February 29, 2016

"Major partisan realignments do happen in America — on average about once every 40 years.... If a realignment is underway..."

"... then it poses a big empirical challenge... [T]he assumption that the parties will rally behind their respective nominees may or may not be reliable.... But we may be entering a new era, and through the broader sweep of American history, there’s sometimes been quite a bit of voting across party lines.... It doesn’t necessarily mean that Republicans are bound to lose.... But if I wouldn’t bet on an anti-Trump landslide, I’m also not sure I’d bet against one.... It’s reasonably safe to say that some of the people in the #NeverTrump movement will, in fact, wind up supporting Trump.... But I’d be equally surprised if there were total capitulation to Trump.... If you’re one of these ideological conservatives, it may even be in your best interest for Trump to lose in November. If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited.... You’ll have an opportunity to get your party back in 2020.... But if Trump wins in November, you might as well relocate the Republican National Committee’s headquarters to Trump Tower. The realignment of the Republican Party will be underway, and you’ll have been left out of it."

Writes Nate Silver in "Don’t Assume Conservatives Will Rally Behind Trump."

167 comments:

Michael K said...

Fo once, I agree with Silver. I have no idea what will happen and I think this could be a sea change with a populist party taking the middle and two small rump parties, one Socialist and the other business oriented.

There is a lot of anger and this is why we see Trump doing as well as he has. The GOP has let down its voters too many times.

Angelo Codevilla has it best, I think. It's the people against The Ruling Class.

Hagar said...

Nate Silver writes for The NYT.
A discussion about what Trumpism means for the Democrat Party is also needed.

Chuck said...

Professor Althouse;

I gather that you feel an arm's length distance from the Republican primaries and that you feel yourself to be a mere observer. That's fine, of course. But you are a real, live, genuine expert on U.S. Constitutional law. I wonder why you haven't commented on the laughably idiotic Trump comments on "opening up" libel laws, and in particular the constitutional law perusing to press freedoms and privileges in such claims. What Trump had been saying might even sound passable to a lot of Trump supporters. But it is complete silliness (and it might actually be dangerous, if it weren't so silly), for any serious constitutional scholar. As you are.

Will you comment?

eric said...

Here is what Nate is missing.

If Trump loses, it will be seen as a repudiation of his immigration stance. Every Republican out there that supports Amnesty will make it about immigration. Maybe not explicitly but they will say, "You see, you have to win the Latino vote. Rubio could have won the Latino vote. But Trump was too hard lined on immigration. Republicans must support Amnesty now."

And to make matters worse, I believe they won't harp on that during the campaign. In other words, if Trump does well at all, it'll be because of his immigration position.

And they won't say a word until he loses, because they don't want to drive people to Trump by forcasting their after election analysis.

But let's say conservatives don't vote for Trump Because they think he is a liberal in disguise. Well, they are going to be shocked, shocked! To find out after the election that, not only did they vote for him, and most conservatives voted for him, but it was the Latino vote that lost him the election.

You can take this meme to the bank.

Curtiss said...

"If Donald Trump wins the Republican presidential nomination, he’ll have undermined a lot of assumptions we once held about the GOP. He’ll have become the nominee despite neither being reliably conservative nor being very electable, supposedly the two things Republicans care most about."

Assumptions like Romney and McCain were reliably conservative and were electable?

Hagar said...

The "conservative" Republicans mouthing off in the media are not "business oriented" any more than the various voting blocs of the Democrat Party are "socialist oriented."
They do not know what "business" is, and the Democrats have no idea of what "socialism" means.

MikeR said...

'I wonder why you haven't commented on the laughably idiotic Trump comments on "opening up" libel laws'
The man is a comedian. Take little he says seriously. It's neither necessary nor desirable to focus on the content of his words.

Chuck said...

Bleah! iPhone auto-correct turned 'pertaining' into 'perusing'... Sorry.

eric said...

Chuck, you really don't get Trump, do you?

He isn't going to mess with the 1st amendment. Hell, he can't. But, he is going to create battle space and let the media know he isn't going to be your typical, Republican, pussy he takes it from the media and doesn't give back.

About time.

eric said...

Blogger Curtiss said...
"If Donald Trump wins the Republican presidential nomination, he’ll have undermined a lot of assumptions we once held about the GOP. He’ll have become the nominee despite neither being reliably conservative nor being very electable, supposedly the two things Republicans care most about."

Assumptions like Romney and McCain were reliably conservative and were electable?

2/29/16, 11:41 AM


Isn't it interesting how we keep getting told by the people who pushed McCain and Romney that Trump isn't electable and that he isn't conservative?

You'd think at some point they'd be too embarrassed to say anything.

eric said...

Should have read "who takes it from the media...."

I apologize for the error.

dbp said...

Republicans are in a no-win situation if Trump is nominated.

The Democratic part has moved to the left in recent years, Bernie has always been far left and Hillary has drifted opportunistically to the left--so either way, Democrats are well represented. Trump, with a notable exception here and there (immigration) is otherwise a pretty mainstream Democrat. Republicans are pissed that a party that has gotten more conservative over the years is being hijacked by someone who isn't even a Republican.

Also like eric says, win or lose; the victory or loss will be spun in a way that screws conservatives.

Pettifogger said...

Trump would do great damage to the country as president, but if Hillary or Bernie becomes president, I despair whether there'll be enough of the country left to save come 2020. For one thing, the Supreme Court will become entrenched with tbe-constitution-means-whatever-lefties-want-it-to-mean judges. For another, our military will become committed to fighting climate change and little else. We will have admitted tens of thousands more potential jihadi fifth columnists. Elections have consequences.

Balfegor said...

If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited....

People have kept saying this about the Euroskeptic/immigration-restrictionist parties in the EU, but even though they lose every time, it's by smaller and smaller margins. At some point, the Right and the Left will be unable to collude to freeze them out of national governance. Even if Trump is the nominee and loses resoundingly, if the Republicans and Democrats decide this gives them license to carry on as usual, then 4 years later I think the reaction against them will be even more dramatic than Trump/Sanders.

Michael K said...

"They do not know what "business" is, and the Democrats have no idea of what "socialism" means."

They may not be able to define it but they believe in it.

robother said...

I think Silver is confusing the financial power of the "Conservative" Donor class within the Republican Party with actual numbers of voters.

The effective open borders policy of the Republican Party is a function of the Republican Donor caste denying a true Nationalist to Republican Primary voters since the 1980s: it never reflected an actual preference of any significant number of Republican voters.

Hence the need to lie about "just build the damn wall," "enforcement first," etc.

Dan Hossley said...

I think Nate Silver is over analyzing the Trump rise to 35% of Republican voters. How did Harold Hill sell band instruments to the good citizens of River City, IA? He promised them something he couldn't deliver and frightened them into believing he could.

Yes, we have trouble. Right here in River City.

rehajm said...

I've always believed it's the Democrats who are under major realignment: continue with Capitalist Lite or go full Socialist?

Curtiss said...

Blogger eric said...

Isn't it interesting how we keep getting told by the people who pushed McCain and Romney that Trump isn't electable and that he isn't conservative?


2/29/16, 11:45 AM


What's really interesting is that over $100 million was spent to promote Jeb... Bush, because of his "conservatism" and "electability".

rehajm said...

If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited

Translated Silver: Oh please Oh please Oh please!!!

BDNYC said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Curious George said...

"You’ll have an opportunity to get your party back in 2020"

Could be too late.

Brando said...

"If Trump loses, it will be seen as a repudiation of his immigration stance. Every Republican out there that supports Amnesty will make it about immigration. Maybe not explicitly but they will say, "You see, you have to win the Latino vote. Rubio could have won the Latino vote. But Trump was too hard lined on immigration. Republicans must support Amnesty now.""

I think someone who is pro-amnesty anyway would say that, but then that's what they'd be arguing for all along. If Trump loses the general election, it can be chalked up to any of the following reasons, depending on where the person is coming from:

1) He lost because his party did not unite behind him.

2) He lost because the Dems have an electoral vote advantage.

3) He lost because he's an undisciplined loudmouth who managed to alienate enough people into not voting or voting for Hillary.

4) He lost because he wasn't sufficiently conservative and conservatives stayed home.

5) He lost because he wasn't sufficiently moderate and moderates backed Hillary.

6) He lost because he's all over the place and too many voters couldn't trust him.

7) He lost because the combover was too distracting, more so than Hillary's laugh.

It's just like Romney's loss. Everyone has a different theory on it, and surprise surprise, each theory tends to support the theorist's pre-existing political opinions. This would be no different.

Original Mike said...

"If you’re one of these ideological conservatives, it may even be in your best interest for Trump to lose in November."

This sounds like 2008 Althouse logic; give the entire government to the Dems so they own the result. It's an awful prescription. The Supreme Court, the downhill spiral of health insurance, .... The consequences are too important to play these games. I will (almost for sure, Nov. is a long time from now) vote for Trump in November even though it's reached the point that he turns my stomach.

Bobby said...

Michael K,

"Fo once, I agree with Silver. I have no idea what will happen and I think this could be a sea change with a populist party taking the middle and two small rump parties, one Socialist and the other business oriented."

I could totally see this happening in the short-term, but in the long-term, the first-past-the-post structure of US elections tends drives the political process to a Two-Party System, with third parties being relegated to fringe status. Political parties are cobbled together by voters advocating numerous interests, and we do our coalition-building before the election (in contrast to our European Parliamentary cousins whose parties tend to compete in elections individually and build their governing coalition after the election). So I think, eventually, America would get back to two major political parties.

Now what those two next generation parties look like, I really don't know -- I could hypothesize a few different scenarios, but I really don't know which interest groups will line up where.

BDNYC said...

What's missing from this analysis is what happens to the Democratic Party. If the RNC gets figuratively relocated the Trump Tower, as Silver suggests, then the Democrats will have a real hard time keeping working class whites, including union members and east coast ethnics, on the reservation. Right now it seems like the Trump Party appeals to (mostly white) anxiety about the changing face of America. The Trump Party is not merely nationalistic, it is protectionist and retrograde. The thing is, the Trump Party is "conservative" in the sense that many Democrats are conservative, i.e., using government to protect their economic interests from decline. That sort of "conservatism" has been a part of Democratic politics for decades and appeals to working class people of all ethnic backgrounds. So I do not think the Democrats can just assume that ethnic minorities will vote for them if the Trump Party becomes real.

This could mean we have three parties for awhile, but not for long. There will have to be two major political coalitions. That is the nature of our system. If there is some realignment, I predict working class people will "vote their economic interests" (as the Democrats have begged them to do) and align themselves with the Trump Party. And the evangelicals never really cared about limited government or free market economics, so all the Trump Party has to do to keep them on board is be pro-life and let them discriminate.

Original Mike said...

Should have added our deteriorating fiscal situation to the list of our woes.

MaxedOutMama said...

Who really knows? Who can know?

As far as I am sure of anything, I am sure that when the Democratic and Republican parties colluded to change the presidential debate rules in the 90s to exclude almost all third party candidates, they did themselves a disservice. The third party candidates helped push the parties to deal with issues that the two main parties did not want to address. So now the pressure has built up, and you get a very odd election cycle like this one.

No establishment can afford to get too far from its base.

Paul said...

I hope there is a brokered convention. Trump? No. He may know business but he don't know sh*t about anything else.

Yea, let the delegates decide.

Sammy Finkelman said...

I think we are at the stage where if Trump does not get the nomination, he is highly likely to mount an third party campaign. To the extent legally possible.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

the evangelicals never really cared about limited government or free market economics

Thus they are called Evangelicals. Who said they did care about limited government or the free market? I would quibble with "let them discriminate." I would have phrased it as leaving them alone. But other than that I think yours' is a trenchant analysis of the situation.

Sammy Finkelman said...

If there are 3 or more candidates running in the general election, one or more third party candidate may displace the Republican or the Democrat in various states, even the same candidate displacing the Republican in some states like California, and the zzDemocrat in others, like Tennessee or West Virginia.

bernard Sanders did that when running for Congress and teh Senate in Vermont. He displaced the Democrat. Joe Lieberman in Connecticut in 2006 displaced the republican.

AllenS said...

Paul, Trump now has 82 delegates. All of the others combined equal 43 delegates. Trump has almost twice as many as others have combined. It takes 1,237 delegates to win the nomination out of 2,340 available. A little more than half is need to win. Let's wait and see about Super Tuesday #s.

David said...

"If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited.... You’ll have an opportunity to get your party back in 2020.... "

But probably not the nation, which will have been turned over to the judiciary by President Clinton and her appointees.

Bay Area Guy said...

Nate Silver is pretty good. He's been much better, since he left the NYTimes.

LBJ candidly said, after passing the civil rights law in the early 60s, that the Dems now had lost the South for decades to come.

This was evident in the 1964 election, when 5 southern states voted for Republican Goldwater; this reached a major schism in the 1968 election when Democrat George Wallace ran independently, took those 5 states, and won nearly 14% of the popular vote, which swung the election to Nixon.

This re-allignment was seemingly complete in 1972, when Nixon won 49 states.

But, it wasn't totally complete -- Dem Jimmy Carter won these same ex-Confederate states in 1976 and won a close election against Ford, to boot.

I don't know if we're entering a true re-allignment right now. We do know that Republicans are going to have to either support Trump or assist Hillary in her quest for ultimate power.

Trump's tone and statements can be loud and off-putting. I submit though -- if you watch the campaign with the TV sound off, and simply study the issues, you will find that Trump has much support in the middle ground on 4 issues: (1) he thinks the trade deals that Clinton, Bush and Obama have done with Republicans have hurt the working class, (2) he thinks the flood of illegal immigration hurts the working class, (3) he thinks the Iraq War was an unnecessary mistake, and (4) he thinks we should be much tougher on radical Islam trying to enter this country.

I submit, respectfully, that if you talk to your local 50-year old, blue collar, construction guy, his views will coincide very closely with Trump on these issues. There are millions of this type of voter in America.

BDNYC said...

"I think we are at the stage where if Trump does not get the nomination, he is highly likely to mount an third party campaign. To the extent legally possible."

I don't know. If there's a brokered convention, then it will probably be too late for Trump to mount a third party campaign. Maybe Trump can go third party if he is stymied tomorrow, takes his ball and goes home. But that likely won't happen.

Either Trump wins the nomination outright on the first ballot or the party brokers a deal whereby a mainstream conservative is the nominee (Rubio, Romney, etc.) and the veep is someone who meets Trump's approval. It won't be Trump himself, of course. Maybe Christie.

Kevin said...

What Silver doesn't seem to consider is if Trump is nominated as a populist, and the lack of Conservative support causes him to lose, the Republican Party as we know it likely ends as well.

After losing three presidential elections in a row, the last by suicide, what effective argument can be made that the people should continue to support the party?

Michael K said...

"in the long-term, the first-past-the-post structure of US elections tends drives the political process to a Two-Party System, with third parties being relegated to fringe status"

I agree but, remember that the Republican Party began as a third party.

One big factor to try to get business weaned off government. I don't know if this will happen before the economy collapses.

China is in deep shit right now. They are trying to prop up the yuan (in contrast to some who say it is undervalued) and having trouble.

The Chinese economy is pock-marked with companies that cannot pay their bills and survive only with government help. Jiangshi, the Chinese call them — “vampire companies.” Or zombies.

These ghoulish companies and their debts are hindering the world’s second-biggest economy and will likely do so for years. Companies that miss debt payments inflict losses on banks, which then find it hard to lend even to solid companies. By propping up vampire companies, the government can weaken the entire economic ecosystem.

All of which helps explain why the global economy is sputtering and why investors have been gripped by panic.

“It’s undoubtedly a very serious problem,” says Charles Collyns, chief economist at the Institute of International Finance. “The Chinese so far have been very reluctant to let market mechanisms work their way.”


Ghost cities and ghost shopping malls don't pay the bills.

Maybe we can end with a libertarian party and a Socialist party.

David said...

I've been predicting (wrongly) a electoral vote getting third party candidate for some time. It still could happen this year but I kind of doubt it. Sanders won't do it. His attention span is too short and he doesn't hate Hillary more than he hates a lot of other people who do not agree with him. Cruz is asshole enough to do it but he probably figures he will get another chance with the Republicans so not him. Rubio? No. At least not unless strongly encouraged by big names and money in the party. Carson? Could happen but Trump can lure him with a offer of a position of importance. Carson likes positions of importance.

Trump himself. He's the most likely third party candidate (if he loses the nomination) but then he would have to spend real money and I'm not sure he wants to do that.

No predictions from me. Only possibilities. Things may be more clear by Wednesday morning.

Michael K said...

I think Carson is still in to see if Trump implodes. He may drop out if Trump sweeps the primaries tomorrow.

Carson would be my alternate vote if I thought he had a chance.

David said...

Trump is not necessarily protectionist. He is against one sided deals, which is different. He won't deport all the illegals either. Won't be able to pull it off for the same kind of practical reasons Obama has not closed Gitmo. He's a deal maker and the deal will include actually enforced border controls with some kind of amnesty lite. He will scare the shit out of our allies and opponents, which may be good or may be bad, depending on how ably he can manipulate their fear.

I view Trump's campaign as all part of his governing strategy. He is the master of the Big Ask and part of his positions are aimed at people outside the USA. Watch him work it if he gets elected.

grackle said...

Trump, with a notable exception here and there (immigration) is otherwise a pretty mainstream Democrat.

The above is a narration that is frequently offered when the subject is Trump. My problem is that I cannot find many “mainstream Democrat” positions that Trump has taken on the issues. Can the readers be allowed in on the insight? Just what “mainstream” Democrat positions has Trump taken? Whoever answers - be specific and be thorough, please.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Just for fun, parsing each sentence in the linked article. Fifteen are outright conjectural or presumptive. Eleven (....) relate facts. (Veracity and relevance of the "facts" is a separate issue.)

If...he [will] have....

He [will] have...supposedly....

He [will] have....

He [will] have....

If...it will imply...and is perhaps....

....

....

....

This time, we really might....

It [is] almost impossible to reconcile....

If....

....

....

The rules...might not apply....

....

This doesn’t necessarily mean....

....

And...will still apply.

It [is] probably fair to guess.....

Still, one should be careful about one’s assumptions.

For instance, the assumption.....

....

....

But we may be....

....

....

Chuck said...

eric, I think that Trump really is dumb. And so are his supporters. The reaction to Trump's bloviating about "opening up" (what does that even mean?) libel laws just makes the press condemn him all the more, and it makes educated people think that Trump is a joke. A bad joke.

I don't know, and don't much care, about "battle space." If somebody says something that is crazily stupid, I pretty much categorize it as crazy and stupid.

Bobby said...

BDNYC,

" If there is some realignment, I predict working class people will "vote their economic interests" (as the Democrats have begged them to do) and align themselves with the Trump Party. And the evangelicals never really cared about limited government or free market economics, so all the Trump Party has to do to keep them on board is be pro-life and let them discriminate."

This is the Libertarian pipe dream, right?

In a party realignment, on the one hand, you would have a Trumpesque Populist Party- they're winning elections support from voters who are opposed to current immigration and trade policies. Those voters tend to be blue-collar workers, a demographic that also cares about labor issues (increasing minimum wage, shortening the work week, etc.), so it's quite likely that their inclusion into the Populist Party would necessitate it favoring at least some labor issues. Meanwhile, you have social conservatives who- as you noted- don't really care one bit about economic issues, but at least find some solace in the reduced immigration policies keeping America looking more like the America they know and love (at least for a while- long-term demographic changes are always inevitable). Their inclusion into the Populist Party, however, would likely necessitate that the Populists advance much of their social agenda- abortion, as you noted, opposition to gay marriage, continued government restriction of marijuana, etc. etc.

On the other side, you would have a Liberty Party consisting of the business-oriented community- who favor lower taxes, fewer government regulations in economic affairs, free trade and continued immigration policies, etc.- merged with the "social libertarians" interested in promoting individual rights over government intervention on everything from abortion, gay rights, pot, prostitution, etc. etc. Right now, the "social libertarians" tend to line up with the Democrats, but there's no reason they necessarily would, since their economic interests do not necessarily lie with a big state government.

It's the Libertarian dream where you no longer have Republicans pretending to be a "small government party" and instead get a true battle between Statists versus Libertarians, and the latter believe they can finally win.

Only the thing is, it might not turn out this way. I could just as easily see several other outcomes of a realignment.

David said...

"I agree but, remember that the Republican Party began as a third party."

True but both existing parties were in the process of collapse when the Republicans arrived in the late 1850's. Once the "conscience Whigs" left the Democrats the Dems were a weak and indeed further splintered regional organization. The election of 1860 ended up with four parties, none of which had a national scope, presenting candidates and getting electoral votes. The present day Democrats still have a national scope so it will be hard to duplicate what the Republicans did in 1860.

Bobby said...

Michael K,

"Maybe we can end with a libertarian party and a Socialist party."

That's the Libertarian Party's dream right there, yeah. Both parties would likely take more neutral-sounding brand names and would likely endorse more modest changes to the status quo in the race to broaden and maximize their appeal, but what you would get is center-libertarian versus center-statist, yeah.

And who knows, it just might happen- America has had at least two Two-Party systems before (and really more, if you look at the rebranding of the Republican and Democratic Parties), so it defies logic to believe that the current one will endure in perpetuity. Sooner or later, everything changes.

Sebastian said...

"if Trump does well at all, it'll be because of his immigration position." This is why the "realignment" is bound to be unstable. He has proposed a cumbersome form of amnesty: kick all illegals out, then let them all back in "legally." Chances are, when the kicking out turns out to be costly and difficult, Prez Trump will just go for the "smart" short-cut of straight-up legalization. People who won't like it, or will be surprised, obviously didn't attend Trump University.

Gahrie said...

He’ll have become the nominee despite neither being reliably conservative nor being very electable, supposedly the two things Republicans care most about."


The problem is, there are two groups of Republicans, one of values electability, and one of which values reliably conservative. The conservatives have been told to shut up, suck it up, and vote for "the most electable" since 1984, and are tired of it...especially when the "most electable" ends up losing badly anyway.

Conservatives are no longer willing to be patronized by the Republican establishment the way minorities are patronized by the Democratic establishment.

Diamondhead said...

Grackle, one can only be as specific as Trump himself is. But take for instance, his declaration that he would not allow people to die on the sidewalks (like, presumably, would Rubio, Cruz and most Republicans). That is the language of the mainstream Democrat. He's also on the record supporting the individual mandate and (not that long ago) single-payer healthcare. His defense of Planned Parenthood could come out of the mouth of any Democrat. He opposes entitlement reform. He rails against corporations. He edges perilously close to protectionism. He's taken a hard line on immigration and he's had a recent conversion on abortion. Other than that, he's not recognizable as a Republican or a conservative. He found his constituency before he found his political positions, and they proceed from populism and nationalism. One recent political forbear might be Jim Trafficant, the late former Democrat congressman from Ohio.

Bobby said...

Gahrie,

"Conservatives are no longer willing to be patronized by the Republican establishment the way minorities are patronized by the Democratic establishment."

I understand that's how you see it, but if you wanted an authentically "conservative" candidate, I think you'd have to admit that Donald Trump hardly tops that list. He may very well turn out to govern as a "conservative," but looking at the positions he has staked out throughout his career, it would be hard to declare him a genuine "conservative."

I think the Trump Phenomena represents something more than just a Conservative revolt against Establishment patronization.

Original Mike said...

"One recent political forbear might be Jim Trafficant, the late former Democrat congressman from Ohio."

Must be the hair

Luke Lea said...

On account of his positions on trade and immigration I expect many more Dems and Independents will be drawn to Trump, including surprising numbers of working-class African-Americans and Hispanics, who are as attracted by the prospect of more and better employment opportunities as working-class whites. We'll see in the fall.

Brando said...

I'll believe this "major realignment" when I see it. The white working class vote has been steadily moving towards the GOP since the '90s, which is why Obama needed to try the "minority/women/yuppie turnout approach" in his races--Obama didn't do poorly among working class whites because they were racist, but because they were already abandoning the Democrats who culturally alienated them and economically offered the same old thing they had since FDR. Upper class whites, and minorities and younger voters have been moving more towards the Dems at the same time. Trump's success shows more a recognition of the existing realignment in the GOP (the larger than before numbers of working class whites who reject supply side theory and libertarianism in favor of nationalist policies) than a driver of it.

I think barring a third party entrant (or major terror attack or recession) the margin will still be tight as it was in the last four elections--the two parties pulling between 45% and 55%. Voters tend to settle back with their parties after all the fighting's over. But all else equal, this gives Hillary a slight but real advantage. If she were a halfway decent politician (at say Obama's level) she'd beat Trump by a commanding margin. But her weaknesses will keep it close enough to make it interesting.

Michael K said...

"The present day Democrats still have a national scope so it will be hard to duplicate what the Republicans did in 1860."

The present day Democrats are bleeding voters. Turnout is down 30%, 44% with whites.

Sanders shows how weak they are. Obama built a "top and bottom coalition" but Hillary may not be able to hold it together.

She may end with a top and black coalition that is not big enough. Eric Schmidt is trying very hard to replace numbers with tech but it may not work.

Things may be more clear after tomorrow. I still have no idea what will happen.

Henry said...

The really interesting thing to me is that realignments realign both parties. The Democrats lost the South and the Republicans gained the South.

If Trump's populism succeeds, it seems to indicate that a realignment on class. The Republicans will lose their elites and the Democrats will gain those elites.

Brando said...

"The problem is, there are two groups of Republicans, one of values electability, and one of which values reliably conservative. The conservatives have been told to shut up, suck it up, and vote for "the most electable" since 1984, and are tired of it...especially when the "most electable" ends up losing badly anyway."

Just because their guys lost doesn't mean they weren't the most electable of the bunch. I doubt Santorum or Newt could have gotten as close as Romney did. But close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, so if you can't win you may as well get the candidate you'd prefer. "Electability" is just another way to say "I don't like this person, but I assume others will".

"Conservatives are no longer willing to be patronized by the Republican establishment the way minorities are patronized by the Democratic establishment."

Is this a "conservative" thing behind Trump? Because I'd think if you define "conservative" to mean economic libertarianism and rule of law, Cruz would be a more suitable candidate. Trump may appeal to a lot of people who are conservative, but he is hardly pushing a conservative agenda compared with his primary competition.

Original Mike said...

"But close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades,"

And nuclear weapons.

Brando said...

"The really interesting thing to me is that realignments realign both parties. The Democrats lost the South and the Republicans gained the South."

One realignment I'm waiting for is a Republican rebirth in the cities--right now they're virtually single-party polities. I suspect there are a lot of urban dwellers who are tired of restrictive gun laws, government waste, high taxes, racial grievance, crime, and strangling business regulations. But the odds of electing people to actually change any of that is nil.

Nonapod said...

No matter who wins the way I see this country heading is toward executive authoritarianism. As with Obama (and even GWB to an extent) both Hillary and Trump seem to be advocates for a more active executive branch. Voters too are apparently enamored with the notion of a one man fixer, a strong man, who can miraculously fix all the perceived problems. Personal freedom and the Free Market be damned, after all they're just quaint 18-19th century notions anyway. Voters want an autocrat who can steamroll congress and appoint Justices who don't care about some moldy old document written 200+ years ago in a different world.

CStanley said...

What Silver doesn't seem to consider is if Trump is nominated as a populist, and the lack of Conservative support causes him to lose, the Republican Party as we know it likely ends as well.

After losing three presidential elections in a row, the last by suicide, what effective argument can be made that the people should continue to support the party?


How about this: Thus far there is no viable organization to take the place of the GOP to keep the progressives from running the table. Those who think the Dems have already been doing that ought to consider that perhaps you haven't even begun to imagine the dystopia that awaits us.

Michael K said...

"Is this a "conservative" thing behind Trump? "

No. I think a lot of us are willing to see the house burnt down and start over. I'm not there yet but I see a lot who are.

"Voters want an autocrat who can steamroll congress and appoint Justices who don't care about some moldy old document written 200+ years ago in a different world"

That's Eric Schmidt and a lot of techies who seem to think they would run things if the Democrats keep control. I guess that is what they are doing. I'm not at all sure. Hillary goes with the money. Lots of money.

Think Tom Friedman and his 20,000 square foot house.

A lot of Chinese disagree and maybe that is why so many are coming here and sending their kids here.

Oso Negro said...

Nate is right. I could never, ever, ever imagine voting for a Democrat - until Donald Trump appeared the likely nominee. Of course, it may yet prove to be a giant set up - who would be completely surprised if The Donald announced that he is really a Democrat after securing the Republican nomination? Maybe the country just hasn't been fucked over quite hard enough yet to come to their collectives senses.

Brando said...

"How about this: Thus far there is no viable organization to take the place of the GOP to keep the progressives from running the table. Those who think the Dems have already been doing that ought to consider that perhaps you haven't even begun to imagine the dystopia that awaits us."

A lot of people seem to think that the GOP has been so awful at combatting leftism that they would be better off just leaving the Dems in power. But all things considered--and contra what Rubio said two debates ago--Obama has been remarkably ineffective at getting his agenda passed. Immigration, climate change, gun control--he's had to resort to piecemeal executive orders and has been stymied by the courts. Card check failed. Obamacare became a compromised, draft version mess--and this was while the GOP were at their lowest ebb in Congress. His budgets (the one or two that actually passed) weren't great for conservatives, but didn't do much for Obama either. Even most of Bush's tax cuts were made permanent.

It'd be nicer if the GOP could do more, but the main obstacle is mobilizing enough public support to force Dems to support what you want or beat them at the polls so you have enough votes and the WH. But the public support is the main thing, because otherwise a congressional majority will be dependent on swing state/district reps and senators who get skittish about backing something most of their constituents reject.

The real battles must be in the media and popular culture.

buwaya said...

"If somebody says something that is crazily stupid, I pretty much categorize it as crazy and stupid."

This is a rather shallow view of personnel management.
Frederick the Great - "Hünde, wollt ihr euwig leben?" (Dogs, do you want to live for ever?).
To his guards, as they hesitated in an assault at Kolin, where they suffered 50% casualties.

buwaya said...

"No matter who wins the way I see this country heading is toward executive authoritarianism."

The country is there. The lesson of the last six years is that Congress can do next to nothing against the executive and the courts.

CStanley said...

Agree 100%, Brando.

eric said...

The word of the day is out. Pay attention and count how many different talking heads and politicians claim Trump is "disqualified" now because of their pile on.

Race baiting really disgusts me.

EDH said...

"Major partisan realignments do happen in America — on average about once every 40 years.... If a realignment is underway..."


Michael Corleone: How bad do you think it's gonna be?

Clemenza: Pretty goddam bad. Probably all the other Families will line up against us.

That's all right. These things gotta happen every five years or so, ten years. Helps to get rid of the bad blood. Been ten years since the last one.

You know, you gotta stop them at the beginning. Like they should have stopped Hitler at Munich, they should never let him get away with that, they was just asking for trouble.

Anglelyne said...

eric: The word of the day is out. Pay attention and count how many different talking heads and politicians claim Trump is "disqualified" now because of their pile on.

Race baiting really disgusts me.


On a lighter note re this "issue", entertaining video clip of an MSNBC host and Mother Jones bureau chief being their usual earnestly clueless selves, stepping on rake. (Major lulz start around 0:40.)

traditionalguy said...

When Trump in inaugurated he will have few DC allies. He must survive the Co-ordinated attacks from the Washington Post (Bezos) and the FOX News / Wall Street Journal ( Murdoch) and CNN (Clintons)and the Koch Brothers.

He will need Gingrich and Christie to help him sift through the volunteer helpers who are sent over to "help" him by enemies.

But so far Trump has been lucky in his enemies.They seriously underestimate him.

AllenS said...

Anglelyne, too funny!

Hagar said...

They may not be able to define it but they believe in it.

With now nearly a million words in it, I am sure the English language has a descrptive word for what the gentry left believes in, but it is not "socialism."

What they vizualize is something like "Star Trek," where those magnificent starships just somehow materialize out of the cosmos with no sign of any industrial base behind them, and here on earth everybody cultivates a vineyard or runs a quaint country inn and plays the flute.
This ain't no "socialism."

Basil said...

The establishment GOP is going to do to Trump what they did to Ken Cuccinelli in VA. Biting off their nose to spite their face or, less charitably, selling their souls for 40 pieces of silver, trying to keep the government deficit spending rip off going for a few more years with Hillary.

They would literally rather be the minority, so long as the graft keeps coming. They caused the people of the Commonwealth of Virginia to have to suffer the embarrassment of a Terry McAuliffe governorship.

This is why Trump will have lost, if he loses.

Saint Croix said...

Speaking of re-alignment...

Why Liberals Should Vote for Marco Rubio.

That article is really, really good. Kudos to The Atlantic.

Chuck said...

"When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped the flag and carrying a cross."
~ Anonymous (Misattributed to Sinclair Lewis)

Michael K said...

Another reason for Trump is described in this piece about how Bush locked up the donors.

Big mistake.

The story was even more stark when you look at Bush’s impact on super PACs. “There’s a limited amount of resources out there,” Stevens says, “and a vast amount of it went to Right to Rise.” Indeed: Right to Rise had raised a staggering $100 million by the time Bush officially entered the race in June 2015. That hurt his opponents, but didn’t help him. “The evidence is very clear,” says Bill Mayer of Northeastern University, “that the Bush family name helped him with the fundraising, probably helped with the consultants, and hurt him tremendously with the voters.

grackle said...

… for instance, his declaration that he would not allow people to die on the sidewalks (like, presumably, would Rubio, Cruz and most Republicans).

On the “Rubio, Cruz and most Republicans” presumption: You are putting words into Trump’s mouth. Please don’t do that. The readers need quotes and links – not presumptions. On the dying on the “sidewalks” thing: To me it just sounds humane. Are you trying to say that the GOP is all in for allowing the uninsured to die on the sidewalks?

He's also on the record supporting the individual mandate and (not that long ago) single-payer healthcare.

Not that I do not believe the commentor – but can we readers please have some links to these Trump’s statements of “record?”

His defense of Planned Parenthood could come out of the mouth of any Democrat.

Trump has said that he would not support Planned Parenthood if they kept up with the abortions. I haven’t seen any such statement from the mouths of Sanders or Clinton.

He opposes entitlement reform.

I know that social security reform is a popular issue with the GOP elite and that there are several GOP-based schemes to get rid of Social Security. I guess it comes down to who determines who is a Republican, the elite or the rank and file GOP voters? Because the voters seem to want to keep Social Security. So on this issue I will concede that Trump supports the opinion of the rank and file Republican voter and is in opposition to the GOP elite.

He rails against corporations.

Not against corporations, only those American companies that open factories in Mexico. Once again, please do not put words in Trump’s mouth. Give us some quotes or links.

He edges perilously close to protectionism.

What I’m interested in is Trump’s actual positions on the issues – not what the commentor deems to be “perilously close.”

He's taken a hard line on immigration …

And a hard line on immigration is a Democrat position? Really?

… and he's had a recent conversion on abortion.

Yes, we all know Trump is against abortion but how is being against abortion a Democrat position?

Michael K said...

Chuck, that quote comes from a lunatic play "It Could Happen Here" that was a slur on Republicans in the late 30s.

I'm not sure it makes you presumed point.

Diamondhead said...

"He's taken a hard line on immigration …

And a hard line on immigration is a Democrat position? Really?

… and he's had a recent conversion on abortion.

Yes, we all know Trump is against abortion but how is being against abortion a Democrat position?"

Those are quite obviously the exceptions. As to your demand for citations, anyone who's been paying attention to the campaign knows that these are the facts. I've spent more than enough of my life now providing links to low information Trump supporters only to have them say they don't care about anything but the wall anyway. If Trump can shoot someone without losing your support, a video of Trump saying he likes the individual mandate isn't going to do it either.

Drago said...

Michael K: "Chuck, that quote comes from a lunatic play "It Could Happen Here" that was a slur on Republicans in the late 30s.

I'm not sure it makes you presumed point"

Chucks comments here are indistinguishable from your standard MSNBC roundtable discussion transcript.

Take from that what you will.

Michael K said...

"Trump saying he likes the individual mandate"

The individual mandate was a Heritage position for a while. They finally abandoned it as it seemed clumsy and no better than the cross subsidization that was already going on in hospitals. The concept was "the free rider" who is not insured but goes to the ER and they have to treat him/her. I have treated hundreds, maybe thousands.

The individual mandate hd NOTHING to do with an employer mandate that Obama and Pelosi included in Obamacare and which they have ignored since the uproar of enforcing it would tear the Democrats apart. They would lose all union allies, for example.

"I've spent more than enough of my life now providing links to low information Trump supporters "

Oh you poor soul. Has the GOPe done you much good ?

Diamondhead said...

"Has the GOPe done you much good ?"

Yep, here we are...Ted Cruz is GOPe. Rube.

Drago said...

Michael K: "The individual mandate was a Heritage position for a while. They finally abandoned it..."

Actually, wasn't the individual mandate as an idea simply 1 idea promulgated by 1 think tanker at the heritage foundation in a 3 page document?


This idea that the musings of 1 guy at the Heritage foundation suddenly constitutes foundational thinking for the entire foundation and then the Republican Party writ large is basically a garage mahal-level idea.

Not that I don't see your point, mind you.

Drago said...

Diamondhead: "I've spent more than enough of my life now providing links to low information Trump supporters only to have them say they don't care about anything but the wall anyway."

Most of the Trump supporters I know have a much more complex series of beliefs/ideas/anger about particular issues perspectives that cannot really be reduced to 1 item only.

I can't explain why my experience might be different than others, but the complexity of their (Trump supporters) positions forces me to address those concerns in more comprehensive and complex ways as I try to persuade them to align with Cruz for now and keep their current guy as a backup if that's where it goes.

I simply do not approve of calling other republican voters "stupid" or "low information" since, in my experience, every single republican I ever met had, at a minimum, taken the time to familiarize themselves a bit in those areas of most interest to them.

grackle said...

As to your demand for citations, anyone who's been paying attention to the campaign knows that these are the facts.

I’m real leery of “facts” that cannot be substantiated.

aritai said...

Certainly looks like a hostile takeover from over here. We don't see any difference in the way your two parties behave since they've had the same outcomes for decades. But then again your elites think everyone should have equal outcomes for unequal effort and ability. So did we for a while. then we discovered that to be rich is glorious. After your pTb gets thru the nomination and sets his eye's on taking over your not a labor party but pretends to be aka your communist elites, by demonstrating to your voters that he and Sanders have much the same agenda. At least as it appears over here, can anyone post a short list of the differences?. Maybe your best dealmaker will pick Sanders as his VP? He's seen as the only way America can save itself from continuing down the path to being Venezuela. long live the American party until there's something different to argue about. Whigs, Tories, Bull Moose, etc.

He looks like Andrew Jackson's reincarnation, not of either party but the first "Direct Representative of the common Man" in a long long time. No wonder every elite hated him. Hmm. anyone seen your pTb in a Hindu, Buddhist or Druze temple?

Alex said...

Amazing the sheer, childish anger from conservatives directed at Trump. It's hilarious.

Michael K said...

"Yep, here we are...Ted Cruz is GOPe. Rube."

OMG! I'm so ashamed I had to ask a brilliant scholar like yourself to tell us here you find these pearls of wisdom !

Please accept the profound apologies of the "rube." Want to match SAT scores ?

F.C. Medina said...

Attention Grackle, concerning Trump's positions as a mainstream Democrat:

From Immigration To Guns To Abortion, Donald Trump Must Reckon With His Progressive History
http://dailycaller.com/2015/08/26/from-immigration-to-abortion-longtime-democrat-donald-trump-must-reckon-with-his-rich-progressive-history/

From High Taxes To National Health Care, Donald Trump Must Reckon With His Progressive Past
http://dailycaller.com/2015/08/26/from-high-taxes-to-socialized-health-care-donald-trump-must-reckon-with-his-rich-progressive-history/

Michael K said...

"childish anger from conservatives directed at Trump." A lot of conservatives have been expecting this for a while.

Then there are those firmly attached at the GOP tit who are having hysterics. NRO and Weekly Standard among them

NRO lost its Buckley virginity when it fired Derbyshire, a real conservative.

Saint Croix said...

Does anybody have any thoughts about Rubio's health care plan?

It sounds like a big improvement to me, but I'm open to any criticisms or opinions. How is this plan different from Cruz's plan, for instance?

What I know of Trump's plan is that he likes the individual mandate, he doesn't think people should die in the streets, and he thinks Americans should be able to purchase coverage across state lines. Trump says that single-payer "works in Canada and works incredibly well in Scotland."

I note that The Los Angeles Times is linking Trump and the socialist, Bernie Sanders. The headline is that "Trump and Sanders are praising healthcare in other countries."

Any Trump fans want to opine on single-payer?

khesanh0802 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
khesanh0802 said...

James Taranto makes two important points in his column today. Here's one attributable to Michael Barrone: "Many commentators have noticed that blacks constituted a higher percentage of South Carolina Democratic voters this year, 65 percent according to the exit poll, than they did in 2008, 55 percent. But this represents not a surge of blacks into the electorate, but rather the fact that black turnout declined by only 18 percent, whereas white turnout fell nearly in half, by 44 percent." There is a definite enthusiasm gap for the Dems while the R primaries are attracting much larger numbers of voters that 4 years ago. ("Just a week earlier, when Republicans in South Carolina went to the polls, a whopping 738,000 turned out, over 20 percent more than the 603,000 Republicans who voted in 2012 in the GOP's last contested primary." CBS News)

Here's the other from a CNN poll: "Trump’s support among Republicans to be surprisingly broad: He “is dominating” among college graduates (46%), suburbanites (51%), those making more than $50,000 a year (50%) and those under 55 (47%)." Whether the party gurus like it or not Trump has broad support in some critical sectors of the electorate. They will be damn fools if they try to swim against that tide.

Michael K said...

I'm not a Trump fan but the French system is the model for true reform here.

If you want to spend some time reading about how it works, You can go here.

Basically, the French system is funded from payroll deductions and allows market mechanisms which is why it is anathema to Democrats. If you want to pay more to go to a specific doctor or hospital, you can.

It has the highest satisfaction rating in Europe. It has private insurance as the "gap" coverage so you can buy more coverage than the basic plan.

Bay Area Guy said...

@Michael K

I fully agree. NRO and the Weekly Standard have been pathetic this election. They cannot fathom that they, themselves, helped create the Trump momentum, by failing to consolidate around 1 viable, conservative candidate 2 months ago.

rehajm said...

Amazing the sheer, childish anger from conservatives directed at Trump. It's hilarious

I'll describte it as revealing.

Diamondhead said...

"I'm so ashamed I had to ask a brilliant scholar like yourself to tell us here you find these pearls of wisdom !"

And I'm sure because of bon mots like this you consider yourself a master rhetorician.


mccullough said...

This election is tearing the Althouse commentariat apart.

Fabi said...

I have no sympathy for the GOPe.

Remember when the GOPe said: We have to gain back the House to stop Obama!

And the faithful voters delivered the House. And not much at all happened.

Then the GOPe said: We have to gain back the Senate to stop Obama!

And the faithful voters delivered the Senate. And not much at all happened.

Then the GOPe said: We have to gain back the White House!

And the faithful voters said "Do what? Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us. There won't be a third time. And we have nothing to be ashamed of. At all!"

Michael K said...

"you consider yourself a master rhetorician. "

Nope, just a humble voter.

"And the faithful voters delivered the House. And not much at all happened."

If you are interested, that was what happened.

Diamondhead said...

"If you are interested, that was what happened."

Link?

Nancy Reyes said...

How does he define "conservative"?

A quick perusal of FreeRepublic shows the wacko right wing likes Trump, or else hates the others running. The Libertarian blogs, not so much.

But the "invisible man" is the blue collar Democrats, aka "Reagan Democrats". They were the ones that Obama scorened as "clinging to their guns and religion" in that Pennsylvania primary, about those non urban voters, including many of my neighbors who were out of work union members, steal workers or coal miners, thanks to energy policies and international policies that sent their jobs overseas). Trump will get their vote.

They know he is a crook, but hey, they all are crooks, so at least vote for the guy who knows you exist.

Here in the

Original Mike said...

"This idea that the musings of 1 guy at the Heritage foundation suddenly constitutes foundational thinking for the entire foundation and then the Republican Party writ large is basically a garage mahal-level idea."

Actually, this is one of Robert Cook's favorite hobby horses.

Original Mike said...

@Fabi - I think the GOP Congress has done a pretty good job at "stopping Obama". Effecting their own plans is another matter, and that's not too surprising.

Michael K said...

""If you are interested, that was what happened."

Link?"

A link to the House majority ?

Jeez !

Diamondhead said...

"I simply do not approve of calling other republican voters "stupid" or "low information" since, in my experience, every single republican I ever met had, at a minimum, taken the time to familiarize themselves a bit in those areas of most interest to them."

I agree, that would have been counter-productive during the race. From what I understand, it's effectively over and Trump has won. There was an argument over whether or not Trump is a conservative. The people arguing he is not won the substance of the debate and lost the battle, because his voters simply don't care that much about conservative ideology. Trump voters aren't stupid. They see the threat posed by uncontrolled immigration and a borderless country. But they've chosen exactly the wrong medicine.

grackle said...

Attention Grackle, concerning Trump's positions as a mainstream Democrat …
From Immigration To Guns To Abortion, Donald Trump Must Reckon With His Progressive History … From High Taxes To National Health Care, Donald Trump Must Reckon With His Progressive Past …


Yes, yes. We all know that Trump had various opinions in the past. The Daily Caller link references an Anderson Cooper interview that asked Trump about a situation that occurred thirty-five years ago! Pardon me but I think I’ll forgive him for that.

But what about today? Which of Trump’s positions are the same as “mainstream Democrat” positions? It’s a simple question.

Diamondhead said...

"A link to the House majority ?"

Hey, I learned above you can't just throw out factual statements (no matter how self-evident) without linking.

And obviously that is what happened.

gadfly said...

Nate Silver sez:

And if you are a movement conservative, Trump is arguably a pretty terrible choice, taking your conservative party and remaking it in his unpredictable medley of nationalism, populism and big-government Trumpism.

If you’re one of these ideological conservatives, it may even be in your best interest for Trump to lose in November. If Trump loses, especially by a wide margin, his brand of politics will probably be discredited, or his nomination might look like a strange, one-off “black swan” . . .


Conservatives aren't "movement" anythings, else they are not conservative. You simply cannot endorse the concept of "conservatism" unless you put principles first, such as we see in Ted Cruz. There is no wiggle room, so if you wiggle over to Trump and the Hive, you were never a conservative.

As for Nate Silver's observation about "ideological conservatives," there are none of those either. Losing is never a good thing if T-Rump succeeds and then becomes discredited, because he is deemed to be representing conservatives. The next elections would go back to the libs and we will then wait eight more years for another Ronaldus Magnus.

As for casting my lot with either of the criminals that will likely head up the tickets this fall, I pass. I am not naive enough to believe that my vote will make a difference, but I am sensitive enough to know that I would be embarrassed every day until I'm dead that I voted for the Crooked Carny Barker whose 2nd wife and 1st daughter apparently did nude pics (this means, of course, that the Trump VP will be a Kardashian). But back to my point, there are people out there, . . . Ann, who are constantly reminded that they voted for Barry Soetoro. I am voting Libertarian unless Cruz somehow gets the nomination.

Sebastian said...

"And the faithful voters said "Do what? Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us. There won't be a third time. And we have nothing to be ashamed of. At all!" So you prefer a President Trump with a Dem Congress? Why?

Prediction: If Trump is elected Prez and the GOP holds onto the House, the GOP majority will find its anti-Trump footing soon enough.

Michael K said...

OK Maybe you need a remedial lesson on Congress.


I have no sympathy for the GOPe.

Remember when the GOPe said: We have to gain back the House to stop Obama!

And the faithful voters delivered the House. And not much at all happened.

Then the GOPe said: We have to gain back the Senate to stop Obama!

And the faithful voters delivered the Senate. And not much at all happened.

Then the GOPe said: We have to gain back the White House!

And the faithful voters said "Do what? Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us. There won't be a third time. And we have nothing to be ashamed of. At all!"


Here's one that might help you.

As you may know, the Appropriations Committee is split into 12 subcommittees that specialize in specific issue areas, such as Defense, Homeland Security and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development. Each subcommittee is responsible for writing their own bill to fund – or defund – the specific programs within their issue area.

This year, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers will be moving four of the 12 subcommittee bills through a process known as “Regular Order” to better protect taxpayers, create more transparency, and get Congress working the way it’s supposed to again.

The Regular Order process has been left behind over the last 10 years and as a result, Congress has grown increasingly ineffective and more partisan. Regular Order requires that each appropriations bill begin with a “Markup.” This simply means that fellow members of the Appropriations Committee can offer amendments to the bill in order to eliminate programs or shift funding. Then, we vote as a committee to either approve or disapprove of each amendment. Once that process is finished, we can pass the bill out of the Appropriations Committee.

The legislation then goes to the entire House of Representatives for everyone to debate. Regular Order also requires that legislation is considered under an “Open Rule,” which means any Member of Congress can offer an amendment. This is important because it ensures the voices of all Members can be heard – no matter what committee they sit on, their seniority or their party affiliation. Members of the House of Representative then vote on each amendment.

Once all amendments have been voted on, the House votes on the revised bill, which includes all approved amendments. If it is passed, the bill is matched up with the Senate version of the bill and a conference committee negotiates the differences before it is sent to the President for his signature.


The Senate is also in GOP hands since 2012. There should have been, once Harry Reid was not Majority Leader, 12 bills sent to Obama for his signature or veto. Those bills would be debated in public, with public votes and the same procedure we have followed for 200 years,

Instead, we got one Continuing Resolution which Reid used to avoid having to have Democrats vote on specific bills that might be embarrassing. And Obama could veto ONE CR and shut the entire government down.

Why, after we had majorities in both houses, didn't we go to "Regular Order" and introduce, debate and pass 12 bills ?

That way, Democrats would have to vote on individual items, there would be public debate and votes on 12 bills.

Then Obama would have to issue 12 vetoes and not one.

Boehner and McConnell did not do that. Why ?

That is where Trump came from.

Michael K said...

Did that help you, Diamondhead ?

Diamondhead said...

I don't even need to read that. As I said, it's obvious that's exactly where Trump came from.

Fabi said...

@Original Mike: the Continuing Resolution is unforgivable.

Original Mike said...

@Fabi - yeah.

Sebastian said...

"Which of Trump’s positions are the same as “mainstream Democrat” positions? It’s a simple question."

Amnesty.

The Donald, 7/24/2015: "I have to tell you, some of these people have been here; they've done a good job; in some cases sadly they've been living under the shadows," Trump said in his telephone interview. "We have to do something, so whether it's merit, or whether it's whatever, but -- I'm a believer in the merit system. Somebody's been outstanding, we (ought to) try to work something out."

Eric Trump, 11/12/2015: "The point isn’t just deporting them, it’s deporting them and letting them back in legally. He’s been so clear about that and I know the liberal media wants to misconstrue it, but it’s deporting them and letting them back legally."

His actual "immigration reform" proposal on his website explicitly mentions neither expulsion nor readmission. Nor does it deal with reforming the actual immigration system, specifically family preferences that have had far greater impact than illegal immigration.

robother said...

Look. The neocons will all go back to the Democrat Party (already are) because they never really left it on domestic/social policy.
The Libertarian who care most about Free Trade/Open Borders college-educated will either vote for Hillary or sit out the election.

Does anyone seriously imagine that the numbers of these two groups of voters can't easily be replaced (and more) by blue collar Democrats and Independents who didn't vote for the last 3 or 4 Republican Presidential candidates?

Doesn't the turnout numbers for Democrat vs. Republican Primaries already bear that out?

Michael K said...

The guy who asked for links doesn't read them. Good to know.

James Kirkpatrick gets it.

Bush epitomized a corrupt elite He was openly contemptuous of his own people. An Amnesty/Immigration Surge was his top public policy priority. But rather than being humbled by his fall, the Beltway Right seems bizarrely emboldened. They now openly acknowledge they are willing to sacrifice everything, even victory in November, as long as it means stopping Donald Trump.

They are overplaying their hand. Jeb Bush showed all the money and organization in the world means nothing if there is not a market for what you are selling. His fall was a product of substance, not just style.

Conservatism Inc. seems determined to make the same mistake, taking its constituency for granted rather than trying to serve its interests.


Pretty good piece. Lots of links for those who read them.

Fabi said...

@robother: the record-setting vote for the Republicans and subpar turnout for the Democrats is the big story of the primaries. The D's don't want to talk about it because it shows how weak Hillary is. The GOPe don't want to about it because it shows how strong Trump is.

gadfly said...

Original Mike said...
"One recent political forbear might be Jim Trafficant, the late former Democrat congressman from Ohio."

Must be the hair.

Or the time behind bars. Beam me up, Scotty!

Diamondhead said...

You still seriously think I was seriously asking for a link? I don't need a link to tell me the sky is blue. I don't need a link to tell me Trump is the result of Republican perfidy. That is obvious from what I've said. The guy who goes around asking to compare SAT scores has no reading comprehension. Good to know.

gadfly said...

Blogger grackle said...
As to your demand for citations, anyone who's been paying attention to the campaign knows that these are the facts.

I’m real leery of “facts” that cannot be substantiated.

Here is your link on Trump's defense o planned parenthood - dated 2/26/16. Read it and weep.

http://www.lifenews.com/2016/02/26/donald-trump-defends-planned-parenthood-abortion-business-it-helps-millions-of-women/

Michael K said...

"Blogger Diamondhead said...
"If you are interested, that was what happened."

Link?"

"You still seriously think I was seriously asking for a link? I don't need a link to tell me the sky is blue"

Are you sure ?

Anyway, the Kirkpatrick piece is pretty good about what got us here.



Diamondhead said...

Should've been enough context clues to know it was a joke given the reason you started attacking me in the first place.

Saint Croix said...

FWIW...

If it's Trump vs. Clinton...

I'm voting for Gary Johnson.

Phil 3:14 said...

"I fully agree. NRO and the Weekly Standard have been pathetic this election. They cannot fathom that they, themselves, helped create the Trump momentum..."

Interesting, that's what a liberal friend said. Not a criticism, just interesting.

I remember the Democratic Party shift in the early 70s. But that was a losing change (except for the Nixon impeachment/Carter election" Blip.

So if this is a shift, what is the future Republican Party. So far, it's not a party I want to be in.

Jonathan Graehl said...

Michael K is offering good info in good faith. Get your hackles down and learn something.

AllenS said...

Amid Trump surge, nearly 20000 Mass. voters quit Democratic party -- Boston Herald‎ - 7 hours ago

Michael K said...

" you started attacking me in the first place."

I'm not attacking you. You wanted a link and I spent some time composing an answer.

Calm down.

Unknown said...

It will be a shame if the more conservative republicans cannot get on board and at least attempt to push the trump party in their direction from within. They truly have a historic opportunity to remake themselves into a much more vital and receptive party. There are some simple issues they have to accept, immigration control, better trade policies, some method of universal healthcare and preservation of social security. All the rest the trump party really does not care that much about. The budget deficit should be common.

The health care can be market driven but it has to cover everyone and folks in this new lower growth society have to be able to have it.

If they stomp their feet and take their ball home. They will either become more and more irrelevant nationally ( this is my prediction ) or the country will have a declining voter population except for children bearing dmocrat immigrants. Until someone else comes along to represent the forgotten people. Meanwhile the dems will run the table on the diminished republicans.

Sebastian said...

"immigration control" If Trump proposed 1. no amnesty 2. change in preferences in current immigration law, that would be immigration "control" I could support.

"better trade policies" Better in what sense? Our "trade policies" have served us very well on the whole. Specific trade agreements typically lower other countries' tariffs more than ours -- for the simple reason ours are already among the lowest. WTO has had pros and cons for US -- but definitely some pros. Trade also is a weapon -- TPP vs. China. Etc. etc. Yes, trade, has cost jobs, but the "anger" is misplaced: by far the biggest factor in farming/manufacturing job decline is technical change.

"some method of universal healthcare" We have had "universal healthcare" since before O. I agree it can be streamlined and made more rational and efficient. Universal HSA's etc., some subsidized. Rubio is already there, but Trump could do this.

"preservation of social security" In what way? Current system is low-return, subject to political manipulation, unfairly redistributive (from black men to white women, etc.). Better to have a system with higher returns, more choice and control, less unfairness.

Birkel said...

Michael K:

I will match SAT scores. I missed one. Your turn.

Michael K said...

"I will match SAT scores. I missed one. Your turn."

I actually can't remember mine but I was a National Merit Scholar the first year they were awarded, 1956.

They gave 100 that year.

What does "I missed one" mean ?

Michael K said...

"the more conservative republicans cannot get on board and at least attempt to push the trump party in their direction from within."

I think that is what is happening. There are rumors that Gingrich will be his chief of staff. I'm still angry at Gingrich for wounding Romney in 2012 but that would be a good job for Gingrich.

Birkel said...

One question.

Birkel said...

And we both took the SAT before they watered down the test.

Michael K said...

There is an interesting piece from Spengler (David Goldman) on Trump and Israel.

Yet the leading neo-conservatives say they won’t vote for Trump under any circumstances, and one prominent neocon, Robert Kagan, has already declared for Hillary against Trump. Bill Kristol, the editor of the Weekly Standard and head of the Emergency Committee for Israel, has declared that he would never vote for Trump under any circumstances, and so has long-time Republican official Peter Wehner. Kristol has said that he won’t support Hillary, but threatens to mount a third-party effort if Trump is nominated–which would draw Republican votes away from Trump and help Clinton.

But, an important item is ignored.

First, his daughter Ivanka is an observant Orthodox Jew after her conversion and marriage to Jared Kushner, the scion of a prominent family of Jewish philanthropists. Second, and most decisive, Trump feels no obligation to win favor among Muslims, proposing a temporary ban against any Muslim entering the United States. Hillary Clinton, by contrast, surrounded herself with advisers openly hostile to Israel and pondered covert funding for Palestinian civil disobedience to pressure the Israeli government.

It is a very odd year.

When I took the SAT, there were no "prep" courses and we weren't told our scores. I was kidding about comparing.

I did have a 98.6 average on the National Board of Medical Examiners part I and II.

Michael K said...

More on the craziness of the GOPe. McConnell is telling GOP Senators to run against Trump if he is the nominee.

Ruling Class vs Country Class.

Birkel said...

I was too poor to take a prep course, LMAO. And nobody in my neighborhood would have been available to teach them, anyway. I knew you were kidding, of course. Just bull shifting about giving a damn, really. I gather we have both accomplished things of which we can be proud, professionally and personally.

I just cannot resist saying "I missed one" because the one I missed sticks in my craw even though most people would have been satisfied. My high school principal offered to pay for me to take it again because he knew i couldn't afford a second test. I declined. I had a girlfriend, LOL.

wildswan said...

Michael K
Thanks for your work on what a Republican Congress is doing to restore the budget process. It needed to be said.

I think that Hillary is far more embarrassing than Trump - defending her rapist husband AND talking about being a feminist. Exposing national secrets to the Chinese and Russians and boasting that she will get away with it. Accepting bribes in the form of payment for speeches while talking about opposition to Wall Street. Ignoring the security situation in Libya which resulted in the murder of an ambassador. Lying about the cause of the attack in Benghazi to the American people; imprisoning a man she knew to be innocent. Collapsing a regime in Lybia and running out on fixing the situation she created. Supporting Planned Parenthood which is wiping out the blacks and saying black lives matter to her.
And then people say: Trump is embarrassing. Hillary is mainstream. Mainstream of Hell, maybe.



gadfly said...

Washington (CNN)- Republican Sen. Ben Sasse said Sunday he won't vote for Donald Trump if the billionaire and GOP presidential front-runner becomes his party's nominee.

"If Trump becomes the Republican nominee my expectation is that I'll look for some 3rd candidate -- a conservative option, a Constitutionalist," Sasse, a first-term senator from Nebraska, tweeted Sunday night.

"If the nation that put a man on the moon can't do any better than nominating two fundamentally dishonest New York liberals, I think the American people deserve a better choice than that and I think they'll get a better choice," Sasse said of Trump and Clinton.

"I'm not going to vote for Hillary Clinton, and given what we know about Donald Trump, I can't vote for that guy either ... If we got to a place where those are the two major party nominees, and I certainly hope that they're not, I'd have to look for a third-party option," he told Jake Tapper.

Sebastian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sebastian said...

Gail Collins on that already infamous "secret" "off-the-record" session at the NYT: "The most optimistic analysis of Trump as a presidential candidate is that he just doesn’t believe in positions, except the ones you adopt for strategic purposes when you’re making a deal. So you obviously can’t explain how you’re going to deport 11 million undocumented immigrants, because it’s going to be the first bid in some future monster negotiation session." Prediction: the outcome of the negotiations will be: 1. Congress agrees to downpayment on bigger wall; 2. expedited procedures to expel criminal aliens; 3. authority for Prez to negotiate Mexican contribution in some fashion; 4. and, gosh darn it, they talked him into it, art of the deal and all that, Trump "reluctantly" agrees to give up on general expulsion, accepts gradual legalization for "good ones" instead. Gang of 535 goes along with the deal.

Fabi said...

Did Sasse endorse Cruz or Rubio?

chickelit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chickelit said...

If Trump becomes the Republican nominee my expectation is that I'll look for some 3rd candidate -- a conservative option, a Constitutionalist," Sasse, a first-term senator from Nebraska, tweeted Sunday night.

He should be more honest like Jeb Bush. He'll vote for Hillary Clinton. In private of course. In a closeted voting booth.

Birkel said...

chickelit:

Do you believe Senator Sasse is serious in his convictions? Do you believe he is more principled than Bush?

Finally, do you plan to sway principled voters or just piss them off?

Original Mike said...

"4. and, gosh darn it, they talked him into it, art of the deal and all that, Trump "reluctantly" agrees to give up on general expulsion, accepts gradual legalization for "good ones" instead."

That would be easier than deporting them all and then letting the good ones back in, which is his stated plan after all.

rcocean said...

Maybe the "Conservatives" can form a new party, if Trump wins. They can call it "Country Clubs United" or the "Plutocrats". Their key issues will be:

- Open borders
- Replacement of American Workers with More H-1B visas
- Cutting social security
- Secret trade deals
- Working with Reid and Pelosi to get more liberal judges
- Cutting the Capital Gains tax
- More Wars in the Middle east.

They should crush Hillary and Trump.

Birkel said...

Original Mike:

Also, Trump is a lying flim-flam artist who has stated his "position" so "inartfully" that he can just pretend to give a shit.

Birkel said...

rcocean:

Name the policy victories you expect a President Trump to win.

chickelit said...

I'll be honest birkel:

Sasse has never been on my radar. Jeff Sessions has been. We can't all sit around blogs all day learning the names of new gurus.

chickelit said...

My Twitter feed is so unbearable I feel that can no longer contribute. Surely that's a win for someone.

Birkel said...

honesty works for me

Birkel said...

Twitter is stupid in bite sized portions. I prefer to chew my stupid thoroughly.

grackle said...

Prediction: If Trump is elected Prez and the GOP holds onto the House, the GOP majority will find its anti-Trump footing soon enough.

Counter-prediction: The House and Senate Republicans will soon realize that Trump has very large coattails and commands a sizable crossover vote and will fall all over themselves in their haste to endorse him.

The Donald, 7/24/2015: "I have to tell you, some of these people have been here; they've done a good job; in some cases sadly they've been living under the shadows," Trump said in his telephone interview. "We have to do something, so whether it's merit, or whether it's whatever, but -- I'm a believer in the merit system. Somebody's been outstanding, we (ought to) try to work something out."

Securing the border instead of watching while they cross over, hiring many more ICE agents and Border Patrol, the incarceration and deportation of illegal alien felons instead of the let’um go policy of Obama, enforcing laws already on the books, all these practical steps will alleviate the current problem of illegal aliens. Couple these steps with the e-Verify system as mandatory at the point of hire and it’s really all that’s needed. Icing on the cake is defunding sanctuary cities. This is all on Trump’s website.

What Trump is really doing here is allowing self-deportation to occur, a term I’m sure he is reluctant to use since it helped sink Romney’s ship in the last election. With self-deportation they round themselves up and head back home because they cannot be hired. It’s the humane way, considering the other options.

On the idea of merit: I’ve seen a similar concept embedded in several conservative-based proposals in the past. The basic idea is that we only accept the educated and skilled. No peasants allowed. It looks like Trump is buying into that concept. I disagree for the simple reason that most of these people are leaving countries in which the elite are the prime reason things are so screwed up in their societies. We need those elites like we need a hole in the head. Let them stay where they have ruined things. But I do not have to agree with every aspect of Trump’s policies to vote for him. The main thing is to secure the border. All the rest flows from that.

His actual "immigration reform" proposal on his website explicitly mentions neither expulsion nor readmission.

It doesn’t need to. Laws already on the books, which are not currently enforced by Obama, take care of that.

Nor does it deal with reforming the actual immigration system, specifically family preferences that have had far greater impact than illegal immigration.

To me all the steps mentioned above equals reform with a capital R. It is certainly different than what is happening now. And I am not as sure as the commentor that family preferences for US citizens, which is legal, is more of a problem than illegal immigration.

Birkel said...

I predict self-delusion as ma in her kerchief and pa in his cap, wake from their long Trumpian nap.

Original Mike said...

"Securing the border instead of watching while they cross over, hiring many more ICE agents and Border Patrol, the incarceration and deportation of illegal alien felons instead of the let’um go policy of Obama, enforcing laws already on the books, all these practical steps will alleviate the current problem of illegal aliens. Couple these steps with the e-Verify system as mandatory at the point of hire and it’s really all that’s needed."

This plan is not unique to Trump.

grackle said...

Here is your link on Trump's defense o planned parenthood - dated 2/26/16. Read it and weep.

I know Trump’s Planned Parenthood stance. The link only confirmed it. He’s for defunding Planned Parenthood until they quit the abortion mill business. Since I’m pro-life in my own viewpoint, I agree. I’m not weeping; I’m smiling.

grackle said...

This[immigration] plan is not unique to Trump.

I do not see the point. All of these concepts have been discussed and debated for many years by countless people. Is there anything under the sun that hasn’t been thought before about immigration?

Conservative ideals said...

The Funniest thing - John Oliver skewers Trump. No - Trump won't redefine the party. If you haven't seen it yet check it out on youtube - John Oliver Trump - it should come right up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnpO_RTSNmQ

Douglas said...

If Trump gets the nomination and loses it will be like Germany after WWI, which only lost because it was "stabbed in the back" by the ________ [fill in the blank}.

Douglas said...

The most effective way to stop illegal immigration would be to require every citizen and legal resident to carry on their persons at all times, and to produce for the police upon request, a biometrically secure federally issued ID card, and to make it illegal to hire anyone for any purpose who doesn't present such an ID card prior to being hired. How many Trumpkins would go for that, I wonder?

grackle said...

The most effective way to stop illegal immigration would be to require every citizen and legal resident to carry on their persons at all times, and to produce for the police upon request, a biometrically secure federally issued ID card, and to make it illegal to hire anyone for any purpose who doesn't present such an ID card prior to being hired. How many Trumpkins would go for that, I wonder?

Doesn’t E-verify accomplish about the same thing? With E-Verify, which is already mostly a voluntary program(it’s mandatory for certain govt. employers), employment eligibility is established at the point of hire. Making E-Verify mandatory, which is one of the immigration reforms proposed by Trump, would seem to me to solve the problem without having to issue a national ID to every citizen in the USA – which BTW, many on the Right oppose.

Kirk Parker said...

Ron,

"Thus they are called Evangelicals. Who said they did care about limited government or the free market?"

You would be surprised. There are millions of us who manage to have concerns about more than one topic.

David,

"[Trump] will scare the shit out of our allies and opponents, which may be good or may be bad, depending on how ably he can manipulate their fear. "

That would be a welcome change from the current state of affairs.

Unk,

"some method of universal healthcare"

Nonsense. We certainly do fine without a fedgov-managed retail grocery sector. Our problem in healthcare is too much government involvement, not too little.

Birkel said...

grackle:

Your appointment for future "I told you so" is reserved.