ChrisWeigant.com

Will Democrats Work With Trump? It Depends...

[ Posted Tuesday, March 28th, 2017 – 17:05 UTC ]

There's a meme running around inside the Beltway this week concerning the likelihood of Democrats in Congress working with Donald Trump to get some legislation passed. However, much of the gossiping ignores one key question, because so far the speculation has mostly been focused on: "Will they or won't they work together, and what will it mean politically for both?" That's a valid thing to ponder, but the essential part most of this speculation misses is that any collaboration between the two is going to heavily depend on the substance of the issue, and precisely what's being proposed. Substance matters, in other words, even if it is more fun to wonder what the political fallout may be.

Donald Trump started this speculation in his response to the utter failure of Ryancare to even pass the House of Representatives. More interestingly, though, were hints that some of the moderate Republicans in the House may also be considering working with Democrats on legislation, in order to marginalize the Tea Partiers in the Freedom Caucus, who only seem to be able to say "No." Taken together, does this mean a thaw in relations between the two parties? Well, that's overstating the case for now, but the reason it's so tantalizing is that even rumors of possibly working together haven't been heard in D.C. in quite some time.

Trump may or may not prove amenable to working with Democrats. But in the end, he might be much more willing to do so than other Republicans, since Trump isn't much of an ideologue on many subjects. But it's worth pointing out that Trump isn't exactly reaching out to Democrats at the moment, instead he's trying to shift all the blame for Ryancare's untimely demise onto Democrats (which is pretty laughable, but, hey, that's politics for you). In the entire Ryancare debate, Trump didn't reach out to a single Democrat in Congress, and he hasn't personally reached out to any since it fell apart last Friday. In Trump's mind, Democrats are going to crawl to him, begging for changes in Obamacare, because he has convinced himself the whole thing is going to "explode," possibly by next Tuesday. Democrats (and independent analysts) don't see things in quite the same dire terms, to put it mildly. Still, political rhetoric aside, Democrats could use this as an opportunity to move Trump away from the more radical elements within his own party.

As I said, this is where the Washington rumor-mill kicks into full speed, wondering whether helping Trump would be a good thing for Democrats politically or not heading into the 2018 elections. I'll leave most of that for others, because what I find more interesting is not how it'll affect Democratic chances in the midterms, but instead how such collaboration might happen, and what could be accomplished.

There are two very large areas outside of healthcare reform where Donald Trump and Democrats might be able to hammer out some sort of deal in the next few months, if the political will to bargain did exist on both sides. The first is infrastructure, and the second is the budget. Well, perhaps I've got that backwards, since the budget will be the first of these on the calendar.

The next big fight in Congress is going to be over yet another "continuing resolution" to keep the government funded. The last of these deals was cut before the election season, but it runs out on April 29th. So Congress has a deadline to act. Unlike the Ryancare debate's false deadline, this is a real one with real consequences. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell have to get something passed and signed by Trump by the end of the month, or else we're going to have another government shutdown on our hands.

As usual, the Tea Partiers will be the main sticking point on the Republican side. No matter what their demands turn out to be, there's an excellent chance that they will be so extreme that the rest of the Republicans won't be willing to go along with them. This has been a recurring pattern, and there's no reason to believe this time is going to be any different. If the Freedom Caucus isn't going to back Paul Ryan, however, this is going to force him to round up some Democratic votes to get any continuing budget bill passed.

So what would entice Democrats to vote for a bill? Chuck Schumer helpfully outlined the things that would be deal-killers for Democrats in an interview last Sunday. Democrats will be demanding three broad things, all of which have been agreed to in the past by Republicans in order to get budget bills passed. First, both parties will have to agree to ignore the sequester. Second, for Democrats to vote for a budget, there must be parity between extra spending for the military and for domestic programs. And last but not least, there must be no Republican ideological "poison pills" in the bill, which Democrats could never vote for (like, for instance, defunding Planned Parenthood). Again, these have been the broad outlines of previous budget deals, so nothing in that list is new or "too much to ask."

The first of these isn't all that controversial, since nobody really wanted the sequester to ever actually happen, on either side of the aisle. So agreeing to set it aside will be the easiest thing to achieve on the list. But when the parties agree to go above the sequester spending limits, every dollar above the limit for the Pentagon must be matched with the same amount of domestic spending. That is, to put it mildly, not what Donald Trump's budget has in mind, so there may be a pretty big battle over this one. And Schumer didn't say what exactly will be on the deal-breaking "no poison pill" list for Democrats, so there's plenty of room for disagreement there as well. Will the border wall money be so opposed by Democrats that they'll kill a continuing resolution over it? It's impossible to say, at this point, but it could be.

Most of this bargaining will take place in Congress, it's worth pointing out. The bill they've got to pass deals with the current year's budget, and both Trump and the Republicans in Congress are much more concerned over next year's budget, which hasn't been written yet. So that's where the big battle is going to take place, but it'll happen later in the year, not next month. Trump will likely sign just about anything Congress agrees to in April, just to move on to other things on his agenda.

The next big legislative push the Republicans are planning after April is "tax reform." This is going to be incredibly contentious within the Republican caucus for many reasons, so the Democrats may decide to just sit this one out and let Paul Ryan try to corral his caucus once again. The only real thing Trump and the Democrats might agree upon in this debate is removing the "carried interest loophole" that allows hedge fund managers to pay half the income taxes everyone else does. Trump made a big deal of this very early in his campaign, so perhaps this will emerge as part of the tax reform package. As for the rest of it, which will consist of gargantuan tax breaks for the top one percent and corporations, few Democrats will likely support the Republican plan.

If the Trump White House truly does become interested in working with Democrats, the obvious issue to work on would be infrastructure. Trump promised to "rebuild America" with massive spending on airports, roads, bridges, and all the rest of it. However, since he got elected, the plan that emerged is not going to adequately do this at all. It is instead a plan to hand out big tax breaks for companies that rebuild something (a road, a bridge) and then allow them to charge tolls for its use. That's not exactly something most Democrats could support. But there may be some middle ground, since spending on infrastructure has increasingly been a big Democratic issue. It used to be a big bipartisan issue, but with the end of earmarks has fallen into disfavor with Republicans (who hate all government spending, on general principles). But Trump and congressional Democrats could conceivably strike a bargain, at some point.

On Obamacare, Democrats have a real opportunity. Schumer also outlined what it would take for Democrats to work with Republicans on healthcare reform. First and foremost, stop with the "repeal" talk. Democrats are never going to vote for anything sold to the public as "Obamacare repeal," period. Republicans must agree to this before any other negotiations even begin. Because, as Schumer pointed out, the only way Democrats are going to get to the table is if both sides are genuinely interested in making things better, not worse. As Ryancare proved, making things worse is not actually politically popular with the public. But if Trump and the Republicans would agree to work towards making Obamacare better, then we'd actually have the chance of bipartisanship.

Can any of these efforts actually work? That's hard to say. It would require moderate Republicans to get on board and negotiate a fair deal between the two parties' positions. That's a pretty big thing to ask, these days. Are enough House Republicans disgusted enough with the antics of the Tea Party to sit down and work out some compromises with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer? Or are we going to have to see the Tea Party hijack the House a few more times before that is even a possibility?

And to close on, let's examine the politics. Most of the Beltway speculation about political ups and downs should this collaboration take place misses two big things. The first is that the Republicans who worked with the Democrats could be on very thin ice with their own voters for doing so. Democrats alone can't pass anything in either house of Congress -- some Republican votes will be necessary. If the extremists in the GOP are using words such as "traitor" and "RINO" against them (as seems entirely likely), will such Republicans still vote for a compromise bill? This might be more likely on the budget bills, since they have a built-in deadline, but on the other issues it'd be politically tougher for moderate Republicans.

The second misread of the politics is that all the pundits are assuming that Democratic voters see things as a horserace. Pundits love political horseraces, but the public doesn't always use that lens. Right now it is being framed as: "Will Democrats help Donald Trump get a big legislative win, or are they more inclined not to help him out politically to maximize the damage to him?" Another flavor of this is: "Are Democratic voters so anti-Trump that they'll punish any Democrat who works with him?" But most Democratic voters have a little more subtlety than that. It's not the politics, it's the issue, to put this another way. If, for instance, Bernie Sanders put together a public-option, Medicare-for-all bill that fixed many of the flaws of Obamacare, and then got Trump to back it because it would fulfill most of Trump's campaign promises on the issue, how would the average Democratic voter see that? My guess is that they'd see it as a Democratic legislative victory (or even a Sanders legislative victory), rather than one for Trump. "We got Trump to come around to our point of view" is how Democratic politicians would be framing the issue for the voters. A victory for Democrats, not for Trump.

Whether this is convincing or not to the voters will depend on the issue, and on the details. Because once you get beyond the Beltway, people are a lot more pragmatic. They want to see solid results, not just endless political posturing. If the Democrats can band together with moderate congressional Republicans and sway Donald Trump to support Democratic values and ideas, that will be what counts the most among Democratic voters. It would also tend to weaken the Republican Party as a whole, because on any compromise it'll plainly show that Republicans cannot agree among themselves -- not without the Democrats leading the way. That's not a bad thing for the Democratic Party either, in fact that's a positive thing to show the voters. I have no idea what the chances are for any collaboration on Capitol Hill in the next few months, but I do think some of the Washington conventional wisdom on it isn't digging deeply enough into how voters would see it. Because it would depend heavily on exactly what got accomplished.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

58 Comments on “Will Democrats Work With Trump? It Depends...”

  1. [1] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    "Will they or won't they work together, and what will it mean politically for both?" That's a valid thing to ponder, but the essential part most of this speculation misses is that any collaboration between the two is going to heavily depend on the substance of the issue, and precisely what's being proposed.

    There was a time, before the 2008 election, that I believed most members of Congress voted on legislation based on its substance and the needs of their constituents. That belief was dashed when the GOP voted against renewing the Zagruder Bill - which covered the medical expenses of those who became seriously ill from cleaning the 9/11 attack sites. The excuses they gave for their opposition made no sense at the time.

    Months later, when the GOP's plan to become the "Party of No" was exposed, it became clear just how low they had sunk when they would openly say things like,

    "If he was for it, we had to be against it!"

    I just do not see Democrats be willing to risk putting their constituents best interests on the back burner in favor of party politics! For one, I think Democrats' constituents are better informed for the most part. Hearing Republicans brag about voting against this country's best interests just to prevent Obama from getting the credit for signing it into law was disgusting.

  2. [2] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    since the "democrats working with trump" narrative is on television, there is a chance he'll see it there and think it's a good idea. we already know that donald doesn't really care about the policy details, so it sounds like an opportunity to me.

    JL

  3. [3] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    Interesting on the pison pills.

    The Boarder wall is already being queued up for lots of money to be spent. Here is a little IDIQ tidbit worth up to
    $300,000,000 with a minimum of $200,00 to $500,000 just for the prototypes. and that is before the design and demolition charges....

    https://www.fbo.gov/index?s=opportunity&mode=form&id=8a3ce59525aa0a6ea153bb400f3028da&tab=core&_cview=1

  4. [4] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    And here is another, also worth up to $300,000,000. same minimums as before.

    https://www.fbo.gov/index?s=opportunity&mode=form&id=89def17de436dd5dc288bcac7ae1ed75&tab=core&_cview=1

    This thing is going to turn into a boondoggle quick. Since the government has moved to this whole design and build competition model it has done nothing but reward crappy contractors for crappy products while wasting tax payer dollars.

    I can see where almost a billion dollars hidden in a CR can make for a good poison pill, especially considering that we have yet to see a fleshed out budget plan...

    If the Dems were smart one of the conditions for " working it out" would be to see the budget footprint for the upcoming fiscal year before they start negotiating. Unfortunately, I doubt that anyone in DC will think of that since it makes to much sense and hearkens back to the days of working together.

  5. [5] 
    Kick wrote:

    Trump says he expects a health care deal soon

    Trump is hosting a reception for senators and their spouses at the White House. It attracted both Republicans and Democrats.

    He says the bipartisan crowd is “a very good thing” and predicts a deal on health care will happen “very quickly.”

    He says: “I know that we’re all going to make a deal on health care. And that’s such an easy one.”

    Trump also sees potential for working with Democrats on other issues like infrastructure.

    He talks about how great things are going in Iraq and says: "We're doing very well in Iraq." He says "our soldiers are fighting and fighting like never before."

    _____________________

    So see, everybody? No worries. PT insists "our soldiers are fighting like never before" in Iraq and says a health care deal will be "such an easy one" and will happen "very quickly."

    And this all happened tonight... TONIGHT!

  6. [6] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    [5] Kick

    And this all happened tonight... TONIGHT!

    "To-daaaaaay, all day I had the feeling
    A miracle would happen --
    I know now I was right."

  7. [7] 
    michale wrote:

    Trump may or may not prove amenable to working with Democrats. But in the end, he might be much more willing to do so than other Republicans, since Trump isn't much of an ideologue on many subjects.

    Yep, Yep.. I have been saying that since Day One..

    Nice ta have such high level support. :D

    I noticed your entire commentary ignored one relevant aspect..

    The Tea-Party-esque elements within the Democrat Party who will refuse to work with President Trump on ANYTHING, regardless of how good it is for their country...

    They are going to be the problem here..

  8. [8] 
    michale wrote:

    I just do not see Democrats be willing to risk putting their constituents best interests on the back burner in favor of party politics!

    HA!!!

    That wins the DELUSIONAL STATEMENT OF THE YEAR AWARD

    Apparently, you missed the ENTIRE 2016 Presidential Election which consisted of NOTHING BUT the Democrats putting their constituents' best interests on the back burner in favor of Party politics.

    I mean, honestly.. What Party nominates a TOTALLY unelectable candidate *SOLELY* because it's "her turn"...???

  9. [9] 
    michale wrote:

    From yesterday's commentary when this idea was floated.. :D

    I would actually LOVE to see that..

    Not only because it would actually get things done for this country, but as an added bonus, it would tie the vast majority of Weigantians in knots!! :D

    "TRUMP IS EVIL!!! TRUMP IS HITLER!!!! TRUMP IS..... whaaa?? He is working WITH Democrats!!??? errr.. uh... TRUMP IS AWESOME!!!!! TRUMP IS OBAMA!!!!"

    It's gonna be a hoot!! :D

    Political Partys. :^/

    The worst thing that has happened to this country ever....

  10. [10] 
    michale wrote:

    Basically, Political Partys are nothing but elementary school level NO-GIRLS/NO-BOYS clubs...

    Sanctioned and accepted bigotry...

    Nothing more....

  11. [11] 
    Kick wrote:

    Charles Brown, Esq. [6]

    "To-daaaaaay, all day I had the feeling
    A miracle would happen --
    I know now I was right."

    For here you are
    And what was just a world is a star
    To-niiiiiight!

    *LOL* :)

  12. [12] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Trump will not work with Democrats, but he may pretend to to gain a bargaining chip with Republicans.
    The recent healthcare bill was a show for their base like all the repeal attempts they knew wouldn't pass and to give the Democrats something to rally against to keep their base in the fold.
    The plan is to keep chipping away at Obamacare until it collapses. This will not be hard as Obamacare was just putting some bandages on a compound fracture- it stops or slows the immediate bleeding but does not address the real problem.
    The title should have been:
    "Whether or not Trump works with Democrats- it REQUIRES Depends"
    subtitle:...because all you're going to get from either party is a load of shit.

  13. [13] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Apparently, you missed the ENTIRE 2016 Presidential Election which consisted of NOTHING BUT the Democrats putting their constituents' best interests on the back burner in favor of Party politics.

    I mean, honestly.. What Party nominates a TOTALLY unelectable candidate *SOLELY* because it's "her turn"...???

    This wins the STUPIDEST REPLY award. What actions were against their constituents' best interests? The party nominated Clinton because she won the primary election. Hell, Trump still can't stand the fact that she got over 3 million more votes than he did. So pitiful that he tries to come up with excuses to explain how he could win when he was not as popular as she was to AMERICANS.

  14. [14] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    The fact that we have gotten to the point that we do not expect our Congress and the President to work together to produce legislation that benefits the majority of Americans is really sad.

    What's worse, the divide is not over philosophical differences, it's become solely based on identity. We saw 8 years of Republicans voting against legislation that they had supported in the past. The substance of the legislation was not what they opposed; it was who would get the credit for signing it into law that caused them to reject it!

  15. [15] 
    michale wrote:

    The party nominated Clinton because she won the primary election.

    No.. The Party ANNOINTED NOT-45 because it was her turn...

    Or, did you miss the whole DNC-had-their-thumb-on-the-scales bit??

    Hell, Trump still can't stand the fact that she got over 3 million more votes than he did.

    The FACT that all those votes were from California only probably pleases President Trump to no end.. :D

    So pitiful that he tries to come up with excuses to explain how he could win when he was not as popular as she was to AMERICANS.

    CALIFORNIANS... Not Americans... Californians..

    There is obviously a difference :D

    What's worse, the divide is not over philosophical differences, it's become solely based on identity.

    Complete and utter agreement..

    Identity politics really REALLY suck...

    We saw 8 years of Republicans voting against legislation that they had supported in the past. The substance of the legislation was not what they opposed; it was who would get the credit for signing it into law that caused them to reject it!

    And we're going to see 8 years of Democrats doing the EXACT same thing..

    The ONLY difference is NOW, ya'all will support that..

  16. [16] 
    Paula wrote:

    This: http://whowhatwhy.org/2017/03/27/fbi-cant-tell-trump-russia/

    However, a two-month WhoWhatWhy investigation has revealed an important reason the Bureau may be facing undisclosed obstacles to revealing what it knows to the public or to lawmakers.

    Our investigation also may explain why the FBI, which was very public about its probe of Hillary Clinton’s emails, never disclosed its investigation of the Trump campaign prior to the election, even though we now know that it commenced last July.

    Such publicity could have exposed a high-value, long-running FBI operation against an organized crime network headquartered in the former Soviet Union. That operation depended on a convicted criminal who for years was closely connected with Trump, working with him in Trump Tower — while constantly informing for the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ), and being legally protected by them.

  17. [17] 
    altohone wrote:

    Listen
    delayed response to comment 166 from FTP

    I asked you a very straightforward question and you wrote a page length response in which you avoided answering it.
    I don't get the reluctance.

    Look, I welcome your input, but you can be a wallflower or you can get in the mosh pit.
    Answer the question if you want to dance.
    Don't make me get all Liz on you.

    As for the survey question about using different tactics in different neighborhoods and the response by police officers, your interpretation which attempts to portray their answers in the most favorable light is one possible way of looking at it, but since the survey didn't ask the obvious follow up question to clarify, there isn't any evidence that your interpretation actually reflects what the surveyed police meant. Other, not so favorable interpretations are also possible (and the evidence we see regularly suggests it is the more likely possibility)... and in case you missed it, our resident trumpling and former LEO also chimed in with a comment to my discussion with goode trickle that made it abundantly clear that it wasn't about language barriers or residents on a given block with a record of threatening police in his eyes.

    I would hope you would at least be willing to admit the other possibilities exist... and to be clear, I am not trying to disparage your husband, just discuss realty.

    A

  18. [18] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    As for the soup of the day, I think both you and nypoet are overestimating the Trumpon.

    I'm not saying it's impossible, just unlikely.
    I mean, aren't we essentially back to the "becoming presidential" discussion?

    It should happen, it could happen, but the odds of it actually happening are slim.
    If there is evidence that suggests otherwise, I missed it.

    A

  19. [19] 
    altohone wrote:

    Kick
    5

    Nice.
    I dare say you would have made a good punk.

    BTW, thanks for posting that link the other day.

    A

  20. [20] 
    altohone wrote:

    Kick
    19

    On second thought, it's never too late.
    I think you already have the combat boots... I'd be happy to share a list of my favorite songs/bands.

    A

  21. [21] 
    Kick wrote:

    michale [210] {moved forward}

    As long as ya'all let Paula get away with labeling ALL Trumpers and/or ALL Republicans as racist, deplorables or whatever, the evidence that supports the political bigotry is conclusive..

    You're on a lefty chat board whining like a moron about political bigotry because the lefty or left-leaning posters aren't posting to suit your tastes. You're like the fool who jumped into the water and then complained that he got wet. Were you expecting love, peace, and harmony toward the right on a lefty chat board? That's your problem, not Paula's. :)

    Paula posts articles about what some dumb ass Trumpers do and says "Trumpers." When you follow her links, you find information about what either one or a few Trumpers did. If you're reading more into it than that, then you are the one with the problem.

    You don't let me get away with labeling all of the Left...

    Yet you DO let her get away with labeling ALL of the Right or ALL of Trump supporters..

    She's a lefty on a lefty political chat board and water is indeed wet. It's not rocket science, Michale. Meanwhile, you're posting bullshit every day in trolling fashion and using terms like "Left Whinery" in nearly every post.

    Ergo, the *ONLY* conclusion that fits all the facts is that it's Party/Political bigotry at work...

    It's a lefty chat board and water is wet.

    I am open to other suggestions.. But they need to be supported by FACTS... Verifiable and conclusive FACTS....

    Got any??

    Here's a fact. Only a moron would come to a lefty chat board and expect them to tailor their commentary to suit his right-wing rhetoric.

    I have an idea. Think of yourself as visiting Britain. You land at the airport and make your way to your rental car, looking like a total tourist and wearing your stupid hat with the stupid words on it that screams "I'm Not British." You get in your car -- the wheel is on the wrong side of the dash -- you head out onto the open road, and then BAM... before you know it, your vacation turns to shit because you spend the majority of your time bitching out the other motorists for not driving on the right side of the road to accommodate you.

    No???

    Didna think so..

    The analysis stands...

    Sorry Michale, but the FACTS show that you're like an illegal alien bitching about the natives, exactly like what your ilk insists is wrong with this country.

    Deal with that. :)

  22. [22] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    altohone,

    As for the survey question about using different tactics in different neighborhoods and the response by police officers, your interpretation which attempts to portray their answers in the most favorable light is one possible way of looking at it, but since the survey didn't ask the obvious follow up question to clarify, there isn't any evidence that your interpretation actually reflects what the surveyed police meant. Other, not so favorable interpretations are also possible (and the evidence we see regularly suggests it is the more likely possibility)...

    I was answering it from perspective of someone with knowledge of how law enforcement works. You are correct that there were no follow up questions to clarify what was meant by the question. But there really isn't a need as the question was straight forward! The people in my life who I would describe as being somewhat racist or sexist would never admit they were that way. They would deny it. If the question asked, "Do you discriminate against certain people based on your own prejudices while at work?" do you honestly believe that large percentage of people would be so bold to answer, "Yup!"???

    If you asked medics working in an ER, "Do you ever treat certain patients differently than you treat others when they come onto the ER?", I am certain most would say "Yes, it's called 'TRIAGE'!" Now that doesn't mean that some could have answered that question thinking they were being asked whether they discriminate or have prejudices against certain folks, but when discussing their profession -- most people don't think in those terms because they hold their profession to a high standard.

    I know I can't speak for all law enforcement, but if you have been around as many as I have, for as long as I have, you do start to understand their thinking processes and how their brains tend to process things.

    I was fired from my job as a 911 call receiver after I tried to report my supervisor for having me enter a police incident falsely in order to get a quicker response based on the suspect's race. She had me enter a call of a man begging for change as a strong armed robbery because the person was black. She wanted me to enter it as an armed robbery at first. She defended her instruction to me by saying, "Those kind of people usually have a weapon on them!" The agency tried to brush it under the rug (the director was interviewing for a big new job and having one of her supervisors disciplined for doing what she did would have not made the director look good) but I kept demanding they investigate her. When it became clear that I wasn't going to just let it go, they fired me.

    So yes, yes I do know that it does happen. I never once said it didn't. But that sort of bigotry is not the norm 98% of the time. And I can guarantee you that my former supervisor would never have answered that she discriminates against certain people when doing her job. Those that answered "no", were responding to the question like you did. Those that answered "yes" were responding to it like I did.

  23. [23] 
    Kick wrote:

    LWYH [14]

    What's worse, the divide is not over philosophical differences, it's become solely based on identity. We saw 8 years of Republicans voting against legislation that they had supported in the past. The substance of the legislation was not what they opposed; it was who would get the credit for signing it into law that caused them to reject it!

    I know, right? And they spent that time using the Tea Party as cover for why they couldn't compromise and allowed them to flourish and grow. Now the monster they've appeased refuses to cooperate with their agenda, and they blame Democrats for not letting them screw over Americans and pass legislation that would harm the most vulnerable among us so Trump could get a "win" and commence to cutting taxes for corporations and billionaires with their ill gotten gains from the poor.

    And now he's right back at it last night claiming he'll get a health care bill passed after the shit show he pulled last week.

    Who knew health care would be "such an easy one"? :)

  24. [24] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01 [18]

    As for the soup of the day, I think both you and nypoet are overestimating the Trumpon.

    Trumpon! You honor him with a title he's not worthy. He spent his entire campaign and the majority of his presidency shitting on Democrats in word and in deed and then whining like a little bitch when they wouldn't help him screw over the people so he could notch a "win" and commence to enriching the billionaires.

    If there is evidence that suggests otherwise, I missed it.

    I know, right? There's little evidence to suggest he's a decent human, forget about being "presidential." He's seeking power and money, and he's the biggest threat to democracy in America... Benedict Donald.

  25. [25] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01 [19, 20]

    Nice.
    I dare say you would have made a good punk.

    Oh, I'm not worthy, Punk.

    On second thought, it's never too late.
    I think you already have the combat boots... I'd be happy to share a list of my favorite songs/bands.

    Oh, I got lots and lots of boots. Will these do?

    http://www.sportsmansguide.com/product/index/mens-corcoran174-10-leather-tanker-boots-black?a=545056&pm2d=CSE-SPG-15-SZLA&utm_medium=cse&utm_source=shopzilla&utm_campaign=CI

    If you post your music, I promise to listen. :)

  26. [26] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    If you post your music, I promise to listen. :)

    does that go for my music too?

    https://youtu.be/PTSLGCCowWk

    JL

  27. [27] 
    Kick wrote:

    JL [26]

    does that go for my music too?

    https://youtu.be/PTSLGCCowWk

    Oh my gosh, JL. You couldn't have possibly known this, but antidisestablishmentariansim is actually one of my favorite words out of all of them.

    I am also very fond of hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia.

    That was an awesome song... I loved it! :)

  28. [28] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    Kick -

    I used to be a big fan of the Corcoran line of products...but now that I spend most of my time in the wilds of CENTAM and SOUTHAM I prefer these....

    http://www.rockyboots.com/rocky-c5c/rocky-c5c-commercial-military-boots/RKYC003.html

    Not quite like to old flight boots I wore, but comfy as hell.

    I like to think of them as middle age punk :)

  29. [29] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    Hey Alto-

    Don't you think Toy Dolls is great place for Kick to start?

    Nellie always cheers me up....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9m7tPikH0UA

    what could be done with those lyrics today would be true classic punk subversion.

  30. [30] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    To DC
    A travelling circus came
    They brought an intelegent elephant
    and Trump was his name...

  31. [31] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @kick,

    thanks!

    :)

    JL

  32. [32] 
    altohone wrote:

    Listen
    22

    You know how police process thoughts?

    Except for our resident trumpling obviously, and all who think like him... which we all know is a disturbingly large number (see endorsements, law enforcement, Trump).

    Finally some hard evidence.

    Oh wait.
    A "trust me" argument isn't quite evidence nor hard.

    Setting aside that the question from the survey may have been carefully worded to elicit a truthful response without triggering the "my bigotry is showing" instinct, you then go on to share an anecdote in which a racist 911 dispatcher tries to get you to lie by presenting a misdemeanor by a poor black man as a felony, which is then swept under the rug by your superiors, who then proceed to fire you for not being a racist willing to lie like them...
    ... all to defend the notion that racism in law enforcement tactics wasn't exposed by the survey because people are too smart to admit such a thing.

    Very impressive.
    You've got me convinced!!!!!!!!!!

    BTW, it's funny that you mention triage in the ER.
    Yup.
    There's proven racism there too.
    In everything from white people getting more pain medication to better care for heart attacks to higher doses of insulin for diabetics.
    Even black kids with appendicitis get less pain relief.
    It has even been documented in VA hospitals.

    We are an exceptional country.
    Maybe you can go into medicine and try to defend how they process thoughts too?

    Anyway, despite my prodding, you still refused to answer my original, direct question about whether you agree with the police beating a suspect who had gotten on his knees and surrendered, and if so, why.
    You seem to have convictions, but apparently they can't be shared in this case.

    I might normally guess at your motivations for keeping them secret, but instead I will simply ask you what my motivation is to continue a discussion with you?

    Seriously.
    If you won't engage, what is the point?

    A

  33. [33] 
    altohone wrote:

    Kick
    24

    I wasn't honoring the guy.
    You know me better than that.

    25

    I'm confident you are indeed worthy.
    As for the boots, the style is less important than a willingness to use them.

    Here's one of my favorite albums.
    Not sure it's the best introduction material, but it's near and dear to my heart-

    Bad Brains
    I Against I

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EcNclDR9U0

    A

  34. [34] 
    michale wrote:

    She's a lefty on a lefty political chat board and water is indeed wet. It's not rocket science, Michale.

    OK, so you admit that ya'all have a Left Wing bias..

    It's called bigotry, Victoria...

    I am glad to see you finally admit it. Now we can drop the subject.. :D

  35. [35] 
    michale wrote:

    Altohone,

    Other, not so favorable interpretations are also possible

    Like in the case of accusing cops of racism in black shootings??

    I have always said the EXACT same thing.. Other interpretations are possible. Interpretations that are NOT favorable to the anti-cop agenda..

    I am glad we can find agreement on that point..

    Two fer two.. :D

    nd in case you missed it, our resident trumpling and former LEO also chimed in with a comment to my discussion with goode trickle that made it abundantly clear that it wasn't about language barriers or residents on a given block with a record of threatening police in his eyes.

    Cite??

    No??

    Didna think so.. :D

  36. [36] 
    michale wrote:

    Except for our resident trumpling obviously, and all who think like him... which we all know is a disturbingly large number (see endorsements, law enforcement, Trump).

    For someone who professes to ignore me, you sure read all my comments and talk about me an awful lot. :D

    BTW, it's funny that you mention triage in the ER.
    Yup.
    There's proven racism there too.
    In everything from white people getting more pain medication to better care for heart attacks to higher doses of insulin for diabetics.
    Even black kids with appendicitis get less pain relief.
    It has even been documented in VA hospitals.

    Cite???

    Oh.. silly me... :D

    Anyway, despite my prodding, you still refused to answer my original, direct question about whether you agree with the police beating a suspect who had gotten on his knees and surrendered, and if so, why.
    You seem to have convictions, but apparently they can't be shared in this case.

    I know you are not directing this to me, but since you can't help but talk ABOUT me so much, it feels like it is..

    The problem here is that you want to show a snapshot of a police incident and then demand to be told whether or not it was justified..

    That's ridiculous...

    A person needs a LOT more than a simple snapshot to logically and rationally assess the justification of an event..

    A picture DOES say a thousand words, it's true...

    But many many MANY of those words are not factual...

    Michale Brown taught us that...

    If one takes into account the entirety of the incident, not just the snapshot, then it IS not only possible, but it's likely, that the snapshot is depicting a justifiable use of force...

    But, without further information, without further FACTS to go along with the snapshot, you might as well be asking how many angels can dance on the head of a pin..

  37. [37] 
    michale wrote:

    Michale Brown taught us that...

    Wooops... :D That would be Michael Brown...

  38. [38] 
    michale wrote:

    Ergo, the *ONLY* conclusion that fits all the facts is that it's Party/Political bigotry at work...

    It's a lefty chat board and water is wet.

    Like I said... Party/Political bigotry...

    That's all I wanted you to admit..

    We're good now.. :D

  39. [39] 
    Kick wrote:

    GT [28]

    I used to be a big fan of the Corcoran line of products...but now that I spend most of my time in the wilds of CENTAM and SOUTHAM I prefer these....

    Oh, yes. Those will do nicely, and a color for every application. I confess I prefer a steel shank in my boots... helps with balance and makes you like one of those Weebles that wobble but don't fall down.

    Not quite like to old flight boots I wore, but comfy as hell.

    I like to think of them as middle age punk :)

    Okay, as long as you got a black pair, maybe tie a bandana with skulls on those, they could be punk. :)

  40. [40] 
    michale wrote:

    Embracing Bigotry
    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2012/08/27/embracing-bigotry/

    Iff'n ya want to read up on the issue :D

  41. [41] 
    Kick wrote:

    GT [29]

    Nellie always cheers me up....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9m7tPikH0UA

    Okay... well. I listened to that all the way through. I could not help but notice that the guy who resembled a microphone with ribs was singing about a circus elephant going trumpety trump... trump, trump, trump. *LOL*

    what could be done with those lyrics today would be true classic punk subversion.

    Especially with those "trump" lyrics. Catchy tune. I actually think I'd heard it before, and now I'll be singing that tune all day and probably for the next week. Thanks for that GT! :)

  42. [42] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01 [33]

    I wasn't honoring the guy.
    You know me better than that.

    Of course not; that was my lame attempt at sarcasm.

    I'm confident you are indeed worthy.
    As for the boots, the style is less important than a willingness to use them.

    Those tanker boots are the best. They have a decent amount of steel in the shank, almost feels like they're holding you to the ground. They have a most excellent curve in the heel that wraps quite nicely around a person's neck... when necessary. Seriously. :)

    Here's one of my favorite albums.
    Not sure it's the best introduction material, but it's near and dear to my heart-

    Bad Brains
    I Against I

    A whole album *yikes*! Well, I did promise. I'll listen a bit later today and get back to you, but right off the bat, I'm sensing maybe a Rastafarian vibe because of the name of the album... "I Against I"... sounds exactly like something my man Bob Marley would say. So I'll make me a cup of Marley Jamaica Blue... very smooth... and report back later... mi ago a Jamrock, irie! :)

  43. [43] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Anyway, despite my prodding, you still refused to answer my original, direct question about whether you agree with the police beating a suspect who had gotten on his knees and surrendered, and if so, why.
    You seem to have convictions, but apparently they can't be shared in this case.

    I thought that I had replied to that question in the earlier article's postings, but if I failed to or was not clear enough with the answer: Yes, the video makes the officer look bad. However, I would need to know what occurred prior to the video and read the officers explanation as to why they chose to respond as they did before I would be able to make a judgement.

    The whole point of my bringing up the Michael Brown "hands up" video being interpreted differently depending on whether a person knew what had occurred between Brown and Wilson just prior to when the video starts was to support my point that until you know all of the details of an event, passing judgement solely on what the few seconds of video reveals isn't wise.

    The video, by itself, will always make the person using force look like a bully. We as a society are uncomfortable with witnessing physical violence that is one sided. I joke that it has been because we now have adults who were raised getting "time out's" instead of spankings as the consequences for their wrongdoings, but the fact is that people are often shocked when they witness the police using physical force to compel compliance. But that IS part of their job.

    The Eric Garner video is probably the best example of a video that people will view and immediately think the police were wrong in how they handled the call. It's a sad video to view, knowing that he's going to be dead by the end of it. The video doesn't show that the day before two officers attempted to serve the court-ordered arrest warrant on Garner, but that he refused to comply. Because of his size, the officers chose not to engage him physically because they knew it would wind up with someone being injured or killed. So they left and came back the next day with more than a dozen officers with them.

    The first time I saw the video, I thought to myself, " Did this happen at a donut shop or what?" because of the number of police involved. They took so many for two reasons:

    1. To, hopefully, make it clear to Garner that resistance was futile.

    2. To have the manpower to actually be able to compel compliance with the least amount of risk of anyone (including Garner) being injured.

    Despite all of this, Garner chose to resist knowing that he would have to face all of the officers forcing him to comply. It was HIS choice. There was nothing in that video that came even close to fitting the definition of "police misconduct", much less "police brutality"!

    I apologize for my ramblings. I have been sick for the last two weeks and after rereading my posts from that timeframe, it's clear that I have definitely been drunk typing recently!

    I do try to offer my insight and the experience on the subject matter. I will disagree with your assessment that I am too quick to give the officer the benefit of the doubt in these cases -- I believe I am just not as willing to condemn the officer involved until all of the evidence is presented. I have no issue with officers who violate the law and the public's trust being held accountable.

  44. [44] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Anyway, despite my prodding, you still refused to answer my original, direct question about whether you agree with the police beating a suspect who had gotten on his knees and surrendered, and if so, why.
    You seem to have convictions, but apparently they can't be shared in this case.

    I thought that I had replied to that question in the earlier article's postings, but if I failed to or was not clear enough with the answer: Yes, the video makes the officer look bad. However, I would need to know what occurred prior to the video and read the officers explanation as to why they chose to respond as they did before I would be able to make a judgement.

    The whole point of my bringing up the Michael Brown "hands up" video being interpreted differently depending on whether a person knew what had occurred between Brown and Wilson just prior to when the video starts was to support my point that until you know all of the details of an event, passing judgement solely on what the few seconds of video reveals isn't wise.

    The video, by itself, will always make the person using force look like a bully. We as a society are uncomfortable with witnessing physical violence that is one sided. I joke that it has been because we now have adults who were raised getting "time out's" instead of spankings as the consequences for their wrongdoings, but the fact is that people are often shocked when they witness the police using physical force to compel compliance. But that IS part of their job.

    The Eric Garner video is probably the best example of a video that people will view and immediately think the police were wrong in how they handled the call. It's a sad video to view, knowing that he's going to be dead by the end of it. The video doesn't show that the day before two officers attempted to serve the court-ordered arrest warrant on Garner, but that he refused to comply. Because of his size, the officers chose not to engage him physically because they knew it would wind up with someone being injured or killed. So they left and came back the next day with more than a dozen officers with them.

    The first time I saw the video, I thought to myself, " Did this happen at a donut shop or what?" because of the number of police involved. They took so many for two reasons:

    1. To, hopefully, make it clear to Garner that resistance was futile.

    2. To have the manpower to actually be able to compel compliance with the least amount of risk of anyone (including Garner) being injured.

    Despite all of this, Garner chose to resist knowing that he would have to face all of the officers forcing him to comply. It was HIS choice. There was nothing in that video that came even close to fitting the definition of "police misconduct", much less "police brutality"!

    I apologize for my ramblings. I have been sick for the last two weeks and after rereading my posts from that timeframe, it's clear that I have definitely been drunk typing recently!

    I do try to offer my insight and the experience on the subject matter. I will disagree with your assessment that I am too quick to give the officer the benefit of the doubt in these cases -- I believe I am just not as willing to condemn the officer involved until all of the evidence is presented. I have no issue with officers who violate the law and the public's trust being held accountable.

  45. [45] 
    michale wrote:

    The key point that many people don't get, what it all boils down to is this:

    There is NO inherent right to resist Law Enforcement..

    If a cop tells you to jump, you jump.. If the cop is wrong, he will pay the price after the fact...

    If people fight the law BEFORE the fact, the LAW will *ALWAYS* win...

    As we used to say in the military and in LEO circles.....

    "I guaran-fuckin'-tee it..."

    It really is THAT simple....

  46. [46] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Michale [45]

    You are exactly right, there is no right to resist. The best thing people can do is to obey any order given to them by the police (as long as obeying it doesn't result in harm to yourself or others). No one has ever convinced an officer that their rights were being violated by the police. That is the job of the courts.

  47. [47] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    BTW, it's funny that you mention triage in the ER.
    Yup.
    There's proven racism there too.
    In everything from white people getting more pain medication to better care for heart attacks to higher doses of insulin for diabetics.
    Even black kids with appendicitis get less pain relief.
    It has even been documented in VA hospitals.

    I'm sorry. I did not realize that you needed the definition of triage explained to you. How much medicine a person is given for a particular ailment has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH TRIAGE!

    Triage focuses on getting medical aid to the people who needed it most and will benefit from it most. Someone who is having a heart attack gets priority over someone with a sprained ankle. When facing a case where there are two people who need immediate lifesaving care but only time to help one, it is about assessing which patient has the greatest chance to survive with help.

    BTW, you can find RACISM EVERYWHERE if you look hard enough. You can find any -ism that your little heart desires if you go out searching for it. Again, perspective plays a huge roll in making that possible.

  48. [48] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    michale [7] -

    The Tea-Party-esque elements within the Democrat Party who will refuse to work with President Trump on ANYTHING, regardless of how good it is for their country...

    They are going to be the problem here..

    Not really. I mean, you are correct in that any really bipartisan compromise is almost by definition not going to be supported by hardliner factions in both parties, but in reality, there will be enough moderates in the middle of both parties to pass something acceptible enough to both.

    Compromises like this usually mean everyone's ox gets gored a little bit, but not too much. So no wall funding, no Planned Parenthood defunding, but also no single-payer health care or other Dem demands which would go too far (for a compromise bill).

    There certainly will be Dems who swear never to work with Trump on anything and never to vote for anything he'll ever get the chance to sign. My guess, though, is that there will be far fewer of these than there were GOPers who swore never to vote for anything Obama wanted. Remember them? You used to be their biggest cheerleader, not so long ago.

    To sum up: I think there are more pragmatic Dems than pragmatic GOPers, and that will probably be reflected in the final vote. Maybe 80 Rs and 150 Ds, something like that.

    We'll see, we'll see...

    -CW

  49. [49] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    michale [8] -

    I mean, honestly.. What Party nominates a TOTALLY unelectable candidate *SOLELY* because it's "her turn"...???

    Careful, there.

    I mean: Bob Dole, John McCain, Mitt Romney. Each and every one because "it was their turn."

    :-)

    We have met the enemy and he is us!
    -Pogo Possum

    -CW

  50. [50] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Kick [11] -

    Now, see, that's precisely the song which ran through my head, too. Thought I was going to have to look up the lyrics, so I'm glad to see you've already done it!

    :-)

    Don Harris [12] -

    OK, that Depends line was funny! Nice...

    ListenWhenYouHear [14] -

    What I found even sadder was Ryan swearing he wasn't even considering working with the Dems. Never heard a Speaker say anything like that before. Usually they offer up some candy-coated version of: "We'd be happy to work with the other party once they agree to all our basic demands." I mean, not that blunt -- totally sugar-coated, but that is supposed to be the standard way of responding to the question. Things have gotten pretty extreme in the GOP when Ryan can't even give lip service to the idea, in fear of even more revolt within his own ranks.

    michale [15] -

    CALIFORNIANS... Not Americans... Californians..
    There is obviously a difference :D

    Yeah, the difference is our economy is booming because we threw out enough Republicans from our government to fix things. Our federal taxes go to deadbeat red states who can't manage the same thing because too many Republicans are elected there. We voted for a Democratic president in the hopes that all of America could enjoy what we've got (we even tax rich people more, at the same time!).

    There's a difference between CA and places like Kansas and Louisiana where conservative theory wrecks the government, in other words.

    Thanks for pointing it out!

    :-)

    altohone [18] -

    Good point. But I think what's different is that Trump is watching his poll numbers go down. The more that happens, the more he's going to wildly flail around in search of something to make it better. One of those might just be "talk to some actual Democrats in Congress," who knows?

    I'm not saying he'll be "presidential" when doing it, in other words, I think he'll just wake up one morning and decide today's the day to stick the knife in the Tea Party by working with Schumer. A subtle difference, perhaps.

    nypoet22 [26] -

    Oh, we're doing silly word songs? OK, here goes...

    What are words worth? Words!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blBDWv1y7_g

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQ0PHbQ-Xeo

    and finally,

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=quFZvPX0npU

    Talk? It's only talk! Elephant talk!

    Or, now that I think about it, I could just post the entire album My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts, a collaboration between Brian Eno and David Byrne where all the lyrics are random bits they recorded off the radio...

    Speaking of which, and because I'm feeling so good on this lovely April Fool's Day, here's one for michale with a military theme (tower radioing fighter pilot!):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmzT5vzKwvk

    C'mon, get down, F-104...

    :-)

    -CW

  51. [51] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, I have to caution everyone not to try what I just did in that previous comment. Because I am overlord of the site, I am allowed to post multiple links in one comment. Don't try this at home! If you do the same, it'll just get stuck in the filter!

    Plus, I wanted to post two tracks from MLITBOG, just because they're both politicians and seem pretty relevant.

    America Is Waiting (think about Trump when listening):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMTi73h5B_U&list=PLex101hoCJ9vxeZ394IwCu9Z6WhHv1K0d&index=1

    Mea Culpa (politician apologizing... a rare event!)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsuVqBddYH0&list=PLex101hoCJ9vxeZ394IwCu9Z6WhHv1K0d&index=2

    But my favorite is still The Jezebel Spirit, with an actual call-in radio exorcist!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdHSurqqnmY&index=5&list=PLex101hoCJ9vxeZ394IwCu9Z6WhHv1K0d

    Enjoy... (but, if you reply, remember one link per comment...).

    :-)

    -CW

  52. [52] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Kick 27 -

    One of my favorite titles ever:

    Friday Talking Points [308] -- Selenofriggatriskaidekaphobics Unite!

    Just read the first paragraph, it explains it...

    :-)

    -CW

  53. [53] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    goode trickle [29] -

    Brilliant! And so very timely...

    :-)

    altohone [33] -

    When I think of punk and Trump, what comes to mind is:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDyb_alTkMQ

    :-)

    -CW

  54. [54] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01 [33]

    Here's one of my favorite albums.
    Not sure it's the best introduction material, but it's near and dear to my heart-

    Bad Brains
    I Against I

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EcNclDR9U0

    Playing catch up, Punk! I got myself in a situation and landed in the hospital for a couple days.

    Okay, this album is pretty awesome. So I take it that "Bad" means "good" in their band title, right? These guys have to be reggae punk, right? I was pleasantly surprised to like punk, and I caught that political radio snippet in the intro around 0:45: "as the economy revives because of the steep drop in oil prices." :)

  55. [55] 
    Kick wrote:

    CW [49, 50, 51, 52]

    Okay, I followed all your links, and I feel like I just had a workout. Wow. :)

    When I think of punk and Trump, what comes to mind is:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDyb_alTkMQ

    And now the end is near... Heh! :)

  56. [56] 
    Kick wrote:

    michale [34]

    OK, so you admit that ya'all have a Left Wing bias..

    It's called bigotry, Victoria...

    I am glad to see you finally admit it. Now we can drop the subject.. :D

    I don't admit anything for other people; that is between you and other people. I've also told you at least a thousand times that where Donald Trump is concerned, I have no party bigotry. I don't give a shit what letter is behind his damn name. If he was a Democrat, it would make no difference. A con by any other party is still a con. I'm an issues person. If you want to read party bigotry into it and refuse to acknowledge that some people know how to recognize a lying con artist when they see one, then knock yourself silly. :)

  57. [57] 
    michale wrote:

    If he was a Democrat, it would make no difference. A con by any other party is still a con.

    Fine..

    All you have to do is point to any comments you made about Donald Trump to that effect when he was a Democrat..

    In absence of that, the *fact* remains you ONLY castigated President Trump after he became a Republicans..

    That all but proves that it's a -R/-D issue, not an "issues" issue..

  58. [58] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Kick [54] -

    I had actually never seen that video of Sid Vicious, I had just heard recordings of it. I thought the audience was a little weird while watching it, so I was pretty surprised by the ending!

    -CW

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