The Past 24 Hours or So – Protests/Race Relations and Trump Administration News

Read Time: 4 Minutes

Protests/Race Relations 

  • A WWII-era Coast Guard ship named after the Supreme Court chief justice who penned the majority opinion in the Dred Scott ruling will be renamed.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter “Taney” was originally named to honor Roger B. Taney’s service as U.S. Treasury secretary. But Taney’s legacy is defined principally by his majority opinion in the 1857 ruling in Dred Scott v. Sanford, which said slaves were property and African Americans — whether enslaved or free — could not be U.S. citizens.

  • The Washington Redskins today announced a “thorough review” of the team’s name amid mounting pressure to make a change.
  • The Cleveland Indians released a statement that they are considering changing the name of the team. 
  • Police used smoke bombs to disperse Indigenous protesters who blocked a highway as Trump made his way to Mount Rushmore.
  • An Indiana Catholic diocese has suspended a priest from public ministry after he faced backlash for comparing the Black Lives Matter movement and demonstrators to “maggots and parasites.”

Father Theodore Rothrock of St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church in Carmel, Indiana, made the comparison in his weekly message on Sunday, The Indy Star reported.

“The only lives that matter are their own and the only power they seek is their own,” Rothrock wrote. “They are wolves in wolves clothing, masked thieves and bandits, seeking only to devour the life of the poor and profit from the fear of others. They are maggots and parasites at best, feeding off the isolation of addiction and broken families, and offering to replace current frustration and anxiety with more misery and greater resentment.” 

  • The Texas Tribune obtained, via a public information request, a voicemail of June 6, left several days after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott activated the Texas National Guard as some of the protests became violent.

In the voicemail conservative power broker Steve Hotze of Houston told Abbott’s chief of staff, Luis Saenz, “I want you to give a message to the governor. I want to make sure that he has National Guard down here and they have the order to shoot to kill if any of these son-of-a-bitch people start rioting like they have in Dallas, start tearing down businesses — shoot to kill the son of a bitches. That’s the only way you restore order. Kill ‘em. Thank you.”

  • Following the resignation of one of the officers involved, three Aurora, Colorado police officers were fired Friday. The four officers shared photographs they took of themselves re-enacting a chokehold officers used to subdue Elijah McClain who later died.

Jason Rosenblatt, who was among the officers who subdued McClain, was fired for responding “HaHa” after receiving the photo.

Vanessa Wilson, interim chief of police in the Denver suburb of Aurora, called the officers’ actions surrounding the death of Elijah McClain, who was unarmed, “reprehensible.” “I am disgusted to my core.”

  • President Trump on Friday during a Fourth of July event at Mount Rushmore lashed out at protesters calling for the removal of Confederate statues, accusing them of wanting to “overthrow the American Revolution” and fundamentally change the country adding that protestors’ goal is to “end America.”
  • “The violent mayhem we have seen in our streets and cities are run by liberal Democrats in every case is the predictable result of years of extreme indoctrination and bias in education, journalism and other cultural institutions,” Trump said. “Against every law of society and nature, our children are taught in school to hate their own country and to believe that the men and women who built it weren’t heroes, but villains. The radical view of American history is a web of lies.”
  • President Trump has unveiled an executive order to create a “National Garden of American Heroes” that will feature statues of prominent Americans in response to protesters calling for the removal of Confederate statues or statues of racist figures.

The executive order says the garden will include statues of John Adams, Susan B. Anthony, Clara Barton, Daniel Boone, Davy Crockett, Frederick Douglass, Amelia Earhart, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Martin Luther King Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, Jackie Robinson and Harriet Tubman, among others.

Administration News

  • The president’s arrival at his Sterling, VA country club marks the 365th day he has spent at one of his properties since assuming the office.
  • The Senate finalized passage of a sanctions bill to penalize China for its new national security law for Hong Kong that U.S. lawmakers say effectively ends the island’s autonomous legal status. The bill now heads to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it.
  • Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned he may skip a summit in Washington next week with President Trump and Mexico’s Andrés Manuel López Obrador over the Trump administration’s threats of tariffs and due to the coronavirus pandemic which is raging and seeing record-breaking days in the states.
  • “I have reviewed the classified information regarding bounties, upon which recent news reports are based. This information raises many questions and administration officials should come before the Senate and provide a classified briefing and answer questions from all members,” GOP Sen. Pat Toomey said, demanding a briefing on the controversial reports Russia has been targeting U.S. troops.
  • President Vladimir Putin on Friday mocked the U.S. embassy in Moscow for flying a rainbow flag to celebrate LGBT rights, suggesting it reflected the sexual orientation of its staff.
  • The Pentagon released a report claiming that the Russians have been working alongside the Taliban to drive US troops out of Afghanistan.

The report comes just days after the New York Times reported that Russian intelligence agents were paying bounties to Taliban-connected fighters for killing US troops.

“As of February, the Russian government was working with the central government, regional countries and the Taliban to gain increased influence in Afghanistan, expedite a US military withdrawal,” the report states.

The Pentagon report covers the time period between December 2019 and May 2020.

Sources:  ABC News, The Atlantic, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So

Read Time: 6 Minutes

Protests/Race Relations News

  • NYC Mayor de Blasio said “Black Lives Matter” will be painted on Manhattan’s 5th Ave. in “a matter of days.” 

Whenever President Trump comes back to New York, “he’ll get a message that he still doesn’t understand. Maybe seeing it outside his doorstep will help him get the point.”

  • “NYC is cutting Police $’s by ONE BILLION DOLLARS, and yet the @NYCMayor is going to paint a big, expensive, yellow Black Lives Matter sign on Fifth Avenue, denigrating this luxury Avenue. This will further antagonize New York’s Finest, who LOVE New York & vividly remember the….

….horrible BLM chant, “Pigs In A Blanket, Fry ‘Em Like Bacon”. Maybe our GREAT Police, who have been neutralized and scorned by a mayor who hates & disrespects them, won’t let this symbol of hate be affixed to New York’s greatest street. Spend this money fighting crime instead!”

  • President Trump has told people in recent days that he regrets following some of son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner’s political advice — including supporting criminal justice reform — and will stick closer to his own instincts, three people with direct knowledge of the president’s thinking tell Axios.

Behind the scenes: One person who spoke with the president interpreted his thinking this way: “No more of Jared’s woke shit.” Another said Trump has indicated that following Kushner’s advice has harmed him politically.

  • In response to this Axios report, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a statement, “President Trump is very proud of the historic work that he’s done to benefit all communities. The First Step Act made historic strides toward rectifying racial disparities in sentencing while his executive order to secure America’s streets works with our nation’s heroic police officers to ensure we have safe policing and safe communities.”
  • A vehicle carrying Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) on Tuesday hit a Des Moines Black Lives Matter protester who officials say intentionally stepped in front of its path.
  • Police in Seattle arrested thirteen people Wednesday as officers returned to a police precinct and an area of downtown that demonstrators had taken control of during protests last month following the police killing of George Floyd.

The arrests came after the mayor’s executive order directing all residents to vacate the area of downtown now known as the Capitol Hill Organized Protest zone.

  • Selwyn Jones, one of George Floyd’s uncles, is pushing officials in Gettysburg, South Dakota, to remove the Confederate battle flag from the local police department’s logo, and has inspired a petition with over 4,000 petitions calling for its removal.

The mayor has pushed back, however, saying it won’t be removed because “the liberals and the press telling us we have to change it. People here do not feel it’s racism.”

  • The House Armed Services Committee has approved an amendment to ban the display of the Confederate battle flag at all Pentagon property, which includes bases, workspaces and front porches of military housing.
  • Dozens of investment firms and shareholders are calling on Nike, FedEx and PepsiCo to end their business relationships with the Washington Redskins unless the team changes its name.
  • Several students protested outside a Montclair, NJ woman’s home after footage went viral of her accusing her Black neighbors of building a stone patio without a permit and eventually calling the police.
  • The Los Angeles City Council voted to reduce their police department budget by $150 million amid local and nationwide activists’ calls to defund the police, the Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday.

The council voted 12 to 2 to bring the Los Angeles Police Department workforce down to 9,757 officers by next summer. The last time that level of police staffing was seen in the city was 2008.

  • The Los Angeles Board of Education on Tuesday approved an immediate 35% cut to its school police force, a reduction of $25 million, in response to weeks of protests by student activists and community groups who had called for the elimination of the department.

In the wake of the decision, the department’s police chief, Todd Chamberlain, who has been in the job less than a year, resigned from his post Wednesday.

  • A whipping post was removed from the grounds of a historic Delaware courthouse on Wednesday after calls from activists to address its troubled, racist history. The removal was carried out by the state’s Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs.
  • Virginia’s capital city began taking down its statue of Stonewall Jackson after Mayor Levar Stoney ordered the immediate removal of multiple Confederate statues in Richmond.
  • A construction crew removed the massive Christopher Columbus statue from outside Columbus, Ohio’s City Hall on Wednesday morning, in one of the most dramatic cases yet of a city reshaping how its monuments reflect its sense of history and community identity.
  • The Dept. of Homeland Security says it will deploy personnel across the U.S. to carry out President Trump’s order to protect statues and monuments from vandalism amid ongoing protests for racial justice.
  • Clay County, Florida Sheriff Darryl Daniels says he will deputize every gun owner in his county to put down violent protests his deputies can’t handle alone.

Trump Administration News

  • The USMCA trade pact, which replaces NAFTA, went into effect Wednesday.
  • As Sen. Elizabeth Warren exited the Senate SCIF after what appeared to be a briefing on Russian bounties, she said, “There was no one there who had any information about what information was given to the president or when it was given to him.”She added: “That was NOT a briefing.”
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is accusing journalists of spreading misinformation related to reports that Russia offered bounties to Taliban-backed fighters to kill U.S. service members in Afghanistan, alleging reporters don’t have enough intelligence information but refusing to discuss what he knows of the issue.
  • Three NATO officials say they had been briefed on intelligence that Russian operatives were secretly offering cash bounties to Taliban-linked militants for US casualties in Afghanistan — as President Donald Trump claimed he was not, and dismissed news reports on the intelligence as a “possibly another fabricated Russia Hoax.”

The revelation that US intelligence had briefed the White House on the Taliban bounties had been a closely-held secret for several months, until US officials began briefing UK and other European allies last week.

  • “The Taliban have been paid by Russian intelligence for attacks on U.S. forces—and on ISIS forces—in Afghanistan from 2014 up to the present,” says Mullah Manan Niazai, who was formerly a senior figure in the Taliban.
  • Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) said on Wednesday that after reading classified intelligence he believes the Trump administration should brief the Senate on reports that Russians offered bounties to Taliban-linked fighters to target U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
  • Senate Democrats are requesting a briefing on wire transfers intercepted by U.S. intelligence connected to reports of bounties being offered by Russian forces to incentivize Taliban-linked militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
  • Afghan contractor Rahmatullah Azizi was named in a U.S. intelligence report as one of the key middlemen who delivered cash from Russia’s GRU to the Taliban to target American troops, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

American and Afghan officials reported that Azizi spent several years transferring money to reward Taliban-linked fighters for targeting American troops in Afghanistan.

  • CIA Director Gina Haspel and National Security Agency Director Paul Nakasone will brief congressional leaders known as the Gang of Eight on intelligence related to suspected Russian bounties on U.S. forces on Thursday.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany confirmed at a press briefing that the classified briefing would take place on Thursday. The Gang of Eight includes the top Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate as well as the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate Intelligence committees.

Sources:  ABC News, The Atlantic, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So – Protests/Race Relations News

Read Time: 3 Minutes

  • Walmart will stop selling “All Lives Matter” merchandise, a phrase typically used to counter Black Lives Matter protests against racial injustice and police brutality.

“We fundamentally believe all lives do matter and every individual deserves respect. However, as we listened, we came to understand that the way some, but not all, people are using the phrase ‘All Lives Matter’ in the current environment intentionally minimized the focus on the painful reality of racial inequity.”

  • Hulu has removed a 1988 episode of “The Golden Girls” in which actresses Betty White and Rue McClanahan wear black mud on their faces as some were concerned it could be mistaken as black face. But the removal is being met with pushback as many Black activists say it is not anything advocates have pushed for and takes away from actual demands and policy change being requested.
  • Protesters outside of City Hall reportedly clashed with New York Police Department  officers on Tuesday morning ahead of an expected vote on a city budget that includes a $1 billion cut to the NYPD.  

Police in riot gear are seen pushing protesters back, in video footage reported by ABC News. 

The clash between protesters and police followed the arrest of an 18-year-old from Brooklyn who police said was caught spray-painting a statue outside of City Hall at 2:40 a.m. on Tuesday, ABC reported.

  • Gov. Tate Reeves on Tuesday signed into law a measure that removes the Mississippi state flag, which features the blue bars and white stars of the Confederate battle flag. The legislation requires it to be removed within 15 days.
  • Facebook has removed a network of anti-government accounts associated with the fringe “boogaloo” movement after designating the group as a dangerous organization, the company said. The network, which represents a subset of the broader movement, actively planned violence, Facebook said, though it declined to share additional details, saying it did not want to interfere with ongoing law enforcement investigations.

On Tuesday afternoon, the company removed: 220 Facebook accounts.95 Instagram accounts, 28 Facebook pages, 106 Facebook groups, 

In addition, Facebook removed more than 400 other groups and 100 other pages that were “hosting similar content as the violent network but were maintained by accounts outside of it.” As of today, the boogaloo network will fall under Facebook’s policy for Dangerous Individuals and Organizations, which bans posts “praising, supporting, or representing it.”

  • Injured Buffalo protester Martin Gugino has been released from the hospital, nearly four weeks after he was pushed to the ground by two Buffalo police officers.
  • The Justice Department announced Tuesday that it is reviewing Elijah McClain’s death to determine if a federal civil rights probe is “warranted.”

McClain, a Black man who worked as a massage therapist, died after a confrontation with police. Police placed McClain in a chokehold, and the man then experienced a heart attack in an ambulance before being declared brain dead three days later. 

His last words were documented on police body camera footage: “I’m an introvert. I’m just different. That’s all. I’m so sorry. I have no gun. I don’t do that stuff. I don’t do any fighting. Why are you attacking me? I don’t even kill flies! I don’t eat meat! But I don’t judge people, I don’t judge people who do eat meat. Forgive me … I’m so sorry.”

  • The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday approved the first step in a plan to replace Los Angeles Police Department officers with community-based, unarmed emergency responders for non-violent calls for service.
  • A Fort Lauderdale police officer captured on video last month appearing to push over a kneeling protester who had her hands up was charged with battery on Tuesday, authorities said.
  • The president Tweeted: “I will Veto the Defense Authorization Bill if the Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren (of all people!) Amendment, which will lead to the renaming (plus other bad things!) of Fort Bragg, Fort Robert E. Lee, and many other Military Bases from which we won Two World Wars, is in the Bill!”

Sources:  ABC News, The Atlantic, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So – Protests/Race Relations News

Read Time: 4 Minutes

  • A Missouri couple drew their firearms on demonstrators as a group marched past their home toward St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson’s home to demand her resignation on Sunday.⁠

Early Monday morning, the president retweeted the video without comment.

  • St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner said her office is investigating the incident: “We will not tolerate the use of force against those exercising First Amendment rights, and will use the full power of Missouri law to hold people accountable.”
  • YouTube ​banned six accounts used by high-profile white nationalists on Monday. According to YouTube, the respective channels “repeatedly or egregiously violated our policies by alleging that members of protected groups were innately inferior to others, among other violations.”

The removed accounts include those ​owned by far-right political entertainer Stefan Molyneux, white nationalist outlets American Renaissance and Radix Journal, as well as longtime Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke. YouTube also removed two associated channels: one belonging to alt-right poster boy Richard Spencer and another hosting American Renaissance podcasts.

  • Members of Kansas State University’s football team say they will boycott all team activities until action is taken against a student who posted a racist tweet about George Floyd.

Players are, “demanding that Kansas State University put a policy in place that allows a student to be dismissed for displaying openly racist, threatening or disrespectful actions toward a student or groups of students.”

  • The Louisville Metro Council, a powerful oversight group with subpoena power, announced that its government oversight committee plans to launch a probe into the steps taken by Mayor Greg Fischer and members of his administration leading up to and after the police killing of Breonna Taylor.
  • Sioux Rapids, Iowa, Police Chief Tim Porter has been suspended for two weeks without pay after making a controversial comment on social media. In response to an image of a pickup attempting to drive through a crowd of protesters, Porter commented, “HIT THE GAS AND HANG ON OVER THE SPEED BUMPS.”
  • New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is proposing a $1 billion cut to the New York Police Department’s annual budget, as calls grow across the nation for local governments to defund the police, and send the money to social services instead. Some of the money in NYC will instead go towards youth centers and New York City Housing Authority developments.
  • Detroit police say that an officer who was seen on camera striking roughly a dozen protesters with a police cruiser was just attempting to escape a crowd, claiming it had turned violent. The viral video shows the protesters surrounding the car chanting “no justice, no peace” when the officer barrels through, striking some and nearly running over one protester who is seen barely rolling out of the way of a wheel.
  • Twitch, the live-streaming service owned by Amazon, on Monday temporarily suspended President Trump’s account for violating the company’s policy on “hateful conduct.” It was taken down after a 2015 speech of Trump’s was rebroadcast, in which Trump called Mexicans “rapists.”
  • Nearly 40 descendants of soldiers listed on the Confederate Memorial Obelisk in St. Augustine, Florida are suing the city to stop the removal of the 30-foot tall monument without first undergoing the legally required review process to “prevent its damage or destruction.”
  • Reddit has confirmed that it is banning r/The_Donald, a political subreddit group in support of President Donald Trump, as well as an additional 2,000 subreddit groups associated with the account, for violating its policies against hate speech.
  • Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas said he received a message calling him a “piece of shit n—-” and saying “You should swing from a tree, I’m not threatening it, but would love to see it,” as residents express outrage over his new mandate requiring people to wear masks to slow the spread of coronavirus.
  • 2 more people have been shot, one fatally, in the fourth shooting in 10 days within the boundaries of the Capitol Hill Organized Protest zone near downtown Seattle. City officials have vowed to dismantle the free-protest area.
  • A prosecutor in Texas has resigned after sharing a Facebook post that appeared to equate people protesting racism and police brutality with Nazis who “tore down statues”
  • The former Minneapolis police officer charged with killing George Floyd and the three other officers accused of aiding and abetting in his death appeared in court on Monday for a pretrial hearing.

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So

Read Time: 7 Minutes

Coronavirus/COVID-19

  • The death toll from COVID-19 reached half a million people on Sunday.
  • Vice President Mike Pence said new outbreaks of the coronavirus may be arising because younger Americans aren’t abiding by federal guidance.

Pence said people “should wear masks whenever social distancing is not possible” and “wherever it is indicated by state or local authorities.”

  • A choir of more than 100 people performed without masks at an event in Texas at the First Baptist Church on Sunday that featured a speech by Vice President Mike Pence.

Nearly 2,200 people attended the “Celebrate Freedom Rally,” according to rally organizers. The venue capacity for the indoor event was close to 3,000 attendees, organizers say. Face masks at the event were “strongly encouraged,” with signs posted around the venue. According to reports, at least half of the crowd was wearing a face covering. 

Throughout the service, the members of the choir sang at full volume, behind an orchestra. Between songs, the choir members put their masks back on when they sat down.

  • Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday a nationwide mandate to wear face coverings to prevent the spread of coronavirus is “definitely long overdue.”

The speaker called on President Trump to “be an example” to the U.S. and wear a face covering, saying “real men wear masks.”

  • Vice President Pence said the federal government would extend support for coronavirus testing in Texas as long as necessary amid a dangerous surge in new cases. U.S. health officials had originally moved to end supporting sites at the end of the month..
  • Florida Gov. DeSantis says his state’s rise in coronavirus cases is being “driven by a big increase over the last three weeks in individuals testing positive throughout the state of Florida in younger age groups.”
  • California Governor. Gavin Newsom ordered bars in several counties to close due to the spread of COVID-19, including Los Angeles County.

Newsom tweeted the order around Noon on Sunday, which also affects Fresno, Imperial, Kern, Kings, Los Angeles, San Joaquin, and Tulare counties.

The governor also recommended bars close in Contra Costa, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Stanislaus and Ventura counties.

  • Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar warned Sunday that “the window is closing” to take action to curb the spread of the coronavirus as cases across the southern United States continue “surging.”

In an interview with “Meet the Press,” Azar said that the country has “more tools than we had months ago” to fight the virus and the disease it causes, including new treatments and more personal protective equipment. But he stressed that America is facing a “very serious situation.”

  • A CBS News poll shows record numbers saying efforts against the outbreak are going badly (including new highs saying efforts are going very badly); President Trump receives his lowest marks for handling the pandemic since it began; and the outlook for the summer is grim. Twice as many expect the outbreak to worsen, rather than improve.

In addition to coronavirus concerns, overall, views of how things are generally going in the country are decidedly negative. Seventy-six percent of Americans say things are going badly compared to 56% who felt that way in December 2019.

  • Allegheny County, PA officials say they are banning on-site consumption of alcohol following a recent surge of new Coronavirus cases.

“For the first time since COVID-19 cases were confirmed in the state, Allegheny County led the state in the number of new COVID-19 cases,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “We’re going the wrong direction.”

  • The United Kingdom reported a weekly total of 6,820 coronavirus infections, that’s a decrease of 19.2% over last week and 80.9% since the week of April 19th.
  • Brazil tallied 38,693 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours and 1,109 additional deaths. The number of COVID19 infections stands at 1,313,667 and the death toll at 57,070 as of Saturday night, with no sign of policy changes by the Bolsonaro government.
  • The University of Tennessee will require students to have both flu and, when available,  COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday New York State’s lowest death toll and hospitalizations due to COVID-19 since the pandemic began. Saturday, there were five deaths and 869 hospitalizations in New York State.

Of the 61,906 tests conducted in New York State Saturday, 616, or 0.99 percent, were positive.

  • Oklahoma (478), South Carolina (1,384), Louisiana (1,454),  North Carolina (1,576), Georgia (2,225), and Arizona (3,857) all set records for new coronavirus cases.

Protest/Race Relations News

  • Two street murals, one reading, “All Black Lives Matter” and the other “Abolish White Supremacy” were painted on two streets in Newark, NJ by artists with the support of the city.
  • The Mississippi state legislature — both the House and Senate — passed a bill on Sunday to change the state’s flag in a historic step toward removing the flag’s Confederate battle emblem.

The bill will now go to Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves, who has said he would sign legislation that state lawmakers send him to remove the Confederate insignia. The legislation cleared the state House in a 91-23 vote and the state Senate with a 37-14 vote

  • New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy Tweeted: “Today, Mississippi lawmakers voted to remove the Confederate symbol from its state flag.

We replaced the MS flag with the American flag at Liberty State Park last year due to its hateful imagery. We look forward to raising a new MS flag soon.”

Administration News

  • United States intelligence officers and Special Operations forces in Afghanistan alerted their superiors as early as January to a Russian plot to pay bounties to the Taliban to kill American troops in Afghanistan, according to officials briefed on the matter.

Interrogations of captured militants and criminals played a central role in making the intelligence community confident in its assessment that the Russians had offered and paid bounties in 2019, another official has said.

Officials briefed on the matter said the assessment had been treated as a closely held secret but that the administration expanded briefings about it over the last week — including sharing information about it with the British government, whose forces were among those said to have been targeted.

In addition to saying he was never “briefed or told” about the intelligence report, Mr. Trump also cast doubt on the assessment’s credibility. He described the intelligence report as being about “so-called attacks on our troops in Afghanistan by Russians.” The report described bounties paid to Taliban militants by Russian military intelligence officers, not direct attacks. Mr. Trump also suggested that the developments could be a “hoax” and questioned whether The Times’s sources existed.

  • Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the third-ranking House Republican, said in a Twitter message on Sunday: “If reporting about Russian bounties on U.S. forces is true, the White House must explain: 1. Why weren’t the president or vice president briefed? Was the info in the [Presidential Daily Briefing]? 2. Who did know and when? 3. What has been done in response to protect our forces & hold Putin accountable?”
  • Russian bounties offered to Taliban-linked militants to kill coalition forces in Afghanistan are believed to have resulted in the deaths of several U.S. service members, according to intelligence gleaned from U.S. military interrogations of captured militants in recent months.

Several people familiar with the matter said it was unclear exactly how many Americans or coalition troops from other countries may have been killed. U.S. forces in Afghanistan suffered a total 26 deaths from 2018-2019.

  • British security officials have confirmed to Sky News that the reports about the Russian bounty plot are true.
  • The president Tweeted late Sunday night: “Intel just reported to me that they did not find this info credible, and therefore did not report it to me or @VP . Possibly another fabricated Russia Hoax, maybe by the Fake News @nytimesbooks, wanting to make Republicans look bad!!!

Presidential Campaign

  • 5% of Americans say they feel things in America today, generally speaking, are going “very well” according to a new CBS poll.
  • Following pressure to disclose the number of minorities on their staffs, the campaigns for former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump released diversity statistics.

In a summary of staff data obtained by NBC News, the Biden campaign disclosed that 35 percent of the full-time staff and 36 percent of senior advisors are people of color.

After the Biden campaign revealed its numbers, the Trump campaign followed, announcing that 25 percent of its senior staff are people of color but declining to provide information for all full-time staff.

  • Fox News Senior Correspondent Charles Gasparino Tweeted: “BREAKING— (thread)GOP operatives are for the first time raising the possibility that @realDonaldTrump  could drop out of the race if his poll numbers don’t rebound. Over the weekend I spoke to a sample of major players; one described Trumps current psyche as “fragile.”

“I’m not convinced yet; he’s got time and he’s running against an opponent who is literally hiding in his basement. Plus the public isn’t focusing yet on just how left wing @JoeBiden has become, so much so, he can bring himself to denounce rioting.

“That said the speculation indicates how tense  GOP operatives are about Trump losing and the party losing the senate and having their entire agenda abolished in a leftist wave election. Again lots of time and Trump has endured a horrible couple of months but that’s the snap [shot]”

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So – Protests/Race Relations News

Read Time: 4 Minutes

  • Mississippi junior basketball player Blake Hinson plans to transfer to Iowa State. Hinson said there were factors beyond basketball that influenced his decision to leave.

“To make a general statement, it was time to go and leave Ole Miss,” Hinson said. “I’m proud not to represent that flag anymore and to not be associated with anything representing the Confederacy.”

  • Princeton University announced Saturday that it has voted to remove Woodrow Wilson’s name from the university’s School of Public and International Affairs.

“We believe that Wilson’s racist thinking and policies make him an inappropriate namesake for a school whose scholars, students, and alumni must be firmly committed to combating the scourge of racism in all its forms,” Princeton’s board said in a statement.

  • The Mississippi state House advanced legislation to change the Magnolia State’s flag, the last in the country to still include the stars and bars of the Confederacy.

The chamber advanced the bill by an 84-35 margin, allowing lawmakers in the state House to reach the two-thirds majority needed to suspend the rules to consider the change.

The House will then be able to consider the legislation and vote on the measure, which would go to the Senate if passed.

  • Four men alleged to have been trying to tear down the Andrew Jackson statue in Lafayette Square just outside of the White House were each charged with destruction of federal property, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for D.C.
  • A second statue of Christopher Columbus has been removed in Newark amid a wave of such removals across the country.

The monument was removed from Columbus Plaza on Bloomfield Avenue, outside the St. Francis Xavier Church, by private citizens around 6:30 p.m. Friday, according to several sources.

A city spokesman confirmed that the city did not remove the monument, and declined to comment on who actually took it down. Reportedly, the owner of the statue had it removed. 

  • Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves (R), who has long insisted voters should decide whether to remove the Confederate emblem from the state’s flag, said for the first time Saturday that he would sign a bill to change the banner if one is sent his way.
  • A Hoover, Alabama police officer was fired Friday for a social media post earlier this week that showed a protester in the crosshairs of a rifle scope.

The officer made the post on Facebook Tuesday in response to an article posted about protesters at the Georgia Wendy’s where Rayshard Brooks was killed.

The headline of that article was “Armed protesters remain at Wendy’s where Rayshard Brooks was killed. So what’s next?” The article was accompanied by a photo of a Black protester holding a shotgun.

In his response to the post, Officer Ryan Snow reposted the photo of the protester to show him in the crosshairs of a rifle scope. He wrote, “Exhale. Feel. Pause. Press steadily. That’s what’s next.”

  • Four police officers in San Jose, California, have been placed on leave while the department says it is investigating alleged racist and anti-Muslim posts on Facebook.

Screenshots published in a blog post on Medium by “the partner of an active law enforcement officer in a San Francisco Bay Area police department,” included posts that said, ““Black lives don’t really matter” and “I say re-purpose the hijabs into nooses.” The posts were made in a private Facebook group called 10–7ODSJ.

The FBI has been asked to assist in the probe

  • Federal prosecutors brought extortion charges against the man whose arrest this week sparked violence and destruction in Minneapolis.

U.S. Attorney Scott Blader filed the charges against Devonere Johnson, alleging he threatened to bash windows of downtown businesses unless employees gave him money. 

Blader also alleges Johnson, 28, threatened to “shut down and destroy” another business unless Johnson and his friends were provided free food and drinks.

Blader said Johnson sought to extort the business owners by taking advantage of protests and unrest following the death of George Floyd.

“Those who attempt to take advantage of recent events to extort local businesses under the guise of community activism will be vigorously prosecuted,” Blader said in a statement.

  • Protesters demonstrating over the death of Elijah McClain blocked Highway 225 in Aurora, Colorado Saturday evening.

McClain, a Black man who worked as a massage therapist, died last year following a confrontation with police officers in Aurora. An officer placed the main in a chokehold, and McClain later suffered a heart attack in an ambulance. He was declared brain dead three days later. 

McClain’s last words were caught on police body camera footage. In the footage, McClain could be heard saying, “I’m an introvert. I’m just different. That’s all. I’m so sorry. I have no gun. I don’t do that stuff. I don’t do any fighting. Why are you attacking me? I don’t even kill flies! I don’t eat meat! But I don’t judge people, I don’t judge people who do eat meat. Forgive me … I’m so sorry.”

  • According to police, at around 9 pm, shots were fired in Jefferson Square Park in Louisville, Kentucky. Personnel from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department performed live-saving measures on a male victim who eventually died.

Multiple eyewitnesses say a homeless man who had been kicked out of the park several times somehow acquired a gun and fired upon protestors. 

  • The president Retweeted a video of a supporter yelling “White Power” at counterprotesters in The Villages, a large retirement community in central Florida. The president praised his supporters, “Thank you to the great people of The Villages.”
  • White House spokesperson Judd Deere on Trump’s now-deleted tweet: “President Trump is a big fan of The Villages. He did not hear the one statement made on the video. What he did see was tremendous enthusiasm from his many supporters.”

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, NJ.com, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So – Protests/Race Relations News

Read Time: 5 Minutes

Protest/Race Relations News

  • Following years of criticism about the racist origins of the ride, Splash Mountain at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resort will be re-themed to reflect the story of The Princess and the Frog, the company said Thursday. The re-themed ride has been planned since at least last year.
  • Native American activists have for years protested what they view as the desecration of the Black Hills, a sacred Lakota Sioux site that was sculpted into Mount Rushmore by KKK member Gutzon Borglum, saying “It’s an injustice to actively steal Indigenous people’s land then carve the white faces of the conquerors who committed genocide.”

Now, as President Trump is set to visit next week, more protests are planned.

  • A New York police officer who allegedly used an illegal chokehold while conducting an arrest earlier this week has been detained and charged with second-degree strangulation. A viral video caught the officer holding a man in a chokehold as onlookers screamed: “Stop choking him! Let him go!”
  • Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has directed officials in his office to reexamine the death of Elijah McClain, a 23-year-old unarmed Black man who died in police custody last year, after more than 2.6 million people signed a petition demanding justice.

McClain was placed in a chokehold by police and injected with ketamine after someone called 911 to report him as suspicious while he walked home from a convenience store.

  • Three employees of a Michigan youth center have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and second-degree child abuse in the death of 16-year-old Cornelius Fredericks. The Black teenager went into cardiac arrest and died of asphyxia after he was restrained by staff for allegedly throwing part of his sandwich at another resident.
  • A newly-released State Department report found that racial and ethnic terrorism — particularly white supremacist threats — are “on the rise and spreading geographically.” The report warned that white terrorist groups are increasingly targeting immigrants, LGBTQ people, as well as Jewish, Muslim and other religious minorities.
  • The University of Alabama football team released a powerful new video calling for “building a better, more just future” and saying that “All lives can’t matter until Black lives matter.”

“We speak for justice, for fairness, for equality, for greater understanding. We stand together against racism, against brutality, against violence, for a better world.”

  • NAACP President Derrick Johnson sees some of the Trump administration’s actions on race and citizenship as reminiscent of the US before the Civil War, likening the president’s efforts to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to the Supreme Court’s infamous Dred Scott decision of 1857 that ruled Black Americans were not citizens.

“He’s operating from a space of creating a divisive tone, allowing for levels of racism to germinate from the White House.”

  • A new bill proposed by Republican Sen. Joni Ernst would withhold federal funding from local governments that don’t disband autonomous zones created by non-government figures and accused local leaders of not doing an adequate job keeping peace in their areas. The proposal comes as Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan addresses what was initially dubbed the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone and later the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest
  • New York City appears set to receive a “Black Lives Matter” street mural outside Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan, according to a statement from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office.

“The president is a disgrace to the values we cherish in New York City. He can’t run or deny the reality we are facing, and any time he wants to set foot in the place he claims is his hometown, he should be reminded Black Lives Matter,” Julia Arredondo, the mayor’s spokeswoman, said Wednesday, the New York Daily News reported.

The statement will be painted along Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th streets in front of President Trump’s notable Manhattan building sometime before July 4.

The new mural is one of seven that will be added throughout the city’s five boroughs.

  • President Trump accused a Black Lives Matter leader of promoting treasonous activity and objected to New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plans to install a street mural in support of the movement outside Trump Tower.

“Black Lives Matter leader states, ‘If the U.S. doesn’t give us what we want, then we will burn down this system and replace it,’” Trump tweeted Thursday. “This is Treason, Sedition, Insurrection!”

The president’s comments appeared to be in response to remarks made by Hawk Newsome, leader of Black Lives Matter Greater New York, in an interview Wednesday on Fox News about the movement’s objectives after the killing of George Floyd in police custody.

“If this country doesn’t give us what we want, then we will burn down this system and replace it. I can be speaking figuratively, I can be speaking literally, it’s a matter of interpretation.”

“Told that @NYCMayor Bill de Blasio wants to paint the fabled & beautiful Fifth Avenue, right in front of Trump Tower/Tiffany, with a big yellow Black Lives Matter sign. ‘Pigs in a Blanket, Fry ‘Em Like Bacon’, referring to killing Police, is their chant. NYC Police are furious!” Trump tweeted.

  • The Madison, Wisconsin police department is investigating a Wednesday assault as a hate crime after four white men allegedly poured lighter fluid and threw a lighter at a teenage bi-racial woman after yelling “the N-word really loud”. The 18-year-old, Althea Bernstein, works as an EMT and was in her car at a red light when the incident took place and said medical professionals “had to pretty much scrub the skin off, which was extremely painful.”
  • Prosecutors added hate crime charges Thursday against Harry H. Rogers, a self-identified leader in the Ku Klux Klan, accused of driving through peaceful protesters in Richmond.

Henrico Commonwealth’s Attorney Shannon Taylor brought additional charges against Rogers, including four counts of assault with hate crimes, two counts of felonious attempted malicious wounding and one count of felony hit and run.

Video footage and photos shown during the hearing Thursday show Rogers driving onto the median to pass a group of cars behind an estimated 300 protesters headed north on Lakeside Avenue near Vale Street. From there, footage shows Rogers’ driving into at least two bicyclists and one demonstrator on foot.

  • The U.S. Senate voted 90-7 on Thursday to debate the annual National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, setting the stage for a battle between Democrats and President Donald Trump’s Republicans over changing the names of military bases named after Confederate generals.
  • President Trump suggested unruly protesters who deface or topple monuments and statues will likely face “retribution,” likening them to “terrorists.”

Trump sat for a town hall with Fox News host Sean Hannity during a trip to Wisconsin. During the question-and- answer session, one attendee asked what the government was doing to “give us back our streets” amid national unrest over racial injustice and police brutality.

“Every night we’re going to get tougher and tougher, and at some point there is going to be retribution because there has to be,” Trump said. “These people are vandals, but they’re agitators, but they’re really, they’re terrorists in a sense.”

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So – Protest/Race Relations News

Read Time: 2 Minutes

Protest/Race Relations News

  • GOP Sen. Josh Hawley unveiled a proposal to remove language in the mammoth defense bill that requires the Pentagon to implement a plan to rename Confederate-named bases and other military installations, saying the requirement “smacks of the cancel culture the Left wants to impose on the nation.”
  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren and dozens of other Senate Democrats have introduced a bill that would require the Pentagon to strip Confederate names from military bases and other property within one year.
  • NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace dismissed an FBI investigation that concluded a noose found in the garage he was recently assigned to at Talladega Superspeedway was a garage door pull that had been there since last year and not a hate crime directed at him, with the 26-year-old driver calling it “a straight-up noose” in an interview.
  • The National Guard has agreed to send unarmed members to assist U.S. Park Police in securing Washington’s national monuments.
  • GOP Sen. Mike Braun introduced legislation to scale back qualified immunity, an idea that divides Senate Republicans. 

Braun’s bill, titled the Reforming Qualified Immunity Act, would get rid of a current standard that shields police officers from civil lawsuits if their behavior didn’t  violate a “clearly established” law.

Instead, a police officer would be eligible for qualified immunity if the conduct in question “had previously been authorized or required by federal or state statute or regulation” or if a court has found it is “consistent with the Constitution and federal laws.”

  • Senate Democrats blocked a narrow Republican bill to incentivize police departments to change their tactics. They denounced the measure as an insufficient and irredeemably flawed answer to the problem of systemic racism in law enforcement.
  • The Department of Justice has told lawmakers that it is considering launching a probe into potential discriminatory practices taking place at the Minneapolis Police Department.
  • Three Wilmington, NC police officers – Michael ‘Kevin’ Piner, James ‘Brian’ Gilmore, and Jessie E. Moore II – have been fired after a customary review of dashcam footage revealed the officers engaging in racist conversations. Among the comments, Moore was discussing with Piner the arrest of a Black woman the previous day, “‘she needed a bullet in her head right then and move on. Let’s move the body out of the way and keep going.”

After more derogatory comments about the arrestee and the magistrate, the conversation took an even bleaker turn, as the two officers discussed an upcoming civil war.

“Piner tells Moore later in the conversation that he feels a civil war is coming and he is ‘ready.’ Piner advised he is going to buy a new assault rifle in the next couple of weeks. A short time later Officer Piner began to discuss society being close to ‘martial law’ and soon “we are just gonna go out and start slaughtering them fucking niggers. I can’t wait. God, I can’t wait.”

  • The three white men arrested in the killing of Ahmaud Arbery, a black man who was chased while running in a South Georgia neighborhood, have been indicted on murder charges by a Georgia grand jury, the prosecutor in the case announced on Wednesday.

The men — Gregory McMichael, 64; his son Travis McMichael, 34; and their neighbor William Bryan, 50 — were arrested and charged last month with murder and other charges in connection with Mr. Arbery’s death, which prompted nationwide protests and indignation, particularly after a graphic video of his Feb. 23 killing was released online.

  • NASA will rename its Washington, D.C., headquarters after Mary W. Jackson, the agency’s first Black woman engineer, Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced Wednesday.

Jackson worked for seven years in the agency’s segregated West Area Computing division in 1951 before becoming an engineer in 1958. She had achieved the senior-most engineering title within NASA by 1979, and voluntarily took a demotion to work as an Equal Opportunity Specialist, seeking out accomplished women and minorities for recruitment within NASA.

Jackson retired in 1985 after 34 years at NASA; she died in 2005 at the age of 83.

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post

The Past 24 Hours or So

Read Time: 6 Minutes

Protest/Race Relations News

  • North Carolina’s governor called for the removal of Confederate monuments from State Capitol grounds on Saturday, citing public safety after anti-racism protesters in Raleigh pulled two statues down with ropes Friday night.
  • ▪NASCAR launched an investigation after noose was found in Black driver Bubba Wallace’s garage stall. at the race in Alabama. It comes less than two weeks after Wallace successfully campaigned to ban the displaying of the Confederate flag at NASCAR events. Wallace, who is the circuit’s only full-time Black driver, released a statement of his own, saying “This will not break me, I will not give in nor will I back down.”
  • South Africa’s last apartheid president, F.W. de Klerk, has withdrawn from a U.S. seminar about minority rights because he did not want to embarrass himself or his hosts in the current charged racial climate.

De Klerk was scheduled to speak at an American Bar Association virtual event on issues such as minority rights, racism and the rule of law.

  • Eight minority corrections officers in Minnesota have filed discrimination charges with the state’s Department of Human Rights after they were barred from guarding Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis cop charged in George Floyd’s death.

As Chauvin was brought to the lockup, all officers of color were ordered to another floor, according to the Star Tribune, which obtained a copy of the racial discrimination charges.

A supervisor told one of the minority officers that, because of their race, they would be a possible “liability” around Chauvin. 

“I understood that the decision to segregate us had been made because we could not be trusted to carry out our work responsibilities professionally around the high-profile inmate — solely because of the color of our skin,” wrote one acting sergeant, who is black, the Star Tribune reported.

“I am not aware of a similar situation where white officers were segregated from an inmate,” the officer added.

  • At least one person is dead and another is in critical condition after a reported shooting early Saturday morning in Seattle’s Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ). 

The Seattle Police Department, which was driven out of the CHAZ by Black Lives Matter protesters last week, tweeted that it was investigating a shooting in the area.

  • The New York Police Department said on Sunday that it was investigating the use of force during an arrest of a black man in Queens, after cellphone video of the encounter that was posted online showed an officer appearing to use a chokehold on the man until he became limp.
  • Three Thousand Oaks, CA men — including two who worked as civilian employees for local law enforcement agencies — were recently arrested on suspicion of vandalizing a Black Lives Matter sign in Westlake Village, authorities said.

The sign, described as a tarp with the letters BLM painted on it, has been displayed on a fence on Westlake Boulevard for the past three weeks, officials said, and has been damaged or removed on several occasions.

The sign’s owner installed a surveillance camera which documented the damage, officials said. When video of one of the crimes was posted on social media, detectives with the sheriff’s office recognized the employee.

Coronavirus/COVID-19

  • In a CNN interview, White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said the coronavirus was a “product of the Chinese Communist party” and suggested without evidence that the potentially fatal virus may have been purposefully created by the Chinese government.
  • Navarro also defended the president’s statement that he directed officials to “slow the [coronavirus] testing down.” “Come on now, Jake. You know it was tongue in cheek. Come on now. That was tongue in cheek,” cutting off Tapper as he repeatedly asked about the president’s remarks.

“I don’t know that it was tongue in cheek at all,” Tapper retorted.

  • Navarro said that the White House was working to prepare for the possibility of a second wave of the coronavirus in the fall, though he said it wouldn’t necessarily come.

“We are filling the stockpile in anticipation of a possible problem in the fall,” “We’re doing everything we can.”

  • Nationwide, cases have risen 15 percent over the last two weeks. Cases are rising in 18 states across the South, West and Midwest. Seven states hit single-day case records Saturday, and five others hit a record earlier in the week.
  • Spain opened its borders to most European countries and ended a state of emergency imposed to contain the coronavirus.
  • Chinese researchers have started phase 2 tests on humans of a possible vaccine against the new coronavirus.
  • Authorities in Germany’s Goettingen and North Rhine Westphalia regions have called on police to enforce quarantine measures following a rise in local coronavirus infections, which caused the country’s virus reproduction rate to spike.
  • The Trump administration is doing “a great job” reopening the country after lockdowns to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak, Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said on Sunday, as infections continued to spike in several states.
  • Beijing is capable of screening almost 1 million people a day for the coronavirus, an official said on Sunday, as testing continued across the city to try to contain the spread of a fresh outbreak.
  • The drastic reduction in pollution during coronavirus lockdowns around the world should lead to greater concern for the environment as restrictions are lifted, Pope Francis said.
  • India’s drug regulator has given Hetero Labs the green light to manufacture and market its generic version of Gilead Science’s experimental COVID-19 treatment remdesivir.
  • Britain will outline its plans to ease the coronavirus lockdown this week, health minister Matt Hancock said on Sunday, potentially relaxing the two-metre rule on social distancing, allowing many businesses to reopen in early July.

Administration News

  • The Tulsa Fire Department said just under 6,200 people attended President Trump’s campaign rally at the BOK Center in Oklahoma, a figure far short of the arena’s full capacity of 19,000 and well below the campaign’s expectations.
  • Trump was “furious about the unused outdoor stage and the comparatively thin crowd in the stadium,” according to two people familiar with his reaction. News broadcasts carried video of the partially empty stadium.
  • The family of Tom Petty sent a cease and desist notice to the Trump campaign after it played one of the rock legend’s songs, “I Won’t Back Down,” at a rally in Tulsa,OK: “Both the late Tom Petty and his family firmly stand against racism and discrimination of any kind. Tom Petty would never want a song of his used for a campaign of hate. He liked to bring people together.”
  • At least 135 former U.S. attorneys and assistant U.S. attorneys signed an open letter condemning the firing of former Southern District of New York U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, saying that they “deplore” President Trump and Attorney General William Barr’s actions: “The actions of the President and the Attorney General are an attack on the concept that investigations should be conducted in a nonpartisan manner.”
  • President Trump’s former national security adviser John Bolton said in an interview published Sunday that he intends to vote against Trump in November.

“In 2016 I voted for Trump over Hillary Clinton. Now, having seen this president up close, I cannot do this again. My concern is for the country, and he does not represent the Republican cause that I want to back.”

Sources:  ABC News, Axios, Bloomberg, CBS News, CNN, Financial Times, Fox News,The Hill, NBC News, NPR, NY Times, Politico, Reuters, Salon, Slate, Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post