There’s been something missing from the Trump campaign recently and I don’t mean displays of steaks, champagne or Yuge private jets. While he’s been on TV and radio on a daily basis, The Donald hasn’t held a single public rally in more than a week. Given his overall strategy through the entire primary this seems an odd turn of events. Zeke Miller at Time Magazine took note of this curious development in his daily brief without much in the way of an explanation.
Donald Trump hasn’t held a public campaign event in nine days, and his schedule for the week remains clear. Instead the presumptive GOP nominee and top aides are making the rounds of television shows as they seek to continue his most unconventional campaign. But the limits of that strategy are emerging, as Trump faces tougher questions about his taxes, shifting policy positions and treatment of women. In addition, the candidate found himself on defense this weekend over a leaked audiotape of a man, who sounded awfully like Trump, promoting Trump’s personal and professional conquests. Trump’s free-media first strategy worked well when he was one in a field of 17, now it will be tested when he’s the undisputed GOP nominee.
What’s up with that? Well, as with many things the real estate mogul does it may be smarter to once again abandon conventional political campaign strategy and throw everyone a curve ball. Trump is currently fighting a multi-front war. He’s under attack from both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, as well as the New York Times and the rest of the Left side mainstream media, plus taking non-stop fire from a group of prominent conservative media figures who are now determined to help elect Hillary Clinton. With that in mind, Trump is likely gauging how much positive feedback he would be getting from more rallies versus what his actual focus needs to be.
He’s also not really in crisis mode right now. As proof of that, you’ll note that Miller is seeking some way to portray Trump as being “in trouble” or on the ropes and only manages to come up with current media stories about the now highly discredited New York Times piece about his trouble with women and what may or may not have been some prank calls into radio shows decades ago pretending to be his own PR guy. These aren’t exactly damaging scandals on the order of having the FBI investigating you for a possible appearance in an orange jump suit.
Meanwhile, the rallies might not be the best investment of his time given the current battlefield conditions. Whenever he has one, protesters show up and start fights which are inevitably portrayed as being the fault of his supporters if not Trump himself. Why generate more negative headlines when there’s no need for them? Meanwhile, Hillary is distracted with Bernie Sanders and coming off as visibly annoyed that she still needs to be out on the primary campaign trail while Trump has an open field to move the ball. He’s getting national mileage out of all the cable news interviews he’s doing without all the protesters to serve up a negative alternate story for the media.
I’m pretty sure we’ll see Trump at some more packed stadiums in the near future, but for the moment he seems to once again be zigging when the media expected him to zag.