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The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

What Florida politicos say about the Donald Trump election

President-elect Donald Trump early Wednesday morning.

Ricky Carioti for The Washington Post

President-elect Donald Trump early Wednesday morning.



We reached out to our Florida Insider Poll politicos and asked if anyone cared to weigh in on the stunning election results. Here are responses we received yesterday:

JC Planas: There have Presidential elections where I was happy the day after; 1980, 1984, 1988, 2004. There have been elections where I was sad the day after; 1992, 1996, 2008, 2012. In 2000, I was concerned but optimistic. However, this is the first Presidential election in my my lifetime where I have to say that I am truly puzzled. Not happy, not sad, just puzzled.

Allan Bense:
Four takeaways fron the election: 1. It's the economy, stupid. 2. People are mad, especially at entrenched elected officials, and came out to vote.  3. People really don't like Hillary and were not not motivated to get and vote. 4. The FBI announcement of reopening Hillary's emails and  her link to Anthony Weiner gave life to Trump's campaign, and he was on message the entire week. 

Mark Ferrulo:
Last night was rough for a lot of us, damn rough. But the sun did come up this morning and one thing is clear — the work of progressive organizations like ours is more important than ever. We’re short on words to explain last night, but not short on resolve. We’re going to be here tomorrow and each day after fighting the good fight. There’s a lot of work ahead.

Brian Burgess:
The 2018 conventional wisdom is out the window. Case in point: does Pam Bondi want to be governor? Because having support from the 'President of America' probably won't hurt her chances.

Patrick Slevin: 
This was Clinton's election to lose. The Obama legacy cast too far a shadow that she couldn't get out from under, which largely explains her underperforming and underwhelming candidacy.  Trump was the right outsider candidate, at the time, in the right place.  #deplorablelivesmatter

Ana Navarro:
I hate polls. I hate pollsters. That is all.

Chip Case:
1.  The way voters decide how and who to vote is changing.  Clearly people showed up to the polls that were not expected to vote. Before yesterday, these  unexpected voters didn't count (with regard to turn out). The flip side is people that we're expected to vote we're not happy with either choice, but voted out of anger with how Government has been unresponsive.  Florida voters are very unique.... we are the melting pot for the rest of the country.  We are a large state with a very diverse cultures (from the panhandle to Miami Dade).  People don't work their entire lives and retire to North Dakota.... the majority of them come to Florida.  We are a large melting pot of what the rest of America is feeling.  

2.  On the heals of the election the Dem leaders nationally and in our state are the same people as yesterday.  Will there be new leaders in months to come?  Yes.... there has to be. The current leaders did their best and failed.  Change is inevitable. 

3.  Being a conservative has not changed. The sliding scale of being fiscal watch dog to pro-life (or both).... will always exist.  Depending on the politics, national landscape, national security or econonimics.... one extreme or another of the conservative ranks will gain more attention. 

Historically, the Republican Party has nominated/endorsed/supported candidates that are predictable and have paid their dues.... i.e. Bod Dole, John McCain, Bill McCollum to name a few examples.  While any of these people would have led well in their respective posts.... the party is changing.  New republicans want to connect with their choices more than ever.  Being predictable and responsible is not enough anymore. Frustration probably exist because of the lack of change.  Old school or new school of republican voters doesn't weaken the party it only makes being the nominee more competitive.... which is not a weakness.  In fact it may be more of a strength.  

4.  The lessons from this cycle are only magnified by last nights outcome.  What has been happening for the last few cycles is a 24 news cycle paired with extended voting hours/days, to the multiple social media platforms.  The byproduct is an overload of information. Some things should have an effect on the election, some shouldn't.  A "YUGE" effect of the increased information to voters who would normally register as an R or D have some much in front of them, that they believe they are more informed than people in the past.... maybe they are.  The larger story is the death of a historical two party system.... these new factors are making people believe being defined by one party is constrictive and that being a Green Party/independent/Tea Party better defines who they are as individuals/voters.  This makes campaigning and polling very difficult and more expensive.  The way you win an election is by messaging appropriately to those voters about what they care about.  To complicate matters worse.... things people cared about today (because of internet/24 hours news cycle) they do not tomorrow.  

Being all things to all people is how you win.... but trying to govern like that is not real leadership.  Real leaders having to say no.... real leaders having to upset people.... real leaders is what we need to see positive effective change going forward.  Regardless of your party affiliation.  

5.  "On my mind today?"

I have been a life long republican conservative. Now that my party has the Congress, Senate and the Presidency.... we better do well!  It's imperative to be gracious, but principled.  If we can't accomplish good effective change the electorate wants... we will be our own worst enemy.

Tony DiMatteo:
Last night was a reaction to the status quo, The people know what shape they are in and there are a lot of hurting families, here in Pinellas  and the country. Last night was not a surprise to me because I work with many people from all demographics and I knew that Trump would win Pinellas, Florida and the election. Yesterday I felt that the over/under was Trump with 300 electoral votes and now lets see if with all of the control in our hands, I hope we don't screw up the end game. Time will tell!

Bill Lee: 
There are several critical lessons here, for the media, the candidates, pundits and the party leaders of both parties.
First, this isn't a Republican victory per se.
Second, it isn't just a Hillary loss, or a Donald win.  The first is a symbol of status quo, the second a surfer of popular waves.
Third, and most importantly, if you as a party leader, candidate, media player or pundit and you do not understand what is going on with the grassroots, if you cannot speak their language, or empathize with their situation, and think they are all crazy, find something else to do.  You are by definition an elitist, and not qualified to preach to others about much of anything.
Fourth and finally, this current so-called 'phenomena' isn't new. It was evident most prominently in the 2010 Republican primaries and the subsequent general, and in the rise of Bernie-like Democrats subsequent to that year. There are vast numbers of Americans of all stripes who feel dismissed, dishonored and deplored by their government, their leaders and the pop American 'culture'. If you missed all that, if you don't get it, what does that say about your ability to listen, comment, lead, or relate?

Alan Becker: 
Florida vote was not a big surprise.  It is always within 1% statewide. I'm shocked by the national results but not entirely surprised. In law school I read Richard Hofstadter's 1964 Pulitzer Prize winning book, "Anti-Intellectualism in American Life."  It chronicled the periodic resurgence of "populism" throughout our history. Suspicion of "elites,"  of the educated, much of it propagated by the very powerful institutions able to funnel that suspicion and resentment to maintain their economic and political power.  We have seen plenty of evidence in the past 40 years that nothing has changed since Hofstadter wrote that book. Long term impact: the world keeps spinning, thought it may be a little wobbly on its axis for a while.  The impact on people like me will be minimal (except maybe lower taxes); I am concerned about those who work for low wages, are minorities, need health care and whose kids go to war.

Brad Coker:

Democrats can't win with the "Obama coalition" unless Obama is on the ballot. Absent the "Obama coalition", Florida is still a Red State.

Damien Filer:

There is a pendulum effect in politics. 
If not for the crisis and calamity of the George W. Bush administration — from the recount to WMDs — I doubt our country would have had the resolve to elect an African American named Barack Hussein Obama, especially after 9/11.
Sadly, Obama’s tenure aroused and united a latent underbelly of racism and resentment toward the changing face of America, from LGBT rights to having a woman succeed our first black president. 

Donald Trump masterfully tapped into this and awoke the sleeping giant of our lesser angels. 

Perhaps a Trump presidency will pave the way for real progressive change a la Elizabeth Warren in 2020.

John Konkus:
The term "grassroots" gets tossed around rather loosely in politics. But with Donald Trump we saw a real grassroots campaign that most of my fellow insiders either willfully  or ignorantly overlooked. When 20,000+ people show up to see Donald Trump in a cow pasture in the Democratic stronghold of Tallahassee, that ought to have been a signal that something was up. But for those of us long on the Trump Train we already knew it and knew we were on the winning track. Karen Giorno, Susie Wiles and Debbie Cox-Roush deserve the credit for organizing the Trump supporters and volunteers and building a winning ground game in Florida. In my Trump office, also in Tallahassee,  we saw a tremendous outpouring of volunteers who came in day after day, hour after hour, for weeks on end. They hit the phones, knocked on doors, put up signs and did all the things that are required to win a presidential election in Florida.  These are the people, the average people, the retirees, the state workers, the moms,  the college students who come to FSU from middle class households all across our state, who won the election last night not the establishment, not the political consultants, and certainly not the pundits. And boy isn't that the way it should be, for a change.

Frank Tsamoutales:                  
Like many industry verticals, Clinton was "ubured"! Now it is time for the country to heal. 

Rodney Barreto:

Enough said "drain the swamp". Americans have spoken and have clearly said we don't like the direction America is headed. 

Doug Kaplan:

The shift started in 2010, Obama was strong enough to hold it off in 2012 but in 2014 the Gop also made big gains.   Something to remember is the GOP already have huge gains in the house senate and governorships and legislatures. We were thinking off year elections and presidential elections were different they are not other then Obama who was a special candidate.  If the  popular vote goes to Clinton it would mean the GOP has only won the popular vote once since 1988. The states Trump won in, home To Gov Rick Scott, Snyder, and Walker. Senator Johnson of WI all elected in 2010.   Clinton lost the MI and WI in the primary she barely went there, only lost Arizona by a few points can't recall her ever going there.

Nancy McGowan:

The American people rose up to the establishment and elite  in both parties in Washingiton D.C in the most historic election since 1980. It was also a repudiation of a biased, out of touch national media. The media continued to ignore the following facts:

That there are Ninety Five  million Americans out of work, over 50 million on welfare, the flatlined economy which never reached 3 percent growth in 8 years, the favorable relationships between lobbyists and special interests with Congress and ignoring the concetns of the American people. 

The key issues in 2016 were: preserving the Supreme Court and Constitution, ignitng economic growth, repealing Obamacare, securing the borders from illegal immigrants, ending The federal education monopoly called Common Core, cutting the corporate tax rate to bringing back American manufacturing and jobs, and making fair trade that benefits America, taking care of our forgotten Veterans. 

That populist message resonated not only in Florida but also in key blue states which Trump flipped last night. The winning trifecta of Florida, Ohio, PA and also North Carolina was key.

Over 70 percent of the American voters said the country was going in the wrong direction. That is not partisan. 

President-elect Trump embraced the message that former President Ronald  Reagan sent to the will be morning in America if I am President. There will be economic opportunity for all without government constraints, a belief in the American dream, preserving traditional values and pride in being an American.

Jamie Wilson: 
This was the "Bubba and Blue-Collar" election.  

The results show a solid south and not just a crack, but a breakthrough in the Rust Belt...reminiscent of conservative populism of 1980. It's a race to publication for political and social scientists!

Jason Unger:
With control of the White House and Congress, this may be the GOP's last chance to balance budgets and prove itself a party of fiscal conservatism.  Cutting taxes while increasing the size/scope of government is not a successful formula, and we have trillions in debt to prove it.

Ben Pollara:
The election wasn't about Trump vs. Hillary, right vs. left, but stability vs chaos. We choose chaos. What does that say about our notion, as a country, of how we view ourselves? It's grim. 

Aubrey Jewett:
Trump's victory in the Sunshine State reinforces Florida's reputation as the most important swing state. Starting in 1996, we have gone D, R, R, D, D and now R again over the past 6 elections and have voted for, and helped to decide, the winner each time. Ohio is the only other state that has gotten it correct 6 times in a row (Nevada's streak stopped at 5 elections since they voted for Hillary this time around).
Trump's victory also suggests that although demographic changes seem to be favoring Democrats in Florida over time, Republicans are still competitive and can remain competitive if they get the right candidate stressing the right issues and really mobilize supporters. 
Traditional conservatism is alive and well in the Republican Party nationally and in Florida. However, it is not necessarily the dominant feature of the party in this election. Conservative will wield influence within the new Trump administration, but he is clearly taking the nation down a more populist path.
Conservatives in the Florida Republican Party are still the major force and still a winning force in this state. The Florida Democratic Party has once again failed to perform up to expectations (the Democratic victories in 2008 and 2012 in Florida were a testament to Barack Obama's campaign skills and organization  and cannot be relied on clearly now or in the future). Florida Democrats gained 1 seat in the Florida Senate and 1 seat in the Florida Congressional delegation despite the Fair Districts Amendments, lawsuits, and new districts. The Florida Democratic Party may spring to life one day. But when you have to say "wait until next year (or next election" ) for 20 years (since 1996) it makes one wonder what has to happen to get the Democrats more competitive at the state level here in Florida. On the other hand, if the Cubs can win a World Series after 100 years of "wait til next year" then perhaps there is hope for the Florida Democratic Party yet! Although apparently many of us who are old enough to remember when Democrats were the dominant party in Florida, may not be around to see it happen.

Monica Russo:
The white working class has been ignored and marginalized for too long by the political class. HRC called these folks Deplorables! 
Mr Trump seized upon the ample opportunities to stir fear and hatred while at the same time empowering these neglected white workers to turn on 'the others' - Black and Brown folks - by building walls and fomenting fear and hate. 
Liberals suck. They need to go back to their ivory towers. We need a new grassroots politic, a paradigm shift focused on community from the bottom up.

Stafford Jones:
In the final analysis, many in the country wanted a disrupter, not an ideologue.  Hard working, middle class families and small business owners are getting buried by regulations, including Obamacare.  In my family, (monthly) insurance cost us about $360 for a family of 5 in 2008.  It's costing us about $1300 today, and the coverage isn't as good.  The people that voted for Donald Trump were desperate for government to make sense in their lives, and as far as they were concerned, Donald Trump was the only person that was hearing them.

Chris Hand:
Polling suggested that Donald Trump won the Republican nomination because voters believed that government no longer listened to everyday Americans. 
The general election proves that feeling of alienation from public officials and institutions is even more widespread. But that feeling won't go away just by voting for candidates who appeal to those frustrations. For that matter, the feelings of disappointment and dismay that many Hillary Clinton supporters or Donald Trump opponents have experienced after the election won't go away on their own. Empowerment does not occur vicariously or organically. Those feelings won't go away until we can build and flex our own citizenship muscles. Perhaps the silver lining of this election is the possibility it will motivate us to follow the example of other Americans who have used the skills of effective citizenship to move government in a different direction. 

John Wehrung:
Trump’s victory and the GOP sweep was a big win for the average working American, who DC Elites, Democrats and the Mainstream Media have all disregarded in recent years. It was as if as if our opinions didn't matter.  

Well, it turns out they do. 

Paul Ryan said it best: 'Trump heard a voice that no one else heard.'  

That voice was ordinary America, and we 'Delorables' said, "enough." 



Biggest Winner: America First.  When it comes to government policy, regulations, taxes, trade deals etc... what's best for ordinary Americans (not special interests) comes first.  

Despite what the government and the media tell us, Americans know that jobs and wages are flat-lining.  Look at Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, Americans voted for a change of course, mainly toward more AMERICAN jobs and higher wages. 

Other Winners:
•        Working Class American Families
•        Main Street/Small Business
•        Small Town America/Fly-Over Country
•        First Amendment
•        Second Amendment
•        Churchgoers
•        Trade Unions
•        WikiLeaks
•        Government Accountability
•        Political Outsiders


Biggest Loser: Globalism.  Like Brexit, Donald Trump's election was a tectonic shift - not just in U.S. politics - but in world history.  This election was a wholesale repudiation of Globalism and all of its corrupt tentacles: Hyper-Partisan Media, HollyWeird, Crony Capitalism & arrogant Big Government (all the usual suspects).

•        Establishment Politics
•        Fact-Checkers
•        Pollsters
•        Political Commentators
•        Wall Street Insiders
•        Arrogant Media Elites
•        Arrogant DC Elites (arrogance in general)
•        Government Corruption
•        Government Unions
•        Gun-Grabbers
•        Planned Parenthood
•        Taxes & Regulations
•        ObamaCare (the Obama Legacy)

John Dowless:
Trump's election victory was a clear anti-establishment revolution with a populous flavor.  I was not a Republican revolution and leaders in the Republican leaders in the House and Senate would be wise to recognize that.  If Trump is successful over the next few years, his leadership will change the Republican Party to a more populous party.

Seth McKee:
Never underestimate enthusiasm and voter turnout. Trump's core voters were self-mobilized, much like African Americans were for Barack Obama. When elections are close, distinct differences in who shows up can, and in this case was, the difference.

Henry Kelley:
> What does Trump's amazing win tell us about Florida? About politics today?
It’s this simple – Americans are not doing well outside the DC/Tallahassee beltway.   People disengaged from the process because it’s clear it is a pay to play system.  Trump provided the only voice that spoke to this condition, and it’s real.  Not sure if he can solve a thing, but he’s the only candidate I believe that is motivated to try. 
> Whither the Democratic Party, nationally and in Florida? Who are the
> Democrats' leaders or standard bearers?
As a combat decorated veteran, I’ve been called racist, misogynist, and other pleasantries by the Democrats.   Their rallying cry for the last few years is they seem to hate Republicans more than they love America.  I see no “tea party” group rising up against their leadership as they do not appear to have a set of shared values.  I wish them well. 

> What is conservatism in 2016? What is the Republican Party today?
It confirms what we’ve known – GOP “leadership” is disconnected from the party voters.  We delivered the House in 2010 after watching them lose all of Congress to the democrats.  We then supported Romney and that train wreck.  We won the Senate.  And now, despite the best efforts of the GOPe, we won the Presidency.  You’d think they’d listen to us.   So here’s the state of things – we expect results towards limiting the size and scope of the federal government. 

> What are the lessons?
The media, pundits, Democrats and GOPe focus on Trump’s statements literally, and didn’t take the candidate seriously.  We took Trump seriously, but didn’t take his words literally.  I’ve dropped an f-bomb or two, and don’t get the vapors when it happens.   Actions are what matters, and both parties have been failing the American people for a long time. 

> What's on your mind today?
An odd sense of relief and happiness.  Trump defeated Dems, GOPe, media and a whole host of expectations.  What happens next?  It will be fun to participate! 

Doc Dockery:
Trump lost me when be demeaned purple  heart recipents.  My uncle was  awarded one after dying in Sipan fighting for his country during  World War II

Jeff Johnson:
The morning after the election I was with a group of people who were not politicos, but included people from either side of the Presidential election. What they wanted, more than anything else, was to put the ugliness and division of the campaign behind them and go back to being one united nation.

I hadn't stayed up to hear President-elect Trump's victory speech, but reading it the next morning, I noted the conciliatory nature of what he said.  And while he talked about rebuilding the nation's infrastructure as a starting point, I hope he and the next Congress will also consider strengthening Social Security's financial footing as an issue that offers common ground.  Pew recently released a report showing how polarized Americans are on almost every issue, and the one exception was Social Security.  Florida's Congressional delegation can lead the conversation on how we ensure the program remains strong past 2034 - Members of Congress like Vern Buchanan and Brian Mast and Charlie Crist all talked about it on the stump at length.

Darryl Paulson:
   Florida has voted Democratic in 3 of the past 5 presidential elections, and one of those losses was Gore's 537 vote loss to George W. Bush.  This election slams the brakes on the growing Democratic Party dominance in presidential elections.
   Where everyone thought the GOP would be engaging in self-reflection after a Trump loss, it is the Democrats who may need a political psychiatrist.  Republicans dominated the election.  Where Dems had a great opportunity to regain control of the Senate, they picked up only 2-3 seats and Republicans retained control.  Where Dems were projected to pick up around 15 House seats, they won 5.  Where no one expected a Trump victory, he dominated Clinton in Florida and Ohio, and won states like WIsc and Pennsylvania that Dems have dominated for decades.
   I do not see Trump's victory as a plus for the Republican Party or conservatism.  Trump was neither.  In the past 20 years he has been a Democrat, Republican and Reform Party member.  If anything, he is a Charlie Crist clone on the national level.
   Trump would not recognize a conservative idea if it bit him in the behind.
I wish Trump well because I wish the country well but, as they say, the past is prologue.  Given his past, it is hard to be optimistic.
   My biggest concern is that Trump will try to apply his business experience to government, and find that they do not work.  Eis now er discovered the same thing with respect to his military background.  He would give an order as president and expect it to be carried out.  When it wasn't he realized that different forces operate in the military and government, just as Trump will find different forces operate in business and government.
   As a business executive, Trump could hire and fire people at will and reorganize the corporate structure.  As president, he will clash heads with the bureaucracy, the legislature and the courts.  Will he then complain the system is rigged, or will he be smart enough to realize that adjustments are necessary.

Jim Holton:
1.  Florida, like most of the Country, experienced a middle class revolt against establishment politics and institutions.   Liberalism v. Conservatism is no longer the fight.  It's now the "forgotten" person v. the power elite.

2.  The Democratic Party is shattered because it represented the crony capitalism and bloated bureaucracy which the middle class rebelled against.    President Obama is clearly the standard bearer of the Democratic Party.   Elizabeth Warren will challenge him to philosophically define the Party.   Florida Dems are in disarray without any clear leaders.

3.  Conservatism is now common sense capitalism and national revival.   The Republican Party is now the embodiment of this new conservatism as articulated by President-Elect Trump.

4.  The pundits should read James Madison ( especially Federalist #10 ),  instead of Howard Zinn if the wish to understand America today.

5.  I hope and pray that  Mr. Trump can unify our divided Nation!

Richard DeNapoli:
What an amazing night for America!  Trump defied the odds - virtually all of the polls, the Never-Trumpers, the media...because he tapped into the feelings of discontent with politics as usual.  After years of empty promises and no real middle class wage growth, America wanted someone to disrupt the status quo, and Trump was their champion.  America was tired of dysfunction in Washington.  Trump was the only candidate with a chance of breaking through this mess. He is larger than life and speaks with an authenticity not common in politics today.  The establishment in both parties has failed America lately, and that's why I endorsed Trump before Florida's primary.   I said back then that he was the one who could break the red state-blue state dynamic and win states that had been in the Democratic column in the past.  I said that the Clinton's wouldn't know how to run against an atypical candidate like Trump.  Trump is also an example of a true American success story...someone who has had both ups and downs in life and business but who never gave up and never quit.  The voters valued this about him.  This election was also a stark choice because Hillary embodied everything that people disliked about the establishment...her cynical nature, her backroom deals, and the feeling that she was not honest.  This election tells us that anything is possible in American politics.  It shows that the pendulum typically swings back between the parties after 8 years, since only George H. W. Bush was able to win a third term for a party since Roosevelt.  It tells us that conservatism can evolve.  This is truly an American story we have witnessed.  Only in America!  

Javier Manjarres:
Trump's historic victory mopped up the immigration reform wet dream that Ana Navarro and the rest of the pro-illegal immigration lobby had dreamt of.

Abel Harding:
What does Trump's amazing win tell us about Florida? About politics today? People are angry. They feel as if the system has failed them: the education system that fails to prepare them for jobs where they can earn a living wage to support themselves and their families; the economy, which has left a large portion of the non-college educated population behind; and the government, which always seems to be there to tell them what they can and cannot do, but rarely seems to function in a way betters their lives.

Whither the Democratic Party, nationally and in Florida? Who are the Democrats' leaders or standard bearers?
In Florida, the Democrats have perfected the art of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to find another organization in the state that has missed as many opportunities as Florida Democrats, yet there never seems to be a real shakeup in leadership and strategy. Part of the challenge for the party, and this applies nationally as well, is the diverse populations it has to reach. The working classes of the Panhandle have little in common with the liberal enclaves of South Florida. A successful strategy, of course, would be to cultivate local candidates that appeal to each of those demographics and build a bench where someone can make a breakout appeal for a statewide win, but strategy doesn't appear to be the Florida Democratic Party's strong point. Nationally, this was a rejection of the Democratic Party establishment, which leaves a large void. I imagine Elizabeth Warren will try to fill it, although she has the charisma of a vase of plastic sunflowers, so it's hard to imagine her running a dynamic campaign. It's hard to imagine Bernie Sanders has another national race in his at this stage in his life. This campaign showed that a focus on minority voters is not enough - at some point, you do have to engage with working class white voters, and the Democrats have few folks with the ability to do that. 

What is conservatism in 2016? What is the Republican Party today?
I don't think we know. True conservatism, the kind practiced by Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and their peers, was soundly defeated in the presidential primary. No one knows what Donald Trump's beliefs truly are and what governing platform will emerge in his administration. And how will congressional leaders, and state GOP leaders, blend his product with their own? That's the pending mystery of 2017.

What are the lessons?
The ruling class, which includes media, politicians, civic leaders and the like, have stopped listening to those with opinions and life circumstances that are different from their own. That's why this was such a shock to so many. They simply thought if they merely warned folks of the risk, everyone would fall in line. They had no appreciation for how people are actually hurting, how they feel left out and how no one seems to give a damn about improving their lives.

What's on your mind today?
I read something recently that incorporated the famous C.S. Lewis quote, "Don't use words too big for the subject. Don't say 'infinitely' when you mean 'very'; otherwise you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite." Democrats have been doing that against Republicans for years and the Republican establishment incorporated similar tactics in trying to thwart the populist rising that is Donald Trump. The public is hurting, they feel left behind and no one spelled out a vision or a plan they could engage with other than Donald Trump. Hillary Clinton had spent her entire public career raging against the vast right-wing conspiracy, so when she faced an opponent that she and many others viewed as a true threat to the Republic, she had simply run out of words. Her protests were nothing more than white noise.

Greg C Truax:
Donald Trump, a flawed candidate, crafted a surprise win that was less about issues and more about deep distrust with the status quo by voters in search of a profound transformation. In a society  based on trust, the long slide to distrust of major institutions was a flashing red light leading up to the election. Trump gave voice in a classic change election to these “forgotten” Americans, speaking to their lost confidence at a time when American society is undergoing profound social changes and economic disruption.  (On the record ok.)

Leslie Wimes:
Polls don't mean a thing when people are angry and feel left out. They may say one thing, and do an entirely different thing.
The Democratic Party, both in Florida and Nationally, is in great peril. It isn't listening to its base, and has started doing things that has led to great losses that will continue until it cleans house from top to bottom. In Florida, Allison Tant and Scott Arceneaux must go. They have not been successful in a very long time, and it shows with the major disconnect in the African American community, a section of the party that no democrat can win without. Nationally, the Democratic Party just lost in what can only be described as a disaster by subscribing to the same game plan of not engaging with its base, and also by not listening to its base.
As far as conservatism, just like liberalism, there are different levels, ranging from moderate to extreme. Right now, true conservatism has been pushed to the background by a group of angry people who have hijacked the Republican Party. Frankly, the anger is understood. It's the hatred that isn't.

Kathleen Shanahan:

Florida remains key top 3 state that matters in national elections representative of all the issues & dynamics facing our country.

Ashley Bauman:

Trump's victory tells us that Floridians are more deeply divided than we once thought. We are a state built on diversity but that diversity has created an environment where parts of the electorate feel left behind by the Democratic party and on Tuesday the turnout shows that those Floridians stood up and voted for the change they see in Donald Trump. As scary as this all seems, it's now time for Floridians to unify behind their differences and embrace the eccentricities of this diverse state.

Mark Zubaly:

The election was instead of "I am woman, hear me roar", it was more like, "I am white, hear me roar."  TO quote the old song.

Chris Korge:

The election is over and although I am extremely disappointed I hope and pray that President Trump brings our country back together and does a great job for all the American people. I also hope he only focuses on his campaign promises that will move the country forward in a positive unified way. This is not the time for him to pursue his bullying rhetoric!

[Last modified: Thursday, November 10, 2016 2:21pm]


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