Donald Trump’s chances to win Wisconsin in the November presidential election were decimated when footage of lewd comments he made about women surfaced on Friday, a conservative analyst said.
Brian Fraley, who runs the political consulting firm Edge Messaging and has worked on a number of Republican campaigns, said in an interview on "UpFront with Mike Gousha" that the video will cost Trump Wisconsin, a state that was previously within his reach.
“He’s done,” Fraley said.
In the video, Trump brags about being able to use his celebrity status to kiss and grope women. But those comments probably won’t cause many of his supporters to disown him, Fraley said.
“I think the erosion of Trump support both here and nationally could be minimal, because Trump being a vulgar, obnoxious misogynist is kind of unfortunately baked in the cake, right?” Fraley said.
Rather, Fraley said he thinks these comments have cost Trump the opportunity to win over undecided voters. He said Trump had a shot of winning Wisconsin, as he was performing well in the 8th, 7th, and northern parts of the 3rd congressional districts.
But Hillary Clinton and Trump have both been polling at under 50 percent, making undecided and independent voters crucial to either candidate's success. Specifically, Trump needed to court independents, suburban swing voters and women in the “WOW” counties (Waukesha, Ozaukee, Washington) who don’t necessarily affiliate with the Republican party but often vote Republican, Fraley said.
“He was really hurting with those and was targeting them. I don’t see them now saying 'Well yeah, sure, I’ll join. I’ll join the Trump train,'" Fraley said.
When host Gousha asked Fraley to comment on the argument that Trump’s statements were an example of “guys being guys,” Fraley argued that Trump’s statements are categorically different.
“He was bragging about how he used his celebrity and his authority and power to sexually assault and grope woman,” Fraley said. “It’s far different than just locker room talk.”
Trump’s behavior will also likely be very damaging in the long term for Republican politicians who have supported him, Fraley said. He said those politicians should make a stand against Trump.
“I would love to see someone take a principled stand and put either their political career, or their elected office or their position second and walk away publicly,” Fraley said. “I think it has to be a high-profile person to kind of give a permission slip to everyone else.”
Gousha asked if Paul Ryan would be an example of such a politician. Fraley said yes, adding that Ryan’s decision to disinvite Trump from Saturday’s rally in Elkhorn was appreciated, but did not go far enough.
“In the end you are judged not only by the company you keep, but by the decisions you make,” Fraley said.