THE BIG IDEA: Salman Rushdie floated last fall that Donald Trump is a Democratic plant whose ultimate goal is to get Hillary Clinton elected president. To many conservatives, this feels less and less facetious.
The presumptive GOP nominee has spent the past few weeks doing almost everything you would do if you were trying to throw an election, from attacking a federal judge over his Mexican heritage to not building a serious ground game or actively raising the money necessary to wage a credible campaign for the presidency.
At the end of a day that started with Trump firing his campaign manager (much more on that below), he filed an embarrassing May fundraising report late last night with the FEC. Despite raising $3.1 million and loaning himself another $2 million, Trump began this month with less than $1.3 million cash on hand.
Clinton, by comparison, raised $28 million and started off June with $42 million in cash. Bernie Sanders, with his campaign winding down, still brought in $15.6 million last month and had $9.2 million cash on hand.
“If fundraising is, at its root, a test of whether you can get people to vote for you with their checkbooks, Trump failed in May,” Chris Cillizza assesses. “And he failed with every possible advantage working for him: Momentum, decent-to-good polling and, at least for part of the month, a Republican Party that seemed willing to unify behind him.”
-- To be sure, Trump is not running anything close to a conventional campaign. And we might be making a mistake judging him by those standards. A big part of his appeal is that he is unorthodox. He beat better-funded Republicans in the primary, and he can afford to raise less than Clinton because of the free media attention he commands and the sheer force of his personality. But being outraised so dramatically (nine-to-one!) undeniably puts him at a palpable disadvantage in the nuts-and-bolts side of 2016. And a general election is a far different beast than a Republican nominating contest.
-- Trump spent $6.7 million in May. That’s down from $9.4 million in April, but it’s actually a pretty stunning amount when you consider that he’s not advertising or building a serious field operation. So where did all the money go? Matea Gold and Anu Narayanswamy report that the campaign paid out more than $1 million to Trump-owned companies and to reimburse his own family for travel expenses. Here are some of the campaign's biggest expenditures:
- Campaign swag and printing - $958,836: Hats, pens, T-shirts, mugs and stickers
- Air charters - $838,774: “Nearly $350,000 of the money spent on private jets went to Trump's own TAG Air.”
- Event staging and rentals - $830,482: This includes the fees for renting facilities such as the Anaheim Convention Center ($43,000) and the Fresno Convention Center ($24,715). But the biggest sum went to Trump's own Mar-A-Lago Club, which was paid $423,317. Meanwhile, the Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Florida, got $35,845, while the Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Fl., was paid $29,715. And Trump’s son Eric’s wine company received nearly $4,000.
-- The FEC reports show that Trump has about 70 staffers total, one-tenth as many as Clinton’s 683. But, instead of rushing to staff up, he bragged about it during an interview with Bill O’Reilly on Fox News last night.
-- More problems: Donations through the “Trump Victory Fund,” expected to help boost his general-election coffers, have also trickled in slower than expected, Matea notes. The numbers really are startling when compared to Mitt Romney’s at this point four years ago. In May 2012, the former Massachusetts governor raised more than $34 million and ended the month with more than $60 million in the bank. Nearly $26 million that month came through the Romney Victory Fund. (The Republican National Committee itself took on $2 million more debt last month.)
-- One of the problems with Trump depending on the RNC: Many state party leaders don’t like him. Because he’s not building his own field operation, he’s depending on the official GOP apparatus. In Ohio, that means leaning on loyalists to Gov. John Kasich, who is withholding his endorsement, the Columbus Dispatch notes. Democrats say they now have 150 full-time employees on the ground in Ohio, compared to 50 paid staff from the RNC, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
-- The pro-Clinton super PAC Priorities USA, meanwhile, had its best fundraising month yet, raising more than $12 million during the month of May. "The organized and well-funded push for Clinton contrasts sharply with the chaos that surrounds the groups supporting Trump,” Matea reports. “At least five super PACs are in the mix, creating confusion among donors unsure where to put their money." (There is little data available from most of the groups, but "one of the first groups on the scene, Great America PAC, has raised just $3.5 million since forming in February.)
-- Here’s a flavor of the overnight reaction to Trump’s dismal May numbers:
For those wondering "what does $1.3 million in the bank mean?"— Phil Mattingly (@Phil_Mattingly) June 21, 2016
Answer: it's the equivalent of a House member w/ a semi-competitive seat.
From the New York Times:
Larger effect of Trump showing just over $1M on hand: the remaining on the fence donors have new rationale to withhold their cash— Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) June 21, 2016
From a leading GOP election lawyer:
& the fact that the next $45 million raised for campaign can be used to pay himself. Huge prob for potential donors! https://t.co/RTBqFN5jIE— Charlie Spies (@cspiesdc) June 21, 2016
If you're a vendor and you see @realDonaldTrump's report, do you honestly think you're gunna get paid for your work?— Emily Cahn (@CahnEmily) June 21, 2016
From Jeb Bush’s former communications director:
As The Post’s Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt puts it, “If this were a beauty pageant, Trump would want the crown and the adoration but not the mandatory year of appearances at charity events and visits to the troops. … He seems to have no interest in doing the things that most candidates, and up until now all presidents, have had to do. Listen to advisers, for example. Have advisers. Read policy papers. Read anything but his own reviews.”
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WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING:
-- Clinton leads Trump in Florida by 8 points (47 percent to 39 percent) and now ties him in Ohio (40-40), after trailing by 4 points last month, according to Quinnipiac University polls released this morning. They’re statistically tied 42-41 in Pennsylvania.
- Both candidates continue to have net negative favorability ratings. Clinton is viewed positively by 39 percent and negatively by 53 percent, compared to 33-61 for Trump.
- In the three battlegrounds, twice as many voters say Clinton is better prepared to be president than Trump (60 percent to 31 percent). She leads on the question of who is more intelligent (52-33) and who has higher moral standards (47-36). Meanwhile, voters are divided on whether Trump is more honest and trustworthy than Clinton – 43 percent for him to 40 percent for her -- and voters in Ohio and Pennsylvania find him more inspiring.
-- HRC leads DJT by 7 points (47-40) in a national Monmouth University survey. Her margins hold across the top 10 “battleground” states of 2012, where she leads Trump 47-39 and among likely voters 49-41. The data bear out that this election is becoming a referendum on Trump: Six in 10 registered voters said stopping Trump from assuming the presidency is important.
-- Trump is deeply unpopular with voters of color: 88 percent of African American and Hispanic voters view Trump unfavorably, according to an analysis of last week's Washington Post/ABC poll. Three in four voters from each group saying they “strongly dislike” the Republican nominee. (That’s 30 points higher than his 59 percent unfavorable ratings among white voters.) Clinton, in contrast, is almost as popular among minorities as Trump is unpopular: “Averaging the two most recent Washington Post-ABC News polls, Clinton has a favorable rate of 78 percent with African Americans and 70 percent with Hispanics. She is viewed favorably by 31 percent of whites.”
-- At least six were killed after teacher protests in Mexico turned violent. From Joshua Partlow: “Teachers canceled classes in (in the southern state of) Oaxaca after the violence, where protesters threw rocks and molotov cocktails and set vehicles ablaze. Witnesses reported that police fired into the crowds.” More than 100 people were injured, marking the bloodiest moment in a conflict that has intensified during the administration of President Enrique Peña Nieto.
-- Four gun control amendments failed in the Senate last night, largely on party line votes. From Karoun Demirjian: The Senate voted 47 to 53 to reject a measure from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) to let the attorney general deny firearms to any suspected terrorists. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota was the sole Democrat to vote against the measure, while Republican Sens. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Mark Kirk of Illinois, both of whom face tough re-election contests, voted for it.
Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins is still actively trying to forge a narrower compromise, which would prevent people on the smaller “No Fly List” from buying guns. Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Heidi Heitkamp are participating in the talks. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) said he is also working with Collins to draft a compromise and expects “to get a vote this week.” A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said there would be more information about plans for Collins’s proposal once it is formally filed. But leading Democrats said that it is too narrow and would allow too many potential terrorists to fall through the cracks. Harry Reid said Democrats still want to see if Collins could “drum up the 20 votes or so” from Republicans for the proposal, so a vote would not be just “a gesture in futility.” That's not to mention that such a compromise would likely die in the House.
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) says Republicans are now culpable for future attacks: “We’ve got to make this clear, constant case that Republicans have decided to sell weapons to ISIS,” he told Mike DeBonis and Karoun. “That’s what they’ve decided to do. ISIS has decided that the assault weapon is the new airplane, and Republicans, in refusing to close the terror gap, refusing to pass bans on assault weapons, are allowing these weapons to get in the hands of potential lone-wolf attackers. We’ve got to make this connection and make it in very stark terms.” (Dana Milbank has more in his column.)
GET SMART FAST:
- A team of Greek conservationists launched a nine-month restoration project to repair Jesus’s tomb, aimed at restoring the centuries-old chapel built around the site where Christians believe Jesus was buried and rose from the dead. In doing so, they will become the first people to glimpse the holy shrine in more than 200 years. (William Booth)
- The Supreme Court gave police more power to stop and question people on the streets, relaxing a so-called exclusionary rule that bans the admission of unlawfully-seized evidence. Justice Sonia Sotomayor issued a blistering 12-page dissent, saying it would exacerbate illegal stops of minorities. (Robert Barnes)
- SCOTUS also declined to review assault weapons bans in New York and Connecticut, the result of a court that's split 4-4 on Second Amendment jurisprudence. (Robert Barnes)
- The FBI released a transcript of the conversations Orlando gunman Omar Mateen had with authorities, reinforcing that the 29-year-old was at least partly inspired by the Islamic State. (Matt Zapotosky and Mark Berman)
- A 51-year-old Pennsylvania man was arrested after authorities found 12 young girls living in his home, including a girl who was “gifted” to him “in thanks" for helping a family out of financial ruin. The girls range in age from age 18 to 6 months. (Sarah Larimer)
- The Florida activist who landed a gyrocopter on the lawn of the Capitol to protest campaign finance laws began serving his 120-day prison sentence. (CNN)
- Dennis Hastert is scheduled to report to prison this week in Minnesota, beginning a 15-month sentence for a hush money case that revealed the former Speaker’s sexual abuse of two young boys. (AP)
- Apple CEO Tim Cook is hosting a breakfast fundraiser for Paul Ryan next week. The tech giant, which has refused to cooperate with the U.S. government in terrorism investigations, is stepping up its courtship of Republican lawmakers. (Politico)
- Two independent research firms have confirmed an assessment by the Democratic National Committee that its network was compromised by Russian government hackers. Someone going by the moniker "Guccifer 2.0" claimed responsibility in an effort to deflect blame from Vladimir Putin's intelligence agencies. (Ellen Nakashima)
- Chinese government cyber-espionage has declined sharply since mid-2014, according to a new third-party intelligence report that credits U.S. indictments and the threat of economic sanctions. Either that, or they're just better than the Russians at not getting caught... (Ellen Nakashima)
- The Navy just concluded a rare multi-day deployment of two carrier strike groups to the Philippine Sea. The goal is to send the Chinese a message about American resolve in the South China Sea. (Dan Lamothe)
- A South Florida woman has been charged with threatening to bomb a mosque. Police said they received calls after she began circling a prayer room at the Islamic Foundation, pulling a package from her purse and saying “she didn’t care if they all died there.” She was not carrying an explosive device. (AP)
- A New York woman admitted to killing her fiancé on a kayak trip last year, removing a plug from his boat and taking away his paddle as he struggled to stay afloat in the Hudson River. His death was investigated as a tragic drowning, but investigators were stunned by the woman's lack of sadness or remorse. (New York Times)
- The 2015 Jeep that killed “Star Trek” actor Anton Yelchin outside his L.A. home was a model that had been recalled by the company due to gearshift issues, leading drivers to accidently leave the car in neutral when they think it is safely in park. Early reports suggest this is what happened to Yelchin. (New York Times)
GETTING HIS ACT TOGETHER OR PICKING A SCAPEGOAT?
-- Trump fired his campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, yesterday under pressure from his family and the RNC. From Philip Rucker, Jose A. DelReal and Sean Sullivan: “A Trump loyalist whose mantra was ‘Let Trump be Trump,’ Lewandowski chafed at suggestions that the candidate behave more presidentially. His departure consolidates power around veteran GOP operative and lobbyist Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign chairman and senior strategist, who has been trying with limited success to professionalize the campaign. Lewandowski’s internal turf battles with Manafort were intense and at times paralyzed the campaign.” Five key details:
- The manager’s relations with senior staff at the Republican National Committee had so deteriorated that RNC Chairman Reince Priebus implored Trump to make a change.
- Lewandowski also ran afoul of Trump’s family, especially his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, who convinced Trump he needed a centralized management structure for the general election.
- Trump fired Lewandowski at a meeting Monday morning that was attended by the candidate’s adult children.
- Lewandowski was then escorted from Trump Tower flanked by security guards.
- He had urged Trump to name his VP pick early to try changing the narrative of the campaign, an idea the candidate disliked.
-- Michael Caputo, a communications and political adviser to Trump, resigned yesterday afternoon after sending the above tweet celebrating Lewandowski’s departure. He wrote in a resignation letter that the post “was too exuberant a reaction to this personnel move.”
How it’s playing –
-- “In some ways, Lewandowski’s story is the story of the Trump campaign,” Politico’s Kenneth Vogel and Ben Schreckinger argue: “The scrappy 42-year-old from the hardscrabble mill town of Lowell, Massachusetts, didn’t have any presidential campaign experience when he was plucked from relative obscurity to run Trump’s presidential campaign prior to its June 2015 launch. … Lewandowski quickly built a strong rapport with Trump by treating him with absolute reverence, unfailingly referring to him as ‘Mr. Trump’ or ‘Sir’ — even when Trump wasn’t around — and encouraging him to act on his bombastic instincts. But he’d grown increasingly reckless in his power struggles … And he’d already told associates more than once in the past few months that he was on the verge of quitting. So when he was informed he was being relieved of his once-dream job, Lewandowski didn’t argue. ‘The gloves had come off a while ago, and Corey spent a lot of energy fighting, which took away from the campaign,’ said one Lewandowski associate. He ‘was surrounded by enemies,’ the source added.”
-- Trump is getting defined in June, and it will be impossible for him to change perceptions of himself once they’ve gelled, Maggie Haberman says in The New York Times.
-- “Simply replacing Lewandowski won’t do anything to help the Trump campaign stop the slide if Trump does not have some kind of epiphany and come to realize that he is the root of his problems," writes Republican fixer Ed Rogers, on the PostPartisan blog. "So far, there is still no sign that Trump sees himself, what he thinks and how he expresses himself as the real problem.”
-- Lewandowski himself, however, painted a rosy portrait of the campaign during several surreal TV interviews after he was escorted out of Trump Tower, denying the campaign was beset by internal skirmishes and refusing to criticize Trump.
-- The Stop Trump movement now counts 400 delegates as allies, quickly transforming what began as an idea tossed around on social media into a force that could derail a national campaign,” Ed O'Keefe reports. “While organizers concede their plan could worsen internal party strife, they believe they are responding to deep-rooted concerns among conservatives about Trump. … ‘Short-term, yes, there’s going to be chaos,’ said Kendal Unruh, co-founder of the Free the Delegates movement. ‘Long-term this saves the party and we win the election. Everything has to go through birthing pains to birth something great.’ Unruh said her cause is winning support from ‘the non-rabble rousers. The rule-following, churchgoing grandmas who aren’t out protesting in the streets. This is the way they push back.’”
-- “A delegate revolt has become Republicans’ only option,” conservative columnist Michael Gerson argues in his column today.
MORE ON THE DONALD:
-- Trump will meet with nearly a thousand social conservative leaders this morning in New York City. Time Magazine's Elizabeth Dias previews: “What started as a closed-door gathering of 400 social conservative leaders to test Trump’s values has grown to a daylong conference of 1,000, involving nearly all the traditional political influencers of the religious right. For some, it is an effort to get Trump to better understand their policy positions. For others, it is a late-breaking effort to try to get the GOP’s most reliable voter base on board with its most polarizing candidate in decades.” Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee will moderate a Q&A session between leaders and Trump, and Jerry Falwell Jr. is expected to introduce Trump and give a series of remarks.Trump will also roll out an “Evangelical Executive Advisory Board," to include televangelist Paula White, James Dobson and Tony Suarez, per Bloomberg.
-- Trump walked back his suggestion that armed club-goers could have prevented the Orlando massacre, following heavy criticism from gun safety advocates and even the NRA: “When I said that if, within the Orlando club, you had some people with guns, I was obviously talking about additional guards or employees,” he tried to clarify Monday in a tweet. (Jose A. DelReal)
-- Joe Biden said Trump is "making religion the enemy” with his anti-Muslim rhetoric: “If we denigrate them, if we talk about them not being particularly useful and competent …. There’s 1.5 billion Muslims in the world,” he told CBS’s Charlie Rose. “If we make the religion the enemy, where the hell do you think we're going to get the cooperation?”
-- A man arrested at Trump's Las Vegas rally for trying to grab an officer’s gun told authorities he had been trying to assassinate the candidate. The 19-year-old, Michael Sandford, told officers he had been planning for “about a year” and was convinced he would die in the attempt, the AP reports. He said he also reserved a ticket for a Trump rally in Phoenix, scheduled for later in the day, as a backup. He told authorities that he went to the Battlefield Vegas shooting range the day before the rally and fired 20 rounds from a 9mm Glock pistol to learn how to use it. Employees at the range confirmed that.
MORE ON THE DEMOCRATIC RACE:
-- Clinton will give a series of talks on the economy this week, delivering a one-two punch. Today she will paint Trump as “reckless and misguided” in his business practices. Tomorrow she will unveil her own proposals for the country. The speech will mirror the point-by-point attack she delivered on Trump’s foreign policy earlier this month, Anne Gearan reports. “The main themes of Clinton’s attack Tuesday will include Trump’s views on the national debt, tariffs and trade, his tax proposal, and opposition to raising the minimum wage. As with the national security argument, Clinton will try to use Trump’s own words against him." (Watch a video previewing the speech from the campaign here.)
“If we were to put Donald Trump behind the steering wheel of the American economy, he would be very likely to drive us off of a cliff,” said Clinton’s chief policy adviser Jake Sullivan, echoing an analogy likely to be employed by the presumptive Democratic nominee. “And working families would bear the brunt of that impact in terms of lost jobs, lost savings, lost livelihoods.” As she reframes her economic arguments head-to-head with Trump, Clinton is also speaking indirectly to supporters of Sanders.
-- Former Obama economic adviser Jacob Leibenluft joined the Clinton campaign, signaling close coordination between the president and HRC. Leibenluft, who has served on Obama’s economic team since 2008, has focused heavily on job training, apprenticeships and the minimum wage, says CNBC’s John Harwood.
-- Sanders returned to the Capitol yesterday and cast his first votes since JANUARY 2! From David Weigel: “Sanders cast his vote on the first of four gun safety amendments before most of his colleagues showed up, then ducked into the cloakroom. When he returned, he sat for a while with Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), the only colleague who'd endorsed him, and the two were occasionally, happily interrupted by well-wishers of both parties."
-- Coming attraction: Rubio told a Post reporter on his way out of the Capitol last night that his announcement about running for the Senate again is coming "sooner rather than later." But he would not say if he's made a decision or not. Multiple outlets have reported that he's almost certainly going to get in.
-- It is no secret that Rubio would really only run for reelection to the Senate because he has been persuaded that this is the best way to position himself for another presidential bid in 2020. The 45-year-old is in for some blistering attacks on this front in Florida. The Tampa Bay Times's Alex Leary offers a taste: "Rubio's ambition is one of the immediate challenges he’ll face if he goes forward with the plan. Would-be rival Carlos Beruff asked the million dollar question: 'The most important question for Marco Rubio to think about today as he decides whether to run for reelection: Are you willing to look the voters of Florida in the eye and commit to serving out an entire 6-year term in the U.S. Senate? Do you commit to not running for President in 2020? Do you pledge to truly serve the people of Florida by showing up to work and not missing votes or committee hearings? ... If Rubio runs and refuses to make this pledge, the voters of Florida have a simple choice ... do you want Marco Rubio, a career politician who will simply use the Senate as a launching pad for his future political ambitions?' Beruff and others have begun to compare Rubio to his 2010 nemesis Charlie Crist."
THE LATEST ON THURSDAY'S BREXIT REFERENDUM:
-- “After killing resets the tone, a possible turning point," by Griff Witte and Karla Adam in London: “Britain’s march toward an exit from the E.U. appeared to be slowing Monday, and may have been halted altogether, as calls for a more civil tone in the bitterly fought debate sowed division among those who favor leaving the 28-member bloc. After a week in which polls showed a surge toward the ‘leave’ campaign, more recent surveys reflect a rebound for ‘remain.’ Markets cheered the news, with stocks surging globally, and particularly in Britain. The FTSE 100 closed up more than 3 percent, and the pound rose almost 2 percent against the dollar, one of its biggest one-day gains of the past decade.” To be sure, the poll averages show a dead heat. But investors are feeling growing confidence.
-- Pro-E.U forces are not explicitly politicizing the murder of British MP Jo Cox, as the Eurasia Group writes in a note for clients, but it provides “a subtle narrative" framed around the question: "Is this really who we want to be?"
-- The Brexit camp is in turmoil over whether advocates have gone too far in fanning anxiety over immigration. The xenophobic rhetoric has prompted some moderate Brexit supporters to reverse course in the final days. Former British minister Sayeeda Warsi announced she is now voting to remain. “The vision that the Brexit campaign is presenting is not the vision that me and other Brexiters started off with a year ago,” she said Monday. “The ‘hello world’ approach to Brexit, which is open-minded, visionary, inclusive, has been lost. The moderate message has been lost. And instead we have reverted to a campaign that says: ‘The Turks are coming, the Syrians are coming, the refugees are coming, the Muslims are coming, the terrorists are coming.’” (The Guardian)
-- Elsewhere in the E.U., elites are growing increasingly worried that a successful “Brexit” vote would trigger a stampede of exits from the 28-member union. From Michael Birnbaum and Anthony Faiola: “Euro-skeptics across the continent are salivating at the prospect of Britain’s departure, hoping to sever their own territories from a map that stretches from the sunny coasts of Portugal to the frigid taiga of Finland. With populist parties surging across the continent, the Brits could be only the first to leave. ... At the moment, the list of countries that might consider bolting is relatively short: France, Denmark, the Netherlands and a handful of others. But experts say that could change quickly."
As the “leave” movement gained traction in Britain over weeks, poll numbers in other countries began to reflect the momentum: An Ipsos Mori poll last month found that 55 percent of French voters and 58 percent of Italian voters wanted plebiscites of their own.
Proponents of staying in the E.U. are struggling to mount arguments that appeal to the heart, not just the pocketbook: Part of the difficulty is that the bloc is now so large and diverse that there is no single, unifying selling point. “There is no European ideal that is clearly defined and on which all members would agree,” Latvia’s ambassador to the E.U. told The Post.
-- “As the GOP’s anti-Trump, Ben Sasse picked a big fight. What would it mean to win?” by Ben Terris: “Today, freshman senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska remains the only Republican in the U.S. Senate who has consistently, and vocally, opposed his party’s nominee. [But] without a conservative third-party campaign, Sasse looks to some less like a warrior in the ring and more like an agitator in the stands … If Trump wins the presidency, he runs the risk of being ostracized. If Clinton wins, he could be blamed. Does he see a path that other conflicted Republicans can’t find? Is he positioning himself for a 2020 presidential run? Or, is it possible that Sasse is simply standing on principle, that he sees a fight worth having, even if it’s one he might lose?” “What is he doing?” Ben Nelson, Nebraska’s former Democratic governor and senator, mused recently. “There’s certainly all kinds of speculation about it.”
-- “What actually happens when Trump blacklists a reporter,” by Paul Farhi: A day after Trump revoked The Post’s credentials to cover his campaign last week, one of the newspaper’s reporters walked into his rally in Greensboro, N.C., and began reporting on it. “The only difference was that the reporter, Jenna Johnson, entered on a general-admission ticket, not a press pass. Johnson’s experience says much about the practical impact of Trump’s efforts to banish news organizations whose reporting has displeased him. [While] getting on Trump’s blacklist does present a few logistical hassles … the real objections to Trump’s actions from the press aren’t about the inconvenience; they’re about the seemingly undemocratic nature of his actions. ‘When I was in Moscow, Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin gave me credentials to cover his reelection campaign to a second term even after several years of critical coverage of his crackdown on Russian media and rollback of democratic reforms,’ said Susan Glasser, the editor of Politico. ‘It is just astonishing that something like this is happening in the United States.’”
-- “I reported Omar Mateen to the FBI. Trump is wrong that Muslims don’t do our part,” by Mohammed A. Malik: “Trump believes American Muslims are hiding something. ‘They know what’s going on. They know that [Mateen] was bad,’ he said after the Orlando massacre. This is a common idea in the U.S. It’s also a lie. First, Muslims like me can’t see into the hearts of other worshipers. (Do you know the hidden depths of everyone in your community?) Second, Trump is wrong that we don’t speak up when we’re able. I know this firsthand: I was the one who told the FBI about Omar Mateen. … I had told the FBI about Omar because my community, and Muslims generally, have nothing to hide. I love this country, like most Muslims that I know. I vote. I volunteer. I teach my children to treat all people kindly. Trump’s assertions about our community – that we have the ability to help our country but have simply declined to do so – are tragic, ugly and wrong.”
SOCIAL MEDIA SPEED READ:
— ZIGNAL VISUAL: This word cloud of all Trump mentions across social and traditional media shows how much yesterday was dominated by the Lewandowski news. A conventional campaign would dump this kind of news on a Friday night to minimize how much coverage it gets. Not Trump...
Some of the choicest reaction: From Michelle Fields, who filed assault charges against Lewandowski earlier this year after he grabbed her after a rally...
From a former Breitbart reporter, who resigned when the site took the Trump campaign's side over its own reporter:
Lewandowski will long be remembered in campaign circles for his hands-on style.— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) June 20, 2016
Finally this campaign can get back on track with Paul Manafort in charge, said the arms dealer holding a briefcase of cash.— Rory Cooper (@rorycooper) June 20, 2016
Firing Lewandowski = big move by @realDonaldTrump 2 overhaul campaign. But doesn't account 4 fact that Trump's been running show all along.— David M. Drucker (@DavidMDrucker) June 20, 2016
Don't feel bad for Corey. You know he's going to write a tell all book and get a nice check for it (which Donald will sue him for 😞)— Comfortably Smug (@ComfortablySmug) June 20, 2016
This image went viral:
Here's what Democrats and advocacy groups were saying about the Senate votes on guns:
Ashamed & disgusted that the Senate works for the @NRA & not the majority of Americans who support basic solutions to stop gun violence.— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) June 20, 2016
Elizabeth Warren and Ben Sasse exchanged tweets:
This isn't true.— Ben Sasse (@BenSasse) June 20, 2016
You know it isn't true.
But that probably doesn't matter for your political purposes. https://t.co/uYum6Qrocp
Part of Sonia Sotomayor's dissent in a Fourth Amendment case went viral (check out The Post's video on her opinion here):
The Clintons went back to see their granddaughter:
Aidan, the 2nd grandchild of Bill & Hillary Clinton, has left the hospital. pic.twitter.com/gXXsw3ksou— Dan Merica (@danmericaCNN) June 20, 2016
The RNC congratulated the Cavaliers:
New RNC statement on Cavs' win ends "this team is just the first winner Cleveland will produce this summer!" pic.twitter.com/2yUy6izAdW— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 20, 2016
So did John Kasich:
Sherrod Brown showed his support:
Jeff Denham's daughter graduated from high school:
The scaffolding is finally coming down around the Capitol dome:
Finally, an evening shot of Air Force One:
Air Force One under a bright full moon. pic.twitter.com/2HjVc1Q60D— David Nakamura (@DavidNakamura) June 20, 2016
GOOD READS FROM ELSEWHERE:
-- New York Times Magazine cover story, “Will Trump Swallow the G.O.P. Whole?” by Mark Leibovich: “As suits a man occupying what might be the toughest political job in America, (Reince) Priebus does his best to stay availed of serene distractions. He plays jazz piano at home late at night and gazes into the 29-gallon saltwater fish tank that he keeps next to his desk. “You see that big eel?” Priebus asked one day, pointing out a black slithery creature on the bottom, before noting others. The big orange clown fish flailed at front and center. I asked Priebus if it reminded him of anyone. … No matter how much Trump has roiled the Republican water, it remained Priebus’s job to carry it."
“Priebus is not a man for extraordinary measures. He is an organization man in a time of disruption, runaway self-esteem and selfie campaigns. Party guys go along. It’s not always a fair fight. ‘I think people are living in Fantasy Land,’ he said, not saying whether he shared in the fantasy. He was playing a role, the party guy, the proprietor of the china shop in the time of the bull. There was something oddly comforting to me about this presence, as thankless and unenviable as the life of Priebus might seem these days. What could be better for a lifer apparatchik? Priebus made a perfect old-school foil to a new politics of blazing chaos. ‘It could be a great moment or a bad moment,” Priebus told me. “But it’s going to be a moment.’”
-- Slate, “He’s Obsessed With Menstruation: Former Apprentice crew members on their old boss, Donald Trump,” by Seth Stevenson: “We know about Trump’s on-camera persona as the star of The Apprentice: his tyrannical management style, his gruff demeanor, his terse catchphrase. But what was Trump like between takes, when the cameras were off but the crew was watching? Slate reached out to find people who’d worked on The Apprentice during Trump’s tenure.” Turns out, his on-set behavior is a lot like his campaign behavior:
- He frequently talked about the bodies of female contestants: “We shot in Trump Tower,” one midlevel producer recalled, “and he walked in one day and was talking about a contestant, saying, ‘Her breasts were so much bigger at the casting. Maybe she had her period then.’ He knows he’s mic’d and that 30 people are hearing this, but he didn’t care. That’s kind of him.”
- He likes to keep a fat guy around: “There was a fat contestant who was a buffoon and a [expletive],” recalls the producer. But Trump kept deciding to fire someone else. Later, I heard a producer talk to him, and Trump said, ‘Everybody loves a fat guy. People will watch if you have a funny fat guy around. Trust me, it’s good for ratings.’ I look at Chris Christie now and I swear that’s what’s happening.”
- He knows how to manipulate an audience: “He was always a narcissist, you can see that,” says Bill Pruitt, producer on Seasons 1 and 2. “You could see how keenly aware Trump became of the story he was telling as it was shaped by the producers around him … Reality TV is the public pillory now, the grand coliseum where we give the big thumbs up or thumbs down. And it shaped him.”
HOT ON THE LEFT:
“Pastor harassed over sign supporting Muslims,” from the York Daily News: “A Dallastown pastor said his church has received hangup phone calls after a Spring Grove Area school board member (who also happens to be an elected Trump delegate to the national convention) took issue with the church's sign wishing a blessed Ramadan to its Muslim neighbors and posted a photo of the sign on social media. Matthew Jansen ... left a message on the Rev. Christopher Rodkey's voicemail last weekend that he was shocked to see the sign in front of St. Paul's United Church of Christ. Rodkey said he posted the message on the sign because he thinks Muslims in the community are the favored scapegoat of the religious right. ‘This is a church that is interested in religious tolerance,’ he said.”
HOT ON THE RIGHT:
“Obama Will Finally Own Up to Drone War Dead,” from the Daily Beast: “The White House is finally releasing figures about how many innocents have died in U.S. drone attacks. But the claim of only 100 or so civilians slain seems almost laughably low. Obama is expected to issue an executive order as early as next week that for the first time would call for the U.S. annually to disclose how many civilians it believes it has killed in its airstrikes … The administration will announce that since Jan. 20, 2009, it believes airstrikes have killed roughly 100 civilians in countries including Yemen, Pakistan, Libya and Somalia, according to one defense official."
On the campaign trail: Clinton is in Hampton Roads, Va. and Columbus, Ohio. She will meet with House Democrats in D.C. tomorrow.
At the White House: Obama visits the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Vice President Biden travels to Dublin, Ireland, for meetings with Taoiseach Enda Kenny and President Michael Higgins.
On Capitol Hill: The Senate meets at 10 a.m. to resume work on the Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bill. The House meets at 2 p.m. for legislative business, with 22 suspension votes expected around 6:30 p.m.
QUOTE OF THE DAY:
“The next president, whoever he or she — most likely she — is going to be, needs to get these defense cuts set aside.” – Lindsey Graham (Politico)
NEWS YOU CAN USE IF YOU LIVE IN D.C.:
-- Some humidity and thunderstorms are on radar for this afternoon, the Capital Weather Gang forecasts: “A cool front sinks south across the area, offering scattered showers this morning followed by a break — maybe some sunshine? — and then a few thunderstorms this afternoon. Some of these storms could be strong or even severe, and they could produce locally heavy rain. High temperatures climb into the middle to upper 80s along with moderate humidity.”
-- The Nationals lost to the L.A. Dodgers 4-1.
-- A Loudoun County jury convicted former Ashburn IT executive Braulio Castillo of first degree murder, finding him guilty for killing his estranged wife in 2014 and then staging it as a suicide. (Tom Jackman)
-- “Kane Show” radio host Peter Deibler (on 99.5) was arrested in Maryland after his soon-to-be ex-wife accused him of second-degree assault. According to a protective order petition, Deibler reportedly grabbed her and threw her into a wall, resulting in a sprained knee, head injury, bruises and a black eye. (Emily Heil and Dan Morse)
-- Testimony has concluded in the trial of Caesar Goodson Jr., a former Baltimore police officer, in connection with the death of Freddie Gray. Goodson, who faces the most severe charges out of six officers, is expected to receive a verdict from the judge later this week. (Lynh Bui and Derek Hawkins)
VIDEOS OF THE DAY:
Police released the 911 audio from the fatal Disney alligator attack:
The White House released a 3-minute highlight reel of Obama's trip to Yosemite:
Journalists are laughing at this terrible HR video provided to employees of Tronc, formerly Tribune Publishing (it is not a parody):
This, though, is much worse. A bank manager in China beat some of his employees on stage, as other staffers were forced to watch, because they did not meet expectations:
Murdered MP Jo Cox received a standing ovation in Britain's House of Commons:
Finally, a flashback to last summer when thousands watched the sun rise over Stonehenge for the summer solstice: