Michigan Madness: Donald Trump, Joe Biden Head To Winter Wonderland

America’s former president looks for a fifth win in Michigan, while the incumbent braces for a revolt on his left flank …

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Although it’s a few days shy of qualifying as ‘March Madness,’ Michigan has been gripped by electoral fever nonetheless. Republican and Democrats head to the polls on Tuesday for the Wolverine State’s quadrennial presidential primary elections.

Both contests promise to be anything but boring …

On the GOP side, former president Donald Trump is poised to snag what could be his biggest win to date. After breezing through the New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries (and the Iowa and Nevada caucuses), he’s hoping to extend his win record to 5-0 with a big Michigan victory.

The latest polls from the Great Lakes State suggest he has reason to be optimistic. An Emerson College survey released just yesterday showed him enjoying a whopping 51 percent lead over his sole remaining Republican rival, Nikki Haley. Meanwhile a Morning Consult poll even puts his lead at 60 percent.

Those are the kinds of numbers candidates dream about …



For Haley, the news keeps going from bad to worse. She hobbled into Michigan, still smarting from last Saturday’s 20-point shellacking in her home state of South Carolina. In an argument that’s eerily similar to that line from The Wizard of Oz (“Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain! I am Oz!”), Haley plugs ahead, lecturing Republicans that she — and she alone — can spare America the perils of a second Biden or Trump term.

Unfortunately for her, a majority of Republicans aren’t buying it. From the cornfields of Iowa to the Granite Hills of New Hampshire, from the deserts of Nevada to the shoreline of her native Palmetto State, Haley has yet to win a single contest. Anywhere. And the smart money says that record will remain unbroken in Michigan on Tuesday.

Speaking of money, Haley’s inability to put a ‘W’ on the scoreboard is making her donors extremely jittery. The first to stop cutting high-dollar checks to her campaign was billionaire Charles Koch. The political action wing of his Americans for Prosperity organization announced to its staffers on Sunday that the group is shifting its vast resources away from the former governor, redirecting the money toward more promising House and Senate races.

Team Haley must be wondering, “Is that the first domino to fall?”



Over in the Democratic Camp, stomach acid is churning inside Joe Biden’s campaign HQ. As an incumbent with only the most modest of token opposition (Minnesota Congressman Dean Phillips is still running against him), it should be “all systems go” for an easy win on Tuesday.

Should be … but it isn’t.

That’s because the folks in the party’s woke/progressive, far-left wing have drawn a line in the sand (or in the snow, as it were) in Michigan. And they’re using it to go after Biden’s political jugular.

Biden’s support for Israel in its war against Hamas has become an increasingly thorny issue within the Democratic Party. Moderates and traditional liberals are generally in Biden’s corner when it comes to his administration’s handling of the conflict, but not the far left. Egged on by the handful of perpetually exasperated House radicals known as the “Squad,” Biden isn’t extreme enough for their taste. Michigan congresswoman and “Squad” rabble-rouser Rashida Tlaib is making it her mission to make their party’s president feel pain at the polls Tuesday.

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U.S. president Joe Biden (The White House)

Tlaib is cheerleading the so-called “Listen to Michigan” campaign. It’s asking Democrats to vote “uncommitted” in the primary. Organizers hope to get 10,000 of those “uncommitted” ballots – roughly the same number of votes that Trump carried Michigan by back in 2016. If that reminder isn’t enough, the campaign has an even blunter message to Biden: “Change your tune on the Israel-Hamas War — pronto — or we’ll sit our November’s election. And if we do, you and Dr. Jill will need U-Haul to get your stuff back to Delaware.”

Tlaib and friends got some 11th-hour left wing support over the weekend when progressive pinup boy and grandstander extraordinaire Beto O’Rourke announced he’s totally behind “Listen to Michigan.” Just how much influence a former Texas congressman and failed gubernatorial and Senate candidate will have at the opposite end of the country is debatable. But Beto enthusiastically plugged the campaign while visiting Michigan to — not so coincidentally — plug his new book, too.

If the “uncommitted” ploy scores a significant number of votes Tuesday, it could make an already weakened president (remember that anemic turnout he received in South Carolina a few weeks back?) look even weaker.

So … Biden is battling blazes on his left flank. Haley is frantically trying to find a state what will put in her in the win column. And Trump chugs on, sounding more and more these days like a candidate who already sees himself as his party’s nominee.



Mark Powell (Provided)

J. Mark Powell is an award-winning former TV journalist, government communications veteran, and a political consultant. He is also an author and an avid Civil War enthusiast. Got a tip or a story idea for Mark? Email him at mark@fitsnews.com.



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