Trump tops Bush in national poll of Republicans

Welcome to your campaign trail guide, a daily tour through the twists and turns of the 2016 presidential campaign. It's Tuesday, July 14 and here’s what we’re watching:

  • The talk on the trail is about Iran and the landmark nuclear agreement President Obama announced early Tuesday. Republican candidates are lining up solidly against the deal, with little variation. While early reaction shows Democratic support.
  • Hillary Rodham Clinton will likely to be asked about the agreement Tuesday when she heads to the Hill for a round of meetings with Democratic lawmakers. 
  • The deal is also likely to overshadow  Obama 's plan to tout his criminal justice reform effort at a meeting of the NAACP in Philadelphia. He's already pushed back his scheduled start time for the address.
  • On Day 2 of his campaign, Scott Walker  is due to take his show on the road. The hog-loving Wisconsin governor's first stop is a Harley-Davidson dealer in Las Vegas.
  • Jeb Bush , meanwhile, is wrapping up a two-day tour of Iowa and heading to Southern California for a private fundraiser.


Rand Paul reacts to Iran deal, calls it 'unacceptable'

Clinton courts her former colleagues

(Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Tuesday, returning to her former workplace to shore up support for her presidential campaign.

Although Clinton the nuclear deal with Iran announced Tuesday morning dominated talk in Washington, lawmakers who participated in the meetings said Clinton managed to hit other topics -- including immigration, her economic plan, student debt and racial profiling. She also appeared to hit the key themes of her stump speech.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) said Clinton's speech to the House Democratic Caucus ¿ her first of the day ¿ began with a focus on her role as a mother and grandmother, describing her work in politics as an extension of those roles. He said she spoke without notes and was warmly received.

“If she does over the next few months what she did in there she will win convincingly,” Israel said.

Clinton also met with Senate Democrats and the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

The latter is a tough crowd for Clinton, who has struggled to win over liberals in her party. Her top rival for that support, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-V.T.), also spoke at the Capitol on Tuesday and noted his respect for Clinton but also a laundry list of issues on which he says they disagree.

Rep: Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said Clinton got a warm reception among progressives, but that he is not prepared to make a choice.

"They're two awesome progressives," he said.

Though Clinton said she was glad to be reunited with old colleagues ¿ she represented New York in the Senate for eight years - there was one aspect of the return she enjoyed less. As the former senator walked across the Capitol, she was pursued through narrow hallways by a pack of reporters shouting questions on Iran. She did not respond.

“Do you miss this atmosphere,” one asked.

“No,” she responded with a laugh.

Trump tops Bush in national poll

After weeks of stirring up controversy and eating up airtime, celebrity candidate Donald Trump is leading the Republican field in the race for president, according to a new survey.

The Suffolk University/USA Today poll found 17% of likely Republican primary and caucus participants named Trump as their top choice, compared to 14% who named former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

The poll was a national survey conducted between July 9 and July 12, just as Trump was making headlines for casting Mexican immigrants as "rapists" and losing millions of dollars in corporate partnerships as a result.

Although few think Trump is a serious contender for the GOP nomination, the poll suggests he's tapped into the party's conservative base. Trump's strength was a result of support among conservatives who are less likely to be undecided at this point in the race.

Roughly 30% of Republicans said they were unsure of whom they support among a field of 16 candidates.

Behind the top two contenders the GOP field was clustered. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida were top choices for between 5% and 8% of GOP likely voters.

Outside the conservative base, Trump's support tanked. Among voters of both parties and independents, 61% had a negative impression of the real estate and entertainment mogul. In a matchup against Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton, Trump trailed Clinton by 17 percentage points.

-- Kathleen Hennessey

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Fresh off announcement, Scott Walker visits Las Vegas

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker at a Harley-Davidson store in Las Vegas Tuesday. It was his first campaign appearance since announcing his presidential run. (AP Photo/John Locher)

We need a president who will terminate that bad deal with Iran on day one.
Walker says of Iran deal while at Red Rock Harley-Davidson in Las Vegas

Bush: Republicans 'will never win by striking fear in people's hearts'

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, speaks to the media following a meet and greet event in Council Bluffs, Iowa. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on Tuesday alluded to some of Donald Trump's inflammatory rhetoric on immigration that has dominated the presidential campaign in recent weeks.

Bush sought to tie Trump to President Obama in assailing both men for rhetoric that is divisive and “wrong.”

“We need to stop tearing¿separating ourselves by race and ethnicity and income. We need to focus on the things that tie us together,” Bush said while speaking to reporters in Council Bluffs, Iowa. “And whether it's Donald Trump or Barack Obama their rhetoric of divisiveness is wrong. A Republican will never win by striking fear in people's hearts. A Republican can win, and will win, if we have an aspirational message that gives people hope that their lives will be better when we apply conservative principles the right way.”

Over the weekend Trump rallied thousands in Phoenix where he remained unapologetic about his remarks last month when he labeled Mexican immigrants as rapists and drug runners.

The Persians are always great negotiators. They are laughing at us back in Iran.
Donald Trump in an interview with CNN.

Clinton backs enforcing Iran deal as Republican candidates attack it

(Susan Walsh, AP)

The Times' Evan Halper rounds up the candidates' reactions to the Iran deal, noting Clinton's somewhat cautious remarks to reporters on the Hill. "Clinton, Obama's former secretary of State, has long been more hawkish in her posture toward Iran than him," Halper writes.

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Jeb Bush: 'Dangerous, deeply flawed, and short-sighted deal'

Hours before the announcement, Bush called the Obama's Iran negotiating strategy a strategy of "appeasement" and he's standing by that assessment now:

"The nuclear agreement announced by the Obama Administration today is a dangerous, deeply flawed, and short sighted deal.

A comprehensive agreement should require Iran to verifiably abandon -- not simply delay -- its pursuit of a nuclear weapons capability."

Bush said the deal "paves Iran's path to a bomb" over time.

" ... The people of Iran, the region, Israel, America, and the world deserve better than a deal that consolidates the grip on power of the violent revolutionary clerics who rule Tehran with an iron fist.

"This isn't diplomacy -- it is appeasement."

You can read the full statement by clicking "Read More" below.

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Where to find The Times' full Iran deal coverage

Times' reporters in Washington, Vienna and the Middle East are all over news of the historic agreement to curb Iran's nuclear program. State Department correspondent Paul Richter has the rundown on what's in the agreement, along with this behind-the-scenes look at the diplomatic wrangling that made it happen. Batsheva Sobelman has this report on the harsh reaction from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

From Washington, White House correspondent Christi Parsons has this take on Obama's announcement of the news this morning, while congressional correspondent Lisa Mascaro takes the temperature on the Hill. The Times' David Lauter and others have this explainer on the nuts and bolts of the deal.

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Clinton: Iran deal an 'important step'

We have to treat this as an ongoing enforcement effort, which I certainly strongly support, and as president would be absolutely devoted to ensuring that the agreement is followed. ... I think this is an important step that puts the lid on Iran's nuclear programs and it will enable us then to turn our attention, as it must, to doing what we can with other partners in the region and beyond to try to prevent and contain Iran's other bad actions.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on the landmark nuclear deal with Iran.

Sanders calls deal a victory over 'saber-rattling'

This is a victory for diplomacy over saber-rattling and could keep the United States from being drawn into another never-ending war in the Middle East. I look forward to learning more about the complex details of this agreement to make sure that it is effective and strong.”
Democratic Sen. Bernie Sanders congratulates President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry on brokering a nuclear agreement with Iran.

Walker: Iran deal a 'diplomatic failure'

President Obama's nuclear agreement with Iran will be remembered as one of America's worst diplomatic failures. ... In crafting this agreement, President Obama has abandoned the bipartisan principles that have guided our nonproliferation policy and kept the world safe from nuclear danger for decades. Instead of making the world safer, this deal will likely lead to a nuclear arms race in the world's most dangerous region.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's statement on nuclear agreement announced Tuesday.

Rubio: Congress should reject nuclear deal, send a message

Based on what we know thus far, I believe that this deal undermines our national security. ... I expect that a significant majority in Congress will share my skepticism of this agreement and vote it down. Failure by the President to obtain congressional support will tell the Iranians and the world that this is Barack Obama's deal, not an agreement with lasting support from the United States.”
Sen. Marco Rubio reacts to news that the U.S. and other world powers have reached an agreement to curb Iran's nuclear program.

Bush on Iran deal: We will pay a heavy price

We'll post the candidates' statements on the Iran nuclear deal as we get them. For now, here's what Republicans were saying hours before the announcement.

Iran is not a place to do business with. ... Looking ahead, we need to terminate the bad deal with Iran on the very first day in office. We need to terminate that deal on the very first day in office, put in place crippling economic sanctions in Iran, and convince our allies to do exactly the same thing.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announcing his White House bid Monday.
If Iran gets nuclear capacity, we are now looking at the apocalypse because these people are crazy enough to use it, first against Israel and eventually against us....I think they're going to get a nuclear weapon with or without a deal
Mike Huckabee speaking Monday on Fox News "On the Record."