Eaten by Alligators

alligator

 

There are points in history when, even though you see them coming, you can’t help but marvel when they actually happen.

Thus it is with the repeal of healthcare reform.

Obama and the Democrats figured when it was passed, that if Republicans ever gained control of all branches of government again, the political costs of taking healthcare away from millions of people would prevent the basic reforms from repeal.

They were right.

The Democrats paid a high price for healthcare reform.  It spawned the birth of the Tea Party and a particularly virulent strain of conservative know-nothing Republicanism that cost the Democrats their House majority in 2010 and essentially ground the government to a halt for the next six years.  That movement morphed in the Trumpinistas in 2016 and gave Republicans the cherished control over all branches of government.

What did they do with that legislative control – the very first thing?  They turned on each other like rabid dogs fighting over a bone.  Those same rebellious Tea Partiers whom the Republican establishment thought they could control, brought another House Speaker and another President to heal.

The reason they were able to do this, however, is posted every week.

Trump’s approval rating.

Self-preservation is important to every politician, even the members of the Freedom Caucus.  They are WAY more afraid of disappointing the folks in their safe gerrymandered deeply conservative districts than they are of the Speaker, the President, or the Republican Party.  BTW, who was responsible for those gerrymandered districts that made these Republicans untouchable by even their own party?  Why the Republican controlled legislatures that the Republican Party is so proud of.

If Trump had approval ratings in the 60% range (as Obama did when he started working on healthcare reform), this would have been a different story.  That would mean that a majority of the voters in many of the Freedom Caucus districts also approved of Trump.  He very well could have had enough leverage to get this deal done.

Instead, he and Ryan are now exposed.  The Freedom Caucus called Trump’s tough-guy bluff and Trump blinked.  Rather than dig in and do the gritty political horse trading that gets things done in Washington, Trump stepped out of the room and into a big-rig photo op where he was obviously more comfortable.

How bad of a beat was it?

The guy who constantly celebrates himself as a dynamic winner of incomparable abilities?  He was reduced to blaming Democrats for this loss because not one of them gave him a vote.  That was a surprise to him?  And now it’s the fault of the Democrats who have been defending Obamacare from Republican assaults for for seven years to the day that this assault also failed?  No this was just another in a long line of Democratic victories.  Trump’s humiliation is all his own making and his incompetence was on public display.

  1. He demonstrated that he has no understanding of the legislative process.
  2. He attempts to bully powerful people failed.  They weren’t afraid of him, ignored his threats, and knew he had a lot more to lose than they did.
  3. He doesn’t respect the political process. Those that do just demonstrated how dangerous the swamp can be for the inexperienced.

All that’s left is the sorry spectacle of a public figure being exposed as the buffoon he really is.  But as he said in Time magazine, it is certainly his right because he is the President.

The problem is that the alligators don’t care who is President and at least in this swamp, they bite back.

42 Responses to “Eaten by Alligators”

  1. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Latest polls from Gallup and Quinnipiac now have Trump in the mid 30’s and dropping.

    The Wash Post dug into the numbers.

    He’s not just down in these polls. He’s down in ALL of the polls.

    A drop of nine points among independents, though, is a loss of more than one-fifth of Trump’s support from that group over the last two months. That’s a brutal decline that may start to make Republicans nervous about how he could affect their electoral prospects over the long-term. Among those who identify as independents ideologically (as opposed to their partisan identification), the drop was 11 points, a loss of nearly a third of all support from that group since Jan. 20.

    Trump’s claim to a mandate was already historically weak, given the extent to which he lost the popular vote. But since then, his support has eroded, among the regular-voting constituencies at the core of Republican politics and among the independents needed to shore up any party’s electoral position.

    We’re not only seeing calls in the Senate side for an independent investigator, but as the details come out of Nunes secret trips to the White House, he is now being asked to recuse himself from the House investigation.

    What is Trump going to be able to do to stop this slide?

    Tax reform is going to take a long time. That isn’t going to save him.

    Things have not been going well on the military side with more civilian casualties.

    The media is still buzzing about the healthcare flop.

    Now his low approval ratings may cost him a Supreme Court nomination.

    How many more loses can he sustain?

  2. Jeff Beamsley says:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-administration-sought-to-block-sally-yates-from-testifying-to-congress-on-russia/2017/03/28/82b73e18-13b4-11e7-9e4f-09aa75d3ec57_story.html?pushid=58da6ddf5ca9ee1d00000008&tid=notifi_push_breaking-news&utm_term=.7344b4a39f9b

    And so it starts. Sally Yates was scheduled to appear before the House Intelligence Committee to testify on what she shared with the White House regarding Flynn. Nunes abruptly canceled her appearance and the White House is seeking to prevent her from testifying.

    What the White House is saying is that this is privileged communications. What Ms. Yates attorney is saying is that there have been so many public discussions about her White House meeting that her description of the details of that meeting can hardly be privileged.

    What the public is wondering is what is the White House afraid of? What is it that she may say that they don’t want the public to hear? Could this be thread, that if investigations continue to pull on it would ultimately lead to Trump?

    Nunes continues to dig a deeper hole for himself.

    It isn’t the crime that kills you. It is the cover-up. This is a President who said that, to the best of his knowledge, no one in his campaign had any conversations with any Russians. If this ends up being the big lie that takes down his Presidency, it will go down in history as FAR more damaging than the claim that “if you like your doctor you can keep them”.

  3. keith says:

    correction –
    If you like your doctor you can keep him
    If you like your plan you can keep it
    It will save the average American $2,500/yr (paraphrasing)
    🙂

    Trump is fining the biblical principal of reaping and sowing to be sort of true. He is being ruthlessly treated by the media in the same way he was ruthless to his opponents sin the primaries. I’m hoping for the best and you, while I certainly understand, should stop with your cheer-leading of the every day news cycle announcing Trumps death. The republicans have tried for years to end “Team Clinton” this way and it NEVER happened. How Bill Survived his time in the hite house is still remarkable to me.

    Many thoughts here, I’m sorry so little time. Trump is learning and we are seeing the pathetic Republicans at work. They voted 68 times to repeal the ACA while Obama was President. Now given their chance….LoL…. they fail.
    I guess no Cornhusker kick back, no Louisianan Purchase, no bribery offered or the republicans were to principled to take it… lol

    Game not over. We’re only 62 days in. Trump gave them cover by pulling the bill. I really thought he was going to expose the republicans who wouldn’t vote for his bill but, he didn’t, That could be the best, and first conciliatory, move he makes to bring others, those republicans he needs, to his side.

    My only partisan comment, NEVER my good friend for get what was exposed in the leaks last summer. A party who fixed the race for the dem nomination. A major media person and DNC chairwomen caught giving questions to Hillary, A DNC Chair person who had to step down,. all in all corruption that somehow always follows the Clinton’s.

    Hope your well my friend.

  4. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Game not over. We’re only 62 days in. Trump gave them cover by pulling the bill. I really thought he was going to expose the republicans who wouldn’t vote for his bill but, he didn’t, That could be the best, and first conciliatory, move he makes to bring others, those republicans he needs, to his side.

    You are grasping at straws.

    These guys don’t give a damn about Trump as a friend. They are only interested in what he can do to help them either advance or block their agenda.

    The problem is that Trump’s approval ratings are now into dangerous historically low levels (36% from Gallup). As I predicted, he failed MONUMENTALLY to get healthcare reform done. He has not proven yet that he is capable of governing. Even if he were capable, there is no historical precedent for a leader being able to govern when only 36% of the people believe they are doing a good job.

    What is important here is how our political system responds to a President who is so disliked.

    What has happened in the past is that investigations into potential misdeeds intensify and the President’s own party begins to oppose him. THAT’S WHAT IS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW.

    My only partisan comment, NEVER my good friend for get what was exposed in the leaks last summer. A party who fixed the race for the dem nomination. A major media person and DNC chairwomen caught giving questions to Hillary, A DNC Chair person who had to step down,. all in all corruption that somehow always follows the Clinton’s.

    Nobody cares what happened during the Clinton campaign. The election is over. Clinton lost. Her political career is OVER. The Republicans have control of everything, as you’ve said, and have demonstrated so far that they have no clue about how to go about governing.

    What people DO care about is the connection between the Russians and the Trump campaign.

    What they will find is that there WAS some collaboration between the Trump campaign and the Russians. The level of that collaboration is still not clear. What will bring the Trump administration down is the level of cover-up that they engaged in to prevent the information regarding these low level contacts from becoming public.

    Bill Clinton’s lowest approval rating was 37%. He got impeached.

    Nixon’s approval rating hit 24% when he was forced to resign.

    Bush I and Carter both hit 29% and both were essentially lame duck one-term Presidents.

    Bush II lost control of the House and Senate when his approval rating hit 30%.

    The BIG question is, WHAT is the Republican majority going to do to satisfy their voters that they deserve to get re-elected in 2018? If they can’t pass legislation, the next best thing that they will do is investigate someone. That SOMEONE is Trump because he is currently the least popular elected official that they can find.

    We are at an historically significant tipping point regarding Trump and his future.

    If he doesn’t figure out how to reverse his slide (remember his unshakable base of support is only 22%) with those who are expecting him to keep his campaign promises, he could find himself under attack from his own party. If that happens, I don’t see any way out for him.

    If you do, please feel free to share your thoughts.

  5. Jeff Beamsley says:

    correction –
    If you like your doctor you can keep him
    If you like your plan you can keep it
    It will save the average American $2,500/yr (paraphrasing)
    🙂

    BTW – Obama still got re-elected and left office as one of the most popular presidents in recent history.

    So clearly a majority of the American people forgave him for these statements. At some point, I hope that you will be able to let go of the past and focus on the future. 🙂

  6. Keith says:

    I’m sorry I forgot “it’s not a tax.” 😄

    Not looking back but simply an note of humor for you.

    I think you are way out front with how poorly it will be for Trump. You may eventually be right but after 62 days? I understand your cheerleading but geez, give it a year or two.

    Remember nobody “hung” with President Obama. He didn’t associate with anyone. It also got ugly for Reagan really fast also.

    We’ll see

    As to the market. It certainly shot up because of what the market though trumps conversitive agenda would be able to do. If he can’t it very well might go back down. Trumps fault? I say no. It was the hope for investment in infrastructure, bank deregulation, lower corporate taxes, etc that made it go up, not TRUMP. If those things don’t happen the. It could go back down. So conservative ideas are certainly responsible for the hope and optimism. You’re side would dampen it?

  7. Keith says:

    As to not making the republicans vote no. I think it was a favor he extended to those who would have voted no. Can you imagine what would, potentially, have happened to those republicans if they would have been forced to publicly vote against the bill? It should curry some sort of favor, I never said friendship.

    The dems are showing their colors in the justice G hearings. They are asking him about outcomes and what remedies would he make in certain situations a cases. I think this is the biggest difference between conservatives and progressives. Judges don’t make laws they are there to inturpate the law. Progressives don’t necessarily agree with that statement. Your thoughts?

    This guy is as impeccable as they come. But in purely political practice as normal the dems will want to gain something from this process. I believe they will force the “nuke option” so they can put a gender nutural, mars born, “in documented citizen” on the bench someday. (Hopefully you see the humor in my comment)

  8. Jeff Beamsley says:

    I think you are way out front with how poorly it will be for Trump. You may eventually be right but after 62 days? I understand your cheerleading but geez, give it a year or two.

    Not “cheerleading”. Just recognizing the fact that IT IS historic that a President would be in this precarious position so early in his presidency. This isn’t just my perception. The job approval polls speak for themselves. Those job approval numbers are based on real voters expressing their opinions regarding Trump’s performance.

    It doesn’t matter WHEN he gets into the low 30’s. The fact is that history tells us life will change the closer to that number he gets. That’s because he will no longer control his destiny. Congress will stop listening to him and none of them will take a hard vote because they know they are going have problems in 2018.

    As to the market. It certainly shot up because of what the market though trumps conversitive agenda would be able to do. If he can’t it very well might go back down. Trumps fault? I say no. It was the hope for investment in infrastructure, bank deregulation, lower corporate taxes, etc that made it go up, not TRUMP. If those things don’t happen the. It could go back down. So conservative ideas are certainly responsible for the hope and optimism. You’re side would dampen it?

    Either you are going to own your claim that Trump is responsible for the market or not. If not, then we don’t need to talk about policies. If so, then you have to give credit to Obama too and the liberal policies that drove the market to new highs. AND Trump will have to be held accountable for the end of the Trump rally and the bigger corrections that are coming.

  9. Keith says:

    What liberal policy drive the market up?

    Presidents have Elbert little over the long term to do with the market. It can be said Trumps election was worth 13%. If it falls it not sure it’s because of him, as what the market THOUGHT he would bring is what took it up. Obviously what he DID, besides get elected, was nothing! So it’s obvious what the market was cheering, conservative principals.

    I’d be hard to say what liberal principle effected the market under president Obama. Mostly it was low interest rates and week and unstable global markets. There was little for Obama to do. Some of his regulation was unnecessary but that’s over.

    I’m not cheerleading for Trump. I’m only hoping we can get good solutions to things that need fixed. The ACA needs fixed, entitlements need fixed. Our debt needs addressed. Immigration reform needs to happen. Etc. it would be best if Trump can get dems to work with him and pull a reverse 1990’s Clinton “tri-angulation”

  10. Jeff Beamsley says:

    As to not making the republicans vote no. I think it was a favor he extended to those who would have voted no. Can you imagine what would, potentially, have happened to those republicans if they would have been forced to publicly vote against the bill? It should curry some sort of favor, I never said friendship.

    So much for making friends. Trump just encouraged his followers to defeat members of the Freedom Caucus in 2018

    Combine that with Ryan’s quote from yesterday that he does not plan to work with Democrats and you have gridlock.

    Math doesn’t lie. In order to get things passed in the House, Trump needs either votes from the Freedom Caucus or votes from Democrats.

    The next big vote is coming up pretty quickly. That’s the vote to raise the debt ceiling. The Freedom Caucus is likely going to require that planned parenthood defunding language be included. That will kill the bill in the Senate and could kill it in the House too. Will the Republicans actually shut their OWN government down over a vote on planned parenthood?

    It could happen, particularly if these divisions between different factions deepen.

    BTW, the aggregate approval rating from all the polls for real clear politics and fivethirtyeight is 41% approval.

  11. Jeff Beamsley says:

    I’m not cheerleading for Trump. I’m only hoping we can get good solutions to things that need fixed. The ACA needs fixed, entitlements need fixed. Our debt needs addressed. Immigration reform needs to happen. Etc. it would be best if Trump can get dems to work with him and pull a reverse 1990’s Clinton “tri-angulation”

    I agree that it would be best for Trump to think about governing rather than picking fights and obsessing over whether or not he is winning.

    He is currently making the classic mistake that many Presidents have made in the past when under attack. He has a bunker mentality and is dividing the world into those that with him and those that are against him.

    Unless he changes course and cooperates with the current investigations, this is going to be the script for the foreseeable future. These investigations could take a year or more to run down all of the various leads. In the meantime, his party is fractured and he has lost his ability to lead them.

    Very soon concerns about 2018 will join the drip drip drip of Russian scandal.

    He is on track to suffer a large defeat in 2018 based on his current approval rating and the historic patterns for voters. Even though 2018 is not the best year for the Democrats in the Senate, he could easily lose his majority there. A change of 20 seats in the House combined with the intransigence of the Freedom Caucus could end any hope of passing legislation without Democratic votes.

    Unfortunately that’s probably a formula for continued gridlock until the next election.

    That is going to give Senate Republicans REAL CONCERNS over whether or not they eliminate the 60 vote requirement for approving a Supreme Court nominee. They could very quickly find themselves back in the position where they will need that super majority.

    So my question remains. What is Trump going to do to turn this around? What he is currently doing (constantly attacking) isn’t working. Is he capable of re-inventing himself?

    BTW, North Korea is a serious threat. They have nuclear capability and are working on rockets to be able to use that capability to threaten the US. They want to provoke the US into a response and are betting that if it comes down to a choice, China will chose North Korea over the US.

    Obama warned Trump that he needed to make North Korea his highest priority. It doesn’t appear that Trump is doing that.

    What does he do when North Korea successfully tests a missile that can reach Hawaii?

    A military response is not going to go well if we don’t have China’s permission. What is Trump doing to build closer relationships with China? Threatening them with a trade war? Threatening to disrupt the one-China policy with Taiwan?

    It is hard to estimate the costs of incompetency in the Presidency, but we probably should start keeping track.

  12. Keith says:

    Tina Fey tells college-educated white women who voted for Trump: ‘You can’t look away’ – The Washington Post
    https://apple.news/AGbCwcPTxTXq_N-8ITRlQ5Q

    Example of media bias in “what to choose to report.”

    Did the Washington Post spend time informing its readers as President Obama is in office was Laura Ingram told the ladies at, fill in the blank university or group, what they did had repercussions and THEY OWN it for voting for Obama? I only thought to send this because the media is over the top with its hatred for Trump. My news feed, CNN, CNBC, ABC, NBC WSJ is 90 percent negative and 10 percent neutral. It’s unreal.

  13. Keith says:

    Least I got get in my feed, NYT, Wash Post, Huffington Post, Sports Illustrated, and Fox

  14. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Tina Fey tells college-educated white women who voted for Trump: ‘You can’t look away’ – The Washington Post
    https://apple.news/AGbCwcPTxTXq_N-8ITRlQ5Q

    Example of media bias in “what to choose to report.”

    Did the Washington Post spend time informing its readers as President Obama is in office was Laura Ingram told the ladies at, fill in the blank university or group, what they did had repercussions and THEY OWN it for voting for Obama?

    Sorry not media bias. Just your own confirmation bias.

    The Wash Post ran almost the same story after Romney lost because not enough women voted for him. You just don’t remember seeing it. Worse you didn’t bother to look it up. It wasn’t hard to find. Please take a moment to ask yourself WHY you didn’t bother to go looking for it. If you are honest with yourself, your answer is where you will discover your own bias.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/she-the-people/wp/2012/11/07/why-romney-lost-women/?utm_term=.575379365a6b

    Instead of Tina Fey it was Ted Cruz who blamed the Republican Party for not being conservative enough in their nomination of Romney. The Wash Post ran that story too.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/conservative-republicans-fight-back-after-romney-loss/2012/11/19/4d04a050-3270-11e2-bfd5-e202b6d7b501_story.html?utm_term=.78c4ee8feb00

    I only thought to send this because the media is over the top with its hatred for Trump. My news feed, CNN, CNBC, ABC, NBC WSJ is 90 percent negative and 10 percent neutral. It’s unreal.

    This is more example of your bias. The election is over.

    Newspapers report the news. We talked about this before. The White House has an opportunity to control the news that gets printed by making the White House reporters dependent on the White House for their living. Reporters have to write stories every day. White Houses for the past three decades have helped reporters fill their daily quota of stories with stuff that was favorable to the White House.

    This White House chose not to do that. Instead they pick fights the media. When they do that, the media are going to write stories about the fights. If the White House wants them to write about something else, they have to provide that “something else” in a form that reporters can consume and redistribute. Instead the White House provides conspiracy theories and outright lies. Newspapers are supposed to educate their readers and speak truth to power. So when the White House lies, that’s the news that they print. Finally, when the White House fails to answer the questions that reporters have, those reporters find their answers elsewhere. Instead of the White House telling the story, reporters tell the story based on their reporting. That’s their job. The fact that it my unflattering is the White House’s fault, not the media. If the White House wants more favorable coverage, stop making stuff up, starting answering the questions that the press are asking, and start telling the truth.

    Your bias prevented you from seeing the bad stories that press wrote about the Obama administration, but there were plenty. The Obama administration had a terrible record on transparency and the press held them accountable for it.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/obama-promised-transparency-but-his-administration-is-one-of-the-most-secretive/2016/05/24/5a46caba-21c1-11e6-9e7f-57890b612299_story.html?utm_term=.718e407d50fa

  15. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Least I got get in my feed, NYT, Wash Post, Huffington Post, Sports Illustrated, and Fox

    I read the same list with the exception of Fox. I also listen to NPR and read the Christian Science Monitor. Though most of my news feed comes through Google News.

  16. Jeff Beamsley says:

    BTW, this opposing Trump stuff? It also happens to be good business for the newspapers.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/02/06/is-donald-trump-saving-the-news-media/?utm_term=.fef8e6c66c32

    That doesn’t mean that the press are purposely negative about the Trump administration because it is something that their readers want to read.

    What it DOES mean is that people are willing to pay for news that helps them understand what is going on.

    The chaos that surrounds the Trump administration is generating demand for information from sources that can be trusted. According to the polls, the media is significantly more trustworthy than Trump. So it shouldn’t be surprising that subscription rates for the WashPost and NYTimes are up.

  17. Jeff Beamsley says:

    http://dailycaller.com/2017/04/03/susan-rice-ordered-spy-agencies-to-produce-detailed-spreadsheets-involving-trump/

    Any truth to this? If so what does it mean?

    Not sure how reliable the Daily Caller reports are going to be.

    Here’s a more balanced article form the Wash Post

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/04/04/susan-rice-isnt-a-smoking-gun-but-she-does-have-some-explaining-to-do/?utm_term=.3032ca1192c7

    There is precisely zero evidence that Rice used this information — assuming the reports are true — for anything other than her own official purposes or did anything unholy. Unmasking is not leaking, and as our own Karen DeYoung notes, Rice couldn’t have names unmasked without permission from the relevant intelligence agency — a system in place to prevent political abuses.

    and

    Second — and importantly — there is also still no evidence that any surveillance was targeted at Trump, as he has alleged in tweets. This doesn’t speak to that, either.

    And finally

    But at the same time, Rice’s own comments about this matter do lead to some legitimate questions.

    Those questions are why she denied knowing anything about Trump officials being caught up in a surveillance effort targeting Russians.

    She claims that she was just doing her job, and she well could be right.

    The larger issue is that the White House is trying to use questions about intelligence reporting to somehow deflect public’s attention from the fact that Trump campaign WERE talking with Russian officials about SOMETHING. Should we first focus on what the SOMETHING was before we try to determine if that SOMETHING was the result of some sort of domestic spying?

    There is a hint of desperation here in the how the White House and their right wing media supporters are handling this, but it clear appears to be working – at least for those who believe that Trump is the victim of some left-wing conspiracy to destroy his presidency.

  18. Jeff Beamsley says:

    BTW, the Daily Caller story is based on claims from a right-wing hack Joe diGenova. He is referred to in the article as a “former US Attorney”. That was 1988. What has he been doing since? Making a career for himself spewing conspiracy theories regarding Hillary Clinton and President Obama.

    If you look at mainstream sources, the only one who even references diGenova is the NYT. Here’s how they described his contributions.

    The link that Mr. Trump retweeted on Tuesday referred to a report in The Daily Caller, a conservative website, that quoted Joseph E. diGenova, a former United States attorney, saying that Ms. Rice ordered “detailed spreadsheets” of legal telephone calls involving Mr. Trump and his aides during the campaign.

    Mr. diGenova was quoted saying that the overheard conversations involved no illegal activity. “In short, the only apparent illegal activity was the unmasking of the people in the calls,” he said.

    The article did not say how Mr. diGenova, a Republican appointee who left his position as a prosecutor in 1988, knew this. But in her interview, Ms. Rice said it was not true.

  19. Jeff Beamsley says:

    BTW – New polls out this week have Trump hitting new lows. The RCP average is officially below 40%. The individual polls like Quinnipiac have him at 35%.

    That may be due to the fact that a majority of voters — 66 percent — believe President Obama deserves more credit than the current president when it comes to the current state of the economy. Sixty-four percent of Republicans agree.

    “President Donald Trump continues to struggle, even among his most loyal supports,” says Malloy. “Many of them would be hard pressed to see even a sliver of a silver lining in this troubling downward spiral.”

    Meanwhile, 70 percent of Americans disapprove of how Republicans in Congress are doing, up six points from two weeks ago, and 57 percent disapprove of the Democrats’ performance.

    The Senate gets the lowest approval among voters. The majority leader, Mitch McConnell, has a 14 percent approval rating, with 47 percent disapproving. Chuck Schumer, the Senate’s minority leader, has a 25 percent approval rating and a 36 percent disapproval rating.

    In the House, Speaker Paul Ryan garners a 28 percent favorability rating, with 52 percent disapproving of his performance. The House minority leader, Nancy Pelosi, doesn’t do much better, boasting a 30 percent favorability rating with 47 percent disapproving.

    and

    “As President Trump’s approval tanks, Congress, especially Republicans, follow right behind him,” said Malloy.

    If Republicans feel that Trump is damaging their ability to get re-elected, this is going to come apart very quickly.

  20. Jeff Beamsley says:

    BTW – Trump was very critical of the Obama policy in Syria.

    He now gets a chance to prove that he has a better idea. How is he going to react to Assad gassing children?

  21. Keith says:

    Let’s hope he doesn’t draw a red line. Lol.

  22. Jeff Beamsley says:

    The reality is that there isn’t a good strategy in Syria.

    Trump has suggested that he has a better idea. It appears that this idea is to ignore the brutality of Assad and just focus on eliminating ISIS.

    We’ll see how long this country is willing to see and read the accounts of children being gassed by Assad before they demand some explanation from Trump about what his plans are for the region.

    Unfortunately if his plans (if in fact he has any) include working more closely with Russia, he probably isn’t going to want to talk about it.

    More likely he is going to sit on his hands and do nothing. Which is exactly what he (and you) criticized Obama for doing.

  23. keith says:

    We shall see. And that will give you nothing to complain about.. lol 🙂

    Some how, some day we will reach a mutual understanding that has driven me to respond to your blog for 11 years now… That long?

    There are answers to many of our problems. Others there are not. The middle east being one of them in my humble opinion. The bible says –

    GEN 16:12 “He will be a wild donkey of a man; his hand will be against everyone and everyone’s hand against him, and he will live in hostility towards all his brothers.”

    I only said of Obama that it got worse under his watch and he gave up everything Bush had “won?” (Not being agruementive with the term “won?”

    As you know My attraction to your blog was because of the title “Spiritual Wickedness ……Progressive Christian.” Again, how could a Christian perspective be from any perspective except a Christian perspective, meaning why the adder “progressive.” Why not just Christian.Therein lies the problem. Now to politics, If Judge G is is filibustered then the Dems have truely lost any measure of governance I had hoped remained. He is highly qualified. Nothing wrong with him ZERO. in fact you might say impeccable.
    So the Repubs with go nuclear on them… If gradually fallen towards this from about 25 years now…

    Liberals never stop. They think they are alwasy correct. I’ve seen this for you. When they win the American people agree with their idea’s, when they lose they merely hope to discredit the republican winner, he cheated, he did this or that. It surely isn’t because the American peope disagreed with the liberals….

    I’m growing a bit tired of watching the same movie over and over. I want a new party… i’m only half kidding Sir!!!

    Meanwhile hope your well…

  24. Keith says:

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-06/cohn-backs-wall-street-split-of-lending-investment-banks

    I think we can both agree on this one.

    I’ve wanted this for a long time!!! Let’s Overturn this Clinton democrat era policy that led to the Great Recession.

  25. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Now to politics, If Judge G is is filibustered then the Dems have truely lost any measure of governance I had hoped remained. He is highly qualified. Nothing wrong with him ZERO. in fact you might say impeccable.
    So the Repubs with go nuclear on them… If gradually fallen towards this from about 25 years now…

    This has been a long time coming.

    The whole purpose of the filibuster was to provide the minority some opportunity to object when they felt the majority was overstepping their boundaries.

    Doesn’t matter whether Gorsuch in your mind met the criteria to be confirmed. What matters is whether the minority has a right to object if they can get enough votes to meet the filibuster standard. There was nothing wrong – ZERO with Merrick, but Republicans refused to even have a vote. Republicans misused the filibuster during the Obama administration by objecting to virtually every Obama nomination.

    What is going to happen now is that every senate election is going to get that much more contentious because a 51 vote majority is all that will be required in the future to confirm a judge to the supreme court.

    Liberals never stop. They think they are alwasy correct. I’ve seen this for you. When they win the American people agree with their idea’s, when they lose they merely hope to discredit the republican winner, he cheated, he did this or that. It surely isn’t because the American peope disagreed with the liberals….

    BOTH parties suffer from this.

    The difference in this election is that the majority of the people DID vote for the liberal candidate. Only our election rules prevented her from being elected. So please don’t suggest that the majority of voters rejected liberal values.

    Trump has refused to acknowledge this basic truth about the election. He has attempted to govern as if he won a majority of votes. Worse yet, he has criticized that majority who didn’t vote for him rather than embrace the fact that they may have legitimate reasons to oppose his policies. The result is that he lost roughly 60% of the voters within the first couple of week of his Presidency. He is in the process of losing another 20% of voters who were willing to give him an opportunity to deliver on his promised because HE HAS FAILED TO DELIVER ON HIS PROMISES.

    This is simple math, not a liberal conspiracy.

    The issues with the current President have nothing to do with election. Please stop trying to beat that drum. Trump won. No argument. Get over it.

    The issue with the current President is that he is historically unpopular with voters. His lack of support is due to four things. He doesn’t tell the truth. He is mired in several serious scandals and has refused to take responsibility for any of them. The policies that he has attempted to implement are deeply unpopular. He has failed to deliver on replacing Obamacare with something better, securing the border, keeping out Muslims, delivering on jobs, defeating ISIS, reforming the tax law, or growing the economy. Worse, we are now dealing with an aggressive Korea without any obvious plan AND Syria that has resumed gassing children.

    My issues at this point are NOT liberal versus conservative.

    My issues are that we are in dangerous waters. We have an ineffective and weak President. He doesn’t have the support or trust of a majority of the American people. He doesn’t even have the support of his own party. Whether this is his fault or the fault of others really doesn’t matter. What matters is what happens next.

    He can’t convince his own party to take a hard vote on healthcare. How can he convince the Chinese government to back a plan to put pressure on North Korea when the Chinese also know that he is weak? They are going to want concessions from him an a whole raft of things that they care about. He does not have a position of strength to bargain from. His only possible position is to convince the Chinese that he is crazy and might do something VERY RISKY if they don’t step up. But that is a VERY high risk strategy that could have serious repercussions regarding world stability.

    That would be bad enough but Syria just used poison gas on civilians again. The Russians claimed it was the rebels who gassed themselves. That means that Assad checked with Russia before using the gas. Why did they do it? Because they could. They are testing Trump in particular and the west in general to see how they will respond. They recognize that Trump is weak and may not be able to respond, even if he knew what he wanted to do. So this just puts more pressure on a weak President because he won’t be able to muster any support from Congress to act.

    If you think this is all just speculation, you should read this article. It describes why these are very dangerous times for both the US and Russia. It has everything to do with how Trump and Putin are currently running their respective countries.

    http://highline.huffingtonpost.com/articles/en/trump-russia-putin-military-crisis/

    Once news of an incident hits the internet, the pressure to respond becomes even harder to withstand. “The ability to recover from early missteps is greatly reduced,” Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has written. “The speed of war has changed, and the nature of these changes makes the global security environment even more unpredictable, dangerous, and unforgiving.”

    And so in the end, no matter how cool and unflappable the instincts of military men and women like Kevin Webster, what will smother the inevitable spark is steady, thoughtful leadership from within the White House and the Kremlin. A recognition that first reports may be wrong; a willingness to absorb new and perhaps unwelcome information; a thick skin to ward off insults and accusations; an acknowledgment of the limited value of threats and bluffs; and a willingness to recognize the core interests of the other side and a willingness to accept a face-saving solution. These qualities are not notably on display in either capital.

  26. Keith says:

    Correction. He only recently lost 50% of “likely voters.” You are referring to “polls” not voters or even “likely voters” please keep this difference in mind when discussing polls and numbers and Trumps support.

  27. Keith says:

    For the record I am truest disappointed the Senate reached this point. It’s a bad day in our history.

    It’s a red herring in bring up judge Merrick. The republicans held the senate. He was never going to be confirmed. The republicans were also quoting Chick Schumer and other dems that a last year President should not name the next one.

    No one has a problem with Jidge G based on the criteria state forth. The republicans did. It fillabuster either of President Obamas nominations. There is no one

  28. Keith says:

    who thinks he isn’t fit to serve. One of President Obamas is very very liberal and the republicans let her through. I think this is tragic.

  29. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Correction. He only recently lost 50% of “likely voters.” You are referring to “polls” not voters or even “likely voters” please keep this difference in mind when discussing polls and numbers and Trumps support.

    Keep telling yourself that if it makes you feel better.

    The historical fact, however, is that when the approval ratings polls (fewer then but certainly Gallup) got down into the low 30’s, the President lost control of the congress in the last election.

    Congress is aware of that too, so it doesn’t matter whether it the poll is likely voters or not. The polls pretty much all track each other and none of them are currently moving in a good direction for Trump. What happens if he takes military action against Syria and it doesn’t go well?

  30. Keith says:

    Trump has not failed to live up to his promises. And I would prefer to not have you responded in detail. If you think anyone believed, I never did, that he would repeal and replace in day one, then your just nuts. He’s a salesman. Everyone except those who favored Hillary and lottery HATE President Trump knows this. I lost that innocents when Bill Clinton sat on the 100th day and said “I just couldn’t do it.” This after campaigning that he would be focused like a laser beam on what he would accomplish in his first 100 days.

    Trump will still try and do what he said he would. Will he do it all? Impossible to say. Can anyone? Would Hillary have been able to do what she said she would with a republican house and senate? Would you call her a liar? Jeff you know better then this. Your calling Trump a failure after 70 days?

  31. Keith says:

    Well we know what Trump will do with Syria now.

  32. Keith says:

    I will ask you to grade me on my perception of media bias good sir.

    Today headline in the Washington Post.
    Ana Swanson
    “U.S. hiring slump led in March as employers added only 98,000 jobs.”
    Not an expiration grade headline.

    Further in the article it says unemployment fell from 4.7 to 4.5 while the broadest measure “discouraged workers” fell sharply to 8.9%

    It seems to my maybe bias minds eye that a Wash Post article during the Obama era would have highlighted the drop in unemployment while soft selling the jobs number. Thought?

  33. Keith says:

    Wages rose at a 2.7% clip labor participation up to 78.5%

  34. Jeff Beamsley says:

    “U.S. hiring slump led in March as employers added only 98,000 jobs.”
    Not an expiration grade headline.

    First of all, at newspapers anyway, the headline is written by someone other than the person who wrote the article.

    Second, this jobs number was half the number for February. It was also less than half the number of jobs expected for March (178K). So the headline writer was accurate in suggesting that this shortfall is in fact the news. Whether it indicates a longer term issue or is just a short term fluctuation driven by the contraction in the retail jobs market, we don’t know yet.

    Here’s a similar headline from a year ago where you could make the same complaint.

    U.S. employment slows as only 160,000 jobs created in April, joblessness rate at 5.0 percent

    There was doom and gloom for a couple of months and then we were back to 287,000 jobs in June and everything was fine again.

    Yes it was your biased eye.

  35. Keith says:

    Slows verse slumps ..
    One included a jobless rate. The other didn’t.

    Maybe it’s me.

  36. Jeff Beamsley says:

    BTW, the bottom line regarding Supreme Court justices is that the whole process has just become more politicized.

    Just as you say that there was no problem with Gorsuch, there was no problem with Merrick either. The only problem was that he was nominated by a Democratic president during a period of time when the Republicans held a majority in the Senate.

    So if that happens again the future, you’re saying that you have no problem with a Democratic majority in the Senate refusing to hold a vote on a Supreme Court justice who is otherwise qualified from an legal scholar perspective.

    That’s the basic problem.

  37. Jeff Beamsley says:

    Regarding Trump’s promises, I’m not holding him accountable for them. I’m perfectly happy that he has failed to deliver on them.

    What I’m pointing out is that there are roughly 22% of the voting population that are holding him accountable for what he promised. You may feel that is unfair, but it doesn’t matter because you aren’t part of that group.

    Each time he fails to deliver on his key set of promises – reforming healthcare, instituting new tougher immigration standards, “draining the swamp”, getting people back to work, and defeating ISIS – he loses the support of some of these people.

    He has already lost the support of Clinton voters.

    He has also lost the support of many independent voters who may have voted for third party candidates.

    Now he is losing the support those who voted for him, but who are now disappointed because he didn’t do the one thing that was most important to them.

    For example, his actions in Syria are going to cost him support of those who believed him when he said he wouldn’t get us involved there. Those are the hardline nationalists.

    There is talk that he is going to sideline Bannon and Preibus.

    Bannon has been their champion. If he loses influence and Trump starts down a more aggressive neo-con foreign policy path, you can figure that the “Brietbart” group is going to turn against Trump.

    His problem is that the floor of his support is pretty small (~22%). So he could easily get into the low 30’s if he fails to turn his administration around. And that’s the basic problem. He is in a position now where it is quickly becoming a zero sum game for him. He gains a little from one group and loses from another.

    There just aren’t a lot of paths open to him. If he becomes more moderate, he may gain back some of the mainline Republicans but he will lost his nationalist followers. If he embraces the Tea Party, he won’t be able to spend any more money and will disappoint those what want to see him make big infrastructure/job investments. If he starts doing deals with the Democrats, I’ll be more happy with him, but not enough to change my longer term opinion.

    Instead I think we are going to see him continue to flail around while the various scandals continue to drag him down until finally the Republican party can’t take it anymore and they look for ways to get rid of him.

    In the meantime, there is going to be another provocation from the Syria/Russia/Iran group. Let’s see how Trump responds to that one.

  38. Keith says:

    70 days in……..

    I thought last night when I read a article on avg ages of retiring Supremem court justices what if Justice Ginsberg retires in Feb of 2020. Will the republicans say a president shouldn’t nominate a justice in his last year. Or will they differniciate between “8th year” can run again, or 4th year up for reelection? Lol.

    Your constant looking at the polls reminds me of the many times you said doing President Obamas years that we are not run by polls. I think you should revisit this.

  39. Jeff Beamsley says:

    I thought last night when I read a article on avg ages of retiring Supremem court justices what if Justice Ginsberg retires in Feb of 2020. Will the republicans say a president shouldn’t nominate a justice in his last year. Or will they differniciate between “8th year” can run again, or 4th year up for reelection? Lol.

    I don’t think Ginsburg is going to retire with a Republican majority in the Senate, at least not if she can help it.

    Your constant looking at the polls reminds me of the many times you said doing President Obamas years that we are not run by polls. I think you should revisit this.

    If I recall, our conversations regarding polls had more to do with issues rather than job approval. Clearly the only poll that matters for a President is the election. The difference in this case is that Trump lost the national election “poll” by losing the popular vote.

    The other difference is that historically when job approval polls get into the low 30’s the sitting President’s party generally loses control of Congress or worse. President Obama’s lowest approval ratings were 38%. He still had bad midterm elections, but won re-election with a comfortable margin.

    My fascination with the polls is because I’m interested to see if history repeats itself.

    You’ve got a weak President who has been his own worst enemy. His White House can’t control their messaging. The press is out to find out anything they can about the President, because the President has refused to be transparent on virtually every issue. His party is split. There are significant foreign policy threats. The only good thing is the economy and significant majority of Americans believe that is the result of actions that Obama has taken and not Trump. He is in a no win situation there too, because there isn’t that much up left and when the economy goes down, he will take the blame. The Russian investigations will take months and every new revelation will cost him additional percentage points off his approval ratings. He’s not going to get a healthcare deal done. It’s going to take a long time to get tax reform.

    I keep asking what he is going to do to be able to become more popular and there seems little available to him.

    By November, we are going to be a year away from the 2018 elections. Sometime between now and then, those running the investigations are going to have to decide how far they are willing to go. If his approval ratings are still in the low 30’s, my prediction is that they will decide that they have to take Trump down in order to preserve their majority.

    So we wait and watch to see if history will repeat itself.

  40. Jeff Beamsley says:

    As I thought about it more, I realized that there IS a way out for Trump.

    He can transform himself into somebody else.

    He stops tweeting.

    He starts basing his policies on solid facts rather than conspiracy theories.

    He develops a clear message and consistent strategy for both domestic and international affairs.

    He makes peace with the media and began behaving like a grown-up regarding those who criticized him.

    He apologizes to all those he insulted in the past.

    He releases his taxes, sells off his holdings, and requires all those who work for him to do the same thing.

    Then I woke up. 🙂

    http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/first-read/trump-s-white-house-offers-mixed-messages-syria-n744556

  41. Keith says:

    Good post!!!! Now your humor is returning. Lol.

    Or, trump can get China to handle North Korea … a. If win for him if that happens. Then he meets with Vladimir and they make peace. Economy hums along at 2%… I’m guessing, GUESSING, G-U-E-S-S-I-N-G, 2 of the three happen ….

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