Connect with us

Opinion: NOM’s Brian Brown Is Lying About The Anti-Gay Regnerus Study

Published

on

NOM, the National Organization For Marriage, recently admitted to guilt in 18 counts of California state campaign finance law violations.

For breaking the law eighteen times, NOM in California had to pay a $49,000 fine.

That fine is less that the tens of millions that NOM spends — and/or organizes towards spending — for its allegedly “Christian” mission of blocking gay people from civil rights — at a time when there over 600,000 homeless in the United States.

The $49,000 fine also is less than the $55,000 “planning grant” that NOM-related officials, as part of the Witherspoon Institute, arranged for a study booby trapped to make gay parents look bad.

The study, by Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas at Austin, features a cherry picked control group compared to a test group loaded up with variables.

All of Regnerus’s control group respondents were raised by continuously-married heterosexual couples.

By contrast, Regnerus’s test group respondents, improperly labeled as having “lesbian mothers” and “gay fathers,” had suffered such variables as 1) one parent dying prematurely; 2) a single parent disabled in an accident; 3) a mother who divorced an abusive father to get her children to safety.

Regnerus tells a ridiculous lie to explain why he had no choice but to make the booby trapped comparison.

He says he simply could not find enough young adult children raised by gay couples.

Yet, Michael Rosenfeld’s 2009 study Nontraditional Families and Childhood Progress through School studied 3,502 children of gay couples who had been together for at least five years.

If Regnerus as a professional sociologist truly intended to study children raised by “lesbian mothers” or “gay fathers,” then he had a scientific obligation to develop and to implement a study plan that would actually allow him to interview children raised by lesbian mothers or gay fathers.

Instead, by his dishonest and unscientific means, and in collusion with his anti-gay-rights funders, Regnerus alleges to have proven a correlation between gay parents and bad child outcomes, though his “study” proves no such correlation.

This is one of the chief fallacies of the Regnerus study: Regnerus alleges to have found a correlation between gay parents and bad child outcomes; but in documentable reality, Regnerus found no such thing.

His test group was loaded up with variables, hence, he has no way of knowing which — if any — of the variables correlates to the perceived “bad” child outcomes, for those in his test group who had “bad” outcomes; not all did, by a long shot. And, not all children of heterosexual parents had good outcomes in the Regnerus study, either.

Yet, NOM officials certainly are getting their money’s worth of gay-bashing hate-and-fear mongering out of the Regnerus “study;” in NOM blog comments on the Brown/Savage event, for example, somebody wrote: “I wonder if the poor kid will have [sic] experience the horrific outcome of same sex parenting that Regenerus found in his research.”

National Organization for Marriage officials, moreover, have been heavily involved in lying about the study since before it was even published.

Here is a sampling of NOM’s Brian Brown’s lies about the Regnerus study:

1) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN LIES ABOUT THE REGNERUS STUDY HAVING BEEN PEER REVIEWED

During a debate with Dan Savage, NOM’s Brian Brown alleged that the Regnerus study was published through the normal procedures followed by Social Science Research (SSR), the journal that published the deliberately booby-trapped, anti-gay Regnerus “study.”

However, SSR did not follow its published Peer Review Policy in processing the Regnerus submission for publication.

Ethical and appropriate, professional peer review is a sine qua non of scientific publishing. There are no exceptions. Without ethical and appropriate, professional peer review, a submission to a scientific journal should never be published. Publishing a submission to a scientific journal without putting it through ethical and appropriate professional peer review undermines trust in science, just as violating campaign finance laws 18 times tends to destroy trust in the organization — NOM — engaging in such contemptuous breaking of campaign finance laws.

Now, according to SSR’s Peer Review Policy, peer reviewers “are matched to papers according to their expertise.”

No gay parenting topic experts peer reviewed the Regnerus submission.

You do not ask a brain surgeon to peer review a podiatry study. You do not ask a podiatrist to to peer review a study on brain surgery. The right topic experts for a study on gay parenting, are gay parenting topic experts.

Additionally, SSR’s Peer Review Policy states that typically, it takes 2 to 3 months for a submission to be peer reviewed “but substantially longer review times are not uncommon, especially for papers on esoteric topics where finding qualified referees can itself take months.”

By contrast to that, Regnerus submitted his paper on February 1, 2012 and then SSR editor-in-chief James Wright approved it for publication just 41 days later, without a single topic expert having been involved in the peer review.

To repeat those facts for emphasis: SSR’s Peer Review Policy says that normally, it takes months just to find qualified peer reviewers. Yet, dismayingly, without being peer reviewed by any topic experts, the Regnerus submission was accepted for publication in just 41 days.

Additionally, some of the peer reviewers were paid consultants for the Regnerus study design. What that means, is that the same people paid to booby trap the study design against gay parents also had the power to green-light the study for publication.

That not only violates SSR’s Peer Review Policy, it violates all ethics of scientific publishing.  Vanderbilt University Sociologist Tony N. Brown, Editor of the American Sociological Association’s American Sociological Review, has said: “journal editors should always seek knowledgeable reviewers who do not have any conflict of interest regarding the submitted author or the study’s funder.” (Bolding added).

While it is true that 1) an SSR editorial board member used 2) the same false words NOM’s Brian Brown used about 3) none of SSR’s policies having been violated, that board member also, obviously 4) is lying, as a comparison of SSR’s Peer Review Policy and the facts of the case demonstrate.

The Regnerus study did not receive ethical and appropriate professional peer review.

NOM’s Brian Brown is lying when he says it did.

Science advances when experiments and studies are replicated and produce the same results. The Regnerus study as published would never survive ethical and appropriate professional peer review; thus, the Regnerus study as published can not possibly be replicated, produce the same results, and be approved as valid by ethical and appropriate professional peer reviewers.

After all, the study features a cherry picked control group compared to a test group loaded up with variables.

Cherry picking a control group is dishonest, a form of lying.

The necessity for eliminating lurking variables — to say nothing of glaring variables —  is taught in every Sociology 101 course and every Statistics 101 course.

2) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN LIES ABOUT HOW MANY PEOPLE REGNERUS INTERVIEWED

In a June 15, 2012 NOM blog post with the comically dubious title of The Big Mo for Marriage, NOM’s Brian Brown lied by saying “The researchers interviewed more than 15,000 people.” (Bolding added).

As a glance at Regnerus’s Codebook shows, Regnerus screened 15,058 people, but only actually interviewed a total of  2,988 survey participants.

In a sociological study, screening consists of asking people a few questions to see whether they qualify for you to interview them. Interviewing them consists of having them answer all the questions in your full study survey.

Screening and interviewing are two completely different sociological activities.

Brown’s misrepresentation of how many people Regnerus interviewed fits a pattern of Witherspoon/NOM/Regnerus lies that seek to impress the public by representing Regnerus’s study as having been larger than it in fact was.

Here is why this is so important a matter.

Regnerus alleges that his study results are statistically accurate for the entire US population. That is to say, were Regnerus telling the truth, whatever his findings show as percent findings for any group, would consistently be the percent findings for that group throughout the country.

However, Regnerus only surveyed a total of 248 children of “gay” parents. At that, his labeling of study subjects’ parents as “lesbian mothers” and “gay fathers” was unscientific and unethical.

Leaving aside Regnerus’s labeling ethics, what about his numbers? Can one produce a statistically reliable study with only 248 children of gay parents?

Dr. Steven Nock, an expert in large random sampling survey studies, was asked by the Canadian Attorney General to submit an affidavit in Halpern v. Canada.

According to Dr. Nock’s affidavit, for a gay parenting study to be statistically valid, a minimum of 800 gay parents would have to be included in the study. Nock estimates that to find 800 gay parents to interview, a researcher would have to screen at least 40,000 people. And, Nock said that screening 40,000 people is “not a particularly large screening task.”

Yet, there is the NOM shill Regnerus, alleging that he carried out an unprecedentedly enormous study, and his NOM co-conspirator Brian Brown lying about how many people the Regnerus study interviewed.

To clarify — NOM’s Brian Brown is boasting that Regnerus “interviewed” 15,000 people yet could not find people actually raised by gay parents. NOM’s Brian Brown talks about the 15,000 Regnerus screened, as though Regnerus had carried out some unimaginably huge task. Yet the expert Dr. Steven Nock says that in order to find enough gay parents for a study, one would have to screen at least 40,000 people. Regnerus screened 25,000 people too few, to meet Dr. Nock’s estimated minimum of people who had to be screened, for enough gay parents to be represented in a valid gay parenting study based on a large random sampling.

Now, by way of comparison, let’s look at how many people were interviewed for actual large studies.

In 2011, the Pew Research Center conducted a large national random sample survey of Muslims living in the United States. Pew interviewed — not screened — interviewed — 55,000 people, of which 1,050 were Muslims in the United States.

The comparison:

Pew interviewed:
55,000 people, of which 1,050 were the study’s test group, Muslims living in the US.

By contrast, Regnerus interviewed:
only 2,988 people, of which 248 were the study’s test group, children of “same-sex” parents.

Another comparison with an actual large study:

In 2005, a large random sample survey was done in India on the prevalence of major neurological disorders in Kolkata.

The comparison:

Indian researchers interviewed:                       52,377 people
Regnerus interviewed:                                             2,988 people

Another comparison with an actual large study:

A study on tobacco smokers in Brazil interviewed — not screened — interviewed 8589 people.

The comparison:

Brazilian researchers interviewed: 8589 people.
Regnerus interviewed:                          2,988 people.

Whereas Regnerus only interviewed 2,988 people, NOM’s Brian Brown lies by saying that Regnerus interviewed “over 15,000 people.”

These things matter. If Regnerus needed more money from his NOM-linked funders in order to be able to interview an adequate number of children of actual same-sex parents, then Regnerus should have insisted on more money from his NOM-linked funders.

Whereas his NOM-linked funders are said to have given Regnerus $785,000 for his booby-trapped study, they are spending  — and/or involved in the arrangements for spending — tens upon tens of millions attacking gay people, their families and their rights in the 2012 elections.

It is not that Regnerus’s NOM-linked funders could not have come up with enough money for a study that would interview adequate numbers of children raised by same-sex couples.

It is, rather, that NOM officials wanted an anti-gay demonizing weapon for the 2012 election season.

The matter of the number of persons Regnerus interviewed is related to another of Brian Brown’s lies about the Regnerus study, namely:

3) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN LIES ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIP OF THE REGNERUS STUDY TO OTHER GAY PARENTING STUDIES

The Regnerus study was twinned in publication in Social Science Research to another study by the professional gay-basher Loren Marks. Marks’s bachelor’s and master’s degrees were earned from Brigham Young University, a school with an “honor code” that forbids school community members from “promoting” homosexual relations as being morally acceptable.

Previously, when NOM attempted to use Marks as an “expert witness” in a Proposition 8 case, Marks’s “expert” testimony was barred from the courtroom after Marks was questioned, and admitted that he had not read studies from which he quoted, and that he did not know anything about gay-led families.

The Marks paper — twinned in publication to the Regnerus paper — argues that all prior studies on same-sex parents’ child outcomes were based on small samplings that are not statistically generalizable to the whole population.

Conspicuously, the Marks paper was twinned in publication with the Regnerus paper, to bolster the fraudulent propaganda claims that the Regnerus study actually consists of a large enough sampling to be statistically generalizable to the whole population.

To put the argument in its most simple terms, Marks says “Small studies bad, big studies good.” In his Big Mo post, Brian Brown exploits the Marks study to beat the “Small studies bad, big studies good” horse, in an attempt to delude the public into believing that the Regnerus study was large enough to give meaningful results about children raised by gay parents.

But the Regnerus study was not large enough to give meaningful results about children raised by gay parents.

When NOM’s Brian Brown trots out the Marks paper to propagandize about the Regnerus study being large enough, when the Regnerus study was not large enough, NOM’s Brian Brown is lying about the scientific significance of the number of study subjects Regnerus interviewed.

Remember: Regnerus only interviewed 2,988 total people. The study of Brazilian smokers interviewed 8,589 people. The study of the prevalence of neurological disorders in India interviewed 52,377 people. The Pew study of Muslims living in the US interviewed 55,000 people.

To carry out a valid study of gay parents’ child outcomes, Regnerus needed to screen and then interview a lot more people than he did.

All of NOM’s Brian Brown’s statements that the Regnerus study was large enough are lies.

4) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN LIES ABOUT WHETHER REGNERUS’S STUDY SUBJECTS LIVED WITH “LESBIAN MOTHERS”

In his “Big Mo” NOM blog post, Brian Brown says this:

“91 percent lived with their mothers while she had this” same-sex “romantic relationship. But most of these relationships turned out to be fleeting.”

In truth, the Regnerus study methodology did not allow Regnerus to determine whether his study respondents’ parents ever actually had a “same sex romantic relationship.”

Eight major professional associations including the American Medical Association filed a Golinski-DOMA brief.

Writing in that brief, the AMA noted that Regnerus’s “data does not show whether the perceived” same-sex “romantic relationship ever in fact occurred.”

When a group of over 200 Ph.D.s and M.D.s sent a letter to Social Science Research, complaining about the Regnerus study’s lack of intellectual integrity, they said “We have substantial concerns about the merits of this paper and question whether it actually uses methods and instruments that answer the research questions posed in the paper.”

Who are you going to believe on science? Eight major professional associations including the AMA, and over 200 Ph.D.s and M.D.s, or NOM’s lying anti-gay president Brian Brown, whose organization’s leaders arranged for the funding of the Regnerus study and are promoting it heavily in anti-gay-rights political contexts?

Given that Regnerus’s “data does not show whether the perceived romantic relationship ever in fact occurred,” Brian Brown is lying when he says that 91 percent of Regnerus’s study respondents “lived with their mothers while she had this” same-sex “romantic relationship.”

In promoting the Regnerus study in anti-gay-rights political contexts, Regnerus and NOM rely heavily on public ignorance about sociology. One false notion they especially push, is that gosh darn it, it’s just too difficult to ask meaningful questions towards determining the actual sexual orientation of a study subject’s parent. Regnerus could not possibly have done a more scientific job determining his respondents’ parents’ sexual orientation, because nobody knows how to do that! The whole field of studying gay parents is in too early a stage!

Yet, in 2009, the Williams Institute published its study titled Best Practices for Asking Questions about Sexual Orientation on Surveys. Regnerus worked as though in ignorance of that document.

5) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN LIES ABOUT HAVING RESPECT FOR SCIENCE

After saying that he is not a social scientist, Brian Brown says “I respect the scientific enterprise enough to wish for open, robust scientific debate.”

Notice what Brown is doing with this particular lie; he is creating a false impression that there are scientific grounds for debating whether a parent’s sexual orientation,  heterosexual or homosexual, per se, correlates to or causes a good or bad child outcome.

There currently is no scientific debate about whether a parent’s sexual orientation,  heterosexual or homosexual, per se, correlates to or causes a good or bad child outcome.

All available scientific evidence shows that nothing about a parent’s sexual orientation, per se, impacts child outcomes.

That means, it can be legitimate to suggest that more studies might be done to examine whether a parent’s sexual orientation,  heterosexual or homosexual, per se, correlates to or causes a good or bad child outcome.

But, there is no scientific basis for debating whether a parent’s sexual orientation,  heterosexual or homosexual, per se, correlates to or causes a good or bad child outcome. And that is because, there is no scientific evidence that a parent’s sexual orientation, per se, correlates to or causes a child outcome good or bad.

Genuine scientific debate does not — and could not possibly — occur as a result of NOM/Witherspoon’s Robert George getting a $55,000 “planning grant” for Mark Regnerus, with Mark Regnerus then presenting a booby trapped study design to Robert George in order to get green-lighted for $785,000 of study funding. Distortions of the scientific record never are involved in legitimate, actual scientific debate over scientific interpretation of study findings.

Even NOM’s Brian Brown admits there is no scientific basis for saying that a parent’s sexual orientation correlates to or causes a child outcome good or bad. Look what Brown said in his Big Mo post:

“Does this new study prove gay parents harm their children? No.  . . . We still can’t say that from scientific evidence because we don’t have good data.”

Yet immediately, Brown goes on to say that the Marks and Regnerus studies “show us the claim that science has disproven and ruled out of court the idea that children need a mom and dad is just bogus.”

Much like Maggie Gallagher, NOM’s Brian Brown lies through his teeth while talking out both sides of his gay-bashing bigot mouth. First he admits that the Regnerus study did not prove that gay parents harm children, then he says that all children “need” heterosexual parents. He has no explanation for why an adopted child, for example, would “need” abusive heterosexual parents but not loving gay parents.

And why are so many children up for adoption? In many cases, children are up for adoption because their heterosexual parents neglected, abused or abandoned them.

If NOM’s Brian Brown had respect for science, he would not base any of his gay-bashing newsletters on “findings” from a booby trapped study that had loaded up its test group with variables.

To specify what is meant: if a person was raised by a single lesbian mother, who also was paralyzed from the waist down and in a wheelchair, and who was living in poverty, that mother’s child’s “bad” outcomes could as well correlate to the mother’s poverty, or to her being a single disabled mother, as to her being lesbian. When a test group is loaded up with variables, there simply is no way of knowing which of the variables might correlate to — or have caused — the “bad” outcomes.

6) NOM’s BRIAN BROWN IS LYING WHEN HE SAYS HE IS CONCERNED WITH CHILD WELFARE

NOM is interested in political gay-bashing and restricting gay people’s rights, and not in the least in child welfare.

For one example that that is so: most children in the foster care system are there because irresponsible heterosexual parents neglected, abused or abandoned them.

And, many children have been rescued from the foster care system by gay adoptive parents who have given them safe and loving families and homes.

Yet, NOM’s lying anti-gay bigots want those gay-headed families stigmatized and legally disadvantaged — no matter the harm that NOM”s gay-bashing bigotry inflicts on the children the gay parents are raising.

Here is a second example of NOM not giving a damn about child welfare. A 2-year-old boy lost his heterosexual parents to an accident. His gay uncle and the uncle’s male spouse were at the hospital the day the baby was born, and love him very much. His parents had named the married gay uncles as the boy’s guardians, should anything happen to them. Now, that boy is being raised by his loving uncles, instead of having to be placed in an orphanage or in the foster care system.

Who but a malicious anti-gay bigot would say that that boy and his family should be stigmatized and legally disadvantaged?

To read the gay-bashing NOM pledge signed by Mitt Romney that would stigmatize and legally disadvantage that family, go here.

And remember: The National Organization for Marriage recently admitted to guilt in 18 counts of California state campaign finance law violations.

For breaking the law eighteen times, NOM in California had to pay a $49,000 fine.

That NOM authorities have to commission a booby trapped “study” and then promote the booby-trapped study with lie after lie after lie — in their attempts to perpetuate the sexual orientation apartheid system — shows that NOM is losing the argument. Bigots have used distortions of the scientific record as weapons against minorities in the American past, yet all such past American minority victims wound up gaining their civil rights on a national level.

The lying, malicious, campaign-finance-law-breaking anti-gay bigots of NOM will not prevent LGBTers from achieving equality.

New York City-based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT-interest by-line has appeared on Advocate.com, PoliticusUSA.com, The New York Blade, Queerty.com, Girlfriends and in numerous additional venues. Among his other interests are the arts, boating and yachting, wine and food, travel, poker and dogs. His “Mr. David Cooper’s Happy Suicide” is about a New York City advertising executive assigned to a condom account.

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

News

Biden Channels Lincoln in Address on Trump Assassination Attempt: ‘We Are Not Enemies’

Published

on

Echoing President Abraham Lincoln‘s first inaugural address, President Joe Biden in a rare primetime Oval Office address Sunday night told Americans “we are not enemies,” as he urged the nation to tone down political rhetoric in the wake of the assassination attempt of presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump by a 20-year old registered Republican at an outdoor Trump rally in Pennsylvania one day earlier.

It was the third time in 24-hours President Biden spoke to Americans via a televised address about the shooting in which Trump’s ear was nicked, some reports say from shards of glass from his teleprompter, while the ex-president claimed it was from a bullet. The eight bullets from the gunman’s legally-purchased AR-15 rifle killed a 50-year old former volunteer fire chief who shielded his daughters with his body, and wounded two others.

“While we may disagree, we are not enemies. We’re neighbors, we’re friends, coworkers, citizens. And most importantly, we are fellow Americans. We must stand together,” President Biden reminded the nation, as he announced “the need to lower the temperature in our politics.”

Biden said the “shooting calls on all of us to take a step back.” Earlier, on Sunday afternoon in his nationally-televised remarks the President said, “We must unite as one nation. We must unite as one nation to demonstrate who we are.”

READ MORE: ‘Supposed to Be Hard’: Political Experts Explain Their Thinking on Biden and the Election

In denouncing political violence, President Biden cited some of the most critical recent examples in America.

“We can not, we must not, go down this road in America. We’ve traveled it before throughout our history,” the President warned. “Violence has never been the answer, whether it was with members of congress of both parties being targeted and shot, or a violent mob attacking the capitol on January 6th, or the brutal attack on the spouse of the former Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, or information or intimidation on election officials, or the kidnapping plot against the sitting governor, or the attempted assassination on Donald Trump, there’s no place in America for this kind of violence, for any violence, ever. Period. No exceptions. We cannot allow this violence to be normalized,” Biden said resolutely.

“In America, we resolve our differences at the ballot box, that’s how we do it, at the ballot box, not with bullets,” the President also declared, as some on the right, including far-right wing websites, quickly mocked and attacked him for his speech impediment, claiming he had said, “battle box.”

Pointing to Biden’s “desire to protect democracy,” NBC News White House correspondent Peter Alexander Sunday night reminded that the deadly 2017 neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville was “really the motivating factor” for his decision to run for President in 2020.

Indeed, Biden has a strong record of fighting against political violence and hate. On Sunday he declared that in America, “hate must have no safe harbor,” which echoed his 2023 State of the Union Address in which he said: “There’s no place for political violence in America,” and, “We must give hate and extremism in any form no safe harbor.”

“Democracy must not be a partisan issue, it’s an American issue. Every generation of Americans has faced a moment where they have been called to protect our democracy Defend it, stand up for it. And this is our moment,” Biden had also said.

Former South Carolina Democratic Congressman Bakari Sellers judged Biden’s six-minute Sunday evening speech to be “pitch perfect. Great sharp message, tone, and leadership.”

READ MORE: Critics: Where’s Trump’s Hour-Long Press Conference With Policy Questions from Reporters?

Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin called Biden’s remarks “eloquent and sobering.”

“Biden speech was eloquent and sobering. It is the time for experienced, reassuring and mature leadership. We need to be called to follow the better angels of our nature not the darkest impulses. There is nothing more important.”

“Just watched Joe Biden’s speech. He just won the election,” announced SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah.

“President Biden used the pulpit well tonight. He did what a president should do: seek to calm the country, seek to calm each of us,” declared award-winning journalist Maria Shriver.

This is an excellent speech,” rhetoric scholar and professor of communications Jennifer Mercieca wrote. “Biden is good at what scholars call the ‘priestly role of the president,’ which is when the president is called upon to speak to a nation in crisis and remind us of our values and explain why our American values will see us through hard times.”

Even Fox News’ chief political analyst Brit Hume praised President Biden’s speech Sunday night declaring his “message was just right,” as Mediate reported.

Watch clips from the President’s remarks and his full address above or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Betrayal’: Trump Hosts ‘Russian Puppet’ Viktor Orbán as Biden Hosts NATO Leaders

Continue Reading

News

‘Supposed to Be Hard’: Political Experts Explain Their Thinking on Biden and the Election

Published

on

Two weeks after the political class’s response to President Joe Biden’s poor debate performance threw the 2024 election into chaos, four political experts share their thinking about where the race actually stands and what Biden’s supporters should do.

“He can’t win right!? They point to the polling right?” wrote political strategist and pollster Cornell Belcher, a frequent NBC News/MSNBC political analyst, linking to a report about the latest polls which show President Biden ahead of Donald Trump. “Well this is the 2nd poll (credible poll) in 2 days showing the Pres race in statistical deadlock two weeks after debate! Using polls to push Biden out feels like red wave 2020 bs all over again.”

Belcher was commenting on the latest Marist College poll produced for NPR/PBS NewsHour. It found Biden beating Trump 50-48 in a one-to-one matchup. When factoring in the four third-party/independent candidates including RFK Jr., Trump came out ahead of Biden, 43-42.

FiveThirtyEight’s regularly updated polling aggregator currently shows Trump up over Biden by 1.9 points, a drop from Thursday where he was more than two points over Biden. FiveThirtyEight also currently shows; “Biden wins 50 times out of 100 in our simulations of the 2024 presidential election. Trump wins 49 times out of 100.”

READ MORE: Critics: Where’s Trump’s Hour-Long Press Conference With Policy Questions from Reporters?

Former Republican and former GOP communications director Tara Setmayer, a resident scholar at Harvard’s Institute of Politics, says the Democratic “freak out needs to stop.”

“Enough.”

Pointing to that same Marist poll, she focuses on a different question.

“This poll also shows character matters more than age. That’s to Biden’s advantage.”

NPR’s headline on its article detailing the poll reads: “After Biden’s debate performance, the presidential race is unchanged.”

“Biden actually gained a point since last month’s survey, which was taken before the debate,” NPR reports, adding: “the survey also found that by a 2-to-1 margin, 68% to 32%, people said it’s more concerning to have a president who doesn’t tell the truth than one who might be too old to serve.”

READ MORE: ‘No Change’: Biden Debate Performance Has Had ‘Almost No Impact’ on 2024 Race Report Finds

To Setmayer’s point, NPR also says, “A majority said Biden has the character to be president (52%), while a majority also said Trump does not (56%).”

Mike Madrid, the Latino GOP political consultant and Lincoln Project co-founder, offered advice to Biden supporters on how to think about Democrats and pundits pushing for the President to drop out of the race, and how to deal with the day-to-day emotional toll.

“Getting lots of questions on how to lower the anxiety level people are feeling. Best thing you can do is unfollow the people attacking Biden gratuitously. Don’t engage them. Unfollow them. It’s not an honest discussion. It’s a frenzy that’s doing real damage.”

“You will not get an explanation from the political arsonists fueling this panic,” he added. “Stop looking for one. Unfollow them. Drop your subscription. Quit listening. That’s the best thing you can do in the pro-democracy fight right now. Their gaslighting is now a suppression tactic.”

To someone who said they are “scared,” and the situation is “confusing, maddening and sad,” Madrid advised: “Nothing has changed. Stop watching TV and get off Twitter. Take the weekend off. Please.”

The Lincoln Project’s Stuart Stevens, a political strategist for decades and author of “The Conspiracy To End America,” writes: “I worked in campaigns for 30 years. I am hardwired to respond one way when your guy is in trouble: fight harder. Don’t start looking for exit ramps or magic bullets. Play the next play. Do your job. Ignore the scoreboard. It’s supposed to be hard.”

READ MORE: ‘Betrayal’: Trump Hosts ‘Russian Puppet’ Viktor Orbán as Biden Hosts NATO Leaders

Continue Reading

News

RFK Jr. Apology Over Sexual Assault Allegation ‘Disingenuous’ – Unsure if More to Come

Published

on

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the independent candidate running for president, has apologized to the woman who accused him of sexual assault, and separately told reporters he does not know if there are more potential accusers.

The 70-year old anti-vaxxer and conspiracy theorist who has said a worm ate a portion of his brain, has not denied allegations of sexual misconduct. A recent Vanity Fair profile reports that in 1998, Eliza Cooney, 23-years old at the time and working as a part-time baby sitter for RFK Jr. and his wife’s children, felt his “hand moving up and down her leg under the table” during “a meeting in the family kitchen.”

There are other allegations in the Vanity Fair profile that include Kennedy being shirtless in Cooney’s bedroom and asking her to rub lotion on his back, which she said was “totally inappropriate.”

And this: “A few months later, Cooney says, she was rifling through the kitchen pantry for lunch after a yoga class, still in her sports bra and leggings, when Kennedy came up behind her, blocked her inside the room, and began groping her, putting his hands on her hips and sliding them up along her rib cage and breasts. ‘My back was to the door of the pantry, and he came up behind me,’ she says, describing the alleged sexual assault. ‘I was frozen. Shocked.’ ”

RELATED: ‘What in the F’: RFK Jr. in Photo With Alleged ‘Barbecued’ Dog Carcass Disgusts Critics

The Washington Post Friday morning reported RFK Jr. “privately apologized to a woman who accused him of sexual assault, saying he does not remember the alleged incident and that any harm he caused was ‘inadvertent.’ ”

“’I have no memory of this incident but I apologize sincerely for anything I ever did that made you feel uncomfortable or anything I did or said that offended you or hurt your feelings,’ Kennedy wrote in a text message to Cooney sent at 12:33 a.m. on July 4, two days after her accusations became public. ‘I never intended you any harm. If I hurt you, it was inadvertent. I feel badly for doing so.’ ”

Cooney told The Post that Kennedy’s texted message was “disingenuous and arrogant.”

“I’m not sure how somebody has a true apology for something that they don’t admit to recalling. I did not get a sense of remorse.”

READ MORE: Critics: Where’s Trump’s Hour-Long Press Conference With Policy Questions from Reporters?

Also on Friday, hidden in the middle of a Boston Globe soft profile of the presidential candidate whose support has reportedly now hit ten percent – possibly enough to change the outcome of the election – is Kennedy’s apparent acknowledgment there could be more allegations of sexual misconduct.

“Asked if other women might come forward with similar allegations he said, ‘I don’t know. We’ll see what happens.’ ”

The Globe notes Kennedy “is currently on the ballot in nine states, and submitted enough signatures to eventually get on the ballot in 15 states. There are five other states where the campaign claims to have enough signatures but hasn’t turned in them in yet, in some cases because the window to do so hasn’t opened.”

FiveThirtyEight reports there is a 58% chance the election “is decided by a smaller margin than the vote share for third-party candidates,” meaning Kennedy, who has the largest portion of third party votes, may have the potential to change the election outcome.

In a parenthetical addition, Vanity Fair updated its report, writing: “After this story was published, Kennedy told the Breaking Points podcast, in response to Cooney’s allegations, that he is ‘not a church boy… I have so many skeletons in my closet.’ When pressed to respond directly to her claims, he told the anchor, ‘I’m not going to comment on it.’ ”

READ MORE: ‘Betrayal’: Trump Hosts ‘Russian Puppet’ Viktor Orbán as Biden Hosts NATO Leaders

 

 

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.