Yesterday brought another embarrassment for failed Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

With Breanne Deppisch

THE BIG IDEA: It’s been a terrible year for personal privacy, yet the issue remains on the backburner in the presidential race.

-- Yahoo yesterday acknowledged the largest data breach in history, affecting more than 500 million user accounts. The company said the intrusion apparently began in 2014. Names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth and answers to "security questions" may all have been stolen.

Yahoo only disclosed this to customers after the press forced its hand. Vice's Motherboard blog reported a month ago that a cybercriminal known as "Peace" was trying to sell 200 million Yahoo user credentials on the “dark web.” Recode reported yesterday morning that Yahoo was preparing to confess to a breach – which seems to have prompted the company to confirm the news later in the day.

This is the latest in a long string of high-profile breaches, from Target to LinkedIn:

-- The political conversation about the data breaches has been almost exclusively about national security, not consumer privacy. Indeed, Yahoo blamed “state-sponsored” hackers. And most of the anger about all the hacked emails, whether the Democratic National Committee’s or Colin Powell’s, has been directed toward the Russians and/or WikiLeaks.

A site that experts have linked to Russian intelligence, the same one that posted Powell’s private correspondence, yesterday shared a copy of Michelle Obama’s passport, as well as sensitive Gmail messages from a White House contractor. (NBC News has more.)

Vladimir Putin should certainly not be let off the hook for meddling in our democratic process, and bipartisan pressure keeps building on the White House to retaliate against Moscow for its skullduggery. But the Yahoo revelation underscores how relatively little outrage has been directed toward the companies which hold the data that has been stolen.

-- Both presidential candidates have talked about the need to improve cybersecurity, but neither wants to be too out front on this issue:

Hillary Clinton – who the director of the FBI has called “extremely careless” about her email use – does not want to draw attention to how vulnerable private accounts are to being hacked…

And Donald Trump has an abysmal record when it comes to safeguarding the data of his customers. Trump’s hotel chain disclosed this April that its computers had been attacked, but Eric Trump refused to say just how badly. Last year, Trump’s company admitted that hackers had installed malicious software into their payment systems – potentially collecting the credit card information of anyone who stayed at one of the GOP nominee’s hotels over more than a year.

Trump, of course, also encouraged the Russians to hack Clinton’s emails during the Democratic National Convention. And Rand Paul, who made privacy and opposition to government surveillance centerpieces of his campaign, failed to catch fire during the primaries.

Mark Warner (File)


-- A federal judge issued a ruling last month that takes away one of the Federal Trade Commission’s most important tools to police how companies use consumer data. The government has appealed the decision, but the case has gotten little attention.

-- Most tech companies care more about boosting their bottom lines than protecting their customers’ privacy. Here’s a sampling of some recent headlines, for examples:

-- These tech giants aggressively lobby Congress to block legislative solutions. “Although President Obama proposed a federal law in 2015 that would give companies 30 days to notify the public about a discovered hack, lawmakers have yet to approve a single national standard,” Hayley Tsukayama, Craig Timberg and Brian Fung note in today’s newspaper. “Companies now face a messy patchwork of state disclosure laws but no federal standard for reporting about breaches, including when, how and who was affected.”

"Action from Congress to create a uniform data breach notification standard so that consumers are notified in a much more timely manner is long overdue,” Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) said in a statement last night.

Apple CEO Tim Cook and Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta leave a fundraiser on August 24 in Los Altos Hills, California. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

-- Warner can say that, in part, because he’s the richest member of the Senate. Most lawmakers don’t want to rock the boat too much because they want to keep collecting as much money as possible from the tech titans. Many Republicans and Democrats crave photo opps with Silicon Valley CEOs to make them seem hip and friendly to innovation.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, who has as much to lose as anyone if Congress ever took action to safeguard consumer protections online, has hosted fundraisers this year for both Hillary Clinton and Speaker Paul Ryan. He’s also maxed out to Republicans like Rob Portman and Democrats like Chuck Schumer.

-- The official party apparatuses also don’t want the laws to change because they want to accumulate as much information about voters as possible to assist with their targeting efforts, and they don’t want to be held accountable for failing to properly safeguard all that data.

-- The main reason Congress can get away with not passing cybersecurity and privacy legislation, at the behest of technology company’s high-priced lobbyists, is that lawmakers do not feel the heat from the American people. Americans on the whole just do not care as much about privacy as people in places like Europe.

-- By their nature, Americans are more worried about the feds keeping data on them than corporations, even though there are fewer legal and constitutional checks on big business than big government. Remember when a top executive at Uber said that the ride-sharing company could publicize the details of journalists’ personal lives in retaliation for unfavorable coverage? Uber’s senior vice president of business, Emil Michael, apologized in 2014 after BuzzFeed reported that, during a dinner with reporters, he floated the idea of spending “a million dollars” to hire “four top opposition researchers and four journalists” to “help Uber fight back against the press.” “Nobody would know it was us,” Michael said according to Buzzfeed. He still works at the company today. Think about that next time you order an Uber.

(Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg)

-- But, but, but: Some new polling numbers show how a smart politician who wants to run as a populist in 2020 could really capitalize on consumer concerns about companies like Yahoo. Lee Rainie, the director of internet and technology research for the Pew Research Center, published a report this week summarizing available public opinion data. Five nuggets:

  • 68% of internet users believe current laws are not good enough in protecting people’s privacy online; and 64% believe the government should do more to regulate advertisers. Most expect at least some limits on retention policies by data collections. And a majority (64%) support more regulation of advertisers and the way they handle personal information.”
  • "86% of internet users have taken steps online to remove or mask their digital footprints, but many say they would like to do more or are unaware of tools they could use."
  • Three-quarters of Americans say it is “very important” to them that they be in control of who can get information about them, and 65% say it is “very important” to them to control what information is collected about them.
  • “While half of those surveyed said they felt confident they understood how their information would be used, 47% said they were not, and many of these people felt confused, discouraged or impatient when trying to make decisions about sharing their personal information with companies.”
  • 91% of adults agree or strongly agree that consumers have lost control of how personal information is collected and used by companies. … Only 9% say they feel they have ‘a lot’ of control over how much information is collected about them and how it is used.”

-- The numbers would probably be higher if people truly understood just how much data companies keep on them. Some of the fastest growing businesses in the United States are focused on amassing and selling your personal information. As Shailene Woodley, who plays Edward Snowden’s girlfriend in Oliver Stone’s new biopic, put it last week, “Privacy isn’t a human right anymore—it’s a privilege.”

Welcome to The Daily 202, PowerPost's morning newsletter.
With contributions from Elise Viebeck (@eliseviebeck) and an assist from pollster Scott Clement.

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Tulsa District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler, flanked by sheriff's deputies, before his news conference last night. (Ian Maule/Tulsa World via AP)


-- Tulsa prosecutors filed first-degree manslaughter charges against Betty Shelby, the white officer who fatally shot unarmed black man Terence Crutcher. An attorney for Shelby said Crutcher was “not following police commands,” and that Shelby opened fire when Crutcher began to reach into his SUV window. Shelby thought Crutcher was “behaving like someone under the possible influence” of PCP, he added. An attorney for Crutcher’s family immediately pushed back on the officer’s account, saying the car window was rolled up and reports linking him to drugs were attempts to “intellectually justify” the shooting. Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin said she hopes the decision to prosecute “provides some peace” to the Crutcher family, urging patience as the case works its way through the justice system. (Katie Zezima and Peter Holley)

-- Charlotte protests stretched on for the third night in a row, with demonstrators carrying on even after the mayor issued a midnight curfew across the city. After demonstrators chanted, “What curfew? What curfew?” a police captain said the protests could continue as long they remained peaceful.

  • The rioter who got shot Wednesday night died.
  • At least 44 have been arrested in the clashes so far.

Riot police trying to clear a freeway knocked down a Washington Post video journalist:

-- Fueling the anger was news that video footage of Keith Lamont Scott's death will not be made public AND that the video does not fully confirm the account given by officers. Charlotte Police Chief Kerr Putney said he has “no plans” to release body camera footage of the encounter, and he said it does not give “absolute definitive visual evidence that would confirm that a person is pointing a gun." He added that "other evidence" has corroborated officers' accounts. (Cleve R. Wootson Jr., Mark Berman and Lindsey Bever)

  • Scott's relatives, who were shown some footage, say they now have “more questions than answers.”
  • The New York Times Editorial Board calls on Charlotte to release the footage, accusing the police department of “stonewalling."
Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-N.C.) on Capitol Hill (Andrew Harnik/AP)

-- Four Republicans made tone deaf and insensitive comments:

1. Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-N.C.) said the Charlotte protesters “hate white people”: "The grievance in their mind is the animus, the anger," he said in a BBC interview. "They hate white people, because white people are successful and they're not."

2. A Trump campaign county chair in Ohio resigned after asserting that there was “no racism” in the country before Barack Obama came along. "If you’re black and you haven’t been successful in the last 50 years, it’s your own fault,” Kathy Miller told The Guardian. “You’ve had every opportunity, it was given to you." She called the Black Lives Matter movement a “stupid waste of time.”

3. Mike Pence claimed that it is divisive to discuss "institutional racism and institutional bias” in the wake of the fatal shootings. "Police officers are human beings," the Indiana governor said in Colorado. "And in difficult and life-threatening situations, mistakes are made and people have to be held to strict account, but we both believe that it's important that we have a president who, as the chief law enforcement officer of the United States, stands behind the men and women who serve in law enforcement. … We ought to set aside this talk, this talk about institutional racism and institutional bias.” He called it the "rhetoric of division." (Politico)

4. USA Today suspended conservative columnist Glenn Reynolds for a month after he called for motorists to drive over protesters who were blocking a Charlotte highway. “Run them down,” he tweeted. He has since issued an apology. (Knoxville News-Sentinel)

Donald Trump takes the stage next to a statue of Rocky during a rally last night at the Sun Center Studios in Aston, Pennsylvania. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

-- Trump himself denounced the protesters, saying violent disruptions disproportionately hurt African Americans “who live in these communities where the crime is so rampant.” “Drugs are a very, very big factor in what you’re watching on television at night,” he said during a Philadelphia rally. (Jose A. DelReal and Sean Sullivan)

-- Conventional wisdom from the pundit class holds that the protests in Charlotte will help Trump in North Carolina. From Bloomberg’s Margaret Newkirk: “The politics of race are newly prominent in the former mill state that came to exemplify the so-called New South. Both Democrats and Republicans in the state said three nights of violence were unlikely to make a difference in elections still more than a month away, but continued violence is a different story. ‘That just feeds into Trump’s message,’ said Public Policy Polling’s Tom Jensen (a Democrat). ‘If it becomes a national story for a protracted period of time it could help Trump increase his advantage with white voters.’”

-- Under fire, Trump walked back his support for "stop and frisk" policies. In a "Fox and Friends" interview, the Republican nominee said he is only advocating for the controversial approach to policing in Chicago. “I was really referring to Chicago with stop-and-frisk,” Trump said, adding that he thinks the city “needs it" because of the surge in murders.

-- Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) said Trump's proposal would infringe on constitutional rights. "The reality of it is that you don't need to violate the Constitution to keep communities safe," the African American lawmaker told CNN's Jake Tapper.

-- Members of the Congressional Black Caucus demanded the Justice Department “aggressively” ramp up its investigations of police shootings. “We will not continue to ask our constituents to be patient without any hope for change,” members wrote in an open letter. “These killings cannot continue to go unaddressed or ignored by our government.” (Karoun Demirjian)

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara during a news conference yesterday (Brendan McDermid/Reuters)

-- Prosecutors in the office of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara issued a subpoena for Anthony Weiner's cellphone and other records, CNN’s Evan Perez reports. “The FBI and the New York Police Department have opened preliminary investigations of allegations that the former New York Democratic congressman exchanged sexually explicit text messages with a purportedly underage girl. The online sexting relationship allegedly went on for months between Weiner and a girl claiming to be just 15. … Weiner neither confirmed or denied sending the texts. … Huma Abedin, one of Clinton's closest aides, announced last month that she was separating from Weiner.” Trump's campaign responded to the news by calling on Clinton to return a pair of campaign donations from the disgraced former congressman, Sean Sullivan reports.

Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell and Nancy Pelosi bow their heads in prayer during the invocation for a ceremony to dedicate a statue of Thomas Edison in Statuary Hall at the Capitol on Wednesday. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

-- No budget deal, yet: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell went ahead yesterday and filed the Senate GOP version of a stopgap spending bill to keep open the government (the deadline is Sept. 30). The resolution would fund the government through Dec. 9, provide $1 million to combat the Zika virus and $37 million to fight opioid addiction. The sticking point remains money that Democrats want for the water crisis in Flint, Mich., though the measure does contain $500 million for recent flooding in Louisiana. Democrats also object to language preventing the Securities and Exchange Commission from requiring companies to disclose their political spending. Lawmakers will be back next week to try and resolve the impasse. (Kelsey Snell has the latest.)

A destroyed ambulance in Aleppo (Syrian Civil Defense White Helmets via AP)


  1. The Syrian government launched an offensive to recapture Aleppo, blatantly defying a U.S.-Russian ceasefire as Bashar Assad's regime seeks to recover rebel-held areas of the city. The move makes clear that Syria’s government has no intention of complying with ceasefire requests from the international community. (Liz Sly)
  2. Central American migrants entering the U.S. have drastically spiked this year, according to U.S. Border Patrol data, calling into question the Obama administration’s seriousness about stopping a wave of illegal immigration. (David Nakamura)
  3. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused the U.S. of violating its commitments under the nuclear deal, delaying licenses for legitimate transactions and warning banks they could still run afoul of U.S. sanctions. (Carol Morello)
  4. House Republicans moved a bill to stop future cash payments to Iran. (Karoun Demirjian)
  5. Benjamin Netanyahu invited Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to address Israel’s parliament. (AP)
  6. Britain has seen a sustained spike in hate crimes since the “Brexit” vote in July, prompting fears that xenophobia unleashed during the summer campaign have created a new normal across the country. Officials fear anti-immigrant violence will worsen during a years-long negotiation process with the European Union. (Griff Witte)
  7. Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf resigned from his advisory role with the Federal Reserve, departing from the 12-person banking team as he seeks to recover his brand from a high-profile sham account scandal. (Jonnelle Marte)
  8. A Harrier jet went down off the coast of Japan, the third crash in two months for the Marine Corps. The pilot ejected and was recovered by an Air Force rescue crew. (Thomas Gibbons-Neff)
  9. Jason Chaffetz said 18 Yosemite National Park employees have come forward with allegations of sexual harassment, slamming Park Service officials for allowing a “horrific” environment as feds continue to probe the agency. (Lisa Rein)
  10. Preparing for a possible Indian attack, Pakistani fighter jets touched down on a major highway and temporarily suspended commercial aircraft in a display of military readiness. (Pamela Constable and Shaiq Hussain)
  11. A NASA astronaut said she plans to cast her vote for president from the International Space Station, after her expected homecoming was delayed by at least a month. Her absentee ballot will be the first in history to be listed with an address of "low-Earth orbit." (AP)
  12. Scientists are alarmed by the rise of new, football-sized goldfish that have spawned in streams across the globe. The once-tame aquarium pets are wreaking havoc on ecosystems. (New York Times)
  13. Tesla sued Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R), challenging a state law prohibiting automakers from selling vehicles directly to customers. The car company is seeking a declaratory judgment, dinging the 2014 measure as “anti-Tesla.” (AP)
  14. A 16-year-old girl in China starved her mother to death in a furious rage after escaping from a months-long stay at “an Internet boot camp.” Such treatment centers have spiked across the country, but are often hubs for physical punishment and abuse. (Simon Denyer and Gu Jinglu)
  15. Facebook announced it has overestimated a key video metric for two years, falsely inflating average time users spend viewing footage on its site by 60 to 80 percent. The stunning disclosure stoked outrage among big ad buyers and media companies alike, who use the information to influence critical decisions. (WSJ)
Tim Kaine discusses Doug Wilder's comments about the black vote with Katie Couric. (Yahoo News)

-- Tim Kaine responds to yesterday’s Daily 202Katie Couric asked the Virginia senator during an interview in Reno for Yahoo News about Doug Wilder’s comments that the Clinton campaign is taking the black vote for granted. “Yeah, I know Doug Wilder well,” Kaine replied, before offering a point-by-point rebuttal:

“Let's start with respect. I was a civil rights lawyer battling for 17 years to advance African American's rights to housing, and Hillary worked for the Legal Defense Fund to do the same thing in education in the Juvenile Justice Reform. Donald Trump perpetrated a bigoted lie for years that President Obama wasn't a U.S. citizen.”

“Now, let's talk about plans. In the heart of our plan is an economic plan in the first 100 days of our administration that expands educational opportunity, and that invests in communities, including in hard-hit communities (our inner cities and rural America) to grow jobs and to grow salaries. And especially to help create more opportunity for people to get an education. It's about respect, it's about growing the economy, it's about educational equity and opportunity, and these criminal justice reform issues. This is what we're going do, and our lives suggest that we've done it. When I was suing companies for violating the Fair Housing laws, Donald Trump was getting sued for violating the Fair Housing laws.”  Watch Katie’s full interview here.

-- A new Clinton ad shows girls looking in the mirror as footage of Trump insulting women plays in the background. "I'd look her right in that fat ugly face of hers," Trump says in the ad, a comment he made about Rosie O'Donnell in 2006. "She is a slob." The ad features Trump saying, "A person who is flat chested is very hard to be a 10," about actress Nicollette Sheridan, and, "Does she have a good body, no? Does she have a fat (expletive)? Absolutely" about Kim Kardashian in 2013.

Vladimir Putin, in his Kremlin office yesterday, met with the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service Mikhail Fradkov and the Speaker of Parliament Sergei Naryshkin. Putin put Fradkov atop the board of directors of the Russian railway system and will now install Naryshkin as his replacement at the intelligence service. (Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)


-- Unashamed and unbowed, The Donald keeps flirting with and expressing admiration for strong men. He praised Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi as a “fantastic guy” who “really took control,” touting his chemistry with the autocratic leader during a Fox News interview. “I thought it was very productive. He’s a fantastic guy,” Trump said of his meeting with al-Sisi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. “We met for a long time, actually. There was a good chemistry there. … There was a good feeling between us.” For his party, al-Sisi (who has done a lot of horrible things to his people) praised Trump and said he would make a “strong leader.” (Politico)

-- Omarosa, the former “Apprentice” star who is the director of African American outreach on Trump's campaign, told PBS that he was inspired to run because Obama mocked him. Then she actually said this: Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Trump. It’s everyone who’s ever doubted Donald, who ever disagreed, who ever challenged him. It is the ultimate revenge to become the most powerful man in the universe.” (Trailer here.)

-- The top Democrats on the Senate and House Intelligence Committees accused Russia of “making a serious and concerted effort to influence the U.S. election,” issuing a joint statement as lawmakers ramp up pressure on the Obama administration to more aggressively confront Moscow. (Greg Miller)

-- Former Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev says he is “PANICKY” because of Trump’s autocratic ways and compares him to Putin. “When Putin came to power in 2000, nobody knew for sure his views on economic, social or foreign policy issues beyond vague promises to ‘get Russia off its knees’ (make Russia great again), impose law and order and crush terrorism. The law and order turned into the harassment of critical journalists, control of the media and defamation of opponents, while the corruption and terrorism went on. The complacency of the Duma opened the way for restrictive legislation … That’s the role model the 2016 Republican presidential contender followed. I know that many Americans would be offended by such a comparison. “… I hope — pray, in fact — that I’m being unnecessarily panicky, Kozyrev concludes. “But where is my analysis wrong?”

-- A list of 75 retired senior diplomats signed a new letter opposing Trump. Every signatory -- including ambassadors and top State Department officials from both Republican and Democratic administrations -- said they plan to vote for Clinton. Many have never publicly endorsed a candidate for president before, saying they have decided to weigh in "because the stakes in this election are so high." (Karen DeYoung)

-- Former CIA acting director Michael Morell said Trump is “not acting like a patriot,” invoking Trump’s ties to Russia. "The definition of a patriot is someone who puts his nation above everything else,” he said on a conference call for reporters. “In that regard, Donald Trump is not a patriot." The comments come as the Clinton campaign seeks to keep talk of Trump's unknown business ties to Russia and his praise for Putin in the news, Abby Phillip reports. Also on the call was former secretary of state Madeleine Albright, who described Trump a "gift to Putin." "I am worried that [Trump], were he to win, would be the first president to have personal interests that could interfere with our country’s interest," Albright said. "Putin could not have dreamed up a better candidate than Donald Trump." 

Ron Klain was formerly Ebola Czar. Now he's helping with debate prep. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)


-- Clinton’s prep sessions feel more like moot courts than mock debates, according to Politico’s Annie Karni and Glenn Thrush: Anita Dunn and Ron Klain are overseeing an orderly and intensely secretive process. Clinton’s inner circle is worried that victory will come down to something like tone, which she has always struggled with, vacillating between cold and severe to thoughtful and wry. “But the traditional, substantive sessions now underway are key to settling the candidate’s head, longtime aides said. ‘The prep matters because it gives her the confidence to know she is armed,’ said one longtime Clinton ally. ‘She will feel more comfortable if she's prepared the way she likes to prepare.’”

  • Several Democrats who have spoken to the participants (say) that the main person playing the role of interlocutor – up until this weekend anyway, where there will be a real Trump stand-in – was campaign chairman John Podesta, a sharp-tongued veteran operator known less for bluster than behind-the-curtain scheme-spinning. The wiry Podesta is quick on his feet, and is famous for a lashing tongue when angry. The buttoned-down, courtly Klain has also stood in parrying questions with Clinton … but both men have been less concerned with imitating Trump than preparing Clinton for the substance of the attacks, two keen attorneys framing Clinton’s reactions in the precise, disciplined language their lawyerly candidate thrives on.”
  • “Insiders said Clinton's debate group has tried to frame every minute on the stage as a referendum on the issue of trust … Klain and Dunn, who report directly to Jake Sullivan, not only offer an overarching strategy, but act as speechwriters -- line-writers, really -- paring down language and crafting practiced lines.”

-- Trump's advisers are urging him to keep his cool, preparing for the likelihood that Clinton will attempt to provoke him with questions about his businesses, wealth and comments about minorities. From AP’s Julie Pace: “[Newt] Gingrich is part of a rotating cast of politicians and policy experts traveling with Trump on his private plane for mid-flight debate preparations.” Others include retired Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn and economist Peter Navarro. Chris Christie has been helping on issues such as the federal government's relationship with the states. Trump has eschewed the kind of mock debate setups candidates traditionally use to get ready for the high-pressure events … but aides say he is studying written briefing material on domestic and international issues.”

-- Fellow billionaire Mark Cuban has been being given a front-row seat by the Clinton campaign in hopes that he can get in Trump’s head during the debate. "He has the best seat we have access to," a campaign aide confirmed. (CNN)

-- During a focus group, a group of undecided voters in Tampa were asked what they want to see during the debate. “If this debate becomes a circus, it will please each base, but it will alienate undecided voters who are sick and tired of the negativity,” Park Street Strategies CEO Chris Kofinis (a Democrat) says in an email to the 202 about his findings. “They want to hear substance, specifics, and a positive message about where Clinton or Trump will lead this country.” Other highlights from Florida:

  • They want candidates to speak to their own priorities. As one respondent commented, “Don’t tell me what he’s done or she’s done. Tell me what you’ve done.”
  • They want to see Clinton focus on her vision for the future, not “reciting a résumé of past accomplishments they already know about.”
  • The group agreed that Trump must remain composed – while providing more credible details about his plans – if he is going to win their support. “For many of these undecided voters, the days of providing empty answers by citing his unrelated business experience, or avoiding the questions entirely, are over. As one voter said, ‘It comes down to experience,’ and others ‘could care less’ about the businesses he built when he discusses this in lieu of policy,” Chris said in his email.

-- Mark your calendars: The morning after the debate, I will talk one-on-one with Tom Vilsack for the latest installment of The Daily 202 Live. The former Iowa governor – who Hillary Clinton considered as a potential running mate – will give his take on the debate, including how the candidates are resonating with rural voters. He will also share thoughts about how Democrats can make gains in rural Republican strongholds and discuss the pressing issues facing the next administration. The event will take place at The Post's Live Center (1301 K Street NW) from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. (Details here. Register here.)


  • McClatchy-Marist has Clinton up 7 points nationally (48-41). The Democratic nominee leads on both experience and temperament, with 57 percent of voters saying she possesses the “know-how” to do the job, and 50 percent saying she has the advantage on temperament.
  • Quinnipiac University has Trump up 7 points in both Iowa (44-37) and Georgia (47-40). Clinton leads by just 2 points in Colorado (44-42) and 6 points in Virginia (45-39). 
  • Colorado Mesa University/Rocky Mountain News puts Clinton up 9 points in Colorado.
  • Suffolk University/USA Today finds Florida moving away from Clinton. She's down just 1 point in the Sunshine State (45-44), which is within the margin of error, but she was up 4 points a month ago.
  • Siena College and the Upshot give Clinton a 2-point lead in North Carolina (45-43). 

-- A Pew study finds that Clinton is not making significant headway among voters with disabilities. She leads Trump 47 percent to 40 percent among disabled voters – just two points higher than her lead among voters without a disability. Voters with disabilities also identified as Democrats and Republicans in about the same percentages as the public as a whole. She's been reaching out to this group all week. (John Wagner)


Trump speaks to energy executives in Pittsburgh. (Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)

-- Trump introduced a new college affordability plan, seizing upon one of Clinton’s signature issues. Speaking in Pennsylvania, Trump called on universities to use their tax-free "multibillion-dollar endowments" to help students with tuition and debt. “Instead these universities use the money to pay their administrators, to put donors names on their buildings, or just store the money, keep it and invest it,” he charged. “In fact, many universities spend more on private-equity fund managers than on tuition programs. But they should be using the money on students … That's what it's supposed to be for.” Trump, naturally, offered few additional specifics, Jose A. DelReal and John Wagner note.

-- Trump has been dark in several battlegrounds this week, Politico’s Steven Shepard notes: “Trump’s ads last ran nearly a week ago in four battleground states: Florida, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Since then, the GOP presidential nominee has ceded the airwaves to Clinton — and is only poised to launch a limited, less-targeted ad campaign in the days before next week’s debate. While his campaign announced a new ad on Tuesday, it’s only going to run on national cable news stations and during two Sunday morning public-affairs shows.”

-- The campaign has now paid out more than $8.2 million to Trump family businesses, Politico’s Kenneth P. Vogel and Isaac Arnsdorf tabulate: “The campaign has paid his various businesses for services including rent for his campaign offices ($1.3 million), food and facilities for events and meetings ($544,000) and payroll for Trump corporate staffers ($333,000) who helped with everything from his traveling security to his wife’s convention speech. In all, the Trump campaign’s payments to Trump-owned businesses account for about 7 percent of its $119 million spending total.”

Trump seeking contestants for "The Apprentice" in Hollywood. (AP/Ric Francis)

-- “Trump once said TV ruined politics. Then it made him a star,” by Drew Harwell and Mary Jordan: “In 1980, in one of his first big TV interviews, [Trump] was asked whether television was ruining politics. ‘It’s hurt the process very much,’ Trump told NBC’s Rona Barrett. But in the years since Trump lamented the negative effect of TV, he has embraced it as no other presidential candidate in history ... He has a practiced understanding of what grabs TV viewers: saying or doing the unexpected, speaking in short sound bites, repeating himself, not appearing scripted, being blunt and over-the-top."

Clinton arrives back home after a day of campaigning and fundraising in Florida. (Melina Mara/The Washington Post)


-- Hillary and Bill Clinton just purchased their third house -- spending seven figures to scoop up a property next door to their current residence in Chappaqua, N.Y. The house was purchased in August for $1,160,000, Anne Gearan and Alice Crites report. The campaign has not responded on why the couple purchased the second house, or what they plan to do with the property.

-- BuzzFeed, “How A Decision In May Changed The General Election,” by Ruby Cramer: Last summer, when Trump began his rise to the nomination, Clinton responded by pointing a finger squarely and firmly at the Republican Party. So when Trump secured the Republican nomination, DNC officials expected to hear more of the same. Instead, DNC emails reveal Clinton took a vastly different approach – blowing up the playbook to argue Trump is even more extreme than rank-and-file Republican lawmakers. In some two dozen exchanges, now-public DNC emails reveal a running tension over the campaign’s decision to “disaggregate” Trump from the Republican Party – and how it might affect down-ballot Republicans. One year later, Clinton has made the race almost exclusively about Trump, Cramer writes, “leaving the rest of the Democratic Party to adjust to a general election that has little to do with traditional partisan policy or politics. The strategic shift … fundamentally upended the way Democrats talk about Republicans."

-- New York Times, “Inside Clinton’s Outrage Machine, Allies Push the Buttons,” by Jason Horowitz: “Just before 9:30 p.m. on Sept. 13, the first Twitter post appeared, directing users to an obscure article about a remark [Trump] had made last year that 50 percent of the country did not want to work. By the end of the week, the hashtag #Trump50percent had appeared in Twitter timelines more than 30,000 times. At first glance, the Clintonian grass roots seemed to have organically sprouted in anger. But closer inspection yielded traces of Miracle-Gro that led to the sixth floor of a building in the Flatiron neighborhood of Manhattan. There, surrounded by start-up tech companies, ‘Star Wars’ posters and flat-screen televisions fixed on cable news, Peter Daou sat with his team at a long wooden table last week, pushing the buttons that activate Mrs. Clinton’s outrage machine. In the sprawling Clinton body politic, Shareblue is the finger that wags at the mainstream news media. It is a minor appendage, but in an increasingly close race for the presidency, it plays its part."

-- Politico, “When America Met Hillary,” by Michael Kruse: In 1992, after Gennifer Flowers spoke out about how she had been Bill Clinton’s mistress for 12 years, it was up to his wife to fix it. In an appearance on 60 Minutes, Hillary responded fiercely to the claims of infidelity. “You know, I’m not sitting here, some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette,’” she said. “’I’m sitting here because I love him, and I respect him, and I honor what he’s been through and what we’ve been through together. And you know, if that’s not enough for people, then heck—don’t vote for him.This was America’s introduction to Hillary Clinton, and it worked—for her husband. Most agree he would not have become president without it. For her, however, it came at a steep cost. In 10 minutes of television, she projected a set of complicated, even conflicting images … triggering the set of skeptical, antagonistic feelings that have defined her with a share of the American public ever since.”

Guadalupe Arreola, civil rights activist Dolores Huerta and Nevada Democratic Senate candidate Catherine Cortez Masto in Las Vegas last week. (Dalton Bennett/The Washington Post)


-- “Hispanics are gaining at the ballot box, but few are actually on the ballot,” by Ed O'Keefe in Las Vegas: "Two of Nevada’s Democratic congressional candidates sat listening as small-business owners vented about high taxes and business regulations. Unlike most such conversations in U.S. politics, this one was conducted in Spanglish. The meeting was hosted by Catherine Cortez Masto ... who would be the first female Hispanic ever elected to the U.S. Senate, and House candidate Ruben Kihuen, a Mexican immigrant who would be the state’s first Latino congressman. In a year when political parties and interest groups are spending millions of dollars to mobilize Latino voters ... they are a rare sight. If Latinos show up to vote this fall, most of them probably won’t find one of their own on the ballot. Hispanics comprise roughly 17 percent of the U.S. population, but just 2 percent of the country’s political officeholders.

-- As early voting begins in Virginia, elections officials are warning voters to ignore “misleading” letters about their registration status. From Laura Vozzella: “Earlier this week, state elections officials warned that some voters may have received mailings that suggested their voter registration status was in question. 'Letters sent by these organizations have reportedly been addressed to individuals who were already properly registered, are not qualified to register at the mailing address used, or are deceased,' said state election commissioner Edgardo Cortés. The letters include our street address and contact information, he said, but warned they did not come from the Department and 'are not official election mail.'"

-- “Appeals court to hear challenge to Virginia’s voter-identification law,” by Ann E. Marimow: “The shadow of North Carolina’s strict voting rules hung over a federal court hearing Thursday about a Virginia law where lawyers were repeatedly asked whether the state’s requirements are just as bad. The case involving Virginia’s voter-identification law comes two months after judges on the same appeals court threw out North Carolina’s far-reaching voting restrictions, finding North Carolina legislators had intentionally made it more difficult for minorities to cast ballots. At the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit on Thursday, lawyers in the Virginia case quickly found themselves in the middle of a comparison to North Carolina. ... Judges have repeatedly sided with opponents of new requirements in recent months, overturning or weakening restrictive voting laws."

-- CNN, “Why two congressional districts could be key to this election,” by Tal Kopan: It's possible that Trump could pick up an electoral vote from Maine even while losing the state, and Clinton could get one from Nebraska even as she loses the state. These are the only two states that don't have a winner-take-all system. 


Sad reflection of the week's news:

Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-N.C.) tried to clarify his comment that the Charlotte protesters "hate white people" with a series of tweets:

Tim Huelskamp got lots of negative attention on Twitter for his response to this Obama quote:

Many noted that he lost his reelection: 

Obama's Twitter account celebrated the first day of fall:

So did Senate Republicans:

Here's a throwback campaign photo:

TV preacher James David Manning withdrew his support for Trump:

Donald Trump Jr. is getting negative attention for pushing this story:

Is Mark Ruffalo going to break his promise regarding the election?

Tom Perez hung out with David Ortiz:

Here's how Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) responded after a Twitter user accused him of being gay and in the closet:

Then, when someone asked if he'll run for president in 2024:

Chuck Schumer celebrated his anniversary:

Yet another great D.C. sunset:


“Cops Pepper-Spray Girl Who Fell Off Bike,” from the Daily Beast: “When a teenage girl riding her bike collided with a car, cops didn’t simply take her to the hospital but instead handcuffed her, pepper sprayed her, and threw her in the back of their squad car. …Cell phone footage shows the 15-year-old girl from Hagerstown, Maryland being loaded into a police car Sunday. At this point the girl … ask to speak with ‘Zack,’ an officer she says is black, unlike her arresting officers who are white. Then, while the girl is handcuffed in the back of the car, police are seen firing pepper spray at her through the window. ‘I can’t breathe!’ the girl screams. Body camera footage shows the girl being handcuffed and pushed against a brick wall. 'You let that badge go to your head,' one bystander told the officer."



“Email shows federal immigration bosses in OT push to swear in new citizens 'due to election,’” from Fox News: “An internal Obama administration email shows immigration officials may be literally working overtime to swear in as many new ‘citizen voters’ as possible before the Nov. 8 presidential election …The email, from a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services field office chief and part of a chain of correspondence within the agency, urges the unnamed recipient to swear in as many citizens as possible ‘due to the election year.’” …Sens. Ron Johnson and Charles Grassley said in a Wednesday letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, that it appears the agency is trying to swear in new citizens as the election approaches.


On the campaign trail: Tim Kaine campaigns in Houston.

At the White House: Obama meets with Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and attends a reception for the opening of the new Smithsonian museum. Vice President Biden attends meetings with representatives from the Northern Triangle of Central America and President Salvador Sanchez President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador, President Jimmy Morales of Guatemala, and President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras. Later, Biden speaks at the closing session of the meeting with Northern Triangle Presidents.

On Capitol Hill: The Senate is out until Monday.

New for the debate: The Fix’s Aaron Blake will text people his analysis of the debates, including must-see moments. Sign up here or text “DEBATES” to 97678.


“He’s up in years.” – Donald Rumsfeld, asked on MSNBC about George H.W. Bush voting for Clinton


-- TGIF! The Capital Weather Gang says to expect a heat spike this afternoon: “Some early clouds are possible but we should see increased sunshine as the day wears on. Temperatures respond to the sunshine by afternoon, rising into the mid-80s to around 90 (almost 15 degrees above average!). A saving grace is dew points in the 60s, staying just shy (we hope) of the unpleasant threshold.”

-- A Republican state legislator in Virginia was charged with repeated assault of two family members. Officials said Suffolk lawmaker Del. Richard Morris was arrested and charged on multiple counts of assault and battery. (Laura Vozzella)

-- Maryland health officials announced a 68 percent spike in opioid-related deaths during the first half of 2016, marking the state’s most drastic jump in the last six years. (Josh Hicks)

-- The D.C. Council is considering legislation that would ban businesses from asking prospective employees about their salary history before making job offers. Advocates have said the practice “exacerbates a cycle of unequal wages” for women. (Fenit Nirappil)

-- Soon-to-be free agent Wilson Ramos declined a three-year contract with the Nationals, turning down a nearly $30 million deal as he searches for a higher bidder this winter. (Jorge Castillo)


Have you seen the Dalai Lama's Trump impression? You have to watch this:

Obama joked about Morgan Freeman playing the role of president:

Mel Brooks pretended to pants Obama:

In case you missed it in yesterday's 202, Clinton made an appearance on "Between Two Ferns":

Some flashbacks to other memorable comedic moments with HRC:

Trump Jr. said he was not comparing refugees to Skittles in this tweet (click to watch):

In this video, Jewish grandparents threaten to haunt their grandchildren if Trump wins the White House:

Seth Meyers took a closer look at Trump's foundation:

These gifs of old D.C. are awesome -- check them out:

This is an adorable video of a tiny Titans fan meeting players before a game (click to watch):