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Trump Plots His Exit Strategy

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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at an event Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015, in Franklin, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at an event Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015, in Franklin, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

The following is an excerpt from Chuck Todd and Mark Murray | October 5, 2015 | msnbc.com |

Trump talks about possible exit from ’16 field… Just as his numbers decline a bit in new NBC/WSJ/Marist polls of Iowa, NH… More from our NBC/WSJ/Marist polls: Hillary leads in Iowa, while Sanders is ahead in the Granite State… What Clinton told Savannah Guthrie at this morning’s “Pancakes & Politics” town hall in Hollis, NH… Hillary unveils gun-control proposals… WaPo: Fiorina didn’t immediately pay staffers/consultants from her failed 2010 Senate run… The inevitable Bush vs. Rubio fight is here… And TPP agreement is reached – which has big 2016 consequences.

Trump talks about possible exit from ’16 field

Donald Trump continues to lead the GOP presidential horserace – see our new NBC/WSJ/Marist polls of the key early states of Iowa and New Hampshire. But what happens if Trump suddenly exits the race in December or January? It’s not a far-fetched idea. “If I were doing poorly, if I saw myself going down, if you would stop calling me ‘cause you no longer have any interest in Trump because ‘he has no chance,’ I’d go back to my business. I have no problem with that,” Trump said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” yesterday.

Translation: If he’s not a sure bet to win the GOP nomination, he’ll get out, which would completely reshuffle the Republican race – and which could benefit several different other Republican contenders. Jeb Bush? Marco Rubio? Ted Cruz? Ben Carson or Carly Fiorina? Trump replied on Twitter yesterday: “I’m leading by big margins in every poll but the press keeps asking, would you ever get out? They are just troublemakers, I’m going to win!” But notice that he didn’t deny this escape-hatch possibility. And it wasn’t the first time that he’s floated it, either (see his interview with CNBC’s John Harwood from last week).

For more visit: msnbc.com

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