ChrisWeigant.com

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.

If Trump were a normal president, the explanation might have been that Hurricane Florence hit the Carolinas and caused widespread devastation, and Trump was restraining himself during the emergency. However, Trump is not a normal president by any stretch of the imagination, because if he were the question of why he hasn't unloaded several tweetstorms of his own wouldn't even arise. But he is who he is, which makes his silence on Twitter all the more notable.

Trump did take the time to hit back hard on criticism of his handling of Hurricane Maria on Twitter, even while Hurricane Florence was happening. So it's not like someone hid his phone or anything (at least, up until last week). He also tweeted several times on the general subject of how, in his eyes, the Mueller investigation is monstrously unfair -- but this is really just par for the course for Trump. But there's been nary a peep on Paul Manafort flipping, Brett Kavanaugh's troubled nomination, or Stormy Daniels comparing his penis to a rather small mushroom.

Trump has even made public statements and answered reporters' questions during the past few days, where he also has been remarkably restrained in his comments about Kavanaugh and his accuser. This is decidedly odd, since Trump has never in the past shied away from attacking women bringing sexual misconduct charges against either him or his political buddies. His go-to strategy is to launch a full-scale attack on the women themselves, no matter how believable their claims are. And yet Christine Blasey Ford has (so far) escaped any such attacks from Trump. Trump has even said she should be heard and that delaying the confirmation votes is what should happen, so that her full story gets out. He's never said anything remotely similar when others have made such accusations against him or his political cronies in the past.

So what is really going on here? Perhaps Trump has finally turned the corner and become truly presidential? OK, I'll wait while you pick yourself up off the floor from laughing so hard....

Maybe the White House staff has started sprinkling his two ice cream scoops with Xanax? That certainly sounds plausible.

Does Trump and the White House fear that further revelations about Kavanaugh are about to hit the airwaves? I've heard this posited, but you'd think it would have happened by now if it were going to. If this is really the case, then Trump would be right to be wary about a full-throated defense of Kavanaugh, because it might backfire if other women begin telling similar stories.

One possible explanation I've heard rumored is that Ivanka is telling Trump to cut Kavanaugh loose and instead nominate a woman for the Supreme Court seat. There are some conservatives who had been urging Trump to do this in the first place, so that could be possible.

Maybe his political team sat Trump down and made him realize how dim the picture looks for Republicans in November, and specifically told him what kind of trouble the GOP is already in with women? That would explain why Trump has seemed so open to allowing Ford to testify in a Senate hearing, because the alternative would have hurt the Republicans even more.

That last scenario could also explain why Trump hasn't mentioned Manafort, either -- his legal team could have also sat Trump down and explained why silence in response to Manafort flipping is the best legal strategy to take, right now.

Trump, however, is famously loath to accept such advice from anyone. He's been told similar things in the past and has just flat-out ignored such wise counsel. Which brings us back to the possibility that someone just took away Trump's phone and left him without the means to tweet. But even that doesn't explain how subdued Trump has been in person when asked about Kavanaugh's situation. He hasn't made a single snide or dismissive comment about her yet, which -- for him -- is downright remarkable.

With any other president, being so subdued might be explained as a bunker mentality -- with so many bad things hitting the White House at the same time, hunkering down and waiting for them to blow over seems like an entirely reasonable response. Especially in the midst of an actual hurricane, where everyone was hunkering down and waiting for a real storm to pass. Stonewalling the press in this fashion actually has a long presidential history, in fact. But again, this is Donald Trump we're speaking of.

Is Trump a rumbling volcano that will eventually blow its top? That could be the most likely explanation. If true, we can expect it to happen during the first political rally he headlines, where he usually rambles on with no script about whatever is currently on the top of his mind. Maybe we're in the metaphorical eye of the storm, awaiting the worst of the wind to come.

Or perhaps a different metaphor is in order. Because the past four or five days have felt like nothing so much as a classic movie cliché -- "It's quiet out there... too quiet." How much longer will this silence last? It's really anyone's guess, at this point.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

107 Comments on “A Strangely Subdued Trump”

  1. [1] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Prince Valium?

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Less a matter of drugs than a president being threatened by his fellow - ahem - Republicans who want to confirm Kavanaugh, at all costs.

  3. [3] 
    TheStig wrote:

    I know Lindsey Graham jokingly suggested Trump was on Valium after one of Trump's primary debates, but I can't recall ever seeing Trump this mellowed out. He is not noted for his self control.

  4. [4] 
    neilm wrote:

    I think the only thing that could get Trump to shut up and listen is if somebody told him he was in deep doo-doo with Manafort or Cohen flipping and he needs to wise up to avoid prison time.

  5. [5] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    TS,
    Prince Valium?

    Either they are hiding them in his BigMac’s or his coke dealer is cutting his product with Xanax now, but he’s definitely being mellowed out artificially!

    I was especially thrilled to read Trump tell one interviewer that he didn’t bother reading any of the information that he ordered declassified! But Lou Dobbs and Sean Hannity, neither of which have clearance to read classified material, insisted that the documents contained important information that the public needed to know to prove Trump is being framed — and they are why he declassified the records!

  6. [6] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    neilm,

    I don’t know who would be able to pull him out of his rich Trump bubble of reality in order to get him to see the real world as it truly is! MAYBE Ivanka in a halter top and short-shorts can get him to do what she says....or better yet, Putin in a halter top and short-shorts!

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Less a matter of drugs than a president being threatened by his fellow - ahem - Republicans who want to confirm Kavanaugh, at all costs.

    But!! But!! But!!

    "Sources" say that Republicans want to ditch Kavanaugh!!! :D

    Speaking of Kavanaugh...

    “I think it’s not fair to Judge Kavanaugh for her not to come forward and testify.”
    -Senator Susan Collins

    Looks like Kavanaugh's confirmation is in the bag..

    The 3 Senators who were on the fence about this so-called "victim"'s credibility have come down firmly on the side of Kavanaugh.

    It's a done deal...

    That's what my "sources" tell me :D

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Prince Valium?

    Yunno, you really should credit when you use movie quotes.. :D

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    One possible explanation I've heard rumored is that Ivanka is telling Trump to cut Kavanaugh loose and instead nominate a woman for the Supreme Court seat. There are some conservatives who had been urging Trump to do this in the first place, so that could be possible.

    Cite???

    That would explain why Trump has seemed so open to allowing Ford to testify in a Senate hearing,

    Or...

    Or President Trump knows that Democrats are in a bind with this so-called "victim" BS and President Trump called their bluff..

    "We can't discard the possibility simply because we don't happen to like it."
    -Martin Sheen, THE FINAL COUNTDOWN

    One of your more hysterical emotional fact free commentaries, CW...

    Hope it's not a trend.. :D

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    Grassley demands Feinstein turn over letter from Kavanaugh accuser: 'I cannot overstate how disappointed I am'
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/09/19/grassley-demands-feinstein-turn-over-letter-from-kavanaugh-accuser-cannot-overstate-how-disappointed-am.html

    Looks like the worms have been turned..

    Democrats are on the defensive now.. :D

    Who could have POSSIBLY predicted this!!??

    Oh wait.. :D

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    Feinstein appeared to wash her hands of the process in a brief interview outside her Senate office with Fox News on Tuesday, saying, "I have no say, I'm the lead Democrat. ... I think it's really too bad that no one called her, or called her lawyer."

    She added: "This is a woman who has been profoundly impacted by this. Now, I can't say everything's truthful. I don't know."

    Yep, DiFi sees the writing on the wall and is throwing the so-called "victim" under the bus..

    DiFi is looking out for DiFi... :D

    This whole sad and pathetic debacle is blowing up in the Dumbocrats' faces...

    AWESOME!!! :D

  12. [12] 
    Kick wrote:

    CW: Trump has never in the past shied away from attacking women bringing sexual misconduct charges against either him or his political buddies.

    Yes, but Kavanaugh is not one of Trump's "political buddies," and at the present time he is more useful to Trump on the SCOTUS rather than not… so this is simply another case of Trump looking out for himself despite what is best for the country or anyone else. If Trump were to become convinced that Kavanaugh was more a liability to him personally rather than an asset, Kavanaugh would then become as expendable to Trump as Flynn, Comey, Bannon, etc., etc., etc. ad nauseam.

    Trump has the mind of a classic narcissist who lives in a kind of "collective now" wherein things that happened in the past are still happening now and things that are possible now are incorporated into his past. Hence, he constantly repeats the "reliving" of the campaign because to him they're part of the present. For instance, in Trump's recent interview with Hill TV:

    "If I did one mistake with Comey I should have fired him before I got here. I should have fired him the day I won the primaries. I should have fired him right after the convention. Say, ‘I don’t want that guy.’ Or at least fired him the first day on the job. If I did one mistake it was, you know, I, I really did fire him, you know I fired him a couple of months in, so it’s not like. But I would have been better off firing him or putting out a statement that I don’t him there when I get there." ~ Donald Trump

    https://thehill.com/hilltv/rising/407440-read-president-trumps-exclusive-interview-with-hilltv

    In Trump's accumulated now, he believes he could have fired Comey the day he won the primaries, and the past is constantly getting rewritten to incorporate what he knows now, like a constantly changing movie script, and for a minute there he believes his own spew until you see in the quote the instant where his brain catches up with his bullshit.

    If you'd like to see more of this dynamic in action, read that entire interview. It's very revealing regarding what is uppermost in Trump's mind, and -- surprise, not surprise -- it's Trump, always Trump.

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Since ya'all are on record as holding the position of the FBI and it's "law enforcement" officials sacrosanct...

    "It's totally inappropriate for someone to demand we use law enforcement resources to investigate a 35-year-old allegation when she won't go under oath and can't remember key details including when or where it happened."
    -FBI official

    Then this statement by the FBI should be sufficient for you to agree with me that an FBI investigation is unnecessary and unwarranted..

    Or is it you only hold statements from the FBI in high esteem when they say what you want to hear??

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    Meanwhile, Missouri Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill tweeted Wednesday night that she would not vote for Kavanaugh. In her message, she explicitly wrote that his legal rulings and ideology, and not the allegations by Ford, were the reason for her decision. McCaskill is locked in a tight re-election race in a red state that Trump won handily in 2016.

    Looks like MO is going red!! :D

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Why status of Kavanaugh confirmation process could become more clear on Friday
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/09/19/why-status-kavanaugh-confirmation-process-could-become-more-clear-on-friday.html

    It looks like the GOP is bending over every which way to accommodate this so-called "victim"...

    Yep.. It's looking more and more like the machinations of the Dumbocrats are blowing up in their faces.. :D

    Woot!!!! :D

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    Kavanaugh opposition loses steam as his accuser balks at testifying
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/09/20/kavanaugh-opposition-loses-steam-as-his-accuser-balks-at-testifying.html

    The so-called "victim" is saying to herself..

    "HOLY SHIT!!! They actually want me to testify!!!!! You Democrats PROMISED all I had to do was give ya'all the BS story and I would be done!!!!"

    :D

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's why Christine Blasey Ford, who came forward with a harrowing tale of what she called attempted rape when she and Kavanaugh were high school students, posed such a grave threat to the judge's confirmation.

    But in the last day or so, that threat seems to be deflating.

    Yep.. It most assuredly is..

    "I'm MELTING!!!! IIIII'MMMMMM MEEEELLLTTTIIINNNNGGGGGG!!!"
    -Dumbocrats Shameless & Disgusting Ploy

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    "If Ford won't testify, you have to wonder what the Republicans are supposed to do except demand a vote ... This is something that happened in high school. This is going to need her voice. There's no other way around it. No one can do it for her, as miserable as that may be."
    -MSNBC Liberal Mika Breznicki

    Heh... "MSNBC Liberal"...

    "Is there another kind?"
    -Jack Nicholson, A FEW GOOD MEN

    :D

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    A woman named Cristina King Miranda wrote on Facebook that she knew Ford and Kavanaugh in high school and that "the incident was spoken about for days afterwards in school. Kavanaugh should stop lying." But that contradicts Ford's account that she told no one for 30 years—and Miranda quickly deleted the post. ("I will not be doing anymore [sic] interviews. No more circus," she tweeted yesterday.)

    Proof positive it's all nothing but lies and bullshit..

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    Media, ABC, PBS use Facebook to beg other Kavanaugh accusers to talk, ‘Truth will emerge’
    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/washington-secrets/media-abc-pbs-use-facebook-to-beg-other-kavanaugh-accusers-to-talk-truth-will-emerge

    Lefties are DESPERATE to find any scrimp of "truth" to hang Kavanaugh with..

    Does ANYONE here honestly believe that SIX FBI Investigations would not have turned up even a WHIFF of this if it were an ongoing and pervasive thing???

    The Left needs to come to grips with the FACTS and reality...

    This whole sad pathetic attempt is going to bite the Dumbocrats on the ass...

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    Column: Eviscerating Kavanaugh: Sen. Feinstein, have you no sense of decency?
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/kass/ct-met-brett-kavanaugh-diane-feinstein-kass-20180918-story.html

    And the answer is:

    "OF COURSE I have no sense of decency!! I'm a Democrat!!"
    -DiFi

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    but he’s definitely being mellowed out artificially!

    Any facts that prove this???

    No??

    Of course not.. :D

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    I think

    No you don't.. Not really.. :D

  24. [24] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @kick,
    A much more likely explanation is that he doesn't understand how our constitutional republic works, which we already knew, and that he realized halfway through that particular run on sentence that something he'd said hadn't made sense. Not that I'm opposed to casual armchair diagnosis, but that one seems a bit far fetched.
    JL

  25. [25] 
    Kick wrote:

    This ad from Dean Phillips in suburban red district MN-3 just dropped recently. I've seen a lot of ads, but this one made me laugh out loud.

    Like the majority of Democrats, Phillips is running a local campaign focused on healthcare issues and the fact that the incumbent is known for being "missing" or "unavailable" to his constituents. :)

    https://twitter.com/deanbphillips/status/1042066789067354112

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    Question having nothing to do with any current controversy..

    Why is the Chief Justice SCOTUS appointed and not based on seniority within the court???

  27. [27] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale,

    the president appointing a chief justice is how george washington did it, and nobody since has seen fit to change the practice.

    JL

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    the president appointing a chief justice is how george washington did it, and nobody since has seen fit to change the practice.

    Ahhh.. As simple as that, eh? :D

    Hokay... Thanx.. :D

  29. [29] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    regarding the current process, i think it's poor politics to rush the nomination through. the republicans may or may not pay a price for it, but i think it would benefit them and lend credibility to the nomination to let professor ford have her say on her own terms. the FBI follow only the facts, and there doesn't appear to be enough "there" there to disqualify kavanaugh even if her testimony is 100% true. obama did coke, bush was arrested for DUI, i know i'm not the person i was 36 years ago. as awful as i'm sure it was for ford, and as much as teen kavanaugh may have deserved to be punished, there has to be a statute of limitations on that sort of thing.

    JL

  30. [30] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    -

  31. [31] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    .

  32. [32] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    !

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    regarding the current process, i think it's poor politics to rush the nomination through.

    It's poor humanity and poor decency to spring this on the committee and on Judge Kavanaugh at the last second..

    It's not fair to ANYONE, least of all the so-called "victim"...

    The manner in which this was done indicates that obstruction and delay, not justice for the so-called "victim" was the goal here..

    the republicans may or may not pay a price for it, but i think it would benefit them and lend credibility to the nomination to let professor ford have her say on her own terms.

    The so-called "victim" was offered her chance to have her say... But having her say is not the goal here..

    Delaying and obstructing the nomination. THAT is the goal..

    the FBI follow only the facts, and there doesn't appear to be enough "there" there to disqualify kavanaugh even if her testimony is 100% true.

    Probably.. But the FBI has already stated it's not their place to investigate..

    as awful as i'm sure it was for ford, and as much as teen kavanaugh may have deserved to be punished, there has to be a statute of limitations on that sort of thing.

    Yep.. Which also indicates the political nature of this whole exercise..

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    DH

    +

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    This so-called victim has til noon today to indicate she wants to testify and provide the committee with the proper documentation...

    Anyone wanna lay any bets??

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    But if ya'all REALLY want an FBI investigation???

    Let the FBI investigate the claims of rape against Bubba Clinton...

    The Kavanaugh process goes on...

    When the Clinton/Rape investigation is done, THEN the FBI can investigate this so-called "victim"'s claims..

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    but i think it would benefit them and lend credibility to the nomination to let professor ford have her say on her own terms.

    I am also constrained to point out that the so-called "victim" **WAS** offered her own say on her own terms..

    Then she changed her terms...

  38. [38] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Kick-

    "things that happened in the past are still happening now and things that are possible now are incorporated into his past."

    Why, these are classic symptoms of becoming unstuck in time! Like Billy Pilgrim....

    "Billy is spastic in time, has no control over where he is going next, and the trips aren't necessarily fun. He is in a constant state of stage fright, he says, because he never knows what part of his life he is going to have to act in next."

    Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-5 (attribution probably unnecessary)

  39. [39] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    It's not fair to ANYONE, least of all the so-called "victim"...

    one of the most important changes that our culture needs is to let the victims of sex crimes decide for themselves what THEY think is fair, and in what way they feel able to share their stories. she's asking for an FBI investigation, not for her accusation to be believed without corroboration, so my view is that she needs to be taken at her word. further, i'd caution you against using the phrase "so-called" because that term carries with it an accusation that she's lying. since the facts are not yet in evidence, if you want to be true to the letter of the law you can call her the "alleged" victim and sound like less of a neanderthal in the process.

    JL

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    one of the most important changes that our culture needs is to let the victims of sex crimes decide for themselves what THEY think is fair, and in what way they feel able to share their stories.

    All things being equal, I would agree with you..

    But then we have a "victim" who says "I'll share my story if you give me $20 million dollars"...

    This "victim" was offered her chance to have her say on her own terms.

    But those terms didn't fit the REAL agenda so she changed her terms..

    she's asking for an FBI investigation,

    She can ask all she wants..

    But, like asking for 20 million dollars, an FBI investigation is not reasonable under the circumstances..

    The goal is DELAY.. THAT is the only reason she NOW wants an FBI investigation..

    further, i'd caution you against using the phrase "so-called" because that term carries with it an accusation that she's lying.

    Her story has HUGE inconsistencies from what she claimed previously..

    The fact that she is lying is well established..

    if you want to be true to the letter of the law you can call her the "alleged" victim and sound like less of a neanderthal in the process.

    Dood!! You have known me for 12 years.. In that time, have I *EVER* claimed to be anything but a knuckle dragging ground pounder?? :D

  41. [41] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Kick-

    Montana Wildhack, meet Stormy Daniels. Vonnegut is probably laughing his ass off on Tralfamador.

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    President Trump...

    Jobless claims fall again to reach new 49-year low of 201,000
    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/jobless-claims-fall-again-to-fresh-49-year-low-of-201000-2018-09-20

    Making America GREAT Again

    :D

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    I am further constrained to point out that the FBI had this case back in July..

    They looked into it and said it was a huge NOTHING BURGER...

  44. [44] 
    Kick wrote:

    JL
    24

    A much more likely explanation is that he doesn't understand how our constitutional republic works, which we already knew, and that he realized halfway through that particular run on sentence that something he'd said hadn't made sense.

    What part of the Constitution do you think tripped him up in that particular instance? He's rewriting the past based on the present, and it is indeed a trait of the classic narcissist to constantly rewrite history in terms favorable to himself as facts are uncovered.

    Not that I'm opposed to casual armchair diagnosis, but that one seems a bit far fetched.

    I wasn't diagnosing him, JL, just noting he had the classic mind of a narcissist. It's not a whole lot different than noting if somebody was breaking out in hives every time they ate peanut butter, and you deduced they likely had an allergy to peanuts.

    Were I to attempt to give Trump an "armchair diagnosis," it would likely be more along the lines of malignant narcissism -- someone who straddles the boundaries between Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Antisocial Personality Disorder -- with the obvious onset of a type of dementia, likely frontotemporal. There you go... now I've really done it. ;)

  45. [45] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    35

    This so-called victim has til noon today to indicate she wants to testify and provide the committee with the proper documentation...

    Tomorrow... not today.

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    This so-called victim has til noon today to indicate she wants to testify and provide the committee with the proper documentation...

    Tomorrow... not today.

    Thanx.. Yea, I lost a day there...

    Noon tomorrow...

  47. [47] 
    Kick wrote:

    TS
    38

    Why, these are classic symptoms of becoming unstuck in time! Like Billy Pilgrim....

    Oh, my... yes... truly brilliant observation!

    Like Donald, Billy too suffered his traumatic event at the age of 12 at the hands of his father. This must indubitably be "a thing" with New Yorkers. ;)

  48. [48] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    46

    Thanx.. Yea, I lost a day there...

    And I located it and gave it back.

    Don't say I never gave you nothing! ;)

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    Don't say I never gave you nothing! ;)

    heh :D

  50. [50] 
    Kick wrote:

    TS
    41

    Montana Wildhack, meet Stormy Daniels. Vonnegut is probably laughing his ass off on Tralfamador.

    Just about the time I manage to get the Mario mushroom with the Trump hair meme pushed out of my mind... you know, the one named "Toad"... here you go with this! ;)

  51. [51] 
    neilm wrote:

    Kick [25]:

    This ad from Dean Phillips in suburban red district MN-3 just dropped recently. I've seen a lot of ads, but this one made me laugh out loud.

    https://twitter.com/deanbphillips/status/1042066789067354112

    Bloody hilarious - thanks for sharing Kick.

  52. [52] 
    neilm wrote:

    “Everybody in the White House now has to look around and ask, ‘Who’s taping? Who’s leaking? And who’s on their way out the door?’ It’s becoming a game of survival,” said a Republican strategist who works in close coordination with the White House, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to speak candidly.

    So it really is a "Reality TV Show" - but instead of "The Apprentice" it is "Survivor".

    I never liked reality TV.

  53. [53] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    Following up some discussion of TX senate the other day, it's worth taking note that Cruz debates O’Rourke tomorrow night in Dallas at 6 PM Central. Should be streamed on line on KUT dot org, nbcdfw dot com, and other local Dallas TV affiliates' web sites. It may be a good opportunity to watch both the style and message contrasts defining this election, not only in TX.

    Depending on what public poll you want to believe, the race is either R+9 or D+2. Nonetheless, there is a lot of young voting-age support. It's just not possible for any sentient being under 30 to like Ted Cruz. That's also true for many over 30, but only a tiny minority of Real Texan white males are in that cohort, so Cruz is still odds-on favorite.

    To a significant degree, Beto seems to be an outlier. More ominous for the Dems nationally, I think, is the evidence of arthritis on the ground within the party wherever it's not being managed by outside pros. For example, a machine D- lost an urban fortress state level seat to a good R- candidate in TX. One could be forgiven for hoping they're going to be paying a little better attention going forward.

  54. [54] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    Montana Wildhack, meet Stormy Daniels.

    My favorite female name from science fiction is Wyoming Knott, in The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress. And why not?

  55. [55] 
    Kick wrote:

    neilm
    51

    Bloody hilarious - thanks for sharing Kick.

    My crazy uncle swore 'til the day he died that he saw him once... Big Foot, not Paulsen. I forgot to say that MN-3 was won by HRC by 10 points in 2016 and looks to be ripe for the flipping in November... so it's now on my new list I'm making.

    If anybody has a district that's a candidate for my "flipping" list, let me know. If I recall correctly, there is a Nazi Republican running in your district... so likely not a flipper there. :)

  56. [56] 
    neilm wrote:

    If anybody has a district that's a candidate for my "flipping" list, let me know. If I recall correctly, there is a Nazi Republican running in your district... so likely not a flipper there. :)

    538 gives my Democratic incumbent a 99.9+% chance of holding on to his seat.

    His opponent is trying to keep his house painting business alive after his campaign web page got brought to everybody's attention. His recent interview didn't help his cause:

    “Everything we’ve been told about the Holocaust is a lie,” Mr. Fitzgerald said last week on a radio show hosted by Andrew Carrington Hitchcock, an anti-Semitic commentator who has glorified Hitler.

    “My entire campaign, for the most part, is about exposing this lie,” Mr. Fitzgerald said.

    Fitzgerald was endorsed by the Republican Party and won 25% of the votes in the open primary. Unfortunately for the Republican Party, they only noticed his anti-Semitic views after they had endorsed him. The withdrew their endorsement, but too late for an alternate primary candidate.

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    LB,

    To a significant degree, Beto seems to be an outlier. More ominous for the Dems nationally, I think, is the evidence of arthritis on the ground within the party wherever it's not being managed by outside pros. For example, a machine D- lost an urban fortress state level seat to a good R- candidate in TX. One could be forgiven for hoping they're going to be paying a little better attention going forward.

    That's what I like about you...

    Most time, NO ONE can tell if yer a Righty or a Lefty by how you comment..

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    538 gives my Democratic incumbent a 99.9+% chance of holding on to his seat.

    That was the same 538 that gave Hillary Clinton a 98.8% chance of being President??

    Don't hold yer breath, mon freire :D

  59. [59] 
    Michale wrote:

    That was the same 538 that gave Hillary Clinton a 98.8% chance of being President??

    My bust... I read "my" as "any"....

    My mistake...

  60. [60] 
    Kick wrote:

    neilm
    56

    Fitzgerald was endorsed by the Republican Party and won 25% of the votes in the open primary. Unfortunately for the Republican Party, they only noticed his anti-Semitic views after they had endorsed him. The withdrew their endorsement, but too late for an alternate primary candidate.

    Well, you know how accidents can happen... you're just doin' your regular everyday endorsin' stuff, and then... BAM... you "inadvertently" endorse a Nazi. It could happen to anybody, really. *shakes head*

  61. [61] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Michale-
    It doesn't seem likely there will be Fitzmagic for the political Fitzgerald as it is likely being a Nazi is Nazi only problem he has. :D

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:
  63. [63] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Well, you know how accidents can happen... you're just doin' your regular everyday endorsin' stuff, and then... BAM... you "inadvertently" endorse a Nazi. It could happen to anybody, really. *shakes head*

    heh!

  64. [64] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Republicans, be forewarned: Kavanaugh’s accuser has options

    There is no need to rush to a vote in the next few days. None. Republicans have set an artificial deadline for fear that more damaging information might come out.

    In short, Ford can use the hearing to put the senators, who have behaved shabbily, on defense.

    Ford has another option: Hold a news conference with her own experts and make the case directly to the American people. She can sit down for an interview with a respected TV journalist. She can say whatever she wants, make certain that experts are heard and even recount the much more extensive investigative efforts undertaken when Hill stepped forward. To make her case to the American people and convince them that she is sincere, honest and credible, Ford doesn’t need the Senate.

    Ford also might have the ability to go to local police to investigate if the White House refuses to activate the FBI. The Hill reports: “Can Brett Kavanaugh be investigated for an attempted rape he allegedly committed over three decades ago? In Maryland, it’s entirely possible under the law, according to some experts. Now members of the American public are calling for Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh to open an investigation, especially if the FBI doesn’t.” That would be a process over which neither the Senate nor the Trump administration would have any control.

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    Balthy,

    Yea.. Let her exercise some of those options and see how well it turns out for the Dumbocrats...

    It's over... Dumbocrats threw a lame and pathetic hail mary and it flopped...

    Any more drama queen antics and the Dumbocrats will look worse than they already do...

    The fact that this so-called victim ASKED for a hearing to air her side and then REFUSED when one was offered exposes her for the liar and the political stunt she is..

  66. [66] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    as awful as i'm sure it was for ford, and as much as teen kavanaugh may have deserved to be punished, there has to be a statute of limitations on that sort of thing.[my emphasis]

    But, of course, we are not talking about a criminal law situation here where the direct impact is on two people.

    We are talking about a background check on the integrity and overall character of a man who may sit on the Supreme Court of the United States for the rest of his life, impacting the lives of Americans - specifically impacting the lives of women - for generations.

    I think Dr. Ford now has an obligation to testify, as hard as that may be for her and taking into account how hard it will be on her family. She has made a serious allegation during a serious and public confirmation of a Supreme Court justice which affects all Americans. In my view, she must come forward now, despite the horrible way the Senate Judiciary Committee is dealing with this.

  67. [67] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Sorry, Joshua … that comment above is for you!

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    I think Dr. Ford now has an obligation to testify, as hard as that may be for her and taking into account how hard it will be on her family. She has made a serious allegation during a serious and public confirmation of a Supreme Court justice which affects all Americans. In my view, she must come forward now,

    Exactly.. She made an accusation and now she wants to walk away from it.. That's bull puckies..

    despite the horrible way the Senate Judiciary Committee is dealing with this.

    How was it horrible??

    So-called "victim" makes an accusation and demands a hearing.. Committee offers her a hearing in WHATEVER venue she chooses and then she moves the goal posts..

    How is that on the Committee??

  69. [69] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    At this point I'd counsel her to blow off Grassley's Friday deadline, and show up Monday.

    If they still want her to testify then, I'd have her read a statement to the effect that, yes, the attack occurred, let that be on the record, and that if they want any more details, they can either launch an investigation, or listen to her go into greater detail with Oprah.

    Then get up and leave.

  70. [70] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    But the FBI has already stated it's not their place to investigate..

    The FBI said that? Really?

    That explains a lot.

  71. [71] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    How was it horrible??

    Well, the apparent rush to have Dr. Ford testify before the FBI can re-investigate (I know, I know, it's not the FBI's place to testify. Heh.) the allegation against Judge Kavanaugh.

    What should the Republicans do if Dr. Ford testifies and comes across as a credible witness before the senate committee?

  72. [72] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    How was it horrible??

    Well, the apparent rush to have Dr. Ford testify before the FBI can re-investigate (I know, I know, it's not the FBI's place to investigate. Heh.) the allegation against Judge Kavanaugh.

    What should the Republicans do if Dr. Ford testifies and comes across as a credible witness before the senate committee?

    Of course, the FBI has also been known to testify. :)

  73. [73] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    But the FBI has already stated it's not their place to investigate..

    You mean a guy who used to work for the FBI told Fox News that it's not their place to investigate.

    Committee offers her a hearing in WHATEVER venue she chooses and then she moves the goal posts..

    The goal posts were moved as soon as Grassley decided that he could forego the investigation, giving this witness less backup than Anita Hill had.

    It's a sham. Admit it: the Republicans are trying to force-feed us this flawed nominee. After what they did to Merrick Garland, the Democrats have carte blanche to use any tactic they can think of to stop it.

  74. [74] 
    Michale wrote:

    You mean a guy who used to work for the FBI told Fox News that it's not their place to investigate.

    No, I mean an FBI official who stated:

    "It's totally inappropriate for someone to demand we use law enforcement resources to investigate a 35-year-old allegation when she won't go under oath and can't remember key details including when or where it happened."

    The goal posts were moved as soon as Grassley decided that he could forego the investigation, giving this witness less backup than Anita Hill had.

    No, the goal posts were moved when this so-called "victim" demanded a hearing and when the answer was "SURE.. Hearing?? NO problem.." THEN it became.. "OH We want an investigation too!!"...

    Face reality, Blathy.. This is a political agenda.. Nothing more..

    After what they did to Merrick Garland, the Democrats have carte blanche to use any tactic they can think of to stop it.

    And THERE it is...

    The REAL reason behind this..

    Nothing but Dumbocrat payback..

    Now that you have admitted the blatant and pathetic partisan agenda at work, I'll be happy to agree..

    Yes, ANY tactic the Dumbocrats can think of is fair game..

    Now that you have agreed this is NOTHING but a political tactic, I have no problem agreeing with you..

    But the FACT is, Republicans are still in control...

    Kavanaugh will be confirmed... That's the reality..

    Deal with it...

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, the apparent rush to have Dr. Ford testify before the FBI can re-investigate

    The FBI had this information 3 months ago.. They investigated and determined that no further investigation was warranted..

    What should the Republicans do if Dr. Ford testifies and comes across as a credible witness before the senate committee?

    Given her lies and inconsistencies, that is highly doubtful..

    But hay.. Let's have the so-called "victim" testify and THEN we can decide if she is credible or not..

    The fact that she is refusing to testify after DEMANDING she be allowed to testify sure puts a HUGE dent in her credibility...

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    The FBI said that? Really?

    Yes, the FBI said that..

    "It's totally inappropriate for someone to demand we use law enforcement resources to investigate a 35-year-old allegation when she won't go under oath and can't remember key details including when or where it happened."

    How can you investigate when the so-called "victim" can't remember when or where the so-called "crime" happened???

    Further, it's not even a federal crime that occurred if, in fact, anything even occurred so how is this an FBI matter???

  77. [77] 
    Michale wrote:

    At this point I'd counsel her to blow off Grassley's Friday deadline, and show up Monday.

    Of course you would..

    But the Senate has rules and she will be barred from testimony on Monday if she doesn't follow those rules..

    let that be on the record, and that if they want any more details, they can either launch an investigation, or listen to her go into greater detail with Oprah.

    Oh yea.. That would PROVE her agenda is not justice but rather SOLELY a political and partisan agenda..

    I hope she does follow your advice..

    That would SEAL her fact as nothing but a Dumbocrat Party whore...

  78. [78] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Let's refrain from further comment on this matter until after Dr. Ford testifies and let's, for the sake of argument, presume that she will indeed testify.

  79. [79] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Well, the apparent rush to have Dr. Ford testify before the FBI can re-investigate

    I am also constrained to point out that the "rush" is SOLELY and COMPLETELY the fault of the so-called "victim" and the Democrats...

    They have had this information for 3 months.. If "rush" was a problem then they should have brought this matter up sooner, rather than just a day or so before the committee was to vote..

    If it's RUSH'ed as you say, then who is to blame for that??

    Certainly not Senator Grassley....

  80. [80] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's refrain from further comment on this matter until after Dr. Ford testifies and let's, for the sake of argument, presume that she will indeed testify.

    I'll be happy to do so unless new information comes out regarding this issue...

    But her lawyers have made it clear that she will not testify come Monday so, I don't think we can operate under the assumption that she will..

    And, if the so-called victim bypasses proper procedure and goes on a media blitz, as Balthy suggests, then I reserve the right to characterize that action as is appropriate...

  81. [81] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'll be happy to do so unless new information comes out regarding this issue...

    Like this:

    “By one week from today [18 Sep] I expect that Judge Kavanaugh will have been clearly vindicated on this matter. Specifically, I expect that compelling evidence will show his categorical denial to be truthful,” Whelan tweeted on Tuesday. “There will be no cloud over him.”
    -Ed Whelan, Fmr Scalia Law Clerk

  82. [82] 
    Michale wrote:

    New Information..

    “If Ms. Ford really did not want to come forward, never intended to come forward, never planned to come forward, why did she pay for a polygraph in August and why did she hire a lawyer in August if she never intended to do what she is doing?”
    -Senator Lindsey Graham

    Good questions...

    Anyone have any good answers???

  83. [83] 
    Michale wrote:

    Every indication, every fact indicates that this is NOTHING but a Party ploy..

    Democrat payback for Merrick Garland...

    Nothing about truth or justice...

    PARTY UBER ALLES

  84. [84] 
    Michale wrote:

    So... A trial balloon was sent up by the so-called "victim" and her lawyers, to see if she could give the committee the finger and have the ploy politically survive....

    Ford lawyers say she is open to testifying, but not Monday
    https://www.wral.com/ford-lawyers-say-she-is-open-to-testifying-but-not-monday/17861450/

    Apparently, the tea leaves were read and it was determined that the ploy CANNOT survive, so the so-called victim and her lawyers and their Democrat controls are waving the white-flag...

    Grassley should hold his ground..

    She testifies Monday or not at all..

  85. [85] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    New Information..-Senator Lindsey Graham

    That quote is actually two days old, but it's good to see that you're into recycling.

  86. [86] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    I did point out threads ago that Trump remains shtum on things awkwardly close to his true worries. It's his 'tweet-tell'.
    Stormy's new-found disdain for mycology notwithstanding, he was unlikely to bring out his todger to prove her wrong, she only had an audience one... The future Mrs. ex-Trump.

    Scotus goes from one calamity to the next. He reminds me of the Wylie Coyote, stepping on his own landmine and getting blown to the next, and the next, and the next, and the next... etc

    That's All Folks.

    LL&P

  87. [87] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Ford lawyers say she is open to testifying, but not Monday

    She has the right to properly prepare.

    Maybe late next week is good..if it's not too much of an inconvenience to the committee, which has all the time in the world to do this, after all..

  88. [88] 
    Michale wrote:

    That quote is actually two days old, but it's good to see that you're into recycling.

    Nice deflection..

    Do you have any good answers???

    No???

    Of course you don't...

    Face the facts, Balthy.. This has been planned since July...

    The PAYBACK FOR GARLAND OP has been in the works for months..

    And it's going to fail..

    Why??

    Because it's so slipshod and obvious....

  89. [89] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    she only had an audience [of] one... The future Mrs. ex-Trump.

    Exactly.

  90. [90] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Do you have any good answers?

    Of course I do. Mrs. Ford is no dummy. She probably got the lawyer first, who then suggested the polygraph to nail down her credibility and to protect her in the future. Standard practice.

    Interesting that Mr. Graham's statement fails to mention that she did these things before Kavanaugh was even nominated, so she was terrifically psychic if her plan was to deep-six his chances of confirmation.

  91. [91] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    [90]… Balty, That's -- Professor Christine Blasey Ford.

    And, no... This isn't your 'run-of-the-mill' scorned mistress (of Trumpian lore). This is a woman of substance, as they say. She's probably spent the last thirty years dealing with stodgy middle-aged blowhards. I'm thinking of Fed-ex-ing a few boxes of Depends to the committee chamber.

    LL&Pee

  92. [92] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    [90] … addendum;

    "Interesting that Mr. Graham's statement fails to mention that she did these things before Kavanaugh was even nominated, so she was terrifically psychic if her plan was to deep-six his chances of confirmation."

    Lol... Indeed, this happens a lot. Take for instance the hideously cunning, deep-state 'plan B' to undermine Trump from a minority position the Democrats 'invoked' when they were seemingly so incompetent to win an election. A plan so sly, if it had a tail, you could call it a Fox...all intricately planned and underway, masterminded by THEM, the THEY.

    It's a sad, laughable excuse for an administration, I wouldn't trust them to run a bath, let alone nation. Sooner this motley crew are marched off, the better.

    LL&P

  93. [93] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    This isn't your 'run-of-the-mill' scorned mistress (of Trumpian lore). This is a woman of substance, as they say.

    ..hence her caution, and wit. She knows that Grassley has to cave on the 'time to prepare' request, because to not do so makes him look like a turd.

    A plan so sly, if it had a tail, you could call it a Fox...all intricately planned and underway, masterminded by THEM

    Yup. It's a fox, as described by a Fox!

    I wouldn't trust them to run a bath, let alone nation.

    That's not only a good line, it's an increasingly common point of view.

  94. [94] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    This is now Grassley and the committee Republicans vs. the voters' sense of fairness.

    Their instinct is to cut her off, to shove the nomination through. They've already been stymied in that. There will be a hearing, and that's already a win for her, regardless of how the process ends up.

    Now they're just negotiating the details of how, when and where it happens.

    Their audience are all of the folks who will vote in a month's time. The last time they tried this (Anita Hill), women voters crucified them at the polls the following November.

  95. [95] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Indeed, this happens a lot. Take for instance the hideously cunning, deep-state 'plan B' to undermine Trump from a minority position the Democrats 'invoked' when they were seemingly so incompetent to win an election. A plan so sly..

    I like the part where they anticipated that Trump would fire Comey, and that Sessions would then recuse himself from the investigation - leaving Trump appointee Rosenstein to appoint, and then protect, the Special Counsel!

    Genius!

  96. [96] 
    neilm wrote:

    Hi Michale:

    Which is longer, the U.S. Mexico border, or the Sahara Desert?

    (Hint: one is less than 2,000 miles long and has taco restaurants on both sides; the other is over 3,000 miles long and is the Sahara Desert.)

    Just educating the right wing on basic geography. You're welcome.

  97. [97] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    [57] - Most time, NO ONE can tell if yer a Righty or a Lefty by how you comment..

    That's because I have no static partisan alignment. I use a Mt. Rushmore filter in taking a position on important things. Each of those four men contributed a different vison and set of principles which combine to
    inform the modern American state. Maybe that's the reason they're chiseled in stone out there.

    If someone stands for something which I imagine one or more of those men would support, I'll support it, and join in the politics which will activate that position. Otherwise, not.

  98. [98] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    [95] Indeed, Balty… the brain-trust kicked into overdrive to manoeuvre themselves into that Libertrap. They dug the hole, sharpened the sticks, stuck them in the hole and slyly covered them with leaves...then ran headlong into it.

    Here's something titillating; https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/politics/accusers-schoolmate-says-she-recalls-hearing-of-alleged-kavanaugh-incident/ar-BBNzoOR?ocid=spartandhp

    Oh if only the now trusted FBI had dug deeper? Or can that be the few hundred thousand unseen, soon to be burnt, pages of 'Kavanaugh, The Heady Days Of Drunken, Lecherous, Debauchery', that seem to have been withheld from public gaze?

    The plot thins, transparency might yet be realised.

    LL&P

  99. [99] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    [72] - What should the Republicans do if Dr. Ford testifies and comes across as a credible witness before the senate committee?

    That's not at all beyond possibility. In Grassley, you got an 85 yr old who uses phrases like "guys and gals" before he can catch himself. Dr. Ford's business is the measurement side of training doctorate level shrinks for the Stanford Medical School. Clinical psych "focuses on assessing ... mental illness, abnormal behavior, and psychiatric problems."

    Maybe I'm crazy, but that seems to be pretty good training for dealing with the membership of the United States Senate. She has the kind of expertise she would want in an expert witness if she didn't have it herself.

    michale, if you insist that this is just partisan hardball, don't pretend it wasn't forshadowed in the testimony. Kamala Harris, after descibing a following line of questioning as perfunctory, "Me, Too" checking-off of a box, asked Kav a series of questions about disqualifying conduct towards girls and women over his lifetime, all of which he denied chapter and verse.

    It damned well better not be possible to even place him at any party she was at, even if -no, especially, he was drunk and cannot remember it. Not sayin', not hopin'. That's just a fact.

  100. [100] 
    Kick wrote:

    Balthasar
    73

    You mean a guy who used to work for the FBI told Fox News that it's not their place to investigate.

    I would wager that most Americans are well aware that the Eff-Be-I performs investigations regarding the fitness of employees to serve their country known as a "security clearance," all day long. There are even units who deal with nothing except claims regarding sexual harassment, assault, etc.

    So I wonder what exactly that Fox News "guy" thinks the "I" in Eff-Be-I stands for? It's no wonder he lost his job. :)

  101. [101] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Lb-
    And I thought I was the only one using a stoned filter.

  102. [102] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    76

    Further, it's not even a federal crime that occurred if, in fact, anything even occurred so how is this an FBI matter???

    It's a background check for federal employment. It is not altogether uncommon for subjects to pass an initial or even several FBI investigations and then information comes to light wherein further investigation becomes warranted... see Rob Porter.

  103. [103] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    82

    “If Ms. Ford really did not want to come forward, never intended to come forward, never planned to come forward, why did she pay for a polygraph in August and why did she hire a lawyer in August if she never intended to do what she is doing?”
    -Senator Lindsey Graham

    Good questions...

    Anyone have any good answers???

    Easy answer, Mr. Graham. She never "refused to testify." Her lawyer said she would testify and has been negotiating the terms by which she would do so ever since she agreed. She... in fact... never once refused to testify.

    Perhaps Mr. Graham has simply been watching too much right-wing propaganda television. :)

  104. [104] 
    Kick wrote:

    Balthasar
    94

    Their audience are all of the folks who will vote in a month's time. The last time they tried this (Anita Hill), women voters crucified them at the polls the following November.

    Exactly this!

    Dear GOP:

    Please ramrod another Catholic pervert onto the SCOTUS.
    It worked out so well last time.

    Yours sincerely,

    The Wimmin

  105. [105] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Kick [100]: So I wonder what exactly that Fox News "guy" thinks the "I" in Eff-Be-I stands for?

    I know!! The assertion that the FBI "doesn't do that" would be on the short list for Blatantly Ridiculous Statement of the Year, if it didn't have so much competition from the twitter-verse.

    Perhaps Mr. Graham has simply been watching too much right-wing propaganda television. :)

    A long time ago, Graham was a JAG Officer. He just thinks he's cleverer than he is.

  106. [106] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    [101] - And I thought I was the only one using a stoned filter.

    Which, then, is why I agree with your goal, irrespective of what I might think about the efficiency of your current strategy.

    That being said, the adjective you use to describe your filter is a pitch, slow and down the middle, but I'm not going to take a swing at it ;=)

  107. [107] 
    Michale wrote:

    He just thinks he's cleverer than he is.

    Which, you agree with, when he says something you want to hear.. :D

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