Progressive Breakfast for July 22

Morning Message

Trump’s Terrifying Pitch: It Was Better Than You Think

...this speech needed to be long. Trump needed to present a number of false and contradictory identities to the electorate, and that takes time. He was both a firebrand populist and a rock-ribbed Republican. He was an enemy of big business, and he swore to deregulate industry. He was compassionate toward all people – but he’ll build a wall to keep millions of people out. Trump also needed time to present an America that’s a study in contrasts ... a desperate and dangerous dystopia that will become an Eden as soon as he is sworn into office. That’s Demagoguery 101: Terrify, then reassure. ... And Trump’s eerily good at it.

Trump Goes Full Nixon

Trump delivers “grim” capstone address. W. Post: “…Trump offered a powerful echo of Richard Nixon almost 50 years ago … a law-and-order message in the hope of summoning an army of disaffected and forgotten voters large enough to topple the political status quo in November.”

Trump fact-challenged as usual. NYT: “Many of Mr. Trump’s facts appear to be true, though the Republican presidential nominee sometimes failed to offer the entire story, or provide all of the context that might help to explain his numbers. And in some cases, the facts seemed inflated or misleading…”

Barely mentioned the economy. W. Post: “[He] only briefly nod[ded] to the pillars of the Reagan formula for opportunity and prosperity. He [spent] five sentences on a tax-cut package that is presently being revised.”

“The party I was part of is dead” tweets Meghan McCain.

Trump “dissolving” the GOP, says NYT’s David Brooks: “There’s no actual agenda being put in its place, just nostalgic spasms that, as David Frum has put it, are part George Wallace and part Henry Wallace. Trump’s policy agenda, such as it is, is mostly a series of vague and defensive recoils: build a wall, ban Muslims, withdraw from the world … Law and order is a strange theme for a candidate who radiates conflict and disorder. Some rich children are careless that way; they break things and other people have to clean up the mess.”

Trump’s speech was a “Terrifying Display of Nightmarish Authoritarianism” says Reason’s Peter Suderman: “It was a relentlessly grim and gloomy picture of America, built on thinly disguised racial distrust and paranoia. It was a portrait that was also essentially false. Violent crime has been steadily falling for more than two decades. Immigrants are less prone to criminality than native-born Americans … Trump is the threat, but the Republican party as an institution deserves nearly as much scorn as Trump for making this happen.”

Bernie Sanders live tweets Trump speech. The Hill quotes: ““Those who voted for me will not support Trump who has made bigotry and divisiveness the cornerstone of his campaign … What a hypocrite! If Trump wants to ‘fix’ trade he can start by making his products in the US, not low-wage countries abroad.”

Signs Point To Kaine

Sen. Tim Kaine tops the VP list, reports AP: “Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine has emerged as the leading contender to join the Democratic ticket as Hillary Clinton’s running mate, according to two Democrats, who both cautioned that Clinton has not made a final decision and could yet change directions. The announcement of Clinton’s pick could come as early as Friday afternoon in Florida…”

NBC’s Chuck Todd tweets: “HRC has a campaign event in Miami Sat morning and Tim Kaine’s bilingual. If you want that as an asset, then you’d showcase it on day 1.”

“Liberals Balk” headlines NYT: “Liberals say they are concerned about Mr. Kaine’s positions on global trade deals and Wall Street regulation. He has been an outspoken advocate of free trade and has defended the North American Free Trade Agreement, which many voters in Rust Belt states blame for the loss of manufacturing jobs to Mexico. He voted in support of ‘fast track’ authority for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a 12-nation trade pact that President Obama has championed.”

“Liberals lash out at Tim Kaine over banking letter” reports Politico: “The liberal groups are furious that Kaine, along with several other Democratic senators, signed a letter urging regulators to rethink how banking rules cover regional banks. ‘Let’s be really clear: It should be disqualifying for any potential Democratic vice presidential candidate to be part of a lobbyist-driven effort to help banks dodge consumer protection standards…,’ Democracy for America executive director Charles Chamberlain said in a statement Thursday.”

Unions aim to help Clinton in Rust Belt. Bloomberg: “Working America is an AFL-CIO affiliate group for workers who have no union. Today it claims 3 million members … ‘We’ve been talking to the targets of the Trump phenomenon for 13 years,’ says Working America’s executive director, Karen Nussbaum. ‘We know these folks. We understand their pain.’ The group aims to have 500 canvassers in the field by Election Day and to hold 2 million face-to-face conversations this year.”

Ailes Out

Roger Ailes out as Fox News CEO. Politico: “It was a stunning fall for one of the most powerful people in the media industry, who built Fox News into a ratings juggernaut and a hugely influential platform for Republican politics.”

Fox News could become less political. NPR: “James Murdoch in particular is known to favor a model more like the Murdochs’ Sky News in Britain, which is lively but less openly political. And the Murdoch sons would like the company to reflect what they believe are more 21st century values.”