Thursday, August 25, 2016
75 Days Until Election Day 2016
32 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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Before I begin today’s newsletter, I just wanted to let everyone know that I start school today. I’m back to waking up at 6am, going to classes, doing homework, after-school activities, etc. I am starting high school this year, and while I expect the workload to be more than last year, I am still hoping to churn out Wake Up To Politics every morning.
From now until June, this is the time (around 7:30am) you can expect the newsletter hitting your inbox. As I adjust to 9th grade, if you notice my newsletters to be shorter, or less informational – please excuse me, stay subscribed, and know that I am just as dedicated to informing my readers as ever…but that I am just a little busier.
This is going to be an exciting election year, and I expect to have tons of material to write about in the upcoming months as the candidates up and down the ballot continue to campaign and debate, as President Obama finishes up his last year in office, and as Congress votes on a number of important issues. I’m excited to continue reporting on it!
At any time, if you feel I’m overlooking a story that should be written about, or have any questions about the newsletter or politics in general, have any tips or suggestions, a new subscriber, or anything else – please email me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I will always respond in a (mostly) timely manner.
With that – enjoy today’s newsletter…and wish me luck in high school!
- Trump Makes Appeal to Hispanics, African-Americans In a pitch to broaden support for his sliding campaign, Donald Trump continued his appeal to Hispanic and African-American voters on Wednesday in speeches to Florida and Mississippi audiences.
- While speaking in Tampa, Florida on Wednesday morning, Trump spoke directly to Hispanics. “I am going to fight to give every Hispanic citizen a much better future, a much better life,” Trump said. “You have the right to walk outside without being shot. You have a right to a good education for your child. You have the right to own your home. You have the right to have a good job.”
- Using similar talking points to his pitch to African-American voters, Trump also said: “Hispanics are tired of being used by these phony politicians. I say, what do you have to lose? I will fix it.”
- In an interview airing on Fox News on Wednesday night, Trump told anchor Sean Hannity that he would “work with” immigrants living illegally in the United States – a huge departure from his previous hardline position that they should all be mass deported, a signature issue of his campaign. Trump did not, however, propose a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants, or go into much detail on his revised plan. “No citizenship,” Trump said. “Let me go a step further – They’ll pay back taxes, they have to pay taxes, there's no amnesty, as such, there's no amnesty, but we work with them.”
- Trump’s comments were not that far from those made by former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-FL), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Gov. John Kasich (R-OH) during the Republican presidential primaries, when the trio were all opponents of Trump’s. “I think for the eleven or twelve million people here illegally, they should come out from the shadows, they should pay a fine, they should pay taxes, they should work,” Bush said in October 2015.
- Trump ripped him apart for the position. Asked about the similarity between Kristy Campbell told Politico: “It is unsurprising that Donald Trump is finally faced with reconciling his immigration policy with reality, something Gov. Bush predicted last year."
- In the interview, Trump appeared to remain in favor of deporting illegal immigrants who have committed crimes (“Now, everybody agrees we get the bad ones out.”) However, he is “softening” his position from the primaries that a “deportation force” will round up all 11 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S.
- Trump continued: “When I go through and I meet thousands and thousands of people on this subject, and I’ve had very strong people come up to me, really great, great people come up to me, and they’ve said, ‘Mr. Trump, I love you, but to take a person who's been here for 15 or 20 years and throw them and their family out, it’s so tough, Mr. Trump.’ I have it all the time! It’s a very, very hard thing.”
- Later Wednesday, at a rally in Jackson, Mississippi, the Republican nominee spoke for the first time of criteria for any immigration policy he would propose as president. “Any immigration policy I support as president must pass these three tests,” Trump told his audience. “First, it must improve jobs and wages for U.S. citizens. Second, it must improve the safety and security of U.S. citizens. Third, it must improve the quality of life for U.S. citizens.”
- Meanwhile, Trump attacked his opponent Hillary Clinton for her own plans for minorities. “Hillary Clinton is a bigot who sees people of color only as votes, not as human beings worthy of a better future,” Trump said. “Her push for open borders will lower the wages and kill the jobs of lawful American residents.”
- While he has referred to Clinton as “bigoted” before, Wednesday was the first time Trump just called her a “bigot,” and it even visibly took some of his Mississippi audience by surprise.
- Trump continued Wednesday, saying: “It's time to give the Democrats some competition for African American votes & Hispanic votes.”
- With his position unclear, Trump received criticism from the left and right on immigration. Conservative commentator Ann Coulter said she thought it is a “mistake” for Trump to soften his position on illegal immigration, the issue most important to her. In Coulter’s new book, “In Trump We Trust,” a defense of the Republican nominee that was published on Tuesday, she writes: “…there’s nothing Trump can do that won’t be forgiven. Except change his immigration policy.”
- With his policy now seeming to change, Coulter said Wednesday that “this could be the shortest book tour ever if he’s really softening his position on immigration.”
- From the left, National Immigration Forum executive director Ali Noorani called for Trump to detail his exact position on immigration. “Talking point are great,” Noorani said in a statement. “But, where’s the beef? We need specifics and coherent policy proposals on immigrants and immigration from the Republican presidential nominee.”
- Trump was also the brunt of attacks from the Clinton campaign. “Here’s a message for Trump: Latinos can see through your cynical ploys,” said Lorella Praeli, the Clinton campaign National Director of Latino Vote. “No play of words can hide the fact that you've built your entire campaign on a dangerous agenda that seeks to demonize immigrants, deport 16 million people, build a giant concrete wall and send a deportation force into our communities.”
- However, many in Trump’s camp defended him Wednesday. Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a Trump surrogate and immigration headliner, said the GOP nominee is not “softening,” but planning to “negotiate” with minorities. “I don’t know about softening the stance. He is going to meet with the minority groups. He is a great negotiator,” the Arizona sheriff told CNN’s Carol Costello.
- Trump is expected to fully unveil his new immigration policy in a speech in Phoenix, Arizona next Wednesday. And it seems Trump is still unsure of exactly what the policy he’ll be unveiling is. At the town hall with Sean Hannity, Trump even polled the audience. Asked about immigration at one point, Trump instead answered, “I’ll ask the audience.”
- “You have somebody who is terrific, who has been here ... a long time,” Trump continued, laying out a situation. “A long court proceeding, long everything, okay? In other words, to get them out, can we go through a process or do you think they have to get out? Tell me. I mean, I don't know. You tell me. I want to know.”
- “Number one, we’ll say throw out. Number wo, we work with them, ready?” Trump called out: “Number one,” then waited for applause before calling out “number two.” Listing to the applause after each option, Trump decided what his crowd was telling him: “No citizenship,” he said.
- #ThrowbackThursday Trump tweeted in September 2015 about Marco Rubio’s “Gang of Eight” position (which he has now nearly adopt), and about how he changed only after seeing sliding poll numbers (similar to Trump’s situation): “Marco Rubio is a member of the Gang Of Eight or, very weak on stopping illegal immigration. Only changed when poll numbers crashed.”
- In another tweet, flagged by CBS News Chief White House Correspondent and Wake Up To Politics reader Major Garrett, Trump went after Ted Cruz in February for the position he now almost supports: “Ted Cruz only talks tough on immigration now because he did so badly in S.C. He is in favor of amnesty and weak on illegal immigration.”
- How is Trump’s Base Responding? The Washington Post interviews a number of Trump supporters at his rallies, finding that “many rank-and-file voters will give Trump relatively broad latitude to alter the parameters of his immigration policies,” as long as he stays true to his promise to build a wall on the southern border. (Washington Post)
- How are Minority Voters Responding? The Associated Press collected reactions from African-American voters, responding to Trump’s appeal to their support. “Many black Republican officials praise the overtures, though they say Trump must work harder to make the argument directly to black voters in communities where they live, instead of at rallies with nearly all-white crowds gathered in mostly white cities.”
- “Black Democrats and rank-and-file voters, meanwhile, say Trump's effort is at best too little, too late and at worst a cynical play actually aimed at whites.” (Associated Press)
- What’s Really Behind Trump’s Pivot? Philip Bump of “The Fix” blog goes through polling, step-by-step, to explain why Trump is really softening his position on immigration and reaching out to minortity voters. Hint: it’s not about getting support from minorities. It’s about getting support from college-educated white women. (The Fix)
- What Does the Polling Say? “Trump is currently in fourth place among black voters. You read that correctly: He’s trailing Hillary Clinton, Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party nominee Jill Stein. Any one national poll typically has only about 100 African-American respondents — too small a sample to make much of the results. So here’s an average of the four live-interview surveys taken since the conventions, from ABC News/Washington Post, Fox News, Marist, and NBC News/Wall Street Journal: [Clinton, 86%; Stein, 5%, Johnson 4%, Trump 2%).” (FiveThirtyEight)
- Today on the Trail: Clinton Talks “Alt-Right” in Nevada, Trump and Johnson in New Hampshire, Pence Surveys Torando Damage in Indiana, and Kaine Visits Colbert Hillary Clinton’s campaign has spent much of the last week on the defensive. Donald Trump continued to criticize Clinton for her lack of recent press conference and went after her support in the African-American community, while new revelations and attacks emerged concerning the Clinton Foundation and the former Secretary of State’s emails.
- All the while, Clinton herself remained largely silent as she held fundraisers in the Bay Area (and brought in $19 million in three days). The Democratic nominee has not held a public event in over a week. The silence ends today, as Clinton campaigns in the battleground state of Nevada to “deliver a speech to address Donald Trump and his advisors’ embrace of the disturbing ‘alt-right’ political philosophy,” according to a news release by her campaign.
- The release continued, explaining the meaning of “alt-right,” a term just beginning to rise in prominence since its coinage in the past half-decade. “This ‘alt-right’ brand is embracing extremism and presenting a divisive and dystopian view of America which should concern all Americans, regardless of party,” Clinton’s campaign said. “In her remarks, Clinton will contrast Donald Trump's divisive views and dangerous temperament with her vision of an America that is stronger together and where everyone has a role to play in the future.”
- Trump’s marriage with the “alt-right” was widely seen as confirmed after his hiring last week of Steve Bannon, once characterized as the “most dangerous political operative in America” by Bloomberg Politics, to act as campaign CEO. Bannon was previously executive chairman of the conservative news website Breitbart, which has been called the “media arm of the ‘alt-right’” by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
- While there is no formal ideology behind the “alt-right” (Mic described them as an “amorphous conservative movement”), the term has been used as an umbrella for white nationalism, anti-Semitism, nativism and other right-wing beliefs. Many of those who identify under the “alt-right” banner are straight, white men, often bound together online by opposition to immigration and other causes, as well as a sense of victimhood – and, in many cases, support for Donald Trump.
- In her remarks today, Clinton will paint the “alt-right” as a dangerous faction of America, and one brought mainstream by Trump’s candidacy. Clinton’s speech will take place at Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, Nevada, at 12pm today.
- Meanwhile, both Donald Trump and Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson campaign in New Hampshire today. Trump will hold a rally at The Radisson Hotel in Manchester at 1pm, while Johnson is set to hold a rally on the steps of the New Hampshire State House in Concord at 6:30pm.
- With one exception (2000), Granite State has voted Democratic in every presidential election since 1992, although the race there is normally closely fought. According to the RealClearPolitics polling average, Clinton currently leads in the state by eight percentage points, taking 43% of the vote to Trump’s 35%. Johnson, boosted by New Hampshire’s libertarian “Live Free or Die” streak, takes 8% (among his best statewide totals) and Green Party nominee Jill Stein receives 4%.
- Neither of the major-party vice presidential nominees have any public events today. Gov. Mike Pence (R-IN) is in his home state to inspect damage in Montgomery and Howard Counties, two of the areas hit hardest by the three tornadoes that ravaged Indiana on Wednesday. Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) will make his first late-night talk show appearance of the 2016 campaign with a visit to Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City, home of CBS’ “The Late Show Show with Stephen Colbert,” airing at 11:35pm. Also guesting on “The Late Show” tonight? Emmy Award-winning actor Tony Hale, who plays personal aide to a fictional Vice President on HBO’s “Veep”.
- CNN media critic Brian Lowry tweets: “Have to imagine there’s a ‘Veep’ sketch in [the show] somewhere.”
- The President’s Schedule: Quiet Day For the second day in a row, President Barack Obama has no public events scheduled today. At 10am, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. At 4:15pm, Obama will sit down with Defense Secretary Ashton Carter for a meeting.
- Today’s Trivia Today is the 100th anniversary of Woodrow Wilson signing the National Park Service Organic Act into law, officially creating the National Park Service. To mark the agency’s centennial: what was the first U.S. national park?
- Email me (email@example.com) or tweet me (@WakeUp2Politics) with the answer; correct respondents get their name in tomorrow’s newsletter.
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