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roy moore Trump

Trump Doubles Down On Roy Moore, Castigates Ivanka For Supporting Victims

Meanwhile, another deeply disturbing anecdote has emerged from the West Wing.

On Sunday morning, Donald Trump doubled down (or is this quadrupled down by now?) on his support for Alabama Senate hopeful Roy Moore, tweeting the following:

Apparently realizing that someone would likely point out that he did not in fact back Roy Moore, but rather Moore’s opponent Luther Strange in the September party primary, Trump made sure to remind you that Strange got a boost from the batshit crazy rally the President held in Huntsville (that would be the same rally that started the whole NFL feud).

Make no mistake, this is a bad idea. There is no question that the allegations against Moore have at least some merit and even if they didn’t, Roy is a guy who has no business holding public office for a laundry list of reasons, some of which are outlined in detail here.

The problem for Trump is that his endorsement of “Big Luther” ran counter to Steve Bannon’s endorsement of Moore. When Moore won, it was widely seen as a testament to the idea that voters are still sympathetic to the populist message that got Trump elected – that would be the same message Steve Bannon is still pushing. So to Trump, there’s a sense in which Moore’s victory was “proof” that abandoning Bannon’s populism for mainstream Republican politics is not a good idea.

Of course once the allegations against Moore starting piling up, it became clear that Bannon had made an egregious miscalculation. The Washington Post story about Moore came just a day after Bannon called for Mitch McConnell to step aside, and as the furor grew over Moore’s alleged misdeeds, so did the backlash against the Führer’s “war” to replace GOP incumbents with “outsiders.” Bannon stood by Moore, but people close to the Breitbart boss would later reveal that he has his misgivings.

For Trump, this is and has always been a lose-lose proposition. Backing Strange was a way to curry favor with the mainstream Republicans Trump needs to push his agenda forward, but not backing Moore was seen as a move away from the populism that helped win Trump the election.

You’d think, given the allegations against Moore, that this would be an easy call for the President. But it’s not. Because Trump has already thrown Roy under the bus once by endorsing Strange. To throw him under the bus again would be to effectively double down on the same kind of mainstream Republican politics that his base despises and that Bannon spends every waking hour railing against. So what does Trump do? Well, he decides to roll the dice with Moore.

Here’s the New York Times:

Mr. Trump’s decision to reject every long-shot plan to save the Senate seat reflects the imperative that an unpopular president faces to retain his political base, a determination that he should follow his own instincts after having felt steered into a disastrous earlier endorsement in the Alabama race, and even his insistence that he himself has been the victim of false accusations of sexual misconduct.

But in tying himself to Mr. Moore even as congressional leaders have abandoned the candidate en masse, the president has reignited hostilities with his own party just as Senate Republicans are rushing to pass a politically crucial tax overhaul. Mr. McConnell and his allies have been particularly infuriated as Mr. Trump has reacted with indifference to a series of ideas they have floated to try to block Mr. Moore.

For his part, Lindsey Graham is cautious. “I was surprised, and I think it’s a high-risk move,” he said this week.

Apparently, Trump went so far as to defend Moore during a meeting with Senators on tax reform last week. According to multiple people in attendance, Trump told lawmakers that the allegations were based on things that happened “40 years ago” and Bannon is said to have “aggressively” lobbied Trump on behalf of Moore.

Meanwhile, another deeply disturbing anecdote has emerged from the West Wing. Earlier this month, Ivanka gave an interview to the Associate Press and weighed in on Moore as follows:

There’s a special place in hell for people who prey on children. I’ve yet to see a valid explanation and I have no reason to doubt the victims’ accounts.

According to three staffers, Trump was “annoyed” by his daughter’s condemnation of Moore. Referring to the AP interview, the President reportedly looked to several aides in the Oval Office, and asked: “Do you believe this?”

Nothing further.

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2 comments on “Trump Doubles Down On Roy Moore, Castigates Ivanka For Supporting Victims

  1. Our Commander in Chief (OMG!) is not only rowing against the tides of history but also social norms and decency. What a piece of…, be nice Dan, tool.

  2. All unsolved cases of girls between the ages of 12-28 who went missing in Alabama for the last 40 years should be thoroughly reconsidered and reinvestigated. Some of Moore’s pedophile encounters probably ended very badly and the girls’ bodies are buried in Alabama.

    Almost as harmful as the rare false accusers (Duke Lacrosse etc.) are the idiots who equate poor or bad taste attempts at humor with unforgivable sexual predation.

    The punishment should not be the same for an entertainer/comedian who thought it was funny to take a photo of him pretending to fondle the breasts of a sleeping Playboy model and misjudged the way that the Playboy model might react during a rehearsal for a sexy comedy skit while entertaining troops at a USO show as true predators like Moore and Trump.

    Playboy models deserve respect as much as anyone, and boorish offensive behavior requires exposure and a sincere apology. However, the best friends sexual predators have are those who would punish boorish behavior the same as predation.

    The people of Alabama will not make the final call. When Moore is elected, the Senate Ethics Committee will convene and Democratic Senators Chris Coons and Brian Schatz will inform Moore that he is under oath and that when he lies to the committee, not only will he be expelled but will be prosecuted for perjury and his case will be tried in Washington D.C. where the most likely jurors will be black women.

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