Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Cleveland Trump Stop

Related: Trump's Road to the Republican Nomination 

Can only drive for so long without stopping.

"During the Cleveland convention, delegates and other attendees should expect to pass through metal detectors and double fencing. Traffic near the arena will be limited, and cars will be checked by bomb-searching dogs. Unlike in other conventions that had designated “free speech zones” for protesters, city officials said Cleveland would allow protests to occur anywhere outside the secured area. Just before the 2000 Democratic convention in Los Angeles, a federal judge ordered that organizers move the “free speech zone” closer to the Staples Center. Demonstrators grew unruly, prompting police to fire rubber bullets and forcibly disperse the crowd. But the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago eclipses all others in terms of violence as thousands of Vietnam War protesters descended upon the city, riots broke out, and the National Guard and Army troops were mobilized. Chicago police reported 589 arrests and 219 injuries, nearly evenly split between protesters and police."

Better get in line and await the shakedown.

"The last gasp of #NeverTrump" by Joshua Green   July 05, 2016

For nearly as long as Donald Trump has led the Republican presidential field, a small but determined band of conservatives has been trying to stop him from winning the nomination.

So far, a handful of Rules Committee members have spoken out in favor of a “conscience clause” that, through a simple tweak of the convention rules, would unbind delegates currently committed to Trump and free them to back someone else. So has Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, a potential Trump replacement. But this effort is almost certain to fail for the same reason every earlier effort to stop Trump failed: While he may be unacceptable to the Republican elite, the party rank-and-file still like him. And, at least for now, Trump doesn’t appear to be threatening the livelihood of too many Republican politicians.

Three recent data points tell the story:

• Trump is toxic with Republican donors....

• Yet he remains popular with the GOP base. The latest Bloomberg Politics poll found that likely Republican voters still have a positive view of Trump: 72 percent rate him favorably, 27 percent unfavorably. He’s much more popular than the Republicans who are considered likeliest to replace him if he were ousted, such as House Speaker Paul Ryan (39-47) and Romney (32-60). Ousting Trump would therefore infuriate a large portion of the Republican electorate, even though he’s currently on track to lose.

• Trump isn’t dragging down many other Republicans. Much of the establishment antipathy toward Trump is driven by the fear that he’ll prove so unpopular that he’ll cost the GOP control of the House and Senate. But a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll doesn’t detect a coming landslide. Republicans and Democrats split evenly at 46 percent in a generic ballot test that measures voter sentiment toward Congress. By contrast, Democrats led 52-33 percent at this point in the 2008 cycle, which was their last wave election.

All this adds up to a kind of worst-case scenario for conservatives desperate to oust Trump at the convention. He is, as they feared, performing badly enough against Clinton that he’ll probably lose the election and let Democrats hang onto the White House.

It's no such much the party as the person.

Same here.

But after firing his inept campaign manager and succumbing to entreaties that he stop winging it and use a teleprompter, Trump is not doing so badly that Republican officials are desperate enough to override millions of their own voters and install someone else. They’re paralyzed, as they have been all along. They’ll hope for the best — and may still wind up with the worst....


Related: The Secret Life of Willard Mitty

If I wasn't I'd say there was a conspiracy afoot.

"Donald Trump is full of conspiracies—and many believe him" by Michael Levenson Globe Staff  June 30, 2016

Sometimes, Donald Trump sounds as though he is just passing on information, as he did after Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died. “They say they found a pillow on his face,” Trump told a radio interviewer, “which is a pretty unusual place to find a pillow.”

That is true, and the idea that the mainstream media could toy with the theme or idea of the murder of a Supreme Court Justice is preposterous. This ain't no Pelican Brief!

Other times, he seems to be wondering aloud, as he did when he suggested the Clintons might have been involved in what he termed the “very fishy” 1993 suicide of former White House aide Vince Foster.

Ah, yes, the death of Vince Foster.

More famously, he helped drive the so-called birther movement, insisting that President Obama was not born in the United States and that investigators he had sent to Hawaii would expose “one of the greatest cons in the history of politics and beyond.”

The love child?

Trump’s affinity for conspiracy theories might seem the stuff of a few kooks and cranks living in their parents’ basement.

The insults are really laughable at this point, in every way. They are the kooks and cranks, talking only to themselves. That's what happens when it's nothing but agenda-pushing lies after so long.

But far from being a marginal phenomenon, conspiracy theories have always been part of the American political landscape and are believed by more than 55 percent of the public — a group that cuts across race, gender, income, and political affiliation, according to researchers and polls.

Depends on what theory. Can't lump them all together, and some are out their to poison the well. You must decide from which to drink.

The surprising breadth of conspiracy beliefs shows that while Trump’s rhetoric may repel a large segment of voters, it is also tapping a deep vein of thought among Americans who distrust elites and suspect that larger, darker forces are orchestrating domestic and world events.

“When I started studying conspiracy theories, I was stunned,” said Thomas J. Wood, a political scientist at Ohio State University. “I thought I was going to find them on the fringes of American attitudes, but they are a core way that Americans read about and explain political phenomena in response to uncertainty.”

Oh, look at this, the ma$$ media embracing "us."

What’s unusual, he said, is to have the presumptive nominee of one of the two major political parties using his stature to push such theories out of the realm of supermarket tabloids and e-mail chain letters and into the political mainstream. 

Interesting that they would pair the Clinton e-mail scandal with their own kind of coverage.

In prime-time debates, TV interviews, and on his Twitter account with 9.4 million followers, Trump has broadcast conspiracy theories that falsely suggest vaccines cause autism, global warming is a Chinese hoax, Obama sympathizes with ISIS, and Ted Cruz’s father might have been involved in the Kennedy assassination.

I already took a shot at that first one,; it's not the Chinese behind the lies, it's government-funded $cienti$ts, whatever is going out there; Obama does more than sympathize with it, his government and its allies is protecting them while funding and arming them; and Cruz's father apparently did have something to do with it on the fringes. 

Not like the ma$$ media is going to investigate or run any of that down. That's not their job. Their job is to obfuscate and confuse while denigrating.

“In my estimation, what he’s doing is very scary,” said Joseph E. Uscinski, a political scientist at the University of Miami who noted that conspiracy theories are often espoused by despots. “He’s the head of the party and the nominee for president and he has a lot of power because of that, and conspiracy theories in the hands of powerful people generally lead to deleterious consequences.”

And the biggest conspiracy theories come from the government  and media themselves. 

Sorry, but I'll never forget Tonkin, incubators on the Kuwaiti floor, and Iraqi WMD. 


Historians point out that conspiracy theories fueled the Anti-Masonic Movement in the 19th century, which alleged that Freemasons were secretly plotting to control the country; the Red Scare after World War II, which saw the creeping threat of Communism in every corner of society; and, more recently, dire warnings that the president’s health care law would lead to “death panels” that would cut off care to the elderly and disabled.

There are death panels; they are just calling them End of Life consultations. Health care is being rationed as it's costs continue to rise.  Don't take my word for it. Go do your own research. I've put a few links up here the past month, but that's all. 

As for the Red Scare, the ma$$ media sure jumped on that bandwagon and rode it for all its worth. Hopped off about 25 years ago, but has hopped back on the last couple of years (Ukraine).

Populist leaders throughout history have also been drawn to theories about secret plots and powerful cabals because they promote “the sense that all elites are bad, that outsiders are bad, and the common people good,” said J. Eric Oliver, a University of Chicago political scientist. “Trump exemplifies this in spades.”

They $ure haven't acquitted them$elves very well these last 20 or so years.

Trump’s most prominent embrace of a conspiracy theory was in 2011, when he was considering a White House run and raised his political profile by stoking the long-simmering rumor that Obama was not born in the country.

“I just say, very simply, ‘Why doesn’t he show his birth certificate?’ ” Trump asked on CNN in April 2011. “Why has he spent over $2 million in legal fees to keep this quiet and to keep this silent?”

That's a red herring.

Two weeks later, Obama released his long-form birth certificate, hoping to quash the claim. But a year later, Trump was unpersuaded, declaring on CNBC that “nothing has changed my mind” and that he still had “major questions” about whether Obama was eligible to serve as president.

Unlike conventional politicians who might worry about the blowback, Trump has also been a guest on the radio show of Alex Jones, a prominent conspiracy theorist who has suggested that the government was behind the Boston Marathon bombings and the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

We will get to him below.

And Trump’s longtime friend and ally, Roger Stone, is a veteran Republican operative who has argued that Lyndon B. Johnson was behind the Kennedy assassination and that John F. Kennedy Jr. — who died in a plane crash — was murdered by the Clintons.

There is evidence of cover-up.

Jeff Hunt, director of the Centennial Institute, a think tank at Colorado Christian University, which will host Trump, Sarah Palin, and other conservatives at a summit this week, said he is “not a fan” of Trump’s conspiracy theories, but doesn’t pay much attention to them.

That's basically what I think of Alex. It's an open secret that he is part of the Zionist controlled opposition. 

“I often hear them pop up, and you go, ‘Is he responding to something? Or is he floating it?’ ” said Hunt, who plans to vote for Trump in November. “I don’t see it as deliberately misleading but, if it is, it’s clearly something that should be condemned.”

When Trump entertains such theories, he often argues that he is merely relaying them, not endorsing them, as he did when he suggested in February that Cruz and Marco Rubio were not eligible to be president.

It's the whole born on U.S. soil thing like with McCain. It's the letter of the law, but thankfully this government no longer abides by the Constitution. Cruz was born in Canada.

“Somebody said he’s not. And I retweeted it,” Trump said when questioned about the claim during an ABC interview. “I retweet things and we start dialogue and it’s very interesting.”

That approach makes it easier for Trump to evade responsibility for promoting falsehoods and misinformation, said Mark Fenster, a University of Florida law professor and author of “Conspiracy Theories: Secrecy and Power in American Culture.”

I always consider the source of my material, in this case the war-promoting pre$$.

“He’s never saying, ‘I believe this,’ ” Fenster said. “He always puts it in terms of, ‘I don’t know; some people think so.’ And the great advantage of that is, there’s no follow-up. It’s a very strategic position that he takes.”

Again, same thing unless an agenda is being promoted. I call them one-day wonders, or used to.

To ascertain just how prevalent such theories are, Wood and Oliver polled 1,935 Americans about six different common conspiracy theories in 2011, and found that 55 percent agreed with at least one.

The most widely held conspiracy theory, believed by 25 percent of respondents, asserted that the financial crisis was secretly orchestrated by a small group of Wall Street bankers to extend the power of the Federal Reserve and further their control of the world’s economy.

Somehow those guys always seem to come out better after one of those things, more consolidation and wealth inequality.

Almost as popular was the conspiracy theory, believed by 24 percent of Americans, that Obama was not born in the United States and does not have an authentic Hawaiian birth certificate.

And 19 percent of those polled said they believe the government planned the Sept. 11 attacks; that billionaire George Soros is behind a hidden plot to control the government, the media, and the world; and the invasion of Iraq was driven by oil companies and Jews in the United States and Israel.

Soros is helping them out, the forces behind Iraq were those very interests, and 9/11, well.... take a scroll.

People are more likely to believe such theories when they feel threatened by war, terrorism, and economic upheaval, said Joseph M. Parent, a political scientist at the University of Miami and coauthor, with Uscinski, of “American Conspiracy Theories.”

The implication there being none of them are true. 

What are those odds, huh?

“What they have in common is that they are emotional ice bags to recover from loss,” Parent said. “It can’t be your fault that something is going bad, somebody had to be conspiring, somebody had to do something dark and dangerous to take something away from you… and if you can just get back at them, your problems are solved.” 

First of all, those things were not my fault, had nothing to do with them. Why is the expert putting some sort of blame on me and my mental reasoning?

Secondly, I'm not then one denying the immutable laws of physics like the newspapers and government, no matter what you believe.

While conspiracy theories might tarnish Trump’s appeal in a general election, some of his supporters see them as less important than the candidate’s willingness to take a hard line against illegal immigrants and Muslims entering the country.

Trump’s outrageous claims about Foster’s death and Obama’s birth certificate “are just a lot of static,” said Mike Stopa, a physicist and Trump delegate from Massachusetts. “As long as the basic message and the policies he’s focusing on stay true, that’s what his supporters are there for.”


RelatedTrump accuses ‘desperate’ rivals of collusion

Globe really gunning for him with a shot in the dark, huh?

And the wait goes on....

You know to what I'm no longer receptive?

The puppet show that is called a newspaper.

"A reminder that many of the Republican Party’s biggest stars aren’t willing to appear on his behalf. The GOP’s two living presidents, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, its most recent presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, and Ohio’s Republican governor, John Kasich, all plan to avoid the four-day event."

THAT RIGHT THERE is reason enough to throw a party! 

In a separate development Monday, Trump blamed the news media for the controversy surrounding an anti-Clinton tweet that appeared to depict the Star of David atop a pile of cash, former House speaker Newt Gingrich, said, ‘‘Trump understands that if he can appeal to consumer America, he drowns political America,’’ and chief primary rival Texas senator Ted Cruz has been trying to win a speaking slot. 

"Plans for Trump convention still lack promised pizzazz" by Tracy Jan Globe Staff  July 07, 2016

CLEVELAND -- Donald Trump has promised America a riveting extravaganza in Cleveland -- an unconventional nominating convention that will defy typically over-scripted tradition.

But as details of his plans have belatedly emerged, what appears to be taking shape is an event locked into the usual limits of conventional-hall staging, prime-time speaking slots, and Republican Party floor business. If anything, the Republican Party and its hosts in Cleveland are striving mightily to project a sense of normalcy, to assure the faithful that a successful convention is in the works.

Plans for Trump biography rollout? Check. High-profile roles for Trump family? Check. Political friends and celebrities ready to praise Trump? Check.

To be sure, there is an undercurrent of unease in Cleveland over the potential for embarrassment, dissent, and chaos.

But the only out-of-the-ordinary elements visible so far are the divisive candidate himself -- who continued to show a disregard for political norms this week by defending a tweet widely regarded as anti-Semitic -- and things outside of his control, like scheming by some Republicans to upend his nomination.

Less than two weeks before its opening, organizers were unable to explain what would be new and exciting. The cast of likely speakers includes a predictable lineup of GOP politicos: New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst, and Texas Senator Ted Cruz (who said after meeting with Trump Thursday that he would speak but had not agreed to endorse).

Related: "Donald Trump held a tense meeting with Republican senators and sought to make peace with Senator Ted Cruz." 

Ungrateful bastard.

Key GOP leaders, including former President George W. Bush, former Florida Jeb Bush, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, as well as some senators locked in close re-election races like New Hampshire’s Kelly Ayotte, have said they would stay far away from Cleveland.


“It’s a work in progress. They’re working on it,” said Bill Harris, senior consultant to the RNC who has been involved in the planning and management of every convention since 1984. During a brief interview this week from one of the skyboxes overlooking the convention floor, Harris would not divulge any programming details, nor predict how a Trump convention could differ from years past.

“Mr. Trump has proven very successful at being an unconventional candidate,” Harris said. “He certainly knows how to command attention and use the media to get his point across.”

Some House members who met behind closed doors with Trump Thursday on Capitol Hill said Trump appeared more presidential in private and hoped he could project that from the big stage in Cleveland.

“That’s why the convention is going to be very important. He’s going to own that. That’s his convention,” said Representative Peter King, a New York Republican who at times has been skeptical of Trump. “It’s going to be him, his family, his friends – it’s going to be Donald Trump. That’s where he has the opportunity to show who he is.”

In Cleveland, a tour of Quicken Loans Arena revealed this week that the stage for the July 18 to 21 convention is nearly built -- white, curved, with wide sets of stairs flanking the center -- not too straight, with just enough flair, reportedly per The Donald’s specifications. Two giant screens -- made up of 636 LED panels -- have been erected.

The reality TV star has promised to jazz up the normally staid quadrennial rite by injecting some “showbiz” into the convention. For months now, Trump has bragged that his nominating party would be “monumentally magnificent,” “brilliantly staged,” not “boring.”

That's politics!

“You have a lot of people hoping it’s not going to be the same-old, same-old convention because voters didn’t pick the same old candidate,” said Anne Hathaway, former chief of staff at the Republican National Committee and program director of the 2012 Tampa convention who is a delegate this year.

With Trump’s connections in the entertainment, business and beauty pageant industries, his campaign has the “opportunity to package the convention differently than we have ever done before” to reflect his unique candidacy, Hathaway said. “Maybe it’s not that they are not organized. Maybe they want to maximize the element of surprise in order to get viewers to tune in.”

Alas, to the disappointment of perhaps millions of viewers, Trump himself will be featured only on the final night of the convention, per tradition -- not all four nights as he previously suggested. “I don’t want people to think I’m grandstanding -- which I’m not,” Trump told the New York Times recently.

Speculation about celebrity speakers has included Indiana basketball coach Bobby Knight (whose endorsement helped propel Trump to victory in the Indiana primary) and boxing promoter Don King (an ardent Trump fan who lives in Cleveland).

Three weeks out from the 2012 convention, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus had already announced a slate of a dozen headline speakers, which included Ohio Governor John Kasich, New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez, the country’s first female Hispanic governor who Trump recently ridiculed, and former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, the first African-American woman to hold the position. 

I was told Kasich wasn't going to attend, and will someone please arrest Rice when she enters?

“I would have shown a little leg by now,” said Russ Schriefer, a top Romney strategist who ran his Tampa convention operation but is not involved in the Cleveland convention. Even without knowing Trump’s speaking lineup, Schriefer said he is certain the American public will tune in.

“People who like Trump want to watch him, and people who don’t like him want to watch him,” Schriefer said. “I don’t know if his convention will draw votes but he will certainly draw eyeballs.”

Not mine.

The ending, too, will be predictable. On the fourth and final night, after Trump speaks, 125,000 red, white and blue balloons will drift down from the rafters. Just as they did four years ago.

Then I don't really need to see it, do I?


Might even be BORING! 

"Three ways the GOP convention could go down in history" by James Pindell Globe Staff  July 14, 2016

Conventions are typically scripted events, but a lack of planning means the program could go awry — and it will be easy for viewers to notice.

The plus side? The ratings would be, as Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump might say, huge.

The real fireworks could be aimed at Trump — instead of shooting into the sky outside the Quicken Loans Arena. Efforts by anti-Trump delegates did not gain much traction in the lead-up to the convention, but those same voices will still be there on the floor next week. What is typically mundane procedure for delegates at most conventions could provide some real drama in Cleveland.

And that’s just inside the hall. Outside the arena, anti-Trump activists have planned protests around the convention and the lakeside city.

But some initial estimates — including one as high as 500,000 people for a demonstration — have been scaled back. They’re currently expecting fewer people to demonstrate. In a summer that has been partly defined by racial tensions, organizers of the Black Lives Matter movement told The Washington Post they aren’t even going to bother with Cleveland.

Compare this to the Democratic National Convention the following week: Not only are there expected to be high-profile speeches from both Hillary and Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, and US Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, but celebrities like singer-songwriter Lady Gaga and actor Bryan Cranston will be appearing at various events....



Or it could be torture.

"Combustible atmosphere emerges ahead of RNC" by Tracy Jan Globe Staff  July 15, 2016

WASHINGTON — Protesters are preparing for Donald Trump’s nominating party under heightened tensions in an already volatile political climate.

Add to that the recent shooting deaths of black men by police and subsequent Dallas sniper attack that killed five police officers during a protest, and it’s a combustible scenario.

Really shooting things up, aren't they?

Hundreds of protesters will undergo training to help ensure their safety. Some will don neon green caps and be tasked with documenting — with video — the use of force by police or attacks by other groups.

Activists are being trained to make sure their hands are always exposed, so it’s evident they are not holding weapons, and to clearly articulate if approached by police that they are “complying, not resisting.”

“We want to make it very clear that we are being cooperative,” said the Rev. Waltrina Middleton, founder of Movement for Black Lives and Cleveland Action. In addition to safety, she has also led trainings to educate organizers on their rights. She said many local activists are already on edge following home visits by the FBI and other law enforcement inquiring about their plans during the convention. (The FBI has characterized the visits as “community outreach” aimed at keeping the convention safe.) 

It feels like the Bush times again, and these groups are all working together.

City officials are going to great lengths to defuse the tension and ward off violence by scheduling marches and rallies by groups holding opposing views at different times or in separate locations.

White supremacist groups have vowed to come to Cleveland to protect Trump supporters. Leaders of the controversial New Black Panther Party, which is accused of being a racist hate group, have said they would come armed to defend themselves.

The New Black Panther Party???

Neither has secured official permits to demonstrate, but city officials said any group could congregate and express its opinions in public areas outside of the official event zone.

“We’re going to have that. This is America,” said Michael McGrath, Cleveland’s director of public safety and former police chief.

Police, outfitted with new riot-control gear and body cameras, insist they are prepared to keep the peace with ramped-up security plans.

They are “training for the worst-case scenario.”  I pray for the best.

Adding to the volatility is the Ohio state law allowing people to carry guns in the open without a permit, and Eternal Sentry, a white nationalist website with racist and anti-Semitic material, is a cosponsor of the rally. 

The fact is, they have just as much right as anyone else; it's the media portrayal that skews toward hate of them. The $upremaci$t pre$$ says it is okay to hate the white man.


"No guns are allowed within the security perimeter that surrounds the convention venue, Quicken Loans Arena, which is controlled by the US Secret Service. Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams and Democratic Mayor Frank Jackson said city police have dealt with other events at which people have openly carried firearms."

Also seeTrump wants to study proposal to allow guns at convention

Who would want to put him on the spot in regard to gun control, and possibly be putting him in the crosshairs themselves??

Other Black Lives Matter activists around the country who had planned on demonstrating in Cleveland now plan to sit the convention out.

Oddly, any other identity politics is okay.

“Especially after the Dallas shootings, there’s a perception about Black Lives Matter, about us being terrorists. It’s produced an environment of fear and paranoia,” said Kamau West, a Howard University senior from Denver.

Blame the media and government!  They shape the debate and opinion, 

Instead, West will travel to Baton Rouge to protest the police killing of Alton Sterling....


Yeah, who knows what could happen in Cleveland, city of kings(?).

"The Goldwater era changed the GOP, so could the Trump nomination" by David M. Shribman Globe Correspondent  July 16, 2016

Donald J. Trump and the insurgents who open their nominating convention tomorrow night in Cleveland may be the vanguard of a Republican insurrection that could remake a 160-year-old political party with roots in a frontier and abolitionist past.

There goes the pre$$ again.

I didn't know Trump delegates and supporters were laying landmines in the streets of Cleveland, did you?

And if they are, they are part of a tradition that at hectic hours of history has seen American parties, which don’t change easily or often, adapt to new political conditions and adopt new ideas, transforming themselves even as they may also be agents of social and cultural transformation.

It's usually because the people had to drag them along.

Already this year, the Trump insurrection — a hostile takeover rather than an internal mutiny — has set in motion unpredictable tidal waves of change in the nation and the party, waves that utterly and easily swamped the early favorite and the field.

That's an interesting view of the democracy they are exporting at the barrel of a gun. Such flowery descriptions of what is installed and imposed on others as their lives get progressively worse from what they once knew.

But it has also summoned echoes of an earlier GOP rebellion, one that began with Barry Goldwater in 1964 and in less than two decades overhauled the Republican Party, challenged many of the assumptions of American life, altered the way politics is practiced, and, by the time that tide was at full flood, in 1980, began an era of Republican domination of the White House that lasted for 20 of the next 28 years.

Back in 1964, 1,308 Republican delegates crowded into San Francisco’s primitive Cow Palace for the party’s convention. For months, Republicans had fought not only to determine the identity of their White House nominee but also to reshape the identity of a party that, to the Goldwater forces, seemed a mere mirror of their Democratic rivals — “dime-store New Dealers,’’ in the withering phrase of the Arizona senator.

I saw his speech on C-Span this week. 

I like watching those old pols. They, at least, had some honor.

Fortified with a sense of daring and destiny, those 1964 Republicans nominated the personification of that era’s new conservatism, a son of the desert West, supported by theorists and publicists in the urban East, determined to reshape a party with a liberal wing into an unalloyedly conservative movement. In doing so, they rendered Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller of New York, the establishment Republican who was primed for the presidency but never really got close, a figure of a discredited past — the precursor, historians may conclude, to the mortifying end of the 2016 candidacy of former governor Jeb Bush of Florida.


That's one thing you have to thank Trump for, whatever you think of him. He took on the Bushes and stopped Jeb. Half the work is done; other half to come.

Even after Goldwater lost 44 states in a landslide repudiation, the future profile of the Republican Party was not yet clear — a cautionary tale for commentators and worried Republicans who predict a GOP debacle this year and perhaps extending to the future.

I don't they can rig that this year; I think they can play with the battlegrounds and deny Trump the electoral. He'll probably win popular based on past experience, but the callers of elections and vote counters (black hole of a machine and computer software) can sway that several percentages and you'll believe it.

“Goldwater got clobbered in 1964 but set in motion the modern Republican conservative movement,’’ said Douglas Brinkley, a Rice University historian. “He made it palatable to be a conservative. It wasn’t clear then that that would be the result, nor was it clear that out of the ashes of that disaster would come Ronald Reagan. We also don’t know the result of the Trump nomination. It may be a disaster for the Republicans — or the beginning of a new Republican populist movement.’’

Then Ron Paul should get some credit.

And so now the Republicans prepare to nominate another outsider determined to remold the party.

Wasn't Goldwater a senator?

Though this time the intruder is not so much conservative as confrontational, not so much an ideologue as an insurrectionist, not so much inspired by ideas as by his mood of the moment — impulses, sometimes outrageous but always attention grabbing, meted out tweet by tweet and jibe by jibe.

I'm outraged.

Trump is every bit as disruptive a force as Goldwater, with a constituency — resentful of immigrants, distrustful of establishment figures, disdainful of the totems and taboos of politics — even more rebellious and incongruous than the 1964 rebels, whose ranks included both intellectuals and the Young Americans for Freedom.

Wasn't Hillary a Goldwater girl?

Indeed, he may be the greater disruptor: Goldwater was careful not to inflame in talking about matters of race, for example, and his famous trope, “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice,” wouldn’t sound especially radical in the mouth of a GOP contender today.

The result for 2016: a crisis of the old order, or simply, to some, a crisis of order itself.

What kind of order?

This is not, of course, the first time rebels have assailed a major political party, and in fact in his “House Divided’’ speech in June 1859, delivered in Springfield, Ill., Abraham Lincoln spoke of the young Republican Party as having been made up of “strange, discordant, and even, hostile elements.’’

The Republicans of that early era survived, and today’s almost certainly will, too. The GOP, after all, controls 34 of the 50 governors’ chairs in the nation and the Congress. Still, some see the potential for a seismic shift.

Major political parties vanish from the American landscape very rarely, and then only as a result of a challenge prompted by an explosion of new issues. The last major party to disappear was the Whig Party, the victim of anti-immigrant sentiment, particularly in the South, and of pressure on the slavery issue.

“The Whigs were pretty powerful in their day,’’ said Eric Foner, the Columbia University historian regarded as perhaps the nation’s preeminent scholar of mid-19th-century America. “They elected presidents, they competed pretty effectively across the country. But they were overcome in the early 1850s as the issues changed.”

The populists under William Jennings Bryan took over the Democratic Party in 1896, beginning a transformation that, under Woodrow Wilson and then Franklin Roosevelt, would embrace government as a powerful tool of social change.

And then came the transformative flood tide begun in 1964. Only 16 years after the Goldwater debacle, conservatives under Reagan, a onetime New Deal Democrat, took over the Republican Party and created perhaps the most powerful and devoutly conservative coalition in American history, their principal competition being the Tories who opposed the American Revolution and some pre-1861 supporters of slavery.

Those traitors, if I dare.

This forced both parties to become more ideological, with the Republicans eventually losing their liberal wing and the Democrats, an unwieldy collection of northern liberals and Southern conservatives and segregationists, eventually becoming a progressive party under the sway of, among others, women employed outside the home, minorities, and campus intellectuals shaped by 1960s rebellion.

That's the conventional myth. anyway. When it comes to Israel, the war machine, and corporate governance, they get what they want; the only one who doesn't are the people.

Indeed, 1964 was also a key moment in the life of the Democratic Party. That was the year Lyndon B. Johnson fought for, and won, a civil rights bill that transformed the lives of black people in America but also began a transformation of the character of the Democratic Party. Its Solid South withered away; former governor George C. Wallace of Alabama and former vice president Richard Nixon would woo and win many of those Southern Democrats in 1968, and Reagan would complete the transformation in 1980. Today, three-quarters of the House seats in the Old Confederacy are controlled by the GOP.

As a result, the Republicans, who once ran city machines in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and San Francisco, are now a resolutely Southern and suburban party. The Democrats, their dependence on the South for electoral primacy now a faint and painful memory, have evolved into a party whose strength resides in the Northeast, the Mid-Atlantic states, and the Pacific West.

And both parties are still evolving, the GOP most obviously.

An important new addition to the Republican Party, attracted into the GOP by Trump, is what Dennis Goldford, a Drake University political scientist, calls “the middle-finger segment of the American electorate.’’ Many of those voters were Democrats a generation ago.


Related: “There’s a good chunk of the Sanders people who could go with Trump."

Already moving that way, and that must be why Trump is talking about debating Sanders instead -- or not.

The Goldwater insurgency eventually produced an entirely different Republican Party, and there are some similarities to the Trump ascendancy, particularly in the ire or worry it inspires in some.

“The Republicans seem to be about to nominate a candidate whose views of war and peace and other subjects have alarmed and alienated great numbers of people in his own party,’’ the commentator Joseph Alsop wrote on the eve of the GOP convention in 1964. The columnist Walter Lippmann, who by 1964 was regarded as the mouthpiece of the capital establishment, had a similar view. “Senator Goldwater,’’ he said, “has a passion to divide and dominate.’’

I'm working on a Trump foreign policy post and will have it available as soon as possible.

That alarm — and that passion — takes its modern form in Trump, whose contempt for what Capitol Hill parliamentarians call the “regular order’’ is if anything greater than that of Goldwater, who was liked by Democrats and was friendly with John F. Kennedy.

That's explains the antiwar inklings in Nicaragua.

The agony in the modern Republican Party may be best reflected in the pages of The National Review, the conservative magazine that was founded by William F. Buckley Jr. and that provided much of the philosophical rigor of the Goldwater movement.

In the space of four pages in its June 13 issue, Ramesh Ponnuru warned that Trump “would make the Republican Party less conservative while simultaneously discrediting conservatism with large portions of the public, perhaps for many years,’’ while another writer, Jay Nordlinger, added: “He is the brand of the party. As I see it, or smell it, an odor now attaches to the GOP, and it will linger long past 2016, no matter what happens on Election Day.’’

Have you smelled what's coming from the other end of the aisle?

The verdict of Election Day may be the least significant part of this. Like Andrew Jackson in the first third of the 19th century, Mr. Trump is an unusual political figure, with no apparent successor of even remotely equal voltage. But the emergence of Trump as the GOP nominee has itself presented the Republican Party with either the threat or the opportunity to change its composition and its image, as the early Democrats did under Jackson. 

Andrew Jackson is without a doubt one of my favorite presidents.

The Manhattan businessman appeals to a group of voters the Republicans have had difficulty attracting — working-class whites and those in sales and clerical positions. 

They used to call them Reagan Democrats, and  “have officially deregistered as a Republican” a long time ago.

Along with the middle-finger voters, Americans with this profile have from time to time backed Republicans; they supported Reagan, for example, in 1980 and 1984. But they haven’t become enduringly aligned with the party. It’s possible Trump could move them into the GOP permanently.

“If that happened, and if it persisted, the Republicans would be a very different party,’’ said John C. Green, director of the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron. “Trump doesn’t have to win to reorganize the coalition. If he simply gets a different set of voters than George W. Bush and John McCain attracted, and if it persisted, we could see a reorganization of all of our politics, including the Democratic Party.’’

The Democrats have had their rebellions, too, the last one occurring as the young Hillary Rodham, a onetime “Goldwater Girl,’’ was coming of age politically as an activist student at Wellesley College and later as a law student at Yale.


Has he already forgotten Sanders?

The assault on the party establishment and the effort to reshape the party after Vietnam and the youth rebellions is congruent with the life of another onetime presidential candidate, former senator Gary Hart of Colorado, who was the campaign manager for Senator George S. McGovern of South Dakota in 1972 and later was a reform-oriented presidential candidate in 1984 and in 1988.

The Hart critique has eerie similarities to the current crisis in the Republican Party.

“I don’t think the Democratic Party has ever gotten ahead of the change curve,’’ Hart said in an interview. “We’ve been responding to events more than anticipating them. But so have the Republicans. . . . Trump took over a party that was stagnant and exploited people’s frustrations.’’

Now those frustrations are expressed and addressed in a Republican Party platform that will likely attract careful attention and likely will be studied by historians for decades. The meaning of the Trump moment can only now be guessed at — just as was true of those struggling to make sense of Goldwater’s nomination in 1964.

The 2016 platform, and the party that is to ratify it, represents a major departure in American history. The import and impact will become clear only as the years throw perspective. They may prove, as so many Trump critics inside the Republican Party are arguing, a recipe for trouble come Election Day and a longer term narrowing of GOP prospects. They may prove quite the opposite....


Sneak peek at some of the platform:

Trump keeps distance in GOP platform fight on LGBT rights

He's caught in the middle, but if Caitlyn Jenner were to walk into Trump Tower and want to use a bathroom, Trump said would be comfortable with her choosing any bathroom she wanted, “That is correct,” and Jenner used the women’s room — without incident — at the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Manhattan."

Revere police look for man who peered in on teen changing in dressing room
Mom berated by customer for breast-feeding baby in Target
Girl barred from prom for wearing suit has her prom night

"A superintendent of a Vermont school district says educators are rethinking its dress code after a girls-only assembly about inappropriate clothing at a middle school caused a stir last month. The Valley News reports dissatisfaction with Woodstock Union Middle School's dress code boiled over following an April 22 assembly in which female teachers addressed students about dress code violations. Parents say a teacher told the girls that violating the dress code can distract boys in class...."

Now dance to the music!

Someone stepped in sh**, though:

Trump and the Supreme Court fight
Trump unveils list of 11 potential Supreme Court justices

Obama did not make the list, and Ginsburg will be the judge of those -- or not

In any event, she should resign due to incompetence.

The meaning of patriotism, 2016 version

Cleveland is Donald Trump’s chance to power up

"France attack could boost Trump ahead of National Convention" by Tracy Jan and Jim O’Sullivan Globe Staff  July 16, 2016

WASHINGTON — With terrorism at the forefront of voters’ concerns — and a centerpiece of Donald Trump’s campaign — the massacre that killed at least 84 people as they celebrated Bastille Day on a waterfront promenade in Nice plays into Trump’s tough rhetoric against Muslims and immigrants. The coup in Turkey Friday would only seem to add to anxieties over an uncertain world.

The coup has Europe on the edge of conflagration.

Trump’s responses after the recent mass shootings and terror attacks indicate he doesn’t have the temperament to be commander in chief. But, in days of heightened anxiety, some Republicans argue that Clinton’s steadiness may not be enough in the eyes of voters.

“Steady how?” said former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown, a Republican Trump supporter. “Steady as a continuation of this president’s policies? They don’t want that. They kind of like that Donald Trump is a little unpredictable in that area, because it keeps our enemies off guard. You don’t know what he’s going to do. You don’t know what he’s thinking.”

He's another Nixon! A potential nuclear madman!

Brown would have made a good VP choice, even if he wouldn't have helped in New Hampshire.

In the wake of the November 2015 Paris attacks and the December shootings in San Bernardino, some political analysts had predicted that voters would reject Trump’s off-the-cuff style and opt for a more somber, calming candidate, but Trump’s bombast led to just the opposite.

That deserves a second look, and then there is the thing in Britain. 

What's wrong with society's managers and opinion makers being wrong all the time?

A Quinnipiac University poll released this week showed voters in three key swing states viewed Trump as more effective than Clinton when it comes to fighting the Islamic State. In Florida, 57 percent of voters, regardless of how they intend to vote, favored Trump on the issue, compared to 35 percent for Clinton. A roughly 10-point margin was also reflected in Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Say again?

Former Mississippi governor Haley Barbour, who chaired the Republican National Committee in the 1990s, said in an interview Friday [that] public dissatisfaction with the Obama administration’s handling of terrorism would work to Trump’s benefit. “Normally, the economy and jobs, incomes, would be the biggest issue by far, but this terrorism is being repeated so often that it rises very high in people’s minds.”

Aaaah! Get mind off that economy -- even to the point of hurting your own chances in November!

But to win the general election, it will not be enough for Trump to simply project strength, some Republican analysts say; he needs to also provide substantive policies.

Will he? Or will "change" be enough like it was for Obummer?

“These national security issues, if handled correctly by Trump, will certainly play to his advantage,” said Ryan Williams, a Republican strategist. “Trump already projects strength and toughness. At this point people want him to project seriousness and inspire confidence in his ability to lead during difficult times.”

Where is W when you really need him?

Clinton, on the other hand, may have the foreign policy experience Trump lacks, but Williams said that could also be a liability because many Americans do not trust her judgment after the Benghazi attacks.

The new Quinnipiac poll showed that swing-state voters see Trump as far more trustworthy than Clinton and think he would be a stronger leader, but they said Clinton would do a better job responding to an international crisis and is better prepared overall to be president.

William Galston, a former policy advisor to President Clinton and now a senior fellow at Brookings, said Trump’s decision to make terrorism a major theme in his campaign does not mean he has always reacted to the issue in a “politically accepted manner. It’s a matter of demonstrating that you understand the kind of temperament that the American people are looking for.”


At least the Globe makes you think.

David Wade, a former longtime aide to Secretary of State John Kerry, said moments like the Nice attacks tend to have a “focusing effect” for voters.

Oh, MAN!

“The experience argument tilts towards Clinton and she carries the day on demeanor, but all eyes will be on how Trump responds now and in Cleveland,” Wade said. “If enough Americans decide this is about open borders and Islamophobia, then the ugly strain of populism that Trump taps into may find some xenophobic traction. Islamophobia would be the vermouth that mixes one toxic cocktail alongside the bathtub gin of Trump’s immigration bombast.”

What's he been drinking?

But he said he does not believe that angry coalition could translate into a winning one. 

Slander Trump voters.

Democrat Hillary Clinton’s convention in Philadelphia is expected to focus on unity; she has not signaled that national security will be a major theme for the Democratic National Convention....

Then she will be perceived as totally out of touch. You can't constantly wave fear and false flag psyops in front of the public's faces and then expect them to discard it all next week!

At least there won't be any terror event at that one.


"Donald Trump’s rise culminates at GOP convention" by Steve Peoples Associated Press  July 18, 2016

CLEVELAND — The man who opened his campaign as a late-night TV punchline will face the nation as the Republican Party standard-bearer, delivering what could be the most watched convention speech of all time.

Donald Trump will do so in a time of tumult at home and abroad.

Authorities said three police officers were shot and killed Sunday in Baton Rouge, La., where the slaying of a black man by white police officers this month led to protests nationwide and heightened concerns about the state of race relations in America.

Trump quickly blamed a “lack of leadership” for that shooting, taking to his Twitter and Facebook pages to say he was grieving for the officers killed. “We demand law and order,” he wrote.

That won Nixon the White House.

In the days before, Trump’s choice of Governor Mike Pence of Indiana as his running mate was overshadowed by a terror attack in France and attempted coup in Turkey.

Yeah, I'll be dealing with Pence below because he is speaking tonight.

Protests are widely expected outside the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, where the city’s police chief, Calvin Williams, said Sunday that it seems everyone is coming to town to “exercise their First Amendment rights.” 

That narrative will soon change.

Hundreds of protesters massed outside the arena Sunday, but no trouble was reported.

Trump and his allies appear to have quashed a rebellion from the so-called “Never Trump” movement. Rebel delegates still vow to cause convention mischief, but Trump will get an immediate boost when the nomination roll call starts with Alabama.

At the microphone will be delegation chairman Jeff Sessions, the first US senator to endorse Trump and one of his most full-throated supporters in Congress.

Trump has run a politically incorrect and unscripted campaign, which has successfully tapped into a wave of populist anger that few others saw as the race for president began more than a year ago.

Trump has thrilled supporters with a willingness to hurl insults at Democrats and Republicans alike, tearing them down them with pet nicknames, “Little Marco” and “Crooked Hillary” among them.

George W did the same thing, but back then it was cute.

Yet his lack of discipline and disorganized campaign has turned off many GOP leaders. His blunt tone and aggressive approach to immigration and terrorism has done the same with key segments of general election voters: women, blacks, and Hispanics, especially.

According to any number of preference polls, Trump heads into the convention as one of the most unpopular major party nominees ever.

And yet he is right there with her and rising in the polls.

All of it makes the convention starting Monday must-see TV.


“He doesn’t have natural filters,” New York GOP Chairman Ed Cox said. “Let’s see about the acceptance speech. That’s probably going to be the most watched acceptance speech ever.”

Not by me.

An estimated 30 million people watched 2012 nominee Mitt Romney address the convention four years ago. After setting ratings records throughout the Republican primary season, Trump could very well shatter that number.

I don't think I watched his, either.

But what those tuning in will see between the chairman’s opening gavel Monday afternoon and when about 125,000 balloons fall from the rafters at Quicken Loans Arena at the end of Trump’s speech Thursday night remains, to a large degree, a mystery.


The Trump campaign has not yet released a full list of convention speakers, or say who will speak when, but plenty of Republicans are skipping the show — including the GOP’s two living ex-presidents and its last three nominees.


While an official printed convention program features Ohio Governor John Kasich and Senator Rob Portman near the front, neither will speak or even appear inside the convention hall. 

I'm glad they cleared that up.

The only professional athlete on the program is pro golfer Natalie Gulbis, after college football star Tim Tebow called his attendance “a rumor.” Ivanka Trump’s rabbi, scheduled to deliver the opening prayer, also backed out.

The preconvention show got off to a rocky start, as the addition of Pence to the ticket dragged out over a few days amid rumblings that Trump was having second thoughts.

Trump called the Indiana governor “my first choice” when introducing him Saturday in New York but spent most of his 28-minute speech talking about anything but his new running mate and spent only a few seconds with him on stage.

He'll get his spot on it later.


It's the "coronation of a potential leader of the free world," and dad would have been proud

Let the festivities begin!

"Hillary Clinton, anti-Trump forces catch flak on Day 1" by Matt Viser and Tracy Jan Globe Staff  July 19, 2016

CLEVELAND — Republicans gaveled their convention to order Monday and made final preparations to place their future in the hands of Donald Trump, but their quest for party unity fell short as chaos erupted on the Republican National Convention floor.

Anti-Trump delegates attempted to force a roll call vote that would allow individual delegates to ignore the primary results in their home states and instead vote their conscience. But the rebellion was quashed, likely the last gasp of a Never Trump movement, and paved the way for the coronation of Trump as the GOP nominee this week.

Trump himself strode to the stage late Monday to the strains of Queen’s “We are the Champions” as he introduced his wife, Melania, during prime time. She followed several speakers who highlighted the unsettled mood around the country and reminded viewers of the deadly 2012 attacks on Americans in Benghazi, Libya, while the presumptive Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, was secretary of state.

Melania Trump promoted a message of inclusiveness, a sentiment that was rarely expressed by a candidate who has built a campaign on dire warnings about Latino and Islamic immigration.

“Donald intends to represent all the people, not just some of the people,” she said. “That includes Christians and Jews and Muslims, it includes Hispanics and African-Americans and Asians, the poor and the middle class.” 

That was added to the web version, presumably after the print was on its way here.

But the earlier tensions on the convention floor over an attempt to allow a vote against Donald Trump created an inauspicious start of a four-day convention that is meant to project unity and offer viewers a more positive view of the most unorthodox, unlikely, and inexperienced candidate in recent memory.

“Roll call vote! Roll call vote!” delegates shouted as the rebellion started, as others yelled back, “Trump! Trump! Trump!”

For several minutes, no one stood at the podium in the glitzy Quicken Loans Arena and no one controlled the convention.

“I have no idea what’s going on right now,” Senator Mike Lee, a Utah Republican who had been leading the anti-Trump effort, told reporters. “This is surreal.”

Happens to me every morning between 6 and 8 a.m.

Trump allies and top party officials stifled the final insurrection attempt by the Never Trump movement by persuading delegates from several states to withdraw their signature from petitions. The Rules Committee then declared that stop-Trump forces had failed to force a floor vote. The maneuvering prompted the Colorado delegation — a crucial general election battleground state — to temporarily walk out of the convention in protest. Several other states were considering similar actions.

Who did they think they were, Sanders delegates?

“What are they afraid of?” Colorado delegate Brita Horn said after she walked off the convention floor. “I am not anti-Trump but I want him to earn our vote. We just want some transparency.”

There were months worth of primaries!

The successful effort to halt the rebellion featured allies of the outsider candidate, who won the primary based on anti-establishment anger, using their control of the gavel and raw insider leverage to subdue dissent. They derailed the effort on a voice vote.

“The ironic thing is the Washington establishment that Trump used to vilify are now working hand in hand with the Trump campaign to keep the status quo,” said Steve Lonegan, a New Jersey Republican who was leading a super PAC funding the delegate revolt.


Maybe he has had too much to drink.

The result of the party power play, however, meant that little stood in the way of Trump’s nomination Thursday night. The candidate made a brief appearance on stage Monday night to introduce his wife, who broke from her usual quiet, background role and gave a prime-time speech to the delegates.

She vouched for her husband’s softer side, saying he is an intense fighter but also has compassion that is often overlooked.

“He is tough when he has to be, but he’s also kind and fair and caring,” Melania Trump said. “This kindness is not always noted. But it is there for all to see.”

Donald Trump himself displayed rare brevity. He emerged from a cloud of vapor on stage and spoke for less than a minute, introducing his wife after claiming, several times, “We’re going to win so big.”

He said he wasn't going to show up until Thursday.

Trump now has an opportunity to rebrand his campaign in a way that is more attractive to a general election audience. One looming question is whether the pick of Mike Pence as his running mate — a choice designed to calm fears of Republican Party faithful — is the beginning of a more disciplined candidacy, or an aberration.

Melania Trump’s appearance capped a day that featured reality television stars (Willie Robertson of “Duck Dynasty”) and 1980s heartthrobs (Scott Baio, of “Charles in Charge” fame) as well as politicians current (Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas) and past (former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani ).

The sheriff of Milwaukee County in Wisconsin, David Clarke, energized the crowd by declaring, ‘‘Blue Lives Matter in this country.’’ It was an explicit reference to the recent deaths of two black men at the hands of police officers and the slaying of officers in Texas and Louisiana.

He sounded bitter.

See: "The peak came in 2004, during the reelection effort for George W. Bush. That year, nearly 7 percent of the Republican delegates were black."

No wonder he felt alone up there.

During the evening session, speaker after speaker highlighted what they called dangers of a Clinton presidency. Some pointed to their children who were killed by illegal immigrants. Others recounted their experiences during the 2012 attacks on the US outpost in Benghazi.

“I blame Hillary Clinton personally for the death of my son,” said Patricia Smith, whose son Sean died in that attack. “That’s right — Hillary for prison. She deserves to be in stripes.”

Technically true, but that arouses great response from so many!

Giuliani gave one of the most impassioned speeches of the night, shouting into the microphone and working the crowd into a fervor.

“I am sick and tired of the defamation of Donald Trump by the media and by the Clinton campaign!” he yelled. “I am sick and tired of it!”

I want to know why you destroyed a crime scene and sent all that WTC steel to Chianti be melted down, Rudy.

Many of the party’s heaviest hitters, including 2012 nominee Mitt Romney, are sitting out the convention.

I'll drink to that!

Intra-party feuding continued on the airwaves Monday. Trump ally Newt Gingrich on Monday said that the Bush family is behaving “childishly” for not getting behind Trump and refusing to show up at the convention.

“The Republican Party has been awfully good to the Bushes and they’re showing remarkably little gratitude,” Gingrich said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

That's just the way they are.

Shortly after RNC chairman Reince Priebus gaveled the convention to order at 1 p.m., the party tried to project an image of unity: a live band played the first song of the convention, “Happy Together,” with a bouncy refrain of “So happy together, we’re happy together.”

Anti-Trump forces who raised millions of dollars throughout the spring in a failed effort to derail Trump during the primary came to Cleveland with an 11th-hour strategy. They set up a “command center” in downtown Cleveland, minutes away from the Quicken Loans Arena.

In order to force the fight to the floor, a majority of delegates from seven states had to sign a petition. Organizers said that nine states, among them Maine, had the necessary signatures. Former US Senator Gordon Humphrey, from New Hampshire, filed the paperwork with convention officials.

Humphrey caused a kerfuffle, and LePage made them retract it.

But then the arm-twisting began. Some delegates removed their names from the petition and the number of states with eligible petitions dropped to six — one short of the number needed.

Earlier, while walking out of a Rules Committee meeting, chairman Bruce Ash of Arizona, compared the dissents to a group of soldiers fighting a lost cause.

“This is the last ragtag remnants of the Japanese army who were found on the island of Saipan three later because they hadn’t heard the war is over,” Ash said. “Donald Trump is our presumptive nominee. He became our nominee and he will win in November irrespective of a few people who have bruised egos from the contests that we have had over the past several months.” 

I wish they were.

Janet Fogarty of Scituate, one of three Massachusetts members on the rules committee, also declared the GOP civil war over Trump to be over.

“The fights have been fought and it is time for the party to come together,” she said.

About 15 members of the defeated Delegates Unbound movement joined their leader, Dane Waters, a Florida Republican, for dinner at a restaurant a half-mile from the Quicken Loans Arena. The group included delegates from Texas, Iowa, Michigan, Virginia, and New Hampshire.

Humphrey, a former senator from New Hampshire, called the floor fight an “ugly spectacle” and a “shameful moment” for the GOP.

“We’ve now seen the Donald Trump presidency in prototype and it’s rule by force,” said Humphrey, who had supported Governor John Kasich’s candidacy. “Trump and his delegates might not be fascist but today they put on a very good act. This is a crisis moment.”

They are the minority behaving like fascists!

Asked what he was having for dinner, Humphrey said, “Mainly I’m drinking.”

I thought so.


"Republicans select Donald Trump as nominee" by Matt Viser Globe Staff  July 20, 2016

CLEVELAND — The Republican Party officially crowned Donald Trump as its presidential nominee on Tuesday night, offering a formal coda to a rollicking, raucous, and deeply divisive primary, and giving the billionaire businessman control over the party’s future.

The vote, which officially quashed the anti-Trump movement that for months has tried but failed to stop him, came on the second day of the convention as the party sought to rapidly move past a dismal beginning that has been marked more than anything else by accusations that Melania Trump plagiarized parts of a speech that Michelle Obama delivered in 2008.

Also on my front page:

"The apparently poorly vetted address is among the highest profile failures of Trump’s iconoclastic campaign. With no high-wattage speakers lined up for Wednesday night’s convention program to take the focus off the apparent plagiarism, the campaign risks Melania Trump’s speech becoming the defining moment of multiple news cycles and likely bleeding well into Wednesday’s coverage.

OMG! Never mind the subtle terminology, but that's already forgotten, and who is deciding to continue covering it?

The constant coverage crowded out news that Donald Trump would officially became the party’s nominee for president Tuesday and the campaign’s theme for the day, which was supposed to be focused on jobs and the economy, and it highlighted the vast gap between the pro-Trump flank of the party and the Republicans who’ve been much more reluctant to support Trump. “I would expect whoever did it to resign,” Karl Rove, a Republican strategist, told The Wall Street Journal.

That's when I stopped reading this pos, and she didn't resign nor did Trump fire her. 

Odd the Repugs all cheering Michelle Obama's speech, though..

A collection of top Republicans who were already skeptical of Trump’s candidacy displayed increasing concern and Trump’s campaign refused to acknowledge anything wrong." 

That may portend a Trump presidency red flag.

But the party quickly turned toward its most unifying force, which finds its strength in stopping presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton from winning.

The most boisterous refrain of the night was the crowd chanting over and over: “Lock her up! Lock her up! Lock her up!”


Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey focused almost all of his remarks on Clinton, saying he was using his prosecutorial background to indict her tenure as secretary of state.

At one point, he blamed her for the terrorist group Boko Haram’s kidnapping of schoolgirls in Nigeria. He faulted her for the nuclear deal with Iran, for the lifting of the Cuban embargo, and for the actions of President Bashar Assad of Syria.

“Is she guilty or not guilty?” he asked again and again.

“Guilty!” the crowd responded each time.

Speaker after speaker ridiculed her judgment and her trustworthiness with lines of attack that are likely to become the central part of the Trump campaign’s case.

“Hillary Clinton will say anything, do anything, and be anything to get elected president,” Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said. “She lied about her e-mails, she lied about her server, she lied about Benghazi. . . . Not since Baghdad Bob has there been a figure with such a tortured relationship with the truth.”

He obviously doesn't read a Globe.

Several speakers also brought up former president Bill Clinton’s infidelities, and faulted Hillary Clinton for not sticking up for women who brought accusations against her husband.

Following Day, a top official from the Ultimate Fighting Championship praised Trump for his business acumen and his willingness to work with him when others criticized the mixed martial arts league as promoting "blood sport."

Didn't Kraft just get a piece of that?

One theme for the day was supposed to be the economy and helping to protect American jobs, but at times it veered to the edge of promotions for Trump’s own businesses.

Too much wine at the hotel.

The night also offered Trump a chance to showcase his children.

The support for elected officials seemed tepid among the delegates. McConnell was booed by the crowd, and when a group of senators took the stage, the applause was light.


Although Trump effectively wrapped up the nomination nearly three months ago when he won the Indiana primary and his last remaining rivals dropped out, the image of hundreds of delegates casting votes for him was historic.

The party of Lincoln, the party of Reagan — and the party that just four years ago nominated Mitt Romney — is now the party of Trump.

Trump received well more than the 1,237 delegate votes that he needed, winning 1,725 during a roll call vote in which each state rose and declared how their state’s delegates would be allotted. Senator Ted Cruz received 475 delegates, followed by 120 for Governor John Kasich of Ohio, 114 for Senator Marco Rubio, seven for Ben Carson, three for Jeb Bush, and two for Rand Paul....

“I’ve had enough.” 


Here is how the Mass. delegation cast their votes for nomination:

"Battle for Mass. GOP convention delegates intensifies" by Jim O’Sullivan Globe Staff  April 19, 2016

Donald Trump, often boastful of his talent for brilliant deals, could get a raw one from Massachusetts.

Trump won an overwhelming victory in the state’s Republican presidential primary last month, his largest to date. But it could be Ted Cruz, who finished a distant fourth here, who ends up with a plurality of Massachusetts delegates after convention balloting this summer. Some Republicans, unhappy with either choice, still hold out hope for an alternative candidate, but none has emerged.

I'm ashamed!

Senior state Republicans say jockeying for delegates and votes has intensified in the last few weeks. Cruz backers and unaffiliated establishment Republicans are angling for delegates who would be willing to switch from Trump if he fails to prevail in the first round of balloting at the GOP’s July convention in Cleveland.

Most of the 42 delegates who will attend the convention will be picked at April 30 state caucuses, and the lobbying is likely to further intensify between now and then.

One senior party strategist, speaking on condition of anonymity, said he expected some delegate candidates to claim to be Trump loyalists, but actually plan to vote for Cruz or another contender on the later ballots.

Using databases of supporters compiled before the primary, representatives of all the campaigns have been e-mailing and calling, lining up delegate slates and encouraging Republicans to attend the caucuses.

If the anti-Trump factions, some of them aligned with Republican Governor Charlie Baker, succeed in picking off delegates between now and the July party confab, it will likely enrage Trump backers, many of whom already cite disenchantment with the political system as a reason for their support.

“I’m not going to say there will be pitchforks in the street, but there will certainly be the expected discontent,” said state Representative Geoff Diehl, a Whitman Republican and the state’s top elected official to back Trump.

“There will be outrage,” Diehl added.

Already, Massachusetts conservatives are angry with Baker.

RelatedBaker is still the most popular US governor

So give him a medal then.

Backers of both Cruz and Trump, as well as unaffiliated party insiders, say privately they expect party leaders to work behind the scenes to deprive Trump of delegates — beyond those required by party rules. But whether the alternative is Cruz or someone who has not yet emerged is unknown.

State GOP chairwoman Kirsten Hughes said the caucuses that will determine nearly two-thirds of the state’s delegates will hinge on campaigns’ organizational abilities, and called the results difficult to predict.

“It depends who turns out on the caucuses. I just don’t know,” Hughes said.

The jockeying for Massachusetts’ delegates is fraught with tensions splitting both the national and state parties, as rank-and-file voters buck the more moderate establishments at both levels.

Baker has demonstrated a lack of interest in either Trump or Cruz, and signaled he likely will not attend the convention. But with Cruz narrowing the gap in delegates nationally, Baker, a popular Republican in a left-leaning state, could opt to play a role at what may become a contested convention in Cleveland.

That could allow him to present himself as acting in the interests of moderate voters back home, while simultaneously helping the party establishment by steering delegates toward an anti-Trump effort.

In an e-mail, the governor’s political adviser, Jim Conroy, said Baker was “optimistic — and that ultimately the Republican Party will emerge stronger.”

Then he ran off to the RJC meeting.

Trump’s organizers won a victory last week when the state GOP’s delegate allocation panel met and awarded Trump five of the 12 at-large delegates, one shy of the six they had sought. But Trump backers were so leery of establishment chicanery that about two dozen protested outside the party offices, hoisting Trump campaign signs on the sidewalk.

They should be leery if this article is accurate. 

The 12 delegates who fill those slots will ultimately be chosen in May by the Republican State Committee, over which Baker recently increased control by backing a slate of moderates who had supported him.

Meanwhile, each of the state’s nine congressional districts will pick three delegates and three alternates on April 30. The remaining delegates are Hughes, longtime national committeeman Ron Kaufman, and national committeewoman Chanel Prunier.

Because of the results of Massachusetts’ March 1 primary, on the first ballot in Cleveland Trump will receive votes from 22 state delegates, Governor John Kasich of Ohio will collect eight, and Cruz, who has been conducting an aggressive delegate recruitment effort nationally, will pick up four. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, who suspended his campaign, is working to hang on to all of the delegates he won, including those in Massachusetts.

Trump has proved far less adroit at the inside game of caucus-organizing than he has at garnering free media, and Cruz has excelled. As he has become Trump’s closest competitor, the Texas senator has also consolidated some support among national establishment Republican figures.

Then they thought about it and did a quick about-face after Wisconsin.

Caucus dynamics here also favor Cruz over Trump because, unlike the primary, they are open only to registered Republicans. Trump won much of his support in the Massachusetts primary from unenrolled voters.

I voted Sanders on the other side.

Trump has repeatedly voiced grievances over the delegate process, calling the system rigged.

Convention rules, meanwhile, could change at party officials’ whim. Party insiders are watching closely as the RNC’s Standing Committee on Rules meets this week in Florida, part of a run-up to the July convention when Trump backers will be on alert for signs of sabotage.

In Massachusetts, Trump supporters say they have whittled away at the organizational advantages enjoyed by Cruz, who, political insiders say, has long had the best in-state organization.

One of those joining the Trump cause is Vincent DeVito, a Boston-based attorney who became entangled in Baker’s controversial 2014 convention victory over Mark Fisher, a candidate backed by the Tea Party movement.

“The Trump campaign is now highly organized in the state and will be working between now and April 30 to turn out the caucuses throughout the state,” said Amy Carnevale, a government affairs specialist and state committeewoman advising the Trump campaign.


So how did he do?

"Trump dominates Mass. GOP caucuses" by Jim O’Sullivan Globe Staff  April 30, 2016

BRAINTREE — Massachusetts Republicans sounded a second loud blast of support for Donald J. Trump on Saturday, handing the GOP presidential front-runner a sweeping victory in the party’s caucuses despite his early organizational deficit.

Trump, who won the state’s March 1 primary, virtually assured himself support from a majority of Massachusetts delegates at the GOP convention in July, even if voting goes past a first ballot.

Of the 27 delegates picked Saturday, at least 23 of them had received the campaign’s blessing.

Trump picked up between six and nine additional delegates who had been vetted by his campaign and pledged to support him on every subsequent nomination ballot if necessary, Republican insiders said. Slates of Trump loyalists appeared to capture all of the available delegate slots, including alternates, in at least six of the state’s nine congressional districts.

The victory was something of a breakthrough for Trump, who has trailed chief rival US Senator Ted Cruz of Texas in other states’ contests where organization figures prominently. To win caucuses, campaigns need to identify and contact supporters, then get enough of them to town halls, middle schools, and Elks lodges, usually on untraditional voting days.

“The Cruz people, their jaws are agape, because that’s usually their territory,” said Louis Murray, a Quincy financial planner who was elected a delegate from the Trump slate in the 8th Congressional District. “And my hat’s off to them in every other state where they’ve done it; they’ve out-organized everyone else.”


"Trump speaks for the average American worker. He wants prosperity at home and peace abroad. His conservatism is not a dogma. Trump seeks to conserve our best values at home, and not go abroad promoting monolithic internationalism — a monster of many tentacles, as John Quincy Adams warned. Trump is not a conservative as defined by George F. Will on one of his Weekly Standard cruises. I believe Trump has been under political assault by the media and establishment because he is beholden to no one."

Trump has established a sturdy lead in the nominating contest by winning primaries, which draw more voters and hinge more on media exposure. In Massachusetts’s March 1 primary, he won more than 49 percent of the vote, his largest share of the vote at the time.

But Trump backers here worried that Cruz could team with the state’s more moderate GOP establishment to deprive Trump of delegates for the Cleveland convention, as he has in several other states. Those delegate victories prompted Trump to rip the selection process as “rigged.”

But senior party officials said Trump has lured new voters, roughly doubling the turnout for Saturday’s caucuses four years ago.

Under state party rules, due to the primary results, Trump is guaranteed 22 of the state’s 42 delegates on the convention’s first ballot. Governor John Kasich of Ohio will collect eight, and Cruz four. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, who suspended his campaign, is working to retain all of the delegates he won, including eight in Massachusetts.

Five of the 12 at-large delegates, who will be elected later this month, are bound to Trump on the first ballot, with the remaining seven scattered among the other delegates.

But if Trump cannot win enough delegates in the states that have yet to vote, the convention would go to a second ballot, where all of the Massachusetts delegates would be free to back other candidates, making vows of fealty to the billionaire businessman a key test in Saturday’s caucuses.

In Braintree, where more than 400 people packed a standing-room only town hall, caucus-goers elected a delegate bound to Rubio on the first ballot who promised to back Trump on subsequent ballots throughout the convention.

“The three of us have been vetted by Donald J. Trump and his advisers in New York,” said Ken Nasif, a retired judge living in West Roxbury, referring to the other two delegates elected off the Trump slate, Murray and Republican state representative Geoff Diehl of Whitman.

Nasif added, “If there’s a second ballot, you know I’m going to vote for Donald Trump forever.”

Trump’s slates managed to elect delegates in every congressional district, but he romped in the central part of the state, the northeast, western suburbs, and southeastern part of the state. The campaign appeared to show weakness in only two districts: the western 1st district and Boston-dominated 7th.

The caucus results also further underscored the differences between Republican Governor Charlie Baker, who has criticized Trump and said he will not vote for him, and large swaths of the state GOP. If the March primary pointed to a disconnect between Baker and the more than 300,000 voters who backed Trump, Saturday revealed a gulf separating the governor from his party’s most hard-core activists. 


Baker, despite asserting control over the state party committee earlier this year, shied away from trying to influence Saturday’s caucuses, party insiders said.

Many local Republican officeholders generally regarded as mainstream have drifted toward Trump, reflecting a national trend as officials acknowledge that Trump will likely emerge as the nominee.


“The dreaded establishment seems to be pretty much in favor of Trump,” said Ron Kaufman, a longtime national committeeman.

In Braintree, caucus-goers began lining up around 7 a.m., three hours before the scheduled start. Several said they had been worried by Cruz’s success in other caucuses and that they did not want to see a repeat of the 2012 caucuses, when backers of then-congressman Ron Paul felt they were cheated out of delegates.

While Cruz got less than 10 percent of the votes in March’s state primary, top Trump supporters here and unaffiliated senior Republicans acknowledged that his superior political organization posed a significant threat to Trump leading up to the caucuses.

“The real election happened between March 1 and today,” Murray said as voting wound down in Braintree. “The delegate race was heating up and Donald Trump said, ‘Hey, what do we need to do, who do we need to hire, how do we get the recruits to have a ground game?’ And he put a plan in place.”

After capturing the local district’s three delegate slots early in the afternoon, Trump supporters met on the town hall’s front steps, where Murray and Diehl, brandishing a megaphone, urged their comrades to stay and vote for the alternates.

All three of those slots, including one bound to Rubio on the first ballot, went to Trump backers.


RelatedAt state GOP, an unexpected fight

So how is Cleveland, guys?

"Some Mass. delegates are feeling it; others aren’t" by Michael Levenson Globe Staff  July 18, 2016

As the convention convenes Monday in Cleveland, Massachusetts is represented by a fractious bunch that includes first-time activists who proudly carry the Trump banner, party stalwarts who loathe Trump and are going to the convention to back other candidates, and a few officials trying to keep the big tent from collapsing.

The state’s 42 delegates will stay in the same hotel and represent a deep blue state whose Republican governor, Charlie Baker, has said he plans to skip the convention and will not vote for president in November because he cannot support Trump, Hillary Clinton, or the Libertarian ticket that includes his former mentor, Bill Weld. The refusal by some GOP leaders to give Trump their full support has infuriated delegates who ran specifically to back him at the convention.

“If you guys want to do that foolish behavior, you’re putting Hillary into the White House sooner,” said Arete Pascucci, a retired school administrator and Trump supporter from Lynn. “Just be quiet, join the team, and do something positive.”

Ken Nasif, a retired judge from West Roxbury and first-time delegate who tried to draft Trump to run for president in 2012, said he is also incensed that some of the state’s “so-called Republican leaders” have not rallied behind Trump.

“I think these folks should become Democrats and show their true side,” he said.

Nasif said he enjoyed Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal” and admires Trump’s business acumen, as well as his plans to deport 11 million illegal immigrants, build a wall along the US-Mexico border, and escalate the fight against the Islamic State.

“I think he has all the qualities that are needed right now in America,” Nasif said. “He’s not PC. He tells it like it is, and I admire it.”

Pascucci said she thought of Trump on July 4th, as she walked along the Esplanade and told her boyfriend, “Half these people don’t vote. They’re probably here illegally. And some of them — not to be rude — are all on these benefits, either legally or illegally.”

“Trump is saying if you want the benefits, get the benefits, but you have to earn them — they’re not coming for free,” Pascucci said. 

Unless you happen to be Israel, a war contractor, or some other corporate concern.

Rachel Miselman, a Roxbury television producer, also cited Trump’s hardline stance against illegal immigration as a reason she became a first-time delegate.

She said that, despite her background, she has not been deterred by Trump’s incendiary rhetoric about minorities or by a recent Tweet that was criticized as anti-Semitic.

“As a biracial Jew, what I like about Donald Trump is I feel like he would see me as Rachel — no nonsense,” she said.

But another delegate, Rachel Kemp, said she was troubled by that tweet, which showed Clinton next to a six-pointed star on a pile of money. The image had previously appeared on a website frequented by neo-Nazis and white supremacists.

“When you put a Star of David in a situation where it can be viewed as anti-Semitic, you just wonder, ‘What is he thinking?’ ” said Kemp, an investment banker from Dorchester and the only black woman elected to the Republican State Committee.

I'm thinking someone is trying to tar him.

Kemp, who backed Romney as a delegate to the 2012 convention, said she supports Trump but is hoping he will serve up more than just fiery, populist rhetoric at the convention....


They are an endangered species?

Meanwhile, outside the arena:

"Protests are small and peaceful on first day of convention" by Annie Linskey and Joshua Miller Globe Staff  July 18, 2016

CLEVELAND — The gathering to nominate one of the most polarizing presidential candidates in history, Donald Trump, inspired little in the way of protests on its first day.

The Rally to Stop Trump and March on the Republican National Convention? Organizers said “thousands” would attend. Hundreds was more like it.

The pro-Trump demonstration headlined by right-wing radio star Alex Jones? It attracted a good turnout maybe for mid-sized company’s picnic, but not really a national movement.

Wow, third paragraph in.

Protests are expected to continue — and perhaps grow — as the week progresses and thousands more descend on this Midwestern city for the quadrennial Republican festivities. But the opening few hours were just plain Cleveland calm.

“The convention is just starting,” said Gloria Rubac, who drove 24 hours from Houston to march in opposition to the Republican standard-bearer. She marveled at the number of journalists reporting on the story. “I don’t think I’ve ever been to a protest this well covered,” she said.

That's why I don't trust them.

Mayor Frank Jackson along with the city’s police chief, Calvin Williams, projected confidence at a news conference Monday morning, saying they’re prepared to protect large gatherings and ease tense standoffs between groups with conflicting views.

“We want to be sure that the protesters are safe walking through the streets of Cleveland,” said Williams. “And we want to be sure we have enough officers to respond if things turn otherwise.”

He said that the police are constantly communicating with “who we perceive to be the leaders” of the various groups organizing protests in the city.

It's all a show, inside and out.

These political demonstrations are occurring amid rising tensions nationally between police and the people who they protect, particularly in minority communities. Over the weekend three police officers were shot to death in Baton Rouge, La. That followed an attack in Dallas in which a gunman killed five officers.

Those killings happened after two black men were shot to death by police officers in Baton Rouge and near St. Paul, Minn. Parts of their interactions with police were recorded and widely distributed online.

Some evidence of the brewing tension was clear in Cleveland. “Film the police” was scrawled in black lettering on a white Jersey barrier just outside the Quicken Loans Arena, where the Republican convention is being held.

In the park where the main anti-Trump rally started on Monday, uniformed police stayed far from protesters.

Just like in California.

After listening to speeches for about an hour, the group marched through the city streets — chanting “No Trump, No KKK, No fascist USA” — toward the convention center. Uniformed police rode bikes or walked their bikes along the perimeter of the parade route.

A number of groups sent observers, evidence that there was — and still is — some expectation that there could be more trouble. They included a group of about 50 self-described “marshals,” activists who came specifically to observe the police; a dozen volunteers from Amnesty International, and about a dozen members of a “Peace Team.”

“We’re here to listen and resolve any kind of conflict,” said Peace Team member Bonnie DiGennaro. “Everything has been going along quite smoothly,” she reported.

The crowd seemed to include at least one member of each group that Trump has offended in his year-long quest to the Republican nomination. “He’s making Muslims seem like monsters,” said Sondos Mishal, a 17-year old Muslim student who came to protest Trump. “You get these looks now and different treatment, as if you don’t belong here.”

A feminist group carried a paper mache Trump sculpture. Black Lives Matters activists held fists in the air and demanded criminal justice reform.

Still, the crowd was notably thin — particularly when compared to last month’s outpouring for the city’s victorious basketball team.

Did the blogs ruin their false flag plans?

“This is a lot different from the other rally,” mused Giana Parsens, a 17-year-old Cleveland resident as she looked at scores of anti-Trump activists.

When the Cleveland Cavaliers won the National Basketball Association championship in June she arrived at the same park at 6 a.m. “It was just people all the way. I just couldn’t walk,” she said gesturing to an empty field across the street from the protest area.

At a pro-Trump event in the early afternoon, dozens more listened to speakers denounce Hillary Clinton. Among the speakers at the rally was Alex Jones, the conspiracy-minded media personality, who drew loud cheers from the crowd.

That's his problem right there.

He railed against “the globalists,” saying loudly that they are “the enemy.”

Jones lauded Trump for his “amazing courage” but said people shouldn’t put their faith in any one individual.

He learned from the Ron Paul money bombs, huh?

Tom Cody, a Trump supporter who lives just outside of Cleveland said he backs the presumptive GOP nominee “for change.”

Cody, who works for the local port authority, said Trump is “not part of the inner circle and he’s not a career politician.”

Asked whether he was worried about violence at protests this week, as several people openly carrying handguns in hip holsters walked by, Cody shook his head.

“Nah,” he said. “I think it’ll be quiet.”


Also see:

"What can a veteran of 1968 like myself counsel to those who are protesting against Trump? I have watched the rising conflicts at Trump events with a growing foreboding but also with relief that the protesters are standing up for their dignity against insults. My message to the anti-Trump protesters today is: Don’t surrender to the bullying, but also don’t play into the bully’s game plan. That can lead to political disaster, like the 60 percent majority for Nixon and Wallace in 1968. Be fully aware that there are paid informants and provocateurs in your midst. Work toward a united front against Trump, building bridges without bruises."

And they work for the government!

"Jorge Maya isn’t an American citizen. But the 23-year-old Mexican immigrant still traveled to Cleveland with some 35 others from Milwaukee to protest Donald Trump’s America."

It's just another day in Donald Trump’s America.

"Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, another former Trump rival who recently resurrected his Senate campaign, has agreed to appear at the convention, via a video address on Wednesday. Senator Rand Paul, a former Trump rival and critic who said last week that he would skip the convention, was listed as an invited guest to a Kentucky delegation bourbon reception. His office did not respond to an inquiry about whether he attended. (Another slight: the Ohio delegation, which had overwhelmingly supported Ohio Governor John Kasich, one of the candidates Trump beat in the primary, was pushed to stage left, behind Pennsylvania)."

Senator Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican is “supporting, not keeping his distance” to demonstrate party loyalty, while keeping nominee Donald Trump at arm’s length. Other rising GOP stars, such as South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, an Indian American who is her state’s first minority and female governor, turned down an opportunity to speak.

That's where the protests ended

Time for the VP pick then:

Seven pols who could be Donald Trump’s VP pick (and two who won’t)

Trump meets with running-mate hopefuls

"Welcome to the reality show that is the 2016 presidential election. Donald Trump said he was postponing a planned 11 a.m. Friday announcement “in light of the horrible attack in Nice, France,” in a bizarre stutter-step that seemed like a made-for-TV script for a cliffhanger [as] news shifted throughout the day."

That is the same media that is going to linger over Melania.

"Adding conservative heft, Trump picks Pence as VP" by Matt Viser Globe Staff  July 16, 2016

WASHINGTON — Governor Mike Pence of Indiana, 57, a former six-term congressman and current Indiana governor, brings political experience to a nominee who has none. Where Donald Trump is brash and overstated, Pence is more reserved. And while grass-roots groups have been wary of Trump, Pence was an early supporter of the Tea Party movement.

Pence was seen as a safer and more traditional pick than some of the other candidates under consideration, and his selection began to calm worries among establishment Republicans in Washington who have grown concerned about Trump’s swashbuckling style. It is also likely to energize a conservative base that has been skeptical of Trump’s more moderate positions.

“Mike Pence would be an outstanding vice president,” said David McIntosh, the president of the Club for Growth, which ran ads against Trump. “Today’s news gives a similar hope that Mike Pence will be effective in pulling the Republican ticket toward economic conservatism and limited government.”

But while he adds a more predictable presence to Trump’s campaign, Democrats immediately seized on his staunchly conservative positions and some of his harsh comments about gays and lesbians that have caused his approval ratings in Indiana to plummet. 

So it isn't going to help Trump win the supposed swing state of Indiana, is it?

John Podesta, the campaign chairman for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, said, “Pence is the most extreme pick in a generation.”

“By picking Mike Pence as his running mate, Donald Trump has doubled down on some of his most disturbing beliefs by choosing an incredibly divisive and unpopular running mate known for supporting discriminatory politics and failed economic policies that favor millionaires and corporations over working families,” Podesta said.

Podesta pooh-pooh!

RelatedUS income gap widened last year as top 1 percent gained most

And it has yawned to its widest since the 1920s under Obama.

Pence — who often bills himself as “a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican, in that order” — was born and raised in Columbus, Ind. His grandfather immigrated from Ireland and drove a bus. His father ran gas stations.

He grew up in a family of Irish Catholic Democrats but grew more religiously conservative while attending Hanover College. He earned a law degree from Indiana University and married his wife, Karen, in 1985. He ran a conservative policy research group and hosted a radio show in Indianapolis, but he also had several early losses when trying to run for Congress. Pence narrowly won a congressional race in 2000 and immediately began railing against big government.

House Speaker Paul Ryan “can think of no better choice.” 

I can, but you'll have to give me a minute.... or two.... why don't you take five? 

Better yet, sleep on it.

Trump and Pence have little prior history, making it unclear whether they can develop the type of chemistry that can be important for a high-pressure political campaign, not to mention governing while in office.

VP's (except for Cheney) are pretty much yes men.

Pence endorsed Trump’s rival Senator Ted Cruz, and he has publicly disagreed with him on a wide range of issues. Pence criticized Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims entering the United States as “offensive and unconstitutional.” Pence also supported the Iraq war and has embraced the types of free trade agreements that Trump rails against.

The odd couple.

He has also apparently been even more critical of Trump in private.

“It’s disorienting to have had commiserated w/someone re: Trump - about how he was unacceptable, & then to see that someone become Trump’s VP,” Dan Senor, a top Republican consultant and adviser, wrote on Twitter on Friday.


He was an spokesman in Iraq under Bush!

Trump’s pick capped a confusing several days in which Trump appeared unsure of which candidate he wanted to pick. He held an audition of sorts, appearing with some of the finalists, and then sat with family members for more intense discussions earlier in the week.

Hope he taped it for a later show.

The final list included Pence, Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

The road was bumpy right from the start for Christie, who had too many problems:

NJ Transit reaches deal with rail workers, averting strike

Chris Christie at work! 

Newark to OK strong police review board; union vows fight

"Newark’s police department will shift to a more community-focused approach to policing, add more training and submit to federal monitoring as part of a consent decree resulting from a Justice Department probe that found that officers routinely used excessive force and made street stops that disproportionately affected minorities."

"An off-duty New Jersey police officer was found shot to death in his car Monday in the parking lot of a closed movie theater complex.... like a scene right out of a movie

Just don't drink the water in New Jersey, and.... 

"Pence is at least as qualified as any of the other Republicans who were willing to be considered. The most optimistic spin to put on the choice of Pence is that Trump could have done worse: Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. By failing to bring in a vice president who fills the gaps in Trump’s own profile, the Republican nominee just reinforces the perception that he does not care whether a majority of Americans trust his judgment."

Globe kind of approves of Vice President Pence, captive of AIPAC and didn't like Newt, huh?

As for judgement, polls are saying otherwise.

Throughout the day Thursday, word leaked that Pence was the pick. The governor flew on a private plane to New York and appeared ready to join the formal announcement. But Trump’s campaign adamantly denied any final decision had been made.

Trump himself called into Fox News and said he had yet to make a “final, final decision.” He also canceled the announcement after the attacks in France, even though he still called into television shows and held a planned fund-raiser in California.

The timing got even more tricky because Pence was facing a deadline in his home state. He had until Friday at noon to withdraw his name from the ballot in his bid for reelection as Indiana governor. Because Indiana law prevents candidates from running for both governor and vice president, he had to make a decision about how to proceed.

Looks like a hasty selection!

Trump made the announcement on Twitter, concluding a bizarre 24-hour period in which a nominee who prides himself on making quick, gut-level decisions appeared to hesitate on one of the most closely watched decisions of his campaign. Trump was so unsure of Pence as his selection that he asked aides around midnight whether he could still get out of it....

He still can, yes, the nominations have not been put forward yet. 


Everyman said the M$M would hammer him either way, and this gets the choice about right:

"You have a choice between being ripped apart by a cougar or hammered by a bear." 

Let's see....

"Mike Pence: A conservative proudly out of synch with his times" by Michael Barbaro and Monica Davey New York Times  July 16, 2016

Mike Pence eagerly held court in an empty chamber, musing about sports and Scripture, defiantly opposed to his own party.

Donald Trump’s running mate, has been deeply and proudly out of synch with his times.

He is a throwback.

He is abstemious with [a] homespun manner, [but] outsiders see him as a dangerous anachronism.

In interviews, Pence describes himself as “a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican, in that order.”

He's best known for the same-sex firestorm so Trump must be trying to mollify conswervatives?

For many Americans, it's a searing introduction to Pence. But for those who have closely tracked his career, it fit a longstanding pattern: The winds of change might blow, but Pence is slow to bend.

By the time he was elected to Congress in 2000, after two failed tries, Pence had missed the Republican revolution led by Newt Gingrich and his scrappy, fiscally conservative acolytes who stormed Washington in 1994. Nobody, it seemed, had told Pence that the rebellion was over. He arrived in the House determined to slash federal spending and shrink the role of government.

It was not to be: House Republicans, led by President George W. Bush, created giant new programs like Medicare Part D and spent trillions bailing out Wall Street after the financial crisis.

“I was like the frozen man, a minuteman who showed up 10 years too late,” Pence said in a 2004 speech.

He left little mark on the institution: During his 12-year congressional career, he introduced 90 bills and resolutions. None became law.

Showing up late, by many accounts, was his fate as governor, too. By the time he was elected, his popular predecessor, Governor Mitch Daniels, along with a Republican Legislature, had checked off almost every box on the conservative wish list.

His conservatism, friends said, is firmly rooted in his Indiana childhood, a postcard from a tranquil Midwest of the 1960s. The son of a gas station manager, he was a quiet altar boy whose favorite childhood memory was playing in a neighborhood creek.

Thank God!

In college, he gravitated from his family’s Catholicism to evangelical Christianity after a fraternity brother at Hanover College “challenged me to take seriously the claims of Christ,” Pence later recalled on the House floor.

His feel for the local mood and mores allowed him to master a form of communication that proved pivotal to his political rise: talk radio....

He's the Man of the Year -- and now he is gone(?).


Article makes Pence out to be kind of a crackpot, huh?

"In introducing Pence, Trump keeps the spotlight on himself" by Jenna Johnson Washington Post  July 16, 2016

NEW YORK — At a news conference to introduce his newly announced running mate, Donald Trump took the stage alone Saturday and then spent 28 minutes talking about all sorts of things with only brief mentions of Governor Mike Pence of Indiana.

Although Trump was unscripted for most of his remarks, he generally read from a script whenever referencing Pence despite media reports that the presumptive Republican nominee was uneasy with the selection.

He says the ‘‘reason I chose Mike is party unity, to be honest,’’ and I believe he is not catering, I mean pandering.

But most of Trump’s focus on Saturday morning was not on Pence. Trump reacted to the recent attack in France and the failed coup in Turkey, repeatedly attacked Clinton, his Democratic opponent, touted his primary victories, and called for religious leaders to be allowed to endorse presidential candidates. Sometimes he would transition back to the purpose of the news conference by saying things like: ‘‘Back to Mike Pence.’’

After 28 minutes, Trump called Pence onstage. In a six-second interaction, the men shook hands, and Trump patted Pence on his left shoulder. As Pence took his place behind a lectern, Trump used his right thumb to point at Pence, then applauded and left the stage.

There are your future working conditions, Mike.

Pence was scripted and prepared.

What "news" isn't these days?

With Pence, Trump gets a partner who can win the votes of conservatives who make up the party’s base without overly exciting them or casting even a trace of a shadow on Trump.

Pence praised Trump as ‘‘the people’s choice’’ who ‘‘understands the anxiety and the aspiration of the American people like no leader since Reagan.’’

He also jumped on board with Trump’s campaign promises, including a few that he had previously opposed, such as a temporary suspension of Muslim immigration from countries with terrorist influences, and construction of a wall on the Mexican border....



Finally found his footing:

"How Mike Pence found his footing" by Matt Viser Globe Staff  July 20, 2016

CLEVELAND — Mike Pence, the wholesome candidate who rode a bicycle around campaigning with his wife, [and like] one of his heroes, Ronald Reagan, used a radio show to springboard to political prominence.

For Pence, who will be nominated Wednesday as the Republican vice presidential candidate, the radio opportunity marked a crucial turning point. He would largely abandon his legal career for one in talk radio, honing his skills as a communicator, building his name recognition, and testing out his conservative political views.

But he would also develop an unlikely reputation, particularly for a man who has just agreed to become the running mate of one of the least civil presidential nominees in recent memory. While on air, he was known for his polite demeanor. He largely avoided conflict, and he had a common refrain: “We’ll just have to agree to disagree.”

He's gone from being crazy kook to rational radio host -- all in the space of a handful of days!

“That calming but yet authoritative voice was what made him popular,” said Greg Garrison, a longtime Pence friend who took over his radio show in 2000. “Mike can be pretty edgy. But he doesn’t have the Trump I’m-going-to-come-and-hold-your head-underwater side.”

Trump hasn't signed off on any torture -- yet!

Now, Pence is stepping into one of the most prominent roles in American politics. It’s a long way from the quiet radio station in Rushville, Ind., where the bathrooms were labeled as Olivia for the women and Elton for the men (because, Disinger explains, “they’re both Johns”).

Then his life story, grew up Irish Catholic, grew more religious and more conservative after marrying his wife and earning a law degree. No need to rehash it again.

Occasionally, callers would turn slightly hostile, and there was a button ready to press if someone used a profanity. But Pence himself usually bit his tongue. It was the early 1990s, and the political mood was not as antagonistic....

He must not read this blog then.

Soon, he worked his way to a bigger network, with thought of “The Mike Pence Show” as a daytime version of Larry King. Pence, though, said he wanted to be a Midwestern version of Rush Limbaugh, but “he didn’t have the edge that Rush has.”

When Pence takes the stage Wednesday night....

I think I'll stop there for the night and hit the road again early tomorrow.