Thursday, December 31, 2015

Massive growth of North Pole ice in 2015. Arctic Sea Ice Extent, higher than 30% ice concentration, December 30, 2015, DMI

12/30/15, "Arctic Sea Ice Extent," Higher than 30% ice concentration, Danish Meteorological Institute 


"Current Sea Ice extent"

"Total sea ice extent on the northern hemisphere since 2005. The ice extent values are calculated from the ice type data from the Ocean and Sea Ice, Satellite Application Facility (OSISAF), where areas with ice concentration higher than 30% are classified as ice.

The total area of sea ice is the sum of First Year Ice (FYI), Multi Year Ice (MYI) and the area of ambiguous ice types, from the OSISAF ice type product. However, the total estimated ice area is underestimated due to unclassified coastal regions where mixed land/sea pixels confuse the applied ice type algorithm. The shown sea ice extent values are therefore recommended be used qualitatively in relation to ice extent values from other years shown in the figure....

Please notice, that the sea ice extent in this plot is calculated with the coastal zones masked out. To see the absolute extent, go to this page."...


Donald Trump tied with Pope Francis for 2nd place as most admired man in world, Gallup 2015 poll. Poll dates, Dec. 2-6, 2015, 824 American adults-Rolling Stone


12/28/15, "Donald Trump, Pope Francis Tie in 'Most Admired Man' Gallup Poll," Rolling Stone, Tessa Stuart

"The Gallup polls, which have been taken for both genders every year since 1948, asks respondents, "What woman or man that you have heard or read about, living today in any part of the world, do you admire most?""... 

Image caption: 12/28/15, "Donald Trump and Pope Francis tied for second in a new Gallup poll for most admired people in the world Franco Origlia/Getty, Justin Sullivan/Getty," via Rolling Stone
12/28/15, "Clinton Most Admired Woman for Record 20th Time,", Jeffrey M. Jones

"Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Dec. 2-6, 2015, with a random sample of 824 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 60% cellphone respondents and 40% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods." Chart above from


Monday, December 28, 2015

Brazil was #1 African slave importer in western hemisphere though only one book on this topic has been written in English. Continued tolerance allows modern slavery to thrive today in Brazil especially In rural areas where it's closely linked to illegal deforestation-Financial Times

“Culturally, Brazil is accustomed to tolerating conditions of labour in rural areas that amount to slavery.” Feb. 2015: "This is the first book in English to focus on African heritage and public memory of slavery in Brazil and Angola."

Above, African slave trade flowed from Angola to Brazil up to 1860s. map,

"It is now common knowledge among scholars of slavery that Brazil imported the largest number of enslaved Africans during the Atlantic slave trade era."..."African Heritage and Memories of Slavery in Brazil and the South Atlantic World by Ana Lucia Araujo," cambria press, Ana Lucia Araujo, Feb. 2015.
Dec. 2015, "FT Seasonal Appeal: Brazil’s slaves face death threats and debt," Financial Times, Joseph Leahy in Altamira, Pará, Brazil

"We live here like slaves,” Paulo Ferreira says in his slow country drawl, as he remembers how he toiled in the Amazon this year for no pay. He slept in a makeshift wooden shelter and drank water from a spring clogged with cattle manure. He is 67-years-old.

Mr Ferreira, whose name has been changed for his own protection, is far from alone. A legion of forced labourers in Brazil has cleared vast stretches of the forest for cattle pasture, helping the region’s more unscrupulous ranchers grow rich....
On the far-flung ranch where Mr Ferreira recently worked for three months he had no choice but to buy provisions from the rancher — no town was conveniently near. He built up a debt so large it became impossible for him to leave.

When payday came, his boss gave him no wages, saying his labours had been just enough to cover the debt. Complaining was not an option. “If a labourer tries to denounce a rancher to the authorities, he will be killed,” Mr Ferreira observes.

The idea that slavery still exists touches a raw nerve in Brazil. The country imported 4m African slaves during its first 400 years of history — 40 per cent of the total brought to the [western hemisphere] Americas, compared with 10 per cent for the US. It was the last large nation in the hemisphere to end slavery: abolition came only in 1888.

“This is a country still struggling to break with its past of slavery, a past still present in our society,” says Ubiratan Cazetta, a public prosecutor in Pará. In fact, he and others argue, the battle against the trade is becoming more difficult....
"Modern slavery in the Amazon is intimately linked with illegal deforestation, a notorious contributor to climate change. Typically, a middleman recruits labourers from Piauí and Maranhão, the country’s two poorest states, and persuades them to travel hundreds of kilometres away on bad roads to Pará, with the promise of high wages.

Like Mr Ferreira, many labourers soon find themselves crippled by debt, because they have no capital of their own, often having to borrow just to make the long journey to the ranch, as well as for provisions.

Most labourers do not dare to leave the farm or try to escape their growing debts. Although 24-hour armed guards are now rare on farms, crooked ranchers readily contract “pistoleiros”, local hitmen, to deal with argumentative workers, prosecutors and activists say. And when the authorities carry out raids to stop illegal logging, the ranchers themselves often disappear, leaving their forced labourers to take the heat.

The business model has proved remarkably resilient. Slavery has been in the spotlight in Brazil for a generation and yet it persists.

An initial crackdown began after the experiences of Zé Pereira, a labourer who in 1989 was lured to a ranch in Pará where he was imprisoned and forced to work without pay. He escaped, was ambushed and left for dead — but somehow survived and managed to file an official complaint.

In the ensuing outcry, the government began to publish a blacklist of farms accused of using slave labour. Those on the list were automatically blocked from government credit or business with state agencies.

But Mr Cazetta, the prosecutor in Pará, complains that the problem has worsened again over the past 10 years as the ranchers and the agricultural lobby have fought back. The Brazilian supreme court has halted the blacklisting of farms and businesses that allegedly use slave labour, arguing that the list’s publication violates the right of defence of those named.

“Resistance has become a lot more sophisticated,” Mr Cazetta says. Culturally, Brazil is accustomed to tolerating conditions of labour in rural areas that amount to slavery."

Along the Transamazonian highway, the same road that snakes past Mr Ferreira’s unadorned house, there is no shortage of cases showing that slavery endures.
In one incident last year, a 22-year-old from Maranhão disappeared just after ringing his mother to tell her he was due to be paid and was about to come home. A month later a cowboy riding by saw vultures circling in the distance. On closer inspection he found the corpse.

Local Catholic activists have long lists of such crimes which, as in this case, often go without proper investigation.

They also worry that a recent decline in slavery in Pará may soon be reversed. For the past four to five years, unskilled labour in the region has had an alternative, much more attractive source of employment — the Belo Monte project, a giant hydropower dam near the city of Altamira. But the construction work is scheduled to end in the coming months. That will release thousands of people desperate for work back on to the market.

Faced with utter destitution, many of Brazil’s poorest people still take their chances and sign up for work in remote farms in the Amazon — despite the debts, the threats and the risk of forced labour.

It is a desperate choice that Paulo Ferreira and his family are all too familiar with. “Otherwise how will we live?” asks Maria, the daughter-in-law of the weather-beaten worker. “By eating the walls of our homes?”...

For this year’s seasonal appeal, the Financial Times is working in partnership with Stop The Traffik, an organisation that raises awareness about human trafficking."... 


Oct. 2012, UK Guardian article: 40% of Rio population was slaves in 1888, the year slavery was abolished in Brazil. 
10/23/2012, "Brazil comes to terms with its slave trading past," UK Guardian, Nicolas Bourcier 

"Groundworks for the 2016 Olympics bring questions of ethnicity to the surface." ..........

"Just a step from the centre of Rio de Janeiro, at the heart of the docks undergoing a massive facelift in preparation for the 2016 Olympics, two workers await the verdict of three archaeologists at the bottom of a trench. Municipal workers have once again stumbled on the remains of the Valongo wharf, where the largest number of slaves imported to the [western hemisphere]...disembarked....A place of suffering long buried under the paving stones of this dazzling city....

Work on the wharf has also revealed the scale of the slave trade in Brazil. Of the 9.5 million people captured in Africa and brought to the New World between the 16th and 19th century, nearly 4 million landed in Rio, 10 times more than all those sent to the United States.

But for the last century Brazil has tried to forget its past, refusing to accept the legacy of the slave trade."...

Image of Feb. 2015 book cover from


Brazil population is over 205 million as of 2015.


Brazil on world map, copyright


Brazil comprises 3,287,597 square miles of total area.

The US 50 states comprise 3,717,792 square miles
. ...........  


India PM says Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border; when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut-Press Trust of India

12/25/15, "Afghanistan Will Succeed When Terror No Longer Flows Across Border: PM Modi," Press Trust of India,, Kabul

"In a veiled attack against Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border and when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut.

Declaring that India is in Afghanistan to contribute not to compete, but to lay the foundations of future and not light the flame of conflict.

"Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border; when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut; and, their patrons are no longer in business, he said, adding, "Terror and violence cannot be the instrument to shape Afghanistan's future or dictate the choices Afghans make," he said.

The Prime Minister was addressing the Afghan Parliament here after inaugurating its swanky new building that was built by India at a cost of nearly Rs. 600 crore (USD 90 million) in the presence of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

He also opened an 'Atal block' in the Parliament premises named after former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee whose 91st birthday fell today.

In his nearly 40-minute address during which he was lustily cheered by the assembled audience on several occasions, PM Modi also made a veiled reference to Pakistan's reservations about Indian involvement in Afghanistan, saying, "there are some who do not want us to be here".

PM Modi said, "There are some who did not want us to be here. There were those who saw sinister designs in our presence here. There are others who were uneasy at the strength of our partnership. Some even tried to discourage us."

PM Modi saluted people of Afghanistan for having faith in India and not judge by what others tell them, including about the mysterious Indian consulates, in another veiled dig at Pakistan.

"You never doubted the sincerity of our commitment and the strength of our friendship. And, you have seen the fruits of our partnership," he said, adding, "You have judged us by what you see, not what others tell you, including about the mysterious Indian consulates."

Pakistan has long alleged that India was fomenting trouble in its Balochistan province through Indian consulates in Kandahar and Jalalabad.

"You know that India is here to contribute not to compete; to lay the foundations of future, not light the flame of conflict; to rebuild lives, not destroy a nation," PM Modi said."



Map of India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, from


Sunday, December 27, 2015

Home in New Hampshire for the holidays, Beltway Republican discovers Trump voters are real-Politico Playbook, Allen

12/26/15, "POLITICO Playbook, presented by Abbott – D.C. REPUBLICANS go home for holidays, discover Trump voters are real," Mike Allen,

"A Republican Playbooker who lives in D.C. is back home in New Hampshire for the week: “Driving around the state’s capital [Concord] (which is more heavily Democrat than Republican) notice...lots of visible support for Bernie: lawn signs and bumper stickers. There are signs of support for Hillary too, but Bernie appears to be winning the passion race, if nothing else. A smattering of Ben Carson signs placed only at busy intersections. More paid media from Right to Rise [Bush PAC] than anyone. 

I asked my folks, all longtime supporters of establishment Republicans, who they're backing: Trump. When you try to advocate for more traditional candidates, they dig in more for Trump (whose Christmas card is kept in a place of honor).”"...


Saturday, December 26, 2015

Romney refused to spend any of his own money to beat Obama in 2012. 'More Republicans may start to ask how committed he is to winning the race if he won’t put his own money on the line.'-Reuters, Sept. 2012

Sept. 2012 article: "More Republicans may start to ask how committed he is to winning the race if he won’t put his own money on the line." Desperately needed in swing states like Virginia, Ohio, and Florida, Romney left the trail to raise money, having said it would be "akin to a nightmare" to use his own funds:

9/25/2012, Why doesn’t Mitt Romney contribute to his own campaign?Reuters, Michael Waldman

"Lately, Mitt Romney has been so consumed with fundraising that his aides have had to defend his absence from the stump. Like his foe, the Republican nominee is in the midst of a frenzied financial arms race. But one hugely wealthy individual has not yet been persuaded to part with much cash to support the Republican cause: Mitt Romney himself....

Romney, for whatever reason, has failed to use his personal wealth to pay his campaign’s bills. His refusal to self-finance is one of the mysteries of this campaign.

After all, if Romney were to help fund his own bid, he would have ample company. In 1976, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that it would violate the First Amendment to limit what candidates can spend on their own behalf. Ever since, wealthy office-seekers commonly have ponied up. John Kerry lent more than $6 million to fund his Iowa caucus drive in 2003. Hillary Clinton lent her campaign over $11 million four years later. Steve Forbes gave his 1996 campaign $32 million, and spent nearly $37 million four years after that. Ross Perot spent $63 million to finish strongly in 1992, back when that was real money.

In fact, four years ago [2008] the former governor gave his own campaign nearly $45 million. He even donated a Winnebago trailer.  “I’m not beholden to any particular group for getting me into this race or for getting me elected,” ABC News quoted him as saying. “My family, that’s the only one I’m really beholden to — they’re the ones who let their inheritance slip away, dollar by dollar.”

The Romney boys can sleep easy: Their dad’s assets are worth nearly $250 million, according to financial disclosure forms. But he has put only $150,000 into this year’s run, through a joint gift with his wife Ann to a Republican committee last spring.

Romney’s campaign surely could use the money. His summer fundraising was less robust than it appeared, since much of it was committed to party committees not controlled by him. His campaign borrowed $20 million as a “bridge” loan to keep ads on the air before the general election began. Even the super PACs have less on hand now than seemed likely just a few months ago. His strategist Ed Gillespie bemoaned the time Romney must spend fundraising. “I don’t think anybody considers Utah to be on the target state list, but it was an important event for us,” he said of a recent fundraiser held in Salt Lake City, according to BuzzFeed....

For his part, he (Romney) has fretted publicly that spending his own funds would be “akin to a nightmare.”...

Also, his money may not be easy to access. We know that much of it is tied up in offshore accounts and complex tax-driven trusts....

A large gift could open him to the charge he is trying to buy the presidency. That seems unlikely, though....

Individuals and corporations can give unlimited sums to super PACs so long as they pretend not to coordinate with candidates....Billionaires such as Sheldon Adelson now sponsor candidates as if they were racehorses. Mitt Romney might find himself just as surprised as anyone at how his own campaign seems less flush than it seemed just a few weeks ago, with initiative and power flowing to the purportedly independent groups that now constitute a de facto Republican Party....

To be clear, pity is not in order. Romney and the Republicans have plenty of money. But his reluctance must rankle some donors who are being asked to give substantial sums. As the campaign lunges toward the finish, more Republicans may start to ask how committed he is to winning the race if he won’t put his own money on the line." 


Sept. 24, 2012,  Romney absent from battleground states in the stretch:

9/24/2012, "The Romney Campaign Is Sick Of Fundraising," BuzzFeed, McKay Coppins. "But they still need cash!"

"In a conference call with reporters Monday morning, senior Romney adviser Ed Gillespie was asked why Mitt Romney doesn’t spend more time holding public campaign events. His response was unusually blunt: They need more money. 

“He has been doing a lot of events, but a lot of them have been fundraising events,” Gillsepie said.....

He went on to bemoan the time they’ve had to spend in non-swing states, rather than stumping in places like Virginia, Ohio, and Florida

“I don’t think anybody considers Utah to be on the target state list, but it was an important event for us,” Gillespie said of a recent fundraiser held in Salt Lake City. He said they hoped to soon have enough money
in their campaign coffers to carry them through November 6th....

Gillespie’s comments, coupled with Romney’s defense of his light campaign schedule in a gaggle with reporters Sunday, could be read as an effort to telegraph a need for more money from reluctant donors. Recent reports have suggested that Romney’s campaign may be in a weaker financial position than some thought. And with polls showing the Republican trailing in key battleground states, some wealthy donors may be weighing their likely return on investment as they hesitate to write checks.

Meanwhile, Romney has blamed the need for more fundraising on President Obama’s decision to ditch the federal campaign finance system in 2008."


August 2012 article re: Romney staff:

8/11/2012, "Rep. Paul Ryan VP Choice Draws Criticism From Some Conservatives," Huffington Post, Howard Fineman

"It's important to remember that Romney's top campaign staff were Charlie Crist's political staff....It was no surprise when I read in the New Republic that Mitt's chief strategist told folks he voted for Obama in 2008."...(near end of article, subhead, 'Concluding thoughts')


Thursday, December 24, 2015

NPR in 2011 on occasion of Geraldine Ferraro's death said she was 'schlonged' when she lost 1984 election badly. Chris Cillizza reply: 'Absolutely historic moment, Neal, but as you point out, lost 49 states'


12/23/15, "NPR in 2011: Geraldine Ferraro was 'schlonged'," by Thomas Lifson, American Thinker

"Where was the outrage? When Donald Trump used the expression “schlonged” to indicate Hillary Clinton was badly defeated at the polls, he was roundly condemned by practically all media, and most television broadcasters went so far as to bleep the word out when running a recording of his use of the term in a speech.
But as even liberal Jeff Greenfield noted in a tweet:
On further review, Trump is right on this. "I got schlonged" is a commonplace NY way of saying: "I lost big time," w/out genital reference....
As Dan Riehl noted in a tweet...NPR...used the word schlonged" to describe a devastating [1984] election defeat of liberal and feminist icon Geraldine Ferraro, in an obituary following her death in 2011, and there was nary a peep of outrage, much less universal condemnation....

Host Neal Conan said to guest Chris Cillizza and drew not a peep of condemnation from the prominent WaPo writer: 

"Sad news to report from this past weekend. Geraldine Ferraro died of blood cancer at the age of 75, the three-term congresswoman from Queens, the first woman to run for vice president of the United States in 1984, the first woman on a major party ticket to do so...And Chris Cillizza, that ticket went on to get schlonged at the polls, but that's a historic moment.""...

""Mr. CILLIZZA: Absolutely historic moment, Neal, but as you point out, lost 49 states. The only state that that ticket won, which was led by Walter Mondale, was his home state of Minnesota....

So groundbreaking in its way, but one fascinating tidbit: We still don’t have a woman president, and we had a female, obviously, nominee, with Hillary Clinton, and she lost the nomination.""...

Above image of Geraldine Ferraro from AP, via 12/23/15, "NPR used 'schlonged' to describe Geraldine Ferraro in 2011," Breitbart, Joel Pollak

March 30, 2011, NPR discussion with Washington Post political reporter Chris Cillizza.


Added: Mondale and Ferraro were defeated in 1984 by incumbents Reagan and Bush. As someone said, what difference would it make?


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

More than 7000 rally for Trump in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Dec. 21, 2015

Trump rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., 12/21/15

As Trump takes stage in Michigan, 12/21/15

12/21/15, Trump rally, Grand Rapids, Getty

More than 7,000 rally for Trump in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

12/21/15, "Trump takes on trade policy, 'losers' in Grand Rapids," Detroit Free Press, Kathleen Gray, Lansing Bureau, Grand Rapids

"Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump came to Michigan Monday, taking aim at everything from U.S. trade policy, a budget deal reached in Congress last week, his challengers in the race for president and the "losers" in the crowd who repeatedly disrupted his hour-long speech.

"The American dream is dead, but I’m going to make it bigger and better and stronger," he told a crowd of more than 7,000 at the DeltaPlex Arena in Grand Rapids. "This isn’t the real silent majority. It’s a very loud, very aggressive, noisy majority."

The vast majority of the crowd, many of whom stood in the rain for hours for the chance to see Trump, loved his message, repeatedly chanting his name. The chants of "U.S.A.!" especially grew when nearly a dozen people interrupted the speech with anti-Trump slogans....

Waiting in rain to see Trump, 12/21/15

"Mexico is going to become the car capital of the world, just you watch," he said, adding he'll place a 35% tax on cars coming into the United States, even vehicles made by domestic automakers outside the country. "And if you wait another day, it's going to be 40%."...

As for the protesters, Trump urged security to "be nice" to them as they removed them from the arena....

Trump rally, 12/21/15

The visit was Trump’s second to Michigan since he announced his presidential aspirations in June. He came to Birch Run for a rally with 2,000 supporters in August.

Trump has been leading in the polls almost continuously since entering the race despite controversial statements against Mexicans, Muslims and the other candidates."...


1. Image caption 12/21/15: "Crowds of people gather to attend presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign rally at the DeltaPlex in Grand Rapids on Monday, Dec. 21, 2015. (Emily Rose Bennett | The Grand Rapids Press)"

2. Image caption: 12/21/15, "People take photos and video as Donald Trump takes the stage at his presidential campaign rally at the DeltaPlex Arena in Walker on Monday, Dec. 21, 2015. (Neil Blake |" 

3. Image caption 12/21/15, Donald Trump campaigns in Grand Rapids, Michigan, getty photo

4. Image caption: 12/21/15, From Kathy Gray, "It's wet and gloomy in grand rapids but the line is long for @realDonaldTrump," Detroit Free Press, Kathy Gray

5. Image caption 12/21/15, for "All I want for Christmas is to Make America Great Again"..." sign: "Riki gheller came all the way from flint for @realDonaldTrump rally,"  Detroit Free Press, Kathy Gray


12/21/15, "Donald Trump Campaigns In Grand Rapids,", Getty image


12/21/15, "20 best photos from Donald Trump's Michigan campaign visit,", by Matt Vande Bunte, Walker, Mich.


Sunday, December 20, 2015

How Donald Trump solved government gridlock after six years and millions of tax dollars wasted: Lessons of Wollman Rink ought not be forgotten-NY Times Editorial, November 13, 1986

11/13/1986, "Lessons of the Wollman Rink," NY Times Editorial
"New York City bungled the job of reopening Central Park's Wollman Skating Rink for six years, wasting millions. Then last June, city officials said it would take two more years to correct the mistakes and complete the job. 

He made his point: today the rink reopens for skaters, three weeks ahead of schedule and $750,000 under projected cost. The whole affair ought to reopen discussion of laws governing city construction contracts. 

Mr. Trump's achievement required skirting the spirit if not the letter of New York State's archaic Wicks Law, which bars use of a general contractor for public works costing more than $50,000. The state and localities must seek separate bids for construction, plumbing, electrical, heating and ventilation work. Agencies like the Parks Department or Board of Education, with little expertise, are left to coordinate the work. 

Though intended to increase competition and reduce building costs, the Wicks Law does the opposite. The inevitable conflicts and delays caused by multiple contracting scare off responsible bidders, while inviting shoddy work, cost overruns and endless litigation. The city estimates that the law costs the taxpayers $100 million annually. 

Yet the State Legislature, responding to union pressure, refused to act last session on Governor Cuomo's proposal to repeal the law and allow the city to use general contractors. Meanwhile, the city isn't helpless. It could be setting tougher requirements for bidders and making more use of experienced project managers for complex jobs. 

As the skaters glide again against the backdrop of the midtown skyline, the lessons of the Wollman Rink ought not to be forgotten."


Comment: "Lessons" noted by Free Republic poster

"Lesson one: Trump can get the job done. 

Lesson two: Government waste and incompetence can be fixed. 

Lesson three: Some truths are so undeniable that even The New York Times has to admit it.
Lesson four: Try as you may, you cannot erase history."


Cedar Rapids, Iowa crowd rallies for Donald Trump, Dec. 19, 2015


12/19/15, "Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the Veterans Memorial Building, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)  AP." photo via Des Moines Register, "Trump touts Iowa ground game as caucuses near," Brianne Pfannenstiel, The Des Moines Register. Trump spoke on Saturday to "a crowd of more than 1000."


Trump in Des Moines, Mon. 12/11/15:

12/11/15, "Supporters cheer during a campaign rally for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, Friday, Dec. 11, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)"

"Johnson said she did not think she would vote if Trump is not on the ballot."

12/12/15, "Trump stresses importance of winning Iowa," Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier, Rod Boshart, Des Moines

"“We want to win Iowa so bad because if we win Iowa, I think we run the table, I really do,” Trump told about 2,000 cheering Iowans who packed the Varied Industries Building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds.

“If I win Iowa, I think it’s over,” said the New York entrepreneur, who plans to be in the lead-off state “a lot” in January and on caucus day. “I love you people, remember that,” he told rally attendees, many of whom waved signs bearing the message “The silent majority stands with Trump” and wore red “Make America Great Again” caps....

Trump pounded on familiar campaign themes of building a wall along the U.S. southern border, barring Syrian refugees from entering the United States, protecting Second Amendment gun rights and criticizing Washington, D.C., incompetence....

In the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, Calif., Trump modified his theme by saying he wants to “make America great and safe again.”...

Mary Johnson of Norwalk, who came with her husband, Rick, and son, Alex, to hear Trump speak, said she planned to caucus for him Feb. 1.

“I think Trump’s got it right,” she said, noting she has attended two political rallies in her lifetime — both Trump events this year. “I think the whole politically correct stuff — he’s thrown it out the window, and he’s been real and that’s what I like. I don’t feel like he’s telling me what he thinks I want to hear. It sounds like he’s honest.”

Johnson said she did not think she would vote if Trump is not on the ballot. Asked if she thought Trump would make a good president, she said “I don’t think that he can do any worse than what we have.”"... 


Friday, December 18, 2015

Disband the Republican Party, let Democrats run it, because that's what's happening anyway. Republicans have largest number of seats in the House of Representatives they've had since the Civil War, and it hasn't made any difference at all-Rush Limbaugh, 12/17/15

12/17/15, "GOP Sells America Down the River," Rush Limbaugh 

"And now the Republicans have the largest number of seats in the House they've had in Congress since the Civil War. And it hasn't made any difference at all. It is as though Nancy Pelosi is still running the House and Harry Reid is still running the Senate.  "Betrayed" is not even the word here. What has happened here is worse than betrayal. Betrayal is pretty bad, but it's worse than that....[W]e don't even need a Republican Party if they're gonna do this. You know, just elect Democrats, disband the Republican Party, and let the Democrats run it, because that's what's happening anyway." 


GOP budget deal remembers every special interest group except the American people-Trump statement on Republican budget deal, 12/17/15


(New York, NY) December 17, 2015 – "If anyone needed more evidence of why the American people are suffering at the hands of their own government, look no further than the budget deal announced by Speaker Ryan. In order to avoid a government shutdown, a cowardly threat from an incompetent President, the elected Republicans in Congress threw in the towel and showed absolutely no budget discipline.

The American people will have to absorb higher deficits, greater debt, less economic liberty and more corporate welfare. Congress cannot seem to help itself in bending to every whim of special interests. How can they face their constituents when they continue to burden our children and grandchildren with debts they will never be able to repay? Our government is failing us, so we must do something about it. Who knows how bad things will be when the next administration comes in and has to pick up the pieces?

The only special interest not being served by our government is the American people. It is time we imposed budget discipline by holding the line on spending, getting rid of waste, fraud and abuse, and by taking on our debt. To do these things, we need a President who can lead the fight to hold Congress and the rest of government accountable. Together, we can Make America Great Again." – Donald J. Trump"



12/17/15, "GOP Sells America Down the River,"
Rush Limbaugh 

"And now the Republicans have the largest number of seats in the House they've had in Congress since the Civil War. And it hasn't made any difference at all. It is as though Nancy Pelosi is still running the House and Harry Reid is still running the Senate.  "Betrayed" is not even the word here. What has happened here is worse than betrayal. Betrayal is pretty bad, but it's worse than that....[W]e don't even need a Republican Party if they're gonna do this. You know, just elect Democrats, disband the Republican Party, and let the Democrats run it, because that's what's happening anyway."


Trump has 14 point lead in New Hampshire Franklin Pierce University Boston Herald poll, Dec. 13-17, 2015. 71% of Trump voters are firm, won't change their mind compared to 45% avg.

Trump 26.0
Cruz 12.4
Rubio 12.4
Christie 10.8
Bush 9.8
Kasich 7.5
Fiorina 6.1
Carson 4.9
Paul 2.9
Graham .4
Pataki .3
Santorum .3
Huckabee .2

430 likely New Hampshire Republican voters, 35.7 Registered Independents and 64.3 Registered Republicans. Land lines and cellphones, 4.7% error margin

12/18/15, "Donald Trump holds the frontrunner position in New Hampshire, but other outsiders drift as Chris Christie, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio gain momentum," R. Kelly Myers, Marlin Fitzwater Fellow, Franklin Pierce University

"Seventy-one percent of voters who would vote for Trump said it was a firm choice, suggesting that his support may be the most solid among the Republican candidates."...By comparison, overall only 45% of likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters describe their vote choice as firm. (p. 4)...


"The results outlined in this report are based on a survey conducted by RKM Research and Communications on behalf of Franklin Pierce University and the Boston Herald. All interviews were conducted by paid, trained and professionally supervised interviewers. The survey is based on a probabilistic sample 430 likely Republican presidential primary voters in New Hampshire. Interviews were conducted by landline and cellular telephone, December 13-17, 2015. The sampling margin of error is +/-4.7 percent."...


Monday, December 14, 2015

Trump 28, Cruz 27, Iowa Quinnipiac poll, Dec. 4-13, 2015. Live interviews with 874 likely Iowa Republican caucus goers


Trump 28
Cruz 27
Rubio 14
Carson 10
Bush 5
Paul 4
Christie 3
Fiorina 3
Huckabee 1
Kasich 1

Poll dates, Dec. 4-13, 2015. Live interviews with 874 likely Iowa Republican caucus-goers via land lines or cellphones. 3.3 error margin.

12/14/15, "New poll: Donald Trump in the lead among likely Iowa voters,", Omaha, Neb.

"A new poll shows Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz in the lead among likely Republican voters in Iowa.

According to the Quinnipiac University Poll released Monday morning, Donald Trump stands in the lead with support from 28 percent of likely Iowa Republican Caucus-goers. Sen. Cruz is a close second with 27 percent. According to a media release from Quinnipiac, Senator Marco Rubio is in third place with 14 percent, and Dr. Ben Carson has 10 percent."...


12/14/15, "Trump, Cruz leave others in the dust in Iowa GOP caucus, Quinnipiac University Poll finds; Terrorism replaces economy as top voter concern," Quinnipiac University Poll

Change from Nov. 24, 2015 Quinnipiac Iowa GOP poll, Trump up 3, Cruz up 4.

 Five items from the poll:

Q1, (second part) Quinnipiac lists 4 characteristics and asks which is the "Most important characteristic" in selecting their candidate: 

Shared values
Strong leader
Best Chance of Winning 
"Best chance of winning" takes a back seat for many respondents:  

"Best chance of winning"

Trump supporters 29 
Rubio supporters 25
Cruz supporters 15
Carson supporters 11
Paul supporters 4
Bush supporters 3
Christie supporters 3 
Fiorina supporters 3
Kasich supporters 2


Q21, Best able to handle economy:

Trump 45
Cruz 17
Rubio 8
Bush 6
Fiorina 5
Paul 5
Carson 4


Q23, Best able to handle illegal immigration?

Trump 43
Cruz 21 
Bush 4
Carson 4
Paul 3


Q. 26, Best able to handle terrorism?

Trump 33
Cruz 24
Rubio 9
Bush 8
Christie 5
Paul 4
Carson 3


Q. 77, Do you support or oppose letting Syrian refugees into the US?

Support 15%
Oppose 81%

PDF format
  Additional Trend Information

Sample and Methodology detail


Image caption: 12/11/15,  "Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a campaign rally, Friday, Dec. 11, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall) (Charlie Neibergall/AP)"