Despite being the ostensible leader of a fractured Republican Party that needs to be brought together, Trump can’t help himself. At a campaign rally this week, Trump slammed New Mexico’s Republican Governor Susana Martinez. “She’s got to do a better job. Okay? Your governor has got to do a better job,” Trump said. “She’s not doing the job. Hey! Maybe I’ll run for governor of New Mexico. I’ll get this place going.” He then said that Mitt Romney walks like a penguin, which is both funny and true, and that he “choked like a dog,” which makes no sense whatsoever. He also made cracks about Nikki Haley, Marco Rubio, and Jeb Bush.
Trump’s campaign strategy in the primaries fell between “I just can’t help myself” and Gabbo’s “I’m a bad widdle boy,” but he was supposed to change as he pivoted to the general. Republicans aren’t happy about it at all—The Washington Post makes clear that Trump’s refusal to play nice is one of the obstacles holding up Paul Ryan’s endorsement. But knocking Republicans is one of the key aspects of Trump’s appeal—it’s a way of proving that he can’t be bought or swayed, that he’s not your average politician. And while Trump may be very unpopular, the GOP as a whole is, too. He has little to lose by owning them over and over again.