ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles for September, 2018

Friday Talking Points -- This Is Why Women Don't Report Sexual Assaults

[ Posted Friday, September 21st, 2018 – 18:35 PDT ]

Brett Kavanaugh was supposed to have been confirmed by the Senate to a seat on the Supreme Court by now. That was the original plan, at any rate. But this plan was blown out of the water last Friday when Christine Blasey Ford came forward and publicly accused him of attempting to rape her when the two were in high school. The fallout still continues, and will continue to do so for some time to come.

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SCOTUS Daydreaming

[ Posted Thursday, September 20th, 2018 – 16:53 PDT ]

[Editor's Note: At least once a year, usually during the silly season in August, I indulge in writing a summer daydream article. I am probably "borrowing" this theme from the comic strip Doonesbury, I fully admit, but when the political news is slow and the weather's hot sometimes it's fun to just indulge your inner "what if..." and spin it in a pleasant direction, just for the heck of it. Today, I choose to do so once again, because it would be so supremely justified. And, yes, "supremely" is the only possible term to use, really.]

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A Strangely Subdued Trump

[ Posted Wednesday, September 19th, 2018 – 17:00 PDT ]

Donald Trump, in the past week, has seen his former campaign manager Paul Manafort flip on him and agree to a plea deal with Bob Mueller, watched as his Supreme Court nominee's vote had to be postponed because of a sexual assault charge levied against him, and must surely by now have heard that Stormy Daniels is about to release a new book in which she describes both Trump's genitalia and his sexual performance in rather disparaging terms. Throughout it all, though, Trump hasn't tweeted about any of it. In fact, he's been strangely subdued for days.

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Are GOP Voters Delusionally Overconfident?

[ Posted Tuesday, September 18th, 2018 – 16:38 PDT ]

Just to warn everyone up front, this is not really going to be a proper column. I had actually intended to take the day off for unrelated reasons, but rather than running a re-run column or not running anything at all, the following caught my eye. So I'm running this excerpt to stimulate conversation in the comments, because it certainly is an interesting concept, if true -- especially given the fact that the poll came from the Republican National Committee itself.

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Anita Hill 2.0 In The Age Of #MeToo

[ Posted Monday, September 17th, 2018 – 16:51 PDT ]

We are all about to see a hypothetical scenario many have wondered about actually become reality. The hypothetical situation can be stated as: "In the age of #MeToo, how would the Anita Hill accusations against Clarence Thomas have played out differently?" Because we've now got another Supreme Court judicial nominee who has been accused of sexual misconduct during his confirmation process. What happens next is (as of this writing) uncertain, but it appears that the Senate committee handling his confirmation hearings is going to be forced to address the controversy in one way or another.

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Friday Talking Points [500] -- Manafort Flips!

[ Posted Friday, September 14th, 2018 – 17:50 PDT ]

Convicted felon Paul Manafort pleaded guilty today to two additional serious federal felonies, one of which was conspiracy to defraud the United States government. He also had to pony up tens of millions of dollars' worth of real estate, because one of the frauds he perpetrated was avoiding paying $15 million in federal taxes by money laundering. The biggest news, however, wasn't Manafort pleading guilty to his ninth and tenth felonies, but the fact that to get a plea deal he had to agree to cooperate with Bob Mueller's investigation. This is what he's been fighting against doing all along, so it is big news.

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The Punditocracy Is Missing Democrats' Real Campaign Focus

[ Posted Thursday, September 13th, 2018 – 16:46 PDT ]

Pretty much all year long, there has been a popular parlor game played on the cocktail-party circuit inside the Beltway. It might be called: "Democrats Should Run On Bashing Trump And Impeachment." Both subjects were endlessly debated, and a consensus opinion emerged that this was obviously the best way for Democrats to campaign. Bashing Trump at every turn and using "the I-word" as often as possible would surely be the Democrats' best chance of success in the midterms. It became accepted as conventional inside-the-Beltway wisdom, meaning the punditocracy would ask actual Democrats about the subject whenever they got a chance. The fact that the answers didn't match with the perceived reality was barely even noted. Now, finally, some of them are beginning to take note that Democrats are actually running a very different campaign, out there beyond the Beltway.

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Trump's Polling Turns South

[ Posted Wednesday, September 12th, 2018 – 16:03 PDT ]

One of the best indicators of how midterm elections will turn out is the current president's approval rating. If he's got high job approval ratings from the public, his party can be expected to do well; sometimes even breaking historical norms. If, however, the president's job approval rating is low, then his party usually suffers in the midterms. This tracks closer than many other indicators that numbers wonks watch, such as the state of the economy or the "right track/wrong track" generic polling question. In the past two weeks -- and just two months before the 2018 midterms -- President Donald Trump's polling numbers (which were historically very low to begin with) have taken a pretty steep dive downward. Republican candidates for office are reportedly increasingly worried about this new development -- as they well should be.

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Primary Season's Last Lap

[ Posted Tuesday, September 11th, 2018 – 16:41 PDT ]

The 2018 primary election season draws to a close this week, with the final three states holding their primaries in back-to-back fashion. Today New Hampshire will vote, tomorrow Rhode Island will weigh in, and then on Thursday New Yorkers will get the final say. This seems fairly late in the year to still be holding primaries, considering that general election races have already been going on in other states for months, but I guess somebody's got to go last.

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Could Trump And Pelosi Actually Get Some Things Done?

[ Posted Monday, September 10th, 2018 – 16:37 PDT ]

So, assuming for the sake of argument that Nancy Pelosi does become speaker again and that Donald Trump is still president (there's another rather large assumption), the question that occurred to me was whether the two of them could actually work together to pass some decent new laws. Because that's not as unbelievable (or, if you will, downright laughable) a proposal as it might first sound.

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