2016 General Election, 2016 Republicans, Counting Delegates, Trump, Uncategorized, Veepstakes

The Agony of #NeverTrump

July 14, 2016

Until he actually becomes the official nominee a week from now, there’s still technically a chance the GOP nominee could, ever so possibly, be someone other than Donald Trump. You shouldn’t bet on it unless you get insanely good odds though. And only bet money you’re very prepared to lose.

More Republican insiders, delegates, and other elected officials are opposed to the nominee than any time since 1964. There are delegates pledged to Trump who strongly prefer Ted Cruz. Trump has record low favorability ratings. He’s somehow still trailing Hillary Clinton in more polls than not, even after FBI Director James Comey explained in great detail where she went terribly wrong with her email server. Continue reading

2016 General Election, 2016 Republicans, Strategy, Trump, Uncategorized, Veepstakes

Who Should Trump Pick?

July 13, 2016

The decision is imminent. Sometime in the next 48 hours Donald Trump will end our suspense and choose a running mate. CBS is taping a 60 Minutes interview with Trump and his Veep-to-be on Friday. He’ll leak the choice ahead of the interview, which airs on Sunday evening.

If he hasn’t already decided, he’s making the choice now. So we’re looking at a similar chessboard, though likely with different vision. This is not an attempt to guess what Trump will do. We’re asking ourselves what a candidate in Trump’s position, with his proclivities should do. Continue reading

2016 General Election, 2016 Republicans, Strategy, Trump, Uncategorized

Sheriff Lewandowski

July 5, 2016

Corey Lewandowski is gone from the Trump campaign, but definitely not forgotten. He got himself hired by CNN, despite having signed a non-disclosure agreement with the campaign that effectively prohibits him from criticizing his ex-boss. The network has a couple other paid Trump supporters, but they weren’t his body man/campaign manager for a year.

This means what Lewandowski says on CNN is far more likely to get picked up by Politico and other media outlets than his pro-Trump peers. He’s also not exactly subtle or layered in defending Trump, making it even easier to repeat his comments. When Trump (and/or his campaign) does something extra Trumpy (like using a Star of David on top of a money pile in a tweet), it’s Corey Time. Continue reading

2016 General Election, 2016 Republicans, Counting Delegates, Strategy, Trump, Uncategorized, Veepstakes

Trump Enters the Cocoon

June 28, 2016

Three weeks from today is Day Two of the Republican convention. Three weeks from tomorrow, Donald Trump’s vice presidential nominee will give his/her speech. Between now and then, expect to see quite a bit less Trump. It doesn’t mean he’ll be out of the news, or won’t say anything interesting. He’s not entering the Candidate Protection Program, but he will be a bit under the radar, at least by Trumpian standards.

On the morning of April 6, Trump was in trouble. Ted Cruz had just defeated him in Wisconsin. This came after losing two of three contests in the previous round of primaries on March 22 (he won Arizona, lost badly to Cruz in Idaho, and finished third in Utah.) #NeverTrump was in the ascendant.  Continue reading

2016 Democrats, 2016 General Election, 2016 Republicans, State of the Race, Trump, Uncategorized

The He Said, She Said Campaign

June 22, 2016

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton gave a speech devoted to slamming her opponent on the economy. Today Donald Trump responded. Each address was a recitation of the flaws of the other candidate. We heard about all the countries Trump-branded products are made in. Hint: the United States wasn’t one of them. Hillary uncorked a line about Trump books ending in Chapter 11. The speechwriter was proud of himself for that one.

Trump reminded us of the millions of dollars the Clinton Foundation collected from Saudi Arabia. We heard about foreign governments hacking Hillary’s home server, how the FBI is missing 33,000 deleted emails, but the Russians and/or Chinese likely have them and are prepared to blackmail her while in office. The combined charges are too numerous to list.  Continue reading

2016 Republicans, State of the Race, Strategy, Trump, Uncategorized

Bye Bye Corey

June 20, 2016

Corey Lewandowski is no more. After a tempestuous year in the upper reaches of the Trump campaign organization, he was forcibly ejected from service today. While he helped an electoral novice to the top of the polls last fall, and was at least part of the brains behind his mega rallies, Lewandowski was on borrowed time.

For months, various staffers bristled at his heavy-handed methods. Corey was not a charmer with the campaign staff. His altercation with reporter Michelle Fields in March cast an unwelcome spotlight on his activities. Within minutes of joining the campaign, veteran operative Paul Manafort was trying to eliminate Lewandowski. At first he didn’t succeed, but he tried and tried again. Continue reading

2016 Republicans, Counting Delegates, History, State of the Race, Strategy, Trump, Uncategorized

How Easily Could the GOP Dump Trump?

June 18, 2016

You’re starting to hear some loud whispers about an attempt to overthrow Donald Trump at the Republican convention. Like many dreams of the #NeverTrump faction, it’s technically possible and highly unlikely. The mechanism to toss out the primary/caucus results exists. Delegate commitments based on results, even on a first ballot, are only binding if the convention says they are.

Whether this is fair or just is a matter of opinion, but RNC bylaws and historical precedent allow the convention rules committee to do whatever they damn well please. Though Trump has the majority of currently pledged delegates, as we regularly heard back when Ted Cruz mattered, it doesn’t mean all of the “Trump” delegates would pick him on a first ballot if given the opportunity to choose otherwise. Continue reading