Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Last Call For Close But No Cigar...Yet

It looks like James Thompson will go down to defeat, but a surprisingly close one, in Kansas's 4th, in a district where Republican Ron Estes should have won by 20 points.  Thompson looks like his loss will be within single digits, which, while it means that Estes will keep the seat for the GOP, means that the honeymoon for Trump among Republicans is now officially over.

Reminder that this is a R+15 district, blood red and just about as safe as they come, and Thompson looks to have cut that margin in half, if not by two-thirds. Yes, it's a special election and anything goes, but if I were Republicans in Georgia right now in the 6th? I'd be scared out of my ever-loving mind.

Also keep in mind Trump won this district by almost 30 points in November.  It looks like today the GOP will carry it by only 7 or 8.  For this to happen within the first 100 days of a presidential election of a Republican is mind-blowing.  Trump isnt just an albatross, he's well past millstone or even anvil, we're talking black hole.

This district never should have been in play, and if anything within say, R+10 is viable, that's literally dozens of seats that the Dems have a shot at.  Even winning a majority of GOP seats that are R+6 or less would give the Dems the House back, and it could be a 2010-level wave that would devastate the GOP.

So, while Thompson won't be a winner, I'm betting a lot of other Dems will be, starting with Jon Ossoff next week in Georgia.

We'll see.

Speaker Of Bedeviled And He Shall Appear

Republicans are beginning to voice their displeasure with their leadership, and while Mitch McConnell may have scored a win with Neil Gorsuch's confirmation to the Supreme Court, House Speaker Paul Ryan has nothing but failure on his scorecard in 2017, and his own party isn't letting him forget the fact.

Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) on Monday suggested that House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) may need to be replaced to deal with the dysfunction in Washington. 
"We need either a change in direction from this Speaker, or we need a new speaker," Amash said during a town hall on Monday in response to a question about gridlock in Washington, according to CNN. 
He said Ryan should be replaced with someone who is "nonpartisan." 
The comments come after a top White House aide earlier this month sent a tweet calling for a primary challenge to Amash, a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus who opposed the House GOP's healthcare bill last month.

".@realDonaldTrump is bringing auto plants & jobs back to Michigan. @justinamash is a big liability.#TrumpTrain, defeat him in primary," Dan Scavino tweeted. 
Amash responded to the tweet, saying the Trump administration and establishment have "merged into #Trumpstablishment." 
"Same old agenda: Attack conservatives, libertarians & independent thinkers," Amash tweeted earlier this month.

Twitter beef between Republicans aside, the GOP is devolving (even further than they have with Trump now in charge) from smug frat boys plotting hazing rituals for Americans into whiny high school kids screaming over student council meetings.  I'm not sure how Paul Ryan ever got the moniker of policy wonk, but the guy's a fraud, and now that Boehner's enjoying his retirement puttering around the many golf courses in the Cincinnati area, Ryan's ineptness is showing daily.

Should safe Republican House seats start falling to Team Blue in upcoming special elections, then expect another revolt on the Hill.

No Static At All

The Gang That Couldn't Executive Branch Straight is quickly approaching the "First 100 days" milestone and they have precisely nothing to show for it so far other than disaster, despair and a lingering cloud of Russian interference.  I think they'll need more than a "rebranding" effort to save them, but that's where we are right now.

For a president who often begins and ends his days imbibing cable news, the burden has fallen heavily on a press team that recognizes how well they sell Trump’s early tenure in the media will likely color the president’s appetite for an internal shake-up. 
That was the backdrop for a tense planning session for the 100-day mark last week. 
More than 30 Trump staffers piled into a conference room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building adjoining the White House, according to a half-dozen attendees who described the Tuesday meeting. 
Mike Dubke, Trump’s communications director, and his deputy, Jessica Ditto, kicked off the discussion of how to package Trump’s tumultuous first 100 days by pitching the need for a “rebranding” to get Trump back on track. 
“I think the president’s head would explode if he heard that,” one of the White House officials present said. 
Staffers, including counselor Kellyanne Conway, were broken into three groups, complete with whiteboards, markers and giant butcher-block-type paper to brainstorm lists of early successes. One group worked in the hallway. 
“It made me feel like I was back in 5th grade,” complained another White House aide who was there. “That’s the best way I could describe it.” 
Dubke, who did not work on the campaign, told the assembled aides that international affairs would present a messaging challenge because the president lacks a coherent foreign policy. Three days later, Trump would order missile strikes in Syria in a reversal of years of previous opposition to such intervention. 
“There is no Trump doctrine,” Dubke declared. 
Some in the room were stunned by the remark. 
“It rubbed people the wrong way because on the campaign we were pretty clear about what he wanted to do,” said a third White House official in the room, “He was elected on a vision of America First. America First is the Trump doctrine.” 
One of the administration officials lamented, “We’ve got a comms team supposedly articulating the president’s message [that] does not appear to understand the president’s message.”

If the Trumpies think the problem is the White House communications team and not Trump himself and the people he's chosen to surround himself with, well no amount of whiteboarding, rebranding or message discipline is going to help.

You voted for America's executive branch to be run like a business, America, and you got it.  You also elected a CEO who has declared bankruptcy numerous times to boot.  Surprise!

Folks, nothing's going to rescue Trump from being the worst president in modern US history, and there may not be too much of an America left after we get rid of him.


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