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Power Sheet: Could the RNC Turn Its Back on Donald Trump?

Writer Tory Newmyer (@torynewmyer) is filling in for Geoff Colvin this week.

This is what a full-blown panic looks like. More than 75 Republicans, including former lawmakers and senior White House officials, have added their names to a letter urging the Republican National Committee to abandon Donald Trump, the Washington Post reports. Their argument is strategic: Trump is hurtling toward a devastating loss in the presidential race and the party should do what it can now to salvage its Congressional majorities by dedicating all of its resources to them instead. But it’s also the latest in a series of brutal assessments of Trump’s candidacy from GOP elders, who in the letter cite their nominee’s “divisiveness, recklessness, incompetence, and record-breaking unpopularity” and point to his habit of “deliberately and repeatedly lying about scores of issues, large and small.” The letter’s organizers are still gathering signatures and aim to deliver it next week.

There’s a real chance the RNC heeds their request. Party chairman Reince Priebus raised the possibility with Trump in a phone call earlier this month, TIME reports in its new cover story. Trump had just gone out of his way to decline endorsing House Speaker Paul Ryan, a close friend of Priebus, in his primary. The GOP boss told the nominee that internal polling showed he was on his way to losing the election and explained the RNC has a responsibility to all the party’s candidates. The two camps are set to meet today in Orlando in what one campaign source described to Politico as an “emergency meeting.”

Recall that this week was supposed to tee up Trump’s latest “pivot” to a more measured general election mode, featuring the candidate cranking down the bombast and sticking to the script. That began Monday with his economic address in Detroit — delivered without incident from a teleprompter — and lasted until early that evening, when Trump returned to his Twitter account. He’s since suggested “Second Amendment people” could take matters into their own hands to stop a President Hillary Clinton from appointing liberal judges and insisted for days that President Obama literally founded ISIS before reversing course Friday, calling it sarcasm. The agenda for today’s Orlando huddle reportedly includes how to goose the campaign’s ground game. But there’s no mechanical fix for the problem at the top of the operation

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What We’re Reading Today

EU opens full-scale anti-trust probe over DuPont…
…Dow Chemical merger. The European Union plans to take a closer look at how the merger could impact competition in crop production, seeds and petrochemicals. The investigation won’t necessarily put in jeopardy the deal between Andrew Liveris‘s Dow and Edward Breen‘s DuPont, which will create a company with a $122 billion market cap before splitting into three separate organizations after the merger. But the inquiry could very well lead to more concessions, forcing the two sides to sell some assets. WSJ

Clinton lays out her economic plans 
In a speech, countering Donald Trump‘s economic vision earlier this week, Hillary Clinton laid out her ideas for tuition-free colleges, simplifying taxes and creating a public option for healthcare. Clinton attacked Trump’s tax plan, which she said would only benefit his own family, while agreeing with him about not passing the Trans-Pacific Partnership. But on trade, she added that the goal isn’t to cut the U.S. off from the world, but to make trade deals work better. Fortune

Macy’s to shutter 100 stores 
The closings represent about 15% of the total department store locations. The move by CEO Terry Lundgren comes as Macy’s reported its sixth consecutive quarterly decline in sales. Macy’s has struggled to grow revenues as shoppers move to online outlets, like Amazon. Instead, Lundgren says the company will focus on the well-performing stores and improve its technology capabilities. CNNMoney

Obama Administration finds funds for Zika fight
Annoyed by the delay in Congress to pass action to fund a response to Zika, the Obama administration has moved money around within the Health and Human Services to provide $81 million to the cause. HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell says the money will help fund vaccine development, but she also noted to Congress last week that the effort needs about $538 million over the next year.  Washington Post

Building a Better Leader

The state of the economy…
…has a dramatic impact on how willing co-workers are to help in the office. When the economy turns for the worse, so does employees’ resolve to work together. Insead Knowledge

If you’re having trouble keeping black executives…
…maybe it’s time to think about your company culture, and how it could be adding pressure and barriers to their work life. It’s okay to admit race may play a role, says organizational psychologist Dr. Lawrence James, Jr. Fortune

It’s fine to check job postings regularly
It will provide you with insight on what types of companies are hiring and what roles they’re seeking. Careerealism

The Unfriendly Skies

Delta pilot talks take a break
As Ed Bastian‘s company continues to respond to the computer outage that cancelled thousands of flights, Delta’s labor negotiations with its pilots have also yet to take off. The National Mediation Board has called for a break between the two sides due to a lack of progress. The pilots have asked for a 40% pay raise over the next three years. The sides will speak with mediators again on Aug. 26. Fortune

Southwest delays will cost $54 million
The computer outage last month that led to the cancellation of over 2,000 flights will cost Gary Kelly‘s company between $54 million and $82 million in lost revenues and additional costs. Delta experienced an outage as well this week, leading to speculation that the costs could reach similar figures. Chicago Tribune

American Airlines to offer free entertainment
Doug Parker
‘s company has made all in-flight entertainment free of charge, including new movie releases, games and music. It’s the second large carrier to make the move, following Delta’s decision in June. USA Today

Up or Out

Famed investor Bill Miller is parting from Legg Mason.  Baltimore Sun

Arianna Huffington will step away from the now Verizon-owned Huffington Post.  NYT

Airbus Group has hired Luc Hennekens as CIO.  WSJ

Fortune Reads and Videos

Former NFL player is arrested for $10 million Ponzi Scheme
The former Philadelphia Eagles player, Merrill Robertson Jr., has been accused of promising investors returns of 10%-20%, but used the money to pay back other clients and expenses. Fortune

Pokemon Go creator Niantic is now…
…the world’s most popular games developer in the world. The success of the game kicked aside Candy Crush‘s maker King. Fortune

Twitter battles Buzzfeed
The two sides are disagreeing over a report from Buzzfeed that argued former and current company leaders have done little to fight abuse on the social site. Fortune

McDonald’s will offer pumpkin spiced lattes…
…at the end of August. It appears to want to beat Starbucks to the punch. Fortune

Happy Birthday

Investor George Soros turns 86 today.  Biography

French President Francois Hollande turns 62.  Biography

Fidel Castro will turn 90 tomorrow.  Biography

Chair of the Federal Reserve Janet Yellen celebrates 70 on Saturday.  Biography

Kevin Plank, founder and CEO of Under Armour, turns 44 on Saturday.  Crunchbase

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@ryanderous
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