A Historic Number of Electors Defected, and Most Were Supposed to Vote for Clinton

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The Electoral College on Monday voted for Donald J. Trump to win the presidency. Seven electors, the most ever, voted for someone other than their party’s nominee.

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In Washington, a state where Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont had strong support in the Democratic primary against Hillary Clinton, three of the state’s 12 electoral votes went to Colin L. Powell, the Republican former secretary of state. One more elector voted for Faith Spotted Eagle, a Native American leader. Another Democratic elector in Hawaii voted for Mr. Sanders.

Two Texas electors voted for different Republican politicians: Gov. John Kasich of Ohio and former Texas congressman Ron Paul.

In addition, three Democratic electors, in Colorado, Maine and Minnesota, initially declined to vote for Mrs. Clinton. Two were replaced by an alternate, and one ended up changing his vote.

Protest Votes in the Electoral College

Electors are not required by the Constitution to vote for a particular candidate. Some states and parties require their electors to pledge to vote for a candidate and may fine or replace electors who break their pledge.

It is rare for more than one elector to vote against the party’s pledged candidate, but it has happened on a few occasions.

In 1808, six New York electors from the Democratic-Republican Party refused to vote for James Madison and instead voted for the party’s vice-presidential candidate, George Clinton.

The last time an elector voted for a candidate from another party was in 1972, when a Republican from Virginia voted for the Libertarian candidate, John Hospers, instead of the eventual winner, Richard M. Nixon. A single elector has refused to vote for the party’s presidential candidate in 11 elections.

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Poll: Republicans Trust Trump Over Ryan

New survey suggests GOP voters looking for populist leadership to carry the party into the future.

A majority of Republicans trust Donald Trump more than House Speaker Paul Ryan to lead the party, according to an NBC/Survey Monkey poll released Tuesday.

The poll showed that 63 percent of Republican respondents trusted Trump’s leadership over Ryan’s, while 34 percent preferred to place their trust in Ryan over Trump. When Democrats were asked the same question, 84 percent said they trusted Ryan more as a leader — while just 4 percent picked Trump.

When Trump supporters were isolated as a separate group and asked whose leadership they trusted more for the GOP, 72 percent chose Trump, while just 25 percent chose Ryan. When the supporters for Hillary Clinton, Gary Johnson, and Jill Stein were separated, 2 percent, 13 percent, and 12 percent picked Trump over Ryan, respectively.

This poll comes amid internal Republican Party upheaval over which wing of the GOP should take the helm after the 2016 election.

Trump and Ryan have engaged in several contentious spats — most notably when the House speaker announced after the release of the 11 year-old “Access Hollywood” tape that he would no longer campaign with Trump and instead would focus his efforts on re-electing and maintaining a Republican Congress.

At the time, Trump lambasted Ryan in a barrage of tweets and in verbal remarks.

The GOP nominee offered a more conciliatory message during a rally in Florida Sunday. 

“Go out and vote — and that includes helping me re-elect Republicans all over the place,” Trump urged his supporters, saying that a “Republican House and Senate” was key to implementing his agenda as president.

“I hope they help me too! It’d be nice if they help us too, right?” Trump couldn’t help adding.

The poll featured the responses of 32,225 likely voters and was issued between Oct. 17-23.

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What If All the Polls Are Wrong? Signs abound that Trump could be doing far better than the MSM says

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For all those sipping a cocktail right now in a Manhattan skyscraper, toasting the swift demise of one Donald J. Trump, here’s a fly in your pretentious dirty martini: There are signs that the belligerent billionaire may be doing significantly better in the presidential race than many polls indicate.

New voter registration is surging in several swing states and appears to be lopsided in favor of the Republican Party. Moreover, a recent analysis of absentee ballots in Florida reveals an unprecedented number of low-propensity voters registered this year — presumably to support the outsider candidate (hint: It’s not Hillary Clinton).

“Nobody’s been polling these people, nobody’s been marketing to these people.”

“Republicans have continued gaining ground in recent months in voter registration in Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Iowa,” Politico reported last week. In Pennsylvania, more than 85,000 former Democrats have switched to the Republican Party this year. This is nearly three times the number of those who made the opposite switch.

In North Carolina, Politico reported, “Democrats’ voter registration advantage shrunk by 44,000 between June 2015 and May 2016” and their “advantage had dwindled to 641,000” as of Aug. 13. In Florida, Republicans have added nearly 70,000 voters and the Democrats’ registration advantage has more than halved since 2012.

Florida Primary Election Absentee Ballots
  • 855,000 ballots cast by mail by Aug. 25
  • Over 25% from voters who didn’t vote in the last 4 elections
  • 20% from voters who voted in 1 of the last 4 elections
  • New primary voters include 90,000 Republicans
Source: Tampa Bay Times

Data from Florida also suggests this election could see an unprecedented turnout of first-time or second-time voters. In examining absentee ballots for the upcoming Florida Senate primary election, the Florida Chamber of Commerce discovered “a huge spike in mail voting by people who rarely vote in primary elections,” the Tampa Bay Times reported.

According to the report, nearly half of the mail ballots returned for the primary election are from those who voted in one or fewer of the last four primary elections. “We’re in unprecedented, uncharted territory,” said Florida Chamber President and CEO Mark Wilson. “Nobody’s been polling these people, nobody’s been marketing to these people.”

No one has been polling these people — and these people may very well decide the election. This is one of the reasons why most of the polls which have shown Trump losing in a landslide are not to be trusted — most polling companies reach out to those who are historically politically active, not those who are historically apathetic.

Furthermore, many of the polls which paint the most depressing picture for the Trump campaign are heavily weighted toward registered Republicans and Democrats, when in reality most registered American voters are independent — and independent voters appear to lean Trump. A recent Emerson poll for example found that Trump leads independents in Ohio by 47 percent to 30 percent, 39 percent to 38 percent in Michigan, and 43 percent to 37 percent in Pennsylvania. Some studies have also indicated that Trump consistently performs better in anonymous, online polls, suggesting that he has stronger support than many traditional polls seem to indicate.

“We saw the commentariat and we saw the polling industry doing everything they could to demoralize our campaign,” Brexit proponent Nigel Farage told a crowd of jubilant Trump supporters last week. They may very well be doing the same thing in the U.S. But even within polling industry weighted in Clinton’s favor, there are signs she’s slipping. A new Monmouth poll released Monday showed Clinton’s lead sinking to only 7 points over Trump.

“This is huge,” said Marian Johnson, an expert on Florida politics and the senior vice president of political strategy for the Florida Chamber of Commerce, of the Florida absentee ballot revelations.

“I can envision election night when the votes are counted that certain people win that nobody thought had a chance, and that being attributed to this trend.” Right now nobody — well, nobody in the commentariat, anyway — thinks Trump has a chance. They could be wrong.

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Trump pollster: ‘There’s a big hidden Trump vote’

They’re not exactly the Nixon era “silent majority,” but both Republican and Democratic pollsters claim that there is a secret vote for Donald Trump showing up in some polls.

The Trump campaign on Sunday stated flatly there is a “big hidden Trump vote” in the nation.

And during the recent Democratic convention, a top pollster agreed, saying there is a “secret Trump vote.”

Longtime Republican pollster and Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway explained on the Today show that the hidden vote is seen when anonymous online polls are compared to phone call interview polls where people have to be more public in stating who they support.

For example, the new Reuters poll had Trump and Hillary Clinton just three points apart, where others that are phone survey based out Sunday showed a greater gap.

“The Reuters poll, which is an online poll, where Donald Trump is three points behind Hillary Clinton nationally, and I think that the important point to note there is that when you have online polls as opposed to telephone polls, Mr. Trump tends to do better, and that’s because the online polls approximate the ballot box, where you’re issuing your vote privately,” she said.

“We think there’s a big hidden Trump vote in this country,” said Conway, who added that Trump internal polls project “tighter” results in battleground states.

Her comments echoed those from Democratic pollster Celinda Lake who during the Democratic convention said that her side sees a secret Trump vote among white males.

“I worry that there is a bit of a secret Trump vote,” said the influential pollster at an event attended by Secrets.

She has proof revealed in polls that find more white male support when live people are doing the interviewing and less support for Clinton in anonymous online surveys.

“The pattern is in the online surveys, even if you control for demographics, Trump does three to nine points better than in telephone surveys. So it really does suggest that there is a secret vote for Donald Trump,” said Lake.

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Donald Trump on Energy

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“I’m in favor of nuclear energy, very strongly in favor of nuclear energy,” Trump said.

Here’s Where The 2016 Candidates Stand On Nuclear Power

The Daily Caller – Feb 20, 2016
“We have to protect your coal industry which is being decimated” by EPA regulations, Trump added.

[VIDEO] Clinton: ‘We’re Going To Put A Lot Of Coal Miners Out Of Business’

The Daily Caller – Mar 14, 2016
“We are going to bring the coal industry back 100 %” Trump said.

Trump campaigns in Southwest Virginia ahead of Super Tuesday

WJHL – Mar 1, 2016
“Energy independence is a requirement if America is to become great again,” Trump said Tuesday.

The Trump‑Cruz Brawl

The Atlantic – Jan 20, 2016
Trump suggested clean energy policies to reduce CO2 emissions would “imperil jobs” and “the middle class and lower classes.”

Donald Trump vs. the Pope on immigration & climate change

KVLY-TV – Sep 24, 2015
He discounts the “negative impact of natural gas, oil, and coal.”

Opinion: Donald Trump’s USA Inc. will kill our climate, our economy and our democracy

MarketWatch – Aug 25, 2015
He writes that sources of “green energy” are “really just an expensive way of making the tree-huggers feel good about themselves.”

Seven things in Donald Trump’s new book you probably won’t hear at a rally

The Washington Post – Nov 3, 2015
And Donald Trump said Ohio’s prosperity under Gov. John Kasich was a stroke of luck, “John got lucky with a thing called fracking, ok, he hit oil,” he said.

Moderate GOP senators form green working group

Politico – Oct 29, 2015
“I consider climate change to be not one of our big problems,” Trump said Thursday, when asked about the debate’s concluding exchange on climate change.

Carly Fiorina looking to capitalize on another strong debate

WFTS-TV – Sep 17, 2015

Donald Trump on Veterans

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“But actually, I raised, as you know, $6 million for the vets by not doing the debate,” Trump said, referring to his alternate fund-raiser for military veterans timed against the Fox News candidates’ debate.

Donald Trump Confirms to Sean Hannity: ‘Everything Now Is Good With Fox’

TheWrap – Feb 3, 2016
“The current state of the Department of Veterans Affairs is absolutely unacceptable,” Trump said at a rally in front of the retired battleship USS Wisconsin.

Trump says 300,000 veterans died waiting VA care

PolitiFact.com – Nov 9, 2015
Trump wrote: “Thanks to McCain and his Senate colleague Bernie Sanders, their legislation to cover up the VA scandal, in which 1,000+ veterans died waiting for medical care, made sure no one has been punished, charged, jailed, fined or held responsible. McCain has abandoned our veterans. I will fight for them.”

After ‘not a war hero’ remark, Donald Trump says John McCain has ‘done nothing’ for veterans

PolitiFact.com – Jul 21, 2015
In a USA Today op-ed published Sunday evening, Trump said his “record of veteran support is well-documented. I served as co-chairman of the New York Vietnam Veterans Memorial Commission and was responsible, with a small group, for getting it built.”

Leader of New York Veterans Group Defends Donald Trump

ABC News – Jul 20, 2015
“They did a poll recently and I’m very popular with the vets because they know I’ll fix the veterans administration,” Trump said.

The Interview Between Sarah Palin and Donald Trump Some Say Was ‘Inane’ and ‘Bonkers’

TheBlaze – Aug 29, 2015
“The power to choose will stop the wait time backlogs and force the VA to improve and compete if the department wants to keep receiving veterans’ healthcare dollars,” Trump stated in his plan.

Donald Trump Releases Plan to Reform Veterans Affairs

ABC News – Oct 31, 2015
“Veterans Administration is slow…I’ll tear it down and build it from scratch.”

Dump the Trump Campaign Gears Up

Random Lengths – Sep 17, 2015
“During my entire business career, I have always made supporting Veterans a top priority because our heroes deserve the very best for defending our freedom,” Trump said in a statement on Sunday, pointing to his work on a veterans memorial and as grand marshal of the New York City Veterans’ Day Parade.

Trump Could Bump GOP Veterans Off Debate Stage

WGBH NEWS – Jul 21, 2015

Donald Trump on National security

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“The fact is that we need unpredictability,” Trump said of his openness to using nuclear weapons.

Donald Trump open to nuclear retaliation after Brussels attack

CBS News – Mar 24, 2016
As for his supporters, Trump said in Ohio, “It’s not necessarily loyal to me, it’s loyal to the country. They want great security. They want great military. They want to take care of their vets. They want a border. They want a wall.”

Trump blames ‘planned attack’ by ‘professional’ protesters for not taking stage in Chicago

Chicago Tribune – Mar 12, 2016
When dealing with terrorists, Trump said, “we should go for waterboarding and we should go tougher than waterboarding.”

GOP debate: Trump’s character draws focus

BP News – Mar 4, 2016
GOP front-runner Donald Trump also chimed in, tweeting, “Do you all remember how beautiful and safe a place Brussels was. Not anymore, it is from a different world! U.S. must be vigilant and smart!.”

DC Heightens Security After Brussels Terror Attacks

Roll Call – Mar 22, 2016
“Our jobs are being sucked away, our military can’t beat ISIS… our borders are like Swiss cheese,” Trump said to the energetic crowd.

How to go: Donald Trump in Dayton Saturday

Dayton Daily News – Mar 12, 2016
Trump argued in a USA Today op-ed published last weekend that he “would support and endorse the use of enhanced interrogation techniques if the use of these methods would enhance the protection and safety of the nation.

Trump: ‘Torture Works, OK Folks?’

The Weekly Standard – Feb 17, 2016
The military under Trump, he said, will “be so big, so strong, so powerful, nobody is going mess with us.”

New Hampshire Primary 2016: Republican winner Donald Trump declares ‘We’re going to make …

MassLive.com – Feb 10, 2016
“We need much tougher, much smarter leadership – and we need it NOW!” Trump said on Twitter.

Carnage renews debate over military and terrorism

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution – Nov 16, 2015
“I will build a military so strong that we’ll never have to use it because they are going to be saying, ‘I’m not going to mess with that guy,’ ” he said, without explaining how he would bolster America’s defense.

Donald Trump drops dime on Lindsey Graham, gives out senator’s cellphone number

The Post and Courier – Jul 21, 2015
Mr. Trump said he would like to “build a safe zone in Syria, build a big, beautiful safe zone, and you have whatever it is, so they can live.”

Political News, Now.

New York Times – Nov 13, 2015
“We have to have a strong military so people don’t mess with us,” Trump said.

Fourth Republican debate winds up in Milwaukee

Newsday – Nov 10, 2015
On trade , Trump said our country is in trouble if, “…we don’t get smart, very very quickly, on trade. On defense. We have to build our country big. Powerful.”

Katz: First Thoughts On Trump In Indy

WIBC – Apr 20, 2016
“Waterboarding would be fine. If they can expand the laws, I would do a lot more than waterboarding,” Trump said on NBC’s “Today” program, adding he believed torture could produce useful leads.

Trump backs waterboarding and ‘a lot more’ after Brussels attacks

WHTC – Mar 22, 2016

Donald Trump on Budget and spending

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“We are going to cut the Department of Education,” Trump said when asked if he would cut spending to curb the national debt.

Trump speaks in MSNBC town hall to counter Cruz, Rubio appearance on CNN

The Dallas Morning News – Feb 18, 2016
Trump added that as a result of the funding plan, Americans will have to “absorb higher deficits, greater debt, less economic liberty, and more corporate welfare.”

Donald Trump Excoriates House Republicans Over Budget Deal: Republicans ‘Threw the Towel In, …

TheBlaze – Dec 18, 2015
Trump, asked for details of his budget plan, said, “We will cut so much, your head will spin.”

Dana Milbank: Donald Trump’s ‘Captain Underpants’ Campaign

Investor’s Business Daily – Feb 26, 2016
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