Public Opinion Polls

Wisconsin Political History: Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde!

The state of Wisconsin, the cheese and dairy state, has had a distinguished history in many respects.

It was the base of the great Mr. Progressive, Governor and Senator Robert La Follette, Sr, who also was the Progressive Party nominee for President in 1924, and had the third best percentage of the vote of any third party nominee in history, with one out of every six voters backing him.

It was the state of his son, Senator Robert La Follette, Jr, and also of his second son, Governor Philip La Follette, both leading Progressives in the 1930s.

It was the state of Senator Gaylord Nelson,  Senator Herb Kohl, Senator William Proxmire, and Senator Russ Feingold, the latter now seeking to regain his Senate seat that he lost to Ron Johnson in 2010, with these two men running against each other again in 2016.  It was also the state of Governor Patrick Lucey and Gaylord Nelson, before the latter became a Senator.

It is the state of Senator Tammy Baldwin, the first lesbian US Senator.

However, it was also the state of Senator Joseph McCarthy, the infamous Red Scare leader in the 1950s.

It is also the state of the disgraceful Governor Scott Walker; Senator Ron Johnson; and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, all very willing to work against the interests of the middle class and the poor.

How a state with a progressive tradition can often “go off the rails” is hard to understand.

But the progressive-liberal tradition remains a significant part of the Wisconsin historical story!

Now it is becoming the center of attention again, after Scott Walker endorsed Ted Cruz in the Republican primary to be held next week, with Cruz leading Donald Trump in polls; and Bernie Sanders leading Hillary Clinton in polls for the Democrats.

Republican Scenario: A President Who Alienates His Own Party, If Trump Or Cruz Were To Occupy The White House!

It seems clear that the Republican Party is in the throes of dying as a major political party, as so many Republicans, both office holders and ordinary voters, cannot imagine either Donald Trump or Texas Senator Ted Cruz as their party’s nominee.

Only Ohio Governor John Kasich is left from the mainstream element of the party, but he cannot win the nomination on the first ballot, and has to hope for a contested convention, which does seem more likely as time passes.

Kasich has the best chance, in public opinion polls, to defeat either Hillary Clinton or Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, while both Trump and Cruz lose in competition against both Democrats.

And there is the issue how Republicans would work with either Trump or Cruz as President, as most Congressional Republicans are turned off by both of them.

We could, in theory, have a Republican Party, or a shell of a party, in warfare against their own President, an event which would be unique in American history!

The Young (Under 45) Challenge To “Baby Boomers” Control Over Politics! Is It For Real?

If one goes by public opinion polls and turnout at rallies, the “young”, defined as those under 45, born after 1970, are rebelling against the “establishment”, the “Baby Boomers” in this upcoming Presidential Election of 2016.

They seem to want a complete  overhaul of government, and many of them are gravitating, ironically, to the OLDEST Presidential candidate of all, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a democratic Socialist, who has been in office for 25 years in Congress, plus eight years as Mayor of Burlington!

One would think that Sanders was an “outsider”, but he has been in government positions for more years than anyone else running, including John Kasich and Hillary Clinton!

But he is seen as a dramatic change because of his attacks on Wall Street, and his non-interventionist foreign policy, including his votes against the Persian Gulf War and Iraq War.

But the question arises whether one can be sure that the young, particularly those under 29, and even more, those who are teenagers or early 20s, can be relied on to show up in the primaries and caucuses, and actually vote in November for the change they say they want.

Many observers are skeptical, and wonder if the youngest “new” voters really even understand politics, foreign policy, and major complicated issues, or are just “along for the ride”, the excitement of being involved now, but losing interest as the months go by.

We shall see just how the young among us will transform American politics, and if it leads, somehow, to the election of a democratic Socialist President, it will be historic, even more so, than the election of the first African American President!

Beginning Of Rise Of Sanity? John Kasich Rises In New Hampshire Polls, And Is Endorsed By The Boston Globe!

Could it be that Republican voters in New Hampshire are starting to show some sanity?

The latest public opinion polls show a steady rise by Ohio Governor John Kasich, easily the most experienced, most qualified, and most sane and stable of the Republican Presidential field.

Understand that this blogger is not saying he is about to vote for John Kasich in the election this fall.

But were a Republican to win the White House, he could not live with any feeling of peace with any other GOP Presidential nominee.

Kasich is the best the Republicans have to offer, and he is a mainstream conservative, with faults like all candidates, but also a sense of how to govern, with his 18 years in the House of Representatives, and being Chair of the Budget Committee for many years.  And now the Boston Globe has endorsed him.

And despite issues and objections, Kasich has been one of the few Republican governors that has not been totally outrageous and disgraceful!

Ohio is still the crucial state for Republican Presidential nominees, and Kasich would have a good chance to win his home state, and maybe, therefore, win the Presidency.

Remember that EVERY elected Republican President (all but Gerald Ford) has won Ohio!

 

Bernie Sanders, By Poll Numbers, Has A Real Chance To Defeat Hillary Clinton In Both Iowa And New Hampshire!

Hard to believe, but it looks increasingly possible that Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont COULD defeat Hillary Clinton in the Iowa Caucuses 20 days from now, and in the New Hampshire primary 28 days from today!

Latest polls show Bernie winning New Hampshire and in the margin of error in Iowa, an astounding situation.

Hillary is starting to sharpen her attacks on Bernie, and even Bernie, who has prided himself on running cordial campaigns against opponents, is starting to be more harsh and critical than he has ever been in past campaigns for the House of Representatives and US Senate!

Polls also show that in a theoretical matchup of Bernie and Donald Trump, that he would win in a landslide, while a matchup of Hillary and Trump, Hillary is only a few points ahead!

Who would think that a declared democratic Socialist would actually have more support than the former First Lady and even Donald Trump?

It is clear that the American electorate is very unhappy with the status quo, and that explains the growing support for Sanders, over one million people, and over 2.5 million individual donations, with the average contribution being about $27, and total contributions of $73 million, only a few million less than Hillary has been able to gain!

No one can say that American politics is boring, as it is ALWAYS interesting!

Right Wing Christian Zealots Back Donald Trump While Establishment Republicans Condemn Trump On Anti Muslim Stand!

The Republican Party is in a quandary as to how to deal with Fascist demagogue Donald Trump, who is still leading the polls and is gaining the backing of a plurality, if not a majority, of registered Republicans, in polls, on the issue of banning all Muslim immigration to the United States.

The fact that Trump is a clear cut racist, nativist, and Islamophobe does not perturb those Republicans being polled, and yet we have seen condemnation by all Republican candidates of Trump’s demagogic proposal, with the exception of Ted Cruz and Rick Santorum.  So we have seen Republican Congressional leaders Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, along with many other leading Republicans, even including former Vice President Dick Cheney, take a stand opposing that displayed in the polls.

What we have seen is despicable characters such as: Michele Bachmann, Ann Coulter, Franklin Graham, Alex Jones, Pam Geller, Bryan Fischer, Pat Robertson, Frank Gaffney, and David Duke endorse Trump on this issue, despite their shady image as advocates of civil liberties and civil rights long term.

So the Republican Party and the conservative movement are at a crossroads, as they are trying to evade the damage being done to their brand by Trump and his ilk, but there is no question that the Trump phenomenon, the promotion of a modern Fascism, will not come to power, despite the ignorance and narrow mindedness of a portion of the American people.

Instead, it looks as if the Republican Party is about to implode, as it desperately attempts to overcome Trump, and we can expect the possibility of a brokered convention next July, which would be the most tumultuous Republican convention since the Gerald Ford-Ronald Reagan battle in 1976, and the even more tumultuous Democratic convention of 1968!

Donald Trump And Ted Cruz: The Evil Combination And Double Threat To American Values And Decency!

Donald Trump continues to dominate public opinion polls, and behind him and rising is Texas Senator Ted Cruz.

Cruz is unique in the fact that he will NOT criticize anything Trump says about anything, and this is clearly a campaign ploy, as Cruz believes that Trump will not be the party’s nominee, and that he will be able to inherit his supporters.

It seems clear that Trump supporters, when asked, will only consider Cruz as an alternative, and Cruz is suddenly working, also, on improving his image with reporters and fellow politicians, as he has a horrible image as a nasty, egotistical, brusque individual!

One can be assured it is all a “charm offensive” by Cruz, but anyone who has followed his Senate career KNOWS that Cruz is the most dangerous, most extreme, most hateful potential GOP nominee, bar none, even more than Trump on some issues like gay rights and climate change.  Cruz’s extreme right wing Christianity, fueled by his right wing pastor dad’s hateful rants on all kinds of issues, is a warning sign of the danger he represents, were he to become the GOP Presidential nominee.

Cruz has an uncanny similarity to the infamous “witch hunter” of the 1950s Red Scare, Senator Joseph McCarthy, and his lack of ethics and decency is a shared trait.

Cruz would take us back, if given power, and a Republican Congress, to the Gilded Age, as he opposes just about everything that progressives have accomplished since the time of Republican Theodore Roosevelt.

Every indication is, however, that Cruz as the nominee of his party, would cause a massive landslide defeat, a la Barry Goldwater a half century ago in 1964!

But no sane individual would want to test a chance of the possibility of a President Trump OR a President Cruz!

 

Crazy, Out Of Control Donald Trump Or Right Wing Extremist Ted Cruz: Is This What The Republican Party Will Offer In 2016?

Billionaire Donald Trump has his biggest lead in polls yet with the latest poll showing him with 36 percent, a 20 point lead over Texas Senator Ted Cruz, with both of them being very scary and terrifying, at the thought of either being the Republican Presidential nominee!

Cruz is rapidly rising, despite his extremist right wing views, and the fact that almost no Republican Senator likes or respects him, making it clear that he would have very little support from his own colleagues, were he to be elected President.  He consorts with hate mongers and right wing extremists of all kinds, and makes no apologies for it.  He is a loose cannon, and again, reminds us so much of his look alike, Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy, of the infamous Red Scare of the 195os!

And then there is Donald Trump, who is crazy, out of control, and has attacked, insulted, and vilified just about everyone, and yet keeps public support in the polls!

What is the list of who Donald Trump has attacked, insulted, and vilified?  It includes the following:

Mexicans and Hispanics

African Americans

Muslims

Refugees

Immigrants

Women

Jews

The Disabled

Journalism in general

New York Times

Washington Post

Fellow Republican candidates for the Presidency—Lindsey Graham, Rick Perry, Scott Walker,George Pataki, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Carly Fiorina, Jeb Bush, John Kasich

Senator John McCain and former Governor Mitt Romney, past Presidential candidates

Former President George W. Bush

Bernie Sanders

Hillary Clinton

And the list goes on and on and on, and yet Trump has large audiences hanging on every word and insult, as if the nation has gone totally insane, at least based on his audiences and poll ratings!

Is America about to nominate a “Reality Star” of tremendous egotism and arrogance and narcissism, or a Senator who is disliked by everyone and is much further to the extreme Right than any candidate in the race?  And could either Trump or Cruz actually defeat Hillary Clinton eleven months from now?

If so, America is doomed for the long term future in domestic and foreign policy!

Paris Terror Attack Makes Clear Growing Threat To President And Presidential Candidates!

My new book on Presidential assassinations and threats has pointed out the constant and growing danger of assassination threats to our Presidents, including Barack Obama, and my recent op-ed in THE HILL on October 22 drew attention to the growing threat to Presidential candidates, with Donald Trump and Dr. Benjamin Carson now, after much delay, receiving Secret Service protection.  Hillary Clinton, as former First Lady, automatically receives such protection.

As I have pointed out, all Presidential candidates deserve at least some protection, with those doing better in attracting crowds and gaining in public opinion polls having more protection, which would now include Bernie Sanders, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, and Jeb Bush at the least.

The idea that the French President, Francois Hollande, was in danger at the soccer stadium at the time of the Paris terror attack last night, and had to be whisked out is alarming, and all Western European leaders, as well as those from Canada, Australia and the US are going to need  heightened protection in this age of terrorism gone overseas from the Middle East to the rest of the civilized world.

The western world is faced with a crisis that Pope Francis has called World War III, but without organized governments engaged in the terrorism, presenting a massive challenge as these terrorists are willing to commit suicide to achieve their goals, unlike the former Soviet Union, which was a constant threat during the Cold War, but also had leadership that wished to win, rather than sacrifice their lives.

So as a result, it was possible over time to overcome the Soviet threat, but in this age of terrorism, it is hard to see a resolution of this crisis no matter what the strategy is that is adopted.

We live in the most crucial time since World War II, and we need statesmanship and courage to meet the challenge!

“Establishment” Republicans Panicking, Moving Toward Draft Of Mitt Romney!

“Establishment” Republicans are in full panic, as Donald Trump and Dr. Benjamin Carson remain first and second in all public opinion polls in the first caucus and primary states, and in national polls.

The “Establishment” Republicans see Jeb Bush faltering; John Kasich not “taking off”; Chris Christie faltering; and Marco Rubio doing better, but still not fully trusted by the mainstream Republicans.

But the question is whether taking a “retread”, Mitt Romney, who has run twice already, and been defeated in the past national election, will bring unity and victory.

History would tell us that such a quest by the “Establishment” Republicans will end in failure, even if, somehow, Romney agreed to run, and he does not seem eager to go through another round of a Presidential campaign, three times in a row.

Don’t hold your breath on this one!