Saturday, January 19, 2019

Trump-Russia is a ‘Rocky-Bullwinkle’ Re-run

Russian propaganda and fake news went after opponents of Donald Trump, including Rubio, Lindsey Graham, Jeb Bush, and Hillary Clinton according to cyber security experts who testified before the Senate.

Clint Watts said that the one constant of the Russian campaign was “pumping up Trump.”

Watts was one of six experts brought before a committee investigating Russian election meddling during 10 days of drama and chaos.

Republican Devin Nunes of California and Adam Schiff agreed that a “dark cloud” still hangs over the White House.

Schiff said classified documents dealt with the names of Trump transition team members.

Richard Burr, R-N.C., introduced the testimony as a way to help Americans “establish a foundational understanding” of Russian activities in the 2016 election.

The Russians spread false news reports, targeted users of social media, and drowned out legitimate coverage “to diminish and undermine our trust in the American media by blurring what is true, and what is not.”

“This Russian ‘propaganda on steroids’ was designed to poison the national conversation in America,” Warner said. Russian meddling included an intense effort to reduce turnout among likely Clinton voters in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

During his testimony, Watts also said Russia was “pumping up Trump while tamping down the others.”

During the hearing, other experts provided examples of the Trump campaign citing Russian propaganda or fake news.

Eugene Rumer testified that “selective naming and shaming – or targeting of political adversaries with false allegations of misconduct – has been used by Russian propaganda to discredit political adversaries in the West.”

“Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election is likely to be seen as a major success, regardless of its initial goal to help advance the Trump candidacy.”

I say... "Follow the money!"

Friday, January 18, 2019

Trump's "foot up" on everyone.

Trump loses support among his core voting groups as the shutdown drags on, polls say...

President Trump is hemorrhaging support amid a political standoff over his proposed border wall that has resulted in the longest government shutdown on record, recent polls show.

• The president even appears to be losing favor with his core constituents.

• The poll results come as Elizabeth Warren announces her 2020 bid to challenge Trump.

• As the shutdown lumbers toward its fifth week, the president even appears to be losing favor with his core constituents, whose support for Trump until this point has been rock-solid since the 2016 campaign.

• Trump’s erosion in support has contributed to a sharp increase in the Real Clear Politics polling average of Trump's disapproval ratings.

• An NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll published Thursday found that Trump's approval rating has slipped 3 percent from 39 percent, while his disapproval has climbed 4 percentage points.

• And unlike past political fights, recent surveys indicate that the groups thought to comprise key parts of Trump's base are not immune from the broader downward trend in Trump support.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

'Truth isn't truth'

Giuliani’s new Orwellian outburst: "Truth isn't truth!"

Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, also insisted that he “never said there was no collusion” between Trump’s 2016 presidential election campaign and Russia.

Later in the interview, Giuliani said: “If the collusion happened, it happened a long time ago.”

On Tuesday, Trump had been obliged to state that he “never worked for Russia” following two reports that he may have been used as an asset by Moscow.
“It’s a disgrace that you even ask that question,” he told reporters on the White House lawn. “It’s all a big fat hoax.” (Neener, neener, neener!)

Both men’s comments come as Robert Mueller’s investigation into links between the Trump campaign and Russia, and obstruction of justice, looms large, punctuated by guilty pleas, convictions and indictments of former Trump associates.

Manafort has admitted to sharing polling data with a Russian during the 2016 presidential race, according to a court filing made public by his lawyers.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that Michael Cohen tried to rig online opinion polls in Trump’s favor before the 2016 election, when he was still acting as the candidate’s personal attorney and fixer.

In response, Cohen tweeted on Thursday morning: “As for the @WSJ article on poll rigging, what I did was at the direction of and for the sole benefit of Donald Trump. I truly regret my blind loyalty to a man who doesn’t deserve it.”

Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison in December for crimes including lying to Congress and facilitating illegal payments to silence two women, Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, who alleged affairs with Trump.

Cohen has been cooperating with prosecutors and has agreed to testify to Congress in February.

With changing demographics across the country and waning support in the Midwest, Trump and the GOP face a tough time in 2020!

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

'International Pariah'

The Trumps have all played fast and loose with their relationships to their businesses. Trump Escorts???

The Trumps have spoken occasionally about their respect for good government and their desire to avoid financial conflicts-of-interest given that the donald is now a president. In practice, the Trumps have all played fast and loose with their relationships to their businesses, and Ivanka hasn't been an exception. Not to mention Trumps and charity.

Shortly after the election, Ivanka appeared on "60 Minutes" while wearing a bracelet marketed by her business. Her company put out a "style alert" the next day featuring a photo from her TV appearance and noting that Ivanka was "wearing her favourite bangle from the Metropolis Collection on '60 Minutes.'" Critics said Ivanka was trying to make hay off of her father's election; her company apologised and blamed the incident on a zealous employee.

That incident wasn't a one-off, however. During the presidential campaign, Ivanka's company marketed one of her dresses as similar to one that she wore during a speech at the Republican National Convention.

Toxic brand

The Trumps might be suffering through a bit of unexpected brand damage and that may have convinced Ivanka to close shop. The Post reported that since Trump's inauguration, Ivanka's apparel and accessories line has been dropped by a number of major retailers, including Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and Hudson Bay.

Her father isn't immune; his company has struggled to expand its footprint with Trump in the White House. His golf course operations in Scotland, for example, have drawn the ire of some of the locals in places like Aberdeen.

"Critics argue that Trump is now an 'international pariah' with a brand so toxic it can only damage the reputation of Aberdeenshire," the Herald, a Scottish newspaper, noted recently.

The Best Signs From the Anti-Trump Protests in Scotland

"I do not know when or if I will ever return to the business," she told the Post. "But I do know that my focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington, so making this decision is the only fair outcome for my team and partners."

His Vegas Property teeters...

Trump never touts his "dirty dining award."

Bloomberg and others contributed to these comments

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Trump Blame Game HOAX

Trump again blamed Democrats for the government shutdown.

Trump’s efforts to pin the blame on Democrats aren’t working. Rather, polls show that Americans are increasingly blaming Trump.

Polls conducted in the first few days of the shutdown showed that between 43 percent and 47 percent of Americans blamed Trump.

In fact, more Americans blame Trump for the government shutdown

The two YouGov polls found a 4-point increase in those blaming Trump. And surveys from Reuters/Ipsos also found a 4-point increase.

Blame against Democrats hasn’t changed much.

When it comes to how each group is handling the shutdown, congressional Republicans actually fare the worst. In the most recent HuffPost/YouGov poll, for example — conducted Jan. 4-7 — more Americans disapproved of Trump’s handling of the shutdown (52 percent), but 56 percent of Americans expressed disapproval of the congressional GOP’s performance.

However the blame shakes out for this shutdown, government shutdowns historically have not had lasting political repercussions, so Trump may weather this latest political maelstrom.

That said, for now the shutdown appears to be hurting Trump. His job approval rating has edged down in the past three weeks.