October surprise / äkˈtōbər sə(r)ˈprīz/ noun
any political event orchestrated (or apparently orchestrated) in the month before an election, in the hopes of affecting the outcome.

October shit show / äkˈtōbər SHit·shō / noun

a video leaked to the Washington Post that reveals a presidential candidate talking about attempting to have sex with married women and how he is entitled to grab women’s genitals because he’s “a star.”

Well folks. That should just about do it. We already knew that after an abysmal debate performance, Donald Trump is trailing Hillary Clinton in the polls. And those numbers were collected before the GOP White House hopeful suggested that veterans suffering from PTSD who commit suicide “can’t handle it” or insisted, contra all evidence, that the Central Park Five—whom he’d previously called to have executed before they even stood trialwere in fact guilty.

That was bad enough, right? Nope. Not even close. Last night, anyone within earshot of a television got to meet a different Donald Trump—the Trump whose vile remarks pushed a Category 2 hurricane wreaking havoc on the the lower U.S. into the second tier of news coverage.

It’s probably not a good idea to watch if your kids are around, but here’s the video, courtesy of the Washington Post.

Reactions to the video were swift. First, let’s hear from a bunch of guys Trump has characterized as, well, “losers.”

How about the chairman of the national GOP, a guy who has
previously threatened repercussions for any Republican who doesn’t fall in line with Trump.

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus condemned Donald Trump’s sexually aggressive comments about women in a curt statement: “No woman should ever be described in these terms or talked about in this manner. Ever.”

Utah’s most prominent Republicans have said they will not vote for Trump, and Senator Mike Lee—never Trump’s biggest fan, but still—has even demanded his resignation from the ticket.

What about Trump’s most prominent North Carolinian surrogates?

Senator Richard Burr: “The comments are inappropriate and completely unacceptable.”

House Speaker Tim Moore:

And finally, Governor McCrory (a guy who once made a transphobic joke at a Trump rally):
Know what you didn’t hear in that string of denunciations? Any hint that they would be pulling their support for Trump or an acknowledgment that maybe a man who boasts about sexual assault—on top of all of his other sins against common decency—shouldn’t be given access to the nuclear codes. Other Republicans have stood up and said enough:

Representative Barbara Comstock, R-Virginia: “This is disgusting, vile, and disqualifying. No woman should ever be subjected to this type of obscene behavior and it is unbecoming of anybody seeking high office. In light of these comments, Donald Trump should step aside and allow our party to replace him with Mike Pence or another appropriate nominee from the Republican Party.

But not North Carolina Republicans, who are essentially telling voters that they wouldn’t let their wives and daughters in the same room with this vile creature, but sure, what the hell, let him in the Oval Office. Because saying otherwise might cost them the support of Trump’s most rabid fans.

That is the very definition of political cowardice.

But the worst possible response came from Michele Nix, vice chairman of the N.C. Republican Party, who took this opportunity to bash North Carolina’s transgender community and promote HB 2. Congrats, Michele. You’ve just won the INDY’s Dipshit of the Year Award. Once we collect enough dog excrement to fill a paper bag, we’ll mail you your trophy.
Luckily for Trump, he has some time to let this all blow over.

Oh wait, there’s a debate Sunday night?