Sam Wang discusses Hillary Clinton’s post-convention bounce poll numbers, which put her ahead of Trump by anywhere from one to twelve points.
You may have been following the fallout from Trump’s reaction to Khizr and Ghazala Khan’s appearance at the DNC convention. After putting his foot in his big mouth in a George Stephanopoulos interview, Trump issued this prepared statement [emphasis added]:
“Captain Humayun Khan was a hero to our country and we should honor all who have made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country safe. The real problem here are the radical Islamic terrorist who killed him, and the efforts of these radicals to enter our country and do us further harm,” Trump said.â€œWhile I feel deeply for the loss of his son, Mr. Khan who has never met me, has no right to stand in front of millions of people and claim I have never read the Constitution, (which is false) and say many other inaccurate things. If I become President, I will make America safe again.â€
In a discussion about US policy toward Ukraine, Stephanopoulos asked Trump about his campaign operativesâ€™ successful effort to block the addition of a plank to the GOP platform that would have advocated providing lethal weapons to Ukraine to help defend against the Russian-backed insurgency in its eastern Donbas region.
Trump said, â€œI was not involvedâ€ no fewer than five times in trying to avoid the issue, which put him in direct opposition to the majority of the Republican foreign policy establishment.
It wasnâ€™t even clear that Trump knew what the change entailed until Stephanopoulos spelled it out for him and asked why he thought it was a good idea.
Trump again dodged, appearing to claim that there was no need for the weapons by arguing that Russian President Vladimir Putin wasnâ€™t going to take action against Ukraine.
â€œHe’s not going into Ukraine, OK? Just so you understand. He’s not going to go into Ukraine, all right? You can mark it down and you can put it down, you can take it anywhere you want.â€
â€œWell, he’s already there, isn’t he?â€ asked Stephanopoulos.
â€œOK, well, he’s there in a certain way, but I’m not there yet,â€ Trump said, rapidly trying to shift the conversation to the subject of President Obama. â€œYou have Obama there. And frankly, that whole part of the world is a mess under Obama, with all the strength that you’re talking about and all of the power of NATO and all of this, in the meantime, he’s going where — he takes — takes Crimea, he’s sort of — I meanâ€¦â€
It was a place Trump should not have gone, because Stephanopoulos then asked about a recent suggestion that he would recognize the Crimea as Russian territory and eliminate sanctions imposed after Russiaâ€™s invasion of the Ukrainian territory.
â€œI’m going to take a look at it,â€ he said. â€œBut, you know, the people of Crimea, from what I’ve heard, would rather be with Russia than where they were.â€
Â Next time, somebody should challenge Trump to find the Crimea on a map.
The New York Times looks at Trump’s five deferments that kept him out of Vietnam. Meanwhile, WaPo‘s editorial page today seems entirely dedicated to dumping on Trump:
- Robert Kagan: There is something very wrong with Donald Trum
- Eugene Robinson: Is Donald Trump just plain crazy?
- Dana Milbank: The facts behind Donald Trump’s many falsehoods
- Michael Gerson: Dear Republican leaders: It’s not too late to dump Trump
- Editorial Board: Is the GOP turning on Mr. Trump?
The Republican leaders Michael Gerson addresses are probably realizing that it would be better for the Republican Party if Trump lost.