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The Elizabeth Warren Hype Train Begins to Go Off the Tracks

Westlake Legal Group warren-scowl-620x317 The Elizabeth Warren Hype Train Begins to Go Off the Tracks Race primary polls Politics New Hampshire Joe Biden Hyped Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story falling Elizabeth Warren Election democrats Allow Media Exception 2020

FILE – In this May 18, 2019, file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks at a house party campaign stop in Rochester, N.H. Rising disagreement among congressional Democrats over whether to pursue impeachment of President Donald Trump has had little effect on the party’s presidential candidates, who mostly are avoiding calls to start such an inquiry. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty, File)

The media love Elizabeth Warren. She’s everything they want in a candidate. Someone to whisper sweet nothings into their ears and make them feel really smart. She’s got plans, the right amount of shrill in her voice, and is just focus grouped enough to get them excited.

This love affair has led to an incredible amount of hype surrounding the Massachusetts Senator, who’s only accomplishment appears to be supporting an unconstitutional agency in the CFPB. It’s gotten to the point where she is routinely described as the presumptive front-runner. To be fair, I’ve bagged on Joe Biden to the benefit of Elizabeth Warren a bit in the past few months as well. I mean, he’s Joe Biden.

Following the most recent debate though, where Warren stumbled repeatedly when pressed about raising middle class taxes, we are seeing some problems emerge.

For starters, she’s still nowhere near the national front-runner.

Not only is Warren behind by double digits, Biden is enjoying his biggest lead since April, a time when it was all but assumed he’d be the nominee. There are other polls as well showing bad news for Warren. Emerson released their latest offering and she’s 6 points behind Biden. Worse, she’s 4 points behind Sanders, who just suffered a heart attack a month ago.

In fact, in the last seven polls published, six of them have Warren down by at least 6 points. The only poll which continues to show her close is YouGov, which has held an incredible house effect for Warren throughout the primaries. You can view all these results at RCP here.

But perhaps she’s leading in the early states? In New Hampshire, yes, but that’s to be expected. In Iowa, Nevada, South Carolina, and California, she’s behind Biden still. If Biden wins two of those four states, he’ll enter the southern primaries all but guaranteed to clean up, leaving Warren no real path.

It should be noted that Warren hasn’t simply been a mirage. There was a time when she was leading in three of those four states depending on what polls you cite. Something has changed lately though and I think it’s easy to explain.

The last debate exposed Warren for who she is. She’s inauthentic, whiny, and way too rehearsed. Democrats love her and the media swoon when she’s reading off her talking points. When she’s pressed and shows no ability to answer real questions, she suddenly is revealed for the weak candidate she is (she consistently polls worse against Trump than Biden or Sanders). There’s also the fact that her policy platform is a socialist’s dream, complete with government controlled daycare and healthcare programs that cost 3/4 of the current budget. That’s great in New York, not so great in most of the rest of the country.

I think there was a point where moderate Democrats (moderate in that context at least), who still make up the majority of their party, looked at Warren and thought she might not be so bad. At least she didn’t have blood squirting out of her eye, right? But the more she rolls out her policies and the more she’s pressed on them, the worse she looks. In some ways, it resembles the calm before Kamala Harris’ fall. You can’t hide forever behind canned lines and media plaudits. No matter how many time people call you the “real front-runner,” at some point you’ve got to actually, you know, take over as the real front-runner. Warren isn’t doing that.

For now, she’s still in the thick of things, but the longer the status quo drags on, the tougher it will be for her. The hype train is beginning to go off the tracks.

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The post The Elizabeth Warren Hype Train Begins to Go Off the Tracks appeared first on RedState.

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The Senate Is In Play for 2020

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Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, waits to participate in a mock swearing-in ceremony in the Old Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019, as the 116th Congress begins. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The Republicans are looking at a very hard choice ahead of them in 2020.

Do they stick with President Donald Trump, who still has a firm hold on his base but sees moderate voters slipping away? Or do they run against him or even convict in an impeachment trial?

A year ago – even two months ago- the notion would be absurd. But a string of bad decisions and the Democrats’ slow, methodical rollout of the impeachment inquiry are changing the numbers ahead of not just Trump’s presidential re-election, but the re-election of several key incumbents in the Senate.

Currently, the Republicans have a 53-47 edge over Democrats in the Senate. We know that Doug Jones in Alabama is in trouble, so the Republicans could pick up a seat there. However, 23 Republican seats are up for re-election, nearly 2-to-1 over the number Democrats have in 2020. Among those Republicans are several in swing states: Susan Collins, Corey Gardner, Martha McSally, and Thom Tillis. As well as those four, you see Democrats attempting to make a play against Joni Ernst of Iowa and David Perdue of Georgia.

However, with all of that said, this isn’t just to say that the Senate is in play in terms of Senator re-elections. It’s also in play in the impeachment process.

That 53-47 lead is a slim one. You don’t need that many Republicans to break away from the party vote the other way to put Trump in trouble. Several Republicans fit the bill there.

Leading the charge is Senator Mitt Romney, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump’s for a while, but has ramped up his attacks in the past couple of weeks. Susan Collins is just as likely to side with the Democrats as she is Republicans, as is Lisa Murkowski.

On the fence, you have senators like Ben Sasse, Joni Ernst, Lamar Alexander, and Martha McSally. Sasse has been a longtime critic of Trump’s, though his tone has softened a bit. McSally came out hard against impeachment, but she has recently been quieter on the subject of Trump’s Ukrainian phone call. Ernst is in a similar position as McSally, while Alexander is set to retire from his seat.

You also have guys like Mike Lee and other solid conservatives who may see this as a chance to try to right the ship. It’s a very outside chance that these guys would join in, but if the Democrats get enough evidence together, it can definitely turn the tables.

Of course, the Senate could come out 53-47 in Trump’s favor if the impeachment makes it to trial, but his actions in Syria have alienated a lot of loyal Republicans. His decision to host the G-7 summit at Dural, before he canceled the idea, was also frowned upon by many in the Senate, including those in his own party.

Right now is the time that Trump should be working closely with members of his party, and ease their concerns. But he has this unfortunate habit of lashing out through social media when he’s feeling cornered or upset, and that tends to not help his situation.

This is by no means a doomsday forecast, but it is a warning. Republicans – not just Trump – need to take a lot of things into account if it becomes a matter of getting re-elected. If Trump goes down, are these Republicans willing to go down with him? And, on the flip side of that, if they choose to abandon Trump and he beats impeachment and whoever his 2020 opponent is, how well will he and the Senators who broke from him work together past that point?

It is an incredibly difficult position many of these Republicans find themselves in. I don’t envy the choices they are going to have to make.

The post The Senate Is In Play for 2020 appeared first on RedState.

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With polls closing in Canada, Justin Trudeau is still in a dead heat

Westlake Legal Group Trudeau With polls closing in Canada, Justin Trudeau is still in a dead heat The Blog Justin Trudeau Election Canada

Today is election day in Canada and the first set of polls have already closed as I write this. It sounds as if Justin Trudeau’s future as Prime Minister is still hanging by a thread at the moment:

Voting ended in Newfoundland and Labrador, which account for seven of the 338 seats in the House of Commons…

Darrell Bricker, an Ipsos pollster, said: “The truth is it’s a coin toss right now.”…

If the Liberals are the largest party they may seek to form a minority government with the backing of the NDP.

Should the Conservatives be the largest party they may seek to govern with Quebec’s separatist Bloc Quebecois party.

The National Post reports some dirty tricks are being investigated. An unknown number of people received robocalls telling them the election was Tuesday instead of Monday:

On election day itself, a new controversy arose, with Elections Canada reporting that people in Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia had received robocalls telling them that voting was Tuesday, not Monday, CBC reported.

It was not immediately clear how many people received the robocalls.

Speaking of Tuesday, CTV says the hashtag #TrudeaulessTuesday is trending on social media:

The hashtag “#TrudeaulessTuesday” had been used more than 25,000 times on Twitter by Monday evening and was one of the top four most trending phrases on the social media platform, just 2.5 hours before the polls closed.

“Let’s pray that Canada becomes ‘Trudeauless’ again Tuesday morning,” wrote one user.

The hashtag was also widely used on Facebook posts throughout the evening.

You can track the results of the election here at the Toronto Star or at the National Post homepage. I’ll update this post if it looks like there are any surprise trends in the results but for now the expectation is that this is going to be a late night:

The post With polls closing in Canada, Justin Trudeau is still in a dead heat appeared first on Hot Air.

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This Is the Tweet That Is Going to Vault Beto to the Presidency

Westlake Legal Group BetoORourkeTheView This Is the Tweet That Is Going to Vault Beto to the Presidency periods Gender Issues Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post Election democrats Culture beto Allow Media Exception 2020 candidates 2020

2020 presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke (D) speaks on “The View” – 5/14/19. Screen grab via ABC.

Beto O’Rourke has been desperate to gain traction in the presidential race for the Democratic nomination.

He was supportive of abortion up to the day before birth. Shockingly, that didn’t do it for him.

He’s threatened to grab our guns. Oddly, that failed too.

But now, he may have really found the issue to raise him from that one percent plateau.

Feminine hygiene products.

He announced his support for the “Menstrual Equity Act” on “National Period Day,” saying “men need to join women in demanding real change.”

But as PJ Media observes, O’Rourke may be a little bit behind two other 2020 Democratic candidates, Julian Castro and Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), in his pandering on the issue.

According to GovTrack, this legislation will “increase the availability and affordability of menstrual hygiene products for individuals with limited access, and for other purposes.”

Individuals. Because men have periods too! Duh! Beto may not have gotten that memo, but Cory Booker and Julián Castro did. They also tweeted about National Period Day, but didn’t single out women as being the only sex that actually needs menstrual products:

Bad Beto.

No word yet on the other Democrats, but can they be far behind?

HT: Twitchy

The post This Is the Tweet That Is Going to Vault Beto to the Presidency appeared first on RedState.

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Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous

Westlake Legal Group Trudeau-2 Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous The Blog Justin Trudeau Election Canada

The Canadian election takes place Monday and just this week there have been at least three distinct pieces with headlines suggesting Trudeau is fighting for his political life. Here’s a bit of the one published today by the Financial Times (the others are at Bloomberg and Yahoo):

That disparity between the soaring rhetoric that powered his sweeping victory in 2015 — “sunny ways” and “doing politics differently” — and his performance over the ensuing four years has come to haunt Mr Trudeau.

“If you set yourself up to be a paragon of virtue and lord it over everyone, you need to continue to be virtuous,” said Lydia Miljan, an associate professor of political science at the University of Windsor, who draws a direct line from Mr Trudeau’s handling of the SNC controversy to his troubles now. “When the mighty fall, they fall hard.”

Mired in two scandals, one professional and one personal, Trudeau has decided his best bet is to run against two people who aren’t in the race: Donald Trump and Doug Ford, the brother of deceased former Mayor of Toronto Rob Ford.

He isn’t running for federal office, but Doug Ford’s name is everywhere in and around Canada’s largest city: in local debates, on doorsteps as candidates canvas and in attack ads…

Ragging on Ford has become Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s favorite pastime.

Last week, he mentioned Ford seven times in about 30 minutes — equaling references to Conservative leader Andrew Scheer — during a campaign stop in Markham, a suburb in the Greater Toronto Area, or GTA. This bellwether battleground has about as many seats in Parliament as the entire province of Alberta, making it key to forming a majority government.

There’s a strategy behind this. Trudeau believes his survival will depend on winning the suburbs around Toronto, areas he won easily four years ago. But his fortunes have declined since then, so now he’s running a campaign trying to frighten Canadians away from voting for his opponent. Another target of that campaign is President Trump:

Trudeau has avoided criticizing the American president, but after weeks of stagnant poll numbers, he embraced the role of Trump’s foil, saying he is the only candidate who can stand up to Trump and “the forces of populism and chaos around the world.”

“The challenge for Trudeau always was trying to keep this big, high-profile, international expectation that he’s Obama’s successor, the progressive hero of the global world,” said Ian Brodie, former chief of staff to Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper. “With Trump, being the inheritor of Obama’s progressive mantle doesn’t do any good.”

Trudeau got an assist in his role as Obama’s successor this week when Obama himself endorsed him. The Associated Press points out the hint of desperation behind this:

Sensing Trudeau is now in trouble, Barack Obama made an unprecedented endorsement by a former American president, urging Canadians to re-elect Trudeau and describing him as a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change.

Trudeau was asked if he had requested that endorsement and he didn’t deny it. So the desperation didn’t arise with Obama, it’s coming from within Trudeau’s own camp.

So what do the polls say? They have shown a tight race for weeks but today Toronto Sun opinion columnist says Trudeau’s chance of pulling out a win is looking slim:

Looking at all the polling available, Scheer and his Conservatives will win the most seats come Monday.

That includes the latest polling done for the Toronto Sun as part of the DART & Maru/Blue Voice Canada Poll.

Nationally, this poll puts the Conservatives ahead of the Liberals with a four-point lead. DART has Scheer’s party at 33% voter support compared to 29% for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals and 21% for Jagmeet Singh’s NDP. The Greens come in at 7% and the People’s Party at 2%.

“The polling suggests a minority parliament for either the Conservatives or the Liberals, dependent on two major factors — voter turnout and geography,” said pollster John Wright, a partner at DART.

Usually the party that wins the most seats forms the government by forming a coalition with one of the smaller parties, but NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has already said he won’t form a government with the conservatives. So there are a lot of wrinkles left to iron out next week, but it appears to be dawning on many people this week that Trudeau is in real trouble. We’ll find out Monday if the experts and the polls were correct. As we saw here in 2016, that’s not always the case.

The post Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous appeared first on Hot Air.

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Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous

Westlake Legal Group Trudeau-2 Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous The Blog Justin Trudeau Election Canada

The Canadian election takes place Monday and just this week there have been at least three distinct pieces with headlines suggesting Trudeau is fighting for his political life. Here’s a bit of the one published today by the Financial Times (the others are at Bloomberg and Yahoo):

That disparity between the soaring rhetoric that powered his sweeping victory in 2015 — “sunny ways” and “doing politics differently” — and his performance over the ensuing four years has come to haunt Mr Trudeau.

“If you set yourself up to be a paragon of virtue and lord it over everyone, you need to continue to be virtuous,” said Lydia Miljan, an associate professor of political science at the University of Windsor, who draws a direct line from Mr Trudeau’s handling of the SNC controversy to his troubles now. “When the mighty fall, they fall hard.”

Mired in two scandals, one professional and one personal, Trudeau has decided his best bet is to run against two people who aren’t in the race: Donald Trump and Doug Ford, the brother of deceased former Mayor of Toronto Rob Ford.

He isn’t running for federal office, but Doug Ford’s name is everywhere in and around Canada’s largest city: in local debates, on doorsteps as candidates canvas and in attack ads…

Ragging on Ford has become Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s favorite pastime.

Last week, he mentioned Ford seven times in about 30 minutes — equaling references to Conservative leader Andrew Scheer — during a campaign stop in Markham, a suburb in the Greater Toronto Area, or GTA. This bellwether battleground has about as many seats in Parliament as the entire province of Alberta, making it key to forming a majority government.

There’s a strategy behind this. Trudeau believes his survival will depend on winning the suburbs around Toronto, areas he won easily four years ago. But his fortunes have declined since then, so now he’s running a campaign trying to frighten Canadians away from voting for his opponent. Another target of that campaign is President Trump:

Trudeau has avoided criticizing the American president, but after weeks of stagnant poll numbers, he embraced the role of Trump’s foil, saying he is the only candidate who can stand up to Trump and “the forces of populism and chaos around the world.”

“The challenge for Trudeau always was trying to keep this big, high-profile, international expectation that he’s Obama’s successor, the progressive hero of the global world,” said Ian Brodie, former chief of staff to Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper. “With Trump, being the inheritor of Obama’s progressive mantle doesn’t do any good.”

Trudeau got an assist in his role as Obama’s successor this week when Obama himself endorsed him. The Associated Press points out the hint of desperation behind this:

Sensing Trudeau is now in trouble, Barack Obama made an unprecedented endorsement by a former American president, urging Canadians to re-elect Trudeau and describing him as a hard-working, effective leader who takes on big issues like climate change.

Trudeau was asked if he had requested that endorsement and he didn’t deny it. So the desperation didn’t arise with Obama, it’s coming from within Trudeau’s own camp.

So what do the polls say? They have shown a tight race for weeks but today Toronto Sun opinion columnist says Trudeau’s chance of pulling out a win is looking slim:

Looking at all the polling available, Scheer and his Conservatives will win the most seats come Monday.

That includes the latest polling done for the Toronto Sun as part of the DART & Maru/Blue Voice Canada Poll.

Nationally, this poll puts the Conservatives ahead of the Liberals with a four-point lead. DART has Scheer’s party at 33% voter support compared to 29% for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals and 21% for Jagmeet Singh’s NDP. The Greens come in at 7% and the People’s Party at 2%.

“The polling suggests a minority parliament for either the Conservatives or the Liberals, dependent on two major factors — voter turnout and geography,” said pollster John Wright, a partner at DART.

Usually the party that wins the most seats forms the government by forming a coalition with one of the smaller parties, but NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has already said he won’t form a government with the conservatives. So there are a lot of wrinkles left to iron out next week, but it appears to be dawning on many people this week that Trudeau is in real trouble. We’ll find out Monday if the experts and the polls were correct. As we saw here in 2016, that’s not always the case.

The post Justin Trudeau is in trouble and progressives are nervous appeared first on Hot Air.

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John Yoo: The Framers never would have wanted to see impeachment happen within a year of a presidential election

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It’s strange to see a man of the right, which prides itself on following the constitutional text, divining a time constraint on impeachment that isn’t actually in the document. It’s not as if the Framers were unwilling to specify any limits on the impeachment power; it’s famously restricted to “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Nor has Yoo’s view been the view traditionally taken by Congress. Various politicos pointed out last night on Twitter after this bit aired on Fox that Andrew Johnson was impeached in February of a presidential election year. Mitch McConnell had precedent to point to when he roadblocked Merrick Garland’s confirmation on grounds that it was an election year and therefore voters should decide which party gets to fill Scalia’s seat. Yoo doesn’t even have that.

Besides, the nature of the impeachment process means that the will of the electorate will naturally be priced into the calculations made by Congress. For reasons of sheer self-preservation, the House won’t proceed with an impeachment which it has reason to believe would be strongly opposed by American voters. They have to face those voters every 24 months, after all. That’s been Pelosi’s fear all along — that House Democrats would indulge their id by impeaching Trump for flimsy reasons, Senate Republicans would swat them down during a trial, and then a voter backlash to Democratic overreach would lead to Trump being reelected to a second term and the House returned to Republican hands. If the people believe that the House has unfairly usurped their sovereign role in deciding who should lead the executive branch, they’ll deal with them accordingly. Soon.

It’s also easy to imagine worst-case scenarios in which a president would need to be removed immediately for the good of the country. Imagine that Rachel Maddow’s darkest Russiagate fantasy about Trump being a Kremlin-controlled asset had turned out to be true but somehow we didn’t discover it until January 2020. Should Americans be obliged to sit back and let the Kremlin steer U.S. policy for 10 months until the election because it’s somehow “too late” to impeach? Absurd.

The weirdest part of Yoo going this route is that there are much stronger arguments available for defeating an attempt to remove Trump from office. The GOP’s eventually going to settle on the ol’ “bad but not impeachable” defense, which in a sense is foolproof. Because “high crimes and misdemeanors” is vague, virtually anything short of outright treason can be said to have failed to clear the bar. Smart Republicans like Rob Portman and Lamar Alexander are already maneuvering towards that position:

Tim Miller has a piece out today arguing why “bad but not impeachable” is wrong in this case but his logic works even better to counter Yoo’s argument: You can’t leave it to an election to settle whether the president’s committed an impeachable offense if the offense might affect the election itself. If Trump really was withholding desperately needed military aid from Ukraine until they coughed up dirt on the Democratic frontrunner, Ukrainian leaders might have concluded they had no choice but to provide it. Maybe that would have meant a diligent investigation of Burisma, or maybe it would have meant fabricating something whole cloth to damage Biden and satisfy Trump. If American voters had chosen next fall between Trump and Biden based in part on a fake Biden scandal which Trump himself had helped engineer, in what universe would that be a fair referendum on whether Trump had done something impeachable? Again, it’s absurd.

The House gets to impeach when it likes and voters get to whack them hard for it if they agree with the president that this was a “witch hunt.” There’s no time limit and there shouldn’t be.

The post John Yoo: The Framers never would have wanted to see impeachment happen within a year of a presidential election appeared first on Hot Air.

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CNN Scrambles to Save Elizabeth Warren Right As She’s About to Be Waylaid

Westlake Legal Group TulsiGabbardAPimage-620x317 CNN Scrambles to Save Elizabeth Warren Right As She’s About to Be Waylaid tulsi gabbard Syria Politics media bias kamala harris Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Erin Burnett Elizabeth Warren Election democrats debate Cut Off Commercial Break CNN Allow Media Exception 2020

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, speaks during the second of two Democratic presidential primary debates hosted by CNN Wednesday, July 31, 2019, in the Fox Theatre in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

If you had any doubts about who CNN was rooting for going into the debate last night, we received the answer throughout the night. Over and over, Warren was given deference, extra time, and had her opponents cut off by the moderators.

Here’s a chart of how much more Warren got to speak compared to everyone else.

Even among the other frontrunners, Warren got almost a full 10 minutes extra vs. Biden and Sanders. That’s pretty remarkable given how absolutely boring and uncharismatic she is. But there’s a simple reason she got so much extra time. The moderators were favoring her big time.

There was no bigger example of that than this would-be exchange between Warren and Tulsi Gabbard. I say “would be” because CNN made sure it didn’t actually happen.

You’ll no doubt recall Gabbard’s ending of Kamala Harris’ campaign back in the second debate. She absolutely lit Kamala up and left her stammering over her prosecutorial record. Harris essentially collapsed going forward and is now an afterthought.

No doubt, CNN was worried she might do the same to Warren tonight and the moderators were quick to make sure it couldn’t happen. Not only did they cut off Gabbard as she was about to waylay Warren, they rushed to commercial so she couldn’t even interject and point out what they were doing.

Here’s some reaction.

You can expect this to continue. As I’ve said before, the media love Warren because she makes them feel smart. Joe Biden is currently burning down and they hate Bernie, so Warren is their choice. You’d think CNN would be a little less obvious about it, but I guess not.

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Tulsi Gabbard Slams CNN at Debate, Exposes the Incredible Incoherence of the Democrat Position On Syria

Westlake Legal Group f1c61773-57dd-4e5a-96c7-3045358f05e5-620x317 Tulsi Gabbard Slams CNN at Debate, Exposes the Incredible Incoherence of the Democrat Position On Syria tulsi gabbard Syria Politics Obama Administration mistake Kurds Joe Biden Islamists Incoherant Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Elizabeth Warren elections Election democrats debate CNN assad Allow Media Exception Al Qaeda 2020

While some on the right can’t stand Tulsi Gabbard because “she’s a Russian agent” and all that hysteria, I actually appreciate that she tries to make coherent, consistent points. Do I agree with her on much of anything she says on policy. No, but there’s something to be said about not talking out of both sides one’s mouth and that’s exactly what we saw on Syria from every candidate on the stage last night minus Gabbard.

Let’s take this clip as an example.

Now, while most will focus on the slam on CNN (and it is nice), I’m much more interested in the separation she puts between herself and the other Democrats. While they all struggled to incoherently explain why they spent years demanding we leave the Middle East but why we now must remain in Syria to fight a NATO ally (a sucky one, but one nonetheless until action is taken), Gabbard at least gets to the heart of the matter.

The war against Assad, just like the war in Libya, was a ridiculous miscalculation. Attempting to change the regime in Syria, while giving warm and fuzzies to those in the foreign policy establishment in Washington, only helped create and exacerbate a humanitarian crisis and setup a situation where we were either going to still have Assad or end up with Al Qaeda aligned Islamists taking power. How is that a choice we had any business sticking our nose in?

Joe Biden tried to lie about his previous position, insisting the war was never about removing Assad. A reporter from The Washington Post said he was “right.” That’s simply not true.

Regime change was the official government policy of the Obama administration for at least the first three years of the civil war in Syria. We all remember the demands for Assad to step down and the saber rattling about how he will go one way or the other. The problem was that by helping propagate that civil war, we fed into a situation that would take the lives of over 500,000 people, including 50,000 children. No one seems to want to own that. Everyone in Washington wants to pretend that it’s not possible for us to have made a bad situation worse, yet that’s exactly what we did.

I’m sure by writing that, I’ll be accused of being an Assad apologist because critical thinking isn’t allowed on much of the right when it comes to foreign policy issues. The reality is that unlike the myriad of neoconservative blue check-marks on Twitter, I actually have family in Syria. This isn’t a matter of ideology for me. It’s a matter of accepting that sometimes there are no perfect solutions and recognizing that we can indeed make matters worse. Minorities in Syria (like my family) feared Islamist rebel groups far more than they feared Assad, who before the outbreak of war was one of the more secular, benign dictators in the region.

Tulsi Gabbard is trying to make a fairly simple point that takes the entirety of what has transpired into account. Perhaps she really does just love Assad, but that’s a weak minded argument to make against her. Her position has at least been consistent. She was against getting involved from the beginning and she’s been shown to be more right than wrong on the matter. The rest of the Democrat field flailing about, now wanting to remain in Syria (and Biden even said he wants a surge last night back into Northern Syria) after initially screaming to get out, shows just how non-thinking most of these people are. At one point last night, Elizabeth Warren argued we should leave troops in Syria and then a few seconds later said she wanted to pull all troops from the Middle East. You make sense of that. We also saw contradictory bantering like this.

I could keep going about the intricacies here (see Mike Ford’s explainers for more information), but I’m certain everyone is so set in stone on this issue that it’ll make little difference. What I will say is this. The smartest among us are often the dumbest. Just because someone has “expert” on their chyron does not mean they actually know what they are talking about. The United States miscalucated on Libya and Syria. That’s the point Gabbard has been consistently making, even when the rest of her party was cheer-leading those interventions. That may not matter to the talking head sitting in an MSNBC studio today, but it should matter to the rest of us, and whether you agree with Gabbard or not, at least be intellectually honest enough to admit that the war in Syria didn’t start in 2017.

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John Hayward Absolutely Nails the Stakes of 2020, Conservatism, and Donald Trump

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President Donald Trump arrives with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Attorney General William Barr to speak about the census in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, Thursday, July 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

As we deal with impeachment fever, the coming election, and the absolute insanity coming from the Democratic party, all these different factors have left gaping holes between most conservatives and the beltway class that claims the same general ideology. Obsessions over decorum vs. results have become the major dividing line. When Trump cussed at his rally the other night, I didn’t even have to open Twitter to know exactly who would rush to virtue signal their disapproval. Other’s simply didn’t care because they see a far more dangerous threat from the Democratic party in 2020 than Trump’s filthy mouth.

The differences seem almost not reconcilable at this point, with some former conservative icons like George Will actively stumping for a Democrat victory. It’s no coincidence that people like Will have the least to lose in that scenario.

That leads me to this thread Mollie Hemingway shared yesterday. It’s written by John Hayward and perfectly captures the angst and thinking behind much of the support for Trump.

I’m going to lay it all out here to digest.

I’ll cut in here to say this is exactly correct. While NE corridor conservatives thumb their noses up at those icky evangelicals (and Christians in general who support Trump), they never stopped to consider the actual realities at play. The “culture wars” are not a new thing and conservatives got their clock cleaned during the Obama years. It’s only gotten worse under Trump, as trans issues and the absolute insanity of the LGBTQ lobby have taken hold.

Christians didn’t vote for Trump and don’t support Trump now because they are hypocrites. They are doing it for self-survival. We just had a 2020 Democrat candidate vow to punish churches who don’t support same-sex marriage. Not only that, everyone in the audience cheered wildly at the idea. Not a single legacy media outlet pushed back, nor did any of the other candidates.

There is never going to be a line. They are never going to stop. That’s why so many saw Trump winning, and by virtue saving the courts, as so important. George Will may not be affected, but millions of Americans feel that weight.

Let’s continue.

Exactly. Conservatism isn’t just a “principle” or ideology. It’s the act of actually trying to conserve something. Any Republican that is actively throwing the game because they suppose it makes them moral or virtuous isn’t conserving anything. Perhaps they can feel some personal good about that, but they also don’t get to obscure the realities of their decisions.

There’s no better evidence for this than how much conservatives have continued to lose the culture wars no matter who is President. The judiciary is the last line of defense. There is no backup plan, no valient media riding in on a white horse to finally sway public opinion in a fair way. So some anti-Trump conservatives can “muh judges” all they want. It’s those judges that will ensure we have even a fighting chance over the next several decades.

Again, the left are not going to stop. It’s just a few years ago that it was considered a conspiracy theory to think Democrats might strip churches of tax exemption over teaches on homosexuality. How’s that worked out? Heck, we’ve went from “we aren’t going to take your guns” to “we support federal confiscation programs” in a matter of months.

The problem is that there are a sizable amount of conservative influencers who’ve grown fat and happy in the Acela Corridor that are perfectly fine with their profession becoming even more niche. They think they can ride the lightening and come out unscathed on the other end. I think they are mistaken.

Look, at this point, what Hayward is saying wont move the needle with these people, but it still needs to be said. If they want to sit on the sidelines, fine. What they don’t get to do is work to get a Democrat elected and then rejoin the party in 2021 as thought leaders. They don’t get to pretend the consequences they are cheering on don’t actually exist. They will have no grounds to complain about anything the left does and as I’ve said now three times, the left are not going to stop.

If a conservative is going to go out on Twitter and wring their hands over that CNN LGTBQ+ whatever town hall last week, then they should be ready to do something to stop it from becoming a reality. If they aren’t, then they aren’t conserving anything. They are just keeping faux religious tenants. We’ve got real religions for that.

Battles don’t wait for you to feel good enough about your own side to fight them.

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