Trump must do everything in his power if he wants to beat Clinton

For one thing, he is still boasting about the size of the crowds he draws, but having several thousand supporters stuff an auditorium is ultimately meaningless. Consider that Mitt Romney got 61 million votes four years ago and got crushed.

For another, the Clintons are succeeding in painting Trump as a dangerous and toxic alternative. Does he not see that, or does he harbor the illusion, like Romney did, that all the polls are wrong?

Some of the changes Trump must make are elementary. He would look less static by taking off his blue suit jacket and red tie and rolling up his sleeves on his white shirt.

While he doesn’t have to kiss a baby or eat a deep-fried Twinkie, getting out from behind the podium to wade into crowds of supporters would create a more active image to match his populist rhetoric.

More fundamentally, the Kerrey standard is about what parts of his mental and emotional self Trump is willing to sacrifice. It is not a demand for compromise but for commitment, a willingness to do whatever it takes.