Donald Trump follows Phyllis Schlafly’s political advice?

Phyllis Schlafly, the celebrated anti-feminist and all-around right-wing kook who died a few weeks ago at the age of 92, has left us a sizable legacy of dubious political nostrums. One of the more recent examples of questionable advice from Schlafly seems to have been heeded by Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. In the wake of GOP defeats in the presidential elections of 2008 and 2012, leaders of the Republican National Committee suggested that the party should try harder to attract non-white voters. White voter turnout rates had...

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Will there be violence if Trump loses?

  I’ve been following presidential elections fairly closely for 56 years now, but I’ve never before had cause to worry about outbreaks of violence when the votes are all counted. Donald Trump and some of his followers have changed all that. Much of Trump’s campaign oratory has included allusions to violence. He’s encouraged people at his rallies to physically attack dissenters in their midst. He’s promised to cover the legal expenses incurred by people who follow this advice. He’s spoken at least twice...

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Trump’s graceless retreat from Birtherism only hurts him

  The mainstream media got played by Donald Trump this morning — not for the first time, but perhaps once too often and far too cynically. The Donald might come to regret it. Trump has long been the principal purveyor of the conspiracy theory that Barack Obama was not born in the United States and therefore is not qualified to be president. The claim was thoroughly debunked years ago, but Trump has never formally disowned it — until today. However, the manner in which he did so was begrudging, dishonest, graceless and not...

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TV retrospectives on Sept. 11 omitted one big thing

  Yesterday was the 15th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and several television networks observed the occasion with retrospective documentaries about those terrible events. I watched at least six hours of that stuff and noticed that one significant factor was missing: There was no mention of something Donald Trump claims to have seen. As Trump’s presidential campaign began to hit stride last fall, he declared more than once that he remembered seeing television coverage of “thousands and...

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Trump likely will find some excuse to skip the debates

  One month from tomorrow, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are scheduled to begin a set of three campaign dates over the course of just 13 days — but I have my doubts that it will ever happen. I hope I’m wrong about this, but I expect that Trump will come up with some lame rationale for skipping the debates. His campaign brain-trust (if that’s the word for it) probably will persuade him that there’s more to lose in laying bare his lack of knowledge of the issues than in finding even a contrived  excuse for...

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