ON THE RECORD. . .

Donald Trump haiku—

Who would the Donald
Name to #SCOTUS? The mind reels.
*weeps—can't finish tweet* -- Justice Don Willett ✔‎@JusticeWillett

“Clinton wants to abolish the Second Amendment. We’re not going to let that happen. We’re going to preserve it, we’re going to cherish it.” ... “In trying to overturn the Second Amendment, Hillary Clinton is telling everyone — and every woman living in a dangerous community — that she doesn’t have the right to defend herself. So you have a woman living in a community, a rough community, a bad community — sorry, you can’t defend yourself” ... Mrs. Clinton’s agenda was “to release the violent criminals from jail,” freeing them to roam the streets and put “innocent Americans at risk.” -- Donald Trump at the NRA convention

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“I want to go up to every single one of them and apologize, I want to go up to every single one of them and tell them how grateful I am that they are in this country and apologize on behalf of the Republican Party for Donald Trump.” — Former Sen. Bob Bennett (R-UT), as he was dying, outraged by Trump’s proposal to ban Muslim immigrants from America.

“We should call for civil disobedience here. And there’s no reason for us to follow an unconstitutional edict from the president, who is on his way out the door.”-- Rep. Steve King (R-IA) calling for civil disobedience in response to the Obama administration telling public schools that they cannot discriminate against transgender students.

“Mr. Sanders denies reality when he tells supporters he still has a plausible pathway to the Democratic presidential nomination. It is past time for Mr. Sanders to be honest with his supporters, before they take the campaign’s irresponsible ethos to greater extremes and thereby help ensure the election of Donald Trump.” -- Washington Post Editorial. 5/19/16

“Monica Lewinsky connections, Twitter celebrity status, relaxed views on police-dog brutality, and comparisons of gay sex to necrophilia—Donald Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court nominees has it all.” -- Betsy Woodruff and Asawin Suebsaeng in The Daily Beast 5/18/16

“To his supporters who are grousing about the fact that everything is rigged — it’s not rigged. You know, we’ve had elections. Hillary has more votes. And Hillary has more delegates, not even counting superdelegates. So I think we need to look at … what is at stake here. And let me tell you what’s at stake here: everything. Everything that we believe in.” -- Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) 5/20/16

“This is the worst-case scenario and the one people feared the most. Unfortunately, he’s choosing the path of burning down the house. He continues with character attacks against Hillary. He continues with calling the Democratic Party corrupt, and he not only risks damaging Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party but he's currently doing it."  -- Former Clinton aide 5/20/16

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“There is no reason for another debate at this stage of the process. We have had enough of them. The only one that would benefit from another is Trump.” -- Democratic strategist Jim Manley on Fox News' invitation to take part in a debate ahead of the California primary.

Crooked Hillary wants to get rid of all guns and yet she is surrounded by bodyguards who are fully armed. No more guns to protect Hillary! -- Donald J. Trump ✔‎@realDonaldTrump suggesting that Hillary should not receive Secret Service protection.

"Unlike Donald Trump, I will not pander to the gun lobby, and we will not be silenced and we will not be intimidated. As long as children anywhere are being killed by gun violence, we will keep fighting for our kids, because they deserve a president who stands up for them and stands with the mothers here. Their lives are valuable. ... If you want to imagine what Trump's America will look like, picture more kids at risk of violence and bigotry. Picture more anger and fear. Ask any of the mothers here tonight if they want to live in that kind of America. Enough is enough." -- Hillary Clinton

"I don't want to see the American people voting for the lesser of two evils," -- Bernie Sanders on ABC News' "This Week." 5/22/16

“The answer is not only no, but hell no.”— Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) on the possibility of Hillary Clinton picking a Democratic senator as a running mate who is from a state with a Republican governor. 5/23/16

Instead of accepting the obvious fact that Hillary will be the Democratic Party's ominee, the Sanders campaign is behaving like a 2-year-old who can’t have ice cream for breakfast. All along, Sanders and his aides have claimed that the party establishment was unfairly tipping the scales in favor of Clinton. Now the Sanders people have gone further and are deliberately stoking anger and a sense of grievance — less against Clinton than the party itself. This is reckless in the extreme, and it could put Trump in the White House. -- Eugene Robinson 5/19/16

“We’re pleased that the upcoming Democratic convention will ensure supporters of Senator Sanders are well represented in the drafting of the party’s platform,” The Democratic Party historically has been a big tent, representing a diverse coalition, and Hillary Clinton is committed to continue welcoming different perspectives and ideas.” -- Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon 5/23/16

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“Why should I be politically correct? I’m turning out to be right. I’m always right… you’ll see, you’ll see. I’m always right.”— Donald Trump. 5/23/16

“As a leader, Trump has succeeded by appealing to stereotypes and ugly hatreds that most American leaders have struggled to repress and contain. His political universe consists of deceptive experts, of scheming, of criminal Mexicans, of lying politicians and bureaucrats and of disloyal Muslims. Asked to repudiate David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan, Trump hesitated, later claiming a “bad earpiece.” Asked to repudiate the vicious anti-Semitism of some of his followers, Trump responded, “I don’t have a message to the fans.” Wouldn’t want to offend “the fans.” This is not flirting with the fringes; it is French-kissing them. Every Republican official endorsing Trump should know: This is the company he keeps. This is the company you now keep.”-- Michael Gerson in the WA Post. 5/23/16

“Very fishy.” —Donald Trump, on the 1993 death of former Clinton White House aide Vincent Foster. 5/23/16

“Trump’s demagoguery – channeling the prejudices and fears of Americans who have been losing ground – makes him the most dangerous nominee of a major political party in American history.” --Robert Reich 5/24/16

“Poor Mitt Romney. I have a store that’s worth more money than he is” before adding that he “choked like a dog, he’s a choker.” -- Donald Trump lashing out at Mitt Romney, saying he “walks like a penguin,”

“Donald Trump is man who cares about no one but himself—a small insecure money-grubber who doesn’t care who gets hurt so long as he makes a profit off of it.” — Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). 5/25/16

“She screams and drives me crazy.” — Donald Trump, saying he “can’t listen” to Hillary Clinton’s attacks against him. 5/25/16


IN THIS ISSUE

FYI

1. Cable news is destroying Donald Trump over his taxes. Here’s why he can’t release them
2. “Trump: What's the Deal?”- the Movie
3. From the Late Shows
4. Donald Trump's evolution on candidate tax returns
5. Handy tool tells you where Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump stand on the issues 
6. OK Lawmakers Seek to Impeach Obama Over Bathrooms
7. The DAILY GRILL
8. Mark Fiore Cartoon: Cheap-Labor-For-You, Inc.
9. From MEDIA MATTERS (They watch Fox News so you don't have to)
10. Late Night Jokes for Dems
11. This final-exam question got a Florida teacher suspended
12. Clinton’s The Briefing (Video): Donald Trump rooted for the real estate crash 
13. Clinton Will Likely Clinch The Democratic Nomination In New Jersey
14. GOP’s Wars Against ....
15. A law to get Trump to do what decency requires of other candidates 

OPINION

1. Ruth Marcus: Donald Trump: Stonewaller, shape-shifter, liar
2. Matt Taibbi: R.I.P., GOP: How Trump Is Killing the Republican Party
3. Robert Kagan: This is how fascism comes to America
4. Jennifer Rubin: Don’t underestimate Hillary Clinton
5. Tom Toles: The Republicans are going to nominate the refutation of all their attacks on Hillary
6. Dana Milbank: Trump bets on mass amnesia
7. Paul Waldman: Donald Trump’s corrupt bargain on guns
8. Elizabeth Word Gutting: What My Mother Sees in Hillary
9. Sally Kohn: I Felt the Bern But the Bros Are Extinguishing the Flames
10. John Avalon: Donald Trump Revives the Crazy Clinton Conspiracies 

FYI  

1. Cable news is destroying Donald Trump over his taxes. Here’s why he can’t release them.

If we were talking about anyone else, it would seem absurd to even suggest that a major party nominee for President might be willing to lose the election just to avoid admitting that he’s only worth maybe half or a third of what he’s been telling us. But we’re not talking about anyone else. We’re talking about Donald Trump. The normal rules don’t apply. And we’ve got six months to find out just how much damage he’s willing to let the media inflict on his campaign just so he can keep up the appearance that he’s worth as much as he says. 5/23/16 Read more at http://www.dailynewsbin.com/opinion/cable-news-is-destroying-trump-over-his-taxes-heres-why-he-cant-release-them/24879/

Trump-Tax-Return.jpg

2. Trump: What's the Deal?, the Movie

Trump: What’s the Deal? documents the activities of the real-estate mogul during “the decade of greed,” arguing against Trump’s image as a “self-made” billionaire while highlighting the greed, coldness, arrogance, and lack of humanity that the film says pervades his pursuit of wealth and fame. According to the documentary (and media reports), he owes everything to his father, Frank Trump, who accumulated a fortune and made political connections ahead of his son; Donald’s fortune, like his father’s, was amassed on the backs of taxpayers through the use of tax abatements, the film claims. 

Being rich seems to be the only marker of success in Trump’s universe and the main reason why he thinks he should be president. But you likely already knew that. More at http://www.dailydot.com/politics/donald-trump-whats-the-deal-documentary/

Watch the “Trump: What's the Deal?" Trailer at: http://trumpthemovie.com/

More clips at:

Trump - Lies, Lies, Lies Of A Salesman https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fijdb8iwrFY

Donald Trump, Polish Workers, and Trump Tower: You Decidehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9z2UVYOil_Q

Rent this full-length movie on YouTube for $3 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuNEo4lVeeM  or on iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/trump-whats-the-deal/id1092329352 for $4.

3. From the Late Shows

SNL Cold Open: Hillary & Bernie

https://youtu.be/HRqZhJcae3M

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Primaries and Caucuses

https://youtu.be/_S2G8jhhUHg

The Daily Show's Trevor Noah: Point-by-point rebuttal to the anti-trans hysteria

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/7jn7wu/the-daily-show-with-trevor-noah-president-obama-s-transgender-bathroom-

The Daily Show with Trevor Noah: The NRA endorses Donald Trump

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/lwz5jv/the-daily-show-with-trevor-noah-the-nra-endorses-donald-trump

Late Night with Seth Meyers: Why Trump's Fake Publicist Charade Matters: A Closer Look

https://youtu.be/YGPzCTiHghA

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: A Man Named Ralph Nader

https://youtu.be/HfUXUqxJctk

4. Donald Trump's evolution on tax returns

http://wapo.st/1VTFq32

5. Handy tool tells you where Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump stand on the issues

Voxeu.org gives you detailed information about Hillary Clinton’s and Donald Trump’s platforms, pulled directly from their official websites or other communication. http://uselections.voxe.org/findyourcandidate/

6. OK Lawmakers Seek to Impeach Obama Over Bathrooms

Oklahoma’s Republican-dominated legislature has filed a measure calling for President Obama’s impeachment over his administration’s recommendations on accommodating transgender students, saying he overstepped his constitutional authority.

“Lawmakers in the socially conservative state are also expected to take up a measure as early as Friday that would allow students to claim a religious right to have separate but equal bathrooms and changing facilities to segregate them from transgender students. 5/20/16 Read more at http://www.reuters.com/article/us-oklahoma-lgbt-idUSKCN0YB1Z0

7. The DAILY GRILL

"Qaddafi, in Libya, is killing thousands of people. Nobody knows how bad it is. And we’re sitting around, we have soldiers all over the Middle East, and we’re not bring them in to stop this horrible carnage. That’s what it is. Carnage. You talk about all the things that have happened in history, this could be one of the worst. Now, we should go in. We should stop this guy, which would be very easy and very quick." -- Trump 2011

VERSUS

"On Libya? I never discussed that subject. I was in favor of Libya? We would be so much better off if Qaddafi were in charge right now. … You look at Libya right now, ISIS as we speak is taking over their oil. We would have been better off if the politicians took a day off instead of going into war.". -- Trump 2016

 

"Let me also say this, in all due respect to the current chairperson: If [I am] elected president, she would not be reappointed chairwoman of the DNC." -- Bernie Sanders 5/21/16

VERSUS

"Even though Senator Sanders has endorsed my opponent, I remain, as I have been from the beginning, neutral in the presidential Democratic primary. I look forward to working together with him for Democratic victories in the fall.” -- DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz. 5/21/16

 

"Crooked Hillary said that I want guns brought into the school classroom. Wrong!" - Donald J. Trump ✔@realDonaldTrump on Saturday, May 21st

VERSUS

"I don't want to have guns in classrooms, but sometimes teachers should have guns. I am not advocating guns in classrooms ... trained teachers should have guns." -- Trump on On Sunday May 22nd.

“I will get rid of gun-free zones on schools — you have to — and on military bases. My first day, it gets signed, okay? My first day. There’s no more gun-free zones.” -- Trump at  a January 2016 rally in Vermont

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"I will get the NRA shut down for good if I become president. If we can ban handguns, we will do it." -- Clinton to The Des Moines Register according to a post spread via social media. 

VERSUS

The post is entirely fabricated. We rate this statement Pants on Fire! -- PolitiFact 3/14/16

 

“Not a big believer in global warming," “a total hoax,” “bullshit,” “pseudoscience,” -- Donald Trump.

VERSUS

Trump is applying for permission to erect a wall to prevent erosion at his seaside golf resort, Trump International Golf Links & Hotel Ireland. The permit application explicitly cites global warming and its consequences — increased erosion due to rising sea levels and extreme weather this century — as a chief justification for building the structure. -- Ben Schreckinger in Politico 05/23/16

 

Trump said at the end of the fundraiser for veterans groups in Iowa that they "just cracked $6 million," and that he donated $1 million of his own funds. -- TPM January 28, 2016

VERSUS

Trump told The Washington Post that he never said the Iowa fundraiser raised $6 million. When reminded of his comment during the event that he had raised that amount, Trump replied that he didn't have tape of it. -- TPM May 24, 2016

8. Mark Fiore Cartoon: Cheap-Labor-For-You, Inc. 

https://vimeo.com/167232757

9. From MEDIA MATTERS (They watch Fox News so you don't have to)

Fox's Varney: Missing Egyptian Airplane "May Be Good Politically For Donald Trump" Varney: "An Incident Of This Type Is Surely A Plus For Donald Trump"http://mediamatters.org/video/2016/05/19/foxs-varney-missing-egypt-airplane-may-be-good-politically-donald-trump/210493

VIDEO: The Repugnant Way The NRA Talks About Hillary Clinton

MSNBC's Joy Reid Calls Out Trump’s Claim That Oakland And Ferguson Are “Among The Most Dangerous [Places] In The World” http://mediamatters.org/video/2016/05/22/msnbcs-reid-calls-out-trump-s-claim-oakland-and-ferguson-are-among-most-dangerous-places-world/210528

On Fox, Heritage Action CEO Praises List Of Trump's Potential SCOTUS Nominees That Heritage Helped Writehttp://mediamatters.org/video/2016/05/22/fox-heritage-action-ceo-praises-list-trumps-potential-scotus-nominees-heritage-helped-write/210524

Roger Stone: Trump Paid Kathleen Willey So She Could Trash Clintonshttp://mediamatters.org/research/2016/05/23/roger-stone-trump-paid-kathleen-willey-so-she-could-trash-clintons/210541

Latest Accounts Of Trump Misogyny Allege Unlawful Behavior, But Media Don't Noticehttp://mediamatters.org/blog/2016/05/23/latest-accounts-trump-misogyny-allege-unlawful-behavior-media-dont-notice/210501

A Primer On Donald Trump's Extremist Friendshttps://www.facebook.com/Mediamatters/videos/10153644291371167/

MSNBC Panel Calls Out Trump For Pushing The "Crazy Vortex" Of Alex Jones, Matt Drudge, Conspiracy Theories.Chris Hayes: Right-Wing Conspiracy Theories "Are Exploding Through The Channel Of Trump"http://mediamatters.org/video/2016/05/24/msnbc-panel-calls-out-trump-pushing-crazy-vortex-alex-jones-matt-drudge-conspiracy-theories/210566

10. Late Night Jokes for Dems

"In a recent interview, 'Shark Tank' host Mark Cuban predicted that if Donald Trump is elected, it would be bad news for Wall Street. And in related news, Donald Trump just got endorsed by Bernie Sanders." –Jimmy Fallon

"Last night, Fox premiered its new reality dating show 'Coupled.' I watched it for 10 minutes and I thought, these two are not going to make it. Then I realized I was watching the Megyn Kelly-Donald Trump interview." –Jimmy Fallon

"Megyn Kelly interviewed Donald Trump last night. The important thing is that wounds have been healed, which is good. It was difficult to watch Donald and her fight. It's hard to watch a fight between two people with such similar hair styles." –Jimmy Kimmel

"On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders won Oregon. It's funny with Oregon. If recreational marijuana is legal in your state, you can pretty much guarantee Bernie will win it." –Jimmy Kimmel

"Democrats are concerned that Sanders' campaign could alienate enough voters to hand Donald Trump the election. Bernie said, 'Listen, I'm 74 years old. I'm surrounded by college girls screaming my name. Don't ruin this for me.'" –Jimmy Kimmel

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"So Clinton won Kentucky and Sanders won Oregon, and now this will be settled by whose supporters can be most annoying on Facebook. Good luck, everybody." –Jimmy Kimmel

"Bernie Sanders won the Oregon Democratic primary and this was a surprise. Hillary came in third — behind a bag of weed." –Seth Meyers

"Fox News host Megyn Kelly addressed rumors about Donald Trump's hair in a new interview and said, 'It's not a wig and it's not a comb-over, either.' So, what is it? It's a mystery, wrapped in a riddle, inside an enigma." –Seth Meyers

"A new poll has 87 percent of Republicans supporting Trump. The other 13 percent are currently standing on bridges looking vacantly into the distance." –Stephen Colbert

"He is slowly unifying the Republican Party. All it took was no other options." –Stephen Colbert

"Meanwhile, in Kentucky, Hillary Clinton declared victory after winning by less than 1 percent. So there's another 1 percent for Bernie to be mad at." –Stephen Colbert

"Donald Trump's ex-girlfriend says her quotes in the New York Times expose this week were twisted to sound negative, but that she didn't have a negative experience with Trump. Then she said, 'Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go drive the new Porsche I can suddenly afford.'" –Jimmy Fallon

"A New York Times exposé on Donald Trump makes the point that Donald Trump has hired many women to run his businesses and even quotes him as saying, 'A good woman is better than 10 good men.' And Hillary was like, 'Thanks for the new campaign slogan.'" –Jimmy Fallon

11. This final-exam question got a Florida teacher suspended:

If a Donald Trump becomes president of the United states, we are:

A. Screwed

B. Screwed

C. Screwed

D. Screwed behind a really YUGE wall that Mexico pays for. http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-exam-question-2016-5

12. Clinton’s The Briefing (Video): Donald Trump rooted for the real estate crash

https://youtu.be/m0xmr_HHkTc

13. Clinton Will Likely Clinch The Democratic Nomination In New Jersey

If you look at the few remaining contests on the Democratic primary calendar, the major news outlets — barring something devastating happening to the Clinton campaign in the next few weeks — are likely to declare Clinton the nominee on June 7. More specifically, New Jersey will likely push Clinton across the finish line, and she may clinch the nomination even before thepolls close in California. -- Harry Enten in FiveThirtyEight 5/24/16 Read more at http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/clinton-will-likely-clinch-the-democratic-nomination-in-new-jersey/

14. GOP’s Wars Against .....

Women (Cont.):

Oklahoma's legislature votes to make it a felony for doctors to perform abortions: Oklahoma state lawmakers passed a bill on Thursday that would make it a felony for doctors to provide abortions, unless a woman's life is in danger or she has had a miscarriage that needs to be removed. There are no exceptions for rape, incest, or the woman's health. So if you're a doctor, you risk both losing your medical license and going to jail if you provide abortions in Oklahoma. In practical terms, that means the new bill is a total ban on abortion. (Note: Oklahoma's governor vetoed this bill.) 5/19/16 http://www.vox.com/2016/4/26/11510874/oklahoma-abortion-outlaw-felony-doctors

South Carolina joins the 17 other states that have sought to ban abortions at 20 weeks: South Carolina became the 18th state to passed the first state law banning abortions at 20 weeks of gestation and beyond. The vote on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act passed the S.C. House of Representatives by a 79-29 vote. The state senate passed the bill in March by 36-9. Gov. Nikki Haley is certain to sign it into law. 5/18/16 http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/5/18/1527991/-South-Carolina-joins-the-16-other-states-with-a-ban-on-abortions-at-20-weeks

LGBTs (Cont.): House rejects amendment intended to protect LGBTs from discrimination: Republicans reject a Democratic amendment that would have barred federal contractors from getting government work if they discriminate against the LGBT community. 5/19/16 http://www.politico.com/story/2016/05/house-lgbt-amendment-discrimination-fight-223366#ixzz4994DnkqE

Workers (Cont.): Paul Ryan Commits To Fighting Rule That Extends Overtime Protection To Millions Of Workers: Hours after the White House announced a final rule that will change overtime protection so that it covers millions more Americans, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) vowed to fight it. Both the Economic Policy Institute and Goldman Sachs have estimated the rule could lead to the addition of 120,000 jobs. 5/19/16http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2016/05/19/3779735/paul-ryan-overtime/

15. A law to get Trump to do what decency requires of other candidates

Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced legislation on Wednesday that would require major presidential candidates to publicly disclose their three most recent personal income tax returns, a challenge to the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump, who has resisted releasing his filings. 5/25/16 Read more at http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/5/25/1530800/-A-law-to-get-Trump-to-do-what-decency-requires-of-other-candidates

OPINION  

1. Ruth Marcus: Donald Trump: Stonewaller, shape-shifter, liar

The past few weeks have offered Americans a chilling glimpse of three faces of Donald Trump: the stonewaller, the shape-shifter and the liar.

Trump the stonewaller has been on display in his refusal to release his tax returns. “It’s none of your business,” Trump flatly told ABC News’s George Stephanopoulos when asked about his effective tax rate.

Stephanopoulos: “Yes or no, do you believe voters have a right to see your tax returns before they make a final decision?”

Trump: “I don’t think they do. But I do say this, I will really gladly give them.”

Sure, he’d be happy to — except that he isn’t. And it is our business. Voters are entitled to know this information about a candidate for president, a person who would help steer the nation’s finances. For decades, presidential candidates have routinely made this material available.

Then there is Trump the shape-shifter, a man without fixed views and whose policy proposals are mere opening gambits. What does he believe? What is a core principle, and what is up for negotiation?

“I’m allowed to change,” Trump told Stephanopoulos on the minimum wage. (He didn’t want it raised, then he did, now maybe not.) Certainly, flip-flopping is a chronic and common political condition; it can be evidence of open-mindedness rather than craven politicking or ideological spinelessness.

Finally, most appallingly, Trump the liar. That is a strong charge, but it appears warranted in the matter of Trump masquerading as his own spokesman (disturbing enough) and then outright denying it (way more disturbing). Read more at http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2016/05/18/trump_stonewaller_shape-shifter_liar_130592.html

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2. Matt Taibbi: R.I.P., GOP: How Trump Is Killing the Republican Party

There were now two Republican Parties. One, led by Trump, was triumphant at the ballot, rapidly accruing party converts, and headed to Cleveland for what, knowing the candidate, was sure to be the yuugest, most obscene, most joyfully tacky tribute to a single person ever seen in the television age. If the convention isn't Liberace meets Stalin meets Vince McMahon, it'll be a massive disappointment.

From there, this Republican Party would steam toward the White House, which, who knows, it might even win.

The other Republican Party was revealed in the end to be a surprisingly small collection of uptight lawyers, financiers and Beltway intellectuals who'd just seen their chosen candidate, the $100 million Jeb Bush, muster all of four delegates in the presidential race. Meanwhile, candidates whose talking points involved the beheading of this same party establishment were likely to win around 2,000.

Like French aristocrats after 1789, those Republicans may now head into something like foreign exile to plot their eventual return. But whether they will be guillotined or welcomed back is an open question. 5/18/16 Read more at http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/r-i-p-gop-how-trump-is-killing-the-republican-party-20160518#ixzz4985cTrDq

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3. Robert Kagan: This is how fascism comes to America

The Republican Party’s attempt to treat Donald Trump as a normal political candidate would be laughable were it not so perilous to the republic. If only he would mouth the party’s “conservative” principles, all would be well.

But of course the entire Trump phenomenon has nothing to do with policy or ideology. It has nothing to do with the Republican Party, either, except in its historic role as incubator of this singular threat to our democracy. Trump has transcended the party that produced him. His growing army of supporters no longer cares about the party. Because it did not immediately and fully embrace Trump, because a dwindling number of its political and intellectual leaders still resist him, the party is regarded with suspicion and even hostility by his followers. Their allegiance is to him and him alone.

This tough-guy, get-mad-and-get-even approach has gained him an increasingly large and enthusiastic following has probably surprised Trump as much as it has everyone else. Trump himself is simply and quite literally an egomaniac. But the phenomenon he has created and now leads has become something larger than him, and something far more dangerous.

This is how fascism comes to America, not with jackboots and salutes (although there have been salutes, and a whiff of violence) but with a television huckster, aphony billionaire, a textbook egomaniac “tapping into” popular resentments and insecurities, and with an entire national political party — out of ambition or blind party loyalty, or simply out of fear — falling into line behind him. 5/17/16 Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/this-is-how-fascism-comes-to-america/2016/05/17/c4e32c58-1c47-11e6-8c7b-6931e66333e7_story.html?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_opinions

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4. Jennifer Rubin: Don’t underestimate Hillary Clinton

The media understandably are focusing on Hillary Clinton’s limitations as a candidate. She is having trouble putting away aging socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). She is not exciting young voters, and her untrustworthiness ratings are historically high. Republicans and other critics should not delude themselves into thinking she will be easy prey in the general election.

For one thing, she will run against Donald Trump from the left. She won’t play defense from the right, as she has had to do in the primary while her party rejects the middle-of-the-road liberalism that her husband popularized as the “Third Way.” Her appearance at the Service Employees International Union convention in Detroit on Monday <http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/elections/2016/05/23/hillary-clinton-seiu/84784982/>showed how effective she can be against Trump.

Add in Trump’s considerable problems with women voters, and you see the advantage Clinton has.

In sum, while not by any stretch of the imagination a great candidate, Clinton is likely to be a better candidate in the general than in the primary election. Given her demographic advantage, which is aggravated by Trump’s racist and misogynist language, Clinton becomes formidable. Republicans taking comfort in national polls in May are kidding themselves. 5/24/16 Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2016/05/24/dont-underestimate-hillary-clinton/?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_popns

5. Tom Toles: The Republicans are going to nominate the refutation of all their attacks on Hillary

What was the GOP attack on Hillary going to be? Big liar? Too much connection to money? Shaky attachment to traditional family values?

Hmm. Great plan. Donald trumps her in all three. In response to the current video of Hillary “lying” for 13 minutes straight, anyone could assemble one of Donald lying for 24 hours straight. The other two lines of attack hardly bear examining as a basis of comparison.

It’s possible that none of this will matter, of course. People vote for reasons other than the ones they give. And it won’t even make much of difference in the campaign. The strange anti-Hillary ‘liar and untrustworthy’ meme will be flogged until the last ballot is cast. Strange, because people know what a Hillary presidency would look like with more confidence and clarity than that of virtually any candidate in memory. Stranger, because this charge will be leveled by, and within the context of, an opponent who is about as unmoored in his policy statements and positions as anyone in history.

But if you like your campaign hypocrisy played out in IMAX 3-D with Dolby Digital surround sound, settle in with your butter-like flavored popcorn and enjoy.

Remember that every election is a choice of ‘compared to what?’ And if your position is that Donald and Hillary are both the same and you can’t ascertain any difference between them, then one might fairly conclude that your powers of differentiation are rather insufficiently developed. 5/1/8/16 Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/opinions/wp/2016/05/18/the-republicans-are-going-to-nominate-the-refutation-of-all-their-attacks-on-hillary/?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_popns

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6. Dana Milbank: Trump bets on mass amnesia

Just how gullible does Donald Trump suppose the American voter is?

The billionaire showman has been the presumptive Republican presidential nominee for only a couple of weeks, yet his general election strategy is already becoming clear: hope for a mass nationwide outbreak of short-term memory loss. His top strategist, Paul Manafort, has said that the “part that he’s been playing is now evolving.” But this isn’t evolution — it’s reincarnation.

That call Trump made “for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States”? Turns out that was “just a suggestion,” he now says.

The federal minimum wage increase, which he repeatedly opposed? Now he’s “looking at” an increase, he says.

The massive tax cut he proposed during the primary, which analysts said wouldadd $10 trillion to the federal debt? Never mind! He’s hired experts to rewrite it in a way that cuts taxes less for the wealthy.

Those tax returns he promised “certainly” to release? Not going to happen, he says now.

One of his key surrogates, Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), now declares that he doesn’t expect Trump to build a border wall or deport 11 million illegal immigrants — the cornerstones of Trump’s primary campaign. The congressmantold the Buffalo News that Trump would build a “virtual wall” and that his deportation plan was “rhetorical.”

Remember his incendiary (and retracted) claim that women who have abortions should face criminal punishment? What he really was saying was “women punish themselves,” he told the New York Times Magazine.

The list goes on and on. Trump, who said that “if you’re running for president, you shouldn’t be allowed to use a teleprompter,” has used that very device in at least two recent speeches. Trump, who previously boasted that “I don’t have pollsters” because “I want to be me,” hired a pollster, Tony Fabrizio. And Trump, who campaigned against the Republican foreign policy establishment, has been hobnobbing with James Baker and Henry Kissinger. 5/20/16 Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/trump-bets-on-mass-amnesia/2016/05/20/76ba97f4-1e82-11e6-9c81-4be1c14fb8c8_story.html

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7. Paul Waldman: Donald Trump’s corrupt bargain on guns

Donald Trump speaks before the National Rifle Association’s convention today, where he will enact a charade of cultural affinity for the assembled members, one utterly laughable in its insincerity. Not being there to ask them, I can’t say whether anyone in the hall actually believes that he means what he’ll say to them.

But as long as he hits the right notes — vowing to make sure guns are brought into as many places by as many people as possible, pouring sneering contempt on city slickers and egghead liberals, painting ludicrously paranoid pictures of America as a post-apocalyptic hellscape of crime and chaos, insisting that Hillary Clinton will singlehandedly destroy every right they treasure — it’ll be good enough for them.

Gun advocates certainly get something substantive out of the deal: inaction. Fortunately for them, Trump doesn’t actually have to do much for them, since the status quo isn’t that bad as far as they’re concerned (forget about him wiping away gun-free school zones with a stroke of a pen on his first day — that exists as the result of a law passed by Congress in the 1990s, and it would take another act of Congress to repeal it). But the real appeal is cultural, and they want candidates to genuflect before that culture, no matter how baldly phony the act might be.

The NRA, which believe it or not used to be an organization devoted to promoting gun safety and good marksmanship, has succeeded over the last couple of decades in freighting guns with all kinds of cultural associations, making them one of the most powerful markers of identity in American life. They’ve encouraged people to think that gun ownership makes you self-reliant, independent, masculine, strong, capable, and patriotic — and anyone who thinks that 30,000 Americans killed by guns every year is a problem worth addressing must not be any of those things.

Those voters will be told that if they don’t get out and vote Republican, Hillary Clinton will send her jackbooted government thugs to break down their doors and take their guns, leaving them defenseless against the dusky horde of low-lifes lying in wait to kill them and rape their women. They will be told that it’s an emergency, that the gun-grabbing is set to begin the day after inauguration, that their lives and freedom and everything they hold dear hang in the balance. Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2016/05/20/donald-trumps-corrupt-bargain-on-guns/?wpmm=1&wpisrc=nl_popns

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8. Elizabeth Word Gutting: What My Mother Sees in Hillary

Political decisions and opinions are personal and emotional — maybe more so than they are ever practical. Our identities are tied up in our choice of candidate in any given election cycle. This person represents me. It’s never been a question that Mrs. Clinton would be my chosen candidate. For me, it’s not just that she’s a woman who fights for women. It’s her giant heap of experience in governing — a heap so much higher than any other candidate’s.

And yes, I also love that she is always the last woman standing. She has survived ceaseless attacks. It must get very tiring, and yet she never flags. She has been called a bitch and a witch and characterized as Lady Macbeth. She’s shrill, she shouts, she barks. She’s uninspiring, she’s unlikable and she’s not exciting the base. Sometimes I think that many people in this country are still scared to see a powerful woman. But I am more ready for her than ever.

In the years when my mom was a single mother, people commented on her lifestyle with alarming frequency. Why wasn’t she living with her parents, they wanted to know. Wasn’t she worried that if she didn’t marry again soon, her son would grow up to be gay? Her landlord came over after her husband died, hemming and hawing, saying how sorry she was, but also that she was hoping my mom might move out to be closer to family, which would probably be better for everyone.

Well. My mother persevered. She smiled politely and bit her tongue and did what she had to do to survive those rough years.

Remind you of anyone? 5/20/16 Read more at http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/22/opinion/campaign-stops/what-my-mother-sees-in-hillary.html?emc=edit_ty_20160520&nl=opinion&nlid=74243604 http://nyti.ms/23YHnKW

9. Sally Kohn: I Felt the Bern But the Bros Are Extinguishing the Flames

What’s perhaps most disconcerting to me about the events at the Democratic Convention in Nevada is that if you remove the ideological valence, it’s easy to see an anti-establishment movement rising across the U.S. that is disturbingly proto-violent. Let me be clear: I am all for populist mass social movements and even anti-elite revolutions. The sooner the better. But what I am not for is hate and violence in the service of those ends, movements that seek to lift up their marginalized base by marginalizing others.

This is the philosophy behind Trump. I’m not saying that all or even most of Sanders’ white male supporters are violent xenophobes, but they are certainly angry, and in the past and present of America it is impossible to disentangle white male anger from gender and racial bias and resentment. This is, after all, all happening at a time when white male supremacy is finally, if only slightly, on the decline. It’s not inevitable that these voters’ anger would be captured and catalyzed by Trump and his message—and even more worryingly, by the truly dangerous spirit of a larger swath of his supporters. It’s not inevitable at all. But it is possible. And incidentally, being wary of the events in Nevada and the general bullying behavior of Sanders supporters throughout the campaign doesn’t make me a bad progressive or a bad Democrat. It makes me a good human being. And to not worry about any of this would be naïve.

Violence and intimidation thoroughly contradict and undermine the spirit of the movement that Sanders is hoping to ignite. Someone should tell all of his supporters that. Read more at http://time.com/4339865/bernie-sanders-supporters-violence/

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10. John Avalon: Donald Trump Revives the Crazy Clinton Conspiracies

Hillary is about to face the same scorched-earth attacks that Clinton haters first fired a generation ago.

Hating Bill and Hillary Clinton has been a conservative cottage industry for a quarter-century. But ever since Bill’s self-inflicted sex scandals overtook dark talk about shadowy schemes in his second term, the most unhinged ideas about the Clintons faded into the fringe. Until now.

Donald Trump has grabbed hold of Clinton conspiracy theories with both of his tiny hands, shaking loose names like Vince Foster and introducing them to a new generation. There’s more where this garbage came from—festering heaps of paperbacks and VHS tapes that had been rotting in partisan landfills. 

The intensity of the Clinton animus on the right ended up spurring a backlash that helped propel Hillary Clinton to the U.S. Senate in 2000 and let Bill Clinton leave the Oval Office with a 60 percent approval rating. And so it goes.

The Clintons eventually won over some of their enemies—most notably Brock, Ruddy, and Scaife. Rush Limbaugh and Roger Ailes of course still linger and Citizens United became the plaintiffs in the infamous Supreme Court case that institutionalized big money.

But onetime defender Donald Trump careened to the other side of the spectrum, embracing Obama birther conspiracy theories and seeing an opening to demagogue his way to the 2016 nomination.

The scorched-earth strategy pioneered by partisan media against the Clintons has become the norm—and many of the attacks we’ll hear during the coming Big Ugly of an election have their roots in the first round of the Clinton culture wars. 5.24.16 Read more at http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/05/25/donald-trump-revives-the-crazy-clinton-conspiracies.html