Thursday, November 8, 2018

You Win Some, You Lose Some

Friends, the midterms are now in the books, and Republicans can celebrate some big wins in marquee matchups: Florida Governor, Georgia Governor, and the U.S. Senate races in Arizona, Texas, North Dakota, Missouri, Florida, and Indiana, for instance. Still, Democrats won the House, albeit narrowly, and this is certainly not what I expected or hoped for.  My latest Newsmaker interview with Brian O'Neil gives you my general opinion on the midterms, which I will also analyze in a forthcoming article.  Here is this week's Newsmaker Show:

Meanwhile, I invite you to take a gander at these important stories.  First, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been fired (not unexpectedly), and this means that the Mueller investigation has a new overseer: Acting Attorney General Matt Whittaker.  What does this portend?

Secondly, CNN's Jim Acosta has had his pass to access the White House revoked, after behaving deplorably towards a White House intern and more importantly President Trump. If you ask me, Acosta is a buffoon, not a journalist, and his disrespectful brand of "journalism" would never have been tolerated if it was directed at President Obama. Simply put, no one is required to like President Trump, but a White House reporter is and ought to be required to show basic respect to the Office of President. Acosta has failed in that regard, so he should find a new line of work, or a new "beat" as a reporter.  I strongly believe the White House should stick to its guns on this issue, regardless of whatever whining comes out of the press corps.

Lastly, winning the House does not seem to have put the far-left in a better mood.  They descended like jackals last night on the home of Tucker Carlson and implicitly threatened him and his family.  You'll see a lot of journalists howling about the fate of Jim Acosta -- you'll see very few lift a finger to defend Tucker's constitutional rights, not to mention the safety and well-being of his family.  It's a shame that the Left wasn't held more accountable for this kind of behavior in the midterms, but at least we can presume that Tucker will keep fighting the good fight...


  1. Not so far, Dr. Waddy. Even as I type, AZ has flipped around and Sinema is now leading. There are still chunks of votes in both Maricopa County (which Sinema led in) and Pima County (which went even more heavily for Sinema). That looks like a Demo pickup.

    Florida being Florida, Nelson is within 0.18% of Scott with votes still coming in. That margin triggers an automatic hand recount, so FL won't be known for a while. In terms of the governor's race, Gillum is within 0.44% of DeSantis, so that means a machine recount.

    If the vote margins remain the same as this morning, it is not likely that the recounts will flip either race, but, right now, they are too close to call.

    The same is true in GA. There are still thousands of votes to be counted. Right now, Brian Kemp is only 13,000 votes over the 50% threshold to avoid a runoff. Now that Kemp has stepped down as secretary of state, Abrams may have a good chance to get into a runoff.

    Finally, if you are a Trumpster Party member in TX, I would be a little nervous. O'Rourke got within 2.6% of Cruz -- a bit more than 200,000 votes. There are 1 million more Trumpster Party voters than Dems in TX. He got more votes in a midterm than Clinton got in a presidential election. Demographics are changing in TX -- it's becoming more brown, which means it is also becoming more purple. Add in the number of millennials who turned out, and TX will shortly be elected statewide officials.

    You pooh-pooh the House results. Votes are still being counted. Dems have already picked up 30 seats, and it looks like it will be closer to 35 once all the votes in CA are counted. Mia Love, Dave Brat Karen Handel and Dana Rohrbacher got defeated. Chris Collins and Duncan Hunter will need to be replaced during their terms because they are not going to be able to vote from prison.

    Given all the gerrymandering and voter suppression going on, the Dem House victory was as impressive as the 63 Tea Party pickups in 2010.

    Finally, 7 governorships (at the time of this writing) flipped - NV, NM, KS, ME, WI, MI and IL -- as did 7 state legislatures. In fact, Dems picked up 270 state legislative seats. They have a lot more strength in the midwest now.

    Finally, the vote counts in the House races showed a 9.2% Dem advantage over Trumpsters. Clinton won only by about 2.5%. If I was Trump, I would not be happy -- which, based on his meltdown at the press conference.

    Two other things. What happened to Tucker Carlson should not happen to any critic, no matter what political stance, just as prominent Dems and the media shouldn't have to deal with bombs being sent to them. But, when you embrace the rhetoric of an individual such as Trump, and laugh about George Soros being targeted by one of the bombs, you are not doing yourself any favors. That's not to say that what the mob did was justified -- just that when you lie down with dogs, you sometimes get up with fleas.

    Finally, I am distressed to see you buying into the White House lie about Jim Acosta. His press pass was lifted because he challenges this administration with questions. He did nothing to the intern. There is video of the interaction and numerous witnesses right there. She grabbed for his mic. He politely said, "Excuse me, I am trying to ask a question." She grabbed for the mic again, and he put both hands on the mic. The person being physically aggressive was the intern. Baghdad Sarah Sanders (who, for a practicing Christian, lies an awful lot) has tried to spin this differently -- much like her boss who tells followers not to believe what they hear and see.

    Acosta comes off as being very aggressive only in comparison to the passivity of most of the White House press corps. Someday, a reporter is going to ask about Trump's 6000+ lies since he took office, and Donny's weave is going to be set on fire.

  2. I must say, Rod -- you're pretty good at putting a positive spin on things! True, if Broward County keeps on counting until they find enough votes to put Nelson and Gillum over the top (hey, why stop there? Maybe they could change the 2016 results while they're at it), then maybe Florida could flip. My guess is FL and GA will stay in our column. As for AZ, who knows. I'd still rather have the Senate than the House any day.

    As for TX, O'Rourke did a splendid job, and he converted quite a few Republican-leaning voters into temporary O'Rourke supporters, but look at the TX Congressional delegation or the state legislature for a better sense of where the two parties stand. Yes, TX is purpling, but it's got a ways to go before a Dem carries it in a Presidential election, assuming our tottering democracy even lasts that long.

    As for the popular vote, the numbers I see have the Dem advantage at around 7 points. Given the historical headwinds for Republicans, I'm not too worried by that. Your side did prove to me, though, that it won't go quietly in 2020. If I was a betting man, I'm not sure I would bet on Trump.

    You may be right about Acosta and the intern. Whatever happened between them, I'm sure Sanders blew it out of proportion. I would still hold the press corps to a higher standard of professionalism, though. This endless repetition of the claim that Trump "lies" is a good case in point. It's calumny to call someone a liar unless you can PROVE that they're lying. You don't consider the caravan an "invasion"? Okay, but that doesn't make someone who disagrees with you a "liar". I've never seen anyone prove that Trump has lied even a single time, as in deliberately and knowingly said something false. Prove me wrong...

  3. Yes, I would rather have the Senate as well, but the map was particularly tough for Dems.

    As far as lying, Trump said two today in his impromptu press conference. First, he said he doesn't know Matt Whitaker, the new acting AG. Trump has met multiple times with Whitaker in the Oval Office. Second, Trump insisted multiple times today that Robert Mueller has never been Senate-confirmed. Mueller was Senate-confirmed as FBI director in 2001.

  4. Dr. Waddy: So much to say. First, re: your broadcast: I fully agree, the GOP is still going strong after the midterms. President Trump was an asset to candidates and that is a very ominous reality for Dems to face.All the candidates Obama stumped for appear to have lost (because, gasp, of him?) The President wisely concentrated on the Senate and it did work ( Aw gee, maybe because of him?)

    Acosta stands accused of assault on a woman and by Dem standards, condemned. You were right in citing Acosta's vigorous and purposeful leftist assault on the President by using leading questions in the guise of news reporting - an old and exceedingly tiresome tactic. Acosta's accusations of "unAmerican" attacks on the press are disingenuous and laughable coming from a partisan like him. Let him stew in his own juices. Bigots like him have been used to being excused by spineless attackees but President Trump has grit. Acosta's presumptuous attack on the President has cost him his credentials, as it should.

    You are right to consider that the electoral vulnerability of some Dems may cause in them some misgivings about supporting impeachment. But oh, you guys, go for it, go for it. You'll never get a conviction and you'll royally piss off the real America in 2020.

    As for the caravan. Were its members to invade (yes) the personal property (say Pelosi's compound in SF) of leftists it would warrant a more realistic response by those dreamers and would include, you can be sure, remonstrances on their property rights. Meanwhile, Tucker Carlson has very actual grievances which, we must doubt, will receive appropriate attention from a police force unwillingly commanded by DC leftists.

  5. Rod, with respect, you make the same error that is rampant on the Left: you assume that everything a Republican gets wrong is a "lie". As for Trump "knowing" Matt Whittaker, whether one "knows" someone is an utterly subjective question. Do I "know" Rod Carveth? Yes and no. There's no correct answer to that question. As for the Senate-confirmation issue, okay -- Trump was wrong. That doesn't make him a liar. I recall once that Obama stated that Putin had been the head of the KGB. That's nonsense. He was IN the KGB. He never headed it. Did the press condemn him as a "liar"? No. Did they even notice his erroneous remark? Not at all. Every politician says things which are, or turn out to be, untrue. LYING is a somewhat different phenomenon, which, as I said before, requires knowledge of the intentions of the alleged liar.

    Jack, I agree that Trump was an asset in red states, and he helped us boost our Senate majority, but I would have to concede that he's a liability in other areas. I don't blame him for that. His negatives are a function of a hostile press.

    Speaking of which, I would be much more aggressive than this White House has been in distancing myself from the left-leaning media. In my view, much of it has departed so far from the canons of professional journalism, and basic human decency, that the administration need not associate with them at all. Retract many more press passes, I say, and don't call on or answer questions from clearly hostile actors. Freedom works both ways. The media is free to ask its questions, and Republicans and conservatives are free to tell them to go take a flying leap...

    I sincerely can't wait to see how the Dems handle the investigations and the all-important question of impeachment. It seems like a classic no-win situation to me, but we shall see if they can capitalize on it.

    And I agree that the Left's willful blindness when it comes to crimes committed by illegal aliens is outrageous. I sincerely hope that the next Attorney General will be infinitely more pro-active when it comes to charging those who give aid and comfort to illegal immigrants. I'm sick and tired of the Left violating federal immigration law with impunity, but that's just me...

  6. Dr. Waddy, with respect, when you go on TV and say "I know Matt Whitaker and he is a fine man" and then say in a press gaggle -- multiple times -- that "I don't know Matt Whitaker," this is not a debate over a subjective definition of "to know." Either Trump was lying in the first instance or lying in the second instance. There are a number of reports -- not denied at all -- that Whitaker has met multiple times with Trump, which is why Trump picked him.

    As for "mistakes," all politicians make mistakes -- that's true. When you make 6400 "mistakes" since January of 2017 (599 in October alone), then a) you have a reckless disregard for facts or b) you are totally clueless.

    BTW, there are clear Trump lies. He said he had no knowledge of payments to Stormy Daniels, for example, yet is on tape conversing with Michael Cohen about it. The WSJ article this week (and the WSJ is hardly anti-Trump) says he was far more involved with the payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougall than he has denied.

  7. Fair points, Rod, but even inconsistent statements are not proof of lying. Politicians have imperfect memories and flawed intellects. Politicians shade the truth depending on the audiences they speak to. A good many politicians are even capable of believing two seemingly contradictory propositions to be (simultaneously) true. Personally, I don't see the point of debating the degree to which Trump knows or doesn't know Matt Whitaker. He IS the Acting Attorney General, and his actions (or lack thereof) will speak for themselves. Bottom line: if you don't want Donald Trump to have authority over the Justice Department, then don't vote to re-elect him in 2020.

    I'm not sure who's keeping track of Trump's 6400 "mistakes" or "lies", but it's a fair bet they weren't bothering to count Obama's fibs. The criticism of Trump is so obviously partisan, hysterical, and deceptive that it lacks credibility. Having said that, I don't believe that Trump is as faithful to the truth, and as cautious in making claims, as I would like him to be, but I still say it's churlish to call the President of the United States a "liar", and often on such petty grounds.

    When and to whom did Trump say he had no knowledge of payments to Stormy Daniels? I personally don't believe that the payments were either improper or illegal, but I'm sure Mueller will suggest otherwise.

  8. Dr. Waddy: I support your well expressed and supported views. Rod: You regularly support your views with plausible reasoning and empirical evidence but that is not characteristic of the American left. Overall, it appears to rely on an assumption of self evident moral superiority which excuses it from intellectual integrity.

    I maintain that the American left has forfeited any moral authority to find fault with President Trump by its resolute support for William Clinton - a convicted perjuror, a probable forcible rapist, a cynical denier to his country of service in time of war(C'mon now- Lt. Slick Willy would have had himself deployed to NATO headquarters, 7000 miles from Vietnam,within striking distance of the Amsterdam stews, so his deceit would not have been necessary, though he was elected by the mindless boomers despite its disgrace).

  9. Jack, it is rather extraordinary how thoroughly (and belatedly) the Dems have come to the conclusion that they must cut their ties with ole Bill. One assumes that, if they get serious about impeachment, Republicans will rediscover some outstanding sound bites from the Clinton era, dismissing the idea of holding a President accountable for crimes related to mere sexual indiscretion. Will they be dumb enough to go down that road? Some of them will. Some of them already are.