The Medium Is the Message

I’ve got no use for Republican strategist Liz Mair, who has shilled for odious candidates such as Rand Paul, Rick Perry and Scott Walker. But damned if she doesn’t have Trump’s number:

For those of you who can’t watch the video, here’s an excerpt from the transcript via Jezebel:

“Have you lost any hope that the GOP can reign Trump in to be more traditional?” Cooper inquired. “Or at least more disciplined as a candidate?”

“I lost all hope of that probably seven, eight months ago now, quite candidly,” Mair replied. “It’s amazing to me that anybody’s still having a discussion about having some sort of an intervention or bringing him back on message… This is his message. His message is being a loudmouthed dick, basically, and going out there and offending people and then engaging in a bunch of airing of grievances. That’s what he does. He doesn’t have another message.”

She’s right. That’s why it has thus far proved impossible for Trump’s advisers to get him to stop doing self-destructive things like attacking the Khans, re-litigating the primaries, carrying out public feuds with Republican officials who have shown insufficient deference, etc.

Trump is a loose cannon on the leaky SS Republican Party, careening wildly across the deck and blasting in all directions, including at the wheelhouse. The best the party-first deckhands tasked with containing that loose cannon can hope for is to aim future fusillades at Hillary Clinton. But they won’t be able to get him to elevate the tone or focus on policy. Not now. Not ever.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit

205 replies
  1. 1
    The Other Bob says:

    The arrogant, so-called “mainstream Republicans” who want to fix Trump’s message are worse than Trump. They essentially want Trump to lie about himself so they can rebrand him as something other than the fascist he is.

  2. 2
    dmsilev says:

    I’m old-fashioned enough (or maybe retro? Yeah, that) that I like reading a print newspaper over breakfast, and the lead headline in this morning’s LA Times made me smile: “Among the GOP, ‘Panic is rising'”. Good times, good times.

  3. 3
    Barbara says:

    What most Republicans like Ryan seem to have missed is that Trump not only does not want to pivot, and does not think he has to, but that he probably can’t pivot. As in, he does not have the normal political skills of adapting a message or style to the audience in front of him. Just as an example, yesterday, in a rally in Loudoun County Virginia he talked about vanishing factories. This is horse country, and one of the fastest growing, wealthiest counties in America, not just in Virginia. He is not a politician. How can that have escaped their attention?

  4. 4
    Trentrunner says:

    Can we get some traction on Melanoma’s immigration status in the 90s? Seriously, this is a gut check test for our media. Will they pursue a story that would OBVIOUSLY have legs if on the other side?

    We sure as shit spent years on Obama’s completely legit birth status.

  5. 5
    kindness says:

    Geez, Liz makes me feel like I should be donating money to Donald Trump then.

  6. 6
    randy khan says:

    He is what he is. (Or should I say he yam what he yam?)

    The terrible part of this is that, in truth, the best hope for the Republicans is that one of the crazy things he says about Clinton or the Democrats or the world in general somehow hits home in a way that Clinton can’t address. I don’t know what that would be, mind you, but a lightning strike of that kind actually is what they need.

  7. 7
    HRA says:

    They did not see this happening during the primaries when he used the same method against the other R candidates, the press, etc.?

  8. 8
    one_particular_harbour, fka Botsplainer says:

    Trump’s behavior is the consequence of a lifetime of surrounding himself with “yes” men.

    Everybody in his circle all the way down to his doctor (remember that ridiculous report, which must have been subject to a Trump final edit) is an abrasive, fawning, excusemaking, obsequious asshole.

  9. 9
    Splitting Image says:

    It’s amazing to me that anybody’s still having a discussion about having some sort of an intervention or bringing him back on message… This is his message. His message is being a loudmouthed dick, basically, and going out there and offending people and then engaging in a bunch of airing of grievances. That’s what he does. He doesn’t have another message.

    Trump: Festivus goes year-round.

  10. 10
    Barbara says:

    @HRA: They did. They kept hoping voters would bail them out, but they can’t disavow Trump because that would mean disavowing Trump voters and they need those people.

  11. 11
    dmsilev says:

    @Barbara: Not to mention, he spent a good chunk of that rally relitigating large chunks of the primary. Which he won.

  12. 12
    hilts says:

    @Trentrunner:

    It definitely won’t get traction on CNN because all of their anchors are fucking pussies when it comes to Trump. Kudos to Fareed Zakaria for publicly calling him out as a bullshit artist https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8nhV4HM3jI

  13. 13
    Emma says:

    @randy khan: What can they say that hasn’t already been said? What can the MSM do they haven’t tried yet?

  14. 14
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    Note that a “loose cannon on deck” (the full form) causes damage not by firing, but by being a very massive hunk of mobile metal broken free of its moorings, careening around the deck squashing anyone who gets in its way, & impossible to restrain. IMHO that is an even better analogy for Trumpolini on board the pirate vessel SS Rethuglican. And it couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch of cutthroats.

  15. 15
    Stella B. says:

    The Republican base got themselves all spun up over PBO, but they didn’t have a leader cheering them on. Now they have the candidate openly encouraging them. I’m really worried about what may happen as he gets increasingly agitated.

  16. 16
    Steeplejack (tablet) says:

    Hey, Jezebel, it’s rein, not reign.

  17. 17
    hilts says:

    Trump is a loose cannon on the leaky SS Republican Party.

    Hopefully, Trump will be the fucking RMS Titanic 2.0.

  18. 18
    low-tech cyclist says:

    Trump is a loose cannon on the leaky SS Republican Party, careening wildly across the deck and blasting in all directions, including at the wheelhouse. The best the party-first deckhands tasked with containing that loose cannon can hope for is to aim future fusillades at Hillary Clinton. But they won’t be able to get him to elevate the tone or focus on policy. Not now. Not ever.

    And that’s the fundamental reason why Trump should be opposed by pretty much anyone with a brain: he’s a nutcase, and the loosest of loose cannons.

    If he were President, there’s no telling what he’d do, but it’s totally predictable that a good deal of it would be both stupid and dangerous.

  19. 19
    Wapiti says:

    What a sad existence it must be for some segment of the the Republican voters, when their lives are such that their hopes and goals are simply to be lorded over by a loud mouthed jerk.

  20. 20
    MattF says:

    @Emma: I agree. What is there, besides BenghaziBenghazi and EmailEmail?

  21. 21
    The Other Chuck says:

    Johnson breaking double digits now. Trump may get his 27% after all.

  22. 22
    MattF says:

    @The Other Chuck: Trump will now complain about the ‘vicious laws of arithmetic’ that force percentages to add up to 100.

  23. 23
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @hilts:

    Hopefully, Trump will be the fucking RMS Titanic 2.0.

    No. The iceberg.

  24. 24
  25. 25
    Big Ole Hound says:

    Trump and his followers and rally goers are the very people who I have told to “kiss my ass” my whole life so hearing other speak up in this time of political correctness is music to the ears.

  26. 26
    AnotherBruce says:

    Hmmm, is this the first time that the phrase “loud mouthed dick”. Has been heard on what has euphemistically called the Main Stream Media? I had to play this video just to hear that. It was worth it, I LOL’ed.

  27. 27
    low-tech cyclist says:

    @scav:

    Congrats to Tom L! Shortlisted for the Royal Society science book prize!

    Cool beans! WTG, Tom!!

  28. 28

    @scav: Great news! Congrats to Tom.

  29. 29
    mkro says:

    Is “Loudmouth Dick” just an updated version of “Tricky Dick” ? I had read that Trump wanted to emulate Nixon anyhow, so why not just run with it ?

  30. 30
    amorphous says:

    @Barbara: I want someone important to call out the media on their masturbatory fantasy of a ‘pivot.’ The hypocrisy that Trump is attacking Clinton on her honesty while his ‘pivot’ is actively discussed as a ‘when’ or ‘can he?’ by the media, completely missing that they’re cheering him actively lying about who he is or what he stands for by way of this pivot. But they get their race and their daily Win The Day!!!! type story.

    Ugh gross. The media is so horrible at their jobs.

  31. 31
    bystander says:

    I just heard Rick Scott blaming Obama and the CDC for failing to work with Congress to fund Zika related matters. Why, of course, it’s not Florida’s own repubs in Congress voting against their own interests. It makes me wonder how wide spread encephalopathy already is in Florida.

  32. 32
    hedgehog mobile says:

    @scav: Woot! Congratulations Tom. (adds book to already overwhelming reading list)

  33. 33
    rikyrah says:

    SATBY:

    I asked in the previous thread if you have a website for your soaps :)

  34. 34
    hovercraft says:

    Festivus every day!

  35. 35
    Comrade Scrutinizer says:

    @scav: Hoorah Tom!

  36. 36
    low-tech cyclist says:

    @mkro:

    I had read that Trump wanted to emulate Nixon anyhow

    He’s out of luck. They’re both nasty people, but Nixon at least had smarts and self-control.

    Reminds me of a satirical campaign slogan for Nixon from back in the day:

    “Don’t change dicks in the middle of a screw, vote Nixon in ’72!”

  37. 37
    Comrade Scrutinizer says:

    @AnotherBruce: They report, you decide.

  38. 38
    Nom de Plume says:

    @amorphous:

    completely missing that they’re cheering him actively lying about who he is or what he stands for by way of this pivot

    Thanks for pointing this out. “Is Hillary a phony, and can she be trusted? Meanwhile, Trump salvages his campaign by pretending to be someone else! We look at how both sides do it, coming up next on ‘Horserace'”.

  39. 39
    Amir Khalid says:

    @dmsilev:
    Why is Trump fighting the primary over again, when he’s already won it? My theory: because he’s getting trounced by his own ignorance, incompetence and indiscipline in the election proper. While Hillary is quietly taking care of business, listening to people’s concerns, organising people, getting the vote out — doing all the winning things, in other words — Trump is consoling himself by following the common instinct of going to his happy place, to relive the fights he won and how he won them.

  40. 40
    Schlemazel Khan says:

    @HRA:
    They did but were caught in a bind. They could not disagree with his message because it is the message they have been carrying for 50 years. They tried to disagree with his tone and text but after failing for 50 years the base thinks that dog whistle is not cutting it. Also, all the other candidates were shitty so nobody was better.

  41. 41
    hovercraft says:

    @Barbara:
    Rachel Maddow had a segment about his visit, pointed out that all the doom and gloom statistics were either outdated, didn’t apply to Loudoun. He has no campaign, they can’t even get him accurate/ relevant material. Chuck Todd pointed out that in that devastating WaPo interview when the reporter pointed out that Loudoun Co. was basically the whole ball game in Virginia Trump was like oh really? That is just pathetic.

  42. 42
    laura says:

    @scav: what an honor, and what a fabulous list of selections!
    Shout out to my favorite Royal Society Member and rock God Brian May!

  43. 43
    Calouste says:

    @scav: Congrats to Tom! And 2500 pounds in the bag already just for making the shortlist. (The winner gets 25,000)

  44. 44
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    I watched a voter panel thing on CNN not long ago and their opinions about Trump v Clinton were entirely about personality rather than policy or substance. Everything was a detailed discussion of who you felt like you could trust, “well I just don’t know if I can trust her, though I’m not sure when he says X or Y that I can trust him either…”

    If there were two candidates with roughly the same policy proposals and plans for what direction to lead the country, then the question of which one you can trust to really do so would actually make sense. I don’t know what parallel Earth these people live on because that isn’t remotely the situation we have here on the one I know.

    “Well, Trump vows that he’ll nuke the planet and be incredibly racist and destructive and alienate our allies even more than he already has just by running — but can you really trust him to do what he says?” -Concerned Parallel Earth Voter

  45. 45
    nonynony says:

    @Trentrunner:

    Can we get some traction on Melanoma’s immigration status in the 90s? Seriously, this is a gut check test for our media. Will they pursue a story that would OBVIOUSLY have legs if on the other side?

    No we can’t – and here’s why:

    In order for this story to have traction, there needs to be someone pushing it. Democrats are not going to officially push this story for at least two reasons. The first is that it’s an immigration story, and it’s hard to make hay about a story like that when you have voters in your coalition who think that our immigration rules are too harsh and that the restrictions like the ones that Melania likely violated should be loosened. You end up making it a wedge issue in your own coalition rather than a stick to beat the other guy with. It’s very hard to craft a story out of this that only beats up on Trump’s hypocrisy without making it about our immigration laws as a whole.

    The second is that it can easily become beating up on the candidate’s wife, who is an attractive woman married to an asshole. Many people are already on the cusp of feeling sorry for her just based on her poor life choices and who she sleeps with. She’s not a politician, and is only a part of this race in the sense that she’s supporting her husband. If it becomes an attack on her, rather than an attack on Trump, then it becomes counterproductive – you’re punching the wrong person, and in fact you may be drawing sympathy for Trump in by proxy as he has to stand up and defend his wife. (This is why handling the plagiarism stuff was a bit fraught – you want to make sure that you’re bashing the campaign for handing her a plagiarized speech and not her for saying it. Even if she really did write some of it herself – and I have huge doubts about that story – you need to make it about the campaign and not her).

    All of this is difficult to do when you can’t control the narrative. Republicans have been very good at controlling narrative for the last 20 years because they have their own news network that presents their narrative the way they want it and the rest of the media has to/chooses to respond to their lead. Democrats don’t have that advantage – the press is going to take this story the direction they want to take it. If “Clinton is beating up on Melania” is the narrative they think gets them eyeballs, well, that’s the way the narrative is going to move.

    So Dems won’t be pushing this. At least not vocally. And so it won’t get pushed. Maybe some #nevertrumpers could take the lead on this and push it out there, but I don’t know if the press cares about them anymore.

    (I’m shocked that this wasn’t pushed by Republicans during the primary campaign. That’s where this story would have had real traction and they could have used it to take him down. Just another sign of their total lack of competence this cycle I guess.)

  46. 46
    Chip Daniels says:

    Trump’s message of personal grievance is the message of the GOP base.
    Its not a message of some vision of a better functioning economy or better America, its just a laundry list of bitterness against enemies, real and imagined.

    Welfare queens, immigrants, furriners…for the Trump voter, these are the people taunting them about the size of their hands and they are in a seething rage about it.

  47. 47
    AnotherBruce says:

    @Comrade Scrutinizer: I’m just waiting for some pundit to use the phrase “bag of salted dicks” or “ugly as a brown paper bag full of smashed assholes”. That would make my year!

  48. 48
    Amir Khalid says:

    @mkro:
    No, Mair is just calling Trump a dick with a loud mouth.

  49. 49
    BR says:

    @Trentrunner:

    You should suggest it to buzzfeed to investigate. They seem more willing.

  50. 50
    germy says:

    Well, he’s got the loudmouthed dick vote sewn up.

    I think his chances are good.

  51. 51
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @scav:

    Wow, amazing, awesome, how exciting, congratulations, well done!!!

    👏 🍾 👏 🍾 👏

    ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

  52. 52
    NorthLeft12 says:

    @AnotherBruce: Yes, me too. I usually never listen to videos at work, but I did not believe the transcript. I’m sure she can expect to receive a broadside from the SS Trumpf, but the one thing he can’t accuse her of is being politically correct. :)

  53. 53
    hovercraft says:

    @hilts:
    In their defense yesterday they did commit a couple of instances of journalism.
    1 When they challenged Ben Carson for going on to say the Khans owed Trump an apology for attacking him.
    2 Forcing his spox Katrina Pierson to admit that he charge that Obama and Clinton got Capt Khan killed was bullshit.
    But they may have met their quota for the month, we’ll have to wait and see.

  54. 54
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    @bystander: In the hive mind of the Republicans, “failing to work with Congress” translates as: “Not giving us everything we want.”

  55. 55
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @scav: WOOOHOOOO!

  56. 56
    Judge Crater says:

    Politics and politicians get a very bad rap these days. But, we need them precisely because of freelancers like Donald Trump. He’s an anti-politician is every respect of the term. He doesn’t know issues, he doesn’t have any sort of coherent program and he doesn’t observe any of the political norms that democracies depend on to maintain some level of civil behavior.

    He has no idea of what it takes to govern a country as complex as the U.S. He’s not a leader in any sense of the word. Besides being a dick, he’s a first-class fool. He’ll find some way to go Chapter 11 on his candidacy – and leave the GOP holding the bag.

  57. 57
    NorthLeft12 says:

    @germy: Yes, never underestimate how many loud mouthed dicks there are.

  58. 58
    germy says:

    @NorthLeft12:
    Campaign Manager: “Mrs. Clinton, you’ve got the non-loudmouthed dick vote sewn up.”
    HRC: “But I’ll need a majority.”

  59. 59
    1,000 Flouncing Lurkers (was fidelioscabinet) says:

    @rikyrah: The link in the nym goes straight to the site, so if you click on that in any of satby’s comments, you’ll go straight there.

    I mention this as satby may be a little busy getting ready to move just now…

  60. 60
    Jeffro says:

    @nonynony:

    So Dems won’t be pushing this. At least not vocally. And so it won’t get pushed. Maybe some #nevertrumpers could take the lead on this and push it out there, but I don’t know if the press cares about them anymore.

    I’m glad Dems won’t be pushing on Melania’s immigration status (although it will keep the media busy today, I’m sure) because…it doesn’t matter. Truly. It’s not like Trump supporters care – they don’t care about anything other than Trump’s ability to keep publicly saying the offensive things they wish they could say, but can’t.

  61. 61
    nonynony says:

    @NorthLeft12: Trump’s problem is that he’s restricting himself to only locking up the vote of white male loudmouth dicks. If he were more inclusive, he’d be doing better.

  62. 62
    The Dangerman says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    ….to relive the fights he won and how he won them

    I wish I had a crystal ball because losing is anathema to Brand Trump (and losing on the scale he is about to lose is unthinkable to BT); what happens between now and the end should be fascinating. Does he drop out? Does he scream rigged after an ass thumping? Does he litigate this somehow? Fuck; I’m out of popcorn.

  63. 63
    Shalimar says:

    @bystander:Rick Scott is following the Republican plan, Ebola 2.0. As always, Republicans in Congress voted for their own interests over the interests of their constituents and the nation. They want zika to be a huge panic in the month before the election, so they can blame Democrats for not being prepared. Evil narcissistic fuckers.

  64. 64
    trollhattan says:

    @mkro:
    I did a double-take. Republican masks are dropping across our fine nation.

  65. 65
    SFAW says:

    @AnotherBruce:

    “ugly as a brown paper bag full of smashed assholes”.

    Although that’s a wonderful phrase, it’s in competition with the description of John (the elder) Sununununununununu: “prolapsed pig rectum.”

  66. 66
    trollhattan says:

    @Shalimar:
    How in the love of all that is Florida Man did Skeletor get reelected?

  67. 67
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @rikyrah: Click on her name, it takes you to her Etsy site.

  68. 68
    SFAW says:

    @NorthLeft12:

    Yes, never underestimate how many loud mouthed dicks there are.

    What are you schmoes saying about me NOW? Sheesh.

  69. 69
    rikyrah says:

    @scav:

    Congrats to Tom L!

    Indeed!

    Congratulations!!

  70. 70
    Jeffro says:

    @Judge Crater:

    Politics and politicians get a very bad rap these days. But, we need them precisely because of freelancers like Donald Trump. He’s an anti-politician is every respect of the term. He doesn’t know issues, he doesn’t have any sort of coherent program and he doesn’t observe any of the political norms that democracies depend on to maintain some level of civil behavior.

    this is why, as I get older (I’m 46) I appreciate ‘the system’, ‘the establishment’, etc more and more. There’s always room for change, but as a Progressive, I find I’m becoming more and more small-c conservative. I want politicians with some sort of resume’. I want them with the usual skill set, and appreciate it when they have one or more of those skills in spades.

    He has no idea of what it takes to govern a country as complex as the U.S. He’s not a leader in any sense of the word. Besides being a dick, he’s a first-class fool. He’ll find some way to go Chapter 11 on his candidacy – and leave the GOP holding the bag.

    And this is the thing, right – Trump doesn’t, and never has, had the chops to run anything bigger than Podunk, VA pop 400 as a political leader. He can’t build a coalition because he can’t hold back his own interests/id/mouth in order to listen, even for a second, much less actually take positive action and/or compromise. He’s also dumb about everything other than what makes for ‘good’ (blech) reality TV.

    As I put it to my right-leaning brother LOOOONG ago: “How come no one on this ‘deep bench’ will point out, Trump can’t even follow through on his one plan for everything, ‘I’ll hire the best people’, when he doesn’t have the brains OR experience to even begin to know who the best people are?” I never got a good answer on that one…guess the GOP values other qualities more than brains & experience, hmm?

  71. 71
    low-tech cyclist says:

    @germy:

    Campaign Manager: “Mrs. Clinton, you’ve got the non-loudmouthed dick vote sewn up.”
    HRC: “But I’ll need a majority.”

    Fortunately for Hillary (and the rest of us), being a loudmouthed dick is mostly a guy thing. So she wins easily if all the people who aren’t loudmouthed dicks vote for her.

    And yeah, I know you’re riffing off the old Adlai Stevenson quote. But still.

  72. 72
    SFAW says:

    @trollhattan:

    How in the love of all that is Florida Man did Skeletor get reelected?

    1) Charlie Crist was the awesomest campaigner since Martha Coakley v. Scotty Brown. If only Shrummy had been there to help!
    2) Morons allowed to vote

  73. 73
    germy says:

    @SFAW: I remember when Leno said John Tower looked like Yoda with a bad haircut.

  74. 74
    Emma says:

    @scav: Congratulations, Mr. Levenson.
    And *sigh*. That article added a few more books to the reading list.

  75. 75
    hovercraft says:

    @MattF:
    Well today the media is lamenting that they can’t devote as much attention to what Trump would like to be talking about, the 400 million dollars secret unmarked bills in a secret unmarked plane that was sent to the ayatollahs. The united States being shaken down by those crafty Persians would normally make for a nice distraction. Unfortuntely for him his own problems are so juicy and the polls just keep rolling out that the media can only give glancing mentions of the Iran brouhaha.
    SAD!

  76. 76
    Calouste says:

    @laura: Story about Brian May, Ph.D:

    When he finally got his PhD in 2008 from Imperial College, 30-something years after he started, the graduation ceremony was in the Royal Albert Hall, which is a couple of streets from Imperial College. It is also a famous concert venue, and he decided to provide the entertainment at his own graduation ceremony. I doubt a lot of the other graduates complained.

  77. 77

    @nonynony: Hillary can kill with kindness on this issue. She could say see, even someone like Melania had trouble navigating our immigration bureaucracy. This is why we need comprehensive immigration reform not walls and moats.

  78. 78
    daverave says:

    Trump’s a classic sociopath. Until you actually have a personal experience with one, it is very hard to comprehend how they can beguile you into a situation where they are in control and how difficult it can be to escape said relationship.

    I was joint owner of a commercial property for several years with a sociopath. At first it was all sweetness and light. Yeah he was loud and occasionally obnoxious but he was quite successful in a myriad of businesses. Once we had purchased the building, things went south real quick and I began dreading dealing with him on a business level. Socially he was fine but there was always just one perspective on how to manage our property: his. He was constantly shooting us both in the foot.

    Fortunately, after 8 years of hell, he eventually found a bigger “mark” who bought my half of the building from me for a small financial loss. It was worth quite a bit more than what I sold it for but like the man said, “sometimes you gotta know when to fold ’em.” Best outcome I could have ever have hoped for.

  79. 79
    slag says:

    @germy: Exactly that. Not only does Trump not have “another message”, he has absolutely nothing going for him other than being a loudmouth know-nothing. It’s not just his brand, it’s his everything.

    Republicans need to ask themselves why on earth anyone would even consider Trump for president other than his flagrant, self-satisfied know-nothingness.

    That’s who he is, and that’s what his supporters want because it validates who they are.

  80. 80
    AnotherBruce says:

    @NorthLeft12: I like the way she paused before emphasizing the word “dick”.

  81. 81
    hovercraft says:

    @MattF:
    He already said there’s something wrong with them they cannot be right because like Bernie he is getting the biggliest hugest crowds and she is not so he is winning and she is losing.

  82. 82
    NorthLeft12 says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: This is probably my main concern [besides rampant militarism] with the general voting public in the US [and really in Canada too]. The unabashed ignorance of most of the population is very disturbing and can only lead to disaster in the long run.
    The lack of critical thinking, the complete gullibility, and the intractability of those same people to admit mistakes, and the lack of flexibility to correct them.

    Its a freaking mess people. It is people like the above who welcome a dictator with open arms.

  83. 83
    Schlemazel says:

    Add my congrats for Tom’s success.

  84. 84
    Felonius Monk says:

    the leaky SS Republican Party

    Sort of the 2016 political version of the SS Titanic. I’m rooting for the Icebergs.

  85. 85
    Shalimar says:

    @trollhattan: Florida gubernatorial elections are off-year, so that gave Scott a chance. He also relied on voters notoriously having short memories. All of the most evil shit Scott pulled was in his first year in office. Even most Republicans hated his guts and he would have lost by 50 points if the re-election had been that November. Then he coasted by on as little controversy as he could manage for 3 years and enough voters forgot why they hated him to give him a victory. Also, Democrats don’t really have popular statewide options at the moment so there wasn’t a strong candidate to run against him.

  86. 86
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jeffro:

    guess the GOP values other qualities more than brains & experience, hmm?

    Assholery and hate.

  87. 87
    qwerty42 says:

    @MattF: Trump will now complain about the ‘vicious laws of arithmetic’ that force percentages to add up to 100.
    Percentages are all rigged to add to 100. His percentages are yoooge, the biggest, but crooked Hillary and the media are saying it “has” to add up to 100%.
    I. could. not. resist.

  88. 88
  89. 89
    hovercraft says:

    @Amir Khalid:
    He’s that guy who was a jock, the big man on campus back in his high school days, but nothing he’s ever done since then has been a success, so all he has is to crow about is the fact that he was once a star way back when. I mean seriously who gives a crap that he beat 16 rethugs, some of them never really ran, Jim Gilmore was on Rachel a couple of times, but as I recall it he never campaigned in any state didn’t raise money, wasn’t even in the debates, and Pataki was never serious, if you go to the FEC website there are a ton of people running for many federal offices, even president, just because you declare your self a candidate doesn’t mean squat. What did Santorum do this year, was he ever a threat to anyone.

  90. 90
    James E Powell says:

    @MattF:

    What is there, besides BenghaziBenghazi and EmailEmail?

    Apparently it’s paying Iranians for hostages. One of the Republican flacks on CNN this morning admitted that there was nothing to it, that it was explained back in January, and that it was not payment for hostages, BUT he noted that the White House & HRC will have to be answering questions about it so it’s great!

    It’s like he sat there and say to CNN, “I’m not only going to lie right to your face and to your audience, you are going to allow Republican flacks to repeat that lie for the next 24 hours, you are not going to call it a lie, you are going to say ‘some Republicans say’ and ‘but the White House says’ and you and I both know that’s what you are going to do.”

    And then that’s what happens.

  91. 91
    D58826 says:

    @randy khan: The problem is that as crazy as Trump is, any other GoPPER would be, on policy issues, just as bad. They all want to turn what is left of the country over to the 1% and return to those golden yester years of the 1870’s.

  92. 92
    Kay says:

    Pennsylvania poll (Franklin & Marshall Col)
    Clinton 49%
    Trump 38%

    Egads. 11. And in Trump’s key state for white working class! :)

  93. 93
    tobie says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: I don’t know what happened to CNN but the station is now so in the tank for the GOP (and if not the GOP the Libertarians). Today they’re having wall to wall coverage on the Iran ransom money. Far be it from them to inform viewers about the history of the money, the various steps in the treaty negotiation process this past winter, the interests of the US in empowering the moderate elected leader as opposed to the supreme religious leader etc etc etc. When not talking about this, it’s about the trust deficit with HRC and an email scandal they treat as too complex to ever explain. We’re talking about three friggin emails out of over 20,000 which contained information that was not properly marked as classified in the first place. Dana Bash tells the story of a woman who stopped her in the supermarket and says she really would like to vote for HRC if HRC would just stop lying and there’s never an iota of awareness on the part of Bash or any other talking head on CNN on how they’ve contributed to this impression. Crazy-making stuff…and that’s not even getting into CNN putting Corey Lewandowski on the payroll!

  94. 94
    Eric U. says:

    a democratic politician couldn’t have survived a week like the one that Trump has had. Gore was the butt of jokes for far less. The press just started letting loose with whatever nonsense they wanted to make up. We’ll see if Trump gets that treatment or if discipline is restored.
    I was on a group bike ride last night, and the Trump jokes were coming fast and furious. So maybe the media bosses will not be able to control it even if they want to.

  95. 95
    Calouste says:

    @hovercraft:

    He’s that guy who was a jock, the big man on campus back in his high school days, but nothing he’s ever done since then has been a success, so all he has is to crow about is the fact that he was once a star way back when.

    That’s Al Bundy to a T.

  96. 96
    Amir Khalid says:

    @The Dangerman:
    Even now, there are Bernistas still bawling that the DNC rigged the primary “election” for Hillary, stealing what was “rightfully:” Bernie’s nomination. Bernie, who doesn’t support this absurd claim, is a rather better person than the most childish of his supporters; Trump, alas, is not a better person than the worst of his.

    As for November, I suspect Trump will be too proud to quit before election day no matter how badly he is polling. If he is very soundly beaten then, I suppose he’ll spend a few days being a very sore loser and then give it up. (probably with no concession speech.) If he can tell himself it was close, he might make noise until the Electoral College convenes to confirm Hillary’s win and shut him up.

  97. 97

    @Schlemazel Khan: I answered your question about the movie, My name is Khan in one of yesterday evening’s threads.

  98. 98
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Shalimar: Yep. It’s also important to note that Scott has never received even 50% of the vote. He won his first term with 48.87% of the vote and his second with 48.0%. Libertarian and Independent Party candidates screwed us both times — in addition to the FLDems running crappy candidates, of course, which is the main reason we lost.

  99. 99
    hovercraft says:

    @Calouste:
    And Donald Trump ever since he hit the general, apart from his huge bounce of 1.2 % after his convention, he’s had nothing to boast about, so it’s all about his primary hits all the time.

  100. 100
    chopper says:

    @dmsilev:

    checked the news feed this AM and it’s all about trump and the GOP shitting the bed. so far this is the best week ever.

  101. 101
    slag says:

    @Kay: That would be nice! And: New Poll Shows Dem Hassan Up 10 On Incumbent Ayotte In NH Senate Race. I know nothing about the track record of this poll, but if so…

  102. 102
    SFAW says:

    @germy:

    That was pretty edgy for Leno, I guess.

  103. 103
    Dadadadadadada says:

    There’s a book I just finished that I want to recommend to everyone. It’s called “Our Battle,” the subtitle is something like “Being One Man’s Answer to Hitler’s ‘My Battle'”. A famous Dutch-American journalist wrote it in 1938 as a kind of expose of and call to arms against European fascism. (It’s available on Amazon, I see. And it’s under 150 pages.)
    It’s fairly prescient about Hitler and co., but what really sticks out is how similar Hitler is to Trump, especially where their supporters are concerned. I think the thing that saves America from Trump is that his followers’ sense of grievance is much less well-founded than was that of Hitler’s fans. Germany had just lost a war, its economy had actually been devastated, etc. Trumpworld’s grievances are much less serious and much less recent, which is why Trump now is so much less popular than Hitler in 1932. Also, Hitler had some real political skill, which Trump absolutely lacks.
    But two things apply just as well to both: the inchoate rage and hate of their followers, and the craven selfishness of powers-that-be that stand back and wait to see how things turn out before falling into line behind the monster.

  104. 104
    satby says:

    @rikyrah: Yeah, I answered late, link is my nym here. Click on my name ;)

  105. 105
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @The Other Bob:

    They essentially want Trump to lie about himself so they can rebrand him as something other than the fascist he is.

    That’s an impossible task though since Trump cannot keep his mouth shut for one minute or keep his small hands off the Tweeter machine. Unfortunately for Republicans, Trump is not an actor and doesn’t think he needs to change anything to win in November so he won’t go along with their attempt to rebrand him.

    As Betty pointed out in her brilliant drawing yesterday, Trump’s pivot is a 360 degree turn, i.e., no change. Works for me.

  106. 106
    satby says:

    @1,000 Flouncing Lurkers (was fidelioscabinet): Thanks! I pop in and out, whenever I need a break from boxes and dust. Damn, the country is dusty!

  107. 107
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @daverave:

    Until you actually have a personal experience with one, it is very hard to comprehend how they can beguile you into a situation where they are in control and how difficult it can be to escape said relationship.

    I married one. Truer words have never been spoken.

  108. 108
    Schlemazel says:

    @D58826:
    Small correction: 1850s. Pre-Civil War

  109. 109
    chopper says:

    @nonynony:

    given the news making the rounds this week (rumors of a so-called ‘intervention’), i imagine the nevertrump people still have a bit of mojo left.

  110. 110
    Chris says:

    @Barbara:

    What most Republicans like Ryan seem to have missed is that Trump not only does not want to pivot, and does not think he has to, but that he probably can’t pivot. As in, he does not have the normal political skills of adapting a message or style to the audience in front of him.

    And as in, his base probably won’t even let him at this point. You know the minority of Berniebros who’ve taken his endorsement of Hillary as proof that he’s a sellout? Most of the GOP base is made up of these people.

  111. 111
    Schlemazel says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:
    Yes, thanks(sorry thought I had said that in thread). I have not been able to get the movie yet. Very different looking than what I have seen in Indian cinema. It appears to take place in the US and the lead is seriously autistic. I hope it is subtitled because the snippets of dialog in the videos looked important but I couldn’t follow.

  112. 112
    Joyce H says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    As for November, I suspect Trump will be too proud to quit before election day no matter how badly he is polling.

    I do too. But don’t neglect the possibility of the convenient ‘health crisis’. You think the doctor who certified Trump’s health doesn’t sound like a dude who would diagnose whatever his mega-wealthy patient wanted diagnosed?

    I think it’s a distinct possibility that if the polls continue going south and Trump continues to be an object of near-universal derision and campaigning is so much more work than he ever imagined and people keep asking him hard questions that he doesn’t know the answer to, nothing could be easier than to keel over with chest pains and have Doctor Friendly diagnose a heart attack and prescribe strict bed rest and no exertion. Within a year, or even much sooner, Trump will have convinced himself that he really did have to withdraw for health reasons, and if not for that, he definitely would have won and been the greatest president ever.

  113. 113
    Chris says:

    @Wapiti:

    What a sad existence it must be for some segment of the the Republican voters, when their lives are such that their hopes and goals are simply to be lorded over by a loud mouthed jerk.

    The sight of various poor to middle class Republicans I’ve read or seen since 2008 begging the Captains of Industry to go galt and crash society and punish all the unworthy parasites – even knowing full well that they’d be right in the middle of that hypothetical apocalypse – has given me some idea of why words like “scab” and “house n*gg*r” rose so high in the pantheon of insults.

  114. 114
    Schlemazel says:

    @Dadadadadadada:
    The other thing that helps us here is that we don’t have a parliamentary system so Trump can’t form a coalition government to subvert. He needs to win many whole states.

    I go back and forth on if the founders did us a favor there but in this case it is a very good thing

  115. 115
    chopper says:

    @Joyce H:

    But don’t neglect the possibility of the convenient ‘health crisis’

    OW MY HEEL SPURS!!

  116. 116
    James E Powell says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    in addition to the FLDems running crappy candidates,

    That’s the impression one gets from the out here on the West Coast. It is a puzzle why the D’s candidates are so meh.

  117. 117
    Elie says:

    Congrats Tom! Impressive what you do in your spare time!

  118. 118
    Brachiator says:

    @Chris:

    . . What most Republicans like Ryan seem to have missed is that Trump not only does not want to pivot, and does not think he has to, but that he probably can’t pivot. As in, he does not have the normal political skills of adapting a message or style to the audience in front of him.

    Trump is doing fine. For Trump. He should just keep on the campaign trail, and show large, enthusiastic crowds to the people.

    The most I hear any of his supporters saying is that he should just tone it down. But they still love that he is a plain speaking straight shooter.

    I also can’t see that any of his supporters care about a pivot. This kind of thing is just part of the empty headed conventional thinking of lazy political reporting. Trump’s success is based on not doing what traditional politicians do. He has no reason to change up.

    Besides, I’m enjoying the slow self destruction.

  119. 119
    Kay says:

    Melania is denying she ever violated immigration law. I believe her until someone shows something, but then I believed the President when he said his birth certificate was authentic.

  120. 120
    mr_gravity says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism: I must respectfully disagree. The Titanic went down. The iceberg didn’t.

  121. 121
    shortstop says:

    You want an intervention? How about this one?

    Our job as Democrats is to make these people own this shit to their graves and beyond.

  122. 122
    Chris says:

    @Eric U.:

    a democratic politician couldn’t have survived a week like the one that Trump has had.

    Didn’t we have a guy resign over a dick pic a few years back? A goddamn dick pic.

  123. 123
    AnderJ says:

    In re Melania Trump, wanna bet HRC will issue a press release that Melania is off limits, but that the campaign should be about Trump’s offensive views about immigrants, veterans, women etc. this way she’d fuel the Melania story while also distancing herself from it.

  124. 124
    redshirt says:

    @Calouste: Brian May is the bomb! He helped organize an astronomy convention called “Starmas” which features a mix of scientists, astronauts, and musicians, held on the Canary Islands. I SOOOOOOO want to attend but it’s very $$$$.

    Any fans of May’s scientific background should subscribe to Astronomy magazine. It’s great, and he sometimes writes an article.

  125. 125
    shortstop says:

    @Kay: Politico says she artfully avoided answering some of their specific charges, like about the work she apparently did here in 1995.

    I really don’t think Clinton or other Democrats need to push this issue at all. Trump will blow a gasket and keep it in the news cycle for at least a week.

  126. 126
    Joyce H says:

    @chopper:

    OW MY HEEL SPURS!!

    Oh, it will be something more dramatic than that, now that he’s a Big Important Man. A heart attack at least, or something life-threatening.

    But I thought it was interesting that when he gave that interview the other day to the Post, he had the television on and kept being distracted by what was being said about him. Apparently he watched television constantly, ONLY about himself. And lately, that can’t be much fun for him. You gotta think he’s wishing there was a way out.

  127. 127
    Chris says:

    @Dadadadadadada:

    Also, as awful, awful, awful, awful, awful, awful, awful, awful a human being as Adolf Hitler was, at least he didn’t get five deferments to dodge the draft.

    (Granted, maybe if he’d been born with a silver spoon in his mouth like Donnie, he might have).

  128. 128
    one_particular_harbour, fka Botsplainer says:

    @James E Powell:

    Conservadems – we need them, but their campaign messages suck.

    Take Evan Bayh – his commercial touts him as a tax cutting, bureaucracy crushing fiscal conservative family man outsider to Washington, who will bring needed “Hoosier Values” to DC.

    Might as well vote for Mike Pence, under that set of rubrics. Thing is, in Indiana, that plays.

  129. 129
    Gin & Tonic says:

    So now it appears that Il Donaldo is attempting to keep the Iran cash story in the news by lying blatantly about it. He says he saw secret video of the pallets of cash being unloaded, filmed by Iranian military.

    No such video exists, of course.

    It truly must be a diagnosable condition that causes one to lie about *everything*, even things which can be so easily disproved.

  130. 130
    Kay says:

    @Joyce H:

    I don’t think he’ll do it because his health is tied in with his giant ego. His doctor’s statement was ridiculous “healthiest person ever!” That’s what all the “low energy” stuff was about too.

    He thinks illness is weakness. Even if it were true he’d never admit it.

    He needs to figure out a way where he can blame someone else for his getting out. It can’t be him. He could use his family “the vicious attacks on my family by rigged media make it impossible”.

  131. 131
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Kay: As others have pointed out, many, many people inadvertently or unknowingly violate US immigration law.

  132. 132
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @AnderJ: Agreed. Melania’s immigration status is irrelevant to whether or not her husband is qualified to be President so she should be off limits. As FLOTUS said in her DNC speech, when the other side goes low, we go high.

  133. 133
    catclub says:

    @Joyce H: Jamelle Bouie at Slate points out that Trump would be the most loserly loser ever for doing this.
    Quitting in the middle of the race has NEVER happened. All of us will make sure to yell this loudly so that he stays in just to show us.

  134. 134
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Gin & Tonic: As usual, Trump took a story which probably is not great for Secretary Clinton, and overly reaches to the point where his lying/stretching of the truth becomes the issue. He’s the perfect opponent.

  135. 135
    Brachiator says:

    @AnderJ:

    . .this way she’d fuel the Melania story while also distancing herself from it.

    You’re going to beat up on an immigrant while claiming to care about immigrants? You’re going to bash a woman while claiming to care about women? You’re going to slime a spouse who seems to have been reluctantly drawn into Trump’s who romp?

    Just say no.

  136. 136
    catclub says:

    @AnderJ: Yes. ” i don’t think whether Melania Trump worked illegally in the US on a tourist visa is anything of interest to my campaign. It should not even be mentioned.

  137. 137
    Poopyman says:

    Well, bad as CNN is, right now their website’s headline in big screaming type is

    GOP Civil War

    … so we’ve got that goin’ for us.

  138. 138
    Technocrat says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    It’s amazing. By lying about it, he turns the story from “Ransom Payment!” to “Trump Lies About Ransom Payment!”.

    HRC should start using his narcissism as an impermeable media shield. She could rob a bank, and Trump would go on air to talk about that time HE robbed TWO banks.

  139. 139
    shortstop says:

    @Brachiator: I’m with you on #1 and sort of on #3, but I gotta call #2 out of bounds. “Caring about women” doesn’t mean never criticizing us, particularly when the topic being discussed is irrelevant to her being a woman. If this issue (or her plagiarized speech) were specifically related to her gender or to legislation or public policy specifically affecting women, you’d have a point.

  140. 140
    Kay says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Oh, sure. It’s just that other people generally recognize there’s some risk to throwing stones. This is the downside of taking that risk. She had choices. She chose to give interviews and contrast her rigorous compliance with the rules compared to “the other”. It’s fair game. She opened the door- herself- in her own words and in a voluntary interview.

    I don’t care what people do with their personal lives but when conservatives strut around crowing they own family values they open that door, too. There has to be some real risk when people cast aspersions on others- that’s the price of the tactic.

  141. 141
    randy khan says:

    @Emma:

    I don’t think there’s anything the GOP or the MSM can do to “fix” Trump. What I’m saying is that they’re left hoping that one of his random attacks will hit home and change the election. That’s not very likely (to say the least) and the Clinton campaign has shown no signs of Dukakis-it is (the congenital inability to respond to attacks), but it’s all they’ve got.

    @D58826:

    True enough. At this point, I don’t want the GOP to replace him with someone who might seem sort of reasonable to the general population because he’s smart enough to hide the crazy.

  142. 142
    Dadadadadadada says:

    @Chris: The book makes the point that what really drives Hitler is his sense that the deck has always been stacked against him. It’s hard to see where Trump would get such a sense (being the son of the manor that he is), but he certainly has it. Maybe his parents were inattentive/abusive/successful beyond Don’s ability to compete?

  143. 143
    shortstop says:

    @catclub: Agreed. He’s not quitting. He’ll lose and then call for his rube brigade to start a civil war out of spite.

  144. 144
    Brachiator says:

    @shortstop: Any attack on Melania is because she is Trump’s wife, and using the attack to get under his skin. If she were political or more actively involved in his campaign, that might be one thing. But she’s not.

    The speech issue was fair game, and few reporters piled on.

  145. 145
    one_particular_harbour, fka Botsplainer says:

    @catclub:

    “I think that Melania Trump’s undoubtedly frustrating experience in navigating a needlessly complex immigration system illustrates my pint that our immigration laws and quotas are broken, and demonstrates why we need major reform with an eye to the compassionate values that America is known for.”

  146. 146
    Schlemazel says:

    @Chris:
    Hitler was a combat vet with medals for valor. In that one tiny slice of lufe he is better than Trump because he didn’t avoid what he sent Germany’s kids to do.

    Still selecting pineapples in hell though.

  147. 147
    Trentrunner says:

    Melania’s immigration status is 100% fair game.

    What if Bill Clinton were running a business where he paid women 20% less than men for the same jobs?

    Would that be fair game?

    Immigration is the fucking centerpiece of Trump’s campaign. His wife’s immigration status in the 1990s is questionable.

    It is absolutely fair game.

    Plus, these Trump fuckers lie about or steal everything. ‘Bout time they got caught.

  148. 148
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Brachiator: Yeah, but M. Trump voluntarily gave interviews about how scrupulously she complied with immigration laws, contrasting her behavior to the people her husband wants to round up and deport when in truth it appears to have been the same. I don’t think the Clinton campaign should call her out because of possible blow-back, but questioning whether MT violated immigration laws is 100% fair game since she brought it up herself.

  149. 149
    D58826 says:

    @Kay: Very true. but there is something rather enjoyable about watching some one being hoist on his own petard.

  150. 150
    Soylent Green says:

    All Trump ever wanted was to be a giant TV star, and figured that as president every camera in the world would be on him every day.

    When this is over, I’m sure he will try to turn his global fame into some new starring role. Thankfully it won’t be in public office. Trumpism won’t win, but it will keep him in the money.

  151. 151
    jc says:

    “… the Republican nominee acting as if he’s on a suicide mission and aiming to take down the whole rest of the party with him.”

    You say that like it’s a bad thing.

  152. 152
    Mnemosyne says:

    @rikyrah:

    She’s on Etsy as Skinluvvers. I bought some beard oil for G and he promptly shaved his beard before he even tried it. 😆

  153. 153
    D58826 says:

    @randy khan: Yep. I want to see the gop go down in flames. But I’m just not really confident that it will come back as a more moderate center right party. The state level bench they would draw from is all pretty crazy. The guy who beat the tea partier in Kansas has pretty much the same views except he will vote for AG subsidies to farmers.

  154. 154
    catclub says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    but the questioning whether MT violated immigration laws is 100% fair game since she brought it up herself.

    I think the poster up above who said Clinton not mentioning it would make the press more interested, is right.

  155. 155
    redshirt says:

    Trump is in Portland Maine today for some god known reason, and I have a strong feeling his audience is going to be at least half hecklers.

    I hope we get a moment that makes the news!

  156. 156
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @redshirt: Why aren’t you there heckling?

  157. 157
    Kay says:

    Sasha Obama, who has lived eight of her 15 years in the luxurious confines of the White House, is learning how the other half lives this summer. The First Daughter is working the takeout window at Nancy’s, a seafood restaurant on Martha’s Vineyard.
    Sasha, who’s using her full name of Natasha at Nancy’s, has been learning the ropes of the service industry at the Oak Bluffs eatery this week, working a cash register, busing tables and prepping the restaurant before it opens for lunch.
    “She’s been working downstairs at takeout,” said a server at the busy island eatery. “We were wondering why there were six people helping this girl, but then we found out who it was.”
    Sasha was accompanied to her summer job yesterday by a contingent of six Secret Service agents, who sat outside the restaurant in a large Suburban SUV and on the takeout benches while the president’s daughter waited on hungry tourists. When her shift ended, Sasha and a friend, who also was wearing the navy blue Nancy’s T-shirt and baseball cap, brought a tray of drinks out to her security contingent, got in the SUV and took off.

    I think that’s kind of amazing.

  158. 158
    TOP123 says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: This P. O’Brian fan thanks you. :)

  159. 159
    redshirt says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I have my first day off in a month and I’m certainly not making that 3 hour round trip today. I’m confident my views will be well represented.

  160. 160
    Enhanced Voting Techinques says:

    So that will be the Trump and GOP battle cry after November 11th- stabbed in the back by the Libertarians like in ’92 and not the canidate and the party sucked?

  161. 161
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @slag: FiveThirtyEight gives MassINC an A- with a very slight R bias, for whatever that’s worth.

  162. 162
    Tripod says:

    @hovercraft:

    Loudoun has a high percentage of export GDP compared to the rest of the Metro. Maybe don could tone down the tarriff war stuff…

  163. 163
    Barbara says:

    @hovercraft: Okay, Loudoun is NOT the whole ballgame — Chuckles is an idiot. The ballgame for Republicans in Virginia has become incredibly narrow, but it requires running the tables in red counties and keeping it just close enough in Northern Virginia, but especially Fairfax, which is, all by itself, 25% of the voting population. Losing Fairfax by large margins makes it almost impossible to win statewide. (If you are losing Fairfax by large margins it means you are losing Arlington, Alexandria, Charlottesville, Norfolk and Richmond by even larger margins.) Loudoun is trending blue but still looks more like the state as a whole than the rest of Northern Virginia.

  164. 164
    Barbara says:

    @slag: If so, it would so serve Kelly Ayotte right. I have learned one thing in my long life of being a political observer and it is that nobody likes a politician who puts their finger to the wind. Ayotte’s position on Trump is indefensibly self-serving.

  165. 165

    @shortstop:
    They won’t, thankfully. They have had their rallying cry for revolution many times, but ‘chickenshit’ is written as deeply into the modern conservative movement as ‘bully.’ Trump is truly their man.

  166. 166
    glory b says:

    @Trentrunner: Haven’t looked at the rest of this thread, but gawker has a post up today about just that.

    Seems a little fishy because she has mentioned in interviews about going home every few months to get her visa stamped, which would seem to indicate that she didn’t have a work visa, which I think they said was good for three years.

    Nicer people than us in their comment thread said looking into it would be mean, since she’s here legally now, etc.

  167. 167
    Enhanced Voting Techinques says:

    @Trentrunner: There you go using logic in this; Right or Left, anyone sane isn’t voting for Trump, see Johnson’s polling numbers. That leaves the Lizard brains so an Immigrant is ether EVIL, as in has the incorrect skin color or religion or GOOD as in comes from the correct parts of Europe. Trump could have resorted to mass bribery and smuggled his wife in in cargo container and she would still be good in their eyes, the same way Obama grandfather is a US WWII vet and Obama is still an illegal alien.

    And speaking of Melanie Trump, since when have Croats been tall and willowy and not round and applefaced? Something is fishy there,…

  168. 168
    Joyce H says:

    @glory b:

    Nicer people than us in their comment thread said looking into it would be mean, since she’s here legally now, etc.

    I used to be nice. But that was before our opponents turned into people who would investigate the White House Christmas card list and the president’s daughter’s cat’s fan club.

  169. 169
    Brachiator says:

    @Betty Cracker: I could see making it an issue only if Melania had made anti immigrant statements.

  170. 170
    gogol's wife says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techinques:

    She’s Slovenian. But there really isn’t a single body type for any ethnicity.

  171. 171
    Kay says:

    I’ve been having trouble explaining to my husband and sons why I like these pictures of Clinton at work so much- she looks like a normal working woman about midway thru an 18 hour day. It really is different seeing this person as “President”.

  172. 172
    Kay says:

    @Joyce H:

    Bloomberg has an editorial where they say she should respond specifically because there were demands for Obama’s birth certificate and education records. I agree with them. That seems fair to me.

  173. 173
    Dadadadadadada says:

    @redshirt: He’s in Maine b/c Maine splits its EVs proportionally, so a good loss there picks up an EV or 2 over a bad loss. Meanwhile, Clinton’s in Nevada, a state that’s actually in play. As ever, Trump is entirely mis-focused.

  174. 174
    Kenneth Kohl says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: Bill, and that astounds me, because;
    – the right wing attacks HRC on her “untruthiness” while DJT can’t tell a truth if his campaign depended on it.
    -DJT labels HRC as “crooked” (so of course his minions are all over that, while DJT’s business, if not personal model is cheat, short-pay and ‘bankrupt.

    But, yeah, Both Sides… jesusjumpingchrist!

  175. 175
    Brachiator says:

    @Kay:

    Bloomberg has an editorial where they say she should respond specifically because there were demands for Obama’s birth certificate and education records. I agree with them. That seems fair to me.

    Did Melania Trump demand to see Obama’s birth certificate?

  176. 176
    Kenneth Kohl says:

    @nonynony: Nonynony, you’re right, no need to push this at all. Mrs Trump 3.0 is irrelevant to this election. No need to waste time/energy on it.

  177. 177
    redshirt says:

    @Dadadadadadada: That might be the Trump campaign’s thinking, but, he can only score a potential 1 electoral vote, and Portland is not in the district that can give him that vote. Portland in fact is the capital of Maine’s liberalism and he will find a very hostile crowd.

    It makes no sense.

    He was in Bangor many weeks ago, which makes more sense since it is in the second district and might vote his way (but won’t).

    I don’t even know how to process this.

  178. 178
    Miss Bianca says:

    @TOP123: Heh. That’s funny, I was thinking of POB as well when I read this!

  179. 179
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Poopyman: So is he mirror universe Cap or mirror universe Iron Man?

    Yes, I know I’m mixing my tropes – just go with it.

  180. 180
    shortstop says:

    @Brachiator: Well, but you didn’t originally say we should lay off candidates’ spouses, did you? You said, “You’re going to bash a woman while claiming to care about women?” Surely you can see that these are two vastly different arguments?

    As for her not being active in campaigning, she’s been active to the extent of choosing to give multiple interviews in which she claimed she stringently followed all US immigration law. Since she put herself out there to say those things (just as she put herself out there to give a speech you feel is fairly open to public review), that certainly opens her to valid criticism if it turns out she was lying.

  181. 181
    Kay says:

    @Brachiator:

    Yeah, she did:

    BEHAR: But what is this with the birth certificate obsession? Did he ask to see yours when you met him?”
    MELANIA: Well, I needed to put mine anyway because if you want to become an American citizen you need to put the birth certificate. I have a birth certificate from Slovenia, and do you want to see President Obama birth certificate or not?
    BEHAR: I’ve seen it.
    MELANIA: It’s not a birth certificate.
    BEHAR: Well, it’s a certificate of live birth, which they give. But, Melania, if he insists on what he’s saying, then no one in Hawaii can ever run for President. Because they all get the same live-birth certificate.
    MELANIA: Well, but they need to have—
    BEHAR: Bette Midler is finished, for example!
    MELANIA: They need to have, and, in one way, it would be very easy if President Obama just show it. It’s not only Donald who wants to see it. It’s American people, who voted for him, and who didn’t voted for him, they want to see that!

    The fact is she gives these interviews willingly. If you live in a glass house don’t throw stones or accept the consequences. I don’t think it’s SMART for Democrats to seize on it but “smart” is different than “fair”.

  182. 182
    Kay says:

    @Brachiator:

    “I came here for my career, and I did so well, I moved here,” she told Harper’s Bazaar. “It never crossed my mind to stay here without papers. That is just the person you are. You follow the rules. You follow the law. Every few months you need to fly back to Europe and stamp your visa.”

  183. 183
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Kay: This quote turns her into fair game, in my opinion. However, I trust Sec. Clinton to make the right call.

  184. 184
    Peale says:

    @Kay: Yep. I don’t mean to dwell on it, like make it a 10 day issue (although I’m sure he’ll tweet about it). But put it out there. Because TBH, my guess is that he’ll throw her under the bus. Even if he does nothing, its kind of a win. (Donald Trump will spend ten days harassing a Gold Star Family, but won’t defend his own wife).

  185. 185
    shortstop says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: Oh, they couldn’t organize a two-car parade. But I admit I’m a bit concerned about lots of them getting liquored up alone or in small groups and firebombing mosques, taking (actual, not figurative) shots at random dusky-hued passersby, etc.

  186. 186
    hovercraft says:

    I posted this in this mornings open thread:

    hovercraft says:
    August 4, 2016 at 10:00 am
    Old media question: why isn’t Hillary leading by double digits? Um, she’s up by 10 in new Fox poll and sailing in the states. New media question: why isn’t Hillary leading by 35?

    So what is Chris Mr Fix Cilliza have to say, yes she got a nice bump, but given his last six days, why isn’t she up by 25.
    Le sigh.
    SAD ! They are so predictable.

  187. 187

    @Schlemazel: Hindi cinema has really come of age in the last 10 years. There are many more interesting movies being made that are more than just formula masala movies.

  188. 188
    hovercraft says:

    Aww, Donald’s campaign is hurting business.

    Donald Trump’s increasingly polarized run for the presidency has had a clear, negative effect on the businesses in Trump’s namesake empire, according to data published Thursday by the location-tracking technology company Foursquare.

    Based on looking at users’ location data in the aggregate, Foursquare found that foot traffic to Trump hotels, golf courses and casinos is down since he announced his candidacy, particularly among women in blue states.

    The big data tells an interesting story. Before Trump launched his campaign, infamously calling some Mexicans “rapists,” in June 2015, Foursquare data shows foot traffic had been steady year-over-year and potentially saw an uptick.

    But after he became Trump the presidential candidate, Foursquare found his properties didn’t see their usual seasonal boost and, by August 2015, the share of people hoofing it to all Trump properties was down 17 percent from the same period in 2014. After stabilizing to single-digit losses, the start of primary season primetime in March 2016 saw a 17 percent drop in share of people at Trump properties.

    The picture is more dire in the breakdown of foot traffic to Trump properties in traditionally red vs. blue states, bearing in mind that Trump properties are located mostly in blue states and rely on guests who live in the region, according to Foursquare. Across Trump locations in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and Hawaii, foot traffic started to take a hit in March 2016, with the year-on-year share losses widening to 20 percent in July.

    The losses were even worse among women, whose visits sustained double-digit losses. In blue states, Foursquare found visits from women to Trump properties were down 29 percent in July.

    Foursquare, which operates an app of the same name, offers users suggestions for entertainment, dining and other attractions based on their location and preferences. By analyzing that data, which the company says is anonymized and only viewed in the aggregate, Foursquare has had success predicting broader trends, like hit sales for the launch of McDonald’s all-day breakfast.

    According to the company’s Medium post, they draw data from more than 50 million monthly global users across Foursquare, its companion app, Swarm, and its websites. The company compared visits to Trump properties with visits to competitors in the area to analyze changes in market share. Foursquare also said it compared the market share numbers to absolute visits in order to rule out the possibility that its data was skewed by a sudden boost in foot traffic to Trump’s competitors for unrelated reasons – but the downward trend still held. You can read more about the methodology over at Medium.

  189. 189
    Brachiator says:

    @Kay:

    Yeah, she did

    I stand, or actually sit, corrected.

    Too bad she went birther. This greatly diminishes, but does not entirely eliminate my sympathy.

    As another poster noted, I don’t think it smart to go after her hard.

  190. 190
    catclub says:

    How can you tell a GOP politician is telling the truth? Wait till they are no longer in office or no longer seeking office.

    Former Sen. Gordon Humphrey (R-N.H.) said he’s considering voting for Hillary Clinton over “sociopath” Donald Trump.

    Humphrey, who served in Congress from the ‘70s to 1990, told NBC News he is confident that Trump has major psychological issues, and said that the prospect of Trump becoming the commander in chief is “frightening.”
    “I am ever more confirmed in my belief that Trump is a sociopath, without a conscience or feelings of guilt, shame or remorse. And he is pathologically insecure, recklessly attacking anyone who does not confirm him as the best there is,” he wrote in an email to the news network.

    “To imagine Trump in charge of our armed forces at a moment of crisis is frightening,” Humphrey added.

    It’s not the first time he’s leveled the accusation at the GOP nominee, telling the New Hampshire Union Leader in May, “Unequivocally, I am not supporting Donald Trump. I think he’s a sociopath.”

    But on Thursday, he said he may vote for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton; he supported Ohio Gov. John Kasich in the Republican primary.

    “I would only vote for Hillary in the event of a very close contest,” Humphrey said.

    “Meantime, I’m hoping the Republican leadership, at long, long last will show the courage and principal to denounce Trump and to demand he renounce the nomination or face a reconvening of the convention.”

  191. 191
    Comrade Scrutinizer says:

    @Brachiator:

    As another poster noted, I don’t think it smart to go after her hard.

    Anything to take the focus off the yam, and possibly generate sympathy for him because his wife was “viciously attacked” should be avoided like the plague. That’ll just lead to more Judi Collins, and in the middle of it all:
    “Why you heff to be mad?” – Melania Trump

  192. 192
    Dadadadadadada says:

    @redshirt: If he’s thinking EVs at all, he would have to be thinking that a good showing in Maine can win him that extra EV. I guess he thinks the election will be so close that 1 EV is worth his time.

    Or…it could be that he has no clue about EVs or anything, and he or someone on his staff just said “Hey, let’s go to Maine!”
    Or the Russians really want some up-to-date ground-level pics of Loring AFB, and so Manafort is using this campaign trip as cover for that spy mission. With Trump, you really can’t ever tell.

  193. 193
    gogol's wife says:

    @Kay:

    You’re absolutely right.

  194. 194
    D58826 says:

    MSNBC talking about Pa. polls. Hillary leads statewide by 10 but in the 4 suburban Phila. counties he is losing by +40. Those counties give 1 in 5 votes from Pa. They didn’t even mention Philly. In the center part of the state Trump is outperforming Romney but then central Pa. is Alabama north.

  195. 195
    Brachiator says:

    I’ve got no use for Republican strategist Liz Mair, who has shilled for odious candidates such as Rand Paul, Rick Perry and Scott Walker. But damned if she doesn’t have Trump’s number

    The conservative apologists are scrambling hard to salvage this mess. I listened to a local talk show host make a big deal about Mair calling Trump a dick, and going on and on about how if someone said anything similar about Clinton on Fox News, all hell would break loose.

    But the talk show host went overboard to declare that he knew nothing about Mair. Just no idea. Then he did everything he could to imply that she was a “cross eyed, thick necked” liberal lesbian Democratic Party surrogate who obviously was defending her girl Hillary.

  196. 196
    Chris says:

    @Dadadadadadada:

    You don’t need to actually have the deck stacked against you to feel like the deck is stacked against you. Our 1%ers are one of the best cases in point. Barring a few despots like Kim Jong Eun, they’re probably the most pampered and privileged class of people on the face of the planet. They still manage to feel like second class citizens, oppressed by the government and terrorized by the unions and cheated by an unworthy public. And because they vent about it to each other all the time, and pay news pundits and think tanks to tell them all about how true it is, you’ve got a constantly reinforcing mechanism telling them it’s true.

  197. 197
    NickM says:

    @Peale: It seems to me Melania’s immigration history is fair game as she’s raised Obama’s birth certificate and pointed to herself as the example of the way immigrants should go about immigrating. It also shows that the “anti-immigrant” sentiment isn’t really anti-immigration at all, but anti-brown-skinned people, immigrant or not.

    Moreover, just about the only way the campaign has tried to humanize Trump’s awfulness is by having his family vouch for him. He may look like an asshole, they say, but in real life he’s kind, generous, a good father and husband, etc. This is incredible, but some people buy it enough to quell their consciences. Undermining the credibility of people who are lying to humanize Trump undermines this narrative.

    Finally, and relatedly, Trump’s kids and Melania KNOW Trump is a sociopath and would make an awful president. They know there’s nothing more behind the curtain than a small egotistical blowhard bully. And yet they’re lying to inflict this asshole on all of us — on all the world — and to get his tiny hands on the nuclear briefcase. They certainly calculate that having a President for a father/husband means a huge bump up in status for the rest of their lives. They’re lying to help him win, for their own gain, and with no concern for what happens to the rest of the world. Even if they never shot endangered species, they can fuck themselves, and their personal lives are fair game — at least as it reflects on their credibility.

  198. 198
    scav says:

    McCain’s marrying Joe the Plumber (in that overworked time machine!) doesn’t make Joe out of bounds.

  199. 199
    Central Planning says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    questioning whether MT violated immigration laws is 100% fair game

    “I am not a crook” -Melania Trump

    Anyway, I think the message should be something like “We sympathize with Melania and want to fix immigration in this country. Donald Trump would want to throw his wife out. What kind of man would do that?”

  200. 200
    PAM Dirac says:

    @Kay: Some years after we graduated, a high school friend went back to our old school to teach. Dan Qualye’s son was a freshman, and had his Secret Service detail following him around to classes. In the first week one of Quayle’s teachers got mad at the whole class and gave everyone detention, so after school Qualye, Secret Service agents and all served detention.

  201. 201
    J R in WV says:

    @redshirt:

    I heard a bunch of people stood up silently, and pulled out copies of the constitution and held them up.

    Trump had them all thrown out, for being so silent.

    What a flaming asshole!! He once lit a fart, and it has never gone out! and the pain has made him what he is today.

  202. 202
    Joel says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: The republican ship would be the Vasa in this analogy.

  203. 203
    DissidentFish says:

    @hovercraft: Ah, but Trump has 0% chance of winning Loudoun County — and none of the republican candidates this year had much of shot at it. Rubio, perhaps. Trump’s only play in Virginia is to run up the score in the parts of the state where white resentment and an aging population make him “attractive” (in an odd sense of that word). That is going win him West Virginia, right next door. But in Virginia, there just are not enough actual people live in those parts of the state to put together a win. I’d say Trump should focus elsewhere, but honestly, going to places is most likely to cost him votes in those places he visits, not gain. He might consider campaigning in Texas and Mississippi.

    Because yes he could lose both of those states.

  204. 204
    jonas says:

    @Wapiti:

    their hopes and goals are simply to be lorded over by a loud mouthed jerk.

    Oh, to be sure, *they’re* not the ones that they think will be lorded over — their dream is that Trump will put all the liberals, illegals, welfare queens, elites, and trade agreement negotiators that have somehow — they’re not sure how but definitely — ruined America in their place. That’s their well thought-out plan.

  205. 205
    jonas says:

    @DissidentFish: He seems to be hitting places where his campaign somehow thinks he can draw a big enough (and friendly-enough) crowd to fill a gym or local community center. It seems completely detached from reality. He still thinks he’s in the primary or something. (A notion confirmed by his pick of Pence, which seemed calculated to appeal to…Cruz voters, or something?)

Comments are closed.