A Little About Me

A Little About Me

JASmius has graciously invited me to write on his blog, so I thought I’d introduce myself. I’m a staunch conservative who loves America as founded. Jim & I agree about most things, but we do have our disagreements. The most vehement one was regarding the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court back in the George W. Bush days (you know, back when there was a man of character in the White House). Well, he was right about that. We agree that the federal government is bloated and almost hopelessly out of control, and that the only way we are going to preserve our freedoms is to elect constitutional conservatives who will begin reversing the process that has been going on for way too long, the process of more and more government power and control over our lives. I’m beginning to wonder if that is ever going to happen, especially after this nomination process.

We had a chance to nominate a constitutional conservative. Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Bobby Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Marco Rubio – all of them have faults, obviously, who doesn’t? But picking Donald Trump over any of them is crazy. The fervor with which his followers support him is reminiscent of Obama’s followers in 2008; they completely ignored the myriad of red flags surrounding him, focusing only on his skin color. Look what that got us. Donald Trump’s supporters are doing the same thing. There are so many things he has done, so many liberal candidates he has supported, so many things he has said that are completely contrary to what he’s saying now – and they ignore it because he talks a good game. They believed his lies about Ted Cruz, and indeed maligned him and spread the falsehoods because he was the one who had a chance to stop Trump. Cruz is infinitely more qualified to be president, much more intelligent and knowledgeable about how this country works, but it didn’t matter. They want Trump, warts and all, and it doesn’t matter who has to suffer to make that happen. Look at how they attacked Megan Kelly and Fox News when they refused to lick his shoes. The only network even remotely friendly to conservatives, and Trump had them attacking like they were CBS. Really kind of amazing to watch, especially when a lot of those people have been reliable conservatives. Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Ann Coulter? It really surprises me to see them in his camp.

Having said all that – I’m not quite as vehemently anti-Trump as my blog partner. While all of the above is true, I can’t do anything that might remotely help Hillary Clinton become President of the United States. That would be an unspeakable disaster, and I think Trump would be marginally less so. I’ve pretty much checked out of this election cycle. Normally I would be blogging every day about the Republican nominee, playing up his/her strengths and doing everything in my power to promote him/her. While I will hold my nose and vote for Trump over Hillary Clinton, because like it or not, one will be President, I have absolutely no enthusiasm for him, and I won’t be wildly celebrating if he wins. My focus now will be to hopefully help Republicans hold on to the Senate and House. I don’t think Trump has the coattails to help that along, so I’m not sure what’s going to happen there.

That’s where I stand. Thanks, Jim, for the opportunity to blog alongside you.

Is The Presidential Race Loosening?

Is The Presidential Race Loosening?

You know that brief, tissue-thin lead in the RCP average that Trump took last week on the strength of a five-point “win” in the no-longer reliable Rasmussen survey?  They gave themselves a mulligan that has put Mrs. Clinton back in front by a nostril:

Polling Data

Poll Date Sample MoE
Clinton (D)
Trump (R)
Spread
RCP Average 5/13 – 5/24 43.8 42.8 Clinton +1.0
Rasmussen Reports 5/23 – 5/24 1000 LV 3.0 40 39 Clinton +1
ABC News/Wash Post 5/16 – 5/19 829 RV 3.5 44 46 Trump +2
NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl 5/15 – 5/19 1000 RV 3.1 46 43 Clinton +3
FOX News 5/14 – 5/17 1021 RV 3.0 42 45 Trump +3
CBS News/NY Times 5/13 – 5/17 1109 RV 3.0 47 41 Clinton +6

Amazing what a three-point correction in one survey does to that overall average, huh?

But that’s minimalist noise at the margins.  Here’s the noteworthy report today that will have Trumplicans bursting their capillaries, whether in fear or anger or more likely both:

Donald Trump trails Hillary Clinton by seven percentage points among middle-income voters in the Rust Belt, a key demographic he almost certainly needs to become president.

Likely voters with annual family incomes of $30,000 to $75,000 in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin back [Mrs.] Clinton over Trump, 46% to 39%, the latest Purple Slice online poll for Bloomberg Politics shows.

The findings should sound an alarm for Trump because they show he’s failing—at least so far—to dominate among the sort of voters thought to be more sympathetic to him. The poll also splashes cold water on suggestions that the real-estate developer and TV personality is well positioned to win in the Rust Belt.

The Rust Belt path holds that if Trump can hold the States Mitt Romney won in 2012 and add these four upper midwest States to the GOP “pile,” he’ll get to 270 Electoral Votes and win the election.  But he’s not even close in any of them – under 40% – and is looking like a loser in several of those aforementioned Romney States like Arizona, North Carolina, and Georgia.

And in case you were wondering, the Bloomberg survey is no outlier.  From the RCP State averages:

MICHIGAN: Rodham 49.3%, Trump 37.0%

OHIO: Rodham 42.7%, Trump 41.3%

PENNSYLVANIA: Rodham 47.0%, Trump 41.7%

WISCONSIN: Rodham 47.3%, Trump 35.8%

The four-State average is Rodham 46.6%, Trump 39.0% – or a 7.6% margin.  And he’s got to take ALL FOUR for the Rust Belt strategy to work.

That is highly unlikely, given The Donald’s intractable polling negatives across the board:

The news isn’t all good for Hillary in this poll. Despite the natural Democrat advantage in these States — the last time any of them except Ohio went for a Republican presidential nominee was in 1988 — Hillary’s favorables are still negative at 42/56. Trump scores worse at 34/64, while Obama — who won all four of these States twice — only gets a 50/49 despite an uptick in his national job approval ratings. Bernie Sanders has the best favorability rating of anyone mentioned at 55/41.

Also, if Trump is considering Newt Gingrich as his running mate for this Rust Belt-o-rama, forget it — he has a worse favorability rating than Trump at 23/58.

The key to this result comes in the personal-qualities measures. Trump scores well on changing the way Washington does business (50/22), but middle-income voters think Hillary will fight harder for the middle class (43/29), cares more about people like themselves (39/26), and understands their challenges (38/27) than Trump by substantial margins. On presidential temperament, Trump loses badly (22/49), as well as on foreign-policy skills (22/54). [emphases added]

All together now and one more time from the top: Most voters don’t like Hillary Clinton, but they detest Donald Trump.

How does he ostensibly turn these death-knelling numbers around?  The very boring GOTV organizing and ground game that he continues to spurn, or outsource to the RNC as an afterthought, the absence of which cost John McCain and Mitt Romney the presidency in the previous two cycles:

To win in these States, the Trump campaign has to make itself relevant to voters at the local level. As I wrote in my book Going Red, voters in swing States don’t make emotional connections to thirty thousand-foot messaging and big rallies. That comes through localized, peer-to-peer politics that build emotional connections to the national campaign by contextualizing it into the lives of the voters and their communities. Mitt Romney and John McCain tried the thirty thousand-foot model and ended up on the wrong end of the “cares about you” question by wide margins, and the elections as a result.

In order to take States and demographics away from Democrats — either on the Rust Belt path or on the more traditional swing-State model in Going Red — the Republican candidate has to outfight Democrats at that level where Democrats have succeeded for at least two straight presidential cycles, and in three of these four States for a lot longer than that. Until Trump runs that kind of campaign, then the Rust Belt model won’t work for him any better than the 2012 swing-State model will.

And that’s not the kind of campaign Trump wants to run, because it’s boring and takes the spotlight off of him and he doesn’t think it’s necessary because he won 11.5 million votes in the primaries, didn’t he?  How’s that any different from winning six times that many in the general, right?

And also because he’s a coiffed, conceited moron.

When Trump goes down in flames in November, it will be because of nobody else, first and foremost, but Donald J. Trump, and the ex-conservative idiots who inflicted him on the GOP.

Funny that one of his long-time and closest friends will be the primary beneficiary, huh?

Two Of The Baltimore Six Sue Marilyn Mosby For Defamation

Two Of The Baltimore Six Sue Marilyn Mosby For Defamation

Another instance in which I find myself asking, “What took them so long”?  And also, “Only two of them are suing Double-M?”:

Two officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray are suing Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby for defamation and invasion of privacy, court records show.

Sergeant Alicia White and Officer William Porter, who are both facing charges of involuntary manslaughter in the twenty-five-year-old’s death last April, filed the lawsuit against Mosby, Baltimore Sheriff’s Office Major Sam Cogen, and the State of Maryland Baltimore Circuit Court on May 2, records show.

The officers claim Mosby and Cogen knew the statement of charges filed against the officers and other statements made by Mosby at her May 1st, 2015, news conference announcing the charges “were false.”

“These among other statements were made not for the purpose of prosecuting crimes that had allegedly been committed by White and Porter, but rather for purposes of quelling the riots in Baltimore,” the suit alleges.

Actually, in this case, these defamation suits should probably have waited.  The black Sergeant White’s trial hasn’t yet begun, and Officer Porter’s first trial was a hung jury and he is presumably going to be prosecuted again.  Consequently, their respective defamation suits would stand a better chance of succeeding after Mrs. Mosby fails to convict them of anything, given that they are grounded on the assertion that all the charges announced in her “HEY, LOOK AT YOUR FUTURE U.S. SENATOR/GOVERNOR/PRESIDEN OF THE UNITED STATES!!!” presser a year and change ago are false.  At this point they have not yet been proven false beyond a reasonable doubt in criminal court – where, just as a reminder, the standard of proof is higher than in a civil tort case.

So why were the suits filed now?  Waters-muddying and, I’m assuming, gun-jumping greed.  Besides, high-profile inquisitions like this one are fought at least as much in the media as they are in the courtroom.  These salvos are a-flight in the former.  And if they happen to eventually hit their target as well where it hurts the most, so much the better.

It kinda muddies the waters all by itself that both plaintiffs and the primary defendant are African-American though.  Are we supposed to ignore that, or are Sergeant White and Officer Porter not “authentically” black because they’re cops?

If they do win, they won’t need those jobs anymore, that’s for sure.

McAuliffe-gate Lands In Hillary Clinton’s Lap

McAuliffe-gate Lands In Hillary Clinton’s Lap

Monday:

This has nothing to do with the Clinton Foundation. This was an allegation of a gentleman who gave a check to my campaign. I didn’t bring the donor in. I didn’t bring him into the Clinton Foundation. I’m not even sure if I’ve ever met the person, to be honest with you,” [Virginia Democrat Governor Terry] McAuliffe told reporters. “I know the folks that worked at his company.”

Other shoe landing in five, four, three, two, one:

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe invited the [Red] Chinese businessman whose donations to him have been named as a focus of [Injustice, Revenge & Coverup Commissariat] investigators to a 2013 fundraiser at Hillary Clinton’s personal Washington, D.C., residence.

Wang Wenliang, a [Red] Chinese national with U.S. permanent residency, briefly shook [Mrs.] Clinton’s hand at the September 30th event, a representative for Wang told TIME. An American company controlled by Wang made a $60,000 contribution to McAuliffe’s campaign three weeks before the fundraiser. Less than a month later, a separate Wang company pledged $500,000 to the Clinton Foundation, the first of several donations that eventually totaled $2 million.

The fundraiser was one of at least three interactions between Wang and McAuliffe, according to the businessman’s representative. [emphases added]

Pay, play.

After a quarter-century of this corrupt crapola, there’s not a whole lot I can say that wouldn’t be excruciatingly redundant, so I’ll let the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review do the honors:

Wang Wenliang is a [Red] Chinese citizen. He has permanent resident status in the United States and is chairman of Dandong Port Group. Mr. Wang also controls a New Jersey construction firm whence the donation originated. While federal law prohibits foreign donations, McAuliffe says Wang’s green card entitles him to contribute.

Oh, did we mention that Wang also is a delegate to the [Red] Chinese parliament? And as Jim Geraghty makes the point in National Review Online, that makes Wang an “agent of a foreign principal.”

“I don’t care what Wang’s visa status is,” Mr. Geraghty says. “How on God’s green Earth can it be legal for [Red] Chinese government officials to donate to American candidates for governor?”

Simply put, it’s not. And this could be the tip of an iceberg, considering reports that the McAuliffe inquiry might be an outcropping of the outcropped investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email mess. McAuliffe, of course, is a dyed-in-the-wool Clinton[oid]. [emphases added]

To answer J-Ger’s rhetorical question, I don’t think it was legal for then-President Bill Clinton to accept ChiComm campaign donations back in 1996, either, but he eagerly deposited their checks anyway.  Compared to that, Governor McAuliffe’s transgression is a peccadillo.  It’s also as inevitable as the sunrise, since McAuliffe has always been a top La Clinton Nostra bagman, and nobody has any excuse to believe that he was going to put that “career” on hold when he moved into the big mansion in Richmond.

This is why, on the one hand, it baffles me as to how Donk crooks like Terry McAuliffe keep getting elected to high office in this country in areas, like Virginia, where they really shouldn’t be all that competitive, and on the other hand, the fact that they do keep getting elected reinforces the reality of how tiny a minority constitutional conservatives really are in this country.  And that was before the rise of Trumpmania torched much of what strength we had and ground we held.  The implications for November are sufficiently obvious that I feel no need to elaborate.

This should also underscore why I have adopted the hashtag #NoneOfTheAbove.  Clarity, and all that.  Not that those who huddle under its umbrella will ever get credit for it or not be smeared as “Hillary-enablers” and such rotgut, but we have left them no cover for that lie.

Exit question: Who would a President Trump have summarily executed without trial first?  McAuliffe or Wang?

UPDATE: Guess who donated twenty-five grand to Hillary’s bagman’s 2013 gubernatorial campaign?  You get three tries, and the first two don’t count.

The Trump-Sanders Debates

The Trump-Sanders Debates

Will it be a debate, or is this the PR cover for the blockbuster announcement of Trump’s vice presidential running mate?

Don’t laugh, dudes and dudettes – this may actually be happening:

Donald Trump on late Wednesday said that he is ready and willing to debate Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) for charity.

Maybe Weekend Bernie’s charities might actually see any of the proceeds.

“Yes, I am,” he said on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! “How much is he going to pay me? If he paid a nice sum toward a charity, I’d love to do that.

“If I debated him, we would have such high ratings and I think I should take that money and give it to some worthy charity,” the GOP’s presumptive presidential nominee added.

Which, in reality, will be….Donald Trump.

Would an on-stage encounter between the lunatic communist and the lunatic state corporatist do gonzo Neilson numbers?  In terms of sheer, train wreck spectacle, yeah, it probably would.

Caleb Howe has some ideas:

This is terrific news for people who think that the campaign should be a more hilarious cluster than it already is. The amount of gesturing and making of crazy faces on that stage will be near critical mass. It could only be exceeded by throwing Kasich in the mix. Frankly I embrace this idea and I think whichever network airs it should really step up and keep with the theme. I’m talking dancing girls, maybe a magician, one of those people from the San Diego zoo who tells you about snakes. Also there should be a swimsuit round, and the whole thing should be interspersed with one-on-one interviews with the candidates talking about what happened during the debate like they do on Hell’s Next Top Kitchen Survivor or whatever.

I’d only add that the moderators should be Michael Cole, Jerry “The King” Lawler, and John Bradshaw Layfield.

It tactical political terms, for Senator Sanders, why not?  It gives him fresh pub, and the Trump rub too, I guess, keeps his name and cause from fading away, and, of course, sticks it to Mrs. Clinton by hampering her ability to pivot completely to the general campaign and focus on Trump.  That benefits both men.

It will be interesting to see if Trump is his usual caustic, face-pissing self or if he’ll be “diplomatic” and even “tone himself down” to let Bernie have the spotlight to whale away at the Empress.  The latter would presumably be the tack he would take if he’s serious about out-left-flanking Herself by luring Sanders’ Nutter whackjobs into his camp in the fall.  But is he capable of it?  Does he have the acting range, much less the self-discipline, to rein in his baser reflexes even when it would be in his personal AND political interest to do so?

Looks like we’ll get a chance to find out:

Game on. I look forward to debating Donald Trump in California before the June 7th primary.

 

Here it comes….

This actually does matter, because…well, you know how I’ve been pointing out that Trump doesn’t actually want the job of the presidency but only wants to prove that he can win the election that would stick him with it?  And how I’ve speculated that once he reached the White House he would soon hate the gig and either resign once the going got the slightest bit tough (the same way that he rides business ventures into the ground, parachuting clear right before impact and leaving his suckers holding the bag) or go the Mussolini/caudillo route, be more honest about his dictatorial impulses than even Barack Obama (mainly because Trump has neither the brains nor the maturity to even try and conceal it, which is part and parcel of his horrifying unfitness for the presidency), and become the first POTUS to be impeached and removed from office by the Democrat Congress his nomination has made inevitable?  There is a third option along those lines that I had not considered, and which a top Trumper/Putinoid has now actually and deliberately given public utterance:

“The vice presidential pick will also be part of the process of proving he’s ready for the White House,’ [Paul] Manafort said.

‘He needs an experienced person to do the part of the job he doesn’t want to do. He seems himself more as the chairman of the board, than even the CEO, let alone the COO.’”

In other words, Trump wants to be a non-figureheaded constitutional monarch.  He wants to be the “brand” of the U.S. presidency, put his name and face on it, revel in its prestige and power, but have none of the actual responsibilities and duties and accountability that comes with it.  He wants all the good and none of the bad.  The boring, aggravating stuff is what he’ll have a vice president for.

From the ignorant perspective of the average Trumplican, that’s “brilliant” because they’re incapable of seeing anything their coiffed demideity does as anything else.  But it’ll also be a cudgel for them to use against us #NoneOfTheAbovers if Trump picks a heretofore credible conservative running mate – “See, see, Newt Gingrich [I know, I know, but that’s the best Trump sell-out I can come up with in this context] will be running the country, and ya can’t say he’s not a conservative Republican.  What’s your excuse for not getting in line behind Trump now, HUH?!?  HUH?!?”  Yes, folks, this is the kind of “arguments” Trumpvidians make.  Maybe not verbatim, but something like it.  Never mind that it would completely undermine their rationale for supporting Trump in the first place, never mind that that is NOT how the presidency is constitutionally set up to work, never mind that it would eviscerate his oath of office before he even took it, never mind that if the veep was running the country a President Trump should quit and let that veep succeed him, and never mind that the country would then be being led by somebody who was never elected to the office and wound up there not through tragic circumstances but be calculated, deliberate, scheming connivance.

It is, once again, in a word, bullshit.  And that is what Trumplicans demand that we embrace.  Bullshit.  Oceans of it.  Light-year-wide cosmic clouds of it.  Eat it, drink it, bathe in it, wallow in it, swim laps in it, breathe it.

Some of us say no.  Some of us don’t like bullshit.  Some of us tired of the bullshit months ago, and the more Trumplickers try to shove it down our throats, the more we are going to resist.

You know how their motivation for the past year has been “burn it all down”?  That’s moved beyond “politics as usual,” beyond the “GOPe”, beyond the conservative movement.  Now it’s about burning down the country and its founding documents and institutions.  About burning down what’s left of the Constitution.

The president of the United States is head of state and head of government.  He is not the “chairman of the board” or the CEO or the COO.  He’s all three.  If he doesn’t want the job as the Constitution defines it, he should get the bleep out of the race.

But he won’t, because the rules don’t apply to him, a concept against which Trumplicans raged incoherently when it was Obama, but now that somebody they think is from their own “tribe” is in the driver’s seat, they’ll orgasmically and tearfully rejoice in.

Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.  His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.  Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God.”

Exit question: How many veeps do you think Trump would go through in a single four-year term?  My over/under would be seven (one every six months or so).

UPDATE: Looks like Bernie called The Donald’s bluff:

Multiple sources tell @CBSnews that Trump was kidding about debating Sanders & it will never happen. (H/t @stevechaggaris and@MajorCBS)

So was Trump (1) lying or is Trump (2) a coward or (3) both?

Yes.

But Trumploons will insist that Donnie “made Bernie look!”

It does go to reinforce yet again that nothing Trump says is ever serious, reliable, or trustworthy.  You’d think that would make it pointless to listen or pay attention to him and people would have long since lost interest and ignored him.  That the opposite is the case speaks volumes about not just the GOP but the United States of America as well.

UPDATE II: Sounds like Bernie knows how to speak Trumpese:

Well, I think there’s starting to be some back-channel discussions. I do hope — I saw that thing last night, and it seemed that Donald Trump was serious when he was talking about it. And I hope that his handlers don’t dissuade him, or that he doesn’t sort of chicken out on this. I think it would be great for the American people to be able to see these two candidates on stage, debating the important issues. [emphasis added]

With any other candidate, this sort of playground taunt would elicit nothing more than eyerolls.  But with Trump?  Let’s just say this isn’t over yet.

Eleven States Sue Obama Over Gender-Bender Decree

Eleven States Sue Obama Over Gender-Bender Decree

Well, yeah, good, I guess.  But isn’t the Regime already admitting that The One’s threat to cut off funding for any school in the country at any level if they don’t transgenderize has no legal authority?  The White House is openly bypassing Congress, the courts, the law, everything.  They’re making no attempt to hide any of it.  So how can a lawsuit stop them?:

Officials from eleven U.S. States sued the Obama administration on Wednesday, seeking to overturn a directive from the federal government that public schools [will] allow [gender impersonators] to use the bathroom matching their gender identity.

Ramping up the simmering battles over contentious cultural issues in America, the States, led by Texas, accused the federal government of rewriting laws by “administrative fiat.”

“Defendants have conspired to turn workplace and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment, flouting the democratic process, and running roughshod over commonsense policies protecting children and basic privacy rights,” the lawsuit stated.

 The lawsuit accused the federal government of overstepping its constitutional powers by taking actions that should be left to Congress or individual States.
Not Congress either, actually; nothing in the Constitution enumerates any such power to the federal government, and therefore the power to determine such issues resides, by definition, within the Original Authority of the States, in accordance with Amendment X.

But again, that’s all very-very and to-to, and I wish the Courageous Eleven Godspeed and hope they’ve done their judge-shopping due diligence, and maybe this is another one of those periodic Obama power grabs that is is over-the-top that the Regime will get slapped down at every level, including from Olympus.  I hope it is.  But none of us have any good reason to bet that way.   And nothing short of a unanimous court rebuke has ever compelled Red Barry to back down on anything.

Absent that, his imperial decree will stand, and school districts around the country – those that haven’t lost their minds, anyway – will face the choice between essentially shutting down and bending their genders.  And they will all meekly capitulate, along with the Courageous Eleven.  Because while money makes the world go ’round, it is also the chains of slavery in which Americans are now hopelessly bound.

Which is awfully useful for holding down “patients” who resist their “transitional surgery”.

Trump Trying To Bully Paul Ryan Into Endorsing Him

Trump Trying To Bully Paul Ryan Into Endorsing Him

I’ve thought about this, and I’ve thought about this, and the only thing that makes any Trumpsense is his trademark “alpha-male” dominance compulsion.  The Speaker of the House didn’t follow orders and bow the knee to him as “GOP” nominee, so now Ryan has to be forced, bulldozed, bamboozled, humiliated, and otherwise coerced into doing so, rather than letting their meeting a couple of weeks ago and time allow Ryan to face-savingly do so on his own.  Which he probably would have, especially since he’s on #NotYetTrump island pretty much by himself, and that institutional unity pressure is powerful.

But now?  Put yourself in Ryan’s position after the scam the Trump campaign pulled today:

Senior level Trump campaign sources confirmed to ABC News Wednesday that House Speaker Paul Ryan will be endorsing presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

It’s unclear when the endorsement will take place, but Ryan has a briefing on the House GOP agenda scheduled later today in Washington.

And just exactly who was this “senior-level Trump campaign source”?  None other than the Russophile himself:

House Speaker Paul Ryan has begun telling confidants that he wants to end his standoff with Donald Trump in part because he’s worried the split has sharpened divisions in the Republican Party, according to two people close to the lawmaker.

Ryan aides say nothing has been decided about a possible Trump endorsement. But Trump’s campaign manager, Paul Manafort, told a small group of Republican lawmakers Thursday that he expects Ryan to endorse the party’s nominee as early as this week, according to two people in the meeting.

“He expects” Ryan to endorse Trump this week.  Sounds almost like a threat, doesn’t it?  Not unlike Sebastian Shaw’s comment to Colonel Hendry in X-Men First Class that he “expected” that Hendry would reconsider his opposition to putting U.S. nuclear missiles in Turkey: He wasn’t expressing his hope for Hendry’s cooperation; he was telling Hendry what he was going to do, or else.

Who knows where Ryan was in this “transition” process, but how could or can he possibly endorse Trump now?  And, sure enough:

.@SpeakerRyan spox tells me: “We’ve not told the Trump campaign to expect an endorsement. He’s also not told anyone he regrets anything.”

Either Trump was making it up in an effort to force Ryan’s hand – i.e. a shame endorsement – or Ryan was going to give Trump his blessing and the latter just couldn’t allow it to look like the former was granting him the endorsement, but rather that Trump was taking it.  In other words, that “alpha-male” domination crap.  Again.  How can Ryan endorse him now, or before the convention?  One way or the other, TrumpWorld tried, completely needlessly, to make a chump out of the Speaker.  Since when is it his, and everybody else’s, “duty” to swallow their pride (and a lot more than that) to make The Donald’s colossal ego swell like Bill Clinton at an intern convention?  Remember, rapprochement and reconciliation are a two-way street or it isn’t genuine.  The former leads to unity; the latter is the kind of “unity” that Nazi Germany inflicted on France in 1940, or the Union imposed on the Confederacy at Appomattox.

For all of you out there who are willing to grant Donald Trump the “benefit of the doubt,” I want to ask you a very simple question: Why does he continue to treat “fellow” Republicans as either rivals and enemies (those that won’t submit to him) or his personal bitches (those that have submitted)?  Why does he debase and degrade and humiliate the latter for forfeiting their self-respect and demonize the former for retaining it?  Name any Republicans outside his Kool Aid brigade whom he has regarded as genuine friends and allies even if not seeing eye to eye with them on everything?  Shouldn’t that lack matter?  Isn’t it important?

The questions are all rhetorical of course, and boil down to that same common axiom: Trump gotta be Trump, and Trump is not a Republican.  And Douglas V. Gibbs expected me to “tone down” my criticism of this asshole, or stop writing about him altogether because his three-watt bulb following wanted Political Pistachio to be a Trumplican safe area?  Fuck that, and fuck them.  I’ll be in their grills 24/7 until the end of time, or this campaign, whichever comes first.

Exit question from Brad Thor:

I have been mistakenly comparing him to a potential Mussolini, and about a week ago, Foreign Affairs did an amazing article about the Caudillos – the strongmen of Latin America, and THAT is who Trump is. He is a Chavez. He is a Perőn. That is the type of guy he is, and I guarantee you… during his presidency, he is going to petition the American people to allow a temporary suspension of the Constitution, so that he can help America get back on its feet again….

With the feckless, spineless Congress we have, who will stand in the way of Donald Trump overstepping his Constitutional authority as president?

Or he won’t bother with any petitioning and will just do it.  Obama did that, after all, and his drooling lemming acolytes cheered him on.  Trump and the Trumplicans would be no different.

In any case, don’t worry. Brad; the Pelosi-Schumer Congress would impeach and remove Trump.  It would be a “deal” that Trump couldn’t refuse.

And if he tried, well, that’s the kind of violence his followers would cheer on as well.