A few days ago, Trump floated the idea that he would campaign in Virginia for Glenn Youngkin-- in northern Virginia's Arlington County, no less. Virginia is 63% fully vaccinated. Arlington County is considerably ahead of the state average-- 68% vaccinated. Trump is not respected or liked in the highly educated suburban county and last year he drew just 17.1% of the county's votes. It's very much not like the rural Trump counties in the state, such as Carroll (31% fully vaccinated, 80.9% Trump voters), Norton (31% fully vaccinated, 69.3% Trump voters), Appomattox (32% fully vaccinated, 72.3% Trump voters), Craig (32% fully vaccinated, 80.0% Trump voters) and Bland 35% fully vaccinated, 83.4% Trump voters). The Youngkin campaign asked that Trump and his menagerie of creeps stay out of the state but grudgingly approved a Trump zoom session with neo-fascist voters, his own people.
Arlington County is hardly the only place in America where people have tremendous antipathy for Trump. FiveThirtyEight's aggregate polling shows Trump's national favorability in the toilet by double digits-- 53.0% to 41.4%. The most recent poll they used-- this week's YouGov survey for The Economist-- has Trump's unfavorables at 57% and his favorables at just 40%.
Americans' disdain for Trump has impacted his real estate empire and business brands negatively. Reporting for Reuters this morning, Joseph Tanfani wrote that Señor Trumpanzee's "slashing rhetorical style and divisive politics allowed him to essentially take over the Republican Party. His supporters are so devoted that most believe his false claim that he lost the 2020 election because of voter fraud. But the same tactics that have inspired fierce political loyalty have undermined Trump’s business, built around real-estate development and branding deals that have allowed him to make millions by licensing his name. Trump’s business brand was once synonymous with wealth and success, an image that now clashes sharply with a political brand rooted in the anger of his largely rural and working-class voter base. His presidency is now associated in the minds of many with its violent end, as supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. Those searing images, along with years of bitter rhetoric, are costing Trump money. Revenues from some of his high-end properties have declined, vacancies in office buildings have increased and his lenders are warning that the company’s revenues may not be sufficient to cover his debt payments, according to Trump’s financial disclosures as president, Trump Organization records filed with government agencies, and reports from companies that track real-estate company finances."
Prospective tenants in New York are shunning his buildings, one real-estate broker said, to avoid being associated with Trump. Organizers of golf tournaments have pulled events from his courses.
Trump’s focus on the political brand has increasingly overtaken his identity as a real-estate mogul, says one hospitality industry veteran.
...Trump is now making a second attempt to sell his lease on one high-profile property, the Trump International Hotel, housed in a former federal building in Washington, D.C., after failing to secure a buyer at the original asking price of $500 million. Meanwhile, the business is paying the federal government $3 million annually in lease payments, according to documents released earlier this month by the House Oversight Committee of the U.S. Congress. Those records show Trump’s Washington hotel lost more than $73 million since 2016.
...In Trump’s home base of New York, the Trump name has become increasingly toxic. One high-profile property, the Trump SoHo hotel in lower Manhattan, was rebranded the Dominick in 2017. New York City in January canceled his leases on a golf course, two Central Park skating rinks and a carousel; Trump has sued the city for wrongful termination of the golf course lease.
At 40 Wall Street, the 72-story skyscraper that was among Trump’s proudest acquisitions, problems that started before the pandemic have gotten worse, according to reports from firms that track real-estate performance. After the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots, some of Trump’s large tenants, including the Girl Scouts and a nonprofit called TB Alliance, said they were exploring whether they could get out of their leases. One commercial real-estate broker says many prospective tenants won’t consider the building because Trump’s name is on it.
That's exactly what Youngkin is afraid of-- moderate and swing voters declining to consider him with Trump's brand on him. McAuliffe, on the other hand has brought many popular Democratic politicians to Virginia to campaign with him, particularly Obama and Biden. That same YouGov survey cited above also measured favorables and unfavorables for other political figures. These are national numbers for registered, not Virginia numbers:
Obama- 54% favorable/42% unfavorable (+12)
Biden- 48% favorable/48% unfavorable (0)
Pelosi- 38% favorable/55% unfavorable (-17)
Kevin McCarthy- 26% favorable/46% unfavorable (-20)
McConnell- 22% favorable/66% unfavorable (-44)
Schumer- 34% favorable/48% unfavorable (-14)
Señor Trumpanzee- 40% favorable/57% unfavorable (-17)
No one in their right mind would bring highly divisive figures like McConnell, McCarthy, Pelosi, Schumer or Trump to campaigner them in a competitive statewide race-- private fundraising sessions, absolutely, public... pass.
Do you think any Democrat in a statewide race would invited someone like Manchin or Sinema to campaign for them? I don't think so-- more has anyone. On the other hand, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy just invited Bernie Sanders to come to his state for a very public event. Like Biden, Bernie has a net zero approval among registered votes-- 47% favorable, 47% unfavorable, but among Democrats that favorable number skyrockets 82% (14% unfavorable), meaning that in a Democratic state like New Jersey, Bernie is a perfect candidate to help turn out the voters.
Yesterday, NJ.com reported that Bernie's event in New Brunswick on the Rutger's campus with Murphy "felt more like an indie-rock concert than a political rally." Students chanted "Bernie!" wildly. They know that, unlike most other politicians-- including most other Democrats; imagine their own crooked greed-obsessed senator, Bob Menendez on that stage ducking eggs and rotten fruits-- Bernie fights for them and for Justice. And he fights for them and for Justice because its what he believes in, not because it's what is politically expedient. "He energized the crowd with his trademark call to revamp government to better help the young and working-class-- a message that has long drawn him a devoted following among college-age Americans."
And while Sanders was the clearly main attraction, the former presidential candidate repeatedly championed Murphy as a vessel for that message and urged the audience to help vote the Democratic governor into a second term Tuesday.
“I am here because your governor is one of the most progressive, if not the most progressive, governors in America,” Sanders, an independent from Vermont, said. “And because he stands for working people, working people stand for him.”
The evening encapsulated Murphy’s high-profile get-out-the-voter effort in the waning days of his race against Republican challenger Jack Ciattarelli. Sanders is the latest in a parade of big-name politicians to appear alongside Murphy in New Jersey, home to one of only two governor’s races in the nation this year (along with Virginia).
Sanders arrived only days after visits by President Joe Biden and former President Barack Obama. Former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband, Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff also joined Murphy in recent weeks.
No Pelosi. No Schumer. No Sinema. No Manchin... although all of their names have been in the headlines over the last couple of months and they are constantly on TV or being discussed on TV. And none of them are considered champions of working people, let alone of Justice. "'Murphy called Sanders a political icon who has been a clarion call for progressive politics for decades,' wrote Brent Johnson. "'New Jersey is proving that what he stands for can work for the United States of America,' the governor said."
Murphy's right-wing opponent, some guy named Ciattarelli, knew better than to invite Trump to a public rally in New Jersey, not even in the 7 politically backward counties where Trump beat Biden last year (New Jersey is 66% fully vaccinated but the same morons who voted for Trump have refused to get vaccinated):
Ocean Co.- 63.5% Trump (49% fully vaccinated)
Sussex Co.- 58.5% Trump (56% fully vaccinated)
Cape May Co.- 57.2% Trump (66% fully vaccinated)
Warren Co.- 56.9% Trump (61% fully vaccinated)
Salem Co.- 55.3% Trump (48% fully vaccinated)
Hunterdon Co.- 50.9% Trump (63% fully vaccinated)
Monmouth Co.- 50.7% Trump (61% fully vaccinated)
Johnson reported that National Republicans mocked Murphy for inviting Bernie to speak last night, using the laughable stock phrases popularized by Fox News and Hate Talk radio by ignored by normal people.
“Bernie Sanders will alienate more voters than he will attract, which is the last thing Phil Murphy needs,” Republican National Committee spokeswoman Rachel Lee said. “Extreme agendas are nothing new for Murphy, but with the race’s tight margin, you’d think the Murphy camp would at least try to keep it in check.”
Will Reinhart, a spokesman for the Republican Governors Association, said Murphy “gave the stiff arm to independents and invited the avowed socialist Bernie Sanders to campaign with him as Democratic voters’ enthusiasm to show up at the poles takes a nosedive.”
...Sanders’ speech at Rutgers came hours after Biden announced what he called an “historic” deal on federal spending plans that have been debated by different wings of the Democratic Party for weeks. Democrats are still searching for final votes to pass the $1.5 trillion package.
The plans are scaled back from what was originally proposed, with some progressive provisions-- including family leave and tuition-free community college-- stripped out.
But Sanders called it “the most consequential legislation in this history of this country for working families.”
He said it will help “restore the faith of the American people that their government can work for them and not just special interests.”
I asked Sergio Alcubilla, the progressive congressional candidate in the crucial race to replace Blue Dog Steve Case, how he'd feel if Case invited Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema to campaign for him on Oahu. He laughed and said Case would be showing his true colors if he did." Case, he said, "did not do the people of Hawai‘i any favors by weakening President Biden's Build Back Better agenda together with these senators. As part of the 'asinine nine' that worked with Manchin and Sinema to block much needed help for the people of Hawai‘i, they stripped paid leave, universal child care, reason prescription drug prices and resources we need to fight the real impact of climate change here in Hawai‘i, especially in Honolulu, out of Biden's proposal. Senators Manchin and Sinema should hold up Rep. Case as their favorite Blue Dog when it comes to being loyal to the interests of their corporate donors."
There are good reasons why voters admire and even love Bernie, while reviling McConnell, Trump, Sinema and Manchin. This was Bernie and Murphy last night in New Brunswick: