By Ryan Grim, Nick Baumann and Matt Fuller. Billionaires, tech CEOs and top members of the Republican establishment flew to a private island resort off the coast of Georgia this weekend for the American Enterprise Institute’s annual World Forum, according to sources familiar with the secretive gathering.
The main topic at the closed-to-the-press confab? How to stop Republican front-runner Donald Trump.
Apple CEO Tim Cook, Google co-founder Larry Page, Napster creator and Facebook investor Sean Parker, and Tesla Motors and SpaceX honcho Elon Musk all attended. So did Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), political guru Karl Rove, House Speaker Paul Ryan, GOP Sens. Tom Cotton (Ark.), Cory Gardner (Colo.), Tim Scott (S.C.), Rob Portman (Ohio) and Ben Sasse (Neb.), who recently made news by saying he “cannot support Donald Trump.”
Along with Ryan, the House was represented by Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton (Mich.), Rep. Kevin Brady (Texas) and almost-Speaker Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), sources said, along with leadership figure Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.), Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.), Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (Texas) and Diane Black (Tenn.). (Read more from “50+ Jets Fly the World’s Elite to Secret Island Meeting to Stop Trump” HERE)
Elites Are Horrified by Donald Trump. What If Republican Voters Don’t Agree?
By Greg Sargent. With anxiety about Donald Trump rising among GOP elites and conservatives, we’re seeing more and more efforts from right-leaning writers to explain the ugliness of Trumpism — its bigotry, its authoritarianism — as a way of dissuading Republican elected officials and GOP voters in coming primaries from supporting him.
Which gives rise to a question: Are the Republican candidates running against Trump making anything close to this same case? . . .
It’s true that some criticism has been directed at Trump for supporting Obamacare, abortion, gun control, and private property seizures. But those criticisms remain comfortably within the boundaries of GOP orthodoxy. Trump’s rivals seem to believe there is some risk, or at least nothing to gain, in hitting him for vowing not to touch the entitlements of aging Republicans, for attacking free trade deals as bad for workers, and for vowing a very hard line on immigrants and Muslims — as if such attacks would not win over Republican voters, or might even alienate them.
All the high-minded criticism from right-leaning writers could dissuade Republican politicians from supporting Trump, by warning them what a disaster he’d be for the country (and for conservatism and the GOP), thus persuading them not to act on short-term political expediency if he keeps winning. That’s a noble goal and could make a difference. But the fact that some of these criticisms of Trumpism are not being targeted towards Republican voters in any serious or sustained way tells us a lot about why Trump is succeeding. (Read more from “Elites Are Horrified by Donald Trump. What If Republican Voters Don’t Agree?” HERE)
Tech Titans, GOP Elite Plot Trump Attack on Private Island
By Douglas Ernst. A parade of tech titans flew to a private island over the weekend to discuss ways of derailing Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. Congressmen from both sides of the political aisle, political operatives, and influential members of the media were also in attendance.
The American Enterprise Institute held its annual World Forum on St. Simons Island, Georgia, on Sunday. Bill Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, said in an email that attendees were focused on finding a way to stop Trump, the Huffington Post reported Monday.
“A specter was haunting the World Forum–the specter of Donald Trump,” Kristol said while lifting a line from the “Communist Manifesto,” the website reported. “There was much unhappiness about his emergence, a good deal of talk, some of it insightful and thoughtful, about why he’s done so well, and many expressions of hope that he would be defeated. The key task now, to once again paraphrase Karl Marx, is less to understand Trump than to stop him” . . .
Radio host Rush Limbaugh weighed in on the event, which allegedly featured a a presentation by Rove on the Republican front-runner’s biggest weaknesses.
“It was a circle, and they were sitting around the circle, and they were all telling each other or asking each other, ‘How the hell did this happen?’ And it’s an understandable thing. They think they run the world. They think they control these things. And out of the blue comes the Trumpster,” said Limbaugh. “You got all these tech CEOs and all these left-wing inventors and tech people with these Republicans? That’s crony capitalism right in front of your face, or crony socialism.” (Read more from “Tech Titans, GOP Elite Plot Trump Attack on Private Island” HERE)