They will face each other for the last time in Las Vegas tonight, and for Donald Trump it will be his last chance to try to stop Hilary Clinton from becoming the first female president of the United States.
And burying him in a landslide.
It’s now or never for Donald Trump.
Trump now lags Hillary Clinton in the RealClearPolitics national polling average by about 7 percentage points, a margin that suggests he is in danger of being routed on Nov. 8.
And Trump is no doubt hoping that Hillary Clinton's WikiLeak's e-mails will damage her enough to save him from disaster.
But if he is hoping those e-mails will save him, like Hitler in his final days hoped a phantom army would rescue him, he is almost certainly going to be disappointed.
For while some of the e-mails are embarrassing, there is no smoking gun, and they don't tell us anything we didn't already know about Hillary Clinton.
The Hillary Clinton depicted in these many, many pages is the same Hillary Clinton you already know — and either love, tolerate or loathe. If you were paying attention before last week, WikiLeaks won’t change your mind.
She is a cautious, tightly controlled, political pragmatist, and about as inspiring as a dishcloth.
And if the Republicans had fielded a better change candidate, he or she might have had a chance of defeating her.
But Donald Trump is not that candidate. He's Clinton's greatest asset, and his own worst enemy.
He's bringing the wrong person to tonight's debate.
Donald Trump is easily triggered. On the same day that President Barack Obama called on him to not whine so much about losing, the Republican nominee to succeed him in the White House responded by inviting his half-brother Malik to attend Wednesday’s third and final presidential debate in Las Vegas.
Which can only distract from any other message he might have, and remind Americans of his obscene birtherism campaign.
And to make matters worse, he has spent the last few days claiming that the election will be rigged, and raising the spectre of intimidation and violence.
Warning darkly of a stolen election, Donald J. Trump has called on supporters to turn out in droves on Election Day to monitor polling places, telling them they need to be vigilant against widespread voter fraud and a rigged outcome.
Which will allow Clinton to portray Trump as dangerously unstable, criminally irresponsible.
And a foul bully.
We can't let Donald Trump bully his way to the presidency. pic.twitter.com/WPLMpkLFYS— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) October 17, 2016
You know, there was a little story yesterday that could almost serve as a parable for this campaign.
The story of the cartoonist Matt Furie trying to save his creation Pepe the Frog from being used by Donald Trump and his neo-nazi deplorables
The creator of Pepe the Frog has joined with civil rights groups to try and rescue the cartoon frog from being used by the alt-right.
“It’s completely insane that Pepe has been labeled a symbol of hate, and that racists and anti-Semites are using a once peaceful frog-dude from my comic book as an icon of hate,” Furie said. “It’s a nightmare, and the only thing I can do is see this as an opportunity to speak out against hate.
By trying to return his frog to his original blissed out state, and portraying his election nightmare this way.
Which for me seems to symbolize this election campaign from hell...
For let's not forget the real implication of the Wikileak's dump, if Vladimir Putin or any of his associates are shown to have deliberately intervened in a U.S. election.
Should Clinton win, we’ll be on a frigid Cold War footing from the start. In the increasingly unlikely scenario that Trump wins, the consequence could be worse: Putin will believe the president of the United States owes him one.
And yes, Donald Trump is a monster, his own worst enemy, and too dangerous to be president.
And unless Hillary Clinton makes some terrible mistake.
In the end that is what will defeat him...