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• First in Fox News First: Poll shows power of message on global warming
• Those trees were being obstructionist
• Trigger warning: Disturbing domestic violence spot from Bloomberg
• Dems deploy impeachment talk in face of intensity gap
• They’re kraken up
FIRST IN FOX NEWS FIRST: POLL SHOWS POWER OF MESSAGE ON GLOBAL WARMING
The White House is pushing a new internal report today in support of the administration’s pending global warming regulations from the EPA as the agency begins the final phase before implementation. But a new survey from an industry group on the coal crackdown suggests Democrats may pay a high political price in battleground states – if opponents pick the right messages. The survey conducted for the American Energy Alliance and provided exclusively to Fox News First, asked voters in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Montana and North Carolina if they supported the EPA’s rules requiring a “30 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2030.” The group, the political arm of the industry-backed think tank, the Institute for Energy Research, found openness to the idea when described with the administration’s talking points. About 60 percent of respondents in each state approved of the notion, at least to some degree. But when presented with industry talking points, attitudes flipped completely.
[Methodology - The Winston Group surveyed 500 registered voters in each of the battleground states between July 16 and July 21]
It’s all in how you say it - Support for the new rules cratered when respondents were presented with industry data on the regulations, including that the rules would allow the president to dictate standards, cause an estimated reduction of 224,000 jobs every year until 2030 and result in an increased flow of energy to countries with low environmental standards. Support dropped dramatically in every state, most of all in Arkansas, where the percent in favor dropped 21 points when the question was re-phrased. You can bet that Republican candidates, campaigns and outside groups will be poring over these results as they find the message that will put Democrats further on defense when it comes to energy and the environment.
[“From the start, the Obama administration has not been forthright with the American public about the exorbitant costs of this rule,” said AEA President Thomas Pyle. “Unfortunately, this has become the norm for the ‘most transparent administration in history’: regulating from the shadows and deliberately hiding the consequences of their actions from the American people.”]
[Watch Fox: Correspondent Doug McKelway will follow the public hearings and have the latest on the Clean Power climate plan proposal.]
Reliability concerns - Roll Call: “Republican concerns about the potential closure of coal power plants — and questions about the nation’s electricity infrastructure — will be on display Tuesday as a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hears from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on the EPA’s proposal to regulate carbon emissions from existing power plants. Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton of Michigan and other GOP members have raised concerns that the proposal, which the administration calls the Clean Power Plan, would result in the closure of coal power plants and jeopardize grid reliability.”
[Banned here, burned elsewhere - AP: “The U.S. has the largest recoverable coal reserves in the world. Over the past six years, as the country has cut its own coal consumption by 195 million tons, about 20 percent of that coal was shipped abroad, according to an AP analysis of Energy Department data. Last year, global coal use grew by 3 percent, faster than any other fossil fuel, according to the 2014 BP Statistical Review of World Energy.”]
REPORT: JARRETT HELPED STEER OBAMACARE BAILOUTS
Senior presidential adviser Valerie Jarrett came to the rescue of health insurance companies seeking taxpayer bailouts to shore up profits under ObamaCare according to a Republican staff report by the House Oversight Committee. Daily Caller: “[According to the committee report] Chet Burrell, president and CEO of Care First Blue Cross Blue Shield, wrote personally to Jarrett in March 2014 that insurers would need taxpayer funding from Obamacare’s risk corridor program in order to cut back on substantial losses… Jarrett initially protested that the administration had already promised insurers 80 percent of what they wanted in the first place, but eventually conceded that HHS’s ‘policy team is aggressively pursuing options.’ The next month, the Obama administration issued rules that would permit taxpayer funding to be doled out to insurers through the risk corridor program, which was originally supposed to be budget neutral….”
New rule gives Fed temps instant insurance - The Hill: “Seasonal and temporary government workers could be eligible for federal health benefits based on a new rule proposed by the Office of Personnel Management. The administration is set to publish a proposed rule Tuesday to let seasonal and temporary workers sign up for the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program. Such workers aren’t eligible for the benefits now until they work at the government for one year. The change would allow workers to get the benefits immediately, even if they are working temporary or seasonal jobs. The condition is that they must expect to be employed on a full-time schedule, and work at least 90 days.”
[Watch Fox: House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller, R-Fla., will appear in the 1 p.m. ET hour.]
THOSE TREES WERE BEING OBSTRUCTIONIST
Golf Channel: “President Barack Obama played at Congressional Country Club on Saturday in Bethesda, Md., with the hosts of ESPN's “Pardon the Interruption,” Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser. It appears the Commander in Chief doesn’t fully have command of his golf ball. Pace Doherty posted this photo to Instagram on Sunday with the caption ‘Obama played at Congressional yesterday, and I just found this in the woods off one. Looks like he’s off line again. 44th.’” No word on whether the president is contemplating any executive orders to widen the fairways…
BAIER TRACKS: GEORGIA ON MY MIND AND IN MY MEMO…
“This is a less than stellar way to open up your general election campaign against your newly nominated opponent who fought his way through tough primary. The campaign of Georgia Democratic Senate nominee Michelle Nunn is scrambling after the publication of an internal campaign document that is not flattering. The memo titled ‘The Campaign Plan’ is not the way the daughter of famous Georgia Sen. Sam Nunn wants to be portrayed. Republicans jumped on it and the Nunn campaign insisted it was a leaked draft of a strategy eight months old. How much difference will it make? Who knows - but in a race that could be tight - every misstep or embarrassment seems to get magnified. We'll see.” – Bret Baier
The details - Georgia Senate hopeful Michelle Nunn campaign’s 144-page memo, revealed by National Review’s Eliana Johnson, highlights the camps’ fears moving toward November including questionable donations to a group with ties to terrorist group Hamas. The 2012 memo explains the alarm of a donation from Nunn’s former non-profit Points of Light to Islamic Relief USA, a partner of Islamic Relief Worldwide, which has been charged with funneling cash to Hamas. Because Nunn lived in the outskirts of Washington when her father was a senator, her camp is concerned that she is doesn’t have a connection with rural Georgia voters. The memo outlined a plan to target those voters with a possible post-card mail piece that stages a family photo in the “rural-oriented imagery.” Above all, the campaign’s main focus is reaching $18 to $20 million donation goal. “Hitting our targets will require us to prioritize fundraising above all else and to focus the candidate’s time on it with relentless intensity,” one said in the memo. The memo did point to one area that would not be a problem for Nunn: the media. Campaign strategists were counting on helpful reporters, including getting advance warnings on damaging stories.
[Watch Fox: Rep. Buck McKeon, R-Ca, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, will appear in the 9 a.m. ET hour.]
WITH YOUR SECOND CUP OF COFFEE...
Type A positive, B negative and O. Mosaic’s Carl Zimmer questions, “Why do we have blood types”: “Our primate ancestors were locked in a never-ending cage match with countless pathogens, including viruses, bacteria and other enemies. Some of those pathogens may have adapted to exploit different kinds of blood type antigens. The pathogens that were best suited to the most common blood type would have fared best, because they had the most hosts to infect. But, gradually, they may have destroyed that advantage by killing off their hosts. Meanwhile, primates with rarer blood types would have thrived, thanks to their protection against some of their enemies.”
Got a TIP from the RIGHT or LEFT? Email FoxNewsFirst@FOXNEWS.COM
Real Clear Politics Averages
Obama Job Approval: Approve – 42 percent//Disapprove – 54 percent
Direction of Country: Right Direction – 26 percent//Wrong Track – 63.8 percent
Generic Congressional Ballot: Democrats – 43.7 percent// Republicans 41.2 percent
TRIGGER WARNING: DISTURBING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SPOT FROM BLOOMBERG
Everytown for Gun Safety, the gun control group funded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, released a new TV ad depicting domestic violence and the cries of an endangered toddler to encourage support of a bill that would expand federal restrictions on access to firearms. The 30-second spot, prefaced with a warning, features a man forcing his way into a woman’s home while she frantically calls for help. After he grabs a boy sitting on the couch, the woman tries to fight back until he raises a gun to her face. The ad ends with the video fading to black and the sound of a gunshot. The group will air the spot in Washington, D.C., Arizona, New Hampshire and Nevada with variations tailored to focus on Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev. The ad comes ahead of a Democratic effort in the Senate this week to campaign on gun control as a women’s issue.
MCCONNELL OVERTAKES GRIMES IN BLUEGRASS POLL
Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader: “U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has edged ahead of Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes for the first time in a Bluegrass Poll, though the race for one of Kentucky's Senate seats remains a tossup. With less than 100 days until Election Day, McConnell has taken a two-point lead over Grimes — 47 percent to 45 percent — as Republicans and coal-producing regions of Kentucky coalesce around McConnell, President Barack Obama's favorable rating remains low and McConnell appears to have neutralized the gender gap…In a Bluegrass Poll released in February, Grimes was ahead of McConnell 46 percent to 42 percent. In May, pollsters added potential third-party candidates Ed Marksberry and David Patterson, but Grimes maintained a razor-thin lead of 43 percent to 42 percent.”
[In that same poll, voters say McConnell will balance protecting jobs in the coal industry and the environment from pollution, but Grimes tops the incumbent senator when it comes to creating jobs.]
ERNST HITS TRAIL AFTER TWO WEEK BREAK
After two weeks of National Guard duty, Iowa Republican Senate nominee Joni Ernst is back on the campaign trail. The Des Moines Register: “Ernst [Monday] watered down the torrent of GOP criticism of her Democratic opponent, Bruce Braley, for skipping Veterans Administration oversight hearings in Congress. ‘I’m not going to respond to whether he was MIA or AWOL. I think that's up to him to refute,’ Ernst told reporters after a campaign event highlighting veterans issues … [Concerned Veterans for America] is running an ad accusing Braley of being AWOL, which stands for ‘absent without leave’ from House veterans affairs committee meetings, including hearings on delayed care at VA hospitals. Ernst demurred when asked if the attacks were appropriate. ‘I’m not going to say whether it's appropriate or not,’ she said.”
Ducked question on nullification - The Daily Beast: “In a video obtained by The Daily Beast, Ernst said on September 13, 2013 at a forum held by the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition that Congress should not pass any laws ‘that the states would consider nullifying.’ ‘You know we have talked about this at the state legislature before, nullification. But, bottom line is, as U.S. Senator why should we be passing laws that the states are considering nullifying? Bottom line: our legislators at the federal level should not be passing those laws. We’re right…we’ve gone 200-plus years of federal legislators going against the Tenth Amendment’s states’ rights. We are way overstepping bounds as federal legislators. So, bottom line, no we should not be passing laws as federal legislators—as senators or congressman—that the states would even consider nullifying. Bottom line.’”
Dems hit Ernst on oil ties - The Des Moines Register: “In their ads, Democrats focused on oil. A new TV ad shows black-and-white images of oil field equipment and says Ernst wants to privatize Social Security and cut Medicare’s guaranteed benefits, ‘all to pay for more tax breaks for oil billionaires’ like [brothers David and Charles Koch], two conservative businessmen. The ad, called ‘Follow It,’ is being paid for by the Senate Majority PAC, a Democratic group whose top funders include billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer and billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg. … A radio ad released Monday accuses Ernst of having ‘oily palms’ because of a ‘ritzy Washington, D.C., fundraiser’ scheduled for Wednesday. The conservative Value In Electing Women Political Action Committee, VIEW PAC, is hosting a fundraiser for Ernst.”
ALEXANDER SPENDING SURGE
Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times Free Press: “Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander's campaign spent $1.34 million in the first 18 days of July as the incumbent ramped up his GOP primary effort in advance of early voting in Tennessee, his disclosure shows. The two-term senator reported to the Senate Secretary's Office of Public Records that he still had $2.19 million in cash on hand as of July 18. Alexander received $129,138 in contributions…. Alexander faces state Rep. Joe Carr, R-Lascassas, and Memphis physician and radio station owner George Flinn in the Aug. 7 Republican primary…. Carr and Flinn have demanded Alexander debate him, but the senator has effectively said no.”
[Alexander’s campaign claims the incumbent leads Carr by 32 points, according to an internal poll.]
Group touts Alexander as ‘conservative leader’ in new ad - A conservative group Citizens for a Responsible Energy Solution launched a TV ad promoting Sen. Lamar Alexander as a “conservative leader.” The 30 second spot says Alexander is “working to improve our nation, strengthening our borders and making America less reliant on foreign energy.” The $257,000 ad buy will air in Nashville, Tenn., and Knoxville, Tenn., until the Aug. 7 primary.
DEMS DEPLOY IMPEACHMENT TALK IN FACE OF INTENSITY GAP
Democrats have retaken a narrow lead in the generic congressional ballot for this fall’s midterm elections, but continue to trail Republicans in voter intensity. A new Fox News poll says that 43 percent of registered voters would cast their ballot for the Democratic candidate in their House district, 41 percent for the Republican. In early June Republicans held a 4-point advantage, the sixth lead change this year. As Fox News pollster nonpareil Dana Blantonputs it: “You get the picture: there’s lots of uncertainty and bouncing around. It’s just too soon to tell if there’s going to be a wave election, even though some political junkies can’t help from speculating about it. One thing that has been consistent for the last several months is the greater level interest in the upcoming elections among Republicans -- and that holds true again in the new poll. By a 14-point margin, more Republicans (70 percent) than Democrats (56 percent) are extremely or very interested in the election. Last month Republicans were more interested by 12 points. Among just those interested voters, this month’s generic ballot results show the Republican candidate with a seven-point edge over the Democrat (47-40 percent).” So if you wondered why Democrats are making desperations plays like talking up the impeachment of the president, now you know.
Grody to the max, dude - “It’s a little cynical maybe to talk about your own impeachment in order to try to save the United States Senate majority. And I am reminded, and I’m sure you are too about the birth certificate mugs. Remember when Donald Trump made the president show his birth certificate and then [Democrats] fundraised off of it and sold mugs and they talked about it all the time? You know, it’s grody, but politics is a pretty grody business, I guess.” –Chris Stirewalt discussing top Dems fundraising off exaggerated calls of impeachment with Megyn Kelly on “The Kelly File” Watch full interview here.
PICK SIX… OR HALF THAT
We have seen a surge of Fox News First readers sending in which six seats Republicans could pick up to win back control of the Senate from Democrats this past week. So which seats do readers think are most likely to flip from blue to red? The current consensus is Arkansas (13.5%), Louisiana (11.9%), (and just one vote behind) Montana (11.8%), West Virginia (11.1%), South Dakota (10.3%) and North Carolina (10.1%). Fox News First reader Joe thinks the GOP may only pick up 3 seats this fall. “I think the [President Obama] social media gang has this all figured out from a voters perspective. We’ll see another set of results similar to what Obama did to get re-elected.”
Share your top six picks. Email them – just your top six, please – to FOXNEWSFIRST@FOXNEWS.COM or tweet @cstirewalt.
[Watch Fox: Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, will appear in the 2 p.m. ET hour.]
POLL: PERRY SUPPORT DOUBLES SINCE BORDER CRISIS
“The race for the GOP nomination remains splintered, although Texas Gov. Rick Perry has made noticeable gains after receiving significant news coverage during the current immigration crisis[according to a new Fox News poll]. Four potential GOP candidates receive double-digit backing among self-identified Republicans: former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Gov. Perry each garner 12 percent, while Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul comes in at 11 percent and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie follows at 10 percent. Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz each capture nine percent….There are no surprises on the other side, as former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton remains the clear frontrunner among self-identified Democrats. She captures 64 percent to Vice President Joe Biden’s 12 percent. In April, Clinton was at 69 percent and Biden 14 percent….The poll finds Clinton would top Christie by 10 points, Paul by 11 points and Bush by 13 points, if the 2016 presidential election were held today.”
[Perry boosts Brown on border - NH Journal: “Perry, who is seriously considering a second run for the White House, will join [New Hampshire] Republican Party [Chairwoman] Jennifer Horn on a media conference [call today] to discuss, the NHGOP says, “the failed Obama-Shaheen border security policies.”]
CHRISTIE VOWS MORE CASH TO COME FOR RAUNER
Republican Governors Association Chairman Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J., delivered a $2.5 million check to Illinois Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner and “promised more to come,” according to The Chicago Tribune. Rauner has a slight lead over Gov. Pat Quinn, D-Ill., in the polls.
RAND ROLLS OUT THREE-DAY IOWA SWING
S en. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has released the schedule for his presidential campaign-style swing through Iowa next week. The Republican 2016 frontrunner will attend a trio of fundraisers and visit top Iowa City GOP victory centers. Paul plans to stump for Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa and fellow ophthalmologist Mariannette Miller-Meeks. Paul will also attend a GOP fundraiser in Clear Lake, Iowa. During his visit Paul will make stops in key Hawkeye cities including Sioux City, Iowa City, Davenport, Des Moines, and Cedar Rapids.
GROUP STARTS SPENDING ON CAMPAIGN FINANCE REGS
NYT: “[A familiar] alliance of liberal intellectuals, big donors and [former] Republican strategists has hit on a solution to the influence of big money in politics: even more money. Starting Monday, the recently formed Mayday ‘super PAC’ began a $12 million advertising campaign to help elect lawmakers of both parties who support [new campaign finance regulations.] … As for the contrast between the group’s message and financing, [a Mayday PAC founder] has adopted a slogan: ‘Embrace the irony.’”
THEY’RE KRAKEN UP
The (Massachusetts) Republican: “While tales of sea monsters have been part of folklore for centuries, a Holyoke [Mass.] couple intends to make sea-dwelling creatures apart of their daily lives. The couple seeks to adopt 'Seamonster' as a middle name for both of them. Melanie Ann Convery filed a petition with the Commonwealth requesting that she and her husband, Neal James Coughlin, be allowed to change their names to the following: Melanie Seamonster Convery and Neal James Seamonster Coughlin. Why the change of name? Convery declined to say. ‘Despite our crazy/flashy new middle names, my husband and I are pretty private,’ Convery said on Twitter. As is required by Massachusetts law, the couple’s intended new name was published in a legal notice. Convery joked about notice, which was published in The Holyoke Sun on Friday, July 18. ‘I thought posting our legal name change in the Holyoke Sun might mean no one would read it. Turns out grandmas like reading legal notices.’ Their petition will be heard at the Hampden Probate and Family Court in Springfield on Wednesday. Any who object to the name change must file a written appearance with the court by 10 a.m. [today].”
AND NOW A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“[Secretary of State John Kerry] goes over and … hands Israel a proposition that is so outrageous that the cabinet votes 19-0 against it. Israeli cabinets have never voted 19-0 on whether the sun rises in the east. It was unbelievable. It would have given Hamas all of its demands.” –Charles Krauthammer on “Special Report with Bret Baier” Watch here.
Chris Stirewalt is digital politics editor for Fox News. Want FOX News First in your inbox every day? Sign up here.
Chris Stirewalt joined Fox News Channel (FNC) in July of 2010 and serves as digital politics editor based in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he authors the daily "Fox News First” political news note and hosts “Power Play,” a feature video series, on FoxNews.com. Stirewalt makes frequent appearances on the network, including "The Kelly File," "Special Report with Bret Baier," and "Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace.” He also provides expert political analysis for Fox News coverage of state, congressional and presidential elections.