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Presidential Horse Race 2016: It’s official, the elites can’t stand Trump OR his supporters

For months political commentators have been discussing the phenomena that is the Donald Trump voter. The popular media narrative suggests the folks who are most likely to back Trump are white, old, poorly educated, probably racist, terrified of homosexuals and hopelessly ignorant as to the great advancements in civilization Obama and the Democrats have inflicted on America in the past eight years.

Needless to say, according to liberal conventional wisdom, these same Trump troops are wholly unaware of Trump rallyHillary Clinton’s bona fides as well. What a backwards group these Trump people must be in questioning the wisdom of the ruling class.

One group Trump isn’t getting much support from is DC insiders. Polls in various places show Crooked Hillary with a lead of varying degrees, but perhaps nowhere in the United States is her margin larger than with the elite class near the nation’s capital.

Timothy P. Carney of the Washington Examiner reports, “Beltway insiders prefer Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump by overwhelming margins, a new poll conducted by Echelon Insights for the Washington Examiner reveals.

“Democrat Hillary Clinton won 62 percent of Washington elites polled, compared to 22 percent supporting Republican nominee Donald Trump. Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson pulled in 3 percent, while the remainder (14 percent) said they would support some other candidate, not vote, or were undecided. (The poll was conducted before conservative independent Evan McMullin entered the race.)”

So…Crooked Hillary leads Trump with the inside-the-beltway crowd by forty points. I bet Karl Rove is in the Hillary group too, though he would naturally demand anonymity for any participation in the survey.

Carney notes that the survey sample consisted of 400 Washington area residents who read and watch the news daily. In other words, a collection of folks who are well indoctrinated in beltway-speak and live in a fantasy bubble where the economy is always good (because of the presence of so many well paid federal employees and contractors) and the problems associated with excessive government are “somewhere else” in flyover country.

Having lived in the DC area for nearly half my life, I can see why the people here are so insulated from real world strife. Land values are high; several of the wealthiest counties in the country are within an hour’s drive and the political power center of the world is just a metro ride away. The metro train you’re riding on may be breaking down because of a lack of upgrades over the decades but there’s tons of money everywhere you look once you get into downtown.

Carney also added that Crooked Hillary received nearly 20 percent support from the Republicans surveyed, which also makes sense. These are the same establishmentarians who thought John Boehner did a great job as Speaker and also believe the only reason Republicans can’t win nationally is because they’re too married to the conservative social agenda.

Yes, to these folks, if you don’t get onboard with same-sex marriage you automatically qualify as a homophobe and the youth of the country won’t support you.

These Republicans are also the foreign policy elites who are frightened to death that Donald Trump might not perpetuate the endless heavy U.S. military presence all over the globe. Any kind of American pullback threatens their very existence. What would they do with all their think-tank papers? Would their dreams of spreading democracy throughout the world end in a pile of ashes?

Let’s not forget about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce crowd that’s understandably frightened that their cheap labor supply would vanish if our government actually bothered to enforce the immigration laws as Trump has promised to do. Likewise, the corporatists won’t get nearly as many legal foreign workers to come in and fill the jobs of more costly Americans at places like Disney World either.

And of course this Republican group also includes the #NeverTrump contingent, though they’re not as likely to be supporting Hillary (at least openly).

The always good for a quote Erick Erickson did make the argument yesterday that a vote for Trump is really a vote for Hillary, however. Writing at The Resurgent, Erickson said, “At this point, a vote for Donald Trump is a vote for Hillary Clinton. As long as the GOP sticks with Trump, it is helping Hillary Clinton get elected. Donald Trump’s continued existence in the race is nothing more than a shield for Hillary Clinton.

“It is time for the GOP to realize that it is going to lose 2016 because Donald Trump is the nominee. It is not the #NeverTrump forces that are losing the race. It is Donald Trump himself. No amount of certain talking heads trying to bully everyone into supporting Trump will get Trump across the finish line. The sad thing is that every sane person has long realized this and all the histrionics now are for show.”

But instead of keeping up the failed argument that Trump can be replaced at this point, Erickson thinks Republicans should just abandon their nominee now and focus their resources only on House and Senate races.

The biggest problem with this line of thinking is that even with sizeable majorities in Congress for most of the past twenty years, Republicans have shown little interest in fighting the liberal agenda. Are we supposed to hope that Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell will suddenly start battling to the death over conservative principles now that Obama is gone and Hillary takes his place?

Not a chance. In reality, Trump has become the only hope for restoring some semblance of fiscal sanity to the country but also to save what’s left of an American culture that’s being trampled by political correctness and codified into law by an army (literally) of federal regulators and activist judges.

Paul Ryan has proven over and over again that he isn’t going to combat the cultural issues (such as unfettered Muslim immigration) that are the main source of deterioration in America.

Trump’s polling difficulties are solely attributable to an establishment that isn’t supporting him (as shown in the Washington Examiner survey), a media that’s stacked against him and yes, somewhat due to his own stumbles. I still believe, however, that Trump is probably the only Republican candidate who could win this year’s election because of his unique appeal to the forgotten voters who otherwise wouldn’t participate.

The elites would say John Kasich would be winning if he were the nominee. Nonsense. No establishment Republican would be competitive this year and Kasich would wilt under the media spotlight. Conservatives wouldn’t support him. He’d lose.

For better or worse, conservatives and Republicans have Donald Trump this year. The elites can’t stand him – that’s more than enough reason to get behind him today.

Does a change in tone signal a new Trump strategy to win?

Donald Trump delivered a foreign policy speech on Monday that carefully laid out the scope of the terrorist threat facing our country and more importantly, what he proposes to do about it if elected president.

It was a good speech delivered in typical Trump fashion, even if he was reading from a teleprompter. In the text, Trump of course wasn’t afraid to name names and he was pretty hard on Obama, Crooked Hillary and the Democrats.

In other words, it was the kind of speech party nominees give when running for president.

What I noticed from watching the video of the speech was a Trump that’s changed/evolved quite a bit from his earliest days on the campaign trail. Gone was the bombast, over-the-top personal attacks and grandiose bragging. It was a more subdued and serious Trump. Dare I say it, maybe even presidential?

At any rate, it occurred to me Trump is earnestly trying to tone down the verbosity that has gotten him in so much trouble of late. We’ve seen the more subdued tenor in the past, probably most notably during his acceptance speech at the Republican convention last month.

But I think there’s a deeper motive at hand here. Trump figures he needs to tone it down to win.

Rebecca Berg of Real Clear Politics writes, “Recent surveys suggest that Trump’s polarizing rhetoric has factored into his sagging support. In a Bloomberg Politics poll published last week, 56 percent of respondents said they were bothered ‘a lot’ by Trump’s rebuke of Khizr Khan, the father of a Muslim American soldier killed in Iraq.

“Meanwhile, Trump’s campaign has not put a framework in place to amplify more favorable messages and win the support of undecided voters. It has only just begun to open a few offices in battleground states, and the campaign has yet to spend any money on television advertising during the general election.”

Berg’s story contains a couple quotes from Trump supporters promising that the campaign’s just starting to ratchet up and we haven’t seen anything yet.

The media is passing off this new tone as just another campaign reboot, but I think that’s too simple to be true. Ever the competitor, Trump clearly sees that the way he’s been handling things since the Democrat convention has not brought about any success.

It’s causing him to fall behind, too. Trump doesn’t do well as the horse running with the pack waiting to make a move; he’s a natural frontrunner who simply isn’t accustomed to making up ground at the end with a superior kick.

As the consummate winner, Trump will do what it takes to prevail. If toning it down means winning in the end, that’s what he’ll do. He may not admit that that’s what he’s doing, but Trump doesn’t want his lifelong legacy to be that of a loser who refused to bend to the rules of the game in order to win.

Crooked Hillary adapts all the time, sometimes within the same speech. Anyone who’s heard her phony southern drawl when speaking to black audiences knows she can turn it on and off at a moment’s notice. Such tactics seem to sway the gullible.

Trump will change his style without pandering. He can still be himself…and hopefully stick to the issues as well. After all, winning is what’s important, right?

Trump critics responding well to the softer spoken, tough talking Trump

It didn’t take long for Donald Trump to start reaping the benefits of his “new” tone and get-tough anti-terror policies that he articulated in his Monday speech. Trump’s address even engendered positive feedback from a couple of the nominee’s most stubborn critics.

Nick Gass of Politico reports Sen. Lindsey Graham really liked the speech. “Lindsey Graham offered high praise Tuesday for Donald Trump's major counterterrorism speech, pronouncing the Republican nominee's call for ‘extreme vetting’ of immigrants to the United States as a ‘necessity’ while applauding the way he picked apart President Barack Obama's record.”

Graham went on to say he particularly liked the way Trump made the case against Obama’s foreign policy in a prosecutorial manner. But Graham also said in a separate interview that he still isn’t going to vote for Trump (not for Hillary either, which is little consolation).

I’ve said it many times and I’ll say it again, no one really cares what Lindsey Graham says or does, but it’s refreshing to see that at least when Trump does something good, the South Carolina senator is eager to compliment him on it.

The same can’t be said of most #NeverTrumpers. So on balance, it’s a positive.

Graham wasn’t the only one to give Trump a shout out. Again, Gass reports in Politico, “Donald Trump still does not have the ‘full-throated’ support of Rep. Steve King, but the Republican nominee's counterterrorism speech on Monday has made the influential Iowa conservative more keen on the Manhattan businessman.

“’I'll say it this way: I'm more enthusiastic after I read his speech on defeating the ideology. He's really the first candidate that’s uttered those words, defeat the ideology of radical Islamic terrorism,’ King said in a telephone interview with CNN on Tuesday.”

Like with Graham, King didn’t indicate he’d changed his position on Trump’s candidacy, but it certainly looks like the Ted Cruz supporter will be onboard by November.

If – and I mean if – Trump is able to carry on a more “prosecutorial” tone and keeps saying more of the things a regular Republican would say, does that mean Trump holdouts like John Kasich are going to come out from hiding and actually say they support him?

Kasich was the one who repeatedly mentioned Trump’s tone as the reason why he couldn’t support his own party nominee. If that changes, is there room for icy hearts to melt?

How about Ted Cruz? Cruz’s non-endorsement of Trump a month ago nearly brought down the house at the Republican convention, but since that time there’s been a noticeable silence from the Texas senator.

I expect that lack of comment will continue for some time, but when the debates roll around and people are really focused on the presidential race, will we see some movement from Cruz in the same way we might be seeing it from Graham and King?

Time will tell.

Crooked Hillary’s pandering to the most gullible and uninformed continues unabated

Finally today, Crooked Hillary Clinton doesn’t give many press conferences and all of her non-rally media appearances seem tightly edited for content and length, but there’s one particular message medium that the Democrat nominee appears to have taken a liking to of late – publishing op-eds.

Naturally, Hillary loves editorials because she can fib her way through the entire presentation and no one gets a chance to ask her anything in response.

Mark Hensch of The Hill reports on her latest musings, “Hillary Clinton is reaching out to millennial voters, praising them for embodying ‘everything that is most right with America.’

“Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, wrote an ode to the younger generation in an op-ed for Teen Vogue published Tuesday.”

As I reported the other day, a recent poll shows Clinton leading Trump by 36 points with this age group, demonstrating that the only people who are more clueless than millennials when it comes to this year’s election are the ruling class DC elites I discussed above (who put Clinton at a 40 point lead).

Granted I didn’t read the whole Clinton article, but the quotes in Hensch’s piece from Crooked Hillary’s op-ed have to qualify as the most blatantly obvious pandering sell-job of the entire campaign. Leave it to Hillary to play to the ignorance of the least informed amongst us to try and buy votes. Pathetic.

Last week Clinton penned a similar sickeningly false op-ed touting her championing of religious freedom around the globe and had it published by a Mormon-owned newspaper in Utah. To keep people from laughing too hard at the notion Hillary favors religious liberty, at least she didn’t utter the words herself, instead preferring to use the cold stale neutrality of newsprint.

In employing the same medium for young voters, Hillary is telling them everything they want to hear without any chance to contradict her point-of-view.

If they could reply, it would probably sound like this:

“How are your policies going to encourage businesses to hire us when economic growth is near zero and the national debt will reach $20 trillion within a year or two?”

“Who is going to end up paying for your refugee resettlement program?”

“Hillary, are you planning to offer my parents a tax credit so we can get the basement remodeled to provide me a living space after college when I can’t find work? How much can they deduct for my purchase of a half dozen Taylor Swift and Miley Cyrus posters?”

Or lastly, “Hillary, when you say we’re everything that’s right with America, is that simply because we’re so busy playing on social media that we don’t notice the world is falling apart around us?”

We all know Crooked Hillary is an accomplished liar and is afraid to face the public. But why isn’t the news media doing their jobs in exposing this kind of garbage?

The country deserves better. Trump may be gaffe-prone but at least he’s accessible.

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Fiorina Wants Trump to Get Attention

It is lost on some Trump supporters that Ted Cruz, in his convention speech, actually endorsed a candidate for President: the candidate that Donald Trump could become.

Cruz voiced his desire for political leaders that love liberty more than government power, and that could comply with dictates of the voter’s conscience. To their credit, Trump and many of his supporters recognized immediately that Trump did not fit Cruz’s criteria. They railed that Cruz did not endorse Trump. To their discredit, they did not seem to want Trump to conform to the Cruz criteria for endorsement. Instead, they ignored his criteria, and chose to ridicule Cruz, claiming he made a politically fatal mistake.

Now that Trump the candidate seems to have seen the light and is demonstrating more maturity, humility, and self-control; features that help to qualify in the conservative voter’s conscience criteria; honorable conservatives must herald the Republican candidate as a contender for their support, as Carly Fiorina has begun to do.

Donald Trump gave an important speech last night that got far too little attention.

When he consistently articulates a conservative agenda, he will become a contender for principled conservatives’ endorsement.