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Writer’s Lounge – Senator Joe Manchin, Cal Thomas, Matt Schlapp And CPAC


We noted in the last edition of Writer’s Lounge, that Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), voting in favor of conviction at the Senate Impeachment trial, surprised many D.C. politicos, given the fact that Manchin, like Mitt Romney in Utah and Doug Jones, Senator from Alabama, was bucking the prevailing sentiment in the state he represents.

Trump was led to believe that Manchin would be a defector from the Democrat side of the Senate. Since the vote, Trump has lashed out in every direction, with the exception of the invertebrates that inhabit the entire GOP, with the single outlier of Romney. Romney was Trump’s first target, but it was inevitable that Trump would get around to Manchin.

On Friday, Trump, in a tweet, said he was “surprised and disappointed” by Manchin’s  votes on the two articles of impeachment.  Trump added that he (Trump), “no president has done more for the great people of West Virginia than me.” 

He went on to accuse Manchin of being a puppet, saying, “I was told by many that Manchin is just a puppet for Schumer and Pelosi, and that’s all he is.”

Trump still couldn’t move on and persisted with his bitter twitter habit, employing a bit of insinuation, generally to the people in West Virginia, that they are not the brightest bulbs in the ceiling and that their Senator is incapable of discerning Trump’s behavior correctly.

Trump tweet directed against West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin

Trump loves “poorly educated voters”, when they benefit him politically, but implicit in his attitude is a (false) sense of superiority. Odd that Trump voters are suspicious of “elites”, when the president they elected, identifies with elites and views his voters as rubes.

Manchin didn’t take any of it lying down, but in this interview with White House correspondent, Halle Jackson      of MSNBC, said that “the people want a mature adult and that’s what the president should be.”


The problem, of course, is that the president is not a “mature adult”. He’s not anything close and he demonstrates that on essentially a minute to minute basis.

But Trump is also a vindictive immature person and that adds a very potent layer of danger to his childish words and actions. And the GOP, through their fecklessness, have lost control of him – completely. 

by Richard Cameron


Senator Susan Collins of Maine has made some weak comments following her ratification of Trump’s crimes to the effect that she believes he will take away a lesson from his experience. Trump exposed her for the corrupt fool she is, by immediately following up with a belligerent speech in the White House, signaling a campaign of retaliation.

And while Collins may “regret” Trump’s actions, such as the firing of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, Vindman’s brother and Ambassador Sondland – she can’t escape her complicity in what Trump has done and obviously, what he will continue to do. On the other hand, Joe Manchin will need no apologies. 

photo of Trump angry in his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast

Trump’s behavior at the National Prayer Breakfast, is still resonating and some of the disapproval is coming from people who ordinarily would be allies to Trump’s political agenda. 

One such individual, who has, up until now, either tolerated Trump, or actively supported his agenda, is Cal Thomas, longtime Republican conservative columnist. Thomas has been openly uncomfortable about Trump’s mode of behavior. 

Late last year, Thomas said of the president, “Last week at a rally in Minnesota, the president said Barack Obama chose Joe Biden as his running mate in 2008, because “Biden understood how to kiss Barack Obama’s ass.” That gets his mostly white rally-goers energized, but what effect does it have on the rest of the country?”

Thomas, felt it incumbent to respond to Trump’s performance at the National Prayer Breakfast, saying:

One could tell where things were headed when President Trump arrived later than most other presidents and held up two newspapers with the headline “Acquitted,” a reference to the vote by the GOP majority in the Senate the day before, which refused to convict him of articles of impeachment written by the Democratic majority in the House. The president then shook hands with only half of those at the head table, apparently because House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was sitting on the other side of the podium.  Perhaps it is time to suspend this annual event, or to hold it without this president attending if he can’t accept the nonpartisan theme that has been its tradition for nearly seven decades. 

“or to hold it without this president.” Cal Thomas and I don’t agree on much of anything. We certainly are of like mind on that. 

by Richard Cameron


In this Pulitzer Prize winning photo by John Filo, Mary Ann Vecchio kneels over a student, 20 year old Jeffrey Miller, after Miller was shot in the head by an Ohio National Guardsman at Kent State University in 1970.
In this Pulitzer Prize winning photo by John Filo, Mary Ann Vecchio kneels over a student, 20 year old Jeffrey Miller, after Miller was shot in the head by an Ohio National Guardsman at Kent State University in 1970.

As yet another example of the sort of unbridled sentiment Donald Trump has inspired, Dan Adamini, an influential leader in the Michigan Republican Party, tweeted last week that campus protesters that oppose Trump and his conservative media surrogates, should be dealt with in similar manner as the protesters were handled in 1970 at Kent State University in Ohio.

In other words, they should be met with deadly violence.  Marquette County GOP official Dan Adamini said in the tweet, that, “Violent protesters who shut down free speech? Time for another Kent State perhaps. One bullet stops a lot of thuggery.” Adamini reinforced it in a Facebook post, adding, “I’m thinking that another Kent State might be the only solution…They do it because they know there are no consequences yet.” 

The state GOP has repudiated Adamini’s statements. Detroit News reported that Michigan Republican Party spokeswoman Sarah Anderson called the posts “inappropriate” and that “He was speaking for himself and not on behalf of the Michigan Republican Party,”.  Adamini, attempted to apologize, calling his tweet “horribly worded”, but despite that retraction, later arrived at the conclusion that resigning from his position, was preferable to being expelled. 

This is clearly a preview of harbingers of violence against those perceived as enemies of Trump.

Matt Schlapp, chairman of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) told “Full Court Press” host and former Fox News contributor, Greta Van Susteren, regarding the organizations disinvitation of Utah Senator Mitt Romney, “We won’t credential him as a conservative. I suppose if he wants to come as a non-conservative and debate an issue with us, maybe in the future we would have him come. This year, I’d actually be afraid for his physical safety, people are so mad at him.”

It’s clear that Schlapp believes security at the convention would not be adequate to stave off a violent attack on Romney.

At some point, a person or persons, perceived to be in opposition to Donald Trump, will be the victim of severe injury or a fatal attack.

Trump has not made any attempt to tamp down the emotions of his supporters, but in truth, has turned up the heat. It really is a feature of his presidency and even going back to his campaign for the presidency. This is the man who said in 2016,                                                                                                                                       

 “Seriously, OK? Just knock the hell — I promise you, I will pay for the legal fees. I promise. I promise. They won’t be so much, because the courts agree with us too — what’s going on in this country.”

by Richard Cameron


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