Why Does The Media Report Lies As If It’s News?

              Remember when Ronald Reagan did TV commercials for General Electric? If you’re not my age, and I’m 76 years old, you probably don’t remember those commercials that Reagan made for GE beginning in 1954, but every commercial ended with Reagan smiling and telling the viewers that “progress was the most important product” for GE.

              And how could you argue with that idea? After all, the 1950’s was the first time that a majority of Americans owned their own homes, their own cars, their own TV sets, and their own washers and dryers.  That’s not progress? 

              The only problem was that once GE developed an enormous consumer market for electric appliances, everyone else jumped in, and a company that had owned this market in the 1950’s, found that by the 1980’s, all they owned was a lot of debt.

              Enter Jack Welch.  He was CEO of GE from 1981 and 2001, and during this period the company’s stock went from $1.50 a share to almost $60 bucks.  Welch built a new company by moving GE out of home appliances and into credit, leasing, and other financial pursuits. He also began to buy other companies so that GE’s bottom line no longer depended on washing and drying machines.

              Right now the company’s stock is sitting at $6.22 and investors are waiting to hear any day now that Chapter 7 has been filed in some federal bankruptcy court. What was the veritable straw that broke the veritable camel’s back? The company’s decision to get into natural gas production and distribution right when the natural gas market began to contract.

              And why has the natural gas industry fallen on hard times? Because of the falling cost of – ready – renewable energy, as in all those wind turbines and solar panels which increasingly dot the landscape all over the place.

              Know what industry has suffered even more from renewables than natural gas?  Try coal, which is shortly on its way to being completely put to bed. Coal first started being mined and used in large quantities beginning in 1885. By 1918 annual production was 500 million tons, went up and down over the next 80 years and by 2008 hit more than one billion tons each year. Know what the production was in 2016? Try 728 million tons, which is back down to where it was in the early 1980’s.

              In other words, coal is basically finished as a primary energy source, and its use will continue to decline as renewable energy and green energy distribution continues to expand. And anyone who tries to deny this slow but sure shift away from coal is either lying, or dumb, or both.

              Want the name of an individual who is making a pro-coal argument that is a complete lie? Try the 45th President of the United States who will say anything to drag a few more votes into his column to win a second term. Wyoming, West Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois, and Pennsylvania account for 70% of all U.S. coal.  Montana, Texas, Indiana, North Dakota, Colorado, Ohio, New Mexico, Utah, Alabama, and Virginia account for just about all the rest.

              Note that of those 15 states where coal mining and production still means jobs, nine of those states are reliably red states, but three other states – Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Texas – are states which Trump better win or he’ll be out on his fat ass come January 2021.

              So what is Trump doing? He goes around to these coal-rich states, presents himself as a great ‘friend’ of coal miners and simply lies about everything he’s doing to help them keep their jobs. The truth is, he’s not doing anything to revive the coal industry because it can’t be revived. It’s dead and dying, okay? Gone. Or fartig (finished) as my grandfather would say.

              But this reality doesn’t stop Trump from going around and using a completely fake narrative to take swipes at the Green New Deal and/or the Communist Left and/or the ‘Democrat’ Party – it’s all one and the same.

              The liberal media, from The (failing) New York Times on down, should be ashamed of themselves for giving this guy any space at all.

Can Trump Still Win? Difficult, Not Impossible.

              Yesterday I updated the poll numbers and they showed what they have been showing for the past several months, namely, that Joe appears to be on his way towards winning the 2020 campaign. But I would be presenting an overly optimistic view of the campaign if I didn’t also explain why Trump’s path to victory remains fairly clear and certainly can be done.  Here’s how and why.

              There are 23 states that have voted red in every Presidential election since 2000. Together, these states are worth 191 electoral votes (EV). Trump is comfortably ahead in 21 of these states, the exceptions being Georgia and Texas, together worth 54 EV’s. Right now Trump has less than a one-point lead in both those states, so if he doesn’t end up in the W column in both places, he can’t grab the brass ring. But for the moment, let’s assume that he keeps Texas and Georgia red. What else does he have to do?

              What else he has to do is win in a combination of the following states which would add up to 79 EV’s: IA, FL, MI, NV, NC, NM, OH, WI and PA. These are the states that have not always been either red or blue since 2000, and right now Trump is ahead in two of them – Iowa and Ohio – by less than 2 points in each. If he wins these two states along with Georgia and Texas, his EV number goes to 215, which leaves him 55 EV’s short of where he needs to be.

              As of this morning, Trump’s behind in Florida and North Carolina by a total of 3.2 points – two points in Florida, 1.2 in NC. If he pulls ahead in those two states by the end of the campaign, he gets another 44 EV’s. In other words, if Trump wins Iowa, Ohio, Florida and North Carolina, all states where he and Joe are effectively tied, he still needs to win at least one of the following states – Michigan, Arizona, Pennsylvania – in order to claim the big prize. If he wins Wisconsin, he still needs to add another state.

              Right now, Trump is behind by 4.5 points in Arizona, and taken together, the most recent polls find him behind by 7 points. In Michigan, Joe is ahead by 7.5 points, and the polls added yesterday have him up by 10 points. The only one of these states that’s really close is PA, where Joe leads by 4.5 points but the most recent polls show the gap to be less. But even if Trump wins Pennsylvania, he still needs at least two more states.

              What did Al Neri say in Godfather II when Michael Corleone asked him if they could rub out Hyman Roth when the old gangster returned to the United States? Difficult, not impossible. I can’t think of a better way to describe the current state of the Trump campaign.

              If you’re going to mess around with poll numbers, however, there’s one thing you need to understand. Because it’s assumed that every pollster is polling a different group of respondents, the percentage of voters put up for both candidates on any given day is actually an average of what the polls for that state have reported over the previous week. So whatever number I am using to calculate each candidate’s EV’s, it may not be a number which accurately represents the real feelings amongst the electorate on any given day.

              The good news for Joe’s campaign right now is that the Sedaris dog-shit number, both nationally and in most states, is down to 7 points or less, which means that neither candidate can count on a sudden, last-minute flood of votes. It’s also the case that in every competitive state the Libertarian vote is around 2 percent, which means there’s no conservative wiggle-room for Trump in 2020 the way there was in 2016 when Libertarians were 7% of the voters polled before the actual vote.

              In sum, right now I’d rather be Joe than Trump. But ‘difficult, not impossible,’ should remain what we all force ourselves to think every day.

Where Do We Stand With 6 Weeks To Go?

              All of a sudden, there’s only 6 weeks left before the big deal. And while the Supreme Court issue provides a bit of a diversion, I’m also convinced that everyone’s sick and tired of the campaign.  Unfortunately, the latest polls show that the campaign is just getting serious, and that whatever happens between now and November 3rd, the brass ring is still up for grabs.

              Here’s the good news. The national aggregate poll from Nate has Biden at 50.4%, Trump at 43.6%. On September 18, Joe was down to 50.1%, the uptick over the last several days is a good sign. The better news is that the Sedaris dog-shit number is now 6%, the smallest amount of dog-shit recorded since the campaign began. If every, single piece of dog-shit voted for Trump, the Biden-Harris ticket would still win the national, popular vote.

              That’s the good news. Now here’s the not-so-good news.  Overall, Joe continues to run ahead of Trump in the average of all 12 swing states – 47.87% to 45.11%. But on September 1st, he led overall 47.93% to 45.13%. So Trump has lost 2/10ths of a percent, but Joe has lost 6/10ths of a percent in the overall percentage of the 12 swing states.

              Here’s how it looked on September 1st:

              Now you may want to think that I’m just trying to get everyone hot and bothered so that they’ll continue to read my daily posts. But remember this: We have been living through a God-awful pandemic which has now killed more than 200,000 Americans because Trump flipped 3 states by a total of 7/10ths of one(!) percent in the votes cast in those three states.

              There’s a reason why Trump is doing two public rallies today in Ohio, okay? Now these events don’t draw anywhere near the number of people who came out to see him in 2016. And his campaign is indulging in a bit of wishful thinking by calling itself the ‘Great American Comeback’ campaign. With the exception of Wisconsin, where Trump is right now far behind, every other swing state has a mortality rate from the virus which ranks it in the top half of all 50 states.

              But things can always change in the last 6 weeks of any Presidential race. Trump could figure out a way to take credit for a vaccine that might actually start being injected into human beings at the local pharmacy before November 3rd. Or maybe he’ll dig up yet another phony scandal involving Joe or his son. Or maybe the North Koreans will suddenly send a battalion across the demilitarized zone. Who the hell knows?

              Truthfully, I don’t think there’s much, if any chance that any of those events will come to pass. What worries me is one thing and one thing only, namely, that the dog-shit vote appears to be slightly higher in the swing states than in the country as a whole. And worse, it has grown slightly larger from two weeks ago.

While I can’t imagine how any living adult, other than someone who is unconscious and hooked up to a life-support machine could still be undecided about how they are going to vote, I just hope that Joe and Kammie can figure out a way to get some of those swing states back over 50%.

Should We Abolish The Electoral College?

              Ever since the world was startled and shocked by how Trump won the 2016 Presidential election but lost the popular vote, I have been hearing kvetch after kvetch from the anti-Trump, liberal combine (it’s one and the same thing) about how and why the Electoral College has to go. Incidentally, I didn’t hear a single complaint about the Electoral College in 1992 when, thanks to Ross Perot, Bill Clinton received the winner’s share of Electoral College votes even though his 43% of the popular vote was below the 46% received by Trump in 2016.

              Anyway, we now have an ‘official’ argument for abolishing the Electoral College in a book written by a member of The (failing) New York Times editorial board, Jesse Wegman, whose book, Let The People Pick The President, is reviewed right here. And basically the book argues for direct voting for President through something that Wegman calls the ‘National Popular Vote Compact.’ which would require all the states to give their electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote.

              If Joe and Kammie win the election, I suspect the interest in reforming or changing the Electoral College will die down. If somehow, Trump is able to pull off a second term by convincing the rednecks in a couple of swing states that he’s still their man, you can be sure that every person on the Biden-Harris email list will start receiving fundraising requests to support some kind of scheme to replace the Electoral College with a popular vote.

              If that were actually to happen, the way things stand right now, it would probably bring about the demise of the Democratic Party and/or make it virtually impossible for the blue team to ever capture the White House again. And here’s the reason why.

              Going into the 2020 election, there are 24 states which are reliably red. How do I define a ‘red’ state as being reliable? Any state which delivered a majority of votes to the GOP ticket in every Presidential election since 2000. I picked 2000 because the Reagan elections in 1992 and 1996 were such landslides that the results were simply too unusual to be considered typical of what happens when Americans go to the polls every four years. Frankly, when he recovered from getting shot, Reagan could have been elected President for life.

              Since 2000, there are also 19 states that are reliably blue although two of those states – Colorado and Virginia, did have several results that would put them in the red bucket, but as of today these states are as blue as any to states can be.

              Criticisms that the Electoral College favors the smaller, rural states may sound convincing, but it happens not to be true.  Together, the 24 red states contain 111,372,848 residents, the blue states count 136,329,440 (2019 Census estimates.) Which means that going into a national election, the blue team starts off with a reliable 222 electoral votes, the red team has 191. This leaves 125 electoral votes controlled by 9 ‘unreliable’ states – Iowa, Florida, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Wisconsin, New Mexico, and PA.

              For the Democrats to win the White House, they need to win any combination of ‘unreliable’ states that will yield them 48 electoral votes. So, if they win, let’s say, Iowa, Florida, and Michigan they win. If they take Ohio, Wisconsin, and PA they win. In other words, because the blue team goes into every national election needing only 48 electoral votes, the road to victory is much easier than for the red team because the red team needs to corral 79 of those ‘unreliable’ electoral votes.

              What needs to be understood is not whether we should ‘reform’ or ‘revise’ or even get rid of the Electoral College. What needs to be understood is how the 2016 Clinton campaign could spend twice as much money as the Trump campaign spent in 2016 and somehow let states like Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania vote red by less than 1/100th  of the total votes cast in those three states.  If we do in 2020 whatever we did to let that happen in 2016, Trump deserves another four years, like it or not.

Is Trump Lying About How Much He’s Worth?

              One of the ideas which floats around the anti-Trump world is the idea (or the hope) that if Trump is booted out of the White House on January 20, 2021, that he’ll be indicted, convicted and wind up in jail. The latest missive in this regard is a piece in New York Magazine which, generally speaking, has been running some pretty good reportage about Trump. But that’s not surprising given that they have been dealing with him now for more than 30 years and the magazine was never part of the pro-Trump media gang.

              Be that as it may, the current story about what could happen to Trump if he becomes just another private citizen has some punch behind it but also more than one miss. What an indictment might look like has to do with Trump’s endless efforts to convince the world that he’s the richest guy around. And since in his book, wealth equals achievement, if he’s the richest guy, then he’s also an over-achiever, which is what he has been saying about himself both before and during his Presidential run.

              Going on Twitter or standing in front of a campaign rally and lying about how much you’re worth isn’t a crime. It may be infantile, it may be obnoxious, it may be self-aggrandizing bullshit, but you can’t get indicted just for saying something which happens not to be true.

              On the other hand, if you lie about how much money you have when you’re trying to convince a bank to give you a loan, that’s a crime. It’s called fraud. If you then try to back up your false claims by submitting a tax return based on business records that you ‘cooked’ so that you are hiding your true worth, that’s also a crime.  It’s called fraud.

              I don’t think Trump has been trying to keep Cy Vance, the Manhattan DA, from getting his hands on his tax returns because he’s worried about being charged with fraud. I think he wants the returns to remain closed because an honest review of the data would show that Trump isn’t worth anywhere what he says he’s worth. At which point, the image he has created to sell himself to the voters would quickly come tumbling down.

              I can tell you from personal experience that Trump makes statements about his ‘billions’ of dollars which are no different from the guy who tells you that he just caught a 12-foot sea bass when the longest such creature ever seen had a length of about 9 feet. In my case, I am referring to the impossibly out-of-this world valuations that Trump puts on his golf courses, most of which were rundown courses that he bought on the cheap, spruced up, added a spiffy clubhouse and a decent restaurant and now you’re playing the Old Course at St. Andrews.

              Except you’re not. Not only are you playing on a course which went broke because the previous owners couldn’t make it work, but you often might find that you are the only one playing the course. I drove over the Whitestone Bridge last year which gives you a very clear view of Trump’s Ferry Point golf course. On all 18 holes in the middle of a sunny day I counted a grand total of 4 golf carts and not a single golfer playing without a cart.

              The golf industry generally values golf courses at one to two times annual revenue at best. Trump values these properties at somewhere around $600 million; given the total revenues from these courses, a more realistic figure would be somewhere around $200 million at best.

              Now again, what Trump says about himself to others, even if the ‘others’ are a large, raucous campaign crowd, there’s no law under which he could be prosecuted or even charged. The truth is, I would like it even more if Trump is rejected by the voters for reasons having nothing to do with his braggadocio about his net worth.

              It’s not his lying that needs to be corrected on November 4th. It’s his presence, no matter what he says.

IN MEMORIAM AND WITH GREAT SADNESS- RUTH BADER GINSBURG

Should We Blame Trump For Covid-19?

              The two comments that have received the overwhelming attention in Bob Woodward’s new book, Rage, are statements that Trump made to Woodward on February 7 of this year when he said the virus was very ‘deadly,’ and then in March when he admitted to Woodward that he deliberately ‘played down’ the viral threat. 

              You can read descriptions of both of these exchanges between Trump and Woodward in the first 6 pages of the book. I’m willing to take short odds that 99% of the noisemakers on both sides of the political aisle have read those pages and nothing more.

              Now if you take the trouble to read all 392 pages of Woodward’s text, here’s how it ends: “When his performance as president is taken in tis entirety, I can only reach one conclusion: Trump is the wrong man for the job.”

              I happen to disagree with Woodward for two reasons: First, the book’s narrative doesn’t support what he says. Second, nowhere in the book do we get any kind of definition of what the president’s job is supposed to be. And even if we did, who says how Woodward defines the Presidency is a definition that would be shared by anyone else?

              I am going to review this book as well as the book written by Michael Cohen.  Please note: I have been a political junkie for 60 years (since as a high-school sophomore in 1960, I was in the crowd at JFK’s New York campaign rally in Herald Square), I have read probably every book, news magazine article and credible political blog about presidential politics that has been published to date, and I am a proud, yellow-dog Democrat except that I believe that LBJ’s decision to widen the war in Southeast Asia was the worst decision any President has ever made.

              That being said, I don’t agree with Bob Woodward’s evaluation of Trump, and I don’t believe the media has been fair to him or has really understood the political style and behavior that he represents.

              No other President in my lifetime has ever given any journalist the degree of open and unfettered access that Trump gave to Woodward prior to the publication of this book. In fact, no other President has been as unblocked and unfiltered as Trump, even with journalists and opinion-makers representing media venues who are openly critical of just about everything Trump does.

              This doesn’t mean that Trump has done a good or even passable job. He hasn’t, as far as I’m concerned. But to disparage his communication style and content by comparing him to FDR, which is how Woodward ends up deciding that Trump is unfit for the job, is to make a comparison that is simply beyond belief.  How could any other President stack up against FDR?

              The first half of the book covers foreign policy issues with Russia, China and North Korea that eventually led to resignations of Tillerson and Mattis, who were respectively the initial Secretaries of State and Defense. Both ultimately resigned because they were unable, they believed, to carry out their responsibilities for a President who would say one thing in a meeting with either of them, and then blow out a tweet which said exactly the reverse.

              I recall the first 18 months of the Trump Administration when it seemed like a highly-placed member of the Executive branch was quitting every other day, at least two dozen senior people quit or were fired during that time.  Know what? The government didn’t collapse.

              If I had an opportunity to interview Trump, and I wanted to figure out what made his Presidency so different, I would ask him why he seems to attract so many scam artists like Manafort, then those two Russians who told Giuliani they could help him dig up dirt on Biden in the Ukraine, then Bannon, now DeJoy, there must be others as well.

              Maybe I’ll find the answer in Michal Cohen’s book which I’m going to read tonight.

A New And Good Gun Book.

              The problem with much of the gun-control advocacy activities that have become more frequent over the last several years, is that most of the people who get involved in the movement to reduce gun violence don’t have much involvement, interest, or experience with guns. Which means that most folks who work on solutions to an ongoing problem which accounts for more than 125,000 preventable deaths and injuries every year, have absolutely no understanding or awareness of how guns are owned or used.

              You can gain some very perceptive insights into this issue by reading a new book, American Druthers, written by Michael McNaney, who describes himself as a “highly trained, gun owning and otherwise ‘everyday’ American,” who was born in Iowa and later lived in South Georgia, two places where basically everyone has a gun.

              By the time McNaney was twelve, he had gone hunting with family members countless times and had started shooting one of the 22-caliber rifles that was around the house. He bought a 30-caliber M1 carbine and a shotgun at Kmart when he was sixteen, and at nineteen bought a Ruger 22-caliber target pistol as well as an Italian-made copy of the 9mm P-38.

              The first 20 or so pages of this book-memoir lead up to what the author describes as a “definite turning point for myself and guns.” Prior to that point in time, which was November, 2012, McNaney had owned, borrowed, shot, and sold countless guns, for years he had a whole arsenal of weapons, at other times he was unarmed.

              In reading the accounts of his life and his guns, what comes out is how normal and typical he believed guns and gun ownership to be. He always knew gun owners, he often talked to others about guns, but most important, he never found it necessary to question whether or not he needed or didn’t need to own a gun. He also never thought about whether guns were ‘good’ or ‘bad.’ They were just something which was or wasn’t around.

              These first pages of his book, what he refers to as the ‘pre-Utah’ period of his life, should really be read by everyone in the gun-control community, particularly those who, as I said earlier, haven’t been owners or users of guns. What comes across in this text is not only the normalcy of guns and access to guns, but how this normalcy would never have made McNaney think about guns one way or the other, until one afternoon in early November, 2012 when he was shot four times.

              I’ll let you read the details of the shooting, suffice it to say that it’s a true miracle that McNaney is still alive. It also was the case, not very frequent in gun assaults, that McNaney had been sitting and minding his own sweet business in the moments just before the assault took place. Most shootings between to individuals grow out of long-time, continuous disputes. In this instance, McNaney had gone out of his way to avoid contact with his assailant prior to the attack.

              The rest of the text, and the book is an easy and pleasant read, are McNaney’s ideas about what we should do with our guns. He’s not opposed to gun ownership, the fact that someone tried to kill him for no reason whatsoever has not turned him against guns. But it has made him commit to the following goal: “All firearm owners in the United States to be highly trained, non-threatening and perfectly respectful with, and ultimately responsible for, their firearms.”

              How McNaney believes we could get to that point is explained in a series of proposals which are found in a ‘Solutions’ chapter near the end of the book. I’ll leave it to each reader to decide whether McNaney’s on the right track.

              I liked this book for one simple reason, namely, that the author is a decent and honest man. And no matter whether I agree with them or not, when it’s honest, I’m always willing to hear what they have to say.

              The book is available on Amazon.

Where’s The Trump Base?

              Want to know how Joe and Kammie are really doing in the 2020 race?  Don’t spend all you time poll-watching in the so-called ‘battleground’ states. Spend a few minutes looking at the polls in the really red states.

              I’m talking about states like South Dakota, Montana, Missouri, Tennessee, places like that. These are states where the GOP could literally run a piece of dog shit for President and the dog shit would still win.

              Here’s a graph which compares the percentage of votes that Trump received in 2016 versus what he would get if the 2020 election were held today:

              The reason that none of these states are considered ‘battleground’ or ‘swing’ states is because if a Democratic Presidential candidate ever won in any of them, it was before I was born. And this chart only contains states for which there have been enough polls to make a credible comparison between four year ago and today.

              So, for example, this chart doesn’t contain such red-only states like West Virginia (the dumbest of the dumb states) because the last poll held in West Virginia was on January 8th. In that survey, Trump had a 66-31 lead over Joe, a gap that was slightly less than the 68-24 gap that he enjoyed against Hillary in 2016.  Or take a state like Nebraska, where Trump got 58.5% of the vote in 2016 and where the only 2020 poll taken in August shows him ahead of Joe, 48-46. But again, one poll doth not a prediction make.

              So let’s go back to those 8 reliable Republican states where we have enough poll data to make a valid comparison between he campaign of 2016 and the 2020 campaign. Frankly, if I were trying to figure out a re-election strategy for #45, I would be as much or even more concerned about the poll results from these states than what we are seeing in the so-called ‘battleground’ states.

              First and most important is the fact that the overall gap in the 12 battleground states is less than 3 points – Joe’s average is 48.06%, Trump’s at 45.17%. If Trump were to take two-thirds of the dog-shit votes in all those states, he would win again.  On the other hand, in the 8 really red states, Trump’s average is 52.36%, compared to the 57.78% of the votes that were cast in 2016. 

I’m not saying that Joe can flip any of those states, his average polling number is 41.48%. But the fact that Trump’s support in his strongest states has eroded over the past four years, tells me that all the talk about the so-called ‘loyalty’ of his base is just wishful talk. Back in 2016, Hillary rolled up a whole, big 37% average in those 8 deep-red states. In other words, Joe is now registering 12% more support and Trump is pulling 10% less in the dumbest states.

And by the way, before you start thinking that I’m over-stating the problem for Trump, think about this. In 2016, the dog-shit vote was 5.22%; right now it’s basically the same – 6.15%. So this year there’s no more wiggle room than there was in 2016. This year Trump’s numbers in his strongest states will come in below where they were when he ran for the first time.

If Trump’s numbers were holding steady this time around, then the Biden threat wouldn’t mean much at all. But his numbers aren’t holding, not just in the battleground states, but in all states. And it’s one thing to convince voters who haven’t made up their minds to pull your lever or check your box. It’s quite another to make people who no longer support you to come back to the fold.

You don’t make that argument by telling everyone how great you are because they’ve already decided that you’re not so great. You have to make them understand that the candidate they are now supporting represents all kinds of dangers which perhaps they don’t understand.

With 7 weeks to go in this campaign, does Trump have any more desperate, anti-Biden assaults up his sleeve? Don’t worry, he’ll try something.

Is There A Way For Trump To Win?

              If I feel a total contempt for anyone active in the political arena these days, it’s not the politicians themselves, not even Donald Trump. The ones I believe are the worst of all the worst are political commentators, op-ed writers and consultants who started out as liberals and then went the other way.

People like Geraldo and Juan Williams really make my skin crawl because if you decide that liberalism isn’t your bag, that’s fine. So go do something else. Make a pizza, drive a cab, lay brick, but don’t turn around and help out the other side. Particularly when the other side is led by someone named – ucchh – I can’t even say his friggin’ name.

              Another member of the turncoat group is Doug Schoen. He flitted in and out of the Clinton orbit and has also done consulting work for Bloomberg’s brief Presidential campaign. But the bottom line is that he’s a Republican, and his true colors are on display in a piece in The Hill which basically says that you-know-who still has a good chance of winning the Presidential race.

              Here’s the basic argument that Schoen makes about the polls: “While Biden leads nationally and in several battleground states, many of his leads in swing states are even tighter than they were for Hillary Clinton in 2016, notably in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Florida, all states that she lost.” He then notes that Arizona has become a clear battleground state, ditto Florida where the Cook Report now rates as a ‘toss-up’ rather than a Biden ‘lean.’

              What Schoen forgets to mention is that Biden doesn’t need Florida or Arizona. He doesn’t even need Nevada where Trump appeared today before his usual Nuremburg-type crowd. Unless something really crazy happens in the Commie/Socialist/Sanctuary/BLM states, Joe needs 50% plus 1 in Michigan, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, and PA. That’s it. Fartig – finished. Done.

              As for Schoen’s missive, either he doesn’t know how to read polls, or he’s lying, or both. When he says that Joe’s lead in states like Michigan and PA is smaller than what Hillary enjoyed at the same time in 2016, he’s only referring to the gap in the percentage of poll respondents who indicated for whom they were going to vote.

              Right now, Joe has a 6.5-point lead in Michigan and a 5.0 lead in PA. At this date in 2016, Clinton had bigger leads in both states but, and this is a very important but, the dog-shit responses in both states (i.e., other named candidates or not yet sure) was twice as high for Hillary as it now is for Joe. If Trump were to grab every voter who says he or she is voting Libertarian plus half the voters who still can’t figure anything out, he would still lose both states.

              Most of Schoen’s column is spent talking about the growth of Hispanic support for Trump in Florida, particularly in Miami Dade County. The same day that Schoen’s column appeared, the Florida Lt. Governor announced that Trump has really ‘delivered’ to the Latino community, and that his popularity is based on the fact that “Latinos care about faith, they care about family and they care about freedom, and Joe Biden doesn’t stand for any of those things.”

              Know what else Trump has delivered to Miami Dade County? A death-rate from Covid-19 which is twice as high as the death rate in Florida as a whole. Miami Dade County represents 10% of the state’s total population and the virus mortality number is at 2,900 out of 12,800 statewide virus deaths.

              But let’s say that even with the pandemic in Florida not being under control, that Biden is simply too much of a Socialist for the Latino population this year. So what? He doesn’t need Florida and by the way, the statewide polls for Arizona, which also has a large Latino population, happen to be running stronger for Joe.

              Here’s how the battleground looks today:

              Joe is at or almost at the magic 50-mark in 5 states. Both guys have dropped a tiny bit in several states and pushed up a bit in several other states. Bottom line: nothing has changed. But the most important news is that together, the dog-shit number in all 12 states is under 7. Which means that in order for you-know-who to get re-elected, he has to convince a bunch of Biden supporters to switch to him. 

              That’s what makes the 2020 campaign so different from 2016.