We’re already talked a bit about how Beto O’Rourke’s admission in front of TV camera concerning taxing churches has confirmed what we’ve all known for years concerning the left. Now comes the left with the “Beto as Strawman” argument claiming that he’s a nobody, a non-entity who doesn’t really matter:
Given his low and static polling, it’s hard to tell what, exactly, Beto O’Rourke hopes to accomplish by staying in the presidential race. But while his actual goal seems a bit elusive, he is increasingly playing a very specific role: the human straw man, the embodiment of every seemingly irrational conservative fear about what the left really wants.
That’s Jordan Weissman arguing in Slate that O’Rourke’s positions aren’t actually positions of the left and all he is doing his stoking conservative fears. This is only part of his attack on Robert Francis O’Rourke
This is not the first time O’Rourke—a politician, it should be noted, without a constituency: no district, almost no support in the polls—has promised to make conservatives’ worst nightmares come true. After adopting gun control as a marquee issue following the mass shooting in El Paso earlier this year, O’Rourke promised a mandatory gun buyback program for assault weapons, memorably telling a moderator, “Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47.” Not long after, Trump and Republicans blamed his comments for making it harder to get a gun control deal done in Congress. (Yes, that’s a bit rich coming from the GOP, but I’ll come back to that).
These are not the only far-left positions Beto has staked out recently. He’s strongly pro reparations, for instance. But his comments about churches and guns are especially remarkable, in that he’s essentially adopting unpopular stances that Democratic politicians have spent years claiming are unfair caricatures of their actual beliefs. He is turning himself into a walking straw man, the non-fringe guy Republicans can reliably point to when they want to say: “See, the libs really do want to take your guns and shut down your churches.”
There are two problems with this man’s point. The 1st is highlighted by the emphasized text. It’s rather comical to see this argument given that it was the same lefty media created him out of the whole cloth, extolling Mr. O’Rourke, promoting him as “Beto” as a counter to Ted Cruz authentic ethnicity and put him up and the sign that Texas is finally turning their way. They drew millions of dollars from liberal activists all over the country in his failed effort for senate seat and then floated him as a potential presidential candidate before they knew that the Democrat field would become large enough to field a shirts vs skins Basketball game with benches for both teams.
But it’s the second point that really give the lie to the entire piece and it comes from four simple words in the 1st sentence of the piece following the embedded video (again emphasis mine):
O’Rourke’s comments drew a warm round of applause in the friendlyroom, and riled conservatives, who have spent years worrying that Democrats might try to do such a thing.
That’s the key line, the room was full of Democrat activists, the people who give the money, who put the pressure on candidates and decide who can choose to make hell for any candidate who doesn’t toe the line.
Did those activists boo or cat call that line making it clear that this is not what Democrat believe?
Did they rush to defend the black church which had for so many years been the place, despite existing tax laws where Democrats openly campaigned organized and raised money?
Did they defend conservative Muslims who have increasingly become an important part of the Democrat coalition?
And most important of all did any Democrat candidate rush to clearly state that this is completely contrary to what the Democrat party in general or they in particular believe?
The answer to all of these questions is not just no but HELL NO and the reason for this is the same as why when Joe Biden they didn’t do any of these things when Joe Biden went all in on gay marriage in 2012 because he knew that this is what the people who matter in the party believe..
Beto is playing a similar gambit. He understands that the people who matter in the party along with the college students taught by their minions in school are already at this place. He furthermore is in a can’t lose proposition for him. At worst by forcing the issue he raises his profile and lasts longer int he primaries ensuring him face time for a while. At best he’s getting some chits in for next time around and assuring himself of good speaking fees for the next four years.
There are many descriptions that can be made of these moves that are apt, but “Strawman” is not one of them, in fact “Strawman” is best used to describe those on the left who are trying to pretend that Beto’s opinions are an outlier rather than someone saying aloud what everyone knows.
Update: added link and image plus this Atlantic link via Instapundit which touches on a cost that the left, in my opinion, simply doesn’t care about.
Yesterday I linked to a an instapundit post that noted that the in a recent poll 32% of black men preferred the re-election of Trump to any democrat nominee. Yet let’s take a look at the opening lines of the story that contained this incredible information:
An overwhelming majority of black voters — 85 percent — said in a new Hill-HarrisX poll that they would choose any Democratic presidential candidate over President Trump in an election The survey, which was released on Monday, found this sentiment to be particularly true among black voters along partisan lines.
That story is from The Hill, and the headline says: “Poll: Overwhelming majority of black voters back any 2020 Democrat over Trump“. The only problem is when when you look at the actual poll vs the spin of the story it doesn’t look very good for the left. In addition to what Mr. Bernstein spotted there were two other data points that are pretty significant:
The poll sampled more that two women for every man on presidential preference. That’s over 67% women on that pol! That’s quite a gender gap!
Of the black men polled 3% were republican and 21% were independent. That means that if every single republican and independent man in the poll supported Trump then there would still be 8 percent of black Democrat men who want Trump to winin 2020.
That’s bad enough but there is something even funnier going on here: there seems to be two different pools of people being polled. The preference for president question has a sample size of 210, but the poll in general has a sample size of 1200.
Oddly enough the story doesn’t note this discrepancy let alone explain it, nor does it touch on the skew in the presidential preference question 67% women , vs everyone in the poll 57%.
I’m sure there is a perfect innocent explanation for this that I’m completely missing that has absolutely nothing to do with the attempt to convince people that the president’s economy and policies might be leading to a historic realignment that could change the face of the American political scene for decades.
After all the media would not try to manipulate the public for political reasons would they?
In 2018 I was at CPAC with my sons when the younger seeing that I was, as usual, driving myself to a ridiculous point suggested doing something different, so we went on a little trip to a pinball place in Bethesda where I found what I thought was the most significant interview of the trip.
and wrote why this interview was so significant
Now a person like my self who has covered angry mobs last year, and is constantly bathed in the political fight, not to mention the media narrative of absolute Trump / GOP hatred and constantly in the company of activists both at home and at CPAC, might expect a Democrat woman of color living in a blue state to give answers fitting the us vs them narrative, particularly if filmed and in the presence of her friends. She did not. She gave the President mixed marks, complemented him on keeping campaign promises that he made to his people, noted that as a Democrat she’d like to see some more moderate moves. Her answers had none of the rancor or the division that the media has pushed on us for the year or that I’ve seen from angry activists. They were completely reasonable answers that would not have been out of place several decades ago in a saner time when I remembered people could disagree and get along. In other words they reflected who she is, a normal American trying to get by whose primary focus is real life instead of manufactured outrage.
Remember this was 2018, Mueller was still out there, plenty of people thought there was lot of “there” there. Stormy Daniels was still out there as was the creepy porn lawyer. In fact we were still in the pre-Kavanaugh era. In other words the entire spectacle had not yet blown up on the left.
This interview, given in public on film in front of friends made me draw two conclusions, the second being the most significant
Despite what our media friends are trying to sell us, Regular Democrats, even democrats in a blue place like Maryland are not wedded to the Peloxi/CNN/MSNBC line and are seeing this president for what he is rather than what they are being told he is.
People like Lea are winnable and the media narrative is all about convincing us she is not.
When we got back to CPAC I couldn’t wait to upload the video and rushed to tell every person I ran into that this was incredibly important and tremendously significant. Nobody seemed to care, we were in the CPAC bubble which meant all eyes were on the pols and the activists there, not to mention the President’s upcoming speech. The idea that this might be a signal of an opening to the black community for the President and the opposition of blacks to the president might be softer than other think was something totally off everyone’s radar.
We keep hearing from the left and NeverTrump that their only concern is to remove Trump because he is a corrupt, vulgar man doing unconstitutional things etc etc etc
However despite this public claim there has been a noticeable shift to Mike Pence in their attacks, particularly by the media/cultural left. There two likely reasons for this.
Unlike POTUS it is not Pence’s nature to fight back in the same way as President Trump does. Trump is a street fighter who has no problem trolling and as his predecessor once said “hitting back twice as hard”. So instead of attacks or tweets that are absorbed by millions and can’t be ignored Pence’s counters if he gives any, are those of traditional pols which can be safely ignored, thus establishing a narrative.
If this impeachment move against Trump works (which is highly dubious although there seem to be plenty of suckers on twitter etc who think it will, that would still leave Mike Pence in the Whitehouse ready to take his share of credit for the economy, the foreign successes and more than willing to put faithful Christians on the court.
Thus any attempted take down of Donald Trump is useless to them unless it also takes down Pence. So much for the whole “protecting the constitution” bit
Granted all of this is fantasy land but if you are going to go for it in the hopes of winning in 2020, this is what you have to do.
The sudden appearance of Hillary Clinton on the political scene coupled with the latest verse of the Trump Song latest failed Trump hit that boomeranged onto Joe Biden has led some to speculate that Hillary is considering a late entry into the election 2020 race.
While I must confess this is the type of dream scenario for the GOP that would akin to Lynda Carter suddenly deciding that she simply can’t live another day without me there is an actual thing to watch for to decide if this has a basis in reality of if the GOP will wake up and find yourself with the less entertaining prospect of being perfectly happy in destroying the current Democrat field in 2020.
You see if Hillary is just trying to bait people and perhaps cause folks with power and influence to think she’s coming back in, she would do what she’s doing and hope that enough people decide it is worth throwing a few tens of thousands the way of the Clinton foundation as a cheap form of insurance.
But with Bernie on the ropes due to heart issues and Biden being hit by the latest attempt to target Trump the person left in the race that would have to be taken out for Hillary to have a clear field is Elizabeth Warren.
So keep an eye out over the next few weeks to see if any kids of “surprise” news comes out concerning the Senator form Massachusetts of if yet another attempted attack on Trump happens to backfire on Elizabeth Warren particularly if the source is known to be Clinton friendly.
Because if any of that happens, odds are she’s in.
Today I woke up much earlier than I expected and attend mass at my old parish where the pastor giving a sermon on today’s Gospel (Luke 9) he mentioned a fact that I’ve brought up before that the truth IS (I’m not so sure about his assertion that it doesn’t need defending but be that as it may…).
I thought about this when I saw the lead story at Drudge concerning congressman heard about congressman Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Il) hitting the president with this tweet.
It’s not all that newsworthy that the MSM is quoting a member of the GOP when they hit Trump ( in fact it’s the surest way for a member of the GOP to get positive coverage from them) but not only is the President tweet the truth, it’s a rather important truth that needs to be stated aloud at the start.
All of this points to the necessity of Trump but there is one other factor that I think is even more decisive. It’s a subject I brought up a few years ago. American culture traditionally is like an old Popeye cartoon. It takes hit after hit after hit until finally it exclaims:
I think the breaking point is near, I think there are a lot of people in this country who are deciding that the Government is openly hostile to them. I think that the sight of women and gay men being beaten by leftists because they support the presumptive GOP nominee, having it happen in full sight of police ordered to do nothing AND SEEING THOSE OFFICERS CHOOSING TO LET THEM BE BEATEN means that they can not count on the authorities to obey their oaths of office if they think doing so might cost them their jobs.
Even worse than this is the obvious question it raises: If leftists are willing to resort to violence and boast about it before an election when it might hurt their ability to persuade the people to vote for them, how much more willing will they be to violently suppress their political foes when such behavior is rewarded with electoral victory by the people? What will that tell a populace that has already been arming itself nonstop for the last 4-6 years?
Remember I wrote this piece on July 3rd 2016 and the piece it links to with the Popeye cartoon is from June 14 2013!
Now ask yourself this question: Has the behavior of the left gotten better or worse since 2013, since 2016? When you’re done with that question ask yourself the follow-up to the point I made above concerning political violence:
If the left/media and their allies are able to remove a sitting president after:
Smearing folks like Justice Kavanaugh without anything approaching credible evidence
Forcing members of the administration out of public places such as restaurants
An attempt to murder republican congressmen which led to a GOP house leader being shot,
The Beating of a sitting senator, leading to serious injury
And repeated violence by masked thugs in cities like Portland Ore and elsewhere and justification of said violence by dubbing their foes “Nazis” and “White Supremacists”
What will they conclude about such behavior? They’ll decide it works!
Furthermore if they are willing to make this attempt before an election when it might hurt their ability to persuade the people to vote for them (as I suspect it did in 2016) and it works, how much more bold will they be about suppressing their political foes through both lawfare and violence after all of this is rewarded by the removal of the only man who has been willing to stand in their way?
Don’t think for a minute that Americans who have been arming themselves for the last decade and are now being openly told by candidates that they intend to disarm them, don’t know the answers to those questions.
So with all due respect to the sensitivities of the congressman from Illinois I think if this is going to be done, it needs to be done with eyes wide open as to it’s costs and risks thus it’s not only quite proper for the President to bring this up it’s highly necessary for him to do so.
Closing Thought: I suspect the left doesn’t see these risks or as I mentioned in this tweet the comfortable snowflakes are too foolish or too ignorant to care if such a civil war comes, perhaps because they all believe the 16 year old prophet of doom that the world will end before they’re 50 anyways.
The media and the left have gone all in on it as they have every single time and like every other time not only is there no “there” there but even if they thought this Ukraine stuff had legs there is no time for a full investigation before the election.
That being the case, why are they even considering going all in on this, the answer is simple:
The know they are toast in Election 2020.
With the economy going strong, the president’s popularity soaring and trust in the complicit media at an all time low they understand that their chances of winning next November were slim to begin with and with the clown show of candidates all dying to give free healthcare to illegal aliens and tax the hell out of businesses Slim just left town.
An impeachment inquiry is a roll of the dice, a last desperate chance to energize and placate the base while holding back a vote that will doom them in the house.
The whole “impeachment inquiry” will be all about her getting the time to make that calculation and if she decides that a vote will cost her the congress she can declare that there is simply not enough evidence to move forward or that it’s too close to the election for the vote
If it actually comes to a vote expect it to be close, you can be sure that Pelosi will calculate that Democrats who are in most danger of an AOC inspired challenger will vote “yes’ while those in most danger of losing a seat due in a swing district if they support impeachment will vote “no”.
Nancy Pelosi understands that it’s a long chance, but like General Lee who was in command the last time Democrats tried to overthrow the government she also understands that she can’t win without long chances. So here we are.
But do not doubt for a minute that if these jokers thought they could win in 2020, they would sit back and let events take it’s course. This is as desperate a roll of the dice as Picket’s Charge and will likely have the same amount of success:
Final thought, ironically also like Picket’s charge the idiots who lead this suicidal political move will be celebrated by Democrats for generations.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi launched a formal impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump on Tuesday, acquiescing to mounting pressure from fellow Democrats and plunging a deeply divided nation into an election year clash between Congress and the commander in chief.
The probe centers on whether Trump abused his presidential powers and sought help from a foreign government for his reelection. Pelosi said such actions would mark a “betrayal of his oath of office” and declared: “No one is above the law.”
At issue are Trump’s actions with Ukraine. In a summer phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, he is said to have asked for help investigating Democrat Joe Biden and his son Hunter. In the days before the call, Trump ordered advisers to freeze $400 million in military aid for Ukraine — prompting speculation that he was holding out the money as leverage for information on the Bidens. Trump has denied that charge, but acknowledged he blocked the funds. (…)
Trump advisers say they are confident that an impeachment process led by the opposition party will bolster his political support heading into his reelection campaign.
This morning, before the probe announcement, the president tweeted that he’ll release the transcript of the phone call.
I suspect that this will bite the Democrat Party on the backside. Or probe said backside. The president has a preternatural way of causing his enemies to fall into their own self-dug pits.
Meanwhile, if you want confirmation of the fact that other forces are at work, look no further than President Trump’s words at the UN summit days ago. Look to who he defends.
President Trump told all gathered at this year’s UN Summit: “Today, with one clear voice, the United States of America calls upon the nations of the world to end religious persecution.”
“We’re standing up for almost 250 million Christians around the world who are persecuted for their faith. It is estimated that 11 Christians are killed every day for the following — I mean, just think of this: Eleven Christians a day, for following the teachings of Christ. Who would even think that’s possible in this day and age? Who would think it’s possible?”
“The United States is founded on the principle that our rights do not come from government; they come from God, Trump reminded the assembly. “This immortal truth is proclaimed in our Declaration of Independence and enshrined in the First Amendment to our Constitution’s Bill of Rights. Our Founders understood that no right is more fundamental to a peaceful, prosperous, and virtuous society than the right to follow one’s religious convictions.
“Regrettably, the religious freedom enjoyed by American citizens is rare in the world.
“Approximately 80 percent of the world’s population live in countries where religious liberty is threatened, restricted, or even banned. And when I heard that number, I said, ‘Please go back and check it because it can’t possibly be correct.’ And, sadly, it was. Eighty percent.
“As we speak, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, Yazidis, and many other people of faith are being jailed, sanctioned, tortured, and even murdered, often at the hands of their own government, simply for expressing their deeply held religious beliefs. So hard to believe.”
The Trump administration Monday declared to U.N member nations that there is no “international right” to abortion, and called on other countries to fight efforts promoting abortions, drawing criticism from reproductive rights groups and other world nations.
President Trump has the unique distinction among pro-life presidents of actually doing something to keep the money of American citizens out of Planned Parenthood’s coffers. So this is more that mere words.
I don’t claim to know anything about the president’s relationship with God. I do know, however, that the president is standing up for most of the things that God cares about and that many of those who seek his removal from office also seek more death. And, just to top things off, they want us to fund the destruction.
So I think that the battle we cannot see is the one that fuels the one we can.
Remember, this isn’t about Donald Trump, it’s about us — the people of the United States. It’s about what kind of country we want this nation to be.
Next year, we’ll see the results of these battles, both political and spiritual.
You might remember the cheerleaders who were in trouble for unfurling a Trump banner at a game. That caused some fuss and with word that parents were planning to attend with American flags, what does the district do cancel the next game:
Ask yourself one question. If the banner had been a global warming banner, or a LGBTQ banner or an Obama banner how would the media have reacted? Would there be any other story in the news?
Beto O’Rourke’s “we’re going to take your guns” comments are causing a lot of fear and grief, among Democrats who privately would love to say what he said but knows that it would destroy them. In fact I would wager that there are several house seats and senate seats that are going to go GOP this year thanks to that statement.
Oh and while we’re on the subject, how can you buy back what you don’t own? This is Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce
Many years ago I covered a protest against Chick-Fil-A back in the days when there was only one location in the state. Ten years after the left decided to make them public enemy number one they are now the #3 restaurant chain in the US and have more than doubled sales.
Just for the record if I was in school and it was made clear that the school, the news media and the whole world would celebrate me if I skipped for a day, I’d jump on that bandwagon laughing my ass off…until my parents found out and then I’d get off in a hurry.
So let’s not pretend that this climate protest was anything but a stunt
The latest verse in the “I’m the MSM I am song” is apparently bad news for Never Trump republicans as it has the potential to hurt Joe Biden by opening him up to scrutiny that he can’t handle and put them in the position of having to either support a Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren or stay home.