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I’m predicting that the Democrats’ campaign that focuses on criticizing the Trump/GOP tax cuts is on its last legs. This article doesn’t do anything to change my opinion of that. Tuesday night on Shannon Bream’s show, Guy Benson debated Jehmu Greene about the Trump/GOP tax cuts. It wasn’t a fair fight.

Ms. Greene argued that Democrats had lost ground in the generic ballot polling because they didn’t stay on offense. That’s a foolish argument. Benson picked up on that immediately, saying that “Democrats don’t have a messaging problem. They’ve got a reality problem.” That’s what I’ve been saying on LFR since the tax cuts passed. I’ll question whether this is entirely a Nancy Pelosi problem, though. At this point, that’s true. This fall, though, Nancy Pelosi will just be the icing on a very right, tasty chocolate cake. The ‘cake’ itself is that the Democrats voted unanimously against the Trump/GOP tax cuts.

When Pelosi infamously referred to the bonuses as “crumbs”, didn’t everyone notice that Democrats immediately distanced themselves from Pelosi? Here’s the perfect illustration of the difference between crumbs and $1000 bonuses:

During the Benson-Greene debate, moderator Shannon Bream said that there’s sure to be lots of ebbs and flows left in this race. That’s true. What’s equally true is that the last month of the campaign is utterly predictable. Republicans will run ads nonstop highlighting the fact that every Democrat voted against the tax cuts. Imagine the narrator stating “Democrats voted against pay raises, big bonuses and better benefits” before switching to a middle class couple thanking Republicans for voting for the tax cuts before explaining how his bonus let them start saving for their daughter’s college education and how her raise is helping pay for a summer vacation. The ad would be finished by the GOP candidate saying “My opponent voted against you keeping more of your hard-earned money. I will fight for you, not the special interests.”


The reality is that Democrats are facing a difficult endgame situation. Like Benson said, the Democrats made their bed. Now they can sleep in it.

When Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced the indictments of 13 Russians and “3 Russian entities”, Rosenstein specifically said “There is no allegation in this indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is no allegation in this indictment that the charged conduct altered the outcome.”

Somewhere, Adam Schiff is likely crying in his beer.

The indictment itself specifically states that a company called “Internet Research Agency, LLC” was created in 2014, long before the presidential campaign started. Further, the indictment states that the Russians plan was a) sophisticated enough to fool American political activists that the activists thought they were dealing with other like-minded American activists. The Russians’ goal was to sow distrust.

On one day, Nov. 12, 2016, the defendants organized a rally in New York to “show your support for President-elect Donald Trump” while at the same time organizing a “Trump is NOT my president rally” that also was held in New York.

While this indictment doesn’t totally clear the Trump campaign, it’s definitely a defeat for the Democrats, especially Rep. Schiff. Schiff has invested tons of time in front of TV cameras insisting that he’d seen proof that Trump colluded with Russians.

This is the biggest news from the special counsel’s office thus far. Not only does it not accuse the Trump campaign of colluding with Russians, it states that people from Trump’s campaign “unwittingly” participated in the Russians’ plot:

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said the defendants created hundreds of accounts using fake personas on the social media platforms Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to advance their scheme. One example of that was the Twitter account “Tennessee GOP,” which used the handle @TEN_GOP,” and “which falsely claimed to be controlled by a U.S. state political party,” the indictment said. “Over time, the @TEN_GOP account attracted more than 100,000 online followers.”

The defendants also allegedly used a “computer infrastructure, based partly in the United States, to hide the Russian origin of their activities and to avoid detection” by US authorities, the indictment said.

It isn’t a stretch to think that this plot achieved its goal, which was to create distrust in our election.

What’s sad is that the MSM is totally content with sowing additional distrust with their ‘reporting’.

President Trump hasn’t been bashful in calling Nancy Pelosi the “Republicans’ secret weapon” in the 2018 election. Perhaps the President needs to rethink that opinion. It isn’t that Pelosi has quickly gotten popular. She’s still as unpopular as ants at a picnic. It’s that Chuck Schumer’s popularity has taken a significant dip recently.

The latest Quinnipiac University Poll “found that 53 percent of voters approve of the job the minority leader is doing in the Senate, while 35 percent do not approve. That is the lowest approval rating Schumer has received since 1999, just months after he was first elected to the U.S. Senate.”

Sen. Schumer is a major drag on battleground state Democrats. How many Democrat senators he’ll hurt remains to be seen but his decisions have already contributed to the Democrats’ vulnerable situation going into 2018. The #SchumerShutdown hurt immensely. The only thing that’s hurt Democrats more was unanimously rejecting the Trump/GOP tax cuts. As a result, Democrats should consider a net loss of less than 5 seats in the Senate a moral victory.

The latest Democrat mistake is rejecting President Trump’s immigration plan. The Common Sense Coalition’s plan isn’t serious about border security, which I explained in this post:

On Pg. 51 of the amendment, we learn that $1,571,000,000,000 is appropriated to build President Trump’s wall in 2018. Further, $2,500,000,000,000 is available to be appropriated in each year starting in 2019 and going through 2027. Further, the legislative language states that “the amount specified in subsection (d) for each of fiscal years 2019-2027 shall not be available for such fiscal year unless (A) the Secretary submits to Congress, not later than 60 days before the start of such fiscal year a report setting forth a description of every planned expenditure…, (B) a description of the total number of miles of security fencing… etc.

The money isn’t appropriated all at once, meaning that future congresses can stop the building of the wall. Don’t think President Trump won’t campaign against red state Democrats on that issue this fall. I’d bet the proverbial ranch that will be a major thorn in the Democrats’ sides.

Democrats shouldn’t think that they have political cover on this, either. Just because Jeff Flake, Lindsey Graham and Bob Corker signed onto the bill doesn’t provide cover. It simply means the American people reject them, saying a pox on all their houses. The American people want real border security. They aren’t interested in political gamesmanship, which is what the Collins-Durbin-Graham bill was. This video is misleading:

Just $1,571,000,000 is appropriated to build the wall. The rest of the money is promised but not appropriated. Sound familiar?

Democrats are playing a risky game. Don’t bet on it turning out well for them this fall.

UPDATE: This video exposes Democrats:

If Bob Corker decides to not retire and to run for the seat he currently holds, it wouldn’t be surprising if he’d get soundly defeated. According to “the latest survey from a group backing Blackburn, Senate Conservatives Fund, she led the senator 49 percent to 26 percent. Former Rep. Stephen Fincher garnered 9 percent.”

Corker’s career is essentially finished. Just “before he announced his retirement,” Corker feuded openly with President Trump, “referring to the White House as an adult daycare center.” That isn’t the way to win friends and positively influence people. In fact, it’s a way to permanently imperil a political career.

Much of this is created by DC. According to David Drucker’s reporting, “But Corker allies insist that Blackburn is more vulnerable than she appears and that the movement to recruit the senator into the race is deeper than it appears. (Republicans connected to leadership argue the effort is basically a creation of Corker; Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-TN, and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC. That trio of squishes should be squashed ASAP. I can tolerate Alexander but Corker and Graham are almost as worthless as Flake and McCain.

Replacing Corker with the candidate in this video will be a major upgrade:

Then there’s this:

“She is the best fundraiser in the country and is beating Phil Bredesen in several polls. We aren’t worried about these ego-driven, tired old men,” Blackburn campaign spokeswoman Andrea Bozek said.

I don’t have a vote in Tennessee’s primary but if I did, I’d vote for Marsha Blackburn. It’s time to get squishes like Bob Corker out of the Senate. It’s time to replace them with solutions-oriented people like Marsha Blackburn.

The Common Sense Coalition’s amendment is pretty much a bait-and-switch con job piece of legislation. For starters, amnesty for DACA recipients is immediate. That isn’t surprising. Next, building President Trump’s wall isn’t a priority. On Pg. 51 of the amendment, we learn that $1,571,000,000,000 is appropriated to build President Trump’s wall in 2018. Further, $2,500,000,000,000 is available to be appropriated in each year starting in 2019 and going through 2027. Further, the legislative language states that “the amount specified in subsection (d) for each of fiscal years 2019-2027 shall not be available for such fiscal year unless (A) the Secretary submits to Congress, not later than 60 days before the start of such fiscal year a report setting forth a description of every planned expenditure…, (B) a description of the total number of miles of security fencing… etc.

In other words, they’re limiting the speed with which the wall can be built. Further. they’re making it possible for future Democratic administrations to kill the building of the wall.

Simply put, this bill has no chance of getting 6o votes. It doesn’t stand a chance of getting signed into law, either. Here’s a picture of most of the members of the Common Sense Coalition:

It’s worth noting that a significant percentage of these senators are either retiring or will be defeated this fall. Sen. Donnelly fits that description. Jeff Flake definitely fits that description. Joe Manchin is inching closer to fitting that description. Heidi Heitkamp definitely fits that description. Claire McCaskill and Bill Nelson fit that description. The senators from New Hampshire don’t exactly fit the description but they’re getting there. Bob Corker fits that description.

Simply put, most of the senators in the Common Sense Coalition won’t be in the Senate a year from now. That doesn’t mean they don’t have the right to vote. That’s their right until their replacement is sworn in, either after their retirement or their defeat. What it means, though, is that members of the Coalition don’t care about national security. They certainly aren’t interested in listening to the people. Thus far, they haven’t listened to the people.

This coalition isn’t made up of principled politicians. It’s made up of elitists who aren’t interested in listening to the people. Chuck Grassley is the senior senator from Iowa. He isn’t part of that Coalition. He’s just a politician who’s interested in doing the right thing, both for DACA recipients and for national security. He’s the chief author of a bill that’s been endorsed by President Trump. It’s the only bill that the Senate will debate that President Trump will sign or should sign. Listen to Sen. Grassley’s speech explaining why senators should vote for his legislation:

The text of Sen. Grassley’s bill, known as the Secure and Succeed Act, is significantly different than the CSC’s legislation. The biggest difference between the 2 bills is that the Grassley bill appropriates the money for the wall right away. In the section titled “Subtitle C—Border Security Enforcement Fund” the following appropriations are made:

The Secretary shall transfer, 8 from the Fund to the “U.S. Customs and Border 9 Protection—Procurement, Construction and Improvements” account, for the purpose described in 11 subsection (a)(1), $18,000,000,000, of which— 12 (A) $1,571,000,000 shall be transferred in 13 fiscal year 2018; 14 (B) $1,600,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2019; 16 (C) $1,842,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2020; (D) $2,019,000,000 shall be transferred in 19 fiscal year 2021; (E) $2,237,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2022; (F) $1,745,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2023; 177 (G) $1,746,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2024; (H) $1,776,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2025; (I) $1,746,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2026; and (J) $1,718,000,000 shall be transferred in fiscal year 2027.

Barring an act of Congress, the money for President Trump’s wall will be appropriated this year.

The Common Sense Coalition’s bill appropriates approximately $1,700,000,000,000 this year, then requires separate appropriations in the years following to build the wall. The Grassley bill appropriates the money immediately.

It’s worth noting that Democrats have the proverbial gun pointed at their heads. If Democrats don’t agree to President Trump’s conditions, DACA collapses and the recipients hold Democrats responsible. Remember this?

The chances for a repeat of that scene is high if Democrats don’t deliver.

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When it comes to political wisdom, Lindsey Graham isn’t too bright. The NYTimes is quoting Sen. Graham as saying that “The president’s going to have a vote on his concept. I don’t think it will get 60 votes. The bottom line then is: What do you do next? You can do what we’ve done for the last 35 years — blame each other. Or you can actually start fixing the broken immigration system. If you came out of this with strong border security — the president getting his wall and the Dream Act population being taken care of, most Americans would applaud.”

Sen. Graham isn’t too bright if he thinks he’s on the winning side in this fight. Americans want a DACA fix as long as it comes with the wall and an end to chain migration. Each of those issues have approval ratings of 70%. If Sen. Graham thinks that President Trump is on the losing end of that fight, he isn’t too bright.

The American people understand that bad bipartisan deals are really just bad deals. They’ve seen DC pass bipartisan deals for years while things got worse. They’re upset with elitists in both parties. They’re demanding that these elitists do something different this time. It’s a revolutionary concept but it’s worked in the past. It’s called listening to the people. Don’t tell us that the things that the American people want done in their name is complicated.

It’s only complicated trying to explain why politicians ignored the will of the people. Then it gets real complicated — for the politician. That’s their problem.

Meanwhile, politicians in the “Common Sense Coalition” who are up for election this year better prepare to get their comeuppance in November. Watch Sen. Schumer’s speech, then ask yourself whether he’s bothered to listen to the American people:

After watching that speech, I’m left wondering whether Sen. Schumer thinks the American people are simply an inconvenient afterthought. Lost in his political spin is whether the bill the Common Sense Coalition is putting together is something that the American people would reject. Also lost in Sen. Schumer’s spin is whether the Common Sense Coalition’s bill would fix anything or whether it would just be another bipartisan bill that doesn’t do what the American people expect it to do.

Thanks to President Trump’s populism and his commitment to the American people, Democrats and wayward Republicans are finding out that resisting the American people isn’t a great way to earn a living in politics. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s speech summed things up perfectly:

My Democratic colleagues have spent months demanding the Senate take up this issue. They even shut down the government, unnecessarily, I might add, in order to secure this very week of debate. But now that the time has come to make law instead of just making points, they’re stalling.

Why? Why, after months and months spent demanding that the Senate take up this issue, do they now object to even starting the debate? Because they know, no matter how long they spend in closed-door negotiations, they can’t change the fact that the president has spelled out a fair and generous framework that will be necessary to earn his signature. They cannot take ‘yes’ for an answer. So, instead of moving to fulfill their promises and address the DACA issue, they haven’t even allowed the debate to begin.

It’s clear that Sen. McConnell listened to the people. He’s kept his promise. When he kept that promise, Democrats shut down debate. That’s the indisputable fact.

If Democrats want to face the American people after shutting down the government so they could debate immigration policies, then shut down debate when Sen. McConnell scheduled a week of debate on immigration/DACA, that’s their option. They shouldn’t be surprised if the people, including DACA activists, take brickbats after them when Democrats campaign on immigration/DACA.

Finally, I’d put together ads for each of the members of the Common Sense Coalition that starts with Republicans wanting to fix DACA and border security, then transitions into a frame where the narrator asks these immigration liberals which side of their mouth they want to talk out of.

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Sen. Schumer’s second shutdown is puzzling at best. Debate was supposed to start Tuesday on immigration reform. Sen. McConnell promised unlimited debate on the topic. Before the debate began, though, Sen. Schumer used the unanimous consent rule to prevent the debate from starting. Sen. Schumer, the senator that shut down the government to force a debate on DACA 2 weeks ago, has now shut down debate on DACA.

Sen. Schumer got his nose out of joint when Sen. Pat Toomey, (R-PA), introduced an amendment “that would withhold funding from so-called sanctuary cities that shield undocumented immigrants from federal law enforcement.” Sen. Schumer complained, saying the amendment “does absolutely nothing to address DACA, does absolutely nothing to address border security.”

Sen. McConnell agreed to a debate on immigration reform. He didn’t limit the debate to DACA. If Sen. Schumer doesn’t like that, tough. It’s time for Sen. Schumer to pull his big boy britches up. Acting like a whiny wimp because he didn’t get his way is what wimps do. If that’s the first reaction of a US senator, then it’s time to stop referring to Senate Democrats as being part of the world’s greatest deliberative body. It’s time to start thinking of them as crybabies.

Chuck Grassley’s speech puts things into proper perspective:

Why wouldn’t Sen. Schumer not welcome this debate? If he thinks that stripping funding from sanctuary cities is that unpopular, he should welcome that debate. Instead, Sen. Schumer apparently prefers protecting his vulnerable members from debating an issue that the overwhelming majority of Americans agree with.

Yet if the debate’s slow start is dispiriting for the hundreds of thousands of people whose lives could depend on its outcome, it’s not particularly surprising. “If you didn’t go into this debate realizing something like this was going to happen, you weren’t paying attention,” said Jim Manley, a veteran Senate aide who worked for Edward Kennedy and then for Harry Reid when the latter man served as majority leader. “I defy you to find worse debates in recent history than those over immigration. They are ugly, bloody debates chock-full of highly partisan social issues that seek only to divide and don’t bring anyone together.”

This isn’t about DACA recipients. It’s about Democrats playing political games. They don’t like it that President Trump and Sen. McConnell have called their bluff. Thanks to changing the dynamics of the debate, Republicans have put the Democrats in a difficult position to defend.

By opening up debate on all immigration-related matters, Sen. McConnell has put the Democrats into a position where they’ll have to debate all immigration-related issues. That’s the last thing that Sen. Schumer wants. Frankly, this should frighten vulnerable Democrats from red states.

Sen. McConnell couldn’t put Democrats in this pickle, though, without President Trump’s steadfast support:

But if the Democrats want to make a deal, it’s really up to them, because we want really tremendous border security, but we have to have Democrat support for DACA, and they are starting that process today. We didn’t want to have it in the big budget, because if we have it in the big budget, it’s going to get mixed up with all of the other things.

So now we have our military taken care of, and now we start very serious DACA talks today. And we are — I can tell you, speaking for the Republican Party, we would love to do DACA. We would love to get it done. We want border security and the other elements that you know about. Chain migration, you know about. The visa lottery, you know about. But we think there’s a good chance of getting DACA done if the Democrats are serious and they actually want to do it.

But they didn’t want tax cuts. They fought — we didn’t get one vote for massive tax cuts that have turned out to be unbelievably popular. And what came up — which was even a surprise to us — were, the big companies stepped up, and millions and millions of people have gotten tremendous bonuses. Nobody knew that was going to happen. That was a — that was just the beginning point.

The Democrats say that they want a DACA fix. If that’s true, it’s time they stepped up and provided votes to fix the problem permanently. If Democrats hide behind Sen. Schumer’s skirt, that’s their problem.

Democrats will be known for participating in Sen. Schumer’s second shutdown.

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This Reuters article reports that “Senate Democrats said they had identified more than two dozen buyback programs announced since Jan. 5 by banking, energy, manufacturing, retailing and other companies.” It continues, saying “The buybacks show that the first priority of corporations is to use their windfall from the tax overhaul to ‘line the pockets of powerful senior executives and shareholders,’ said Senator Ron Wyden, the senior Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee.”

My question to Sen. Wyden is simple: so what? After all, the money put into buyback programs doesn’t negate the benefits that employees have received through bonuses, pay raises and improved benefits. That’s what makes this statement so interesting:

The new tax law and its impact on workers and the wealthy are likely to play a major role in this year’s congressional mid-term election campaign, which will determine whether Republicans maintain their control of the Senate and House of Representatives.

That ship has sailed. Before the tax cuts were passed, Democrats held a 15 point lead in the generic ballot question in Monmouth’s monthly poll. In their first poll after the tax cuts passed, Democrats held a 2 point advantage.

The new tax law and its impact on workers and the wealthy are likely to play a major role in this year’s congressional mid-term election campaign, which will determine whether Republicans maintain their control of the Senate and House of Representatives. “The American people deserve an honest accounting of how this tax law is working,” he told reporters.

Knock yourself out, Sen. Wyden. Millions of people have benefitted from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Millions of people got bonuses. Tens of millions receive more money in their paychecks as a result of lower marginal rates.

The other thing Democrats haven’t admitted is that the economy is much stronger than it was during the Obama years. They don’t care whether that’s the result of the tax cuts or if it’s the result of other policy changes. They’re just thankful the economy is stronger and wages are increasing.

It’s worth noting that Sen. Wyden is the idiot that criticized the tax cuts, saying that “There is no magical growth fairy”:

Apparently, the growth fairy union didn’t get Sen. Wyden’s memo. The economy is strong and strengthening. Sen. Wyden’s hatred of the Trump/GOP tax cuts have blinded him to the benefits people are experiencing.

Andy Puzder’s WSJ op-ed questions whether President Obama should take credit for the Trump Bump. In his op-ed, Puzder wrote “In 2010 the Obama White House forecast gross domestic product growth would ‘accelerate in 2011 to 3.8%’ and ‘exceed 4% per year in 2012-2014,’ consistent with the 4.3% growth rate in the other 10 recoveries since World War II. That never happened. Actual post-recession growth averaged an anemic 2.1%. And Mr. Obama’s last year in office saw measly 1.5% GDP growth—hardly the springboard to our current expansion.”

While Mr. Puzder’s GDP figures tell the story that economic growth during the Obama administration was anemic, that’s only part of the story. Besides tepid economic growth during the Obama administration, another hallmark of the administration’s economic record was wage stagnation. It’s difficult to argue that the wage increases that we’re seeing now are because of President Obama’s policies. Simply put, wages didn’t start increasing until after the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed and long after the Trump administration cut regulations.

Further, the fact that the administration said that GDP “growth would ‘accelerate in 2011 to 3.8%’ and ‘exceed 4% per year in 2012-2014′” indicates that these figures were either made up or that the forecasters were utterly incompetent. At this point, I’m leaning towards the figures were made up.

Austan Goolsbee has called Mr. Trump’s growth goals unrealistic. In May Larry Summers declared that accepting the Trump administration’s forecast of 3% GDP growth was like believing “in tooth fairies.”

Call me foolish but I think that 3% GDP has nothing to do with tooth fairies. It just requires the right policies. This is what happens when the right policies are put in place:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of people working full time increased by 2.4 million in 2017, compared with only 1.6 million in 2016. In other words, the overall number of jobs added was lower in 2017, but only because hundreds of thousands of people left part-time for full-time jobs.

Wages are up, too. The CEOs that are announcing these wage increases are attributing them directly to the Trump tax cuts. How can the Obama administration take credit to wage increases that happened because of a tax bill that President Obama hates?

Finally, there’s this information:

Both 2016 and 2017 set some year-end records. In 2016, BLS recorded the highest number of people working part time at year’s end since it began recording the data in 1968. In 2017, it recorded the highest number of people working full time at year’s end since 1968 and the fewest working part-time since 2011.

The good news is that President Trump’s policies are working beautifully. He’s unleashed the economy’s animal spirits. Don’t take my word on that. Just ask Art Laffer:

This afternoon, Hogan Gidley, the deputy White House press secretary, was interviewed by Harris Faulkner. During the interview, Gidley expressed his displeasure with the McCain-Coons ‘compromise’ immigration bill. Gidley expressed his disgust by saying “I have to give it to Senators Coons and McCain. Congratulations because it takes a special kind of person to write a bill that’s worse than Graham-Durbin. They did it. It is incredible. You have to have a border wall in the security package. The president has been very clear about this. You have to end chain migration. You have to end the visa lottery. Absolutely, the president wants to fix DACA but let’s be clear. Not having a border wall is the same thing as Sen. McCain going to bed at night and locking his front door but leaving all of his windows open.

How stupid do these senators think President Trump is? They must think he’s the worst negotiator in the history of the republic. That bill won’t fly. It won’t get to President Trump’s desk.

Earlier in the program, Faulkner played a clip of a Democrat talking about how he was part of a group of 50 Republicans and Democrats who had come up with a bipartisan bill that didn’t include funding for a border wall. The Democrat, whose name I can’t remember, said that immigration legislation had to start with a bipartisan bill or it didn’t have a chance in the House or Senate. What BS. Just because a bill has bipartisan support doesn’t mean it fixes the problem.

Legislation that doesn’t fix border security issues is a non-starter with President Trump. No amount of bipartisanship happy talk will get it past President Trump’s veto.

It’s time the Senate woke up and realized that President Trump holds the cards in this fight. Senate liberals, including McCain, Graham and Flake, are like Sen. Schumer in that they’re playing a terrible hand badly. If they don’t do a 180, they’ll get thrown around like a rag doll.