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April 08, 2016

Trump Conceding Colorado to Cruz?


The background here is that Colorado elects its delegates in a series of congressional district conventions that take place on different days, and that Trump's pointman for the state was just fired and replaced by another guy on Tuesday.

Colorado is not going well for Donald Trump.

After a shake-up at the top this week in which Trump empowered Paul Manafort to manage the campaign’s troubled delegate operation, Sen. Ted Cruz swept a third straight Congressional District convention Thursday night. All three of the delegates selected by local party members were listed on a slate put forward by the Cruz campaign. Four more districts choose delegates on Friday and another 13 are up for grabs at the state convention on Saturday.

Trump aides concede that Colorado is not a promising state, but the level of disorganization at Thursday’s event suggested problems that ran deeper than the top-line results.

Addressing the audience, Trump’s new Colorado state director Patrick Davis told supporters to vote for the three pro-Trump delegate candidates on a glossy brochure the campaign distributed.

"Look for them on the back when you vote Donald Trump!” Davis said. “He’s going to make America great again!"

There was only one problem: Two of the three names weren’t listed on the ballot.
"That’s a good question," Davis told reporters after his speech when asked why they were left off.

There were, however, three pro-Trump delegates on the ballot who weren't sanctioned by the campaign. One of them, Cully Marshall, made his case for Trump in a poem.

"He’s our only hope against Hillary, that lying crooked witch," Marshall said. “He's going to build that wall and make Hillary El Chapo's personal...” He trailed off.

After some digging, Davis returned with a solution to the mystery of the missing delegates. One of the delegates had failed to pay the necessary fee to get on the ballot. He assumed the other was left off for similar reasons.

"Administrative error," he said.

Meanwhile, there's all sorts of drama in the DJT.

On Tuesday, Politico reported that the Trump campaign is "increasingly falling into disarray," conducting massive layoffs and dismantling what little infrastructure it has, including in key general-election states such as Ohio and Florida.

The campaign’s data team is now partly in the hands of "a 2015 college graduate whose last job was an internship with the consumer products company Colgate-Palmolive," wrote Politico, adding: "Some of the campaign’s data remains inaccessible."


Then, on Wednesday, Politico augmented its tale of woe, reporting that the Trump campaign is embroiled in a power struggle between campaign manager Corey Lewandowski (who two weeks ago was charged with misdemeanor battery in Florida) and Paul Manafort, the veteran Republican operative hired last month to be Trump’s convention manager. According to Politico, Lewandowski recently sacked the man in charge of Trump’s Colorado operation because he disobeyed Lewandowski and communicated with Manafort directly. The campaign now has no state chair.

Meanwhile, insiders say that Manafort has been considering leaving the campaign if he does not receive more support. (On Thursday, Trump announced that he was "consolidating the functions related to the nomination process and assigning them" to Manafort -- perhaps an attempt to demonstrate support.) Lewandowski, as is his way, denies all, maintaining that Trump has "the most cohesive, loyal staff, the most loving staff I have ever had the privilege of working with on a campaign."

Contrast this with the Cruz campaign, which has been almost entirely free of such problems.

Some people excuse Trump's failings by saying "he's learning on the fly."

But is he even doing that?

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posted by Ace at 01:41 PM

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