"As he headed to Huntsville, Ala., in a last-ditch effort to lift the floundering campaign of Sen. Luther Strange, President Trump was fuming — feeling dragged along by GOP senators who had pleaded with him to go and increasingly unenthusiastic about Strange, whom he described to aides as loyal but ‘low energy.’
His agitation only worsened on the flight back last Friday. Trump bemoaned the headlines he expected to see once Strange was defeated — that he had stumbled and lost his grip on ‘my people,’ as he calls his core voters. He also lamented the rally crowd’s tepid response to the 6-foot-9 incumbent he liked to call ‘Big Luther.’
‘Trump was never fully behind Strange to begin with,’ former Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele said Wednesday after Strange was trounced in Tuesday’s GOP primary in Alabama. ‘But the party coaxed and cajoled him to get on the Strange train, and he did.’
For Trump, the trip to Alabama marked the dispiriting start to one of the lowest and perhaps most damaging stretches of his already troubled presidency, leaving him further weakened and isolated with few ways out of the thicket of challenges he faces, according to a half-dozen people close to him interviewed on Wednesday."