Saturday, August 08, 2015

Scattershooting the unblogged after a very busy week

(More post-debate Trump developments below.)

-- Thanks to Kuff for plugging the petition to the NFL's powers that be to relocate the 2017 Super Bowl if HERO can't clear the bar in November.  World class cities aren't run by bigots and homophobes.  And when an offensive lineman clips a linebacker, or a defensive back commits pass interference, the whole team gets penalized, not just the infractor.  Sign it and share it.  It's already making waves.

The effort to recruit Beyonce' Knowles to the cause also continues to gain momentum.

-- The Green Party of the United States (GPUS) will hold its 2016 presidential nominating convention in Houston next August.  This is kind of a big deal.  Jill Stein, the most recent and also presumptive nominee (though she has competition) has visited Houston twice previously, in 2012 and earlier this year.  Both times she had a full itinerary and full houses at scheduled stops, and raised a lot of money (okay, a little money, but a lot by GP standards).  And both Stein and Bernie Sanders are clearly aware of the value of going into the lion's den of the South to break the stranglehold of the conservative populists.  And it also helps people lose their fear of the S-word.

-- Donald Trump spent most of yesterday feuding on Twitter and teevee with debate moderator Megyn Kelly, conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer, and RedState proprietor Erick Erickson, whose annual convention of the freakiest of the freak right wing is taking place this weekend.

GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump said Friday he can't recall using words such as "dog," ''fat" and "disgusting" to insult women he believes have slighted him, but such language litters his Twitter feed and other public comments he's made for years.

The issue took center stage at the first Republican debate of the 2016 campaign for president, when Fox News moderator Megyn Kelly asked Trump about his use of such language and whether it reflected the "temperament of a man we should elect as president."

Trump largely dismissed Kelly's question at the debate, but on Friday he went directly after her.

Before dawn, he had retweeted a post calling Kelly a "bimbo." The post was later deleted, but on Friday evening Trump called Kelly a "lightweight."

"She's not very tough and not very sharp," Trump said during a phone interview on CNN. "I don't respect her as a journalist."

Referring to Kelly's questions during the debate, Trump said, "There was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever."

Citing that remark, conservative commentator Erick Erickson said he was withdrawing his invitation for Trump to appear at his RedState Gathering in Atlanta on Saturday. "I just don't want someone on stage who gets a hostile question from a lady and his first inclination is to imply it was hormonal," Erickson wrote on the RedState website Friday night. "It just was wrong."

Erickson knows misogyny; he's the guy who coined the term "Abortion Barbie".  Update: Trump "clarifies" that he meant her nose, and calls everyone who thought he was referring to another part of her anatomy "deviants".

Trump's campaign responded: "This is just another example of weakness through being politically correct. For all of the people who were looking forward to Mr. Trump coming, we will miss you. Blame Erick Erickson, your weak and pathetic leader."

Besides what's obvious about these tirades of his, the fact remains that he can say them and Tweet them and pay no political price for doing so, unlike any other Republican running for president.  What Erickson is trying to do by shutting him out is to assert some control over Trump, a contest of wills that I wouldn't bet on just yet.  Reince Priebus is a eunuch at this point; the GOP establishment is Erickson now.  Even Rush Limbaugh is on Trump's side.  If the insiders don't do something now to slow his roll, the attacks just might make him stronger, and more difficult to defeat later.

This is what civil war looks like.

Make no mistake; The Donald is uniquely qualified to tear the Republican Party down to the bedrock under its foundation.  No matter whether he emerges as its nominee or runs as a third party independent, the GOP is already cooked for 2016 as it relates to the presidency.

And this may be the long-awaited earthquake fault line along which the Republicans crack in two.  It's the same fissure I'm trying to drive a wedge in with my HERO/Super Bowl petition.  Moderate, pro-business Republicans who are socially tolerant are continually being cleaved away from the radical Tea Party extremists.  Look at what's happening in the Texas Legislature for more clues to the future.

Except for Trump, there just wasn't all that much stupid and crazy going on last Thursday night.  Most of the ten-member varsity debaters looked weak, with Marco Rubio a notable exception (and the same for Carly Fiorina during the Happy Hour).  If the GOP nominated those two -- or to use another formidable example, John Kasich and Condoleeza Rice -- then Hillary Clinton and Julian Castro might be in real electoral trouble.

Don't worry; neither of those is happening.  And even if they did, Donald Trump as an indy would swamp their kayaks.

Update: More on the Trumpenstein Monster from No More Mister Nice and Oliver Willis.

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