September 27, 2017

"The stunning defeat of President Trump’s chosen Senate candidate in Alabama on Tuesday amounted to a political lightning strike..."

"... setting the stage for a worsening Republican civil war that could have profound effects on next year’s midterm elections and undermine Trump’s clout with his core voters," writes Robert Costa in The Washington Post.
The GOP primary victory by conservative firebrand Roy Moore over Sen. Luther Strange could also produce a stampede of Republican retirements in the coming months and an energized swarm of challengers. It marked yet another humiliation for the Washington-based Republican establishment, particularly Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), whose allies pumped millions of dollars into the race to prop up Strange and reassure his colleagues that they could survive the Trump era.

Moore’s win, however, also demonstrates the real political limitations of Trump, who endorsed “Big Luther” at McConnell’s urging and staged a rally for Strange in Huntsville, Ala., just days before the primary. The outcome is likely to further fray Trump’s ties to Republicans in Congress, many of whom now fear that even his endorsement cannot protect them from voter fury.
What if this thing that seems to be Trump is bigger than Trump — a wave he figured out how to ride for a little while, but from which he can fall and which will roll on without him? Or is the whole thing — whatever it is (anti-establishment fury?) — already played out? We can't have an endless string of characters like Trump and, now, Moore...
On the eve of the election, Moore, wearing a white cowboy hat and a black leather vest, pulled a handgun out of his pocket and flashed it at a rally....
... can we?
“It’s almost as if there is a compulsion in the party to nominate the most ‘out there’ candidate just to show you can, with no concern about what that means for the rest of the party,” [Charlie] Sykes said. “Republicans — and that means Trump, too — have unleashed something they can’t control.”
How many "out there" candidates can there be? How wild can you be before people won't trust you? It's hard to know in post-2016 America. We've got a taste for the bizarre and we don't trust the appearance of normality anymore.
With Corker retiring, seven Senate Republicans are expected to run for reelection next year: Wicker, Heller, Jeff Flake (Ariz.), Ted Cruz (Texas), Deb Fischer (Neb.), Orrin G. Hatch (Utah) and John Barrasso (Wyo.).

For months, only three of them — Flake, Heller and Wicker — were widely seen as vulnerable to primary upsets. But in the wake of Alabama, GOP operatives are no longer ruling out an expanded map of targets for Bannon and his associates, such as former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who stormed behind Moore’s candidacy to reassert her influence within the party.
The revenge of Sarah Palin. She really started it all, didn't she?
“What we’ve noticed is that Trump voters aren’t necessarily looking for Trump, they’re looking for candidates who are outsiders like Trump and will lean toward people with that sort of background,” said Robert Cahaly, a Republican pollster whose firm surveyed the Alabama race. “Strange seems establishment, he’s not seen as disruptive at all, so he was at a disadvantage.”
In that sense, Moore was the Trump candidate. 
“The president went into Alabama because of loyalty and political necessity,” said Christopher Ruddy, the chief executive of Newsmax Media and Trump’s friend. “When he’s faced with this kind of situation in the future, he’ll support his friends but the question is how far he goes. He may be a little careful.”

One of Trump’s first choices will be how much to get behind Moore, who GOP leaders fear could be a burden to Republican candidates nationally. At Trump’s Huntsville rally Friday — when he conceded he “might have made a mistake” in backing the incumbent — Trump vowed to “be here campaigning like hell” for Moore if he won, while acknowledging his limitations.
Trump had already hedged his bet, and of course, Trump immediately readjusted to align with Moore and make Moore just another success for Trump:

235 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 235 of 235
tim in vermont said...

18 U.S.C. § 2071(b) (“Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States.”

Good think nobody investigate the crime that Huma Abedin admitted to under oath. Comey was completely incurious on the matter, because the Clintons, as has been noted above, get a different treatment under the law than the rest of us.

But that's no reason to detest her! It must be something else!!!

tim in vermont said...

BTW, the WaPo had an article explaining to us that in their opinion "any office" did not apply to the presidency because reasons. Though if it were Trump who had done this, he would already be gone.

Kirk Parker said...

Sebastian @ 12:44pm,

One of these is not like the others.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

After his removal as SC Chief Justice over the Ten Commandments issue, Moore was reelected as Chief Justice in 2012.

No, he was not "reelected" as Chief Justice in 2012. He was removed from office in 2003. He then ran for Congress and was soundly defeated by Jo Bonner in the primaries.

In 2012 - nine years after being removed from the court - he was elected to the Court.

You cannot connect his election in 2012 to his previous term in 2003.

Unknown said...

Chuck threatens with the idea that liberals will control Congress if we keep voting not for people like Moore. Ok so what exactly would change from McConnels Congress now? We haven’t cut spending or repealed Obamacare or defunded NPR or Planned parenthetical or. Zero difference between what we have now a a Pelosi/Schumer Congress with Trumps veto pen

McCain sure proves the value of a Republican Congress doesn’t he?

—Vance

Jim at said...

"Just in my worthless opinion there's a hubris stalking this movement and there's going to be hell to pay for it. "

Snort. A leftist calling out others on hubris. That's rich.

Sebastian said...

"Sebastian @ 12:44pm,

One of these is not like the others."

I know what you are referring to -- but: "rule of law" it ain't.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Chuck threatens with the idea that liberals will control Congress if we keep voting not for people like Moore.

Seriously? How will we be able to tell the difference. The Republican Congress is worthless as it is. Might as well burn down the place (not literally for those who don't understand figures of speech and sarcasm). Elect a lot more Moores.

Chuck said...

FullMoon said...
...

You voted for Trump. No matter your excuse, you are a Nazi, KuKluxKlanner, racist, misogynist, sexist,old, white and privileged as well as a no good titty twister deplorable.

Oh, some liberal Dem could say that about me, but I'd have no problem defending myself. I've never subscribed to any of the loony racially-tinged things that Donald Trump has done or said.

I did vote for the Republican ticket in Michigan. So no one can say that I sided with Dems.

But absolutely nothing that I have done or said would expose me to the sorts of arguments that Trump loyalists have to answer for.

Chuck said...

Dust Bunny Queen said...
Chuck threatens with the idea that liberals will control Congress if we keep voting not for people like Moore.

Seriously? How will we be able to tell the difference. The Republican Congress is worthless as it is. Might as well burn down the place (not literally for those who don't understand figures of speech and sarcasm). Elect a lot more Moores.

You are not going to "elect a lot more Moores." I know that because they tried to elect some more "Moores" in Nevada, Missouri and Connecticut and it failed spectacularly. They ran "Moores" in primary challenges against Paul Ryan, John McCain and Marco Rubio and they lost.

Big Mike said...

@Meade, thanks.

Big Mike said...

@Titus, if you don't want to be hated, please consider not being such an intolerant, hate-filled schmuck yourself.

Birkel said...

And with a record of prognostication like Chuck, who can argue? After all, Trump could not win Michigan.

How is Eric Cantor these days? How many dollars did Moore spend compared to Strange?

Michael K said...

There will be plenty of primary challenges next year. There might even be some good ones.

The Tea Party candidates a few years ago that Chuck crows over, were from a movement that was under attack by Obama and which had not had time to get organized.

We'll see what happens.

southcentralpa said...

My take is that Trump backing Strange was his way of saying to McConnell, "Okay, we'll try it your way." Now, he comes back to McConnell, "Are you ready to try it MY way ... ?"

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Running a bunch of Palins/Akins/O'Donnells/Angles/Moores in swing districts and swing states across the nation will hand Congress back to the Dems.

Maybe.

Running Donald J "You Can Grab 'em By The Pussy Trump" against Hillary Herself will give the Presidency & guaranteed Supreme Court nomination(s) to the Dems.

Maybe not.

Birkel said...

Michael K,

The IRS won't be sabotaging conservative organizations this time, we hope. So there is that.

Jeff Weimer said...

The people - at least the GOP primary electorate in Alabama - are rendering the wages of Milton Friedman's maxim: make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing.

If you don't do the right thing, you will be replaced. Pour Encourager Les Autres.

https://youtu.be/MEVI3bmN8TI

Sacto_Dave said...

"What if this thing that seems to be Trump is bigger than Trump"

I think what we're seeing is the continuation of the Tea Party movement. The GOPe tried to kill us off but we're still here and we're more pissed than ever. And we're seething over being called racist when all we ever wanted was smaller government and responsible budgeting. The only thing to do is to keep throwing the bums out until we get a government that responds to our demands. Isn't that how it was designed to work?

Chuck said...

Trump won Michigan's 16 electoral votes with 47.3% of the vote to Hillary Clinton's 47%. About 11,000 votes, out of about 5 million votes.

That margin of victory was dwarfed by Jill Stein's (Green Party) vote of 52,000 (1.1%).

For reference, Darrell Castle of the US Taxpayers party got 16,000 votes in our state; more than Trump's margin of victory in Michigan.

By the way, that Green Party vote, across Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Iowa was enough to kill the Hillary election bid.

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/308353-trump-won-by-smaller-margin-than-stein-votes-in-all-three

That should be a lesson to Republicans. The nutball wing of your side can sometimes mortally wound your mainstream candidates.

We Republicans ought to be reveling in the Democrats' misery. Jill Stein and Bernie Sanders, costing Hillary what should have been an easy win. But they don't really have an anti-Democrat media wing. Not like the rear-guard actions that Republicans have to fight versus Limbaugh and Hannity & co.

Birkel said...

So called Chuck, fopdoodle extraordinaire... and that means you were correct and Trump didn't win?

Because otherwise none of what you wrote matters.

veni vidi vici said...

Think about it this way:

Trump backed Strange on McConnell's advice. He made all the right noises and moves doing it, too, even bringing the VP with him for the big session last Friday night.

The likelihood that (a) Trump didn't know who Moore is in the anti-establishment GOP movement, (b) Trump didn't have an idea that his natural sympathies would likely lie with Moore, especially given Bannon & Co.'s jumping on board with Moore, is likely zero.

End result? McConnell now owes Trump bigly, for having him spend political capital on a loser. Embarrassing!

So for all practical purposes, it's not difficult to see this as a win for Trump after all. The media flies on the elephantine ass of trivia passing for news in this country are a non-factor, so their prognostication that this is a sign of Trump's weakness isn't going to have currency.

And, like clockwork, the cool, mellow, professional Trump is back in confidence-inspiring blue tie selling the tax plan. Bigtime contrast with the rambling "Christmas tie" Trump of last weekend's 'Bammie blowout.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Regarding Ryan, McCain, Rubio - broadly, the power of incumbency. McCain is headed to his reward. Rubio, apparently there was no one better to run, I wouldn't know. Ryan is in a very powerful position but I don't think that he shares your confidence.


Running a bunch of Palins/Akins/O'Donnells/Angles/Moores in swing districts and swing states across the nation will hand Congress back to the Dems.

Then "your wing" ought to hear the voice of the people and give them what they want. When I say give them what they want, I mean really give them what they want, not pretend in order to steal their votes. You can still sit in the Big Boy chairs and drive the car, as long as you drive where the people tell you to go. It's really hard for you to accept that, I perceive. It'll be harder when you lose.

Bad Lieutenant said...

But absolutely nothing that I have done or said would expose me to the sorts of arguments that Trump loyalists have to answer for.

So, you think that a black-clad anarchist would not hit you in the head with a bike lock for that reason?


DBQ:... The Republican Congress is worthless as it is. Might as well burn down the place (not literally for those who don't understand figures of speech and sarcasm). Elect a lot more Moores.

Chuck: You are not going to "elect a lot more Moores." I know that because they tried to elect some more "Moores" in Nevada, Missouri and Connecticut and it failed spectacularly.

The party should have backed them. How much did McConnell pump into Strange's campaign? 9 million dollars, for a primary? In part these candidates failed because the GOPe preferred them to fail, to provide just the sort of lesson you wish to impart to us here. Kind of like the Soviets sitting outside of Warsaw until the Germans had put down the Polish uprising. Classy.

Bad Lieutenant said...


By the way, that Green Party vote, across Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Iowa was enough to kill the Hillary election bid

Between Johnson, Castle, Egg McMuffin, and whatever other nimrods I am forgetting, I bet that didn't do Trump any good either. If your aunt had balls she'd be your uncle. I don't think you expected Trump to lose by 5000 or 50,000 in Michigan, I think you expected him to get pasted.

Bad Lieutenant said...

And yes, you should be reveling in the Democrats misery. Best way to do that is to unite solidly behind the President and pursue a common agenda, led by him.

Bad Lieutenant said...

As for off message media as you would have it, that just means that the right is more honest and less brainwashed in lockstep groupthink than the Democrats. Many presidents joke about how it would be easier if they could be dictators and have absolute power. We tend to hope they don't really mean it.

HT said...

"For all practical purposes, it's not difficult to see this as a win for Trump "

It is, completely. He went down to Alabama, poked at some people, got them riled up and they went to the polls and did the time-honored dance that native loons, demagogues, Northern racists, and race-exploiters prod them into from time to time. Political point for Trump. Tacky, but he won it. And he suckered Luther Strange into looking foolish. Something the Roy Cohn protege always loves and excels at.

Son of a bitch, black bastard - whatever, same be. Message received.

Please - don't even. Friends, family. They heard it. They cheered. They return demonstrated.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Son of a bitch, black bastard - whatever, same be. Message received.

How stupid. When I saw that punk Rapone in the West Point graduation pictures with the communist garb and sign, I wanted to tear out his throat. Looks white to me. Your presumption that only blacks who hate this country are resented is false.

Keith Schmitz said...

Someone said that Sarah Palin started this wave.

Yeah a wave that the working and middle class will surf -- right into a brick.

Please, explain how this movement those outside of the 1% one iota.

Your suggestions welcomed.

Wayne Martin said...

Trump gets to say to McConnell, 'I backed your candidate like you asked and he lost. YOU lost like you did on Obamacare. Now let's do it my way'.

Kirk Parker said...

Sebastian,

The people of WA and CO (bless their benighted souls) voted* to legalize recreational consumption of marijuana. WTF do you mean by saying "rule of law it ain't?")

--------------------------------------------------------------------
*I should point out that I am NOT a fan of the initiative process, given that I think one of our civic problems is that we already have Way Too Much Law™. I'd abolish the initiative in a heartbeat, while keeping the referendum (the latter basically says to the legislature: No You Don't Get To Make A Law About That.)

Birkel said...

Kirk Parker,
The Supremacy Clause is a thing. Coloradans and Californians are breaking federal drug laws.

HT said...

Your presumption that only blacks who hate this country are resented is false.

How did you infer that that is what I presume?

Kirk Parker said...

Birkel,

Indeed they are, but so what?

(1) The state laws that legalized consumption were passed in complete and total compliance to the laws in those states for the legislative process.

(2) The federal laws against marijuana consumption are flagrantly unconstitutional. (Proof? Our more-politically-honest forebears realized that the Constitution did not authorize the federal government to control intrastate production and sale of alcoholic beverages, so thay passed a whole fucking amendment to give the feds that power. Where is the comparable amendment related to marijuana?

«Oldest ‹Older   201 – 235 of 235   Newer› Newest»