Big govt, Elections, Politics

How Pete Buttigieg Could Hurt Trump in the Rust Belt

Pete Buttigieg is many things.

At just 37, he is the mayor of South Bend, Indiana. He is a military veteran and a deeply religious gay man who is married but also enjoys sandwiches from (anti-same-sex marriage) Chick-fil-A. He is a Harvard-educated Rhodes scholar who speaks eight languages. He is the first ever millennial candidate for president and, so far, the only Democratic hopeful to appear on the “Fox News Sunday” show.

“I’m all of those things,” said Buttigieg — pronounced “Boot-edge-edge” — in an interview with the New York Post. “I try not to have any kind of attribute … be totally defining,” he added. Critics say these attributes are the very reasons why he can’t beat Donald Trump. His supporters say they are the very reasons he can.

Mayor Pete, as he likes to be called, strikes a tone that is kinder and less combative than the insult-driven politics of Trump and the Democratic Party’s far-left members. His boyish good looks, intelligence and military background are undoubtedly appealing, as is his faith.

“Scripture tells us to look after the least among us, that it also counsels humility and teaches us about what’s bigger than ourselves,” said Buttigieg, a devout Episcopalian. “It points the way toward an inclusive and unselfish politics that I strive to practice, whether I’m talking about my faith on the stump or not.”

Mayor Pete’s politics are already gaining traction. Since launching his exploratory committee to run for president on Jan. 23, he has already raised $7 million for his campaign. A recent Quinnipiac poll found that 4 percent of Democrats would vote for him — the same number that supports Elizabeth Warren, who has been a U.S. senator for six years.
The fact that he was born and bred in the American Rust Belt is possibly his biggest asset.

“Our party can and should do better in the industrial Midwest,” Buttigieg said. “I’m convinced that so many people in this part of the country are already with us, much more than with the other party on issues, on substance, on policy.”
He said his experience in his hometown of South Bend proves there are solutions that work besides a “promise to turn back the clock.”

When Buttigieg was first elected to office in South Bend in 2011, the city was on its knees. Job growth was nonexistent, and like many Rust Belt cities with declining industry, it had been hemorrhaging jobs since the ’70s.
First, he improved the cosmetics of the town by demolishing more than 1,000 abandoned homes, and then he focused on revitalizing it by attracting hundreds of millions in private investment for commercial development.

You won’t find Buttigieg ridiculing fellow Midwestern voters or taking them for granted, the way Hillary Clinton’s campaign did in 2015. After the University of Notre Dame, based in South Bend, invited her to attend their prestigious St. Patrick’s Day event, her campaign declined, telling organizers that “white Catholics were not the audience she needed to spend time reaching out to,” as The New York Times wrote.

Trump would go on to win those white Catholic votes in 2016 — 52 percent of them, according to Pew’s exit polls, reversing the gains Democrats made when Barack Obama earned their votes in 2008 and 2012.

Even so, Buttigieg’s religious beliefs haven’t prevented him from taking progressive positions on major issues.
He supports abortions into the third trimester out of a belief in “freedom from government,” he said. And he won’t rule out tax hikes. “If the only way I can get all of us paid parental leave, universal health care, dramatically improved child care, better education, good infrastructure and, therefore, longer life expectancy and a healthier economy is to raise revenue, then we should be honest about that,” he said.

And although natural gas leads to good, solid jobs in the Rust Belt, he is a big booster of wind and solar power. “I think the goal still has to be focused on renewables,” he said.

But just because Buttigieg has a progressive platform doesn’t mean he’ll get an easy ride from far-left Democrats. Last month, the woke crowd at Slate questioned the young mayor’s credentials with a since-changed headline that read “Is Pete Buttigieg just another white male candidate, or does his gayness count as diversity?”

And just because Buttigieg is from the Rust Belt doesn’t mean he can win a general election in places like Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, especially when you compare his platform to Trump’s.

“He has to share their values on bread-and-butter issues like lower taxes, regulations and religious liberty,” warned Dr. G. Terry Madonna, director of the Center for Politics and Public Affairs at Franklin & Marshall College. If he doesn’t, “it would be very difficult for him to win.”

But Jeff Rea, a former Republican mayor from another Indiana town and current president of the South Bend chamber of commerce, said nobody should count out Mayor Pete. He and Buttigieg have been on opposite sides on a number of projects but have “always found a way to come together for a solution.”

Buttigieg “is a very data-driven guy and also a very good man,” Rea added. “That has helped him win over voters who might not like progressive politics.” No mayor in history has ever run and won his or her party’s nomination for president, nor has anyone under the age of 43. Then again, no businessman had ever done it until Trump came along.
Michael Wear, the faith adviser to Obama, told me he thinks Mayor Pete has a chance.
“Things change,” Wear said. “And, in America, anything can happen.”

Salena Zito is a CNN political analyst, and a staff reporter and columnist for the Washington Examiner. She reaches the Everyman and Everywoman through shoe-leather journalism, traveling from Main Street to the beltway and all places in between. To find out more about Salena and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at



Elections, Media, Politics

Chris Matthews: 2020 Could be Nixon-McGovern Repeat

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews sounded the alarm that the Democratic Party is veering too far left in its pursuit of young and minority voters by selecting the most progressive candidate. He compared the upcoming 2020 presidential election campaign to that of the 1972 presidential election between incumbent President Richard Nixon (R) and Democratic presidential nominee Senator George McGovern (D-SD). Nixon won by a landslide. Per Matthews’ analysis, this had more to do with the Democrats at the time pandering too far left with progressive identity politics, which, in turn, moved their more moderate supporters to the right. “One, almost half the Democratic Party electorate is either moderate or conservative. In other words, to the right of the Progressives…Bottom line: Going into the Democratic primaries is not the same as going to the country.” Read more…

Here’s more from Breitbart…

Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” host Chris Matthews offered his take on the Democratic Party’s drift to the far-left, which he warned could have an impact on the 2020 presidential election.

Matthews reminded voters of the 1972 presidential election between incumbent President Richard Nixon and then-Democratic presidential nominee Sen. George McGovern (D-SD). Nixon won in a landslide, taking 49 states and 60% of the popular vote.

He suggested such a scenario could be possible in 2020 if Democrats nominated a far-left candidate to go up against President Donald Trump in 2020.

“I have been thinking about who is going to take back the White House, who’s going to win the Democratic nomination next spring then go on to defeat Donald Trump in November 2020,” he said.


Big govt, Elections, Politics

Pelosi’s Burning House Helps President Trump

Nancy Pelosi is dealing with a train wreck involving infighting among radical freshmen and the Democratic Old Guard, a media in league with the progressive socialist agenda. If President Trump plays his cards right, it could be smooth sailing back into the White House in 2020 simply by staying the course with his Make America Great Again agenda. Accordingly, Pelosi is attempting to move the Democrats’ playbook away from a one note “impeachment” that will leave them empty-handed when it matters most: November 2020. So far, however, hardliners in her party, such as socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), are bucking marching orders. Read more…

Here’s more from PJ Media…

As soon as it became clear on election night last November that the Democrats were going to retake the House, I mentioned on the PJ Media Live Blog that it might be one of the greatest things that could happen for President Trump’s re-election.

Let’s face it, the Democrats had already been rather unhinged since Trump’s election, and they didn’t even have any ditzy bartenders from the Bronx in the mix yet. Bringing all of that crazy into the leadership forefront was going to make it difficult for even the MSM to ignore.

My thought at the time was that they would do little more than caterwaul about impeachment, which would leave the party without anything positive to run on in 2020 and do double duty by stealing Trump’s base. During the transition — before she’d been re-elected Speaker — Nancy Pelosi was trying to warn her colleagues about being the one-note impeachment party.


Big govt, Elections, Politics

Race, Trump and Local News

A family invited a traveling evangelist to stay in their home. (He was preaching at the family’s church.) As the parents slept, the evangelist allegedly raped their 14-year-old daughter. Five years later, the man has still not faced a jury of his peers. The 14-year-old is now 19. She is in weekly therapy and can get no closure. She must hang on to the memories. She must make sure she remembers because she hopes one day the man she says raped her will finally meet justice.

A woman struggles to remember. She is one in a line of women who dated the wrong man. He allegedly beat her badly as he beat others before her. She must remember the details, and she knows her memory is going foggy as time passes by. The man is facing 20 years in prison, but like the evangelist, he has ensured his case will not go before a jury.

Both of these men and many others have hired David Ralston, the speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives, to be their lawyer. One admitted he paid Ralston $20,000 to just keep delaying his trial. Ralston, as speaker, can get any case of his continued, and no judge can stop him. He has done this repeatedly for years as victims’ memories fade and justice is delayed.

This is a story ripe for national media attention. It is a story of a politician abusing his power. There are multiple female victims waiting for justice. There is even one criminal defendant who admits he paid the speaker to stop his case from proceeding. It is happening in a swing state where Republicans are at risk of losing power.

Contrast that story with one that did go national. A newspaper publisher in Alabama who had once won several journalism awards has called for the return of the KKK. National news outlets blasted the publisher, deservedly so. But is it really that big of a story?

Consider the Jussie Smollett story. Having received a death threat in the mail, Smollett was beaten up by Trump supporters on a street in Chicago. The media covered this story for days. ABC News gave a sympathetic hearing to Smollett, letting him amplify what happened and letting him blame Trump supporters. Except we now know it didn’t happen that way. Smollett is now the leading suspect in his own hate crime. The media that rushed to make this a national story fled the story as soon as it stopped working against President Trump and his supporters.

In Virginia, the governor was alleged to have worn blackface or a KKK costume, and the media pounced. The attorney general called for the governor’s ouster. Then the lieutenant governor saw multiple women accuse him of sexual assault. Then the attorney general admitted he, too, had worn blackface. Once everyone realized the next in line for the governor’s chair was a Republican, the story faded away.

Local and state political stories deserve national coverage at times. Americans are more and more dependent on national outlets to cover local stories. But national outlets tend to be more focused on narratives than facts. National reporters have a greater propensity to run in a herd while living in a bubble.

The speaker of the Georgia House is a Republican, but he retains his power with the help of Democrats in the state House. In fact, it is Republicans calling for Ralston to resign. The Democrats are perfectly happy keeping him because the alternative would be more conservative. But the Democrats will undoubtedly use the issue in 2020 to pick off Republican seats in the state Legislature. Then it will become a national story.

In fact, it seems the best way to turn a local story into a national story is to find a way to make the president or his supporters look bad. The fallback is to make the story about racial animosity. That may help a political narrative national reporters love, but it does a real disservice to news consumers and victims of real exploitation and abuse.

To find out more about Erick Erickson and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at



Big govt, Elections, Politics

Warren Announces Run for President against “Rigged” System

Just four weeks after launching her presidential “exploratory committee,” Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) made her bid official. She used the occasion to slam the “system” as “rigged by the wealthy and the well connected.” She went on to blast “the man in the White House” as “the latest and most extreme symptom of what’s gone wrong in America.” Aside from Trump as the symbol of what’s wrong in American politics, she made sure to call out the economic struggle of “families of color,” slam “the 1%,” and discuss the “Middle Class Squeeze.” Read more…

Here’s more from The Daily Wire…

On Saturday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) officially announced that she is running for president in 2020. Warren’s declaration comes more than four weeks after the formation of her presidential “exploratory committee.”

During her speech in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Warren stated that the “system” has been “rigged by the wealthy and the well-connected,” and that “the man in the White House is not the cause of what is broken,” but “the latest and most extreme symptom of what’s gone wrong in America.”

Here are seven key quotes from Warren’s speech, which focused heavily on wealth inequality:


So, once he’s gone, we can’t pretend that none of this ever happened. It won’t be enough to just undo the terrible acts of this administration. We can’t afford just to tinker around the edges — a tax credit here, a regulation there — our fight is for big, structural change.


Big govt, Elections, Politics

Democrats’ Leftward March

President Donald Trump should send liberals a big fat thank-you note.
For each day Americans see how truly radical the Democratic Party has become is a win for the president, who, by contrast, looks like a full-blown moderate.

Take Democrats’ extreme swing to the left on women’s reproductive issues. What used to be a party that said abortion should be safe, legal and rare is now pushing hard in Virginia, Rhode Island and beyond for legalized late-term abortion on demand — meaning a woman could get an abortion at any time during a pregnancy, up until the baby’s birth. Never mind the fact that science has proved that at 20 weeks, a fetus can feel pain and that many babies can live outside the womb after gestating for just six months.

That’s irrelevant to such abortion radicals as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who just inked legislation — proposed by Democrats — allowing such a barbaric practice to take place. Make no mistake; late-term abortion and partial-birth abortion are not mainstream practices outside the U.S. by any means. In fact, only six other countries allow the grisly practice — North Korea is one — as billions of compassionate humans worldwide consider the termination of a 9-month-old baby in utero or born alive to be infanticide.

Call it what you will, but a growing number of prominent Democrats, in lockstep with Planned Parenthood, support it.
Then there’s presidential hopeful Kamala Harris. At a televised town hall meeting this week, the Democratic senator from California called for “Medicare for all,” which means that if she were to be elected president, 177 million Americans on private health insurance would lose their plans. If that were not radical enough — wiping out an entire health care industry and abolishing consumer choice — “Medicare for all” would cost taxpayers an estimated $32.6 trillion over 10 years.

But that’s not the only cost far-left liberals want to raise. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, another Democratic presidential hopeful, is calling for an incremental wealth tax on the rich — catapulting America toward socialism — despite the fact that a recent Forbes analysis found that her proposal would cost billionaires an estimated $85 billion per year. That’s money that many billionaires currently use for seeding startup enterprises, for supporting higher education with significant private grants and for other worthwhile charitable and philanthropic endeavors benefiting humanity — all of which would contract, if not collapse, if the taxman came knocking.
Then there’s Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described democratic socialist, who also wants to fleece the rich. She wants a 70 percent marginal tax rate for the highest income tax bracket, a policy undoubtedly embraced by Venezuela’s illegitimate dictator, Nicolas Maduro, who’s led his high-tax nation to economic collapse, causing millions of poverty-stricken citizens to flee the country.

But that’s not all. Scores of liberal lawmakers are calling for the abolishment of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. ICE’s members protect America by apprehending sex traffickers, violent criminals and drug dealers and prohibiting them from entering the country. Far-left liberals, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, continue to support open borders and refuse to build the barrier wall Trump is asking for to secure the porous southern border.

As the race for 2020 heats up, voters are beginning to see the sharp contrast between America’s two major political parties. Who knew Democrats could make Donald Trump, an unconventional president, appear mainstream?
Congrats, Democrats. You’ve already succeeded.

Adriana Cohen is a syndicated columnist with the Boston Herald. Follow her on Twitter @AdrianaCohen16. To find out more about Adriana Cohen and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at



Big govt, Elections, Media, Politics

Vermont Newspaper on Bernie 2020: “We Beg Him Not To”

“Bernie Sanders should not run for president. In fact, we beg him not to,” quoth an editorial in the Barre Montpelier Times Argus. Primary concerns aired against 2016 socialist presidential candidate and current U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) were his penchant for appearing more on the mainstream media than local news outlets and the likelihood that he will simply divide the Democrats’ ticket just like last time. “We fear a Sanders run risks dividing the well-fractured Democratic Party, and could lead to another split in the 2020 presidential vote,” the editorial continued. With that sort of anti-endorsement, we’re wondering if we should jump on the Bernie train. That said, the greatest threat to the Democrats may be that so many candidates will be vying for Bernie’s socialist base.

Here’s more from Washington Examiner…

A Vermont newspaper on Monday begged Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., not to run for president in 2020.

“Bernie Sanders should not run for president. In fact, we beg him not to,” said the editorial published by the Barre Montpelier Times Argus.

“That is an unfavorable opinion, especially among most Vermonters and progressives who support the platform that has come to define him,” the paper added. “But at this point, there are more things about another Sanders run at the White House that concern us than excite us.”

The paper said another Sanders run would divide the Democratic Party, as his run did against Hillary Clinton.

“We fear a Sanders run risks dividing the well-fractured Democratic Party, and could lead to another split in the 2020 presidential vote,” it said.


Big govt, Elections, Politics

Romney Has the Wrong Idea

Mitt Romney is the definition of bitter. Still reeling that Donald Trump is president and not him — after several failed attempts at the Oval Office — Utah’s freshman senator didn’t even wait to get sworn in to the new 116th U.S. Congress this week before taking a holier-than-thou swipe at his party’s standard-bearer.

In a self-righteous op-ed published in the left-leaning Washington Post — the same publication that once skewered him for strapping a carrier containing his Irish setter to the roof of the family car for a 12-hour road trip — Romney lectured the leader of the Free World about integrity.

In fact, the same Democrats and media who widely mocked and criticized the former Bain Capital executive when he ran against Barack Obama in 2012 — calling him an animal abuser and a vulture capitalist, as well as accusing him of being anti-immigrant and anti-women, with his clumsy “binders full of women” gaffe — are now lavishing praise on the mega-wealthy Mormon for insulting the president. Go figure.

In his head-scratching hit piece, Utah’s junior U.S. senator said Trump’s behavior is “evidence that the president has not risen to the mantle of the office” while itemizing a litany of destructive actions he considers unbecoming of an occupant of the Oval Office. What President Trump’s millions of supporters know is that in some respects, Mitt Romney is right; the president has destroyed some things the past two years in office.

For example, the Islamic State’s deadly caliphate, which, under former President Obama, expanded dramatically not only in Iraq and Syria but also globally, executing and inspiring a series of horrific attacks in France, Belgium, Australia, Africa and beyond — including the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, the worst terror attack against the gay community in U.S. history. Omar Mateen, who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State prior to the rampage, slaughtered 49 Americans and injured dozens more who were out enjoying life on a summer night in July 2016.

Before that, we saw the attack at the Boston Marathon, the massacre in San Bernardino and other attacks by Islamic radicals on our soil. Then the current commander in chief led the U.S. military in destroying 95 percent of the Islamic State’s caliphate. Today Islamic State militants occupy less than 3 percent of Iraq and 5 percent of Syria. So Trump’s leadership has liberated approximately 8 million Muslims who were controlled and oppressed by the savage regime.
Trump has also destroyed the high unemployment rate for all Americans, including women and minorities. Under Obama, the unemployment rate reached 10 percent. Today it’s less than 4 percent. The president has also destroyed job-crushing regulations, bad trade agreements and the disastrous Iranian nuclear deal, which gave the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism $150 billion in exchange for a false sense of security when it came to curtailing its clandestine nuclear weapons proliferation.

The U.S. economy has also thrived under Trump’s leadership, with the creation of over 4 million jobs providing hope and opportunity to countless Americans, many of whom struggled to make ends meet during past administrations. What Romney fails to realize is that if a few bad tweets or unseemly sound bites from the president are the price we must pay for all of the above — plus historic prison reform, rebuilding the military and other policies benefiting our nation — the overwhelming majority of Republicans would say it’s worth it. In fact, Trump’s overall approval rating is in line with those of past presidents who were re-elected, including Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and Obama at similar points in their presidencies.

All the more reason politicians should be building bridges to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., not destroying them.
Adriana Cohen is a syndicated columnist with the Boston Herald. Follow her on Twitter @AdrianaCohen16. To find out more about Adriana Cohen and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at



Big govt, Elections, Politics

Poll: Beto Leads in Dem White House Hunt

In the latest poll of its hard-left members, failed U.S. Senate candidate Robert O’Rourke is coming out ahead of former Obama Vice President Joe Biden for White House favorites. In his support for gun regulation and increased federal largesse, O’Rourke clocked in at 15.6 percent ahead of Biden’s 14.9 percent and self-described socialist Bernie Sanders’ 13.1 percent, but it’s an eternity until actual votes are cast, and at least 29 percent of those polled indicated they’re undecided. Read more…

Here’s more from The Daily Wire…

On Tuesday, NBC News reported that a straw poll of members – grassroots far-Leftists – favored failed Texas Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke over Joe Biden. Some 29 percent of respondents said they didn’t know who they wanted or wanted candidates not listed, but Rourke seized a narrow lead with 15.6 percent of respondents, followed by former Vice President Joe Biden at 14.9 percent and Senator Bernie Sanders at 13.1 percent.

That’s certainly a troubling sign for Sanders, who wants to recapitulate his 2016 run by recapturing the hearts of the so-called Bernie Bros. But it now looks like the Bernie Bros may have been wooed by the charismatic Texas representative, and may be turning away from the crotchety old Vermont socialist. What’s more, O’Rourke has crossover power with the two other segments of the Democratic base: the intersectional coalition that Barack Obama captured so easily in 2008, and the mainstream base that Sanders could never consolidate against Hillary Clinton.


Big govt, Elections, Politics

NYT Admits Warren’s DNA Test Was a Misstep

It’s not often that mainstream media admits when liberal Democrats have gone off the rails. So when they do, it’s a pretty big deal. To wit, the New York Times lamented this week that “she has yet to allay criticism from grass-roots progressive groups, liberal political operatives and other potential 2020 allies who complain that she put too much emphasis on the controversial field of racial science – and, in doing so, played into Mr. Trump’s hands.” Read more…

Here’s more from Breitbart…

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-MA) DNA test was such a fiasco, her advisers and even the far-left New York Times are worried this “lingering cloud over [her] likely presidential campaign has only darkened.”

“More worrisome to supporters of Ms. Warren’s presidential ambitions,” the Times writes, is that “she has yet to allay criticism from grass-roots progressive groups, liberal political operatives and other potential 2020 allies who complain that she put too much emphasis on the controversial field of racial science — and, in doing so, played into Mr. Trump’s hands.”

“Advisers close to Ms. Warren say she has privately expressed concern that she may have damaged her relationships to Native American groups and her own standing with progressive activists, particularly those who are racial minorities.”