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Donald Trump May Actually Be Planning To Lose The Election

Forget the White House, this is what he really wants

It’s a question that sums up the Republican nominee’s bizarre mix of strengths and weaknesses. On the one hand, any billionaire deal-maker worth his salt would definitely have a Plan B on standby if the whole White House thing didn’t pan out. On the other, the evidence is strong that Trump himself is to blame most of all for his faltering bid. It’s hard to compensate for such a litany of grotesque remarks and actions—but Trump hasn’t even embraced campaign basics like disciplined messaging or a proper ground game.

Now, more details have emerged that could explain these baffling moves. Rather than just an unhinged boor handling defeat badly, Trump might be positioning himself for a different kind of victory. For a guy who was tired enough of his real estate business to mount a run for president, there’s a more suitable prize out there than 1600 Pennsylvania Ave—a media company catering to the massive minority of angry Americans who find delight in Trump’s elite lifestyle and populist rhetoric.

Trump campaign chief Steve Bannon, of Breitbart fame, told the Washington Post he wasn’t angling for a deal that would put him in the driver’s seat of Trump TV. But according to the Financial Times, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner did hit up a boutique investment bank known for helping broker big league media deals like Verizon’s AOL purchase and Charter Communications’ monster acquisition of Time Warner Cable. Back in August, the New York Times had reported that Kushner was sounding out media opportunities, and that top campaign aides had floated the prospect too.

Now, of course, the campaign won’t comment. Even if Trump’s too pooped to pop come November 9, the crazy obviousness of a Fox News for Trump fans could inspire someone else—Trump acolyte Sean Hannity?—to make the industry’s gossip come true.

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