Delaying the Election
After President Trump questioned whether or not to postpone the upcoming November presidential election, Congressional Republicans scoffed at the idea, saying that the election was going to happen regardless of what the president suggests or questions.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) downplayed Trump’s remark as a “joke” to get the media crazy to “write about it.”
Trump’s statement about the election comes after he warned of widespread voter fraud if states reverted to using a mail-in ballot option because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Trump does not have the authority to delay an election, so the election is going to happen. READ MORE
“Republicans Reject Trump’s Suggestion to Delay November Election” by Texas Politics’ Mona Salama – Republicans close to the President are overwhelming rejecting President Trump’s suggestion to delay the November election due to concerns of mail-in voting will lead to widespread voter fraud, saying the election will proceed as planned. “He can suggest whatever he wants. The law is what it is. We’re going to have an election that’s legitimate, it’s going to be credible, it’s going to be the same as we’ve always done it,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) told reporters on Capitol Hill. “I wish he hadn’t said that,” Rubio added. “But it’s not going to change. We’re going to have an election in November. And people should have confidence in it.” Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz dismissed Trump’s idea to delay the election, but defended the President’s concerns over voting fraud. “Election fraud is a serious problem we need to stop it and fight it, but no the election should not be delayed,” Cruz said. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) downplayed Trump’s remark as a “joke” to get the media crazy to “write about it.” “Obviously he doesn’t have the power to do that,” Cornyn told reporters. “I think it’s a joke. So all you guys in the press, your heads will explode and you’ll write about it. I don’t know what his motivation is.” Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) responded to Trump’s question in a tweet, saying “No, it’s not even a question.
“Herman Cain dies of COVID-19” by Texas Politics’ Javier Manjarres – Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain has died of COVID-19 in Atlanta, Georgia. Cain was reported to have been hospitalized for 30 days on oxygen but lost his battle with the virus. Gov. Mike Huckabee: “I’m heartbroken by the death of a real friend. We were both advocates of the Fair Tax and I just loved being around him. America has lost a voice for liberty. But Herman Cain was a life well lived!” Personal note: I was honored to have been one of the first people to interview Herman way back in 2011. He was a genuinely good man, and funny. He will be missed. Here >>>
“Trump Raises Idea Of Delaying 2020 Election” by Texas Politics’ Mona Salama – President Trump floated the idea of delaying the 2020 elections, warning that universal mail-in voting will lead to widespread voter fraud. In a tweet Thursday morning that is now pinned to his feed, Trump framed the suggestion as a question that the election should be delayed “until people can properly securely and safely vote?” arguing universal mail-in voting “will be the most inaccurate & fraudulent election in history.” “With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history,” Trump tweeted. “It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???” Trump has railed for months against the expansion of mail-in voting as a majority of states begin to embracing this method as an alternative to in-person voting for General election. Several states have so far mailed all registered voters a ballot request applications to apply for an absentee ballot, while five states— Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, and Utah will automatically mail a ballot to every registered voter whether they asked for one or not. This marks the first time that Trump has raised the suggestion to delay the November elections, despite rejecting this idea previously raised by his opponents and Democrats.
“The Efforts to Close the Digital Divide for North Texas Students” by NBC DFW’s Meredith Yeomans – The pandemic has pushed us further into the digital world. But not everyone was ready for it. When the shutdown began, Dr. Rebecca Good, superintendent of Legacy Preparatory Charter Academy, said nearly all of her 1,800 students needed computers. “Most of our parents are low socio-economic,” said Good, superintendent of Legacy Preparatory Charter Academy. “We had to scramble.” Now, districts across North Texas are distributing digital devices and internet hotspots to get students ready for the school year. McKinney ISD is handing out more than 13,000 MacBooks. It’s part of the districts One to the World instructional technology program aimed at providing laptops to every third through twelfth grader. It was in the works long before the pandemic. Other districts are getting federal and state help to achieve similar goals. In May, Governor Abbott launched “Operation Connectivity,” a statewide initiative to deliver digital devices and internet connectivity to districts and students.
“The number of oil and gas production jobs in Texas could hit bottom this fall” by Houston Chronicle’s Paul Takahashi – The number of oil and gas production jobs in Texas could fall to a 15-year low in the coming months and may never fully recover as the industry consolidates and produces more crude with fewer workers. Battered by the coronavirus pandemic, drilling and oil-field services companies operating in Texas employed 162,350 workers in June, about half of the 297,100 workers at their peak of employment in December 2014, according to the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers, which represents some 2,600 independent oil and gas producers. Texas lost 46,100 jobs in production and oil-field services from February to June as the pandemic crushed demand for crude, and oil companies cut drilling budgets and halted production amid historically low oil prices.
“After brutal slide in state’s upstream sector, Texas Alliance looks toward market bottoming out” by World Oil’s Kurt Abraham – During second-quarter 2020, COVID-19, as a global economic event, laid waste to energy markets, and due to the resulting economic lockdown and deep contraction in energy demand, “dealt a gut-punch to the Texas oil and gas industry, which continues midway through the year.” That is the assessment of the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers (Alliance), and it is borne out by the numbers coming from the association’s Texas Petro Index (TPI). The numbers were presented Thursday morning during a twice-yearly media briefing on the state of the TPI. The TPI is a cyclical measure of the health and vitality of the Texas upstream oil and gas economy. In chronicling the 2020 contraction, the TPI posted a one-month record decline in April and has recorded the continued fall in activity levels through June. “Petroleum energy demand dropped off the cliff, sharply and rapidly, at the same time crude oil production was peaking, particularly in Texas and the U.S.,” said Alliance Executive Vice President and Economist Karr Ingham. The TPI was created and is maintained by Ingham. TPI levels. “That would have been bad enough,” continued Ingham, but “throw in a market share temper tantrum between Saudi Arabia and Russia at the worst possible time, and you have a thoroughly devastating impact on energy markets.”
“Jobless claims in Texas fall to lowest level since March; Congress debates benefits” by Houston Chronicle’s Erin Douglas – New claims for unemployment benefits in Texas fell again last week, as they come down from a midsummer spike driven by a surge in COVID-19 cases. In a third straight week of declines, about 76,000 people in Texas applied for unemployment benefits last week. It’s the lowest level of weekly jobless claims in the state since COVID-19 cases were identified in Texas in March, but it’s still five times higher than pre-pandemic rates. Typically, about 14,000 people apply for benefits each week in Texas. Weekly unemployment claims spiked in late March and early April, surpassing 300,000 per week. New claims declined, but another spike in unemployment came in late June and early July when Texas walked back some reopening efforts because of a surge in COVID-19 cases. In late June, bars were again ordered closed, restaurants had to limit capacity and Gov. Greg Abbott issued a mandatory mask order. Nationally, the rate of new unemployment claims ticked up to 1.4 million filing for benefits last week. Still, it’s well below the highs that pushed toward 7 million per week in late March. The elevated weekly claims rate has yet to fall below 1 million and is much higher than the average 218,000 per week. Congress has been debating extending expanded unemployment benefits, as the extra $600 per week in benefits added to state benefits through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act was set to expire at the end of July. However, for claimants in some states — including Texas — because of the way the state unemployment agency’s calendar functions, the federal pandemic unemployment compensation benefits expired at the end of last week.
“Texas Sen. John Cornyn shares his thoughts on jobless benefits in coronavirus relief bill” by Fox 4 News’ Lori Brown – With enhanced jobless benefits set to end Friday, tens of thousands of unemployed North Texans are set to see their benefits drop by $600 a week unless Congress comes to an agreement. But Republicans and Democrats are still far apart on a coronavirus relief bill. Senator John Cornyn spoke with FOX4 about his position on the jobless benefits. He said the unemployed likely will not be left in a lurch, adding that before the $600 a week in benefits expires, there will likely be a proposal to temporarily extend it. But just after our interview with Sen. Cornyn Thursday, one attempt at that failed in the Senate. “I think it is really important during these tough times that we are supporting our workers, who through no fault of their own, find themselves without any income,” Cornyn said. Republicans and Democrats are still trillions of dollars apart on a coronavirus relief bill. “We don’t know why the Republicans come around here with a skinny bill that does nothing to address really what’s happening with the virus, and, and has a little of this, and a little of that. We’re not accepting that,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said. Even so, Sen. Cornyn said he is hopeful an agreement can be worked out before jobless benefits expire Friday.
“Federal gov’t, state of Texas release detailed nursing home virus data – but city of El Paso holds out” by KVIA’s Lesley Engle – While the Texas Attorney General has stated statistics about the deadly Covid-19 pandemic in taxpayer facilities are public records, the City of El Paso is still holding out for more guidance. The Office of Attorney General Ken Paxton ruled July 6 that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, or HHSC, should disclose most of its data on Covid-19 nursing homes to the public. “The attorney general ruling agreed with most of these transparency arguments and only allowed certain information that is ‘highly intimate or embarrassing’ and ‘not of legitimate concern to the public’ to be withheld under common law privacy,” the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas (FOIFT) said in news release. The Texas Health and Human Services Commission sought an opinion from the state’s attorney general after it received several public records requests, including one from the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas (FOIFT), to release specific information about which nursing homes have outbreaks of Covid-19. Many other states, including New Mexico, make statistics available to their residents.
“Feinstein: Letting Americans sue China over coronavirus response would be ‘huge mistake’” by Fox News’ Nick Grivas – Allowing citizens to sue China for damages caused by the novel coronavirus would backfire and open up the United States to the same level of scrutiny from other countries around the world, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said Thursday. Feinstein, whose remarks came during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, said, “We launch a series of unknown events that could be very, very dangerous. I think this is a huge mistake.” “Where I live… we hold China as a potential trading partner,” she said earlier. “As a country that has pulled tens of millions of people out of poverty in a short period of time. And as a country growing into a respectable nation among other nations. And I deeply believe that. I’ve been to China a number of times. I’ve studied the issues.” Feinstein claimed other countries, including China, may decide to use the new legal precedent against the U.S., setting off a chain reaction, resulting in global chaos. Her comments come three months after Missouri’s Attorney General Eric Schmitt, a Republican, provided a statement to Fox News about a lawsuit he filed against China on behalf of the state, saying that the impact of COVID-19 has led to thousands of Missourians being infected, killed and economically devastated. “In Missouri, the impact of the virus is very real — thousands have been infected and many have died, families have been separated from dying loved ones, small businesses are shuttering their doors, and those living paycheck to paycheck are struggling to put food on their table,” he wrote.
“Amazon, Apple, Facebook Show Dominant Results, Grip on Society” by WSJ’s Sebastian Herrera – Amazon.com Inc. AMZN 0.60% delivered soaring quarterly sales and profit, leading a pack of tech giants on Thursday that reported thriving business during the throes of the coronavirus pandemic and highlighting the industry’s central place in business and society at a time of growing concern over its clout. The success of Amazon, Apple Inc. AAPL 1.21% and Facebook Inc. FB 0.52% in the face of a pandemic that has caused unprecedented economic disruption and millions of job losses shows how tech giants have become even more indispensable at a time when people are living and working more online. The companies showed strength in businesses ranging from gadgets and online retail to cloud computing and digital advertising. Amazon reported record revenue and profit even as it spent $4 billion between April and June to stabilize its supply chain and improve worker safety. The Seattle e-commerce pioneer now employs more than 1 million workers, the second-largest in the U.S. Amazon reported $88.9 billion in sales as a flood of customers grew to rely more than ever on online shopping. Profits doubled to a record $5.2 billion, far exceeding analyst expectations. Apple proved to be another example of the technology industry’s strength in the pandemic, reporting a better-than-expected 11% increase in quarterly sales due to strong demand for apps, work-from-home devices and a new, low-price iPhone.
“2 US oil executives released from Venezuela prison to house arrest” by CNN’s Vivian Salama – Two American oil executives held in an overcrowded Venezuelan prison for almost three years have been placed in house arrest, a sign that the embattled government of Nicolas Maduro may be easing its stance toward the detainees. Gustavo Cárdenas and Jorge Toledo were released on house arrest on Thursday evening, days after a humanitarian visit to Caracas by former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and a team of nongovernment negotiators. A person involved in the negotiations called it a “positive first step” and thanked Maduro for the gesture, while also calling for the release of all six Americans detained. This is a breaking story and will be updated.
“Susan Eisenhower calls on US leaders to ‘unify this country,’ says division is a ‘national security issue’” by Fox News’ Yael Halon – Susan Eisenhower, the granddaughter of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, told “The Story” Thursday night that America’s leaders must find the “language, the methods and the means to unify this country” amid the coronavirus pandemic and increasing urban violence and unrest. “We really need leadership that leads the entire country,” Eisenhower told host Martha MacCallum, later adding, “it’s so serious, it really is a national security issue.” Susan Eisenhower, one of the 34th president’s four grandchildren, is the author of the forthcoming book, “How Ike Led: The Principles Behind Eisenhower’s Biggest Decisions.” In his first State of the Union address as president, Dwight D. Eisenhower famously declared his belief in “a middle way between untrammeled freedom of the individual and the demands for the welfare of the whole nation. This way must avoid government by bureaucracy as carefully as it avoids neglect of the helpless.” “One of the big changes between decades ago and now [is that] these political parties … are really only speaking to their base,” Susan Eisenhower said. As a result, she went on, the voices of a “large majority of Americans” are being drowned out. “I think another problem here too, [is] that the only voices really out there are the extreme voices …” she said. “I think the big middle is wondering, ‘What is the plan?’ and ‘How are we going to meet these goals?’ and both sides have not in any way satisfied that group.”
“GOP Leaders Rebuff Trump’s Suggestion of Delaying Election” by WSJ’s Tarini Parti and Alex Leary – President Trump floated the idea of delaying the November presidential election for the first time in a tweet Thursday until a time when “people can properly, securely and safely vote,” prompting top Republicans and Democrats in Congress to swiftly dismiss the idea. A record number of Americans are expected to vote by mail in the November election because of the coronavirus pandemic. After initially defending his tweet calling for an election delay, Mr. Trump said at a press conference later Thursday: “Do I want to see a date change? No, but I don’t want to see a crooked election.” The date of the election can only be changed by Congress, and lawmakers from both parties—including some of the president’s closest allies—said changing the date wasn’t an option. “We’ll cope with whatever the situation is and have the election on Nov. 3 as already scheduled,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said in an interview with WNKY TV in Bowling Green, Ky. Election Day in the U.S. was fixed as the first Tuesday after Nov. 1 by an act of Congress in 1845 and would require new legislation for it to be delayed. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) responded to Mr. Trump’s tweet Thursday with a tweet quoting an excerpt from Article II, Section I of the Constitution stating that the authority to set election dates is held by Congress.
“EXCLUSIVE: Fearing Trump interference, FBI agents hid copies of Russia investigation docs” by CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin – In the hours after President Donald Trump suddenly fired FBI Director James Comey, on May 9, 2017, his former subordinates in the J. Edgar Hoover Building wondered if there would be more shoes to drop. Would Trump dismiss more people? Would he shut down the investigation of his campaign’s ties to Russia? Would the President demand that the Bureau cease its investigation of Michael Flynn, Trump’s onetime national security adviser?
In response to these concerns, the FBI took extraordinary — and previously undisclosed — steps to protect its investigations. From Comey’s first meetings with Trump, shortly after he won the presidency, the FBI director developed misgivings about his new boss’ behavior — about Trump’s demands for “loyalty,” and even more unnerving, his request that the Bureau drop its investigation of Flynn. Comey’s conversations with Trump had been so distressing that the director started writing up contemporaneous summaries of their interactions and sharing them with a handful of top officials at the Bureau. Now, suddenly, Comey was out — and the question arose of what to do with his memos about his conversations with the President.
“4 LA men admit to Skid Row voter-fraud scheme, DA announces” by Fox News’ Louis Casiano – Four men have admitted to offering homeless people in Los Angeles money and cigarettes in exchange for false and forged signatures on ballot petitions and voter registration forms, authorities said Wednesday. Richard Howard, 64, and Louis Thomas Wise, 37, pleaded no contest last week to one felony count each of subscribing a fictitious name, or the name of another to an initiative petition and registration of a fictitious person, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said. Christopher Joseph Williams, 41, and Nickey Demelvin Huntley, 45, each pleaded no contest to one felony count of circulating an initiative or petition containing false, forged or fictitious names. Four defendants — one of whom is still being sought by authorities — have yet to be sentenced, the district attorney’s office told Fox News. An office spokesperson declined to specify what group or organization the defendants were working with when they committed the alleged fraud. Prosecutors said the group solicited hundreds of false and forged signatures on state ballot petitions and voter registration forms in Los Angeles’s Skid Row neighborhood, a downtown area long plagued by homelessness. They allegedly offered individuals $1 and cigarettes for their participation in the scheme during the 2016 and 2018 election cycles.
“Families File First Wave of Covid-19 Lawsuits Against Companies Over Worker Deaths” by WSJ’s Janet Adamy – Employers across the country are being sued by the families of workers who contend their loved ones contracted lethal cases of Covid-19 on the job, a new legal front that shows the risks of reopening workplaces. Walmart Inc., Safeway Inc., Tyson Foods Inc. and some health-care facilities have been sued for gross negligence or wrongful death since the coronavirus pandemic began unfolding in March. Employees’ loved ones contend the companies failed to protect workers from the deadly virus and should compensate their family members as a result. Workers who survived the virus also are suing to have medical bills, future earnings and other damages paid out. In responding to the lawsuits, employers have said they took steps to combat the virus, including screening workers for signs of illness, requiring they wear masks, sanitizing workspaces and limiting the number of customers inside stores. Some point out that it is impossible to know where or how their workers contracted Covid-19, particularly as it spreads more widely across the country. The new coronavirus has created a global health and economic crisis, responsible for the death of more than 150,000 people in the U.S. while straining resources and institutions.
“Co-founder of influential conservative group: Trump’s tweet floating election delay is grounds for impeachment” by CNN’s Paul LeBlanc – The co-founder of the conservative Federalist Society said Thursday in a blistering New York Times op-ed that President Donald Trump’s tweet musing about a delay to November’s presidential election is grounds for impeachment. Steven Calabresi, a Northwestern University law professor who has offered broad defenses of the President in recent years, wrote, “I am frankly appalled by the president’s recent tweet seeking to postpone the November election. Until recently, I had taken as political hyperbole the Democrats’ assertion that President Trump is a fascist.” “But this latest tweet is fascistic and is itself grounds for the president’s immediate impeachment again by the House of Representatives and his removal from office by the Senate,” he said.It’s a significant break from the co-founder of one of the most influential groups in Republican politics. The Federalist Society has emerged as a leading conservative and libertarian voice in recent years, urging a limited role for judges in society’s problems. The group has also worked closely with Republican administrations to influence the selection of judges. Its leaders advised the George W. Bush administration on appointments and, for Trump, have become an even closer partner in screening candidates for the bench. The scathing assessment comes hours after Trump explicitly floated delaying November’s election in a tweet claiming without evidence that the contest will be flawed.
President Donald Trump @realDonaldTrump– My Administration has been focused on finding treatments for Coronavirus. If you’ve recovered from Coronavirus, donate your plasma today to help SAVE LIVES! Together, we will beat the Virus!
Chuck Schumer @SenSchumer –It’s July 30th, and President Trump still doesn’t have an adequate national testing strategy.