Updated TruthTeller Battleground Electoral Map & Forecast

Here’s our current projected map and EV forecast. At 375 EVs, we’re a bit above the consensus, due to our positive view in Georgia and Iowa. Enjoy!

2016-evmap-002-dy1023-finalAs far as the new swing-voter model test is concerned, we’ve now reached a major milestone. We had hypothesized that in this weird election year, the majority of late-deciders would go for Clinton. Through three weeks of testing since the first Presidential debate, that is happening to a degree well beyond my expectations.

Using the daily pollling averages of the twelve key Battleground states, we have determined that in these specific states

  • Johnson has lost 22% of his support
  • The Green Party has lost (so far) only 4% of their support
  • 13% (so far) of the undecided voters have made up their minds.

Drumroll, please: all of these losses have gone to Clinton. Trump is at exactly the support level he enjoyed on September 26.

We’ll continue tracking the changes in the 3rd party/undecideds cohorts every day. But at this point, we are sufficiently confident in our tracking math to say that Clinton will win every Battleground state on November 8th, most by a substantial margin.

We can also say with confidence that this will be a so-called wave election, allowing the Democrats to make aggressive gains in the Senate and House. But due to the difficulty in predicting the splits in the expected surge of last-day votes, we won’t know how many House seats Clinton’s coattails can flip until November 9th.

I feel compelled to add a footnote. It’s clear from our measurements that Jill Stein’s Green Party could hurt Clinton’s House push if the party members fail to vote for the Democratic House candidate in their district. Vote Green if you want to send a message, but be sure to vote for the folks who can help Clinton implement your agenda.


With just three weeks to go…

…The Clinton Coalition is on the verge of swamping the Republicans in a wave not seen since Lyndon Johnson crushed them in 1964. Many pundits are finally awakening to this possibility; we intimated as much months ago in our first Battleground map.

Could something suddenly throw up a roadblock to the looming progressive victory? Well, sure; in an era of Wikileaks and sensationalistic revelations it would be daft to assume that the contest is over before it’s truly over: we’ve only to remember how Trump threw himself under his own fancy bus just ten days ago.

But time is short, and it’s unlikely in our judgment Clinton’s juggernaut can be slowed, much lest stopped. The notion that some massive mob of mystery Trump supporters will emerge from their shadows of shame, vote for him, and pull off a surprise win is, sorry, absurd.

The TruthTeller swing vote predictor tool

We’re still testing the new model with each day’s results, but the trend is clear: third party and undecided voters are making up their minds for Clinton, not Trump.

Long-demonstrated political experience says that most third party and undecided voters will opt to support one or the other of the two major party candidates as the contest nears decision day. Conventional wisdom has it that these last-minute deciders will tend to split roughly fifty-fifty.

Seeing the very substantial number of third party and undecideds this year, we wondered if that might foretell a different split. Our theory was, loosely, that the late-deciding voters would disproportionately decide for Clinton. Our reasoning was simple:

  • Most Libertarian leaners had come to that party to avoid Trump, not because they weren’t sure if they should oppose him, and he’s done nothing to make them change their mind
  • The Green party supporters are the hard-core activists for climate change mitigation; there’s no way many of them would ever be Trump supporters
  • The undecided voters were unhappy with both major party candidates, so, yes, they might split down the middle at the end, but given the odious nature of Trump, our gut said the majority would not trust him in the Oval Office, no matter how much they did not trust Clinton in general.

We therefore concluded that

  1. The majority of last-minute deciders would vote Democratic
  2. Many of the rest would stay home rather than support Trump

As announced to our readers, I proceeded to construct a last-minute swing vote model that could predict such a result in credible numbers.

The express objective? To test my hypothesis that in this specific and uniquely messy election, as the three categories of “swing” voters gradually opt for one or the other major parties, the disproportional majority of them will go for Clinton.

How it works

Unlike current models, ours contrasts a consolidation of polling in the twelve main Battleground states with the averaged consensus national poll. We know the results in the BG states will tend to be tighter, since that is where the contest is being waged most intensely. But the national trend is also important, since that correlates better with how each party will do in the Congressional races.

The model employs only recent state polls in the more or less “traditional” Battleground states, namely: Virginia, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, Nevada, Ohio, and Iowa, plus a twelfth I added last Spring, Arizona, after I realized the Latino vote was swelling there along with Colorado and Nevada. (Georgia, which I saw as another potential new swing state, has so far this cycle failed to develop sufficiently to make the Battleground cut, but should be there by 2020.)

Basically, our BG sub-model allocates 1200 percentage points — twelve states times 100 — across the five distinct voting categories:

  • Clinton supporters
  • Trump backers

plus what I define as the three categories of “swing” voters

  • Libertarians
  • Greens
  • Undecideds

We were ready to begin test runs on September 26th, the day of the first debate.

Complications — what else is new?

After a week or so of initial runs, we were gratified to see just the sort of trending our thought-model had suggested. In the two weeks between the first and second debates, we saw a steady increase in Clinton’s percentage of the vote across the BG states, excepting Iowa.

In the same period, we saw Trump’s share of the vote holding more or less steady. Meaning her gains had to be coming from the third parties and/or the undecideds. But the undecideds were also holding at the level of September 26th, so her gains were in fact coming from the two third party candidates. These voters were NOT going to Trump, just as our hypothesis had predicted. Satisfactory, dear Watson.

Then, on Friday October 7th, we all saw the Access Hollywood tape. Almost overnight the numbers began to roil, mainly due to millions of women, and men too, rejecting Trump’s boorish behavior, along with his insincere apology for it. In the week since, the polling has been all over the NBC Studios lot, as women come forth to accuse Trump of being a sexist liar and molester.

How a trend becomes a wave

Just before the 2nd debate, we were ready to share the preliminary results of our testing with you readers. The results at that point projected a strong Dem victory in every one of the twelve key Battleground states, even including Iowa. More importantly, the new tool forecasted a national win for Clinton of 12.2 points over Trump.

This margin is terribly important, since anything above 6 or 7 points nationally can spell a major win in the Senate and House of Representatives contests. In 2008, for example, the Obama team flipped 21 House seats after beating McCain by 7 points. If our estimate of 12% turned out to be correct, the 30 seats needed to return the House to Democratic control would likely be within reach.

But then, two immature boors on a bus happens, and the polling numbers go bananas.

They’re still unsettled, but our latest run, Saturday the 15th, suggests a winning Clinton margin above 14%. Gulp. We’ll keep running the tests, and hope that we see a final trend emerge about five days after the upcoming Wednesday third debate. That should let us make a prediction for the Democratic prospects in the House, with, still, nearly two weeks to go before voting day.

Watch this space!

“Survivor 2016 — Rumble in the Jungle”

Where is Mark Burnett when we really need him? Oh yeah — he’s guarding the MGM vault where all the “Apprentice” production videos are hidden. Pity. Thanks to iron-clad legal agreements between the show’s principals, chances are we’ll never even see so much as a snippet from those thousands of hours full of Trump’s disparaging, bullying, sexist remarks.

No doubt most voters will be glad to hear that another video tape starring Trump at his boorish worst is unlikely before November 8th. Me, too, at least on one level. But the statistically inarguable truth is that were we all to see the unreal reality star on tape, joking about forcibly f**king or molesting a cringing female cast or production staff member to her face, it would be the end of Trump’s candidacy. Period, as Ryan likes to say. Full stop.

Of course such a videotaped revelation would also mean the likely end of a Republican House majority, period. Full stop.

So we’re left with the latest unprovable if emotionally-charged accusations against the sleazy buffoon. Will these allegations be enough to cause his few remaining educated female supporters to either switch their support to Clinton, or, if not, stay home on voting day? What proportion of them might go to the polls, simply skip the Presidential box and vote for the Republicans down-ballot?

These and similar possibilities make predicting the contests extraordinarily difficult this year. And we’ve not yet factored in other fallouts from the two sexist jerks on a bus video. Like Republican and Independent adult males, for example. It’s one thing, your Truthteller contends, when Humpty Trumpty spews his bigotry about immigrants and Latinos, and quite another when he brags about sexually assaulting our precious white girls and women. The notion he could have invaded the dressing rooms of naked teen beauty contestants for all those years he owned all those pageants is enough to turn any father’s or uncle’s or brother’s stomach. If anything, the men who heard that tape and now, these latest reports, may turn out to be even more opposed to him when they enter the polling booth than the women.

It’s no wonder, therefore, that the Trump brain trust has decided to adopt, as they put it, a “Scorched Earth” strategy. Since Trump has burned his last bridges with possible new supporters, Bannon and his Queen of MissMisDirection, Kellyanne Con, will now try and make Hillary Clinton stink of even more sexual perversity than their combed-over clown candidate. Their hope? To make so many Clinton supporters so angry at her that they’ll stay home on Election Day, thus enabling Trump to squeak through to a victory.

It won’t succeed. It will only serve to motivate parents of all persuasions and their adult kids to vote in even larger numbers than the Dems are now envisioning. No one wants their daughters, sisters, wives, and moms to be subjected to the tawdry remarks and insulting behavior represented by Donald Trump. The thought that such a girl-ogling, sexually sick monster could somehow be sitting next year in the Oval Office, pushing reactionary Supreme Court Justices, promoting anti-woman legislation, and helping Ryan and Company further degrade our rights, threaten our families, stick us and our children with new federal deficits as they cut taxes on the super rich will mobilize the progressive and independent voters in numbers unseen even by President Obama.

Spoiler alert — it’s going to get even uglier


Swing vote predictive tool update

With two full weeks (14 days) under its belt, the new model is stabilizing nicely. It clearly shows the evolving, highly dramatic shift in voter preferences toward Clinton in the twelve Battleground states. I want to incorporate the next two days of state inputs before explaining it here, so please be patient! It should be worth the wait, since Wednesday’s and Thursday’s polls will tell us more fully the real cost to Trump from his tape and his terrible 2nd debate performance.

Stench warfare

Amidst the media and Republican howling over Pussygate and the ancient alleged sexual crimes of the Clintons, it’s easy to become depressed. Does anyone really care about the true issues in this contest?

We know the media don’t, since they’re making millions from the sales of TV ads in these final, hottest, most disgusting weeks before November 8th. And Trump and his minions have never seriously discussed any plans for the country’s future. Why would they start now, when, except for a plan to make the wealthiest 1% even wealthier, they basically have no plans?

In contrast, Hillary’s campaign team has a comprehensive set of policies and plans on her web site. It’s up to voters to go read them. Some will say that she should be spending her huge television budget on promoting her plans, instead of relentlessly attacking Trump’s character, or rather, lack of it. In their eyes, the Clinton tactics serve mainly to make her out to be as “dirty” a candidate as he is.

I respectfully disagree: Trump’s messaging, delivered via his billions of dollars worth of free media time, is like an all-out missile barrage. The Clinton team has had no choice since June but to mobilize an airwaves defense strategy more extensive than any we’ve ever seen since modern media was invented after WW2. Had they failed to react to his onslaught of lies and insults with such focus and determination, he might well have successfully made the transition from clown candidate to change candidate.

To her team’s credit, they’ve been able to use Trump’s own verbal garbage as the main ammunition in their counterattack. Instead of getting bogged down in the turgid details of his lies and tirades, they’ve simply let the ads quote the windbag’s foul wind baggage.

Americans have gotten it. Even before the disgusting revelations of last Friday and Trump’s loutish behavior since, 50% of voters were determined never to vote for him.

This percentage will only go up from now through October. But we’re not finished, yet. His candidacy is dying, but still has enough rancid breath to rail against the truth, and enough die-hard supporters to try and trash our democracy as they descend into the cesspit of demagogic history.

Keeping our eye on the (Supreme) prize

All the sound and fury must not divert us from the major fundamentals of the contest:

  1. We must elect Clinton to ensure a progressive Supreme Court — without this, we’ll see none of the critically-needed changes involving women’s rights, civil rights, voting rights, marriage rights and campaign finance reform.
  2. We must take back the Senate to have any chance of implementing any part of the progressive agenda, beginning with aggressive action on mitigating climate change.
  3. We must take back the House to ensure that the full array of Clinton’s programs can be implemented.

The Election is not about electing Clinton, as wonderful a victory for women (and the rest of us) as that will be. The election is about defeating the Republican forces of legislative obstruction, and reversing the backward momentum forced upon us by the Tea Party and religious Conservatives.

Words shatter

Found in an email:

Humpty Trumpty was born to prevail,

at business, at building, no way he could fail.

No height in Manhattan Daddy’s wealth couldn’t scale,

and no female living the man couldn’t nail.


Humpty Trumpty could always get laid.

On models, on others, he endlessly preyed

He touched and he groped, hands wandering far,

“It’s OK, they love it! I’m rich! I’m a star!”


Humpty Trumpty rode on a bus,

cruising for women to abuse in his lust;

bragging of conquests, of his smooth gift of gab–

just show him a skirt; he knew where to grab.


Spying a victim, he quivered with heat.

“Quick! Gimme a Tic Tac! I need to smell sweet!

And no worries, sport, I’ve a license to grope.”

Which he really believed, the fat boorish dope.


Then he stepped off the bus in a hurry to meet

the young woman who waited, a celebrity treat.

Big smile, clever chatter, he began his routine;

he was sure she’d give in like some starry-eyed teen.


This was right, only fair, it was what he deserved.

But Oops! Oh no! He’s been stymied, unnerved!

In the midst of the hunt, he’d forgot he was wired.

Now he’s on the carpet, about to be fired!


Humpty Trumpty went on the TV

denying and lying: “Hey that was not me!”

But too many times the truth he’d denied;

“Dump the odious Trumpty!” his backers now cried.


And all of the spineless, those still on the fence,

from McConnell to Cruz, from Ryan to Pence,

all look down on the mess they’ve created,

staring at chaos, and voters’ rage, unabated.


Humpty Trumpty had buildings so tall,

but his power and wealth could not stop his great fall.

Now all the Koch forces, and all Ryan’s men,

can never put trumped-up Humpty together again.


With Truthteller’s best wishes for the good eggs, everywhere.

Your one-month-to-go reality check

With 31 days until November 8th, the numbers predicted here in various posts over the summer and early fall are basically looking good.

The National race

Clinton has re-established and reinforced her lead over the summer. Before the party Conventions she was leading by 5 points. After the Convention ups, downs, and bounces, including a stretch of self-inflicted wounds by Trump, and Clinton’s deplorable error, the two had seemingly fought each other to a 1 or two point difference. Then, just eleven days ago, she performed strikingly well in the first debate, while Trump was Trump, and about 50 million people saw him be the odious bully he is for the first time. Very bad. The result in the national polls has been a surge for Clinton, to a solid 6 to 7 point lead. Very bad, indeed, Mr. Twitbag.

The Battleground

In the thirteen (as we defined them months ago) 2016 Battleground States, Clinton is now putting serious distance between her and the business failure. Trump acknowledged as much late this week as he publicly gave up his much-touted Rust Belt strategy to focus in the remaining days on Arizona, Nevada, and Colorado. Yes, reader, you read correctly, and yes, it is a stupid strategy.

The Ground Game

On the ground, the Clinton Team has the Trump folks out-gunned by at least five to one in the Battleground states, no matter how you cut it. Typically, a well-run ground game in the final month can boost a candidate 1 or 2 percent in the national polls, and more in the swing states where the actual fighting takes place. No model reflects this added percentage for Clinton, but you may count on it showing up in the final tallies.

The Electoral Vote

The consensus among the quality forecasting sites says Clinton has over 330 EVs to Trump’s roughly 200. Not quite as ebullient as my much higher prediction in the pre-“deplorables” days, I’m happy to admit. But I still expect to see Clinton top 360 EVs or come very close.

The new Truthteller swing vote prediction model

As mentioned in a recent post, your wily Truthteller has taken on the problem unique to this 2016 Election, namely, two more or less equally distrusted candidates, two third parties with significant national followings, and a larger-than-normal contingent of undecided voters.

I’ll be posting on this project this weekend, so only provide the briefest update here, as a teaser. I was able to have the new model ready for testing the day of the first debate. Tracking aggregated Battleground state polls results each day since, the new model is working better than even I expected. It shows Clinton’s surging strength in a simple and clear way. It appears to show that her final vote tally in these key states will, in fact, be stronger than the conventional predictive tools conclude.

What lies ahead?

Leads after the debates tend to be stable, so it’s unlikely we’ll see Clinton fall back to less than a 5% lead in these final days. To the contrary, our model suggests she’ll grow her current 6 percent to as much as a consensus 8 or even 9 percent by Election Eve.

We can now be reasonably confident that Clinton will take all eleven of the traditional Battleground states, and has an even-money chance at taking Arizona. too. Georgia is going to be close, but my gut tells me the Clinton Team won’t be putting the time and money into the state to carry it. (This is a much more important question than all but a few realize: With its sixteen Electoral Votes, large educated white and growing minorities demographic, Georgia is on the verge of becoming the “Southern Ohio”. I’m arguing for the Dems to make an aggressive move now rather than later to make this a Progressive bedrock state for the future.)

Since five of the critically-close Senate seats are in the Battleground states, a strong win across the Battleground board could be just the push needed to win control of the Senate, by securing Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and New Hampshire. These wins would give the Dems and their Independent partners working control of the Senate. But the same Clinton surge in the final four weeks should mean victories in Illinois, Indiana, and Missouri, too, giving her a 53 seat majority. (Ohio is out of reach, as is Florida, barring a major push against Rubio.)

Adding even one or two percentage points to Clinton’s national totals on Election Day has a vitally important bonus effect: for each such added percent, the Dems should flip four to six additional House seats, even in such a polarized, Gerrymandered House as we have this year. The experts are currently expecting Clinton to flip at least fifteen of the 30 House seats she needs to take control in 2017 and throw out the Ryan/Tea Party partnership that has caused national gridlock these past six and more years.

But my model says Clinton may add a total of as much as three or even four points to her national percentage tally when all the votes are counted in November. That could mean flipping 16 or more additional House Seats. Hello Progressivism; goodbye obstructionism.

Team Clinton’s massive advantage in the ground game should play a powerful role in flipping the key six or seven Senate seats and also taking House seats away for the Republicans. “Down ballot” means nothing to Trump, since he never intended to actually govern. But it means volumes to Democrats who’ve had to watch the Obama agenda stymied by a Republican Congress determined to block any program to help the country.

So far as the Electoral College is concerned, if my predictions hold, and Clinton also takes Georgia and, just possibly, Mississippi, too, then she’d top 370 EVs, a crushing defeat for the right wing.

Takeaways for the most important election in U.S. History since 1932

We’ll know more of the details in the days following the second debate. But we know enough already to be confident of a significant Clinton win. What we do not know yet is the extent to which her success will also be a Progressive victory.

To be a truly meaningful, historically profound Progressive win will depend on how many House and Senate seats can be flipped. This number will determine Clinton’s ability to execute the comprehensive Progressive agenda she and Senator Sanders have put forth.

It is imperative therefore that every Progressive,Democratic, Independent patriot, and you Moderate Republicans, too, vote for the Democrat down ballot candidates in every state, not just the Battlegrounds.

Winning a state’s Electoral Votes decides who shall be President; winning the House and Senate seats decides which Presidents shall be great ones.

The most powerful man person woman in the world

As we await Trump’s likely humiliation in the second debate, I was anticipating a quiet week of quantitative analysis, perhaps with a meaty follow-up post on my current favorite topic, whence voteth the third partiers and undecideds come November 8th?  <Sigh>

Instead, along comes Trump’s number one advocate Rudy Guiliani, raging that Trump just has to be a better choice than a woman. Hey, as loathsome a remark as it is, at least he’s saying what he obviously really believes. His candidate Trump is incapable of such sincerity.

Anyway, thanks to Tweedledum and Tweedledummer, I have a chance to discuss something about the 2016 election the reader won’t find on TV, or in the formidable New York Times. Herewith, a tale that stretches back millions of years of cold, unsympathetic time.

Thanks to changes in the East African climate, five or six million years ago the main Homininae line of Great Apes split in two. One of the two evolutionary lines became the Chimpanzees and the other became the Humanzees. Both groups were violent, intensely territorial, and socially sophisticated. Both were essentially arboreal initially, but spent their waking hours on the ground — grooming, having sex, gathering food, killing small animals and occasionally, one another. Both were gathered into small, male-dominated tribal groups, with one male at the top of the tribal hierarchy, and the other males trying to dislodge him. As is still the case today for both groups of ‘Zees, the main motivator to be the local greatest ape was access to females for breeding and sex.

Both groups walked on all fours, but both stood up briefly to look for threats or reach food on bushes or the lower branches of trees. The two groups were thus hard to distinguish for a million or two years after the genetic split, but then, the various Humanzee derivative species gradually evolved a standing posture, while the chimps stayed in the ancestral mode of walking on all fours.

Both groups learned to make and use tools, but the Humanzees were able to make tools that became technologies — where the skill-sets of making and using were sharable and communicable outside one’s tribe. This in turn allowed a given technology like, say, throwing a sharp stick, to evolve independently of any particular Humanzee tribe.

Standing up freed our hands for new tasks, and therefore was the primary cause of our becoming the innovative ape. We needn’t go into the details of how and why. Suffice to say standing gave us enormous advantages as a species, including a half-million years of superior weapons development, a wide-ranging aggressive mobility, and a male-centered power culture where females were relegated to sexual service, child-rearing, gathering nuts and berries, and cooking the meat brought home by their owners. Progress, right? Yes, for the few strongest and smartest males in the clan. But the females and weaker males benefited, too. More meat and better security. Obey, and live essentially in slavery, but at least you’ll be fed and protected.

All these many eons, as we’re learning from behavioral genetics, the fundamental mammalian gender division persisted, under the command of our ancestors’ genes: males are for fighting; females are for f**cking.

The slow grind of technological development did not not lessen our genetically bestowed male sense of authority, only enhanced it. Technologies were continually refined and invented, especially those related to hunting, warfare, and mobile migration. Almost all of the technologies were developed by Humanzee males, since females were by and large excluded from knowing the secrets of hunting or military or economic power. No doubt a better way found by a woman for dressing animal skins was appreciated, but the technique did not kill anything, or stop another male from raiding the clan’s camp, so did not bring the inventor any real power.

As the last Ice Age was drawing to a close, clans of male-ruled Humanzee tribes fanned out from Africa and quickly came to dominate all habitable regions of the planet. One can be sure that most females alive through these tens of thousands of years of explosive migration and conquest were little more than chattel and sexual slaves to the male warriors.

Did females protest their, to our eyes, oppression? Sorry, fellow Progressives, but the answer is no. In fact, to the contrary, the slowly advancing diminution and suppression of females was reinforced in their own genetically-driven behavior, as they acquiesced to the conditions of male power. Those who failed to submit were doubtless sold or worse.

But then, about ten thousand years ago, the most recent Ice Age ended, and another round of climate change gave us agriculture. Our male-controlled social hierarchies were forced to adapt, and, cutting out the chase, led us to vastly different cultures. But in all these “neolithic” and later cultures over a dozen millennia, the males at the top continued to wield all political and economic power. As the size of dominated populations increased, the power elites developed authoritarian, male-worshiping religious mythologies and structures to extend their control of the ruled females and weaker males. “God’s” principal purpose was to police the minds and behavior of females, or to explain any inconvenient failures by the ruling elite. Females were, and, if we look honestly at the global numbers, largely still are treated as property in practice, if not in law.

Fast forward to the 20th Century, and the breakdown of the traditional male-dominated power structure in massive wars and revolutions. Only in the last six decades have we seen a tiny number of females advance to hold meaningful political power, and in this new century, a few more rise to head a few major corporations. The handful of females to hold national political power since WW2 have been, of necessity, strong figures. The gradual enfranchisement of females meant they had a chance to rise in their national political establishments, and these women had the will and the skill to exploit the occasional crack in the glass ceiling.

But not in the U.S.A.

The genetic inheritance all males (and females, too) share had been allowed to go unchallenged here, until women were granted the right to vote. Then, in the decades after 1950, American women began to benefit from their emerging participation in the workplace. Many entered politics, most of them indirectly, like Hillary Clinton, but a few as candidates. Much progress has been made. But in no case has a woman held consequential national power: even a Secretary of State acts only at the express direction of her President. Now, after nearly 40 years of relentless work in public service, Clinton has mounted a direct and powerful assault on the highest and thickest glass ceiling in our country. So? What makes her case special, as compared to the great women who achieved the top rung of their respective ladder in India, Europe, or, briefly, Australia?

The profound difference is this: none of these women held the ultimate power as the undisputed military leader of the world. Her accession as lead protector of the global community forces us to look ourselves and our ancestors in the mirror.

Her opponent is so odious and incompetent that many Republicans, along with pundits and TV baby anchors ask “If she’s so superior, why isn’t her lead in the polls much larger?”. Or they dwell on “Why is she still so heartily distrusted?”. Or they get mired in worries about her “stamina”, meaning of course her stamina as a frail female compared to a big, loud male bully. Clearly, Clinton faces an added burden of proof that she is qualified to be our next President. Why?

The answer, my friend, is flowing in our genes.

Americans have finally been forced to come face to face with history and socio-political evolution. We must choose to hand over the ultimate military and police authority to a female, and deep within us, our genetically dictated behavioral command center is utterly opposed to this insane notion. Like it or not, an objective reading of our antecedents and history warns us that a very substantial proportion of otherwise allegedly “civilized” males, and probably nearly as many females, simply cannot accept the fundamental idea that women are up to and deserving of the ultimate power on Earth.

This, not phony rage against the “establishment” or a private email server, is the deepest-seated reason for the success of a con-man and hate-merchant like Donald Trump. This frightening vision of unmanly forced submission by millions of ignorant male chauvinists to her authority as Head of State is what drives them to Trumpism. The resentment of her “uppity” challenge to righteous male authority is what drags so many of the women to rallies where she is excoriated and condemned.

The great majority of these Trump supporters are not truly “deplorable”; few are outright racists-in-action, as opposed to racist in reaction. One cannot label a dumb beast as deplorable. No, these folks simply failed to hear or heed the message: “You can behave according to a rational creed of justice, science, and reason, or to the obsolete biological dictates coursing through your cells.”

It’s apparent Giuliani missed the message, too; perhaps he was screaming something stupid at the time, or maybe he was being stopped-and-frisked for criminal ignorance.

Journalism strikes again

Thank you, New York Times

Once again, real journalism has come to the rescue of our messy, complex, obsolete voting system. This morning’s bombshell by the NY Times showing how Trump managed to avoid paying taxes on at least $916 million dollars in income may well move Trump’s refusal to show his tax returns from the back burner to its rightful position as the number two or three issue in this contest, just after the Supreme Court appointments threat, and Trump’s lack of emotional, intellectual, and civil fitness for the Oval Office.

Most Americans are reasonably tolerant, but when they learn that the Orange windbag has been living a life of extreme luxury and not paying a nickle for it for most of the past twenty years, they will realize we’ve been totally conned, and the repercussions for Trump’s fumbling candidacy will be devastating.

Mind, the hard-core Trump supporters, the roughly 15 million who have been in denial of his utter incompetence, callousness, and double-dealing past will overlook this, too. In fact, Giuliani and Christy have already labeled Trump’s ability to game the tax system sheer “genius”, since his tax-free billion dollar profit was completely legal, apparently.

But it’s not the legality or lack of it that will grate on Mr. and Ms. America — it’s the utter hypocrisy when Trump calls Washington rigged, after getting his, then proposes programs that will simply make the rigging even more to his and his cronies’ advantage.

Thanks to the diligence and professionalism of the New York Times, we now have a simple list of three compelling reasons not to vote for Trump, and, if one is a true patriot, to vote instead for Clinton:

  1. If elected, Trump will appoint Supreme Court Justices that would move our country backward instead of forward, in every aspect of our democracy such as women’s rights, civil rights, minority rights, voting rights, immigration, gun safety and regulation, and climate change mitigation.
  2. Trump is temperamentally, emotionally, and intellectually unfit to be President — he is mentally unstable, narcissistic, egoistic, and a pathological liar, with, it is now evident, a deep antipathy to strong women. He is his own best answer to the question “Whaddaya got to lose?!”
  3. Trump’s financial and business history show an utter contempt for anyone unfortunate enough to be holding something he wants — figuring out a way to convert nearly a billion dollars of losses he “earned” through bankruptcy proceedings to tax-free income is just the latest in a long list — those Republicans who insist we need a businessman in the White House need to find a real one, instead of a fraud who has not been endorsed by even one major CEO, or by even one Republican-backing major newspaper.

“October Surprises” redux

Here’s a comment I made on another blog yesterday, in a discussion about possible “October Surprises”. Since it concisely summarizes my “3PU” logic for Clinton’s win in November, I’m republishing it here for your consideration.

Not much point in us worrying about an October Surprise, so long as the Clinton team has made a list and pre-planned response strategies. I’m more interested in the November Surprise, when it turns out that the expected split of 3rd Party and undecideds is not 50/50, with half going to each candidate as in normal years.

We have fifteen percent 3rd partiers and undecided as of today. Count on as many as 4% hard-core 3rd party holdouts and stay-at-home refuseniks when all the votes are tallied.

The Surprise? From today through October and into the night of November 8th, expect to see from two thirds to 75% of the rest going to Clinton. What makes me so confident? Most of the present 3rd partiers went to them to avoid Trump or Clinton. Ditto the undecideds. Now they’re up against the threat of a thirty or forty year right-wing Supreme Court, and a twenty year backward march in civil, women’s, and minority rights. No way they’ll break 50/50 in the end.

Assuming 11% of the 15% turn out to vote, that means roughly 7 to 8 percent will be going to Clinton, added to her present 44 percent nationally, putting her well above 300EVs, and giving the Dems enough to seal the deal in at least six of the nine currently contested Senate seats.

Note that this doesn’t include the likely additional slippage in Trump’s totals through October, as he fails to connect with the real people in the town hall and viewers nationally in the second debate and — my guess — skips the third. Nor does it include his potential slippage as it sinks in to undecided and 3rd party voters that he’s not simply a racist misogynist, but a business fraud and tax law abuser.


We see today in our TT tracking model that during this past week Trump’s support fell in direct proportion to the increase in Libertarian support. Disgusted Republicans going to Johnson, for the moment, I suggest. In the same week we see Clinton support increasing as Green and undecided support decline. We’ll be watching these trends closely of course, but as of today, the behavior of the 3PUs seems to be playing out as predicted.

…And the winner is

Hillary Clinton, by a dominating margin. I’m speaking of last Monday’s debate, which she won roughly two-to-one over a collapsing Trump. His abysmal performance was the worst by any candidate in living memory.

As usually happens, the debate winner picks up momentum in the polls, and we see that happening now in both the national and key battleground state numbers. Huffington Post’s Pollster, the best of the poll averaging sites, shows she’s
back up to 4.5 points over Trump nationally. But readers know that the race will be decided in a few Battleground states, not the nation as a whole. Late yesterday we got our first look at Clinton’s post-debate position in five key swing states from Public Policy Polling. She’s moved back into the leads in all of them, most notably Florida and North Carolina, two Trump must-win states.

Many of us were confident Trump would not be an effective debater, but none could have foreseen his reversion to utter boorishness and confusion as his facade gradually slipped from the opening stages, began to crumble by the midway point, and totally disappeared by the final moments. He was at that point a quivering Orange mess, seething with barely-controlled rage.

It began with his dodging of questions on job creation. Then came his tax returns, and Clinton’s deft skill at making these into the issue they deserve to be. It went downhill from there. He was called out on his phony concession that President Obama was born in the U.S., and his refusal to answer the question why he pursued the Birther claims for five long years, when he was aware they were completely unfounded. When asked if he had anything to say to African-Americans, he firmly said “No”, and repeated it. Even a pro-Trump supporter heard the angry cry in a hundred ghettos across the land, and in some twenty million suburban households as well, very likely.

Already on the run, he reverted to his charge that Hillary doesn’t have the stamina to be President, doesn’t have a “Presidential look”, and doesn’t have the necessary (in his alternate-reality) “winning temperament”. He and his ratpack should count themselves lucky that she or the moderator did not at that point correct his poor understanding of English, and remind him that while there is no such thing as a “winning temperament”, there most definitely is a losing temperament.

Nearing the end, he had lost badly. But none of us could have imagined how he was about to self-destruct in the final minutes. Slapped in his puffy cheek with Clinton’s reminder of his misogyny, and her example of it, his public humiliation of Alicia Machado, his own Miss Universe pageant winner, Trump first tried to bully his way out of documented history, and, when Clinton was not intimidated, backed into his regular posture of petulant denial. Learning that the young woman, a struggling immigrant, had become a U.S. citizen, he gave up, crushed by not one woman, but two. Public humiliation in the eyes of 84 million-plus viewers. No Trump building was tall enough to escape his shame, no wall high enough to hide his weakness.

The Clinton team was understandably proud of her massive win, and the total success of the carefully laid Machado trap. They were even ready with a TV attack ad featuring Ms. Machado. It was at that moment simply a matter of waiting for the Friday and weekend polls to come in and see how well she had done.

There was absolutely no way they could have been prepared for what was to come.

The following morning, desperate to prove that his mega-fail the night before was simply a big lie put forth by the media under Clinton’s masterful direction, Trump attacked Ms. Machado on Fox News. Even his own supporters were caught flat-footed. How could he bring that terrible scene up, when he needed to get his message of tax-cuts for the rich and the horrors of inner-city neighborhoods back on track?

That was only the beginning of his descent into mindless rage this week. He simply would not, because, adolescent bully that he is, he could not let go. Clinton supporters and an estimated fifteen million undecided voters have now been treated to three full days of Trump’s winning temperament on full, shouted, incoherent display. Unlike the real and tragic one in Hoboken, his train wreck still dominates the news today.

Worse yet for the Trump cause, we’ve seen a massive surge in Latino interest in registering to vote after last Monday, in the key states of Florida, Texas, Arizona, and Nevada. Little did the self-centered Trump realize the nineteen year-old girl he’d publicly berated in 1996 had become a highly popular figure in the American Latino community.

And let’s be clear: the surge in Clinton’s numbers as of this morning do not reflect the additional voters who turn to her as a result of this latest round in the long-running Republican War on Women. By next Monday we’ll know better the damage he’s inflicted upon himself.

My guess is we’ll see Clinton’s well-organized advocates pushing hard on Machado and misogyny for at least another week, further disrupting Trump’s extremely shallow concentration as he vainly attempts to prep for the second Presidential debate a week from Sunday.

Would Clinton and her mighty surrogate team rather be talking about the goals she has for the country, and her well-considered plans to achieve them? Of course, especially since Trump has no plans except an economic plan that would bring about a recession while handing the richest 1% massive tax breaks. Trade? Trump’s “plan” is to try and get our trading partners to agree to new “deals” or risk the Donald bombing the s**t out of them.

Be sure that the Clinton team will continue to do their best to inform the voters on the pressing concerns and issues that confront the country. But the other side knows they dare not get into serious and complex issues when they must rely on a TV buffoon with the mind and emotional maturity of a fifth grader to explain the Republican position.

This is a sad state for our nation.

But sad or not, professionals and thoughtful citizens concerned with governing, economics, history, science, income distribution, education, public service, defense, foreign affairs, health care, climate change, civil rights, criminal justice, and women’s rights need to face the reality that Trump has created: this election will not be about issues, since only one side is prepared or willing to debate them.

Did I miss anything?

If you happened to be on vacation the past few days, or visiting your sick aunt in Sri Lanka, or doing, well, you know, real stuff, and you see the polls this morning and through the weekend, you may be wondering why we’ve gone from “the tightening” to “the rightening” in less than a week.

The quick answer is Trump and Clinton had a debate, he got thumped good, and then he spent the next few days trying to re-write the reality, only managing to confirm what the debate showed: he is totally unequipped to be President.

To get the complete answer one would need to hear the full ninety minutes. But there are dozens of web sites with the many highlights and lowlights. Incapable of answering a question, Trump tried to harangue, divert and lie his way through a thicket of issues. Ultimately he showed himself as the shallow, bombastic, threatening phony he is, even trying in vain to bully Clinton as she crushed him in exchange after exchange.

The people have decided that Clinton beat the windbag by an average of two to one, and now the polls are beginning to reflect that judgment. By Friday she should be leading again by about 5% nationally, and the most important Battleground states should be seeing her comfortably ahead. So much for the “tightening”.

The most important point

If you didn’t catch the debate, you missed what your Truthteller suggests is the single most important exchange. In the transcript of the debate, you’ll see that Trump boasted he’d earned $694 million last year. Here are his exact words:

“But you will learn more about Donald Trump by going down to the federal elections, where I filed a 104-page essentially financial statement of sorts, the forms that they have. It shows income — in fact, the income — I just looked today — the income is filed at $694 million for this past year, $694 million. If you would have told me I was going to make that 15 or 20 years ago, I would have been very surprised.”

Then during Clinton’s barrage re: his tax returns a few minutes later, he brags about not paying taxes. He actually says it’s smart. (He should say his tax lawyers and accountants are the smart ones, but Trump is incapable of admitting that.)

We can only hope the Clinton campaign will run ads asking the essential questions and exposing him for the greedy money-grubber Elizabeth Warren labels him. If I were writing copy for Clinton’s team here’s what the ad would say:

“Donald Trump brags that he pays no Federal taxes. He says it’s smart to screw the American people if he can legally get away with it. Just how smart? Last year he boasts that he earned $694 million. And he wont tell us how much he paid in Federal taxes, or how much he donated to charity. Was it zero? He takes in nearly 700 million, and manages to keep it all for himself by being “smart”? No wonder he doesn’t want you to see his tax returns. No wonder he wants to eliminate the Estate Tax. No wonder he wants to keep his business practices hidden, and keep all his hard-working supporters in the dark, too.”