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The political tide is turning. It’s unmistakable. It isn’t that Democrats can’t get their message out, which is their cop-out explanation for why they fell short of their goals. It’s that they’ve become the lecturing party or the ideological party rather than being the listening party or the solutions party.

Tammy Bruce’s op-ed highlights the Democrats’ tactics. In her op-ed, Ms. Bruce said “For a long time, the Democrats have been successful by scaring people into voting for them. It’s a tactic used when you can’t persuade people on policy. Americans were recently reminded of the Democrats’ usual refrain when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi declared President Trump’s tax cuts as ‘Armageddon.’ Mrs. Pelosi went there, relying on contrived drama, comparing a tax cut to a fight between biblical armies during the end times. When the Senate GOP was discussing Mr. Trump’s health care bill, the Democrats’ response? ‘Hundreds of thousands of people will die,’ delivered again by Nancy ‘We’re all gonna die’ Pelosi.”

In late October, 2017, Democrats thought that they were looking at a blue wave. That’s before Republicans passed the Trump/GOP tax cuts and President Trump signed them into law right before Christmas. Since then, the trend has been unmistakable. While there’ve been a few bumps in the road for Republicans, the RCP average of polling of the generic ballot question has headed in the Republicans’ favor:

Speaking of messaging, the Republicans’ message has consisted of telling people about the strengthening economy, fatter paychecks and greater financial security. The Democrats’ message, compliments of Ms. Pelosi, has sounded like fingernails across a chalkboard.

The Democrats aren’t ready for primetime. They’ve pandered to Moms Demand Action rather than putting forward plans to make schools safer. They’ve pandered to La Raza rather than getting criminal illegal aliens off the street. Meanwhile, Nancy Pelosi has talked in apocalyptic terms to frighten people to vote for Democrats:

Keith Ellison, the deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee, was handed the Grim Reaper baton when he said this to the Progressive National Candidate Training gathering last week: “Women are dying because we are losing elections,” Mr. Ellison said, Fox News Insider reported. “We don’t have the right to lose a damn election. We have to win.” Mr. Ellison was referring to a reported rise in maternal mortality rates in Missouri and Texas. The good news is, for Texas, that report has already been disproven, and explained by a computer reporting error.

And what is their argument really based on? The infantilizing of women. Underscoring Mr. Ellison’s remarks is an argument that women are so fragile, so vulnerable, that if Democrats don’t win and government doesn’t control more of your life, you’ll die. That is an inherently sexist argument, promoting the fraud that women can’t control their own lives and need a Big Brother to help them along.

Back in January, I wrote this post, which I titled “2018: No wave, barely a ripple?” At the time, I wasn’t sure if the trend towards Republicans would continue. If I wrote that article today, I’d omit the question mark from the title. The blue wave propaganda is coming from people like Chris Cillizza and other mindless lefties. The polling is clear. Nobody thinks that the improving economy and fat bonuses isn’t changing the mindset of the American people.

The DC/NY worrywarts should take a valium. The Trump/GOP tax cuts virtually sell themselves. Republicans still have to get out the vote but the policy sells itself. There’s a lesson I learned from a small business near my house. It’s legendary, actually. It’s called Val’s Rapidserv. They’ve been in business for 50+ years. I might be wrong on this but I don’t remember ever hearing a radio ad for them, most likely because their word-of-mouth advertising is exceptional.

This morning, I spoke with a person who owned a business right by Val’s. This entrepreneur told me that they “piggyback off of Val’s”, telling callers that they’re right next to Val’s.

The point is this: Val’s has 100% name recognition and the best fries in Minnesota. This translates to politics. If you’ve got a great reputation and a fantastic product to sell, you’ll win if you work hard. That’s where Republicans are at right now.

I wish I could say I was surprised by David Fitzsimmons’ campaign finance reporting tactics. Unfortunately, I’m anything but surprised. While some might criticize John Kern’s LTE highlighting the Emmer campaign’s tactics, I won’t follow suit. This isn’t that dissimilar to how big corporations use a plethora of regulations against small business competitors to reduce competition as much as possible.

John Kern opened the LTE, writing “In July 2016, Congressman Tom Emmer’s chief of staff David Fitzsimmons and GOP delegate Matt Stevens filed multiple Federal Election Commission complaints against me, the AJ Kern for Congress campaign and a private citizen. These frivolous complaints accused me of filing quarterly reports late and apparently attempting to gain undue influence with my wife by exceeding personal campaign contribution limits from our shared assets. Eighteen months later, presidentially appointed FEC commissioners voted 5-0 to dismiss.”

That’s the predictable outcome of these FEC complaints. Rep. Emmer knew he was underperforming at the time. According to Minnesota’s Secretary of State’s website, Emmer, the incumbent, won the primary with a pathetic 68% of the vote. That’s pathetic considering the fact that Emmer “out-fundraised AJ Kern’s 2016 campaign” by a 61-1 margin.

Emmer won’t win by overwhelming margins because he’s ignored his constituents on key issues. Specifically, he’s agreed with the Obama administration lock, stock and barrel on the Refugee Resettlement Program. When questioned by constituents if he’d push for a moratorium of the program, Emmer replied “That isn’t happening.” (I know because I attended that townhall at the Ace Bar on July 1, 2015. That’s also the night Kate Steinle was murdered.) After that meeting, AJ Kern told attendees that she was thinking about challenging Emmer. Here’s the explanation for why Emmer didn’t support his constituents:

President Trump has frequently criticized “the Swamp.” Regulations implemented by the Swamp have a chilling effect on both speech and competition. The truth is that Emmer is part of DC’s Swamp. Bradley Smith, the former Commissioner of the FEC, is one of the fiercest champions of free speech. Here’s what he’s stated on the record:

Charges and litigation are used to harass opposing candidates and make political hay with the press… used most effectively by ‘incumbents’. Many, if not most, of these cases end up being dismissed, but not without distracting the campaigns and using up their resources. …The problem in campaign finance is that unethical politicians are threatening private actors, rather than that unethical special interests are threatening government.

When John McCain and Russ Feingold wrote the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, aka McCain-Feingold, grassroots activists criticized it by nicknaming it the ‘Incumbents’ Protection Act’. That’s exactly right. BCRA didn’t eliminate corruption. It codified corruption by burying challengers under mountains of paperwork. That’s what its intent was.

While career politicians might want to fight the hordes of uppity peasants insisting on being heard, those career politicians won’t silence the activists’ voices.

Emmer can take that to the bank.

Per tradition, the DFL issued this statement after delegates endorsed Angie Craig to run against Republican incumbent Jason Lewis. The statement was the usual milquetoast boilerplate, saying “Angie Craig embodies the American Dream. She went from a mobile home park to a leader at Minnesota manufacturer St. Jude Medical. She will fight to ensure every Minnesotan has the opportunities she did by fighting for good-paying jobs, affordable healthcare for all, and real middle-class tax reform.”

All the statements in the world, though, won’t take away the major mistake that Ms. Craig made last week. Last week, Ms. Craig bragged that she wants to team up with Keith Ellison on health care. It’s worth noting that Rep. Ellison “took the reins of single-payer healthcare legislation in the House” last month. After making a major mistake on health care the last time she ran, Ms. Craig apparently didn’t learn.

I’m not the expert on CD-2 that others are but it’s difficult to believe that there are many John Kline voters that’d support a candidate that wants to implement a single-payer health care system. This snippet will hurt Ms. Craig this fall:

While I won’t predict a lop-sided victory for Jason Lewis, I can’t picture him winning by less than 6-8 points. The DFL recently has talked about health care being a major issue this fall. To the extent that it’s an issue, it won’t hurt Republicans as much as it’ll hurt the DFL.

Ladies and gentlemen, Tina Smith gave us proof that she’s a typical Metrocrat when she was interviewed by Almanac’s Eric Eskola and Cathy Wurzer. During the interview, Cathy Wurzer asked Smith if she thought the Senate was close to a DACA deal. Sen. Smith replied that she thought there was a good chance of senators coming together on a deal on DACA. Then Eskola essentially asked why Democrats weren’t willing to trade funding for President Trump’s wall for protection of DACA-protected illegals.

That’s when Sen. Smith said “Well, you know the wall is just a dumb idea. To try to pay for a big wall is just — most people don’t think it’s a good idea. At the same time, we have to have really strong border security and so I hope that a compromise can be reached that makes sense so that we can have strong border security.” Eskola jumped in, saying “That’s a compromise — wall- DACA”. Sen. Smith then countered, saying “I don’t think a wall is — I think a wall is — what? $18,000,000,000? I think we need to focus on border security and not the idea of tons and tons of cement, which doesn’t really work.”

There’s reason to question Sen. Smith’s commitment to border security. She recently participated in a DACA rally that featured her and Keith Ellison.

At the rally, Smith told the crowd of about 200 people “Minnesota Dreamers are American in every way except their immigration status. They work hard to improve our communities and to make our state better, not just for themselves and their families but for all of us. So the notion that we would turn our backs on Dreamers now … it’s just disgraceful.”

In other words, Sen. Smith thinks that there’s no problem admitting lots of illegal immigrants into Minnesota. On Almanac, Smith talked repeatedly about needing to secure the border. At this rally, Smith talked about how DREAMers were “American in every way except their immigration status.”

Which is it, Sen. Smith? If DREAMers are “American in every way except their immigration status”, why do we need tight security at the border? If we need tight security on the border, how can DREAMers be “American in every way except their immigration status”? It’s apparent that Sen. Smith is already adept at talking out of both sides of her mouth.

Smith’s interview is the first segment of Friday night’s show:

It’s understatement to say that it didn’t help improve her trustworthy rating.

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It isn’t surprising that Keith Ellison, Louis Farrakhan’s first congressman, isn’t hiding the fact that he supports Antifa’s violent tactics. He’s had a history of supporting violence, including appearing at a fundraiser for Sara Jane Olson, who is described as “a member of the self-styled revolutionary group the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA), which is best known for kidnapping heiress Patricia Hearst. Olson was apprehended in 1999 in relation to the 1975 attempted bombings of two police cars and the slaying of Myrna Opsah during a bank robbery.”

Later, “Ellison also spoke favorably of convicted cop killer Assata Shakur and expressed his opposition to any attempt to extradite her to the United States from Cuba, where she had fled after escaping prison. ‘I am praying that Castro does not get to the point where he has to really barter with these guys over here because they’re going to get Assata Shakur, they’re going to get a whole lot of other people,’ Ellison said at the event, which also included a silent auction and speech by former Weather Underground leader Bernardine Dohrn. ‘I hope the Cuban people can stick to it, because the freedom of some good decent people depends on it.'”

The book Rep. Ellison endorsed is titled “Antifa: The anti-fascist handbook.” It’s written by Mark Bray.

Bray has not shied away from the violent side of Antifa. In an interview with Melville House following the release of his book, Bray praised the violent tactics of Antifa, admitting the group will “pressure venues to cancel their events, organize self-defense trainings, and physically confront the far right when necessary.” Bray also admitted that property destruction is a “part of the anti-fascist and more broadly revolutionary repertoire.”

Doesn’t that sound a lot like fascism?

a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.

Forgive me if I can’t tell the difference between Antifa and fascism.

According to this Washington Examiner article, Mark Dayton intends on picking Tina Flint-Smith to serve out the remainder of Sen. Franken’s term.

I don’t see that happening because it’s a risky move. If he picks his lieutenant governor to replace Sen. Franken, the President of the Senate would become his lieutenant governor for what’s left of Gov. Dayton’s term. The President of the Senate is Michelle Fischbach, a Republican from Paynesville. That’s a totally safe district for Republicans so there’s virtually no chance for the DFL to flip that Senate seat.

The downside of having a Republican as the lieutenant governor for a DFL governor is that she’d be privy to Gov. Dayton’s decisions. Theoretically, it’s possible for the lieutenant governor to leak sensitive information to the Republicans. And once she’s sworn in, there’s no firing her.

A special election would follow for voters to pick someone to serve for the remainder of Franken’s term, which ends in January 2021.

Another reason why I don’t think it’s likely Flint-Smith will be Gov. Dayton’s pick is because Flint-Smith opted to not run for governor this time.

According to this article, if Gov. Dayton picked her, she’d likely be a caretaker senator:

If he taps Smith as a caretaker senator, Dayton would be giving the job to someone who apparently has no further political ambitions. Smith was Dayton’s chief of staff in his first term, after which he chose her as his second-term running mate. She had previously decided not to run for governor to replace him.

The article names potential DFL candidates, too:

Meanwhile, a variety of party big names would likely consider running for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Franken: U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, who would be the state’s first black senator; two other U.S. representatives, Rep. Betty McCollum and Rep. Rick Nolan; or state Rep. Ilhan Omar, who would become the Senate’s first Somali-American member.

Republicans couldn’t get lucky enough to run against Ellison or Omar. They’ve got more baggage than a DC-10. They’d be fortunate to win 10% of the rural vote. Ditto with Betty McCollum. On the GOP side, people are talking about whether Tim Pawlenty or Norm Coleman would run. I don’t see either of them running, though I could picture Stewart Mills running.

The DFL will have quite the tightrope to walk during the midterms. While state legislators from both parties have resigned because they sexually harassed women, the DFL has the problem of explaining why they’re attacking Leeann Tweeden because she was once a swimsuit model. Ms. Tweeden was recently criticized in an LTE in the Duluth News Tribune, which I wrote about in this post. The LTE simply said “In response to the compromising photo of U.S. Sen. Al Franken, internet-aware readers can become a bit more informed about Franken’s ‘victim’ by Googling her and clicking on ‘images.’”

In other words, the liberal who wrote this LTE is saying that Ms. Tweeden shouldn’t be trusted because she’s looked sexy while wearing bikinis. It’s almost as if the person who wrote this LTE was saying that Ms. Tweeden had it coming because she wore sexy clothing. Only Neanderthals think like that.

Keith Ellison’s reaction is more than a bit bizarre. Ellison said “It must have taken her tremendous courage? to make this kind of statement. I’m saddened by it. But, you know, we now live in a time that, thankfully, women can feel safe to come forward and talk about what happened to them. … It’s painful when it’s a dear friend, somebody you admire and has been great to you — and Al has been all those things to me. I admire him tremendously. But that doesn’t mean that this kind of thing is OK.”

What’s to admire about Sen. Franken? First, he’s a pervert with a nasty temper. Next, he hasn’t owned up to the nastiest part of his attack on Ms. Tweeden, which is his ‘kiss rehearsal’, where he stuck his tongue into her mouth. Third, he isn’t that bright, especially for being a sitting US Senator.

Most importantly, it took great courage for Ms. Tweeden to come forward because the DFL attack machine is questioning her because she’s a patriot who’s appeared on Sean Hannity’s show from time to time. That picture of Franken groping her says everything about Franken’s lack of character. Isn’t it time for the DFL to stop rationalizing their politicians’ unforgivable behavior?

Hillary attacked the women her husband assaulted in her quest to become the first female president. Hillary wasn’t a woman’s champion. Hillary was an attacker of women because they stood in her way to the White House. Political power drove Hillary’s attacks. She didn’t care whether she destroyed Kathleen Willey, Juanita Broaddrick, Jennifer Flowers or Paula Jones.

Finally, the DFL’s Franken problem isn’t inconsequential because he isn’t fessing up to what’s happened. Saying that he doesn’t remember the kiss doesn’t ring true. Ms. Tweeden said that she nicknamed Franken “Fish Lips” after the incident. It’s impossible to believe that a thin-skinned politician like Sen. Franken could’ve forgotten that. Further, Sen. Franken hasn’t said that it didn’t happen. He said that he didn’t remember it the way Ms. Tweeden remembers it. That’s what a non-denial denial sounds like.

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Keith Ellison’s strained logic just got him in trouble again. This time, Ellison compared DACA-protected illegal immigrants to Jewish victims in Nazi Germany. Before going totally off the deep end, Ellison started off by saying “heard today as many as 3 million DACA recipients live with someone who is a citizen of the United States. Add that to the people who work with DACA recipients. Add that to the people who are the parents of a DACA recipients. Add that to people who are parents to America citizens. You are literally talking about over 100 million Americans who are in some way—way more than 100 million, maybe well over that—who are deeply connected to people who have immigrated to the United States, some with official papers some with not. So this is not someone else’s fight. This is all our fight, but some are in the bull’s-eye, and others of us are not exactly the target. Therefore, it is our responsibility to stand up and fight and do the right thing.”

Had he stopped there, he might’ve been alright. He would’ve gotten criticized for his logic (or lack thereof) but he wouldn’t have gotten criticized like he’s getting criticized right now. That’s because Ellison continued, saying “I’m going to tell you right now, I’m one of the people who believe we should give our neighbors sanctuary. And if you ask yourself what I would do if I were a Gentile in 1941, if my Jewish neighbors were under attack by the—by—by the Nazis? Would I give them sanctuary? You might be about to find out what you would do. Will you pass that moral test or will you fail it?”

Ellison’s moral relativism is frightening. German Jews were just that — Jews who had been living in Germany for generations. How is that even slightly like Mexicans and OTMs who came illegally into the United States? Keith Ellison’s comparison is offensive. Illegal immigrants getting deported isn’t even slightly like Jewish victims sentenced to death chambers like Auschwitz, Dachau, Treblinka, Sobibór, and Be??ec. To suggest otherwise is foolish.

The first part of this video is pretty contrived but it isn’t offensive like Ellison’s comparison of DACA-protected illegal immigrants to Holocaust victims. Still, it’s worth examining. First, there are reportedly 800,000 DACA recipients, not 3,000,000. Further, why should anyone think that people harboring illegal immigrants are worthy of sympathy?

This is Ellison’s first extended time on the big stage. Prior to this, he was just a back-bencher with a shtick. Now that the spotlight’s on him, we’re finding out that he’s months away from being ready for primetime. It isn’t unreasonable to think that he’ll never be ready for primetime.

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I can’t say that I’m surprised that Keith Ellison has blocked me on Twitter. He talks trash but he doesn’t back it up. This evening, Rep. Ellison tweeted “Rep. Keith Ellison If you want to raise wages, then you must rebuild the Labor Movement. No two ways about it.” Of course, he didn’t explain how he’d rebuild the labor movement without actually building things.

Rep. Ellison, why doesn’t the DFL support replacing the Enbridge Line 3 Pipeline? Nationally, Democrats talk all the time about infrastructure projects. In Minnesota, the DFL constantly talks about the Bonding Bill as their jobs bill. The DFL is fantastic at building museums, arenas and civic centers. Their record is awful at building (or replacing) critical infrastructure that makes farmers’ lives easier.

The biggest point of this is to highlight the fact that Democrats, both locally and nationally, aren’t interested in rebuilding our nation’s (and our state’s) infrastructure if it has anything to do with improving people’s lives. When’s the last time we heard main street say that a new museum or civic center made their life better or had a multiplier effect on the economy? When’s the last time a new hockey arena created hundreds of long-term jobs that paid middle class wages? Sure, the cronies running those arenas make money but does anyone else get paid solid middle class wages?

This is the Democrats’ infrastructure plan:

The plan would provide billions of dollars in funding for road, bridge and sewer improvements, expanded broadband internet access in rural areas, railroad repair, public school construction and expanded port and waterway infrastructure. It includes a $200 billion “vital infrastructure fund” that would finance major projects such as rail lines and tunnels connecting New York City and New Jersey.

Noticeably missing are pipelines and refineries.

Here’s hoping that Democrats take Al Hunt’s article seriously. The title of Hunt’s article is “Democrats Need a Message, Not a Program.” It starts by saying “Democrats are in terrible shape. Republicans control all three branches of government in Washington, 34 of 50 governorships, and 68 of the 99 state legislatures. As they plot a comeback, Democrats have one obvious asset: the reckless presidency of Donald Trump. That’s not enough to close such a huge gap. And the battles that have started to rage inside the party over policies to promote and strategies to pursue are mostly missing the point.”

Thanks for the pep talk, Al. There’s nothing that’ll get a crowd excited faster than telling people they’re failing miserably. Hunt went wrong when he said “Most other political-party comebacks also were marked not by some innovative policy agenda but by connective messages and powerful personalities like Bill Clinton, Barack Obama and Trump. It’s not about ideology or 17-point policy prescriptions.” Hunt is partially right in that political comebacks require a powerful personality to lead them. He’s wrong, though, in saying that it isn’t about ideology or policies.

President Trump won the presidency because he connected on policies with coal miners and other blue collar workers in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan and, to a lesser extent, Wisconsin. Winning those states had everything to do with the policies Trump advocated.

Most other political-party comebacks also were marked not by some innovative policy agenda but by connective messages and powerful personalities like Bill Clinton, Barack Obama and Trump. It’s not about ideology or 17-point policy prescriptions. State governments also often serve as farm clubs to develop candidates for higher office and national prominence. Before they start quarreling about policy papers, Democrats need to restock their Triple-A teams.

After 8 years of getting pounded at the local level, Democrats don’t just need their Triple-A rosters. It’s that they need to stock their Double-A teams, too, because they’re depleted. It doesn’t help to have this politician as one of the chief faces of the Democratic Party:

With messengers like Keith Ellison, why would anyone think that the Democratic Party is a legitimate political party?

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