Alexandra Tselios

The “Weak” in U.S. Politics: July 25th 2016

Reading Harry Potter can lower your opinion of Trump, Debbie Wasserman Schultz resigns and is hired again by Hillary, and Obama’s brother explains why he is voting for Trump. It was truly the “weak” in U.S. politics.


The “Weak” in Politics as seen by Alexandra Tselios

Here in Australia we have a sports event called the URL*. It’s akin to your Super Bowl and it’s about States of Origin and beer drinking and people here in Australia are way dramatic about it—for example “I bleed blue” is to indicate the football team you love, because their logo is blue (or you also support Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and the myriad brands who have tapped into blue hues). Clever, huh? My point in mentioning this is we recently had an election here in Australia where the announcement of the winner (Malcolm Turnbull) was delayed by a whole week, and last week I was fixated on the Republican Convention. My feelings towards both these events and the excitement about this week’s Democratic National Convention is probably on par with URL lovers and Super Bowl/Beyonce fans. So, I get it.

We are all probably aware with every single detail from the past week, from Melania’s speech to an unfortunate hand gesture from Laura Ingraham. I won’t do a full recap here, but if you missed it and want a great analysis you can read a full rundown by The Big Smoke’s Nicholas Harrington. If nothing else, the Republican National Convention showed us how passionate Trump supporters are, from their “Hillary for Prison” signs to their lapping up of every semi-war cry that filled the room.

My favorite moment of the GOP Convention was Ted Cruz. Many previous GOP candidates who tussled with Trump came out on stage to meekly support him (I am looking at you, Carson). I never thought I would say this, but it was Cruz who proved he has guts with his “vote with your conscience—fight for freedom” speech refusing to endorse Trump and was booed off stage. The daggers from the Trump family and supporters was glorious. Influential donors have since criticized the speech saying, “Last summer and again this year, Senator Ted Cruz pledged to support the candidacy of the nominee of the Republican Party, whomever that nominee might be, we are profoundly disappointed that on Wednesday night he chose to disregard this pledge.”

Meanwhile, a study came out which finds reading Harry Potter lowers the opinion of Trump and the more Harry Potter books you read the less likely you are to support him. Random. Professor Diana Mutz from the University of Pennsylvania found, “Because Trump’s political views are widely viewed as opposed to the values espoused in the Harry Potter series … exposure to the Potter series may play an influential role in influencing how Americans respond to Donald Trump.” The study found that each Harry Potter book read actually lowered respondents’ evaluations of Donald Trump by approximately two to three points on a scale of one hundred points.

Michael Moore has also come out with his 5 reasons we will see a President Trump, citing the four traditionally Democratic states electing Republican governors, and the Hillary Clinton issue. Moore makes the point that while he once promised never to vote for Clinton after her vote for the war in Iraq, he is now breaking his promise for the sake of “preventing a proto-fascist from becoming our commander-in-chief.”  His article will strike fear in Clinton supporters and draw a satisfying grin from Trump supporters.

So this week, we prepare for the Democratic National Convention where we have already seen Debbie Wasserman Schultz resign as the Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee after the Wikileaks email scandal. Within what felt like seconds, Debbie was appointed honorary chair of Hillary Clinton’s 50-state program aimed at electing Democrats around the country. The appointment of Debbie in the Clinton campaign right off the back of the scandal will no doubt put Clinton in a weaker position, considering the whole scandal was around Clinton being given unfair preferential treatment by Debbie. This doesn’t help, guys.

Michael Bloomberg plans to endorse Clinton after describing Trump as a threat to American security, and who had said previously, “As the race stands now, with Republicans in charge of both Houses, there is a good chance that my candidacy could lead to the election of Donald Trump. That is not a risk I can take in good conscience.” Bloomberg will speak at the Democratic National Convention this Wednesday and is expected to officially endorse Clinton then.


In other random news, Obama’s half-brother, Malik Obama, has come out to say he is voting for Donald Trump explaining “Make America Great Again is a great slogan. I would like to meet him,” and his deep disappointment in his brother’s administration.

I am both scared and excited for the week to come!


*I know the football is not called URL, it’s NRL but I don’t care.


The “Weak” in Politics as seen by Roger Pugh

Heard at Democratic Party HQ
“What is the essential difference between Bill and Hillary?”
“She readily shares all her secrets.”

Heard at Republican Party HQ
“I never dreamed I’d see Trump at a Republican Convention.”
“Well, take a good look because I’ve got a feeling this will be his last.”

Heard at the Republican Convention
“Do you think there’s any chance Trump can bring the U.S. together?”
“Only if we’re attacked by his relatives from another planet.”

Heard in Congress
“Who do you think Hillary will pick as her running mate?”
“Personally, I think it should be either someone from the FBI or her parole officer.”

Heard in a Cleveland Bar
“At least Trump could save us from both the Clinton and the Bush dynasties.”
“But then we’ll need the Terminator to save us from the Trump dynasty.”

Heard at Yankee Stadium
“I’m surprised Trump didn’t pick Chris Christie as his running mate.”
“He plans to use him as a temporary block on the Southern Border until Mexico stumps up the money for the wall.”




Alexandra Tselios

Founder and CEO of The Big Smoke, Alexandra oversees the leading opinion site in both Australia and the USA. As a social commentator, she is interviewed most days of the week on radio across the country in Australia as well as working with NFP think-tank, Plus61J, which explores the political and social ties between Australia and Israel.

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