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GOP Consultant: ‘Political Malpractice’ for Trump Primary Opponents Not to Have Dug Dirt

GOP Consultant: ‘Political Malpractice’ for Trump Primary Opponents Not to Have Dug Dirt

Would Trump Have Lost Nomination if Current Stories Had Emerged During GOP Primaries?

Was it a mistake for Donald Trump’s opponents in the Republican primary not to have done oppo research on Trump and uncovered the stories about his personal behavior that have recently emerged?

On today’s With All Due Respect, Mark Halperin posed the question to GOP consultant Susan Del Percio [who had earlier indicated she wasn’t voting for Trump or Hillary]. Del Percio said that, indeed, it was “political malpractice” for Trump’s primary opponents not to have done such digging on him. She surmised that the candidates didn’t want to spend the money, and were worried that in retaliation Trump would have “chop[ped] them off at the knees.” Del Percio suggested that the smarter way to go would have been for an anti-Trump super PAC to have done the research.

Questions for LI readers: if these sort of stories had emerged during the primaries, would they have deprived Trump of the nomination? And if one of the other primary candidates had won the nomination instead of Trump, where would the race be today?

MARK HALPERIN: Susan, I’m fascinated by this question for history: is it possible that all of the 15 other Republicans who ran for president committed malpractice by not ferreting this stuff out, and if they had, would it have stopped Donald Trump from being the nominee?

SUSAN DEL PERCIO: I think at the end of the day, some of them just did not want to spend the money on the opposition research that you needed to do. And it was political malpractice not going after him, looking at it today. Because at the time, none of the Republicans wanted to go after Trump directly because they knew he would just take them down and chop them off at the knees. That being said, there certainly are a lot of donors who played it wrong, saying, well, Donald Trump’s going to back out. They could have gotten together and done a super PAC just to take him down, which would have been historically I think the right way to go.


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Republicans are Pro-Choice? Libertarians, yes.

It’s a baby trial. Presumed guilty. Off with his head.

So the one harassment allegation happened in 1985? Is that about when Hillary was involved in the Castle Grande scandal or the larger Whitewater scandal? It’s so hard to keep them all straight. There’s been so many.

Interesting how Trump’s allegations explode out, then slowly shrink as more facts become known, while Hillary’s just keep growing, and growing…

Getting the dirt out earlier might have been a good idea, but I think there are enough pissed off supporters that they just don’t care. Watching the leftist all of a sudden get a sense of moral outrage is hilarious. The Democrats have a very high tolerance for moral turpitude.

Questions for LI readers: if these sort of stories had emerged during the primaries, would they have deprived Trump of the nomination?

Do you mean the current unproven stories, or some other currently undisclosed, but ‘true’, stories?

And if one of the other primary candidates had won the nomination instead of Trump, where would the race be today?

Same place, just a different Republican Presidential candidate as the target of the drive-by media smear campaign.

    They are making two assumptions: one, that the Republicans didn’t try, and two, that the stories were actually there instead of “appearing” when needed. How many hate crime hoaxes, false rape charges, etc. have we seen Democrat constituencies perpetrate in just the last 4 years?

I have a feeling that the voters have about reached scandal saturation. There are so many charges and allegations flying around that the voters are going to tune it all out. If they do that, they may decide that saints don’t run for office and the scandals don’t matter or that voting is useless and stay home. It could be a low turnout with few independents voting (since they don’t have any party loyalty to get them to the polls).
From talking to people, I do know that the scandals don’t matter to the true believers on either side (at least the scandals about their candidate don’t matter). Rational discussion is history, this is bare knuckles brawling – to the death.

I took a nap this evening so maybe I missed something. Are there now police reports? Did a flight attendant show up to verify a complaint?

What dirt is this that somebody else should have dug up? Is Del Percio referring to the secret recording between Bush and Trump? When exactly did the Bush family dig this up? Was it too late to use in the primaries?

Maybe Del Percio, a Republican consultant, is still on the job.

The person with the first and greatest responsibilty for vetting is the candidate himself. When thinking of running, you hire someone good to vet you, so you know what your opponent’s campaign will likely learn. Then you handle any problems early. A candidate aware he has too many ‘issues’ likely to be found out needs to be responsible and decide not to run.

    Mark Finkelstein in reply to Henry Hawkins. | October 13, 2016 at 10:57 pm

    Interesting points. It was mentioned on the show that Trump nixed the idea of any vetting being done on him by his own campaign.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to Mark Finkelstein. | October 14, 2016 at 9:33 am

      Who knows if any of the allegations against Trump are true, but, for the sake of argument, let’s say much of it was true. As soon as Trump won the GOP nom, he should have dropped into every or every other speech that folks ought to watch out for false accusations, you know they’re coming, people. They’re false, alright? – tying it to biased media and ‘crooked’ Hillary. Do that all summer, and when October comes, you’ve hopefully enured the public to whatever comes out, with a great many of them assuming they’re untrue before they even come out.

Would Trump Have Lost Nomination if Current Stories Had Emerged During GOP Primaries?

This question implies that you assume that these stories are true.

If they’re not true, then there was no dirt to be found. At least not this dirt.

If they had been manufactured earlier (by either party), there would have been time to investigate them and look for corroborating evidence.

Without such evidence, only a child or a fool would believe something just because the party slime machines spoon-feed it to him.

In any event, the answer is no.

Recall that the primaries were dominated by some Big Questions; and only one candidate in either party was willing to even mention some of the biggest. And that is why Trump eventually triumphed over the candidates who tried to ignore the Big Questions. Nothing has changed since; voters who share the belief that these questions concern crises which pose dire threats to the United States have only one choice, no matter how much they may grouse about it.

This stuff the Dems are slinging is not about Big Questions, it’s about trivia. We’re talking about an officeholder whose signature on a piece of paper can bankrupt entire industries, lay waste to vast tracts of the American landscape, prop up or defeat dictators, defend or destroy America’s founding principles … and somebody’s getting their panties in a wad over … a whole mess of nothing much.

Voters concerned with the Big Questions are still concerned with them. Trivial fluff won’t divert them. This has nothing to do with “true believers”; it has everything to do with adult mental processes.

During the primaries Trump benefited from the divided field and a cult following. He got the lowest percentage of primary votes in recent history, and yet he won.
You need to look no further than LI comments to see that his following would defend him on all accusations. It is true now, it was true then. During the primaries Trump himself famously said that he can go out on the 5th Ave and shoot people and he wouldn’t lose any followers.

    “During the primaries Trump benefited from the divided field and a cult following. He got the lowest percentage of primary votes in recent history, and yet he won.”

    Perhaps your second statement is because of the first.

    He got a record number of primary votes, in spite of the large number of people running.

    You leave a lot out, Hillary voter.

At this point, what difference does it make?

As for what happened 30 years ago, I can’t recall.

DINORightMarie | October 13, 2016 at 11:34 pm

I clearly remember Romney getting attacked by Newt for REAL things that happened…….and all he got was DESTROYED by the GOP and party hacks.

The 11th Commandment.

(Even though the other guys – including the media – play by Alinsky’s Rules…..)

I’m almost more crushed that Rush and others are gone….lost in this morass of muck and mire…. Took down Rush and Hannity, etc. by propping up the con-man celebrity…..

And the premise of the question…
Yeah, let us blame someone else. The root causes: the media is mean, the Democrats are ruthless, Republican contenders failed to vet, NeverTrumpers don’t fall in line, no jobs in the rust belt, illegals ignored, the Versailles Treaty.
Donald Trump and his supporters are directly responsible for this failure.

You mean the “stories” that do not fit with known facts, are physically impossible, and never surfaced before, despite Trump being well-known and wealthy?

Oh my my my.

Gee I wonder why Jessica Leeds claims to have been assaulted by Trump.

thalesofmiletus | October 14, 2016 at 1:13 am

“Would Trump Have Lost Nomination if Current Stories Had Emerged During GOP Primaries?”

Nothing in these stories would have turned those losers into winners, so no.


Massively Narcissistic Oligarch Bitten In Fat Ass By Hubris


Obscure political consultant displays breathtaking hindsight

I find this all amazing. The shenanigans of JFK and LBJ were just guys being guys and the death of Mary Jo by Ted Kennedy were nothing to be concerned about. Just like we have leaked emails showing all sorts of horrible things going on behind the scenes with the Democrats and we are told they are all nothing. They do not even try to mount a real defense and yet they are still nothing.
Now we have unsubstantiated reports about Trump’s behavior from eons ago and we are expected to believe them. It does not matter that these came out of no where and all appeared at the same time after sitting about for decades (with one accuser even having repeatedly asked Trump for a job in the intervening period), we are still supposed to believe them.
This would all be a horrible joke adding proof as to how dishonest the Clinton Democrats are and how having them in office is something we do not want to ever consider if it were not for the fact that so many are readily believing these apparently manufactured stories.

It shows their desperation Cleetus. The war on Freedom is most definitely out in the open and the charge is being led squarely by the Democrats and their enabling, feeble media.


I’m waiting for the allegations of Trump foreclosing on widows & orphans ….

Roughly 20 years ago an author of my acquaintance wrote:
“I will no longer debate a liberal because I feel they are beneath contempt. Just communicating with one contaminates a person.”
— And my own corollary: “Until proven otherwise, all liberals are duplicitous, treasonous, hypocritical vermin over-qualified for extermination.”

Henry Hawkins | October 14, 2016 at 9:38 am

Every minute spent discussing the Trump dumps plays directly into the Clinton campaign’s hands. Keeping Trump and his supporters constantly on defense while distracting from Clinton scandals is the purpose. Unfortunately, the next Trump dump is resting on the media shelf waiting for the media buzz from the last one to die down. Like baseball’s on-deck circle.

The end result of all this will be even more people dialling in to watch the last debate. If the previous one was anything to go by this could be the medias worst nightmare as Trump will be able to talk directly to the American public and can unload, once again, on HRC.

Additionally, if the moderator is as bad as the previous ones then this will only reinforce the general belief that the media cannot be trusted.

End result…a yuge landslide for Trump 🙂

As far as the initial question goes, if the primaries were all held on the same day then the revelations on the eve of voting might have had an effect. But, with the primaries spread out as they are, there would be time for argument, counter-argument, counter-counter-argument, etc thereby having a see-saw effect.

This article makes some unproven assumptions as well as ignoring some basic facts.

The assumption here is that the other Republican Presidential candidates did NOT have this information. This is certainly possible, but highly unlikely. What is more likely is that the Uniparty decided to stick with their strategy to split the primary vote to allow their chosen candidate(s) to get the nomination at the convention. Cruz attempted to mount a personal attack against Trump, and his family members, and was slapped down when Trump counter punched. And few, if any, political candidates, with any political history, can afford to have their dirty laundry aired during a campaign.

The basic facts were, and still are, that none of these “allegations” would have affected the positions of those supporting Trump’s candidacy. They are not voting FOR the man, but against the Establishment. Once you realize this, then the lack of traction these supposed revelations about Trump generate is easily understandable.

The strategy of the Trump campaign has always been to directly address any and all personal attacks against him, or his family, vigorously. This includes a decisive counter attack against the person responsible for, or who benefited from, the attack.And, as most politicians live in glass houses, they can not afford to get into a rock throwing contest. Their profession is being a “career” elected politician.

No, trump would not have lost the Republican nomination if the Billy Bush tape had come out.

Jeb Bush was running on a pro-amnesty platform, and Marco Rubio was the leader of the gang of 8. Neither could ever gain traction. Ted Cruz has just limited appeal due to his affect and associations with Clinton supporting Glenn Beck.

The only way to beat Trump was to run somebody like Mike Pence with Mike Pence’s current adoption of Trump’s issues (basically Trumps issues without Trump’s bombast).

As for the current Billy Bush tape, who cares? So he thinks he’s a macho man behind closed doors. That’s not a new thing for Americans to elect in a president. At least he has some testosterone.

Henry Hawkins | October 14, 2016 at 3:21 pm

The GOP has historically followed a general rule that you don’t trash fellow GOP primary opponents but so bad, so as not to damage the eventual nominee too badly for the general election.

As we’ve just seen with the Clinton campaign’s treatment of Bernie Sanders, they do not have such rules.

“GOP consultant?” Haven’t we established that is synonymous for “talentless piece of garbage?”