Speaking with people inside the Trump camp today here's what I'm hearing regarding who he picks as his running mate: If Donald follows the advice of the so-called adults in the room (his kids, campaign chief Paul Manafort and maybe a few other desperate souls) it's going to be Indiana governor Mike Pence, a strong, stable Conservative who would give him a fighting chance to beat Hillary Clinton in November.
But, if he follows the strange voices in his head (AKA as his "gut"), the same voices that have gotten him this far in his political career and often in trouble, these same people tell me Trump could well pick someone who will double-down on his often noxious rhetoric and make beating the well-oiled Clinton machine -- which for all the drawbacks of their candidate is a first-class operation -- nearly impossible.
Seems like an easy choice for most rationale politicians, but as we all know, Trump is anything but rational.
Of course, the dance Donald is doing for his running mate with Newt Gingrich, Chris Christie, Pence and anyone else desperate enough to actually want to work for a guy who listens to no one but his "gut" and gets his rocks off playing a dick-head boss on TV is a microcosm of his whole sordid campaign.
Recall the day he came down the escalator and announced he was running for president and tried to sell the lie that hordes of rapists come across the southern border.
Some Conservatives rightly point out this was a recipe hardly for disaster but for triumph. They love the fact that Trump "isn't PC," "defies the establishment" or "says things everyone else is thinking," even if to the man (and occasionally the woman) they concede that the thought of a rape epidemic near the border in Texas never really crossed their minds until Donald brought it up.
And yes, there is a tremendous upside to Trump's dog whistles about immigration and banning Muslims. The tent of the GOP and the Conservative movement may now be widening to include white working class voters who had been mainstays of the Democratic Party particularly in those all-important swing states like Ohio and Pennsylvania but abhor the multiculturalism of the lefty Democratic Party.
And they love his unpredictability because being a junk-yard dog does have its merits. It keeps the other side guessing and worrying what line of attack might be coming next.
I get all of that, but the downside of Trumpian politics is obvious. Don't believe me, just look at the numbers. Donald is running against a candidate that the FBI director recently branded as a near criminal and "negligent," someone who this same non-partisan FBI director said actually put the nation's national security at risk.
Hillary Clinton is running so far to the left in order to win Bernie Sanders voters she's actually mocking the economic agenda of her former president husband, which included lower taxes on capital gains and loosening of regulations on businesses, and of course a hiring boom.
Her campaign, in short, is a sham, built on a sea of BS that she doesn't believe but is forced to campaign on and implement when she is elected so she can be elected.
Yet, by most measures she's still in the lead even if that lead is shrinking which means Donald has begun turning off as many voters as he's winning over.
Who knows, Donald might just do something smart and listen to his kids and Manafort, and choose Pence. He might start acting more rationale and yes beat Hillary Clinton by cobbling together a GOP coalition that includes not just supply siders and religious conservatives but also working class voters who have been forgotten amid the Democratic Party's infatuation with multicultural identity politics.
Or he could just as easily go with his gut and chose a Trumpian junk-yard dog, someone he might feel comfortable hanging with on the campaign trail, but also someone who doubles-down on comments about Muslims and the ethnicity of a judge.
This path will make it nearly impossible to hold that winning coalition together, and may even cost the GOP both the senate and maybe the house.
If he goes this route, here's to hoping (even praying), that Trump doesn't pick his old butler for VP, but with Donald you never know.