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Hullabaloo


Saturday, March 19, 2016

 
How many will vote for him anyway?

by digby














Huffington Post has a new poll out. Lordy:
Half of America believes Donald Trump’s campaign exhibits fascist undertones, with only 30 percent disagreeing, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. The sentiment isn’t contained to Democrats, who unsurprisingly are willing to agree with a negative statement about their political rivals. Forty-five percent of independents also say Trump’s campaign has echoes of fascism, as do a full 28 percent of Republicans.

About half the country believes Trump encourages violence at his campaign events, with just 34 percent saying he doesn’t. The rest aren’t sure. Meanwhile, 27 percent of Republicans say it’s acceptable to “rough up” protesters at political events...

Two-thirds say there’s more violence at Trump’s events than at those for other candidates, with 62 percent saying the clashes are part of a broader pattern rather than isolated incidents.

That's not to say that people like protesters:

The data indicates that people generally consider protesters and the media to be most responsible for the uptick in violence, even if they also agree that Trump fans the flames. Fifty-four percent say protesters shoulder “a lot” of the blame, 41 percent say Trump’s supporters do and 47 percent say Trump himself does.

Only 23 percent of Republicans, though, say Trump is largely responsible, with barely one-quarter believing that he encourages violence.

Republicans place even less blame on Trump’s supporters, as just 18 percent say they bear a lot of responsibility. In contrast, half place that level of blame on “the mainstream media,” and 78 percent put that degree of fault on protesters.

While some of the GOP response is likely due to rallying around the party’s front-runner, Republicans are also less amenable toward protesting in general. They’re 20 points less likely than Democrats to say it’s acceptable for protesters to turn up at candidates’ rallies, and nearly twice as likely to say it’s all right for those protesters to be thrown out.


I'm sure they had a different opinion a few years back though, aren't you?

These are the same people, after all, who applauded this directive to disrupt town halls nationwide back in 2009:

— Artificially Inflate Your Numbers: “Spread out in the hall and try to be in the front half. The objective is to put the Rep on the defensive with your questions and follow-up. The Rep should be made to feel that a majority, and if not, a significant portion of at least the audience, opposes the socialist agenda of Washington.”

— Be Disruptive Early And Often: “You need to rock-the-boat early in the Rep’s presentation, Watch for an opportunity to yell out and challenge the Rep’s statements early.”

— Try To “Rattle Him,” Not Have An Intelligent Debate: “The goal is to rattle him, get him off his prepared script and agenda. If he says something outrageous, stand up and shout out and sit right back down. Look for these opportunities before he even takes questions.”

Imagine that. Thousands of conservatives converged on town hall meetings to shut down speech and deny their representatives the ability to “have an intelligent debate.” And if you’ve forgotten how all those people got their instructions and information, there were many industry groups coordinating them, one of which was called “Conservatives for Patients Rights”, run by Rick Scott, at the time a disgraced hospital executive and now the governor of Florida.

This is not to say that Republicans were not genuinely upset that people might get affordable health care. The mere idea of it turned them into ravening beasts. For instance this famous exchange outside of a town hall in Columbus, Ohio, in which “protesters” harass and humiliate a man with Parkinson’s disease, screaming “no more handouts!”

Inside the halls, they shouted down their senators and representatives, laughed at people whose children had died for lack of health care and otherwise behaved like animals.

And they engaged in tactics far more intimidating than anything the Black Lives Matter protesters have done: some of them showed up to the town halls armed, at least one carrying a placard saying “it is time to water the tree of liberty!” (a reference to the Thomas Jefferson quote “the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants”).

That practice has become much more common in recent years, being used against gun regulation groups like Moms Demand Action and at various Muslim gatherings and well as the armed “protests” like the Bundy standoff and the recent events in Oregon.

And there is that small matter of decades of right-wing harassment and violence at abortion clinics. Just three months ago a right wing anti-abortion terrorist killed three people in Colorado Springs.

Let's just say that Republicans have a lot of nerve complaining about protesters. Or fascism.


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