Progressive Breakfast for May 26

Morning Message

Does the Democratic Party Platform Matter?

Generally, party platforms get no respect ... Platforms are, however, a statement of the accepted beliefs of the party assembled. They are thus a measure of the evolving consensus of the party. For citizen movements, they are a measure of their progress in defining acceptable opinion in the party. And ideas matter ... there is no question that [Bernie Sanders] has won the policy debate. And he has every reason to push to have that victory written into the party’s platform.

Burning Issues: The U.S. Role In The Israel-Palestine Conflict

Raed Jarrar, government relations manager at the American Friends Service Committee, in this Burning Issues video segment says that the Israel-Palestine conflict should not be viewed as a millennia-old intractable conflict, but a recent crisis in which the United States has been a key instigator through its “blank check” support of Israel.

California Gets Hot

California gets tight. NYT: “The poll, released Wednesday night by the Public Policy Institute of California, showed Mrs. Clinton leading Mr. Sanders among likely voters, 46 percent to 44 percent … [Sanders] took to the airwaves this week. And Mrs. Clinton has quickly responded … Her campaign had halted its advertising.”

Sanders and Trump say they want to debate. AP: “Trump … said he’d be happy to engage Sanders in a one-on-one debate — as long as significant money goes to charity. Sanders said on Twitter he’d welcome that. ‘Game on. I look forward to debating Donald Trump in California before the June 7 primary.'”

Sanders tees off on Clinton campaign tactics in Time interview: “Sanders issued a long list of complaints. ‘The corporate media is incapable of covering a national campaign in a serious way,’ he said, firing a shot at his interrogator. The Clintons, he continued, ‘play very dirty.’ Hillary’s attacks on him had been ‘outrageous,’ courtesy of her super PAC helmed by ‘the scum of the earth.’ The chair of the Democratic Party had ‘stacked’ the deck against him.”

“Clinton urged to go liberal with vice presidential pick” reports The Hill: “Hillary Clinton would be smart to move left in selecting a running mate to win over supporters of presidential rival Bernie Sanders, say Clinton allies and Democratic strategists … ‘She needs to do something in the coming weeks to show that she’s also trying to unify the party,’ one Clinton surrogate said. ‘And that would be a clear signal.'”

Clinton beats Trump with middle-class Rust Belt voters. Bloomberg: “Likely voters with annual family incomes of $30,000 to $75,000 in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin back Clinton over Trump, 46 percent to 39 percent, the latest Purple Slice online poll for Bloomberg Politics shows … When only the white middle-income participants are considered, the billionaire beats Clinton 44 percent to 40 percent. That’s behind where Republican Mitt Romney finished…”

Sanders injects himself in Senate legislative matters. Politico: “He’s actively urging Senate Democrats to reject a deal reached by House Republicans and the Obama administration to ease Puerto Rico’s debt crisis and has emerged as one of the few opponents of a landmark overhaul of chemical safety laws — the first major environmental legislation in a generation.”

UAW backs Clinton. Detroit Free Press: “[UAW President Dennis] Williams said the former secretary of state ‘understands our issues on trade, understands the complexities of multinational economies and supports American workers, their families and communities.'”

“Wasserman Schultz fights to keep her job” reports The Hill: “Perhaps the strongest show of support for Wasserman Schultz came in the House … But the mood in the Senate was different; talk of replacing Wasserman Schultz received little pushback from Senate leaders.”

Trump To Opine On Climate

Trump to speak to energy conference. NYT: “Speaking at an oil industry conference in Bismarck, N.D., Mr. Trump is expected to embrace standard Republican calls for more fossil fuel drilling and fewer environmental regulations, while possibly elaborating on his positions on climate change.”

Speaker Paul Ryan will unveil policy proposals after Memorial Day. NYT: “The first of the policy proposals, which will constitute the House’s ‘Confident America’ agenda, will focus on combating poverty, Mr. Ryan said. He added that each policy area, including national security and taxes, would be tackled less with the amorphous ideas that he has been batting around for months, but with an extensive legislative framework.”