David Herszenhorn of the New York Times: "all but clinched victory for his on Tuesday, as two Democratic senators threw crucial support behind the landmark accord. The announcements by the senators, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Chris Coons of Delaware, came a week before the Senate was to formally debate a Republican resolution disapproving the agreement between Iran and six world powers. Mr. Obama would veto any such resolution, and with further announcements of support for the accord expected as soon as Wednesday, any move to override him would almost certainly fail. Mr. Coons’s decision in particular is likely to have resonance with the few remaining undecided Democrats." nuclear deal
Peter Eavis & David Jolly of the New York Times: "Stock markets around the world tumbled again on Tuesday, dashing hopes that financial markets would calm down after two weeks of turbulence. Investors appear to be growing more nervous about the strength of the global economy. China released a weak report on manufacturing on Tuesday, and an influential international policy maker sounded a downbeat note on the outlook for Asian economies."
Greg Miller of the Washington Post: "The CIA and U.S. Special Operations forces have launched a secret campaign to hunt terrorism suspects in Syria as part of a targeted killing program that is run separately from the broader U.S. military offensive against the Islamic State, U.S. officials said. The CIA and the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) are flying drones over Syria in a collaboration responsible for several recent strikes against senior Islamic State operatives, the officials said. Among those killed was a British militant thought to be an architect of the terrorist group’s effort to use social media to incite attacks in the United States, the officials said." CW: I guess it isn't secret any more.
Issi Lapowsky of Wired: "Over the next few days, the President will be posting photos [on Instagram] of his trip to Alaska — photos we’re told he’s taking himself -- where he’ll be meeting with world leaders to discuss the pressing problem of climate change."
Melinda Deslatte of the AP: "The U.S. Justice Department told a federal judge that Gov. Bobby Jindal's decision to oust Planned Parenthood from Louisiana's Medicaid program appears to violate federal law by denying Medicaid patients the right to choose their health care providers. In a court filing, the agency said the Jindal administration hasn't offered 'sufficient reasons' to keep Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast's clinics in New Orleans and Baton Rouge from receiving Medicaid payments. Removing Planned Parenthood from the Medicaid program 'without providing any justification related to (the organization's) qualifications to provide medical services would violate Louisiana's obligations under the Medicaid statute's "free choice of provider" provision,' the Justice Department wrote." ...
... Jackie Calmes of the New York Times: "With the calls to stop funding for Planned Parenthood, a visit to New Orleans and Baton Rouge suggests that it would not be as easy to do without the nonprofit centers as some Republicans and their anti-abortion allies say. Other states would face similar problems. Louisiana is among a number of states counted as medically underserved: It has a large poor and unhealthy population, with high rates of unintended pregnancies, a shortage of health professionals and too few who will accept Medicaid, as Planned Parenthood does."
Lisa Miller of New York on Pope Francis's letter re: absolution for abortions (story linked yesterday): "... what’s breathtaking about this move is that Francis has chosen abortion, of all things, as the issue on which to stake this vision of mercy.... He singled out abortion, which just so happens to be the most divisive culture-war issue of the past half-century — the issue around which the politically powerful religious right coalesced..., the issue that has won and lost innumerable elections and pitted whole American tribes against one another in red-faced screaming battles of 'values.' He is making a bet that his vision of a compassionate church can overcome all of that.... Francis knows that Catholics have hardly been bystanders in this culture war, but active participants — that is another reason his choice of cause is so stunning.... Francis is not changing doctrine. He has not condoned abortion...."
Shocking New Video Proves Hillary Clinton Is a Hardened Criminal. Dana Milbank: "Conservative activist James O’Keefe, whose undercover videos brought down ACORN and embarrassed National Public Radio, came to Washington Tuesday to unveil evidence of 'illegal activity conducted by high-level employees within Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.' He then rolled tape of ... a Canadian woman attempting to buy a T-shirt and some campaign pins at a Clinton rally. To O’Keefe, this was evidence of foreign contributions being made to Clinton – an 'illegal activity' with a total value of $75." Then it turns out that the Clinton campaign refused to sell the shirt to the supposed foreigner (O'Keefe couldn't verify that the woman actually was Canadian -- [maybe she kept saying "eh"]), so O'Keefe's videographer bought the shirt for her. "Even in the anything-goes world of the Clinton scandal industry, though, O’Keefe’s latest exercise suggests her accusers are running out of ammunition. O’Keefe’s video did show evidence of law-breaking – by his own organization."
Karen Tumulty of the Washington Post: "The organizers of the next Republican presidential debate have announced changes to debate criteria that mean former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina will almost certainly join the rest of the top-tier candidates on the main stage at the Reagan Library on Sept. 16. 'CNN reevaluated its criteria and decided to add a provision that better reflects the state of the race since the first Republican presidential debate in August,' the network announced. 'Now, any candidate who ranks in the top 10 in polling between August 6 and September 10 will be included.'"
Meet the Trump Voters. Tom Jensen of Public Policy Polling: "Our new poll finds that Trump is benefiting from a GOP electorate that thinks Barack Obama is a Muslim and was born in another country, and that immigrant children should be deported. 66% of Trump's supporters believe that Obama is a Muslim to just 12% that grant he's a Christian. 61% think Obama was not born in the United States to only 21% who accept that he was. And 63% want to amend the Constitution to eliminate birthright citizenship, to only 20% who want to keep things the way they are. Trump's beliefs represent the consensus among the GOP electorate. 51% overall want to eliminate birthright citizenship. 54% think President Obama is a Muslim. And only 29% grant that President Obama was born in the United States. That's less than the 40% who think Canadian born Ted Cruz was born in the United States."
Alan Rappeport of the New York Times: Donald "Trump invited Javier Palomarez, president of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, to his Manhattan office for a meeting to clear the air. Each were joined by two staff members for a 90-minute meeting that Mr. Palomarez described as surprisingly cordial and productive."
Ed O'Keefe & Sean Sullivan of the Washington Post: "Jeb Bush went on the offensive Tuesday against GOP presidential front-runner and frequent antagonist Donald Trump, releasing an attack video portraying the mogul as a closet liberal and signaling that he will attempt to bring Trump down in coming weeks.... Allies of the former Florida governor insist that he had no choice but to adopt a more aggressive posture, elevating his feud with Trump to the marquee contest in the GOP primary contest." ...
... NIce work, Jeb! Your vid makes Trump look pretty good:
Maybe you should have asked Jimmy Kimmel to help you out:
Trip Gabriel of the New York Times: "... while almost all Republicans were upstaged by the bombast of Donald J. Trump in recent months, [Ben] Carson, a retired neurosurgeon whose low-key personality and celebrated medical career are the antithesis of a politician’s usual path, gained ground as few seemed to notice."
Andy Borowitz: "Saying that 'things just didn’t work out,' the billionaire Koch brothers have decided to put Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker up for sale. The Kochs, who earlier had purchased Gov. Walker with great fanfare, announced their plan to sell the politician in a terse statement from Koch Industries headquarters in Wichita." Borotwitz gives no hints of the Koch's next investment. ...
... Joshua Green of Bloomberg: "... standard-issue Republican candidates such as Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who have tried to emulate Trump, typically fail and will always fail" because if they were honest & forthcoming, "it upsets the patrons and supporters they depend on for their livelihood (this is another Trump straight-talk point)." ...
... CW: There's the Koch-22: GOP candidates must be devious & evasive to please the Kochs, but to win public support, they must say things that would displease the Kochs. This works out okay if all the candidates follow a phony, evasive party script (think 2012). But an outsider candidacy like Trump's breaks the official GOP liars' code. Remember Mitt's saying that one only talks about wealth inequality "in quiet rooms." What he meant was that he & his billionaire friends might discuss these matters among themselves, but publicly politicians should talk only about realizing the American dream through hard work, innovation, freeedom, blah-blah. ...
... Walker Rule 1(f): When You Say Something Monumentally Stupid (and we're talking 5,500-mile Monument Stupid here), Pretend It Was "Just a Joke." Tierney Sneed of TPM: "Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) said Tuesday that things had 'run amok' with reports that he was open to building a wall on the U.S.' northern border and that all the talk was 'just a joke.'"... He said Sunday that building a wall was a 'legitimate issue' to be considered." CW: Every word Walker utters is a lie, including "and" and "the." (Thank you, Mary McCarthy.)
... CW: Let's hope the DOJ arrests Bobby Jindal for breaking federal law in his anti-Planned Parenthood pander (story linked above). Otherwise, if Perry leaves the race, there won't be a single GOP candidate left who's currently under indictment. ...
Beyond the Beltway
Ian Lovett of the New York Times: "California has agreed to an overhaul of its use of solitary confinement in its prisons, including strict limits on the prolonged isolation of inmates, as part of a landmark legal settlement filed in federal court on Tuesday. The settlement is expected to sharply reduce the number of inmates held in the state’s isolation units, where inmates are often kept alone for more than 22 hours a day inside cells that sometimes have no windows, and cap the length of time prisoners can spend there."
And if [a wife] divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery. -- Jesus, according to the Gospel of Mark 10:12
Marriage is between a woman and a man; and a woman and another man; and a woman and still another man; and a woman and yet another man. But if a man shall lie down with another man and shall marry that man, or if a woman shall lie down with another woman and marry that woman, the whole fornicating lot of them will go straight to burning hell, so sayeth the Lord. -- Jesus's friend Kim, according to the Gospel of Kim 1:1-6 ...
... Welcome to Kentucky! Steven Nelson of US News: "The Kentucky county clerk facing potentially stiff penalties for refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses has been married four times, raising questions of hypocrisy and selective application of the Bible to her life. The marriages are documented in court records obtained by U.S. News, which show that Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis divorced three times, first in 1994, then 2006 and again in 2008. She gave birth to twins five months after divorcing her first husband. They were fathered by her third husband but adopted by her second. Davis worked at the clerk's office at the time of each divorce and has since remarried." Emphasis added because I couldn't help it. ...
... Clare Galofalo of TPM: "U.S. District Judge David Bunning moved swiftly Tuesday after a lesbian couple asked him to find Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis in contempt.... A hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday...."
CBS Chicago: "A manhunt is underway in far north [Chicago] suburban Fox Lake, after a police officer was shot and killed while chasing three suspects on foot.... At a late-morning news conference, Lake County Sheriff’s Det. Chris Covelli said, around 7:50 a.m., the officer radioed he was pursuing three suspects, after looking into their 'suspicious activity.'... Shortly after the news conference, Covelli confirmed that the officer died. The officer was identified as Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, a 32-year police veteran.... Covelli said police were conducting a ground and air search for three suspects — two white males and a black male."
AP: "Police officers who arrived at the wrong metro Atlanta home after a report of suspicious activity shot the man who lives there, killed his dog and 'likely' shot a fellow officer, leaving him seriously wounded, authorities said Tuesday."
AP: "A white ex-police chief agreed Tuesday to plead guilty to misconduct in office in the shooting death of an unarmed black man, a far lesser offense than the murder charge that ended in two mistrials. Prosecutors agreed to drop the murder charge against 38-year-old Richard Combs, who is the former police chief of the small town of Eutawville[, South Carolina].... Authorities say Combs shot Walter Bailey in May 2011 as he tried to arrest him on an obstruction of justice charge weeks after he argued about his daughter’s traffic ticket.... When Bailey came to talk to the police chief at Eutawville town hall about the traffic ticket, Combs was not threatened and could have stepped away, but fired his weapon anyway, hitting Bailey three times, prosecutors said."
Griff Witte & Karla Adam of the Washington Post: "Just 216 Syrian refugees have qualified for the [British] government’s official relocation program, according to data released last week. (Tube trains seat about 300.) British Prime Minister David Cameron has reassured his anxious public that the total number won’t rise above 1,000. As Germany prepares for an expected onslaught of 800,000 asylum applications just this year, the contrast between the two biggest powers in Europe couldn’t be sharper. On a continent that is supposed to be bound together by a common set of rules and values, the impact of this summer’s migrant crisis is being felt disproportionately by a handful of countries while others, such as Britain, have resisted efforts to more equitably share the burden. Britain’s approach helps explain why efforts to forge a unified European asylum policy have failed, and it could become a major obstacle to agreement when top officials gather for an emergency meeting later this month."