Sunday, June 26, 2016

In new poll, support for Trump has plunged, giving Clinton a double-digit lead

Support for Donald Trump has plunged as he has alienated fellow Republicans and large majorities of voters overall in the course of a month of self-inflicted controversies, propelling Democrat Hillary Clinton to a double-digit lead nationally in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey finds sweeping unease with the presumptive Republican nominee’s candidacy — from his incendiary rhetoric and values to his handling of both terrorism and his own business — foreshadowing that the November election could be a referendum on Trump more than anything else.

Roughly two in three Americans say they think Trump is unqualified to lead the nation; are anxious about the idea of him as president; believe his comments about women, minorities and Muslims show an unfair bias; and see his attacks on a federal judge because of his Mexican American heritage as racist.


George Will Jumps From Sinking Ship That Is The GOP

Longtime conservative columnist George Will is wiping his hands clean of the Republican Party. 

This is not my party,” Will told PJ Media on Saturday. The Washington Post writer said a Democratic presidency would be better than the alternative offered by Donald Trump — who once called Will a “major loser.”

His voter registration in Maryland has now changed from Republican to “unaffiliated,” PJ Media reported. The final straw was House Speaker Paul Ryan‘s (R-Wis) endorsement of Trump, he said. 

In the meantime, Trump continues to fumble over himself. Just this week, he fired his campaign manager Corey Lewandowski before setting off to Scotland to promote his golf resorts. 

“He had one good day because he didn’t vomit all over himself and gave a decent speech,” GOP consultant Matt Mackowiak said of Trump.


Saturday, June 25, 2016

New Electoral Math Doesn't Add Up to President Trump

(NEWSER) – The electoral math hasn't changed much in the past three months, and that's bad news for Donald Trump's presidential aspirations. The University of Virginia Center for Politics released a map at the end of March that projected 347 electoral votes for Clinton and 191 for Trump. They released their updated map Thursday, and it shows ... 347 electoral votes for Clinton and 191 for Trump. “The state of the general election has not shifted much," the Center for Politics states. "Clinton remains a substantial favorite.” In fact, since receiving a bump after locking up the nomination, Trump has trailed Clinton in every national poll over the past four weeks, CBS News reports. In five major national polls released this week, Clinton leads by an average of more than six points. 

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Embattled GOP Senator Throws Trump Under The Bus In New Ad

Just over two weeks ago, Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) made news when he became the first of his Republican legislative colleagues to rescind a previously extended endorsement of presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump. Now, as Politico’s Kevin Robillard reports, he’s set to become another famous first in the Trump era: 

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Lawsuit Accuses Donald Trump Of Raping Teenage Girl In 1994

IA federal lawsuit filed Monday in New York accuses Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump of repeatedly raping a 13-year-old girl more than 20 years ago, at several Upper East Side parties hosted by convicted sex offender and notorious billionaire investor Jeffrey Epstein

The suit, first reported by the Real Deal, accuses Trump and Epstein of luring the anonymous plaintiff and other young women to four parties at Epstein's so-called Wexner Mansion at 9 East 71st Street. Epstein allegedly lured the plaintiff, identified in the suit only as Jane Doe, with promises of a modeling career and cash. 

Another anonymous woman, identified in additional testimony as Tiffany Doe, corroborates Jane's allegations, testifying that she met Epstein at Port Authority, where he hired her to recruit other young girls for his parties.

Link to story.

Ex-Bush adviser Scowcroft endorses Clinton

Brent Scowcroft, who served as national security adviser under Presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush, is endorsing Hillary Clinton for president.
Scowcroft said Clinton has the "wisdom and experience to lead our country at this critical time," mentioning her time as secretary of State, New York senator and first lady.

Donald Trump Keeps Calling The U.S. The ‘Highest Taxed Nation.’ It’s Not Even Close.

Donald Trump likes to say the United States is the “highest taxed nation in the world.”

He said it Wednesday while attacking Hillary Clinton. He said it in May. He said it February. He said it last August. But it is not true at all. 

When it comes to its tax rates, the U.S. ranks 17th, 19th or 31st among the world’s 33 developed nations depending on what metric you use, as Politifact has doggedly noted each time Trump has wheeled out this lie.


Politifact also looked at numbers from the World Bank, which “placed the United States near the bottom in tax revenue as a percentage of GDP.” Another report from the World Bank and PricewaterhouseCoopers includes things like property and business profits, and it determined the U.S. ranked 64th out of 189 countries in total tax rate. 

There’s just no way to slice the numbers to make Trump’s statement anything less than totally untrue. The simple fact is that the U.S. tax rate is near the middle or bottom compared to other countries.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Evangelical leader says Trump is ‘un-Christian,' endorses Clinton

A top Evangelical leader on Tuesday called Donald Trump “un-Christian” and endorsed Hillary Clinton for president.

Mr. Trump’s proposals are not just un-Christian — they’re un-American and at odds with the values our country holds dearest,” said Deborah Fikes, executive advisor to the World Evangelical Alliance, a global ministry organization that works with churches in 129 countries around the world.

Fikes went on to say she is “praying” for “Sister Hillary” to be elected.

“Hillary Clinton is the leader who people of faith are looking for and we are praying that Sister Hillary and not Mr. Trump will be elected in November,” Fikes said.

Fikes chimed in with her personal view on the presidential race following Trump’s meeting with Evangelical leaders on Tuesday, though she did not attend the gathering in New York. 

Fikes expressed concerns about Trump’s “religious and ethnic intolerance” toward Muslims.

“It troubles me deeply to see abuse of the vulnerable and intolerance toward religious minorities on the rise,” Fikes said.

“As someone who has fought hard to counter China’s recent persecution of Christian minorities, I worry that allowing religious and ethnic intolerance here in American will undermine our ability to have a prayer of fighting it around the world.

“When candidates like Mr. Trump start sounding eerily similar to some of the worst global offenders, it’s time for some serious soul searching,” she added.

By contrast, Fikes called Clinton a “trustworthy” politician who is “embraced by many Evangelical sister churches.”

The likely GOP presidential nominee attended a meeting Tuesday at the Marriott Marquis hotel in Times Square with some of the most influential Christian conservative leaders in the nation.

NY-22: Babinec Launches Petition Drive

Martin Babinec, the central New York businessman who is launching an independent bid for Congress in the 22nd district, announced Tuesday he had started a petition drive to create a new ballot line, the Upstate Jobs Party. 

The party line will bolster Babinec’s spot on the ballot in November. 

“If you care about jobs for our families, for our children, for our future we are asking you to come forward, volunteer and join our cause,” Babinec said in a statement. 

“The Upstate Jobs Party is about more than just my candidacy, it’s about creating a sustainable political alternative to a two party system dominated by crony capitalism and special interests that has over and over again failed to deliver jobs for our region. If we are successful in bringing volunteers and attention to this line I plan to support its expansion going forward.” 

The petitioning process for the line ends Aug. 2. Babinec is required to get at least 3,500 signatures from registered voters of any party or those not registered in the party. Those signing the petition must live in the district and have not signed another petition this election cycle. 

The central New York district is being vacated this year by Republican Rep. Richard Hanna.

No Time For Trump, Part Two: Nuclear Proliferation, ISIS And The Threat Of Nuclear Terrorism

Twelve days ago, Paul Ryan and the House Republicans introduced a report on national security harshly critical of President Obama. “America,” they warned, “faces the highest terror threat level since 9/11.”

Let’s take them at their word. And so, a question. Of all the threats we face, what fear most haunts our national security community?

It is not massacres like those in Orlando or San Bernardino, as monstrous as they are. It is a threat which, while more remote, would be infinitely more devastating: a nuclear attack — including by terrorists like ISIS and Al Qaeda.

This existential danger drives America’s efforts to curb the spread of nuclear weapons, and to keep our country safe from a nuclear holocaust. And here lies the irony in the Republicans’ warning. For it is yet another compelling reason that a man as ignorant, irresponsible, unstable and unprepared as Donald Trump should never become president.

Full post

Hillary Clinton: Trump’s Business Books ‘All Seem To End At Chapter 11’

WASHINGTON — Hillary Clinton took aim at Donald Trump’s business record on Tuesday, making a strong case that the presumptive GOP presidential nominee would manage the U.S. economy as badly as he has done his many failed business ventures.

“He’s written a lot of books about business, but they all seem to end at Chapter 11,” Clinton said in a clear dig at Trump’s four corporate bankruptcies. “Just like he should not have his finger on the button, he should not have his hands on our economy.”

The former secretary of state, who was speaking at a rally in Ohio, argued that Trump’s vague economic plans would drive the nation into a recession.

“Liberals and conservatives say Trump’s ideas would be a disaster,” she said. “[Former Republican presidential nominee] Mitt Romney and [Massachusetts Sen.] Elizabeth Warren, economists on the right and the left and center, all agree: Trump would throw us back into recession.”

Full post

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Oprah Winfrey backs Clinton: 'I’m with her’

Talk show host Oprah Winfrey is endorsing presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

“I’m with her,” she told Nancy O’Dell of "Entertainment Tonight" on Wednesday. "It’s a seminal moment for women. What this says is that there is no ceiling. That ceiling has gone ‘boom,’ you know?"


Bill Maher Calls Out Donald Trump’s Response To Orlando Shooting

Bill Maher took Donald Trump to task over his appalling response to the Orlando massacre on Friday.

The “Real Time with Bill Maher” host said the presumptive GOP nominee’s reaction to the shooting at Pulse nightclub exposed him for exactly what he is — selfish and narcissistic.

And Maher claimed it had done Trump’s presidential campaign a whole lot of damage, because people were finally seeing the businessman’s true side.

“I see it as, this was the week it ended,” said Maher. “I don’t think I’m the only one, because most of the Republicans who were caught on camera this week basically said, ‘I don’t want to talk about it.’”

“The judge thing looked selfish. There is no constituency for Trump University except for Donald Trump,” Maher told the audience, in reference to the former reality TV personality’s racist slurs against Judge Gonzalo Curiel.

“And then the first thing out of his mouth after Orlando was, ‘I was right.’ He looks like what he is — a narcissist,” Maher added.

Watch Friday night’s full clip above.

Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.

Also on HuffPost


Apple won't aid GOP convention over Trump

Apple has told Republican leaders it will not provide funding or other support for the party’s 2016 presidential convention, as it's done in the past, citing Donald Trump’s controversial comments about women, immigrants and minorities.

Unlike Facebook, Google and Microsoft, which have all said they will provide some support to the GOP event in Cleveland next month, Apple decided against donating technology or cash to the effort, according to two sources familiar with the iPhone maker’s plans.

Read more: 

Poll: Colleen Deacon opens big lead in Democratic primary for Congress

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Democratic congressional candidate Colleen Deacon leads her two rivals by a comfortable margin heading into the June 28 primary for the Syracuse region's congressional seat, according to a poll of likely voters.

Deacon has the support of 50 percent of likely voters, compared to 17 percent for Syracuse lawyer Steve Williams and 8 percent for Syracuse University professor Eric Kingson, the poll showed.

The poll of 485 likely voters in the 24th Congressional District was conducted by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in Washington, which has endorsed Deacon in the primary.

The primary winner will take on U.S. Rep. John Katko, R-Camillus, in the November election. Katko will appear on the Republican, Conservative and Independence Party lines.

The poll, conducted with a combination of live operators and automated survey, has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.3 percentage points, the DCCC said. Respondents were called June 14 and June 15.

Deacon led among all key voting blocs, according to the pollster, with wide margins among voters in Onondaga County, among woman and among those over age 65.

Deacon, 39, of Syracuse, also had the strongest name recognition among the three candidates, with 62 percent saying they are familiar with the former Central New York district director for U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.

Gillibrand, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., and Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner have endorsed and campaigned for Deacon, likely adding to her name recognition among voters.

Deacon also was the first of the three candidates to invest heavily in a TV advertising campaign. She began airing ads May 17 in a campaign that will continue through Election Day.

Full story

Friday, June 17, 2016

Donald Trump’s Response To The Orlando Shooting Was Downright Horrific

WASHINGTON — After the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, Donald Trump took his terrifying campaign to a new level this week.

In the wake of tragedies like the one that happened in Orlando, Florida, this past Sunday, Americans usually put politics aside and come together to show strength and unity. Trump did exactly the opposite this week, using the massacre as an opportunity to boast about his powers of foresight, blame President Barack Obama and demonize American Muslims. His actions offer a hint of how he might respond to a similar situation as president.

Amid reports that a gunman had killed 49 people at a gay nightclub early Sunday, Trump could only respond by bragging that he’d predicted such a thing would happen, and arguing that the attack justified his proposed ban on Muslims entering the U.S.

Trump followed the tweet with a speech on Monday in which he called for suspending immigrationfrom areas of the world where there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe or allies.” Trump also falsely claimed that Omar Mateen, the shooter in the Orlando attack, was born in Afghanistan. In fact, Mateen was born in New York, not far from Trump himself.

Full story

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Trump Is So Toxic That Even Members Of His Own Party Would Rather Vote Hillary

A top official in the George W. Bush administration has become the most prominent Republican to endorse Hillary Clinton for president.

Richard Armitage, who was Bush’s deputy secretary of state during his first presidential term, told Politico in an article published Thursday that Trump “doesn’t appear to be a Republican, he doesn’t appear to want to learn about issues. So I’m going to vote for Mrs. Clinton.”

Armitage, who also served under President Ronald Reagan, isn’t the first Republican to throw his support behind Clinton. 

Arne Carlson, the Republican former governor of Minnesota, told CityPages on Wednesday that “no human being in history has been more vetted” than Clinton while Trump “has taken campaigning to a new low.”


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Poll: GOP favorability falls to record low

Less than one-third of Americans view the Republican Party favorably — the GOP’s lowest rating in the nearly-seven-year history of Bloomberg Politics' national poll
Just 32 percent see the GOP favorably, while 49 percent see the Democratic Party favorably, according to the poll released Wednesday. 

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan Says He Doesn’t Plan On Voting For Donald Trump

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) distanced himself from real estate mogul Donald Trump on Wednesday, telling reporters he probably won’t be voting for his party’s presumptive nominee in November.

Hogan, who hails from a predominantly blue state, endorsed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) in the GOP primary. He is the third GOP governor to say he won’t be voting for Trump, joining Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker. View a list of #NeverTrump Republicans here.

Trump trounced rivals Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich in the Maryland GOP primary in April. He won 54 percent of the vote, Kasich got 23 percent, and Cruz got 19 percent.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Mormon Voters Really Don’t Like Donald Trump — Here’s Why

Speaking before one of his smallest crowds this campaign season, Donald Trump declared Friday night at a rally in Salt Lake City that he loves the Mormons.

The feeling does not appear to be mutual.

Trump suffered one of his most decisive defeats of the year Tuesday in the Mormon mecca of Utah, where Republican caucusgoers voted overwhelmingly against him. Ted Cruz received 69% of the vote in the state, followed by John Kasich at just under 17%, and Trump in last place, at 14%.

The drubbing shouldn't come as a surprise. So far in 2016, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have proven to be one of the most stubbornly anti-Trump constituencies in the Republican Party.

National polling data focused on Mormon voters is hard to come by, but the election results speak for themselves. Even as Trump has steamrollered his way through the GOP primaries, he has repeatedly been trounced in places with large LDS populations.

In Wyoming, the third-most-heavily Mormon state in the country, Trump was able to muster just 70 votes in the low-turnout Republican caucuses there — losing to Ted Cruz by a whopping 59 points.

In Idaho, the country's second most Mormon state, Trump lost the primary by 18 points.

The pattern holds at the county level as well. As New York Times data journalist Nate Cohn illustrated, the larger the proportion of Mormons in a given county, the worse Trump has generally performed in the primary contest there.

This dynamic was perhaps most vividly demonstrated earlier this month in the deeply conservative Madison County — home to Brigham Young University–Idaho and a population that's estimated to be upward of 95% Mormon. Cruz won the county with 57% of the vote; Rubio came in second with 27%. Trump won a total of 539 votes — less than 8% of the county electorate, and just barely enough to squeak by fourth-place Kasich.

Some are pointing to Mitt Romney, who has spent recent weeks on a high-profile crusade to stop the billionaire, to explain this phenomenon. But LDS voters' skepticism of the billionaire — which, polls suggest, predates Romney's emergence as an anti-Trump champion — is rooted more deeply in Mormon culture and politics.

That's because while Mormons make up the most reliably Republican religious group in the country, they differ from the party's base in key ways that work against Trump.

On immigration, for example, the hard-line proposals that have rallied Trump's fans — like building a massive wall along the country's southern border to keep immigrants out — are considerably less likely to fire up conservative Latter-day Saints. The LDS church has spent years lobbying for "compassionate" immigration reform. In 2011, church leaders offered a full-throated endorsement of "the Utah Compact," a state legislative initiative that discouraged deporting otherwise law-abiding undocumented immigrants and offered a path to residency for families that would be separated by deportation.

Full story

Here's How Trump (Allegedly) Stiffed an 82-Year-Old Immigrant Over an Unpaid Bill

Donald Trump likes to boast he's a great businessman. But one part of his reputation as a wheeler and dealer is not so grand: He can be stingy when it comes to paying his bills. Of course, there are his bankruptcies, and he has bragged about forcing bankers to take haircuts on the money he owes them. USA Today this week reported that it "found hundreds of people—carpenters, dishwashers, painters, even his own lawyers—who say he didn't pay them for their work." And some years ago, an 82-year-old Latvian immigrant named Nicolas Jacobsen learned the hard way about Trump's penchant to squeeze folks when it's time to settle up.

The saga began in 2004, when Trump was sprucing up his private Palm Beach resort, Mar-a-Lago, ahead of his January 22, 2005, wedding to his third wife-to-be, Melania. His upgrades included the purchase of three crystal chandeliers from Jacobsen's West Palm Beach business, Classic Chandeliers, which specialized in expensive replicas of chandeliers that hung in Versailles or Napoleon Bonaparte's palace.

The price tag for the chandeliers was more than $68,000, but Jacobsen offered to sell them to Trump for $34,000. Jacobsen claimed Trump did not want to pay the sales taxes on the sale but eventually relented; Trump ultimately paid nearly $17,000 as a deposit. Jacobsen installed the chandeliers in the entryway and two bathrooms in the resort's new 20,000-square-foot ballroom, which Trump had built in advance of his star-studded wedding, where many of the wedding vendors reportedly provided their services gratis, hoping for a boost from the extra publicity. (The New York Times even reported that Trump got Melania's 13-carat diamond ring for half-price.)

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Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ attack leaves fellow Republicans squirming (again)

It was a bad time for Sen. Cory Gardner to be caught in an elevator with a reporter. Donald Trump had just referred to Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts as “Pocahontas” — again — and the Republican freshman from Colorado was struggling to figure out how to respond.

“I think people need to be treated with respect, and that’s what we’ve demanded from everyone,” he offered.

But was it racist?

Gardner clammed up. He politely referred further questions to his press secretary.

So it went for Republicans on Capitol Hill on Friday, forced to contend with yet another provocative comment by their presumptive presidential nominee — clambering for safety as Trump launched another boundary-pushing attack.

Trump Calls Sen. Warren 'Pocahontas'

Play Video1:53
Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump took aim at Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) at a rally in Richmond, Va., on June 10. He called Warren "Pocahontas," a jab at her claim that she is of Native American descent. (AP)

“Get used to it,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres, a Trump critic. “This is your life for the next five months.”

The furor over Trump’s assaults on the impartiality of a Latino judge had just begun to subside when he lobbed two tweets Friday morning responding to Warren, who had lambasted him as a “thin-skinned, racist bully” in a speech the previous evening.

Full story