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.


Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Quick News

  • Kasich: Out / Trump’s The One
  • “President Trump?” – First 100 days
  • Bernie won’t commit to Clinton
  • Obama: Flint crisis “I’ve got your back”
  • DoJ warns North Carolina: Bathroom law
  • Prince arranged to meet addiction doctor: Lawyer

Kasich: Out, Trump: The One (AP, Hill,Politico, Texas Tribune, me)

• Donald Trump’s last Republican rival, Gov John Kasich (R-Ohio), ended his quixotic presidential campaign Wednesday: “As I suspend my campaign today, I have renewed faith, deeper faith, that the Lord will show me the way forward and fulfill the purpose of my life,” Kasich said in Columbus, Ohio. So, Trump is the GOP nominee. Deep breaths

• Some GOP leaders began reluctantly rallying around Trump, but others agonized over their party’s future. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) issued a frosty statement of support noting Trump’s “obligation” to bring the party together. Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis) was notably silent (won’t be long, probably working out his frustration at the gym)

• Astonishingly, and for the first time since his own presidency, George H.W. Bush plans to stay silent in the race and doesn’t intend to endorse Trump, a spox said. Also, former President George W. Bush “does not plan to participate in or comment on the presidential campaign,” a personal aide said. (massive wet slaps in Trump’s face) W campaigned for brother Jeb earlier this year

• Several GOP senators and governors said they would support Trump, according to a survey by AP, though some struggled. Sen Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) said that while she would support him in the election, she wouldn’t endorse his candidacy (she’s in a tough reelection campaign and is pulling out all the stops, while trying to straddle both sides of the fence)

• Trump has already started (as I predicted) to reverse positions – on the minimum wage, for example. “I’m looking at that,” he told CNN about increasing wages. During a debate he had said: “I have to say it, but we have to leave it the way it is.” (he’ll have no trouble changing positions on anything and not blinking – because it doesn’t matter to him – he just wants to win at all costs)


• The Rolling Stones on Wednesday asked Donald Trump to stop playing their music on he campaign trail “immediately,” saying they have “never given permission” to his campaign. Trump has played several Stones songs at rallies. Keith Richards last year said a Trump presidency would be “the worst nightmare.” (bet he’s had a few) (Hill, me)


“President Trump?” – His First 100 Days (NYT, me)
• NYT interviewed Donald Trump three times recently, including on Saturday. Shortly after the 8 November election, President-elect Trump and his VP – most likely a governor or member of Congress – Kasich? (Ben Carson part of the vetting team) – would begin interviewing candidates for the open SCOTUS seat and quickly settle on a nominee in the mold of Justice Antonin Scalia
• Trump would launch a charm offensive to start “building a govt based on relationships,” perhaps inviting the GOP leaders Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell to escape the chilly DC fall and schmooze at Mar-a-Lago over golf and two-pound lobsters (smaller lobsters are often sweeter, I’ve found – but bigger is boastier)
• On Inauguration Day, he would go to a “beautiful” gala ball or two, but focus mostly on rescinding President Obama’s executive orders on immigration and calling up corporate executives to threaten punitive measures if they shift jobs out of the U.S. (bullying, to you and me)
• And by the end of his first 100 days as the nation’s 45th leader, the wall with Mexico would be designed, the immigration ban on Muslims would be in place, the audit of the Federal Reserve would be underway and plans to repeal Obamacare would be in motion. “I’m not running for president to make things unstable for the country,” he said (no, course not)


• “We can’t afford to waste time,” Trump said Saturday. ” I want a VP who will help me have a major impact quickly on Capitol Hill, and the message will be clear to the nation and to people abroad that the American govt will be using its power differently.” But he acknowledged that he might face significant and incessant protests – even as he takes the oath of office (ban em?)
• “I know everyone won’t like everything I do, but I’m not running to be everyone’s favorite president,” Trump said. “Things are seriously wrong in this country. People are hurting, business is hurting. I’m running to move quickly to make big changes.” (just might run up against the juggernaut of two other branches of govt…)
• Trump wants to put strong-willed people – biz execs and generals are mentioned most often – in charge of cabinet agencies and throughout his senior staff, and direct them to negotiate deals and plans with congressional leaders and state officials, as well as insurance companies and others in the private sector (are generals the best at negotiating deals?)
• Trump pledged to deliver on his campaign promises, even if they prove disruptive or explosive. On his first day in office, he said, he would meet with Homeland Security officials, generals and others – didn’t mention diplomats – to take steps to seal the southern border and assign more security agents along it (think diplomacy is a thing of the past)


• He would also call the heads of companies like Pfizer, Carrier Corp, Ford and Nabisco and warn them their products face 35% tariffs because they’re moving jobs out of the country. Democrats and some Republicans have warned that financial markets would react poorly and his protectionist stances might plunge the country into recession (he says that’s rubbish)
• Calling foreign leaders? “They would not be a priority.” “We have to take a tougher stand with foreign countries,” Trump said. We’re like the policemen of the world right now. So I wouldn’t be calling them up right away and getting more entangled.” (it’s called common courtesy. British PM David Cameron says he won’t apologize for telling Trump off over his Muslim comments)
• He said he had no ambitious renovation plans. (whew – but the WH china? mind boggles) His daughter Ivanka would probably stay with his company, but he said he would seek counsel from her and her husband Jared Kushner, and noted that family members had served in admins before
• SecDef? Treasury sec ? UN ambassador? “I want people in those jobs who care about winning. The UN isn’t doing anything to end the big conflicts in the world, so you need an ambassador who would win by really shaking up the UN.” (what does that even look like?)


Bernie Won’t Commit to Clinton (Hill, Fox News, Hill, AP, Hill, NPR, me)

• On NPR this morning, Bernie Sanders wouldn’t commit to campaigning for Hillary Clinton this fall if she becomes the nominee, even though he said that a “Donald Trump presidency would be a disaster for this country.” “I will do everything in my power to make sure he does not become president.” But he was asked specifically – and he wouldn’t say if Clinton was qualified, either
• On Cinco de Mayo today, Clinton plans to rally supporters at a community college that serves heavily Hispanic cities on the edge of Los Angeles. Clinton is expected to do well in the open 7 June California primary with older Democrats, Hispanics and black voters, while Bernie Sanders is likely to perform better with younger voters and independents
• Meanwhile, Clinton couldn’t escape more bad news on two fronts about her emails. Romanian hacker Marcel Lazar, aka “Guccifer,” told NBC News and Fox News that he had easily hacked into her email server on more than one occasion. His hack into the email account of Clinton ally Sidney Blumenthal first brought her private email to light. He offered no evidence to support his claim
• “There is absolutely no basis to believe the claims made by this criminal from his prison cell,” the Clinton camp wrote in a statement. “In addition to the fact he offers no proof to support his claims, his descriptions of Sec Clinton’s server are inaccurate. It is unfathomable that he would have gained access to her emails and not leaked them the way he did to his other victims.” (point)
• Guccifer is currently in jail in Va facing other cybercrime charges. Separately, a DC federal judge on Wednesday opened the door to interviewing Clinton as part of a review into her use of her private email server while SecState, along with current and former State Dept employees, likely before the convention (maybe judge is feeling the bern…)


• The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will unveil a proposed rule today that would restore cunsumers’ rights to bring class action lawsuits against financial firms, giving Americans major new protections and delivering a serious blow to Wall Street that could cost the industry billions of dollars – would apply to bank accounts, credit cards and consumer loans (NYT)
Obama: Flint Crisis “I’ve Got Your Back” (Hill, Politico, me)
• President Obama rallied residents of Flint, Mich, on Wednesday, saying: “I’ve got your back.”He blamed the city’s water crisis on a broader “culture of neglect” within govt. The lead issues plaguing Flint’s water supply came about because of a “broader mindset, a bigger attitude – a corrosive attitude – that exists in our politics and exists in too many levels of govt,”
• “It’s a mindset that believes that less govt is the highest good, no matter what.” “It’s a mindset that says environmental rules, designed to keep your water clean, your air clean, are optional or not that important. … It’s an ideology that undervalues the common good, that says we’re all on our own.” (major slam at Gov Rick Snyder (R), who he’d been palling around with Wed)
• The city of 100,000 people, Obama said, “will come back” stronger than ever, but he said political leaders, including Snyder, need to acknowledge govt’s role in helping American cities. He dismissed the “small govt ideology” that he said diminishes govt services, especially for poor cities such as Flint
• “Volunteers don’t build county water systems and keep lead from leeching into our drinking glasses,” he said. “We can’t rely on faith groups to reinforce bridges and repave runways at our airports. We can’t ask second graders … to raise enough money to keep our kids healthy.” (oh why not – have the kiddies repave the runways – child labor – nothing wrong with that)
• Obama drank filtered tap water while there – first in a photo op at a presser, and then to broad applause during his afternoon speech after major coughing. He urged residents to get filters so they can drink the water safely, and said children who drank unfiltered water should get checked for lead poisoning problems. “We’ve got to fix the culture of neglect,” he said
• Earlier, Snyder was instantly and loudly booed when he took to the lectern at a school gymnasium, with Obama in the audience. As Snyder started speaking, there were loud, angry boos and jeers. The crowd got angrier when Snyder said “we have a short-term water crisis.” When he said “govt failed you,” several people yelled “you failed us!” Boos continued until he left the stage…


DoJ Warns North Carolina: Bathroom Law (AP, WaPo, me)
• In a letter to Gov Pat McCrory (R-NC), the Justice Dept put North Carolina on notice that federal officials view a state law as violating federal Civil Rights Act protections barring workplace discrimination based on sex. Provisions of the state law directed at transgender state employees violate their anti-discrimination protections, the letter said
• McCrory has defended the state law, which limits legal protections to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. It also requires transgender people to use public bathrooms that conform to the sex on their birth certificate. The DoJ intervention puts the state in danger of losing hundreds of millions of dollars in federal school funding (the heat is on)
• The letter effectively serves as a warning to the state to proceed at its own peril or risk being sued. The letter seeks confirmation by Monday that “the State will not comply with or implement H.B. 2, and that it has notified employees of the State and public agencies that, consistent with federal law” they can use access bathrooms of their gender identity
• The gpvt could file a lawsuit to protect state employees from discrimination, the letter said. The DoJ has also notified the University of North Carolina system that the state law also violates Title IX of the Civil Rights Act, which bars discrimination in education based on sex, the letter said. That could lead to NC losing hundreds of millions of dollars in federal school funding
• Separately, a week after the small city of Oxford, Ala, passed its own bathroom ordinance that threatened violators with up to six months in jail, officials there backed away and recalled it during a meeting Wednesday. (I’ve used the men’s room when the line for the women’s is super long. I wouldn’t fancy six months in the Oxford jail, thank you)
Prince Arranged to Meet Addiction Doctor – Lawyer (Star Tribune, AP, NYT, me)
• Prince was found dead one day before he was scheduled to meet with Dr Howard Kornfeld, a national authority on opioid addiction treatment, attorney William Mauzy said Wednesday. Kornfeld was called by Prince reps the night of 20 April because Prince “was dealing with a grave medical emergency.” (so call an ambulance – don’t do what happened next – seems a bit casual)
• Kornfeld could not clear his schedule to meet with Prince the next day, but planned to fly out the following day. Instead, his son Andrew Kornfeld, not a doctor, flew out and was one of three people to find Prince unresponsive that morning. Mauzy said he also arranged for a Minneapolis doctor to evaluate Prince and the doctor had cleared his schedule for the following morning


• NYT has a really good feature story today on Prince’s addiction and an intervention too late. It’s very sad
• Mauzy said Andrew Kornfeld was carrying a small amount of buprenorphine, which Howard Kornfeld says on his website is a treatment option for patients with addiction issues that offers pain relief with less possibility of overdose and addiction. Mauzy said Andrew Kornfeld never intended to give it to Prince, but planned to give it to the Minnesota doctor
• Within days of Prince’s death, sources told the Star Tribune that his use of painkillers, which were found at the scene, had become the focus of the investigation. As part of their probe, investigators are trying to find out where Prince got the pills and who provided them. It was hoped that Prince would agree to go to California for long-term care under Kornfeld’s supervision
• A law enforcement official has told AP that investigators are looking into whether Prince died from an overdose. Also whether Prince suffered an overdose when his plane made an emergency landing in Moline, Ill, less than a week before he died. Prince had suffered from hip and joint pain for years. The U.S. Attorney’s office and the DEA have joined the investigation


• In honor of #MayThe4thBeWithYou Wednesday, President Obama and Michelle Obama dance with R2-D2 and some Storm Troopers at the WH (she’s got some moves. He really only has one go-to dance move. It’s about as mooovey as R2-D2’s. Move or move not, Mr President)

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Victoria Jones – Editor