Update: The “ignore Trump” strategy which replaced the “attack Trump” strategy means these two new national polls will be either underplayed or not reported. Reuters/Ipsos #1 Trump at 24.9% followed by Bush at 12. Quinnipiac #1 Trump 20%, Walker 13%, Bush 10%.
Donald J. Trump is running a real HOPE AND CHANGE campaign with unceasing attacks on the political establishment of the country which includes both parties, Big Media, lobbyists, special interests, unions, the Chamber of Commerce, the regulatory bureaucratic state, and all those who encourage or feed upon this gargantuan power structure – which is what makes Trump so difficult to destroy.
Hillary2016 is all giggles at the thought of GOP Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump. This is foolishness. There should be terror at the very thought of even the possibility of Donald J. Trump as the GOP nominee on the part of Hillary2016. Donald J. Trump as the GOP nominee means a revitalized GOP as the party of reform to “Make America Great Again.”
Donald J. Trump as the Republican nominee is no longer a “nah, can’t ever happen” nor a “not likely.” Donald J. Trump as the Republican nominee is more like “yeah, it’s the likely future.”
Consider: In the latest Iowa poll, Trump is shy of the #1 position by 2 measly points. Scott Walker, the governor of the neighboring state of Wisconsin based his campaign on an Iowa win and for a long time Walker has been the clear frontrunner in Iowa well ahead of every other candidate. Walker hoped to springboard from an Iowa win to a New Hampshire win and as the candidate who was seen as everybody’s second choice and the candidate acceptable to all wings of the intra-warring party Walker’s path to victory was clear. Then Walker (and one of his donors as well) attacked Trump and Trump counterattacked. Now Walker has Trump about to trump him in Iowa. If Walker loses Iowa – lights out for Walker2016. Trump then gets the Walker voters or a large percentage.
Consider: In the latest New Hampshire poll, Trump is #1 with double the support of #2 Jeb Bush. If Trump wins Iowa then New Hampshire he can leverage those wins to unify the anti-establishment vote to defeat Lindsey Graham in his home state of South Carolina. These victories would knock out Graham, Pataki, Carson, Christie, and all those who based their strategy on winning New Hampshire. Trump would get the bulk of those voters. Then the fourth state to vote, Nevada, is another state with Trump at #1 so Trump can conceivably win the first four voting states. Then imagine if Trump decides to compete in the winner-take-all Florida primary which up to now is seen as an expensive fight between only Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, with the loser forced to withdraw from the race. From his properties in Florida and his frequent visits to the Sunshine State Trump could run in Florida and finish off both Bush and Rubio with one stroke sending them both into oblivion and therefore – presidential nominee Trump.
Is the above scenario nuts? Can Trump win? For once in his life left wing kook Tommy Christopher has stumbled into reality and issues a stark warning to Hillary2016 and the Republican establishment:
Republican strategists are consoling themselves by alternately insisting that Trump will exit the race when he loses in Iowa (where he’s currently almost in the lead), and that his stands on issues will trip him up once the debates begin. Even with Trump so clearly in the lead, the media have the nerve to fret about a Trump third-party run. The day will come when they’ll be begging Jeb Bush to mount a third-party run against Trump.
What they’re all missing is that Trump is immune to all of the things they think will take him out. [snip]
If you thought Trump relished that opportunity, wait until the primetime debate on Fox News next week. Anyone who thinks that Chris Christie or Rick Perry are going to put a dent in Trump needs to have their head examined. [snip]
The current theory is that as the field narrows, Trump will hit his ceiling, but when your lesser-polling candidates start dropping out, is their support going to go to candidates who can’t stand up to the guy who’s not even supposed to have a chance? Even if they disagree with Trump on the issues, Republican voters aren’t going to vote for a wuss. As long as he continues to get the privilege of busting these guys up in debates, and enjoying non-stop free publicity, Trump will continue to gain support.
Liberals and Democrats, meanwhile, are laughing all the way to the Whole Foods at the prospect of a Trump general election candidacy, but if you accept the possibility of a Trump nomination, then you dismiss his general election chances at your peril. Assuming that Hillary Clinton is the nominee (which she will be), Trump will head into the general election with the same attack-dog skills and media attention that he had in the primaries, but with the additional benefit of a clean slate on the issues. While the Clinton-hating media continues to attack Hillary with stories that don’t actually add up, don’t be surprised to see Trump outflank Hillary by, say, proposing instant citizenship to go along with his Mexican-proof fence. Once he’s got the GOP nod, The Donald can freestyle on the issues like it’s 8 Mile Road up in here.
While Trump is busy collecting Republican voters, who will turn out no matter what in order to defeat Hillary Clinton, Hillary will be turning out the Obama coalition that helped President Obama win twice, but might not be turning out the bitterly defeated Sanders/Warren wing. Then, your election will be decided by the handful of soft-headed “independents” who always decide things, and who are relentlessly being told that they can’t trust Hillary Clinton
Other than that bit about a Trump turnaround on illegal immigration Tommy Christopher surprisingly gets it right. Repeat: Donald J. Trump is running a real HOPE AND CHANGE campaign with unceasing attacks on the political establishment of the country which includes both parties, Big Media, lobbyists, special interests, unions, the Chamber of Commerce, the regulatory bureaucratic state, and all those who encourage or feed upon this gargantuan power structure – which is what makes Trump so difficult to destroy.
And it is imperative that Trump be destroyed well before August 6. Once Trump gets on a debate stage with governors and senators he will halve his biggest problem and be on the way to the scenario we’ve outlined above. What is Donald Trump’s biggest problem? Trump’s biggest problem is that many Americans do not believe he is really running for president, that this is all a big publicity stunt for something and therefore these Americans do not even consider voting for Trump. But once Trump is seen as a real candidate for president that vast ocean of “he’s not really running” skeptics will be a new target of opportunity for The Donald and Trump’s poll numbers will rise ever higher.
That’s why it is so important to destroy Trump now. Some argue that there is no need to “destroy” Trump because Trump will fade away and the “better” candidate will then rise. This is sheer foolishness. In every election cycle candidates come and go, that is true. But the candidates that come and go do not do so out of happenstance and willy-nilly. Herman Cain was a popular candidate until the hammer dropped on him and Cain was destroyed. Rick Perry once had a real chance to win the nomination, then he blundered, did not know how to recover, and Perry’s enemies destroyed him.
When a campaign implodes it is not because “well, it just happens.” Presidential campaigns implode because they are targeted, attacked, destroyed. Bill Clinton’s campaign in 1992 was targeted, attacked, but survived because Bill Clinton had extraordinary political skills and he knew what the attacks would be, prepared for them, and had the resolve to survive. Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign was targeted and attacked but did not survive because Hillary Clinton did not understand that the party establishment had conspired with Barack Obama well before 2007 to take her out. The party establishment could not defeat her at the polls so it simply stole Michigan delegates from her to gift to Obama, negated her big Florida win, shifted the super-delegates controlled by the party to Obama and the rest is disgusting history.
All campaigns are targeted and then attacked. Survival requires a smart counterattack and a strong understanding of strategy and the zeitgeist. Which brings us to why Donald Trump is so difficult to destroy especially when the competition is someone like Ted Cruz.
We like what Ted Cruz says. Ted Cruz is very smart. He’s not very bright, but he is well educated and very book smart. We like that Ted Cruz fights but we wish Ted Cruz would fight smart fights and then come up with an occasional win. But that seems too much for Ted Cruz.
Consider: The Ted Cruz campaign has raised a great deal of money but has been entirely eclipsed by the rise of Donald Trump. So Ted Cruz set about to try to trump Trump. Cruz decided to stage a publicity stunt on the senate floor with a brutal attack on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
We applaud the Ted Cruz attack on Mitch McConnell. We tolerate publicity stunts too – as long as they serve a purpose and succeed. But the Ted Cruz publicity stunt attack against Mitch McConnell was a fail that is entirely the opposite of what makes Trump so successful.
Why was the Ted Cruz attack on Mitch McConnell a publicity stunt and a fail? First of all, the “issues” upon which Cruz attacked were a joke. The House of Representatives was not about to vote on the Senate bill or take up the Senate bill at all. The Senate bill was a Mitch McConnell publicity stunt without meaning which Ted Cruz countered with a publicity stunt of his own. It was a publicity stunt and to deny that is to deny reality. Subsequent to the Ted Cruz attack on Mitch McConnell the House confirmed that there would be no vote on the McConnell publicity stunt.
Worse for Ted Cruz his publicity stunt tactic is not very Trump-like at all, quite the contrary. The Ted Cruz publicity stunt is the opposite of what Trump is up to.
The Ted Cruz publicity stunt was a yelp from within the establishment. It was an intra-establishment fight delivered in one of the centers of establishment power. It is an example of what Americans hate most about Congress. It wasn’t an outsider delivering an attack against an insider. Ted Cruz complained he was lied to about something about something that was a vote about something that something. Hey, Ted Cruz, you are very smart but stop doing an Obama and think you are the smartest person in the room. On this you goofed. Hey, Ted Cruz campaign, go and read about Bob Dole and his “senate-speak” campaign and why it failed.
Donald Trump’s campaign against the establishment will never speak mush about some bill that was stacked on a vote for a bill that was committee-ed and Rules Committee-ed and procedural this and that, Roberts Rules of Order-ed, clotured, whatever. Trump’s campaign is about English and issues. What Cruz managed to do with his attack on Mitch McConnell was prove how insidery Washinton, D.C. and senatery and Bob Dole-ish his campaign is. This was the anti-zeitgeist. If Ted Cruz wanted to try a Trump style attack he should have considered an attack against McConnell and the entire stinking Washington establishment from a different venue preferably holding a pitchfork.
Ted Cruz should put his books aside, forget the dictionary definition of zeitgeist and instead try to feel the zeitgeist and respond to it. Even Big Media is beginning to understand that Donald Trump is more than words, more than a feeling, more than just anger. Trump gets and rides the zeitgeist.
Even the dense Roger Simon at Politico senses that Trump is more than just Trump:
Donald Trump and the high priests of the press
Having decided that Donald Trump is unworthy of his popularity, the grandees of journalism are hard-pressed to explain why he is so popular. [snip]
I think Trump is flawed on many counts. But I don’t think he has “coarsened our political dialogue and cheapened the electoral process.”
I think it was coarse and cheap by the time Trump got here.
Chris Cillizza is still baffled by Trump but knows that Trump is someone/something he does not like:
Mark Cuban summarized Donald Trump’s appeal in just 43 words
Noted Maverick Mark Cuban is a fan of Donald Trump’s presidential candidacy. And, writing on something called Cyber Dust, Cuban succinctly and effectively explained the Trumpian appeal. Here it is:
I don’t care what his actual positions are. I don’t care if he says the wrong thing. He says what’s on his mind. He gives honest answers rather than prepared answers. This is more important than anything any candidate has done in years. [snip]
Where I part company with Cuban is in his insistence that Trump’s candor is “more important than anything any candidate has done in years.” [snip]
My issue with Trump — and Cuban’s analysis of how important Trump is — is that The Donald’s honesty is almost entirely substance-less and pointless. [snip]
Trump has quite clearly stumbled on to something that appeals to a not-insignificant portion of the electorate. But, does he have a second act that goes beyond just, well, saying stuff?
Cillizza can’t be this dumb. Cillizza must know that something other than “saying stuff” is the secret of Donald Trump’s success.
That’s the soundtrack for this election cycle.
Some get it. Some don’t.
GOP Leaders Are Driving Their Base Into The Arms Of Donald Trump
This Politico article also “gets” the GOP component of the Trump phenomenon:
Trump Schools the Republican Establishment
GOP elites are only making The Donald stronger. [snip]
That Trump is mocking and bewildering the reviled GOP hierarchy—who lead a party with plummeting approval ratings among Republicans—fills the GOP electorate with a not-so-secret glee.
And is it really The Donald’s fault that he’s so interesting? Anybody bother to take a look at his main competition in the polls right now?
One candidate, Jeb Bush, comes across as what might have happened to George W. had he decided to become a physics teacher. [snip]
Donald Trump is, well, choose your metaphor: a bull in a China shop, a tempest in a teapot, Leslie Nielsen setting an apartment on fire, Kramer trying to host the Merv Griffin show in his apartment, Cersei handing over Kings Landing to a bunch of religious wackos wearing smelly bathrobes and branding weird symbols on their heads. Trump is offensive, impulsive, unmanageable, unpredictable and—he is, by the way, exactly the candidate the DC establishment deserves.
To many voters, rightly or wrongly, Trump is the antidote to years of Washington’s cynical, manufactured outrages, the petty punishments of those who deviated from the party line, its broken promises, meaningless “show votes,” careful, poll-tested politician speak and a multitude of backroom deals that have solved exactly zero of our nation’s problems. How deliciously humiliating it must be for the political pros of DC. [snip]
Unlike the DC crowd, Trump knows something about building “brands”—and for now at least he has one that sells. The business guy who can’t be bought. The iconoclast who won’t be controlled. The unrepentant loudmouth who will tell the Boehners and Pelosis and Putins and Kim Jong Uns of the world to stuff it. The quip machine—or insult generator if you prefer—who stands in sharp contrast to the dry, safe, meaningless drivel that passes for most political discourse today.
Intentionally or not, Trump also lets people in on the little DC secrets that those inside the Beltway wouldn’t dare share with regular America. He’s exposed, for example, the fact that office seekers like Rick Perry sucked up to him for millions before he started attacking him. Or that politicians like Lindsey Graham have turned to him for help to get on various TV programs. Or pointing out that the wife of a well-respected political pundit on Fox News works for rival Scott Walker.
Because he is defiantly not a part of the political class, he is impervious to conventional political weaponry. In fact, the attitude of the DC class toward his candidacy—temper tantrums and bouts of monumental arrogance—is only making him stronger. [snip]
The fault for the Trump phenomenon lies not only with the GOP, however. In a first for a news organization, the Huffington Post announced that it was unilaterally relegating a legitimate frontrunner for a major political party’s nomination to the entertainment pages. This was the perfect manifestation of the arrogance and elitism Americans despise. [snip]
Thanks to this sort of clumsy incompetence, Trump has been handed every Republican candidate’s dream: the chance to run against both the GOP leadership and the mainstream media.
Trump thus far has been an ideal candidate to take on the political establishment in all its myriad corruptions. Can anyone else do a Trump?
Some think Bernie Sanders is the socialist version of Trump. But Saint Bernard is a high priest of the political establishment. Like Ted Cruz, Saint Bernard is a United States Senator. You can’t shout “whore!” from the bedroom in a whorehouse.
That’s not to say Saint Bernard can’t hurt Hillary. Hillary hater Mark Halperin chortles as he lists the damage Saint Bernard can inflict on Hillary2016:
Hillary Clinton’s Bernie Sanders Problem Is Bigger Than Anyone Realizes
Seven ways in which the septuagenarian socialist from Vermont actually presents a mortal threat to the Democratic front-runner. [snip]
1. Pulling her to the left [snip]
In recent months, Clinton’s political and rhetorical message has boiled down to an Old-Democrat, big-government, Pelosi-Reid-AFL-CIO-pleasing stew that a skillful Republican nominee could exploit, shoving Clinton out of the vital political middle in the general election.
2. Exposing her biggest weaknesses
If Clinton’s main four-point agenda sounds like it is the product of extensive research by her polling and focus-group teams, well, that is because it is. A lot of voters grasp that calculation intuitively, and find it a turnoff.
3. Forcing her to go negative
First, as Sanders himself has eschewed negative politics throughout his career, potent political martyrdom could ensue. Second, Clinton could look like a hypocrite, since she has been regularly railing against negative attacks from the GOP. Third, it could unleash even more vigorous Republican assaults, with far less concern about public or media backlash.
4. Playing a losing expectations game [snip]
She has to finish far enough ahead of Sanders to prevent the press from treating a win like a loss. [snip]
5. Beating her in early states [snip]
6. Forcing her to invest in caucus states [snip]
Once again, this dynamic means Clinton has to continue to take left-wing positions and to devote precious resources to targeting small numbers of activists, rather than building a general-election machine.
7. Forcing her into an extended nomination fight
Saint Bernard of the Green Mountains will not win the nomination from Hillary. There are structural reasons for this involving Super Tuesday and the fact that Saint Bernard cannot self-finance a campaign even if by chance he would win Iowa and New Hampshire.
But Saint Bernard could be a rescue dog bringing a cask of political liquor to Joe Biden. Already there are desperate calls for Uncle Joe to drink from Saint Bernard’s cask of brandy and run for president. Before it happens let’s call it a “fail.” That’s what it is.
Has Uncle Joe Biden ever had success running for president? Every time Uncle Joe has run for president it has been a joke. Candidate Biden 2016 is a fail even before it happens and fails.
Which somewhat explains Barack Obama’s buffoonery in Africa. Barack Obama does not want Hillary to succeed him. President Hillary would mean Obama is only a brief interlude in the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton drama. But Barack has a problem if it is not Hillary.
Barack Obama does not want Donald Trump of the birth certificate and college application requests to get into the Oval Office. Barack can only shudder at the investigations he will have to testify in if Trump is president. Barack also does not want Trump to show what real HOPE AND CHANGE look like. Barack does not want Trump to be the reformer President who really does reform the GOP and breaks the back of the corrupt political establishment that has promoted slime like Barack.
So what does Obama do? Barack knows Trump is resonating with the voters. So from Africa he attacks Trump. Barack knows Elizabeth Warren cannot win against Trump. Barack knows Uncle Joe cannot win against Trump. Barack knows Saint Bernard cannot win against Trump. Barack knows the Obama cult will not vote for Hillary even as she begs and cowers before it. And from Africa Barack declares he could win a third term if he could run.
What goes on? Is Barack’s declaration of an Obama running in 2016 and winning a hint to muscular Michelle? Or is it just egotistical braggadocio to mock the faltering Hillary2016 and the hated Hillary?
Hillary2016 better wake up to the dangers it faces. The Obama cult won’t vote for Hillary. There are knives behind tapestries. The country wants real HOPE and real CHANGE. Donald Trump is the candidate of an annihilating change.
Hillary2016 better change.