Afternoon Fix: Wisconsin Supreme Court justice accused of choking colleague
Accusations of choking fly on the Wisconsin Supreme Court, Michele Bachmann gets the wrong John Wayne, and Jon Huntsman wants $200,000.
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WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:
* Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Ann Walsh Bradley, a liberal, is accusing Justice David Prosser, a conservative, of trying to choke her during an argument two weeks ago. Prosser is well-known for surviving a re-election campaign earlier this year that became a proxy war over the state’s collective bargaining legislation. He denied the accusations; the local sheriff is investigating the incident. Gov. Scott Walker (R) said on a radio show today that the infighting needs to end or citizens will lose confidence in the court.
* The wrong John Wayne: In her well-received presidential announcement speech, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) doubled down on Iowa and her roots there. But she made one minor gaffe about her birthplace, saying “John Wayne was from Waterloo, Iowa. That’s the kind of spirit that I have, too.” John Wayne the legendary movie star is from Winterset — a three -hour drive away. John Wayne Gacy, the serial killer, lived in Waterloo.
* In an apparent attempt to steal a bit of Bachmann’s Iowa thunder, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty sent out a statement today touting the endorsements of a score of Iowa legislators . State Reps.Chip Baltimore, Joel Fry, Chris Hagenow, Erik Helland, Steve Lukan, Linda Miller, Matt Windschitl and Sens. Rob Bacon, Randy Feenstra and Shawn Hamerlinck are all on board. Pawlenty said the support “bolsters my Iowa campaign's efforts to build successful coalitions in this important state.”
* President Obama has raised the stakes on a dinner lottery meant to draw in small donors. Previously, supporters were told that if they chipped in five bucks, they could win a meal with the president. Now, for the same low price, the White House is throwing in Vice President Joe Biden. "He wants to join us," Obama said in a video message. “So this isn't so much dinner with Barack anymore as it is dinner with Barack and Joe. And to use one of his favorite expressions, that’s a big deal.” Given Biden is reportedly far more open with donors than Obama, it might just be.
* Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.) is facing criticism from some religious leaders for saying last week that “at the heart ofliberalism really is a hatred for God.” Akin, who is running for Senate against Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill, made the comment in an interview with the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins. He was criticizing NBC News for not using the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance at the U.S. Open. A spokesman said that with more time, Akin could have “provided a more artful answer,” but that he was talking about general ideologies, not individual religious beliefs.
WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:
* Nebraska State Sen. Deb Fischer is getting into the crowded GOP primary to take on Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.). She’s planning to make an announcement tomorrow. Fischer is the first woman in the field; she joins Attorney General Jon Bruning, State Treasurer Don Stenberg, businessman Pat Flynn and and Omaha truck driver Spencer Zimmerman. While Bruning is currently dominating in fundraising and polls, Fischer has the support of many establishment Republicans and could give him a run for his money.
* If Rick Perry runs for president, he won’t just run in the South, an adviser to the Texas governor told National Journal. “You can’t just say, ‘I am going to win South Carolina’; you have to try to be competitive everywhere,” Dave Carney said. “This is not a two-state strategy.” One of the dilemmas Perry’s team faces is whether he has enough time to raise money and build organization for a national campaign if he launches now.
* Jon Huntsman is hoping to raise $200,000 by Thursday, the former Utah governor’s campaign said in an email appeal today. That’s the deadline for quarterly fundraising numbers, an early sign of presidential campaigns’ viability. The numbers come out on July 15th. The president candidate is asking for anywhere from $10 to $2500 online.
* Continuing an aggressive campaign for what is generally considered a safe Democratic seat, Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn released two new television ads today. The first ad, “Will fight for our agenda, touts Hahn as a non-partisan leader. The second, “Extreme,” depicts Republican Craig Huey as a radical social conservative and links him to former Alaska govenor Sarah Palin.
THE FIX MIX:
With Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake