Thursday, October 10, 2019


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CAUSE AND EFFECT

CAUSE: “Just over half of voters want President Trump impeached and removed from office, according to a Fox News Poll released Wednesday.
 
“A new high of 51 percent wants Trump impeached and removed from office, another 4 percent want him impeached but not removed, and 40 percent oppose impeachment altogether. In July, 42 percent favored impeachment and removal, while 5 percent said impeach but don’t remove him, and 45 percent opposed impeachment.”
 
EFFECT: The president is acting on the two political imperatives Team Trump knows he has.
 
1. Keeping congressional Republicans, especially Senators, on board.
 
“In the coming weeks, White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney is planning to help Trump begin a quiet charm offensive with congressional Republicans, hosting private dinners and meetings, gatherings at Camp David and other ways of expressing appreciation for their support, according to three Trump advisers who were not authorized to speak publicly.” (Washington Post)
 
2. Staying on the offense with voters (not just the base) by doing a series of rallies, including an 8pm ET mega MAGA event tonight in Minnesota, a state the New York Times points out in an essential reading piece Trump is trying hard to win – and if he wins it, he will almost certainly be reelected.
 
“There is an acknowledgment inside some quarters of the West Wing that Trump cannot ignore the skittishness of Republicans. Trump is working intently to rouse his political base to his side. Following discussions at the White House last month about the imperative to ‘get Trump out into the country,’ as one White House official put it, the president scheduled campaign rallies for this Thursday in Minnesota and Friday in Louisiana.” (Washington Post)

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CAUSE: “[Lindsey] Graham said he plans to ask his GOP Senate colleagues to co-sign a letter to the House speaker stating that they ‘do not believe the transcript of the phone call’ constitutes an impeachable offense, adding that Pelosi and other Democratic lawmakers are ‘about to destroy the nation for no good reason.’”
 
EFFECT: The Washington Post’s crafty Paul Kane points out that the media is focusing on the wrong Senators in thinking about the prospects of Senate conviction.
 
“Who is least likely to lead a rebellion? Those GOP senators running for reelection next year.
 
“If a rebellion happens among GOP senators, it’s most likely to start with a group of these veterans who do not have any short-term political pain to suffer.”
 
So, ask: Will Lamar Alexander sign Graham’s letter?
 
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 CAUSE: Some Democrats are worried that they will lose momentum on impeachment.

EFFECT: The New York Times publishes a well-reasoned op ed by law professor Noah Feldman….which reinforces the notion that no one really knows how the current Pelosi-Trump impeachment stalemate will turn out.
 
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CAUSE: Some Democrats are worried that they will lose momentum on impeachment.
 
EFFECT: Sources let the Washington Post know that Marie Yovanovitch, the former ambassador to Ukraine, is still expected to testify on Friday on Capitol Hill.
 
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CAUSE: Rudy Giuliani is not slinking away; to the contrary, he is staying front and center.
 
EFFECT: More investigative reporting on his business interests, which is a bottomless pit, illustrated by this exclusive from Bloomberg detailing an alleged effort by Donald Trump to try to enlist Secretary of State Tillerson in a gambit to help a Giuliani client with a Justice Department problem.
 
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CAUSE: The worldwide chaos and negative reaction that Donald Trump set off with his vague and shifting new Syria policy continues unabated.
 
EFFECT: Too many to list here, but read this two-paragraph blast from the Washington Post’s David Ignatius:
 
“Here’s the appalling scenario that U.S. officials fear could unfold if the Turkish invasion isn’t a quick, limited operation, as Trump apparently hopes: As security collapses in northeastern Syria, hardened Islamic State fighters could escape the prisons, storm the al-Hol camp to reunite with their families and then renew the terrorist assault against the West that they began in 2014.
 
“For Trump, what’s unfolding now in Syria is largely a self-inflicted wound. It will be politically costly for him, but there’s a deeper problem. U.S. successes in the Middle East are too rare and precious to be squandered. But that’s what appears to be happening now in this grotesque coda to the war against the Islamic State.”
 
 
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CAUSE: Elizabeth Warren seen as the clearish frontrunner for the Democratic nomination.
 
EFFECT: More stories about what she would be like as a general election candidate (Warren says she would largely continue her practice of not soliciting or meeting with fat cat donors if she is the nominee – sending worry and panic down the spines of many Democratic strategists who worry about beating the incumbent) and about what the 1% thinks she would be like as president:
 
 “The consensus among business leaders is that few of Ms. Warren’s big initiatives will be enacted, because she will tack toward the center if she secures the nomination or the White House, or because Congress and the courts won’t let her.” (Wall Street Journal)
 
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CAUSE: Smart Democrats know demographics and impeachment do not mean beating Donald Trump will be easy.
 
EFFECT: Tom Edsall keeps his essential reading streak alive with another New York Times column on the promise and challenge for Democrats in winning national elections in 2020 and beyond.
 
 
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CAUSE: U.S.-China trade talks (still the Biggest Casino on the planet now) resume.
 
EFFECT: The setting of the conventional wisdom that Trump is at this point playing a tough hand:
 
“’The America side seems very interested in a deal, and yet is demanding a good, strong deal,’ said the U.S.-China Business Council’s Mr. Allen. ‘The Chinese side seems to be strengthening their position, and they are prepared for a long-term economic disagreement with the United States.’”
 
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Top sports story: Cardinals set postseason record with 10 runs in first inning, reach NLCS
STL 13, ATL 1, STL wins series 3-2 
ESPN
 
Top business story: Acting FDA chief inspects two international mail facilities for illicit vaping and opioid products
CNBC
 
Top entertainment story: Brie Larson Says Marvel Women Have ‘Passionately’ Told Kevin Feige They Want All-Female Movie
Variety
 
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Big Four

New Hampshire
 
For 1st time, Biden declares Trump must be impeached.
 

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