April 2, 2016

"If they wanted to, the delegates could deploy a 'nuclear option' on Trump and vote to unbind themselves on the first ballot..."

"... a strategy Ted Kennedy unsuccessfully pursued against Jimmy Carter in 1980," observes Nate Silver.
Although I’d place fairly long odds against this thermonuclear tactic, there’s also the possibility of piecemeal skirmishes for delegates. In South Carolina, for instance, delegates might unbind themselves on the pretext that Trump withdrew his pledge to support the Republican nominee. Remember those chaotic Nevada caucuses that Trump won? They could be the subject of a credentials challenge. There could also be disputes over the disposition of delegates from Marco Rubio and other candidates who have dropped out of the race. A final possibility is “faithless delegates,” where individual delegates simply decline to vote for Trump despite being bound to do so by party rules. It’s not clear whether this is allowed under Republican rules, but it’s also not clear what the enforcement mechanism would be.
By convention time, we'll know what the margin is. If Trump has the majority, 1,237, or a bit more, there is still a game to be played. If he has only 1,237, the majority is lost if just one of those delegates flips, for any of a range of technical or political reasons. Trump has to keep wrangling his delegates, and how will he do that among these "mostly dyed-in-the-wool Republican regulars and insiders"?

Trump has a lot of pride in his knowledge of how things work in the real world — how China is "killing us" in these trade deals, etc. etc. — other politicians are naive and he's the one man who can bring expertise in handling wily people who are trying to take advantage. But the real world of this delegate game has brought him up short. It must really hurt his pride, privately, and it hurts his image publicly.

Remember how, in his meeting with the RNC about the wrangling of the delegates, "Mr. Trump turned to his aides and suggested that they had not been doing what they needed to do." That's a nightmare for him. He suddenly sees the dimension of the game he's been so proud of playing so well, and he's ill-equipped to enlarge the operation into something that can work in the coming phase. I'm picturing him losing heart, losing steam. He got so inflated about the polls and how much he'd been winning. And now he sees he's only winning in Part 1, and he didn't even understand Part 2. He doesn't have a team that could play Part 2.

Trump is going to have to rely entirely on a direct appeal to the people. He'll argue that it's outrageous and undemocratic to deny him the nomination. But the decision will be made at a convention where there's a vote — that's democracy too — of a set of delegates. And a majority of them are going to be opposed to him — even if a majority are pledged to him.

104 comments:

Achilles said...

Robspierre is waiting in the wings.

coupe said...

The whole primary and party convention system should be declared unconstitutional.

The electoral system has run its course. It is a corrupt 20th Century enterprise, and can be likened to legalized prostitution.

Bob Boyd said...

Will Trump, having destroyed the Republican Primary process and all the other candidates, just quit?
I remember how excited so many were about Ross Perot and his plain talk, "We just need to get under the hood and fix it."
In the end, Perot just quit.

mccullough said...

Trump doesn't want to be president. He's enjoying running for president as his last hurrah of publicity and it's going better than he thought it would. He's turning over the company to his kids. But I don't think he'd mind destroying the national GOP and severely weakening Hillary in the process. The cult rules of delegate counts don't matter at this point. The national GOP is through. It will be a much smaller cult after this election cycle and won't be able to compete at the national level again until it changes its policies and finds new leaders. And Paul Ryan isn't one of them.

traditionalguy said...

It's Trump's own fault for being so stubborn.

We all know that Trump would win by unanimous acclamation the first day if he simply states that he will now take special interest money, preferably in fifty ten million dollar increments bundled by Karl Rove's Bush connections ( i.e., from Saudi spare change) and a one time hundred million dollar signing bonus from Koch Industries, and a night with Megyn Kelly prepaid by Rupert Murdoch.



Michael K said...

The Trump phenomenon is just part of the decline. Obama was the first magical president. Clinton I was a fluke of Bush I's fecklessness in ignoring his promise and his failure to finish Gulf Water I. Clinton ignored Osama while the GOP Congress produced a stock market bull run. The Housing Bubble began under Clinton as he expanded the CRA. The 9/11 attacks weakened the economy badly, much as the 1906 earthquake led to the Panic of 1907 and then to the Federal Reserve Bank.

Greenspan decided to reinstall the Internet Bubble that popped in 2000 and the CRA and ACORN led the charge to go into debt and flip houses. Spengler says the world invested all its assets in US houses, and it all came crashing down in 2008.

China didn’t take American manufacturing jobs because wealth was leaving the United States. China took American manufacturing jobs because wealth was entering the United States. America was the mecca for savings, risk-taking, venture capital, entrepreneurship–or so we styled ourselves. Those were heady days. In 2001 my friend Arthur Laffer, the great supply-side economist, gave a seminar for my team at Credit Suisse (where I head Global Credit Strategy) and argued that America didn’t need to manufacture anything. We would provide the patents and other countries would do the dirty work.

Well, here we are with the Chicago Teachers' Union trying to get blood out of the stone that is Illinois.

There is no money. Spengler is not completely right. I agree with one of the comments.

Donald Trump never said that America’s sent its wealth overseas. He said America forced companies to move overseas or die as the result of "free" trade agreements.

It is not hard to understand that every manufacturing job creates many jobs outside the factory, many of them middle class. Close a manufacturing plant and a supply chain of producers disappears. Dozens of companies get hurt: those supplying design, automation, robotics, packaging, office equipment and supplies; telecommunications services; research and development; marketing and sales support; building and equipment maintenance and janitorial services. Allowing a manufacturing sector to die is like cutting off a piece of yourself.

The publication, Plant Closing News (PCN) regularly features 75 or more plant closings per issue, or 150 per month.


It looks to me now that the GOP will probably get the nomination away from Trump, who was a gamble anyway, and the decline will accelerate under Hillary or, if she is indicted, Biden.

There is no secret money stash so Bernie is out of luck. The down escalator is shutting into high gear.

Michael K said...

God, autocorrect is running wild. It wrote about 20% of that comment.

mccullough said...

The blue collar whites that are the core of Trump's supporters should just permanently disengage from the political process. Neither party has anything for them. Just retreat into your own safe spaces like college girls do

Michael K said...

"Just retreat into your own safe spaces like college girls do"

I'm not a "blue collar white" and I was not a "Trump supporter" but I am living in a safe suburb and am buying gold.

I expect my kids will use it to survive.

SteveR said...

Yes the process is not easily understood as logical, fair or democratic. So many people -- people who have significant experience and expertise -- screwed this whole thing and now we are left with the hope that the Justice Dept will do the right thing. Good job.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

So the GOPe is going to blow up the party and lose to Hillary, or whoever the Democrat nominee is? I suppose that if they believe this is all going to blow over and that Trump supporters will come back to the GOP that is an option, but I believe that analysis is mistaken.

The GOP likes to boast about how they are capturing the majority of governorships and state legislatures. I think if they repudiate the Trump supporters they are going to be shocked how quickly that is reversed as a third party forms (not necessarily controlled by Trump) that addresses their issues.

Supposedly a third party is not supposed to be viable in the US because one of the the two major parties will address the concerns for electoral advantage. But we seem to have reached a situation where the GOPe and the Democrat party refuse to do so because of members of their coalitions will lose out economically if they do.

What happens then? Both parties' strategy seems to be based on hoping that the demographic in question dies off so that they don't have to address their issues.

traditionalguy said...

Trump's stubbornly answers out of Nehimiah 6:11, " Should a man such as I run away or go into the Temple to save his life?"

Wall Builders are used to continuous opposition.

Chuck said...

Trump supporters have repeatedly pressed me to declare whether I'd vote for Trump if he was the nominee. I have generally replied in the affirmative, despite my ardent and unending opposition to his getting the nomination.

Now - Trump supporters; will you support the nominee if it isn't Trump?

mccullough said...

Michael K,

The GOP is every but as much to blame as the Dems. W pushed the ownership society of everyone gets a home mortgage and a college loan bullshit as much as Clinton or any Dem, and he let Wall Street create ridiculous financial instruments to magnify the problem of the "ownership society" so his friends there could make a shitload of money. He even agreed to Goldman Sachs handpicked Treasury Secretary, Hank Paulson, who did a brilliant job of ushering through the TARP bailout for Wall Street.

Obama is no worse a president than W was. They both suck and for pretty much the same reason.

But stick with the cult thinking. It's too late to change now

mccullough said...

Maybe the delegates could pick Hillary as the GOP nominee. She's pretty much the same as her friend W

Qwinn said...

"Obama is no worse a president than W was."

Um, I have no great love for W's socialism light, but this statement is patently absurd. W may have issued TARP in, but he didn't do anything remotely like turning it into part of the baseline budgeting for the next 7 years via continuing resolutions.

Qwinn said...

I suppose that if they believe this is all going to blow over and that Trump supporters will come back to the GOP that is an option, but I believe that analysis is mistaken. "

Assumes facts not in evidence, i.e., that most Trump supporters were ever part of the GOP to begin with.

David Ragsdale said...

"This Weekend, Althouse sponsored by Wisconsinites for Growth, Charles Sykes & Liz Mair."

Michael K said...

"Obama is no worse a president than W was. They both suck and for pretty much the same reason.

But stick with the cult thinking. It's too late to change now"

Aside from the insults, I agree with some of what you write. Both Bush and Thatcher pushed home ownership on the delusion that middle class things make the owner behave in middle class fashion.

Goldman Sachs has had far too much influence and Paulson was a poor choice but he was not Bush;s only choice, The housing bubble was chiefly the result of the CRA and Democrats with their allies ACORN, a criminal enterprise. TARP was sold dishonestly and I recommend an excellent book on the whole story called, After the Fall, by Nicole Gelinas. If you don;t want to read the book, you could rad my summary of it in the reviews. It's the highest rated review,.

"Obama is no worse a president than W was"

Obama is the worst president in American history. Bush was average and possibly slightly less successful than Clinton, aside from Clinton's behavior.

As for insults, I concede the trophy to you.

Achilles said...

Obama and Bush are tied for number of giant entitlements passed. I think Obama has started more shitty foreign entanglements. Both moved us down the police state path though I think Obama is clearly going after his policy enemies rather than the country's enemies.

Obama is only worse by degrees.

traditionalguy said...

Choices, choices. Should we make North America Great for the first time like Cruze the religious liar promises, or continue to make the Iranian Empire great again like Hillary the lover of an Iranian promises, or make America great again like Trump The Conquerer of all he sees promises?

Where is Harry Truman when we need him?

Qwinn said...

"Both moved us down the police state path though I think Obama is clearly going after his policy enemies rather than the country's enemies.

Obama is only worse by degrees."

I agree with the first sentence completely, and I think it rebuts your second sentence entirely. That is very much a complete difference in kind, not just degree.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Assumes facts not in evidence, i.e., that most Trump supporters were ever part of the GOP to begin with.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDAmPIq29ro

The Cracker Emcee said...

"Assumes facts not in evidence, i.e., that most Trump supporters were ever part of the GOP to begin with"

Bing-O! While purely anecdotal, every flesh and blood Trump supporter I've talked to has little or no love for the Bush/McCain/Romney GOP. Which, if at all representative, explains a lot.

Before complaining of double standards, understand that they have nothing but contempt for the Democrats, but you can't be betrayed by people you had no expectations of to begin with. Hence, their animus is reserved for the GOPe

rhhardin said...

Trump so far doesn't have a problem. He may not win under queered rules, but he'll still be the anti-establishment guy.

Unless he caves to them.

bbkingfish said...

So, do you think Paul Ryan has the inside track to be Jeb's VP?

buwaya puti said...

A matter of perspective -
Trump has performed incredibly well in this, devastating every other candidates campaign no matter how well funded, and every one was supported by the best political professionals in the business.
And this was done by a political amateur, with a team of, mainly, political amateurs, spending ridiculously less. The quibble about wrangling delegates seems a bit of a quibble. He may not, in the end, win through, but considering what he was up against, getting to within a hair of victory is tremendous. This implies leadership abilities beyond the ordinary, which in reality count for more than detailed knowledge. One can learn, or hire, that knowledge, but one can't learn or hire such political skills.

buwaya puti said...

In summary, regarding political strategy and tactics and process, Trump has gotten far more right than wrong, and the professionals much more wrong than right.

PB said...

Remember the GOP doesn't think much of open primaries. They have a rule that invalidates delegates from those states.

mccullough said...

W started Iraq, which was incredibly stupid. His stupid impose democracy on the Muslims and set them free was the dumbest thing since Viet Nam. Obama made a lot of stupid decisions as well but nothing as dumb as invading Iraq. Libya was a JV disaster compared to Iraq

Michael K said...

"Trump has gotten far more right than wrong, and the professionals much more wrong than right."

I agree. It may not be enough but he has certainly exposed the gap between the GOP and its voters.

mccullough said...

Buwaya,

The professionals aren't any good but they are mad because they are getting exposed as the useless hucksters they are. Trump's campaign has done a lot of good in exposing the GOP as the dessicated charlatans they are. They just want to hold on to their sinecures because they have no useful skills. They aren't even good at politics.

jdniner said...

Trumps is what cures you.

Michael K said...

"W started Iraq, which was incredibly stupid. His stupid impose democracy on the Muslims and set them free was the dumbest thing since Viet Nam. Obama made a lot of stupid decisions as well but nothing as dumb as invading Iraq. Libya was a JV disaster compared to Iraq"

Standard Democrat line.

Invading Iraq was a decision based on a lot of facts which you ignore. Trying to make Iraqis democrats was a mistake in retrospect but was a worthwhile try to see if Arabs could rule themselves without tyrants. We now know they can't.

Obama's decisions in Iraq and Syria have probably destroyed Europe and Turkey. It's only fair as they celebrated him.

Daniel Richwine said...

Almost 8 million people have voted for Trump so far. Way more than any other GOP candidate. If he commands a big lead and doesn't win the nomination, it would be sickening.

mezzrow said...

Popcorn futures, I tell you. This will actually deliver the excitement that Labron promised to bring back to Cleveland. Something will make history, but I can't tell yet whether that will be a good thing.

Amanda said...

Maybe he'll get them to riot, that'll convince the RNC to give him the nomination.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

If he doesn't have the majority of delegates at the convention he will not get the nomination. That's clear. Full stop.

Especially given his performances these past several days with his abject inability to put two coherent paragraphs together on nearly any policy matter.

His supporters will figuratively riot and burn the party down; but they plan to do that even if he wins. That's a given.

Anyway, as Les Moonves says, it'll be great for ratings. When they write the party platform it's going to be just amazing to watch.

Barry Dauphin said...

If Trump doesn't actually want to be the nominee and become president, then being denied at the convention would be a dream come true. He could wear the victim status proudly as he creates a vast new array of revenue streams fueled by that indignity.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

Trump has gotten nothing right. Not a single thing.

Where has he been for the past two decades? Partying with Democrats and liberals. He's been part of the problem.

A few speeches does not mean he's right. If you continue to fall for his words - which change hourly - then shame on you. How many times can this man fool you before you realize he's a grifter?

Michael K said...

"Maybe he'll get them to riot,"

No, the riots are all by the left. Even you know that much,

cubanbob said...

Its amazing all of this constant talk about Trump blowing up the Republican Party, the brokered convention and the unknown 'savior' nominee yet the real deal is over on the Democrat side. Trump for all of his vices isn't a Communist or the subject of an FBI criminal investigation. If the Trumpists are supposedly not going to vote for whomever the Party's elders and betters select why would anyone one believe the Bernadette's are going to vote for the criminal and Wall Street pal Hillary Clinton? Why assume only the Republican Convention will be the brokered convention. Its just as likely the Democrats will have a brokered convention especially if Sanders gets enough delegates to be credible and he isn't the one who is facing an indictment or death by FBI leaks.

Beldar said...

This stuff about the entire convention "unbinding itself" on the first ballot is stupid, and contrary to what I've read from Nate Silver himself on many other occasions.

In fact, as Silver well knows, what binds state delegates is not the GOP rules, but rather state statutes which typically empower every party's state executive committee to make delegate allocation rules that then have the force of law and, in many instances, may be compelled through writ of mandamus issued by a court from that state.

Thus, even if the RNC passed a new rule purporting to unbind Texas' GOP delegates on the first ballot, those delegates could still be compelled by court order to cast their first-ballot votes in accordance with the allocation resulting from the Texas GOP primary on March 1st.

In short, this post is more misinformation than information.

Fabi said...

@Chuck: I'm not a Trump voter, but I'll answer as a Cruz voter -- I'll support either Trump or Cruz as the nominee. If it's anyone else, I'd have to think about it. If it's someone outside of the primary process, e.g., Romney, Ryan, then no.

Fabi said...

Let me clarify my 1:32 -- If it's Ryan or Romney, then no. If it's someone outside of the primary process such as Robert Gates, then I might consider it.

Michael said...

Ha! Those "delegates" won't be delegates again if that happens, Professor.

Ann Althouse said...

"Ha! Those "delegates" won't be delegates again if that happens, Professor."

How do you figure that? I'm thinking the GOP insiders will coax defections and opportunities within the party will be incentives.

Amanda said...

"Maybe he'll get them to riot,"

"No, the riots are all by the left."

We shall see.

http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/16/politics/donald-trump-ted-cruz-brokered-convention/

"Donald Trump and Ted Cruz warned fellow Republicans Wednesday of dire consequences if the GOP establishment attempts to have a brokered convention this summer.

"I think you'd have riots. I think you'd have riots," Trump said Wednesday on CNN's "New Day." "I'm representing a tremendous many, many millions of people.""

Ann Althouse said...

If you are for Trump, it's no use consoling yourself with assurances that stuff like this can't happen.

That's the approach the insiders took last summer and fall as they failed to take serious action against Trump.

damikesc said...

Libya was a JV disaster compared to Iraq

Invading Iraq didn't lead to the elites of several countries deciding to kill off their countries by taking in "refugees" en masse. Hillary's Libya policies might kill off the EU (which would be good) and turn Europe into an Islamic continent (which would be bad)

Ann Althouse said...

"Roger Stone, the longtime Republican political operative and current ally of Donald Trump, says he’s trying to organize protests at the Republican convention in Cleveland this summer to disrupt any effort by the party to “steal” the nomination from the frontrunner.... Stone told BuzzFeed News over email that he is planning “#DaysofRage,” a seeming reference to the Weatherman-organized Days of Rage protests that took place in Chicago in 1969. Asked to elaborate, Stone said he was talking about “rally-protests -at delegate hotels street theater.”"

Meade said...

"W started Iraq"

The Sykes–Picot Agreement started Iraq.

Carol said...

Why assume only the Republican Convention will be the brokered convention

Superdelegates, that's why.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

What is wrong with copying the Weathermen? Things worked out pretty well for a pal of one of their leaders.

Oh, yeah, right wing violence bad, left wing violence good.

Amanda said...

Roger Stone, organizing the "#DaysofRage", what a loyal subject. Envision it, millions of Trump supporters outraged over the nomination being stolen from him. Sounds promising...or threatening. We'll see if Trump followers will lay down and take the insult to their guy, the one who promised to save them, to empower them, to Make America Great Again.

tim maguire said...

The Democrats got their anti-democratic features (superdelegates) out in the open long ago so the fights all happened when the repercussions were limited. The Republicans are going to debut their anti-democatic features at the convention when it will do maximum damage.

Can't anybody here play this game?

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Michael K:

Don't buy gold if you are planning for the apocolypse. It is very hard to make transactions, especially smaller ones, with gold bars.

Far better to by "junk" US silver coins. Junk in the sense that they have no numismatic value.

The benefit to a silver coin is that a silver quarter will always be recognized as having X ounces of silver in it. Unless it is badly worn, no need to weigh it.

Me, I am doing no prepping. I am following John C Dvorak's Meta-Prep plan, as explained on the no agenda show www.noagendashow.com . I find out which of my neighbors are preppers, I get a bunch of guns and ammo. When the apocolypse comes I go out and take their stuff.

John Henry

buwaya puti said...

Iraq started Iraq. The modern history of Iraq was unsettled even prior to WWI.
It was always a low level war between Shiite, Sunni, Kurd, Turk and Persian, not to mention Christian Assyrians and Jews. The worst internal security problems the British had in the 1920s is that they took on the job of keeping the lid on this ever-boiling pot, and especially that they attempted to rule the place to begin with, and that they imposed an alien puppet monarch, and etc. The Sykes-Picot agreement was about Anglo-French territorial splits and is not the root of the matter.
Most of the British campaigning was against the Kurds and the raiding Ikhwan (the ISIS of its day) out of Arabia.
Ref. "War in the Desert" JB Glubb, "Enemy on the Euphrates" Rutledge, among many others of course. Extremely well documented, this mess.
Short answer is that Iraq was always going to be someone's problem.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Chuck,

Would it not depend on who the nominee is? If Cruz, I would support him. If Romney, I would probably support Hilary or Bernie.

I am not a "member" of the Republican party though I generally lean that way. I feel no obligation at all to support them. I will support whichever nominee I think will do the most to drage the country in a liberal direction. In 2008 and 2012 that was Obama.

I would support the Libertarian Party if it were more serious. It seems to be getting that way and perhaps now is the time to start.

John Henry

buwaya puti said...

As for Trump, I speak of Trump the politician. His accomplishment, like it or not, is enormous, considering that he came from the outside with no previous experience or track record in the business. And considering that he managed it all so ridiculously cheaply.
This was not a matter of a few speeches - and if it really was, a matter of a few speeches, then Good Lord, they should be studying those speeches for decades.
It's silly to blame Trump supporters and etc. for all this. These supporters are the prizes in a political campaign, as are all voters. He won them, the others didn't.

Fabi said...

An update on the agitator who was pepper sprayed at the Trump rally: police found no proof that she was groped. There was no video evidence to support her claims and none of the dozen people interviewed by police confirmed her story, either. No charges to be filed against the falsely-accused groper -- thank goodness. Charges are likely against the agitator, possibly disorderly conduct and/or assault. AP has the story.

Michael K said...

"Far better to by "junk" US silver coins. Junk in the sense that they have no numismatic value. "

Friends of mine were buying bags of silver coins in the 70s. They had the same argument and I agree.

I just wish I had some of the silver dollars that the casinos used to use as chips when I was in college. I remember driving over to Vegas to The Flamingo one night, arriving at 7AM. When we walked into the casino, a drunk was still playing blackjack from the night before. He had the table covered with silver dollars. The manager went over to him and begged him to go to bed.The dealer was exhausted. He agreed if he played one more hand and lost. He bet the entire table of silver dollars on one hand. There must have been hundreds. As we watched, he won. They were still counting silver dollars as we left. That was in my wild younger days.

I was at another casino one night when a guy made 22 passes on the craps table. The dice were still in a window years later. Millions changed hands that night.

I like 1 oz coins but have some smaller ones. I have a gold $2.50 coin on my money clip. It was minted in 1906. It's a quarter eagle.

By the time it's an issue I will probably not care. I would if I were 40.

Michael K said...

"If it's someone outside of the primary process such as Robert Gates, then I might consider it."

It's interesting to see the talk about Gates. He liked Hillary as Sec State although State was pretty ineffective and DoD had to keep picking up the pieces in Iraq and Afghanistan. His book is excellent and I can't recommend it highly enough.

He has no use to 98% of Obama's people but says little about Obama except how surprised he was to be asked to stay.

He loved being president of Texas A&M and I doubt he would be interested unless it was a request from both parties in some sort of caretaker government, which is not impossible.

Truman said that Eisenhower would never get used to being president and having to deal with equals. I think he was the best since Coolidge. Maybe Gates could do it, too, but I doubt he would take it except in a crisis, which possible.

Chuck said...

Would it not depend on who the nominee is? If Cruz, I would support him. If Romney, I would probably support Hilary or Bernie.

I am not a "member" of the Republican party though I generally lean that way. I feel no obligation at all to support them. I will support whichever nominee I think will do the most to drage the country in a liberal direction. In 2008 and 2012 that was Obama.

I would support the Libertarian Party if it were more serious. It seems to be getting that way and perhaps now is the time to start.


I know that there are other people who have varying versions of this same thought. And I have found it to be profoundly weird in every case. I remember the New Hampshire voters who were featured in an attention-getting New York Times story, saying that "Bernie is my Number 1, but Trump is my Number 2."

Given that you support Cruz, and have some libertarian leanings, how on earth could a Mitt Romney candidacy drive you to vote for a Democrat Hillary Clinton or a socialist Bernie Sanders?

Setting aside the loose cannon of the Trump candidacy, every Republican is at least about 80-90 percent the same on the important issues where a tough vote would take place in the House or Senate. And all of the Republicans would have very few if any tough votes in common with a Bernie Sanders.

How could your choices possibly be Cruz, or maybe Clinton/Sanders, but never Mitt Romney? What sense is there in any of that? Did Romney steal your lunch money?

It matters not to me, if people like you dabble in Libertarian Party politics. If enough of you do it, we'll get more Democrats. If the Republican Party has done something you don't like, that too is fine with me and I'd encourage you to try to change it.

What I shall never find acceptable is people who say, "I'm supporting Trump; I'm not a Republican, I don't like the GOP establishment or the GOP leadership, and I don't much vote in Republican primaries..." and then whine about a Republican Party nomination, or nominating rules, or other such party/convention rules.

I certainly do want you to vote for Republican candidates up and down the ballot; I don't want you people to be turned away from voting Republican. But for people who are so very loosely connected to the Republican Party at all, I don't understand the fascination with the Party's nominee, and its nominating rules.

gadfly said...

"Trump has a lot of pride in his knowledge of how things work in the real world — how China is "killing us" in these trade deals, etc. etc. — other politicians are naive and he's the one man who can bring expertise in handling wily people who are trying to take advantage. But the real world of this delegate game has brought him up short. It must really hurt his pride, privately, and it hurts his image publicly."

(Proverbs 16:18)
How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver! The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: and whoso trusteth in the LORD, happy is he.

Translation: Narcissism will get you every time.

Michael K said...

" But for people who are so very loosely connected to the Republican Party at all, I don't understand the fascination with the Party's nominee, and its nominating rules."

The crossover voters are more concerned with the candidate and less with the party. The same was true with Reagan. I remember it well. Something like this by Spencer in 1980.

The Republican Party has made a lot of promises that it hasn't kept.

Chuck said...

This sort of talk (who is your "dream" candidate) usually occurs about 18 months prior to a general election. Not 219 days before election day.

I get a kick out of voters who make presidential (and other) choices based on their appraisals of the candidate(s) as a person. As if, through the miracle of 21st century media, we can all get to know the candidates and decide on who to pick as if it were The Dating Game.

Pick a party, people. And if you are still dissatisfied and you have sufficient political interest and energy, then get involved in the party, and change the platform. You can probably have a more tangible impact on your life (and learn more) by serving on your local planning and zoning board or going to county commission meetings, than by complaining on the internet about Donald Trump's views on waterboarding, or Bernie Sanders' views on currency valuation.

Big Mike said...

"Faithless delegates" and non-binding primaries are always an issue for the candidates.

I wonder whether 2016 will have echoes of 1860. With 233 votes needed to nominate, the first ballot had 173 for Seward, 102 for Lincoln, 50 for Cameron, 49 for Chase, 48 for Edward Bates, and handfuls here and there for others. But a number of delegations were part of what today we'd call "stop Seward" and were merely waiting to see who the strongest of the rest would be. On ballot #2 Seward picked up 11 votes while Lincoln had 182. Seward lost votes on ballot #3, while Lincoln moved up to 231 1/2. Then Ohio changed 4 votes from favorite son Salmon P. Chase to Lincoln and it was over.

So, will Trump have enough votes on the first ballot to win? Apparently Cruz will be second. Will Rubio and others endorse him and ask their delegates to vote for Cruz? If they merely release their delegates, how many will move to Trump? How many Trump delegates will flip to Cruz?

Interesting times.

Michael K said...

"you have sufficient political interest and energy, then get involved in the party,"

The Tea Party tried that and found every man's hand against them. Not just Obama's IRS. The GOPe dismissed them also.

gadfly said...

Blogger Michael K (and his autocorrect) said...
The Trump phenomenon is just part of the decline. Obama was the first magical president. Clinton I was a fluke of Bush I's fecklessness in ignoring his promise and his failure to finish Gulf Water I. Clinton ignored Osama while the GOP Congress produced a stock market bull run. The Housing Bubble began under Clinton as he expanded the CRA. The 9/11 attacks weakened the economy badly, much as the 1906 earthquake led to the Panic of 1907 and then to the Federal Reserve Bank.

Too much individual credit being thrown around with references to Obama the "magical president" and GHWB's "Gulf Water 1" and the Clinton 1's act of expanding the "CRA." Wish I new what the hell you are talking about.

So let me guess: The magical president must be Barry the "Magic Negro." Bush 41 must have to do with with what became known as the "Gulf War", the "Persian Gulf War" or "Operation Desert Shield," or maybe just "War is Hell". As for Bill Clinton, whose concentration was impaired by women, CRA doesnt mean the Canadian Revenue Agency (that according to Trump would be Ted Cruz's problem) so it might mean the Community Reinvestment Act or it might mean sworn testimony given by Bill - "Can't Remember Anything."

David said...

"I wonder whether 2016 will have echoes of 1860."

The one where Lincoln declared that he would make no deals and then got the nomination via a deal made on his behalf by his supporters? Yeah that's the one.

LIncoln had a bunch of pros on his team. Trump does not.

David said...

coupe said...
The whole primary and party convention system should be declared unconstitutional.


Great idea. Let the courts design our political system. It's just what the Framers had in mind.

Shannon said...

"The Tea Party tried that and found every man's hand against them. Not just Obama's IRS. The GOPe dismissed them also."

That's not how I saw the result--the establishment often bitterly opposed the Tea Party picks, but the Tea Party frequently won the nominations and when they weren't picking ridiculously weak general election candidates (Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell) they got a number of people elected (Mike Lee, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, arguably Rand Paul). Hell, they even have a Tea Party Caucus in the House.

Does this mean they control the party now? No, but they certainly have influence. Case in point--they got their shutdown in 2013 even though the establishment thought it was ill-advised.

Get more winnable candidates into primaries, and you'll be able to pick your party's leaders. It's preferable to light a fire than curse the darkness.

Michael K said...

"Wish I new what the hell you are talking about."

I do too.

You did seem to realize that the CRA was expanded by Clinton and was at the root of the real estate bubble. Clinton's HUD was pressing banks to lend to the poor as a policy matter. It didn't care if it was ever paid back. Real estate was supposed to grow to the sky.

I don't blame Clinton and the Democrats for the incredible foolishness of the financial world. That is in Nicole Gelinas' book.

As for Obama being magical, what were his qualifications for the office ? Any suggestions ?

I blogged about Obama's record on my own blog in 2008.

Do you know the story ?

Michael K said...

"Hell, they even have a Tea Party Caucus in the House."

Have you read about the GOPe's attitude toward the "Tea Party Caucus?"

How about this on Paul Ryan's plans?

Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan., head of the House Tea Party Caucus, called Ryan's conditions for becoming the next speaker "entirely unreasonable." Those conditions include a request that the House eliminate a rule that allows a member to seek a vote to oust the speaker. That provision is part of the original rules of the House, authored by Thomas Jefferson.

"No other speaker I know of would ever have as much power as Paul Ryan asked for himself," Huelskamp said following a meeting among Republican lawmakers. "Is he serious?"

Ryan outlined his conditions in the meeting but took no questions, Huelskamp said. Webster, who is now the only other official candidate for speaker, was not allowed time to address the conference.


"Does this mean they control the party now? No, but they certainly have influence"

How much influence would you say ?

Why do we not have 12 Appropriations bills debated and passed by the House ? We have had a majority there since 2010. The Senate has a GOP majority since 2012.

Shannon said...

"How much influence would you say ? Why do we not have 12 Appropriations bills debated and passed by the House ? We have had a majority there since 2010. The Senate has a GOP majority since 2012."

The Tea Party is still not a majority of the GOP caucus (though I suppose it depends on how you define the Tea Party--it's not really a formal organization, though there are candidates who affiliate themselves with groups using that name). They still have to contend with a lot of Republicans who are a lot more moderate, or have to depend on crossover votes in their districts. The system has always been, and always will be, that way. But better to have your fellow travelers in office to block what needs to be blocked at the very least.

Do you think they wouldn't have been worse off if the seats they currently occupy were instead occupied by more moderate Republicans?

Achilles said...

Chuck said...

"How could your choices possibly be Cruz, or maybe Clinton/Sanders, but never Mitt Romney? What sense is there in any of that? Did Romney steal your lunch money?"

Lets have a poll: What new entitlement do you think Mitt Romney will add to our government?

1. Free College tuition?

2. Free Prenatal care for all pregnant women?

3. Free work training programs for legal/illegal workers?

You know damn well Mitt Romney will have a larger federal budget every year. Romney will add new programs and new entitlements. He passed Obamacare before Obama made it cool. Tell me with a straight face Romney will do anything that will actually help this country. And no "growing the government a little slower than the Democrats" is not the right answer.

Achilles said...

A lot of people here telling other people to "just go get involved in the party."

Newsflash: 1. I don't want to have to go to work outside my other interests in order to tell other people what to do. The government should be a vanishingly small part of our lives. Everyone who "wants to get involved" with the party wants to solve problems with the government.

2. The people in those rooms at the lower level are decent people. The people at the national level should generally be burned at the stake. It shows. At the local level republicans are doing well. On the national level they keep foisting people like Bush, McCain and Romney who never saw a new entitlement they didn't like.

Michael K said...

"Do you think they wouldn't have been worse off if the seats they currently occupy were instead occupied by more moderate Republicans?"

Frankly ? I doubt it would be any different. Ryan is supposed to be the chair of Ways and Means, which is powerful but he hasn't done much of note.

After the election, Ryan returned to the House and pursued what was supposed to be a more pragmatic approach to policy, that moved Ryan closer to the center. He said that the presidential election reminded him that "[t]he Electoral College matters. That's what I learned." (National Journal) Ryan seemed to be increasingly concerned with creating a more geographically broad base for Republicans and his voting record tracked more to the middle. In December 2013, he helped broker a budget deal with liberal Senator Patty Murray that repealed one of the key conservative victories under President Obama’s reign — the sequester budget caps that helped keep spending in check. The Ryan-Murray budget increased fees, and claimed to reduce the deficit in the final years of the 10-year plan, making it unlikely that said reductions would ever be realized. (FreedomWorks) Simplified, Ryan-Murray was trading real spending cuts occurring at the time, for increased spending and spending cuts in future years, which are unlikely to materialize. -

Sorry that record does not inspire confidence,

Chuck said...

Achilles said...
Chuck said...

"How could your choices possibly be Cruz, or maybe Clinton/Sanders, but never Mitt Romney? What sense is there in any of that? Did Romney steal your lunch money?"

Lets have a poll: What new entitlement do you think Mitt Romney will add to our government?


I wonder what universe I am in, sometimes, when I compare a statement like that, to Trump's pledge -- alone among Republicans -- to not reform Social Security entitlements.

Michael K said...

Romney made a serious mistake by not disavowing Obamacare, He could easily have said that his Mass plan was an experiment that was not ready for national application. He could have said the legislature went far beyond his desires in passing an employer mandate, which the Democrats have still not had the courage to enforce as they know it would cause a revolt, especially among the unions.

He could have told Candy Crowley she was out of line and not part of the debate and asked her who gave her her talking points.

He did a lot of things to lose.

I would vote for him in a minute in 2012, and did. It's too late now.

Amanda said...

People identifying as Democrats up to 46%, Republicans 40%.

Donald Trump motivating Democrats in a huge way., but not how you may think. Poll.

Democrats are not crossing over to Trump, the opposite is happening.

coupe said...

David said......It's just what the Framers had in mind.

The framers didn't have non-citizens voting, or Chinese ownership of the Treasury debt.

Achilles said...

coupe said...
"David said......It's just what the Framers had in mind.

The framers didn't have non-citizens voting, or Chinese ownership of the Treasury debt."

Or Felons. Or people who don't pay taxes.

They didn't envision 70% of the federal budget taking money from one individual and giving it to another individual to buy votes either.

Birkel said...

Amanda:

After crushing the middle class and other kulaks, what are your plans for Democrat policy initiatives? I mean, I see what you have done in St. Louis, Cleveland, Detroit, Kansas City, NYC, San Fran, LA, Seattle, Atlanta, and D.C. and I just get so excited for what you progressives have in store for the rest of us.

Will we be treated to Swedish-level poverty or do you intend to deprive us of toilet paper, a la Venezuela, Cuba and the Soviet Union?

What will victory mean to you?

Achilles said...

Chuck said...
Achilles said...
Chuck said...

"I wonder what universe I am in, sometimes, when I compare a statement like that, to Trump's pledge -- alone among Republicans -- to not reform Social Security entitlements."

Who created the EPA?

What was the last thing the republicans successfully did with a sitting president and control of both houses?(They failed to push amnesty through)

Newt Gingrich was the one person almost personally responsible for the last balanced budget we have had. What did the GOPe do to him in 2012? What were you people calling his supporters?

What did the GOPe do for the Tea Party besides stand to the side and let Obama use the IRS on us? Oh yeah they called us wacko birds and racists.

Screw you guys. You are going the way of the wigs one way or another.

Thorley Winston said...


A final possibility is “faithless delegates,” where individual delegates simply decline to vote for Trump despite being bound to do so by party rules. It’s not clear whether this is allowed under Republican rules, but it’s also not clear what the enforcement mechanism would be.

It’s not an issue because under Rule 16(a)(2) “[t]he Secretary of the Convention shall faithfully announce and record each delegate’s vote in accordance with the delegate’s obligation under these rules, state law or state party rule. If any delegate bound by these rules, state party rule or state law to vote for a presidential candidate at the national convention demonstrates support under Rule 40 for any person other than the candidate to whom he or she is bound, such support shall not be recognized.”

So for example if I’m elected as a Donald Trump delegate from the State of Minnesota (we will be sending eight in our delegation) and I decide that I really want to vote for Ted Cruz on the first ballot, it won’t matter. The Convention Secretary automatically records my vote on the first ballot for Donald Trump because that is the candidate I was bound to. If it goes to a second ballot, I can vote my preference but if I’m elected as a delegate for a candidate that I am bound to, my vote automatically goes to that candidate on the first ballot.

This is really not news to anyone involved in Republican politics because we’ve been discussing this for the last four years since these rules were adopted. I’m not surprised that Nate Silver, who is a Democratic Party operative, isn’t that familiar with these rules but why anyone would use him as a source for the internal workings of the Republican party rather, you know, asking someone involved in Republican politics is kind of a mystery to me.

David Ragsdale said...

There is but one man in our movement who will smash the PC monolith, and that is Trump.

The alternative is 90% of the posters on this thread being arrested in 10 years on charges of "offensiveness".

Oh yes, SSM won't have any affect on you as a constitutional right.

Oh, well the Mercades & Netflick HQ's in Cobb County blackmailed the
GOP Governor to veto a bill that would only recognize
basic constitutional rights.

STFU! And right.

The problem w/ the "Conservative Movement" and Meade and by derivation
Althouse is that they think rear-guard Marquis of Queensbury rules
will somehow slow down the illiberal LEFT.

No it won't.

See Georgia.

& it's much faster these days. Less than a year
after SSM was suddenly a Constitutional Right!
a baker in Indiana by force of Apple-Cook can
be frog marched into prison.

Kim Davis can be slogged in jail.

Tell me Ann, did you think the Lt. Gov
of California for doing the exact same thing
in 2003 should be jailed?

Your shitty husband only cares
about tax cuts & PR preening.

Those of us who care about
true liberalism have well learned
that Trump and only Trump

Will smash the PC and illiberal
hold on our institutions.

You will hear us soon.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKAM_Hk4eZ0

The fire is coming, take watch,
David


Birkel said...

David Ragsdale:

Do you really think Cruz will continue with politics as usual? I just don't see it.

Please explain.

Bobby said...

Michael K,

"Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan., head of the House Tea Party Caucus, called Ryan's conditions for becoming the next speaker "entirely unreasonable." Those conditions include a request that the House eliminate a rule that allows a member to seek a vote to oust the speaker. That provision is part of the original rules of the House, authored by Thomas Jefferson."

I know you're just quoting the original article by Susan Ferrechio, but that last sentence just doesn't seem plausible to me. Jefferson never served in the House of Representatives. He did technically serve in the Senate while he was Vice President of the United States, from 1797 to 1801, but I doubt if the Senate was involved in authoring the "original rules of the House" and, in any case, certainly not 8 years down the road. I'm gonna do some research on this, but that seems like some rather poor fact-checking on Ferrechio and the Examiner's part.

Howard said...

No matter who wins, we will get politics as usual. Bill Hicks said it best about the progressive Clinton:

Any Questions?

Ken B said...

I am unconvinced this hurts his image. Did Judas hurt Christ's image? Trump's image is about courage and honesty and standing up to the insiders who are stealing the government. You really think stories about sneaky lying insiders plotting to steal the government again by derailing Trump, and only Trump, undercuts him?

Birkel said...

Howard:

I understand that as a Leftist your best hope is to discourage people and hope for apathy as you attempt to dismantle the middle class and create a servant class for your progressive goals.

Well played.

We Americans are more likely to revolt than roll over as Europeans have. Good luck.

Amanda said...

David Ragsdale takes himself and "The Movement" of Trump verrrrrry seriously. Oooooo the fire is coming..... LOL.

Howard said...

Birkel: Keep bitterly clinging to your chickenhawk dreams of revolution. When faced with a real revolution on the right, e.g. Trump, you run the other way away from working folks.

Birkel said...

Amanda:

After crushing the middle class and other kulaks, what are your plans for Democrat policy initiatives? I mean, I see what you have done in St. Louis, Cleveland, Detroit, Kansas City, NYC, San Fran, LA, Seattle, Atlanta, and D.C. and I just get so excited for what you progressives have in store for the rest of us.

Will we be treated to Swedish-level poverty or do you intend to deprive us of toilet paper, a la Venezuela, Cuba and the Soviet Union?

What will victory mean to you?

Birkel said...

Howard:

You said not a single useful word. Second attempt?

Amanda said...

No toilet paper for you Birkel.

Brando said...

Well, someone called someone else racist eso the rest of us have to endure a ridiculously unqualified piece of garbage for president. Not sure how we deserved this but I guess the country went off the rails.

Trump-yes, that makes sense if the question is how can we burn everything down and descent into complete idiocy. The man is as close to a pure joke as we can get. But I guess the Republicans have decided this is a good year to hand it to the Dems because if you don't think this is where it's going I have a bridge to sell you, get on board.

Birkel said...

Funny, Amanda. I assume you will give me the 7.62 I deserve as an unrepentant kulak.

Eat the seed corn and beg the farmers, my socialist enemy.

Bruce Hayden said...

Every time I read something like this, I think, there goes the GOPe trying to steal the nomination back from the anti-establishment. Notably, maybe 75% of the delegates going into the convention (and, by then, maybe that much of the vote) are very likely going to be pledged to an anti-establishment candidate (Trump or Cruz), and the GOPe is still trying to sneak their guy into the nomination. No, JEB, Romney, Rubio, Ryan, etc. are not going to be the nominee, or, if the GOPe manages to get them nominated, the party will fall apart.

The dislike for the GOPe has grown and grown, since at least when the Tea Party started gaining successes in 2010. Maybe there were good strategic reasons to cave on the budget this last year, but with both the House and the Senate (at least until this coming November), this was a good chance for the Republicans to take some stands. They didn't, caving to the Democrats, even when they controlled both Houses of Congress. Why bother voting Republican, when the Republicans we elect go back to DC and vote the way that the monied interests tell them to? It has been a running war for at least the last 4-6 years against comprehensive immigration "reform", which the GOPe wants, and the rank and file mostly despises. Why are they interested in passing legislation that is so greatly hated by the Republican rank and file? One part of it is that the big tech companies are dumping large amounts of money into getting expanded H1B visas (and the GOPe is getting their major cut of this). But, the other part is that large complex bills like that are Christmas trees, with huge amounts of money and giveways tucked in, in order to buy the votes necessary for passage. It is all about money and power, and the GOPe wants their share. There is something rotten in DC, and they are a big part of it.

Hillary is, of course, despised by most Republicans, and by a lot of potential Republican recruits. The GOPe is depending on that to buoy their candidate into the White House, believing that many of their dissatisfied party members are going to vote for such, just to keep her from returning to the White House. But, they ignore, at their peril, the fact that they have become increasingly disliked by much of the rank and file. Hillary is most likely not going to get many Republican votes, if the GOPe has their way, and they sneak their guy into the nomination, but that doesn't mean that they will go to the polls, because many of them won't. Which, likely also means that they lose the Senate, and put the House in jeopardy.

Finally, why are Trump and Cruz really the only candidates standing? Partly, because so many believe that they are the only ones who could and would take the fight to Hillary. She is formidable, not because of any innate ability as a politician, but because of all the weapons at her disposal. She has been able to pump millions into state Dem parties (which is why the Superdelegates are very likely to stick with her, regardless of how well Sanders does for the rest of the primary campaign). She has the MSM behind her, and will likely bury the Republicans in fund raising. Why? Because the Dems control a large majority of the big contributors (for every Koch brother, there are maybe a dozen on the Dem side), and she is willing to cheat (as Obama did so successfully) to win. She also has the unionized government employee unions and their money behind her. Moreover, the radical left is poised (and well funded by Soros and his ilk) to disrupt Republican campaigns (as we are already seeing with their attacks on Trump). Besides she is a woman and a (pretend) feminist, who is going to try to Rick Lazio any potential Republican nominee. Trump has shown that he can be effective against that, and I don't see Cruz backing down either. But the others? They will likely fight the election on her terms, and, as a result, lose. (And, yes, many of us see this as one of the big failures of the Romney, and maybe even McCain, campaigns).

JAORE said...

Nuclear option?

More like the hand grenade in the phone booth option.

And yeah, in a real total meltdown of society "precious metals" are a loser. If you can't eat it, build with it or defend yourself with it, don't bring it. (Simplistic, of course....).


Precious metals are for when there is a semblance of society with trade outside of the "three hens for 4 bullets" range.

And, no, I'm not a prepper. I'm fairly old and don't think it will ALL go to hell. I have reasonable means of surviving the lesser scenarios.

Yancey Ward said...

It is very clear that he will have to win on the first or second ballot. The one card he has to play if he can't win on the first ballot is this- Cruz won't be allowed win either the first or second ballot by the same "establishment". I think Cruz probably knows this, too. There is a deal to be made between those two before the convention.

Bruce Hayden said...

An article in the WaPo by Chris Cillizza saying essentially what I said above: An argument against the magical realism of the #neverTrump crowd