It’s leap of faith day. Look out your political window anywhere in the United States today and you can see the massive cloud formations approach. Tomorrow, you will hear the crackle of lightning rending the heavens and the boom of thunder. SuperTuesday eve is here.
What’s going to happen? Hillary Clinton will score super big victories and Bernie Sanders will book at least one victory in his home state. Bernie Sanders never had a chance and we don’t believe Hillary will be the nominee either, not while Barack Obama has an alternative plan. Of course, if Sanders would quit tomorrow that would put the Obama plans in jeopardy. But Sanders will stay in the race, until the convention, when Barack Obama will take control.
As to the GOP, we can only quote that summer season musical band, The Beach Boys: “Fun, Fun, Fun.” It’s still Summer of Trump.
Before the storm breaks and it is back to the beach time on the political trail we must look at the astonishing news from today and the past weekend. Remember that Donald Trump “ceiling”, remember those “conservative” attacks against Trump, remember the “you can’t insult your way to the White House” critique?
Yesterday, in a massive rally in Alabama, the conservative godfather in the senate endorsed Donald J. Trump. The Sessions endorsement of Trump finishes off whatever claim Ted Cruz had against Trump.
Ted Cruz, and even Marco Rubio needed, had to win, South Carolina. The GOP establishment, the political establishment had to see Trump lose in South Carolina. Instead Trump won South Carolina then Nevada. After Nevada where Trump broke the 40% ceiling, the GOP establishment realized it had to go to war against Trump.
Now there are all sorts of rumors and facts frantically outracing each other. The New York Times published an article detailing the successful effort Marco Rubio made side by side with Chuck Schumer to get Fox News to support the Rubio/Schumer illegal immigration amnesty plan.
The New York Times also published an article this weekend which indicates Mitt Romney will try to enter the race in California or somewhere along with other half-baked plots:
Inside the Republican Party’s Desperate Mission to Stop Donald Trump [snip]
In public, there were calls for the party to unite behind a single candidate. In dozens of interviews, elected officials, political strategists and donors described a frantic, last-ditch campaign to block Mr. Trump — and the agonizing reasons that many of them have become convinced it will fail. Behind the scenes, a desperate mission to save the party sputtered and stalled at every turn. [snip]
At least two campaigns have drafted plans to overtake Mr. Trump in a brokered convention, and the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, has laid out a plan that would have lawmakers break with Mr. Trump explicitly in a general election.
Despite all the forces arrayed against Mr. Trump, the interviews show, the party has been gripped by a nearly incapacitating leadership vacuum and a paralytic sense of indecision and despair, as he has won smashing victories in South Carolina and Nevada. [snip]
Late last fall, the strategists Alex Castellanos and Gail Gitcho, both presidential campaign veterans, reached out to dozens of the party’s leading donors, including the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and the hedge-fund manager Paul Singer, with a plan to create a “super PAC” that would take down Mr. Trump. In a confidential memo, the strategists laid out the mission of a group they called “ProtectUS.” [snip]
Two of Mr. Trump’s opponents have openly acknowledged that they may have to wrest the Republican nomination from him in a deadlocked convention. [snip]
“There’s this desire, verging on panic, to consolidate the field,” said Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a former supporter of Mr. Bush. “But I don’t see any movement at all.” [snip]
Mr. Romney had been eager to tilt the race, and even called Mr. Christie after he ended his campaign to vent about Mr. Trump and say he must be stopped. On the night of the primary, Mr. Romney was close to endorsing Mr. Rubio himself, people familiar with his deliberations said.
Yet Mr. Romney pulled back, instead telling advisers that he would take on Mr. Trump directly. [snip]
Mr. Romney is expected to withhold his support before the voting this week on the so-called Super Tuesday, but some of his allies have urged him to endorse Mr. Rubio before Michigan and Idaho vote March 8. Mr. Romney grew up in Michigan, and many Idahoans are fellow Mormons.
You know you’re digging your own burial plot when you depend on Mitt Romney to successfully implement your political plots. As we wrote before the debate, Romney and Rubio, along with “consistent conservative” Cruz, assailed Trump at that debate in a concerted, coordinated attack.
At the debate many Stop Trump loons believed Donald J. Trump had been mortally wounded. The personal and business history attacks against Trump, the Stop Trumpers believed, hurt Trump and had to be continued. To that end, Marco Rubio began a comedy tour with spicy attacks of a personal and business nature against Trump. Big Media howled with laughter and many said Trump could not survive the ridicule. Ted Cruz disappeared and that undermined the strategy to Stop Trump, but the stupid Stop Trumpers could not help but laugh and enjoy themselves as they tried to insult their way to the White House.
For Ted Cruz the news has been dire as his campaign implodes and he increasingly disappears all the while pinning all his hopes on a home state win. Meanwhile, Cruz supporters are turning to Trump:
Ted Cruz’s man in the U.S. territories has decided to support Donald Trump, he told POLITICO on Sunday.
Dennis Lennox, a Michigan-based GOP operative who spent several weeks organizing the U.S. territories for Cruz, including Guam, American Samoa and the Northern Mariana Islands, said he is supporting Trump because he sees him as more electable.
“I respect Sen. Cruz immensely, I just believe at this point, Mr. Trump is better-positioned, because of his stance on trade, to put Democrats on the defensive in states like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, and ensure that Republicans win again,” he said.
Those remarks come as Cruz and the rest of the GOP field grapple with a front-runner who appears to be putting potentially insurmountable distance between himself and his rivals. Earlier Sunday, Trump notched the support of Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, whom Cruz had counted as an ally.
Today, little Marco Rubio, said he was off his comedy tour because the issues facing the country are too serious. Seriously, little Marco? Why is Rubio off the comedy tour? What news has slammed Rubio off his high heels? A poll.
On the Republican side, the new survey finds Trump’s lead is dominant, and his support tops that of his four remaining opponents combined. The businessman tops his nearest competitor by more than 30 points: 49% back Trump, 16% Marco Rubio, 15% Ted Cruz, 10% Ben Carson and 6% John Kasich.
Trump’s supporters are incredibly enthusiastic about the coming election, and largely committed in their support for him. Nearly 8 in 10 say that they are more enthusiastic about voting this year than in previous elections, among Republicans who are not supporting Trump, just 39% say they are more enthusiastic than in years past. Likewise, 78% of Trump’s backers say they will definitely support him vs. 22% who say they could still change their minds. Among those backing other candidates, 57% say they are committed to their chosen candidate.
Yeah, you read that right: Donald Trump now has more support than all his Republican rivals combined, says new poll.
In New York, rumors are flying via a credible source:
Hillary could lose to Trump in Democratic New York
The poll results, from Democratic and Republican legislative races, have surprised many leading Dems, virtually all of whom have endorsed Clinton, while confounding and energizing GOP leaders, many of whom until recently have been opposed to Trump.
“There are some Democrats who think that Hillary can be taken if Trump mounts a strong campaign,’’ one of the state’s most prominent Democrats said.
Most of the polling didn’t address the possibility that former Mayor Michael Bloomberg would run as an independent, but some of it did — and found the former mayor took “significant’’ votes away from Clinton in heavily Democratic New York City and the surrounding suburbs, a source familiar with the data said.
The new polls, a second source said, showed Trump’s support, even without Bloomberg in the race, was “surprisingly strong’’ in Westchester and on Long Island, the key suburbs often viewed as crucial swing bellwethers on how statewide elections will turn out.
Can Trump win New York? That’s a question for another day but it certainly undermines the “Stop Trump” losers. What matters now is SuperTuesday. So what is going to happen on SuperTuesday? Ronald Brownstein who has derided Trump from the moment he announced, has an idea:
Trump Is Winning a Two-Front War
His strength in states that represent different elements of the GOP coalition shows his uniqueness as a candidate—and the challenge he presents for his rivals. [snip]
On one side, Trump could deal a crushing blow to Cruz, the Texas senator, across a series of Southern and Border States, from Alabama and Arkansas to Tennessee and Oklahoma, that are dominated by evangelical and blue-collar voters.
On the other front, polls show Trump leading in mostly white-collar, far less evangelical states including Vermont, Massachusetts, and Virginia that should be crucial building blocks for Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Ohio Governor John Kasich, the candidates relying most on mainstream conservative voters.
Trump’s strength in states that represent such divergent poles of the GOP coalition testifies to his unique assets as a candidate—and the challenge he presents for his rivals. If Trump can beat Cruz next week in heavily blue-collar and evangelical states on one side, and top Kasich and Rubio in white collar, less culturally conservative states on the other, it will grow increasingly daunting for any candidate to coalesce a coalition large enough to stop the front-runner. That prospect may help explain the urgency with which Rubio and Cruz assailed Trump at Thursday night’s debate.
It’s almost impossible to win a two front war. But that is exactly what Donald Trump is doing. It’s like a massive snowstorm on a ninety degree summer day:
“In Trump you’ve got a candidate who appears to be able to take on Cruz among Cruz’ strength voters, who are evangelicals and also to take on Kasich and Marco among more mainstream voters,” says Neil Newhouse, the chief pollster in 2012 for Mitt Romney. “That is going to make him tough to beat.”
John Brabender, the chief strategist for Rick Santorum’s campaign in 2012, adds:
“It speaks to the complexity of Donald Trump. I saw a poll out today, which had him leading in Texas, one leading in Florida, and one leading in Massachusetts. There’s an absurdity in that. You should not have a presidential candidate leading in all three of those states because the voting universes are so different.”
It’s leap of faith day. On the storm-cloud-on-the-horizon-filled last day of February, it’s still Summer of Trump. On March 1, surf’s up.