The Morning Jolt

Trump’s Polls Are Like Hammer’s ‘U Can’t Touch This’: Bump, Bump, Bump . . .

As M.C. Hammer used to say, “Just for a minute, let’s all do the bump.” Bump, bump, bump . . .

Fresh out this morning:

A new Morning Consult poll taken after the Republican National Convention in Cleveland finds a significant boost for Donald Trump. Trump now leads Hillary Clinton for the first time ever in Morning Consult polling, 44 to 40.

Much of the shift can be attributed to a consolidation of the base among Republicans. Eighty-five percent of Republicans in the new poll said they would vote for Trump, compared with just less than eight in 10 Republicans (79 percent) from the week before.

The convention itself received a fair amount of attention from the public. More than half of voters (53 percent) said they listened to a lot or some of the convention.

Almost half (48 percent) rated Trump’s speech as good or excellent, which is essentially tied with the speech given by his daughter, Ivanka Trump, but higher than his running mate, Mike Pence, or RNC Chairman Reince Priebus.

CNN:

Donald Trump comes out of his convention ahead of Hillary Clinton in the race for the White House, topping her 44% to 39% in a four-way matchup including Gary Johnson (9%) and Jill Stein (3%) and by three points in a two-way head-to-head, 48% to 45%. That latter finding represents a 6-point convention bounce for Trump, which are traditionally measured in two-way matchups.

There hasn’t been a significant post-convention bounce in CNN’s polling since 2000. That year Al Gore and George W. Bush both boosted their numbers by an identical 8 points post-convention before ultimately battling all the way to the Supreme Court.

The 2016 USC Dornsife / LA Times Presidential Election Poll has Trump ahead, 45 percent to 41 percent.

Gravis, which doesn’t list Johnson or Stein or no opinion as options, has Trump ahead, 51 percent to 49 percent.

CBS is the skunk at the garden party:

Clinton and Trump each have the support of 42 percent of voters. Including voters who lean toward a candidate, Trump has a one-point edge. Support for both Trump and Clinton has increased by two points since before Trump’s convention and Clinton’s VP pick.

Now, Republicans shouldn’t necessarily break out the party hats yet. (Or since they’ve just returned from Cleveland, they shouldn’t keep their party hats and electric Trump capes on.) They’ve had four days to make their argument with minimal Democratic rebuttal. A candidate should be ahead at this moment. But these new numbers do take the wind out of the sails for those who argued Trump’s speech was too dark to be effective. Also note that Trump is hitting 44 percent in two of these polls, which would ordinarily be an awfully low ceiling. But if Hillary Clinton has enough troubles, and Johnson and Stein are keep taking a larger-than-normal portion of the vote, maybe 44 percent or so will be enough for Trump to win the popular vote.

America Is More Pro-Life Than the Media Thinks

Speaking of polling, take a moment to contemplate this figure: 62 percent of people who identify themselves as pro-choice want to limit abortion to the first three months.

Though 51 percent of Americans say they are pro-choice, about 8 in 10 Americans support substantial restrictions on abortion (78 percent), and would limit it to, at most, the first three months of pregnancy. This number includes 62 percent of those who identify as pro-choice, 85 percent of African Americans and 84 percent of Latinos.

Taxpayer funding for abortion is opposed by 62 percent of Americans. This includes 65 percent of African Americans, 61 percent of Latinos, and 45 percent of those who say they are pro-choice, as well as 84 percent of Republicans, 61 percent of Independents and 44 percent of Democrats.

Concerning the recent Supreme Court decision, Nearly 8 in 10 Americans (78 percent) want abortion clinics to be held to the same standards as other outpatient surgery centers. This includes 77 percent of African Americans and 82 percent of Latinos, as well as 77 percent of women, and 84 percent of millennials. About three quarters of those who identify as pro-choice (74 percent) agree, as do strong majorities regardless of party affiliation.

In addition, 70 percent of Americans want doctors who perform abortions to be required to have hospital admitting privileges. This includes 71 percent of women, 77 percent of millennials, and 78 percent of Latinos, Pro-life and pro-choice adherents are also equally likely to support such a requirement at a rate of 7 in 10 for each group (71 percent).

And by almost 20 points, a majority of Americans (56 percent to 37 percent) do not believe that healthcare providers should be forced to perform abortions against their conscience or religious beliefs. This includes 6 in 10 Latinos (61 percent) and 4 in 10 who identify as pro-choice (41 percent).

The survey of 1,009 adults was conducted July 5-12, 2016, by the Marist Institute for Public Opinion and sponsored by the Knights of Columbus.

The Russians Cross the Democrats’ Red Line: Appearing to Help the GOP

Let’s face it: Democrats don’t distrust Moscow for their militarism, their occupation of Crimea, their threats to NATO, or their cooperation with the Iranians and Syrians. The Democrats are finally angry at Vladimir Putin and Russia because they think they’ve done something to help the real enemy: the Republican nominee.

The New York Times points out that we’re living in topsy-turvy times, where the Democratic candidate is posing as the hawk against Russia and accusing the Republican nominee of being a stooge of Moscow:

Even at the height of the Cold War, it was hard to find a presidential campaign willing to charge that its rival was essentially secretly doing the bidding of a key American adversary. But the accusation is emerging as a theme of Mrs. Clinton’s campaign, as part of an attempt to portray Mr. Trump not only as an isolationist, but also as one who would go soft on confronting Russia as it threatens nations that have shown too much independence from Moscow or, in the case of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, joined NATO.

Actually, flip the terms “rival” and “key American adversary.” They’re not charging that Trump is helping Russia; they’re charging that Russia is helping Trump.

I’m old enough to remember when a “reset button” was going to make Putin’s Russia our friend!

The WikiLeaks hacking of the Democratic National Committee is terrible . . . but also delicious.

Some of the revelations are not that surprising.

It’s not surprising that Black Lives Matter activist and former Baltimore mayoral candidate DeRay Mckesson was vetted as a possible surrogate for the DNC.

Donna Brazile was always fairly open about her preference for Hillary Clinton to Bernie Sanders, although it’s a little bit surprising to hear her discussing a desire to “cuss out the Sanders camp.”

DNC staffers calling MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki a “hipster pitbull”? Okay, I didn’t see that coming.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz calling up Phil Griffin, MSNBC President, to complain after Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski called for Schultz to “step down”? That just confirms our suspicions that Democrats are more sensitive about press criticism and have more backdoor avenues to shut it down or discourage follow-ups.

Will the resignation of Debbie Wasserman Schultz placate the Bernie Sanders delegates and fans? Why should it? The damage is done.

ADDENDA: In case you missed it on Friday, back in 2005, Tim Kaine ran as a conservative to get elected governor of Virginia: Pro-life, vehemently opposed to gun control, opposed to gay marriage, supporting tax cuts, and opposing tax increases. He bent first on tax increases, then guns, then abortion, and then gay marriage. In short, he’s whatever he needs to be to get to the next office.

Maybe Kaine and Hillary bonded over how lucrative life in elected office can be. While he was governor, Kaine received $186,899 in gifts and travel — Redskins tickets, cases of wine, et cetera. He didn’t get in legal trouble the way Bob McDonnell did because he disclosed all of the gifts on the proper forms.

Finally, thanks to everyone following on Twitter; this sounds like a lot to me:

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