April 13, 2016

A guest blog by Camille Wead,

first year law student. Doug Wead’s daughter.

Camille Wead

Camille Wead, Editor of Law and History.

The Power of Ivanka Trump

Do not underestimate the power of a pregnant woman.

From the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge’s celebrity appearances to pregnant Kim Kardashian’s six-inch stilettos, if these past years have taught us anything it’s to never underestimate the powers of a pregnant woman.

But while the media has portrayed these women as beautiful ticking time bombs, sitting at home, waiting for their babies to be delivered, making occasional appearances, we average television viewers know the truth. These women are found to be more powerful at their most vulnerable stages of life, than at any other time. They work hard and encompass more than just fashion and hair, but surprisingly politics as well.

Ivanka Trump founded #womenwhowork a movement that celebrates hard working women that balance their different roles between their relationships as mother, professional, and business woman.

This hard working mentality doesn’t stop during pregnancy. With the due date coming closer, the very pregnant Ivanka traveled with family to support her dad’s ever growing 2016 Trump Presidential Campaign success.

She has attended every debate, every win, and every loss, all while keeping up business meetings for the new Trump hotel in the District of Columbia.

One would think that with all the many ongoing business appointments, a pregnant mother would stay at home, nesting before her new baby is born.  One must ask why a woman would take on so much?

Truth be told most daughters have the hearts of their father and in this case Ivanka is not only close to the famous presidential candidate, she is his secret weapon.  Donald Trump openly admits to the relational bond and recently joked, “No, he would not be taking her on the ticket as his vice presidential running mate.”

On March 27, 2016, Donald Trump appeared on an interview for ABC television. He was in full defense mode as opponents were attacking his wife Melania. His secret weapon, Ivanka was nowhere to be seen. The Donald looked harried and distracted.

Ivanka Trump with Theodore

Ivanka Trump with Theodore

That same day, right on cue,  Ivanka Trump gave birth to her new baby boy.

Historians had been comparing Donald Trump’s “outsider,” anti-corruption, presidential campaign to Theodore Roosevelt’s trustbusting.

From her hospital bed on April 3, 2016, Ivanka Trump posted the news on Instagram. The boy would be called Theodore.




Who is the GOP establishment?

April 11, 2016

You hear a lot of talk about the GOP establishment delegates and how they plan to steal the nomination from frontrunner, Donald Trump and maybe even Ted Cruz too. But who exactly are they?

It’s a political jungle so I will describe some of the fowl as metaphors. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental.

#1) The Backyard, Short-Winged, Sparrow-Darters.

These are folks who owe their position to the higher party leaders. They do what they are told and in return get to hold onto their positions. Some are respectable County Chairman. They invariably end up as delegates to the National Convention. They don’t make any money out of the arrangement but occasionally get a deal tossed their way from big donors. They get all the booze they want at the Convention.

Surprisingly some support Trump, some Cruz but most will do what the party bosses say.

#2) The Lofty, Thin-Crested, Priebus.

These are the big party bosses who shoulder the burden of raising serious money for the GOP, some from companies that benefit by the arrangement. Nowadays they are so busy trying to get the party re-elected to Congress that they depend on the Sununu’s listed below.

#3) The Goldman-Sachs-Beaked-Osprey.

These are big donors who pay $10,000 for a picture with a political star that everybody else gets free of charge. I once wanted to give money to a presidential candidate who was a close friend. His campaign manager scoffed, ”Don’t do it,” he said, “He will think less of you for it.”

Most of them want an outside candidate who needs their money.

#4) The Drop-Jowled, Break-Nose Sununu.

These are big leaders who help run the party from behind the scenes. They can deliver large donations to the party and to the candidates. They fear that Trump will disrupt their Washington money making machine.

Most of them are angling for an “open” convention which translates as a “closed convention” where they can pick Paul Ryan.

#5) The Snap-Ripper Rove.

These are political operatives who make money as “brokers.” They bring money and candidates and delegates together but keep a lot of the money for themselves.

You will see them all over TV – never divulging who they favor (a new face?) because they may be telling multiple candidates and donors that they should be THE ONE.

“Really your father should run for president. Maybe not this time. But hey, Trump had no political experience either. Your daddy is a heck of a lot smarter than Donald Trump – and richer.”

“I know. Daddy, I told you so. I keep telling him he should run for president.”

Most of these birds thrive on chaos. They don’t care who gets the nomination as long as they get paid. Some of these birds are near starvation and others are so fat from feasting that they can hardly lift off the ground.

#6) The Full-throated, Perkin-Plucked, Thrush.

These are evangelical Christians who raise money from the faithful to “represent” them on Capitol Hill. Some Thrushes will support anyone who will arrange for serious money to be donated to their nonprofits.

In 2012 some solemnly told their followers that Catholic Rick Santorum was the perfect presidential candidate. In 2016, when Santorum couldn’t get them any big donations, they shamelessly dropped him like a hot rock.

Most of the Thrushes came late to Ted Cruz and are scrounging for money on the edges of his campaign.

#7) The Smart-beaked, narrow nosed, VanderSloot.

These are Mormons initially brought in by party leaders years ago to help assure the Romney nomination in 2012 and to help the GOP balance the undue power of evangelicals.

Later, some in the RNC establishment felt that they had gone too far.  And so they tried to take back some of the power that had gone to VanderSloots in the Mountain States. For example, they tried to change Nevada into a Primary so that the LDS would have less power. And they tried to stop Arizona from changing into a Caucus for the same reason.

The VanderSloots wouldn’t mind seeing an opening for Mitt Romney, short of that, they will join the coalition to help stampede the convention for Paul Ryan.

#8) The Feulner-Feathered Weyrich.

These are conservative Catholics who have been longing to get one of their own nominated from Rudolph Giuliani in 2008, to Marco Rubio in 2016.

Some of them get research money for their think tanks, sponsorship for their seminars and advertising dollars for their publications from corporations who in turn get corporate welfare direct from the federal pig trough.

Most of them want Paul Ryan to win a contested convention but realize it will take a “Hail Mary” to make it happen.

Finally, behind all of these delegate-birds listed above are the big corporations whose special needs drive the process.

Coming Monday, who is the GOP establishment?

April 9, 2016

Today I received a remarkable email from a very powerful friend with much influence. A public figure you have seen on television.

Here’s what he wrote me….

So Doug at Christmas Time I sat with my Congressman from —————- and he said we’re already talking about a brokered convention with Ryan coming out as  the nominee that’s why he took the Speaker job. Now this guy was a Rubio supporter but predicted everything that’s happened!

I said, “Get real.”

He  said, “No it’s going to happen.”

Could this possibly happen Doug?

Coming Monday.

Who is the GOP establishment?

The curtain is pulled back.


Exposing the corrupt reasons why “the establishment” fears Trump and Sanders?

April 4, 2016

Why does the GOP establishment fear Donald Trump? And the Democratic establishment fear Bernie Sanders?



Both political parties depend on large donations from banks and corporations. So too do candidates running for office.

What do the banks and corporations get in return?

Money right back at ya. Big money. Directly and indirectly. Money through the Federal Reserve, money through the Export-Import Bank and most of all, money by creating artificial monopolies through selective enforcement of regulations.

First there is direct corporate welfare. This is not the biggest source of income, in fact, it is the least, but it is the easiest for the public to understand so I will begin there and tell more in later posts.

Billions of dollars are given to companies directly from the U.S. Treasury. In fact, twice as much money goes to corporate welfare than to welfare for the poor. The latter is a point that Bernie Sander’s supporters like to make.  Look it up yourself.

These grants are smothered in honorable language, “to create jobs, to stimulate the economy, to protect the environment, to redress past wrongs,” the list goes on and on. Special interest groups, some of them well-intentioned, promote these “causes” but in the end, the establishment corporations make most of the money.

There are sometimes very compelling and logical reasons for corporate welfare. When I was in the White House a major company wanted millions of dollars to compete in France. They said that the French saw their company as a cultural invasion and so the French government was subsidizing their own.  

But whatever the reason, the bottom line is this, the big companies get money from the government for their business and YOU don’t.  If you start a company you are on your own and worse, you will be subsidizing your competition with your very own tax dollars. 

Oh yeah, once they get that money they turn around and give it back as donations to the politicians and political parties that helped them get it. 

When you read that the establishment is backing Marco Rubio or now, reluctantly, Ted Cruz, that is where some of that backing comes from. When there was a misquote from the Chairman of Goldman Sachs saying he was fine with either Jeb Bush or Hillary Clinton as president, that was why it was so widely believed. And that’s why it raised eyebrows when Ted Cruz forgot to report a $750,000 loan from Goldman Sachs that launched his political career. 

Forget about liberal and conservative. Think in terms of insider and outsider. 

When I worked in the White House conservative businessmen came in to make sure I was onboard for federal dollars going to their companies.

“This is our chance,” they explained. “We are in power. The liberals do it.  We have to do it too.”

I also had publishers of conservative magazines and presidents of think tanks come in and lobby me for money for these same “conservative” companies. It didn’t take long for me to see that the companies who got government money were the companies who bought advertising in those same “conservative” magazines and who financed the retreats for their think tanks and gave them research grants.

This is how the liberal-conservative equation has become compromised. Liberals will push for environmental legislation but then exempt companies that give them money. Conservatives will criticize fraudulent welfare abuse but award money to companies that overcharge for worthless services.

Yes, there are good people in the middle of this. People who believe in their cause. Private contractors who give good service to the public, government servants who give their lives to help others. But the poor continue to get poorer and the rich continue to get richer.

The Democratic establishment doesn’t trust Bernie Sanders who would answer corruption with government run socialism.

Socialism is the poor man’s way to “game” the system. They will get YOU to pay for their rent, their food, their education. It’s popularity shows how hopeless the public is about corruption.

The Republican establishment doesn’t trust Donald Trump who keeps saying that Washington is stupid, that it should be run like a business, that contracts should go to the lowest bidder. But there is a reason why they don’t go to the lowest bidder. Corruption

Trump’s answer is a return to free enterprise, supply and demand, the American Dream.

Strange bedfellows: Why Trump and Cruz need each other now

April 2, 2016

Today the airwaves are full of false reports from experts telling us how the Republican National Convention might become open and might nominate a new name. Karl Rove claims that this might happen. Respected pundits speculate about it.  But it simply will never happen and let me explain why.

To put another name into play will not only require the betrayal of Donald Trump, it will require the betrayal of Ted Cruz. And while the Republican Party will not likely survive the former it certainly cannot survive both.

Here’s how it works.  Rule 40b requires that a candidate must have a plurality of delegates in eight states to be nominated.  This is the so called “Ron Paul Rule” put in place by Mitt Romney, John Sununu, Ben Ginsberg and others seeking to block Ron Paul from being nominated in 2012.  When Ron Paul actually closed in on a majority in eight states they contested some of his duly elected delegates and threw them off the floor of the RNC.  This so saddened the Governor of one of the states involved, seeing these GOP young people disenfranchised, that he protested the action and walked out with these young people.

At present, only two candidates have reached the eight state threshold for the 2016 RNC. Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.  Under the current rules they are the only candidates who can be nominated. Thus reports today that some will vote for Rubio on the first ballot or that Kasich is surging among delegates is irrelevant. If delegates vote for a candidate that is not nominated, and because of State GOP rules some will do so, they won’t be counted. Thus Sharon Johnson of Arizona voted for Pat Buchanan in 1992 but it did nothing.

Ahhh, you say. But what if the Rules Committee votes to change Rule 40b? What if they changed it to a one state requirement to nominate? Or to no states and allow nominations on the floor?

To do that the Rules Committee would have to be controlled by delegates who want that to happen.

After the Rachel Maddow show a few weeks ago the media seems to better understand that the delegates pledged to Trump are not really people who necessarily support Trump.  Many of them support Cruz. Maybe even most of them. And some support Rubio or Bush or Romney or Ryan.

But it is safe to say that a majority of the delegates on the Rules Committee support either Trump or Cruz. They do not support Karl Rove or Ben Ginsburg or John Sununu or other GOP establishment Republicans. (Monday read a post on this blog about why the establishement fears an outsider.)

To win this battle the establishment Republicans must not only betray Donald Trump they must also betray Ted Cruz. They must convince a majority of the delegates on the Rules Committee to open the convention to someone else.  Someone not Trump and not Cruz.

It ain’t gonna happen.

Ted Cruz will not order his delegates serving on the Rules Committee to vote to open the convention to another name.  He will want to keep this as a decision between he and Trump. It is his only chance to win.

The corrupt GOP establishment may eventually do the unthinkable. Force the unity of the Republican Party, with them on the outside looking in.


How Trump Wins?

March 29, 2016

What does Donald Trump need to do to nail down the Republican Nomination?

The last thing one would expect.


The last remaining, major piece in the Trump campaign is a successful, powerful, independent Super Political Action Committee to answer the bombardment which is only beginning.  And that requires money.

No matter how rich Mr. Trump may be, no one has the liquidity to toss another $1 billion into the fight. Only a PAC, supported by Trump’s best friends and masses of supporters can raise the money to close the deal for the nomination and keep him in the running in a general election fight that promises all of the attrition and violence of the Russo-German front during World War Two.

But why a PAC? Why not his own presidential campaign? Because a donor cannot give more than $2700 each to his campaign and the ways around it are mined with legal issues. But a donor can give as much as he or she wants to a PAC. And it will take big money to force the anti-Trump GOP establishment to back down and to beat Hillary Clinton.

What will a PAC do for him?

#1) It will help organize his ground game and get Trump loyal delegates to the RNC. This requires identifying Trump supporters and turning them out to the remianing District and State Conventions where they can contest for delegate spots to Cleveland.

If this doesn’t happen soon, Cruz will continue to put his people in place as he has done in Georgia and Louisiana and is in the process of doing in Arizona. At best, one could see a convention that cheers more for Cruz than Trump. At worst Trump could have the nomination taken away.

Even minimal work by a Trump PAC could defeat that. But the clock is ticking. Many State Conventions are already over.

#2) It would end the stop Trump cottage industry.

The stop Trump movement has become the industry of choice for all of the out of work political operatives from the other 16 presidential campaign. And it is beginning to pose a very serious problem. While its negative advertisements and mischief at District and State Conventions were at first only seen as irritants to getting the nomination, they are beginning to move numbers among Independents, Women and other groups that Trump will need in the general election.

For most of the anti-Trump operatives it is not about stopping the candidate it is about paying the mortgage. They gambled on their own candidates and lost. No hard feelings. Now they are making a living working for GOP establishment folk who favor an “open” convention or want to bring Trump to heel and get promises of corporate welfare and the right people in the right places.  But the more they work the more invested they become. And the closer to the general election we get the more money starts flowing to them from Democrat donors and special interests who favor Hillary Clinton.

If a Trump Super PAC starts answering ad for ad, pundit for pundit, calling for unity and exposing their funding, the stop Trump operatives will evaporate like snow on a hot afternoon.

Once again. It is a problem that can be fixed now but too little, too late could spell doom.

#3) It will put in place the massive machinery needed to win a general election contest against Hillary Clinton.

Some things take time. No matter how much money you have or how fast you are working. Donald Trump the builder of hotels knows that very well. And there are things that a PAC should be doing now to make a difference in November.

#4) A PAC can say and do things that the candidate should not say or do.

At some point, Donald Trump must appear presidential and let his PAC become his mad dog. That is its traditional role. But it won’t work if its not seen. And it won’t be seen if it’s not on television. And it won’t be on television if it doesn’t get funding fast.

Finally, there is this.  A PAC offers a donor their best chance to seal their friendship with a future president. Trump decries such arrangements but when the dust settles and Trump takes a survey of who helped him the most he will not miss the large donations that came to the PAC that put him in office.

Most Trump Super PAC’s have received cease and desist letters from the Trump campaign.  The Great America PAC, launched by Eric Beach is an exception and is running full board. It bears watching.

Lots of people are calling for a ban on PACS and resent their influence in presidential campaigns. In the meantime, Trump better get one going or he will be watching the inauguration of Hillary Clinton from the presidential suite of one of his hotels.


March 28, 2016

In 1988 I received a call from my boss Lee Atwater. He was the campaign manager for presidential candidate, George H.W. Bush, and he had a strange request. “Hey Wead,” Atwater said, “Get the word out. Kitty Dukakis has the clap.”

Kitty Dukakis was the wife of our Democrat opponent, Governor Michael Dukakis of Massachusetts. She did not have a venereal disease. Spreading the rumor was an Atwater device to force her husband to release his medical records.

It’s an old story that is now told in history books and Atwater made a deathbed apology to the Dukakis family but it came to mind when I saw the Cruz-Trump feud flare out into the open last week. Notwithstanding the television pundits who tell you that this is a new low, attacks on the opponent’s wife and children in the middle of a political campaign are nothing new.

Here’s how the Cruz-Trump feud unfolded.

On March 8, 2016, a Ted Cruz surrogate appeared on the Neil Cavuto Show on the Fox News Channel and took a verbal swing at Melania Trump, wife of Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump. This was the first blow. If anyone knows of anything earlier, please speak up.

“If she becomes the first lady,” the television guest told Cavuto’s audience, “she will be the first one to have posed in the nude, the first one to have been her husband’s third wife and the first one to have been born outside of the United States in 100 years.” Cavuto seemed embarrassed and unimpressed by the comment and quickly passed on to another topic. Surely, Melanie Trump, is not responsible for her husband’s prior marriages.

A week later came the hit from the Cruz Super PAC. The organization Make America Awesome, founded by Liz Mair began circulating a saucy picture of Melania Trump to Mormon voters on Facebook in Utah. The organization made no effort to hide its pro Cruz affiliation. By Monday the activity was picked up by Buzzfeed.

For a time, Donald Trump was uncharacteristically calm. On March 22, the Ted Cruz strategy clearly worked. He won the Utah Caucus with 69% of the vote. Trump who polled just 14% won no delegates.

On March 23, Donald Trump answered back with his own tweet telling Cruz to leave his wife alone or he would “spill the beans on Heidi Cruz.”

Ignoring the earlier taunts by Ted Cruz, the national media came down hard on Donald Trump. Cruz was portrayed as an innocent victim standing up for his wife.

Cruz explained that he could not control an independent PAC and the national media seemed to agree. In fact, while it is illegal for candidates to “coordinate” with independent PAC’s this does not mean that they cannot disavow what they are doing. They can also stop them from using a candidate’s name.

Donald Trump, for example, has sent numerous “cease and desist” letters to shut down Super Pac’s using his name and running negative ads against his rivals. Cruz could have easily done the same.

This “war of the wives” is nothing new in American politics. Wives and children have often been the targets.

In 1828 the Whigs attacked Andrew Jackson’s wife, calling her a bigamist and an adulterer.

Rachel Jackson was a devout Presbyterian who had been kept away from the vicious campaign. After her husband won the election she traveled to Nashville to buy a dress for the inaugural ball. There she found stacks of old newspapers recounting the campaign accusations.

Rachel became ill and was ordered to bed on December 18. She died a few days later and was buried on Christmas Day.

Andrew Jackson looked at her miniature and read from her Bible each evening for the rest of his life.

Many years later, Andrew Jackson’s network of newspapers took revenge. They attacked William Henry Harrison’s family. Harrison was a popular Whig candidate for president.

The attacks were savage. One of his children was falsely accused of embezzlement. Harrison would bury three of his adult sons in the three consecutive years leading up to his election as president.  His wife would be in such grief that she would never set foot in the Washington, D.C.

Harrison would travel back East with some of his widowed daughter-in-law’s and grandchildren to try to make a new life in the White House.

Historians make fun of him for giving a long speech, without a hat, in the freezing weather at his inauguration. Survivor’s guilt? He died thirty days later. His family, abandoned and destitute, made their sad trek back to Indiana and Kentucky where they lived out their lives in poverty.

When you hear the next pundit telling you that politics is meaner today than ever before?  Don’t believe it.  Today’s Cruz-Trump battle with its “war of the wives” is only another chapter in an old story.


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