1. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Appeals court says U.S. ‘motor voter’ law preempts Kansas ID rules

    A U.S. appeals court has upheld a lower court ruling requiring Kansas to allow thousands of people who registered to vote at motor vehicle offices to stay on election rolls, despite not showing proof of citizenship as mandated by a state law.
    The decision, filed in court papers late on Friday by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, clears the way for these voters to take part in the U.S. election in November.
    The decision is not expected to affect the state’s status as a Republican stronghold, but the legal battle over Kansas’ voter identification law has thrust the state into a national debate over voting restrictions.
    The National Voter Registration Act allows Americans to register to vote at state motor vehicle offices with no more documentation than they would need to get a driver’s license.
    “Under the facts of this case, section five of the NVRA preempts Kansas’ (documentary proof of citizenship) requirement as applied to motor voter applications,” Circuit Judge Jerome Holmes wrote in the court’s decision.
    The law is popularly known as the Motor Voter Act.

    Maybe if Kansas could show actual evidence of “voter fraud”. *snicker*

  2. says

    “Angela Davis: ‘I Am Not So Narcissistic to Say I Cannot Bring Myself to Vote for Hillary Clinton’”:

    Angela Davis—scholar, freedom fighter, former political prisoner, icon and my personal hero—told attendees at the Black Studies Conference at the University of Texas, Austin, that she is not so “narcissistic” to say that she won’t vote for Hillary Clinton.

    “I have serious problems with the other candidate, but I am not so narcissistic to say I cannot bring myself to vote for her,” Davis said.

    Davis seems to have joined the ranks of justice seekers and freedom fighters who believe that stopping Donald Trump—by any means necessary—should be the priority.

    This, of course, does nothing to dismantle a political duopoly that continues to deprioritize and terrorize black, brown, Indigenous and poor people. But it is a perspective that is gaining louder support as November draws near: That this election is different—because Trump is different—and independent parties can wait.

  3. says

    This article about Trump’s hatred of women is good.

    One aspect of the debate that possible hasn’t received enough attention, which I remarked on here a few minutes later as being strange but which took on more meaning as events unfolded, was Trump’s referring to Clinton as “Secretary Clinton” and then asking her if that was OK because “I want you to be happy. That’s very important to me.”

    I assume the people trying to prep him for the debate told him he should call her Secretary Clinton as that would convey respect and make her look bad if she called him Donald (which was probably unlikely in any case, given that he has no title because he’s never held office, and she’s known him a long time so calling him Donald is natural even if he can’t stand it). But he couldn’t just do it. His every fiber rebelled against simply treating a woman respectfully, so he sabotaged that plan by making the bizarre comments about wanting her to be happy, with that fake smile (the same one he used in Flint when interrupted by the pastor) which doesn’t even begin to disguise his longing to put a woman “in her place.” The most ordinary, basic respect for a woman is something he’s not capable of, or even of faking convincingly, and it shows in so many large and small ways.

  4. says

    “Trump Tax Records Obtained by The Times Reveal He Could Have Avoided Paying Taxes for Nearly Two Decades”:

    Donald J. Trump declared a $916 million loss on his 1995 income tax returns, a tax deduction so substantial it could have allowed him to legally avoid paying any federal income taxes for up to 18 years, records obtained by The New York Times show.

    The 1995 tax records, never before disclosed, reveal the extraordinary tax benefits that Mr. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, derived from the financial wreckage he left behind in the early 1990s through mismanagement of three Atlantic City casinos, his ill-fated foray into the airline business and his ill-timed purchase of the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan.

    Tax experts hired by The Times to analyze Mr. Trump’s 1995 records said tax rules that are especially advantageous to wealthy filers would have allowed Mr. Trump to use his $916 million loss to cancel out an equivalent amount of taxable income over an 18-year period.

    Mr. Trump declined to comment on the documents. Instead, the campaign released a statement that neither challenged nor confirmed the $916 million loss.

    Separately, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, Marc E. Kasowitz, emailed a letter to The Times arguing that publication of the records is illegal because Mr. Trump has not authorized the disclosure of any of his tax returns. Mr. Kasowitz threatened “prompt initiation of appropriate legal action.”

    The documents consisted of three pages from what appeared to be Mr. Trump’s 1995 tax returns. The pages were mailed last month to Susanne Craig, a reporter at The Times who has written about Mr. Trump’s finances. The documents were the first page of a New York State resident income tax return, the first page of a New Jersey nonresident tax return and the first page of a Connecticut nonresident tax return. Each page bore the names and Social Security numbers of Mr. Trump and Marla Maples, his wife at the time. Only the New Jersey form had what appeared to be their signatures.

    The three documents arrived by mail at The Times with a postmark indicating they had been sent from New York City. The return address claimed the envelope had been sent from Trump Tower.

    But the most important revelation from the 1995 tax documents is just how much Mr. Trump may have benefited from a tax provision that is particularly prized by America’s dynastic families, who, like the Trumps, hold their wealth inside byzantine networks of partnerships, limited-liability companies and S corporations.

    Politico, which previously reported that Mr. Trump likely paid no income taxes in 1991 and 1993 based on the casino commission’s description of his net operating losses, asked Mr. Trump to comment. “Welcome to the real estate business,” he replied in an email.

    Now, thanks to Mr. Trump’s 1995 tax records, the degree to which he spun all those years of red ink into tax write-off gold may be finally apparent.

    In “Art of the Deal,” his 1987 best-selling book, Mr. Trump referred to Mr. Mitnick as “my accountant” — although he misspelled his name. Mr. Trump described consulting with Mr. Mitnick on the tax implications of deals he was contemplating and seeking his advice on how new federal tax regulations might affect real estate write-offs.

    “Mr. Mitnick, though, said there were times when even he, for all his years helping wealthy New Yorkers navigate the tax code, found it difficult to face the incongruity of his work for Mr. Trump. He felt keenly aware of the fact that Mr. Trump was living a life of unimaginable luxury thanks in part to Mr. Mitnick’s ability to relieve him of the burden of paying taxes like everyone else.

    “Here the guy was building incredible net worth and not paying tax on it,” he said.

  5. HappyNat says

    SC @ 6

    Talking tonight I described a couple things he had done then paused, “He is the patriarchy personified”. His feeling of superiority over women and disgust when they challenge him is obvious. Watching him have his ass handed to him in November could help save 2016. Can you imagine his concession speech?

  6. chigau (違う) says

    If you do not vote,
    please do not engage in any discussions about “wasted votes”.

  7. says

    The first sentence of the Trump statement on the NYT revelations (which doesn’t contest the report’s validity) says the paper represents “global special interests.” I cannot emphasize enough how similar this language is to Nazi propaganda.

  8. says

    SC @18, I really don’t understand why Trump thinks he can get votes and/or mileage out of making fun of someone for having pneumonia. Also, Trump’s acting skills are really poor. His imitation of Hillary Clinton reminded me of the time he made fun of a disabled journalist. You can’t help but notice how he emphasizes, “Here’s a woman!”

    Also, how does he get away with claiming that Clinton gives 15-minute speeches and then rests for three days?

    As far as I can tell, Trump implied that Hillary Clinton is not “loyal to Bill.” What does that mean?

    He also claimed that Hillary Clinton “could be crazy.” Projecting again?

    Trump’s rant about the microphone at the debate, and the inclusion of the conspiracy theory that it was “purposefully broken” echoes the SNL cold open so closely that it’s scary. SNL was mocking Trump, and then he basically used the same script.

  9. says

    WaPo report on last night’s Trump rally in PA:

    Donald Trump’s campaign announced Saturday evening that the candidate would soon deliver a nine-sentence critique of comments Hillary Clinton made months ago about many of the millennials supporting her primary rival, Bernie Sanders. It was an attempt to latch onto a new headline in hopes of finally escaping the controversies that had consumed his week.

    It didn’t work.

    It took Trump nearly 25 minutes to read the brief statement because he kept going off on one angry tangent after another — ignoring his teleprompters and accusing Clinton of not being “loyal” to her husband, imitating her buckling at a memorial service last month, suggesting that she is “crazy” and saying she should be in prison. He urged his mostly white crowd of supporters to go to polling places in “certain areas” on Election Day to “watch” the voters there. He also repeatedly complained about having a “bum mic” at the first presidential debate and wondered if he should have done another season of “The Apprentice.”

    The rally started more than an hour and 40 minutes late because heavy fog delayed Trump’s arrival. His supporters grew tired of his looping musical playlist, at one point chanting: “Turn it off! Turn it off!”

    When Trump finally took the stage, it was clear that he was worked up about something as he quickly rushed through his usual talking points. He read the first sentence of the prepared statement: “A new audio tape that has surfaced — just yesterday — from another one of Hillary’s high-roller fundraisers shows her demeaning and mocking Bernie Sanders and all of his supporters.”

    Rather than continuing, Trump demeaned and mocked Sanders himself, saying that he has “a much bigger movement than Bernie Sanders ever had” and that he has “much bigger crowds than Bernie Sanders ever had.” Trump accused Sanders of tarnishing his legacy by making a “deal with the devil” and supporting Clinton.

    “Crazy Bernie,” Trump said at one point.

    He resumed his scripted spot: “To sum up…”

    But he interrupted himself: “And I’ll tell you the other thing: She’s an incompetent woman. And I’ve seen it. She’s an incompetent woman.”

    Halfway through the statement, Trump took a nearly 20-minute-long break to cover a range of topics, including these:

    — He reflected on how his movement has “the smartest people… the sharpest people… the most amazing people.” He said the pundits — “most of them aren’t worth the ground they’re standing on, some of that ground could be fairly wealthy ground” — have never seen a phenomenon like this.

    — He told the crowd to get a group of friends together on Election Day, vote and then go to “certain areas” and “watch” the voters there. “I hear too many bad stories, and we can’t lose an election because of you know what I’m talking about,” Trump said. “So, go and vote and then go check out areas because a lot of bad things happen, and we don’t want to lose for that reason.”

    — He declared that he won Monday night’s debate even though he had a “bum mic.” He asked the crowd if they think that “maybe that was done on purpose.” They cheered.

    — He said Clinton could not fight bad trade deals or Russian President Vladimir Putin because “she can’t make it 15 feet to her car,” alluding to video that showed Clinton buckling as she unexpectedly left a 9/11 memorial service early. Her doctor later said she had pneumonia. Trump then imitated Clinton by flailing his arms and jostling side to side. He walked unsteadily away from the podium as if he were about to fall over. “Folks, we need stamina,” Trump said. “We need energy.”

    — He claimed that he has a “winning temperament” while Clinton has “bad temperament.” Trump continued: “She could be crazy. She could actually be crazy.”

    Trump read one more sentence of the statement, then brought up Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of state.

    “She should be in prison, let me tell you,” Trump said. “She should be in prison.”

    The crowd cheered and chanted: “Lock her up! Lock her up! Lock her up!”

    “And she’s being totally protected by The New York Times and The Washington Post and all of the media and CNN — Clinton News Network, which nobody is watching anyways so what difference does it make,” Trump said.

    “You’re unsuspecting,” Trump said. “Right now, you say to your wife: ‘Let’s go to a movie after Trump.’ But you won’t do that because you’ll be so high and so excited that no movie is going to satisfy you. Okay? No movie. You know why? Honestly? Because they don’t make movies like they used to — is that right?”

    Trump yelled at the media to show his crowd, which he said would make for “better television,” pledged to win Pennsylvania and called supporters of international trade “blood suckers.”

    “Oh, I could be doing the ‘Apprentice’ right now,” Trump said at one point, seeming to harken back to a happier time in his life. “I loved it — 14 seasons. How good was that? Tremendous success. They wanted to extend — I could be doing the ‘Apprentice’ now. Somehow I think this is a little bit more important. Do we agree? Just a little bit?”

    “I didn’t need to do this, folks,” Trump said of his candidacy. “Believe me. This is tough work… This is hard work. Believe me, folks. This is hard work.”

    Trump told the crowd he’s beholden to his supporters and no one else.

    “Hillary Clinton’s only loyalty is to her financial contributors and to herself,” Trump said. “I don’t even think she’s loyal to Bill, if you want to know the truth.”

    The crowd gasped and many shouted: “Ohhhhh!”

    Trump shrugged.

    “And really, folks,” Trump continued, “really, why should she be? Right? Why should she be?”

    He shifted back to trade and jobs moving overseas, repeating himself from earlier. And he complained again about his “bad mic” at the debate and “this character Lester Holt” who corrected him more than Clinton.

    “You have 38 days to make every dream you ever dreamed for your country come true,” Trump said. “Do not let this opportunity slip away or be wasted. You will never ever have this chance again. Not going to happen again… You have one magnificent chance.”

    Trump said he was finishing up but he kept going for seven more minutes. He congratulated himself on predicting the Brexit vote. He plugged a speech his daughter Ivanka Trump is giving in the state next week. He listed endorsements. He pointed at an American flag on stage. And he complained about Clinton’s “false” commercials.

    “We are going to make America wealthy again,” Trump said as he wrapped up. “We are going to make America strong again. We are going to make America powerful again. We are going to make America safe again. And we are going to make America great again.”

    Trump thanked and blessed the crowd, pumped his fist in the air and then stepped aside to join them in applauding his speech.

  10. says

    Trump has called female journalists worse than “fat” or “little.” He called Jennifer Lin a c*unt. He told Ms. Lin that she had “shit for brains.”

    YouTube link.

    Jennifer Lin’s boss at the time confirms her story.

    Lin’s former editor at the Inquirer, Craig Stock, who was on the receiving end of Trump’s phone call, confirms every word of Lin’s story.


    There was no hello. But there was yelling, lots of yelling.

    The word “shit” was used repeatedly as a noun and adjective.

    I had shit for brains.

    I worked for a shitty newspaper.

    What sort of shit did I write.

    Before I could reply, he hung up.

    Then he called my editor in Philadelphia, Craig Stock. Now it was Craig’s turn to “Hold for Mr. Trump.”

    Craig was treated to the same Trumpian wordplay, but got an added treat. Trump referred to me as “that cunt.”

    Craig, a calm Iowan, asked Trump what was wrong with the story. He explained that The Inquirer would run a correction if the paper had made an error.

    Trump snapped that he didn’t read the story.

    “No one reads the story,” the 41-year-old blustered. “I read the headline and I didn’t like it.”

    BillyPenn link

    What was Jennifer Lin’s big sin in Trump’s eyes? An article she wrote implied that Trump paid a higher price than he had intended to pay when Merv Griffin competed with him to buy two casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Someone got the better of Trump in a business deal. Trump got played.

    The Trump campaign seems fixated on the fact that the vulgar phone call took place in 1988, so therefore Jennifer Lin and her editor must be lying.

    This accusation is categorically false. I find it incredibly coincidental that this person’s crystal clear recollection of one sentence, one word, spoken nearly thirty years ago just happens to coincide with Mr. Trump’s surge in Pennsylvania. This is nothing more than an avowed liberal reporter who is trying to exploit Mr. Trump’s reputation as click-bait for her tabloid stories.

  11. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I hope the media has caught on to The Donald’s deflection techniques. The main ones is to accuse the other side of his faults. So, if he says Hillary is disloyal, it means he is 90% likely to be disloyal.

  12. says

    […]Trump was trying to scare shareholders into accepting his offer with threats of bankruptcy and warnings that he was the only one capable of completing the over-budget Taj Mahal project. […]

    Another investor showed up and competed with Trump. The buyout for investors went from $15 a share to $36 a share. Trump was played. Somebody got the better of Trump in a business deal in 1988. A journalist who wrote about the deal, “How a Curious Visitor Beat Trump at the Casino Game,” got a phone call from Trump.

    Trump called the financial correspondent in New York City for The Philadelphia Inquirer and yelled at her on the phone. Trump called Jennifer Lin “shit for brains” and he later used the “C” word when describing Lin to her editor.

  13. says

    Daily Kos covered the “shit for brains” story (see comment 24).

    There was no hello. But there was yelling, lots of yelling.

    The word “shit” was used repeatedly as a noun and adjective.

    I had shit for brains.

    I worked for a shitty newspaper.

    What sort of shit did I write.

    Before I could reply, he hung up.

    Then he called my editor in Philadelphia, Craig Stock. Now it was Craig’s turn to “Hold for Mr. Trump.”

    Craig was treated to the same Trumpian wordplay, but got an added treat. Trump referred to me as “that [insert “C” word here].”

    Craig, a calm Iowan, asked Trump what was wrong with the story. He explained that The Inquirer would run a correction if the paper had made an error.

    Trump snapped that he didn’t read the story.

    “No one reads the story,” the 41-year-old blustered. “I read the headline and I didn’t like it.”

  14. says

    The Desert Sun of Palm Springs, California has endorsed Hillary Clinton.

    […] We have come to this decision with tremendous respect for history and The Desert Sun’s role in this community. In 90 years, we have never endorsed a Democrat. […]

    Historians will not hold this campaign in high regard.

    Trump has struggled to demonstrate a “presidential” temperament despite efforts by various campaign chiefs to add polish to the erratic, boorish, belittling candidate who blustered his way through the GOP primaries.

    History will not forget that Trump avoided deep policy debate through deflection, demeaning rivals in childish fashion: “Little Marco” Rubio, “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz, “Low Energy” Jeb Bush, “Crooked” Hillary Clinton.

    Name-calling demeans the office he seeks, yet it’s just one unsettling aspect of the xenophobic, nativist campaign Trump has waged. He has pricked the worst impulses of a frustrated American electorate.

    In the first head-to-head debate, the newly stage-managed Trump avoided pitfalls for about 20 minutes, but couldn’t resist whining about the Clinton campaign’s attack ads and Rosie O’Donnell. He backhandedly credited himself for not launching a vicious, personal attack on Bill Clinton. […]

    Desert Sun link

  15. says

    SC @18, I really don’t understand why Trump thinks he can get votes and/or mileage out of making fun of someone for having pneumonia.

    It looks like just a total meltdown.

    The surrogate talking point on the NYT article is that everyone hates taxes and he’s a “genius” for getting out of paying. If only he’d used his genius to prevent losing almost a billion dollars in a single year, in 1995, on a casino.

    Roger Stone is now tweeting that something’s going to drop on Wednesday about Clinton, and it seems to be in coordination with Assange and PutinLeaks, which is quite telling. (It’s almost making me wonder if it has something to do with Trump’s insinuations about Clinton’s infidelity. If it turned out she’d had an affair with, say, Huma Abedin, it might make her more likeable.)

  16. says

    This is a followup to SC’s comment 10.

    In the past, Trump made a big deal out of lecturing Americans for not paying taxes. He took a Mitt-Romneyesque approach: “You do have a problem because half the people don’t pay any tax.”

    After the New York Times bombshell (comment 10), which noted Trump took such a huge business loss (almost a billion dollars in 1995) that he may have used the loss to legally (but unethically) pay no federal taxes for 18 years.

    Newscasters are going to have fun pointing out the hypocrisy of Trump’s surrogates (not to mention Trump himself) now claiming to be a “genius” for not paying any taxes.

    […] On July 18, 2011, Trump appeared on Fox News and was asked about President Barack Obama’s comments that well-to-do Americans should make a sacrifice for the country by paying more in taxes. He replied:

    Well, I don’t mind sacrificing for the country to be honest with you. But you know, you do have a problem because half of the people don’t pay any tax. And when he’s talking about that he’s talking about people that aren’t also working, that are not contributing to this society. And it’s a problem. But we have 50 percent. It just hit the 50 percent mark. Fifty percent of the people are paying no tax.

    There are other examples of Trump emphasizing this Republican talking point. He tweeted in 2012:

    HALF of Americans don’t pay income tax despite crippling govt debt.

    True: about 50% of Americans don’t pay federal income taxes. The don’t earn enough money to hit to lowest taxable bracket. Many of them are seniors, young people, and other low-wage earners. Most of those people pay state, sales, real estate, city, social security and other taxes. They do pay taxes.

    During Romney’s campaign, Trump also said:

    You do have a large percentage of people not paying taxes. You do have a large percentage of people that feel they’re entitled.

    Ha. Calling out other people for feeling “entitled.” Really?

    And Trump stuck to that story, saying in 2015:

    The problem we have right now—we have a society that sits back and says we don’t have to do anything. Eventually, the 50 percent cannot carry—and it’s unfair to them—but cannot carry the other 50 percent.

    What does the Trump campaign say now?

    Donald J. Trump Trump has paid hundreds of millions of dollars in property taxes, sales and excise taxes, real estate taxes, city taxes, state taxes, employee taxes and federal taxes, along with very substantial charitable contributions.

    No backup for this claim was offered. No tax returns have been released. And please note the strong emphasis on everything but the federal taxes.

  17. says

    SC @28, yeah, I saw that. Several jurisdictions were represented, leading journalists to believe that someone in the tax-preparation or tax-signing stage leaked the papers.

    I wonder what kind of conspiracy Trump will cook up over this?

    Also, of course Trump is threatening to sue The New York Times.

    He has, perhaps, reasonable people in his own camp who see this as way to slow down his march to the presidency.

  18. says

    People are again sharing this article from May:

    When Donald Trump publicly floated the idea of running for president in 1999, his ex-wife Marla Maples made it clear she would spill the beans on her ex-husband if he were to make it to the general election.

    “If he is really serious about being president and runs in the general election next year, I will not be silent,” Maples told London Telegraph. “I will feel it is my duty as an American citizen to tell the people what he is really like.”

    The reaction from Trump and his attorney was swift and brutal. They launched a full-court effort in the press to discredit Maples and withheld an alimony payment to “send a message.” The episode illustrates how Trump uses character assassination and threats to quash any opposition. Maples has largely remained silent on Trump’s 2016 candidacy….

    Even better: the possibility that it was Tiffany.

  19. says

    The New York Times knew that Trump would threaten to sue them. I think they prepared for that.

    […] In an interview on ABC’s “This Week,” reporters David Barstow and Susanne Craig said lawyers had backed up the paper’s decision to publish the piece, which was based on 1995 tax records provided by an anonymous source who mailed the documents to Craig.

    Their reporting, including tracking down one of Trump’s former accountants in Florida, found that a $916 million loss Trump reported in 1995 would have entitled him to not pay federal income taxes for up to 18 years.

    A lawyer for Trump has threatened legal action on the grounds that publishing the records was illegal and unauthorized by Trump.

    “I don’t think it’s a crime to check your mailbox and that’s what we did and we did some reporting,” Craig said on CNN’s “Reliable Sources.” “They told us that they may sue and we are comfortable with the story and went ahead with it.”

    Craig declined to confirm whether the Times is sitting on more documents.

    “We’re doing a lot of reporting around this,” she said on CNN. “So, we’re going to keep on going.”

    Politico link

  20. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Interesting look at potential voters, Trump vs. Clinton. Looking for uptick in blue collar predominantly white counties vs diverse counties in Florida and Pennsylvania.

    The argument isn’t completely new. Long before the Trump campaign, Republicans have been arguing about the existence and size of a “hidden white vote” that could be activated with the right candidate to win the presidency for the GOP.
    Digging into the data, however, raises some questions about how big or real that army is.
    To get a sense of the potential hidden-Trump impact we looked at key counties in Florida and Pennsylvania. We singled out the five counties in each where whites without a college degree made up the largest percentage of the 18 and over population – those are places that are demographically predisposed to lean toward Trump. We then singled out five counties with the largest percentage of minorities in the 18 and older population – those places are least likely to lean toward Trump
    We looked at how voter registrations in those counties had changed since last fall since last fall. The numbers are not especially promising for the Trump campaign.
    In Florida the five most Trump-friendly counties had seen a 4.5% uptick in voter registrations. But that number lagged behind the 5.7% bump in registrations in the least Trump-friendly counties.
    In Florida, the percentage increase in the five most Trump-friendly counties was also below the increase in voter registrations statewide, 4.7%.
    In Pennsylvania the numbers are slightly less encouraging for Team Trump. Again there is a small increase in the counties that should be best for Trump (2.79%), but there is a much bigger increase in the racially and ethnically diverse counties that will likely be tougher terrain for him (5.62%).
    And, like Florida, in Pennsylvania the most demographically friendly counties for Trump are far below the 4.8% increase in voter registrations overall.
    None of this is conclusive, of course. We can’t say for certain that bigger voter registration numbers here are necessarily bad news for Trump. Maybe it’s the Trump voters that are registering, even in the counties that are least demographically suited to him.

  21. says

    Now Wikileaks is saying they’re not going to do the big announcement on Tuesday, citing security concerns at the Ecuadorean embassy. It seems Assange was going to go out on a balcony to make the announcement, but what’s strange is they’ve canceled not just that event but the document release itself, with no indication of when it will be. Much of what’s been promised appears to be hype, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t have the bombshell many think they do (or they themselves might have thought they did). But I’m not sure exactly what’s going on.

  22. says

    This is a followup to comments 10, 29, 30 and 32.

    Bernie Sanders responded to the Trump tax revelations:

    The rich are getting richer Almost everybody else is getting poorer. And yet billionaires like Donald Trump are able to manipulate the tax system so that they avoid paying federal income tax.

    If [Trump adviser Rudy] Giuliani thinks that Mr. Trump is smart and all the rest of us are dummies because we believe in America, we believe in our kids, we believe in national defense, well, I think they have a very distorted view of the American people and what this country is about.

    If you’re a billionaire, there are all kinds of loopholes that you can utilize that enable you, who may be a billionaire, not to pay anything in taxes.

    The text above is excerpted from an interview of Sanders on ABC News.

  23. tomh says

    I wish someone, maybe Clinton in the next debate, would ask Trump why the 50% who don’t pay taxes, (because they don’t make enough), are freeloaders, but when he doesn’t pay taxes, he’s smart. Of course, he’s in that 50% who don’t pay, so it gets a little confusing.

  24. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The two part part question that should be asked of Trump.
    1) Are you a patriot. (probable “yes” answer)
    2) Why aren’t you doing your patriotic duty and paying your fair share of taxes taxes?

  25. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Gee, for somebody out with pneumonia, Clinton pulled in $154 million for her and the democratic party in September.

    Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee raised more than $154 million in September to support her campaign, her best fundraising performance so far in the contest against Republican Donald Trump.
    Clinton campaign aides said she and her running mate, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, raised $84 million directly for her campaign and about $70 million for the Democratic National Committee and state parties around the country with which Clinton has joint fundraising agreements.
    More than 900,000 people donated last month as Clinton delivered a widely praised debate performance. About 2.6 million have donated to Clinton since the campaign’s inception, her aides said.

    I’ll call that stamina.

  26. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It appears the Trump’s losses in 1995 were totally out of the normal range. Chart in link.

    Millions of Americans over the years have applied business losses to offset personal income. The provision is intended to encourage people to start new businesses or expand existing ventures by investing in new equipment or hiring more workers.
    But like many of his personal, professional and political claims, the size of Trump’s 1995 claim of net operating losses was off the charts.
    A CNBC review of IRS tax return data found that in 1995 claims of net operating losses averaged about $98,000 per return. At $916 million, Trump’s net operating loss in 1995 was more than 9,000 times the average amount claimed that year.

    The average operating loss for those making more than a million a year was 614,000, less than one-thousandth of Trumps bad business.

  27. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Summary of an article from Der Spiegel: German government believes Trump would ravage U.S. economy: Spiegel
    10/01/2016 7:46

    Germany’s economy ministry believes a Donald Trump presidency would severely damage the U.S. economy, according to an internal memorandum reported by Der Spiegel magazine on Saturday.
    The ministry expects “shrinking gross domestic product, fewer jobs and higher unemployment,” in the United States if the Republican candidate were to implement his campaign pledges, the magazine cited the memo as saying.
    Trump, a billionaire businessman seeking his first public office, has proposed tax cuts worth $4.4 trillion and wants to curb government regulation and take a tougher stance on negotiating trade deals.
    He says his economic plan would produce annual economic growth of 3.5 percent and create 25 million jobs over a decade. But some economists have questioned the assumptions underpinning the plan.
    Trump’s pledges are “not feasible”, Spiegel cited the memorandum as saying. Moreover, the plans would violate international or U.S. law and could be “no basis for a realistic economic policy.”
    A spokeswoman for the German Economy Ministry declined to comment on the Spiegel report.
    Last month, economic research firm Oxford Economics projected the U.S. economy could be $1 trillion smaller than otherwise expected in 2021 if Trump becomes president.

  28. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Nerd wrote @39:

    The two part part question that should be asked of Trump.
    1) Are you a patriot. (probable “yes” answer)
    2) Why aren’t you doing your patriotic duty and paying your fair share of taxes taxes?

    I would naively try a trick question: [with imagined Drumph responses in {__} ]
    1) Are you a patriot? {A: YES}
    2) Do patriots pay taxes? {A: DUH, of course, loser)
    3) Can you show us how patriotic you are with your past tax returns? {A: *walks*out* }

  29. says

    Trump barely survived that business loss. His bankers would have been within their rights to liquidate everything, and to take the Trump name out of the picture. They decided that they would be even worse off if they took Trump’s name out of the picture.

    They put Trump on a monthly allowance.

    Trump’s bankers took a severe “haircut.”

    That’s the situation that Trump claims makes him a “genius.”

    He survived, financially speaking, but barely. A lot, a lot of other people suffered losses in the millions.

  30. says

    You may have noticed that neither Trump, nor his surrogates, nor any of his campaign personnel have denied the facts reported by the New York Times.

  31. says

    LeBron James endorses Hillary Clinton:

    …As a kid, I didn’t have much money. It was just my mom and me, and things were rough at times. But I had basketball. That gave me a family, a community, and an education. That’s more than a lot of children in Akron can say. There are a lot of people who want to tell kids who grew up like me and looked like me that they just don’t have anything to look forward to.

    That’s dead wrong. And that’s why I came back to Cleveland to continue my second mission. I am determined to make sure my kids in Akron have what they need to become their best selves. Opportunities, a support system, and a safety net for kids in poverty or kids in single-parent households shouldn’t be limited to those lucky enough to be blessed with athletic talent.

    I also tell all my kids how important it is that they give back to the community. Because if basketball has taught me anything, it’s that no one achieves greatness alone. And it takes everyone working together to create real change.

    When I look at this year’s presidential race, it’s clear which candidate believes the same thing. Only one person running truly understands the struggles of an Akron child born into poverty. And when I think about the kinds of policies and ideas the kids in my foundation need from our government, the choice is clear.

    I support Hillary because she will build on the legacy of my good friend, President Barack Obama. I believe in what President Obama has done for our country and support her commitment to continuing that legacy.

    Like my foundation, Hillary has always been a champion for children and their futures. For over 40 years, she’s been working to improve public schools, expand access to health care, support children’s hospitals, and so much more.

    …I am not a politician, I don’t know everything it will take finally to end the violence. But I do know we need a president who brings us together and keeps us unified. Policies and ideas that divide us more are not the solution. We must all stand together — no matter where we are from or the color of our skin. And Hillary is running on the message of hope and unity that we need.

    There’s still a lot of work to be done in Akron, Northeast Ohio, and all across our great country. We need a president who understands our community and will build on the legacy of President Obama. So let’s register to vote, show up to the polls, and vote for Hillary Clinton.

  32. says

    They put Trump on a monthly allowance.

    Trump’s bankers took a severe “haircut.”

    I think it’s the O’Brien book TrumpNation that has a description of some recorded and leaked conversations amongst bankers after one of his companies was taken public but he was still gouging some sort of “management fees.” If I recall correctly, they were jokingly asking they could pay “non-management fees” to keep him out of things because he was so incompetent and out of his depth. I’d love for someone to make that public.

    Yes to this.

  33. says

    Obama talks about direct line from Palin to Trump:

    In an interview published on Sunday, President Obama said that the nomination of Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential nominee in 2008 marked the beginning of a shift in the Republican party that led to the rise of Donald Trump.

    “I see a straight line from the announcement of Sarah Palin as the vice-presidential nominee to what we see today in Donald Trump, the emergence of the Freedom Caucus, the tea party, and the shift in the center of gravity for the Republican Party,” Obama told New York Magazine.

    “Whether that changes, I think, will depend in part on the outcome of this election, but it’s also going to depend on the degree of self-reflection inside the Republican Party,” he continued. “There have been at least a couple of other times that I’ve said confidently that the fever is going to have to break, but it just seems to get worse.”

    Yes, this is correct. At the end of Game Change (which is very good, by the way), Steve Schmidt is shown at McCain’s concession speech deeply concerned about the mobilization and incorporation of these forces by Palin. When I first saw it on HBO, it seemed a bit melodramatic – the far-Right didn’t seem to be ascendant in the Republican Party. But seeing it again this year I could appreciate the prescience of the tone of foreboding.

  34. says

    On Friday a recording of Hillary Clinton talking about Bernie Sanders’ supporters was leaked to the press.

    As is usual, conservative media jumped to the wrong conclusion, namely that Clinton was mocking Sanders’ supporters. She was not.

    Politico got the story so wrong that they had to rewrite both its headline and its lede.

    Bernie Sanders himself pointed out how wrong the initial interpretation by some news outlets was:

    “If you listen to the whole discussion that she had, a very important point that she made is that a lot of young people who went into debt, worked very hard to get a good education, get out of school and can’t find jobs commensurate with the education that they received,” Sanders said. “There’s a lot of unhappiness about young people and this is an issue that we must address.”

    The conservative outlet Washington Free Beacon posted the recording of Clinton on Friday and said it obtained the audio from a campaign worker’s hacked email.

    NBC News link.

    During an interview on ABC, Sanders made similar comments, characterizing Clinton’s comments as “absolutely correct.”

    Sanders will be on the campaign trail again this week. He will appear as a Clinton surrogate in Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota.

    Meanwhile, I think the spin of this leaked/hacked material by conservative media shows how desperate they are to pin the label of unlikeable on Hillary Clinton.

  35. says

    As a followup to the discussion upthread of the New York Times article showing that Trump lost almost a billion dollars 1995 by being a failure at business, there’s also proof that it wasn’t the first time he lost such a large amount.

    […] In 1990, Mr. Trump, though known publicly as financially savvy and very rich, was in deep financial trouble. He and his companies owed $3.4 billion and couldn’t make the payments. That posed the risk of lenders seizing his hotels, casinos and other assets.

    Worse, $830 million of the debt carried his personal guarantee. Creditors, if they wanted, could force him into personal bankruptcy. […]

    Wall Street Journal link

    So, yeah, five years before the 1995 debacle, Trump did basically the same thing in 1990.

    Such a genius. /sarcasm

    Here’s a story about how Trump cheated a music store owner when he refused to pay for the pianos he ordered for his casino in New Jersey:

    […] when I requested payment, the Trump corporation hemmed and hawed. Its executives avoided my calls and crafted excuses. After a couple of months, I got a letter telling me that the casino was short on funds. They would pay 70 percent of what they owed me. There was no negotiating. I didn’t know what to do — I couldn’t afford to sue the Trump corporation, and I needed money to pay my piano suppliers. So I took the $70,000.

    Losing $30,000 was a big hit to me and my family. The profit from Trump was meant to be a big part of my salary for the year. So I made much less. There was no money to help grow my business. I had less pianos in the showroom and a smaller advertising budget. Because of Trump, my store stagnated for a couple of years. It made me feel really bad, like I’d been taken advantage of. I was embarrassed. […]

    Washington Post link

  36. says

    Trump’s real estate organization provided a cushy home to bankers with ties to terrorism:

    […] Donald Trump’s real estate organization rented New York office space from 1998 to 2003 to an Iranian bank that U.S. authorities have linked to terrorist groups and Iran’s nuclear program. …

    U.S. officials later alleged that Bank Melli had been used to obtain sensitive materials for Iran’s nuclear program. U.S. authorities also alleged that the bank had been used between 2002 and 2006 to funnel money to a unit of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard that has sponsored terrorist attacks — a period that overlapped with the time the bank rented office space from Trump. […]

    Public Integrity link

    Trump did business with Iranians who were hostile toward the USA. He did business with a country that U.S. leaders had specifically declared was hostile to American interests.

    Trump took high-dollar rent checks from Iran’s Bank Melli during the time that he was describing Iran as a “bully” in his public discourse, and during a time when he was telling the U.S. government what they were doing wrong regarding Iran:

    At the time, Donald Trump called for the U.S. take a tougher line against the Iranian regime.

    In 1987, he suggested in a speech in New Hampshire that the U.S. should attack Iran and seize some of its oil fields to hit back for what he described as Iran’s bullying of America.

    Yeah, even in 1987 Trump was promoting the impossible and illegal idea of “taking the oil.”

    Not a genius.

  37. says

    There’s a new AP story about Trump’s behavior towards women on the set of The Apprentice. I would love for some of that original footage to be leaked. The campaign talking points seem to include that other women who worked there or were contestants didn’t have that experience. Well, sure – there are women at Fox who weren’t sexually harassed by Roger Ailes. Hardly any sort of defense.

  38. says

    Meanwhile, I think the spin of this leaked/hacked material by conservative media shows how desperate they are to pin the label of unlikeable on Hillary Clinton.

    The whole thing smacks of desperation. (And reminds me of WikiLeaks flailing wildly to portray the DNC emails as far worse than they were.) Hugh Hewitt ineptly shoehorns it into a totally unrelated discussion on AM Joy. They don’t bother to read and consider the remarks carefully enough to understand how they would likely be received by Sanders and his supporters – that they might even help Clinton. Trump, melting down, completely blows the plan to use the remarks in his rally on Saturday, instead insulting Sanders and at one point calling him “crazy Bernie.” And now it appears the audio might have come through DC Leaks, which is purportedly used by Russian intelligence. Bravo.

  39. says

    The Attorney General for New York has issued a cease-and-desist order for the Trump Foundation. The Foundation was operating without the proper paperwork.

    This means the Foundation is no longer allowed to solicit donations, like they did back in February when Trump skipped a Republican primary debate to hold a fundraiser for Veterans. (Hosted by a bogus Vets organization; and with donations not given to vets until about 4 months later, and then only as a result of constant hassling from investigative journalists).

    The Foundation can still distribute money, it just can’t solicit any new money. The Foundation may apply for the proper paperwork and get this straightened out eventually.

    Meanwhile, speaking of vets, Trump basically called vets with PTSD weak:

    […] When you talk about the mental health problems, when people come back from war and combat and they see things that maybe a lot of the folks in this room have seen many times over and you’re strong and you can handle it but a lot of people can’t handle it …

    He also repeated the canard that vets suffering from pain will kill themselves because they can’t get a simple prescription.

    […] hey have to wait so long that they end up … they can’t take it. They can’t take it.

    YouTube link to Retired American Warriors PAC event held 10/3/2016, today.

  40. says

    Here‘s the statement from the NY AG’s office:

    On Friday, September 30, the Office of New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman issued a Notice of Violation to the Donald J. Trump Foundation (“Trump Foundation”) and directed the entity to cease and desist from soliciting contributions in New York.

    The notice states that the Trump Foundation “is in violation of section 172 of Article 7-A New York’s Executive Law, which requires charitable organizations that solicit contributions in New York State to register with the Charities Bureau and to provide annual financial reports and annual audited financial statements.” Despite failing to register pursuant to Article 7-A, the Trump Foundation solicited contributions in New York State earlier this year, in violation of New York law.

    The notice directs the Trump Foundation to “immediately cease soliciting contributions or engaging in other fundraising activities in New York” and “to provide the [AG’s] Charities Bureau with the information specified in Section 172 within fifteen (15) days” of receiving the notice.

  41. says

    Concerning Trump’s avoidance of paying taxes and his claim of $916 million in losses, David Cay Johnston has a few things to say:

    […] Trump’s advisers almost certainly arranged the massive tax losses, skipped out on a massive income-tax bill, and then fashioned a loophole with more valuable tax benefits than the already liberal tax breaks Congress gives big real-estate owners while sticking others with the bill.

    Trump dumped the real costs of all this on investors who saw gold in his brand name, but who lost everything even as he was paid tens of millions of tax-free dollars.

    All this came from subtle clues on the front pages of Trump’s 1995 Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York state income-tax returns. Which sums were on which lines in each state pointed to how Trump must have organized his affairs. […]

    Trump’s gambit is easy to explain in plain English, but for tax wonks the short version is this: Trump combined tax benefits under Section 1231 of the Internal Revenue Code with the exception provisions in Section 108.

    The story of Trump’s income tax-free life begins in 1990 with Trump’s well-documented mismanagement of his casinos and his admission that he paid far too much for “trophy properties” like the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan and 23 worn-out jetliners for the short-lived Trump Shuttle airline.

    These mistakes created about $1 billion of “net operating losses,” or NOLs, under Section 1231 of the tax code.

    […] Trump threatened endless litigation unless 70 banks he owed money gave him millions more in new loans at low interest rates and provided him with $5.4 million a year for personal spending, the equivalent of $10 million in today’s money. […]

    What made the litigation threat credible was Trump’s refusal to pay more than 150 illegal immigrants who demolished the Bonwit Teller department store to make way for Trump Tower. A federal judge ruled that Trump conspired to cheat the workers, who never did collect all of their $4-an-hour wages despite an 18-year struggle.

    The bankers realized that a man who would endure almost two decades of litigation to avoid paying such meager wages might tie them up for eternity over the billions of dollars owed to them.

    […] The banks canceled close to a billion dollars of Trump’s debts and extended new loans on favorable terms.

    Normally, any part of a loan that is forgiven becomes taxable income, as millions of people who could not repay home mortgages or student loan debt have learned in recent years.

    That’s where Section 108 comes in. Three years after Trump bested his bankers, Congress amended that section to let real-estate professionals avoid income taxes on debts that were canceled. […]

  42. blf says

    Black immigrants much more likely to be deported over criminal offenses, data shows:

    Report from Black Alliance for Just Immigration reveals 2013 deportation rates for criminal grounds was 76% compared with 45% overall

    It is widely recognized that African Americans in the US are more likely to be arrested, convicted and imprisoned. A new report finds this pattern of criminalization has had a spillover effect for black immigrants.

    People from Africa and the Caribbean are twice as likely to face deportation due to a criminal conviction compared with those from other regions, and more than three times as likely to be detained while their cases are pending, according to the Black Alliance for Just Immigration.


    [… C]riminal convictions are just one of the reasons immigrants are placed in deportation proceedings. Others are funneled into deportation proceedings simply because of immigration violations. Overall, black immigrants are slightly more likely to face deportation for any reason than immigrants overall. Black immigrants comprise about 7% of immigrants in the US, and nearly 11% of those facing deportation.


    Unfortunately, there does not seem to be — or I’ve simply overlooked it — a link in the article to either the report or its abstract.

  43. says

    Meanwhile, speaking of vets, Trump basically called vets with PTSD weak:…

    And that’s a candid statement of how he thinks.

    How could any military people support this man? He’s suggested that the US military is weak and inept (calling them at one point the “gang that couldn’t shoot straight”), insinuated that soldiers stole money in Iraq and Afghanistan (you know that’s because it’s what he would have done himself), said a Vietnam POW who was tortured wasn’t a war hero and that he “likes people who weren’t captured,” said he would make generals commit war crimes, held one fundraiser for a fake veterans’ organization and another at which he announced donations that he never made until the press called attention to it, praised Putin and Saddam Hussein, sought to do deals with Qaddafi, and called on Russian intelligence to find and reveal alleged documents that he’s suggested are classified. His tax plan would cut taxes on the wealthiest people, taking money from services for veterans. And on and on. The military for him isn’t an organization of people he cares about – it’s what he uses to project his personal anxieties about weakness and ineptitude and his desire to project strength and power.

  44. says

    SC @57, regarding the fact that other “Apprentice” contestants have not complained about Trump’s misogynistic harassment: some Miss Universe contestants have also not complained about Trump.

    Doesn’t really mean anything.

    Alicia Machado did not sign the strict non-disclosure agreement that contestants signed who came after her in the timeline. Trump bought the pageant after Machado and other contestants were already involved.

    You may notice that the few other contestants who came forward to discuss Trump’s boorish ways were also not signees of the non-disclosure agreement that subsequent contestants signed.

    How many Apprentice contestants signed non-disclosure agreements?

    This reminds me, in a way, of Trump claiming that Trump University was a good deal because some of the students signed praise documents under the supervision of instructors. It is bullshit.

  45. says

    This is heinous: some states are using welfare money to fund so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” that are actually centers of anti-abortion/religious harassment of pregnant women.

    Missouri has a poverty problem.

    Almost 15 percent of the state’s residents live under the federal poverty line, a bare-bones guideline that means existing on $20,160 or less a year for a family of three. […]

    That kind of destitution can make it difficult to get enough food to eat. Missouri has the second-highest share of residents who have very low food security in the country. […]

    In such a climate, it might be reasonable to expect state lawmakers to be focused on how to alleviate economic suffering. But over the past five years, the number of people in Missouri receiving benefits from its welfare program has plummeted, falling by more than 100,000 people since 2011. The most recent monthly statistics show that only 37,486 people were getting cash assistance.

    That’s thanks to harsh measures lawmakers have put in place for those who need some help to get by.

    Lawmakers have cut people off after 45 months no matter whether they have a job or source of income — the federal cutoff is five years. […]

    States have gotten a fixed amount of money from the federal government to run their welfare programs since 1996, or when welfare reform turned it into the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant.

    […] when there are fewer people getting cash benefits, that means a state has more money left over that it can put toward other purposes. And in Missouri, one big purpose consuming the funding has been something that might seem unrelated to alleviating poverty: crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs), or organizations that run with the express purpose of discouraging women from getting abortions, often through misleading them or flat out lying to them.

    According to data collected by ThinkProgress, Missouri is one of seven states, including Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Dakota, and Texas, that use federal TANF dollars to fund crisis pregnancy centers. […]

  46. blf says

    How could any military people support this man?

    The US Army (at least) has had a problem with racism since forever. Teh trum-prat is a racist. That is perhaps one answer.

  47. says

    Tim O’Brien on Trump’s taxes and (lack of) business acumen:

    …As I’ve noted before, I’ve seen Trump’s tax returns — in conjunction with an unsuccessful libel suit he filed against me in 2006 for my book “TrumpNation.” While I can’t write specifically about what I saw, I can say that the returns would give voters useful and tangible insights into Trump’s actual track record as a businessman, philanthropist and taxpayer.

    But Trump has chosen not to release his returns. And I doubt he ever will, because they would reveal that the career he boasts so much about is built on sand. That’s just one reason the 1995 tax return anonymously sent to the Times is so valuable. It refutes Giuliani’s argument in big numbers (numbers that even the Trump campaign does not dispute).

    Most of the $916 million loss that Trump claimed for 1995 is probably derived from about $900 million in bank loans taken out in the mid- to late 1980s that he had personally guaranteed and that he used to wildly overpay for hotels, airlines, yachts, barren land and other trinkets. Trump couldn’t afford to buy any of this with his own money, he lacked the good judgment and foresight to pay the right price for almost everything he bought, and once he bought all of it, the interest payments on the loans quickly became unmanageable. Corporate bankruptcy ensued.

    None of these things are hallmarks of a great business operator or dealmaker, two of the central themes that Trump, Giuliani and the rest of Trump’s supporters have gestured toward when flogging Trump’s resume and suitability to occupy the Oval Office.

    “This is a guy who, when lots of businesses went out of business in the early 1990s, he fought and clawed back to build another fortune, to create tens of thousands of more jobs,” another Trump surrogate, Chris Christie, told Fox News on Sunday, discussing the Times’s report. “This is actually a very, very good story for Donald Trump.”

    No, it’s not.

    The $900 million in loan guarantees reflected in the 1995 return expose decision-making so poor, it almost forced Trump into personal bankruptcy. His bankers’ forgiveness and loans from his father’s estate helped him escape that fate, but his fumbling ultimately led to years of corporate bankruptcies, job losses and investors getting pummeled.

    But Trump isn’t that financially sophisticated. In my interviews with him, he had trouble explaining such basic real estate concepts as “cash flow.” And in the present campaign, he has dropped alarming howlers about how he might manage federal finances as president. His eyes tend to glaze over when complex numbers come into play….

    Trump’s accountants probably used losses on the sale or write-down of assets that Trump purchased with the $900 million in loans to help generate the enormous business loss reported on his 1995 tax return. Whatever minimal financial dexterity and tax savvy is reflected in those moves is theirs, not Trump’s.

    In addition to making the “genius” argument, Giuliani said that Trump had a “fiduciary obligation” to his bankers and others to take the $916 million write-down. But by 1995, Trump’s beleaguered bankers were already well on their way to separating themselves from him for good. They would have had no interest in how Trump handled his personal income taxes.

    It’s now been more than two decades since the 1995 return was filed. In that time, Trump has become an international celebrity and made his riches a fixture of his presidential campaign. But how much has his business operation really improved?

    Trump could answer that by releasing all his tax returns — which is maybe exactly why he hasn’t.

  48. says

    Hillary Clinton held a campaign rally in Ohio today. She criticized Trump’s business acumen and she used the 1995 tax return published by the New York Times to make several cogent point:

    […] “It doesn’t look like he paid a dime of federal income tax for almost two decades,” Clinton told an exuberant crowd in Toledo, […]

    “While millions of American families, including mine and yours, were working hard, paying our fair share it seems he was contributing nothing to our nation,” she continued. “Imagine that. Nothing for Pell grants to help kids go to college. Nothing for veterans. Nothing for our military.”

    Calling Trump a “category by himself” even within the “cowboy culture” of big business, Clinton ridiculed the real estate mogul for losing money in the lucrative casino industry and trying to frame his tax avoidance as the deft maneuvering of a savvy businessman.

    “What kind of genius loses a billion dollars in a single year?” […]

    “He’s taking corporate excess and making a business model out of it,” she continued. “He abuses his power and games the system and puts his own interests ahead of the country. It is Trump first and every one else last.” […]

    “Trump was taking from America with both hands and leaving the rest of us with the bill,” Clinton said of the tax report. “Now, he says he’s the one that could fix things but that’s like letting the fox guard the hen house, right?”

    Name-dropping Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Clinton used the tax return to contrast Trump’s approach to business with her campaign promise to create “an economy that works for everyone.”

    The former secretary of state called for paid family leave, a higher minimum wage, and, as Warren has championed, a sharper federal focus on consumer protection.

    […] Clinton also knocked Trump and his vice presidential pick, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R), for raising doubts about the bailout of the auto industry.

    “He would have let you twist,” she told the crowd.

    Talking Points Memo link

  49. says

    The vice presidential debate will take place tomorrow. Now is a good time for bad news to surface about Mike Pence. I hope Tim Kaine makes use of this.

    Actually, this is a re-surfacing of bad news we heard before, only now the U.S. court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit has confirmed that Pence is a bigoted doofus.

    […] Indiana governor Mike Pence’s [issued an] order forbidding state agencies from providing social services to Syrian refugees. Pence […] attempted to drive Syrian refugees out of his state in 2015 by issuing the order, and has boasted that his executive actions align neatly with Trump’s extreme anti-refugee stance. But an ideologically diverse panel of 7th Circuit judges concluded that Pence’s order was illegal and cannot be lawfully enforced, affirming an earlier injunction issued by a district court.

    In a short but searing majority opinion penned by Judge Richard Posner, the court concluded that Pence’s actions obviously contravene federal law. The Refugee Act of 1980 provides states with funds to assist refugees, money that Indiana gladly accepts. But a provision of the act bars any state from using these funds on the basis of nationality. Indiana explicitly declared that it wished to deprive Syrian refugees of social services […]

    Pence had earlier offered a lame excuse for his discrimination against Syrian refugees. I was glad to see the judge excoriate Pence for his bigotry and stupidity:

    Pence had argued that his order did not discriminate against Syrian refugees because of their nationality, but because he believes they pose a heightened safety risk to Indianans.

    Posner succinctly demolishes this sophistry with just a few sentences:

    That’s the equivalent of his saying (not that he does say) that he wants to forbid black people to settle in Indiana not because they’re black but because he’s afraid of them, and since race is therefore not his motive he isn’t discriminating. But that of course would be racial discrimination, just as his targeting Syrian refugees is discrimination on the basis of nationality.


  50. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    [piling on another metaphor]
    like, not discriminating against squirrels, love their bushy tails, just eliminating those bird seed raiders, all of them. Poison all the acorns in the yard just to be sure. Too bad if squirrels MIGHT(nota bene!! ) eat those acorns. Unintentional consequence. So not anti-squirrellist here. *wipes hand*

    Sophistry indeed [also “in deed”]

  51. says

    Ah, I see. So this is why Donald Trump said that Hillary Clinton is not, ” “loyal to Bill.” (Comment 21.) It’s another rightwing conspiracy theory. Of course it is.

    The totally-full-of-bullshit book, “The Clinton’s War on Women,” by truly bugnuts doofus Roger Stone (super special friend of Donald Trump), claims that Chelsea Clinton’s father is Webb Hubbell.

    According to the rightwing conspiracy theory, the Clintons are in a loveless marriage of convenience, and both wife and husband are evil adulterers who have sex with anyone but their spouses.

    Hillary supposedly had sex with Webb Hubbell, Vince Foster, Huma Abedin and a raft of other lesbian lovers according to the conspiracy theory dunderheads.

    How do these dunderheads explain that Chelsea Clinton’s face looks surprising like she is closely related to Bill? They claim that she had four plastic surgeries to make her look like Bill. No evidence is provided.

    Trump, apparently, uses Roger Stone’s book as a credible source. So, apparently, does Trump’s campaign team.

  52. says

    SC @76, “gargantuan” is right. Trump failed bigly.

    Writing for The New Yorker, Ryan LIzza summarized how Trump survived the gargantuan loss:

    […] The bankers made a fateful decision: they needed Trump, whose name was on everything he owned, to survive financially in order to maintain the value of his assets as they sold them off. In effect, despite Trump’s poor business decisions, his skills as a self-promoter saved him and allowed him to climb out of bankruptcy.

    Trump soon shifted the focus of his business ventures to full-time self-promotion. The 1995 tax documents are artifacts from a moment when Trump was about halfway between his old, failed career as a real-estate mogul and his newly emerging career as a brand that he licensed to properties around the world and as a personality that he monetized in TV deals, commercials, and get-rich-quick seminars.

    Thanks to the quirks of the U.S. tax code, the staggering losses of his failures in the early nineteen-nineties may have helped Trump avoid federal taxes through his late-nineties comeback, the springboard that launched him into politics.

    […] The bigger threat to him is that the scoop reminds the public that Trump is not a great businessman, but he is a great con man—and his latest mark is the American voter.

    Trump lost mostly other people’s money, but he got the tax write off.

  53. tomh says

    Another hit piece on the Clintons from NYT columnist Maureen Dowd, this time in an interview with Katie Couric, rehashing all the old scandals. “Feminism died a little bit” under Bill Clinton, she whines. Plenty of fodder for the Trump machine. What would be interesting would be to know just what is the source of the 30 year vendetta Dowd has waged against the Clintons.

  54. says

    Trump lost mostly other people’s money,…

    Here‘s a piece about the epic failure of Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts stock. It was published in July. Of 2015. Great oppo research, Republicans.

  55. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    may have helped Trump avoid federal taxes through his late-nineties comeback, the springboard that launched him into politics.

    Thanks, Bill Clinton!! POTUS is responsible for everything that happens during their tenure, donchano /s

  56. says

    From June of this year – “As its stock collapsed, Trump’s firm gave him huge bonuses and paid for his jet”:

    It was promoted as the chance of a lifetime: Mom-and-pop investors could buy shares in celebrity businessman Donald Trump’s first public company, Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts.

    Their investments were quickly depleted. The company known by Trump’s initials, DJT, crumbled into a penny stock and filed for bankruptcy after less than a decade, costing shareholders millions of dollars, even as other casino companies soared.

    In its short life, Trump the company greatly enriched Trump the businessman, paying to have his personal jet piloted and buying heaps of Trump-brand merchandise. Despite losing money every year under Trump’s leadership, the company paid Trump handsomely, including a $5 million bonus in the year the company’s stock plummeted 70 percent.

    “He had been pillaging the company all along,” said Pignatello, who joined shareholders in a lawsuit against Trump that has since been settled. “Even his business allies, they were all fair game. He has no qualms about screwing anybody. That’s what he does.”

    Trump’s bid for the White House relies heavily on his ability to sell himself as a master businessman, a standout performer in real estate and reality TV.

    But interviews with former shareholders and analysts as well as years of financial filings reveal a striking characteristic of his business record: Even when his endeavors failed and other people lost money, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee found a way to make money for himself, to market his Trump-branded products and to pay for his expensive lifestyle.

    Trump received more than $44 million in salary, bonuses and other compensation during his time at the company, filings show. He also benefited from tens of millions of dollars more in special deals, advisory fees and “service agreements” he negotiated with his company.

    Trump’s campaign did not make him available to respond to specific questions about the company, but in a recent Washington Post interview, Trump said he “made a lot of money in Atlantic City,” adding, “I make great deals for myself.”

    He expounded: “They say, ‘Why don’t you take the casinos public or something?’ You know, if you take them public, you make money on that. All I can say is I wasn’t representing the country. I wasn’t representing the banks. I wasn’t representing anybody but myself.”

    Corporate governance experts say it’s rare for executives of public companies to suggest that they haven’t been looking out for the shareholders who financed them.

    The company began advertising its public offering of stock in 1995, saying shareholders would benefit from “the widespread recognition of the ‘Trump’ name and its association with high quality amenities and first class service.”

    When it debuted that year on the New York Stock Exchange, Trump’s company raised $140 million from investors, at $14 a share, and said the money would go toward expanding the Plaza and developing a riverboat casino in Indiana.

    But much of that money went to pay off tens of millions of dollars in loans Trump had personally guaranteed, filings show….

    Trump also steered the company toward deals with the rest of the Trump-brand empire. Between 2006 and 2009, the company bought $1.7 million of Trump-brand merchandise, including $1.2 million of Trump Ice bottled water, the analysis shows.

    “If you’re chairman of the company, there have to be safeguards to avoid that kind of blatant self-dealing,” said Pignatello, who said he lost tens of thousands of dollars in the investment. “He was milking the company.”

    The company at times ran into trouble. In 1998, the U.S. Treasury fined one of the Trump casinos $477,000 for failing to file reports designed to help guard against money laundering. Trump did not comment then on the action. The company agreed last year to pay a $10 million civil penalty after regulators found that it had continued to violate the reporting and record-keeping requirements of the Bank Secrecy Act.

    I don’t think it’s a failure. It’s a success,” Trump said in 2004 about the bankruptcy. “The future looks very good.”

    Shareholders sued, saying in court filings that the “sweetheart deal” amounted to a “basket of goodies” for Trump. “Chairmen of public companies usually don’t celebrate when millions of dollars of shareholder equity are being wiped out,” attorneys wrote in a court filing that year. “Donald Trump apparently does.”

    Trump has said he had no regrets about the company’s performance. “Entrepreneurially speaking, not necessarily from the standpoint of running a company but from an entrepreneur’s standpoint, [the stock offering] was one of the great deals,” he told Fortune in 2004.

    The company, now called Trump Entertainment Resorts, never escaped its crippling debt and filed for bankruptcy twice more, in 2009 and 2014. Carl Icahn, the billionaire investor Trump has called a friend, took control of the public company this year.

  57. says

    Trump’s history over decades – his business ventures, his foundation, his presidential campaign – shows the same pattern throughout:

    – showing no respect for anyone he’s dealing with, including employees, contractors, partners, and investors
    – an unprecedented level of personal plunder and self-dealing
    – breaking laws and then breaking other laws to cover it up
    – corruption
    – lies and broken promises
    – an authoritarian style of “management” and strong-arm tactics
    – a failure to recognize things are going badly or to admit or learn from mistakes
    – claims of managerial skill combined with a lack of adequate knowledge and ability (often leading to blame-shifting)

    When he reads that snake song at rallies, he’s talking about himself.

  58. says

    This is a followup to comments 27 (SC) and 75. It’s also a followup of sorts to the comments upthread about Alicia Machado.

    Roger Stone upped his stupidity quotient by referring to Alicia Machado as a “Ho Bag.”

    ROGER STONE: I would have handled that debate somewhat differently. I thought he scored some points on trade and jobs particularly. He had his moments. I would have not gotten into a fight with this ho bag from Venezuela who is according to the records, filed with the county of Miami-Dade —

    FERNAND AMANDI (HOST): Wait a minute, Roger, Roger, Roger, Roger. Ho bag? Why ho bag? You have no issue when it comes to consensual sexual behavior.

    STONE: Well I’ve seen the porno film. I’ve seen the porno film, that’s why. You can go online and see it yourself.

    Media Matters link.

  59. says

    – breaking laws and then breaking other laws to cover it up

    Speaking of which, Trump’s campaign is presenting his not registering his foundation to solicit money as a clerical oversight, and the media is letting them get away with it by focusing on the simple fact of non-registration. But if you read the full notice of violation (linked to from the NY AG statement I linked to @ #61 above), you’ll notice that registered organizations have to submit “annual financial reports and annual audited financial statements.” The AG’s office is requiring them to submit all of the delinquent reports/statements within 15 days, and failure to do so “shall be deemed a continuing fraud upon the people of the state of New York.”

  60. says

    The AG’s Notice of Violation also states that “All forms must be properly certified, complete and accurate. Any person who swears falsely to any document required by Article 7-A of the Executive Law to be signed under penalties for perjury may be guilty of a crime under the New York Penal Code.”

  61. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Newsweek strikes again. Trump use Chinese steel and aluminum in his recent building projects.

    Plenty of blue-collar workers believe that, as president, Donald Trump would be ready to fight off U.S. trade adversaries and reinvigorate the country’s manufacturing industries through his commitment to the Rust Belt. What they likely don’t know is that Trump has been stiffing American steel workers on his own construction projects for years, choosing to deprive untold millions of dollars from four key electoral swing states and instead directing it to China—the country whose trade practices have helped decimate the once-powerful industrial center of the United States.
    A Newsweek investigation has found that in at least two of Trump’s last three construction projects, Trump opted to purchase his steel and aluminum from Chinese manufacturers rather than United States corporations based in states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin. In other instances, he abandoned steel altogether, instead choosing the far-less-expensive option of buying concrete from various companies, including some linked to the Luchese and Genovese crime families. Trump has never been accused of engaging in any wrongdoing for his business dealings with those companies, but it’s true that the Mafia has long controlled much of the concrete industry in New York.
    Throughout his campaign, Trump has maintained that some controversial decisions for his companies amounted to nothing more than taking actions that were good for business, and were therefore reflections of his financial acumen. But, with the exception of one business that collapsed into multiple bankruptcies, Trump does not operate a public company; he has no fiduciary obligation to shareholders to obtain the highest returns he can. His decisions to turn away from American producers were not driven by legal obligations to investors, but simply resulted in higher profits for himself and his family.

    This comes out as he was telling Pennsylvania steelworkers he would bring their jobs back from China.

  62. says

    NYT editorial:

    …If Mr. Trump wanted to defend his tax practices, he could simply release his returns. But it seems that even for Mr. Trump, paying no taxes would be a political embarrassment. It would show that the government bailed him out of his catastrophically bad business decisions. Legal or not, this is the kind of handout no ordinary citizen could hope to get no matter how dire the circumstance.

    During the first presidential debate, Mr. Trump called his tax avoidance “smart.” What he’s justifying is a tax code that allows the extremely wealthy to shift the burden to everybody else, especially working Americans whose taxes are withheld from their paychecks and who can’t shield most of their incomes from taxation.

    Incredibly, the Trump campaign argues that because he knows how to game the tax system he should be trusted to reform it. There is no evidence that he would improve tax policy, and plenty of evidence that he would confer even more tax advantages on himself.

    Mr. Trump has not proposed closing the real estate developers’ loophole. Instead, he would make the code more favorable for his interests by proposing to cut the rate for limited liability corporations and partnerships — the entities in which he holds his real estate assets — to just 15 percent from ordinary income rates….

    Every new revelation about Mr. Trump’s business career shows that he’s built his millionaire’s lifestyle on debt, tax avoidance and other people’s money. From bankrupt casinos to a so-called university, he milked them for all he could and left workers, students and taxpayers holding the bag.

  63. says

    McCay Coppins on Paul Ryan:

    …In the four months since he formally endorsed his party’s nominee for president, Ryan — the esteemed speaker of the House, the sterling guardian of conservatism, the intellectual leader of the Republican Party — has been reduced to a miserable Trump flunky sheepishly counting down the hours until the election is over. Each day he spends tethered to the Donald seems to bring some fresh humiliation; each role he inhabits in the entourage proves more undignified than the last. Adviser, apologist, hype man, scold — none brings redemption, or even reprieve. And so he trudges on toward November, a stench of sadness clinging to him as he goes.

    Sources close to Ryan said he endorsed Trump in June in hopes of gaining access to the candidate’s inner-circle and steering him away from his more destructive behavior. Ryan also believed he could convince Trump to infuse his platform with more orthodox conservative policy.

    Of course, neither initiative has been particularly successful — and along the way, Ryan has put himself in the deeply degrading position of having to respond to every outrage Trump committed on the campaign trail….

  64. says

    Rightwing kerfuffle as Michael Reagan, son of Ronald and not to be confused with Ron Jr., rescinds his endorsement of Trump and says that his father wouldn’t have supported Trump and that both his mother and Nancy Reagan would have voted for Hillary. This was primarily in response to Trump’s insinuations about Hillary not being loyal to Bill.

  65. says

    When I’m feeling overwhelmed by all of the information, it helps to remember that each new piece just reveals another aspect of Trump’s shittiness as a human being – as a businessman, candidate, boss, “philanthropist,” party member, sibling, husband, father, and citizen.

  66. says

    Michael Chertoff endorses Hillary Clinton:

    …Twenty years ago, Michael Chertoff was near the top of the Clintons’ enemy list. He was the lead Republican counsel on the Senate Whitewater Committee, one of the first of many congressional investigations into Hillary Clinton.

    Clinton later cast the only vote in the Senate against him when he was nominated in 2001 to head the Justice Department’s criminal division. She was also the lone no vote against Chertoff in 2003, when he was nominated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the third circuit.

    All of this, though, was before the Republican Party nominated Donald Trump as its presidential candidate. This has shaken the party of Reagan. Chertoff, a lifelong Republican, will now be voting for the Democrat in November.

    Over the weekend, Chertoff — the former secretary of Homeland Security — told me his decision came down to national security. “I realized we spent a huge amount of time in the ’90s on issues that were much less important than what was brewing in terms of terrorism,” he said. For Chertoff, Clinton “has good judgment and a strategic vision how to deal with the threats that face us.”

    Whitewater has not come up much in this election season. But it was the Benghazi of the 1990s….

    Chertoff says he made the decision to go public for Clinton after watching the debate last week. “Trump’s sense of loyalties are misplaced,” he said. “Some of our NATO allies sent troops overseas, at the same time he is defending Russia and trying to dismiss what is widely acknowledged to be Russian intrusions into the databases of our political parties and political figures.” Chertoff said this amounted to “making enemies of your friends and cozying up to your adversaries.”

    For Chertoff, it’s also a question of Trump’s impulse control. “This issue came up at the debate about Miss Universe,” he said. “Not only did he seem at the debate to lose his temper, but to get up at 3:30 a.m. and reach for your smartphone is to me a hysterical reaction. If you’re president, the button you reach for is not the Twitter button; it’s the nuclear button.”

    Chertoff’s relationship with Clinton began to heal after he was nominated to be the second secretary of Homeland Security, in 2005. Clinton voted for him that time. Chertoff said that while he was secretary, he found Clinton to be “clear-eyed and tough on national-security issues.”…

  67. says

    PutinLeaks event is a bust:

    The expectations were breathless.

    For weeks, backers of Republican nominee Donald Trump have hyped the tantalizing possibility that the anti-secrecy organization WikiLeaks was on the verge of publishing a set of documents that would doom Hillary Clinton’s chances in November.

    “@HillaryClinton is done,” longtime Trump associate Roger Stone tweeted Saturday. “#Wikileaks.”

    The announcement by WikiLeaks that it would host a major news conference Tuesday only seemed to confirm that the bombshell was ready to burst. The pro-Trump, anti-Clinton media world rippled with fevered speculation.

    But if an October surprise about the Democratic nominee really is coming, it will have to wait a little longer.

    Over the course of two hours Tuesday — with the world’s media and bleary-eyed Trump die-hards across the United States tuning in — Assange and other WikiLeaks officials railed against “neo-McCarthyist hysteria,” blasted the mainstream press, appealed for donations and plugged their books (“40 percent off!”).

    But what they didn’t do was provide any new information about Clinton — or about anything else, really.

    The much-vaunted news conference, as it turned out, was little more than an extended infomercial for WikiLeaks on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of its founding.

    Assange, whose group released a trove of hacked Democratic National Committee documents on the eve of the party’s convention this summer, breezily dismissed the idea that anyone should have expected any news at his news conference.

    But perhaps those waiting for an October surprise shouldn’t lose all hope just yet. Or at least, that was the message from Assange, who spoke via video link from the Ecuadoran embassy in London, where he’s been holed up for the past four years as Swedish authorities seek his extradition on sexual assault charges.

    He promised to reveal documents every week for the next 10. He said some will have a direct bearing on the U.S. election.

    “We think they’re significant,” he coyly informed his worldwide audience.

    But what will they reveal? And when will they come? Assange wouldn’t say.

  68. says

    “Trump Used Foundation Funds for 2016 Run, Filings Suggest”:

    …That check is one of at least several donations to suggest Trump used his private foundation, funded by outside donors, to launch and fuel his political ambitions. Such contributions, if they were made solely for Trump’s benefit, could violate federal self-dealing laws for private foundations.

    From 2011 through 2014, Trump harnessed his eponymous foundation to send at least $286,000 to influential conservative or policy groups, a RealClearPolitics review of the foundation’s tax filings found. In many cases, this flow of money corresponded to prime speaking slots or endorsements that aided Trump as he sought to recast himself as a plausible Republican candidate for president.

    Although sources familiar with the thinking behind the donations cautioned that Trump did not explicitly ask for favors in return for the money, they said the contributions were part of a deliberate effort by Trump to ingratiate himself with influential conservatives and brighten his political prospects.

    “He was politically active starting in 2011,” said one source with ties to Trump, and at that point he “started to make strategic donations.”

    The lion’s share of those donations came from Trump’s personal funds and went straight to political campaigns or parties. But others, in particular those directed to the nonprofit arms of conservative policy groups, originated with Trump’s foundation.

    “If he could do 501(c)(3) to 501(c)(3), he did it that way,” said the source, using the tax code designation for nonprofit organizations.

    But Trump has not donated to the foundation that bears his name since 2008, CNN reported last month, which means other donors bore the cost of his giving.

    The donations to groups that granted Trump plum speaking slots or otherwise promoted his political aspirations also might run afoul of self-dealing rules for private foundations, which prohibit a foundation’s leadership from using donor money for its own gain.

    “Getting the right to speak or access to networking events, that’s definitely starting to push into self-dealing, where you’re using the private foundation assets to benefit Mr. Trump,” said Rosemary Fei, a partner at the Adler & Colvin law firm in San Francisco, where she specializes in charity law.

    Multiple Trump campaign aides did not respond to requests for comment.

    Meanwhile, there are half a dozen other such examples of Trump having used his foundation to help curry or cement favor, the IRS 990 forms show.

    The Rev. Franklin Graham, president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, for example, might have seemed an unusual political ally for the brash mogul from New York — but in April 2011, Graham began to publicly express support for the celebrity businessman as Trump weighed a bid for president.

    “When I first saw that he was getting in, I thought, ‘Well, this has got to be a joke,’” Graham told ABC News at the time. “But the more you listen to him, the more you say to yourself, ‘You know, maybe the guy’s right.’”

    Sometime in 2012, Trump used his foundation to send $100,000 to Graham’s association — one of the largest donations the foundation would make to any group that year.

    But Trump’s most impactful donations might have been those to conservative groups that could offer him a platform from which to test his presidential message and garner media attention for it.

    In 2013, Trump took the stage at the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, outside of Washington, D.C., where he touted his business record, railed against President Obama’s policies, and declared: “We have to make America great again.”

    That same year, Trump used his foundation to donate $50,000 to the American Conservative Union Foundation, the nonprofit arm of the group that organizes CPAC and sets its program. He did not ask for a speaking slot in return, but he did not need to.

    But Trump’s greatest early political exposure might have come from Citizens United, a conservative political group whose president, David Bossie, met with Trump in 2011 about a potential presidential bid and remained a close ally. More recently, Bossie took leave from his group last month to join Trump’s campaign as deputy campaign manager.

    It might have helped that, in 2014, Trump’s foundation donated $100,000 to the Citizens United Foundation, by far its single largest donation to any group that year. RCP reached Bossie by phone Monday and offered him an opportunity to respond; Bossie said he would call back but did not and subsequently could not be reached for comment.

    The money, and other donations like it, could raise further questions about whether Trump used money from his foundation’s donors for his own benefit rather than for charity.

    “If what he talked about was promoting his candidacy or fundraising for his campaign, it is not only self-dealing but potentially involves the foundation in making a grant to support political activity,” said Fei. “That’s prohibited.”

  69. says

    “Federal Court Blocks Gov. Pence’s Attempt To Bar Syrian Refugees From Indiana”:

    A federal appeals court panel Monday blocked Indiana Gov. and Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence’s attempt to keep Syrian refugees out of Indiana.

    The court upheld a lower court judge in barring Pence from interfering with the distribution of federal funds to resettle Syrian refugees in his state. The appeals court panel said that federal law bars discrimination based on nationality.

    The three-judge panel that issued the ruling is an all-star group of conservative judges, including one of the judges on Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court nominees.

    In a unanimous opinion, the appeals court said Gov. Pence acted illegally in accepting federal money for refugee resettlement and then refusing to use that money to aid Syrian refugees.

    The panel rejected Pence’s argument that terrorists are posing as Syrian refugees to gain entry into the U.S., calling it a “nightmare speculation” based on no evidence. Indeed, the court said, the state presented no evidence that any Syrian refugee had been involved in a terrorist act in the U.S.

    The court added that resettlement of persecuted refugees is a federal responsibility under the 1980 Refugee Act, which authorizes the president to determine, on the basis of “humanitarian concerns or … the national interest,” how many refugees to admit each year….

    Writing for the court, Judge Richard Posner called Pence’s argument “the equivalent of his saying (not that he does say) that he wants to forbid black people to settle in Indiana not because they’re black but because he’s afraid of them, and since race is therefore not his motive, he isn’t discriminating.”

    Posner went on to add that “that of course would be racial discrimination, just as [Pence’s] targeting Syrian refugees is discrimination on the basis of nationality.”

    The panel’s ruling is the latest in a series of federal court decisions that have rejected similar attempts by other states to avoid Syrian refugee resettlements.

  70. says

    SC @97, yeah, that was my reaction as well.

    Trump said, in answer to a question about discussing Bill Clinton’s infidelities:

    I hope not, to be honest with you. I’d like to talk policy. I think policy is much more important so I hope I don’t discuss that. And we’ll see what happens. We’ll see how—levels of respect it’s called and we’ll see how we get treated.

    Sounds like a threat. Do exactly what I tell you to do, and treat me better than I treat you. If you do that, I might not hit you. No guarantees.

  71. says

    Graydon Carter at Vanity Fair“Donald Trump: The Ugly American*”:

    …It can reasonably be argued that the presidency of George W. Bush was an eight-year warm-up act for the final stage of a dumbed-down America: a Trump presidency. You can draw a relatively straight line from the Florida recount of 2000, which took Bush into office, right through to the shambolic Trump campaign. The election of Bush led to the invasion of Iraq, which led to the de-stabilization in the Middle East (Libya, Egypt, Syria), which led to the migrant crisis, which led to European nationalism, Brexit, and, at the tail end of all these disasters, Trump.

    He has touched—embraced!—every third rail in American politics. He has offended (and I apologize if I’ve left some group out): African-Americans, Native Americans, Mexicans, Jews, Muslims, war heroes—war heroes!—families of war heroes, the disabled, women, and babies. Babies! Through word or action, Trump has promoted gun violence, bigotry, ignorance, intolerance, lying, and just about everything else that can be wrong with a society. And yet he marches on, playing to a constituency that just doesn’t seem to care. The thing is, this ramshackle campaign, following a ramshackle business career, has exposed his flaws and failures to the world and, more importantly, to the people he will brush up against for the rest of his life. To them he is now officially a joke. I suspect he knows this. And if his thin skin on minor matters is any indication, he will be lashing out with even more vitriol. He is a mad jumble of a man, with a slapdash of a campaign and talking points dredged from the dark corners at the bottom of the Internet. I don’t think he will get to the White House, but just the fact that his carny act has gotten so far along the road will leave the path with a permanent orange stain. Trump, more than even the most craven politicians or entertainers, is a bottomless reservoir of need and desire for attention. He lives off crowd approval. And at a certain point that will dim, as it always does to people like him, and the cameras will turn to some other American novelty. When that attention wanes, he will be left with his press clippings, his dyed hair, his fake tan, and those tiny, tiny fingers.

  72. says

    Sounds like a threat. Do exactly what I tell you to do, and treat me better than I treat you. If you do that, I might not hit you. No guarantees.

    And if I do, it’s your fault for (ahem) provoking me by not treating me with what I deem sufficient respect. Then I’m not responsible and have no qualms because you deserve it. (Note that what set him off in the last debate was the simple fact that she was running negative political ads using his own words and quoting him onstage.)

  73. says

    SC @98, that Julian Assange commercial and self-promotion extravaganza reminds me of Trump’s event at the Old Post Office hotel in Washington D.C. Both Assange and Trump made pre-event promises that drew a lot of press attention, and then they flopped as newsworthy events.

    Suckering the press, engaging in outrageous hyperbole during the promise phase, and veering wildly into narcissistic self-promotion at the actual clown show … yes, both Trump and Assange did that. Those two guys seem to have a lot in common.

    InfoWars (Alex Jones) also promised that “the Clintons will be devastated.” Nope, not even a little bit.

    Also, Assange and his WikiLeaks cohorts spent quite a bit of time denouncing the mainstream press, asking for donations, and selling their books at 40% off.

    Clown show.

  74. says

    Joy reid explains The Donald:

    So basically, Donald Trump is only a billionaire because as an inheritance millionaire, he could convince banks to lend him huge sums of $..

    …which he promptly sunk into various boondoggles, invested poorly, aggrandized himself and lost much of it, while borrowing even more.

    Along the way, to paper over his dwindling cash flow (or just because that’s who he is) he stiffed contractors and workers, refusing to pay.

    Then as the house of cards kept collapsing, he took several government bailouts and milked the real estate developer gimmes in the tax code.

    When the banks finally came for him he sold off what he could, turned his Palm Beach mansion into a bording house… er… “private club…”

    And lastly, he patched it all together by selling his name to […] developers based on the lie that he was a successful businessman.

    And then got a job on a TV show, based on that same fiction. It’s like those guys who write a “how to get rich book” and are only then rich.

    He’s like a human pyramid scheme!

  75. says

    Donald Trump also cheated when it came to paying state sales tax. Does this tactic make him “smart”? Does it make him a “genius”?

    […] Trump would go into the store with his wife, his girlfriend, his…whatever (to use his vernacular). He would then buy her an expensive necklace or wristwatch. Normally, such a transaction would face the New York city and state sales tax, which would be pretty high on luxury jewelry.

    In an illegal attempt to evade the tax, Trump “asked” the store to instead ship the jewelry to an out of state location, where no New York sales tax could be collected. In fact, the store would merely send an empty jewelry box to the location, while Trump and his lady friends walked out the door with the jewelry that very day. […]

    Forbes link

  76. says

    Ann Coulter is blaming atheists for the existence “Never Trump” conservatives.

    Ann Coulter joined conservative radio host Eric Metaxas, a fellow Donald Trump fan, on his radio program yesterday, where the two criticized Never Trump conservatives such as Thomas Sowell, Erick Erickson, George Will and Charles Murray and warned that America will collapse if Trump doesn’t win the upcoming election.

    Coulter said that Will and Murray may have refused to get behind Trump because they are atheists who care about the opinions of others rather than God’s opinion.

    “They are both atheists,” she said. “I guess status matters. As I always say, the reason status doesn’t matter to Christians is we’re looking up. If you have nothing to look up to, if you’re not getting your standard from God, then you have to look around. It’s either lateral or horizontal or vertical. You’re looking around and it matters to you—the opinion of other people.” […]

    Right Wing Watch link

    The two doofuses, Coulter and Metaxas, went on to include “elitists” in their blame game.

    It blows my irony meter, but I have to reiterate that Coulter is inferring that, in God’s opinion, Trump is the man for the job. God has lowered his standards, and/or God has been reading Breitbart and listening to InfoWars.

  77. says

    There are plenty of signs that Rush Limbaugh thinks Hillary Clinton is going to be president. For one thing, Limbaugh has started to campaign against Republican politicians who say they can work with Clinton:

    And the headline here, “GOP Senators: We could work with Hillary Clinton.” And that’s exactly why nobody wants you to be elected. Story about Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia predicting that congressional Republicans will be more willing to work with Hillary Clinton than they have been with President Obama. For crying out loud, these people. You know what folks, these Republicans are so self-defeating that they deserve to lose these elections that they lose. What possible, what possible advantage or gain is there in to being quoted, “Oh yeah, we could work with Hillary Clinton?”


    Conservatives are threatening Republican politicians who say they can work with the elected president. Where have we seen that before?

    Looks like moderate Republicans may lose some votes if they are not deemed to be pure in their obstructionist goals.

  78. says

    Michael Tomasky bothered to wade through three decades of myths about “crooked Hillary,” disproving and/or putting into perspective all of the harassment, lies, and exaggerations that were promoted by rightwing political hitmen.

    It’s a long article, by necessity, and worth reading. I will post an excerpt to give you a taste of the Tomasky’s approach:

    So once again, Julian Assange places his hand near the plunger, threatening to detonate more anti-Hillary dynamite. Fair enough. If he has something real, whatever we think of him and his methods, it will have to be grappled with. But before he starts in, let’s put the topic of New Clinton Revelations in the context they deserve—a context everyone forgets the instant a titillating email or tape emerges, like the tape from this past weekend in which Clinton supposedly demeaned Bernie Sanders’s supporters but in fact did the opposite (as Sanders himself agreed). […]

    The big bear in those days [1992-1998] was Whitewater. I don’t have space here to do chapter and verse, but: nothing happened. They invested around $45,000 in a land-development deal and lost almost all of it. There were a lot of facts that, strung together in the right way, could be made to look fishy. But neither Clinton did anything wrong. No proof ever emerged anywhere that Bill told regulators to look the other way, or that Hillary hid her billing records. It was investigated to death, for years, both by Congress and by a prosecutor, Ken Starr, who wanted to put them—and, perhaps, especially her—in prison. Another investigation, conducted by a government-appointed law firm and led in party by a Republican former U.S. attorney, found no evidence of wrongdoing. That was December 1995. It was barely mentioned in the press. Starr’s investigation dragged on for three more years. […]

    […] Jerry Falwell backed a film in 1994, The Clinton Chronicles, alleging that the Clintons had people murdered. A web site devoted to the Clintons’ supposed body count still exists, though I won’t do it the honor of linking to it. Actually, there seem to be three. And they’re still adding bodies.

    And don’t forget the books! […]The m.o. is always the same: rip a few quotes out of context; take material from other sources that is totally unsubstantiated but has appeared “in print” and can therefore be cited in sober-looking footnotes; mix, to produce the finish portrait of a scheming, lying, ambitious, unpatriotic harridan.

  79. says

    The vice presidential debate begins in about six hours.

    Some differences between Mike Pence and Trump:
    – Pence supported NAFTA
    – he voted for the Iraq war
    – he backed the TPP
    – he was against Trump’s Muslim ban
    – he praised the Khan family
    – he condemned Russia’s computer hack
    – he doesn’t say things like “bomb the shit out of them”
    – he does not talk about sex tapes
    – he released his tax returns
    – he is more far right that Paul Ryan
    – he is anti-LGBT in a public and policy way

    In some instances, I’m not sure if Pence and Trump differ:
    – Pence does not believe in evolutionary biology
    – Pence supports “conversation therapy” for gay people
    – Pence still believes Iraq had weapons of mass destruction
    – Pence wants to privatize Social Security
    – Pence accused Disney of embedding political propaganda in animated films

    The lists above are summarized from an article by Steve Benen.

  80. says

    Sorry for the partial repetition in comment 113. I should have refreshed the page before posting.

    In other news, Michelle Obama just set another trap for The Donald, and she mocked Trump for all his post-debate whining about a bad microphone.

    I’ve watched her, when she gets knocked down. She doesn’t complain. She doesn’t cry foul [taps mic]. No, she gets right back up.

    Let’s see if Trump decides to diss Michelle Obama. I mean, he needs to hit back, right?

  81. says

    Steve Benen talks about the far-right extremism of Mike Pence.


    Let’s put this another way: during his congressional career, Pence wasn’t just more conservative than Paul Ryan. His voting record also put him to the right of Michele Bachmann, Todd Akin, Steve King, and even Louie Gohmert. That’s not an exaggeration. Bachmann, Akin, King, and Gohmert all had voting records less extreme than Mike Pence.

    More about Pence and his crusade against reproductive rights.

  82. says

    In other news, Michelle Obama just set another trap for The Donald, and she mocked Trump for all his post-debate whining about a bad microphone.

    Watched a few times for the sheer pleasure of it.

  83. says

    Trump’s spin on the near-billion-dollar loss that appears on his 1995 tax return:

    Donald Trump on Monday sought to turn an October surprise to his advantage, spinning his recently uncovered tax returns and losses in the 1990s as an American comeback story that could be writ large for the country.

    Responding on the trail for the first time to a New York Times report on his leaked 1995 tax returns, Trump made the case for his loss of $916 million as the cost of doing business in a period of economic downturn and painted himself as an all but written off businessman who came back to win against all odds […].

    NBC News link, article by Ali Vitali.

    Okay, let the debunking begin. The 1990s downturn cannot be compared, as Trump did, to the Great Depression. He said, “If you remember the early ’90s, other than I would say 1928, there was nothing even close.” He also characterized the early 1990s as “an economic depression.”

    Facts: It might have felt that way in the 1990s for the bumbling and incompetent Trump, but, in reality the Great Recession that began in 2007 was far worse. In the early 1990s, 1.6 million jobs were lost. In the Great Recession, 8.7 million jobs were lost (4 times as much loss when looked at as a proportion of the job force). Also, the Great Recession was longer; 18 months as opposed to the downturn of about 9 months in the early 1990s.

    More Facts: All around the failing and flailing Trump, other casinos were seeing their gaming revenues rise every year in throughout the 1990s. Trump overbuilt, and he sold junk bonds at 14% interest. One of Trump’s defaults, on the Trump Castle, occurred in June 1990, about a month before the downturn began. Trump fucked up, and there’s no way around that.

    Trump said, “I have a fiduciary responsibility to pay no more tax than is legally required like anybody else.”


    Corporate executives have justified tax avoidance by citing their fiduciary duty for years, but Trump’s use of the term might be the most creative misapplication of the term yet. A fiduciary, by definition and by law, is a person who must act in the best interest of another party. It’s the highest possible legal standard of care for another person’s finances.

    Public company executives have thrown around the term loosely in recent years, arguing that they are obligated to maximize shareholder profits however possible. Trump’s statement goes even further, saying he has a fiduciary responsibility to himself.

    Other presidential candidates, including Mitt Romney in 2012, intentionally opted not to take certain tax deductions, meaning they ended up paying more than necessary in the strict legal sense. Trump might not want to pay taxes. He might not even have to. But he certainly has no fiduciary responsibility to minimize his personal tax burden.

    AP News Fact-Check link

  84. says

    More fact-checking of Trump’s ridiculous spinning of his near-billion-dollar loss in the 1990s:

    Trump said, “Some of the biggest and strongest people and companies went absolutely bankrupt, which I never did. By the way, are you proud of me? Would have loved to use that card, but I just didn’t want to do it.”

    OMG. What a load of bullshit. Facts: Trump did use that card. He declared bankruptcy, he just avoided declaring personal bankruptcy. For his companies, he filed for Chapter 11 protection six times between 1991 and 2009. He has admitted to four of those. I don’t know why he always leaves out two of the Chapter 11 filings.

  85. says

    “Morning Joe” is generally intolerable, but this morning I flew at the remote control to shut it off as quickly as possible as my blood pressure skyrocketed. I’m pleased someone else noticed how especially it was today, and has written up an insightful analysis. (And they don’t even talk about the preceding discussion of polls that for the second day in a row completely misrepresented the number of new polls and what they show.)

  86. says

    Trump said, “I have a fiduciary responsibility to pay no more tax than is legally required like anybody else.”

    And that’s what makes the story I linked to and quoted from above @ #81 so relevant. After 1995, when the company went public and he did have a fiduciary responsibility to others, he completely screwed over all the shareholders and stakeholders, plundering the company, using investors’ money to pay off his previous debts, and pretending all was well while he drove it into bankruptcy and wiped people out. It wasn’t fiduciary irresponsibility – it was fiduciary anti-responsibility. And he was proud of it.

  87. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump is considered “unpatriotic” for his failure to pay income taxes in a poll.

    Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump says paying no income tax would make him “smart.” While nearly half of Americans agree with him, more people think it is “selfish,” and “unpatriotic,” according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Tuesday.
    Some 67 percent of Americans said it is “selfish” for a presidential candidate to pay no taxes, while 61 percent said it is “unpatriotic,” according to the poll, which allowed respondents to pick more than one adjective to describe paying no taxes.
    At the same time, the results showed some respect for a candidate who can figure out how to reduce their tax bill. Some 46 percent of Americans, including 35 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of Republicans, thought a presidential candidate who pays no taxes is “smart.”

  88. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    The scary thing about watching the VP debate is that it occurs to me that if Mike Pence were the presidential candidate, he would probably win.

    I guess the silver lining is that by hitching his trailer to Trump, he’s destroying his future in the GOP. But the smarmy asshole scares me much more than Trump.

  89. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    I guess I’m the only incidental fact-checker, objecting to Pence repeatedly saying the current economy is “struggling” due to Obama/Clinton taxation policies. When the facts, as I currently understand, say that the economy is currently recovering from the Bush abyss, showing a steady long-term growth of at least 3% per year.

    Pence simply asserts that undocumented immigrants are flooding the work force, driving wages downward into poverty levels. While not mentioning the possible contradiction that Clinton is arguing for increasing the minimum wage to be higher than poverty level. Why didn’t he ever mention that as a possible contradiction and how will Clinton/Kaine resolve it?
    Pence spent the entire “table discussion” chuckling when Kaine quoted Drumph. To which Pence would just under-breath “didn’t say _that_”. And this scores him points for being more polite than Kaine? And Kaine lost for interrupting, to make valid points and not just stupid denials?

    We are FUCKED.

  90. says

    Mike Pence was slick and smooth, and didn’t mind lying. Dangerous.

    Nobody will care about the lies, nor how Pence defended Trump by saying that Trump didn’t say what Trump said. People will care that Pence looked good and sounded good, while Kaine looked and sounded like he was wound too tight.

  91. says

    Here’s a Pence lie: He said that the Clinton Foundation only spends 10% of the funds it takes in on programs. The actual amount is 90%.

    Pence repeated a lie told earlier by Reince Priebus.
    PolitiFact link. Priebus told that lie because he is stupid. He had real information in front of him, but he misread it and misinterpreted it. Pence should know better.

  92. KG says

    It blows my irony meter, but I have to reiterate that Coulter is inferring that, in God’s opinion, Trump is the man for the job. God has lowered his standards, and/or God has been reading Breitbart and listening to InfoWars. – Lynna, OM@107

    An alternative explanation: God is bored, wants this whole humanity thing to be over, or his mum has called him down for supper, but he feels it would be unsatisfying just to press the “Game Over” button himself…

  93. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The tax attorney who prepared Trump’s 1995 taxes says Trump is no tax expert.

    An attorney who oversaw Donald Trump’s income tax returns in the mid-1990s said the Republican presidential candidate had little interest in the tax code — contrasting with the billionaire’s claim that he understood taxes “better than anyone” who had run for the White House.

    “As far as I know, and that only goes through late ’96, he didn’t understand the code,” said Jack Mitnick, a former tax adviser for Trump, in an interview with NBC’s TODAY. “Nor would he have had the time and the patience to learn the provisions. That’s a lifetime of experience.”

  94. says

    As I said above @ #9, Bill Weld should withdraw from the race for the good of the country. His running mate is plainly unqualified for the presidency, and Weld recognizes the unique danger of Donald Trump.

    The Libertarian vice presidential candidate, William F. Weld, said Tuesday that he plans to focus exclusively on blasting Donald Trump over the next five weeks, a strategic pivot aimed at denying Trump the White House and giving himself a key role in helping to rebuild the GOP.

    If this is really his aim, by far the best way to accomplish it is to withdraw from the race and join with the anti-Trump Republicans (as a Libertarian or not – it doesn’t matter at the moment). He’s not advancing either goal by remaining on the ballot on a minor-party ticket. I believe he’s genuinely fond of Johnson and that he’s made a commitment, but he needs to explain to Johnson that the stakes are just too high.

  95. says

    The article by Frank Bruni is good. (See tomh’s comment 129.)

    Here is an excerpt from another good analysis of the lies Pence told and how he told them:

    […] On nuclear proliferation, for example, Kaine noted that Trump has endorsed more nations getting nuclear weapons. “He never said that, senator,” Pence replied. Pence was wrong; Trump did say that.

    On Social Security, Kaine noted that Trump has called the system a “Ponzi scheme” he’d like to see privatized. “All Donald Trump and I have said about Social Security is we’re going to meet our obligations to our seniors,” Pence replied. “That’s it.” That’s not it; Kaine was right and Pence was wrong.

    This continued for more than 90 minutes. On abortion, Pence pretended Trump hadn’t endorsed “punishing” women. On tax returns, Pence pretended Trump hadn’t broken his promise to disclose the materials. On Russia, Pence pretended Trump hadn’t praised the Russian autocrat’s “leadership.” On immigration, Pence pretended Trump didn’t call for a new “deportation force” to remove undocumented immigrants already in the United States.

    I kept waiting for Kaine to turn to his rival and ask, “Have you ever actually met Donald Trump? Have you been paying any attention to the news over the last year and a half?” […]


  96. says

    Some accurate headlines:

    Chicago Tribune: Pence fights — and lies — to keep the stench of Trump off him

    New York Times: Mike Pence’s Fantasy Running Mate

    Washington Post: Mike Pence struggles to defend the indefensible

    Buzzfeed: Mike Pence Won The Debate For His Imaginary Running Mate, Mitt Romney

    Politico: 6 things Trump definitely said that Pence claimed he didn’t

  97. says

    The debate moderator, Elaine Quijano did not do any fact-checking during the debate. Because of that, Mike Pence was free to lie over and over again.

    She let Pence disavow the true facts that Kaine presented. Pence just called them all “insults.”

    Moderators are supposed to also serve the public, to serve us. I don’t see that that happened during the vice presidential debate.

    It would have been hard-to-impossible to fact-check every lie, but she could have at least clarified some of Kaine’s comments by saying that video of Trump making those statements does exist.

    […] Quijano also missed several opportunities to correct Pence’s lies that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton supports aborting full-term babies (she doesn’t), is responsible for withdrawing troops from Iraq in 2001 (she’s not), and wants to turn the Affordable Care Act into a single-payer system (not true).

    Journalists have repeatedly stressed the “obligation” moderators have to their audiences to fact-check candidates during debates, arguing that journalists selected to moderate a debate must distinguish reality from fiction by “asking tough follow-up questions” and adding “clarity if needed.” Research suggests that people who encounter fact-checked news feel more confident that they know what is fact than those contemplating unchecked “he-said-she-said” information. […]


  98. says

    We are likely to see more news that casts the Trump Foundation in a bad light:

    […] To make matters worse for the Trump Foundation, the probe may not be limited to New York: Charity experts and lawyers tell The Daily Beast that the attorneys general of other states may soon get involved in a long, drawn-out process.

    All major charities are required to register with 41 different states across the nation in order to individually request permission to fundraise. When Trump raised money for veterans, he may have broken the rules in dozens of states.

    This means that the New York attorney general’s cease and desist letter may be just the first such order in a cascade of other states opening investigations and ordering a halt to fundraising.

    “The Trump Foundation would be required to file similar paperwork with the attorneys generals of nearly every other state, and they could all take similar action,” said Aaron Dorfman, the president of the National Committee for Responsible Philanthropy. “It is likely that other states will follow suit and they will be issued cease and desist orders denying them fundraising privileges in other states. That is the most likely next step.” […]


  99. says

    Tim Kaine interrupted Mike Pence 72 times during the debate. Not good. Also, since when do we all seem to accept that Trump can interrupt Clinton (52 times) during a debate? Why are all these interruptions okay?

    The debaters can’t let their opponent speak for two uninterrupted minutes?

  100. says

    The debate moderator set up a false equivalence between the Trump and the Clinton economic plans. She stated that both would increase the national debt.

    She did not say that Trump’s plan would increase the national debt by 26.5 times more than Clinton’s plan, though that is the conservative truth. Then Mike Pence went on to falsely claim that Clinton’ plan would explode the national debt and that Trump’s would not.

    Here’s an excerpt from Wonkette’s coverage of this aspect of the debate:

    Among the many things Mike Pence lied about in the Veep debate […] would be the effects of the Trump economic plan (whatever it is this week) and the Clinton policy, especially his repeated claims that Hillary Clinton would explode the national debt. So hey, stipulating first off that an unhealthy obsession with the debt is, from the get-go, right-wing driven bullshit that’s mostly used as an excuse to gut social spending (while military spending is always good for the economy), let’s just take a quick look-see at how utterly Mike Pence is lying, shall we?

    Trump’s debt over 10 years is 26.5 times bigger than Hillary Clinton’s, huh!

    […] We’ll even give Pence a great big advantage here by using estimates from the rightwing (but “nonpartisan”) Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), a budget-hawk group that’s the brainchild of former Nixon dude and billionaire Peter Peterson, and has explicitly pushed for slashing Medicare and Social Security. […]

    Here’s their take on the Trump and Clinton economic plans:

    Incorporating rough and preliminary estimates of these new policies, we find that Clinton’s plans would increase the debt by $200 billion over a decade above current law levels (compared to our prior estimate of $250 billion), and Trump’s plans would increase the debt by $5.3 trillion (compared to our prior estimate of $11.5 trillion). As a result, debt would rise to above 86 percent of GDP under Clinton and 105 percent under Trump.

    Again, that’s the estimate from a crowd that’s obsessed with debt. They ain’t crazy about Clinton’s plan, because it leaves wasteful fripperies like Social Security and Medicare and the social safety net in place. But they really hate Trump’s plan, which would slash revenues while imagining economic growth would pay for the losses. If the CRFB isn’t buying it, that’s probably a pretty good indication that Pence is full of it.

    A Washington Post op-ed, also using estimates from the CRFB, made a similar point:

    Here’s the bottom line for the nation’s bottom line: Clinton’s spending increases and other proposals that cost money have a total price tag of about $1.8 trillion over the next decade. But her offsets, which come mostly from tax hikes, would save an estimated $1.9 trillion over that same period (or closer to $1.6 trillion if you don’t count those as-yet-unspecified business tax proposals).

    The net fiscal impact of her plans, then, is pretty close to zero.


  101. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    To the surprise of nobody with a working mind: Trump Lobbied for Tax Changes 25 Years Ago That Forgave Real Estate Losses

    Donald Trump has logged plenty of hours in front of television cameras, so at first glance, a Congressional subcommittee hearing from 1991 doesn’t seem like it would be much of a noteworthy performance in the reality-show-host-turned-presidential-candidate’s history.
    But the appearance in front of the House Task Force on Urgent Fiscal Issues, Trump’s first on C-Span, is striking for what it shows about his approach to taxes, his opinion of tax shelters and the dire warnings he pronounced about the fate of the country and its economy if Congress failed to act on his suggestions.
    Given the complexity of Trump’s corporate structures and the fragmentary nature of the tax returns obtained and published by the New York Times, tax law experts say that it’s hard to know just what comprises the overall $916 million loss reflected there, but it’s probable that some of it was due to changes in the tax code Trump himself had advocated for on the grounds of opening investment opportunities for average Americans and creating construction jobs to boost the economy out of recession.
    “The fact is that the one word that nobody up on the panel has mentioned is the word depression, and I truly feel that this country right now is in a depression. It is not a recession,” he said in his testimony, comments that sound similar to warnings he would make on the campaign trail 25 years later.
    “What’s most striking about that video is Trump has been the same for 25 years,” said Steve Rosenthal, senior fellow in the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center at the Urban Institute. “He’s been using the disaster shtick for 25 years.”
    Among other things, at issue was a provision in the Tax Reform Act of 1986 that discouraged investors from creating tax shelters by sinking their money into real estate.
    Worried about speculation that had created a building glut in major cities, leading to “see-through” office buildings devoid of tenants, lawmakers closed a loophole that limited the amount of losses a real estate investor could claim on their income taxes.
    Trump argued that this and related tax code changes in 1986 closed off investment opportunities for upper-middle class Americans like dentists and lawyers and left the real estate market starved for cash.
    He also objected to what he deemed a pejorative characterization of these investments.
    “Some very foolish people… heard the word tax shelter and they thought the word tax shelter was a bad thing as opposed to saying it’s an investment in real estate,” Trump told the task force. “The word tax shelter is like the word junk bond. It’s a very bad-sounding word even though it isn’t necessarily a bad thing.” …
    Similar to today, though, Trump claimed that the real unemployment rate was higher than the official rate reflected, and made his case that real estate could be the economy’s savior if the old tax provisions were brought back by spurring demand for construction.
    “If you look at what’s going to happen with the construction industry in the next few years, forget it. There’s not going to be anybody working,” he said.
    In response to a question from task force leader and New Jersey Democrat Frank Guarini about whether or not a reversal should be limited in scope to those in the real estate business, Trump pushed for a more full-scale rollback of the limitations.
    “I think it has to go beyond developers because we’re going to get a lot of the liquidity from people outside that are making money and can invest in real estate. Right now they can’t invest in real estate,” he said.
    “When the 1986 act wiped out the tax shelter, the price of the buildings fell,” said Michael Knoll, professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Reversing those limitations would boost the value of Trump’s real estate holdings, which could help him in two ways: It could help him get a better sale price, and could let him borrow larger amounts on better terms against them.
    In 1993, as part of a broader budget bill, Congress created carve-outs for real estate professionals to resume claiming a greater amount of losses than they had been able to since the 1986 law took effect. Some legal experts suggest it’s likely these changes helped out Trump by allowing him to rack up greater losses to offset income from other sources.
    On line 11 of his 1995 New York State tax return, Trump listed losses of nearly $16 million on “rental real estate, royalties, partnerships, S corporations, trusts, etc.”
    Given the scope of Trump’s businesses and what the Times called the “byzantine” web of interconnected holdings, “It is still difficult to know what is in line 11,” Taxpayers for Common Sense president Ryan Alexander said via email, but the 1993 tax code changes likely would have given him more latitude to claim losses.

    It’s all about helping Trump, fuck the rest of us.

  102. says

    Nerd @141, junk bonds are called junk bonds for a reason. Junk bonds are part of what brought on Trump’s near-billion-dollar loss in 1995.

    Also, I see documentation there that Trump even cheated when it came to his tax shelters:

    “When the 1986 act wiped out the tax shelter, the price of the buildings fell,” said Michael Knoll, professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Reversing those limitations would boost the value of Trump’s real estate holdings, which could help him in two ways: It could help him get a better sale price, and could let him borrow larger amounts on better terms against them.

  103. says

    Politifact rated Kaine’s statements during the debate as 79% True; while Pence got a rating of only 31% True.

    In other news, here is Video of Trump’s former accountant debunking trump’s claim that he “handled the tax code brilliantly.”

  104. says

    Other journalists are dissing Quijano’s job as moderator. Here is an excerpt from Isaac Chotiner’s take on Quijano:

    […] Quijano lost control of the debate early on, and never regained it. The candidates were told to speak for a set amount of time, and then discuss the issue at hand more freely with one another. Not only did both candidates, especially Kaine, keep interrupting the initial answers, but Quijano never allowed discussions to flow afterwards, which prevented any sort of productive, or telling, back-and-forth. Just as Kaine and Pence were really getting feisty about Trump’s tax returns, for instance, Quijano put a stop to it so she could ask something on social security. She had a list of questions to plow through, answers be damned.

    This occurred a couple of times when Kaine mentioned various despicable things Trump had said—whether about women and minorities, or an American judge from Indiana—and Quijano just flat-out changed the subject. Near the end of the debate, Kaine brought up the meta-subject of Pence’s refusal to answer for his running mate. “Six times tonight I have said to Gov. Pence, I can’t imagine how you can defend your running mate’s position on one issue after the next. In all six cases he’s refused to defend.” Pence’s response? “I’ll take them one at a time.” Then Quijano just merrily moved on to another topic. […]

  105. says

    Here is another lie that Pence told:

    Now, you all need to know out there, this is basic stuff. Foreign donors, and certainly foreign governments, cannot participate in the American political process. They cannot make financial contributions. But the Clintons figured out a way to create a foundation where foreign governments and foreign donors could donate millions of dollars.

    Nope. Not even close.

    No one in the Clinton family, not Hillary, not Bill, and not Chelsea makes any money from the Clinton Foundation. They work, but they do not get paid. Furthermore, unlike Trump Foundation, the books of the Clinton Foundation are open to the public. All incoming funds are accounted for, and all outgoing funds are accounted for.

    Organizations that vet charities say the Clinton Foundation does a great job, directing about 90% of the money taken in to its programs.

    Pence expanded on the lie:

    And then we found, thanks to the good work of the Associated Press, that more than half her private meetings when she was secretary of state were given to major donors of the Clinton Foundation.

    Here’s some backstory for the no-good, awful interpretations of the Clinton Foundation that are coming from the right-wingers.

    Back on August 23, the Associated Press put out a tweet saying that more than half of Hillary Clinton’s meetings as secretary of state were with people who had donated to the foundation. It was a lie. Then they followed up with an article in which they threw out over 97 percent of all the meetings Hillary had as SOS, and then if you looked at it just right, and if you counted people who worked for companies who had donated, and people who worked for foundations who had donated, but left out all these other people, you could get the numbers they wanted. So … it was still a lie. Not just a lie, but maliciously slanted journalism.

    Oh, and the AP said they had found 85 donors who had meetings with Clinton, but they wouldn’t release the list to the Clinton campaign so they could check it. In fact, they wouldn’t show it to anyone. They were still “cross referencing,” which they apparently didn’t bother with before running the story. And they still haven’t shown their list to anyone. Where’s the #$!#ing list, AP?

    Short version: The AP retracted their original tweet two weeks later and acknowledged that it had been wrong, but the Trump campaign is still pretending they didn’t notice. Foundation donors were a tiny fraction of the people Clinton met with while SOS. […]


    Pence summarized by conflating Hillary Clinton’s private server with false accusations about the Clinton Foundation:

    the reason the American people don’t trust Hillary Clinton is because they are looking at the pay to play politics that she operated with the Clinton Foundation through a private server…

    Is there evidence that, as Secretary of State, Clinton helped donors to the Clinton Foundation? No. There’s none, no evidence of “pay to play.”

  106. says

    Trump supporter, religious doofus, and a Republican nominee for the Kentucky House of Representatives, Bishop Dan Johnson says he is not racist.

    Those photos of Barack and Michelle Obama that he posted? Not racist at all, even though chimpanzee mouths were photoshopped onto their faces. It’s all a joke, dontcha know. Just entertainment.

    Baby chimpanzees were also featured as “Obama’s baby picture,” etc.

    We are not laughing, and even some Republicans are not laughing.

    The tone and content of your social media posts are inconsistent with the values of the Republican Party and have no place in the political arena. They demonstrate a total disrespect for a number of minority communities and your comments after the fact show either a lack of understanding or concern for how offensive this action is to respectable people of any race. [from Republican Party of Kentucky Chairman Mac Brown and House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover]


    Bishop Dan Johnson’s Facebook page also features Confederate flags, anti-Islam screeds, etc.

  107. says

    Trump is bloviating as only Trump can about the debate. The quotes below are from a speech Trump gave at a rally in Henderson, Nevada today:

    How many of you watched the vice presidential debate last night? Mike Pence did an incredible job, and I’m getting a lot of credit because that’s really my first so-called choice, that’s really my first hire, as we would say in Las Vegas.

    I’d argue that Mike had the single most decisive victory in the history of vice presidential debates. I believe that too. Last night America also got to look first hand at my judgment, and that was judgment.

    I’ll tell you, he’s a good one. He was cool, he was smart, he was—I mean, take a look at him. He was meant to be doing what he’s doing, and we are very very proud of Gov. Mike Pence. Thank you Mike Pence!

    Somebody said he won on style, but style doesn’t matter. The issues, the policy, matters, and he’s getting tremendous reviews from me and everybody.

    Trump is so pleased that at least one of the people he has “hired” turned out to be fairly good at his job.

    Conveniently, Trump did not mention that he had second thoughts about Pence during the V.P. selection process, that he was on the phone until midnight the night before the announcement asking aides if it was too late to back out of the Pence selection.

  108. says

    Latest from Eichenwald – “Donald Trump’s Tax Records: A Tale of Business Failures”:

    Five years of tax information from the 1970s that Donald Trump provided to the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety show mismanagement and losses that could have pushed him into personal bankruptcy—but for the largesse of his Dad.

    The recent report in The New York Times that a loss of almost $1 billion in 1995 may have allowed Donald Trump to avoid federal income taxes for almost 20 years set off attacks by Democrats and pushbacks by Republicans over his business acumen and ability to identify with Americans who pony up cash to the government every April 15.

    Given that deducting a loss against income in future tax years is both common and legal, Hillary Clinton and her allies have focused primarily on the almost incomprehensible financial thrashing Trump took in that year: The primary qualification offered by the Republican nominee for why he should be president is because of his success in business, and such a gargantuan flop showed he was a bumbler, not a successful entrepreneur.

    But the real estate developer and his supporters have flipped the argument: not only has Trump been open about the catastrophic consequences of his failed foray into the casino business that contributed mightily to the 1995 disaster, but he has written a book about it and even used it as a talking point in the opening scene of his reality television show, The Apprentice. “It wasn’t always so easy,’’ he said on the first episode of the show, broadcast in 2008. “About 13 years ago, I was seriously in trouble. I was billions of dollars in debt. But I fought back, and I won big league.” The point: Trump’s ability to recover from the 1995 financial wipeout showed he could accomplish anything in business, including recovering from a near-crippling setback, because of his skills.

    That would be an inspirational and potentially effective comeback if not for one problem: Trump flopped long before his casino bankruptcies, causing huge losses that wiped out his tax obligations. And the primary way he avoided bankruptcy those times was not through any personal skill, but because of an accident of birth—his wealthy father, who set him up in business, bailed Trump out.

    …Trump has steadfastly refused to release any tax returns on his own, but the headline numbers for the eight years of financial returns that have now been disclosed demonstrate that Trump’s self-celebrated business genius is a pose.

    The application came on almost the exact same day as the opening of the development Trump portrayed as his biggest success—the rebuilding of the Commodore Hotel in Midtown Manhattan into the Grand Hyatt New York. But Trump’s success in that deal—as well as every project that preceded it—came because he was born with a silver shovel in his mouth. His father, a major New York developer named Fred Trump, had personally guaranteed the construction loan from his banker at Chase Manhattan so that his son could do the project. Through that same banker, Fred Trump also arranged for Donald Trump to obtain a personal line of credit of $35 million at Chase Manhattan. In one more bit of evidence that the wealthy are not like you and me, the bank gave Trump the loan without even requiring a written agreement.

    But Trump was unable to control his spending. He loaded himself up with debt from the credit line in an apparent belief that he could make enough money through other deals and investments to cover the interest payments. This was the same logic that led him to assume billions of dollars in borrowings during the late 1980s for the casinos, the almost incomprehensible business decision that led to their bankruptcies that played out for more than a decade.

    No one could withstand these types of losses given the comparatively paltry amount of money available to offset them. So Trump took the same route he did for the rest of that decade and in decades to come: He borrowed more to keep himself afloat. Apparently, no bank would lend him additional amounts, so he turned to his father to rescue him…. All of the loans could be paid back at any time, and Donald Trump was not liable for any of the interest payments on them. Again, the rich are different.

    The bottom line—no pun intended—is this: Trump is not a self-made man. He is a self-made disaster who only avoided personal bankruptcy thanks to his father being there to clean up his messes. In other words, if Trump really was the businessman he pretends to be—an executive who made it on his own through sheer grit and determination, rather than through his family’s ability to bail him out—today he would not be the Republican nominee for president, but instead just another forgotten footnote in the annals of New York real estate development.

    I’m not sure how much is new – wasn’t included in the books by, for example, O’Brien and Johnston – but it’s more evidence against the “self-made man,” “business genius,” and “comeback kid” myths.

    …Actually, it might be new. I don’t remember reading much about the ’70s…

  109. says

    There’s none, no evidence of “pay to play.”

    Oh, yeah? What about the “Pay to Play” file? I mean, it’s right there on the file!

    (I actually have an elaborate conspiracy theory about how some recent events are Putin detaching people and operations because they’ve outlived their usefulness or because he’s recognized that helping someone as batshit as Trump get control of the US nuclear arsenal isn’t actually in his best interests….)

  110. says

    The Atlantic endorses Clinton – only the third presidential endorsement in its history:

    In October of 1860, James Russell Lowell, the founding editor of The Atlantic, warned in these pages about the perishability of the great American democratic experiment if citizens (at the time, white, male citizens) were to cease taking seriously their franchise:…

    One of the animating causes of this magazine at its founding, in 1857, was the abolition of slavery, and Lowell argued that the Republican Party, and the man who was its standard-bearer in 1860, represented the only reasonable pathway out of the existential crisis then facing the country. In his endorsement of Abraham Lincoln for president, Lowell wrote, on behalf of the magazine, “It is in a moral aversion to slavery as a great wrong that the chief strength of the Republican party lies.”…

    Perhaps because no subsequent candidate for the presidency was seen as Lincoln’s match, or perhaps because the stakes in ensuing elections were judged to be not quite so high as they were in 1860, it would be 104 years before The Atlantic would again make a presidential endorsement. In October of 1964, Edward Weeks, writing on behalf of the magazine, cited Lowell’s words before making an argument for the election of Lyndon B. Johnson….

    But The Atlantic’s endorsement of Johnson was focused less on his positive attributes than on the flaws of his opponent, Barry Goldwater, the junior senator from Arizona. …Goldwater’s limited capacity for prudence and reasonableness was what particularly worried The Atlantic….

    Today, our position is similar to the one in which The Atlantic’s editors found themselves in 1964. We are impressed by many of the qualities of the Democratic Party’s nominee for president, even as we are exasperated by others, but we are mainly concerned with the Republican Party’s nominee, Donald J. Trump, who might be the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American presidency.

    These concerns compel us, for the third time since the magazine’s founding, to endorse a candidate for president. Hillary Rodham Clinton has more than earned, through her service to the country as first lady, as a senator from New York, and as secretary of state, the right to be taken seriously as a White House contender. She has flaws (some legitimately troubling, some exaggerated by her opponents), but she is among the most prepared candidates ever to seek the presidency. We are confident that she understands the role of the United States in the world; we have no doubt that she will apply herself assiduously to the problems confronting this country; and she has demonstrated an aptitude for analysis and hard work.

    Donald Trump, on the other hand, has no record of public service and no qualifications for public office. His affect is that of an infomercial huckster; he traffics in conspiracy theories and racist invective; he is appallingly sexist; he is erratic, secretive, and xenophobic; he expresses admiration for authoritarian rulers, and evinces authoritarian tendencies himself. He is easily goaded, a poor quality for someone seeking control of America’s nuclear arsenal. He is an enemy of fact-based discourse; he is ignorant of, and indifferent to, the Constitution; he appears not to read.

    This judgment is not limited to the editors of The Atlantic. A large number—in fact, a number unparalleled since Goldwater’s 1964 campaign—of prominent policy makers and officeholders from the candidate’s own party have publicly renounced him. Trump disqualified himself from public service long before he declared his presidential candidacy….

    Our endorsement of Clinton, and rejection of Trump, is not a blanket dismissal of the many Trump supporters who are motivated by legitimate anxieties about their future and their place in the American economy. But Trump has seized on these anxieties and inflamed and racialized them, without proposing realistic policies to address them.

    In its founding statement, The Atlantic promised that it would be “the organ of no party or clique,” and our interest here is not to advance the prospects of the Democratic Party, nor to damage those of the Republican Party. If Hillary Clinton were facing Mitt Romney, or John McCain, or George W. Bush, or, for that matter, any of the leading candidates Trump vanquished in the Republican primaries, we would not have contemplated making this endorsement. We believe in American democracy, in which individuals from various parties of different ideological stripes can advance their ideas and compete for the affection of voters. But Trump is not a man of ideas. He is a demagogue, a xenophobe, a sexist, a know-nothing, and a liar. He is spectacularly unfit for office, and voters—the statesmen and thinkers of the ballot box—should act in defense of American democracy and elect his opponent.

  111. says

    Trump did an interview with a local station in Nevada (where he lectured locals on how to pronounce the name of their state, while mispronouncing it). It’s total blather. I’m furious that the public has to go through the motions of taking this clown seriously. On Yucca Mountain, he actually said: “Well, as you know, I’m very friendly with this area. In fact, I have big enterprises here. And especially my building and the hotel – Trump International. I will tell you – I’m gonna take a look at it because so many people are talking about it. I came into town and everyone is talking about it. So I will take a very strong look at it, and the next time you interview me, we’ll talk about it for five minutes. OK?” Pressed for further comment (the reporter suggested, I assume jokingly or as bait, putting nuclear waste under the border wall), he responded: “Well, I do – I mean, I have a – I have a very – number one, you have to worry about safety. And it’s a little bit close to a very major population base so I’m gonna take a very strong look at it and I will come very strongly one way or the other. I will have an opinion.”

    Truly, strength in action.

  112. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Regarding the pronunciation of Nevada, I agree with Trump. It’s a Spanish word, after all, and he’s giving the middle vowel its Spanish quality.

    Of course, the reason it has a Spanish name is that it was part of Mexico until the US’s war of conquest in the 1840s, a war which the man who would later become the first Republican President opposed. I realize that it’s far too late to return the lands we stole from Mexico, but I’m sure as a good Republican Trump would be open to providing some sort of compensation, perhaps in the form of opening the border to any Mexican who wants to look for work in the US.

  113. says

    I realize my previous comment might have given the impression that Trump’s second response was about a border-wall nuclear waste plan. It wasn’t. He was still talking about Yucca Mtn.

  114. says

    Regarding the pronunciation of Nevada, I agree with Trump. It’s a Spanish word, after all, and he’s giving the middle vowel its Spanish quality.

    But locals develop their own pronunciations that aren’t necessarily the same as the original/root language. Evidently (and I didn’t know this until I heard about the episode last night), that’s not how people there pronounce it.

  115. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    SC @ 159,

    Yeah, I know. I just find it ironic that Trump is insisting on the Spanish pronunciation, given the history and his attitude towards Mexicans.

  116. says

    About the pronunciation of Nevada, Trump was confidently and repetitively wrong. He even had people in the audience loudly and en masse correcting him. He just continued on the wrong path. You can put this mispronunciation in the unimportant category, but it is an example of how Trump operates, of how he approaches every subject: overly confident and ignorant.

    Trump is the emperor of failure (a phrase coined by journalist Mark Sumner). Some excerpts from Kurt Eichenwald’s latest article:

    It wasn’t just 1995. …

    All of the tax information that has been publicly revealed—The Washington Post published figures for 1978 and 1979 in May, Politico reported in June he had paid no taxes in 1991 and 1993, The New York Times published 1995 information last week and further information from the 1970s show the same thing: Trump paying little or no taxes because of poor financial performance and huge mistakes he made in his business. […]

    In 1978, the same year that Fred Trump set up the credit line for his son at Chase Manhattan, Trump’s personal finances collapsed. By then, he had borrowed $38 million from his line of credit—the bank adjusted the available amount up by $3 million when Trump exceeded his credit limit. […]

    Unsurprisingly, given Trump’s bad business decisions, Donald’s taxes for 1978 showed personal losses of $406,379—that’s $1.5 million in present-day dollars—according to the information filed to the casino regulator. […]

    Trump took the same route he did for the rest of that decade and in decades to come: He borrowed more to keep himself afloat. Apparently, no bank would lend him additional amounts, so he turned to his father to rescue him. On September 24, 1980, Fred Trump arranged for a series of loans totaling $7.5 million to his son, which Donald Trump used to pay down some of the debt on his personal credit line. […]

    The bottom line—no pun intended—is this: Trump is not a self-made man. He is a self-made disaster who only avoided personal bankruptcy thanks to his father being there to clean up his messes. […]

  117. says

    Josh Barro (on Chris Hayes’ “All In” show) explains Trump’s use of tax loopholes, and he brings up an interesting question: how and when did Trump earn enough money to have a loss of almost $1 billion dollars in 1995. He didn’t. And he seems to have claimed losses that were actually the banks’ losses.

    Furthermore, in a rally speech, Trump dissed Hillary Clinton for not fixing the tax code when she was a senator so that people like Trump could no longer cheat. Trump didn’t call what he did cheating, but you get the idea. Except that (oh, so delicious a moment of schadenfreude), Hillary Clinton did co-sponsor a bill that corrected that very loophole in the tax code. See the video for the full explanation.

  118. says

    I just find it ironic that Trump is insisting on the Spanish pronunciation, given the history and his attitude towards Mexicans.

    Ah – very true. Sorry for not initially reading your whole comment.

  119. says

    I meant to post about Barro’s article yesterday, but didn’t get around to it. He did a good job explaining it on Chris Hayes.

    “Here’s the best theory we’ve seen of how Trump paid so little tax”:

    At a rally Tuesday in Arizona, Donald Trump sought to blame Hillary Clinton for his own low tax bills. …

    Well, maybe Clinton didn’t just try to change laws Trump used, but actually got them changed, when she was in the Senate in 2002.

    According to a Tuesday column by Lee Sheppard in the tax industry publication Tax Notes, Trump may have benefited greatly in the 1990s from a tax loophole related to forgiven debts — a loophole that would have allowed him to deduct business losses on his personal income tax return, even if those losses were actually borne by banks that loaned Trump money and never got it back.

    This loophole was the subject of a 2001 Supreme Court case, Gitlitz v. Commissioner, in which the IRS argued the relevant tax law could not have possibly meant what it appeared to say, which was that business owners could in some cases deduct losses they had not actually borne.

    After the IRS lost that case, the loophole was closed by the Job Creation and Worker Assistance Act of 2002, a bill that then Sen. Hillary Clinton voted for and President George W. Bush signed. But that law only stopped taxpayers from using the loophole going forward; they were still allowed to benefit from tax losses they had booked through it in prior years, such as 1995.

    The Gitlitz loophole — the one Congress closed in 2002 — was related to the taxation of S Corporations.

    If that rule sounds stupid, that’s because it was stupid. The IRS sought to disallow such tax deductions since they were obviously contrary to the intent of the laws around S Corporations. But the Supreme Court ruled in 2001, by a majority of 8-1, that the letter of the law allowed investors to use this tax strategy even if it made no sense. The only way to close the loophole was to change the law.

    So in 2002, as a part of a broader, bipartisan package of business tax reforms, Congress did that. The new law ensured that if the cancellation of an S Corporation’s debt doesn’t count as taxable income, it can’t increase the shareholder’s basis in the S Corporation, creating additional headroom for the shareholder to deduct other losses he didn’t really bear.

    This package of reforms passed the Senate by a vote of 85 to 9. One of the senators voting in favor was Hillary Clinton.

    If Trump didn’t use the Gitlitz loophole, and he really did enjoy a bona-fide economic loss of nearly $1 billion, he could prove that by releasing his tax returns in their entirety.

    Until he does that, we can’t just assume Trump “used the tax code just the way it’s supposed to be used,” as his running mate Gov. Mike Pence claimed Tuesday night. After all, like the rest of us, Pence has not seen the entire tax returns he is purporting to bless.

  120. says

    Oh, dear. Tell me it ain’t so.

    As we’ve discussed often on the Moments of Political Madness thread, Republican governors, state legislators and attorneys general have been working hard to restrict voting rights for likely Democratic voting populations. The Department of Justice has been fighting back, as have other groups. The promising result was that state supreme courts have issued injunctions against most of the voter-restriction moves. (You may remember that Tim Kaine mentioned just such a court ruling against Mike Pence in Indiana.)

    Well, now we find out that the Republican weasels remain undaunted. They are finding ways around the court rulings. For example:

    […] After an appeals court ruling restored a week of early voting — in a monumental decision that said provisions of a 2013 North Carolina election law were passed with discriminatory intent — a handful of GOP-led county election boards sought to limit voting hours in the extra week to the bare minimum, apparently at the behest of a leaked memo sent by a state Republican Party official. Early voting is disproportionately popular among Democratic-leaning minorities.

    […] five counties are now the subject of an emergency motion filed last week by Marc Elias — a voting rights lawyer and counsel to the Clinton campaign — on the behalf of North Carolina voters objecting to their skimpy early voting schedules. […]

    “The trend that you’re definitely seeing is that although you may win in a court, so much of what actually matters to voters depends on implementation of a court victory,” said Jennifer Clark, counsel for the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program. […]

    Voting rights groups on Tuesday filed a motion, in the ongoing legal battle over Wisconsin’s voter ID requirement, questioning the state’s effort to provide non-ID holding voters a free ID card to vote in time for the election, as ordered previously by a federal judge. The filings come after reports that, at a number of local elections offices, administrators had told potential voters that they would not be able to obtain the free IDs in time. […]

    At the urging of the Department of Justice, a federal judge in Texas last month had to order state officials to re-write the educational materials explaining how their voter ID law — which was ruled discriminatory in its effect by a full appeals court — had been softened for non-ID holders. […]

    Kansas Secretary Kris Kobach, facing a contempt-of-court hearing, agreed last week to fix the implementation of multiple rulings blocking the state’s proof-of-citizenship requirement for voter registration. […] newly eligible voters were not being notified that they were now fully registered to vote, nor were their names coming up in the state’s online voting registration database. […]

    Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted is under fire for failing to send absentee ballots to more than a million of Ohio’s 7.7 million registered voters. Among those not receiving ballots were those voters whose registrations were restored after an appeals court blocked a purge of them from the rolls. […]


    Unfortunately, voters are going to have to work harder to comply with new rules, with restricted voting hours, with having been mysteriously removed from voting rolls, etc.

  121. says

    Coverage of pronunciation of “Nevada.”

    Not from the above video, but from the Trump video:

    “Ne-VAAAH-dah,” one video captures Trump telling the rally crowd, incorrectly.

    “No!” the crowd screams nearly in unison.

    “And you know what I said?,” Trump continues. “I said when I came out here, I said: Nobody says it the other way, it has to be Ne-VAH-da. And if you don’t say it correctly—”

    He pauses. Trump appears to think the crowd is mocking the subject of his anecdote, so he clarifies.

    “And it didn’t happen to me! It happened to a friend of mine,” he says. “And he was killed.”

  122. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Thirty former GOP congressmen come out against Trump.

    A group of 30 former Republican members of Congress have publicly come out against Donald Trump.
    It’s the largest group of former Republican elected officials to officially announce their opposition to the current leader of their party.
    “Sadly, our party’s nominee this year is a man who makes a mockery of the principles and values we have cherished and which we sought to represent in Congress,” the letters states.
    Some of the members had previously announced their displeasure with the candidate, including Rep. Tom Coleman of Missouri, but nearly half of the signatories are doing so for the first time.
    “At some point you have to put country over party,” said Coleman. “I think he’s dangerous. I think he is mentally and emotionally unfit to be president.”
    One of the signatories, Rep. Bill Clinger of Pennsylvania, oversaw the House Government and Oversight Reform Committee, which investigated former president Bill Clinton’s administration for Filegate and Travelgate.
    “The people in the Republican Party who are saying you need to fall in line, don’t try to persuade us. This guy has real personal problems and we don’t want somebody like him in office,” said former Rep. Mickey Edwards of Oklahoma.
    But will the members vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton? “I don’t know,” Coleman said.
    “It’s not about voting for somebody. We left it open for people to support Mrs. Clinton – that’s fine or they vote third party or some don’t want to vote at all,” he added.

    One of the signatories, John Porter, represented my district years ago. Both his successors, Mark Kirk (now senator) and Bob Dold, have disavowed Trump too.

  123. says

    Yesterday it looked like Trump realized, for a moment at least, that his past comments about women are hurting his chances of winning the election.

    “A lot of that was done for the purpose of entertainment,” the Republican nominee told Las Vegas’ KSNV-TV. “I can tell you this: There is nobody — nobody — that has more respect for women than I do.”

    “You know, you’re in the entertainment business. You’re doing ‘The Apprentice.’ You have one of the top shows on television. And you say things differently for a reason,” Trump said.


    “For entertainment” … that’s not a good excuse, you doofus.

  124. says

    Trump just added terminally ill people to the list of those he has insulted:

    “I don’t care how sick you are,” Trump said at a rally in Henderson, Nevada. “I don’t care if you just came back from the doctor and he gave you the worst possible prognosis, meaning it’s over, you won’t be around in two weeks. Doesn’t matter. Hang out till Nov. 8. Get out and vote.”

    Trump prefaced his comments by saying “I say kiddingly, but I mean it.”

  125. says

    An excerpt from Trump’s bankruptcy depositions in the early 1990s shows something interesting. His lawyers met with Trump in pairs because Trump was known to lie and they needed a backup. The lawyers tried to word it nicely, but you can tell what’s going on:

    Q: You had a meeting on June 16, 1990?

    A: Right. Same identical entry. Right. Okay. For three quarters of an hour with Donald, right.

    Q: Did Mr. Miller always do everything together with you when he was active in this case?

    A: Not everything, but we—it’s always been our practice to make sure two people are present, and we don’t have a problem of people lying.

    Q: You are meeting with your client?

    A: That’s right. Your client. Hey, Trump is a leader in the field of expert—he’s an expert at interpreting things. Let’s put it that way.

    Q: That’s interestingly put. As I recall in your letter to Mr. Descantis, which we marked yesterday, you indicated the policy of your office was to have two attorneys present for meeting with public officials?

    A: Correct.

    Q: Here you are meeting with your client?

    A: That’s right.

    Q: Was it necessary for both you and Mr. Miller to always attend the meeting —

    A: We always do that.

    Q: Always?

    A: We tried to do it with Donald always if we could because Donald says certain things and then has a lack of memory.

    Document Cloud link

  126. says

    What is it with male Republican politicians and the idea that babies are a “gift from God” even is the pregnancy is the result of rape? Remember Todd Akin, Richard Mourdock and others?

    Well now we get to add Colorado conservative, Darryl Glenn:

    If you want an abortion, don’t ask me to pay for it. That’s not something I’m gonna agree with. That’s a gift from God. There are no exceptions with that. But that doesn’t mean I’m not going to pray for you…. That’s a life, regardless of how it got there, and I’m going to pray for you.

    Colorado Springs Independent link

  127. says

    “We don’t have ‘two historically unpopular candidates’: What the media gets wrong about candidate popularity”:

    One of the more popular media memes of this election cycle is that we have “two historically unpopular candidates.” This meme simultaneously reflects the media’s obsession with “balance” (mistaking it for objectivity) and obscures how much Republican Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is a historical aberration, as well as the deeper problems that his candidacy embodies or symbolizes. In the cable news universe, no one invokes the meme more often than Trump supporters and surrogates.

    There are at least three main problems with this meme. First, it’s a recent snapshot view, which clearly reverses cause and effect. Running for president has severely eroded Hillary Clinton’s popularity, due to the combination of intense political polarization and partisanship. On the other hand, becoming first the Republican front-runner and then the nominee has elevated Trump, bringing him in early September to his highest-ever level of national popularity.

    Second, it ignores how popular Clinton was as secretary of state — much more popular than Vice President Joe Biden, her only “credible” competitor in elite circles at the time. Third, Clinton is not unpopular with nonwhite voters: African-Americans, Latinos and Asian-Americans all have favorable views of her, at least in broad strokes. The meme thus obscures the racialized nature of Trump’s and Clinton’s respective popularity problems.

    As a public servant before this election cycle, Hillary Clinton registered broad public approval. …Her popularity was both high and steady, especially compared with Obama’s sharp drop-off early in his first term as president, as he faced increasingly intransigent GOP opposition.

    Two months later, Business Insider ran a story headlined ”Republicans Secretly Think Hillary Clinton Will Crush Them In 2016″:…

    As the chart below shows, her popularity fell as a consequence of entering into the highly polarized process of a presidential campaign,* beginning just as these stories came out in early 2013. That was when the GOP began shifting the focus of its attacks against her — via multiple fruitless Benghazi investigations, for example — but that did not succeed in bringing her down into negative territory until mid-2015:…

    Clearly, Clinton was not unpopular four years ago. Indeed the Republican’s main task was to erode her popularity in advance, using every trick at their disposal. Simply calling her “unpopular” without that history naturalizes the label, as if it describes something inherent to her nature — which is exactly what her political foes have intended all along. But the chart above tells a very different story: She has taken on an unpopular role, and — contrary to the meme — any other politician in the same role would also almost certainly be seen now as “historically unpopular,” a point we can revisit below by comparing her with Biden.

    Now a word about Trump. In contrast to Clinton, Trump really is remarkably unpopular — not just now, after a relatively brief period of intense Democratic attacks, but from the very beginning of his campaign, as seen on HuffPost Pollster:…

    …Although pundits were universally mistaken to think Trump couldn’t win the Republican nomination, they were right to think he had a ceiling of sorts: The proportion of voters who approve of him has been dramatically smaller all along than what’s needed to win a national election.

    Which is why demonizing Clinton has been so central to Trump’s campaign strategy: If he can’t raise his ceiling, he has to lower Clinton’s floor. And the “two historically unpopular candidates” meme helps him do that, by creating a media-friendly false equivalency.

    It’s impossible to say for certain what would have happened if Biden had run. But there is nothing in the data to support the notion that he is inherently more popular than Clinton. He’s more popular now at the moment, when all the fire is focused on her, and he gets nothing but glowing, folksy tributes. But that’s not a realistic barometer of what he’d be like if he were in her shoes. In fact, Biden never had approval levels as high as Clinton’s, so he’d be at least as vulnerable to a severe downward trend.

    What about Sen. Bernie Sanders? Well, that’s another story — and that’s my point. A lot of what Clinton faces right now, beyond the onslaught of Republican attacks, reflects a widespread rejection of the political status quo. Sanders would not be vulnerable to that, but virtually any other Democratic candidate would be. Clinton’s lack of popularity on this score has nothing to do with being one of “two historically unpopular candidates.” It’s about loss of faith in the system as a whole, which is a subject the media wants to avoid with the “two historically unpopular candidates” meme.

    There’s another way that the “unpopular candidates” meme gets things wrong and that’s when it comes to race and ethnicity. As reported by Becky Hofstein Grady, a SurveyMonkey election tracking poll of more than 91,000 registered voters in August clearly showed that Clinton was not unpopular with nonwhite voters:…

    Clinton’s unfavorability is driven mostly by White voters: Black, Hispanic, and Asian voters all give her net positive ratings. Trump, on the other hand, does not get a net positive rating among any racial group, even Whites.

    In short, Clinton is only unpopular with whites, more unpopular than Trump by a good margin, in fact. So the meme is also a way of cloaking unacknowledged racial animus, a sentiment that Bill Clinton famously co-opted with his “Sister Souljah moment,” but that Hillary apparently can’t avoid.

    This brings us to a final point: Not only is it misleading to think of “popularity” without considering race; it’s also misleading to think of race alone….

    [In May] Clinton had higher approval ratings than Trump in 47 groups and Trump had higher approval ratings in just 13, while 2 were tied. What’s more, Clinton had a 50 percent approval or better among 14 different groups:…

    As for Trump, he had 50 percent approval or more in exactly zero demographic groups. His best showings were 49 percent among males over 50, households that included military veterans and white males. He had above 40 percent approval, Clinton’s overall average, with just four other groups.

    What all this means is that something more complicated is going on than the “two historically unpopular candidates” meme allows or prepares us to think about….

    * Gender is largely missing from this analysis.

  128. says

    In case anyone focusing on the Trump threat has lost sight of the agenda of the Republican Party as a whole…

    “Ryan plans to steamroll Democrats with budget tool”:

    If Donald Trump is elected president and Republicans hold onto Congress, House Speaker Paul Ryan is bluntly promising to ram a partisan agenda through Capitol Hill next year, with Obamacare repeal and trillion-dollar tax cuts likely at the top of the list. And Democrats would be utterly defenseless to stop them.

    Typically, party leaders offer at least the pretense of seeking bipartisanship when discussing their policy plans. But Ryan is saying frankly that Republicans would use budget reconciliation — a powerful procedural tool — to bypass Democrats entirely. It’s the same tool Republicans slammed Democrats for using to pass the 2010 health care law over their objections.

    While GOP leaders have made empty threats to use reconciliation to repeal Obamacare in the past, Ryan is making it clear that this time he plans to use it when it counts. And he would likely have support from a Trump White House. Larry Kudlow, an economic adviser to the GOP presidential nominee, said he is also strongly urging Trump to embrace reconciliation in order to pass sweeping tax cuts.

    “This is our plan for 2017,” Ryan said, waving a copy of his “Better Way” policy agenda. “Much of this you can do through budget reconciliation.”…

    …Republicans have already done a dry run on targeting Obamacare.

    The GOP-controlled Congress passed a reconciliation bill last year that would repeal key parts of the health law, including effectively eliminating the individual and employer mandates and scrapping the Medicaid expansion, insurance subsidies for consumers and the medical device and Cadillac taxes. The bill was promptly vetoed by President Barack Obama, but it would serve as a road map to Republicans in 2017. The reconciliation process relies heavily on precedent, so now opponents of Obamacare already know what can pass muster with the Senate parliamentarian. Notably, the bill also defunded Planned Parenthood for one year, in a sign of how expansive a reconciliation bill can be.

    Other pieces of Ryan’s “Better Way” policy agenda that could find their way into a reconciliation measure are controversial proposals to bring down the costs of Medicare and Medicaid or overhaul the food stamp program and housing assistance for low-income renters. Every line of the bill would face scrutiny from Democrats, but a skilled procedural tactician could overcome most parliamentary challenges.

    Republicans would also set about rewriting the tax code through budget reconciliation. Asked if the procedure would be a good way to implement GOP tax plans, Kudlow responded, “Not good, fabulous.” Speaking for himself and not the campaign, Kudlow said reconciliation was “the fastest way in our judgment to get necessary pro-growth tax reform.” He said he has been encouraging that path to Trump and his staff all year, and that they were considering it.

    Trump and House Republicans have proposed different tax plans, but they are largely in sync on major principles. Both would cut the top tax rate for individuals to 33 percent from the current 39.6 percent. The corporate rate would drop to 15 percent under Trump’s plan and 20 percent under the House GOP plan, from 35 percent today. Both plans also would drain federal coffers of several trillion dollars and give the biggest boost to the wealthy. By the end of the decade, the richest 1 percent would have accumulated 99.6 percent of the benefits of the House GOP plan, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.

    …Ryan’s office didn’t respond to a further request for comment, but he has been vocal about the need to get Trump in the White House to enact his agenda.

    “I’m tired of divided government. It doesn’t work very well,” Ryan said last week. “We’ve gotten some good things done. But the big things — poverty, the debt crisis, the economy, health care — these things are stuck in divided government, and that’s why we think a unified Republican government’s the way to go.”

  129. says

    The paranoid ranting I quoted above @ #172 was from a Trump “town hall” last night in New Hampshire. Sopan Deb has transcripts of more extended remarks, but here’s a description of the event:

    This was not the debate tune-up that jittery Republicans were hoping for.

    Only days before Donald Trump must face Hillary Clinton in a town-hall style presidential debate, the GOP nominee added just such an event in New Hampshire. It was seemingly a concession to anxious allies and advisers hoping he might hone his skills in what can be a difficult format even for the most dexterous of politicians.

    Trump had other plans. “They were saying this is practice for Sunday,” he told the crowd in speech before the so-called town-hall. “This isn’t practice. This has nothing to do with Sunday.”

    He wasn’t wrong.

    The format was nothing like what Trump will face in St Louis, when half the questions will be posed by uncommitted voters, and the candidates will have two minutes to respond to each question as Martha Raddatz of ABC and Anderson Cooper of CNN serve as moderators.

    On Thursday night, Howie Carr, a conservative radio host and Trump booster, played the role of moderator, and the crowd was hand-picked by his campaign. The audience didn’t even ask Trump their questions. Carr did so on their behalf. Before the event, Carr had said Trump would take 20 questions. He stayed for about a dozen.

    And while Sunday’s debate will stretch for 90 minutes without a bathroom break, Trump bolted from his town hall in Sandown after barely more than one-third of that time.

    Trump’s campaign did place a two-minute countdown clock in front of their candidate on Thursday. He repeatedly blew past that time limit anyway.

    “I said forget debate prep. I mean, give me a break,” Trump said at one point. “Do you really think that Hillary Clinton is debate-prepping for three or four days. Hillary Clinton is resting, okay?”

    Yet even without the duress of an opponent, independent moderators and anything but softball questions from supporters, Trump struggled to drive any type of cohesive message, either about himself as a change agent or Clinton’s shortcomings.

    Instead, he whacked at CNN’s John King, CNBC’s John Harwood, polling analyst Nate Silver and Republican Sen. Mark Kirk. He digressed about how Hispanics in Nevada would rather be called Latinos. He kept complaining about his microphone at the last debate.

    When Trump has held anything resembling a town hall — as he did earlier this week in northern Virginia — the moderator has typically been a supporter, in that case social conservative leader Tony Perkins, and the crowd is filled with supporters. Trump entered that event in Herndon to a standing ovation. In early September, he’d done a previous event billed as a town hall, and took questions from one of his advisers, retired Gen. Michael Flynn, in Virginia.

    It was more of the same on Thursday night in Trump’s last true chance at a dry-run ahead of a debate to be watched by tens of millions of people.

    “This has nothing to do with Sunday,” Trump insisted of his New Hampshire stop. “It’s like they make you into a child.”

    And so, after a little more than a half-hour of easy banter and questions (“When you become president can you assure us you will clean house?”), Carr wrapped up by hailing Trump as “the next president.”

    Then, he wished Trump luck in the next debate.

    When asked a question about a childhood memory, this was his answer.

  130. says

    New WaPo editorial – “How much damage could a President Trump do? We can only begin to imagine.”:

    A PRESIDENT TRUMP could alter the face of this country and its role in the world, in many cases with Congress and the courts having little power to check him. In a series of editorials over the past several days, we have described the vast reach of executive power in areas where Mr. Trump has made his intentions clear. He could, in fact, unilaterally order mass deportations, resume torturing detainees, undo the preservation of natural treasures and tear up long-standing trade agreements.

    But we should be clear: The scope of the damage a President Trump could do cannot be fully predicted or imagined. His candidacy forces us to confront the extent to which democracy depends on leaders adhering to a set of norms and traditions — civic virtues, to be old-fashioned about it. Mr. Trump has made clear his contempt for those virtues, norms and traditions: He despises the press, threatens his enemies, bullies the judiciary, disparages entire religions and nations, makes no distinction between his personal interest and the public good, hides information that should be revealed and routinely trades in falsehoods. Handed the immense powers of the presidency, what could such a man do? The honest answer: No one can be sure.

    Given Mr. Trump’s quickness to take offense and lack of impulse control, it is natural to focus on the most extreme possibilities; the president, after all, has authority to order everything from drone strikes to changes in U.S. surveillance policy to nuclear attack….

    But more prosaic powers also present grave dangers. U.S. prosecutors have enormous discretion to investigate, or not investigate, and Mr. Trump would appoint his attorney general and a raft of new U.S. attorneys….

    We don’t have to imagine how Mr. Trump would like to wield his powers once congenial officials were in place. He has repeatedly disparaged journalists as “moron,” “disgusting” and “absolute scum” while banning news organizations that offend him from his events and proposing to “open up” libel laws to sue journalists who write “negative” things about him. When he learned during primary season that a wealthy Chicago family was contributing to his opponent, he tweeted, “They better be careful, they have a lot to hide!” While many people remember Mr. Trump’s disparaging the Mexican heritage of the federal judge overseeing a Trump University fraud case, how many recall the implicit threat against him? “I’ll be seeing you in November,” Mr. Trump said in May.

    If Mr. Trump wanted to wield the IRS against that Chicago family; if he tried to use U.S. diplomats to help his hotel business in Russia or Azerbaijan; if he barred disfavored reporters from the White House; if he ignored a judge who told him, say, that immigrants had to be given hearings before being deported — what recourse would Americans have?

    Yes, Congress has the power to remove a president who ignores the law. But given the easy GOP capitulation to such an obviously unfit candidate, how far would Mr. Trump have to go for a likely Republican House to impeach him? How much damage would he have to do?

    We have faith, ultimately, in the integrity of the federal workforce, the resilience of the U.S. system and the essential fairness of the American people. But all three could be tested as never before by a Trump presidency. The nation should not subject itself to such a risk.

  131. says

    “Reclusive mega-donor fueling Donald Trump’s White House hopes”:

    In March, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was vehement: Super PACs are a “disaster” and “very corrupt.”

    With his opponent, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, gazing expressionlessly at him from the next podium during a Republican primary debate, Trump added, “Ted has super PACs, and you have to look at the people that are giving to those super PACs, number one. It’s very important to do that.”

    “There is total control of the candidates,” Trump continued. “I know it better than anybody that probably ever lived.”

    If he’s right, New York investor Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah, the very same mega-donors who propped up Cruz’s bid, are due for some scrutiny.

    In June, the Mercers threw their support — and super PAC — behind Trump’s bid, at a time few other mega-donors were doing so. And in August, reportedly acting on Rebekah Mercer’s suggestion, Trump hired and promoted a cadre of operatives closely connected to the Mercers, including two who had run the Mercers’ super PAC, to his campaign leadership team.

    Mercer’s largesse has largely gone to anti-establishment groups and insurgent candidates working to pull the Republican Party further to the right, rather than the business-backed organizations closely associated with the Republican establishment, adding to his reputation as an ideologically motivated giver.

    He has heavily funded ultra-conservative media outlets, like Breitbart News and Brent Bozell’s Media Research Center.

    His foundation gives to groups that question human involvement in climate change, such as the Heartland Institute think tank and others. He’s also backed the Citizens United Foundation and the Government Accountability Institute, organizations that have ardently pursued an anti-Hillary Clinton agenda.

    There are signs, however, that Mercer is also motivated by issues that affect him personally. At least twice, he has unleashed gushers of outside spending to derail the re-election of a lawmaker — one who backed a tax on hedge fund transactions, another who investigated his company’s tax strategies.

    Robert Mercer, 70, co-chief executive officer of hedge fund Renaissance Technologies, has emerged as the single most influential donor to Trump, the brash businessman whose political rise was propelled by his personal fortune.

    But Mercer’s greatest influence on Trump may not be via his cash but, rather, through key operatives who have leaped from the Mercers’ organization to lead Trump’s: campaign manager Kellyanne Conway, campaign CEO Steve Bannon and deputy campaign manager David Bossie.

    Conway’s association with Mercer and Trump has been profitable.

    The Mercer super PAC, Make America Number 1, reported paying Conway’s firm, the Polling Company, more than $950,000 during this election cycle, including roughly $247,000 in August, after she had left to work directly for the Trump campaign.

    Trump’s campaign, for its part, reported paying the Polling Company roughly $128,500 in August.

    Bossie is taking a leave from Citizens United while working with the campaign. The Citizens United Foundation received about $3.6 million in grants from the Mercer Family Foundation between 2012 and 2014, tax filings show.

    Bannon’s relationship with the Mercers has long been chalked up to Robert Mercer’s reported investment in Breitbart News, the conservative news site Bannon headed before taking a leave of absence to join the Trump campaign.

    Bossie has taken credit for introducing Bannon to Trump in 2011, when Trump was considering running for president during the 2012 election cycle and sought advice.

    And in a previously unreported transaction, Bannon Strategic Advisors received $300,000 from Bossie’s Citizens United Foundation in 2012, a fundraising fee apparently in exchange for bringing in a $2 million grant from the Mercers’ foundation.

    Mercer has made more direct investments in politics.

    Together with his wife, Diana, Robert Mercer directly contributed roughly $23 million to federal candidates and political committees during the 2016 election cycle through the end of August. That made the couple the top individual donors on the Republican side, according to federal campaign contribution data tracked by the Center for Responsive Politics.

    There’s potential for millions more: Robert Mercer earned $150 million last year, according to Forbes.

    Most of those who have received funding from the Mercers did not respond to repeated requests for comment or declined to speak on the record.

    But the Mercers have clearly built one of the most significant independent political infrastructures of the moment.

    In another statement, this one given to The Washington Post applauding Cruz’s endorsement, the Mercers made their feelings about the election — and the establishment — clear.

    “For the first time in many decades, American voters have the chance to turn their backs on the political elite,* an elite both Democrat and Republican, that has chosen as its leader Hillary Clinton, a dedicated foe of both the First and Second Amendments and the most dishonest, corrupt and incompetent politician ever to seek the American presidency,” the statement said.

    Their philosophy has led them to invest heavily in conservative media outlets.

    In addition to the reported private investment in Breitbart News, the conservative Media Research Center, a media watchdog run by longtime conservative activist Brent Bozell, received about $13.5 million in grants from the Mercer Family Foundation between 2008 and 2014, and Rebekah Mercer is a member of the group’s board, tax filings and annual reports show.

    Bozell leads a related nonprofit, ForAmerica, which describes its mission as “For freedom. For prosperity. For virtue.”

    In addition to fighting the left, ForAmerica also asserts conservatives are “under attack from the moderate wing of the Republican party” and “must be creative, better organized and better funded.”

    According to audited financial statements ForAmerica filed with New York state regulators, more than 90 percent of the $5.3 million the organization received in contributions in 2014 came from a single donor, but Bozell did not respond to questions about the donor’s identity.

    The Mercer Family Foundation has also backed multiple organizations that aggressively question whether humans contribute substantially to climate change.

    The Mercer Family Foundation’s contributions have repeatedly made up a major percentage of Heartland’s total contributions. In 2014, the Mercers gave the think tank $885,000, which amounted to 13 percent of the total amount it raised in contributions that year. Altogether, the Heartland Institute received nearly $5 million from the foundation between 2008 and 2014.

    A spokesman for the Heartland Institute did not respond to a request for comment on the Heartland Institute’s relationship with the Mercer family.

    Another group, the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, received a total of $800,000 in 2013 and 2014 grants from the Mercer foundation. Ron Arnold, the executive vice president of the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, is also a policy advisor to the Heartland Institute. He has been quoted as saying his goal is “to eradicate the environmental movement.”

    The money from the Mercer Family Foundation was nearly all of the money the group received in 2013, according to its tax filing — the group only reported receiving another $27,235 in contributions and grants that year.

    In June, when Mercer repurposed his super PAC, it was billed as a vehicle for donors who wanted to oppose Clinton but weren’t ready to back Trump.

    It would informally be known as the “Defeat Crooked Hillary PAC,” Bloomberg reported.

    It has been slow to attract other donors, though it did in August pull in a $1 million contribution from philanthropist Cherna Moskowitz and $50,000 from Erik Prince, the former head of private security firm Blackwater.

    It certainly won’t be the only Mercer-backed organization to focus on anti-Clinton efforts.

    Among the Mercer Family Foundation’s grantees: Bossie’s Citizens United and the Government Accountability Institute, both of which have steadfastly opposed her.

    Peter Schweizer — the author of the book Clinton Cash, which examines the sources of the Clintons’ wealth — is president of the Government Accountability Institute, which has received at least $2 million from the foundation….

    The film version of Schweizer’s work, also titled Clinton Cash, was in part financed by the Mercers.

    It was made by a video company that uses a California address also used by other Mercer-linked companies, including Breitbart News and Cambridge Analytica, as well as by Bannon’s company….

    * Take a moment and let that sink in.

  132. says

    SC @177, The Mercers, their Breitbart lackeys, and their other lackeys are working hard to select and elect a candidate that they can manipulate.

    In a way, they have already manipulated Trump. Trump actually uses books, websites and films the Mercer’s funded as legitimate sources. That’s where Trump gets his (bogus) information.

  133. says

    “Storm and Menace”:

    Jews are one of the most consistently Democratic voting groups in the country, going back many decades. The only comparable group, whose percentages of voting for Democrats greatly exceeds that of Jews, is African-Americans. But Jews’ propensity to vote for the Democratic party actually significantly predates that of African-Americans. Given this history, it’s not like Jews needed a lot of riveting. But I think – and polls back this up – that one of the less discussed aspects of the 2016 political cycle is how it has deeply intensified Jews’ collective attachment to the Democratic party, both in voting and political giving.

    I’m 47 years old. I was born in St Louis, Missouri but I grew up in Southern California and since I was 18 I’ve lived on the East Coast, as far north as Sommerville, Massachusetts and as far south as Washington, DC. I know a lot about anti-Semitism. It shapes a lot of my view of life. Of course I’ve seen instances of it. But in almost half a century of life it’s pretty hard for me to think of many or even any examples where I’ve witnessed or been the target of the menace of anti-Semitism directly. …It’s been so constant for the last six months that it feels like a new normal. The change has been that dramatic and that fast. I suspect there are few American Jews reading this who don’t get immediately what I’m talking about.

    One of the thing Jews carry with them instinctively [sic] is the knowledge that when one group gets targeted, even one they have no particular connection to, it will almost certainly, eventually come around to them too. This is, I believe, one of the things that keeps Jews anchored on the center-left and left of the political spectrum, even as they’ve become distinct and more Republican-looking by wealth, education-levels and other demographic characteristics. Breitbart News, the outfit that figuratively merged with the Trump campaign when it’s CEO took over the Trump campaign, got started with whole sections about ‘black crime’ and a smorgasbord of anti-black and anti-Hispanic racism. But it didn’t take them long to get on to full-throated anti-Semitism. Jews are a tiny minority of the US population. Most demographers would put their number at between 1.5 to 2 percent of the population, and closer to the lower end of that range. When race purity and tribalism become the order of the day it’s going to be very hard for them not to end up as outsiders.

    In this sense, whether or not some variant of liberalism and pluralism is rooted in Jewish political culture, an attachment to pluralism is also strategic. We’re better off supporting a coalition either made up of or containing a lot of other non-majority groups – whether that’s African-Americans or Catholics or Latinos or Asians or gays and lesbians or whoever else.

    It’s not GOP elites or the great mass of Republicans who are driving this change, the normalization of anti-Semitism in US political discourse. But the great mass of them (with some very honorable exceptions) are standing by and standing with the man and the movement that is doing these things.

    I doubt very much that there are many Jews who don’t feel the change from 2015 to 2016 and very few who don’t know where the change is coming from. I doubt Paul Ryan has an anti-Semitic bone in his body. But he’s going to campaign with Trump on Saturday, the day before the second presidential debate. That’s all I need to know.

    I should make clear that I know that Blacks and Hispanic Americans – not to mention American Muslims – have been treated to as much and in many cases far more hostility and racism this year. It is the faintest kind of silver lining to what I’ve described above that the relative power and influence of many Jews has highlighted for them what our non-white brothers and sisters are experiencing routinely. But that only makes the larger point. When purity and tribalism become the order of the day in a country that is still largely white and Christian, we won’t be part of the club.

  134. says

    Good news for the Obama administration:

    […] Over the last 12 months, the overall economy has created 2.44 million new jobs, which is a pretty healthy number. What’s more, September was the 72nd consecutive month of positive job growth, which is the longest on record. […]


  135. says

    South Carolina’s Governor Nikki Haley extended the state’s voter-registration deadline as part of her response to Hurricane Matthew.

    Meanwhile, Governor Rick Scott of Florida is being a dunderhead and refusing to extend that state’s voter-registration deadline. He’s getting a lot of pressure to do so, so maybe he will change his mind.

    Meanwhile Rush Limbaugh is trying for first prize in Stupid Land by claiming that Obama Administration officials (and other Democrats) are “playing games” with storm forecasts in order to boost their climate change agendas. Limbaugh has always been a major purveyor of conspiracy theories that claim climate change is a hoax.

  136. says

    David Letterman unloads on Trump:

    […] right out of the box, he goes after immigrants and how they’re drug dealers and they’re rapists. And everybody swallows hard. And they think, oh, well, somebody’ll take him aside and say, “Don, don’t do that.” But it didn’t happen.

    And then, I can remember him doing an impression, behind a podium, of a reporter for The New York Times who has a congenital disorder. And then I thought, if this was somebody else — if this was a member of your family or a next-door neighbor, a guy at work — you would immediately distance yourself from that person. […]

    The thing about Trumpy was, I think people just were amused enough about him to keep him afloat in the polls, because nobody wanted the circus to pull up and leave town.

    […] Slowly but surely, everybody got sucked into this vortex. “Did you hear what Donald Trump said?” And everything downstream got worse and worse. Poor Ruth Bader Ginsburg gets sucked into it, and I’m thinking, Oh, don’t take the bait, ma’am. Then she says so-and-so and she has to apologize. Kids, if you turn off the light, the moths will stop coming. […]

  137. says

    More conservative bullshit about Hurricane Matthew:

    […] “The deplorables are starting to wonder if govt has been lying to them about Hurricane Matthew intensity to make exaggerated point on climate,” and “Hurricane Center has monopoly on data. No way of verifying claims. Nassau ground observations DID NOT match statements! 165mph gusts? WHERE?” Drudge later posted the web address of a NOAA buoy and encouraged readers to monitor the storm on their own, to see if “observations match the Hurricane Center’s claimed 140 mph sustained winds.”

    On Wednesday, Rush Limbaugh expressed a similar sentiment on his radio show, saying that government scientists might be “playing games” with storm data in order to “sell” the role climate change has played in making hurricanes stronger.

    Talking Points Memo link

  138. says

    This is a followup to SC’s comment 175. I wanted to emphasize the fact that during that town-hall (sort of a town hall event, but not really), Trump called immigrants “things” and “crap.”

    “We’re going to build a wall and we are going to stop things from coming in.” [Maybe he was thinking of drugs? More likely that he was thinking of criminals.]

    “We are going to stop this crap from coming into your state.”

    Some conservative excuse-makers are pointing out that Trump was talking about heroin (the “things” reference), but the problem with that excuse is that he didn’t mention heroin until later. He was talking about immigrants. Also, the question Trump was asked did not mention heroin.

  139. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump suggests immigrants allowed in illegally to vote

    Citing a Border Patrol union leader, Donald Trump said Friday that agents have been told to allow immigrants into the United States illegally “so they can vote in the election.” But he offered no evidence to support his most recent claim that presidential voting may be tainted by fraud.
    In an immigration round table with Trump, Art Del Cueto, a vice president for the National Border Patrol Council, told the candidate Friday that officials in the U.S. are being directed to ignore criminal histories of immigrants and speed up citizenship applications.
    “That’s a massive story,” Trump responded, saying it would be ignored by the media. “They are letting people pour into the country so they can go ahead and vote.”
    However, union spokesman Shawn Moran, who was in New York with Del Cueto, said later in a telephone interview that several issues were conflated during the round table discussion.
    Border Patrol agents have indeed seen an increase in attempts to cross the U.S.-Mexico border illegally, Moran said. But Moran did not say any border agents had been ordered to let those immigrants in so they could vote in November.
    The two issues are sometimes linked in a misleading fashion, and the brief exchange between Del Cueto and Trump underscored that.
    Neither Del Cueto nor Trump offered evidence to back up the idea immigration officials are taking action to allow people who have recently crossed the border to cast ballots on Election Day. Newly admitted immigrants are not permitted to vote, a right that is reserved for citizens.
    The process of achieving citizenship takes years. Citizenship applications are handled by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, not the Border Patrol.

    Sounds like typical Trump lying ahead of time to justify his claim that the vote he knows he will lose is rigged. His ego can’t accept it if the people tell Trump “you’re fired”.

  140. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says


    Last night I was at the gym walking on the treadmill. They have lots of televisions up on the wall and, of course, one is tuned to Fox News. The sound can be accessed via ports on the treadmill, but all of the channels have the closed captioning turned on. I try not to look at the Fox channel, but, hell. I noticed that they were doing a long segment about how hurricanes close to the election have changed history. The right-wing meme that Obama won in 2012 because of hurricane Sandy will never die.

  141. says

    Last night I was at the gym walking on the treadmill. They have lots of televisions up on the wall and, of course, one is tuned to Fox News.

    I know – there’s always, always one tuned to Fox. I take comfort in the fact that when I put the one in front of my treadmill on MSNBC, people tend to choose the ellipticals behind me. Could just be their habitual machines, and is a completely unscientific sort of poll, but it makes me feel better. (That I’m in a blue state with essentially zero chance of going for Trump helps, too.)

  142. says

    Brother Ogvorbis @186, I feel your pain. The place where I get the oil changed in my truck always features Fox News on the screen in the waiting room. Propaganda everywhere.

    And, yes, right-wingers never let go of conspiracy theories. Even the wilder ones die down for awhile, they will be resurrected.

    The patriarch of Duck Dynasty is spreading the theory that Hillary Clinton will win because Satan is controlling the Democratic Party. I guess we can add that to Trump’s stupid claim that immigrants are flooding into the USA so that they can vote for Democratic candidates. These and other excuses (rigged elections, etc.) all point to the fact that right-wingers fear that Trump is going to lose.

  143. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    re @105:
    Last night’s guest on Colbert’s Late Show (LSSC) was a famous Mexican expat, Gael Garcia Bernal. He pointed out that the Mexicn-USA border flow is currently more heavily “USA–>Mexico”. That far more Americans with Mexican heritage are trying to leave for Mexico, than Mexican-residents who are trying to migrate to USA.
    He also, of course, discussed the quality of the migrants, being the poor and down trodden who are migrating to build a better life, and not the paranoid-imaginings of “rapists and drug dealers”.
    *whew* *Agreed*
    We seem to be stuck in the mode of the legendary vagabond who when given a room in a welfare provided apartment building, immediately argues to “keep all those moochers out”. Meaning: this nation was built by immigrants, and grew by welcoming immigration. Now we want to stop immigration and portray immigrants as thieves and worse. ( ?! )
    Yeah we’re wealthier than most of the world. That does make us possible targets for thievery and such which doesn’t happen by migrants (only fatcats thieve from other fatcats).
    Can’t our wealth be used by us to HELP the poor get better, improve their lives, so they don’t have to STEAL it from us? I think one candidate (who shall remain nameless *wink*) leans that way.
    Wealth is worthless if it just stays idle in a bank vault. Wealth is meant to be used, to be a meaningful measure of value. Money. Let it flow. Idle money is simply a cesspool. Clean water is a flowing river.
    Immigrants come, not only to improve their own lives but to provide opportunities for everyone around them, not only their children, but society as a whole. Migration was motivated by frustration by oppression in their homeland, so they decide to move someplace that advertises itself as “the land of opportunity”.
    In summary. one candidate wants to close the doors, one wants to open them. Guess which is which, and which I will vote FOR as opposed to voting against the other one.

  144. says

    Neither Del Cueto nor Trump offered evidence to back up the idea immigration officials are taking action to allow people who have recently crossed the border to cast ballots on Election Day.

    The trailer for Desierto, Mexico’s submission for the foreign-language Oscar, very effectively uses audio from Trump’s campaign announcement. The caption at the end reads “Words are as dangerous as bullets.”

  145. says

    Climate scientist and director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University, Michael Mann, addressed the dangerous and stupid claims about Hurricane Matthew:

    MICHAEL SMERCONISH (Host): So we’re politicizing everything else in the 2016 cycle, we may as well politicize the storm, is that it?

    MICHAEL MANN: […] We’ve gotten to the point where critics of the president, the critics of taking action on climate change have decided they’re going to deny that hurricanes exist, or at least are as strong as we’re measuring them to be, to support this narrative of anti-science and climate change denial. And it’s just, it’s absurd, it’s insulting, and as your callers mentioned, it dismisses the great loss of human life that we’ve already seen happen with latest storm Matthew.

    SMERCONISH: Rush said yesterday it’s in the interest of the left to have destructive hurricanes because then they can blame it on climate change […] which they can desperately continue trying to sell. Your response to that quote is what?

    MANN: […]The idea that the National Hurricane Center which has no other agenda, other than to predict the trajectory and intensity of these storms and help the public deal with the information that they provide in forming emergency evacuations, the idea that they would somehow, first of all, be able to manipulate the data that comes out of their dropsonde […]

    So to believe that NOAA, the National Hurricane Center is somehow manipulating the information about the intensity of these storms would require a conspiracy of epic proportions where somehow they would literally in real-time be editing the dropsonde data in such a way as to change the picture that the data is presenting. It’s just absurd, and it represents a new low, in my view, of denialism. […] And many of these folks — Rush Limbaugh and Matt Drudge — have long been advocates for a conservative agenda of inaction and denial on climate change. […]

    […] people could die because of the misinformation that folks like Rush Limbaugh and Matt Drudge are putting out there. It’s critical that people understand the threat that these storms represent, particularly the storm surge. […] to be telling the public that they don’t have anything to worry about, that the data’s being manipulated, that’s literally a threat to human life. […]

    SMERCONISH: You referenced Matt Drudge. He tweeted yesterday, “Hurricane Center has monopoly on data. No way of verifying claims.” […]

    MANN: Not at all. […] if you’re really into this stuff, then you’re aware of the fact that National Hurricane Center dumps all the data that they measure immediately into the public domain so that others can take a look themselves. So it’s absolutely absurd, the idea that they have a monopoly on the data. […] It requires a level of conspiratorial thinking that is unprecedented even for the Rush Limbaughs and the Matt Drudges of the world.

    SMERCONISH: So let me ask a naive and fundamental question. What, if anything, does Hurricane Matthew have to do with climate change?

    MANN: […] Climate change sets the context for understanding the trends we’re seeing in these storms. We can’t say that climate change caused Matthew, that’s not the right question […]. What we can say is that the rapid intensification that Matthew underwent as it ballooned from not even a tropical storm into a hurricane, […] a Cat 5 hurricane, in record time. We call that rapid intensification and we understand very well that rapid intensification of storms like Matthew underwent is a direct consequence of ocean heat content. […]

    What we know in this case is there was such a deep layer of warm water in the main development region of the Caribbean that there was no cold water to bring to the surface, and so we didn’t have that dampening effect, and we saw very rapid intensification. […] We know that the increased heat content of the oceans […]is leading to more intense hurricanes and typhoons […].


  146. ChasCPeterson says

    Not sure if I’ve ever politicked here before, but I thought people here might enjoy reading this. Maybe it’s already been linked. I think it’s very well written, and it expresses some of my feelings about this election pretty much perfectly (after the self-historical prologue).

  147. says

    Not sure if I’ve ever politicked here before, but I thought people here might enjoy reading this. Maybe it’s already been linked. I think it’s very well written, and it expresses some of my feelings about this election pretty much perfectly (after the self-historical prologue).

    I linked to it the other day (@ #151 above). It’s one of the best.

  148. says

    “Donald Trump Says Central Park Five Are Guilty, Despite DNA Evidence”:

    Wading into a racially-charged case from his past, Donald Trump indicated that the “Central Park Five” were guilty, despite being officially exonerated by DNA evidence decades after a notorious 1989 rape case.

    “They admitted they were guilty,” Trump said to CNN in a statement. “The police doing the original investigation say they were guilty. The fact that that case was settled with so much evidence against them is outrageous. And the woman, so badly injured, will never be the same.”

    The five men were convicted as teenagers after implicating each other under intense questioning over a brutal sexual assault on a jogger that dominated the tabloids. Defenders said they were coerced into confessing and all five were later cleared by DNA evidence and a separate confession in 2002 from another criminal who took credit for the assault. New York paid them $41 million in a settlement in 2014 over their ordeal.

    Trump took out a full-page ad at the time of the crime calling for New York to reinstate the death penalty in response. The case was notable for its racial politics: Four of the Central Park Five were black and one was Latino while the victim was a white banker.

    This 2015 NYT article has more.

  149. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    From SC’s #197 second link:

    Five teenagers, four of them black, one Latino, were arrested and imprisoned for carrying out the attack. Known as the Central Park Five, they had their convictions vacated years later after another man, Matias Reyes, confessed to the crime.

    Nope, no possibility of racial prejudice by The Donald. *snicker*
    The Donald, what would you be saying if the five were white?

  150. says

    The Obama administration has released a joint statement with intelligence agencies saying they’re confident the Russian government (at the highest levels) was behind the recent hacks and that they were meant to influence the election.

  151. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    SC @199:

    Makes me really wonder just what The Donald owes to the Russian mob? Or maybe Putin has guaranteed hundreds of millions in loans for The Donald? What has The Donald been promised for removing all sanctions against Russia if The Donald is elected President? Or has The Donald made promises to Putin if Putin (and his minions) help The Donald get elected?

  152. says

    SC @196, that was truly depressing. I noticed that some of the people threatening to harm Eichenwald also claimed that journalists had harmed them. This is basically Trump’s claim, that people who work as journalists (like Katy Tur, one of the recipients of threats mentioned by Eichenwald) are harming Trump supporters. That’s a set up for violence.

    Trump is encouraging and enabling sick dunderheads everywhere. From Katy Tur:

    […] “@KatyTurNBC & @DebSopan [sic] should be fired for dishonest reporting,” Trump tweeted. “@KatyTurNBC, 3rd rate reporter & @SopanDeb @CBS lied.”

    He demanded I apologize.

    I didn’t, so Trump decided to go further in Mount Pleasant, pointing his finger squarely at me and launching a personal attack as millions of Americans watched at home.

    “What a lie it was,” Trump said, referring to the claim that he had left the stage abruptly. “What a lie. Katy Tur. What a lie it was. Third. Rate. Reporter. Remember that.” The crowd’s boos ricocheted off the iron hull of the USS Yorktown. […]

    It’s unlikely, however, that any of Trump’s future attacks will be as scary as what happened in Mount Pleasant, where the crowd, feeding off Trump, seemed to turn on me like a large animal, angry and unchained.

    It wasn’t until hours later, when Secret Service took the extraordinary step of walking me to my car, that the incident sank in.

  153. says

    Oh, FFS. For fundraising purposes, Trump is claiming that President Obama has declared war on Catholics, and that Hillary Clinton will follow suit. Trump covered his ass by phrasing the lie in a familiar way, “Many people say Obama has declared a war on Catholics.”

    Our current president has not respected American’s First Amendment rights. Many believe he has declared a war on Catholics. And my opponent promises to be even worse! […]

    The fundraising letter went to, and that group posted it on their website. In the letter, Trump promised to stop the “war” and to sign anti-LBGT and anti-reproductive-health bills. (First Amendment Defense Act and Conscience Protection Act.)

    While Trump is promising conservative Catholics that he will sign anti-LGBT legislation, Hillary Clinton is promising to fight for LGBT rights.

    […] If I’m fortunate enough to be elected president, I’ll protect the progress we’ve fought so hard to achieve — and I’ll keep fighting until every American can live free from discrimination and prejudice.

    That means working to pass the Equality Act. It would finally provide LGBT people full federal nondiscrimination protections in housing, employment and so much more. I know that differences of opinion on LGBT equality still exist in the hearts of some Americans, but they should not exist under our laws. […]

    LGBT people are now more likely than any other group to be the target of a hate crime. America saw the effects of hate in Orlando, with the attack on the Pulse nightclub — the deadliest mass shooting by a single person in our history.

    The danger is compounded for LGBT people of color, who face intersectional pressures and dangers, particularly transgender people of color. Last year, more than 20 transgender women were killed in America. Recently, three were murdered right here in Philadelphia. […]

    The quoted text is from an essay Clinton wrote for the Philadelphia Gay News.

  154. says

    OMG, yet another example of Trump talking about women in a vulgar and demeaning manner. “Grab them by the [P-word]” … really? [can’t spell it out]

    This is an actual recording. Trump can’t wriggle out of this in any way. It’s not for “entertainment” — it’s Trump being Trump.

    Washington Post link

    “I moved on her and I failed. I’ll admit it,” Trump is heard saying. It was unclear when the events he was describing took place. The tape was recorded several months after he married his third wife, Melania.

    “Whoa,” another voice said.

    “I did try and f— her. She was married,” Trump says.

    Trump continues: “And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. […].’”

    “I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” Trump says. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”

    At that point in the audio, Trump and Bush appear to notice Arianne Zucker, the actress who is waiting to escort them into the soap opera set.

    “Your girl’s hot as s—, in the purple,” says Bush, who’s now a co-host of NBC’s “Today” show.

    “Whoa!” Trump says. “Whoa!”

    “I’ve gotta use some tic tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says.“You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”

    “And when you’re a star they let you do it,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

    “Whatever you want,” says another voice, apparently Bush’s.

    “Grab them by the p—y,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

  155. says

    OMG, yet another example of Trump talking about women in a vulgar and demeaning manner. “Grab them by the [P-word]” … really? [can’t spell it out]

    This is an actual recording. Trump can’t wriggle out of this in any way. It’s not for “entertainment” — it’s Trump being Trump.

    Washington Post link

    “I moved on her and I failed. I’ll admit it,” Trump is heard saying. It was unclear when the events he was describing took place. The tape was recorded several months after he married his third wife, Melania.

    “Whoa,” another voice said.

    “I did try and f— her. She was married,” Trump says.

    Trump continues: “And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. […].’”

    “I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” Trump says. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”

    At that point in the audio, Trump and Bush appear to notice Arianne Zucker, the actress who is waiting to escort them into the soap opera set.

    “Your girl’s hot as s—, in the purple,” says Bush, who’s now a co-host of NBC’s “Today” show.

    “Whoa!” Trump says. “Whoa!”

    “I’ve gotta use some tic tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says.“You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”

    “And when you’re a star they let you do it,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

    “Whatever you want,” says another voice, apparently Bush’s.

    “Grab them by the [P-word],” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

  156. says

    OMG, yet another example of Trump talking about women in a vulgar and demeaning manner. “Grab them by the [P-word]” … really? [can’t spell it out]

    This is an actual recording. Trump can’t wriggle out of this in any way. It’s not for “entertainment” — it’s Trump being Trump.

    Washington Post link

    “I moved on her and I failed. I’ll admit it,” Trump is heard saying. It was unclear when the events he was describing took place. The tape was recorded several months after he married his third wife, Melania.

    “Whoa,” another voice said.

    “I did try and [F word] her. She was married,” Trump says.

    Trump continues: “And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. […].’”

    “I moved on her like a [B word], but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” Trump says. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”

    At that point in the audio, Trump and Bush appear to notice Arianne Zucker, the actress who is waiting to escort them into the soap opera set.

    “Your girl’s hot as [S word], in the purple,” says Bush, who’s now a co-host of NBC’s “Today” show.

    “Whoa!” Trump says. “Whoa!”

    “I’ve gotta use some tic tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says.“You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”

    “And when you’re a star they let you do it,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

    “Whatever you want,” says another voice, apparently Bush’s.

    “Grab them by the [P word],” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

  157. says

    Here is Trump’s excuse for the conversation referred to in comment 206:

    “This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago. Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course – not even close,” Trump said in a statement. “I apologize if anyone was offended.”

  158. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    @207: Trump said in a statement. “I apologize if anyone was offended.”
    NB the conditional.

  159. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Just a note: he was 60.

    From his behavior, he never got out of the elementary school yard bully mode, or the fraternity misogynist mode. I haven’t seen any signs of real maturity other than the number of his age. He could join AARP, except that would make him an old man….

  160. says

    Trump is a 14-year-old spoiled brat in an old man’s body.

    In other news, Rush Limbaugh’s remarks about Hurricane Matthew (comments 181 and 183) are not just wrong, but in really poor taste considering that the death toll in Haiti is over 800.

  161. says

    It’s official. The Russians did it.

    The Obama administration on Friday formally accused the Russian government of stealing and disclosing emails from the Democratic National Committee and from a range of prominent individuals and institutions…. In a statement from the director of national intelligence, James Clapper Jr., and the Department of Homeland Security, the government said the leaked emails that have appeared on a variety of websites “are intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.”

    NY Times link.

  162. says

    Paul Ryan was scheduled to appear at an event in Wisconsin tomorrow with Donald Trump. Now it appears that Ryan has basically disinvited Trump.

    I am sickened by what I heard today. Women are to be championed and revered, not objectified,” Ryan said. “I hope Mr. Trump treats this situation with the seriousness it deserves and works to demonstrate to the country that he has greater respect for women than this clip suggests. In the meantime, he is no longer attending tomorrow’s event in Wisconsin.

  163. says

    Mitch McConnell says that the tape of Trump talking about women is “repugnant and unacceptable.”

    These comments are repugnant, and unacceptable in any circumstance,” McConnell said. “As the father of three daughters, I strongly believe that Trump needs to apologize directly to women and girls everywhere, and take full responsibility for the utter lack of respect for women shown in his comments on that tape.

    But, no, McConnell still has not rescinded his endorsement of Trump.

  164. says

    What John McCain says about Trump’s comments:

    There are no excuses for Donald Trump’s offensive and demeaning comments. No woman should ever be victimized by this kind of inappropriate behavior. He alone bears the burden of his conduct and alone should suffer the consequences.

  165. says

    Other Republicans trying to distance themselves from Trump’s remarks:

    No woman should ever be described in these terms or talked about in this manner. [Reince Priebus]
    DJT is a malignant clown – unprepared and unfit to be president of the United States. [Mark Kirk]
    It is never appropriate to condone unwanted sexual advances or violence against women. [Cathy McMorris, chair of the House GOP Conference and highest ranking woman in the house]

    Supposedly, we are now waiting to see a video message from Donald Trump, speaking “directly to the voters” about his lewd and sexual-assault-approving comments.

  166. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    DJT is a malignant clown – unprepared and unfit to be president of the United States. [Mark Kirk]

    Kirk is running about 10% behind Tammy Duckworth for re-election as US senator. Illinois is not friendly statewide to conservative republicans, and while Kirk is a moderate rethug, he has tainted himself for five years by going along with the rethug leadership. Only in this election years has he tried to distance himself from the leadership. McConnell should distance himself too after todays revelation. Everybody who wants to be re-elected should.

  167. says

    Mitt Romney: “Hitting on married women? Condoning assault? Such vile degradations demean our wives and daughters and corrupt America’s face to the world.”

    1) Trump didn’t condone assault; he essentially confessed to it.
    2) Knock it off with the “our” – your audience isn’t all men.
    3) “America’s face to the world” is so beyond not an issue here.

  168. KG says

    Of course, everyone who has been paying the slightest attention knew very well that what has just come out was exactly the way Trump talked about women in private. The difference is, now they can’t pretend otherwise.

    (As for the Wikileaks release of parts of Clinton’s speeches to various oligarchs – meh. Just the sort of pandering you’d expect from her, but nothing absolutely damning, which would be required to even begin to offset the Trump tape.)

    A number of the Republicans dis-endorsing Trump have called for him to withdraw from the race, and clearly think that if he did*, Pence would be able to take his place. But this seems very doubtful, at best.

    *I bet that he won’t, but with Trump, nothing is certain.

  169. says

    Other tales of Trump’s unwanted sexual advances against women are starting to pour out. Here is one:

    JILL HARTH’S first concern with Donald Trump’s hands wasn’t that they were small. It’s that they were everywhere.

    Harth and her longtime boyfriend were in meetings with Trump to forge a business partnership. “He was relentless,” Harth recalled in an interview, describing how on Dec. 12, 1992, he took the couple to dinner and a club — and then situated himself beside Harth and ran his hands up her skirt, to her crotch. “I didn’t know how to handle it. I would go away from him and say I have to go to the restroom. It was the escape route.” […]

    That year, Harth continued to meet Trump for business — and, she says, he continued to try to jump her. “He’d say, ‘Let’s go in my room, I want to lie down,’ and he’d pull me along. I’d say, ‘I don’t want to lie down,’ and it would turn into a wrestling match. … I remember yelling, ‘I didn’t come here for this.’ He’d say, ‘Just calm down.’” […]

    Harth says that she worried about being raped by a man who weighed twice as much as she did, and at one point she vomited as a defense mechanism. But she says that he was never violent and genuinely seemed to assume sexual interest on her part; often he was playful as she was frightened: “His mind was in a totally different place than mine,” Harth recalls. “He thinks he’s God’s gift to women.”

    Harth said in her deposition that all this was “very traumatic,” but she remained cordial because she feared that showing anger would destroy the business relationship and her ambitions of getting ahead. For the same reason, she told me, she did not go to the police to report sexual assault. […]

    In the end, Houraney and Harth used a Trump casino to hold an event that Trump praised in a letter to them. But in 1994, Trump walked away from the relationship and refused to pay what he owed, they say. […]

    NY Times link

    As one journalist said, this thing is about to go full Cosby. One difference is that Trump did not drug the women he pursued (as far as we know at this time), he just assumed that they would want to have sex with him. That attitude came out in the Access Hollywood tape when he claimed to be a “star.”

    The NY Times article goes on to note that Trump made disparaging comments about some black women involved in the “calendar girls” deal that Jill Harth and her husband were trying to put together.

    Roll tape of Trump’s children saying that he is not a racist, and of his daughter saying that he is not a groper.

  170. says

    Transcript of Trump’s apology:

    I’ve never said I’m a perfect person nor pretended to be someone that I’m not. I’ve said and done things I regret and the words released today on this more than a decade old video are one of them. Anyone who knows me knows these words don’t reflect who I am. I said it, I was wrong and I apologize.

    I’ve traveled the country talking about change for America but my travels have also changed me. I’ve spent time with grieving mothers who have spent lost their children, laid off workers whose jobs have gone to other countries and people from all walks of life who just want a better future. I have gotten to know the great people of our country and I’ve been humbled by the faith they’ve placed in me. I pledge to be a better man tomorrow and will never ever let you down.

    Let’s be honest. We’re living in the real world. This is nothing more than a distraction from the important issues we’re facing today. We are losing our jobs, we’re less safe than we were eight years ago and Washington is totally broken.

    Hillary Clinton and her kind have run our country into the ground. I’ve said some foolish things but there’s a big difference between the words and actions of other people. Bill Clinton has actually abused women and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims. We will discuss this more in the coming days. See you at the debate on Sunday.

  171. says

    The unendorsements and calls for Trump to drop out are growing. There’s word he’ll give a speech tonight, but he’s saying there’s “zero chance” he’ll withdraw.

    If this is what came out on October 7th, I can only imagine what remains to be revealed, and don’t want to think about it. I want him to drop out so that the country isn’t dragged even further down into the sewer.

  172. says

    Statements of non-endorsement so far from:

    Basically all Utah Republican leaders
    Kelly Ayotte
    Mike Crapo
    Mike Coffman
    Barbara Comstock
    Martha Roby

    And now Carly Fiorina has called for him to “step aside.”

  173. says

    Boston Globe endorses Clinton, slams Trump:

    This election isn’t a close call. Only one candidate on the ballot Nov. 8 belongs anywhere near the White House, and it’s Hillary Clinton. The Globe enthusiastically endorses her candidacy, and urges voters to run, not walk, to their nearest polling place when early voting begins in Massachusetts on Oct. 24….

    It’s a fairly stupid editorial, but gets the important conclusion right.

  174. says

    I’m wondering if there’s an honor better than the Pulitzer that could be given to David Fahrenthold, Susanne Craig, and Kurt Eichenwald – like a “Defenders of the Republic” award.

  175. says

    SC @236, I like that idea.

    Here’s an example of the doofuses still standing by Trump. Senator Roy Blunt said:

    I am glad to see that he understands more about the country now than he believes he did when this process started. I think if you want to solve the problems that have been created over the last eight years, you can’t have a third Obama administration. So he needs to be vigorous in explaining how he is a different man than that person, but how he hopes to lead the country and I think he may very well get that done. […] Donald Trump’s statements were disrespectful and inappropriate, and he was right to apologize.

    Man oh man. The doofuses like Blunt are really grading on a curve, and really ready to give Trump the benefit of the doubt.

    How is Trump now different from the guy that tweeted about Alicia Macho’s nonexistent sex tape?

    Here’s some good news, maybe, Pence will not stand in for Trump at Paul Ryan’s event in Wisconsin. Trump had announced earlier:

    Governor Mike Pence will be representing me tomorrow in Wisconsin. I will be spending the day in New York in debate prep with RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, Gov. Chris Christie and Sen. Jeff Sessions, and then flying to St. Louis on Sunday for the 2nd Presidential Debate.

    But Pence cancelled.

  176. says

    The Central Park Five, who were falsely accused of a crime in 1989, are really standing up for themselves against Trump’s recent comments. (See SC’s comment 198, and Nerd’s comment 199.)

    After Donald Trump reaffirmed his long-held belief this week that the men known as the Central Park Five were guilty in an infamous, decades-old rape case, two members of the since-exonerated group blasted Trump in interviews with Mother Jones, calling him a “stunt artist” and saying “he’s gotten worse” since his involvement in their 1990 conviction.

    “You have a person who’s supposed to be a very intelligent business man, and what I’m sure he would do if he was trying to purchase a property is do his due diligence,” Yusef Salaam told me Friday, noting that Trump continued to ignore the facts of the Central Park Five case. “For somebody to still stand on the side of injustice like Donald Trump is, that becomes a very scary place to be.” […]

    Mother Jones talked to two members of the Central Park Five—Salaam and Korey Wise—about Trump’s role in their case, their thoughts on his presidential candidacy, and his latest comments about their case. […] a third member of the group, Raymond Santana, skewered Trump on Twitter: “What more do we have to prove? I’m tired of proving our innocence! I don’t care what this asshole thinks.”

    Salaam, who was 15 when he was jailed for the assault, said he believes Trump played a crucial role in the media campaign against him.

    “[Trump] was one of the fire starters—really the main fire starter […] “The ad was talking about and goes specifically into fears that the public was having at that particular time,” Salaam told me. […]

    More than 25 years later, Trump hasn’t changed, Salaam said. “As a matter of fact, he’s gotten worse,” he said. “He believes in everything he’s put out there—the racial vision he’s created.”

    For his part, Wise said he doesn’t think about what a Trump presidency would mean because he doesn’t take him seriously: “He’s a stunt artist…He follows publicity.”

    But Salaam had a bleaker assessment of what the country would look like with Trump as commander in chief: “If he becomes president, what is that going to mean for the people who are losing their lives in the street? This ‘law and order’ is going to be a very, very scary thing for us as a people.”

  177. says

    Joy Reid’s coverage included the statement that “It seems that the men of the Trump campaign are tripling down” on Trump’s sexual assault comments.
    Media Matters link


    JOY REID (HOST): You have the person who is really in charge of the campaign, Steve Bannon, who has his own issues and allegations made by women including his former wife about the way he treats women coming out being asked by John Harwood,[…] “asked if any chance Trump will quit the race: ‘are you serious?'” Essentially, it seems that the men of the Trump campaign are reasserting themselves, and they’re tripling down.

    REBECCA TRAISTER: Well, the men of the Trump campaign are totally consistent with the remarks that we heard coming out of Donald Trump on that tape. […] This is a man — the racism and the misogyny that this man has had on display for his entire time as a candidate, the misogyny part was made particularly explicit last night, but it is not that different from what we have been seeing from him consistently.

    He has Steve Bannon. He’s advised by Roger Ailes, a man who just left the Fox News network for serial harassment, sexual harassment, of his female employees. […] And I think it’s interesting that this was something he voiced about white women. It wasn’t about Alicia Machado, it wasn’t about Mexicans, it wasn’t about the Central Park 5 […]. No one got that upset about any of these people, but this tape, and I’m not devaluing its importance, and it’s an incredible moment that was caught and published […] but this tape is somehow thought of in a different category. Why is that? Is it because he’s saying these things about a white woman?

    Video available at the link.

  178. says

    More former Trump supporters jumping ship:

    Donald Trump’s former policy coordinator has released a statement renouncing the Republican nominee in the wake of a damning video released Friday. “Under no circumstances will I support Donald Trump for president,” Pratik Chougule wrote.

    Chougule then took it a step further and said he wished he’d never joined Trump’s campaign in the first place. “I regret my decision last April to join the campaign as policy coordinator. Although I left the campaign in August for a variety of reasons, I wish that I had done so sooner and spoken out more forcefully against a candidate who embodies the worst excesses of our culture,” he said. […]


  179. says

    Robert De Niro on Trump: ” He’s so blatantly stupid […]”

    […] A mutt who doesn’t know what he’s talking about, doesn’t do his homework, doesn’t care, thinks he’s gaming society, doesn’t pay his taxes,” he said. “He talks how he’d like to punch people in the face?” De Niro said. “Well, I’d like to punch him in the face.”

    De Niro’s comments were so strong that his clip reportedly didn’t make the cut into the ad campaign.

    Video available at The Daily Beast.

  180. says

    The second presidential debate will air tomorrow, Sunday, at 9 pm Eastern time. It will be held in St. Louis, Missouri at Washington University. Networks carrying the debate include: CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, PBS, Univision, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, C-SPAN, and more.

  181. says

    At about the same time that Trump’s comments about grabbing the private parts of women he does not know were being discussed on air, President Obama was signing a “bill of rights” for survivors of sexual assault.

    The bill includes these rights for victims:

    – Not to be charged for a sexual assault evidence collection kit.

    – To be informed of testing results.

    – To be notified in writing 60 days beforehand if the kit is going to be destroyed, and to request that the kit be preserved.

    – To have the kit preserved for the entire applicable statute of limitations.

    In the past, some states have routinely destroyed rape kits after six months if the victim had not yet pressed charges. Those states destroyed the kits and did not keep records in most cases of the testing results.

  182. blf says

    This is the point of no return for Donald Trump:

    Disgusting comments about groping women, and a non-apology, have sealed his fate. The only question now is what the GOP can rescue of its own reputation

    It’s going to get worse for Donald Trump and his Republican party. Much worse.

    Normal candidates might have realized they were bumping along the bottom of their election — if not, their life — when video emerged of them bragging, as a newlywed, about forcing themselves on women, genitals and all.

    But not the man who promises to make America great again. No, Donald Trump’s so-called apology video was even more incompetent and incoherent than the rest of his campaign to date. And that’s quite an achievement for a man who has attacked a grieving, Gold Star family.


    Condemning Trump’s words will not be enough to save [the thugs]. It was just a few days ago that the US senator in New Hampshire, Kelly Ayotte, said absolutely when asked if she would tell kids to look up to Trump. She has since said she misspoke. But no amount of regret and criticism will erase that foolish misjudgment.

    Ayotte’s misjudgment is really shared by an entire party establishment that is now stampeding for the doors. Republican leaders thought they could cutely tiptoe between their Trump-loving base and Trump-disgusted moderates. Just as they have tried to appease the Tea Party, Obama-hating fringe for the last eight years. Now they find themselves consumed by their own compromises.


    Now we have the grotesque video of Donald Trump bragging […] With it, Trump showed he is indeed the sum of all the sexist snippets we’ve heard so far.

    The basket of deplorables just found their Mr Universe.


    Until now, Trump’s defenders liked to justify his remarks about Rosie O’Donnell and Megyn Kelly by saying that the GOP nominee was just an entertainer. That’s not possible any more. Trump’s disgusting comments were made in private, not as a public performance. And that’s precisely why they are indelible.


    Given his disastrous position with minorities, Trump’s sole hope was to win among white voters. But he was already losing to Clinton among white women: a voting group that Romney won. There simply aren’t enough white voters for Trump to win without sweeping the votes of white women.

    I pledge to be a better man tomorrow and will never, ever let you down, Trump said in his half-baked apology video.

    Of all the unbelievable words that have come out of his pouting lips, these may be the least credible. […]

  183. says

    Politico reports:

    The Republican National Committee on Saturday appeared to at least temporarily halt the operations of some of the “Victory” program that is devoted to electing Donald Trump.

    In an email from the RNC to a victory program mail vendor, with the subject line “Hold on all projects,” the committee asked the vendor to “put a hold” on mail production.

    “Please put a hold/stop on all mail projects right now. If something is in production or print it needs to stop. Will update you when to proceed,” Lauren Toomey, a staffer in the RNC’s political department, wrote in an email that was obtained by POLITICO….

  184. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    This is going to get ugly.

    Henry then approvingly retweeted a post containing a transcript from Fox News colleague Martha McCallum, saying, “So this is coming – it’s coming from Ed Henry. And I just wanted to, you know, bring it to the viewers at home.”

    She added, “According to the interview that Ed Henry did with Ben Carson, they believe that there is more to come. That there wiull be other bombshells like what we heard last night. I mean, if that is the case –now they may be trying to prepare for it and there might be somthing else out there and they are trying to prepare the American people for it.”

    Apparently, the way the rules are written, Trump can not be deposed by the GOP, he has to resign voluntarily. And, as more shit comes out, the pressure coming from the GOP will increase. And the Trumpistas will view this as politics as usual winning. Is it wrong for me to hope that this splits the GOP?

  185. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Brother Ogvorbis, thanks for the link. I was able to find a video I wanted to post. *scroll down for the video*
    An AM Joy segment where Kurt Eichenwald calls out a Trump defender for juvenile behavior for constantly trying to change the subject to Hillary Clinton rather than speaking about Trump. About time, and should be done every time.

  186. says

    From the video to which Nerd of Redhead referred in comment 252:

    […]“Two things here,” Eichenwald began. “I am so tired of the playground mentality of the Trump defenders. Yes, Trump. Anytime there’s an issue, they can’t answer for the candidate they’re defending. So the first thing they do is like a 7-year-old say, ‘Well, my sister did this.’ It is so juvenile and number two, he said, ‘Well, yes, but, you know, in the 1980s, he believed this.’ Okay, fine. We accept that. We accept that’s what he believed. We accept he exercised his First Amendment rights.”

    “Now let’s put that aside and talk about the real issue. And the real issue is this man just came out and said, these five men whose lives were destroyed by a false conviction, ‘I say they’re still guilty.’ You can’t change the subject. You can’t say Hillary. You can’t say 1980’s. Defend what he did this week and stop trying to deceive people, stop lying, and address what your candidate is and what he’s done.”

  187. says

    From journalist Mark Sumner:

    […] Sure, Republicans were willing to put up with racism, sexism, religious bigotry, raiding a charity for fun and profit, attacking a Gold Star family, attacking women, attacking women, attacking more women. But Trump’s actually bragging about being a sexual predator seems to have finally been the last straw for a lot of Republicans who up to now were willing to say “Sure, he’s a racist pig who’s likely to start World War III, but he promises to cut my taxes.”

    The list of people who were with Trump right up to the “grab” moment is still growing, and the real question now is how many of them aren’t just withdrawing endorsement, they’re indulging in the fantasy of pretending someone else can take the top chair. […]

  188. blf says

    The Grauniad also lists the thugs who claim to have withdrawn their endorsement of teh trum-prat, those who seem not to have, and those who supposedly never have, The growing list of Republicans abandoning Donald Trump: “High-profile Republicans have rejected the businessman following the release of his remarks on groping women, while others condemn the comments”.

    However, as a reminder, they are all thugs (read: liars), and hence are connected to a thug platform which is as awful as teh trum-prat. In other words, every single one of those lying scumbag authoritarians is welded to a set of policies which is teh trum-prat’s and teabuggers’s near-ultimate dream.

  189. says

    From Talking Points Memo editor, Josh Marshall:

    […] Over the last couple hours, Trump’s supporters are coming back into view. They reportedly heckled Paul Ryan at the event in Wisconsin where he was originally supposed to share the stage with Trump. The same apparently happened in Nevada with senate candidate Joe Heck. Joe Ralston says Heck was booed a short time ago as he told a crowd that he Trump should step down. “I’m so disappointed in you,” yelled one angry Trumper. […]

    Yeah, that’s what I thought would happen. Republican leadership has underestimated the sheer pleasure that their constituents take in wallowing in ignorance-as-a-virtue and in male dominance as a lifestyle. They shouldn’t be surprised. They have nurtured those attitudes for decades.

  190. says

    The makers of Tic Tac have spoken out against Donald Trump:

    Tic Tac respects all women. We find the recent statements and behavior completely inappropriate and unacceptable.


  191. says

    This is a followup to comment 220.

    John McCain has rescinded his support for Trump:

    “I have wanted to support the candidate our party nominated. He was not my choice, but as a past nominee, I thought it important I respect the fact that Donald Trump won a majority of the delegates by the rules our party set. I thought I owed his supporters that deference,” McCain said.

    “But Donald Trump’s behavior this week, concluding with the disclosure of his demeaning comments about women and his boasts about sexual assaults, make it impossible to continue to offer even conditional support for his candidacy. Cindy, with her strong background in human rights and respect for women, fully agrees with me in this.”

    McCain said he and Cindy McCain will not vote Hillary Clinton and will instead write in “some good conservative Republican who is qualified to be president.”

    Politico Link

  192. says

    More boorish past behavior from Trump:

    […] Another particularly vulgar example of Trump’s boorish behavior came in 2012 when he offered to show attorney Gloria Allred his manhood—and then questioned the gender identity of the lawyer who famously crusades on behalf of her female clients.

    The uncouth remarks came about as a result of a spat over another Miss Universe pageant. A trans contestant, Jenna Talackova, was initially barred from competing in the Miss Universe Canada event due to pageant rules stipulating that the contestants needed to be “naturally born” women. She enlisted the help of Allred to challenge the rule, and Trump, who owned Miss Universe at the time. Trump relented and allowed her to compete but not before engaging in quite a lurid exchange of words about Allred and the client she represented. […]

    Daily Beast link

  193. says

    Trump’s debate plan for tomorrow is leaking:

    Trump source on debate plan for tomorrow: “Attack Hillary re bills sex crimes”
    Trump source on debate strategy: “She’s as much an attacker of women as Bill. We’re fully loaded. She’s gonna have to confront her accusers”

  194. says

    More crude and vulgar stuff from the The Trumpster:

    […] On a new batch of recordings from Howard Stern’s radio shows aired Saturday by CNN, Trump said that he would “have no problem” having sex with 24-year-olds, that he “couldn’t care less” if he satisfies the women he sleeps with, that “it’s checkout time” once women reach the age of 35 and that he had engaged in three-way sex. […]

    Trump also described barging in on nude Miss Universe beauty pageant contestants in their dressing room, characterizing his visits as inspections by the contest’s owner.

    In previously reported tapes of Stern programs from the 1990s through this decade, Trump bantered with the host of the popular radio raunchfest about whether he could have “nailed” Princess Diana, whether he would stay with his wife if she were disfigured in a car crash (“How do the breasts look?” Trump asked) and how often he had sex with his wife, Melania. […]

    Washington Post link

  195. says

    The reason Trump could run for president knowing all of this was out there is that he doesn’t think it’s wrong. If he thought it was wrong, he wouldn’t have bragged about it. To be clear: He recognizes that many people see his behavior and statements as wrong and in some cases illegal, but he doesn’t understand and has contempt for those judgments (as evidenced by his running commentary on “political correctness”). As an “arrogant-vindictive” neurotic and authoritarian, his “morality” is of a completely different sort. It’s about (so-called) dominance, strength, power, and success. He has no moral compass. Or, again to be clear, the points on his moral compass aren’t right and wrong but strong and weak, powerful and powerless, winners and losers. That’s his version of morality. As I’ve said many times, he’s not capable of real compassion or contrition. He’s a terrible human being.

  196. says

    The makers of Tic Tac have spoken out against Donald Trump:…

    Amazing that Trump’s nemeses this month are microphones and candies. It’s like a Tom Robbins novel.

  197. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    SC @167:

    Amazing that Trump’s nemeses this month are microphones and candies.

    Yeah. He has a real problem with things he considers objects. Microphones, candies, women . . .

  198. Brother Ogvorbis, Fully Defenestrated Emperor of Steam, Fire and Absurdity says

    And that was 367, not 167. Sorry.

  199. says

    Trump is now urging his followers, and urging the Republican politicians who still support him, to go after anti-Trump Republicans. And you know that some people will do just that.

    Trump’s view is that anti-trump Republicans are “more concerned with their political future than they are about the future of the country”

    More Trump threats:

    So many self-righteous hypocrites. Watch their poll numbers – and elections – go down!

    GOP traitors! Not supporting U is voting for her, destroying America. [Trump retweeted this from one of his followers]

    Looks like this is Trump’s version of debate prep.

  200. says

    There must have been a dearth of Trump surrogates willing to hit the morning shows today. Rudi Giuliani just made the rounds and hit them all. Here is some of what he said:

    “That was then and this is now. He’s gone through 14 months of running for president, and as you know running for president does something to change you,” Giuliani told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.

    “I think that alone has put a heavier weight of responsibility on his shoulders than he ever had when even he was an entertainment star in the star of the apprentice,” the ex-mayor said on CNN. “It’s a different man that emerges when you campaign around the country for a year and a half and hear the concerns and the problems of the American people.”

    [on NBC] “this is a situation where neither side should throw stones, because both sides have sinned.”

    On CBS’ Face the Nation: “He’s a different man now than he was then having gone through 14 months of a campaign that having gone through it myself convinces you of a lot of things are important that maybe you don’t realize before,” he told John Dickerson.

    “He has his set of flaws, I have mine,” he added. “I guess there are a few perfect people, but in my view there’s only been one and that was Jesus Christ.”

  201. says

    Michael Steele, former chairman of the Republican Party, got it right:

    This is a devastating blow to the Trump campaign and to the party, and there is not much either can do to salvage it. It almost doesn’t matter what Trump does in the next debate.

    Meanwhile, Fox News is going with the claim that all the outrage over Trump’s “grab them by the [P word]” remark is manufactured outrage or is the liberal media “overplaying” the video tape and overplaying their hand.

    Other Fox News hosts are attacking David Frahrenthold, the reporter for the Washington Post. Howard Kurtz: “Any hesitation at all in disclosing what was obviously meant to be a private conversation?” That approach was coupled with claims that the only goal was to damage Trump’s candidacy.

  202. blf says

    Nigel Farage defends Donald Trump over alpha-male boasting:

    Ukip leader [sic], in US supporting Trump, says quite a lot of women say things they would not want to see on Fox News
    Nigel Farage, has waded into the crisis engulfing Donald Trump’s US presidential bid, insisting the Republican candidate’s obscene remarks about groping women amounted to alpha-male boasting.

    Speaking in St Louis, Missouri, where he is attending this weekend’s televised presidential debate as a Trump supporter, Farage said the comments were “ugly” but that women also made remarks they would not want to see reported.

    Look, this is alpha-male boasting, he said. It’s the kind of thing, if we are being honest, that men do. They sit around and have a drink and they talk like this. [YOU might, but I — and most men I know — do NOT, you fecking shitehead racist misogynist! –blf]

    By the way, quite a lot of women say things amongst themselves that they would not want to see on Fox News or the front page of a newspaper. I’m not pretending it’s good — it’s ugly, it is ugly.

    Farage’s comments echo the initial response of Trump who dismissed the obscene language on a 2005 video tape as locker room banter […]

  203. says

    By the way, quite a lot of women say things amongst themselves that they would not want to see on Fox News or the front page of a newspaper. I’m not pretending it’s good — it’s ugly, it is ugly.

    That is, of course, definitely true, but I doubt that most people of any gender would appreciate the details of their bowel movements on national TV.

  204. says

    “Source: Trump-Backer Burnett Has Warned Staff On Leaks”:

    A powerful Hollywood ally of Donald Trump has threatened staffers who could release potentially damaging outtakes of the show, a source close to Mark Burnett told BuzzFeed News.

    Burnett, the producer of The Apprentice, and his production company have not responded to requests for comment from BuzzFeed News and many other outlets since grotesque outtakes from another show rocked Trump’s campaign Friday, even as former staffers have suggested on Twitter (without clear evidence) that The Apprentice material could be just as damaging.

    But the person familiar with Burnett’s thinking told BuzzFeed News that the producer is backing his star.

    Burnett “is pro-Trump and has made clear to his teams that he will sue anyone who leaks,” the person said….

  205. says

    As other news gets pushed to the back burner thanks to Trump’s “grab them by [P word]” remark, let’s take a look at other news from just this past week or so, news that also illuminates who Trump is.

    He intimated that vets with PTSD are not “strong” enough to “handle” military service in combat zones.

    The State Attorney General of New York ordered the Trump Foundation to cease all fundraising efforts.

    He threatened to start a trade war with China. The Atlantic link.

    He pronounced “Nevada” incorrectly and then lectured an audience in Nevada about how he was right.

    From past bankruptcy depositions we discovered that Trump’s lawyers always meet with him in pairs because Trump lies to them so much that they need a witness at every meeting.

    The super sleazy Trump appeared in yet another Playboy video. CNN link.

    He claimed (again) that the Central Park Five are guilty. They are not.

    He lost about $916 million in 1995 according to his tax returns.

  206. says

    Alt-Right (White Supremacist) blogger, Mike Cernovich is also a guy who thinks rape culture does not exist, and that date rape does not exist: “the hotter the sex, the more closely it resembles rape.”

    That totally despicable guy also wrote a book, “Gorilla Mindset.”

    Guess what, Cernovich has defended Trump’s “grab them by the [P word]” remarks as those of an “alpha male.” Trump advisor General Michael Flynn defended Trump by referring his twitter followers to Cernovich’s book and to Cernovich’s disgusting YouTube video defending Trump. YouTube link.

    Donald Trump Jr. retweeted all of General Michael Flynn’s promotion of Mike Cernovich’s defenses of Trump’s misogynistic attitude.

  207. KG says


    Isn’t it interesting to see which men are outing themselves as misogynist scumbags who talk in the way Trump does on that tape?

  208. says

    Steve Schmidt, a Republican, slams the GOP for “intellectual rot” during an interview with Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press:

    When we look at where this race is today, the presidential race is effectively over. Hillary Rodham Clinton will be the 45th president of the United States. Chuck Schumer will be the majority leader of the United States Senate. And the only question that’s still up in the air, is how close the Democrats will come to retaking the House majority.

    What this exposes though is much deeper, and goes to the Republican Party as an institution. This candidacy. The magnitude of its disgrace to the country is almost impossible, I think, to articulate. But it has exposed the intellectual rot in the Republican Party. It has exposed at a massive level the hypocrisy, the modern day money changers in the temple like Jerry Falwell Jr. And, so this party to go forward, and to represent a conservative vision for America, has great soul searching to do. And what we have seen in the — and the danger for all of these candidates — is over the course the last year, these candidates who have repeatedly put their party ahead of their country, denying what is so obviously clear to anybody who’s watching about his complete and total, manifest unfitness for this office.

    Okay, then. Tell us what you really think.

  209. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Is a flip imminent?
    Where the Repubs completely flip over, to become the actual Liberal Party.
    While the Dems remain stuck in the sludge of attempting to compromise by swimming more to the right, away from the middle, due to Overton Window?
    Something like what happened in mid 20th when Dems were the outright racists and Repubs (still the Lincoln heirs), who decided to flip to get more votes.
    such a flip would be *kablooie**!#*@** (there goes what I used to call a brain)

  210. Jake Harban says

    Today’s New York Times features a simpering article about America’s torture program which acknowledges the lasting damage caused to the innocent victims while still, despite the last 15 years of evidence, bending over backwards on behalf of warmongers and torturers. They make sure to get numerous quotes and opinions from the torturers trying to excuse their actions but nary a suggestion that what happened was a crime.

    That’s why I don’t normally read the Times. Torture is a crime, and everyone responsible for it should be prosecuted from Bush and Obama to the foot soldiers who carried it out and everyone in between.

  211. Jake Harban says

    Addendum: One person has been prosecuted for the torture campaign— John Kiriakou, who blew the whistle on it. Yet another casualty of Obama’s War On Transparency.

  212. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The last time the Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch endorsed a democrat was in 1916, endorsing Woodrow Wilson. They endorsed Hillary Clinton this year.

    Like millions of Americans, The Dispatch editorial board has asked this question more than once: How, in a nation of more than 300 million people, did we end up with two such disliked and distrusted presidential candidates?
    At the same time, we worry that this dismaying choice will cause some voters to throw up their hands and pass on this election. We urge voters to do their homework, cut through the half-truths and lies, and go to the polls with facts.
    For us, the choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is not pleasant, but it isn’t difficult. Republican candidate Donald Trump is unfit to be president of the United States. Democrat Hillary Clinton, despite her flaws, is well-equipped for the job.
    The Dispatch traditionally has endorsed Republican presidential candidates, but Trump does not espouse or support traditional Republican values, such as fiscal prudence, limited government and free trade, not to mention civility and decency. We are disappointed that so many Republican leaders have accommodated a narcissistic, morally bankrupt candidate who is so clearly out of step with those values.

  213. says

    Donald Trump is sniffing again.

    And he answered the question about his “locker room talk” by saying that ISIS cutting off heads is worse.

  214. says

    Ken Starr spent about a billion dollars of taxpayer money prosecuting the Clintons. He did not put either one of them in jail. That was in the 1990s.

    Donald Trump is now reintroducing all of Ken Starr’s failed accusations.

    No matter what mistakes or sleaziness took place in the 1990s, I don’t see how Trump’s approach is going to work to his advantage.

  215. says

    Hillary Clinton is doing very well. She offered facts in her answer about fixing Obamacare.

    Anderson Cooper actually managed to bring Trump to heel a couple of time.

    Trump foolishly attacked Anderson Cooper once, and he continued to interrupt Clinton after being asked to refrain from interrupting.

  216. blf says

    Isn’t it interesting to see which men are outing themselves as misogynist scumbags who talk in the way Trump does on that tape?

    Not just misogynist scumbags but racists and facists. A case in point, the führer of the Ozland nazis, Pauline Hanson and Derryn Hinch argue over Trump’s ‘sexual predator’ scandal (the Granuiad’s edits in {curly braces}):

    Hanson says Donald Trump’s comments were made a decade ago, but Hinch is outraged that ‘as a woman’ the One Nation leader ‘can make any justification for what he has said’

    Pauline Hanson and Derryn Hinch have publicly clashed over the recording of US Republican candidate Donald Trump bragging about using his fame to grope women without their consent.


    The One Nation [Ozland nazis –blf] leader [führer Hanson –blf] and independent senator had taken part in a dual interview with Channel Seven on Monday.

    Their interview became heated when Hanson appeared to downplay the public backlash against Trump, saying Trump’s recorded comments about women were said off camera, and were a private recording.

    Let’s be honest, there are a lot of men out there that say horrific things, probably up to the same standard, Hanson said.

    Hinch interrupted, saying “No Pauline!

    “A normal man in a private conversation would not talk about this. A normal man, Pauline, would never consider invading a woman’s space so much that, in his mind, or to his mates would say, I mean that is sexual assault.”


    “How you as a woman can make any justification for what he has said and what he has done, is just {unbelievable},” he said.

    Hanson replied: Well I didn’t condone what he said, Derryn.

    Hinch continued: “No, you said the people of America will decide. If you are even slightly right then God help the country and God help the world. The man is a sexual predator and he is a disgrace.”


  217. says

    I’ve spent lots of time reporting in countries where winners do imprison losing candidates. Believe me, we don’t want to go there. [from Nicholas Kristof]

    So @realDonaldTrump will ORDER his AG to take certain actions-When Nixon tried that his AG courageously resigned. Trump is dangerous/unfit [from Eric Holder]

  218. says

    One of my favorite parts of the debate:

    “Look, he has now said [about me] repeatedly “30 years this, and 30 years that.” So let me talk about my 30 years in public service. I’m very glad to do so.

    Eight million kids, every year, have health insurance because when I was First Lady, I worked with Democrats and Republicans to create the children’s health insurance program.

    Hundreds of thousands of kids now have a chance to be adopted because I worked to change our adoption and foster care system.

    After 9/11, I went to work with Republican mayor, governor and president to rebuild New York and to get health care for our first responders who were suffering because they had run toward danger and gotten sickened by it.

    Hundreds of thousands of National Guard and reserve members have health care because of work that I did.

    And children have safer medicines because I was able to pass a law that required the dosing to be more carefully done.

    When I was secretary of state, I went around the world advocating for our country, but also advocating for women’s rights to make sure that women had a decent chance to have a better life.

    And I negotiated a treaty with Russia to lower nuclear weapons.

    400 pieces of legislation have my name on it as a sponsor or cosponsor when I was a senator for eight years.

    I worked very hard and was very proud to be re-elected in new York by an even bigger margin than I had been elected the first time.

    And as president, I will take that work, that bipartisan work, that finding common ground because you have to be able to get along with people to get things done in Washington. I’ve proven that I can and for 30 years, I’ve produced results.”

  219. says

    Trump’s awkwardness, and his physical aggression during the debate were noted:

    He lumbered awkwardly around the stage, seemingly unaware of how to stand like a human person. He didn’t seem to know what to do with his face, licking his lips and appearing distracted when he wasn’t the one doing the talking. He loomed over Hillary Clinton, stalking behind her and glaring at her as she answered questions, in a manner that many women might recognize as the sort of way a man who is trying to physically intimidate them might act.

    One Republican woman noted that if that had happened to her in a public place she would have been dialing 911.

    I’m a Muslim, and I would like to report a crazy man threatening a woman on a stage in Missouri. [from Mustafa Bayoumi]
    The photos and video excerpts at the CNN link tell the story very clearly.

  220. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A poll after the sexist revelations, but before the debate, showed Clinton then with a double-digit lead.

    As Donald Trump’s campaign reels over tapes of the presidential candidate’s sexually aggressive comments about women in 2005, the Republican nominee now trails Hillary Clinton by double digits among likely voters, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
    The poll, conducted on Saturday and Sunday but before the second presidential debate, shows Clinton with 46 percent support among likely voters in a four-way matchup, compared to 35 percent for Trump.
    Libertarian Gary Johnson’s support stands at nine percent, and Green Party candidate Jill Stein garners two percent.
    In a head-to-head matchup, Clinton’s lead over Trump grows to 14 percent (52 percent to Trump’s 38 percent.)

  221. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Assessment of Reuters/Ipsos polling from end of September to October 7: As of last week, Clinton’s White House chances 95 percent: Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation

    Even before Sunday night’s vicious presidential debate, Republican Donald Trump was losing ground in many of the states he needs to win to capture the presidency, according to the latest Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation Project analysis released on Monday.
    The project estimates that if the election had been held at the end of last week, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton had at least a 95 percent chance of winning enough states to reach the minimum 270 Electoral College votes needed to become the next president, based on polling between Sept. 30 and Oct. 7.
    Those odds had steadily grown from about 60 percent on Sept. 15 to almost 90 percent on Sept 30. In the last four weeks, her estimated margin of victory has grown from about 14 votes to 118, according to the project.
    The polling did not capture reaction to Trump’s performance in Sunday’s debate or the release on Friday of his 11-year-old sexually aggressive comments about women.
    The results, however, mirrored other estimates of her chances of winning the campaign.
    Statistical analysis outfit FiveThirtyEight, for example, put Clinton’s chance of victory in the election at about 55 percent three weeks ago. Currently, they estimate the odds of a Clinton win at 82 percent. In the same period, the New York Times’ estimates of the odds of a Clinton victory have also increased, from about 70 percent to 84 percent.
    Pennsylvania, Ohio, Nevada and Florida are now leaning toward the Democratic candidate, according to the Reuters/Ipsos project, an online survey of about 15,000 people every week. Iowa is in the too-close-to-call category after being considered a likely Trump state while Arizona has moved from too-close-to-call to the Republican candidate.

  222. says

    From The New Yorker, Trump shows his inner dictator.

    […] “If I win, I am going to instruct my Attorney General to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation,” Trump said. “Because there has never been so many lies, so much deception. There has never been anything like it, and we’re going to have a special prosecutor.”

    He had now turned toward Clinton, and was shaking his finger at her; at various points during the evening, which was set up as a town-hall meeting, he had paced behind her when she walked over to talk to audience members, shadowing her with all the subtlety of one of the agents in “Spy vs. Spy.”

    The finger-pointing and shadowing really offended me.

    […] after he mentioned a special prosecutor, Clinton laughed. She knows all about special prosecutors, after all. The one Trump wanted would be for her e-mail, but there had been a number of them looking into all manner of things in her husband’s Administration—including some of the stories of the women Trump had brought with him—and she had made it through that. As Trump talked about the e-mails, and how she had used an “acid wash” on them, and said, for the second time, that she “should be ashamed,” she stood up and composed her expression with a calm, pitying smile.

    Martha Raddatz, the moderator, began to ask a follow-up, but Clinton interrupted her. “Let me just say, because everything he just said is absolutely false . . .”

    “Oh, really?” Trump interrupted.

    “I’m not surprised,” Clinton continued, and explained that, given the number of lies Trump told, she would never get to talk about her actual policies if she spent all her time “fact-checking Donald.” (That is a fair statement.) She mentioned a fact-checking hub on her Web site, and then said, “It’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country.”

    “Because you’d be in jail,” Trump said. He drew out the last word—jay-ull—like an eight-year-old playground bully’s taunt. […] “Lock her up” chants are heard at almost all his rallies. […] The jail threat is jarring, in part, because it reflects what Trump understands the power of the President to be: he gets to lock her up.

    […] “Hillary for Prison” buttons are for sale on the Trump campaign Web site. And such threats are not new, sadly, in the world beyond America. The use of criminal law as a discretionary political tool is why, historically, some people have wanted to leave other countries to come here. […]

    In what may have been one of his more honest debate moments, Trump said, “I know nothing about Russia”—but he does seem to know that Putin gets to do that sort of locking-up thing to his opponents. Trump doesn’t need to be a puppet of Putin to be a dangerous President. It is enough that he seeks to emulate his authoritarianism. […]

    On another subject, thanks to Nerd for posting updated polling data. Clinton is going to have to fight voter complacency to get the vote out for Democrats.

  223. says

    A summary of Trump’s lies about energy during the debate:

    • Trump: “Energy is under siege by the Obama administration…We are killing, absolutely killing, our energy business in this country.”

    In fact: Total US energy production has increased for the last six years in a row. The oil and gas sector has been booming during the Obama presidency, as have the solar and wind industries. Coal companies have been struggling—but that is largely not the fault of President Barack Obama, just as the oil boom is largely not something he can take credit for.

    • Trump: “I will bring our energy companies back…They will make money. They will pay off our national debt. They will pay off our tremendous budget deficits.”

    In fact: There is no remotely credible economic analysis to suggest that Trump’s proposals for expanded domestic fossil fuel extraction would generate enough additional tax revenue to close the budget deficit, much less pay off the existing national debt. It’s particularly implausible when you consider Trump’s massive tax-cut plans that would make both the deficit and debt considerably larger.

    • Trump: “I’m all for alternative forms of energy, including wind, including solar, etc.”

    In fact: Trump’s energy plan offers nothing to increase solar or wind energy production, but instead focuses on boosting fossil fuels.

    • Trump: “There is a thing called clean coal.”

    In fact: The hope that coal plants’ carbon emissions can be drastically reduced—either through technology that captures and sequesters the emissions or that converts coal to synthetic gas—burns eternal for the coal industry’s cheerleaders. But no one has actually significantly cut emissions at an economically viable coal plant. The promises of “clean coal” projects have not been fulfilled.

    • Trump: “Foreign companies are now coming in and buying so many of our different plants, and then rejiggering the plant so they can take care of their oil.”

    In fact: What is Trump trying to say with this gibberish? We have no idea. […]

    Mother Jones link

    The summary on the Mother Jones site contains addition links that you can reference to back up the “In fact” portions of their fact-checking.

  224. says

    Alex Jones, today:

    I’m never a lesser of two evils person, but with Hillary, there’s not even the same universe. She is an abject, psychopathic, demon from Hell that as soon as she gets into power is going to try to destroy the planet. I’m sure of that, and people around her say she’s so dark now, and so evil, and so possessed that they are having nightmares, they’re freaking out. Folks let me just tell you something, and if media wants to go with this, that’s fine. There are dozens of videos and photos of Obama having flies land on him, indoors, at all times of year, and he’ll be next to a hundred people and no one has flies on them. Hillary, reportedly, I mean, I was told by people around her that they think she’s demon-possessed, okay? I’m just going to go ahead and say it, okay?

    They said that they’re scared. That’s why when I see her when kids are by her, I actually get scared myself, with a child — with that big rubber face and that — I mean this woman is dangerous, ladies and gentleman. I’m telling you, she is a demon. This is Biblical. She’s going to launch a nuclear war. The Russians are scared of her.*


    Imagine how bad she smells, man? I’m told her and Obama, just stink, stink, stink, stink. You can’t wash that evil off, man. Told there’s a rotten smell around Hillary. I’m not kidding, people say, they say — folks, I’ve been told this by high up folks. They say listen, Obama and Hillary both smell like sulfur. I never said this because the media will go crazy with it, but I’ve talked to people that are in protective details, they’re scared of her. And they say listen, she’s a frickin’ demon and she stinks and so does Obama. I go, like what? Sulfur. They smell like Hell.

    * Guess he didn’t get all of the Trump talking points.

  225. says

    “Trump Told Russia To Blame for Hacks Long Before Debate”:

    During Sunday’s debate, Donald Trump once again said he doesn’t know whether Russia is trying to hack the U.S. election, despite Friday’s statement by the U.S. intelligence community pointing the finger at Putin — and despite the fact that Trump was personally briefed on Russia’s role in the hacks by U.S. officials.

    A senior U.S. intelligence official assured NBC News that cybersecurity and the Russian government’s attempts to interfere in the 2016 election have been briefed to, and discussed extensively with, both parties’ candidates, surrogates and leadership, since mid-August. “To profess not to know at this point is willful misrepresentation,” said the official. “The intelligence community has walked a very thin line in not taking sides, but both candidates have all the information they need to be crystal clear.”

    On Sunday, Trump disputed the idea there was any hack at all. “I notice, anytime anything wrong happens, they like to say the Russians are — [Hillary Clinton] doesn’t know if it’s the Russians doing the hacking. Maybe there is no hacking,” Trump told moderator Martha Raddatz of ABC News. “But they always blame Russia. And the reason they blame Russia because they think they’re trying to tarnish me with Russia. I know nothing about Russia.”…

  226. says

    SC @306, maybe Alex Jones felt he had to go even further than Trump did during the debate. Trump called Hillary Clinton “the devil.” According to Jones, she is a demon (or demon-possessed) and she “stinks.” WTF? And this guy is admired by Trump.

    Jones said, “I was told by people around” [Clinton] “she’s demon-possessed.” What a load of BS.

    SC @307, Trump is incapable of learning. He reverted back to his “nobody knows if Russia did the hacking” line even after being briefed with the facts. He is hopeless.

    Richard Engel did such a great job of fact-checking Donald Trump’s comments about Russia. The link is to a video of an interview in which Engel discusses the hacking by Russia, the actions by Russia in Syria, etc. It’s short, to the point, and factual. Trump comes off very badly in Engel’s estimation.

    Earlier, Engel had analyzed Mike Pence’s comments about how to handle the war in Syria:

    I think he [Pence] was actually threatening to stand up to Russia, to bomb the Assad regime, which is an ally of Russia. Russia just moved missile defense systems in. So doing the kind of actions that Pence was suggesting would certainly lead to a military escalation. […] A very hard line against Russia, even threatening potential military confrontation […]

    In other news, Rush Limbaugh’s response to Trump’s “grab them by the [P word]” comments included the claim that college women “write fake stories about being raped.”

  227. says

    A new ad from the Clinton campaign encourages men to stand up and speak out against the way Trump talks about women: YouTube link.

    In other news, Trump mentioned Hillary Clinton’s rich friends several times, and he used their supposed use of tax loopholes to justify his non-payment of federal taxes when he took write-offs. Warren Buffett has responded:

    Answering a question last night about his $916 million income tax loss carryforward in 1995, Donald Trump stated that ‘Warren Buffett took a massive deduction.’ Mr. Trump says he knows more about taxes than any other human. He has not seen my income tax returns. But I am happy to give him the facts.

    My 2015 return shows adjusted gross income of $11,563,931. M deductions totaled $5,477,694, of which allowable charitable contributions were $3,469,179. All but $36,037 of the remainder was for state income taxes.

    The total charitable contributions I made during the year were $2,858,057,970, of which more than $2.85 billion were not taken as deductions and never will be. Tax law properly limits charitable deductions.

    My federal income tax for the year was $1,845,557. Returns for previous years are of a similar nature in respect to contributions, deductions and tax rates.

    I have paid federal income tax every year since 1944, when I was 13. (Though, being a slow starter, I owed only $7 in tax that year.) I have copies of all 72 of my returns and none uses a carryforward.
    Finally, I have been audited by the IRS multiple times and am currently being audited. I have no problem in releasing my tax information while under audit. Neither would Mr. Trump—at least he would have no legal problem.

    Fortune link

  228. says

    Dan Rather’s take on last night’s debate:

    As Donald Trump paced menacingly last night on stage, as he threatened Hillary Clinton with imprisonment even though her actions have already been subjected to the arm of justice, as he batted away concerns over the leaked audio of him boasting of sexual assault as mere “locker room talk”, the cumulative image for millions of votes, I suspect, is that this is a man who, at a fundamental level, does not understand what it means to be an American. And thus, by logical extension, he has no business being president.

    Teddy Roosevelt famously stated: “No man is above the law and no man is below it, nor do we ask any man’s permission when we ask him to obey it.” […]

    Trump by contrast boasts of how the law should not apply to him. As crude as the nouns were in that leaked audio tape, what was most offensive was the relish with which he outlined a host of actions – the verbs – for which the rule of law says he does not have the right to act without consent. Yet his voice reeked of the privilege of a man who believed his celebrity removed any such constraints.

    When he told HIllary Clinton in the debate she would “be in jail” if he were president, those are the threats of a despot, tyrant, or monarch – not a president governed by our Constitution. […]

    I watched part of a Trump rally today. The audience was howling for Clinton to be locked up. Trump is fostering baying-for-blood mobs.

  229. says

    Yes, Trump is pissed off at Paul Ryan.

    Paul Ryan should spend more time on balancing the budget, jobs and illegal immigration and not waste his time on fighting Republican nominee

    In other news, transcripts from an Apprentice episode in 2010 show Trump making disparaging comments about singer Emily West:

    “I assume you’re gonna leave this off, don’t put this shit on the show, you know. But her skin, her skin sucks, okay? I mean her skin, she needs some serious fuckin’ dermatology.”

    Singer Cyndi Lauper, a guest judge on the show at the time, protested Trump’s comments and said that they used “dry stuff” on West’s skin […] But Trump continued to criticize West’s skin.

    “Fuck, That’s Emily, that’s what I’m hearing about? Let me see the other one. I assume you’re not putting this on the show. ‘Cause I don’t wanna destroy the kid’s career.”

    At another moment in the transcript, Trump said that singer Luke Bryan was more attractive than West.

    “Personally, I am, as you probably heard, not a gay man, but I think he’s better looking that [sic] Emily okay?” Trump said, referring to Bryan […]

    And when another judge praised the brochure produced to promote West, Trump said, “You’re obviously not a skin man,” […]

    Lauper confirmed the transcript to the Huffington Post and said it accurately reflected Trump’s comments about West on the show.

    “Of all people to talk about people’s skin!” she added. “What the hell is going on with his?” […]

  230. says

    Good tweets from debate watchers:

    Note that more people are looking up ‘lepo-‘ (as in, “what’s a lepo?”) than ‘Aleppo’. [from Merriam-Webster @MerriamWebster]

    #MuslimsReportStuff Gremlins 2 is the rare sequel that completely deconstructs the franchise. For my money, it’s better than the first. [from Kumail Nanjiani]

  231. says

    What Trump said in an interview with Neil Cavuto on Fox News in the 1990s:

    His [Bill Clinton’s] victims are terrible. He is, he is really a victim himself. The whole group, Paula Jones, Lewinsky — it’s just a really unattractive group. I’m not just talking about physical.

  232. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Unlike the Governor of Florida, Rick Scott, one judge gets it. Extend the voter registration deadline due to an act of nature.

    A judge on Monday extended Florida’s voter registration deadline by one more day, through Wednesday, because of Hurricane Matthew, calling it “irrational” for the state to reject the idea.
    U.S. District Judge Mark Walker granted the Florida Democratic Party’s request for a temporary restraining order, which included a rebuke of Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, who had refused to extend the deadline past its scheduled expiration of 5 p.m. Tuesday.
    “Quite simply, it is wholly irrational in this instance for Florida to refuse to extend the voter registration deadline when the state already allows the governor to suspend or move the election date due to an unforeseen emergency,” Walker wrote in a 16-page order. “If aspiring eligible Florida voters are barred from registering to vote, then those voters are stripped of one of our most precious freedoms.”
    The Democrats’ lawsuit also asserted that the suspension of mail delivery at the height of the storm could result in some voter registration forms not reaching election offices by Tuesday, disenfranchising more Florida residents.
    Walker, 49, who was appointed to the federal bench by President Barack Obama, will hold a court hearing Wednesday in Tallahassee on the Democrats’ request that the voter registration deadline be extended at least until next Tuesday, Oct. 18.
    Scott has rejected repeated demands from Democrats to extend the deadline.

  233. says

    From David Leonhardt of the New York times:

    He lied about a sex tape.

    He lied about his lies about ‘birtherism.’

    He lied about the growth rate of the American economy.

    He lied about the state of the job market.

    He lied about the trade deficit.

    He lied about tax rates.

    He lied about his own position on the Iraq War, again.

    He lied about ISIS.

    He lied about the Benghazi attack.

    He lied about the war in Syria.

    He lied about Syrian refugees.

    He lied about Russia’s hacking.

    He lied about the San Bernardino terrorist attack.

    He lied about Hillary Clinton’s tax plan.

    He lied about her health care plan.

    He lied about her immigration plan.

    He lied about her email deletion.

    He lied about Obamacare, more than once.

    He lied about the rape of a 12-year-old girl.

    He lied about his history of groping women without their consent.

    Finally, he broke with basic democratic norms and called on his political opponent to be jailed […]

    This is the second time I’ve summarized a presidential debate by listing Donald Trump’s untruths, and there’s a reason. The country has never had a presidential candidate who lies the way that he does – relentlessly.

    Yes, virtually every politician, including Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and George W. Bush, strays from the truth at times. To be fair, virtually every human being does. But Trump is fundamentally different.

    His gamble is plain enough: He believes he can fool a lot of the American people a lot of the time. He has decided that lying pays.

    It’s up to the rest of us to show him otherwise.
    More links are embedded in the original, so you can check for yourself the claims about Trump’s lies. Here are just a few of the explanations:

    […] Trump said: “When I watch the deals being made, when I watch what’s happening with some horrible things like Obamacare where your health insurance and health care is going up by numbers that are astronomical 68 percent, 59 percent, 71 percent, ”

    Health insurance premiums for families rose an average 3 percent last year, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Premiums have risen 20 percent from 2011-2016, according to the Kaiser report. However, costs to families have increased even more because families are facing higher deductibles and copayments. [Note that health care costs are always rising. Obamacare slowed the rise.]

    […] Trump said: “Last year we had an almost 800 billion dollar trade deficit.”

    The 2015 foreign trade deficit was $531.5 billion.

    […] Donald Trump said: “And women have respect for me. And I will tell you, no I have not, [have not done the things described in the Access Hollywood tape] and I will tell you that I’m going to make our country safe, we’re going to have borders in our country which we don’t have now.”

    The New York Times reported in May that a Miss USA contestant named Temple Taggart said Trump introduced himself by kissing her “directly on the lips.” After the 1995 video came out on Friday CNN’s Erin Burnett reported that a friend of hers had also been kissed by Trump without consent.
    […] Trump said: “One of the women, who was a wonderful woman, 12 years old, was raped — at twelve. Her client — she represented, got him off. And she’s seen laughing on two separate occasions, laughing at the girl who was raped. Kathy Shelton, that young woman is here with us tonight.”

    Allegation: In 1975, then-27-year-old Hillary Rodham was the court-appointed lawyer for a 41-year-old man accused of raping a 12-year-old girl. Recordings taped for an interview years later on the trial but never published were unearthed by the Washington Free Beacon in 2014. They depict Clinton laughing several times while discussing the case in a casual and cynical way, implying at times that she thinks her client is guilty, according to the Washington Post.

    A 2008 Newsday article said a 1975 affidavit signed by Clinton indicates that she questioned the 12-year-old’s honesty, saying she had made accusations in the past and had sought out older men. Shelton — whose name was not published at the time — said she had not realized that Clinton was the lawyer at the time, but in the Newsday article said she was sure “Hillary was just doing her job.” Shelton told The Daily Beast in 2014 that “Hillary Clinton took me through hell.”

    Public Remarks by HRC: In response to the 2008 Newsday article, a Clinton spokesman said, “As an attorney and an officer of the court, she had an ethical and legal obligation to defend him to the fullest extent of the law. To act otherwise would have constituted a breach of her professional responsibilities.”

  234. says

    Eichenwald, “Dear Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, I Am Not Sidney Blumenthal”:

    I am Sidney Blumenthal. At least, that is what Vladimir Putin—and, somehow, Donald Trump—seem to believe. And that should raise concerns not only about Moscow’s attempts to manipulate this election, but also how Trump came to push Russian disinformation to American voters.

    An email from Blumenthal—a confidant of Hillary Clinton and a man[,] second only to George Soros at the center of conservative conspiracy theories—turned up in the recent document dump by Wikileaks. At a time when American intelligence believes Russian hackers are trying to interfere with the presidential election, records have been fed recently to Wikileaks out of multiple organizations of the Democratic Party, raising concerns that the self-proclaimed whistleblowers group has become a tool of Putin’s government. But now that I have been brought into the whole mess—and transformed into Blumenthal—there is even more proof that this act of cyberwar is not only being orchestrated by the Russians, but that they are really, really dumb.*

    The evidence emerged thanks to the incompetence of Sputnik, the Russian online news and radio service established by the government controlled news agency, Rossiya Segodnya.

    The documents that Wikileaks unloaded recently have been emails out of the account of John Podesta, the chairman of Clinton’s election campaign. Almost as soon as the pilfered documents emerged, Sputnik was all over them and rapidly found (or probably already knew about before the Wikileaks dump) a purportedly incriminating email from Blumenthal.

    The email was amazing—it linked Boogie Man Blumenthal, Podesta and the topic of conservative political fevered dreams, Benghazi. This, it seemed, was the smoking gun finally proving Clinton bore total responsibility for the terrorist attack on the American outpost in Libya in 2012. Sputnik even declared that the email might be the “October surprise” that could undermine Clinton’s campaign.

    To understand the full importance of the story—and how much Putin and his Kremlin cronies must have been dancing with delight—I have to quote the top few paragraphs:

    In a major revelation from the second batch of WikiLeaks emails from Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta it was learned that Hillary’s top confidante Sidney Blumenthal believed that the investigation into Benghazi was legitimate because it was “preventable” and the result of State Department negligence.

    In an email titled “The Truth” from Hillary’s top confidante Sidney Blumenthal, the adviser writing to undisclosed recipients said that “one important point that has been universally acknowledged by nine previous reports about Benghazi: The attack was almost certainly preventable” in what may turn out to be the big October surprise from the WikiLeaks released of emails hacked from the account of Clinton Campaign Chair John Podesta.

    Then came the money quote: “Clinton was in charge of the State Department, and it failed to protect U.S. personnel at an American consulate in Libya. If the GOP wants to raise that as a talking point against her, it is legitimate,” said Blumenthal, putting to rest the Democratic Party talking point that the investigation into Clinton’s management of the State Department at the time of the attack was nothing more than a partisan witch hunt.

    Those words sounded really, really familiar. Really familiar. Like, so familiar they struck me as something I wrote. Because they were something I wrote.

    The Russians were quoting two sentences from a 10,000 word piece I wrote for Newsweek, which Blumenthal had emailed to Podesta. There was no mistaking that Blumenthal was citing Newsweek—the magazine’s name and citations for photographs appeared throughout the attached article. The Russians had carefully selected the “of course” paragraph, which mentions there were legitimate points of criticism regarding Clinton and Benghazi, all of which had been acknowledged in nine reports about the terror attack and by the former Secretary of State herself. But that was hardly the point of the story, “Benghazi Biopsy: A Comprehensive Guide to One of America’s Worst Political Outrages.” The piece is about the obscene politicization of the assault that killed four Americans, and the article slammed the Republican Benghazi committee which was engaged in a political show trial disguised as a Congressional investigation—the tenth inquiry into the tragedy.

    Here is the real summation of my article, which the Russians failed to quote: “The historical significance of this moment can hardly be overstated, and it seems many Republicans, Democrats and members of the media don’t fully understand the magnitude of what is taking place. The awesome power of government—one that allows officials to pore through almost anything they demand and compel anyone to talk or suffer the shame of taking the Fifth Amendment—has been unleashed for purely political purposes. It is impossible to review what the Benghazi committee has done as anything other than taxpayer-funded political research of the opposing party’s leading candidate for president. Comparisons from America’s past are rare. Richard Nixon’s attempts to use the IRS to investigate his perceived enemies come to mind. So does Senator Joseph McCarthy’s red-baiting during the 1950s, with reckless accusations of treason leveled at members of the State Department, military generals and even the secretary of the Army…The consequences, however, are worse than the manipulation of the electoral process. By using Benghazi for political advantage, the Republicans have communicated to global militants that, through even limited attacks involving relatively few casualties, they can potentially influence the direction of American elections.”

    Of course, this might be seen as just an opportunity to laugh at the incompetence of the Russian hackers and government press—once they realized their error, Sputnik took the article down. But then things got even more bizarre.

    This false story was only reported by the Russian controlled agency (a reference appeared in a Turkish publication, but it was nothing but a link to the Sputnik article). So how did Donald Trump end up advancing the same falsehood put out by Putin’s mouthpiece?

    At a rally in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, Trump spoke while holding a document in his hand. He told the assembled crowd that it was an email from Blumenthal, whom he called “sleazy Sidney.”

    “This just came out a little while ago,’’ Trump said. “I have to tell you this.” And then he read the words from my article.

    “He’s now admitting they could have done something about Benghazi,’’ Trump said, dropping the document to the floor. “This just came out a little while ago.”

    The crowd booed and chanted, “Lock her up!”

    This is not funny. It is terrifying. The Russians engage in a sloppy disinformation effort and, before the day is out, the Republican nominee for president is standing on a stage reciting the manufactured story as truth. How did this happen? Who in the Trump campaign was feeding him falsehoods straight from the Kremlin?

    The Russians have been obtaining American emails and now are presenting complete misrepresentations of them—falsifying them—in hopes of setting off a cascade of events that might change the outcome of the presidential election. The big question, of course, is why are the Russians working so hard to damage Clinton and, in the process, aid Donald Trump? That is a topic for another time.

    For now, though, Americans should be outraged. This totalitarian regime, engaged in what are arguably war crimes in Syria to protect their government puppet, is working to upend a democracy to the benefit of an American candidate who uttered positive comments just Sunday about the Kremlin’s campaign on behalf of Bashar al-Assad. Trump’s arguments were an incomprehensible explication of the complex Syrian situation, which put him right on the side of the Iranians and Syrian,s who are fighting to preserve the government that is the primary conduit of weapons used against Israel.

    So no, Mr. Putin, I’m not Sidney Blumenthal. And now that you have been exposed once again, get the hell out of our election. And Mr. Trump—you have some explaining to do.

    * My conspiracy theory, as I’ve mentioned, is that Putin has now come to appreciate how unstable/dangerous Trump is, and is acting accordingly. Of course, the original incompetence could have been Sputnik’s.

  235. says

    Josh Marshall on Twitter: “On Eichenwalds new piece, this actually isn’t the first time this has happened. There have been a number of cases over the last year where stories, quotes, etc which have only appeared in Russian propaganda outlets also showed up on the lips of either Trump or top campaign surrogates like Gen Flynn. The connection is very tight. What the conveyor belt is I don’t know. But what he’s describing this is not the first time.” He says he’ll provide more shortly.

  236. militantagnostic says


    The big question, of course, is why are the Russians working so hard to damage Clinton and, in the process, aid Donald Trump? That is a topic for another time.

    I wonder if it has to do with threat to Russian oil exports if the US gets serious about AGW.

  237. says

    I think Putin’s biggest goal is the destruction of NATO.

    It’s actually kind of funny, in a dark -comedy way, that the Russians and Trump (and various Republican conspiracy theorists) have picked hapless Sidney Blumenthal to carry the load.

  238. says

    Marshall’s hypothesis is that the conduit is the alt-Right, which like the European far-Right is tuned in to Russian messages: “IOW, don’t worry. Trump isn’t working for the Russians. He’s just awash in white supremacist and neo-Nazi propaganda.” I’m not sure how possible it is to cleanly separate all of these forces, especially given some of the people in Trump’s campaign.

  239. says

    It’s actually kind of funny, in a dark -comedy way, that the Russians and Trump (and various Republican conspiracy theorists) have picked hapless Sidney Blumenthal to carry the load.

    For the alt-Right, in a dark-comedy anti-Semitic way.

  240. blf says

    The Grauniad snarks Pence, What could make Mike Pence finally leave the Trump campaign? (all boldfacing in the original)::

    Many Republicans have withdrawn their support of Trump with only 30 days left before the election. What would he have to do to shake his running mate’s faith?

    […] Pence today made it clear that he is committed to riding the Trump train all the way to the end. [… W]e wondered what the GOP nominee would have to do to shake his running mate’s faith.

    Scenario: Trump appears at a campaign speech in Ohio sporting a Hitler mustache.

    Would Pence quit? While initially upset, Pence would eventually cave after hearing spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway tell MSNBC’s Morning Joe that Donald was actually sporting a Michael Jordan mustache.

    Scenario: On Halloween, Trump is caught distributing candy laden with poison to children.

    Would Pence quit? Pence would be thrilled to see Donald subverting what the conservative Christian candidate views as a harmful pagan tradition.


    Scenario: Trump appears on Meet the Press and urinates on Chuck Todd’s leg.

    Would Pence quit? Pence would release a statement claiming that Trump probably mistook Todd for a fire hydrant due to his small stature and red hair. […]


    Scenario: Trump and his son Eric are caught digging up Alexander Hamilton’s grave.

    Would Pence quit? Pence would appear alongside Trump in a video explaining that the exhumation of one of America’s founding fathers was no more disgraceful than liberals’ attempts to claim the leaders of the American revolution were black and Hispanic via the medium of a Broadway show.


  241. says

    Lynna @ #281 above:

    Alt-Right (White Supremacist) blogger, Mike Cernovich is also a guy who thinks rape culture does not exist, and that date rape does not exist: “the hotter the sex, the more closely it resembles rape.”

    That totally despicable guy also wrote a book, “Gorilla Mindset.”

    Guess what, Cernovich has defended Trump’s “grab them by the [P word]” remarks as those of an “alpha male.” Trump advisor General Michael Flynn defended Trump by referring his twitter followers to Cernovich’s book and to Cernovich’s disgusting YouTube video defending Trump.

    In addition to Farage’s comments quoted by blf @ #275 above, his response to the debate:

    The interim Ukip leader attended the debate in St Louis, Missouri and praised Mr Trump following his controversial performance in the televised clash. He told Sky News: “I thought he was like a big silverback gorilla prowling the studio.

    “I don’t think he did it in a particularly aggressive way. I think what you saw tonight is the way he is. He took control. He dominated Hillary Clinton. She was very much on the back foot all evening.”…

    I continue to be amazed at all of the threads Trumpism joins together: racism, misogyny, homophobia, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, Putinism, hypernationalism, Identitarianism, speciesism, authoritarianism, plutocratic economic policy, the most patriarchal elements of the Christian Right, eugenics, Evo Psych,…

  242. says

    Glenn Beck:

    Every person, each of us must decide what is a bridge too far.

    Mike Lee has obviously reached that point, where the moral compromise his party is asking him to make is simply beyond what is acceptable.

    It is not acceptable to ask a moral, dignified man to cast his vote to help elect an immoral man who is absent decency or dignity.

    If the consequence of standing against Trump and for principles is indeed the election of Hillary Clinton, so be it. At least it is a moral, ethical choice….

    Glenn Beck.

  243. says

    Day of the Short Tweets – in the last hour, from Trump:

    “Our very weak and ineffective leader, Paul Ryan, had a bad conference call where his members went wild at his disloyalty.”

    “Despite winning the second debate in a landslide (every poll), it is hard to do well when Paul Ryan and others give zero support!”

  244. quotetheunquote says

    @Salty Current #330
    Oh, I would love to see his list of “every poll” that he won – citation needed, I think, Mr. Trump.

    What a loser.

    @Salty Current #331 – Because, as we all know, Trump has been so restrained up to this point. (What kind of America is he going to be fighting for? I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know…)

  245. says

    blf @326, all Trump would have to do in every instance is apologize. Even a half-assed apology would satisfy Pence.

    Pence made a point of highlighting the Christian nature of forgiveness in citing his willingness to ride the Trump train to Misogyny Central.

  246. says

    Article about Trump’s rally in Wilkes-Barre yesterday:

    After a dismal weekend marked by leaked audio about vagina grabbing, a deluge of defections from Republican officials, a snorting and incoherent debate performance, and some deflating poll numbers, Donald Trump went to Pennsylvania as planned for a rally in Wilkes-Barre on Monday night. So I followed him, thinking I might find his core supporters feeling weak in the knees. Instead I discovered an arena full of deplorables—unbowed, undiscouraged, standing by their ogre of a candidate.

    Very little had changed since the last time I visited a Trump rally, back in the primaries. Outside the venue, a woman dressed as Trump led a woman dressed as Hillary around by a metal chain attached to a neck shackle. Inside, a man wore a T-shirt that read, “She’s a [redacted – SC]. Vote for Trump.” The crowd began to chant “CNN sucks!” all on its own, before anyone had even prompted it to. A solemn recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance bled into “USA! USA!,” which morphed into that old standby: “Lock her up! Lock her up!”

    Scanning the mob of several thousand as best I could, I counted fewer than 10 nonwhite people. (I’d seen nearly as many nonwhite folks at the gas station a few blocks away when I filled up my tank.) Every speaker up on stage was white. Chris Cox, the 48-year-old founder of Bikers for Trump, began his remarks by crowing, “You might remember us from Cleveland, at the RNC, where we stood toe to toe against Black Lives Matter.” He later added a pun that delighted the gathering: “At least we’re not a basket of deportables.”

    When Cox rejoined the crowd, I asked him how he felt about the elected Republicans who’d distanced themselves from Trump in the past day or two. “They will be weeded out,” he said. “When Donald Trump is elected, they’ll be the first to go. The people are taking over the Republican Party.”

    When Trump at last took the stage, it was as though his wretched weekend had never happened. He didn’t mention the Access Hollywood disaster at all. Instead, he played his old hits: “The Snake.” We’re gonna build that wall. Look at those dishonest reporters, they’re so dishonest, I have to tell you, such disgusting people. He read out poll numbers he liked (ones from idiotic online insta-polls) and said the ones he didn’t like must be “crooked” and “rigged” (ones from legit, scientific polls).

    There were, however, a few new wrinkles since last I’d boarded the Trump train. Lately, Trump’s been urging his supporters to be freelance election observers in “certain communities”—even soliciting them to sign up for such duty on his website. He made further leering insinuations along these lines. “I hear such reports about Philadelphia,” he said. “I hear these horror shows, and we have to make sure we’re protected. We have to make sure this election isn’t stolen from us and isn’t taken from us. And everyone knows what I’m talking about.”

    Trump also reprised a version of his debate breakout moment, when he threatened to toss Hillary in jail. It was back in July, at a rally in Colorado, that Trump first went from dismissing the “lock her up” chants to indulging them: “I’ve been saying let’s just beat her on Nov. 8. But you know what, I’m starting to agree with you,” he said then. By Monday night in Pennsylvania, the concordance was complete. “Lock her up is right,” he barked when the chants began, to the rabid glee of the crowd.

    There was even a new nickname. Longtime Hillary confidante Sidney Blumenthal has become “Sleazy Sid.” Not bad! Not even wrong! But the target of the epithet is telling. This is no “Low-Energy Jeb” or “Lyin’ Ted.” The average voter has no clue, and doesn’t care, who Blumenthal is. It’s Trump’s dead-enders—the ones still trudging out to rallies to cheer on a confirmed cretin and then trudging home to wallow in the latest on Breitbart—who thrill to this stuff in their shrinking bubble, in their hate-filled arenas, in the grimy dusk of a dying campaign.

  247. says

    SC @325, good point. Blumenthal gets the anti-semitic juices flowing. It’s sometimes difficult for me to remember how anti-semitic Trump’s alt-right supporters are.

    SC @327, OMG. Farage’s “gorilla” comment is so revealing. Toxic.

    SC @330, yeah, Trump is not going to let the Paul Ryan thing go. It’s a good thing Ryan isn’t fat, or Trump would go after that as well. This morning, Ryan’s office released a statement saying that he still thinks Trump can win, and that he still endorses Trump for president. He’ll probably have to grovel a lot more than that to placate Trump.

    As for Trump’s mention of polls showing him winning the debate in a landslide, that’s just bonkers.
    Post-debate poll: Clinton has 5-point lead over Trump

    The Second Debate Probably Didn’t Help Trump, And He Needed Help

    A CNN poll of debate watchers found that even though most voters thought Trump exceeded expectations, 57 percent of them nevertheless declared Clinton the winner, compared with 34 percent for Trump.

    SC @332, I noticed that Trump is mentioning Bernie Sanders a lot. He did it again at his rally yesterday. So what’s the deal? Is he trying to push the story that Sanders was “cheated” out of the Democratic nomination to foment dissension among Democrats?

  248. says

    Trevor Noah did a great job of skewering the “locker room talk” excuse from Trump. The whole video is well worth watching.


    It feels like more people are focused on he said”‘pussy.” It’s not about that. It’s about him saying he forces himself on women.

    You tell me what’s worse. A guy who says,”‘Last night I dined with a lovely lady, and immediately afterwards I escorted her back to her residence and proceeded to caress her genitals despite her lack of invitation.”

    Or is this one worse? “Oh, man, last night, I was rolling with this bad bitch and I was like, yo, you gonna let me smash that ass? And she said no. And I was like okay, no pussy for me.” Which one is worse?

    Now, don’t get me wrong. Neither of them is ideal. But one of them is crude, and the other is against the law. […]

    He wasn’t in a locker room. He was in a TV interview. If you conduct “locker room talk” everywhere, it’s not the locker room. It’s you, mother fucker!

    Noah also noted that, after Trump and Billy Bush got off the bus, Billy put “his pimp hat on.”

    Noah also disparaged the guys using the women in their lives to justify their outrage. “The Trump tape shouldn’t offend you on behalf of females,” Noah said. “It should offend you as a human being.”

  249. says

    The Washington Post Editorial Board calls Donald Trump Putin’s Puppet.

    […] Once again, the GOP nominee played the part of Vladi­mir Putin’s lawyer. “She doesn’t know if it’s the Russians doing the hacking,” he said of Ms. Clinton. “Maybe there is no hacking.” Mr. Trump is receiving classified intelligence briefings, so he is certainly aware of the evidence that hackers backed by Moscow have stolen email and other records from the DNC and tried to penetrate state electoral systems. So why does he deny it? Mr. Trump’s advocacy on behalf of an aggressive U.S. rival, and the opaqueness of his motivation, is one of the most troubling aspects of his thoroughly toxic campaign. […]

    he has defended Mr. Putin and his crimes throughout his campaign. He brushed off the fact that journalists and other opponents of the Russian ruler have been murdered and claimed Russia had not invaded Ukraine. He has repeatedly called Mr. Putin a better leader than President Obama.

    In Sunday’s debate, Mr. Trump reeled off a series of false statements about Russia’s intervention in Syria, saying it was aimed at the Islamic State even though almost all of Russia’s bombs have fallen on rebel groups fighting the regime of Bashar al-Assad, or on civilians.

    He then rejected the statement by running mate Mike Pence that “provocations by Russia need to be met with American strength” and the United States should consider using “military force to strike military targets of the Assad regime” if Russia’s bombing of Aleppo continued. (Abjectly, Mr. Pence on Monday attempted to deny that he said those words in the vice-presidential debate.) “I think it would be great if we got along with Russia because we could fight ISIS together,” Mr. Trump said at Sunday’s debate.

    Here’s what we don’t know: Does Mr. Trump propose this collaboration with a regime obsessed with thwarting and weakening American power out of ignorance and naivete, or because of personal and business interests he has not disclosed? Mr. Putin surely knows the answer to that question — but U.S. voters do not.

  250. says

    Samantha Bee grabs Trump by the [bleep].


    […] that 2005 Access Hollywood tape wasn’t just lewd remarks, Trump was literally explaining a time-tested strategy for sexual assault. In fact, take a Tic Tac and grab them by the [P word] is the closest thing to a plan Donald Trump has described this entire election!

    But, the vilest thing on the tape isn’t Trump boasting about snatch snatching, aggressively pursuing an adulterous hook up or “take her furniture shopping” isn’t some sort of super sexy foreplay, it’s the way these two drooling hyenas treat actress Arianne Zucker, who’s only mistake was doing her job and greeting the adolescent boner bus. […]

  251. says

    Super creepy doofus and bone-deep racist Paul LePage, governor of Maine, is backing Trump up gleefully.

    “We need a Donald Trump to show some authoritarian power in our country and bring back the rule of law,” […].

    LePage was seemingly unconcerned by Trump’s comments about forcing himself on women in a 2005 video that resurfaced last week, but conceded that Trump is not the “ideal guy I’d want my daughter going after.”

    Lauren LePage, the Maine governor’s daughter, was hired in August by the Trump campaign as state coalitions director.

    Talking Points Memo link.

  252. blf says

    Nearly 90% of New Jersey children tried as adults since 2011 were black or Latino:

    Mostly black minors requested to be prosecuted as adults, a WNYC analysis found when comparing the US juvenile detention system with that in Germany
    Minors in New Jersey who commit crimes like robbery, drug trafficking or homicide can be tried as adults. But that only happens at a prosecutor’s request. And according to an analysis by WNYC Radio, most of their requests are for black minors […]

    Minors in some other countries — like Germany, which WNYC visited — never get such long sentences for robbery, and would never be prosecuted as adults. But it is allowed in every US state.

    In New Jersey, court data obtained by WNYC found 692 minors tried as adults in the past five years. The youngest were 14 years old when charged. Almost 90% are black or Latino.

    […] The most common crime? Robbery.

    Laura Cohen, director of the Criminal and Youth Justice Clinic at Rutgers Law School, says white children commit the same crimes as black children. National research shows prosecutors do not seek to try white children as adults at the same rates.


    In Germany, people who commit crimes under age 21 can be treated as juveniles, and the longest sentence a minor can get is 10 years.

    “He’s still a 14- or 15-year-old boy even if he killed another person,” says Jorg Jesse, who runs prisons in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. “We would never say because he killed another person, we know have to react in a way we would a 30-year-old.”

    Prisons in Germany are supposed to mirror the outside world. Officials say that helps inmates learn how to live a life without crime when they get out.

    Inmates have access to knives in kitchens and electric saws at their jobs. Male and female inmates at Neustrelitz prison for adolescents can kiss and hold hands.

    About 30% of Germany’s young prisoners return to jail within three years. In America, more than 80% of offenders under age 24 are re-arrested within four years.

  253. says

    The fracturing of the Republican Party is bolstering the power-mad dreams of the Alt-Right. Trump’s white nationalist followers see the difficulties within the party as their chance to make significant inroads. They want, for example, to fill President Trump’s cabinet with Alt-Right luminaries.

    […] On Saturday, The Guardian attended a meeting of the white nationalist American Freedom Party in Los Angeles, where chairman William Johnson held forth about the ideal members for a Trump cabinet.

    “I want Jared Taylor [of American Renaissance] as UN Ambassador, and Kevin MacDonald [an evolutionary psychologist] as secretary of health and Ann Coulter as homeland security,” Johnson said, according to the Guardian.

    […] having individuals like Taylor, who runs a white nationalist magazine and conference series, in the White House was a “pipe dream.”

    Now, however, he said there was hope.

    “If Trump wins, all the establishment Republicans, they’re gone,” Johnson said, according to the Guardian. “They hate him! So who’s left? If we can lobby, we can put our people in there.” […]

    Talking Points Memo link

  254. blf says

    Muslims respond to Donald Trump’s debate performance with #muslimsreportstuff:

    Trump angered Muslims by seeming to suggest that they were the ones responsible for countering the rise of Islamophobia in America
    Gorbah Hamed, an undecided Muslim voter from Missouri, had asked Trump and Hillary Clinton what they would do to “help people like me deal with the consequences of being labelled a threat to the country”.

    Trump agreed that Islamophobia existed: “And that’s a shame.”

    But, he added, “whether we like it or not, there is a problem” with Islamic extremism.

    His proposed solution was that Muslims should “come in and report when they see something going on”.

    Moustafa Bayoumi, a writer and associate professor of English at Brooklyn College at the City University of New York, joked on Twitter that he was Muslim — “and I would like to report a crazy man threatening a woman on a stage in Missouri”.


    Bayoumi’s tweet went viral, sparking the hashtag #MuslimsReportStuff […]

    ● “Hey! I’d like to report a guy who talks in locker rooms about women private parts and links it to ISIS”
    ● “Hi, I’m Muslim & want 2 report a man in St. Louis butchering English by stringing adjectives & passing them as sentences”
    ● “My husband’s name is…..wait for it……MOHAMED.”


    Trump has repeatedly and baselessly said people saw bombs and “suspicious behaviour” before the San Bernardino shooting.


    Of the temporary ban on Muslims entering the US he has previously proposed, Trump said it was now called “extreme vetting”.

    Twitter didn’t let that pass without comment, either.

    Emily Nussbaum, the New Yorker’s television critic, defined it as “like heavy petting, but heavier”.


    ● “the only thing that needs ‘extreme vetting’ is Donald’s nasal cavity”

  255. says

    The over-incarceration of people of color also affects voting. It disenfranchises 1 in 5 black citizens.

    In Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia, more than 20 percent of the voting-age black population will be legally banned from voting this November.

    That estimate comes from a new report by the Sentencing Project, which looked at the effect of felony disenfranchisement laws on Americans’ voting rights.

    The report estimated that more than 6.1 million Americans will be unable to vote in the 2016 election. That’s about 2.5 percent of the overall voting-age population, and it includes more than 7.4 percent of the black voting-age population. [….]

    Vox link

  256. says

    Today, Hillary Clinton focused on her policies to tackle poverty:

    […] It is targeted exclusively at the poor, and the extreme poor in particular, with no money spent on the middle class or rich. […]

    Clinton is calling for a change in the refundability threshold of the child tax credit. […] Currently, the poorest American families can’t claim the credit, which is a mainstay of the tax returns of most middle-class families. That’s because households that make less than $3,000 a year — the truly, desperately poor — are excluded entirely, and households making under $9,666.67 can’t get the full credit.

    Clinton would change the law so that families start getting the credit with the first dollar they earn. That would effectively increase the tax refunds of the poorest families with children. In addition, Clinton would double the credit for children 4 and under, something that helps both poor and middle-class families with young kids […]

    The plan is not a complete answer to the increase in extreme poverty that’s occurred over the past two decades, but it’s a very good start. And it takes the US closer to the system most other rich countries use of simply giving every family a child allowance of a few thousand dollars per kid every year, no strings attached. […]

    […] Originally, the credit didn’t fight poverty at all. It was first enacted in 1997, as a $500 nonrefundable credit. That meant that only families with a positive income tax burden (which almost always excludes poor families, who don’t earn enough to pay income taxes) benefited.

    The Bush tax cuts of 2001 doubled the credit to $1,000, where it remains today […] The refundable part phased in for families that earned at least $10,000 a year. […] That let poor families benefit from the credit for the first time, but very poor families were still shut out.

    The Obama stimulus package of 2009 lowered the $10,000 threshold to $3,000, and didn’t index it to inflation. That greatly expanded the number of poor families eligible for the credit. This was initially a temporary measure, but in 2015 the administration succeeded in making the measure permanent as part of a tax deal with congressional Republicans.

    […] The University of Michigan’s Luke Shaefer and Johns Hopkins’ Kathryn Edin have found that the share of families living on less than $2 per day in cash income per person more than doubled from 1996 to 2011. That suggests that more and more families are living on less than $3,000 a year in taxable earnings, and are thus excluded from the child tax credit.

    […] Clinton and other policymakers looking to expand the child credit, like Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), have tended to instead move the phase-in threshold to $0, and increase the phase-in for families with young kids. […]

    […] reducing the refundability threshold to $0 would cost about $16.5 billion more over 10 years than merely keeping it at $3,000. That’s a relative pittance for a policy that, […] “would target additional CTC benefits on very low income families: just over three-quarters of families with children in the lowest income quintile and about a quarter of those in the second quintile would receive larger credits.” […]

    […] Crafting a policy specifically designed to give more money to people in extreme poverty is a compelling way to signal that this really is a matter she takes seriously, and that she understands something needs to be done to account for the failures of welfare reform. […]

    This proposal signals to House Democrats that expanding the child tax credit, and more generally doing tax breaks for poor and middle-class families, is something Clinton wants to prioritize in that scenario. It’s hard to imagine this stuff passing with Paul Ryan still in office as House speaker. But if Nancy Pelosi gets the job, it becomes possible. […]

    Vox link

  257. blf says

    Paul Ryan can’t escape from Trump’s shipwreck of the Republican party:

    To half of his own party, Ryan will forever be the man who betrayed Donald Trump. To the rest, he’ll be the man who stood aside while the place went to pieces

    Today’s Republican party makes no sense.

    It spent decades as the party of national security before nominating a man who both defends Russia and pretends to know nothing about the place.

    As the party of small government and constitutional liberty, it’s not clear why its members feel so good about locking up political opponents like Hillary Clinton.

    To cap it all, the party is currently led by a reality TV star who destroyed his own campaign with a TV interview.

    But all those contradictions look simple compared to the pretzel shape that now passes for the strategy of its leadership.

    House speaker Paul Ryan was a reluctant endorser of Donald Trump. Now he is a reluctant non-endorser of the same.

    Ryan told his own Republican caucus on Monday that he would no longer defend Trump or campaign with him. He urged all the rats to leave the sinking ship, telling them “to do what’s best for you” to save their House majority. He said his own mission was to stop Clinton controlling the House and Senate, as well as the White House.

    But there is no escape from this shipwreck, as Trump himself made clear on Twitter. Paul Ryan should spend more time on balancing the budget, job and illegal immigration and not waste his time on fighting Republican nominee, said the same nominee.


    To make matters worse for the Trump campaign, after squandering a year without a real organization, it has no voter turnout operations of its own. Instead it is reliant on the RNC’s ground game, which is now either ambivalent about its presidential candidate or shifting decisively towards the House contests.

    That might help explain the ominous statements issued by Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, who warned that Ryan was booed by Trump fans in his home state over the weekend. She went on to say that she knew of GOP lawmakers who forced themselves on young women and were hypocrites for shunning Trump.


  258. says

    SC @351 and blf @353, keep going Donald. There are still a few of your fellow Republicans that you have not yet alienated.

    As for Kellyanne Conway’s defense of Trump: why is it that other people’s bad behavior is supposed to excuse Trump’s bad behavior? (End of comment 353)

    Hely, Kellyanne, name those GOP lawmakers. We want to see the Republican Party implode even more dramatically.

    They’re all screwed no matter what they do. John McCain should just go ahead and salvage whatever parts of his integrity are left. It’s all going downhill fast for Republicans:

    […] The DCCC-commissioned survey tested head-to-head ballots, pitting a generic Democrat against three types of Republican candidates.

    Against a Republican “who continues to endorse Donald Trump” the Democratic margin moves from a 7-point advantage to a 12-point advantage.

    Similarly, against a “Republican candidate who had supported Trump previously, but just withdrew their support” the Democratic margin moves from a 7-point advantage to a 12-point advantage.

    Finally, even against a “Republican candidate who never formally endorsed Donald Trump and now says they won’t vote for him” the Democratic margin moves from a 7-point advantage to a 10-point advantage.

  259. says

    Malcolm Nance talked with Rachel Maddow about how Russian leaders have manipulated Donald Trump and his aides. Nance has a new book out: “The Plot to Hack America: how Putin’s cyberspies and Wikileaks tried to steal the 2016 election.”

    I don’t always agree with Nance, nor do I always like his analysis of national security issues, but in this case I think he is spot on.

    The interview is quite good. The video is about 4 minutes long. It includes Nance’s debunking of a claim Trump made during the debate that no one knows if it was the Russians doing the hacking. Very clear debunking.


  260. blf says

    This should not surprise many readers here (at least in general, albeit some of the specifics might), US ranks lower than Kazakhstan and Algeria on gender equality (International Day of the Girl Child is today, 11-Oct):

    Study to mark International Day of the Girl shows poorest countries offer fewest opportunities for girls, but world’s richest nation also disappoints
    Niger was named the worst country in the Girls’ Opportunity Index, compiled by Save the Children to mark International Day of the Girl.

    The US came 32nd in the index due to its low representation of women in parliament, high teenage pregnancy rates and and its record on maternal deaths. Fourteen women died per 100,000 live births in the US in 2015, a similar number to Uruguay and Lebanon.


    The article goes on to discuss the situation in a selection of other countries. A few tidbits:

    ● “[T]he bottom 20 countries were among the world’s poorest states.”

    ● “Rwanda has the highest proportion of female MPs in the world [64%].”

    ● “Nepal [has] relatively strong lower-secondary school completion rate for girls [86%] similar to Spain’s.”
      “In Nepal […] there is a mandatory minimum local budget allocation for women, children and so-called lower castes, and affirmative action to increase the number of female teachers.”

    ● “Sweden was named the best country in the world to be a girl, followed by Finland, Norway, the Netherlands and Belgium.”

  261. says

    Analysis of Trump’s use of Russian propaganda, from Josh Marshall:

    […] News from Russian propaganda sources are pervasive in the alt-right/neo-Nazi web. As a secondary matter we know from Adrian Chen’s work that there are a decent number of faux ‘pro-Trump’ accounts on Twitter that are actually run from troll farms operated by Russian intelligence services. By whichever path, Russian propaganda is ubiquitous on the alt-right/racist web – particularly on Twitter, Reddit, 4chan and similar sites.

    It happens that we know the Trump world is awash in the alt-right/neo-Nazi web. After all, that’s where all the retweeting of #WhiteGenocide accounts and the like comes from. So anything is possible. Perhaps there’s a more complex explanation. But the simplest one is that it’s organic. Russian propaganda stories from outlets like RT, Sputniknews and other similar sites spread freely on the alt-right/white supremacist web. And that’s where the Trump camp lives. So it’s entirely plausible that that’s why material that appears only on these Russian propaganda sites shows up so frequently in Trump’s speeches.

    In other words, don’t worry. The Trump campaign isn’t infiltrated by Russian intelligence (probably). They’re just awash in neo-Nazi and white supremacist propaganda. […]


  262. says

    A stellar member of the Worst Family – “Eric Trump: My Father Bragged About Groping Women Because of His ‘Alpha Personality’”:

    Since Donald Trump’s comments about groping women were made public last week, the fallout has been pretty significant…. But at a campaign appearance on Monday, Eric Trump defended his father’s tarnished reputation by dismissing the importance of the remarks altogether and using a little dash of men’s-rights-approved logic to excuse them.

    “I think it’s locker room banter,” he said, according to the Colorado Gazette. “I think sometimes when guys are together they get carried away, and sometimes that’s what happens when alpha personalities are in the same presence. At the same time, I’m not saying it’s right. It’s not the person that he is.”…

  263. says

    You know, I vaguely remember this.

    “Trump called Tyson rape conviction ‘a travesty’ in 1992 radio interview”:

    When boxing star Mike Tyson was convicted of rape in February 1992, Donald Trump called the verdict a “travesty” in an interview with Howard Stern and said it was actually Tyson who was the subject of physical advances from women.

    Trump vigorously and very publicly defended Tyson during his rape trial in early 1992, proposing that Tyson be allowed to pay off victim Desiree Washington with money from future boxing fights instead of serving time in prison. Speaking with “NBC Nightly News” on Feb. 21, 1992, he said Tyson was “railroaded in the case” and suggested the victim wasn’t a victim at all. Trump also told “New York” magazine Tyson relayed to him that the victim “wanted it real bad.”

    In a February 1992 interview on the “Howard Stern Show” reviewed by CNN’s KFile, Trump lamented how the rape accusation had affected Tyson.

    “It’s so sad because I’ve known Mike more or less from the beginning,” said Trump. “He started off having his first fights at my place and he’s had his biggest fights at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City. He was so incredible and the last few years he’s just not been the same — number one he’s not been the same fighter, he’s not been the same man, he’s not been the same anything.”

    “The truth is he’s been very loyal to me, he has most of his fights at my places,” added Trump. “He does best at my places in terms of his best fights and he’s been great and I just hate to see what’s happened to him. It’s a travesty, it’s a travesty.”

    The Trump campaign did not respond to a request to comment on Tyson for this story.

    Trump touted Tyson’s support in Indiana earlier this year, the state where Tyson was convicted.
    “Mike Tyson endorsed me,” Trump said. “I love it. He sent out a tweet. Mike. Iron Mike. You know, all the tough guys endorse me. I like that, OK?”

    In the 1992 Stern interview, Trump explained his plan to keep Tyson out of jail.

    “My concept is for the state of Indiana, maybe $20 million, a lot of money,” Trump said. “The proceeds from his next fight, his next two fights for rape victims, and I think that’s a lot better than having Mike Tyson serve jail for 10 years or something. I think it’s gonna do a lot more in terms of a cause.”

  264. says

    Donald Trump’s Alt-Right buddies think they know who leaked the “grab them by the [P word]” video: It was “the Jews.”

    Donald Trump’s supporters in the white nationalist movement have found who is to blame for the tape in which the Republican nominee brags about sexually assaulting women: “The Jews.” Trump’s racist supporters are claiming that Republican consultant Dan Senor leaked the tape, and are responding with anti-Semitic attacks. […]

    The Daily Stormer is a virulently anti-Semitic website that celebrates Nazism, purports to document the “Jewish Problem,” and attacks “kikes.” Editor Andrew Anglin wrote an October 11 post claiming that “we knew whoever leaked the tape was a Jew. And a #NeverTrump Jew advisor to Paul Ryan is currently being pointed at as being responsible, Dan Senor.” He called Senor “a #NeverTrump kike” […]

    If we lose this election, it is going to be because of this [P word]-grabbing tape. And having it be known that it was a Jew is extremely important. One of the GOP’s Jews being responsible makes it all the better.

    Because if we lose, this country is going to enter a new age of anti-Semitism.

    The 35% or so of the country that is hardcore pro-Trump is going to know that it wasn’t “liberals” that defeated Trump, but traitors within the party who abandoned him. And they are going to want to know why that happened.

    And there is only one answer:

    The Jews did it.

    […] Senior Trump adviser A.J. Delgado recently retweeted an endorsement of Trump from The Right Stuff.

    Radio host and infamous racist David Duke wrote an October 11 tweet with Senor’s name in parentheses: “Looks like top Paul Ryan advisor (((Dan Senor))) probably leaked the #TrumpTape–America, are you at least beginning to see a pattern? […]

    Media Matters link

    As you probably noticed, the Alt-Right sources also managed to include a smear against Paul Ryan. Steve Bannon (of Breitbart), Trump’s current campaign CEO has a never-ending obsession with ousting Paul Ryan. According to leaked emails, he said that Ryan would by out of office by springtime.

    This connection the Alt-Right made between Paul Ryan and the supposed “Kike” leaker of Trump’s “grab them by the [P word]” video must really warm Bannon’s heart.

    And, it looks to me like Bannon is manipulating Trump in some of the anti-Ryan Twitter sprees of late.

  265. says

    Sixteen national security experts put together a warning about information that originated from Russian hacks. They aimed most of their warning at the media, asking the media to take greater care when reporting on or publishing material that is traced back to Russian hackers.

    As organizations such as WikiLeaks and DCLeaks continue to release emails that appear to originate from individuals close to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and her campaign, a group of former top national security officials and outside experts are warning “members of the media to stay engaged and to think critically about the facts they consume and disseminate.”

    The group notes that “what is taking place” in terms of the leaking of private emails “follows a well-known Russian playbook,” and “it is imperative that we focus on the broad disinformation campaign that is already underway.” […]

    National security and cybersecurity experts have been saying for months that Russian intelligence services were most likely involved in the hacks — and the U.S. government has now formally accused them of attempting to “interfere with the U.S. election process.”

    Yet right-wing media, including one of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s closest allies, Roger Stone, have cheered for Russian espionage and the hacking of private emails of American citizens. […]

    A group of 16 former top national security officials and outside experts have penned a letter saying they are “concerned that an ongoing Russian influence operation is targeting the 2016 U.S. election.” The signatories of the letter note that American “debates on critical national security issues will be targeted” by Russian intelligence “in an effort to sway public opinion away from our national interests.”

    The experts conclude, “There is no amount of short-term partisan gain or perceived media scoop that could justify that outcome,” imploring “members of the media to stay engaged and to think critically about the facts they consume and disseminate.” […]

    Media Matters

    Scribd link to letter

  266. says

    Congressman Blake Farenthold from Texas was just interviewed by Chris Hayes. Hayes asked him if there was anything Trump could do that would lead him to rescind his support, and he said Yes. When Hayes followed up by asking if, for example, Trump said he really likes raping people, would that do it. Farenthold stumbled through his answer, actually saying yes, he would have to “rethink” it. How alienated do you have to be from your basic decency to get to the point at which you would say this? These are actually people in positions of political power. It’s chilling.

  267. says

    “Breitbart Boss Stephen Bannon Bragged in 2015: ‘I’m Trump’s Campaign Manager'”:

    A year before Donald Trump hired Breitbart News’ executive chairman to be his presidential campaign’s CEO, Stephen K. Bannon boasted, “I’m Trump’s campaign manager” via email.

    Bannon’s emails to his former Hollywood writing partner Julia Jones show he at least had reason to believe he had Trump’s ear. In emails reviewed by The Daily Beast, Bannon brags about his political influence.

    “I’m Trump’s campaign manager,” Bannon wrote in an email sent on August 30, 2015 to Jones, who provided the email to The Daily Beast.*

    “OMG! Is that confidential or can I tweet it :)),” Jones replied later that day. “I am soooo impressed. Really! He couldn’t have picked a better person. OMG!”

    “Confidential,” Bannon responded. “Don’t u ever read breitbart–its trump central.”

    “Confidential it is,” she wrote. “I thought [Rick] Santorum was your buddy. Isn’t Trump a little far left for you?”

    “Santorum, [Ted] Cruz , [Jindal], Dr. [Ben] Carson, Carly [Fiorina] all great,” he wrote back. “Trump is a nationalist who embraces [Sen. Jeff Sessions’s] immigration plan.”

    And it’s believed Bannon is rooting on Trump’s new antagonism of Republican leaders who have dropped him, a scorched-earth strategy that threatens a full-blown GOP civil war. Bannon previously called Republican Party’s congressional leaders, a bunch of “c[***]s” in 2014.

    Before officially jumping aboard the Trump train, Bannon was a key figure in helping to mainstream racists who call themselves alt-right. “[Breitbart News is] the platform for the alt-right,” Bannon once boasted.

    It’s that alliance that has led Jones (who once wrote a Shakespearean hip-hop musical with Bannon, and who as recently as late August was calling him a close friend and “like family”) to reconsider her relationship with him.

    “I don’t want to know him anymore,” Jones told The Daily Beast on Tuesday. “I don’t care if I lose the friendship anymore.”

    “I’m so disgusted at what Bannon has become,” she continued. “He’s been behind Trump’s campaign for over a year.”

    * I don’t know if this has been authenticated.

  268. says

    In other Bannon oppo…

    “The Hill: Trump Campaign CEO Stephen Bannon Gave ‘Explicit Orders’ For Breitbart Staff To ‘Destroy’ Paul Ryan”:

    Newly released internal emails provided to The Hill* show that Stephen Bannon, CEO of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign and former Breitbart News executive chairman, had directed Breitbart staff to attack Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI), declaring that the “long game is [ Ryan] gone by spring” in a preview of the Trump campaign’s current war with the congressman.

    The Hill reported that although “Bannon’s disregard for Ryan has been recorded in other reports, this is the first time emails have emerged that showed [Bannon] setting a timeframe for trying to get rid of the Speaker.” With Bannon now “giving Trump advice as his campaign CEO,” the nominee “on Tuesday unleashed a series of tweets directing scorn at the Speaker, who on Monday said he would no longer defend Trump.”

    The Hill also reported that a former Breitbart staffer claimed “Bannon has Alex Jones-level paranoia about Paul Ryan,” referring to the Trump ally and conspiracy theorist radio host, and that he “thinks Paul Ryan is part of a conspiracy with [billionaires] George Soros and Paul Singer,** in which elitists want to bring one world government”:…

    * I don’t know if these have been authenticated, either.
    ** But of course.

  269. says

    “San Antonio officers to be disciplined for wearing Trump hats”:

    The San Antonio police chief said his officers who wore Donald Trump campaign hats on the airport tarmac Tuesday will be disciplined.

    Chief William McManus said the officers wearing the “Make America Great Again” hats violated department policy. “SAPD officers are charged with protecting the entire community,” McManus said. “The officers displayed poor judgment.”

    In a video Trump posted to Twitter, more than a dozen officers are seen around the Republican presidential candidate as he’s about to depart San Antonio. Officers can be heard saying, “Thank you sir” and seen giving the thumbs up sign before they walk away with the red baseball caps on.

    San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor said in a Twitter post she was deeply disappointed by the officers’ lack of judgment. “Police must be above politics & serve everyone equally… Everything they do should send that message and today’s actions did not.”

  270. says

    “Donald Trump Unleashes on Paul Ryan, John McCain in O’Reilly Factor Interview”:

    Donald Trump visited The O’Reilly Factor on Tuesday night and laid into Republican critics like Paul Ryan, saying “I wouldn’t want to be in a foxhole with a lot of these people.”

    Trump told Bill O’Reilly that a tweet he sent earlier in the day referring to taking off his “shackles” referred to his Republican opponents, “some of the people that are weak and ineffective” and were “being nasty to the nominee.” Still, he said he doesn’t want Ryan’s support anymore, anyway: “If you sneeze he calls up and announces, ‘Isn’t that a terrible thing.’”

    Trump wrote off the 2005 tape as “salty language” and accused John McCain of having “the dirtiest mouth in all of the Senate.” He once again referred to his language as “locker room talk” and said “most people have heard it before and I’ve had a lot of women come up to me and say, ‘Boy, I’ve heard that and I’ve heard a lot worse than that in my life.”

    He indicated that Paul Ryan was bad on “open borders and amnesty” and the budget, saying, “Frankly the only one that Obama negotiates well with is Paul Ryan.” When O’Reilly asked how he would get along with Ryan and other Republican critics if he is elected president, he said it would be fine, and that maybe Ryan would be “in a different position” than House Speaker….

  271. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Some GOP donors are asking Trump for their money back.

    Two big-money donors who have given or raised tens of thousands of dollars for Donald Trump are livid at the Republican presidential nominee and are asking for their money back, according to a bundler who had raised money for Trump.
    “I cannot express my disappointment enough regarding the recent events surrounding Mr. Trump,” one donor wrote to a Trump fundraiser in an email with the subject line “Trump support withdrawal.”
    “I regret coming to the Trump support event, and in particular allowing my son to be a part of it,” the donor, who had given to and raised money for Trump, said. “I respectfully request that my money be refunded.”
    Senior Trump spokesman Jason Miller said the campaign is “unaware of any donors making such a request.”


  272. says

    I won’t link to the article at The Hill referred to in #373 above since there seems to be something going on with the site, but here’s a segment:

    In the Dec. 1 email, Breitbart’s Washington editor, Matt Boyle, suggested to Bannon via email that a story promoting Ryan’s planned overhaul of the mental health system* would be a good way to “open a bridge” to Ryan.

    Bannon wasn’t keen on the idea.

    “I’ve got a cure for mental health issue,” Bannon wrote to Boyle. “Spank your children more.”

    “I get that,” responded Boyle, “but this is a place where we can open a bridge to Paul Ryan — we’re playing the very long long long game Steve.”

    Replied Bannon: “Long game is him gone by spring.”

    Last night on Lawrence O’Donnell, Katie Packer – an anti-Trump Republican – speculated that Trump never felt accountable because he didn’t get enough spankings as a child. It’s sad and scary how some people think. A large part of what drives authoritarianism is the abuse of children.

    * Evidently this came about after the Planned Parenthood shooting. Because that was purely a matter of mental health and not political at all.

  273. says

    “Hillary Clinton is proposing a policy to tackle deep poverty”:

    On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton unveiled what is arguably among the most important policies she’s announced during her entire presidential campaign. It is an ambitious but politically attainable plan that will lift huge numbers of families with children out of poverty. It is targeted exclusively at the poor, and the extreme poor in particular, with no money spent on the middle class or rich.

    Specifically, Clinton is calling for a change in the refundability threshold of the child tax credit. That sounds like a technical change, but it has tremendous ramifications. Currently, the poorest American families can’t claim the credit, which is a mainstay of the tax returns of most middle-class families. That’s because households that make less than $3,000 a year — the truly, desperately poor — are excluded entirely, and households making under $9,666.67 can’t get the full credit.

    Clinton would change the law so that families start getting the credit with the first dollar they earn. That would effectively increase the tax refunds of the poorest families with children. In addition, Clinton would double the credit for children 4 and under, something that helps both poor and middle-class families with young kids, and she’d make the credit phase in much faster for families with kids in that age range.

    An analysis by Chuck Marr and Chloe Cho of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities estimates that Clinton’s plan will lift 1.5 million people above the poverty line, and bring another 9.4 million closer to the poverty line. It would increase the incomes of 5.2 million people living in deep poverty.

    The plan is not a complete answer to the increase in extreme poverty that’s occurred over the past two decades, but it’s a very good start. And it takes the US closer to the system most other rich countries use of simply giving every family a child allowance of a few thousand dollars per kid every year, no strings attached….

  274. says

    “Trump’s tax plan would shower the rich, Clinton’s would soak them”:

    When it comes to taxes, voters face a stark choice this November, a pair of new reports shows.

    Hillary Clinton wants to raise taxes by $1.4 trillion while Donald Trump would cut them by $6.2 trillion.

    The wealthy would be the big winners under his plan, the centrist Tax Policy Center said Tuesday, with the top 1 percent seeing an average tax cut of $215,000. The rich would bear nearly all of her tax increases, the group said, with the top 1 percent seeing their tax bills climbing by an average $118,000.

    Trump would cut business taxes by more than $2.6 trillion; Clinton would increase them by $130 billion.

    Her plan, with a mix of tax hikes on the rich and tax cuts for certain targeted groups further down the income ladder, would make the tax code a lot more complex. Trump’s plan would simplify the code, the group said, though he would introduce new complications, especially when it comes to taxing small businesses.

    “They really couldn’t be more different,” said Len Burman, head of the group. “In almost every meaningful respect, these plans are mirror images.”

    Clinton’s tax plans would technically reduce the debt by $1.6 trillion over the decade, once reduced interest payments on the debt are included. But she wants to use that money to pay for a host of new spending initiatives, which means her plans overall would be a wash for the budget, said Burman.

    “Clinton’s proposal is clearly designed not to have much effect on the budget,” he said. “It’s a net tax increase, but I think she’s earmarked all of that to pay for new spending, so she’s been criticized by budget hawks as not doing anything to get us off our unsustainable fiscal path but at least she doesn’t make things worse.”

    By contrast, Trump’s plan would balloon the debt by $7.2 trillion, once increased interest payments are included. Trump has said he’d offset the cost of his plan with spending reductions though he hasn’t said how, and has ruled out cutting large chunks of the budget.

  275. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Kaine called out Trumps remarks for what they are:

    Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine once again rebuked Donald Trump’s lewd comments about groping women, saying “there is no doubt that the behavior described in the video is sexual assault.”
    “You can’t grab people’s genitals,” Kaine told radio host Solomon Jones Tuesday on 900 AM WURD in Philadelphia. “You know, that’s sexual assault, I mean it’s clear.”
    Kaine also criticized Trump and his supporters’ attempts at defending the 2005 comments in the days since they were mined from the archives of Access Hollywood. Trump has dismissed his boasts about kissing and grabbing women without invitation as “locker room talk,” while former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said “men at times talk like that.”
    Not so, said Kaine. “It’s what sexual abusers do, but it’s not what men do,” he said.

  276. says

    “Trump Senior Adviser Promotes Trump Endorsement From Leading Anti-Semitic Hate Site”:

    A.J. Delgado, a senior adviser to Republican nominee Donald Trump, retweeted a Trump endorsement from an anti-Semitic website that started an online campaign harassing Jewish people.

    Members of the “alt-right” and white nationalist movement have been heavily supporting Trump’s campaign, and the candidate and his team have been courting members of the movement, including by appearing in white nationalist media, refusing to denounce them, and retweeting their messages.

    On October 11, Delgado retweeted the anti-Semitic website The Right Stuff, which wrote: “At this point anyone not insane enough to want a war with Russia should vote Trump.”

    The tweet prior to the message that Delgado retweeted was an anti-Semitic attack on Republican strategist Dan Senor. The site’s Twitter account header image is of Confederate soldiers.

    As Media Matters noted, The Right Stuff is a white nationalist blog that frequently leads anti-Semitic attacks on Jewish people.

    The Right Stuff started the virulently anti-Semitic “parenthesis meme” in which Jewish names are surrounded by parentheses — “(((name)))” — often to target them for online abuse on social media. The Anti-Defamation League has added the symbol to its online database of hate symbols, with CEO Jonathan Greenblatt stating: “The echo symbol is the online equivalent of tagging a building with anti-Semitic graffiti or taunting someone verbally.”

    Enoch wrote in a Reddit AMA on the “Alt Right” subreddit that “if there had been a more stingent [sic] restriction on Jews entering academia and the media and lobbying politically many problems would not have arisen. The country was basically given over to Jews after 1965 and they had lots of power even before that.”

    He added: “I think the idea that race is the foundation of a nation is the key. And yeah, I stand by that statement. I don’t care if a country has a social healthcare policy or something like that as long as it is white.”

  277. says

    Four Republicans – Fischer, Thune, Garrett, and Byrne – who unendorsed Trump this weekend have now re-endorsed.

    I’m not sure I understand what an endorsement or pledge to vote for him in these circumstances is even supposed to mean. It’s hard to watch this ritualized self-sacrifice, but it’s clear that the so-called endorsements are made under duress. They’re not meaningful statements of support.

  278. says

    The biggest newspaper in Utah, The Salt Lake Tribune, has endorsed Hillary Clinton.


    Clinton’s devotion to making the world a better place for the less fortunate, especially children, has been the core of her whole career. She sees the threats of terror abroad, gun violence at home and climate change globally and has plans to address all of that, and more.

    She recognizes the unfairness of those who lack access to health care and those at the short end of extreme economic inequality. She would make tax policy more equitable and work to help the poor climb out of their misery. […]

    Utah Republicans were perceptive enough to reject Trump in their March presidential caucus voting. Were they to support Clinton now, even by the narrowest of pluralities, it would send a strong message to the Republican Party to turn their backs on Trumpism and to work with Clinton where they can, rather than devote themselves to blocking her every move. […]

    There’s also a “Mormons for Hillary” group that has members beyond the borders of Utah.

  279. Saad says

    SC, #382

    Four Republicans – Fischer, Thune, Garrett, and Byrne – who unendorsed Trump this weekend have now re-endorsed.

    Taking this at face value and them at their word, what the hell does this actually mean?

    Three days ago:
    “Sexual assault is horrible! We can’t support a candidate like that.”

    “Actually, never mind. We like sexual assault now. Three days ago we made an error.”

  280. says

    A rightwing group, Citizens United, that is raising money for Trump is using deceptive fundraising tactics. One of the worst is aimed at nursing home residents:

    […] One mail piece, which had [current Trump deputy campaign manager David] Bossie’s name on it, said the relative had sent Citizens United a $50 check which was lost in the mail.

    “I am writing this letter to ask for your forgiveness and understanding with a recent mix-up with the Post Office,” Bossie wrote. “As a result, we were unable to receive your $50 donation.”

    “Citizens United was the victim of a clerical mistake that temporarily decreased our ability to receive all of our mail,” the letter continues. “I would say I am shocked but what do you expect from a government run organization!” […]

    “If you can see it in your heart to re-send your $50 in the included postage-provided envelope it would be a blessing to us,” the letter concludes. […]

    The woman who reported this scam, Jennifer Bell, has a relative with dementia in an extended care facility (equivalent of hospitalized). Family members had taken the patient’s checkbook away, so they know she didn’t make a political contribution to anyone. Also, how could Citizens United know that a check had been sent but had not arrived. It doesn’t make any sense.

    There were five fundraising mailers from Citizens United in the mailbox of the elderly patient.

    The Daily Beast link

  281. says

    Creepy Donald Trump barged in on naked and partially naked teenagers during preparation for the Miss Teen USA Pageant.

    Four former contestants in the 1997 Miss Teen USA pageant told Buzzfeed News that Donald Trump walked into the dressing room while they were changing clothes.

    “I remember putting on my dress really quick because I was like, ‘Oh my god, there’s a man in here,'” Mariah Billado, former Miss Vermont Teen USA, told Buzzfeed News.

    Billado said that Trump said something along the lines of, “Don’t worry, ladies, I’ve seen it all before,” when he walked into the room. […]

    Three other former contestants in the Miss Teen USA pageant confirmed to Buzzfeed News that Trump walked into the dressing room, but they asked to not be named. One former contestant said that Trump’s decision to enter the dressing room was “shocking” and “creepy,” according to Buzzfeed News. […]

    In this case, Trump did not make physical contact with any of the girls according to those that were interviewed.

    Trump has bragged about his behavior at the pageant before:

    I’ll tell you the funniest is that I’ll go backstage before a show and everyone’s getting dressed. No men are anywhere, and I’m allowed to go in, because I’m the owner of the pageant and therefore I’m inspecting it. … And you see these incredible looking women, and so I sort of get away with things like that.

    That quote is from a Howard Stern show.

  282. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Saad @385,

    Taking this at face value and them at their word, what the hell does this actually mean?

    If verbal gymnastics were an Olympic sport, the gop would’ve swept the medals this year.

  283. says

    Trump is at a rally in Ocala, FL, ranting about Paul Ryan and how there’s “something sinister going on” but he’s going to figure it out because he always figures things out.

  284. says

    Taking this at face value and them at their word, what the hell does this actually mean?

    Three days ago:
    “Sexual assault is horrible! We can’t support a candidate like that.”

    “Actually, never mind. We like sexual assault now. Three days ago we made an error.”

    It’s like this strange, ritualized spectacle of self-abasement. It’s pretty disturbing to watch – almost like a show trial. I don’t know if it makes it more or less disturbing that all these people have on the line personally is winning or losing an election and perhaps some fallout in their professional life and relationships with colleagues. I mean, it’s not like they’re facing torture, exile, imprisonment, or death. It’s weirdly craven.

  285. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    SC #392. I’ll give the video two thumbs up. Ballot is on my desk Mr. President.

  286. blf says

    Donald Trump has lost tens of millions on Scottish golf courses, accounts show: “Records for resorts in Aberdeenshire and Ayrshire conflict with FEC filings in the US — and reveal he has avoided paying UK corporation tax on the two courses”.

    On the FEC part of the story:

    There is also an apparent discrepancy between the accounts and his filings last year to the US Federal Election Commission (FEC) […].


    In his filings last year to the US FEC, Trump declared that Turnberry generated income of $20.4m (£16.6m today) in 2014 and the Aberdeenshire course earned him $4.4m (£3.6m today).

    His UK company accounts showed hefty losses on both resorts in that year, of £1.1m at the Aberdeenshire course and £3.6m at Turnberry. […]

    There are considerably more details at the link.

  287. says

    blf – that is a very thorough article. It’s uncanny how virtually every new piece of evidence confirms the patterns.

    Donald Trump has lost nearly £26m ($31.8m) building his golfing empire in Scotland, his company accounts show – a sum that means the Republican presidential candidate has avoided paying any UK corporation tax on either of his two resorts.

    The latest accounts filed to the UK authorities for Trump’s two resorts, in Aberdeenshire and Turnberry in Ayrshire, also show he has sunk more than £102m ($125m) of his own money into both businesses, despite losing increasing sums on both investments. The accounts suggest he may never make a profit on either resort, although the Trump family insist Turnberry will return to profitability in the short to medium term.

    Good luck with that.

    From an election perspective, none of it is good for Trump, but probably the worst (by which I mean best) is what you quoted about the FEC filings. His surrogates always say he doesn’t need to release his taxes because he put so much information in the FEC filings. We all know he lies like mad, but to have concrete evidence of a specific lie in those filings is great.

  288. blf says

    Canada’s ex-prime minister labels Trump a ‘sexual predator’:

    Kim Campbell — the country’s first and only female PM — warns Republican’s comments could mean troubling consequences for women across the US
    “He has described himself as a sexual predator,” Kim Campbell said of Trump’s 2005 leaked Access Hollywood tape. “The behaviour he has admitted to and celebrated in himself is predation.”


    As justice minister in the early 1990s, Campbell was instrumental in reforming Canada’s sexual assault laws, and in an interview on Tuesday, she lashed out Trump’s remarks on kissing women and grabbing them without permission. “Unconsented sexual touching is a sexual assault,” Campbell told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. “And somebody who does that, who thinks he has a right to do that, who does it thinking that it’s a reflection of his value because he’s a celebrity, et cetera, I mean that is predation.”

    Trump’s comments could hold wider, more troubling implications for women across the United States, warned Campbell. “He has released a wave of misogynistic rhetoric in the guise of being opposed to political correctness,” she said. “The giving permission of people to express the worst misogynistic attitudes is incredibly dangerous and very, very worrisome.”


  289. says

    Watching video clips of Trump’s most recent rallies reminds me of how he projects to escape an unbearable psychic situation. His comments about how he’s ashamed of and embarrassed by the US, how stupid and low the country is, how weak Clinton and the Republican Party are, how Clinton has tremendous hate in her heart, how angry he’ll be at voters if they don’t make him the victor,… – it’s all just the externalization of his self-hatred, self-shame, self-berating. It’s a child who’s internalized an abusive parent’s voice. A sad and horrible thing to see played out on such a public stage.

  290. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The Parliament in a State in Australia came to a conclusion as to Trump’s candidacy

    A state Parliament in Australia on Thursday unanimously passed a motion that described U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump as “a revolting slug unfit for public office.”
    Jeremy Buckingham, a lawmaker from the minor Greens party, introduced the motion to the New South Wales Legislative Council, the Parliament’s upper house.
    “This house … agrees with those who have described Mr. Trump as a ‘revolting slug’ unfit for public office,” the motion said.
    The house “condemns the misogynist, hateful comments” made by the Republican candidate about women and minorities, including the remarks revealed by media at the weekend “that clearly describe sexual assault,” the motion said.
    Had any lawmaker objected to the motion, it would have been struck off the list of parliamentary business. Because there was no objection, the motion was recorded as having been unanimously agreed to by the Sydney-based house.
    “It’s a great that all sides of Australian politics, from conservatives to liberals to Greens, agree that Donald Trump is a ‘revolting slug’ and completely unfit for public office,” Buckingham said in a statement.
    “It’s clear that all reasonable and decent people find Donald Trump’s behavior obnoxious and that the world is hoping American voters reject his politics of hate,” Buckingham said.

  291. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Addendum to SC #399. It’s now four women.

    Four women accused Donald Trump in articles published Wednesday of having touched them in an inappropriate manner, adding to the growing list of women who say Trump has insensitively treated them as objects over several decades.
    The New York Times quoted two women as describing public encounters during which Trump grabbed or kissed them inappropriately.
    Separately, the Palm Beach Post quoted a Palm Springs, Fla., woman as saying Trump groped her 13 years ago at Mar-a-Lago, his estate in Palm Beach.
    And a People magazine staff writer reported Wednesday that at Mar-a-Lago in 2005, Trump pushed her against a wall and was soon “forcing his tongue down my throat.”

  292. KG says

    I mean, it’s not like they’re [Republicans re-endorsing Trump] facing torture, exile, imprisonment, or death. – SC@390

    Oh, it’s worse than that. They would lose power and money!

  293. blf says

    UN human rights boss says Trump would be a global danger as president (the Granuiad’s edits in {curly braces}):

    United Nations’ Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said Wednesday: ‘If Donald Trump is elected{…} he would be dangerous from an international point of view’
    UN high commissioner for human rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein cited Trump’s views on vulnerable communities including minorities and his talk of using torture, banned under international law, as “deeply unsettling and disturbing”.

    “If Donald Trump is elected on the basis of what he has said already […] I think it is without any doubt that he would be dangerous from an international point of view,” Zeid told a news briefing in Geneva.


    Zeid, in a landmark speech in The Hague last month, accused Trump of spreading “humiliating racial and religious prejudice” and warned of a rise of populist politics that could turn violent.

    “I always believe that it’s incumbent on leaders to lead and to lead in a way that is ethical and moral,” Zeid said on Wednesday, when asked about Trump.

    “The use of half-truths is a very clever political device. Because as every propagandist knows, you allow the listener to fill in the rest.“


    “We have to be on guard to see that in the end vulnerable populations, populations at risk do not again see their rights deprived because of a view that is in the ascendancy based on false premises,” Zeid said.

  294. Saad says

    There’s a clip from 1992 where Trump talks to a 10-year old girl, then turns to the camera and says “I’m going to be dating her in ten years. Can you believe it?”


  295. says

    Rush Limbaugh talks consent (you have to listen to the audio at the link to get the full mocking tone):

    You know what the magic word, the only thing that matters in American sexual mores today is? One thing. You can do anything, the left will promote and understand and tolerate anything, as long as there is one element. Do you know what it is? Consent. If there is consent on both or all three or all four, however many are involved in the sex act, it’s perfectly fine. Whatever it is. But if the left ever senses and smells that there’s no consent in part of the equation then here come the rape police. But consent is the magic key to the left.

  296. says

    Update to #279 above re “Apprentice” producer Mark Burnett:

    Mark Burnett, the executive producer of NBC’s “The Apprentice,” is tamping down claims that he a supporter of Donald Trump amid calls for him to release footage from the reality TV show that starred the GOP nominee.

    “Given all of the false media reports, I feel compelled to clarify a few points,” he said in a statement to POLITICO Wednesday. “I am not now and have never been a supporter of Donald Trump’s candidacy. I am NOT ‘Pro-Trump.’ Further, my wife and I reject the hatred, division and misogyny that has been a very unfortunate part of his campaign.”

    POLITICO reported Tuesday that Burnett has “long been privately appalled” by Trump’s campaign.

    MGM, the company that owns Burnett’s production company and “The Apprentice,” has repeatedly said it is unable to release the footage for legal reasons. They reiterated their inability to release the tapes Wednesday.

    Civil rights attorney Gloria Allred and two California women’s political groups have called on both MGM and Burnett to release footage from “The Apprentice” following reports that Trump made inappropriate comments to people on set, particularly women. The interest in those tapes has spiked since The Washington Post obtained a 2005 video from “Access Hollywood” of Trump talking about groping women without their consent.

  297. says

    “Donald Trump Apologizes to Serbia for Yugoslavia Bombing”:

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has issued an apology for his country’s decision to bomb Serbia during Bill Clinton’s tenure at the White House.

    U.S. and NATO allies launched aerial campaigns against the faltering Yugoslav regime, targeting ethnic Serb troops, in 1995 and 1999. The first attack was carried out in support of groups in Bosnia and Herzegovina, seeking independence from Belgrade, while the second was in support of similar forces in Kosovo.

    “The bombing of Serbs, who were our allies in both world wars, was a big mistake,” Trump told the Serbian weekly magazine Nedeljnik for an article published on its website Thursday.* “Serbians are very good people. Unfortunately, the Clinton administration caused them a lot of harm, but also throughout the Balkans, which they made a mess out of.”

    Bill Clinton, husband and supporter of Trump’s rival in the presidential race, Hillary Clinton, was the U.S. president throughout the violent collapse of Yugoslavia, which saw ethnic Serb militias engage in ethnic cleansing against predominantly Muslim groups in the former Yugoslavia. The bombings caused hundreds of civilian casualties but also stopped the advance of Serb troops.

    Trump did not specify how he would have handled the situation differently, but vowed to have “a new policy with the Balkans” if he wins the election.

    The NATO bombings are still a controversial issue in Serbia, which has been transformed since the collapse of the Communist Yugoslav Federation into an EU candidate country.

    The bombings are a strong factor keeping Serbia officially neutral from military alliances, be it with NATO or Russia, when all of its neighbors, with the exception of Bosnia, are either in NATO or applying for membership. Russia has sought to cultivate stronger military and political ties with Serbia as a result, and it is currently sending troops on their first military drill on the Balkans, in Serbia.

    Politically, the Kremlin has often tried to play up the religious bond between the two Orthodox countries, as well as their role in fighting Nazism in World War II. When U.S. Vice President Joe Biden visited Serbia earlier this year he was met by hundreds of protesters chanting “Vote for Trump.” The protest was organized by one of Serbia’s biggest pro-Russian powers, the nationalist Radical Party.

    Gordy continues: “This is rhetoric consistent with both the Russian line on Serbia and the U.S. far-right who view the Yugoslav conflict in terms of a battle between Christianity and Islam. They look at Bosnia and Kosovo and argue that this is when Islamists got their first foot in Europe….

    * I don’t know if this has been confirmed.

  298. says

    “Donald Trump’s D.C. Hotel Shows His Brand Is Sinking Along With His Poll Numbers”:

    It’s now pretty clear that Donald Trump has been using his presidential campaign to promote his various business ventures. Remember when he touted his Turnberry, Scotland, golf course as a beneficiary of Great Britain’s exit from the European Union this summer? But if Trump hoped his campaign would elevate the value of his brand, it looks like just the opposite is happening.

    Take Trump’s latest, most lavish venture: the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., which has become a focal point for grievances against the unconventional Republican presidential candidate.

    The 263-room five-star hotel in the historic Old Post Office building opened last month. But even with a prime location near the White House, swanky interiors, and aggressive promotion by the candidate himself, empty rooms have forced the hotel to reduce rates during a peak season. At the same time, the hotel has lost two planned restaurants, Hispanic employees are making claims of discrimination, and protesters are gearing up to do whatever they can to cause trouble for the hotel.

    Some of the issues even predate Trump’s presidential campaign: When the government inked a 60-year, $200 million lease with Trump in 2012, rival hoteliers took the unusual step of warning Uncle Sam that the deal could turn into yet another Trump business failure.

    Those warnings look increasingly prophetic. While the break-even rate on the hotel rooms is more than $750 a night, by some estimates last weekend rooms could be had for under $500 per night — at a time when rival hotels were sold out weeks ahead of time. In his bid to win the lease, Trump promised to offer luxurious suites to lure business execs and diplomats, but many of the international elite appear to be avoiding it.

    For a five-star hotel in downtown Washington to have vacancies during major IMF meetings is a little like having empty rooms when the Super Bowl is in town. “The reason why there were vacancies is the political atmosphere. People don’t want to go there for fear that they would be asked, ‘Why are you staying here?’” says Ada Pena, a travel agent with ABA Travel in Washington, D.C.

    The explosive tape of Trump boasting of sexually assaulting women will only “aggravate that feeling, especially when there are other options,” she says.

    The hotel not only has a prime location and swank interiors, it boasts a branded Ivanka Trump spa, and tourist attractions related the building’s old function as a post office. But none of that seems to be attracting guests.

    “You don’t see taxis stopping by like they do at the Marriott or the Willard, which are nearby,” says Pena, who works in the area. “It’s dark. There is no feeling of hospitality.” Locals aren’t eating at the restaurant for lunch either, she says.

    “It’s a shame that it is called Trump because it’s a beautiful property. But overall, his brand is hurting,” the travel agent adds.

    In their April 16, 2012, letter to the GSA protesting the acceptance of Trump’s bid, Hilton’s lawyers warned that the government was setting itself up for a “devastating failure for the historical landmark with a business partner whose history of repeated failure demonstrates that it cannot be counted on to deliver what it promises.” Eighteen pages of the letter detailed Trump’s business failures and lawsuits against him.

    Trump was forced to put more than $40 million of his own money into the deal after his first business partner, private equity firm Colony Capital, backed out. Deutsche Bank, the troubled German bank, is putting up $170 million for the project….

    The article also notes:

    In the recently released June deposition of Trump in his suit against Zakarian, the candidate said that his brand has not been hurt by his controversial campaign and may have been enhanced. “In Florida, at Mar-a-Lago [his Palm Beach private club] it’s had a very positive impact. It’s actually the best year we’ve ever had,” he said. Trump said he received more votes in the Republican presidential campaign than any person in history, which could be a boon for his hotel business.

    I read the transcript of the deposition, and it appeared to me that Trump believed the campaign would help his businesses, but in a very specific way. I don’t know if anyone else has remarked on it, but there’s one telling exchange in which the attorney pointed him to evidence of a 40% decline at one of his properties (Mar-a-Lago, possibly). He implausibly denied knowing anything about it, or about how the campaign is affecting his businesses generally. Then, the lawyer asked about whether DC was similar in terms of being a diverse area, and he answered that the area around the hotel (and presumably the clientele) would be different because it’s wealthier. I got the impression from this and some other comments during the deposition that he thought that any negative reaction to his racism would be limited because they’re luxury properties patronized generally by rich white people, and that the negative reaction would be offset because Trump’s racist appeals would be attractive to white elites. That’s not happening.

  299. says

    399 and 403, it’s kind of amusing to think that Steve Bannon was caught saying that Trump’s campaign team was going to make a “Cosby” out of Bill Clinton, but without the Clinton campaign lifting a finger, it is Trump that is turning into a “Cosby.” No doubt the revelations of Trump assaulting women will go on for some time.

  300. says

    SC @413, that is so perfect. Taking business, taking money away from Trump is so appropriate. And to think that the downturn in business is all his own fault. Schadenfreude moment.

  301. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Excellent article by Janet Reitman in the Rolling Stone: The Year of the Woman: How Women Will Take Down Donald Trump. First few paragraphs are quoted below, but the whole article is worth a read.

    There’s hardly a woman in America who hasn’t been nauseated by this presidential election. That’s an atypical statement from an investigative journalist who prides herself on objectivity – but, as we’re constantly reminded, this is not a typical election.

    I wasn’t particularly shocked hearing Donald Trump brag about sexually harassing and groping women on a hot-mic tape leaked Friday to the Washington Post. What did shock and disgust me was the feigned indignation of Republican legislators like Paul Ryan and Mike Lee, who’ve been steadily legislating against women for years. Likewise with the panicked exit (Trexit?) of fellow Republicans such as Kelly Ayotte, who only a week earlier felt obliged to call Trump – whose campaign has long trafficked in bigotry – a “role model,” and John McCain, who got behind Trump even though the nominee refused to call him a war hero. But after Trump admitted to chasing a married white woman – representing a key GOP voting bloc – McCain dropped the charade.

    Possibly just as bad has been the parade of good men – husbands, brothers, dads, sons, friends, co-workers – who’ve insisted that Trump’s “lewd talk” is not what guys discuss in the locker room, as Trump claims. Fine. How about on construction sites, or trading floors, or during client dinners, or poker games, or anywhere else where dudes trash talk with other dudes at women’s expense? It doesn’t have to be predatory, just objectifying. That’s how a woman becomes an un-person, which then permits a man to feel entitled to treat her like an “it,” as Trump referred to Days of Our Lives’ Adrienne Zucker. Not every guy says they “grab ’em by the pussy”; lots of guys have said, “I’d hit that.”

  302. says

    Nerd @412, that was such a dramatic segment (assuming that, like me, you find data dramatic). In just a few days Trump dropped from 41% to 30% in Wisconsin. His bragging about sexual assault affected public approval (and likely voters) bigly.

  303. says

    I noticed that Trump is pulling one of his signature moves, claiming that he doesn’t even know Temple Taggart. Trouble is, there are photos of him with Temple Taggart at the 1997 Miss USA pageant. It was in connection with the 1997 pageant that Trump kissed Taggart on the mouth instead of shaking her hand when the two were first introduced.

    And there’s more,

    Later, McDowell said, Trump offered to help her get contracts with elite modeling agencies, and during a visit to Trump Tower in Manhattan at Trump’s invitation, he again embraced and kissed her on the lips, this time in front of two pageant chaperones and a receptionist.

    The New York encounter made one of the chaperones so “uncomfortable” that she advised McDowell not to go into any rooms with Trump alone, McDowell said. The other chaperone accompanied her into Trump’s office, she said.

    NBC News link

    Taggert is a former Miss Utah. Mormons in Utah will be particularly incensed by this latest example of Trump’s boorish behavior.

  304. says

    Update to #411 above: I thought the interview story sounded strange, which is why I added the asterisk. Either I missed this paragraph (which is why there was no ellipsis in my quote) or they added it later. Entirely possible that I missed it, so apologies.

    The interview was conducted via email correspondence with a Trump campaign senior adviser, Suzanne Ryder Jaworowski, who is also campaign manager for the state of Indiana, Nedeljnik‘s managing editor, Marko Prelevic, told Newsweek.

    The whole thing is quite odd.

    Speaking of interviews, Trump canceled one with Sean Hannity scheduled for tonight.

  305. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A report that the Trump Campaign is pulling out of Virginia.

    Donald Trump’s campaign is “pulling out of Virginia,” a move that stunned staff in the battleground state, three sources with knowledge of the decision told NBC News.
    The decision came from Trump’s headquarters in New York and was announced on a conference call late Wednesday that left some Republican Party operatives in the state blindsided. Two staffers directly involved in the GOP’s efforts in Virginia confirmed the decision.
    The move to pull out of Virginia shows Trump is “running essentially a four state campaign,” with the focus now shifting to battlegrounds critical to his chances in November: Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, and Ohio, a source with knowledge of the decision told NBC News.

  306. says

    By trashing Bill Clinton’s involvement in bombing Serbia, Trump is simultaneously trashing NATO … again. Putin is smiling.

    In other news, Katrina Pierson, National Spokesperson for the Trump campaign is pushing victim-blaming hard. She said that the victims want “fifteen minutes of fame.”

    During a panel discussion on “CNN Tonight” with Don Lemon, Pierson responded to reports that the women had accused Trump of inappropriately touching them in separate incidents spanning several decades.

    “Just to answer the question on why they would come out, Don, because 15 minutes of fame,” she said.

    Pierson also disputed the account of Jessica Leeds, who claimed in an explosive New York Times story released earlier Wednesday that Trump grabbed her breasts while sitting beside her in first-class during a flight to New York. In her recollection, Leeds says Trump pulled up the armrest that separated them before groping her. […]

    Politico link

    Most of these women are speaking out after hearing the Access Hollywood tape. And most of the coverage in the New York Times, People Magazine, Florida newspapers, etc. are in response to the revelations that have come out after the Access Hollywood tape was aired. So, how on earth do Trump and his surrogates think that this news is a media and a Clinton conspiracy to discredit him? Trump discredited himself.

    Michelle Obama today: “I cannot believe that a candidate for president would brag about assaulting women.”

  307. says

    Michelle Obama speaking passionately in NH right now.

    I was saying to someone yesterday that I was afraid to see what more would come out.

    In an interview from 2004, Trump recalled seeing Simpson and his wife at a restaurant in Los Angeles.

    “I’m sitting having dinner and O.J. came up to me — I was sitting with very important people, big bankers, nobody that you know, big, big bankers, and we were sitting there, there were six of us, and O.J. came up,” Trump said. “And he was talking to us for about three minutes, and Nicole, was with her mother I think, and she came over, and she started screaming at him, ‘get over to the table, what the hell are you—’ she was rough, in all fairness.”

    “So, he decided obviously to kill her,” Trump said, laughing.

    “It might have been right at the [restaurant] that he decided it,” Stern responds.

    “She was very tough,” Trump continued. “She came over and she really embarrassed him, she was screaming at him. She didn’t care. And that was before ‘The Apprentice’ so she didn’t give a damn about me. Now she’d be kissing my ass. Now I’m the biggest star on television, she’ll kiss my ass.”

    “You would never kill one of you ex-wives, would you?” Stern asked.

    “Uhh, I could think about it,” Trump replied, laughing.

    “It would almost be that absurd to think that O.J. killed his ex-wife,” Stern said. “It would be that absurd to think you killed your ex-wife. That’s what I read in the paper today. In other words, it was out of character it seemed for O.J. Nice O.J.”

    “Other than all of the beatings that were called into the police station and later retracted,” Trump said. “There were a number of them, Howard. Like about six times.”

    Trump added, “You know she did call six times and screamed: ‘help, help, help he’s beating me up, he’s beating me up’ and the next day they dropped the charges. That’s not totally normal. That’s not Fred and Mary Trump, do we agree?”

  308. says

    Fox News is also pushing the “coordinated attack” line that the Trump campaign is using to dismiss new charges of sexual assault against women by Donald Trump.

    JON SCOTT (HOST): The fact that it wasn’t just the [New York] Times [that reported on allegations of sexual assault by Donald Trump]. There are three newspapers that come out separately with accounts of different women who say that Donald Trump made unusual or unwanted advances. The fact that those three separate papers all come out at once seems a little coordinated, seems a little too convenient.


    SCOTT: I talked to a guy who has prosecuted a bunch of sex crime cases, he’s a prosecutor, and he said that adults don’t tend to hold back on these stories and suggested that, as Julian [Epstein] said, that maybe the revelations from the Access Hollywood tape all of a sudden sort of caused a bunch of people to run forward with — with accounts, stories, whatever you want to call them that sort of fits the MO that they heard — suggesting that they’re basically embellishing the stories.

    Media Matters link

  309. says

    This is a followup to SC’s comment 427.

    Excerpts from Michelle Obama’s speech:

    The fact is that in this election, we have a candidate for president of the United States who, over the course of his lifetime and the course of this campaign has said things about women that are so shocking. So demeaning, I simply will not repeat anything here today. And last week we saw this candidate actually bragging about sexually assaulting women. And I can’t believe that I’m saying that. […]

    It would be dishonest and disingenuous for me to move on to the next thing like this was just a bad dream. This is not something we can ignore. It’s not something we can sweep under the rug as just another disturbing footnote in a sad election season. Because this was not just a lewd conversation. This wasn’t locker room banter. This was a powerful individual speaking freely and openly about sexually predator behavior. […]

    I feel it so personally. And I’m sure that many of you do too. Particularly the women. The shameful comments about our bodies. The disrespect of our ambitions and intellect. The belief that you can do anything you want to a woman. It is cruel. It is frightening. And the truth is, it hurts. It hurts. It’s like that sick sinking feeling you get when you’re walking down the street minding your own business. Some guy yells out vulgar words about your body. Or when you see that guy at work that stands just a little too close, stares just a little too long, you feel uncomfortable in your own skin. […]

    This is disgraceful. It is intolerable. Doesn’t matter what party you belong to. No woman deserves to be treated this way. No one deserves this kind of abuse. I know it’s a campaign, but this isn’t about politics. It’s about basic human decency. It’s about right and wrong. We cannot endure this or expose our children to this for any longer. Not for another minute, let alone four years.

  310. blf says

    One of the columnists at the Grauniad weighs in at one of the colummnists at the New York Times, For a life lived hating Hillary Clinton — take a bow, Maureen Dowd:

    Dowd has covered nine elections, never more energetically than when a Clinton is running, because, famously, the New York Times columnist hates the Clintons — particularly Hillary. Over the years, Dowd has called her shifty and a dominatrix, a manly girl, and written endlessly about her creepy marriage to Bill, which she once described as a repugnant arrangement.

    When Clinton first ran against Barack Obama, Dowd wrote of how pathetic it was that she has to wage a major offensive{…} to make herself appear warm-blooded, and commentary this year includes the sour gem: After running as a man last time around, Hillary Clinton is now running as a woman. Since she has a book out — The Year of Voting Dangerously, a collection of writings on the season’s political insanity — Dowd popped up on talk shows last weekend; arch, brittle and fairly twitching with the strain of being caught between Clinton and a hard place. It was a small, thrilling piece of drama alongside the frankly exhausting spectacle of the main event.

    N.b. For some reason, some browsers (I usually use Opera on Linux) are currently claiming various sites, including the Granuiad and Ye Pffft! of All Knowledge, have expired security certificates. Possible, I suppose, but the number & prominence of sites involved makes me suspicious — but in any case, the result is you may have problems viewing the link. (It is also possible this is entirely a local issue with my new machine…)

  311. says

    Steve Benen helpfully outlined Trump’s total meltdown:

    […] * Trump called for the imprisonment of his opponent and her attorneys, while vowing to investigate Justice Department officials who failed to prosecute his rival to his satisfaction.

    Oh, yes Trump did. In fact, he just added the imprisonment of Clinton’s attorneys, and the threat to investigate Justice Department officials, to his threat to put Hillary Clinton in jail. Interestingly, some of his surrogates didn’t get the message. Kellyanne Conway called the threat to put Clinton in jail “a quip.” You know, not serious at all. Rudy Giuliani said the threat to jail Clinton was just “back and forth in a debate.” So, apparently Trump didn’t really mean it.

    Trump means it. He has repeated his intention to jail Clinton multiple times since the debate. And now he has added a bunch of other people. Pretty soon Trump will realize that he should start building more prisons now.

    * Trump said that if Hillary Clinton is president, ISIS terrorists will “take over this country, they’ll take over this part of the world. Believe me.”

    * He added that a Clinton victory would produce “the almost total destruction of our country as we know it.”

    * Trump insisted Clinton “shouldn’t be allowed” to be a presidential candidate.

    * Trump accused House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) of being part of a “sinister” conspiracy against him.

    * Trump accused the independent Commission on Presidential Debates of orchestrating a “rigged deal.”

    * Trump said independent public-opinion polls are “crooked” and part of a “rigged system.”

    * At the start of a rally in Florida, Trump blasted yet another fire marshal. […]

  312. says

    Oh, FFS. I guess there’s no way to make it stop.

    Trump claimed that he did not sexually assault a journalist from People magazine because it is obvious that she is not attractive enough to have been the object of one of his assaults. Today, in a speech, Trump said:

    Look at her. […] You tell me what you think. I don’t think so.

  313. blf says

    Teh trum-prat is threatening to sue the New York Times over the recent landslide of sexual assault & impropriety claims, and has had his lawyers send the newspaper a letter demanding retractions and take-downs and first-born children and so on. The Times has responded (Trump: sexual misconduct accusers are horrible, horrible liars, live blog, at the 18:39 point):

    Here’s a letter from the New York Times’ lawyer replying to Trump’s lawyer.

    “We decline to do so,” the letter says. “Nothing in our article has had the slightest effect on the reputation that Mr Trump, through his own words and actions, has already created for himself.”

    The letter also says, “It would have been a disservice not just to our readers but to democracy itself to silence their voices.”

  314. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Since Trump has effectively conceded Virginia, that leaves
    Florida and Pennsylvania (10/3-5),
    North Carolina and Ohio (10/10-12).
    Clinton leads in three states, and Ohio has trump leading by a percentage point.
    Polling data from NBC/WSJ/Marist.
    Poor vote deprived Trump. I’m sure his juvenile temper tantrums will not amuse the discerning electorate.

  315. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It’s Not Easy Being Mean: ‘Pepe’ Creator Wants His Meme Back

    The creator of the meme Pepe the Frog said on Thursday that it’s “insane” that the “once peaceful frog dude” was now being used as a symbol of hatred by some in the so-called “alt-right” hate-group subculture and supporters of Donald Trump.
    “It’s completely insane that Pepe has been labeled a symbol of hate, and that racists and anti-Semites are using a once peaceful frog-dude from my comic book as an icon of hate,” Matt Furie, an artist and illustrator, said in a post on TIME’s website.
    “It’s a nightmare, and the only thing I can do is see this as an opportunity to speak out against hate,” Furie added.
    Pepe the Frog was declared a hate symbol by the Anti-Defamation League last month after the meme had been increasingly used for bigoted internet posts.
    The green meme was recently included in an image posted on Instagram by Donald Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr. The Republican nominee had also tweeted a version of the frog resembling Donald Trump.
    Furie lamented how Pepe began as a harmless cartoon in 2005 in his comic book “Boy’s Club” and was used for goofy memes in subsequent years until his current notoriety and association with neo-Nazis and other white supremacists.
    “Before he got wrapped up in politics, Pepe was an inside-joke and a symbol for feeling sad or feeling good and many things in between,” Furie said.

  316. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Recent polls show Hillary up in Ohio as well–hell, she’s even up in AZ in October!

    The main negative at present is that the Senate may be slipping away from Democrats.

    Evan Bayh is fading, and it may be that purple state voters want to split the ticket to act as a check on Clinton.

  317. says

    “SNP’s Nicola Sturgeon announces new independence referendum bill”:

    A consultation gets under way next week on plans for a second Scottish independence referendum, the SNP’s Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed.

    She told the party’s Glasgow conference that an Independence Referendum Bill would be published next week.

    It marks the first step to holding a second vote.

    Ms Sturgeon said Scotland had the right to choose a different path if it was not allowed to protect its interests “within the UK”.

    Ms Sturgeon told delegates that Scotland had the right to seek something better if there were prospects of an unstable future as part of the UK.

    She said: “I am determined that Scotland will have the ability to reconsider the question of independence and to do so before the UK leaves the EU – if that is necessary to protect our country’s interests.

    “So, I can confirm today that the Independence Referendum Bill will be published for consultation next week.”

  318. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It appears that Utah may be in play.

    Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are tied in Utah, according to a new poll released on Wednesday.
    The Y2 Analytics poll, published first by Mormon church-owned Deseret News, found both Clinton and Trump at 26% among likely Utah voters, with independent Evan McMullin at 22% and Libertarian Gary Johnson at 14%.
    The poll is striking, given Utah is a reliably Republican state that has not voted for a Democrat since Lyndon Johnson in 1964, but comes after Clinton’s campaign has mounted a concerted effort to win the Beehive State by driving a wedge between the Republican nominee and Mormon voters.
    McMullin, a Mormon, was a late entrant to the presidential race and has focused on Utah, where he was born. It’s one of the few handful of states where the former CIA employee will be on the ballot in November.

    I saw speculation that Trump, McMullin, and Johnson split the republican vote, allowing Clinton with only 30-35% of the vote win the first-past-the-post contest.

  319. says

    Donald Trump’s paranoia is expanding. In a speech he gave today he blamed not just the “Clinton machine,” the media, and Republicans-having-insufficient-Trump-love (Paul Ryan, aka “the establishment”) for the fact that he is losing. Oh, no, that’s not a big enough paranoia balloon for Trump.

    Now Trump is pushing the conspiracy theory that there is global, coordinated effort to make sure he does not become president. It’s a global conspiracy!

    […] “There is nothing the political establishment will not do, no lie that they won’t tell to hold their prestige and power at your expense,” Trump said early in the rally. “And that’s what has been happening. The Washington establishment, and the financial and media corporations that fund it, exist