Bannon Versus Limbaugh, and why it matters!

by C. Edmund Wright on January 5, 2018

Coming soon…..column under construction. This one will be worth the read.

Bannon V. Trump: Is Trump Right?

by C. Edmund Wright on January 4, 2018

As published earlier today in American Thinker:

The bubbling tensions between President Donald Trump and his former senior advisor Steve Bannon escalated into an all out street brawl on social media Wednesday, as excerpts from Bannon in the forthcoming book “Fire and Fury” circulated, and of course, the President fired back. Trump always fires back, and it’s absolutely one reason he was nominated, then elected, But a sober analysis of his tweeting and responses would reach the inescapable conclusion that he responds at times when he should not.

That I, a reluctant Trump supporter would say this, draws only derision from the universe of supporters who demand 100% fealty naturally. But hey, even Milo, one of his very early adopters and biggest – and most effective supporters over the past two years, understands this dynamic. In  explaining his shocking “daddy” reference to the President, he stated that it has to do with the fact that while Trump’s “got your back,” he can also sometimes “make you cringe and embarrass you in front of your friends.”

I agree, on all points, and contend that Trump should not punch down at Joe and Mika on Morning Joe for example, and he certainly shouldn’t give LaVar Ball the time of day. And while I’m not particularly worried about his rather transparent anatomy double entendre with Kim Jong Un about button size, and so forth, reasonable people can make a case that doing so was dangerous and/ or a bit childish.

But back to Trump and Bannon. Is Trump right here? Well, yes and no.  I submit that I’m in a perfect position to comment, since I was an associate of Bannon in our fight against the Republican establishment, and it’s relevant that our professional relationship was strained when my support for Trump did not measure up to Steve’s demands.

And it’s instructive that where Steve and I disagree, I tend to be in agreement with Trump – and where I disagree with Trump, it’s often where I do agree with Bannon.

For example, Trump was totally wrong, at least in context, when he replied that “Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates” and rubbed salt into the wound by adding that “Steve had very little to do with our historic victory.”

That’s utter nonsense, in context. Yes, technically Bannon did not join the team until the primary season was over. But in proper context, Bannon had a major impact on Trump’s primary campaign success as the Executive Chairman at Breitbart prior. It’s why he got the job for crying out loud. For Trump to dismiss Steve’s contribution now is to make Steves’ shocking hire in the summer of 2016 look ridiculous.

Consider that for years, Breitbart, not to mention Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity,  The Drudge Report and other conservative outlets had been pretty much 100% philosophical matches for Ted Cruz, not to mention big supporters of how Scott Walker turned Wisconsin upside down.

When all of those outlets went all in for Trump, and not Walker or Cruz, in the primary season, it had a major impact on the race. They were worth some 2 billion dollars worth of free positive coverage to Trump in the primary season alone. A study I conducted of Limbaugh’s transcripts showed about 500 million dollars worth of coverage on just his show.

This PR was a massive factor, and for those who want to make the “chicken and egg” argument – which is reasonable – I will remind you that all of those outlets, including Breitbart, were all in for Trump before Trump gained his irresistible momentum, and perhaps why and how he ever gained it in the first place.

This is what I had predicted in March of 2015, here and in Breitbart, that the Republican who won the “Limbaugh Breitbart Talk Radio Internet primary” would win the nomination, period. End of discussion. Trump was not in the race at the time, but he clearly ended up winning that universe over all by a wide margin, and Cruz was the second fave among those platforms, by a wide margin.

Not coincidentally, Trump and Cruz were 1-2 in actual voting as well.  And again, the salient point to this is that Bannon had a helluva lot to do with Trump’s win before he officially joined the campaign. In fact, at the time, the joke was that Bannon had changed employers, but had retained the same job: as ‘Trump’s Campaign Manager.’

Then there’s the General Election Campaign itself. There is no way to minimize the contributions that both Bannon and Kellyanne Conway made to the efforts. We’ll never know for sure what might have happened, but we do know that Trump’s polls improved mightily after those two took charge, and that in the end, the national pollsters were almost spot on accurate with the popular vote, even if they missed the Electoral College outcome.

Something improved on Team Trump after Bannon took over, and I refuse to believe it was coincidence. Steve Bannon is one of the five people on the planet most responsible for Trump’s win. Trump is numero uno of course, but Steve is on that list, along with Drudge, Hannity and of course the bumbling boring Hillary Clinton. Without the efforts of all five, the outcome is different. It was that close, and these people were all that important.

So where was Trump right? Bannon and Alabama. Forget the specifics of Roy Moore and the accusers for a second, and keep in mind that in general, Steve Bannon loathes the Republican establishment even more than he loathes the Democratic left. And he guides the content at Breitbart consistent with that emphasis.

The fact is, the despicable Mitch McConnell should’ve never stuck his nose, and his Super PAC money, into that primary in the first place on behalf of Luther Strange. Trump should not have endorsed him, and Moore should have never entered. Mo Brooks was a perfectly suitable candidate, who would almost always vote for Trump’s agenda, who could’ve beaten Strange – and any Democrat.

This Roy Moore effort was not a hill to die on, not at this time. Moore would have certainly won without the accusations, but he was controversial even before that started, responded poorly to the charges, and it was simply an unforced error to spend political capital on his behalf –  at least with respects to the opportunity costs of doing so.

Remember, there are ten Democrat Senators in Trump states facing election in 2018, and those are easier primaries to win without an establishment incumbent to deal with. Moreover, the risk of handing the gavel to Chuck Schumer is lessened, not increased, by focusing on these.

But Bannon wants to ‘burn it all down,’ meaning primarily the Republican Establishment. I prefer overwhelming the establishment with numbers by winning the easier primaries.

As for Bannon’s accusations regarding some of Trump’s family and other Trump supporters vis a vis Russia and some other issues, time will tell whether he is right or not. I have no particular insight into those issues, only predicting that  the entire Russia collusion story will end up as a nothing.

In the meantime, a Trump versus Bannon fight is not helpful to anyone who wants to keep the socialist Democrat statists in check. When the fighting is intramural in nature, we get the disaster of Alabama. When we keep our eye on the ball, we get the tax reform win. I want more wins, less Alabamas, in the coming year.

 

 

When the benevolent right wing troll (his own words) says that “black lives don’t matter to BlackLivesMatter…”  – he is being literally correct, and not merely provocative. Consider Baltimore: the city caved to pressure from BLM months ago and removed a lot of cops from certain predominantly black neighborhoods.

So, how did that work out?

Baltimore is back on pace for record murders this year, and black on black crime is the reason. Way to go BLM!!!

So Orrin Hatch is retiring, FINALLY. The man has been feeding at the public trough since 1976, and will finally step down from his post as a “public servant” after 42 years – seven full Senate terms. Hatch’s career is what is wrong with Washington. He has gotten rich as a public servant. He has led the Senate in lobbying donations for many years. His political team is now ratcheting up the pressure on some of those companies to fun the Orrin Hatch Center, which will no doubt be a museum of lies, the lies of “public service.”

Hatch has “serviced” the public the way a solider on leave “services” a prostitute. His career is Exhibit A of the “House of Cards” that is Washington.

And ole Joy Behar has stepped in it again on “The View” – proclaiming that the United States is now “one step away from stoning gays.”  C’mon Joy, seriously? I don’t think Milo feels threatened.

 

Trump, McConnell, Ryan Discover Politics is Team Sport

by C. Edmund Wright on December 25, 2017

AS PUBLISHED IN AMERICAN THINKER 12-24

Sometimes there can be an unexpected yet undeniable ‘disturbance in the force’ of our politics – where one event or image seems to quietly and quickly shift the entire axis of momentum.  We saw it in 2012, when the love fest between Chris Christie and Barack Obama on the tarmac after Super Storm Sandy, including the iconic hug photo, seemed to realign the stars in what seemed like a sure Mitt Romney victory. I could feel it happening at the time, and I suspect many of you could too. We were right.

I felt the same thing a couple days ago, as President Trump, surrounded by Republicans who he suddenly seemed to like, and who suddenly seemed to like him, celebrated the sweeping tax reform and tax cut bill victory. Just a week earlier, the Republican Party and President were smarting from an internally self inflicted wound in Alabama. That was a bottoming out. The shift was palpable. It was in the air. Did you feel it?

The Democrats did, and they immediately went into a deeper apoplexy than normal. They understood it on a certain level. More on that later.

For now, it was as if this dysfunctional GOP team, with a coach who didn’t want to coach, and two quarterbacks who were still awaiting spine donors, finally figured out what has been true for the entire history of our nation.

Politics is a team sport.

You don’t have to like that fact, or like your teammates, but it’s true nonetheless. After the big win, Coach Trump was smiling, and one QB, Speaker Paul Ryan, was giving a speech that came straight out of a Tea Party/Ayn Rand manifesto about what makes America America.  The other QB, the despicable McConnell, had done a pretty darned good job of corralling a Republican caucus suffering from the likes of John McCain and Susan Collins still being in office, and having only a tiny majority in the first place.

Credit where credit is due, even if it comes off the tongue with nausea.

The Republicans won. Trump won, but so did Ryan and McConnell. It was a team win. The And what we were witnessing is that as with team sports, wins can cover a multitude of sins.

And let’s be adults and admit that there were sins aplenty to go around. McConnell, along with Karl Rove and Haley Barbour and some others have been destroying conservatives running for office for a couple of decades. This was the toxic environment that Trump entered in June of 2015, and inherited officially in January of 2017.

The problem is, Trump ran for, and was elected, President. As nominee, and as President, you are the head coach of your party. Period. It doesn’t matter if you don’t want to be. It doesn’t matter if your hardest core supporters don’t want you to do that part of the job. And it doesn’t matter that your party has too many snakes and weasels and weaklings. You asked for the job, you got the job, and part of the job is leading the party. It just is.

Trump refused to do that important part of the job, publicly sniping at Ryan, McConnell, the Freedom Caucus, and threatening to “work with Democrats” at numerous junctures. This caused Obama Care repeal to fail. Trump, who is philosophically agnostic on health care to begin with, merely ‘led from behind’ on that issue.

It was a loss, and Trump owns it just as McConnell does. All of the above.

Yes I know, the Republican establishment has been pulling against part of their own party for twenty years. I wrote the book about it, and that book inspired Steve Bannon to recruit me for Breitbart, specifically to write harshly about the GOP-E. . So yes, I realize that McConnell might not have wanted Obama Care to be repealed, but he did vote the right way. And he did again on the tax bill that removes the Obama Care mandate. He did the right thing, rare as that might be.

And Trump showed more leadership on this issue than he did on Obama Care, and he did not take twitter shots at his own team during the process, which surely was arduous. The result was a feel good win, and one that should prove extremely beneficial for all Americans economically and for the Republicans, including Trump, politically.

And a huge collateral benefit is that they kind of got the daily double here, neutering Obama Care in the process.

Frankly, I don’t know if Trump, McConnell and Ryan can stand each other personally. And frankly, I don’t care. They all like to win, and perhaps in all the rancor of the last two years, they had forgotten just how sweet victory is – until this week. Now the stage is set to rock and roll with the rest of the agenda.

And perhaps they had also forgotten how sweet, and how important, it is to see Democrats lose. Sure, Hillary’s loss was incredibly satisfying, but that was more a victory over the Hildabeast and Team Clinton than it was anything ideological. This tax bill, with the Obama Care sweetener, was a very mainline conservative crushing of the left.

And the left knows it. They know that the more people find out about this tax reform, the more they will like it. They know the economy will roar with this.  They know the Republicans re-discovered teamwork and the sweetness of victory. This is why they have been in abject panic mode since Wednesday.

And this is analogous to where I parted company with my friend Steve Bannon. He and I agree on the problem, and it was the basis of our relationship in fact. It’s the solution phase where we split.

He wants to burn it all down, ridding the party of the establishment wing, even if it means elevating Chuck Schumer to power. I want to build the conservative caucus in the party, and over whelm the establishment with numbers.

He seems to hate Paul Ryan above all others in Washington. I realize that it was Ryan voters who carried Trump to victory in Wisconsin. Yes, Trump lost the rest of the state badly.

Bannon wants to defeat incumbent Senators in the upcoming primaries, I want to emphasize winning the 10 Democrat seats in Trump states with new conservatives, expanding the majorities and moving the party to the right.

The Democrats have to defend 24 seats this go round in the Senate. The GOP has to defend only ten. This is a golden opportunity for us to give Trump a big majority in the Senate, and to ensure his agenda moves forward. It will insure more victories.

A unified GOP, like the one we saw this week, will pick up 5-6-7 Senate seats in 2018. In 2020, Trump will win re-election, and his agenda will move forward. A divided GOP will squander this historic opportunity, and America will suffer.

I see that. Heck, even the Democrats see that. Will Trump? Will McConnell? Will Trump’s hard core base? Will Bannon? Time will tell.

 

 

 

 

 

ROVE-STUPID: BANNON-SMART

March 1, 2017

When Steven K. Bannon commissioned yours truly in early 2015 to write the Breitbart series “Rove-Stupid,”  based on the 2013 book about Rove and the establishment, I realized that there was someone who loathed the Republican establishment even more than I. Previously, I was not aware this was even possible, but Bannon is like that. He is […]

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Final 18 minutes of Super Bowl = Final 18 days of Campaign

February 6, 2017

With eighteen days to go in the Presidential campaign, thinks looked very bleak for Team Trump, not to mention the Republican majority in the Senate. With eighteen minutes to go in Super Bowl 51 regulation time, things looked even bleaker for the New England Patriots, who were 25 points behind the Atlanta Falcons. The eventual […]

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Gorsuch Nomination Validates the Reluctant Trump Voter

February 4, 2017

ALSO PUBLISHED AT AMERICAN THINKER:  The inspired nomination of Judge Neal Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is, among other things, a moment of validation for the reluctant conservative Trump voter above all. It is frankly an embarrassing rebuke to the hard-headed #NeverTrump advocate to be sure, and yet, on the other extreme, this pick has […]

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GORSUCH: Fan-damn-tastic Court pick by Trump

January 31, 2017

MORE LATER – of course….but a great pick.

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Realities about illegal immigration and jobs most Americans ignore: Top 5 LIST

January 31, 2017

NOTE: As I have time, this list will expand. Illegal immigration is a tremendous problem, and one that must be addressed. I applaud the idea of securing the border, be it a wall like Trump is talking about, or other measures. We have no sovereignty if we have no southern border. There seems to be […]

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Jeffrey Lord’s almost sexual infatuation with Trump: He goes Code Pink to defend the Donald

January 29, 2017

Perhaps no longtime conservative has fallen so far intellectually in the pursuit of promoting the infallibility of Donald Trump as Jeffrey Lord. Formerly of the Reagan Administration, and since a writer and cable news contributor, Lord has seemingly jettisoned common sense and many core principles since June of 2015 in a race to be the […]

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