Donald Trump

Right Wing Round-Up - 9/30/16

Lance Wallnau: God May Have Led Trump To Hire Steve Bannon

Seven Mountains dominionist Lance Wallnau has been one of the most shameless advocates of Donald Trump's presidential candidacy in the Religious Right, repeatedly explaining that God sometimes anoints secular figures like Trump to carry out His will.

As Peter mentioned earlier today, Wallnau penned a defense of Trump for the cover of the most recent issue of the Pentecostal magazine Charisma. In an interview with Charisma’s Steve Strang that Strang posted on his website on Wednesday, Wallnau said that in the interest of getting Trump elected president, God might have contributed to Trump’s decision to hire Steve Bannon to chair his campaign and might even send an “incident” to trip up Hillary Clinton during a debate.

After Trump’s disastrous feud with the Khan family sent his campaign reeling, Trump fired his top campaign staff and brought on pollster Kellyanne Conway and Breitbart chairman Steve Bannon, a promoter of the racist alt-right movement , to run his campaign. According to Wallnau, this was likely because Trump had received a message to pray to God for help turning his campaign around.

After the Khan debacle, Wallnau said, Trump “brought a woman on as his chief of staff and brought a guy on from Breitbart” and then “he came back, and he started coming back and coming back” in the polls.

Wallnau told Strang that “most people don’t know” the backstory behind this transformation, which is that one of Trump’s faith advisers “received a prophetic word” for Trump that “basically said, ‘If you will humble yourself and pray and call upon the name of the Lord, you’ll be the next president of the United States.’” The pastor conveyed this message to Trump via one of his sons, who “personally handed it to his father and told him to read it on the plane.”

“Now, we do not know what Donald Trump did on that plane,” Wallnau said, “but I can almost prophesy, in his state of mind by himself on the plane looking at the problem he had, I believe he closed his eyes, read that, and in his own way humbled himself and asked God for help. Boom! Within 24 hours the campaign pivoted, he made two critical decisions and it’s been competitive ever since.”

As Peter noted, Wallnau also discussed the presidential debates (the first debate had evidently not happened yet when the interview took place), saying that there was “speculation” as to whether Clinton has the “stamina or ability” to handle a 90-minute face-off with Trump and that God might step in to cause Clinton to stumble.

“So if there is something that’s going on that the public doesn’t know about in terms of stamina or ability,” he said, “it’s quite possible in the course of these debates that something will surface that wasn’t expected. So that’s what a lot of people are wondering, is there going to be an unveiling of an incident that’s going to happen that was unanticipated? Because God is really involved with what’s happening right now, and I think if there was ever a time where the chariot wheels of Pharaoh come off, I think now we ought to be praying that God speeds his path for His purposes because America cannot afford another 48 months of the destructive spiral that it’s in right now.”

Pentecostal Leaders Pray God Will Knock Clinton’s Chariot Wheels Off To Help ‘Anointed’ Trump

Charisma magazine and its affiliated online Charisma News are part of Steve Strang’s publishing empire, aimed at Pentecostal Christians who see American politics enveloped in constant spiritual warfare between believers and demons. (See, for example, senior editor Jennifer Claire’s “Is Hillary Clinton the Antichrist or an Illuminati Witch?”) Charisma has endorsed Trump and has energetically promoted his candidacy, playing a major role in the  Religious Right push to convince conservative Christians that Trump’s candidacy has a divine anointing.

On Sunday evening, Charisma posted an article calling for “urgent prayer” for Donald Trump for Monday night’s debate. The article said that former Trump adviser Frank Amedia had received a revelation from God and “began making phone calls to drum up support for the Kingdom Wide Prayer Watch.” Among those who got involved were Cindy Jacobs, Rick Joyner, Mario Bramnick, Lance Wallnau and Paula White.

Trump is on the focus of the October issue of Charisma magazine, whose cover story is Lance Wallnau’s tale about how God told him that He is raising up Donald Trump like the biblical King Cyrus. This week Strang posted a two-part podcast interviewing Wallnau about Trump’s “anointing” as a “prophetic” instrument of God’s purposes.

Wallnau said people should pray that God will intervene, perhaps during one of the debates, to unveil a Clinton medical problem or otherwise derail her candidacy:

God is really involved with what’s happening right now. And I think if there was ever a time when the chariot wheels of Pharaoh come off, I think now, we ought to be praying that God speeds his path for His purposes because America cannot afford another 48 months of the destructive spiral that it’s in right now.

Of course, most people would hardly describe Trump’s debate performance as an answer to prayer.

Which brings us to the extent to which Charisma is promoting far-right conspiracy theories. This week Bob Eschliman wrote that Clinton’s much celebrated shimmy after Trump said he had a better temperament to be president was in fact evidence of “medical episode”—Eschliman laughably mischaracterized Clinton’s mocking “whew, OK” as a “Howard Dean yell” and described her shimmy as troubling a “shudder” and “tremors.”

Eschliman is also flacking right-wing conspiracy theories that Clinton “cheated” during the early national security forum and Monday night’s debate by wearing a hidden ear piece that she could have used to get instructions from her campaign team. Eschliman said it could have been a hearing aid, a receiver, or an “anti-seizure device,” adding, “None of these paint a particularly good picture for the Democratic presidential nominee. Either she has an as-yet undisclosed health condition, ranging from mild to severe, or she's been cheating during the televised debates.”

In his podcast interview with Wallnau, Strang said he was worried that there isn’t enough “clear solidarity” from preachers and prophets to get enough believers to the polls. Wallnau blamed that possibility on “the left” and some Christian leaders who are trying to mute enthusiasm for Trump by portraying him as a flawed candidate, “morally or whatever.” Wallnau insisted that isn’t true, saying that Trump “has been on a metamorphosis…a total transformation track.”

The Trump Campaign's Latest Tactic Is Straight From The Conservative Echo Chamber

NBC News is reporting that Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, in an effort to regain momentum following the candidate’s poor performance in Monday night’s debate, has begun distributing talking points to surrogates encouraging them to talk about ‘90s era sex scandals.

Putting aside Donald Trump’s own philandering history, these new attacks demonstrate the GOP’s inability to pull themselves out of the right-wing echo chamber and have a broader conversation with voters.

In 2012, Mitt Romney fell victim to conservative insistence that the polls were skewed and that he was therefore all but certain to win the presidency. This belief was ultimately contradicted by voters, who it turned out did not need to be unskewed.  Now, Trump and his allies in the conservative media are doing something similar, pretending that unscientific online polls are the real authoritative sources on public opinion.

Trump’s campaign was born in the far-right media. His ascent to the top of the Republican Party was driven by birtherism and seeded in the deepest, dankest of fever swamps. Then in 2014, while he was preparing to run for president, it has been widely reported that Trump received daily memos outlining the issues and views raised by callers to conservative radio shows. Thus, harsh and often racist anti-immigrant rhetoric became a central tenet of his campaign.

From Rush Limbaugh to Ann Coulter to Michael Savage, many of the leading conservatives now supporting the Trump campaign built their careers on the impeachment of Bill Clinton and spent years attempting to use sex to toxify the president’s public image.

What seems to be forgotten by many in the media and the conservative movement is what a miserable failure their efforts were. Clinton was reelected in 1996 and Democrats gained seats in Congress that year and again in 1998. Republicans lost two House speakers, Newt Gingrich and Bob Livingston, and completely extinguished the flame of their 1994 “revolution” in pursuit of prurient details that would take down the president. And the cumulative effect of this entire period was the elevation of Bill Clinton’s approval ratings.

Despite this failure, two decades later conservatives are once against returning to this same old playbook, but with a new twist. Now they would like to blame Hillary Clinton for the alleged foibles of her husband and use them to convince the American people that she is not suited to hold public office.

Along with the obvious strategic shortcomings of this plan, there is an even more obvious dose of sexism behind these latest attacks—blaming a wife for the actions of her husband. Yet the Trump campaign presses forward, beginning the week with the too-cute-by-half notion that their candidate was courageous for not raising these issues during the debate.

The right-wing echo chamber has been demanding for months that these issues be discussed and Trump is happy to once again oblige, now through his surrogates in the media.

While the symbiotic relationship between Trump and the right-wing media is perhaps greater than with any other Republican candidate in history, it is not wholly unique. That’s why it’s no surprise that in the seven presidential elections since Rush Limbaugh’s radio program was syndicated nationally, the Republican candidate has only been able to win a plurality of the popular vote twice.

Religious Right Backs Bill to Implement Trump’s Pledge to Make Churches More Politically Powerful

Donald Trump has repeatedly pledged to make conservative Christians more politically powerful by eliminating legal restrictions on churches’ and other tax-exempt nonprofits’ ability to do electoral work. On Wednesday two Republican congressmen, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Georgia’s Jody Hice, introduced H.R. 6195, what they call the “Free Speech Fairness Act,” which would lay the groundwork for a President Trump to do just that.

Scalise and Hice were joined at a press conference in the U.S. Capitol by Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, Alliance Defending Freedom legal counsel Christiana Holcomb, and anti-gay activist and pastor Harry Jackson. According to a handout, the bill or the policies represented in it are also supported by Focus on the Family, the Heritage Foundation, the Evangelical Council on Financial Accountability, March for Life Action, Liberty Counsel and Liberty Counsel Action, the American Center for Law and Justice, and the Home School Legal Defense Association.

Trump has said he decided to call for repeal of the Johnson Amendment, which dates to 1954, when he heard from pastors that it restricted their ability to help him get elected. He has made it clear that he sees its repeal as a way to build Christian conservatives’ political muscle. So it was a bit unconvincing to have Scalise and Hice portray their legislation not as a vehicle for turning churches into more effective political machines, but merely an effort to protect the trampled-upon free speech rights of pastors and nonprofits.

Scalise and Hice say their bill would allow churches and nonprofits to make political statements if those statements are in the ordinary course of their regular work and any expenses related to them are de minimis. In their example, a preacher could endorse a candidate as part of a sermon, and a church could do the same in its normal newsletter. Under their rules, they say, the church couldn’t launch a new political direct mail campaign that is outside the normal scope of its work. But given the massive communications networks that many megachurches and nonprofit religious broadcasters have, this seems like more of a fig leaf than an actual limitation.

Before coming to Congress, Hice was a pastor in Georgia. He said he was one of 33 pastors who challenged the Johnson Amendment back in 2008 with the help of ADF, a challenge that grew into “Pulpit Freedom Sunday,” an annual project that encourages pastors to violate legal restrictions by endorsing candidates from the pulpit and daring the IRS to come after them. Not coincidentally, this year’s Pulpit Freedom Sunday is this weekend, October 2.

Speakers at this week’s press conference portrayed the Johnson Amendment as a dire restriction on free speech and religious liberty. ADF’s Holcomb said it has had “devastating impacts on religious freedom and the freedom of speech.” Hice said it is “unconscionable that our government would force individuals to choose between their constitutionally protected rights or their faith.”

Perkins quoted Martin Luther King Jr. at the press conference, and his commentary on the new bill at the Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal features a large photograph of King. []Jackson also cited the civil rights movement. But the example of King actually undermines their hyperbolic claims about Johnson Amendment, which was in effect in the late 1950s and 1960s when African American pastors and churches served as moral and logistical focal points for the civil rights movement. They were not “muzzled” any more than conservative megachurches have been “muzzled” in speaking out about abortion for the past 40 years or rallying their members to vote against equality for LGBT people.

Under the existing IRS rules, the Family Research Council has no problem communicating on the issues of the day with the 11,000 pastors in its network. Indeed, there are currently multiple voter registration and GOTV operations being carried out by Religious Right networks through conservative evangelical churches. Trump and other Republican presidential candidates have appeared before gatherings of pastors brought together by Christian nationalist David Lane, who has recruited hundreds of pastors to run for office.

Their First Amendment freedoms are quite intact. But they’re looking for more—the ability of churches, religious broadcasters and other nonprofits to engage in direct electoral advocacy with tax-exempt funds. Speakers at Religious Right conferences routinely blame what they see as America’s moral decline on timid preaching, and they blame that on pastors who are intimidated by the IRS or hide behind the supposed threat of the IRS to avoid taking strong political stands. Charisma’s Bob Eschliman even said in praising the new bill that the Third Great Awakening—a national spiritual revival longed for by Religious Right leaders—cannot come about until the nation’s pulpits are “unshackled from the Johnson Amendment.”

Perkins, who is honorary chairman for Pulpit Freedom Sunday, bragged about the fact that he worked with the Trump campaign to get language calling for repeal of the Johnson Amendment into the Republican Party platform. He praised Trump for making it a campaign issue, adding, “I hope the next time that I’m talking about this could possibly be as he’s signing it behind his desk as president.”

Another Trump Adviser Appears On Radio Network That Features White Nationalists

Earlier this year, Donald Trump’s presidential campaign landed in hot water when the candidate’s son, Donald Trump Jr., agreed to be interviewed by notorious white nationalist radio host James Edwards. Edwards hosts a show called “The Political Cesspool,” which is syndicated by Liberty News Radio; his interview with Trump Jr. was aired on another Liberty News Radio program called “Liberty Roundtable,” which is hosted by the network’s owner and Edwards friend Sam Bushman.

The Trump campaign received widespread criticism for the interview, especially given Trump’s reluctance to disavow support from white nationalists, but apparently didn’t learn its lesson, because yesterday another Trump aide, economic adviser Stephen Moore, appeared on “Liberty Roundtable” to spin Trump’s abysmal performance in the first presidential debate.

Edwards wasn’t on the program this time, but Moore spoke with Bushman, who grilled him on the false rumor that Alicia Machado, a former Miss Universe whom Trump has repeatedly insulted, used to be a “porn star,” which Bushman recommended that Trump focus on in the next debate.

The allegation caused Moore to erupt in laughter as he claimed that Machado was “lying through her teeth.”

A commercial break during Moore’s appearance on the program included an advertisement from Edwards touting his book “Racism Schmacism” and his show on Bushman's network.

Trump Names 'Pro-Life Advisory Council' In Attempt To Reassure Anti-Choice Movement

Donald Trump’s campaign has given the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody a sneak peek at the members of a “pro-life advisory council” that the candidate is set to introduce today. Earlier this month, Trump sent a letter to “pro-life leaders” laying out a number of promises that he would make to their movement and announcing that Marjorie Dannenfelser, the head of the anti-choice electoral group Susan B. Anthony List, would spearhead the new anti-abortion coalition for his campaign.

Trump has given the anti-abortion movement some serious heartburn during his campaign as he’s continually reshaped his position on the issue and bungled their talking points, including at one point saying that women should face “some form of punishment” for abortion if the procedure is recriminalized. But since earning the Republican nomination, he’s started to win over many skeptical anti-abortion leaders with promises to appoint Supreme Court justices who share their views and to help them dismantle Planned Parenthood.

Brody writes that the full list released today “may indeed give comfort to those remaining evangelicals who are having a tough time making their way to the voting booth this Election Cycle.” Indeed, while Trump has attempted to say different things about abortion rights to different audiences, this new coalition shows that he is ready to go all-in with a movement that ultimately wants to ban the procedure without exception.

On the new list of Trump’s anti-choice allies are a number of legislators who have taken the lead on fighting abortion rights in Congress, including Rep. Marsha Blackburn, who led the House select committee investigating Planned Parenthood, Rep. Diane Black, Rep. Trent Franks and Rep. Chris Smith. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is on the list, as is Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin.

Also joining the new coalition are Religious Right activists including Tony Perkins and Ken Blackwell of the Family Research Council; Gary BauerRalph Reed; the American Principles Project’s Frank Cannon; Bill Dallas of United in Purpose; Concerned Women for America’s Penny Nance; C-FAM’s Austin Ruse; and Ed Martin, head of the late Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum, who is apparently sympathetic to many of Trump’s views.

The list also includes anti-abortion activists Day Gardner of the National Black Pro-Life Union, Kristan Hawkins of Students for LifeAlveda King and Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, and former Americans United for Life president Charmaine Yoest, who now works for Bauer’s American Values.

Dannenfelser has made no secret of the fact that she eventually wants to ban abortion without exception (except for a narrow exemption for saving a woman’s life) and her group opposes some common forms of birth control, claiming that they cause abortions. Many of the activists in Trump’s new coalition have similarly extreme views and are confident that Trump will let them have their way.

Ruse, who works at the United Nations to attempt to stop the adoption of language friendly to LGBT equality and reproductive rights, has declared, for instance, that “comprehensive sexuality education” is “a phrase created in the pits of hell by wicked individuals who wanted to undermine the family and ultimately destroy any institution that stands between the family and the state.” After meeting with Trump earlier this year, Ruse said that the GOP candidate “doesn’t care about” reproductive rights and therefore will “let our side do exactly what we want to do.”

Others have presented different reasons for supporting Trump. Priests for Life’s Pavone, who has said that legal abortion is worse than terrorism, has been somewhat lukewarm about Trump but has argued that Trump’s promises on abortion overcome any other faults he might have.

In response to a caller to a Catholic radio program who said that Trump’s stances on things like nuclear warfare and going after the families of suspected terrorists aren’t exactly pro-life, Pavone said that the potential of Trump dropping an atomic bomb is less dangerous than the certainty of Hillary Clinton continuing the “raging holocaust” of legal abortion. On another radio program, Pavone argued that it is more important that a candidate be “right on abortion” than on “poverty, immigration, war and peace, homelessness [and] health care.”

Pavone, after Trump said he supported punishing women who have abortions, floated the possibility of legal punishments for abortion “accomplices,” such as the person who brings a woman to a clinic.

Pavone’s Priests for Life colleague, Alveda King, also has some extreme views on reproductive rights, including alleging that “chemicals and things” in birth control make women infertile and that Planned Parenthood gives women contraception in order to give them breast cancer.

Other activists in Trump’s coalition have been leaders of the effort to chip away at abortion access by attempting to regulate abortion providers out of existence. When Yoest was at Americans United for Life, she was at the forefront of what she called this “stealth strategy” of “trench warfare and gaining ground under the radar.”

Katrina Pierson Insists That Unscientific Online Polls Are Accurate, Media Polls Are 'Skewed'

On Tuesday, Donald Trump campaign spokeswoman Katrina Pierson took a page from her boss and touted Trump’s performance in post-debate online polls that have no scientific accuracy whatsoever.

After conservative talk show host Joe Pags told Pierson that “news organization polling” is tilted against Trump because media outlets “have some sort of vested interested in getting Hillary Clinton elected,” Pierson said that the scientific polls conducted by media firms are “skewed.”

As proof, she cited the fact that the CNN sampled more Democrats in its poll of debate viewers. Three other scientific polls also found that most people thought that Clinton won the debate.

Pierson vigorously defended the accuracy of voluntary, unscientific online polls: “When you look at the online polls, these are people who are, like I said, not engaged in the day-to-day, 24-hour news cycle, watching cable news all day every day, these are just people. If you’re looking at Time magazine, if you’re on another website and they’re doing a poll and you vote in that poll, by the way, to the tune of over a million votes in some of these polls, that’s important, because those aren’t the people who are in it one way or another, a lot of those people are just engaging.”

However, just the opposite typically occurs, as many online surveys are swarmed by one candidate’s supporters, such as this online poll of around 300,000 votes that found Green Party nominee Jill Stein leading the presidential field with close to 65 percent of the vote.

Fox News’ vice president of public opinion research, Dana Blanton, had to release a memo reaffirming the uselessness of online polls after several Fox News anchors hyped online polls after the debate. (Sean Hannity and Brian Kilmeade, however, continued to cite Trump’s strong performance in such polls after the memo was released). Business Insider reports:

A Fox News executive sent a memo to television producers and the politics team on Tuesday afternoon reminding employees that unscientific online polls "do not meet our editorial standards."

Dana Blanton, the vice president of public-opinion research at Fox News, explained in the memo obtained by Business Insider that "online 'polls' like the one on Drudge, Time, etc. where people can opt-in or self-select … are really just for fun."

"As most of the publications themselves clearly state, the sample obviously can't be representative of the electorate because they only reflect the views of those Internet users who have chosen to participate," Blanton wrote.

As the Fox News executive pointed out, users who participate in such polls must have internet access, be online at the time of the poll, be fans of the website in question, and self-select to participate.

"Another problem — we know some campaigns/groups of supporters encourage people to vote in online polls and flood the results," she wrote. "These quickie click items do not meet our editorial standards."

"News networks and other organizations go to great effort and rigor to conduct scientific polls — for good reason," Blanton wrote in the memo. "They know quick vote items posted on the web are nonsense, not true measures of public opinion."

However, we won’t hold our breath for Trump and his campaign to stop promoting the results of unscientific polls as long as they turn out favorable to them.

Savage: Hillary 'Was Like A Sumo Wrestler Who Won The Debate Right From The Beginning'

Conservative radio host and Donald Trump ally Michael Savage said on his program yesterday that he couldn’t finish watching Monday’s presidential debate because he knew early in the evening that Hillary Clinton had won the contest.

“Hillary knew how to trigger Trump and drag him off balance,” he said, pointing to Clinton’s accurate claim that Trump received $14 million from his father and lamenting that the GOP candidate “fell right into her trap.”

“When she said to him that he inherited $14 million from his father, she fundamentally was like a sumo wrestler who won the debate right from the beginning with that remark because he took the bait and she threw him off the mat,” Savage said. “He was unbalanced from the point on. She knew that he would take the debate and defend his father. Why? Because he has character and she doesn’t. She’s a lowlife with no character, she has no character whatsoever.”

Trump did not in fact “defend his father,” who wasn’t even the subject of the remark, but instead falsely claimed that he had only received a “very small loan.”

Trump's Fans Declare Unscientific Online Polls To Be The New Gold Standard

During the presidential primary season, it was always amusing to watch Donald Trump tout his massive leads in online polls, the notoriously unscientific surveys in which participants can vote more than once and fans of one candidate often swarm the vote.

For example, one online poll has Green Party candidate Jill Stein leading the field with nearly 65% support—hardly a precise barometer of the nation.

Soon after last night’s debate was over, Trump declared himself the winner by citing the results of online polls. “I won every single poll other than CNN,” he said, triumphantly tweeting the findings of several online surveys.

He even claimed he won a CBS poll that didn’t actually exist .

Four scientific polls of debate viewers, on the other hand, found that most viewers believed Clinton won the debate.

While it is comical to watch Trump feed his insatiable narcissism by flaunting unrepresentative polls, Trump’s allies in the media are taking a page from the presumptive GOP nominee.

Fox News host Steve Doocy said it was “crazy” that “Hillary was actually number four behind Jill Stein and Gary Johnson” in one online poll. Fox’s Sean Hannity hyped the nonexistent CBS poll that supposedly showed a Trump lead.

Hannity went so far as to say that unscientific online polls are more accurate than real polls because they “have hundreds of thousands if not millions” of respondents, a statement that’s laughable to anyone with an elementary understanding of statistics.

Another Fox News pundit, Martha MacCallum, even dismissed the CNN poll as an “outlier” because it conflicted with the results of online surveys. The conservative network ran an article —with no byline—on how “online surveys had Donald Trump as the yuge winner,” hailing them as “a good gauge of enthusiasm.”

It seems that many conservatives learned nothing from the 2012 “unskew” the polls movement. That year, fringe right-wing blogs began to champion the conspiracy theory that liberals in the media were skewing public opinion polls in favor of President Obama to hide the fact that Mitt Romney was the clear favorite. The theory eventually made its way toconservative talk radio,Fox News and even to Romney’s presidential campaign.

One of the most prominent poll truthers in that election was none other than Donald Trump.

When Romney lost, many of the conservatives promoting the “unskew” myth were shocked.

Dana Perino, a former Bush aide turned Fox News host, described how many Republicans, including herself, “believed that the polls were skewed in Obama’s favor, and did not take conservative enthusiasm into consideration.”

“On election night when President Obama easily won reelection, I vowed to never put myself in that position again,” she said.

However, her colleagues are doing just that, and Fox News commentators are now citing everything from crowd sizes to Facebook likes to prove that the polls are wrong and Trump is way ahead.

Trump himself has said that polls showing him trailing are “phony” and that the only way he would lose would be if the election were rigged against him and widespread voter fraud occurred. One of his advisers, Roger Stone, said that if Trump loses due to an “illegitimate” election, “it will be a bloodbath.”

The Trump campaign and its supporters in the media aren’t even bothering to “unskew” the polls anymore and are instead content with citing bogus online surveys that should be taken seriously by no one.

As Trump preaches disdain for basic statistics, it seems his conservative allies are more than happy to follow along.

(This post also appears on the Huffington Post).

Mat Staver: Christians Must Vote Trump Because Clinton Will 'Bury You By Destroying The Republic'

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio program, Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver declared that Christians must vote for Donald Trump in November because Hillary Clinton will destroy America.

Staver likened this election to seeking to hire a contractor to build a house, where one builder "may not be able to get it to the actual completion to where you want it to be, but at least they can put a few more bricks in the wall" while the other choice "will put dynamite around the partially constructed house and hit the button and explode it and just completely destroy it."

Trump, Staver said, may not get conservative Christians precisely where they want to go but at least he "is not gonna push the destruct button and literally destroy" America and "bury you by destroying the republic."

"Vote for the person who can at least put a few more bricks in the construction instead of blowing up the house," he said.

Right Wing Round-Up - 9/27/16

  • PFAW: The Numbers Make Clear: Republican Senators Still Refuse to Do Their Jobs.
  • Marge Baker @ The Hill: What 2016 means for the Supreme Court’s path on money in politics.
  • Think Progress: Trump’s breathtaking dishonesty on birtherism.
  • Oliver Darcy @ Business Insider: Fox News hosts help Donald Trump promote unscientific online polls as supposed evidence he won debate.
  • Alex Griswold @ Mediaite: Donald Trump on Not Paying Any Income Tax: ‘That Makes Me Smart’.
  • Ben Collins @ The Daily Beast: Donald Trump’s Online Trolls Turn on Their ‘God Emperor’.
  • Media Matters: Trump Adviser Roger Stone Claims Clinton Was Placed On An “Oxygen Tank” Immediately After Presidential Debate.

Trump's New Pro-Life Adviser Doesn't Want To Talk About Contraception

Yesterday, The Telegraph published a largely sympathetic profile of Marjorie Dannenfelser, the anti-choice leader who is now heading up Donald Trump’s new “pro-life coalition.” Dannenfelser’s organization, the Susan B. Anthony List, is apparently pleased with the article and has been promoting it to its email list.

As The Telegraph notes, Dannenfelser is one of the best messengers the anti-choice movement has, intent on avoiding topics and tone that might make the movement look bad.

So it shouldn’t have been a surprise that when The Telegraph asked her about her stance on contraception, a critical topic in a movement that has differing views on where the line between contraception and abortion stands, Dannenfelser declared that the question was “not relevant”:

As a result, she doesn't want to speak about her views on contraception: apparently "it’s not relevant" and she is "not interested in talking about it".

A follow-up request to the SBA List spokesperson reveals why: the organisation is opposed to some kinds of birth control – namely, IUD coils and the morning after pill – because in both instances, there’s a chance they could prevent a fertilised egg from implanting.

As The Telegraph notes, SBA List does take a stance on contraception. The Guttmacher Institute reported in 2014, “SBA List has routinely referred to emergency contraceptives as ‘abortion drugs’ and describes the copper IUD as causing ‘early abortion.’” This view was critical to the group’s support for Hobby Lobby, which claimed that a requirement that it insure such contraception methods amounted to support for abortion.

Dannenfelser also repeated to The Telegraph her view that abortion should be outlawed with no exceptions except to save the life of a pregnant woman:

So what would her ‘perfect abortion bill’ look like?

“It would have an exception for the life of the mother only," she says, eventually, before her pragmatism rears its head. "But we’re not living a perfect world, and I have also been behind bills that have included the rape, incest and life of the mother exception."

Dannenfelser told the paper that she trusts Trump “immeasurably” (a change from her assertion during the presidential primaries that she was “disgusted” by his treatment of women), specifically citing his pledge to nominate foes of abortion rights to the Supreme Court.

20 Lies Donald Trump Told At The First Presidential Debate

Donald Trump, already notorious for his mind-blowing dishonesty, repeated many of his usual lies during last night’s presidential debate—and added some new ones.

Some of Trump’s whoppers were obviously false, while others required a bit more digging to disprove.

Here are just 20 lies that Trump told during his first debate against Hillary Clinton:

 

Trump’s lies about his own history

Lie #1: Denies making remarks about climate change.

Clinton: “Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it's real.”

Trump: “I did not—I do not say that.”

Trump has in fact said that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese:

Lie #2: Denies his own proposal to negotiate down the debt.

Clinton: “You even went and suggested that you would try to negotiate down the national debt of the United States.”

Trump: “Wrong.”

Trump has said that as president, “I would borrow, knowing that if the economy crashed, you could make a deal” on the debt. Economists have widely panned this idea aseconomically catastrophic.

Lie #3: Denies supporting the Iraq War.

“I did not support the war in Iraq.”

Trump expressed support for the invasion of Iraq before it took place and only said that he opposed the war after the conflict had started.

Lie #4: Denies calling pregnancy a business inconvenience.

Clinton: “This is a man who is called women pigs, slobs and dogs, and someone who has said pregnancy is an inconvenience to employers.”

Trump: “I never said that.”

In 2004, Trump said that pregnancy is “certainly an inconvenience for a business.”

Lie #5: Contradicts himself about his tax audit.

Trump: “I’m under a routine audit.”

[moments later]

Trump: “Look, I have been under audit almost for 15 years. I know a lot of wealthy people that have never been audited. I said, ‘Do you get audited ?’ I get audited almost every year. And in a way I should be complaining. I’m not even complaining. I don't mind them. It’s almost become a way of life. I get audited by the IRS. But other people don't.”

Trump has previously claimed that he is facing an audit, which he has used to justify his refusal to release his tax returns, because he’s “a strong Christian,” but his own lawyers say that the “continuous examination” of his returns is “consistent with the IRS’ practice for large and complex businesses.” Experts also point out that there is nothing preventing Trump from releasing his returns.

Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., said that his father was refusing to release his return because it would be a distraction from his campaign.

Lie #6: Falsely claims he already released key financial information.

“You will learn more about Donald Trump by going down to the federal elections where I filed a one hundred and four page, essentially financial statement of sorts, the forms that they have.”

As PolitiFact notes, this information leaves out essential information, including “details on his effective tax rate, the types of taxes he paid, and how much he gave to charity, as well as a more detailed picture of his income-producing assets.”

Lie #7: Falsely claims he only received a small loan from his father.

“My father gave me a very small loan in 1975.”

Trump has been regaling audiences with the tale that he received a “small loan of a million dollars” from his father, real estate mogul Fred Trump, when he first went into business. Far from an up-from-the-bootstraps success story, Trump regularly relied “on his father’s connections and wealth” in the form of “lucrative trusts” and “numerous loans and loan guarantees, as well as his father’s connections,” The Washington Post reports.

“As Trump’s casinos ran into trouble,” the Post reports, “Trump’s father also purchased $3.5 million gaming chips, but did not use them, so the casino would have enough cash to make payments on its mortgage—a transaction which casino authorities later said was an illegal loan.”

Indeed, loans Trump received from his father amounted to $14 million, “a value of $31 million in today’s dollars.”

Lie #8: Claims Clinton’s campaign, not Trump, started the birther movement.

“They were pressing it very hard, she failed to get the birth certificate. When I got involved, I didn't fail. I got him to give the birth certificate. So I'm satisfied with it, and I’ll tell you why I’m satisfied with it.”

There is no proof that anyone in Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign pushed the birther conspiracy theory. Instead, Trump cited an interview with Clinton’s former campaign manager in which she said that the campaign fired a volunteer who forwarded a birther email. He also cited a conversation that Sidney Blumenthal, who had no formal role in Clinton’s campaign, had with a McClatchy reporter, but McClatchy “found no proof that Blumenthal questioned Obama’s birthplace.”

 

Trump’s lies about the economy and finance

Lie #9: Misleadingly claims jobs are “fleeing” abroad.

“Our jobs are fleeing the country.”

Employment has been rising since the end of the Great Recession, but Trump has been using bogus statistics to claim that unemployment is actually as high as 42 percent.

Lie #10: Falsely claims China is devaluing their currency.

“You look at what China is doing to our country in terms of making our product, they're devaluing their currency and there's nobody in our government to fight them.”

In fact, China has of late been doing the opposite of devaluing its currency.

Ian Talley of The Wall Street Journal notes that while “few U.S. economists would disagree China kept the yuan undervalued over the last two decades,” now, “many economists—including some of the strongest advocates for action against Beijing s—say the yuan is now close to fair value. Beijing appreciated the yuan from 2005 to 2014…. In fact, over the last two years, Beijing burned through nearly a quarter of what was once a $4 trillion currency stockpile to prevent the yuan from falling against the dollar.”

Lie #11 : Baselessly claims the Federal Reserve is “doing political” by not increasing interest rates.

“This Janet Yellen of the Fed, the Fed is doing political by keeping interest rates at this level. And believe me the day Obama goes off and he leaves and he goes out to the golf course for the rest of his life to play golf, when they raise interest rates, you are going to see some very bad things happen because the Fed is not doing their job. The Fed is being more political than Secretary Clinton.”

The Federal Reserve is an independent institution and Trump has yet to offer any evidence that Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen is taking her cues from President Obama, a claim that he has been making for weeks.

 

Trump’s lies about national security

Lie #12 : Absurdly claims Clinton has fought ISIS for decades.

“No wonder you’ve been fighting ISIS your entire adult life.”

ISIS was created out of the Islamic State of Iraq, which was founded in 2006, and was in turn the descendent of Al Qaeda in Iraq, established in 2004. Hillary Clinton is 68 years old and graduated from college in 1969.

Lie #13 : Claims other countries don’t pay us for military defense.

“We defend Germany. We defend South Korea. We defend Saudi Arabia. We defend countries. They do not pay us what they should be paying us because we are providing tremendous service and we’re losing a fortune.”

The U.S. is hardly “losing a fortune” in military aid.

Lie #14 : Falsely claims NATO allies aren’t paying the U.S.

Trump: “We pay approximately 73 percent of the cost of NATO.”

Not even close .

Lie #15: Falsely claims the U.S. paid Iran $400 million.

“One of the great giveaways of all time, of all time, including four hundred million dollars in cash nobody’s ever seen that before that turned out to be wrong.”

As the New York Times notes, the money Trump referenced “was Iran’s money, for military goods never delivered to Iran after the Iranian Revolution.”

 

Trump’s lies about crime

Lie #16: Absurdly suggests America is experiencing a crime wave.

“We have a situation where we have our inner cities, African-American, Hispanics, are living in hell because it's so dangerous. You walk down the street, you get shot. In Chicago, they’ve had thousands of shootings, thousands, since January first. Thousands of shootings. And I’m saying where is this? Is this a war-torn countr y?”

Far from a crime wave, FactCheck.org points out that the violent crime rate “is lower than it has been since 1970” and “the murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate nationwide, at 4.5 in 2014, was at its lowest point since at least the early 1960s.”

Lie #17: Baselessly says stop and frisk “worked very well” in New York.

“You do stop and frisk, which worked very well—Mayor Giuliani is here worked very well in New York.”

Katherine Krueger of TPM writes that a “2013 report from the New York attorney general found that out of 2.4 million stops by police between 2009 and 2012, the stops resulted in a 3 percent conviction rate, and just 0.1 percent of the total stops went on to a violent crime conviction.” Other cities that did not use stop and frisk experienced similar dips in crime, and one study, according to the Washington Post , “found that a high rate of stop-and-frisks was not associated with reduced crime when the practice was indiscriminate.” New York City’s crime rate continued to fall after stop-and-frisk was ended.

Lie #18: Falsely claims the murder rate in New York went up after the end of stop and frisk.

Clinton: “Well, it's also fair to say, if we’re going to talk about mayors, that under the current mayor crime has continued to drop, including murders. So there is—“

Trump: “You're wrong.”

Clinton: “No, I'm not.”

Trump: “Murders are up.”

Trump is wrong: Homicides in New York have been on the decline.

Lie #19: Falsely claims stop and frisk wasn’t ruled unconstitutional.

Lester Holt: “Stop and frisk was ruled unconstitutional in New York because it largely singled out black and Hispanic young men.”

Trump: “No, you're wrong. It went before a judge who was a very against-police judge. It was taken away from her and our mayor, our new mayor, refused to go forward with the case. They would have won an appeal.”

Trump is wrong: Stop and frisk was ruled unconstitutional in 2013 .

Lie #20: Falsely claims ICE endorsed him.

“I was is endorsed by ICE. They’ve never endorsed anybody before on immigration. I was just endorsed by ICE.”

ICE is a federal agency and has not endorsed Trump, or any other candidate for that matter.

Trump Wasn't 'Endorsed By ICE,' But He Was Backed By Group That Attacked DACA

At last night's presidential debate, Hillary Clinton apparently got under Donald Trump's skin when she brought up a letter signed by 50 Republican national security experts who said that Trump would be "the most reckless President in American history." Trump responded:

I do want to say that I was just endorsed—and more are coming next week—it will be over 200 admirals, many of them here—admirals and generals endorsed me to lead this country. That just happened, and many more are coming. And I’m very proud of it.

In addition, I was just endorsed by ICE. They’ve never endorsed anybody before on immigration. I was just endorsed by ICE. I was just recently endorsed—16,500 Border Patrol agents.

Trump's boast of military endorsers seems to be a reference to a letter in support of his candidacy signed by 88 retired generals and admirals. The list contained no "major names," but did include such activists asJerry Boykin. Boykin, who was repeatedly criticized by President George W. Bush for giving speeches framing the fight against terrorism as a holy war between Christianity and Islam, now has a platform for his vicious anti-gay and anti-Muslim rhetoric as a top official at the Family Research Council.

The immigration allies Trump mentioned are similarly troubling. Trump was clearly not, as he claimed, endorsed by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which is a federal agency that cannot endorse candidates. He was probably referring instead to his endorsement that morning from the National ICE Council, a union the represents somewhere between 5,000 and 7,600 of the agency's 20,000 employees. The other endorsement he boasted of was that of the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), a union for border patrol officers.

As the Center for New Community has documented, both the National ICE Council and the NBPC have close ties to the organized anti-immigrant movement. “Instead of fulfilling organized labor’s traditional role of advocating for respectable wages and working conditions, leaders of these particular unions appear more focused on coordinating with special interest groups in the Beltway to advance anti-immigrant policy goals,” the Center wrote in a recent report.

The Center explains how the leadership of the National ICE Council collaborated with leading anti-immigrant groups to challenge President Obama’s DACA order in the courts and speak out against it in public:

In August 2012, shortly after the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) was announced, but before it was enacted, ten ICE agents filed a lawsuit against then DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano and the directors of ICE and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The lead plaintiff in the lawsuit was Christopher Crane, President of the National ICE Council. In anticipation of President Obama announcing the DACA program, the leaders of the anti-immigrant movement began exploring ways to counter the program by falsely arguing that DACA represented an unconstitutional act of executive overreach. In order to mount a legal challenge against the program, however, the leaders of that movement needed to recruit a plaintiff who could credibly claim injury and be granted legal standing in a court of law.

Chris Crane was their man.

Crane v. Napolitano was initially dismissed on a legal technicality, and then in a separate ruling on April 7, 2015 the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals once again dismissed Crane and his colleagues’ case. Despite this, the lawsuit allowed anti-immigrant groups like NumbersUSA to construct a platform from which Crane could act as a prominent spokesperson, helping to advance the anti-immigrant movement’s targeting of DACA. NumbersUSA announced that it would cover all legal fees incurred for the duration of the suit, and the anti-immigrant movement’s most prominent attorney, Kris Kobach, was recruited to represent Crane and his colleagues. …

In announcing the National ICE Council’s endorsement of Trump, Crane cited the Republican candidate’s support for “the canceling of executive amnesty and non-enforcement directives”—in other words, DACA and DAPA.

The border patrol officers’ group has had similar collaboration with anti-immigrant groups. That includes, according to the Center for New Community, a California official with the union helping to tip off the extremist anti-immigrant activists who in the summer of 2014 physically blocked busses of Central Americans fleeing violence who were being brought to a border patrol facility.

Glenn Beck Says Ted Cruz Endorsed Donald Trump Because He Lost Faith In Divine Providence

Glenn Beck appeared on Dana Loesch's program, which airs on his TheBlaze television network, last night to discuss his outrage and disappointment in Ted Cruz for endorsing Donald Trump. He speculated that "the smarmiest of the smarmy" within the Texas GOP had threatened to destroy Cruz's political career and derail his bid for re-election in 2016 if he didn't endorse Trump, which caused Cruz to cave because he lost faith in divine providence.

"I think he had a moment of doubt, not of the people, of the protection of divine providence," Beck theorized.

Beck said that if he lost his entire company and wound up in jail, he would trust that divine providence would ensure that he still had a voice because even "Nelson Mandela had a voice because he was in jail."

"If you really know your principles and you say, 'I believe in the protection of divine providence, whatever is supposed to happen and get His message out, He will get it out,'" Beck said, "I believe in that. What Ted did was, I think, is what all of them do, 'I've got to be there so I've to to triangulate, this will work and this won't work and I don't see a way of that working.'"

"Well, I don't see a way that any of this works. I believe that will work," Beck said, pointing to heaven.

Trump Justifies Criticism Of Miss Universe Winner: 'She Gained A Massive Amount Of Weight'

At the very end of last night’s presidential debate, Hillary Clinton brought up the story of Alicia Machado, a former Miss Universe who says that Trump, the owner of the pageant, called her “‘Miss Piggy’ after she gained weight and ‘Miss Housekeeping’ because she was not fully fluent in English.”

Trump, who still seems to be nursing an inexplicable grudge against Rosie O’Donnell, also couldn’t help but continue to trash Machado after the debate.

On “Fox and Friends” this morning, Trump attempted to justify his treatment of Machado, whom he referred to as “a girl,” by citing her “attitude” and the fact that “she gained a massive amount of weight” after winning the beauty pageant.

“I know that person,” he said. “That person was a Miss Universe person and she was the worst we ever had. The worst. The absolute worst. She was impossible. And she was a Miss Universe contestant and ultimately a winner who they had a tremendously difficult time with as Miss Universe… She was the winner and she gained a massive amount of weight and it was a problem. We had a real problem. Not only that, her attitude. And we had a real problem with her.”

Rick Joyner: Donald Trump Is Just Like St. Peter

Last week on “The Jim Bakker Show,” Rick Joyner said that Donald Trump is the “warrior leader” that the U.S. needs at this time of war and insecurity.

Joyner, a conservative televangelist, even compared Trump to St. Peter, saying that like St. Peter, Trump is outspoken, bold, tireless and, absurdly, “humble.”

“All I’m saying, I’m just saying, I’m just saying, he is going to say some outrageous things but he’s an honest man,” Joyner said of Trump.

New List Makes Even Clearer the Dangers of a Trump Supreme Court

Much has already been written about the dangers that a Supreme Court with even one or two Donald Trump-appointed justices would pose to all our rights and liberties. Trump’s latest list of 10 more possible nominees makes that even clearer. In making his announcement last Friday, Trump proclaimed he was using the late Justice Antonin Scalia as a model for his picks, delighting the far Right. A quick look at these potential nominees’ records shows that they would in fact swing the court far to the right, maybe even further than Justice Scalia, on issues like the environment, voting rights, money in politics, consumer rights, gun violence, LGBT and reproductive rights and more. For the sake of all our rights and liberties, Trump cannot be given the opportunity to nominate Supreme Court justices.

Most of the attention so far has focused on Trump’s naming of Sen. Mike Lee as a potential Supreme Court nominee. Among his many other radical positions, Lee has denounced Supreme Court decisions upholding marriage equality and a woman’s right to choose, and has claimed that Social Security, Medicare, the Affordable Care Act, minimum wage and child labor laws, and many more are unconstitutional. Although Lee has indicated he is satisfied with his current job, at least for now, the prospect of Lee on the court has excited the far Right.

The lesser-known candidates on Trump’s list are similarly alarming. Florida Supreme Court Justice Charles Canady, who as a member of the House helped lead the fight to impeach President Clinton in the Senate, has been dubbed one of the Florida Court’s “Scalia-Thomas duo” because of far-right dissents he and one other conservative have written. These included one dissent that would have invalidated state restrictions on soliciting campaign contributions by state judges, and another that would have reversed a decision protecting vulnerable seniors from mandatory arbitration rules by nursing homes.

Another new Trump candidate, Neil Gorsuch of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, recently argued that the Supreme Court’s Chevron decision, under which courts defer to environmental and other agency interpretations of ambiguous laws and which even Justice Scalia had supported, is unconstitutional and should be overruled. Tim Tymkovich, another 10th Circuit judge on Trump’s new list, argued in a dissent that a federal regulation banning the carrying and storing of guns on U.S. Postal Service property should be partially struck down as unconstitutional.

The records of other state supreme court judges on Trump’s list are also disturbing. Georgia’s Keith Blackwell wrote in one case that homeowners injured by a plant’s release of hydrogen sulfide gas could not bring a class action against the plant, even though several lower courts said that they could. Iowa’s Edward Mansfield argued in one dissent that a fired employee should not be able to claim retaliatory discharge when she was fired by an assisted living facility for complaining about a supervisor forging state-mandated training documents. And Michigan’s Robert Young campaigned for re-election as a Tea Party candidate, appearing before Tea Party groups and securing their endorsements. His judicial record has been criticized as “partisan, wildly activist, rabidly pro-insurance, and anti-consumer.” For example, in one case he dissented from a decision that restored the basic rule, which he himself had helped strike down in an earlier case, that allows auto accident victims to sue for pain and suffering. And Young wrote one opinion upholding a requirement mandating photo ID at the polls, despite another judge’s contention that “history will judge us harshly” for the decision.

Perhaps the best summary of Trump’s new list was offered by Carrie Severino of the right-wing Judicial Crisis Network. Trump “continues to take unprecedented steps,” she proclaimed, to show that he would nominate people “like Scalia, Thomas, and Alito” to the Supreme Court. Severino and Trump are clearly hoping that this will shore up Trump’s support on the far Right. In fact, it has already helped secure Trump’s endorsement by former rival and right-wing Sen. Ted Cruz. But for all other Americans, the prospect of Trump nominees to the Supreme Court is truly frightening. This November, voters need to ensure that Donald Trump does not become President Trump.

This piece originally appeared in The Huffington Post.

Ted Cruz Tries To Justify Trump Endorsement To A Furious Glenn Beck

On Friday, Ted Cruz officially endorsed Donald Trump and the news did not sit well with Glenn Beck, who had campaigned for Cruz during the Republican primaries on the grounds that he had been anointed by God to save America, and who has vowed never to support Trump.

Cruz appeared on Beck's radio show today to try and justify his decision and it did not go well for Cruz.

Beck grilled the Texas senator on what could have changed about Trump to convince him that he can now support the man he once called an utterly amoral pathological liar. Cruz defended himself almost entirely by citing Trump's latest promise to appoint conservatives to the Supreme Court, which Beck wasn't buying because Trump first made that promise months ago and yet Cruz still refused to endorse Trump when he spoke at the Republican National Convention in July.

"I'm asking you for new information," Beck said. "Why now?"

Upon returning from a commercial break, Beck unloaded on Cruz and his disingenuous justification for endorsing Trump, declaring that Cruz had said things during their interview that Beck personally knows to be untrue.

"For the very first time, I heard Ted Cruz calculate and when that happened, the whole thing fell apart for me," Beck said, declaring that he blames himself for thinking that Cruz was a man of principle instead of just another politician.

Eventually, Beck's fury got the better of him as he worked himself up into a bellowing frenzy.

"We have become PETA. Shame on all of us," Beck fumed over being repeatedly told by Cruz that this election represents a "binary choice" between Hillary Clinton and Trump, outraged that on every issue, the only thing that seems to matter now is that you agree with the people on your side.  "Why not, if you won't vote for Hillary or you won't vote for Trump, why not just cover me in a bucket of blood?"

"Why not just shame me in the public square?" Beck thundered. "There is no difference between the two teams any more ... Which one is for the idea that all men are created equal? That all men have a right to pursue their own happiness and make their own goddamn decisions? Which one? Which one? I contend neither of them and so we will just soak each other in buckets of blood. We'll be a happy little bumper-sticker community that shames one another to make sure you walk in goosestep with all the other Hillary supporters or walk in goosestep with all the other Trump supporters."

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Donald Trump Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Friday 09/30/2016, 5:33pm
Caitlin MacNeal @ TPM: Trump Goes After Ex-Miss Universe In Late Night Tweetstorm: ‘Check Out Sex Tape!' Jeremy Stahl @ Slate: Congresswoman Defends Trump’s 5 a.m. Sex Tweet: “That’s the Kind of President We Need". Oliver Willis @ Media Matters: The Men Behind Trump’s Attacks On Clinton Marriage Have A History Of Sexual Harassment, Spousal Abuse, And Marital Infidelity. Sean Mandell @ Towleroad: Candidate for Utah Senate Trolls Woman Mourning Gay Teen Who Committed Suicide. Richard Bartholomew: Jonathan Cahn Denounces... MORE >
Miranda Blue, Friday 09/30/2016, 1:27pm
Seven Mountains dominionist Lance Wallnau has been one of the most shameless advocates of Donald Trump's presidential candidacy in the Religious Right, repeatedly explaining that God sometimes anoints secular figures like Trump to carry out His will. As Peter mentioned earlier today, Wallnau penned a defense of Trump for the cover of the most recent issue of the Pentecostal magazine Charisma. In an interview with Charisma’s Steve Strang that Strang posted on his website on Wednesday, Wallnau said that in the interest of getting Trump elected president, God might have... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Friday 09/30/2016, 11:42am
Charisma magazine and its affiliated online Charisma News are part of Steve Strang’s publishing empire, aimed at Pentecostal Christians who see American politics enveloped in constant spiritual warfare between believers and demons. (See, for example, senior editor Jennifer Claire’s “Is Hillary Clinton the Antichrist or an Illuminati Witch?”) Charisma has endorsed Trump and has energetically promoted his candidacy, playing a major role in the  Religious Right push to convince conservative Christians that Trump’s candidacy has a divine anointing. On Sunday... MORE >
Ari Rabin-Havt, Thursday 09/29/2016, 5:49pm
NBC News is reporting that Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, in an effort to regain momentum following the candidate’s poor performance in Monday night’s debate, has begun distributing talking points to surrogates encouraging them to talk about ‘90s era sex scandals. Putting aside Donald Trump’s own philandering history, these new attacks demonstrate the GOP’s inability to pull themselves out of the right-wing echo chamber and have a broader conversation with voters. In 2012, Mitt Romney fell victim to conservative insistence that the polls were skewed... MORE >
Peter Montgomery, Thursday 09/29/2016, 4:32pm
Donald Trump has repeatedly pledged to make conservative Christians more politically powerful by eliminating legal restrictions on churches’ and other tax-exempt nonprofits’ ability to do electoral work. On Wednesday two Republican congressmen, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Georgia’s Jody Hice, introduced H.R. 6195, what they call the “Free Speech Fairness Act,” which would lay the groundwork for a President Trump to do just that. Scalise and Hice were joined at a press conference in the U.S. Capitol by Family Research Council President Tony Perkins,... MORE >
Miranda Blue, Thursday 09/29/2016, 1:43pm
Earlier this year, Donald Trump’s presidential campaign landed in hot water when the candidate’s son, Donald Trump Jr., agreed to be interviewed by notorious white nationalist radio host James Edwards. Edwards hosts a show called “The Political Cesspool,” which is syndicated by Liberty News Radio; his interview with Trump Jr. was aired on another Liberty News Radio program called “Liberty Roundtable,” which is hosted by the network’s owner and Edwards friend Sam Bushman. The Trump campaign received widespread criticism for the interview, especially... MORE >
Miranda Blue, Thursday 09/29/2016, 12:09pm
Donald Trump’s campaign has given the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody a sneak peek at the members of a “pro-life advisory council” that the candidate is set to introduce today. Earlier this month, Trump sent a letter to “pro-life leaders” laying out a number of promises that he would make to their movement and announcing that Marjorie Dannenfelser, the head of the anti-choice electoral group Susan B. Anthony List, would spearhead the new anti-abortion coalition for his campaign. Trump has given the anti-abortion movement some serious... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Thursday 09/29/2016, 9:59am
On Tuesday, Donald Trump campaign spokeswoman Katrina Pierson took a page from her boss and touted Trump’s performance in post-debate online polls that have no scientific accuracy whatsoever. After conservative talk show host Joe Pags told Pierson that “news organization polling” is tilted against Trump because media outlets “have some sort of vested interested in getting Hillary Clinton elected,” Pierson said that the scientific polls conducted by media firms are “skewed.” As proof, she cited the fact that the CNN sampled more Democrats in its poll... MORE >