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Wake Up To Politics - August 18, 2016

Thursday, August 18, 2016
82 Days Until Election Day 2016
39 Days Until the First Presidential Debate
I'm Gabe Fleisher for Wake Up To Politics, and reporting from WUTP world HQ in my bedroom - Good morning: THIS IS YOUR WAKE UP CALL!!!
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  • Today on the Trail Where are the 2016 presidential candidates and their running mates today?
  • Republican nominee Donald Trump will hold a rally at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina at 7:30pm Eastern Time. North Carolina, which was won by Barack Obama in 2008 but by Mitt Romney in 2012, has been leaning towards Clinton according to recent polls. A NBC/WSJ/Marist poll released last week found Clinton beating Trump in the state, 48% to 39%.
  • While in the state, Trump will also attend a fundraiser at the Trump National Golf Club in Mooresville, North Carolina. Tickets range from $2,700 to $100,000, with proceeds benefiting the Trump Victory Fund, a joint fundraising effort between the Trump campaign, the Republican National Committee, and various state Republican parties.
  • Trump’s running mate Mike Pence will hold a town hall-style event at the Executive Banquet Center in Manchester, New Hampshire at 2pm Eastern Time. New Hampshire is another battleground state that has been leaning in Clinton’s favor, with a CBS News/YouGov poll released last week also finding the Democrat with a 9-point lead, 45% to Trump’s 36%.
  • Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton has no public events scheduled for today. According to her campaign, she will be meeting in New York with eight law enforcement leaders: the chiefs of police of New York City, Los Angeles, Tucson, Seattle, Camden County (New Jersey), and Dallas County (Texas), as well as the New York City police commissioner and a former Philadelphia police commissioner. The meeting comes just days after Trump delivered a major “law and order” speech Tuesday (in which he accused Clinton of anti-police “bigotry”), and in the wake of police shootings of African-Americans in recent weeks and months.
  • Clinton running mate Tim Kaine holds a fundraiser today in Sun Valley, Idaho – another Kaine foray into deep-red territory. Ticket costs range from $1,000 to $33,400.
  • Finally, Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson and vice presidential nominee Bill Weld will hold a rally at The Foundry in Las Vegas, Nevada to speak about their campaign and answer questions.
  • Ad Wars: Clinton Releases New Ad Hillary Clinton’s campaign launched a new ad to hit the airwaves today, focusing on their latest attack on Donald Trump. The ad, titled “Absolutely,” goes after Trump for not releasing his tax returns – but shows a 2014 interview in which he tells an interviewer “if I decide to run for office, I’ll produce my tax returns, absolutely.”
  • The ad shows Republicans speculating on what are in Trump’s returns, such as George Will guessing “he is deeply involved in dealing with Russian oligarchs” and Mitt Romney declaring “either he’s not anywhere near as wealthy as he says he is or there’s a bombshell in Donald Trump’s taxes.
  • The 30-second ad ends with the message: “Donald Trump. He’s hiding something.”
  • Meanwhile, Donald Trump will end Clinton’s dominance of the airwaves Friday as he airs his first general election ad buy, spots in battleground states Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania.
  • Campaign Reads What to read on the 2016 campaign today:
  • Clinton Campaign Restructures “For years, presidential campaigns seeking to divide the country into manageable chunks have turned to geography. National parties assign political directors to each region; Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign even went so far as to designate regional campaign managers. Both of President Barack Obama’s campaigns were organized around a series of six regional pods, with a lead official in each responsible for managing field, data, communication, or digital across seven or eight states.”
  • “2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton also uses pods—but hers look nothing like Obama’s. As she has reoriented her campaign for the general election, her team has devised a structure that reflects not geographic contiguity, with its common weather patterns or vernacular music traditions across neighboring states, but instead the different type of campaigning she will need to win each one. Most importantly, the structure acknowledges the increasing importance of early voting, which offers Clinton the potential to lock in an early lead when ballots begin to be cast in late September.”
  • ...“In Clinton’s Brooklyn headquarters, states with major opportunities for early voting—such as North Carolina and Colorado—are in their own pod, while the remaining states are divided into two. One pod has large, diverse states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, where mobilizing minorities and young whites will be essential to her victory. The other pod contains smaller, mostly white ones like Iowa and New Hampshire, which present fewer opportunities to identify and turn out new voters but a major need for persuasion.”
  • The reorganization reflects the fact that the calendar, rather than the map, has been growing ever more important. More than one-quarter of Americans who voted in 2012 did so in ways other than visiting a polling place on Election Day, according to data compiled by University of Florida political scientist Michael P. McDonald.” (Bloomberg)
  • Inside the Presidential Transitions “Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump’s preparations to take over the government if they’re elected are now in high gear, and their transition teams are working out of the same building a block from the White House at 1717 Pennsylvania Ave.”
  • It’s the first time in history that two presidential campaigns have worked to set up their governments in miniature literally side-by-side, riding the same elevators to adjacent floors of the tony, marble-floored building as they plan to govern.” (Washington Post)
  • Pence Reaches Out to GOP Establishment “Mike Pence is on a mission to mend fences between recalcitrant Republicans and Donald Trump, but Trump isn’t helping him do it.”
  • “Pence is hoping his years in the upper echelons of Republican politics will help him win over Republicans still skeptical of their party’s nominee, but his bid has gotten little help from the top of the ticket. The plan for GOP outreach started with Pence, his aides confirm, and while Trump nominally supports the effort, he hasn’t taken an active part in it. Pence, not Trump, picks who gets meetings and phone calls, and when Pence does speak with fellow Republicans, Trump does not send along guidance or specific messages for his running mate to convey. The extent of Trump’s participation is to discuss with Pence some, but not all, of his meetings.” (Politico)
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For more on Wake Up To Politics, listen to Gabe on NPR's "Talk of the Nation", St. Louis Public Radio, the Political Junkie podcast, and on StoryCorps; watch Gabe on MSNBC's "Up with Steve Kornacki"; and read about Gabe in Politico, the Washington Post, Independent Journal, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Salon, the Globe, and the St. Louis Jewish Light.