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• Hillary’s email line crumbles
• Trump seals the deal
• Bernie supporters: Clinton has ‘blood on her hands’
• Senate race in the Keystone State heats up
• Baaaaah, they got the munchies
HILLARY’S EMAIL LINE CRUMBLES
It was okay and everyone else was doing it, Hillary Clinton’s often repeated defense of her private email set-up, has a problem. And a State Department audit seems to agree.
In true Clintonian fashion her campaign is sticking with that defense in rebutting a State Department watchdog group’s audit released Wednesday that said the former secretary “did not comply with the Department’s policies” in using a private server. The audit also said that had the Department known about the server they would not have given its blessing because of “security risks in doing so.”
Whether or not security was compromised remains to be seen. Clinton’s FAQ’s page claims there wasn’t a breach, but the hacker known as “Guccifer,” who was indicted on Wednesday for other identity theft charges, claims he did access Clinton’s private server, though he has refused to provide evidence of such a hack. The State Department audit did not find specific evidence of a breach, but notes that the Clintons’ outside I.T. consultant twice shut down her home-based server because he feared that someone was trying to hack the system.
While a separate FBI investigation continues to loom over Clinton, the fallout from the report is likely to send Clinton’s already poor numbers on honesty and trustworthiness down even further as she fights a two-front war with Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Bernie Sanders.
The audit’s findings play right into Trump’s repeated characterization of “Crooked Hillary” and makes Sanders’ backers even more infuriated with her in a nominating process they already feel is corrupt.
All the while, Clinton has continued to cast a narrative of the scandal as a Republican witch hunt designed to cast her candidacy in a bad light. As WaPo’s Chris Cillizza points out, “That’s a very hard story to sell, given that the current inspector general was appointed by President Obama.”
Short of an indictment this is about as bad as things have yet to get in Hillaryland. And though few are questioning her security of the nomination, how she maneuvers her way out of this will be very telling of the general election back-and-forth yet to come.
WITH YOUR SECOND CUP OF COFFEE…
On this date in 1897, Irish writer Bram Stoker gave Londoners their first look at a dark pager turner about a vampire who made his way from Transylvania to England. History.com: “Stoker had originally named the vampire ‘Count Wampyr.’… Upon its release, Dracula enjoyed moderate success, though when Stoker died in 1912 none of his obituaries even mentioned Dracula by name. Sales began to take off in the 1920s, when the novel was adapted for Broadway. Dracula mania kicked into even higher gear with Universal’s blockbuster 1931 film, directed by Tod Browning and starring the Hungarian actor Bela Lugosi. Dozens of vampire-themed movies, television shows and literature followed, though Lugosi, with his exotic accent, remains the quintessential Count Dracula.”
Got a TIP from the RIGHT or the LEFT?
Real Clear Politics Averages
General Election: Clinton vs. Trump: Trump +0.2 points
Generic congressional vote: Democrats +2.2
TRUMP SEALS THE DEAL
AP: “Donald Trump on Thursday reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign. Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party’s unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the convention. Among them is Oklahoma GOP chairwoman Pam Pollard… It takes 1,237 delegates to win the Republican nomination for president. Trump has reached 1,238. With 303 delegates at stake in five state primaries on June 7, Trump will easily pad his total, avoiding a contested convention in Cleveland in July.”
Trump to lay out energy platform amid contradictions - NYT: “Donald J. Trump will head to the heart of America’s oil and gas boom on Thursday to unveil details of his policies on energy and the environment. 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. Mr. Trump has backed some energy policies, such as requiring more ethanol production, that are widely criticized by energy experts. He has made contradictory remarks on alternative energy sources, such as wind and solar. And he has made pledges — for example, to restore lost jobs in coal mining — that essentially defy free-market forces.”
UAW endorses Hillary for ‘unity’ - Detroit Free Press: “UAW President Dennis Williams endorsed Hillary Clinton today after surveying members and observing that the former Secretary of State is within 100 delegates of clinching the nomination. While he called Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders ‘a great friend of the UAW,’ he told MSNBC ‘Hardball’ host Chris Matthews, ‘It’s about time for unity. We’re endorsing Hillary Clinton. She’s gotten 3 million more votes than Bernie, a million more votes than Donald Trump. She’s our nominee.’”
Bernie supporters: Clinton has ‘blood on her hands’ - WashEx: “Supporters of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders protested against Hillary Clinton in California where the Democratic front-runner was campaigning Wednesday. ‘Blood is on her hands,’ chanted the protesters, who held signs that critical of Clinton. The line has been used against Clinton in the past, including to direct blame on the former secretary of state for military coups in Latin America and for the deaths of four Americans who were killed in the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.”
Bernie says yes to legalized marijuana in Calif. swing - Bloomberg: “Bernie Sanders is turning to marijuana to bolster his credentials in California ahead of the crucial Democratic primary there. The Vermont senator told a rally in beach-front Santa Monica that he would vote yes on an initiative proposed for the November ballot in the state that would legalize the drug. In Riverside, he told more than a thousand people that the 40-year U.S. war on drugs has been unfairly targeted minorities…”
THE JUDGE’S RULING: THE SERIOUSNESS OF LAWYERS’ LIES
Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano describes several instances when government officials and attorneys lied to judges during legal cases or investigations: “The problem of lawyers lying to judges is extremely serious. Our system of litigation -- lawyers present facts and argue about laws, and judges rely on the truthfulness of what the lawyers have told them -- is built on trust. Because lawyers know the facts in their cases more intimately than judges do, judges rely on lawyers to tell them the truth.”
SENATE RACE IN THE KEYSTONE STATE HEATS UP
Pro-GOP group Freedom Partners Action Fund announced a $3 million ad buy in Pennsylvania slamming Democratic candidate Katie McGinty for using her public influence for personal profit. The ad out today claims McGinty steered millions of dollars in subsidies to favorite groups with serving in the Department of Environmental Protection. This is the first ad buy from Freedom Partners Action Fund in the Pennsylvania Senate race.
Trump, Bernie agree to debate if network donates to charity - Daily Beast
Va. Gov. Terry McAullife, Chinese businessman relationship details - Time
Trump political director leaves after six weeks - USA Today
Libertarian Party sees spike in registration - The Hill
Transgendered bathroom fight ramps up - Fox News
“[Trump] is going to build a wall. That is a core thing with him…He will push it strongly, and he will push for the immigration changes just as strongly.” -- Paul Manafort in an interview with the HuffPo on what to expect from Trump’s presidency
BAAAAAH, THEY GOT THE MUNCHIES
Daily Mirror: “The remains of an illegal cannabis factory was fly-tipped on a Welsh village road - and worried locals think the sheep have been chowing down on the psychotropic herbs. County councillor Ioan Richard said sheep have been ‘roaming the village’ and causing havoc by breaking into homes and getting killed by cars as they stumble about in what appears to be a druggy haze…. ‘They are getting in peoples gardens and one even entered a bungalow and left a mess in the bedroom.’ And he warned of the dangers of the rest of the flock discovering the remains of the cannabis plantation dumped at Rhydypandy in the Swansea valley in South Wales.”
AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“I think [attacking New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez] is not a terribly smart move and it does show people, particularly Republicans who are coming on board the Trump train, that the idea that they are going to contain or sort of soften the edges of Trump if they surround him and influence him is something of a pipe dream.” – Charles Krauthammer on “Special Report with Bret Baier.”
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.