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Donald Trump to Paul Ryan: ‘This is What the People Want’

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump doesn’t think he needs to earn the support of House Speaker Paul Ryan.

“I really think I earned the support from the people. You know, we’ve gotten more votes than anybody in this position that’s ever run for the office,” Trump told George Stephanopoulos in an interview that will air on This Week Sunday.

Trump also has a message to deliver to Ryan when he meets with him on Capitol Hill next week. “I’m gonna say, ‘Look, this is what the people want,'” he said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

GOP Leadership Sets Meeting with Donald Trump Next Thursday

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Win McNamee/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — House Speaker Paul Ryan has invited Republican presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump to meet with the House Republican leadership next Thursday morning, Ryan tweeted Friday.

In a separate gathering, Trump is also expected to meet with Ryan and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, according to Ryan’s political office.

 

I’ve invited @realDonaldTrump for a meeting with GOP leaders next week, and I look forward to the discussion.

— Paul Ryan (@PRyan) May 6, 2016

 

The scheduled meetings represent a stark transformation in tone after Trump and Ryan sparred publicly the past 24 hours.

“I hope to support our nominee, I hope to support his candidacy going forward,” Ryan said in an interview with CNN on Thursday. “I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m not there right now.”

A short time later, the presumptive Republican nominee responded with his own dig at the most powerful elected Republican in the country.

“I am not ready to support Speaker Ryan’s agenda,” Trump wrote in a statement Thursday. “Perhaps in the future we can work together and come to an agreement about what is best for the American people. They have been treated so badly for so long that it is about time for politicians to put them first!”

The leadership meeting next week will include Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Majority Whip Steve Scalise and Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, according to Ryan’s political office and House Republican leadership sources.

The meeting is set to be held at the RNC’s headquarters on Capitol Hill.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Lindsey Graham Says He Won’t Support Donald Trump

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

US Senate(WASHINGTON) — South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, one of Donald Trump’s most vocal Republican critics, announced Friday that he would not support the presumptive GOP nominee in a general election.

Saying he also refused to vote for Hillary Clinton, Graham said, “I also cannot in good conscience support Donald Trump because I do not believe he is a reliable Republican conservative nor has he displayed the judgment and temperament to serve as Commander in Chief.”

The senior senator also said in the statement that he would not attend the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this summer.

Graham, who ended his own presidential bid in December, had previously, albeit begrudgingly, endorsed Sen. Ted Cruz as the only viable alternative to Trump.

But he had made his distaste with both candidates clear, saying repeatedly that choosing between Cruz and Trump was like “being shot or poisoned. What does it matter?”

Graham also said in his statement that he would focus on helping Republicans win other offices throughout the country.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Obama’s Message to Bernie Sanders: ‘Everybody Knows’ Delegate Math

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — As Bernie Sanders pledges to take his presidential campaign all the way to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia this July, President Obama appeared to imply that Sanders’ efforts are all but over — even if he won’t explicitly call on Sanders to drop out.

Asked whether he believes the Vermont senator should end his campaign given the current delegate count, he replied, “I think on the Democratic side, just let the process play itself out. You mentioned the delegate math. I think everybody knows what that math is.”

According to ABC News’ estimates, Hillary Clinton has 2,205 delegates compared to Sanders’ 1,401 delegates.

Nevertheless, Obama commended Sanders for “an extraordinary job raising a whole range of issues” that are important to Democratic voters.

“I know that at some point there is going to be a conversation between Secretary Clinton and Bernie Sanders about how we move towards the convention,” the president predicted.

Obama acknowledged that while “everybody starts getting a little chippy” in the course of primaries, “the good news is that there is a pretty strong consensus within the Democratic Party on the vast majority of issues.”

“You know, I’ve been through this. It’s natural,” he continued. “Sometimes, even more with the staffs and supporters than with the candidates themselves.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Obama Says Presidency Is Not a ‘Reality Show’

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

The White House(WASHINGTON) — President Obama is asking Republican voters to take a closer look at proposals floated by Donald Trump, who he says is now “the standard bearer” of the GOP.

“I want to emphasize that we are in serious times and this is a really serious job,” Obama told reporters Friday. “This is not entertainment. This is not a reality show.”

The president has said repeatedly he does not believe Trump will be his successor.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Obama Calls Donald Trump the ‘Standard Bearer’ of GOP

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

The White House(WASHINGTON) — President Obama is asking Republican voters to take a closer look at proposals floated by Donald Trump, who he says is now “the standard bearer” of the GOP.

“I want to emphasize that we are in serious times and this is a really serious job,” Obama told reporters Friday. “This is not entertainment. This is not a reality show.”

Obama said he hoped the media would take a closer look at policies put forward by the candidates as the general election campaign neared.

“If they take a position on international issues that could threaten war, or has the potential of upending our critical relationships with other countries or would potentially break the financial system. That needs to be reported on,” the president said. “The one thing that I’m gonna be looking for over the next six months is that the American people are effectively informed about where candidates stand on the issues.”

Asked to weigh in on the purported feud between House Speaker Paul Ryan and Trump, Obama said there’s “no doubt” Republicans are assessing the identity and future of their party.

“Their standard bearer at the moment is Donald Trump, and I think not just Republican officials but more importantly Republican voters are going to have to make a decision as to whether this is the guy that speaks for them and represents their values,” the president said.

Obama has said repeatedly he does not believe Trump will be his successor.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Reince Priebus on Donald Trump’s Taco Tweet: ‘He’s Trying’

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Mark Wilson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A tweet showing Donald Trump eating a taco bowl on Cinco de Mayo while declaring, “I love Hispanics!” signals that the GOP front-runner is “trying.”

That’s according to Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus, who told reporters on Friday that the GOP’s presumptive nominee understands the importance of attracting Hispanic voters to the party, despite his past comments on undocumented immigrants.

“He’s trying. Honestly, he’s trying,” Priebus told Politico’s Mike Allen at a breakfast event on Friday. “I honestly think he understands that building and unifying and growing the party is the only way we’re going to win. I think he gets that.”

Trump’s stance toward the nation’s immigration policies have been widely criticized. He’s referred to undocumented immigrants as “rapists” and “murderers” and his call for the construction of a wall along the Mexican border has become a rallying cry for his supporters.

The most recent ABC News/Washington Post poll shows that eight in 10 Hispanic voters have a negative view of Trump.

After GOP rivals Ted Cruz and John Kasich dropped out of the race earlier this week, elected Republicans and other prominent GOP strategists have been divided on whether to immediately endorse Trump’s bid. The most prominent defection so far has come from the highest-ranking GOP elected official himself: House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Priebus said Trump called him shortly after Ryan revealed he wasn’t ready to support Trump as the party’s nominee. “You know, it wasn’t like furious or anything,” Priebus said. “It was like, what do I need to do? And so, I said ‘Listen, my view is just relax and be gracious and I’ll talk to Paul and we’ll try to work on this.'”

Priebus said that Trump could calm fears from conservatives by releasing a short list of names to be Supreme Court nominees, suggesting that focusing on appointing a conservative to the bench would help unite the party around Trump.

“I think things like that would be helpful in kind of re-calibrating some people’s minds as far as, okay, what is this about? Why do we need to support the Republican nominee?” he said.

Priebus was also asked whether it was possible for a last-minute rule change to block Trump from winning the nomination in Cleveland.

“Look, my personal view is, it is highly, highly doubtful,” he said. “As I said before, the rules committee of 2016 writes the rules for the convention. I don’t write the rules…nothing’s impossible, like I said, I said this many times, highly, and I add another one, highly unlikely.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Obama Meets with Child of Undocumented Immigrants on Cinco de Mayo

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Pete Souza/White House(WASHINGTON) — The White House Thursday evening shared a photo of President Obama meeting with 6-year-old Sophie Cruz, an activist and child of undocumented immigrants.

Cruz is known for her impromptu hug with Pope Francis on his visit to the U.S. last September. She handed the pope a letter calling for him to urge Congress to pass immigration reform, explaining that both her parents are undocumented workers from Mexico.

Because of her parent’s legal status, they were not permitted to accompany her to the White House for the Cinco de Mayo celebration Thursday.

The White House shared photos of both Obama and Vice President Joe Biden meeting with Cruz privately before the celebration.

Today, @POTUS and @VP met young activist Sophie Cruz at the White House #CincoDeMayo reception. Photo by @petesouza. pic.twitter.com/DOWbrsZ30M

— La Casa Blanca (@lacasablanca) May 6, 2016

Obama said during the reception that his inability to press Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform “has been one of the most frustrating aspects of my presidency.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Trump Caters to Coal Country in West Virginia Rally

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(CHARLESTON, W.Va.) — Before Donald Trump came out to the stage at the Charleston Civic Center in West Virginia, it was clear where the crowd’s support was going. Chants of “We want Trump!” rang through the audience.

“TRUMP DIGS COAL,” signs were scattered through Charleston Civic Center Thursday evening.

One day after becoming the presumptive Republican nominee, Trump made his first campaign stop in the Mountain State, with a targeted message geared towards miners and the coal industry.

“I am thinking about the miners all over this country. We’re going to put the miners back to work,” Trump said, calling on the miners who were in the crowd of thousands to stand up. “We are going to get those mines open. Oh, coal country. What they have done.”

His all but official pivot to the general election was apparent in the crowd, who greeted the real-estate mogul with ecstatic cheers and the West Virginia-rooted John Denver song, “Take Me Home, Country Roads.”

Trump has long promised to become more “presidential” but Thursday night, this was the same Trump as always.

He delivered his usual message about trade and China, promising to build the wall. The New York businessman also addressed his Democratic rival, hitting her for past comments vowing to put the coal industry out of business.

“She said ‘I’m going to put the miners and the mines out of business.’ And then she comes over and she tried to explain her statement. That is a tough one to explain. Wouldn’t you say?” he asked.

It was a preview of the general election battle that is soon to come, one that will surely be rife with attacks, both personal and professional. But, for some voters, they were just happy that a contentious primary season had come to an end; happy their candidate made it to the finish line.

Phillip Baisden, 45, of Huttonsville, West Virginia was laid off from a coal-industry job, which he blames on “Democratic President Obama.” Baisden, along with his wife and five children, believe and hope Trump will bring jobs back to his state.

Baisden, decked out in Trump paraphernalia was overjoyed, but admits he didn’t believe Trump had a fighting chance when he announced his run for the White House in June.

“When he first publicly announced that he was going to run for president, it was interesting, but I didn’t think he had a chance,” Baisden told ABC News. “I really thought there was no way.”

Bob Goines, 63, of Logan, West Virginia, worked in the West Virginia coal mines for 32 years before retiring. He and his sister waited for three hours in the rain to see the man who Goines says he has supported for six months now. He, too, admits he’s surprised Trump has made it this far.

“I am totally shocked because when this first started and there were 17 candidates out there I told my wife there was no way in Hades that Trump would ever get this far,” Goines remembered. “It is just shocking for me to be here. This is witnessing history because he’s done something no one has ever done before.

Meanwhile, Rob Simmons, a veteran said that he always knew the businessman would prevail.

“Watch his face watch his expressions, he’s got the expressions of a man that is secure in what he says and does. He is a man that wants the truth said about this government, this country,” Simmons said, a smile brightening his face.

Simmons praised the businessman for being self-funded, a once core tenant of Trump’s campaign. But, Thursday evening, Trump told the crowd that he would accept donations for his general election campaign.

Nonetheless, many supporters aren’t swayed, praising the candidate’s “character” and “honesty,” admiring the fact that their next president has no “hidden agenda” and won’t be beholden to his donors.

“Trump is an honest good man, he really is,” said Carrie Simmons of Wheeling, West Virginia. “His character is a lot deeper in loving people, loving America and giving us, the American people the freedom to be the people that we need to be.”

Wheeling says there is no doubt Trump will be the next president.

“I think he’s a winner, he knows how to win, and he’s winning and I think he’s going to win it,” Wheeling said before Trump took the stage.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Obama Holds Festive, Final Cinco de Mayo at ‘la Casa Blanca’

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — As President Obama was received by an audience chanting, “Four more years!” he broke into some Spanish, welcoming the friendly crowd gathered in the East Room of the White House with, “Buenas tardes, Feliz Cinco de Mayo! Bienvenidos a la Casa Blanca.”

He called the annual celebration, which featured the Mexican rock band Maná, “one of our best fiestas of the year.”

“We all know the story of Cinco de Mayo,” Obama said. “One hundred fifty-four years ago, the French, one of the strongest armies of the 19th century, marched on the tiny town of Puebla. An ill-equipped and hastily-trained band of Mexican patriots grabbed whatever weapons they could find, and they fought off the opposing forces, and eventually regained full independence.”

Obama said he spoke with Mexican President Peña Nieto today about, “shared work on advancing the prosperity and the security of Americans and Mexicans.”

“So I wished him a happy Cinco de Mayo,” the president said. “He asked me to extend the same to you, so I’m doing my duty here. It’s a reminder of not just a holiday, but the incredible bonds that our two countries share.”

The president then reminded the audience of his administration’s accomplishments geared toward the Latino population, including increased high school and college graduation rates, cutting the Latino dropout rate by more than half since 2000, ensuring that more than 700,000 DREAMers, “have the opportunity to reach their potential,” and fighting to fix the immigration system.

“The fact that we weren’t able to get it through Congress has been one of the most frustrating aspects of my presidency, but our ability to take actions within my legal authority to make our immigration system fairer and smarter and more just I continue to believe are going to help pave the way for us to finally get the law passed through the next Congress,” he said.

“And I’ve got to tell you, I’m going to keep on working on this not just as President, but as a citizen — once I’m leaving here — because I think it’s one of the most important things we can get done,” he added.

The president concluded his remarks, crediting the people who have worked to, “push this country forward, even just a little bit, and then handing it off in better shape for future generations.”

“For that, I think you’ve all earned a few margaritas,” Obama quipped.
 
Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Hillary Clinton’s Cinco de Mayo LA Rally Anything but Festive Due to Protesters

Posted on: May 6th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Liz Kreutz(LOS ANGELES) — Hillary Clinton headed to East Los Angeles Thursday night in honor of the Mexican holiday Cinco de Mayo — but her rally in this predominantly Hispanic part of L.A. was anything but celebratory.

Hundreds of protesters descended upon East Los Angeles College to express their disdain for the Democratic presidential front-runner. Most of the protesters remained outside the college, although some made their way inside.

The protesters — some of whom carried pro-Bernie Sanders signs — spanned the spectrum in terms of their key issues: Some were protesting Clinton’s refusal so far to release her speaking engagement transcripts and her ties to Wall Street, while others took issue with Clinton’s “super-predator” remarks in 1994, and the crime bill her then-president husband signed that year. Others also headed to Clinton’s rally to protest her involvement in the 2009 Honduras coup, and to accuse her of pandering to the Hispanic community.

Protesters in East LA have formed two long lines – and are yelling at Clinton supporters as they leave her event pic.twitter.com/I6zgTeAe6n

— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) May 6, 2016

Maritza Galvez, a 21-year-old student at the college, carried a sign that read, “We only matter when it’s Cinco de Mayo.” A man, who was leading a crowd, shouted into a loud speaker, “Hillary Clinton and the Democratic party have to know that they cannot come to Los Angeles, occupy Mexico on Cinco de Mayo, and think that we are not going to come out and denounce them!”

East LA college student, Maritza Gálvez, 21, protests Clinton: "We only matter when it's Cinco de Mayo." pic.twitter.com/he4mlhFvpx

— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) May 5, 2016

Other signs read: “Black Lives Matter Not Super-predators,” “Hillary Do Your Friends Make $12 or $15?” “Viva Bernie!” “NAFTA? IRAQ WAR? HONDURAS? Hmmm?” “Release the Transcripts,” “CALIFORNIA WHERE THE CLINTON & TRUMP SCAM WILL BE EXPOSED,” and “Welcome to LA Where Hispandering to Chicanos Doesn’t Work!!!”

One sign specifically stood out: It was a giant photo of the Clintons with GOP front-runner Donald Trump at his Florida wedding — an obvious nod that Clinton’s relationship with Trump was not always so acrimonious.

There was a large police presence outside the college, with LAPD officers on horses blocking off areas with yellow tape. There were also a few LAPD helicopters flying overhead.

Man to Clinton supporters leaving her event: "Liar! Liar! Why are you voting for a liar?" pic.twitter.com/mdNFHqN6ZA

— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) May 6, 2016

After the event, protesters formed two long lines along a narrow pathway and aggressively yelled out at Clinton supporters as they exited the rally. “She’s a liar! Liar! Why are you voting for a liar?” one man shouted. Others chanted, “Hillary Fuera East LA!” (meaning “get out”).

Another protester confronts Clinton on the rope line. Agents surround him and escort him out: pic.twitter.com/iPl6dPViEm

— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) May 6, 2016

Inside, Clinton was confronted on the rope line by a protester who was quickly surrounded by police and taken out. And during her remarks, one woman, who appeared to be protesting Clinton’s role in the 2009 coup in Honduras, shouted loudly, “She killed Berta! She killed Berta!” — referring to Berta Caceres, a Honduran environmental activist and indigenous leader, who called out Clinton for her role in the coup, before being assassinated in March.

As this was happening, Clinton supporters countered with chants of “Hillary! Hillary!”

Clinton acknowledged her supporters’ chants, telling them, “I mean this crowd is ready, aren’t you? I mean, I can’t do this without you.”

Rowdy crowd here — cops escort second protester out of Clinton's event as supporters chant "Hillary! Hillary!" pic.twitter.com/dT5WV6Dj44

— Liz Kreutz (@ABCLiz) May 6, 2016

Likely because of the commotion, Clinton gave a very short speech by her standards: Just over 13 minutes — nearly all of which focused on Trump.

Appealing to the largely Hispanic crowd, Clinton hit Trump hard on immigration.

“Just yesterday Donald Trump doubled down on his plan to create a deportation force to round up millions of people, that’s actually what he said,” Clinton reminded the rally-goers. “He has pledged in his first days in office to scrap DACA and DAPA. And to finalize a design for a giant wall on the border. Well the best way to prevent that from happening is to make sure he never gets near the White House.”

Clinton also acknowledged it was Cinco de Mayo, which commemorates the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War.

“I got to start by saying, that on Cinco de Mayo,” she said, “I can’t think of a better place to be than right here.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Hillary Clinton Gives Bernie Sanders a History Lesson in Dropping Out

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(LOS ANGELES) — To date, Hillary Clinton and her campaign have been very cautious about saying Bernie Sanders should drop out of the primary race. But remarks the Democratic presidential front-runner made Thursday suggest she does think her opponent has passed his sell-by date.

While speaking at the California African American Museum in Los Angeles Thursday morning, Clinton appeared to come just shy of flat-out telling the Vermont senator — who has vowed to stay in the race through the convention in July — it’s time for him to bow out. (If not that, though, she at the very least made the argument for why she believes he should strongly consider it.)

“I am three million plus votes ahead of Sen. Sanders, right? I am nearly 300 pledged delegates ahead of Sen. Sanders. When I was running against then-Sen. Obama, he and I were neck and neck in the popular vote. Depending on how you counted it, I was a little ahead or he was a little ahead. He was about 60 or so pledged delegates ahead. A much, much smaller margin than what we see in this race,” Clinton told a group of black community leaders Thursday morning, just one day after it became clear Donald Trump will be the likely Republican presidential nominee.

“But I knew that he had won,” she continued, “Because it matters how many delegates you have, whether it’s 60 or 300, right?”

Eight years ago, Clinton dropped out of the primary race on June 7, 2008, when, according to delegate counts at the time by several major news organizations, Obama was ahead of Clinton by roughly 124 pledged delegates. The two contenders were, as Clinton said Thursday, neck and neck in the popular vote, according to a Real Clear Politics count that showed Obama at 48.1 percent and Clinton at 48 percent.

Fast forward to today. According to ABC News’ delegates estimate, Clinton is currently ahead of Sanders by 321 pledged delegates: 1,683 to 1,362. (This is not counting Clinton’s enormous lead in superdelegates.) She is also ahead in the popular vote by more than three million votes, according to a count by Real Clear Politics; however, that number does not include all caucus states, many of which Sanders has won.

The fact is, in 2008 Clinton did not drop out of the race until after the final Democratic primaries were held in early June. But at this point in the race, in early May, she was facing similar pressure to concede.

Clinton’s decision to stay in the race for as long as she did then has made it tricky for her to call on Sanders to drop out now.

Earlier this week, Clinton said in an interview on MSNBC that Sanders “has every right to finish out this primary season.” And last month, she told reporters when asked if she understands why her opponent would want to stay in the race, “It’s up to everyone to decide how long they stay in and if we go to the end … just as I did in ’08.”

Her comments Thursday, however, were some of the farthest she’s gone in suggesting her opponent should consider dropping out.

“I withdrew, I endorsed [Obama], I campaigned with him, I nominated him at the convention, I went to the floor of the convention and moved that he be nominated by acclamation. Because I knew this: That whatever differences we might’ve had in the campaign, they were nothing compared to the difference between us and the Republicans,” she said, making an argument about party unity. “Now if that was true in ’08, that is true on steroids today, right?”

Clinton is setting her sights on the general election by planning travel to battleground states, where her campaign is already staffing up, and focusing on ways to take down Trump.

Sanders, meanwhile, is powering on. He plans to campaign in California and has said to expect a contested convention in July.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Donald Trump’s Impact on Down-Ticket Races Is Already Showing

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Donald Trump’s likely presidential nomination could have a trickle-down effect for other political races this cycle.

The impact of likely having Trump at the top of the ballot come November is already being used as a weapon in some races, and apparently has at least one senior Republican concerned about his re-election.

“Some Republicans will come back to the fold, hold their noses, and vote, but many won’t,” said James Campbell, a professor of political science at the University at Buffalo.

“I suspect that there will be a good number who will go to the polls and just skip the presidential contest, but there will be many who will just sit out the election completely and this will hurt every Republican candidate,” he added.

According to a recording from a private fundraiser that was held in April and obtained by ABC News, Arizona Sen. John McCain expressed concerns about how if Trump is selected as the Republican nominee, that could cause him problems in his re-election campaign.

“If there is a Donald Trump at the top of the ticket, and you’re in Arizona with over 30 percent of the vote being Hispanic vote, I have no doubt that this may be the race of my life,” McCain says in the recording.

“The first wedge that Donald Trump had that gave him a rise was build a wall, rapist, murderers, etc. And … if you listen to or watch Hispanic media in the state or the country, you will see that it is all anti-Trump. The Hispanic community is roused and angry in a way that I have never seen,” McCain says.

McCain’s campaign spokesperson would not comment on the audio but did point out that he has campaigned hard every time he’s up for re-election.

Trump’s words are also being used against Arkansas Sen. John Boozman, who is up for re-election.

He is being challenged by former U.S. Attorney Conner Eldridge, who released an ad that features some statements Trump has made about women and then goes on to call Boozman an “enabler” of harassment since he endorsed the real estate mogul.

“I do think it’s fair because when he says ‘I’ll support Donald Trump’ without any other comments, he is enabling and … implicitly endorsing those comments,” Eldridge told ABC News. Boozman did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

Campbell thinks that these two instances are the first of many. “For Republicans, a long national nightmare still has a long way to go,” Campbell told ABC News.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Trump Responds to Speaker Ryan’s Pledge Not to Support GOP Nominee

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — After House Speaker Paul Ryan walked back from his previous pledge that he would support the eventual Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump is taking on the Wisconsin Republican with a pointed statement of his own.

“I hope to support our nominee, I hope to support his candidacy going forward,” Ryan said in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on Thursday afternoon. “I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m not there right now.”

A short time later, the presumptive Republican nominee responded with his own dig at the most powerful elected Republican in the country.

“I am not ready to support Speaker Ryan’s agenda,” Trump wrote in a statement. “Perhaps in the future we can work together and come to an agreement about what is best for the American people. They have been treated so badly for so long that it is about time for politicians to put them first!”

Ryan had repeatedly pledged to support the Republican nominee, telling reporters on March 1 that “my plan is to support the nominee.”

But Ryan said Thursday that Trump needs to unite conservatives around shared values and principles before he can back the real estate mogul.

“I think he needs to do more to unify this party,” Ryan said. “At this point, I’m just not ready to jump in.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Petition Puts Pressure on Businesses Sponsoring GOP Convention

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(NEW YORK) — With Donald Trump the likely nominee for the Republican party, anti-Trump protesters are turning up the heat on corporations that are sponsoring the GOP convention in Cleveland in July.

Now that Trump’s last competitors have dropped out of the race, protesters are ramping up their efforts against corporate sponsorship at the convention. “Many of the corporations up to this point have tried to say, ‘It’s about democracy,’ or ‘We don’t even know who the nominee is going to be,'” Rashad Robinson, executive director of Color of Change, a nonprofit civil rights group, told ABC News.

Now that Ted Cruz and John Kasich have dropped out, Robinson said, “This is the party for Donald Trump.”

An online petition called “Stop sponsoring Donald Trump” started by Color of Change has nearly 180,000 signatures thus far.

“[Trump] is calling for mass deportation and surveillance of Muslim communities,” Robinson said. “If corporations believe they can sponsor that and not impact their brands, they have not been paying attention to the number of growing Americans who are holding back their support of him.”

Companies have scaled back their donations, though none have specifically mentioned Trump as the impetus.

Last week, Microsoft said it would not donate cash to the Republican convention. The tech company will still provide technology products and services.

“Since we began working with convention committees in 2000, the company has based our actions on three principles,” Fred Humphries, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of U.S. government affairs, explained in a blog post. “First, we act in a bipartisan manner and provide similar levels of support to both conventions. Second, we make a special effort, as do many companies in our industry, to provide the conventions with technology tools to help enable this part of the American democratic process to operate efficiently and accurately. And third, we do not endorse either political party or its nominee.

Robinson said he is “disappointed” in Microsoft’s decision to provide “any resources to Trump’s platform.”

The Coca-Cola Company is donating significantly less to the Republican convention this year than the $660,000 it donated to the event in 2012. For this year’s convention, it donated just $75,000.

“The presidential nominating conventions are made possible through the efforts of the local community’s host committee,” a statement from a Coca-Cola spokesman to ABC News read. “Since the 1890s, the company and our local bottling partners have donated to the local host committees of both parties’ political conventions, regardless of the nominees. Our support helps the host committees run these large events and contributes to local economic development but does not represent an endorsement of any specific party or candidate. In 2015, a $75,000 contribution was made by the company to both the Cleveland 2016 Host Committee and Philadelphia 2016 Host Committee. The Coca-Cola Company is a nonpartisan business and does not endorse presidential candidates or nominees, nor do we endorse any specific party.”

Google, the official live-stream provider at the GOP convention in Cleveland, did not respond to a request for comment about the petition.

A spokeswoman for the convention’s host committee said it has raised $56 million of its $64 million fundraising goal. The donors that have been announced include JobsOhio, the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County. The other corporate sponsors will be released as part of filings with the Federal Election Commission and IRS after the convention.

In March, the Republican National Committee announced that AT&T will be the official provider for communications, video and technology. Last month, AT&T announced it will provide free admission to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame to all guests during the convention.

“For many years, AT&T has assisted the national conventions of both major parties,” a statement from an AT&T spokesman read. “Our expertise is communications, and we invest and prepare our network extensively for events like these. At the same time, we also recognize the important role both conventions play in the functioning of our democracy, and are proud to support them on an impartial basis.”

Robinson said his organization will continue its efforts nonetheless. “These are corporations that we think should be held accountable,” Robinson said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Donald Trump Eats a Taco Bowl to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

realDonaldTrump/Twitter(NEW YORK) — In an apparent celebration of Cinco de Mayo, Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, tweeted a picture of himself eating a taco bowl, a move widely criticized for pandering to Hispanic-Americans.

Happy #CincoDeMayo! The best taco bowls are made in Trump Tower Grill. I love Hispanics! https://t.co/ufoTeQd8yA pic.twitter.com/k01Mc6CuDI

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 5, 2016

Shortly after, Trump’s Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, tweeted a video (with Spanish subtitles) highlighting Trump’s past comments on deporting illegal immigrants.

“I love Hispanics!” —Trump, 52 minutes ago https://t.co/b9mv7nUduN

“They’re gonna be deported.” —Trump, yesterday https://t.co/HzFWUT1XFl

— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 5, 2016

Stopping illegal immigration is one of the central tenants of Trump’s campaign. When he first announced his candidacy, Trump said of illegal Mexican immigrants, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best…they’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll shows that Hispanics do not have a positive impression of Trump; nearly 81 percent view him unfavorably. Trump, meanwhile, insists that “Hispanics” love him and that he loves them. But, in his effort to showcase his admiration for Mexican culture, Trump seems to have forgotten two key facts.

First: The taco bowl is an American creation. Secondly, Trump attempted to promote Trump Tower Grill…but the Grill doesn’t sell taco bowls. Presumably, he meant the Trump Tower Café which is selling the bowls, just for Cinco de Mayo.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

House Speaker Paul Ryan Refuses to Endorse Donald Trump

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Now that Donald Trump has all but clinched the Republican presidential nomination, House Speaker Paul Ryan is walking back from his previous position that he would support the eventual Republican nominee.

“I hope to support our nominee, I hope to support his candidacy going forward,” Ryan said in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper. “But right now…I’m just not there right now.”

Ryan had repeatedly pledged to support the Republican nominee, telling reporters on March 1 that “my plan is to support the nominee.”

Ryan said Trump needs to unite conservatives around shared values and principles before he can back the real estate mogul.

“I think he needs to do more to unify this party,” Ryan said. “At this point I’m just not ready to jump in.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Administration Official Denounces ‘Language of Hate’ Permeating Election

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A top official in the Obama administration denounced hate speech and discriminatory behavior in the United States at an event commemorating Holocaust Remembrance Day, calling on Americans to not let “the fear of the other” root itself in the U.S.

“Hate speech has a friend in silence,” U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker said Thursday at the U.S. Capitol.

She delivered a somber speech to a large crowd, retelling the story of her family’s personal struggle with anti-Semitism, following a processional by the U.S. Army band and the presentation of colors by the 3rd U.S. Infantry.

“I do not think a holocaust is happening in America, but I do worry about what is happening when we betray our principles of inclusion,” she said, taking a broad swipe at the rising intolerance the nation is facing. “You cannot tolerate discrimination against others. We are a country that celebrates the dignity of difference.”

Pritzker, who is Jewish, went on to say the current rhetoric being spewed throughout the election cycle is becoming increasingly anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim. While she didn’t explicitly mention any candidates by name, her message was poignant and clear.

“Today, in our beloved United States, we are witnessing a rising fear of the other,” she said. “We are better than the language of hate. America is not the tribe of folded arms.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Clinton Aide on Trump: ‘We’re Not Going to Chase Him Into the Gutter’

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(NEW YORK) — With Donald Trump now the presumptive Republican nominee, and Hillary Clinton also on pace to lock up the Democrat nomination, the Clinton campaign is readying its playbook to go head-to-head with Trump in a general election.

Clinton campaign press secretary Brian Fallon takes us inside the campaign’s plans to play an aggressive game against Trump in this week’s installment of ABC News’ “Powerhouse Politics” podcast.

“We’re not going to chase him into the gutter,” Fallon said Thursday in an interview with ABC News’ Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl and Political Director Rick Klein.

“You cannot be passive in the face of Donald Trump’s unconventional approach, you need to be aggressive. That does not mean, however, engaging with him in kind,” he said.

Fallon says the Clinton campaign has digested the lessons learned by Republican contenders who tried to beat Trump at his own game in the Republican primary.

“So, you saw Marco Rubio in the last throes of his campaign attempt to trade barbs with him and one-up him with a battle of quips. Even if you could compete with Donald Trump in a battle of quips, our fundamental premise is that that is actually going to turn off most independent voters in a general election, so we are not going to chase him into the gutter,” he said.

Betting on Policy Differences

Clinton also has tools at her disposal — in terms of policy contrasts — that were not available in the same way to Trump’s primary election challengers, Fallon said.

“We have the ability to go after him after him, confront him, condemn him, on policy issues, which is something that was not available to the Republican field because for the most part they agreed with him on policy,” Fallon said. “So that is our ace in the hole.”

There is one point on which the Clinton campaign is prepared to concede to Trump from the start: the volume of news coverage. Fallon said he anticipates that Trump will continue to grab headlines and dominate the news cycle as he has in the primary election. But dominating the news cycle, he said, is a separate issue from winning it.

“More news cycles than not are going to be driven by news that Donald Trump makes,” he said. “That doesn’t mean he’s going to win the day… He can say provocative things as he has done throughout this campaign, and it will probably lead to news content. That does not mean he put himself in a better position to win the general election.”

The No. 1 Concern

Apart from being prepared for the day-to-day battle with Trump, Fallon said, is making sure that Democratic voters do not fall into the trap of complacency in assuming that victory in November is assured.

“The number one concern that we have as Democrats is complacency,” Fallon said. “If Democrats get complacent, we will play right into Donald Trump’s hands and we could end up with a catastrophe of Donald Trump occupying the Oval Office. So we go into this expecting a very tight contest, wire to wire.”

And while Clinton is still engaged in a primary election battle, with Sanders’ vowing to soldier on until the last of the Democratic primary voters have cast their votes, despite Clinton’s commanding lead in the delegate count, Fallon said that’s not a distraction from preparations underway for the general election.

“We’re capable of walking and chewing gum at the same time,” Fallon said, adding that the campaign has already begun hiring in key battleground states.

“We’re fully aware of the fact that Sen. Sanders is going to remain in this through the middle of June; that’s fine by us,” Fallon said. “We think we can operate on this dual track without a problem.”

Willing to Take Some Losses

That forward-thinking, general election mindset means spending less, and conceding some losses, in the primary battle still ongoing, he explained. Clinton’s loss to Sanders in Indiana is the most recent example.

“We made the decision to efficiently allocate resources, and that meant not going on the air at all in Indiana. You saw Senator Sanders spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 million there,” he said.

While efficient spending may have been one factor in the Clinton’s campaign decision not to advertise in Indiana, Fallon also conceded that Clinton is in a string of contests that are favorable to Sanders.

“We’re in a stretch of our calendar right now where some of the states are once again suitable for Sen Sanders,” he said.

But even with those losses, Fallon said, “the state of the race is unchanged.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Cleveland Could Still Be Exciting Without Contested Convention

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(CLEVELAND) — The excitement and trepidation over the possibility of a contested Republican convention has dissipated, but Donald Trump still promises to keep things lively.

Trump, who is now the presumptive GOP presidential nominee after his remaining competitors dropped out this week, said he has grand plans to spice up the Grand Old Party’s July convention.

“The site has been chosen and the arena is fine, but I’d want to have — you know, the last Republican convention was extraordinarily boring,” Trump told The New York Times Wednesday. “We’re going to come up with some things that will make it interesting and informative, but also smart and different.”

He went on to say that he would call upon talent-management agencies, naming IMG specifically, to help. The New York-based company did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

This isn’t the first time Trump has suggested using star power to bring in the masses.

“It’s very important to put some showbiz into a convention, otherwise people are going to fall asleep,” he said to The Washington Post last month.

Beyond the dates — July 18-21 — and the venue — the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland — convention specifics remain to be seen.

Looking back, location posed a problem in 2012 when Hurricane Isaac forced the GOP convention schedule to be compressed in Tampa, Florida. But there was plenty of time for a host of politicians to address the crowds before then-nominee Mitt Romney took the closing slot.

Over the course of the three days in Tampa, 10 of the 17 people who went on to run as candidates in this election cycle addressed the 2012 convention.

It’s not clear how many of Trump’s former rivals will take the stage this year, but because Gov. Chris Christie has publicly endorsed him and has been campaigning with Trump, there is a good chance he could make a re-appearance.

In 2012, organizers aired a pre-taped video featuring Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, though that is unlikely to happen again because the former presidents have announced they have no plans to endorse this year’s nominee.

Traditionally, the nominee’s spouse addresses the convention on the first night, so it is reasonable to expect Melania Trump to make an appearance.

The vice presidential hopeful addresses the convention on the third night, which happened with Dick Cheney in both 2000 and 2004, Sarah Palin in 2008 and Paul Ryan in 2012.

Trump’s campaign has confirmed to ABC News that it has started developing a list of possible vice president candidates, leaving them just over two months to cull the names and decide on a schedule.

Clint Eastwood made an interesting appearance at the 2012 convention shortly before Romney spoke on the last night, but given Trump’s connections, it may be fair to expect more than an actor – albeit an Academy Award-winner — and an empty chair on stage.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mitt Romney to Skip July’s GOP Convention

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC/DONNA SVENNEVIK(WASHINGTON) — The Republican National Convention in July is going to be missing some of the party’s most recognizable faces. All of the living former Republican nominees for president said they are skipping the Cleveland convention with the exception of Bob Dole, the 1996 GOP nominee.

An aide to Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP nominee, confirmed to ABC News that he “has no plans to attend the convention.”

Romney has been one of Trump’s most scathing critics. In March, he gave a speech urging the party to reject the real estate mogul, calling him “a phony, a fraud.” The news that he is not attending this year’s convention was first reported by The Washington Post.

On Wednesday, the last two Republican presidents, George W. Bush and his father, George H.W. Bush, also said they had no plans to back Donald Trump, the party’s presumptive nominee.

John McCain, the 2008 GOP nominee, told reporters last month that he was planning on skipping the convention to campaign for his re-election.

A spokeswoman for Dole told ABC News he will attend the RNC convention this July, but a representative for the former Kansas senator said his attendance should not be considered an endorsement.

“Sen. Dole plans to briefly attend the convention in Cleveland, yes — primarily for a luncheon hosted by our law firm, Alston & Bird,” Dole spokeswoman Marion Watkins told ABC News.

As for Dole throwing his support behind the nominee, Watkins responded, “We’ll have to wait and see how the convention plays out.”

In an interview with ABC’s Jon Karl in February, the 92-year-old Dole said Trump “could be” a good president, adding, “I’d be happy to be his adviser.” Dole had previously backed Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio.

The elder and younger Bushes were active in Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign until he left the race in February.

“President Bush does not plan to participate in or comment on the presidential campaign,” George W. Bush’s spokesman, Freddy Ford, said Wednesday.

Jim McGrath, spokesman for the elder Bush, said, “At age 91, President Bush is retired from politics. He naturally did a few things to help Jeb, but those were the ‘exceptions that proved the rule.'”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Trump’s New Finance Head Has History of Donating to Democrats

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Donald Trump’s new national finance chairman has at least one thing in common with the boss in that they both have a history of donating to politicians of different political stripes.

While his GOP rivals slammed Trump for having donated in the past to his likely competitor, Hillary Clinton, as well as other Democrats, the same can be said of the newest member of Team Trump.

Steven Mnuchin, whom the campaign Thursday introduced as Trump’s national finance chairman, entered the political realm after working as the chairman and CEO of a private investment firm called Dune Capital Management.

Mnuchin previously worked as a partner at Goldman Sachs and owned a holding company alongside other private investors.

A review of Mnuchin’s political donation history shows that he has made three times more donations to Democratic politicians than Republicans between 1997 and 2008.

Mnuchin made 35 donations to various Democratic politicians and 11 to Republican candidates, according to campaign finance records held by the Center for Responsive Politics.

He made other donations to Republican groups and PACs as well, but the recipients of those funds were not immediately clear.

Like Trump, Mnuchin has donated to Clinton in the past, making a total of five donations between 2000, when she was running for Senate, and 2007, when she started her first presidential run.

Mnuchin has also donated to Barack Obama, first when he was a senator in 2000 and then again in 2007, when Mnuchin donated the legal limit of $2,300 to Obama’s presidential campaign.

Some of his other Democratic recipients include former presidential candidate John Edwards, New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, and former New Jersey governor and fellow Goldman Sachs alum John Corzine.

On the Republican front, Mnuchin donated to former presidential candidate Mitt Romney, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former New Hampshire Sen. John E. Sununu.

Trump doesn’t seem bothered by his donation history.

“Steven is a professional at the highest level with an extensive and very successful financial background,” Trump said in a release announcing Mnuchin’s hiring. “He brings unprecedented experience and expertise to a fundraising operation that will benefit the Republican Party and ultimately defeat Hillary Clinton.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Behind the Scenes of Ted Cruz’s Final Days as a Presidential Candidate

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Ted Cruz’s staff and surrogates quietly slipped from around a blue curtain to watch the man they’d worked to elect to the nation’s highest office take the stage to announce it was all over.

Tears welled up in their eyes as some took video of the Texas senator — their boss — on their phones.

“From the beginning, I said that I would continue on as long as there was a viable path to victory. Tonight, I’m sorry to say it appears that path has been foreclosed,” Cruz said Tuesday night in Indianapolis. “We gave it everything we’ve got.”

Several supporters, many of whom had traveled from state to state volunteering for Cruz, yelled “No” and could be heard crying.

The speech capped off what had been a tumultuous few days for the Cruz campaign. Cruz made the decision to suspend his bid for the White House in the wee hours of Tuesday morning after meeting with his advisers, including his wife Heidi all night, according to a source familiar with the senator’s decision-making process.

After Cruz’s main rival, Donald Trump, went on morning television and attempted to link the senator’s father to John F. Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, Cruz walked into what would be his last press conference as a presidential candidate to deliver a clear message about Trump.

‘What I Really Think of Donald Trump’

“I’m going to do something I haven’t done for the entire campaign. For those of you all who have traveled with me all across the country, I’m going to tell you what I really think of Donald Trump. This man is a pathological liar. He doesn’t know the difference between truth and lies,” Cruz said in Evansville, Indiana, on Tuesday morning.

Cruz then labeled Trump a narcissist, serial philanderer and compared him to a villain in one of the Back to the Future movies.

Afterwards, the senator mingled with supporters at a barbecue restaurant. Some put their hands on his back to pray over him. When supporters encouraged him to fight on, the senator, speaking softly, repeated what he often said on the trail: “We’ll do it together.”

‘The Final Week’

While Cruz campaigned hard in his final week on the trail, greeting lines of supporters who wrapped around restaurants in small towns, he encountered ugly moments too. There was a child who yelled, “You Suck” and a tense encounter with Trump supporters in Marion, Indiana, who shouted at Cruz and chanted “Lyin’ Ted,” the nickname Trump branded Cruz. Cruz walked over to the men who stood outside a restaurant where the senator was meeting voters.

Rick Tyler, who was Cruz’s communications director until February and is now a political analyst, described Cruz’s encounter with the Trump supporter in Marion as emblematic of why the Cruz campaign was unable to stop Trump. In a sense, no one could have planned for the Trump phenomenon. Cruz had modeled his campaign imagining he would be the sole outsider battling an establishment Republican, not a real estate mogul and a reality TV star.

“The establishment candidate never really showed up as a front-runner. Instead, we got a celebrity. Trump used to call his supporters fans, and fans just behave differently than political supporters. Political supporters can be reasoned with, persuaded with overtime,” Tyler said.

When Cruz chose to engage those Trump supporters in Marion, he tried to reason with them and contrast himself with Trump and was met with insults.

Cruz was also never able to persuade a key component of the voting bloc that was pivotal to his strategy: Reagan Democrats.

“Ted Cruz really wanted those supporters and he didn’t capture them and Donald Trump to his credit did,” Tyler said. “The conservative movement should have been celebrating the fact that they defeated the establishment for the first time in a really long time yet many of them believed, as I do, that it will be for naught because, yes, we stuck it to the establishment. … But they didn’t allow a conservative to prevail.”

What Cruz Does Next

Pundits are pondering whether Cruz will ever support Trump as the GOP nominee. On the trail, Cruz has refused to answer that question, saying he wouldn’t have to because he would ultimately be the nominee.

“I don’t know that Ted Cruz could ever support Donald Trump because he crossed lines that you just don’t cross,” Tyler said.

Tyler said Cruz now carries the mantle for conservatives.

“I think Cruz really inherits being the voice of the conservative movement and you can say that Barry Goldwater gave voice to it, Ronald Reagan made it a friendly, happy place to be, Newt Gingrich used it to secure a majority in the congress … and nobody has really secured that mantle and I think Ted Cruz now has it,” Tyler said.

Last Words

For Cruz’s young staffers back in Houston, they got one more chance to hear from the boss they admire.

On Wednesday afternoon, Cruz spoke to his staff at his Houston headquarters. A person who attended the meeting said that several people cried.

Tyler described the culture of the Cruz campaign as a rarity in politics and an organization run so well that it was run like a “professional business.”

“Many campaigns, they’re very Machiavellian, there’s a lot of egos and there’s a lot of Machiavellian power structures and there was never that in our campaign,” Tyler said. “It didn’t come out because nobody felt threatened by anybody.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Michelle Obama, Dr. Jill Biden Announce US Companies to Hire 110,000 Veterans, Military Spouses

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal on Thursday highlighting the latest push for their Joining Forces program, announcing that at least 40 U.S. companies will pledge to hire 110,000 military veterans and spouses.

The leading women note that American companies often solicit applications for technology-related jobs from world-renowned institutions like Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Caltech or Stanford, or other highly-regarded universities and community colleges. “For too long, though, another source of talent has been largely overlooked,” they write, “despite producing many of America’s most talented technology professionals.”

“On land and in the air, under the sea and out in space, America has the most technologically advanced armed forces in history,” the op-ed reads.

In the piece, Obama and Biden say that more than 40 American companies and organizations will vow to hire more than 110,000 veterans military spouses, and will train more than 60,000 of them.

The First and Second Ladies launched Joining Forces in 2011 in an effort to help veterans get hired. Since then, more than 1.2 million veterans and military spouses have already been hired or trained, and the unemployment rate for veterans is lower than the national average.

Amazon will pledge to hire 25,000 veterans and military staff, the largest commitment announced by a single company on Thursday. The Aerospace-Defense sector, which includes Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, among others, will hire a total of 30,000 veterans, while AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon will hire a combined 25,000 veterans.

Other companies involved in Thursday’s announcement include Accenture, Dell, Hewlett Packard, JPMorgan Chase, Tesla, Intuit, SpaceX and Samsung.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Nebraska Senator Calls for Drafting of Third Party Candidate

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Drew Angerer/Getty Images(OMAHA, Neb.) — Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., took to Facebook on Wednesday to call for the drafting of a third-party candidate for President, decrying the current front-runners, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, as “dishonest.”

The post, Sasse writes, is directed towards those who find Trump and Clinton “dishonest” and believe they “have little chance of leading America forward,” and not for any “rare souls who genuinely believe Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are honorable people.”

Sasse writes that he has received numerous voicemails from “party bosses and politicos telling me that ‘although Trump is terrible,’ we ‘have to’ support him, ‘because the only choice is Trump or Hillary.'” Sasse openly questions the reality of that choice, listing ten observations about the current election cycle.

“Washington isn’t fooling anyone,” he writes, “neither political party works.” Both parties, he adds, “bicker like children about tiny things, and yet they can’t even identify the biggest issues we face.”

“As a result, normal Americans don’t like either party,” Sasse says, and “young people despise the two parties even more than the general electorate.”

Sasse goes on to predict that the two national political parties will “come apart,” saying that “it might not happen fully in 2016…but when people’s needs aren’t being met, they ultimately find other solutions.”

Pointing to the negative favorability ratings of both Clinton and Trump, Sasse says “there are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two ‘leaders.'”

So, Sasse says, “America should draft an honest leader who will focus on 70% solutions for the next four years.” He envisions a candidate who “hadn’t spent his/her life in politics either buying politicians or being bought…who didn’t want to stitch together a coalition based on anger, but wanted to take a whole nation forward…who pledged to serve for only one term, as a care-taker problem-solver for the messy moment…[and] who knew that Washington isn’t competent to micromanage the free people, but instead wanted to SERVE by focusing on 3 or 4 big national problems.”

Among the national problems Sasse highlights in his post are national security, budget and entitlement reform, education and ending incumbency protections to push career politicians towards retirement.

But Sasse hints that he wouldn’t be interested in being that choice, saying that “such a leader should be able to campaign 24/7 for the next six months” and “therefore he/she likely can’t be an engaged parent with little kids,” and that he isn’t interested in “an ideological purity test, because even a genuine consensus candidate would almost certainly be more conservative than either of the two dishonest liberals now leading the two national parties.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Nebraska Senator Calls for Drafting of Third Party Presidential Candidate

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Drew Angerer/Getty Images(OMAHA, Neb.) — Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., took to Facebook on Wednesday to call for the drafting of a third-party candidate for President, decrying the current front-runners, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, as “dishonest.”

The post, Sasse writes, is directed towards those who find Trump and Clinton “dishonest” and believe they “have little chance of leading America forward,” and not for any “rare souls who genuinely believe Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are honorable people.”

Sasse writes that he has received numerous voicemails from “party bosses and politicos telling me that ‘although Trump is terrible,’ we ‘have to’ support him, ‘because the only choice is Trump or Hillary.'” Sasse openly questions the reality of that choice, listing ten observations about the current election cycle.

“Washington isn’t fooling anyone,” he writes, “neither political party works.” Both parties, he adds, “bicker like children about tiny things, and yet they can’t even identify the biggest issues we face.”

“As a result, normal Americans don’t like either party,” Sasse says, and “young people despise the two parties even more than the general electorate.”

Sasse goes on to predict that the two national political parties will “come apart,” saying that “it might not happen fully in 2016…but when people’s needs aren’t being met, they ultimately find other solutions.”

Pointing to the negative favorability ratings of both Clinton and Trump, Sasse says “there are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two ‘leaders.'”

So, Sasse says, “America should draft an honest leader who will focus on 70% solutions for the next four years.” He envisions a candidate who “hadn’t spent his/her life in politics either buying politicians or being bought…who didn’t want to stitch together a coalition based on anger, but wanted to take a whole nation forward…who pledged to serve for only one term, as a care-taker problem-solver for the messy moment…[and] who knew that Washington isn’t competent to micromanage the free people, but instead wanted to SERVE by focusing on 3 or 4 big national problems.”

Among the national problems Sasse highlights in his post are national security, budget and entitlement reform, education and ending incumbency protections to push career politicians towards retirement.

But Sasse hints that he wouldn’t be interested in being that choice, saying that “such a leader should be able to campaign 24/7 for the next six months” and “therefore he/she likely can’t be an engaged parent with little kids,” and that he isn’t interested in “an ideological purity test, because even a genuine consensus candidate would almost certainly be more conservative than either of the two dishonest liberals now leading the two national parties.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Nebraska Senator Calls for Drafting of ‘Adult’ Presidential Candidate

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Drew Angerer/Getty Images(OMAHA, Neb.) — Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., took to Facebook on Wednesday to call for the drafting of a third-party candidate for President, decrying the current front-runners, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, as “dishonest.”

The post, Sasse writes, is directed towards those who find Trump and Clinton “dishonest” and believe they “have little chance of leading America forward,” and not for any “rare souls who genuinely believe Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are honorable people.”

Sasse writes that he has received numerous voicemails from “party bosses and politicos telling me that ‘although Trump is terrible,’ we ‘have to’ support him, ‘because the only choice is Trump or Hillary.'” Sasse openly questions the reality of that choice, listing ten observations about the current election cycle.

“Washington isn’t fooling anyone,” he writes, “neither political party works.” Both parties, he adds, “bicker like children about tiny things, and yet they can’t even identify the biggest issues we face.”

“As a result, normal Americans don’t like either party,” Sasse says, and “young people despise the two parties even more than the general electorate.”

Sasse goes on to predict that the two national political parties will “come apart,” saying that “it might not happen fully in 2016…but when people’s needs aren’t being met, they ultimately find other solutions.”

Pointing to the negative favorability ratings of both Clinton and Trump, Sasse says “there are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two ‘leaders.'”

So, Sasse says, “America should draft an honest leader who will focus on 70% solutions for the next four years.” He envisions a candidate who “hadn’t spent his/her life in politics either buying politicians or being bought…who didn’t want to stitch together a coalition based on anger, but wanted to take a whole nation forward…who pledged to serve for only one term, as a care-taker problem-solver for the messy moment…[and] who knew that Washington isn’t competent to micromanage the free people, but instead wanted to SERVE by focusing on 3 or 4 big national problems.”

Among the national problems Sasse highlights in his post are national security, budget and entitlement reform, education and ending incumbency protections to push career politicians towards retirement.

But Sasse hints that he wouldn’t be interested in being that choice, saying that “such a leader should be able to campaign 24/7 for the next six months” and “therefore he/she likely can’t be an engaged parent with little kids,” and that he isn’t interested in “an ideological purity test, because even a genuine consensus candidate would almost certainly be more conservative than either of the two dishonest liberals now leading the two national parties.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mitch McConnell to Support Trump, Says Likely Nominee Has ‘Obligation’ to Unite GOP

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Drew Angerer/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will support the likely Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, the Kentucky senator said in a written statement Wednesday night.

“I have committed to supporting the nominee chosen by Republican voters,” McConnell said, “and Donald Trump, the presumptive nominee, is now on the verge of clinching that nomination.” McConnell has been a leader of what has been referred to as the Republican “establishment,” and has previously told Republican Congressional candidates that they should avoid tying themselves to Trump if need be.

“Republicans are committed to preventing what would be a third term of Barack Obama and restoring economic and national security after eight years of a Democrat in the White House,” McConnell said. “As the presumptive nominee, [Trump] now has the opportunity and the obligation to unite our party around our goals.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Former Utah Sen. Bob Bennett Dead at 82

Posted on: May 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

MANPREET ROMANA/AFP/Getty Images(SALT LAKE CITY) — Former Utah Senator Bob Bennett has died at the age of 82.

Bennett served as senator from 1993 through 2011. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in February 2015, ABC News affiliate ABC4 Utah said, and suffered a stroke in April that left him paralyzed.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert issued a statement calling Bennett “a tremendous public servant who faithfully represented our state.”

Statement on the passing of former #Utah Senator Bob Bennett: #utpol pic.twitter.com/MxccY2L6NI

— Gov. Gary Herbert (@GovHerbert) May 5, 2016

“A born leader, [Bennett’s] passion for public policy…guided his lifetime of service and civic involvement,” Herbert said. “Above all, he was a man of integrity who loved his family and the people he served.”

Former presidential nominee Mitt Romney, himself a former Utah resident, called Bennett a friend, and mentioned Bennett’s involvement in Salt Lake City’s bid for the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, which Romney helped head up. “His keen mind made him a leading figure in the Senate on issues as disparate and far-reaching as emerging technologies and federal budgets,” Romney said in a statement on Facebook. “What I will remember most about Senator Bennett is his unwavering commitment to principle; his is an example of integrity and character that will long live in the memories of all who knew him.”

Utah Senator Orrin Hatch said that Bennett “served our state and the nation with unwavering devotion,” calling him “widely respected as a wise and thoughtful leader committed to finding innovative solutions to the most difficult challenges of the day.”

Senator Hatch's statement on the passing of his former colleague and dear friend Senator Bob Bennett. #utpol pic.twitter.com/UEpab7qP8J

— Senator Hatch Office (@SenOrrinHatch) May 5, 2016

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Bush 41, 43 Do Not Plan to Endorse Donald Trump

Posted on: May 4th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Brett Coomer/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — President George H.W. Bush and his son President George W. Bush have no plans to endorse Donald Trump, their spokespeople told ABC News.

“President Bush does not plan to participate in or comment on the presidential campaign,” spokesman Freddy Ford said.

Jim McGrath, spokesman for the elder Bush, said the 41st president is out of politics.

“At age 91, President Bush is retired from politics,” McGrath said in an email. “He naturally did a few things to help Jeb, but those were the ‘exceptions that proved the rule.'”

Jeb Bush, former Florida governor and son and brother of the former presidents, left the race in February.

The Texas Tribune was the first to report the news.

This is the first time in the last five election cycles that Bush 41 has not endorsed the GOP nominee.

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