All five living former US presidents are teaming up to urge people to donate to the recovery and relief efforts for Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The "One America Appeal," as it's called, will launch Thursday evening with a public-service announcement…
Former Indiana Supreme Court Justice Ted Boehm puts it perfectly: “There’s not a single thing that would do more to improve the state of our republic,” he told me, “than to eliminate gerrymandered political districts.” The benefits are clear and would be sweeping. Extreme partisans on both sides of the aisle would see their influence diminish at the Statehouse. No longer would a huge majority of lawmakers worry most and perhaps only about the most partisan of primary voters. “There is the matter of fairness,” Boehm said. In Indiana, state Rep. Jerry Torr, R-Carmel, has long led a push to create an independent body charged with drawing legislative districts every 10 years. Republicans loved the idea a decade ago when Democrats were benefiting from gerrymandered districts they’d used their majorities to draw. But what really matters is the long-term effect and having a system that is fair.” Backed by groups such as the League of Women Voters of Indiana, Torr once again introduced a redistricting bill earlier this year. His brief, crafted with local attorney Joseph H. Yeager, Jr. and others, bemoans the current system's emphasis on partisan primaries, as so many districts are safely held by one party or the other. Should we have a system in which partisan insiders protect their seats and their majorities with ever-advancing tools that make it easy to craft the districts they want? Or should we push politics out of this issue?
Rarely does the victim of a crime first hire a private investigator whose findings later form the basis of government conclusions. He has insisted for well over a year that the Russians did not provide him with the DNC emails. When it was discovered that the emails had been compromised, then-DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz weirdly refused to allow forensic detectives from the FBI to examine the DNC server to probe the evidence of the theft. It has since been disclosed that Comey offered that conclusion before he had even interviewed Clinton. That inversion suggests that Comey had assumed that whatever he found out about Clinton would not change the reality that the Obama administration would probably drop the inquiry anyway -- so Comey made the necessary ethical adjustments. Instead, Trump's anguished letter complained about Comey's private assurances that the president was not under FBI investigation, which were offered at about the same time a winking-and-nodding Comey would not confirm that reality to the press, thus leaving the apparently deliberate impression that a compromised president was in legal jeopardy. Antifa rioters in Charlottesville were praised by progressives for violently confronting a few dozen creepy white supremacists, Klansmen, and neo-Nazis. Yet Antifa's use of violence was compared perversely by some progressives to American soldiers storming the beaches on D-Day. It was recently disclosed that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security had warned the Obama administration in 2016 that Antifa was a domestic terrorist organization that aimed to incite violence during street protests. Doubts about official narratives of the DNC leaks and the errant behavior of James Comey and misinformation about the violent extremists of Antifa illustrate media bias -- not to mention entrenched government bureaucracies that are either incompetent, ethically compromised or completely politicized.
CNN got a first look at Hillary Clinton's new book "What Happened," in which she provides a detailed account of the 2016 presidential election. CNN's Jeff Zeleny reports.
Washington (CNN)After an endless summer of crisis, President Donald Trump's September isn't looking much better. Trump's threats to shut down the government if Congress does not finance a border wall that he promised Mexico would pay for angered many of his fellow Republicans. While such moves and threats honor campaign promises, they have deepened the estrangement between Trump and senior Republican leaders in a way that could make it more difficult for him to pass key agenda items, including tax reform. Trump said at a tax reform event in West Virginia last week. With his relations with fellow Republicans compromised, the President has also been beset by turmoil in his own political inner circle. While Trump adjusts to the Kelly era, other senior officials have followed senior congressional leaders and even US foes like North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in showing that they are not cowed by the President. Such a maneuver could defuse a showdown with House conservatives over the debt limit. Still, there are also signs the White House may also be looking to put off a showdown over wall funding for a few months. Some Hill Republicans believe Trump will not insist that a likely short-term funding bill to keep the government open until December contain cash for the wall. The most he can hope for might be escaping the year without a damaging government shutdown, with some kind of tax cut or reform legislation passed, and with his most prominent achievement, the installation of new Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, to celebrate.
Labor unions are trying to take back politics in the Midwest. On Labor Day — designated a federal holiday in 1894 to honor America’s labor movement — at least eight Democratic candidates will hold rallies in five Midwest cities to tell workers just how far the country has veered from its pro-labor roots. In Iowa, Republicans rolled back an increase in the minimum wage in March. Each candidate will center their campaigns on their support for a $15 minimum wage, progressive health care, and pro-union policies. Cathy Glasson, a registered nurse and union leader in Iowa who will officially announce after Labor Day her campaign for governor in 2018, said that before this year, she had never considered running for elected office. We had raised the minimum wage in five counties in Iowa and this administration literally took money out of the pockets of Iowans — 85,000 Iowans were affected by the rollback here.” Like other first-time politicians throwing themselves into 2018, Glasson has been a union member for decades and will prioritize the need for more American workers to join unions and employee associations. One of the country’s largest labor unions, SEIU and its Fight for $15 arm — a national campaign to raise the minimum wage to $15 — will announce Monday a push to elect labor-friendly candidates in 2018 in the Midwest states where unions once held tremendous power. Republicans in Wisconsin have gerrymandered the state so they do not fear losing their seats, Bryce noted, but the union movement is going to latch onto policies that he believes will resonate with voters across party lines, like wages and health care. “It’s the right thing to do but it’s also going to help create jobs,” he said. “By collecting and pooling union members’ money, we are a force to be reckoned with in politics, and so the intentional attack on unions in the state of Iowa and the Midwest and beyond is intentional to silent the voice of everyday workers that need to have a voice in politics.” Bryce agreed that if unions do not get involved now, the Trump administration could decimate the labor movement to a point of no return.
Democrats hit the road in Iowa to win back Washington. DES MOINES — A growing number of Democratic lawmakers who are increasingly concerned that their party might fall short again in elections next year are on the road this summer to buck up beleaguered party activists and recruit new candidates. The Republican National Committee outraised its Democratic counterpart by more than $6 million in July. “I’m not here to test waters,” she told a group of Des Moines-area Democrats as she explained why she was visiting the state for the first time. “I am here to do what so many people around this country are doing right now — being more involved than ever before in our party. I’m learning to be a better listener.” After making a stop to meet with a potential candidate in Omaha, Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., 36, traveled across the river into Pottawattamie County, where he headlined an event for local Democrats that local leaders said drew a bigger-than-expected crowd partly because activists were curious to meet a face they had seen frequently on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC. He plans to instruct his campaign team to also work with Iowa and New Hampshire Democrats to make gains in next year’s midterm elections — a move that he thinks can help him dispel the notion that a little-known House lawmaker can’t win the presidency. “The reason members of the House do not become president is because they don’t run for it,” he said. “It’s hard to become president if you don’t run for it.” Other Democrats thinking about running for president are only beginning to make overtures to party activists. Is it Nancy?” Meng said, referring to Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez, Schumer and Pelosi.
Hanabusa to primary Hawaii governor. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-Hawaii) on Friday announced her plans to run for Hawaii governor. She will challenge Democratic incumbent Gov. David Ige (D). Her entrance to the race had been widely speculated, in part due to her sampled up fundraising efforts this year. “I am fourth generation from Waianae. I have had the honor and privilege of serving a community who was forgotten and ignored by many," Hanabusa said in a statement. "I know what it means to be focused and steadfast of the challenges and I know the difficulties in bringing about major changes," she said. She said she has gained the skill set and experience through her career to tackle the issues facing the state. "I believe we need experienced leadership to continue the Hawaii that I care so deeply about and love,” she said.
Susan Greenhalgh, election specialist with the Verified Voting Foundation, talks with Joy-Ann Reid about the weakness of U.S. election infrastructure, whether to hacking or simple malfunction. » Subscribe to MSNBC: http://on.msnbc.com/SubscribeTomsnbc About: MSNBC is the premier destination for in-depth analysis…
Election 2018 Vermont Republicans Steer Clear of National Politics at Fundraiser. Phil Scott, former governor Jim Douglas and New Hampshire Gov. Jokes about New Hampshire vs. Vermont were big: Why is Vermont's maple syrup sweeter? You have more tree-huggers, Sununu quipped. And that came during a half-hearted attempt at a joke about the three governors meeting in the basement of Trump Tower. Otherwise, the three speakers emphasized the importance of supporting local Republican candidates. They talked up a new party-building campaign called Unity 76, through which the GOP aims to claim a majority in the 150-member Vermont House. Sununu was the one speaker to talk about out-of-state GOP politicians. Sununu said of Maine's Republican governor, who's known for outlandish comments. Other Democratic challengers are expected.