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New Poll: Majority Says Trump’s Racist Attack Is ‘Un-American’

Just hours after Republicans voted almost unanimously in favor of Trump’s racist attack on four Democratic congresswomen, a new poll shows that most Americans consider Trump’s actions to be “un-American.”

On Tuesday, 187 House Republicans refused to vote for a resolution condemning Trump for telling the congresswoman to “go back” to where they came from. All of the women are of color and American citizens.

The measure passed with the support of the entire Democratic caucus. Only four Republicans voted for it, along with newly independent Rep. Justin Amash (MI).

USA Today/Ipsos poll released on Wednesday revealed that Republicans are extremely out of touch with how most Americans feel — 59 percent of the people responding to the poll said Trump’s attack was “un-American.

“Two-thirds of those surveyed, 65 percent, said that telling minority Americans to ‘go back where they came from’ was a racist statement,” USA Today reported.

The sentiment stands in stark contrast to senior Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who insisted that Trump’s racist comment was not racist.

Advisers close to Trump’s reelection campaign told the press on Tuesday that they believed the racist attacks could help to motivate bigots to turn out to vote for Republicans.

That likely explains why Republicans won’t rebuke Trump’s racism despite how far outside of American opinion the Republican position is. The party tried a similar tactic during the 2018 midterms, but the reliance on racist voters ended up with the GOP losing control of the House.

Americans overwhelmingly oppose Trump and his racism, echoing the Democratic position and putting Republicans outside the mainstream of national opinion.

 

Published with permission of The American Independent.

Trump Tweets Poll Showing Distrust In Mueller (But It’s Wrong)

A new poll released by USA Today and Suffolk University on Monday renewed the political commentariat’s fears about President Donald Trump’s ability to shape the narrative about the Mueller probe through sheer force of will.

The headline for the poll sounded dire: ‘Half of Americans say Trump is victim of a ‘witch hunt’ as trust in Mueller erodes,” USA Today said. Many observers on Twitter voiced fears that Trump’s endless, repetitive attacks on the Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation had finally sunk in.

Trump himself celebrated the result:

But others noted that the poll seems dubious — in particular, the question that led to headline-making result seems quite poorly worded.

The question was written as follows:

President Trump has called the Special Counsel’s investigation a “witch hunt” and said he’s been subject to more investigations than previous presidents because of politics. Do you agree?
The poll found that 50.3 percent of respondents said “yes,” 46.8 percent said “no,” 2.7 percent were undecided, and 0.2 percent refused to answer.

But it’s far from clear they knew really what they were responding to with such a poorly phrased query.

“This is a badly written poll question, because it is asking two different things at the same time,” said Geoff Garin, president of Hart Research Associates. “Are respondents agreeing that the investigation is a witch hunt or that Trump is subjected to more investigations than other presidents?”

And The Atlantic’s Natasha Bertrand noted another possible confusion in the question: “Among other issues, it could be read as asking whether the respondent agrees with the fact that the president has said that.”

With such an unclear poll question, there are few inferences one can reasonably draw from it.

And in contrast to USA Today’s headline and Trump’s celebration, the poll suggests little reason for Trump to think his rhetoric has been all that successful. About 54 percent of respondents said they had “a lot of” or “some” trust in Mueller and his investigation to be accurate and fair (which, incidentally, isn’t what you’d expect if 50 percent of people though it was a “witch hunt.”). Only about 43 percent of people said they had “a lot of” or “some” trust in Trump’s denial that his campaign colluded with Russian efforts to meddle in the 2016 election.

There’s still the possibility that Mueller will conclude that Trump did nothing wrong, and so the majority of the public’s trust in his probe would turn out to be a good thing for the president. But Trump himself doesn’t seem to be acting as though that’s likely to happen — he’s instead working to discredit Mueller before the investigation wraps up, even as the special counsel diligently remains silent.

As Election Day Nears, Half Of Voters Expect Violence

How long will it be before someone gets shot by a Donald Trump supporter in what the shooter may likely consider an act of patriotic civil disobedience? Or before someone uses a gun against right-wing vigilantes?

There is no shortage of evidence pointing toward some violent outburst surrounding the presidential election results. Reporters interviewing Trump supporters at rallies, national polls showing likely voters are expecting Election Day violence, consumer-trend tracking firms saying demand is rising for gun purchases, and rhetoric from the longstanding cadre of right-wing loudmouths, all suggest some type of ugly response.

“Sixteen percent of Americans plan on buying a gun as a result of the upcoming election,” said a press release Thursday from Elementum, “the real-time supply chain platform company, who polled 2,000 Americans from October 20-24 and found that among those living in the South, 19 percent will buy guns and among Gen Xers, the number is nearly 23 percent, especially among women, 24 percent.”

Wrapping oneself in the flag and taking up arms is a staple of the far-right militia-embracing fringe. But the urge has found a new home in the Trump campaign, led by a presidential candidate who says the vote will be stolen unless he wins, a manager who publishes bomb-throwing Breitbart News, and backers who get their “news” from even more extreme sources like conspiracist Alex Jones of InfoWars.

Just this week, conservative talk radio hosts like Joe Walsh, the former Illinois congressman-turned-AM shouter, were promoting this militant line. “On November 8, I’m voting for Trump. On November 9, if Trump loses, I’m grabbing my musket,” Walsh tweeted.

When CNN’s Jake Tapper tweeted back, “#WalshFreedom what exactly does that mean?” the self-styled revolutionary replied, “Protesting… Acts of civil disobedience. Doing what it takes to get our country back.”

Walsh, when pressed by other news outlets, ever so slickly declared he was referring to a firearm used in colonial times, meaning it was symbolic posturing. An ex-congressman should know better—and he is playing with fire.

But other Trump true believers do not know better.

“People are going to march on the capitols,” Jared Halbrook, 25, of Green Bay, Wisconsin, told the New York Times in a piece posted Thursday based on interviewing 50 supporters in swing states. “They’re going to do whatever needs to be done to get her out of office, because she does not belong there… [Clinton] has to go by any means necessary, it will be done.”

There is mounting evidence that the Trump-led faction of the Republican Party is preparing to take their rage into the streets. Half of likely voters expect Election Day will be violent, a USA Today/Suffolk University poll released Wednesday found.

“Hillary Clinton has built a formidable lead over Donald Trump approaching 10 percentage points,” the national newspaper reported. “But she faces a deeply divided nation that is alarmed about the prospect of Election Day violence and what may be ahead. A 51 percent majority of likely voters express at least some concern about the possibility of violence on Election Day; one in five are ‘very concerned.’”

Digging deeper, USA Today echoed what Trump supporters at rallies were saying, according to the Times.

“More than four in 10 of Trump supporters say they won’t recognize the legitimacy of Clinton as president, if she prevails, because they say she wouldn’t have won fair and square,” USA Today said. This confirms the far right is taking Trump’s repeated claims that the election will be rigged as their new political gospel, even though a majority of top state election officials—who are Republicans—have said that’s not true.

There have been almost no post-debate polls by credible pollsters (not counting instant Internet surveys on right-wing websites like the Drudge Report) showing Trump with a path to the 270 Electoral College votes to win the presidency. But facts have never mattered to the Trump campaign and his flock. He has said they need to patrol the polls on Election Day, raising the specter of right-wing vigilantes intimidating voters in non-white population centers, an image last widely seen in the pre-Civil Rights Movement south.

Clinton, in her latest speeches, has said Trump’s talk of rigged elections and his threat not to accept certified vote counts is targeting American democracy itself.

“Donald Trump is attacking everything that has set our country apart for 240 years,” she said Tuesday in Florida. “After spending his entire campaign attacking one group of Americans after another … now his final target is democracy itself.”

And in addition to democracy, the target includes all Americans who reject Trump and the far right’s machinations.

Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.

Steven Rosenfeld covers national political issues for AlterNet, including America’s retirement crisis, democracy and voting rights, and campaigns and elections. He is the author of “Count My Vote: A Citizen’s Guide to Voting” (AlterNet Books, 2008).

Photo: Protesters picket outside the event site before Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump begins a rally with supporters in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S. May 24, 2016.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

#EndorseThis: Trump Didn’t Pay Hundreds Of Employees: USA Today

USA Today released a groundbreaking report yesterday detailing hundreds of instances in which Donald Trump failed to pay contractors hired to work on his hotels and resorts. The paper counted “[a]t least 60 lawsuits, along with hundreds of liens, judgments, and other government filings” in which scores of carpenters, painters, waiters, bartenders, lawyers, and other employees and contracted companies accuse Trump of bilking them on the bill, in some cases bankrupting family businesses.

Trump’s response? The same as it’s always been: It’s their fault for not doing the job up to his standards! But then how did a “really smart person” hire so many “incompetents”?

This follows a similar pattern: Trump delegitimizes institutions — in this case, contracts, and elsewhere: the judiciary, the Republican primary, trade deals, NATO, the media — when they become inconvenient for him, and then uses his money and fame to push the victims of his behavior into the shadows.

Now, of course, he’s running for president. Will the American people elect a man who has such a steady pattern of burning his business relationships?

The entire USA Today report is worth a read. For the time-crunched and the Trump-exhausted, here’s their primer:

Photo and video: USA Today