It's been a long and grueling journey, but I finally finished the book this afternoon. No easy task, since it runs to 612 pages - and that's before you get to the footnotes. If you have a lot of time on your hands, I'd recommend reading it. If you don't, here's a few snippets that you may find worthwhile:
1) Page 364 - Trump was the first presidential nominee in history to receive no major newspaper endorsements.
2) Page 394 - "The margin of the GOP victory was found in three states (Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin ) which Trump won by be TOTAL of 77,744 votes - less than the capacity of some Big Ten football stadiums. In those states, Hillary won 600,000 fewer votes than Obama did in 2012, with particularly deep drop -offs in the urban precincts.
3) "Exit polls revealed that Supreme Court appointments were "the most important factor" for 21% of the electorate. Trump won 56 % of those voters, compared to Clinton's 41%. Without the Republican takeover of the Senate in 2014, which allowed Mitch McConnell the opportunity to prevent a vote from getting passed on Merrick Garland, it's very likely that there would now be a Democratic president.
4) David Wasserman, of the Cook Political Report, concluded that the most likely brand to be found in a Republican county is Cracker Barrel, while the most likely brand to be found in a Democratic country is Whole Foods. In 1992, Bill Clinton won 61% of the Whole Foods counties, and 40% of the Cracker Barrel counties. By 2000, George W. won 75% of the Cracker Barrel counties, and 43% of the Whole Foods counties. In 2008, Obama won 80% of the Whole Foods counties, and 35% of the Cracker Barrel counties. In 2016, Trump won 76% of the Cracker Barrel counties, and only 22% of the Whole Foods counties.
Broadly speaking, Cracker Barrel counties are most often found in rural ares with less population density, less diversity, lower incomes, and lower education rates. Whole Foods counties, meanwhile, tend to concentrate in upscale urban and suburban settings, with diverse populations and high numbers of college graduates.
Cracker Barrel was founded in Tennessee in 1969, with a "Southern country" theme. The excerpt below says a lot about the Cracker Barrel philosophy - and its customers:
"During the 1990s, the company was the subject of controversy for its official stance against gay and lesbian employees and for discriminatory practices against African-American customers and female employees. In 2004, a U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) investigation found that Cracker Barrel discriminated against minority customers; patrons complained of racially segregated seating and service quality. In an agreement with the USDOJ, Cracker Barrel implemented non-discrimination policies and pledged to focus on improving minority representation and civic involvement, particularly in the black community. Company shareholders added sexual orientation to the company's non-discrimination policy in 2002."
5) Page 412 - the 2016 Steele dossier reported that Russia had been cultivating, supporting, and assisting Trump for at least five years. and that his team had accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin on his political opponents (sounds like collusion, doesn't it?).
6) Page 423. Trump used the term "American carnage" in his inaugural speech, even though NONE of what he said was true.
7) Page 44 - The day after Trump fired James Comey, Trump hosted two top Russian officials in the oval office, where he described Come as a real nut job. In that same meeting, he also disclosed highly sensitive intelligence (obtained from Israeal) about ISIS. The only photos of the meeting were shared by a Russian state photographer. NO AMERICA MEDIA WERE PRESENT.