Favorites, Ruptures and Calling Out the Liars

Jonathan Bernstein is a Bloomberg View columnist. He taught political science at the University of Texas at San Antonio and DePauw University and wrote A Plain Blog About Politics.
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1. Good roundup from Dave Hopkins. I agree with his first four points, but I think he undervalues the possibility of a more serious rupture in the Republican Party.

2. More evidence that Hillary Clinton is the favorite to win in November, from Tobias Konitzer and David Rothschild at the Monkey Cage. I’ll just add: Favorite, yes, but that’s all. Nothing close to a sure thing. And the biggest (known) variable remaining -- how well or how badly the Republican Party unites behind Donald Trump -- is extremely hard to predict.

3. Conor Friedersdorf makes the argument that Trump’s success, far from showing that the party was irrelevant, is actually evidence that folks such as Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh are simply much more important within the party than previously believed. That’s not entirely wrong, but as much as I’d like to agree with him, I think ultimately the evidence will show that’s at best a small piece of what has happened. Still, it bears further study.

4. Good Greg Sargent item on Trump’s overconfidence.

5. Kevin Drum is correct about the dilemma of covering a candidate who says false things constantly.

6. But some of this is easy: BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith is absolutely right that anyone covering Trump should be aware he’s flat-out lying about having opposed the Iraq War before it started, and they shouldn’t accept the lie.

7. Andre Tartar and Ben Brody at Bloomberg Politics on polls and prediction markets this year.

8. Nate Silver runs the numbers: No, Trump’s supporters aren’t typically working-class.

9. And Brian Beutler is very good on why some journalists are drawn to third-party dreams. Note that anti-partyism isn't confined to reporters. And it's not just about ideology; anti-party sentiment is often based on anti-democratic wishing that conflicting interests didn't exist, or that a "national interest" is superior to "special" private and group interests. 

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Jonathan Bernstein at jbernstein62@bloomberg.net

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Brooke Sample at bsample1@bloomberg.net