Talk Media News
 

Victoria Jones created and edits Quick Morning News. She is chief White House correspondent with Washington DC-based Talk Media News, where her insight and analysis are made available to over 400 news talk radio stations around the country and internationally.
 

Quick News
  • Trump slip-up: 7-Eleven not 9/11 (really)
  • Democrats squabble over final NY votes
  • Biden: “Overwhelming frustration” with Israeli govt
  • GOP consultant sues Trump: Libel
  • Saudi 9/11 lawsuit: Pols hold firm
  • SCOTUS: Obama’s immigration action in trouble?
 
Trump Slip-up: 7-Eleven Not 9/11 (really) (NYT, NYT, Hill, AP, Hill, me)
• In Buffalo Monday evening, Donald Trump, told a crowd that he wanted to talk about something close to his heart. “I was down there, and I watched our police and our firemen, down on 7-Eleven, down at the World Trade Center, right after it came down.” Didn’t seem to have a clue he’d invoked convenience stores (wonder if he was really there right after – just wondering)
 
• New York’s primary today is a yuuuge opportunity for Trump to rebound from a tough stretch for his campaign. The biggest question is whether he captures more than 50% of the vote statewide, which would put him in strong position to win all of the state’s 95 Republican delegates. A big win is crucial if he hopes to wrap up the nomination before the convention in July
 
• “We’re going to get there and I believe we’re going to do it much more easily than people think and we’re going to do it on the first ballot,” Trump said Monday in New York. He said later it could be longer, but that he doesn’t think so. Then, “we’re going to beat crooked Hillary so badly that your heads will spin.” (“Tiny” Trump’s new name for Hillary Clinton)
 
• On ABC’s Good Morning America on Monday, rival Ted Cruz warned that Trump would be crushed by Democrat Hillary Clinton in a general election and suggested that he was nothing more than a vapid celebrity candidate. “He’s always interesting to watch,” Cruz said. “He’s a fun entertainer. But Donald has no real solutions.” (Cruz has no real chance today, either – Trump romp)
 
• Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) on Saturday took a veiled shot at Trump. “When a nominee gets to 1,237, he will actually be the candidate. If he doesn’t there will be a second ballot, and about 60% of the delegates who are bound on the first ballot will be free to do whatever they want. And I’m increasingly optimistic that there actually may be a second ballot.”

• Clinton vs Sanders vs Trump: Who is the true New Yorker? 🍕🍕🍕 (NYT)

 

Democrats Squabble over Final NY Votes (AP, Reuters, me)
• Hillary Clinton, who represented New York as a senator for eight years, has, since Sunday, danced to Latin music at a Brooklyn block party, vowed to defend abortion rights, prayed at a black church, drank a bubble tea at a dumpling shop in Flushing and cheered newly unionized workers in Queens (and been caught eating ice cream…)
 
• Clinton’s campaign manager Robby Mook declared the primary effectively over, saying Bernie Sanders faced a “close to impossible path to the nomination.” (only two points between them nationally) Mook said Sanders had to choose whether he wanted to stay on a “destructive path” that could hurt the party’s eventual nominee (you’d think Sanders was a Zika mosquito pest)
 
• Polling shows Clinton well ahead in New York, but Sanders hopes for an upset. “This is a campaign on the move,” Sanders shouted to a crowd of thousands in Queens Monday night. “This is a movement getting the establishment very, very nervous.”
 
• Monday, Sanders questioned whether Clinton’s campaign violated legal limits on donations by paying her staffers with funds from a joint fundraising effort by Clinton and the Democratic National Committee. Mook called the accusation “shameful” as well as “irresponsible and misleading” to “raise money for himself.”

 

• Gov Greg Abbott (R-Texas) has declared a state of emergency in Houston after record rainfall claimed five lives. Rivers burst their banks in downtown Houston, 1,200 people were rescued from rising floodwaters, at least 1,000 homes have flooded, 70,000 people were without power, 70 horses were rescued form a stable. The rain is expected to ease today (BBC)
 
Biden: “Overwhelming Frustration” With Israeli Govt (Reuters, AP, me)
• VP Joe Biden, in a speech to the pro-Israel, pro-peace advocacy group J Street on Monday, acknowledged “overwhelming frustration” with the Israeli govt and said the systemic expansion of Jewish settlements was moving Israel towards a dangerous “one-state reality” and in the wrong direction (question is whether he had foot in mouth or spoke for Obama admin)
 
• “We have an overwhelming obligation, notwithstanding our sometimes overwhelming frustration with the Israeli govt, to push them as hard as we can toward what they know in their gut is the only ultimate solution, a two-state solution, while at the same time be an absolute guarantor of their security,” Biden said (timing is intriguing – evening before Obama leaves for Saudi Arabia)
 
• A two-state solution envisages a Palestinian state on most of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, lands Israel captured in a 1967 war, and an Israeli state that absorbs some of the settlements Israel built on occupied land in return for mutually agreed land swaps
 
• Biden said his recent meetings with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas left him discouraged over the prospects for peace at the moment. “There is at the moment no political will that I observed among Israelis or Palestinians to move forward with serious negotiations,” Biden said
 
• Efforts by the Palestinian Authority to join the International Criminal Court were “only damaging moves that take us further from the path to peace,” he said. For Israel’s part, the “steady systematic expansion” of Jewish settlements on occupied land wanted by the Palestinians moved “Israel in the wrong direction.” toward “a one-state reality and that reality is dangerous.”

 

• At least 28 people have been killed and more than 200 injured in a huge explosion in the center of Kabul, Afghanistan, officials say. A Taliban spox said the group carried out the attack. It’s believed to have been a suicide attacker in a car on a govt security agency (BBC)
 
 
GOP Consultant Sues Trump: Libel (NYT, Bloomberg, me)
• Longtime GOP consultant Cheri Jacobus, who has been harshly criticized by Donald Trump, filed a multimillion dollar lawsuit Monday, accusing him and his campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, of making false statements that harmed her professionally and personally
 
• Jacobus accused Trump and Lewandowski or libeling her by depicting her as a disappointed job-seeker who turned on Trump after he declined to hire her. When Jacobus criticized Trump on CNN in late Jan/Early Feb, Trump branded her on Twitter as a “real dummy” who had “begged my people for a job.” Lewandowski said similar things on TV
 
• In the legal filing, Jacobus claims those accusations were false and caused “enormous damage to her career and reputation, significant emotional distress” and held her up to “public ridicule.” In fact, she claims, the Trump campaign had tried to hire her as a communications director. She says she decided against it due to Lewandowski’s unprofessional/erratic behavior in a meeting
 
• The jabs from the Trump camp prompted an onslaught of online abuse, according to the lawsuit and news reports. “The attacks by Trump’s followers were laced with sexual degradation and pornographic vulgarity,” the suit states. “She was depicted in numerous graphic illustrations as an appropriate victim for rape and sexual assault.” (are we surprised?)
 

• Jacobus claims during her interview, Lewandowski bragged about yelling at Fox News’s anchor Megyn Kelly and said the Trump campaign could “do whatever they wanted with Fox” and had the news channel “on its side.” “You have absolutely NO IDEA how FOX works!” Lewandowski said to Jacobus, according to the complaint – among other things (most intriguing)

 

• Approximately 300 people were arrested on the Capitol’s east front steps on Monday. That brings to 1,240 the people who have been arrested in the past week while demonstrating for reforms to how Americans vote and campaign in elections. They want Congress to vote on bills to reform campaign finance laws and modernize voter registration (Hill)

 

Saudi 9/11 Lawsuit: Pols Hold Firm (Bloomberg, NYT, Hill, me)
• “If Saudi Arabia participated in terrorism, of course they should be able to be sued,” Sen Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the No.3 Democratic leader, said in a statement Monday. Allowing a lawsuit by victims of the attacks to proceed, and the Saudi govt to be held accountable if it participated, ensured the Arab kingdom will “pay a price,” he said
 
• NYT has reported that Saudi Arabia has warned the admin that if a bill allowing the kingdom to be held responsible in U.S. courts for any role in the attacks is enacted, it might retaliate by selling up to $750 billion in Treasury securities and other assets in the U.S. Outside economists are skeptical Saudi would actually do it
 
• WH spox Josh Earnest on Monday threatened a veto. “Given the long list of concerns that I’ve expressed about rolling back core principles of international law, it’s difficult to imagine a scenario in which the president would sign this piece of legislation.” He cited sovereign immunity and alienating a key ally in the fight against ISIS and al Qaeda
 
• “What it
[the bill] would do is waive sovereign immunity for terrorist activity that occurs on U.S. soil,” Sen John Cornyn (R-Texas) said. He and Schumer wrote the bill. Cornyn added that the law already waives immunity for countries that are listed as state sponsors of terrorism. President Obama leaves for Saudi Arabia today – relations are already strained with the kingdom
 
• There’s a push to release 28 classified pages of the 9/11 Commission’s report that are thought to implicate the Saudi govt in some way in the attacks. Dem 2016ers Sen Bernie Sanders (I-Vt) and Hillary Clinton supported the bill on Monday. Clinton wouldn’t say whether she’d read the 28 pages, but urged a “hard look.” The New York presidential primary is today

 

 

• President Obama told CBS News Monday, “My expectation is that by the end of the year, we will have created the conditions whereby Mosul [Iraq] will eventually fall,” and be retaken from ISIS. “We’re not doing the fighting ourselves,” Obama said. The Pentagon announced Monday that 200 more U.S. troops are being sent to the country to support Iraqi forces fighting to retake Mosul (Hill)

 

SCOTUS: Obama’s Immigration Action in Trouble? (Reuters, me)

• President Obama’s bid to save his plan to spare millions of immigrants in the country illegally from deportation and give them work permits ran into trouble Monday at the Supreme Court. In order to win, Obama would need the support of one of the court’s conservatives – likely Chief Justice John Roberts or Justice Anthony Kennedy
 

•  The court, with four conservatives and four liberals, seemed divided along ideological lines during arguments in the case brought by 26 states led by Texas that sued to block Obama’s unilateral 2014 executive action that bypassed Congress. The program was called Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA)
 

• Liberals voiced support for Obama’s action. Conservatives sounded skeptical. A 4-4 decision would uphold lower court rulings that threw out Obama’s action last year and would doom his quest to revamp a U.S. immigration policy he calls broken. A 4-4 outcome is possible following the death of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia (can’t always tell from questions – but…)
 

• More than 1,000 people in favor of Obama’s action staged a raucous demonstration outside the court on a sunny spring day, with cheery mariachi music filling the air. A smaller group of Obama critics staged their own rally. Immigration hardliner Rep Steve King (R-Iowa) clashed with protesters outside the court. “Why are you all yelling?” said King, who was yelling himself
 

• Kennedy expressed concern that Obama had exceeded his authority by having the executive branch set immigration policy rather than carry out laws passed by Congress. “It’s as if the president is setting the policy and the Congress is executing it. That’s just upside down,” Kennedy said. A ruling is due by the end of June – maybe sooner if they’re deadlocked

&&&
 

• Obama’s plan was tailored to let roughly 4 million people – those who have lived illegally in the U.S. at least since 2010, have no criminal record and have children who are U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents – get into a program that shields them from deportation and supplies work permits
 

• One possible compromise outcome would be that the court could uphold Obama’s plan in part while leaving some legal questions unresolved, including whether the govt can provide work permits to eligible applicants
 

• Obama would also win if the justices decide the states had no legitimate grounds to sue. Texas said it had “standing” to sue because it would be hurt by the additional costs it would incur by providing driver’s licenses to those given legal status
 

• Justice Sonia Sotomayor criticized Texas’ argument about the economic harm caused by Obama’s action, saying millions of immigrants “are here in the shadows” and will affect the economy “whether we want [them] to or not.”
 

• Solicitor General Verrilli said the federal govt has regularly launched programs aimed at giving large groups of immigrants temporary legal status as part of its role establishing enforcement priorities, due to limited resources. Asked by Roberts if the govt has the power to allow all immigrants who are in the country illegally to stay, Verrilli said: “Definitely not.”

 

• Watch Johnny Depp and wife Amber Heard in their “hostage” apology video for smuggling dogs Pistol and Boo into Australia. Sooo dreadful. Did the Ozzies drug Amber? Australian Ag Minister Barnaby Joyce – of “bugger off” fame – said Depp looked like he was auditioning for “The Godfather” and said it was going around the world “like a frog in a sock” (BBC, me)

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Victoria Jones – Editor