Rubio Will Help Trump Get Elected

Sen. Marco Rubio told CNN that he plans to attend the Republican convention, will release his delegates to vote for Donald Trump and would be willing to speak on Trump’s behalf.

Said Rubio: “I want to be helpful. I don’t want to be harmful, because I don’t want Hillary Clinton to be president.”

He also said his political aspirations aren’t over, calling it a “safe assumption” that he’ll run for office — the presidency or something else — again.

Having Fun Yet?

Amy Walter: “Finally, I’m asked a lot these days by friends and family if I am ‘having fun’ this election season. ‘This sure is an exciting election, isn’t it?’ they ask. ‘You must be in hog heaven.’ Actually, and sadly, I am not enjoying this. This year, the electorate will be divided along race, education/class and gender like never before. I’m preparing myself for a campaign that is going to be nasty and ugly and will leave the country more polarized than it is today. There’s nothing to be happy about there.”

Vince Foster’s Sister Responds

Sheila Foster Anthony: “It is beyond contempt that a politician would use a family tragedy to further his candidacy, but such is the character of Donald Trump displayed in his recent comments to The Washington Post. In this interview, Trump cynically, crassly and recklessly insinuated that my brother, Vincent W. Foster Jr., may have been murdered because ‘he had intimate knowledge of what was going on’ and that Hillary Clinton may have somehow played a role in Vince’s death.”

“How wrong. How irresponsible. How cruel.”

Baylor Demotes Ken Starr

Kenneth Starr, the independent counsel who delivered a report that served as the basis for President Bill Clinton’s impeachment in 1998, was demoted by Baylor University, where he had served as president and chancellor, after an investigation found “fundamental failure” by the university in its handling of accusations of sexual assault against football players, the New York Times reports.

How Is Hillary Worse?

Walter Shapiro: “The Clintonian penchant for parsing the language in order to mislead — shared by both the former president and first lady — might be troubling. Except when compared to the non-stop outpouring of lies from the man whom the GOP will nominate in Cleveland.”

“Yes, Hillary’s stubborn refusal to provide the transcripts of her presumably fawning speeches at Goldman Sachs events is a symbol of her obsession with secrecy. But Trump,  defying four decades of political tradition, balks at even releasing his tax returns.  ”

“For Republicans appalled by Trump, there are, in truth, only two reasons to support the top of the ticket — careerism and a timorous fear of being tarred with disloyalty. It would be more intellectually honest for these Republicans to announce that they are writing in The Incredible Hulk for president than to facilely argue that Hillary is worse.”

Split Over Israel Threatens to Keep Democrats Divided

“A bitter divide over the Middle East could threaten Democratic Party unity as representatives of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont vowed to upend what they see as the party’s lopsided support of Israel,” the New York Times reports.

“Two of the senator’s appointees to the party’s platform drafting committee, Cornel West and James Zogby, on Wednesday denounced Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza and said they believed that rank-and-file Democrats no longer hewed to the party’s staunch support of the Israeli government. They said they would try to get their views incorporated into the platform, the party’s statement of core beliefs, at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in July.”

Hatch Reacts to Meeting Before It Occurs

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) accidentally published an op-ed in the Deseret News claiming that his meeting with Judge Merrick Garland didn’t change his mind about delaying action on the nomination until after the presidential election, the Washington Post reports.

The problem: Hatch hasn’t even met with Garland yet.

The article was removed from the Deseret News website but remains available in a Google database.

Trump Officially Clinches the GOP Nomination

“Donald Trump on Thursday reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign,” the AP reports.

“Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party’s unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the convention.”

A Trump vs. Sanders Debate?

Rick Klein: “Did we close the door on debate season too soon? Donald Trump told Jimmy Kimmel Wednesday that he’d consider debating Bernie Sanders one-on-one … and Sanders quickly indicated that he’s interested. There are plenty of reasons to be skeptical of whether this is real, starting with Trump’s insistence that Sanders pony up cash for charity as a precondition. (We’ve seen where such demands ended in the past.) But this might be a wacky enough idea to happen.”

“Trump would love to elevate Sanders as a means of tweaking Hillary Clinton before the general election is officially upon us; Clinton, of course, is refusing to debate Sanders in California. And Sanders would love to showcase the general-election matchup he is pitching as stronger for Democrats in advance of voting in California June 7. The matchup only ‘SNL’ could imagine might be a fitting end to a wacky primary season.”

Jonathan Chait: “Sanders would get to be elevated to the role of imaginary Democratic candidate, using the platform to display himself outperforming Trump, as he has always claimed he could. The Trump debate would be a media spectacle, providing him with gobs of free publicity. Trump’s incentive is, perhaps, even stronger.”

Clinton’s Email Problems Aren’t Going Away

Politico: “A newly issued report on Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server flatly rejects one of her core defenses in the controversy — that she was playing by the rules.”

“And while the findings of the State Department Inspector General probe don’t land any devastating blows against the Democratic front-runner, they provide ample grist to keep questions about her handling of the situation alive as the general election campaign gears up.”