Friday, November 15, 2019


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THE FRITTATA NEWS CYCLE

Pegged to Friday’s second day of open House impeachment hearings with Marie Yovanovitch slated to start around 9am ET, take in these two essential reading pieces from conservatives who care about the health of the American right and/but are no great supporters of Donald Trump:

*Peggy Noonan thinks the first hearing went well for the Democrats because the witnesses were highly credible and the Republican members don’t have a clue about how to conduct themselves.

*John Podhoretz thinks the first hearing went horribly for the Democrats because the witnesses and the Democratic members spent too much time criticizing Trump’s Ukraine policies rather than describing his offenses in a way that would convince more of the American people that he should be impeached.

My take: Read them both and decide who you think is more right.

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GOOD FOR DEMOCRATS/BAD FOR REPUBLICANS

Washington Post: Speaker Pelosi used her vast stores of credibility with the media to frame President Trump’s actions as a high crime.

Washington Post: A career OMB official is ready to break ranks with his colleagues and testify about the hold up of military aid to Ukraine, the weakest link in the White House’s defense.

Bloomberg: “Rudy Giuliani… is being investigated by federal prosecutors for possible campaign finance violations and a failure to register as a foreign agent as part of an active investigation into his financial dealings, according to three U.S. officials.”

The Guardian: Rudy is still doing loosey goosey media interviews.

New York Times: Barack Obama is sagely telling Democratic presidential candidates to “Campaign outside your political base, stay true to your beliefs and keep beating Mr. Trump in front of mind.”

My take: The impeachment process (with all its sideshows) is keeping Democrats from focusing on the very smart advice the nation’s 44th president is giving his party mates about how to beat Trump.

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GOOD FOR REPUBLICANS/BAD FOR DEMOCRATS

Reuters: “But as the first day of the historic proceedings riveted Washington and dominated cable news, interviews with residents in two of the states likely to help decide the winner of next year’s presidential election suggested voters on both sides had already made up their minds.”

New York Times: Mitch McConnell continues to bamboozle the media and cleverly play the expectations game about the length of a Senate impeachment trial.

Washington Post: Lots of third party presidential candidates are in the mix, opening the door for Trump to win reelection with less than 50% of the vote.

My take: The massive bet made by 99% of Republican elected officials to tie their political fortunes entirely to the fate and performance of President Trump is now in danger of sending them down the drain.

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TBD

Politico: Trump is turning to more traditional presidential events and a more traditional style (straight from the Bill Clinton impeachment playbook) to try to stabilize the ship.

Politico: On Trump’s Louisiana event, “At just under an hour and 10 minutes, Thursday’s rally was one of his shortest in months, and he hardly ever raised his voice or introduced new insults.”

Roll Call: Trump has put a lot on the line ahead of Saturday’s Louisiana gubernatorial election.

New York Times: Deval Patrick’s campaign (meant to save the party from a Warren or Sanders nomination) could help Warren or Sanders win the nomination.

ABC News: Bernie says AOC will play a big role if he wins.

Politico: Centrist House Democrats are pushing Speaker Pelosi to allow a vote on the new North American trade deal, as Pelosi herself says an agreement is in sight.

Wall Street Journal: Larry Kudlow says a U.S.-China trade agreement is in sight.

Washington Post: The president is going to the Supreme Court to keep his tax returns hidden, raising major issues of executive power.

New York Times: Michael Bloomberg’s potential presidential campaign gets a taste of the scrutiny that would come with a run, starting with a look at his past inappropriate statements about women.

Jon Meacham, Walter Isaacson and Evan Thomas: “To be sure, the establishment has been far from perfect, its fall from preeminence more than partly self-inflicted. Elite education and conventional expertise don’t guarantee good results….”

David Brooks: “Let me tell you a secret. The public buildings of Washington are filled with very good people working hard for low pay and the public good…. I’m impressed by the quality, professionalism and basic goodness of the people there.”

My take: If Meacham, Isaacson, and Thomas are hazy on the question of whether the establishment is a good thing with a bright future, then nobody knows nothing about nothing.

****

Twinkies cereal is finally happening.

My take: Given the number of cereals available at your typical Kroger’s, it defies logic and American history that this took so long.

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Big Four

New Hampshire

Patrick strikes moderate tone in N.H. as he launches late 2020 bid for White House.

Joe Walsh files to challenge Trump in N.H.

Nevada

Bernie Sanders working to win moderates, Latinos in Nevada.

Fresh into 2020 race, Deval Patrick to speak in Las Vegas on Sunday.

South Carolina

Sanders campaign replaces South Carolina state director.

****

Top sports story: Three ejected after nasty brawl tarnishes end of Steelers-Browns

ESPN

Top business story: Cigarette smoking rate hit record low last year as more people quit

CNBC

Top entertainment story: TV Ratings: Fox News, ABC Draw Big Impeachment Numbers

Variety

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