After World War II, 3 in 4 Americans declared themselves to be members of a church, a synagogue, or a mosque. It was the...
What is happening in the last days of this election is wonderful to see. The Lincoln Project has released a particularly stirring ad that stacks up with the best political advertising ever done. The voice here is clear and all the notes are hit. Woven into the patriotic symphony comes the truth of what Donald […]
Rick Wilson and the rest of the Lincoln Project have been saying for some time now that not only is Donald Trump toast, but that his stench is on the elected officials who “bent the knee” and who abandoned the principles of the GOP, held for generations, to join the cult of personality that Trumpism is. Trump is trying to save his own bacon now, and the GOP down ballot, but Wilson sees it all as an exercise in futility, starting with Trump’s attempted “reset” this last week in resuming coronavirus briefings as a solo act, without any experts to offer those pesky, inconvenient scientific opinions. The only trouble is, Trump on his own, is Trump alone with his worst enemy, himself. Daily Beast: That unbelievable train wreck of a Chris Wallace interview wasn’t what the White House had in mind, and Trump’s pissy performance on Sunday rapidly moved from painful to viral. Instead of a triumph, it ended with the world mocking Trump’s inability to understand just how buffoonish he appeared, even on the ostensibly friendly airwaves of Fox News. Sure, by now Chris Wallace is probably on his way to Gitmo, but not before giving Trump enough space and enough resistance to expose his embarrassing degree of disconnection from reality and whingy dickishness. […] The obvious power shifts inside the White House and Trump campaign in the past few days are now playing out in his public appearances. He clearly, finally had it beaten into his notoriously thick skull that his juvenile objections to masks were causing enormous political blowback. That’s why on Tuesday he started the long retcon of his position on masks. Mark my words: The same Trump fanatics who spat on masks as a sign of capitulation to libtard cuck shill Soros antifa mind control last week will bob their slack jaws up and down when Trumps says something to the effect of “I invented the mask. No one had ever heard about masks before me, and when I invented masks, everyone said, ‘Sir. Sir. These masks are a miracle and you’ve saved us all, sir.’” Now the Tuesday presser was notable for one thing and that was Trump’s well wishing to accused rape ring madam, Ghislaine Maxwell. And as you saw, the Lincoln Project was on top of not only the Chris Wallace interview, from which they made their hilarious attack ad, “Trumpfeld” (whoever would have thought Chris Wallace was the perfect sit com straight guy?) to their blistering two parter, “Maxwell” and “Maxwell2.” But the problem is, that while Trump gets up before the public every day, in either interviews or now White House pressers, to repair damage, he only does more. Let’s be honest. The White House and campaign staff put him out there because they needed something—anything—to try to reset weeks and weeks of absolutely catastrophic campaign blunders, tone-deafness, managerial idiocy, and oppositional defiant disorder no-mask-for-me behavior. The campaign and professional staff are both desperate for any kind of reset not only to save their jobs in November but also to save their sanity. We all know he’s been bouncing off the damn walls since before his Tulsa disaster. One sobering statistic that Trump cannot deal with at all, is his tanking approval rating within the Republican party. He keeps tweeting “96% approval rating among Republicans. Thank you!” […]
Rick Wilson Riffs On Trump, the ‘Bullshit Artist’ ‘Billionaire’ and Why He Flipped After SCOTUS Ruling
There’s a joke that the three most important things in real estate are location, location and location. In like fashion, the three qualities that define Donald Trump are bullshit, bullshit and more bullshit. You probably read Trump’s Twitter tempest Thursday, when the SCOTUS ruling came down 7-2, that Trump’s financial records could be released to the Manhattan D.A. The reason Trump came unglued is not just the legal ramifications of his finances being known, but something far far greater. He can’t handle losing the image of the big shot billionaire. That is what’s killing him. He figures he can somehow buy his way out of doing time, but the tarnishment of his brand is a different kettle of fish altogether. Daily Beast: What really bothers Trump, what unsettled him to his core, is that the decision to reveal his taxes to the New York grand jury comes at the same time his political fortunes have taken a nosedive. He knows that as early as January, he could be a former president without Bill Barr running cover for him. He knows that even if he ekes out an unlikely victory in November, Congress now has a pathway to launch a forensic financial colonoscopy of his business affairs. He has no ambition to truly lead, and God knows he doesn’t give a damn about any kind of policy whatsoever, but is running to save himself. Trump doesn’t want to win again. He needs to win again. Give Barr four more years, he thinks, and the Interior Minister will choke out every investigation, and end any hope of understanding the web of lies, venality, and corruption that define this presidency and the man. The preservation of his image is so high in Trump’s hierarchy of needs that nothing else rivals it. And to be honest, that bullshit image got him a long way; too far, in fact. Bear in mind, Trump only exists on TV and Twitter. He lives for the spotlight. He’s the opposite of a vampire, that combusts in sunlight. No, Trump is only alive when the lights and the camera are on. Twitter is the yard he plays in, but TV is his mansion. You take Trump off TV and he’s homeless. He’s got nowhere to go and nothing to do. He’s only alive when he’s creating a digital presence for “all those lovely people out there in the dark” as Norma Desmond put it in Sunset Boulevard. Pretending he was too rich to be bought was absolutely central to his success in 2016. But Donald Trump would chase a dollar bill on a string through a trailer park, and he’s sold this country on the cheap since his election. That’s why the coming exposure of his finances has shaken Trump. He’s thinking about the actual audits, and real financial and potentially even legal consequences, awaiting him in his post-presidential years. Trump’s obsession with his image and his brand emerges from his weird, abusive childhood. As details from his niece Mary Trump’s new book emerge, we see a man imitating his father’s fixation on the image of wealth and power. Like Fred Trump, Donald finds the tabloid ideal of himself more appealing than any reality. Trump’s comeuppance is a’comin’. That’s a verity. How long until it happens we don’t know. Don’t be sad about the SCOTUS ruling, […]
Donald Trump punches down all the time, because he’s a jerk. But punching down at the Lincoln Project Tuesday, was the stupidest move that he could have made, because it plays right into their hands and they are loving it. If you missed this particular Trumpian debacle, Tuesday, it’s all summarized for you below, where Rick Wilson chats with Lawrence O’Donnell. Basically, the Lincoln Project did an ad that Trump didn’t like, so he rage tweeted and then he called them losers some more when he was about to get on Marine One — typical Trump response, in other words. But in this case, it’s having the effect of making Trump’s enemy, the Lincoln Project, more powerful. As CNN’s Chris Cillizza put it, quoting Game of Thrones, “A lion does not concern itself with the opinions of the sheep.” Trump just can’t act like a lion, because he’s not, even though he’s in the world’s most powerful job. That is the essence of this tragi-farce. Trump is a mouse — or rather a rat — in a lion’s job. CNN: Think Trump is letting the sheep bother him? Uh, yeah. – I can just imagine the folks at the Lincoln Project high-fiving when they read Trump’s tweets. And dancing a jig when he talked about them — and their ad — before getting on Marine One. – This is their ideal scenario. They literally don’t have the money to buy this sort of publicity for their ad. Now lots of people who read Trump’s tweets or saw him blasting the Lincoln Project outside the White House on Tuesday will got to their computers and look up “Lincoln Project.” And watch the “Mourning in America” ad. – It’s a gigantic win for what is, in truth, a small group of prominent talking heads who were — and Trump is right about this — roundly crushed by him and his allies during the 2016 campaign. – Trump’s inability to ignore renegade voices within his party is a violation of the most basic of campaign rules. The more he talks about the Lincoln Project — no matter how negatively — the better for the group’s profile and ability to raise money to oppose his reelection. – Trump’s best strategy toward dissenting voices within his own party would be to ignore them and stay silent. But that’s not really a skill he possesses.
Let’s acknowledge right up front that the people we’re welcoming to our bosom today are not our friends. George Conway III is a corporate lawyer and a proud member of the Federalist Society. Reed Galen is a veteran political consultant who helped inflict George W. Bush on the Oval Office. John Weaver is another political consultant who tried to give us John McCain and John Kasich as presidents. Steve Schmidt is the political consultant who thought the best choice for vice president in 2008 was Sarah Palin. Rick Wilson, another political consultant, gave us a truly brutal campaign ad that tried to tie war hero Max Cleland to Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. In normal times, we would be pillorying them for the damage they helped inflict on our country. These are not normal times. These five are board members of The Lincoln Project, the “hive mind” of what the mainstream media has giddily dubbed the “Never Trumpers,” a loose coterie of Republicans who have taken what they say is a principled stance against the modern GOP, because it “has abdicated” the responsibility of serving the people and respecting the Constitution, “and instead pledged their loyalty to one person.” I agree completely, but damn, y’all. Sarah Palin? George W. Bush? Sarah Palin? Let’s let them explain a bit: Patriotism and the survival of our nation in the face of the crimes, corruption and corrosive nature of Donald Trump are a higher calling than mere politics. As Americans, we must stem the damage he and his followers are doing to the rule of law, the Constitution and the American character. … Congressional Republicans have embraced and copied Mr. Trump’s cruelty and defended and even adopted his corruption. Mr. Trump and his enablers have abandoned conservatism and longstanding Republican principles and replaced it with Trumpism, an empty faith led by a bogus prophet. … [Between now and November], our efforts will be dedicated to defeating President Trump and Trumpism at the ballot box and to elect those patriots who will hold the line. Yes, indeed. I agree absolutely. And in normal times, I would continue with a “But” or a “However,” and qualify this new-found resistance to Republican criminality and excess with a reminder of how they were involved and complicit with the high crimes and misdemeanors of the Bush administration and other nests of GOP wrongdoing. I’m not going to do that for today. In fact, I’m not going to do it between now and November. Because these are not normal times. The five members of the Lincoln Project wrote an op-ed published on April 15 that reads in part: This November, Americans will cast their most consequential votes since Abraham Lincoln’s reelection in 1864. We confront a constellation of crises: a public health emergency not seen in a century, an economic collapse set to rival the Great Depression, and a world where American leadership is absent and dangers rise in the vacuum. Today, the United States is beset with a president who was unprepared for the burden of the presidency and who has made plain his deficits in leadership, management, intelligence and morality. So they’ve taken a step unprecedented in modern American history. They, prominent Republican movers and shakers all, have turned their backs on their party and endorsed Joe Biden […]
Hold your friends close, and your enemies closer Traditional This almost five year long myth about the infallibility of Trump and his maniacal base is about to be put to the test. And no, I’m not talking about his impending trial before the Senate. While House Speaker Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer may be able to barter some more equitable treatment in the Senate, I still cannot envision Trump being removed from office. I’m talking about Trump’s re-election campaign next year for another four years to complete the demolition of the United States. And a new, unlikely ally that may just turn the whole thing on its head. You may or may not yet be familiar with a brand new political action group named The Lincoln Project. It was officially launched 4 days ago, and raised over $1 million in its first 24 hours of life. The project is different, since it is made up entirely of seasoned long time GOP political strategists. The pillar members are GOP strategists Steve Schmidt, Jennifer Horn, Rick Wilson, and my personal favorite, George Conway, none other than the husband of chief Trump aide Kellyanne Conway. And the group is poised to become not only Trump’s worst nightmare, but the worst nightmare for his enablers in congress, especially the Senate as well. Senior GOP strategist Rick Wilson, author of one of my favorite book titles of all time, Everything Trump Touches, Dies. is the current media point man for the group And his message is simple and straight forward. Mainly that Donald Trump is an existential threat, not just to the traditional Republican party, but to the constitution, and the fabric of the American system as well. His message is simple, Trump as president, with the help of his enablers, is posing an existential threat to our democratic form of government. His point is, hell, even if you have to vote for someone who isn’t a conservative, it’s transient. He points out that the country has had Democratic presidents, and both the country as well as the Republican party have survived. But neither may survive another four years of Trump. Nice sentiment, but that and $2.75 will get you a mocha vente latte at Starbucks. In his roll out announcement appearance on Deadline White house with Nicole Wallace, Donnie Deutsch asked Rick Wilson a rather pointed, but totally pertinent question. It went something like, No slight intended, but everybody on earth knows who and what Donald Trump is. There have been “Never Trumpers” around since early 2016. What kind of a message can you bring to the table that is somehow different from all of the other messages? Rick Wilson’s reply was one that should send a shiver down the spine of Trump and every vulnerable GOP incumbent in the Senate. Again, to paraphrase, it went something like this, Well, let me just say this. With the executive board, between the four of us, we have over 120 years of experience in Republican politics. We are some tough old bastards. And to put it politely, when it comes to advertising, we have vast experience in the kinds of messaging that the Democratic party normally tends to shy away from. BOOM! Rick Wilson just went there. How many times in the past have you watched a vicious raw boned, knee-in-the-nuts GOP political […]
This is some op/ed in the New York Times today. Rick Wilson, Steve Schmidt, John Weaver (also a Republican strategist) and George Conway co-wrote a beautifully written, albeit blistering, take down of Donald Trump. They announced the Lincoln Project, an effort to protect American institutions and to hold accountable “those who would violate their oaths to the Constitution and would put others before Americans.” Ouch. There are a lot of Republicans whose ears are burning right now, as these Republicans take other Republicans, the ones who blindly march to Donald Trump’s drummer (and that’s the majority of them, alas) to task. New York Times: But this president’s actions are possible only with the craven acquiescence of congressional Republicans. They have done no less than abdicate their Article I responsibilities. Indeed, national Republicans have done far worse than simply march along to Mr. Trump’s beat. Their defense of him is imbued with an ugliness, a meanness and a willingness to attack and slander those who have shed blood for our country, who have dedicated their lives and careers to its defense and its security, and whose job is to preserve the nation’s status as a beacon of hope. Congressional Republicans have embraced and copied Mr. Trump’s cruelty and defended and even adopted his corruption. Mr. Trump and his enablers have abandoned conservatism and longstanding Republican principles and replaced it with Trumpism, an empty faith led by a bogus prophet. In a recent survey, a majority of Republican voters reported that they consider Mr. Trump a better president than Lincoln. Mr. Trump and his fellow travelers daily undermine the proposition we as a people have a responsibility and an obligation to continually bend the arc of history toward justice. They mock our belief in America as something more meaningful than lines on a map. These gentlemen are right about one thing, replacing conservatism with Trumpism is fatal and it is madness. Good for them for standing up to it. Here’s their plan of action from now until the election. Over these next 11 months, our efforts will be dedicated to defeating President Trump and Trumpism at the ballot box and to elect those patriots who will hold the line. We do not undertake this task lightly, nor from ideological preference. We have been, and remain, broadly conservative (or classically liberal) in our politics and outlooks. Our many policy differences with national Democrats remain, but our shared fidelity to the Constitution dictates a common effort. Shared fidelity to the Constitution and protecting it from forces who seek to undermine it, here and abroad, is a worthy goal for all Americans, regardless of political party affiliation. It’s a shame that less than a handful of Republicans have to take the rest of the GOP to task to reinforce adherence to principals this basic, but evidently, that’s where we are right now. Hats off to these four for taking matters in hand and doing something about it. Good luck.
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