They have to decide what role Donald Trump is going to play in the story they write about him, much as the Obama campaign in 2012 had to decide what Mitt Romney was going to be—or much as Trump has already decided what Hillary is going to be (“Crooked Hillary”). There was a debate early in the 2012 Obama campaign about whether to depict Romney as a conviction-free, flip-flopping opportunist or an evil plutocrat feasting on the bone marrow of the proletariat. They went the C. Montgomery Burns path and synced all of their tactics accordingly. It won them another four years. (And who supposedly helped them settle on rich monster over flip-flopper? Bill Clinton.)
Just because the Clinton people know they have to tell a story about Donald Trump, though, doesn’t mean such a story easily presents itself. There are so many options they don’t know where to begin. Romney could be cut pretty easily into the two archetypes of opportunist or plutocrat. With Trump, you have: opportunist, plutocrat, racist demagogue, sexist pig, business fraud, narcissist, clown who is completely unfit for the presidency both in terms of knowledge and temperament, and asshole. Which should the Clinton campaign go with?