Friday, August 26, 2016
74 Days Until Election Day 2016
31 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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- Dueling Clinton, Trump Strategies: Playing the Racist Card With under 75 days to go until the November presidential election, August is the new October – or it felt that way, at least, as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton attacked each other Thursday as if the election was nearing an end.
- The latest Clinton-Trump war of words all boils down to one word – racist, normally an untouchable accusation in American politics, which both candidates have yet to use – although they’ve each come pretty close. Trump opened the line of attack Wednesday night at a Mississippi rally, calling his opponent a “bigot who sees people of color only as votes, not as human beings worthy of a better future.”
- Team Clinton returned the fire, spending Thursday tying Trump to the white supremacist, nativist “alt-right” – first, with a web ad, and then with a landmark address in Reno, Nevada.
- In the video, a number of white supremacists can be seen supporting Trump, including a clip of the head of the Ku Klux Klan saying “a lot of what [Trump] believes, we believe in” and “Donald Trump would be best for the job,” as well as Trump refusing to condemn their support. A messages flashes over a picture of the White House at the end: “If Trump wins, they could be running the country.” Clinton continued in that vein in her Reno speech, accusing Trump of “taking hate groups mainstream.”
- “Trump is reinforcing harmful stereotypes and offering a dog whistle to his most hateful supporters,” she said, using some of her most forceful languge in the general election thus far to paint Trump and his supporters as racist. “It’s a disturbing preview of what kind of president he’d be.” Clinton also referenced the recent hiring of Breitbart News executive Steve Bannon as Trump’s campaign CEO. Bannon once called Breitbart News “the platform for the alt-right.”
- “The de facto merger between Breitbart and the Trump campaign represents a landmark achievement for the ‘alt-right,’ ” Clinton said. “A fringe element has effectively taken over the Republican Party.”
- 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.
- Trump’s marriage with the “alt-right” was widely seen as confirmed after Bannon’s installation atop the campaign last week.
- Trump responded in kind at a rally in Manchester, New Hampshire. “I will work to dismantle the criminal gangs and cartels and to liberate our poorest citizens from crime and violence and poverty and fear,” he said Thursday. “To Hillary Clinton and her donors and advisers, pushing her to spread smears and her lies about decent people, I have three words.”
- “I want you to remember these words,” Trump continued, gesturing with his index finger. “Shame. On. You.”
- At his rally, Trump also defended himself against the “racist” label. “It’s the oldest play in the Democratic playbook,” he said. “When Democratic policies fail, they are left with only this one tired argument: You’re racist, you’re racist, you’re racist. They keep saying it: You’re racist. It’s a tired, disgusting argument and it’s so totally predictable.”
- “We will steadfastly reject bigotry and hatred and oppression in all of its forms,” Trump claimed.
- What is behind the campaign’s latest focus on race and bigotry? Is it, as Trump claims, a pivot to grab support among minorities? In a word: no. According to the Quinnipiac University poll of likely voters released Thursday, 75% of non-white voters support Hillary Clinton, compared to just 15% who support Donald Trump. While this could change in small ways before November, Clinton’s stranglehold over the African-American and Hispanic communities is already cemented. Instead, Trump’s latest talk about race is a defense against the widely-held view that he is racist, which is stopping some moderate Republicans – especially women with a college degree – from supporting him. Clinton, capitalizing on this hesitance, starting going on the offensive Thursday in an attempt to pick up some of these Independent and Republican votes, trying to finalize in their minds that Trump is a racist.
- New Revelations on Steve Bannon Trump’s campaign CEO was mentioned Thursday in Clinton’s speech: “The latest shake-up was designed to – quote – ‘Let Trump be Trump.’ To do that, he hired Stephen Bannon, the head of a right-wing website called Breitbart.com, as campaign CEO. To give you a flavor of his work, here are a few headlines they’ve published: ‘Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy,” “Would You Rather Your Child Had Feminism or Cancer?,” “Gabby Giffords: The Gun Control Movement’s Human Shield, ” “Hoist It High And Proud: The Confederate Flag Proclaims A Glorious Heritage.”
- Just hours later, in a brand-new revelation, Politico reported that Bannon was once charged with misdemeanor domestic violence, battery, and dissuading of a witness following a Santa Monica police report in January 1996 saying that Bannon’s then-wife “claimed he pulled at her neck and wrist during an altercation over their finances, and an officer reported witnessing red marks on her neck and wrist to bolster her account. Bannon also reportedly smashed the phone when she tried to call the police,” according to Politico.
- More Quinnipiac Cross-Tabs Quinnipiac’s new poll showed Clinton leading Trump by double-digits, 51% to 41% - with the lead decreasing to 45% vs. 38% when Gary Johnson and Jill Stein are added.
- The poll clearly shows the battle lines of the 2016 election. According to the poll, Clinton leads among women (60% to 36%) and non-white voters (77% to 15), while Trump leads among men (48% to 42%) and white voters (52% to 41%).
- Clinton also leads among Independents (46% to 41%) and white voters with college degrees (47% to 46%). The latter group has voted Republican in every presidential election since 1952. Trump wins white voters without college degrees (58% to 35%).
- Finally, Clinton leads in the youngest two age categories (18-34, 64% to 29%; 35-49, 53% to 39%), while Trump beats her among the older two categories (50-64, 47% to 46%; 65+, 49% to 45%).
- Today on the Trail Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and Mike Pence all have no public events today. Tim Kaine will tour small businesses in Tallahassee, Florida, and will hold a voter registration kickoff event at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee.
- Gary Johnson and Bill Weld will speak at a brunch in Portland, Maine and at a rally in Lewiston, Maine today, before headlining a Fox Business News town hall at 9pm ET moderated by John Stossel.
- Three-Way Debate? Another stat in the Quinnipiac survey: 62% of Americans, and 82% of 18 to 34-year-olds, say they want Gary Johnson included in the presidential debates.
- Obama Visits Wounded Troops; Biden Returns to Delaware President Barack Obama will visit the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland today, to visit with wounded service members.
- According to CBS’ Mark Knoller, this will be Obama’s 28th visit to a military hospital.
- Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden has returned from his trip to Latvia, Turkey, and Sweden, and he is heading back home to Wilmington, Delaware. In his hometown, Biden will speak at the Joseph R. Biden Jr. Railroad Station, an Amtrak station the now-VP frequented when he took the train from Wilmington to Washington, D.C. every day as a senator.
- In the 3pm speech, Biden will announce a new federal investment in rail service to benefit Amtrak trains and “underscore the importance of investing in our nation’s transportation infrastructure,” according to his office.
- Also today: President Obama will continue to mark the National Park Service (NPS) centennial, which was yesterday, by again utilizing his power to create and expand National Monuments, which are also protected by the (NPS). Obama will expand the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument near Hawaii today, which will effectively ban fishing from more than 582,500 square miles (twice the size of Texas) of the Pacific Ocean. As a result of Obama’s proclamation, the national monument (originally created by George W. Bush in 2006) will quadruple in size, and become the largest marine protected area in the world.
- Obama’s expansion of Papahānaumokuākea comes after his creation of the Katahdin Woods and Water National Monument in Maine on Thursday.
- Today’s Trivia What U.S. law gives the President power to declare National Monuments? Answer by emailing (email@example.com) or tweeting (@WakeUp2Politics) me to get your name in tomorrow’s newsletter.
- Yesterday’s answer: Yellowstone National Park was the first U.S. national park.
- GREAT JOB… Aly abrams, Steve Gitnik, Joan Zucker, Jim Wilbat, Lyle Hendricks, Marlee Millman, Matt Nuefeld, Sharron Greenberg, @jeremylafaver, and @msxlvi.
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