I've been trying to put together material for a post on the election but I'm not sure where to start. I've been intrigued and horrified by the Trump phenomenon--it's like a car wreck that I can't look away from. How prescient and relevant this blog's last debate about presidential politics now seems! (I'll have to cut some relevant excerpts from that into a new post, soon).
My main take-away about Trump right now is this: I don't think he wants to be President. I don't think when he started running he'd ever given any thought to actually winning. I think he thought it would be a great way to go on TV and get publicity--to build his 'brand' such as it is. That's why he doesn't have handlers; that's why he doesn't have a lot of staff. He isn't interested in trying to win. He just wants attention.
I'm not saying that he ever necessarily said to himself--I have no chance--I just don't think he thought that far ahead. And now that he's at least likely to be the nominee, he wants a way out. He doesn't want to spend all summer campaigning. He doesn't want to face the vast forces that have finally arrayed against him; he doesn't want to get pummeled in the general election. He wants a way out.
How he contrives that way out, I don't know. Maybe that's why he keeps upping the ante on the outrageousness and offensiveness of what he says; he's hoping he'll finally cross some boundary that precludes him from running. But if the GOP could work out some non-humiliating drop-out mechanism--some way to frame his leaving not as a defeat or an admission of giving up, but as something triumphant and noble-- I think he'd take it.