Sorry to be so late in posting today. I’m really struggling with a sinus/chest cold and I don’t have much energy these days.
Today’s primary elections will actually be bigger for the Democrats than Super Tuesday was. The media is playing up the possibility that Sanders could win in Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri; but even if that happens, which I think is doubtful, Clinton should win handily in Florida and North Carolina. She will most likely end the night with an expanded delegate lead.
Trump will probably sew up the Republican nomination, especially if he beats Marco Rubio in Florida, which looks likely.
The attacks on Hillary Clinton are escalating as she gets closer to becoming the first woman presidential nominee of a major political party.
It’s kind of difficult to remember now, but at the beginning of the primary campaign, Bernie Sanders promised to run a positive campaign focused on the issues. It’s been quite awhile now since he switched to attacking Hillary Clinton personally and using innuendo to question her integrity. NBC News examines his move to negative campaigning.
The candidate who went out of his way to avoid attacking his rival throughout the summer, fall and winter has relentlessly unleashed on Clinton for three straight weeks, focusing on familiar talking points now strung together as a fixture of his stump speech.
“Now let me say a few words about some of the strong differences of opinion that I have with Secretary Clinton,” he now normally begins one portion of his speeches before hitting her on a litany of issues. The go-to critiques include trade, the Iraq War, and Clinton’s use of Super PACs.
Boos and heckles quickly arrive from his supporters as they outwardly delight in hearing the differences between their candidate and the Democratic frontrunner.
Sanders no longer makes any effort to tone down his followers’ abuse of Clinton and her supporters–whether in rallies or on social media. Instead, he encourages it.
Depending on the day, Sanders also has dinged Clinton on her and her husband’s support of the “homophobic” Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and her support from former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.
“I do not want Henry Kissinger to ever praise me!” he roared during a Michigan rally at Grand Valley State University near Grand Rapids.
The shift in tone has been drastic. In 2015 and early 2016, even uttering Clinton’s name would draw headlines—then unwanted by the candidate himself.
“I cannot walk down the street—Secretary Clinton knows this—without being told how much I have to attack Secretary Clinton,” Sanders told NBC News’ Andrea Mitchell during the NBC’s January Democratic Debate, “Want to get me on the front page of the paper? I make some vicious attack. I have avoided doing that. I am trying to run an issue-oriented campaign.”
He still emphasizes issues, but things have changed since that debate.
They certainly have. Sanders has become just another dirty politician shouting lies and half-truths about his opponent. In on-line forums, his followers have taken his behavior as encouragement for stunningly sexist and racist attacks on Clinton. The similarities between the Trump and Sanders campaign are growing as time goes on. I don’t like to think what will happen if Sanders loses in Illinois or Ohio tonight.
Go to the NBC link to read the rest. It’s a long piece.
The media has found another gaffe to hang on Hillary. In her “town hall” with Chris Matthews on MSNBC last night, she said that “we didn’t lose a single person” in the 2011 Libyan intervention. Naturally, that is being interpreted to mean that she has forgotten the deaths of Ambassador Christopher Stevens and four others in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2012. Politico:
“Libya was a different kind of calculation. And we didn’t lose a single person. We didn’t have a problem in supporting our European and Arab allies in working with NATO,” the former secretary of state said during an MSNBC town hall on Monday night.
Clinton may have been referring strictly to the U.S.-backed overthrow of Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi in 2011, which indeed saw no loss of American lives and cost just around $1 billion. But her comments ignore the 2012 attacks at the U.S. mission and CIA outpost in Benghazi, which killed four people including U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.
Right. After years of being attacked and blamed for the deaths of four people, Clinton has probably just forgotten all about them. Good grief.
The Sanders campaign committed a far worse gaffe yesterday.
Jane Sanders appeared with racist, anti-immigrant Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona and actually let him lead her on a tour of his “tent city.” It’s not clear the campaign planned this meeting, but why didn’t they hustle her away immediately when Arpaio showed up?
Channel 12 News: Jane Sanders meets with Sheriff Joe Arpaio, tours Tent City.
Jane Sanders wasn’t planning a tour of Tent City on Monday, but Sheriff Joe Arpaio made her an offer she couldn’t refuse.
Sanders planned to view Tent City from the fence, with the help of Puente leader Carlos Garcia. But Arpaio hustled over here from another news conference and the two of them talked policy, politics and Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream. Sanders also asked inmates about the conditions and why they were in Tent City.
And of course, we know that Sanders surrogate Ben Cohen told Fox News he didn’t know if he could vote for Hillary Clinton in November. Jane Sanders later tweeted that she wasn’t expecting Arpaio to show up, but the damage was done.
As an antidote to the Clinton bashing from Sanders and the media, I suggest reading this post by Peter Daou at Blue Nation Review: Hillary Clinton Is (By Far) the Most Trusted Candidate in 2016.
Let’s define “most trusted” in its literal — and most measurable — sense: More people trust X than anyone else.
And let’s further refine that definition to an act of trust, such as a vote or public endorsement….
Hillary has been endorsed by a greater number of respected public figures and organizations than any other candidate. And more importantly, she leads all other candidates in the popular vote….
Take Bernie Sanders. He had the opportunity to vote against Hillary’s nomination for Secretary of State. After all, he voted against Tim Geithner for Treasury Secretary. Instead, he voted to confirm her, an affirmation of his trust in her ability to represent America to the world….
Think about the numerous political leaders, public officials, organizations, and labor unions who trust Hillary with their future. President Obama, John Lewis, Emily’s List, Lilly Ledbetter, Dolores Huerta, Jim Clyburn, Planned Parenthood, Human Rights Campaign, Julian Castro, Brady Campaign, Eric Holder, League of Conservation Voters, Tammy Baldwin, Kirsten Gillibrand, Claire McCaskill, Cory Booker, Sheila Jackson Lee, Bernice King, and countless more….
NEARLY 5 MILLION VOTERS HAVE PLACED THEIR TRUST IN HILLARY.
That’s more than any other candidate in the 2016 election.
Let’s see what the media is saying about the possible outcomes of today’s primaries.
Although this Tuesday will be less frantic than Super Tuesday two weeks ago, when 12 states and one territory held primary elections, it’s just as important. By 16 March, the race for the White House could look very different depending on how Florida, Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina and Ohio vote.
That’s partly because the delegate numbers in those states are so high – in total, 367 Republican and 792 Democratic delegates are available on 15 March. That brings us significantly closer to the finish line of having just two presidential candidates: at the moment, 33% of Democratic delegates have been pledged but by the time the polls have closed on 15 March, that number will rise to 50%. For Republicans, pledged delegates will jump from 46% to 61%.
Those percentages just mean that playing catch-up gets harder from here. Hillary Clinton is still on track for the nomination – to change that, Bernie Sanders needs to pick up at least 326 of the pledged delegates (in the Democratic race there are also 712 “superdelegates” who are not pledged to a specific candidate based on primary results, so they’re less relevant here).
On the Republican side:
The Republican contest is also likely to change significantly. If, for example,Marco Rubio fails again to pick up a single delegate (and polling suggests that’s a real possibility), his pursuit of the 1,237 delegates needed to win the Republican nomination becomes futile – even if he were to win every single remaining delegate after 15 March. That’s partly because, unlike Democrats, Republicans do not always distribute delegates in proportion to votes. In fact, four states holding Republican primaries on 15 March will be the first in this election to assign delegates on a winner-takes-all basis, which is why this date is such a turning point in the 2016 political calendar.
Check out some interesting charts as well as detailed discussions of each state’s demographics at the link.
The Washington Post: March 15 primaries: Will voting in 5 states cement front-runners?
Voters are casting ballots in the five states across the Midwest and Southeast holding primaries Tuesday — contests that could shore up the two front-runners or breathe new life into the lagging campaigns of their challengers.
On the Democratic side, Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) was working to pull off more come-from-behind wins in states where voters feel damaged by globalization, allowing him to claim momentum from Hillary Clinton. The former secretary of state enjoys a sizable lead in delegates but has not been able to seal the nomination.
The contests are especially important on the Republican side, offering a chance for billionaire Donald Trump’s remaining rivals to finally slow his march to the nomination with two winner-take-all contests that have particularly high stakes for a pair of favorite sons, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Gov. John Kasich of Ohio.
This one is a long and interesting read. I suggest you check out the whole thing at the link.
Rubio, who began his White House campaign 11 months ago as a hero of Florida Republicans, now faces the prospect of defeat in his home state. For years, Republicans believed that Rubio was destined to be a presidential nominee and that even if he fell short in 2016, he would be well-positioned to run for governor in 2018.
But polls suggest Rubio might not just lose Florida — but get thumped here. A Quinnipiac survey released Monday found Rubio trailing Trump by 24 points in his home state.
A loss of that magnitude could be devastating to Rubio, and leave him in a tough spot if he ever wanted to seek public office again.
Quite a comedown. It will be interesting to see what happens when the polls close in Florida.
Florida’s polls close at 7PM ET (8PM in the Panhandle), North Carolina’s and Ohio’s at 7:30 ET, and Illinois’s and Missouri’s at 8PM ET.
So . . . what are you hearing and reading? Let us know in the comment thread, and please stick around for an exciting day! I’ll add a live blog later on for discussion of the returns.
Today the Republicans will caucus in Nevada, and Donald Trump will probably win. The Republican leadership is slowly moving through the stages of grief as they come to terms with the likelihood that the clowniest clown in the clown car will be at the top of their ticket in November.
Politico: GOP wakes up to Trump nightmare.
Establishment Republicans are reckoning with something they thought would never happen: That it might soon be too late to stop Donald Trump.
With the controversial businessman the clear front-runner heading into Nevada and next week’s Super Tuesday contests, there’s an emerging consensus that the odds of dislodging him are growing longer by the day. Whispered fears that Trump could become the Republican nominee have given way to a din of resigned conventional wisdom – with top party officials and strategists openly wondering what the path to defeating him will be….
Lately they are telling themselves that if only the weaker candidates would drop out maybe Rubio or Cruz could win.
The biggest hurdle confronting the mogul’s four rivals is that they continue to divide support among themselves. In each of the three contests that have been held so for, the anti-Trump field has fractured, making it impossible for any single contender to surpass him. A similar dynamic could play out again in Nevada, with Trump failing to win a majority of support but still earning more than his opponents.
While the field has winnowed somewhat in recent days, the compressed nature of this year’s Republican primary calendar means there is precious little time for the anti-Trump field to consolidate. Should Trump notch his third consecutive win on Tuesday, some foresee him steamrolling through Super Tuesday a week later, when a quarter of the party’s delegates are awarded. A batch of newly released polls show him with sizable leads in several of those states, including Massachusetts and Georgia.
“Either Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio would have a shot at the nomination, but I don’t see how they can stop Donald Trump while both of them are splitting votes,” said Al Cardenas, a former Florida Republican Party and American Conservative Union chairman who had supported Jeb Bush. “I don’t see either senator, both of whom have strong-willed backers, dropping out any time soon. Maybe after March 15, but will that be too late to stop Trump?”
It should be funny to see the GOP panicking, but I dread having to watch the repulsive spectacle that the presidential election would be if Trump were one of the candidates. The primary race has already been way beyond disgusting.
Washington Post: GOP candidates make intense 11th-hour arguments in Nevada.
Front-runner Donald Trump delivered a broadside against competitor Ted Cruz, telling thousands in Las Vegas he thinks the Texas senator “is sick.”
“There’s something wrong with this guy,” said Trump.
For his part, Cruz spent significant time Monday seeking to explain the ouster of his spokesman for tweeting a story that falsely accused White House hopeful Marco Rubio of insulting the Bible. And when the candidates weren’t directing their fire at each other, they used scattered appearances on the eve of Tuesday’s caucuses to assail Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
So raucous was this day that Trump stopped short at one point in his talk to bemoan the very delegate-selection he was in Nevada to tap.
“Forget the word caucus,” he told a crowd of some 5,000. “Just go out and vote, OK?” At another point, he said, “What the hell is caucus?”
This is the kind of idiocy that we have to look forward to this fall.
Ted Cruz tried to steal some of Trump’s thunder by promising to deport 12 million undocumented immigrants. The Dallas Morning News:
Ted Cruz said…that he would use federal immigration officers to round up and deport all 12 million people in the country illegally — a markedly tougher stance that he has struck in the past.
“Yes, we should deport them,” Cruz told Fox host Bill O’Reilly. “That’s what ICE exists for. We have law enforcement that looks for people who are violating the laws, that apprehends them and deports them.”
The toughening stance comes after a disappointing, if narrow, third place finish in South Carolina on Saturday, with immigration hardliner Donald Trump strengthening his grip on the race.
“There’s no change here,” Cruz spokeswoman Catherine Frazier said late Monday by email. “Cruz has been very clear: people who are here illegally should be deported. That is the law today. Period. They broke the law, they face the consequence. ICE exists for that purpose and they should continue to do their job. And on top of that any law enforcement that encounters those here illegally should follow the law and deport them.”
Marco Rubio is still the GOP “establishment’s” chosen candidate, but it’s difficult to see how he has much chance against Trump.
Here’s Paul Waldman at The Week: Donald Trump is about to do terrible things to Marco Rubio.
As bullies go, Donald Trump is unusually skilled.
When Trump decides to go after you, he considers carefully both your weak points and the audience for his attack. So when he decided to pummel Jeb Bush — apparently for his own amusement, as much as out of any real political concerns — he hit upon the idea that Bush was “low energy,” something Bush had a hard time countering without sounding like a whiny grade-schooler saying, “Am not!” More than anything else it was a dominance display, a way of showing voters he could push Jeb around and there was nothing Jeb could do about it. With a primary electorate primed by years of watching their candidates fetishize manliness and aggression, the attack touched a nerve.
And now with the Republican race effectively narrowed to three candidates, the one Trump hasn’t bothered to go after too often — Marco Rubio — must prepare for the mockery and rumor-mongering that will surely be coming his way from the frontrunner. Whether he can withstand it could go a long way toward determining how this race turns out.
Until now, Trump has been relatively soft on Rubio. But with the increasing possibility that Rubio could be the greatest threat to Trump winning the nomination, he’s almost certain to go after him. If the past is any guide, Trump will throw a bunch of different attacks Rubio’s way until he happens upon one that seems to resonate; then he’ll stick with it as long as it works. Trump is already dabbling in Rubio birtherism (though he doesn’t seem quite committed to it), but eventually he’ll find a line of personal criticism with just the right note of cruelty and derision….
Rubio may have avoided Trump’s wrath up until now, but that won’t last. The only question is what brand of contempt Trump will heap on him. It might be some kind of attack based on Rubio’s ethnicity, or it might be the same kind of you’re-a-girly-man insults he used on Bush. That could be effective, since Rubio does look like he didn’t graduate high school all that long ago. He could go after Rubio’s occasionally shaky finances, which Trump surely looks on with utter contempt, since as far as he’s concerned, not being rich makes you a loser.
To be honest, the insanity is really getting to me today. I can barely stand to read about these clowns anymore, much less actually watch them spew their hateful nonsense on TV. That’s why I’ve illustrated this post with art by children and adults about world peace.
A couple more links on Nevada:
On the Democratic side, Senator Bernie Sanders is starting to look really desperate. Yesterday, instead of campaigning in South Carolina, where the primary is this Saturday, he came to Boston and then held a rally at another university–U. Mass Amherst. The appearance in Boston was billed as a “press conference,” but Sanders didn’t take questions. He just gave a variation of his stump speech with some more mean-spirited than usual attacks on Hillary Clinton thrown in. NBC News reports:
BOSTON—Just two days after losing to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the Nevada caucuses, Senator Bernie Sanders launched a broadside against his rival, aggressively emphasizing differences between himself and Clinton on issues of campaign finance and trade policy.
“What I intend to do over the next number of weeks is kind of contrast my record to Secretary Clinton’s” Sanders began as he addressed the press at Boston’s International Association of Ironworkers, Local 7.
Keeping true to his word, the Vermont senator — who boasts of having never run a negative campaign — dove into a litany of contrast points he sees between himself and Clinton, launching some of the most direct swipes Sanders has taken at his competitor during this campaign season.
“I am delighted that Secretary Clinton month after month seems to be adopting more and more of the positions that we have advocated, that’s good,” he said.
“And in fact, she is beginning to use a lot of the language and phraseology that we have used,” Sanders added, joking that he saw a TV ad and thought it was him speaking despite Clinton’s photo being pictured in the spot.
Sanders hit Clinton hardest on her use of a Super PAC— the pro-Clinton Priorities USA – and used the group to tie her to Wall Street and big donor influences.
Nothing new there–just the same tired old smears and innuendo.
The headline in The Boston Globe this morning is kind of pathetic if you know anything about where most of the delegates are going to be won.
The Democratic primary could be effectively decided within the next two weeks, if Hillary Clinton’s campaign gets the outcome they’re looking for. With more than 1,000 delegates up for grabs, early March will be do-or-die for Bernie Sanders’ campaign….
“On Tuesday, March 1, we’re going to make history here in Massachusetts,” Sanders told a crowd Monday at UMass Amherst. “This great state is going to lead us forward to a political revolution.”
If Sanders’ political revolution is going anywhere on Super Tuesday, it will have to be in states like Massachusetts, where he has a demographic advantage [meaning lots of white liberals]….
As of Monday night, Clinton leads Sanders in pledged delegates 52 to 51, after votes were cast in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada. Clinton is expected to trounce in South Carolina, where she has the strong support of black voters. Polls also show strong leads for the former secretary of state in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Texas, and Virginia—all of which vote March 1.
But even if Sanders wins in states with lots of white people–like Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Colorado–there no way he will win enough delegates to compete with Clinton. I just don’t see a path to the nomination for him when he’s polling so badly with people of color.’
I actually think it’s time for Clinton supporters to begin showing empathy and compassion for Sanders supporters–especially the young ones who really don’t understand how politics works. They are going to have broken hearts soon, and we need to help bind their wounds and make them feel welcome in the party. I don’t think we should start telling Bernie to quit–let him go on as long as he wants and let his followers vote for him.
More stories to check out:
Pew Research Center: Majority of Public Wants Senate to Act on Obama’s Court Nominee.
New York Times: Seas are Rising at Fastest Rate in Last 28 Centuries.
Politico: Spike Lee backs Sanders in radio ad.
Politico: Ben Carson: Obama was ‘raised white.’
Mass Politics Profs: Warren Won’t Endorse Sanders.
AP: Gun maker seeks dismissal of lawsuit over Newtown shooting. (Thanks to the bill Sanders voted for.)
Politico: Bernie’s Spring Break Blues. “When Bernie Sanders will need college students the most, they’ll be watching Netflix and partying.”
So . . . what stories are you following today?
So, we’re headed into Mardi Gras 2016 down here in New Orleans. Some big football game in some other city just wrapped up the season. New Hampshire has its first in the country presidential primary tomorrow and somewhere out there Marco Rubio is having a terrible very bad day! Yasssssss!!! Oh, and Happy Year of the Male Fire Monkey!!! Tashi Losar! This is a very eventful lunar period in many ways.
Lundi Gras is the traditional resting day for us before the big day. My plans include making groceries at Rouse’s and picking up dog food at Bark Market. The Kings of Rex and Zulu will appear today. Today there is one parade. It’s the Krewe of Proteus which was founded in 1882. Their floats are quite historical as they use the original chassis and keep many of their traditional designs.
The Krewe of Proteus parade is based on Egyptian mythology. Proteus was the son of Poseidon, herded Poseidon’s seals, the great bull seal at the center of the harem. He can tell the future, change his shape and will only answer to someone who can capture him.
The images today are historical drawings of old floats and costumes from Proteus.
Here’s some more information on Proteus from the NOLA History Guy. One of the things he mentions is the Ordinance passed by the City Council to get Krewes to be more racially diverse. The New Orleans Celebration does have some really deep roots in racism as well as class.
The Council’s unanimous vote came after leaders of six prominent, mostly white parade clubs had pledged to begin trying to integrate “racially and ethnically” by 1993.
Despite objections from civil rights advocates, the Council followed the recommendation of a committee appointed by Mayor Sidney Barthelemy to study the issue. The committee began its deliberations during the furor that arose after the law was proposed last fall by Councilwoman Dorothy Mae Taylor, who is black.
As passed by the Council in December, the ordinance, which takes effect in 1994, would have denied parade and liquor permits to any Carnival clubs, called krewes, that had membership barriers based on “race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex or sexual orientation, age, physical condition or disability.”
Krewes would have had the burden of proving they did not discriminate, and leaders of clubs found to be in violation would have been subject to a $300 fine and up to five months in jail. Watered Down Twice
In February, the Council deleted the jail-sentence provision and removed the burden of proof from the clubs, placing it instead on their accusers.
On Thursday the Council allowed krewes to remain all-male or all-female and softened enforcement of the law. The city now must dismiss any discrimination complaint against a krewe if the club submits an affidavit pledging that it does not discriminate. Change Called ‘Absurd’
If you’d like to read more on this, I suggest Jame’s Gills’ Book Lords of Misrule: Mardi Gras and the Politics of Race in New Orleans. I read it last year and it was quite enlightening.
I’ve been thinking about these things because of Beyonce and the release of her new video Formation which is fierce by any standard. She’s gone full throttle social justice advocate for women, girls, and African Americans. It’s got slaps at the response to Katrina and a major nod to BLM. It openly celebrates female sexuality too. She sang at that football game whose name I just can’t quite recall. Responses to both video and performance include a plethora of items that show our country just cannot get beyond the racial divide. Panther’s quarterback Cam Newton and Beyonce have both been the subject of some rather nasty Twitters and such.
Members of the National Sheriffs’ Association meeting in Washington turned their backs on Beyonce during a Super Bowl halftime party, angered the NFL allowed her to sing a song they consider anti-police.
The Association told Secrets that when Beyonce performed a snippet of her hit “Formation,” the sheriffs holding their annual legislative meeting at the J.W. Marriott turned off the volume and video.
Dee: Beyoncé has been accused of not caring enough about Black Lives Matter and of being a bad feminist (or not one at all); on “Formation,” she raises two middle fingers to all sides of her Illuminati-truthing haters with a bold intersection of the two fights. She is a black feminist, full stop. This is a video made for women — she speaks directly to “ladies” in the song’s blazing call to action — and it is clear she is done living for the will and want of men (and has been for a minute, actually). She’s “so possessive” of Jay Z’s love and his power that she wears his “Roc necklaces.” (Still, Hov’s got the hottest chick in the game wearing his chain.) She won’t stand by and watch young black women snatch their noses so far that they can no longer take pride in their Jackson 5 nostrils.
This is a new negro spiritual hymn, one that hits me deeper than Kendrick’s “Alright,” because every look, every lyric, every outfit, every moment is a statement of Black Girl Magic. Of course, I’m moved by that fly little black boy in a hoodie who joyfully dances in front of a barricade of white cops in riot gear. But I’m politically inspired when Beyoncé gives the Black Power salute atop a New Orleans cop car. Am I reaching to call this a protest song? I just can’t get “Mississippi Goddam” out of my head when I see it.
Many loved him for it.
Some criticized him for it.
The 2015 league MVP showed his personality again after Sunday night’s 24-10 loss to Denver in Super Bowl 50 with short answers and an abrupt exit from his postgame news conference.
It wasn’t pretty. The player known for his infectious smile and designer attire answered seven questions with a frown and black hoodie pulled over his head.
It’ll get Newton more criticism than love.
But it was raw emotion just like his dabbin’.
Newton hates to lose, and he wears that emotion on his sleeve as boldly as he wore those Versace zebra-print pants on the trip to California.
Continue reading that article and you’ll see that Cam’s labelled as having “childlike behavior”. Now the best I can be is a white ally but that description is not what I’d imagine one should say about a grown black man who even thought he makes that much money basically tossing balls around in a game. With so much shit coming down in the world and this country, you would think that folks could be more upset by the level of child poverty in the country, the poisoning of children in a poor community by a state government, or say sending drone attacks down on a village. But, no, we get all excited about a game and some artistic expression. And, it variably turns into a white denial of institutional racism on parade.
Or, you could be like me and be genuinely upset by assholes running to be the leader of the Free World like the aforementioned Marco Rubio. I really hope the man has a horrid week because THIS. I want his goose cooked until its cinder.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) promised on Sunday that he would sign an abortion ban as president that provided exceptions for rape even though he preferred for pregnant victims to have their rapists’ babies.
Following a Saturday night’s Republican Presidential Debate on ABC News, host George Stephanopoulos noted during a Sunday interview that Rubio had been hammered for his belief that abortion was wrong even in cases of rape or incest.
“Abortion to me is not a political issue,” Rubio insisted. “It’s a human rights issue. And so, if [Jeb Bush] wants to make it a political issue, that’s his right. For me, it’s not.”
“I do require an exception for life of the mother because I’m pro-life,” he continued. “Number two, as I’ve said, if they pass a law in Congress that has exceptions, I’ll sign it. Because I want to save lives.”
“What do you say to that mom when you look her in the eye?” the ABC host wondered.
“It’s a terrible situation,” Rubio replied. “I mean, a crisis pregnancy, especially as a result of something as horrifying as that, I’m not telling you it’s easy. I’m not here saying it’s an easy choice. It’s a horrifying thing that you’ve just described.”
“I get it,” he added. “I really do. And that’s why this issue is so difficult. But I believe a human being, an unborn child has a right to live, irrespective of the circumstances of which they were conceived. And I know that the majority of Americans don’t agree with me on that.”
“And that’s why any law that passed will almost certainly have exceptions. And I’ll sign it.”
Those of you that actually watched the debate with us on Saturday night know that Chris Christie went after Rubio with a relish and Rubio folded like an empty sack of flour. We’ve frequently talked about Rubio’s penchant for sounding like he’s speaking from memorized 3×5 index cards. You know, the kind that they used in high school bates backed in the day. Christie nailed him on it and all Rubio did was repeat the same thing over about 4 times. The polls have taken a turn. Rubio is no longer the flavor of the month and the Twitter and Gifs have not been kind either.
An internal poll conducted on Sunday suggests that Marco Rubio’s fumbled debate performance has damaged his prospects heading into the New Hampshire primary.
The poll, conducted by the pro-John Kasich New Day for America Super PAC, shows Rubio plummeting to fourth place in the primary here, with 10 percent of the vote. Most of the polling conducted in the immediate days before the debate showed Rubio in second place.
The survey, which was based on phone calls to 500 likely voters (margin of error plus or minus 3 percent), was conducted Sunday, the day following the latest Republican debate. Rubio came under scathing attack from Chris Christie, who cast the first term Florida senator as too unready, ambitious, and superficial to occupy the Oval Office.
Donald Trump holds a wide lead in the survey, receiving 35 percent. He more than doubles runner-up Kasich, who has 15 percent. In third is Jeb Bush, with 13 percent. Behind Rubio in fifth and sixth place, respectively, are Christie and Ted Cruz. Both receive 8 percent.
The results are welcome news for Kasich and Bush, both of whom have made New Hampshire the centerpiece of the primary campaigns. Strong performances on Tuesday will give them reason to fight on to the South Carolina primary, which will be held Feb. 20.
So, what’s more important in the scheme of things? A football game, a video, the potential return of another Bush? Oh, and of course, Rubio’s a Republican so it’s the media’s fault for emphasizing that he repeated the same damned thing about Obama 4 times.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a fundraising email Monday that passed off New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) attacks on the freshman senator’s canned talking points as a controversy ginned up by the media.
The email said the media pounced on the Rubio campaign’s “building momentum” by making hay out of the fact that the senator “pointed out a few times” during Saturday’s Republican presidential debate “that President Obama has been very deliberate about achieving his bad policies.”
“This isn’t the first time the media has tried to distract people,” the email read. “We can’t afford to let the media get away with this.”
Rubio had said some variation of the line, “Barack Obama is undertaking an effort to change this country, to make America more like the rest of the world,” four times during the debate. Christie repeatedly attacked Rubio’s repetition on the stage, calling the Obama line the senator’s “memorized 25-second speech.”
In the fundraising email, which didn’t mention Christie, Rubio said he would stick with the language.
Good luck with that.
If I wanted to give you all a headache, I’d start in on how horrible MoDo was this weekend. But, BNR has done it for me so I’ll leave it at that.
Dowd is the leading purveyor of Rovian anti-Hillary memes, sophisticated negative character frames crafted in conservative oppo shops to undermine Hillary’s candidacy. Dowd believes that as a woman, she is immune from claims of sexism, so her Hillary-bashing screeds are bursting at the seams with blatantly sexist language, lies and innuendo.
Her latest column includes the following verbatim phrases:
- Hillary still has not learned the art of seduction on stage
- Overplays her feminist hand
- Feels too competitive with her husband
- Bill could tell her not to shout her way through rallies, adding to her authenticity problem
- Her campaign cries sexism too often
- Hillary huffily said…
- And she’s still not likable enough for the young women who were supposed to carry her forward as a Joan of Arc.
- With Hillary, there are three things [that make her stupid]: sex, money and the need for secrecy.
- Nixonian obsession with secrecy by the woman who was once an idealistic lawyer
- Hillary was there sucking at the teat
- She tried to drag in others to excuse her own ethically lax behavior
Dowd’s hate masquerading as an editorial is nothing new. She’s been doing this for two decades. But she got sloppy this time, slipping in a line accusing America’s first African American president of “using race” to get elected:
Then there’s the pile on the Big Dawg for a few things he said in a speech and what Madeline Albright said in a speech and what Gloria Steinem said in a speech. Yes, BernieBros, the Clintons control the media narrative. You can sure tell it by the nasty ass coverage of all this including the ginning up of your basic catfight.
Nearly defeated in Iowa, trailing in New Hampshire, and worried about everywhere else,Hillary Clinton’s campaign is bringing out the big guns, releasing political kraken Bill Clinton and summoning feminist icons Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright to reclaim young female voters who have flocked to Bernie Sanders.
In a sign that the formerly inevitable nominee is growing anxious, Bill went all-out against Sanders during a speech Sunday in New Hampshire that sparingly mentioned the Vermont senator by name, but implied that he was a hypocrite whose ideals were untethered to reality. “When you’re making a revolution, you can’t be too careful with the facts,” he sniped, according to The New York Times. But Bill didn’t stop there, accusing the Sanders campaign of fomenting the alleged “Bernie Bro” phenomenon, described by Politicoas a group “who harass female Clinton supporters online and accuse them of ‘voting with their vagina’ and call them ‘bitches.’” Condemning what he called “vicious trolling,” Bill said the attacks on his wife are “literally too profane … not to mention sexist.” (Sanders has denounced any sexism among the ranks of his supporters, saying misogyny has no place in his campaign.)
But Bill was not alone in his unusually harsh words for Sanders and his supporters. The Clinton campaign also tapped Steinem and Albright, two prominent, glass-ceiling-shattering women, to join in chastising young female voters for not supporting one of their own. “We can tell our story of how we climbed the ladder, and a lot of you younger women think it’s done,” Albright said Saturday during a Hillary event, according to The New York Times. “It’s not done. There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other!” Steinem, never one to mince words, suggested Friday on Real Time with Bill Maher that young women are supporting Sanders’s campaign because “the boys are with Bernie.” Steinem and Albright both received significant backlash for their comments, with the Times reporting that some young women were insulted by the suggestion that they were “misinformed and stupid” for not voting along gendered lines.
The series of seemingly coordinated moves underscores how much Clinton, who made women’s rights a core mission during her time as secretary of state, has stumbled with female voters. Recent polls suggestthat women under 35 overwhelmingly prefer Sanders by a 20-point margin, citing their disapproval of Clinton’s Wall Street ties and her less progressive positions on economic problems like student debt and a weak job market for entry-level positions. Hillary hasn’t recovered well from these attacks, recently refusing to release transcripts of her speeches to large banks and organizations—for which she received compensation well into the six figures—unless everyone else “who’s ever given a speech to any private group under any circumstances” does so as well.
Since this is getting long, I’m going to let you add the links to the criticism for all that if you want along with your thoughts. Or, we can talk about what kind of challenges we have in this country and who is the best to deal with them.
Meanwhile, did you know there’s a video with a black woman suggesting that the police should stop killing unarmed black people and that a black quarterback with his own kind’ve style upset reporters by leaving a presser early?
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?
Ted Cruz is anxious to move on to New Hampshire.
Although I doubt Teddy Boy would be so “eager” to follow.
As for what is going to happen to Hillary and Bernie?
This is an open thread.
Let the Games Begin!!!
Today are the Iowa Caucuses that will likely make or break a lot of the more iffy candidates hanging on to the slim hope that somebody takes them seriously. Iowa first is a long tradition with some interesting twists. Some of the things that I learned so far in the 2016 silly season include the idea of a “kiddie table” debate and that pundits take Uber and that all those Iowa Uber drivers seem to be the source of anecdotal evidence on voting patterns.
This Iowa Caucus is not the Iowa Caucus of my parents. My father was the Ford Dealer in Council Bluffs, Iowa for over 25 years. They voted in the same elementary school where I practiced “duck and cover” during the Cuban Missile Crisis and saw my second grade teacher Miss Irma Long cry as she announced we’d be sent home because our President, Mr. Kennedy, had been shot in Texas. Most of the candidates of the ilk we have today would’ve been a really odd sight on the stump back then.
I can only imagine what my parents and their friends would say if this crazy looking man from Northern Louisiana showed up looking as he does–which is like someone who’s been lost on an island for years ranting crazily from too much sun–to rally for a candidate. But, the same group of Baptists that harassed one of my father’s clerks for doing laundry on Sunday because they saw the steam coming out of the dryer vent is probably uber excited about Ted Cruz and the duckstasy of religious fever. They want to holy roll all gay marriage supporters off the planet, I guess.
While stumping in Iowa for Ted Cruz on Sunday, “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson declared that gay marriage is a sign of growing “depravity” and “perversion” in America.
Robertson, notorious for his racist and anti-gay remarks, said of marriage equality: “It is evil, it’s wicked, it’s sinful and they want us to swallow it.”
“We have to run this bunch out of Washington D.C.,” Robertson said. “We have to rid the earth of them. Get them out of there.”
Cruz followed Robertson on stage, calling the reality TV star “a joyful, cheerful, unapologetic voice of truth.”
Cruz is in hot water for a number of things. First, there are many they are still not convinced he meets the “natural born” qualification stated in the Constitution and Donald Trump mentions it every chance he can. Additionally, Cruz has used a push piece that has come under criticism by the Iowa Attorney General. The Strump is making a lot out of Cruz’s possibly illegal mailer.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump condemned mailers sent by Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) presidential campaign over the weekend, which implied Iowa voters had violated election law.
The mailer, which uses social pressure to urge potential voters to the polls, “grades” Iowa voters on their voting history — a practice not done by the state.
“I think it’s one of the most disgraceful things I have seen in politics,” Trump told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on Sunday’s “Hardball.” “When you say violation, and then they’re giving you F’s for your voting records and they’re saying immediately come and vote. I think it’s one of the most horrible things that I have seen in politics.”
You can follow the link to TPM to see an example of the mailer. Meanwhile, every time Trump uses music, another musician tells him to cut it out. This time it’s Adele.
The Republican presidential candidate, whose slogan is “Make America great again”, has recently been playing Adele’s hit Rolling In The Deep as his “warm-up” music.
“Adele has not given permission for her music to be used for any political campaigning,” her spokesman confirmed.
It is not the first time Trump has been criticised for appropriating pop songs.
Lawyers for Aerosmith star Steven Tyler sent Trump’s campaign a cease-and-desist letter last year, after the politician played the band’s hit single Dream On at numerous rallies around the US.
The letter said Trump’s use of the song gave “a false impression” he endorsed Mr Trump’s presidential bid.
Trump responded on Twitter, saying he had the legal right to use the song, but had found “a better one to take its place”.
“Steven Tyler got more publicity on his song request than he’s gotten in 10 years. Good for him!” he added.
Blizzard conditions will be heading tonight to my childhood home in Council Bluffs which basically means there will be no fair weather turnout in a good deal of Eastern Iowa. It also means that youngest daughter will be digging out on Tuesday since she’s out there in the Omaha Boonie Suburbs.
My continued fascination with the parallels between Bernie and the Strump has me thinking on how the both of them seemed to have made the Super Pac and the billionaire donor class appear irrelevant. Trump is self-financing his campaign. Sanders has just passed a record for collecting money from small donors. It’s amazing to watch Jeb Bush struggle for attention while swimming in all that money.
With billionaire Donald Trump sitting firmly atop the Republican field, the willingness of big establishment donors to underwrite his competitors’ war chests has fizzled.
About 17 donors gave $1 million or more to groups backing Republican presidential candidates in the last six months of 2015, 60 percent fewer than the number who gave that much in the first half of the year, according to Federal Election Commission filings. And outside groups that can accept unlimited contributions accounted for about 27 percent of Republican fundraising in the second half, down from 78 percent.
Many donors contributed large sums early to create the perception that their candidate was financially viable to go the distance. Now, with the first-in-the-nation caucuses taking place today in Iowa and several other primaries happening in the coming weeks, much of that money isn’t being replenished as candidates enter a grueling and expensive phase of the campaign.
“Part of this is the Trump effect,” said Tony Corrado, a government professor at Colby College. “Some major establishment Republican donors are undoubtedly waiting to see which candidate will emerge as the best alternative to Trump.”
For some, that’s already begun. Marco Rubio, who has emerged as the leading establishment candidate in recent months, won the backing of two major conservative hedge fund donors — Paul Singer and Ken Griffin — each of whom gave $2.5 million in late 2015 to a super-PAC supporting Rubio, Conservative Solutions PAC.
Rubio’s also winning over some big money that previously backed Bush, who, as a frequent target of Trump’s jibes, has struggled to get traction with voters. After raising a record $103 million in the first half of the year, the super-PAC supporting Bush, Right to Rise USA, pulled in only $15 million over the next six months, the bulk of it from one donor.
The former secretary of state brought in over $37 million in the final three months of 2015 and started the year with $38 million in the bank. At the same time, the campaign spent $35 million in those three months. She continues to benefit from millions of dollars raised by her super PACs, including Priorities USA, which said Friday it has raised $50 million through this month. Two other groups supporting Clinton, American Bridge and Correct the Record, brought in an additional $6 million total.
And while Sanders has sworn off super PACs and criticizes Clinton’s largesse, a group run by National Nurses United is backing the Vermont senator regardless and has raised $2.3 million, with about half of that remaining, the group reported.
Clinton’s haul also meant a windfall for the Democratic National Committee and state Democratic parties across the country, who worked with Clinton’s campaign to raise money for the Hillary Victory Fund. In total, Clinton’s campaign raised $18 million for the DNC and state parties.
“We’re heading into the first caucuses and primaries with an organization second to none thanks to the support of hundreds of thousands of people across the country,” said Robby Mook, Clinton’s campaign manager. “We will have the resources necessary to wage a successful campaign in the early states and beyond.”
Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver touted the number of individual contributions — 3.25 million — the campaign has received. “As Secretary Clinton holds high-dollar fundraisers with the nation’s financial elite, our supporters have stepped up in a way that allows Bernie to spend the critical days before the caucuses talking to Iowans about his plans to fix a rigged economy and end a corrupt system of campaign finance,” Weaver said in a statement.
It looks like Hillary and the Strump are the expected winners tonight. Sanders, Cruz and Rubio all appear poised to close with some delegates since Iowa is not a winner take all state.
It would be entirely reasonable to presume that Bernie Sanders has momentum in Iowa. He’s gained on Hillary Clinton in national polls. Hekeeps pulling further ahead of Clinton in New Hampshire. And he’s made substantial gains in Iowa relative to his position late last year. December polls of Iowa showed Sanders behind by an average of 16 percentage points; the race is much closer now.
There’s just one problem: Sanders’s momentum may have stalled right when it counts the most.
The Des Moines Register’s Iowa poll released Saturday, for example, had Clinton leading Sanders by 3 percentage points. That means Iowa is close and winnable for Sanders; polling errors of 5 or even 10 percentage points are not uncommon in the caucuses. But it also means that Sanders hasn’t gained on Clinton. The previous Des Moines Register poll, released earlier in January, showed Clinton up by 2 percentage points instead.
The same story holds for other polling companies that have surveyed Iowa twice in January. A couple of these pollsters — American Research Group and Quinnipiac University — show Sanders leading. But they don’t show him gaining; Sanders also led in the previous edition of the ARG and Quinnipiac surveys.
Clinton and Cruz are relying on a substantive ground game and good commit to caucus plans for GOTV activities. Sanders and Trump are hoping for a large turnout and the ability to overwhelm the caucuses where they do have a base. Cruz appears to be the one Republican with a substantive ground game. Cruz has a natural base with evangelicals that Trump has somewhat eroded. Cruz goes after the right wing religious voters.
It’s little more than 24 hours before the pivotal Iowa caucuses begin, and the presidential campaigns are still going strong. Especially for Ted Cruz, who TIME reporter Alex Altman says digs deep to his religious roots to connect with his conservative voters on the trail.
“Ted, the voice of sanity, in this time of calamity!” a voter exclaims at a campaign stop in a public library in northwest Iowa.
Cruz has been touring several towns in Iowa, and is one of the few candidates who planned to stop in all of the state’s 99 counties.
“This is part of Cruz’s strategy to win it the old fashioned way,” Altman said, “which is to go hand-to-hand in small towns, visit people, and tell them why he wants their vote.”
Iowa is primarily a rural state although there are vast differences between the east and western sections of the state. It is home to several really good universities and to the Amish. There are still plenty of farmers there including the grandfather of my future son-in-law who used to buy his F150s from my dad. Iowa folks are also very fond of their agriculture and ethanol subsidies. It’s going to be interesting to see how they weigh in tonight. I’m seeing lots of pictures and shots from places I recognize that don’t seem to have changed much in my 60 years on the planet. Parts of the state do not have reliable wifi still. There is also a large contingent of immigrants that work the slaughterhouses. It’s a state that looks like Mayberry in many ways. We’ll just have to see.
We will be posting a live blog with the returns later tonight. Caucus doors lock down around 8:30 cst. The weather will be important as will the intensity of the supporters. Who do you think is going to win tonight?