Thune Smooches Trump’s “New Direction”

Hey, it’s Democratic National Convention week… so it’s time for KELO-TV’s Leland Steva to interview John Thune about last week’s Republican National Convention. Cue awkward smoochie sounds:

“Donald Trump represents a new direction and again I don’t agree with everything. I don’t agree with some of his tactics or the way he goes about doing things but I think the choice for the American people is a very clear one,” Thune said [Leland Steva, “Senator Thune Talks About Republican Convention,” KELO-TV, 2016.07.25].

The logical follow-up here is, “Like what, Senator Thune? On what don’t you agree with your Presidential nominee?” or, “Does new direction mean positive direction?” But Steva doesn’t press Thune on his disagreements or on whether “new direction” means anything other than surrendering Europe to Trump’s pal Putin. Steva just slop-confabulates Trump’s false cries of rising crime with Thune’s vague concerns about national security:

Despite FBI numbers showing the violent crime rate has been decreasing for years, whoever took the podium during the Republican National Convention talked about the need to improve national security. Thune agrees with the message.

“I think we need to be coming up with solutions to keep Americans safe in what is becoming an increasingly dangerous world,” Thune said [Steva, 2016.07.25].

Senator John Thune, for the rest of this election.
Senator John Thune, for the rest of this election.
Steva gets points for including the hyperlink but loses points for not asking Thune directly to square fact with convention fiction.

Steva helps Thune with a CBS poll showing 67% of Americans don’t think Hillary Clinton is honest or trustworthy. Steva doesn’t mention that the same poll shows 56% of Americans don’t find Donald Trump honest or trustworthy. He also omits that the same poll shows zero post-convention bump for Trump: compared to the results of a CBS pre-convention poll, Trump and Clinton both gained two points and stayed tied after Trump’s RNC speech. Most importantly, Steva leaves out that while Trump beats Clinton in popular perception of having “strong qualities of leadership,” Clinton beats Trump on temperament, personality, and preparation for the job (61% say Trump lacks the temperament and personality of a good President, and 58% say he’s not prepared for the job).

Steva misses another chance to contradict Thune’s bubbles-and-bunny-farts assessment that “Republicans came out of the convention in pretty good shape.” The CBS poll shows that while 50% of registered voters who watched the convention came away thinking better of Trump and 36% came away thinking worse of the nominee, 43% of convention-viewing voters came away thinking worse of the GOP, just a tick more than the 42% who came away thinking better of Thune’s party. Better study that number, Senator Thune: your nominee’s Manhattan tuxedo coattails appear to be a little short. Not that The Donald minds—Trumpism says as long as he builds his brand, who cares what happens to anyone else’s, right?

25 Responses to Thune Smooches Trump’s “New Direction”

  1. Steva got that same tingle in his legs that Chris Mathews got in speaking of George W. Bush.

  2. John Thune says:

    “I don’t agree with some of [Donald Trump’s] tactics or the way he goes about doing things but I think the choice for the American people is a very clear one.”

    The choice definitely seems clear for pro-liberty Christians. Choose Darrell Castle in the states where he’s on the ballot and Gary Johnson in the rest:

    Maybe Darrell will actually win some states and throw the election into the House of Representatives, in which case he’ll most likely end up winning the presidency, with Pence as vice president:

    If no candidate receives a majority of Electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects the President from the 3 Presidential candidates who received the most Electoral votes. Each state delegation has one vote. The Senate would elect the Vice President from the 2 Vice Presidential candidates with the most Electoral votes. Each Senator would cast one vote for Vice President.

  3. mike from iowa

    In the scenario Kurt puts forth, kristians should not be allowed to vote.

  4. Why is anybody asking Thune about the GOP Party national convention? He wasn’t there.

  5. Challenge — Cory, after elected you need to get ‘bubbles-and-bunny-farts’ language into some piece of legislation.

  6. John Thune: “Donald Trump represents a new direction”

    I’m not really sure I can agree with that. China built a big wall a few thousand years ago, Germany had one for a while, Israel still has one…. nothing new.

    Treating minorities and women as second class citizens isn’t exactly new. Many nations continue with this belief today and our own history shows we felt the same in the past (some would argue in many cases/areas we still have these biases). Labeling all members of a particular race or religion as the enemy isn’t really a new concept either. History has hundreds of such examples many of which ended in genocide.

    Maybe Thune meant his new direction of suggestion tax cuts for the ultra wealthy or the new direction of electing someone who demeans those with disabilities. Maybe he meant the new direction of nominating someone who has been married three times and has five different kids from different women, and who is currently under investigation for running a fake University among other things as the person who best represents the Republican Party which has always prided itself upon being the party with “traditional American values”.

    Or maybe the new direction is committing fraud to finance a failing casino, or using the bankruptcy laws to insulate themselves from their failures as investors and taxpayers cover the losses. Or perhaps the new direction is meant to apply to a candidate which essentially has not expressed any detail for any policy positions aside from building a wall that he expects another sovereign nation to pay for.

    Could it be that the new direction is that a man who has for decades shunned religion and previously was pro-choice somehow convinced the typical Republican voter that he was the best suited to represent their interests?

    Perhaps the new direction is one where a Billionaire brags about his personal wealth and about how much he donates to charity and how big his hands are and about how he has the best words and how he alone can solve America’s problems but when pressed for facts or answers he refuses to provide any support for his claims?

    Or maybe that new direction was insulting a sitting US Senator and suggesting he isn’t a hero even though he spent years in captivity where he was beaten merely because of his status in the US military. Is that the new direction Thune is speaking of?

    I guess I’m not sure what new direction we are supposed to see here. It isn’t that Trump has new ideas – because they are the same old ideas and platitudes we have heard for decades. It isn’t that Trump has a bold vision, because his entire vision could be disputed by the Kool-Aid Man. It isn’t that Trump is a man of morality, because he has had multiple mistresses, multiple failed marriages, multiple legal problems due to his unethical behavior, and a blatant desire to use others for his benefit. It isn’t that Trump is the most well qualified to be elected as he has zero political experience, no understanding of foreign policy, and has shown a complete misunderstanding of the US Constitution.

    I guess I do agree with Senator Thune in one respect and that that I too think the choice for the American people is a very clear one… and that choice is “anyone but Donald Trump”.

  7. Roger Cornelius

    You call that an interview?

    Steva just as well have asked what Thune’s favorite color is.

  8. Trump is a racist. So does photo op support him for this,

  9. mike from iowa

    Marlboro Barbie palling around with a known racist.
    Wingnuts said Obama was palling around with known terrorist-Bill Ayers.

  10. mike from iowa

    Marlboro Barbie’s choice for Potus rips off little children-

    Way to not discriminate who you cheat, Drumpf.

  11. Steva is just another concubine for the republican party. If he were a serious newsman, he even could have asked about the law and order of, say a Supreme Court Justice. Merrick Garland is now at 127 days since nomination. Thuney proves republicans don’t give a damn about law and order. Rounds, the same because of EB5 and the rest of the crooked deals he under his watch.

  12. mikeyc, that's me!

    I thought most of the legislating in Pierre lately has been “bubbles-and-bunny-farts”.

  13. Cory, would you expect anything less from Thune backing his fellow party candidate. Democrats are backing Hillary when even the polls show people don’t trust her or Trump. I didn’t agree with Sanders on every issue but I would support him for his honesty. Why would Americans elect a president that is not trustworthy. None of us know how this election turn out. Our great country cannot afford a corrupt federal or state government. It’s time for people to wake up and elect leaders for the good of all Americans. Let’s send all the liars home! Go Sanders.

  14. (Jim in DC, I think I can work that into a Regental funding bill: “Approval of further funding for athletic facilities at South Dakota State University shall depend on dedication of a certain percentage of research hours to investigating the impact of climate change on the prairie ecosystem as well as possible sources of greenhouse gas emissions from the prairie ecosystem, including but not limited to livestock, mechanized agriculture, wetland gas bubbles, and bunny farts.”)

  15. You know, Ror, Greg Belfrage interviewed me about the RNC, and I wasn’t there. Of course, he followed that up immediately with David Wheeler, who was there. Did KELO-TV catch up with any delegates at the airport?

  16. Craig, excellent deconstruction of Thune’s empty phrase “new direction.” Indeed, what’s new about walls and bluster?

  17. Well, Greg, if we have two nominees who both score low on trustworthiness, something has gone wrong with the primary process. But if one of those two is going to be President, we’d better pick the one whom we can more easily check. Where Trump will lie and lie again, without regard to consequences, Clinton will at least respond to pressure from the Senate, House, and voters. We can demand that Clinton behave. Trump will do whatever he wants, heedless of the voters, the law, the Constitution.

    Thune has shown he won’t exert any pressure to rein Trump in and hold him accountable. Thune capitulates to Trump’s scummery.

  18. mike from iowa

    Trust Drumpf? Any number of experts have said DNC was hacked by at least 2 Russian agencies. George Will,who I detest, says Drumpf is practically in bed with Russian oligarchs.Plus his mob ties. He seemed nice.

  19. Vote Hillary. There’s no other choice. I hope J. Thune loses the next re-election. That’s the best we can hope for.

  20. Bobby Kolbe

    When you are part of the PROBLEM the only way to be part of the SOLUTION is to Retire!

  21. Meanwhile, in reality land, Thune speaks of the “law and order” that his boy Trump blathers about. As number 3 man in leadership of the republican controlled senate, John Thune does speak with hypocrisy. The truth is difficult for him and the rest of the Trump party, but they do not want law and order as it will infringe on their ability to steal from the rest of us. Imagine a fully forced Department of Justice or a fully forced IRS, that would keep judges busy putting Joopsters in the hoosegow while retrieving taxpayer funds that they stole. Of course, when you have a 12 million dollar piggy bank, you can guess where the loot came from.

  22. bearcreekbat

    The observation that both Trump and Hillary have a trustworthy problem, and the suggestion that Bernie was the only honest candidate, is intriguing.

    Hillary’s trustworthy problem is based upon opinion polls of people, rather than anything she has actually said or done improper. If you disregard opinions and focus instead on the trustworthiness of her actual statements PolitiFact fact checking has found Hillary to be more honest than Trump or Bernie. And if you look at her behavior over the years you might find mistakes, but you are hard-pressed to find untrustworthy conduct. Hillary’s untrustworthy reputation is an unearned gift from years of right wing propaganda.

    Meanwhile, Trump’s false statements and his behavior has created his trustworthiness problem, and he has earned his untrustworthy reputation in spades. Now it is reported that the family of the three little girls who sang at one of his campaign rallys are suing him for breach of promise. His factual history of stiffing employees, breaching contracts, lying and scamming have earned him the dishonesty reputation.

  23. Good point, Bear, mirroring something I just said to Daniel on another thread: Trump’s untrustworthiness is an empirically demonstrable, objective fact. Clinton’s untrustworthiness is far more a product of perception than fact.

  24. Trump, has heaped praise on Putin and last week broke from Republican policy by suggesting the US would not automatically come to the aid of Nato allies and saying he would consider recognising Crimea as Russian territory.

    The coordinator of the Washington diplomatic corps for the Republicans in Cleveland was Frank Mermoud, a former state department official involved in business ventures in Ukraine via Cub Energy, a Black Sea-focused oil and gas company of which he is a director. He is also on the board of the US Ukraine Business Council.

    Mermoud has longstanding ties to Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, who in 2010 helped pro-Russia Viktor Yanukovych refashion his image and win a presidential election in Ukraine.

    sources at the convention also told the Guardian that they saw Philip Griffin, a long-time aide to Manafort in Kiev, working with the foreign dignitaries programme.

    “After years of working in the Ukraine for Paul and others, it was surprising to run into Phil working at the convention,” one said.

    The change to the platform on arming Ukraine was condemned even by some Republicans. Senator Rob Portman of Ohio described it as “deeply troubling”.

    In 2008, Trump sold a six-acre oceanfront Palm Beach mansion for $95m – a record deal that netted him $53.6m. The buyer was Russian fertiliser billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev, who was reported in the Panama Papers leaks to have used offshore law firms to hide more than $2bn-worth of art works, including pieces by Picasso, Van Gogh and Leonardo, from his wife in advance of their divorce.

    For his part, Paul Manafort has been closely tied to Ukraine over the past decade, making millions from consulting work. He worked for Rinat Akhmetov, Dmitry Firtash and Oleg Deripaska, three major pro-Russia oligarchs, as an adviser.

    Much of Manafort’s relationship with Firtash was exposed in a 2011 racketeering lawsuit that was later dismissed. It described Manafort as aiding the mogul in moving his wealth out of Ukraine and into overseas assets. Firtash is now under indictment in the US, and Deripaska is banned from entering the country due to ties with organised crime.

    Manafort’s relationship with Deripaska has recently suffered. The mogul is suing Manafort in the Cayman Islands for allegedly disappearing with $19m of his money. Manafort also worked for Yanukovych and helped guide the pro-Russia candidate to victory in the 2010 Ukranian election. Yanukovych was overthrown in 2014 and is now exiled in Russia.

    Another of Trump’s foreign policy advisers, Carter Page, is an investment banker with close links to Gazprom, the Kremlin-controlled gas company, and has long been an outspoken supporter of Putin. He has gone so far as to compare US foreign policy towards Russia under the Obama administration to slavery in the antebellum south.


    Former CIA Chief Smacks Down Donald Trump In Clinton Endorsement

    Michael Morell says Trump’s a self-aggrandizing agent of Vladimir Putin who’s guilty of “routine carelessness with the facts.”