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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Dump Trump at convention? 'Time to amputate gangrened limb to save patient'



Surprises me how many people still doubt Marco Rubio will run for another term, but be that as it may here are the comments and final results of the latest Florida Insider Poll:

  • Who would win a Marco Rubio/Patrick Murphy Senate race? Rubio 55%, Murphy 45%
  • Who would win a Rubio/Alan Grayson Senate race? Rubio 96% Grayson 4%
  • Would GOP be wise to change convention rules and nominate someone other than Trump, even though would won enough delegates? Yes 42%, No 57%
  • Do you expect Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton to win Florida? Clinton 75%, Trump 25%

Democrat: Because of Trump, the Republican Party has lost a great many true republican voters, it has also gained many democrat voters, and now resembles an amputee with a prosthesis limping along, and in dire need of rehab. Trump's 'foot in mouth' disease continues to worsen and his unfavorable numbers continue to rise. By the time the elections take place people will have had more than enough of his annoying ego and painful, self adoring rhetoric. His knee jerk responses and self centered comments following the Orlando tragedy clearly define the stark contrast between him and a very experienced Hillary Clinton, who had a much more thoughtful, intelligent and steadfast response, while emphasizing Trump's bizarre comments and temperament. And she will continue to seize upon these opportunities and raise that red flag every time he opens his mouth and puts his foot back in.  

Republican: In this year, Wilcox or another outsider or fresh face would have a better shot at holding the seat than Marco. 

D: Maintaining Donald Trump as its nominee is much like a kamikaze mission for the Republican Party but so is installing a new nominee. Given that they are between a rock and a hard place, it would be best for the party to take a principled, ethical and moral stand and dump Trump!

R: Rubio and Trump will help each other to victory here in Florida as they both will help the Republican ticket with different demographics.

R: I put Clinton for the General but don't count out the disgust of her that exists in Florida.  It changes day by day and hour by hour.

R: People are starting to get Trump fatigue, GOP Congressmen are distancing themselves, Trump is having to downsize his rally venues due to dwindling crowds. GOP should poll the question about replacing him at convention, it's likely many of those that voted for him in primary would be open to it

R:  As a big fan of Jeb, I can't wait to celebrate on election night in November that Marco's career is finally over.  Marco is the new Charlie.

D: Trump continues to embarrass himself daily.

D: The answer to your penultimate question depends upon long-terms and short-term Republican goals.  If they don't nominate someone other than Trump, they look likely to lose the Presidential race.  However, if they do nominate someone other than Trump, they will disenfranchise all the primary voters who voted for Trump, and may cause irreparable damage to the party.  You can't have a process, then change the process when you don't like the result.  As a D, I sure hope they do this. 

R: Don't Look at me ...I'm voting for Jeb Bush!!!

NPA/Other: Opening up the GOP convention is "no win", but it would be fun to watch.

R: At his point, Donald Trump is dead weight and getting heavier.  He's already pulled all the supporters he can from Republican voters who will show up in November, and every single day he seems to be doing all he can to tick off women, Hispanics, veterans, and pretty much all humans.  The Democrats are predictably coalescing around Hillary, while Trump's doing absolutely nothing to draw any Democrat votes away, he can't win independents, and he's proven completely incapable of unifying the party.  Time to amputate the gangrened limb and try to save the patient.

D: Asking whether GOP delegates would be wise to change their rules implies that there might be some wisdom in the Republican party.  If so, it's been difficult to discern.

D: Bernie supporters need to be inspired to turn out in November. Fear of Trump isn't enough to keep them engaged, and many of them are not enthralled with Clinton. Patrick Murphy represents everything they hate about Washington. His anointment by party insiders only reinforces their feelings that Democratic Party insiders have rigged the game. Alan Grayson will be a much stronger candidate against Rubio or the Republican nominee for that reason. The GOP would be wise to nominate someone besides Trump, but that will alienate a big part of their base, either way they lose.

R: There is little doubt that most Americans and most Floridians are not enthralled with their choice of presidential nominees.  I have heard many Republicans say, "at least he's not Hillary."  Many Democrats say, "Trump would be worse."  How often do you find that voters find their candidate better because he or she is not as bad as the other party's candidate.

R: Any projections of anything having to do with Trump are only good at the moment they are provided.

D: Trump is a fat-assed bully (FAB).  He is undisciplined, mean spirited and a repeat business failure.  Like to Titanic he is headed to the bottom and taking a lot of passengers with him.

NPA/Other: Expect the restless Rubio to run for re-election to the Senate and win.  He has the political skills to politically disassociate from the turgid Trump who will lose Florida to the more sure footed and reliable Clinton.

R: ...If as reported Marco is poor as a church mouse, I suspect he'll find religion at the foot of the highest bidder i.e Fox News, MSNBC, or perhaps Messr. Bloomberg' network......with 100% name ID, he ain't runnin !

R: The only hope for Trump to win the election, sad to say, is that if disasters like the one in Orlando continue to happen that could become the defining issue of the election which could put him over the top.  In times of danger and uncertainty the mob calls for a dictator to protect them. 

R: Not sure if Trump is able to repair or overcome all of the damage he has done (through his words) over the last several weeks. 

D: GOP convention delegates would be wise to change rules and nominate someone besides Trump but they won't.

D: It's too late to change the RNC rules and thwart Trump at the convention, but the Republican Party can save its down-ballot candidates by finding a conservative third-party alternative to ensure their voters turn out. 

R: I'm not so certain that Marco Rubio is elected as the GOP nominee.  The guy couldn't muster up the GOP vote to win the PPP.  Maybe the patch to victory would include Donald Trump endorsing and pushing for Marco in the Primary??

R: If it's terror, border,  jobs and honesty, Hillary should lose. Anyone who confidently predicts either candidate will win are the same ones who said Trump had no chance at the nomination (I was one of them). For all of Trump's faults, Hillary is such a horrendous candidate.

R: Donald Trump is an unmitigated disaster.  Everyday, he finds some new way to open mouth and insert foot.  The problem is that he doesn't recognize and wouldn't admit that is what he doing.  I have yet to see one coherent policy statement from him.  It seems that his entire campaign is based on his ability to pick fights across the entire spectrum of the political, judicial, press and business universes.  I find him completely repulsive.  I'm going to take my blood pressure meds, now.

D: Trump will redefine the Republican Party in ugly and dangerous ways. They would be wise to publicly repudiate him at the convention.

D: Maintaining Donald Trump as its nominee is much like a kamikaze mission for the Republican Party but so is installing a new nominee. Given that they are between a rock and a hard place, it would be best for the party to take a principled, ethical and moral stand and dump Trump!

D:I don't understand why Rubio would run.  The backlash to Trump could set him up perfect in 2020. If he runs this year, he could lose even if he does it all right, and in Murphy, he has a very good opponent.  It's very high risk, low reward. While the Trumpies will burn the Cayahoga River of GOP dumps him, it's a short term pain. Trump is quickly disqualifying himself.  GOP should rip the bandaid

D: Trump has the GOP sitting on a box of dynamite. It will take much longer than anyone expected for the dynamite or blow. But get ready, it will just at the right time for republican voters to either stay home or cast their vote for The Dynaold. 

R: We're screwed. 

R: As a life long Republican and as much as I would like to see the delegates nominate someone else at the Republican national convention, they MUST follow the wishes of the GOP primary voter.  The Republican establishment and it's leaders are clearly to blame for the creation of Donald Trump. The GOP voters spoke out loud and clear during the primaries not some much bc of their love for Trump but disgust with thier elected officials from Tallahassee to DC. 

R: The race for Senate will be affected by the top pf the ticket, but Rubio's strength is strong enough to overcome the Trump problem.

R: I still think Hillary wins but the Orlando massacre changed the dynamics and may give Trump a platform to be "somewhat" presidential on.  Also think it lends a platform for Rubio to reverse course. 

D: I'm not sure how deep Trump's negative coattails will go down ballot, but I expect they would be long enough to hurt Marco against a well financed opponent.  Marco would be crazy to run in this environment if he wants to be President in 2020. 

R: As much as I'd like to see Donald Trump walked off a plank, the plurality (not majority) of GOP primary voters have spoken.  It sets a dangerous party precedent to do so -- although we clearly need to do something about this sinking ship. However, this is the bedbug infested, dirty sheets bed we've made, and now we must lie in it. 

R: No Republican in the field now can beat Murphy. They are simply not great communicators. Nor will they raise enough money. Rubio can and would win. So would Will Weatherford. But both are focused on their children. Tough spot. Rubio could raise the money and gin up his machine. He and Jeb kiss and make up. Weatherford could also raise family and other money to win. I doubt either runs and Murphy wins.

D: Manafort is no doubt steering the selection of enough Rules Committee members who will support Trump. If the Republican leadership tries to override that with a new candidate the Republican Party with disintegrate for the foreseeable future. Its a no win situation. 

R: A lot of work needed but Trump can win in a close race

R: The GOP is in a no win situation.  If they deny Trump the nomination, the backlash would be very bad.  However, having him as the nominee could be worse.  Having him win the presidency could be a death blow to the GOP.

R: Maybe not wise to change the rules, but find a rule that lets you dump trump, might cause damage with wing of the party that still leads to defeat in fall, but at least the party could hold its head up and be proud of someone they nominate, compared to the current debacle.  Having said that they would need to go into a change like this with eyes wide open .....and be prepared to deal with any and all fallout.

R: Hillary has the potential to bleed votes with her email scandal, which very well may spot Trump bonus points that he otherwise wouldn't have secured on his own.  That may be the winning formula that propels him to the White House. The conventions will have more influence on shaping decisions as the presidential race begins to pick up speed after Labor Day. 

R:  Make no mistake about it, Marco is running for reelection. He was looking for an excuse and Saturday's terror attack in Orlando gives him the reason to run. I suspect  he waits until early next week to publicly announce his intentions. Marco is essential if Republicans want to control the United States Senate. 

D: Rubio simply won't be able to overcome the trump drag in November. 

R: Hillary is falling into the same trap as every Republican presidential candidate - she's trying to make policy arguments against Trump. It isn't about policy and facts. It is a reality show where the loudest character wins. 

D: Senator Rubio wants to be President. To reach the White House he needs to leave the public sector, earn an income, accumulate some wealth on the speaking circuit and re-emerge in 2018 to help the GOP rebuild from the ashes and destruction of 2016. ... The Republican establishment has to be in collateral damage control. It's to late for the Presidency. They need to get as many members in lifeboats as they can. The rest will surely drown in the '16 tidal wave created by the orange hair monster of their own creation. 

R: The choice between a deceitful crook and an egomanical fool.  How fitting for the Kardashian world in which we live. 

R: This election cycle has been so upside down that I could see an eleventh hour occurrence that has an impact on the outcome. For example a terrorist attack, or a Hillary indictment.

R: The combination of the movie 13 hours which spotlights the Benghazi foreign policy disaster combined with the tragedy in Orlando this past week and the  rocky road ahead will lead to a GOP victory in November, as the Republicans win on being stronger with national security.

D: I can't imagine that Rubio would have a hard time dispatching the likes of Grayson or Murphy. And since the Republican Party seems to be hell-bent on letting Trump drive them right off a cliff, locking down a very expensive US Senate contest in Florida could be a small detour. 

R: the FBI Primary is still to be held.

R: For a while  Trump was entertaining. Now, he is just annoying.

R: This history making jerk Trump will fold like a wet noodle

D: The GOP made the bed they sleep in by playing into the xenophobic, racist, homophobic fears to fire up their Tea Party base. They broke their party and now they own the mess. Trying to remove Trump would just drive their base to riot and kill the party forever. They need to allow Trump to get his ass kicked and have a Goldwater or Dukakis correction. Show their base why it is wrong. Show them why they can't win. Then do the hard work of rebuilding. ... They had their chance to do that post 2008 but then went the other way. They had their chance after 2012 - even doing the "GOP Autopsy" but took the easy path so they could retake the Senate instead. Now they have Trump. ... So those saying lets change the rules - are just once again trying to take the easy way rather than deal with the real problems they have as a party. And there is no quick fix. 

D: Rubio has no idea how much Democratic money and enthusiasm will rain down on his head if he decides to run -- we'll spend every penny to end his career forever. He will lose because of his awful votes on guns, his chronic absenteeism, his radical anti-choice views — and of course, running with Trump in a state that's 23% Hispanic.

R: Question three presents a no win situation.  Dumping Trump will turn off a large segment of conservative voters.  Keeping him will turn off an equal or larger segment of moderate to conservative voters.

D: The Republican Party has a major divide among leaders and grassroots, which will prevent them from acting rationally at the convention. At this point, the republicans have their nominee!

R: Any move by the well-meaning and/or the stupid to deny Trump the nomination after his fairly-won delegate majority would hurt the Party more than his certain to be failed candidacy. Republicans who do support him would stay away by the millions, cost us the House and the Senate, as well as state legislative losses across the country. Rubio and Murphy is a coin flip, I'll go back and forth on this one.

D: It's too late for anything to happen in Cleveland other than nominating Trump. The crazies would rather burn the party down than give him up. The only chance those who actually care about saving the party have is to watch Trump lose in November (possibly with a Mike Dukakis-esque drubbing) and then try and rebuild what's left of the mess that Trump will leave behind. While Rubio is enjoying his surge in popularity a well run Murphy campaign will exploit Florida's absentee Senator and remind Florida voters why Trump embarrassed him in his own state.

R: Republicans are screwed. If we change rules to get rid of Trump, his supporters will kill us in Cleveland. If we don't, Democrats will kill us in November. Either way, it looks bleak.

R: Sadly, I think trump is the next POTUS

R: Get ready for the ugliest general election campaign season since the "Daisy ads" in the Goldwater era.

R: Events have completely shifted the political landscape in Florida and indeed the nation. After Orlando Rubio has a reason to run again which will keep this Senate seat rea and maybe even help Republicans hold the Senate.  Trump is clearly the best candidate on national security and fighting ISIS. In political terms the Republicans all of a sudden look  mighty strong at this point.

R: Although I am adamantly opposed to Trump and his campaign, I am more opposed to the GOP changing any rules just to rid the ticket of him. 

R: Changing the rules at this point is not a good idea; it is what it is. 

D: The Republican Party is going to lose the November presidential election. The question for party leaders is whether they will let the G.O.P. brand become permanently radioactive in the process. Allow Trump to leave Cleveland as the nominee, and the "party of Lincoln" may never recover. Stop him, and Republican stalwarts could win the larger struggle over the party's heart and soul even while losing the election. This Democrat's advice? Choose the latter, and live to fight another day. 

D: The RNC should probably change rules. But as a Democrat I hope they don't.

R: I'm a Trump supporter but he needs to tone down the "Hispanic judge" comments.  Every since that happened his polling has dropped.  His team and the RNC also needs to start organizing in Florida - nothing is going on right now.  We keep hearing "next month... After the convention."  If he keeps this up then Hillary will definitely win Florida and the presidency.

R: Rubio running for re-election would be a game-changer, but it's also not a sure thing with Trump and his baggage at the top of the ticket. 

R: Trump has a lot of hidden support.  People will lie to pollsters or not tweet it, but it's damn sure there especially after Orlando. 

This week's Florida Insiders included: 

Joe Gruters, David Colburn, Nick Hansen, Henry Kelley, Julia Gil Woodward, Richard DeNapoli, Karen Thurman, Rich Heffley, Bob Poe, Chris Hand, Ann Herberger, Susie Wiles, Bud Shorstein, Stephen Bittel, John Morgan, Andy Ford, Husein Cumber, Darrick D. McGhee, Donald Hinkle, Bernie Campbell, John Konkus, Ken Jones, Kristen Dougherty, Arlene DiBenigno, Ana Navarro, Scott Arceneaux, Richard Swann, Abel Harding, Karl Koch, David Johnson, Christian Ulvert, Daminen Filer, Peter Wallace, Karen Unger, Geoffrey Becker, Seth McKee, Matt Bryan, Ryan Tyson, Doug Kaplan, Joshua Karp, Steve Geller, Eric Jotkoff, Kevin Cate, Chip Case, Clarence McKee, Al Hoffman, Doc Dockery, Charles Dudley, Ana Cruz, Stephen Shiver, Christian Camara, Mike Hightower, Marc Reichelderfer, Jason Roth, Erik Kirk, Roly Marante, Rich Ramos, David Rancourt, Nan Rich, Alan Clendenin, Ralph Arza, Jackie Lee, Towson Fraser, Eric Johnson, David Bishop, Patrick Slevin, Eric Zichella, Monica Russo, Cory Tilley, Jack Seiler, Jon Woodard, Van Poole, Pete Mitchell, John Wehrung, Fred Cunningham, Jon Mills, Sarah Rumpf, Allan Bense, Justin Day, Jeff Hartley, Javier Manjerres,  Barry Edwards, Trey Traviesa, Mike Fasano, Bridget Nocco, Robert Wexler, April Schiff, Brian Hughes, Jim Davis, Kathy Mears, Frank Tsamoutales, Alex Heckler, Steve Schale, Screven Watson, Ellen Freidin, Alex Patton, Dan Gelber, Steve Uhlfelder, Stafford Jones, Betty Castor, Bob Sparks, Jamie Wilson, Chris Dortworth, Wayne Bertsch, Dave Aronberg, Fred Karlinsky, Susan Glickman, Scott Barnhart, Greg Turbeville, John Stemberger, Scott Peelen, Greg C. Truax, Mike Hamby, Jason Unger, Jon Ausman, Mark Ferrulo, Bill Lee, Darryl Paulson, Jill Chamberlin, Travis Blanton, Ron Pierce, Susan Smith, Alex Sink, Alan Stonecipher, Peter Antonacci, Brad Coker, Marion Hammer, Bob Graham, Aubrey Jewett, Ron Klein, Tom Lewis, Jim Rimes, Gretchen Picotte, Ron Gunzburger, Tom Scarritt, Pablo Diaz, Matthew Isbell, Lucy Morgan, Zach Zachariah, Paula Dockery, Ron Bilbao, Nikki Lowrey, Mac Stipanovich, Jack Hebert, Nancy McGowan, Kirk Fordham, Mark Zubaly, Susan Goldstein, Stephanie Kunkel, Kathleen Shanahan, Christian Ziegler, Andrew Weinstein, Marty Fiorentino, Gis Corbello.

[Last modified: Friday, June 17, 2016 10:14pm]


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