**UPDATE 7:30pm Wednesday**
Trump Rally in Omaha on Friday, May6th:
Werner Enterprises Hangar (next to Eppley Airfield)
3619 Doolittle Plaza
Omaha, NE 68110
Doors Open at 1:00 PM
If you’re on the way to Lincoln for the Ted Cruz event at Embassy Suites, you can turn around now and hit an IHOP. With Donald Trump’s victory in Indiana last night, the hope of Nebraska’s influence — well of EVERYONE’s influence at an open convention — is shot.
But Trump said last night during his victory speech that they were still “going to Nebraska”, so the rumored Friday rally in Omaha could still be on. )And the TV stations want to know if he’ll still be spending that $200K!)
Leavenworth St. will keep you updated.
But Nebraska still has a great deal invested in not supporting Donald Trump.
While Governor Pete Ricketts said he would support the eventual nominee, his kazillionairre Dad has been bankrolling the #NeverTrump campaign, still headed and Tweeted out by Katie Packer. The Indiana results haven’t slowed her down.
So where do Sasse, Joe Ricketts, and the whole crew at the National Review go for the next 6 to 54 months? Behind a continuing “#NeverTrump campaign. And as long as others like Cruz and Marco Rubio jump on the Trump bandwagon, Ben Sasse will be their leader.
One fascinating aspect that is all over the Twitter is those who say, “Well, I’m DONE with the Republican Party now!”
Which confuses me. I get that the President is generally considered the leader of the Republican party. But since when has that person dictated what “the party” stands for?
Sure your Chuck Hagels will occasionally leave the party. But the usual course is to go Pat Buchanan and try to move the party back to the direction you want. So those who suggest that Sasse or any of the others need to leave the party or create the Conservative Party are jumping to an unnecessary conclusion. If your ship gets captured by pirates, you don’t just give up the ship. You try to re-capture it.
Some say the Republican Party has needed to be usurped for a while now — that the influence of social conservatives has meant that they will continue to lose elections. They believe Trump’s populist positions will better suit the party. And that battle will continue. And there’s nothing wrong with that. You should have to argue your ideas
While those in the #NeverTrump camp are feeling pretty good about their position right now, they could end up in a quandary.
There is a bit of a consensus that Trump loses badly in the General Election — and that will sit fine with the #NeverTrump camp. They can argue that Trump never had a chance, and that even WITH their support, he couldn’t have won. It works for them and they can ride that as long as they need to.
On the other hand, there is smaller camp which thinks that Trump can not only beat Hillary, but that he will eventually beat her badly (Scott Adams has been saying this for over 9 months now, and the Morning Joe crew may be there).
If that happens, the #NeverTrumps are maybe even better positioned as the conservative wing of the party. A President Trump would have to recognize, work with them, etc. etc. Really not a bad spot to be in there.
But the problem comes if the race is close.
If it is neck and neck, the #NeverTrumpers will not be seen as “principled”. They will be seen as de facto Hillary supporters. And if she wins a tight race, they will be blamed and ridiculed for some time. Sure they can try to claim that “he had it coming” or “only had himself to blame”. But if it is a CLOSE race, it gets harder to say, “I didn’t support Hillary, I was only not supporting Trump.”
Which one of those scenarios is the most likely?
That’s the million dollar question. (Or qua-zillion dollar, if you’re Joe Ricketts.)
Bacon and Chips
With the Trump win, and sudden deflation of the Nebraska Presidential primary, how will that affect voter turnout, especially in Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District?
Douglas County Election Commissioner Brian Kruse had been predicting 23%. After a conversation, he is sticking to his guns on that number. He said he had been averaging in a Trump win and doesn’t feel the need to lower that prediction after the Indiana results.
But let us assume that there is some affect.
Does it keep all lower-interest GOP voters at home?
Do the Trump voters show up to spike the ball in Nebraska, especially if Trump comes to Omaha for a rally?
Do they forget, or not bother to vote, still hung-over (as it were) from the Indiana win?
Do Cruz and Kasich and the rest of the #NeverTrump voters show up to make a point?
Or do the party-stalwart voters show that they will control the results?
Or does this mish-mash just come back to the predicted 23%?
And what does this do for Don Bacon and Chip Maxwell?
No full opinion here yet. Feel free to toss yours in.
Salmon Mousse and Sweater
Speaking of brash (aren’t we always), Democrat Rep. Brad Ashford sent out this Tweet yesterday:
— Brad Ashford (@RepBradAshford) May 3, 2016
Isn’t that cute?
Because, hopefully you remember THIS Brad Ashford from just a few months ago:
That would be FIRST CLASS BRAD lounging in his seat (before the rest of you plebeians get to board). Let us know how the Surf n’ Turf and extra legroom is.
(And don’t even TRY to use Brad’s 1st Class bathroom!)
Leavenworth Street Journal
So a reporter for the Wall Street Journal called in last week asking about all things Cruz and Trump and Nebraska and I gave him my thoughts. But so much of it is now moot after the Trump win in Indiana, that it is almost surprising that they still ran it.
But I was quoted, along with Bill Kintner, Beau McCoy, Jim Vokal, John Murante and others.
Here is the link. It was out from behind the WSJ’s pay wall for a while last night, but now appears to be pay-only. Sometimes those change, so be sure to try back later in the day or week.
But just so you don’t miss it, here is my quote…
One complication for Mr. Trump’s detractors—as it has been from the beginning of the primary—is Mr. Cruz could end up splitting votes with Ohio Gov. John Kasich. “There is a real possibility that the ‘Never Trump’ movement will split between Kasich and Cruz, which could give the state to Trump,” said Jerry Kratochvil, who runs the Leavenworth Street political blog.
I stand by my guns!
Only suckers don’t follow @DannyMoe
From the Twitters last night and this morning…
Only mystery at this point is who #Kasich names as his veep tomorrow.
— dannymoe (@danmoser1961) May 4, 2016
Trump picks Gingrich as VP. Putting money on it.
— T. Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) May 4, 2016
— Katie Packer (@katiepack) May 4, 2016
In the Know
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