*This article appears in the November 12, 2018, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!
*This article appears in the November 12, 2018, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!
Mike Pompeo says he won’t run for senate in Kansas, which probably doesn’t actually mean much
Milwaukee is expected to be tapped as the Democratic Convention host in 2020, but Miami isn’t going down without a fight
Miami’s stable of Democratic donors — many of whom have hosted President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton multiple times and are already being hit up by numerous Democratic presidential hopefuls — are applying their clout to the city’s bid. Some of them say they’re already leaning on potential 2020 candidates — they won’t say which ones — to get them behind Miami’s convention bid.
Underpinning Miami’s pitch: It’s the heart of the largest Democratic county in the nation’s biggest swing state. Losing Florida — which is worth 29 Electoral College votes, compared to Wisconsin’s 10 — would likely cost President Donald Trump his reelection.
“We’re making a final effort to convince the DNC that Miami is the best place to go, that this could be a boost to the nominee,” said Chris Korge, the top financier of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and a co-chair of Miami’s convention effort.
California’s status as right-wing punching bag makes little sense, considering what an economic powerhouse it is
California is now the world’s fifth-largest economy, up from eighth a decade ago. If it’s a socialist hellhole, it’s a socialist hellhole that somehow nurtured Apple, Google, Facebook, Tesla, Uber, Netflix, Oracle and Intel, not to mention old-economy stalwarts like Chevron, Disney, Wells Fargo and the Hollywood film industry. California firms still attract more venture capital than the rest of the country combined, while its farms produce more fruits, nuts and wine than the rest of the country combined. During the Great Recession, when the state was mired in a budget crisis so brutal its bond rating approached junk and it gave IOUs to government workers, mainstream media outlets were proclaiming the death of the California dream. But after a decade of steady growth that has consistently outpaced the nation’s, plus a significant tax hike on the wealthy, California is in much sounder fiscal shape; while federal deficits are soaring again, the state has erased its red ink and even stashed $13 billion in a rainy day fund.
Things took a dramatic turn in the hearing over possible election fraud in North Carolina
The son of Republican congressional candidate Mark Harris testified Wednesday that he warned his father repeatedly that he believed a political operative now at the center of an election-fraud investigation had previously used illegal tactics to win votes.
John Harris, now an assistant U.S. attorney in Raleigh, said he advised his father in conversations and emails that he believed Leslie McCrae Dowless was “shady” and appeared to have illegally collected absentee ballots in 2016 while working for a different Republican candidate in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District.
… At one point during his testimony, John Harris’s voice cracked and his father wept.
“I thought what he was doing was illegal, and I was right,” John Harris said about Dowless. He added: “I had no reason to believe that my father actually knew, or my mother or any other associate with the campaign had any knowledge. I think Dowless told them he wasn’t doing any of this, and they believed him.”
Maybe Trump should have consulted with our allies before announcing a big policy change in Syria
As the deadline approaches for the withdrawal of U.S. forces fighting the Islamic State in Syria, America’s closest European allies have turned down a Trump administration request to fill the gap with their own troops, according to U.S. and foreign officials.
Allies have “unanimously” told the United States that they “won’t stay if you pull out,” a senior administration official said. France and Britain are the only other countries with troops on the ground in the U.S.-led coalition battling the Islamic State.
Along with the United States, they have provided training, supplies, logistics and intelligence for the Syrian Democratic Forces, the Kurdish-dominated group that has done most of the fighting. U.S., French and British forces also operate heavy artillery and conduct the airstrikes that have been decisive against the militants.
Lead is still a major public-health disaster in many American cities
While we rightfully panic about the increasing dangers of a warming planet wrought by human industry, our negligence in housing — paired with a helping of systemic racism and poverty — has insured that children today are exposed to environmental dangers that should have been eradicated long ago. Five weeks before Trump made his declaration in an attempt to seize his border wall funding, researchers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland published two new studiesin coordination with a Cuyahoga County early-childhood initiative. Their conclusions were harrowing. Analyzing statistics obtained from the Ohio Department of Health, the Case studies found that 10.7 percent of children born in 2012 were found to have elevated blood lead level (EBLL) by age five. That’s 1,237 affected kids. And though overall lead-contamination rates for children in the region have declined for many years, kids under six in Cuyahoga County accounted for 41 percent of Ohio’s cases of elevated exposure.
Children living in pre-1978 housing laden with lead paint is the primary threat identified by the studies. Such homes are prevalent throughout Cleveland and its suburbs, and it’s chilling to consider the likelihood of children crawling around houses containing materials that could poison them. Before age six is about the worst possible time for exposure, as the neurotoxin present in lead potentially causes permanent damage in developing brains.
The stockpile of the U.S. Coast Guard officer who intended to kill Democrats and journalists
The EPA cribbed the music for a game about recycling from the background music for Yoshi’s Island
The United States’ Environmental Protection Agency has an educational flash game on its site called Recycle City Challenge. That in itself is not special. However, what is interesting is that when you clicked the Let’s Get Started button, a familiar tune for Mario fans played.
The Verge reached out to the EPA for comment after the incident. Here’s what the EPA told the publication:
The ‘Recycle City Challenge’ game was created for EPA by a contractor. We are looking into whether the contractor received permission to use the music, to the extent permission was necessary in this instance.
Nancy Pelosi announces that the House will vote on a resolution to oppose Trump’s emergency declaration
All Members take an oath of office to support and defend the Constitution. The President’s decision to go outside the bounds of the law to try to get what he failed to achieve in the constitutional legislative process violates the Constitution and must be terminated. We have a solemn responsibility to uphold the Constitution, and defend our system of checks and balances against the President’s assault.
Sanders rules out an independent bid in 2020
Sen. Bernie Sanders plans to sign a party pledge affirming that he will run for president as a Democrat in 2020 and serve as one if elected, senior campaign adviser Jeff Weaver told CNN on Wednesday.
The Democratic National Committee said on Tuesday that it planned to meet in the coming week with the presidential primary campaigns and distribute a form to the candidates, who under bylaws agreed on last August will be required “to affirm in writing” that they “are a member of the Democratic Party, will accept the Democratic nomination” and “will run and serve as a member of the Democratic Party.”
Sanders declined the Democratic nomination in all three of his Senate campaigns, choosing to run as an independent after winning the party’s primary.
The same day as the Trump-Kim summit in Vietnam
Pandora’s box of blackface has been opened
A U.S. Attorney says New York owes the federal government for “falsely claiming that numerous NYCDOT vehicles were damaged during Superstorm Sandy”
It’s a tune as old as the special counsel itself, but the Mueller investigation may actually be coming to a close soon
Attorney General Bill Barr is preparing to announce as early as next week the completion of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, with plans for Barr to submit to Congress soon after a summary of Mueller’s confidential report, according to people familiar with the plans.
The preparations are the clearest indication yet that Mueller is nearly done with his almost two-year investigation.
Under the special counsel regulations, Mueller must submit a “confidential” report to the attorney general at the conclusion of his work, but the rules don’t require it to be shared with Congress, or by extension, the public. And, as Barr has made clear, the Justice Department generally guards against publicizing “derogatory” information about uncharged individuals.
In addition, Mueller has referred certain matters that fell outside the scope of the Russia probe to other US Attorneys to pursue. Some of those investigations have already been revealed, including the investigation in New York into former Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen. That probe has spawned subsequent federal investigations in New York into the Trump Organization and the Trump Inaugural Committee. It is possible the special counsel’s team has referred other matters that have not yet come to light.
Some House Democrats are preparing to play the obstruction of justice card
The Times reported Tuesday that the president asked then-acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker late last year to put U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman in charge of the investigation into Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen. Cohen pleaded guilty last year to bank fraud, tax fraud and making payments to silence women alleging that they had affairs with Trump.
Berman, an ally of Trump who donated to his 2016 campaign, had recused himself from the case, and Whitaker did not act on Trump’s request, according to the report — which Trump has denied.
Democrats claim it is just the latest example of Trump trying to sway an investigation by influencing the investigator.
“I think if you just follow the number of incidences and evidence that has been presented involving the president and the Russia investigation and the investigation in the Southern District in New York and others, I think it clearly shows a pattern that the president has tried to use his influence and/or relationship to really interfere with the investigation,” said Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.).
It’s quite likely that the president is calling the press the “enemy of the people” after receiving briefings on how the people are targeting the press
Illinois will join California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York in the Fight for $15
Pritzker made a $15 minimum wage a cornerstone of his bid for governor, and made good on his campaign pledge Tuesday in Springfield, at a signing ceremony one day before his first budget address.
“Today is a victory for the cause of economic justice,” Pritzker said. “This will improve the lives of families across Illinois, and it will lift people out of poverty.”
Pritzker noted Illinois has not increased its minimum wage in nine years, and said the wage hike would affect 1.4 million workers statewide.
Domestic right-wing terrorism, thwarted
A U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant and self-identified white nationalist has been arrested after federal investigators uncovered a cache of weapons and ammunition in his Maryland home that authorities say he stockpiled to launch a massive domestic terror attack targeting politicians and journalists.
Christopher Paul Hasson called for “focused violence” to “establish a white homeland” and dreamed of ways to “kill almost every last person on earth,” according to court records filed in U.S. District Court in Maryland. Though court documents do not detail a specific planned date for an attack, the government said he had been amassing supplies and weapons since at least 2017, developed a spreadsheet of targets that included House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and searched the Internet using phrases such as “best place in dc to see congress people” and “are supreme court justices protected.”
Trump says he intervened personally in the case of a woman who married an ISIS member and now wants to return to America