Remember this moment of the campaign.
I say this not to gloat about Donald Trump’s latest meltdown — that’s what Twitter is for — or because I think the race is anywhere close to over. It is entirely possible, even likely, that the polls will tighten again between now and November. Bounces fade. Memories are short. Hillary Clinton could commit some horrible gaffe or become embroiled in some scandal, real or imagined. The unusually high percentage of Republicans who are now telling pollsters they aren’t supporting their party’s nominee could shrink. Trump could show up at the debates with an entirely new personality that makes him a palatable human being for the first time in this campaign. You never know.
Still, even if none of this occurs, the media will eventually grow tired of the “Trump’s finished” story line and move on to the much more clickable “Trump’s comeback” narrative. Any day now, some Quinnipiac poll that shows a tied race in Pennsylvania will force Democrats to lose control of their bladders. A Trump surge in a stray tracking poll will result in a CNN Breaking News Countdown Clock that will tick down the seconds to an emergency panel of 37 pundits. The sheer hysteria of the “How Could She Blow This?” pieces will dwarf the collective freak-out that followed President Obama’s first debate loss in 2012. It won’t be pretty.
And that’s when we’ll all need to stop, take a deep breath, and remember this moment.
Quinnipiac poll results in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania will be released tomorrow morning at 6am.