US Election 2016

US election media review - Is Donald Trump's campaign over?

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Media captionTrump apologises for lewd comments and vows to be a "better man"

Among all the media fallout over the revelation of Donald Trump's obscene comments about women in a 2005 videotape, two things stand out.

Did he really apologise? And has his campaign terminally imploded?

There have been many turning points in many campaigns in the long history of American politics, and for many US commentators, Donald Trump may have finally dropped off the edge of the cliff.

Glenn Thrush and Katie Glueck, writing for Politico, said it was "fitting that the election of Hillary Clinton as the first female president might have been sealed by Donald Trump's treatment of women as subordinate, interchangeable, pliable playthings.

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Media captionDonald Trump makes offensive comments about women

"Trump - a compulsively public politician who has mouthed some of the most hilarious (intentionally or otherwise), offensive, fact-allergic and misogynistic statements by anyone competing in the public arena - might be ultimately undone by a private admission about a woman he wanted to have sex with."

'It's over'

Avik Roy in Forbes, cites a number of the faux pas that have dogged Mr Trump over the past few weeks.

He says: "None of this was enough to prevent nearly all leading GOP [Republican] lawmakers from endorsing Trump as their nominee. But the latest tape just might. Why?

"Because few Republican lawmakers have Muslim relatives. Few Republican lawmakers are of Mexican heritage. Few Republican lawmakers have faced discrimination based on the colour of their skin. But all of them have white female relatives. And therefore, when Trump talks about grabbing white women by the genitals, they can directly relate."

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Stephen Collinson for CNN says the "stunning developments are forcing a moment of reckoning for Republican Party leaders who have made a pact with a nominee many of them privately view as vulgar and unacceptable, and must now decide whether to cut him loose".

Ali Vitali and Benjy Sarlin, for NBC News, start their article by saying that for "the second Friday in a row, Donald Trump's campaign is heading into the weekend in an existential crisis sparked by the candidate's behaviour toward women - and Republicans may have had enough this time. 'It's over,' a Republican strategist who has been supportive of Trump said. "Never seen anything like it. Never will."

They do say that "few high-profile Trump supporters rescinded their endorsement" and that Mr Trump might try to turn the tables on Mrs Clinton over the latest Wikileaks dump of material from her private speeches.

But they add: "With 30 days to go, every minute spent defending his behaviour is a minute closer to a loss."

Ryan Grim in the Huffington Post issues a rallying call for voters to punish the Republican candidate.

"If Donald Trump does what he claims he does to women, he's guilty of a crime punishable by time in prison. There's no telling what Trump's legal fate is over the next few years, but the first chance that the American public will have to cast judgment comes at the ballot box.

"And that judgment holds the potential to be devastating: The American people are within striking distance of delivering the most brutal rejection of a major party candidate in US history."

'Basic human decency'

As far as the apology is concerned, Glenn Thrush and Katie Glueck say that for Mr Trump "defiance is no longer a luxury the brash candidate can afford" and that he appears "at long last, to have grasped the perils of non-contrition."

Maggie Haberman for the New York Times, is not convinced.

"For hours on Friday night, the political world waited for the rarest of expressions from Donald J Trump - a heartfelt apology. What viewers got was anything but.

"Oddly, Mr Trump seemed to frame his comments not as sincere concern about those he may have hurt or offended, but as part of his own journey, describing his growth as a person and how humbling it has been for him to campaign across the nation and learn of other people's worries and travails."

Ezra Klein, writing for Vox, was more outspoken.

"This isn't about fitness for the presidency. This is about basic human decency.

"Trump doesn't think what he said was so bad. He thinks it's... normal. He thinks it's how men talk in locker rooms. He is sorry if anyone was offended.

"This is not normal. This is not how men speak in locker rooms. And the problem here is not that someone, somewhere, was offended. The problem is if the rest of us are not offended."

Ruth Marcus in the Washington Post calls Mr Trump's comments "remarkable for their grossness".

"To imagine how men talk behind closed doors, to know the kinds of things that Trump has said in the past, is one thing. Hearing a tape like this and thinking about this man becoming the president of the United States is another.

"Trump has bragged that he could shoot someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue and his supporters would stay loyal. Now we get to find out."

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