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If you are interested in research on crime and gun control, you will find a lot of original research at the CrimeResearch.org website.  Please visit.


Donald Trump's changing positions on many issues over the last year (It isn't just the massive changes over the last decade)

Everyone knows that Donald Trump has been a Democrat, Independent, flirted with Ross Perot's Reform Party (from the left), and finally running as a Republican.  But it isn't just on abortion, taxes, Obamacare, Obama's economic policies, and gun control that Trump has had radical changes in his political views.

While saying that he is a conservative, he has attacked Republicans as being "captives of their right wing."

 Take changes over the last year:

-- Medicare: 

On October 25, 2015 on ABC News:
on ABC News’ "This Week” where Trump said he agreed with Carson’s plan to replace the 50-year-old Medicare system with health savings accounts (HSA)."I’m OK with the savings accounts. I think it’s a good idea,” Trump said Sunday. “It’s a very down-the-middle idea. It works. It’s something that’s proven.”
On the question Sunday about whether he agreed with Carson’s idea that "Medicare probably won’t be necessary,” Trump said, "It’s possible. You’re going to have to look at that. But I’ll tell you what; the health savings accounts, I’ve been talking about it also. I think it’s a very good idea … it’s an idea whose probably time has come.”
On MSNBC (liberal audience) on October 27, 2015
"Ben [Carson] wants to knock out Medicare. I heard that over the weekend. He wants to abolish Medicare,” Trump said of Carson’s comments that Medicare “probably won’t be necessary” under his health care plan.
Trump added: “Abolishing Medicare, I don't think you'll get away with that one. It's actually a program that's worked. It’s a program that some people love, actually.”
The Washington Post has a long list of quotes from this year on Trump’s plan to defeat the Islamic State, Trump’s plan for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States,
 Trump’s plan for tax reform, Trump’s plan for the nuclear deal with Iran, and Trump’s plan for “Obamacare.

There is a good reason that a lot of conservatives and libertarians are very concerned about Trump's candidacy  (see this discussion at NR).


Now Donald Trump is openly moving towards being part of the establishment. What will happen after the election?

Trump is now saying that he is moving towards being with the establishment.  Can you imagine how much more Trump will change once he gets the Republican nomination?
"I think they're warming up. I want to be honest, I have received so many phone calls from people that you would call establishment, from people — generally speaking ... conservatives, Republicans — that want to come onto our team. . . . You know what? There's a point at which: Let's get to be a little establishment." 



The Republican "Establishment" views Ted Cruz, not Donald Trump as the Threat

UPDATE: After all the blow back that I got on Twitter about this post, it is amazing that Trump is now saying that he is moving towards being with the establishment:
"I think they're warming up. I want to be honest, I have received so many phone calls from people that you would call establishment, from people — generally speaking ... conservatives, Republicans — that want to come onto our team."
Original: Nate Silver at 538 explains that he thinks Trump is much more likely to be the Republican nominee because the Republican establishment seems to be fine with Trump winning.  From Nate's discussion:
But so far, the party isn’t doing much to stop Trump. Instead, it’s making such an effort against Cruz. Consider: 
  • The governor of Iowa, Terry Branstad, said he wanted Cruz defeated.
  • Bob Dole warned of “cataclysmic” losses if Cruz was the nominee, and said Trump would fare better.
  • Mitch McConnell and other Republicans senators have been decidedly unhelpful to Cruz when discussing his constitutional eligibility to be president.
One doesn't have to look very far to see how Trump would protect vested interests.  While Ted Cruz will end the massive ethanol subsidies, a bold move for someone running in Iowa, Donald Trump did the opposite: he called for higher ethanol mandates.  This is the reason that Governor Terry Branstad is attacking Cruz. From The Hill Newspaper:
The event came hours after Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R) told voters in the first state to choose presidential candidates that they shouldn’t vote for Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas), one of Trump’s most potent challengers.
Branstad cited Cruz’s opposition to continuing the ethanol mandate after 2022, saying Cruz is “heavily financed by Big Oil.” 
Trump welcomed Branstad’s comment. 
Cruz has “been mixed in the subject, he goes wherever the votes are, so he all of the sudden went over here, and then all of the sudden, he got slapped,” Trump said. “So it’s very interesting to see.” 
Trump was generally very supportive of the ethanol law, saying he is “100 percent” behind the ethanol industry, a powerful force in Iowa. . . .
When Ben Carson did the economically responsible thing and challenged tax deductions in the current code, something that would challenge many vested interests, Trump attacked Carson.


Newest op-ed the New York Post: "What Bernie Sanders misses about the rise in campaign cash"

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John Lott has a new piece in the New York Post:
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders thinks that millionaires and billionaries buy elections. 
He hammered away during Sunday’s Democratic debate, complaining about people “pouring unbelievable sums of money into the political process.” 
According to estimates made by the Center for Responsive Politics, $3.77 billion was spent on elections for federal office during the 2014 midterms. 
Sanders blames this on the Supreme Court’s 2010 decision in Citizens United, prohibiting the government from restricting independent political spending by unions, corporations and advocacy groups. But the growth rate in campaign spending long predates that case, and has actually slowed down since that decision. 
There was only a 4 percent increase in spending from the 2010 to the 2014 midterm elections. So much for Sanders’ “explosion.” 
In fact, this rate of growth was unusually small — much smaller than the 31 percent average growth that usually took place between midterm congressional elections from 1998 to 2010. 
So what really causes political spending to increase over time? The answer won’t make Sanders very happy. 
The truth is that government expenditures and campaign expenditures have increased in tandem. Total campaign spending soared from $1.6 billion in 1998 to $3.77 billion in 2014. Federal government spending rose at virtually the same rate, going from $1.65 trillion to $3.9 trillion. 
With more at stake, it makes sense for there to be an even bigger fight over who controls the federal government. If federal spending still amounted to 2 percent to 3 percent of GDP — as it did a century ago — people likely wouldn’t care as passionately about the outcome of most elections. 
In the Journal of Law and Economics in 2000, I looked at the years 1976 to 1994 and studied spending on gubernatorial and state legislative campaigns. Almost 80 percent of the increase in campaign spending could be explained by the growth of state governments. . . .
The rest of the piece is available here