Friday, March 4, 2016
Once again a late blog. This was supposed to be an evaluation of last night’s Republican Debate #11. However I did fall asleep in the chair from 10pm to 10.50. Ther4efore I must rely on what the pundits and services have to write this morning. Suffice to say that to have missed this circus was to miss nothing.
The two most remarkable statements that I heard was (a) Trump boasting about his penile size, and the three opponents after blasting him for two hours stating that they would support him if he were the nominee.
Most important was Romney’s attack on Trump. On "Today" this morning, Romney himself said he wouldn't vote for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. But Trump's three rivals last night didn't say that.
Romney did what none of Trump’s rivals for the nomination has done. He set out a slashing and coherent attack on the New York billionaire. He described Trump as a fraud and a phony, as a failed businessman and an aspiring politician with no ideological moorings. Trump’s policies, Romney warned, would be disastrous domestically and dangerous internationally.
It was left to Trump’s rivals — Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich — to drive home those arguments on Thursday. At times Cruz and Rubio tried, attempting to unmask Trump on immigration and foreign policy. Meanwhile, Kasich continued his strategy of trying to stop Trump by declining to criticize him.
Throughout the evening, Trump only helped reinforce the substance of some of Romney’s criticisms. He deflected virtually every question about policy by launching into personal attacks on his rivals or resorting to generalities and broad promises. He struggled to defend contradictory statements he has made in the past.
In an extended exchange with Fox News anchor and his one-time nemesis Megyn Kelly, he tried to talk away a class-action lawsuit brought against Trump University, dismissing it as minor and predicting that after a few more years of litigation, he will win the argument with the dissatisfied students.
Michael Gerson , the Washington Posts’ Opinion writer notes about stopping Trump; Option 1: Supporting Cruz; “But anyone concerned about Trump’s nativism will find it very difficult to support Cruz, who has criticized Trump for being too soft on illegal immigration. Cruz would be a weak candidate against Hillary Clinton. His 100-proof conservatism is not to everyone’s taste. And, as one South Carolina Republican told me, he seems “covered in a thick layer of people repellant.”
Option 2: Even if Trump’s plurality can’t be beaten by a single candidate, deny him a majority of delegates at the convention and stop him there. On Super Tuesday, after all, Trump lost four states and significantly underperformed his pre-election polling in Virginia, Oklahoma and Texas. And the electoral terrain gets less favorable to Trump from here on.
The immediate problem here is that Trump may win Ohio or Florida (he is polling ahead in both) on March 15, which would probably doom this strategy. And if Trump goes into the convention with a strong plurality but is denied the nomination, it is easy to imagine a Republican convention with all the unity and decorum of the tumultuous 1968 Democratic convention.
Option 3: Support a center-right, third-party candidate for president who would represent a civil rights Republicanism and hold the core message of the party in trust for better days. This approach would depend on finding a strong candidate who is willing to engage in an important but (given the history of such efforts) losing effort. A Mitt Romney candidacy would smack too much of an establishment bent on revenge. In contrast, Mitch Daniels, the former governor of Indiana, would carry a winsome, disciplined, conservative message. Former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice would stand for everything Trump does not — gravity, dignity, character and serious moral purpose.
But why would anyone serious take such a thankless and difficult role? It would be a heroic act of self-sacrifice for the sake of the party and the country. And this candidate would probably have no political future, since he or she might tip a close election toward Clinton (which would, in fact, be part of the motivation).
Option 4: Essentially sit out the election, wait for Trump to lose (he is considerably behind Clinton in most national polls) and participate in the GOP reconstruction.
The problem here? Clinton is actually a dismal candidate, involved in an ongoing FBI investigation concerning the handling of classified material. A Clinton-Trump race raises the small but significant prospect of a Trump presidency. Which could bring serious and lasting damage to U.S. democracy and standing in the world. There is, in fact, no clear or morally satisfying option for Republicans”.
About Trump's truth! https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/03/04/fact-checking-the-11th-gop-debate/?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_politics