Here's a fun thought experiment: Write your version of Trump's November 9th concession speech.
(My version? It'll be a tweet at 3:AM: "Cooked Hillary stole election. My lawsuit is already filed." He will then bluster and whine and cook up conspiracies, and then brag about how much his Presidential run has increased the value of his brand. No lawsuit will ever be filed.)
I’m beginning to come to the conclusion that Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, came up with the idea of baiting Donald Trump into running for president. He’d toyed with it in ’98, he made this Birther thing his standard, and he was easily manipulated and could be used to foment chaos on the Right, particularly in an era where the conservatives were already fighting a flanking action against the Tea Party. By orchestrating Obama shutting down his press conference with his birth certificate, then openly taunting him at the correspondents’ dinner, the Democratic Party stood a good chance of causing Trump to make a mess out of the Republican primary process and, regardless of how he did, lick his wounds by remaining a media blowhard sniping the Republicans from the right.
This is a woman who, more than anyone, has been a victim of the “vast right-wing conspiracy” and it’s entirely within her wheelhouse to judo-flip that shit right the fuck back on the Republicans. I do not know that she expected as much success as she’s had, but realistically speaking, Donald Trump has better odds of losing a game of Russian Roulette than he does of winning the election at this point. He’s dragging Republican turnout down. He’s actually thrown Arizona into play. And regardless of what this election looks like downticket, the midterms are going to be a clusterfuck of rare caliber. Meanwhile, the Democratic Party has assumed the hopey-changey mantle, are saying America is already great, and as has been pointed out by pretty much everyone, Americans hate Hillary when she’s running for something and love the shit out of her when she’s actually got it.
I think this is a long-con going back to 2008. I think she pitched it as a way to hobble the Republican party for a couple electoral cycles at least, and I think the Democrats are experiencing success greater than they ever imagined.