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President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump look at supporters before boarding Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. (AP Photo / Manuel Balce Ceneta)

The shift to minority status is always difficult, prompting debates over who is to blame for losing the last election. But the process is especially intense as Republicans confront profound questions about what the party stands for without Donald Trump in charge. 

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President Donald Trump delivers remarks about American energy production during a visit to the Double Eagle Energy Oil Rig, Wednesday, July 29, 2020, in Midland, Texas. (AP Photo / Tony Gutierrez)

President Donald Trump, lagging in the polls and grappling with deepening economic and public health crises, on Thursday floated the startling idea of delaying the Nov. 3 presidential election.