Obama to Republicans: Like it or not, you’re stuck with Trump
If Republican leaders won’t line up behind Donald Trump, President Obama is trying to lash them together himself.
Obama seized on the deepening fracture between Republicans and likely nominee Trump on Friday, warning GOP leaders and voters alike that, like it or not, Trump is the face of the party now.
“Their standard-bearer at the moment is Donald Trump,” Obama said in a hastily scheduled appearance in the White House briefing room, ostensibly to discuss the economy. “Not just Republican officials, but more importantly, Republican voters are going to have to make a decision as to whether this is the guy who speaks for them and represents their values.”
With mail voting about to begin, Hillary Clinton ramps up Bay Area campaigns
Shortly before Hillary Clinton dropped by her campaign’s Oakland field office on Friday afternoon, the downtown operation was buzzing with volunteers.
Although California’s primary is still a month away, mail ballots are already being distributed, and supporters have been dialing voters in hopes of securing their help in the primary.
“We treat every day from May 7 to June 7 as election day,” said Arielle Goren, a campaign spokeswoman.
The campaign will be training volunteers on Saturday in Oakland, and they’ll be enlisting female supporters to reach out to women voters on Mother’s Day.
The Oakland field office, the first of several that are opening around the state, was plastered with Clinton placards and homemade signs.
Reena Sekhon-Johl, 36, who lives in nearby Pleasanton, said she signed up to volunteer a few weeks ago after a distressing conversation with a longtime friend who is supporting Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee.
She decided, “‘I want to do something.’ I donated to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. I bought a shirt. I signed up to volunteer.”
Sekhon-Johl said she hopes Democrats unite around the party’s nominee after the prolonged primary rivalry with Bernie Sanders.
“We are not a ‘Hillary or bust’ campaign,” she said. “We are for what’s best for the nation.”
Juan Cerda, 32, volunteered for Clinton in Iowa and brought his parents from Bakersfield to the field office in Oakland to help make phone calls. His father, David Cerda, 66, a mechanic, said Clinton is the right candidate for farm workers in his area.
“They want something new, they want someone to help their sons and daughters to have a better life,” he said.
Donald Trump to testify in Trump University fraud lawsuit -- after the election
A federal judge in San Diego determined Friday that Donald Trump would testify after the presidential election in a class-action lawsuit that accuses the presumptive GOP nominee and his now-defunct Trump University of defrauding students.
The judge set a Nov. 28 trial date, and Trump lawyer Daniel Petrocelli said the billionaire businessman planned to attend most, if not all, of the trial and would take the witness stand.
The lawsuit is one of three that accuse Trump University of fleecing students with unfulfilled promises to teach secrets of success in real estate.
A handful of students sued the real estate mogul in 2010, alleging his Trump University was a sham full of misleading promises. The students said in a class-action lawsuit that they had paid as much as $35,000 to learn Trump’s secrets to real estate success.
Hillary Clinton drops by Oakland field office, her first in California
Jeb Bush jumps on the boycott Trump bandwagon
Make that three members of the Bush dynasty who want nothing to do with their party’s presumptive presidential nominee.
Jeb Bush, taking to a favorite medium, laced into GOP rival Donald Trump on Friday in a Facebook post, calling him unfit for the White House.
Bush, the son of one president and brother of another, said the office requires “great fortitude and humility and the temperament and strong character” to deal with the challenges the country will face over the next four years.
“Donald Trump has not demonstrated that temperament or strength of character,” wrote Bush, who was savaged by the Manhattan real estate mogul during his own unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination. “He has not displayed a respect for the Constitution. And he is not a consistent conservative.”
Bush, a former Florida governor, said he would not vote for the likely Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, calling her “an untrustworthy liberal politician” who would extend the “disastrous” agenda of President Obama.
“I will support principled conservatives at the state and federal level,” Bush wrote.
His manifesto came two days after his father, President George H.W. Bush, and brother, President George W. Bush, revealed their intentions to sit out the campaign and withhold their endorsement from Trump. Both also plan to skip the Republican National Convention in July.
Jeb Bush had earlier stated his intention to stay away from the convention in Cleveland. Of the GOP’s five living previous presidential nominees, only former Sen. Bob Dole plans to attend the convention, and he says he has not decided whether to support Trump.
Why the nation’s crumbling subways may finally get some attention this election
A fire on subway tracks in Washington on Thursday disrupted evening rush hour service, one of many recent problems with Metro service.
A ball of fire that erupted on the subway tracks here Thursday injured no one but set off a chain of rush-hour delays that have become maddeningly common. Two months ago, the entire subway system shut down, with little warning because of urgent concerns for safety. Last year, a train got stuck in a smoke-filled tunnel, trapping passengers and killing one.
The meltdown in the nation’s second-busiest subway system, once a model of utopian design and national aspiration, is sending a direct warning to federal lawmakers that the country’s aging mass transit systems need billions of dollars in repairs, that, if unmet, pose a genuine safety threat to the public.
“It is just one more example of the under-investments that have been made,” President Obama said Friday, warning of more failures in the nation’s infrastructure and putting a price tag of $1 trillion to $2 trillion on fixing the problem. “The D.C. Metro historically has been a great strength of this region. But over time, we under-invested in maintenance and repair.”
Advocates for fixing the crumbling subways see hope amid the disastrous commutes. The presidential front-runners from both parties, who share close ties to New York, home of the busiest subway in the U.S., have found rare agreement that repairs are desperately needed, and that mass transit is crucial to the economy.
Paul Ryan invites Donald Trump to Washington in a step toward party unity
After 24 hours of sparring with each other, Donald Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan could be inching toward a truce.
In a statement released Friday, Ryan announced that he invited the presumptive Republican presidential nominee for a meeting next week with leaders of the House GOP in an effort to unify the party before the November elections. The visit would also include a meeting with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus.
A request for comment from Trump’s campaign was not immediately returned.
The invitation from Ryan comes a day after he told CNN he’s “not ready” to support Trump as the party’s nominee, despite the billionaire businessman clearing the field following Tuesday’s win in Indiana’s primary.
Trump followed up with a barrage of tweets assailing Ryan, while also issuing a statement saying that he’s “not ready to support Speaker Ryan’s agenda.”
The billionaire businessman has gained the public support of other Republicans, but many establishment figuers, including 2012 presidential nominee Mitt Romney, are keeping their distance.
Trump has called on Republicans to unite behind him for what is expected to be a slugfest this fall against Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.
Speaker Paul Ryan invites Donald Trump to meet with House GOP leaders
Can Donald Trump redraw the political map? He must to win the White House
Donald Trump did something very few expected, besting a large field of practiced politicians to become the GOP’s presumptive presidential nominee. He’ll have to top that to win the White House.
To reach the 270 electoral votes it takes, the businessman and reality TV star will have to carry a number of states that have not voted Republican in well over a generation, while prevailing in several battlegrounds where, polls show, he starts the race behind.
He must also defend states that the GOP has reliably counted on for decades.
“It’s a very steep slope to climb,” said William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institute in Washington, who has closely studied the political composition of the 50 states.
Sen. Lindsey Graham is a ‘no’ vote on Donald Trump
Obama: Trump is the GOP standard-bearer, and Republicans must decide what that means for the party
In first comments on Donald Trump since the real estate marnate became the presumptive Republican nominee, President Obama warned Friday about the high stakes for a country facing “serious times” and in need of a leader for a “serious job.”
“This is not entertainment,” Obama said. “This is not a reality show.”
Speaking to reporters in the White House briefing room, Obama called Trump the party’s standard-bearer and challenged party loyalists to consider what voting for him would mean.
“Not just Republican officials, but more importantly, Republican voters are going to have to make a decision as to whether this is the guy who speaks for them and represents their values,” he said.
Obama also posed what could be a crucial question for Republican women to ask themselves: “Is that the guy I feel comfortable with?”
In his first public remarks about Trump since the billionaire’s last two GOP rivals quit the race, Obama offered an admonishment to those journalists who will cover the campaign from here on.
Voters have to be “effectively informed,” Obama said, and candidates must be “held to what they have said in the past.”
Obama suggested that he plans to stay out of the Democratic primary battle, which is still playing out, despite front-runner Hillary Clinton’s strong lead in total delegates.
“Let’s let the process play itself out,” Obama said.
Donald Trump denies cheating at golf, says he’s never played with Oscar De La Hoya
Donald Trump not only denied recent allegations by Oscar De La Hoya that he cheated during a round of golf two years ago, but the presumptive Republican presidential nominee denies having ever played the game with the former boxing champion.
Trump told the Associated Press on Thursday that De La Hoya is “absolutely lying. Not only didn’t I cheat, I didn’t play with him. I have never played a round of golf with this guy.”
Maybe both men are fudging the truth.
Donald Trump rules out the possibility of a Democratic running mate
Donald Trump won’t put any Democrats on his list of potential vice presidential running mates, he said Friday.
He clarified a day after Ben Carson, the former candidate who now backs Trump, told the Wall Street Journal that Trump plans to consider independent and even Democratic options for a running mate. But Trump swiftly vetoed those ideas, promising to pick “a great Republican.”
“I want to have a great ticket,” Trump said on “Fox and Friends.” “The Democrats have been in there a long time; the economy is terrible.”
Republican Party chairman: It’s ‘highly doubtful’ Trump won’t win the nomination at the convention
Reince Priebus has taken on a new role — refereeing the relationship between Donald Trump and Paul Ryan.
Priebus, the Republican National Committee chairman, has been working to bring around party holdouts to accepting Trump as the GOP’s presumptive nominee. He assured Politico in an interview Friday that it’s “highly, highly doubtful” that Trump would fail to be nominated at the GOP convention this summer or that any rule changes would be implemented to block him.
Priebus added that any splintering to a third-party run “is a guarantee to elect Hillary Clinton.”
Priebus insisted that Ryan’s acknowledgment that he’s “not ready” to support Trump showed the speaker’s honesty but not a split from the party.
“I’m comfortable that it’s going to take some time in some cases,” Priebus said of Ryan, the House speaker.
On Friday morning, though, Trump doubled down on his disagreement with Ryan:
Priebus predicted that Trump will subdue his bombastic comments ahead of the general election, saying that the real estate magnate takes on a far more “gracious” and “personable” tone behind closed doors than he does at his rallies.
Priebus admitted that the last time Republicans won the presidency with “relative ease” was in 1988 but that he believes the party will survive its current fracture.
“The party is, was and will remain the Republican Party of the open door,” Priebus said.
Voting has gotten tougher in 17 states, and it could alter elections
Morris Reid did not expect any problems when he went to his local polling station outside Raleigh, N.C., to vote in the 2014 midterm election. Yet the longtime voter, a 57-year-old Democrat, found he could not cast his ballot.
A poll worker told the African American jail superintendent he was registered in another county.
Reid was certain there had been a mistake -- he’d instructed the Department of Motor Vehicles to update his voter registration when he moved three months before -- but he drove five miles to another polling center, only to find he was not registered there either. After a third trip, he cast a provisional ballot, which ultimately did not count thanks to a new North Carolina law that eliminates out-of-precinct voting.
“I couldn’t exercise my right to vote,” he said. “And that’s the way it was.”