Around the fire, a punch-druk John Kasich becomes inexplicably hostile to Nick Adams.
Confirming your uncle’s Facebook theories, John Kasich and Ted Cruz have agreed to stay out of each other’s ways in Indian, Oregon and New Mexico, in an effort to prevent Donald Trump from winning the Republican nomination outright. Cruz gets Indiana, where he’s polling eight points behind Trump but lags by only two if Kasich leaves the race. Kasich gets a new blanket and a can of soup, and Citizens United v. FEC gets even more laughable in its ban on “coordination” between Super PACs and campaigns. Quote:
Both campaigns said they expected allies and third-party groups to follow their lead, and a representative from the “super PAC” supporting Mr. Kasich confirmed late Sunday that it would not advertise in Indiana.
That’s a totally independent group of citizen activists, right there, independently suspending their advocacy in order to adhere to a deal struck between two campaigns. But will it work?
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Lindsey Graham ran for president this year, and it didn’t go great. He ended up one of a dozen candidates knocked out by a celebrity clown and the most hated man in the Senate, and here lies American democracy in 2016. It’s a situation that invites frank assessment—something from which senators refrain on an almost professional basis. But as Miracle Mike Sebba recently pointed out to me, Graham seems to have embraced honesty. Here he is publicly reversing his position on Apple vs. FBI. Here he is declining the opportunity to pledge his support to the eventual nominee. And here he is at the Washington Press Club dinner, complaining that his party has gone “batshit crazy.” Together, these brushstrokes paint a much more likable Senator Graham. Maybe that’s because he more closely agrees with my politics now. But maybe it’s because he’s finally speaking candidly.
Arthur Digby Sellers in his iron lung
History will be made today, and I’m not just talking about this blog’s most obscure Lebowski reference. I’m talking about Super Tuesday—the finest Tuesday in the land, after Taco Tuesday, when 11 states hold their primaries and determine who is a viable candidate and who is Ben Carson. This year’s Super Tuesday is especially exciting. On one side of the aisle, the Democratic Party is poised to nominate either the first woman or the first socialist Jew. Which will it be? The woman, because she hasn’t threatened to disrupt the richest industry in America. But maybe something surprising will happen, and the socialist Jew will catch up.
The Republican nominating contest is even more thrilling. Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are locked in a game of chicken, but it’s the kind of chicken where you both drive toward a cliff. Ben Carson is locked in a refrigerator at the dump. And Donald Trump, the billionaire reality TV star who announced his candidacy by calling America’s largest immigrant population “drug dealers and rapists” at a mall, is poised to destroy the Republican Party. Unless my dad finds a genie and causes John Kasich to win all eleven states, today is probably the day Trump clinches the nomination. Our outcomes from there are soft fascism, woman president and/or third party.
Today is a watershed no matter what happens. We’ve talked a lot about politics this year, and I keep making secret plans to knock it off after this election is over. You’ll notice, if you look at the most popular posts widget to your left, that none of them is about politics. But god dammit, this is the weirdest election of my lifetime. It’s way weirder than 2012. Whatever happens today, tomorrow is going to look a lot like history.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
Normally Combat! blog does not stoop to publishing on federal holidays, and today our great nation honors its longest-armed and woodiest-toothed presidents. But this weekend was so exciting that one must remark. On Saturday, the Republican candidates tore into one another like a sack of weasels, raising the question of which one of these men, exactly, could lead his party through its most fractious historical moment since the Grant administration. Will Trump unite monied interests, neoconservative hawks and alienated tea party voters with his platform of turning red and calling people losers? Maybe the GOP will rally behind Ted Cruz, the most hated man in the Senate. Your fallback option to heal the party is Marco Rubio, who would like to dispense once and for all with this idea that Obama SYNTAX ERR 403 REBOOT? Y/N. Meanwhile, Jeb is betting on the overwhelming popularity of his brother. The question of who might win this contest of undesirables seemed academic until Saturday, when Antonin Scalia was found dead at a west Texas resort.
The image above comes to us from the Frinkiac, a searchable database of the first 15 seasons of The Simpsons that matches lines of dialogue with frames from the episodes in which they appear. I think we can agree it’s the best thing that ever happened to Combat! blog, except for maybe Sarah Palin. We live in a golden age of memes, some of them pure and good but others products of our hideously mutual delusions. Today is Friday, and the internet is full of perfectly cromulent words. Won’t you remember a time before you moved to Springfield with me?