A TV show "jumps the shark" when it creates a stunt that is so ridiculous and unbelievable that viewers naturally tune out. It is usually the beginning of the end as ratings plummet with the desperate move. The saying was coined after "Happy Days"' character 'the Fonz' literally jumped over a shark on water skis as ratings for the 70s hit TV show sagged in its fifth season.
Looks like Donald Trump just jumped the shark with his latest effort to save his flailing campaign by bringing in advisors who are notorious for creating spectacle.
Let's start with Stephen Bannon who becomes Trump's new campaign chief executive. Bannon has reportedly been telling Trump to return to his combative ways that made him so popular during the primaries. Campaign sources have told reporters that Bannon has been pushing Trump for a while to run as a proud nationalist who is a bona fide outsider.
This advice contradicts every political strategy that suggests candidates should move to the center during the general election fight. Yes – combative Trump worked in the primary, but that was a race that involved the party base – those who are usually the most fiery and passionate voters.
Now is the time to go after suburban Moms, independents and moderate Democrats - people who typically don't participate in the GOP primary. Pollsters all agree soccer Moms matter in this election and they are described as risk averse. They don't want a president who is going to threaten their children's security.
The general election is not a time to alienate, but to (dare I say it) unite voters. Yes, it's a cliché, but it's true.