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  • 🇺🇸 Debating to Debate

🇺🇸 Debating to Debate

Plus, we might be levitating soon.

The Flag

Good morning, and happy Friday. Teamwork makes the dream work! A group of lifeguards in Florida were captured on drone video over the weekend forming a human chain to rescue a boogie boarder from a rip current pulling him out to sea.

Plus, a new discovery in South Korea is straight out of sci fi — it can make any device levitate.

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TRENDING

Right: The 'Consensus' on Climate Change Is 'Manufactured' John Stossel, New York Post

QUICK CLICKS

Hawaii Devastated, Trial Date Proposed, Space Tourism Launches

US: Maui surveys the burned wreckage caused by the deadliest US wildfire in years (AP)

US: Special counsel proposes a trial date for Trump Jan. 6 case (NPR)

US: Biden asks Congress for more than $13B to support Ukraine and $12B for disaster fund (AP)

US: Trump and one co-defendant plead not guilty to latest charges in classified docs case (CNN)

Business: Coach owner Tapestry to acquire Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo parent Capri Holdings for $8.5 billion (CNBC)

Business: Virgin Galactic launches first tourism mission after decades of promises (CNN)

World: Biden reaches $6B deal to free Americans in exchange for jailed Iranians (FOX News)

World: Ecuador presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio assassinated at campaign event (CNN)

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2024

Debating to Debate

On August 23, Fox News will host the first debate of the 2024 presidential race in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Former president and candidate Donald Trump has repeatedly indicated he may not participate in the upcoming Republican primary debates.

Reporting from the Left: Trump says he won’t sign RNC loyalty pledge ahead of first debate (POLITICO)

Reporting from the Right: Trump not willing to sign GOP loyalty pledge ahead of debate (FOX News)

From The Flag: Some Republican contenders like Chris Christie have attempted to goad Trump to the debate stage. While Trump has casually considered attending and asked crowds at rallies if he should, he has also explicitly stated he will not pledge to support the Republican candidate should he lose the nomination. Here’s how both sides are responding.

LEFT-LEANING SENTIMENT

Good Chance Trump Will Debate

  • Some Republican consultants see mounting indictments and high-stakes drama as motivation for Trump to show up on the debate stage.

  • Since FOX News is airing the debate, the network has been working hard to convince Trump to attend the debate to boost their ratings.

  • Trump is reveling in the mystery of whether or not he will be at the debate and is using the “will he won’t he” question to fundraise.

Donald Trump’s Legal Peril May Propel Him Into the GOP Debate: “He Wants to Be Center Stage” Gabriel Sherman, Vanity Fair: “But according to two high-level Republican consultants, Trump’s calculus could be evolving, as his legal exposure has gotten worse. … Trump has publicly downplayed the severity of these indictments, but in private, he has reportedly grown increasingly angry and rattled by the mounting criminal charges. … ‘He wants to be center stage,’ one of the consultants told Vanity Fair. Trump’s walking onstage amid existential legal peril would create the sort of high drama that thrills his voters. The debate would also put Trump, a skilled verbal brawler, in an arena where he could rhetorically batter the other candidates. ‘No one there will handle him well at all. Each of the candidates [are] predictable,’ the second consultant said. Multiple sources close to Trump, however, cautioned that nothing has changed about his intention to skip the debate. ‘I don’t think he will participate,’ a senior Trump adviser said. The Trump campaign did not respond to a request for comment.”

‘Fox & Friends’ Reduced to Begging Trump to Attend Fox’s GOP Debate Justin Baragona, Daily Beast: “The hosts of Donald Trump’s longtime favorite morning show are now practically begging the former president on Wednesday to attend the first Republican primary debate, telling him via their airwaves not to ‘take the voters for granted’ and show up at the Fox News-hosted event. Fox & Friends’ plea to the 2024 GOP frontrunner is just the latest stab in the conservative cable giant’s full-court press to convince Trump to attend— despite his continual threats to not take part—and hopefully deliver Fox News the huge viewership it so desires. … In a seemingly naked attempt to curry Trump’s favor, the Fox & Friends crew took swipes at Mike Pence for his widely mocked campaign ad in which he pretends to fill up a pickup truck’s gas tank. … Fox News hosts and commentators have picked up the pace in recent days in terms of trying to convince Trump to attend, growing increasingly desperate as the event approaches.”

One more opinion piece from the Left: Will he or won't he? Donald Trump polls voters on whether to debate his Republican rivals David Jackson, USA Today

RIGHT-LEANING SENTIMENT

Mixed: He Should. He Shouldn’t. Doesn’t Matter.

  • Trump should debate because not showing up would look weak and give his opponents the chance to criticize him without him being able to directly respond.

  • Trump shouldn’t debate because he’ll soak up the attention, and the focus should on Biden’s failings and the problems facing Americans.

  • According to Trump at an Alabama fundraising event, he’s already won: “We’ve already defeated the Republicans.”

Trump Plays Hamlet Ahead of the Republican Primary Debate Karl Rove, Wall Street Journal: “Mr. Trump’s failure to show up could be taken poorly. It could look like a sign of weakness (he wasn’t willing to defend himself) or overconfidence (he’s taking voters for granted). Voters could also see it as a petty snub to Fox News, whose executives he describes as a “group of MAGA hating Globalist RINOs” who are “aiding & abetting the destruction of America.” (I am a Fox News contributor.) With Mr. Trump absent, his opponents would have an easier time turning the conversation away from the former president’s grievances and fabrications and toward the issues Republicans really care about. There are a lot of GOP voters still kicking tires. Though a July 27 New York Times/Siena Poll found 54% of Republicans support Mr. Trump now, only 52% of his supporters say they are committed—which comes to roughly 28% of the GOP electorate. That’s more than any other candidate but hardly a majority.”

A case for Trump to not debate Star Parker, Times-Republican: “When only 19 percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the direction of the country, and considering that that percentage has been over 40 percent only once in the last 15 years, it is reasonable to assume that Americans, justifiably, are not pleased with the current state of affairs. … We need to fix our nation. The beginning of solving any problem is identifying and defining it properly and then soberly, step by courageous step, coming up with solutions. This is what the 2024 election should be about. We have two parties with very different views of the world. The pathologies I described above are readily attributed to the party that now controls the White House. … Trump on the stage in Milwaukee means the debates will be about him when they should be about our national agenda and solutions that the other seven candidates propose.”

One more opinion piece from the Right: Trump has a 2024 message for the GOP: 'We've already defeated the Republicans' W. James Antle III, Washington Examiner

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FLAG FINDS

Debate Polling Requirements

Seven Republican presidential candidates have, as of Sunday, met the polling requirements to appear on the August debate stage following new polling from Fox Business in Iowa and South Carolina.

In addition to former President Donald Trump, the following candidates have each reached 1% or higher in at least two qualifying national polls and two qualifying state polls from separate states, a requirement set by the Republican National Committee (CNN):

  • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis

  • Tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy

  • Former Vice President Mike Pence

  • Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley

  • South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott

  • Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

Should Trump participate in the GOP presidential debate?

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WATERCOOLER

Watts Rebellion, Hidden Files, Certified Pirate

Burning buildings in the Watts neighborhood.

On This Day in 1965: In the predominantly black Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles, racial tension reaches a breaking point after a white policeman struck a black motorist suspected of drunken driving in the face with a baton. A crowd of spectators gathered to watch the arrest and soon grew angry by what they believed to be an incident of racially motivated abuse by the police, leading to a week’s worth of riots and the city's worst unrest until the Rodney King riots of 1992.

Today I learned MIT will award a Certificate in Piracy if you take archery, pistols, sailing, and fencing as your required physical education classes.

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