Melania Trump, whose husband is known for the barbs he hurls on Twitter, said that adults should be “encouraging positive habits on social media” as an example for children, The Hill reports.
Archives for February 2018
A new CNN poll finds 72% of Americans are concerned about foreign government interference in U.S. elections generally, including 90% of Democrats, 68% of independents and 53% of Republicans.
Meanwhile, 60% say they are not confident President Trump is doing enough to prevent foreign countries from influencing future American elections.
White House chief of staff John Kelly “has grown increasingly frustrated with Ivanka Trump since he entered the West Wing last July, CNN reports.
Kelly has remarked privately that Ivanka Trump is just “playing government” and has largely brushed aside her agenda, once disregarding her child tax credit as “a pet project.”
“The Anti-Defamation League is reporting a 57 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in the U.S. last year, the highest tally that the Jewish civil rights group has counted in more than two decades,” the AP reports.
Coming in May: The Assault on Intelligence: American National Security in an Age of Lies by Gen. Michael Hayden.
From the introduction: “There is no effort here to build a case for or against collusion. But whatever emerges from Robert Mueller’s investigation, it should not obscure the bigger story, which is still not adequately understood, and which is in a way this book’s climactic case study, namely that Russia has been actively seeking to damage the fabric of American democracy and that the Trump Administration’s glandular aversion to even looking at this squarely, much less mounting a concerted response to it, is an appalling national security lapse.”
“Indeed, there is clear evidence of what I would call convergence, the convergence of a mutually reinforcing swirl of Presidential tweets and statements, Russian influenced social media, alt right websites and talk radio, Russian ‘white’ press like RT and even mainstream U.S. media like Fox News—all of whom do things for their own purposes, but all of which fits nicely with Russian purposes to sharpen and sustain divisions here.”
Politico: “As dire as the situation seems for Republicans, the elements of a skin-of-their-teeth escape are coming into focus. Beginning in late December, both the generic congressional ballot and Trump’s approval ratings began ticking upward. These numbers, apparent across almost all polls, were enough to curtail growing talk of a Democratic wave election on the horizon.”
“The snapback in the polls may be short-lived. Over the past two weeks, the generic ballot numbers have moved slightly in a Democratic direction. The Republican uptick in the polls could represent a sign that the president and his party are beginning to get credit for the economy and tax cuts, or it could be simply a dead cat bounce. Either way, if the party can keep the generic ballot deficit under about 9 percentage points and the president’s approval ratings can remain in the mid-40s, the GOP is in the range of where it needs to be to have a fighting chance of holding its House majority.”
The Guardian: “A senior career official in the US Department of Housing and Urban Development has alleged that she was demoted and replaced with a Donald Trump appointee after refusing to break the law by funding an expensive redecoration of Ben Carson’s office.”
“Helen Foster said she was told ‘$5,000 will not even buy a decent chair’ after informing her bosses this was the legal price limit for improvements to the HUD secretary’s suite at the department’s Washington headquarters.”
“Voters were undeterred by the 2016 cries of alarm from Democrats — and some Republicans — that Donald Trump was unqualified to be commander in chief, but a group of Democrats is betting Trump’s record in office will push national security issues to the fore in the 2018 midterms and the next presidential election,” the Washington Post reports.
“A group of mostly young veterans of the Barack Obama administration and the Hillary Clinton 2016 presidential campaign is launching a national security political strike force aimed at countering Trump and Republicans.”
“Republicans are fretting that a front-runner for an Arizona congressional seat — a married minister involved in a sexting scandal — will pull a Roy Moore and hand the seat to Democrats if he wins Tuesday’s special-election primary,” Politico reports.
“The seat vacated by former GOP Rep. Trent Franks — who resigned last December over his own sex scandal — should be an easy hold for Republicans.”
“But a bombshell report of nude photos and text messages exchanged between the candidate, former state Sen. Steve Montenegro, and a legislative staffer — published just a week before the election — has left GOP operatives worried that ‘it could be Alabama all over again,’ said Shiree Verdone, who ran Arizona Sen. John McCain’s 2010 Senate race.”
“A group led by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder sued Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) over his refusal to call special elections to fill two open legislative seats,” the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports.
“Fresh off a victory in a Senate special election last month, Wisconsin Democrats have demanded that Walker call these two additional special elections and give their party an opportunity to notch more wins.”
“With Democrats seeing an opportunity — and Republicans seeing a threat — the controversy over the special election has taken on a strong political cast.”
“In a historic decision, the Missouri House formally launched an investigation Monday that could lead to the impeachment and ouster of Gov. Eric Greitens (R),” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
“House Speaker Todd Richardson (R) named seven members to a special committee that will lead the unprecedented probe of a Missouri chief executive.”
A new Public Policy Polling survey finds Jason Crow (D) leading Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) in Colorado’s 6th congressional district, 44% to 39%.
Colorado Pols: “Coffman supporters are furiously trying to downplay these numbers based on polling metrics, sample size, yada yada yada. But any complaints about this particular poll should not overshadow one important note: This is the first public poll we can recall showing anyone leading Coffman since he was first elected in 2008.”
A new Urban Institute report finds that by 2019, 6.4 million fewer Americans are expected to have health insurance as a result of the GOP’s decision to get rid of the individual health care mandate and other policy changes made by President Trump.
Axios: “The report is the first serious study to analyze the combined effects of several major health policy changes made under the Trump administration. Note that the effect is far off from what we’d see under a full repeal of the Affordable Care Act, but represents the real-world significance of the pieces they were able to kill.”
Chris McDaniel (R) is expected to announce later this week that he will wage a 2018 primary challenge against Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS), Politico reports.
“McDaniel’s plans have been the subject of speculation for months. With the 80-year-old Sen. Thad Cochran’s (R-MS) health in decline, many believed that McDaniel would run for the seat should it become vacant.”
A new Harvard CAPS-Harris survey finds that 54% believe that the mainstream media treats President Trump fairly.
However, there is a big split bust on political identification. Nearly 80% of Republicans say the media is unfair to Trump, while 84% of Democrats and 55% of independents believe the president gets a fair shake from the press.
On the flip side, 59% say Trump treats the mainstream media unfairly.
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