Thursday, August 25, 2016

In Which Zandar Answers Your Burning Questions

Clare Malone at Five Thirty Eight Politics asks:

Can Kellyanne Conway Get Donald Trump To Stop Alienating Women?

Short answer: No.

But it’s not just Trump who is on message in the battle to win back women voters — it’s Conway herself. 
A highly visible television presence already, she projects calm in a campaign marked by bluster and brash comments so far off the cuff as to be in the armpit. In a campaign that has earned its keep through television, Conway’s presence on nearly every political program of late seems as much a strategy as Trump’s softening rhetoric on the stump. Paul Manafort, in his pinstripes and power ties, was an Old Spice television presence, not doing much to complicate the perception that the Trump team was filled with anything other than middle-aged men. 
This is not to say that Conway is without her barbs. “You think you would know who Hillary Clinton is if she wasn’t married to Bill Clinton?” she said in a recently released clip from an upcoming documentary. She told the same documentary crew that many live polls were miscalculating Trump support because of stigma. “It’s become socially desirable, especially if you’re a college-educated person in the U.S., to say that you’re against Donald Trump,” she said. That claim is dubious at best. 
But Conway often mentions that she is a mother to “four young children” as she works through her television talking points. Conway says she doesn’t like personal insults. She seems at times like a one-woman chorus chanting “one of us, one of us” at college-educated and married women who might just be tuning in. “Big fan of yours,” Megyn Kelly told Conway at the end of an interview with her earlier this week. 
“It’s tough to be a woman in politics on either side of the aisle,” Celinda Lake, Conway’s co-author, told me. “She’s very smart about how she negotiates that.” Lake, who said Conway is “very smart about power and access,” will undoubtedly be a force trying to shape Trump behind the scenes, but that her utility as a public-facing campaign entity is undeniable. 
“Unlike the Breitbart guy, she’s not going to cause you any trouble,” Lake said, a reference to Bannon. 
The only question lingering around Conway is a simple one, Lake said. 
“Will Donald Trump really listen to her?”

Long answer:

“If someone shows you who they really are, believe them.”
-- Maya Angelou

Donald Trump has spent years showing us who he really is, and you think he's going to change now?

No. That would explain today's brutal Quinnipiac Universrity poll now showing Clinton up nationally by double digits.

In the battle of the unloved presidential candidates, Democrat Hillary Clinton tops the magical 50 percent mark among American likely voters, leading Republican Donald Trump 51 - 41 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University National poll released today.

When third party candidates are added to the mix, Clinton gets 45 percent with Trump at 38 percent, Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson at 10 percent and Green Party candidate Jill Stein at 4 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll finds. This survey of likely voters can not be compared with results of earlier surveys of registered voters.

Women and non-white voters propel Clinton in the head-to-head matchup. Women back her 60 - 36 percent. Men back Trump 48 - 42 percent. White voters back Trump 52 - 41 percent. Non-white voters back Clinton 77 - 15 percent.

Also in that same poll, 90% of likely voters say they have made up their mind who they will vote for, so odds are extremely good that any changes Conway will bring to the Trump campaign are far too little and far too late.

"We are starting to hear the faint rumblings of a Hillary Clinton landslide as her 10-point lead is further proof that Donald Trump is in a downward spiral as the clock ticks," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"Trump's missteps, stumbles and gaffes seem to outweigh Clinton's shaky trust status and perceived shady dealings. Wow, is there any light at the end of this dark and depressing chapter in American politics?"

Tick. Tick. Boom.

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