Ted Cruz working to forge a path forward

28 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Donald Trump suffers his largest drop in polls after week of controversy.

U.S. presidential hopeful Donald Trump’s support among Republicans has dropped 12 points in less than a week, marking the real estate mogul’s biggest decline since he vaulted to the top of the field in July, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll. It’s funny both Steve Breen and the editorial board (“GOP candidates must call out Trump,” Nov. 24) ridicule Donald Trump in unison as a total radical loser liability.Not since Joe McCarthy, the demagogue and bully who rose to political prominence in the early 1950s by blatantly distorting the truth, has there been a public figure like Donald Trump, the Republican front runner with a penchant for telling “the big lie” about anything from President Obama’s birthplace to Mexican immigrants’ putative criminality, and from how African Americans are responsible for most white homicides to how “thousands and thousands” of Arabs in New Jersey City cheered as the Twin Towers were attacked on 9/11 — along with a host of other fantastical tales in between. But he has undoubtedly transformed the nature of the election debate Stephen Colbert, host of the US’s Late Show, a mix of chat and satire, the other night warned his audience that Donald Trump might actually win the presidency.

Trump is still in the lead, with 31% of people surveyed naming him as their preferred candidate in a rolling poll over five days that ended on 27 November. — Donald Trump’s wife campaigned with him for the first time in South Carolina on Tuesday, telling voters she loved them and saying her husband would be “the best president, ever.” “Isn’t he the best?” Melania Trump asked the crowd of thousands in Myrtle Beach, flanked by her parents and three of the businessman’s children. “We love you.” Unlike come of his rivals’ spouses, Trump’s wife has until this point chosen to stay largely behind-the-scenes, though Trump mentions her often at events. They’re everywhere on cable news, often explaining to cameras why nothing The Donald says – no matter how outrageous or divergent from established facts – will change their view that he’s the guy needed to shake up Washington’s political culture.

Now here’s the kicker: Despite McCarthy’s inconsistencies and his refusal to produce evidence to support his claims, his charges seemed to hit a chord with a large number of Americans. Trump’s family left the stage before the Republican presidential hopeful launched into more than an hour of criticism of both his GOP rivals and the Obama administration.

The dip follows criticism of Trump for comments he made in the aftermath of the Nov. 13 Paris attacks that killed 130 people and wounded hundreds more. Conservative and liberal columnists such as Ann Coulter and Leslie Savan have argued recently that, in the wake of Paris, Trump’s brand of virulent Islamophobia is infectious and catching on and could even beat Hillary Clinton. “It’s easy to laugh at GOPers in denial,” Savan writes, “but progressives who pooh-pooh Trump’s chances of beating Hillary may be whistling past the graveyard of American democracy.” The collective wisdom after Paris – that voters would gravitate toward a battle-tested, policy-minded candidate for such turbulent times – has yet to take hold. Following the attacks, Trump told an NBC News reporter that he would support a plan requiring all Muslims within the United States to be registered to a special database, which his critics likened to the mandatory registration of Jews in Nazi Germany.

And that, dear reader, is what Donald Trump is on a campaign to accomplish, except the communist enemy is now supplanted by the Arab immigrant and the Syrian refugee. Calling President Barack Obama a “divider” who has done nothing to unite the country, Trump also again called out Hillary Rodham Clinton as lacking the “strength or the stamina” to lead the country. Trump continues to top polls: the Real Clear Politics aggregate of polls puts him on 27 per cent to 19 per cent for his nearest rival, neurosurgeon Ben Carson.

I do remember images of celebrations in so-called moderate Muslim countries, but also some here in the U.S. too — you can’t tell me there weren’t. Marco Rubio, he said, is “weak on immigration, really weak.” A few minutes into his remarks, Trump also called up on stage an impersonator he spotted in the crowd.

Trump has also been criticized for flailing his arms and distorting his speech as he mocked a New York Times reporter, Serge Kovaleski, who is disabled. According to the RealClearPolitics rolling average of major surveys, he’s currently the choice of 27.7 percent of Republican voters – almost eight percentage points up on second-place Ben Carson. Appalled at the prospect he might end up as their candidate, the Republican establishment – which still believes him to be unelectable against Clinton – has been hoping he will eventually be pushed aside by a mainstream candidate. Jeb Bush campaigned about 160 miles away in Rock Hill, South Carolina, where he collected endorsements from local elected officials and dismantled Trump’s immigration plan.

He’s now supported by 25 to 30 percent of the 25 to 30 percent of Americans who self-identify as Republicans, notes data guru Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight. Who or how is still unclear: the latest to make a surge is, however, the scarcely more acceptable Texas senator Ted Cruz, who is now just ahead in polls in early state Iowa. Talk of a wall and “making Mexico pay for it,” while deporting 11 million people, Bush said, appeals to voters’ frustrations but does little else. “It might make you sound good,” Bush said. “It might make you look like the strong guy. … It’s not going to happen. Yet it is clear that Trump does not need to win to rewrite the agenda as his rivals shuffle uncomfortably into the nativist political territory he occupies. Let’s get real with this and have a solution that’s reality based.” At an earlier stop about an hour’s drive west in Spartanburg, Bush expressed disappointment that a black protester was physically assaulted at a recent Trump rally in Alabama.

The five-day rolling average sample size ranged from 464 to 347 respondents between Nov. 22 and Nov. 27, with a credibility interval of 5.2 to 6.1 percentage points. Trump later said Mercutio Southall Jr. “maybe … should have been roughed up.” “Look, you don’t see that happening at my (events),” Bush said. “I’m trying to inspire people that life can get better for them. In the last week he has spoken of Syria’s refugees as “Trojan horses” for Islamic State and warned that “our president wants to take in 250,000”. (At least three times more than Barack Obama has suggested). The media’s attempts to debate his policy proposals with him as if they were serious or to challenge him on the facts of his ludicrous claims have consistently made no dent in his momentum. I’m not trying to play on their fears.” “Seventy percent of those people back there are absolutely total scum,” Trump said Tuesday, gesturing to the press area at the back of the arena, getting a roar and applause from the crowd.

He has also called for a register of all Muslims – which is certainly unconstitutional – suggested they should carry ID cards and warned he would “shut down mosques”. It’s hard being a Republican when the powers that be offer us Bob Dole, who famously introduced America to erectile dysfunction, and John “dry-as-dust” McCain, whose campaign was brought back to life only when he paired with Sarah Palin. This brings us to our second point: If Trump is going to win either the nomination or the general election, he will have to build on his current base. In the meantime, for those who despair at the moral bankruptcy of American political discourse that Trump’s success seems to represent, there is one consolation from polling whiz Nate Silver: Whatever the polls say, at this stage in the campaign, they still represent only a small fraction of voters’ likely intentions.

Having spent six of my military years as a nuclear delivery pilot, I want my president to employ real facts rather than just recollections, temperament and innuendo at 3 a.m. Trump may yet recover from this knockdown, but it’s still a long way to the Iowa caucuses on Feb. 1, when the party nomination process starts in earnest—let alone to the White House. It’s easy to just dismiss a malicious liar and a bigot like that as a buffoon and applaud what the Huffington Post has done recently: Relegate news about him to its entertainment section, not in the coverage of politics.

It wins him airtime, and retweets through the roof.” Most analysts still insist Trump’s lead in the Republican field will fade away as the race gets more serious. Former Bush aide Michael Gerson in the Washington Post acknowledges that: “One effect has been the legitimisation of even more extreme views – signaling that it is okay to give voice to sentiments and attitudes that, in previous times, people would have been too embarrassed to share in public.” Jeb Bush, who once spoke of immigration as positive, now believes the US should only accept Syrian refugees if Christian, a view echoed by Cruz, while New Jersey governor Chris Christie wants no Syrians at all even if they are “three-year-old orphans”. To make it a clean sweep the Chicago Tribune skewered Trump yesterday and the Baltimore Sun has reprinted a thinly veiled Los Angeles Times attack on Trump, et al concerns about Syrian refugees. Joe McCarty’s personal power collapsed in 1954 when, during televised hearings, he accused the Army of “coddling communists” — to which he got the now famous retort from a witness, “Have you no sense of decency, Sir? Americans, sooner or later, will soon see through his big lie — or simply just tire of his infantile and narcissistic tactics — and he too, in like manner, will burn out.

Which is the third and final point here: Something huuuggge would have to change in this calculation for Trump to sit in the Oval Office in an official capacity. Perhaps more important, neoconservative foreign-policy hawks, general establishment Republicans, and current GOP lawmakers might be inclined to sit on their hands.

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