November 5, 2015

Our Republican Future

  1:07 pm

Democrats believe that because the Republican Party is the party of old white people who are declining as a percentage of the electorate the future is theirs. This suggests that we will reach a point, and may already be there, when it will be impossible to elect a Republican President.  The biggest gains will be among Hispanic voters, who have displaced blacks as the largest racial minority in the country.  But other ethnic minorities are also gaining, such as Asians, gays, secular whites, government employees, Greens, and too many others to mention.

In this scenario, it really doesn’t matter what’s happening now because tomorrow the Left will rule.  This is a subset of the mindset on the Left that has been with us ever since Karl Marx adopted the Hegelian dialectic, which asserted that the thesis/antithesis/synthesis process dictates that a form of communism is inevitable.  And that seemed to be true.  In the 50s, 60s, and even into the 70s it was true that no country that had ever become ruled by Communists had ever reverted back to a pre-Communist form of government.  So, since countries occasionally went Communist, and since they never became unCommunist, the world would be run totally by Communists.  Many conservatives believed that as well.  William F. Buckley, Jr., said that the mission of conservatives was to “stand athwart the tide of history and yell Stop!”

And then, in the late 80’s, it stopped.  Communism collapsed.

In the Democrat version of dialectical materialism blacks, Hispanics, youth, Asians, gays, etc., will always vote for Democrats.  And as those groups increasingly become a majority it’s all she wrote for The Grand Old Party.  But if that were true, wouldn’t it be happening already?  Whites have been a declining percentage of the electorate throughout the lives of everyone alive today.  But what we are actually seeing is something far different:

Since Obama took office, Republicans have gained 13 United States Senators, 12 Governors, 69 members of the House of Representatives, and 905 State Legislators, giving the GOP total control of redistricting in most of the country through at least the 2020 process, as well as Congress.  As Chris Cillizza observes in The Washington Post:

*” With Matt Bevin’s win in Kentucky on Tuesday night, Republicans now hold 32 of the nation’s governorships — 64 percent of all the governors mansions in the country. (One race, in Louisiana, won’t be decided until next month. Democrats believe they have a good chance of winning that race against now-Sen. David Vitter.)

* Democrats’ failure to take over the Virginia state Senate means that Republicans still hold total control of 30 of the country’s 50 state legislatures (60 percent) and have total or split control of 38 of the 50 (76 percent.)”

There are only seven states in the nation in which Democrats have full control, meaning that they have the Governorship and both chambers of the state legislature.  It used to be more, but liberal policies have failed at the statewide level even as Obama has failed at the federal level.  As a defense mechanism against economic ruin, states like Massachusetts, Illinois, and Maryland elected Republican Governors in 2014 to stop the madness.

Democrats are controlled by rich, white, old ladies; Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, Elizabeth Warren, Barbara Boxer, Patty Murray, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and numerous others.  They set the agenda along the lines of whatever they happen to be thinking at the moment and expect blacks, Hispanics, what is left of the labor movement, and the other parts of their coalition to carry out their orders.

So if they think everyone should be paid $15 an hour, regardless of whether a given employee is contributing $15 an hour to the profitability of the employer or not,  and it must be enforced in all circumstances.  This leads to all those small businesses going out of business in Seattle, where $15 an hour is law, the results of which are that ballot initiatives to adopt it elsewhere failed this week.  It really doesn’t matter what they think, but whatever it is must be mandatory.

Every survey of blacks and Hispanics have shown them to be more conservative on social issues, and more interested in upward mobility, than Democrats as a whole.  And they can least afford, as groups, to pay the costs of the failed economic policies of Democrats.  Since Obama came into office the private disposable income per capita in America has gone down thousands of dollars.  It’s gone down more for the middle class, but the poor, which have been rising as a percentage of the population, can least afford ANY decline in income.  The failure of the Obama Administration to improve, or even maintain, the living standards and quality of life for most of the individual voters who comprise its coalition indicates that the said coalition won’t hold together.

All that is needed to win the Presidency is a candidate who can compellingly sell the country on a truly conservative version of hope and change.  This will realign politics in the country and win the future for the Republican Party.




October 26, 2015

Is Jeb Bush Looking For An Exit?

  1:17 pm

So far, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush’s campaign for president in 2016 has been underwhelming. He has raised substantial campaign funds, and he has for the most part a first-rate campaign staff, but his performance as a candidate has not raised his standing in the polls (which he earlier led), nor his standing with political observers (who had anticipated him as the Republican frontrunner going into the primary/caucus season in early 2016).

With the third GOP presidential debate only a few days away, the pressure grows sharply for Mr. Bush to turn in a much better performance than in the first two. He isn’t helping himself either by complaining about his opponents, especially Donald Trump and Ben Carson, each of who lead him in most polls.

As far as I know, no one has ever successfully won the presidency by complaining about his opponents. On the other hand, Mr, Bush has put forward some excellent economic plans, including a very serious free market plan to eliminate the unpopular and unworkable Obamacare legislation without incurring much hardship to those who need a new federal plan. Mr. Bush’s resume is as good, or better than that any of his rivals, and his experience as chief executive of the large state of Florida was impressive. Nor is temporarily downsizing his campaign staff and expenditures without good sense,

His primary problem so far seems to be a lack of notable skills as a campaigner, including those of a debater. A further frustration for his supporters and those of the other experienced candidates is that three non-politicians with no previous elected experience, Donald Trump, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina, are leading the GOP field by a large margin at the present time.

The irony of his situation is that Mr, Bush, by virtue of his fundraising, staff and name recognition, is best-suited to endure through the present environment and possibly re-emerge three months from now when the all-important state primary and caucus voting begins. This is exactly what Florida Senator Marco Rubio and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie are doing with far less resources.

When challenged by reporters, Mr. Bush is ill-advised to say “blah blah blah.” And when ruminating over the campaign so far, it does him no good to deride those voters who are giving his less-experienced opponents higher poll numbers. He is well-advised to continue to come up with good economic solutions to the nation’s toughest problems, and to work on his communication skills. He might not be able to become a William Jennings Bryan or a Ronald Reagan on the stump, but he can and should improve his campaign manner.

I hope Mr, Bush did not believe, when he entered the 2016 contest, that his nomination was inevitable or fore-ordained (as perhaps some of his supporters believed). Winning a major party nomination for president is always very hard work, and this cycle, it appears to very hard work indeed.

Mr. Christie, Mr. Rubio and Mr. Kasich are also very credible  as future leaders of the free world in this cycle, and it would appear that the one of them, including Mr, Bush, who wants it most, and will work for it the hardest, has the best chance for the prize.

Copyright (c) 2015 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.


The Republican Civil War

  12:18 pm

From Fred Barnes in The Weekly Standard:

“The loudest complaint of the Freedom Caucus is that GOP leaders haven’t waged war against Obama and have settled for poor compromises with Democrats, such as the budget deal Ryan negotiated in 2013 with Patty Murray, his Democratic counterpart in the Senate.

Their clout is enhanced by support from influential conservative groups. Red State, Heritage Action, Breitbart, the Drudge Report, and much of the conservative talk radio universe are allies, as are prominent conservatives Ann Coulter, Brent Bozell, and Sean Hannity of Fox News. Drudge posted five anti-Ryan links in one day last week, and Bozell gave Ryan a grade of “F” on conservative issues.

The dissidents have a problem with two numbers, 60 and 67. Republicans need 60 votes in the Senate to quash a filibuster. With only 54 Republicans, they need 6 Democrats. On the Iran nuclear deal, 4 Democrats voted with 54 Republicans. The resolution to disapprove the deal died. Despite failing to defund Planned Parenthood, the dissidents continue their effort. But it’s futile. And there’s no possibility of getting the 67 votes needed to override an Obama veto. Still, they argue that keeping alive the issue of Planned Parenthood’s sale of fetal body parts is worthwhile.”

Barnes goes on to make the obvious point:  The Republicans in Congress can only go on the offensive on matters that anger the dissidents by shutting down the government.  The problem is that there’s no way to win because the Left controls the media and Obama has the veto pen.  So we come out of a shut down without getting our way on the issue, while being blamed by Americans who watch the main steam media for childish obstructionism.

Paul Ryan and most Republicans in Congress share the frustration with the gridlock in Washington, but caution patience since there isn’t any way of changing things without winning the Presidency next year.  If Republicans get that, it can do pretty much anything it thinks is necessary to turn the country around.  But is there a way to get there from here?

There isn’t any way for a GOP dissident in The House of Representatives to become the Speaker, and if a member of the majority can’t get to 218 votes in the Caucus, John Boehner will either stay on as Speaker or Nancy Pelosi will once again assume that mantle.  The best possible outcome right now is if Ryan gets the Speakership, but it might not be long before there is another open revolt. The debt limit will need to be raised soon, and Obama is in no apparent mood to compromise.  If Ryan yields on the question while getting no significant concessions in return for raising the limit, the Caucus will split apart.

The problems in Congress reflect the greater Republican divide in the country at large, as witness the battle of ‘outsiders’ vs. insiders, aka the “establishment,” in the nomination quest.  Carly Fiorina appears to be fading, but according to polls, about half of Americans who could vote in Republican Primaries and Caucuses favor one of the 3 candidates who have never held political office, and who have been vocally denouncing those who have as being part of the dread political class.  All this, without analyzing what those who have held office want to do to make America better.

It’s possible to see Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, or Ted Cruz winning the nomination, e.g., for the reason that Donald Trump might be forced to go after Ben Carson, no matter how nice he’s been, at least if he wants to win Iowa.  This could hurt both Carson AND Trump.  It’s possible because the field of the so-called establishment candidates will narrow as some are forced to drop out, augmenting the support of those who are left.  And because lots of Super PAC spending that has mostly been on the sidelines, waiting for the main event, will come into play.  And because people will more jealously guard the disposition of their one and only vote in the process and pay more attention to the issues.  And because there are a lot more candidates who have held office in the race than have not, and therefore can personally campaign and reach more people, a factor more telling as candidates get more negative about those at the top of polls.  And because those supporting the outsiders have been shown to be less likely to vote.

But that’s only one possible outcome.  It’s also possible that Trump, Cruz, or Carson might get the nomination, particularly since Trump’s voters and Carson’s voters tend to have the two as both their first and second choice.  And because Ted Cruz could emerge as an acceptable compromise.

The greater problem is that regardless of who wins, there will be great difficulties in consolidating the GOP base by a year from November.  The divide derives from two separate world views that seem to be more diametrically opposed than they even were last time.  Ted Cruz, as an example, has been vociferously crusading on the notion that we lost last time because good conservatives didn’t show up on election day, presumably because one of “them” got the nomination.  He doesn’t seem to realize that a lot of life-long Republicans might not be able to vote for a nominee he might approve of, such as himself.

What could go wrong?


October 8, 2015

A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand

  2:53 pm

Kevin McCarthy of California, House Majority Leader, dropping out of the race for Speaker of the House on the day of the election among the Republican Caucus merits a third FPP on the contest this week. The first two were predicated on the basic math that more than suggested that McCarthy couldn’t get to 218 votes, something absolutely necessary for a Republican to prevail in the election involving the entire chamber .

This basic math was due to intensely strong feelings on the part of those willing to go to the mattresses against the old leadership. While there are 247 Republicans in the House and only 188 Democrats, the fact that there are more than 30 members with those feelings necessitates finding someone outside of the old leadership group to represent the Party.

This problem seemed unsolvable until Jason Chaffetz of Utah threw his hat into the ring, running on the idea that someone with the right disposition, and with superb communication skills, and an established record of working well with both sides is needed to bridge the divide and establish unity.

Having watched the clueless reaction by both Fox and CNN following McCarthy’s decision, it’s safe to say that his election had been assumed to be inevitable, and the brief news flashes of Chaffetz getting into the race had been mere lip service to his announcement.  But it is clear that Jason’s reason for getting in, that the math didn’t add up, was right on target.

Meanwhile, the obvious people to take on the job have all declined to go after it.  Paul Ryan of Wisconsin wants to stay on as head of Ways and Means.  Jeb Hensarling of Texas and Trey Gowdy of South Carolina are going to stay on as head of their respective committees.  No major figure has stepped up or expressed interest as of now.  Daniel Webster of Florida, who was in the race, and who had won the support of the House Freedom Caucus led by Jim Jordan of Ohio, has expressed that he’s not sure if he will stay in  with the majority leader out of it.  He was, by implication, not really running for the job as much as he was standing in opposition to the status quo.

Only Chaffetz, the head of The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, is definitely still in the running,  and he is still campaigning and lining up support.  Unless someone with real stature in the body jumps in, it’s hard to see anyone else coming out of this.  Chaffetz is the logical candidate to gain support from both sides.  If he does, the House will get more combative, and more conservative.

He figured out the math before anyone else and offered a solution to it.



October 4, 2015

The Next “Comeback” Kid?

  12:25 pm

In late January, 1992, Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign appeared to be over. His personal life had become public scandal, and the experts in Washington, DC were saying he was kaput. At about that time, I ran into one of the senior titans of the national Democratic Party who knew I had predicted two years earlier that Clinton would be the Democratic nominee, and he assured me that Clinton was finished. I told him he could not be more wrong.

Today, 23 years later, there is general consensus among the media and political experts that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has no chance to win. Their absolute certainty was shaken a bit after Mr. Christie’s strong performance in the second GOP debate at the Reagan Library, but the consensus remains.

Look at the polls, they say. Christie is at 1% in Iowa, virtually at the bottom of the competing pack in this first electoral event of 2016. Overall, his numbers improved slightly nationally after the Reagan Library, but he’s still near or at the bottom of the top ten. Look at his high negatives, the experts say. Remember the bridge “scandal”, they add as if to make disputing them pointless.

But what do they say when six of the top Republican figures in  Iowa, including close allies of the longest-serving governor in the nation, Terry Branstad, have just endorsed him?

What do they say when figures such as Rick Perry and Scott Walker (the latter only weeks ago leading the pack in Iowa) withdraw so early from the contest, leaving fewer sitting and former governors in the race?

What do they say about two major candidates, Jeb Bush and John Kasich, failing to gain traction?

This is not to say that Governor Christie will be the Republican nominee. But with large numbers of delegates to be counted from eastern and northeastern states, the goodwill and alliances he made while campaigning for fellow governors (when he was Republican Governors Association  chair) in 2014, his demonstrated fundraising ability, and, most of all, his exceptional communications skills, it seems ludicrous to suggest he cannot re-emerge. In fact, there are signs that the lead in the polls will, as they did in the 2012 cycle, rotate between the major candidates until the primary/caucus season is underway.

In the 1992 New Hampshire primary, Bill Clinton only came in second. He then declared himself the “comeback kid.” He apparently did not believe the negative pronouncements of his party establishment, his party expert consultants, and the media.

We all know what happened next.

Copyright (c) by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.


September 26, 2015

Why Boehner Left

  6:20 pm

There will now be a myriad of post-mortems about the tenure of John Boehner as speaker of the U.S. house. Each of them will likely focus on his problematic relationship with his own house caucus and his lack of support among many very conservative Republican grass roots voters.

A few weeks ago, I wrote a piece about Speaker Boehner that was widely republished, and received both praise and criticism. It was not uncritical of the Ohio congressman, but it was a tribute to what he had accomplished in his four years leading his party in the Congress. It asserted that Mr. Boehner was the most underestimated man in Washington, DC, while at the same time pointing out his major political defect, his lack of skill at public communication. In the wake of his sudden departure, I stand behind what I wrote.

Normally, such communication is not the first priority of a house speaker, since his or her party’s incumbent president or presidential candidate fulfills that task. Instead, the primary job of a speaker is to manage his caucus and its legislation. In short, the work of the speaker of the house is institutional not public relations. Circumstances, however, alter this, especially when one party controls the White House and the other party controls one or both houses of Congress.

The period 1995 to 1998 had Republican Newt Gingrich as speaker and Democrat Bill Clinton as president. In that era, there was still a will to compromise and cooperate to do the nation’s business. Speaker Boehner came from that world, but President Obama did not. Gingrich is a gifted communicator, one of the best in recent U.S. history, but he could not manage his own caucus, and finally he had to resign in 1998. (He ran a notable campaign for president in 2011-12, and remains as a wise elder statesman for his party.)

In 1995-96, Mr. Gingrich and his majority house caucus shut down the government. It was a PR disaster (although Republicans kept their majorities in 1996 and 1998). In 2013, Mr. Boehner and his majority caucus shut down the government. It, too, was a PR disaster. An attempt to do the same in 2014 was blocked by Mr. Boehner, and he understandably and correctly was resisting doing it again this year, only months before the 2016 national elections.

But the GOP success in the national mid-term elections in 2014 had created a mood in the conservative grass roots to accomplish something dramatic against the hated policies of President Obama. Lacking the votes in both the house and senate to override Mr. Obama’s inevitable vetoes, both Mr. Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have avoided showdown votes which are only symbolic.

Neither Mr Boehner nor Mr. McConnell, however, are good enough communicators to assuage the ferment in their own grass roots. In Mr. Boehner’s case, his intraparty opponents did not have the votes to oust him. All threats to do so were empty ones. But the tensions from them and the dissension took their toll. Mr. Boehner, as I have written, grew in office, became a better communicator and remained a steady conservative. On the other hand, having managed a caucus often out of control, and having realized most of his personal goals (the latest being the inviter and host of Pope Francis, but also including his bold invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address the Congress over Mr. Obama’s objections), John Boehner, after a quarter century in Congress, decided to call it quits.

Kevin McCarthy will probably be his successor. Younger and clearly talented, Mr. McCarthy has hard work before him. As Newt Gingrich once observed, few if anyone are truly prepared to be speaker of the house.

The mavericks in the house might have realized their goal of being rid of Mr. Boehner, but they are far from a majority. Mr. McCarthy, or anyone else who might become speaker, will end up doing what Mr Boehner would have done. Anything else would be folly, and would endanger the likelihood of Republicans electing a president in 2016.

Today, the post-mortems will likely agree that Mr. Boehner had become unpopular and too controversial. Tomorrow, when he is gone, his party will see how valuable, even with his shortcomings, he was in their successes.

Copyright (c) 2015 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.


August 29, 2015

The “Furious Majority” of 2016

  5:55 pm

In 1968, it was said there was a “silent majority” of voters. In 1994, it was said there was an “angry majority” of voters. In 2015, the voters are not just angry, they are “furious.”

No more proof than the early success of the presidential campaigns of Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Bernie Sanders should be needed, but there’s more evidence. In at least one major poll, conservative physician Ben Carson is in second place. Neither Trump nor Carson have ever been elected to office. And there’s more. Businesswoman Carly Fiorina is doing well, and Vice President Joe Biden, hitherto not taken seriously as a 2016 presidential candidate, is being widely urged to run. Although she has said she won’t run, Senator Elizabeth Warren clearly has  notable support in the liberal grass roots.

Only Biden in this group would be classified as “establishment,” and he probably won’t run because the Democratic Party elites still prefer the “sinking” Hillary Clinton and are trying to push him out of the way.  Jeb Bush, the early GOP frontrunner, and clearly the establishment candidate, is fading in the polls despite his name recognition and huge amounts of money raised for his campaign.

Why is this all happening?

American voters are perennially unhappy with politicians, so why is the current “fury” to be taken more seriously than the “silence” or the “anger” in previous presidential elections?

The answer is the result of a number of circumstances, but most notably the chronic failure of current government to restore general economic well-being and confidence, the apparent “dishonesty” of most political rhetoric, the persistent and increasing lack of transparency in the conduct and management of government bureaucracy, and voters’ growing insecurity about the nation’s role in the world. These are taking place with elected and appointed officials of both parties, and there is very little evidence that much is being done about it.

It is being exacerbated by the Obama administration’s cavalier attitude to problems arising from undocumented immigration, its unilateral withdrawal from the U.S. role of leadership in the world, and by the uneven domestic economic recovery.

This has given Republicans a temporary advantage, but should they win in 2016 and fail to produce visible gains, the advantage will shift right back to the Democrats.

Not only are the left and the right “furious” with Washington, DC, so is the unheralded but vital political center, the key element in deciding who wins the White House in 2016. (Historically, populists in the U.S. came from the far right or the far left, but recently, “centrist populists” such as Jesse Ventura and Ross Perot have arisen to disrupt American elections.)

The establishments of both parties would like the Trump, Carson, Sanders and the Fiorina to go away, and almost certainly they will try to make this happen merely by discrediting the candidates. I think this could be a huge political miscalculation. I think it could infuriate voters even more.

The resolution of the political “disruption” can only happen if the “establishment” candidates begin paying attention to what is truly upsetting voters.

My high school motto (McDowell High School in Erie, PA) was Factum Non Verbum (“The Deed Not The Word”). I did not forget it. When a Latin phrase endures for so long, it would be only a matter of time when it made lots of sense on one more occasion.

Copyright (c) 2015 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.


August 24, 2015

Trump Dissed By Those Who Know Him Best

  2:31 pm

From today’s New York Post, from an article by Fredric U. Dicker entitled “It Won’t Be Trump“:

A meeting was just held by 60 movers and shakers of New York Republican politics at the South Hampton estate of billionaire Wilbur Ross.   In attendance were Reince Priebus, Rudy Giuliani, and New York Republican state chair Ed Cox.  Other attendees included builder/developer Earl Mack, Tiger Fund’s Julian Robertson, and bio-fuels magnet John Catismatidis.   A source who attended:

“These are people who know Trump well,  people who have known Trump for years as part of the social   and financial fabric of the city.  They’ve worked with him, they’ve dealt with him, and they know that ultimately he’s going to crash and burn.”

“They see Trump as the kind of city slicker who is out there conning the rubes whom he calls the people.  But the expectation is that the popularity he’s developed will start to change as people really come to understand Trump’s past, his corporate bankruptcies, his 3 wives, his changed positions on abortion rights,  legalizing drugs, high taxes, banning assault weapons….that’s why so many people at the event just aren’t taking Trump all that seriously.”

“The consensus is that it won’t be Trump.”

Actually, according to Dicker, it was “almost unanimous.”

Trump is now trying to raise money, but it appears that he will have to raise it from the aforementioned “rubes.”  The wealthy probably aren’t going to be forthcoming.  One would think that someone who is “very, very rich” wouldn’t have to go hat in hand to others who are very, very rich.

David Karol, Professor of Government and Politics at The University of Maryland says:  “Trump is a loose cannon.  They don’t know what he’s going to do, they, being party insiders.  For them, every alarm is triggered with him.”

Karol says that “early endorsements in the invisible primary are the most important cause of candidate success in the state primaries and caucuses.”  He reasons that endorsers influence the outcome of the race by strengthening local ground games, promoting the candidate to fellow party leaders, and pitching the candidate to voters.

In 538’s interactive endorsement tracker, Jeb’s in the lead, and Trump’s not on the list.  In the New York Times’ tracker, Jeb’s in the lead and Trump’s 12th.  In Quinnipiac, Trump very recently had the worst favorables of anyone in the party except Chris Christie.  But as bad as his numbers are with Republicans, they are much worse with the population as a whole:

Trump:  minus 14 in Florida, minus 22 in Ohio, and minus 21 in Pennsylvania.

It’s not going to be Donald.


August 21, 2015

Trump’s Iowa Co-Chair: Trump’s Immigration Plan “A Boondoggle” and “A Big Mistake”

  12:40 pm

Well, this is a bit embarrassing:

Donald Trump may be the spinning top that won’t fall down, but his Iowa co-chair is cringing at some of his recent statements.

“On illegal immigration, he wants to gather up the families and ship them out? That was a boondoggle. The caucusgoers are like, ‘What?’ That was a big mistake,” Richard Thornton told The Des Moines Register.

But Thorton still thinks the Republican candidate can plow forward, but he is going to have to expand his policy issues to do so. He told the Register Trump needs to focus on the economy, bringing back jobs from overseas and term limits.

This comes as early state GOP operatives are declaring enough is enough with regards to Trump and his immigration plan:

Donald Trump may have the whole Republican field talking about immigration, but early-state insiders wish he would just stop.

Trump’s plan… is particularly galling to New Hampshire GOP insiders — 85 percent of whom said the real estate mogul and current GOP front-runner’s immigration plan was harmful to the party. Nearly two-thirds of Iowa Republicans said the same.

“He’s solidly put an anchor around the neck of our party, and we’ll sink because of it,” an Iowa Republican said of Trump.

“This kind of garbage only appeals to the hard core … while alienating the soft middle that we must win in order to take the presidency,” vented another Iowa Republican.

A Granite State Republican said it was “harmful to the party, the brand and the future of our country.”

“This move is not helpful in broadening the November 2016 pool of voters,” warned a New Hampshire Republican.

“A great way to throw the general and become a permanent minority party,” agreed an Iowa Republican.

Overall, 71% of Republicans say Trump’s plan is harming the Republican Party. On the other side of the aisle, 97% of Democrats are happy, saying Trump is hurting the Republican Party.

Please note that the question was not whether or not Trump’s plan was harming Trump, but whether it was harming the Republican party at large. Just as I wrote here at Race yesterday, Trump used to be an amusing sideshow in this campaign. Now, however, he poses a real threat to the health and success of the Republican Party as a whole – and therefore, of the nation. It’s not often a Republican does something that makes 97% of Democrats happy, but Trump has managed to do just that. Somewhere, Bill and Hillary Clinton are smiling.

I’m assuming Trump’s Iowa co-chair will not have a job much longer, but I appreciate his willingness to offer an honest assessment of what’s happening. If Trump was looking to destroy the GOP, he’s doing a fine job. Here’s hoping more Republicans will recognize what that 71% already have and put that destruction on hold by moving away from Trump.


August 18, 2015

Love Thy Neighbor, Trump Style

  4:28 pm

The following excerpt is from NBC, via The Fix:


TRUMP: “the executive order gets rescinded. One good thing about…”

TODD: “You’ll rescind that one too? You’ll rescind the Dream Act executive order, the DACA?”

TRUMP: “We have to make a whole new set of standards. And when people come in, they have to come in…”

TODD: “You’re going to split up families. You’re going to deport children?”

TRUMP: “Chuck…No, no. No, we’re going to keep the families together.”

TODD: “But you’re going to kick them out?”

TRUMP: “They have to go.”

TODD: “What if they have no place to go?”

The question is whether deporting the currently estimated 11.2 million undocumented aliens in our country is a recipe for a majority in the electorate. If it is, Donald is our next president.

But according to Gallup, only 31% of Republicans want to deport all illegal aliens. According to a poll by The Public Opinion Research Institute, 57% of Republicans favor a path to citizenship. That would suggest that a Republican who favors a path to citizenship has a higher ceiling than Donald.

One can argue that, according to this data, Trump’s ceiling in the GOP primary is approximately 31%. He hasn’t reached it yet, but that’s about as high as he can go.  Jeb favors a path to legal status, which obviates concerns about illegals voting en masse for Democrats because only citizens can vote.  Others have suggested a path to citizenship, with varying requirements to qualify.  Donald wants to send them all away, and then let some of them back.  How exactly is that done?  I’ve seen cost estimates for the process of anywhere from $200 billion to $400 billion.  No one knows, but it wouldn’t be anything remotely close to free.

If you’re still not Trumped out, what do YOU think?


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