As a skilled crowd reader, Trump knows he’s playing with fire

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Here’s Rudy Giuliani, appearing on “Good Morning America” to explain the perfectly innocent remarks by Donald Trump about Hillary Clinton and the Second Amendment:

“You know how speeches go. He was talking about how they [gun rights advocates] have the power to keep her out of office, that’s what he was talking about. With a crowd like that, if that’s what they thought he’d meant, they’d have gone wild.”

Two points:

First, Giuliani’s argument is complete tripe.

For weeks now, Trump has been using the Supreme Court as a cudgel with which to force reluctant conservative voters into his camp, and he was doing so again Tuesday. He warned the crowd that once the election is over and then-President Hillary Clinton “starts picking judges, nothing you can do, folks.”

Nothing, “although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know.” The whole line of thought was about what can happen after the election, after the votes have been counted, not before.

However, I want to focus more on the second part of Giuliani’s argument, the part where he tells us that “With a crowd like that, if that’s what they thought he’d meant, they’d have gone wild.”

By “wild,” Giuliani doesn’t mean that the crowd would have been horrified or outraged or angry with Trump at the suggestion that somebody should shoot Clinton as a “Second Amendment solution.” By “wild,” he means that the crowd would have erupted in howls of support. And well, that says a lot about where we are today.

It certainly says a lot about the crowd, or at least how Giuliani perceives the crowd. And he ought to know, because he had introduced Trump that day. In fact, as Giuliani stood at the podium about to speak, the crowd had broken out into spontaneous chants of “Lock her up! Lock her up!”

Aware of the criticism that such chants have drawn — after all, we don’t lock up political opponents in this country — Giuliani quickly hushed them. But what happened next was quite instructive.

Just a few minutes later, after outlining some alleged impropriety by Clinton,  Giuliani yelled into the microphone that “In my old days as a prosecutor, you would go to jail for that!” Then he stood back and waited while they took the bait:

“Lock her up! Lock her up!”

So he knows. He knows just how close to the edge that he and Trump and others are pushing things. He fully understands how flammable the situation has become. And as a skilled crowd reader, Trump knows it too. He wanted to give that crowd just a little nudge, a little jolt of excitement to tell them that he’s on their side, that he thinks as they do even if he can’t quite say it.

And sometimes a little nudge can be dangerous.

Reader Comments 0

1024 comments
Mick11
Mick11

Rudy is a despicable charlatan a-hole...zero point zero credibility, perfect fit with trump...

Paul42
Paul42

@Mick11

There's a pattern to what happens with these folks when they seek the Dark Side -

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

W had a private component which would have saved social security.  He did?  Didn't Wall Street crash under Bush?  Republicans goal is to leave us middle Americans with absolutely nothing.

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

Trump has sent out a letter to people who signed up on his website - they are looking for input on their "Official Campaign Trump vs Hillary approval poll" - ROFL. How down in the dumps is Donald when he needs to have his own supporters tell him they'll vote for him. 

The Trump campaign sent the Q&A out on Thursday morning. It appears to have been sent to people who signed up to receive Trump emails.

As an identified Trump supporter from your zip code, your input is missing from our Official Campaign Trump vs. Hillary approval poll,” the email says. A link sends the reader to the poll, which consists of two questions.

“Will you vote for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton this November?” and: “Which issue is most important to you?”

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

I forgot to mention - the good folks at longroom.com are going to use the results in their "unskewed polls".

Paul42
Paul42

@PaulinNH

Looks like this may be the start of the General Election Pivot.

"Tell us the issue that matters most so we can be sure to tell you what you want to hear."

"oh yeah...  are you really, really planning on voting for us?  ('yes' means 'we haven't lost all credibility yet and 'no' means... it means.... aw, just ignore them.")

Unbelievable -

Paul42
Paul42

Does it seem to anyone else that our cons appear to be running out of steam?  That there's no energy left?  No assurance that they  think they have even a fighting chance?

Well, then, it's up to them what comes next.  I rather think they've gone way past the point that the old models of 'conservatism' have any meaning or relevance to what we see today.  They can label it 'conservatism' or whatever they want - first they have to figure out just what it is they believe.

As we've seen with Trump, that can change on a dime.

Time to sort things out, conservatives.  Good luck.

honested
honested

@Paul42 

I'm not a con but all conserrrrrrrrrvatism means to me (based on the evidence) is 35 years of absolute failure in economic and defense policy.

If they had kept what worked and abandoned what failed, they may have something to run on.

But clinging tightly to the failures with magic thinking that someday it will work just exposes the fraud.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@Paul42 I know one that has been reduced to one line jokes and insults that goes by the name of Philo.

Paul42
Paul42

@StraightNoChaser

Everybody has to have a reason to get out of bed in the morning.  It works for him.

DaltonbywayofBickley
DaltonbywayofBickley

@honested @Paul42 I became a "RINO" when all the social conservative issues took precedence, as did labeling half the country as "takers." Plus, I've never believed that cutting taxes, while simultaneously wasting billions more dollars on every new defense toy that comes along would somehow increase revenue to reduce debt. That's just magical thinking.

Paul42
Paul42

@JamVet

There's something to be said about a guy who knows he's out of his league who does everything he can to lose this far out and make sure someone else gets the blame. 

I'm not sure what it is, but there's something to be said - 

Up In Cleveland
Up In Cleveland

I can't believe the WAPO keeps paying George Will. 


"Nationally, neither party is eager to talk about the rickety structure of the entitlement state, although the Democratic platform promises to make matters worse. Although scheduled Social Security benefits vastly exceed the value of worker and employer contributions plus interest, the platform, a case study in reactionary liberalism, opposes even raising the retirement age."

Easy for Will to talk about raising the retirement age when the closest he's come to physical labor was when it was the maids day off and he had to swat a fly himself.  Of course he doesn't mention the Republicans absolute refusal to raise the exemption level or anything else to raise the amount of revenue coming into the system.  Just let the plumbers, drywall hangers etc. keep working a few more years. What's the big deal.

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

It had a private component.

Dems hate privatization of anything.

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

"What was it? "

My point is whatever cons come up with, Dems will distort any proposal and demagogue it 'til it dies.

honested
honested

@Philo_Farnsworth 

Should they ever come up with a 'plan' that demonstrates a substantial chance of success while still providing what Social Security is supposed to provide (you know, secure living conditions for the elderly in society, NOT a profit center for the parasites in the insurance and investment communities) then maybe it would be worth looking into.......

Let me know if they ever craft such a plan.

foo2u
foo2u

If only congress would pay back all the money they stolle from the SS fund...

honested
honested

@foo2u 

We're about as likely to see the General Assembly put back what they have stolen from the State Education Budget.

honested
honested

@Up In Cleveland 

Much like peggy noonan and everyone who pays her. 

Aside from the nitwits who write for the 'federalist' I don't know of anyone who has been so serially WRONG yet speaks with an air of unassailable accuracy.

Maybe she doesn't get paid very much.

JamVet
JamVet

"And if at the end of 90 days, I've fallen short ... it's OK. I go back to a very good way of life."

Trump has previously questioned the integrity of the electoral system, which had some outsiders wondering if he was preparing an explanation for a potential loss.

"I'm afraid the election's going to be rigged, I have to be honest," Trump recently told an Ohio crowd.

Paul42
Paul42

@JamVet

Nothing like getting the excuses ready before the project is completed, eh?

It's even better when your investors immediately accept them!

anguslee
anguslee

I heard someone in the Drump camp told him he was insulting right wingy thingies by suggesting that gun owners are dog dumpling animals that would happily take their weapons out into the street on kill missions instead of the normal screaming at the sun. And I heard he told that lowly staff licker to shaddup, he didn't want to hear about anything he said. And now that I write that I heard that, or think I did, same thing, it must be true because there it is on the internet in black and white. I also heard that somebody said Drump was going to make Mexico pay for a wall he will build with those itty bitty hands. Than another staffer said, a President can't just do that. And he said, if Hillary can eliminate the second amendment of the Constitution by herself, I can make the wall appear. Staff dog fired. Another staffer wanted to suggest he learn something, anything about government, but went on tv instead and said reallyreally stupid things. It's all veryveryvery true because it's a disaster.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

We all know that there is nothing to hack at the RNC because their servers are quite due to reduction in staff.  Everyone is quitting because of Donald Trump.  

St Simons he-ne-ha
St Simons he-ne-ha

@StraightNoChaser they did hack the RNC.

all they found were some chain emails with fried chicken, watermelons, and a bone thru the nose.

Nothing we didn't already know about them

Donnie_Pinko
Donnie_Pinko

So when do we get the actual evidence for all this Russian hacking of DNC servers?

Or are we just supposed to take these law enforcement / intelligence agencies and their media mouthpieces at the New York Times at their word?

You know, because PUTIN!!!

OldEngineer
OldEngineer

Call the CIA - I'm sure they'll give you a full briefing.

Up In Cleveland
Up In Cleveland

@Donnie_Pinko "American Lilly King, just 19 years old, started the uprising by literally wagging a finger at Yulia Efimova, one of 271 Russians whom the International Olympic Committee allowed to compete despite the recent exposure of Russia’s East German-style doping program, and despite Efimova’s own past record of violations. 

 Vladi­mir Putin’s press agency, Tass, produced an interview with Efimova in which she accused fellow swimmers of playing “politics.” “I always thought the Cold War was long in the past,” she reportedly said, echoing Kremlin talking points with remarkable fidelity. “Why start it again, by using sport?”

Poor Putin, unfairly bashed right and left. It's just not fair, I tells ya.

rimsky
rimsky

The Russian are hacking the DNC left and right.

How come the Russians are not hacking the Republicans.  

Are the Republicans colluding with the Russians to stay in power?

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

Repubs actually have IT security in place.

Unlike Hillary and the Dems, they take it seriously.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@Philo_Farnsworth One line stand up comedy, Trump is hiring in Vegas.  Oh that's right he's no longer there he filed bankruptcy and the Taj Mahal is closing.  Clown show.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@Philo_Farnsworth Wiki Leaks recently told Anderson Cooper that the RNC and DNC severs have been like Swiss cheese so your statement is not true.  I watched him say it.

JamVet
JamVet

@Philo_Farnsworth

With that degenerate on the stage - and the pedophile sitting behind him - they better have a ton of security!

OldEngineer
OldEngineer

Probably not colluding (that would take coordinated organizational skills they do not possess) but being manipulated, yes.