July 30, 2015

Thursday Open Tread (Trump Breastfeeding Edition)

Open threads can be used for discussing any topic you choose (no such thing as off-topic). Please try to keep off-topic comments here rather than on other threads.

Conversation starter: This will not play well with female voters.

Presidential candidate Donald Trump called a lawyer and breastfeeding mother “disgusting” after she requested a break from a deposition in order to pump, according to a New York Times report on Tuesday.

According to the paper, lawyer Elizabeth Beck was questioning Trump in 2011 about a failed Florida real estate project. Beck, with her husband, represented clients who claimed to lose thousands of dollars in the deal. At one point, Beck, who had a 3-month-old daughter, requested a medical break which was contested by Trump and his lawyers, who wanted to continue, the Times says. That’s when Beck took out her breast pump to show that her request was urgent — she needed to pump for her infant. “You’re disgusting,” Trump told Beck before leaving the room.

The quote is not disputed by Trump’s camp.

  7:00 am
Donald Trump  

July 29, 2015

Trump: I’d Love to Have Sarah Palin in My Administration

Well, this is either amazing or horrendous news, depending on your point of view:

If Donald Trump takes the White House, Sarah Palin might have an invitation to join his team.

The real estate mogul went on “The Palin Update” Monday — a radio show airing on Mama Grizzly Radio, a station that offers 24-hour news about Palin and issues related to her — telling host Kevin Scholla that he would consider having the former Alaska governor in an official capacity in a Trump administration.

“I’d love that,” said Trump. “Because she really is somebody who knows what’s happening and she’s a special person.”

It’s always difficult to analyze Trump’s campaign, because he doesn’t appear to have any sort of coherent strategy outside of “talk the loudest and stay in the headlines.” Thus, I’m not sure how much we can read into his comments here — has he actually considered Palin for a cabinet position? Did he just say this because he was on a radio show on a network that loves Sarah Palin and it was an off the cuff pander? Or is he strategically attempting to deepen his roots in the “angry anti-everything” wing of the party?

It does present an interesting topic, however. If you were President and were forced/got to add Sarah Palin to your cabinet, what would you appoint her as?

  10:15 am
Donald Trump, Sarah Palin  


1.  Jeb Bush  former Governor of Florida

Gov. Bush returns as the default frontrunner, in part due to his historic fundraising strength, but more so due to the effects of the “Summer of Trump”. With the left-wing billionaire dominating media coverage of the race, lesser known candidates have been deprived of much needed air time. Bush, with his dynastic name, is somewhat immune to this effect, leaving him relatively unscathed in national polls. However, Trump does pose a bigger threat to Bush than other candidates running, mostly due to the unpredictable, anti-establishment history of the New Hampshire electorate. Unlike Scott Walker, Bush has been unable to maintain his early state lead, falling far behind Trump in the first primary state. The longer Bush stays behind a buffoon like Trump, the weaker he looks and the less likely a third Bush presidency becomes.

2. Scott Walker  Governor of Wisconsin

Walker has finally entered the race and immediately added to his commanding lead in Iowa. Walker’s early state strength is more impressive when you consider other candidates have seen their numbers crumble in the wake of the Trump media frenzy. Walker’s aligned super PACs have over $20 million in the bank, more than enough to build on and sustain his Iowa lead. However, Walker has become the new favorite target of the left-wing billionaire, and he must be careful how far into the weeds he wants to go in responding to the erratic and unelectable Clinton donor.

3. Marco Rubio  U.S. Senator from Florida

Sen. Rubio has seen some of his poll numbers fall as the Florida republican has receded from media attention, focusing more on fundraising and organization during the summer. His efforts have paid some off some, as his campaign raised the most money of any candidate, and his super PACs brought in the third most. Rubio has also avoided some of the more embarrassing elements of this summer’s campaign, namely getting dragged too deep in the muck by realty TV show character Donald Trump. Rubio has managed to retain his stunningly high favorability ratings, making him the most liked candidate in the field, something that bolsters his electability argument against the more unfavorable Jeb Bush and the rapidly declining Hillary Clinton.

4.  John Kasich  Governor of Ohio

Kasich’s late start hasn’t stopped him from making big inroads in New Hampshire, a state his campaign has focused heavily on. With a team that knows New Hampshire well, a local boost from the Sununu family, and solid PAC fundraising, Kasich may still become a top challenger to Bush on the establishment side. Now that it looks like he’ll make the debates, his momentum may continue to build. With the bursting of the Trump bubble looming, attention will turn to candidates who are not insane or a blight on party, and Kasich will be a top choice when that occurs.

5.  Ted Cruz  U.S. Senator from Texas

With the “bomb-throwing loudmouth” slot being filled by Trump, Cruz finds himself largely without his natural niche. He lame attacks on Sen. Mitch McConnell won’t win him back his status as Cruz is the only candidate in the field who hasn’t stood up to Trump’s more outlandish statements, leaving the Texas senator open to criticism for weakness and gutlessness. However, Cruz’s fundraising has put him in a position to capitalize on the collapse of other candidates in the far-right bracket of the primary process, making him the most likely of the fringe candidates to survive a longer campaign.

6. Chris Christie  Governor of New Jersey

Christie’s comeback has been very slow, but a few polls released since his announcement have him doing slightly better than expected. His unfavorables still need major work, and his New Hampshire-or-bust campaign needs strengthening, but he’s done enough to make the debates, where his talents can be most effective.

7. Rand Paul  U.S. Senator from Kentucky

Paul’s numbers continue to slide, a fact that was made more alarming but his horrible fundraising quarter, both by his campaign and aligned PACs. Paul’s “libertarian moment” seems to have passed him by. With so many candidates soaking up the media spotlight, Paul was supposed to have the money and an organization to give him an edge in the early states. It just hasn’t materialized.

8. Rick Perry  former Governor of Texas

Gov. Perry has been the strongest voice for conservatism in the face of the media-created Trump bubble, taking the liberal billionaire to task for a number of his leftist positions and idiotic statements. Perry, one of only two veterans running for the nomination, has earned a true second look for his courage in the face of media hysteria.

9.  Donald Trump  Chairman and President of The Trump Organization 

It is with great embarrassment and tremendous shame in my party that I have to include this buffoon in these rankings. Unfortunately, Trump’s numbers cannot be ignored. However, polls alone are not the decisive factor in primary elections, with money and organization at this early stage carrying greater weight. Trump has yet to put serious money into his campaign the way Ross Perot did, and his lack of a real ground game will show over time. The fact that the Koch brothers have cut him off to their database and research puts him in greater need of his own “yuuuge” financial resources.

10.  Mike Huckabee  former Governor of Arkansas

Gov. Huckabee followed his disturbing defense of Josh Duggar last month with an outlandish attack on the President this month, comparing him to the SS officers who committed mass genocide against the Jews during World War II. This pattern of nonsensical rhetoric was coupled with a disastrous fundraising quarter for the TV host-turned-also ran. On top of it all, Huckabee’s numbers in Iowa are tanking, leaving his chances of being the nominee on life support.

Honorable Mention:  Carly Fiorina, Bobby Jindal,  Ben Carson

No Chance: Lindsey Graham, George Pataki, Rick Santorum, Jim Gilmore

July 23, 2015

Trump Threatens to Go Third Party

Well that didn’t take long – only a few days after promising to only run as a Republican, Trump threatens to bolt if the RNC isn’t “fair” to him. Here’s more from the Hill

Donald Trump says the chances that he will launch a third-party White House run will “absolutely” increase if the Republican National Committee is unfair to him during the 2016 primary season.

“The RNC has not been supportive. They were always supportive when I was a contributor. I was their fair-haired boy,” the business mogul told The Hill in a 40-minute interview from his Manhattan office at Trump Tower on Wednesday. “The RNC has been, I think, very foolish.”

Pressed on whether he would run as a third-party candidate if he fails to clinch the GOP nomination, Trump said that “so many people want me to, if I don’t win.”
“I’ll have to see how I’m being treated by the Republicans,” Trump said. “Absolutely, if they’re not fair, that would be a factor.”


-Matthew Newman is an engineer and blogger who also writes at Old Line Elephant and Red Maryland. Follow Newman on Twitter @mdmrn.

  7:41 am
2016, Donald Trump  

July 22, 2015

The Kardashian of the Republican Primary

There is an intrinsic dynamic to media driven campaigns, and make no mistake:  the Trump phenomenon is about as media driven as it’s possible to get.  It causes a massive surge, but what goes up usually comes back down.

Rand was asked by Hannity why Trump zoomed in the polls while he couldn’t seem to make a breakthrough. Paul said that Trump had received “a billion dollars of free publicity” from the media. He said that if HE had received that he would have made a breakthrough.

David Yepsen, of the Des Moines Register, said “He is taking all the oxygen out of the room…there is nobody able to punch through right now with messages about the economy, or foreign policy, or Hillary….It’s all Trump, all the time.”

On one day shortly after announcing, CNN mentioned Trump’s name 239 times. GOP strategist Matt McKowiac: “When Donald Trump is on a stage on his own, it has a circus quality to it, or a reality show.” In tune with that, Ron Bonjean, a former aide to Republican leaders in Washington has called Trump “the Kardashian of the Republican Primary.”

After Lindsey Graham referred to Trump with a swear word, Trump read out Graham’s cell phone number on live television and called him, for good measure, “a stiff” and an “idiot.” And after Trump said that former Texas Governor Rick Perry should take an IQ test before he’s allowed to run for President, he said Perry started to wear glasses “to look smarter.”

In an article by Carl Cannon, “Why didn’t Trump run as a Democrat?”, Rick Perry is quoted as saying “What Mr. Trump is offering is not Conservatism, it is Trumpism.”

Cannon notes that Trump calls successful men “losers,” routinely describes men more knowledgeable than himself “stupid” and even cites an observation by Maria Konnikova, a Ph.D. in psychology from Colombia University in 2011, postulating that Trump may suffer from narcissistic personality disorder.

One outcome of his candidacy might be, as Bonjean believes, that people will get desensitized to him over time… that they will “realize he’s just being ridiculous to be ridiculous.”

The counter attack is in full swing.  Already, many who jumped on the bandwagon have run for cover.  Bill Crystal, early on captivated by the idea of a Donald candidacy, on a Sunday talk show said “Trump is dead to me.”  This, after his remarks about John McCain.  In the Quinnipiac polls of Virginia, Colorado, and Iowa it was shown that among the public at large Trump’s disapproval is almost twice as high as his approval.  Opinions are forming fast…

What do you all think?

  8:32 pm
Donald Trump  

Trump Rules Out Third Party Run, Says “I Will Only Ever Run as a Republican”

Donald Trump called into Dana Loesch’s show on The Blaze last night for an interview with the conservative talk show host which touched on topics ranging from Planned Parenthood to the VA. Trump more or less gave predictable answers to all the questions — except for one.

When Dana Loesch asked Donald Trump about the possibility of running third party, The Donald categorically ruled it out, saying:

“I will only ever run as a Republican.”

This statement is (as Trump would say) yoooge — it is the first time he has ruled out a third party run, and his response flies in the face of conventional wisdom. Many armchair politicos, myself included, assumed that everything in Trump’s disastrous candidacy to this point was a setup for him to run on a third party ticket. If Trump keeps his word now, it appears the GOP can breathe a sigh of relief. Of course, that’s a big if, considering the fact Trump has changed his position on, oh, pretty much everything in the past. For now, though, the GOP’s task is twofold: first, manage Trump’s inevitable deflation (or crash) well enough to where he doesn’t change his mind about running third party; and secondly, to mitigate the damage done by Trump in the meantime.

  11:28 am
Donald Trump, Republican Party, Third Parties  

July 21, 2015

[Guest Post]: Why I Got Onboard the Make America Great Again Express

The following is a guest opinion piece by reader and commenter Gordon, who is graciously offering us a glimpse into the mind of a Donald Trump supporter. It was originally written on July 13. As with any opinion piece here on Race, the following does not necessarily represent the views of the editor or the other authors on the site; we present it in the interest of dialog and furthering the conversation.

Many of the reasons that try to explain why people are supporting Trump, throughout both the Race42016 community and elsewhere in the political world, cover my personal thoughts and emotions that have been growing steadily over the last decade. These thoughts and emotions reached the boiling point with the flare up over the confederate flag. I can’t stand how dysfunctional not only our government has become, but our society as a whole. I saw a post on Facebook that pretty much summed up how I feel: there’s a guy waking up in his bed and the blurb above him says, “Good Morning America…What am I supposed to be offended about today?”

I am the opposite of a low information voter. I have always tried to view presidential elections with serious thought and attention and have never been more than mildly attracted to vanity candidates. While Ted Cruz may exemplify my internal conservatism, I don’t think he has a prayer of selling that conservatism to the country in a general election. As I’ve stated here many times, I personally don’t think issues win elections, so I don’t have a problem supporting candidates that may not be as pure if I think they can become a truly great president. I’m pragmatic in both my expectations of candidates and my demands on their purity. I’ve never needed candidates to be perfect on the issues, and I don’t feel betrayed if someone needs to alter a view or de-emphasize any particular issue throughout the course of the campaign or their governance afterward. I understand reality will never reflect my ideology… it will never fully reflect any true ideology. Reality is a unique blend of all thoughts and beliefs and tilts both left and right… although the balance may be completely undone at this point until we hit rock bottom.

I love leaders! I love good men. I love character. I love to win. I was sold on Romney for these reasons. Here was a man with amazing personal character, an unbelievable record of accomplishments, and most importantly, was a tremendously successful leader throughout every facet of his extremely impressive life. Did America value Romney and his potential? Some of us did… but most just saw a rich stiff who shipped jobs to China, a man who could care less about the poor, a flip-flopper, a man that dismissed half of America as victims, and a ridiculously bad candidate – he was even labeled as an accomplice to murder. The game of our great political system played out on the pages of the media took a good man, a potentially great President, and chewed him up and spit him out.

Now, I didn’t expect Romney to be above the game and not be subjected to those predictable attacks and distortions. I understand how the game works, and Romney did as well. But America rejected a true gentleman and a natural born leader. Instead, they embraced a record of unsustainable debt increases, a problematic healthcare takeover and a man who showed his leadership style by meeting with the minority party leadership a whopping 2-3 times his entire first term. Why? Because Obama was packaged and sold to us as being cool/current – the exact opposite of the demon stiff they had carefully sold Romney as. Romney was going to take away birth control, increase taxes for the middle class while lowering it for his buddies, and single handedly take down the gay marriage movement – and lest we forget, he would kill countless of people with his off-shoring business model.

Enter The Donald! Now, my opinion on Donald Trump hasn’t magically changed in the last several weeks. I always believed The Donald was an obvious blowhard with an ego the size of Everest, and nothing has changed that perception. Donald Trump is a mess in so many ways, and yet The Donald is an icon. Not a beloved icon, but the man has built himself an empire that covers a wide array of pursuits. Everyone has heard of Donald Trump. He’s expanded his empire over the years in business, real estate, retail, and increasingly over the last decade, entertainment. It seems like he’s particularly embraced the entertainment aspect of his brand, and he’s good at it.


  6:00 pm
Donald Trump, Opinion  

The Trump Insult Generator

MarqueG posted this in the comments of another thread, but I think we can all have some fun with it here.

Perhaps no presidential candidate in history has wielded the put-down quite like Donald Trump. John McCain’s a “dummy.” John Kasich is “desperate.” Rick Perry “needs new glasses.” Karl Rove is “a total loser.” Lindsey Graham, Trump said Tuesday as he announced the South Carolina Senator’s cell phone number on live television, is a “stiff. What a stiff.” […]

Feeling left out that Trump hasn’t gotten around to insulting you or your friends? Here’s an app for that.

Naturally I gave it a try.


Wow! Good programming. Apparently they know me.


  5:34 pm
Donald Trump, Humor  

July 20, 2015

Des Moines Register: Trump a “Wholly Unqualified Feckless Blowhard” Who “Pollutes the Policial Waters”, Should Drop Out Now

The Des Moines Register is one of the most respected go-to publications for serious coverage of the American political process, especially as it pertains to the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses. Tonight, their editorial board released an official editorial that aims to deliver massive body blows — and perhaps a knockout punch — to Donald Trump. Some highlights:

It’s time for Donald Trump to drop out of the race for president of the United States. …

Trump, by every indication, seems wholly unqualified to sit in the White House…

His comments were not merely offensive, they were disgraceful. So much so, in fact, that they threaten to derail not just his campaign, but the manner in which we choose our nominees for president. By using his considerable wealth, his celebrity status, and his mouth to draw attention to himself, rather than to raise awareness of the issues facing America, he has coarsened our political dialogue and cheapened the electoral process.

He has become “the distraction with traction” — a feckless blowhard who can generate headlines, name recognition and polling numbers not by provoking thought, but by provoking outrage.

In just five weeks, he has polluted the political waters to such an extent that serious candidates who actually have the credentials to serve as president can’t get their message across to voters. In fact, some of them can’t even win a spot in one of the upcoming debates, since those slots are reserved for candidates leading in the polls…

Trump has proven himself not only unfit to hold office, but unfit to stand on the same stage as his Republican opponents.

As they say on the internets, read the whole thing. It’s absolutely scathing in its critique, and the number of punches pulled clocks in at precisely zero.

  7:33 pm
Donald Trump, Iowa Watch  

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