Thinking about how to vote in 2024? I Am!

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  1. tsmog profile image84
    tsmogposted 4 months ago

    We all know it will be party-line loyalty for most voters. According to Pew Research, six percent of voters for the 2022 elections crossed party lines. For the mythical independent voter, it is a binary choice for the President.

    We are fortunate to be able to assess two Presidents based on criteria each holds as having importance. However, it is a given Biden has only served 3 years of his term. As an independent, I now look at different variables for my vote. So, the following is where I begin that journey.

    One element I consider is the bottom line; I ask what the compare/contrast on the economy is.

    Note: I consider the pandemic's unforeseeable misfortune affecting both presidents.

    Donald Trump (2017-2021)
    •    GDP growth: 2.6%
    •    Unemployment rate: 6.4%
    •    Inflation rate: 1.4%
    •    Poverty rate: 11.90%
    •    Real disposable income per capita: $48,286
    •    Disposable income per capita (adjusted for inflation): $48,286

    Joe Biden (2021-Present) [Jan 7, 2024 – 3 yrs.]
    •    GDP growth: 2.6%
    •    Unemployment rate: 3.5%
    •    Inflation rate: 5.0%
    •    Poverty rate: 12.80%
    •    Real disposable income per capita: $46,682
    •    Disposable income per capita (adjusted for inflation): $46,557

    From LBJ to Biden: How the Economy Performed Under Each President by Yahoo Finance (Jan 7, 2024)
    https://finance.yahoo.com/news/economy- … 38478.html

    U.S. Debt Change is measured as a percentage by the President.
    Trump = 33.1% increase
    Biden = 8.8% increase

    U.S. Debt by President: Dollar and Percentage by Investopedia (Jan 4, 2024)
    https://www.investopedia.com/us-debt-by … ge-7371225

    Regarding the deficit, I equally place responsibility on Congress with the President. It's too complicated to assess; others can review it and weigh in.

    However, I post key takeaways from U.S. Presidents With the Largest Budget Deficits by Investopedia (Sept 28, 2023)
    https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answer … ficits.asp

    Key Takeaways
    •    Donald Trump, Barack Obama, and George W. Bush had the biggest budget deficits in U.S. history.
    •    The deficit topped $1 trillion in 2020.
    •    The deficit declined to about $900 billion by 2022 under Joe Biden's administration. (What it is today, I don't know)
    •    The U.S. government has run a budget deficit for nearly all of the last 60 years.
    •    A president's influence over a budget deficit doesn't begin until after the federal fiscal year ends on Sept, 30 of their first year in office.

    Anything else I should consider?

    Should I take the position of wait and see?

    Thoughts?

    1. Credence2 profile image77
      Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

      I can't speak for you or your choices, TSmog.

      Yes, I vote staunchly Democratic. As I have fundamental problems with the Republican viewpoints as to governance, social issues, there are no options.

      At least with Haley as the nominee for the Republicans,the ideas surrounding fascism and authoritarianism promoted by Trump is off of the table. Moderates and independents will have to struggle with openly voting for very possibly a convicted felon. Regardless, it would provide a divide and conquer scenario allowing my chosen candidate to win.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks for sharing while saying, I support Haley, while hanging onto hope for her. But, alas, I am not resolute about the choice between her and Biden, yet. I am waiting to see if I hold my nose or vote for Teddy Roosevelt again if it is between Biden and Trump. I am sure you noticed the purpose of the OP is sharing the journey of deciding my vote.

    2. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
      Kathleen Cochranposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      Yes. Please consider criminal charges against each candidate. Please consider number of lies credited to each candidate. Please consider assaults on democracy by each candidate. Please consider unethical behavior on the part of each candidate's party.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Oops! Kathleen, I just reviewed the thread noticing I did not reply. Sorry! Funny, I did research project on lying the other day by both Trump and Biden inclusive of gaffes. I agree Democracy is at issue. I have done some research on that as well. Interestingly, both sides of the fence say Democracy is at threat.

        The question for graphic below is: How well would you say democracy is working in the United States these days?
        https://usercontent1.hubstatic.com/16871582_f520.jpg

        1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
          Kathleen Cochranposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Just because both sides say something, doesn't mean both sides are equally correct.  Three most indicted administrations in recent American history (last 50 years): Trump, Nixon, Reagan. See a pattern?

          1. tsmog profile image84
            tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Nope, not really. I'll look into it later.

            1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
              Kathleen Cochranposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              Spoiler alert: They were all GOP and in the double digits.

      2. gmwilliams profile image84
        gmwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        That is what discerning & educated voters.  They also vote what is intelligently in their best interests regardless of what party they are affiliated with.  Thank you Kathleen.

        1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
          Kathleen Cochranposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I'd say the Constitution remaining intact is in everyone's best interests.

    3. Sharlee01 profile image87
      Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

      It appears that your primary focus is on the economy. Perhaps, instead of solely examining its impact on your financial situation, you might want to reflect on whether you are content with the current state of affairs and your overall well-being. While ideologies certainly play a role, consider whether you are at ease with the present administration or if you desire some form of change. It's worth noting that there are broader aspects beyond just economic factors to consider.

      You have time to sit back and watch what is to come. It seems all changes very quickly under this president.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        From the OP, " So, the following is where I begin that journey.
        One element I consider is the bottom line; I ask what the compare/contrast on the economy is."


        Otherwise, thanks for suggestions.

        1. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Sorry, I did stray off subject --- I will redeem myself and head back to the OP subject.

          Well,  I think the economy changes almost weekly. Back to the subject of the economy.    Just today I noted the inflation rate had a bump up, as well, and this. ---

          ECONOMY
          U.S. deficit tops half a trillion dollars in the first quarter of fiscal year.

          This is very ugly and indicates we are headed in the wrong direction.

          "The U.S. government ran up another half a trillion dollars in red ink in the first quarter of its fiscal year, the Treasury Department reported Thursday.

          For the period from October 2023 through December 2023, the budget deficit totaled just shy of $510 billion, following a shortfall of $129.4 billion in just December alone, which was 52% higher than a year ago. The jump in the deficit pushed total government debt past $34 trillion for the first time.

          Compared to last year, which saw a final deficit of $1.7 trillion, 2024 is running even hotter." Please read more
          https://www.cnbc.com/2024/01/11/us-defi … idappshare

          In my view, I see no way to compare the Trump economy to our current economy in any respect. Just looking at my monthly expenditures tells me I was very much more satisfied with the Trump economy.

          1. tsmog profile image84
            tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Thanks! And, for the article link. Maybe it is as suggested with the OP a matter of wait and see at this point. Subjectively, I can say with prices resulting from inflation, "Ouch!" Pain is something hard to forget.

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

              My comment was to add to your lengthy economic stats. As I explained my economic information was fresh off the presses... As you mentioned, Joe has not yet crossed the finish line.

              It appeared to me you were hoping to have others join in an answer to this thought you shared ---  "One element I consider is the bottom line; I ask what the compare/contrast on the economy is."

              How can one compare at this point, three years in?

              As you mentioned  ---  "We are fortunate to be able to assess two Presidents based on criteria each holds as having importance. However, it is a given Biden has only served 3 years of his term."

              Hence I added some new pertinent economic information for you to be abreast of, and to consider.

              I must ask, what did you hope others would share regarding your OP? I am lost.

              And now I see the well-used term Nazi pop up in the conversation. Never surprised, always left smiling.

              1. tsmog profile image84
                tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                "I must ask, what did you hope others would share regarding your OP? I am lost."

                Sharing, I had no expectations whatsoever. My 'hope' as most writers was for just one person to read it. No response required, though any is icing on the cake.

                I am appreciative of any and all contributions. I think I did say, "Thanks!" for your response. That was followed with, "And, for the article link."

                Of all the responses thus far, not meant as criticism to any, your second one was the only one on the economy. What I garnered is to be aware of the deficit as comparative component of the economies between the two front runners.

                With review, I see I need to take responsibility for the responses.

                My first question, is "Anything else I should consider?" which is an open ended question, though not by design. The responses did answer that question. Lesson learned. As they say in the writer world, Edit, Edit, Edit.

                However, I did learn. Hooray!

                1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                  Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  "Sharing, I had no expectations whatsoever. My 'hope' as most writers was for just one person to read it. No response required, though any is icing on the cake."

                  I think after rereading your OP, I can see you were just sharing, and not necessarily seeking chat. Perhaps just a thread to follow your adventure, a place to record info to aid you in making a very clear decision on who you will ultimately vote for?

                  Interesting, and I applaud you for being so scientific. I will step away for now, but keep an eye on your progress... But keep my two cents to myself.

                  1. tsmog profile image84
                    tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    smile Just putting a No Party Affiliation California voter's perspective out there.

                    I listened to the responses to the OP garnering important information for future consideration with my journey for my vote.

    4. abwilliams profile image68
      abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      Trump has been falsely accused, framed, robbed (in more ways than one) and persecuted to this day; he has earned America's vote, the most difficult way possible.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks for weighing in. I 'do' take that into consideration while am somewhat undecided.

        1. Ken Burgess profile image76
          Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          A moment of clarity has arrived, my thanks tsmog for prompting it in another thread.

          Understanding the moment in time America is now in

          Depending on your political beliefs, the majority of America, willing or not, is divided into two camps, in general... Left/Progressive and Right/Conservative.

          Political words and phrases trigger a network of associations and emotional evaluations that do not necessarily come to the surface of conscious awareness, but which nevertheless shape our reaction in a positive or negative direction based on our leaning Left or Right.

          Consider the reaction to the phrase “limited government under a Constitution.”

          Let us consider the perspectives of the two sides today, one Right/Conservative and the other fully immersed in the Left/Progressive worldview.

          Conservative = Liberal, Constitutionalist, Proud to be American, Equal, Opportunity (based on merit and ability), Freedom, etc.

          Someone grounded in the Conservative worldview described above would have a network of associations that might look something like this:

          https://hubstatic.com/16919162.jpg

          Note that conservative ideas about human nature and the source of our rights are all triggered by the phrase “limited government under a Constitution” and form a kind of mental structure that supports the idea of limited government. Even images from history, with the horrible abuses of power under fascist and communist regimes, could be part of that architecture.

          And here are two critical points: A person with a network of associations such as that above would experience the idea of limited government in a positive light without necessarily having to think about the underlying reasons.

          And let us note explicitly that the abstract principle of “limited government under a Constitution” is grounded in a deep moral desire to prevent abuse of power and to protect innocent people from harm.

          But what if the person hearing that same phrase has been immersed in the Left’s worldview through public schooling and other cultural institutions?

          Their network of associations might look something like shown below:


          https://hubstatic.com/16919169.jpg

          The idea of “limited government under a Constitution” is on shaky ground when it rests on a mental structure as shown.

          In the Left’s view, that idea is an antiquated holdover of an earlier and less “woke” era promoted by white males to preserve their privileged positions of social and economic power.

          Because the Left views the proper role of government as that of activist, seeking out and eliminating inequality wherever it is found, the Constitution’s limits on governmental power represent to the Left an actual barrier to true progress towards economic and social equality.

          And once again, note that, at least within this set of associations, innocent people are actually harmed by the limits imposed by our Constitution.

          The growing influence of that perspective is direct evidence of the success of the Left’s long march through our educational and other cultural institutions.

          The implications are even more stunning when we realize that any word or phrase having to do with role of government—”tax cuts,” “border security,” “law and order”—would run into that deep set of associations.

          Of course, there will be people in the middle with elements of each worldview. But at its core, the political struggle for our future is not just between policies but between the fundamental differences in worldview of left and right and in our competing understanding of right and wrong.

          In this sense... Trump represents Constitution, America first, Border Control, limited global/war engagements.  Biden (and really anyone approved by the establishment) represents the continued march into a Constitution-less America, a Border-less America, a UN Agenda 2030 America.

          I think it is important that it be understood in this context, because this is exactly where we are today.  This is the real battle, the real political struggle ongoing right now, everything else is distractionary.

          For a full review of where I took the majority of that from, read the link below:
          https://capitalresearch.org/article/the … nd-part-2/

          1. tsmog profile image84
            tsmogposted 3 months agoin reply to this

            Thanks for link. Bookmarked. I see it is series, so later when time is of avail I will read it in complete.

      2. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
        Kathleen Cochranposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        abwilliams: Any evidence of any of that or just MAGA opinions?

        1. abwilliams profile image68
          abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I don't know Kathleen, you tell me, have you actually seen the pee tapes? Are you in conflict with Mueller's findings/report, and if so, why?
          We can start with "falsely accused" and then, methodically, work our way on through.

          1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
            Kathleen Cochranposted 3 months agoin reply to this

            I don't have that kind of time. Just Google "indictments" with each candidate's name.

    5. Ken Burgess profile image76
      Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      It looks like you have considered the economics of it very well.

      Though, as you say, it is hard to evaluate without the asterisk of the Pandemic.  Not to mention the never-before-seen political antics used to oust a very un-friendly-to-the-establishment President.

      So, other things to consider.

      One:
      The Open Border of the Biden Administration that helps facilitate migrants arriving here and being supported by American social services vs. the functioning effort to slow migration Trump had created in partnership with the Mexican government.

      Two:
      Continued funding and escalating global conflicts, as the Biden Administration has done, instigating and funding foreign 'proxy' wars and allowing hundreds of billions to flow to State sponsors of terrorists like Iran vs. the efforts to end America being the primary funder of NATO, sanctioning Iran and withholding hundreds of billions from being sent to them, and not funding new 'proxy' wars.

      Three:
      The social issues, like men having to be recognized as women and being protected as a minority class, children being mutilated rather than protected and kept from making irreversible decisions until they are an adult, and that whole shift in progressive politics to accept the insane as normal.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks, Ken!

        #1 - Living in San Diego the border is an issue as well as viewing it from the national perspective. As they say a cluster . . .

        #2 - From what I learned with the article I referenced at our other conversation; The “Ghost Budget”: How America Pays for Endless War by Just Security (Jan 3, 2024) and the other two I am inclined to agree. Noted! I do have reservations regard NATO.

        #3 - Some I agree and some I don't.

        1. Ken Burgess profile image76
          Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I read your opening post and realized you were asking for other things to consider.

          In general, I disagree with the direction the Biden administration has taken on 80% of its goals, ambitions, agendas, and efforts.

          I do like the effort to improve infrastructure and the grid, but I have concern that was much more of a feeding frenzy and waste of money than a real answer to the issues.

          In fact, I am fairly certain of it.  Elon Musk revolutionized the Space Industry, this was made possible by the decisions the Obama Administration made to open up space to the private sector and to help facilitate this with government support/funding.

          The Biden Administration on the other hand, threw money at companies like GM and Ford to build new EV factories and threw money at energy companies to diversify to 'renewable energy' rather than pushing for new companies to supplant them, as Space X did NASA... so I suspect this money spending splurge will prove ill spent, you don't ask dinosaurs to change their ways... you invest in the next generation/evolution instead.

          Everything about the Biden Administration has been old school wrong, corrupt politics of old... except in the social arena, where they have gone off the rail with displacing women with men (who claim they are women), and with Equity over Equality, and all the other deranged efforts they have implemented.

          There are other factors people will consider as well, such as relinquishing abortion back to the states to decide... unfortunately, that is an issue that will loom large, and a primary consideration, even as the rest of the issues cause much more significant long term harm to the nation.

          Lastly, there is amazing show of abuse of power with this administration, how they have used the FBI to intercede in free speech on social media, in attacking their political opponents, in going after businessmen that do not bend the knee to their efforts (IE - Elon Musk). This is a step away from Stalinism and I fear what this Administration will do if they retain power.

          Or what they might do to ensure it is never threatened, and that there is no alternate choice allowed to America.

          1. tsmog profile image84
            tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Thanks, Ken!! I agree with, "you don't ask dinosaurs to change their ways... you invest in the next generation/evolution instead."

            Where I stand on abortion, 'against it, but pro choice', I am happy with it being up to the states. I didn't expect SCOTUS to enact through law when life begins. In that case, I am thankful I live in California.

            The rest I noted, stewing on them for now, and researching. Thanks for your insight!

          2. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
            Kathleen Cochranposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

            "There are other factors people will consider as well, such as relinquishing abortion back to the states to decide... unfortunately, that is an issue that will loom large, and a primary consideration, even as the rest of the issues cause much more significant long term harm to the nation."

            That was a Trump/GOP move - not President Biden.

            1. abwilliams profile image68
              abwilliamsposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

              As a woman, Kathleen, not sure if you are a Mom or not, that doesn't matter, I don't want to know....does it bother you in the least what abortion actually is, what it does, what it causes?
              Does it bother you in the least that abortion is the only thing that Joe Biden is stronger on than Donald Trump, in the polls?
              Who will allow for the most babies to be killed, could be a determining factor going forward.....
              Does that not bother anyone else?
              It's okay, if I stand alone on this, it wouldn't be the first time.

              1. Willowarbor profile image61
                Willowarborposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

                Does this bother anyone?

                A Florida woman, unable to get an abortion in her state, carried to term a baby who had no kidneys.

                Deborah Dorbert’s son Milo died in her arms on March 3, shortly after he was born, just as her doctors had predicted he would.

                “He gasped for air a couple of times when I held him,” said Dorbert, 33. “I watched my child take his first breath, and I held him as he took his last one.”

                She said her pregnancy was proceeding normally until November, when, at 24 weeks, an ultrasound showed that the fetus did not have kidneys and that she had hardly any amniotic fluid. Not only was the baby sure to die, her doctors told her, but the pregnancy put her at especially high risk of preeclampsia, a potentially deadly complication.

                Her doctors told her it was too late to terminate the pregnancy in Florida, which bans nearly all abortions after 15 weeks. The only options were to go out of state to get an abortion or to carry the baby to full term, and Dorbert and her husband didn’t have the money to travel.   

                Cruelty really is the point isn't it? Where is the sense in this?  That a state government should force these circumstances on a woman.

                https://www.cnn.com/2023/05/02/health/f … index.html

                1. Ken Burgess profile image76
                  Ken Burgessposted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

                  There is no sense, there should be medical exceptions, that would be common sense.

                  Just as there is no sense that we, the greater society, need to accept a man as a woman because he wants to act like, compete with and invade women's spaces.

                  People will have to make a list of what the priorities are to them and vote accordingly... neither side is perfect.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 6 weeks agoin reply to this

                    I have plenty of common sense, yet I don't agree.

  2. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
    Kathleen Cochranposted 4 months ago

    This generation of Republicans will be categorized in history along with Nazis. Just read the rationalizations in this discussion.

  3. tsmog profile image84
    tsmogposted 4 months ago

    A result of a conversation with Sharlee I pondered the deficit as it is today. Doing some poking about I arrived at Deficit Tracker; BPC’s economic policy team analyzes the government’s running budget deficit and updates the Deficit Tracker. BPC is Bipartisan Policy Center. They update the tracker monthly most recent date Jan 11, 2024. (Bookmarked)
    https://bipartisanpolicy.org/report/deficit-tracker/

    Following is a snap shot of their presentation:

    Tracking the Federal Deficit: December 2023

    $128 billion deficit, increasing year-over-year (YOY) by $43 billion.
         $430 billion in revenues, decreased YOY by $25 billion (6%).
         $558 billion in outlays, increased YOY by $18 billion (3%).
         The December 2023 deficit was impacted by unique timing shifts in outlays, if not for which it would have been $126 billion instead of $128 billion, resulting in a YOY increase of $41 billion.*

    That is followed by:

    Fiscal Year Comparisons with FY2023. It has the cumulative deficit, revenues, and outlays. They state the cumulative deficit is $509 billion so far in FY2024.

    Their concluding analysis is:

    "The Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged in December and signaled that it is considering reducing the federal funds rate in 2024. The gross national debt also set a new record,  $34 trillion.

    Members of Congress continue to negotiate FY2024 funding, hoping to avert a government shutdown before laddered continuing resolutions expire on January 19 and February 2. Some lawmakers are also negotiating a bipartisan tax package that, if enacted, could impact FY2024 revenues and spending projections. Legislators have also been asked by the Biden administration to consider emergency supplemental funding for security and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, Israel, Gaza, and Indo-Pacific allies, U.S. border security, and other domestic spending including natural disasters and child care."

  4. tsmog profile image84
    tsmogposted 4 months ago

    The mythical independent voter grows to encompass 43% of respondents to a recent Gallup poll (Jan 12, 2024). With jest, Phew! I thought I was alone. wink Republicans and Democrats both come in at 27% of voting bloc.

    However, the story highlights are:

    Story Highlights

    ** 43% identified as independents in 2023, tying 2014 record
    ** Record-low 27% identify as Democrats, tying Republicans
    ** Republicans maintain slight edge in leaned party identification
    ** Ideological identification steady; conservatives, moderates largest groups

    The Gallup Organization concluding implications for the poll is:

    Implications

    As 2024 begins, the parties are closely matched based on political party identification and leanings. However, Democrats are clearly in a weaker position than they have been in any recent election year. This is based on the new low percentage of U.S. adults identifying as Democrats, as well as the Republican advantage in leaned party identification. In the past four presidential election years, Democrats had at least a five-point advantage in leaned party identification. They won the popular vote each of those years, though Republican Donald Trump won the 2016 election based on the Electoral College vote.

    This presidential election year is likely to see a drop in the percentage of political independents, as has occurred in six of the past seven presidential election years (all but 2012), amid intense focus on national politics and the two major parties. Still, even with a slight election-year drop -- which has ranged from two to five points -- independents will remain the largest, and arguably most persuadable, group of voters. In what is expected to be a close election contest, it is critical for each party, but especially Democrats, to nominate a candidate who can appeal to independent voters.

    Article at this link:
    https://news.gallup.com/poll/548459/ind … w-low.aspx

    Note: As interesting as it is remains the consideration of battle ground states.

    1. profile image0
      savvydatingposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      Tsmog, I read the Gallup article. Interesting.

      You say you “identify” as a conservative. Or are you now an Independent, which seems more likely?

      My question to you:

      What is your stumbling block?

      What makes you so undecided?

      Is it the faltering economy, or perhaps the wide open borders, or maybe abortion up until the ninth month and even afterward, or perhaps the selective confusion regarding gender dysphoria that is promoted by activists?

      If we know, we can better answer your question as to what it is, specifically, that concerns you.

      Regarding my last point about gender dysphoria, I recall that on another forum you stated that you took the side of doctors. This video gives you the side of the victim. FYI: This is a voting issue.

      https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=f9QwZNhLjfY

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks for the reply, Savvy!

        I will answer your questions as best as I can considering your statement, “If we know, we can better answer your question as to what it is, specifically, that concerns you.”

        Allow me to first preface I am doing a step by step process. Along that line of thinking Nov. 5 is a little ways down the road, so time is on my side. An intent is to share that journey, maybe, as I go along.

        The OP stated I am looking into the economy as the first element of that process and I am still doing that today. You stated it is faltering. I appreciate that position with respect, however I am undecided. At this time I am focusing on debt. Trump was a 33.1% increase while Biden through three years is 8.8%. I created an OP/Thread on debt.

        Sharlee gave a hint to keep an eye on the deficit. Noted, while I shared ‘how’ I am doing that earlier in this thread.

        Yes, I did ask, “Anything else I should consider?” However, intention was the economy. Oops! My bust my inquiry statement was incomplete.

        However, the replies are noted and valuable to me.

        Now, your questions . . .

        “What is your stumbling block?” Answer: For what? Voting? I am voting for Teddy Roosevelt as it is ‘today’. In other words, I 'will' vote!

        Or, to vote Trump? That is what this whole process is about beginning with this thread. Should I vote for Trump or Biden as a binary choice? However, today, I think both parties have gone off the rails.

        [Edit: By parties I mean the big picture inclusive of aligned constituency while looking at recent history.]

        “What makes you so undecided?” Answer: I am an independent with a conservative lean, yet have liberal views important to me. Conflict.

        For now, those liberal views, are personal having no desire to share them in a public arena. I am working them out for ‘myself, today.

        I appreciate your sharing on social issues. Noted!

        Just for info purposes, as stated continuously:

        I am against abortion, but pro-choice

        As far as the border goes I am unhappy with the direction it is going today, even though I have empathy for those crossing the border.

        Gender dysphoria is not important to me

        Note: Social issues is not in my scheduled topics to delve into at this time. Again, I am at this time focused on the bottom line, which is the economy with its elements importantly the debt.

  5. Credence2 profile image77
    Credence2posted 4 months ago

    You can spare a cigar, I trust?
                     
    Let us imagine that this cigar...
                       
    ...is the time traveler.                   

    The lever in front of him
    controls movement.
                     
    Forward pressure (D) sends it
    into the future...
                       
    ...backward pressure, (R) into the past.
                       
    The harder the pressure,
    the faster it travels.

    As a student of American History, I am not enticed by the past and would leave it as the proper preserve for Republicans and Conservatives and thus, I vote accordingly.

    1. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      Thanks, Cred!

      I both got a giggle from your comment as well consider it great food for thought. I shall say I am weak with history paying attention to the politics/social issues forum while learning. Many a time over the recent five years my curiosity has been piqued with history sending me on journeys of discovery.

      However, I get the point you made!

      Sharing a thought, reflectively, what flashed into my mind reading your comment was something Ken said. Where he said it I am unsure.

      Essentially he said you can't get a dinosaur to change its ways and to invest in the future instead. He used the controversy as well as the compare/contrast of Biden and Musk to elaborate his point. Or, my memory is failing me, which it does at times.

      1. Credence2 profile image77
        Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Ken and I have had interesting discussions. The dinosaur is extinct because it ceased to evolve.

        When I listen to him speak of a return to a greater domestication of women, I have to ask what other accommodations to the past is he pining for? There was a time where me and mine were considered fit for only shining shoes for a living. How far back or how fast does the Right want to reverse the lever? That is not the kind of dinosaur whose continued existence can my receive my vote.

        Musk has shown me much nastiness in the deportment department within the last week or two, he is hardly the ideal.

        1. tsmog profile image84
          tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Thanks, Cred!

          Reading that comment I was perplexed last night considering it. I get the point made!

          Introspectively, regard how far back in the past one goes, my first thought was Social Security and Medicare, both of importance to me. I reflected on if it is eliminated that would be approximately $3 trillion dollar savings per year. A little dent in the debt, yet what is the social cost?

          Next, remaining introspective, I considered cause and effect. I have the benefits of Social Security and Medicare due to Democrats. A question is do I owe any loyalty to the Democrats because of that? hmmm . . .

          1. Credence2 profile image77
            Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

            TSmog, would you really be comfortable living in what could even be considered the recent past, say 1924?

            You can't really understand politics without an understanding of history. Would you find 1924 and uncomfortable tight fit?

            1. abwilliams profile image68
              abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Gosh, how about we just go back to the recent past...right before the fundamental transformation at the hands of the not-so-dynamic-duo of Obama-Biden?!
              The U.S. was in a good place (B.O.B.) They couldn't have that!!

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Surprise me, AB...

                Would you really be satisfied with just going back to 2007? i would have though that conservatives would be more comfortable with 1907 for the type of world they REALLy want to go back to.

                1. abwilliams profile image68
                  abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  Not sure what kind of world you think I want, but I am sure that what is in your head isn't what is in my heart.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    Perhaps......

            2. tsmog profile image84
              tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Appreciate the comment, Cred!

              First, I agree knowing history does give one an advantage with understanding politics. I am not sure what you mean by your statement. I have confessed to you that I have a lack of knowledge in history elsewhere in another thread.

              Should I hang my head saying woe is me and not vote? Should I blindly follow someone who does have more history knowledge? Should I not participate in the political process?

              As far as would I be comfortable in 1924, frankly I don't know. Alas, once again I am confessing my lack of knowledge in history or at least have a cursory knowledge of it.

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                I don't know, I am not much help. Don't be blind about anything ,your instincts are as fit as anyone else.

                It is just that we all have differing experiences to shape those values. I am not the one to ask.

                I am a staunch Democrat and left progressive, not even fond of the relatively ""squishy" left of center group who are dangerously accommodating toward Trump. I have no patience for the American Right trotting out apologists, excuses and hypocrites. The very reality of my existence and what I see as the threat is that I don't have the luxury to be "moderate" in the current struggle.

                1. tsmog profile image84
                  tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  Thanks for the response! I appreciate your position while within the forums it has given me perspective since joining in 2015. I applaud not only you, but everyone that I have learned from over those years. It has brought me perspective. So, thanks!

                  Yes, I agree, we look through a personal lens first. For me it kind of goes like the following:

                  me → significant other → immediate family → extended family → social circles (HP is an important one) → where I live (Mobile home park - community, to San Diego County) → my state (California) →  the greater society within the US → a world view

                  What is interesting for me is the interaction or connectivity of those. Also, the struggle of which to give the greater weight. In other words, the struggle of subjective vs. objective.

                  For instance, with my recent years with health issues I place a lot of weight on Health Care as an issue to consider with voting. I look at that two ways. Today and my history.

                  [Edit: Also, Facebook, is an online community I give weight to. However, for info purposes I painstakingly unfriended the people that were too heavy into politics. I look at FB as being a safe place.]

          2. profile image0
            savvydatingposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Tsmog, If you don’t believe me, maybe you’ll believe Thomas Sowell, author and economist. While he is not a fan of Trump’s manners, he knows Biden is even worse than Hilary, and that Trump would be the better pick. He believes that if the Democrats win the next election, we may reach the point of no return.
            https://www.westernjournal.com/sowell-b … an-empire/

            Also, to understand real history, how Democrats skew numbers, and how easily they dismiss empirical evidence that does not fit their vision, as well as how simplistic their “logic” really is, you might consider reading Sowells book, The Vision of the Anointed.

            1. tsmog profile image84
              tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Thanks for the info Savvy! I admire Sowell's intellect. I will check to see if that book is available at my local library. My, oh my . . . my reading list just grows and grows.

              As to the article, informative, but is not persuasive for my vote. What did catch my attention is a post I made at the debt OP/Thread I created this morning. I'll post it again here.

              I stated; "The Hill offered a compare/contrast for Trump vs. Biden on debt."

              I posted an excerpt from the article following next:

              "The Biden White House dishonestly blames GOP-led tax cuts under Donald Trump for “90% of the debt increase.” For the record: under the Trump administration, the debt went up significantly only after Congress passed relief measures aimed at keeping the COVID-impaired economy afloat. In his first three years, the debt rose by $3.3 trillion — too much, for sure, but nothing compared to the $6.25 trillion jump in debt during Biden’s first three years. And there has been no emergency to excuse Biden’s spending."

              It is from:

              Joe Biden’s extremist spending is a danger to the US by The Hill (Jan 4, 2024). Consider it is an opinion article. Also, The Hill per Allsides Media bias places them at Center edging 'Lean Left'.

              https://thehill.com/opinion/finance/438 … to-the-us/


              I will verify that at a later time as far as a binary choice between Trump vs. Biden. As far as party vs party I am continuing my research.

              1. tsmog profile image84
                tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Edit: Just checked seeing the link didn't work. Oops! The link next works.

                https://thehill.com/opinion/finance/438 … to-the-us/

              2. profile image0
                savvydatingposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                I urge you to find the book. You can also buy it outright. Paying for Sowell’s knowledge is worth a few extra dollars. He doesn’t make statements lightly.
                Meanwhile, here is a video about Basic Economics featuring Sowell:

                https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=bOMksnSaAJ4

                1. tsmog profile image84
                  tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  Thanks Savvy! The book is out of my reach, so the library is where I will have to get it from. But, our local library sources from all of San Diego county, so who knows. Thanks for the video link book marked for a later time. I will watch it.

                2. tsmog profile image84
                  tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  Savvy, I just watched the video. Thanks for recommending it. I did notice it was from back in 2010 allowing me to book mark for a compare/contrast with what happen since then when/if time is of avail. I think it is important to consider that with the references Sowell used. Otherwise some of what they discussed I knew and a greater portion didn't like the history references.

                  1. Ken Burgess profile image76
                    Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    I think it is going to be very hard to avoid a recession this year.

                    I think the violence in the Middle East, and even Russian border, is going to spiral out of control.

                    The incompetence and arrogance of this Administration will shine during 2024.

                    Many, many tens of millions of Americans will vote for Trump, a continuation of a failed Biden Administration will scare the majority into flocking in his direction.

        2. GA Anderson profile image88
          GA Andersonposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Damn, all these years I thought Dinosaurs became extinct due to some great meteorological event. And those scientists who said some of today's birds are (or, likely are) evolutionary descendants of dinosaurs had me convinced too.

          But, the analogy might work if "dinosaurs" were considered as representing ideas, and, as a basket of subspecies rather than an all-encompassing whole.

          "Return to a greater domestication of women" A guess, based on your past thoughts, assumes there is an 'abortion' tie-in to your view of the conservatives' domestication efforts—as in returning to a breeding stock status?

          As for Musk . . . Bless your heart, he does have a problem with 'deportment' doesn't he?

          Smile bud, like that CNN pundit said; "It was your turn in the barrel."  ;-)

          GA

          1. Credence2 profile image77
            Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

            GA, to answer your first point, I thought that I read somewhere that  there  are more than a few amphibian and reptile species alive during the period of the dinosaurs that are with us today, so if they could could survive the cataclysm, why not the dinosaurs?

            Dinosaur is representive of  ideas and the people who hold them. The very concept of MAGA represents that subset being of a greater  size and having more influence than some would have us believe.

            On the domestication of women thing, when speaking with Ken about his ideas, I got the impression that we talking about more than abortion rights but about a belief that women are being brainwashed to avoid lives of home and hearth in favor of entering the labor force. Ken laments as to why men have been experiencing depression, their numbers decreasing in college and their role model of the sole provider is being threatened, as an assault on their masculity, which in my opinion is more an illusion and quite Flintstone as no one wants to live under those sort of restraints involuntarily, anymore. Pushing the "lever" forward should reflect  a society open to people being and doing whatever they like based on their qualifications, determination and work. No one should be proscribed to do anything. Pushing the lever firmly in reverse is just the opposite, whalebone corsets, with exclusion from work outside of the home, not being allowed to vote, etc.

            So, which direction are you going to pull the lever?

            As for Elon Musk, it proves that once people get a little money they believe that they pronounce for GoD himself.

            https://finance.yahoo.com/news/elon-mus … 55785.html

            Yes, my turn in the barrel, let's do it again sometime.....

            1. Ken Burgess profile image76
              Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              My position on women is not a position, it was an explanation of why we see the society we do today.

              Why we see the demise of marriage, the demise of families, and the marginalization of men in general in our media sources, particularly Hollywood catering to messaging of empowerment to women at the expense of men.

              These social changes I have explained.

              The Pill.  Computers and Air Conditioning.  The ease with which our Western World now runs... built of course on the backs of hard working men, but now that it has been built, they can be cast aside and the women set free, so to speak.

              Hard Times will create strong men... we are not in hard times right now... we are in the easiest times of human history, we will see how long that lasts.

              It is my belief that the Western Civilization turn in evolution is fast bringing about its own demise, the whole Enlightenment, Open Borders, be what you feel you are...

              All very dependent on a high tech system of operation, with an abundance of cheap energy and food supplies to keep everyone that is part of it fat and happy. 

              The amount of people with their hands out, expecting more and more from 'the system' for little or no amount of effort put in to procure it is growing.  People pursuing their fantasies and expecting others to indulge them is becoming normalized, even lauded, its an unsustainable system that is not bound by logic or hard work.

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Understood, Ken, but the explanation is YOUR explanation, it may well not be only one or even the correct one. There is the rising costs of living requiring both adults to work. It is a increasingly technological society where the skills relevant for the rock quarry or coal mine is not relevant today. Another apt quote from the "Time Machine", "time changes space".



                Would you be willing to go into the time machine and turn the lever just how far backward? Did you believe that the previous state of affairs that you go on about was any more of a cohesive and harmonious world? Me and mine were not satisfied, so where does the peace and harmony come in? White men are quick to take the credit for everything in the modern world, even though a great deal of contribution by others have been carefully concealed. Is everyone else relegated to mere slavery because men "worked so hard"? Ken, everybody is free, that is what it means to push the time machine lever forward.

                This idea of handouts and lack of work ethic is an old refrain that I heard when I was growing up to define young people in the 1960s and 1970s, so what else is new? It has sustained itself in the past 50 -60 years.

                People pursuing fantasies?

                As a man, I will do what is necessary to survive but enslaving others is not an option, as I have seen that movie, too,

                1. gmwilliams profile image84
                  gmwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  Cred, it is a far different societal paradigm now.  What has been defined as the middle class is no more.  Middle class is passe. In order to live comfortably at the present time, one has to be at least a millionaire or in the high six figures.  The low six figures is now working class.   Anyone is who even earning in the middle to high five figures is considered poor & anyone earning less than $40,000 per annum is impoverished.

                  Society has changed.  A Bachelor's Degree is now equivalent to a high school education.  In order to get a starting professional job, one has to have at the minimum, a Master's Degree.  This has been predicted 40 years ago.  The old society is dead.  You are correct about this & I concur.  It is futile to live in the past.

                  Low level white collared & blue collared jobs are being phased out by computerization.  Even in the 1970s, manual jobs were being phased out.   Society is constantly changing & sometimes evolving.  There are evolving definitions of relationships, marriage, & family.   The 50s paradigm of what is marriage & family is no longer relevant in this advanced technological age.  Increasing education is the rule.  Either one obtains advanced education or h/she will be left behind.

                  While I state that inflation is out of control & must be curtailed, even corrected-I know civilization is becoming increasingly computerized which I welcome.   I embrace postmodernity.  While there are those who assert about the changing work ethic among younger generations, the latter don't & won't succumb to the idea of job loyalty & job security.  They will do what is in their best career interest.  They realize that from previous generations that corporations view them as the bottom line to be disposed of at will.  The idea of work ethic is changing-there is nothing wrong w/demanding respect & acknowledgement in the workplace.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    Oddly enough, i agree with most of the points that you have made here.

                    When you once said that it took 6 figure incomes to be truly middle class, at one time I scoffed at it. Well, no more, the difference today from years past is that there is no such thing as an inexpensive American retreat where it is a bargain to live. You are going to pay, whether you live in Wyoming or Manhattan. I read an article discussing Californians leaving the state over the relatively high cost of living, preferring Texas for example. Well, what you don't pay in no-income tax states you make up for in property taxes, like Texas.

                    The Master Degree requirement was predicted 40 years ago was not in force then, while It may well be today.

                    Technology has made the old societal models obsolete. So much of what were considered professions, a great deal of the information could be now obtained by any savvy Googler
                    .

                    Just like in real estate you are only paying realtors because they have the licenses, it is not like you really need them to sort desired properties out for you. That was my case, anyway.

                    People are talking about a return to a time that never really existed as if it were some sort of shangri-la. What they saw on their TV screens during the 1950s was an illusion anyway. TV was not so much a window on the world as it was more a funhouse mirror.


                    Ken and and spoke about men dropping out of college, Why are they dropping out, while woman are increasing in attendance? If I had a daughter, I would teach her to acquire a skill and profession and when she desires to mate, it will be based upon respect for her talents and ability beyond the kitchen and the bedroom. I don't like being vulnerable and I would teach mine the same.

                    The future will demand that we all get better, but isn't that what everyone's "future" entailed? That was the reality for my grandparents who had similar challenges relative to their time and place. The pension arrangement that I received from an earlier period that has long since been superseded, will not come again. The new generation will no longer owe their soul to the company store and are smart enough to be prepared to be found expendable and resist being vulnerable under those circumstances. They will assume risks associated with that that I did not face.

                    The past is an ugly and dismal place, who wants to live there?

            2. GA Anderson profile image88
              GA Andersonposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Yeah, I understood the 'dinosaur' thing. I was just poking at the
              'all' inference of the wording.

              After a thought or two, maybe the dinosaur analogy isn't right for a label on extremist ideas (your MAGA grouping). Dinosaur seems more related to old and outdated ideas. They might not be right for the times, but they also might not be wrong at the core. Most extremist views are bad, period. Times don't justify them, ever. (in the political sense of the discussion)

              For instance; I could find a lot to agree with in many of the 'patriotic' and "Conservative' concepts that MAGA says drive their efforts. But, that agreement is like the old saying "It looks great on paper, but fails in application,'

              As another 'for instance, your views on what the conservatives want to revert to, re. women, are extremist ones. "Barefoot and in the kitchen' is not how I see the conservative view, even though it's probably a safe bet there are some conservative Neanderthal extremists that fit your characterization.

              A Conservative dinosaur view would be the value of a nurturing mother at home doing all the old-time 'mother' things. Now, that's an outdated idea because times change. We still think a mother is best for the job, and that that job is critical to childhood development, but we adapt and accept a nurturing father could also fill the bill. And, that some women can be a good mother and have an outside career too. So maybe that is one of the old 'dinosaur' ideas that at least evolved into something instead of becoming extinction-worthy.

              I think your view of Musk is skewed by your ideology - he's a conservative so he must be bad. The few 'slams' against him: the Jewish retweet, the HBC retweet, et al., that I checked out weren't exactly as portrayed. For instance, the HBC/lower intelligence slam because of a retweet about DEI practices in pilot training and hiring. His retweet comment was about factoring in DEI as a priority over ability. He wasn't commenting about the poster's HBC comments — as I read it.

              On the Jewish retweet slam, he admitted it was one of the dumbest things he had ever said, and then went to Israel to apologize in person.

              The point is that I don't think you would have such a negative perception of him if you looked beyond the headlines. After all, he voted Democrat until 2022. He supported Clinton, Obama, and Biden. He was a party fav. You guys must have done something really bad to make him change religions.

              GA

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Their extremist ideas are an embrace of old and outdated concepts which they are anxious to bring back to center stage. When adherents profess a preference for a leader who is willing the "break the rules" so as to give them what they want, that is contrary to Democratic traditions. Is that not a revert to the lure of tyrants of a past period?

                What MAGA says and what MAGA actually promotes are two differing things. Hyper patriotism is the linch key for every Right wing movement. If that is a virtue, it is the only one they have.

                I never had a problem with domestication and motherhood and all that, it is that people should not be compelled to assume dinosaur gender roles in the interests of what some would say would be a more cohesive society. Both proposed mom and dad can decide between themselves how they are going to raise the young.

                First of all the conservatives that you continue to reference as reasonable and moderate, is, in this MAGA (Republican) world, a dinosaur, not so  much representing old and outdated ideas, but more like just simply being extinct.

                Musk reminds me of Nikki Haley and her faut pas. Her not stating that slavery was the cause of the Civil War and her efforts at damage control to the whole world that knew better, all the way down to her confessions of going to school with black kids when young, etc. What was going on in her or Musk's mind to make such statements in the first place?

                Musk got on the GOP train that favors the very wealthy over the rest of us. Being the richest man in the world would prompt one to see the world in a different way, and to identify threats to that wealth and power heretofore not considered.

                I am still learning while he has made a negative impression on me, I am not beyond taking a closer look.

                1. GA Anderson profile image88
                  GA Andersonposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  I'm already out on a limb, so I'm sticking to the concepts first and maybe the details next.

                  You say "their extremist ideas are an embrace of old and outdated concepts which they are anxious to bring back to center stage."

                  Excepting Trump-specific stuff: election denial, J6, lying, etc.,  pick a couple of MAGA specifics and let's look at them. (The Freedom Caucus platform might give you some ideas)

                  Yep, as in almost all ideological battles, what MAGA says is often different from what they do.

                  Innocently, what dinosaur gender ideas are people being compelled to assume? There is a rhetorical aspect to that question: it excludes the transgender issue.

                  And to the extinction of the Moderate conservatives . . . if we can get through the next 4 years I think you will see a big change (evolution rather than extinction) in the power of the Independent vote and Moderate Republican conservatives. The extremists on both sides have a chance to get what they want in this election and Middle America is going to grade them in 2026.

                  GA

                  [ADDED]

                  "Musk got on the GOP train that favors the very wealthy over the rest of us."

                  I don't think you know enough about him to legitimately hold that view.

                  Obviously, I have checked into his history (aka Googling) and see nothing to fit your description. He got rich in 1999 when he sold PayPal to ebay for $300 million. In 1995 he was sleeping in his office because he couldn't afford to rent another place. As noted before, he voted Democrat for 21 years (or at least since 2008) and he was 'rich' for at least 10 of those years. He abandoned the Dems in 2022. By your statement he stepped caring about us guys and became an evil rich guy in a short two years.

                  He doesn't look like he's that easy to manipulate, so we're back at the original question; What did you guys do to cause him to abandon you?

                  I know I'm going overboard on this issue, but I'm just trying to help you out bud, your Musk perception is wrong and you would know it if you looked. And you know, when one is wrong about one perception, folks might wonder if you're as wrong on some other perceptions.
                  Unsupportable statements, even when opinions, still make you look bad. I'm just trying to save you some dings. ;-)

                  GA

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    I allow for the possibility of looking into Musk further, with jaundiced eye, rest assured. I will apply my judgement and come to a decision, fairly arrived at.

                    But is it possible for the all prescient GA to be wrong about opinions as well? Can that even be a possibility? For instance, i think that  we will  be lucky to get through the next year let alone the next 4 in the current political climate. Where do you get the confidence that it all this Trumper stuff is going to go away? Gifted insight? What do you think that the Dems did to offend the richest man on earth?

                    I will check on this so called Freedom Caucus and see if what they say matches their strategy on the ground....

                    By the way, I understand that Trump was once a Democrat, any grand theories as to why he went "turncoat"?

  6. Valeant profile image86
    Valeantposted 4 months ago

    This is an interesting thread.  The two sides trying to swing Tsmog to vote for their candidate.  The main issue seems to be the economy for him, as noted in the original post. 

    I'll note that the economy tends to get stronger the longer a Democrat is in office.  It improved under Obama, recovering from where it ended under Bush.  It has improved under Biden, recovering from where it ended under Trump. 

    Others have put out the issues that are important to them.  Myself and Kathleen are in the pro-democracy camp until MAGA candidates are no longer running.  Others want the border to be a concern or woke causes, or favor the United States becoming a country such as Russia, China, or North Korea with a leader above the laws.

    Personally, when one of the two candidates is telling everyone that he should be immune from our laws, and his lawyer argues that killing his political opposition should be acceptable as long as his allies do not remove him from office, that's pretty disqualifying.  Especially when the base of voters sides with him over those allies, meaning - he owns their political futures and, therefore, their votes, then we are at a place where democracy is going to end if that person gets elected.  Let alone that candidate tried to overturn the last election that he lost, using legal tactics devoid of facts, using illegal means such as intimidation and forgery, and then organizing and inciting a domestic terror attack on his own Congress to try and stop the certification of the election he lost, I just cannot understand how any patriotic American could vote for such a treasonous and criminal candidate.

    1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
      Kathleen Cochranposted 8 weeks agoin reply to this

      Valeant: Proud to be counted in your ranks.

  7. Valeant profile image86
    Valeantposted 4 months ago

    I'd be shocked if gender issues were anywhere in the top-eight of the issues.  Democracy, Abortion/Healthcare, and Competent Governance will likely be the issues the left will try and frame.  Immigration, Government Overreach, and Foreign Policy will be the ones for the right.

    Both sides will try and frame the economy and corruption, with Trump's upcoming trials taking center stage in the latter.  Neither side can really tout fiscal responsibility or a great record on Covid.  Age favors neither candidate as Biden has too many senior moments and Trump cannot remember world leaders or what city he's in sometimes.

    The right will ding Biden for chaos in foreign policy, inflation, and Hunter.  The left will ding Trump for his actions to overturn the 2020 election, eliminating Roe, and his desire to turn the United States into Russia or North Korea from a leadership standpoint.

    The left doesn't want Biden, but they don't want Trump more.  The right doesn't want Biden, and about half of them actually want Trump.  The never-Trump contingent is stronger than the never-Biden group.  The wildcards being Latinos and women in 2024.

    1. Credence2 profile image77
      Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

      I am as left as they come and I want Biden as there really is not a viable alternative right now. And despite all the whine from conservatives, he has done well under the circumstances. He and his administration need to be more aggressive in the selling the product,

  8. Credence2 profile image77
    Credence2posted 4 months ago

    What supposedly is to be "sure thing" may not be as certain after all.

    A couple of articles as just food for thought....

    https://www.salon.com/2024/01/17/domina … -campaign/

    https://www.salon.com/2024/01/17/meghan … omination/

    1. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

      Great articles as you suggested for food for thought. I get the Salon's newsletter both general and politics. The Onion too. That, to me, offset's getting The Daily Caller.

      The first article had great observations and supported an earlier post by you stating only 15% voted. Revealing. The second article left me thinking, "Of course Trump will win the nomination, so why the BS about Haley. Was it needed?" Overall I saw it more as criticism of McCain.

      1. Valeant profile image86
        Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Trump's plan to go after Haley in New Hampshire has the unintended effect to alienate her voters.  Might be hard to get them back when Trump's attacks are usually steeped in racism (already brought out the birtherism attack on her in Iowa) and demeaning insults (like bird-brain).

        1. abwilliams profile image68
          abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          You don’t give the voting public very much credit, do you?

          1. Valeant profile image86
            Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Considering 70% of one party still thinks there was fraud in 2020, why should anyone?  Trump has a large segment of the population brainwashed.

            1. abwilliams profile image68
              abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              You DO have a point, we DO have a President Biden, you may be onto something.

              1. Valeant profile image86
                Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                It could have been president anyone.  Over 50% of Biden voters said they were voting against Trump.  Guess that's what happens when a president lies to the American people about the dangers of a deadly pandemic.

                Trump was on pace for a re-election through 2019.  He was bombastic, but kept the economy flowing from where Obama left it, albeit by massive deficit spending thanks to a tax cut that everyone knew would not pay for itself.  But then a national emergency hit, and he tried to weave one of his fake realities instead of just being honest.  Those lies got Americans killed and exposed his inability to handle a true emergency and were ultimately his downfall.  I wrote an article about it, how Trump's inability to address Covid would give us president Biden.  Everyone could see it was about removing someone in over his head, not about who the replacement would actually be.

                1. abwilliams profile image68
                  abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  You aren't doing the American voting public any favors, it may be time to switch gears.

                  1. Valeant profile image86
                    Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    Understandable, the Trump cult is not allowed to talk about any of his failures.  I get it.  Best to change the topic.

          2. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
            Kathleen Cochranposted 2 months agoin reply to this

            abwilliams: I give the voting public a lot of credit. In seven of the last eight presidential elections a majority have voted for the democrat candidate whether the electoral college gave that candidate the victory or not.
            Biden, Clinton, Obama, Obama, Gore, Clinton, Clinton.

        2. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

          So why does he have such an abundance of support? You may want to ask yourself that. He is well-liked, and loved by so many Americans. Yet so hated by some that they would vote for a man that clearly can't do the job, for many reasons. Hate never conquered love in the end. In my view, those who voted for Biden have done our Nation a great disservice.  Were they brainwashed or just motivated by hate?

          1. Valeant profile image86
            Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Abundance?  Last time he ran, he won Iowa with 97% of support.  This time, he only got just over 50%.  You may want to ask yourself what he did to turn off 46% of his supporters and why he is not liked at all by so many Americans.

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Yet we saw this --    Trump's margin of victory in Iowa GOP caucuses smashed previous record

              Washington — Former President Donald Trump's margin of victory in Monday's Iowa caucuses smashed the previous record for Republican presidential candidates, underscoring the broad support he attracted in the first contest of the 2024 nominating process.
              https://www.cbsnews.com/news/trump-iowa … f-victory/

              He will most likely do very well in the upcoming caucus too.

              1. Valeant profile image86
                Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Only a record if you consider him a new candidate.  If you look at him as the incumbent of the Republican Party, which considering he was the party nominee in each of the last two elections, then this might be a record low for an incumbent.

                Charlie Sykes and his guest discuss this very point:
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-mp_3zGO00

                1. Ken Burgess profile image76
                  Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  The information as to the 2016 Iowa Primary:

                  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Iowa … l_caucuses

                  Showing a significant increase in popularity for Trump compared to then.

                  I don't think 2020 tells much of a tale, there really wasn't a campaign against him, if there are no alternative choices, then getting nearly 100% should be expected.

                  https://www.washingtonpost.com/election … /iowa-gop/

                  1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                    Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    Thanks for the link... Makes perfect sense. I think he will do well across the board.  Republicans are eager to win in 2024. Most feeling if we don't pull a win, we are looking at the end of America as we know it, and like it.

                    I expect more problems to hit this administration in the coming month, and perhaps Biden will be hosted by impeachment. However, I bet on Biden to create many more serious issues shortly.

    2. Readmikenow profile image95
      Readmikenowposted 4 months ago

      I think the two issues where biden is weakest is illegal immigration and inflation. 

      Economics always has had a strong influence in the way people vote.

      I have friends from different countries contact me about biden.  He LOOKS bad.  He falls down.  He looks confused as if he has no idea where he is at much of the time.  Then there are all of his cognitive issues that seem to appear when he's speaking.  I've been asked "Why did Americans elect a president with dementia?"  "Why did Americans want a president who is so old?"  K. Harris is just a joke to people in other countries.  Friends in Australia and New Zealand have contests to imitate her laugh.  They all enjoy mocking her ridiculous word salads. 

      It's embarrassing.

      1. Valeant profile image86
        Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        2022 could have easily been about economics.  But you know what issues dominated?  Election denying candidates and a woman's right to choose.  Since 2022, the economy has gotten much better, while immigration has gotten worse.  So what you've really got left is immigration.

        I agree that Biden is too old.  But people will take too old over a rapist and dictator-wannabe.

        1. Readmikenow profile image95
          Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Inflation is still a very significant issue.  Especially when you compare it to the previous administration.  The cost of everything is more expensive since biden took office.

          That is a fact.

          I believe it will be a major issue in the 2024 election.

          1. Valeant profile image86
            Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Only among the far-right that refuses to acknowledge that the United States is now a world leader of a global problem (inflation) that stemmed from the pandemic that began under that previous administration.  Just another example of the partisan blame-games they play to ignore any culpability from their own party.  That is also a fact.

            1. Credence2 profile image77
              Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Stealing my Government away from me, or ridiculous handsmaiden tale, anti-abortion policies   "Trumps" the rising price of a pound of ground beef.

              People, ultimately, will be smart enough to see the magnitude of what is at stake, at least I hope so.

              1. Valeant profile image86
                Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Maybe obstructing justice in trying to hoard the nation's classified documents will endear him to new voters.  Maybe inciting a domestic terror attack on his own Congress to try and prevent the peaceful transfer of power will expand his voter base.  Perhaps he's appealing to more women by taking away their right to body autonomy and telling them they have less rights than men or even dead people.  When a jury finds that he raped a woman with his fingers, that should expand the bloc of people willing to vote for him.

            2. Readmikenow profile image95
              Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              I would disagree and say that inflation under biden is a direct result of his energy policies as well as economic policies.  He has over regulated several industries. The man even wants to ban gas stoves, for regular Americans, K. Harris has one, so that says it all.

              1. Valeant profile image86
                Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                The man does not want to ban gas stoves.  A Commissioner at the US Consumer Product Safety Commission said anything is on the table to protect people from respiratory issues from indoor gas emissions and the right took that as Biden banning gas stoves.  One, of many, great examples of the right creating something for Biden that is just not true in any way, shape, or form.

                https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/biden … te-change/

                And if you actually look at when gas prices spiked to their highest point, it was when Russia announced their intention to invade Ukraine.  Hardly a fault of Biden's.

                1. Readmikenow profile image95
                  Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  "Russia announced their intention to invade Ukraine.  Hardly a fault of Biden's."

                  THAT is debatable.  biden was seen by the russians as a weak leader and they were correct. His weakness is what probably led to their bold action. I don't think many Americans understand how the Russians think.  Projection of power is the only thing they respect. 

                  The gas stoves don't really matter because the house passed a law so they can't be banned, so the gas stove of K. Harris is safe.

                  1. Valeant profile image86
                    Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    The gas stoves claim matters because you just brought it up despite it being patently false.  You attributed it to Biden because you fell for the misinformation, a common theme in these forums.

                    And Russia 'probably' acted because of their perception of Biden?  That's more your own perception than theirs.  If anything Biden strengthening the US relationship with Ukraine was more the reason, as ken tries to convince you of often as the real reason.

                  2. Sharlee01 profile image87
                    Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    I believe that if we had a president who displayed strength and set clear boundaries when Russia approached the Ukrainian border, we might have averted the current war. In my view, President Biden's leadership has been characterized as weak and lacking intelligence, contributing to a series of issues. It seems evident that his perceived ineptness is becoming increasingly apparent.

                    Moreover, Biden's approach has allegedly emboldened Iran in the Middle East, leading to heightened aggression that may result in conflicts drawing in the U.S. The challenges in the Red Sea region are anticipated to contribute to rising inflation once again. Some argue that his performance warrants impeachment, as Russia historically responds to strength rather than weakness, and diplomatic gestures to rogue nations are viewed as ineffective and taken advantage of.

        2. Readmikenow profile image95
          Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Most congressional, Senate are local elections.

          Things change when it's a national election.

        3. IslandBites profile image90
          IslandBitesposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I agree that Biden is too old.  But people will take too old over an old rapist and dictator-wannabe.

          Fixed it.

          1. Ken Burgess profile image76
            Ken Burgessposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            I don't understand the comment, yes, Biden has been accused of rape, and yes he acts like a dictator-wannabe... so what is the point here?

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Thank you.

            2. Valeant profile image86
              Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Was Biden found by a jury of his peers to have sexually abused a woman - meaning to have used his fingers to have penetrated a woman's vagina without her consent?  Has he in any way been proven to been involved with any of the Trump legal cases?  The answer to both questions is no, meaning that both claims were inventions not grounded in facts.

              1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                I recommend you consider watching the interview that discusses Tara Reids' accusation against Biden, particularly the distinct differences between her claims and those of Carroll. The media appears to overlook certain crucial aspects.

                The evidence includes a call made by Tara's mother to the Larry King show shortly after the incident, recounting her daughter's rape by a "well-known Senator." Additionally, there is a video account of Tara's neighbor providing a firsthand recollection of what Tara disclosed soon after the incident.

                In Carroll's case, she asserted entering a dressing room with Trump at Bergdorf Goodman. However, the store has and still has locked dressing rooms, and customers are assisted by representatives upon entering the store. While these details may raise doubts about her story, Carroll had multiple witnesses supporting her accusations.

                Both women deserve to be heard, and if one is believed so should be the other in a fair society.

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4keY4YNGTTg

                1. Valeant profile image86
                  Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  You act as if no one has done their own research about Reade's accusations, even though we've discussed the topic multiple times before.  The different being that Reade's situation did not happen in a state that allowed her to bring her case to a trial like Carroll's did.  Reade did not testify under oath, and she has many inconsistencies that are troubling to her narrative, such as bragging about knowing Biden to others and speaking positively about their relationship to establish credibility in the years following when she claims the incident occurred.

                  1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                    Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    Tara did report her concerns to her superiors, but unfortunately, they were disregarded. Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, and I was simply presenting the accusations from both women's perspectives. It seems there might be some selective thinking on this matter. While the cases share similarities, the inclusion of Tara's mother's call adds credibility to one of the accounts.

                    Additionally, Caroll's narrative appears questionable due to the department store's strict policies. Familiarity with the store's practices would highlight that shoppers are not allowed to wander freely.

                    It's clear that I have reservations about Biden's behavior, finding it somewhat unsettling, especially with numerous accounts from Democrats at public events. There seems to be a recurring pattern of him invading personal space, particularly with a tendency towards smelling hair, as evidenced by multiple instances.

                    1. IslandBites profile image90
                      IslandBitesposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                      "selective thinking"

                      I see.

              2. Readmikenow profile image95
                Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                I believe you're referring to a civil trial and not a criminal trial.  Big difference.

                1. Valeant profile image86
                  Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  So the jury in the E. Jean Carroll did not find that Trump sexually abused her?  Even though the judge said exactly that.

                  “As the court explained in its recent decision denying Mr Trump’s motion for a new trial on damages and other relief [in the New York case] … based on all of the evidence at trial and the jury’s verdict as a whole, the jury’s finding that Mr Trump ‘sexually abused’ Ms Carroll implicitly determined that he forcibly penetrated her digitally – in other words, that Mr Trump in fact did ‘rape’ Ms Carroll as that term commonly is used and understood in contexts outside of the New York penal law.” - Judge Kaplan

                  1. Readmikenow profile image95
                    Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                    This is not a criminal conviction.  This is a jury decision for damages.  Ms. Carroll was out after money and nothing more.  I will admit, she did get it.  Remember a criminal trial has to convict beyond a reasonable doubt.  ALL of the jurors must agree.  In a civil trial, the majority of jurors must agree.

                    There is so much wrong with that trial, I won't waste my time going into it.  One thing is there was never even any solid evidence she had even met President Donald Trump. I could go on and on and on...but when you objectively look at the trial, it was a shame.

                    1. Valeant profile image86
                      Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                      Again, more misinformation.  The jury in the federal civil case had to be unanimous, and it was.  There was plenty of evidence that the two had met each other, including photographs where Trump pointed at E. Jean Carroll and mistook her for his own wife, so that claim is more misinformation.  It gets tiring correcting all your false claims, I swear.

                    2. IslandBites profile image90
                      IslandBitesposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                      One thing is there was never even any solid evidence she had even met President Donald Trump.

                      Maybe you're right. But then again, there's that photo of them toghether where Trump mistook his "not his type" accuser for his wife. Ha.

      2. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Realistically, people from afar look at what is evident, without bias.  In my view, Biden is incapable of being the President, he has proven this time after time.

        1. Readmikenow profile image95
          Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I get sent clips from Sky News in Australia.  You should see what their commentators say about biden and harris. Ukrainians like that he supports them but fear he isn't strong enough to stand up to Putin.  They worry that he may back down to Putin eventually.  biden's presidency has caused significant stress in a lot of countries in Eastern Europe.

          1. Valeant profile image86
            Valeantposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Sky News...Australis's version of Fox News.  Circular logic.  Also, the site that Alex Jones goes to back up his own conspiracy theories.

            1. Readmikenow profile image95
              Readmikenowposted 4 months agoin reply to this

              I do like the Sky News segments called "Lefties Losing it."

        2. profile image0
          savvydatingposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Understatement of the year. People are waking up. The propaganda machine of the radical left is not particularly popular amongst informed Americans. Americans are not born to be cogs in a wheel as the elites in Davos have told us we must be.
          The good news? Even Jamie Dimon, head of JP Morgan, has seen the writing on the wall, much to his chagrin… He’s now covering his bases:

          https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/busines … n/3425573/

    3. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 4 months ago

      Just a note that Biden's first three years in office is not the measure of debt under Biden, as he's only three months into his third year of budgets.  Measure the debt added from when his budget started in October of 2021, not January of 2021 as that was still Trump's budget.  Informed Americans would know this, I suppose.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks! Did not consider that. Learning!

        1. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

          I found a great link that gives some insight into the nation's debt. Why some presidents spent more. Trump would have done very well if he did not need to get us all through a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic.

          "Similarly in 2020, when the government's response to the outbreak of COVID-19 shut down businesses and caused a sharp rise in unemployment, Congress passed a $2.2 trillion stimulus bill called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which then-President Donald Trump signed into law in March 2020. The $2.2 trillion price tag makes it the largest financial rescue package in U.S. history.

          The CARES Act authorized direct payments to American families of $1,200 per adult plus $500 per child for households earning up to $75,000 annually."   

          "Top 5 Presidents Who Added to National Debt by Percentage

          Here are the top five presidents in modern U.S. history who recorded the largest percentage increase to national debt during their term(s) in office.

          1. Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933 to 1945)
          President Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) contributed the largest percentage increase to U.S. national debt to date. Roosevelt entered office when the United States was in the depths of the Great Depression, the longest economic recession in modern history. FDR’s New Deal, a series of government-funded programs to fight the devastating effects of the Great Depression, added significantly to the national debt.

          The U.S. national debt went up when FDR took office because of the New Deal.

          But the biggest contributor to the national debt under FDR was World War II.

          2. Woodrow Wilson (1913 to 1921)
          President Woodrow Wilson added to the U.S. national debt with funding war efforts during World War I. Under Wilson, U.S. government debt increased from over $2.9 billion in 1913 when he took office to over $23.9 billion when he left office in 1921.

          3. Ronald Reagan (1981 to 1989)
          President Ronald Reagan added over $1.6 trillion to the U.S. national debt.

          The actor-turned-president supported supply-side economics and believed government intervention reduced economic growth. His economic policies involved widespread tax cuts, decreased social spending, and more military spending. Reagan increased defense spending by 35% in his two terms as president.

          4. George W. Bush (2001 to 2009)
          President George W. Bush added about $4 trillion to the U.S. national debt.

          Military spending increased to record levels under Bush, due to launching the war in Afghanistan and War on Terror in response to the September 11, 2001 attacks, as well as the Iraq War in 2003. Additionally, Bush supported and signed into law significant tax cuts which contributed to increases in national debt. Bush and his administration also dealt with recessions in 2001 and 2008 (the Great Recession).

          5. Barack Obama (2009 to 2017)
          When looking at which president added the most to the national debt in dollar amounts, President Barack Obama takes the lead.

          Obama’s efforts to spur recovery from the Great Recession through his $832 billion stimulus package and $858 billion in tax cuts contributed to the rise in national debt during his presidency.

          Obama White House Archives. "The Economic Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Five Years Later,"
          https://www.investopedia.com/us-debt-by … ge-7371225

          It seems clear that the top five came up against circumstances that made it necessary to spend.

          Biden, perhaps not... He spent on unnecessary policies that we just could not afford at this time in our nation's growth.

          National Debt Continues to Rise Under President Biden
          The national debt has grown by over $6.24 trillion since Biden took office in 2021, largely driven by COVID-19 relief measures. If we measure from the start of the new fiscal year on October 1st, 2021 the debt has grown by over $5.56 trillion under President Biden.

          According to estimates by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Biden’s American Rescue Plan would add $1.9 trillion to the national debt by 2031

          Biden also signed a bipartisan infrastructure bill into law in November 2021. It provides funding for improvements to roads, bridges, public transit, drinking water, and expanded access to the internet, among other initiatives.

          The plan is estimated to cost around $375 billion over 10 years.

          Biden’s student loan forgiveness program, which would have canceled up to $20,000 of federally held student loan debt per borrower, was expected to cost the federal government about $305 billion total over 10 years, according to an estimate by the U.S. Department of Education.

          However, that plan was overturned by the Supreme Court in June 2023.

          A new plan called Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE), which officially became available to student loan borrowers in August 2023, will provide a new path to relief for borrowers.

          The plan could cost $230 billion over 10 years.

          Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, which aims to invest in green energy initiatives and reduce healthcare costs, could actually reduce the deficit by $58 billion over the next decade, according to an estimate by the CBO.

          Congressional Budget Office. “Estimated Budgetary Effects of Public Law 117-169, to Provide for Reconciliation under Title II of S. Con. Res.”

          I feel that perhaps fighting the expenditure would have been prudent until we could recover from the Pandemic expenditures. Some economists feel his overspending following the Pandemic caused the inflation we have felt now for three years. Inflation stats show progress, but we are left paying higher prices for just about everything we purchase, as well as high-interest rates.

          1. tsmog profile image84
            tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

            Thanks, I appreciate the info. Noted! Almost overwhelming. It will take some time to digest. As an aside, I am waiting for the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget release on Biden. They already published one for Trump.

            How Much Did President Trump Add to the Debt? (Jan 10, 2024)
            https://www.crfb.org/blogs/how-much-did … p-add-debt

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

              Hey, i was still adding LOL

              I am sorry for the lengthy post. I hope you will just check out the link when time permits. Good food for thought, and a very straightforward article that shows no bias, just facts.

              Hey, something to consider on your journey to decision-making.

              What I got out of the article --- I stood back and considered who spent what, whether was it necessary at the time, and how a president's decision on spending it affected the general economy.

              1. tsmog profile image84
                tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

                Thanks! As a novice learning I appreciate everything regard the debt. Interestingly the Investopedia article is on my Word document created for links about debt. So, we have similar agreement for a source. It is an educational article or at least for me it was.

                At the Debt OP/Thread I created the Committee for a Responsible Budget created a tool for balancing the budget as an interactive. Enlightening. And, could be said overwhelming. I gained great respect for all legislators reviewing and using it.

                Right now I am within the Defense category looking specifically at bettering Veteran health care and stiffening border security. Both are a cost. So, where to get the money is the question. Do I do it within Defense itself or elsewhere. BTW . . . I am pro-defense.

                As a learning tool it is sharpening my personal positions contrast cost/savings.

                Debt Fixer
                https://www.crfb.org/debtfixer

                1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                  Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

                  I feel we do it in the defense budget. The border has become a true defense problem in my view.  Allocation of cash for the border is one I can support, at this point over sending cash to offshore wars. However, I see some need to continue to support both Israel and Ukraine, it would be a humanitarian effort at this point. These two wars need to be diplomatically handled at this point. The devastation that is occurring is unbelievable.

    4. abwilliams profile image68
      abwilliamsposted 4 months ago

      Good for you,  after reading the following, I've more questions than answers.

      NEW YORK POST - Why did jurors find Trump liable of sexual abuse and not rape?

      Mixed verdict in Carroll suit explained
      By Priscilla DeGregory

      Jurors in the E. Jean Carroll lawsuit against Donald Trump found him liable of sexual abuse — and not rape — likely because they expected “Law & Order”-style forensic evidence to prove the more serious claim, legal experts told The Post on Wednesday.

      The Manhattan federal jury that awarded the “Ask E. Jean” advice columnist $5 million Tuesday decided that Carroll, 79, had proven her claim of sexual abuse in the alleged 1996 attack by Trump, 76, inside a Bergdorf Goodman fitting room.

      But they let the 45th president off the hook in her rape allegation — even though both claims were part of the same alleged incident.

      "So the question is why would this jury believe [her] but also reject something she is saying?”

      The panel — made up of three women and six men — might have expected to see evidence such as a rape kit, a police or doctors report, blood samples or fingerprints in a rape case, Levin said.

      “A lot of juries come in now having watched ‘CSI’ and ‘Law & Order’ and expect forensic evidence in any case,” he told The Post.

      “I think it’s not based on their disbelief of her, just that they were looking for some more evidence on such a heavy charge,” the lawyer continued.

      “But they believed her enough to give her an award on the other claims — the sexual assault and defamation claims.”

      Carroll testified at trial that she didn’t go to the police for myriad reasons, including that she feared what the real estate tycoon could do to her legally and professionally if she reported the alleged rape.

      Her friend Carol Martin also told jurors that she advised Carroll not to report the incident saying Trump would “bury” her.

      New York Law School Adjunct Professor Heather Cucolo told The Post, “people want to see physical evidence and we are obviously nowhere near that,” given the age of the case.

      “Physical evidence is hard to get in a criminal rape trial when you’re in real time — a couple days, a couple weeks out even,” she said.

      Carroll accused Trump of raping her in a Bergdorf Goodman fitting room in 1996.

      Long Island lawyer Andrew Lieb said he believed the biggest problem Carroll had on the rape claim “was that she couldn’t pinpoint the day [or] time.”

      “Without concrete details it’s really problematic,” Lieb said.

      Carroll told jurors that the incident took place most likely in the spring of 1996, but she couldn’t remember an exact date — despite racking her brain for the timeframe for years.

      She didn’t decide to come out with her allegations until after the #MeToo movement over two decades later, in June of 2019.

      1. tsmog profile image84
        tsmogposted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Thanks for that, AB. Noted! The part about evidence makes strong sense especially with the socialization impact with the crime dramas of TV. Isn't it amazing how much TV and movies influence our thinking. It does me while saying they do influence me. For instance, the popularity of crime dramas and real life investigations.

        With me, a favorite is watching 'Bones', and the old CSI shows. The application of science to solve a crime meaning concrete evidence. Who was it that said, "Follow the evidence"? Grissom?

    5. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 4 months ago

      What is interesting from the post on spending is that each of the presidents listed were in office for two terms.  Second, the right likes to omit Covid stimulus packages from Trump's tally, but keeps the one from Biden in his.  If you're going to omit for one, be consistent and do so for both as money was needed for the states to actually implement the delivery of the vaccines.  Lastly, doing debt by percentage, shields the figure for record debt added in one term, which is Trump's.

    6. abwilliams profile image68
      abwilliamsposted 4 months ago

      Strong evidence should always be present and he said/she said, scrutinized carefully!
      I think most of us understand that, without needing dramatization.

      As a woman, I have found myself in predicaments (in the past) which made me feel very uncomfortable.
      I walked away or caused a major ruckus.....whichever was necessary.

      I had my doubts about this woman, the first time I saw her interviewed, by Anderson Cooper - but I wasn't in the dressing room with them.
      None of us were!

      1. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

        To be truthful, I find it odd that women would enter a dressing room with a stranger. I also find it odd that I know for a fact that Bergdorf Goodman dressing rooms are locked, and they don't let you past the door without a sales assistant greeting, and assisting with one's shopping visit. It's the most exclusive luxury fashion retailer in the world.  I do not feel Trump would have entered without a sales rep greeting him. My God, they have models on hand to model clothing at BD. So, her accusation seemed off to me. However, I feel all women must be heard regarding sexual abuse.

        I guess one could say I would not have been chosen for that jury, just recalling  Bergdorf Goodman store policies.

        1. abwilliams profile image68
          abwilliamsposted 4 months agoin reply to this

          Wow Sharlee, more Info. I had not heard... and yet the jury saw fit to make her a millionaire!?!

          1. Sharlee01 profile image87
            Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

            I have come to wonder if those facts were brought up in court. I would think Trump's defense should have made mention of the BG policies.

    7. IslandBites profile image90
      IslandBitesposted 4 months ago

      What was that about "painting each group with a broad brush"?

      SMH.

      1. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 4 months agoin reply to this

        I appreciate your close attention to my comment and my words. Nevertheless, it might be beneficial to revisit the concept of context. I suggest taking a moment to explore the definitions of "perceptive" and "view" for a more comprehensive understanding.

    8. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 4 months ago

      You know it's bad when Kayleigh McEnany is giving Kamala Harris praise for the messaging and how effective it's going to be for Democrats.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yvB6hxLCi0

      On top of that, the states where groups are trying to get abortion measures on the ballot in the 2024 election are:  Nebraska, Missouri, South Dakota, Iowa, Florida, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, New York, and Maryland. 

      FLORIDA
      In the Florida case, they just reached the signature threshold and county qualifications, now the measure goes to the state supreme court to determine the exact wording.  As of November 8, the group had just under 500,000 signatures and had 10 weeks to get the last 400,000.  They got that in around eight weeks.  Seems like women are very motivated on this issue and might turn out in Florida.  We've seen in other abortion ballot elections that 10-point swing in favor of Democrats - can anyone imagine what that might do to a national Florida election?

      1. Credence2 profile image77
        Credence2posted 4 months agoin reply to this

        Yes, Valeant, the issue is a hot potato here. DeSantis and the GOP are desperate to avoid a referendum on this where the odds are that they may lose. They have taken an extreme position on this matter and it will be challenged. I will do everything that I can to sabotage Republicans and their agenda here in Florida, promoting Democrats.

        1. Ken Burgess profile image76
          Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          So long as people can put issues like abortion and climate change at the top of their list of what they are voting on, we will continue to see the slide into self-destruction and deconstruction America has been on the last 30 years.

          So, in effect, I agree with your sentiments regarding the pushback we will likely see in Florida. 

          Things are going as well in Florida as anywhere in the country, due in large part to the Conservatives having control for so long here, but the very fact that our economy is doing good and our streets aren't overrun with homeless and migrants flowing in unchecked will allow many, especially women, to go vote on issues that have nothing to do with economic stability or State/National wellbeing.

          It will only be when the rug is pulled out from the economy completely, which they will do everything possible to postpone until after the 2024 elections, that the truth will come home to roost for many Americans... issues like when a pregnancy can be terminated and how many regulations are going to be forced on companies to combat 'climate change' won't matter when you can't pay for your next meal or next mortgage payment.

          1. Credence2 profile image77
            Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            I don't know so much about climate change, but abortion and reproductive rights will have top billing in more than a few red states. As Florida is not crimson red and has a growing and diverse population with large urban areas, this may well be the death knell for certain levels of conservatism in the state. Now, if we can just get rid of DeSantis.

            This issue will be an Achilles heel for the Republican Party and The Dems need to target properly. People are more concerned about their bodily integrity rights over the rising price of hamburger, I would think.

            The economy is doing just fine, it is only the rightwing "doom and gloom" merchants that are finding vulnerabilities in it for purely partisan reasons.

            1. Ken Burgess profile image76
              Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              That is not the reality, I wish it were.

              It will continue to appear as if it is fine, until it isn't.

              One thing that the last four years has shown me, or made me more aware of, is how much impact an Administration really can have on the economy.

              The war in Ukraine has had a major impact, not merely because we are funding the nation's budgetary needs, not just its war needs, but because of how world trade has been impacted.

              The same can be said for the escalating conflict in the Middle East, which will have a worsening impact on trade in the coming months.

              The experts are concerned, not afraid yet, but seriously concerned, enough that they are making the rounds on national news shows, not only expressing those concerns... but even making statements suggesting things were better under Trump, that not all that he did was so bad after all.

              When the people who control trillions of dollars in transactions daily are making public statements like that, then the people who have the pulse on the economy and where it is headed are most definitely concerned... and not all is well.

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                You are speaking from a speculation point of view, and as always for me, the proof has to be in the pudding.

                1. Ken Burgess profile image76
                  Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  When the proof is in the pudding, the goose will be cooked.

                  Then the only thing you can do is lament, the goose laying the golden eggs is no more.

          2. Sharlee01 profile image87
            Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            Ken,   
            What could be more effective than steering women voters' focus towards issues like abortion and climate change, placing them at the forefront of their concerns? It undoubtedly captures attention and elicits passionate responses, diverting minds from the multitude of challenges currently confronting America due to what is inadequate governance.

            The idea of instilling the belief that abortion holds greater importance than economic, educational, or safety concerns appears to be a strategic approach. The implication that women should prioritize abortion over these significant problems, in my view, is a deliberate attempt to influence their perspectives.  The abortion issue certainly hits a cord with women.  I mean we all can remember the coined words ---  barefoot and pregnant...  What better way to divert them looking over here, instead of there?  Turning away from all the big problems that certainly affect them more than an unwanted pregnancy. 

            I have developed a skepticism about the ability of some women to comprehend and engage with the broader challenges facing the nation. I certainly realize their concerns regarding abortion rights, but should this issue be at the top of a list when choosing a President to govern over the well-being of our Nation?  I mean we have some nasty problems, and more brewing...

            1. Ken Burgess profile image76
              Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              It is a tactic that proves over and over again to be successful.

              I am sure there are studies that show how certain topics and concerns impact women differently then men.

              58% of women voted for Biden only 44% of men did.

              If you want to focus on any demographic to shift an election one way or another, that is it.  Women, they make up 53% of the voters.

              1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                I agree, women do as a rule view things differently from men. But, times are changin'...  LOL

                edit -  call it mindset evolution

                1. Valeant profile image86
                  Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  Evolution isn't stripping them of body autonomy while allowing men and dead people to continue to have those rights.

                  1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                    Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    Just referring to mindset changes over many decades.  I will edit

      2. abwilliams profile image68
        abwilliamsposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        So sad that murder is what motivates Dems!

        1. Valeant profile image86
          Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          Murder is what the GOP is trying to do to mothers, like in Texas, where the life of the mother was at risk and the fetus was terminal, but they were still making her carry it to term as she had health complications.  Despicable.  Dead people have more rights to their bodies than that mother. 

          And still waiting for anyone in the GOP to tell us any other medical procedure that can kill you, that the government is allowed to force onto people.

        2. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

          I understand that opinions on abortion vary in todays society, and I respect your perspective. It seems to me that some individuals who support abortion may not perceive it as equivalent to murder, but rather as a permissible choice. It appears that certain segments of our society have come to accept the termination of a conceived human being as acceptable, viewing the rights of the unborn as only beginning at birth.

          There has been a shift in attitudes towards conception and the significance of childbirth, reflecting what I feel as a decline not only in moral values but also in human empathy. In my view, I see perceived a lack of responsibility in managing birth control measures, I am skeptibal about women's ability to effectively control pregnancies with common sense birth control.  While I acknowledge that some situations are beyond one's control, it appears that a majority of abortions are not attributed to cases of rape or incest.

          Approaching abortion from a scientific perspective, I  believe choosing to terminate a developing human being is equivalent to ending a human life, killing.

          Moreover,  I share your sentiment that human life is a gift from God. I realize my statement is straightforward. In my view, everyone has the right to share their views without the need to embellish those views.

          I also realize my thoughts will draw hyperbolic reactions. Proud to say, I can handle these reactions, without wavering or doubting my thoughts on the subject of abortion.

    9. abwilliams profile image68
      abwilliamsposted 3 months ago

      There is nothing which can be compared to what abortion is- what abortion does!

      1. Valeant profile image86
        Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        Laws that murder mothers sure can.  Laws that force them to carry a dead baby to term and go through labor just to birth something not alive is clearly worse, and barbaric.

    10. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      If we went back a few years in these forums, we'd be able to look at dozens of fearmongering posts along the lines that we just saw.  Apparently, the economy is supposed to crash as soon as any Democrat takes office, despite the historical trends that state just the opposite.  Living in such a state of fear must be taxing on the nerves.

    11. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      Trump's cognitive decline continues, says he offered Nikki Haley 10,000 troops on January 6 because Nikki Haley was in charge of Capitol security on that day.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_khnb6FLgUY

      1. IslandBites profile image90
        IslandBitesposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        “By the way, they never report the crowd on Jan. 6. You know Nikki Haley, Nikki Haley, Nikki Haley, you know, they — do you know they destroyed all of the information, all of the evidence, everything, deleted and destroyed all of it. All of it,” Trump claimed. “Because of lots of things … like Nikki Haley is in charge of security — we offered her 10,000 people, soldiers, National Guards, whatever they want. They turned it down. They don’t want to talk about that. These are very dishonest people.”

        Anyone can mix up names every once in a while. But the ramblings... they keep getting worse. Yikes! yikes

        1. Valeant profile image86
          Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          Yeah, that was really pretty bad.  First the lie about them deleting 'all of the evidence' when it's well known that the transcripts of the video depositions are the official record, not the videos themselves.  Then him repeatedly misusing Haley when he's trying to lie about Pelosi.  Not only deluded, but confused.  Ouch.

    12. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      'Screaming for impeachment even before he took office?'  Al Green was one of the earliest to talk about it, but that didn't happen until after Trump had fired Jim Comey (May 2017), something that Mueller stated was obstruction of justice in his report. 

      So, if holding someone accountable for obstructing an investigation into an attack on our elections by a hostile foreign government, or for blackmailing a foreign government to create the appearance of an investigation into a political rival, or for organizing and inciting an attack on Congress, are 'dirty tricks,' then I think your idea of dirty tricks is really warped.

      As to election fraud, 62 of 63 court cases, with many looking at the 'evidence' denied the claims.  There were audits run, even partisan ones by conservatives in Arizona that found Biden actually won by more.  Mike Lindell and Sydney Powell even hacked voting machines and got into the programming and could not find evidence of fraud.  The Department of Justice, Homeland Security, and even Trump's own Campaign hires all found Trump's claims of fraud to be lies.

      Ah, yes, changing the 'Trump Campaign' wording to Trump to try and deny the collusion that was clearly proven against Manafort with the many meetings being proven, as well as what Manafort was giving to the Russians.  Just the latest MAGA denial of facts.

      One of the two parties colluding with Russia, obstructing justice in the investigation in an effort to protect Russia, blackmailing a foreign government, organizing and inciting a domestic terror attack on Congress, obstructing justice to illegally retain the nation's top secrets - and yet you have the gall to say that 'the actions of the Democrats have crossed lines.'  Not sure the far-right in this country understands what a line is if they still back the person that did everything that I just listed.

    13. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 3 months ago

      On the Economic Front Lines

      "The House Ways and Means Committee voted overwhelmingly Friday to approve a $78 billion tax package that would revive a trio of business tax incentives and expand the child tax credit."

      Strong bipartisan showing in first test of tax deal’s support by Roll Call (Jan 19, 2023)
      https://rollcall.com/2024/01/19/strong- … 01/22/2024

      The vote was bipartisan, 40 to 3. The three dissenters were Democrats.

      "This bill contains important provisions that individually have bipartisan support,” said Ways and Means Chairman Jason Smith, R-Mo. “We can show our constituents, who are struggling with inflation and high interest rates, that when Congress works together, we can still achieve big things: bipartisan tax relief that grows wages, supports better jobs, gives families more breathing room and keeps America competitive on the world stage.”

    14. abwilliams profile image68
      abwilliamsposted 3 months ago

      Anyone here who "knows" me, knows that this is pretty much all that I write about and have written about, in my articles. I don't need to reiterate my thoughts, I just pray that eventually common sense will prevail or we are doomed!
      That doesn't mean, all hope is on the shoulders of Trump, it is much broader and deeper than that,  and you either get it or you don't.

    15. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
      Kathleen Cochranposted 3 months ago

      " I believe there is negative karma surrounding Biden, "

      And Trump creates what? Peace and love?

      Sheeze

      1. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

        I'm uncertain about Trump's impact, but it's evident that his rallies draw large crowds, and attendees appear to enjoy themselves. His statements often trigger strong reactions from the left-leaning media. Despite facing numerous court cases and managing a busy schedule, his demeanor in interviews is often pleasant. Overall, his karma seems positive, in my view.

        I mean who would have the guts with all that he has facing him choose to run for president? And it will appear he has tons of Americans feeling he is the guy they want back in the White House. Go Figure. So, I would say he has some form of karma on steroids.

    16. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      Got to love when a Trump voter claims that they don't vote for a racist person when that candidate continues to use the birtherism claim against minority candidates.  It's so clearly racism that it's comical that they cannot recognize it as such.

      1. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

        So, could you share why you found Trump's question about the legitimacy of Obama’s birth certificate an issue that should be labeled racist?   

        There is no doubt he did openly question Obama's birth, but were the statements racist?   I found a piece on CNN that did list his quotes. I did not find the quotes racist, I found them to be dog whistles, and uncalled for. But, I did not see racism jump out at me. He also seems to be very attuned to what will get people keeping him in the headlines. 
        (not baiting, looking to learn on this one)

        https://www.cnn.com/2016/09/09/politics … index.html

        1. Valeant profile image86
          Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          Do you really not understand why birtherism is racist?  That just because someone is black, or American Indian, that they must not be eligible based on false claims they weren't born in the United States.  First Obama, then Harris, now Haley - Trump has made the false claims with all three.  The assumption that a minority, and if you notice that Trump never spreads these lies about his white opposing candidates, should have their citizenship questioned is what makes the birtherism movement openly racist.

          1. Readmikenow profile image95
            Readmikenowposted 3 months agoin reply to this

            That is not necessarily true.

            You do realize members of Obama's immediate family were telling people he was born in Kenya?  His brother, aunt, etc.

            When John McCain ran for president, the democrats made quite an issue of him being born in the Arizona territory before it became a state.  Many legal scholars weighed in on it and some said McCain wasn't eligible.

            Is this an example of democrat racist birtherism?

            "McCain's citizenship called into question

            Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and his advisers are doing their best to brush aside questions — raised in the liberal blogosphere — about whether he is qualified under the Constitution to be president.  But many legal scholars and government lawyers say it's a serious question with no clear answer."

            https://www.nbcnews.com/id/wbna23415028

            1. Valeant profile image86
              Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              The difference being that Cruz had the same issue as McCain because it was public knowledge that both were born outside of the United States. 

              Trump literally invented that Harris and Haley were not born inside the United States.  The Obama claims started before Trump, but he used them early in his political career and they were proven false by multiple birth certificates.

              1. Readmikenow profile image95
                Readmikenowposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                Really?

                "Trump said, “I heard today that she doesn’t meet the requirements.” He referred to a lawyer who raised the issue in a Newsweek article, Chapman University professor John Eastman, as “very highly qualified.”

                Trump then said he has “no idea” whether it’s true Harris doesn’t meet the requirements. He then asked the reporter if she was saying Harris doesn’t qualify because Harris “wasn’t born in this country.”

                Hardly an invention by President Donald Trump. 

                Nikki Haley was an off the cuff remark where he said "Wherever she is from."

                Hardly saying she wasn't born in the United States.

                1. Valeant profile image86
                  Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  Yeah, really.  Eastman was working for the Trump Campaign.  So he heard something that his campaign was promoting - about someone born in Oakland.  Haley was just more of the same playbook - create a conspiracy not even remotely true about a minority candidate's citizenship.  Just pure racism as he only does it to the minority candidates, and not surprising to see his followers trying to justify it.  Actually, it's expected.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    "Just pure racism as he only does it to the minority candidates, and not surprising to see his followers trying to justify it.  Actually, it's expected."

                    With Trump, I would be surprised if he could or ever have done anything above board...

                  2. Readmikenow profile image95
                    Readmikenowposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    I like this second and third hand information.

                    No proof at all.

                    1. profile image0
                      savvydatingposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                      Exactly. Just more emotional outbursts from the Left, as usual. Zero proof. But, it is a good way to deflect from their own prejudice.

                2. Willowarbor profile image61
                  Willowarborposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  On his social media platform, Trump shared a post from the Gateway Pundit, a right-wing website that traffics in hoaxes and conspiracy theories, that falsely claimed she might not be legally eligible for the presidency because she’s somehow not a natural-born citizen.  Why share something like that? The man is lacking in any sort of judgment.

                  Whatever Haley’s parents’ citizenship status was, the fact that she was born in a US state means that she is, undeniably, a natural-born citizen. It is her birthright, as enshrined in the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. Unsurprisingly, that didn’t stop Trump from sharing the conspiracy theory about her citizenship.

                  The birtherism schtick is simply "otherism".   Just a little suggestion that the other is not really like us and probably isn't  a "real" American

                  1. Readmikenow profile image95
                    Readmikenowposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    Soooo, President Donald Trump simply shared a story.  He never gave an opinion on it one way or another.

                    Stuff like this makes the left seem sooo desperate.

              2. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                Thank you, Valeant.

            2. Credence2 profile image77
              Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

              So, the man who would be a candidate for President of the United States we would leave to Trump to determine whether or not Obama qualifies under the Constitution? As if that man who has never bothered to open a book always know more than the experts, or so he says.....

          2. Sharlee01 profile image87
            Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            "Do you really not understand why birtherism is racist?  That just because someone is black, or American Indian, that they must not be eligible based on false claims they weren't born in the United States."

            Trump stirred controversy by questioning Obama's birth certificate, but it seemed like he was attempting to connect it to presidential eligibility laws. I doubt he could have used the same approach with any other opposing candidate. However, you never know; he might have exploited an opportunity if he saw one. During the birther issue, I didn't perceive it as racist, but rather as a cheap political ploy that went below the belt.

            1. Kathleen Cochran profile image77
              Kathleen Cochranposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              Amen.

        2. Credence2 profile image77
          Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

          Yes, he and it racist, who is so arrogant to assume that Mr. Obama would have not been vetted by the experts over this issue long before he even could be considered as a candidate. What gives the right to pull all this false assertion out of the air? Is it not a coincidence that he used the same tactics on Kamela Harris and Nikki Haley?

          The dog whistles were racist ones, for which he no business being involved. "Uncalled for" merely is attempt to ameliorate what it is in actuality.

          1. Sharlee01 profile image87
            Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            Is there no possibility that Trump was engaging in highly exaggerated speech? Trump's use of over-the-top language has been a consistent trait for decades. While he did stir controversy by questioning Obama's birth certificate, what stood out to me was his ability to link these attempts to his rhetoric and connect them to presidential eligibility laws. Throughout the birther issue, I didn't interpret it as racist; instead, I saw it as a cheap political tactic that was in bad taste. I certainly can understand how so many did, and do feel his pushing such a thought as possibly being race-motivated.

            Just my view.

            1. Credence2 profile image77
              Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

              Fair enough, Sharlee..

      2. Credence2 profile image77
        Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

        Trump uses tools in his tool box that any candidate that wants my vote certainly is not going to have.

        Birtherism is racism right in your face.

    17. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 3 months ago

      Analogously, racism, today, is like porn. You know it when you see it.

    18. IslandBites profile image90
      IslandBitesposted 3 months ago

      Biden opens up lead on Trump amid growing gender gap: Quinnipiac poll

      President Biden has opened up a 6 point lead in a hypothetical head-to-head match-up with former President Trump, new polling shows, amid signs of a growing gender gap in support for the two party front-runners.

      A new Quinnipiac University national poll found Biden with 50 percent support among registered voters, ahead of Trump’s 44 percent.

      That’s a shift in the incumbent’s favor from December, when Quinnipiac found the same Biden-Trump hypothetical “too close to call,” with Biden at 47 percent support and Trump at 46 percent.

      Biden also scored majority support among independents in the latest findings, with 52 percent support to Trump’s 40 percent.

      The poll additionally found a growing gender gap when it comes to support for the current and former presidents as they each run for a second White House term.

      Fifty-eight percent of women say they support Biden, up from 53 percent in December.

      At the same time, 53 percent of men say they support Trump, “largely unchanged” from 51 percent in December.

      “The gender demographic tells a story to keep an eye on. Propelled by female voters in just the past few weeks, the head-to-head tie with Trump morphs into a modest lead for Biden,” Quinnipiac University polling analyst Tim Malloy said in the report.

      https://poll.qu.edu/poll-release?releaseid=3889

      1. Ken Burgess profile image76
        Ken Burgessposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        No less should be expected.

        The least popular president in American history will win re-election in 2024.

        Also, the gap for women that they noted, is the same as it was for 2020.  Women put Biden in office in 2020, they are 53% of the total vote, and 58% of them voted for Biden last time as well.

        According to their statistics anyways, if you put stock in those things.

        Joe Biden is winning female voters by a historic margin
        https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/13/politics … index.html

        Early exit polls show President-elect Biden winning the votes of 57 percent of women, compared to 45 percent of men.
        https://www.msnbc.com/know-your-value/h … n-n1247746

      2. Credence2 profile image77
        Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

        Good news,
        I knew that it was a matter of time before moderates and independents came to their senses. As Republicans and the Right reap what they had sown in regards to the abortion rights issues.

        1. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

          CNN ---

          "Former President Trump is holding a narrow 4-point lead over President Biden in a new poll.

          Forty-nine percent of registered voters in the CNN poll, conducted by SSRS, said they would be “more likely to vote” for Trump, while 45 percent said they would be “more likely to vote” for Biden."

          "Fox News Poll: Trump leads Biden in Georgia, receiving just over 50% support
          Trump is ahead of Biden in Georgia among independents and voters under age 35, according to the Fox News poll"

          Feb 1 2024  As the election year ramps up, former President Donald Trump leads fellow Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley in her home state of South Carolina and President Joe Biden in key swing states. Kristen Welker shares the latest on Meet the Press NOW.
          https://www.nbcnews.com/meet-the-press/ … 3434053730
          https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/po … joe-biden/

          Just a look at the wider picture.

          1. Credence2 profile image77
            Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            We will see, evidence points to problems Trump will have with independent and moderate voters.

            The goal is to isolate MAGA as a cult among itself.

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

              Hey, I was pleased to see IB post something that I find important. I mean this is a political chat.  I applaud her for taking the time. Not many posts here anymore, and some that do are more about tossing around derogatory labels.

              My true view of polls --- They are all we have to give us some form of the idea of what Americans are thinking, they fluctuate almost daily, and in the end, much of the time come out to mean little in the very end.

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                Yes, nice to have her drop by.

                I believe that it may well be true that the only accurate polls with be the one taken on Election Day.

                1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                  Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  Yes, the last polls will be a better meter...   Very fatigued at the high bar one needs to jump to communicate one's point. here. It's either right or left ---  Where did all the free-thinking individuals go?  Ya know 50 years ago that was the liberal. free-minded, common sense, and in my view so much more likely to question something that might be odd. 

                  I still have hopes to see some true awakening.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    I will say that 50 years ago, Nixon was forced to resign, because partisan considerations were subordinated to Nixon's abuse of discretion while President. Both sides realized that the line had been crossed, a line that Republicans and Democrats both respected. Barry Goldwater told Nixon it was time to go.

                    What happened to that sort of integrity in the last 50 years?

                    1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                      Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                      I was talking about liberal ideology. --    It's either right or left ---  Where did all the free-thinking individuals go?  Ya know 50 years ago that was the liberal. free-minded, common sense, and in my view so much more likely to question something that might be odd.

                      Not sure how you came up with your reply.  Simply pointing out I see a true change in the mindset of liberals in general.

            2. abwilliams profile image68
              abwilliamsposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              I have been following along and not contributing to the conversation, but I must respond to:
              "the goal is to isolate MAGA as a cult among itself".

              A cult?

              Wanting the best for your Country and her citizens is now considered cultist? Oh wait, permission to say "her"? I know the left is so easily offended. Is it wrong, cultist of me, to say "the best", is that too, insensitive?
              Who do we (well some of us) Americans think we are? Wanting to compete, be the best, be proud, achieve, win? That's only allowed in other countries, not this one. This one we are supposed to hate, work to dissolve, tear down, break apart, dis-unite.....and why?
              Do you know Cred?
              What is the real goal with fundamental transformation?
              What does it look like without form, shape, color....borders or laws?
              Is this Utopia a place that any one of us will wish to be a part of?
              Sell it, I am not sold.

              1. Credence2 profile image77
                Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                So, let's hear your take, AB

                I want the best for my country as well, but it comes through following the rules prescribed within our Constitution and not giving in to desires of any one man to disrupt that.

                I am all for a united citizenry, but that is not accomplished through treason and Trump and MAGA support for the criminal activities of January 6th. I did not give Trump nor MAGA the authority to replace legitimate electors with fake ones when the votes were tallied. He was clearly behind that and he confirms it with his desire to obtain some sort of immunity for criminal behavior because he was president?

                We all know that a utopia is always unattainable, but a objective of making the best for the greatest number is not unreasonable.

                1. abwilliams profile image68
                  abwilliamsposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                  Nothing is "clear" about J6 and you are failing miserably in making a case for Biden’s America.

                  1. Credence2 profile image77
                    Credence2posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    It is clear, AB, if you want to take a serious look.

                    I will take Biden or anyone else in preference over someone trying to steal my government from me.

                  2. Sharlee01 profile image87
                    Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                    Hi AB.  ---    When I reflect on the events of the day, I gain a clear perspective. I observed thousands attending the President's speech, where he urged a peaceful march to the Capitol. Despite reports indicating his intention to join, Secret Service advice prevented him. Upon reaching the Capitol, I witnessed a group of protesters turning combative, entering the building. I also witnessed some officers guiding some around and amidst the chaos.  I heard one gunshot and saw a young protester shot. While aware some protesters carried guns, they refrained from using them. Thousands were arrested and faced trial, but none were charged with treason or insurrection. Minimal damage occurred, and sadly, one protester lost their life, and several officers were injured.

                    However, it is apparent that many interpreted the events differently then I did.

                    I then personally witnessed the impeachment of President Trump based on unfolding statements, that reled on second and third-hand accounts. When I reflect on the events of the day, I gain a clear perspective. I observed thousands attending the President's speech, where he urged a peaceful march to the Capitol. Despite reports indicating his intention to join, Secret Service advice prevented him. Upon reaching the Capitol, I witnessed a group of protesters turning combative, entering the building. Officers guided some around, and amidst the chaos, I heard a gunshot and saw a young protester shot. While aware some protesters carried guns, they refrained from using them. Thousands were arrested and faced trial, but none were charged with treason or insurrection. Minimal damage occurred, and sadly, one protester lost their life.

                    However, many interpreted the events differently. I personally witnessed the impeachment of President Trump based on unfolding statements, relying on second and third-hand accounts.  In the end, former President Donald Trump's second impeachment trial came to a climactic end, with Trump being acquitted for his alleged role in inciting the deadly event. A majority of senators voted to convict the former president but failed to reach the super majority threshold needed for a conviction.  So, once again I looked at a fact --- he was acquitted. Yet to follow, and question the Congress's decision I witnessed what was called the Jan 6th hearings... Which once again lacked any evidence of a crime, just more second, and tried hand testimony which was often opinion orrinted. Yet, many once again seem to look beyond a lack of evidence of a crime.

                    So, what did I overlook? It appears that amidst the blurred lines, I maintained a commitment to fairness, making judgments based on what I directly observed rather than succumbing to external narratives attempting to shape my perception.

                    1. Willowarbor profile image61
                      Willowarborposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                      I witnessed what was called the Jan 6th hearings... Which once again lacked any evidence of a crime,

                      Yet a grand jury ( not Biden, not the DOJ) indicted him on 4 counts for his role in attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 election.   The speech he made that day is irrelevant at this point.
                      The indictments vindicate the work that the committees did to lay the ground for the special prosecutor.

                    2. abwilliams profile image68
                      abwilliamsposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                      Shar, your observations are comparable to my observations.
                      Guess that makes us "cultists"?!

    19. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      Not sure election deniers should be posting about understanding what proof is.  Pretty sure they showed a disconnect with that term back in 2020 and 2021.

    20. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      Comical that the people backing the guy quoting Adolph Hitler claim the other side is more comparable to the Germans of the 1940's.  It's apparent who the Nazi-wannabe's truly are in this country - where one party is openly courting neo-nazi's with their speech.  The amount of projection in that post was what we typical see from the in-denial MAGA followers.

      And those lacking the actual intelligence cannot see through the obvious lies of a malignant narcissist inventing election fraud to shield his brittle ego from a loss everyone could see coming.

      Even in the descriptors, you see the projection.  It's not the Democrats, it's the radical democrats, because those who use those descriptors have moved so far to the right, that everyone not with them appear to be radicals.  GOP members not buying the MAGA message, independents, and all Democrats will seem like radicals when you've gone that far to the fringe and think everyone else but the guy who is a business fraud, confirmed rapist, and indicted on 91 felony counts, are liars.  Never has a case of Dunning-Kruger existed more than in recent posts in this thread.

      1. Sharlee01 profile image87
        Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

        What's with the excessive use of bitter labels? This distinguishes you from other contributors here. It's worth noting that others refrain from employing derogatory terms. Does such rhetoric contribute to a meaningful conversation, or does it simply reflect on the person using it?

        1. Valeant profile image86
          Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          'What's with the excessive use of bitter labels? This distinguishes you from other contributors here.'

          Only if you fail to read the post I responded to, the one you seem to agree wholeheartedly with, that lobbed many of those same labels towards the liberals in these forums.  If someone is going to generally attack the left, calling them radicals and comparing them to Nazis, do not be so shocked and pearl-clutching when the left pushes back.

          1. Sharlee01 profile image87
            Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

            Rest assured, I was fully aware that your response was directed towards my comment intended for Savvy. I hope it was apparent that I was expressing a personal perspective to Savvy. I took care in crafting my viewpoint and presenting it as such. It's important to note that I hold no accountability for the contributions of others here on HPs. I reserve the right to express agreement, disagreement, or any stance in between.

            My comment shows the clarity of my view -- It may not match your thoughts, but I have the right to share my thoughts in a personal note to Savvy. I also realize this is an open chat, and you have the right to post freely.

            "Savvy -  As always I enjoy your strong perspective on the ideological divide between the Left and the Right.   I also share that your comparison to historical events, such as the Nazis in the 1940s, adds a layer of gravity, and rings true.

            I appreciate your continuing to see freedom-loving Americans, as defenders of truth and advocates for progress.   I feel much the same, I trust America in the end to use good common sense.  I underscore your belief in the importance of preserving the values that you associate with the creation of the nation.

            I never anticipated seeing such a profound divide, and it's increasingly evident that the issue is escalating. My only wish is for common sense to prevail. I will cling to hope and strive to contribute to bringing some semblance of clarity to the situation."

            1. Valeant profile image86
              Valeantposted 3 months agoin reply to this

              'Rest assured, I was fully aware that your response was directed towards my comment intended for Savvy.'

              Actually, it wasn't intended as a response to you at all, although it was noted that you agreed with the post I was addressing.  I believe a few of us understand how vast our differences are and that when we directly address each other, one, or both of us tend to get banned.  So we now talk in generalities about each other's parties as a means to still opine while avoiding the touchy Hubpages Police force.

              1. Sharlee01 profile image87
                Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

                I too believe most of the posts here are very acquainted with each other's ideologies, no argument there.  As with my post to Savvy, I made it clear that I aligned with her view.   I have found it much easier to go by the Rules here... I am a guest on HPS.

    21. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 3 months ago

      To be fair, I posted a reply to Wilderness about the Congress direction with conservative and liberal. That  may reflect the voting populous, yet may be arguable. The next YouGov poll shares "Americans agree that the country's politics have moved in a single consistent direction over the past decade: away from their own politics." For all adults 30% say it has moved further left and 26% say further right.

      For a deep dive at the graphic and others see; Liberals say the country has moved to the right; conservatives say it's moved to the left by YouGov (Dec 15, 2023)
      https://today.yougov.com/politics/artic … moved-left

    22. Valeant profile image86
      Valeantposted 3 months ago

      I'd like to say I'm surprised to see the MAGA forum posters trying to defend Trump's Hitler quotes, but it's pretty much par for the course.  His followers will defend the most vile statements he makes.

    23. tsmog profile image84
      tsmogposted 3 months ago

      For courtesy with the ongoing debate about the recent Senate immigration bill debate the text has been released. Next, is a link to that text for those interested.

      https://www.appropriations.senate.gov/i … l_text.pdf

      Subtitle B—Asylum Processing at the Border is at page 115.

      TITLE III—SECURING AMERICA Subtitle A—Border Emergency Authority is at page 205.

      1. abwilliams profile image68
        abwilliamsposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        The wording of this Senate border bill, is alarming; not just seeing the astronomical numbers of those crossing...illegally...but the fact that there's no mention of stopping it!?!?!?
        What am I missing?

        1. tsmog profile image84
          tsmogposted 3 months agoin reply to this

          Ask others AB. I only as a courtesy posted a link to the text of the bill. All 370 pages of it. I also gave hints to where to look for the text to the immigration and border areas of the bill. I will be reading the text later in the day after lunch and my nap.

    24. Sharlee01 profile image87
      Sharlee01posted 3 months ago

      "Former President Trump reacted to the newly released Senate immigration bill by calling it "horrendous" and a "gift to Democrats" while calling for immigration and foreign aid to be dealt with in separate bills.

      "Only a fool, or a Radical Left Democrat, would vote for this horrendous Border Bill, which only gives Shutdown Authority after 5000 Encounters a day, when we already have the right to CLOSE THE BORDER NOW, which must be done," Trump wrote on Truth Social on Monday morning.. "This Bill is a great gift to the Democrats, and a Death Wish for The Republican Party. It takes the HORRIBLE JOB the Democrats have done on Immigration and the Border, absolves them, and puts it all squarely on the shoulders of Republicans. Don’t be STUPID!!!"

      Trump continued, "We need a separate Border and Immigration Bill. It should not be tied to foreign aid in any way, shape, or form! The Democrats broke Immigration and the Border. They should fix it. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!!"

      "The ridiculous ‘Border’ Bill is nothing more than a highly sophisticated trap for Republicans to assume the blame on what the Radical Left Democrats have done to our Border, just in time for our most important EVER Election," Trump wrote. "Don’t fall for it!!!"

      The long awaited release of the Senate immigration bill on Sunday night sparked backlash from conservatives including House Speaker Mike Johnson who called the bipartisan  $118 billion border security and foreign aid package is "even worse than we expected" and would be "dead on arrival" in the lower chamber.

      Republicans have taken issue with a provision of the bill that states the border will be shutdown only when 5,000 illegal immigrants a day cross the border as well as the billions of dollars of spending attached that goes to Ukraine and Israel.

      What the bill text does is create a new "border emergency authority" to turn people away, which may be used if the average number of migrants encountered reaches an average 4,000 per day across a seven-day period. The authority would be mandatory if that number hits 5,000. "   https://www.foxnews.com/politics/trump- … -democrats

      1. Willowarbor profile image61
        Willowarborposted 3 months agoin reply to this

        "Republicans have taken issue with a provision of the bill that states the border will be shutdown only when 5,000 illegal immigrants a day cross the border as well as the billions of dollars of spending attached that goes to Ukraine and Israel.

        Billions to Israel and Ukraine??Republicans ASKED for immigration to be linked to aid to Israel and Ukraine.
        "Senate Republicans initially INSISTED that border policy changes be included in Biden’s $110 billion emergency request for funding for Ukraine, Israel, immigration enforcement and other national security needs."

        https://apnews.com/article/congress-bor … b067d8dd9a

        Trump made a statement  "That’s a terrible bill. Five thousand a day? That’s a lot. That’s, like, record-setting stuff."

        But that's NOT actually what the bill proposes.  Let's try and cut thru the fox fog..


        Migrants would not be able to cross the border illegally under the new bill. It would end the practice of "catch and release," in which Border Patrol agents release migrants into the U.S. while they await immigration hearings.

        Instead, migrants who tried to cross the border illegally would be detained immediately, with their asylum claims decided while they were in detention. People would be removed immediately within 15 days if they failed their asylum claim interviews.

        Good or bad so far?

        If the bill  were to become law, migrants who come to the border at official ports of entry would be diverted to a new "removal authority program" in which they would have 90 days to make their initial asylum interviews. Those migrants would NOT be released into the interior of the U.S., either; they would either be detained or kept under government supervision.

        If they failed their initial asylum interviews, they would be removed immediately.

        But migrants who passed the asylum interview would get to stay in the country for an additional 90 days until their asylum cases were decided. In the meantime, they would receive work authorizations. Once their cases were adjudicated, they would qualify for a path to citizenship.

        Makes sense so far?

        So where did this 5,000-a-day figure come from?

        The bill does include provisions that would shut down the border entirely if a certain threshold is hit, but those are border encounters, NOT crossings. As noted above, no migrants trying to enter the U.S. illegally would be allowed into the country unless they passed asylum interviews or were being held under government supervision.

        In addition to those provisions, the Department of Homeland Security could close the border if too many migrants were showing up with asylum claims

        DHS would have the  authority to close the border if they reached a seven-day average of 4,000 or more border ENCOUNTERS. A seven-day average of 5,000 or more would mandate a border closure. If the number exceeded 8,500 in a single day, there would also be a mandatory border closure.

        The bill would also raise the standard to seek asylum. And it would provide other resources for the border, including increasing detention capacity for migrants who were held pending asylum claims.

        Those attempting entry  between ports would be immediately turned away. If the same person tried to cross twice when the border was shut down between ports of entry, the person would be barred from entering the U.S. for one year.

        sounds like a significant piece of legislation. But we have folks saying that doing nothing is preferable?

        Or what, very specifically, is preferable?

        1. Sharlee01 profile image87
          Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

          I'm currently crunching the numbers on the additional aid funds included in the bill. The math is staggering...  And very little will end up in fixing the border.   It seems like the media coverage might have overlooked this. They have come out and corraled down one path. I will light step around the horse sh--  on this bill.

          Considering the past 3.5 years, I'm inclined to wait a few months and observe what unfolds. This appears to be a transparent late "please save me" political ploy, and it's a bit laughable. The damage has already been done.  Hey, we have all watched it.  Sorry, Joe  a little late to position yourself as the savior.    Quite dramatic, isn't it? But no cigar

          1. Willowarbor profile image61
            Willowarborposted 3 months agoin reply to this

            "Sorry, Joe  a little late to position yourself as the savior.    Quite dramatic, isn't it? But no cigar"

            How is this about Biden? He didn't negotiate the bill, it was a bipartisan group of senators led by Republican Lankford... Literally one of the most conservative.  Why did they begin to negotiate this bill? Because Republicans insisted they do so.  They insisted it be tied to funds for Israel and Ukraine.
            What's the alternative? Even if Trump somehow ended up back in office, what do you really think he could do that is any better? He didn't do it when he was in office and Republicans held both the house in the Senate. His attempt at reform failed. Title 42 is no longer a possibility, nor is MPP or his fantasy that a president can waive a wand and shut the border completely.  What is the MAGA stance on this issue?  Again, it's obstruct and tear down but never a solution.
            It's a solid bill that adds real solutions to things that people have been complaining about for years.

            1. Sharlee01 profile image87
              Sharlee01posted 3 months agoin reply to this

              Uncertain about the upcoming occupant of the White House in 2025; hopefully, they can address the significant challenges arising from Biden's handling of a broken border. It seems Biden did a pretty good job tearing down America.  Biden has rapidly deteriorated the country, and I strongly disagree with your perspective on this matter.  Hopefully, the House will work on a stand-alone immigration bill without all of Joe's spending attached.   Apologies, but I cannot share the same viewpoint.

              1. Willowarbor profile image61
                Willowarborposted 3 months agoin reply to this

                'Hopefully, the House will work on a stand-alone immigration bill without all of Joe's spending attached. "

                Joe's spending?  Because the Senate Republicans wanted to link Ukraine and Israel to immigration reform, it is all of a sudden Joe's spending? 
                I do believe a majority of Republicans want aid to Israel and Ukraine also. It's MAGA that only wants aid to Israel...aid for Neytanyahu to continue genocide on Gaza. I'd pass on that one. 

                Trump's plan if God forbid he lands in the white house again...

                Trump has said he would restore his 2019 "remain in Mexico" program,.  Too bad Mexico has said no thanks.

                Trump has said he will seek to detain all migrants caught crossing the border illegally or violating other immigration laws, ending what he calls "catch and release."

                that's in the current bill he is railing against lol.

                Trump said in June he would also seek to block communists, Marxists and socialists from entering the United States. How does this even work?

                Trump has said he would implement travel bans on people from certain countries or with certain ideologies,
                How do we root out their ideology??
                Ideology screenings?



                And because cruelty is always the point...In a town hall with CNN in May, Trump declined to rule out resuming his contentious "zero tolerance" policy that led thousands of migrant children and parents to be separated at the U.S.-Mexico border in 2018. He defended the separations again in November, telling Spanish-language news outlet Univision that "it stopped people from coming by the hundreds of thousands."

                And maybe the crowning jewel...
                Trump has promised to carry out the "largest deportation operation" in U.S. history, modeled after the Eisenhower administration's infamous "Operation Wetback" in 1954, when hundreds of thousands of Mexican immigrants and American citizens were deported. Cool stuff?

                To facilitate the mass deportations, Trump has said he will give the National Guard and state officials the authority to arrest and deport immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, a move that would challenge long-standing legal limits on the military engaging in domestic law enforcement.  A little bending of the law is okay right?

                Trump has also said he would revive the Title 42 pandemic-era policy. How is this one even possible? 

                He's offering a lot of legally questionable promises. Nothing in the way of actual reform. None of this address the issues at border.  It's just red meat for the base.

                Please, someone, anyone make a case that Trump's plans are preferable to what is being offered in the bipartisan bill.