A really great article written by, well, me should be read along with this one. Trump keeps his Aces in the Hole
This article titled “Trump: Clinton ‘made up’ things I said. Clinton: you literally said it all – as it happened” was written by Scott Bixby and Tom McCarthy, for theguardian.com on Friday 3rd June 2016 22.22 UTC
Today in Campaign 2016
Fallout from Donald Trump’s incendiary comments about Gonzalo Curiel has continued to rain down on the campaign trail today, with the candidate doubling, then tripling down on his declaration that the Latino federal judge should recuse himself from presiding over the multi-state fraud suit against Trump University because his heritage presents a “conflict of interest.”
- In an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Trump denied that he is a racist.“I think he should recuse himself,” Trump said. Tapper asked Trump if his insistence that Gonzalo Curiel should step aside because his Latino heritage presents a “conflict of interest” is “the definition of racism,” Trump shrugged, apparently misunderstanding the question. “No. I don’t think so at all – he’s proud of his heritage, I respect him for that.” After Tapper protested, Trump interrupted. “Look,” Trump said, “He’s proud of his heritage. I’m building a wall.”
- Condemnation has poured in from all sides. In an interview with ABC, Hillary Clinton cited Trump’s own German heritage as an example of the ridiculousness of the candidate’s argument. “It makes no sense to me. The judge was born in Indiana. Yes, he’s of Mexican heritage. Donald Trump is apparently of German heritage. What does that mean? We are all Americans.”
- House speaker Paul Ryan was more, well, circumspect about Trump’s comments. Less than 24 hours after officially endorsing his party’s nominee, Ryan told WISN’s Up Front with Vicki McKenna that “the comment about the judge the other day just was out of left field,” as reported by Buzzfeed News. “It’s reasoning I don’t relate to,” Ryan continued. “I completely disagree with the thinking behind that, and so, he clearly says and does things I don’t agree with, and I’ve had to speak up on time to time when that has occurred, and I’ll continue to do that if that’s necessary.”
- Compounding Trump’s problems going into the weekend, Clinton has built a double-digit polling lead over the presumptive Republican nominee nationwide, according to the results of a new Reuters/Ipsos poll released this afternoon. According to the poll, 46% of likely voters told Reuters that they supported Clinton’s candidacy, while 35% said that they were supporting Trump.
- But all isn’t well in ClintonLand: Polling in California mere days before the June 7 primary have tightened considerably between Clinton and Vermont senator Bernie Sanders – who might have cracked the top if he had gone ahead with rumored plans to skydive into a rally in Cloverdale, California, today.
That’s it for news from the campaign trail – stay tuned for more up-to-the-second coverage from around the country!
In an interview with ABC, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton criticized Donald Trump’s call for the recusal of the federal judge overseeing the multi-state fraud suit against Trump University because of his Mexican heritage, citing Trump’s own German heritage as an example.
“If our president doesn’t believe in the rule of the law, doesn’t believe in our constitution with a separation of power with an independent judiciary, that is one of the most dangerous signals that we are dealing with somebody who is a demagogue who would rip up our most valued beliefs,” Clinton told Elex Michaelson.
“It makes no sense to me. The judge was born in Indiana. Yes, he’s of Mexican heritage. Donald Trump is apparently of German heritage. What does that mean? We are all Americans.”
“He would try to disqualify any woman who is a judge because he has said terrible things about women,” Clinton said. “Any Muslim American who’s a judge anywhere. If we start disqualifying people because of who their parents and grandparents might be and where they came from, that would be running counter to everything we believe in.”
Updated at 10.56pm BST
Donald Trump: ‘If you choose Hillary Clinton, this country is going to die’
After a cataclysmic interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper previewed this afternoon, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump ripped into likely opponent Hillary Clinton at a rally in Redding, California, telling the audience that “this country is going to die” if she is elected in November.
“Hillary Clinton is a weak person,” Trump said. “Hillary Clinton is totally scripted. Hillary Clinton is a thief. And Hillary Clinton should be in jail for what she did to our national security.”
“If you choose Hillary Clinton, this country is going to die.”
The real estate tycoon also criticized Clinton for her use of a teleprompter to deliver an aggressive foreign policy speech yesterday that called his ideas “dangerously incoherent.”
“I don’t have teleprompters; I don’t need teleprompters,” Trump said, pointing to his temple. “It’s called up here, it’s called memory, it’s called other things.”
“A lot of people didn’t know that – she was reading a script,” he continued. “She’d read a line, and then she had the phony audience. If I ever did that, I’d be run out of town, but for Hillary, it’s OK.”
Donald Trump, on “my African American”:
The Democratic National Committee has responded to Donald Trump’s interview with Jake Tapper.
Donald Trump on federal judge: ‘He’s a Mexican. We’re building a wall.’
In an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump denied that he is a racist and continued to bore into an American-born judge of Mexican descent who is presiding over the multi-state fraud case against Trump University.
“I think he should recuse himself,” Trump said.
Tapper asked Trump if his insistence that Gonzalo Curiel should step aside because his Latino heritage presents a “conflict of interest” is “the definition of racism,” Trump shrugged, apparently misunderstanding the question. “No. I don’t think so at all – he’s proud of his heritage, I respect him for that.”
The CNN anchor rephrased the question, pointing out that Trump’s insistence that a Latino judge could not rule fairly in a case against him is predicated entirely on the judge’s race.
“Look,” Trump said. “He’s proud of his heritage. I’m building a wall. Now, I think I’m doing very well…”
Tapper attempted to point out that Curiel was born in Indiana, but Trump continued.
“I’m going to do very well with Hispanics because I’m going to bring back jobs and they’re going to get jobs right now,” Trump said. “I think I’m going to do very well with Hispanics, but we’re building a wall. He’s a Mexican. We’re building a wall between here and Mexico. The answer is, he is giving us very unfair rulings – rulings that people can’t even believe. This case should have ended years ago. The best lawyers – I have spoken to so many lawyers. They said this is not a case. this is a case that should have ended. This judge is giving us unfair rulings. Now I say, why? Well, I’m building a wall, okay? And it’s a wall between Mexico, not another country.”
“But he’s not from Mexico,” Tapper said. “He’s from Indiana.”
Trump was not swayed. “Mexican heritage. And he’s very proud of it.”
Updated at 9.42pm BST
Reuters poll: Hillary Clinton widens double-digit lead over Donald Trump
Likely Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has built a double-digit polling lead over presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, according to the results of a new Reuters/Ipsos poll released this afternoon, recovering from a humiliating result last month in which the former secretary of state was tied with the political arriviste.
According to the poll, 46% of likely voters told Reuters that they supported Clinton’s candidacy, while 35% said that they were supporting Trump. The remaining 19% told Reuters that they would not support either candidate.
The survey of 1,421 likely voters was conducted between May 30 and June 3 – meaning that the numbers were likely influenced by the release of documents relating to the multi-state fraud suit against Trump University, as well as Trump’s declaration that the assignment of a federal judge of Mexican descent to the case represents “an absolute conflict” because he is “of Mexican heritage”.
On May 12, the same poll showed Clinton leading Trump by a statistically insignificant one-tenth of one percentage point.
Donald Trump, who once pledged to fund his entire campaign with his purported $10 billion fortune, is now sending fundraising emails.
Here’s video of Michelle Obama’s final commencement speech as first lady, including the apparent swipe at presumptive Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump:
First lady Michelle Obama has delivered a withering attack on Donald Trump, warning a graduating class of New York students, and through them America, that those who seek to rule by intimidation and fear end up diminishing the hope and freedom of their nations.
Without mentioning the presumptive Republican presidential candidate by name, Obama made one of the most sustained and potent attacks on Trump since he began his bid for the White House last year. She portrayed his brand of politics as un-American and dangerous, comparing him to world leaders “who stifle the voices and dismiss the potential of their citizens … who demonise and dehumanise entire groups of people because they have nothing else to offer.”
Addressing the class of 2016 at the City College of New York in her 23rd and final commencement speech as first lady, she said: “Graduates that is not who we are. That is not what this country stands for.”
She went on: “Here in America we don’t let our differences tear us apart. Here in America we don’t give into our fears, we don’t build walls to keep people out.”
A new poll from the Los Angeles Times/USC Dornsife suggests that the pivotal state of California might be a tighter contest between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders than previously thought. A survey of 1,500 registered voters found that 44% of Democrats said they’d support Sanders and 43% said they’d support Clinton in the state’s primary which will be held next Tuesday.
The results seem, at first glance, to be hugely significant. With 546 Democratic delegates available, California is the single most influential state this primary season. And, since Sanders needs 837 extra delegates to become the Democratic nominee, he’s going to need to count on Democratic Californians’ support. However, (and this will come as no surprise to anyone who has been observing voting processes in primaries so far), things are far more complicated than they first seem.
First of all, Sanders doesn’t just need to win a large number of delegates – he needs to prevent Clinton from winning the small number of delegates that she needs to cross the finish line and become the Democratic nominee. Including superdelegates, Clinton is now only 70 delegates away from that victory. What that means in practice is that Sanders can’t just win by one percentage point, as the Los Angeles Times poll suggests he might – the Vermont senator needs to pick up around 90% of the vote in California and leave Clinton with just 10%. Since Democrats (unlike Republicans) distribute delegates more proportionally to vote share, that 10% would translate to around 55 delegates for Clinton.
But that’s not all. Sanders would need similarly spectacular wins on Tuesday in Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Dakota and South Dakota to keep Clinton from winning the nomination.
If that weren’t bad enough, there’s good reason to think that the poll from the Los Angeles Times might be overstating Sanders’ share of the vote. Of the 1,500 registered voters they spoke to, 1,184 said that they were likely to vote. Since the poll was conducted so close to the primary (respondents were contacted from May 16 to 31) it’s those likely voters that are the ones to watch, and among them Sanders’ narrow lead vanishes; he commands just 39% compared to Clinton’s 49%.
Finally, the election analyst’s mantra “it’s only one poll” is important here. Looking at the average of the 14 polls that have been conducted in California so far this year, Clinton consistently has a solid lead of between 5 and 11 percentage points.
Next Tuesday’s primaries probably won’t change the names on the ballot in November – they’re still highly likely to be Clinton and Republican Donald Trump. But that doesn’t mean next week’s primaries are insignificant – understanding the demographics of those candidates’ support will be crucial to figuring out who is likely to become the president of the country.
Bernie Sanders will not be skydiving into a California rally, as was briefly, but widely speculated this morning.
Yet remarkably, it does seem that the Democratic presidential candidate’s campaign team explored the idea of parachuting the 74-year-old candidate into the event.
The unlikely rumor was widely shared on social media after a story in the Press Democrat, a local paper in northern California, suggested the Vermont senator might skydive at an evening rally hosted by a skydiving company at the Cloverdale Municipal Airport, about 90 miles north of San Francisco.
The campaign was swift to shoot down the rumor. “Ha I wouldn’t count on it,” Sanders spokeswoman Sarah Ford texted the Guardian when asked for confirmation.
However, Jimmy Halliday, owner of NorCal Skydiving, whose remarks to the local paper kickstarted the speculation, insisted that the Sanders campaign team approached him directly about the idea of having the presidential candidate skydive in front of a crowd.
“A lot of members of his team have said this would definitely be something he’s interested in,” he told the Guardian in a phone interview. “We’re ready. I would love to jump with Bernie.”
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell dodged a series of questions from MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell regarding Donald Trump’s sustained attacks on a federal judge presiding over the Trump University fraud case, telling Mitchell that the presumptive Republican nominee is “certainly a different kind of candidate.”
McConnell declined to condemn Trump’s comments or say that he thought the notion that a judge’s ethnicity should factor into their case assignment. “What I am willing to say,” McConnell said, “is that Donald Trump is certainly a different kind of candidate. You know, we had 17 people competing for the nomination Andrea and Donald Trump won the most primaries and caucuses.”
McConnell, when pressed, said that he is “unfamiliar with this particular judge,” but did say that a similar attack on a fellow Republican was “unfortunate.”
“I thought it completely unfortunate and unnecessary for our nominee to attack the governor of New Mexico, Susana Martinez, who I know well,” McConnell said. “I think these attacks don’t serve the candidate very well.”
Donald Trump is tripling down on his comments about the federal judge presiding over a fraud suit against one of his defunct companies, telling the New York Times that “I have a Mexican judge. He’s of Mexican heritage. He should have recused himself, not only for that, for other things.”
Trump’s continued attacks against Gonzalo Curiel, the federal judge presiding over the Trump University fraud case, were highlighted last night when the presumptive Republican presidential nominee told the Wall Street Journal that Curiel’s assignment to the case represents “an absolute conflict” because he is “of Mexican heritage”.
“I’m building a wall,” Trump said, of his proposed 2,000-mile barrier along the US-Mexico border. “It’s an inherent conflict of interest.”
Trump is facing three class action lawsuits against Trump University over allegations of fraud. Trump denies all the charges and has vowed to fight them in court.
The notion that judges cannot rule on cases involving religious, racial or other minorities of which they are members is universally discredited in the American legal system.
Updated at 6.41pm BST
Paul Ryan: Donald Trump’s comments on judge ‘out of left field’
The bloom is off the rose in House speaker Paul Ryan’s arranged political marriage to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. After the candidate accused the federal judge presiding over a fraud suit against one of his defunct companies of bias because of his “Mexican heritage,” Ryan told a Wisconsin radio station that he “completely disagree[s]” with Trump on the matter.
Ryan, who endorsed Trump less than 24 hours ago, told WISN’s Up Front with Vicki McKenna that “the comment about the judge the other day just was out of left field,” as reported by Buzzfeed News.
“It’s reasoning I don’t relate to,” Ryan continued. “I completely disagree with the thinking behind that, and so, he clearly says and does things I don’t agree with, and I’ve had to speak up on time to time when that has occurred, and I’ll continue to do that if that’s necessary.”
“I hope it’s not.”
Trump stepped up his attack on Gonzalo Curiel, the federal judge presiding over the Trump University fraud case, last night when he told the Wall Street Journal that Curiel’s assignment to the case represents “an absolute conflict” because he is “of Mexican heritage”.
“I’m building a wall,” Trump said, of his proposed 2,000-mile barrier along the US-Mexico border with the stated goal of preventing undocumented immigrants from entering the country. “It’s an inherent conflict of interest.”
The presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s statements follow a speech in San Diego last week in which he lambasted Curiel as “a hater of Donald Trump” and “a total disgrace.”
Vermont senator Bernie Sanders won’t be skydiving to his rally in Cloverdale, California, today, a sure blow to the candidate’s support among the extreme sports demographic.
Yesterday, a local paper had reported that Sanders’ campaign had discussed the possibility of dropping the 74-year-old senator out of a plane to enter his rally on Friday night, quoting the president of NorCal Skydiving as having said “I’ve been told they will run the idea by Bernie.”
Today, unfortunately, Sanders’ team told the Daily Beast that Sanders will appear onstage after being ferried there by more terrestrial means.
“The senator won’t be skydiving today,” wrote press secretary Symone Sanders (no relation). “Thanks!”
Former secretary of state Madeleine Albright rolled her eyes at continued scrutiny of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her tenure at the state department, telling CNN this morning that the controversy is over “a mistake.”
“Nobody is going to die as a result of anything that happened on emails,” Albright said.
Likely Clinton opponent Donald Trump, however, is a serious threat to American security, Albright continued.
“He is erratic,” Albright said. “He says crazy things. I travel abroad a lot, and our allies, they don’t think we’re weak. I have been in the situation room, and I know the temperament that is necessary.”
Hillary Clinton is so prone to prevarication that even torture couldn’t get her to tell the truth, according to one of Donald Trump’s top campaign advisers.
Barry Bennett, who once served as Ben Carson’s campaign manager, remarked today that “You couldn’t get the truth from Hillary Clinton if you waterboarded her,” in reference to the presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s promise to prosecute Clinton over her use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state.
“I mean, if this attorney general tries to block it, then, you know, special counsel should be appointed,” Bennett said. “I mean, it’s crazy! I mean, she has continued to lie about it, right? She told us the lawyers signed off on it – the inspector general said that’s not true. She said she would cooperate with all of the investigations, she stonewalled… and now everybody taking the Fifth.”
That’s when Bennett made the waterboarding reference, which seemed to shock the usually unflappable Bolduan.
“What?” she exclaimed, and Bennett repeated himself.
At a Republican debate in Manchester, New Hampshire, in February, the candidate said that he would “bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding”, or simulated drowning, if he were elected president.
Gun safety group endorses Clinton
Everytown for Gun Safety, the large anti-gun-violence group backed by Michael Bloomberg, has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president:
“Our litmus test is simple: does a candidate side with the public or with the gun lobby?” John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, said in a statement. “Hillary Clinton passes that test with flying colors – pushing back against the NRA’s extreme ‘guns for everyone, everywhere’ agenda, and ushering in a new political calculus that saving lives from gun violence is a winning issue.”
Don’t forget about Jersey
With California preparing to award a whopping 475 delegates this coming Tuesday, pollsters and pundits alike are focused on the Golden State, where Bernie Sanders appears to be challenging Hillary Clinton for the political leverage victory would bring.
But what about New Jersey? It will award 126 Democratic delegates, and its economic and political (and dare we say cultural) interlacement with New York, where Clinton scooped up 56% of the delegates, make it the state that could put Clinton over the top (including superdelegates; see bar charts below).
FiveThirtyEight’s Harry Enten points out that if Clinton scores a New York-style victory in New Jersey, she could net 14 or more delegates, likely more than the 10 or so delegates Sanders would net in the event that he won California by say two points (read about California polling here):
Here’s how the delegate count in the Democratic race stands:
Note: Also don’t forget about Puerto Rico, where Clinton support runs deep and which will award 60 delegates on Sunday.
Florida governor to meet Trump
Republican Florida governor Rick Scott, a Donald Trump supporter presiding, although not very popularly, over a presidential swing state, will meet with Trump today in New York City, ABC News reports.
Updated at 4.16pm BST
Johnson would ‘certainly look into pardoning’ Snowden
Libertarian party presidential nominee Gary Johnson, a former New Mexico governor, told Newsmax TV that he would “certainly look into pardoning” government surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden if he were elected president.
“This is someone who has divulged information that we would not know about currently — and that’s the United States government spying on all of us as U.S. citizens,” said Johnson. “I don’t want to see him in prison.”
Watch the video on Newsmax here.
Clinton to Trump: ‘you literally said all those things’
In which Trump accuses Clinton of making up things he said, without specifying which things, and she replies with a link to a campaign site containing further links to news coverage of his saying all the things she said he said. The site is called “Trump literally said all those things”. The introduction reads:
Some of the comments she referenced are so ignorant, incoherent or outrageous, it could be hard to believe they actually came out of the mouth of the GOP’s presidential nominee.
But they literally did. All of them. See for yourself — check out the lines from Clinton’s speech, and the Trump quotes behind them…
Bernie Sanders has a rally scheduled at the airport in Cloverdale, California, today. The local Press Democrat has conducted an interview with a gentleman who runs a skydiving company out of the airport. Their coverage quotes him as saying that Sanders staffers told him they would offer Sanders “the option of parachuting into the rally”. From the Press Democrat:
Jimmy Halliday, president and jumpmaster at NorCal Skydiving, an airport-based business, said he had been told by Sanders staffers Thursday that they would offer the 74-year-old Vermont senator the option of parachuting into the rally site.
“I’ve been told they will run the idea by Bernie,” Halliday said. “I can’t confirm that’s the plan. I know that’s a possibility.”
The Sanders campaign did not immediately return a call requesting comment.
Sanders outspends Clinton in California
The Bernie Sanders campaign has made 1.5 times as many ad buys as the Hillary Clinton campaign in California, NBC News reports:
A poll of likely voters in California released by the Los Angeles Times gave Clinton an unusually large (outlying) lead of 10 points among likely voters in the state in advance of Tuesday’s primary. The race is much tighter among all registered voters:
Huffpost Pollster averages have Clinton up by 6.2 points in the state and RealClearPolitics averages have her up by 4.7 points. A FiveThirtyEight forecast has Clinton as the state’s 95% likely winner.
This catchy mashup of Donald Trump footage renders him as the vocalist in the Travie McCoy/Bruno Mars hit Billionaire and turns out to be a get-out-the-vote campaign. Mark Cuban’s role is unclear but he seems excited about it:
Bar association warns attack on judge ‘risks undermining judicial independence’
American Bar Association president Paulette Brown has released a statement warning that certain unnamed people in the news may have “cross[ed] the line of propriety and risk[ed] undermining judicial independence” with personal criticism of an individual judge. The statement does not name Donald Trump.
The American Bar Association is a strong defender of judicial independence and the rule of law. The strength of our democracy and the maintenance of the rule of law lie in the independence and impartiality of our judiciary.
While publicly criticizing judicial decisions is every person’s constitutional right, levying personal criticism at an individual judge and suggesting punitive action against that judge for lawfully made decisions crosses the line of propriety and risks undermining judicial independence. Anyone running for the highest office in the land should understand that the independence of the judiciary is essential for an effective and orderly government and justice system.
Clinton defends judge, calling Trump ‘unfit’
The Hillary Clinton camp has released a statement defending federal judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is overseeing fraud cases against Trump University, against Trump’s charges that Curiel’s “Mexican heritage” constitutes “an absolute conflict” because “I’m building a wall”.
“Judge Curiel and his family epitomize the American Dream,” Clinton’s statement begins:
His parents worked hard to give their US-born children a better life. He and his brother became successful lawyers. His other brother served in Vietnam. The fact that Donald Trump doesn’t see Judge Curiel and his family as Americans makes him unfit to be president of this great nation, a nation of immigrants. In Trump’s version of America, this Latino family isn’t really American. But they are America. And Hillary Clinton will fight for ALL Americans.
Hello and welcome to our live-wire coverage of the 2016 race for the White House. Protests outside a Donald Trump rally in San Jose, California, descended into violence on Thursday night, with supporters clashing with anti-Trump demonstrators around the convention center where the candidate spoke.
The Guardian’s Julia Carrie Wong and Nicky Woolf were at the scene:
Hundreds of protesters, many of them Latino students and a large contingent of union members, had gathered peacefully outside in the late afternoon, at times jeering at Trump supporters as they passed by.
But after the rally finished, the protests turned violent as anti-Trump demonstrators chased – and in some cases punched and attacked – departing Trump supporters, some of whom appeared intent on provoking and fighting as well, while other protesters tried to prevent the attacks. Eventually riot police were deployed to control the crowd.
Inside the auditorium, Trump responded to a lacerating attack by Clinton earlier in the day in which she said he was both ignorant and incoherent on national security issues. “I think she would make money if she made speeches and sold them to people who can’t sleep,” Trump said.
Before violence broke out in San Jose (read further here), Trump was collecting the most attention Thursday night for saying that a judge’s ethnic lineage should disqualify him from overseeing a case against Trump University. The Wall Street Journal reported:
In an interview, Mr Trump said US District Judge Gonzalo Curiel had “an absolute conflict” in presiding over the litigation given that he was “of Mexican heritage” and a member of a Latino lawyers’ association. Mr Trump said the background of the judge, who was born in Indiana to Mexican immigrants, was relevant because of his campaign stance against illegal immigration and his pledge to seal the southern US border. “I’m building a wall. It’s an inherent conflict of interest,” Mr Trump said.
The comments drew condemnation from across the political spectrum, including from former George W Bush spokesman Tony Fratto:
Read further here. Critics pointed out a parallel between Trump’s argument and that made by a defendant in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, whose lawyers asserted that Judge Michael Mukasey, a future Bush attorney general, was disqualified for being Jewish and having ties to Israel:
Trump floated his theory about racial bloodlines and jurisprudence just hours after he secured the support of House speaker Paul Ryan, who had indicated an aversion to Trump’s imprecations against Muslims, Mexicans and other giant categories of people before deciding he would support Trump after all.
Here’s a clip from Clinton’s speech attacking Trump:
And here’s a section from Trump’s speech attacking Clinton:
Thank you for reading and please join us in the comments.
Updated at 2.25pm BST
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