One wacky nut job to another – Trump v Coulter

Once a strong support of Donald trump for president and as president, Ann Coulter has turned against him. In the weekend she blasted Trump over lack of progress on the US-Mexico border wall, and as he does when criticised, Trump has turned on her. In a recent tweet he called Coulter ‘a wacky nut job’, which is pot, kettle stuff.

Fox News has also been a strong supporter of Trump, and this is playing out on Fox.

Fox News in January:  Ann Coulter rips Trump over border wall on Bill Maher’s show after attacking president via Twitter

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter both blasted and defended President Trump during an appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Friday night — hours after she ripped into the president on Twitter for cutting a deal with Democrats to temporarily end the partial government shutdown without funding for his border wall.

“I promise you the country would be run much better if I had a veto over what Donald Trump is doing. It’s crazy that I expect a president to keep the promise he made every day for 18 months”.

“Why hasn’t Trump been able to get it through for the first two years? Because the Republicans don’t want it.”

She also said “someone has got to read the Constitution to him” when asked if she thought Trump would declare a national emergency on the southern border in order to get work started on the wall.

During Trump’s State of the Union address to Congress in February, Coulter labeled the speech as “the lamest, sappiest, most intentionally tear-jerking SOTU ever.”

During the weekend:

Coulter, a far right commentator, may only have a relatively small support base, but Trump seems to be gradually pissing off more and more former supporters.

Jess Watters and Donald J. Trump aren’t being very honest. Trump’s approval rating dropped from 45.5 (aggregate) soon after he took office and hasn’t recovered since, peaking at 43.1 last October and now on 41.8.

https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/trump-approval-ratings/

Meanwhile  In budget, Trump to ask Congress for $8.6 billion for border wall

President Donald Trump on Monday will ask the U.S. Congress for an additional $8.6 billion to help pay for the wall he promised to build on the southern border with Mexico to combat illegal immigration and drug trafficking, officials familiar with his 2020 budget request told Reuters.

The demand is more than six times what Congress allocated for border projects in each of the past two fiscal years, and 6 percent more than Trump has corralled by invoking emergency powers this year.

Democrats, who oppose the wall as unnecessary and immoral, control the U.S. House of Representatives, making it unlikely the Republican president’s request will win congressional passage.

Asked on Fox News Sunday about the new funding request and if there would be another budget fight over Trump’s wall, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said, “I suppose there will be … He’s going to stay with his wall and he’s going to stay with the border security theme. I think it’s essential.”

Trump’s wall request is based off a 2017 plan put forward by Customs and Border Protection officials to build or replace 722 miles (1,162 km) of barrier along the border, which in total is estimated to cost about $18 billion.

So far, only 111 miles (179 km) have been built or are underway, officials said. In fiscal 2017, $341 million in funding was allocated for 40 miles (64 km) of wall, and in 2018, another $1.375 billion was directed to 82 miles (132 km).

For fiscal 2019, Trump demanded $5.7 billion in wall funds, but Congress appropriated only $1.375 billion for border fencing projects.

Following the rejection of his wall funding demand, Trump declared the border was a national emergency – a move opposed by Democrats and some Republicans – and redirected $601 million in Treasury Department forfeiture funds, $2.5 billion in Defense Department drug interdiction funds and $3.6 billion from a military construction budget, for total spending of $8.1 billion for the wall.

Trump’s wall spending is being contested from the left, and the lack of wall building is being slammed from Coulter on the right.

Trump blinked then caved on shutdown

Donald Trump failed to secure funding for a border wall with Mexico for the two years that the republicans held majorities in both Congress and the Senate. He blames the then speaker Paul Ryan (and probably a lot of others).

He seemed to think he could heavy the new Democrat House leadership into funding his wall, so he precipitated a partial Government shutdown and demanded it. And the new House leader Nancy Pelosi wouldn’t budge. If she had given in it would have probably set the scene for ongoing heavy handed demands from Trump.

It resulted in the longest government shutdown ever. Trump, already viewed by a majority unfavourably, started to tank in approval polls.

Pelosi withdrew her invitation to Trump for the annual State Of The Union speech in Congress until after the impasse was resolved. Trump threatened to speak elsewhere, but ended up blinking and postponing it.

The shutdown continued, and the bad press continued, and the polls dipped more.

Then on Friday Trump caved in, for now anyway.

Reuters: Backing down, Trump agrees to end shutdown without border wall money

President Donald Trump agreed under mounting pressure on Friday to end a 35-day-old partial U.S. government shutdown without getting the $5.7 billion he had demanded from Congress for a border wall, handing a political victory to Democrats.

The Republican president’s agreement to end the shuttering of about a quarter of the federal government without securing wall money – an astonishing retreat – came three days after he had insisted, “We will not Cave!”

But Trump vowed that the shutdown would resume on Feb. 15 if he is dissatisfied with the results of a bipartisan House-Senate conference committee’s border security negotiations, or he would declare a national emergency in order to get the wall money without congressional approval.

He has been threatening to declare a national emergency for some time – but if it was actually an emergency why wait? It hasn’t suddenly become an emergency.

With polls showing most Americans blamed him for the painful shutdown – the longest of its kind in U.S. history – Trump embraced a way out of the crisis that Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had been pushing for weeks. The shutdown, which pitted Pelosi against Trump, was her first test since assuming the post three weeks ago.

Democrats remained unyielding in their opposition to a wall, one of Trump’s signature campaign promises that they call ineffective, costly and immoral.

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden on a chilly, sunny winter day, Trump said he would act to ensure that federal workers get their back pay “very quickly, or as soon as possible.”

That’s a change in stance for Trump.

But this doesn’t end the problem, it just postpones it. And it may make Trump’s problems bigger. He had been encouraged into talking and tough on wall funding by some on the hard right, and they are not happy.

Fox News: Ann Coulter rips Trump over border wall on Bill Maher’s show after attacking president via Twitter

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter both blasted and defended President Trump during an appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Friday night — hours after she ripped into the president on Twitter for cutting a deal with Democrats to temporarily end the partial government shutdown without funding for his border wall.

Before appearing on the show, Coulter spent a good part of Friday blasting Trump on Twitter for accepting a temporary funding bill to reopen the government without money for the border wall.

“Good news for George Herbert Walker Bush: As of today, he is no longer the biggest wimp ever to serve as President of the United States,” she wrote in a series of tweets.

On the Maher show:

“I promise you the country would be run much better if I had a veto over what Donald Trump is doing. It’s crazy that I expect a president to keep the promise he made every day for 18 months.”

“Why hasn’t Trump been able to get it through for the first two years? Because the Republicans don’t want it.”

“I’m telling you how to get Trump,” Coulter said. “He promised something for 18 months and he lied about it. That’s how you get Trump. It’s not this Russia nonsense.”

This may damage Trump’s core support.

As is his habit Trump claimed some sort of victory on twitter:

“I wish people would read or listen to my words on the Border Wall. This was in no way a concession. It was taking care of millions of people who were getting badly hurt by the Shutdown with the understanding that in 21 days, if no deal is done, it’s off to the races!”

His words on the border wall have been a moving target as he fails to get funding.

He diidn’t care about the millions of people getting hurt by the shutdown when he made it happen – he even claimed that many unpaid workers supported what he had inflicted on them.

This has also inflicted a lot of damage on Trump’s ego. This sort of report won’t help: Art of the cave: Trump folds, finally

The man whose name graces the cover of “The Art of the Deal” called it a compromise, but let’s be clear: His agreement with Democrats to end the punch-yourself-in-the-face government shutdown was a complete capitulation, brought on in a panic when the gears of American air travel began grinding to a halt.

A less pigheaded politician would learn a hard lesson from how the embarrassing standoff backfired; he found himself unable to squirm out of responsibility for a cataclysm he had proudly announced was of his own making.

With Trump, the capacity for evolution is very much an open question. He spent most of his Rose Garden remarks repeating fearmongering tropes, most of them apocryphal, about the urgent need for a 30-foot-high wall along 1,000 miles of southern border.

It would be insane to think that we could be back in the same mess three weeks from now, but remember who sits in the Oval Office.

With Pelosi and the Democrats standing up to him until he blinked then caved. he next couple of years are going to be challenge for Trump, especially if the hard core right also turn against him.

At least 4 grandparents

There’s been a lot of bizarre things about the US election, and there was one very odd tweet today.

If only people with at least 4 grandparents born in America were voting, Trump would win in a 50-state landslide.

At least 4 grandparents? How many can you have?

Trump wouldn’t be able to vote for himself, his mother was an immigrant from Scotland, so at least two of his grandparents were not born in the US. And his father’s parents came from Germany, so that’s another two not born in the US.

Trump’s children wouldn’t be able to vote for him.

Wikipedia on Coulter “All eight of her paternal great-great-grandparents were immigrants”. That can’t be right, you usually have up to eight. But whatever, there won’t be many Americans who don’t have immigrants in their family.

Only one of my grandparents was born in New Zealand. In a decent democracy that shouldn’t exclude me from voting here.

Another weird story (that has been mentioned here):

Top prize for their weirdest story of the campaign? That would probably have to be last week’s conspiracy theory about a Satanic child trafficking cabal linked to HRC’s chief of staff John Podesta, and allegedly operating out of the Comet Ping Pong Pizza Parlour in Washington DC.

 The story is here.

And if you’re up for some deep diving in the wingnut mindset, you could also check out the Twitter account of Pizza Party Ben (the chief theorist behind the pizza–is-code-for-child-trafficking story) right here. PPB’s pizza evidence cache can be found here.