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I asked our team to pause for family time this week before kids return to school. The homepage is updated daily. The Digest returns on Monday, August 2. —Mark Alexander

Gary Bauer / Oct. 21, 2015

The Face of Evil

When you think of evil in the world today, what image comes to mind? Perhaps it’s the black-clad thugs of ISIS cutting the throats of Christians. Maybe it’s the bespectacled Ayatollah Khamenei chanting, “Death to Israel, Death to America.” Perhaps it’s a steely-eyed Vladimir Putin plotting his next conquest.

The Face Of Evil

When you think of evil in the world today, what image comes to mind? Perhaps it’s the black-clad thugs of ISIS cutting the throats of Christians. Maybe it’s the bespectacled Ayatollah Khamenei chanting, “Death to Israel, Death to America.” Perhaps it’s a steely-eyed Vladimir Putin plotting his next conquest.

All of those images would be understandable. I suspect the farthest thing from your mind would be a little girl with pink ribbons in her hair.

But evil was the only thing that came to my mind as I watched the video of little Rahf Abuesha, holding a large carving knife, saying, “I want to stab a Jew.”

My anger is not directed at the girl, but rather at her father, Abdulhaleem, a teacher at a refugee camp in Jordan. Teaching children, like this otherwise adorable little girl, to hate and to kill is evil — pure and simple.

As we sit comfortably in our office suites, walking about our shopping malls or enjoying dinner in bustling restaurants, Israelis are confronted by a reality that is almost too dark for many Americans to imagine: They are literally surrounded by enemies who are taught from birth to kill Jews.

This is what Israel is facing each and every day.

The ancient hatred of anti-Semitism is alive and well. It is being nurtured in schools, in mosques and in homes throughout Gaza, the West Bank and the entire Middle East. The evil that teaches kids to kill is just one symptom of the virulent virus that is radical Islam.

Israel is the tip of the spear in the fight against militant Islam. America must stand with Israel.

GOP Civil War?

Several new polls were released [yesterday] and they all show the same thing: The 2016 Republican presidential primary continues to be a two-man race between Donald Trump and Dr. Ben Carson, with the rest of the candidates stuck in the single digits. (Senator Marco Rubio managed to break into double digits with 13% in one poll.)

Trump’s continued lead has the GOP establishment panicking. Byron York of the Washington Examiner writes that some Republicans are preparing for “massive resistance” against Trump.

Rather than making peace with the GOP front runner, York reports that “some are preparing to do whatever it takes to bring [Trump] down. Which could lead to an extraordinary scenario in which GOP stalwarts go to war to destroy their own party’s likely nominee.”

It’s difficult to imagine how that scenario plays out. It seems unlikely that Trump would back down from a fight. He has the resources to punch back just as hard, if not harder.

But if attacks against Trump succeed in driving his numbers down, what happens next? Who benefits? Do his supporters stay with the GOP or do they stay home next November?

The GOP establishment has already placed its bet on Jeb Bush. But he’s fifth in the national polls. One new poll finds Bush is now running fourth in Florida — behind Trump, Carson and Rubio.

If the race comes down to Trump vs. Bush, or perhaps anybody versus Bush, that could be very embarrassing for party elites. One recent poll testing Trump and Bush head-to-head found Bush getting, well, trumped by 18 points. Against Rubio, it was a slaughter — 69% for Marco and 31% for Jeb.

If Biden Runs…

The chatter about a potential Biden bid for the presidency continues to intensify. Fox News reporter Ed Henry claims three independent sources have told him that Biden will run. In fact, the Washington Post is so certain that it has already written its report announcing Biden’s run — and posted it too!

If Biden runs, he begins with considerable strengths. For example:

  • Hillary Clinton’s has a nine-point net negative favorability rating (42% favorable to 51% unfavorable.) In contrast, Joe Biden’s favorability rating is 12 points positive (49% favorable to 37% unfavorable.) Not only do people generally like Biden, they trust him.

  • There is a vast liberal donor base that remains uncommitted. According to one analysis, less than 10% of Obama’s 2012 bundlers (major donors and fundraisers) have committed to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Given Clinton’s relative dominance thus far, that is a very telling figure.

  • Lastly, polls suggest that Biden would be a stronger general election candidate than Mrs. Clinton. A recent Fox News poll found Donald Trump beating Hillary Clinton by five points. But Trump trailed Biden by 13.

Webb Out

[Tuesday], former Virginia Senator Jim Webb announced that he was ending his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. As for his future plans, campaign aides suggested that Webb might pursue an independent bid for the presidency.

Webb’s departure from the Democratic primary will hardly be noticed. Registering at one or two percent, he was barely a blip in the national polls. But he could have more influence as an independent candidate in the 2016 general election if he can get on the ballot in all 50 states.

In a close contest, third party candidates can make the difference. In 2012, Obama barely won Florida and Ohio.

Remember the Florida fiasco in 2000? George W. Bush won the state by just over 500 votes. Green Party candidate Ralph Nader received more than 97,000 votes, costing Al Gore the state and the presidency.

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