Thursday, October 13, 2016

Last Call For The Coming Av-Hill-Lanche

Less than four weeks to go and Trump is bailing totally on Virginia, a state he would definitely want to have in his column. Alas, the reality is Trump's collapse is accelerating towards a Clinton landslide, and actions speak louder than bravado.

Donald Trump's campaign is "pulling out of Virginia," a move that stunned staff in the battleground state, three sources with knowledge of the decision told NBC News. 
The decision came from Trump's headquarters in New York and was announced on a conference call late Wednesday that left some Republican Party operatives in the state blindsided. Two staffers directly involved in the GOP's efforts in Virginia confirmed the decision. 
The move to pull out of Virginia shows Trump is "running essentially a four state campaign," with the focus now shifting to battlegrounds critical to his chances in November: Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, and Ohio, a source with knowledge of the decision told NBC News.

If you're down to four states out of 50 in your ground game, you've lost and you just don't know it yet.   Even if Trump wins all four of those states, if he abandons every other state in play right now to Clinton (a list which now includes Georgia and Arizona and Utah) he still loses on electoral votes.

Trump's former Virginia state chairman, Corey Stewart, who was recently fired by the Trump campaign for organizing a protest outside Republican National Committee headquarters, called the move "totally premature." 
Stewart was not on the conference call, but said he was informed by a staffer who was. 
"I think it's totally premature for the campaign to be pulling out of Virginia after so much work and all the hundreds ... of hours of volunteer time and thousands and thousands of volunteers," Stewart said. "The only thing the campaign had to do was spend money on an ad campaign and it would have been competitive ... I'm just disgusted." 
"It's fair to say money was allocated," one source said of the Virginia operation, declining to confirm what the specific amount allocated was. "But now they're looking to move personnel to a state that some people think is more important."

Clinton now has a 10 point lead in Pennsylvania.  Virginia was Trump's only other real path to the White House, and that was if he kept NC. FL and Ohio.  Without either, he's done.

I'm still betting that Trump's collapse is so total that Clinton approaches 400 EVs, but even if Trump manages to hold on to Georgia and Arizona and other second-tier states like Missouri and South Carolina he still gets crushed with Clinton getting around 350 EVs. Clinton has a lot of paths to 270. Trump has precisely one without Virginia, and it's running the table on all four of those states he's concentrating on and then keeping every other state he has to limp just over the finish line.

He will not win all four.  He's done, he just hasn't admitted it yet.

BridgeGate Over Troubled Water, Con't

Well folks, we've reached the point of Chris Christie Bridgegate saga where the GOP governor of New Jersey, failed presidential hopeful and Trump errand boy for McDonald's runs is now in a heap of serious legal trouble.

A judge has found probable cause for a complaint of official misconduct against Gov. Chris Christie related to the George Washington Bridge lane closures. 
The case now goes to the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office, which will decide whether to bring the issue to a grand jury for possible indictment. 
There was no immediate comment from Acting Bergen County Prosecutor Gurbir Grewal. Grewal was appointed to the position by Christie in January when John Molinelli retired. The governor nominated him to permanently retain the position last month, and it wasn't immediately clear if Grewal would recuse himself from the case due to the potential perception of conflict of interest.
Let's understand that a sitting governor is facing a possible indictment, and if there were somehow any last shreds of Christie's future political aspirations left, after being reduced to a national punchline and then deciding his best course of action was hitching his wagon to the Trump Train, they just died screaming in molten lava this morning.

How far the Village's favorite son has fallen.

Last Flight Out Of Bevinstan

Back in April, Kentucky GOP Gov. Matt Bevin vetoed driver's licence change legislation that would have brought the state in federal compliance with the REAL ID act.  Now we find out Kentuckians won't be able to use their driver's licenses to board airplanes starting in January 2018, as the federal government is telling Bevin no more extensions and to fix it or else.

The federal government has denied Kentucky's request for a one-year extension that would have given the state more time to work toward complying with security regulations for driver's licenses and other kinds of identification. 
Kentucky's prior extension expired Monday, and the state Transportation Cabinet announced Wednesday that the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security denied the commonwealth's request for another one. The REAL ID law, which Kentucky hasn't complied with yet, was approved by Congress in 2005 and resulted in the establishment of new identification-related security standards. 
Most Kentucky residents won't be affected by Homeland Security's denial right away. Starting in January, however, Kentuckians won't be able to enter some secure federal facilities, such as nuclear power plants and military installations, by flashing their state-issued driver's licenses and ID cards. 
But the biggest impact won't be felt until January 2018, when Kentucky driver's licenses will no longer be accepted by the Transportation Security Administration. People may have to show an alternative form of ID, such as a passport, to board domestic flights if the state hasn't complied with REAL ID regulations by then.

Remember, this is something that the state legislature already voted to fix, but Bevin said no.

The state legislature already approved a bill that would have helped Kentucky meet the federal government's requirements earlier this year. But Gov. Matt Bevin, who initially supported the proposal, vetoed it after people across the political spectrum raised concerns about the REAL ID issue, said John-Mark Hack, the state Department of Vehicle Regulation's commissioner. The transportation cabinet is planning public meetings where people will be able to learn more about the regulations and offer their perspectives. 
Hack expressed confidence Wednesday in the state's ability to address the issues Homeland Security has raised by January 2018, when Kentuckians' ability to fly would be affected. 
Hack pointed out that Bevin's administration "inherited this task" from former Gov. Steve Beshear's own administration, which never brought the state into compliance with the REAL ID law. He also said these federal regulations did not appear to be a high priority for the administrations of President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush, given the law's "start and stop" implementation at the federal level over the years.

It's cute that Mr. Hack there (appropriate) is blaming everyone but Gov. Bevin for vetoing the bill that would have resolved this problem months ago, but that's Bevinstan for you.

Going to need to apply for a passport while I still can get one, I guess.


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