Trump secures GOP nomination

Fairfax reports:

Donald Trump has reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for US president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and set the stage for a bitter autumn campaign.

Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count on Thursday (Friday NZ Time) by a small number of the party’s unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the national convention in July.

Among them is Oklahoma GOP chairwoman Pam Pollard.

“I think he has touched a part of our electorate that doesn’t like where our country is,” Pollard said. “I have no problem supporting Mr Trump.”

It takes 1237 delegates to win the Republican nomination. Trump has reached 1238.

With 303 delegates at stake in five state primaries on June 7, Trump will easily pad his total, avoiding a contested convention in Cleveland.

Trump can now go all in on attacking Hillary Clinton and has already begun.

Many pundits thought that Donald Trump couldn’t win the nomination but he has slain 16 professional politicians along the way. Those same pundits are now saying he can’t win the presidency, and while that may look true on paper the one thing Donald Trump has proven is that the rule books don’t matter and the play books from previous elections are all out the window.

It is still difficult for him to win but it appears there is a change afoot.

Frank Luntz from TIME notes:

Voters demand that politicians speak as angrily and as disrespectfully as the voters feel

As a professional focus group moderator, I’m about to make an admission that could cost me clients and even a career: I’ve lost control.

Northeastern moms are mad. California Tree Huggers are ticked off. Born Again Iowans are irate. I’ve led three dozen focus groups in more than a dozen states this year, and trying to moderate and mediate a sensible discussion about politics has become like feeding time at the crocodile enclosure. The moment a contentious topic is introduced, a cacophony of voices spew forward in rapid crescendo, each one louder and more breathless than the last. Within minutes, everyone is yelling, no one is listening and nothing is resolved. The public may despise most members of Congress, but we’ve sure gotten good at emulating them.

Welcome to the election from hell.

Only Donald Trump speaks to those voters. Hillary Clinton speaks past them with her fake accents and her fake cool.

This election is going to be brutal…and spectacular.

– Fairfax, TIME


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  • kehua

    HAhaha tomorrow I start collecting my bets, any ideas on what to do with about 40 Moro Bars, can`t wait for big the kahuna when Trump trumps the Democrats period.

    • Disinfectant

      Send them to Donald so he can give them out to his opponents to sweeten them up.

    • Jafarma

      Send them over to Steven Adams

  • Charley jones

    The Donald can not be any worse that what is in power already.

    • sandalwood789

      Agreed, and there is *no way* he could be worse than Jimmy Carter. Trump would be *far* better than either Hillary Clinton or Sanders would be.

    • SaggyNaggy

      Oh he can. He really can. Just you watch.

  • Graham Pilgrim

    What I find extraordinary, when speaking with friends who believe the world will end if Trump wins the Presidency, is that when I ask which of Trump’s policies worries them, they can’t answer me.

    I was at a social gathering recently of a fairly large group of people aged 50 plus. One individual was quite outspoken with his anti-Trump rhetoric which appeared not to faze any of those gathered, but when I questioned why Trump was so evil, one would have thought I was the antichrist.

    Trump is where he is through the US democratic process. Many seem to think he has been dumped there by the devil. Why is it socially acceptable to deride Trump at a public gathering, but apparently offensive to take a differing point of view?

    • Boondecker

      I’ve had to disown / de-friend my own brother and sister (who are both serious lefties and live in London) and an Aussie cousin on Facebook back in December due to the abuse I was receiving from them for the exactly same thing. According to them the world was ending back then all because of Trump, yet when i took them to task and asked what were the real issues of their gripes they couldn’t ever come up with a single fact, because they didn’t know. They just handed me back more of the crap for sticking up for him.

      I enjoy Facebook much more now as a result. And I click likes and comment on the Donald J Trump Page posts as much and as often as I like.

    • Observer

      Classic, I think the thing is that he has touched on sacred liberal taboos by criticising Muslims and illegal immigration from Mexico. As psychologist Jon Haidt has pointed out, when sacred values get challenged normally rational people throw logic & evidence out the window.

    • jonno1

      I had a similar experience yesterday with a group of seniors, even to the extent of one describing Trump as ‘evil’. I then listed some of Clinton’s misdeeds, eg Whitewater, Benghazi, Bosnia, the Clinton Foundation and of course the email server. A deafening silence ensued!

      Some thought Trump was too far ‘left’, so I suggested that even Sanders is to the right of National (one NP insider quietly agreed). Others claimed he was politically naïve, citing Megyn Kelly and the like, so I pointed out he has made his peace with her and others. Another silence. It’s as if otherwise intelligent people have become hypnotised by the anti-Trump rhetoric without thinking it through.

    • Old Dig

      The anti Trump mob should hook up with the anti John Key mob, they have so much in common.

      • Sailor Sam

        I for one hope that Trump wins, it will cause the leftie luvvies of this world to go into mass hysteria of gloom and doom.
        I actually think he will make agood president, he will not be afraid to confront the bullies like Putin, various Ayatollahs and the Saudi King amongst others.
        Obama has been a total disaster in that regard.
        It seems that KDS here has morphed into TDS in other parts of the world.

      • kayaker

        I wouldn’t put JK and DT in the same camp. We’re up and down to New York and know people who know Trump. They’re concerned. He’s unpredictable and prone to flights of fancy without base or logic – this could have consequences for the US and the world. Their views are that if he gets it, he will have to be tightly managed and monitored. He will be disempowered to the degree that it will frustrate him so much he’s likely to throw the towel in, but not before doing damage.

    • SaggyNaggy

      Well that’s a shame because it’s not hard.

      Trump will start trade wars with China and Mexico, destroying jobs and raising the price of commodities for ordinary Americans. Trump will raise taxes on wealth creators, costing jobs. Trump will print money, causing inflation. He will try to default on debt, collapsing the value of the dollar. He will build that stupid wall, costing billions of dollars in tax money. He will not reform social security or medicare, the two biggest expenses of the federal government. He will increase crony capitalism. He will drive up costs for all Americans by reneging on trade agreements. He will appoint crony judges to the Supreme Court, not originalist conservatives. He won’t work with congress, except to do deals with Democrats.

      Unlike Hillary, who is at least smart enough to avoid this crap, Trump will do real damage. He will destroy the United States and the global economy as we know it. Everyone will suffer.

      History is littered with democratically elected people who destroyed their countries. Trump is the latest in a long line. People forget that Hitler got the most votes in Germany too.

      Is that good enough for ya? I haven’t even started. That’s just a sampler.. It’s offensive to take your view because it insults the intelligence of thinking human beings.

      • BMSKiwi

        The Trump people aren’t interested in reasoning, but if they were, this analysis is too simplistic to be real use.

        1) Trade wars: US is in extraordinarily strong bargaining position, because trade is just a little over one fifth of the their economy, whereas US trade is the entire development model of China and Mexico. The US economy is also extremely dynamic (it responds to changes very quickly, and could probably absorb the complete termination of foreign trade altogether without a massive drop in living standards).
        2) Raise taxes on wealth creators: you’re saying he’ll raise taxes more than Clinton?
        3) Where’s your source that Trump will print money?
        4) …and default on debt?
        5) The wall is brilliant. It does not matter whether it is actually impassible; it is all about the message. I think Trump understands messaging very well. For the effect of messaging on illegal immigration, see Australia’s ‘stop the boats’ vs Germany’s ‘we can do it’.
        6) Your remaining points are ‘argument clinic’ stuff. They are statements of political faith not fact and attempting to refute them is pointless. (also, has already published supreme court prefences list, very properly conservative they are too)

        The system needs a shakup, and Trump’s the man to do it

        • SaggyNaggy

          1. It’s not about a “bargaining position”, but what it will cost the consumer at the end of it. You’re nuts if you think America can be autarkist without a massive drop in living standards. If you’re paying twice as much for consumer goods, that’s a halving of living standards. As for your contention that trade is “one fifth” of the US economy, I’m wondering what you think the other four fifths is?! That’s like telling us that only a fifth of your household budget is “buying things”.

          2. Yes Trump will raise taxes more than Clinton. Clinton will not have the votes in congress to raise taxes, but Trump will co-opt enough Republicans to do a deal with the Democrats and get it done. And Trump will have to raise taxes, since he won’t reform entitlements, and he is going to build that ridiculous wall..

          3&4 – Trump’s statements on this are well documented. He has explicitly stated that he wants to negotiate writedowns and print money to lower US national debt.

          5. Oh, so the wall is “brilliant”, because it makes for a good message, even though the cost of it will be astronomical, and it won’t actually achieve anything. Thanks for that. Great logic there.

          Are you a “Trump person”? You seem to have drunk the Kool Aid too. Pretty much everything that Americans buy comes from China or Mexico. Much of the produce and food products that Americans buy in their supermarkets comes from Mexico. What are people supposed to eat in a trade war?! I don’t think people really appreciate how much a Trump “shakeup” is going to affect daily American lives, and the subsequent flow-on effect that will have for economies like New Zealand’s too.

          • BMSKiwi

            Saggy, I’m not a “Trump person”, but I do understand economics, and most warnings about a Trump presidency are quite shrill and inaccurate. I understand it can be tempting to climb on that bandwagon, but I also respect the views of a huge number of Americans who think that their politics and their relationships with the rest of the world needs a major shift.

            1) On trade, it’s generally understood with statistics like this that ‘trade’ refers to foreign trade. What this means is that – contrary to your seat-of-the-pants observations – about 80% of the US economy consists of internal transactions, beyond the reach of customs officials. The US is unique in this regard. Most developed economies are closer to half-and-half.

            Of course, a trade war would lower living standards, but by less than it would anywhere else. The process of import substitution would occur much, much faster than in, for instance, Mexico. And it sounds like you need to read up on US food production.

            That said, the goal is not a trade war per se – the goal is to leverage these unique advantages to secure concessions from nations such as China, whose communist government has benefited from an enormous trade surplus with the States for 30 years, largely by manipulating their currency. I don’t begrudge Trump this at all.

            2) I’m not at all certain that Trump won’t reform entitlements. I suspect he has a businessman’s nose for wasteful spending and a hard enough hard nose to end it – but we’ll leave that for the argument clinic. I would much rather he raised taxes (to pay for things now) than raised debt (the Obama-Bush model, to pay for things later).

            3) A negotiated writedown is not a default. If Trump could pull that off, good luck to him. The US needs to cut its government debt already. If you don’t understand this, then you come from another wing of politics and should probably avoid WhaleOil.

            As to printing money, there is quite a difference between clickbait headlines and Trump’s factually correct statements. I’m sure you are aware the president does not control the policies of the Federal Reserve.

            4) With the wall, as with so much else in life, the message is integral to the effect. Surely you can see that? So to say “it won’t actually achieve anything” is absurd. There is more than one way to skin a cat.

            In short, I respect your views but you are a bit long on hype and a bit short on facts. Which is the exact point made by the original post.

    • kereru

      Views differing from the fashionable narrative-du-jour are simply not acceptable to those who are so quick to preach tolerance. I’ve noticed that most know very little about the actual issues at stake – it’s more on the level of, ‘Can’t stand him’ or ‘What’s with the hair? I imagine that their views are shaped by TV News 3-second soundbites as there is little or no in-depth, balanced, investigative reporting from the MSM these days.

      People seem to underestimate the ‘common touch’, the guy who reflects what the ordinary Joe & Jane thinks and feels, but have been silenced into conforming by the Marxist Left for many years. Finally, here’s a figure who doesn’t give a damn for political correctness, stands up and says what he thinks, and strikes a chord with his ability to gauge public pent-up anger and frustration with the Clinton/Obama years of deceit and decline. The other side has held sway for too long. Let’s hope that Trump will follow through and keep his promises if/when elected.

  • Ross15

    Read earlier he has suggested a debate with Bernie Sanders ( and Bernie has accepted) Trump says it should be a charity fund raiser (for a woman’s charity he suggests !!!)
    What great “slap in the face” for Clinton.
    Trump is clever and I’m looking forward to more “out of left field” ideas in coming months.

    • Crowgirl

      Clinton is a fool if she lets these 2 get together, find common ground and gang up on her together.

      • Boondecker

        I think that’s Trump’s aim. And, as diametrically opposed to Trump as he is politically, Bernie appears only too willing to help on that front.

      • Ross15

        I don’t think she’ll have any say in the matter if it proceeds.

        • Crowgirl

          I hope it does – I would very much like to watch that.

    • Barnacles2

      Ha and what chance Donald selects Bernie as his running mate. That will really throw the balance out.

  • Don O’Brien

    Some forms of entertainment have to be paid for like a DVD or a sports match. I am looking forward to the Presidential election as a long stretch of free entertainment.

  • LesleyNZ

    I was in Fiji recently and was invited to a friend’s brother’s 50th birthday party – Indian and Bollywood style. One of the sisters lives in California and has lived there for the past 21 years. She and her husband have never bothered to vote in the 21 years they have lived in California – but this time they are voting. They are on fire and are voting for Donald Trump. Donald has stirred and woken many who in the past have not bothered to vote. These voters relate to him – they love him. They don’t care about his transgressions. They just say he is human and so what. It may well be that Donald Trump does become the President of the United States. I reckon we are in for a very interesting, exciting, funny and entertaining Presidential race.

  • cod

    I have listened to a few of his speeches at rallies and he does have a unique way of orating to an audience, he is very comfortable and seems to invite people in very well. The proof of the pudding of course is that he has got more votes than any other republican nominee in history. The media don’t like him, of course, because he is not bound by the usual strictures, and speaks his mind; they cannot understand why their negative reporting is having the reverse effect from what was intended. It is part of a growing number of elections that are falling outside of the bell curve, UK Conservatives, NZ national and now US presidential nominee. The media and forecasters are having a rough time and it will only get rougher as the populace finally find people to which they can cleave.

    • Ross15

      Keep an eye on the Aussie election for similar things to happen, cod. I think Turnbull is going get a rough ride.

  • symgardiner

    I’ll go on a limb and say Trump will win.
    Hillary will get the Democratic nomination but it will be nasty. The Sanders faction will go feral when they lose and Hillary will not be able to unite the Democrats behind her. She will be too proud to offer Sanders the VP or anything substantial like Obama did for her.