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The Donald called

Ted and Marco called. Sarah Palin and Congressman Trey Gowdy called too, and there were others. I think I got a call from the Restore America to Greatness and Constitutional Government Patriotic Conservative Action PAC or something like that. I was getting one phone call every 10 minutes for a while yesterday.

I just got off the phone with Donald Trump. He says he “loves South Carolina” and that “he is the greatest jobs creator that God ever created.” Touting his “self funded campaign,” he says he is not beholden to the special interests. Trump probably lied about all those things. I can’t say about his feelings for South Carolina, but the majority of his contributions come from donors; he’s made the campaign loans and in-kind contributions, according to Politico last October.

I tried to ask him a question, but he just went on talking. I hung up before he finished and so I don’t know if he mentioned Ted Cruz’ citizenship. I saw a news report that said Trump was downplaying that issue in South Carolina.

It’s a little late for a campaign call, as the polls close in one hour. Of course, I already voted absentee for the other primary next Saturday. I’ll update this article with the results. I think Trump will do worse than the polls say.

Update:

7:15 PM – Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight.com writes: ” The exit poll currently has the race Trump 31, Cruz 27, Rubio 23. That’s closer than pre-election polls. Trump’s still ahead, but not by much.”

7:28 PM – CNBC calls Trump the winner.

30 Responses to The Donald called

  1. avatar
    Thrifty February 20, 2016 at 7:45 pm #

    So what do you folks think about Donald Trump’s chances of winning the Republican nomination? What about his chances at the general election?

    On the nomination, it seems like the Republican establishment really hates him but he keeps polling well and won a couple primaries. But at the end of the day, are these primaries even governed by the same kinds of laws that actual elections are? Could the leaders of the Republican party say “Screw the primary results, we’re not nominating this egomaniacal nutcase!”, and then just nominate Cruz or Rubio?

    I keep thinking that Trump wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in Hell in the general election. I think I read somewhere that his un-favorability ratings are, like, record breaking. Like higher than Nixon right after Watergate. But eternal pessimist that I am, I still worry about this guy winning.

  2. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 20, 2016 at 7:58 pm #

    Thrifty: So what do you folks think about Donald Trump’s chances of winning the Republican nomination? What about his chances at the general election?

    I think his chances of winning the nomination increase every day…..much to the terror of the Republican establishment…..what’s left of it.

    Whether the establishment can thwart Trump depends on the current rules (which I’m not familiar with) and how willing they are to flirt with a schism in the party. A cynic could consider the establishment letting him win just to drive a stake through the political heart of the Tea Party.

    Could he win the general? I don’t think so but six months ago I didn’t think he could win the nomination.

  3. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy February 20, 2016 at 8:09 pm #

    A recent NBC poll showed Trump had slumped to #2, 2 points behind Cruz. That poll is an outlier, but recent.

    CarlOrcas: I think his chances of winning the nomination increase every day…..much to the terror of the Republican establishment…..what’s left of it.

  4. avatar
    gorefan February 20, 2016 at 8:48 pm #

    We won’t have Jeb to kick around any more.

  5. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 20, 2016 at 9:17 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    A recent NBC poll showed Trump had slumped to #2, 2 points behind Cruz. That poll is an outlier, but recent.

    Yes….very much an outlier. Take a look at the latest compilation from Real Clear Politics

    http://tinyurl.com/pdcjjxq

    Their average has him at 34.2, Cruz at 20.6, Rubio at 16.0, Kasich Carson and Bush in single digits.

    With Bush out it will be interesting to see where his supporters go. Maybe Kasich?

  6. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 20, 2016 at 9:18 pm #

    gorefan:
    We won’t have Jeb to kick around any more.

    I don’t think his heart was ever in it.

  7. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 20, 2016 at 9:39 pm #

    CarlOrcas: With Bush out it will be interesting to see where his supporters go. Maybe Kasich?

    Thought from my wife: Maybe they will go to Sanders? Hmm.

  8. avatar
    Bob February 21, 2016 at 1:35 pm #

    If the RNC wanted to disqualify Trump for some petty infraction I’m sure they could find something. It’s not Trump’s organization — he doesn’t have the right to take it over. Or what if a truly mentally disturbed person was garnering the same support as Trump and was destroying the Republican Party? There has to be a way of getting rid of kooks.

    The RNC has to weigh whether or not unceremoniously dumping Trump is worth angering his fans.

  9. avatar
    roadburner February 21, 2016 at 2:04 pm #

    it’s funny, but a lot of president obama’s critics over your side of the pond claim he has lowered the opinión of americans and american politics on the world stage.

    well from folks i’ve spoken to in various countries over this side of trhe pond, the overall opinión has improved considerably since the GWB years.

    and yet the same people who make that claim tend to be trump supporters – and here in europe people are thinking `you CANNOT be serious about this guy!¨

  10. avatar
    Curious George February 21, 2016 at 3:04 pm #

    CarlOrcas: I think his chances of winning the nomination increase every day…..much to the terror of the Republican establishment…..what’s left of it.

    Whether the establishment can thwart Trump depends on the current rules (which I’m not familiar with) and how willing they are to flirt with a schism in the party. A cynic could consider the establishment letting him win just to drive a stake through the political heart of the Tea Party.

    Could he win the general? I don’t think so but six months ago I didn’t think he could win the nomination.

    I think the Republican establishment is terrified. Their hand picked man, Jeb Bush just made an exit, stage right. However, I think the GOP had better make a decision to fish or cut bait and decide whether they will support Trump. I think he has a chance to win the nomination and if that occurs, the general. Just a gut feeling looking a the variety of people who support Trump and his tenacity. I won’t be surprised if he wins the prize.

  11. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 21, 2016 at 3:30 pm #

    Curious George: I think the Republican establishment is terrified.Their hand picked man, Jeb Bush just made an exit, stage right.However, Ithink the GOP had better make a decision to fish or cut bait and decide whether they will support Trump.I think he has a chance to win the nomination and if that occurs, the general.Just a gut feeling looking a the variety of people who support Trump and his tenacity.I won’t be surprised if he wins the prize.

    I think they’re past the point of no return with Trump.

    If they did figure out a way to dump him he’d just run as an independent and guarantee a disaster.

  12. avatar
    Arthur B. February 21, 2016 at 3:46 pm #

    The Donald called

    He just called to say he loves you.

  13. avatar
    Pete February 21, 2016 at 3:55 pm #

    The Clown just remarked he’s not quite sure Rubio’s eligible to be President, either.

  14. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy February 21, 2016 at 5:16 pm #

    A disaster for whom? Certainly not for me.

    CarlOrcas: If they did figure out a way to dump him he’d just run as an independent and guarantee a disaster.

  15. avatar
    Keith February 21, 2016 at 8:13 pm #

    Curious George: I think the Republican establishment is terrified.

    The Republican ‘Establishment’ no longer exists. There is a core of apparatchiks who still pretend to operate according to plan. However there is no longer any actual plan and no possibility of agreement on a plan in the near future.

    The Republican Party is officially a rabble of disconnected personality cults with no concept of what it means to compromise and form coalitions.

    And that is bad for America, because the political system NEEDS TWO SANE parties.

    Perhaps they should just rename the party the “Narcissus Anarchist Party” and demonstrate a little bit of ‘truthiness’ to the electorate.

    I think he has a chance to win the nomination

    Looks like he could fall over the line.

    and if that occurs, the general.

    Snowballs chance in Hades. Clinton or Sanders, makes no difference.

    Trump can likely win the ‘Redneck’ vote in the General.

    Trump cannot win the Black vote – he will get less than 5% even if he has Carson as a running mate.

    Trump cannot win the Latino vote – he will get much less than 5%, even if the anti-Cuban Cuban voters go with him.

    Trump cannot win the ‘thinking’ White vote – he will get less than 30% of the White vote even when you include the Rednecks.

  16. avatar
    J.D. Sue February 21, 2016 at 8:19 pm #

    roadburner: it’s funny, but a lot of president obama’s critics over your side of the pond claim he has lowered the opinión of americans and american politics on the world stage.

    well from folks i’ve spoken to in various countries over this side of trhe pond, the overall opinión has improved considerably since the GWB years.

    and yet the same people who make that claim tend to be trump supporters – and here in europe people are thinking `you CANNOT be serious about this guy!¨

    —-
    When I’ve traveled overseas, I’ve found the same thing. The notion that we’ve lost respect because of Obama has no basis in fact.

  17. avatar
    Arthur B. February 21, 2016 at 8:35 pm #

    Keith: Trump cannot win the ‘thinking’ White vote – he will get less than 30% of the White vote even when you include the Rednecks.

    I would like to believe that is true. But when I think of my Republican friends, and I know that they don’t think any more highly of Trump than I do, there’s not the slightest doubt in my mind that they would, without a moment’s hesitation, vote for him over Bernie or Hillary.

  18. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 21, 2016 at 8:37 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    A disaster for whom? Certainly not for me.

    LOL!! Nor me.

  19. avatar
    CarlOrcas February 21, 2016 at 8:40 pm #

    J.D. Sue: —-
    When I’ve traveled overseas, I’ve found the same thing.The notion that we’ve lost respect because of Obama has no basis in fact.

    I traveled quite a bit during the Bush II years and the general feeling was that we were nuts.

    Friends I’ve stayed in touch with since think Obama is just fine.

  20. avatar
    Keith February 21, 2016 at 9:03 pm #

    Arthur B.: I would like to believe that is true. But when I think of my Republican friends, and I know that they don’t think any more highly of Trump than I do, there’s not the slightest doubt in my mind that they would, without a moment’s hesitation, vote for him over Bernie or Hillary.

    OK, maybe 30% of the white vote BEFORE adding in the Rednecks.

  21. avatar
    aarrgghh February 21, 2016 at 10:33 pm #

    trump will lose the general.

    Trump’s Negative Image (Jan 30)

    “Most political and media commentators have at this point installed Donald Trump as the GOP front-runner on the eve of the first actual voting set to begin on Monday in Iowa. But this narrative tends to obscure the fact that Trump is the most unpopular candidate of either party when the entire U.S. population is taken into account — and that he has a higher unfavorable rating than any nominated candidate from either of the two major parties going back to the 1992 election when we began to track favorability using the current format.”

    and when he loses, the search for 2020’s True-Blue Red-Blooded Rock-Ribbed Conservative™ will begin, for realsies this time.

  22. avatar
    Dave February 21, 2016 at 11:51 pm #

    Trump seems to have solid support of about 1/3 of GOP voters. And the GOP’s primary rules, like the Democrats, pretty much hand the nomination to anyone who has a consistent plurality, no matter how small.

    In the general, it is as always likely that GOP voters will largely line up behind him — but to win he also needs more than half of the independents. And it seems to me that if he can only line up 1/3 of Republicans, he’s not going to do better with independents.

    So Trump’s nomination is bad news for the GOP — but that doesn’t mean I’m rooting for it. If he’s nominated, there’s a non-negligible risk he could win.

  23. avatar
    Jon February 22, 2016 at 1:50 am #

    Guys, Trump is just latching on to a scared feeling across America. This is his third crack at a birther argument – shouldn’t we be looking at the bigger picture? I thought this editorial hit the nail on the head … http://theracetothewhitehouse.com/trump-goes-down-the-eligibility-path-again/

  24. avatar
    James M February 22, 2016 at 2:14 am #

    Thrifty: But at the end of the day, are these primaries even governed by the same kinds of laws that actual elections are? Could the leaders of the Republican party say “Screw the primary results, we’re not nominating this egomaniacal nutcase!”, and then just nominate Cruz or Rubio?

    The RNC rules make it pretty clear — Election laws may require that certain people are seated at the Convention, but they aren’t required to vote for a particular candidate. (Any law that could accomplish that objective could also be used to manipulate elections.)

    There is a strong faction within the Republican Party that wants the Primary to choose the nominee, but the status quo is that the Delegation choose the nominee, and changing that is a question of internecine persuasion which will be continuing long after the 2016 nomination. If a candidate gets 1237 delegates, I expect the party’s process to name that candidate in a fairly perfunctory manner. If not, then the possibilities are endless.

    Unlikely as it may be, the delegates Republican National Convention can legally choose anyone as the party’s nominee — the person does not even have to be a declared candidate. Arguably, an ineligible person may not be nominated but that may be a matter of politics and not a matter of law.

    This could be George H.W. Bush’s best shot at a second term.

  25. avatar
    James M February 22, 2016 at 2:20 am #

    J.D. Sue: The notion that we’ve lost respect because of Obama has no basis in fact.

    We’ve lost respect because our governing party displays such a fundamental arrogant opposition to our own head of state.

  26. avatar
    Keith February 22, 2016 at 5:07 am #

    James M: We’ve lost respect because our governing party displays such a fundamental arrogant opposition to our own head of state.

    Except that many countries have a Parliamentary system, whereby the Head of Government comes from the parliament itself, and the Head of State is either a Monarch or a President with little or no actual power. In such cases it is not all that unusual for the Parliament to treat the Head of State with disdain. For example: France. Italy. Spain.

    The Queen of England is usually pretty immune to such disregard, but her son and heir is not. He may well be the last King of England and the other Commonwealth countries (assuming he outlives his mother which is NOT a given at this point in time), even if his son is rather well liked.

  27. avatar
    Comrade Fogovich February 22, 2016 at 6:21 am #

    It’s been a very long time since Birther Report had a post that was directly about President Obama. I think Carl Gallups must admit, the Obots have been vindicated. 🙂

  28. avatar
    The Magic M (not logged in) February 22, 2016 at 8:53 am #

    Dave: In the general, it is as always likely that GOP voters will largely line up behind him — but to win he also needs more than half of the independents. And it seems to me that if he can only line up 1/3 of Republicans, he’s not going to do better with independents.

    The GOP faces two options:
    1. They dump Trump and lose at least half of his fanbase (even if he doesn’t run as independent, those people will not vote for any other GOP candidate out of spite), thus guaranteeing a loss no matter how well their candidate performs with the rest of the general electorate (none of them is popular enough to make up for losing 15-20% of the conservative base).
    2. They nominate Trump and face the problem a extremely polarizing candidate has with the decisive moderate voter.

    This is nothing but the culmination of the problem the GOP has had for quite some time – their candidate has to appeal to an increasingly large crazy part of their base, yet also to the very moderate independents who ultimately decide the election.

    To believe that it is enough for them to “get out the vote” among their conservative base may have worked with previous candidates, but I think that will be a problem with Trump. He may energize some more people on the right, but he will also energize a lot of “anyone but Trump” people in the rest of the political spectrum. I believe many people who’d usually sit out the election (“it doesn’t make much of a difference anyway”) will vote Democratic just to stop Trump.

  29. avatar
    Curious George February 24, 2016 at 9:19 am #

    Nevada exit poll: 57% unhappy with the federal government. This helps to explain Trump’s win in Nevada and his building momentum in his bid for the GOP nomination. The public is restless. Trump is riding a wave of discontent with government.

    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/02/nevada-gop-caucus-2016-219685

  30. avatar
    Thrifty February 24, 2016 at 9:49 am #

    It’s like those stories where, like, some evil wizard summons a powerful demon from the depths of Hell to help him conquer the world. Then the demon kills the wizard and goes on a rampage.

    We can come to only one conclusion…. the Tea Party is Maajin Buu.

    The Magic M (not logged in):
    This is nothing but the culmination of the problem the GOP has had for quite some time – their candidate has to appeal to an increasingly large crazy part of their base, yet also to the very moderate independents who ultimately decide the election.