A week of all-consuming chaos has caused many political junkies to wonder whether Trump might not make it all the way to Election Day—or even to the GOP convention in Cleveland next month—before finding some face-saving excuse for dropping out.
Speculation like this waxes and wanes with news and polling cycles. It might well disappear a week from now if new polls show Trump unharmed by accusations of racism from within his own party, and surrogates don’t appear to be on knife-edge of defecting.
Still, if Trump is hoping to dispel the speculation, this isn’t helping.
Trump is an ego-driven man. He’d be unlikely to quit the race unless the alternative was just as, if not more, humiliating. Losing in a landslide after five months of the kind of punishment he’s just endured might just meet that high bar. Also, “I’m not dropping out, YOU’RE dropping out” is what every candidate says before dropping out. Things don’t look so great from here.