This Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTexas announces election audit in four counties after Trump demand Schumer sets Monday showdown on debt ceiling-government funding bill Pennsylvania AG sues to block GOP subpoenas in election probe MORE situation is rapidly deteriorating.
Like a jet with a malfunctioning engine, it is spiraling out of control.
The question now is: How do we land the plane?
Two devastating national polls were released this week, both taken in the wake of Trump's racist comments attacking an Indiana-born federal judge of Mexican heritage and his deeply irresponsible suggestion that President Obama was sympathetic to the Orlando attacker.
The Bloomberg Politics poll has Trump down 12 percentage points, with 55 percent of voters saying they could never vote for Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee.
The ABC News/Washington Post poll has Trump with a 70 percent disapproval rating.
On the current trajectory, there is no visible path back to winning the White House.
Trump's disastrous last three weeks have been almost entirely self-inflicted, yet the collateral damage seriously threatens Republicans running in Senate races in battleground states like Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire.
In spite of all of this, it is hard to convince someone that he has a problem when he doesn't see it himself.
This situation calls for an intervention.
The intervention should be led by Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus, Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanPaul Ryan researched narcissistic personality disorder after Trump win: book Paul Ryan says it's 'really clear' Biden won election: 'It was not rigged. It was not stolen' Democrats fret over Trump-district retirements ahead of midterms MORE (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHouse passes standalone bill to provide B for Israel's Iron Dome Pelosi vows to avert government shutdown McConnell calls Trump a 'fading brand' in Woodward-Costa book MORE (R-Ky.).
They should meet with Trump in person, privately, as soon as possible, with a written list of demands.
Those demands should include Trump agreeing to:
- Stop all personal attacks on Republicans and individuals based on race and gender.
- Aggressively raise money wherever the RNC thinks is best, which would include Trump making requested donor calls.
- Hit fundraising metrics each month or make direct contributions to make up the difference.
- Focus only on battleground states.
- Hire senior campaign staff members who are competent and trusted and have authority to execute the campaign.
- Hire a full communications shop, including a rapid-response team.
The list should be kept private, unless Trump violates it. All four individuals should sign it.
The intervention pitch is simple:
Donald, you are on track to lose in a landslide, and take the Senate majority and the largest House majority since the Truman era with you.
You have choice to make: Either right the ship, or go it entirely alone. We won't give you a dime. You will have no ground game, no data, no communications, no research and no legal assistance.
Refuse to agree to our demands and we rescind our support and seek to replace you as the GOP nominee.
Agree to the demands but break the agreement, and we will release the agreement and rescind our support.
It has come to this.
Priebus, Ryan and McConnell need a fair and reasonable justification to dump Trump, and while I believe his outrageous comments and lack of discipline are more than enough, they are under tremendous political pressure to stick by him. I understand this.
A pledge such as this would put the ball in Trump's court.
This is not a negotiation. This is an intervention.
Mackowiak is syndicated columnist; an Austin, Texas-based Republican consultant; and a former Capitol Hill and George W. Bush administration aide.