Monday, March 18, 2024

Republicans Just Aren't Into Appealing to Hispanic Voters (Probably Because of MAGA)

The Republican National Committee (RNC) has shuttered multiple Hispanic outreach centers across the country, and is scrapping plans to open more in the months leading up to the presidential election.

One such center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is particularly noticeable, as it's been closed since mid-2022 and is in the city where the RNC plans to hold its political convention later this year. The RNC doesn't appear to even be trying to reopen it.

From Wisconsin Public Radio:

Earlier this year, the Republican National Committee said it planned to reopen the center, and in a statement issued this week, RNC Chair Michael Whatley said the party would still organize in communities that are not traditionally Republican.

But RNC spokespersons did not respond to questions from WPR about whether Milwaukee’s center would reopen, and a visit to the building Friday revealed it was still shuttered. Nearby business owners said they haven’t seen any activity in the building recently.

Republicans are trying to make Latinx voters a priority this election cycle. Polling shows that Latinx voters are split, with more just slightly more leaning toward backing President Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee for president, over Republican nominee Donald Trump.

But with the GOP nominee comparing immigrants to "animals," it's becoming more likely that small split will widen even further in the months ahead. The closure of RNC-based Hispanic outreach centers is simply more indication that the party isn't really interested in appealing to Latinx voters, and is more concerned about placating a base of MAGA supporters that harbor xenophobic views.

Indeed, according to Reuters, the plan to open more resource centers to appeal to voters of color is being axed by none other than the Trump campaign itself

It's really not hard to comprehend why.

(Still, Democratic candidates aren't doing much to prove they're the better option, either...)

Mohamed_hassan/Pixabay, with edits

Trump Promises "Bloodbath" If He Loses 2024 Election

During a rally in Ohio over the weekend, Donald Trump told his supporters that violence would erupt if he lost the upcoming presidential election to President Joe Biden.

Trump didn't indicate if he'd be leading the impending "bloodbath" as he described it, in the event of his loss, but he didn't say he wouldn't be supportive of it, either.

Per The New York Times:

While discussing the U.S. economy and its auto industry, Mr. Trump promised to place tariffs on cars manufactured abroad if he won in November. He added: “Now, if I don’t get elected, it’s going to be a blood bath for the whole — that’s going to be the least of it. It’s going to be a blood bath for the country.”
Trump also degraded immigrants coming to the U.S., denigrating their status as even being human beings.

"I don't know if you call them people ... these are animals," Trump said during the rally.

("Oh, but the CONTEXT!" some Trump fans are yelling, defending his choice of words...yeah, about that...)

Trump White House Archives/Public Domain

Monday, February 19, 2024

Dissecting a Presidents Day Truth Social Post from Ex-President Donald Trump

It's Presidents Day. Former President Donald Trump's social media posts don't get as much scrutiny as they have in the past, likely due to his posting exclusively on his fledgling Truth Social website. But since he's running for president again, it's important to examine just how wrong and misinformative his posts really are.

Americans should know the truth about Trump, including how he's spreading falsehoods about himself and the criminal charges he faces. So here, briefly, is an examination of a Truth Social post he recently made:

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers Signs New Legislative Maps, Ends GOP's Gerrymandering

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers has signed new legislative maps for Wisconsin, hopefully ending the redistricting debate in Wisconsin, at least for the remainder of this year.

Evers's maps were considered by Republicans, who run the state legislature, as the better option between accepting his redrawing of legislative districts and the possibility that the state Supreme Court might adopt maps that would produce worse outcomes for them. They passed his maps last week.

There was some speculation over whether Evers would sign the bill or not — he could have vetoed them, and allowed the state Supreme Court to issue a ruling on which of the several maps submitted to them should be enacted. But doing so would have been odd, and potentially seen as political, as the legislature sent him the very same maps he had proposed.

So the governor signed them, flanked by supporters who held signs that read, "Doing the Right Thing."

"Wisconsinites want fair maps, and Wisconsinites deserve fair maps," Evers said as he signed the legislation into law.

Even though Evers, a Democrat, drew the maps, analyses that Republicans will still likely win the state legislature under them, although by a much slimmer margin and with more districts likely to be competitive, thus allowing at least the possibility that the maps could result in Democrats winning, either in 2024 or in the future.

Under the older maps that are now gone, Republicans enjoyed robust, nearly veto-proof majorities in both houses of the state legislature — despite the fact that Wisconsin is a "purple" state, where most of the statewide elections in the past decade were within just a few points of the top two candidates running. Evers won reelection to the governorship in 2022, for example, with over 51 percent of the vote. However, Republicans carried the state Assembly, winning 64 of the 99 seats within the chamber.

Democrats and stewards of good democracy alike should be happy with Monday's outcome — these new maps are more competitive, and will allow voters, not lawmakers, to decide who wins or loses. 

What's needed next, however, is reform of how district maps are drawn in the future. We came close to that, when Republicans drew up legislation mirroring the "Iowa Model" for map-drawing, but did so with a means of allowing them to still draw boundaries benefiting themselves (as they did in 2011 and 2022) without bipartisan input, if the maps from an independent commission were twice rejected. As Jay Heck, executive director of Common Cause Wisconsin, told the Wisconsin Examiner last year, the plan was never a serious reconsideration from Republicans to reform the process:

Say it’s voted down twice, the Legislature can do what they normally do, which is just amend the legislation and pass whatever version they want. And so that would allow the Republicans in Wisconsin to just vote down the nonpartisan maps twice and then put forward their own plan.