Hard Starboard!

Predicting what Donald Trump will do or what its effect will be has proven to be the most dangerous thing anyone can do in this cycle. All that said I’m going out on a limb. With the most recent staffing moves in the Trump campaign I’m predicting it will be hard right to the finish. While I won’t completely rule it out, I think it is less likely than ever that Trump will drop out before November. I think he will finish the race and lose in an Electoral College landslide that will set the Republican Party even further back as a national Party.

Wednesday morning America awoke to the news that Paul Manafort had effectively been demoted in the wake of sinking poll numbers and a Ukraine-Russia scandal. The new campaign head is Breitbart News CEO (he’s officially taking a leave of absence) Steve Bannon. Bannon’s title is Chief Executive of the Trump Campaign. Also moving up in the shuffle is Kellyanne Conway whose new title is Campaign Manager.

Conway is primarily a pollster whose has been close to Trump for some time. It appears her big political claim to fame is being part of the 2012 Newt Gingrich for President Campaign, Book and DVD selling tour. Being female and not named Trump I doubt she will have much of an impact on the thinking of The Donald.

Bannon is a right wing extremist plain and simple! He has also been fiercely loyal to Trump from the beginning. When then Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski physically assaulted Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields, Bannon left her out on her own. In the wake of the event Fields and several high ranking Breitbart News people resigned.

Bannon is a former Goldman Sachs employee. One of his side ventures is producing films including a documentary about Sarah Palin.

This is the third campaign chief Trump has had to date. (Based on the calendar I’m assuming it will be the final one.) He started out with former Americans for Prosperity operative Lewandowski. Lewandowski was fired in June and is now working for CNN. In March Paul Manafort was brought onboard and he took Lewandowski’s place in June.

Lewandowski’s mantra was “Let Trump be Trump.” That worked well in the primary. If rumors are to be believed Manafort was trying (not very successfully) to get Trump to pivot to a more moderate and conventional general election strategy. Breitbart Bannon will certainly try to feature more of the old Donald (he never really did disappear except for a few hours at a time).

The Trump campaign is very good at winning the 2016 Republican primary and seems intent on repeatedly proving that point despite the consequences. In a campaign full of uncertainty one thing I am confident in is that there will be plenty of fodder for articles between now and Election Day. Who needs fiction with a Steve Bannon advised Donald Trump running for President?

If the Trump campaign was a ship it now has a new first officer on the bridge. His name is Steve Bannon (who incidentally was a naval officer) and he just yelled “Hard starboard!”

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