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Live from Principles First!

February 26, 2024
Notes
Transcript
Listen to Sarah Longwell, Jonathan V. Last and A.B. Stoddard live on stage at the 2024 Principles First Summit!
This transcript was generated automatically and may contain errors and omissions. Ironically, the transcription service has particular problems with the word “bulwark,” so you may see it mangled as “Bullard,” “Boulart,” or even “bull word.” Enjoy!
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:00

    He thank you so much guys. Thank you. I’ve missed this two years in a row from illnesses, and I think I’m not gonna get sick till later this afternoon. So I I appreciate it. Thanks for bringing me here.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:11

    Thanks to Heath and all you guys for coming from everywhere. I can’t believe how many people are here. And, you know, a hundred percent less syphilis than at CPAC right now. Alright, it’s, It’s primary day. We look, it’s gonna all come down to turnout.
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:35

    Polls are showing Nikki Haley within thirty points of Donald Trump right there with her. So I don’t wanna spend too much time on this. But I’ll ask you I’ll ask you three questions that I want you each to respond to. In New Hampshire, Nikki Haley won Democratic voters who crossed over eighty six to five. Will she do better than that or worse than that today with Democrats in South Carolina?
  • Speaker 1
    0:00:57

    Worse. AB?
  • Speaker 2
    0:00:59

    I’m I’m gonna be a ray of hope today. I’m gonna say better. Oh. Like like level or better.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:05

    Okay. She won independent voters fifty eight to thirty nine. Will she do better with independence in South Carolina today?
  • Speaker 2
    0:01:14

    Level or better. Sarah Longwell,
  • Speaker 3
    0:01:16

    worse. And here’s the wait. Hold on. Are are we talking percentages, or are we talking, like, absolute numbers? Because here’s the thing, in New Hampshire, there are way more independents who culturally are used to voting in
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:30

    I just need percentages. I’m trying to norm it out because the the point I’m trying to get at.
  • Speaker 3
    0:01:34

    Well, let’s say she does a higher percentage, but a much lower level of absolute numbers. That doesn’t translate into a better showing.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:40

    Okay. What I’m trying to say is the more these people see of her, the less they like her, even the independence and demos. That’s what I’m trying to get it. That’s what I’m trying to make you spell it out. The subtext, the subtext.
  • Speaker 1
    0:01:50

    Okay. And with Republicans, she she got thirty nine percent of self identified Republicans in New Hampshire. Give me her number with self identified Republicans today.
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:00

    Thirty percent. Twenty eight percent.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:05

    AB. I’m
  • Speaker 2
    0:02:05

    gonna yeah. I’m in the in that window. Definitely worse.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:08

    I’ll take the under. Okay. Last question.
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:11

    Take the other one.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:13

    If this is prices, right? She did one dollar.
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:15

    Get to thirty.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:16

    One dollar. Does any of it matter? No. Right. Does Nikki Haley strike you as the person who’s gonna stand up to Marco Rubio and Mitch McConnell and Ron DeSantis and the entire rest of the party and say, no, you guys are the crazy ones.
  • Speaker 1
    0:02:32

    I’m not gonna do this.
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:34

    I mean, I don’t know. Let me go to bat for Nikki for a second. Okay. So, I think she’s going to do worse, not because I think Nikki Haley is worse. I actually think she’s a much better candidate today in South Sarah Longwell, than she was when she was kind of doing her middling thing in New Hampshire.
  • Speaker 3
    0:02:50

    Right? The problem is that South Carolina, which is her home state, which is gonna hurt more. It’s gonna hurt more for her to underperform in South Carolina because she was the governor there, but it’s also just not a state that’s a good fit for her. Right? New Hampshire was a much better fit for somebody like Nikki Haley, even the Republicans in New Hampshire are a much better fit for somebody like Nikki Haley.
  • Speaker 3
    0:03:11

    But in South Carolina, I’m amazed. We just did a focus group in South Carolina. In fact, new focus group podcast dropped today. It’s with Tim Alberta. Who wrote that really amazing profile of Nikki Haley, a couple of years ago.
  • Speaker 3
    0:03:25

    And what’s so interesting about the station I have Will Saletan about Nikki is that that piece was called Nikki Haley a time for choosing. And it was about this question was she going to choose to burn the boats? What is she going to choose to do to basically and because Alberto’s thesis was Nikki Haley was a decent person who wanted to do the right thing, wanted the future of the Republican party to be sort of a a decent American leadership in the world, free markets kind of party. Was she gonna choose that or was she gonna end up? Back in Trump’s corner, right?
  • Speaker 3
    0:04:03

    And the thing that you hear from all the voters in the South Sarah Longwell, and and there was nobody was gonna vote for her. And there was actually there was one woman who was gonna vote for because she wanted her to have a good enough showing so that Trump might pick her to be vice president. But she still wanted to vote for woman, like, trump, she was a Trump person. But the thing that they all say is they say they can’t trust her. They can’t trust Nikki Haley.
  • Speaker 3
    0:04:26

    And the reason they think they can’t trust her is because Nikki Haley has been on multiple sides of the Trump question now for a long time, right? They heard her say, I won’t run for president if Donald Trump doesn’t want me to. Like, remember when she was asked if she was gonna run, and she said, Well, I would talk to Trump first and I would sort of get his permission. That doesn’t exactly scream strength and authenticity and the things that she needed to win. But she’s, she’s so she has chosen now, I think, to be burn the boat, Nikki.
  • Speaker 3
    0:05:01

    The problem is she’s been both of those things for so long that people can’t trust her. But where she is right now, I think she’s doing a good job. I think she I think she’s running as the person she genuinely wants to be, the person that I had always hoped she wanted to be, and she’s showing something saying she’s gonna stay in through Super Tuesday no matter what happens. Like, I just appreciate something about that. Like, I got all kinds of problems with how she’s comported herself.
  • Speaker 3
    0:05:23

    But I think that there’s something about saying, no, I’m gonna stay and I’m gonna make him fight for it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:27

    Okay. I’m sorry. I was mean. I take it back. Alright.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:33

    That’s enough time in South Sarah Longwell. IVF, which is suddenly the most important issue in America. So the Alabama Supreme Court rules. They don’t they don’t exactly rule that IVF is illegal. It’s not a ban on it, but they they issue a ruling that is going to probably drive IVF out of the state of Alabama.
  • Speaker 1
    0:05:52

    And we have what should be a weird moment of a trap because IVF is wildly popular. Eighty six percent of Americans are in favor of IVF. Something like seventy eight percent of pro life advocates are in favor of IVF, eighty three percent of evangelical Christians in favor of IVF. And so you, you would think this is gonna be a problem. And Nikki, when asked about this, She got herself on the wrong side initially, and she’s been scurrying to back off of that since then and has tried to then frame it as a state’s rights issue.
  • Speaker 1
    0:06:27

    That, you know, like, I, she’s like, I personally think IVF is great, but also we have to respect states and every state is gonna come to different decisions about it. And, and then trump does what trump does. This is why I do think people misunderestimate Trump in certain ways. He is He’s a demagogue. Sure.
  • Speaker 1
    0:06:45

    But demagogues are a dime a dozen. He’s a very talented demagogue. He’s is very good at finding the center of things. This is why so many people think he’s pro choice. You know, and
  • Speaker 2
    0:06:55

    Because he is.
  • Speaker 1
    0:06:57

    Also because he is. But he, you know, he immediately just popped out and and was like, yeah, IVF is great. What just happened in in Alabama is a travesty. It’s a Travesham Ocary, and, they got a I call in the Alabama legislature to pass a law protecting IVF. Is that gonna work?
  • Speaker 2
    0:07:15

    So I think that this is the beginning of the issue. If the Democrats are smart, not the end of the issue, you saw Steve Danes, who runs the National public and senatorial Committee alert the next morning. All of the candidates up fighting for swing states for them all put out statements including Carrie Lake about how they just want so many babies and they’re so pro family and their pro IVF. And so they’re now the champions.
  • Speaker 1
    0:07:40

    Sorry. I just wanted to ask you though. Does it matter that Steve Dane’s co sponsor to Bill granting full constitutional protections to frozen embryos in twenty twenty one?
  • Speaker 2
    0:07:48

    Right. So and Mike Johnson has been firm about this that life begins at conception. I was just getting to the fact that incoherence is a feature not a bug. In the age of trump. And as long as Donald Trump gets to change positions, every day, and the Republicans have to follow him, they get to also And so when he his new thing is people think that I have dementia because I confuse Nikki Haley and Nancy Pelosi.
  • Speaker 2
    0:08:13

    That’s just what I do. I change names around, and I have fun, and I’m being sarcastic, and no one has a sense of humor. And so this this IVF pivot will help them in the near term, but if the Democrats smart, they will start running ads saying, are your eggs safe in Mississippi? Are your eggs safe in Idaho? And they need they they need to do this because it is the logical next question about what authoritarians wanna take from you.
  • Speaker 2
    0:08:43

    And there’s a huge menu. They need to be very explicit about it. And Donald Trump has been working very hard. He probably he might not have known this was coming. He’s been working very hard to throw the evangelical leadership under the bus on abortion and to say we’re gonna lose elections on this issue.
  • Speaker 2
    0:09:00

    So if they’ve already let him do this, yeah, the issues play technically over within the movement and within evangelical Christians they’re gonna support them nonetheless. But for the Democrats, I think the story is not over, and it’s it’s wide open. I mean, these stories the last couple days of these women, finding out that this had happened to them in this, I have two children from IVF of my three, finding out in the middle of this course, that you have spent so much time and money preparing for and so much emotional duress invested in. The injections you have taken, the things you’ve had to cancel, the secret you keeping from your family and your coworkers and your friends, hanging your hopes on the retrieval, the harvest, the transfer, all these things. It is so completely overwhelming in the idea that they are sitting in Alabama not knowing how to control their future.
  • Speaker 2
    0:09:57

    For their family with these embryos in, in a freezer somewhere is, it was it really knocked me over watching watching these people. And this is a devastating story for them that I insist did not end with Trump’s truth social post yesterday.
  • Speaker 1
    0:10:12

    Alright. I’m gonna I’m gonna be super dark but I’m gonna let you go first.
  • Speaker 3
    0:10:17

    You’re kidding. So here’s the so I’m gonna defend Nikki again, here because I actually don’t think she said people made her out to say. I think what she said was she also had her kids via IVF and that she really wanted those kids and they felt like a life. And I think this is actually not an uncomplicated question a little bit in the sense that, so I also have to kids, that were done via IVF. Although lesbians, the thing that they tell you when you go to fertility clinic is it’s like, well, you don’t actually suffer from infertility.
  • Speaker 3
    0:10:53

    You just suffer from lack of exposure to sperm.
  • Speaker 1
    0:10:58

    Not sure I’d call that suffering.
  • Speaker 3
    0:11:02

    So you’re just we’re gonna get you some of that. And then, and then but but actually what happened, I’ll just this is a little bit of a personal story, but I got, explicit approval for my wife to tell it, was we started out under that sort of feeling like, oh, okay, this is gonna be great. And then we tried for, what ended up being almost close to two years, and it didn’t happen, and we had to move to IVF. And we also, we had miscarriages in there, and it was like, it’s one of the hardest times when you want children badly, and it’s not happening. And eventually, obviously, it worked.
  • Speaker 3
    0:11:42

    And now I have two kids, boys who I love more than life itself, and I think that, like, you’re messing with something in people’s lives when you do this that goes, people think, like, this is not your job. Tommy Tuberville. Tommy Tuberville does not get to have a say in, like, this thing that’s happening. And so I agree with AB. The problem is with Democrats, they are, like, allergic to offense.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:12

    And offense is what you do when you take an issue and say, no, we’re the pro life party. These guys aren’t pro life. They weren’t pro life during COVID. They weren’t you make this point. They’re not pro life on taking care of your kids once they’re born, like, you know, and there is an offense message here, and it’s up to them to jump on it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:12:34

    Alright. I think this is a hundred percent loser for Democrats.
  • Speaker 3
    0:12:38

    Okay.
  • Speaker 2
    0:12:40

    Whoa. I wanna hear it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:12:42

    So Donald Trump has basically come out and openly defied the the f furthest elements of pro life incorporated on this. Right? And he said the IVF is great. He’s called on the Bamistate legislature to rectify this horrible law and of horrible wrong and pass a law protecting IVF. And nobody from, like, far out Radtra Pro Life World is gonna crack back on him.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:09

    They’re all gonna say it’s fine. And this is then gonna create a halo effect for the rest of the Republicans running, because right now you have a split. Some people in the Senate like Daines are now reversing themselves and pretending that they they don’t like this. You got a hundred twenty five Republicans in the house who are still on board with a cosigns to a bill that would essentially create personhood for for embryos. And those people, I think, will get to benefit from Trump’s halo, right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:37

    So that well, sure. My rep says this crazy thing, but I don’t have to worry about it because Trump, you know, Trump is really super pro IVF. In fact, do you want me to read it? Do you want me to do the read the thing I did?
  • Speaker 3
    0:13:47

    Read the thing. Yeah. Yeah. It’s funny.
  • Speaker 1
    0:13:48

    So I I took a turn as as Trump speechwriter on threads this morning. I’m sitting on the train coming down and somebody responded to one of the things I said, I bet you a thousand dollars. Trump couldn’t even tell you what IVF is. A night. My understanding is that they take the baby, the very small baby.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:06

    Some say even smaller than the baby Jesus. And they inject it right into the mother, and it’s beautiful. It’s a beautiful thing. We love babies. Maybe not the Mexican ones.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:16

    You can’t say that. Fake news gets very upset when you say that, but the Mexican IVF should stay in Mexican. So this is but you’ll just do this. And also every minute that you’re you’re litigating this stuff. You’re not talking about dobs.
  • Speaker 1
    0:14:34

    Right? This is I I just think it’s lose, lose, lose.
  • Speaker 3
    0:14:37

    Hold on. No. I so and to be fair to be fair, this is predicated on the idea that Democrats able to prosecute this case, which is not a hundred percent that that can happen. But if they did because here’s the thing you’re absolutely right about, which is Donald Trump is perceived as a cultural moderate by voters. And it is very much misunderstood.
  • Speaker 3
    0:14:56

    And here’s the thing about why voters think that he is a moderate on abortion. They believe he doesn’t engage in any kind of sexual morality they’re like, look, in focus groups, I don’t say this. I’m just gonna put it on the voters. They say this. They’re like, he probably paid for an abortion.
  • Speaker 3
    0:15:12

    And so they they think that. And so they don’t think he’s pro life. They don’t think he is like the rest of the party. There is a reason that Donald Trump is actually more popular than the Republican Party, and it is because people perceive him to be not kind of a Mike Johnson type or a Mike Pence type on both gay issues and on, issues of reproductive rights. And so if you talk to a bunch of sort of swing voting women and say, how, you know, do you think that Trump is extreme on abortion or moderate on abortion?
  • Speaker 3
    0:15:40

    Or, you know, they’ll just all moderate. And so and the more extreme the Republican party gets on things like IVF, Trump is able to triangulate against that and look more moderate himself. Okay? True. But the Democrats have to be remind people that Trump put the three Supreme Court justices on the court that overturned Roe.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:02

    And he has appointed the judges and that the Republican party and I do think this is gonna be important. It is going to be important. It’s a walking and chewing gum thing. You have to run against Trump but you gotta run against the whole Republican Party. You’ve gotta run against what it has turned into under Trump and Mike Johnson because when you do that, If you can effectively prosecute that case, I do think you win that.
  • Speaker 1
    0:16:24

    I mean, maybe. I mean, I I just I we live in a world where nobody remembers the pandemic. Right. Million million Americans died. This guy was standing out there saying we should shine the light inside them, maybe put in the bleach, the Ivermectin, it works.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:43

    They remember it. They just don’t remember to blame Trump for it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:16:46

    They don’t remember any of it. This is The other gentleman who writes about focus groups for us.
  • Speaker 3
    0:16:52

    This is what JBL does to bait me into writing for the website. He publishes other people about focus groups. Just to troll me.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:01

    That’s a hundred percent true. And and he did a focus group with, pro trump, pro choice Republican women. From swing states. And they all thought, oh, yeah. Trump is great.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:15

    He’s right with me. I, you know, I I feel really good about trump’s in his position on abortion. And when when asked then about the dobs thing, like, you know, don’t don’t you don’t you have maybe thinking he had something because they all hated dobs. They think dobs is really bad. Three of the fifteen said that maybe Trump bore some partial responsibility for it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:37

    And I just I that you know what? That sounds about right to me. I’ve seen the people. I live with the people.
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:45

    That’s what
  • Speaker 1
    0:17:45

    they think. They can’t hold these things in their heads.
  • Speaker 3
    0:17:48

    That’s true. Although, so part of the biggest problem for Democrats, and here’s where I think it’s gonna help, and here’s where I think they need to be aggressive on it, is that you may have noticed that Joe Biden is not doing great with people age, twenty nine and younger. Right? Young, young folks, remember the focus group we did with the young people, I did it with Tim. And one of the girls was like, You know, he’s, like, the same age as my grandma, and she says a lot of problematic stuff.
  • Speaker 3
    0:18:11

    So I think, man, I think maybe he’s like that. And, you know, so but the thing that will get those people out, it is not going to be Joe Biden, but it is going to be those shoes, and it is going to be the contrast between Joe Biden saying I’ll protect reproductive freedom, and being able to effectively prosecute a case against Republicans who want to get rid of and Donald Trump who appointed the justices who overturned Ron. I think if you can do that, it does a lot for the enthusiasm that right now isn’t there for Joe Biden and is showing up in his sort of lackluster pole members.
  • Speaker 2
    0:18:44

    I think that you you actually argued this months ago that he’s he’s kind of effectively won on on on the, you know, distancing himself from jobs and and the abortion issue, I think it is still so powerful for the Democrats to tie when they try to explain to people And you’re right. They they have to say these are the justices that he appointed with quotes from him saying we’re gonna overturn Roe v Wade and and pictures and everything, but IVF is so much more tangible to people than when you explain to them, what has happened since daubs in terms of women with ectopic pregnancies and and and being denied procedures because doctors are leaving the OR. To call their lawyers. So that’s a little bit too complicated unless it’s been in their community or their family or their circle of friends. IVF is so much more accessible and issue to to tie to Dobbs, to talk about Dobbs, and to talk about the Supreme Court that he set up to repeal, roe v wade.
  • Speaker 2
    0:19:47

    And I think it’s, just I think it’s a slam dunk. You just basically say, It doesn’t matter what Donald Trump is telling you. These are the people in red state legislators. They’re coming eventually for birth control, but right now they want your frozen eggs if you’re a single woman and your frozen embryos if you’re a married couple trying to conceive. They can pretend in Alabama, they’re gonna fix it.
  • Speaker 2
    0:20:09

    Where is it gonna be next? These are people or dystopian and radical. And it’s it’s just the easiest message. I mean, I I just
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:16

    don’t think you trust
  • Speaker 2
    0:20:17

    I don’t think it’s over for rep I don’t think it’s over as an issue for them. I really don’t.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:21

    But he and here’s just the last, like, one thing to understand about this race, It hasn’t started yet. Like, it’s not even it feels to us like
  • Speaker 1
    0:20:30

    It’s because it’s already over.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:31

    Stop it. So you stop it. There are reasons that people run campaigns. There are things that they teach voters who are not paying attention yet, and as somebody who talks to a lot of voters, they are not paying attention yet. And look, the dynamic of this upcoming race, if you listen to me talk, I talk about this a lot.
  • Speaker 3
    0:20:52

    Is it’s not like persuadables in a different thing where you got two people, then everybody doesn’t know that well. Cause then you’re trying to teach them new stuff. And that’s not really what this race is gonna be about. Unfortunately, and this is why if you guys were there last night, I was talking about not getting exhausted and how we really have to keep our blood up and keep our energy up because it’s easy to get like, oh my god. I can’t believe we’re gonna do this again with these two guys.
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:16

    And the voters that are persuadable hate both of them. Okay? The persuadable voters this time are different than other times. They are double doubters, double haters, a pox on both their houses. I don’t like either of you guys, which means it’s gonna be a race about who they dislike more.
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:35

    And I don’t like when things are just about hate. It’s not my favorite, but
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:41

    Giving to the hate
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:42

    of the Jedi. But negative polarity is. Yeah. Okay. Negative polarity is going to rule the day.
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:50

    And that’s why, like, the campaign’s really gonna matter. Right? Joe Biden’s old. But you know what? That’s not true.
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:57

    He can either be
  • Speaker 1
    0:21:57

    He’s old. Yep.
  • Speaker 3
    0:21:59

    But you know what? He can be Yoda old. Wise, better to protect us, teach a new generation, or he can be.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:08

    God name the character.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:09

    I don’t
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:09

    Name the cap, you have no idea.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:11

    I don’t know the bad guy old man.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:12

    Sorry. Say this somewhere, and now you’re trying to do your sci fi analogy. But you’re not a nerd.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:18

    I know.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:19

    You can’t fake it.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:19

    What’s the name of the bad guy?
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:21

    Emperor. Emperor Palpatine. Okay. Yeah.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:24

    That guy.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:27

    This is why I didn’t have a girlfriend till I was thirty. Okay. This is actually a very, very nice segue because I I was hoping to rope you all very nice people into being co defendants with me with the no label’s lawsuit.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:45

    It’s not a lawsuit. Okay. Listen. No labels.
  • Speaker 1
    0:22:48

    They’re all co conspirators just by listening to us talk about this.
  • Speaker 3
    0:22:52

    This is actually and do you guys know this that JBL one day on a podcast we were doing, signed an insane rant against no labels, talking about how anybody involved with no labels should never be able to get a table at spago, They should be. They should be just ruined their credibility. And it was and I, you know, was doing, like, simmer down, simmer down, but he did it right before I was supposed to debate Nancy Jacobson, the head of no labels. We were supposed to have a public debate. And she used JBL’s rant to cancel the debate.
  • Speaker 3
    0:23:27

    She sent me a note that said, I watched your despicable podcast. With your despicable cohost, who said
  • Speaker 1
    0:23:37

    Back check true.
  • Speaker 3
    0:23:39

    Yeah. And then They sent a letter to the Department of Justice claiming that there was a Rico conspiracy against no labels that included our podcast, and JBL and a bunch of other people who are trying to educate the public about why no well, no labels would have a spoiler or candidacy effect. So JBL keeps calling me being like, am I going to jail? Am I going to jail? Cause G o j?
  • Speaker 3
    0:24:06

    I was like, buddy, anybody can send a letter to DOJ. Like, this is not a real thing. It’s cool, man.
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:12

    I’m being stereotyped based on my New Jersey heritage. So so AB, I wanna talk to you about this because yesterday, we had a piece by great sergeant in the New Republic, basically arguing that the bottom was falling out no labels because mansion had pulled the plug on his. Maybe I’ll run-in Saint Larry. He’s gonna run for Senate, which is great. Thank you Larry Hogan for not running as a third party presidential spoiler.
  • Speaker 1
    0:24:37

    Yay. So when we were talking about this, I was like, what do you think? And you you took a contrary opinion to Greg sergeant. Can you explain to the people?
  • Speaker 2
    0:24:44

    I’m sorry. The new new republic piece claims that the effort is in meltdown. It’s very well funded and it’s very well organized. They’re already on six sixteen ballots, which is more than RfK junior can say for himself. So it is pretty intentional, and it’s pretty, like I said, it’s pretty competent.
  • Speaker 2
    0:25:01

    And they wanted Romney, Romney would have been the, obviously, the ideal candidate, with Hogan and Manchin out. It clearly looks to the casual observer, like it’s over, but there are there are other people that they’re pursuing. And so at that point, your challenge, if you go to a lower tier by a name ID problem, if you get someone who’s competent and could appeal, but is not RFK junior or Mitt Romney or I guess Larry Hogan. So so it doesn’t mean that it’s over. The theory that it’s in meltdown is wrong.
  • Speaker 2
    0:25:33

    There’s an interesting kind of they’ve just invested so much money. I just don’t think they’re not gonna go through with it. And then there’s a theory that I mean, there’s a Dick kept part and people who are working against it are trying to get them to back out because no label says maintained all along. They’re gonna do this if there’s path to two seventy. They’ve maintained vociferously recently that they don’t intend to be a spoiler for Trump.
  • Speaker 2
    0:25:58

    And so this new kind of exit ramp that people are pushing for who oppose the effort is, can you get out at the last minute if it looks like it’s not viable?
  • Speaker 1
    0:26:09

    By July.
  • Speaker 2
    0:26:10

    Right. And that’s that’s pretty tricky. So you get someone in, you get someone in, and you have to work up their name ID, and that’s mid mid March soon. Early April, the latest. And then I don’t I I just, obviously, we’re in a new world.
  • Speaker 2
    0:26:24

    I, you know, there’s a lot of concern about this going to the house and becoming a contingent election scenario where the house decides it, which I I really truly believe would just break the country in half and, like, burn it down. And that the the American electorate is not prepared to accept an election decided by the house right now. So they’ve a lot of decisions to make about whether they they wanna go forward, I think, like I said, because the operation is in drive already that they do that. And then, yeah, at what point did they see a path two seventy, which avoids the nightmare house scenario, or do they actually give in to the the groups trying to dissuade them and say, okay, you’re right. We did this.
  • Speaker 2
    0:27:08

    And this historical effort, because we believed the public so hates Biden and Trump that they would come on and give us a our ticket of plurality. And then when do they back off? I mean, I don’t anyway.
  • Speaker 1
    0:27:20

    Talk to anybody in this orbit?
  • Speaker 2
    0:27:23

    No, I I’m I’m I’m, agnostic. I’m, I’m, I’m on the outside. I’ve volunteered with no labels for many years big believer in what they’ve done with the problem solver’s caucus and the Senate sort of Coalition of the of the willing, which mansion and and Collins.
  • Speaker 1
    0:27:38

    And also former insider for Bulwark and for the years. And It all makes sense now.
  • Speaker 2
    0:27:44

    I I want I I I really wanna say, and this audience will appreciate that we would have no chips act no pact act, no codification of same sex marriage, no first gun reform in thirty years, no electoral account act to update. No infrastructure without that group that functions in Congress and stays at the table and persuaded A filibuster proof majority in the Senate of Republican senators to defy their president and give Biden all these accomplishments. I’m just supposed to the unity ticket.
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:16

    Yeah. The fact that they’ve done such good work with the problem solver’s caucus is actually why such a bummer they’ve decided to shred their credibility through this cycle. Amy’s right. I’m just gonna make the pro they are in meltdown case just really quickly. Which is the idea that they’re gonna get to two seventy, how many electoral delegates does Delaware get?
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:35

    Three? Three, right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:28:36

    Three.
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:36

    I don’t think they’re gonna get to three. And here’s what but they they they put out material that says they’re gonna win a bunch of states. One of those states is Delaware. Can you think of anything about Delaware? That might get it really implausible that their unity ticket would beat Joe Biden that’d be better than Joe Biden.
  • Speaker 3
    0:28:55

    I can think of a reason, which is that it’s Joe Biden’s home state for like a gazillion years. Right? They’re not gonna vote for the no labels, can it? They’ve been selling snake oil this whole time. And basically what’s happened is the people that they’ve been trotting around saying, Hey, it could be somebody like Larry Hogan could be somebody like Joe and who all of these billionaires who’ve kicked in all this money have given them, now those guys are both out, real out.
  • Speaker 3
    0:29:17

    And so now going down the list. And I actually think full meltdown looks something like them going to RfK Junior and being like, What do you think, man? We got access. You got whatever it is you’re doing and, you know, but the billionaires who funded this thing are not gonna like that. And they’re not gonna like some B tier, second tier candidate.
  • Speaker 3
    0:29:37

    And so now they are just in this, like, potentially trouble making position. So I think they can still cause trouble, but I think that in terms of them doing anything that looks like a serious effort, they also, they went from no. We’re gonna have all of these delegates We’re gonna hold a big convention in person, in April. No. Then it was, no, we’re gonna hold a zoom convention.
  • Speaker 3
    0:29:56

    Cool. Now it’s like a few party insiders are gonna pick this person. I think that kinda looks like a meltdown. Anyway, enough of the labels, but
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:04

    No. No. So one more thing. Because I wanted you to you said this to me in passing yesterday about the polling and polling showing that third parties really hurt hurt Biden. And this speaks to your broader case about building an anti trump coalition.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:18

    So the most recent one of these I’ve seen is the I know you don’t like Harvard Harris. Right? Don’t like There are
  • Speaker 3
    0:30:23

    bad polling outlet.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:24

    Yeah. You think they’re a bad polling outlet. Their most recent one, when it’s straight up, Trump and Biden, Trump is plus seven. When it’s Trump Biden RfK, Trump’s lead gets a little bit bigger. And when you throw Jill stein and Cornell Westin, Trump goes up eleven.
  • Speaker 1
    0:30:43

    So the more third party candidates you offer And that’s because they’re each appealing to some different part of what would it be the anti trump coalition. Yes. Would you like to speak
  • Speaker 3
    0:30:54

    to the police? No. So just go back to the idea of like double doubters, double haters. Right? If you give them, like, what happens in that situation is you’re basically causing people to, like, what voters would talk about is choosing the lesser of two evils.
  • Speaker 3
    0:31:07

    Right? That’s how they talk about it. In fact, if we had a drinking game, every time and we had to drink every time someone said I have to choose the lesser of two evils, like we’d all be dead, from alcohol poisoning because it just and people say it all the time about how they make their choices, because the you are not building a pro Joe Biden coalition. You are building an anti trump coalition. And the anti trump coalition comb, like, has a slice of those Nikki Haley voters.
  • Speaker 3
    0:31:32

    Right? It’s rightly independents. It’s soft GOP voters. You need those people. You give them a unity taken to Joe Manchin and Larry Hogan, those folks, they’re right there.
  • Speaker 3
    0:31:41

    They’re they’re out. But then you give them Cornell West Well, there’s a lot of sort of, disaffected black voters in that group or young voters, who are more progressive. And it peels them off. And anytime you peel off a segment of the people who when push comes to shove of who do I hate more, they choose Trump and go Biden. You give them off ramps, and it fractures the anti trump coalition, and that is how this race is lost.
  • Speaker 3
    0:32:06

    And so It’s why I have always taken the third party stuff really seriously because with this the particular psychology of this race, it can do enormous damage.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:16

    Thank you. That’s what I wanted. So we’re gonna end with a big philosophical question. But before that, new slash today at the CPEC at one o’clock, the defeated former president will be giving an address. Did you guys know that?
  • Speaker 3
    0:32:30

    Yes.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:31

    Yeah. So I will say that once upon a time having a former president who is the presumptive nominee of his party speaking at a conference where the opening speaker said, welcome to the end of democracy. We are here to over throw it completely. We did not get there all the way on January sixth, but we will endeavor to get rid of it and replace it with this right here. He said raising a fist.
  • Speaker 1
    0:32:59

    So that’s Jack for Sovietak, the the pizza gate guy.
  • Speaker 3
    0:33:02

    I thought he raised a cross. I think it was a cross.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:05

    Yeah. Yeah. Oh, well, then I’m cool with it. Yeah. Never mind.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:10

    I’ll take it back.
  • Speaker 3
    0:33:11

    So
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:14

    I think it would have been the end of the campaign for the presidential nominee to appear at the same conference that was opened that way. I get the sense that’s not the case anymore. Maybe I’m wrong. So his this is a we have advanced look at his advanced look at the remarks, which he may or may not stick to. But, I don’t know if you guys saw this this morning.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:38

    Right? So he’s he’s gonna say four years ago, I told you that Crooked Joe Biden got to the White House. Our borders would be abolished. Our middle class would be decimated. And our communities would be plagued.
  • Speaker 1
    0:33:50

    Interesting word. By bloodshed, chaos and violent crime. As the saying goes, Trump was right about everything. That is not the saying. I just want you to know.
  • Speaker 1
    0:34:00

    I have the trademark and that’s not it. So he’s gonna do American carnage again. He’s he’s just gonna do American carnage again. Is that gonna work again? I mean, spoiler, yes, it is, but I’d like to hear what you guys think.
  • Speaker 2
    0:34:16

    So, at least Defonic was area saying that Democrats destroyed democracy, because the twenty twenty election was unconstitutional the tr, Trump’s remarks say that he’s gonna talk about the tyranny of Joe Biden, and that’s their MO. And I think it’s gonna work on a lot of uninformed voters that they that we are living under fascism now. Trump always says the socialists, the communists, the fascists in his speeches, and he’s turned you know, basically the threat of him and his party, into a criticism of Joe Biden and the Democrats. And They’re happy with it. They’re raising money on it.
  • Speaker 2
    0:34:53

    The government, we’re living in a third world country where the government is going after this, murder political poll leader And, it’s it’s terribly effective right now. If he’s winning all the polling in the swing states, They’re not gonna let up on it because it’s working. So everyone should prepare for that.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:14

    I mean, I don’t wanna sound like an elitist. But people are buying a lot of boats. People are even buying four hundred dollars Snacks.
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:22

    You are sold it.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:23

    They’re buying sneakers and trump NFTs. And how does that work? If it’s so terrible. I don’t understand.
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:28

    There’s a lot of people in this country. Some of them are buying sneakers. Small number of them are buying boats and putting Trump flags on them, but I don’t know that it’s enough to say that, like, this is the fullness of the economy, but whatever. Here’s the thing.
  • Speaker 1
    0:35:39

    Let’s have our fight again. No.
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:40

    I don’t wanna fight about the boats, or the economy. What I wanna say though is that, like AB said, it’s working right now. I just here’s the thing. You can come talk to me in four months. And if in four months, it still looks like this, I will hit the panic button.
  • Speaker 3
    0:35:58

    But the reason that I have not been panicked this whole time that everybody else has been freaking out Even though I said a long time ago, I thought Joe Biden is indeed old and that is indeed going to be a big problem and Just whether the whether the media talks about it or not, the voters have noticed. Okay? They’ve noticed. However, Right now, people know what they don’t like about Joe Biden because he is the president. He is right in front of them, and they see it, and they’ve got their frustrations.
  • Speaker 3
    0:36:28

    They’ve forgotten about Donald Trump, And actually, something that is happening right now is because the media who I actually feel bad for. They sort of can’t win in a lot of senses. Everybody who’s like stop broadcasting all his insane conspiracy theories, it just elevates them. And now everybody’s like, why aren’t you broadcasting his insane conspiracy theories none of these voters now know that he promotes them. And both of those things are kinda true, and I don’t know what to do about it other than I believe that when voters see Donald Trump more, when he is in front of them, when they see how much he how I mean, he’s always been on hinge, which actually is to his benefit because the drop off doesn’t seem so pronounced.
  • Speaker 3
    0:37:06

    You’re like, he always sounded like a lunatic like this. But I’ve listened to swing voters now through multiple cycles, and they think it’s not even democracy or abortion, They think he’s awful. They think he’s a jerk. They do. And I think that when people are snapped into again, as long as there’s no third party, as long as there is a head to head competition and it becomes a contrast with Trump, I do think Joe Biden’s gonna win.
  • Speaker 3
    0:37:35

    I I believe that that scenario exists. I do not think we have to be like And and the other thing I’ll say in the contrast, but again, this is why prosecuting this case is so important. The Democrats have done a pretty good job in part because of responding to the Republican Party that’s been driving itself off a cliff of not putting four there’s a bunch of people on the Democratic Party now who are like very normal. Josh Shapiro, in Pennsylvania is a normal guy. The progressives were like we’re taking down the Will Saletan statue.
  • Speaker 3
    0:38:12

    And he was like, no, you’re not. What are you talking about? And Joe Biden was like, yeah, we’re not doing that. That’s stop it. And Greg Wittmer is a normal person.
  • Speaker 3
    0:38:22

    And so is Abigail Spamberger and Alyssa Slakin and Mikey Sheryl, and they’ve got this whole bench now. Where But you know what? Those people have got to come out and become surrogates for this Democratic party and show people what the future of the Democratic party it looks like because otherwise it’s gonna be Gavin Newsom, and I don’t like Gavin Newsom. So that’s about me. That’s a me problem, but I’m just saying, like, there’s a much better version of the Democratic party to show.
  • Speaker 3
    0:38:51

    There’s a future case to make. And contrasting that with Marjorie Taylor Green and Lauren Bobert and Matt Gates and Tommy Tuberville and the future of the Republican Party That contrast can get pretty stark, pretty fast if you show it to people. And so there is gonna be no organizing tool like Donald Trump back in the public eye. But media, if you’re listening, show Trump in all his glory, voters need to see it. Alright.
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:21

    So we’re gonna bump up against time, but I do wanna do a little philosophical. What happens next? Right? So we’re gonna I mean, you know, we’re gonna I’m
  • Speaker 3
    0:39:31

    gonna eat lunch.
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:32

    Yeah. We’re gonna hit an inflection point in eight months. Where one of three things will happen. Right? Donald Trump will win the election fair and square, become president, one, you know, one pathway.
  • Speaker 1
    0:39:46

    Joe Biden will win the election and will wind up sworn in again. After whatever happens because I just assume that, like, you know, there will be challenges again. There will be stop Stop the seal two will be much better organized than stop the seal one. And the third option is that Biden wins, and then the election results overturned possibly through legal means. Right?
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:14

    I mean, we we would we would say illegitimate, but perfectly like there are you could send alternate slates of electors, which created confusion, And then the electoral account reform act is taken before the Supreme Court to see, you know, really how much power do they have? Are they allowed to I’m saying is you have to squint a little bit, but not not all that much. So my question to you guys is where do these three pathways lead And if you wind up on one of the two pathways where Trump loses, is there a line that Republicans won’t cross. Is there Mike? Is there Mike Pence?
  • Speaker 1
    0:40:53

    The great American hero. And I’m serious about that. Don’t I’ll I will fight anybody who wants to talk bad about Mike Pence. Is is there anybody is there any force for that left in the party? So there, go ahead.
  • Speaker 1
    0:41:09

    So you do your thing and then I’ll make everybody wanna hang themselves before they go to lunch.
  • Speaker 2
    0:41:14

    So so I think that, I wanna end on a high note for me, which is that I just believe that Nikki Haley who is a through and through phony, because I didn’t do my Nikki Haley, South Carolina thing. It doesn’t matter what she’s doing in this race, the fact that people are giving her money to injure Trump for the general election matters to me and the cause. She is finally speaking the truth. She cannot back away from it. And I don’t believe she’s gonna endorse Trump.
  • Speaker 2
    0:41:46

    And Tim and JBL and Sarah all think she will And that’s fine. Oh, no. I
  • Speaker 3
    0:41:50

    Okay. A thirty five percent chance she won’t.
  • Speaker 2
    0:41:52

    Okay. So I’m really I I’m I’m clinging to this now that she’s not going to. And whether she believes that there is in the event of a Trump defeat, a revival of some kind of new, you know, a a boomerang and Republicans finally saying, once again, with Trump, we lose. And she, at that point, is better situated than Ron DeSantis. She believes that that she’s the peel she’s the champion of the peel off faction.
  • Speaker 2
    0:42:21

    I believe that there will I wanna I wanna hope that Senator John Thune, and senator John Cornin, and people will stand up if Trump loses, and we’re in to stop the steel professional version. Stand up and say, I’m out. I’m done. Actually, this election was as safe and legal as the and secure and legal as the last one and I’m really done this time. We know there will be many who don’t.
  • Speaker 2
    0:42:46

    We know what Elise is gonna do. We know how many people are gonna run around. And lie about this vance, all these people. I am hoping there’s this tiny crusty slice of what was the establishment and Paul Ryan will be one of them now, who say this is, this is bull, and I’m, and I’m, I’m out. I don’t know that means that there is any hope for that separate from a real, rump group turning into the next Republican Party.
  • Speaker 2
    0:43:15

    The next Republican Party is trumpest, I mean, the, you know, the, the, the post defeat Trump Republican Party remains trumpest, and I don’t, I don’t believe that that means anything, but I used so hope there are a few that, that just say, I’m, I’m done once he starts, you know, stopping this deal.
  • Speaker 3
    0:43:38

    This is why nobody can get tired. This is why nobody can decide that, like, I don’t know. I’m just, a pox on both their houses. I don’t really feel like dealing with it. Sometimes when I, like, really wanna Just ruined my own day.
  • Speaker 3
    0:43:50

    I sit there and I’m like, who would trump’s cabinet be this time? Yeah. I know. I called JBL. But I just do, like, Trump’s fantasy cabinet John Eisman, who tried to overturn the last election, would probably be the head of the justice department, right?
  • Speaker 3
    0:44:05

    And With Jeff Bulwark. With Jeff Clark. Right? So all the people who tried to overturn it, like, the mattresses, the the Kelly’s, the everybody who kept the thing on the rails last time. Nobody’s joining the administration again to do that.
  • Speaker 3
    0:44:18

    Right? Who he chooses as his vice president? Is not gonna be Mike Pence or somebody who says, and by the way, just in your scenario, Kamala Harris is the vice president, which makes it much harder to do one of these, like, alternative slates of electors stealing things this time around, so just FYI in that scenario. But I don’t think people are sufficiently alarmed about what a second Trump, I don’t think it’s just American carnage all over again, because I think that there’s a bunch of people, you talk about burning the boats in the good way, like Nikki Haley, I think is kind of doing. There’s burning the boats in the bad way, right, where these guys are like, I’m riding this trump thing until the end, and I’m gonna get my cool big position, and I’m gonna do whatever I want.
  • Speaker 3
    0:44:56

    I’m gonna punish my enemies, and, like, we’re all getting audited in this room if trump is the person.
  • Speaker 2
    0:45:04

    At minimum.
  • Speaker 3
    0:45:05

    At minimum. And so I sort of try to hold anytime I feel tired, I hold those scenarios in my head. To think about just how bad it could be. And the thing is is it’s not just most of the people in Congress who would have stood up to him the last time, They’re gone. They’ve all been run out.
  • Speaker 3
    0:45:26

    There is Brad Raffensberger in Georgia. They’re Steven Richard in Maricopa County, in Arizona, there’s I mean, Kemp, you could in Georgia, you could probably count on to do the right thing. In fact, I’m sure you could. But, like, It is a dwindling number of people that will stand up and so, like, that’s why it is on us to do the hard things in this moment and push one more time, except he’ll be the twenty twenty eight nominee too, probably, but let’s push one more time.
  • Speaker 1
    0:45:59

    Alright. You know what? That was so good. That as my my gift to all of you, I won’t tell you why she’s wrong and that we’re all doomed. Alright.
  • Speaker 1
    0:46:12

    Heath, thank you very much, Guy. Thank you for coming out to the show. We really appreciate it.
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