The RBG Effort
The make-up of the 2020 presidential election has changed overnight with the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg this past weekend.
It appears as if the Republican effort to replace the late-justice before the election has all-but consumed Democrats, and all hands are on deck to prevent a Senate confirmation vote on President Trump’s expected nominee.
That nominee will be a woman and will be announced sometime this week, per the president.
Twitter exploded over the weekend after Republicans asserted that they would replace Ginsburg. The threat of riots, vandalism, and continued unrest is not just being floated on social media but is being promised. This is good news for Republicans considering that the whole “Defund Police” movement and the rioting that has taken place over the past several months have boosted their chances of reelecting President Trump.
In other words, rioting and calls of Socialist unrest equal a campaign win across the board in November. READ MORE
If Trump does not pick a woman to replace Ginsburg, will he pick this Conservative stalwart…? READ MORE
Sen. Rick Scott wants pushe for a new nominee…READ MORE
What about Joe?
VP Joe Biden has a list of replacements for Ginsburg, but for whatever reason, says he will not release it until after the November election, further fueling the thought that his list would include very left-leaning jurists. READ MORE
US Rep Kathy Castor @USRepKCastor–Millions of Americans would lose protections for their preexisting conditions if Trump (and FL’s @GovRonDeSantis and @AGAshleyMood) prevail in their lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act In a Supreme Court Without Ginsburg
Rick Scott @SenRickScott –The @UN’s dangerous refusal to restore sanctions on Iran is naive and risky for the world. We have seen their relentless pursuit of nuclear weapons. We should not dismiss or ignore it.
Rep Frederica Wilson @RepWilson– I am deeply saddened by the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. We have lost a true icon.
Rep. Lois Frankel @RepLoisFrankel–It’s with the heaviest heart that I have learned of the passing of a true icon of the women’s rights movement, and an ardent defender of equality for all, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. My heart goes out to her family. May her memory be for a blessing.
Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell @RepDMP–“My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” – Justice Ginsburg It speaks volumes to her passion for justice and our democracy that her dying wish was to not be replaced until a new president is installed.
Congressman Charlie Crist @RepCharlieCrist –Devastated to hear of the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She was an American icon and pillar of justice, and we mourn her loss while celebrating the monumental legacy she leaves behind. May her fighting spirit inspire all of us to keep moving forward.
Rep. Ted Deutch @RepTedDeutch–On Rosh Hashanah, I reflected a lot on last night’s loss. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a champion for women. The rewards of equality that she brought to our society benefit our daughters and our sons and point us toward greater equality. That must be our pursuit – together.
“Mucarsel-Powell defends “very partisan” Democrat voting record” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – One of the most widely watched congressional “Toss-up” races in the country is the contest between Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D) and Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez (R) in Florida’s 26st District, a race that many politicos believe will be decided along partisan political lines. Rep. Mucarsel-Powell won her congressional race in 2018 against then-Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R) by running a very centrist campaign, where she narrowly beat the sitting member of Congress by 1 percentage point. Since being sworn into office, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and Republican operatives have been painting Mucarsel-Powell as a far-left legislator that has voting in line with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the now-infamous “Squad” that is comprised of Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib. Mucarsel-Powell was recently questioned about that very same voting allegation made against her on the popular Local 10 Sunday morning show “This Week in South Florida” hosted by Veteran political reporters Michael Putney and Glenna Milberg. The freshman congresswoman reiterated that the allegations were “completely false” and qualified her defense by stating that she has worked with Republican members of Congress like Reps. Francis Rooney and Brian Mast, who she said worked with her on legislation to protect coral reefs and support Everglades restoration.
“Gruters, Ziegler say Democrats “Enabling these Defund Police Rioters”” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – After Florida Senator Rick Scott (R) took to the Senate Floor this past week to condemn Democrats for ushering in “darkness” in America, Florida Republicans continue to denounce democrats, arguing that they are “enabling rioters and anti-police” rhetoric across the country. In an interview with The Floridian, Senator Joe Gruters (R), the Chairman of the Florida Republican Party, and Vice-Chairman of the Florida GOP and County Commissioner Christian Ziegler (R) slammed Democrats for what they believe is a mismanagement of the recent riots that have spread throughout the United States. Citing the lack of “safety and security with these left leaning mayors across the country allowing the riots and this nonsense to go on,” Gruters said that “it’s an eye opener for average everyday Americans because if everybody wants safety and security in their communities at their homes and the course that’s I think driving this movement in the trend towards the president.” When asked why Democrats haven’t denounced the riots, Gruters simply said that “it’s all leadership at the top” and that Democrats were “taking their orders from Joe Biden.” Ziegler instead directed attention to specific lawmakers, questioning, “what does it say about them that they refuse to denounce the violence?” He noted, “the elected officials, the Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s, the Ted Deutch’s, even the state officials – refuse to denounce violence and refused to denounce that there’s a group that wants to defund police.” In turn, Ziegler asserted that this is the reason why Democrats can’t assume control of the White House in the upcoming election.
“Sprowls warns of a Biden presidency, confident Trump will win” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – With a recent FAU poll indicating that President Donald Trump (R) and former Vice President Joe Biden (D) are virtually tied, the idea of a Biden presidency is not out of the realm of possibility. And, Republicans have to prepare themselves in the event that the November elections does not end in their favor. Incoming Speaker of the Florida House, Rep. Chris Sprowls (R), discussed the possibility of a Biden administration with The Floridian, outlining whether or not that’s a viable path that American voters should set the United States on. Specifically, Sprowls warned that a Biden presidency would be detrimental to the United States, arguing that “the reason we’re having this success we have is that” is because of President Trump. “The reality is, prior to tax reform, Floridians were subsidizing high tax states in the way of income tax,” Sprowls said, adding that “that large subsidy went away, and the president has made Florida a priority.” In turn, “if he doesn’t win reelection, that priority goes away.” When asked what a Biden presidency would look like for both the country and the sunshine state, Sprowls admitted, “I don’t want to think what that would look like.” The comments come at a time when the Trump campaign has actively been campaigning in the sunshine state, a state that the president won in the 2016 election but a state considered a swing state nonetheless. However, when pressed on what a Biden presidency would mean for Florida’s future, Sprowls maintained a positive outlook, expressing that “it doesn’t matter because we’re going to win.”
“Rick Scott pushes for vote of Trump’s SCOTUS nominee” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – Moments after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg was announced, the scramble for political positioning in the Senate over her replacement began, as it is suspected that President Trump will decide on his nominee in the come week or two. Regardless of whether President Trump wins re-election, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) has said that his chamber would allow Trump’s nominee to receive a vote on the floor of the Senate. This is going to happen. Trump will nominate someone to the high court. “Once again, we will keep our promise,” he said. “President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate.” Florida Senator Rick Scott (R) stated that its “irresponsible” to allow for Ginsburg’s seat to left vacant and that he supports an up or down vote for whoever the president picks to replace Justice Ginsburg. “It would be irresponsible to allow an extended vacancy on the Supreme Court. I believe that President Trump’s nominee should get a vote in the U.S. Senate.” Florida’s other Republican senator, Marco Rubio, took a less political approach of responding to the news of the Ginsburgs’ death, focusing on the late jurist’s past accomplishments and impact on the country, rather than focusing on her replacement. “Even though I disagreed with many of Justice Ginsburg’s decisions on the court, I have never doubted her historic impact on the court and our nation,” Rubio said. “Her time as a jurist was defined by her passionate commitment to justice and her first rate intellect. Her life story inspired millions of American women and girls to accept no limits to their dreams. And her famous friendship with the late Justice Scalia serves as a reminder to all of us that Americans with dramatically different views can share a genuine friendship that transcends politics. Jeanette and I have Justice Ginsburg’s family in our prayers. May she Rest In Peace.”
“Trump’s picking of Ted Cruz to replace Ginsberg opens door for Allen West” by The Floridian’s Javier Manjarres – With the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the race to replace the vacancy her death has created is now the issue that will dominate the 2020 presidential election. President Donald Trump has already announced a list of potential replacements for any future vacancies on the court, including some very qualified jurists, and two Conservative members of the U.S. Senate, Sens. Tom Cotton (R) and Ted Cruz (R). Conservatives around the nation would love to see a hardcore conservative be tapped to replace Ginsburg, so the fact that Sens. Cotton and Cruz are on Trump’s shortlist of candidates is political music to Republican ears and a drum roll of doom and gloom for Democrats. If President Trump picks Cruz to be his nominee, the political implications would be massive. Remember, Cruz was Solicitor General of Texas and argued before the Supreme Court, and served as Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist’s law clerk. During Trump’s Minnesota rally Friday night, the president joked about Democrats confirming him just to get him out of the Senate. “Ted is the only guy I know who could get 100 votes from the Senate,” said Trump. “They’ll do anything to get him out of the Senate.” Cruz, whose Conservative, pro-Life bona fides are beyond reproach and would cement a fifth and deciding vote on the court, would be nothing less than a doomsday scenario come true for Democrats and pro-Choice Progressives around the world.
“U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dies at 87” by The Floridian’s Mona Salama – Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died at 87, the Supreme Court announced in a statement Friday night. The liberal Justice dubbed R.B.G died of complications from metastatic pancreatic cancer. “Our nation has lost a justice of historic stature,” Chief Justice John Roberts said. “We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her, a tired and resolute champion of justice.” In July, Ginsburg announced that she was undergoing chemotherapy treatment for lesions on her liver, the latest of one of her five battles with cancer. Just days before her death, according to NPR, Ginsburg dictated this statement to her granddaughter Clara Spera: “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” Ginsburg was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1980 by former President Carter nominated and served until 1993. From there, former President Clinton nominated her to the Supreme Court where she served for 27 years as the most senior member of the court’s liberal wing. She became the second female justice to sit on the nation’s highest court joining Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and went on to become its longest-serving woman in history. She also became the first female Jewish justice.
“Scott Warns Far Left Ushering in “Darkness” in America” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – Florida Senator Rick Scott (R) took to the Senate floor to speak on his support of law enforcement, which comes at a time when he’s also published an op-ed in support of law enforcement officers while also condemning rioters that have taken to the streets in recent months. In the Fox News op-ed, the former Florida Governor cited a recent shooting involving two law enforcement officers, saying that he is mad when he hears rioters chanting “we hope they die” in response to the officers being shot in Los Angeles over the weekend. Scott asserted, “I want all communities to. Be safe,” warning that “defunding the police will not make a single community safer.” Calling it “a ludicrous proposal,” he admitted that his “plan is to fight to save our country.” In calling for support to his cause from his colleagues, Scott noted that “we all have a responsibility to do our part to preserve what Reagan called ‘this last and greatest bastion of freedom.’” In his Senate Speech, the Florida lawmaker shared the same sentiments, arguing that “the left has worked hard over the last 50 years to discredit the values of America.” “What if our country turned the keys over to the far left and turned away from capitalism in favor of socialism?” Scott questioned. The answer? “Darkness.”
“Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signs bills on license plates, shark finning” by CBS Miami – Floridians will get a chance to buy new specialty license plates, including three for out-of-state universities, while efforts to prevent shark “finning” got a boost Friday, as Gov. Ron DeSantis signed 14 bills into law. DeSantis also vetoed a measure (HB 789) that would have imposed a $1 fee for people with developmental disabilities who chose to have the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles put the letter “D” on identification cards. He signed a related bill (HB 787) that authorized putting the letter “D” on the cards. “I believe making this option available to our fellow Floridians with developmental disabilities is good public policy,” DeSantis wrote in explaining the veto. “However, imposing an additional fee could unnecessarily discourage a number of eligible Floridians from choosing this service designed to increase awareness and promote greater inclusion and participation in the community.” Valerie Breen, executive director of the Florida Developmental Disabilities Council, said her group had mixed feelings about the legislation. While supportive of allowing people to identify themselves as having disabilities, Breen said a worry was that it could put a stigma on the population of people with disabilities. The measures acted on Friday were the last of 206 bills, including a new state budget (HB 5001), that reached DeSantis from the 2020 legislative session, which ended March 19. DeSantis vetoed five measures, including deciding last week to reject a controversial proposal (SB 810) that would have banned the sale of nearly all flavored electronic-cigarette products and raised the state’s smoking age from 18 to 21.
“Florida’s 6th Congressional District” by News4Jax – U.S. Rep. Mike Waltz, who drew no Republican opponent in the primary, will face Democrat Clint Curtis, an attorney from DeLand who won his Democratic primary, in the general election. Scroll down to read each candidate’s responses to News4Jax’s questionnaire, presented verbatim as submitted. Clint Curtis
Party affiliation: Democratic; Age: 62 in August; Candidate’s family: wife; Occupation: Government Corruption Attorney; Education: Doctorate (law); Political experience: ran before in 2006 against Tom Feeney; What do you see as the top three issues in this race? Restoring America’s Values, Ending government corruption, fraud, waste and lack of accountability. Ending poverty among senior citizens; How can you help voters in a way that others running for this office cannot? Having been both a NASA programmer, a whistleblower and an attorney; I have an excellent grasp of the inequities in the system and the ways to correct them; What would you hope to be remembered for accomplishing after serving in this office? I would like to be remembered as finally making elections fair and verifiable where every voter can be sure their vote was actually counted correctly. I would like to be remembered as a person who ended poverty among our senior citizens and who was willing to standup to make everyone’s life better.
“Florida Republicans: Nominating Lagoa could clinch state for Trump” by Politico’s Gary Fineout, Marc Caputo and Matt Dixon – Leading Florida Republican politicians are launching an all-out effort to convince President Donald Trump to nominate federal Judge Barbara Lagoa to the U.S. Supreme Court — a move they say would boost his reelection chances in the must-win swing state. The biggest names in the Florida GOP are working behind the scenes to advocate for Lagoa: U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott have sprung into action, along with Gov. Ron DeSantis, Rep. Matt Gaetz, Florida campaign director Susie Wiles and the president’s former impeachment defense lawyer, former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, according to interviews with a dozen Republicans familiar with the effort. The Republicans are said to be making the case that the longtime judge and devout Catholic has the legal chops to do the job and the conservative background to appease the GOP base, these people said. But it’s Lagoa’s background as a Florida Cuban-American that could have the most salience for Trump. His reelection hinges on the too-close-to-call battleground state, where his campaign has made outreach to Hispanic voters a top issue, worrying some Democrats. “If the president picks Barbara Lagoa, they will be dancing salsa with joy in Hialeah well past November,” said Gaetz, referring to Lagoa’s home town, a blue-collar majority Cuban-American city that borders Miami and leans Republican. Lagoa, a 52-year-old Columbia Law School graduate and mother of three children, emerged this weekend as a leading contender to take the Supreme Court seat held by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the liberal stalwart who died Friday at the age of 87.
“Presidential polls: Close battles in Texas, Florida” by Politico’s Daivd Cohen – Florida and Texas remain tight battlegrounds in the presidential election, according to CBS News Battleground Tracker polls released Sunday. The current margin in both states is 2 percentage points, with Democratic nominee Joe Biden up by 2 in Florida and President Donald Trump up by 2 in Texas. Trump won both states in 2016; no Democratic presidential candidate has won Texas since Jimmy Carter in 1976. In both cases, the leads were within the margins of error for the polls (3.7 points in Florida, 3.5 points in Texas). The polls were conducted by YouGov from Sept. 15-18 of 1,220 registered voters in Florida and 1,161 in Texas. The Texas poll showed an unexpectedly close Senate race, with Republican Sen. John Cornyn ahead of Democratic challenger Mary “MJ“ Hegar by a mere 5 points, 46 to 41. That seat has not been high on the lists of ones most likely to flip. Also Sunday, an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed Biden ahead of Trump nationally by a margin of 51 percent to 43 percent. In 12 battleground states — including Florida but not Texas — Biden’s lead was 51 to 45. Besides Florida, the other swing states were Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. The NBC/WSJ poll had Biden with 90 percent support among Black voters, 57 percent support among women, and 54 support among whites with college degrees. Trump‘s strongest groups were whites without college degrees (59 percent), white voters (52 percent), and men (50 percent). The NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll was conducted Sept. 13-16 of 1,000 registered voters, and the overall margin of error is plus-minus 3.1 percentage points.
“FL AG Moody Wins From RJ Reynolds Tobacco Co Securing $90 Million for Florida and Millions More in Annual Payments” by STL News – Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody Friday won a major court battle against big tobacco, securing millions for the state of Florida. The victory brings an end to years of litigation against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company over millions of dollars owed to the state through Florida’s landmark tobacco settlement agreement. Pursuant to that agreement, RJR and the other major tobacco companies agreed to make annual payments to Florida of several hundred million dollars in perpetuity. The annual payments compensate Florida for the past and future public health care expenses from its citizens’ consumption of the settling defendants’ cigarettes. After RJR sold several of its most iconic cigarette brands, it ceased making mandatory payments to the state for the billions of cigarettes sold under those brands every year. Today’s decision by Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal to deny RJR’s requests for rehearing and certification effectively ends the legal battle and secures a one-time $92 million payment to the state, as well as an estimated $30 million annually for cigarettes sold under the four brands in question. Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “This monumental decision comes at an extremely vital time for our state as the coronavirus has taken a toll on Florida’s revenues. I am thrilled with the Fourth DCA’s decision and glad our talented team of attorneys were able to ensure monies due to the state of Florida will be paid in full and the defendants cannot shirk their responsibilities.” In 2016, RJR sold three of its most iconic cigarette brands, Winston, Kool and Salem, along with a legacy Lorillard Tobacco Company brand, Maverick, to ITG for $7 billion. These four brands accounted for approximately 17 billion cigarettes sold in 2016, eight percent of the domestic tobacco market. RJR refused to include the sales of these cigarette brands when making annual payments to Florida, despite not having been released from its payment obligations. The exact same cigarette brands continue to be sold to Floridians, thus imposing the very public health care expenditures that the settlement payments are intended to compensate.
“Past scams complicate Miami-Dade County’s contact tracing efforts” by CNN’s Dakin Andone and Melissa Alonso – A history of a scams and fraud in the Miami-Dade County area is haunting Covid-19 contact tracing efforts, according to local officials. “Please do not hang up on contact tracers from the health department,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said in a news conference Wednesday. “We’re getting indications that a lot of people are not answering the questions, they’re not responding to the contact tracers.” “The biggest fear is mistrust,” Yesenia Villalta, the administrator of the Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade County said. “They feel that it could be a scam, so that’s the biggest factor that we are seeing in terms of not participating in the contact tracing process.” Contact tracing is seen as a crucial pillar in the fight against Covid-19, one that goes hand in hand with testing. It involves reaching out to people who had contact with someone who has been recently diagnosed with Covid-19 so the contact can get tested, quarantine themselves and prevent further spread. But residents of Miami-Dade are skeptical about calls from unfamiliar parties — and not without good reason. The area has been home to several identity theft rings, phishing scams and fraudsters over the years, according to past CNN reporting. In 2019, Florida ranked second nationwide for the number of fraud reports per capita, with nearly 178,000 total reports of fraud and $89.6 million in total losses, according to a report from the Federal Trade Commission. The Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach metropolitan area ranked third nationwide. Identity theft and imposter scams were the two most common types of fraud reported in the state, per the report
“Biden condemns push to fast track Supreme Court confirmation as ‘exercise in raw political power’” by Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser and Allie Raffa – Joe Biden on Sunday made a personal appeal to the handful of Senate Republicans who will determine if President Trump’s pending Supreme Court nominee will go forward, while framing the titanic battle over the high court opening as a referendum on saving health care coverage for tens of millions of Americans amid the worst pandemic in over a century. he former vice president – speaking at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia on Sunday in his first address since Friday night’s passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg – warned that if the president and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., go ahead with their push to confirm a successor to Ginsburg with less than 7 weeks to go until the Nov. 3 election, “it would cause irreversible damage.” “The last thing we need is to add a constitutional crisis that plunges us deeper into the abyss – deeper into the darkness,” he stressed. And he called the move by the president and the Senate Majority Leader an “exercise in raw political power.” Pointing to McConnell’s refusal to hold a hearing for President Obama’s nominee four years ago, after Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died just nine months before the last presidential election, Biden argued that “having made this their standard when it served their interest, they cannot, just four years later, change course when it doesn’t serve their ends.” Biden also pushed back on repeated calls by the president, the Trump campaign, and allies, to release a list of his own potential nominees. Breaking with precedent, then-GOP presidential candidate Trump in 2016 released a list of conservative potential high court nominees. Earlier this month, the president added another 20 names to his list.
“Pelosi says she will not leverage government shutdown to avoid Senate vote on court seat” by CNN’s Nicky Robertson – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday said she would not leverage a government shut down in order to slow down Republicans’ push to fill the Supreme Court vacancy following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. “None of us has any interest in shutting down government, that has such a harmful and shameful impact on so many people in our country,” Pelosi told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on “This Week.” Asked if there was any way the Democrats could slow down Senate Republicans, Pelosi said Sunday, “Everyone to get out there and vote.” And pressed again on what Democrats may do, the House speaker said: “We have our options. We have arrows in our quiver that I’m not about to discuss right now.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump, less than 24 hours following the 87-year-old justice’s death, were engaged in a pressure campaign to hold the Republican conference together and push a nominee through the Senate Judiciary Committee and to a full Senate vote before the end of the year. Democrats, meanwhile, began discussing their options Saturday, with senators all vowing a furious fight to keep the seat vacant until next year when a new Senate convenes and when Joe Biden may occupy the White House. While no specific course of action was detailed, Democrats said they planned to engage in an all-out battle to stop the nomination in its tracks by pressuring four Republicans to break ranks.
On Sunday, Pelosi said Trump is pushing to fill Ginsburg’s seat so quickly because Supreme Court oral arguments on the Affordable Care Act begin on November 10.
“How Biden Might Alter Tax Rules, From Nonprofits to Opportunity Zones” by WSJ’s Richard Rubin – Trump administration tax rules for investment in low-income communities, politically active nonprofit groups and multinational corporations could be reversed or changed under a Joe Biden presidency, as Democrats eye the use of executive-branch power in the Treasury Department. On tax policy, Mr. Biden’s campaign has proposed trillions of dollars in tax increases on corporations and high-income individuals. Those legislative changes are stronger and more durable than executive actions, but getting laws through Congress can be slow—or nearly impossible if Republicans retain control of the Senate. That means any new administration will face the same pressure as current and past ones, to do whatever it can on its own. “There’s going to be no shortage of problems to address,” said Mark Mazur, the department’s top tax-policy official during the Obama administration. Under President Trump, the Treasury has been churning out tax regulations and guidance, largely to implement the 2017 tax law that passed without any Democratic votes. That has required thousands of decisions by political appointees and career officials, many in favor of taxpayers and some resisting taxpayers’ requests. Most can be reversed, but significant ones require a lengthy process of seeking and incorporating public comments. The Biden campaign hasn’t said much, but its already-stated priorities are an indication of what a Biden administration would emphasize with executive-branch power. “One should expect a quick and serious ramping up of tax compliance targeted at tax evasion by very well-off individuals and multinational companies using questionable international tax strategies,” said Gene Sperling, a veteran of Democratic administrations and an informal adviser to the Biden campaign.
“Trump takes swipe at Murkowski after she opposes Senate taking up SCOTUS confirmation” by Fox News’ Daniella Genovese – President Trump hit back at Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Twitter Sunday after she became the second Republican senator to oppose a swift move to fill the vacant Supreme Court seat following the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Trump eyed a tweet earlier Sunday morning from the Alaska Chamber which promoted an event slated for next week featuring Murkowski. Trump retweeted the post alongside the comment: “No thanks!” Murkowski followed the lead of Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who came out in opposition of filling the vacant Supreme Court seat before the Nov. 3 election just after Ginsburg’s passing. In a statement, Murkowski said “for weeks, I have stated that I would not support taking up” a potential nomination as the presidential election neared. “Sadly, what was then a hypothetical is now our reality, but my position has not changed.” She added: “I did not support taking up a nomination eight months before the 2016 election to fill the vacancy created by the passing of Justice Scalia.” Now, “we are now even closer to the 2020 election — less than two months out — and I believe the same standard must apply,” she said. Murkowski and Collins have said replacing Ginsburg should be the decision of the election winner — Trump or Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Murkowski’s comments come just after Ginsburg– deemed a towering women’s rights champion who became the court’s second female justice — passed away Friday from complications surrounding metastatic pancreatic cancer at 87 years old. During her final years on the bench, Ginsburg was seen as the unquestioned leader of the court’s liberal wing. Trump called Ginsburg a “titan of the law” who “inspired all Americans.” After her passing, however, he began pushing the Republican-controlled Senate to consider the pick without delay.
“Woman suspected of sending poisoned letter to Trump arrested” by CNN’s Evan Perez – A woman suspected of sending a letter containing the poison ricin to President Donald Trump was arrested as she tried to enter the US from Canada at a border crossing in New York state, a US law enforcement official said. The woman was carrying a gun and arrested by US authorities, according to the law enforcement official. US prosecutors in Washington, DC, are expected to bring charges against her. CNN previously reported that law enforcement had intercepted a ricin package sent to Trump last week, according to two law enforcement officials, and that investigators were looking into the possibility that it came from Canada. A person familiar with the investigation told CNN’s Josh Campbell the letter was mailed from St. Hubert, Quebec, and contained a granular substance with similar physical characteristics to ground castor beans. Two tests had been done to confirm the presence of ricin. All mail for the White House is sorted and screened at an offsite facility before reaching the White House. A spokesperson for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, which confirmed Saturday that it was working with the FBI to investigate the matter, told CNN Sunday that “the RCMP is still not in a position to issue a statement, or to confirm/deny any reports on arrests.” A spokeswoman from the FBI Washington Field Office confirmed later Sunday that an arrest was made and that the investigation remains ongoing. In a statement provided to CNN on Saturday, the FBI’s Washington field office said that “the FBI and our U.S. Secret Service and U.S. Postal Inspection Service partners are investigating a suspicious letter received at a U.S. government mail facility. At this time, there is no known threat to public safety.” Authorities are investigating additional similar packages mailed to addresses in Texas that may be connected to the same sender in Canada, CNN previously reported, according to a US law enforcement official.
“Amy Coney Barrett Is Again a Top Contender for Supreme Court Nomination” by WSJ’s Brent Kendall – From the moment President Trump selected Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court in 2018, Judge Amy Coney Barrett became a front-runner for any future high court vacancy that might arise during his presidency. Judge Barrett, 48, a member of the Chicago-based Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals since 2017, has a reputation for possessing a first-rate legal mind and solidly conservative views. “She’s very highly respected,” Mr. Trump said Saturday. The president said he planned to choose a woman to fill the seat vacated by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday at the age of 87, and Judge Barrett is at the center of the conversation. The president indicated he will review other candidates as well, including Judge Barbara Lagoa, a federal appellate judge who previously served on the Florida Supreme Court, the first Cuban-American to do so. A finalist when Mr. Trump chose Justice Kavanaugh, Judge Barrett interviewed with the president in 2018 and impressed him and his advisers. But she also had been on the appellate bench less than a year after 15 years teaching law. That short experience, and the prospect that she could spark a particularly bitter confirmation fight over abortion rights in a closely divided Senate, were among the factors the White House considered at the time, The Wall Street Journal reported. A Notre Dame Law School graduate, Judge Barrett was a law clerk to Justice Antonin Scalia and then spent three years in private practice before returning to Notre Dame to launch her academic career, where she still teaches. Judge Barrett has written and spoken favorably of the conservative Justice Scalia, who died in 2016, and his close attention to the texts of statutes as written and support for originalism, or interpreting the Constitution according to its original meaning.
“Biden enters final stretch with huge cash advantage over Trump” by Paul Steinhauser and Allie Raffa – Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden holds a large financial advantage over President Trump as the race for the White House enters its final weeks. The former vice president’s campaign reported on Sunday that it and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) began September with $466 million in the bank – roughly $141 million more than the cash on hand for the president and the Republican National Committee (RNC). Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh tweeted on Friday that the president’s re-election team and the RNC had $325 million in their coffers at the beginning of the month. The large financial advantage for Biden is a dramatic turnaround from the early spring when Trump enjoyed a massive lead over the former vice president when it came to cash on hand. Biden, who declared his candidacy in April of last year, struggled to fundraise for much of his campaign. He raised just $8.9 million in January and $18 million in February. The president has been raising money for his reelection bid since entering the White House more than three and a half years ago. And the reelection effort’s hauled in an unprecedented $1.2 billion the past two years. But Biden saw his fundraising spike starting in the late winter and early spring, as he became the clear front-runner for the Democratic nomination and much of the party coalesced around his White House bid. Biden became the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee in April as his last remaining primary rival – Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont – dropped out of the race and backed the former vice president.
“Trump remains the underdog as campaign enters final six-week stretch” by CNN’s David Chalian – This year has felt anything but stable in most aspects of American life, but the presidential campaign of 2020 has been bucking that dynamic and has proven to be remarkably stable for the last several months. There have certainly been several jolts in the race since our last electoral college outlook, even before the death of Associate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Friday night. From former Vice President Joe Biden’s historic pick of Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate to the largely virtual party conventions, from the shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and the continued protests for racial justice to the deadly violence that emerged, from the bombshell revelations in Bob Woodward’s new book to a President and administration at public odds with its top scientists in the midst of a pandemic. None of it seemed to dramatically alter the fundamental position the candidates find themselves in. President Donald Trump enters the final six weeks of the election season as the underdog as Joe Biden maintains his edge both nationally and in many of the critical battleground states that will determine the outcome and as he completely erased the fundraising advantage that the incumbent had amassed earlier this year. Ginsburg’s death and the immediate supercharged political fight over her successor are the latest shock to the campaign environment, and we now wait to see if that has a real impact on the structure of the battle between Trump and Biden, which to this point, has shaped up to be a referendum on the President’s first term in office — particularly his handling of the coronavirus.
“Michigan Judge Extends Mail-In Ballot Deadline” by WSJ’s Alexa Corse – A Michigan judge extended the state’s deadline for receiving mail-in ballots, a move likely to reduce the number of ballots rejected for lateness but which could delay results in some races in the battleground state. Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens on Friday ordered that ballots postmarked by the day before Election Day be eligible to be counted if they are received within 14 days after the election. Normally, the state requires mail-in ballots to be returned by 8 p.m. on Election Day. The judge cited concerns about mail delays. “In light of delays attributable to the Covid-19 pandemic, mail delivery has become significantly compromised,” she wrote. Democrats have raised concerns about postal delays, and congressional Democrats have taken aim at Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a former logistics-company executive and GOP fundraiser. Mr. DeJoy has made recent changes at the Postal Service that he said were intended to increase efficiency by reducing extra and late mail-transportation trips. The Postal Service says that it has plenty of capacity to deliver ballots but that voters should leave ample time for mailing them. The judge also cleared the way for absentee voters to allow anyone to help return their ballots—but only between 5:01 p.m. on the Friday before the election and the close of polls on Election Day. Michigan ordinarily limits those who may help return ballots to certain groups including local government clerks or immediate family members. Democratic groups applauded the judge’s action. Democrats have sought such changes in many states, saying they would make voting more convenient and safer amid the pandemic.
President Donald Trump @realDonaldTrump–“The Trump Century, How Our President Changed the Course of History Forever”. On sale tomorrow. A great book by an even greater author. Make Lou NUMBER ONE! Much better than the boring, no new info., Woodward book. Besides, Lou is much smarter and sharper than Bob, by a lot!
Nancy Pelosi @SpeakerPelosi–Our Latino community has always been a central part of our American story. This #HispanicHeritageMonth and every month, House Democrats are committed to lifting up our Latino community and opposing the Trump Admin’s campaign of hatred & xenophobia