Did Trump Really Win The Small-Town Vote?

Now that the Michigan GOP delegation has returned home after telling Trump to stick his voting ‘fraud’ nonsense up his rear end where it belongs, just about the last legal challenge cooked up by the Trump team (Roger Stone, Steve Bannon, et. al.,) is another silly pleading before a Pennsylvania federal court that has already witnessed what is becoming an expected Giuliani melt-down in front of the press.

Want to get a real, no-holds-barred portrait of how Giuliani has become such a stooge? Read this op-ed memoir by his daughter Caroline Rose which somehow escaped my attention when it appeared last month in Vanity Fair. It turns out that the way Rudy reacts whenever someone asks him a question he doesn’t like, is exactly the way he used to respond to his daughter when she questioned anything he said.

Having lived through the childhood of my three kids and actually survived the ordeal, let me tell you this. The one thing you better learn as a parent is to assume that every word which comes out of your mouth will be challenged by your kids. You don’t figure that one out, you better forget parenting in any real sense. Obviously, Rudy hasn’t figure it out either as a parent or as a person who leads a very public life.

It turns out that when you compare county election results in Pennsylvania between 2016 and this year, you finally understand what the whole ‘election fraud’ narrative is all about. Back in 2016, Trump flipped Pennsylvania by less than 45,000 votes out of almost the 6 million votes that he split with Hillary. Like in Michigan, the Clinton campaign was managed so miserably that Jill Stein got more than 45,000 votes.

Of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties, Hillary got a majority in 7 counties, Trump got all the rest. Where did Hillary score? In the counties representing Philly and Pittsburgh, as well as some of the smaller, industrial towns like Scranton and Allentown where the unions still have some say.

In Philadelphia and the surrounding burbs, Hillary piled up almost half her total, statewide vote. In some of the smaller rural counties, on the other hand, her numbers were so slight that it’s almost like she wasn’t on the ballot at all. She got less votes in Cameron County, which is up in the Allegheny State Forest, than she got in the little town where I live which is adjacent to Amherst, MA.

Trump, on the other hand, piled up more than 70% of the votes cast in 22 counties. Getting 7 out of every 10 votes in any jurisdiction is a remarkable example of a candidate’s appeal. Together, these 22 counties didn’t give Trump even half the votes that Hillary got from the city of Philadelphia alone, but again the comparison explains how and why Trump talks the way he does.

Now let’s turn the page and look at this year’s returns. For all the talk about how the Trump campaign pulled out more GOP voters than anyone had ever previously seen, what is remarkable about the Pennsylvania results was not only how many new votes Joe found in the usual ‘Democrat’ strongholds, but how his campaign made inroads into places where the GOP has always controlled the votes.

This time, Trump piled up more than 70% of the vote in 21 counties and his total popular vote increased by 13.6% over 2016. Impressive, right? Now dig this: Joe carried the 7 counties that Hillary carried and flipped 4 more counties as well. His popular vote increased by 18% over the statewide Hillary vote. More important, there were also 9 other small counties where Trump’s percentage of the 2020 total vote was less, and Joe’s percentage of the total vote in each county was greater than what Hillary received in 2016.

Let’s recall that Obama made his biggest verbal gaffe of the 2008 campaign when he talked about how residents of small, rural towns were ‘clinging’ to their religion and their guns. He happened to be talking about towns in places like Carlisle County, where Trump got almost 60% of the 2016 vote, Hillary got 38%. This year Trump got 54%, Joe got 44%. A 22-point gap between red and blue numbers has been reduced to 10 points.

No wonder the judge in Williamsport threw out Trump’s last challenge to the Pennsylvania vote last night.

Please Mister President. Don’t Concede.

              Can you imagine how boring it’s going to be after Joe and Kammie take their oaths on January 20, 2021? I won’t have anything to write about except the same old gun stuff again. At least, right now I can listen to the ever-shrinking circle of Trump diehards and pick up something which is so looney that I can post an immediate response.

             But what am I going to say when Joe gets up and announces that the Pandemic needs to be addressed? In case you haven’t noticed, Trump has already decided that the corona virus threat has come to an end.

              If you think I’m overstating the degree to which the Trump gang is just pushing out one nutty and desperate narrative after another, try this. On Friday, Rush Limbaugh said that Joe was a ‘placeholder’ for – ready? – an “international, elitist, globalist conspiracy” that wants to take over the world and in the process, “destroy our Constitutional rights.”

              Now I’m assuming that this international cabal probably includes George Soros, Mike Bloomberg, and Bill Gates. Rush didn’t give us any other names or identify the countries where this shadowy group of elitist globalists live. But he delivered this pronouncement with a straight face. He really did.

             Understand one thing about Rush. His show, which allegedly gets 14 million daily listeners, can only be heard between 9 A.M. and 3 P.M., no matter where you live. In other words, his audience consists basically of people who are sitting around at home, either retired folks who are always pissed off, or bored housewives or maybe some bored househusbands. And they’ll listen to anything, including the endless advertisements for home remedies to cure erectile dysfunction or various products to protect yourself from identity theft.

           On Saturday, somewhere between 8,000 and 9,000 of these folks showed up in D.C. for what was billed as a ‘Million MAGA March’ to support the continued refusal of Trump to admit electoral defeat. The White House claimed that more than one million demonstrators attended the event, the D.C. police set the number at somewhere under ten thou.

             Remember when the then-news guy Sean Spicer got up after the 2017 inauguration and claimed that the event drew the largest inaugural crowd of all time?  That was the first time the White House promoted a bald faced lie to promote the Oval Office’s occupant but it certainly wasn’t the last. Who was behind the so-called ‘spontaneous’ outpouring of MAGA support this past weekend for Trump? None other than Steve Bannon and Roger Stone.

             Once the word got out that Facebook was being used to promote the fake news about all the election fraud, Zuckerberg’s company took the group down. Which of course is just another example of how the internet is controlled by the same group of international globalists that are going to destroy our Constitutional ‘rights.’

             In response to this egregious assault on your freedoms, the Breitbart website not only pointed out that Zuckerberg donated over $100 million to an anti-Trump political group, but “ordinary Republican voters are not allowed to use his platform to organize in defense of election integrity.” Since when have Roger Stone and Steve Bannon become ‘ordinary Republican’ voters?

           Actually, Stone and Bannon are two scammers who have used the internet to illegally enrich themselves over the years – one was convicted, the other one only indicted so far.

            I can’t imagine having as much fun writing about Joe and Kammie as I have had writing about Trump and his cavalcade of noisemakers over the last several months. Of course once Joe takes the Oath of Office, the pro-Trump gang will continue to promote their nonsense and sell their banners, flags, bumper stickers, and other crap online, but it just won’t be the same.

            Maybe I should start selling a ‘Gun Nuts for Trump’ decal on my website. At least it will give me something to do while Joe and Kammie conduct government business by actually getting something done.

The President Battles On.

 Remember Michael Moore’s great movie – Where’s Roger? – about the collapse of Flint? The 1989 movie, which made Michael Moore famous, covered what happened to the city of Flint, MI after GM closed a big assembly plant and their CEO, Roger Smith, refused to discuss the company’s decision with Moore or anyone else.

Now we seem to be entering a similar phase in the goings-on within the White House and the virtual disappearance of Donald Trump.  With the exception of a silent walk past the Tomb and the Eternal Flame in Arlington, Trump hasn’t made a single, public appearance in the last – ready? – nine days!

So Trump continues to tweet. So what? There happens to be a team in his office that works his Twitter feed, including posting videos and writing text. I notice that the header photo is from a rally that was held ten days ago, and the tweets are largely retweets from the latest nonsense from Sean Hannity, as if anyone’s watching him.

Here is a President who has gone from being the most powerful media presence in the history of American politics to a media presence who all of a sudden doesn’t exist. But what does exist is the corona virus, and at least three people who were at the shindig had subsequently tested positive for Covid-19.

But don’t worry. Trump isn’t done planning super-spreader events. He’s got one coming up this weekend which is being billed as the ‘Million MAGA March,’ which will fill the capitol with an army of supporters who still believe in Trump. And which groups are going to bring what Kayleigh McEnany said yesterday would be a ‘big crowd?

Among other patriotic groups assembling in front of the White House will be the Oath Keepers, the Three Percenters and the Proud Boys, all of whom have been promoting Trump’s alt-right bullshit and racism even before there was a Donald Trump.

The best announcement came from the Oath Keepers, who claim they will send some ‘battle-hardened’ veterans to the demonstration to protect the crowd from left-wing terrorists and thugs. The picture above is what these battle-hardened veterans look like today. All I can say is that if the schmucks who are allegedly planning this event want anyone to show up, they better have plenty of pizza around for the patriots to eat.

Going forward, Trump has two big problems, neither of which is there really any way to solve. Problem number one is that his campaign is broke, ditto the RNC. This may be the reason why not one, but two law firms have decided to not go forward representing Trump in his battle over the election results. Who’s now representing the President in Pennsylvania? A divorce attorney [thanks Paula] with absolutely no experience in election or public law.

Oh I forgot. Trump’s new lawyer has been working on a PhD in Public Administration at West Chester State University since 2018. She ‘anticipates’ completing her dissertation in 2022.

Problem number two, and this is the bigger problem, is that every day, drip, drip, drip, another Republican announces that he’s sick and tired of all Trump’s post-election nonsense and wants this crap to end. The latest pronouncement came from a GOP Congressman in Illinois, Adam Kinzinger, who referred to Trump’s recent tweets about election fraud as ‘insane.’

I continue to hope that Trump refuses to concede, because I really want his rock-ribbed supporters to end up as nothing more than the guys who show up at Oath Keeper meetings, eat their pizza, drink their beer, and go home. I can’t think of a more fitting way to celebrate Trump’s four years in office than asking him to inspire the patriotism and love of country that the Oath Keepers represent.

And let’s not forget the Proud Boys, whose chief acolyte happens to be Roger Stone.

Two Victims – Hillary and Trump.

If the last several days have demonstrated anything, it’s that we elected a momser as President in 2016. What’s a momser? It’s Yiddish for ‘bastard,’ as in someone born out of wedlock. But what the word really means is someone who, given the choice, will behave in a reckless or irresponsible manner every, single time.

We had a momser in my family; a cousin who cheated through every business deal that came his way. Problem was that he didn’t discriminate between business relations and family relations. If he went to a family member and borrowed some gelt (read: money) the loan would never be repaid. 

Believe it or not, I don’t think that Trump has necessarily committed a single crime since sitting his fat ass down behind the Resolute desk. What I do think is that he has behaved like a momser because that’s the only way he has ever behaved. And for that, my dear friends, we can thank Hillary Clinton for how she managed her Presidential campaign.

I was very impressed by Hillary’s 2000 Senate campaign when she took over Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s Senate seat. She was going to win no matter whom the Republicans ran, there was no doubt about that.

But rather than sitting in New York City and waiting for the Democratic machines to do their usual job in New York, Buffalo, Rochester and other urban locations, Hillary actually went out and visited every, single one of New York’s 65 counties, some of which had never seen a Democratic candidate appear in any election at all.

Know how many Democrats live in Chenango County? Have you ever heard of Chenango County? It sits midway between the great cultural centers of Preston and Oxford. Does that help you out?

But knowing how to manage a statewide campaign is one thing, knowing how to run the whole board is something else. If anything, Hillary should have known after dropping out of the 2008 campaign that she didn’t have a ghost’s chance of winning a national campaign when she couldn’t even convince a majority of her own party that she was ready for the Big Time.

So what did we end up with? We ended up with a candidate who refused to admit any wrongdoing or even lapse of judgement about using a private email server to receive sensitive government information after The New York Times first broke the story in March, 2016.  She came out with a mealy-mouthed mea culpa in July. How long did it take Trump to apologize for the Billy Budd tape? One day.

And all we hear from our liberal media friends is how Trump’s incapable of ever admitting a mistake. Why did it take Hillary four, friggin’ months to come out and say what she should have said in response to the story in The New York Times?  After all, the whole issue of government officials receiving government documents on private email systems had been floating around for more than a few years.

In fact, as early as 2009, a liberal advocacy group, CREW (Citizens for Responsibility & Ethics in Washington) made a request, which was rebuffed, to get records covering Hillary’s emails. And this request didn’t come from the enemy – it came from friends.

What did Hillary think would happen? That the issue would just fade away? How could she not have known that her likely opponent in the general election would use this issue to frame his entire campaign?

The good news as I’m writing this column is that Joe has now gone ahead in states that are still counting votes to give him more than what he needs. And if Trump can find the money to challenge these results all the way to the Supreme Court, let him proceed. If they do a recount, it will probably turn up more votes for Joe.

I just sent $200 to Joe’s new Biden Fight Fund to help pay the costs of any legal challenge to his campaign. Now I’m going to go out, walk 9 holes at my club, maybe even drop a few putts, and then we’ll see what we see.

In the meantime, I hope that after Joe takes over next year, that Hillary and Trump will do a joint lecture tour. After all, this will give them both the opportunity to talk about how elections were ‘stolen’ from them.

Donald Trump Believes In Equal Opportunity For All…The Crooks.

              I was born in 1944 and until 1956 lived in Washington, D.C.  My grammar school, like all public schools in D.C., was segregated until 1954, following the Brown vs. Board of Education decision. Since the D.C. schools were on Federal property, they had to integrate right away. And once the schools started to integrate, ditto the neighborhoods as well. We lived in what had been an all-White neighborhood in Northwest, it became at least 50% Black almost immediately.

              I really didn’t notice any difference and to this day I don’t register skin color when I meet or talk to someone other than Leonard Mermelstein, who happens to be one of my cats. People are people, it doesn’t matter whether they are White, Black, Brown, straight, gay, LGBTQ or whatever they happen to be. As far as I’m concerned, it doesn’t matter who moves into my neighborhood as long as I can drive down to the corner and pick up the takeout from the Chinese. I must say that last night’s spareribs tasted wonderful for lunch today.

              Back to the 1950’s, okay? One of our new neighbors in D.C. was a Black guy who worked downtown in the USPS headquarters building in the Federal Triangle. He had some kind of management position and his son was a student at my public school.

              Many years later, I happened by chance to read his obituary in The (failing) New York Times. When he retired from the USPS, he was the highest-ranking Black official in the organization, having worked his way up from being a letter-carrier in his native city of Richmond, VA. But the reason he got an obit in The New York Times was because during World War II he was the only Black who commanded a warship.

              His command was a 60-man submarine tender that was in numerous Pacific battle zones during World War II. He mustered out of the service in 1945, returned to his native Richmond and got a job delivering the mail. A naval commander delivering the mail.

              This man worked his way up to the top managerial ranks in not one organization, but two. And he did it at a time when Blacks were rarely found at even the lowest ranks of any government organization, never mind an organization as lily-White as the U.S. Navy.

              I thought about this man several times over the last couple of days and my thoughts went like this: How many other men and women could have made the contributions to our country that this man made, had they been given half the chance? When we talk about discrimination, we usually focus on how racism and sexism robs the victims from their just rewards. But the real victims of racial and gender hatred are all of us because we don’t reap the benefits of what people who have been discriminated against might have otherwise achieved.

              It’s all fine and well that my man Barack got up there and talked eloquently and forcefully about preserving American ‘ideals.’ Maybe that’s his agenda, but I’m not going to vote for Joe and Kammie because I want to ‘save Democracy’ or some other high-sounding woof-woof like that.

              I’m going to vote blue because I want everyone to have an opportunity to make a contribution to this civic enterprise known as the United States. And if we have learned one thing from watching Trump since 2016, it’s that the only people getting an equal opportunity with him are crooks like Paul Manafort and Steve Bannon, who use their access to Trump to enrich themselves at the taxpayer’s expense. Which is what the polite term ‘money laundering’ really means.

              I’ll have more to say about Steve Bannon and those pre-election polls next week.

              Right now, please wear a mask at all times, keep your kids out of the classroom and stay safe.