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Friday, April 17, 2015

Watching The Campaigns Crumble

The 2016 presidential campaign is just starting, but we are already seeing some of the campaigns for individual candidates stumble and even crumble.  Just look at the last week:

1.  Hillary declared her candidacy by video and avoided answering question.  Then she drove to Iowa to look "authentic".  Once in Iowa she had two events speaking with people planted by her campaign and told in advance what to say.  She also had a press availability at which she refused to take questions.  In short, she was about as authentic as a seven dollar bill.  Her campaign looks like the staggering motion of a sclerotic nonagenarian just before she says, "help, I've fallen and I can't get up."  To be sure, this past week Hillary has emphasized just how out of touch she is.

2.  Jeb Bush just told a gathering in New Hampshire that Loretta Lynch ought to be confirmed by the Senate.  Think about that one.  Right now, about 90% of Senate Republicans are opposing the Lynch nomination.  Bush can support her; that's his right.  It is another thing, however, for Bush to go public at the moment to push for her confirmation.  The Lynch nomination is in line for consideration right after the vote on the bill to combat human trafficking.  Democrats are holding that human trafficking bill up with a filibuster because they are trying to score points with the most strident abortion supporters in their base.  Supposedly, the Democrats don't want to extend the Hyde Amendment coverage to expenditures that are funded by fees rather than tax revenues.  That's a bit silly even for the Democrats, but it is their state position.  The Republicans offered to take the funding for the bill out of the fee based revenues and instead take the funding from regular tax revenues where the Hyde amendment language has been in place for almost 40 years.  This compromise would give the Democrats everything that they asked for.  They refuse, however, to take yes for an answer.  Instead, president Obama is out there again today castigating the Republicans for holding up Lynch's nomination.  Al Sharpton is fasting (probably between meals) in support of her nomination.  Dick Durbin accuses the Republicans of racism because Lynch is black.  And into this maelstrom, Jeb Bush decides to push for Lynch's confirmation.  Unbelievable.  With moves like that one, Jeb will never get the support of most Republicans. 

3.  Chris Christie shot himself in the foot by supporting a change of Social Security from a retirement plan to a welfare program.  Nothing says "vote for me" to the average Republican primary voter like a push towards still more socialism.  Okay, I'm being sarcastic.  Christie ended whatever little chance he had to gain the nomination with this idiotic move.  (Still, I have to thank Christie for this.  His dumb move let me achieve one of the items left on my bucket list; I used the word "little" in the same sentence as Chris Christie.)

There is a long, long time to go until even the first primary.  Still, these candidates are not doing well.  They are reinforcing all the stereotypes that they are trying to avoid.  Hillary is a phony, out of touch oldster.  Jeb Bush is, at best, an old style country club Republican who lives in the past.  Chris Christie is an opportunist who cares less for principles and more for his own future.   Another few weeks like the last one, and some of these candidates will never recover.  (To be fair, Christie is already too far gone to recover.)


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