Donald Trump is basically screwed.
After the worst week in the history of his campaign, it has transpired that not only does Trump not have the support of the GOP establishment for his fight against Hillary Clinton, he doesn't have anywhere near enough money to compete with her.
As we learned recently, Trump has a war chest of $1.3 million -- an appallingly low amount that puts him at a minimum $40.3 million deficit compared to his rival Hillary Clinton. CNN reported:
Clinton's campaign had $42 million in the bank as of May 31, according to its report filed with the Federal Election Commission Monday. Her super PAC Priorities USA has $52 million.
In fact, Trump's starting amount is the lowest in modern history -- less than every Republican senator up for re-election in competitive races. It is a testament to just how idiotic his campaign has been, and a sign of Trump's inability to understand the basic business of presidential politics. The New York Times declared that: "Donald J. Trump enters the general election campaign laboring under the worst financial and organizational disadvantage of any major party nominee in recent history, placing both his candidacy and his party in political peril."
To put it bluntly, Donald Trump needs a miracle to take on Hillary Clinton, and given the people he has offended and isolated on his way to the top of the GOP, he shouldn't count on one.
Trump was able to beat back the Republican field in the primaries largely due to the fact he was running against one of the most pathetic bunch of hacks in history, and also as a result of his considerable personal cash infusions. Trump plowed $55 million into his primary campaign, and has said he'd be willing to put more into his general election bid.
"It would be nice to have some help from the party," Trump told NBC's "Today".
Unfortunately for Trump, he can't bank on that. With rampant talks of coups and secret strategies to get him out of the race, Trump understands the GOP establishment wants nothing to do with him, but has used his popularity amongst GOP voters to bully them into submission. We are now witnessing the beginnings of a big shift in the balance of power as Trump starts to understand exactly what he is up against in the general election -- a well funded Democratic candidate who knows the business of presidential politics better than anyone in US history.
For all Trump's bragging about his business acumen, he, like many other narcissistic billionaires have absolutely no idea what they are doing when it comes to the business of politics and governance. Flipping commercial real estate and building golf courses is one thing, but winning a presidential election and actual engaging in the business of running a country is an entirely different ball game. To win in politics, you have to play the long game -- and that means not engaging in petty nonsense. Trump literally lives for the petty campaign bickering, which is hardly a surprise given he has spent decades engaging in pointless feuds with those who have crossed him.
Hillary Clinton was on the receiving end of President Obama's long term strategy in 2008, and found out the hard way that presidential politics is a war, not a series of isolated battles. Obama simply ignored the Clinton campaign's endless pivoting and attempts to engage them in a mud slinging contest, focusing instead on winning over the American population with a positive vision for the future and a highly effective money raising strategy.
Clinton has no doubt learned from her mistakes and is about to take Mr. Trump to school for the remainder of this presidential election. Because for better or for worse, money is one of the most important factors in a presidential campaign, and Hillary Clinton is set to smash Trump every step of the way -- a rather ironic twist of fate for a man who has always defined himself by how much money he could generate.