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On the roster: Obama jabs Trump in final UN address - Trump: U.S. military ‘gang that couldn’t shoot straight’ - Turnout terrors for team Clinton - Audible: Sweet ride, bro - Muscles and olive oil
OBAMA JABS TRUMP IN FINAL UN ADDRESS
Fox News: “President Obama, in his final address as president before the U.N. General Assembly, called Tuesday for more global cooperation especially in helping refugees from war-torn countries – while making only passing reference to the Islamic State and the ever-expanding scourge of like-minded terror groups. The president called for a ‘course correction’ for globalization to ensure nations don't retreat into a more sharply divided world, while pushing back against an isolationist approach gaining popularity in many countries. He advocated for open democracies and open economies, while railing against the example set by Russia and calling for more tolerance in all nations. He also took what appeared to be a jab at Donald Trump, saying: ‘The world is too small for us to simply be able to build a wall’ and prevent extremism from affecting societies. With that message in hand, Obama urged nations to ‘follow through even when the politics are hard,’ in helping refugees fleeing conflict.”
TRUMP: U.S. MILITARY ‘GANG THAT COULDN’T SHOOT STRAIGHT’
Donald Trump took American forces in Syria to task, calling the U.S. military “the gang that couldn’t shoot straight” over an airstrike on ISIS targets that also mistakenly killed a number of Syrian troops. In an interview Bill O’Reilly, Trump seemingly sided with the Kremlin on what has become a hot-button issue for U.S.-Russia relations, lamenting that “Russia is absolutely furious at us.” The strike marked the first known U.S. action against Putin-backed Syrian dictator Bashar Assad’s troops.
FIRST PRESIDENT BUSH SAID TO BE VOTING AGAINST TRUMP
Baltimore Sun: “Former Maryland Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend said in a social media post on Monday that former President George H. W. Bush told her he is planning to break with his party to support Democrat Hillary Clinton in November. ‘The President told me he’s voting for Hillary!!’ Kennedy Townsend, a Democrat and the eldest daughter of Robert F. Kennedy, wrote on Facebook under a picture of her shaking the president’s hand. The post appears to have been removed since Politico first reported about it on Monday night. Asked by The Baltimore Sun to confirm the exchange on Tuesday, Kennedy Townsend emailed back a single sentence: ‘What was said was said.’ …Jim McGrath, a spokesman for Bush, said in a statement that the president is not commenting on the race. ‘The vote President Bush will cast as a private citizen in some 50 days will be just that: a private vote cast in some 50 days,’ he said.”
Trump praises Christie despite new scandal claims - Donald Trump is sticking by Gov. Chris Christie even in light of allegations the New Jersey governor knew of the lane closures on the George Washington Bridge. At Monday’s trial of two former members of Christie’s administration, prosecutors rejected Christies public claim that he had been in the dark about the retributive snarling of traffic for the town of Fort Lee, N.J. -- a punishment for a mayor who refused to endorse Christie’s reelection in 2013. Trump, who had previously accused Christie of lying about his ignorance, made a statement to the NYT about Christie who is now leading Trump’s transition team. “After [Christie’s] recent run for president, he called me to say that he would like to endorse me in that he sees a movement like he has never seen before,” Trump told the paper, “I was greatly honored, accepted his endorsement, and he has been a spectacular advocate ever since.”
THE RULEBOOK: IT’S ‘WE THE PEOPLE’ FOR A REASON
“The adversaries of the Constitution seem to have lost sight of the people altogether in their reasonings on [state vs. federal government]; and to have viewed these different establishments, not only as mutual rivals and enemies, but as uncontrolled by any common superior in their efforts to usurp the authorities of each other. These gentlemen must here be reminded of their error. They must be told that the ultimate authority, wherever the derivative may be found, resides in the people alone…” – James Madison, “Federalist No. 46”
TIME OUT: BIRD BRAIN
Discover Magazine: “Birds are rapidly building their reputation as a brainy bunch, and the latest credit goes to four pigeons who can visually recognize written words. These pigeons were living in a lab in New Zealand where, over a span of two years, they learned to distinguish four-letter English words from nonsense words. For their training, a computer screen would flash words like ‘DOWN’ or ‘GAME,’ and non-words like ‘TWOR’ or ‘NELD,’ along with a star symbol. Each time the pigeons made a correct identification — pecking the word if it was a real one, or pecking the star symbol beneath a non-word — they were rewarded with a portion of wheat.”
Flag on the play? - Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM with your tips, comments or questions
Average of national head-to-head presidential polls: Clinton vs. Trump: Clinton +2.4 points
[Polls included: Fox News, NYT/CBS News, Quinnipiac University, WaPo/ABC News, and CNN.]
Average of national four-way presidential polls: Clinton vs. Trump vs. Johnson vs. Stein: Clinton +1.2 points
[Polls included: Fox News, NYT/CBS News, Quinnipiac University, WaPo/ABC News, and CNN]
TURNOUT TERRORS FOR TEAM CLINTON
Philip Bump explains that even though Hillary Clinton has enjoyed a fairly consistent lead throughout this cycle she still faces the problem of getting her voters out to the polls. WaPo: “Hispanics turnout in presidential elections at about the rate whites turn out in off-year races. Only in 2012 and 2016 did black voters turn out at the same levels as white voters. That discrepancy is one reason that Republicans have recently fared better in non-presidential election years. But it's notentirely in line with that trend, particularly given the fluctuations you see above. If college-educated women (who like Clinton) decide to stay home and white men without degrees (who love Trump) don't, that changes things, even if white voters overall are about the same percent of the electorate.”
Reddit post on Hillary’s server being investigated - The Hill: “The House Oversight Committee is reviewing a Reddit post that alleges an IT specialist who worked on Hillary Clinton’s private server sought advice on how to alter the contents of ‘VERY VIP’ emails, according to Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.). Meadows is the chairman of the panel’s Government Operations subcommittee. ‘The Reddit post issue and its connection to Paul Combetta is currently being reviewed by OGR staff and evaluations are being made as to the authenticity of the post,’ Meadows told The Hill. Reddit users appear to have uncovered a two-year-old post from an account believed to belong to Combetta, an engineer with Platte River Networks. The Denver, Colo.-based firm managed Clinton’s private server.”
AUDIBLE: SWEET RIDE, BRO
“[Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C. is] a workhorse, not a show horse. If you don’t believe me go look at his car. Which is a piece of crap.” – Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., in an interview with Politico about the complaint that Burr has been listless in his reelection bid.
Trump pumps pressure on Holt, other debate moderators - WashEx
Holt offers vague outline on debate topics - The Hill
New Ga. poll: Trump leads narrowly, GOP romps in Senate race - Monmouth University
Adelson to spend $45 million to help Trump, down ballot races - The Hill
Trump used charitable foundation funds to settle business lawsuits - WaPo
Ryan meets with Ivanka Trump in New York - WashEx
Donald Trump Jr. posts about Skittles to explain Syrian refugee problem - USA Today
Will Hillary ditch the Iowa caucus as president? - WashEx
Dissident House Republicans refusing to pay dues over party’s alleged moderate slant - Politico
Ever wanted to know how pollsters do their thing? Here’s a great look at the sausage making - NYT
FROM THE BLEACHERS
“I watched ‘I’ll Tell You What’ [Sunday] and loved it. The tranquilized zoo animal described what I had wanted to say perfectly. Y’all keep up the excellent work.” – Lou McNeal, Pineville, La.
[Ed. note: I couldn’t imagine a nicer thing to have heard about our debut! One of the most fatiguing things about this election is the absolute fatalism you hear on both sides. You get the idea that whatever happens, this will be the last election ever. I think I can speak for Dana when I say that neither of us feels that way. This country is bigger and better than its politics and we will endure this dreadful election as we have endured dreadful elections of the past. Americans, the plucky mutts who have made this nation the last best hope of earth, will keep on keeping on. Thank you for watching and your kind note.]
“Ain’t hard to find a program that is informative. Nor is it hard to find a program that entertains. But to find a program that both informs and entertains, now that is a rare gem. Hate the 5:00 PM time slot but I guess that’s why the Good Lord gave us DVR. Congratulations on the new show!” – Steve Bartlett, Greenville, S.C.
[Ed. note: Mr. Bartlett, I have heard it said that ‘it’s always 5:00o’clock somewhere.’ And thanks to your DVR, that has a whole new meaning. Thanks so much for watching and for the kind words. For those who may have missed it, but be sure to join us Sundays through Nov. 18 at 5 p.m. ET on Fox News Channel. And don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast here.]
“The media has certainly ‘moved on’ as far as Hillary’s health is concerned, but I for one have not. She obviously has some serious problems she is concealing and it is the media’s responsibility to bring them to light. Unlike everything else she manages to lie about and sweep under the rug, this is something the public needs to know the truth about immediately.” – Sandra Johnston, Anacortes, Wash.
[Ed. note: Other than tackling her to take her temperature, what could reporters really do? This is one of those areas in which even the most determined reporter is at the mercy of the candidate and his or her campaign. Neither candidate has produced anything that would meet the definition of their “full medical records,” but rather what amount to doctors’ notes giving them permission to serve as president. Clinton certainly has left the door open to more speculation because of her dishonesty surrounding her Sept. 11 collapse, but what’s a reporter to do?]
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MUSCLES AND OLIVE OIL
WJAR: “A dramatic rescue along the shore in Narragansett [Rhode Island] Saturday afternoon of a man who got stuck between the rocks on a jetty…Firefighters say the man was here with one other person when he dropped his phone. When he bent down to pick it up he got himself stuck all the way up to his chest. They knew they had to get him about before the tide came in. Officials say finally after about two and a half hours they were able to free him with an outside the box approach. They used olive oil…Firefighters say the man went to a nearby hospital to be treated for hypothermia and a small injury he suffered on his foot while walking away.”
AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“In other words, the war on terror is a war on narratives, is a war of ideas, hearts and minds. Yes, however, hearts and minds are swayed by what’s going on the ground.” – Charles Krauthammer on “Special Report with Bret Baier” reacting to the Obama administration’s position that the war against ISIS is a “narrative fight.”
Chris Stirewalt is digital politics editor for Fox News. Sally Persons contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report 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.