Craig Shirley and John Zogby discuss Donald Trump’s speech at Liberty University

Craig Shirley, presidential historian, and John Zogby, pollster, join a round table discussion on Donald Trump’s speech at Liberty University and the importance of evangelicals in the presidential election. Plus, has Marco Rubio hurt his campaign by coming out and saying law-abiding illegal immigrants should be allowed to stay? Also, the feud between Trump and Ted Cruz intensifies, but who will be the loser in this war on words?

Before, During and After the Fall. Predicting the Fall of Hillary Before and Again


Hillary Unqualified to Be President

By Craig Shirley   |   Wednesday, 02 Sep 2015 09:58 AM

The American presidency is not for haters. It is for lovers of liberty, freedom, the Constitution, and the rule of law. The American presidency is not for people like Hillary Clinton.

She is unqualified to be president because she is a hater. She is unqualified because she lacks the temperament to be president of the United States.

Harry Truman once said the job of a president is to say yes and no — but mostly no. Hillary Clinton has never understood this basic concept, saying yes to the wrong people and no to the right people.

She has yes to Wall Street, getting in bed with corrupt bankers and brokers. But she’s said no to those brave souls who wonder why Planned Parenthood acts like Dr. Mengele when it comes to innocent babies.

Hillary Rodham has finally hit bottom, though considering her noxious past, it is difficult to imagine her going downhill any farther. Suffice to say, this is a deeply troubled woman and a frankly not very bright one either. After all, how many times has her integrity been questioned?

She has never exhibited original thinking and naïvely believes that government is a panacea to all, with her and her cronies at the top, of course. She may have the most rose colored glasses in this regard since — Barack Obama.

Hillarycare failed because it was a Rube Goldberg bureaucracy. To the collectivist eye, the organizational chart for Hillarycare got them all hot and bothered, but to the sane, it was a bureaucratic disaster designed not to solve but to gain control.

Now Mrs. Clinton equated Republicans who opposed the heinous and evil practices of Planned Parenthood performed on unborn babies to “terrorists.” Really.

Funny, but I thought playing with baby parts as if they were a croquet set was more akin to terrorism, and not valiant attempts to save human lives.

Hillary Rodham Clinton is an angry and vengeful woman and the country does not need another president acting on their hatred. Didn’t Obama just compare Republicans to the Mullahs of Iran?

Lord knows Donald Trump has caught a lot of grief for impolitic remarks, but calling someone a terrorist is about the worst thing that could be said about another American.

It is despicable and certainly unpresidential. She politicizies everything, showing not compassion for anyone or anything she deems standing in her path to power. Any person who craves the power of the presidency too much is by definition unqualified to be president.

Men and women should approach the power of the presidency with awe and reverence and reserve, and not like a junkie.

Barack Obama said the presidency was great because it allowed him to do anything. How childish. FDR, more reverentially, said the power of the presidency was derived from the American people.

Many of us knew this day would come.

The real Hillary would and has emerged and it is not pretty nor is it presidential. It is gruesome, mean, cruel and yes, shows hers inferior character. Imagine just for one moment Hillary with power — especially the power of the Oval Office.

Would there be anything beyond her ken?

More than once in her past, she’s tried to censor Rush Limbaugh and all of talk radio.

One can easily imagine her siccing the IRS on all Republicans, all conservatives. One can easily imagine her abusing power and loving every second of it. She is Richard Nixon incarnate, only meaner and more vengeful. Of course, she could keep the IRS busy just harassing Bill’s many lovers.

It is unclear that she was always such. She may have once been a decent person, hard as that is for some to believe. Perhaps. Perhaps she turned bad, a victim of spousal abuse, at the hands of her forever philandering husband. Bill Clinton has had more easy women than Ashley Madison.

A recent poll played a word association game with Hillary and the American people. Did ethical come up? No. Did nurturing? No. Kindness, forbearance, charity, integrity? No, no, no, and no. But words such as liar, criminal, dishonest, and untrustworthy were most recently cited by the citizenry when Hillary’s name was mentioned.

The American people are wise, wiser than the elites give them credit for. Shakespeare said the eyes were windows to the soul. In Hillary’s eyes there is nothing but contempt and hatred.

James Madison, John Jay, and Alexander Hamilton wrote in the Federalist Papers often that the only two qualifications for the presidency were experience and character.

By virtue of her poor character, Hillary Rodham Clinton is unqualified to be president.



Zogby, Shirley: Clinton as Nominee Not a Sure Thing

By Bill Hoffmann   |   Monday, 26 Oct 2015 04:54 PM

Does Hillary Clinton’s well-reviewed appearance before the House Select Committee on Benghazi make her quest for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination a sure thing?

Absolutely not, veteran pollster John Zogby, CEO of Zogby Analytics, and Craig Shirley, a presidential historian and principal at Shirley & Banister Public Affairs, said Monday on “Newsmax Prime” with J.D. Hayworth.

“No. No, no, no. She’s had a very good 10 days, there’s no question about it, and she’s soared in those 10 days — [but] this is far from over,” Zogby said.

“Democrats have this very powerful half a party of progressives. Let’s go back to [Sen. Eugene] McCarthy and [Sen. George] McGovern and [Sen.] Ted Kennedy and [Sen.] Gary Hart and so on down the road and they have a voice in [Sen.] Bernie Sanders.

“Bernie’s doing well in Iowa and he’s doing very well in New Hampshire. This is not a lock yet. Stay tuned.”

Shirley added that while Clinton can rest a bit easier, she’s not out of the woods.

“She gave herself a little breathing room, but I agree with John, that in non-incumbent years, the Democratic Party never nominates its front-runner,” Shirley said.

“Only once in 1984 did they nominate the front-runner, Walter Mondale, and he almost lost to Gary Hart … In fact, I’ll go so far to say is that Hillary will not be the nominee.”

Zogby is author of “First Globals: Understanding, Managing, & Unleashing the Potential of Our Millennial Generation,” written with Joan Snyder Kuhl and sold by Amazon Digital Services.

Shirley is the author of “Last Act: The Final Years and Emerging Legacy of Ronald Reagan,” published by Thomas Nelson.

Haley Goes Full Establishment


South Carolina governor bashes Trump & abandons the GOP base that elected her

by Brendan Kirby

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s “rebuttal” to the State of the Union address may well have marked the completion of her journey from the Tea Party to the Establishment.

Mirroring the trajectory of so many Republicans who campaign on conservative principles and then settle into the Establishment after getting elected, Haley has abandoned the people who elected her.

Tuesday night, she decided to use the platform of a prime time State of the Union GOP response to undermine the leading Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump.

“Today, we live in a time of threats like few others in recent memory. During anxious times, it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices,” she said, an obvious reference to Trump. “We must resist that temptation.”

Then, while saying she opposed illegal immigration, she suggested any immigrant who loves America should be welcome, no matter, presumably, whose job they may be taking.

“No one who is willing to work hard, abide by our laws, and love our traditions should ever feel unwelcome in this country,” she said.

Haley had burst onto the national scene in 2010 with her upset Republican primary victory in the gubernatorial race, a campaign in which she ran as an unabashed tea party supporter who became one of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s “mamma grizzlies.”

During a 2011 interview with Sean Hannity, she tipped her hat to the populist wave that had put her in office.

“I think the people spoke loud and clear in the last election,” she said. “President Obama needs to admit this is a terrible mistake for our states.”

Ironically, just this past November, she gave voice to the very sentiments that are driving support for Trump.

“You have a lot of people who were told that if we got a majority in the House and a majority in the Senate, then life was gonna be great,” she said. “What you’re seeing is that people are angry. Where’s the change? Why aren’t there bills on the president’s desk every day for him to veto? They’re saying, ‘Look, what you said would happen didn’t happen, so we’re going to go with anyone who hasn’t been elected.’”

Trump, appearing on “Fox & Friends” Wednesday, struck back.

“Well, considering I’m leading in the polls by a lot, I wouldn’t say she’s off to a good start based on what she just said,” Trump deadpanned when asked on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends” if he would consider her as a running mate.

Lest there be any doubt that Haley had Trump in mind when she make her remarks, she confirmed on the “Today” show Wednesday that he was one of the voices she was referring to.

“Mr. Trump has definitely contributed to what I think is irresponsible talk,” she said.

The setting of Haley’s remarks — a forum ostensibly designed to offer an alternative vision from the party in the White House — took many observers by surprise. Historian Craig Shirley said on “The Laura Ingraham Show” said Haley’s rebuttal is the first he can remember when a politician used the forum to criticize his or her own party.

Shirley, author of several biographies on Ronald Reagan, suggested that Haley begin immediately to repair the damage.

“She made a mess last night, and she’s got to clean it up,” he said. “And she’s got to move quickly to do so … Conservatives will forgive her. They made the investment in her when she ran as a tea party candidate, when she ran as an angry tea party candidate. And she’s been effective governor. Words got away from her last night.”

But Haley’s remarks did not come out of the blue; it was not the first time she has taken on Trump in public. She was blunt in September during a speech at the National Press Club in Washington.

“Every time someone criticizes him, he goes and makes a political attack back,” she said during a question-and-answer session of that event. “That’s not who we are as Republicans. That’s not what we do.”

Prior to that, Haley rankled some conservatives by removing the Confederate flag from the statehouse grounds in response to a mass shooting at a black church in Charleston. Critics thought the move unfairly lent credence to the view that the flag is a racist symbol.

The Republicans running for president in 2012 coveted Haley’s support. She backed Establishment favorite Mitt Romney, who lost by South Carolina a wide margin to former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Haley has not made an endorsement in the current race, but it sounds doubtful she will pick Trump. In addition to his lead in national surveys, his current RealClearPolitics polling average in Haley’s home state is 33 percent, 10 points ahead of Sen. Ted Cruz.

On the Fox show, Trump said it was clear from President Obama’s State of the Union address that the president does not like him very much. He said Obama is living in a “fantasy land.” Responding to a BBC report, he criticized the administration’s apology to Iran for violating the country’s territorial waters when a Navy ship experienced mechanical problems. Iran briefly held 10 American sailors.

But Trump focused much of his wrath on Haley.

“She’s weak on illegal immigration,” he said. “And she certainly has no trouble asking me for campaign contributions, because over the years, she’s asked me for a hell of a lot of campaign contributions.”

South Carolina campaign finance reports show that Trump donated $7,000 to Haley during her gubernatorial campaigns.

Craig Shirley on Donald Trump’s opinion piece comparing himself to Ronald Reagan

New York Times bestselling author of “Last Act: The Final Years and Emerging Legacy of Ronald Reagan,” Reagan biographer and presidential historian joins the Hard Line to discuss Donald Trump’s opinion piece in USA Today comparing himself to Ronald Reagan, whether the State of the Union was more of a campaign speech than a traditional SOTU speech, whether it is bad luck to be a State of the Union responder and his overall thoughts on the address.

"There are no easy answers' but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right." – The Gipper