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Mike Littwin

"The pump don't work 'cause the vandals took the handles."

Littwin: Will Cory Gardner be punked by Donald Trump? Will we all?

Littwin: Will Cory Gardner be punked by Donald Trump? Will we all?

Now that Paul Ryan has officially endorsed Donald Trump, following in the party-hack footsteps of little Marco, big Chris and so many others besides, we are left waiting to hear from our own … Cory Gardner.

Yes, this is a long shot. But what if Gardner took it upon himself to play hero ball and announce that he couldn’t support the Donald, that the stakes were too high, that America was too much at risk, that common decency wouldn’t permit it, that, well, he was one up-and-coming Republican who wouldn’t be punked?

OK, that’s not going to happen. This is the same Gardner, after all, who once needed seven tries before he could answer the relatively straightforward question of whether he’d support the eventual Republican nominee. He finally said/stuttered that he would, but I’m pretty sure he hasn’t said anything on the topic since, hoping, I’m sure, that no one would notice.

And yet, last I looked, Gardner was in South Korea with two other freshmen senators flatly assuring their hosts, with all the certainty that only powerless freshmen senators could muster, not to pay attention to anything Trump said on trade deals or defense costs. This is pretty risky stuff. I mean, Trump could call him Toothy Cory or something.

Gardner didn’t say how exactly he could promise any of this since Trump — his party’s presumptive nominee for president — has said he was ready to renegotiate all manner of trade agreements and that he thought South Korea and Japan were getting a mostly free ride on defense and could develop their own nukes (prompting North Korea to call Trump both “prescient” and “wise,” which, just guessing, would get them an A+ in diplomacy at Trump University, if there were still a Trump University).

We know these are things Gardner couldn’t support. But could he support Trump, whom Gardner once called a buffoon? So far, to no one’s surprise, he’s on the “unknown” list. At some point, he’ll have to say, of course. Either that or he’ll return to his default position and claim that there is no federal Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, Ryan picked the worst possible day to endorse Trump. It was a victory for spinelessness and a defeat for principled conservatism. As The Washington Post wrote in an editorial, it was a sad day for Republicans, for Ryan and for America. As Charles Murray – yes that Charles Murray – wrote the other day in The National Review, “In my view, Donald Trump is unfit to be president in ways that apply to no other candidate of the two major political parties throughout American history.”

So, any day would have been bad enough for Ryan, but this was the day Hillary Clinton went all Daisy-ad on the Donald, asking voters to imagine what a thin-skinned Trump would do if he had the nuclear codes instead of just a Twitter account. She might as well have been picking the petals off the flowers as the mushroom cloud — over Japan? over South Korea? — emerged in the distance. Clinton wondered why Trump buddied up to strongmen like Putin, why North Korea is cheering for him, why Trump took out full-page ads calling America “weak” and saying the world was laughing at us … in 1987 …

…when Reagan was president. Yes, the sainted Reagan.

It was the moment Democrats have been waiting for — and Republicans have been dreading — when Clinton showed some actual life in her campaign, hitting the Donald high and low, dismissing him with a Trumpian-style flourish, except that she used complete sentences: “Donald Trump’s ideas aren’t just different — they are dangerously incoherent. They’re not really ideas, just a series of bizarre rants, personal feuds and outright lies.”

Trump, being Trump, responded by saying Clinton should be put in jail (for her emails) and that he was sure his attorney general (imagine the busy times for Trump’s AG) would be looking into it, because that’s the way he rolls.

It was the same day that Trump doubled, or was it tripled, down on ethnic-bashing the federal judge presiding over the Trump University case — the first ever case, historians tell us, in which a presidential nominee is accused of running a bait-and-switch operation. Trump hit the “Mexican” judge — born and raised in Indiana — by telling The Wall Street Journal that it was an “absolute conflict” for someone of “Mexican heritage” to preside over the case because he’s bound to be a Trump hater even if Trump keeps saying that the Mexicans love him. To give him credit, though, Trump never said Indiana Mexicans would love him.

“I’m building a wall,” Trump said. “It’s an inherent conflict of interest.”

Meanwhile, in San Jose, where presumably a wall wouldn’t work, anti-Trump protesters were attacking Trump supporters in one of the uglier turns taken in this ugliest of campaigns. Pro tip, as someone tweeted, you don’t fight crypto-fascism by engaging in street violence, which just gives Trump the opportunity to change the subject.

This is what it would be like to live in Trumpland, the buffoonish right turn from Nixonland, a place where the presidential nominee mocks the disabled,  says he’ll impose a religious test at the borders, is ready to walk from NATO, says that if war between Japan and North Korea were to break out, “it would be a terrible thing, but if they do, they do.” He added, “Good luck. Enjoy yourself, folks.”

Yes, good luck to us all.

 

Photo credit: National Renewable Energy Lab, Creative Commons, Flickr

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About the Author

Mike Littwin

He has covered Dr. J, four presidential inaugurations, six national conventions and countless brain-numbing speeches in the New Hampshire and Iowa snow.
mlittwin@coloradoindependent.com | Twitter @mike_littwin

6 Comments

  1. Doug McKenna on said:

    What are the chances that in the first 100 (200, 1000, whatever) days of a Trump presidency (speaking hypothetically) the Donald will do something that constitutes an impeachable offense?

    Everyone, Dems and Repugs, is going to need to pay close attention to his Vice-President pick.

    Just sayin’.

  2. buford on said:

    Our Friends and Allies will Nuke us when the final votes get tallied…they won’t wait for inauguration day…anyway…Trump will not be President…

  3. Red Rocks Rockin on said:

    “Pro tip, as someone tweeted, you don’t fight crypto-fascism by engaging in street violence, which just gives Trump the opportunity to change the subject.”–You don’t think that calling Trump and his supporters fascists for months might have played a role in provoking these violent reactions?

  4. Don Lopez on said:

    Burying the lede: “To begin a story with details of secondary importance to the reader while postponing more essential points or facts.” – Wordnik.com

    The San Jose optics are disastrous for Democrats which explains why Mr. Littwin has chosen to bury the lede in the column’s subbasement: “Meanwhile, in San Jose, where presumably a wall wouldn’t work, anti-Trump protesters were attacking Trump supporters in one of the uglier turns taken in this ugliest of campaigns”

    If Mr. Littwin believes the harm done Democrats by these continuing and increasingly violent anti-Trump attacks is worthy of only one sentence in a column otherwise devoted almost entirely to his childish denigration—-again–of Donald Trump and Senator Gardner then either Mr. Littwin is profoundly politically tone deaf or he has gone from freaking to apoplectic.

    The actions of these “anti-Trump protesters” are being broadcast live across the nation on cable TV and, as we all know, a picture is worth a thousand words and hours upon hours of anti-Trump violence brought into American living rooms is the kind of anti-Democrat, anti-Clinton advertising that money could never buy.

    Meanwhile, Mr. Littwin appears to be applauding Mrs. Clinton for suggesting, “Donald Trump’s ideas aren’t just different — they are dangerously incoherent. They’re not really ideas, just a series of bizarre rants, personal feuds and outright lies.”

    Is it really possible Mr. Littwin failed to recognize the irony—-not to mention the laugh out loud hilarity–of Mrs. Clinton accusing Mr. Trump—-or anyone for that matter—-of telling “outright lies”? Evidently so, because he characterizes those words as part of what “Democrats have been waiting for”.

    Not everyone agrees. This from a Boston Herald editorial:

    “And yet when (Mrs. Clinton) insists “they’ll be celebrating in the Kremlin” if Trump is elected, Clinton is treading on dangerous ground. Remember the Russian “reset?” So how’s that working out, Secretary Clinton?

    And the lies and obfuscation over the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi? The descent of Syria into war and chaos, the rise of ISIS — all had their roots during the Clinton years. Clinton can run on her record, but she can’t run from it.”

    Well, maybe Mr. Littwin doesn’t read the Boston Herald.

    And how can Mr. Littwin, who in the past has gone to outlandish, almost risible extremes to link Republican rhetoric with acts of violence, ignore that Mrs. Clinton’s rhetoric may be responsible for some of the ugly violence carried out by anti-Trump mobs?

    But ignoring the obvious, like hypocrisy, is what Mr. Littwin does best.

    And dangerous rhetoric isn’t limited to Mrs. Clinton. Here’s a tweet from Emmett Rensin the Deputy First Person Editor at Vox, a left-leaning website: “Advice: If Trump comes to your town, start a riot.”

    When asked what is a legitimate limit to place on protests, Mr. Rensin replied: “Destroying property is legitimate. Shouting down is legitimate. Disruption of all events is legitimate. Murder isn’t.”

    Does Mr. Littwin embrace Mr. Rensin’s radical and extremely dangerous views?

    Well, maybe Mr. Littwin doesn’t read Vox. Just kidding!

    And calling Senator Gardner “Toothy Cory” might be funny if your target audience is fifth-graders and taking into consideration the level of Mr. Littwin’s writing that could very well be his target audience.

    But obviously Mr. Littwin and reality are no longer on speaking terms so let’s go over this one more time—-and I’ll go slowly for Mr. Littwin’s sake: Cory….Gardner……won………..Mark…..Udall….lost.

    Get over it!

    ========================================================================

    Thousands of Americans participated in that most benign of civic rituals in San Jose, California, on Thursday night: seeing a presidential candidate speak. Of course, that candidate was Donald Trump, so as these engaged citizens streamed out of the arena, they were subjected to astonishing levels of violence. An angry mob pelted eggs, tomatoes, and bottles at the spectators—as well as the police, who tried (and failed) to maintain some semblance of order. Other Trump supporters were set upon and punched. One was left with blood streaming down his face. (See representative video below.)

    The mayor of San Jose, Democrat Sam Liccardo, reacted angrily to the events. Not that he was particularly upset at the violent mob that attacked innocent Americans, of course. No, his ire was directed at Mr. Trump. “At some point Donald Trump needs to take responsibility for the irresponsible behavior of his campaign,” the mayor said. Apparently it was downright “irresponsible” of Trump to even set foot in California’s third largest city. – The Weekly Standard

    “Some Trump protesters (in San Jose)surrounded the car of a presumed Trump supporter as the vehicle was leaving the convention center’s garage. Protesters were shaking the car and smashed its taillight. Protesters also surrounded and banged on police cars.” – abcnews.com

    “Donald Trump supporters leaving the presumptive GOP nominee’s rally in San Jose on Thursday were pounced by protesters, some of whom threw punches and eggs.

    The protesters chased and taunted Trump’s supporters outside the San Jose Convention Center. They surrounded one woman and threw eggs and bottles at her.” – nbclosangeles.com

    “Another young man was chased down like prey. He ran until finding some police officers who stopped his attackers.” – sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com

    “Protesters waved Mexican flags and one could be seen burning an American flag, with another burning Trump’s “Make America Great Hat.” Some chanted “F— Donald Trump” and “Donald Trump has got to go” outside the San Jose Convention Center, where Trump held his rally.” – CNN

    “Hillary Clinton’s folks billed her San Diego speech Thursday as a big deal. And it certainly was a prime opportunity to lay out her views on foreign policy and America’s role in the world.

    But what she delivered was a 45-minute rant against Donald Trump — with nary a clue about her plans for leading America on the international stage.
    Worse, her string of dump-on-Trump quips might’ve worked better if she had substituted her name for his, starting with her attack on Trump’s “series of rants” — a perfect description of her own speech.

    Clinton called Trump “temperamentally unfit” to be commander-in-chief. But how would you describe an ex-top official who continually lies to the public and holds herself above the law? – NY Post

    On Friday, inventor of the Dean Scream and Hillary Clinton supporter Howard Dean said the Democratic ticket for president needs some youth to prevent it from being too old.

    The former Vermont governor made the comments when asked about who should be the party’s vice presidential nominee.

    “I strongly believe that we ought to have someone under 50 on the ticket. I think the baby boomers have run this country for too long,” Dean told MSNBC. “We stepped away from that with Barack Obama. We don’t normally go back a generation.”

    Hillary Clinton, who will turn 69 before November, is trying to wrap up the Democratic primary against Bernie Sanders, 74, next week. – The Weekly Standard

    “’Cause I don’t have no use
    For what you loosely call the truth” – Tina Turner

    “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” – January 17, 1942 – June 3, 2016

    Greenlight a Vet
    Folds of Honor
    Special Operations Warriors Foundation
    Veterans Day – November 11, 2016

  5. Daniel Smith on said:

    Mr. Lopez seems to have been very effectively brainwashed if he believes Syria, ISIS…and, (can you believe it?) the Benghazi myth.Now he tells us the violence so often encouraged by Trumpf has somehow become the fault of protestors at his events. Mike is as sharp in his analysis as always, and glad to see him still making a difference after his shameful treatment by the right-wing Post editorial cabal called Digital First.
    Gardner will become a Donald zombie like many of the rest of the CAG and tea purdy cults, and will witness the fruits of their labors come November.

  6. Don Lopez on said:

    Mr. Smith,

    First, thank you for reading my comment. I wish others would follow your lead.

    Secondly, I think you may be a little confused, which might explain your enjoyment of Mr. Littwin. It was a Boston Herald editorial—not me— that linked Mrs. Clinton with ISIS, Syria and Benghazi. I’m repeating it here:

    “And yet when (Mrs. Clinton) insists “they’ll be celebrating in the Kremlin” if Trump is elected, Clinton is treading on dangerous ground. Remember the Russian “reset?” So how’s that working out, Secretary Clinton?

    And the lies and obfuscation over the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Benghazi? The descent of Syria into war and chaos, the rise of ISIS — all had their roots during the Clinton years. Clinton can run on her record, but she can’t run from it.”

    I’m not quite sure what you’re trying to say here:

    “Now he tells us the violence so often encouraged by Trumpf has somehow become the fault of protestors at his events”

    But I do know this: Mr. Littwin is totally silent on Mrs. Clinton’s questionable rhetoric.

    But I do agree with you on this: “Mike is as sharp in his analysis as always”. Which is to say never. Please don’t confuse Mr. Littwin’s column with journalism.

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