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January 1, Dems Buckle Up for a Bumpy Super Tuesday



This Day in History | 1931

The Star Spangled Banner becomes the official national anthem. 

Good morning Middle Americans, 

Joe Biden could not have drawn up a better scenario heading into Super Tuesday. In Dallas on Monday, Biden got endorsements from 2020’s newly-departed candidates Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg. Oh, Beto O’Rourke showed up too – and endorsed Biden.  We’re not saying we’ll know this time tomorrow who the nominee is, but we should have a much better idea. 

Ivanka Trump sat for an interview with the New York Times, and she’s now openly a “proud Trump Republican” which is quite a shift from her days as a New York City socialite donating to Democratic candidates.  Ivanka is also flexing some fundraising muscle on behalf of the president. 

Chris Matthews is out at MSNBC. Officially, the departure from the network after 23 years is being called a retirement, but sources are talking several reports indicate that this was more of firing, wrapped with a faux retirement announcement. 

Finally today – The Supreme Court justices left in place a lower court’s decision that upheld the Trump administration’s action to define bump stocks as prohibited machine guns under U.S. law even as litigation over the policy continues. The move rebuffs gun-rights advocates who say the ban is violation of their Second Amendment rights. 

Read all about it. 

– Fraser Dixon 

On Super Tuesday Eve, Biden Gets Boost from Former Rivals

(AP) – Rivals no more, Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg united behind Joe Biden’s presidential bid on Monday as the Democratic Party’s moderate wing scrambled to boost the former vice president just hours before voting began across a series of high-stakes Super Tuesday states.

The urgency of the moment reflected deep concerns from the Democratic establishment that Bernie Sanders, a polarizing progressive, was positioned to seize a significant delegate lead when 14 states, one U.S. territory vote on Tuesday.

Klobuchar suspended her campaign and endorsed Biden Monday, a day after Buttigieg announced his exit. Both Klobuchar and Buttigieg, who had been Biden’s chief competition for their party’s pool of more moderate voters over the last year, declared their public support for Biden at evening events in Dallas. They were joined by another former competitor, former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who also backed Biden on Monday.

“I’m looking for a leader, I’m looking for a president, who will draw out what’s best in each of us,” Buttigieg said alongside Biden. “We have found that leader in vice president, soon-to-be president, Joe Biden.”

Speaking at a Biden rally later in the night, Klobuchar called for unity: “If we spend the next four months dividing our party and going at each other we will spend the next four year watching Donald Trump tear apart our country,” she said. “We need to unite our party and our country.”

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Ivanka Trump Now Acknowledges: ‘I’m a Proud Trump Republican’

(New York Times) – Ivanka Trump’s transformation from a New York socialite who donated to Democratic politicians and vocally supported gay rights to a card-carrying member of her father’s “Make America Great Again” coalition is now complete. 

Ms. Trump said on Monday that she had made the decision to officially change her voter registration from Democrat to Republican because she wanted to vote for her father in the New York primary, something she did not do in 2016 when she missed the deadline to register as a Republican.

That the daughter who has never strayed far from her father’s side would officially register as a Republican might seem obvious. But it was a change from her original West Wing role, when she was viewed by some Democratic elites more as a bridge to moderates because of her more progressive positions on issues like climate change, pay equity and parental leave.

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MSNBC’s Chris Matthews Resigns from ‘Hardball,’ Apologizes for Inappropriate Comments

(USA Today)Chris Matthews is retiring immediately from his MSNBC show following accusations of making inappropriate comments, including several about women.

“I’m retiring,” the veteran host said at the start of his show Monday. “This is the last ‘Hardball’ at MSNBC and obviously this isn’t for lack of interest in politics. As you can tell, I’ve loved every minute of my 20 years as host of ‘Hardball.’”

Matthews, 74, announced he would exit immediately, leaving a surprised colleague, NBC correspondent Steve Kornacki, to finish Monday’s broadcast.  Matthews, who was absent from Saturday’s coverage of the South Carolina Democratic primary, said he and MSNBC decided to mutually part ways. He also apologized for past comments about women’s appearances.

“The younger generations out there are ready to take the reins,” said Matthews. “We’ve seen them in politics, in the media, and fighting for the causes. They’re improving the workplace. We’re talking here about better standards than we grew up with. Fair standards. A lot of it has to do with how we talk to each other. Compliments on a woman’s appearance that some men, including me, might have once incorrectly thought were OK, were never OK. Not then and certainly not today. And for making such comments in the past, I’m sorry.”

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U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Ban on Gun ‘Bump Stocks’

(Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by gun rights advocates to overturn President Donald Trump’s ban on “bump stocks” – devices that enable semi-automatic weapons to fire rapidly like a machine gun – implemented after the 2017 Las Vegas mass shooting.

The justices left in place a lower court’s decision that upheld the Trump administration’s action to define bump stocks as prohibited machine guns under U.S. law even as litigation over the policy continues.

The ban, which went into effect in March 2019, was embraced by Trump following a massacre that killed 58 people at a music festival in Las Vegas in which the gunman used bump stocks. It represented a rare recent instance of gun control at the federal level in a country that has experienced a series of mass shootings.

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