Outnumbered - Tuesday, July 21On today's episode, Ari Fleischer is 'Outnumbered' as further discussion happens about the next coronavirus aid bill,
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On the roster: GOP still stuck on stimulus plan – Trump leans into bogus claim in ominous new ad – Biden tries to catch up on TV spending – House GOP getting spanked on fundraising – And now he’s ‘regsitered’ in jail
GOP STILL STUCK ON STIMULUS PLAN
Bloomberg: “Senate Republicans and the Trump administration are struggling to reach a consensus on the contours of another stimulus plan, putting at risk the White House goal of enacting a package by the end of next week. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White Chief of Staff Mark Meadows are returning to the Capitol Wednesday after an initial round of talks with Senate Republicans ended without a clear outline or any lessening of GOP resistance to President Donald Trump’s desire for a payroll tax holiday. Mnuchin and Meadows also met Tuesday with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. But the two Democrats said there can be no real negotiations on virus relief legislation that can pass the House and Senate until Republicans can agree on their own plan. Meadows conceded that there was some distance to go before trying to bridge the gap between the roughly $1 trillion plan Republicans are trying to craft and the $3.5 trillion that Democrats have on the table.”
Senate GOP looks at extending unemployment boost as deadline nears – WSJ: Senate Republicans are discussing the possibility of extending a $600 weekly supplement to unemployment benefits on a short-term basis to give lawmakers more time to negotiate a long-term solution, according to lawmakers. The Republican discussions come as the federal jobless benefit is set to expire on July 31, leaving lawmakers just days to try to reach either a permanent or interim solution. Republicans said the details of any possible extension remained unclear. Sen. Rob Portman (R., Ohio) said Congress should try to pass a full package before the deadline instead of adopting interim measures. ‘I know there’s discussions about it, but I don’t know what the decision is. I think we ought to force ourselves to get our work done by the end of next week and do the entire package,’ Mr. Portman said.”
Pelosi taunts, calls it ‘the Trump virus’ – RCP: “In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said the nation is suffering from the ‘Trump virus,’ or the results of President Trump’s handling of the coronavirus. ‘I think with the President’s comments today, he recognized the mistakes he has made by now embracing mask-wearing and the recognition this is not a hoax, it is a pandemic that has gotten worse before it will get better because of his inaction. And, in fact, clearly, it is the Trump virus,’ Pelosi said on CNN. ‘…if he had said months ago, let’s wear masks and let’s not – let’s socially distance instead of rallies and whatever they were, then more people would have followed his lead,’ the Speaker said. ‘He’s the President of the United States. I think a good deal of what we have suffered is clearly the Trump virus’…”
THE RULEBOOK: WHO PUT THE TURTLE ON THE FENCEPOST?
“It is a matter both of wonder and regret, that those who raise so many objections against the new Constitution should never call to mind the defects of that which is to be exchanged for it.” – James Madison, Federalist No. 38
TIME OUT: WE’LL TAKE ‘ADORED OCTOGENARIANS’ FOR $100
Fox News: “Alex Trebek, the iconic host of ‘Jeopardy!,’ turns 80 on Wednesday. The Canada native has been hosting the trivia game show for more than three decades, since 1984. …Trebek has won the hearts of Americans through his humor, wit and occasional sass. To see some of those moments and to celebrate his 80th birthday, here are five of Trebek’s greatest ‘Jeopardy!’ moments. In 2005, during the ‘Ultimate Tournament of Champions,’ Trebek came onstage in knee-high socks, a long button-down shirt and jacket — but no pants. … In 2010, Trebek sang the answers to one category — using auto-tune. … According to a 2017 report from Vulture, Trebek has also rapped through several ‘Jeopardy!’ categories including ‘Let’s Rap, Kids!’ and ‘MC Trebek.’ … Trebek proved himself to be a prankster in 1997 when he and Pat Sajak swapped game shows, according to radio station KLUV. … In 2016, Trebek was also quick to poke fun at a contestant’s music preference during the short interview portion of the show. Trebek asked the contestant, Susan Cole, about her favorite type of music: nerdcore.”
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NATIONAL HEAD-TO-HEAD AVERAGE
Trump: 40.6 percent
Biden: 51.8 percent
Size of lead: Biden by 11.2 points
Change from one week ago: Biden ↑ 0.4 points, Trump ↑ 0.4 points
[Average includes: Fox News: Trump 41% – Biden 49%; ABC/WaPo: Trump 44% – Biden 54; Quinnipiac University: Trump 37% – Biden 52%; NBC News/WSJ: Trump 40% – Biden 51%; Monmouth University: Trump 41% – Biden 53%.]
BATTLEGROUND POWER RANKINGS
(270 electoral votes needed to win)
Toss-up: (109 electoral votes): Wisconsin (10), Ohio (18), Florida (29), Arizona (11), Pennsylvania (20), North Carolina (15), Iowa (6)
Lean R/Likely R: (180 electoral votes)
Lean D/Likely D: (249 electoral votes)
TRUMP JOB PERFORMANCE
Average approval: 40.8 percent
Average disapproval: 56.4 percent
Net Score: -15.6 points
Change from one week ago: ↑ 1.2. points
[Average includes: Fox News: 45% approve – 54% disapprove; ABC News/WaPo: 40% approve – 58% disapprove; Quinnipiac University: 36% approve – 60% disapprove; NBC News/WSJ: 42% approve – 56% disapprove; Monmouth University: 41% approve – 54% disapprove.]
GOT A WILD PITCH? READY TO THROW A FASTBALL?
Our favorite part of every edition of the Halftime Report newsletter is our “From the Bleachers” section where Politics Editor Chris Stirewalt responds to readers’ complaints, compliments, suggestions and tries to answer the questions voters have about government, politics and elections. Now we’ve brought it to video on demand thanks to Fox Nation. Each Wednesday and Friday, Producer Brianna McClelland will put Chris to the test with your questions. He’ll do his best to answer and, along with Brianna, try to track down the answers they don’t know. Sign up for the Fox Nation streaming service here and send your best questions to [email protected]
TRUMP LEANS INTO BOGUS CLAIM IN OMINOUS NEW AD
NYT: “The ad simulates a break-in at the home of an older woman and ends with her being attacked while she waits on hold for a 911 call, as shadowy, dark intruders flicker in the background. So far, the campaign has spent almost $20 million over the last 20 days on that ad and two other similar ones, more than Mr. Biden has spent on his total television budget in the same time frame, and a relatively large sum for this stage of the race. … While Mr. Biden has walked a careful line and said explicitly that he doesn’t support defunding police departments, the Trump campaign has continued to claim otherwise.”
Trump to send forces to Chicago, Albuquerque – Bloomberg: “President Donald Trump is expected to announce Wednesday he will expand a federal law enforcement operation to Chicago and Albuquerque, New Mexico, setting up a potential showdown with state and local leaders. Trump is expected to announce the move at a White House event Wednesday afternoon, according to a person familiar with the matter. Trump has threatened to send agents to major U.S. cities led by Democrats that are dealing with violent crime and vandalism of federal buildings, in an appeal to his conservative base ahead of the 2020 election. The push has set off a nationwide controversy over the use of federal forces in cities, oftentimes over the objection of local leaders.”
BIDEN TRIES TO CATCH UP ON TV SPENDING
Reuters: “Joe Biden’s presidential campaign on Tuesday announced $15 million in new spending on advertising, as the former vice president looks to capitalize on his polling advantage over Republican President Donald Trump ahead of the Nov. 3 election. The ad buy marks a sharp increase in spending by Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, who launched his first major advertising blitz in the second half of June but has seen a dramatic uptick in fundraising in recent months. The Biden campaign said it would spend the same amount in the next week as it had in the past five weeks on television, radio, digital and print ads, including in Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – states Trump won in 2016 but which Biden hopes to capture in November.”
Dems defer to Biden on platform – Bloomberg: “The Democrats’ official platform will likely call for universal health care, major investments in clean energy and a recasting of the criminal justice system, but will steer away from many of the main policy proposals advanced by the party’s progressive wing, according to a draft of the document. The 80-page draft, obtained by Bloomberg News on Tuesday night, largely hews to Joe Biden’s policy stances and mirrors many of the recommendations proposed by the joint task forces formed by allies of Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders. After Sanders dropped out of the race, he and Biden formed policy groups in six areas to bridge policy gaps between the more progressive Vermont senator and the more moderate former vice president. Yet the task forces and the draft platform do not call for some of the progressives’ most sought-after policies such as the Green New Deal or Medicare for All.”
HOUSE GOP GETTING SPANKED ON FUNDRAISING
WashEx: “The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has amassed a $94 million war chest and led the National Republican Congressional Committee by a massive $33 million in cash on hand as of June 30, positioning Democrats to withstand a vigorous fall challenge from the GOP in the battle for House control. The DCCC raised $17 million in June, capping a second-quarter fundraising period in which the House Democratic campaign arm collected $39.3 million and boosted an existing cash lead over the NRCC. The House Republican campaign arm raised a healthy $13.6 million in June. But the NRCC’s overall fundraising for April, May, and June, $35.5 million, fell short of the DCCC’s total. ‘House Democrats are on offense, and our grassroots fundraising puts Republicans even further back on their heels,’ DCCC spokesman Robyn Patterson said in a statement.”
Kraushaar: Not so sweet on the fruited plain – National Journal: “The Senate race in Kansas is a microcosm of the political woes facing Republicans these days. It features an ideologically extreme, Trumpian candidate; a party institutionally incapable of tending to its best interests; and a Democratic challenger trying to exploit the GOP’s utter collapse in the suburbs as she tries to become the first Democratic senator elected from the Sunflower State in nearly 90 years. The primary, scheduled for Aug. 4, is the latest high-stakes test of whether Republican voters will cater to their base’s worst excesses or nominate a mainstream candidate capable of winning a solidly Republican state. What’s most remarkable about the contest is that the so-called GOP establishment, after raising warnings about former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, has been incapable of rallying behind an electable alternative.”
Ocasio-Cortez blows off Yoho’s effort at apology – AP: “A Republican congressman offered an apology Wednesday for the ‘abrupt manner’ he used in a verbal confrontation with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez but denied aiming a sexist slur at her. Ocasio-Cortez rejected her colleague’s words, saying they were ‘not an apology’ and what she heard was a vulgar slur. Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., made his remarks on the House floor a day after the freshman New York lawmaker said he’d angrily harangued her outside the Capitol over her linkage of joblessness and some recent crimes. … In a series of tweets, Ocasio-Cortez rejected Yoho’s remarks, saying he hadn’t mentioned her name or specified what he was apologizing for. ‘Republican responds to calling a colleague ‘disgusting’ & a ‘f—ing b*tch’ w/ ‘I cannot apologize for my passion’ and blaming others,’ she wrote. ‘I will not teach my nieces and young people watching that this an apology, and what they should learn to accept. Yoho is refusing responsibility.’”
What did Americans say about the 1919 pandemic? – Miami Herald
Esper worries about military look of Trump’s riot squads – Stars and Stripes
Pergram: Voters will likely remember which party they believe handled health, science best – Fox News
Senate set to punt on Oct.1 budget deadline – Roll Call
U.S.-China cold war heating up – WSJ
Gaetz faces questions about use of funds – Politico
AUDIBLE: SOMETIMES EVEN MORE THAN OCCASIONALLY
“…as soon as that mindset takes hold what you get is a whole lot of people who are afraid to say anything that everyone else isn’t already saying and that’s dangerous for our business. You have to be able to screw up occasionally.” – Matt Taibbi, a journalist famous for his attacks on monied elites for Rolling Stone, explaining to Politico why he is part of the growing backlash against “cancel culture” in America’s newsrooms.
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AND NOW HE’S ‘REGSITERED’ IN JAIL
AP: “A Long Island criminal defendant tried faking his death to avoid a jail sentence, but the phony death certificate his lawyer submitted had a glaring spelling error that made it a dead giveaway for a fraud, prosecutors said Tuesday. Robert Berger, 25, of Huntington, New York, now faces up to four years in prison if convicted in the alleged scheme. … Scheduled to be sentenced to a year in jail last October on the theft-related charges, Berger fled the state, while taking steps to convince his then-lawyer, prosecutors and the judge that he had killed himself — including allegedly using his fiancé to pass along a bogus death certificate, prosecutors said. At first glance, Berger’s purported death certificate looked like an official document issued by the New Jersey Department of Health, Vital Statistics and Registry, but there was one big problem: Registry was spelled ‘Regsitry,’ prosecutors said. There were also inconsistencies in the font type and size that raised suspicions, they said.”
AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“It is time the world recognized that we are not God. America today is the closest the world has ever seen to God. But, alas, the gap remains great. We are not quite omnipotent, and we cannot be ubiquitous.” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) writing in Time magazine on Aug. 24, 2003.
Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.