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DNC - Getty Images/Baltimore Sun
by Steve Timmer
Aug 2, 2016, 4:30 PM

A David Schultz reader

Hamline’s Professor David Schultz has had a series of insightful posts about the presidential race on his blog, Schultz’s Take. Professor Schultz writes stories here once in a while, and I am tempted to crib his latest batch en masse. But I will make you go over to his blog instead.

You might start with this one: An American Coup. Here’s the lede:

It was not so much that he made America great again, but when Donald Trump was elected president on November 8, 2016, he transformed the United States in ways that few, including he, could have imagined.

Right from the start establishment politicians and pundits just never understood Trump.  He was consistently derided as having no chance.

On July 25th, Professor Schultz also penned a post about Nate Silver:

Trump’s Bump–Why Nate Silver Finally Agrees with Me!

For a long time, Nate Silver was saying that Donald Trump was like the guy in Dumb and Dumber with the one in a million chance to get the girl. He amended that recently, as Professor Schultz recounts:

More significantly Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight has changed his election prediction model.  Prior to the RNC he gave Clinton approximately an 80% chance of winning.  Now he says that if the election were held today he would give Trump a 57.5% chance of winning.

The new prediction from Silver coincided with the Great Liberal Freakout that many of you have undoubtedly noticed on your social media feeds.

On the 29th of July, the professor published a piece entitled The Coming Clinton Post-Convention Bump and the Election of Fear. He gave the nod to the Democrats for a better convention, but panned Hillary Clinton’s speech for the same reason he’s panned her campaign:

[T]he speech was powerful in criticizing Trump but thin in offering her narrative about her vision for her presidency.  She offered a few brief micro-narratives about what she wants to do, but like Trump’s speech it too was thin on policy specifics.  It had some policy ideas but not details.  This is course has been the problem with her campaign all along–no grand narrative but a promise of incrementalism that is hard to excite anyone.  [I]t is also not clear that selling incrementalism and tinkering with the status quo sells in a year when so many people want change and anti-establishment is the theme of 2016.

Here’s the lede from Professor Schultz’s latest piece on August 1st:

So the story that now emerges out of the DNC is how the best speech on Thursday night if not the entire convention was Khirzr Kahn.  It has over-shadowed Hillary Clinton’s and through the weekend the media went apoplectic over how Donald Trump responded first in attacking the Kahn’s and then in declaring  “While I feel deeply for the loss of his son, Mr. Khan who has never met me, has no right to stand in front of millions of people and claim I have never read the Constitution, (which is false) and say many other inaccurate things.”

As the professor points out, Mr. Kahn was engaging in a right guaranteed at the core of the First Amendment: political speech. It’s even protected if it was wrong, so long as it wasn’t malicious, under the celebrated New York Times v. Sullivan decision.

As an aside, though, I have to say that Mr. Kahn doesn’t really know if Donald Trump has read the Constitution. There is no way he could know that, unless Donald Trump admitted it to him. It was a statement made without foundation, as lawyers say. If I were Donald Trump, and thankfully I am not, I would be upset by Mr. Kahn’s remark, too. Trump just phrased his objection inartfully.

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