As Steve M. points out, the notion that Trump will lose because he doesn't have a ground game is garbage: the GOP Right Wing Noise Machine *is* the Republican "get out the vote" ground game, and they're doing everything they can to win this election.
I know all the smart folks -- the Sam Wangs, the Ed Kilgores -- are sanguine about the effect of all this on the outcome of the election. We're too polarized for this to change many votes, they tell us. Clinton has a big lead and a firewall of several states, and, unlike Trump, she has a get-out-the-vote effort.
Well, this is Trump's get-out-the-vote effort, however little his campaign may be involved in it. It's going to bring Republicans home to a nominee a lot of them have been reluctant to support, and even if it suppresses a tiny percentage of the Clinton vote, the loss of her least enthusiastic voters could tip the election.
Nate Silver is already pondering scenarios in which an election that seemed likely to be an Obama-sized victory for Clinton now comes down to one state, possibly Pennsylvania, assuming Trump takes a lot of the toss-up states. I think Clinton will win Pennsylvania -- she's up nearly 6 points there according to Real Clear Politics. She has a cushion.
But I think if Trump doesn't win, Republicans not named Trump are certain to try to litigate her victory. Oh, she won because of Pennsylvania? Lotta fishy stuff happens in Philadelphia at the polls, doesn't it, especially in certain neighborhoods?
It's been said that Vladimir Putin doesn't actually want Trump to win -- he assumes Clinton's victory is inevitable and just wants to weaken her as much as he can. I don't know if that's really what Putin is thinking, but it's more or less what the GOP is thinking. I seriously believe you'll see Mitch McConnell or Jason Chaffetz or, who knows, maybe even John McCain seriously suggesting that electors withhold their votes for Clinton because the race was close and because all those FBI investigations seriously call into question whether she should serve as president.
In other words: Either Trump's going to win or we really might have a ginned-up constitutional crisis. I'll be pleasantly surprised if we avoid both of these outcomes.
I think we'll avoid the first. But the second, well...Congressional Republicans were already promising endless investigations and obstruction of Clinton appointments and executive branch actions, and that was before Comey crapped in the punchbowl.
The Republican platform is clear: they're going to make those people pay for every second she's in office, and when that subset of people includes 95% of America, well it'll be all her fault. The Age of Trump means that if the GOP can't win, they'll make the country completely ungovernable. At this point I would take their word on that threat. And somehow America mired in a constitutional crisis for the next several months or longer will be Clinton's fault. Watch.
Happy Halloween! Our long national nightmare is just beginning.