Hilly is safely locked away in “debate prep”. Keeping her off the trail makes total sense as a) even the tame media might ask awkward questions if they could actually see her, b) the HRC campaign has pretty much abandoned any issue-based campaigning, c) her appearance would get in the way of the coordinated media assault on Trump.
The full array of MSM big guns have been pounding away at the pressing issue of where Trump’s hands were alleged to be 10, 12, 20 years ago. Wave after wave of allegations are being thrown at the wall with the rather quaint20th-centuryy idea that if the NYT, WP, CBS, NBC and ABC all say similar things they must be true, or, at least, sorta true. And, besides, even if they are not true they knock Trump off message. (A comprehensive rebuttal of the handsy allegations can be found here.)
Plus, as the Wiki-leaks Podesta emails pile up, each with a nugget of nasty truth about Hilly and her ilk, MSM realizes that it needs to coordinate with the HRC campaign and DNC to keep the emails off the front pages lest the electorate begins to realize just what a criminal Hilly is.
Will it be enough? It might be if the campaign can, in fact, get out the Dem vote and if nothing really significant happens between now and Election day. One thing which the Wikileaks emails firmly establish is just how fundamentally the MSM supports Hilly so the bar for “significant” is high indeed.
At the moment the narrative seems to be shifting from the groping brawl to a proclamation of victory. This piece in the Guardian sets the standard themes: Trump in tailspin, big Clinton victory, don’t get in the way of your enemy’s mistakes. Those themes are likely to be repeated for the next few days and the headlines for a devastating Trump defeat in the third debate on the 19th is, I suspect, already written.
Having a celebration at centre ice at the fourth minute of the third period when your team has a one goal lead has a single consequence: a delay of game penalty. Sending your goons out to “take out” your opposition’s leading scorer leads to game, and even match, misconducts. But both can go a long way towards destroying the momentum of that opposition. Getting that momentum back is difficult.
The Trump campaign needs a single, clarifying, moment. A hundred emails with Hilly selling SecState access to Clinton Foundation donors are damning but they don’t finish her. The endless proof she lied to Congress, the FBI and the American people has been suppressed, obfuscated and steeply discounted by a compliant media. Her willingness to say one thing to the donor class and another to the public has been glossed over and, besides, it is “complicated” and most of the journalists covering the campaign are simply too stupid and ill-educated to write about “complicated”.
What Trump needs at this moment is an easily understood, simple, black and white, no fact checking needed, event.
In the second part of this post I will outline a few of the possibilities.