With the resignation of campaign chairman Paul Manafort, the Trump campaign is now without a single senior figure who has ever run a campaign.
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Donald Trump's team has always been a lean operation fueled by the candidate himself rather than the organization around him, but from the very beginning the Trump campaign included people who had at least some experience running political campaigns.
But now the top ranks of the team include family members, conservative media executive Stephen Bannon and Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway, the new campaign manager.
None of them have experience managing a campaign. And aside from Conway, who is widely respected in Republican circles and spokesman Jason Miller who formerly served as Ted Cruz’s spokesman, the Trump campaign inner circle is now without anybody with significant ties to the what was once known as the leadership of the Republican party.
Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s first campaign manager, was an outsider, but he did run the re-election campaign of Sen. Bob Smith (R-NH) in 2002. The campaign later hired Rick Wiley, who had run Scott Walker’s presidential campaign and Ed Brookover, who had run Ben Carson’s campaign.
All of them had experience running campaigns and all were forced out.
In fact, the Trump campaign has sometimes looked a little like Trump’s old reality TV show, "The Apprentice" -– a series of tryouts facing a familiar fate: Trump telling them, “You’re Fired.”
For reference, here’s a partial list of senior Trump campaign aides and advisors who have been fired or reassigned by Donald Trump:
Roger Stone – Trump’s first political strategist, forced out last August. Sam Nunenberg - Trump’s first full-time political aide, also fired last August. Rick Wiley – Hired as Political Director in April; fired in May. Kevin Kellems – a veteran Republican operative hired in June and fired less than two weeks later. Corey Lewandowski – Fired in June. Michael Caputo - who helped run his campaign in New York, fired in June after gleefully celebrating Lewandowski’s firing. Barry Bennett - formerly of the Carson campaign, fired in July Ed Brookover - fired in July Michael Glassner - Trump’s first political director, a veteran of Bob Dole’s 1996, moved over to Mike Pence team in July. Paul Manafort – Fired in August
And while that looks a like a purge of virtually everybody Trump had hired who had any political experience, it's not clear how much that matters. Most of the political experience the fired staffers had come on the campaigns of candidates who lost.