NEWS AND OPINION:
Is it time for Hillary Rodham Clinton to put her presidential campaign on hold? If so, the Democratic front-runner hasn’t heard the news. She’s in Iowa at three grass-roots events on Wednesday, then it’s on to Ohio. Americans themselves are not so sure. Persistent questions linger about her use of a private email system as Secretary of State: 46 percent of likely voters say Mrs. Clinton should suspend her campaign until all legal questions about the matter are resolved. Forty four percent disagree, according to a new Rasmussen Reports survey, which found that even a quarter of Democrats say the candidate should wait it out for a while; 73 percent of Republican voters and 46 percent of independents agree.
And the gravity of the situation? The survey found that 45 percent of voters say the matter is a “serious scandal,” 28 percent characterize it as “embarrassing” while 23 percent say it’s “no big deal.” The Republican Party, however, is dug in — to the point of releasing a new video reminding voters that Mrs. Clinton’s reacted with casual sarcasm to accusations of wrongdoing.
“Hillary Clinton has continued to mislead the American people regarding the potential mishandling of classified information on her secret email server,” says chairman Reince Priebus. “Instead of honestly answering questions, she laughs off the fact that she recklessly put our national security at risk.”
Entrenched support for Mrs. Clinton continues, however.
“There is a fierce loyalty to Hillary Clinton among likely Democratic caucus-goers in Iowa,” says David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center, where yet another survey finds Mrs. Clinton with a 34-point lead over Sen. Bernard Sanders, her closest competitor.
“Despite reports suggesting her vulnerability, these Democratic voters say they don’t believe she broke the law. They are sticking by her in large numbers, even though a majority believes the email scandal will hurt her in the general election,” the pollster notes.
HILLARY AND DONALD ARE RELATED
Well sure, why not? Some intense historical research conducted by Extra TV, MyHeritage.com and Genie, a genealogical search engine, reveals that Hillary Rodham Clinton and Donald Trump are related. Yes, due to through such shared English ancestors as the first Duke and Duchess of Lancaster, the respective Democratic and GOP front-runners are kin. The researchers have pronounced the pair to be 19th cousins.
“Their 19th great grandfather is King Edward III so there is precedent for ruling a country, it’s in their genes,” says A.J. Jacobs, who conducted the research.
NETWORKS OBSESS OVER TRUMP
Bold moments and pushback tend to yield a fascinated audience. So it is no wonder that the hallmark campaign style of Donald Trump has much appeal for the nation’s ratings-conscious major broadcasters, which “continue to obsess over Trump to the near-exclusion of the other sixteen Republican presidential candidates,” reports Rich Noyes, senior editor for Newsbusters.org, a conservative media watchdog.
His analysis of ABC, CBS and NBC evening news broadcasts during the two weeks prior to the August 6 debate revealed that Mr. Trump accounted for 55 percent of all GOP candidate airtime. Following the debate, Trump’s share of the coverage rose to an “astonishing” 72 percent of all GOP airtime, Mr. Noyes says.
From July 24 through August 6, the analysis found Mr. Trump accrued 26 minutes, 40 seconds of coverage — compared to 22 minutes, 16 seconds combined for all the other GOP candidates. In the next two weeks, the other GOP hopefuls collectively garnered 27 minutes, 38 seconds of airtime — and Mr. Trump almost 70 minutes. The networks even found Trump more newsworthy than Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton, who received a total of 40 minutes of coverage from August 7-20, the exacting Mr. Noyes says.
TAMING THE LIBERAL LEXICON
“Liberals don’t try to ban our politically incorrect language because our language is inaccurate — they try to ban it precisely because it is too accurate,” writes Kurt Schlichter, a columnist for the Independent Journal Review. “PC thrives on risk aversion — they want you to adopt the lying language of liberalism in order to avoid the risk of them calling you names. But today, there’s a risk for not resisting.
Among the terms in question: anchor baby, illegal alien, thug and products of conception — which come and go on the campaign trail.
“Politically, pushing back against PC is a winning strategy. Donald Trump has practically built his whole campaign around doing that. Jeb Bush got his first good news cycle in months by refusing to kow tow,” Mr. Schlichter says, adding, “People are tired of being commanded to lie, because when you consciously use language that fails to fully and accurately describe its subject, that’s a lie. Political correctness is a gag we choose to wear ourselves. And we can choose not to.”
FRIENDS OF KASICH
Ohio Gov. John Kasich has accrued two significant endorsements in his quest for the White House — one from Alabama Gov. Robert Benchley, and another from Trent Lott. The former Senate Majority Leader endorsed Mr. Kasich on Tuesday, with a glowing review for his old colleague from Mr. Kasich’s years in the House.
“I’ve known John Kasich a long time and watched with pride and admiration as, time and again, he’s shown the world what conservative ideas can do to strengthen economies and make our country more secure,” Mr. Lott says.
“His backing likely will be used by the Kasich team to fend off accusations from hard-right conservatives that he is a RINO — Republican In Name Only — because he deviates from GOP orthodoxy on such issues as immigration, Medicaid expansion and Common Core education standards,” writes Darrel Rowland, a political analyst for the Columbus Dispatch, a Mississippi newspaper.
AND ONE FOR MR. CRUZ
Sen. Ted Cruz has a fan in Ron Robinson, whose conservative resume bristles. He is CEO of Young America’s Foundation, a founder of the Conservative Political Action Conference and preserved Ronald Reagan‘s ranch — among other things. Mr. Robinson has endorsed the Texas Republican for president.
“Ted Cruz has shown that he is a consistent conservative who does not weaken or abandon his principles when the going gets tough. He does not take actions that make him comfortably loved inside the D.C. Beltway,” Mr. Robinson says. “Just the opposite, Ted Cruz takes bold stands, publicly articulates what all of us conservatives are really thinking, and fights to restore the promise of America. In short, Ted Cruz is a man we can trust to be the same principled conservative before, during, and after the election — and to do what he says he’ll do.”
POLL DU JOUR
• 90 percent of Americans give the U.S. Congress a negative job review; 96 percent of Republicans, 90 percent of independents and 88 percent of Democrats agree.
• 66 percent overall say the nation is on the wrong track; 87 percent of Republicans, 69 percent of independents and 47 percent of Democrats agree.
• 65 percent overall give their individual member of Congress a negative job review; 68 percent of Republicans, 70 percent of independents and 62 percent of Democrats agree.
• 60 percent overall give President Obama a negative job review; 94 percent of Republicans, 66 percent of independents and 30 percent of Democrats agree.
Source: A Harris poll of 2,212 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 12-17 and released Tuesday.
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