Donald Trump has proven very good at one thing since securing the Republican presidential nomination on May 3: Having really, really bad weeks.
This week was no exception.
First came his decidedly mixed response to the largest mass shooting in U.S. history in a nightclub in Orlando. After briefly expressing condolences, Trump was back to his usual self, tweeting a self-congratulatory note about how he was right about the threat posed by Islamic terrorism.
Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism, I don't want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance. We must be smart!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 12, 2016
Trump then found himself on the receiving end of President Obama's anger. The president slammed the presumptive GOP nominee for focusing on whether he was willing to say the words "radical Islam" when discussing the threat posed by Orlando shooter Omar Mateen and other lone wolfs who have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State, also known as ISIL or ISIS.
"What exactly would using this label accomplish," Obama asked angrily during a press event on Tuesday. "What exactly would it change? Would it make ISIL less committed to try to kill Americans? Would it bring in more allies? Is there a military strategy that is served by this? The answer is none of the above."
Then came the controversy Trump set off when he referred to "soldiers" who stole millions of dollars following the invasion of Iraq. Trump's spokeswoman insisted the candidate was talking about Iraqi soldiers only, but plenty of U.S. soldiers blanched at the charges.
A presidential candidate just accused me and thousands of other troops of embezzlement while in a combat zone. https://t.co/Seiu5P0KcB
— Ben Kesling (@bkesling) June 15, 2016
Finally came the polls -- Trump's favorite rhetorical crutch and his security blanket throughout the long Republican primary fight. No matter what he said or did in that race, the polls always showed him winning -- and Trump made sure you knew it.
Unfortunately for him, the general election electorate has proven less hospitable to his message. A Washington Post-ABC News poll released this week showed that 7 in 10 voters had a negative opinion about Trump -- his worst ratings on that question in the history of his candidacy.
Other swing state and national polls suggested Trump was falling a significant distance behind Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee. And the trend line of head-to-head numbers had to cause Republicans heartburn.
Politicians, ever the survivalists, began to inch further and further away from Trump. And a group of Republican delegates launched an effort to keep Trump from the nomination at the GOP convention in Cleveland next month.
Trump has had a disastrous six-plus week run since becoming the presumptive GOP nominee. This past week feels more like the rule than the exception.