1. It’s Wednesday, April 6, 2016.
3. As is always the case, I derive a certain pleasure from typing the words “Donald Trump lost.”
Unfortunately, after yesterday’s Wisconsin primary, I also have to type the words “Ted Cruz won.”
And frankly, folks, I have a hard time distinguishing which of those statements is worse.
Cruz is a smarmy, right-wing ass. He’s a Trump who has slightly more control over his egomania. His election is unthinkable and, as with Trump, would lead to serious economic and social crises in this country.
If Trump wins New York, and he’s expected to, does he regain the momentum toward a first-ballot nomination at the Republican convention in Cleveland?
I think if we’ve learned anything since last August, it’s not to go for all the head fakes of this campaign. New York, Pennsylvania, California and New Jersey have yet to weigh in. Those are some big states – even if they’re blue in general elections. Just let it play out.
5. On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders is on a roll. But we sort of knew he would be. After Hillary Clinton was declared the winner of the Arizona primary two weeks ago, Sanders won five state caucuses in the West.
That gave him a little momentum going into Wisconsin, which he won big last night. The Clinton campaign can’t minimize the scope of Sanders’ win in a state that Democrats have a good chance of carrying in the general election.
But as with the Republicans, the battleground shifts to big states in the East and California. There are more minority voters, who have so far been Clinton’s strength. There are fewer open primaries, which have helped Sanders in states such as New Hampshire and Wisconsin.
So Clinton has hit a rough patch. But she’s still on track to be the Democratic nominee. If Sanders pulls off the upset in New York, it might change the psychological picture – even if the math favors Clinton.
As with the GOP, Yogi Berra’s immortal words still ring true: It ain’t over ’til it’s over.
6. I’ve been supporting Clinton in this election, but I have always liked Sanders. The difference between them, to me, is borne out in the controversial New York Daily News interview with Sanders.
Please read it. There are too many instances in this interview in which Sanders answers a question by saying variations of “I don’t know.” Does the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill give anyone the authority to break up big banks? Where would an ISIS commander captured by U.S. military forces end up?
I can’t imagine the question that baffles Hillary Clinton. I’ve seen her answer questions about parts of the world most Americans don’t even know exist. And she has an almost equally good grasp of issues in the United States.
I want the smartest President possible, as well as one who cares about what happens to everyone in this country. Right now, that would be Hillary Clinton.
7. The Obama administration is down to its last 9-1/2 months. It’s acting anything but lame.
Yesterday’s thwarting of Pfizer’s attempt to avoid paying U.S. taxes through a “takeover” by Allergan is a great example. The two companies agreed to end the deal after the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service announced new rules that make such so-called “inversions” less tax friendly.
If the merger had proceeded, Pfizer would still have all the trappings of a U.S. company with offices in midtown Manhattan. It would generate most of its income from selling its products at CVS and Walgreens and through whatever prescription plan your healthcare provider uses.
But it would pay a whole lot less of the taxes that it pays now. And that means you would have gotten stuck with more of the bills for making this country run.
You don’t hear Republicans say much about this. I’m sure they and the drugmakers who help fund them are ticked off. But I’d like to see how they would sell opposition to this to an electorate angered by what it perceives as the shafting of working Americans.