🇺🇸 Pence's Popped Presidential Plans
Plus, Moose drop-off.
Good morning, and happy Wednesday. An unlikely group of hero farmers are stepping up to save an endangered species of birds in Australia.
Plus, an elementary school in Massachusetts got an unexpected visitor during its morning drop-off.
Also, missed the boat on NVIDIA? Here’s another company leveraging AI to capitalize on what could be a $1 trillion market in less than a decade…
Left: “History repeating itself”: How the Israel-Hamas war is fueling hate against Muslims and Jews Fabiola Cineas, Vox
Left: Solidarity Between BLM and Palestine Has Deep Roots Kali Holloway, The Nation
Left: Liberals, Start Giving Biden Some Damn Credit Michael Tomasky, The New Republic
Right: Calls for a Cease-Fire Are Calls for Israel To Surrender Benjamin Netanyahu, The Wall Street Journal
Right: The Agonizing Drift Toward Cease-Fire David Dayen, American Prospect
Right: New Poll Exposes Flaw in Trump Opponents' Plan Byron York, Washington Examiner
Israel Strikes Refugees, China Meeting Set, Diplomatic Ties Severed
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US: FBI Director Wray warns terror threat to Americans at 'whole other level' amid Hamas-Israel conflict (FOX News)
US: Senate confirms Jack Lew as US ambassador to Israel as war rages in Middle East (NBC News)
US: Anti-war protesters interrupt Antony Blinken at Senate hearing (BBC)
World: Israel shot down a ballistic missile fired from Yemen, US officials say (NBC News)
World: Biden will meet with China’s Xi Jinping next month, White House says (CNBC)
World: Bolivia severs diplomatic ties with Israel, citing 'crimes against humanity' (Reuters)
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Pence's Popped Presidential Plans
Over the weekend, former Vice President Mike Pence suspended his 2024 presidential campaign. The GOP hopeful unexpectedly announced his decision during a speech at the Republican Jewish Coalition Conference in Las Vegas. Pence, who has struggled with fundraising recently, reportedly was concerned he would not qualify for the next GOP debate. All eight major Republican presidential candidates were present at the conference, where Pence made his announcement.
Reporting from the Left: Pence suspends campaign for president (CNN)
Reporting from the Right: After Pence ends 2024 bid, GOP insiders predict more to follow (FOX News)
From The Flag: Pence, who served as Vice President for current GOP front-runner, Former President Donald Trump, broke from Trump’s platform in 2020, condemning Trump’s January 6, 2021 course of action, and taking different stances towards abortion, Social Security, and Medicare. With that said, Pence has vowed to back the eventual GOP nominee. Here’s what both sides are saying about Pence’s decision and the narrowing GOP race.
This Was Bound to Happen
“Pence had focused on evangelical-rich Iowa as his path to the nomination. But he could never seem to draw a crowd.”
Despite his position in the former administration, Pence’s exit from the campaign is a stark reminder that Trump has control of the GOP.
“After seven years in Donald Trump's shadow, and his presidential dream deferred, the former vice president no longer needs to pander for votes.”
It ended in Sin City. But Mike Pence’s campaign was DOA for months. Adam Wren, POLITICO: “Pence had been a member of the conservative movement for nearly two generations… But Trump — and Trumpism — would ultimately be Pence’s undoing… On Saturday, the gasps in the crowd inside the Venetian resort on the Las Vegas strip belied the reality that all but he and his closest advisers could see coming for weeks, if not months. … At times, Pence seemed to be running more for his place in the history books than the Iowa caucuses, defending his resistance to Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 election and criticizing Trump and other GOP candidates polling above him on everything from their positions on Social Security reform to the war in Ukraine. … In some ways, it was surprising that Pence lasted as long as he did, given the hostility he endured from Trump’s most ardent supporters. … Pence’s presence may be felt in ways more profound than an endorsement. He will likely be a prominent figure in Trump’s Jan. 6 trial, set to begin March 4, 2024, the day before Super Tuesday.”
Pence's early exit from the presidential campaign offers a reminder of Trump's grip on the GOP Jill Colvin and Michelle L. Price, The Washington Post: “Pence tried to thread what often seemed like an impossibly fine needle. He ran on the record of what he fondly referred to as the Trump-Pence administration while also criticizing his former boss. He accused Trump of abandoning conservative principles on issues such as abortion and of putting himself above the Constitution to stay in power. During his campaign launch event, Pence addressed Jan. 6 head-on, defending his actions and saying Trump disqualified himself during that period. … That never translated into support from conservative primary voters, who in polls and focus groups made clear they preferred other options. … All the while, Trump only grew stronger, building his support even as he confronted multiple criminal indictments, including cases in Georgia and Washington tied to his efforts to overturn the election.”
One more opinion piece from the Left: Mike Pence is free now Hayes Brown, MSNBC
Mixed: A Righteous Campaign vs. Flawed Campaign
The Pence campaign may have been a long shot, but it was run with integrity, which is more than can be said for many of the other GOP candidates who also need to remove themselves from contention.
Pence took a challenging approach by running against the failings of Trump while also promoting the administration’s accomplishments.
“After a lackluster campaign, and perhaps even before he announced it, many wondered what the campaign’s purpose was and who convinced Pence that he might have had any chance.”
Requiem for Mike Pence Jeffrey Blehar, National Review: “I asked Pence then to be honest with himself about his reasons for getting into this election. My hope was that, knowing the matter of January 6 could not be avoided, he would at least grasp the nettle directly and manfully, and take credit for doing the right thing. Pence, despite his long career in politics, remains mostly a cipher to the American public, his legislative and gubernatorial career having been subsumed by his most recent role as Trump’s vice president. So the question remained open: What kind of man would he prove to be, really? The answer has been given by the forthright manner in which Pence ran his race and the dignified way in which he left it two days ago. To be sure, his hand was forced by both poor fundraising and flagging polling numbers, but the same can currently be said for many other bitter-enders who remain in a field that desperately needs culling.
Why Mike Pence failed to make inroads in Trump's party W. James Antle III, Washington Examiner: “Former Vice President Mike Pence bowed to the inevitable when he dropped his bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, as he was unable to resolve the central dilemma of his campaign. … Pence was running as a repudiation of former President Donald Trump’s changes to the Republican Party while his service as Trump’s vice president was the main reason for primary voters to want to send him to the White House. … Yet at the same time, Pence was running on the accomplishments of the ‘Trump-Pence administration.’ It was a difficult needle to thread. And ultimately, Pence couldn’t thread it. … Jan. 6, when Pence rebuffed his boss on Electoral College certification as “Hang Mike Pence” rioters stormed the Capitol, is an event without precedent. Unfortunately for Pence, Trump retained a hold on the GOP primary electorate afterward that may not rival Reagan’s but certainly approached it.”
One more opinion piece from the Right: Mike Pence’s inane presidential campaign Christopher Tremoglie, Washington Examiner
Trump’s Lead Widens
The latest polling, conducted after Pence dropped out has Trump with 61% of Republican primary voters, a significant jump from the 49% he held at this time in 2022. During the same period last year, Pence's support stood at just 9%, and he was polling at approximately 5% before ending his campaign.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis maintains his runner-up status with 13% of the vote, though a notable decline from last year’s 24%. Former Ambassador Nikki Haley has gained some steam, rising from fifth (3%) to third place with 7% of the vote (Morning Consult).
Who do you believe is likely to suspend their campaign next?
GOP primary voters' polling numbers included from Morning Consult.
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Adams Upsizes, Black Market Balsamic, Yawn Epidemic
On This Day in 1800: In the last year of his only term as president, President John Adams moved into the newly constructed President’s House, the original name for what is known today as the White House.
Today I learned that yawns are actually “contagious” as the chances of yawning increase by six times after seeing someone else yawn.