If you are looking forward to the next and final presidential debate – be warned. Strategists for both sides believe that it will be the single nastiest debate of this year.
Why? Because it’s now or never for Trump. The Republican nominee has to find some way to gain traction in the debate on Wednesday.
Polls show that Trump now lags Hillary Clinton in the RealClearPolitics national polling by average of 7 points, a margin that means he is in danger of being routed on Nov. 8th.
Data forecasting site FiveThirtyEight gives him only about a 14 percent chance of winning the White House. 14 percent chance means that Trump has nothing to lose when he walks onto that stage at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Grant Reeher, a political science professor at Syracuse University, said he believed Trump would make “some kind of effort to really do something dramatic. We don’t know what that is yet. But the reason for that is that his position is not good – and actually…is worse than it looks.” Reeher based that statement in part on the belief that Trump is being seriously outgunned by the Clinton campaign when it comes to get-out-the-vote efforts, or the “ground game.” According to a FiveThirtyEight count, Trump has 207 field offices nationwide, compared to 489 for Clinton.
Clinton has other advantages too. She and her allies have roughly twice as much cash on hand as Team Trump.
Clinton also continues to outpace Trump when it comes to TV ad spending. According to a Bloomberg analysis, she spent $12.9 million on TV ads in the week beginning Oct. 4th as compared to about $6 million for Trump. Overall, Bloomberg noted, Clinton had outspent Trump by a factor of more than 4-to-1, $144.5 million to $31.7 million.
Even Republicans acknowledge that the prognosis is bleak for Trump.
So, now that you are warned – the debate starts at 9:00 pm ET tonight and is the last for these two candidates.