Archive of Articles in the "2016 Elections" Category

That Was Quick

[ Posted Thursday, May 30th, 2024 – 15:39 UTC ]

Well that certainly didn't take long! After less than 10 hours of deliberating, the jury in Donald Trump's first criminal trial returned their verdict. It was a sweeping one: guilty on all 34 charges. Donald Trump will henceforth be known as: "convicted felon Donald Trump."

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Michael Cohen Takes The Stand

[ Posted Monday, May 13th, 2024 – 16:50 UTC ]

Today was probably the key day of the prosecution's testimony in the trial of Donald Trump. Michael Cohen, Trump's former "fixer," became the prosecution's star witness as he took the stand, since he is the one who can best tie together all the threads of the case introduced so far. Tomorrow will continue to be key, as the prosecution is likely to finish their direct questions and the defense will begin Cohen's cross-examination. The entire case could very well hinge on how the jury reacts to his testimony these two days, and whether or not they find him believable.

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The Trump Legal Marathon

[ Posted Thursday, April 25th, 2024 – 16:15 UTC ]

There was activity in three separate court cases against Donald Trump today: two major courtroom events, as well as a ruling in an older case. The big ones were the continuation of Trump's current criminal trial in New York for another day of testimony (which ended with the start of the first cross-examination of a witness by the defense), and the Supreme Court finally (after a pointless two-month delay) hearing Trump's sweeping claims to presidential immunity. The ruling was from a judge in New York who just rejected Trump's move to hold a new trial or at least reduce the damages in the $83 million civil judgment against him for defaming E. Jean Carroll. The judge shot down both notions, so Trump's still on the hook for the full amount. But it was the two other courtrooms which were splashed across the headlines.

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Friday Talking Points -- Week One Of The 'Don Snoreleone' Trial

[ Posted Friday, April 19th, 2024 – 17:12 UTC ]

So far the biggest news (other than today's horrific events) has been that Trump can't seem to stop falling asleep in the courtroom. He drifts off, closes his eyes, his head slumps down on his chest, his mouth goes slack... and then eventually he snaps back awake. It hasn't happened every day, but one does wonder if he's going to be this lethargic when the actual case gets rolling. Jury selection is a repetitive process than can get monotonous at times, but hearing the case presented by both the prosecution and the defense might be a little more interesting to Trump, so we'll just have to see.

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Two Things To Watch Out For In Trump's Trial

[ Posted Tuesday, April 16th, 2024 – 15:41 UTC ]

The first criminal trial of Donald Trump leapt forward today in New York City, making more progress than some had predicted after yesterday's rather slow start. Seven jurors have now been seated, which is more than one-third of the total needed (there will be a dozen jurors and six alternates in total). Nothing will happen tomorrow (the judge has ruled that the trial will take a break on every Wednesday), but it's not out of the question that a full panel of jurors could be seated by the end of the week.

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What Might Have Been

[ Posted Monday, April 15th, 2024 – 16:32 UTC ]

I was reminded recently (by a reader who tweeted it to me) that the "People v. Donald Trump" trial which began today is not so much: "the porn-star hush-money case," but rather more properly: "the 2016 election-interference case." Because when all the tawdry details are stripped away (so to speak... ahem...) this is indeed what remains: Trump gamed the system to suppress bad news about him which could have influenced how people voted. And since a relative handful of votes in a few key swing states provided him with his victory, if he hadn't done so things could easily have gone the other way. To put it differently, we might now be in a frenzy of horserace speculation about which Democratic candidate would be the nominee to succeed President Hillary Clinton, at the end of her second term.

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The People v. Donald Trump

[ Posted Thursday, April 11th, 2024 – 15:09 UTC ]

Barring any last-minute surprises, we are now all on the brink of seeing a spectacle that has never happened before: an ex-president of the United States defending himself in criminal court against felony charges. Donald Trump's lawyers filed a flurry of motions this week to try to stave off this inevitability, but to no avail. Each one was summarily dismissed or postponed and in none of them did Trump achieve what he had been seeking, which was to delay the start of his first criminal trial. I should mention that I say "his first" with optimism, since he is facing three other possible felony court cases -- but nobody knows when (if ever) any of them will begin. Hope springs eternal, but for now what we've got is: "The People of the State of New York versus Donald Trump."

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Christie Drops Out

[ Posted Wednesday, January 10th, 2024 – 18:05 UTC ]

I was just sitting here contemplating what to write about today when some breaking news made the decision for me: Chris Christie has just ended his presidential campaign. This is going to shake things up in the Republican field, obviously, but will it shake things up enough to make any sort of difference? That remains to be seen.

We won't have to wait very long for the other major candidates' reactions, since Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis are scheduled to hold their first one-on-one debate tonight on CNN, while Donald Trump will be holding a town hall over on Fox. Undoubtedly all three will be asked at some point to react to the breaking news, so we'll see if Nikki Haley (in particular) can contain her glee.

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An Alternate Reality Exercise

[ Posted Monday, October 30th, 2023 – 15:41 UTC ]

Mike Pence surprised everyone this weekend, when he abruptly announced he was ending his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination during a speech Pence gave in Las Vegas. The surprise wasn't that Pence's presidential ambitions were doomed -- anyone with half a brain could see that from the get-go -- but that Pence had actually realized it himself, this early in the process. Personally, I knew from the day he announced that Mike Pence was never going to win the Republican nomination -- not even if Donald Trump had suddenly decided not to run. Even without Trump in the race, Pence would still have been doomed. His flavor of Republicanism is a thing of the past, he has an incredibly bland and smarmy personality (he really deserves to have Trump hit him for being "sanctimonious," much more than Ron DeSantis), and he enraged the MAGA crowd by not following the Dear Leader's order to somehow wave a magic wand and overturn the results of the 2020 election on January 6th. Add all of that up and it equals a big defeat from the Republican voting base, plain and simple. So watching the coverage of the development on yesterday's morning political-chatfest shows wasn't any real surprise (other than the early timing of it). What was a surprise (for me, at least) this Sunday morning was to see Arnold Schwarzenegger being interviewed (for some unfathomable reason) on NBC's Meet The Press.

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Laying In Popcorn Supplies For Tomorrow Night

[ Posted Tuesday, August 22nd, 2023 – 16:16 UTC ]

Tomorrow night will be the true kickoff to the Republican presidential primary season, as Fox hosts the first GOP presidential debate. I should mention in advance that I will be doing my usual "snap reactions" column after the debate tomorrow night, so this is my last chance to comment on things beforehand.

I thought I would run down my impressions of all the candidates who qualified for the debate, from what I have seen and heard of them so far. Some have done a better job of getting their faces out there in the media than others, which leaves for plenty of "getting to know you" moments (for me, at any rate) tomorrow night.

Anyway, without further ado -- listed in order of the strength of their polling (which will also determine how close to the center of the stage each candidate gets to stand), here are the Republican candidates who will be on stage for tomorrow night's opening GOP presidential debate:

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