As I mentioned yesterday, the three big networks and in fact the major national dailies continue to blast out Donald Trump's charges that Hillary Clinton's husband raped or assaulted other women. And yet, CNN, MSNBC, let alone Fox refuse to discuss that at least twice Trump has himself been accused of sexual assault or rape in sworn statements - once by his wife and again a decade ago in a lawsuit brought by a woman named Jill Harth. But in discussing how to approach the issue of how to approach Trump's history of accusations of sexual violence or harassment the question came up, what exactly is Trump trying to accomplish by using Bill Clinton's past against Hillary?
For those too young to remember, "Vince Foster" was Vince Foster, a close friend of the Clintons and law partner with Hillary Clinton who came to Washington with the First Couple to work in the White House Counsel's office. Foster's tragic suicide only a few months after the inauguration was taken up by DC Republicans and used as a political cudgel with a series of conspiracy theories about how the Clintons had allegedly had him murdered. If you're looking for a modern analogue, think of Birtherism. Washington Republicans were able to get multiple independent counsel investigations to reinvestigate his suicide, all concluding that it was a suicide as it obviously was from the beginning. It is in short a horrifyingly shameless tale of political exploitation of a very sad story, one man's death, the shattering of a family which we're apparently about to relive once again.
We sent TPM's Allegra Kirkland to Tennessee to cover a national conference of White Nationalists. She found that they're united and excited in support of Donald Trump. "I've never felt this sense of energy in our movement," the conference host, Jared Taylor, said in his opening remarks. "I've never been more optimistic." Here's Allegra's full report from Burns, Tennessee.
I'm cashing out my position on the Terry/Veep betting contract.
We're in the thick of election coverage and on the publishing side of the organization planning coverage for the remainder of 2016 and beyond. But I wanted to take a moment to let you know about another book I read recently which I can heartily recommend. It's called 1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed.
With Trump again making rape accusations against his opponents husband, it's really incumbent on reporters to bring up the fact that there is sworn testimony from Trump's then-wife Ivana that he raped her in a fit of rage over a failed baldness remediation surgery. Come on, folks. Get it together.