Kid Rock Tells Howard Stern If He’s Running for Senate

For several months, Kid Rock has teased the possibility that he would jump into the race for the Senate seat in his (and my) home state of Michigan. A successful bid for for the Republican nomination would set him against three-term, incumbent Democrat Debbie Stabenow. The potential that the GOP would double down on the decision to nominate unpolished, tell-it-like-it-is candidates with celebrity creds in place of actual governing experience has been more likely than that he would actually run, despite performances to the contrary at his shows and hints dropped via Twitter all summer long.

But again, how many times did Donald Trump flirt with running for president before his decision to actually do it in 2016? He floated the idea in four straight decades without a serious run, enough that many observers didn’t take him seriously until he actually became a candidate. On top of that, as The Daily Beast reported, Rock himself claims that Trump-backer Steve Bannon encouraged him to run. If Bannon seriously just wants to watch the world burn, the opinionated “Bawitdaba” singer with absolutely zero political knowledge or experience is an ideal pick. So it isn’t insane for those analysts who were outflanked — by Trump’s successful run — in attempting to predicting what was possible to assume that Rock might just be serious.

Polls have showed Rock trailing Stabenow significantly in polls despite his platinum-sales-level name recognition — aside from two polls, one solid one from the Trafalgar Group and one from “Delphi Analytica” of questionable legitimacy. Of course, polls often missed the mark on Trump’s primary and election day performance as well, so they wouldn’t seal the deal. I’m not sure if it would be worse to nominate him if he did have a chance in the general than if he didn’t.

Those of us not looking to burn it all down can breathe a collective sigh of relief: Kid Rock is not running for Senate.

On Howard Stern’s show this morning, Rock told the shock jock host that the tease was just that, in a statement of vocabulistic acuity typical of both Stern’s guests and Rock himself:

F— no, I’m not running for Senate. Are you kidding me? Who couldn’t figure that out? I’m releasing a new album. I’m going on tour too. Are you f—ing sh–ing me?

He also managed to call The New York Timesa little bit gay,” which no doubt delights anyone otherwise disappointed that they won’t be able to roll with Rock (electorally) next year.

Rather than punch the ticket for Senator Kid Rock in November of 2018, you can pick up his new album in November of 2017. That is as close as I will ever get to promoting his music — despite the fact that some of his headbangers are a guilty pleasure of mine. Promoting the new album and the accompanying tour was perhaps his aim. Rock explained that “even people in his circle who were ‘in on the joke’ started to take it seriously,” according to the Detroit Free Press. “‘No, we’re not doing it,’ he said he’d tell them, ‘but let’s roll with it for a while.’

The game must come to an end eventually it seems. Sadly, not all frightening campaign prospects follow that same law. Michigan Republicans interested in holding on to some small semblance of sanity in the party can loosen their grip on their chairs as they read this. Kid Rock is not running for Senate.

More Storytelling Ads Like This From GOP Candidates, Please

One race to keep on your radar for next year–Election Cycle 2018– is the U.S. Senate race in Michigan. The seat is currently occupied by Democrat Debbie Stabenow. Several people have expressed interest in running against her on the GOP side. Rocker and Trump supporter Kid Rock has teased interest but has yet to announce.

But this ad from businessman and West Point graduate John James, who declared yesterday his intention to seek the office, is worthy of your consideration. The ad is called “Service”:

Although we don’t know this prospective candidate’s background yet, it appears he has conservative credentials to tout. He runs James Group International in Detroit, Michigan, with his father and brother. The company specializes in supply chains and logistics. Since James joined in 2012, he says the company added 100 jobs and grown annual revenues from $35 million to $137 million.

James, 36, is a resident of Farmington Hills and is a self-described “conservative Republican” per Detroit News. In that same interview with the prominent state paper, James said he’ll be the best candidate to challenge Stabenow given his experience in business and in service to the U.S. Army:

“I believe that we all want what’s best for Michigan, but given my experience creating jobs and my experience defending the country, I am the best candidate in the Republican Party and the best shot we have to defeat Debbie Stabenow,” James said.

The article also alludes to James’ military background. He graduated from West Point in 2004 and went to serve in Iraq in 2007 for Operation Iraqi Freedom, where he was a Ranger-qualified officer. He flew Apache helicopters and led two platoons.

It is also reported that James’ business partner and own father –a prominent Detroit businessman–donated $1,500 to Stabenow’s re-election bid in 2012.

In spite of his father’s conflicting views, James noted in that same interview he’s been a Republican since age 16 and a conservative his whole life. He also describes himself in the ad and in the interview as “pro-life,” “pro-business,” and “pro-Second Amendment.”

Moreover, James believes there should be more combat veterans serving in office. He added, “There’s not enough combat veterans in government “who understand the consequences of failed policies.”

Although James is a political newcomer, he has been previously aligned with Michigan Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, who launched his 2014 re-election campaign bid at James’ company in Detroit.  Earlier this year, Snyder appointed the West Point graduate to the Michigan Council on Future Mobility.

Thanks to his ad, our curiosity has certainly peaked! We at The Resurgent will keep a close eye on this race.

 

Caitlyn Jenner Considering Senate Run

It seems Donald Trump’s ascendancy to the White House has opened the floodgates of media stars who believe they have a serious shot at statesmanship. On the heels of Kid Rock’s announcement that he wants to run for office in Michigan, Caitlyn Jenner has publicly stated she is seriously mulling a Senate bid in California.

Jenner spoke to John Catsimatidis, who hosts a New York-based radio show, about her future roles in politics and transgender activism.

“I have considered it. I like the political side of it,” Jenner stated to Catsimatidis regarding a Senate run. “The political side of it has always been very intriguing to me. Over the next six months or so, I gotta find out where I can do a better job. Can I do a better job from the outside? Kind of working the perimeter of the political scene, being open to talking to anybody? Or are you better from the inside, and we are in the process of determining that,” she stated.

This isn’t the first time the former Olympic athlete has entertained the idea of getting into politics. She told Don Lemon back in April she would seriously look into it.

If she were to really run (and run in the upcoming election cycle), Jenner would likely face off against Sen. Dianne Feinstein. The incumbent Democrat’s term ends in 2018. However, the 84-year-old senator has not yet decided if she will run for re-election.

While both lifelong Republican stars in their own right, Kid Rock’s possible entrance into Michigan politics would be nothing like Jenner’s. Kid Rock, aka Robert Ritchie, continually praised Trump during the election. He would be running in a state that voted for the president in 2016 – possibly giving him a base of support. Rock’s boisterous, yet unapologetic, lifestyle makes him a bit of a mini-Trump himself and could appeal to Trump voters.

Jenner’s presence in conservative circles is a bit of a paradox. While Democrats have embraced extreme transgender ideology (public funding for sex transitions and belief in unlimited number of genders), most GOP members have been reluctant to do so. Jenner, despite her public adoration for the Second Amendment and the Constitution, would likely struggle to appeal to Republican constituents because of her stature as a trans woman. She voted for Trump and has mostly been supportive of him, but strays on the topic of LGBT rights. Jenner was very critical of the president’s decision to end an Obama-era rule that allowed trans students to use restrooms of their chosen gender.

Adding to all of this – California is toxic territory for GOP candidates.

This may seem like a joke, but Democratic leadership is taking this all very seriously. In an email blast to supporters, Sen. Elizabeth Warren cautioned that Trump was originally thought to be kidding about his presidential ambitions. The Massachusetts liberal implored her followers to take Kid Rock’s announcement with earnestness, and she even linked to a fundraising page for Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow – Rock’s would-be Democrat opponent.

Side note: has anyone been keeping track of the newly created campaign committee to elect Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson? “Run The Rock 2020” was registered by a political consultant in West Virginia who reportedly wants to “Make America Rock Again.”

Kid Rock: I Wanna Be A Senator, Baby

Oh, boy!  If you thought Election 2016 was a spectacle, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.  Get a load of what just came outta Michigan:

And lest there be any confusion:

Who says politics is boring?

Kid Rock, also known as Robert Ritchie (but don’t call him that), was an avid supporter of Donald Trump, calling the real estate mogul turned politician’s campaign “entertaining as sh*t,” and expressing hopes that Trump would run government more like a business.  But he has also described himself as a libertarian, saying, “I don’t like the hardcore views on either side and I’m not in bed with anybody. . .but I’m a firm believer you have to pick a side. I can’t be playing the middle.”

If Rock really does take the plunge, he’ll presumably be running as a Republican in a mostly Democrat state, taking on incumbent Debbie Stabenow, who has held the seat for the last seventeen years.  Then again, Michigan did flip for Trump last year, which suggests that maybe the state could be ripe for electing another Republican.  Rock’s campaign would most certainly be unconventional, and with the public souring on politics-as-usual it might just be his moment.

Hey, Kid–if this works out, maybe you could get The Nuge to bump off Gary Peters in 2020.  Rock and roll, baby!

Pollsters Look For Why They Went Wrong in 2016

 

 

A group of pollsters has conducted a postmortem of 2016 election polling to try to determine why so many of the nation’s pollsters and political analysts, including those of us at The Resurgent, got it wrong. The resulting study, released by the American Association for Public Opinion Research, “found that the biggest culprit was state-level polling underestimating the level of Trump’s support, most importantly in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin,” observes Business Insider in a classic understatement.

No kidding.

National polls showed Hillary Clinton with an average lead of about three-points, which was very close to the actual popular vote result which Clinton won by two points. The polls were less accurate at the state level, where they showed a tight race, but still pointed to a Clinton victory.

The three perennially blue states in the upper Midwest flipped to Trump and enabled his path to 270 electoral votes. The fundamental question is why pollsters underestimated Trump’s support in these states. On that issue, the analysis found three main factors that likely caused polls to be off in those states.

A major factor was that a large segment of voters waited until the last week before the election to make their decision. In Florida, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, those late-deciding voters broke decisively for Donald Trump. In Wisconsin, they chose Trump by a 30-point margin. The margin for Trump among these voters was 17 points in Pennsylvania and Florida.

A second major factor was that many polls included too many college graduates in their samples and their assumptions about the electorate. “Voters with higher education levels were more likely to support Clinton,” the report said. “Furthermore, recent studies are clear that people with more formal education are significantly more likely to participate in surveys than those with less education.”

The third factor was that many Trump voters did not admit to preferring Trump in pre-election polling. There had been speculation about reluctance of Trump supporters to admit their preference to pollsters, the so-called “Shy Trump effect,” but the report notes that this effect could also be attributed to late-deciding voters.

Two additional factors were also considered to be less compelling reasons for the polling problems. The report notes that in 2016, turnout grew more in Republican counties than in Democrat counties when compared to 2012. This could have caused an overcounting of Democrat demographics while underestimating Republican support. The report also notes that Donald Trump’s name appeared above Hillary Clinton’s on the actual ballot while polls tended to randomize the order of the candidates. The report considers these effects to be insignificant.

Regarding the pre-election forecasts that Clinton was a shoo-in, the report notes that polling and forecasting are two different things. “Pollsters and astute poll reporters are often careful to describe their findings as a snapshot in time, measuring public opinion when they are fielded,” the report notes. “Forecasting models do something different – they attempt to predict a future event. As the 2016 election proved, that can be a fraught exercise, and the net benefit to the country is unclear.”

Polls are already history when they are published. The measure public opinion on the dates that they are conducted, they do not predict future events. Polling results and trends can be used by forecasters to make predictions, but, if public opinion is changing rapidly, as it did in 2016 with FBI Director Comey’s eleventh hour letter to Congress, then polling is less effective as a forecasting tool.

The analysis also found that there is no consistent partisan bias in recent US polling. While polling underestimated support for Trump last year, the reverse has been true in other recent elections. “Whether the polls tend to miss in the Republican direction or the Democratic direction is tantamount to a coin flip,” said the report.

In 2012, late-breaking support for Barack Obama in the wake of Hurricane Sandy and the Obama bromance with Chris Christie derailed what many thought would be a win for Mitt Romney. In 2004, early exit polling showed that John Kerry would defeat incumbent George W. Bush. When all the votes were counted, Bush won a convincing victory.

Looking back at the 2016 polls, which are still available on Real Clear Politics, the signs were there. Pennsylvania showed a 1.9-point lead for Clinton, which was well within the margin of error of most polls. The latest poll before the election gave Trump a one-point lead. In Michigan, the average showed Clinton up by 3.4 points, still within the margin of error, while the last poll showed Trump with a two-point lead. Wisconsin polling was farther off, showing a 6.5-point lead for Clinton. Trump did not lead in any Wisconsin polls, but won all three states by less than one point on Election Day.

The bottom line for political observers is that polling is not an exact science. This is particularly true in a country that is as closely divided as the United States is today. While polls are useful to give a snapshot of public opinion, they can’t be expected to accurately predict an election winner in a tight race where poll results are within the margin of error.

In retrospect, the fact that polls were as tight as they were going into the final week before the election should have been a red flag for Clinton supporters. For an opponent who was as unpopular as Donald Trump to be within the margin of error of the Democrat candidate in what was almost universally assumed to be a coronation more than an election indicated serious problems with the Clinton campaign.

The surge of Trump voters in the final week may be partially due to the continuing dribbles of scandal from the hacked emails and Director Comey’s decision to reopen the investigation a week before the election, but it also indicates a more fundamental problem for the Democrats. Many of these late Trump voters undoubtedly went for Trump because Democrat messaging failed to convince them that Hillary would improve their own lives and finances.

When Fake Recounts Hurt The Real Ones

Jill Stein’s fake recount effort is underway in Wisconsin, costing taxpayers millions of dollars. Michigan’s recount could cost another $4 million, money which was raised by Stein’s fundraising blitz. The only point of these recounts is to undermine the public’s faith in these elections, where no evidence or hint of irregularities was found.

In North Carolina, there were actual irregularities. Massive irregularities to the tune of 90,000 ballots added at the last minute in heavily-Democratic Durham County, which quite literally transformed incumbent Republican Gov. Pat McCrory’s victory into a defeat by Democratic challenger Roy Cooper.

Durham County reported computer problems early on election day. The county Board of Elections took its electronic voting system offline after problems “popped up” at several precincts. The state went to Donald Trump in the presidential election, but the governor’s race was too close to call well into the night and next morning.

McCrory has never conceded the race, and has continually requested a statewide recount, then a recount in only the counties affected by the software problems. His protests were ignored and dismissed.

It took an officially filed request by a voter in Durham County, along with a separately filed lawsuit, to get the state Board of Elections to move, in a race where the two candidates were separated by 0.1 percent, and obvious, glaring problems were found. Finally, McCrory will get his recount, but only of the 94,000 “last minute” ballots in Durham County.

“What harm would it do to scan these votes and count them so no that one campaign is going to think why wouldn’t they count those votes?” election board member James Baker, a Republican, asked at the hearing.

But Democrats keep complaining about the cost of the recount.

“It is wrong that Governor McCrory continues to waste taxpayer money with false accusations and attempts to delay and that the Republican controlled Board of Elections did not follow the law,” [Cooper campaign manager Trey] Nix said in a statement. “However, Roy Cooper’s lead has grown to over 10,000 votes and after a partial recount of 6 precincts in one county, the outcome of the election will be the same.”

So to Democrats, it’s okay to recount two entire states where no irregularities were found, and the chance of the result being changed is only slightly more than an extinction-level event, at a cost of millions. But it’s a waste of taxpayer money to recount even one county that singlehandedly changed the result of a close race with a dump of 94,000 ballots.

This is why fake recounts hurt. They legitimatize conspiracy theories and delegitimize real problems.

Here’s Why the Democrats Are Pushing an Expensive, Doomed to Fail, Recall

In Pennsylvania, because the Green Party missed the state deadline for a recount, they are going to selected counties for recounts.

In Wisconsin, they have to fork over $3.5 million today to make a recount happen. They are pushing in Michigan as well.

In Pennsylvania, Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton by 75,000 votes, which is around 30,000 more than Jill Stein got altogether. There is no way Jill Stein could find enough votes to get herself an electoral college vote and there is no realistic way that there would be enough votes to throw a state to Hillary Clinton.

On top of that, if any one of these states goes for Trump, he wins. So why do it?

First, it is to delegitimize the process. The Democrats want to cast enough doubt on the election that their base, who prides itself on being smarter than the right, will spin into fake news and conspiracy theory territory to get them doubly fired up in 2018 for the congressional elections. They can then use that as a claim for mandate against Trump and as further proof that the 2016 results were fraudulent as they head to 2020.

Though electronic voting machines make it highly unlikely to ever alter an election, the Democrats can challenge individual paper ballots cast and create a narrative that Republicans shut out black people, gay people, hispanics, etc in an effort to suppress the vote. Remember, narrative is more important than truth to Democrats.

The left, in their arrogance and moral superiority, is just as likely to fall for a con as the right, but because so much of the media leans left the Democrats know no fact checker is going to call bulls–t on the claims. They will smugly reassure themselves that Russia really did hand the election to Trump and Republicans really did suppress or reject lawfully cast votes to such a degree as to hand Trump the White House.

But there is a second and very real reason the Democrats are doing this.

If Pennsylvania counties run by Democrats; Michigan with a lot of Democrats, but overseen by a Republican Secretary of State; and Wisconsin with a Democrat Secretary of State can drag out the recount process, it will prevent electors from being chosen for the Electoral College in those states.

That would force the election into the House of Representatives.

Trump would still win, but it would force every member of the GOP in the House on the record for Trump. There would be no walking away from him, walking it back, or distancing themselves. They would then own Donald Trump completely.

The Democrats have hit on a strategy that will see the mainstream media and left force Republican ownership of every bad idea, every stupid tweet, and every failure that Trump advances. They would love to start with his presidency in general. In two years, every Republican in the House will see commercials attacking them for their vote to affirm Trump’s presidency.

This is the longest of long shots for the Democrats. The odds are it will not happen. But they are grasping at straws now. They will either delegitimize the process or they will try to tie individual Republicans so tightly to Donald Trump that there is no shadow between them.

Of course, this only works if Trump is the disaster they expect him to be. This is also reason for the GOP to not delay in repealing Obama’s agenda as quickly as possible.

Looming Recounts Mean Election May Not Be Over Yet

If you thought the election was over except for the protests and the formality of the Electoral College, prepare to be disappointed. One recount has already been requested and experts are urging Hillary Clinton file for recounts in three states.

The first recount was requested by Pat McCrory, governor of North Carolina, on Tuesday according to Politico. McCrory, the Republican candidate, was trailing Democrat Roy Cooper, by more than 8,500 votes according to the Cooper campaign. McCrory’s campaign has alleged widespread voter fraud.

The first recount of this election season may not be the last. New York Magazine reports that a team of computer scientists has urged Hillary Clinton to file for recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania citing signs that vote totals could have been manipulated.

J. Alex Halderman, director of the University of Michigan Center for Computer Security and Society, was among the scientists who found a suspicious pattern of Clinton performing more poorly in counties with electronic voting machines than where paper ballots were used. The group said that the seven percent difference was large enough to raise the possibility that election computers could have been hacked.

So far no proof of tampering with the election has been found, but the large difference between counties with electronic voting machines and paper ballots is an anomaly that Halderman believes should be investigated. There may be other explanations for the discrepancy as well.

Donald Trump’s margins of victory in Michigan and Pennsylvania were less than one percent. Michigan has not been formally decided, but Clinton trails by 11,000 votes there. She lost Pennsylvania by 68,000 votes. Wisconsin had a margin of one percent, about 27,000 votes. Halderman’s statistical analysis, focused on Wisconsin, shows that there were enough suspicious votes to throw the outcome of these states into question. It would take a reversal of all three states to change the outcome of the Electoral College election, although faithless electors may change that total. As many as six electors have said that they will not vote for Donald Trump.

It is not clear if the suspicious pattern extends to other states as well. Also unclear is whether the North Carolina recount will examine presidential as well as gubernatorial votes.

The deadline to apply for a recount is looming in all three states. NY Magazine reports that Clinton supporters are lobbying for recounts and a forensic examination of voting machines, but the Obama Administration does not want the results challenged in order to smooth the transfer of power.

The possibility of Russian tampering with election results was raised prior to the election. The Obama Administration has blamed Russia for the hack of Democratic National Committee emails. Donald Trump has remained skeptical of the Russian connection, but Mike Pence has indicated that he believes that Russia was behind the email hack.

Whether Hillary will ask for a recount hasn’t been determined yet. The outcome of any recounts and investigation may not change the election, but it does raise the possibility that the election that everyone thought was settled might not be over yet.