Never Let Your Opponent Set The Terms Of Debate

Last night, I told a friend that Elizabeth Warren’s DNA test was a strategic mistake. I haven’t wanted to say much about it, because I didn’t want to add fuel to the fire. But Democrats and others opposing Donald Trump have to get strategically smarter.

Never let your opponent set the terms of debate.

Never let your opponent set the terms of debate.

Never let your opponent set the terms of debate.

Apparently the lie about Warren’s using Native American heritage started in an earlier race. But Trump added the “Pocahontas” part, an obvious racial slur. He also added a challenge that he would pay $1 million dollars to a charity of Warren’s choice if she would take a DNA test.

Probably the way Warren’s people thought about this was: Take the DNA test, demand the $1 million, show Trump to be a piker.

WRONG

 

History shows that Trump is a piker. The $1 million challenge gives him an opportunity to continue the smear. And there was no way he would stop the “Pocahontas” thing in response to a DNA test. Negative commentary from Native Americans gave him more ammunition. All that was predictable.

Trump gets some things right, and his idea of hitting back hard is one of them. Warren should have, the first time Trump said “Pocahontas,” hit back hard by calling that for what it was.  RACISM. Say that her heritage, like everyone else’s, has nothing to do with her eligibility for office. Give the story of Pocahontas and show how the wrongs against her are perpetrated by Trump’s bigotry.

I don’t want to make a big thing out of this – we have more important points to make as we move toward the election. But please, please, Democrats get smart about this.

Never let your opponent set the terms of debate.

 

290 replies
  1. 1
    dr. bloor says:

    I encountered exactly zero people outside of the Twitter Wurlitzer yesterday who were aware of any of this.

    Just sayin’.

  2. 2

    @dr. bloor: Good. I have a hard time evaluating how much any of these things affect the general population, particularly wary after the 2016 election. But it’s always best to avoid avoidable mistakes.

  3. 3
    MazeDancer says:

    Absolutely right, Cheryl. Even though the video was powerful, still right.

    Voted for Elizabeth Warren. Drove around, afterward, with her bumper sticker on my car for years. She is a great Senator and will continue to be a dynamic leader under the next Democratic administration.

    Which will not be hers.

    Because she can’t win. She has allowed Trump to destroy her. The media will spend the entire campaign parroting Trump talking points. They will promote Trump, bash Warren, it will be impossible.

  4. 4

    @MazeDancer: The video was good, but it was basically a defensive response to Trump. You can’t look strong when you’re being defensive.

  5. 5
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    Even better reply from Warren would have been “That’s rich coming from a guy one who’s parents wasn’t an America. I’ll do the DNA test AFTER you show us your Tax Returns Trump, because everyone says your dead broke and don’t have a million so I want to make sure you can cover your own bet” But has others have said, to many liberals still think we have to be polite stiff.

    Anyway, Warren did get their when Trump demanded to do Warren’s DNA test himself and she replied “that’s creepy”

  6. 6
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Trump is a symptom, not the disease. This is another distraction from the real danger, malignant christian cancervatism.

  7. 7
    Emma says:

    People who vote for Trump are not playing in the common realm of politics where such things as rules for debate and political calculation apply. They are psychopaths on a hate binge, prodded onwards by a malignant narcissist. Jesus Christ himself could return and the first “love thy neighbor” out of his mouth and he would be stoned to death. The way I see it, Warren laid down a family marker for the sane people: I come from a regular working class family, I share the history so many of you do, I have Republican brothers and we get along fine, I might be a liberal professor but I understand your lives. It will play well in the right places.

    (added) and please, can we stop thinking in terms of the “all-powerful MSM”? They’re not. A lot of the time they’re just talking to each other.

  8. 8
    aimai says:

    Look, trump’s going to trump. She had to respond and she did, very smartly, He is going to continue to lie and attack her on this as he would have anyway Now the press will stop colluding with him because they will be forced to cover the perfectly respectable DNA test. Stop acting like the sky is falling because a liar and cheat continues to lie and cheat. Five minutes ago the democrats were whining that Kerry didn’t respond to the Swift Boat Vets. You HAVE to respond forcefully to lies.

  9. 9
    Chyron HR says:

    @aimai:

    Now the press will stop colluding with him because they will be forced to cover the perfectly respectable DNA test.

    This is sarcasm, right?

  10. 10
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    “Never let your opponent set the terms of debate”

    They start with the racist lies, just haul off and punch them in the throat, HARD.

    Then you can debate with them gurgling on the floor.

  11. 11
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Way to go, all the back-patting-est wokest people in America. Fight the real enemy, Elizabeth Warren, just like you fought the last one, Hillary Clinton. Kim TallBear and Michelle Alexander sure do good work something-ing the somethings of white settler patriarchal something.

    Fuck this. I’m not paying any more attention to this bullshit today.

  12. 12

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: I’ve thought about this

    “That’s rich coming from a guy one who’s parents wasn’t an America. I’ll do the DNA test AFTER you show us your Tax Returns Trump, because everyone says your dead broke and don’t have a million so I want to make sure you can cover your own bet”

    and have mixed feelings. It is stronger than what she’s done, but it still gives Trump significant initiative.

  13. 13
    germy says:

    @aimai:

    Five minutes ago the democrats were whining that Kerry didn’t respond to the Swift Boat Vets. You HAVE to respond forcefully to lies.

    I agree.

  14. 14
    enplaned says:

    Democrats keep making the mistake of attributing any kind of reasonability to the kind of people who believe Trump.

    It’s actually a pretty common flaw among reasonable, rational people. They believe that if only they could find the right argument, they could find a key to unlock the hearts of their enemies. Obama suffered from this flaw big time.

    It’s frustrating, because if you read history you’ll see that some of the most effective Democrats (if not always the nicest) understood only too well that the only way to deal with GOPers was to be utterly ruthless about fighting them, to give no quarter at all. FDR was a great example – as a paid-up member of the wealthy elite, he knew only too well what his kind were like, and enjoyed the hell out of beating then at every turn. LBJ was a shocking human being, but ruthlessly effective in getting his way because he was, you know, utterly ruthless.

    The GOP leadership are scum. Figuratively we need to be ready to burn them in their own houses and salt their fields. They’ve been doing the same to us for decades.

  15. 15

    Yeah, I wasn’t thrilled when I heard about this yesterday. Democrats really do have to get smarter about this shit. Some things they need to learn (as far as I see it) in no order:

    The Very Serious People are never going to hold Republicans to the same standard they hold Democrats to, and trying to win their approval is a lost cause.

    “Civility” is a racket.

    Don’t back down and say you’re sorry when you hit somebody hard enough to make them wail about it. (Think about how Richard Durbin backed off what he said about 10 years ago about the Bush torture regime being like the nazis or Pol Pot. He was right. And backing off only made him look helpless.)

    Republicans never do anything in good faith. Never.

    Voters like people who take a stand, even if they end up losing when it’s all over. Voters even like people who take a stand that turns out to be wrong. If voters have to choose between people who dig in even when they’re wrong, and people who back off at the first sign of trouble, even if they turn out to be right more often than not, they’ll go with the former.

    When you do have to change your position, do it openly and forthrightly, and give a good moral or practical reason for doing it. Don’t give in to the temptation to blame it on some arcane question of procedure (I was for it before I was against it).

    When your opponents are scumbags, don’t mince words. Say so, bluntly.

  16. 16

    @FlipYrWhig:

    I’m not paying any more attention to this bullshit today.

    Good advice.

  17. 17
    Immanentize says:

    “Never let your opponent set the terms of debate,” said purple bandaid swiftboat commander and President John Kerry.

  18. 18
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    1. Republicans always set the terms of the debate. Always. That’s the consequence of them having control of a big chunk of the media with the rest eagerly eating out of their hands.
    2. I think we need to set up some sort of a matrix so democratic politicians know when they have to respond vs. when doing so is just letting Republicans set the terms of the debate. Obviously, Kerry not responding to the swift boating was a failure to respond, while Warren responding to the heritage jabs was letting Republicans set terms of the debate. Is there a way to distinguish which situation is which before the response, or are these things only knowable in hindsight?

  19. 19
    germy says:

    Surprised at how many people think this is about persuading people. She’s giving campaign reporters a good reason not to treat this ridiculous nontroversy as a he said/she said issue.
    IOW, she’s acting on a different lesson from 2016. https://t.co/iLDhchvq1f— Joshua Holland 🔥 (@JoshuaHol) October 16, 2018

  20. 20
    Viva BrisVegas says:

    In case anybody hadn’t noticed the right has spent the past decade or so proclaiming that anti-racism is the new racism. It’s OK to be white, dontcha know. Calling Trump a racist would also be playing into his hands, in 10 milliseconds he would have gone straight to the victim card and claimed that Warren was calling all white people racist.

    Warren did the only thing she could have done, she stood up for herself. If that is a dumb political move, then what is the alternative?

    What she needs to do now, is double down. She needs to get Republicans on the air defending their “fake science” message. The very same science that they love to use as evidence when executing people. She needs to show that she is defending the honor of her family and her ancestors, and fuck what some Native American activist, who couldn’t be bothered to call out the Pocahontas slurs, thinks.

    The trick when handling poisonous snakes is to never loosen your grip.

  21. 21
    Nicole says:

    I think her response was fine. Because I did see some coverage of the fact the Trump denied ever having made the $1 million pledge and of course there’s ample evidence that he did. Trump is a lying liar who lies is something that can continue to be hammered on whenever possible.

    The bigger issue, and Slate had a pretty good piece up about this, is that the Democrats are not permitted by the media to get angry; we have been pushed into the feminine role, and the Republicans get to be the masculine roll. So they get to throw temper tantrum‘s and lie and threaten and be violent, while if we even raise our voices, the media jumps on us for being impolite.

    And I don’t know what the solution to that is.

  22. 22
    TomDarga says:

    I would hardly call pointing out that Trump said something racist as “hitting back hard”.

  23. 23
    Corner Stone says:

    @germy:

    She’s giving campaign reporters a good reason not to treat this ridiculous nontroversy

    People that think this way must have slept through Hillary Clinton’s entire life and just recently came to.

  24. 24
    Corner Stone says:

    @Viva BrisVegas:

    The trick when handling snakes is to never loosen your grip.

    I thought it was “grab the tail also so they don’t wrap it around your arm”.

  25. 25
  26. 26
    the Conster says:

    I don’t know who the audience for this DNA information is, and the timing of releasing it is weird. She’s my Senator and I’m fine with her, but if this is groundwork for a 2020 run, and it looks like it is, it seems like an own goal. I’m pretty tapped into politics and hadn’t remembered or maybe never heard about Trump’s $1MM bet, but who the fuck would take anything he says seriously? Everything he says is meant to be an insult to someone or something, and to a casual observer of politics it looks like all she’s been doing for the last two years is thinking “I’ll get him”. This DNA test doesn’t do that. Her “creepy” remark is right on though. He’s a lying creepy freak.

  27. 27
    TS (the original) says:

    @Nicole:

    So they get to throw temper tantrum‘s and lie and threaten and be violent, while if we even raise our voices, the media jumps on us for being impolite.

    It is near impossible to find a solution to this – the US media sides with the GOP on virtually every issue. Why aren’t they ranting about the deficit – as they did for 8 years with President Obama. Why are they “both siding” when trump lies about everything all the time. It goes on and on – as soon as the democrats look like winning – the media takes them down – and then the dems turn on their own – like this discussion about Elizabeth Warren. I don’t think she can win a presidential primary, but I do think she has the right to call trump out on his continual attacks, insults and racism.

  28. 28
    Bruce K says:

    God, I hope that the cheeto dies in Sing Sing, and that the party that elevated him to the highest office in the land joins the Know-Nothings in the trash-heap of history.

  29. 29
    meander says:

    What I’m wondering is why this couldn’t have waited until, say, December 1, 2018, or even November 7, 2018? Don’t we have a preposterously important election in just a few weeks? And doesn’t this have NOTHING to do with that election? So why add this noise now?

    [Also, all journalists should be forbidden from writing about the 2020 campaign until November 7.]

  30. 30
    Corner Stone says:

    @Butter Emails!!!:

    Republicans always set the terms of the debate. Always.

    It’s not always about the debate. They just lie constantly, about everything. If one lie starts to get worn out they lie about something else, loudly and often. The D candidate can’t spend all their money and oxygen correcting the record non-stop. IMO they mainly need to focus on their own message.

  31. 31
    Betty Cracker says:

    What aimai said. If Warren stayed silent while Trump continued to lie about her heritage (he never stopped), that would be allowing him to set the terms of the debate.

  32. 32
    Corner Stone says:

    Why is Donna Brazile on my TV two days in a row?

  33. 33
    the Conster says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Also this. I don’t understand how anyone can survey the media landscape and not understand how they’re working overtime to make sure they never have to admit any responsibility for destroying the country.

  34. 34

    @Butter Emails!!!:

    Is there a way to distinguish which situation is which before the response, or are these things only knowable in hindsight?

    Trump is pretty obvious in trying to set the terms of debate. Whether his opponents accept them or not is another question.

    – I’ll get a DNA test and show that he’s wrong
    The “show that he’s wrong” part accepts that he is debating on some reasonable ground. Better to shift the blame to him through a demand for taxes or an attack based on his racism.

    My experience is that it’s something I have to recognize in myself. Is my response defensive? Am I justifying my position, making excuses for myself? If the answer to any of that is yes, it’s the wrong response.

  35. 35
    magurakurin says:

    If Warren wants to stand out in the field and take lightning bolts…I say all the better for Kamala Harris. It gives Harris a few more months cover to get situated. Warren will never be the nominee much less president. It’s going to be a battle between Booker and Harris, and my money is on Harris. Any bullshit Warren wants to absorb now…great.

    Imagine how fucked up next summer and the summer after next are going to be. This little dust up won’t even register.

  36. 36
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    @Nicole:

    I think the solution probably would have been Hillary warning Trump and then punching him in the neck while he was doing his menacing stalker routine during the debate. This has been the role democrats have been pigeon holed into, in order to break out of it, we have to intentionally defy it and that will come at a political cost until the media treats pissed off, fighting democrats as normal and acceptable. I mean, it did take decades for it to become acceptable and normal for Republicans to be raging assholes. Trump really didn’t upset the norms over night.

  37. 37

    @TomDarga: How many Democrats have done that in a strong and persistent way?

  38. 38

    @Betty Cracker: I’m not arguing that Warren should have stayed silent. On the contrary, she should have attacked him for his racism. Hard.

  39. 39
    JR says:

    I completely agree.

    Warren should know better.

  40. 40
    tobie says:

    @Nicole:

    The bigger issue…is that the Democrats are not permitted by the media to get angry

    I think that’s partially true, but my sense is we need to be more precise about the demographic. Non-white, non-male, non-straight Dems are not allowed to be angry. White, straight, angry males may still be acceptable. I had a weird experience canvassing this weekend, where I met older, working class white Dems who loved Sanders but hated Ben Jealous, Ocasio-Cortez, and a transgender primary candidate in Delaware. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out what’s motivating that antipathy.

  41. 41
    the Conster says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I don’t really understand what “the debate” is. Whether she’s part Cherokee or not? Does anyone other than EW care? Any normal person doesn’t give a shit – she’s a white woman who has gone through the world as a white woman.

  42. 42
    Droppy says:

    I don’t think it matters one way or the other. As with Hillary Clinton’s emails, they will latch on to anything, however irrelevant and minor, and turn it into a Major Scandal – Solyndra, Swift Boats, “inventing the internet”, long-form birth certificate – it clearly makes no difference how small or large, real or fake – the whole point is to throw something out there and stick with it relentlessly in the full awareness that the lazy and obedient media celebrities will chase after it – the dumber and more obviously false, the more energy they will devote to it. She will be even more “Pocahontas” than ever – she outed herself as a fake and still was only hired because she wore a headdress around campus and smoked a peace pipe, etc.

  43. 43
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    @Corner Stone:

    It’s not always about the debate. They just lie constantly, about everything. If one lie starts to get worn out they lie about something else, loudly and often. The D candidate can’t spend all their money and oxygen correcting the record non-stop. IMO they mainly need to focus on their own message.

    I agree, but some things need to be addressed. Republicans get to toss the BS out there. It’s up to the individual Democrat to decide what’s worth being challenged, but that BS heavily influences the terms of any debate if and when it occurs.

  44. 44
    magurakurin says:

    @JR:

    Warren should know better.

    She should have known better not to vote for Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Reagan, Bush, Bush…but maybe she’s a slow learner.

    She’s a good senator. She should stay there.

    because she’ll never be the nominee.

  45. 45
    the Conster says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Dem ratfucking. Everyone gets rich ratfucking Dems.

  46. 46

    @Emma:

    the “all-powerful MSM”? They’re not.

    I learned watching political debates during the Obama era, and it was particularly obvious during the 2016 presidential campaigns, that the national press is terrible at convincing the public what to think. What they are fantastic at is controlling what people are talking about. If they want to pretend something doesn’t exist, even here at Balloon Juice where we have contempt for them, very few people will know about it.

    @Nicole:

    And I don’t know what the solution to that is.

    There isn’t one, not really. The only ways to win an abusive relationship are to appeal to a higher power, or to leave. We can’t leave and the only higher power are the voting public, which is currently divided. No matter what a Democrat does in response to Republican attacks, it will only be damage control. If we go abusive back, the nation sinks into violent anarchy and large numbers of people starve. Anyone who’s been stuck in an abusive relationship they can’t leave will understand not only how you cannot win, but how unfair the burden is to have to try and keep life running while one person weaponizes that fact against you. Note that the MSM are Republicans and not only complicit, but leading the abuse.

  47. 47
    magurakurin says:

    @the Conster: The sort of weird, ironic thing of it all is that when Harvard used her name to shore up their diversity weakness and she agreed to it…she was a Republican.

  48. 48
    Jeffro says:

    I’m still shocked that Trumpov’s opponents didn’t and don’t focus on the fact that he’s a complete moron. Or “straight-up racist moron”. Or “untalented blowhard racist moron”. But it all comes back to the stupidity. I mean, he is SO dumb…the jokes just write themselves.

  49. 49
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I was thinking more of broader debate then the specifics. it’s true that taking the DNA test was definitely a Trump thing. I was thinking more broadly about the debate about Warren’s heritage in general. The entire thing has been a BS non issue from the start, but Warren has needed to address it, first when running against Brown and now with Trump. By definition this is the sort of thing she would rather not be debating, as it’s not central to her platform or even her basic messaging.

  50. 50
    Another Scott says:

    Dunno, Cheryl.

    I haven’t watched the video. But outside the chattering classes, and people in MA, and the Russian twitter bots, I don’t think this really matters. And if/when she gets asked about it she can say, “Asked and answered, see my web site. Next.”

    The “questions” will never go away. She’s created a compelling answer. That’s all she can do. It doesn’t keep her from talking about other things.

    But I do agree that it’s a distraction for most of us. She’s running for re-election now, so getting this out there (while talking about real issues) is probably necessary and doing it as a video saves her from answering the question eleventy-billion times on the stump. For the rest of us, we need to be doing what we can to strengthen The Wave rather than getting swallowed by the usual “Is X running for President?!??! Tune in and find out!!11”.

    My $0.02.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  51. 51
    gene108 says:

    Damned if you do. Damned if you don’t.

    Don’t know why she put down Native American at Harvard, when she knew she was no more than 1/16 Native American.

    But there it is.

    And unfortunately I don’t think a woman can say, “I did what I did, so what” and brazen her way through it, the way a man could. It would be unladylike.

  52. 52
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Cheryl, top:

    Trump gets some things right, and his idea of hitting back hard is one of them. Warren should have, the first time Trump said “Pocahontas,” hit back hard by calling that for what it was. RACISM. Say that her heritage, like everyone else’s, has nothing to do with her eligibility for office. Give the story of Pocahontas and show how the wrongs against her are perpetrated by Trump’s bigotry.

    But she did, months ago, passionately and profoundly. The speech is about 17 minutes long, and worth listening to in its entirety.

  53. 53
    magurakurin says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: wow. that is a really depressing way to frame it. It’s also stunningly accurate…bloody hell.

  54. 54
    debit says:

    It would be really fucking nice if we could be like Republicans and support our candidates instead of looking for reasons to tear them down.

  55. 55
    Corner Stone says:

    Speaking of debates, does anyone else remember the outrage the media stirred up about the Gore v Bush debate? The one where Gore exhaled louder than a jet taking off from an aircraft carrier and was always stepping on Bush’s shiny new boots?
    Yeah, except none of that was accurate. If you watched the debate Gore largely stayed in his own space and the “sighs” were inaudible.

  56. 56
    Ken Shabby says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I’m on fence about this.
    I don’t think she’s even done yet. If she can set this up, seize the debate and humiliate him, it may yet work. And, well.

    I hope she has many more cards to play because he is nothing if not a big bag of wind at card table. Worst. Poker. Player. Ever.

    That’s my counter but, right now, either could be true.

    One of them is wicked smart; Other is just wicked.

  57. 57
    Hitlesswonder says:

    Warren screwed up. Trump annihilated her in those tweets. Even liberals think she claimed American Indian ancestry to get a job she wasn’t entitled to, based on the coverage of this story.

  58. 58
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    @magurakurin:

    She should have known better not to vote for Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Reagan, Bush, Bush…but maybe she’s a slow learner.

    She’s a good senator. She should stay there.

    because she’ll never be the nominee.

    I agree, I don’t think she’ll be the nominee. I do think she needs to run because she’ll siphon votes from Saint Bernard the Pure and Benevolent in the early primary states.

  59. 59

    @Butter Emails!!!: I would say that the way to address it would be a strong statement that genetic heritage is not a qualification for office nor citizenship in the United States. Then minimize responses, or refer to slavery and Jim Crow as bad examples of the converse.

  60. 60
    noncarborundum says:

    For what it’s worth, it was not Trump who came up with “Pocahontas”. I’m pretty sure that it was Boston radio Neanderthal Howie Carr, who used it back when Warren was running for Senator against Scott Brown.

  61. 61
    catbirdman says:

    Trump wiped out an entire field of R’s, and then Hillary, in 2016, and that included a lot of people who tried to “not let their opponent set the terms of the debate.” Frankly, it’s far from a “debate.” This is something different, and people like Warren should respond to Trump’s repetitive name-calling however they believe it will serve them best. If she feels most comfortable coming back from a position of factual correctness, then she should do what she did. I just hate the idea that there’s “one sure way” to defeat a devil like Trump. Warren is fighting the best way she knows how, and that’s good enough for me.

  62. 62
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    You folks don’t really get it. First of all 2020 is just a month away. The morning after the midterms, it’s game on, the starting pistol, whatever. The winner of 2020 is not going to wait for some mythical ” right time”. Whoever wins 2020 is going to be the one who draws blood on Trump first and deepest, and she’s doing just that.
    While she’s apparently in no danger of losing her seat, she’s not going to hang back and let Donald Trump define her. She’s told her story at a time when she’s not running for President, so she’s not going to be swamped with counter ads or accusations of opportunism.
    Hillary, Gore, Kerry, listened to those who said hold back, not be drawn into the fight. But if you tell your story, it’s out there
    Nobody is distracted by this kerfluffle about Warrren. It’s a one-day distraction, and it certainly not going to keep people from voting for other Democrats.
    Hillary Clinton should have done the same-told her story and let it out.

  63. 63
    kindness says:

    Cheryl on whole I think you are correct about not letting opponents define you, but in cases like Senator Warren, that had already happened. She was correct in putting out that video. Not only did it prove her right but it also highlighted what should be normal respect people deserve, even from Republicans. And it did that. Just because current Republican bigwigs think there should be no normal doesn’t make them right.

  64. 64
    zhena gogolia says:

    @debit:

    Yes, 1000 times. I harped on this with my “liberal” friends all through the 2004 and 2016 campaigns. to no avail

  65. 65

    @SiubhanDuinne: Then she should have repeated it, over and over again, every time Trump said “Pocahontas.”

  66. 66
    TS (the original) says:

    Don’t know why she put down Native American at Harvard, when she knew she was no more than 1/16 Native American

    And if she was a GOP senator, no-one would have noticed it, let alone ranted about it. She wrote it down because the question probably said “Do you have any Native American ancestry”. She had been told this was the case, so she said yes, NOT to get any benefit, simply to tell the truth.

    This is what is so weird with US politics. What is a non event for a republican is the biggest sin for a democrat. President Obama really had to be purer than pure to win his 2 elections. As a democrat, trump would never have even got to the first primary debate, yet here he is – POTUS. Just disgusting.

  67. 67
    debit says:

    I am pieing every single one of you who said she screwed up. Your perspective is either fucked up or you’re a ratfucker.

  68. 68
    Ken Shabby says:

    @Corner Stone:

    As v. Trump’s coke nose and wobbly plate and warble tongue.
    Anon E. Mush.

    Sooner or later, someone’s going to catch that slob flush.
    I may have heart failure celebrating –

  69. 69
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @Nicole: Get angry anyway.

  70. 70
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Emma:

    The way I see it, Warren laid down a family marker for the sane people: I come from a regular working class family, I share the history so many of you do, I have Republican brothers and we get along fine, I might be a liberal professor but I understand your lives. It will play well in the right places.

    Bingo.

    @aimai:

    Stop acting like the sky is falling because a liar and cheat continues to lie and cheat…. You HAVE to respond forcefully to lies.

    Bingo noch einmal.

    You set the record straight – once. And move on, leaving it out there for any- & everyone to see.

    @A Ghost To Most:

    malignant christianist cancervatism

    With the addition of those three little italicized letters, I am so absconding with this. Well played!

  71. 71
    zhena gogolia says:

    I showed her video to my husband last night. He was less struck by the parts showing Warren than the out-and-proud racist Repubs shown on the video, especially the guy doing the war whoop, whoever he was. For a less-plugged-in person than the BJ crowd, those clips of the Repubs are deeply shocking.

  72. 72

    @catbirdman: Do. Or do not. There is no try.

  73. 73
    Ken Shabby says:

    @debit:

    That’s a bit strong.
    I’m sticking around. May learn something.

  74. 74
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jeffro:

    I’m still shocked that Trumpov’s opponents didn’t and don’t focus on the fact that he’s a complete moron. Or “straight-up racist moron”.

    They all recognized that Trump was the Prime Mover on the category of voters they were not ready to blatantly chase – the flat out racists. They all wanted to dance with the racists once they were at the party but they didn’t want to be seen arriving with them. So they didn’t viciously attack Trump, as they should have, because they didn’t want to offend the “base” of his support.

  75. 75

    @kindness: She should have hit back, hard, the first time Trump said “Pocahontas.”

  76. 76
    Hitlesswonder says:

    @Jeffro: The problem is that most of the electorate either actively advocates racist governance or doesn’t care if someone is racist. Also, the electorate prefers people that aren’t eggheads, so attacking intelligence isn’t going to help either. You have to attack what people like about Trump…so show he’s a fraud in terms of wealth, show him having failed, show him sucking up to people or backing down.

  77. 77
    rp says:

    I don’t buy this. She’s obviously baiting him, which is not a bad idea. Of course she’s not going to persuade his voters, but it might have some impact on the media. As for the timing, if he spends some chunk of time between now and the election going off on her, it helps to remind low info. voters that we have a crazy a$$hole as President.

  78. 78
    Ken Shabby says:

    @CarolDuhart2:

    Timing – and tone – is everything.

    But – yes.

  79. 79
    Blue Galangal says:

    @Corner Stone: Exactly. Scott Walker is literally lying about supporting coverage for pre-existing conditions. Kemp is literally lying about undocumented people voting. McSally is literally lying about Sinema’s remarks from 15 years ago. No one calls them out on it. The media reports the lie, it never gets rebutted, and the person reading/seeing the story walks away with the lie burned into their mind.

  80. 80

    Warren’s audience for this really isn’t Trump supporters. There are two audiences – first, the audience that wants our side to fight back. The second audience is any news outlet that is trying for impartiality. Now that the test is out, they can’t “just ask the question” about her heritage. It’s answered. Moreover, now the conversation is about why Trump isn’t paying the million bucks like he promised.

  81. 81
    Elizabelle says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    Fuck this. I’m not paying any more attention to this bullshit today.

    Yup. Not about to wail on Senator Warren. She is up against a lying authoritarian and a media that lives for clicks and controversy.

    @debit:

    I am pieing every single one of you who said she screwed up. Your perspective is either fucked up or you’re a ratfucker.

    I am feeling that way too. And, speaking of the pied, what has happened to Tengu Phule? He has been noticeably absent, although do not miss his ministry of despair.

  82. 82
    Ken Shabby says:

    @catbirdman:
    Thing is, GOP has home field advantage, in event. Any fight is on their terms or partially so.
    Victory comes by stuffing it all up their ass until they choke.

    I look forward to that. Warren’s got the Right Stuff.

  83. 83
    debit says:

    @Ken Shabby: Learn what? That no matter what a candidate does it’s the worst possible thing? Fuck that shit. Support our people or get the fuck out. I’ve had it.

  84. 84
    JMG says:

    @meander: Warren will be on the ballot in Massachusetts in three weeks. She’s in the middle of an election. Yeah, she’s pretty much certain to win by an area code number, but she’s allowed to campaign for herself.

  85. 85
    Elizabelle says:

    @debit: I have kind of stepped away from a lot of BJuice, because it’s just despair inducing.

  86. 86
    MobiusKlein says:

    I vacillate between ‘do not feed the trolls’ and ‘hit them back hard’

    On this case, I’m leaning towards DNFTT, mostly because they are swarming on this news.

  87. 87
    magurakurin says:

    @Butter Emails!!!:

    I do think she needs to run because she’ll siphon votes from Saint Bernard the Pure and Benevolent in the early primary states.

    that would be fine by me. More lightning bolts.

  88. 88
    debit says:

    @Elizabelle: I can’t remember the last time we interacted, but it’s been at least a week. Could just be taking a break? I’ve had to just close the tab and not look at Balloon Juice periodically in the past. As much as I love a lot about this blog, sometimes it’s ragegasm inducing. See this particular post in reference.

    ETA: Come sit by me.

  89. 89
    PJ says:

    @aimai: @Cheryl Rofer: Every Democratic candidate will have to and should defend against the lies and bullshit spread by Republicans. Doing so will not stop Republicans from continuing to spread lies and bullshit, but it should, eventually, shut the media up about repeating them, and, at a minimum, give Democrats the means to push back against the lies and bullshit. Just saying, “this Republican argument is racist, sexist, bigoted, etc.” goes nowhere in American politics and particularly with the media. Every lie has to be countered. Not doing so makes it looks like Democrats are tacitly agreeing with the accusations and acquiescing to the Republican agenda. Trying to “rise above it” didn’t work for Kerry or the Clintons. Screw that.

  90. 90
    jacy says:

    I don’t care whether Warren took a DNA test or not or how Trump is going to respond to it. There are LITERALLY 1000 things more important right this second: Saudi Arabia, voter suppression, stealing children…fill in the blank.

    I don’t understand why any Democrat is even talking about it. At all. She did what she thought she should do and I’m not going to second guess her — BECAUSE THE THING THAT DEMOCRATS DO THAT FUCKS EVERYTHING UP IS SIT AROUND SECOND GUESSING THINGS. And it’s not just the MSM, it’s too many Democrats. And then it’s all purity ponies and infighting and wailing and stomping their feet. And that’s the last thing I will ever say (or even think) about the stupid fucking DNA controversy. IT DOESN’T MATTER. JFC.

    Swear to dog it’s like the mythos of thwarting a vampire by throwing down a handful of rice, because they’ll have to stop and count every grain before moving forward. We need to stop counting all the rice.

  91. 91
    Ken Shabby says:

    @debit:

    I do. I don’t mind the convo unless or until it’s as you say. Then, I feel precisely the way you do. For real.

    I am optimistic about this. Timing and talent – Warren, Harris and others – Adam Schiff? – give beginning….hope. It’s def up to the rest of us to take every W and run with it.

    Like you, I don’t bother with confusion. Or, worse.

  92. 92
    Rommie says:

    See also Graham, L., totally re-framing what the last Kavanaugh hearing was about and winning with a Hail Mary. And that is because the defense wasn’t ready for it and didn’t react the way they needed to. Kavanaugh went from Done You’re Finished to the newest SC Justice in a flash.

    If Warren isn’t running for President, this makes a LOT more sense. She’s focused the Eye of Sauron, er, Trump on her, instead of the election. She’ll be in the same place in the end, and he’ll say the same things he always says. Keep the Bear howling at you if it can’t hurt you, and away from those it can hurt.

    If she is going for 2020 – you can’t shame Trump, he’ll double down on his Pocahontas dance. You better be ready to respond if you really want to win against him.

  93. 93
    Ken Shabby says:

    Multiple methods, tactics, relentless persistence and strong belief in outcome.

    I look forward to this. There’s no going back and, no other way.

    Bring that shit. Hourly.

  94. 94
    rp says:

    Also, we can’t flip out when Trump tweets some crazy sh*t. Of course he’s going to do that. The irony here is that freaking out because Trump sent some nasty tweets letting your opponent set the terms of debate.

  95. 95
    Tractarian says:

    I was pretty bullish on Warren’s 2020 chances until yesterday. Of course this whole thing is ridiculously unimportant, but I now have a bunch of doubts about Warren’s political instincts that I didn’t previously have.

  96. 96
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    I think what will stick is this: Trump is a welsher who doesn’t pay his bets. People get that.

    As for the NA people with a rod up their butts: face up to what we black people had to. There’s a lot of folks who are 1/4, 1/32nd, whatever because their great-grand whatevers decided that passing was a better bet than suffering the effects of even defacto Jim Crow. Even if there was no law, people get tired of not having opportunities, and after enough no’s decide their NA identity is more of a handicap than a help. Also, after 400 years of mischief, who is to say there aren’t even more descendants of NA than you think who don’t know it yet. It’s not like Elizabeth Warren is trying to get on tribal rolls or something.

    And she might not even mean Cherokee. Native Americans were pushed around all over the place, and who is to say what tribe her ancestor was?

  97. 97
    Hitlesswonder says:

    @PJ: Maybe the Dems need a uniform response in which they point out Republicans lie…make the lying the issue. So the Dem response isn’t focussed on the actual facts of the issue but rather that the Republican lied about those facts. It would be like a version of “Fake News” but, you know, factually correct.

  98. 98
    Emma says:

    @Hitlesswonder: OOOOH there you are again. We have the trifecta!

  99. 99
    germy says:

    The first proof that she did the right thing is, when they brought it to Trump he said “who cares” — indicating that he thinks he can’t get any more mileage out of it — and, when reminded he promised a million dollars if she proved it, didn’t do the hair-splitting bullshit French and the others did, but just flat denied he’s said any such thing. In short, he didn’t handle it was well as his propagandists.

    If you fight bullies back they malfunction.

    Roy Edroso

  100. 100
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @tobie: Bet he’d drop his Bernie-love in a New York nanosecond if he but knew his hero is a Jew. With the knuckle-dragging mouth-breathing Trumpanzees, anti-Semitism usually comes baked in before the oh-so-white icing goes on.

  101. 101
    Ken Shabby says:

    @Rommie:

    I think she is. Ready. That person is a brilliant terrier. Her entire life. That orange slob has no idea the fights he’s picked.

    Warren’s been beating a war drum since her entry into politics. Meanwhile, learning craft, waiting for her set. That kind of patient determination is All.

  102. 102
    Emma says:

    @catbirdman: Excuse me but he didn’t “wipe the floor with Hillary”. She WON THE ELECTION by more than 2,000,000 votes. He, with the help of the Russians, stole the Electoral college.

  103. 103
    Ken Shabby says:

    @rp:

    Ding ding.

  104. 104
    Mike in NC says:

    The corporate media created Trump about 40 years ago and have been on his side ever since. They will do their best to get him re-elected in 2020 because of the buying power of old racist white people (AKA the people who live on my street). Follow the money.

  105. 105
    Jeffro says:

    @Corner Stone: So true. And it would have only taken an ounce of courage, too.

    Whatever. The barbarians have most definitely taken over the GOP’s ‘castle’ at this point. They should have fought ’em at the moat, but oh well…

  106. 106
    Panurge says:

    @MazeDancer: She’s only destroyed if we agree. Why do we keep agreeing? Why do we keep accepting this conceptual frame?

  107. 107
    ribber says:

    “Pony up, welcher.” should be the first reply to every tweet he posts. It’s in the language his supporters understand.

  108. 108
    The Moar You Know says:

    She had to respond

    @aimai: No, actually, responding was the stupidest thing she could have done. And I can always count on my party to fuck up a ham sandwich. She has no business running for the presidency.

    Ought to look how Mike Levin is running for Issa’s seat out here. No mercy. Doesn’t respond to shit, just kept hammering on Issa until he bowed out, and is now destroying – and I mean destroying Diane Harkey, the Republican. Got her on the defensive from day one and has never let up, and about every four weeks puts something else on the pile. Latest fliers/sign going up: “STOP DIANE HARKEY’S TRUMP AGENDA”. Perfect. I’m predicting she’ll get her 27% and not one vote more.

    That’s how you fight these people. Not by doing what they ask you to. You fight them like Trump fought the GOP establishment – ignore everything they say about you, find a weak spot, and hammer the crap out of them.

  109. 109
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @debit: the Eeyore wing of the BJ commentariat is out in full force this morning.

  110. 110
    Doug R says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.):

    Voters like people who take a stand, even if they end up losing when it’s all over. Voters even like people who take a stand that turns out to be wrong. If voters have to choose between people who dig in even when they’re wrong, and people who back off at the first sign of trouble, even if they turn out to be right more often than not, they’ll go with the former.

    Is exactly what all the Republican commentariat says.
    Real people make mistakes and then admit them.

  111. 111

    …except it’s NOT debate, it’s performance.

  112. 112
    randy khan says:

    My take on this yesterday was that she’s running for President, and in my view that made this too early, if nothing else.

    That said, last night I got into an odd Facebook debate with one of my lefty friends, all because he more or less quoted the RW talking point that she put it on her job application for Harvard Law School (which is not true, as both she and HLS have said repeatedly). So the problem that she has is that the talking point has become part of the background of this story, even though it’s a proven lie. She certainly needs to do something about it.

    Regardless, she’s not likely to be my top choice in 2020 – she’s older than I want the Dem candidate to be and her instincts aren’t as good as Gillibrand, Harris, or even Booker.

  113. 113
    Ken Shabby says:

    A page out of Ali’s playbook:

    “Sonny Liston is nothing. The man can’t talk. The man can’t fight. The man needs talking lessons. The man needs boxing lessons. And since he’s gonna fight me, he needs falling lessons. I’ll hit Liston with so many punches from so many angles he’ll think he’s surrounded.”

    I think Elizabeth Warren has mad skills.
    This thing is just starting.

  114. 114
    different-church-lady says:

    On the one hand: “Never let the opponent set the terms of the debate”. On the other: “Do not let a bully punch you without punching back.” How do you choose in this case?

  115. 115
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @enplaned:

    LBJ was a shocking human being, but ruthlessly effective in getting his way because he was, you know, utterly ruthless.

    There’s a fairly regular commenter at BooMan’s place who always uses as a tag line a quote supposedly from LBJ: “Grab ’em by the balls and their hearts and minds will follow.”

  116. 116
    Bupalos says:

    Damned if you do and damned if you don’t, and then all your friends come out of the woodwork to explain why you’re doing it wrong and if you’d only be smarter. Or smile more. Or something.

    I’m fine with whatever way she answers the scumbag in chief, it really doesn’t matter, and no one should be surprised that it doesn’t work that well because there are a never ending stream of very concerned people who are paid not to get it. The only additional advice I’d give is that she needs to do more of the offensive now, call him a creepy pervert lying welscher tax fraud deadbeat silverspoon incontinent shit at every turn. All day, every day. Talk policy, but in this context: “what creepy con-man Donald can never understand is…”

  117. 117
    Emma says:

    Has anyone noticed that every time a Democrat does something that could be construed as doing something right, a bunch of commenters show up whining and bitching? Not our usual Eeyores, I mean. Out Eeyores might be discouraged but they aren’t liars.

    (edited for weird sentence construction!)

  118. 118
    Ken Shabby says:

    @randy khan:

    “Regardless, she’s not likely to be my top choice in 2020 – she’s older than I want the Dem candidate to be and her instincts aren’t as good as Gillibrand, Harris, or even Booker.”

    All true, I’d change order to Harris, Gillibrand, Booker. A lot relies on who comes out with what, next two years. Yes, Warren’s age. But of the four in this group, I give a nod to her.
    Except for age, she’s almost pitch perfect and tough as hell.

  119. 119
    Hitlesswonder says:

    @Emma: FWIW, I think Warren is only potential presidential candidate to have the guts to advocate for significant economic reform along with an actual plan to accomplish it. She seems like someone with the energy and ability to actually accomplish things. I would be very happy to see a Democratic administration with her priorities. Which is why I guess it particularly bothers me to see what looks like Republicans successfully reinforcing their propaganda and another issue in which the media holds Warren to a standard that no Republican seems held to.

  120. 120
    germy says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: “Kick ’em hard enough in the balls and their hearts and minds won’t matter.”

  121. 121
    Doug R says:

    This conforms to what’s been told to me by practically every native-born Oklahoman I’ve ever met. But that’s beside the point. If it had been me, I’d have told the president* to pound sand until he released his tax returns. This is further evidence that I never will be elected to anything, ever.

    Elizabeth Warren Had to Engage With This Nonsense. That’s What Our Politics Have Become.
    There was no better way to handle it.

  122. 122

    @Frank Wilhoit:

    …except it’s NOT debate, it’s performance.

    Bingo! Which is why it’s important to get your points forward and hammer the opposition.

    We’re seeing a few meanings of “debate” in this thread. I intended a broad meaning of the word, the whole discussion around “Pocahontas” and Warren’s DNA. It’s certainly not a debate in terms of Oxford rules and such. Which is why one needs to seize the framing, and can, if played right.

  123. 123
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Another Scott:

    But I do agree that it’s a distraction for most of us. She’s running for re-election now, so getting this out there (while talking about real issues) is probably necessary and doing it as a video saves her from answering the question eleventy-billion times on the stump.

    What I highlighted above is what I find so bizarre abiut Democrats’ responses to this video. She is running fpr re-election right now. Why is everyone on the Democratic side making the automatic assumption that thia is a pre-ad for 2020 and not an ad for the election she is currently running in?

    Warren felt she needed to address the fact that Trump is a lying liar who lies during her current re-election campaign. Can we maybe debate that strategic choice rather than declaring that this will be a disaster two years from now?

  124. 124
    Doug R says:

    Is it possible to get a new thread with less Eeyore?

  125. 125
  126. 126
    Butter Emails!!! says:

    @Rommie:

    See also Graham, L., totally re-framing what the last Kavanaugh hearing was about and winning with a Hail Mary. And that is because the defense wasn’t ready for it and didn’t react the way they needed to. Kavanaugh went from Done You’re Finished to the newest SC Justice in a flash.

    Incredible. Everything in the above quote is wrong.

  127. 127
    germy says:

    @Emma: I predict if Harris wins the pres nomination, a bunch of new nyms will show up to discuss in detail her relationship with Willie Brown, her role as a “cop” etc. If Kirsten gets the nom, they’ll talk about her venture capitalist husband. If Warren wins, they’ll say she doesn’t have a chance because of her weak grasp of politics.

    I don’t know if they get paid by the hour, the word, or perhaps.

  128. 128
    gwangung says:

    It’s clear to me that far too many folks don’t have a clue WHY some indigenous folks are upset. They’re way to dismissive.

    That’s just as discouraging as anything Trump has done.

  129. 129
  130. 130
    debit says:

    I would really love to know what One Weird Trick EW could have used to accomplish the magical goal that’s been set for her. What could she say or do that would shame Trump enough to shut him up and force the media to cover it fairly. Seriously, I want to know. “I’ll release my DNA results when he releases his tax returns”? GIVE ME A FUCKING BREAK. The headline would be Elizabeth Warren Refuses to Prove her Claims! So let’s hear it. What should she do?

  131. 131
    Emma says:

    @Ken Shabby: Keep discriminating on age and there are a LOT of women who are going to get belligerent. And you need us.

  132. 132
    Amir Khalid says:

    In the great scheme of things, this skirmish between Trump and Elizabeth Warren is a distraction. I’m not sure if there’s a point in trying to score it. You could say that she won on the facts, or that he won the arguing by sheer belligerence. Me, I’d call it a draw. I doubt anyone feels any different now about either her or him. Whatever you think of her tactics, she didn’t say or do anything to disqualify herself as a Democrat or as a candidate for anything, so she came out of it just fine. He trotted out the old lie simply to poke at Democrats again because it’s what he and his supporters do for fun, and he managed that so he “won”. My feeling is, you only lose this one if you come away feeling like you lost.

    Like raven says, fuck it and drive on.

  133. 133
    germy says:

    If you need any proof that evil ages you, Sarah Sanders and Stephen Miller are younger than Meghan Markle.— The Volatile Mermaid (@OhNoSheTwitnt) October 15, 2018

  134. 134
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Butter Emails!!!:

    At dinner the other night one of my “liberal” friends was going on about how there were all kinds of things the Democrats could have done to stop Kavanaugh that they didn’t do. I said, “Name one.” He said, “They could have just not shown up to the hearings, and there would have been no confirmation.” This is what we’re dealing with. And I’m talking a tenured professor.

  135. 135
    Mikeindublin says:

    Did people think Obama giving his guilt by association speech about rev wright was letting republicans control the debate?

    I thought it was effective. It was on a much larger scale that at the time nearly derailed his candidacy but with Republicans effectiveness of instilling doubt with a lie, Warren could be cast as someone that tried to use a heritage claim which Cheetolini the serial liar (and people overwhelmingly do believe this) said she wasnt’ to advance her career, both of which she’s disproved.

    Anyways, Warren is a fighter, whip smart and folksy enough imho to win back some votes lost in the last election. That’s my thumb in the wind analysis.

  136. 136
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Here’s the thing: without thoae DNA results in hand, Warren cannot call Trump out as a racist, because his play is that he’s not mocking her for being part Cherokee, he’s mocking her for being a white woman who faked an ancestry she doesn’t have. To put it into lefty terms, Trump and the Republicans have been claiming that Warren is Rachel Dolezal, a white woman pretending to be someone of a different race.

    Now that Warren has been able to prove her ancestry, Trump is raging because now everything he said about her ancestry is demonstrably racist, and it’s all on the record. That’s why he’s flailing arpund trying to claim that her DNA doesn’t matter or that it’s faked. He has to double down because the entire slam is based on Warren being a liar.

    Even Trump’s racist asshole followers know it’s bad to publicly call someone with verified Native American ancestry “Pocahontas.” That’s why he’s trying desperately to claim she’s still a liar.

  137. 137
    Leto says:

    @different-church-lady: When liars have spent years lying about your party member, make sure to turn on that party member and beat them down. Her specific issue has been in the news since at least May 2012. Cheryl keeps saying that she should hit back hard every time it’s brought up; she has. She’s given multiple interviews, included it in her books, had the Boston Globe do a big feature, gave that 17 min speech about it… here’s the next step. It’s the long form birth certificate all over again. You can’t ignore the bully repeatedly punching you (Kerry), but apparently if you respond to it then it was the totally wrong thing to do. Dems need to get their damned narrative straight: are we the punching bag, or do we hit back?

    I’m in the camp of punch’em in the throat and talk over them.

  138. 138
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Warren did nothing wrong, and all this inside baseball hand wringing is just a distraction. FIDO.

  139. 139
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @gwangung: Some may be. But those folks have to face the fact that there are a lot of “undocumented” NA out there who passed as white or who actually had relationships with whites. Sorry, but after about 400 years purity isn’t going to fly anymore. And if she believed her relatives, it’s not surprising.

  140. 140
    Ken Shabby says:

    @debit:

    Exactly what she’s doing. It’s not one punch, it’s 15 rounds. There is no magical formula except beating his ass like a drum/rented mule/boat/car….

    This is a long fight and worth doing. I think that orange slob will fall like a sack of cow flop.

    That’s the answer. The losers that drive you crazy will either come around or fuck off somewhere to their miseries. Fuck em.

    Even shitty rednecks recognize a fighter. Takes longer than the rest of us but, if there’s one thing they respect, it’s Strong Daddies, er – Mommies.

  141. 141

    It’s just bizarre that the president of the US spends his time on stuff like this. Doesn’t he have things to do?

  142. 142
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gwangung:

    They just gave Trump cover to continue to call Warren a liar, so they unfortunately have removed themselves from the debate. Now Trump gets to say, See, Native Americans say that Warren is a liar, so I get to keep calling her a liar!

    As I said below, I understand that there is a difference between ancestry/DNA and membership/affiliation. Unfortunately, Trump doesn’t give a shit about that and will continue to encourage his fans to say racist things and make racist gestures towards Warren because now he feels he’s been given permission to do so by American Indian activists.

  143. 143

    @Mnemosyne: Let me say it differently than I did in the top post.

    Warren’s DNA is not an issue for Americans. Our citizenship and fitness for office does not depend on our ancestry. Claiming that it does is racist. Period.

    That is the reframing. I am not claiming, as some in this thread seem to believe, that saying that once would shut Trump up. It won’t. She said that once, along with the Pocahontas story, and we see the result. But making the DNA test public was caving to Trump and had the potential to offend some Native Americans.

    Trump’s message is more than that she’s a liar. It appeals to his racist and misogynist supporters at a much more basic level than logic.

    And for others in this thread, I agree that this is a non-issue. But Warren’s making the DNA test public has revived it. And Trump is making the best of it on Twitter. How this plays in the larger public, I have no idea. I would be happy to let it go now, but I’m not in control of the narrative.

    ETA: If Warren wanted to seize the narrative, she would have had to pound it EVERY time Trump said the word “Pocahontas.”

  144. 144
    magurakurin says:

    @debit:

    What should she do?

    whatever she can I guess. She never should have agreed to let Harvard put her down as a minority hire in 1996. That is her original sin. No coming back from it.
    Also too..she voted for a lot of Republican charlatans that I easily saw through.

    whatever. Warren can do what she thinks is best. She seems to have a good heart now, that’s for sure.
    but,
    I’m waiting on President Harris.

  145. 145
    debit says:

    @Mnemosyne: And yet according to Yahoo News he just did it again. He cannot be shamed. It’s no secret that his method of dealing with any problem is to double down and smear his opponent with his own feces. It’s like the Lock Her Up chants. No one cares that he’s whipping up a mob to lock up someone whose only “crime” is that he doesn’t like them. You would think our media would be horrified, but they broadcast it without a care in the world because ratings. When he starts the public executions you can bet all the networks will fight over who gets the best camera angle.

  146. 146

    @Leto:

    I’m in the camp of punch’em in the throat and talk over them.

    This is good too.

  147. 147

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    It’s just bizarre that the president of the US spends his time on stuff like this. Doesn’t he have things to do?

    Another good attack.

  148. 148
    PJ says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: You’re right, this whole Warren thing is just a distraction from Executive Time.

  149. 149
    The Moar You Know says:

    What could she say or do that would shame Trump enough to shut him up

    @debit: He uses “Pocahontas”, she uses “Limpdick Donnie”. Every time. The MSM will howl to the heavens about civility, but as Trump has already proven, nobody gives a shit. She gets a ton of free press in the bargain.

    No need to do what he asks, just punch back harder.

  150. 150
    Barb 2 says:

    The various “tribes” are being darn right sh*tty about the fact that so many of us have Native American ancestors. Thing is many of us are mutts and the individuals all decked out in native finery standing along side the evil bastards are the ones who were stupid.

    Thing is that the “tribes” weren’t the ones during the Dawes commission era who decided which dark folks got money from forced resettlement of the Indigenous people from the east to Oklahoma etc. Thousands of individuals were left off of the rolls by white male recorders. This was a very nasty part of the history of our country. Vast numbers of Native Americans didn’t want to be identified as “Indians”. The racism of that era was deadly. Newspapers were mostly biased against Native Americans or anyone “half-breed”. My grand mother bragged about her Colonial ancestors but never mentioned her Native American grandmother. She was typical of that time.

    When I investigated my family tree discovered that three generations back I had Jewish ancestors who ended up in Maryland and then migrated to the midwest. Quakers married Indians and there were all sorts of mixed up European marriages as well. Senator Professor Warren’s background is typical of millions of Americans.

    The most important part of the video is that she has exposed Trump for the lying fraud we all know he is. He does not have the one million dollars and he still hasn’t turned over his tax returns. Warren also told people who watch the video who she is. She showed us who she is and she showed Trump as a liar and flim flam creep.

    The tribes are making tools of themselves for Trump etc rather than we!coming Warren as a powerful spokesperson on behalf of the various recognized tribes.

    It is easy to see Trump’s word is worthless. Now Warren can make another video showing the challenge and then now the Orange fart responds.

    The tribal leaders who joined the GOP in this crap are the fools.

    No matter what Warren does, she will be attacked – any strength will be used against her.

    Where is the million for Warren’s choice of charity and were are his tax returns? No wonder Trump went bankrupt 6 times and needed the Russian mafia to bail him out. (Read “House of Trump, House of Putin” to see how Trump plays the mobs rules.)

  151. 151
    Ken Shabby says:

    @germy:

    I think it’s by the reach around.

  152. 152
    mere mortal says:

    I disagree.

    This is a bite-sized, unassailable demonstration that Trump is a liar who doesn’t pay his debts.

    It’s easy, it’s short, and it is undeniable, the idiot’s own words damn him.

    He made a bet on video. She won. He won’t pay.

    He’s a liar and a cheat.

  153. 153
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Warren’s DNA is not an issue for Americans. Our citizenship and fitness for office does not depend on our ancestry. Claiming that it does is racist. Period.

    Unfortunately, that plays exactly into Trump’s portrayal of Warren as a white woman who lied about having Cherokee ancestry to get ahead and benefit from affirmative action. To Trump and his supporters, saying, “It’s racist to claim that ancestry has anything to do with anyone’s qualifications,” means that she’s admitting that she lied about her ancestry to get ahead and is trying to downplay the fact that she lied.

    I understand that Warren put her foot down in a spot that is very, very sensitive for American Indians. I really do. But I also don’t think there was any other way for her to show that the Republicans were lying about her.

  154. 154
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @zhena gogolia: And I’m talking a tenured professor.
    Damn. I used to think it was just the cult of the presidency– if Obama would just call them assholes, The People would see….!–, which goes beyond the broad left but I think we’re more invested in top-down politics than the right. But the belief in the power of theatrics is a real problem for our side

  155. 155
    debit says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I’m not in control of the narrative.

    You’re, if not a part of it, at the very least boosting the signal. Seriously. You said it’s not your intent, but this entire post could have just as well been titled ELIZABETH WARREN, WHAT A LOSER!

  156. 156
    Ken Shabby says:

    @magurakurin:

    “I’m waiting on President Harris.”

    Happily vote for either. D, in event. DNC and all cannot afford to screw this up this time.

  157. 157
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    on topic, I agree with Pierce: there was no good way to handle this, and you can ask Presidents Kerry and Clinton how the “ignore them” strategy works. Though I don’t know why it couldn’t wait a month.

    Also:

    jamelle g-g-ghoulie 👻 @ jbouie
    your daily reminder that most voters have no idea what’s happening on twitter

  158. 158
    Leto says:

    @debit:

    Donald J. Trump✔@realDonaldTrump
    Thank you to the Cherokee Nation for revealing that Elizabeth Warren, sometimes referred to as Pocahontas, is a complete and total Fraud!
    8:24 AM – Oct 16, 2018

    Television/radio/internet ads: Even the Cherokee Nation knows Elizabeth Warren is a liar!

    Also if the Cherokee Nation’s records are as complete and thorough as they say (“whose ancestors are well documented and whose heritage is proven”), then they should be able to clear this up. Look up her great, great, however many grandparents back and show it. If their records are that complete, they should have no problem proving this.

    @The Moar You Know: That’s not her. That would be a complete deviation from her character. She’s not going to go play in the pig shit, nor should she have to do that. Suggesting that is asinine.

  159. 159
    Ken Shabby says:

    @debit:

    It’s a conversation not Final Jeopardy.

    This is a long fight. It’s …ok. And, Cheryl’s on your team.

  160. 160
    debit says:

    @The Moar You Know: Really. That’s all you have? He had an affair with a porn star and lied about it. No consequences. She calls him a limp dick and he’ll call her a sandpaper snatch. And the media will accuse HER of coarsening the discourse.

  161. 161
    Amir Khalid says:

    @gwangung:
    This has long been a wound in the chest* for America’s native peoples, hasn’t it? I don’t see a way to talk about this part of Warren’s (or any white American’s) family history without opening up that wound. It should never be brought up frivolously or as a political tactic, as it was this time. (Warren, for her part, has been scrupulous all her life about not exploiting it for personal or political gain, and I think that’s all she could have done here.)

    The people who brought this up in the first place are not known for sensitivity towards others’ feelings or regard for others’ welfare. It is important to keep one’s recriminations aimed at the right target.

    *Malay simile

  162. 162
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @germy:

    Thanks for the correction. I knew (and should have specified) that I was paraphrasing.

    Not even sure whether LBJ actually said it. It’s so perfectly him, it’s probably apocryphal.

  163. 163
    randy khan says:

    @Ken Shabby:

    The order was not necessarily meant to be preference. I’m a big fan of Gillibrand, but I also know more about her than Harris.

  164. 164
    germy says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: No, your quote was correct. My quote was something I made up. I was sort of parodying LBJ’s statement.

  165. 165
    Gravenstone says:

    @Jeffro: I have contended before that it’s likely Fred constantly derided little Donnie for an obvious lack of smarts. That’s why attacking the IQ of others is one of his go to things. His way of getting back at dad. ‘See, I really am smart. This other person is the stupid one!’. If someone attacked his intelligence openly and directly, he’d flip.

  166. 166
    Tim C. says:

    Not sure this matters. 100% of the people who care about this at all are already voting. It *MIGHT* help to widely share the double clip of Trump making the offer of a million then going back on it. But we really need to stop caring what “Uncle Liberty” thinks.

  167. 167

    @Mnemosyne:

    Unfortunately, that plays exactly into Trump’s portrayal of Warren as a white woman who lied about having Cherokee ancestry to get ahead and benefit from affirmative action.

    This is more than I would infer. And I would hammer the racist theme whatever the Republicans did. Candidates for political office call each other liars all the time. Trying to prove the opposite in extenso is a waste of time. Say it once, refer back as necessary. But don’t lead with it.

    Warren has a particular problem in that early statement. She should have disowned it as a dumb thing to do a long time ago and gone from there.

  168. 168
    Leto says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Unfortunately, that plays exactly into Trump’s portrayal of Warren as a white woman who lied about having Cherokee ancestry to get ahead and benefit from affirmative action.

    Scott Brown, and the GoP, were doing this in her 2012 Senate bid. This has been going on for over six years now. The GoP continually attacks her on this, it’s been non-stop.

  169. 169
    randy khan says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    She is running fpr re-election right now. Why is everyone on the Democratic side making the automatic assumption that thia is a pre-ad for 2020 and not an ad for the election she is currently running in?

    Maybe because the RCP polling average has her up by about 25 points in her re-election campaign. That election is not in doubt.

  170. 170
    PJ says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: She didn’t revive it. It’s brought up all the time by Republicans. She is in a race for reelection next month. It wasn’t going away, and it wasn’t going to go away. I don’t know where you get the idea that Republicans are using it to say that someone needs to have or not have some genetic component to be fit for office. The framing of it by Republicans has always been that she lied in order to take advantage of affirmative action, because she was too weak a candidate to be selected on her academic merits, just like everyone who is non-white who succeeds at X was weak on the merits but was only promoted due to affirmative action. It appeals to them doubly because it allows them to smear minorities (because everyone knows they can’t succeed without special set-asides) and to smear this particular candidate because she couldn’t hack it as a white person and would stoop to lying about her heritage to get ahead.

    Republicans are never going to stop attacking her as long as she continues to advocate for working people. Warren’s response yesterday gives the lie to the “he said/she said” narrative, and shows she will continue to fight.

  171. 171
    magurakurin says:

    @Ken Shabby:

    I’d vote for Warren so fast I’d get ballot burn. In a New York second. But in the primary she is far from my first choice. And I thought the video was good.

    but she’s kind of in a box canyon here. I wish her luck.

    but my money is still on Harris.

  172. 172
    WaterGirl says:

    @gene108: Someone here spoked to that issue last night, with speculation being that some administrator probably asked her to do this somewhere along the line in order to boost there diversity stats, and she figured “what could it hurt?”

  173. 173
    guachi says:

    The fact that Trump is already weasling out on his million dollar bet tells me Warren is right and hand-wringer Rofer is wrong.

    Trump is on the defensive and Warren put him there.

  174. 174

    @debit: I had not seen this point made, and it’s an important one. I see Democrats (and others) taking up Trump’s frame all too often, and it drives me crazy. It’s a beginner-level strategic mistake. We’ve got to stop doing it. So I said it.

    I don’t see Warren as a loser, and I don’t think that’s the message of this thread. But given Trump’s tweets this morning, it’s clear she got something wrong. So let’s get that right going forward. Continuing to provoke that kind of response is not a winning strategy.

    I like Warren’s positions on many issues, although my basic preference is to see those positions in someone younger for the Democratic candidate for 2020. If she gets that job, I’ll support her.

  175. 175
    Bobby Thomson says:

    She did say it was bigotry, Cheryl. She did.

    But this is one of the reasons I wasn’t keen on Warren. This was always going to be an emails-level distraction no matter what she did. None of her options were good. Reporters don’t like her and they aren’t going to like her. No, it’s not fair. But it’s the kind of thing that would have ended years ago if it was going to end.

  176. 176
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @enplaned: FDR was a great example – as a paid-up member of the wealthy elite, he knew only too well what his kind were like, and enjoyed the hell out of beating then at every turn. LBJ was a shocking human being, but ruthlessly effective in getting his way because he was, you know, utterly ruthless.

    FDR, LBJ and BHO all came into office with (inter)national chaos creating a desire for change and stability, and LBJ had the ghost of a national martyr standing behind him. The first two still operated in a world where (white) people saw the government as a tool they could leverage against the powerful; with and after Nixon and Reagan, those same white people were taught to believe government was part of a conspiracy against them in favor of Them. FDR frequently excluded African-Americans from the New Deal to win Southern support, and LBJ needed the old, racist urban machines as much as he needed the inspiration of the growing civil rights movement.
    The fact is the two partys’ bases and leaners respond to different stimuli, and smash mouth doesn’t deliver the votes for Dems the way it does for Rs

  177. 177
    randy khan says:

    @Emma:

    She’s 69. My opinion on this is not gendered. (Indeed, while I think she’s older than I’d like, I think Joe Biden is just too old for the job.) On the whole I want newer blood, and it’s also clear that the Presidency takes a toll on people who take the job seriously, so at some point age does matter.

  178. 178
    Ken Shabby says:

    @randy khan:

    Can you tell me more? Because, I don’t. Other than buzz –

  179. 179

    @PJ:

    I don’t know where you get the idea that Republicans are using it to say that someone needs to have or not have some genetic component to be fit for office.

    This is the definition of changing the narrative. It’s not a polite debate, it’s tossing an accusation back at them. And the racism is baked into Trump’s tweets, so it’s implied.

  180. 180
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @germy:

    Ah! Well, I was working from memory, and they both sound authentically Johnsonian.

  181. 181
    Leto says:

    @WaterGirl: She id’d as Native before Harvard (1995). She was identifying as NA since at least 1986.

  182. 182
    eric says:

    We want to Dems to fight back.,,,unless they fight back in ways we disagree with, in which case they are short sighted. It is always easier to “make” a decision after it has been made. It is the hallmark of nearly all in-game and after-game sports commentary. “Gutsy call going for it and making it there, gene;” “Gene, what a disaster going for it there,” blah blah. the next election campaign an eeyore runs will be his or hers first.

  183. 183

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I see Democrats (and others) taking up Trump’s frame all too often, and it drives me crazy. It’s a beginner-level strategic mistake. We’ve got to stop doing it.

    When we stop doing it, the press stops reporting it. Remember Obama’s healthcare speaches? Hillary’s policy speeches? If you do, congratulations, because about 1% of the population ever knew about them at all, and most of those forgot because they never heard about them again. Democrats refuse to let Republicans set the terms all the time. It disappears into the void, unnoticed.

  184. 184
    Barbara says:

    Warren isn’t my first choice as a candidate and I guess this is one reason why — it’s like emails all over again and her inability to put it behind her is a problem even if it shouldn’t be. There had to be a better way to deal with this than releasing DNA. I despair that we will ever transcend the power of race and racism to poison our political framework.

  185. 185
    Seanly says:

    There is no winning with Trump and our corporate media. Democratic candidates are supposed to be as pure as the driven snow while since we all know that Trump is a liar, con man, and two-bit (yet cowardly) thug, he’s never held to account for anything. Warren shot herself badly in the foot here. While I admire her position on many topics, I don’t think she can be President. She’s released the DNA test, the Cherokee nation threw shade on it, and Trump moved the goalposts. He was never going to pay, will never pay, and will never be held accountable for anything in his miserable life.

  186. 186

    @Frankensteinbeck: Then we’ve got to figure out a way to get it noticed. Taking the Republicans’ frame isn’t it.

  187. 187
    PJ says:

    @Bobby Thomson: Every Democratic candidate is going to be smeared by Republicans. If you think the way they attack Warren is bad, just wait till you see what they have in store for Harris and Booker.

  188. 188

    Okay, y’all. I’ve got some other things to do IRL. Will be back in an hour or two.

  189. 189
    Ken Shabby says:

    @Gravenstone:

    I remember that during the Clinton debates. At one point, Clinton had him just about ready to POP and…she let him up.

    My wife and I howled immediately and in unison. And, she’s the quiet, intelligent one…

    That slob is a walking number of targets the size of an ass on a cow.

  190. 190
    WaterGirl says:

    I don’t know whether this video from Elizabeth Warren is a great idea or not, but I do know that we could all learn a lot from Senator Professor Elizabeth Warren.

    She first caught my eye in her role with the bailout, but I knew she was something special when everyone was baiting her to be outraged with Barack Obama for deciding not to nominate her to lead the consumer protection bureau. The baited and baited and baited her, and she said “I’m saving the rocks in my pockets for Republicans”.

    How about if we save the rocks in our pockets for the enemy?

    Also, when you damned if you do and damned if you don’t, then you have the luxury of doing what you think is right. EW felt this was the right thing for her to do, so I’d rather move on than have a food fight about whether this was a smart move or whether this was a mistake.

  191. 191
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Barbara:

    I guess this is one reason why — it’s like emails all over again and her inability to put it behind her is a problem even if it shouldn’t be.

    I say again, this is a loss only if you feel like you lost.

  192. 192

    @randy khan: I agree. I want someone younger. OTOH, I’d sure vote for her.

  193. 193
    Brachiator says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Coming late to the thread. Great post, although I think she had to address this in some way, just as Obama decided to deal with the birther nonsense.

    Most of Trump’s rebuttal is nonsense.

    The one claim that dangles is the one that asserts that Warren tried to game the system by falsely claiming to be a person of color. Trump supporters resent affirmative action and doubly resent anyone who uses it, even if they deserve it.

    Warren can still go on the offensive with this, in any number of ways, as you suggest and using other attacks.

    It’s also clear that Trump’s people spent some time working on a detailed response to Warren. It also is typically sloppy and contradictory and gives Warren all kinds of room for a counter attack.

    I think she may have afdressed the affirmative action claim before, but she needs to shut the door on it.

  194. 194
    WaterGirl says:

    @Tractarian: In 2007, each one of my friends — even if they liked Barack Obama — was absolutely certain that Barack was going to make some rookie error that would sink his candidacy. Well, they weren’t right, even after the chickens coming home to roost debacle.

    Let’s not take our eye off the ball.

  195. 195
    Leto says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    it’s clear she got something wrong

    What she got wrong was believing her family. Believing her monther and aunts who told her this. She should’ve gone full Trumpov and thrown their asses under the bus as soon as it became inconvenient. That’s the lesson, right?

    What was she supposed to do, starting in 2012, to move this forward? What was the correct play here? Ignore Trumpov, lets go back to 2012 and go from there. As the GoP has continually hurled this at her for six plus years, what was she supposed to do? Lets look at the strategic view here on how she was supposed to honor her family and stop the racist, misogynistic, and privilege attacks against her.

  196. 196

    1. I am not going to double guess EW.
    2. And pay attention to what anti-D trolls have to say either, whether they are in the BJ comment section,like Hitless Wonder and Bobby Thomson or the Giant Orange Troll with little hands in the WH.
    3. Focus on 2018 first.
    4. EW may have done this for this senate race too. There is an Indian troll going around in a bus saying that better a real Indian than a fake one.
    5. Chill.

  197. 197
    debit says:

    I actually have to work today, so I need to step back from angrily refreshing and picking fights. But @Cheryl Rofer: if you can tell us how to stop everything being framed by the Republicans, I’m willing to listen. I just don’t think you can. Out of all the awful things Trump has done, among the most recent is mocking a victim of sexual assault. Where’s the media blow back? He’s said that it’s okay for other countries to assassinate people as long as they don’t do it here. :crickets: But remember that one time when Obama said it was kind of messed up that a cop arrested a black man for entering his own home? Endless outrage and media coverage until he was forced to grovel and invite the shitty cop to have a beer.

    That’s why I’m so angry. The deck is already stacked against us. It hard enough already. Do we have to make it even harder for the folks on our side?

  198. 198

    @debit: We can and should support our candidates over the media and RW noise, which is sometimes indistinguishable.

  199. 199
    trollhattan says:

    The radio piece I heard with the Cherokee Nation secretary of state this morning was really, really odd and has me wondering about their political entanglements. He was a lot harder on Warren than Trump, claiming victimhood. There’s more here than meets the eye, but I’m way too far removed from Oklahoma politics to make an educated guess.

    The long knives are out for Warren–Hillary redux. Whatever she says or does is henceforth suspect.

  200. 200
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    It’s just bizarre that the president of the US spends his time on stuff like this. Doesn’t he have things to do?

    Yeah, this. On the other hand, this campaign ad does not necessarily write itself.

    “Doesn’t the President have things to do? You know, like fuck up our foreign policy by sucking up to Saudi Arabia and Russia? Fuck up the economy by pushing tax breaks for the wealthy? Fuck up the judicial system by pushing unqualifiedRWNJs? You know, *important shit* to fuck up with his ignorance, racism, and general malice? Oh, wait…”

  201. 201
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @PJ: yes, everyone is going to get smeared. No, everyone hasn’t failed to neutralize a smear effectively over the course of six years.

  202. 202
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @schrodingers_cat: fuck you.

  203. 203
    Brachiator says:

    I have been looking at some of the responses from Native American journalists and the Cherokee nation to Warren’s DNA tests results and think that Warren only erred in not being politically smart and going to them before she released the results. These groups seemed to need some assurances and comfort. Fuck it, they needed some ass kissing.

    Instead they have played into Trump’s hand and hurt Democrats. Trump hates Native Americans as much as he hates all other nonwhite people. And any Native Americans who think that they will get fair play from the GOP are sadly deluded.

    One Native American journalist writing in CNN notes that he agrees with Warren on most issues, but is not happy with her past silence on Native issues. But what is his unhappiness going to get him.

    And while I understand the Cherokee Nation complaints, Warren is not applying for membership in the tribe. Their rules have nothing to do with science or ancestry.

    So again, the only place I see an error is in Warren not consulting various native groups in advance. On the other hand, these groups that bash Warren are being foolish and narrow and don’t seem to recognize the deep danger that Trump represents to the country.

  204. 204
    Aardvark Cheeselog says:

    I did not read the whole thread so shoot me if somebody already made this point.

    Warren’s move could be sensible if it’s intended as preparation for working the refs. If it gets used as ammunition for slamming any reporter who quotes Trump as though he might have something to say that’s worth listening to. It’s not about convincing Trump to do anything, or getting any Trump supporter to believe anything they don’t already believe, it should be about making journalists confront the fact that by talking about Trump as anything other than a crazy lying fool, they are being objectively pro-Trump.

    I’m sure it would be hopeless to try getting the media to own their role in getting Trump elected in the first place, but it might be possible to make some of them feel shame for continuing to help him wreak havoc.

  205. 205
    Elizabelle says:

    @debit: You are my spirit animal this morning.

    Could we, like, talk about how early voting is up? Cuz that’s kind of good news, and it’s actually something somewhat in our control. Plus, great to get the word out. Vote early. Bank that vote.

    Nancy Pelosi!

  206. 206
    SFAW says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    4. EW may have done this for this senate race too. There is an Indian troll going around in a bus saying that better a real Indian than a fake one.

    Highly unlikely. She’s up by 20-plus points in all the polls. And the “she’s going to run in 2020 and leave the Senate” meme was something the Rethugs have tried — unsuccessfully — to gain traction with. But releasing the results seems to give credence to Rethug claims, not that it woill cause any Dems or Independents to suddenly say “Gee, she wants the White House? I guess I’ll have to vote R then, dagnabit!”

  207. 207
    WaterGirl says:

    @Leto: I did not know that.

    Still, that doesn’t change things for me. She grew up with the narrative that her dad’s family didn’t want him to marry her mother because she was Indian. That was how she saw herself as much as I saw myself as someone whose parents owned a neighborhood bar and I was from Chicago.

    So let’s say I run for office and then suddenly I’m called a liar because I was actually born and raised in the closest suburb TO Chicago, but I wasn’t born in the city proper. It just doesn’t matter. It’s a distinction without a difference.

    That’s how stupid this whole discussion is.

    At 21, I was recounting to a friend how my grandmother had been hit by lightning when the truth hit me like a lightning bolt. She hadn’t been hit by lightning; she was senile. (what it was called back then) Until that moment, the hit by lightning story was as much truth to me as that the sun sets at night and comes up in the day.

    People should stop second guessing EW on this.

  208. 208
    Emma says:

    @trollhattan: People sometimes shoot themselves in the foot for very good reasons.

  209. 209
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    OT: among other things, I… don’t think this is smart

    Donald J. Trump @ realDonaldTrump
    “Federal Judge throws out Stormy Danials lawsuit versus Trump. Trump is entitled to full legal fees.” @FoxNews Great, now I can go after Horseface and her 3rd rate lawyer in the Great State of Texas. She will confirm the letter she signed! She knows nothing about me, a total con!

    Horseface will confirm that she signed the NDA I paid her for after the affair we had including the night she spanked me with the magazine with my face on it?

  210. 210
    B.B.A. says:

    Man, if we’re trying to find a candidate Trump can’t turn into a meme we might as well run Michael Avenatti and admit we’re just as intellectually bankrupt as the GOP.

    (I’m still a Gillibot.)

  211. 211
    Corner Stone says:

    @Bobby Thomson: “Boy, that escalated quickly.”

  212. 212
    Julia Seto says:

    I’m not a politician or political strategist, nor have I ever been cool or cool-adjacent so I don’t have good answers for this, but I do know that in high profile elections, the persons running matter to a wide portion of the electorate (none of whom frequent this blog) more than party or views. For this, I go to my teenaged son who is NOT one of those super woke commendable high achievement teenagers–far from it.

    Obama=coolest president ever. Not because of his views or policies, but because, grading on a curve, he’s cool like a celebrity is cool–a source of cool memes.
    Trump=not as cool as Obama, but really funny in a nasty way.
    Hillary=tragically uncool–still dying over “Pokemon go to the polls”.
    Bernie=still cooler than Hillary.
    Mitt Romney=his mom made him run for president, which is not cool (I don’t even know where the kids got this story, but they repeat it like it’s true)
    Ted Cruz=Mainly remembered for his scary Churchill impression captured on Youtube–hard to believe he’s a real person, he’s so uncool

    So, you know, ignore this factor at your peril, especially in a race that is otherwise fairly balanced. I don’t know where EW finds her “cool”, but if she doesn’t find it, she won’t go far as a presidential candidate.

  213. 213
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Bobby Thomson: “fuck you” is your response to s-c’s post? Which contained nothing but some common-sensical rebuttals to the wailing about the person who is, after all, *her* Senator? In the words of the late, great, George Carlin: *Unfuck* you. Apologize and then take your infantile butt-hurt somewhere else.

  214. 214
    Brachiator says:

    @trollhattan: I agree with you. The representative from the Cherokee Nation either does not see the big picture or is being paid off by Republican goons.

    Perhaps Native American leaders want to jealously control all asoects of tribal membership and want to slam the door on genetic testing. This would be a waste of time since these tests could never prove a tribal link.

    In any event this stupidly plays into the hands of the Republicans. But this has happened before, when Native American groups play into the racist delusions of white conservatives.

  215. 215
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I see Democrats (and others) taking up Trump’s frame all too often, and it drives me crazy.

    I’m going to be that jerk for a minute: you just did the exact same thing.

    Take a look at Trump’s tweets. He has now moved the goalposts to claim that Warren said she was a member of the Cherokee Nation, which is something she has NEVER said. She has always said that she had a great-great-grandmother who was a Cherokee but who was not on the Dawson Rolls.

    As soon as she proved that with DNA, Trump immediately moved the goalposts and claimed that she said something she never actually said. And you bought into it and agreed that it was a mistake for Warren to bring this up because Trump immediately told a new lie about her.

    Physician, heal thyself. 👩‍⚕️

  216. 216

    @Miss Bianca: Thanks. She may not be my first choice for President but I have a sign out for her in my yard for this election. I have her back. I really don’t care about her ancestry. I care about what she does.

  217. 217

    @Mnemosyne: Cheryl Rofer and JGC are ex Republicans, the latent R in them falls for R memes, without even realizing it. Its just my theory any way.

  218. 218
    Corner Stone says:

    @Emma:

    People sometimes shoot themselves in the foot for very good reasons.

    I’m interested to hear any example you may have?

  219. 219
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @Miss Bianca: I guess you missed the ad hominem? Fuck you, too.

  220. 220
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Stormy Daniels
    Stormy Daniels Retweeted Donald J. Trump
    Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present your president. In addition to his…umm…shortcomings, he has demonstrated his incompetence, hatred of women and lack of self control on Twitter AGAIN! And perhaps a penchant for bestiality. Game on, Tiny.

  221. 221
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Leto:

    Well, this is the tricky part: she has always said that she had a great-great-grandmother who was Cherokee but was not registered with the Cherokee Nation. As far as anyone has ever been able to tell, she always treated it as a family story and never applied for Native American scholarships or said on a job application that she was Native American. It was a colorful story about her family’s past that — surprise! — does seem to be true based on DNA testing.

    The Republicans have taken her family story and turned it into a story about a white woman faking Native American ancestry to get admitted to college and to get jobs when the most she ever did was let Harvard include a line about her ancestry in a faculty directory AFTER she was hired.

  222. 222
    brantl says:

    What she should do, is take that scientific proof to court, and TAKE the million from him.

  223. 223

    @Bobby Thomson:

    But this is one of the reasons I wasn’t keen on Warren. This was always going to be an emails-level distraction no matter what she did. None of her options were good. Reporters don’t like her and they aren’t going to like her. No, it’s not fair. But it’s the kind of thing that would have ended years ago if it was going to end.

    You were concern trolling using Republican talking points.
    Truth or ad hominem, I will let people decide for themselves.

  224. 224
    Brachiator says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    It’s just my theory anyway

    Odd theory. I don’t agree. Republican and Democrat are just political labels, not states of being.

    ETA. I agree with other points you have made here about the importance of supporting candidates. Coming late to the thread and still reading through various comments.

  225. 225
    SFAW says:

    @Corner Stone:

    “Boy, that escalated quickly.”

    I’m half-expecting a post in the not-too-distant future, consisting solely of the “perceived Eeyores” and the “anti-Eeyores” saying/yelling/screaming “FUCK YOU” at each other. Alain may need to write some code to allow them to increase their font size to 36-point, just for that purpose.

    Big-Endians vs Little-Endians was sandbox compared to that.

  226. 226
    DHD says:

    @Brachiator: The thing is, “tribes” (which I guess is the US legal terminology) are sovereign nations, so at an official level they don’t care about American politics. This may be illogical since it has a large impact on them, but, well, it is what it is. Opinions may differ among individual Native Americans, who like everybody else have a diverse range of opinions on many things.

    I think it’s possible to admire Elizabeth Warren and still think that taking the bait with this DNA test was incredibly stupid and insensitive. I guess cultural/political sensitivities are different on either side of the border but no Canadian politician in their right mind would have even entertained the possibility of this, let alone made a campaign-style video of it. Feel free to google “Joseph Boyden” if you want to go down that particular rabbit hole. (yes, he is not a politician)

    This is notwithstanding the fact that every statement she has made has been factually correct, e.g. tribal citizenship is one thing while heritage is another, such claims are common in Oklahoma and probably true, etc, etc. Her actions in this case belie all these statements by giving credence to the racist notion that DNA is somehow relevant to one’s cultural heritage or belonging to a nation.

    The fact that tribal governments also play into this by accepting the ahistorical concept of blood quantum in determining citizenship is actually also beside the point, because, to reiterate, they are sovereign nations. To belabor the analogy even more, plenty of European countries have similarly retrograde and racist citizenship laws, and we can disapprove, but that energy is better spent preventing Stephen Miller from revoking the 14th amendment…

  227. 227
    dnfree says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Oh, my right-wing Facebook friends are all over it, still with the “Fauxahontas” and the rejection by the Cherokee and other tribes.

  228. 228
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Bobby Thomson: What a tiresome creature you are. If you’re not a troll, you’re the next closest thing – a Dem/Doom-monger. There, I guess I’ve perpetuated an ad hominem attack on you as well, or perhaps “ad trolliem” would be more apt. Quel horreur.

  229. 229
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:
    Can’t the person being abused just simply kill the abuser? I don’t know what that would look like in the metaphor.

  230. 230
    dnfree says:

    @brantl: For some reason no one is going back and looking at the entirety of Trump’s challenge. It has two parts: 1) take a DNA test, 2) that proves you’re an Indian. She has not proven she’s an Indian, nor could she with a DNA test. Indian tribes have their own criterion. She has established that somewhere back in her lineage there is probably a Native American ancestor. That doesn’t prove she’s an Indian.

  231. 231

    @Brachiator: In this country R party affiliation is closer to tribal affiliation than based on rational choice at least for people who are not 1%.

  232. 232
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Witlessblunder: Another fucking imbecile heard from. Your only hope of making the world a better place is to drop dead.

    The rest of you weepy hand-wringers should stop whining & start punching back. Especially against those “nice people” you know who support Trump. If they support Trump, they’re not nice people – period. Even if they’re your parents.

  233. 233
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Bobby Thomson:
    LOL you got called the fuck out

  234. 234
    SFAW says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷:

    Can’t the person being abused just simply kill the abuser?

    Not if the abused person is non-white or a female (or both).

  235. 235
    WaterGirl says:

    Are we having the wrong conversations about Trump?

    As background:
    I really like the approach of a couple of books: Crucial Conversations and Crucial Confrontations. They talk about making sure you are having the right conversation.

    Your employee is late for work today? Have a conversation about being late.
    Your employee has a pattern of being late? Talk about the pattern of being late, not why they were late today.
    Your employee has a pattern of being late that you have discussed before? Talk about the lack of trust because you can’t count on them.

    When we’re talking about DNA tests or facts, we’re not addressing the real issues. We need to be talking about the patterns. All. The. Time. Every question, we come back and talk about the pattern.

    It doesn’t matter that you were late today because your alarm didn’t go off, you missed the bus, the bus was late, your dog peed in the house, etc. That’s fine for a one-off, but that’s not what this is. Let’s stop getting distracted with the details.

    You’re always late and I can’t count on you and it makes me not trust you.

    That’s the level of conversation we need to be having when we talk to people and when Dems talk to the press. Even on twitter, that has to be the message.

  236. 236
    Mnemosyne says:

    @trollhattan:

    As I understand it, many American Indians who have a tribal affiliation have a long-standing resentment against white people who claim on flimsy grounds that they had a Native American ancestor. It’s apparently a fairly common thing for otherwise racist white people in Western states to claim, and they usually use it as a weapon to say that American Indians shouldn’t get special treatment and they’re the proof.

    I think many people in those native communities view Warren as one of those racist white ladies claiming native ancestry and they don’t really care what her DNA says one way or the other. She’s not one of them, so they don’t care about Trump’s racist attacks on her.

    IMO, it’s short-sighted on their part to sneer at DNA because DNA testing is not going to go away, but I think that’s the situation.

  237. 237
    NickM says:

    Fuck it, we should just do what the Republicans do. Call Trump something like “President Shrimpdick” and never call him anything else. It would drive him crazy and there wouldn’t be a goddamn thing he could do about it. Would it degrade our discourse? Have you seen our discourse lately?

  238. 238
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Bobby Thomson:
    There’s nothing wrong with ad hominems so long as they’re not your sole argument.

  239. 239
    Mnemosyne says:

    @dnfree:

    For some reason no one is going back and looking at the entirety of Trump’s challenge. It has two parts: 1) take a DNA test, 2) that proves you’re an Indian.

    If you really think that Trump meant that she needed to prove a tribal affiliation and not a racial affiliation, I’ve got a nice bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. Cheap.

    I think you said you’re a Canadian? I have a feeling you’re not getting the racist nuances here. Trump is claiming that Warren faked having Native American ancestry — DNA — to get ahead. Now that she has proven that, he’s moving the goalposts and claiming that what he really meant was that she needed to have a proveable tribal affiliation, not just the DNA.

    You bought into his new framing without realizing that he switched it up on you.

  240. 240
    dnfree says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: That’s what I was thinking so thanks for mentioning it. She DID take the approach of attacking the racism explicitly. And it sank like a stone as far as media coverage. But every time Trump says “Pocahontas”, there’s more media coverage. It’s like they can’t help themselves.

  241. 241
    Brachiator says:

    @dnfree: Trump’s challenge was bullshit.

  242. 242
    dnfree says:

    @Ken Shabby: Glad to see you mention Adam Schiff. I really like him and can’t figure out why he isn’t mentioned more often as a possible presidential candidate.

  243. 243
    Barbara says:

    @Brachiator: I am very sympathetic to the desire of Native Americans to have a say over their history as well as their destiny. It must be difficult approaching a level of torture to see your heritage systematically co-opted by people who are the descendants of those who first tried but failed to kill you and your culture. Even small things get to me — every time I see an episode of the Antiques Road Show with some incredibly valuable Native American object, I can’t imagine how anyone could retain the proceeds from selling it. But trying to limit people’s appropriation is probably a losing battle, and might not even be the best way to maintain control. There are people who have native ancestry who are not enrolled as tribal members. I have well-documented German heritage but that doesn’t get me anything if I were to emigrate to Germany, and having Serbian heritage doesn’t make me responsible for genocide in Bosnia. The difference between these things is that Native wounds are still open, they are still too often discriminated against (and I mean, right now, in South and North Dakota). Yet, I doubt that trying to silence people from saying they have Native ancestry will do much good.

  244. 244
    AliceBlue says:

    @Mnemosyne:
    I don’t know why the Cherokee Nation weighed in. The DNA report doesn’t even mention the Cherokee or any other tribe by name. It says she has an “unadmixed Native American ancestor” anywhere from 6-10 generatons ago.

  245. 245
    gvg says:

    I tried to post about this yesterday, but the site wouldn’t work for me then. We’ll see how this goes today.
    IMO you are mostly missing the underlying resentment issue of this story. Racist whites of a certain type, are convinced that affirmative action is still stealing all the jobs they should have had. They think companies and Universities set aside a lot of jobs for minorities and that ALL minorities get this special treatment. this is ridiculous, because there are now so many minorities (including women) in the workforce, that there would never be enough jobs set aside for them, and most workplaces I have been in had naturally acquired enough minorities to not need to hunt for more. Reality doesn’t matter, the poor little victims have decided that is why they haven’t achieved all the success they thought they should.
    Proving she is Native, doesn’t really settle this, and I am not sure what could. So I think the issue is misunderstood.
    I do think Cheryl is wrong though and she is giving into the Republican framing. In some ways the problem IMO this time is that we just don’t “get” the framing because our minds don’t work that way, so all our attempts to fight the frame, miss the target. We have multiple opinions on how to fight it based on multiple perceptions of the GOP base and each time one theory group of ours tries out their idea, and misfires, the other theory groups say no do this! That’s how we get the meme of democrats not working together. The thing is, if a certain plan worked more than once, all the rest of us could say “oh, OK” and repeat the success, but so far none have.
    It’s hard to understand whiny misfits.

  246. 246
    Brachiator says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I live in California. We are crazy. There are more independents here than Republicans. We laugh at people who narrowly cling to political tribalism or make more of it than it should be.

    This also reminds me a bit of the purity ponies who insisted that Hillary could not be authentic because she had been a Goldwater Republican as a teen or something. There ain’t no such thing as Republican or Democrat DNA.

  247. 247
    Barbara says:

    @AliceBlue: Cherokee Nation is based in Oklahoma, where Warren is from. I think they have followed this more closely for that reason. Although, really, there are many other tribal affiliates in Oklahoma. Read “Killers of the Flower Moon.” It’s a great book about the indefensible treatment of indigenous people in Oklahoma at the hands of Anglo Sooners and it provides some historical information on how Oklahoma became the state with the highest percentage of Native American residents. It wasn’t voluntary.

  248. 248
    Sherparick says:

    @MazeDancer: She should go on the offensive & call Trump the racist, tax cheat, well he that he is. The right wing media was never going to let it die, but at least you have Chuck Todd asking her if she will take a DNA test.

  249. 249
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Barbara:

    There is a weird history of white supremacists claiming Native American ancestry, so that makes the whole thing even more fraught.

    Take the strange case of The Education of Little Tree, written by an active white supremacist and segregationist who concealed his identity to write the book and even insisted that he was a different person and not the white supremacist:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Education_of_Little_Tree

    As I said, I understand why Warren is pushing all kinds of buttons for American Indians, but I don’t think that forcefully rejecting her DNA test is going to help at all.

  250. 250
    Brachiator says:

    @Barbara: I hear what you say and largely agree, but Native American leaders do themselves no favor when they play into the hands of the Republicans. Some appear to be incredibly short sighted here.

    And as I note, they have played into the hands of racists before when white conservatives play games about race and racial purity.

  251. 251
    Hitlesswonder says:

    @WaterGirl: I think this is great advice – to me it means repeatedly addressing the fact that Trump lies, not addressing the facts of each lie that gets emitted.

  252. 252

    @debit:

    if you can tell us how to stop everything being framed by the Republicans, I’m willing to listen.

    Well, then, I guess I’ve lost you.

    I didn’t claim this. I did say that we should do everything we can to impose our frame on them.

  253. 253
    dnfree says:

    @randy khan: Exactly. I’m 72 and I don’t think anyone at or near my age should be running for (or should be) president. (Yes, that included Hillary, Bernie, and Trump in 2016.) The two reasons are having the physical and mental stamina for the job, and having a younger mindset. When Obama won, I thought that was the end of presidents from my generation, and it should have been.

  254. 254

    @Brachiator:

    I have been looking at some of the responses from Native American journalists and the Cherokee nation to Warren’s DNA tests results and think that Warren only erred in not being politically smart and going to them before she released the results. These groups seemed to need some assurances and comfort. Fuck it, they needed some ass kissing.

    Yes. Not getting input from them is another rookie-level mistake.

  255. 255
    AliceBlue says:

    @Barbara: Yes. I am originally from northwest Georgia (once the heart of the Cherokee Nation) and although I am not Native, I am very familiar with the history of the Trail of Tears.

  256. 256
    thaflix says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Seriously. While ‘reframing the debate’ is a good strategy, if the left considers it a bad thing to get material evidence to prove your opponents wrong, *that’s* where we lose. This article is the sort of chickenshit bollocks that gives Democrats a bad name.

  257. 257

    @Mnemosyne: Here is what I take Trump’s frame to be

    You claimed Native American ancestry to get an advantage. Okay, take a DNA test to show you’ve really got that ancestry.

    My argument is to turn the conversation away from that frame. Producing a DNA test is responding within the frame.

    Pointing out that Trump has doubled down on his frame, and Warren’s response helped that, doesn’t constitute accepting his frame.

    Can you explain what you take his frame to be?

  258. 258
    Bonnie says:

    As a Pacific Northwest Indian, I have spent my life in what is called Indian Country. We have a joke that all you have to do is brush shoulders with a Cherokee and you will be Cherokee. The Cherokee Tribe has the lowest requirement of blood quantum for being a member. I am insulted every time president* talks about American Indians. He hates us because of the competition he received from Indian Tribes in the gambling arena.

  259. 259
    Mnemosyne says:

    @gvg:

    Racist whites of a certain type, are convinced that affirmative action is still stealing all the jobs they should have had.

    Yep. And the meme that Republicans are using against Warren is that she faked having Native American ancestry so she could game the system and get affirmative action benefits, because everyone who benefits from affirmative action lied in order to get where they are.

    Of course, Warren probably did benefit from some types of affirmative action based on her official status as a white woman, but Republicans don’t want to talk about that.

  260. 260
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @Miss Bianca: I am not a “Dem doom monger” or an anti-Dem troll.” I am not a Warren fan. There’s an enormous and obvious difference. Or did you agree that those who criticized Bush hate America?

  261. 261
    WaterGirl says:

    @Hitlesswonder: Right. While we are addressing the details of lie # 5,286, he is already composing the next 55 lies. The math is just not on our side. Not to mention that facts get dismissed out of hand by his supporters and are often ignored by the media!

    “Trump lied about this and this and this; why should I believe what he just said about that?”

    I think Dem presidential candidates had better be practicing that as much as they prep for debate questions.

    All our strong candidates will get dismissed with the Hillary treatment, if we’re not careful. We already know what it will be for Elizabeth Warren. And we have a pretty good idea what it will be for Kamala Harris (some relationship she had a million years ago).

    EVERY candidate needs to be thinking about how they will combat whatever smear and slime Trump throws at them. I think this is the way to do that, so hopefully they are already thinking along those lines. Maybe this latest dustup will be a reminder that you can’t fight shit with facts.

  262. 262
    dnfree says:

    @Mnemosyne: No, I’m not a Canadian. Worse than that–I’m a logician. In some ways I’m like Data on Star Trek. I look at the challenge Trump made and it has two parts, A and B. The “and” means that both parts must be true in order for the statement to be true. If Trump had just said he’d give a million dollars if Warren took a DNA test, all these “call him on the challenge” statements would be valid. But he didn’t. He said “I will give you a million dollars, to your favorite charity, paid for by Trump, if you take the test and it shows you’re an Indian.” A DNA test was never going to be able to “show you’re an Indian”, because of tribal rules–the best it could do was indicate some degree of Native American ancestry. So the statement was never going to be true.

    I’m from northern Illinois. I get the racial nuances. I’m just going back to the actual wording of Trump’s original challenge. This for me is like when the media promoted the “Al Gore says he invented the Internet” thing. He never said any such thing, and yet it’s now “common knowledge”.

  263. 263
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @schrodingers_cat: not a single word you quoted was a Republican talking point. Do you understand what words mean or do you just throw them around?

  264. 264
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    You white folks need to let go of the hallucination that the Democrats will find find a candidate that won’t be ruthlessly attacked by both the GOP and the MSM. It ain’t gonna happen.

  265. 265
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @WaterGirl: this.

  266. 266
    goblue72 says:

    Warren is a Massachusetts goo-goo. Its her biggest weakness. Same weakness Kerry had.

    Trump is a bully. You aren’t going to beat a bully by “going high”. You beat a bully by kicking him in the nut sack.

    The only appropriate response Warren should have provided was “Toss off, shroom dick.” And then watch an enraged Trump tweet storm for a week that his privates were not shaped like a shroom.

    And if the press gets on her for being crude, just respond with a “I apologize for my crudeness. I should have said portobello.”

  267. 267
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Pointing out that Trump has doubled down on his frame, and Warren’s response helped that, doesn’t constitute accepting his frame.

    This seems to be where we disagree. Trump didn’t “double down” on his frame. He CHANGED his frame. He moved the goalposts and changed what his demand was. Why are we not talking about making Trump stick to his own stated requirements rather than criticizing Warren for calling his bluff?

    Trump’s “frame” is that he will lie about his own lies and people will just accept it even though he’s ON VIDEO with his original challenge.

    Again: Trump changed his own challenge and yet that change is Elizabeth Warren’s fault for answering his challenge at all?

  268. 268
    Mnemosyne says:

    @dnfree:

    A DNA test was never going to be able to “show you’re an Indian”, because of tribal rules–the best it could do was indicate some degree of Native American ancestry.

    You are attributing a level of knowledge and understanding of Native American issues to Trump that he does not possess. Trump does not understand the difference between having DNA that indicates Native American ancestry and having a tribal affiliation proven by genealogical records. He only got clued in when Native Americans started to chime in, and he is now ECHOING them so he can scramble and move the goalposts.

    Again: Trump is stupid and ignorant. He was seething with rage yesterday because Warren had beaten him, and today he’s ecstatic because he found a loophole that lets him still be “right.”

  269. 269

    @Mnemosyne: I think that we are talking about different things when we use the word “frame.” He changed his demand, but not the frame that put the responsibility on Warren to come up with answers.

  270. 270
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    That’s kind of my point, though. Warren beat him. She accepted his challenge and proved him wrong. That’s why he was sulking yesterday and insisting that he would only accept a DNA test that he personally administered. It was only when his staff did some investigating that they decided that her proof didn’t count after all.

    Trump cheated. He issued a challenged and then changed the terms of the challenge AFTER Warren beat him.

    The fact that the MSM is letting him do that is not Warren’s fault, and I’m not comfortable blaming her for his cheating. The only “frame” is that Trump always has to be right and he will say or do anything to maintain that fiction.

  271. 271
    Brachiator says:

    @dnfree: Trump’s challenge had nothing to do with anything logical. And I will bet you a million bucks that Trump was not even aware of tribal rules before the Cherokee Nation jumped in.

  272. 272
    dnfree says:

    @Mnemosyne: I agree. Trump does not have that level of knowledge and understanding. In this particular case, it just so happens that the wording of his challenge worked out in his favor. It also happens, as a result, that people who say Warren met his challenge and should pay up, are incorrect. He just lucked out, perhaps, but the challenge stands as it was worded, unless someone goes back and finds a different version of the challenge that only includes taking the DNA test and having Native American ancestry.

  273. 273

    @Mnemosyne: We are talking about different things.

    Warren beat him. She accepted his challenge and proved him wrong.

    I would say yes and no. In a strict factual sense, I’ll give you “yes,” although 1/512 comes to one ancestor eight generations back. 1/32 is five generations back. That’s pretty small.

    But was the point to prove him wrong? Within his frame, that is a point, although, as you note, he moves the goalposts. In terms of the more general conversation and a campaign, it keeps a nonproductive and potentially damaging (see references to Benghazi upthread) theme alive. If the topic brought more attacks on Trump, he would drop it. This is the level I’m looking at.

  274. 274
    Mnemosyne says:

    @dnfree:

    In this particular case, it just so happens that the wording of his challenge worked out in his favor.

    Sorry, no. What I REALLY meant was … is not an acceptable claim AFTER you lose a challenge. Playing semantic games to try and wiggle out of a loss does not make your loss into a win.

    Well, actually … is not a valid argument after the challenge has been won. That’s called “moving the goalposts.” Why are you giving Trump the benefit of the doubt?

  275. 275
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    In terms of the more general conversation and a campaign, it keeps a nonproductive and potentially damaging (see references to Benghazi upthread) theme alive.

    Again, I disagree. I think Trump’s theme is that Warren is a liar who faked having Native American ancestry. Now that she proved him wrong, he’s changing his challenge after the fact so he can continue to call her a liar. His frame is, “Elizabeth Warren is a liar.”

    We already know that allowing Republicans to lie unchallenged about Democrats never ends well for Democrats, so I’m not sure why Warren was supposed to allow Trump to continue to lie about something she had easily obtainable proof of. The fact that the Cherokee Nation provided Trump with an after-the-fact way to move the goalposts he had set up does not mean it was a bad idea for Warren to prove that she is not a liar.

  276. 276

    @Mnemosyne: I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree. I think you are misreading me.

  277. 277
    eemom says:

    Late to the par-tay, but fwiw I completely agree with you. I think it was the stupidest thing she could have done.

  278. 278
    Gravenstone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Aaaannndddd ….. we’re gonna wind up with his dick pic in the Presidential alert system because of this, aren’t we? FML

  279. 279
    RobZ says:

    Warren never claimed to be a member of any tribe. She never claimed she was entitled to a membership in any tribe.
    Nevertheless, she was probably somewhat proud of her distant connection. What’s wrong with that?

    I got tossed from my tribe in my twenties for reasons still unknown to me. (I suppose
    I could have fought it, but I did not.) Nevertheless, I am also still proud of my Indian heritage.

    Cherokee Nation spokespeople can go fuck themselves.

  280. 280
    Ramalama says:

    @Bobby Thomson: Reporters don’t like her? She went on a massive offensive right before and during the Obama Admin talking about bank fraud and the financial meltdown. The talk shows loved her. Jon Stewart wanted to make out with her. It was a total charm offensive. But maybe it’s grown old on people?

  281. 281
    Gretchen says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: That’s where they’re going – it’s so small it doesn’t count..

  282. 282
    Tiny Els says:

    @the Conster: It isn’t an own goal, it’s a deal with it and say it’s in the past item. It was released when it can’t get too much air (hacking up people in Saudi embassy), and it’s dead as an issue in a future campaign. Pocahantas, whatever. Aren’t DNA box tests fun.?

  283. 283
    randy khan says:

    @Ken Shabby:

    Shallowly, I like that she curses in public. It feels authentic, which is important in Presidential races.

    She was a big no on all of Trump’s Cabinet nominees. She drew a line that I think was important there.

    She’s been a huge advocate for women on sexual assault issues, and in particular has been very tough with the armed forces on how sexual assault claims get treated. Most importantly, she’s been doing that for a long time, well before #MeToo, so this is a real concern of hers.

    She’s kind of ruthless – when she sees what needs to be done politically, she does it. (I realize some people’s mileage may vary on this, as one of the prime examples was her call for Al Franken to resign, which some people think was terrible. Personally, I find that thinking inexplicable in the context of what was happening, but understandable in light of the great affection many people – including me! – had for Franken as a tough fighter on our side.)

    And of course she’s on board with all of the things I consider mandatory Dem positions on stuff like minimum wage, health care, voting rights, civil rights in general, and gun control (which is something of an evolution for her, but she did evolve).

  284. 284
    randy khan says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    OTOH, I’d sure vote for her.

    In the general, I’d walk over hot lava to vote for her over Trump or a replacement Republican.

  285. 285
    TheWesson says:

    Make Trump prove he’s not a Nazi.

    That would be something for the press to talk about.

  286. 286
    Dabba says:

    @Corner Stone: Why was Ralph FREAKING Nader on my TV yesterday?
    It’s because the media refs are getting nonstop worked and nervous that Democrats might actually win some seats, and they want to polish their BS bothsides bonafides. Gawd I hate it.

  287. 287
    Waynski says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    I understand that Warren put her foot down in a spot that is very, very sensitive for American Indians. I really do. But I also don’t think there was any other way for her to show that the Republicans were lying about her.

    Sorry if someone responded this way already, but I’ve always thought if you’re, “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” then you should do. She made the right choice. IMHO.

  288. 288
    dnfree says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’m going by the literal text and meaning of his original challenge as cited. Nothing about moving goalposts or saying what he really meant.

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    Another Scott says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: +1

    Cheers,
    Scott.

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    brantl says:

    @dnfree: Yes, it actually does, it just doesn’t prove which KIND of “indian” she is.

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