September, 2016

Is Ohio No Longer a Battleground?

“After decades as one of America’s most reliable political bellwethers, an inevitable presidential battleground that closely mirrored the mood and makeup of the country, Ohio is suddenly fading in importance this year,” the New York Times reports.

“Hillary Clinton has not been to the state since Labor Day, and her campaign has yet to schedule a return visit, effectively acknowledging that Donald Trump will be hard to beat here. Ohio has failed to keep up with the demographic changes transforming the United States, growing older, whiter and less educated than the nation at large.”

Trump Could Win If He Registered More White Voters

David Wasserman: “Here’s a scary stat for Democrats: In 2012, President Obama won re-election by almost 5 million votes, but about 47 million eligible white voters without a college degree — including 24 million men — didn’t bother to vote. In 2016, these nonvoters are part of the demographic that is most strongly in favor of Donald Trump.”

“If Trump rouses even a fraction of these notoriously disaffected Americans… he could surge to victory. There’s just one catch: If we’re on the cusp of a blue-collar Great Awakening, it’s not yet showing up in the registration data.”

Will Clinton Lose the Corruption Issue to Trump?

Jonathan Chait:”Donald Trump’s campaign is signaling that its new, post-first-debate message will be an attack on Hillary Clinton’s finances, under the catchphrase ‘Follow the money.; This is probably Trump’s most fruitful avenue of attack. The Clinton Foundation has created appearances of a conflict of interest, and the Clintons’ policy of accepting speaking fees from any source as long as the check would clear the bank has tarnished her image, and months of bashing at the hands of Bernie Sanders left her branded in the mind of many young liberals as a handmaiden of Wall Street.”

“And yet the notion that a voter ought to support Trump over Clinton on grounds of financial ethics or transparency is insane. Trump is corrupt on a world-historic scale. Andrew Prokop’s summary merely skims the surface of a career that has left hardly any rule or norm of business conduct un-violated. It is not only Trump’s history of misconduct, or even his ongoing abuse of his foundation for personal gain, but his astonishing promise, if elected, to continue to abuse his power to enrich himself by having his children manage his branded business that he will enhance via public office.”

“Even if none of that were true, it remains the case that Trump has shattered modern precedent by refusing to disclose his tax returns. How on Earth can a candidate run on the slogan ‘Follow the money’ while stonewalling any questions about his own money?”

A Pattern to Trump’s Lies

Washington Post: “Donald Trump is the most unusual politician we’ve ever fact-checked, given the sheer volume of his misstatements, falsehoods and unreliable statistics. Trump is on track to earn more Four-Pinocchio ratings by himself than all other Republican politicians (or Democrats) combined in the past three years.”

“But there is a distinctive pattern to Trump’s biggest fibs. When challenged with irrefutable evidence that his statement is wrong, Trump will grasp at the flimsiest pieces of evidence to insist that he is right, even if the new evidence contradicts or undermines what he had originally claimed. But he will not back down or suggest he might have made even a minor error, creating an illusion for his supporters that his false claim is based on verifiable facts.”

Here Come the Reinforcements

Rick Klein: “Michelle Obama and Bernie Sanders hit the campaign trail Wednesday for Hillary Clinton. Their separate events would be easy enough to miss in the blur of political news, particularly in the wake of the first general-election presidential debate. But those unlikely supporters are critical to the Clinton campaign’s efforts to solidify and energize the Democratic base this fall. The two former political foes of the Democratic presidential nominee hold distinct but distinctly important appeals for voters where Clinton has significant weaknesses.”

Russia Actively Trying to Undermine the U.S. Election

“Since the spring, U.S. intelligence and law-enforcement agencies have seen mounting evidence of an active Russian influence operation targeting the 2016 presidential election. It is very unlikely the Russians could sway the actual vote count, because our election infrastructure is decentralized and voting machines are not accessible from the Internet. But they can sow disruption and instability up to, and on, Election Day, more than a dozen senior U.S. officials tell Time, undermining faith in the result and in democracy itself.”

Trump Pretends Not to Talk About Clinton Sex Scandals

Eric Trump says it took “a lot of courage” for his father not to attack former President Bill Clinton on his extramarital affairs, NBC News reports.

Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway said Trump showed “presidential virtue” by not talking about the Clinton scandals.

“The scandals, of course, have been successfully revived by Trump and his allies this week — including in this article — by pretending not to talk about them.”

Trump Furious at Campaign Leaks

“Donald Trump is angry that his aides and advisers have conceded to reporters — largely without attribution — that the Republican nominee struggled in his first presidential debate,” CNN reports.

“In a conference call with surrogates Wednesday afternoon, Trump aides made clear the Republican nominee is upset that his allies publicly acknowledged they pushed him to change his preparation and tactics before his next bout with Hillary Clinton. And he wants them to stop it immediately.”

Trump Wanted to Fire Women Who Weren’t Pretty Enough

Los Angeles Times: “After the Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos Verdes opened for play in 2005, its world-famous owner didn’t stop by more than a few times a year to visit the course hugging the coast of the Pacific.”

“When Trump did visit, the club’s managers went on alert. They scheduled the young, thin, pretty women on staff to work the clubhouse restaurant  — because when Trump saw less-attractive women working at his club, according to court records, he wanted them fired.”

Kaepernick Says Both Candidates Are Racist

“Colin Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback who has refused to stand during the national anthem as a way of protesting discrimination, called both major presidential candidates liars and said they seemed to be trying to ‘debate who’s less racist,'” the New York Times reports.

Said Kaepernick: “To me, it was embarrassing to watch that these are our two candidates. Both are proven liars, and it almost seems like they’re trying to debate who’s less racist. And at this point, talking with one of my friends, it was, you have to pick the lesser of two evils, but in the end, it’s still evil.”

Clinton Struggles to Win Back Young Voters

“With just six weeks to go until Election Day, younger voters are shunning the two major political parties on a scale not seen since Ross Perot’s third-party bid for the presidency in 1992, a striking swing in public opinion that is slicing into Hillary Clinton’s thin margin for error,” the New York Times reports.

“Though young people are notoriously fickle about showing up at the polls, they are a growing and potentially pivotal bloc of voters. Millennials now outnumber baby boomers as the country’s largest generation. And while they may be more predisposed than other groups to vote Democratic, they are not moving toward the party and its nominee as quickly and predictably as they have in past elections.”

Wall Street Journal: Sanders helps Clinton court young voters