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I served in the US Navy from 2002-08; four of those years were as a Nuclear Propulsion Operator aboard an aircraft carrier. I engage in political activism in various Democratic circles when I am able to. I have a cat, and I am an uncle.

All opinions that I express are my own and do not reflect the views of any organization that I represent.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Tonight is not just the final general election presidential debate but the final presidential debate involving one of the two parties until we start talking about 2020 which will likely be sometime in the second half of 2019.

Both Clinton and Trump have to make their closing arguments at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas to the few remaining undecided voters there are out there on why they should be the next president.

Based on the previous debates and the news surrounding Donald Trump, all Clinton has to do is show up to the debate. As it was in the first debate, Clinton noted with confidence that not only did she prepare for this debate but she also prepared to be president. In the second debate, she ran through in the time allotted on why she was qualified for the job highlighting her time as senator and Secretary of State.

If I was Clinton, I would embrace the progress made under Obama given that his approvals are near what they were during the first year of his presidency.

Obama’s change message was about moving the country forward towards improving the country living up to the first three words of the Constitution, “We the people…”

Trump’s change is about moving the country backwards towards moments in our history that we romanticize but in reality for many others – specifically women, blacks, immigrants, religious minorities, gays, etc. – were not that great and at many instances the Constitution excluded either explicitly or implicitly due to the social graces of the time period.

Fox News’ Chris Wallace is the moderator so it will be expected that it might not be a favorable environment for her. I expect that Wallace could ask her more questions about the recent WikiLeaks e-mail dump specifically conversations about her vice-presidential selection list and speeches given to Wall Street in the interim period between leaving the State Department and announcing her candidacy.

Again, these e-mail dumps cannot be independently verified and are likely doctored by the Russian government in order to sow seeds of doubt about our election process.

Recently the Ecuadorian embassy in London where Julian Assange is hiding out in due to evading a possible sexual assault charge in Sweden cut his internet access. So take that with a grain of salt and understand that Russia, Assange, and others have an apparent agenda.

Speaking about Trump… what can really be said…

In the time period between the second debate and tonight, Trump has turned on his party and in return the Republican Party is abandoning him in droves in order to save their collective asses their majority in Congress and in other downballot races. The polls and odds I see are showing that it is likely the Senate will flip back to the Democrats while the House could theoretically be in play.

He is also echoing attacks on our institutions such as the press, and the electoral process claiming the dangerous rhetoric that the vote will be rigged and encouraging his supporters to monitor polling places in highly urbanized areas on Election Day.

That is code for voter intimidation plain and simple.

Over the last few days, polling has indicated that Clinton is gaining on Trump in reliably red states such as Arizona, Georgia, and even Texas. Due to a third-party candidate and a sizeable Mormon population that rejected Trump in the primary, Utah could make history by either going for a Democrat for the first time since 1964 or a third-party candidate collecting electoral votes since 1968.

Either way the Clinton campaign is pouring resources into states once thought to be off-limits to her at this point in the campaign. Georgia looks promising with many people showing up to early vote in Atlanta. A pathway into Arizona could help Ann Kirkpatrick unseat long incumbent John McCain. I cannot see a scenario where Clinton wins Missouri or Indiana, but senate races in those states are competitive and could aid the Democrats in recapturing the majority and make Speaker Paul Ryan’s fears come true.

The only way I can see Trump make a historic comeback never seen before in modern polling is if Trump actually put a reasonable effort into debate preparation combined with Clinton absolutely tanking the final debate a la the recent incarnation of the Philadelphia 76ers.

Then in the final 20 days, Trump and Clinton basically switch bodies like in Freaky Friday or Vice Versa followed by a massive polling error that grossly underestimated Trump’s supporters and lower turnout among the Obama coalition that returns the electoral demographics to what they were in the 1980s.

And honestly, Trump is out of time. The early voting period has begun in many states. I have received my ballot here in Colorado and will be filling it out once I have looked over a couple of the ballot initiatives.

Trump has no get-out-the-vote operation and an absence of any staff in key battleground states. His campaign basically conceded Virginia to Clinton by pulling out and is effectively running a four state operation in Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and North Carolina. He has to win all four of those states or it is over and so far, the polls are not kind to him there.

Trump recently made two stops in Colorado, Colorado Springs and Grand Junction. Too bad since 1) a majority of the Colorado population is situated in the Denver-Boulder metro area, and 2) the recent Real Clear Polling Average has Clinton up 7 in this state.

Once again, did I mention I got my ballot in the mail yesterday and there is a coordinated effort by the Clinton campaign and the Colorado Democratic Party to get people to return their ballots in as soon as possible. I am curious about what efforts are there by the Republicans to start building their voter bank in competitive states or if there is one by them at all.

In closing, this long campaign is about to end. It is time for both candidates to make their closing arguments to us, the voters, and we will render our verdict on 8 November about what kind of country we want to live in.

The choice is ours
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