Friday, July 19, 2019


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Our Traditional Wide World of News Friday Quiz

1. The Democratic Party’s biggest donors and bundlers believe

a. Any of their party’s candidates can beat Donald Trump.

b. The candidate they are supporting can beat Donald Trump.

c. Only Joe Biden can beat Donald Trump.

d. The liberal positions the party has taken on immigration, health care, reparations, prisoner voting rights, and abortion mean that none of their candidates can beat Donald Trump.

2. The biggest 2020 worry of congressional Republicans who have not fully swallowed the Trump Kool-Aid is

a. The president will not talk enough about the economy and judges, hurting candidates up and down the ticket.

b. Suburban women, sick of the non-stop tweeting, chaos, and bigotry, will abandon the party in droves, hurting candidates up and down the ticket.

c. The Trump-Pence campaign and the RNC will vacuum up all the money, leaving only crumbs for other Republican candidates.

d. The president’s popular vote ceiling will turn out to be 43%, turning Red states into Blue and making the 2018 tsunami look like the splashes in a kiddie pool.

3. The spouse who is having the biggest impact on the Democratic nomination battle is

a. Jane Sanders.

b. Jill Biden.

c. Douglass Emhoff.

d. Chasten Buttigieg.

4. The next big Trump controversy will be

a. Judy Shelton’s nomination to the Fed.

b. A senior White House official caught red-handed dishing to the New York Times about the president.

c. The president siding with House Republicans over Mitch McConnell on the budget.

d. Something to do with a family member of someone who serves in the White House.

5. Bob Mueller’s congressional testimony will

a. Lead scores of additional House Democrats to call for impeachment.

b. Cause a handful of Senate Republicans to look anew at the evidence against the president.

c. Frustrate Hill Democrats, who will wonder why they bothered.

d. Make an Alan Greenspan speech look like “Fantasia” when viewed on mushrooms.

6. Friday’s best New York Post headline is

a. Woman confuses sculpture of Spider-Man hands for devil horns.

b. Howard Stern wants OJ Simpson kicked off Twitter.

c. Miley Cyrus is back to twerk.

d. Dave Chappelle wants people to put their phones away.

7. The New York Times columnist who most passionately wants Donald Trump to lose re-election is

a. Tom Friedman.

b. David Brooks.

c. Bret Stephens.

d. Ross Douthat.

8. The best headline word or words to describe what the president said Thursday regarding the Wednesday North Carolina chant was

a. “Disavows.” (New York Times and AP)

b. “Disagrees.” (Washington Post and Wall Street Journal)

c. “Claims to disavow.” (CNN)

d. “Blames supporters.” (USA Today)

9. The most likely outcome of the Big Casino budget and debt ceiling talks is

a. A two-year deal passed by both chambers before the currently scheduled recess begins.

b. A two-year deal passed by both chambers after recess is pushed back.

c. A kick-the-can-down-the-road deal through the early fall.

d. A kick-the-can-down-the-road deal through Christmas.

10.  Who said this: “Frankly, I think there is a conspiracy among Ocasio-Cortez, the media, and the Republican Party to make her look much more influential than she is.”

a. Nancy Pelosi.

b. Sean Hannity.

c. Barney Frank.

d. Rahm Emanuel.

For the answers, you have four options

a. Direct message @JakeSherman on Twitter.

b. Email me your guesses.

c. Wait until Monday’s episode of Wide World of News.

d. Ask Tammy Baldwin or Tom Cole.


In other news:

*There is shockingly little news coverage of the status of the Big Casino budget and debt ceiling talks.

My take: The mood music from Mnuchin/Pelosi/Schumer/Senate Republicans is there will be a deal.  The mood music from the White House/House Republicans is a deal is still far away.  Do I need to point out how crazy cuckoo it is that in the Era of Trump we are on the cusp of a potential government shutdown and default of the full faith and credit of these United States and the media can barely be bothered to cover it? In a normal presidency, this would be the lead story (even though it is scarcely click bait, so don’t blame Trump for everything in this case).

Bloomberg is one of a few outlets to offer the state of play:

“The White House late Thursday sent House Speaker Nancy Pelosi a proposed list of spending cuts to give her options for a budget agreement that she wants to include in a deal to raise the debt ceiling….”

As we say in Baltimore and San Francisco, when we are quoting James A. Baker 3d: “Nothing is decided until everything is decided.”

So: we wait.


*CNN debate lineups:

July 30

Sanders, Warren, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Bullock, Delaney, Hickenlooper, Ryan, and Williamson.

My take: Good luck to the moderators trying to get pals Sanders and Warren to go after each other.  Klobuchar has a chance for enough time to build on her strong-but-mostly-overlooked first debate perf – especially if she is willing to fearlessly take the moderate lane against the two frontrunners.

July 31

Biden, Harris, Booker, Castro, Yang, Bennet, de Blasio, Gabbard, Gillibrand, and Inslee.

My take: Surely, Biden will come armed with more opposition research on Harris than last time; he had a little he teased out in the first debate. Surely, there exists the potential for Biden’s record on criminal justice and trade to become pile-on issues. 

*House Democrats are trying to keep the peace and/but impeachment battle promises more conflict.

My take: What your grandparents called a “shot…chaser,” since both stories are from Politico. We are still waiting for a readout on the planned Pelsoi-AOC meeting, just one sliver in the tapestry that will tell the tale of whether the Democrats in the House will be united going forward.

The Wall Street Journal editorial page is rooting for conflict, with an op-ed stating:

“The schism in today’s Democratic Party may be ideologically irreconcilable. Neoliberals in the Clinton-Obama-Biden vein aren’t merely less progressive than real progressives—they are not progressive at all. Democratic centrism and progressivism are discrete movements with little but identity politics in common.” 

Discuss that among yourselves after you have fastened your breakfast nook straps.

*Washington Post: Sanders campaign in pitched battle with unionized staffers over pay, benefits.

My take: This will be catnip for conservative blogs.

*The latest on US-Iran tensions here.

My take: The lack of overnight public escalation is actually a good sign.  It is just this type of in-theater clash that experts say can often lead to missed and mixed signals that turn quickly into a cascading series of events culminating in a hot conflict and loss of life.  So far, not in this case.

Top Sports:  New York City Triathlon Is Canceled Because of Heat Warnings
New York Times

Top Business: Trump to Nominate Eugene Scalia for Labor Secretary Job
New York Times

Top Entertainment: Tom Cruise surprises Comic-Con with ‘Top Gun’ sequel trailer
AP

Big Four

Iowa

In Sioux City, Elizabeth Warren touts new plan aimed at private equity firms.

New Hampshire

Sununu signs public school anti-discrimination bill.

Castro beefing up campaign staff in N.H.

Supreme Court set to issue ruling on Northern Pass.

Nevada

Harris manager praises Nevada Democrats early caucus options.


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