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Warren bests Bernie for key left-wing endorsement

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Warren bests Bernie for key left-wing endorsement

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On the roster: Warren bests Bernie for key left-wing endorsement – After Dems pounce, NYT walks back Kavanaugh claim – Trump reaches for New Mexico – Dem leaders draw line on gun legislation – You’re doing it wrong

WARREN BESTS BERNIE FOR KEY LEFT-WING ENDORSEMENT
NYT: “The Working Families Party, the labor-aligned progressive group whose electoral influence has grown since the 2016 election, has endorsed Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts for the Democratic presidential nomination, a boon to her candidacy as she attempts to position herself as the main challenger to former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. The party endorsed Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont during the last presidential cycle, at which time he described Working Families as ‘the closest thing’ to ‘my vision of democratic socialism.’ The group’s endorsement of Ms. Warren on Monday, one of the few by a prominent progressive organization this early in the primary, could turn heads among left-leaning Democrats desperate to defeat Mr. Biden, the more moderate front-runner, in a primary election where their party’s ideological future is at stake.”

Bernie shakes up New Hampshire staff – Fox News: “Facing discontent and unheeded warnings from longtime supporters that he could lose the New Hampshire primary, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont on Sunday replaced the director of his presidential campaign operations in the state that holds the first primary in the race for the White House. The campaign broke the news on Sunday to more than 40 members of Sanders’ steering committee. The campaign announced that Joe Caiazzo was being replaced as state director. Shannon Jackson, who made the announcement, will replace him. Jackson ran Sanders’ 2018 Senate re-election campaign and was a senior adviser on the independent senator’s 2016 White House bid as well as the current campaign. … The move comes as some Sanders supporters in New Hampshire are looking over their shoulders at Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts – the other progressive standard bearer in the record-setting field of Democratic presidential candidates.”

Team Biden warns: Warren can’t connect with blue collar voters – Politico: “As Elizabeth Warren climbs in the polls, Joe Biden’s Massachusetts allies are warning that her election history suggests she runs weakest among the types of voters Democrats need to win over to capture the White House. While Warren won reelection easily in 2018, Biden’s backers point to her performance among independent and blue-collar voters as evidence she’ll fail to appeal to similar voters in the Rust Belt – just as Hillary Clinton did in 2016. ‘The grave concern of many of us Democrats in Massachusetts is that in many of the counties where Sen. Warren underperforms, they are demographically and culturally similar to voters in key swing states,’ said state Rep. John Rogers, who backs Biden. …  Warren’s critics have long assailed the former Harvard Law School professor for being too far liberal and too out-of-touch with blue-collar voters to beat Donald Trump, despite an economic message that speaks directly to many of their concerns.”

Beto comes after Buttigieg over conciliatory his tone on guns – Fox News:Beto O’Rourke launched an expletive-fueled defense of his call Sunday to ban assault-style weapons and impose mandatory buybacks of AR-15s and AK-47s while also pushing back at critics – including fellow 2020 Democrat Pete Buttigieg. During last Thursday’s presidential debate, the former Texas congressman said, ‘Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47…’ Buttigieg [said] the clip … ‘will be played for years at Second Amendment rallies with organizations that try to scare people by saying Democrats are coming for your guns.’  … O’Rourke pushed back in a tweet: …. ‘When candidates say, ‘At least Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell are pretending to be interested,’ sh–, that is not enough. Neither is poll-testing your message. Gun violence is a life or death issue—and we have to represent the bold ideas of people all over the country.’”

Old school South Carolina politics get a boost – NYT: [Today] organizers of the 2019 Galivants Ferry Stump will add new twists to what has become a 143-year tradition. For the first time, the stump meeting will host presidential candidates — and it will do so in the fall of an odd-numbered year. … But with interest in the Democratic primary so high in South Carolina, an early voting state, and no stump event planned until long after the state’s primary voters go to the polls, organizers said they had felt compelled to break from tradition and invite presidential contenders to Galivants Ferry in the fall. As of late Sunday, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.; Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York; Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind.; and Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota were scheduled to attend.

THE RULEBOOK: PRODUCTIVE, BUT NOT IN A GOOD WAY
“The public debt of the Union would be a further cause of collision between the separate States or confederacies. The apportionment, in the first instance, and the progressive extinguishment afterward, would be alike productive of ill-humor and animosity.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 7

TIME OUT: SWEATER WEATHER
The Atlantic: “In his 2005 memoir, Yvon Chouinard, the founder of Patagonia, claimed that his outdoor-clothing company, founded in 1973, was the first to bring the concept to the outdoors community. But the idea goes back further than that. Almost every American’s understanding of layering comes from the mid-century U.S. military. In 1943, the Quartermaster Corps—the branch of the U.S. Army charged with procuring uniforms, among many other essential logistics of war—introduced an experimental new uniform kit, which it named the M-43. The ensemble included a woolen undershirt, a long-sleeved, flannel shirt, and a sweater. … The military shaped Americans’ sense of style in other ways, too. After demobilization, the historian Paul Fussell explains, veterans who had gotten used to ‘loose, highly informal’ uniforms were primed to keep shifting men’s fashion toward casual wear. Out were the ‘trim fit and exaggerated shoulders’ of the prewar period. Looking prepared to get one’s hands dirty, as a soldier might in an M-43 jacket, became more important than a tailored appearance.”

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SCOREBOARD
DEMOCRATIC 2020 POWER RANKING
Biden: 29 points 
Warren: 18.6 points
Sanders: 15 points
Harris: 6.8 points
Buttigieg: 5.2 points
[Averages include: CNN, ABC News/WaPo, IBD, Quinnipiac University and USA Today/Suffolk University.]

TRUMP JOB PERFORMANCE 
Average approval: 40 percent
Average disapproval: 54.8 percent
Net Score: -14.8 percent
Change from one week ago: no change in points
[Average includes: NPR/PBS/Marist: 41% approve – 54% disapprove; CNN: 42% approve – 54% disapprove; ABC News/WaPo: 40% approve – 55% disapprove; IBD: 39% approve – 55% disapprove; Quinnipiac University: 38% approve – 56% disapprove.]

WANT MORE HALFTIME REPORT? 
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AFTER DEMS POUNCE, NYT WALKS BACK KAVANAUGH CLAIM
Fox News: “The New York Times has revised its story to include the fact that several friends of the alleged victim said she told them she did not recall the supposed sexual assault in question. The major revision to the Times’ reporting came several hours after various politicians, including virtually all major 2020 Democratic candidates for president, cited the Times’ reporting as a reason to impeach Kavanaugh. … Top 2020 Democratic contenders Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’Rourke, Cory Booker and Julian Castro announced on Sunday that Supreme Court Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh ‘must be impeached,’ after an uncorroborated and disputed allegation of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh resurfaced in a weekend New York Times piece. The revitalized, longshot push to get Kavanaugh removed from the high court comes as Democrats’ apparent effort to impeach President Trump has largely stalled. Trump, for his part, suggested Sunday that Kavanaugh should sue for defamation.”

Paper botched rollout – NYT: “James Dao, deputy editorial page editor for The Times, said in a statement that the essay was ‘a well-reported and newsworthy account that sheds new light on a matter that provoked significant national debate.’ The Times was roundly criticized for a tweet — which was later deleted — made on its Opinion account on Saturday about the essay that read: ‘Having a penis thrust in your face at a drunken dorm party may seem like harmless fun. But when Brett Kavanaugh did it to her, Deborah Ramirez says, it confirmed that she didn’t belong at Yale in the first place.’ Mr. Dao said the tweet ‘was clearly offensive and never should have gone out and we sincerely apologize.’”

TRUMP REACHES FOR NEW MEXICO
Axios: “At a Trump rally back in February in El Paso, Texas, the campaign saw an unexpected pattern in the attendee data – a large crowd of New Mexicans crossed the state line to be there. ‘That was our first glimpse into the idea that there might be something happening,’ the Trump campaign’s Tim Murtaugh told Axios…. Since then, New Mexico has become an unlikely target for the 2020 Trump campaign. It’s the state with the highest percentage of Hispanics and Latinos (about 1 in 2 residents), and it’s gone with Democrats in 6 of the last 7 general elections. … Demographers and pollsters tell Axios it’s highly unlikely Trump can win New Mexico’s 5 electoral votes. The state Latino population is overwhelmingly Democratic. Major New Mexico cities are booming and moving left politically, while Republican strongholds are losing their share of the population. Trump lost New Mexico in 2016, and his net approval rating has plummeted from +17 when he first took office to -13 as of July.”

House GOPers chafe at Trump-allied consultants – Politico: “House Republicans sparred behind closed doors with Trump-aligned political operatives at a GOP retreat over the new online fundraising platform backed by party leaders and the White House. The fight Thursday over WinRed’s data and competitiveness highlights long simmering tensions between GOP lawmakers and operatives allied with the president, and underscores the growing frustrations in the party as they try to hash out a strategy to win back the House next year. … Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) specifically raised concerns about data sharing, while other lawmakers were confused with how the operation works and pressed operatives for more information about the fundraising tool, according to aides and lawmakers who were present. Stefanik, who formerly led recruitment efforts for the GOP’s campaign arm, pressed WinRed president Gerrit Lansing about whether lawmakers who use the apparatus would have to share their data with other people and questioned how it could be protected, several sources said.”

DEM LEADERS DRAW LINE ON GUN LEGISLATION
Politico: “Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer warned President Donald Trump on Sunday that any firearm legislation that falls short of universal background checks for gun sales ‘will not get the job done,’ complicating delicate negotiations between the president and a group of senators. Trump has been discussing potential legislation with senators in both parties that would expand background checks but would not go as far as House-passed legislation that would apply them to all gun sales with limited exceptions. Trump issued a veto threat on the House’s background-checks bill earlier this year, and few Republicans in Congress support it. But in a conversation with Trump on Sunday morning, the House speaker and Senate minority leader indicated to Trump that they were taking a much harder line than rank-and-file senators involved in the talks.”

Rocky start for shutdown talks – The Hill: “Senate government funding talks are off to a rough start with 10 working days to go until the shutdown deadline. The impasse is throwing into question if senators will be able to get any of the fiscal year 2020 bills through the chamber this month, a setback for Republicans who wanted to clear a major package before October. Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) said he still wants to bring bills to the Senate floor for a vote but warned that lawmakers need to ‘negotiate the terrain.’ ‘We’ve been down that road before,’ he said, asked how the funding talks get unstuck. ‘There’s got to be a resolution to it—it could be sooner. It could be later.’ The partisan breakdown has left lawmakers visibly flummoxed about how to resolve the impasse. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) described the negotiations as ‘pretty fragile.’”

Lewandowski may use testimony as Senate springboard – Axios: “Watch for Trump’s former campaign manager at the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday – and not just because of the prospect of a fiery exchange with Chairman Jerry Nadler. … If Corey Lewandowski goes forward with a run for the Senate in his home state of New Hampshire – which he’s seriously considering, a spokesperson says –  he’d be the first in Trump’s inner circle to test those coattails. … ‘Corey will use [the hearing] as part of the campaign. He will be confrontational to the Democrats. He will be totally loyal to Trump. And he will be playing to the right wing of the party who need to unite behind him in a primary,’ Thomas Rath, former attorney general of New Hampshire and adviser to several GOP presidential candidates, tells Axios. … The Judiciary Committee plans to press for more information about possible obstruction of justice by Trump outlined in Robert Mueller’s report, including his asking Lewandowski to press then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions to end the Russia investigation.”

PLAY-BY-PLAY
Days after resigning as National Security Advisor John Bolton takes old job back as head of two political action committees – USA Today

Pergram: ‘US political discourse needs more ‘flying flamingos’ Fox News

AUDIBLE: WEIRD FLEX…
“What health concerns man, you wanna wrestle?” –  Former Vice President Joe Biden said after a reporter asked when he is going to release his medical records to address concerns about his health Friday afternoon in Houston following a campaign event.

FROM THE BLEACHERS
“Thank you for making it safe to get into the political waters again. After years as a news junkie with my own election night spreadsheet, the last election and personal life trials sent me into a cave. My sister, Kirsten, calls me ‘the perfect juror’ because I am oblivious to the events around me and just trying to survive. She forwarded me a story from the Halftime Report a few months ago and it sparked my interest, so I subscribed. I love that I can scroll through the report just as I do my Facebook feed: ‘Nope, nope, nope – oh! That looks interesting!’ I can choose how much to invest or pay attention and that alleviates the anxiety I often feel when I look at the world. Your wit and style and delicious vocabulary keep me entertained, informed and on my toes! I’ve also made ‘I’ll Tell You What’ part of my weekly routine. I often can’t keep up with all the information, but I want to be a good citizen and I appreciate this format and your love of our nation. I love that you are intellectually honest in your analysis. I don’t belong to a political party because, let’s face it, people are people, and I think we often lose our ability to think clearly because we just want our team to win. I know that with you, I’ll get a straight, yet quirky, answer and not spin. You nailed it in ITYW this week talking about the American people being tired of getting yelled at. We are tired. We’re worn down and oftentimes, dejected by the choices in front of us and the hatred being spewed from all directions. I’m no snowflake, but again, thanks for this ‘safe space’ to peek out of my cave and see what’s happening in the world.  Keep up the good work.” Laura Whitney, Paradise, Utah.

[Ed. note: Ms. Whitney, that may be the finest praise we have ever received! As the youths would say: I feel seen. What you so succinctly said here is the rationale for not just this note but for most of what I do. You most certainly made my day.]

Share your color commentary: Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM and please make sure to include your name and hometown.

YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG
Rocky Mountain Outlook: “It’s not every day a man tries to fight a grizzly bear. But it appears that is what happened in Banff [Canadian] National Park in 2015 when Devin Mitsuing, 35, got out of his truck shirtless and began shouting at the young grizzly while in a ‘boxing stance’ before charging at it, according to an eyewitness to the incident. Caught on camera by a couple of nearby photographers, who were taking pictures of the lone grazing grizzly on Highway 93 and called [the Royal Canadian Mounted Police] after the incident, Mitsuing was later located in Radium, B.C. by RCMP and a Park Warden and charged under the National Parks Act, for disturbing wildlife in a national park. After two previous missed court dates, the case finally came to trial in the Canmore Provincial Courthouse Friday (Sept. 13) morning with Judge George Gaschler finding the Saskatchewan man guilty and imposing a [$3,020.24] fine.”

AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“It’s a future hope, but amid dire circumstances. By then, Iran will be flush with cash, legitimized as a normal international actor in good standing, recognized (as Obama once said) as ‘a very successful regional power.’ Stopping Iran from going nuclear at that point will be infinitely more difficult and risky.” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) writing in The Washington Post, July 16, 2015.

Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Liz Friden contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.

Politics

Trump rips New York Times over Kavanaugh piece, calls for resignation of anyone involved in ‘SMEAR story’

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Trump rips New York Times over Kavanaugh piece, calls for resignation of anyone involved in 'SMEAR story'

President Trump blasted The New York Times over its supposed bombshell report on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, calling on “everybody” involved in the “smear” to resign.

“I call for the Resignation of everybody at The New York Times involved in the Kavanaugh SMEAR story, and while you’re at it, the Russian Witch Hunt Hoax, which is just as phony!” Trump tweeted Monday evening.

“They’ve taken the Old Grey Lady and broken her down, destroyed her virtue and ruined her reputation… She can never recover, and will never return to Greatness, under current Management. The Times is DEAD, long live The New York Times!”

NEW YORK TIMES CRITICIZED FROM BOTH SIDES OVER NOW-REVISED KAVANAUGH ALLEGATIONS

Late Sunday, The New York Times walked back an explosive report about a resurfaced allegation of sexual assault by Kavanaugh from his college days. The piece by Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, adapted from their forthcoming book, alleged there was corroboration of an incident in which Kavanaugh, as a college student at Yale, exposed himself to a female classmate at a party.

However, The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway — who reviewed an advance copy of the book – flagged an omission and the paper eventually revised the controversial story after being lampooned on social media over the gaffe.

The update included the significant detail that several friends of the alleged victim said she did not recall the purported sexual assault. The newspaper also stated for the first time that the alleged victim refused to be interviewed, and has made no other comment about the episode.

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Trump was asked about whether anyone from The Times should be “fired” over the controversy. He called it a “fair” question but didn’t directly give an answer.

“I think The New York Times made another terrible mistake,” Trump said. “It’s a shame that a thing like that could happen… They used to have a thing called fact-checking. They don’t have fact-checking anymore.”

Fox News’ Brian Flood and Gregg Re contributed to this report.

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With New Mexico rally, Trump seeks to flip state won by Clinton in 2016

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With New Mexico rally, Trump seeks to flip state won by Clinton in 2016

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump will hold one of his signature rallies on Monday night in New Mexico, a longtime Democratic stronghold his campaign has added to the list of states it hopes to win in the November 2020 election.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump holds a campaign rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina, U.S., September 9, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo

The last time New Mexico supported a Republican in a presidential race was 2004. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton beat Trump there by 8 percentage points three years ago.

Trump’s campaign sees an opening in the state with Latinos, who it believes will swing his way despite tough immigration policies, including a crackdown on migrants from Central America and a push to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico.

Democrats have criticized those efforts. But a Trump campaign aide said the Republican president could win over Latinos who came to the United States legally and believe others should, too.

“Big crowd expected in New Mexico tonight, where we will WIN. Your Border Wall is getting stronger each and every day — see you in a few hours!” Trump tweeted ahead of his trip.

The campaign also views Trump’s support for the fossil fuel industry as a plus in the state, which is rich in oil and natural gas, said the campaign aide, who declined to be named. Trump is likely to discuss energy on Monday night.

Trump won the White House in 2016 with electoral votes from traditional Republican-leaning states and some surprise Democratic-leaning ones.

The Trump campaign says it wants New Mexico’s five electoral votes to augment the 306 electoral votes the president received in his first election, not create a separate path for victory. A candidate must get 270 electoral votes nationally to win.

Democrats, who did well in New Mexico during the 2018 mid-term elections, are skeptical.

“Last cycle, Democrats crushed Republicans in New Mexico because voters are fed up with President Trump’s toxic healthcare agenda and broken promises,” said David Bergstein, a communications director for the Democratic National Committee focused on battleground states.

“We take nothing for granted, but this GOP strategy looks like they’re concerned about a realistic pathway to 270 electoral votes,” he added.

Trump won electoral-vote-rich swing states such as Ohio and Florida in 2016, while also picking up Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania from Democrats.

The campaign says it is eyeing more pickups in 2020, including Colorado, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Nevada.

Reporting by Jeff Mason; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Tom Brown

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California adds Iowa to ‘travel ban’ over refusal to fund gender transitions

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California adds Iowa to 'travel ban' over refusal to fund gender transitions

California announced Monday that it has added Iowa to the list of states on its ever-expanding “travel ban” list because of that state’s new prohibition against funding gender-transition surgeries under Medicaid.

The announcement by state Attorney General Xavier Becerra means that as of Oct. 4, California will no longer offer taxpayer-funded trips to Iowa for any public employee or student at a state-run university.

Becerra’s authority came from a 2016 California law signed by then-Gov. Jerry Brown that bars state-funded travel to other states that undercut LGBT rights. The list already included Alabama, Kentucky, North Carolina, Texas, Oklahoma and Mississippi.

WATCH: LIBERAL POLICIES BLAMED FOR WORSENING CALIFORNIA’S HOMELESSNESS CRISIS

Conservatives have called the law ineffective, inconveniencing, possibly unconstitutional and hypocritical. The state’s sports teams have turned to private funding to get around the restrictions, according to The Los Angeles Times.

A homeless woman smokes as she waits for city crews to clean the area near Los Angeles City Hall Monday, July 1, 2019. California is overrun with homeless individuals. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)

A homeless woman smokes as she waits for city crews to clean the area near Los Angeles City Hall Monday, July 1, 2019. California is overrun with homeless individuals. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)

“The Iowa Legislature has reversed course on what was settled law under the Iowa Civil Rights Act, repealing protections for those seeking gender-affirming health care,” Becerra said in a statement. “California has taken an unambiguous stand against discrimination and government actions that would enable it.”

The brouhaha began after the Iowa Supreme Court ruled in March that taxpayers could be forced to pay for gender reassignment surgery. Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a law effectively overriding that ruling two months later.

At the federal level, the Trump administration has disputed the idea that sex-based discrimination prohibitions under law include protections for gender identity. The Health and Human Services Department, in May, angered progressive advocates with rules that both allowed doctors not to perform certain operations and stated that “gender identity” was not protected under sex discrimination law in health care.

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Fox News’ Sam Dorman contributed to this report.

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