The Supreme Court voted unanimously Monday that Electoral College electors cannot go rogue, but must cast their ballot in accordance with the rules of their state. In 2016, a few did go rogue, in Colorado and Washington state, when they refused to vote for Hillary Clinton, the popular vote winner in those states, and voted for a write-in candidate. This SCOTUS vote is seen as favorable to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. This is an agreement among fifteen states, and the District of Columbia — so far — to award all of their electoral votes to whichever presidential candidate wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states. Enough states to represent 270 electoral votes are needed for the compact to have legal force, and even then there will probably be legal challenges such as the one that was heard by the Supreme Court today. This was a glass half full decision. The Electoral College has not been abolished but on the other hand, some constitutional ambiguity has been resolved and the NPVIC has arguably benefited, because electors cannot go rogue now. NBC News: The November general election is not actually a direct vote for the presidential candidates. Voters instead choose a slate of electors appointed in their states by the political parties. Those electors meet in December to cast their ballots, which are counted during a joint session of Congress in January. The court’s opinion said presidential electors must act as their states require, which in most of the nation means voting for the candidate who won the popular vote in their states. In Maine and Nebraska, presidential electors are guided by the votes of congressional districts. If the court had ruled the other way, then individual electors who decided to vote as they wished in a close race could potentially have the power decide who wins. […] Harvard Law professor Larry Lessig, who advocates Electoral College reform, told the court that nothing in the Constitution gives states any authority to restrict how an elector can vote, because they act in a federal role when meeting as the Electoral College. […] Lessig said he hoped the controversy would encourage more states to adopt a system in which they would assign all of their electors to the candidate who wins the nationwide popular vote for president. This is some progress. We take what we get on any given day, any step forward is welcome. This story just broke, so it will be updated, when more is determined about the impact of the court’s opinion. What we know about the Electoral College is that it is a broken system. The Founding Fathers put it in place as a fail safe system, to prevent precisely the kind of abnormality that took place in the 2016 election. It utterly failed. So now it needs to be revamped, and as the Harvard professor said, at least now there is more clarity.
Poor Donald Trump. All he ever wanted to do was be president. He sought the title, not the actual job. He wants the good stuff, the cheers and the crowds, being photographed with celebrities, cameras and flashbulbs and glory. And of course it’s cool to have a bullet proof limo and a luxurious bunker, because you never know, and to be able to send Marine 1 out for pizza. But the job beyond that sucks. You know it, and I know it, and he knows that we know it. Donald hates the gig but Vladimir says he can’t quit, or else. And if that isn’t bad enough, the rest of the GOP won’t stop bugging him. Lindsey didn’t talk about anything else on the golf course. He kept demanding that Donald actually get up in front of people and say something about the state of the country and what he intends to do about it, because — well, because that’s what a president does. So, okay, fine, Donald will read off the teleprompter, and he’s doing it for you, you guys, Lindsey, Mitch, all of youse. And since there is no plan and never has been one for this administration other than Fox News talking points, well by golly, that’s what the GOP platform for 2020 is going to be. Plain and simple. Roger Ailes was just given his own forge and bellows in Hell, because his vision has manifested, and Satan is mightily pleased. Trump’s Mt. Rushmore address was pure Tucker Carlson talking points, with a light rewrite by Stephen Miller and that isn’t coincidental. Where Trump and Fox News are concerned, the past is prologue, no matter how hard he might rage tweet at them. Trump and Fox News are symbiotically joined at the hip and will remain so until surgically separated by the electorate, at which time Trump will probably slink off to OANN and Fox will regroup. But until then, here’s what it was July 3, and this is what it’s going to be until November 3. Axios: Trump vs. Carlson: Below are grabs from Carlson monologues over the past month, followed by quotes from Trump’s July 3 speech. Carlson: “For more than a month, mobs of violent crazy people have roamed this country, terrorizing citizens and destroying things.” Trump: “Angry mobs are trying to tear down statues of our Founders, deface our most sacred memorials, and unleash a wave of violent crime in our cities.” Carlson: “The education cartel, enforced on your children, enforces their demands.” Trump: “In our schools, our newsrooms, even our corporate boardrooms, there is a new far-left fascism that demands absolute allegiance.” Carlson: “Few people ever could have imagined that Teddy Roosevelt would be canceled. Roosevelt was the most popular president in American history.” Trump: “One of their political weapons is ‘Cancel Culture.'” And in a separate part of the speech, “Theodore Roosevelt exemplified the unbridled confidence of our national culture and identity. … The American people will never relinquish the bold, beautiful, and untamed spirit of Theodore Roosevelt.” Carlson: “For weeks we’ve asked, ‘Who will stand up for this country?’ And the answer we’re learning is Americans. Americans will. It’s up to them. Small groups of citizens are beginning to come forward to defend their laws, defend their history and their culture.” Trump: “They think the American people are weak and soft and […]
There are none so deaf as they who will not hear. Trump is always having an old tweet or tape show up to bite him in the butt. The Meidas Touch compiled some of these gaffes into a brand new clip. 📺 NEW VIDEO The more you lie, and demean, and collude, the more credibility you lose. #TrumpHasNoCredibility pic.twitter.com/64gAT0xpDM — MeidasTouch.com (@MeidasTouch) July 5, 2020 Like the song asks, when will they ever learn?
We’ve all seen the photos, where Donald Trump preens and panders to Vladimir Putin. We’ve seen the handshake, where Trump’s hand is underneath Putin’s, a subtle yet obvious hint of who is dominant in the relationship. And it’s widely known that “the president dissuades, if not prohibits, the mentioning of any intelligence which is not favorable to Russia.” Last week, the lid finally blew off when it was revealed that Putin has paid bounties to Taliban rebels in Afghanistan to kill American troops. Former ambassador Michael McFaul, nails the Putin/Trump dynamic in a Washington Post editorial, which is both pithy and powerful. While deeply disturbing, this effort by Putin is not surprising: It follows a clear pattern of ignoring international norms, rules and laws — and daring the United States to do anything about it. Putin sees the United States as his central enemy. He fears our democratic values; believes that we actively promote these values to undermine autocrats, including himself; and loathes the liberal international order, which, in his view, serves American hegemony and weakens Russia. This latest act is designed to keep the United States bogged down in Afghanistan. More alarming is President Trump’s response: Nothing. This, too, follows a pattern of fealty before Putin, as the president has consistently praised Putin, dismissed Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election, never criticized Russian annexation of Crimea, and uttered not a word about violations of human rights and growing autocracy in Russia. Trump’s embrace of Putin, despite the clear costs to U.S. national security, has tightened. But this latest moment of indifference — silence about the killing of American soldiers — marks a new low. […] Equally disturbing, Trump’s alibi for his lack of a response to the apparent Russian-ordered contract killing of American soldiers in Afghanistan is incompetence. The Washington Post Fact Checker staff has documented more than 19,000 falsehoods uttered by Trump as of June. But for the sake of argument, let’s assume that Trump was not orally briefed about this intelligence. That in itself is a damning indictment of the president and his national security team. National security adviser Robert O’Brien receives the Presidential Daily Brief, as do other senior national security officials. Why did none of them tell Trump about this intelligence since the White House learned of it last year, especially before he called Putin a half-dozen times, invited him back to the Group of Seven or announced American troop reductions in Germany? During my five years in the Obama administration, the president reviewed relevant intelligence before calling any head of state or undertaking any major foreign policy decision. That process does not appear to be functioning in the Trump administration. […] But even if Trump just learned about the bounties, he has still not said what he will do about them. Instead, he has denounced the reporting on this intelligence as “Just another HOAX,” again defending Putin instead of siding with U.S. intelligence officials and our soldiers. It’s no wonder Putin thought he could order the killing of American soldiers and face no serious consequences. What a cast of characters. The KGB assassin who rose to become dictator of Russia and one of the world’s richest men and the trust fund baby, game show host, who improbably and impossibly became the leader of the free world — with the KGB assassin’s help. There is no telling […]
If Salvador Dali was to characterize the current Washington hellscape as the Garden of Eden, Jared Kushner would appear as the serpent, hands down. Kushner has been touted as “the de facto president of the United States,” and Trump turned over all the day to day functions of government to unelected-official Kushner early on, which infuriated Steve Bannon. Bannon got himself a seat on the National Security Council, as you may recall, and it was he, not Kushner, who was supposed to be in charge of the realignment of world power. After all, Bannon had read “The Art Of War” when not busy in Hollywood penning screenplays about Shakespearean crips and bloods, so he had the greater claim to knowledge of these matters over Kushner, you see. Jared and Ivanka bopped Bannon, along with Reince Priebus, John Kelly and many others, and they reign supreme in the White House, raking in the cash and disgracing themselves and America in the eyes of the world. Both Jared and Ivanka believe themselves to be masters of the universe and they are oblivious to the fact that they are both twits without substance, and that whatever they’ve done in life has been on daddy’s dime — before it became the taxpayer’s dime, to the tune of $82 Million a year. This video is a good encapsulation of how hubris and failure is ingrained in the Trump family culture.
No, I’m not hitting the sauce on 4th of July, but I think Kanye West must be. We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States 🇺🇸! #2020VISION — ye (@kanyewest) July 5, 2020 You have my full support! — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 5, 2020 Oh Lordy he is off his meds again. Please do a well check on him. Does he have fireworks 👀 — Todd O 🅱️🅾️ 🏠 🥀 (@Maltomash) July 5, 2020 You ain't even president of your house🤷🏽♀️ — jadarenee (@jadarenee) July 5, 2020 I never wished more that there was a god in heaven this very day. Yet, with this inexplicable dumbfuck move, I have never more certain that they wasn’t. — The Rube Report (@GuadalahonkyToo) July 5, 2020 I know that Melania has lowered the bar for First Lady but I don’t think Kim can slither under it. — Barbara Malmet (@B52Malmet) July 5, 2020 Kanye reading this tweet sober tomorrow morning pic.twitter.com/eqmxjGKkBc — Banos 🇯🇲 (@SDR_490) July 5, 2020 What is the most reasonable explanation for this? The people in the alternate universe told Kanye to do this; Kanye had way too much to drink at the bar-b-cue and fell down the 13th Amendment trapdoor; Kim wants to be the next Melania; Somebody lined Kanye’s MAGA hat with mercury and his brain is gone; Kanye is so effing stupid he thinks life really is a TV show, just like Trump. Here’s a great SNL clip that addresses this. UPDATE: 7:55 p.m. PDT Kanye West says he's running for President. He had previously said he was going to run in 2020, but then said he'd postpone his run to 2024 https://t.co/7WZZFlF5K1 — Christopher Donato (@chrisdonato04) July 5, 2020 Somebody is loaded or crazy or both today. Or, maybe his BFF Donald Trump phoned him and cried that his fee fees were hurt so Kanye decided he’d play president later, ya spose? What a world we live in. But, on the other hand, you can’t blame Kanye. He’s already seen a completely unqualified, mentally unstable moron get elected, why would he think he couldn’t do the same? Trump is sending a terrific message to America.
The game show host in the White House gave a Hollywood style shout out to the late Frederick Douglass in 2017, implying that he was alive, and it was risibly and typically Trump. CNN: “I am very proud now that we have a museum on the National Mall where people can learn about Reverend King, so many other things,” Trump said. “Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who’s done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more, I notice.” – Trump added: “Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, and millions more black Americans who made America what it is today. Big impact.” This is the level of comprehension with which Trump is able to deal with the history of systemic racism, as we saw at Mt. Rushmore, when he somnambulantly read the same names from a teleprompter, with all the gravity and empathy that one would use to intone the ingredients in a cake recipe, or something else they found equally trivial. When Trump’s not at a rally, exclusively, he’s going through the motions of governing. He hates it probably as much as we hate seeing him do it. – Here are five descendants of Frederick Douglass, reading his speech before the Abolitionist Society in 1852, after he escaped slavery. It was quite a piece of work then and it resonates particularly now, through these young people who are his descendants, and part of his legacy. – 6:58 in length If you want to read the full text, here’s a link. I’ll bet many people, if not most of us, never thought of it from this perspective before.
So much for the magical thinking of Trump world, where COVID-19 is minimized, if it’s considered at all. Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, in South Dakota with Junior to speak at a fundraiser and celebrate the fireworks show with Trump at Mt. Rushmore, has tested positive for the coronavirus. New York Times: Ms. Guilfoyle is the third person in possible proximity to Mr. Trump known to have contracted the virus. A personal valet who served Mr. Trump his food and the press secretary for Vice President Mike Pence tested positive for the virus in May. IMs. Guilfoyle was not experiencing symptoms, the person familiar with her condition said. She and the younger Mr. Trump never met up with the president’s entourage, the person said. Out of caution, the couple plans to drive back from South Dakota to the East Coast, the person said. Still, that another person who was expected to be near Mr. Trump tested positive — and someone who most staff aides consider a member of the Trump family — is likely to renew attention around potential risks to the president. Even as outbreaks have emerged in the South and West and as states across the country report a record number of cases each day, White House officials — and Mr. Trump in particular — have minimized their focus on the virus in public appearances. In an interview on Wednesday, the president indicated that he believed the virus was “going to sort of just disappear.” Trump and entourage are very reckless. They play fast and loose with the truth and they’re careless, at a time of national emergency. It’s good that this happened. Not wishing anything bad on Guilfoyle, I’m indifferent to her, but the attendant publicity should help to focus the fact that COVID-19 is not a hoax, nor a political issue. It is a real and serious health menace. Clearly, it strikes the just and the unjust alike.
If this is new information to you, Team Trump has decided on a “strategy” for reelection. They have no platform, the economy is tanked, so “greatest economy in history” is out. “Transition to Greatness” doesn’t seem to be holding water. Every few days the polls slide a little more. So what does that leave? Culture war. Trump, in insult comic mode, is going to try and scare everybody into fearing Joe Biden and the Libs will do something worse than what he’s already done. This is the Trump card, the only one he’s got, demonize Uncle Joe and monger fear. Trump impersonator J-L Cauvin nails it. He’s got Trump’s voice down to a tee. Listen with your eyes closed, it’s almost scary. Donald Trump at Mt Rushmore preview. Have a tremendous 4th. pic.twitter.com/tRhdmfIaFy — J-L Cauvin (@JLCauvin) July 3, 2020
The culture war is made up of what used to be fringe groups in the Republican party, before the inmates took over the asylum and nominated Donald Trump. One of the most pernicious of these groups is the evangelicals, a group that calls themselves Christians, but they are not, to paraphrase Revelations 3:9. If there is any doubt in your mind, whatsoever, that there is a faction of the evangelical cult which is batshit crazy, take a look at this video by conservative radio host Sheila Zilinsky, who once said that the NFL was brainwashing viewers with gamma rays. Yeah, and gamma rays are rough on man-in-the-moon marigolds as well. This is mind numbingly stupid. Warning: Your IQ may drop several points. And once you realize that there are people who actually believe this schitt, your head may explode as well. I defy SNL or Stephen Colbert or John Oliver to parody this.