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Tipsheet

Shots Fired: Jeb Slams Trump, Walker Hits Jeb in New Attack Ads


Round One - Team Jeb makes the (strong) case that Donald Trump doesn't even remotely resemble a reliable, principled, constitutional conservative:

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This spot barely scratches the surface of Trump's ideological fluctuations, but it highlights the tycoon's...flexibility on any number of matters. But will this hurt Trump one iota with his conservative fans? Doubtful. They're willing to dismiss Trump's left-wing record on gun control, race-based affirmative action (which he still supports), and even his signature issue of immigration. So what if he's talking about putting his abortion activist sister on the Supreme Court? Policy does not lie at the heart of Trump's appeal. It's his larger-than-life personality and take-no-prisoners attitude that excites people. He plays by his own rules, which exude contempt for the political class -- even as he brags about being rather cozy with members of said political class. Tellingly, the latest Iowa poll shows three non-politicians at the top of the heap on the Republican side: Trump, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina. Of those three, Trump is receiving disproportionately high media coverage; he's flooding the zone and taking advantage. Also, I suspect that sniping from the Bush campaign (even if they're simply returning fire) is unlikely to dissuade Trump supporters -- or too many other conservative voters, for that matter. If it were someone like Ted Cruz shining a spotlight on Trump's long history of supporting liberal candidates and ideas, and 
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not just in the past, that might be another story. But Bush is the flag-carrying candidate of the monied GOP establishment, against which many Republican voters are openly revolting:


The fact that it's Bush who's training his fire on Trump probably empowers Trump all the more, while also indicating that Jeb and company see the billionaire celebrity as a threat. Advantage: Trump.  Round Two -- Scott Walker is out with a new spot assailing the terrible Iran deal and whacking Jeb's opposition to it as weak and nebulous:


It's on. Six months until Iowa.

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