The Joni Ernst Watch 12/21/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Steve King may not be a scientist, or human for that matter, but he has a problem with the government funding science related to studying climate change:

I think the scientists that have been pushing this have collected a lot of money from donors in government and created a science that’s awfully hard to sustain.

What is hard to sustain is the constant drumbeat of climate denial from the right wing, which is finding itself as the only political movement in the developed world that actually thinks there is nothing wrong with our climate. Apparently, Steve King does not understand that the government funds scientists to do basic research. Maybe he understands, but he just does not like it when what they research conflicts with his worldview.

Iowa Republicans Rod Blum, David Young, and our favorite Steve King voted to shut down the government when they voted no on the omnibus spending bill.   Granted, it was a symbolic vote because all three knew the votes for passage existed. They still wanted to be little dicks and “stick it to the man” one more time before the new year. There is absolutely nothing better than electing people to government office who have no intention of actually trying to run an effective government.

On the 2016 Iowa caucus front things are getting interesting for the Republicans. The Democrats’ race is essentially decided.

While Ted Cruz has “surged” to the lead in a few polls ahead of Donald Trump there may be some interesting bias at play in the numbers. Unwilling to say that they support Donald Trump in person-to-person interviews, potential voters may be picking the next candidate on the list without actually intending to support that candidate.

The hard part for Donald Trump is that during the caucus you show your support in person rather than via ballot, so people better be ready to “stand with the Donald and make America great again.”

Ted Cruz, this week’s leader in the clubhouse, has done some slippery math to get his tax plan to work.

The Texas senator is also quickly becoming the default choice for a Republican establishment that is out of viable options.

All this circus has shown is that the GOP is quickly making itself irrelevant in national races. Sure , at state or congressional level the party and its policies can be relevant but when votes are pooled across the U.S. it is hopeless. Nate Silver did some interesting calculations where he showed that a plurality of far right-wing voters in the GOP primaries only comprise 6-8% of the general electorate. Thus, by pushing candidates to the right to satisfy their desires they support candidates who are anathema to a large swatch of voters.

Carly Fiorina is still hanging around, but her cavalcade of lies is starting to catch up to her and dominate the discussion about her candidacy. Her latest lie is to blame Obama for the retirement of a general who left service prior to Obama being elected to the Senate.  Naturally, she will stand behind the lie and blame the media in some capacity. I bet working for her at Hewlett-Packard was a blast.

Jack Welch wins this week’s non-Ted Cruz crazy statement of the week. The former CEO of GE said, well, let him explain it:

You can’t believe in my community of people 60 and over buying handguns.

Apparently, this has something to do with terrorism, Obama, and keeping Jack Welch relevant in a world that no longer fawns over his pseudo-business mumbo jumbo.

NOTE: There will be no Joni Ernst Watch on December 28th because I will be enjoying some skiing in Colorado with my family and friends.

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