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· Trump gets his bump while Hillary loses ground
· Trump’s corporate tax troubles not so secret
· Kentucky county’s message for Hillary
· The Judge’s Ruling: Rhodes scholarship
· The balloons make it romantic
TRUMP GETS HIS BUMP WHILE HILLARY LOSES GROUND
Donald Trump continues to do about as well as his predecessor from four years ago. But Hillary Clinton is missing the mark. Badly.
As Mitt Romney locked up the Republican nomination after 14 weeks of contests, he saw his ratings rise as Republican rallied behind their standard bearer, giving him a 4-point bounce and bringing the race against President Obama into a tie.
In the latest Fox News poll, Trump got exactly the same 4-point boost out of his primary victory after his 13-week battle. But Trump swung from a 7-point deficit to a 3-point lead in a head-to-head matchup with Hillary Clinton.
The difference, of course, is that Democrats were solidly behind Obama but far less united for Clinton. Clinton’s numbers fell 6 points from last month, while at the same point four years ago, Obama was holding steady.
And that’s still true today. Just 74 percent of Democrats expressed a favorable view of Clinton compared to 89 percent for Obama.
Team Clinton is betting on the fact that the prospect of a Trump presidency will be enough to unite Democrats and retake the lead. And surely, the remaining 25 weeks until the election will give Democrats a good chance to get together.
But While Trump taking the lead in the early going may chasten some Democrats, it also adds to a narrative that says Clinton is a loser. She lost in 2008, she has continued to struggle with a long-shot challenger in primaries and now is suddenly trailing Trump.
Voter psychology can be hard to decipher, but we do know that there is a general distaste for supporting losing candidates and a preference for being on the winning team. Trump proved that in the primary contests.
With a lull in the primary calendar, Clinton has one more chance to try to unite her party: The suite of contests on June 7. She’s favored to win big in California and New Jersey, but would be well served by placing an exclamation point, rather than an ellipsis, on her primary victories.
Waiting until the Democratic National Convention invites the hardening of that “loser” narrative. She needs to get Democrats together sooner than that.
It may be harder for Clinton to get a post-primary bump than it was for Trump given the long, long years of Democrats’ familiarity with her, but she’s going to need to find a way to make it happen.
WITH YOUR SECOND CUP OF COFFEE…
Vanity Fair recounts how Ernest Hemingway’s stalled writing career took off on his annual trip to Spain: “‘Let the pressure build,’ he had told himself. ‘When I had to write [a novel], then it would be the only thing to do and there would be no choice.’ He had now reached that point. Just when the pressure surrounding him as a virtually unknown writer had built to an almost intolerable level—financial woes, living with Hadley in squalor, fears of obscurity, excruciating writer’s block—Lady Duff Twysden had saved the day. As Hemingway watched her at the fiesta—a jezebel in Arcadia, manipulating her suitors like marionettes—he knew that he had figured out the puzzle at last. A story began to shape itself in Hemingway’s mind—the intense, poignant story that, in short order, would become The Sun Also Rises.”
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Real Clear Politics Averages
General Election: Clinton vs. Trump: Clinton +5.2 points
Generic Congressional Vote: Democrats +2.3
TRUMP’S CORPORATE TAX TROUBLES NOT SO SECRET
USA Today: “While Donald J. Trump refuses to release his federal tax returns, saying his tax rate is ‘none of your business,’ a USA TODAY analysis found Trump’s businesses have been involved in at least 100 lawsuits and other disputes related to unpaid taxes or how much tax his businesses owe. Trump’s companies have been engaged in battles over taxes almost every year from the late 1980s until as recently as March, the analysis of court cases, property records, and other documents across the country shows. At least five Trump companies were issued warrants totaling more than $13,000 for late or unpaid taxes in New York state just since Trump declared his candidacy in June 2015, according to state records.”
Sasse: u mad bro? - WashEx: “Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse denied Donald Trump’s claim Wednesday that the Republican senator has ‘hatred’ for the likely GOP presidential nominee. ‘I do not hate you. I simply asked you some actual questions,’ Sasse, a first-term senator, tweeted in response to Trump’s interview on Fox News.”
KENTUCKY COUNTY’S MESSAGE FOR HILLARY
The Nation: “Elliott County is emblematic of the challenges, and the opportunities, that Clinton faces as the clear front runner for the Democratic nomination. The county has voted Democratic in each presidential election since it was formed in the mid-19th century… Elliott County chose Sanders over Clinton by a wide margin [Tuesday]…Where Clinton swept rural Kentucky in the 2008 primary, she struggled in 2016. In a number of coal-country counties, the front runner secured less than a third of the vote…Clinton would do well to consider the results from Elliott County: not as a primary defeat but as a November challenge to renew the emphasis on FDR that initially framed her candidacy—and to borrow some more of the New Deal passion that Bernie Sanders has brought to the 2016 race.”
David Drucker delves deeper into Trump’s financial deal with the RNC - WashEx
A.B. Culvahouse, who vetted Sarah Palin for John McCain, joins Trump veep search - The Hill
Trump invokes rape allegation against Bill Clinton - USA Today
What would Trump’s immigration plan look like in practice? - NYT
Larry Sabato says Trump would be better off picking a safe VP - UVA
Robert Kagan offers a dire, unsparing warning -WaPo
Q Poll: In New Jersey, Hillary burning Sanders in primary, thumping Trump in general. - Quinnipiac University
Biden says he’s ‘confident’ Bernie will support Hillary - ABC News
THE JUDGE’S RULING: RHODES SCHOLARSHIP
Fox News’ Senior Judicial Analyst Andrew Napolitano says that Obama national security adviser Ben Rhodes’ NYT interview in which he bragged about manipulating naïve journalists waives his claims of privilege, which Rhodes used to avoid giving congressional testimony on the Iran deal: “One cannot selectively assert executive privilege. Items are either privileged or not, and a privilege, once voluntarily lifted, cannot thereafter successfully be asserted.”
THE BALLOONS MAKE IT ROMANTIC
The Guardian: “In what may rank as one of the least romantic wedding nights in history, a Chinese couple reportedly spent their first night of marital bliss transcribing the Communist party’s 17,000-word constitution as part of a campaign designed to shore up support for President Xi Jinping’s administration. Photographs posted on social media showed the newlyweds – both civil servants from the eastern province of Jiangxi – perching next to a balloon-covered double bed as they copied out parts of the 11-chapter text. Li Yunpeng and his bride, Chen Xuanchi, saw the task as a way of creating ‘beautiful memories’ of their wedding night, their employer, the Nanchang railway bureau, wrote in an online message.”
AND NOW A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“[Trump’s released list of Supreme Court justice picks] allows some conservatives held back to come out and support him and say ‘now I’m not worried so much about the Supreme Court.’ And I think that’s going to be a very important step. It starts this sort of cascade of who’s going to come out and support Trump. And once it starts, it’s not going to stop.” – Charles Krauthammer on “Special Report with Bret Baier” Watch here.
Chris Stirewalt is digital politics editor for Fox News. Sally Persons contributed to this report. 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 politics editor based in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he authors the daily Fox News Halftime Report political news note and co-hosts the hit podcast, Perino & Stirewalt: I'll Tell You What. He also is the host of Power Play, a feature video series on FoxNews.com. Stirewalt makes frequent appearances on network programs, including America’s Newsroom, Special Report with Bret Baier and Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace. He also provides expert political analysis for FNC’s coverage of state, congressional and presidential elections.