Saturday, February 27, 2016

Post-Debate Thoughts

By Kit

Confession: I did not watch the debate. Instead, stressed out over the election, I went to a showing at my college of this German film:


In case the lack of subtitles didn't help you (which was probably likely), the movie is set in 1988 and is about two teenage East German sisters who, while at a "Pioneer's camp" in Hungary training for their Kayaking team, meet up and one of the girls falls in love with one of the boys. It was a nice movie. But I won't go into more detail because I plan to do a review of it.

The Debate, and what it Means

Rubio didn't have a good night, he had a great night. But, I know what you will say, so let's go through them: (1) Nothing has worked before, (2) Trump has a lead, (3) he is like Teflon, nothing hurts him.

I heard all of this before, in the week leading up to Iowa. Everyone said the National Review article would have no impact, many said Trump was guaranteed a win with high turnout. And what happened? He lost. After a week of a sustained onslaught he lost to Ted Cruz.

Yes, he won in NH, SC, and NV. But that was because the opposition stumbled. Ted Cruz had to skip NH while Rubio fumbled the state (and admitted it). In SC and NV the non-Trump candidates continued sniping at each other, leaving Trump largely free to win, as he did.

But now he is facing an onslaught again. And he has no idea what is coming. the pro-Rubio SuperPac, Conservative Solutions, according to Politico "has already purchased or reserved $6.4 million worth of ads" in the week prior to Super Tuesday. And that is just one SuperPac. How will he handle this? How will his numbers?

It is also worth remembering he lost in Iowa largely because the fierce anti-Trump campaign in Iowa galvanized the anti-Trump vote. Yes, it does indeed exist. Iowa proved it and the other states (save, maybe, Nevada*). If pro-Trump sentiment was the sole thing driving turnout, he would likely continually earned more than 50% of the vote. Well more.

But he didn't. He has grabbed considerably less. As proof of the anti-Trump sentiment, I offer up the fact that in South Carolina, more people voted against Trump than voted in the state's 2012 primary as a whole.

So, what now? Christie has endorsed him in an effort to shift the news cycle so Rubio and Cruz will have to stay on the offensive. As Ian Tuttle said, those two "must treat this as the Hunger Games." They may not be able to win many states, save Minnesota and Texas (maybe) but they may be able to close the vote. As New York Times's Nate Cohn recently pointed out, Rubio can win the election without winning a single state in Super Tuesday.

*Which was beset with complaints of irregularities and problems.

62 comments:

Anthony said...

Like I said before, everything is coming up Hillary. She needs idiotic opponents so that despite the fact she is uncharismatic and untrustworthy, she is the least bad option and the Republican party is dutifully serving them up and not just in the form of Trump.

A pro-lifer claimed fathers can have sex with their daughters and if its unwanted they won't get pregnant. As evidence he pointed to his experience with his own five daughters! WTF! Is this guy running buddies with Josh Duggar?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/pete-nielsen-rape-pregnancy_us_56d0ccbae4b0bf0dab32325f

Idaho state Rep. Pete Nielsen (R) claimed women who are victims of rape or incest are less likely to get pregnant than if they had consensual sex, echoing infamous remarks by 2012 U.S. Senate candidate Todd Akin (R-Mo.).

Nielsen made the assertion, which contradicts scientific evidence, during a state House committee hearing on a bill that would require abortion providers to tell women where they can get a free ultrasound test. Abortion-rights advocates criticize the legislation as a way of deterring abortions, and point out that many of the facilities providing free ultrasounds are crisis pregnancy centers that often counsel women against getting an abortion.
-------------
"That’s information that I’ve had through the years. Whether it’s totally accurate or not, I don’t know," he said. "I read a lot of information. I have read it several times. … Being a father of five girls, I’ve explored this a lot."

tryanmax said...

Anthony, a few thoughts:

1. Trump is cycling the news too fast for that story to land on the GOP. In fact, he has the effect of channeling all the worst GOP stereotypes away from the career politicians.

2. Every headline is going to invoke Todd Akin which gives it the "this again" feel. Akin was used to shock people, but shock value has limited repeat value.

3. People know more now. And what they mainly know is that there is a lot of uncertainty. Not everybody, but curious people have now looked into this. They'll have found that Akin and Neilsen's info, whether wrong or not, is far from the fringey, archaic stuff it was made out to be. Even today I can easily find legit-looking sites online that offer the info Neilsen is referencing.

Not that my take matters, but as far as I can see, the science here is far less settled than it is on climate change. There are scant, largely disconnected facts which experts are extrapolating into conclusions that cannot honestly be reached. If the disputed claims were being made by Democrats, there is an alternate army of experts in the wings ready to go on the news with the opposite conclusion.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony and tryanmax, I'm going to split the difference because I am a peacemaker... like Kanye. ;-)

I think tryanmax is right that none of this matters at the moment because the only story is Trump. Trump is the new equivalent of a nuclear war. Nothing else gets air time.

On the other hand, Anthony is right that this does have an effect. It adds fuel to the ever-burning reputational fire that keeps women away from the GOP because it continues the stereotype of the Religious Right as a bunch of sicko cultists.

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, I am in the camp that believes you can't hurt Trump with conventional political weapons, and that is the kind of war Rubio and the rest are fighting. The math is simple. Rubio thinks this:

(1) The public wants someone they can trust.
(2) Trust is built through having a squeaky clean reputation combined with a track record of success.
(3) If I can smear Trump so his reputation suffers, then his support will fade.

But this Boy Scout view of the world is wrong... always had been. The real formula is this:

(1) The public likes the guy they think has their back.
(2) They don't care if he's a total bastard, so long as they think he can deliver.

Trump gets this. He is seen as someone who can deliver. He is seen as someone who has the public's back against a system that has been brutally mocking them for decades and stealing their jobs and money. He is their tool for revenge.

As a tool of revenge, the more you try to smear him as a guy who roughs up little old women, the more faith the public has in his ability to deliver. After all, when you hire a hitman, you don't want one who weeps about hurting people, do you?

Hence, you can't touch him with normal political attacks. All you do is make him stronger. If you want to beat Trump, you need to (1) undermine him as part of the establishment or (2) make him look a lot less competent at delivering the good.

You also need to offer something similar, but better to what he is offering.

Kit said...

Andrew,

If you are right, then the republic is doomed.

AllenaSelina said...

Andrew, that is a good strategy to defeat Trump. He is more establishment than most of the candidates running, and is a true RINO. And he sure as hell is not a conservative. I hope the other candidates wise up. I really can't say who would be worse: Trump or Clinton.

tryanmax said...

Andrew, to piggy back your analogy, yes it's fuel to the fire, but all the Democrats can do is keep it burning, they can't stoke the flames any higher. The gender gap has been relatively constant since it tipped in the Dems' favor in 1980. A lot of effort goes into gathering gaffes as kindling just to keep it from dying down. I agree that Republicans should not supply kindling, but the Dems will mine quotes from dog catchers if it comes down to it.

Kit said...

I think Rubio's attack has worked in two ways, (1) hurting Trump's image as the guy who can bulldoze anyone on stage* and (2) raising Rubio up as the guy who can and will effectively stand up Trump. Rubio's hope is that this will galvanize support for him among those who don't like Trump but were looking at Kasich or Carson or Cruz or thinking about not voting.

*To be fair, the only guy challenging him really was Jeb Bush, who came across as George McFly before he got the boost of confidence.

AllenaSelina said...

A big hello to everyone at Commenterama! It's been quite some time since I commented here or anywhere for that matter. I have been very busy but it looks like I will be able to spend more time reading one of my favorite blogs and commenting.
I'm a bit different than the last time you all saw me, but that's a good thing. 😊
You may remember me as USS Ben.
I hope everyone is doing well.

Kit said...

This article hits upon Rubio's likely strategy: LINK

Kit said...

Oh, and Rubio is expected to draw a crowd of 7,000 in Georgia.

Kit said...

AllenaSelina,

Glad you are back.

AllenaSelina said...

Thanks Kit! It's good to be back. That is an interesting strategy you linked to. I hope Rubio can pull it off.

Kit said...

"That is an interesting strategy you linked to. I hope Rubio can pull it off."

Me too.

AllenaSelina said...

I would really like to see Kasich win, because of his experience but Rubio is my second choice and he probably has a better chance as far as viable candidates go.

Kit said...

What state are you in?

AllenaSelina said...

Washington.

Kit said...

Alabama, here. Voting Super Tuesday.

Kit said...

Listening to CNN, Nate Silver summed up the coverage well:
"Trump praised Vladimir Putin, retweeted a white supremacist, and implied President Obama is a Muslim. Has Rubio gone too far?"

Rubio could hold a fund-raiser where he hosts a mud-wrestling contest with porn stars and still not go as far and as low as Donald Trump has in this campaign.

AllenaSelina said...

"Rubio could hold a fund-raiser where he hosts a mud-wrestling contest with porn stars and still not go as far and as low as Donald Trump has in this campaign."

Ha ha! That's true!

AndrewPrice said...

Welcome back, Allena. I was always happy to hear your take on events, and your sense of humor.

On Trump, I hope they get it, because just doing the usual attacks will not work. They only make him seem like a bigger threat to the status quo and that feeds his supporters.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, That's true. That's the problem once you get a reputation, it's easy for people to renew it.

AllenaSelina said...

Thanks Andrew! I missed our discussions a lot. I'm glad I finally have more time to read and comment. I also have a new love interest, which I never thought would happen, so despite the political problems we are facing life has been very good, and I'm very encouraged by the young women and men I have met that liberals and conservatives alike have alienated so much. 😎
I think you're right, there's still plenty of hope for America and for Liberty.

BevfromNYC said...

Hey Allena! Welcome back, just in the nick of time too! As long as we stick together, America and Liberty will never die!

AllenaSelina said...

Thank you for that kind welcome, Bev! I am so glad to see you and everyone here. We'll save the republic yet. :)

Joel Farnham said...

Kit,

You should have watched it. Not necessarily to the end, I didn't, but it was incredible. There was a high pitched girl close enough to the mikes to be heard. She mostly squealed when her man Rubio said something.

It mostly was a Cruz/Rubio who-can-beat-up-on-Trump the most debate. Rubio won that portion of the event. That was interesting to say the least. Wolf Blitzer lost control of the debate or maybe he didn't. At any rate, the pundits the next day declared Rubio the winner by knockout. However, the online polls begged to differ.

Then Trump sucks all the air out of the room again with a Rino establishment endorsement of YUGE proportions. Yep, that Obama hugging, Krispie Creme eating, teacher stare-down artist aka Chris Christie. This kinda scares the GOPe.

There is even talk that Christie was all along a Trumpster, just faking it until it was time. It would explain Christie's take down of Rubiot in the prior debate.

Here is my take on it. Cruz must win Texas decisively. I mean 50% + 1 vote. If Cruz doesn't win pressure will be overwhelming for Cruz to drop out. If Cruz drops out, it is a two man race at that point and Rubio can't handle Trump on his own.

Kit said...

Hey, any comments on that German film I mentioned?

Kit said...

Allena,

Quoth John Cleese: "It's not the despair, I can stand despair. It's the hope!"

AndrewPrice said...

OT Thought: The first person we send to Mars HAS to be named "Marvin."

Kit said...

Andrew,

Fascinating thought.

Kit said...

Where did it come from?

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, I have no idea. It just came to me kind of randomly.

AndrewPrice said...

On the German film, I haven't seen it. I have seen others that I like however. I like Run Lola Run and Stalingrad. Das Boot is amazing. After that, the pickings get slim.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, Never mock Krisy Kreme!

Kit said...

I have long desired to see Das Boot. It does have a great theme. LINK

I've seen Downfall, which is probably one of the greatest movies ever made, certainly one of the best war movies ever made, and I've seen half of Lives of Others, which William F. Buckley thought the best movie he'd ever seen.

AndrewPrice said...

Oh, forgot about that one. I did see Lives of Others and I thought it was very good. Das Boot is amazing. If you want to feel what it was like for these men, this film give you that in an engrossing way. Super-well acted, great direction, great writing.

Rustbelt said...

Andrew, why Marvin? Doesn't the Red Planet kind of doom all Marvins to go mad with power? Why not another name?

AndrewPrice said...

Rustbelt, Sometimes in the course of human affairs you just gotta do what you gotta do. I would do this if I were NASA:

Wanted: Marvin for extended travel. Must be willing to die in space, alone and afraid. Lack of knowledge of the dangers of space travel a plus.

Rustbelt said...

Andrew, I would add:

"Being prone to immense bouts of depression not a problem. Ability to operate extraterrestrial carparks a plus!"

Still, there ARE other names!

AllenaSelina said...

Kit, lol! I love John Cleese!
That film looks interesting, even though I know very little German.

Andrew, knowledge of the elunium pu36 explosive space modulator is a plus!

Anthony said...

Tryanmax and Andrew,

Right now we are in the middle of the primaries and the focus of Republicans and Democrats is inward, so the latest idiot in and of itself is not a big deal. One local idiot isn't a big deal. Both parties have lots of idiots.

However, he indicates that the fringe hasn't learned. Couple that with the fact that the election is a long way off, there is little doubt that similar idiotic pronouncements will be made before the general.

To be fair, as I said before I think the Republicans' biggest problem in 2012 was Romney crapping on the bottom half of America (many of whom vote Republican) to his fat cat buddies behind closed doors, a mistake Trump is unlikely to make. Of course, woman are half of whites (or somewhere thereabouts) so Trump will still likely depress turnout in some fashion.

Anthony said...

As expected, Hillary's (black) Southern firewall has held, though the nature of her South Carolina victory indicates her problems generating enthusiasm among white voters (especially the young) continue.

She is still an utterly terrible candidate who only hope for victory is stupidity on the Republican side. Cementing his title of 'Hillary's Hope' Trump has floated running as a third party candidate if he doesn't win the nomination.

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/hillary-clinton-projected-winner-south-carolina-democratic-primary/story?id=37221315

Clinton received a big boost from black voters who accounted for 62 percent of South Carolina Democratic primary voters in exit poll results, breaking the state’s record of 55 percent in 2008. Clinton won 84 percent of their votes, a crushing score.

Anthony said...

On the lighter side of the news Melissa Harris Perry has compared herself to a slave because her low rated show was preempted twice and has parted ways with MSNBC. Finding someone with her journalistic chops will take minutes of searching, maybe even five of them.

BevfromNYC said...

Just thought I would share a slice of Sunday in NYC....I saw old man walking his box turtle down the sidewalk. 8-D

Anthony said...

Trump is fine with the KKK endorsement. This keeps getting better.

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/trump-repeatedly-refuses-to-disavow-endorsement-from-ex-kkk-leader-on-cnn/

AllenaSelina said...

Hi Anthony, I bet this won't bother Trump's acolytes one bit. Trump is a cult leader and he and his followers are doing serious damage to conservatism.
But then again, Trump isn't conservative he's a snake oil salesman.

AllenaSelina said...

Bev, did he have a turtle pooper scooper? :)

BevfromNYC said...

He quotes Mussolini, praises Putin, and accepts an endorsement from David Duke. All he needs to do now is shake hands with Neo-Nazi and the set is complete. And the Trumpsters will still vote for him. I think Christie is going back to New Jersey to figure out how he can unendorse Trump.

BevfromNYC said...

Allena, it wouldn't surprise me...LOL!

Kit said...

Trump "disavows" Klan (after a few hours of getting hell for it.

Sessions endorses Trump.

Kit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kit said...

If any tries to defend Trump over his KKK gaffe:

Jake Tapper asked Trump three times if he would disavow David Duke, even bringing up Duke's affiliation w/ the Ku Klux Klan. Trump refused, saying "I don't know who they are."

Everyone over the age of 15 (and a vast majority over age 12) knows who the Klan are. Trump was either lying or is officially too stupid to do hold a job with more difficulty than telling every person he sees, "Welcome to Costco, I love you."

Trump's replies rank to Jake Tapper's queries about the Klan's support for him as the most embarrassing responses to an easy question I've seen since Jerry Sandusky was asked by Bob Costas if he had ever had sex with children —and dodged.

Do you like to have sex with children? F**k no!

What is your opinion of the Ku Klux Klan? Hate the a**-holes!

Kit said...

"Finding someone with her journalistic chops will take minutes of searching, maybe even five of them."

But who will attack Star Wars as racist because of Darth Vader!

Joel Farnham said...

Hate to break it to you guys, but Trump disavowed Duke and KKK on Friday. Why does he have to disavow it again and again and again? Isn't once enough? It sounds like the Operation Goldwater playbook is being used. It also smells of desperation.

Kit said...

Allena,

"That film looks interesting, even though I know very little German."

When I saw it, it was subtitled. When I write the review I will try to link to where it is available.

(Note: If I ever address you as "Allen", blame the spell-check.)

Kit said...

Joel,

Read my comment re Trump & the Klan.

Joel Farnham said...

Trump disavowed David Duke's KKK endorsement prior to Jake Tapper asking him. He did the rebuke in front of thousands of people and in front of many cameras. You should remind Tapper that he should use Google. Also, later in that same day a protester was kicked out of Trump's. On the protester's shirt it was written, KKK backs Donald Trump.

Look up the Barry Goldwater campaign and count how many times he was asked the same question.

I fully expect Megyn Kelley to ask Trump that question on Thursday.

Ask yourself something, why is Jake Tapper asking this same stupid question?

Also, how many times should Trump be asked this question? By the Media? Every day? Will that change your vote?

This is a liberal tactic. Nothing more, nothing less. BTW isn't the KKK a Democrat organization?

BevfromNYC said...

More importantly, anyone who is over 30 including Trump should know who David Duke is and who he represents. He has been in Louisiana politics for decades, ran for President and Senate numerous times.

AllenaSelina said...

Trump knows full well who David Duke is, long before Jake Tapper told him:
http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/432047/donald-trump-and-kkk-does-he-deny-it
So Trump is lying and he is an idiot for not immediately condemning Duke, the KKK and white supremacists.

Kit, not a problem. Spell check is notorious for stuff like that. :)

Kit said...

Joel,

Then Trump lied to Jake Tapper (and the country) when he said he had no idea who David Duke was.

Kit said...

Trump's entire basis for whether someone is good or bad is "do they like Donald Trump." At least Hillary requires you to fork over some cash.

Flattery is the cheapest form of bribery and those who need it like Trump does are the easiest to bribe (see, Putin).

Joel Farnham said...

Kit,

Yep

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