Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) announced in the Wall Street Journal that he will be leaving Congress at the end of the year “to serve America in new ways.”
Monmouth Poll: “In an open-ended question asking Republican voters whom they would like to see as the GOP nominee for president, 53% name Trump.”
“This top-of-mind preference has steadily climbed from a year ago when it stood at just 26%. In a subsequent question listing seven candidates in the race at the time the poll was taken, Trump’s support stands at 58%. Far back in the pack are Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (18%), former U.N. Ambassador and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (12%), entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy (4%), and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (2%).”
Thomas Edsall: “The predictive power of horse-race polling a year from the presidential election is weak at best. The Biden campaign can take some comfort in that. But what recent surveys do reveal is that the coalition that put Joe Biden in the White House in the first place is nowhere near as strong as it was four years ago.”
“These danger signs include fraying support among core constituencies, including young voters, Black voters and Hispanic voters, and the decline, if not the erasure, of traditional Democratic advantages in representing the interests of the middle class and speaking for the average voter.”
“Any of these on their own might not be cause for alarm, but taken together they present a dangerous situation for Biden.”
Said Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg: “This is grim.”
“In a legal settlement Wednesday, the 10 Republicans who signed official-looking paperwork falsely purporting Donald Trump won Wisconsin in 2020 have agreed to withdraw their inaccurate filings, acknowledge Joe Biden won the presidency and not serve as presidential electors in 2024 or in any election where Trump is on the ballot,” the Washington Post reports.
“Just how hard did some Republican members of Congress work to keep President Donald Trump in office after his 2020 election loss? A court case is providing a few tantalizing clues,” the AP reports.
“Snippets and short summaries of texts and emails sent by Rep. Scott Perry of Pennsylvania, a top Trump ally, have emerged publicly for the first time as part of a court filing that was unsealed — perhaps inadvertently — by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., as part of a legal battle with federal prosecutors.”
“The messages reveal more about what investigators want to know, what actions Perry took in the weeks after the election and where Perry may fit in the web of Trump loyalists who were central to his bid to remain in power.”
“If you have social media that is dominated by algorithms that pull people down these rabbit holes that are a bit like pitcher plants, these algorithms, they are the digital equivalent of AR-15s. They ought to be banned, they really ought to be banned. It’s an abuse of the public forum.”
— Al Gore, quoted by The Messenger.
“Florida GOP Chair Christian Ziegler trained members of his wife’s right-wing advocacy group Moms for Liberty on how to combat negative press during a June media training session,” Rolling Stone reports.
“As of last week, Ziegler is under investigation regarding allegations of sexual assault brought forth by a woman involved in a long-term ménage à trois with him and his wife, Moms for Liberty co-founder Bridget Ziegler.”
Said Ziegler: “Never apologize. Ever. This is my view. Other people have different views on this. I think apologizing makes you weak.”
“Democrats are increasingly acknowledging that pairing a bipartisan border deal with new Ukraine aid is unraveling for one major reason: Most in the party never wanted this negotiation in the first place,” Politico reports.
“While key House factions like the Progressive and Hispanic Caucuses signaled more than a month ago they would oppose any immigration policy changes in a foreign aid bill, Democratic leaders and the rank-and-file in the Senate gave the bipartisan negotiators space to work out a deal. On Wednesday, it will become crystal clear that hasn’t worked out, as the GOP is expected to filibuster President Joe Biden’s foreign aid request because it lacks sufficient border security policies.”
“And as they assess the wreckage of the flailing negotiations to link the border with Ukraine, many Democrats now believe the talks were not set up to succeed from the beginning. While a growing number of Democrats acknowledge that surging migration at the border demands action, most of the party views the border negotiations demanded by Republicans with disinterest or even scorn.”
“The government of Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni formally told China it would exit the Belt and Road Initiative, dealing a fresh blow to Beijing’s ambition to expand the massive investment program,” Bloomberg reports.
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. said that he traveled on Jeffrey Epstein’s private jet twice, but he never knew of any “nefarious issues,” The Messenger reports.
Edward Luce: “The only decent insurance is based on the worst-case scenario. On that basis, we have to assume that Trump’s victory would be taken as a green light by Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping to make big advances in their agendas. The US would pull out of Nato. Ukraine would be left to its own devices. Allies and friends in Asia would have to adjust to a world in which the US no longer underwrites their security. Meanwhile, the US would abandon efforts to tackle global warming, uphold human rights and at least pay lip service to the rule-based international order. Trump’s plan for a 10 per cent tariff on all imports would make the open world trading system a distant memory.”
“The most worrying hedge against Washington’s exit from Pax Americana would be a rush for the nuclear threshold. Among America’s allies, Japan, South Korea and Australia are each technically capable of going nuclear within months. It would be politically harder for Japan to cross that line given its unique history as the only target of nuclear attack. But the de facto removal of America’s nuclear umbrella would probably outweigh that moral legacy.”
Four Republican legislators in New Hampshire will introduce a bill that would ban abortion at “15 days” gestational age, NBC News reports.
“It seems like New York’s 3rd Congressional district is destined for drama,” Politico reports.
“Following the extraordinary saga surrounding George Santos, one of the top two GOP favorites to replace the recently-ousted representative is a registered Democrat — despite having twice been elected as a Republican to the Nassau County Legislature.”
Chris Christie’s niece, Shannon Epstein, was formally charged after being kicked off a flight last year and “drunkenly biting, kicking and spitting on deputies who tried to arrest her,” the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports.
While fighting with the deputies Epstein allegedly said: “Do you know who I am? I’m Chris Christie’s daughter, and you’re so fucked. You will lose your job over this shit. I know Donald Trump.”
She also reportedly asked a Hispanic family seated nearby if they were smuggling cocaine.
Semafor: “The former congressman was expelled last Friday for a variety of sins and alleged crimes, including overcharging the credit card of a colleague’s mother. He has, in the intervening four days, stumbled across a path to making a living that dwarfs the $174,000 salary he earned as a member of Congress.”
“In fact, Santos said — and screenshots and the CEO of Cameo confirmed — that he has lined up more than that sum in his first 48 hours on the platform. People pay between $200 and $300 to Santos for various flavors of communication.”
“Prosecutors in the Georgia election subversion case against former President Donald Trump have officially listed former Vice President Mike Pence as one of the witnesses who could be called to testify at trial,” CNN reports.
“Pence, who has appeared before a federal grand jury as part of special counsel Jack Smith’s probe into Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election, has not been considered a major part of criminal proceedings in Georgia.”