Two Political Peas In a Pod
With both of them susceptible to sticking their foot in their mouth, it seems as if former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris are meant for one another this election cycle.
Biden is a gaffe machine. The ultimate gaffe machine.
But who would have thought that Harris would also have a slip of the tongue during this campaign season? Considering that you have been picked as his running mate, wouldn’t Harris make sure that she had her thoughts and words together before she spoke?
During a virtual roundtable in Arizona with small business owners, Harris had a slip of the tongue when she suggested that under “a Harris administration,” small businesses would have a strong ally.
“A Harris administration, together with Joe Biden as the president of the United States,” she said. Harris then quickly corrected herself, “The Biden-Harris administration will provide access to $100 billion in low-interest loans and investments from minority business owners.”
Harris’ little slip fueled the internet fodder that she was picked to eventually take over for Biden because of his ailing mental state.
Speaking of Joe, the former vice president didn’t help shake of that stigma attached to him when he once again stuck his foot in his mouth during an address where he mentioned that the “Obama administration rescued the auto industry.”
According to Biden, his efforts to save the auto industry was “just the beginning if he and Obama “get re-elected.”
Billionaire and former presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg can’t keep Biden from making any more gaffes, but he can spend $100 million to help him win the state of Florida READ MORE
The slow-moving Category 2 storm is expected to make landfall somewhere between the panhandle and Louisiana. Trump has already declared federal disaster aid for the region, and we can expect a big dose of Rep. Matt Gaetz when the storm impacts the region. Pensacola could receive a direct hit, something many Gaetz haters would love to see, especially if there was a chance if the roof on his house would blow off.
Rep. Darren Soto (D) had his bill to rename a post office in his congressional district after civil rights activist Althea Margaret Daily Mills. Mills sued Polk County in an effort to desegregate public schools
Commissioner Nikki Fried @NikkiFriedFL-A Hurricane Warning now extends to the Florida border for soon-to-be Hurricane #Sally. Floridians in the western Panhandle should watch for potential dangerous flash flooding and river flooding in the coming days.Be prepared and stay safe.
Marco Rubio @marcorubio –America wasn’t founded on racism. It was founded by a declaration that all men are created equal. The great movements in our history weren’t rejections of our founding principles, they were demands that we live up to them.
Rick Scott @SenRickScott –I’m glad @DHSgov has taken this important step. We should not be purchasing products that come from areas where human rights violations and forced labor are occurring. We will continue to hold Communist China accountable.
Rep. Lois Frankel @RepLoisFrankel –The #GlobalGagRule interrupts critical #healthcare around the world, yet @realdonaldtrump is asking for its expansion during a pandemic. He should be focusing on fighting #COVID19, not attacking access to health care in other countries.
Rep. Val Demings @RepValDemings –In support of @MCOand the traveling public, I’ve joined a letter today urging the extension of the aviation tax holiday that we created in the CARES Act earlier this year. America’s economic health requires our ongoing support.
Rep. Michael Waltz @RepMichaelWaltz –For the first time since 1971, there are 5 tropical cyclones over the Atlantic basin. We’re now entering peak hurricane season, so please ensure you & your family are stocked up with supplies and are prepared.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz @RepDWStweets -Americans need trust in their Post Offices, especially in an election year. If nothing else, DeJoy needs to reconnect the sorting machines he’s unplugged and bring the postal service back to normal capacity. Anything less is political manipulation of the @USPS
Rep. Carlos G Smith @CarlosGSmith -There’s also no help from the GOP legislature or @GovRonDeSantis What if I told you, he had $5B+ in CARES Act $$ and wasn’t telling the public how he plans to spend it until 2021? Floridians are unemployed, small biz are closing & they sit on their hands.
“Meshuggah! Frankel supports ban of Loomer’s “Lois Frankel loves Black Lives Matter” ad” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – With less than two months before Americans take to the polls, the race in Florida’s 21st congressional district can be described as being nothing more than “meshuggah” or crazy, as our Jewish-American and Yiddish-speaking friends would say. Conservative journalist Laura Loomer has managed to make some more waves with her latest video where she calls Democrat Rep. Lois Frankel’s love for the Black Lives Matter movement “is meshuggah.” Loomer accuses Frankel of supporting the radical anti-Israel, anti-Police and criminal BLM movement after tweeting support for the movement back in June, and in subsequent postings and video meetings where she praises Black Lives Matter activists that she invited to participate in the video calls. Loomer’s ad “Lois Frankel is Meshuggah” has been denounced by Halie Sophie, the executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of American and former advisor to President Barack Obama and Senator Kamal Harris. Sophie tweeted that Loomer “should be banned” for her “dishonest & distasteful” and “vile ad” attacking Rep. Lois Frankel. The tweet was retweeted by about 15 people, including Rep. Frankel. Frankel’s retweet calling for Loomer’s ad to be banned did not go unnoticed. Loomer’s Chief Strategist Karen Giorno penned a press release calling out Sophie’s remarks, saying that Frankel’s retweet openly advocates “for her political opponent’s voice to be suppressed” and it reveals the congresswoman’s “contempt an apathy for the rights of voters who overwhelmingly selected Loomer as their candidate during the Republican primary.”
“Trump Accepts Joe Rogan’s Offer To Moderate 4-Hour Presidential Debate With Biden” by The Floridian’s Mona Salama – President Trump on Monday says he would gladly participate in a four-hour presidential debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden that would be moderated by MMA commentator and podcast host Joe Rogan. Trump quoted tweeted a tweet from Tim Kennedy, a retired mixed martial artist, who posted that Rogan offered during his podcast to moderate a four-hour debate between Trump and Biden without a live audience. “On my podcast with @joerogan he offered to moderate a debate between @JoeBiden and @realDonaldTrump It would be four hours with no live audience. Just the two candidates, cameras, and their vision of how to move this country forward. Who wants this?” Kennedy said in his tweet. Trump quickly responded to Kennedy question, tweeting “I do!” Rogan outlined the debate offer last Friday during his podcast program “The Joe Rogan Experience” with Kennedy. “First of all, I want no one else in the room, just the three of us, and you’d have to stream it live so no one can edit it, and I would want them in there for hours,” Rogan said. “And ideas?” Kennedy responded. “We get to hear what they actually believe in? What they’re gonna do? Who they’re gonna’ appoint? What judges are gonna’ be coming in, what policies from gun control to all of it?”
“Cammack scores Trump endorsement just as her opponent calls her a liar” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – As it’s expected whenever a Republican congressional candidate wins a contested primary race in a very Republican-leaning district, the Conservative and Republican political universes pour in their support for the nominee that will is all-but become the next member of Congress in that particular district. Kat Cammack, who is a longtime staffer for retiring Rep. Ted Yoho (R), won her primary race and is now reaping the spoils of victory. Not only did she score the GOP endorsement of all endorsement — President Donald Trump’s support — Cammack has landed the National Right to Life and NRA endorsements to boot. “I strongly believe our right to carry shall not be infringed. As a concealed carry permit holder and wife to a first responder, I am adamant about protecting the Second Amendment, as one of the most basic American rights. As a board member of the Alachua County Friends of the NRA, I have put my passion for protecting gun rights into action. When I was serving as a Deputy Chief of Staff within the District, I was proud to fight to protect our gun rights on Capitol Hill. I look forward to defending guns against any attempt by the Left to take them away.” Cammack’s Progressive Democrat opponent, Adam Christenson who is considered a longshot to win the race, is not backing down from the challenge. Christenson is trying to capitalize on a recent Fox News appearance by Cammack where he says she lied about Rep. Ted Yoho calling Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D) a f*cking B*tch during an encounter in the Capitol earlier this year.
“Crist Calls Felon’s Rights Decision by Appellate Court “the Wrong Call”” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit announced that ex-felons had failed to prove that the voting requirements in the sunshine state amount to an unconstitutional poll tax. It was Chief Judge William Pryor who expressed that “because the felons failed to prove violation of the Constitution, we reverse the judgement of the district court and vacate the challenged portions of its injunction.” This result has generated criticism from Democratic leadership, and one Florida Democrat who is not mincing any words is Florida Rep. Charlie Crist (D). Rep. Charlie Crist, the former Florida Governor who is now running a close reelection campaign against his Republican Rival Anna Paulina Luna, has taken to Twitter to share his disagreement with the Court’s ruling. Sharing an article discussing how “Florida felons can’t vote until they pay fines, fees,” the Florida lawmaker commented that he is “deeply disappointed by this decision to overrule the will of Florida voters.” It was in the 2018 midterm elections that more than 65% of the vote was cast in favor of restoring the voting rights of felons that had “completed all of the terms of their sentences.” Crist added that “the right to vote doesn’t come with a price tag – it’s a right guaranteed to all Americans, enshrined in our Constitution” before calling the decision “the wrong call.”
“Pelosi Calls Trump-Brokered Middle East Peace Deals ‘A Distraction’” by The Floridian’s Mona Salama – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer dismissed the historic peace agreements being reached in the Middle East, calling the progress a “distraction” from dealing with the coronavirus crisis. During an appearance on CNN’s “The Situation Room” on Friday, Blitzer brought up the “dramatic announcement” made earlier from President Trump on “normalization of diplomatic relations between Israel and an Arab state, Bahrain” and asked Pelosi “How much credit do you give the president for these peace agreements?” “Well, hopefully, they won’t— hopefully they will beneficial to the region,” Pelosi responded, refusing to answer if Trump deserves credit and slamming the Trump administration for not yet securing a peace agreement between Israeli and the Palestinians. “We’ve been waiting for a very long time for the president’s proposal for an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement that honored the two-state solution. It was coming in two weeks, it was coming in two months, it was coming in six months. It still hasn’t come in any way that has brought peace.” “So, good for him for having a distraction on a day when the numbers of people who are affected and the numbers of people who are dying from this virus only increases,” Pelosi added, before rambling about House Democrats attempts to pass a new coronavirus stimulus relief package. Earlier, President Trump announced that he has brokered a deal to establish full diplomatic relations between Bahrain and Israel, making it the second such agreement between Israel and an Arab nation in less than a month.
“Democrats, advocates seethe over Florida voting rights ruling” by The Hill’s John Kruzel – Democrats and civil rights groups are seething over a court ruling last week that upheld a Florida law requiring indigent former felons to pay off outstanding court fees as a precondition to having their voting rights restored, a policy critics compare to a modern-day version of the Jim Crow-era poll tax. The 6-4 opinion by the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday was expected to disproportionately burden the franchise of African Americans with felony records in Florida, where Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, is running neck and neck with President Trump. “This decision takes away voting rights from 800,000 Floridians, 2/3s of them Black. It’s a modern day poll tax,” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) wrote in a tweet. “When we vote in November, we vote to end their disenfranchisement.” As election-related lawsuits pile up, legal experts say the court fight over the controversial Florida law has produced perhaps the most consequential ruling to date given Florida’s role as a swing state and the large number of affected would-be voters. The Friday ruling, which represented a bitter disappointment for voting rights activists, comes less than two months before the November elections and just weeks ahead of the state’s Oct. 5 voter registration deadline. “This ruling runs counter to the foundational principle that Americans do not have to pay to vote,” Julie Ebenstein, a senior staff attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union’s (ACLU) Voting Rights Project, said in a statement. “The gravity of this decision cannot be overstated. It is an affront to the spirit of democracy.”
“Florida governor declares state of emergency in Panhandle as Hurricane Sally approaches” by Associated Press – Shortly after Sally reached hurricane strength, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency for the Panhandle’s two westernmost counties. DeSantis issued an executive order Monday evening directing state resources to help with response, recovery and mitigation efforts in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties. Federal assistance can also be sought for the areas. Forecasters say Sally, now an extremely dangerous Category 2 hurricane, could approach major hurricane strength as it nears the U.S. Gulf Coast. The National Hurricane Center said Monday that Sally has recently strengthened and developed an inner core, while the warm waters of the Gulf favor additional strengthen in the coming hours. The hurricane is currently packing 100-mph (155-kph) winds as it meanders offshore. The Miami-based forecasting center said sustained winds of around 110 mph (177 kph) are now expected just before the hurricane makes landfall. That is just shy of a Category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, which is capable of catastrophic damage. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines call for non-congregate sheltering, where evacuees can continue to practice social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The emergency order authorizes the activation of sheltering agreements with area hotels.
“Phase 2 underway, but South Florida bars say they’re still being unfairly left out” by Local 10’s Andrew Perez – Holding signs and demanding a shot — to get back to work — bar owners and employees are demonstrating and pleading to be allowed to reopen. They say these bars and nightclubs are a huge part of South Florida life, and they insist they can operate just like a restaurant, with the same rules and guidelines to prevent spreading COVID-19. But for now, they are still shuttered in Miami-Dade and Broward, even as those counties join Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan. “I don’t know what the logic is,” says Ricky Sekuloski, of Cafeina in Wynwood. “I don’t understand it.” City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said Monday that he disagrees with Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s view that bars shouldn’t open until there’s a coronavirus vaccine. “I don’t agree with saying that we need to wait for a vaccine [to reopen bars],” Suarez said. “And I’ll talk to him about this. I don’t like putting targets like that that you can’t really control. I’ve already been meeting with that community and starting the discussion, just like we did with restaurants and gyms.” Broward County Mayor Dale Holness has mirrored Gimenez in saying bars are too dangerous to open at this point with COVID-19 still in the community. Miami-Dade is catching up to Broward, with bowling alleys, movie theaters and some other entertainment venues getting the go-ahead to reopen with restrictions. Zoo Miami announced that after being closed for months, it will reopen Tuesday.
“Andrew Gillium, the former Democratic nominee for Florida governor, comes out at bisexual” by NY Times’ Patricia Mazzei – In his first interview since he was found in a Miami Beach hotel room in March with a man who was struggling to breathe after an apparent overdose, Andrew Gillum, the former Democratic nominee for Florida governor, came out publicly as bisexual. Mr. Gillum, who sat down with his wife, R. Jai, for separate and joint interviews, which aired Monday on “The Tamron Hall Show,” said in July that he had completed treatment in rehab for alcoholism and depression. But he had not previously addressed his sexuality, despite years of chatter about it in political circles in Tallahassee, the Florida capital, where he was mayor for four years. “That is something that I have never shared publicly before,” he told Tamron Hall. In 2018, Mr. Gillum shot to national fame after winning the Democratic gubernatorial primary. He eventually lost narrowly in the general election to Ron DeSantis. Mr. Gillum, 41, said he would go to rehab a few days after the March 13 incident at the Mondrian South Beach, in which the police were called but no one was arrested. Mr. Gillum’s friend, who was also an escort, was taken to the hospital. Leaked hotel room photographs showed Mr. Gillum naked on the floor. The photos were taken without his consent while he was unconscious, Mr. Gillum told Ms. Hall. He said he went to the hotel to meet a friend after drinking by himself for several hours. He remembers having another drink in the room and then waking up passed out to the presence of the police and paramedics.
“Biden Faces Worries That Latino Support Slipping in Florida” by AP News – Sen. Kamala Harris’ motorcade raced past Colombian neighborhoods and made a quick stop for takeout in Doral — or “Doral-zuela” as it’s known locally because of its large Venezuelan population — before speeding through the Cuban stronghold of Hialeah. But during her first trip to Florida as Joe Biden’s running mate last week, Harris did little to court this region’s booming — and politically influential — Latino population. She instead focused on African American leaders waiting at a historically Black university in Miami Gardens. “You truly are the future of our country,” Harris said into a megaphone after the motorcade pulled up to Florida Memorial University, where a marching band serenaded her ahead of an hourlong discussion with local Black leaders. “You are the ones who are going to inspire us and fight for the ideals of our country.” In America’s leading presidential battleground, there’s mounting anxiety among Democrats that the Biden campaign’s standing among Latinos is slipping, potentially giving President Donald Trump an opening in his reelection bid. That’s fueling an urgent effort by Biden, Harris and their allies to shore up older voters, suburbanites and African Americans to make up for potential shortcomings elsewhere.
“Florida Covid-19 cases increase in children as schools reopen” by CNN – VIDEO- As some classrooms reopen in Florida, coronavirus cases have increased among school age children. CNN’s Rosa Flores reports Florida Governor Ron Desantis hasn’t released Covid-19 data on schools since the return to in-person classes.
“Broward teachers must return to campus once school reopens” by Sun Sentinel’s Scott Travis – Broward teachers will no longer be allowed to work from home once schools open to students, a requirement that has caused consternation in other districts.
Instead, they will have to return to school and simultaneously teach students in their classrooms and those at home, Jeff Moquin, chief of staff to Superintendent Robert Runcie, said in an email Monday to School Board members. Those who aren’t comfortable would need to take a leave of absence, he wrote. The note doesn’t say when schools will reopen, but Runcie has previously said it should be some time in October. “In order to optimize the likelihood of a successful transition, it will be necessary for all teachers to return to the physical campus and provide synchronous instruction for those students on campus, as well as those electing to remain in the eLearning environment,” Moquin wrote. Anna Fusco, president of the Broward Teachers Union, said she has a “ginormous problem” with this directive. She said the union is still negotiating what a return to campus will look like. Right now, all students are learning online. Many teachers who were uncomfortable returning to campus due to COVID-19 had hoped to stay home and teach students who had signed up to learn virtually. But that’s not going to be possible, Moquin wrote. “We’re still trying to get information. What’s being planned for [personal protective equipment] and sanitization, what are the plans when people get sick,” Fusco said. “What about teachers over 65 or ones with diabetes or heart conditions? In my opinion, they should be able to teach remotely.”
“Joe Biden scheduled to make 2 stops in Florida on Tuesday” by Associated Press – Florida is the nation’s leading presidential battleground, and there’s mounting anxiety among Democrats that Joe Biden’s standing among Latinos in the state is slipping. That could give President Donald Trump a crucial opening in Florida, a must-win for Republicans. Biden’s campaign and its allies are shoring up its coalition of older voters, suburbanites and African Americans to make up for potential shortcomings elsewhere. Allies closest to the Latino community said there are reasons to worry. A Democrat running for the state Senate in Miami-Dade County, Javier Fernandez, says the Biden campaign has work to do. Biden is scheduled to make his first visit to Florida as the Democratic nominee on Tuesday. He is set to speak at the roundtable discussion with veterans at 1:30 p.m. in Tampa before heading to Kissimmee for a Hispanic Heritage Month event at 6:30 p.m. Biden’s trip comes following Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris’ visit last week to Miami-Dade County.
“Governor DeSantis appoints new Florida Supreme Court Justice” by WTVY’s Hanna Rizzi, WTVY Staff and WJHG Newsroom – Monday, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the appointment of Judge Jamie Grosshans to the Florida Supreme Court. Judge Grosshans fills the vacancy created by former Florida Supreme Court Justice Robert Luck’s appointment to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit by President Donald Trump. “I’m pleased to announce that I’ve selected Judge Jamie Grosshans to serve as a justice on the Florida Supreme Court,” said Governor DeSantis. “As an appeals court judge, a successful lawyer in private practice and a working mother of three, I am confident that Judge Grosshans’ breadth of experience in the legal profession and in life will make her a successful Supreme Court Justice, and I look forward to her assuming the bench on our state’s highest court.” Grosshans, 41, currently serves as a Judge on the Florida Fifth District Court of Appeal, where she has served since being appointed in 2018. Prior to serving on the Fifth District Court, she served as an Orange County Court Judge in the Ninth Judicial Circuit of Florida presiding over criminal and civil matters. Judge Grosshans received her J.D. from the University of Mississippi School of Law, where she graduated cum laude. Following law school, she served as an Assistant State Attorney for Orange County and later founded her own law firm focusing on family law and criminal defense. Judge Grosshans and her husband currently live in Orlando with their three children.
“President Pelosi? How a contested election brawl could unfold on Capitol Hill” by Fox News’ Chad Pergram – President Trump frequently suggests that election chaos could propel his favorite foil to the White House. “If you don’t have [the election settled] by the end of the year, crazy [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) would become president,” augured Trump. Not quite. A lot of things must first spill off the rails for Pelosi to head to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But, election and congressional officials are starting to worry about what could unfold this fall and winter if they struggle to determine whether President Trump or Joe Biden prevails in battleground states. President Trump frequently suggests that election chaos could propel his favorite foil to the White House. “If you don’t have [the election settled] by the end of the year, crazy [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) would become president,” augured Trump. Not quite. A lot of things must first spill off the rails for Pelosi to head to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But, election and congressional officials are starting to worry about what could unfold this fall and winter if they struggle to determine whether President Trump or Joe Biden prevails in battleground states. Congress passed the legislation after the disputed 1876 presidential election between President Rutherford B. Hayes and Samuel Tilden. Electoral votes were far from certain in Florida, South Carolina, Louisiana and Oregon. There was a sprint to settle the electoral college tally before Inauguration Day, 1877. Congress created an “electoral commission” to resolve the issues. In those days, the president assumed office on March 4.
“Trump administration blocks some Xinjiang goods from China suspected of being made with slave labor” by CNN’s Geneva Sands and Ben Westcott – The Trump administration issued new import restrictions on Monday against Chinese companies it accuses of using slave labor, including products from suspected mass prison camps in China’s western Xinjiang region. Five companies or industrial parks in Xinjiang and one company in eastern Anhui province, which make apparel, cotton, computer and hair products, have been named in the new order by United States Customs and Border Protection (US CBP). One of Xinjiang’s “vocational skills education and training centers” is also named in the order, a name used euphemistically by Beijing to refer to the large re-education camps where inmates from Muslim minorities are allegedly detained, made to pledge loyalty to the Chinese Communist Party, and work as free or low-cost forced labor in factories and nearby facilities. “This is not a vocational center, it is a concentration camp,” said Ken Cuccinelli, the senior official performing the duties of the deputy secretary for the Department of Homeland. “A place where religious and ethnic minorities are subject to abuse and forced to work in heinous conditions with no recourse and no freedom. This is modern day slavery.” The agency issued “Withhold Release Orders” for all six Chinese entities, which are intended to prevent goods suspected to have been made with forced labor from entering the US. The orders allow Customs and Border Protection to detain shipments at US ports and gives companies the opportunity to export their shipments or demonstrate that the merchandise was not produced with forced labor. The new US actions fell short of what some had expected to be a more widespread ban on imports from China, which would have targeted all cotton and tomato products exported from the Xinjiang region to the US. Cuccinelli said that stronger action was still under review by the US administration.
“Absence of Coronavirus-Aid Deal Prompts Blame Game in Washington” by WSJ’s Kristina Peterson and Natalie Andrews – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is urging House Democrats to wait for a better deal on the coronavirus aid package when they return to work Monday. They may still be waiting on Election Day. With talks between the White House and Democrats at a standoff, both parties are looking increasingly likely to spend the final weeks before the election defending the absence of a deal and blaming the other rather than restarting negotiations. Democrats privately hope that prospects of a larger deal will improve after the election. Republicans say Democrats’ ambitions for a larger package blocked narrower help for households and businesses, and that the economy’s partial recovery has lessened the need for relief. The GOP’s Senate leaders put a $300 billion “skinny” bill that included jobless aid and small-business relief on the floor last week to give vulnerable lawmakers in tight contests something to show voters even though it failed to advance. Other Republican lawmakers, already wary of adding to the deficit, feel less anxiety over skipping more aid altogether. “If you’d asked me two or three weeks ago, I’d say very, very negative,” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa), referring to the economic impact of no further stimulus aid. But based on recent data, he said he now saw “a lot less of an impact than I would have thought two weeks ago.”
“Trump says Biden, Dems want ‘American nightmare’ in pitch to Latino voters” by Fox News’ Andrew O’Reilly – President Trump sought to align Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden with the more progressive wing of the Democratic Party on Monday evening – arguing that a Biden White House would steer the United States toward socialism as he made his pitch to Latino voters in the battleground state of Arizona. Noting that many Hispanic-Americans emigrated to the U.S from countries ruled by socialist or communist leaders – specifically mentioning Venezuela and Cuba – Trump argued that the far-left wing of the Democratic Party would use Biden to enact their policy proposals if he is elected this November. “Many Hispanic-Americans came here to pursue the American dream,” Trump said during a roundtable event in Phoenix before claiming that the Democrats “are asking for an American nightmare of whatever you want to call it.” “We’re not going to be another Venezuela,” Trump added. “We’re not going to let that happen to our country.” Home to the world’s largest oil reserves, Venezuela was for decades an economic leader in the western hemisphere and, despite a massive gap between rich and poor, was a major destination for neighboring Colombians and other Latin Americans fleeing their less prosperous and more troubled homelands. But in recent years, the country has been gripped by widespread malnutrition, disease and violence, and critics accuse strongman leader Nicolás Maduro of unfairly winning an election in 2018 for a second six-year term by banning his popular rivals from running and jailing others. Trump’s comments come amid a sweep of western states over the last two days, where he has attempted to appeal to Latino voters in the run-up to the November 3 election. While Monday’s roundtable was billed as a “Latinos for Trump” event – and felt more like a campaign rally with a raucous and vocal crowd in attendance – the president faces an uphill battle when it comes to winning over Hispanic voters.
“Justice Department watchdog looking into Roger Stone sentencing changes” by CNN’s Katelyn Polantz – The Justice Department inspector general’s office has made inquiries into how the department handled the changing sentencing recommendations of Roger Stone, according to two sources. The IG initially took interest in the case after the four prosecutors on it resigned in protest of Attorney General William Barr’s intervention. Stone was eventually sentenced to 40 months in prison and President Donald Trump later commuted the sentence altogether. “We welcome the review,” Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said on Monday. A spokesperson for the IG’s office would not confirm or deny the investigation.
NBC News first reported the inquiry on Monday. It’s unclear what impact any investigation by Inspector General Michael Horowitz may have on the Justice Department or on the current state of politics — with the President repeatedly praising Stone and attacking investigators as part of his reelection campaign. The independent watchdog’s purview is relatively limited to fact-finding and making recommendations, and reports from the IG’s office often take months if not years to produce. Career prosecutors with the Justice Department in Washington originally recommended a harsh sentence for Stone’s convictions of lying to Congress, obstruction and threatening a witness. But Barr stepped in, toning down what the Justice Department requested for his penalty after the President criticized the recommendation in a tweet. The four prosecutors on the case resigned before the sentencing, and since then, two have publicly said — in a Washington Post column and in testimony to Congress — they believed Barr was undercutting the law to protect a friend of the President’s. The incident has long drawn scrutiny about Barr’s political influence over cases of interest to the President. The prosecutors at Stone’s trial proved their case that Stone had lied to Congress about his attempts to contact WikiLeaks in 2016 in order to protect the President.
“The Campaign’s Key Half-Hour? The Start of the First Debate.” By WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib – The most important 30 minutes of this year’s presidential campaign haven’t arrived yet. They will come Sept. 29, in the first half-hour of the first presidential debate. That is the crucial period when Joe Biden will have his best chance to show he’s up to the job, and give wavering voters who don’t really like President Trump a feeling that it’s safe to move away from him and toward the Democrats. That will be merely a first impression, of course, yet in this case the initial impression on this key question may be more important than whatever substantive wrangling follows across three scheduled debates. Why? Because Mr. Trump is trying to do something no president in modern history has ever attempted: win re-election when his job-approval in the venerable Gallup poll has never been above 50%. A stunning 44% of Americans said in the most recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll that they have “very negative” feelings toward him personally. Clearly, a lot of Americans don’t particularly like the president, and many decided long ago they simply won’t vote for him. Yet, Mr. Trump also proved in 2016 that there also are plenty of other voters who may not like him personally, yet they will vote for him anyway, particularly if they think the alternative is worse. Mr. Biden’s mission is to convince such voters that he is a safe alternative—that he has the strength and mental acuity at age 77 to take on the presidency, and that he is in control of a Democratic Party moving to the left, not the other way around. The Trump campaign is busy sowing doubts on those fronts. The first debate is Mr. Biden’s best chance to erase them. The classic example of this dynamic came in 1980. By this point in 1980, Jimmy Carter was an unpopular president seen by many as not quite up to the job—or at least as not the right man for a tough job at a turbulent moment in history. His Gallup job-approval rating stood at 37% in mid-September.
“Trump campaign returns to economy with 8-figure ad buy, calls it ‘defining issue in this race’” by Fox News’ Brooke Singman – The Trump campaign is set to release a mid-eight-figure ad buy Tuesday touting the economy during President Trump’s first term after a recent emphasis on “law and order” messaging, saying the economy is the “defining issue” of the 2020 presidential race, Fox News has learned. A senior Trump campaign official told Fox News that the buy, worth more than $10 million, is an increase to the campaign’s existing television ad buy by more than 50%. The official told Fox News that the new round of ads will include one national cable buy, as well as local broadcast buys in eight key early voting states, adding a new ad presence in Arizona and Pennsylvania, while continuing ads in North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The buy also includes the second congressional district in Nebraska, and the second congressional district in Maine, according to the official. The new ad buys in Arizona and Pennsylvania come just ahead of early voting in the states – with voters in Arizona beginning early voting on Oct. 7, and those in Pennsylvania on Oct. 19. The campaign is also expanding their urban radio efforts, and adding Pennsylvania to their existing radio presence. “This week’s advertising continues our strategic plan to follow the dates on the calendar, the states that are voting early, the data that always guides our decision-making and our pathway to 270,” Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien told Fox News. But the content of the new ads will shift from the message of recent ad buys – painting the president as the “law and order” candidate – and resume its pitch of a strong economy under Trump. “We believe the economy, and who is best to handle the economy, is going to be the defining issue in this race,” the official said. “Voters know that President Trump built the world’s best economy once, and he’s already doing it a second time.”
“Biden proposes $5 trillion in new spending, undaunted by Trump’s massive deficits” by CNN’s Tami Luhby – The nation’s deficits and outlays have hit post-World War II highs thanks to tax cuts under President Donald Trump, but Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is proposing adding to that, at least in the near term, with a $5.4 trillion spending plan. The former vice president’s proposals include new investment in universal pre-K, tuition-free community college classes and clean energy — a slate that reflects priorities that emerged across the field in the Democratic primary. Though Biden’s proposals are far smaller than those offered by his progressive former rivals for the nomination, Sens. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, they still amount to the largest policy package in decades, according to an analysis released Monday by the Penn Wharton Budget Model.
It is more than twice the size of Hillary Clinton’s plan in 2016, though that doesn’t account for inflation or the pandemic. Penn Wharton found that Biden’s platform would raise $3.4 trillion in new tax revenue between fiscal 2021 and 2030 while increasing spending by $5.4 trillion. Almost 80% of the increase in taxes would hit the top 1% of earners. This would increase the federal debt by 0.1% and shrink the economy by 0.4% in 2030, after taking into account macroeconomics and Americans’ improved health effects. By 2050, however, the federal debt would fall by 6.1%, while the economy would increase by 0.8%. This is partly because some of Biden’s spending proposals ramp down after the first decade and partly because his package would increase worker productivity. Biden calls for spending $1.9 trillion on education over the decade, including universal pre-K, increased funding for schools with many low-income students and two years of tuition-free community college. He would shell out $1.6 trillion for infrastructure and research and development, including on water, high-speed rail and municipal transit and on clean energy and artificial intelligence.
“Biden Budget to Result in Highest Spending in Decades, Study Finds” by WSJ’s Jacob M. Schlesinger and Eliza Collins – Joe Biden won the Democratic presidential nomination running as a moderate, rejecting the big-government plans of progressive rivals as unaffordable. In the general election campaign, he has rolled out his own multitrillion-dollar platform that a new study finds would push long-term Washington spending to its highest level in decades. The former vice president has proposed a total of $5.4 trillion in new spending over the next 10 years, according to an analysis published Monday by the Penn Wharton Budget Model, a nonpartisan group at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. That includes historically high allocations for sectors from education and health to child care and housing. Mr. Biden’s proposed budget is more than double that of Hillary Clinton, the 2016 Democratic nominee. It is a fraction of the $30 trillion to $50 trillion spending plans that progressive Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren laid out during the Democratic primary. But since effectively sealing the nomination in March, Mr. Biden’s plan has grown in response to the pandemic, the lockdowns, and the resulting recession. The plan also reflects a nod to Mr. Sanders, who has prodded Mr. Biden to move closer to his agenda to help solidify the support of the progressive wing. “I’ve talked to Joe on a number of occasions and I think he recognizes the suffering that is taking place out there right now,” says Mr. Sanders. “I believe he is prepared to respond to that pain once he’s elected president.” If enacted, the Biden budget would elevate federal spending to 24% of gross domestic product by 2030, according to the Wharton study. Outside the two big crisis-driven spending spikes—the budgets swollen by the 2009 financial crisis and the 2020 pandemic—that would be the biggest federal budget going back more than half a century, according to Wharton.
President Donald Trump @realDonaldTrump–According to press reports, Iran may be planning an assassination, or other attack, against the United States in retaliation for the killing of terrorist leader Soleimani, which was carried out for his planning a future attack, murdering U.S. Troops, and the death & suffering…
Alyssa Milano @Alyssa_Milano–As @realdonaldtrump ignores the deadly fires devastating the west coast, it’s important to remember he’s actively contributing to the climate crisis. @JoeBiden has a plan to combat climate chan