Late night on the campaign trail: Tim Kaine plays the harmonica
Presidential debate commission announces polls that will determine candidate qualification
The Commission on Presidential Debates announced the five polls it will use to determine candidate popularity as a measure to secure a spot on the debate stage. The commission has hosted every general election presidential and vice presidential debate since 1988 and requires candidates to be polling at least 15% in an average of five national polls to be eligible to participate.
Those five polls will be ABC-Washington Post, CBS-New York Times, CNN-Opinion Research Corp., Fox News and NBC-Wall Street Journal for the 2016 debates. The commission said those five polls were chosen with advice from Frank Newport, the editor in chief of polling powerhouse Gallup.
The commission has faced criticism for its 15% requirement, with third parties and advocacy groups arguing that independent candidates cannot meet that threshold without spending millions of dollars to achieve the necessary name recognition.
Biden says Trump has heightened danger for U.S. troops abroad
As Vice President Joe Biden joined Hillary Clinton to warn of the peril of a Donald Trump presidency, he offered many of the now-familiar critiques of Trump’s foreign policy views on Russia, immigration and nuclear weapons with his typical plainspoken flair.
“Hillary has forgotten more about American foreign policy than Trump and his entire -- I’m not exaggerating -- his entire team will ever understand,” he said at one point.
He also twice invoked the memory of the son he lost last year to cancer in a solemn rebuke of the Republican nominee.
Speaking to an audience that included some relatives and former neighbors in Scranton, the vice president noted that Beau Biden had served in Iraq for a year during a deployment as part of his Delaware National Guard unit.
“I must tell you, had Donald Trump been president, I would have thrown my body in front of him -- no, I really mean it -- to keep him from going,” he said.
He later offered the most direct response to date on behalf of the Obama administration to Trump’s recent statement that the president was the “founder” of Islamic State, calling it not only “an outrageous statement,” but a “dangerous one.”
“If my son were still in Iraq, and I say to all those who are there, the threat to their life has gone up a couple clicks,” Biden said.
Biden spent much of his speech at the first joint rally he held with Clinton to testify to the Democratic nominee’s empathy for members of the middle class and their struggles since the Great Recession. But aides reworked his planned remarks this weekend to offer something of a pre-buttal to Trump as the GOP presidential candidate prepared to deliver a major national security address.
Biden said Trump’s ideas were “not only profoundly wrong, they’re very dangerous and they’re very un-American.”
“They reveal a profound ignorance of our Constitution,” he said. “It’s a recipe for playing into the hands of terrorists and their propaganda.”
In her remarks, Clinton noted she has repeatedly offered a detailed plan to counter Islamic State, and said that under the leadership of President Obama and Biden, the U.S. has made progress toward the goal of defeating the terror group.
“It won’t be easy or quick. But make no mistake: we will prevail,” she said.
She mocked Trump by noting he often won’t state his plan, saying he prefers to keep it a secret.
“The secret is he has no plan,” she said.
“There is no doubt: Donald Trump is temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be president of the United States and commander in chief.”
Donald Trump calls for ‘extreme vetting’ of people entering the U.S.
Donald Trump vowed a new era of “extreme vetting” of foreign immigrants Monday — ensuring they share American values — as he attempted to recast his ban on Muslims entering the country.
The speech in Youngstown, Ohio, was billed as a major national security address and it featured an unusually subdued Trump reading uneasily at times from a teleprompter and repeating several false claims he has made previously, including his assertion that he opposed the Iraq invasion. It followed days of new controversy over his claim that President Obama and Hillary Clinton founded Islamic State.
Trump did not explicitly reverse his previous proposal to temporarily halt all Muslim immigration. He did not mention it at all, instead calling on the departments of State and Homeland Security “to identify a list of regions where adequate screening cannot take place,” which would then be referred to to temporarily halt visas.
Trump spent more of his speech defining what he said was a new ideological test for those entering the U.S., comparing his plan to Cold War-era screening.
“We should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people,” he said. “In addition to screening out all members or sympathizers of terrorist groups, we must also screen out any who have hostile attitudes towards our country or its principles – or who believe that Sharia law should supplant American law. Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted.”
Giuliani: No ‘successful radical Islamic terrorist attacks’ in U.S. before Obama’s presidency
Former New York mayor and Donald Trump surrogate Rudolph W. Giuliani told Trump’s supporters Monday that the U.S. did not face “any successful radical Islamic terrorist attacks” before President Obama took office in 2008.
Giuliani’s claim, of course, ignores the Sept 11 attacks and was especially notable because he was mayor of New York at the time, a position that has formed a pillar of his public identity since then.
Vice President Joe Biden once famously said of Giuliani: “There’s only three things he mentions in a sentence — a noun and a verb and 9/11.”
Political Twitter immediately seized on Giuliani’s errant line:
Joe Biden calls himself ‘the Obama whisperer’ while campaigning for Hillary Clinton
Vice President Joe Biden dubbed himself “the Obama whisperer” while campaigning with Hillary Clinton in Scranton, Pa. The nickname referenced the conversations Biden would have with Clinton during weekly breakfasts while she was secretary of State.
Hillary Clinton calls on Joe Biden to continue cancer initiative if she becomes president
Hillary Clinton told supporters at a Pennsylvania rally Monday that she would ask Vice President Joe Biden to continue leading his Cancer Moonshot initiative if she is elected president.
Biden’s son, Beau, died in May 2015 after he was diagnosed with brain cancer 20 months earlier.
Vice President Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton meet on tarmac before Pennsylvania rally
Hillary Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden will campaign together at a Monday afternoon rally in Scranton, Pa.
Joe Biden to make the case for Hillary Clinton to working-class voters
For Vice President Joe Biden, campaigning in 2016 looks a lot like 2008 and 2012 but with one big difference: He’s not on the ticket.
Biden passed on a run for the White House last year, and on Monday he’s to appear alongside Hillary Clinton for the first time to kick off his role as her chief envoy to the middle class and as a determined critic of Republican nominee Donald Trump. They are scheduled to campaign in working-class Scranton, Pa., Biden’s hometown.
Biden will join other Democrats who’ve cast Trump as unfit to lead, aides to the vice president say, and he’ll go further to aggressively counter Trump’s efforts to appeal to working-class voters, whom Biden has courted with success in his more than four decades in politics.
Trump lashes out at the Wall Street Journal for calling on him to change or leave
Donald Trump lashed out at the media again, this time targeting a critical Wall Street Journal editorial.
Republicans must act now to rein in Trump or risk losing the election, the Journal editorial board warned.
“He thinks the same shoot-from-the-lip style that won over a plurality of GOP primary voters can persuade other Republicans and independents who worry if he has the temperament to be commander in chief,” the board wrote.
The Journal even suggested Trump consider handing the campaign over to his running mate if he doesn’t want to change.
“He needs to stop blaming everyone else and decide if he wants to behave like someone who wants to be president — or turn the nomination over to Mike Pence.”
Trump fired back in response at what he called “disgusting” media.
Trump’s campaign chairman fights back against report detailing pro-Russian payment ledgers
Donald Trump’s campaign is fighting back against a New York Times story published Sunday night that told of handwritten ledgers indicating that Trump’s campaign chairman received $12.7 million in undisclosed cash payments from a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine.
The report -- showing even closer ties between Trump’s inner circle and Russia than were previously known -- threatens to further damage Trump’s campaign on the same day the candidate is scheduled to deliver a major speech on national security.
Campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s consulting work for former Ukraine President Viktor F. Yanukovych was already public. But the Times reported records of cash payments between 2007 to 2012 that were not previously disclosed. It said the ledgers were discovered by an anticorruption bureau as “part of an illegal off-the-books system whose recipients also included election officials.”
The Times report said criminal investigators are separately looking into a network of “offshore shell companies that helped members of Mr. Yanukovych’s inner circle finance their lavish lifestyles.” One such transaction, the Times reported, involved an $18-million cable television deal put together by Manafort. The newspaper reported that Manafort is not the target of the probe.
Trump’s supportive comments of Russian President Vladimir Putin had already drawn scrutiny.
Manafort drew particular scrutiny after the GOP platform, approved last month, eliminated a call to arm Ukraine in its fight with Russia, which seized the Crimean Peninsula in 2014 and has supported separatists in eastern Ukraine.
The Trump campaign, which was already at war with the New York Times, released a statement Monday under Manafort’s name, leaving some distance between the nominee and the campaign chairman.
“The suggestion that I accepted cash payments is unfounded, silly and nonsensical,” Manafort said, claiming that “the New York Times has chosen to purposefully ignore facts and professional journalism to fit their political agenda, choosing to attack my character and reputation rather than present an honest report.”
Manafort conceded in the statement that he has done campaign work for overseas clients, while denying his payments were “off-the-books cash” or for the governments of Ukraine and Russia. He did not specifically deny the size of his payments and went on to say that any money he received was “for my entire political team: campaign staff (local and international), polling and research, election integrity and television advertising.”
“My work in Ukraine ceased following the country’s parliamentary elections in October 2014,” he said. “In addition, as the article points out hesitantly, every government official interviewed states I have done nothing wrong, and there is no evidence of ‘cash payments’ made to me by any official in Ukraine.”
Hillary Clinton’s campaign, meanwhile, has called the report “troubling.”
“Given the pro-Putin policy stances adopted by Donald Trump and the recent Russian government hacking and disclosure of Democratic Party records, Donald Trump has a responsibility to disclose campaign chair Paul Manafort’s and all other campaign employees’ and advisors’ ties to Russian or pro-Kremlin entities, including whether any of Trump’s employees or advisors are currently representing and or being paid by them,” campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement.
As a young Donald Trump began his real estate career, he fought hard against allegations of racial bias
Before he became the king of Atlantic City casinos, before he put his name on steaks or starred on reality television, Donald Trump served his own apprenticeship in the less glamorous family business of renting apartments.
Trump, in his autobiography, recalled learning valuable lessons from his father, Fred: Hunt for bargains. Chase out deadbeats. Spend some money on paint and polish.
Some alleged there was another part to the Trump formula: Make it tough for black people to move in.
In two court cases, built on evidence gathered from frustrated black apartment-seekers, housing activists and former employees, Fred, and, in a later case, Donald Trump faced accusations of systematic discrimination against African Americans, cases that the Trumps ultimately settled without admitting any wrongdoing.
Some would-be tenants were turned away at a complex in Cincinnati, where Donald Trump says he got his start as a property manager. And in New York, the allegations led to what was then one of the largest housing discrimination lawsuits filed by the federal government.