Category Archives: Republican Messaging

Playing the Clinton vs. Trump debate expectations game

Donald Trump debates Donald Trump

Donald Trump debates Donald Trump

We’re in the post-convention phase of the 2016 elections, where the next big events planned are the presidential debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Assuming that Trump agrees to have the debates, many Democrats assume that Clinton is going to wipe the floor with Trump, and that he is simply going to embarrass himself. Such an assumption is a mistake. Instead, it’s important to recognize, and play, the debate expectations game.

The Republican Party is dead. What comes next?

Republican Party bends to Donald Trump

Republican Party bends to Donald Trump

This week may well be viewed as the week in which the Republican Party died. After Party primary voters chose Donald Trump as their presidential nominee in May, Trump this week chose Steve Bannon, the chairman of right wing website Breitbart News, as his campaign manager, effectively shunting aside Paul Manafort, an experienced GOP strategist and lobbyist. Today, Manafort resigned from the Trump campaign. While Manafort was facing a Russian influence scandal, had become a lightning rod for negative publicity and thus had to go, he was at least a mainstream Republican who deals in reality. Trump’s choice of Bannon as a replacement for Manafort pushes Trump’s presidential campaign, and thus the Republican Party, further into fake conspiracy theory territory.

Republicans abandon Donald Trump

Satirical anti-Donald Trump poster in New York CIty

Satirical anti-Donald Trump poster in New York City

The general election phase of a presidential campaign is when a party nominee, having garnered the majority of the party’s primary voter base, tries to expand that base to include “swing voters,” and even moderates from the other party. This year, however, Donald Trump, the Republican Party presidential nominee, is hemorrhaging Republicans while simultaneously failing to grow his base. As a result, the Republicans are in panic mode, with no end to the bleeding in sight.

Will Donald Trump drop out of the presidential race?

Donald Trump speaking in Cedar Rapids, IA on July 28, 2016

Donald Trump speaking in Cedar Rapids, IA on July 28, 2016

After Donald Trump‘s disastrous last couple of weeks, not just the polls but events seem to be moving quickly against him. First, it was reported that key Republicans close to Trump, such as Newt Gingrich and Rudolf Giuliani, along with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, were going to stage an “intervention” with Trump. Now, however, some Republicans, such as Gingrich and Giuliani, are saying there is no intervention. If not, it may be because Republicans are moving on to the next step. What was almost unthinkable just days ago is now the subject of open speculation: will Republicans try to force Donald Trump out of the presidential race and replace him with someone more palatable?  Is that possible? If so, how it would work? Or will Trump get fed up and just quit?

Trump’s treasonous troubles

Donald Trump on the campaign trail in March of this year.

Donald Trump on the campaign trail in March of this year.

Donald Trump is not having a good week. Trump managed to cast himself as both unpatriotic and treasonous within the space of a few days. First, Trump invited Russia to commit cyber espionage against the U.S. in order to influence the upcoming presidential election in Trump’s favor, which many have called possibly treasonous or at least a violation of the Logan Act. Then Trump attacked the Gold Star family of Captain Humayun Khan, a U.S. soldier of Muslim faith who was killed in Iraq in 2004 while protecting his troops. Not surprisingly, Hillary Clinton‘s lead against Donald Trump is now growing.

Democrats take patriotism back from the Republicans

Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama at the 2016 Democratic National Convention

Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama at the 2016 Democratic National Convention

Beginning in 1980 and throughout his presidency, Ronald Reagan appropriated the idea of patriotism and America and planted it firmly with the Republican Party. This week, however, at their national convention and with a big boost from Donald Trump, the Democratic Party and their presidential nominee Hillary Clinton took patriotism back.

Welcome to the Trump Republican National Convention train wreck

Ill-fated Trump/Pence "TP" logo.

Ill-fated Trump/Pence “TP” logo.

On Monday, several of Donald Trump‘s campaign staffers were involved in a minor car accident in New York City. That was nothing compared to the train wreck that is the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Cleveland, Ohio, and the events of the previous days. Here are some of the many things that have gone wrong for the Trump campaign and the Republican Party in just the past week:

Hillary Clinton snoozes to victory

Hillary Clinton campaign truck.

Hillary Clinton campaign truck.

The above headline is exactly what the mainstream media have been trying to avoid for a year and a half. If you’ve ever watched a one-sided sports event, you’ll know the reason why: viewers will tune out, and that’s bad for business. So what we all need to remember is that the mainstream media’s goal during this entire election season is to create more drama, which leads to higher ratings, and money for themselves. This business incentive can be seen in the coverage of Hillary Clinton‘s use of a private email server as Secretary of State, which the FBI just cleared as not a criminal offense.

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders take a beating at Politicon 2016

Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson delivers keynote address at Politicon 2016.

Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson delivers keynote address at Politicon 2016.

The second Politicon began yesterday in Pasadena, California and continues today. Politicon is billed as “an unconventional political convention” which brings together the most diverse array of political and entertainment figures this side of the White House Correspondents Dinner, including comedians Larry Wilmore and Lizz Winstead; U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer of California; political consultants James Carville and Paul Begala; conservative media figures Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck; Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson; former Mexican President Vicente Fox and many more. Perhaps the mere fact that this diverse group was featured at Politicon makes them all “establishment” in a way. If so, that might explain why, at yesterday’s event, criticism of presidential candidates Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders was widespread.

Three reasons to vote against Donald Trump

Donald Trump speaking in Manchester, NH last February

Donald Trump speaking in Manchester, NH last February

After Donald Trump‘s big win and Hillary Clinton‘s near tie in the Indiana primaries last Tuesday, given the resulting delegate math, attention immediately turned to the likely upcoming general election between Trump and Clinton. While the criticisms that can be leveled against Trump are many, voters might become distracted if too many such charges come flying across the airwaves. In order to keep it simple, we have identified three areas in which Trump is most vulnerable to criticism and political attack in the general election: