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Another thing with Trump is that he mostly won in Democrat states. It doesn’t matter what happened in the primary, there is no realistic chance that New York votes Republican.

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Sisyphus said on May 4th, 2016 at 3:04 pm

Yeah. Boy. On the one hand, I’m kind of glad that Trump is the GOP candidate, because I really don’t think he can win. On the other hand, there’s this little voice in my head that says, “The media gave him over $2 billion in free advertising in the primary…and they hate Hillary.” It says, “Lots of pretty smart people thought Trump would fail in the primary, like FiveThirtyEight.com, and he still won.” It says, “There’s a lot of really stupid people who somehow think that Scott Adams isn’t a hack.” That voice is what makes me worry.

I’d rather we had better democratic candidates (Joe Biden, how I wish you had run…or Warren or Sherrod Brown). I think Hillary’s a little too eager to flex our military muscles down here and tends to resort to force first because she’s afraid of being called soft. I suspect that if Hillary wins, we’re likely going to get involved in at least one, if not two, major military engagements within 4 years (my bet is North Korea and either Palestine or Syria). I don’t think Sanders was a better choice, but I don’t think Hillary’s the best we, as a country, can do. I wonder – is this what people felt like when they voted Buchannan or Harding or Pierce?

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supergp said on May 4th, 2016 at 3:56 pm

I am so worried that in half a year, the horse might learn to sing. #Trumpocalypse

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Jeff R. said on May 4th, 2016 at 4:12 pm

I think people tend to forget that Hillary’s negatives may not be as high as they can go. She’s never actually been seriously campaigned against by a Republican (Lazio ran a hands-off campaign and Spencer was a lets-pretend-to-run-someone-against-her thing.) When the kinds of attacks that Obama and Sanders wouldn’t think of making actually start going on in prime time her net favorables could drop to within the margin of error of Trumps.

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I don’t like Hillary (and the thought of Bill being around the White House for four to eight years again makes me nauseous), but the thought of that temper tantrum piece of shit egomaniac with the emotional control of a two year old being anywhere near the nuclear launch codes makes it no contest: Hillary all the way.

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Lord Riven said on May 4th, 2016 at 5:27 pm

“As does the one where Sanders applied for conscientious objector status during the Vietnam War. And the one where he called for the abolishment of the Armed Forces in the 70s. And the one where he was arguing that military budgets should be halved in the 90s.”

Everything wrong about Americans can be summed up by how negative these traits will play in the election. God forbid someone have a conscious and not automatically fellate our Brave Men And Women In Uniform.

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Joe Helfrich said on May 4th, 2016 at 5:32 pm

My main concern at this point is due to the high negatives of both presumptive candidates, and their highly polarized public personas, predicting the makeup of the electorate that actually shows up in November is going to be very difficult. There are people who simply won’t turn out to vote for either of them, or will vote for the other candidate in a ‘cut off your nose to spite your face’ scenario, and that’s going to play havoc with all the models. Plus, there’s general fatigue of the old familiar faces; from 1980 until 2012, a Clinton or a Bush has been President, Vice President, or Secretary of State, as well as those same people or family members being Senators or Governors. The streak ended in 2012 just so people of those names could run for President.

I honestly think we’re headed to the lowest turnout year in quite some time. I don’t trust a single poll that’s matched the two of them, and won’t until we’re much closer to the election and the Nate Silvers of the world have been able to get a look at voter engagement for the general. And even then, I’ll be skeptical.

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Sean C. said on May 4th, 2016 at 6:33 pm

@Jeff R.: Hillary has been the object of a near-non-stop Republican smear campaign for 25 years. There is nothing they can throw at her that they haven’t already.

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Jeff R. said on May 4th, 2016 at 6:55 pm

@Sean C.: There are plenty of lines of attack that have never significantly crossed the boundaries of the modern dual epistemically closed media worlds. When we get to the national ad campaigns and debates, those barriers are coming down.

(Assuming there are debates this year. If I were advising HRC, I’d be strongly considering refusing to debate Trump, either directly or engineering a negotiations breakdown.)

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mygif

$20 says that Trump will be the president

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Michael Straight said on May 5th, 2016 at 1:32 am

Got an example of one of these lines of attack that Hilary supposedly hasn’t faced yet?

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I still have this feeling that eventually Trump will finally just admit that he doesn’t really WANT to be President, which is far more work than he is prepared for, and that all of this was just an introduction to his newest Reality Show.

And then we get Huckabee as the Republican Nominee!

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Jeff R. said on May 5th, 2016 at 11:46 am

@Michael: Sure. The average non-fox-viewer who isn’t wonkish enough to religiously follow Vox isn’t currently aware of Juanita Broadrick’s account. That’s not going to last.

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(Assuming there are debates this year. If I were advising HRC, I’d be strongly considering refusing to debate Trump, either directly or engineering a negotiations breakdown.)

That would be terrible advice. Hillary is an excellent debater and Trump is actually a bad one when he’s not performing for your standard audience of Republican flying monkeys. His jibes will lose a lot of their effectiveness when nobody is allowed to cheer him (as is standard for Presidential debates), and when he isn’t allowed to shut down his opponent by talking over them he gets hit badly. Plus, he’s a rampant misogynist and he’ll look like a bully when he cracks about Clinton’s looks, which he will do because he can’t help himself.

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@Jeff: I had to look her up, but I remember all that from back when Bill was president. No one cared then (all of this bullshit actually increased his popularity) and certainly no one will care now. Are you seriously arguing that after 2 years of the Republicans publicly calling her a traitor that a dismissed rape allegation against her husband from 2 decades ago will change anything?

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@Michael: I’m not sure if criticism of hawkishness from the right counts, but it comes to mind.

Criticism of hawkishness from the left is very well-known by now. But there’s a right-wing variant of it too, a mix of isolationism, pragmatic reasonableness, and self-interest on the rare occasion they’re all on the same side. Ron Paul, for example, described 9/11 as blowback. Trump has said that 9/11 was partially Bush’s fault (I can’t be bothered to look up the exact phrasing, but if you Google Romney’s speech on Trump, he objects to it there), and he would be happy to blame Clinton for it too. Voted for the Iraq war while in the Senate, the other Clinton laid the groundwork while president… Except Trump would not be making a L’Internationale no-blood-for-oil argument, he’s making a screw-them-all, not-our-problem argument. Big difference.

It’s only arguably true that she’s never faced that criticism before, and I’m not saying I find it persuasive, but I think it’s worth mentioning.

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Alan Pugh said on May 6th, 2016 at 8:03 am

When a candidate has been running over a year, has collected a record-setting $200 million in donations, and has won twenty states, and yet he’s an “unknown quantity,” it really demonstrates how broken things are.

Unknown versus who? We all know Rubio and Kasich, who each won a whopping one state. Sanders has been an elected official since 1981 and federally since 1991. He trumps Clinton on experience by double and gave us 8.5 hours of straight talk during a 2010 filibuster.

That’s not an unknown quantity, that’s the party and the media doing everything they can to slow down progressive candidates so they can continue the shift to the right.

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Sean C. said on May 6th, 2016 at 4:26 pm

@Alan Pugh: Sanders is an unknown quantity because he has never been the subject of nationwide political attention before 2015, and he has never had the entire GOP smear machine running hard negative against him. His political experience has been confined to Vermont, where he is well-known and well-loved.

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@Cyrus Correct me if I’m wrong, but hasn’t Trump been going around saying he’ll force other countries to basically give us tribute at gunpoint? In any case, Trump has been for every war before he decided he was against it, like Libya or Iraq.

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mygif

I think Trump’s going to win, because he dominates the narrative.

Clinton is basically running on a two-point platform:

1.) She’s a career politician with decades of experience;
2.) She’s not Donald Trump.

This is one of the worst possible platforms to run on.

The first one might have worked in other elections (and, if Trump wins, it might very well work in 2020), but in *this* election, people are sick to death of “politics as usual” and “The System,” and are in love with the idea of a political outsider who doesn’t answer to “The Party” and “Special Interests.” It’s why, instead of just walking in and claiming the Democratic nomination virtually unchallenged, Clinton is having such a hard time against Sanders, a Socialist and minor figure that few people had ever heard of.

As for point #2, “I’m not [The Other Guy] is not a winning platform. It never has been. It can’t be. It only tells them what you’re *not*, not what you *are.* It’s one of the big reasons Dubya beat Kerry and Obama beat Romney. It’s why Trump blew all of the other Republican candidates out of the water. When your position is “I’m not The Other Guy,” people aren’t thinking about *you.* They’re thinking about The Other Guy.

Trump says he’ll Make America Great Again. Clinton says she’s not Trump. Hence, Clinton *won’t* Make America Great Again. (Yes, that’s horribly flawed logic and completely stupid. It doesn’t matter. It’ll be in the back of people’s brains as they go to the voting booths.)

Trump’s unpopular because he ran his mouth and said a lot of stupid inflammatory shit, but wait until he starts campaigning in the general election. He radiates confidence (even if it’s unwarranted) that Clinton does not. He has a sort of charm (albiet a loudmouth, scumbaggy kind of charm); Clinton does not. Expect the polling numbers to change significantly once the general election campaign kicks in.

Now, there’s still the very real chance that Trump’s victory in the Republican race was a pyrrhic one and he sabotaged his chances in the general election. But I wouldn’t count on that. If I were a gambling man, I’d bet on President Trump.

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Fraser said on May 9th, 2016 at 4:06 am

“but in *this* election, people are sick to death of “politics as usual” and “The System,” and are in love with the idea of a political outsider who doesn’t answer to “The Party” and “Special Interests.” ”

People are always sick of politics as usual and the system. Always. Trump’s supporters have more specific issues: they’re sick of not getting what they want. They’re sick of their jobs getting outsourced (I’m with them on that one), of Obamacare not getting overturned, that a Christian nation is allowing Muslims to supposedly take over, that it’s not like the good old days when men were men and women were women.Trump’s hatemongering is the same vision Republicans have been pushing since the 1980s, that if they vote for him, he’ll fix all that. He’s not just offering himself as a political outsider but as someone who’s willing to insult Mexicans, Muslims and women and never back down in the face of “political correctness.” And that after failing to win in Iraq or Afghanistan, he’ll conquer ISIS/Iraq/Iran and take their oil, wall off the Mexican border and make them pay for it, etc., etc. And for a lot of people on the right, that vision of American Empire is pretty appealing.
The assumption that because Sanders voters want change, they’ll buy what Trump’s selling, is just nonsensical. I wouldn’t rule out a Trump victory, but not for the reasons you cite.

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mygif

If I were a gambling man, I’d bet on President Trump.

If I’m reading this right, people who actually are gambling men disagree.

It’s true that Trump won (mainly) on opposition to politics as usual… in the Republican primary, against a weak field. The claim that the field was weak is hard to be scientific about, admittedly, but there’s definitely a big difference between the Republican primary and the general election. Democrats and people who don’t vote in primaries may not enjoy politics as usual, but I doubt they hate politics as usual enough to vote for Trump.

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It’s also worth mentioning that nobody in the Republican Party could muster up a convincing rebuttal to Trump’s arguments because they’ve been pushing much the same line of thought for several decades. The difference between Jeb Bush and Donald Trump is basically nuance–Bush wants to discriminate and exploit Mexicans, while Trump wants to deport them. It’s awful hard for Bush to strike a strong, decisive tone against Trump while simultaneously explaining to hard-right voters that he still hates the minorities of the world just like they do.

Clinton, on the other hand, will be able to eviscerate his arguments without having to worry about her own base tearing her apart for apostasy. She can say a lot of the things that none of the Republican candidates could, and Trump has no defense against those things because his entire policy is basically cribbed out of the back of a Jack Chick tract that someone peed on.

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Chris K said on May 9th, 2016 at 12:59 pm

Clinton is basically running on a two-point platform:

1.) She’s a career politician with decades of experience;
2.) She’s not Donald Trump.

Clinton is also not currently campaigning against Donald Trump. If she wins the nomination, and she continues to run on the platform of “you’d have to be an idiot to vote for that guy,” then you’re 100% correct, she’ll absolutely lose, and deservedly so. I’m hopeful that she’s learned something from Ann Richards and Al Gore, though.

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mygif

The idea of any of those people becoming POTUS makes me want to kill myself.

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I dislike Trump. That said, what’s laughable to me are the people who think Hillary is a better option. She is not! The only people who think this, are bias liberals (like the author of this piece) that have digested Hillary’s many blatant lies as to be something else. Meaning, many Democrats are phony, naïve and perhaps liars just like Hillary.

Furthermore, the Democrat Party is not “hyperpolarized” ? Hillary, who has a MASSIVE machine behind her, is unable to put away a crazy old socialist. Her crowds/events are boring snoozers, while Bernie’s base is fired-up! Let’s stop playing pretend, the Democrats are also polarized.

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