What to watch on Super Tuesday

Tuesday’s Republican primaries will start to reveal some of the complexity behind the nominating process. Or, to put it another way, they will make clear that this whole thing was supposed to be over already. Our primaries have evolved to crown nominees, not to select them. We are sailing into uncharted, treacherous waters.

Rules and practices vary so widely among the 13 states participating that it’s tough to pin down a standard figure for the number of delegates being assigned. In all, 595 delegates will be assigned to different campaigns based on outcomes on Tuesday. The process of selecting another 66 unbound delegates will be initiated.

Here’s a quick rundown of the states involved, their unique rules, and what to watch for in each contest.

Alabama – 50, primary

Proportional, with a split by Congressional District and statewide, and 50% winner-take-all threshold. Many states adopt this pattern, in which two pools of delegates are assigned by different methods, one by the statewide total and another by Congressional District. Outcomes are proportional, unless someone tops 50%, in which case the take the whole lot. We’ll call this the SEC primary method.

Expect most of the Deep South states to follow South Carolina in voting for Trump. They talk a lot about Jesus Christ, but their favorite political figure is still Jim Crow. One interesting race to watch here is Sen. Shelby’s re-election bid. He’s facing a semi-serious challenger. Difficult to tell how the crazy dynamics of this cycle might impact him.

Alaska – 28, caucus

Though described as a caucus, this is functionally a closed primary. Delegates will be assigned on a proportional basis among candidates earning more than 13% of the vote. You’ll see this method elsewhere and we’ll just call it the Alaska model.

As a closed vote in a small state, polling is pretty useless. It is impossible to predict how this might go, though it seems like the kind of place where Trump should do well.

Arkansas – 40, primary

Using the SEC Primary method for allocation. There are signs that Cruz may be doing unusually well here versus Trump. That may be a unique feature of Arkansas, or it may reflect a shift in late polling in the Deep South. This is a place where evangelical religion may be more important than immigrant-bashing. Watch outcomes in Arkansas’ northwest counties, the Wal-Mart corridor, for clues about the later direction of this race. It’s the only place in the state with a high concentration of educated professionals and expats.

Colorado – 37, caucus

No delegates will be assigned to candidates by voters in Colorado. All of Colorado’s delegates will be unbound. Several other states are sending unbound delegates, a method that gives extraordinary influence to the state party. These people will be interesting to watch in a convention fight.

Georgia – 76, primary

This is another SEC Primary in terms of the method. Trump is leading here by a significant margin, but this is a very fluid race.

Massachusetts – 42, primary

This is a purely proportional race, in which everyone earning more than 5% can win a delegate. Trump is leading in Massachusetts by a surprising margin.

Minnesota – 38, caucus

Delegates will be bound based on Congressional District and statewide results of a caucus vote. To earn delegates a candidate needs to top 10%. To win all of the state’s delegates a candidate needs to top 85%.

Oklahoma – 43, primary

Another SEC Primary. Trump leads in polls, but only by a small margin.

Tennessee – 58, primary

Another SEC Primary, with one interesting twist. No one earning less than 20% will be assigned any delegates from TN. The cutoff to win all of the state’s delegates is 2/3 rather than 50%.

Texas – 155, primary

Here’s where it gets interesting. A quarter of the delegates assigned on March 1 will come from Texas. Texas follows the SEC Primary method, splitting up the statewide and Congressional District results. The floor for delegate assignment is 20%. The results become winner-take-all at 50%.

Polls indicate that Cruz is within striking distance of the 50% cutoff. Anecdotally I can report that the same category of religious voters who are supporting Trump in places like South Carolina and Georgia are fiercely supportive of Cruz in Texas. In fact, they are electric and they are pushing very, very hard.

Cruz is virtually guaranteed 100 delegates from Texas. Combined with proportional results elsewhere, that’s enough to make him a force all the way to the convention floor. If he tops the 50% threshold here he might be the biggest delegate winner of the day even if he fails to win another contest. Cruz wins Texas and Kasich ekes out a win in Ohio on March 15 (66 delegates, winner-take-all) and you’ve got a deadlocked primary, followed by a floor-fight at the convention. Texas may be the only race you need to watch on Tuesday.

Vermont – 16, primary

There are Republicans in Vermont. With the stakes so high this cycle, expect all 15 of them to vote in this year’s primary. The state follows the SEC Primary method, without the CD split (small state).

Virginia – 49, primary

Delegates will be assigned on a fully proportional basis. Virginia is interesting because the counties around DC are essentially ‘East Coast’ in terms of their orientation. Beyond the DC suburbs it’s a Deep South state. The primary results, divided by county, will provide an interesting gauge of how the party’s so-called moderates view Trump, and how well Cruz can perform with evangelical voters. So far, the state’s religious fundamentalist leaders have lined up strongly in favor of Trump.

Wyoming – 29, caucus

Like Colorado, Wyoming will not hold a Presidential preference ballot, instead sending its delegates to the convention unbound.

Overall, it will be interesting to see whether anyone can top 50% anywhere. Evangelical voters also bear watching. As the race moves past the Deep South states where white identity issues are so close to the surface, will Trump still win religious voters? Is a Trump grand strategy starting to emerge from his word salad, in which Northern voters who care little about conservatism link up with religious bigots elsewhere to put him over the top?

By Wednesday we can put aside a lot of the speculation and start making predictions based on data. Should be fun.

Here are a couple of good sources for details on each of the individual races:

Frontloading

The Green Papers

 

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

Posted in Uncategorized
242 comments on “What to watch on Super Tuesday
  1. 1mime says:

    NYT “thingamabobber” (Nate Silver’s coinage), shows the way forward for Rubio….An interactive online primary calculator…Have fun (-:

    “The same delegate rules that help Mr. Trump win without a majority of the popular vote also make it easier for one of his rivals to mount a comeback.

    Mr. Rubio could lose every state on Super Tuesday and still win a majority of delegates. Here’s how:

    Mr. Rubio’s path starts with quick exits by Mr. Cruz and Mr. Kasich, giving Mr. Rubio an opportunity to consolidate their support. His challenge would be to do this before March 15, when a slew of big states cast ballots. Florida and Ohio, two winner-take-all states worth a combined 165 delegates, would be especially important.

    But if Rubio starts winning after March 15, it may be too late for him to get a majority of delegates.”

    There you have it. Just as Ginsberg predicted. To upset the “plan”, Trump would HAVE to win FL, depriving Rubio. OH is also pivotal and unless Kasich can be convinced he needs to drop out in his home state, he is polling strongly there. (Objv, your family evidently has a good “read” on Kasich’s popularity in OH.)

    http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/02/27/upshot/republican-delegate-calculator-how-trump-can-win.html

  2. johngalt says:

    Former defense secretary Robert Gates is not a fan of the current GOP candidates, and is not shy about saying so:
    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jan/26/robert-gates-republican-presidential-candidates-national-security

  3. Rob Ambrose says:

    This guy absolutely nails it with this essay.

    What we are seeing is the inevitable result of 40 years of Conservative economic policy. Per capita income has gone significantly up in that time. So why do so many blue collar workers feel like things have never been worse?

    Because basically all the new income has gone to the top 10%.

    If you take all of Sanders supporters and all if Trumps supporters (who are both responding to the same dynamic, the difference between them is what they feel the solution is) that’s a massive chunknof of the American electorate that is being crushed by GOP led inequality.

    This is just the beginning. The underlying forces that caused Trump will not go away, even if Trump himself does.

      • 1mime says:

        I take Salon with a grain of salt, but this piece has some good thinking in it that Democrats should not ignore….even though I plan to vote for Hillary, I do not ignore that she is a flawed, vulnerable candidate, and Republicans know it. She’s also the best of the lot from both sides, so there is that. I agree that Sanders offers strengths HRC doesn’t possess, but she is electable and she will do the least harm. Oddly, that has become important to me (-:

      • 1mime says:

        Yep, pure Bernie, and he is telling it like it is, which honesty is appealing to many people. From your Salon link:

        “on a per-person basis, the country’s wealth has increased far more over the past four decades than it did in the thirty years immediately after World War II.

        Here are the numbers: between 1945 and 1974, per capita GDP in the U.S. grew from $17,490 to $27,837. That is an impressive improvement, but it pales in comparison to what has happened since: in 2014, per capita GDP was $55,185, i.e., almost exactly double what it was in 1974. In terms of economic output, the country is twice as rich per person now as it was then.

        Where has all this money gone? The answer ought to shock anyone who cares about either economic opportunity or increasing inequality. The average household income of the bottom 50% of American households was $25,475 in 1974, and $26,520 in 2014. In other words, half the population has gotten essentially none of the extra $10 trillion dollars of national wealth that the American economy has generated over the past forty years.”

        And, that, my friends, is the message that Democrats need to hammer, hammer, hammer into the consciousness of every voter out there. This is a legitimate, real issue and Dems have not been successful in making it understood. Bernie has. And, that’s why he is resonating with so many people.

  4. MassDem says:

    Jeez, I stayed up to watch the Alaska returns last night for some ungodly reason, and I am exhausted. I think I’ll just put my head down on a desk today and let the kids run amok.

  5. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    Interesting interpretation by Bernie supporters tonight.

    Their position is that Bernie is doing great in Blue states that are likely to vote Democrat in the general election. Hillary is cleaning up in states that will never vote Democrat in the general.

    They are trying to argue that this makes Hillary a less worthy candidate (and some idiots have argued that non-Blue states shouldn’t get much say in the primaries).

    I think the easy counter-argument is that those Blue states Bernie is winning are going to pretty easily be Hillary states in the fall. Bernie’s lack of appeal outside the Blue states limits him and makes it less likely to pick up swing states.

    Alas, lots of Bernie fans are swinging with their hearts a bit more than with their heads.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      While that’s all true, the bigger point is what many, including myself, have been arguing for a while now and that’s that Bernie Sanders’ appeal among minority voters just isn’t there. It’s just not. And Sanders’ key assertion is that he’ll bring out new voters into the political process in a way that we’ve never seen before. We’ve seen that fall flat in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina and now all throughout Super Tuesday. It ain’t happening.

      Now’s the time for all of us to come together and, crude though it might sound, fall in line behind Hillary Clinton. It’s time to start looking to the general election.

    • MassDem says:

      Meh. Does it ever occur to the that Trump and Sanders would be fighting it out for the same demographic, the Angry White Vote?

      • 1mime says:

        Trump & Cruz share an angry White constituency but the age of their base is different – with Sanders driving Millennials and Trump older voters. Maybe I’m wrong, but I think younger voters aren’t as bitter as older Whites are. Their age gives them more hope and time to deal with the problems they are confronting in their lives. I think this is an important difference. Hope is harder to maintain without the enthusiasm and natural optimism of youth.

  6. 1mime says:

    The most interesting discussion happened after 11:30pm, cst, on MSNBC, with the guest, GOP political attorney, Ben Ginsberg. Ginsberg outlined the process by which the GOP establishment can defeat Trump’s march to the nomination by utilizing the state delegate award process, which he said accounts for 73% of all delegates cast. This can work but requires a state by state effort, and presumes Trump fails to get the 1237 delegate votes. This is the value of the other candidates staying in – to dilute Trump’s total delegate aggregate. Ginsberg acknowledged that the state process is the only real viable alternative and involves lots of “rules” knowledge. The question about how Trump’s base will react to a concerted effort by the GOP establishment to use the rules to thwart a Trump’s demonstrated national mandate, was the source of some debate. Ginsberg acknowledged the efforts would be known and thus this would increase tension. He also stated that Trump’s people are aware of the establishment’s plans and that they would be players at the state level to counter the effort to defeat him through rules.

    I was disappointed to learn that voter turnout for Dems was down in double digits in many states; whereas, Republicans are breaking turnout records. Trump is given credit for expanding the base which also makes it so challenging for the establishment to overtly work against him.

    Bottom line – the GOP establishment lost on Super Tuesday, per the pundits and Chris Matthews announced that he has lost the ability to distinguish between a concession speech and a victory speech (-:

    Will have to find out about Alaska in morning….but it was worth staying up late to hear the Ginsberg discussion…He was amazingly, surprisingly forthcoming.

    10-4.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      For all the talk of decreased Democratic turnout (in the primaries, anyway), keep an eye on Hispanics. Honestly, I’ve never quite seen them react to a candidate as they have with Donald Trump. Come November, if they turn out close to their actual numbers, get ready for some big surprises.

      http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2016/03/01/3755144/virginia-latinos-super-tuesday/

    • johngalt says:

      I wouldn’t put much stock in the voter turnout numbers. Fact is there isn’t much to vote for on the Dem side. Most mainstream Dems see Clinton’s nomination as a foregone conclusion, so why bother? For the record, though, there were shockingly long lines at my polling place yesterday and, here in Texas, the lines were longer for the Democratic side than the Republican one.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I know some people who normally would have voted Democrat but this year they voted in the Republican primary for the sole purpose of voting against Trump and lowering his chances of winning the Republican nomination and potentially becoming President.

      • 1mime says:

        That’s good to hear, JG (-:

        I agree that Dems aren’t as interested or motivated in primaries, and also agree with Ryan that the Hispanic turnout and Black turnout are positive indicators. Of the ladies who assist me in our home, one is Hispanic and two are Black. None of them voted in the primary, but all of them have told me they will vote in the General Election. For which I will provide continual encouragement (-:

        I think this is true of these sectors, generally. Still, Trump has energized the base, positively and negatively, and he has brought new voters into active participation, so that can’t be discounted. What will be a real mess for the Republicans is how they deal with turning Trump delegates at the state level to another candidate. Ginsberg explained that this is where the battle will happen. State delegates are required to vote for the candidate which the state’s popular vote selected, on the FIRST ballot, after that, on subsequent balloting rounds, they are free to vote for someone else. THIS is where the establishment will focus and it will be a grueling process but they will invest the time and money to make it happen.

        Trump, in the meantime, will be aware of this GOP establishment strategy, and he will fight it because he has to. Thus, not only does he have to continue to run his national campaign, concurrently, he will have to fight state by state to counter the internal offensive the establishment will mount against him, Ginsberg also pointed out that the next two weeks is critical. If Trump captures the delegate count needed to become the nominee by March 15, it will be strategically more difficult for the GOP to be successful in their efforts to proffer a different candidate.

        The Ginsberg interview came on around 11:30 cst, on MSNBC, and is probably archived on their website if anyone wants to earn their master’s degree in politics. Ginsberg was involved, btw, in the Bush v. Gore scenario, so he goes waaaay back. He’s savy and smart. He’s someone who can make things happen, even “ugly” things, by the rules, or, by changing the rules. I wouldn’t want him as an adversary.

  7. johngalt says:

    I spent much of today at the Houston Museum of Natural Science with an elementary school’s worth of third graders. We saw an IMAX on space exploration, during which more than 100 eight and nine year olds sat mesmerized and silent for nearly an hour. A (very) brief bit was on the Challenger explosion, which I remember from watching on TV when I was in high school (home sick that day, coincidentally). It is perhaps a terrible reason to choose a president (though less terrible than some I have heard recently), but which candidate today can you see giving a speech like this, given that it is nearly guaranteed that he or she will have to give a speech like this at some point.

    • 1mime says:

      Only Obama……….

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Kasich.

      • 1mime says:

        I don’t think Kasich has the oratorical skills that Obama has, nor does he demonstrate the depth of feeling that I see in O. I do think Kasich understands more deeply issues that are important to average people, but the ability to convey feelings in a political environment that are personal, appropriate and genuine in a manner that lifts people up is a gift, and Obama has it.

  8. johngalt says:

    Damn, MassDem, what is wrong with your state? Trump winning by 30% and getting his highest share of the vote of any state? Having lived there for a while, I know the politics can be a little odd, but I didn’t expect that.

    • 1mime says:

      At least the Dems in MAss voted for the right candidate….

    • Blue-state Republicans and red-state Democrats can be strange folk at times.

      Isn’t that right, Chris? :p

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      I’ve often thought that MA and TX have things in common, particularly hard-headed stubbornness and the occasional indecipherable accent.

    • MassDem says:

      Two things: most of the good people of MA were busy voting for a Dem (almost 1.2 million vs just over 600K for the GOP). Who wanted to miss out on that hot Dem-on-Dem action?

      Of those voting GOP, 17K voted for candidates who were not in the race anymore (but were still on the ballot) or “other”. I hope those who voted “other” wrote in Vermin Supreme; he’s a native son.

      Rubio, Cruz & Carson got 180K votes between them, which is pretty good considering we’re not big fans of Movement Conservatives up here.

      After that, what’s a MassRepub to do? You could vote for Kasich, and he did come in 2nd with 110K votes, but you know he’s not going to win the nom. Plus, the Globe came out with an editorial encouraging Independents to vote for Kasich, and you know how much our right-leaning folk love to be told what to do by the local liberal rag.

      Hence the Trumpening.

  9. Rob Ambrose says:

    Holy hell……Van Jones is absolutely destroying that old silver haired guy on CNN re: the KKK.

    This is riveting TV, Van is completely calling out the Republican party for race baiting. Its devaststingly effective

    I haven’t heard any mainstream media call out the GOP like anything close to this.

    • 1mime says:

      Wow, Sanders leading in CO. I have a good friend there who’s been telling me how strong the millennial push for Sanders is in CO….looks like she’s right.

    • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

      A female member of my family was talking today about how she once saw Trump discuss how families of terrorists also had to be killed on Fox News. She said that was galling to her that an major presidential contender was advocating war crimes. She should know what constitutes a war crime… she has a military background.

      Keep in mind, not every terrorist’s family is aware of their wayward sons and daughters actions or would approve. This member of my family served the country diligently, effectively and trained hard… only to see as a civilian a potential commander in chief spout actions that should horrify any right minded individual… but she really remembered how his grotesque suggestions of military policy were met by awkward silences and slightly pained looks on the faces of the Fox News morning pundits.

      There once was a growing cancer on the presidency during the Nixon years, well now there is a growing moral vacuum in the heart of a major party.

      It’s that morally cowardice and reticence in the face of a bigoted atmosphere (or mob mentality on the right) that Trump encourages that really sticks in my craw. Traditional family values, pro-life campaigns, minority outreach(?!) and religious freedom… what the hell does any of that mean if Trump is the standard bearer for the party’s values.

      A friend of mine recently intimated his lament of the rise of Trump. Keep in mind he is as white as Tilda Swinton is pale. He had true genuine fear of Trump’s potential to win the general election.

      Why?

      Well he has a lovely wife of Mexican/Latino decent and children who share that heritage… that’s why! He isn’t what I’d call a liberal and he is not a Sean Hannity invented Black Lives Matter parody or a low down dirty secular progressive (what ever that means).

      This man is Catholic (so obviously not a KKK fan), a hard working small business owner with a blue collar background, who also laments the poor/terrible/disrespectful treatment of Obama by the GOP. He feels Obama has gotten a raw deal for reasons he can’t entirely fathom, who he believes was genuinely trying to do the right thing while in office.

      There were times during our conversation where I almost felt like I was trying to comfort him that it would all work out and that I had hope the country would eventually reject the bigotry and know nothing-ism of Trump and his ilk… regardless if he wins in November or not. But it made me wonder later that night about this election season and the state of our two party system.

      What does it say about the Republican Party if it can lose a potential voter like that?

      • flypusher says:

        Trump excels in at least 5 of the 7 deadly sins, yet many evangelicals rationalize that away. Trump was born wealthy, has a very checkered record in his business dealings, but some people are convinced that he’s a classic Horatio Alger success story and he can reverse all the effects of globalization just by demanding it. The only reason to support Trump that makes any sense to me is the desire to flip off the GOPe.

      • 1mime says:

        The old “Cy and I went to the circus. Cy got hit by a bowling pin. We got even with that circus! We bought two tickets but we didn’t go in!!!”

        Some people’s rational compass is too strange to fathom.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        “The only reason to support Trump that makes any sense to me is the desire to flip off the GOPe.”

        Other than the fact that Cruz is downright scary and Rubio is almost as conservative as Cruz (and even more conservative on a few issues).

        If you are a Republican that doesn’t care of gay people get married and supports women making the decision of what to do with a pregnancy, Trump is your only marginally rational choice.

      • 1mime says:

        Bingo! Of course, the GOP establishment is scared of him precisely because he is so unpredictable. You know how they insist that everyone march lockstep to their code…(the recent scenario with Gov. Brian Sandoval who made the fatal error of responding positively to the news that he was short-listed for SCOTUS vetting….which took a whole 24 hours to be retracted…)

        And, the establishment is correct. Trump is dangerous for them, and, I think for our nation, but if I had to vote for one of the trinity, it would be Trump, because he doesn’t hew to a rigid ideological mindset, and wouldn’t be bothered flipping off the leadership if he disagreed with their advice.

        Frankly, after listening to Ben Ginsberg speak at some length last night (amazingly open about “how” the GOP can “tweak” the rules to broker the convention for a Cruz or Rubio alternative) – unless Trump can capture the minimum number of delegates – 1237 – you can count on him being challenged – even if it splits the party. There are some seriously smart, experienced political operatives advising the powers that be. Clearly, they do.not.want. Trump as their standard-bearer. It’s gonna get ugly and Lifer has probably got it right that we’re looking at Cruz being the nominee if the outcome can be controlled. Ginsberg convinced me that it can be. One sharp man…

      • flypusher says:

        “If you are a Republican that doesn’t care of gay people get married and supports women making the decision of what to do with a pregnancy, Trump is your only marginally rational choice.”

        Aren’t those the people who are going to hold their noses and vote for HRC?

    • 1mime says:

      Mainstream media has been MIA on substance thus far. I hope that changes as the field winnows. Nail some of these candidates who speak in soundbites and never substantively respond to a serious question…It’s the lack of follow up by media when the candidates fudge that bothers me. I’m like Fly – import some BBC commentators to show the US commentators how its done.

  10. Rob Ambrose says:

    Did anybody post that Vox article that said the only common thread between Trump voters was a clear trend of authoritarianism? And that those personalities get attracted to political strongmen when their status becomes threatened?

    I’ve got a feeling that the thing that has the Trump supporters (which have now become a legitimate phenomenon) scared and angry about is directly connected to the wealth disparity. This is exactly what we mean when we say that wealth inequality is a politically destabilizing issue and needs to be addressed no matter HOW big the pie is.

    The middle class feels ripped off by having their generational livelihoods stripped down and sent overseas in the course of a few decades in the name of “free trade” and “globalization”. They wernt adequately compensated, and they see that the wealth at the top of the country is increasing exponentially, they get angry. They get scared. And then when a strongman comes in and promises to ” kick some ass!!” and puts a face to the enemy (Jews, Mexicans, Muslims etc) and promises to punish them and also “take back the jobs” and “make us great again” then that is going to appeal to a lot of people who are scared.

    I think globalization is a net positive , but there are some pretty big growing pains for such a huge dislocation, and this seeming rise of militant Americanism is one of them.

    Let’s hope it doesn’t get too big. Hopefully the 1% left enough wealth behind to keep enough people sane enough to defeat this thing. History is full of many positive outcomes of right wing quasi fascist populist revolutions.

    But I’m probably being alarmist. Im sure Trump will get crushed in the general………right?

    • 1mime says:

      An old curmudgeon, Tom DeLay, was interviewed by Chris Matthews. He provided some pretty big hints as to what the party is going to do…..said Trump didn’t want to be President, he wanted to be king…that’s probably true….and that the party needed someone who wouldn’t destroy it and who believed in the Constitution….Ted Cruz…..talked about how unless Trump comes to the convention with 1237 delegates, it will be a brokered convention…..

      Wow, Cruz is a candidate that won’t “destroy” the party? Maybe that’s how he sees it; I see Cruz destroying the country….forget the GOP.

      • 1mime says:

        Oh, and Delay also said that party rules were all about delegate count. The winner of the majority of the primaries wouldn’t be a deciding factor….

      • Creigh says:

        My problem with Ted Cruz is his confusion about what is the Constitution and what is the Bible. Old Testament, particularly.

  11. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    If you don’t want to watch Rubio’s Presidential hopes plummet to earth, you can tune into NASA live coverage of an ISS astronaut and cosmonaut plummeting to earth after an 11-month stint in the ISS.

    http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/

    • 1mime says:

      That’s an amazing accomplishment, Homer. We need to refocus on things that are truly significant, don’t we?

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      These guys are about six minutes from touchdown (which is just a nice way of saying crashing to the ground). They are falling at 7m/sec right now, and when they are about a meter from the ground, rockets will fire to give them a soft landing.

      If that is my butt in the capsule, I’m peeing my pants at about 4 feet hoping those rockets fire.

      Truly cool stuff.

  12. rulezero says:

    I’ll be damned. Bernie managed to pull off a win in Oklahoma, of all places. I wonder if he’ll manage to pull Minnesota and Alaska as well.

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      There are relatively few Black people in Oklahoma.

      The old white lady from New York is getting just about the same percentage of the Black vote that Obama got.

      I saw an interesting comment by a Hillary supporter to Bernie supporters. Essentially, the argument was that it must be nice to be coming from a place where you can support Bernie even though he is probably less viable in the general election than is Hillary. The point was that young, college educated White liberals are generally going to be fine regardless of who is President, but when your voting rights are under attack, when people who look like you are getting imprisoned or shot by the police all too often, when your marriage rights are up for debate, or when your ability to decide what to do when you get pregnant is under attack, it matters a whole lot who is President. Taking a risk for Bernie is too big a risk for some people because the alternative has serious downsides for them.

      I think I can understand that argument.

      • 1mime says:

        Implicit in this thought is an obligation to change things for people who have had few politicians in their corner that went to the mat for them. In a phrase, it’s time for action.

        How’re the margaritas, Homer? Listenin’ to Cruz…from other room…cannot look at him speak…

        Trump was very accusatory about Hillary’s email situation. He called her decision “criminal” and that she might not not be able to be a candidate….That’s really calling the kettle black as his appeal of fraud charges was thrown out today. Guess that only leaves squeaky clean Cruz…

        I am so waiting for Lifer’s update on Super Tuesday.

      • Creigh says:

        “Trump was accusatory about her email situation.” He also pointed to the fact that middle class incomes haven’t risen under administrations she was associated with. I think that economics will be his most persistent and most effective argument in the general. It’s certainly the one I fear the most.

      • 1mime says:

        No, I disagree. She wasn’t in a position to influence economic growth. If anything, a smart candidate would turn this on him to the 30 year downtrend in real income for working people, and the abject refusal by the Republicans to support minimum wage increases. All the while, advocating and actually cutting benefits for the working class and seniors while passing tax cuts for the upper class….of which Trump is emblematic.

        What I think he will focus on is Hillary’s email problem, and, let there be no doubt, it is a problem because it gives the GOP a wedge. Plus, we have all seen how the Swift Boat ads doomed Kerry, even though they were patently false. Then there is the “Bill” thing, which has been quietly ignored up to now, but you can bet your pantyhose, it will become another lancet.

  13. 1mime says:

    Just watched Christie introduce Trump….had a thought…probably not a VP pick, but AG? Yeah….Christie would be in his element.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Man….Trump sounds almost presidential right now (if you watch this clip in a vacuum).

      He sounds eminently reasonable. If this is his new strategy, its going to win some votes.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Lol….”I’ve got to really compliment Ted Cruz, because I know how hard he worked in Texas. And of course I did pretty good there too”

        Is a pretty brilliant dagger. Talk about damning with faint praise.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        “Man….Trump sounds almost presidential right now (if you watch this clip in a vacuum).”

        Welp….that didn’t last long.

  14. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    Interesting take on the results so far from the the gang at 538.

    With Cruz winning Oklahoma (in addition to Texas), their conclusion is that it is a pretty good night for Cruz. Winning Oklahoma was big because Trump was polling ahead there.

    Their initial interpretation is that “hey, Cruz won two states and stopped some of Trumps momentum”, and I’m sure that is how Cruz will spin it.

    The other interpretation could be, “Holy shit, Cruz could only manage to win his home state and his neighbor state while Trump ran the rest of the table on him and Rubio”.

    I think this keeps Cruz in for the long haul (possibly fulfilling Lifer’s prophecy that Cruz is the eventual scary nominee).

    There just isn’t an upside to Rubio’s night so far other than, “Come on guys, I keep finishing second, and no one wants the two nutballs who are finishing first, so at some point, you all are going to have to settle for me”.

    If I’m Trump, I go full scale, “Hey I blitzed these jokers and the only thing the Washington insider could win was his home state and his next door neighbor. I’ve won in the north, I’ve won in the south, I’ve won in the east, and I’ve won in the west. No one can match the energy of my supporters and no one can compete nationally with me.”

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Houston – and if he said that, he’d be absolutely right.

    • 1mime says:

      538 offers good analysis. One point, OK went for Cruz, but Trump was a close second. That’s important in terms of delegates….12 for Cruz; 10 for Trump. That’s hardly decisive, although it is definitely a win. Same thing happened in TX. Trump second in Cruz’ home state and Cruz couldn’t get but 40% of the vote. I don’t think that’s a mandate.

  15. Rob Ambrose says:

    Its still early, for sure, but three takeaways from the GOP side:

    1. Cruz has no appeal whatsoever outside the hardcore Evangelical vote (and doesn’t even lead among evangelicals.

    2. Rubio is everybody’s second choice, nobody’s first. I can’t imagine that represents a true path to the nomination.

    3. Trump is unstoppable, unless you’re talking brokered conventions. And he’s going to win so handily in the primaries I don’t know how the party could pull that off without a full scale rebellion bybthe base

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      CNN shows Trump absolutely crushing among voters who are looking for an outsider, in some states by 60 points.

      They showed earlier that Texas has 91% of voters are either “angry” or “dissatisfied” with the federal government.

      Predicting a Trump surprise in Texas. Maybe not a win, but it’ll be a lot closer then expected

      • 1mime says:

        I’m going to be real interested in turn out percentages. As a predictor for the General, the primary turn out could be an interesting indicator. Most Republicans I know will hold their noses and vote for whoever the nominee is….these are the older WASP Repubs. Moderates and Independents are going to be more interesting to predict, as will the Millennials. Will their disenchantment with HRC keep them home?

    • 1mime says:

      It’s ironic, isn’t it Rob, that Bernie started calling for a “revolution”, but, Trump is getting one! I’m with you, it would be suicide for the Republican Party to turn on Trump if he has the delegates he needs to claim the nomination. It would cleave the party in two, and though Lifer may feel this is necessary, short term, it sure ain’t pretty.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Crazy times, Mime. Crazy times.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I can’t stand Trump, but if he gets the requisite number of delegates, the decison of the voters must be respected and he should be the nominee.

      • fiftyohm says:

        I dunno, Tutt. I wouldn’t stand by him at the urinal. The last time I stood by such a horse’s ass, I was in a stable.

      • 1mime says:

        Yeah, I hear ya, Fifty! I just watched Trump make his speech in FL…his modesty is so refreshing.

        Looks like Trump/Cruz. What a conundrum for the GOP. A man that appalls them or a man they can’t stand?

        How’s Canada lookin’, Fifty?

      • fiftyohm says:

        Back up there next month. Thing is every country has their problems. We have fewer than most, and this current crop of Republicans aren’t going to change that. Heck – they’re not going to even be elected. And neither is Bernie Boy. So we’ll carry on.

      • 1mime says:

        I assume you think there’s a good chance Hillary will win….How do you feel about that?

  16. 1mime says:

    From your CNN link on this topic, I quote: ” (CNN)The famed van that carried Hillary Clinton from her Chappaqua, New York, home across the state of Iowa appears to have momentarily paused in a spot reserved for the handicapped along the way.”

    • objv says:

      Other sources say it was either parked there the whole time or parked in the space during drop off and pick up. I’m only allowed to post one link at a time so I picked one that was short but still showed Clinton entering a van parked in a handicapped spot.

  17. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    As you all settle in to watch Trump’s YUUUUGE triumphs tonight and listen to his CLASSY speech while the LOSERS and HATERS whine like little babies, I will remind you that in Lifer’s poll of when Trump would implode, I have it a full two weeks after he is elected President of these United (for now) States.

    Of course, I’ve been wrong about everything so far this election cycle, so maybe it’ll be margaritas and mayhem for me as I watch the returns roll in.

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      Correction….that is two weeks after he is inaugurated as President….lord have mercy on us all.

      • 1mime says:

        Aw, Homer, you have to wait for the polls to close BEFORE you start with the margaritas! You’re gonna be pasted before the exit polls start comin’ in (-:

    • 1mime says:

      Be sure to stock up on popcorn, Homer! (Although margaritas sound soooo good!) I’m sure we’ll all be burnin’ the midnight fuel tonight. Keep the comments coming!

  18. tuttabellamia says:

    Speaking anecdotally . . . from talking to coworkers and friends here in Houston . . . it seems Bernie Sanders is the candidate being supported by young and not-so-young Hispanic voters today.

    • 1mime says:

      Bernie’s run a fabulous campaign. I am so proud for him. Candidates need to be encouraged as the campaign process is so grueling. I heard an interview over NPR today in which the person being interviewed attended a SAnders rally near Plano, TX and one in which Bill Clinton spoke. She said the enthusiasm in the large Sanders crowd was intense….much more so than the Clinton rally.

  19. vikinghou says:

    A good friend of mine was at the location where Ted Cruz cast his vote for the primary today. The voting place is also a community center where there are therapeutic facilities. She was in a handicapped parking space unloading her mother who goes to the pool. The Cruz entourage arrived and claimed adjacent handicapped spaces. They told my friend and her mother to move. My friend is not easily swayed. She stood her ground and countered that she didn’t care who they were—they were all parked illegally. The entourage didn’t move, and Mr. Cruz emerged from one of the handicapped spaces and entered the voting center. Such class.

    • 1mime says:

      Boy, it’s a good thing I wasn’t there. I have had battles royale over handicap access violations and I assure you, I won.

      The arrogance! Someone needs to remind Cruz that he’s not President yet, and, last time I looked, the only handicap he has is his self-opinion. However, I highly doubt that the real President, Obama, would have comported himself in that manner. He would have understood how important handicap parking spaces are for those who need them.

      What.a.jerk.

      For those who may one day confront a situation involving handicap parking violations, here’s what you can do. Call local law enforcement. Take a picture of their car showing it to be illegally parked, getting a nice close up of the license tag. I do not hesitate to hang out and speak to people I see parking in a handicap space with no obvious impairment and NO handicap tag. I.don’t.care.WHO.they.are. – or “think” they are.

      Here’s the law in TX: Fines range from $255 to $511. The charge will be considered a criminal offense. Violators could even end up doing community service. The new law also applies to those who falsely use a disabled placard or block a disabled spot.

      I only hope that your friend and her mother had not yet cast their vote.

      This particular incident is the height of crassness.

    • Mitchell says:

      Couldn’t find anything about Cruz parking in a handicap spot. but …

      http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/04/16/entitled-hillary-parks-in-handicap-spot/

      • 1mime says:

        I notice that Hillary wasn’t driving the car or in the car….which doesn’t make it right for her staff to park illegally in a handicapped parking space, but this is world’s different than Cruz being “IN” the car, hearing and seeing the discussion with the woman and her handicapped mother right next to them, and “CHOOSING” to exit without having his driver move the vehicle.

        I don’t know who you are Mitchell, but if you’re trolling, this is one subject you don’t want to get into a debate with me on.

        FOR THE RECORD: HANDICAP PARKING SPACES ARE FOR HANDICAP PEOPLE AND THEIR DRIVERS.

        NO EXCEPTIONS.

      • Mitchell says:

        I have no intention of trolling you or the blog and i agree totally about reserving handicap parking spots for the disabled. I just found it interesting when i searched (and it may be that no one was around with a camera ) that the media had nothing about Cruz parking in the space, while there were quite a few about Hillary. I have no particular love for Cruz for that matter. I have been following this blog for several years and am always enlightened by all the reasonable comments. The sites I saw about HRC stated, and had pictures, of her getting in the van which was parked at least partially in the H/C space.

      • 1mime says:

        I’m happy to hear your interest is universal, Mitchell. Self-importance is dangerous for anyone. I understand that candidates’ time is very tightly organized; however, the experience of Viking’s friend and mother goes well beyond lame excuses. There was an exchange, the woman and her handicapped mother were told to move by someone within the car in which Cruz was sitting, and thus he witnessed the exchange. Any “decent'” person would have instructed the driver to move the vehicle. Cruz didn’t. That speaks volumes to me. As a matter of principle, Cruz should have insisted that the car be moved in compliance with the law that he holds so dearly.

        I do not give any candidate of either party (or any regular citizen for that matter) a pass on parking illegally in a handicap parking space. It’s wrong. Those parking spaces are critical for those who need them. Those who abuse them should be ticketed and fined – whoever they are – and that includes secret service details and candidates and elected officials.

        Maybe Viking can find out if the media captured the exchange. If they did, it should become public. If they didn’t, he was damn lucky. I admit I don’t like the man and this incident fits right in with my low expectations of him.

        Thank you for the clarification. I have very strong feelings on this subject as my husband is handicapped and we have had several problems regarding abuses of these critical parking spaces. It is a sore subject. And, Cruz et al were wrong.

      • objv says:

        Mime, her van was parked in a handicapped spot the whole time she was at a meeting. While she was getting back in her van, she was caught on camera. Believe it or not, both her situation and Cruz’s were probably benign and not illegal.

        Federal secret service agents are at their discretion to park wherever they think they think they can best protect whoever they’re assigned to. Neither Clinton or Cruz probably had a say as far as parking.

        http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/16/politics/hillary-clinton-van-handicap/index.html

        I am sympathetic to anyone who needs a handicapped spot. One of my friends was severely handicapped and she was always irked when handicapped spots were taken by apparently healthy people. I got a new perspective on this when my husband received a handicapped plate after a blood vessel ruptured in his brain.

        During the time he needed a wheelchair, there was no question that he needed a handicapped spot. Later, his disability was less apparent, but he still had problems with vision loss and after exertion, so his doctor advised him to make use of the handicapped parking. He was still in his forties, so to the casual observer, he didn’t look at all handicapped. I’m so glad no one stopped him and questioned his status!

        At first, I had to drive him around until his vision came back and he also had to be seizure free for six months before driving again, so we looked like two healthy people taking advantage of handicapped parking. Whenever, I was by myself, I parked in a regular parking space – good thing I did – there were several times I ran into acquaintances when shopping and it would have been extremely awkward to be seen using the handicapped space without my husband.

      • 1mime says:

        Ob, leave it alone.

      • objv says:

        Some of the sites I visited said the Clinton van was in the handicapped spot for drop off and pick up and parked somewhere else during the meeting.

      • objv says:

        Mime, I realize that you have strong feelings on this matter. It seems that both the Cruz and Clinton parking situations were due to decisions made by secret service agents. This does not reflect badly on either candidate.

        You are not the only one who has had to care for a disabled spouse. Due to my husband’s brain injury, he lost vision on the left side of both eyes and also had something called left neglect where he would stumble into things he didn’t realize were there. Outwardly, he looked relatively young and fit. Inwardly, he was coping with the effects of a hemorrhagic stroke and spent months at TIRR in rehab trying to regain physical and mental function. I’m extremely grateful that no one confronted him about the use of handicapped parking spaces.

        Why not try for a little understanding? It’s not easy dealing with a disability, but it’s also important that candidates that receive death threats are properly protected.

      • 1mime says:

        As long as someone has a handicap tag or license plate, they are fine. Park without one in a spot reserved for handicap people and I have no sympathy or understanding for you. Period.

        Why should Secret Service have a right to park illegally in a handicap spot? They shouldn’t. They may have to let someone out of the car, but they can then park elsewhere.

        My situation is different now as I can no longer get my husband into and out of a regular car, so my ire is more randomly focused. We now hire private medical transport as it is easier for him to be conveyed in his wheelchair. This isn’t temporary – This is for the rest of his life.

      • objv says:

        Mime, my sympathies. After the AVM burst, multiple doctors told us that my husband would be permanently disabled and that I would be taking care of him for the rest of his life – hence the handicapped license plate.

        Fortunately, thanks to TIRR, he made a remarkable recovery. He still has some problems from the effects of the brain bleed, but they are manageable. Even though, he eventually went back to work, it was always a struggle to function as he had before. A few months ago, he was able to take advantage of company downsizing and he retired early.

      • 1mime says:

        You and your husband are fortunate and I am glad for you that he was able to regain function, even if it limits him. He was also fortunate to be eligible for early retirement. You are both younger than my husband and me, but chronic illness never comes at a good time. Use your remaining years wisely. Live the life you love.

    • texan5142 says:

      How dare your friends mother impede Lord Cruz so as not to miss a prime photo op. All hail Darth Cruz!

      /s.

      I smell snake in the grass with Cruz, a sleeper cell if you will. The man is not stupid. When one creates hardship on another human being for no other reason than their personal beliefs, be it not the vessel, based on their world view, is does a disservice to all the Dogs no matter the Dog one follows.

      And no, I am not having a stroke.

  20. 1mime says:

    A new bill has been passed out of committee regarding administrative leave by government employees who are being investigated. Hmm, since the GOP loves to investigate everyone, that could leave only a few people running the shop….

    Hmmm, wonder if the same rules should apply to those who are running for office while “serving”? Who miss committee meetings? Who fail to vote? Who are habitually late for meetings? Who abuse the committee meeting process? Who waste government staff time with copious, frivolous information requests?

    Fair is fair. I think that government staff need to be able to propose their version of a bill to compel more responsible demands from members of Congress.

    Undoubtedly this leave has been abused, as have investigations of government staff. Maybe the bill should also have a “sunlight” provision that records the number of investigations initiated by members of Congress that add to their workload for “frivolous” purposes….to harass, to grandstand, to demean. I wonder what input the government staff had in this bill that focuses on their right to receive pay while undergoing an investigation which yields no charges?

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/03/01/house-panel-moves-to-limit-adminstrative-leave-for-federal-employees/?wpisrc=fl_powerpost

  21. Rob Ambrose says:

    https://newrepublic.com/minutes/130824/tired-cheer-supporters-beat-protesters-donald-trump-preemptively-removed-30-black-students-rally

    I think the most disturbing part of this is that it’s secret service agents who are acting as Trumps jack biited thugs, removing students for no other reason then they’re black on Drumpf’s orders.

    I get that every candidate deserves government protection, but secret service agents are representatives of the federal government. They shouldn’t be enforcing Trumps bigotry

    • 1mime says:

      I missed that yesterday. Trying to stay away from news other than what I get from CNBC or PBS…and little of that.

      If I get one.more.robocall. or one.more.Brady.push.card….I am going to scream………………..And, it’s just beginning…..The number of large, tri-color pushcards Brady has sent out is obscene…..Throw that $$ around. I’m Appropriations Chair, don’t ya know!

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Mime, I keep getting emails from Marco Rubio with suggestive titles such as:

        “About tonight . . . ” and

        “Before you go to bed . . . ”

        They crack me up.

  22. johngalt says:

    Watching a Hillary commercial for the third time in 15 minutes. Morgan Freeman is doing the narration in the same voice he used to describe Andy Dufresne’s jailbreak. This was followed by an anti-Trump spot (paid for by fine print I couldn’t read) calling him a Democrat and friend of Hillary. That’s definitely a path to GOP success in the general election.

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      Just saw Hillary’s ad for the first time, and the tone and tenor compared to the anti-Trump ad was jarring.

      Hillary doesn’t need to go negative, so seeing an ad of her over time, with an over-the-top amount of people of color, plays pitch perfect to her campaign strengths.

      All of the GOP candidates seem to have at least one fatal flaw that leads to something of a ceiling on their support.

      Trump is Trump and smart folks think he’s a side-show barker, dyed-in-the-wool conservatives don’t trust him, and non-xenophobes don’t like him.

      Cruz is faced with the unenviable task of trying to get elected when 75% of the people have a visceral negative reaction to him or his picture (this reaction may or may not be true within his immediate family as well). It is hard to get elected when almost no one likes you.

      Rubio is a lightweight, and while he absolutely had to start punching back at Trump, the way he is doing it makes him seem like that much more of a kid. He’s not naturally funny or naturally aggressive, and at this point he is just trying way to hard to be something he’s not.

      How do any of these folks get 50.1% of the country to vote for them? Heck, how do they get 50.1% of the GOP to vote for them?

      At this point, I may be done making predictions. I have no f-ing clue what will happen tomorrow, through the summer, and into November.

      I will not be surprised if in October, all of us are going to be sitting around like the GOP is today going, “How the hell did this happen? How is Trump polling better than Hillary in 40 of the 50 states? Surely the country is going to wake up and realize this is a bad idea.”

      At this point, I won’t be surprised if Bernie wins the GOP primary in Texas tomorrow.

      • 1mime says:

        I so agree with you Homer. Hillary has to stay positive, despite the drip, drip, drip of emails…such exquisite timing, don’t you think – last batch day before Super Tuesday? And the attacks of the Republicans that will only intensify. I stated earlier that HRC can help pull our country together. That statement does not ignore the very real problem she will face from conservatives who hate her; rather, it means that she has a chance to solidify the much larger base – moderates, independents, racially diverse, low income, high income, by simply doing the job efficiently and well. I think she’s capable of being exactly what America needs right now. Stay positive. Keep a sense of humor. Work hard and listen to David Plouffe (-:

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      So ironic in that I just got through rewatching The Shawshank Redemption. Such a great movie. 🙂

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Why are you being so obtuse? 🙂

      • 1mime says:

        I so agree about Shawshank. I’m sure you have seen the classic “Cool Hand Luke” and “One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest” for movies on institutional crime……

    • 1mime says:

      I haven’t seen either ad, but would venture the very fine print was fine for a reason……if you can figure out who paid for it, post the info. A betting person might venture that the GOP establishment is behind this ad…..it’s the only way they see to tarnish Trump…by linking him to HRC.

  23. 1mime says:

    Here’s a little razzle dazzle for Dems…..

    “Democrats are drawing blueprints for stealing GOP moderates from a rightward-driving Republican Party, saying the heist is key to scoring a White House win in November.”

    What’s good for the goose??? Mighty good strategy if Dems can make it work….will depend on the GOP nominee, that’s for sure.

    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/02/democrats-2016-strategy-gop-219957

  24. Rob Ambrose says:

    Its hilarious and sad to see these establishment GOP’ers continue to come on CNN and say things like “I’m confident once ppl do research into Trump….. etc etc”. When will these guys bet it? Their base is not buying what they’re selling anymore.

    I heard yesterday an amazing fact: more ppl voted JUST FOR TRUMP in the Nevada caucus then voted in TOTAL in the Nevada caucus in 2012.

    GOP voters are not only voting Trump in the primaries, they’re voting for him in record numbers.

    I truly don’t see how a schism can be avoided. Trump won’t lose and the GOP can’t let him wear their mantle. And I doubt they’ll ever put Humpty Dumpty together avain after this.

    It will be fascinating to see how the conservative movement bounces back. There’s no other bloc left lining up to support tax cuts forbthe wealthy in exchange for culture war platitudes.

    • Anse says:

      There is a lot of denial about Trump. I don’t think a lot of “Movement Conservatives” have been honest about how this guy took over their party all of a sudden. I meet some who insist his supporters aren’t the “real” GOP base, that they’re interlopers from among the independents or something. But everything about Trump follows the path the party has taken for the last several years. These Tea Party types have always been angry and generally incoherent and certainly not ideological in their motivations. Trump is the natural next step for those guys.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Actually, the Tea Partiers I know tend to support Cruz, with Rubio running a close second. They hate Trump because they think he’s just pretending to be conservative.

      • 1mime says:

        Here’s a look back to Trump’s plan to run for President, that began in 2014 with a candidate named: David Perdue. He ran as an outsider the whole way. Take a look at one of his most effective ads:

        Trump was intrigued with Perdue’s campaign and used many of the tactics. The rest, as they say, is history. Regardless how the 2016 race pans out, it will certainly be studied for years by those in politics.,,,,however belatedly.

        http://www.politico.com/story/2016/02/trump-steals-cruzs-southern-strategy-219977

    • 1mime says:

      “The Party Decides”, a book published in ’08 that demonstrated that insiders (GOP) select the Presidential candidate. WaPo explores more deeply just where Republicans went wrong this cycle. Most of the commentary I’m reading from several political analysts seem to think “the cow is out of the barn”……IOW, after Super Tuesday (assuming Trump does as well as predicted), there will be no way to stop him from being the Republican nominee without destroying the Party…..(now, there’s a thought….)

      Here’s one point of view (Daniel Drezner, WaPo) to consider: “…Trump is winning because no significant Republican coalition seriously tried to oppose him when there was still time for it to work. And the reason no powerful Republican coalition emerged to stop him is that the GOP believed all the analysts who said Trump had no chance.” IOW, they looked (as we all did) with years of experience, at proven political theory and concluded that there was no way Trump would win anything…………Except, he did and is continuing to do. That leaves only a brokered convention and the pitfalls in doing that are unfathomable. But, would it be worth it if the establishment heir-apparent (Rubio) continues to fall short? Or, absent a Rubio, someone else who hasn’t been running? A Romney? Ryan? ???

      Gee, just when Repubs needed to burn the midnight oil figuring out how to hold the budget together, they are gonna have to deal with “this”!?

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/02/26/the-real-reason-donald-trump-is-winning-no-one-thought-it-was-possible/

    • 1mime says:

      It will also be fascinating if Trump beats Hillary….Now, before you say, “that will NEVER happen”, suppose it did? None of us would be laughing, then.

      As for myself, I’m going to be cautious in my predictions….because, well, I’ve seen a lot of elections and stranger things have happened.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        With all respect, that’s not going to happen and the reasons are obvious. Trump is loathed by the Democratic base in a way that will turn them out and he is going to lose minorities by a landslide. He has about as much chance of winning the presidency as I do winning the lottery.

  25. Anse says:

    I just read a little thing on the Huffington Post that says the New York Times is sitting on some information that could possibly throw a massive bomb into this already unpredictable campaign. Apparently Donald Trump, along with some of the other candidates in both parties, sat for an interview, part of which was “on the record” and part of which was “off the record.” Gail Collins wrote a column about this meeting in which she says this:

    “The most optimistic analysis of Trump as a presidential candidate is that he just doesn’t believe in positions, except for the ones you adopt for strategic purposes when you’re making a deal.”

    The Huffpo piece goes on to say that while this was the “off the record” portion of the meeting, apparently a transcript or recording of it does exist.

    This is all unsubstantiated rumor, but it sure confirms my own doubts about the guy.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      That same article also says that the NYT cannot release that information without Trump’s personal approval, so… yeah.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        True, bit just by it being out there, its pretty bad for Drumpf.

        Its either on there or its not, and it’ll be pretty hard to explain why he refuses to allow the release if there’s nothing incriminating in it.

        That said, that’s kind of a dirty trick by the Times. I think most ppl take “off the record” to mean you won’t release the tapes OR even mention what was said.

        Of course, desperate times call for desperate measures.

        I’m pretty torn about who I want to win the nom. On the one hand, a Trump loss will be historically uneven, which would be great to watch, and his nomination will probably split the GOP. On the other hand, a Trump win will make it easy for the GOP to tell themselves he was a one off and a freak occurrence, and there isn’t REALLY a problem with their platform. They can tell them self again “well, the problem was that we didn’t have a REAL conservative.” And basically change nothing.

        I’m pretty confident Cruz would also lose badly, and it would at least have the added benefit of (hopefully) convincing the party that their uktra Conservative platform is a loser in today’s increasingly progressive America.

        Rubio, on the other hand, worries me. Hes fresh faced and young and SEEMS reasonable. I could see him grabbing some undecideds

      • Anse says:

        I’m not sure it would actually hurt him if it leaked, honestly. Nothing about this campaign makes any sense.

      • flypusher says:

        “Nothing about this campaign makes any sense.”

        It makes sense if you remember the phrase “Stigginit”. That’s what Trump’s base is doing; flipping the bird to conservative elites, liberal elites, immigrants, refugees, people who are sincerely Christian, people who are sincerely non-Christian, people who are educated, people who are “undeserving” of a safety net. The metaphor for this whole past 8 years of politics is one giant, defiantly upheld middle finger.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        @Rob Ambrose:

        >] “I’m pretty torn about who I want to win the nom. On the one hand, a Trump loss will be historically uneven, which would be great to watch, and his nomination will probably split the GOP. On the other hand, a Trump win will make it easy for the GOP to tell themselves he was a one off and a freak occurrence, and there isn’t REALLY a problem with their platform. They can tell them self again “well, the problem was that we didn’t have a REAL conservative.” And basically change nothing.”

        That won’t happen. Trump’s ascendancy has ended Republicans’ game of racial pandering and dog-whistle politics permanently. In addition to that, we’ve come to a pivotal turning point in generations in which Millenials and minority groups are rapidly expanding their political influence. By 2020, Millenials as a group will finally hit the peak of their power by way of the youngest of us turning eighteen and being eligible to vote.

        Needless to say, and as we all know, the share of the white vote in this country is declining starkly. Taken in tandem, these two factors alone will be the death of the Republican Party as it currently stands. They’re outnumbered and they know it.

        Ironically enough though, Republicans should actually be grateful for Trump. History may well remember him as the unintentional trigger for the GOP’s political realignment that allowed them to stave off annihilation.

      • 1mime says:

        Fly, You are so right. Trump tapped into an anger and frustration that has been building for some time. Here’s an article with a “Flint” mirror image…..company towns where businesses closed down, poorly educated workers, no attention from decision makers. They’ve been on their own until Trump gave them a voice….

        http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/02/why-the-south-is-rebelling-again-213688

      • Creigh says:

        Mime, your link quotes Mr. Bassett on what’s happening politically as “a wholesale rejection of the policies of both parties.” As we were discussing a few days ago, he points the finger at both establishments. And conservative writer Reihan Salaam has an article at Slate up yesterday stating bluntly that the Republican Party’s only survival path is to start addressing the problems of the working class, instead of the donor class. I’d argue that the Ds are hardly blameless here.

        I’ll say it again: what Bernie has already accomplished is amazing. I don’t think either party will be the same after this election, and that’s a good thing.

      • 1mime says:

        Creigh, I don’t disagree with you. Although Dems have undeniably done a better job for the working man and woman (especially in fighting hard under the existing GOP), both parties need to do better. At least Dems platform “speaks” to issues that affect working people and values their support. The other party could care less. Their focus has been on cutting benefits for the poor and cutting taxes for the wealthy. The choice for working people shouldn’t be hard when you compare priorities of the two parties.

        Everytime I see a criticism of Democrats on the subject of what they “haven’t” done for working people, I am amazed at the lack of awareness. Consider what “could have been done” to help people who lost jobs in the wake of the ’08 Great REcession. Obama proposed a jobs bill that was tied to infrastructure R & M when unemployment was sky high. It.got.nowhere. IF Repubs priorities were “really” to help the working man, this would have been a great piece of legislation to support “for the ‘good’ of the nation”. They wouldn’t because it came from O. How many times have we seen this from the GOP?

        Now, to Sanders. I applaud Senator Sanders. I simply feel HRC is a better candidate for the times. She’s very smart, knows how to maneuver the political process (which O clearly didn’t), has terrific foreign experience and contacts, and is a voice of reason. Calm, measured, steady. As Lifer said a long time ago, and I agree, Hillary will do no harm. What he didn’t say, but I believe, is that Hillary will help pull this nation together. I hope she finds a significant role for Bernie in her cabinet where he can continue to contribute in a meaningful way. First, she has to win the nomination, then, she has to win the general election. Neither of which is guaranteed.

      • 1mime says:

        Another point re: Mr. Bassett’s statement that voters are rejecting both parties – Without doubt, Democrats are the Worst messengers! The party has failed to effectively communicate what they HAVE done for working class people and for equal rights. The party knows how to win elections (at least presidential ones) but they have been big fat failures at helping their base understand how they are working for them. The GOP, in contrast, does a much better job, ironically, spinning their message with great effectiveness to low information voters while doing virtually nothing for them. That does need to change – and if Republicans fail to understand this given the debacle this presidential campaign has been for them – they don’t deserve to survive. A whole new conservative party needs to be formed. Democrats need to clean up their messaging and learn how to stand for their beliefs – and fight more effectively within the process. Obama wasted precious time early in his tenure by trying to work “with” Republicans. He should have gotten the message very quickly that they had no intention of working with him and he could have gotten more done for his base more quickly. Democrats have to be careful to not spend their energy fighting against absurd policies when they need to fight “for” their own policies…which, benefit directly the working class, which also just happens to be “their” base. A base which needs to be sold and reminded and appreciated.

      • Creigh says:

        Mime, I certainly don’t want to imply both-siderism in any way. I suppose the Ds felt they had to take certain stands in order to compete, and perhaps they did. In any case, I’m perfectly clear on what’s at stake in the general election.

        Also, you observe “the GOP does a better job spinning their message.” That’s true, but most often they do it using scare tactics. Unfortunately, exploiting people’s fears turns out to be an extremely effective technique.

      • 1mime says:

        Yes, scaring people is one approach, but Democrats do not do a good job of selling their positions and related achievements. They just don’t. It’s a weakness in the marketing side of the party that they need to work on. It hurts them.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Well, I see voters making some very Machiavellian moves like I have never before witnessed — Lifelong Democrats voting in the Republican primary for Trump in order to defeat Cruz; or voting for Cruz in order to defeat Trump; or voting for Trump to make it easier for Hillary to win the general election.

      Republicans who hate Trump but voting for him because supposedly he is the only Republican who can beat Hillary in the general election.

      And the list goes on. This election seems to be more about voting AGAINST someone than voting FOR someone, or voting for someone in a roundabout way.

      One good thing about this election is that I see a lot of voter passion from all sides, which sure beats voter apathy.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Also, as illustrated above, there are so many differing views of reality — on the one hand, that Trump is the only Republican who can beat Hillary in the general election; on the other hand, that Trump is the one Republican nominee who Hillary can beat for sure.

        Or as the Times article about marital bickering over Trump illustrates — one of the spouses (usually the husband) thinks he’s a breath of fresh air, and the wife believing he is the worst candidate to ever walk the earth.

  26. tuttabellamia says:

    What I want to know is how the heck can you officially announce the winner of a primary after counting just 10% of the vote? Something about an algorithm?

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      Because when there’s a clear winner, the numbers reflect that in entrance polling. For example, Hillary Clinton had such overwhelming margins among virtually every voting group in South Carolina that it was obvious she was going to win in a landslide, which she did.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I think they look at voting makeup of the first 10% or so, and extrapolate. While of course we all know that “blacks/Hispanics/evangelicals etc etc aren’t a mono voting bloc” I would bet that decades of voting history suggests that the ppl of bloc’s DO tend to vote together in a consistent, measureable degree, with a consistent margin of error.

  27. vikinghou says:

    Yesterday I watched Trump’s interview on CNN with Jake Tapper. I couldn’t believe my ears when he actually vacillated about denouncing David Duke and the KKK, after doing so last Friday. Perhaps he was tired, but that’s a question one should be able to answer while asleep! I said to myself that this may be the straw to break the camel’s back. We’ll see how this plays out.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      “Perhaps he was tired”

      Come on Coming. We know better. He decided that it was better politically to play dumb then give in to “political correctness”.

      He probably got some flack from his base after disavowing them on Friday. Not surprising considering a full 30% of his supporters think freeing the slaves was bad policy.

      He knew exactly what Tapper was asking. And if he truly has never heard of the KKK then he’s too stupid to be president.

      Either way it’s a disqualifying moment.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Coming = Viking

      • vikinghou says:

        The thing is, there have been countless disqualifying moments. Maybe this one will stick.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I still think his disqualifying moment will be when he disavows God or Jesus.

      • johngalt says:

        He bragged that he could shoot someone on 5th Avenue and wouldn’t lose votes. Saying he didn’t know anything about Duke is not going to cause ripples. He will just explain it away by saying he doesn’t care, that Duke is a loser that’s not worth his time thinking about.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        John, agreed, nothing will sway the Trumpettes at this point.

        But stuff like this absolutely lowers (or at least hardens) his ceiling, both in the remaining primary, and definitely in the general.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      The camel’s back blew out a long time ago. It’s just taken it this long for us to finally notice.

    • 1mime says:

      Today, House Speaker, Paul Ryan, delivered a scathing criticism of Trump for his KKK interview. While I agree that Trump was duplicitous at best, I was amused at Ryan’s statement about what “we” (hmmm, wonder who ‘we’ are?) should be talking about…..The GOP hasn’t shown much interest in the last seven years on policies to restore ‘the American idea’, whatever the heck he means by that!

      “This is the kind of moment where we should be having a serious debate about the policies needed to restore the American idea,” Ryan told reporters on Super Tuesday.”

      Yes! Let’s do talk about policies that restore American ideas: Equality in opportunity, education, pay, choice, voting; health care access; jobs. Instead, what is the conversation the GOP has BEEN having? Cut taxes more for upper class earners; build higher walls with more guards and send all those illegal people back home; abortion, abortion, abortion; global warming is not real; cut Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, Social Security…heck. cut ’em ALL!! Those people need to work harder!

      Yeah, I agree we should be having a serious debate – one that includes issues that are important to more than the GOP. Let’s deal with these areas of our country where people have lost jobs and savings due to industry changes and jobs outsourcing. Trump is talking about these things and, you know what, people are saying, “yeah, someone is listening”.

      Revolution? No, Message? Definitely.

  28. johngalt says:

    Cruz is not going to win a majority in Texas. The most favorable recent poll (for him) has him at 42%, but there are others that still have him in the high 20s.

    I’m curious, Chris. You’ve stated that you think many party precincts would not support Trump as the nominee. What about Cruz? He seems to be even more reviled, but for different reasons.

    • vikinghou says:

      Well, I’ll be doing my part tomorrow, voting against Cruz in the GOP primary.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        For what it’s worth, I voted Monday of last week, for Kasich.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        At one point I considered voting strategically — in my case, to vote for Cruz in order to defeat Trump — but then I decided to just cast a straightforward vote for the candidate of my choice — Kasich — even if turns out to be a wasted vote. I’m not up for games.In any case, a vote for Kasich is still a vote against Trump.

      • 1mime says:

        The “pick” of the litter, Tutta. I agree, even though I have some very strong disagreement with his positions on women’s rights. I just couldn’t make myself vote in the Republican Primary this year – first because I want HRC to have a strong showing, and second, because I didn’t want to add another vote to the GOP column.

    • 1mime says:

      You were correct, JG. Cruz won 40% of vote; Trump, 28%, Rubio, 19%….So, Cruz only gets a partial delegate award.

  29. flypusher says:

    John Oliver on Drumpf:

    It’s brilliant, it’s funny, and it will change zero minds in the Trump camp. But it will give us a chuckle.

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      Thanks, fly! I wouldn’t have seen this if you hadn’t posted it here. Great way to start my day (off).

    • johngalt says:

      I don’t believe I’ve ever seen a photo of Trump’s son before this video. He looks so slimy that he makes Ted Cruz seem human.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Oliver does the Lords work Fly.

      Also objectively hilarious as well.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      It occurred to me that this whole debacle could seriously hurt Trumps business model severely.

      I’d be interested to see how this affects his brand. The Trump name is supposed to represent wealth, high class, Quality, luxury, extravagance etc.

      This campaign really associates it much more to populism, poorly educated, lower class etc. The stuff that’s anathema to what Trump is trying to sell when he pastes his name everywhere.

      If you’re a builder, would you spend the millions it would cost to put the Trump name on your luxury condo building? I wouldn’t.

      The scrutiny that’s going to come from winning the presidential election could very well destroy his business.

    • Stephen says:

      Thanks. I enjoyed that. The old man needs to stay up late enough to watch John Oliver.

      • 1mime says:

        Your elder (1MIME) has learned how to DVR special programs and watch later. I can fast-forward through commercials and cut down the viewing time. Oliver is sharp. I do miss Jon Stewart…

  30. Glandu says:

    Damn. That’s nearly as complicated than the european parliament elections. And as unreadable.

    I guess the underlying reasons to rules choices is often tactical advantage for whoever makes the local rule. It’s the same here. For example, in France, the rationale behind the ever-changing rule is to have as few people from the Front National elected. Of course, when too many people vote for the party you’re trying to turn off, it can backfire(it did backfire last time, the Front National did grab 24 out of 74 available seats).

    And, of course, every other european countries has another system. IIRC, the brits have circonscriptions of one seat. One year, the British green had nearly 20% of the vote in the UK, but zero seats…which was the exact purpose of the system. While the french green had 3% of the vote, and 10% of the seats(thanks to their socialist allies). There also, the system worked as designed.

    Of course, in those circumstances, any candidate who says “you are being robbed”, be it a troll(Trump) or a well-educated person(Sanders), is welcome by the frustrated crowd. That’s your real problem right now. Sanders, little less, because he’s likely to face an hostile senate, and therefore won’t have free hands to do too many stupid things. Trump, OTOH, is especially dangerous, because the republican senate will bow to the Duce.

    My perception is, from the other side of the pond, that every other candidate still alive(except maybe Carson, and I’m not even sure, and he’s 99% dead anyways), is percieved as being part of a system that robs your voice. Clinton is a caricature, of course, but Cruz, Rubio, and Kasich are rather associated with the system, too. Which means angre people are likely to vote for the outliers Trump é Sanders.

    It’s fun to see from far, but also a little frightening. At least, the European parliament has a limited power.

    • 1mime says:

      The best aspect of the European system, IMO, is that the party that wins can implement their agenda without being shut down. The only way to stop the agenda is to go through the election process. In America, it’s obfuscation and parliamentary trickery throughout one’s tenure as an institutionalized means of blocking the agenda of the person/party that has been elected!

      Ah, Glandu, it still is true that: “He who has the gold, rules.”

      • Glandu says:

        They can, but do they really? Let’s see in France(I know better than other countries for obvious reasons).

        Everything that remains from Mitterand (81-95) is the abolition of the death penalty, and some kind of deregulation in the radio frequencies.

        Chirac(95-07) had promised to reduce the inequalities, and did nothing for reaching that goal. He was rather good at the international level, but sleepy inside.

        Sarkozy(07-12) had promised tons of things, began to implement them….and the crisis of 2008 forced him to unmake everything he had made. His program could work only when economy was over average. Bad luck, on average, economy is average… and sometimes even worse.

        Hollande(12-17?) had promised to fight finance, and made nothing so.

        He is a caricature of the previous presidents : just making noise, as strong as possible, to hide the fact that he in fact does nothing. The best example is the gay wedding. In France, that’s just 4 lines in the civil code. Doable in one week. Took him 6 months, and he did everything to have the religious extremists react as strong as possible. Muslims did not fall into the trap(they hid behind the catholics), but catholics did. And there’s been a lot of noise & polarization of the country for 6 months, in the middle of an economic crisis, and he made nothing to solve the actual problems – probably because he has no clue on how to solve them.

        So, of course, you can win the presidency, win the assembly(I don’t speak about the occurences with an assembly against the president, it was not common, and seems impossible today), and not do anything. Hell, in 2012; the socialists held the presidency, the assembly, the senate(first time ever!!!), all regions but one, more than 80% of departments, and a big majority of city councils. And they did not do anything(besides the gay wedding and a few details on the worker’s law). Since, they’ve lost their majority at the senate, a shitload of cities, a few department, and half of the regions.

        Of course, one of our problems is that out high-ranking officials, in the ministers, do the real job. They say whatever will please the current politician that is supposed to give them orders, but globally don’t feel influenced by him/her. (s)he will be replaced. Not them. Socialiste, Républicain, Centriste, Nationaliste, who cares? They just want the car with a driver. They have a car with a driver. And they are happy. And the officials ignore them. And drive the country where they want.

        To really apply a real program, not only shall you be elected with a clear majority, but also have the will to really do something for your country. Both don’t often fit together. The best election winners are rarely the more concerned by their country’s future.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree that achieving your goals in politics requires “will”, but, the American Republican Party has used rules (filibuster, gerrymander, committee schedule, “holds”, etc) to block President Obama’s ability to function. From Day One. Not only do I think this is patently unfair and un-Democratic, but it doesn’t allow government to function through a compromise, which is necessary in a Democracy. Thus, Obama has used Executive Orders to get some things done which is about all he’s been able to do.

        Adding to all the insults O has been levied, this year, the President’s budget has not been accorded the normal hearing traditionally performed for all Presidents. In addition, there is the widely known refusal to even schedule a hearing on his SC nominee which is not only his right, but his responsibility.

        Things are so out of balance and so insulting that it is no wonder the Republican Party is facing its own crisis of leadership. Live by the sword; die by the sword.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        We’ve had enough GOP Presidents in the last quarter century to make it pretty scary if an election meant the party that won got to implement its ideas.

        I think I’ll take frustrating obstructionism to avoid having abortion prohibited, in vitro fertilization stopped, mass deportations, and slashed welfare and education spending.

      • 1mime says:

        Homer – I don’t want to throw out parliamentary procedure, but neither do I want it used abusively. Clearly, the goal during O’s tenure has been to block everything he advocates to make him “look” ineffective, and essentially, “be” ineffective. What is lost is the work of our nation that doesn’t get done. THAT bothers me. It’s an abuse of the process, which point I’m sure we’ll be in accord.

        The democratic system of checks and balance is designed to prevent one individual or party from controlling the governing process without benefit of public debate. That is not happening. As much as I disagree with many of the positions of Republicans, I totally support their right to present them and debate them, and win with them if they’ve got the better argument and support. What I oppose is opposition which is personally driven versus issue driven. On issue after issue, Republicans have blocked Obama rather than debate and decide on the merits. Frequently, there are issues on which the majority broadly agree (guns, immigration and tax reform, jobs, to name a few) but will not entertain any outcome if Obama favors it. That’s obstructing the work of the nation. Two recent examples – blocking even a hearing on O’s SCOTUS nominee and blocking his Budget Director from presenting the President’s budget. How can that be good for the nation or fair?

        It is the abuse of the process that I speak of, not the legitimacy. No one wins when our country is not fairly governed or effectively run. No one. Sooner or later (now, maybe?), the other shoe is gonna drop.

    • flypusher says:

      I could wish for a no-confidence vote right now.

  31. Rob Ambrose says:

    Jeff Sessions with the Trump endorsement .

    Unsurprisingly

    • texan5142 says:

      Did you see Sessions speak? Drunk or stroke?

    • Tom says:

      You are going to start seeing more Republicans endorse Trump.

      Even if you disagree with his political positions on everything, there are going to be jobs in a hypothetical Trump Administration. So if it starts becoming obvious that he’s going to be the Republican nominee (barring intervention by the RNC) there is reason to endorse Trump. Particularly for guys like Sessions who don’t actually disagree with him on much.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Super Tuesday will exacerbate this dynamic exponentially, which in turn furthers the fracturing of the Republican Party. The only surprise was Chris Christie being the first proverbial domino to fall.

        After Trump crushes Rubio in Florida is where it really gets interesting. The last of the begrudging holdouts should all but fall after that and we’ll see where the line between them and the hardliners stand. Those divisions will be of particular interest to keep an eye on in the immediate future.

      • 1mime says:

        “After Trump crushes Rubio in FL…”

        It’s suck up time…………

      • 1mime says:

        This WaPo article agrees with you, Tom. One especially telling quote from SC Gov. Niki Haley, clearly states the GOP problem….only, she doesn’t “get” that what she says is exactly why they have the Trump factor!! Reap what you sow and try to learn from it, Niki!

        Gov. Haley: ““It’s scary,” South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who has endorsed Rubio, said on ABC’s “This Week.” She added: “I think what he’ll (Trump) do to the Republican Party is really make us question who we are and what we’re about. And that’s something we don’t want to see happen.”

        That’s Exactly what the Republican Party should do: question who they are and what they’re about. The last sentence says it all: “And that’s something we don’t want to see happen.” It’s also why they’re choking on Trump’s dust.

        Another interesting paragraph in the article deals with the Trump campaign’s awareness that they need to clearly understand GOP convention rules so the election doesn’t get “stolen” from him. Recall that there are forces within the donor base and others who are seeking advice from a FL GOP consulting firm about a brokered convention.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/divisions-within-gop-over-trumps-candidacy-are-growing/2016/02/28/97b16010-de3a-11e5-8d98-4b3d9215ade1_story.html?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_most

  32. MassDem says:

    Report from the field:

    Passions are running high in Massachusetts.
    On the way to Nantasket Beach today, my husband & I passed this enormous “Trump for President” sign. The front was all scorched where someone had tried to set it on fire. In the upper left corner was a smaller sign that read:
    Warning
    No Trespassers
    Violators will be shot
    Survivors will be shot again

    I wish I could post the pic of this thing; it was truly a sight to behold.

    • 1mime says:

      Send the photo to file and attach it to one of your posts here. That little ditty needs to be enjoyed by more people!

      • MassDem says:

        epic fail :/

        and after I risked my life getting the photo too!

      • 1mime says:

        We Dems are tough ladies!

      • 1mime says:

        Just finished watching the Oscars…..Beautiful sets, lots of social commentary….go Hollywood! Leonard DiCaprio commented on how hard it was to find snow during the many years of filming Revenant, and exhorted all to support the initiative on global warming. Lots of focus on Black performers and other people of color for equal opportunity in film. My fav film won (Spotlight) and fav actress for The Room. Was disappointed that Stallone didn’t win best supporting actor but Rylance was excellent in Bridge of Spies.

        So much talent….G’night.

    • flypusher says:

      I know that there has been plenty of childishness in past Presidential elections, but this one has got to be a contender for one of the worst ever.

    • texan5142 says:

      Watching the racist fest with Trump and Sessions in Alabama it is disgusting. Sessions sounded drunk or having a stroke when he was talking.

  33. 1mime says:

    Note Shelby “used to be” a Democrat…..Weren’t they all?

    • Tom says:

      Yes, see Lifer’s previous posts. For a long time running as a Democrat was the ONLY way to get elected to office in Alabama (as well as much of the Deep South.)

      There are some Republicans in the South who were always Republicans… notably the Bushes, I think KBH started out as a Republican as well, but they were the exception and not the rule.

    • johngalt says:

      There is a term for it, not much heard anymore: “yellow dog Democrat,” as in, I’d vote for a yellow dog if it were a Democrat.

      The Bush family doesn’t count. They’re Connecticut Republicans from way back. George H.W. moving to Texas to find black gold didn’t change his stripes.

  34. antimule says:

    So what’s the prediction? Trump gets enough delegates to win but not more than 50%. Then they appoint Rubio on the convention. He loses to Clinton.

    Is that how this is gonna be?

    • 1mime says:

      Why are you certain that Hillary will beat Rubio?

      • antimule says:

        Among other things, Trump voters will be too angry to vote for another “establishment” candidate.

      • n1cholas says:

        Rubio is an empty suit.

        Look at his performance in the Republican debates.

        Now, go back and watch HRC at the Benghazi Today, Benghazi Tomorrow, Benghazi Forever hearings.

      • 1mime says:

        I couldn’t agree more about Rubio being “an empty suit”, BUT, the GOP establishment has selected Rubio as their Trump alternative and what we’re fighting is not “Rubio” but an all out end run against Trump through the “empty suit” of Rubio, who is deemed much more acceptable than Kasich and Carson and Cruz- who is uniformly disliked by all.

        Don’t count Rubio out….which appalls me to state.

      • n1cholas says:

        And how well is the very base reacting to the establishment attempting to get Rubio, or anyone else, to be the candidate.

        If Trump continues to win, and the establishment rigs it so that Rubio is the candidate, expect the base to stay home.

        Hence, Rubio as the candidate for President = win for any Democratic Tomato Can.

      • 1mime says:

        Yeah, well, in this political climate, a few days might as well be six months. It appears (believe it or not) that the establishment will also rally behind Cruz if Rubio can’t pull off a FL win. Of course, Trump knows this and he will fight for the state – which is exactly what he should do.

      • n1cholas says:

        Cruz will get slaughtered.

        Honestly, the only Republican that I think can win is Trump, and even there I’m doubtful he can pull it off.

        I’ve been saying since August that Trump as nominee destroys the Republican party as a national party, at least for a few election cycles.

        Take a look around. Enjoy it a little bit. The party of oligarchy and fascism-lite is getting a lot of sunlight.

      • 1mime says:

        N1cholas, I’ve been meaning to comment on your icon. Are you a NASA guy?

      • n1cholas says:

        Not NASA in the sense that I work for NASA or the space industry, but I consider NASA one of the best programs the US government has ever implemented, and that it is negligently underfunded. I do find the avatar of a cat in a spacesuit pretty funny though 🙂

      • 1mime says:

        Me, too! I enjoy your comments. Glad you’re hanging around. I agree with you about NASA. They’ve had to scrap for every penny and the politics around their funding is horrible.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        To say that Republicans circumventing their base to nominate Rubio would be like whacking a beehive with a stick is an understatement. It would be nothing short of an unforgivable betrayal by the “establishment” that people would go absolutely ballistic over. Not even a prayer that they would come out and vote for Marco en masse with that hanging over their heads.

        Needless to say, I don’t believe they would do that.

      • antimule says:

        @Ryan Ashfyre

        Then what? Trump as a nominee?

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Not of the Republican Party as we currently know it; the fractures are evident. Some will fall in line behind The Donald (Chris Christie, Jeff Sessions, Jan Brewer, etc.) while others resolutely won’t (Lindsey Graham, Susan Collins and virtually every other even-minded Republican with a spine).

        You read articles about how McConnell is readying threatened incumbents to distance themselves from Trump if he’s the nominee. Best of luck with that, Majority Leader (for the moment).

        Get ready for those fractures to start blowing wide open after Super Tuesday and after Rubio gets slaughtered in Florida.

      • 1mime says:

        I will never forget Jan Brewer wagging her finger in President Obama’s face. Never. Nothing she does surprises me.

      • 1mime says:

        Big business is going to get more testy as their cases wind their way to the appellate courts and lose and know, a la Dow, that it’s better to settle than to chance a SC that will “OMG” try their case on its merits!

    • Griffin says:

      I think he will get an outright majority.

      You can win a majority with less than 50% of the vote. If Cruz doesn’t reach the 50% winner-take-all threshold in Texas and thus allows Trump to grab a handful of them, it’s hard to imagine Trump isn’t going to be the nominee.

      • 1mime says:

        I am really interested as to how TX votes Tuesday. The TPs (plural) are very hard workers and they put Cruz in to begin with. They are going to have his back. I would love it if he failed to get 50% more so because I want him “gone” from this race and from the Senate. But, his base is going to turn out. The question is, will Trump’s? Or Rubio’s? Gonna get real intense Tuesday night around 9pm.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I think it’s all moot, Trump will win 50+% of the delegates.

    • 1mime says:

      Lifer’s been mighty quiet on a “what if” scenario for the GOP convention. Granted, that’s months from now, but time is precious when you’re trying to circumvent a category 5 hurricane. In listening today to CNBC financial news, there was discussion with hedge fund fund managers about the Dow Chemical decision to pay a fine vs chancing SCOTUS upholding the lower court ruling through a tied decision. Interestingly, most said they didn’t think anything permanent would be settled politically (in so far as impacting financial markets) by the much ballyhooed March 15th deadline. They feel markets will wait until much closer to the election to see how things shake out.

      ION, I couldn’t help but think about the first (sort of) democratic elections in Iran that are ongoing. Turnout is expected to be 60% or more over the 8 day voting period. At present, the moderate candidate is winning, though the conservative election committee decides “who” can even run for election. (12K applied, over half were denied). Still, people are walking miles to vote with none of the conveniences we enjoy in America with our flawed process. It’s sobering to watch a third world country’s people go to so much effort to vote. As one of the commentators explained about the flaws in their voting process: …The Iranian people are thrilled just to be “able” to vote. They don’t expect a “revolution”, they know that for them, progress will be infinitely slow, but still, progresss.

      There are some lessons to be learned here.

  35. 1mime says:

    Lifer, Thanks for the recap of the primary process. Here’s a question – Is the current system of awarding delegates (proportional) to Congressional representation, fair? Has this process ever been looked at for change?

    • 1mime says:

      I know there is a TX case pending before SCOTUS asking the court for a determination of representation using total population vs citizens only which could have an impact on Congressional allocation. I am aware that the current census method impacts other issues. Has any other method been considered, and how does one protect against mid-year census gambits such as occurred in TX under Tom Delay?

      For that matter, does the gerrymandering process disrupt the Democratic process of one-man/one-vote? If so, do you anticipate that this could be a coincidental part of any challenge to change the current census process?

  36. stephen says:

    Just like I said Hispanics are not homogenous neighter are Christians.I am not surprise Rubio or Cruz are not cleaning up on the Hispanic vote. Their positions in many ways are out of step with that group. Most Hispanics are not Cubans.

    As a Christian man I will never vote for Cruz or Trump. No love in their walk. Even though being the great grandson of a Confederate War veteran, my Christian faith puts me at great odds with Jim Crow. Trump or Cruz may win Dixicrat primary voters only to lose the general. I highly resent being put in the same group as Evangelical voters voting for Cruz or Trump. Christian voters are a diverse group. The ones voting for the haters are a minority.

    • lomamonster says:

      “No love in their walk” – – amazingly precise, and it will be a better world if indeed those haters are vanquished by voters sharing your considerate view.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I think Christians like you are the true “silent majority”. I have no love for any organized religion, but I know many good and decent Christians. Its only the ones I see on TV that are moral and ethical bankrupts.

    • flypusher says:

      “I highly resent being put in the same group as Evangelical voters voting for Cruz or Trump. Christian voters are a diverse group. The ones voting for the haters are a minority.”

      I don’t blame you. It’s easy to make excuses, but hard work to stick by your principles:

      http://www.npr.org/2016/02/25/468149440/why-do-evangelicals-support-donald-trump-a-pastor-explains

      I think the concept of not looking to the government to enforce any particular religion’s moral standards is a good idea. But that’s still no excuse to vote for someone like Trump who is both profane and unqualified for the job just because he looks strong.

    • 1mime says:

      Stephen, you are a principled man.

  37. Griffin says:

    There actually might be more Vermonters registered as Republicans than you might expect, if I recall correctly it wasn’t until relatively recently that it ceased to be one of the hotbeds of the progressive wing of the GOP. There may be some Jim Jeffords type leftovers.

    I think Vermont actually gives us pretty decent Senators despite being such a small state. George Aiken, Jim Jeffords, and I even appreciate Bernie Sanders for bringing new policy proposals into the public conversation (much like a I could appreciate Ron Paul during his non-Confederate moments) even if I don’t think he should be the nominee.

  38. irapmup says:

    I don’t think the Republican Party has been Republican in anything, but name since Nixon and in my Independent opinion we may never see the likes of true American conservatism again.

  39. flypusher says:

    I did a little Googling on the Alabama Senate primary. My, oh-My!!

    https://newrepublic.com/article/130384/richard-shelby-talking-like-bernie-sanders

    These are indeed strange and interesting political times!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Goodreads

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 474 other followers

%d bloggers like this: