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Donald Trump To Put His Narcissism On Display In The White House

Trump Map

It’s been more than six months since Election Day, but President Trump still can’t help but brag about what he thinks is a “big” election win. It started even before he took office, and I suppose it was understandable that Trump, who had never run for political office in his life before 2016, would be impressed with his win no matter how big it is, but it has continued long thereafter. Very quickly, Trump began to make the obviously false claim that his win last year was the biggest since Ronald Reagan’s win in 1984. In reality, of course, that wasn’t true, and it wasn’t even true if you limited the criteria to just Republican Presidents since Reagan. In reality, Trump’s win was closer to George W. Bush’s narrow win over John Kerry in 2004 than it was to Reagan in 1980 or George H.W. Bush in 1984, and compared to the victories of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, it was pretty far down the list. Indeed, as I’ve noted several times, but for less than 80,000 in three states, Donald Trump would not be President today and, of course, Trump lost the popular vote, although he claims that was only because “millions ” of people voted illegally, a claim for which he has never provided even the slightest bit of proof.

Now, Trump plans on putting up a permanent reminder of his win in the White House for everyone to see:

President Trump is planning on hanging a map displaying his 2016 Electoral College victory in the White House, according to a report. One America News Network White House reporter spotted the framed map being carried through the White House by a Trump staffer.

One America News Network White House reporter spotted the framed map being carried through the White House by a Trump staffer.”Spotted: A map to be hung somewhere in the West Wing,” the reporter

“Spotted: A map to be hung somewhere in the West Wing,” the reporter tweeted.Trump has often brought up his election victory over in the

Trump has often brought up his election victory over in the months since he took oøice. In April, the Washington Post’s White House bureau chief reported that Trump had asked the Post to run the election map on the front page of their newspaper.

Days before, Trump interrupted another interview with a Reuters reporter to pass out copies of the map showing his victory.

The photo comes from One America News Network reporter Trey Yingst:

It’s interesting to note what map Trump chooses to hang for his guests to see. What we’re looking at, of course, is a map of counties across the United States and how they voted in the Presidential election that appears to be based on the Election Maps created by University of Michigan Professor Mark Newman, although his version of the map doesn’t include Alaska and Hawaii. Looking at it, you’d assume that Trump won a massive victory in November, but that would be a reality. In reality, Trump’s win was rather narrow both in terms of the Electoral College and in terms of the popular vote, which he of course lost by a larger margin than any President who has ever won the Electoral College while at the same time losing the popular vote. The only reason it looks larger on this county level map is because there are vast parts of the Mountain West and elsewhere in the country where there is a lot of land and very few people. In the end, a map like the one that Trump is touting here is kind of meaningless because it doesn’t really accurately reflect the population as it voted last November. To do that, it would be more helpful to look at a map of the United States that combines the election results with a cartogram that reflects the population of the respective states:

2016 Map Population

Or this one that shows county-by-county results but uses red, blue, and purple to more accurately show the percentage of the vote:

2016 County Map Purple

In any case, leaving aside the accuracy of the map Trump will be displaying in the White House, what’s truly remarkable here is the extent that it continues to show the extent to which Trump is obsessed with bragging about himself. Anyone who has been familiar with his schtick going way back before he ever ran for President is well-familiar with that Donald Trump, of course. It’s the brash, over the top, gold-plated, inflated ego persona that we’ve seen from him ever since he became a media celebrity in the 1980s. Since that time, the one thing that has been the biggest concern of Donald Trump is the promotion of Donald Trump and the “Trump” brand, and we’ve seen it in everything from his media appearances over the years to the manner in which he makes sure to brand everything he touches with the “Trump” name. It got to the point where, by the time he was running for President two years ago, the biggest source of his income and self-valuation appeared to come from licensing fees he was paid for the use of his name on consumer products and on real estate developments that he had no actual role in. Given that it’s long been a part of his character, I suppose it’s no surprise that he’d continue it as President. Not only has he remained obsessed about his supposedly “yuge” election victory, but he also made claims about the size of the crowd that came to Washington for Trump’s Inauguration on January 20th, including in a speech before the Memorial Wall at the C.I.A. the day after his Inauguration. In other words, this is all normal behavior for Donald Trump.

The fact that it’s normal, though, doesn’t make it any less concerning behavior for a President of the United States. On some level, of course, you have to think pretty highly of yourself to enter politics to begin with and even more highly to even put your name forward for President of the United States. This is especially true in the case of someone whose resume lacks the kind of experience we’d normally expect for someone in that position or someone, like, Trump, who had never even run for or held political office in the past. Never before in history, though, have we seen this level of narcissism and self-aggrandizement in a politician or President. It raises real concerns about Trump’s state of mind and his judgment, but then that’s true about pretty much everything that has happened over the course of the past 114 days.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Mikey says:

    “Look at all these vast swaths of empty land that voted for me!”

    It’s funny how he’s spent the last six months whining about voter fraud but wants to count prairie dogs as votes for himself.

    ReplyReply

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 0

  2. dmhlt says:

    And a cartogram map of the 2016 election by county, from the U. of Michigan:

    http://www-personal.umich.edu/~mejn/election/2016/countycartpurple1024.png

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  3. Mikey says:

    @dmhlt: Here’s one with population on the Z-axis:

    http://metrocosm.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/election-map-by-county-3d-1.png

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  4. michael reynolds says:

    When Animorphs started hitting the bestseller lists we got a blow-up and made it into a poster. We do not display that. When I first hit the NYT bestseller list my wife got me the same. It is not on my walls. When my wife won the Newbery we did not create a little shrine. I think it’s in a box somewhere.

    And those were actual accomplishments. They weren’t losses undone by the electoral college. But we aren’t desperately needy, insecure bags of wind.

    ReplyReply

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  5. CSK says:

    Flanked, I suppose, by photos of the “overflow” crowds on the National Mall January 20, 2017.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  6. CSK says:

    What continues to puzzle me is why the Trump brand ever had any particular value. Basically it equates to ‘tacky,” or “vulgar,” or “third rate.”

    Who buys the overpriced crap with his name on it? People who can afford it wouldn’t be caught dead with it, and people who think it’s “classy” can’t afford it.

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  7. Mikey says:

    @CSK:

    What continues to puzzle me is why the Trump brand ever had any particular value. Basically it equates to ‘tacky,” or “vulgar,” or “third rate.”

    You’ve answered your own question.

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  8. CSK says:

    @Mikey:

    My point was that usually the kind of people who think gaudy crap is “classy” can’t afford it. And that seems to have been the case with most of the products with the Trump label (vodka, steaks, etc.). They all ended in failure.

    So why, with this history of disaster, would anyone still want to license the Donald Trump name, which seems to have become a synonym for “grotesquely overpriced sh!t”?

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  9. michael reynolds says:

    @CSK:
    My wife and I were just at Caesar’s in Vegas (tax-deductible research) and noticing the disconnect between the stores in the Caesar’s mall – Louis Vuitton, Versace, Canali – and the shoppers who were, generally speaking, rather more Target and Macy’s. Every shop had two sleek, bored employees standing and staring at the passing throng from an empty store.

    I don’t get it.

    Also don’t get why a life-size copy of Michelangelo’s David is part of an ancient Rome theme, what with the Florentine Renaissance not exactly taking place during the time of the Caesar’s.

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  10. gVOR08 says:

    Proving once again that the acreage of the United States is overwhelmingly Republican.

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  11. Stormy Dragon says:

    @CSK:

    I forget who said it, but “Donald Trump is a poor person’s idea of what a rich person is like”.

    ReplyReply

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  12. Not the IT Dept. says:

    I will bet you ANYTHING that when Trump goes on his overseas trip this week he gives his luckless hosts framed copies of that map – autographed and with a photo of him in the top corner.

    Of the emotional vacuum that is the core of his being – it’s moving beyond the late-night comedy shows and heading into sanitarium territory at an amazing rate of speed.

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  13. TM01 says:

    It’s been more than six months since Election Day, but Democrats still can’t accept that Donald Trump won and continue to harp on the result of the popular vote as if it means something. #FTFY

    #YouLost

    ReplyReply

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  14. Mikey says:

    @TM01: Hahahaha…Trump’s the one who’s so fixated on the election that he’s going to put this big stupid map of it up on the wall.

    Obviously the result of the popular vote means something to him, eh? Idiot.

    ReplyReply

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  15. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Are there enough crime lords and their molls to keep the Vegas outlets of Versace, Vuitton, et al in business? (I’m reminded of the Mary Tyler Moore episode in which one of Lou’s sleazier army buddies gets the hots for Mary. When Lou objects, the guy says, “Hey, Mary’s no one night stand. She’s the kind of girl you’d be proud to take to Vegas for the weekend.”

    @Stormy Dragon:

    I think the first person to say that might have been Fran Leibowitz. The point being, of course, that poor people can’t afford that crap. So who’s buying it?

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  16. JohnMcC says:

    @Stormy Dragon: I must have a similar easily forgotten source because I’ve been using that for quite a while. I think it’s a twin to the observation (about Newt Gingrich) that ‘he’s a dumb person’s idea of what a smart person is like’.

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  17. CSK says:

    @JohnMcC:

    You know, this would make a great game for a rainy (here, anyway) Sunday afternoon. Fill in the blanks:

    Donald Trump is what a/an _____ person thinks a/an ______ person is.

    Take it away, wordmeisters.

    ReplyReply

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  18. Mr. Bluster says:

    @TM00.000000000000000001:..Just 4 U!

    Saturday Night Live on that master of self camouflagellation:

    “…diving into bushes without warning is usually his boss’s thing,”

    ReplyReply

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  19. Steve V says:

    Remember when that vain bastard Obama had columns at his convention? Thank god we’re free of that egotist.

    ReplyReply

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  20. CSK says:

    There’s an interesting article in Axios this morning about how Trump is very, very unhappy with his cabinet members–except for Tillerson–because they don’t praise him sufficiently loudly and lavishly in public. Major shake-up to come, although not immediately.

    ReplyReply

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  21. JKB says:

    Look at all that geographic diversity. Diversity is good, right? The last, shaded, map shows the geographic diversity even better.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  22. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:
    Hey, JKB: which version of the Comey firing story do you like best?

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  23. An Interested Party says:

    Isn’t it so nice to have a president who has small-penis syndrome…

    ReplyReply

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  24. CSK says:

    @An Interested Party:

    If the ratio of self-glorification to size is inverse, I’d say “microscopic” would be a better word.

    ReplyReply

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  25. Gustopher says:

    The sad part is that he will see this map every day, mistake acreage for people every day, and believe that his victory was massive and that he has a massive mandate.

    On the plus side, it will infuriate him all the more when he can’t get anything done despite his massive mandate.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  26. Lynn says:

    @michael reynolds: When Animorphs started hitting the bestseller lists we got a blow-up and made it into a poster. We do not display that. When I first hit the NYT bestseller list my wife got me the same. It is not on my walls.

    My PhD is hanging in our house … on the wall in the laundry room. I think it’s funny.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  27. teve tory says:

    @Steve V: I’m old enough to remember when Krauthammer complained that Obama was just such a narcissist.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  28. Yank says:

    There’s an interesting article in Axios this morning about how Trump is very, very unhappy with his cabinet members–except for Tillerson–because they don’t praise him sufficiently loudly and lavishly in public. Major shake-up to come, although not immediately.

    And this is why he can only get 3rd rate Republicans to come work for him. No one who is intelligent and not desperate is going to put their reputation on the line to come work for an incompetent narcissist, who has you playing defense every single day.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  29. JohnMcC says:

    @Yank: For anyone who remembers ‘heck of a job, Brownie!’ this lack of qualified administrators in federal agencies and the WH is one of the worst things about this administration. It’s virtually assuring that any future external crisis (did you know there’s an Ebola outbreak in the DRC?) will be a complete cock-up.

    Not the very worst thing about these guys. But very bad.

    ReplyReply

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  30. Gustopher says:

    This is just begging for the next President to move the portraits of all popular vote losers into a special room… probably with a toilet.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  31. Franklin says:

    @JKB: The one from Mikey is probably the most informative. It does use some shading, although not the full spectrum.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  32. Jake says:

    Ya ya Trump bad we good.

    https://medium.com/@KeriSmith/on-leaving-the-sjw-cult-and-finding-myself-1a6769b2f1ff

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 12

  33. Jake says:

    “When you believe you are morally superior, when you have dehumanized those you disagree with, you can justify almost anything. In a particularly vocal part of the left, justification for dehumanizing and committing violence against those on the right has already begun.”

    ReplyReply

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  34. Barry says:

    @teve tory: “I’m old enough to remember when Krauthammer complained that Obama was just such a narcissist.”

    All right-wing political talk, with no exceptions, is Freudian projection. In Krauthammer’s case, the man ostentatiously writes pure babbling nonsense, and acts like he’s imparted words of wisdom.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  35. Pch101 says:

    @Jake:

    It’s quite remarkable that you’ve managed to live this long without ever having a single original thought.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  36. gVOR08 says:

    @Barry:

    In Krauthammer’s case, the man ostentatiously writes pure babbling nonsense, and acts like he’s imparted words of wisdom.

    Not really my opinion. Krauthammer writes the most carefully crafted lies in RW media. He’s the one RW pundit you know doesn’t believe what he’s saying because his columns are obviously crafted with malice aforethought.

    Also, I haven’t seen him write on AGW for a couple of years. When the no warming since ninteen ninety cherrypicked whichever year scam fell apart, he seems to have seen he handwriting on the wall and realized he’d make himself look silly if he kept pushing it.

    ReplyReply

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  37. Kylopod says:

    I guess I’ll reprint what I wrote in the other thread about Krauthammer:

    Over the years, Krauthammer has for the most part acted as a party hack. Before the Trump era, his default position in nearly all his columns was to slam Democrats and praise Republicans, sometimes twisting himself into a pretzel for the task.

    For me, the most incredible example of this were his columns on embryonic stem-cell research throughout the 2000s. Krauthammer, it turns out, actually supports the federal funding of such research. But you really need to read between the lines of his columns on the subject before figuring this out, because he spent most of these columns praising Bush to high heaven and, later, bashing Obama, despite the fact that he supposedly agreed with Obama’s decision and disagreed with Bush’s. The overwhelming message of these columns was that Bush approached the issue in a thoughtful and nuanced manner, whereas Obama resorted to cliche and strawman.

    That’s the way Krauthammer deals with virtually every topic: it seems that the thing that matters to him most isn’t to make a case for or against a particular policy, but to argue that Republicans are honorable and Democrats are scum. It is party propaganda disguised as character analysis.

    Like his colleague George Will, Krauthammer is often presented as a Reasonable Conservative mostly because he eschews conspiracy theories (if you don’t consider global warming denial to be in effect a conspiracy theory) and adopts the veneer of an intellectual. So it’s not surprising he’d be slow to warm to Trump. Also like Will, he has spent much of Obama’s presidency bizarrely accusing Obama of being a raging narcissist, propagating the debunked urban legend that Obama excessively uses the pronoun “I”–an argument that, in light of Trump’s rise, looks even more idiotic now than it did the first time around.

    Unlike Will, however (who’s more a conservative ideologue than a party hack), Krauthammer has no prior history of failing to support the GOP nominee and no prior history of attacking a sitting Republican president. When he finally got around to endorsing Hillary last year, it was the worst endorsement of all time, as The New Republic put it.

    It makes sense, in a way, that he’d openly wish for the removal of Trump so that the presidency would pass to Pence (or, in a more extreme scenario, to Ryan, the true wet dream of Beltway conservatives). It’s hard to imagine he can stand continuing to be in the position of GOP critic. It’s just not in his nature.

    ReplyReply

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  38. michael reynolds says:

    @Jake:
    Which of Trump’s lies about Comey do you prefer? I’m taking an informal poll.

    ReplyReply

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  39. Argon says:

    Pathetic.

    ReplyReply

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  40. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @CSK: Considering that Trump Virtually-every-product-in-the-universe have all gone banko, I’d have to assume that no one was buying any of it. Ever. Bigly not buying.

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  41. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @Kylopod: Krauthammer reminds me of a line Martin Mull said to John Candy on Big City Comedy eons ago (I think the early 80s). John had noted that Mull had sold out and was no longer “doing comedy that makes a statement.” To which Mull replied

    I still do comedy that makes a statement; it’s just that these days I’m working on making a bank statement.

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  42. Matt says:

    I suppose it was understandable that Trump, who had never run for political office in his life before 2016

    Only because he never won the various primaries he ran in. Dude has been trying to run for president since the 80s.

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  43. MarkedMan says:

    @Lynn: I have a few framed patents and a framed marketing brochure from the first product I ever worked on that became a big thing. They are in the walk in closet on the side of a shelf that only I see when I get a work shirt out.

    The Donald probably calls in Melania for a photograph when he pinches out an unusually long turd…

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  44. MarkedMan says:

    @Yank:

    And this is why he can only get 3rd rate Republicans to come work for him.

    I’m fairly certain he can no longer get 3rd raters to work for him. I’m pretty sure someone like Pence would never have accepted the job if he had the wit to see how this was playing out. And Bannon, DeVos, et al are far, far from 3rd rate…

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  45. Kylopod says:

    @Matt:

    Only because he never won the various primaries he ran in. Dude has been trying to run for president since the 80s.

    He flirted with running, but he never officially entered any of those earlier races, prior to 2016. (An interesting thought experiment is what would have happened had he chosen to officially become a candidate in the 2012 race. My guess is he’d have sunk like a lead balloon–people forget that his poll numbers actually collapsed following the killing of Osama Bin Laden and the near-simultaneous release of Obama’s long-form birth certificate, and that was when he took himself out of contention–but given how improbable his rise in 2016 seemed, it’s hard to say for sure.)

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  46. MarkedMan says:

    @Jake:

    “When you believe you are morally superior, when you have dehumanized those you disagree with, you can justify almost anything.

    For those who know my posting here, it may surprise them to know that I thing Jake is on the right track here. When I was young, the left was the violent side. They were the ones that planted bombs and kidnapped people and barricaded themselves into apartments with their children and shot at the police officers who tried to arrest them. Starting with the Reagan era, though, the left turned more towards empathy and sympathy, and violence was all about the right wingers. But I sense that the tide is turning again. Of course, right wingers are intolerant as they ever were, and as prone to violences as they were throughout our history, because, let’s face facts, conservatism equals the KKK and lynch mobs who left church on a Sunday and went to a picnic grounds with their families and watched as two or three “Negroes” were tortured and hung or burned alive and then bought the postcards of all that and mailed them to sympathetic family members who couldn’t attend. But the left oscillates between touchy feely and violence. And I think we are seeing the young on the left embracing intolerance, with a self satisfied righteousness that would do the Puritans proud. I hope that I am merely being hysterical, but the truth is I think it is only a few small steps to the bombings and bank robberies and murders of the late 70’s.

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  47. Gustopher says:

    @MarkedMan: For years, we have held the left up to the standard of Martin Luther King Jr — let the police beat you, and you’ll have the higher moral ground. If there is any violence of any kind, it is claimed that it invalidates the entire movement, even when the violence is mounted police riding their horses into a crowd, and charging anyone who raises a hand to avoid being trampled with “animal abuse”.

    At the same time, we have undermined everything that made peaceful demonstration effective. There is no news coverage, and peaceful protests are whisked away out of sight in some “free speech zone”.

    For years police have been beating and shooting black kids, and there would be a march against police violence, but it would never sink in. What made things different in the past few years? Riots. Riots and the threat of violence.

    I would rather we took political protest seriously in this country, even when the protest doesn’t fit the agenda of large corporations (twelve old men in lawn chairs shouting “keep the government out of my Medicare” is national news that sets the media’s agenda, but modest protests of a few hundred liberals never get attention), but if we’re not going to… people will resort to violence.

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  48. Jen says:

    than it was to Reagan in 1980 or George H.W. Bush in 1984,

    Nitpicky, I know, but Reagan was reelected in 1984; G. H. W. Bush was 1988.

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  49. gVOR08 says:

    @Gustopher:

    but modest protests of a few hundred liberals never get attention

    In 2003 100,000 people demonstrated in NY against the Iraq war, as did at least 6 million globally. There was so little news coverage that I now see people say there was no real opposition to the Iraq war.

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  50. wr says:

    @MarkedMan: “I’m pretty sure someone like Pence would never have accepted the job if he had the wit to see how this was playing out.”

    Definitely disagree on Pence. First, he could only dream of reaching the third tier. He was on a Greyhound to oblivion when Trump rescued him. And it’s clear that he was born to play toady and lickspittle. And somehow he won’t mind if Trump disintegrates altogether and he’ll have his chance to bring Gilead to America.

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  51. Matt says:

    @Kylopod: Personally I believe this qualifies.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump_presidential_campaign,_2000

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  52. al-Alameda says:

    @TM01:

    It’s been more than six months since Election Day, but Democrats still can’t accept that Donald Trump won and continue to harp on the result of the popular vote as if it means something. #FTFY
    #YouLost

    I’m sorry that Trump and his supporters still cannot accept the fact that approximately 65 million voters – or 3 million more than who voted for him – still question the legitimacy of his presidency.

    Amazing that Trump lost the popular vote by 3 million, isn’t it?

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  53. Tyrell says:

    Me o my, that map has more red than the sunburn crowd at the Darlington Southern 500 .

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  54. Kylopod says:

    @Matt: I did not know that, or perhaps I’d forgotten. I was aware of his 2000 Reform Party “candidacy,” but I was under the impression it didn’t go further than his 2012 flirtation with a run for the GOP nomination. I guess it depends how you define “running.” According to the Wikipedia article, he never went further than forming an exploratory committee, though he did get on the ballot and even win two primaries. I didn’t know the RP had primaries.

    As I’ve mentioned before, according to Jon Meacham’s 2015 biography of George H.W. Bush, Trump actually went to Lee Atwater in 1988 and asked to be put into consideration as Bush’s running mate. Bush reportedly considered the request “strange and unbelievable.” The anecdote suggests to me that Trump really did have his eyes set on the White House back then; it wasn’t just a publicity stunt, as nearly everyone assumed.

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  55. Matt says:

    @Kylopod: The fact he was on the ballet is what qualified it to me as an attempt.

    @Tyrell: A good portion of which is empty farmland.

    Some of those red areas had so little population you could drive at 65 mph for hours and not see anyone. I don’t know if it’s still that way but some of the states where those red areas are located used to have autobahn like speed limits. I remember popular mechanics running a mini van over 100mph through I think one of the Dakotas. If not south/north Dakota then one of those states in that area. The fracking in North Dakota has changed that some in some areas though.

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