Saturday, October 29, 2016

What goes around comes around: Hackers steal Russian emails

Zachary Taylor

In what might seem to some like poetic justice after Russia was implicated in the hack of Democratic National Committee emails, a group of Ukrainian cyber-warriors has released a trove of emails hacked from the account of a top aide to Russian president, Vladimir Putin. The hack appears to be much more serious than the penetration of the DNC because it reaches directly into Putin’s Kremlin offices.

A group calling itself “Cyber Hunta” has so far released more than a gigabyte of emails from Vladislav Surkov. According to “Foreign Policy,” Surkov has been a senior official in the Russian government since 1999 when Putin assumed the presidency after the resignation of Boris Yeltsin. Called the “gray cardinal” of the Kremlin, Surkov has served many key roles for Putin and is believed to been instrumental in Russia’s 2014 annexation of the Crimea.

“This is a serious hack," said Maks Czuperski, head of the Digital Forensic Research Lab of the Atlantic Council (DFRL) on NBC News. “We have seen so much happen to the United States, other countries at the hands of Russia. Not so much to Russia. It was only a question of time that some of the anonymous guys like Cyber Hunta would come to strike them back.”

The emails provide a “smoking gun” that confirms that Russia was actually controlling the Ukrainian separatist movement in the forgotten war that has killed 10,000 people. NBC News cites an unnamed U.S. official who said that the emails confirm what U.S. intelligence has long believed, that the Kremlin was “running the separatists at the micro-level.”

One email contains a list of candidates for a local election, some with asterisks indicating they were “checked by us” and “especially recommended.” These candidates were “elected” a few days later. Other emails contain casualty lists, expense reports and a proposal for a propaganda office in the heavily contested city of Donetsk.

Vladislav Surkov was among the Russian officials singled out by the United States and the European Union for individual sanctions for their roles in invasion and annexation of Crimea. At the time Surkov told The Independent that Obama’s action would not affect him since “The only things that interest me in the US are Tupac Shakur, Allen Ginsberg, and Jackson Pollock. I don’t need a visa to access their work. I lose nothing.”

Earlier this month, the Obama Administration said in Politico that it would deliver a “proportional” response against Russia for its alleged role in cyber-attacks against the United States. The U.S. has denied any involvement in the hack of the Surkov emails.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Putin trolls The West

Speaking yesterday at a meeting of former world leaders in Sochi, Russia, Vladimir Putin took the opportunity to ridicule the U.S. election and concerns that Russia threatens Eastern Europe. In a speech translated by The Daily Wire, the president of Russia made light of the notion that Russia was trying to influence the presidential election and called such claims “hysteria.”

“Does anybody seriously believe that Russia could somehow influence the choice that the American people are to make. Do you consider the United States to be some kind of a banana republic?” Putin mocked. “The United States is a great nation. Correct me if I’m wrong.”

Putin claimed that concerns about Russian interference in the election were the product of disinformation by the American media. “It is easier for them to try and distract the public with all this talk of Russian spies and hackers and cyber-crime and attempts to influence American politics.” He added that American voters should be more concerned about the national debt and “gun violence” than Russia.

“I wish we had such an efficient, powerful propaganda machine in Russia, but unfortunately we don’t," Putin lamented. "We don’t have the powerful media organizations such as CNN or the BBC. So far, we don’t have those capabilities.”

Over the past few months, evidence has mounted that Russia was behind cyber-attacks and the email hack of Democratic National Committee. The Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, has said that the U.S. intelligence community believes that Russia is interfering with the election. While Donald Trump has not accepted this conclusion, Mike Pence admitted on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” “I think there is more and more evidence that implicates Russia and there should be serious consequences.”

Echoing Donald Trump’s concerns about a “rigged” election and that he is a victim of the Washington “establishment,” Putin argued, “People are showing a very different kind of vote, and political parties that used to be considered marginal in the past, being dubbed either far-left or far-right, are now coming to the forefront and actually pushing aside some of the old mainstream parties.” He continued, “When this turned out to be a systemic development, they started claiming that the public just fails to understands its elites and its government, it fails to understand their rationale, and then they started claiming that most often this is a consequence of foreign propaganda; namely Russian propaganda… Average citizens no longer have any confidence in the ruling class.”

Putin did stop short of endorsing either presidential candidate, noting that neither had run a substantive campaign and that their policy differences were slight. “The political agendas have been absolutely devoid of any real meaning. Instead of discussing real issues people start mudslinging, exchanging compromising stories; discussing who pinched whom on what and who sleeps with whom, and that’s just embarrassing. If you look at the political programs of candidates, it looks like they’ve been written based on the same templates. There are hardly any differences you can notice.”

With respect to fears of Russian expansionism in Eastern Europe, Putin ridiculed “military bases close to Russia’s borders” whose purpose was to act as “a defender, a protector of civilization against barbaric hordes.”

“Russia is not going to invade anyone, that would be just laughable, ridiculous,” Putin protested. “But still, they’re trying to beat the war drum and inflate the Russian threat.”

Crimea was not available for comment.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Friday, October 28, 2016

Is Trump campaign closing up shop two weeks early?

With less than two weeks to go until Election Day, there are indications that the Trump campaign is closing up shop early. Two new reports indicate that Trump may be leaving other Republicans to hold the bag as he prepares to go back to his day job.

The Washington Post reported that Trump has stopped holding fundraisers for Trump Victory, the joint fundraising committee between the Republican Party and the Trump campaign. Steven Mnuchin, the Trump campaign’s finance chairman, said that the last formal fundraiser was held on October 19, the day of the last presidential debate, and that no more events were scheduled. In contrast, the Clinton campaign had 41 events scheduled between publication of the article on October 25 and Election Day.  

“We’ve kind of wound down,” Mnuchin said, two full weeks before the election. “But the online fundraising continues to be strong.”

The Post reported that Trump Victory raised more than $40 million through the end of September. The funds were used to pay field staffers who are working to get out the Republican vote. Lew Eisenburg, chairman of Trump Victory, said “when the opportunity presents itself, we will have ad hoc fundraisers” with Trump and vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence.

Mnuchin said that Trump’s focus would be on campaign events rather than fundraising. “We have minimized his fundraising schedule over the last month to emphasize his focus on political [events]. Unlike Hillary, who has been fundraising and not out and about, he has constantly been out and about.”

“We couldn’t be more pleased with how the fundraising has gone,” Mnuchin continued. “We have big media buys, we have a terrific ground game.”

Mnuchin is correct on media buys, if not the ground game. For the first time in the campaign, Trump is outspending Clinton on campaign ads. Bloomberg reports that for the week of October 18, Trump spent $14.4 million to Clinton’s $13.9 million. Over the course of the campaign, Clinton has outspent Trump by about three to one.

The downside to Trump’s decision to end fundraising events may be the effect on down ballot races. With the probability of a Hillary presidency looming, maintaining a Republican Congress is the key to stopping Hillary’s liberal agenda. Without Trump Victory as a source of funds, many vulnerable Republican incumbents in close races may be ousted by Democrats.

If he isn’t fundraising, what is Trump doing with his time? With the countdown to the election marked in days and Trump trailing in the swing states, Politico reports that he’s getting back to the business of building his brand. On Monday, Trump kicked off a nightly internet newscast that many feel may be a precursor to a Trump network. On Tuesday, Trump held a press event at the Trump National Doral Miami where he bragged that his property was “one of the great places on earth.” On Wednesday, he took time out from the campaign to attend a ribbon-cutting at the new Trump hotel located in the Old Post Office in Washington, D.C.

“Politics is a side hobby for Trump, kind of like fishing or model railroading. Hotels, that’s serious business, and I hear the hotel is fabulous,” Curt Anderson, a top Republican strategist, told Politico. “Which of his aides would like to take credit for scheduling this trip to D.C.? Is no one able to stand up to this guy? No one at all?”

Originally published on The Resurgent

Evan McMullin's odds are improving

Evan McMullin’s star is rising. The insurgent candidate has only been on the campaign trail for two and a half months, an unbelievably short time for a presidential campaign, but he is already poised to win a state, a feat not accomplished by the Libertarian Party in its 44-year history (although the party has received one electoral vote from a faithless elector).

McMullin received some welcome publicity earlier in October when the FiveThirtyEight political blog rated his chances of winning the White House as high as three percent. Since then, McMullin surged to the lead in one Utah poll and a statistical tie in two others.

Due to extreme interest in McMullin’s campaign, FiveThirtyEight recently revisited the few Utah polls available. The analysis found that McMullin actually has a better chance of winning Utah than the average of polls indicates.

The problem with the polls is that several pollsters treat third party candidates differently than the main party candidates. Two polls that heavily favor Trump had issues that might have hurt the outcome for McMullin. A YouGov poll that gave Trump a 17-point lead only allowed respondents to select McMullin if they first selected “someone else.” Another poll by Monmouth gave Trump a 14-point lead over McMullin and six over Clinton. This poll listed third party candidates as an initial choice, but not as a secondary choice for undecided voters.

Another poll may have given McMullin an unfair boost. A poll by Rasmussen that showed McMullin one point behind Trump listed McMullin’s political affiliation as “independent conservative” when he will actually be listed on the Utah ballot as “unaffiliated.” FiveThirtyEight noted that the description as a conservative may have helped McMullin in the deeply conservative state.

The analysts at FiveThirtyEight make predictions on two models, one using polls and the “nowcast,” an estimate of what would happen if the election were held today. Using all available polls, McMullin has an estimated 14 percent chance from the polls-only forecast and 22 percent from the nowcast. When polls that didn’t treat McMullin the same as the major party candidates were excluded, his chances rose to 23 and 38 percent respectively.

The bettors on the political betting site, Predict It, seem to agree with the FiveThirtyEight assessment. Bets that McMullin will win Utah are currently trading at 36 cents. Bets that he loses are 67 cents. This is very close to the FiveThirtyEight estimate of McMullin’s chances of success.

Winning Utah is only part of McMullin’s overall strategy to deny the presidency to Trump and Hillary though. To win the election, McMullin must throw the Electoral College into a tie by denying both Trump and Hillary 270 electoral votes. FiveThirtyEight rates that possibility at less than one percent.

The blog doesn’t provide an estimate of McMullin’s chances of going all the way to the White House. They say that what would happen if the election were forced into the House of Representatives by an Electoral College deadlock “is entirely speculative.” Nevertheless, they do say that pollsters should “treat him like a candidate who has a chance to win. Because he does.”

McMullin has even earned a spot on Predict It’s market for who will win the presidential election. A bet on McMullin can currently be placed for one cent compared to 81 cents for Hillary Clinton and 21 cents for Donald Trump. In a year in which rules seem made to be broken, a one cent bet that pays a dollar if McMullin becomes president might be a good investment.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

President Obama knew about Hillary's private server

New revelations from Wikileaks seem to prove that the White House knew about Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server. President Obama previously denied that he had any prior knowledge of Clinton’s “homebrew” server, but Wikileaks documents suggest that the president used a pseudonym to correspond directly with Clinton’s private email address and then lied about it.

Back in March 2015, as the email scandal was breaking, President Obama said, in essence, that he did not have textual relations with Hillary’s private server. Obama told CBS News that he learned of the server at “the same time everybody else learned it through news reports.”

Obama’s denial seems to have triggered a crisis in the Clinton campaign. Andrew McCarthy at National Review points out that the same day that Obama made his comments, Josh Scherwin, the Clinton campaign secretary, emailed an alert to several Clinton staffers including Jennifer Palmieri: “Jen, you probably have more on this but it looks like POTUS just said he found out HRC was using her personal email when he saw it in the news.”

McCarthy then traced the email from one of the original recipients, Nick Merrill, to Clinton attorney and aide, Cheryl Mills. Mills then emailed John Podesta, chairman of Hillary’s campaign. Mills told Podesta, “We need to clean this up — he has emails from her — they do not say”

The Mills email is damning evidence that President Obama received emails from Hillary’s private email account. It would have been impossible for the White House to not be aware that Clinton was using a private server if she had used the private email account to conduct state business with the president.

Eventually, 18 emails between Clinton and Obama were identified. On January 29, 2016 at the daily press briefing, Josh Kirby announced that the emails were “being withheld to remain confidential, to protect the President’s ability to receive unvarnished advice and counsel. And they ultimately will be released in accordance with the Presidential Records Act.” Kirby didn’t cite executive privilege, but it amounted to the same thing.

The 18 emails not only prove that Obama lied about his ignorance of Hillary’s private server, they also provide a motive for his administration to interfere with the FBI investigation of Hillary’s handling of classified information. If Hillary was guilty of mishandling classified information and had engaged in email exchanges with the president, then the president would be guilty as well.

McCarthy noted that executive privilege could not shield the president if Hillary was indicted or was the target of a grand jury investigation. “In its famous Watergate ruling, United States v. Nixon,” McCarthy wrote, “the Supreme Court held that an invocation of executive privilege to secure the confidentiality of presidential communications will not shield those communications from disclosure if they are relevant evidence in a grand-jury investigation or a criminal trial.

With President Obama linked to the private server and complicit in the cover up, Rep. Trey Gowdy’s (R-S.C.) grilling of FBI Director James Comey comes to mind. On CNBC, Gowdy said, “In your old job you would prove intent as you referenced by showing the jury evidence of a complex scheme that was designed for the very purpose of concealing the public record and you would be arguing in addition to concealment the destruction that you and i just talked about or certainly the failure to preserve.”

Now there is evidence that the president was involved in the same scheme to conceal Clinton’s purposeful mishandling of classified information. That means that President Obama is as guilty as Hillary Clinton. Not indicting Hillary was not for the benefit of the Clintons. It was to protect Barack Obama.

Originally published on The Resurgent

How Evan McMullin's strategy has already worked

This may be the year of the independent candidate. Evan McMullin seems to be taking large parts of the country by storm. Unlike many third party candidates, McMullin has both a popular message and strategy that could actually make him president. It’s a longshot, but it is a strategy that has already been proven to be workable.

The McMullin strategy is a plan in three phases. He is well on his way to completing the first phase, winning at least one electoral vote. If McMullin can win Utah, he will be the first third party candidate to win electoral votes since 1968. He will also win the possibility of becoming president, even though he will fall far short of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the Electoral College election.

The next phase of the McMullin strategy is to deny both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton 270 electoral votes. This phase depends on the Trump campaign not imploding in red states like Arizona, Texas and Georgia. Trump must also marshal his voters in the swing states to deny Hillary Clinton an outright electoral college victory. This is looking unlikely. Even Fox Business admitted yesterday that Hillary Clinton is likely to win 307 electoral votes, far more than are required to win the presidency.

Assuming that phases one and two fall into place, McMullin will have won Utah’s six electoral votes and Trump and Clinton will be deadlocked with less than 270 electoral votes each. At that point, the Constitution stipulates that the election will go to the House of Representatives, which will choose from among the top three winners of electoral votes. Each state gets one vote in the House election.

It is easy to assume that the majority Republicans would simply rubberstamp the Republican candidate, Donald Trump, but the situation isn’t that simple. The election would take place after the new Congress is seated so it is likely that there will be fewer Republicans than there are today. The fact that Donald Trump is not popular within his own party must also be considered. Finally, McMullin was a House staffer who has friends among the House Republican caucus. Some of these friends are the people who encouraged him to run in the first place.

It is unlikely that Democrats would support Donald Trump or that Republicans would break toward Hillary Clinton in a House election. It is possible that anti-Trump Republicans might forge a bipartisan majority to elect McMullin president.

If this sounds like a long shot, it is. If it sounds impossible, it isn’t. In fact, it has already happened in American history.

In the election of 1824, the Democratic-Republicans, the forerunner of today’s Democratic Party, were on a winning streak. They had won the previous six presidential elections as the Federalist party declined. James Monroe, the incumbent, was ending his second term and declined to run for a third.

Four candidates, all Democratic-Republicans, vied to succeed Monroe. Secretary of State John Quincy Adams of Massachusetts, Secretary of the Treasury William Crawford of Georgia, Speaker of the House Henry Clay of Kentucky and Gen. Andrew Jackson of Tennessee all won electoral votes. None of the candidates, however, won the majority of electoral votes required to win the election.

Andrew Jackson won the most electoral votes at 99 with John Quincy Adams running a close second at 84. Henry Clay, who finished fourth, decided to use his influence as Speaker of the House to support Adams. On February 9, 1825, the House of Representatives elected John Quincy Adams the sixth president of the United States in spite of the fact that he had received fewer electoral votes and popular votes than Andrew Jackson.

It is possible, but by no means certain, that history will repeat itself this year. The three hurdles than the McMullin campaign must clear are all long shots in and of themselves. FiveThirtyEight gives McMullin a 22 percent chance of winning Utah, but rates the chance that no one will win the Electoral College at less than one percent.

The one certainty is that Evan McMullin’s popularity hinges largely on the unpopularity of the two main candidates. If either of the two major parties had nominated a fairly honest, moderately likeable candidate that person would be winning a landslide victory. Instead we have Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

And Evan McMullin has a chance to become president.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Breitbart worked with liberal activists against Republicans

The conservative website Breitbart has been very critical of reports that a pro-Hillary group paid liberal activists to incite violence at Trump rallies. The reports, based on an undercover video by investigative filmmaker James O’Keefe, were explosive and resulted in the dismissals of at least two Democrat activists from the group Democracy Partners. Now it appears that Breitbart may have used similar tactics to disrupt the campaign events of Trump opponents in the Republican primary.

A report from Politico cites an unnamed source who said that Aaron Black, one of the Democracy Partners activists featured in O’Keefe’s videos, worked with Breitbart during the primary. According to the source, Black, who was also an organizer for Occupy Wall Street, had an informal alliance with Breitbart, “tipping it off about his stunts, exchanging raw video and coordinating coverage” of Black’s antics at events for Republican candidates.

“He [Black] worked directly with Breitbart’s political team on the ground in the primary states to sabotage Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, and elect Trump as nominee of [the Republican] party,” the source told Politico. “[Black] was coordinating with [Breitbart’s] top staff to rabble rouse against Rubio at rallies.” The source says that Black was friendly with the Breitbart staff and that contacts were made by phone, email and in person.

In one widely circulated picture, Black, dressed in a silver robot costume, confronted Rubio in a hallway. Video from New Hampshire shows Black and other activists heckling Rubio supporters last February. A Breitbart “exclusive” from February details a physical confrontation between a robot-costumed protester and the chairman of Rubio’s New Hampshire campaign. The Breitbart story identifies the protester as Aaron Black.

Breitbart supported Donald Trump early in the primary and was particularly critical of Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. The relationship between the website and the Trump campaign became even more cozy when Paul Manafort was forced to leave the campaign due to his close ties to Vladimir Putin. Trump replaced Manafort, his campaign manager, with Steven Bannon, Breitbart’s chairman.

After the death of founder Andrew Breitbart, Bannon’s leadership turned the website from a respected conservative news source to a transparent, laughable propaganda page. Former Breitbart editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro wrote in the Daily Wire that Bannon “has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda…the facts are undeniable: Breitbart News has become precisely the reverse of what Andrew would have wanted.”

It is unconscionable that a conservative website like Breitbart would work with a radical liberal activist against other conservative Republicans. To condemn Hillary’s campaign for the same tactics that Breitbart used only underscores Steve Bannon’s hypocrisy.

Originally published on The Resurgent.

Trump trails in Florida

Donald Trump always had a narrow path to the presidency. The Democrat electoral base comes with heavily populated urban states that give a natural advantage to any Democrat candidate. Any Republican must nearly run the table of the traditional swing states. Ohio, North Carolina and Virginia, with their large numbers of electoral votes, are must-win states for any Republican who hopes to become president. Florida, with 29 electoral votes, is the big prize among the swing states.

Throughout the spring and summer, Donald Trump hotly contested Florida. In the Republican primary, Trump beat local candidate Senator Marco Rubio by nearly 20 points. According to New York Times coverage of the results, Trump won every county in Florida with the exception of one. Miami-Dade County went to Rubio.

Throughout the summer, Trump kept the race for Florida’s electoral votes in a deadlock. Although he never firmly established a lead in the state, Trump kept the race in a statistical tie. For about a month, from the middle of August to the middle of September, Real Clear Politics shows that Trump may have held a small lead.

Now it looks as though Clinton has surged and Trump is firmly behind in the state that can be considered home territory for him since it is the location of his famous Mar-a-Lago mansion. For over a month, since the beginning of September, Donald Trump has led in only two of 17 polls listed by Real Clear Politics. Both of these polls showed a one-point lead, which is a statistical tie, due to the polling margin of error. The last time Trump led in Florida was an Emerson poll that was taken from October 2-4, before the debates and the release of the “Access Hollywood” sex tape.

In contrast, Hillary Clinton not only is winning the polls in this must-win state, but her advantage seems to be very consistent across a large number of polls. Since Florida is such an important state in presidential elections, it is polled frequently and by many different organizations. Every poll in the past three weeks shows at least a three-point advantage for Clinton. While three points is within the margin of error for most polls, the fact that all the polls are consistent gives them credibility as a whole.

Florida is always a close state and this year will be no exception. Twice, in 2000 and 2012, the difference between victory and defeat was less than one percent according to archived results on The only election in the past 20 years where Florida was won by more than five points was 1996 when Bill Clinton (D) beat Bob Dole (R) and Ross Perot (I). Perot pulled votes from Dole and allowed Clinton to win by six points.

This year, third party candidates seem to make little difference. Libertarian Gary Johnson is on the ballot, but independent candidate Evan McMullin was denied a spot on the ballot as the candidate of the Independent Party of Florida by the Republican administration of Gov. Rick Scott. Politico noted that many consider the move to deny ballot access to McMullin illegal and unconstitutional, but it almost certainly was beneficial to Trump. Nevertheless, polls conducted with and without Johnson indicate that he has little effect on the race.

Another Florida candidate is having better luck against his Democrat challenger. Marco Rubio, the man that Donald Trump beat by almost 20 points in the primary, is now polling better than Trump. Although Rubio has lost some ground in recent weeks, perhaps due to fallout from the Trump scandals, he maintains a two-point lead over Democrat Patrick Murphy. After Rubio beat Murphy handily in their debate, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee pulled funding from Murphy’s campaign, which should help Rubio going forward.

As Trump’s hopes for Florida fade, his chances for winning the White House become almost nonexistent. Without Florida’s 29 electoral votes, there is no path to victory for Trump. This makes Senate races like Rubio’s all the more important for maintaining the ability resist the liberal agenda of President Hillary Clinton.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Trump turns red states blue

Back in the primary, there were bold predictions that a candidate like Donald Trump could redraw the electoral map. Trump’s mix of populism, protectionism and isolationism could turn Rust Belt states blue the argument ran. Nine months later, as Election Day rapidly approaches, it seems that the predictions of different electoral map were true, but not in the way Republicans expected.

New polling suggests that Trump is on the verge of losing several deep red states. Arizona, Georgia and even Texas have all been moved into the swing state category for the Trump-Clinton race. The Real Clear Politics average shows the race tightening in both Georgia and Texas. In both states, Trump holds a lead within the polling margin of error. In Arizona, the lead has shifted over the past two months. Trump has lost a slim lead and is now trailing Hillary Clinton by a five-point margin in the most recent Arizona Republic poll.

A common thread among these states is the high percentage of nonwhite voters. A Pew survey of the 2016 electorate shows that both Texas and Arizona have high numbers of Hispanic voters. Almost a third of Texas voters are Hispanic while, among Arizona voters, the percentage Hispanic voters is just over a fifth. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Trump’s anti-Mexico rhetoric and plans to build a wall along the Mexican border seem not to be popular with most Hispanic voters. A recent Wall Street Journal poll found Hispanic support for the Republican at 18 percent.

Georgia has fewer Hispanics, but the state is still ethnically diverse. The Atlanta Journal estimated last year that 40 percent of Georgia’s electorate would be minority voters. At about a third of voters, blacks make up Georgia’s largest minority. In August, a Public Policy poll found Trump’s support among blacks to be effectively at zero.

But what about Alaska, another deep red state with few minority voters? The one poll of Alaskans showed Trump with only a three-point lead over Hillary Clinton. The Moore AK poll found Trump leading with the support of only 37 percent of voters. There are not enough Hispanic or black voters in Alaska to blame Trump’s lack of support on race or ethnicity.

Aside from race, the gender gap is the other big problem for Trump. A recent analysis by FiveThirtyEight[D1]  found that women support Clinton by a 15-point margin while men support Trump by only five-points. In several recent polls, Clinton has even won male voters outright. In 2012 polls, Obama and Romney’s lead among women and men

More women than men vote. In 2012, 53 percent of the electorate was female while 47 percent was male according to CNN exit polls. Obama won women by 11-points while Romney won men by seven points. The fact that Trump is losing women by a double-digit margin while also doing poorly with men can explain why he is in danger of losing states that are normally safe for Republican candidates.

A bright spot for Republicans is that Trump’s problems do not doom other Republicans. Republican congressional candidates are generally polling better than Mr. Trump. The bad news is that many of them are locked in tight races that must be considered tossups. A few votes lost because of Donald Trump can make a difference.

Originally published on The Resurgent


Saturday, October 22, 2016

Trump's election rigging claims debunked

As Donald Trump declined in the polls, he began making claims that elections are rigged and that the system is stacked against him. Trump even went so far as to say that he may not accept the decision of the voters on November 8.

It is true that there have been recent instances of voter fraud in this country. The 2008 Senate race in which Democrat Al Franken beat incumbent Republican Norm Coleman stands as one of the sleaziest episodes in recent electoral history. Democrats “found” enough votes in recounts to turn a Coleman victory into a Franken upset. A watchdog group later found that enough felons had voted illegally to sway the election.

The electoral system is not foolproof. Even in states with voter ID laws, there are ways to commit voter fraud. People can vote in more than one state. They can abuse absentee ballots. They can buy votes. Elected officials or political groups can suppress or intimidate voters.

There is an easy way to tell if Donald Trump is in danger of losing the election due to a rigged system. If the system is rigged against Republicans, then the Democrats orchestrating the fraud would probably want to elect Democrats to Congress as well as the White House. If Democrats are manipulating the races and polling, then Democratic congressional candidates should be performing as well as Hillary Clinton. Republican candidates should be performing as poorly as Mr. Trump. A quick look at several hotly contested races should determine whether Trump’s charge of election rigging is accurate.

  • ·         In Florida, Donald Trump trails Hillary Clinton by four points according to the Real Clear Politics average. In contrast, Senator Marco Rubio leads his Democrat challenger by a five-point average. Marco Rubio performed so well at his debate this week that Democrats have cut off funding to his challenger. Florida is a must-win state for Trump.
  • ·         In the blue state of Illinois, Clinton leads by an average of 15 points. Tammy Duckworth, the Democrat challenging Republican Mark Kirk also holds a lead, but by only seven points.
  • ·         Trump trails Hillary Clinton by four points in Nevada. Republican Joe Heck and Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto are locked in a close race for Harry Reid’s Senate seat.
  • ·         In New Hampshire, Trump trails Clinton by eight points. Kelly Ayotte, the incumbent Republican, is in a close race with Maggie Hassan. Most polling shows the race in a dead heat, but one outlier poll shows Hassan up by nine points.
  • ·         In Ohio, another state critical to the Trump campaign, the presidential race is in a statistical tie. On the other hand, Senator Rob Portman, the Republican incumbent is cruising to reelection with a 15-point lead.

The story is the same in other states as well. Trump is running behind Republican Senators in Georgia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. In Texas, where there is no Senate race this year, Clinton polls within five points of Trump. Mitt Romney won this reddest of red states by 16 points.

In one interesting case, Trump actually trails Clinton by one point, within the margin of error, in Arizona. John McCain, the incumbent Republican who is reviled by many as a “Republican in name only,” leads his Democratic opponent by 15 points. Arizona is not normally a swing state.

In state after state, Donald Trump performs poorly when compared to other Republican candidates. If there was really a conspiracy to rig the vote against Mr. Trump, his Democrat opponents would probably scheme to defraud Republican congressional candidates as well. There is no indication that this is happening.

Trump’s performance seems to be poor across the board. He lags behind other Republicans in red, blue and swing states. Trump is in trouble regardless of whether local voters are conservative or liberal and whether election officials are Democrats or Republicans.  

Since many of the same voters who prefer a Republican congressional candidate over a Democrat choose Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump, Trump’s theory of rigged elections can be discarded. If, after watching him for a year, voters, including many Republicans, are rejecting The Donald, he should bear the blame himself and accept responsibility.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Millennial voters want Obama as president for life

A new poll of millennial voters has disturbing news for conservatives who hope to see liberty and constitutional rights extended to the next generation. When asked to choose between Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump or several alternatives, a plurality of millennials selected a life term for President Obama.

The survey by UMASS Lowell asked respondents to select between five alternatives. The choices were a “(1) a Clinton Presidency, (2) a Trump Presidency, (3) Obama appointing himself to a life term as President, (4) A giant meteor strikes the earth and extinguishes all human life and (5) the President is selected by a random lottery from among all U.S. citizens.”

The results found that “39% of millennials prefer that Obama serve a life term as President rather than have either a Clinton or Trump Presidency, 26% prefer a random lottery to either serving as President, and 23% (nearly 1 in 4!) prefer a giant meteor and the extinguishing of human life….” On an individual basis, voters preferred a lifetime Obama presidency to Trump by 66 percent and to Clinton by 51 percent.

Sixty-seven percent preferred a random lottery to being governed by Donald Trump. Thirty-nine percent would rather have a lottery than President Clinton. This hearkens to William F. Buckley’s statement that, “I should sooner live in a society governed by the first two thousand names in the Boston telephone directory than in a society governed by the two thousand faculty members of Harvard University.”

The reference to SMOD, the “sweet meteor of death,” that has become a running joke this campaign season is amusing. The millennials who selected an extinction level event for the human race over Trump and Hillary shouldn’t necessarily be taken seriously. After all, four years of Trump or Hillary isn’t literally the end of the world.

On the other hand, the idea of a strong leader who can bend Congress and the courts to his will is a real threat to a constitutional republic. The idea of Obama as a benevolent dictator is not entirely new. In 2015, a Rasmussen poll found that 26 percent of likely voters believed that President Obama should ignore the courts “if they are standing in the way of actions he feels are important for the country.” An even higher share of Democrats, 43 percent, agreed with only 35 percent opposed to the idea.

America’s system of government is broken and millennials realize this. The rub is that they probably don’t realize what they wish for longing for a president-for-life. Part of the blame lies with liberal-leaning colleges and universities that whitewash the crimes against humanity of communism. Part of the blame lies with a dysfunctional Congress and judiciary. Part of the blame lies with conservatives who have not instilled a love for liberty and respect for the Constitution and rule of law in their children.

As Ronald Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.”

This poll should be a wakeup call.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Democrats slash funds to Rubio challenger

In a bit of good news for conservatives and Republicans, it appears that Marco Rubio (R-Fl.) has scored a TKO against the Democratic challenger for his Florida Senate seat. Rubio met Patrick Murphy on Monday in Orlando for their first debate. The following day, Politico reported that the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee pulled all funding from Murphy for the remainder of the campaign.

The Florida race was one of several tossup races that Democrats hoped to win in order to gain control of the Senate. Several weeks ago, it seemed that those hopes were fading. Then came Donald Trump’s sexual harassment scandal and the problem of guilt by party association for sitting Republicans who had endorsed Trump. Now it seems that at least Rubio’s seat in Florida may be safe.

The race isn’t over yet though. Politico points out that even without the DSCC money, the Rubio and Murphy campaigns are evenly matched with cash on hand. The decision means that Rubio will have an advantage since he will continue to receive money from the GOP Leadership Fund that can be used to outspend Murphy in the final days before the election.

Democrats claim that the decision to dump Murphy had nothing to do with his debate performance, but was a strategic call. According to Politico, the party felt that the money would be better spent on Senate races in North Carolina and Missouri where they might be able to knock off Republicans Richard Burr and Roy Blunt for the same cost as attacking Rubio.

Marco Rubio has consistently held a lead over Murphy for the past few weeks, but most polls show the race near the margin of error. The most recent poll, released yesterday but taken before the debate, showed Rubio ahead by only two points.

In spite of losing Florida to Donald Trump in the Republican primary, Rubio is now running ahead of the presidential candidate. Hillary Clinton leads Trump in Florida, a must-win swing state for the GOP, by four points in several recent polls.

Recent Wikileaks revelations show that Hillary Clinton promoted the Trump campaign in the Republican primary while considering Rubio a more dangerous threat in the general election. Polling trends show that Clinton’s assessment of Trump’s weaknesses and Rubio’s strengths were accurate.

Originally published on The Resurgent

McMullin takes the lead in Utah

After several polls showing independent conservative Evan McMullin gaining ground in Utah, a new poll just out shows the third party candidate in the lead for the deep red state’s electoral votes. The poll by Emerson shows McMullin leading Republican Donald Trump 31-27 percent. The four-point lead is outside the margin of error for the poll. Democrat Hillary Clinton is in third place with 24 percent and Gary Johnson’s share of the vote has collapsed to five percent.

Over the last week, Trump’s sexual harassment accusations and “unshackled” behavior have taken a toll on his support among conservatives across the country. Nowhere have his problems been more obvious than in Utah, normally a Republican stronghold. Trump has seen a double-digit lead evaporate in the face of a series of scandals and a strong grassroots challenge by the conservative third party candidate.

The new poll culminates a week of good publicity for the McMullin campaign. Numerous conservative pundits and state and local officials have endorsed the former CIA agent and Republican policy advisor. Talk show host Glenn Beck, who recently said that he was not supporting Donald Trump, featured McMullin in two interviews on his show.

The insurgent candidate has not been included in most national polling or in states outside of Utah so it is difficult to predict his impact on the race. Sources in the campaign believe that McMullin may be gaining ground in other western states such as Nevada and Idaho. In the primary, Donald Trump fared poorly in many western states.

McMullin garnered national attention last week when the FiveThirtyEight blog detailed a scenario in which he might actually be able to win the White House. First, he would have to deny both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump an outright win in the Electoral College. Second, he would have to win at least one electoral vote for himself. Utah’s six electoral votes would work nicely. Finally, he would have to persuade a majority of the state delegations to the House of Representatives that they should pick him over Trump or Hillary. If that sounds like a tall order, it is. At the time, FiveThirtyEight rated McMullin’s chances of winning the presidency at one to three percent. (As of this writing, they rate Donald Trump’s chances of winning at 12 percent.)

As McMullin surges in Utah, the increased attention and name recognition may help his campaign in other states as well. This could be a blessing or a curse. When Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson surged last month, he quickly became the butt of jokes for his “Aleppo moments” and a bizarre clip in which he stuck his tongue out at an interviewer.

McMullin also can hurt his campaign strategy by running too strong a campaign. If the Trump campaign does poorly in the swing states or loses more red states, Hillary Clinton would win enough electoral votes to become president outright. An Electoral College deadlock requires Trump to perform reasonably well. With the recent Trump collapse in the polls, an outright Clinton win seems more and more likely.

The McMullin campaign is on the ballot or has registered as a write-in candidate in 34 states. Evan McMullin’s website contains information on how Americans can vote for him in their state.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Congress is the key to stopping Hillary

A major argument for Donald Trump has been that “He’s not a great candidate or a conservative, but we need him to prevent Hillary from picking Supreme Court justices who will gut the Second Amendment.” Given the numerous questionable characters that Trump has chosen to work on his campaign, the idea that he knows how to “hire the best people” is dubious at best. Now, as the “Trump train” goes off the rails three weeks before the election, it is becoming apparent that conservatives need to find an alternative strategy to save the Court and block Hillary. The key to stopping the liberal agenda for the next four years is Congress, specifically the Senate. 

Let’s face it. Depending on Trump to appoint strict constructionists to the Supreme Court was always a long shot. The possibility that Trump might appoint good judges outweighs the certainty that Hillary won’t, Trump supporters argue. If one ignores all the other arguments against Trump, it might even be convincing. Yet as Trump goes rogue on the campaign trail, even that slim possibility seems to be vanishing as a Clinton victory grows more and more likely.

The only certain way to stop Hillary’s agenda before it starts is to make sure that the Republican majority in the Senate is preserved. Many Trump supporters will say that the Republicans in Congress didn’t do much to stop Obama for the past six years. They are wrong. The truth is that Republicans in Congress were very successful at stopping Obama’s legislative agenda.

After the Tea Party wave election of 2010, the Democrats did not pass any major legislation for the next six years. Obama’s landmark laws, the stimulus, the Affordable Care Act and the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill, were passed with Democrat majorities in both houses. Not a single Republican voted for Obamacare or the stimulus.

The Republicans in Congress were remarkably successful at stopping President Obama’s legislative agenda. Obama tried to push through gun control in the wake of the Newtown massacre. Republicans stopped him. They actually cut spending in terms of real dollars in consecutive years for the first time since the administration of Dwight Eisenhower. After the death of Antonin Scalia, Republicans in the Senate tabled President Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to fill the vacant seat on the Supreme Court. How much credit did Republicans get for these victories? Approximately zero.

Much of the confusion over the Republican Congress “surrendering” to Obama, as many claim, is the difference between stopping Obama and passing legislation to roll back what Obama has already done. Congress is set up so that it is easier to prevent a bill from becoming a law than to enact a new law. This is particularly true in the Senate.

In the Senate, the first hurdle that a bill must pass to become a law is a cloture vote. Cloture is a gentleman’s filibuster. Rather than speaking for hours on end as they did in the old days, today’s Congressmen can block a bill from coming to a vote by rallying 41 opponents to vote against cloture, or ending the filibuster. Therefore, the 46 Democrats in the Senate could effectively block any Republican bill from ever coming to a vote and that is precisely what they did.

The cloture rule is not part of the Constitution. Senators could decide to eliminate it in favor of a straight majority vote. The problem is that there is an even greater hurdle. If a bill passes both houses of Congress, it still faces a presidential veto. To override a veto requires 67 votes in the Senate. Logically, if a bill can’t pass a cloture vote, the veto can’t be overridden.

When the Republicans blocked Obama legislatively, he began issuing expansive Executive Orders and having regulatory agencies issue rulings with the force of law. Because these tactics bypassed Congress, Republicans could not block them. Stopping these abuses would require passing new laws, but the 54 Republicans could not pass new laws without Democratic support. That reality doesn’t change even with a government shutdown. The situation has effectively been a stalemate with neither side willing to compromise on most issues.

Because of the number of Republican Senate seats up for reelection in swing states this year, it was generally assumed that the Republican majority would be smaller for the next Congress. As recently as a few weeks ago, it looked like Republicans would retain control of the Senate, even if they lost some seats. Then came Trump’s implosion.

Not only have the Trump scandals hurt down ballot Republicans, but Trump and his supporters have attacked his fellow GOP candidates. At this point, it seems increasingly likely that the Democrats will win control of the Senate. Even the large Republican majority in the House may be threatened.

While retaining the House would allow Republicans to block legislation such as gun control measures from becoming law, losing the Senate would mean that Democrats could easily appoint extremist liberal judges to the courts with a simple majority vote. There is no filibuster for most judicial appointees thanks to Sen. Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) use of the “nuclear option” in 2013. With a Democrat Congress and a Democrat president, the filibuster might be eliminated entirely.

On the other hand, retaining control of the Senate would allow Republicans to stop Hillary’s agenda right out of the gate. Appointments to the Supreme Court could theoretically be blocked until after the 2020 elections, if necessary. The Senate has already shown its willingness to stop bad treaties and liberal legislation in its tracks.

There should be no illusions, however, that Republicans can roll back eight years of Obama under Hillary. Even if they retain a majority, they will almost certainly be weaker, at least until the midterm elections. Historically, the opposition party gains seats in the midterms, but even then there is almost no chance of a 67 vote Republican majority.

While it would be preferable to have a Republican president to help pass conservative reforms, Donald Trump is no conservative and has shown little inclination to work with his party. If Trump becomes president and Republicans lose Congress, he could not be trusted to nominate constructionist judges or veto gun control bills. He cannot be trusted to support religious liberty. There is a high probability that he would act with liberal Democrats like Bernie Sanders to scuttle free trade agreements and military alliances.

With Trump falling to the 30 percent range in many polls and trailing in most swing states, there is little chance of a recovery. Republican funds would be better spent on tossup congressional races to preserve the Republican majority than in attempting to shore up a candidate who is biting the hand that feeds him.

If the choice is between an unreliable President Trump and a Republican Senate that has shown its mettle, I’ll throw in my lot with the congressional Republicans.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Monday, October 17, 2016

Trump has record fundraising month, but still falls short

The Trump campaign announced over the weekend that they had set a campaign record for fundraising in September. According to a statement on, the campaign took in $100 million dollars last month. According to the statement, the Trump campaign has received more than $360 million dollars from 2.6 million people since it began. USA Today reports that the Republican National Committee raised an additional $39 million. Like Trump’s claim that he got more votes than any other candidate in any Republican primary, there is both good and bad news associated with the fundraising claim.

While impressive, the $100 million take is alarming when taken in the full context of the campaign. The most obvious problem is that the figure includes a monthly contribution of $2 million by Mr. Trump himself. Trump’s contribution “more than covered the costs of any reimbursements to him (or his related entities) for his plane and office rent; which the law mandates to be reimbursed,” the statement said.

Even more alarming is the fact that Trump’s fundraising lags behind Hillary Clinton as well as that of Mitt Romney four years ago. Politico reports that the Clinton campaign raised more than $154 million during September. This includes $84 million by Hillary for America and $70 million by the Democratic National Committee.

Unlike Clinton, who can count on assistance from the DNC, the Trump campaign may be on its own. After the release of the “Access Hollywood” tape, Politico obtained an email from the Republican National Committee stopping production on Trump campaign materials paid for by the GOP “Victory” fund. It is uncertain at this point whether the RNC is financially supporting the Trump campaign or for how long the campaign can count on its support as Trump falls in the polls.

Trump and Clinton both lag far behind Mitt Romney’s fundraising from 2012. The L.A. Times reported four years ago that Romney had raised $170 million, which was short of the $181 million raised by Obama. At this point in the campaign, Romney had raised $839 million, more than double the receipts of the Trump campaign.

The $100 million figure may also be offset by refunds. Fortune reports that some GOP donors are asking for their money back in the wake of the sexual assault scandal. It is unknown whether the Trump campaign will return any funds, but donor displeasure with Trump will almost certainly impact his fundraising going forward.

On the plus side, Trump has set Republican records with small donors. “I’ve never seen anything like this,” a Republican fundraising operative told Politico. “He’s the Republican Obama in terms of online fundraising.”

That small donor success has come at the cost of losing larger donors though. Many traditional GOP fundraisers have not supported the nontraditional nominee. Some donors, such as megadonor Sheldon Adelson, are focusing on support for congressional races rather than contributing to the RNC or Trump campaigns, said USA Today.

Much of the Clinton advantage in fundraising comes from her Wall Street connections and other wealthy donors.  Fortune found that Clinton is outraising Trump among billionaires by 20 to one. In fact, another Fortune article reports that no Fortune 500 CEOs are supporting Donald Trump, even though almost a third of them supported Mitt Romney. It is surprising that a candidate who based his campaign on his business acumen doesn’t garner support from his fellow business leaders.

In spite of a good month in September, Trump’s fundraising may well have reached its peak. Trump’s populist rhetoric and bombastic personality have hurt his ability to raise funds throughout the campaign. Now, it is likely that scandals will be a financial drag for the last few weeks before the election. The fundraising deficit will make it difficult for Trump to overcome negative attacks and reverse his decline in the polls.

Originally published on the Resurgent

Could Trump be prosecuted for sexual assault?

Most of the focus on the sexual assault charges against Donald Trump has been on how they would affect his campaign. Will the accusations hurt Trump’s chances with women? Will they cause Christians to desert him? Few have considered the implications of the charges on Donald Trump’s personal life and business. The accusations against Trump are that he engaged in behavior that was not only unethical and immoral, but also illegal. Is there a possibility that Donald Trump could be prosecuted? Could Trump go to jail?

The charges against Trump fall under the broad category of sexual assault. Such crimes are typically prosecuted at the state and local level, rather than by the federal government. Each jurisdiction will have its own definition in its criminal code, but the US Department of Justice website contains a definition that should be similar to most statutes around the country. According to the DOJ, “Sexual assault is any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient. Falling under the definition of sexual assault are sexual activities as forced sexual intercourse, forcible sodomy, child molestation, incest, fondling, and attempted rape.”

There are two major hurdles to prosecuting Trump for sexual assault. The first is evidence. Some types of sexual assault leave physical evidence. For example, in the case of rape, bodily fluids and injuries to the victim can support the accuser’s story. There is unlikely to be physical evidence to support the accusations against Trump because he is accused of improper touching, kissing and fondling, not intercourse.

Testimony by witnesses is another type of evidence. Because Trump’s actions allegedly occurred in private, there would be few, if any, witnesses to corroborate the stories of his accusers. This does not exonerate Trump either since it is plausible that he would only become aggressive in private when there were no witnesses.

Since many of the women who have come forward to accuse Trump allege that their stories were from several years ago, there is also the statute of limitations to consider. The statute of limitations establishes a time limit to bring charges against a defendant. In Florida, where some of the assaults are alleged to have occurred, the statute of limitations was doubled to eight years in 2015 according to WFTV. The measure is not retroactive, however, so the alleged assault on “People” magazine reporter Natasha Stoynoff in 2005 would be considered stale. does note a provision in Florida law that places a hold on the statute of limitations when the defendant is not in the state. Since Trump does not live continuously in Florida, he might be culpable on some incidents beyond the normal four or eight years. This provision can be used to extend the statute of limitations for “not more than three years.”

In New York, where several incidents are alleged to have taken place, the statute of limitations is even more restrictive. According to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, the statute of limitations in New York ranges from two years for a misdemeanor to five years for a felony. For some sexual crimes, such as rape or aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree or sexual conduct against a child, there is no statute of limitations. So far, the accusations against Trump do not fall into the latter category.

There is also a civil lawsuit pending against Trump that alleges that he raped a 13-year-old girl in 1994. The suit alleges that Trump attended sex parties at the New York home of Jeffrey Epstein where he raped the plaintiff, known by the pseudonym “Katie Johnson,” on numerous occasions.  The suit was previously filed in California where it was dismissed on a technicality.

Jeffrey Epstein is a billionaire who is a convicted sex offender and who has associated with both Bill Clinton and Donald Trump. In 2008, Epstein was convicted of soliciting prostitution from girls as young as 14. He is widely believed to have run a private sex slave island in the US Virgin Islands where his rich friends could have sex with underage girls.

“I've known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,'' Trump told “New York” magazine in a 2002 profile of Epstein. “He's a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it -- Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

The rape accusations are outside the statute of limitations, but the suit asks that the five-year limit be waived due to the plaintiff’s age. She also claims that Trump and Epstein threatened the girl and her family if she reported the abuse. The Real Deal quotes the lawsuit complaint, “Both defendants let plaintiff know that each was a very wealthy, powerful man and indicated that they had the power, ability and means to carry out their threat.”

Because the lawsuit against Trump is a civil case, it won’t result in jail time for Trump, even if he loses. There is the possibility that he will have to pay a civil penalty. Epstein has settled several similar suits outside of court. The case won’t go to trial until December 16, long after the election is over.

So far, Donald Trump has denied all accusations of sexual assault. He claims that his comments on the now-infamous “Access Hollywood” tape were “locker room talk” that he never acted on. Trump told a crowd in Charlotte, N.C on CNN, “As you have seen, I am a victim of one of the great political smear campaigns in the history of our country.”

Whether the accusations are true or not, the lack of evidence and statute of limitations mean that Trump probably doesn't have to worry about going to jail or being forced to register as a sex offender. That could change if an accuser comes forward with a more recent incident.

Originally published on The Resurgent

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Glenn Beck says rejecting Trump is 'moral, ethical choice'

In a shocking post to Facebook, conservative author and radio host Glenn Beck said that not voting for Hillary is a “moral, ethical choice” for Republicans. Beck stopped short of calling on Republicans to vote for Clinton, but did call on Trump to step down in the post dated October 8.

“It is not acceptable to ask a moral, dignified man to cast his vote to help elect an immoral man who is absent decency or dignity,” Beck wrote. “If the consequence of standing against Trump and for principles is indeed the election of Hillary Clinton, so be it. At least it is a moral, ethical choice.”

Beck pointed out that, if Hillary becomes president, her agenda and her nominees can be blocked if the Republican Party retains control of the Senate and House of Representatives. In contrast, many of Donald Trump’s possible actions, such as torpedoing NAFTA and not honoring NATO defense commitments, could not be blocked by Congress. The Constitution gives the president control of the military and the president traditionally sets the tone on foreign policy.

“The alternative,” a Trump presidency, “does not offer a moral person the same opportunity,” Beck continues. “If one helps to elect an immoral man to the highest office, then one is merely validating his immorality, lewdness, and depravity.”

Glenn Beck is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Members of the Mormon Church have led the Republican revolt against Donald Trump. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) and other members of the Utah Republican delegation were among the first to repudiate Trump after release of the lewd video on Friday.

Beck did not endorse Hillary Clinton in the Facebook post. He also did not say who he plans to vote for or if he plans to vote at all. It is possible that Beck will support Utah independent conservative Evan McMullin. McMullin was previously endorsed by fellow talk show host, Erick Erickson.

“Trump stepping down does not guarantee a Clinton win,” Beck said, “but it does guarantee that the Republican party still stands for something, still allows its members to maintain their [sic] own self-respect and that it still has a future.”

Originally published on  The Resurgent