Where We Are After South Carolina

 

After taking a weekend to collect my thoughts and give myself a pat on the back about the effects of Nikki Haley’s endorsement of Rubio getting him second place in South Carolina let’s get down to brass tacks: What does it all mean?

Obviously it means a reprieve for Rubio, who successfully battled back from 5th place in New Hampshire, and another win for Donald and a big one; in a split field, he’s got the nomination on lock. Was it a terrible body blow for Cruz to come in third (politics goes by Toretto’s law, so don’t talk to me about ties)? Let’s go candidate-by-candidate again to take a look at how this can play out in the coming weeks before Nevada.

Trump

Trump got a win, and what a win. It’s all well and good to talk about fractured fields but Trump won: men, women, 45-64, 65+, high school graduates, college graduates, some college, born-again, and evangelical Christians, Republican, and Independents, somewhat conservatives and moderates, veterans and non-veterans, everyone not deciding in the last week, people looking for change, and people who want someone who tells it like it is (47% of the voters picked that one of those values). He also won people who care most about jobs, immigration, terrorism, the economy, as well as a great many other categories. It’s impressive.

So is Trump bulletproof or has he hit his ceiling? There’s a certain cascade effect in primaries, since people are social animals and you want to be part of a winning group. Even with Bush’s dropping out, he’s still far in front of any of his rivals. If he can hold that lead and keep Cruz and Rubio at each other’s throats (which doesn’t look like a difficult task) he can win the delegate counts and carry home the nomination over the objections of the political machine.

I’ve received emails from his campaign asking for help manning phone banks and walking precincts so he’s starting to stir a traditional machine which will help him on the ground against the turnout efforts of Cruz and Rubio. Given his monstrous advantage in free media (who picks a fight with the Pope?) he’ll dominate all the stories. Even his stumbles will be the story and he’ll stay in for the long haul. With the SEC Primaries coming up air-time and surrogacy are going to be important but Trump has a habit of flying-in, holding a monster rally, and then moving on. His barnstorming looks set to conquer the GOP and unless something changes after March 1 I give him a better than even chance of being the nominee in Cleveland.

Rubio

Rubio came in second, which he badly needed given all the endorsements he got from prominent and popular South Carolina Republicans. I’m not surprised that he did better in South Carolina than in New Hampshire, given the famously late-breaking New Hampshire electorate and his stumble in the debate. I guess it really did matter.

But when you break down the numbers there’s something to be concerned about however: he won only a few categories. He won post-graduate voters, people who decided within the last week, people whose top quality was he can win in November, people who prioritize experience in politics, people dissatisfied but not angry with the government, people who thought Haley’s endorsement was important, people who want illegals to be granted legal status, and people opposing a ban on Muslims entering the US. He tied with Trump in the 30-44 age group.

Worse, he came in second by a very large margin: 73,821 voters according to the Decision Desk HQ, or about 10% of the record-breaking electorate. I am not sure, as of this writing, if he won any congressional districts to pick up 6 delegates out of the 50 I thought were involved. Given his popularity with post-grads it wouldn’t be surprising if he won Charleston and Columbia which would help in the general since the GOP badly underperforms in cities which is why we have a hard time winning the Senate and presidency despite our great performance since 2010 in the House. However I note with trepidation that the categories he won are traditionally strong categories for Democratic voters (except for Haley’s endorsement of course) which negates some of those electability arguments that keep being made for him.

The best news of the night for Rubio was Jeb Bush’s suspension of his campaign. The common wisdom is that Rubio collects those votes, although I am somewhat skeptical that people who picked Bush over Rubio to the bitter end would shift their votes towards the Florida senator and not the remaining governor in the race: John Kasich.

If Kasich continues to play spoiler, he could keep Rubio from the second place finishes he needs in the SEC primaries. He also needs the support of the people who spent $150 million on Jeb’s campaign.

Looking at the ground now, you have to favor Rubio as the last anti-Trump candidate standing in the race. My one worry is that the panicky run of endorsements could drive him from a consensus to pure establishment candidate which could hurt him against Trump in a long primary.

Cruz

Third — even a close third — is a bad fit for Cruz in South Carolina, which did not treat him well. Looking at the breakdown of voters, it’s not hard to see why: he won only three categories of voters. The 17-29 group (10% of voters), very conservative (38% of voters), and shares my values (37% of voters).

Sure he came in a close third (by 1,122 votes) but in politics it doesn’t matter if you lose by one or one million votes. The optics are bad and his campaign and supporters have to face that fact even if it doesn’t seem to hold for some other candidates.

It seems the reason he came in third was because he was second (or third) in a number that Trump won by double-digits. Given the strong importance placed by the Cruz campaign in South Carolina, you have to ask yourself what went wrong.

Some of the problem was either brilliant dirty tricks (not to be discounted in South Carolina), ham-handed political behavior by his campaign, or some combination of the two. My money’s on both which is bad news for the folks opposing Trump: both Rubio and Cruz have shown surprising vulnerability to negative campaigning in New Hampshire and South Carolina and — if either wins the nomination — there will be plenty of negative campaigning going on against either of them.

Cruz has a larger problem, however, as he’s fighting a two-front war. Both Trump and Rubio seem to believe that if they’ll collect the lion shares of Cruz’s votes if they can knock him Cruz out of the race. Looking at RCP’s national polls (which, incidentally, don’t include post-South Carolina numbers yet) if Trump won Cruz’s voters he’d get 54.8% of the electorate. That’s game over.

If Rubio won Cruz’s voters (and Bush’s) he’d be at 42% – enough to beat Trump even with Kasich absorbing some of the votes away from Rubio. So Cruz has to figure out how to spend his money to counter two candidate’s attacks in the South and somehow boost his own chances at the same time.

Honestly I’m not sure how well that will work since he has shown both a tendency towards conservative spending and he’s not collecting high-profile endorsements like Rubio. Since he can’t count of high-profile endorsers to act as surrogates, he needs to open his coffers and flood the zone. But with Trump as the ultimate anti-Establishment candidate who can do no wrong — thanks in large part to a spectacularly poor anti-Trump campaign by the conservative media — Cruz’s opportunity to win is looking more and more like a long-shot.

The ray of hope for Cruz is that now Trump is starting to hit Rubio; if Rubio absorbs some of the Trump fire and has to fire back against Trump directly instead of with his oblique hits as he has, that’ll take some heat away from Cruz and give him more room to maneuver.

Bush

Jeb had another bad night, 7.9% and suspended his campaign, which was the right move. He never regained traction once Trump entered the race and proved that there are things fundraising can’t buy. He probably wasn’t helped by Mike Murphy’s taking a hefty portion — reckoned by some to be as high as $14 million — as compensation from the Super PAC.

The question now is where his voters and his money go from here. Given reportedly hard feelings from the Bush camp towards Rubio, Bush’s infrastructure (such as it is) like won’t go there. That’s actually good news for Rubio, as anyone with “Jeb 2016” on their resume should be banished from electoral politics forever.

Big money left after the bonfire from Right to Rise, however, should flow to Rubio since he’s the other Florida GOP politician and — before Rubio correctly read a weakness in Jeb’s bid — he was well-connected within the same organizations as Bush’s former protégé.

Bush’s numbers were best in the categories that Rubio has won, so the bulk of his voters should go to Rubio as well, though those who value experience category may go to Kasich.

Kasich

Kasich conceded South Carolina before primary day and wasn’t even in the state. That he performed as well as he did gives him the staying power to play possible kingmaker at a brokered convention or — if Rubio and Cruz both self-destruct — be the last anti-Trump standing.

He’s probably not going to do well in the SEC primary but may do better once he moves into the Rust Belt. Of all the candidates who could benefit from Jeb’s organization Kasich is the one.

Carson

Carson came in last, garnering 53,277 votes. I have to doff my cap to Mr. Dart however who correctly predicted a stronger showing in Greenville, Spartanburg, Cherokee, York, Lancaster, Chester, Newberry, Greenwood Anderson and Abbeville counties. If those voters had broken towards Cruz or Rubio they could have put the rest of the pack away for good.

Cruz seems to have been hurt worst by Carson remaining in the race as the counties Cruz came closest to Trump in were the same ones Carson did best in.

That doesn’t mean, however, that Cruz can count on those voters. With the exception of voters wanting an outside candidate, Carson’s best categories are also Rubio’s best categories (including several Rubio won outright) so Rubio may be able to pick up Carson’s voters in the long run if Carson drops out. Given the fact that he’s placed poorly in every state so far it’s hard to see why he’s still in the race at all. Hopefully he can manage a graceful exit soon and let his voters move on.

Looking Ahead to Nevada

We don’t know what will happen in Nevada, but the most recent poll on RCP gives Trump an intimidating 16 point lead. Cruz was in second with 23 and Rubio in third, but we should expect Rubio to get some lift from coming second in Nevada and Cruz to take a hit. If there’s an eight percent shift — which isn’t impossible — then Rubio comes in second in 23% and Cruz at 19%. Cruz’s turnout model may help him in another caucus but Rubio’s machine was both quiet and effective in South Carolina and Iowa, so Cruz will have to work hard.

The most likely scenario I see is Rubio in second and Cruz in third. But no matter what happens, we should expect another Trump victory on Tuesday.

There are 26 comments.

  1. BrentB67 Inactive

    Good analysis Brother Murrey.

    Did you include in the analysis what each candidate spent?

    The numbers I saw Saturday night indicated Rubio spent ~2x Cruz. If that was correct, that combined with the outstanding endorsements Rubio received he should’ve been much farther ahead than 1,200 votes.

    • #1
    • February 22, 2016, at 8:39 AM PDT
    • Like
  2. Pencilvania Inactive

    Great straightforward wrap-up, thanks for your insights, Austin.

    • #2
    • February 22, 2016, at 8:43 AM PDT
    • Like
  3. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    BrentB67: Good analysis Brother Murrey.

    Pencilvania: Great straightforward wrap-up, thanks for your insights, Austin.

    Thanks!

    BrentB67:Did you include in the analysis what each candidate spent?

    The numbers I saw Saturday night indicated Rubio spent ~2x Cruz. If that was correct, that combined with the outstanding endorsements Rubio received he should’ve been much farther ahead than 1,200 votes.

    I did not include spending in the analysis, although the numbers I saw agree with yours about Rubio v. Cruz, for two reasons.

    1. There’s always money to be spent this early in the cycle.
    2. Trump defies traditional spending metrics.

    If Rubio continues to edge out Cruz by spending more than Cruz is then he’s not being profligate as much as he is being smart: that money is there to help Rubio win the nomination so if he spends every last dime and beats Cruz while Cruz spends what he believes to be just enough then Cruz is being penny wise and pound foolish.

    Given Cruz’s strategy of winning the SEC primary he has to hoard some cash but if he could have beaten Rubio by doubling his own spending he probably should have done so. I’m not privy to internal metrics so I can’t know why they’re spending as little as they are but only the horse race fiends like me care about an 1,100 vote gap: the voting public cares about 1, 2, 3 because people largely make decisions on a gut level and then work backwards to rationalize their choices.

    Rubio’s performance was good but like I said it has some worrisome aspects – the only categories that he won that he arguably dominated are post-grads and the electability crowd; that’s a Democratic constituency and a small minority of the primary electorate.

    I think however that his money spend is wise as it helps to make up for the antics of his vocal supporters: the only reason I didn’t cast in with Team Marco months ago was how his supporters behaved.

    • #3
    • February 22, 2016, at 9:01 AM PDT
    • Like
  4. Profile Photo Member

    At what point does a preference cascade begin for Trump? The facts, for good or for ill, are that Trump has won two out of three races so far. Even if it isn’t excitement, at some point, resignation sets in as people start looking ahead to the general election.

    More importantly, does it happen before the opposition to Trump consolidates? I suspect this assessment by David French is right.

    • #4
    • February 22, 2016, at 9:46 AM PDT
    • Like
  5. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Quinn the Eskimo: At what point does a preference cascade begin for Trump? The facts, for good or for ill, are that Trump has won two out of three races so far.

    If he wins 10 out of 11 SEC Primary states by any convincing margin (and he’s poised to do just that and maybe sweep them) then I think he has the nomination.

    I can’t give odds of course, but both Rubio and Cruz are politicians playing for the largest stake they can and with enough people telling them they’re the one that it will be hard to break off.

    As it stands I think Cruz would break off first, particularly if he doesn’t have Rubio out by 3/15 (which accounts for the brutal knife-fighting between the candidates) since his strategy was dependent on winning early. But if the Cruz/Rubio voter overlap isn’t as large as is imagined by the political commentators (including me) then a Rubio tilt at Trump in an empty field might be doomed anyway.

    • #5
    • February 22, 2016, at 10:04 AM PDT
    • Like
  6. Profile Photo Member

    Austin Murrey: If he wins 10 out of 11 SEC Primary states by any convincing margin (and he’s poised to do just that and maybe sweep them) then I think he has the nomination.

    I meant to check last week how many winner take all states there are. I know that there are a lot of states which become winner take all if you get over 50 percent. Although I would put money on your being right, I wonder whether a concerted anti-Trump push in a field with only Rubio or Cruz might do. With Cruz, I suppose it might be a closer call because he has a lot of enemies. With Rubio, I could imagine a protracted (though likely losing) effort to block Trump going to the convention.

    • #6
    • February 22, 2016, at 11:57 AM PDT
    • Like
  7. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Austin Murrey: Looking at the ground now you have to favor Rubio as the last anti-Trump candidate standing in the race.

    And now we have reports that Rick Tyler has been asked to resign by Ted Cruz. Another pat-on-the-back moment for me.

    Quinn the Eskimo: I meant to check last week how many winner take all states there are.

    I think it’s overall winner takes all for all states after March 15 which I believe is 25 states. A lot of them (a lot) look to be pretty Trump-friendly or Trump curious.

    • #7
    • February 22, 2016, at 12:35 PM PDT
    • Like
  8. Mate De Inactive

    Eventually, Cruz and Rubio are going to have to go after Trump. Right now they are tearing each other down, Rubio perhaps more effectively than Cruz, but Trump is the front runner and at some point they are going to have to punch in the nose (figuratively, not literally). Cruz is hitting back but he will have to up his game if he wants to try to take him out, it’s either that or Trump is the nominee.

    • #8
    • February 22, 2016, at 1:59 PM PDT
    • Like
  9. TKC1101 Inactive

    Excellent analysis. Since the media to an extent is the trigger on the preference cascade, I expect they will prevent it as long as they can.

    The horserace is a ratings winner and a content filler. Serious profits at stake. If they call it for Trump early, they will be forced to cover for Hillary again, and even the media dislike that job these days. How in hell do you say good things about barking like a dog?

    • #9
    • February 22, 2016, at 3:30 PM PDT
    • Like
  10. Mr. Dart Inactive

    According to the biggest newspaper in South Carolina, McClatchy’s The State in Columbia 25% of voters said the Haley endorsement was important to them. But 50% of those people voted for someone other than Rubio.
    The winner of the endorsement game was Lt. Gov. McMaster. He backed the winner and has a leg up now in his run for Governor in 2018.

    • #10
    • February 22, 2016, at 5:34 PM PDT
    • Like
  11. Mr. Dart Inactive

    And thanks for noting my call about Carson blocking Cruz out of #2, sir. I saw it happening like slow motion car wreck. In my county Ben finished a solid 4th with Jeb dead last.

    • #11
    • February 22, 2016, at 5:37 PM PDT
    • Like
  12. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Mr. Dart:And thanks for noting my call about Carson blocking Cruz out of #2, sir. I saw it happening like slow motion car wreck. In my county Ben finished a solid 4th with Jeb dead last.

    Hey, credit where credit’s due!

    • #12
    • February 22, 2016, at 7:15 PM PDT
    • Like
  13. Profile Photo Member

    TKC1101: Since the media to an extent is the trigger on the preference cascade, I expect they will prevent it as long as they can.

    About two-thirds of the available delegates are up in March. Things should settle out pretty quickly, with either a cascade in Trump’s favor or a last stand against him. Or both.

    Besides, the media spending its energy trying to create a cascade for Hillary.

    • #13
    • February 22, 2016, at 7:45 PM PDT
    • Like
  14. Columbo Member

    Austin Murrey:

    If he wins 10 out of 11 SEC Primary states by any convincing margin (and he’s poised to do just that and maybe sweep them) then I think he has the nomination.

    If Trump wins 10 out of 11 SEC Primary states, and if Ted Cruz really believes what he said in 59:47 on the floor of the U.S. Senate on September 28, 2015, I predict the most likely partnership to come out of those results will be Trump-Cruz.

    • #14
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:01 AM PDT
    • Like
  15. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    TKC1101: Since the media to an extent is the trigger on the preference cascade, I expect they will prevent it as long as they can.

    About two-thirds of the available delegates are up in March. Things should settle out pretty quickly, with either a cascade in Trump’s favor or a last stand against him. Or both.

    Besides, the media spending its energy trying to create a cascade for Hillary.

    Bet on both on the Republican side – someone was objecting to a comparison between Romney and Trump over on the Member Feed but their primary campaigns are eerily similar so far.

    They’re candidates that supposedly a great part of the electorate doesn’t want but can’t defeat because they’re too busy fighting each other over who gets to be the not-candidate. Granted Romney’s opposition wasn’t as distinguished as Trump’s but it’s easy to see a small plurality foisting an unloved candidate on the rest of the party that will move forward into a defeat on election day for the second time in two election cycles.

    The difference is that the too-clever-by-half RNC seems to have brought this on themselves when they tried to restructure the primary season to prevent another Santorum-Romney style fight from damaging the nominee ahead of the general election.

    • #15
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:01 AM PDT
    • Like
  16. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Oh, side note – a lot of my percentages on voter category seem to have gone missing in the edit during Main Feed promotion to make the post more readable.

    Click through to that first link to get a sense of how important (or unimportant) certain voter categories are.

    For example “Can Win in November” (known as electability) is only important to 15% of the exit poll sample; “Tells it Like It Is” is 16% of the sample and I’m not sure that’s a traditional exit poll question in presidential politics and “Shares My Values” hits 37%. The top three candidates each won a different one of those categories.

    • #16
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:07 AM PDT
    • Like
  17. Profile Photo Member

    I looked at the schedule and the types of delegate allocation each state has. The first pure winner take all states are Ohio and Florida on March 15 with Arizona on March 22. Pure winner take all states only make up about 15% of the delegates. There are a number of other states which become winner take all if a candidate gets a majority of the vote. Many of those are on Super Tuesday.

    Until Trump crosses 50%, it’s going to be a relatively slow march to the nomination. (Perhaps faster than the GOP in 1976 or faster than the Democrats usually do, but relative to most Republican races.) But even as a slow march, it’s still his lead.

    • #17
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:42 AM PDT
    • Like
  18. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Quinn the Eskimo:I looked at the schedule and the types of delegate allocation each state has. The first pure winner take all states are Ohio and Florida on March 15 with Arizona on March 22. Pure winner take all states only make up about 15% of the delegates. There are a number of other states which become winner take all if a candidate gets a majority of the vote. Many of those are on Super Tuesday.

    Until Trump crosses 50%, it’s going to be a relatively slow march to the nomination. (Perhaps faster than the GOP in 1976 or faster than the Democrats usually do, but relative to most Republican races.) But even as a slow march, it’s still his lead.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about it taking a while, we should know which of Cruz or Rubio drops after Florida and/or Texas. If Cruz cannot win Texas he should drop out; if Rubio cannot win Florida then he should drop out. If neither can win their home state it’s Trump.

    • #18
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:47 AM PDT
    • Like
  19. Profile Photo Member

    Austin Murrey: I wouldn’t worry too much about it taking a while, we should know which of Cruz or Rubio drops after Florida and/or Texas. If Cruz cannot win Texas he should drop out; if Rubio cannot win Florida then he should drop out. If neither can win their home state it’s Trump.

    True, but there are a lot of people who will look for someone to try to oppose Trump to the nomination. It’s pretty much viewed as an existential struggle in some quarter (some Establishment, sure, but some conservatives who think he’s a liberal).

    • #19
    • February 23, 2016, at 7:55 AM PDT
    • Like
  20. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Austin Murrey: I wouldn’t worry too much about it taking a while, we should know which of Cruz or Rubio drops after Florida and/or Texas. If Cruz cannot win Texas he should drop out; if Rubio cannot win Florida then he should drop out. If neither can win their home state it’s Trump.

    True, but there are a lot of people who will look for someone to try to oppose Trump to the nomination. It’s pretty much viewed as an existential struggle in some quarter (some Establishment, sure, but some conservatives who think he’s a liberal).

    Well, they’re right about the existential struggle and worse they’re losing it.

    The only people who seem to vote against Trump with consistency are those labeled “very conservative.”

    The Establishment would prefer a known-quantity deal-maker (witness the epic waste of money in New Hampshire on well-known candidates gravitating to the center) and have settled on Rubio; for example rumor is Corker is going to endorse him today and if there’s one Republican endorsement I wouldn’t want it would be Corker’s.

    The very conservative voters have settled on Cruz as their champion (35%) but only slightly over Trump (29%) – they seem to loathe the leadership as much or more than anyone else and they were 38% of the exit poll sample.

    You can’t alienate a large part of your primary voters and expect to win the general especially when the major “threat” of Trump is winning the moderates who constitute your potential swing voters.

    • #20
    • February 23, 2016, at 8:08 AM PDT
    • Like
  21. Profile Photo Member

    Austin Murrey: The Establishment would prefer a known-quantity deal-maker (witness the epic waste of money in New Hampshire on well-known candidates gravitating to the center) and have settled on Rubio; for example rumor is Corker is going to endorse him today and if there’s one Republican endorsement I wouldn’t want it would be Corker’s.

    I expect at the end the Establishment coming to terms with Trump. After all, there is a reason why an Establishment is an Establishment. It knows how to survive. It would prefer to keep things going as is, but it’ll figure things out. Hacks are flexible that way. People will be surprised.

    I think the faction that thinks Trump is a Trojan horse for something not conservative will get the brunt of what’s coming.

    Maybe that’s cynical. I’m not psychic, so it will be interesting to see if that’s right.

    • #21
    • February 23, 2016, at 8:24 AM PDT
    • Like
  22. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Quinn the Eskimo: Maybe that’s cynical. I’m not psychic, so it will be interesting to see if that’s right.

    You only think you’re not psychic. Sounds like you’ve accurately forecasted the future to me.

    • #22
    • February 23, 2016, at 8:55 AM PDT
    • Like
  23. Craig Inactive

    I sense that we’re back in 2008, only both sides have swapped the circumstances.

    1: Trump As Obama Syndrome: The Democrats realized that they could win with the White House on the enthusiasm of Obama voters. These were voters who normally non-participants in elections, but voted in 2008 for Obama. Trump seems to have the same sway, and I get the feeling the GOP poo-bahs will settle for Trump or see it as an ‘easy’ way of winning the White House.

    2: President Trump As President Obama Syndrome: Just as Obama was to the Democrats, Trump will be just as self-serving to the Republicans. Which means he will have no concerns what his policies, or their outcome does to his own political party in general. Obama happily squandered away Democrat gains from 2008 in both the House & Senate, Trump will be equally fine with such causalities.

    • #23
    • February 23, 2016, at 11:44 AM PDT
    • Like
  24. Austin Murrey Inactive
    Austin Murrey Post author

    Craig:

    Obama happily squandered away Democrat gains from 2008 in both the House & Senate, Trump will be equally fine with such causalities.

    You’re probably right about this – I’m not sure if any Senate and House Republicans would openly go to war with President Trump. They might try and work closely with his staff (and who the heck would his staff be?) to get him to implement their preferred policies but I’m not sure how well it would work.

    • #24
    • February 23, 2016, at 12:57 PM PDT
    • Like
  25. Stad Thatcher

    Austin Murrey: Sure he came in a close third (by 1,122 votes) but in politics it doesn’t matter if you lose by one or one million votes. The optics are bad and his campaign and supporters have to face that fact even if it doesn’t seem to hold for some other candidates.

    Don’t forget Cruz came in at an extremely close third with three very popular SC pols endorsing Rubio. We’ll never know whether or not the endorsements helped Rubio, but assuming they did, he needs to do some more work to gain support.

    Don’t get me wrong – I love Marco, but I voted for Ted this primary.

    • #25
    • February 23, 2016, at 1:34 PM PDT
    • Like
  26. Craig Inactive

    Austin Murrey: I’m not sure if any Senate and House Republicans would openly go to war with President Trump.

    I meant more along the lines of implementing an unpopular policy or program that the opposing party successfully argues is unnecessary. Case in point, the Affordable Healthcare Act, and how the Republicans used it to regain the House (and almost the Senate) in the following midterms.

    • #26
    • February 23, 2016, at 4:36 PM PDT
    • Like