Morning Headlines

New York Times: Trump wants it known: Grading 100 days is ‘ridiculous’ (but his were the best)

Politico: 100 days of Democratic rage

The Hill: Infighting cools down in Trumpland

Roll Call: Trump may accept border wall funding later to avoid shutdown 

CNN Politics: Barack Obama returns to remind us how radically different he is from Donald Trump

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Random Jazz: Al Fairweather & Sandy Brown’s All Stars – “Yaknik” (1962)

The bio-blurb in my Penguin Guide to Jazz says this about Mr. Fairweather (1927-93):

Born in Edinburgh, he co-led groups with his frequent partner Sandy Brown from the early ’50s and helped pioneer the development of the British mainstream sound. He worked with Acker Bilk in the ’60s, but thereafter became a teacher and played less often.

And about Mr. Brown (1929-75):

Born in India, he group up in Edinburgh and was playing clarinet there in rhythm clubs as a teenager. He formed a band with childhood friend Al Fairweather and then came to London. He moved from simple trad beginnings to a mainstream style which became increasingly sophisticated, although he recorded little. He also worked as an architect, building sound studios, and was a gifted writer, but illness curtailed his activities, and he died young.

The song below, Yaknik, is on a 1962 album called Studies in Brown, on the Columbia UK label (SEG 8157).

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Trump is in no position to threaten Republicans with primary challenges

In an interview with Dana Bash on CNN yesterday, Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, discussed threats President Trump made in the form of potentially supporting a primary challenger against him in 2018.

The threat by Trump, via his budget director Mick Mulvaney, was in response to Sanford’s plan to vote against proposed GOP legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare earlier in the year. Sanford said other Republicans similarly opposed to Trump’s healthcare legislation were also threatened with being “primaried.”

Sanford had previously discussed the threat in a South Carolina newspaper article.

“The president asked me to look you square in the eyes and to say that he hoped that you voted ‘no’ on this bill so he could run [a primary challenger] against you in 2018,” Sanford quoted Mulvaney as saying at the time.

Significantly, Politico reported today that a number of high profile Republicans are saying “President Donald Trump needs to turn things around fast — or the GOP could pay dearly in 2018.”

With the party preparing to defend its congressional majorities in next year’s midterms, senior Republicans are expressing early concern about Trump’s lack of legislative accomplishments, his record-low approval ratings, and the overall dysfunction that’s gripped his administration.

It certainly doesn’t sound like Trump is in a position to threaten anyone.

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Quotable Quote: Sen. Sanders, your perfectionism is showing

Did I do that?

After saying last week that he wasn’t sure Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff, running in the Georgia 6th congressional district special election, was a progressive, Sen. Sanders backtracked.

Let me be very clear. It is imperative that Jon Ossoff be elected congressman from Georgia’s 6th District and that Democrats take back the U.S. House. I applaud the energy and grassroots activism in Jon’s campaign. His victory would be an important step forward in fighting back against Trump’s reactionary agenda.

Thanks, Bernie. You’re a trooper.

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This Day in American History: April 24, 1877 – Withdrawal of federal troops from New Orleans and the South, effectively ending Reconstruction

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What would get Obama back in the game?

Josh Earnest, the man with the best name ever for a White House press secretary, appeared on MSNBC today to talk about what it would take to get Barack Obama involved in substantive politicking again.

One example he said would be if “the Trump administration used the names on the DACA list to deport those not born in the U.S.,” which, he said, would represent a “broken promise.”

Less specific examples had to do with what he called a “departure of values” or an”egregious violation of the norms of governing” by the Trump administration.

The only question I have is, does the former president own a TV, or a computer? Does he read any newspapers anymore, or talk to people who do? Because that stuff is happening. For real. So, we’re waiting.

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Snapshot of upcoming gubernatorial races

In the coming weeks I’ll be taking a look at some upcoming gubernatorial races, of which there are many – 38 this year and next. Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball is calling 20 of the 38 as “competitive Toss-up or Leans Republican/Democratic.” They rate 10 as Toss-ups, with 5 of these now Republican-controlled, 4 Democratic-controlled, and 1 independent (Alaska).

Sabato and his team produced this helpful map to indicate who currently holds what in those states where elections are on the horizon.

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AG Sessions with George Stephanopolous talking “the wall” on This Week

It’s seems clear that the wall will happen in some way just barely significant enough for Trump to be able to lie about building it. And they will say that whatever counts as the wall will have been funded by some kind of trade measure that supposedly reverses unfair practices by Mexico. I’d put money on that, and Sessions is already going there.

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The French election – a sigh of relief

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Morning Headlines

Politico: Republicans sound alarm on Trump’s troubles ahead of 2018

CNN Politics: Trump’s grand plans collide with 100-day mark

The Hill: Trump team raises rhetoric against Iran

New York Times: Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen advance in French election

ABC News: Obama meets with at-risk youth ahead of Chicago speech

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