Doing the Necessary
by Deacon Blues
After watching the debacle at the Nevada Democratic Party event over the weekend, the lack of a strong response from Bernie Sanders to the behavior of his supporters, his and his campaign’s continuing rhetoric against both Hillary Clinton and an allegedly “corrupt” Democratic National Committee, it is easy for me to give the middle finger to Sanders and his supporters. But it is also easy for me to give the middle finger to all of America for even considering voting for Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton, if a new (God help us) Fox News poll is to be believed. I would lose my faith in both America and our current electoral and media institutions should this come to pass this November.
Having said all of that, Hillary finds herself flailing about in her efforts to fight a two-front war against both Sanders and Trump. She can moan all she wants that Trump isn’t qualified, and the respectable parts of the media can make that case as well. But the simple truth is that the right wing media has poisoned the American electorate so much that large parts of them would actually act upon their hatred for both government and Hillary by voting for a reality TV show host. That is less a commentary on the flawed Hillary than it is a sad commentary on what Sanders, Trump, and the media have done leading up to this choice in November. It’s Hillary’s job, and yes obligation to deal with the facts on the ground and work with them, and not seek an ideal that isn’t achievable anymore, if it ever was.
No matter the disgust I’ve increasingly felt for Sanders and his supporters over their tactics and rhetoric, and no matter what I think of their alleged commitment to the Democratic Party and apparent willingness to damage it for their own purposes, the truth is that Hillary needs to unite the party now to save the country from Trump. She cannot afford to have the party face internal fissures and a hostile force from within willing to sink it for their own ends later. We can debate later Sanders’ rise and the true agenda and source of his supporters, but what needs to happen now is for Hillary to explore having Sanders be her running mate, and have him either accept it or decline it. Yes, if this were a different electoral cycle, there would be better running mate choices and better qualified people to be her partner, but for many reasons this isn’t and won’t be such an electoral cycle.
She needs to be able to say “we are offering a united Democratic Party and a Congress willing to work on solving the real problems that face the country, and the world. If you are still so angry with government and against me that you would vote for a reality TV host to be Commander in Chief, that is your decision and your responsibility.”
Trump: No Tax Returns From Me
by Deacon Blues
The Donald says he will not release his tax returns before the election, if at all. He claims that he cannot do so because he is undergoing an audit, which is a lie. He then pivoted to say that he won't release his tax returns because he doesn't believe voters are interested.
Now, it is true that those supporting The Donald aren't interested in this issue, because they only care about integrity and authenticity, and . . . . . oh, wait. Well, let's just say they don't care if Trump is a bald-faced liar. All they care about is that he stomps on Hillary and brown people. If he's a scumbag wholly unqualified to be Commander Chief, so be it.
Trump's reasons for not releasing his returns speak volumes. He clearly feels that whatever is in those returns would affect voting behavior among those not currently drinking his Kool-Aid. Trump already knows his sheeple will come out and vote for Mussolini if they could. But he also knows he needs more than the sheeple to stop the Democrats in November, and whatever is in those tax returns apparently jeopardizes new voters coming to him.
His true believers don't care, but the rest of us might care to find out what Trump actually pays in taxes, what he claims for offsets and business expenses (like legal settlements and tax havens), and how much he overstates his own wealth, which would call into question his trustworthiness at a time when he smears Hillary on the same issue. But Trump cannot afford for potential voters to see that he really is no different from the establishment Wall Street types and politicians he purports not to be.
The Insults Continue
by Deacon Blues
If this is any indication, Donald Trump has no interest in unifying the Republican Party, and anyone in the media who continues to peddle this nonsense is nothing more than a Trump whore. Leopards do not change their spots, folks.
Trump is so convinced of his own righteousness, especially in front of his fawning acolytes, that he will drive the establishment Republicans to run a third-party candidacy against him.
by Deacon Blues
Trump actually tweeted today on Cinco de Mayo that he loved Hispanics with a picture of him eating a Taco bowl.
I'm not kidding. And then he told Paul Ryan that he wasn't ready to support Ryan's agenda either.
Trust me, this will be great.
Ryan Plays Cute
by Deacon Blues
One of the many benefits of having Donald Trump hung around the GOP's neck over the next six months already became apparent earlier today when House Speaker Paul Ryan said he wasn't ready to support Trump. Ryan dug the hole a little deeper when he said that it was up to Trump to unify the party.
Ryan, like Ted Cruz is widely credited by a fawning Beltway media with being a smart Republican, when in fact he and Cruz are just two more overrated slugs sucking in a GOP cesspool. Ryan has managed to throw an anvil around the neck of House GOP incumbents this year. If he subsequently endorses Trump, he ties all his caucus incumbents to Trump, dooming them in at least two dozen districts around the country and giving the House back to the Democrats. If he refuses to endorse Trump, he enrages the base against both him and his caucus members who will then be forced to suck up to Trump, which again will give the House back to the Democrats.
The Sky Is Not Falling
by Deacon Blues
While watching BernieTV last night (Oh, sorry, I meant MSNBC), I heard once again that Donald Trump would be a serious threat to Hillary in typical Democratic blue-collar states like Pennsylvania, and that the GOP’s high turnout to date was a real problem. I already knew when I heard this that it was utter crap on both counts, as the NYT’s Nate Cohn pointed out in today’s paper:
Mrs. Clinton’s strength among young, nonwhite and well-educated voters would be enough to make her a favorite. The G.O.P. path to victory without adding some of these voters is narrow. The Republicans would need to do nearly as well among white voters as Ronald Reagan did in his 18-point re-election landslide in 1984 merely to fight to a draw in today’s far more diverse country. Nonwhite voters could make up nearly 30 percent of the electorate in 2016, up from 14 percent in 1984.
But what raises the possibility of a more decisive defeat for Mr. Trump is that he is struggling to reunite the voters who supported Mr. Romney — especially white women and white college-educated voters.
Yet you wouldn’t know that from watching BernieTV.
On Inauguration Day, he would go to a “beautiful” gala ball or two, but focus mostly on rescinding Obama executive orders on immigration and calling up corporate executives to threaten punitive measures if they shift jobs out of the United States.
And by the end of his first 100 days as the nation’s 45th leader, the wall with Mexico would be designed, the immigration ban on Muslims would be in place, the audit of the Federal Reserve would be underway and plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act would be in motion.
With parts of the GOP already telling us they’ll bolt and vote for Hillary, can we please embargo any more alarmist talk until we get closer to the conventions and see how much Trump hurts himself?
Giddiness Over Trump, With Caveats
With the GOP doing the unthinkable and handing Donald Trump their nomination and control of their party, Democrats and Hillary Clinton should be giddy tonight. And I still think the giddiness is warranted. But Hillary needs to confront some realities and adopt some changes.
First, Bernie Sanders is committed to winning California at all costs. Bernie is better organized in this state and has been on the ground much longer than the Clinton campaign. I think he will win California. If he does, you can count on a full-scale war up until Philadelphia. Make no mistake: no matter what he says, he and his supporters are committed to taking her down, no matter what it does to the party in November. I can attest to this from my own personal interactions with them.
Hillary needs to accept that and deal with it. And one way to deal with that, is to show him some respect, but to also start referring to Bernie and Trump in the same sentence. Both Bernie and Trump share some inconvenient truths: they are both committed to her defeat, both aren’t Democrats, and both are wholly unqualified to be president. As such, in her messaging, she should start referring to them in the same sentence.
Also, with two very unpopular people in the race, Hillary needs to accomplish the near-impossible, which is to avoid getting in the gutter with Trump while trying to improve her favorables. This would mean eliminating to the degree possible the things she does in her mannerisms that drive detractors crazy. She needs to present herself and talk like the levelheaded adult in the room, without screaming and without condescension, but keep drawing the distinctions with a boorish disaster like Trump. But she also needs to point out that she may not always agree with Sanders on things like the minimum wage, and somehow find a way to put herself between the two of them. And again, she needs to remind people that the only thing standing in the way of the nation’s first woman president is Trump, and Bernie.
Trump Sends in the Goons
by Deacon Blues
The GOP race is about to get even uglier if Cruz now is being confronted at his appearances by Trump's agitators. If Trump and his supporters think that they can shut down Cruz with direct taunts and threats, then Cleveland is about to get even worse than we thought.
Assuming this goon is a legitimate Trump supporter and not planted by Cruz himself, and if this goon is representative of Trump's fringe base, imagine the reaction if the GOP somehow deprives Trump of the nomination at the convention.
And imagine these same goons trying to do this to Hillary's crowds in a general election, and what that would do for the GOP brand.