It’s all Ron DeSantis’ Fault
Florida Democrats are livid at Gov. Ron DeSantis after the state’s voter registration website crashed late Monday afternoon.
It’s not DeSantis’ fault the site failed, but the buck does stop with him, so yeah, Democrats are right to criticize him and blame him for the fiasco.
What’s worse is that the site crashed on the very last day that Floridians were able to register.
House Democrats like Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Debbie Mucarsel-Powell were all over the mishap and have demanded that DeSantis extend the registration by a day.
Fat chance that is going to happen. READ MORE
With President Trump having tested positive for COVID-19, and with DeSantis opening Phase 3 of the reopening, Democrats want ‘Governor D’ to require all Floridians to wear masks. Again, fat chance that is going to happen. READ MORE
Speaking of the president and COVID, Rep. Donna Shalala (R) believes that Americans need to know all the details, a play-by-play of Trump’s medical records because he is president, and HIPAA doesn’t matter because he is the president.
Wait, maybe someone should demand that Rep. Shalala (elected official too) disclose every single medical procedure, doctor visit (findings), and tests like colonoscopies, endoscopies, and other more sensitive tests?
Why stop with Shalala? Let’s demand that Senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, Reps. Stephanie Murphy, Matt Gaetz, Ted Deutch, Darren Soto, Val Demings, Mario Diaz-Balart, Charlie Crist, Neal Dunn, and any other member of Congress I missed, to put out their entire medical record. READ MORE
Marco Rubio @marcorubio–A significant increase in conspiracy theories & outrageous claims since the President’s diagnosis Lies spread much faster than fact checking This is why we need frequent, detailed & transparent updates from @WhiteHouse And why we should all be skeptical of outlandish rumors
Rep. Ted Deutch@RepTedDeutch-The number of cases from the WH Barrett event show importance of following CDC guidance. Large gatherings w/ few masks make it near impossible to contact trace. @GovRonDeSantis should issue a statewide mask order & let counties enforce safety rules to prevent the spread.
Rep. Val Demings @RepValDemings-Let’s not ignore our eyes and ears. The president has encouraged white supremacy and violence, and any suggestions otherwise are dangerous gaslighting.
Rep. Matt Gaetz @RepMattGaetz-The answer to COVID is not to shut down, hide under the bed, and just hope the virus won’t ever find us. We should live our lives, protect the vulnerable, and recognize the critical importance of making progress on therapeutics to become more survivable against COVID-19.
“Wasserman Schultz Rallies Against SCOTUS Confirmation” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – With President Trump (R) and Republican Senators diagnosed with COVID-19, all eyes are on the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Since the announcement that the Senate would be voting on Judge Barrett as soon as possible, Democrats have pushed back, arguing that the Supreme Court confirmation hearing should be delayed until after the 2020 presidential election. Republicans need 51 votes to confirm Judge Barret, but with recent developments of Senators being diagnosed with COVID-19 and a string of new cases that the Supreme Court is set to hear, Democrats argue that those are even more reasons as to why the confirmation hearings should be delayed. One Florida lawmaker that has voiced her opposition to the confirmation hearing is Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D), who took to Twitter this morning to argue that “pre-existing health condition protections, consumer, LGBTQ, voting rights and climate change cases are all on the SCOTUS docket.” Moreover, “the American people deserve a say in how they’re decided,” so she urged her followers to “call your senators and demand” that there be no confirmation before the next. Inauguration next year. The news comes at a time when former Vice President Joe Biden (D) is polling higher than President Trump in the sunshine state, and the President took to Twitter this morning to voice his own support for reforming healthcare while also noting that he supports protecting pre-existing health conditions.
>>> Biden says Trump is responsible for catching COVID- READ MORE
“Florida Democrats, Deutch push for statewide mask mandate” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – In light of President Donald Trump (R), members of his cabinet and some Republican Senators testing positive for COVID-19, Florida lawmakers are now in contention as to whether or not there should be a mask mandate for the country at a time when several states are looking to fully reopen their economies. In response to the COVID-19 diagnosis announcements made after the first presidential election, Florida Rep. Ted Deutch (D) took to Twitter to voice a warning to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R), arguing that “the number of cases from the WH Barrett event show importance of following CDC guidance.” “Large gatherings w/few masks make it near impossible to contact trace,” he added, warning that the Florida Governor “should issue a statewide mask order & let counties enforce safety rules to prevent the spread.” Recently, the Florida Governor not only announced that the state would be completely reopening by heading into phase 3, but Governor Ron DeSantis (R) also announced that the restrictions and limitations on wearing a mask would also be lifted, so Florida residents would no longer be cited for not wearing masks. Although Rep. Deutch is calling for a statewide mask mandate, lawmakers like Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz (R) disagree with the notion. On a recent appearance on FOX News, during an interview with Tucker Carlson, the Florida lawmaker argued that “the answer to COVID is not to shut down, hide under the bed, and just hope the virus won’t ever find us.” Instead, Gaetz expressed that “we should live our lives, protect the vulnerable, and recognize the critical importance of making progress on therapeutics to become more survivable against COVID-19.”
“Biden Polling Higher than Trump in Florida” by The Floridian’s Daniel Molina – In a new Real Clear Politics poll, former Vice President Joe Biden (D) is polling higher than President Donald Trump (R) in the sunshine state, and the numbers come at a time when Vice President Biden is taking a trip to South Florida as President Trump fights the COVID-19 diagnosis that was announced after the first presidential debate. Currently, Vice President Biden is polling at 47.8% compared to President Trump’s 45.8%. Vice President Biden is also leading in the polls when it comes to both Cuban-American and Latino voters in the state, which should trouble the Trump campaign because the sunshine state is a swing state that the President carried in the 2016 presidential election. Moreover, for Trump to win the election, he needs to win the state of Florida and its 29 electoral college votes. Specifically, in Miami-Dade County and Palm Beach County, although Vice President Biden is leading President Trump by a high margin, he is still polling less than Secretary Hillary Clinton (D) did in the 2016 election, which she ended up losing. The Vice President is taking a trip to South Florida to rally support and to also target undecided voters that could sway the election one way or the other. Although President Trump is not able to campaign as he had planned to, he did take to Twitter this morning to highlight some political issues that his campaign is focusing on while also urging Americans to vote.
“Renters in Northwest Florida can apply for FEMA assistance” by WEAR – Renters in Bay, Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties whose homes and property were damaged by Hurricane Sally can apply for federal disaster assistance. FEMA Individual Assistance is available to renters, including students, as well as homeowners. Federal grants can help pay for temporary housing. The initial rental grant is for a 60-day period and can be reviewed for further assistance. The registration deadline is Dec. 1, 2020. Renters may also qualify for a grant under FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance program for essential personal property and other disaster-related expenses. These may include: Replacement or repair of necessary personal property, such as furniture, appliances, clothing, textbooks or school supplies; Replacement or repair of tools and other job-related equipment required by the self-employed; Primary vehicles; Medical and dental bills. Survivors in Bay, Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties can register with FEMA in the following ways: Visit DisasterAssistance.gov; Download the FEMA App; Call 800-621-3362 (800-462-7585 TTY). Multilingual operators are available. The toll-free numbers are open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time. Those who use a relay service such as a videophone, InnoCaption or CapTel should provide FEMA with their specific phone number assigned to that service.
Visit a Mobile Registration Intake Center; The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest disaster loans to help Florida renters repair or replace disaster-damaged personal property, including automobiles. Renters may be eligible for up to $40,000, depending on their losses. The application deadline is Dec. 1, 2020.
“Trump allies tout Florida campaign as ‘well-oiled machine’ as Biden arrives in Miami” by Herald Tribune’s John Kennedy – With Democrat Joe Biden campaigning Monday in Miami, President Donald Trump’s Florida allies described his campaign as operating like a “well-oiled machine” in the state – even as the candidate battles COVID-19. Biden planned stops in Miami’s Little Haiti and Little Havana before taking part in an evening town hall to be broadcast on NBC-TV from the city’s Perez Art Museum, before a socially-distance audience of undecided Florida voters. Monday marked the last day Floridians can register to vote in the Nov. 3 election. The state is the biggest swing state in the race for the White House. But Florida Republican Party Chairman Joe Gruters insisted that the president’s campaign was going strong in the state despite the absence of the candidate. “We are a well-oiled machine here in Florida,” said Gruters, also a state senator from Sarasota. “The RNC, the Trump Victory team and the Republican Party of Florida have been working together in a streamlined manner, really since 2016.” Gruters said campaign staffing in Florida tops that on hand four years ago, while phone calls and door-to-door outreach efforts to voters also is increased. Voter registration has narrowed Florida Republicans’ sizable historic gap with registered Democrats. “We’re absolutely crushing it on the ground,” Gruters said. But for potentially the next two weeks, there will be no campaign appearances from Trump, whose push for a second term seems built around big, mostly maskless outdoor rallies which many public health experts decry as risky amid the pandemic.
“Florida’s COVID-19 increases return to rates seen in early June” by News 4 Jax’s Steve Patrick – Ten days after Gov. Ron DeSantis moved Florida into Phase 3 of reopening — lifting capacity limits on restaurants and other businesses — there has been no detectable increase in the spread of coronavirus in the state. The Department of Health’s report Monday showed an increase of 1,415 cases — the lowest daily increase since June 10 and the fifth time in the last 10 days the state’s caseload has been under 2,000. The state’s rate of positive COVID-19 testing also remains low — 3.93% on Sunday. The state’s positivity rate has been below 5% for 12 days in a row. There were 41 additional deaths in Florida reported on Monday — three of those in Jacksonville, two in Columbia County and one in Clay County. The local deaths ranged from a 54-year-old man to an 87-year-old woman. As the summer coronavirus spike in Sunbelt states subsides, Florida has gone the furthest in lifting restrictions, especially on restaurants where the burden of ensuring safety has shifted to business owners and residents. While that has the concerns of a resurgence, recent data from the Department of Health has not shown an increase in the rate of COVID-19 infections. In some of Florida’s touristy neighborhoods, patrons have since been flocking to bars and restaurants, filling terraces, defying mask orders — drawing mixed reactions from business owners and other customers. “We’re generally concerned that we’re going to find ourselves on the other side of an inverted curve and erasing all the progress we’ve made,” said Albert Garcia, chairman of the Wynwood Business improvement district, which represents 50 blocks of restaurants and bars in Miami’s trendy arts district.
“Florida’s COVID-19 positivity rate remains below 5% for 12th straight day” by Sun Sentinel’s David Fleshler – Florida’s positivity rate for COVID-19 remained low again Monday, in an encouraging sign that could be put to the test as the state continues reopening. The daily rate of new tests coming back positive was 3.93%, well below the threshhold of 5% that experts have set as one of the standards for judging the disease under control. It was the 12th day in a row that the rate was under 5%, and experts have called for two straight weeks below the threshold to meet the standard. This positivity figure reflects only new infections based on COVID-19 testing for the day; it does not count results for people who previously tested positive for the disease. Other tallies show a higher rate depending on the source and method. For example, Johns Hopkins University, which doesn’t exclude repeated results for the same individual, reported Florida’s daily positivity rate to be 9.2%. Florida added 1,415 new cases of COVID-19 and 41 additional deaths Monday, according to reports released by the state Department of Health. The new cases bring the statewide total to 717,874 and the total number of deaths to 14,886. The deaths include 174 non-Florida residents. The number of new cases will be watched particularly closely in the coming weeks to see if infections rise as a result of the state reopening and schools and universities resuming in-person classes.
“Justices to Referee Florida-Georgia Water Fight’s Latest Round” by Bloomberg Law’s Ellen Gilmer – The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in the latest phase of Florida and Georgia’s long-running feud over a shared water basin. The justices issued an order Monday saying they’ll set an argument date “in due course” to resolve the Southeastern states’ most recent dispute over the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-
“Florida’s voter registration site experiences issues hours before deadline” by WTSP’s Josh Sidorowicz – ust hours before the deadline to register to vote in Florida to be eligible to vote in the Nov. 3 presidential election, the state’s registration website began experiencing issues. RegisterToVoteFlorida.
“Explaining Florida Amendment 5: Limitation on Homestead Assessments” by Local 10’s Glenna Milberg – Local 10′s “Amendments 101” series explains each Florida constitutional ballot question on the 2020 ballot, to ultimately help you make an informed decision. This and all constitutional amendments need a supermajority 60% support to pass. Amendment 5: Click here for the full text. Amendment 5 is the first of two on the ballot that has to do with your property taxes — and this one is simply about extending a deadline. First, some background: The taxes on property you actually live in — your home — are capped at 3% a year, with what Florida calls the “homestead” exemption. State law allows you to move a portion of that tax break to a new home. That’s called “portability.” To do so, homeowners must apply for portability within a two-year window, measured from Jan. 1. Amendment 5 would extend that window to three calendar years. The extension would help homeowners who make their moves later in the year. The downside is for the local governments that rely on property taxes for revenue. According to state data analysts, they’d lose just under $2 million next year and an eventual $10 million a year with that extended window.
“FDLE reviewing Florida attorney general’s request for investigation into Bloomberg” by News Service of Florida – State law enforcement officials continue to review Attorney General Ashley Moody’s request to investigate former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg for helping Florida felons pay outstanding legal costs so they could register to vote in November. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement review is the first step toward a potential investigation that Moody, at the behest of Gov. Ron DeSantis, requested on Sept. 23 into Bloomberg raising at least $16 million for the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition. Bloomberg has vowed to pump more than $100 million into Florida to assist Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential bid, and Moody contends the assistance to the coalition could be a violation of laws against offering incentives to people or groups in exchange for voting in a particular manner. “Every case is unique, but in general, we look at documents and information to determine if the complaint is within the purview of FDLE and if it is actionable by FDLE,” Gretl Plessinger, an FDLE spokeswoman, said in an email Monday. “It’s not an investigation at this point, but it could become one. It just depends on what the agents find.” Plessinger said there is no timeline on the investigation. Monday marked the final day Floridians could register to vote in the November election. Moody made a similar request for an investigation to the Tampa office of the FBI. WFSU Radio in Tallahassee reported Monday the FBI declined to comment if an investigation had been opened.
“Florida man gets 40 years for sexual abuse of 6-year-old in Bowie County” by Texarkana Gazette’s Lynn LaRowe – A man who molested a 6-year-old girl last year in Bowie County has been sentenced to 40 years in prison. Jesse Hines, 33, of Cocoa Beach, Florida, pleaded guilty last month to aggravated sexual assault of a child and evading arrest in a vehicle. Hines was sentenced to 40 years on the sexual assault child and 10 for evading. The terms will run concurrently. First Assistant District Attorney Kelley Crisp said Hines must serve at least half of the 40-year term for child sex abuse before he is parole eligible because of the victim’s young age. The charges stem from when Hines was living in his van in front of a home on County Road 3102, where a 6-year-old girl lived. Her family had reportedly given Hines permission to park there. An adult member of the girl’s family reported April 28, 2019, that the child said Hines showed her pornographic videos on his cellphone, masturbated in front of her and sexually assaulted her during the first week of March, according to a probable cause affidavit. The girl’s family was told to call 911 if Hines returned to the area. Bowie County Sheriff’s Office responded to such a call about 9:30 p.m. April 30, 2019. At first, deputies were unable to find Hines after he ran into a wooded area. But shortly after midnight May 1, 2019, Deputy Rob Hadaway saw Hines park his van on the eastbound ramp of Interstate 30 after turning from U.S. Highway 82. The deputy pulled in behind the van and activated his lights, intending to tell Hines to stay away from the area where the girl was living. As Hadaway was giving dispatchers his location, Hines sped away, ultimately stopping after leading the deputy on a one-mile chase.
“Hispanic Nonprofit Registers 30,000 New Florida Voters” by Spectrum 7’s Jesse Canales – Poder LatinX, a Hispanic voting advocacy nonprofit, spent Monday registering voters. “I have the responsibility to make people understand that we need to take action,” Cristal Guzman, the nonprofit’s Osceola lead said. The organization focused on phone banking after the coronavirus to register more Hispanic voters. They were able to register 30,000 new voters in Florida. Guzman said she focused on Osceola County where she and a large portion of Central Florida’s Hispanic population lives. Almost half of the county’s population identifies as Hispanic that’s larger than the state and the national average. Hispanic voters will make up the second largest voting bloc in the 2020 presidential election.
“Amy Coney Barrett confirmation hearing to begin Oct. 12 as Senate ramps up COVID precautions” by Fox News’ Brooke Singman – The Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday formally scheduled the confirmation hearings for President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett, saying that the proceedings will begin on Monday, Oct. 12. Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., announced the formal hearing on Barrett’s nomination, which is set to begin on Monday, Oct. 12, on Capitol Hill and last through Thursday, Oct. 15. Graham’s announcement comes hours ahead of the president’s discharge from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Monday. The president was admitted on Friday after testing positive for the novel coronavirus. The president is continuing to fight COVID-19, but will resume his treatments from the White House, his medical team said Monday. Fox News previously reported that Senate Republicans hoped to begin the hearings on Oct. 12, but Graham made the scheduling official on Monday. A committee aide told Fox News Monday that staff is working with the Architect of the Capitol, Office of the Attending Physician (OAP), the Senate Sergeant at Arms, the Capitol Police, and the Rules Committee to ensure the nomination hearing for Judge Barrett is conducted safely and in accordance with public health recommendations. Committee staff is making sure that there are PPE and sanitary stations, and there will be strict limits on people allowed into the hearing room among other precautions.
“White House press secretary and two aides have tested positive for coronavirus” by CNN’s Betsy Klein – White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany has tested positive for Covid-19, she tweeted in a statement Monday morning. McEnany emphasized that she had previously tested negatively “consistently” and is experiencing no symptoms. McEnany is the latest White House staffer to test positive for the virus, adding to questions about how widespread the West Wing outbreak will become. McEnany’s diagnosis is a stark reminder that the administration has flouted science and best practices before and even after the President tested positive. She continued to publicly shirk mask usage in the days since President Donald Trump and other staffers and outside advisers tested positive for the virus. She was scheduled to appear on Fox News on Monday morning but the appearance was canceled. The press secretary later shared she was positive for the virus. Two of McEnany’s deputies, Chad Gilmartin and Karoline Leavitt, have also tested positive for coronavirus, two sources told CNN Monday afternoon. White House press staff are working remotely, an official said, but some essential workers are still at the White House. McEnany wrote Monday that she will “begin the quarantine process,” meaning that she will isolate Speaking with Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Monday evening, McEnany said she is “feeling great” and “very blessed’ to have no symptoms. She praised Trump’s mask-less photo op on the White House balcony Monday as a “really nice moment.”
“Pence, Harris Gear Up for V.P. Debate After Trump’s Positive Covid-19 Test” by WSJ’s Tarini Parti and Andrew Restuccia – Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris spent part of the weekend preparing for a debate that has taken on new importance after the hospitalization of President Trump elevated the vice president’s role and caused both sides to re-evaluate their strategy in the final stretch of the campaign. Vice presidential debates typically have little impact on presidential races, but since the virus took Mr. Trump off the campaign trail, the face-off Wednesday at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City could garner more interest from voters. “It will be an unprecedented debate in an unprecedented year,” said Karen Finney, who served as a senior adviser to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. She said the debate was historic because Ms. Harris is the first Black woman and person of Indian descent nominated for vice president by a major party and because of the circumstances facing the country. The vice presidential debate follows a chaotic first meeting between Mr. Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, when both men traded insults and Mr. Trump repeatedly interrupted his challenger. Some allies of the president have said privately that he was too aggressive and worried that his performance might have turned off some voters. The two are scheduled to face each other in two more debates this month, though it is not clear how Mr. Trump’s illness will affect those plans.
“Trump administration to block FDA guidelines that could delay coronavirus vaccine: report” by Fox News’ Brittany De Lea – The White House is looking to potentially block guidelines proposed by the Food and Drug Administration regarding the approval of a coronavirus vaccine for emergency use. Instead, the FDA is seeking other ways to ensure that the vaccines meet the guidelines, according to a report from The New York Times on Monday, which cited people familiar with the approval process. The moves by the FDA include potentially sending the standards to an outside committee of experts as soon as this week. One of the big points of contention is that – in order for the vaccine to be approved – participants in clinical trials would need to be followed for two months upon completion of their treatment to monitor possible side effects. Several companies are in the final stages of clinical trials, but that requirement would make it unlikely that a vaccine would receive approval before Nov. 3. The FDA submitted the guidance to the White House on Sept. 21, reportedly igniting an immediate disagreement over the process. Approval of the measures is said to be unlikely and the White House has the authority to intervene where this type of guidance is concerned, the Times reported. Spokespeople for the White House and the FDA did not immediately return Fox News’ request for comment. The president has repeatedly said a vaccine could be approved by November, including during last week’s presidential debate. Trump, meanwhile, returned to the White House from Walter Reed Medical Center on Monday, where he was admitted on Friday following his positive COVID-19 diagnosis.
“Eric Trump sat for deposition as part of investigation by New York attorney general” by CNN’s Kara Scannell – Eric Trump, who runs day-to-day operations of the family real estate empire, sat for a deposition on Monday as part of the New York Attorney General’s investigation into whether the Trump Organization improperly inflated the value of its assets, a person familiar with the matter tells CNN. The deposition follows a court battle over whether he would sit for testimony and provides a key step in the New York civil investigation into the Trump Organization. Trump, who according to court records was scheduled to sit for the deposition on Monday, sat for the hearing virtually, the person said, adding that it ended around 5 p.m. Trump, the middle son of President Donald Trump and executive vice president of the Trump Organization, has taken over day-to-day operations of the real estate business since his father became president. His deposition schedule was disclosed in a court filing made on Friday.\ New York lawyers have said they want to interview Eric Trump as part of their investigation into whether the Trump Organization and Donald Trump “improperly inflated the value of Mr. Trump’s assets on financial statements in order to secure loans and obtain economic and tax benefits.” One specific area that investigators are looking into is a conservation easement Trump took for Seven Springs. New York investigators said in court filings that Donald Trump “apparently” took a $21 million income tax deduction on the lost development value to the property.
“IRS Investigating NRA’s Wayne LaPierre for Possible Tax Fraud” by WSJ’s Mark Maremont and Aruna Viswanatha – The Internal Revenue Service is investigating longtime National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre for possible criminal tax fraud related to his personal taxes, according to people familiar with the matter. Mr. LaPierre was paid $2.2 million by the NRA in 2018, the most recent year available, the nonprofit group’s public filings show. His total reported pay from 2014 to 2018 was $11.2 million. In August, he was charged in a civil suit by New York Attorney General Letitia James with taking millions of dollars of allegedly undisclosed compensation from the NRA and its vendors, in the form of free yacht trips, private jet flights for his family, exotic safaris and other benefits. Asked at a news conference announcing the lawsuit whether she believed Mr. LaPierre had evaded personal taxes, Ms. James declined to comment but said she was referring the matter to the IRS. The AG lawsuit claimed the NRA’s failure to include certain personal benefits in Mr. LaPierre’s W-2 annual-compensation forms “permitted him to file false personal tax returns with the IRS.” P. Kent Correll, an attorney for Mr. LaPierre, said, “We’re not aware of any inquiry, so it would be premature for us to comment.” “The NRA is not aware of any IRS inquiry but, of course, will fully cooperate with any appropriate requests for assistance,” said William A. Brewer III, an outside attorney for the NRA, who noted that the group’s tax filings are audited.
“Trump discharged from Walter Reed, returns to White House” by Fox News’ Brooke Singman – President Trump was discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and returned to the White House on Monday evening to continue his fight against the novel coronavirus, after his medical team warned that he “may not entirely be out of the woods yet.” Dressed in a navy suit and tie and wearing a face mask, Trump walked out of Walter Reed on his own. Upon walking out the doors of the hospital, he made a low fist pump and gave a thumbs up to the press as he got into a black SUV to head to Marine One. The president teased his return to the White House Monday afternoon, saying he is “feeling really good!” “Don’t be afraid of Covid,” the president tweeted. “Don’t let it dominate your life. We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge.” He added: “I feel better than I did 20 years ago!” Trump appeared to have his reelection campaign at the forefront of his thoughts shortly before departing Walter Reed, promising his followers on Twitter that he will be back on the stump soon and blasting polls that show him trailing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Upon arriving to the White House, the president walked out on the balcony overlooking the South Lawn, surrounded by American flags, and saluted military officers and Marine One as it departed.
“US Supreme Court allows SC vote-by-mail restriction to proceed” by CNN’s Ariane De Vogue – The Supreme Court on Monday granted a request from South Carolina Republicans to reinstate the state’s witness-signature requirement on absentee ballots pending appeal. The court’s order on the first day of its new term is a loss for the Democratic National Committee. There were no noted dissents. The court said, however, that any ballots cast before it had acted, and received within two days of the order, cannot be rejected for failing to comply with the witness requirement. Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch indicated they would not have counted those ballots. “This sends a strong signal that the Supreme Court is going to be wary of federal court-ordered changes close to the election, even those done to deal with burdens on voters created by the pandemic,” said election law expert Rick Hasen, who serves as a CNN election law analyst. South Carolina law requires that voters casting mail-in absentee ballots swear an oath that they are qualified to vote and they received no assistance in voting when they seal and sign their ballots, and that oath must be witnessed by one other person, who must sign below the voter’s signature. Democrats challenged the provision, arguing that because of the coronavirus outbreak there is “overwhelming and unrefuted evidence, that as applied during the pandemic, the witness requirement increases the risk of Covid-19 infection and transmission and unconstitutionally burdens the right to vote.” A lower court blocked the requirement.
“Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican Spending Hawk, Won’t Seek Re-election” by WSJ’s Siobhan Hughes – Sen. Pat Toomey, a Pennsylvania Republican who favored limited government spending, plans to announce on Monday that he won’t seek re-election in 2022, according to a person familiar with the matter. The two-term senator plans to share his plans at a press conference in Bethlehem, Pa. He has called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) to tell him about his decision, this person said. A spokesman for Mr. Toomey declined to comment. Mr. Toomey, 58-years-old, was elected to the Senate during the 2010 tea-party movement. He defeated the late Sen. Arlen Specter, a multiterm moderate who was elected as a Republican but switched to the Democratic Party in 2009. Mr. Toomey has focused on trade and tax policy. He was instrumental in Mr. Trump’s signature fiscal achievement, a $1.5 trillion 2017 tax cut, by negotiating the deal that enabled sizable cuts in the corporate tax rate and the household income-tax rate. But Mr. Toomey was uncomfortable with Mr. Trump. In his 2016 re-election race, Mr. Toomey maintained a distance from the president and was among Republican senators who distanced themselves from Mr. Trump during the campaign. Mr. Toomey battled with the White House over Mr. Trump’s trade agenda, trying to thwart the president’s plans to place 20% tariffs on imported vehicles. More recently, Mr. Toomey has tangled with Trump administration officials over their support for aid to the troubled airline industry, an approach that Mr. Toomey saw as a bailout of an industry at overcapacity, and he has opposed another large coronavirus stimulus package.
– paying his children as consultants
– writing off personal lifestyle expenses
– writing off campaign spending
– inventing false spending
The IRS needs to investigate.