A highly abridged collection of my thoughts on the 2016 election written without any real structure with the purpose of jogging my memory later on.
What a bizarre election. It reminds me of reading accounts of Italian or Greek elections more than an American one.
Normally there is more excitement surrounding local candidates around here, but the strange presidential race has sucked most of the attention away this time out. One of the consequences of the immense damage the autocratic Obama administration has wrought over two terms is this weird (by American standards) faceoff between a billionaire populist not wanted by his party leadership and the most corrupt candidate to ever run for the office. Both have high negatives so it has been a marathon to see which one will be the most disliked.
I think the issue of corruption is what the entire election is going to boil down to with the unpleasant realization that a huge number of Democrats have no problem with it and do not see it as anything bad. As that realization has swept through people on the more conservative side of politics, the illusion that the opposition is mad up of good people who are just stupid has begun to fade. That means a lot of woe for the country no matter who wins, because there is no chance at reconciliation now. Things are not going to be forgotten – or forgiven.
Obama promised hope and instead delivered the most divisive presidency in recent memory, politicizing everything at every turn. The bait and switch that is the ironically named Affordable Care Act has financially ruined people while reducing access to health care. The bad economy he inherited was mismanaged further with more people out of the workforce than when the downturn began. There has been no recovery for vast swaths of the electorate.
No wonder so many people are anxious and frightened while exhibiting behavior ranging from paranoia to absolute denial. Things are so comprehensively bad right now that is more than most humans can process. In fact, I can’t even begin to cover the wide array of issues and problems that we face right now. It is enough to fill volumes.
Speaking of too much to process, the leaked wrong doings of the Clinton machine are overwhelming, perhaps to the point of overloading those that are paying attention.
Between Wikileaks releases of Clinton insider emails and Project Veritas videos exposing the deceptions used to manipulate print and broadcast media, a stark reality of rampant voting fraud by the Democrats must be faced – especially by Democrats who insist they are the righteous ones in politics. Cries of edited videos and Russian forgery of emails are not only incorrect, but irrational. Some things need to be faced no matter how ugly they are.
So far, I only see a handful who are willing to face the facts about the compulsive liar Hillary Clinton, mostly ex-Bernie Sanders supporters. How any of them can vote for her is beyond my understanding, especially after the email showing they were black mailing him to keep him from going negative on her during the primaries.
Awhile back, I predicted Donald Trump would win and most likely win big. If the system were fair and properly policed, I’d stand 100% behind that. However, with all the leaks and revelations, it is much harder to predict what the outcome will. Just today, Terry McAuliffe, the governor of Virginia pardoned 60,000 felons giving them the right to vote again. That may not seem a lot in a country of hundreds of millions, but it could make a difference and award electoral votes to his crooked friend Hillary.
But back to Trump.
Donald Trump has not run a traditional modern campaign. Instead, it has been fusion of social media presence and a huge amount of good old fashioned barnstorming. That makes for a radical departure from the safe, staid campaign methods that have failed the last two presidential elections. Along the way he’s morphed from the vague gesticulating rookie of the Republican primaries to a much more polished speech maker.
His “common touch” infuriates many in the upper class and those who desperately aspire to be seen as educated. In turn, a massive divide has been shown to exist between those who have (college degree holders) and those who have not (the working class) that transcends party lines. This muddles predicting the vote as there are more crossovers than usual, but I think many more Democrats are crossing to vote for Trump than elitist Republicans voting for Clinton. Just in the labor unions alone there is a rebellion among the rank and file who have simply had enough.
A startling number of black voters are crossing over to Trump with him supposedly doing better with Hispanics than Romney in 2012 (still too few to matter, in my opinion). Evangelicals who bailed last time seem to be coming back as well. Adding to the strangeness of this election is the strong pro-Trump Amish vote in Pennsylvania. Who saw that coming?
Meanwhile, the polls favor Clinton. Given the cooperation shown between the campaign and the news media in the leaked emails, it is hard to believe they are honest or accurate. A big part of the strategy is to herd expectations toward victory and with voter fraud so heavily in play it all may turn out according to the script written.
I now suspect Romney actually narrowly won the last election if fraud hadn’t been present. Yeah, things are that bad in the United States now.
The big factor that can’t be quantified is the hidden Trump voters. Many of his supporters haven’t voted in decades or never bothered to vote. Due to this, they don’t show up in the polling and are wild cards impossible to count. One of the favorite pastimes of blogs supporting the Donald has been counting how many people show up at Trump rallies versus Clinton rallies. There is good reason to pay attention to these turnouts since they indicate enthusiasm.
If the rallies are anything to go by, Trump may have enough people to not only overcome the voter fraud in place, but smash it. Clinton can’t fill small venues and Trump overflows larger ones with tens of thousands showing up on short notice like yesterday in Minnesota.
In the end Trump will win if he can overcome the vote rigging Democrats love so much. From mailed ballot tampering to dead voters to machines changing GOP votes to Democrat, there is so much criminal behavior going on that will never by investigated or prosecuted thanks to a Department of Justice that cares nothing for justice.
If nothing else good comes of this election, at least we now know how dirty our government is, though I have to wonder if enough people actually care. As it is, the FBI and DOJ have been exposed as purely political operations. In turn, the erosion of trust in the government is much bigger than those in power understand. Hostility toward the federal government is only going to grow.
With a dishonest and rabidly partisan media, corrupt government, and a willingness by Democrats to bully anyone who points out the truth the country is terrible shape. I’ve come to suspect that people will accept lie after lie as long as they think they are getting something out of it or it doesn’t personally affect them. In other words, the corruption runs deep in our society itself and can’t be easily gotten rid of.
Murky is the outcome with so many variables at play and that extends down ticket as well. Locally, we don’t have much of a voter fraud problem though I’m personally aware of at least two cases in the past twelve years. Suffice it to say it isn’t a concern except in the Rochester area, which is of consequence in the Congressional District 1 contest.
If there is a year to get rid of Walz, this is the one. Jim Hagedorn campaigns hard and now has name recognition in an area where the rural voters are going Trump. The urban voters are the main issue. That said, enough motivated voters can tip things the GOP’s way.
Our local State Senator Jeremy Miller is most likely safe since he’s charted a moderate course in the liberal town of Winona. His purple caucus may upset conservative activists, but it plays very well where he needs the most votes.
Greg Davids is facing a tougher than expected foe in Trehus for House District 28B. The young and fairly clueless Democrat has the same thing going for him that former Senator Sharon Ropes had – people just like him. I had expected an easy re-election for Greg, but this is a fickle voting population that elected the radical Tschumper in 2006. He should win, but two years from now could be very different.
I see Houston County going for Trump and that helping down ticket. The lack of enthusiasm for Hillary Clinton has been evident in the complete absence of her lawn signs. In fact, I didn’t see one until Saturday in neighboring Fillmore County and down in the college town of Decorah, Iowa. Trump signs vastly outnumbered those by the way.
Not being a fan of Trump, I’m still voting for him due to multiple reasons:
- Supreme Court appointments will determine if we have rule of law or dictatorial fiat by whatever is popular at the moment.
- Mike Pence as VP. He’d make a great president. Time Kaine is another corrupt crony of the powers that be.
- First and Second Amendments will be protected. Under Hillary, they will go away allowing the current soft dictatorship to become much more totalitarian.
- The Clintons have actually done everything they accuse Trump of talking about. They are dirty in too many ways to list!
- We will never see the White House again in anything but Democratic Party hands if Clinton wins. It is utter nonsense to believe that we’ll elect a true conservative after four years of her. That is the same argument I heard in 2008 and 2012. How’d that work out?
- The current ruling political class needs to be reigned in if there is to be any chance of the country recovering economically. They have no interest in things changing since they are sitting comfortably while others suffer.
- Trump is not Hitler. He’s not even dictator material. Hillary is.
- At least he’s entertaining and we haven’t seen that in the White House in generations.
The last is only slightly facetious. One of the penalties for having been involved in politics for a long time is that you end up seeing the bleak humor in how things actually operate. Most people have no understanding of how it all operates and never will. Even those who do are subject to the emotional vagaries of the electorate.
Will Trump win? Up until the last few weeks I was sure he would. Learning how extensive the collusion with the media is and how much voter fraud is going on has me less certain. He’ll either win big, win small, or lose small. My suspicion is the middle option based on the Brexit and the impossibility of the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series.
P.S. If Trump wins it will make Breitbart.com an even bigger winner and the mainstream media a loser. If he loses their meteoric rise will most likely stall out, if not flame out.