Trumpier Than Trump …

There have been some fairly bizarre things happening in U.S. politics since the election of Donald Trump in November 2016, wouldn’t you agree?  Some really off-the-wall candidates have shown up on special election ballots but, for the most part, common sense has reigned at the polls.  But this morning’s New York Times headline had even the jaded Filosofa scratching her head and saying, “Huh?”  (I’m not all that sharp when I first wake up) 

At McConnell’s Urging, Trump Asks West Virginians Not to Vote for Don Blankenship

Don Blankenship has touted himself as being “Trumpier than Trump”.  He just spent a year in prison.  He is a former coal baron.  One of his campaign ads claims, “We don’t need to investigate our president. We need to arrest Hillary”.  Doesn’t it seem that he would be Trump’s candidate of choice?  And yet, Trump tweeted …

“To the great people of West Virginia we have, together, a really great chance to keep making a big difference. Problem is, Don Blankenship, currently running for Senate, can’t win the General Election in your State…No way! Remember Alabama. Vote Rep. Jenkins or A.G. Morrisey!” — 6:53 AM – May 7, 2018

What was I missing?  And to make the situation even more bizarre, once I found what I was missing, I found myself rooting for Mr. Blankenship to win the Republican primary tomorrow!!!   Now, I hear some of you saying, “Girl … have you gone and lost what few marbles you had left???”  Well, let me explain …

There is much to hate about Blankenship, and as I wrote in my April 24th post  he has been referred to as the “most hated man in West Virginia” and the “next Roy Moore”.  And taken together, those two things explain why not only Trump, but the entire GOP do not want to see Blankenship win the primary.  Because he likely cannot win the November election!  And once you realize that, you see why I am rooting for him, for his win would likely serve to hand the senate seat to incumbent Joe Manchin, a democrat.

Now, let me make it even more interesting.  Blankenship, supposedly the most hated man in the state, is actually doing quite well in the polls!  I think this may be a case of what I referred to before as “push … and push back”.  The West Virginia GOP has been running a series of ads like the one below, against Blankenship.Blankenship-1Blankenship is still on probation after serving a year in prison for his role in a mine accident that killed 29 miners in 2010.  As CEO of the Upper Big Branch (UBB) mine, Blankenship ordered the company to delay or stop various safety improvements in 2008, a move that was ultimately proven to have contributed to the mine accident, and Blankenship was convicted of conspiring to violate mine safety standards.  One wouldn’t think that the citizens of West Virginia, a state whose economy relies heavily on coal mining, would even consider this man to represent them in the U.S. Senate, right?

But, as Politico reported last week, Blankenship “is surging ahead”.  Even Don Trump, Jr. got in on the act, tweeting …

“I hate to lose. So I’m gonna go out on a limb here and ask the people of West Virginia to make a wise decision and reject Blankenship! No more fumbles like Alabama. We need to win in November. #wv #wvpol” — 3:44 PM – May 3, 2018

Blankenship wasn’t too upset about it, though, and didn’t blame Trump …

“As some have said I am Trumpier than Trump, and this morning proves it. The President is a very busy man and he doesn’t know me, and he doesn’t know how flawed my two main opponents are in this primary. The establishment is misinforming him because they do not want me to be in the U.S. Senate and promote the President’s agenda. West Virginia voters should remember that my enemies are Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and my opponents would not even be running as Republicans had I not resurrected the Republican Party in West Virginia.”

Ahhhh … the “establishment” is feeding Trump lies, and this man is single-handedly responsible for the GOP’s existence in West Virginia, eh?  I wonder if he’s friends with Alex Jones? An analysis by the New York Times claims that …

“The emergence of a former coal boss with a criminal record as a potential Senate nominee seems partly an expression of many West Virginia voters’ desire to poke a thumb in the eye of the Washington establishment, Republicans very much included.”

My mother used to have an expression that I think fits well here:  Cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face.

My current favourite comedian, John Oliver, sums it all up nicely for us

Trump won West Virginia in 2016, presumably based on his promise to “end the war on coal”, and remains popular there today.  And in truth, Blankenship is at least as “Trumpy” as Trump.  Keep an eye on this one, folks.  And remember that this is no longer the world of sanity we once thought it was.

15 thoughts on “Trumpier Than Trump …

  1. Dear Jill,

    The good news is that Mr. Blankenship lost his bid. Part of me thinks that the republican party deserved him but if he actually had won, there would have been that slim possibility that he could have squeaked into the US Senate where there are enough GOP fools.

    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, I was surprised and pleased to see him lose. In a way, I wanted him to win the primary, as I thought it would give the democrat the better chance, but … as you say, there was always that possibility he would have won in the general election, and that would have been intolerable! Hugs!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think you need to do some research and find out when we crossed over to this alternate universe because I want to go home. And why in heaven’s name are they still in love with Trump there? He hasn’t done a thing for coal mining and isn’t likely to do so

    Liked by 1 person

    • There is some dispute about the date. Was it June 16th, 2015 when Trump announced his candidacy and gave that ugly speech where he called Mexicans criminals and rapists? Or was it November 8th, 2016 when Trump was actually elected? Or was it January 20th, 2017, the day of the inauguration. Either way, I’m with you … I want my life back! I keep hoping to wake up one morning to find that it was all a bad dream and that Obama is still president.

      You have asked the question that keeps me awake nights, my friend. If I ever figure it out, you’ll be among the first to know. No, he cannot do much for coal mining jobs, for the coal industry is a dinosaur. Any gains he makes for them will be very, very short-lived.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jill, it is puzzling, but here are a few observations.
    – Blankenship went to prison for as less a crime they could convict him, violation get safety standards. What he was not get convicted of but had culpability is a mine disaster that killed 29 workers because if a pattern of safety violations.
    – What Trump should have said is this man should not be elected at all, not that he should not win the primary because he cannot win. The same thing should have been said about Roy Moore.
    I hope he does not win, as you never know what might happen and this man does not belong there. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I thought, even as I was writing it that I should be careful what I wish for. Logically, if he wins the primary, then Manchin should be a shoo-in. But, I keep forgetting that logic is no longer applicable when it comes to our elections. And, since Trump has such great popularity in WVa, it is likely that the republican candidate has a better-than-average chance. The main thing helping Manchin is likely to be the fact that he is the incumbent.


  4. That was a pretty good segment on John Oliver’s show last night. I wonder if Trump would support Blankenship if there hadn’t been an accident at his mine. Listening to Blankenship talk is almost like hearing Trump speak. And wouldn’t it be hypocritical of Trump to not support the coal mine owner, one of the industries he promised he would bring back during his campaign?

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m fairly certain that Trump would love to support Blankenship, but the GOP has made it clear to him that winning the seat is paramount, and Blankenship is the least likely of the 3 republicans running to beat Manchin. I did love the Oliver clip!


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