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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Is The Presidential Race Tightening?

by JASmius

Well, just going by the RCP average that showed Mrs. Clinton up by double-digits a month or so ago and now shows her lead having shrunk to three points....

Polling Data

PollDateSampleMoEClinton (D)Trump (R)Spread
RCP Average4/22 - 5/18----45.842.5Clinton +3.3
FOX News5/14 - 5/171021 RV3.04245Trump +3
Rasmussen Reports5/17 - 5/181000 LV3.03742Trump +5
Gravis5/10 - 5/101574 RV2.54846Clinton +2
PPP (D)5/6 - 5/91222 RV3.24741Clinton +6
CNN/ORC4/28 - 5/1890 RV3.55441Clinton +13
IBD/TIPP4/22 - 4/28814 RV3.54740Clinton +7

....the objective observer would have to say, yes, it has.

Why it has is a good question, as there does not appear to be much in the way of a credible proximate cause for it.  Perhaps his side of the primaries being done while hers is still, technically, ongoing, leaving him free to concentrate his biliousness on her while her focus is still divided at least partially accounts for the narrowing.  And I could always point out that the now-two polls showing Trump leading are the one from his personal house media organ and the one that has had a marked and since-discredited GOP bias for several years now, going back to the 2012 cycle.  Filter them out and Hillary is enjoying an average seven-point lead.  But the "every poll that doesn't yield results I want to see is wrong!" dodge is a Trumplican gimmick on which I have no desire to infringe.  I said two weeks ago that if there was any pro-Trump poll that lined up with the first one I noted then, I would make public note of it.  So I shall continue to do.

I'll also note that Mrs. Clinton's punting on Trump's "rape" attack on Mr. Bill, against the backdrop of his Republican primary opponents having done the equivalent until the final couple of months of the primary season and the results it got them, is probably not a wise step of inaction.

But then the La Clinton Nostra nuclear carpet-bombing has not yet begun, either.  I've predicted for the past two years that the Empress is going to run the most dirty, despicably, disgustingly negative
campaign in American political history because, with no record and no accomplishments (positive ones, anyway) on which to run, radioactive negativity is all she's got.  Which is why she'd have gotten curb-stomped by pretty much anybody else in the GOP field, who'd have had positive reasons to vote for them as opposed to just against her.  As it is, she drew the one candidate she's capable of beating, and his - forget campaign strategy, his uncontrollable instinct - is eye for an eye/tooth for a tooth negativity.  Which may help explain her declining to get into the mud pit with Trump over Bill and Juanita Broaddrick - i.e. she's playing the sympathy/"You have to be nice to the girl" angle.  Yeah, it's a canyonesque stretch, but if anybody could make Hillary Clinton look like a sympathetic figure, it's a bully like Donald Trump.

We didn't have to have a dumpster fire of a general campaign, Trumplicans, but you got what you wanted.  Don't get pissed off when the Clintons prove to be better at it than your hero.

But if there is a means by which the New York liberal conman could actually become POTUS, it is an avenue that should sound very familiar to Trumpers: A third party candidacy on the left:

At least for the moment, the #BernieorBust people are even more dedicated and numerous than the #NeverTrump movement, at least according to their own reckoning. And they are causing Hillary Clinton potentially serious problems in her general election matchups.

It’s one thing for Bernie supporters to say they will actually pull the lever for Trump in the general – I doubt many of them will. It would be a completely different and game-changing dynamic altogether if Bernie were actually on the ballot himself in November. And many of his supporters are clamoring for just that....

Bernie is (as has often been observed) very old and may well see his career in the Senate as coming to an end. Furthermore, he has done nothing to dissuade his supporters from entertaining the notion that the Democrat Party has treated him unfairly and is somehow screwing him out of the nomination, even though Hillary Clinton has clearly gotten several million more votes than he has. So it’s entirely possible that Bernie himself feels that way, facts be damned.

And who knows, maybe Bernie is saying to himself, “This is my opportunity to make the socialist party mainstream in America, to run openly as one against the two most unpopular major party candidates in America.” Heck, it makes a lot of sense from where I sit as a strategic play, if Bernie really believes what he is saying.

It's highly unlikely, and for the same reason that a conservative independent run isn't going to happen: logistics and time.  Ross Perot's 1992 and 1996 independent candidacies were planned that way from the start and got themselves on all fifty State ballots.  Any independent run on either side of the ideological divide now would have to start from scratch with under six months to go and some States' ballot deadlines (e.g. Texas) already having passed.

But if Weekend Bernie did go (back) indy, maybe even via a write-in campaign, and if enough Bern-feelers were sufficiently hardcore to stick it out for the crazy, wild-eyed old Vermonter, and if the Rodham-Trump race were close enough, who knows?  I figure, back-of-the-envelope-style, that based upon the percentage of the Donk primary vote he's won, and figuring in partisan tribalist centrifugal pull, Senator Sanders could syphon away maybe a mid-single-digits percentage of the popular vote.  If a significant chunk of that came in "swing/battleground" States, who knows?  That might be enough to tip the election to Hairboy.


And this story isn't going to help, coming from Trump's loudest endorser in the House:

The first member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump for president doesn’t envision one of Trump’s main campaign promises – a wall at the Mexican border – ever becoming a reality that stretches from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico.

“I have called it a virtual wall,” Representative Chris Collins said in an interview with the Buffalo News.

“Maybe we will be building a wall over some aspects of it; I don’t know,” the Clarence Republican said of Trump’s proposed barrier to keep illegal [alien]s and drugs from crossing the southern border.

Collins, who has become one of the presumptive "GOP" nominee’s main media surrogates, also cast doubts on another central Trump campaign promise: the candidate’s vow to deport the nation’s [thirty] million undocumented immigrants.

I call it a rhetorical deportation of [thirty] million people,” Collins said.

He then gestured toward a door in his Capitol Hill office.

“They go out that door, they go in that room, they get their work papers, Social Security number, then they come in that door, and they’ve got legal work status but are not citizens of the United States,” Collins said. “So there was a virtual deportation as they left that door for processing and came in this door.”

Collins added: “We’re not going to put them on a bus, and we’re not going to drive them across the border.” [emphases added]

Or, in other words, touchback-amnesty.  Just as Trump himself admitted nine months ago.

Donald Trump is reneging on everything he promised Trumplicans he was going to do if they would nominate him - self-funding his campaign, making nice with the "establishment," tax cuts, no minimum wage hike, and now the core of his candidacy, TrumpWall and mass deportations.  Why?  Because he was bullshitting them all along, and they wanted to be bullshat and still do.  Which, in turn, is why they won't abandon him now despite this long-predicted across-the-board betrayal.  Their emotional investment is too great and the public humiliation of admitting it would be too traumatic.

And, yes, "Hillary Clinton makes Satan look like Jesus Christ".

Imagine the brain cells #NoneOfTheAbovers are saving by not yoking ourselves to this nonsense.

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