Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Hillary Up By 10% as Trump's Mental State Dominates Campaign Chatter

The last two days have been a self-inflicted cluster fuck for Donald Trump as his erratic behavior has some Republicans talking about replacing him as the nominee after he drops out of the race.  Simultaneously, some reports have senior GOP officials purportedly taking Trump to the woodshed for a thorough thrashing.   While all of this is going on, a new Fox News - that's right, right wing Fox News - poll has Hillary Clinton up by 10 points over Trump.  If we (actually, the nation) are lucky, Trump is entering the beginning of his long overdue implosion.  First, these highlights from Fox News:
Sixty-one percent of voters think Hillary Clinton is dishonest, yet she’s opened up a big lead over Donald Trump in the latest Fox News Poll.
Here’s why: majorities think Clinton is nevertheless qualified to be president, and has the temperament and knowledge to serve effectively. It’s the opposite for Trump: over half feel he is not qualified, and lacks the temperament or knowledge to lead the country. And his 62 percent dishonesty rating tops hers.
After the conventions, the Clinton-Kaine ticket leads the Trump-Pence ticket by 10 points (49-39 percent) in the race for the White House. Clinton’s advantage is outside the poll’s margin of error. A month ago, Clinton was up by six points (44-38 percent, June 26-28).
Since last month, Clinton’s position is improved with most groups, as she gained ground among men, women, whites, Democrats, young voters, and seniors.
The Democrat is winning among the so-called “Obama coalition,” the key voting blocs that secured his re-election. Clinton is favored among women by 23 points (57-34 percent), blacks by 83 (87-4 percent), Hispanics by 48 (68-20 percent), and voters under 30 by 18 (49-31 percent).
As if this latest polling isn't enough to terrify Republicans, now one of the prevailing memes across the main stream media is that Trump is mentally unstable and that and intervention is needed to save the GOP from disaster in November.  NBC News looks at this aspect of the GOP's self-inflicted conundrum.  Here are excerpts:
As Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's verbal gaffes have mounted and his penchant for lashing out at his political opponents has continued to escalate, it's become in vogue for critics to earnestly raise questions about Trump's temperament and his mental stability.
Terms like "narcissist" and "sociopath" have been attached to his name as routinely as Trump attaches that name to his buildings. Many of Trump's GOP allies have been publicly apoplectic about his unorthodox (some have argued virtually non-existent) campaign, his contradictory statements regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin and his critical remarks about the Muslim-American parents of a slain Iraq War hero.
The Washington Post's Eugene Robinson even wrote a column this week asking:"Is Donald Trump just plain crazy?"
On MSNBC Tuesday, Joe Scarborough said he's heard similar questions from party insiders. "I fielded calls all day yesterday, from conservatives, from Republicans, from officials, people that the media would call right-wing bloggers ... and everybody was asking about his mental health," the "Morning Joe" host said. "It was all everybody was talking about yesterday ... everybody was calling me saying, 'What's happening to him?', 'What is wrong with him?'"
Dr. Justin A. Frank, a Harvard-educated psychiatrist and author, knows a little something about the mental states of presidents. . . . Frank sees Trump as a "brilliant" salesman and showman who has more in common with theatrical performers like Judy Garland or the fictional lead character in "All That Jazz" than anyone with a pathological disorder. So far it seems Trump's unpredictable instincts have served him well in business and in the 2016 campaign, and although Frank compares the GOP candidate's behavior "to somebody who is under 10 years old," it's actually Trump's followers who have Frank more unnerved.
According to Frank, Trump's repetition of phrases ("believe me") and pledges to single-handedly absolve the fears of the electorate have struck a chord, and have appealed to voters who crave reassurance regardless of the facts. Frank says this dissonance has inspired a "hot" internal debate within the psychiatric community about whether its appropriate to be more outspoken regarding troubling aspects of Trump's public persona.
[Trump] has already started to float a conspiracy theory that the general election will be"rigged" against him, which some have interpreted as a way to cast doubt on a potential defeat. Others have speculated that Trump's entire campaign may simply be an elaborate launch for a new media empire. Scarborough suggested Tuesday that Trump doesn't actually want to govern, he simply wants to emerge victorious, a theory Frank finds plausible.

Some of us who said Trump was crazy and dangerous months ago now seem to have had foresight on the issue.  As for Trump's base of support, it consists of hate and fear driven Christofascists, white supremacists and those who would rather embrace ignorance rather than face having to think and/or deal wit a changing world and society,  If there has been any positive aspect to Trump's campaign, it has been to expose the moral and mental rot of evangelical Christians who have been only too happy to rally to his hate and lied filled campaign. ,

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