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The polls, the Bern, and 'Notorious RBG'

Bernie Sanders endorsed Hillary Clinton in Portsmouth, N.H.,

Bernie Sanders endorsed Hillary Clinton in Portsmouth, N.H., on Tuesday, July 12, 2016. Credit: EPA / CJ Gunther

New polls: Something for everyone

For backers of both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, there was something in polls out Tuesday to brighten or depress them.

A Reuters/Ipsos poll of likely voters taken July 8-12 found Clinton had expanded her lead over Trump by 3 points and leads 46% to 33%. But an NBC News/SurveyMonkey tracking poll taken July 4-10 had Clinton ahead by only 3 points.

Trump was in front by 2 points in a Monmouth University poll of Iowa, a swing state won by Obama in 2008 and 2012.

A Bloomberg Politics/Purple Slice poll has Clinton leading by 11 points among college-educated white voters — a category Republican Mitt Romney won by 14 points in 2012.

Feel the cold shoulder

As Bernie Sanders formally endorsed Clinton, a few dozen of his supporters walked out in protest. Winning them and other die-hards back will be no easy task for her.

Some remain suspicious that Clinton is too close to Wall Street. A new poll from an Associated Press-affiliated group that focused on millennials finds she may struggle to turn out people 18 to 30 to support her candidacy.

Clinton and her campaign have encouraged the theory that history will repeat itself — that 2016 will be much like 2008, when some of her most disappointed supporters came around to back the Democratic nominee, Barack Obama.

But the dynamics may not be the same given the depth of distrust of Clinton — a sentiment her foes will try to exploit.

Catch ’em on the rebound

The endorsement rally was trolled on Twitter by Trump, who invited Sanders supporters “who want to stop bad trade deals & global special interests” to back him, and from the left by the Green Party’s Jill Stein, who wrote: “Many Berning hearts are breaking right now.”

The take-away: Roller coaster

For Clinton, every win seems coupled with a setback, and Tuesday was no exception, writes Newsday columnist Dan Janison.

The upside: Sanders’ long-awaited endorsement. The downside: House Republicans taking another step to stoke the email scandal.

Does No Newt mean Veep Newt?

Fox News Channel announced Tuesday it “has mutually agreed to suspend its contributor agreement with Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich effective immediately” because of “intense media speculation” that Trump may choose him as his running mate.

The speculation is hardly new, but the Fox announcement did add to its intensity. Gingrich did a Fox News interview in which he predicted Trump’s announcement could come as early as Wednesday and no later than Friday.

ABC News said Trump is likely to make a public appearance with his pick Friday, but an announcement could come sooner.

Law and order, undefined

Trump has been calling himself the “law and order candidate” since the Dallas attack, but there are signs his ideas on that subject, like others, aren’t fully fleshed out.

In an interview with The Virginian-Pilot, Trump said, “Our police have got to be given the authority to solve problems” and “their power to a large extent has been, believe it or not, been taken away.”

Like what? Trump never gets to specifics.

The full Ginsburg

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg escalated her surprising attack on Trump, telling CNN “he is a faker” and “he has no consistency about him.”

Her remarks have struck Democrats as well as Republicans as injudicious political commentary by a justice who might in the future have to rule on a case involving Trump. He told The New York Times that her remarks were “a disgrace to the court and I think she should apologize to the court.”

What else is happening

  • A military man is being vetted as a potential Clinton running mate: retired Navy Adm. James Stavridis, a former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe and current dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.
  • Retired Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal told CNN that he would decline “any role” offered by Trump.
  • The Republican platform moves the party's stated goals rightward, in some ways in contrast with Trump himself, as the NYT describes it.
  • House Speaker Paul Ryan’s request to block Clinton from receiving classified intelligence briefings has been turned down by Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
  • Milking his running mate suspense, Trump appeared at an Indianapolis rally Tuesday night with Indiana Gov. Mike Pence and said: “I don’t know if he’s going to be your governor or vice president. Who the hell knows?”
  • The contrast between how Clinton and Trump address the issue of racial tensions is analyzed by The Washington Post.
  • Obama paid respects to the murdered Dallas police officers and told mourners: "I'm here to insist we're not as divided as we seem."
  • Televangelist Pat Robertson asked Trump if he would honor Ronald Reagan’s so-called 11th Commandment that one “shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican.” Trump said, “I will try,” but made no promises.
  • The chairman of The New Black Panther Party told Reuters its members plan to carry firearms for self-defense during protests in Cleveland, Several other groups, including some Trump supporters, have said they will carry weapons.
  • Trump still doesn’t believe he owes Sen. John McCain an apology for questioning his heroism as a prisoner who was tortured during the Vietnam War.
  • Did Obama's numbers rise because his main contrast of the moment is to Trump and Clinton?


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