ICE 'Deletes' Families It Now Can't Reunite
‘Deleted’ families: What went wrong with Trump’s family-separation effort. WaPo: "When a federal judge ordered the Trump administration to reunify migrant families separated at the border, the government’s cleanup crews faced an immediate problem. They weren’t sure who the families were, let alone what to call them. Customs and Border Protection databases had categories for 'family units,' and 'unaccompanied alien children' who arrive without parents. They did not have a distinct classification for more than 2,600 children who had been taken from their families and placed in government shelters. So agents came up with a new term: 'deleted family units.'... Compounding failures to record, classify and keep track of migrant parents and children pulled apart by President Trump’s 'zero tolerance' border crackdown were at the core of what is now widely regarded as one of the biggest debacles of his presidency. The rapid implementation and sudden reversal of the policy whiplashed multiple federal agencies, forcing the activation of an HHS command center ordinarily used to handle hurricanes and other catastrophes."
Tax Cuts Fuel CEO Self-Pay Boom
‘Eye-popping’ payouts for CEOs follow Trump’s tax cuts. Politico: "Some of the biggest winners from President Donald Trump’s new tax law are corporate executives who have reaped gains as their companies buy back a record amount of stock, a practice that rewards shareholders by boosting the value of existing shares. A POLITICO review of data disclosed in SEC filings shows the executives, who often receive most of their compensation in stock, have been profiting handsomely by selling shares since Trump signed the law on Dec. 22 and slashed corporate tax rates to 21 percent. That trend is likely to increase as Wall Street analysts expect buyback activity to accelerate in the coming weeks. 'It is going to be a parade of eye-popping numbers,' said Pat McGurn, the head of strategic research and analysis at Institutional Shareholder Services, a shareholder advisory firm. That could undercut the political messaging value of the tax cuts in the Republican campaign to maintain control of Congress in the midterm elections.Since the tax cuts were enacted, Oracle Corp. CEO Safra Catz sold $250 million worth of shares in her company — the largest executive payday this year. Product development head Thomas Kurian sold $85 million. The sales came after the company announced a $12 billion share repurchase."
GOP Candidates Avoid Talk Of Tax Cuts
Trump boasts about booming economy; Republicans on the trail barely mention it. NYT: "Party leaders in Washington talk frequently about the tax cuts and a 'Trump boom' that will doom the 'blue wave' this election year — or at least shrink it to a ripple. News on Friday that the economy grew at a robust 4.1 percent between April and June seemingly supplied more ammunition to a message centered on tax cut-fueled prosperity. But so far, that is not how it is playing out on the campaign trail. With little more than a week to go before voters (in Ohio) head to the polls, the airwaves are instead dominated by more general promises to create jobs and, from Republicans, by dark warnings on wedge issues such as immigration, meant to rally the conservative base. A Republican 'super PAC' is blitzing the Ohio airwaves, contending that electing Mr. O’Connor will mean “more crimes, more drugs.'"
GOP Floods OH With Dark Money Millions
GOP SuperPAC spends millions on OH special election. Columbus Dispatch: "You’ve probably never heard of the Congressional Leadership Fund, but this little-known organization could help decide who wins next week’s special congressional election in central Ohio. Backed by U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, the organization is pouring $2.6 million into TV commercials and an extensive field operation in the race to fill the seat left vacant in January when Republican Pat Tiberi got another job. The group, whose donors include Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson, Occidental Petroleum, the Scotts Co. in Marysville and Thomas Rastin of the Ariel Foundation in Mount Vernon, has two major goals: help Republican Troy Balderson defeat Democrat Danny O’Connor on Aug. 7, and keep the House under Republican control in November. At the end of June, the organization reported $71 million in campaign cash, including $30 million in donations from gambling magnate Adelson and his wife, Miriam. 'The problem is, this is the corrupt system the Supreme Court has created,' said Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy21, a public-interest organization in Washington. 'It’s a terrible system. The idea the Congressional Leadership Fund is an independent super-PAC is absurd,' Wertheimer said. 'This is an arm of the House Republican leadership and, as such, is prohibited — in our view — from accepting unlimited contributions.'"
IA Progressives Fight For Rural Votes
The fight for Iowa’s white working-class soul. The Atlantic: "Iowa’s first district, which has a high concentration of working-class voters, encompasses 20 counties in the northeastern part of the state. Fifteen of those supported Barack Obama by double digits in 2008 and 2012, but swung to Trump by four points in 2016. Republicans and some Democrats are to blame for the shift, but some 40 percent of the district’s active voters aren’t affiliated with any political party. These voters are largely credited with Trump’s victory, and they’re expected to decide the midterms, too. Finkenauer has sold herself as the candidate best able to win them over. She’s advocated for infrastructure reform, and raising the minimum wage. She talks about the Republican tax plan as a giveaway to the wealthiest Americans. Finkenauer gets why so many people in her district voted for Trump: They were tired of politicians, and Donald Trump was someone different. He’d promised to provide a voice for 'the forgotten men and women' of America. He had pledged to make healthcare more affordable, and invest in infrastructure. 'Folks were ticked,' Finkenauer says. '[People thought] things weren’t getting better, and they weren’t wrong.' The problem is that Trump didn’t mean any of it, she says. 'It was clearly talking points for him. For me, it’s my life, and there’s your difference.'"