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The Daily 202: Has Trump never read the Constitution?

Donald Trump leaves RNC headquarters yesterday. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

THE BIG IDEA: Sure, Donald Trump is not the kind of guy who carries around a pocket Constitution. He didn’t go to law school or teach Constitutional law, though to be fair many successful presidents have not.

But, in all seriousness, it is increasingly unclear that the presumptive Republican nominee has ever actually read the foundational document for the republic he aspires to lead.

One of the most puzzling talking points that top Republicans, including Paul Ryan, have used to justify their support is that Trump respects “the separation of powers.” In May, the Speaker said it was one of “the core principles that tie us all together.”

What that’s based on remains unknown.

During his closed-door meeting with House Republicans yesterday, Michigan Rep. Tim Walberg asked Trump what his understanding is of Article I (which enumerates the powers of Congress).

“I think his response was, ‘I want to protect Article I, Article II, Article XII,’ going down the list. There is no Article XII,” Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) told reporters afterwards. “It was the normal stream of consciousness that’s long on hyperbole and short on facts.” [Sanford, who said in May he’ll vote for Trump, added: "He may be loose on some facts, reckless on some, but there’s not malicious intent there.”]

Other sources in the room confirmed the episode.

Trump then called himself “a constitutionalist” and warned that “we’re getting away from it,” according to detailed notes from a participant in the meeting, which were provided to my colleague Josh Rogin.

The Constitution, as every school child is taught, has only seven articles.

Those trying to excuse Trump’s flub charitably suggested that he was confused between the articles and the amendments. If so, it seems odd to emphasize his support for the Twelfth, which merely clarified how the Electoral College should work.

Either way, Trump clearly did not understand that he was being asked by Walberg about how he views the relationship between the executive and legislative branches.

It was reminiscent of when Trump quoted “Two Corinthians” during a January speech at Liberty University.

And it was another moment that gave intellectually-honest movement conservatives heartburn.

-- Is there any reason to think Trump does not see the Constitution – specifically its explicit limits on executive power – as negotiable, akin to the many contracts he’s agreed to with lenders and vendors only to later renege on?

He wants to “loosen” libel laws, so he could more easily sue news organizations who write “nasty” articles about him. There are centuries of First Amendment jurisprudence that would restrict his ability to do this.

He’s said he would push military commanders to go further than water boarding, even though that has been banned by federal law.

Many scholars believe Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims would be struck down as unconstitutional (due process, equal protection, religious freedom, etc.).

The candidate also insisted on “Meet the Press” earlier this year that the 14th Amendment does not guarantee birthright citizenship.

His attacks on Judge Gonzalo Curiel over his Mexican heritage raise alarm bells about his respect for the independent judiciary.

Trump has at times suggested that he might somehow be able to initiate the prosecution of Hillary Clinton over her emails if he’s elected, another signal he doesn’t understand the role of each branch. In March, asked about the kind of justice he’d name to the Supreme Court, he said he’d “probably appoint people that would look very seriously at [Clinton’s] email disaster because it’s criminal activity.”

-- Maybe this is why Trump admires Vladimir Putin so much? As Barack Obama pens an op-ed for today’s Financial Times calling for a strong NATO to stand firm against Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, one of Trump’s main foreign policy advisers is in Moscow criticizing the United States government. Carter Page, a former Merrill Lynch executive who previously advised the Russian state energy giant Gazprom, just gave a lecture chiding the U.S. for an “often-hypocritical focus on democratization, inequality, corruption and regime change” in its dealings with Russia, China and Central Asia. He also complained that Washington has missed opportunities to work with leaders such as Putin and China’s Xi Jinping because it ignored principles of “respect, equality and mutual benefit.”

The Post’s Andrew Roth attended the lecture and reports that, when one attendee asked Page whether he really believed the United States was a “liberal, democratic society,” Page told him to “read between the lines.” “If I’m understanding the direction you’re coming from, I tend to agree with you that it’s not always as liberal as it may seem,” he said. “I’m with you.”

-- The biggest news out of yesterday’s meetings on Capitol Hill was that Trump, in another blow to unity efforts, singled out three Senate Republicans who are not supporting him. During the closed-door meeting, he called Illinois’s Mark Kirk “a loser,” told Nebraska’s Ben Sasse that “you must want Hillary,” and clashed with Arizona’s Jeff Flake over comments about Mexican immigrants. From the story by Philip Rucker, Sean Sullivan and Paul Kane (with Kelsey Snell, David Weigel and Karoun Demirjian):

“You’ve been very critical of me,” Trump said after Flake introduced himself.

“Yes, I’m the other senator from Arizona — the one who didn’t get captured — and I want to talk to you about statements like that,” Flake responded, referring to John McCain.

Trump noted that he has not attacked Flake very hard on the campaign trail but threatened to begin doing so.

-- Trump then showed a lack of familiarity with Article I, Section Three. He predicted Flake, Sasse and Kirk will each lose this November. But only Kirk is up for reelection this year. Flake politely informed Trump that he is not on the ballot until 2018…

-- 13 of 45 GOP senators skipped the Trump meeting at NRSC headquarters. More than 200 House GOP members showed up at the Capitol Hill Club.

-- As Trump wrapped up with House members, he urged them to go tell reporters that the meeting had gone great. “It would great if you could say we had an unbelievable meeting. ‘Trump loves us. We love Trump.’ It’s going to be so good. Okay?” Trump said. “You gotta say great things.”

“I view the campaign as starting from the convention on, and maybe I could say from the end of the convention. That’s when I’m really starting,” Trump added. “Just stick with me, folks. I know what I’m doing, okay?”

-- A point of personal privilege: At the end of this week during which we celebrate our independence, if you are an elected official (or, frankly, just a citizen), please take a few minutes to read the Constitution here.

Welcome to the Daily 202, PowerPost's morning newsletter.
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-- At least two snipers opened fire on police officers during protests in Dallas, killing five officers and wounding seven others in the worst attack on U.S. law enforcement since 9/11. From Michael E. Miller, Travis M. Andrews and Tim Madigan: "After a peaceful march, the downtown suddenly exploded into violence at around 9 p.m. local time when gunshots echoed through the streets, sending protesters and police officers alike scattering for cover. Authorities said two civilians were also injured during the shooting. Four Dallas Police officers and one Dallas Area Rapid Transit officer were killed by 'snipers' perched atop 'elevated positions,' officials said. Videos circulating on social media showed an individual with an assault-style rifle shoot a police officer in the back at point-blank range. A gunman, believed to be the same shooter, then engaged in a violent, three-hour standoff with SWAT officers, police said. Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said (this morning) that the man in the standoff has died, but gave no other immediate details. Three other suspects were also in custody, Dallas Police Chief David Brown said during a press conference before the standoff’s end. Rawlings said one of those held was an African American woman."

  • Breaking: The chief said the gunman who engaged in the standoff "said he was upset about the recent police shootings." He was killed when police detonated an explosive.

-- Trump just issued a statement calling this "an attack on our country": “It is a coordinated, premeditated assault on the men and women who keep us safe. We must restore law and order. We must restore the confidence of our people to be safe and secure in their homes and on the street. The senseless, tragic deaths of two motorists in Louisiana and Minnesota reminds us how much more needs to be done. This morning I offer my thoughts and prayers for all of the victims’ families, and we pray for our brave police officers and first responders who risk their lives to protect us every single day. Our nation has become too divided. Too many Americans feel like they’ve lost hope. Crime is harming too many citizens. Racial tensions have gotten worse, not better. This isn’t the American Dream we all want for our children. This is a time, perhaps more than ever, for strong leadership, love and compassion. We will pull through these tragedies.”

Here's a mash-up of videos that were posted to social media during the shooting (warning: graphic images)--

-- Citing Dallas, Clinton canceled her campaign rally with Vice President Biden in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and Trump canceled his event in Florida with Chris Christie.

-- At a press conference in Warsaw, Poland, President Obama called the attack “vicious, calculated and despicable." He called on Americans to “profess our profound gratitude to the men and women in blue.” “We are horrified over these events,” he said, “and we stand united with the people and police department in Dallas.” 

It was the second time during a 12-hour period that Obama has had to address police-related violence from Warsaw. Last night, speaking at the same Marriott, he called for greater urgency on police reform, saying the police shootings that prompted the protests are “symptomatic of a broader set of racial disparities that exist in our criminal justice system.” “When people say black lives matter, it does not mean blue lives don’t matter. All lives matter,” Obama said. “But the big concern is that the data shows that black folks are more vulnerable to these kinds of incidents. This isn’t a matter of us comparing the value of lives. This is recognizing that there is a particular burden is being placed on a group of our fellow citizens and we should care about that. We can’t dismiss it.”

-- Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton called for a federal investigation into the police shooting of Philando Castile during a routine traffic stop, saying that he believes race was a factor in the 32-year-old's death. “Would this have happened if those passengers, the driver and the passengers, were white?” the Democrat said. “I don’t think it would have. … I think all of us in Minnesota are forced to confront that this kind of racism exists.” (Wesley Lowery, Lindsey Bever and Michael E. Miller)

-- Castile’s mother noted that her son was killed just days before his birthday. Known as Phil, he graduated from St. Paul’s Central High School before going to work for the St. Paul public school system’s nutrition services division in 2002. “Two years ago, he earned a promotion to a supervisory position at a new school: J.J. Hill Montessori Magnet School, where he managed the cafeteria. ‘He loved kids, even though he didn’t have any of his own,’ his mother said, noting that her son always helped out the children in need in the lunch line. ‘He’d give them an extra scoop of this and an extra scoop of that.’ Teachers and parents at J.J. Hill said they adored Castile, a warm and gentle presence who knew the names of each of the school’s more than 400 students.” (T. Rees Shapiro, Emma Brown and William Wan)

  • Parents at the school grappled with how to explain Castile’s death to their children: “[One parent said] she told her children that he was killed because ‘police were worried that they were in danger because he had brown skin.’ She said her oldest, age 10, told her that he thought such a thing didn’t happen anymore. Her eight-year-old told her it must be a bad dream. And her 6-year-old said it couldn’t happen because ‘that’s our guy.’ ‘He said, ‘Mom, can you tell the police that they were wrong?'’ … ‘’This is our guy, who served us lunch at J.J. Hill.‘” (Emma Brown)
  • Profile of his girlfriend who recorded the aftermath of the attack: “‘This is the brain on horror’: The incredible calm of Diamond ‘Lavish’ Reynolds.” 

-- Big picture: “Fatal shootings by police are up in the first six months of 2016, a new Post analysis finds." (Kimberly Kindy, Wesley Lowery, Steven Rich, Julie Tate and Jennifer Jenkins)

-- U.S. employment rebounded in JuneThe job market once picked up speed, allaying fears that the economy was headed for a sustained slowdown after a weak start to this year. "Employers added 287,000 jobs in June, up sharply from a meager addition of only 38,000 jobs in May," Ana Swanson reports. "The June figure was boosted by 35,000 workers at Verizon who were on strike in May but returned to their posts last month."

-- At least 35 were killed in a suicide bombing at a Shiite shrine north of Baghdad, the latest attack claimed by Islamic State militants. "Three suicide bombers dressed in military uniform opened fire on worshipers gathered at the shrine," our Mustafa Salim and Loveday Morris report from Baghdad. "Two then blew up their vests at the gate of a shrine, and a third was killed before he detonated. ... A medical official from Balad hospital said 65 more were injured." On Sunday, ISIS suicide bombers killed at least 292 people in Baghdad.


  1. The Obama administration finalized new safety and environmental regulations to limit offshore drilling in the Arctic Ocean. Falling oil prices, and unexpectedly dry wells, have led industry to largely steer clear of plans to drill in the area recently. (Chris Mooney and Brady Dennis)
  2. The U.S. plans to install a “sophisticated” anti-missile system in South Korea, drawing sharp protest from neighboring China. The Pentagon replied that the system will be used only to counter North Korean threats. (Missy Ryan)
  3. Britain’s Prime Minister contest winnowed down to two finalists, after members of Parliament voted to advance Theresa May, the home secretary, and Andrea Leadsom, the junior energy minister. The vote ensures the country will have its first female Prime Minister since Margaret Thatcher. (Griff Witte)
  4. The Transportation Department announced eight U.S. airlines have been licensed to open direct service between U.S. cities and Havana, with service beginning this fall. (Karen DeYoung)
  5. The House passed a bill approving wide-ranging reforms to federal personnel policies, aimed at addressing what Republicans have called a “lack of accountability” and federal worker misconduct. Obama threatened to veto the bill. (Eric Yoder)
  6. The Justice Department will make as much as $40 million available for victims of a 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak that was traced to a batch of steroid injections. The decision follows a years-long legal dispute over whether those affected by the outbreak are entitled to financial assistance. (Matt Zapotosky)
  7. German lawmakers passed a “no means no” law that makes it easier to prosecute rape suspects. The unanimously-passed measure is a considerable step forward for women’s rights. (New York Times)
  8. Bill Cosby lost another bid to get the criminal charges against him dismissed, as a Pennsylvania judge ruled that there is sufficient evidence for the entertainer to stand trial. (Manuel Roig-Franzia)
  9. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said the White House's directive on bathroom accommodations for transgender students puts "a gun to the head” of local school districts. (Moriah Balingit)
  10. Hall of Fame running back Paul Hornung sued helmet maker Riddell, saying the company should have warned players that its helmets could not shield against brain trauma. (New York Times)
  11. A new study finds that 40 percent of highly-rated sunscreens do not meet guidelines set by the American Academy of Dermatology, falling below minimum standards such as SPF and water resistence. (Ariana Eunjung Cha)
  12. A prominent weightlifter known as “Iranian Hulk” announced plans to travel to Syria to fight ISIS. He announced his decision in an Instagram video. (Melissa Etehad)
  13. A dis over a woman’s dress escalated into a 30-person brawl at a New York Wal-Mart, with customers tossing trash cans and swinging metal baseball bats at one another until police arrived. (Katie Mettler)


-- FBI Director James B. Comey testified for five hours before a House oversight committee hearing, as Republicans called for another investigation of Clinton’s private email use. From Matt Zapotosky: “Even under the relentless questioning from Republicans, Comey asserted unequivocally that it would have been unfair and virtually unprecedented to bring a criminal case against Clinton under current laws.” He did, however, also give Clinton’s political rivals some ammunition, “conceding that there was ‘evidence of mishandling’ classified information and that an FBI employee who did the same ‘would face consequences for this.’ He declined to say precisely what consequence he felt Clinton should face.”

-- The State Department is reopening its internal investigation of possible mishandling of classified information by Clinton or her top aides. Spokesman John Kirby said it is unclear how long the review will take or whether the results will be made public. (Carol Morello)

-- A Marine Corps officer who used his Yahoo email to send a classified message warning fellow servicemen about a potentially corrupt Afghan police chief will cite the lack of any consequences for HRC to challenge his involuntary separation from the service. The officer plans to cite Clinton’s treatment as just one of the “many and most egregious” examples of how severely he was punished in comparison. (Dan Lamothe)


-- Chris Christie was scheduled to join Trump on the campaign trail in Miami today, as part of the tryouts, but that's been canceled because of Dallas. Two unnamed sources told that the New Jersey governor is "highly unlikely" to be chosen. "The people who've been pushing the Christie narrative are Christie people," one of the sources, who has heard Newt Gingrich is the likely pick, told local reporter Claude Brodesser-Akner. However, the source added, "it's Trump — I doubt anyone really fully knows what he's going to do."

-- Trump and Gingrich struck up a rapport years ago in the clubhouse of Trump National Golf Club, perched on the lip of the Potomac River near the former House speaker’s home. Trump would occasionally fly in from New York to play golf, and that's how he got to know Newt, Robert Costa writes in a story on their relationship. “The number one thing I noticed is that Trump sees himself as a genuine educator who’s going to share the lessons he’s learning about how the system works, as he’s learning them,” Gingrich told Costa after he campaigned in Ohio Wednesday night. “It’s sobering to watch the audiences respond. They already believe in these messages, but they don’t have the words for it. His power is in the articulation.”

Gingrich also helped orchestrate Trump's controversial "Frozen" tweet: “That was a very deliberate reopening of the same conversation,” he said. “He has concluded that you guys in the media will kill him unless he destroys your credibility. Guaranteeing that the media is not believable is a significant building block of this campaign, as important as showing that Hillary Clinton is corrupt.”

-- Ted Cruz announced he will speak at the Republican convention, just one day after his team insisted there were no negotiations about him getting a speaking slot. Cruz and Trump met privately yesterday during the D.C. trip. A spokeswoman for the Texas senator said there was no discussion of an endorsement, but that Trump asked Cruz to speak and "he said he would be happy to do so." 

-- Uber is partnering with the DNC – but not the RNC – in the upcoming party conventions. “While Uber will serve as the official transportation provider for the Democratic convention in Philadelphia, offering an exclusive service that shuttles delegates and other top party officials around town, that perk won't be available to the GOP,” Politico reports. “An Uber spokeswoman said they failed to reach a deal with the RNC. The ride-hailing company joins a long list of corporations who have declined participation in the convention, including Apple and HP.”

-- In one of the weirdest stories of the day, Trump declined to rule out the possibility that he would forego actually becoming president if he beats Clinton in November. He coyly demurred when presented with the hypothetical scenario during an interview with the New York Times. “I’ll let you know how I feel about it after it happens,” he said at Trump Tower, flashing a “mischievous smile.”

-- RNC chairman Reince Priebus criticized Mitt Romney and other Republicans for their principled opposition to Trump, saying holding out is “unfathomable” and “maddening” during a radio interview. “Okay, so you win the Senate, you keep the House and now we just say well, some of these folks, ‘I don’t know if I’m on board yet,” he said on the Mike Gallagher Show. “Well then, what are you doing? You’re just wasting your time, you’re wasting everybody’s money, you’re wasting your breath.” (Buzzfeed)

-- Jared Kushner came under fire from his non-Trump family members after he revealed personal stories of World War II survival in order to defend Donald. Jose A. DelReal rounds up the drama in the House of Kushner: “I have a different take-away from my Grandparents' experience in the war,” Marc Kushner, Jared’s cousin, wrote on Facebook Thursday morning. “It is our responsibility as the next generation to speak up against hate. Anti-semitism or otherwise.”

Another cousin issued an even more blistering response: “That my grandparents have been dragged into this is a shame. Thank you Jared for using something sacred and special to the descendants of Joe and Rae Kushner to validate the sloppy manner in which you've handled this campaign,” wrote Jacob Schulder, another cousin. “[F]or the sake of the family name, which may have no meaning to you but still has meaning to others, please don't invoke our grandparents in vain just so you can sleep better at night. It is self serving and disgusting.”

-- Boston Globe, “Veterans who favor GOP grapple with 2016 choice,” by Akilah Johnson: “Harold Homefield can’t remember the last time he had this much trouble deciding who should be president. The World War II veteran has backed candidates from both parties in his 97 years, although he has most recently voted for Republicans, as he’s not a fan of President Obama. But this year? “I honestly don’t know, despite my PhD, who I should really vote for,” said the retired speech pathologist. Traditionally, veterans vote Republican — they did overwhelmingly in 2004, 2008, and 2012 — but little has been traditional about this presidential contest. Now, under the enlarged spotlight of a presidential campaign, local veterans are trying to figure out who will get their vote in a contest in which polls show neither candidate is well liked or thought of as a good commander in chief.”

-- The Des Moines Register, “Trump's candidacy leaves Iowa evangelicals divided, distraught,” by Jason Noble: “Supporting presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is simply not an option for most of Iowa's evangelical voters, but Trump’s candidacy has proved so controversial that many say they're withholding their support until they see his campaign mature or are exploring third-party options. Some even plan to leave blank the presidential line on their ballots. Such conflicted feelings are pervasive within Iowa’s large and politically active evangelical community, which gathers Saturday for one of its biggest annual events: the Family Leadership Summit. With Election Day four months away, born-again Christians who for decades have enthusiastically volunteered and voted for Republicans are struggling to come to terms with Trump’s political ascendancy.” “It may not be 50-50, but I think there’s a significant chunk of evangelicals who won’t vote for him,” conservative blogger Shane Vander Hart said. “They won’t vote for Hillary either, but I don’t know what they’ll do. I don’t even know what I’m doing.”


-- Bernie Sanders moved a step closer to endorsing Clinton next Tuesday in New Hampshire, John Wagner confirms.

-- Bernie said he will do “everything possible” to help elect Hillary: “We have got to do everything that we can to defeat Donald Trump and elect Hillary Clinton,” the Vermont senator said on Charlie Rose. “I don’t honestly know how we would survive four years of a Donald Trump [presidency].”

-- An adviser to the Sanders campaign emails over a list of the 12 priority amendments that they are pushing to tack onto the official Democratic Party platform during a pre-convention meeting in Orlando that starts today and runs through tomorrow. The goal is to demonstrate that he’s not a single-issue progressive:

1. Opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership, including during the lame-duck session

2. A $15 federal minimum wage

3. A national ban on fracking

4. Guarantee workers at least 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave through an insurance fund

5. Support for legislation to ban any cuts in earned pensions

6.  Criminal justice reform

7. Immigration reform

8. Bulk up the Clean Power Plan “to replace old dirty coal plants”

9. A national carbon tax

10. Rejecting the Keysyone XL Pipeline and requiring that all future pipeline projects face the same scrutiny

11. A phase out of the extraction of fossil fuels from federal lands

12. Reduce spending on nuclear weapons

-- Trying to raise money for Clinton from Americans who live overseas, Tim Kaine hosted “virtual policy conversations” in five cities. From Tom Hamburger and Matea Gold: The receptions — held simultaneously in Moscow, Paris, Rome, Warsaw and Zurich — served as the kickoff of a new Lawyers Abroad for Hillary program. ... Contributors were asked to give between $100 and $500 to participate, and to provide documentation of their U.S. passport or green card.”

-- Clinton will campaign with Kaine next Thursday in Northern Virginia. (Jenna Portnoy)

-- Housing Secretary Julian Castro and Rep. Xavier Beccera are no longer under serious contention by Clinton. (CNN)

-- HRC released a new video with testimonials from people who say they were scammed by Trump. From Abby Phillip: In the video, a former Trump vendor calls the developer a “bully” and says he was only paid for a fraction of his work designing a ballroom at Trump’s National Golf Club. “Clinton also released a new policy plan that her campaign said would enhance the legal protections for small businesses facing unpaid bills from larger companies. The proposal would also increase federal regulatory enforcement for businesses that have a pattern or practice of not paying small businesses.”

-- California finally finished processing ballots from last month's Democratic primary, officially certifying Clinton the winner. Her final margin of victory was 363,579 votes, or 7.1 percent.

-- So much for Trump's promise to compete in the Golden State during the general. He trails Clinton by 30 points in a new Field Poll and suffers “historically” poor support among independent voters.


-- “Greece was once the fast lane to Europe for refugees. Now it’s a grim waiting room,” by William Booth: “No country has been more overwhelmed than Greece and no place in Greece more than here on the island of Lesbos, which saw 600,000 war-weary people pass through in the past 18 months. No more. Now, the open turnstile toward a new life in Germany or Sweden has turned into Europe’s waiting room. Some 42,000 asylum seekers are stuck in grim camps on the Greek mainland [and] the E.U. itself struck a deal that threatens to send the migrants back to Turkey from Greece en masse. The migrants and refugees appear to have made a financial calculation: Why spend $1,000 on a smuggled voyage only to be sent back later after enduring a few squalid months in a dirty camp on Lesbos?” “I would not have come to this place to rot,” said Akash, 24. “It cost us everything we had.”

-- Maybe the happiest thing you’ll read on this very dark Friday --> “This 100-year-old public servant is from a time when Americans still believed in government,” by Colby Itkowitz: “Enclosed in their 1961 tax return forms, Americans found a letter. The short note to taxpayers was written by the new Internal Revenue Commissioner. With this personal touch, Mortimer Caplin hoped to convince Americans of the virtues of tax collection. He wrote earnestly: ‘Taxes are necessary for the kind of orderly government which will preserve America and its way of life.’ Those decades ago, The Washington Post called it ‘a touching little acknowledgement of the service that citizens perform by paying their taxes … even if it is unlikely to reconcile taxpayers either to taxes or the tax collector.’ Caplin’s approach to perhaps the most thankless, if not reviled, job in Washington is emblematic of a lifetime spent in the service of others and to meeting personal challenges. He has been a college boxer, a judge’s clerk, a World War II hero, a law professor, [JFK’s] IRS commissioner … a philanthropist, a husband and a father. He turns 100 on Monday.”

-- Great long read: One man joined a circus. Others have recommitted their lives to enjoying the little things. And some are still angry at the system that put them behind bars. The Post’s Sunday Outlook section interviews 46 former inmates granted clemency by the Obama administration, one year later: “For many of these clemency recipients, coming home from prison meant joyful reunions, meeting grandchildren for the first time, rekindling old romances. A few decades in prison made the mundane seem miraculous: taking a bath, driving a car, eating a pineapple. But those decades also broke up families. Parents died. Partners left. One recipient explained his mixed feelings of gratitude and anger. He knew he deserved to go to prison for his crime, he said, but he also knew the sentence was unjust. How grateful should you be when someone merely corrects a wrong that never should have existed in the first place? Here, we asked former prisoners to answer for themselves."


— ZIGNAL VISUAL: Clinton's email server continues to dominate the social media chatter about her. This chart shows how Clinton mentions spiked last night when the State Department announced it was reopening its probe:

Protests erupted in D.C., New York and elsewhere after the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile:

A shot from inside Trump's House meeting:

David Perdue was upbeat in his estimation:

Meanwhile, from #NeverTrump's Rick Wilson:

Is Trump actually interested in being president? This old quote might shed some light:

Trump promised he was going to release the convention speaking schedule yesterday and then didn't follow through. But the RNC convention app had fake speakers listed:

A note as Clinton campaigns:

Joyce Beatty threw up the Delta Sigma Theta hand sign with colleagues:

More celebrations for John Dingell:

Judy Chu also celebrated a birthday:

Check out this note passed to Ben Sasse:

Finally, a Throwback Thursday photo from Harry Reid:

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A post shared by Senator Harry Reid (@senatorreid) on


“Pat Buchanan Warns 'White America Has Begun To Die,” from Right Wing Watch: “For centuries, racist politicians in the U.S. have warned about the looming ‘Negro domination’ of America … In a column today, Pat Buchanan issues a similar warning about what he sees as the imminent Latino and Islamic domination of the U.S. and Europe, lamenting that white people are facing demographic collapse. ‘White America has begun to die,’ writes Buchanan, who is nonetheless hopeful that the ‘Western Man’ will ‘defend the shire, pull up the drawbridge, and man the parapets.’"



“ Ordered to Allow Users to Search for Same-Sex Matches,” from Relevant Magazine: “A judge recently ruled that Christian dating site must to allow its users to search for same-sex partners. The website, which has about 16 million users, previously only gave new users the choice between "men seeking women" or "women seeking men." In 2013, two gay men filed class action lawsuits against's parent company, Spark Networks, arguing that the website wasn't providing "full and equal accommodations" to all of their users.” A board member from the company, who is also a Texas Baptist pastor, stepped down because of the settlement.  


On the campaign trail: Clinton has no public events after canceling her appearance with Joe Biden in Scranton, Pa. Trump holds events with Christie and Rick Scott in Miami.

At the White House: Obama is in Warsaw, Poland, for business with the European Council, the European Commission, NATO and the country's president. 

On Capitol Hill: The House meets at 9 a.m.


“He speaks his mind, ain’t afraid to be straightforward,” said Josh Center, 23, a machinist from Franklin, Ohio, after Trump's rally on Wednesday night. “He’s a true American — don’t take no crap from nobody. He’s like John Wayne, like the political John Wayne. Or Chuck Norris. Yeah, he’s like Chuck Norris.” (Jenna Johnson)


-- Another day of horrific temps ahead, the Capital Weather Gang forecasts: “A few showers could be around early this morning. Otherwise, take it slow and hydrate today with high temperatures in the near and above 90 zone … Increased cloudiness may offer a slight break from that sun beating down. Scattered thunderstorms, some could be strong to severe with isolated damaging wind the main risk other than heavy rain and lightning, may erupt as we get deeper into the midday and afternoon."

-- The Nationals lost to the New York Mets 9-7.

-- Hundreds marched from the White House to the Capitol last night in protest of police shootings. Protesters were later joined on the West Lawn by a group of House lawmakers, including John Lewis. (Victoria St. Martin and Karoun Demirjian)

-- Mayor Muriel E. Bowser released body camera footage from a fatal D.C. police shooting last week, showing a confrontation between officers and a 63-year-old man holding what was later revealed to be a pellet gun. (Peter Hermann)

-- A bald eagle that was hit by a car in Maryland has been released back into the wild, after being carefully nursed back to health for months at a nearby rehabilitation center. (Dana Hedgpeth)

-- Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced a new electronic voter-registration initiative, allowing residents to apply electronically at DMV service centers and mobile offices as early as this month. The announcement comes as McAuliffe seeks eliminate lengthy processing delays that accompany paper registration applications.  (Laura Vozzella)

-- A 42-year-old woman in Northeast was charged with multiple counts of abuse after allegedly luring young boys into her apartment with ice cream and popcorn before locking them inside and forcing them to perform sexual acts. (Peter Hermann and LaVendrick Smith)

-- Maryland prosecutors said Lt. Brian W. Rice, the third of six Baltimore officers to stand trial in the death of Freddie Gray, bears responsibility because he "ignored protocol." He's the highest-ranking official charged. (Rachel Weiner and Derek Hawkins)


Watch Obama's statement on the shootings of Sterling and Castile by police:

Beyoncé held a moment of silence for police shooting victims:

eyoncé held a moment of silence at her concert in Glasgow July 7 to honor Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. (Video: Twitter/@racharmstrongx)

Here's Comey's opening statement before the House Oversight Committee:

Clinton released two new ads:

John Dingell spoke about turning 90:

And gave advice to young people: