Maggie Haberman: “Tabloid headlines. Personal dramas. Organizational disarray. Score-settling between rival factions documented in news accounts like a soap opera. Does this have a familiar ring? No one — or mostly no one — truly believes the swirl of headlines surrounding Bill and Hillary Clinton in the summer of 2013 should lead to a grand conclusion about whether another iteration of a Clinton campaign can be run effectively, free of the internecine warfare and incessant drama that marked her 2008 bid. But if Clinton and her supporters were hoping to allay those doubts well ahead of a possible 2016 run, the past few months have not been helpful.”
Al Hunt: “Hillary Clinton is cheering on Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus's efforts to kill a pair of upcoming televised programs about her. … Members of the Clinton camp … worry the TV series are more likely to hurt than help their candidate in the likely event she decides to run. They calculate the Republicans are already, in the words of one pundit, ‘working the refs’ -- meaning the networks now would have to bend over backward to avoid turning the programs into flattering portraits. And they note the director of the CNN program is Charles Ferguson, who won an Academy Award for "Inside Job," a scathing documentary on the Wall Street financial crisis. That film cast blame, in part, on key figures in President Bill Clinton's administration for their roles in the events leading up to the crash.
CALIFORNIA:San Diego Union-Tribune: “Mayor Bob Filner and his legal opponents held a mediation session Monday to resolve the sexual harassment litigation against him as a recall effort remained in full swing and a group of supporters rallied outside City Hall to urge Filner to stay in office. The settlement talks being overseen by J. Lawrence Irving, a former federal judge and highly sought after mediator, center on the lawsuit filed by attorney Gloria Allred on behalf of former mayoral aide Irene McCormack Jackson. Allred, Jackson and Filner were in attendance along with City Attorney Jan Goldsmith, City Council President Todd Gloria and Councilman Kevin Faulconer.” More: “Speculation has been rampant for weeks that Filner would use the only leverage he has left — resignation — as a bargaining chip to escape the ongoing scandal with limited legal and financial exposure.”
COLORADO: “Residents in a conservative northern Colorado county will vote this November on whether to secede and create a new state, after a local commission on Monday approved ballot language backed by tea party activists,” the Washington Post’s Reid Wilson reports. But he adds, “Secession isn’t going to happen; the Colorado legislature and the U.S. Congress would have to ratify the notion. But it’s not unheard of: West Virginia, Maine, Vermont and Kentucky were all once a part of other states before breaking off to form their own governments.”
LOUISIANA: An NRSC poll has Democrat Mary Landrieu below 50% and leading Rep. Bill Cassidy 45%-41%.
MAINE: “Gov. Paul LePage told a group of Republicans last week that President Obama ‘hates white people,’ according to two state lawmakers who say they heard the remark directly,” the Portland Press-Herald reports. “The governor made the comment during a Maine Republican Party fundraiser on Aug. 12 at the home of John and Linda Fortier in Belgrade.”
A LePage adviser released the following statement: “It seems farfetched for anyone, even a newspaper, to make an insinuation the governor is racist given his life history." It also references a Jamaican man the LePages cared for while the man attended high school in Maine.
“A Maine Republican National Committee member and six state committee members have resigned and left the GOP, a sign of continued tensions within in the party as it attempts to unify ahead of the 2014 elections,” AP writes. “Libertarian-leaning RNC member Mark Willis of Washington County and the others resigned in a letter Sunday, citing concerns about the party's direction in Maine and across the country. The letter was signed by six others Republicans… All 13 said they are withdrawing from the party.” More: “The group pointed to a number of issues including Maine GOP lawmakers' failure to override Gov. Paul LePage's veto of the state budget, which raised the meals and lodging and sales taxes. It also criticized Republicans in Congress for backing ‘feel good,’ restrictive and ineffective gun control legislation.”
NEW JERSEY: Cory Booker (D-NJ) holds a 54%-38% lead over Republican Steve Lonegan in a Monmouth University/Asbury Park Press poll ahead of the October special election for the Senate.
NEW YORK: Bill de Blasio is standing up for the reputation of… actress Susan Sarandon. “I’m a little sick and tired of attacks on Susan Sarandon,” he said yesterday. “They have happened so frequently over the years because she stands up for what’s right. And there’s no question that she stood up for healthcare in this community.”
TENNESSEE: State Rep. Joe Carr, a Tea Party backed candidate, may challenge Sen. Lamar Alexander (R) instead of Rep. Scott DesJarlais.
VIRGINIA: The Washington Post: “The contenders in Virginia governor’s race on Monday took aim at each other’s ethics using some now familiar weapons: Terry McAuliffe attacked Ken Cuccinelli with a new television ad about gifts the Republican received from a prominent GOP donor, while an op-ed by Cuccinelli about McAuliffe’s struggling car company questioned the Democrat’s ability to tell the truth. The grime issuing almost daily from both camps has threatened to obscure debate over other issues in one of the nation’s most closely watched races this year.”
The Washington Post editorial board blasts Cuccinelli’s economic “plan,” which it says fits on half a page and relies on “magical thinking.” It concludes: “At the heart of the Cuccinelli vision is the same fantasy that animated the McDonnell plan four years ago — sacrifice is for suckers; popular and vital services can be had for free; and Virginia voters are saps. In fact, revenue cannot be summoned from thin air, either by Mr. McDonnell or by Mr. Cuccinelli.”
First published August 20 2013, 6:08 AM