Trump Forces GOP to Decide What Kind of Party to Be

The crowded GOP field is like the Tour de France peloton, with the candidates pumping promises and throwing surprise attacks on each other as they pedal furiously down the campaign trail. And now that clown from Manhattan - if you believe the GOP establishment - has the nerve to wear the yellow jersey. Donald Trump is out in front in the latest poll, by CNN and ORC with 18% support, even among GOP voters. While Donald on steroids is unsettling to say the least, it’s more likely that his cheating centers on his hair color, if we need to accuse him of something. And the GOP establishment is frantic over Donald and do indeed accuse him. Not to say Trump does not say outrageous things. But his support is growing and he really is an indication of a groundswell of anger among Republican voters.

We could talk about how Carson has dropped by half in these poll numbers, but that's back page news now. Occasionally Scott Walker can push his way to the front with some tough pragmatic talk on fiscal policy and devolution, but did you notice Jeb Bush is second and no one is talking about him? That may be a good thing, slow and steady, just like Jeb. Or actually his campaign, to be fair to the brainy centrist Bush. But instead it's all Trump. And yes his style and his salesy showmanship have given him a ready-made public base. But it seems to actually be what he's saying. As much as what he's saying is denigrated or winced over by beltway veterans, it plays wonderfully in much of red state America. In much of America itself, perhaps. And that means illegal immigration and amnesty matter even more than pollsters thought they did as flashpoint issues. It's as if Trump is the only candidate to have taken Lou Dobb Tonight's Broken Borders seriously. Like GOP voters. Unlike GOP establishment types. In some ways, it seems Trump will force the GOP to decide what kind of party they will be in the next election. The stakes are important for November 2016, but they are even more important in terms of the electoral cycles that follow. Unless Trump offers the GOP the easy way out by eventually running as a third party candidate. What that would do for the chances of the GOP candidate left standing is another matter.

Posted by Keeley at July 29, 2015 9:26 PM
Comments
Comment #396893

Trump is a moderate Democrat who became a Republican when far-left liberals took over the Democratic Party.
He supports gun bans, single-payer healthcare, abortion etc…, but because he is against illegal immigration, as most Americans are, he is now a Republican?

Trump isn’t forcing anything, the Republican Party is becoming the Democrat Party of yesterday on its own.

Way to aid in keeping the country moving left, Republicans and so-called Conservatives.

Posted by: kctim at July 30, 2015 10:12 AM
Comment #396894

In 2012 it was common to compare the field of GOP presidential candidates to a clown car. In 2016, we’ve moved beyond the clown car and three ring circus anaology. Now, we are talking Ripley’s Believe It or Not.

Keeley & kctim, I do not think Trump actually has any policies. His immigration ‘policy’? Build a wall, charge Mexico to build it, and deport everyone because they are murderers and rapists (some, he assumes, are good people). Goodness gracious! The financial cost would run in the billions, perhaps hundreds of billions. His foreign policy? Get tough! Just get tough! And no, that is NOT a foreign policy.

Believe It or Not. Calling his support a groundswell of anger is putting it kindly. I would agree it is irrational. I would also point out it grows from a Nativist base. It comes from the dark side of the American character- inarticulate, full of hatred for THEM, and angry about being sold out year after year by the business/establishment/corporatist wing of the Republican Party.

Believe It or Not. I predicted this will be the first time in a long time the business/establishment candidate did not win the nomination, because this time, that candidate is Jeb Bush. His last name is Bush. Game, set, match.

Believe It or Not. My early pick for the nomination was Cruz. Cruz did succeed in raising $38 million, but $36 million of it comes from just four people. It will keep him in the race as long as he feels like running, but will Cruz continue to run as a Republican? He has already burned his bridges in the Senate. He is done there. The rest of his term will be symbolic, and sooner or later, Texans will notice their Senator is all talk and incapable of any action whatsoever. McConnell and crew will take their revenge. So Cruz is incentivized to tuck into Trump’s wake and hope to pick up those votes when Trump crashes and burns, or turn his back on the GOP and run as independent with Trump.

Believe It or Not. Trump may run as an independent. He already smells a rat in this upcoming debate. FOX is very ambivalent about this nominee. On the one hand, Trump has “fired up the crazies,” something that FOX has been doing for years. On the other hand, Murdoch and friends are not stupid enough to believe Trump will succeed. Turning the race into a reality show and supporting a candidate with no policies is obviously a bad idea.

Carson, by the way, is fading fast. He could not successfully staff an organization- they quit on him- and he has a reputation for squandering campaign funds on the good life. Nothing but the best for the Doctor!

Oddly enough, the best candidate looks like Kasich from OH. He’s a lock for VP. He actually says sane things most of the time (as long as he can stay away from the social issues). Even on social issues, he does all right when he expresses the need for compassion.

Posted by: phx8 at July 30, 2015 10:40 AM
Comment #396895

Phx8

What’s not hard to believe is that you are repeating exactly what everybody else on the left is saying. Like you guys all get on the same page in hopes of forming a narrative that will best help Hillary get elected, lol.

Are you guys seriously that worried about the joke known as Trump? I don’t put much stock in polls this early, but he11, even that nut Sanders is up by 6 or 7 over Trump right now.

Posted by: kctim at July 30, 2015 12:20 PM
Comment #396896

I love it. Thrash the R candidates while the beloved Hillary is swooning in the polls. Is it time for Biden to enter the race to prevent a debacle?

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 2:12 PM
Comment #396897

Trump and Cruz are the most exciting thing to happen to the Gouty Old Party since Sarah Palin. The GOP has nominated every tired old horse and “weak as puke” guy they could find to ensure a D win.

We’ve got some real firebrands running this time around in the R party. Win or lose, they will shake things up and get Americans attention focused on our bloated and non-functioning Democratic Republic.

Hillary is the status-quo candidate with absolutely nothing new to offer citizens. She stands for nothing but big spending, big regulation and big coverup of her dismal record.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 2:28 PM
Comment #396898

kctim,
“What’s not hard to believe is that you are repeating exactly what everybody else on the left is saying.”

I’m not sure what you are referring to, but maybe everyone is saying it because that is what is actually happening.

Hillary will win in a landslide. She’s doing the smart thing right now by keeping a low profile. There’s no reason to distract attention from the spectacle of the GOP presidential campaign.

Should Trump be taken seriously? No. But the fact is, he is being taken seriously by conservative voters in the GOP. He’s in first or second in most polls, sometimes in first by double digits. And let’s face it- Trump is entertaining. I mean, I literally laugh out loud when Trump does his schtick. “I’m so rich. I’m very, very wealthy. And I’m going to make America great again. It’s going to be wonderful. That’s the best part about being rich. I know how to make Americans richer.” He’s a lot more fun to watch than Scott Walker refusing to answer whether he accepts the theory of evolution. “I’m not going to answer that question.”

Will Biden run? I doubt it. He’s been VP for eight years and he just went through a really hard experience losing his son. I know his deceased son asked him to run, but Biden has already had a long and distinguished career of public service. It would be understandable if he chose to leave the stage.

By the way, as if the upcoming debate was not enough, the GOP is heading towards a self-implosion in September. They only have 12 days to pass a LOT of crucial legislation to keep the government running, and there are some conservatives who want to blow it all up over PP and other issues.

When Hillary’s opponents are bent on dousing themselves with gasoline and lighting a match, there is no reason for her to shout ‘look at me.’

Posted by: phx8 at July 30, 2015 3:22 PM
Comment #396899

It takes a fleet of bellhops to handle Hillary’s political baggage.

I do miss her shouting. She sounds like a squealing pig when she does. And, I miss her really poor imitation of “poo” “blackspeak”.

Hillary makes more gaffs than Biden and I relish that as well.

Let’s see now. It will be fun to listen to her defend obama and his outrageously poor decision making. She must support whatever wacky social positions come down the line. She must endure taking a leak in unisex bathrooms on the campaign trail. She must defend selling human baby body parts. She must defend killing and rape in sanctuary cities. She must defend selling out America to the Iranians. She must defend her publicly known infamous lies.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 3:41 PM
Comment #396900

It would take a miracle for HRC to win the 2016 election. Fortunately, the GOP has over a dozen such miracles vying for the nomination.

Posted by: Warren Porter at July 30, 2015 3:50 PM
Comment #396901

WP,
Lol. Good one. It’s a veritable odditorium of GOP candidates. Believe It. Or. Not.

Btw, Rand Paul’s campaign is dying on the vine. He can’t raise money. Cruz and Perry can raise money. They just can’t get votes.

Could it be? Could it be? Jeb!
Wait. No.
Jeb:-(

Posted by: phx8 at July 30, 2015 3:56 PM
Comment #396903

“It would take a miracle for HRC to win the 2016 election.”

Ah, yes…Satanic malevolence.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 3:58 PM
Comment #396904

Come on Phx8, there are only two reasons Hillary is keeping a low profile:
1. Negative baggage.
2. She is trying to ride the fence on every issue in order to be seen as the moderate candidate.

Trump is being taken seriously at this moment for two reasons:
1. He tells it like it is.
2. People are pi$$ed off about the negative economic and social impact of our uncontrolled illegal immigration.

Looking at it from the outside, this whole thing is quite amusing.
The democrat establishment has already picked who you guys will vote for and is using an extremely far-left loon to make her seem sane.
While the Republican establishment wants to pick who will run, but their voters keep telling them to stuff it.

Posted by: kctim at July 30, 2015 4:09 PM
Comment #396905

No more Clintons

No more Bushs

No more illegals

No more adding to national debt

No more bowing to Iran

No more unconstitutional acts


Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 4:17 PM
Comment #396906

This is hilarious. On a posting regarding Trump and his possibility of either getting a nomination or starting a third party candidacy, all the conservatives want to talk about is how bad the Democrats are. Not a peep about anyone they can support or admire, sorry guys.

Still pushing the meme that President Obama is a failure after nearly 7 years of what some consider one of the most successful Presidencies in recent memory. I’m pretty sure the Democrats learned in 2014 that it didn’t do them a stitch of good to not align with President Obama, it cost them the Senate due to the deer in the headlights look by some of the candidates when asked did they support President Obama. Well he was re-elected and they didn’t even get close in the Senate. The Democrats should come out loud and proud next year regarding President Obama’s accomplishments but hey who knows, they are politicians and have been known to do really dumb things.

What about this scenario, as improbable as it may seem? Trump decides that the Republican party money men disrespected him enough and starts a third party campaign(quite likely to happen). Sanders somehow surges enough to convince him to run as an Independent (because that is what he is, although I don’t think that it would be very likely to happen at all). But just as a what if, that would put 4 candidates up for President in the next election. Bush, Trump, Sanders and Clinton. Bush and Trump would cancel each others support and Clinton would still make it due to a less divided electorate when it comes to her candidacy. Wow, 4 presidential candidates! Could it happen?

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 4:33 PM
Comment #396907

Trump could bring back the Know Nothing Party. Very similar sentiments back then except they were against Irish and German immigrants and the Catholic Church where as now they are against Mexican and Hispanic immigrants mostly. Their recent dislike of Pope Francis has the same undertones that was displayed by the Know Nothings back in the mid-1800’s. Plus the words “Know Nothing” sure seem to describe some of the conservative raging white males today. History may repeat itself?

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 4:44 PM
Comment #396908

“….now they are against Mexican and Hispanic immigrants mostly.”

Voted the most stupid remark on WB this week…congrats.

Posted by: Royal Flush at July 30, 2015 4:53 PM
Comment #396909

RF, gee I’m just quoting Trump. Remember him saying Mexico is sending us the criminals? You are nothing if not really dumb sometimes. Who do you think he was talking about the city of Mexico in Missouri? Yikes man, you just can’t keep a consistent thought going it would seem.

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 4:58 PM
Comment #396910

Wait, I know. He was talking about Mexico Maine or Mexico Pennsylvania or Mexico Indiana or Mexico New York. Or maybe Mexico Beach in Florida? RF, I know you might not harbor the same feelings towards Mexicans and Hispanics but you have to see what is being promulgated out there, don’t you? Or maybe not?

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 5:02 PM
Comment #396911

Speak,
As much as I like some of what Sanders says, there are other things I would never go along with. He will not run as a third party candidate. There’s no chance.

Trump? Maybe. The GOP could very well be headed for a brokered convention. In that scenario it is inconceivable the leadership of the GOP would go along with Trump as their candidate. If he is still around at that point, he might do a third party run.

kctim,
Hillary is smart to keep a low profile. Why should she let herself be the story right now? It is SMART to be perceived as a moderate and move to the middle. And her “negative baggage” is largely a figment of the right’s imagination- lots of accusations and never any evidence.

Trump “tells it like it is”? What, exactly, is “it”? Listen to him carefully. It’s all bluster and boasting and bragging. There is virtually no content there. It’s like we are all living in the movie “Idiocracy.”

RF,
You’ll be glad to know the recent weekly unemployment claims report was the lowest in 40 years. Make sure you thank a liberal. You’ll also be glad to know the national debt is stabilizing at a number far lower than anyone would have guessed a few years ago. And remember how the Bush administration used to hide the cost of the Iraq War by excluding it from the budget, and started with a budget surplus, yet finished with a trillion dollar federal deficit. Well, the Obama administration lowered that deficit every single year in office, and it we will be close to a surplus again by the time he finishes. Make sure you thank a liberal.

And what would be so bad about another Clinton? The last time we had one we had a fantastic economy, with 23 million jobs created in eight years and a federal budget surplus. No one has ever come close to that performance, although Obama did amazingly well, considering how bad it was when he came into office.

Posted by: phx8 at July 30, 2015 5:09 PM
Comment #396912

phx8, I agree about Sanders that is why I would hold that probability as highly unlikely. He also seems a lot more intelligent than Trump and would realize that his run would not do good for the country, unlike the out of control ego that we call Donald. We do however live in “interesting times”. Just some musings on the 2016 election year, that’s all. But what would you think if it did come about that way? Or is it too far out there to even consider for you?

I also agree that it is HRC’s election to lose. There is so much going for her that it seems impossible to think that loses unless she somehow snatches defeat from the jaws of victory but it is politics. I am fairly certain that she will dominate the ladies votes and they are a bigger percentage of voters than almost any other segment.

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 5:19 PM
Comment #396913

Speak,
The difference between Trump and Sanders is the difference between night and day. It is the fundamental difference between liberals and conservatives.

Sanders is specific about his policies. His ideas are well thought out. His plans resonate with Americans because they address real issues, such as the cost of college debt. He is invariably polite and insists on discussing issues. He refuses to attack Hillary no matter how often the media baits him. But I don’t think Sanders will go there. Hillary could buy him off with a plum cabinet position or promise to fulfill something off his wish list, and I would have no problem seeing Sanders take that position or make that deal.

Trump is just the opposite of Sanders. His policies are… well… There are none. Saying “stop illegal immigration” is not a policy. He is rude and boorish, calling illegal immigrants from Mexico rapists and murderers, disrespecting war heroes and POWs, and calling his opponents names at the drop of the hat. It is modern conservatism writ large, a reality show mentality on the national stage, a freak show in the odditorium.

Yes, Donald Freakin’ Trump leads the polls among Republicans. Believe It. Or. Not.

It is only a matter of time before one of the Republican candidates bites off the head of a live chicken on camera.

Posted by: phx8 at July 30, 2015 5:31 PM
Comment #396914

phx8, maybe next week on the chicken head biting? I disagree about Sanders. We need him in the Senate and he knows that. He has never seemed to be the type of politician looking for a plum political offering, unless you are talking about supporting some of the policies that he is talking about now. I could see HRC scrumming the Democrats and popping out with the ball to cross the line. That is what a good politician does. Turns adversaries into supporters by recognizing their ideas. I am not certain that she has the political acumen to accomplish that, I think Bill did. We shall see.

But enough of this talk of the Democrats. You’ve touched on several of the Republican candidates. But after yesterdays announcement by Gilmore, there are now seventeen (count them 17) Republican party candidates. Maybe you need a bigger keyboard to go into all of them?

Posted by: Speak4all at July 30, 2015 5:39 PM
Comment #396916

Speak,
I’m not suggesting Sanders would take a position in the Clinton cabinet out of some kind of corrupt venality. He would make the trade in order to advance what he believes in- and I think his values and HRC’s are similar enough for them to work together.

Meanwhile, Trump announced his ‘policy’ about illegal immigrants. His plan? Deport 11 million people. It’s a monstrous thing to propose. Why would anyone want to cause so much suffering? Why would anyone want to punish 11 million people for the crime of wanting to be Americans? We would become a country where people live in fear of the midnight knock on the door. To make nativism and the hatred of THEM into a national policy is an embarrassment. The weird thing is, this is what Trump supporters believe will ‘make America great again.’

Some conservatives think Trump is a Democratic plant. That’s silly. But a Democrat could not wish for a more damaging candidate to the GOP than Trump. But it’s not just Trump. It’s the base of the GOP. They want to defund PP again- the 8th time in eight years- and they are depending on gory videos to help their cause. What they are counting on is the usual ignorance of science prevalent among that base. That base does not understand medical research, or what is involved in seeking a cure for cancer. They do not understand the repercussions of shutting down over 700 clinics dedicated to the health care of women. (Closing the clinics and giving those funds to hospitals is NOT an equivalent, because 700 clinics would still be closed). The conservatives don’t get how damaging this is to them. It is like they are writing the script for a movie called ‘The War on Women’ and casting themselves as the star, and they don’t even see that it’s obvious to everyone that they are not the star, but the villain. They’re completely oblivious.

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 1:08 AM
Comment #396918

Trump’s deportation plan gets a bit crazier when he couples it with an expedited opportunity to return to the US. We round them all up, send them out one door and take them back in through another door. So, why bother with the first step?

When it comes to the “Dreamers”, Trump says that he actually has a “big heart.” He intends to do something for them.

So, the more specific, he becomes on illegals, the more he sounds like any other politician. Mexico isn’t going to build a huge wall for the US. We aren’t going to actually permanently deport all the illegals residing in the US. We aren’t going to throw away the “Dreamers.”

Reality is beginning to meet bluster. Even the “Donald” admits in a CNN interview that he has exaggerated some of his promises. He is after all a salesperson.

Posted by: Rich at July 31, 2015 7:49 AM
Comment #396919

Phx8

Low profile? LOL!
The media has already dubbed Hillary the next President and she is smart enough to keep her mouth shut and let them do all the work right now.

Are you seriously you talking about the imagination of others? Come on man.
Your accusations and assumptions are nothing but partisan imagination. Your “evidence” is based entirely on what you think somebody “really meant,” when they said something.

“Trump “tells it like it is”? What, exactly, is “it”?”

“It” is the fact that we have a serious illegal immigration problem that needs addressing and he says it without mincing words. Something the current administration is not willing to acknowledge or do.

Posted by: kctim at July 31, 2015 9:54 AM
Comment #396921

phx8, I think I understand what you mean about Sanders, might be very interesting to see him as Secretary of Labor. But I just think we will need every voice in the Senate that we currently have to accomplish what the next President may try to do or undo. If HRC does gain the Presidency, I can’t see her raiding the Senate to fill cabinet positions because she knows she will need them for support for her there. Anyway it’s all a bit of conjecture right now but interesting to discuss possible outcomes.

O’Donnell had some very good points last night about Trump and the first debate. He expressed some trepidation about how the Fox moderator would be able to handle Trump. His bombastic proclamations could present a problem in being able to exert controls over the questions and answers. I will be watching.

Rich, exaggeration can be a tool for some sales people but I am not sure if the Republican electorate is sentient enough to see through them as long as he keeps their diet of red meat wild talk filling their need for rage. For myself I wouldn’t buy anything that Trump was selling and have always felt that way, I don’t understand what people see in him but that’s me. Never watched that reality show he has but I don’t watch any of the others either. I did see that he brought a former Sarah Palin campaign person into his campaign organization, can’t remember who it was, but that tells me a lot about what he is trying to do. Yep, he’s a $ale$per$on alright and a grifter too.

Posted by: Speak4all at July 31, 2015 11:42 AM
Comment #396922

kctim,
““It” is the fact that we have a serious illegal immigration problem that needs addressing and he says it without mincing words. Something the current administration is not willing to acknowledge or do.”

What! The Senate passed a bipartisan immigration reform bill and sent it to the House. The House Republicans refused to compromise. They refused to vote for the bipartisan bill. Instead, Congressman King- the one who said the typical Mexican had calves the size of cantaloupes from hauling pot across the desert- yeah, that guy- and Michelle Bachman authored a nativist piece of legislation that went nowhere.

When conservatives failed in the House, Obama signed an executive order that partially addressed the issue. He did as much as he could do, given the limits of his branch of government.

Obama, Senate Democrats, Senate Republicans, and House Democrats all worked together on legislation. House conservative Republicans failed. It’s that simple.

Meanwhile, Trump came out with his plan to address illegal aliens. He wants to deport all 11 million. When pressed on specifics, he had none. Apparently some would be allowed back into the country but not given full legal status. Again, there are no specifics. No one knows how a Trump administration would round up 11 million people. It conjures up a nightmarish vision of what America could become…

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 11:56 AM
Comment #396923

Rand Paul, Rand Paul is he just sitting back and watching the rest of the repubs, doing a Hilary as it were, or has he gave up.

With Trump leading the crazy it won’t be long before the rest of the bunch sounds normal…..well maybe normal is pushing it, but less than crazy. I think Trump is more of a repub plant than a dem plant. I mean he is rabble rousing working the TRC’s up for the election and all, making the others look like real presidential timbre and getting some issues out of the way for when things get serious.

So what does it tell you when Graham and Kasich can’t even make the top 10 according to Fox yet Perry, Carson, Walker, and Christie are in.

Posted by: j2t2 at July 31, 2015 12:38 PM
Comment #396924

Phx8

That bipartisan immigration reform bill did not address our problems with illegal immigration. It was nothing but more kabuki theater to prevent losing votes.

Illegal aliens DO bring drugs and crime to the country.

Obama signed an executive order to benefit his political party, NOT to address our illegal alien problem.

We are still over a year out, a candidate not going into depth on illegal immigration is no different than a candidate who’s ONLY answer to EVERY question is ‘tax the rich.’

Posted by: kctim at July 31, 2015 1:01 PM
Comment #396925

j2t2,
Rand Paul looks like he is doomed. He cannot raise money. His foreign policy alienates the Neocons. His stand on abortion alienates libertarians. Politically, he is neither fish nor fowl.

Carson can spend money just fine, but he can’t run a campaign or successfully staff and direct his own organization. No surprise there. He has no business running for president and he has no business being in that debate. He’s easily the most ridiculous candidate that will be on that stage.

Perry has a lot of money. He’ll be around for at least the first few primaries.

I wouldn’t count Kasich out. He will make his stand in NH, and I think he will do better than anyone thinks.

It’s true, Trump makes the rest of the field sound relatively normal and sane, and that really takes some doing. ‘Eleven million immigrants? Deport them all!’
Sure, Donald. Perfectly reasonable.

The debate will be totally awesome for Democrats. Every Democrat and liberal in the country will be crossing their fingers and saying ‘please, please, PLEASE shut down the government over PP funding. Do it! Come on!’ And just about every one of those conservative yahoos on that stage will spout some utterly insane statements support of it- in fact, they will vie with each other to see who can be crazier.

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 1:08 PM
Comment #396926

Now here’s the really funny thing, and I don’t think many people have figured this out yet. In a debate setting with a large number of people on stage, it is usually considered an advantage to be in the middle. Positioning would then be determined by polling popularity. In other words, Trump would be in the middle, flanked by either Jeb!, I mean Jeb:-/ and maybe Scott Walker. It will be almost impossible for Jeb:-/ to ignore Trump. The pained look on Jeb’s face as he listens to Trump bloviate will be a ratings goldmine for FOX. And if Jeb:-/ tries to engage Trump he might sink his candidacy right then and there. Walker is not sharp enough to engage Trump. He knows he will be in way over his head, so he’ll just stare into space and hope Trump goes away. But Trump won’t. And Trump knows Walker is not quick on his feet, so Trump may make him the main target on stage.

Of course, FOX may not observe this format for the debate. They can do anything they want, and they know whoever they put in close physical proximity to Trump risks seeing their presidential campaign turn into a puddle of mud on that stage.

It will be fun fun fun!

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 1:59 PM
Comment #396927

I will watch the Republican debates in hopes of seeing something substantive addressed but I am not expecting much. Have you heard about the new drinking game for this debate? Every time a candidate touches on a substantive subject with thoughtfulness you have to take a drink. Alcoholics Anonymous and Citizens for Sobriety have endorsed the game. OK, it’s a joke.

Posted by: Speak4all at July 31, 2015 2:14 PM
Comment #396928

I do not expect anything substantive either.

But the positioning of the candidates will be extremely informative. It will be something like reading the tea leaves from those Cold War parades in the Soviet Union &
China, where the position of leaders revealed the amount of their power within the political hierarchy.

Like I said, as the candidate leading in the polls- gack- sorry, I just coughed up a hairball at the thought of President Trump- anyway, by rights, Trump should be in the middle of the stage. He will literally be the center of attention. If Trump is off to one side or the other, the fix is in. FOX and the RNC will have the long knives out for him. If Trump is flanked by a strong personality like Christie, the fix is in. If there is one or more candidate between Trump and Walker, the fix is in for Walker. FOX and the RNC will be protecting the college dropout from the Wharton graduate. That may well happen. If low polling, marginal candidates are in the center of the stage, the fix is in.

It will be incredibly interesting.

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 3:04 PM
Comment #396929

phx8,

You are absolutely right. Kasich is the Republican with the most potential. I wonder how far he can go.

Posted by: Warren Porter at July 31, 2015 7:07 PM
Comment #396930

Kasich is the sleeper in the race and I think he is the best choice for VP. The fact that he comes from the swing state of Ohio is huge. However, he does have some major baggage. He was on the Board of Directors for Lehman Brothers, an investment banking firm whose risky investments in mortgage derivatives caused it to fail, setting off the Great Recession. Kasich also signed a draconian anti-abortion bill in OH, and he approved Medicaid expansion under Obamacare for his state. He’s not as wacky as Huckabee, Carson, Cruz, or some of the other candidates- he usually conducts himself in a dignified manner- but he does have vulnerabilities.

He occasionally says things like this:

“Now, when you die and get to the meeting with St. Peter, he’s probably not going to ask you much about what you did about keeping government small. But he is going to ask you what you did for the poor. You better have a good answer.”

And unlike so much of what conservatives say, that is the kind of statement that invites respect.

Posted by: phx8 at July 31, 2015 10:10 PM
Comment #396931

So the best we can hope for from the repubs is “well he isn’t as crazy as Trump”. My God aren’t repubs shocked at the effects of “conservatism” on their party? They seem to be able to crucify Hilary for no apparent reason yet they cannot police their own. Perry has the bucks but not the brains to be in a debate with anyone without drooling on himself. Walker cannot respond without his owners telling him what to say and whne to say it. Carson, the repub token black, is spending the bucks and living it up on the donors dime while unable to tie his shoelaces on the national stage, Cruz is trying to out do Trump when it comes to crazy, Rubio, who? Huckabee has turned into a fascistic huckster who embarrasses himself as bad as Perry. Christie is a loser who relies on his bully shtick to score points with the repub TRC’s is just another face in the crowd.

My god repubs what has happened to you guys. Seventeen people running and no one who deserves a shot to run the country. I say you flush this group down the toilet and at random get a welfare mother of three as your candidate and you will be better off when it comes to serving your agenda and your country.

Posted by: j2t2 at July 31, 2015 11:28 PM
Comment #396932

I don’t think the Lehman Brothers connection will hurt Kasich in the primary. Remember that the recession was the result of Fannie and Freddie. Firms like Lehman Brothers were blameless. You forget the private sector can never do wrong and whenever something bad happens, the government needs to be the scapegoat.

I also wouldn’t count Walker out of the race. I don’t understand the comparison to Bush. Bush is somewhat centrist, whereas Walker is uncompromisingly

Posted by: Warren Porter at July 31, 2015 11:46 PM
Comment #396933

WP,
Most people do not understand what happened to the economy in the Great Recession. The conservative narrative is that it was the fault of poor people for getting mortgages they couldn’t afford. As a result, conservatives have not been able to say anything sensible about the economy ever since.

Agreed, I wouldn’t count Walker out either. But he is owned by the Kochs, and it is tough for Walker, Perry, and others to criticize Trump after asking Trump for handouts in previous elections. A classic example of why biting the hand that feeds you is a bad idea. No matter how ridiculous Trump may be, at least he is his own man. No one else owns him. And that makes it easy for him to shame people like Walker, who is owned by the Koch Brothers.

Of course, if you’re going to sell out, and you’re going to be owned by someone, it’s nice to owned by the richest guys out there- guys much, much richer than Trump. Walker will never lack for funds.

Unlike Perry and Christie, Walker is home free with his legal problems. Some of his aides were convicted in the John Doe One scandal, but the John Doe Two investigation, which was aimed at Walker, was squashed by four GOP judges on the WI Supreme Court. And those judges, by the way, had their election campaigns funded in part by the Club for Growth, the same group that was accused of breaking laws with Walker in the first place. Ugly, ugly stuff. But for now, Walker is out of the woods.

Bush and Walker are not alike. Bush is a lot smarter and a better speaker. I’m not saying Jeb is a great speaker. Just better than Walker, who is a real snooze fest. Walker is not the brightest bulb in the chandelier, but he knows when to hide the crazy from the public. Walker and Jeb do have this in common: their main goal for the next few months will be to avoid Trump at all costs. They’re too weak to handle him in person and this debate will be an absolute nightmare for both.

Posted by: phx8 at August 1, 2015 12:38 AM
Comment #396935

phx8,

I agree with most of your analysis. However, in the long run, Trump won’t be a problem for Bush/Walker. One day Trump’s flame will burn out. Kasich, Walker and Bush just need to hang in there until the inevitable happens. By then, it will be a 3 way race (or 2 way if Kasich is unable to raise enough money). I can almost guarantee the GOP nominee will be one of those 3. Rubio and Cruz are senators and eventually that will come back to bite them.

Posted by: Warren Porter at August 1, 2015 7:31 AM
Comment #396939

I can’t believe Trump has lasted this long, between the racist comment about illegal immigrants and insulting American POW’s- and then defending the comments! Yet here we are. But I think you are right about playing the waiting game. The serious candidates just need to bide their time. In OH, Kasich has an approval rating of 55%. That’s very good. Obama has an approval rating of 49%. That’s good too. Congress has an approval rating of 8%. It will probably get worse, if possible, with a whole variety of legislation that must be passed in September, yet a GOP who seems more interested in defunding PP than governing. So yeah, you’re right, Rubio & Cruz have built-in vulnerabilities.

Kasich will have a hard time fund raising. The Koch Brothers won’t help him because of his support of Medicaid expansion, and comments about how helping the poor is doing the right thing.

Posted by: phx8 at August 1, 2015 11:15 AM
Comment #396946

I thought that Trump would get away with the immigrant bashing but was astounded that he got away with the comments on McCain and the implied insult to all POWs. Hard to understand. Truly hard to understand. In fact, downright scary.

Posted by: Rich at August 1, 2015 7:08 PM
Comment #396947

It’s hard to understand, Rich. I can understand slamming Kerry’s bronze star and purple heart. That was just crass partisanship. I can understand slamming McCain because he lost in 2008. It’s ugly, but I can understand it. But to slam American POW’s for being captured in the first place? It boggles the mind. It’s like… there is no bottom for these people, no depth too low, no tasteless behavior too over-the-top, nothing out of bounds as long as it calls itself ‘conservative.’

Posted by: phx8 at August 1, 2015 7:32 PM
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