October, 2016

Trump Slams Kasich for Not Backing Him

“With fewer than two weeks until Election Day, Donald Trump is going after John Kasich, criticizing the Ohio governor for not backing him after the Republican presidential primary,” CNN reports.

Said Trump: “Well, it’s very disappointing. The governor was an opponent of mine during the primaries. And I understand, he took a, it was a very big defeat for him, he took a very big defeat and he went down hard. But he did sign a pledge and he didn’t honor the pledge.”

U.S. Economic Growth Accelerates

“U.S. economic growth accelerated last quarter, easing fears of a near-term slowdown but doing little to change the trajectory of a long but weak expansion,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

“Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.9% annual rate in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said. That was stronger growth than the second quarter’s pace of 1.4%. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expected growth at a 2.5% pace for the July-to-September period. Last quarter’s growth rate was the fastest recorded in two years.”

Why Democrats Need a Stronger Republican Party

Catherine Rampell: “The end of a principled, intellectually coherent, organizationally robust center-right party is bad for democracy. It’s also bad for Democrats, given some of the dumb ideas flourishing on the left that desperately need a thoughtful counterweight.”

“But even on priorities on which liberals are likely to make progress, the lack of an honest, articulate, respected adversary is troubling. That’s because liberals need a worthy intellectual rival to sharpen their thinking and keep their own bad ideas in check. Right now a number of bad ideas booming on the left need a credible, coherent, megaphoned rebuttal. These are ideas that may sound nice and perhaps appear helpful. But pursuing many of them would be, at best, irrelevant and ineffective, a waste of time and resources; at worst, they would be actively harmful to the marginalized groups that bleeding-heart liberals claim to champion.”

Noam Bramson: Work to beat the Republican party on November 8 and to save it starting November 9.

Clinton Holds Massive Cash Advantage

Playbook: “With less than two weeks to go before the big day, Donald Trump — a real estate titan who says his net worth exceeds $10 billion — faces a massive cash deficit. The latest campaign finance reports put Hillary Clinton ahead in the money race by nearly $100 million, an amount our colleague Ken Vogel says is like nothing he’s ever seen. Trump has promised to spend $100 million of his own money, but so far, he’s only spent a little over $56 million — and put just $31,000 into his campaign during the first few weeks of October.”

The GOP Headed for a Long Civil War

Politico: “This election, the conventional wisdom goes, has done tremendous damage to the American body politic, but nowhere is the damage as severe as it is inside the party that nominated the wrecking ball known as Donald Trump. Now the party of Ronald Reagan is being led by a man with no discernible ideological leanings, save for an affinity with some of history’s ugliest. In the face of mounting evidence that Hillary Clinton is set to dominate the electoral map on November 8, Republicans across the right side of the spectrum recognize there’s defeat coming. And behind the scenes, in conversations and closed-door venues—the Hoover gathering was not open to the public—the people who once considered themselves the heart, or at least the head, of the party have begun a very pessimistic reckoning.”

“As yet there seems to be no coherent vision for what kind of future November 9 brings for the Republican Party—or, for that matter, if there will even be a Republican Party they could support.”

Clinton Wants Biden as Secretary of State

“Joe Biden is at the top of the internal short list Hillary Clinton’s transition team is preparing for her pick to be secretary of state,” a source familiar with the planning tells Politico.

“Neither Clinton nor her aides have yet told Biden. According to the source, they’re strategizing about how to make the approach to the vice president, who almost ran against her in the Democratic primaries but has since been campaigning for her at a breakneck pace all over the country in these final months.”

Kirk Flubs Debate with Duckworth

After Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) explained that she was a “daughter of the American Revolution” and had “bled for this nation” in a debate, Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) responded: “I forgot that your parents came all the way from Thailand to serve George Washington.”

Duckworth’s silence makes it even more devastating.

None of Trump’s Inner Circle Has Donated

Daily Beast: “With less than two weeks until the election, Donald Trump has amassed an impressive army of small donors, fueling his bid with individual contributions of $200 or less. But noticeably absent from the list of contributors is basically anyone with the last name Trump, many of the surrogates who represent The Donald on national television, and members of his own campaign staff.”

Who Could Replace Paul Ryan?

“Speaker Paul Ryan’s suddenly shaky future as House speaker is already prompting closed-door talk among House Republicans about who’d take over if he steps aside or is spurned by archconservatives,” Politico reports.

“Between his falling out with Donald Trump and his ongoing standoff with the House Freedom Caucus, some Republicans are speculating that Ryan might just step aside if he can’t muster the votes. The question preoccupying everyone: Who would replace him if that happens?”

Wall Street Journal: Paul Ryan faces precarious path to remain Speaker