Tuesday was primary election day in several more states. The big news came from Georgia, where I congratulate Stacey Abrams for her historic win of the Democratic nomination for Governor. She’s Georgia’s first-ever female gubernatorial candidate from either major party, and if she wins in November, she’d be the first black woman to serve as a state governor.
But that’s still a longshot. Georgia is a pretty conservative state, and Abrams is a very liberal candidate who exemplifies the issue the national party has in trying to convince its far-left base to pick moderate candidates with a better chance of winning. Abrams believes she can win by turning out more young and minority voters, but she also thinks that she can win back white, working class Georgians who’ve abandoned the Democrats by really pitching liberal policies to them. In Georgia. We’ll see how that works out.
On the GOP side, the race is not yet settled: after a grueling primary campaign, neither Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle nor Secretary of State Brian Kemp topped 50%, so they’re expected to keep waging brutal campaigns until a runoff in July. They should both bear in mind that the most important goal is not to inflict irreparable damage on each other and do the opposition’s work for them, but that whichever Republican prevails wins in November. And by July, Ms. Abrams will already have a six-week head start.
Another upset took place in Kentucky, where high school math teacher Travis Brenda beat House Majority Leader Jonathan Shell for the GOP nomination for his Congressional seat. Shell was under fire for orchestrating a last-minute change of the pension system for teachers, who marched on the Capitol by the thousands to protest, shutting down 30 school districts. As in Oklahoma, Kentucky teachers have been demanding increases in pay and benefits. There are a number of teachers running for office nationwide this year, but most are Democrats. This shows they exercise quite a bit of power at the primary level, even in GOP races. Republicans hoping to hang onto that seat should pray that the teachers can muster the same turnout in November.
Finally, speaking of November’s election, the much-vaunted “blue wave” has turned into a mud swirl down a storm drain. Democrats once had a 14.5-point advantage in the Reuters weekly “generic preference” tracking poll. This week, for the first time in this election cycle, the GOP has pulled ahead of the Democrats by 6 points. The Real Clear Politics polling average still has the Dems ahead by 4, but that’s down from 13 points. Of course, neither side should take anything for granted: the Reuters poll still shows 15% undecided.
And that’s as it should be, because as someone who understands politics and polling well once pointed out, there has never been a race in history between “Generic Democrat” and “Generic Republican.” This expert also noted that polls taken months before the election are useless for anything other than giving the media something to jawbone about. As the 2016 Presidential race proved, even polls taken the week of the election can’t be relied on. In fact, I believe that expert didn’t just point it out once, but has pointed it in every election going back for over a decade, and the media keep flogging these useless polls anyway.
I also seem to recall that that fount of wisdom was me.
There now seems to be some doubt as to whether President Trump will hold that meeting on North Korea’s denuclearization on June 12th. Kim Jong-Un is suddenly balking at actions he’d already agreed to and seemingly looking for excuses to pull out, such as protesting joint US-South Korean military maneuvers that he knows were routine and long-scheduled.
Many of Trump’s critics are displaying an unseemly amount of joy over the potential cancellation of the summit. One would almost suspect that they'd rather see Trump denied a foreign policy win their side couldn’t accomplish than to see North Korea stop threatening the world with nukes. But if they think this rattles or embarrasses Trump, then they don’t understand him any better than they understand how adults in the real world conduct hardball negotiations – and it’s not by telling the other side right upfront that you’re desperate for a deal and will give them whatever they want to get it signed. This is why I never ask John Kerry to help me buy a used car.
If Kim is trying to scare Trump into giving him concessions by threatening to cancel peace talks simply because it’s worked with previous Administrations, then he’s barking up the wrong tree. Vice President Mike Pence says that Trump is thinking about peace, not public relations. Pence said, “It would be a great mistake for Kim Jong-Un to think he could play Donald Trump,” and while the White House hopes the summit will take place and a peaceable solution will be reached, the military option “never came off the table.” Your turn, Kim.
Frankly, I’m surprised that Kim and Trump’s critics in the media would be surprised that Trump is willing to walk away from the negotiations at the last minute if the other side tries to pull something he won’t accept. That’s one of the key elements of “The Art of the Deal.” Doesn’t anybody read books anymore?
It took just 48 hours after Starbucks announced its new “woke” policy of letting anyone come in, use the restrooms and hang out even if they don’t buy anything before the company was scrambling to clarify that, no, they are not attempting to become the world’s first chain of homeless shelters with $4 lattes and biscotti.
Both customers and employees complained about the policy potentially exposing them to dangerous lurkers and questionable hygiene, and the jokes were brutal (I tried to be gentle with mine, which might be why it’s quoted in the article.) So just to make it clear that they don’t want Starbucks to turn into a Frappuccino Flophouse, the company issued this clarification:
“When using a Starbucks space, we respectfully request that customers behave in a manner that maintains a warm and welcoming environment by: using spaces as intended, being considerate of others, communicating with respect [and] acting responsibly.”
Well, that oughta do it! What are the odds that homeless street people would act irresponsibly after being respectfully requested not to? Of course, they could always argue that this doesn’t apply to them because they aren’t actually “customers” if they don’t buy anything, are they?
I’m laying odds we’ll see at least three more “clarifications” of ever-escalating desperation before Starbucks finally realizes that “progressive” virtue-signaling and the realities of running a business mix about as well as a whipped cream and mustard macchiato and they return to the time-tested principle of "Buy something or get out."
In March, Russian President Vladimir Putin declared that Russia had developed an invincible nuclear missile that could not be intercepted and that could fly for an unlimited amount of time over an unlimited range. But according to U.S. intelligence sources, it’s still in development; and despite Russia’s claim that it has unlimited range, the furthest it’s managed to travel is 22 miles before it lost control and crashed.
You’ve heard of the Trident Missile? This sounds like the Trabant Missile.
If you had to guess which state was losing population the fastest, you’d most likely pick California. But Breitbart.com reports that you’d be wrong. There are always those eager to flock to the West Coast regardless of how loopy the government is, and that doesn’t even include the stream of illegal immigrants that Gov. Brown is waving across the Southern border.
In fact, United Van Lines reports that Illinois is now the #1 state for rentals of outbound moving vans. Chicago’s WGN-TV reports that last year, Illinois lost 33,703 citizens who moved elsewhere, and 37,508 the year before that. The Chicago Tribune notes that Chicago has seen a net loss of population for three straight years and is the only major U.S. city that’s lost citizens consistently over the last five years. The Tribune editorial board recently wrote that between the high cost of living and the sky-high taxes, it no longer makes financial sense to live in Illinois, and many people agree. Last year, the state dropped from fifth to sixth in population.
But why would anyone want to flee Illinois? It’s a great state in so many ways. It’s the “Land of Lincoln”…but unfortunately, for the last few decades, it’s been the land of Obama, Rahm Emmanuel and many other liberal Democrats who have created one of the ultimate “blue state models” by running Chicago since 1931 and holding large majorities in the state House and Senate. Republican Bruce Rauner was elected Governor in 2014, carrying every county except Cook County (Chicago), of course. But his battles to force spending reforms and stop tax hikes have had mixed results (he’s twice vetoed state budgets, but his veto of a budget with billions in higher taxes was overridden.)
Despite all the talk of crime and gangs in Chicago, the #1 reason cited by ex-residents for fleeing Illinois is the reason that Democrats insist doesn’t really exist: they were driven out of their homes by crushing taxes. Some of the expatriates told the Tribune that they could never get out of the financial hole in Illinois. At least one said he wouldn’t have minded so much if he’d seen any improvements in infrastructure and services after the tax hikes, but he didn’t and couldn’t figure out where all that tax money was going. In their new states, they pay so much less in taxes that they can live in bigger houses and still put away money in savings.
As Breitbart notes, the Illinois legislature’s reaction to this news is a proposal to raise taxes even higher. Well, naturally: there are fewer people, so they’ll need to pay more to prevent the unthinkable: the government having to spend less.
I like to imagine that one day, the entire remaining population of Illinois will consist of Barack Obama and Rahm Emmanuel, and they’ll be arguing over who has to pay the tax bill for the entire state budget. At that point, I wonder which one of them will become a Republican first.
According to NASA satellite data, since Donald Trump was elected President, even the climate has defied expectations. The average temperature of the Earth has cooled by over 1 degree F., the fastest 20-month cooling period since 1916.
No, I don’t know how Trump managed to do it. Maybe he made a deal with God. Or maybe we’ve entered a new Ice Age, but the media have been off-setting the cooling with so much hot air and overheated rhetoric that we just haven’t been able to tell.
The latest Nielsen ratings for cable TV are out, and there’s good and bad news. It’s good news for Fox News, which is the most-watched cable network for the 18th week in a row. “Hannity” marked its 8th week as the most-watched cable news show, pulling in about 2 million more viewers than “Anderson Cooper Live” on CNN. Speaking of CNN, they got the bad news: the former cable news leader came in 7th, behind HGTV and the children’s channel, Nickelodeon.
I’m guessing that someone from CNN is on the phone right now, begging Spongebob Squarepants to come on CNN and say something bad about Donald Trump.
On the bright side, CNN did come in ahead of the History Channel, marking the first time since the 2016 election that CNN has been on the right side of History.
Tweet of the Day! Jenn Jacques, the gun rights editor of TheTruthAboutGuns.com was hailed by the Instapundit blog for the best Tweet of the day, and it’s hard to argue with that. She wrote:
“I’m renaming my AR-15s ‘MS-13s’ so the Democrats will protect them.”
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