Donald Trump arrives for a meeting with Henry Kissinger in New York City last week. (Reuters/Brendan McDermid)

THE BIG IDEA:

Donald Trump bests Hillary Clinton by 2 points among registered voters in the new Washington Post/ABC poll. While within the margin of error, this represents an 11-point swing in his direction since March. The presumptive Republican nominee’s lead is driven by strength among independent voters, who favor him by 13 points.

But our national poll finds that these independent voters are profoundly troubled by Trump’s refusal to release his tax returns, a sign of the issue’s potential potency.

Six in 10 independents believe Trump should release his taxes, and almost all of them say they feel strongly about it. Even 44 percent of Republicans want the billionaire businessman to release his returns before the November election, though they are less passionate.

Both candidates are viewed more unfavorably than favorably by double digits. Interestingly, one of the few issues that works to Trump’s advantage right now is tax policy:

-- Trump is trying to become the first major-party nominee in 40 years not to release his returns. His excuses continue to evolve:

In 2011, he said he’d share his tax returns if Barack Obama released his birth certificate. The president did; The Donald did not follow through.

In 2012, Trump criticized Mitt Romney for trying to keep his returns private. (Romney eventually relented.)

This January, Trump declared he was ready to release his returns. But, after winning in several primaries, the business mogul clarified that he won’t release them until after the IRS finishes auditing him. (Something which raises its own host of questions.) Then Trump claimed there’s nothing to learn from the filings. Next, he invoked personal privacy. “None of your business,” he’s said a few times. After a backlash, he reiterated that he wants to release them but cannot. He’s bragged about paying as little as possible, which he’s called “the American way,” but he also routinely attacks corporations for using loopholes to “get away with murder” in his stump speech.

Trump told The Post last week that he has paid “substantial” taxes but declined to provide specifics. He reiterated that he tries “very hard to pay as little tax as possible”: “One of the reasons is because the government takes your money and wastes it in the Middle East and all over the place.”

-- Trump did not pay any federal income tax for at least two years in the late 1970s, The Post’s Drew Harwell revealed on Friday. “The disclosure, in a 1981 report by New Jersey gambling regulators, revealed that the wealthy Manhattan investor had … taken advantage of a tax-code provision popular with developers that allowed him to report negative income.”

-- Trolling Trump, Hillary suggested yesterday that her opponent is not releasing the filings because he’s not as successful as he claims. “He goes around talking about make America great,” Clinton said on “Meet the Press.” “You know, that means paying for our military. That means paying for our roads. That means paying for the VA. If you've got someone running for president who is afraid to release his tax returns because it will expose the fact that he pays no federal income tax, that's a big problem.”

-- How we know this issue is starting to break through: People Magazine’s home page links to a story about the above quote this morning.

Trump tweeted this image of himself signing his tax return, but that's it... (Trump Presidential Campaign via AP)

-- Why the tax returns are a great wedge issue for HRC:

1. Helps make the case that Trump is not “on your side.” Our polling shows that Trump is overwhelmingly seen as the candidate whose economic policies would help the rich get richer. Hillary can use the tax secrecy issue to say that he’s looking out for himself, not the middle class.

2. Burnishes the attack that Trump is not trustworthy. Remember that big fundraiser Trump had for veterans in January, when he skipped the Fox News debate on the eve of the Iowa caucuses? The candidate declared he had raised more than $6 million. Now, Trump’s campaign says the fundraiser actually netted about $4.5 million, $1.5 million less than he said, per David Fahrenthold.

3. Neutralizes Clinton’s own secrecy problem: Recall how hard Bernie Sanders has hit her for not releasing the transcripts of her speeches to Goldman Sachs. That has no teeth in a general election if Trump is keeping his taxes private.

-- Clearly, Trump’s calculation is that whatever emerges from releasing the documents would be more damaging than continuing to hide them from the voters. Conservative Post blogger Jennifer Rubin says “other problems could include: foreign entanglements; business deals with shady characters; making money from businesses that have shipped jobs overseas; and embarrassing details on alimony to former wives.” But perhaps the first-time candidate merely does not comprehend how much this issue can and will be used against him.

Other key numbers from our new poll—

-- Trump’s proposal to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the United States is more popular than you probably think: 40 percent of adults support it, including 30 percent strongly, while just 50 percent oppose it. Two-thirds of Republicans back the ban, as do 45 percent of independents. (Our Mary Jordan has an excellent story from Syria, Virginia, this morning about the kinds of voters who cheer on Trump's Muslim position.)

-- In a sign that the base is coming home, Trump wins 85 percent of self-identified Republicans. While 41 percent of registered Republicans say Trump’s views do not reflect the core values of the party, most support him anyway.

-- 58 percent of U.S. adults say Trump is not qualified to be president. (63 percent say Clinton is qualified.)

-- More than 3 in 4 say Trump does not show enough respect to people with whom he disagrees; 55 percent of adults say it is a major problem; but 30 percent of that overall group still support him.

-- 44 percent of Americans want a third-party option.

-- Mitt Romney pulls 22 percent as an independent in a three-way match-up, with Clinton getting 37 percent and Trump 35 percent among registered voters.

-- Obama’s approval rating is 51 percent.

-- Why you should take Trump’s narrow lead over Clinton in our poll with a grain of salt: Some Bernie supporters will rally around Hillary after the primaries are over. In 2008, the last time Democrats had a contest, Barack Obama led in head-to-head match-ups against John McCain for most of the year, The Fix’s Philip Bump notes. “There were two big exceptions: Right after the Republican convention — and right after McCain clinched his party’s nomination. That happened in March, three months before the Democratic contest ended."

Welcome to the Daily 202, PowerPost's morning briefing.
Written with Breanne Deppisch (@breanne_dep) and Elise Viebeck (@eliseviebeck).

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WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING:

President Obama meets with Communist Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong at the Communist Party of Vietnam's Central Office in Hanoi. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

-- The U.S. is fully lifting a longstanding embargo on arms sales to Vietnam, a decision that reflects growing concerns about China’s military build-up and illustrates the normalization of ties between former enemies. The White House unveiled the new arrangement during the president’s first visit to the communist country, where he began his three-day stay with a bilateral meeting with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang. Senior aides said the order will allow the U.S. to sell military weapons to Vietnam on a case-by-case basis, predicated on improvements in human rights and freedom of expression in the country. (David Nakamura, traveling with POTUS, has more.) 

Norbert Hofer of the Austrian Freedom Party at his election night party in Vienna. (Reuters/Heinz-Peter Bader)

-- Sunday's presidential election in Austria is too close to call. But Norbert Hofer – the far-right populist often compared to Trump – narrowly leads his opponent, and the outcome of the high-stakes race will probably come down to absentee ballots. From Anthony Faiola: “Hofer, a 45-year old who campaigned on an anti-migrant, anti-Muslim and anti-establishment platform, held a lead in the direct vote, winning 51.9 percent, according to the Interior Ministry. Alexander Van der Bellen, a longtime Green Party politician running as an independent, won 48.1 percent.” The unexpected strength of Hofer’s candidacy caught many observers off guard: It reflects the historical roots of Austria’s far right. But it also captures the populist zeitgeist coursing through the West, from the United States to Europe. The outcome will reverberate far beyond the Alpine nation of 8.5 million.

  • A far-right party won seats in Cyprus’s parliament for the first time during yesterday's elections. The results indicate a strong undercurrent of dis­illusionment with the country’s traditional powerhouses, the AP reports.
  • The Central Asian nation of Tajikistan, meanwhile, claims its voters overwhelmingly approved changes to the Constitution that will allow the authoritarian president to rule indefinitely.

GET SMART FAST:​​

Iraqi security forces gather yesterday on the outskirts of Fallujah as they prepare to attack. (Ahmad al-Rubayea/AFP/Getty Images)
  1. Iraq launched a major military operation to reclaim Fallujah from ISIS. The city, of course, was the scene of the bloodiest fighting for U.S. Marines during the Iraq War. (Loveday Morris and Mustafa Salim)
  2. The drone strike that killed the head of the Taliban on Saturday represents another escalation in U.S. involvement in the war in Afghanistan and a willingness to conduct military operations inside Pakistan. (Tim Craig, Antonio Olivo and Missy Ryan)
  3. Egypt’s president said “all scenarios” are still being considered to explain last week’s EgyptAir crash, and he warned against speculation that the plane was brought down by a terrorist attack. “We should not say one scenario is more likely," he said Sunday. (Heba Habib and Erin Cunningham)
  4. A Massachusetts company is testing an organ transplant system that keeps organs warm, perfusing them with blood while they're being transported to recipients. Surgeons are hopeful the new method may help ease shortages. (Lenny Bernstein)
  5. Two climbers who reached the summit of Everest died while descending the mountain this weekend. They were suffering from altitude sickness. (USA Today)
  6. A pair of suicide bombings killed 45 army recruits in Yemen. Scores of others were injured. (AP)
  7. A California man faces animal cruelty charges after his dog tested positive for meth and heroin. Authorities rescued the dog during a drug raid and sent him to rehab. (Yanan Wang)

THE DAILY DONALD:

SE Cupp (L) and Michelle Fields (R) discuss sexism in 2016 at a Glamour/Facebook event last month. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Glamour)

-- The Huffington Post hired former Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields to cover the Trump campaign. Fields, who filed charges against campaign manager Corey Lewandowski after he grabbed her arm during a rally in Florida, announced the new gig last night. (CNN Money)

-- Ohio presents Trump’s best opportunity to carry a big swing state AND reveals his team’s steep logistical challenges. From the Wall Street Journal’s Reid Epstein: “Trump’s slow start, here and elsewhere, could undermine his goal of expanding the map into the industrial Midwest and breaking up a voting bloc that has given the Democrats an advantage for nearly a decade." How bad is it?

  • Trump has no general-election staff in Ohio, and senior aides in New York and Washington still have not made contact with the state Republican Party. Meanwhile, Clinton aides are preparing to open the first campaign office in Columbus and have begun coordinating with the Ohio Democratic Party to recruit volunteers in the state.
  • Efforts to recruit former John Kasich operatives have failed. The governor hasn’t put out a formal notice to his aides to avoid working for Trump, but several said they wouldn’t take a job without first discussing it with Kasich. “There’s no one in a senior- or midlevel position in the campaign in Ohio … who would or will be going to work for Trump,” said Kasich’s senior strategist John Weaver.
  • Ohio’s electorate is “tailor-made” for Trump’s populist message: Among states that were competitive in the 2012 election, only New Hampshire has a smaller percentage of Hispanics than Ohio’s 3.5%. Restricting foreign trade – one of Trump’s key issues -- is a particularly potent issue here. And this year’s March primary added 363,000 more Republican voters to the state’s voter rolls than Democrats.
Bob Corker speaks to the Rotary Club in Chattanooga earlier this month. (AP Photo/Erik Schelzig)

-- Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), a potential V.P. pick, will meet today with Trump at Trump Tower. From Robert Costa: “Corker, 63, serves as chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee … The two have a friendly rapport, and both consider themselves to be deal-makers and Republican mavericks. And both come from the world of real estate — Corker, one of the wealthiest members of Congress, has made millions of dollars on construction projects, investments and various properties. As a Senate Republican insider and establishment figure who sees Trump as a welcome addition to the GOP, Corker could fit part of the informal criteria that Trump has laid out as he thinks through his options.”

-- Trump’s top foreign policy adviser has quietly begun outreach to Muslims. No surprise: He's been thwarted by his boss's Muslim ban. From The Hill’s Jonathan Easley: Walid Phares said he initiated contact with several individuals and groups, asking them to organize for Trump or to sell them on Trump’s positions. But the bulk of the discussions, Phares said, were initiated by curious Middle Eastern conservatives seeking additional information on Trump’s views or hoping to influence his policies. “Most of those who reached out said they want to support Mr. Trump, but they’re not clear about some of the statements he’s made,” he told the paper. Phares said campaign officials had not directed him to engage with the groups, but described the talks as a “natural extension” of the relationships he’s built over decades.

-- Coming attractions --> Trump rooted against the American economy. Two years before the 2008 housing market collapsed, The Donald said that he was “sort of hoping” for a crash: "I sort of hope that happens because then people like me would go in and buy," Trump said in an audiobook released by Trump University. "If there is a bubble burst, as they call it, you know you can make a lot of money. If you're in a good cash position -- which I'm in a good cash position today -- then people like me would go in and buy like crazy." (CNN)

Lindsey Graham speaks during Michael Milken's conference in Beverly Hilton earlier this month. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

-- Lindsey Graham has decided to bite the bullet. CNN reports that the South Carolina senator urged GOP donors to unite behind Trump at a private fundraiser in Florida this weekend, stressing the importance of keeping Clinton from the White House. This is truly breathtaking when you consider his warnings about how dangerous Trump would be as a commander-in-chief during the primaries.

Response from Graham's spokesman:

Delegates listen to a speech during the Washington State Republican convention in Pasco on Friday night. (Bob Brawdy/The Tri-City Herald via AP) 

-- Not everyone is ready to get on The Trump Train: Washington State Republicans backed Ted Cruz over the presumptive GOP nominee at their convention this weekend, awarding 40 of 41 elected delegates to the Texas senator. From the Seattle Times: Even Trump’s state campaign chairman was not able to secure a delegate slot. “The majority are taking a wait-and-see attitude on Trump,” said Cruz’s state campaign chairman Saul Gamoran. The result is unlikely to change the outcome of July’s nominating convention, however, since the delegates are bound to vote in accordance with results of the state’s primary.

-- Other leading Republicans keep twisting themselves into pretzels: “New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez continues to stay silent about who she supports for the presidential race,” the Las Cruces CBS affiliate reports. “Martinez said she wants to hear more about Trump's plans for New Mexico before considering an endorsement.” The chair of the Republican Governors Association said she will not attend Trump’s rally in the state tomorrow. “I'll tell you one thing. I can tell you I'm not voting for Hilary Clinton," Martinez said. Asked if she’ll endorse Trump, she replied: "I will not be endorsing Hillary Clinton.”

-- Trump will try to patch things up with skeptical evangelical holdouts during a June 21 meeting in NYC. Ben Carson arranged the meeting in consultation with Family Research Council President Tony Perkins and Bill Dallas of United in Purpose. “As many as 500 conservative leaders from around the nation are expected to attend the invitation-only event,” Fox News reports. Among those reportedly convening the meeting: Southern Baptist Convention President Ronnie Floyd, James Dobson and Ralph Reed.

MORE ON THE DEMOCRATIC RACE:

Bill Clinton in Cayey, Puerto Rico, last week. The Democratic primary (with 67 delegates at stake) will take place on June 5. (Erika P. Rodriguez © 2016)

INVISI-BILL --> Under the radar, Bill Clinton finds his voice as a supporting actor,” by Karen Tumulty: In a rural roadside restaurant in the heart of Puerto Rico, the lunch rush was over, leaving only a handful of patrons to see Bill Clinton emerge from an SUV. He lingered a bit with groups at the bar, accepting a cold beer and toasting with them: “To Hillary!” “Clinton’s schedule many days is more packed than Hillary’s, though by design it rarely registers on the national radar. It is a low-altitude tactical deployment that leaves a light footprint, aiming to maximize his value as a political asset without stirring the negatives that also trail him.… His new duties have not come without stumbles, and they conjure the implications of a Clinton restoration. Presidential spouses are expected to exert their influence over china patterns, not China policy. No one, however, is under the illusion that Bill Clinton would remain cloistered in the East Wing. ... Still open to question is whether voters will welcome his return or worry about it.”

Bill and Hillary Clinton attend church in the 1970's. (Photo from the Clinton House Museum--Fayetteville, Arkansas)

Who they are --> “In 1978 custody case, Hillary Rodham took the side of a father”: Rarely does a story tell us something about HRC that we did not already know, because she has been in the public eye for a quarter of a century. In a revealing piece on a case that she took up as a 30-year-old lawyer in Arkansas, The Boston Globe’s Annie Linskey reports that the recent Yale Law grad defended the man in a nasty child custody dispute and used novel, Constitutional arguments in family court. She knew the couple socially before their divorce, but she took the man’s side (probably because he was a county chairman for her husband’s gubernatorial campaign.)

  • “Sanford Beshear said he sought out Clinton to be his attorney in part because of her gender. Persuading a judge in the Deep South to award full custody to a man would be tricky, and he wanted every edge in the case.”
  • To win the case, Clinton played what now could be called ‘the man card,’ arguing to the judge that men in child custody cases don’t get a fair shake. ‘Case law which permits discrimination against men because of their sex in the award of a child’s custody is neither socially nor psychologically supportable and violates the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Arkansas and United States Constitution,’ Clinton wrote then. It was a novel line of argument for the time, said Sam Hilburn, a Little Rock attorney who has practiced family law in the state for 44 years.”
  • Hillary stayed at her client’s house because the town of Rison was too small to have a hotel.
Bernie Sanders speaks during a rally in Irvine, California, last night. (Matt McClain/The Washington Post)

-- Bernie's coming cash crunch: FEC filings that posted late Friday night showed Clinton and Sanders each raised about $26 million in April. “But Sanders was spending money at a far greater rate and had just $5.8 million on hand at the end of the month, compared with Clinton’s reported cash on hand of $30 million,” Tom Hamburger reports.

-- Sanders visited the U.S.-Mexican border, between San Diego and Tijuana. The Vermont senator repeated his calls for comprehensive immigration reform, calling the current system “very, very broken.”

-- Sanders supporters are suing to extend the voter registration deadline in California until the June 7 primary, citing voter confusion over the rules. (Los Angeles Times)

-- Some liberals worry that Sanders's chance to build a lasting legacy may be slipping away. From the New York Times’ Jonathan Mahler and Yamiche Alcindor: "Far from laying the foundation to transform his campaign into a movement, Mr. Sanders is wrapped up in the race itself, sharpening his attacks on Clinton and demanding she debate him before California’s primary. And many of his supporters are following his cue. 'He has the greatest appeal of any progressive candidate we’ve seen probably since Teddy Roosevelt, but that has to be converted into an on-the-ground machine that delivers,' said Howard Dean, who ran his own insurgent campaign for the nomination in 2004." 

-- The Sanders campaign is angry about extensive media coverage of a draft proposal by a Berkeley activist that calls on Bernie to drop out after June 7 and transfer his movement to a new entity. “The only person who will decide what comes after voting ends is the senator,” a senior Sanders campaign adviser told BuzzFeed. “There will be a lot of wannabes who think they have all the answers. It would be best if they let the senator decide that.”

Donald Trump accepts the National Rifle Association's endorsement on Friday in Louisville. (Reuters/John Sommers II)

SUNDAY SHOW HIGHLIGHTS:

Not ready for primetime --> Trump was all over the place when asked whether he supports guns in schools, giving a series of ambiguous responses on “Fox and Friends.” “I don’t want to have guns in classrooms. Although, in some cases, teachers should have guns in classrooms,” he said. He then offered more mixed statements about teachers and guns and schools: “I’m not advocating guns in classrooms. ... In some cases — and a lot of people have made this case — teachers should be able to have guns, trained teachers should be able to have guns in classrooms.” On Friday, Trump vowed to eliminate gun-free zones across the United States. (Janell Ross)

-- Clinton, meanwhile, accused Trump of being beholden to the gun lobby, saying “more kids" will be "at risk of violence and bigotry” if he wins: “Unlike Trump, I will not pander to the gun lobby, and we will not be silenced and we will not be intimidated,” she said at a Trayvon Martin Foundation event in Fort Lauderdale. (Anne Gearan)

-- Sanders endorsed the primary challenger to DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz. “Clearly I favor her opponent,” he told CNN's Jake Tapper. “His views are much closer to mine. Let me also say this, in all due respect to the current chairperson: If [I am] elected president, she would not be reappointed chairwoman of the DNC.” Chris Cillizza describes this an act of war against the Democratic establishment. 

-- Clinton refrained from calling on Sanders to drop out. On “Meet the Press,” she said he has “every right to finish off his campaign however he chooses,” though she did not back away from her declaration that she will be the party nominee. “I do think there will then be the obvious need for us to unify the party,” she said. “I faced the same challenge in 2008.”

-- Mark Cuban said he is open to being Trump OR Clinton’s running-mate. The Dallas Mavericks owner -- who describes himself as “fiercely independent" -- laid out his terms for Chuck Todd. “If [Trump] asked me, I'd be like, 'Okay, Donald. Let's talk about it. But we're both going to have to dig in and really look and understand the issues so we can come up with solutions.” The entrepreneur said he would “absolutely” entertain a conversation about running with Clinton, but she would have to go “more to the center.” What is it with billionaires and their egos? 

WAPO HIGHLIGHTS:

Lisa Duffy and her husband Peter Reeve in Peterborough. They are both local UKIP councillors working on the campaign for Vote Leave. Their city was rated in a recent poll as the second-most eurosceptic place in Britain. (Photo by Shannon Jensen Wedgwood/For The Washington Post)

-- “Immigration backlash at the heart of British push to leave the E.U.,” by Griff Witte: Not a day goes by when a foreign leader, renowned economist or military chief doesn’t warn of the dire consequences of a “Brexit” — for Britain and for the world. But if Britain does vote to leave the E.U. on June 23, analysts say that a powerfully emotional backlash against decades of immigration in cities like Peterborough will be the primary driver“For in Peterborough — by at least one measure the least E.U.-friendly city in Britain — Europe doesn’t mean the world’s most prosperous and peaceful continent. It means a mass influx of Eastern European immigrants across open borders that residents say has transformed this city beyond all measure. ‘Immigration is by far the best issue for the ‘Leave’ campaign,’ Freddie Sayers, editor in chief of the polling firm YouGov, wrote in a recent analysis. ‘If the coming referendum were only a decision on immigration, the Leave campaign would win by a landslide.’”

The anti-E.U. campaign’s emphasis on walling off the British Isles generates comparisons to the xenophobia and nativism of another Western political movement: “The Leave campaign is really the Trump campaign with better hair,” said former British secretary William Hague.

Lt. Sasha Larkin, of the Las Vegas Police Department, attends a service at the Islamic Association of Las Vegas. (Randi Lynn Beach/For The Washington Post)

-- “Police in Las Vegas forge close ties to the city’s Muslim community,” by John M. Glionna: In 2008, Las Vegas police officers were chasing a believed crack peddler on foot when he entered a nearby mosque. Breathless, the officers stopped at the gate. “We were like, ‘Can we even go in there?” said Lt. Sasha Larkin. “Now, Larkin and a cadre of officers are regular guests at a half-dozen mosques across this gambling mecca as part of a concerted outreach effort to the Muslim community. They grasp the tensions between Shiite and Sunni factions and have learned to observe key Islamic customs — officers remove their shoes, and female officers don hijabs during Friday prayer sessions. In an effort to build trust, they have emerged as empathetic problem solvers, helping religious leaders cut through city red tape, responding to reports of vandalism and cleaning up trash and abandoned vehicles.” And at a time when many police departments are trying to build better ties to the country’s Muslims community, Las Vegas’s program could prove a model.

Ursula Burns, chairman and CEO of Xerox, arrives with her husband at the White House for a state dinner in March. (Reuters/Mary F. Calvert)

-- Corporate America is back-sliding on diversity. Two data points in today's newspaper: 

1. Ursula Burns, the first African American woman to run a Fortune 500 company, will step down as chief executive when the struggling business splits itself in two later this year. That means there will be no black female CEOs among America’s largest businesses, Jena McGregor notes.

2. Discovery Communications has made a big deal about trying to appeal to female and minority audiences. But the company has an all-male, all-white board of directors, Abha Bhattarai notes.

SOCIAL MEDIA SPEED READ:

Reaction to Trump's NRA endorsement:

Bill Clinton campaigned for Hillary in St. Croix:

Kevin McCarthy's son graduated from Georgetown:

Ben Sasse attended the Special Olympics:

Linda Sanchez ran in her first Color Run:

Mark Meadows got caught in a massive TSA line:

Lisa Murkowski celebrated her birthday with some gardening:

Vicky Hartzler introduced Instagram to her kittens:

A fun piece of history that reminds us there have been Democratic divisions before: 

GOOD READS FROM ELSEWHERE:

-- Politico, “The Pentagon's battle of the bands,” by Ellen Mitchell: “During the Civil War, Union Gen. Philip Sheridan famously ordered his musicians to play their instruments loudly and ‘never mind if a bullet goes through a trombone, or even a trombonist, now and then.’ But that storied tradition now comes with a hefty price tag. According to Pentagon data from fiscal year 2015 … the military spends at least $437 million a year on musicians, their instruments, special uniforms, travel and related costs. That has placed them in the crosshairs of lawmakers who say it makes no sense to lavish this kind of money on music when the Pentagon is scaling back combat troops. Entertainment is ‘just not the role of the military,’ said Rep. Martha McSally … She and other lawmakers are ramping up the pressure with new legislation that would require the Pentagon to determine whether it could ease cuts in combat units by reducing the number of musicians. For other lawmakers, though, those are fighting words.”

-- Yahoo News, “Mission not quite accomplished: Obama’s antiterrorism legacy,” by Daniel Klaidman and Olivier Knox: Obama declared that it was time to “define the nature and scope of the struggle, or it will define us.” He was pointing out the danger of being stuck in a post-9/11 mindset of overreaction. But now battlefield assessments are more dire and the threat is metastasizing – and talk of winding down the terror wars has been dropped from the Obama administration’s message. In an interview, deputy National Security adviser Ben Rhodes likened the counterterrorism strategy to “Plan Colombia” -- the 1990s-era U.S. initiative to combat Colombian drug cartels and leftist insurgents -- saying that the U.S. has assumed “a counterterrorism posture that resembles less a war than a mix of counterterrorism efforts and military support to countries that are dealing with fractured states and civil conflicts.”

HOT ON THE LEFT:

Padres in hot water over national anthem mixup,” from the San Diego Union Tribune: “The San Diego Gay Men's Chorus is calling for an investigation of a mixup that occurred at a San Diego Padres game Saturday night, when a recording of a woman's voice was played over 100 male chorus members who took the field to perform the national anthem. Saturday was scheduled as a ‘Pride Night’ game, aimed at engaging lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender baseball fans. Members of the chorus said they were shocked and embarrassed by the incident, and want to find out how it happened. ‘I really want to believe that it was an error,’ said Bob Lehman, executive director of the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus. ‘But the first thought was, did they do this on purpose?’”

 

HOT ON THE RIGHT

This Man Saved A Girl From Being Stabbed To Death, And Now Target Is Suing Him For It,” from The Federalist: “In 2013, Michael Turner saved the life of a 16-year-old girl who had been viciously attacked and stabbed in a Target store in Pennsylvania. And instead of thanking him for protecting its customers and preventing them from being murdered, Target is now suing him for his heroism …. Meadows and her family vehemently disagree with Target’s legal assault on Turner, calling Turner’s actions heroic and crediting them with preventing Meadows’ murder. The Meadows family has sued the store, claiming that the retail company had inadequate security, and alleging that the store, by suing Turner, is just trying to blame someone else for Target’s own refusal to protect the safety and security of its customers.”

DAYBOOK:

On the campaign trail: Trump has meetings in Trump Tower, including with Bob Corker. Both Democrats are in Los Angeles.

At the White House: President Obama is in Vietnam, where he will hold severak bilateral meetings. Vice President Biden meets with senior advisers.

On Capitol Hill: The Senate meets at 3 p.m. The House meets at 2 p.m. for legislative business, with 30 suspension votes postponed until 6:30 p.m.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: 

"If we don't remember, we absolutely will forget." -- Libertarian vice presidential candidate William Weld, the former Republican governor of Massachusetts, defends his comparison of Trumpism to Kristallnacht. 

NEWS YOU CAN USE IF YOU LIVE IN D.C.:

-- Today is the LAST DAY of cold, gray weather before temps get warmer and drier (hooray!). The Capital Weather Gang forecasts: “Today is not as rainy or cool as Saturday and Sunday, but showers are around and about – with the greatest coverage perhaps in our southern areas (on Sunday, they focused in our northern areas). Under cloudy skies, highs are mostly in the mid-to-upper 60s. If we’re lucky we may experience a dry interval – with the best opportunity between late morning and mid-afternoon.”

-- The Nationals beat the Marlins 8-2.

-- Former Wizards player Etan Thomas shamed a white woman whom he says denied him a seat on the train because he is black. She then offered it to a white man. Thomas posted her photo and described the incident in a Facebook post. (Cindy Boren)

-- Maryland’s medical marijuana commission abruptly capped the number of businesses that can process marijuana into pills, oils and other products, delivering a blow to people who hope to profit off the drug's legalization. (Aaron Gregg and Fenit Nirappil)

VIDEOS OF THE DAY:

SNL did another great cold open, with Hillary and Bernie at a bar:

Seth Meyers broke down the Democratic division:

If you missed it, our video team created a 3-minute summary of Trump's NRA speech:

Trump praised and poked fun at Christie during last Thursday night's New Jersey fundraiser:

"No more Oreos" for Christie, Trump said:

Watch everyday men take the FBI fitness test:

Women did it, too:

West Point posted a video of its graduating class in which one student appears to be texting while marching: 

This Canadian couple got married at a huge cat sanctuary in California:

How to do the perfect pull-up, according to the teen who holds multiple world records:

Finally, have you met "Chewbacca Lady" yet? The Texas mom's infectious laugh has gone viral. With so much trouble in the world, we try to leave you with something uplifting every day. Behold, the face of true joy: