Don't Lock Her Up

By Dean L

I'm just spit-balling here, but it makes sense: What if the best course of action for president Trump, and for Republicans is to make sure Hillary Clinton, as corrupt and probably felonious as she is, does not get charged for all of the nefarious activity surrounding her campaign for the presidency?  Further, what if the smart thing to do is to not have a special investigator go after her?
The look of supreme confidence.

Hear me out.  

It does not make sense for Donald Trump to prosecute Hillary Clinton for a number of reasons.  Obviously coming across as a sore winner is never good, but it goes deeper.  If the #ReleaseTheMemo memo is as explosive as is expected (I refer you to the permanently haunted visage of Democrat FBI/DOJ-excuser Adam Schiff),  then the correct target should be the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI and not the Clintons or former president Obama for that matter, regardless of the level of their involvement.  Even if it turns out to be really, really bad.

The laser focus of draining the swamp on the DOJ and the FBI.  With the backing of sunlight of the crimes and/or deliberate lack of due diligence with respect to all things dossier and Clinton email scandal there will be plenty to uncover and it could take years.

That allows the on-going narrative of "look what the Democrats were hiding" and "look at all these things we still need to fix" and "look at all the unresolved corruption issues". That's a political plus but it's not even the biggest one.

The real win in keeping Hillary Clinton hanging in the wind is that it pressures those in the FBI and DOJ to be more forthcoming in hopes of getting a prosecutorial deal.  And it still gets better.  There has been an underlying theme among Democrats that the Clintons had a stranglehold on the institutions surrounding the Democratic party as well as deeply rooted connections to the bureaucracy of government.  The Democrats, many of them at least, have been trying to shed that yoke on the party.  So far there has not been any great ice breaking on that effort. 

Why would the president help the Democrats resolve that by giving them cover to distance themselves from the Clintons?  There's no gain in that.  It helps drain the Democrats' swamp but does nothing to chip away at the deep state.  The deep state needs cleaning, but the Republicans need the Democrats to remain mired in an intra-party fight, right through 2020 and certainly at a minimum the remainder of 2018.

It's a cynical view, but control the investigation timing and you control the mood of the country. You control an eagerness on the right to see prosecutions with a Clinton facing charges as the carrot to dangle.  Conversely on the left, you keep them unbalanced in their desire to free themselves from Clinton fealty versus a real fear of not wanting to be on the wrong side of the Clinton machine.  My advice is simple: even if you have the goods on Hillary Clinton, don't lock her up, at least not until after 2021.

Sore? You Mean Like Wipe it With Ben-Gay??

Top 5 problems with "Oprah Winfrey for president"

By Dean L

Oprah Winfrey is no Hillary Clinton - she's personable (at least she seems to be), her personal favorability ratings would be much higher than Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Like president Trump she's run a business successfully. She's got Trump-level name recognition which is a huge political asset. Unlike Hillary Clinton she connects with women. Unlike Hillary Clinton she connects with African Americans (at least females), and unlike Hillary Clinton she's relatively wholesome and unsullied by years of scandal. Unlike Hillary Clinton she'd have the full force backing of former president Obama.   She's also liberal, having refused to allow equal access to Sarah Palin to her audience after having allowed Obama unfettered access.

Now, Hollywood and others seems to have anointed her as the one to unseat president Trump in 2020.  Seriously:

[UPDATE: NBC has since removed the tweet, blaming it on a 3rd party. Right. Here's the tweet captured below by The Daily Caller]

Are we doomed to a return to socialist policies because a one term president Trump will be unceremoniously and soundly defeated by Oprah Winfrey?  Not so fast. There are a lot of problems with Oprah Winfrey as a presidential candidate.  Here are the Top 5.

5 She's just a happy version of president Trump.

The Democrats have hammered the voters with the message that president Trump was an unqualified candidate and is an unfit president.  The unfitness included the fact that he was an outsider who had no government experience.  While voters on the right saw that fact as a positive because they recognize that government is if not broken, functioning poorly.  Many liberal voters have been pre-conditioned for the past two plus years to expect failure from outsiders.  Oprah Winfrey is as much an outsider as president Trump was.  So are Democrat voters now expected to pivot hard to the idea that outsiders are no longer ineffectual idiots but visionary masterminds ready to solve all of our problems?  That's not just a simple pivot and it will take a lot of work that may, as a side effect let president Trump off the hook to some degree. The outcome for Oprah even if successful, would be that she's a happy, smart version of president Trump. I'm not sure that plays well with the base left.

4. She is actually part of the establishment.

The establishment is not just Washington D.C. and party insiders - it includes the media and most certainly Hollywood. Oprah Winfrey is well connected politically, and clearly politically she has an established set of ideas that well, align with former president Obama's ideas.   That's establishment. Ringing Hollywood endorsements after the Golden Globe Awards speech she made, further indicates she's an insider.  I doubt anyone seriously thinks she couldn't get Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Eric Holder, Hillary or Bill Clinton on the phone as easily as if she were ordering Domino's pizza. The same is true for Meryl Streep or Wolf Blitzer.

Being part of the establishment is in many eyes considered being part of the problem not part of the solution.  Painting Oprah as an insider would not be a hard job for team Trump. That will rev up the base on the right and also annoy a significant portion of voters on the left, namely...

3. Bernie Sanders voters won't just warm up to her

The left split among progressives and establishment liberals wasn't entirely exploited by president Trump's election team, perhaps deliberately. Bernie Sanders was clearly cheated during the Democratic primaries and his followers have probably not forgotten that.  Proclamations that the process and Super Delegate issue have all been fixed (so far they haven't) alongside an anointing of Oprah as the savior of the party and of America at large isn't going to be uncontested. Furthering the split, millennials are not as up to speed on who Oprah is as are their Gen X and older counterparts.

The split of the base into camps on the left is as real as it is on the right. Except the left has a more problematic situation because of Hillary's cheating.  The establishment has been tarnished and is viewed suspiciously.  Millennials are already less inclined to vote and the coronation of another candidate might not just turn them off in 2020, it could have the potential to be a generational shift.

2. Does Oprah really need the hassle?

Oprah Winfrey is almost 64 years old.  On election day she would be 66.  That's younger than president Trump. But Oprah Winfrey is worth nearly $3 billion. Her image is pretty good.  What benefit does it do her to slog through a brutal campaign season - primary plus general election, getting muck thrown at her, and possibly financing her campaign with her own money, but having to schmooze for more, and do appearances all over the country at a hectic pace?  It takes a particular constitution to be able to do that and a particular drive to want to do that.  It's not clear (yet) that she has either of those qualities, and if she doesn't have the desire in particular, she won't run.


1.  The Trump record versus the Obama record.

If the economy performs in president Trump's first term as expected, the contrast with the Obama record will be truly stark. Who will march to the polls determined to re-institute policies that clearly hobbled the prosperity and well-being of Americans? 

Of course that last item has yet to be proven (consistently, despite the strong start).  And  Oprah Winfrey would be a formidable candidate.  She has the basic appeal necessary from a Democratic optics perspective - gender, heritage, photogenic, etc. But she is every bit as beatable as was Hillary Clinton and arguably also former president Obama.