I'll just give one example. I watch all the shows, and it was getting to the point where we were laughing at the repetition of the don't-get-distracted advice from people who were obviously not Trump proponents. This one was on "Fox News Sunday," with Bret Baier questioning the Democratic strategist Joe Trippi.
BAIER: You know, Joe, you saw Mike Pence. He's been answering these questions about the allegations.Earlier on the show, Baier had interviewed Pence and referred to "the accusations" and "nine women with these allegations." He never said the word "sex" or "sexual assault" or "groping." We were supposed to know what he was talking about and (I guess) appreciate that he wasn't so crass as to mention sex.
I didn't go down the road too far, but, I mean, you have to think he's wincing on some of these answers or some of this campaigning about the accusers.Trippi is just one example of that. It's like a memo went out: If Trump wants to win he needs to leave those accusers alone. Don't respond. But Trippi doesn't want Trump to win.
JOE TRIPPI, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, he has to be because part of the whole problem, the difference in the polling numbers, is women. And they've moved away from Trump, even groups that tend to be Republican with women. Moderate Republican women are moving away. And so, this isn't how you get them back. They're gettable because they've been voting Republican all these years. So, and they’ve got arguments. But the argument isn't to go after the accusers. So, I think this is a -- that's what I think is going to be interesting about this debate. Is that the Donald Trump that shows up that goes after the accusers and keeps giving Clinton this advantage or does he try to reach out to them? That's what I think is going to be the key.
ADDED: Trippi seems to assume that the only way for Trump to defend himself is to "go after" the women. Even though Trump's opponent has a record of attacking women who made sexual allegations against her husband, Trump could stress the unfairness of dropping these stories so late in the process. And there might be a way to connect this to the Rolling Stone trial that's starting tomorrow. Allegations can be false and the process can be unfair. That could inspire some empathy for the pugnacious billionaire. Who knows?