Donald Trump’s national political director, Jim Murphy, has announced that he will no longer hold an active role in the Republican nominee’s campaign. Murphy has defended his decision based on personal grounds rather than being a reflection of the campaign.
“I have not resigned but for personal reasons have had to take a step back from the campaign,” a statement from Murphy reads, notes Politico.
Trump’s plummet in the polls has caused many to question Murphy’s decision. As of Oct. 19, Trump was trailing Democratic rival Hillary Clinton by over six percentage points, according to RealClearPolitics.
Furthermore, FiveThirtyEight gives Clinton an 86.7 percent chance of winning the Nov. 8 election.
Following the second presidential debate on Oct. 9, Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, made her own suggestion that her loyalty to the campaign could falter.
“I’m with the campaign until the bitter end, unless...” Conway told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, notes the Washington Post.
“Unless what?” Matthews asked.
“Who knows?” Conway continued. “But I’m sitting here as his campaign manager. I’m sitting right here with you in the debate hall where he just performed beautifully.”
Later, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow asked, “We don't know what the ‘unless’ means.”
“I know,” Conway began, suggesting her own set of personal reasons. “I didn't mean to alert the breaking news again, Rachel. The "unless" is very simply; it's unless someone in my household needs me or unless something changes in my own life.”
Murphy is close to Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who resigned from the campaign in August.
Eric Trump defended the decision to Fox News, notes Politico. “I think my father didn’t want to be distracted by whatever things Paul was dealing with.”