Archive

October 21st, 2016

For Democrats, Senate majority also is crucial

    If, as polls are indicating, Hillary Clinton is the next U.S. president -- the election forecaster Nate Silver says there's an 86 percent chance -- her initial years in office will depend less on the size and shape of her victory than on which party controls the Senate.

    Although the battle for control of the chamber, where Republicans currently have an advantage of 54 seats to 46, is pitched and close, some skeptics play down its significance: It takes 60 votes to pass substantive stuff in the Senate and neither party will be near that level. Moreover, Republicans likely will still control the House.

    But Senate control is crucial, especially for a Clinton presidency: The majority sets the agenda, decides which issues are taken up and which inquires or investigations are begun. Also, scores of executive branch and judicial appointments are at stake, as well as the leverage for a Democratic president dealing with a Republican-run House.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

Donald Trump, the Worst of America

    Donald Trump has virtually stopped trying to win this election by any conventional metric and is instead stacking logs of grievance on the funeral pyre with the great anticipation of setting it ablaze if current polls turn out to be predictive.

    There is something calamitous in the air that surrounds the campaign, a hostile fatalism that bespeaks a man convinced that the end is near and aiming his anger at all within reach.

    As his path to victory grows narrower, his desperation grows more pronounced.

    Last week a steady stream of women stepped forward to accuse Trump of some form of sexual assault, abuse or inappropriate behavior. Trump’s response has been marked by a stunning lack of grace and dignity, let alone contrition or empathy, a response much like the man himself.

    Instead, he is doubling down on sexism.

    On Thursday, Trump said of the People magazine reporter who accused him of forcibly kissing her: “Look at her. Look at her words. You tell me what you think. I don’t think so.”

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

Can Donald Trump turn Bill Clinton into a 'Bill Cosby'?

    Can this presidential campaign get any weirder?

    Sensing nothing left to lose, according to reports, Republican hopeful Donald Trump's campaign is going for broke with a scorched earth strategy, intended to make a "Bill Cosby" out of Bill Clinton.

    Just as Cosby went from national hero to national pariah after a parade of women charged him with decades of sexually predatory acts, Team Trump hopes to do the same to the former president.

    Yes, I know, Bill Clinton's not running. His wife is. But the Trump campaign aims to smear her as an enabler of sexual violence.

    "We're going to turn him into Bill Cosby," Trump campaign CEO Steve Bannon told Trump staffers, according to a report by Bloomberg's Josh Green -- who quotes two unnamed Trump advisers who were present. "He's a violent sexual predator who physically abuses women who he assaults. And she takes the lead on the intimidation of the victims."

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

October 20th

Trump courts the fury of women voters

    Donald Trump already had political difficulties with women voters before his now-infamous banter about sexual assault went viral on the Internet. Now, as more women have stepped forward with specific allegations against him, he's encountered a wave of female revulsion that he may be unable to survive.

    Hillary Clinton promptly and predictably used the new revelations of her opponent's unsolicited groping and kissing to rally her millions of sisters to make her the first woman president. And she gained an impassioned alliance with first lady Michelle Obama.

    Obama's electrifying speech Thursday in New Hampshire called on women regardless of party to defend themselves against the behavior and the attitudes Trump alluded to in his marginalizing remarks caught on video.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

An unshackled Trump; an unmoored campaign, lurching to the finish line

    Donald Trump is not really running a campaign for president anymore. Instead, he is involved in an extended revenge plot or is simply following the politics of grievance to its natural, unseemly end.

    See, campaigns have a message. They have strategy and tactics. They show restraint and coordination.

    Trump, in the 10 days since the release of a hot-mic tape of him making lewd and sexually suggestive comments about women, has done none of those things. Literally none.

    The Washington Post's Jose Del Real counted more than 20 different messages from Trump during a five-minute span of a speech the Republican presidential nominee delivered in North Carolina last week. That was the same speech in which Trump took apart his teleprompters onstage -- one was malfunctioning -- and insisted that he would not pay the company that provided them. (This all happened on Earth in the year 2016.)

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

The three times Donald Trump demonstrated he was unfit for the presidency in last night's debate

    Wednesday night's third presidential debate was the most substantive of the three (an admittedly super-low bar). Chris Wallace did an excellent job of moderating and made the wise tactical decision to open with policy questions before turning to both candidates' scandals for a brief spell, and then pivoting back to policy. Donald Trump seemed to have prepped more for this debate than either of the first two, and occasionally got in some sharp attack lines on Hillary Clinton's record.

    And yet, nothing in the above paragraph matters, because on at least three separate occasions, Trump said something that made it pretty clear he is radically unfit to be the president of the United States. Let's just list them here for posterity:

 

    1) Refusing to say he would accept the election results if he lost.

    If you're Donald Trump, or a Republican politician who has endorsed Donald Trump, it was not good that Thursday morning's front page of major newspapers bannered this response.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

The Authentic Power of Michelle Obama

    Isn’t it delicious that after trafficking in racism, promoting sexism and using a lie about Barack Obama’s birthplace as a pivot into political relevance, Donald Trump could receive his final death blow from a black woman: the president’s wife?

    And isn’t it interesting that after so many years of keeping a studied distance from the ugliness of the political arena, the first lady is throwing herself with such passion into this grotesque campaign?

    That says everything about the singular threat that Trump poses, and she’s emerging as the fiercest counter to it: Michelle Obama, octopus slayer. She’s effective because she has never gone looking for a fight — we know that about her. She acts when she has something to defend, and as she made clear in a stirring, searing speech late last week, that’s more than her husband’s legacy, which a Trump victory would decimate. It’s her dignity as a woman. It’s the dignity of all women.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

Michelle Schools Donald Trump

    Anita Hill lost her fight.

    The creepy guy who acted pervy toward her won.

    The issue of sexual harassment burst onto the national scene 25 years ago, exploding in the male dominion of Congress, in the shadow of that macho symbol, the Washington Monument.

    Such vulgarities and sexually explicit language had never been heard before in the political arena. It was like a jackhammer drilling down into the most sensitive parts of the American psyche.

    That traumatic week in 1991 was considered an important tutorial in sexual harassment. Except that, in the end, droit du seigneur was ratified. Clarence Thomas got rewarded by the cowed Senate Judiciary Committee and ended up with a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.

    No women voted against Thomas because none were on the committee. Just middle-aged white men, many of whom left the chamber believing that there had been some sort of consensual relationship between Hill and Thomas.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

If Hillary Clinton Groped Men

    Is there a double standard for women in politics?

    Imagine if it were Hillary Clinton who had had five children by three husbands, who had said it was fine to refer to her daughter as a “piece of ass,” who participated in a radio conversation about oral sex in a hot tub, who rated men based on their body parts, who showed up in Playboy soft porn videos.

    Imagine if 15 men had accused Clinton of assaulting or violating them, with more stepping forward each day.

    Imagine if Clinton had held a Mr. Teen USA pageant and then marched unannounced into the changing area to ogle the young bodies as some were naked and, after doing the same thing at a Mr. USA pageant, marveled on a radio show at what she was allowed to get away with.

    Imagine if in a primary election debate Clinton had boasted that there’s “no problem” with the size of her vagina.

    Imagine if Clinton had less experience in government or the military than any person who has ever become president?

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!

Clinton and Trump face off in the ring

    Welcome to the University of Nevada at Las Vegas and the third "Unseemly Clash of the Candidates" brought to you by the Commission on Presidential Debates. This final contest comes on the heels of two equally ugly and disgusting performances, on Sept. 26 at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, and on Sunday at Washington University in St. Louis.

    Tonight, the two contenders come together for the final time, something many Americans will undoubtedly greet with gratitude.

    Now let's introduce the candidates.

    In the blue corner is the Democratic nominee from Chappaqua, N.Y., by way of Illinois, Arkansas and Washington, District of Columbia, Hillary "I'll Blind Them With My Footwork" Clinton.

    In the red corner is the Republican nominee from Queens, and wherever else he elects to plant his flag, Donald "The Tongue and Genital Groper" Trump.

    The referee for tonight's event is Chris Wallace of Fox News. Have mercy on his soul.

Full text and e-editions are available to premium subscribers only. To subscribe to the digital edition, please visit subscription page. If you are already a subscriber, please login to the site.

We'd be happy to set up login information for a free week of the Liberal Opinion Week website for you. Please email liberal@iowaconnect.com with your request. Thanks for your interest in the Liberal!