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On the roster: Breaking: House hammers hard-line immigration bill - Big bucks keep pouring in for RNC - Senate spurns Trump’s symbolic deficit move - The Judge’s Ruling: First duties - They call him the vaper vapor
BREAKING: HOUSE HAMMERS HARD-LINE IMMIGRATION BILL
Fox News: “An immigration overhaul backed by conservatives failed in the House on Thursday, as GOP leaders abruptly delayed a vote on a compromise measure amid party divisions. While the conservative version was expected to fail, House leaders were hoping the separate compromise measure might have a chance. But tensions are running high over the debate on family separations at the border. President Trump's sudden executive action over the border crisis stemmed some of the urgency for Congress to act. But House GOP leaders still were pulling out the stops to bring reluctant Republicans on board in hopes of resolving broader immigration issues ahead of the November midterm election. That vote is now set for Friday. Passage of the bill was always a long shot, but failure may now come at a steeper price as Republicans -- and Trump -- have raised expectations that, as the party in control of Congress and the White House, they can fix the nation's long-standing immigration problems. ‘This is a bill that has consensus. This is a bill that the president supports. It's a bill that could become law,’ said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.”
Ryan ruptures with Freedom Caucus - WaPo: “A House immigration bill meticulously negotiated by Republicans appeared to be on the brink of failure ahead of a planned Thursday vote after House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) and a top conservative leader engaged in an unusually heated floor confrontation Wednesday. Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) argued with Ryan in plain view of lawmakers, aides and reporters during a Wednesday afternoon vote — a dispute that Meadows later confirmed surrounded the immigration votes scheduled for Thursday. The typically mild-mannered Meadows could be seen repeating ‘it doesn’t matter’ as Ryan spoke to him, and he walked away from Ryan at one point only to return and continue arguing. Speaking to reporters afterward, Meadows accused Ryan and other House leaders of a bait-and-switch — agreeing to a deal on what would be contained in the compromise legislation only to leave key provisions out of the final text.”
Trump continued to blame Democrats during cabinet meeting - CBS News: “President Trump continued to blame Democrats for not wanting to solve the nation's outstanding immigration problems, in light of his executive order changing the policy on separating children from immigrant families who cross the southern border illegally. … He added that Democrats are responsible for a ‘massive child-smuggling industry’ and are not providing enough resources to combat the issue of housing migrant children. … Meanwhile, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney announced during the meeting that the administration would be spearheading a massive reorganization of the federal government. Mulvaney said the move fulfills the president's promise to ‘drain the swamp’ in Washington. ‘It's been almost 100 years since anybody has reorganized the government on this scale,’ Mulvaney said. He used food metaphors to slam the ‘byzantine’ nature of the way the government currently regulates, calling the process ‘stupid’ and ‘makes no sense.’
Melania visits child detention center in Texas - Fox News: “First lady Melania Trump on Thursday visited a child detention center in Texas that houses minors who entered the country illegally -- in the wake of her husband’s executive order that ended the practice of separating families. Mrs. Trump visited the Upbring New Hope Children’s Center, after she was reported to have been a force in getting the president to act in the wake of a days-long controversy surrounding the effects of the Department of Justice’s ‘zero tolerance’ policy. The first lady said earlier through her spokeswoman that she ‘hates’ to see families separated at the border. ‘We all know they are here without their families and I want to thank you for your hard work, compassion and kindness you are giving them in these difficult times,’ Mrs. Trump told a roundtable of workers at the Texas center.”
THE RULEBOOK: AND SEE HOW THAT TURNED OUT
“The Congress which conducted us through the Revolution was a less numerous body than their successors will be; they were not chosen by, nor responsible to, their fellow citizens at large; though appointed from year to year, and recallable at pleasure, they were generally continued for three years, and prior to the ratification of the federal articles, for a still longer term.” – Alexander Hamilton or James Madison, Federalist No. 55
TIME OUT: BEYOND THE PAGE
Atlantic: “Why do some books make us want to know an author personally, identifying so thoroughly with the public work that we try to lay claim to the private self? In a conversation for this series, the writer A.M. Homes explored her own relationship to [J.D. Salinger]—the strange coincidences tying his work to her life, her brief, disappointing brush with the real-life author, and how she ultimately learned to let him go. We discussed how the Salinger story ‘For Esmé—With Love and Squalor’ celebrates missed connections, reminding us that even brief, glancing encounters can be enough to change a person for the better. In Homes’s view, the relationship depicted in the story is a good model for the one between writer and reader: a pure association that redeems without grasping toward the messiness of everyday life. ‘For Esmé’ helped to inspire ‘The National Cage Bird Show,’ a story in Homes’s new collection, Days of Awe. Like Salinger’s original, the story features a shell-shocked soldier and a troubled teenager who forge an unlikely, fleeting bond…”
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Trump job performance
Average approval: 42.8 percent
Average disapproval: 51.8 percent
Net Score: -9 points
Change from one week ago: up 2.4 points
[Average includes: Quinnipiac University: 43% approve - 52% disapprove; USA Today/Suffolk University: 43% approve - 51% disapprove; CNN: 41% approve - 54% disapprove; CBS News: 42% approve - 52% disapprove; Gallup: 45% approve - 50% disapprove.]
Control of House
Republican average: 41.6 percent
Democratic average: 48.6 percent
Advantage: Democrats plus 7 points
Change from one week ago: Democratic advantage down 1.4 points
[Average includes: Quinnipiac University: 49% Dems - 43% GOP; CNN: 50% Dems - 42% GOP; Monmouth University: 48% Dems - 41% GOP; Pew Research Center: 48% Dems - 43% GOP; Fox News: 48% Dems - 39% GOP.]
BIG BUCKS KEEP POURING IN FOR RNC
WaPo: “The Republican National Committee entered the summer with nearly twice the fundraising power of its Democratic counterpart, though Democratic campaigns are on track to receive a massive infusion of cash through a roughly $80 million commitment by former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg. As the majority of states gear up for 2018 general-election battles, the RNC yet again showed strong fundraising totals, hauling in another $14 million in May for a total of $187.7 million for the cycle, according to new Federal Election Commission records filed Wednesday night. The RNC had $47.4 million in cash on hand, records show. The Democratic National Committee raised $5.6 million in May for a total of $97.8 million for the cycle. The DNC also remained in debt this month, as it has all year, with $8.7 million cash on hand and $5.7 million in debt, FEC records show.”
Maine Dems get their man in competitive House primary - Roll Call: “More than a week after voters went to the polls, the Maine secretary of state on Wednesday night declared state House Assistant Majority Leader Jared Golden the winner of the Democratic nomination in the 2nd District. Golden will now challenge two-term Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin in November in a traditionally Democratic district that voted for President Donald Trump in 2016. Golden finished first in last week’s three-way primary with 47 percent of the vote, falling short of the majority needed to avoid a so-called instant runoff. Conservationist Lucas St. Clair was second with 39 percent. … With no one getting a majority, the third-place finisher, Islesboro bookstore owner Craig Olson, was eliminated and his votes were distributed to his supporters’ second choices. Golden then finished ahead of St. Clair, 54 percent to 46 percent.”
Matchup set for Maine gubernatorial race - Bangor Daily News: “Attorney General Janet Mills won Maine’s 2018 Democratic gubernatorial nomination after unofficial ranked-choice counts from the state were released Wednesday, defeating attorney Adam Cote and five others after last week’s elections. It took eight days for the winner to be declared by Secretary of State Matt Dunlap’s office after the voting method approved by Maine voters in 2016 was used in a statewide election for the first time in U.S. history in four different races. While Republicans picked businessman Shawn Moody for governor in a landslide on Election Day, Democrats had to wait for Mills of Farmington to be declared the winner over Cote of Sanford, lobbyist Betsy Sweet of Hallowell, former House Speaker Mark Eves of North Berwick and three others.”
Dems divided over who should face Walker - Marquette University: “A new Marquette Law School Poll finds one in three Wisconsin voters remains undecided on August primary candidates in each party. Among Democratic primary voters, 34 percent say that they don’t know which of 10 candidates they will support for the gubernatorial nomination to run against Gov. Scott Walker in November. In the Republican primary for U.S. Senate, 30 percent of primary voters are undecided on who should face Sen. Tammy Baldwin. In the previous poll, Feb. 25-March 1, 2018, 44 percent were undecided in the Democratic primary. Among Republican primary voters, 49 percent were undecided. The non-incumbent candidates are not yet well known to registered voters in Wisconsin. Among Democratic gubernatorial candidates, the percentage who say they haven’t heard enough or don’t know if they have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of each candidate is shown below.”
[Watch Fox: Results from the Fox News poll of the Republican gubernatorial primary in Florida will be announced at 6 p.m. ET on “Special Report with Bret Baier.” Candidates with at least 10 percent support in the poll will be invited to participate in a Fox News debate in Orlando on June 28.]
SENATE SPURNS TRUMP’S SYMBOLIC DEFICIT MOVE
Politico: “The Senate narrowly rejected an attempt to call up the Trump administration’s proposal to cancel billions of dollars from programs like the Children’s Health Insurance Program, dealing a potentially fatal blow to the White House’s first major cost-cutting effort. The procedural vote to tee up President Donald Trump’s $15 billion cutbacks package for floor consideration failed 48-50 Wednesday afternoon. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who opposed the procedural vote, had made clear for weeks that she had objections to the package. But the surprise GOP defection came from Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who had been fighting behind the scenes on the land and water conservation cuts in the rescissions package. Burr ultimately broke with the GOP because he wasn’t guaranteed a vote on his amendment to protect that funding, according to a Senate GOP aide. Senate GOP leaders have until Friday to pass the so-called rescissions measure with a simple majority, before their special procedural powers expire and a 60-vote threshold sets in. So the failed vote could be the Senate’s first and only shot at advancing the White House’s much-heralded, deficit-reduction bill.”
THE JUDGE’S RULING: FIRST DUTIES
This week, Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano asks whether the FBI can be independent: “On the one hand, the FBI is an investigative entity only. It does not decide whom or what to charge; it merely reports its findings to federal prosecutors in conjunction with their presentation of evidence to grand juries. As such, the FBI is subject to the DOJ prosecutors for whom it works, and the DOJ, of course, works for the president. On the other hand, because both the DOJ and the FBI are guided by the ethical rules that govern lawyers and by the values of the rule of law implicit in American culture and recognized by the courts, the DOJ enjoys some independence from the president, and the FBI enjoys some independence from the DOJ. Principles such as equal protection under the law and due process of law protect life, liberty and property and trump instructions of the president to the DOJ and instructions of the DOJ to the FBI.” More here.
SupCo rules states can collect sales tax for online purchases nationwide - Fox News
John Bolton to visit Russia next week to discuss potential summit - CNBC
WH plans merging of education and labor departments: OMB report - Fox News
Trump reportedly tossed Starburst at Merkel during G-7 summit: ‘Don't say I never give you anything’ - Fox News
AUDIBLE: STEPHEN MILLER, CALL YOUR OFFICE
“You ever notice they always call the other side ‘the elite.’ The elite! Why are they elite? I have a much better apartment than they do. I’m smarter than they are. I’m richer than they are. I became president and they didn’t.” – President Trump at a rally in Duluth, Minn. Wednesday night.
FROM THE BLEACHERS
“The era of The Professional Politician is ending. It started as a whisper, then it became louder until now Term Limits is ‘screaming’ to be ‘forced’ onto the agenda. Too often we have watched a ‘Statesman’, once elected, morph into just another self-serving politician. The obvious answer is ‘Term Limits’…but what politician would ‘shoot himself in the foot’. Yes, there has got to be a way.” – Howard Sharpell, San Marcos, Calif.
[Ed. note: It’s a funny thing, Mr. Sharpell. All kinds of people get elected on the basis of being outsiders, but start to sound different when they get here. Potomac Fever is always catching. I go back and forth on the question of term limits. There are certainly some things, like undoing the direct election of senators and restoring regular order in the House, that I think would be worth doing first, but I am sympathetic to the idea of limits, to say the least. I think it would also be helpful if we started judging people on their ideas and their records rather than arbitrarily abjuring those with experience. I know plenty in power who should have gone home long ago – many of whom still make their livings from decrying the establishment. And I have also seen many who are brand new who ought to be bounced out at the first opportunity.]
“I’m not a great brain, but why should America be on the short end of tariffs to the rest of the world? It might have been ok after WW2 but today almost all are equal so by what reasoning is Congress and others complaining about a level playing field? Help me understand the thinking.” – Bob Baker, Brownsville, Texas
[Ed. note: I don’t doubt that your brain is pretty great indeed, Mr. Baker! But I am afraid that you may have been misinformed. The complaint of the current administration is that low-cost good from other countries where things are cheaper to make harms American manufacturing. We may be at full employment, but the current administration wants to reshape the kinds of jobs in which Americans work to return to a mid-20th century manufacturing model. To serve that goal, they are going to make goods from other countries more expensive so American producers get an advantage. This will mean higher costs for consumers, but proponents say it is the price of planning an economy in the model they seek. The larger risk, though, is that other countries will do the same in retaliation and shut off markets for American goods, particularly agricultural products and high-end finished goods like aircraft. We don’t know how the president’s game of chicken is going to play out, but the point here isn’t about helping Americans sell more overseas, it’s about remaking the domestic economy.]
“I love the quotes from Charles Krauthammer you are using. I’ve missed his wisdom and wit since he became ill. His book is a jewel to read.” – David Zlotnick, Santa Fe, N.M.
[Ed. note: It truly, truly is. For those who haven’t read “Things That Matter,” you’re missing out.]
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THEY CALL HIM THE VAPER VAPOR
KTRK: “Owners of a Houston smoke shop hope surveillance video will help police identify a man who crawled on the floor throughout a burglary over the weekend. It all happened Saturday at the Smoking Glass on West 34th Street in northwest Houston. Co-owner Billy Cosgrove said the man targeted the one window that didn't have burglar bars. That's something they have since corrected. ‘I've never seen anybody crawl on video like that to evade the security we have set up,’ Cosgrove said. He said the man came back 20 minutes later, still slithering on the floor. He eventually took nearly $1,000 in merchandise and cash, all while causing more than $700 in damage, Cosgrove said. They're offering a reward for information leading to an arrest.”
AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“This is no time for mushy compromise. A solution requires two acts of national will: the ugly act of putting up a fence and the supremely generous act of absorbing as ultimately full citizens those who broke our laws to come to America.” – Charles Krauthammer, writing in the Washington Post, April 7, 2006.
Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.