Gregory:  Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?

Sherlock Holmes:  To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.

Gregory:  The dog did nothing in the night-time.

Sherlock Holmes:  That was the curious incident

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sliverblaze

 

Yesterday I talked about why the Donald Trump Speech was a success and why the GOP should take him seriously. Today I’m going to tell you why you GOP voter might want to be a little cautious about the entry of Mr. Trump in the race.

At first glance Trump’s speech seemed to be full of Conservative Red meat.

On ISIS:

Nobody would be tougher on ISIS than Donald Trump. Nobody.

I will find — within our military, I will find the General Patton or I will find General MacArthur, I will find the right guy. I will find the guy that’s going to take that military and make it really work. Nobody, nobody will be pushing us around.

against illegal immigration

I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.

on debt

we’re very close — that’s the point of no return. $24 trillion. We will be there soon. That’s when we become Greece. That’s when we become a country that’s unsalvageable. And we’re gonna be there very soon. We’re gonna be there very soon.

on the saudi’s

But look at that border with Saudi Arabia. Do you really think that these people are interested in Yemen? Saudi Arabia without us is gone. They;re gone.

on China

When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let’s say, China in a trade deal? They kill us. I beat China all the time. All the time.

Obamacare:

We have a disaster called the big lie: Obamacare. Obamacare.

Yesterday, it came out that costs are going for people up 29, 39, 49, and even 55 percent, and deductibles are through the roof. You have to be hit by a tractor, literally, a tractor, to use it, because the deductibles are so high, it’s virtually useless. It’s virtually useless. It is a disaster.

and if you don’t like Obama he was all over him

I will immediately terminate President Obama’s illegal executive order on immigration, immediately.

Furthermore if you are a conservative and don’t like Jeb Bush (and based on my Poison poll a lot of conservatives don’t this line might appeal to you:

But in all of the words that he spoke during those 55 minutes and all the critiques he gave of how America is run and how it should be run there was a word missing: trump1 Can’t see it, I’ll blow that section up for you. trump2 In over 6500 words in 50+ minutes, he didn’t have a single thing to say about Hillary Clinton, Zip Zero Nada. Don’t you think that if you’re running for the GOP nomination you might in 50 minutes find time to hit the democrat front-runner? Unless of course you’ve given thousands to her campaigns in the past….

 

And if you are hoping to be the man to bring the fight to Hillary in the fall you might at least bring up some of her scandals, for example the use of the Clinton Foundation money, unless of course you’ve given big money to it in the past….

This is a glaring omission for a person running for the GOP nomination and it rings alarm bells all over the place in my mind.

I find myself asking these questions:

What is to stop Donald Trump from playing stalking horse for the Democrats, hitting GOP candidates particularly on social issues all over the campaign trail and in every interview he gets.  What if he acts like a soundbyte machine for the Democrat party?

What is to stop Donald Trump,  who happily supported Barack Obama in 2008 from spending his entire time on the GOP debate stage not extolling his own virtues, but  hitting the rest of the GOP candidates while leaving Hillary Clinton alone?  What’s to stop him from doing the work that a Candy Crowley will no longer be allowed by the GOP to do?

What is to stop Donald Trump if denied the GOP nomination, if denied the speaking spot he wants at the convention, if he develops a grudge against the eventual GOP nominee or if he wants to just feed his ego, from going the Ross Perot route running as a 3rd party candidate and dividing the vote to give Hillary the White House?

All of these things are a real danger and party in general and whoever wins the nomination in particular (presuming it’s not Trump, he does in fact have a shot) will have to do enough to keep Donald on board without caving into his ego.

That’s going to take a lot of skill and a lot of Brains on the part of the GOP and their nominee.

Uh Oh.

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Earlier today I spoke about how the MSM has hit Donald Trump after he announced the official beginning of his run for president today.  A great example is Allahpundit:

One: Consultants have convinced him that voters are split so many ways among so many candidates this time that he could shock the world by winning an early state with, say, 15 percent of the vote based on name recognition alone. That’s unlikely — his unfavorable rating among Republicans stands at 57 percent, easily the worst for any presidential candidate from either party in 35 years — but futility won’t stop consultants from telling a guy with nine billion dollars what he wants to hear.

My friend Ladd Ehlinger is more blunt:

I suspect that many people in the media and even more of the people already running agree with that tweet but I submit an suggest that to make that assumption is a mistake.  Consider the following.

1.  Donald Trump has sufficient personal assets to outspend every single presidential candidate on both sides.

2.  Donald Trump  because of his funds has the ability to hire enough people to make sure he is on EVERY primary ballot before the convention.

3.  Donald Trump has sufficient funds to make a lot of trouble for any state level or even federal level candidate who speaks out against him.

And there is one other factor consider this:

sanders twitter

Bernie Sanders 66k twitter followers

 

walker twitter

Scott Walker 141k twitter followers

jeb twitter

Jeb Bush 204K twitter followers

 

santorum twitter

Rick Santorum 232k twitter followers

perry twitter

Rick Perry 293K twitter followers

 

 

carson twitter

Ben Carson 356k twitter followers

huckabee twitter

Mike Huckabee 368k twitter followers

 

fiorina twitter

Carly Fiorina 371k twitter followers

 

ted cruz twitter

Ted Cruz 416k twitter followers

paul twitter

Rand Paul 630k twitter followers

rubio twitter

Marco Rubio 747k twitter followers

and now consider Donald Trump

trump twitter

2.9 MILLION.  He has more people following him on twitter than all the candidates above combined except Rubio & Paul and easily has more than double of the two of them combined.  In fact there is only one person in the race that has more followers than him….

hillary clinton twitter

And she is considered the person to beat.

“But DaTechGuy”, you might ask, “in the words of the afore mentioned Hillary Clinton:  ‘What difference does it make?'” After all just because he is a celebrity doesn’t mean people will turn out to vote for him.

My answer is it makes a ton of difference.

1.  It means his campaign  can get an unfiltered message out to nearly 3 million people instantly, without worrying about what the media will say.  In one tweet his words will reach almost as many people as CNN, MSNBC & Fox draw in primetime COMBINED. 

2.  It means that he is reaching a lot of people who will not normally vote in a GOP primary if he can draw or persuade even a fraction of those people to the polls it will change a lot.

3. As you might have noted from his base speech Trump is not shy about hitting the other people in the GOP race, what do you think will happen if he spends months defining various GOP candidates to millions of people at once?

4.  Even if he tweets out something that is complete BS more people will read it than the number of people that will read any person disputing it

Take a look a the trending topics by city today (via trend topics).  Donald Trump is at or near the top everywhere.

One might laugh this off as unimportant buzz but do the math:

(100’s of Millions of dollars to spend) + (a reach that extends to a bunch of people who usually don’t vote.) = Chaos

Remember normally activists are important because you need boots on the ground to win but Trump can afford to pay millions who are out of work in every state to act as staff without breaking a sweat.

Think of it what happens if a Trump campaign holds Voter registration parties with free food, booze and top line acts with the only admission being a completed voter registration form?  How many people not interested in election would show up for something like this? What if he does this in every state?.  How much would that cost, and furthermore how much would it cost to pay people to drive this list of attendees to the polls on primary day?

Five Thirty Eight says Trump is the most unpopular candidate ever but if you pay people to get out the vote “walking around money” how much less would it cost to have such people stay home?

The GOP has to figure out how to handle Donald Trump his fame and celebrity and they have to do it in a careful and deliberate way, why?  Well that’s a post for tomorrow.

Update: This is exactly how to do it:

Update 2: Instalanche, thank Glenn, here is why Trump’s speech was a lot better than the MSM thinks and here are the two words missing from it that should worry the GOP, finally don’t forget to vote in the GOP poison poll round 2 and tell me who you would rather stay home than vote for.

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Today Donald Trump gave a speech announcing his candidacy for President of the United States.

A few minutes after his speech a friend of mine who is an expert on speech called me and excoriated what he saw both in content and style.  The rest of the world pretty much thought the same Doug Mataconis

In what can only be described as a 45 minute long steam of consciousness that will likely go down in history as the most bizarre Presidential announcement in American history, Donald Trump told the world today that he was running for President of the United States:

We got a rambling, Fidel Castro-esque discourse that covered everything from real estate in New York City to immigration, China, and his fellow Republican candidates. And, the classic line “I’m really rich” when Trump tried to explain why he would be immune from the pressures of lobbyists and special interests if he were to become President.

SE Cupp compared it unfavorably to the embargoed speech that he didn’t deliver

The rest of  her twitter feed is more of the same

 

To make a long story short the entire MSM’s take on Donald Trump’s speech sounded like the Movie Blazing Saddles when Bart starts singing his version of:  “I get a kick out of you.” with the MSM playing Lyle the overseer shouting:

“Hold it What the hell is that shit?”

And Just like Lyle didn’t get the joke Bart was playing on them the MSM didn’t get understand what Trump was doing.

1. They were looking for a standard announcement speech.  Trump didn’t want to give one.  Trump’s base, if he has one, consists of people who normally don’t give a damn about an election.

2. They were looking for wonk stuff that they could take apart.  Trump didn’t do wonk stuff. People don’t understand wonk stuff, don’t want to hear wonk stuff and change the channel when wonk stuff is on TV.

3.  They expected Trump to try to impress them.  Trump didn’t even try.  He knows what the media think of him.  He wanted to impress the people who are impressed by a person who has made it and made it big.

4. They expected a stage managed event.  Trump wasn’t looking to do that.  He wanted to give a speech that didn’t appear stage managed or written by a speech writer.  He wanted a speech that sounded like the guy having a beer at a barbecue with you was talking .

5.  Finally they were expecting a tight event.  Trump didn’t give one.  He understands how television works, he gave a speech specifically designed to force the networks covering him to stick with him much longer than they would have planned to do so.

Bottom line Trump speech had specific goals in mind:

1.  Reach the people who generally don’t watch this kind of speech.

2.  Hit on the themes in the language a low information voter can understand.

3.  Make a speech that the networks covering it didn’t dare leave

4.  Go long enough so people seeing it would tweet out to their friends who aren’t watching Cable News: “You’ve got to turn this on and see this” so folks would switch over from the Price is Right or the View,

5.  Make a speech that would build audience would build and hit the top of the hour so that all the news shows AND Rush Limbaugh would be talking about it at once generating buzz by the buckets.

His goal had nothing to do the reporters or networks covering him.  He wasn’t playing the game by the rules they expected, he made his own rules and made them play along. He accomplished exactly what he wanted to do in the way he wanted to do it.

In other words he punked the MSM and punked them good and just like Bart in Mel Brooks Blazing Saddles, he’s laughing at them.

Doesn’t that mean we should take him seriously?  Well that’s my next post

For those of you too young to get the reference, here is the whole scene, warning some of the language might shock the ears of 2015:

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My goal for 2015 is Twenty Two grand which will give me a nominal living doing this.

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That gets all the bills paid. (including my writers like Fausta)  If I can get to Forty Thousand I can afford to travel outside of New England and/or hire me a blogger to help me get it done.

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Two pieces of news came out yesterday that at first glance might seem totally unrelated, first a poll concerning President Obama

His approval rating has dropped to the lowest level in more than a year, with more voters now turning thumbs down on his performance than thumbs up, according to a new McClatchy-Marist poll. The measure of how much people like him also has dropped.

He’s still vastly more popular than Congress, particularly congressional Republicans. But in the biggest political clash of the year – over the federal budget and how to curb deficits – voters split 44 percent to 42 percent between preferring Congress or Obama.

Ok so polling shows Barack Obama is having some trouble in the numbers, big deal, polls go up and down all the time. It’s the nature of things, and anyway why on earth would this have anything to do with this:

Donald Trump thinks actress Ashley Judd would make a “great” Senate candidate, the real estate mogul tweeted on Tuesday.

“All reports indicate Ashley Judd will be running for Sen. McConnell’s seat,” Trump wrote. “She’s going to be a great candidate. …Re: Ashley Judd: Keep @KarlRove away. He already made her a viable candidate.”

Asked to clarify the remarks, Trump told POLITICO in a statement: “Ashley Judd’s candidacy was created by Karl Rove’s terrible ads; even before she thought seriously about running. The ads made her look great and now she probably will run.”

Trump has previously said that an ad from Rove’s super PAC was “the best thing that ever happened to Ashley Judd—simply increases her profile.”

DaTechGuy you’ve totally lost me, why on EARTH are you quoting Donald Trump opinion in Ashley Judd when everyone from Glenn Reynolds to Stacy McCain says she’s a joke, and what on earth does this have to do with the president’s poll numbers?

It’s actually pretty simple, celebrity culture and low information voters.

One of the reasons why Barack Obama beat all the odds and won re-election with a bad record and an even worse economy combination was the inability of Mitt Romney’s message to break through to low information votes. The president’s ad blitz made sure the background noise had nothing to do with the reality.

This time it has had the exact opposite effect, particularly on the sequester. The president pushed the evil of sequester and pointed to it as a direct cause of the White House cancelling kids tours and the media lapped it up.

Those EVIL republicans, on every network and on CNN in every airport people who do not pay attention to the news say school kids not about to tour the white house. The realities that other cuts could be made didn’t matter, the people who only see news in passing while checking on Lady Gaga or their favorite movie star knew the money wasn’t there for parties because of Republicans then they picked up their magazines to find out about Adele and Beyonce and read this:

The same week that President Obama’s administration announced that due to sequestration, White House tours would be cancelled, sources at the White House announced that it would be hosting megastars Adele and Beyonce at Michelle’s 50th birthday party next year. “America’s First Lady will be holding a huge celebrity-packed party for her birthday at the White House next year and, as she adores Adele and Beyonce, she has asked them both to sing,” the source told the UK Daily Mail. The source did say that “The Obamas will pay Adele’s expenses as it’s a private party, not a State one.”

OK they likely didn’t read that because low information voters don’t read Breitbart, they check out entertainment sites like this one:

Today it was revealed that director Quention Tarantino is desperate to have her compose a song for his new film after he fell in love with her Oscar-winning song for Skyfall.

And just a few hours later, it has been reported that the London lass has now been asked to perform at Michelle Obama’s 50th birthday alongside Beyoncé.

and the drop, and BET, and hello, and in entertainment sections elsewhere.

Bottom line the “White house can’t afford tours” story and the “White House has Beyonce & Adele to sing” story hit the exact same places that the low information voters go at the exact same time and the same voters who wouldn’t be caught dead on Fox (or any news site) suddenly had the message that Brietbart was trying to make

It’s been suggested the GOP get involved in the culture pages this is why.

And that’s why Ashley Judd is dangerous.

At first glance Judd is a joke with an entire persona that is totally opposite to what wins in Kentucky, but remember those same low information voters are not going to be reading any of the stories we are writing about her. They will see her celebrity, they will see various stars turn out for her, maybe a singer or two

We can have story after story about Judd and her pronouncements but if they don’t break though to the voter who simply sees a pretty Kentucky girl who managed to make it big, who does work for “charity” its not going to make a difference.

Granted Kentucky went heavily for Mitt in 2012 but it becomes a question of which message gets through to the people. A celebrity like Judd can break through to people in ways a regular pol simply can’t and there is absolutely no way for Mitch McConnell to portray himself as anything else like a Washington insider.

And when Mitch McConnell an established long time pol starts running ads against this pretty Kentucky girl who managed to make good watch how people react.

Does this mean she can romp, particularly if there is not a Tea Party Candidate dividing the GOP? No, but it means that if the GOP takes Judd, a woman who can raise money and get coverage at will, they might be vulnerable to the same mistakes Massachusetts Democrats made in January 2010 in a race they couldn’t lose.

We are in a brave new world, after two generations of the secular culture reaching that low information voter whose preparation for exercising the franchise our forefathers fought for is People’s magazine and the Supermarket tabloids are a factor. Sometimes it gives, sometimes it takes away and we ignore it at our and the country’s peril.

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I’ll be in transit to DC today and I have a couple of posts scheduled before I land. While I’m going to travel far today the quest for that elusive $300 paycheck hasn’t moved an inch since yesterday.

We had a fair amount of traffic the last few days with our coverage of the SF ads and CPAC is going to hopefully drive more, but without those 14 people willing to kick in that $20 this week, all the traffic in the world won’t matter.

So if you can give a hand to keep independent conservative blogging going consider hitting DaTipJar and getting that thermometer moving




The high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and about his doctrine.

Jesus answered him, “I have spoken publicly to the world. I have always taught in a synagogue or in the temple area 10 where all the Jews gather, and in secret I have said nothing. Why ask me? Ask those who heard me what I said to them. They know what I said.”

When he had said this, one of the temple guards standing there struck Jesus and said, “Is this the way you answer the high priest?”

Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?”

(John 18:19-23)

Senator Joe Paine: Do I actually *see* this–?

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington 1939

I crashed a little early yesterday so I didn’t get a chance to comment on the exchange between Jennifer Rubin and the head of CPAC Al Cardenas

Also, this year we decided not to invite Pamela Geller for comments she made at CPAC critical of our officers. In each of these cases, their ad hominem attacks denigrate the debate and distract from the real point of CPAC — to energize and empower conservative political activists and offer a platform to leaders to discuss policy issues that are important to the conservative movement and the nation.

If you are going to exclude people who critique CPAC there wouldn’t be a member of the MSM coming through the door. As for Ad hominem, those cancelled checks for $10,000 each at Pam’s site don’t seem Ad-hominem to me. Nor does the insight magazine article she quotes are pretty clear

Canceled checks obtained by Insight show Alamoudi provided seed money to start a GOP-oriented Muslim group called the Islamic Institute, which Norquist originally chaired and now is led by former Alamoudi aide and former AMC staffer Khaled Saffuri. A White House memo obtained by Insight prepared for coordinating Muslim and Arab-American “public-liaison” events with the White House shows that the Islamic Institute was instrumental in establishing the connection. The memo, from early 2001, provides lists of invitees and the name, date of birth and Social Security number of each. Norquist, as the first chairman of the Islamic Institute, tops the list.

Alamoudi and others, including Norquist, tried to keep critics at bay by branding them as “racists” and “bigots.”

Rubin was unimpressed:

This is troubling on many levels (of which I will touch on only a few) – beginning with the willingness to make accusations and then not explain the factual basis for them (waving your hand at unspecified news reports doesn’t cut it), the indifference to the upset caused within the movement, the attacks on people of conscience as attention-seekers and then the sudden refusal to explain how the action came about with a ground rule ignored in the prior e-mail

But when I got up today and looked at my e-mail then my jaw dropped:

The American Conservative Union (ACU) today announced Donald Trump will address CPAC 2013, the 40th annual Conservative Political Action Conference. America’s largest gathering of conservative leaders and activists to be held Thursday, March 14 – Saturday, March 16, 2013.

“Donald Trump is an American patriot and success story with a massive following among small government conservatives,” said ACU Chairman Al Cardenas. “I look forward to welcoming him back to the CPAC stage next week. Mr. Trump’s previous CPAC appearance was hugely popular among our attendees and we expect it will be even more popular this year.”

Donald Trump? Donald TRUMP? Cripes was Alex Jones booked that week? Did Trump have a better year than Christie? Did The Donald™ take bigger risks to speak truth to power than Pam? Pam routinely packs every event she had at CPAC, it the argument is popularity Pam brings it in spades.

There is one thing that Trump can do that Pam can’t. Trump can write those $10,000 checks, Pam, not so much.

Can’t anybody play this game?

Update: Just a reminder Pam received the Queen Esther Award for Jewish Heroism this year.

What heroic thing has Donald Trump done?

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Well this is another post unlikely to generate a $10,000 check to support this blog but the meter did move a little bit yesterday meaning it will only take 6 readers kicking in $20 to make this week’s paycheck.

(as for covering my cpac expenses I’ll have to worry about that later).

I’m no Nate Thayer and you likely won’t find me in Iraq anytime soon but like him I’m trying to eek out a living writing and on the radio. If you think I’m delivering value for money consider hitting DaTipJar below.





Media types looking to marginalize conservatives and ignore Bachmann, Cain and Palin hardest hit: Read MSNBC:

“After considerable deliberation and reflection, I have decided not to pursue the office of the presidency,” Trump said in a statement.

With his typical bravado, Trump maintained that he would have won the Republican primary and the general election, but recognized that “running for public office cannot be done half-heartedly.”

If nothing else the morning shows will get one more day talking about a non candidate, perhaps they will shift to Jimmy McMillian instead.

So the most powerful person in the world in front of a group of some of the most famous names in the press spends all his time joking about Donald Trump.

Does anyone seriously believe that Trump considers this a bad thing? Ann Althouse doesn’t

Hey, it’s a victory for Trump that the President talked about him at all, and he talked about him a lot. And all these stories about how grim and grumpy Trump looked? Trump always has a grumpy expression on his face. I detected more of a shadow of a smile than usual.

The Big Man says this:

You don’t punish Donald Trump by giving him attention. A more experienced politician would know that. Nor is building Trump up good for Obama — Trump has actually hurt him more than all the others combined. Because, you know, Trump has actually been willing to criticize him without being afraid of the Big Media retribution. The various traditional GOP candidates still have the old cringe-reflex where Big Media criticism is concerned.

He is right about Trump hurting him but wrong about the build up, as long as Trump is the news other GOP candidates can’t break through.

I don’t think Trump is planning on running I think he’s much too smart to believe his own hype. I do however think his weakness is his ego and the White House intends to use this against him. Even if he damages the president it won’t matter if a 3rd party run allows him to win with a minority of the vote.

A Trump 3rd party run would draw chiefly from people who are not paying attention but are hurting, these are exactly the people Obama needs to keep away from the Republican column.

It could backfire but since I see it as Obama’s best shot.

It’s about time:

The White House released President Obama’s original birth certificate Wednesday.

They did? But I thought everybody was saying that He already released it? How can it be that there was a long form that wasn’t released? Here is the image:

I'd say it's a case closed moment

The PDF file is here.

Now as for the document itself. There isn’t anything I see odd with it, nothing embarrassing, nothing strange. Nothing in terms of the speculation that we’ve been hearing.

To the president I say: Was it really that hard to do this?

To Donald Trump who is as I type right now is taking a victory lap. I say, HUH? He is taking credit for getting the document released (true) but he is not touching the fact that he saying stuff like “I hear its been lost etc etc etc.” He is talking issues this morning but the fact that he is doing a huge 180 on what his speculation was just a few days ago. Is he actually going to get a pass on that?

Expect updates as fast as I can type them.

Update: Trump is still holding court, I can’t believe he is going to spin his way though this. But It looks like he is going to.

To the questions of where he was born: I’d say case closed. As I’ve said in the past I believe he was born here (the newspaper clippings and the fact that the Clinton’s counter it was decisive to me.)

To political advantage: Short Term Advantage Obama long term advantage GOP This stopps speculation and the bleeding that was coming over this issue, it also gives the lie to the idea that this wasn’t hurting Obama politically. This was released today because Trump was causing damage and Jermoe Corsi’s book was #1 on Amazon.

In the long term it takes it off the table before he could bait enough GOP candidates to give an opinion that he could disprove at a key point in the campaign. The longer this was in play the more likely he could hit this at a time at maximum advantage. That’s a card they would have liked to play later. With $5 gas etc anything that keep the public’s eyes on the state of the country helps the White House, That ability for the WH to attack and distract on this issue is now gone. What will Chris Matthews do when he has to ask about gas prices, budget cuts and wars?

Eligibility: Now there is one interesting point to be made that Andrea Shea King raised on the show a few weeks ago (I’ll see if I can get her for the panel today). On that show Andrea pointed out that the birth certificate was a Red Herring. The actual issue she and others were making is the definition of “Natural Born Citizen”. She made the argument that under the constitution and in history That eligibility issue was defined by a person born of two American parents. The certificate shows that his father was born outside the US, so people making that case can actually advance.

However the Supreme Court has never ruled on this issue one way or the other. Remember what John Meacham said just a couple of weeks ago:

Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

This is not a trivial difference. Here is the Boston Globe from November 1896:

The fact that the Constitution says “natural” instead of “native” shows to my mind that that distinction was probably discussed. A natural born citizen would be one who by nature, that is by inheritance, so to speak was a citizen , as distinguished from one who was by nativity or locality of birth a citizen.

This is from a regular column called The People’s Lawyer that ran at the time.

As I type this NOW MSNBC is talking about the distinction between the two terms, odd they never brought this up before and admitting it has never been litigated.

With the release of the certificate this actually gives the ability of those making the case that he’s not eligible under the natural born clause ammo to make their case. Since however its a question of interpretation I suspect the lower courts and the Supreme Court would rule that “Natural born” should be interpreted as “native born” since President Obama in effect makes the precedent. Transforming this from an interesting legal debate vs a historical footnote.

This is certainly not going to be a boring news day.

Another update: Some commentary around the net:

Stacy McCain

I’m waiting for Andrew Sullivan to say, “See there? Now where’s Trig’s birth certificate? What’s Sarah Palin hiding?” In fact, Sully may have already said that, but I haven’t bothered to look yet.

Captain Ed:

Whatever credibility Trump had just dissipated this morning. He won in the same sense that Charlie Sheen is #winning! by getting canned and then embarrassing himself on a national tour.

Bill Jacobson:

this would confirm that Team Obama recognizes that the birth certificate issue has gone from tactical tool to strategic nightmare.

and:

The ease with which the White House obtained the documents demonstrates the rank idiocy of the mainstream media, which has been feeding us a steady stream of excuses as to why Obama could not obtain the document.

Lonely Conservative:

The White House has requested that Hawaii release the long form birth certificate, it can be seen here. I just have to wonder why they didn’t do this two years ago?

I don’t, it wasn’t to his advantage then.

Weigel:

Until today, you could speculate that the White House wasn’t answering them because they couldn’t. After today, you’ve got to be wondering if (Tim) Adams just flat-out lied.

I’m pleased to say I never heard of Tim Adams till I read Weigel’s piece

Firedoglake has a interesting way of putting it:

The President of the United States has been harassed into releasing his “long-form” birth certificate

Yeah I was harassed into releasing mine when my insurance changed

Oliver Willis:

It’s dumb that Obama had to go to extraordinary lengths to release his long-form birth certificate, but hilarious because it now shows that the leading presidential candidate of the Republican party has gotten to his position on what is an even now more thoroughly debunked conspiracy theory.

That first sentence is very true, but not for the reason Oliver thinks.

Patterico:

So the “long form” — which supposedly cannot possibly be obtained by the President, because Hawaii supposedly never ever ever ever releases it (at least according to those who have confidently told me this) — has been released. [UPDATE: But see my UPDATE x2. I don’t think it actually has been. At least, I’m not sure.]

And it is certified, which Hawaii supposedly cannot possibly ever ever ever do (according to the same people).

Looks like those of us who said the President had the ability to do this were right.

Now the question becomes: why didn’t the President do this long ago? In our most recent thread, we debated this. After all, he was being sued and spending campaign money to defend those lawsuits. Why not get the original evidence? Hawaii law allowed it. Was he hiding something? Or just arrogant?

I see nothing startling on the certificate, so I am going with the “arrogance” explanation.

Karol Markovicz is with me on advantage:

the release of the certificate will be a good, temporary bump for Obama. He gets to seem above the silliness. But in the longer term Obama is at a disadvantage. Now perhaps people will focus on his misguided policies and wrongheaded politics instead of the place of his birth. Yes, Obama took a major distraction off the table. Unfortunately for the president, the distraction had been a big help to him.

As for Trump, he might have lost his calling card issue but he’s still a sideshow and the media will still cover him. Does he have a chance at being our next president? Of course not. But his ability to get our president to cower and give in makes him a winner today.

Update 3: Bazinga!

Remember when I asked Trump in my interview last week if he would release his tax returns? This is what he said:

“Maybe I’m going to do the tax returns when Obama does his birth certificate. I may tie my tax returns,” Trump told me. “I’d love to give my tax returns. I may tie my tax returns into Obama’s birth certificate.”

So what do you think? Will Trump do it?

Update 4: Insty:

TRUMP 1, OBAMA 0: So I was at the gym when they finally caved and released the birth certificate – and on both the Fox and the CNN monitors I saw Donald Trump, who quickly started talking about . . . gasoline prices. See, he knows how to keep the pressure on.

Ann Althouse echos me:

I’d say, the reason Obama did not release the long-form birth certificate before is that he thought it was to his advantage to allow other people to look bad or crazy in one way or another by going on in the birtherist mode. But there was a tipping point, as Trump got traction and polls showed huge numbers of American’s entertaining doubts. So, it was all political strategy.

As I’ve written in the past the primary reason why the administration did not end the so-called “birther” controversy once and for all by the release of the President original birth certificate is because it was to their advantage to deflect and or discredit people who pursue it as not serious.

There was however an interesting side effect, it meant that this meme was underground to some degree, unchallenged and growing. So when Donald Trump, a person with sufficient celebrity that the media can’t ignore or break brought it up, it was able to feed on years of those unanswered questions that he spoke aloud and in plain language.

Trumps friends in the media at first expressed surprise, then regret then disdain, but as this clip from PBS indicates (via hot air), they now have fear.

Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

It is amazing, it’s the “There are no death panels but lets repeal them anyway” bit all over again. Not only does Meacham call for the repeal of the “Natural Born” clause, but he basically makes the same argument that Andrea Shea King did on the show a few weeks ago in terms of its meaning.

That he is making this argument to a PBS audience shows that this has gone beyond those who watch The View. Trump’s shots have become body blows that are lowing the president’s defenses and Public Television that has always been there to help defend the democrats who fund them are going to try to soften the blows.

Trump is not my choice for the nomination, he’s not even in my top 5, but he has done serious damage politically to President Obama and as long as he is in play he will continue to do so. As Rush Limbaugh has said, the media will tell you who they fear, right now they fear Trump.