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    Donald Trump Tag

    Despite his and his team's efforts, Rand Paul's presidential campaign has simply not taken off.  The global unrest and Islamic terrorist threat work against him in this cycle, and he's clearly shaken by how little support he has managed to acquire.  In addition to refusing to appear in the undercard debate, Rand is now taking a stand against Donald Trump. In an interview on The Alan Colmes Show, he vowed to spend his "every waking hour" to "try to stop Donald Trump." The Hill reports:
    Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul on Thursday pleged to spend "every waking hour" trying to keep rival Donald Trump from winning the GOP nomination. "Donald Trump takes us in the wrong direction. He would be a disaster. We’ll be slaughtered in a landslide," Paul said in an interview on the Alan Colmes radio show, as first reported by BuzzFeed. "That’s why my every waking hour is to try to stop Donald Trump from being our nominee." "I think we, the Republican Party, becomes the party of angry people that insinuate that most immigrants are drug dealers or rapists, that’s a terrible direction for our party," he said.

    I was a guest on Caffeinated Thoughts Radio on 93.3 FM in Iowa on Saturday, January 16, 2016. (Full audio at bottom of post.) The topic was Ted Cruz and the "natural born Citizen" controversy. For my prior analysis, which is referred to in the radio discussion, see my September 3, 2013 post, natural born Citizens: Marco Rubio, Bobby Jindal, Ted Cruz. In the past 2.5 years, many people have sent me complaints and supposed analyses of things I missed; I track those down and not a one has persuaded me one iota that my analysis was wrong. As I said in that post:
    I also am not trying to “win” the argument. I have no intention (hah!) of getting into the endless argument streams this topic engenders, where for every answer there is a new obscure historical reference or convoluted theory until someone gives up. There are some things you just can’t “win” on the internet, and this is one of them.
    Yet it sickens me the way Donald Trump and Ann Coulter have demagogued the issue. They may be successful in creating doubts in voters' minds; that's the nature of propaganda, it sometimes works. Here are excerpts from my interview; the full audio is at the bottom of the post:

    The new Michael Bay film "13 Hours" is out now and is by all accounts, an accurate portrayal of the 2012 terror attack in Benghazi, Libya. In a move that is as funny as it is politically savvy, Donald Trump is making sure the voters of Iowa get a chance to see it. The Des Moines Register reports:
    Trump rents Iowa theater to show Benghazi movie Donald Trump has rented space at an Urbandale movie theater and will give Iowans free tickets to a showing of the Benghazi movie that critics of Hillary Clinton have been eagerly awaiting. “Mr. Trump would like all Americans to know the truth about what happened at Benghazi,” the GOP presidential candidate’s Iowa co-chair Tana Goertz said Thursday night.

    The exchange between Ted Cruz and Donald Trump on "NY values" was one of the highlights of last night's debate. While Cruz clearly was referring to liberalism, he used a phrase that left him open to Trump's counterattack invoking 9/11: The media is thrilled with Trump's response. Of course, much of that media is in or from NY City. I expressed last night that I wasn't sure that the issue would play in Trump's favor outside NY. I was born in NYC, spent my early childhood there, grew up in and returned to the NYC suburbs after law school until moving to Rhode Island in 1993. And since 2008 have lived (originally part time now full time) in Ithaca. I understand what Cruz was referring to. And it has nothing to do with knocking the heroism of NY police and firemen, or how New Yorkers reacted under attack. It has everything to do with political, economic and social outlooks which are not accepted in the Republican Party in general much less among conservatives. The Cruz campaign apparently thinks this is a fight it needs to have, via Washington Examiner:

    Big Picture

    Tonight's GOP debate was Ted Cruz's night. He went right after Donald Trump multiple times, but in a way that came across as forceful and informed, but not nasty. He also fended off a pretty vigorous attack from Marco Rubio. His strongest points came early and against Trump, when the audience would be the largest. Trump was runner-up. He had a good moment on Cruz's slam on "NY Values," but I'm not sure how defending NY values plays outside NY. His performance will confirm pre-existing views of him. Rubio had an okay night, not great, not horrible. Maneuvered the immigration issue into one of national security -- in other words Gang of 8 was then, this is now. Landed some punches on Cruz at the end. Christie may have raised his profile as the acceptable establishment candidate, as Jeb again failed to impress, and Kasich was Kasich. At least Christie showed some fight. Biggest loser -- Ben Carson. Didn't seem to be in the game at many levels.

    Joining Chris Matthews' Hardball on MSNBC Monday night, Republican strategist Liz Mair sparred with columnist and purveyor of outrage, Ann Coulter, over Donald Trump's candidacy. Coulter, Mitt Romney fan girl and Chris Christie acolyte has been a champion of Trump's candidacy since he announced. Mair, who runs the PAC Trump Card LLC, the "guerrilla effort" to thwart Donald Trump's candidacy, is leading the charge to "Make America Awesome (America is Already Great!)." The result? A smackdown you won't want to miss:

    Bill Kristol, Founder and Editor of that mainstay of the Republican Establishment, The Weekly Standard, has finally come to recognize Donald Trump's contribution to the Republican candidates as a group. Kristol is not a Trump supporter and has predicted his fall for months.  After Trump derided John McCain's heroism for merely being a POW for five-plus years, Kristol said, "he's dead to me."  In the same interview he opined, "I don't think he'll stay up in the polls, incidentally. Republican primary voters are pro-respect the military. And he showed disrespect for the military." In September, Kristol said on CNN, “I doubt I’d support Donald. I doubt I’d support the Democrat.” Instead, “I think I’d support getting someone good on the ballot as a third party candidate.”  In reporting Kristol's comments, Salon referred to him as a "notorious neocon" and a "neocon prince."

    A new survey shows that Donald Trump has bipartisan appeal and that some Democratic voters would abandon Hillary to vote for him in a general election match-up. If you enjoy imagining nightmare scenarios for Democrats, you'll love this. James Warren of U.S. News and World Report has the story:
    Trump Could Win It All So if Donald Trump proved the political universe wrong and won the Republican presidential nomination, he would be creamed by Hillary Clinton, correct? A new survey of likely voters might at least raise momentary dyspepsia for Democrats since it suggests why it wouldn't be a cakewalk. The survey by Washington-based Mercury Analytics is a combination online questionnaire and "dial-test" of Trump's first big campaign ad among 916 self-proclaimed "likely voters" (this video shows the ad and the dial test results). It took place primarily Wednesday and Thursday and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percent.

    As we discussed last weekend, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders' is wooing supporters of Republican presidential contender, Donald Trump. Not uncommon in a general election, reaching across party lines to glad-hand during primary season should be bizarre. But in this particular election cycle, both Trump and Sanders' strongest support comes from two strikingly similar groups of disenchanted Americans. Back to last weekend's post exploring this phenomenon:
    Sound impossible? Data suggests otherwise. Though Trump has successfully syphoned off some traditional Republican supporters, the majority of his support base is comprised of a very particular kind of Democrat.

    In the wake of Donald Trump's call for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the U.S., the UK saw a huge response to a petition that calls for Trump to be banned from the UK.   While there is a petition against banning Trump, it has, so far, only 39,537 signatures. With 560,000 signatures on the petition for a ban, the UK parliament has tempered its initial stance and is now set to debate the Trump ban after all. The Guardian reports:
    MPs are to debate calls for the US presidential candidate Donald Trump to be banned from the UK following his controversial comments about Muslims, after more than half a million people signed a petition.

    Everyone knows Donald Trump is very active on Twitter but now it's official. Out of everyone running for president, Trump pretty much killed it on social media. Hadas Gold reported at Politico:
    Trump dominated rivals on social media in 2015 In 2015, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump dominated his rivals on social media, causing news cycles to pivot on the click of a Tweet button — or even a Retweet button. That’s the consensus of nearly every social-media analytics firm and expert. What it may mean as the campaign unfolds into 2016 is less of a unanimous vote. One reason Trump seemed to run the board on social media: Unlike other candidates, whose feeds were carefully curated and run by staff, Trump tweeted, Facebooked and Instagrammed directly to followers, often seemingly off the top of his head.

    I've been ill the past couple of day with a bad stomach flu, so I had a chance to vegitate in front of the TV. At least on Fox News in Scottsdale, where I am now, it's been nearly non-stop Jeb attack ads on Trump. Not technically Jeb, but the SuperPAC supporting Jeb: This ad epitomizes the inability of Jeb or his supporters to deal with Trump. The overwhelming image in my mind from the ad is of Trump mocking Jeb. See the featured image.
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