Dem 51
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GOP 49
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Trump's a Loser

In court, that is. Since 2015, Donald Trump's been an admitted pu**y grabber, and now a court has confirmed it. The jury was not willing to go so far as to find that he committed a rape, but they did take just 2½ hours to find him liable for sexual abuse and for defamation. The former president has been ordered to pay $5 million to E. Jean Carroll; $2 million for the assault and $3 million for the defamation.

This means that anyone who describes Trump as a rapist is not supported in that by a court finding. On the other hand it would be correct to say he's a sexual assaulter, or a sexual predator. The jury's finding most certainly supports those descriptors. It would also be fair to conclude that most or all of the other women who have accused Trump of various misdeeds are telling the truth. Sexual assault is rarely a one-time thing, and so once the first incident is proven, additional incidents are basically assumed. When you have actual people confirming those additional incidents, well, that approaches slam-dunk territory.

Trump has already gone into full spin mode, as you can imagine. He took to his boutique social media platform to offer up this response when the verdict was read:


Presumably, he believes that such assertions serve to underscore his innocence. From where we sit, however, the message is more like "I've done this enough times that I can't even keep the incidents straight anymore."

The former president has also, with lightning speed, managed to make himself into the victim here. He is claiming that he was "not allowed to speak or defend myself." It is true, of course, that he did not speak or defend himself at the trial. It is also equally true that was either his decision, or the decision of someone who works for him. It was not the deep state, or the Clinton judge who oversaw the case, or the Globalists, or George Soros, or Joe Biden, or Hillary, or anyone else who was responsible for that. Anyone who believes that Trump's rights have been trampled on here would have to be almost wholly ignorant about U.S. civics. Which, truth be told, pretty much describes Trump's base.

Trump's allies in the media are doing their best to help him muddy the waters and/or sweep this under the carpet. Here is what the front page is The New York Post looked like early Tuesday evening:

The lead story and headline, taking up 70% of the page, is about Dylan Mulvaney, though
the Trump story is in the 'trending' column on the right

As you can see, the truly big news of the day is how a beer company's sales are being affected by a trans influencer. Here's Fox at the same time:

Fox's lead story is about MTV news, while the Mulvaney story also gets attention. Trump is
unmentioned, except that he's in the small list of trending stories at the top

Fox is on top of the trans story as well (how did we fail to cover it?), but they see the end of MTV News as the real story of the day. You will note that neither outlet has included the Trump verdict among its top items, but that readers of both sites have nonetheless put the Trump verdict into the "trending" stories. We really don't know what that means; maybe the readership wants to know even if the NYP and Fox don't particularly want to tell them, or maybe the readership is just looking for a place to post snotty comments about how this is all a witch hunt, and how St. Donald of Trump is a martyr. In any case, we seem to recall a conscious effort on the part of the Murdoch-owned newspapers to distance themselves from Trump. Not covering this story in a meaningful way, and thus de facto toting the former president's water, would seem to suggest that Rupert & Co. have thought better of that decision.

Meanwhile, the outspokenly and unwaveringly pro-Trump Newsmax also buried the story completely:

Newsmax has no mention of the Trump story at all

And the outspokenly and unwaveringly pro-Trump OAN stuck the story in the sixth slot:

OAN has Trump as the sixth story; above it are items about Dianne
Feinstein, Tucker Carlson and Harlan Crow, among others

It's rather interesting; although we would rank things differently from OAN, we actually think their choice of stories is not too far off. Their top six and our top six actually overlap a lot more than is the case with any of these other outlets. Maybe that says something about OAN. Or about us.

Non-Trumpy Senate Republicans, among them John Cornyn (R-TX) and Mitt Romney (R-UT), have already reacted to the verdict, in a manner that is predictable, and yet also makes you feel a little bit sorry for them. Basically, their view is that once a court has confirmed that you are a sexual predator, you should no longer be a viable presidential candidate, and yet... this is not going to affect Trump's political career much, if at all. You can practically hear them sighing sighs of resignation.

It's hard to disagree with that. With the former president having danced around "rapist," and with his spin operation already working at full blast (with assistance from his media supporters), he might well convince the base that this is much ado about nothing. And the base is all that he cares about. We'll have to see if he can pull it off, especially if he piles up a few more indictments and/or convictions in the next 12 months or so. Oh, and he says he's going to appeal, but we wonder if he ultimately thinks better of that. He's got a weak case, and yet as good a result, PR-wise, as he could have hoped for, short of exoneration. May be best for him, politically, to give this story as little additional oxygen as is possible. (Z)

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