January 6, 2016

"Is The GOP Establishment Blowing Its Anti-Trump Campaign?"

A FiveThirtyEight chat. Excerpt.
clare.malone: I feel like there is soooo much stuff to make a good negative ad on Trump, though: Allegations of spousal abuse, bankruptcies, etc. Television is a powerful medium — sure it could backfire, I guess, but the fact that no one has spun all those things together, just to try it out, remains surprising.

natesilver: But Trump is such a target-rich environment that it’s a bit like an airplane spewing out chaff. Becomes hard to know what you’re really aiming for.

micah: The paradox of choice....

natesilver: ... [Y]ou could certainly hit Trump on the fact that he’s not a very reliable conservative. Run a campaign around how he’s an opportunist and “just another politician” who will say anything to get elected. How he’s not a true conservative — in fact, not any kind of conservative at all.

harry: What is ideology? We often talk about it on a left to right spectrum, but it’s often just as much about insider vs. outsider. No one cares about Trump’s conservative record or lack thereof. What you want to hit him on is being politics as usual, if you want to defeat him. His support right now is actually weakest among the most conservative voters....

99 comments:

Michael Fitzgerald said...

538 now a political arm of ESPN, brought in for the statistics that support progressive politics. Piss on all of them.

traditionalguy said...

They cannot hit Trump because Trump has carpet bombed them with the insider branding faster than they can dress up their old narratives about him being a bad man.

After Franklin Graham and the Jerry Falwell, Jr have endorse a good man for his courage, it's too late to drag him through the old bad man narratives.

Saint Croix said...

What's hilarious is Trump's attack on Cruz, the Canadian. Also, don't forget, Cuba!

What I want to know is when there's going to be a federal investigation into the potty training in the Trump household in Queens in the late 1940's. What happened with the potty training? Could be anything. Something dirty though. I'm sure there's some dirt there. Really disgusting stuff happening in the Trump house in Queens, in the late 1940's. Look into it. That's all I'm saying.

Hagar said...

Trump is not a Democrat.
Electing a Republican of any kind, even a RINO, is the only hope for cleaning out the bureaucracies to any extent at all.

Tank said...

Hey stupids at 538, people have noticed things like:

“Norway: Oslo Police: ‘We Have Lost the City,’” Poqari News, December 31, 2015 (thanks to Pamela Geller):


The article below is about the apocalyptic level of culturally-enriched violence in Grønland, a district of the city of Oslo.

Grønland is only two subway stops from the Parliament, and one from the Central Station, fairly close to the government offices that were bombed by Breivik.

It looks like Karachi, Basra, and Mogadishu all rolled into one. People sell drugs openly just next to the Grønland subway station.

It’s not Norway or Europe anymore, except when there is welfare money to be collected. The police have largely given up. Early in 2010 Aftenposten stated that there are sharia patrols in this area, and gay couples are assaulted and chased away. “Immigrant Fatima Tetouani says that ‘Grønland is more Muslim than Morocco.’”

Readers should remember that Aftenposten, which is the largest newspaper in the Oslo region, is normally pro-Islamic and very Multicultural.

Sturla Nøstvik (36) did not suspect any danger when the barrel of a pistol was smashed into his forehead. That was the beginning of fifty minutes of hell as a hostage of the robbers.

The women are being raped at night in Oslo, and the men are robbed more than ever.

In just the past ten years more than 4,000 people have been robbed in the town center and the area of the Grønland police station [an immigrant ghetto]. Most of them are young men. Sturla Nøstvik is robbery-victim 351 from Grønland just from this year, the same period in which around fifty assault-rapes have been reported in Oslo. The robbers play on fear, violence, and severe threats that leave a mark on the victims. Police superintendent Inge Sundeng in Grønland describes them as the “somewhat-forgotten victims”.

The police visited Sturla Nøstvik in the emergency room after the robbery. They told Nøstvik that a gang of robbers had committed many similar robberies in Grünerløkka and surrounding areas in thee past weeks. They told him that everybody should have the right to feel safe, but that they had no way of halting the robberies. “We have lost the city,” they said…


And they don't want it here.

Michael K said...

This will all recede into the carpet once the FBI recommends indictment for Hillary. or the Director could resign in protest.

I guess we will see.

eric said...

Every person in the world has a whole host of things you can hit them on. Trump isn't an exception. He just doesn't take damage. Wearing a powerful suit of armor, that man is.

I can't figure out the complaint that he isn't conservative. Or conservative enough.

He is the only candidate who can get anything conservative done. Tighten our borders? No one else will be able to do that. Repeal obamacare?/They can't do that now. Lower taxes and spending? Promises promises.

At least with Trump there is a chance. Anyone else, its just talk.

Quaestor said...

The GOP Establishment just blew it. Period. Long before Trump announced his ambition. Careerists like Boehner, Lindsay Graham, and Mitch McConnell are all guilty of looking after their personal interests at the expense of the larger interests of the nation. Many Republican voters believe they have been betrayed, thus they are disinclined to support anyone who can be seen as on the Cursus Honorum, which includes governors, unfortunately for Walker and Christie. To his credit Ted Cruz fought the Establishment and got painted savagely as a dangerous crank by the Washington press corps as result. He fought and lost in a noble cause. If he'd won he would be leading Trump today.

Dude1394 said...

The RNC ran ads to take out Ross Perot when he ran against Clinton. It made me sick to my stomach. I voted for Ross that year (and next) and voted every single democrat I could pull a lever for.

The RNC had better think good, long and hard about trying to pick sides here. Those Trump voters could just as well get pissed off and best case stay home, worst case vote democrat up and down the board.

MadisonMan said...

I'd love to see a similar chat on the many shortcomings of Hillary!! Can I expect to soon?

garage mahal said...

Didn't Trump cheat on Ivana Trum] with Marla Maples? I'm surprised the liberal media isn't bringing that up.

Nonapod said...

I can't figure out the complaint that he isn't conservative. Or conservative enough.

Well, to be fair, at various times in the past he has advocated for government healthcare, a woman’s right to an abortion, and an assault weapons ban. Whether or not he'd still openly be an advocate for all that stuff, or whether or not it actually matters to his supporters are different discussions.

H said...

I see what you did: you cut and pasted from the original website, then changed all references from "hillary" to "trump". Very nice trolling technique.

Jim Gust said...

If the GOP establishment really wants to stop Trump, they should endorse him. His distance from the establishment is his greatest strength. So the more they attack him, on any basis whatsoever, the stronger he gets, it proves he is not them.

Brilliant positioning, and I'm not a Trump fan.

The GOP establishment needs some serious soul-searching to begin to understand why their base hates them so much, and then they need to change course.

elkh1 said...

Michael K said... This will all recede into the carpet once the FBI recommends indictment for Hillary. or the Director could resign in protest.

His resignation will be on NYT p.36, will be mentioned in the MSM 10:00 pm newscast right before they signed off. Then we can wait for Prez Hillary to appoint a more amendable Director.

elkh1 said...

"...he’s an opportunist and “just another politician” who will say anything to get elected."

Who isn't? Which opportunist is better than Trump?

Trump might have abused his numerous wives, but he was never accused of rape, yet. Trump has bankrupted three times to shaft his investors, but he hasn't broken the law like Hillary did.

A choice between Hillary and Trump? Bet a lot of voters will stay home.

rehajm said...

When there's no data to manipulate into a bludgeon break out a whiny lefty bitchfest.

Michael said...

They are confused that the narrative has disappeared in Trump's slipstream. No more safe places. No more hands-up-don't-shoot, no more rape culture, no more wide open borders, no more laws that aren't laws, no more ROP. People are finding it possible to tell the truth out loud. It scares them.

jr565 said...

Just coopt Trumps message; and then say he's not realistic about his proposals. But you would be.
The big driver in all of this is his immigration push and his ability to speak plainly and tell people to go f themselves. He speaks a bit TOO plainly. but the message is one that can be coopted in a more nuanced fashion. Do that.

jr565 said...

eric wrote:
He is the only candidate who can get anything conservative done. Tighten our borders? No one else will be able to do that. Repeal obamacare?/They can't do that now. Lower taxes and spending? Promises promises.

Why do you think Trump and trump alone would be able to do these things? He has to deal with congress just like everyone else running.
He cant just DO STUFF. And saying you will simply get it done is not a realistic policy proposal.

SteveR said...

As I've seen frequently from many lefty friends who wail that Hillary is not as good as Sanders but she's better than any Republican, Trump is no conservative but he's not a Hillary.

We know what we'll get with her, can he be worse? The unwarranted elevation of Obama to fill the role of "president who assuages my guilt", makes anything possible in 2016. Can we rerally expect some ideological pedigree when we've punted on qualification and experience already?

Sebastian said...

"No one cares about Trump’s conservative record or lack thereof. What you want to hit him on is being politics as usual, if you want to defeat him. His support right now is actually weakest among the most conservative voters...." No one cares if Trump is conservative but his support is actually weakest among conservative voters. Because logic.

grackle said...

Us Trump supporters chuckle at these irrelevant ruminations of political conventional wisdom.

I feel like there is soooo much stuff to make a good negative ad on Trump, though: Allegations of spousal abuse, bankruptcies, etc.

Bill Clinton: Multiple allegations of sexual predation and rape over a period of many years, culminating in the Lewinsky revelations.

Donald Trump: One allegation only in regards to a single alleged incident, from a wife during a divorce, which was later retracted by that same woman. Hmmm – I do not see any ground-shaking negative here – only wishful thinking on the parts of Silver and Malone.

Clearly if Trump is attacked by the Clintons or their surrogates for anything having to do with women Trump’s next move is to attack the Clintons with examples more substantial than a single incident which was later retracted by the accuser – to the Clintons’ obvious detriment. The Clintons know this and that’s why the Clintons have shut their pie traps about our future POTUS. Are Malone and Silver supposed to be experts?

And the bankruptcies? They are legal and common in the business community. Bankruptcies are often seen to be a good way to shed deadwood from a struggling business and help it become profitable again. Show me where Trump broke a law and I’ll sit up and notice but 3 or 4 bankruptcies in his long business history are nothing.

How he’s not a true conservative — in fact, not any kind of conservative at all.

I do not believe that ideological labels matter much this campaign season. Maybe, just maybe they’ve never really mattered except to the conventionally wise. Trump himself has never claimed to be a conservative – he’s only claimed to be a Republican – which is obviously true since he’s the frontrunner for the GOP nomination. This is a lackluster negative if it’s a negative at all.

rcocean said...

Hitting Trump for "Not being a conservative" won't work - because no thinks the GOPe or anyone significant in the race except Cruz is "a conservative".

Christie, Rubio, Jeb, Carly, Kasich, and Paul have no credibility when attacking Trump from the Right.

And that's even more true of the Establishment. After pushing McCain, Romney, and Dole and attacking anyone who was conservative in 1996, 2008, and 2012 as "Right wing extremists" who "can't attract moderates", they too have no credibility.

rcocean said...

And I agree with MF. 538 is really a liberal site that uses stats to push the liberal agenda.

Everything they write has to evaluated for bias before it can be used.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

What eric said.

Trumps appeal is that he voices what a lot of people think and convinces them that he will actually fight for them.

They don't believe that about any of the professional politicians who are running.

mccullough said...

Trump is a celebrity real estate developer, not a politician. Hard to hit him on politics as usual when he's not a politician.

And what politician has proposed to deport all the illegals, build a wall on the southern border and make Mexico pay for it, ban Muslim immigration, at least temporarily? What politician has criticized members of both parties so harshly? Trump has gone after Obama and W, the Clintons, Jeb, Sanders, etc. These 538 nerds are clueless

MikeR said...

"He is the only candidate who can get anything conservative done. Tighten our borders? No one else will be able to do that. Repeal obamacare?/They can't do that now. Lower taxes and spending? Promises promises.
At least with Trump there is a chance. Anyone else, its just talk."
Ridiculous. Where does this nonsense come from? They can't do anything now because there is a Democratic president. Elect Ted Cruz, or Marco Rubio, and all these things become possible.
Or, you can throw a tantrum and vote for someone who doesn't actually care about any of this stuff, and lose when it was your time to win.

Mike Sylwester said...

Donald Trump is speaking for the Republican voters who object to:

* massive illegal immigration

* legal import of temporary workers

* export of US jobs

Those voters are focusing on those issues. Arguments about other issues will not change their minds about supporting Trump.

Chuck said...

What is this "GOP Establishment"? Do they have meetings? Do you get a card? (I'd like a card, and a decoder ring!) Who is the President of The GOP Establishment? I'd like to send him my resume'.

viator said...

Caught a little of Glen Beck today and he named the progressives in the presidential race: Hillary, Christie, Trump. He agreed with Bernie's own characterization, socialist.

It might surprise some but of course Teddy Roosevelt, GOP, was one of the first leading progressives. You could make a case Nixon was one also. Many of the progressive's favorite government bureaucracies can be traced back to the Nixon administration.

Beck also mentioned the dreaded label national socialist when referring to Trump.

George Grady said...

If Trump is willing to bring "You're fired!" to the Washington bureaucratic machine, that one positive would overwhelm a lot of negatives.

MikeR said...

"And I agree with MF. 538 is really a liberal site that uses stats to push the liberal agenda.
Everything they write has to evaluated for bias before it can be used."
Welcome to the real world. Everyone is biased. You are too.
But 538 is pretty good. If you can only deal with sources that have the same biases as you, you are going to get a mighty skewed view of the world.

jr565 said...

I've heard how trump is actually appealing to. Lot of democrats. Which makes me think he is actually a false flag designed to suck the vacuum out of all other actually legitimate candidates. All of his popularity shows in polls. How accurate are they? Are the people giving high poll numbers actually the dems that they say are supporting him? And are they supporting him because they agree with him, or are they supporting him because they don't. Once all the legitimate repubs were wiped out, will trumps support also drop out?


I'm not one to fall for conspiracy theories, but I'm really starting to think Trumpusm is a media driven operation. Notice how in the debates the press keep asking the candidates about Trump? They are directing this. Put all your focus on trump, then say polls suggest he is getting all the votes. The other candidates run out of money fighting the mirage.

n.n said...

American conservatism begins with The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution.

As for abortion rites, once repent.

We change our outlook as we mature with increased and improved knowledge, experience, and confidence. The transition from childhood to adulthood is predicated on our adoption of a stable, conservative philosophy that promotes self-moderation and personal responsibility.

If children ruled the world, we would have a pro-choice or selective principles quasi-religion, and resumption of primitive abortion rites.

The Democrats are fundamentally corrupt. The Republicans are exceptionally corrupt. Perhaps Trump will be the father figure that they both so dearly need.

Archie Waugh said...

"Why do you think Trump and trump alone would be able to do these things? He has to deal with congress just like everyone else running."

The key word there is "deal". Nobody does it better, at least so he tells us. At least he'd make the effort, unlike the current Dictator in Chief who doesn't even try.
What's been missing is leadership.

FullMoon said...

garage mahal said...

Didn't Trump cheat on Ivana Trum] with Marla Maples? I'm surprised the liberal media isn't bringing that up.
No shit? That really happened? Has never been mentioned? Wow !!! Thanks for the info,
and say, are you aware he had bankruptcies? I ain't lyin'. I am surprised the liberal media isn't bringing that up. And, what about that hairpeice, huh?
Why is that never mentioned? Somethin' fishy goin' on, fer shur!


Hagar said...

Trump is likely to act like a politician, i.e., go where the people seems to want to go, whereas Hillary! is stuck with Clinton, Inc., and the boys will want the good times to roll again.

eric said...

Blogger jr565 said...
eric wrote:
He is the only candidate who can get anything conservative done. Tighten our borders? No one else will be able to do that. Repeal obamacare?/They can't do that now. Lower taxes and spending? Promises promises.

Why do you think Trump and trump alone would be able to do these things? He has to deal with congress just like everyone else running.
He cant just DO STUFF. And saying you will simply get it done is not a realistic policy proposal.


Sure he can. Haven't you been paying attention? The President has a lot more power than you and I thought he did.

While a Cruz administration would revert back to a less powerful administration, I don't think Trump would.

Whereas Democrats will destroy the filibuster when it gets in the way, and Republicans will put it back for the Democrats sake, Trump doesn't seem like the type to me.

He probably wants everyone to play by the same rules.

And how do you get Democrats to agree to play by the same rules? You give them a taste of their own medicine. Good and hard.

jr565 said...

As an example of what I mean about dems driving a lot of this Trump coverage there's this:
http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2016/01/06/supporters-seek-to-persuade-democrats-to-ditch-and-switch-for-donald-trump/?_r=0

How genuine is this call to drop the dems and switch to trump from dems? What has Trump done that would make people be so insistent on switching parties? False flag operation?
I realize that there is a cult of personality around him because he's rich and famous. But is there that much of a cult of personality round him? Or is this just media/democratic driven?

Terry said...

Getting moderates and conservatives to vote for a non-conservative republican has not worked in past presidential elections. G.W. Bush lost the popular vote in 2000, and in 2004 W managed to get a bare majority (50.7%) against John Kerry, who was not a strong candidate.

Chuck said...

I do not understand why Trump is not vulnerable as a fake conservative.

Trump has no record of actually doing anything conservative; for standing up in a pinch for conservative ideas. Every single one of the so-called GOP Establishment candidates has. Imperfectly, perhaps. But infinitely more than Trump.

Then there's Trump's record of past statements exposing him as a political drifter and opportunist extraordinaire.

Does it matter WHO does the exposing of Trump on these issues? Is it any more or less potent, if it is Jeb Bush, or George Will, or a Fox News Channel program host, or a National Review columnist, or some anonymous blogger? Isn't the important thing what was said and whether the quote is accurate? (In the case of the fantastical Trump flip flops, Trump is on video for all to see.)

Fernandinande said...

Trump in the news!

Leading U.S. scholar Donald Trump denounces reporter Meghan Kelly as "poisonous bimbo," for slanders against Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un.

U.S. businessman Donald Trump praised by Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un as master strategist and wily adversary, worthy of peoples' respect.

Foreign Ministry weighing offers from Dennis Rodman, Donald Trump, and Kim Kardashian to mediate present crisis with south Korean puppets.

lgv said...

Once Silver gets away from true statistical analysis, he becomes just another member of the liberal echo chamber, like the journ-o-list. He adds no value to any discussion. Statistically, he spews the liberal line 102.3% of the time.

Chuck said...

grackle - You are setting the bar pretty low, if you are saying that Donald Trump's personal foibles are no worse than Bill and Hillary Clinton's.

damikesc said...

Didn't Trump cheat on Ivana Trum] with Marla Maples? I'm surprised the liberal media isn't bringing that up.

Did he do it with somebody subordinate to him in employment?

I'm betting that is why they're not.

I do not believe that ideological labels matter much this campaign season. Maybe, just maybe they’ve never really mattered except to the conventionally wise. Trump himself has never claimed to be a conservative – he’s only claimed to be a Republican – which is obviously true since he’s the frontrunner for the GOP nomination. This is a lackluster negative if it’s a negative at all.

Given the budget passed by Paul Ryan, being a Republican is, apparently, a wide berth. Nothing Trump wants would compare to the giveaway Ryan passed.

Mark said...

Obama was an "outsider" candidate too.

To look on the absolute worst angle, Obama hasn't really seemed to care much about accomplishing anything as President -- other than persecuting Republicans and any stray Democrats who might say anything against The One. (Corey Booker learned to shut up about that stuff pretty quickly, so he got the Senate Seat, but he's notably low-profile when by rights he should be the Next Big Thing for the Democrats.)

To anyone who counters with Obamacare, all the heavy lifting on that came from the Congressional Democrats. Obama quite obviously would have signed anything that came to him and claimed victory.

Trump on the other hand likes to actually build things and put his name on them.

So yes, Trump could well be worse than Obama. Let that sink in for a moment.

Gahrie said...

The GOP Establishment hasn't figured out that they are the problem, and Trump is the solution, at least as far as a significant portion of the GOP base is concerned.

The GOP establishment has been telling the GOP base to suck it up and support their candidate for the sake of party loyalty and to defeat the Democrat. Many of Trump supporters think it is now time for them to take their own advice.

Gahrie said...

Why do you think Trump and trump alone would be able to do these things? He has to deal with congress just like everyone else running.
He cant just DO STUFF. And saying you will simply get it done is not a realistic policy proposal.


Have you been asleep the last seven years? Trump will have a pen, and what is worse, a true mandate from the people. He will make Obama look like a piker when it comes to flaunting the separation of powers. And to many of his supporters, that will be a feature, not a bug.

Trump is a rabblerousing demagogue, and he scares me. But I totally understand why peple are supporting him.

Gahrie said...

Who is the President of The GOP Establishment?

Given the omnibus just passed, it appears to be Ryan......

Francisco D said...

Hey Garage,

Did Trump rape Marla Maples, bite her lip and tell her to put some ice on it? Has he sexually assaulted women multiple times in his career? Did his wife go after those women to get them to shut up?

Do a little research and get back to me, dude. Hint: The Daily Kos does not have the answer.

- not a Trump supporter, but a supporter of intellectual honesty

Eric said...

Mike Sylwester is right. So far this election is about immigration and jobs. Time and again the Republican establishment has promised some action against illegal immigration and then failed to even attempt to deliver.

Personally, I think Trump will do the same thing, but I understand why people are willing to back him over proven liars.

Jim Sweeney said...

As to cheating, they are allegations and reckless ones at that. There's no evidence he did or, if he did, that was going on while he was married AND LIVING with Wife 1.

As to bankruptcies, Trump never signed any personal guaranties to investors who knew on the going in that there was a real risk of loss; there always is. And the purpose of a corporate form or business is to protect the personal assets of the management/shareholders and founders from a losing business. Even those vendors to whom the companies owed money can't collect. And all of that was known to all the creditors on the going in.

Trump did nothing improper - he just lost money.

Drago said...

Chuck: "I do not understand why Trump is not vulnerable as a fake conservative."

Because all the "real" conservatives have been giving Obama and Pelosi and Reid everything they ask for over the last 7+ years. Did you happen to catch the last budget "fight"?

Once the GOP decided to attack it's own conservative base and side with the dems across the board, any claims that anyone else is not a "real" conservative rings a bit hollow and has absolutely zero capability of moving any Trump supporters off their position.

You'll have to show why/how voting for a "real" conservative will yield any political/policy/rhetorical victories beyond what a Trump could deliver.

I think it's clear right now that electing Rubio will yield, within the first year, "comprehensive immigration reform" which will clearly amount to amnesty for about 30 million new 3rd world uneducated dem voters and the jig is up. Nothing else will matter.

Nothing at all.

Will Trump still do this? Possibly.

Will Rubio do this? Without question.

So who is the real conservative again and how can you tell?

If you are going to criticize Trump for not being a "real" conservative, you'll simply have to deal with all the other "not-real conservative" stuff others are doing. The fact that you aren't speaks volumes.

I must say Chuck, it's rare to see someone so doggedly insistent upon using hilariously counterproductive and self-defeating rhetorical tactics in an attempt to dissuade others from a particular course of action.

It borders on concern trolling, if not actually crossing that threshold.

Drago said...

Chuck: "What is this "GOP Establishment"? Do they have meetings? Do you get a card? (I'd like a card, and a decoder ring!) Who is the President of The GOP Establishment? I'd like to send him my resume'"

Ah yes. The no-such-thing-as-a-republican-establishment schtick.

Clever, in a garage-level sort of way.

John Henry said...

I'm a bit tired of hearing about Trump's bankruptcies.

1) He had 3 out of 100-110 companies. That is a 3% or better failure rate. Find me some other entrepreneurs who have done so well. For most new ventures, a 50% failure rate is considered acceptable. Not desirable, but better than average. Venture capitalists rule of thumb is that out of 20 investments, they will lose money on 10-15, break even on 2-3 and make enough on the rare home runs to make up for it. In consumer goods, 75-85% of all new products fail in 18 months.

2) Did anyone lose money on the 3 bankruptcies? All were chapter 11. That means that you restructure the debt and pay it back over longer time, convert debt to equity or something else. If you still can't make it you go into Chapter 7(?) and liquidate and debtors get back some fraction of the debt. I've gone looking and can't find evidence that anyone lost money in the bankruptcies, that they all worked out eventually. (Not counting that the debtors may not have wanted equity, that they wanted their money now etc. That may be a loss. Or maybe not)

3) If he was such a risk, how is he able to finance all these projects? These are not stupid people funding his properties. They know how to evaluate risk and reward. They would not be funding him if they could find other, better, perhaps less risky, investments.

Yup. Bring on his bankruptcies. Is there anyone who doesn't know about them already? Is there anyone who cares? Perhaps if they do, they can bring on the folks who were hurt by them so they can explain how badly they got screwed and what a terrible person Trump is.

John Henry

MaxedOutMama said...

But is Trump's appeal to the voters based on his character, or the fact he is addressing voter concerns which the establishment will not?

I find it hard to believe, btw, that the well-explored marital difficulties are going to concern most voters, especially when one considers the Clinton situation. Compared to that it's just garden variety, honest, marital mix-and-match that is within the norm for American society. We may not admire it, but I doubt most would feel it disqualifies Trump for the presidency.

I'm just not convinced that most voters vote for the "purest" candidate. I don't think they care.

John Henry said...


Blogger Saint Croix said...

What's hilarious is Trump's attack on Cruz, the Canadian.

I'm not sure it was an attack. There is a serious question whether someone born outside the US, like Cruz, meets the natural born requirement. I've read arguments both ways and don't really know myself. Nobody does until the Supremes rule on it.

And you can bet that someone will figure out how to get standing and get it into the courts. That crazy dem senator from Florida has already said he would legally challenge his eligibility. There is a guy in Vermont right now suing to keep him off the ballot there as ineligible.

What happens if, in 2018, it finally works its way to the Supreme Court which finds that President Cruz is ineligible. Will all laws and regs he signed be null and void? Do we really want to lose a president mid-term?

So not really an attack, more like raising an important point to consider.

And consider this: With the exception of McCain and some of the founding fathers, we have never had a major party candidate born outside of the US. Sometimes tradition should be enough. The voluntary 2 term tradition for Prez worked just fine until FDR trampled it.

I am a really HUGE fan of Cruz. If this matter could be definitively cleared up, I would even send him some money. Last time I gave money to a pol was in 94. (Nethercutt to help defeat Foley)

Note that I disagree with Mick on this. I believe that anyone who is a Constitutional citizen (as opposed to a statutory one like Cruz) is a "natural born citizen" regardless of parentage.

John Henry

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Chuck said...I do not understand why Trump is not vulnerable as a fake conservative.

I've thought about that too, Chuck, and I think the difficulty comes down to the way that attack is normally made. Typically if I'm a (real) conservative candidate or pundit I'd get up and say "Donald Trump isn't really conservative, here is the evidence, don't trust him when he claims to be conservative" and that'd be it. Trump's whole campaign premise, it seems to me, is that he recognizes and acknowledges that people don't trust the government, don't trust the Media, and don't trust politicians in general--he agrees and says in effect that people're right not to trust 'em! Since that's true it matters a lot WHO makes that attack on Trump--if it comes from George Will Trump can dismiss it as an ineffective old-guard Media personality striking out at someone actually telling the truth and shaking things up. If the attack comes from a fellow candidate or (Repub) politician Trump can dismiss it as the Establishment that has repeatedly sold out the base striking out at someone who's willing to say unpopular things and get things done. If it's some pundit or Media personality making the charge, well, that one all but refutes itself, and Trump has done a good job of harnessing the distrust many on the Right already have for the Media.

It seems on the surface like an easy charge to make stick, but Trump has (intentionally or unintentionally) positioned himself well to resist that particular attack.

Chuck said...

"...the GOP decided to attack its own conservative base and side with dems [sic] across the board..."

Baloney. Here's what your hated "GOP establishment" prevented: a federal minimum wage; a telephone book of new financial regulations; Elizabeth Warren as a cabinet member, commanding the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; a climate change treaty; a new "assault weapons" ban and an entire chapter of new gun regulations; a prolonged and expanded Ex-Im Bank; a national regulatory slowdown of fracking; avoided the so-called "Paycheck Fairness Act"; a permanent treaty-level concession to Iran's nuclear development; an Obama abandonment of the sequester; et cetera.

Some of your compadres are probably mad that the 113th/114th Congresses haven't ended Obamacare and shut down the U.S. borders. But sometimes it isn't what you do (the GOP doesn't have the numbers to do those things), but what you prevent from being done.

Chuck said...

Drago -- Incidentally, I don't think I am trying to persuade you or the other Trumpsters. I'd like to win the debate, yes. Because I like to win. (Which is why a Trump nomination mortifies me, by the way.)

But more than anything, I am taunting you. Throwing down a marker. If Trump gets the nomination, I want to be able to howl, "I told you so!" after the Democrat landslide.

Sammy Finkelman said...

These people dont seem to understand anything. The way they want to attack Trump is mostly lame.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Trump (or someone like him) is what you get when people don't trust existing power structures.

People don't believe the Media is fair nor that it's telling them the truth. They see how illegal immigration--excuse me, undocumented migration--is covered and talked about in the Media and by business leaders and then they see what's going on in their local schools, streets, etc, and they conclude that the Media shouldn't be trusted.

People on the Right don't believe Republican party leaders and leading politicians are being honest with them, fighting for what the party says it believes, nor actually believing the thing they claim. Republican leaders talk about supporting limiting government, cutting costs, cutting programs, etc, and then aren't effective in doing so. The base gets rolled over and over again--one set of talking points during the campaign/when fundraising, another when it's time to pass laws--and is sick of it. The Tea party movement was in part a revolt against the Republican establishment, and Trump's tapped into some of that distaste for Republicans who've gone after Tea party types.

People don't trust the government. We don't think we're getting the truth about what the government is doing and how they're doing it, and we see in our own lives evidence that the government is more involved in what we do every day than ever before. The President dismisses ISIS as the JV team one day and a month later the government says ISIS is a clear danger and must be defeated. The IRS, EPA, Justice Department, and any number of other agencies seem to be beyond oversight and use their power to go after ideological opponents.

People don't trust the institutions they used to. Hell, look at the coverage Universities are getting lately--it's all caving to ridiculous protest demands, pushing a Obama Admin-supported Leftist agenda that denies male students basic rights, academics caught bullying students...and on and on. When you don't trust the institutions someone who gets on TV and says "this is all bullshit" can get a lot of applause. It's pretty clear that Trump doesn't have much of a plan of his own, but it seems like people are happy right now to see someone actually say some of the things they've thought and that alone can do a lot for his approval rating. Couple that with over-the-top attacks against him that he handles pretty well and you've got yourself a frontrunner.

Freeman Hunt said...

Trump's target-richness is only out-riched by Hillary.

Achilles said...

Chuck said...
"I do not understand why Trump is not vulnerable as a fake conservative.

Trump has no record of actually doing anything conservative; for standing up in a pinch for conservative ideas. Every single one of the so-called GOP Establishment candidates has. Imperfectly, perhaps. But infinitely more than Trump."

"What is this "GOP Establishment"? Do they have meetings? Do you get a card? (I'd like a card, and a decoder ring!) Who is the President of The GOP Establishment? I'd like to send him my resume'"

You can't really be that stupid. Nobody out here in real land gives two shits about conservative/liberal. The issue is DC vs. the country. Every poll that asks the question finds that people think the federal government is the biggest problem this country has.

All of the politicians running fall into the same failure. They try to use the government to solve problems except the one issue, immigration, which is it's only real job anyway. Rubio is a liar and a betrayer. He is raking in money from the plutarchs whose only goal is to erase our borders and import cheap labor. Cruz is acceptable ideologically but he is not the candidate we need.

Trump has destroyed the strangle hold the DC establishment had on "rational" discourse. We can actually discuss the fact that Islam is a fascist death cult and Sharia law is an abomination. We can discuss the fact that illegal immigration is driving down wages and spiking crime. DC needs to be cut down to size and the people who live there now making our lives miserable need to go get a real job.

My guess is you are a GOP "consultant" or "lobbyist" who makes a living off of political influence pedaling in DC or a government employee of some type.

eric said...

Blogger Chuck said...
"...the GOP decided to attack its own conservative base and side with dems [sic] across the board..."

Baloney. Here's what your hated "GOP establishment" prevented: a federal minimum wage; a telephone book of new financial regulations; Elizabeth Warren as a cabinet member, commanding the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; a climate change treaty; a new "assault weapons" ban and an entire chapter of new gun regulations; a prolonged and expanded Ex-Im Bank; a national regulatory slowdown of fracking; avoided the so-called "Paycheck Fairness Act"; a permanent treaty-level concession to Iran's nuclear development; an Obama abandonment of the sequester; et cetera.


Chuck, this is a big issue for me. I've been voting afraid for a very long time now. Afraid that if the Republicans don't block the Democrats bad things will descend upon America.

If they don't block Hillary's re-working of our healthcare, we will get terrible insurance laws.

If they don't pass DOMA, we will get gay marriage.

If they don't lower taxes we will get higher taxes.

And yet, it seems like playing prevent defense means the offense is going to score a touchdown, eventually. It's just going to take a little longer.

It's time to stop playing defense and go on offense, Chuck. And Trump appears to me the only candidate willing to do that.

Our defense posture has resulted in overtones window moving inexorably to the left. Slowly but surely. And all the normal Republican candidates say pretty much what you've said. We will stop the window from moving further left.

We need a candidate now who will move the window back to the right. Not just stop it from moving left.

garage mahal said...

Do a little research and get back to me, dude. Hint: The Daily Kos does not have the answer.

Trumpkins are so cute when they're mad.

Drago said...

Thats just great chuck. Well played.

The only problem is of course that I prefer Cruz and, though much less likely to win the nomination, Fiorina.

But, whatever.

Quaestor said...

Chuck wrote: But more than anything, I am taunting you. Throwing down a marker. If Trump gets the nomination, I want to be able to howl, "I told you so!" after the Democrat landslide.

Do you want it bad enough to help make it happen?

Mark said...

If they had engaged Trump on the merits of his issues from the start, treating him like a serious candidate, rather than offering nothing but ad hominem after ad hominem as reason to oppose him, he would probably have fallen off the charts by now. All these attacks on his person, rather than his ideas and policies, have done nothing but boost him up and up.

jr565 said...

gahrie wrote:
you been asleep the last seven years? Trump will have a pen, and what is worse, a true mandate from the people. He will make Obama look like a piker when it comes to flaunting the separation of powers. And to many of his supporters, that will be a feature, not a bug.

Trump is a rabblerousing demagogue, and he scares me. But I totally understand why peple are supporting him.

all of them a say they will build a fence. If that is the will of the people and they control the house and the senate why WOULDNT they build a fence?

Big Mike said...

I wouldn't trust any government that garage mahal wasn't angry at.

grackle said...

I do not understand why Trump is not vulnerable as a fake conservative.

Candidates are only “vulnerable” if they falsely claim to be something they are not. But Trump has never claimed to be a conservative. Readers, in debate this is called a “straw man” argument.

I believe the commentor’s problem is that the commentor conflates being a Republican only with being a conservative. They are not and have never been the same. Conservatives, both fiscal and social, are an admittedly strong segment of the Republican party, moderates are another branch, the libertarian-leaning ones still another, etc. The commentor will find most of the factions listed at the URL below:

http://tinyurl.com/gqpodn6

Gahrie said...

all of them a say they will build a fence. If that is the will of the people and they control the house and the senate why WOULDNT they build a fence?

Frankly I don't know. I only know that they have promised to build a fence before, and haven't done it.

Frankly, if I wasn't a Conservative, I would be out there as big a trump supporter as could be, gleefully yelling "burn it down, burn it all down".

I am at the point where I think that needs to happen, but I know the terrible suffering and destruction it will bring, so I can't wish for it.

Gahrie said...

But more than anything, I am taunting you. Throwing down a marker. If Trump gets the nomination, I want to be able to howl, "I told you so!" after the Democrat landslide.

It's not as fun as you think it is...trust me, we Conservatives have been doing it for years.......

sinz52 said...

Trump's establishment opponents are trying everything except addressing the issues Trump is discussing and coming up with better alternatives.

Terry said...

" . . . why WOULDNT they build a fence?"
Because, if they do anything that would actually decrease the flow of cheap, illegal labor into the US, the United States Chamber of Commerce will not only stop contributing to their campaigns, it will fund any challenger in their districts who will toe their line on open immigration. All the USCC cares about is money, and you can get money by cost-shifting just as you can get it from selling your product. If you cost-shift the price of labor onto the taxpayer, you can increase your profit without increasing revenue.

Phil 3:14 said...

Questor siad "Careerists like Boehner, Lindsay Graham, and Mitch McConnell are all guilty of looking after their personal interests at the expense of the larger interests of the nation."

"Looking after the personal interests" as opposed to Donald Trump? Am I understanding this line of reasoning correctly?

Eric said...

all of them a say they will build a fence. If that is the will of the people and they control the house and the senate why WOULDNT they build a fence?

Because they need money to stay in office, and the people providing the money don't want any impediments to immigration. Rubio is a perfect example - he was all about tough border controls during the campaign, but once elected he joined the gang of whatever and tried to push through an amnesty bill that would have provided the incentive for millions of new illegals.

It's not that people think Trump will have more power than other candidates. It's that people think he hasn't been bought.

Quaestor said...

Phil wrote: "Looking after the personal interests" as opposed to Donald Trump? Am I understanding this line of reasoning correctly?

Absolutely. Donald Trump is a private citizen, and as such has been doing exactly what Adam Smith and Thomas Jefferson would expect of a private citizen, looking after his own interests. Senators, members of Congress, and governors hold a public trust which is not in the nature of private citizenship. As yet Trump has taken no oath of office, nor has he had an opportunity to either fulfill to renege on any promise or pledge he has made, unlike the leadership of the GOP who currently hold elective office. Your attempt to draw a parallel between office holders who have had in some cases decades to make good on the trust invested in them and failed, with a possible but unlikely future is absurd. Here endth the lesson.

John said...

Hey Chuck:

The other day you wanted to bet on Hilary in a Trump Clinton matchup in November.

I offered to take you up on it for $5, I think Trump wins.

So far crickets. Care to put your money where your mouth is?

Drago said...

Phil 3:14: ""Looking after the personal interests" as opposed to Donald Trump? Am I understanding this line of reasoning correctly?"

Technically, at this point, yes and yes.

Trump is a developer (construction) and owner of hotels, golf courses, casinos etc. These are places of employment that tend to want the illegals in order to minimize costs since such a high percentage of the jobs are there low wage/low skill/manual labor.

Yet Trump is saying the things he is about illegal immigration and his desire to stem the flow.

So, yes, Trump is (at least apparently) speaking out against his immediate financial interests.

Do you have an alternative assessment?

Howard said...

I like how they related Trump's tactics to the wildcat "gimmick" employed in the NFL that worked for a time, then counter tactics defeated it.

What they don't consider is that Trump might be running a Bill Walsh "West Coast" offense that is sustainable.

I've changed my opinion on Trump. He is not a tool of the Clintons and he will win.

Drago said...

garage: "Trumpkins are so cute when they're mad"

Notice how garage is avoiding the posts about the mass muslim rapes/assaults/thefts against women, men and children across Europe?

He's avoiding them "courageously" of course. Always courageously. Not quite as courageously as his beloved Hamas-like islamist heroes of course. Nonetheless.

traditionalguy said...

Paranoia over being conned by Trump is a sign of being a disciple of the right wing radio prophets who have the single message that you are one of the privileged knowers of inside secrets because of their program and its sponsors. Trouble is they make it up as they go.

You have to learn through experience with life, and not by hang onto a ideology category that never leads to solutions. Study history!

Francisco D said...

I was about to retort about Garage's lack of reading comprehension and his childish passive-aggressive behavior, then I realized: DO NOT FEED THE TROLL.

Michael K said...

"Trump (or someone like him) is what you get when people don't trust existing power structures."

We ate entering a low trust society, which is a huge problem for us. Low Trust societies are very expensive and eventually become tribal.

Black college students are self segregating. Muslims are the original low trust society.

Richard Fernandez, as usual, has a few things to say.

A crisis of legitimacy leads not only to higher transaction costs, but also to anomie. It destroys the psychologically comforting world which many would gladly pay to maintain. Economist Bryan Caplan attempted to quantify exactly how much we would be willing to pay for this mental peace in his theory of rational irrationality. He argued that "when the costs of having erroneous beliefs are low, people relax their intellectual standards" and consume "beliefs that, if generally accepted, would benefit themselves or the group with whom they identify ... beliefs that best fit with the images of themselves that they want to adopt and to project ... beliefs of other people they like and with whom they want to associate".

People are willing to go along believing in Santa Claus or Hope and Change for as long as it's free. Once it imposes disastrous costs, however, people start to become cynical. In place of trust they start to believe the opposite of what their leaders say.

For example Gregor Aisch an Josh Keller of the New York Times wryly note that president Obama's gun control exhortations have resulted in the exact opposite effect. The "fear of gun-buying restrictions has been the main driver of spikes in gun sales, far surpassing the effects of mass shootings and terrorist attacks alone." That is a sad commentary on the president's credibility.


We are now the Balkans as a society.

Unknown said...

-----Trump will have a pen .... a gold plated pen that writes with gold ink. His phone will be gold plated too.

Jupiter said...

While it is true that Trump is not what we traditionally think of as a conservative, we now have a Republican Party that would like to put all white people in camps, and is probably preparing legislation to that effect. The big question is how they will split our property, but I think Paul Ryan has devised a fair and equitable plan, which will be revealed at a time not far distant (for those unwilling to wait, everyone gets half. Blacks, women, gays, Eskimos -- half for everyone, including you). In this context, Mr. Trump's willingness to allow me to spend my few remaining years at large is the closest thing to "conservatism" currently on offer, and I'll take it.

garage mahal said...

I was about to retort about.

Whenever you're about to retort about something, do a full stop, and don't. It's just a waste of everyone's time.

Terry said...

"Notice how garage is avoiding the posts about the mass muslim rapes/assaults/thefts against women, men and children across Europe?"
It is a truism that leftists direct their anger at their own people rather than the 'other.' This has been so for a very long time. Stalin killed his own people. Hitler killed the 'other.' In the 1930s, when Stalin was killing millions of soviet citizens in the USSR, Hitler was killing hundreds in Germany -- after he took away their citizenship.
This makes it very difficult to share a nation with Leftists. They don't want a political contest where your interests and their interests reach a stable balance, they will never be satisfied with anything less than governing you. It is you they are after, and the things you love, not Muslims. They can't even hold the image the of evil Muslims in their minds. If Muslims do something wicked, like rape and murder, the rape and murder were caused by American conservatives.
It is the result of righteous Muslim anger over the Iraq War. Or America's support of Israel. Or the CIA coup that toppled Mossedegh. The source of all the evil, in all the world, is Americans who oppose them.

If terrorism is caused by climate change, whose fault is climate change?
The Koch brothers. Suburbanites with big houses and SUV's. Who eat beef.

Achilles said...

Francisco D said...
"I was about to retort about Garage's lack of reading comprehension and his childish passive-aggressive behavior, then I realized: DO NOT FEED THE TROLL."

Not true. Calling out a retard for acting like a retard works just fine. Garage is a retard with zero critical thinking ability. He can barely regurgitate one liners from Daily KOS posts and is absolutely incapable of engaging in a discussion about any topic more complicated than a 2nd grade math quiz.

Phil 3:14 said...

"Your attempt to draw a parallel between office holders who have had in some cases decades to make good on the trust invested in them and failed, with a possible but unlikely future is absurd. Here endth the lesson."

I am deeply humbled and enlightened from your deep insights. I now see that Mr. Trump most assuredly only has the best of intentions and that our country would be in good hands.

Or better put, a Trump administration would be amazing, terrific, and high energy! Did I mention and terrific?

Phil 3:14 said...

Maybe Scott Adams says it better than I.

Chuck said...

John; you got it. I am in for $5. But I want to make it clear that I still win if Trump doesn't get the nomination. I don't think that Trump will get the nomination. But if he does, and it is Trump v Clinton, I think Trump loses. Not because I like Mrs. Clinton or her party, of course. It is because I think that a large majority of US voters will in the end view Trump with revulsion.

So you are on. Trump will not be the 45th President of the United States. I will tell you where to send the $5 as soon as this bet is concluded.

Paddy O said...

"over being conned by Trump is a sign of being a disciple of the right wing radio prophets "

Being that I've never once listened to right wing radio (ever), I prefer to chalk it up to being a disciple of Jesus. Everyone wants their Messiah. I've already found mine. So, I don't have to vote for one.

John said...


Blogger Chuck said...

John; you got it. I am in for $5. But I want to make it clear that I still win if Trump doesn't get the nomination. I don't think that Trump will get the nomination. But if he does, and it is Trump v Clinton, I think Trump loses.

I did not have in mind betting on whether trump gets the nomination, only on whether, if he does, he wins the general.

But if you will pay off if Hilary does not make it to November, regardless of what happens to Trump, I am OK with your modification.

Are we on?

John Henry

Rusty said...

John. I got five bucks that Hillary isn't on the ticket.

John said...

Rusty,

No.

I think it is probable that Hilary! will be the Dem candidate in November but that probability is growing less and less every day.

I am not willing to bet a donut on her being the candidate, though I will be surprised if she is not. Absent a stroke or indictment.

John Henry