Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Big political events this week

-- Obama's final State of the Union address is tonight.  He intends to burnish his legacy, as lame ducks do.  How's he done in the past seven years with respect to promises kept?

-- Fresh polling has both the Democrats and the Republicans nervous as turkeys at Thanksgiving.  Both parties' establishment caucuses are busy strategizing Plan Bs.  Here's the 'shock me' nut graf for the Blue Team:

Because of the weakness Hillary is showing in the polls, Wall Street is thinking of backing another Democrat to stop Bernie, who obviously would be their worst nightmare.  Names mentioned this morning: Biden, Kerry and Bloomberg.

I still don't think Hillary is going to be denied the nomination even if she loses both Iowa and New Hampshire, which are neck-and-neck today.  But she's definitely a frog in a pot on the stove with the burner set to 'high'.  I believe she'll  jump out of hot water when she goes after Bernie on his gun stance in this coming Sunday's debate (as I wrote at the end of this post).  But H.A. Goodman is coming to his rescue, digging out some old quotes where she describes herself as a "pro-gun churchgoer".  So it's possible that chameleon Clinton is going to have change her colors once more.

Update: ICYMI there was an Iowa forum yesterday, sponsored by Fusion for black and brown Democrats, with all three candidates participating.  Did you catch it?  Did you even know about it?  If you didn't, thank Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

-- South Carolina will be pivotal for the Repugs as well, because Ted Cruz is going to come from behind in Iowa and Donald Trump will rebound in New Hampshire.  Trump still shows a small lead in the Hawkeye State, but they caucus there and his fans are too busy to show up for him.  Cruz, on the other hand, holds the evangelicals in his hands FTW.

I am enjoying the way they snipe at each other, however.  Trump played the birther card on Cruz; it went national again with screeching on both sides of the "is he eligible" question.  Trump is now playing Springsteen's "Born in the USA" at his rallies, while Cruz responds with a Tweet of the YouTube of Fonzie jumping the shark.

Happy days are here again.

-- The next GOP debate is Thursday night and Rand Paul and Carly Fiorina both got demoted to the JV team.  And Rand won't play at the kid's table.

"An artificial designation as being in the second tier is something we can't accept," (Paul) told CNN on Monday. "I won't participate in anything that's not the first tier."

Rand's the first man out after Iowa.  As New York Mag reminds, the year of the libertarian Republican has been eclipsed by the year of the fascist one.

Update: Moron Majority has debate questions for the remaining participants.  A few...

Donald Trump – “Not much is known about your wife, Melania. How do you think your supporters, especially evangelicals, would react knowing that  if you were elected, she would be the first First Lady to have posed nude?”

Ted Cruz – “Why does everyone hate you? Even your old college roommate, Craig Mazin, said,“I would rather have anybody else be the president of the United States. Anyone. I would rather pick somebody from the phone book.”

Jeb Bush – “Do you regret not having listened to the words of your mother when her advice to you about running for president was: don’t?”

And Republican Talking Head John Feehery could vote for Trump because "nothing suggests he is a racist", but NOT for Cruz because he's "the new Nixon".  If that doesn't tell you how discombobulated the GOP is right now...


Gadfly said...

This latest Goodson piece clearly indicates both the man's insight within Dem politics and his lack of insight for still refusing to think or talk outside the 2-party box.

Gadfly said...

On the primaries, if Cruz wins in Iowa, the Donald in NH, but Rubio keeps above double-digit water, a win for him in SC really makes it interesting, as long as Trump keeps his head above double-digit water in the South. If Kasich can keep lurking as the sensible for this year's GOP candidate in the background (ie, staying ahead of Jeb!) he can stick around a while himself.

PDiddie said...

Spot on about Goodman. He gets it and doesn't get it simultaneously, which makes reading his pieces a real exercise. I have to parse him carefully to accurately determine the point at which he goes off the rails.

Rubio is third in IA but fourth in NH behind Christie (within the MoE) and should fare better in SC. That's a three-horse race headed for Texas and Super Tuesday's other primaries on March 1.

Gadfly said...

Assuming Jeb! hangs around until Super Tuesday, does what's left of the Bush legacy in Texas, and the Bush family, help him that much vis-a-vis Cruz?

And, if Christie winds up fourth, not third, in NH, how long does he hang? I assume through Super Tuesday, still, but can't see him doing a lot.

And, will Squirrel Hair follow daddy and decide to try to run Libertarian? Personally, I doubt it; I think he knows he's not hardcore enough for them.

PDiddie said...

Re: Bush... nothing.

Latest TexTrib poll from November shows Trump and Cruz tied, with Carson third and Rubio 4th with 9%. Bush has half Rubio's total at 4%, same as Paul and Fiorina.

I last talked about Christie a month ago. Abridged version: It's New Hampshire or bust for him. He really needs to finish second there to make anything happen.

Kasich is on my radar for vice-prez and that's all.

Paul's not going Libertarian; he's got a Senate seat to defend this year.

Gadfly said...

I forgot Squirrel Hair's Senate seat was this year; was thinking it was 2018, for some reason.

Remember what you wrote about Gov. Bridge, and I agree.

That said, that Trib poll is pretty stale. I know Dr. Pharaoh isn't at 9 percent still, and somebody else has picked up those percentage points. But, who?

PDiddie said...

Somebody may poll Texas before the month is out, but certainly by mid-to ate February. Our numbers here will be influenced greatly by what happens in IA, NH, NV, and SC, and there will be a few dropouts between now and March 1.