Wednesday, November 08, 2017

More Vulnerable To False Claims


Monday, Bill Clinton spoke at Georgetown University to mark the 25th anniversary of his election. He brought up his wife's failed election by noting that "in the counties that Hillary carried, you find 64 percent of America's GDP. In the more numerous, rural counties carried by President Trump, you find 36 percent of the GDP, even though the median income of a Trump voter was higher. What does that tell you? Even poor people are more hopeful if they're in a dynamic place. Being trapped with a lack of mobility is more damaging emotionally and makes you more vulnerable to false claims, from my point of view, than if you're poor."

The following day NBC and the Wall Street Journal released a poll of people living in key Trump counties, those same people who proved to be so tragically vulnerable to false claims. The 438 counties in in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin-- which Trump won 57-37%-- either flipped from voting Obama in 2012 to Trump last year or saw a significant surge for Trump. A plurality say the country is worse off now with Trump in the White House (41%), while 32% say the country is better off now. 53% say Trump doesn't have a clear agenda on how to address the major issues facing the country. His approval is underwater-- 50% negative/48% positive, but that's way better than Trump's national polling numbers-- where samples are less white, less rural, better educated and younger.

The people polled still hold a great deal of disdain for Hillary (and her establishment brand)-- 60% of those polled have a negative view of her, while 23% think she's swell-- but you know who they do like? That's right: Bernie, who, even among these Trumpists scores a 42% approval and just a 31% disapproval. Those numbers underscore Trump's own pollster's analysis last week when he concluded  that had Wasserman Schultz not fixed the primary for Hillary, Bernie would have beaten Trump if he won the non-fixed primary. (We'll never know.)

Even in these counties, voters have come to understand Trump is a liar. Only 43% feel he's honest and truthful. 55% say he isn't. 60% feel he's helping unite the country; 38% say he isn't-- and, remember, these are the swing counties that elected him.

Yesterday the NPR staff annotated Trump's 2016 victory speech one year after he gave it. A couple of examples-- Señor T: "I want to tell the world community that while we will always put America’s interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone." Scott Horsley is NPR's White House correspondent:
All presidents try to put America’s interests first, but Trump has defined American interests in narrower, more transactional terms than his predecessors. He has spurned international agreements like the Paris Climate Accord and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, preferring to deal with other countries one on one. In some cases, this puts him at odds with American business.
Señor T: The first man, the first senator, the first major, major politician and let me tell you he is respected in Washington because he's as smart as you get, Sen. Jeff Sessions. Where's Jeff?" Ryan Lucas is NPR's Justice Dept reporter:
As a U.S. senator from Alabama, Jeff Sessions was an early supporter of Trump, publicly endorsing his candidacy in February 2016. He then joined the campaign as a trusted policy adviser, leading his national security advisory committee during the race. After Trump’s election win, the former businessman rewarded Sessions for his early endorsement and loyalty by nominating him to serve as attorney general. Sessions, a former U.S. attorney in Alabama, faced a bumpy confirmation, particularly over his past statements about race, but he was ultimately confirmed by the Senate on Feb. 8 on a party-line vote, 52-47.

Since taking over at the Justice Department, Sessions’ stint as attorney general has been marked by turbulence and significant policy shifts. He has been reprimanded both publicly and privately by Trump for recusing himself from the Russia investigation because of his role in the campaign (and his contacts with Russian officials during the race). But Sessions also has implemented a “tough on crime” agenda and pursued policies to crack down on illegal immigration that were major talking points of the Trump campaign.
Señor T: "Gen. Mike Flynn. Where is Mike? Again, Ryan Lucas, the Justice Dept reporter:
Michael Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general and former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency under Obama, was a vocal Trump supporter during the campaign. He famously led chants at the Republican National Convention of “Lock her up!”-- a reference to Hillary Clinton.

After Trump won the election, he tapped Flynn as his national security adviser. But Flynn resigned after less than a month in the post after it emerged that he had mischaracterized the nature of his conversations with the Russian ambassador to the U.S., particularly to Vice President Pence.

During the 2016 race, Flynn lobbied for Turkey without registering as a foreign agent. His company received $600,000 to run an influence campaign designed to discredit a Turkish cleric, Fethullah Gulen, who lives in the U.S. but whom the Turkish government has accused of orchestrating a failed coup there last summer. Gulen has denied any responsibility.
Señor T: "So it's been what they call a 'historic event.'" Jessica Taylor, an NPR politics reporter:
There were certainly historic aspects to Trump’s widely unexpected victory. He became the first president to not have either prior political or military experience to enter the White House. He also had the largest popular vote deficit-- almost 3 million votes-- of any person to go on to win the Electoral College.

And while Trump would go on to frequently tout his win as a “massive electoral landslide,” as PolitiFact noted, he was nowhere near the top.

Catching Up On Last Night: Trump Lost Everywhere

New Jersey and Virginia both saw big Democratic wins. In Virginia it was a Democratic sweep for the 3 statewide elective offices, Governor, Lt. Governor and Attorney General. But the biggest news-- and the most disastrous for Trump-- was that the Democrats were expected to pick up between 4 and 6 seats in the House of Delegates. Instead, they picked up 15 with 2 more too-close-to-call. A dozen or so of the highlights nationally:
Mainers voted 59.1-40.9% to expand Medicaid
Manchester, NH replaced a Republican mayor with a Democratic woman-- first female mayor
Delaware County, PA flipped from GOP to Dem control for first time in 40 years
Charlotte, NC elected first black female mayor
Philly elected a Black Lives Matter lawyer as District Attorney
Virginia elected the first transgender state legislator, Danica Roem defeating the right-wing incumbent who introduced the bathroom bill
New Jersey and Virginia both elected black Lt. Governors
Washington flipped the State Senate from red to blue
Durham city government flipped to progressive majority
Atlantic City mayor flips from red to blue
Aurora, Colorado elected a Latino Democrat over a Trump-supporting Republican incumbent
St. Paul, Minnesota elected progressive African-American Melvin Carter as mayor, the city's first black mayor
Jenny Durkan will become Seattle’s first lesbian mayor-- and first woman mayor since 1928
Democrats flipped both suburban county executive seats-- Nassau and Westchester-- from red to blue. GOP heavies Rob Astorino and Jack Martins both lost to Democrats
 Democratic Socialist Lee Carter defeated the Republican House majority whip, shocking both party establishments
Dems flipped three Georgia state House seats in deep red districts

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At 6:14 AM, Anonymous Hone said...

All of this is very hopeful yet Trump will surely do something awful to change the tune. War, anyone? He is a despicable, self interested, disturbed, stupid, deceitful con artist, among other negative things ad infinitum.

At 6:44 AM, Anonymous ap215 said...

Do i detect some turmoil in the Trump-Bannon GOP camp let's hope these victories is a sign of things to come congrats Team Blue.

At 7:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What Hone says about Trump can also largely be used to describe the DNC-led Democratic Party. Their only goal is to remain in control of the Party and siphon off the "donations" to those who are part of the cabal.

The fact that some Democrats won yesterday despite the opposition of the Democratic Party leaders only reveals how much worse the Republicans are.

At 7:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the key phrase, last night and going forward: " much worse the Republicans are." Hell of a way to run a country!

At 6:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We saw this in the 2006-2008 time frame too. cheney/bush were universally loathed, though less than trump. The democraps reaped unearned seats by voter reflex mostly.

The democraps took all that unearned windfall... and summarily REFUSED to earn it. And the next elections reflexively whiplashed back the other way, which is how we got this guy and his cabal of Nazi pinheads.

I still think the democraps don't want majorities in DC. Maybe states are different, but I don't know what the democraps can do much different. They have always been paralyzed by fear of upsetting a single Nazi voter. Bold and progressive change, their mandate, is almost surely not going to be done.

In DC, the money people ARE the democrap party and rule the caucuses as malevolent despots. Nothing there will ever change as long as the democrap/money coalition exists. And the money half of that will guarantee it won't ever go away until voters make it.


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