September, 2015

Indiana Lawmaker Resigns Over Sex Video

Indiana state Rep. Jud McMillin (R) “has resigned unexpectedly from the Indiana House — where he is in the second-highest elected leadership position — after sources say at least one sexually explicit video was discovered on his phone,” the Indiana Business Journal reports.

“Sources close to the Republican caucus said someone obtained McMillin’s phone and discovered at least one video that showed the lawmaker involved in sexual contact. The sources did not detail who else was involved.”

Gowdy Unlikely to Enter Leadership Race

“A sudden swell of enthusiasm Tuesday for Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) to make a late-entry bid into the race for House majority leader faded almost as quickly as it began,” the Washington Post reports.

“Gowdy’s roller-coaster ride is a testament to the restiveness among the chamber’s younger generation of conservatives, who want more than assurances from above about their influence in the wake of House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) resignation announcement. They want a high-profile seat at the leadership table — and to inject some swagger into a party that for months has been meekly navigating through infighting and chaos.”

Conservatives Look to Put Gowdy in House Leadership

“A long-simmering campaign among conservative activists to draft Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) into a House leadership post has suddenly re-emerged in the scramble following House Speaker John Boehner’s resignation,” the Washington Post reports.

“A movement to pull Gowdy into the race for majority leader began to rapidly pick up momentum Tuesday morning… Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.) said the interest in Gowdy is rising because the current candidates for majority leader — House Budget Chairman Tom Price (R-GA) and current GOP Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) — are fighting a hotly contested battle and some members may like to see another voice enter who could emerge as a consensus pick.”

Politico: “House GOP leadership races are conducted by secret ballot, so there’s an extra level of intrigue that goes along with these races. Scalise and Price have locked up support, but there’s nothing stopping a lawmaker from reversing themselves and abandoning their commitment when it comes times to vote.”

Trump’s Wealth Estimated at $4.5 Billion

Forbes: “Trump’s valuation this year holds extra importance, of course, due to his audacious second act: his highly unlikely–but no longer inconceivable–path to the presidency. Trump has filed statements claiming he’s worth at least $10 billion or, as he put in a press release, TEN BILLION DOLLARS (capitalization his). After interviewing more than 80 sources and devoting unprecedented resources to valuing a single fortune, we’re going with a figure less than half that — $4.5 billion, albeit still the highest figure we’ve ever had for him.”

Shutdown Averted, But Only for Three Months

Stan Collender: “The Boehner resignation makes it hard to develop a realistic scenario that results in a government shutdown when the fiscal year begins this Thursday. If everything goes as expected, after the Senate adopts a clean CR early this week and sends it across the Capitol, Boehner will bring it up for a vote and the House will pass it easily, thanks to substantial support from Democrats. As a result, the government shutdown that looked so likely a week ago will be averted.”

“But it will be a very different story when this soon-to-be-passed CR expires in December. All the factors that make a shutdown this week so improbable will make it far more likely to happen near the end of the year.”

Can Democrats Take Advantage of the GOP’s Self-Imolation?

Charlie Cook says that it “seems like, in very dif­fer­ent ways, both parties are at risk of self-de­struct­ing. Re­pub­lic­ans seem hell-bent on com­mit­ting self-im­mol­a­tion on both the pres­id­en­tial and con­gres­sion­al levels. Demo­crats, who pretty much settled on a pres­id­en­tial nom­in­ee early on, now find their front-run­ner hope­lessly mired in (de­pend­ing on your per­spect­ive) a scan­dal or a con­tro­versy, one that is un­likely to be re­solved any­time soon and has raised le­git­im­ate ques­tions about how elect­able she’d be.”

“For Hil­lary Clin­ton, even the best-case scen­ario looks pretty grim: This mess over her State De­part­ment emails drags on for months, with a drip, drip, drip of rev­el­a­tions that will keep her and her cam­paign off-bal­ance, off-mes­sage, and con­stantly re­act­ing to events; then that it peters out early next year, with no charges filed, but her im­age and stand­ing in opin­ion polls in aw­ful shape, with no pos­it­ive en­ergy left in her cam­paign.”

Alabama Governor Agrees to Divorce Terms

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley’s (R) office said the governor and First Lady Dianne Bentley had reached an agreement ending their 50-year marriage, the Montgomery Advertiser reports.

“Details of the settlement were not immediately available. Bentley said he had asked for the records of the divorce case to be unsealed, though it remained off-limits as of Monday afternoon.”

Trump Not Concerned About Tightening Polls

Donald Trump told NBC News that he’s not worried about some recent polls showing his lead in the GOP presidential race narrowing.

Said Trump: “This is going to be an ebb and flow. How can I continue to lead by such wide margins? It’s an ebb and flow, but I’m leading every single poll and most of them by a substantial number.”

He added: “If I think for some reason it’s not going to work, then I go back to my businesses.”