Saturday, December 09, 2017

Will The Ryan-Trump Tax Scam Determine The 2020 Election Results?


The Pew Center's new poll came out Thursday. Top line was all about Russia-- primarily how most Americans-- though not Republicans-- now believe the Trump campaign was a den of collusion. But there was more. Trump's job approval ratings has sunk to it's lowest level yet. Having ticked down 2 points since October, "[c]rrently, 32% of the public approves of the way Trump is handling his job as president, while 63% disapprove... Currently, 76% of Republicans and Republican leaners approve of Trump’s job performance, compared with 84% who did so in February. Trump’s job approval among Democrats and Democratic leaners is 7%, about the same as in February (8%). In addition, Trump’s job rating has declined among several groups that gave him relatively high ratings in February, including older adults (38% of those 50 and older approve today, compared with 47% who did so in February) and whites (41% now, 49% then), as well as white evangelical Protestants (61% now, 78% then)."
The survey finds broad partisan agreement about the importance of the tax debate in Congress: 71% of Republicans and 70% of Democrats say “proposed changes to the federal tax system” are a very important issue for the country.
The CBS News poll, also released Thursday, got into the specifics of the public's views on the GOP tax plan. Most Americans are opposed. Half a dozen graphics tell the story:

Last week, Vice's Eve Peyser was out on the road with Bernie, who is touring Midwestern states that went for Trump in 2016 and that he's needs to turn around if he's going to replace Trump in the White House in 2020. Ohio and Pennsylvania were the two states she visited with him. "Sanders's weekend tour, which had the hectic feel of the campaign trail," she wrote, "was just as much about pushing back against the Republican tax plan as it was about looking ahead, presenting voters with a platform that extended beyond, in Sanders's words, merely 'saying no to Trump.' He advocated for the policies that are familiar to anyone who followed the 2016 campaign: raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, expanding Medicare to cover everyone, raising taxes on the wealthy, expanding Social Security, switching to clean energy, ending mass incarceration (which he pointed out disproportionately affects people of color), closing the gender pay gap, and standing with immigrants. What was new, however, was Sanders's emphasis on extending compassion to working-class Trump voters. The three states on his tour all went for Trump in 2016, and it seems likely that Democrats will have to take back at least Pennsylvania, and possibly Ohio, to win in 2020. After the Akron audience booed when he mentioned Trump voters, he said, 'Let's not boo anybody. Maybe except Trump.' (He was completely OK with the crowd booing Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, however.)"
"The reason [Trump] won Ohio and many other states in this country... [is that] there are millions of people who are hurting," Sanders told the crowd, before emphasizing that Trump campaigned on bald-faced lies-- but, hey, we've all been tricked before. In my interview with him the next day, he elaborated on why it's so important to him to address Trump voters with compassion.

"It is clear that there is an element of Trump supporters who are racists, sexists, homophobes, and there’s nothing I’m going to say that’s going to appeal to them," he said. "But I think that the vast majority of Trump supporters are people who are in pain, who are struggling economically, who are worried to death that their kids are going to be in even worse shape economically than they are, and they turned to Trump because Trump said things that made sense. He said he was going to take on the establishment, and he was going to provide healthcare to everybody. You know what, it’s pretty much what I said."

The difference, of course, is that Sanders seems to have a plan to provide benefits like health insurance to large swathes of Americans. The question—which may not be answered until 2020-- is whether Trump spoke to those voters because of his vague populist promises or because of his willingness to embrace the nastiest aspects of the culture war.

Sanders, evidently, thinks that it's the former. He has obvious compassion for subsection of Trump supporters, an undeniably practical perspective to have-- while some on the left might be giddy about writing off the 62,979,879 Americans who voted for the guy, Sanders wants to win them over with his populist, anti-elitist platform.

“We are winning the fight for the future of America," he told the audience in Dayton. "Please never forget we’re the vast majority of the American people.”

...The tax bill the Senate passed stands to disproportionately benefit the wealthiest Americans, lowers the corporate tax rate from 35 to 20 percent, repeals the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate, and would likely increase the national debt by $1 trillion over ten years. (It's not clear how closely the final bill passed by Congress as a whole will be to the Senate version.) The bill was unpopular, and the vast majority of economists said that it wouldn't grow the economy the way Republicans claimed. It was rushed through the Senate so sloppily that revisions were written in the margins of the bill's text. This seemed to be evidence that no matter what the left did, no matter what the American people wanted-- only about a third of Americans are in favor of the bill, according to a recent poll-- the right, funded by Koch brothers and other billionaires, would be able to advance a radical agenda.

...[T]he crowds at the Sanders's rallies were bursting with energy. At each rally, activists from the surrounding areas spoke before Bernie. In Dayton, Portia Boulger, a Sanders delegate from Appalachia who self-identified as a "Bernie bro," bellowed, "Power to the people! No justice no peace!... We will not yield!" to uproarious applause from the audience, many of whom were supporting Bernie gear.

During his Dayton speech, Sanders warned that in the coming months, Republicans might suggest cutting Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security in order to offset the billions and billions their tax bill would add to the national deficit. “One of their ideas is to raise the eligibility age for Social Security and Medicare,” he said, prompting emphatic boos from two older people sitting a couple of rows in front of me.

"I could never understand, as the Koch brothers do, having $90, $100 billion, and feel the need to lower their taxes," Sanders said in Dayton. “There is something weird and wrong about people who need more and more, and are willing to step over the elderly and the sick [to get it].”

In Akron, the crowd of 1,100 rose to their when Sanders proclaimed, “We have to guarantee healthcare to every man, woman and child in this country.” Half of them began chanting "USA! USA! USA!" while others began a "Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!" chant.
2020 Dream Team: Sanders-Warren.

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At 5:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Considering gerrymandering, GOP voter suppression efforts like Crosscheck, and human euglena having voting rights, I wouldn't get your hopes up that this Republican crime against humanity will result in Justice being served. And, there is no competent and honest person leading the Democratic Party who can be trusted to do the right thing.

At 5:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said... Bernie, dude, WHO THE FUCK IS GOING TO STAND UP TO THE DEMOCRAPS?!?!?!? Forget the republicans. If you are unwilling to stand up to the corrupt democraps, you have no credibility to (pretend to) stand up to the republicans.

“We are winning the fight for the future of America," he told the audience in Dayton. "Please never forget we’re the vast majority of the American people.”

First, clearly, Bernie, "we" are losing the fight. We lost in 1980 and every single election since then. If "we" were winning, "we" would have had a decent candidate to vote for, wouldn't we? And in 2016, after electing shit since 1980, if we couldn't get a decent candidate... it's proof that we're losing.

And, yes, we might have an unquestioned majority, but that majority never seems to have anyone worth voting for... which explains why half of that majority does not bother to vote.

I find all of Bernie's latest exhortations ripe with irony. He could have been, or at least could have pretended to have been, finally, a decent candidate for both halves of that majority to get behind. But he turtled when the going got tough, sold out to the latest shit candidate and left the smart half of the majority with nobody... again.

Bernie's words are correct. But coming from him, they lose what little impact (after 35+ years of democrap betrayal) they might have had. Had he carried on as Independent after the DNC ratfucking he endured, his words would have legitimate impact. And maybe his words would be coming from the oval office... or, at the very least, maybe it would be hope for the "vast majority" for 2018 and beyond.

As it is, it's just words. At my age, I've heard all the words. I still have yet to see results. And the descent continues.

At 1:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The reason [Trump] won Ohio and many other states in this country... there are millions of people who are hurting,"


However, the reason he won Ohio is probably due to the fraud in counting votes there.

The reason he won the other key states is that his opponent was the worst D candidate in its history by light years.


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