Thursday, September 3, 2020

-Nancy Pelosi, caught in a classic hair snare

Hello! What A Day will be off tomorrow and Monday for Labor Day weekend. Practice safe holiday bicep-squeezing, and we'll see you on Tuesday.

The president of law and order who is truly, sincerely concerned about ballot integrity and reducing the risk of voter fraud, has an innovative new approach to making sure the election is fair and square: illegally encouraging his supporters to illegally vote twice.

  • On a visit to North Carolina, President Trump encouraged people to send in absentee ballots, and then later vote in person, musing that “if their system's as good as they say it is,” only one of the two votes will be counted. Voting twice is illegal everywhere. In the words of North Carolina’s chief elections officer, it is a “class-one felony” in North Carolina to vote twice in an election" and "attempting to vote twice in an election or soliciting someone to do so also is a violation of North Carolina law." 
  • Attorney General Bill Barr, a notorious stickler for strict enforcement of election law, responded the way any nation’s top law enforcement officer might: by claiming not to know for certain whether voting twice is a crime. “I don't know what the law in the particular state says." Barr somehow misplaced that admirable circumspection in the same interview when he wrongly asserted that absentee voting is ripe for fraud on the basis of “logic."
  • It is, of course, a big problem when the president of the United States encourages people to vote twice, and the attorney general says it might be totally kosher, depending on which state you live in. State attorneys general were thus at pains to warn people that they’d face prison sentences for following Trump’s advice. And Trump himself felt the need to “clarify” his remarks without actually discouraging illegal, duplicate voting. 

Could Trump’s increasingly brazen efforts to sabotage the election be tied to something else?

  • A tsunami of new polls Wednesday and Thursday paint a bleak picture for Trump, who received either the world’s smallest, shortest-lived convention bounce, or no convention bounce at all. He continues to trail Biden in national polls by about seven to eight points, and in swing-state polls by a slightly smaller margin. Or, as Trump put it, “.@FoxNews Polls are, as in the past, Fake News. They have been from the beginning, way off in 2016. Get a new pollster. I believe we are leading BIG!”
  • His stagnant polling may have something to do with the country’s economic and public-health climate. Initial unemployment claims remain at historic highs and continuing claims are on the rise. Trump’s stingy executive action on unemployment benefits may be about to run out of money earlier than expected. The Federal Reserve’s assessment of the economic outlook is decidedly bleak, and attributes uncertainty and the slowing pace of hiring to “the active presence of the coronavirus." So: Bring on that herd immunity strategy?

This is actually a single story. Trump’s efforts to subvert the election have grown more and more unhinged because he’s terrified of losing, and he’s losing because he’s done a terrible job as president, both before the coronavirus (when his approval rating was stuck around 40 percent) and now (when his approval rating is stuck around 40 percent). The country has seen enough, and he knows it.

On this week's Campaign Experts React to Good and Bad 2020 Ads, Dan Pfeiffer is joined by Alex O'Keefe, the director of Ed Markey's 'Green New Dealmaker' ad and the Creative Director of the Sunrise Movement. Dan and Alex react to a bio spot from Alex Morse - the primary challenger in MA-01, a digital video from the Biden campaign and a pre produced piece on the St. Louis gun couple from the RNC. Trust us, this one's not be missed

Facebook unveiled several measures meant to address concerns about election interference on its platform, which interestingly do not include “stopping politicians from plastering the website with lies.” Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company would not accept new political ads in the final week of the election, but previously-purchased political ads containing misinformation will still be fair game. Facebook will also remove posts that claim people will get COVID-19 if they vote, label other misinformation about the election and voting (the delete button only works on coronavirus content, we guess), and direct users to Reuters’s election results if ~one of the candidates~ declares victory before the results are fully tallied.

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was poisoned with a nerve agent, according to the German government. A German military laboratory identified it as a variant of Novichok, the same Soviet-era nerve agent used to poison former KGB spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in 2018. German Chancellor Angela Merkel characterized the attack as “an attempted murder” intended to silence Navalny, and called on the Kremlin to explain the attack. President Trump, who today issued multiple full-throated, hypocritical rebukes of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her visit to a hair salon, has said nothing.

Clear the Rack is back! Now through Monday at Nordstrom Rack, take an additional 25% off clearance items for a total savings of up to 75% off! Available online and in store.

A federal appeals court permanently blocked the Trump administration’s rules preventing doctors who receive federal funding from referring patients for abortion services.

A Mississippi judge ruled that all voters with underlying health conditions are eligible to vote absentee during the pandemic. 

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) have introduced legislation that would designate racism a nationwide public health crisis.

Women are not messing around with their campaign contributions this year. 

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