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Biden says he agrees with a $15 minimum wage for campaign workers

By Sean Sullivan July 21 at 6:00 AM

LAS VEGAS — Joe Biden said Saturday that he thinks campaign workers should make at least $15 an hour, but he declined to weigh in on the standoff over pay between unionized field staffers and management on Democratic presidential rival Bernie Sanders’s team.

“I think so, yes,” Biden told reporters when asked whether $15 an hour should be the minimum wage for campaign staff. Asked whether his field organizers are being paid that wage, the former vice president replied, “The answer is I think that’s true but I gotta double-check it,” and glanced at a nearby aide.

Asked for more clarity, Biden spokesman Andrew Bates said that interns on the campaign are paid at a rate of $15 an hour and that field organizers are paid a salary of $4,000 a month. The latter comes out to $48,000 a year.

The hours that organizers work each week vary, Bates said. During a 60-hour workweek, which is not atypical for presidential campaign organizers, they would be making the equivalent of $16.67 an hour.

Biden declined to offer an opinion about the recent back-and-forth between the Vermont senator’s field staff and Sanders’s campaign manager Faiz Shakir, which The Washington Post reported on Thursday.


Migrant mental health crisis spirals in ICE detention facilities

ICE struggles to handle migrants with serious mental illness.

By RENUKA RAYASAM 07/21/2019 06:54 AM EDT

Federal inspectors visiting a California migrant detention center made a shocking discovery last year: Detainees had made nooses from bedsheets in 15 of 20 cells in the facility they visited.

The inspection revealed the extent of a largely unseen mental health crisis within the growing population of migrants who are being held in detention centers in border states. President Donald Trump’s 2017 decision to reverse a policy that encouraged releasing vulnerable individuals while they await deportation hearings has left U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement unequipped to deal with conditions ranging from anxiety to schizophrenia.

One estimate puts the number of detainees with mental illnesses between 3,000 and 6,000. Some advocates and lawyers who work with migrants in the facilities say it’s probably more. Many of the migrants with mental illness are not stable enough to participate in their own legal proceedings, so they languish in detention.

While treatment of immigrants has become an explosive national issue, the plight of mentally ill migrants has scarcely registered.

“This is a system that, for a long time, has failed to understand, neglected, and even ignored the mental health needs of folks caught up in it,” said Elizabeth Jordan, director of the Immigration Detention Accountability Project at the Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center. “But under this administration ... it has gotten so much worse.”


Warren Outpaces Biden to Build Iowa Ground Game

Barbie Latza Nadeau

Updated 07.20.19 6:14PM ET / Published 07.20.19 10:34AM ET

July 20, 2019 at 3:33 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard

Bloomberg: “An elected Democratic official in the state, speaking on condition of anonymity, complained that if Biden has a campaign in Iowa, he doesn’t know who’s working on it or how many.”

“In contrast, Elizabeth Warren, who jumped into the race four months before the former vice president, has built one of the most robust operations in the state, positioning her to capitalize on her surging national poll numbers and her steady rise in Iowa, Democratic operatives say.”



Fox News Pundit Geraldo Rivera Says Trump's Words 'Made it Impossible' to Deny Racism

Anna Kaplan
Published 07.20.19 5:44PM ET

Fox News correspondent and longtime Trump ally Geraldo Rivera said President Trump’s attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color have “made it impossible” for him to defend the president against claims of racism. “As much as I have denied it and averted my eyes from it, this latest incident made it impossible,” Rivera told The New York Times. “My friendship with the president has cost me friendships, it has cost me schisms in the family, my wife and I are constantly at odds about the president,” he said. “I do insist that he’s been treated unfairly. But the unmistakable words, the literal words he said, is an indication that the critics were much more right than I.” Trump sparked outrage when he appeared to reference Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) in a tweet urging them “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came” in a tweet last Sunday.

Read it at The New York Times



2020 Democrats Are Starting to Turn Obama's Legacy Against Biden

The former VP has tied himself closely to the president he served. His primary opponents are trying to complicate that.

Gideon Resnick
Political Reporter

Published 07.21.19 5:09 AM ET

Former Vice President Joe Biden has used Barack Obama’s beloved status among Democratic voters to insulate him from criticism from the massive field of candidates jockeying to be the next president.

But in recent weeks, the Democratic frontrunner has had that legacy used against him, with his competitors pointing the to shortcomings of the last Democratic administration as evidence that Biden’s not up to the task of leading the next one.

“Barack Obama, personally, is incredibly popular among Democratic primary voters,” Karthik Ganapathy, a progressive consultant now running his own firm, told The Daily Beast. “And also at the same time, there’s a growing recognition that income and wealth inequality got worse under his eight years, the climate crisis got worse during his eight years, deportations went up during his time in office, and so on.”

The idea that the Obama legacy would be anything other than a massive positive for Biden as he navigates the 2020 Democratic party has been treated as indisputable within Democratic circles. And for good reason. A CNN poll taken in early 2018 found that he had a 97 percent favorable rating among Democrats.


Giuliani: Mueller should not testify before Congress

BY TAL AXELROD - 07/21/19 07:01 AM EDT

Rudy Giuliani, a personal attorney for President Trump, said former special counsel Robert Mueller should not testify before Congress ahead of a speaking to two House committees this coming Wednesday.

“He shouldn’t really [testify]. He already put out his report. He made his 10 minute statement and then said he wasn’t going to talk about it anymore because it’s not proper,” Giuliani said Sunday on John Catsimatidis’ radio show, referring to a press conference Mueller gave on his report that he said would be his final word on his two-year probe.

“But somebody must’ve persuaded him that he should comment some more. He’s already commented more than any prosecutor has ever commented about a case he didn’t bring. Let’s see what he says.”

Mueller is slated to appear Wednesday before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees to testify about his two-year probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice into subsequent investigations.


Ocasio-Cortez calls for '9/11-style commission' to investigate Trump family separation policy

BY JUSTIN WISE - 07/21/19 07:13 AM EDT

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) on Saturday called for a "9/11-style commission" to investigate the effects of the Trump administration policy that led to family separations at the southern border.

The freshman lawmaker made the demand while speaking at an immigration town hall in her home district, according The Guardian. Ocasio-Cortez, who has become a favorite target of President Trump's, said if the Democrats win back the Senate and White House the government should convene a special commission to investigate family separations.

“The 9/11 commission, they were charged with the investigating and making sure they dug out every nook and cranny of what happened and how it happened in our system," she said. "And I think that that kind of study is what’s going to be required in order to reunite as many children with their parents as possible. That’s the work that we have to do.”

The 9/11 commission, also known as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the U.S., was launched in November 2002 to probe the "circumstances surrounding" the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Ocasio-Cortez added that the U.S. now has a "lifelong" commitment to the children it separated from their parents, adding she believes "we have responsibility to provide mental healthcare services to those children for the rest of their lives.”


U.S. has 'bigger problems' than plastic straws - Trump

JULY 19, 2019 / 7:17 PM / UPDATED AN HOUR AGO

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - With plastic straw bans gaining popularity to protect the environment, President Donald Trump on Friday posed the question: What about other plastic dining items?

“I do think we have bigger problems than plastic straws,” he told reporters on the White House South Lawn prior to leaving for a weekend in New Jersey.

On a 96-degree day, Trump warmed to the subject.

“You know, it’s interesting about plastic straws: So, you have a little straw, but what about the plates, the wrappers, and everything else that are much bigger and they’re made of the same material?” he pondered.

“Everybody focuses on the straws. There’s a lot of other things to focus on,” he added.


2 Republican senators introduce resolution to label antifa as domestic terrorists

Source: The Hill

BY ZACK BUDRYK - 07/21/19 09:02 AM EDT

Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) have introduced a nonbinding resolution that would label antifascist activists known as antifa as “domestic terrorists,” according to the Washington Post.

“Antifa are terrorists, violent masked bullies who ‘fight fascism’ with actual fascism, protected by Liberal privilege,” Cassidy said in a statement. “Bullies get their way until someone says no. Elected officials must have courage, not cowardice, to prevent terror.”

While there is no specific crime called “domestic terrorism,” applying such a designation allows law enforcement to look into a suspect’s known associates and affiliations.

While conservatives and centrists have long blasted antifa activists, who have been involved in street brawls with right-wing groups and left conservative journalist Andy Ngo bloodied in Portland, Ore., last month, critics of the measure have cited antifa’s lack of a formal organizational structure and said this could open the door to overly-broad enforcement, according to the Post.

Read more: https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/454038-2-republican-senators-introduce-resolution-to-label-antifa-as-domestic

Cruz Sees 50-50 Chance of Trump's Re-Election

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