An 8%  Democratic loss in Blood Red Kansas?   A near miss in Georgia’s Ruby Red 6th District?  Utah’s Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) not running for re-election?   Wow!  What to make of all this turmoil?  And while media attention is focused on national races, here in the Washington region, a local election has also made the local Breaking News Headlines.  Prince William Country, Virginia, is one of those bell weather districts that no statewide Virginia politician has won without also taking Prince William Country since 2001.  Democrats won the county in Presidential elections but elections for local officials have steadfastly remained in Republican hands.  But in a special election to fill out the Country Clerk’s Office term of Republican Michele McQuigg who died recently, the Democrat, Jackie Smith, won by a margin of eight points.   The reason?  The Trump Effect.  Or let’s better characterize it as the Anti-Trump Effect.  This is good news.  So does anyone know what’s happening in other reliably Red Districts in local elections around the country?

The evidence of the Trump Effect is rolling in these days as liberal, progressive and Democratic resistance continues.  Bill O’Reilly kicked to the curb at Fox News?  The Trump Effect.  The man earned $20 million a year and was Fox’s highest earner for the network from advertising dollars – over $100 million a year in ad revenues.   But in the age of Trump, he’s gone.   The anti-Trump resistance, strengthened through social media, had cost Fox a slew of advertisers who withdrew their products from the program.  Same with Breitbart.  Steve Bannon’s right wing purveyor of fake news and Obama slurs and accusations (Deep State, Trump wiretapping) has been shedding advertisers like rain on a summer afternoon as well through the efforts of the Sleeping Giants organization who has taken to notifying advertisers if they know and agree with their ads appearing on a far right wing, racist, fake news site.   Breitbart has lost nearly 1,000 advertisers since their campaign began including BMW, Kellogg, Nordstrom’s, and Lufthansa Airlines.   This successful hit-them-in-the-pocketbook campaign has happened through Anti-Trump resistance.   Congrats to Sleeping Giants for their success.  

In other areas, the Trump Effect has energized resistance too.  CNN keeping up the pressure on the White House and Sean Spicer for misleading the media about the Carl Vinson “armada” that was steaming full speed towards the coast of North Korea last week but wasn’t really, is also part of both the Trump Effect and our resistance.  Tax Day Protests around the country?  Same deal.  The continuing pressure to get to the bottom of the Trump Team’s Russian connections, numerous lawsuits over the Trump Family’s less than arms length control over the Trump Empire and that pillar of integrity, Utah Senator Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) who, with his embarrassing performance spearheading the metaphorical burning at the stake of Planned Parenthood’s Cecile Richards, has declared that he isn’t running for Congress in 2018?  Absolutely fabulous! 

Unfortunately Chaffetz’s damage to Planned Parenthood has succeeded.  Despite his “missteps” during the hearing – attributing a false yet damaging chart to Planned Parenthood when it was submitted by an anti-abortion group, never mentioning that the precipitating videos that led to the hearings were doctored, continuing to erroneously insist that abortion services made up the bulk of PP’s expenditures – several Red states have passed laws to restrict Planned Parenthood’s presence and funding and the brain-dead Republicans in the House of Representatives have stripped all federal funding for Planned Parenthood.  Here’s what their recently passed bill says:

Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2017
This bill prohibits, for a one-year period, the availability of federal funds for any purpose to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., or any of its affiliates or clinics, unless they certify that the affiliates and clinics will not perform, and will not provide any funds to any other entity that performs, an abortion during such period. This restriction does not apply in cases of rape or incest or where a physical condition endangers a woman's life unless an abortion is performed.
Just like Trump’s Muslim Travel Ban, this de-funding Planned Parenthood bill is not based on facts but on “populist” “feelings” and “views” and “beliefs” that when analyzed in the cold, harsh light of data and statistics just makes no sense.  Planned Parenthood cannot use Federal funds for abortions as dictated by the Hyde Amendment that was adopted by Congress in 1976 and no Muslims from the banned countries have committed terrorist attacks here in the United States. 

But the largest positive impact of the Trump Effect?  The pushback against Trump himself and his minions to expose “Fake News” from real news.  To investigate every word that emanates from the White House and Trump’s Twitter tweets to determine whether we are being treated to bullshit or at least some version of truth.  It’s why the Carl Vinson “armada” statements from Trump, Spicer et al, were shown to be misleading at best and a propaganda dodge at worst.   This pushback is also being played out in town hall meeting after town hall meeting all across the country, at least for those Senators and House Representatives who have the courage to hold them.  This too is part of the Anti-Trump resistance.    People – liberals and progressives at least – are pissed off. 

For me personally, the Trump Effect has finally brought some daylight to my decades old question of why it is that Republicans, conservatives and Rust Belters keep on consistently and reliably returning to public office those politicians who year after year pass laws that decimate America’s working and middle classes.  Crush them.  The Trump Effect has made me realize that when your prime sources of news are Rush Limbaugh, Alex Jones’ “Infowars” and Fox News - all of these “news outlets” daily decry the liberal war we are waging on America and Americans and working every single minute of every single day to utterly destroy the country – then it’s really not all that surprising that these folks have not a clue about what’s really happening to them and why it’s happening.  They believe this deluge of anti-liberal propaganda and as a result cannot imagine voting for a candidate who doesn’t support “cutting taxes creates jobs” and “government isn’t the solution, government is the problem” and “those welfare cheats are just lazy” and “illegal immigrants are stealing your jobs.”   We, us liberals, progressives and Democrats, are the convenient bogymen for all the problems the Rust Belters, coal miners and soon to be in the minority White folks have been struggling with and who have been ignored for so long.   It’s too bad that for 30 years they haven’t realized that it’s been their own votes that have done them in. 

But Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) won’t be running for office again.  This, folks, is really big news.

Have A Good Resistance Day!


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