Cup of Joe – 6/28/22

A new poll from NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist finds Americans opposed to the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade by a 56% to 40% margin, with a plurality strongly opposed and Democrats getting more energized to vote.

Also interesting: “There is a massive split by education — 69% of college graduates oppose the decision while those without degrees are split. Half of whites without degrees support the decision, while two-thirds of whites with college degrees oppose it.”

The Supreme Court’s abortion decision Friday “has unleashed a frenzy of activity on both sides of the abortion fight, with anti-abortion forces vowing to push for near-total bans in every state in the nation, and abortion rights groups insisting they would harness rage over the decision to take to the streets, fight back in the courts and push the Biden administration to do more to protect abortion rights,” the New York Times reports.

Vox: Why Democrats keep saying “Roe is on the ballot.”

Politico: “Multiple Republicans in tough races this fall — incumbents in districts Joe Biden carried — avoided abortion questions in the hours after the decision. Several others said only that it was an issue for states, not whether they’d support any legislation Democrats might put on the floor.”

“Democrats say that silence, or occasional deflection, is a telling sign that Republicans know abortion rights remain broadly popular with much of the electorate — and that the GOP will soon face the wrath of suburban and purple-district voters. Some Republicans, too, acknowledge that abortion rights polling generally favors the left. But they say voters are harder to pin down when it comes to ‘late-term’ abortion or ‘heartbeat’ bans — terms the GOP leveraged to define the debate in recent years as the religious right gained influence.”

“Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on Monday said she’s preparing votes on a number of bills protecting abortion as well as codifying landmark Supreme Court decisions as a response to the court overturning Roe v. Wade,” Axios reports.

“The Biden administration is promising to fight Republican efforts in the House of Representatives to pass a nationwide abortion ban at 15 weeks following the Supreme Court’s historic decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, calling it an attempt to strip away women’s rights,” CNN reports.

“After the Supreme Court overturned the landmark ruling and upheld the Mississippi law banning abortion after 15 weeks, some House Republicans who oppose abortion rights are pushing legislation to implement a similar abortion ban nationwide. Such legislation does not currently have the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster in the Senate, but the push for such a ban is a notable effort given that Republicans have a strong chance to take back control of the House in this year’s midterms.”

First Read: “Big, abrupt change doesn’t happen that often in this country. Yet when it does, it usually produces a political backlash for the side that’s most responsible for that change.”

“Think of the Civil Rights Era (which led to the Nixon and Reagan presidencies). Or Barack Obama and a diversifying America (which led to Trump). Or Trump’s presidency (which led to Joe Biden and a Democratic Congress).”

“But in addition to being abrupt, what makes Friday’s Supreme Court decision overturning a nationwide right to abortion especially susceptible to the political boomerang is that it’s swimming against the tide of public opinion.”

Aaron Blake: “The overturning of Roe v. Wade has long occupied an unusual space in conservative politics. On the one hand, the Republican Party has pushed for it for decades; on the other, even as it has done so, plenty within its ranks have assured that it wasn’t happening.”

“The party seemed to want the benefits of the push with its base, without the consequences of the unpopular prospect with the broader electorate. It also knew that overturning Roe was a red line for some key abortion-rights-supporting GOP senators whose votes were needed to confirm the justices who would eventually overturn Roe.“

“So it — and, crucially, those senators themselves — shrugged off the notion as if it were some kind of manufactured political issue.”

“All of those assurances have now proven foolhardy, at best, and cynical, at worst.”

David French: “Through it all, I was guided by two burning convictions—that Roe represented a grave moral and constitutional wrong and that I belonged to a national Christian community that loved its fellow citizens, believed in a holistic ethic of life, and was ready, willing, and able to rise to the challenge of creating a truly pro-life culture.”

“I believe only one of those things today.”

“In deep-red America, a wave of performative and punitive legislation is sweeping the land. In the abortion context, bounty-hunting laws in Texas, Idaho, and Oklahoma turn citizens against each other, incentivizing lawsuits even by people who haven’t been harmed by abortion. The pro-life movement, once solidly against prosecuting women who obtain abortions, is now split by an ‘abolitionist’ wing that would not only impose criminal penalties on mothers, it even calls into questions legal protections for the life of the mother when a pregnancy is physically perilous.”

A Texas abortion clinic said they had to turn away people seeking abortions away just minutes after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade on Friday, The 19th reports. The staff described people screaming, crying, and begging for help after being denied abortions.

From a Wall Street Journal editorial: “The fury of the left’s reaction isn’t merely about guns and abortion. It reflects their grief at having lost the Court as the vehicle for achieving policy goals they can’t get through legislatures. The cultural victories they achieved by judicial fiat will now have to be won by persuading voters. We understand their frustration, but they ought to try democracy for a change. They might even win the debate over abortion.”

“For the nearly half-century that Roe v. Wade was the law of the land, the most prominent opponents of abortion often urged an incremental approach to narrowing access to the procedure,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

“Now, having achieved a Supreme Court victory that overruled Roe and ended the constitutional right to an abortion, antiabortion advocates are considering what to do next.”

“Some powerful voices in the movement urge a measured approach guided by political realities post-Roe, seeking to ban the procedure after the first trimester in more moderate states and maintaining meaningful exceptions for rape and incest. Others view this as a once-in-a-generation moment and moral imperative to push for a complete end to abortion, especially in states where conservatives hold political power. The staunchest opponents want states to treat it as murder.”

David Frum: “The culture war raged most hotly from the ’70s to the next century’s ’20s. It polarized American society, dividing men from women, rural from urban, religious from secular, Anglo-Americans from more recent immigrant groups. At length, but only after a titanic constitutional struggle, the rural and religious side of the culture imposed its will on the urban and secular side. A decisive victory had been won, or so it seemed.”

“The culture war I’m talking about is the culture war over alcohol prohibition. From the end of Reconstruction to the First World War, probably more state and local elections turned on that one issue than on any other. The long struggle seemingly culminated in 1919, with the ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment and enactment by Congress of the National Prohibition Act, or the Volstead Act (as it became known). The amendment and the act together outlawed the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages in the United States and all its subject territories. Many urban and secular Americans experienced those events with the same feeling of doom as pro-choice Americans may feel today after the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade.”

“Only, it turns out that the Volstead Act was not the end of the story. As Prohibition became a nationwide reality, Americans rapidly changed their mind about the idea. Support for Prohibition declined, then collapsed. Not only was the Volstead Act repealed, in 1933, but the Constitution was further amended so that nobody could ever try such a thing ever again.”

Elected prosecutors across the country, including from 12 states with “trigger bans,” are saying they will not prosecute people who seek or provide abortion care, the Washington Post reports.

“As the fight over abortion rights shifted to courthouses around the country on Monday, Louisiana took center stage, when abortion providers successfully won a temporary injunction by challenging the state’s ‘trigger’ ban and clinics announced they would resume procedures in the coming days,” the New Orleans Times Picayune reports.

“The clinics in New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Shreveport shut their doors on Friday after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the landmark case that established the constitutional right to abortion. The high court’s ruling paved the way for Louisiana to immediately enact a dormant set of laws banning both surgical and medication abortions, without exception for cases of rape or incest.”

“The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that a high school football coach had a constitutional right to pray at the 50-yard line after his team’s games,” the New York Times reports.

“The vote was 6 to 3, with the court’s three liberal members in dissent.”

“The case pitted the rights of government workers to free speech and the free exercise of their faith against the Constitution’s prohibition of government endorsement of religion and the ability of public employers to regulate speech in the workplace. The decision was in tension with decades of Supreme Court precedents that forbade pressuring students to participate in religious activities.”

“Justice Clarence Thomas on Monday indicated that he believes the Supreme Court should reconsider a ruling that makes it more difficult to sue media organizations, saying he disagreed with the court’s decision to turn away an appeal in a defamation case,” Axios reports.

“The public listing of former President Donald Trump’s social media company took a fresh blow on Monday when the cash-rich shell company merging with Mr. Trump’s company disclosed in a regulatory filing that a federal grand jury in New York recently issued subpoenas to the company and its directors,” the New York Times reports.

“The grand jury subpoenas were issued within the past week.”

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol on Monday abruptly scheduled a hearing for Tuesday afternoon to hear what the panel called “recently obtained evidence” and take witness testimony, the New York Times reports.

The hearing is scheduled for 1 p.m., according to a news release issued by the committee, in which it provided no other details about the surprise session.

Punchbowl News: “The last-minute nature of this hearing signals that the committee has material that it needs to get into the public domain before next month. Sources close to the panel tell us that there were numerous new developments over the weekend, forcing this last-minute schedule shift.”

“As the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riots lays out Donald Trump’s obsessive efforts to overturn the 2020 election results, Trump allies have responded with the political equivalent of a collective eye roll,” Politico reports.

“But elsewhere in the party, operatives are taking notice. The former president is being damaged, they say — perhaps not fatally, but notably so.”

Said an adviser to Gov. Ron DeSantis (R): “I think the January 6 hearings are continuation of the exhausting circus that surrounds Trump. There are of course the lunchbox Republicans who think this is a ‘mass conspiracy,’ but among the donor class many are just tired of this.”

He added: “It’s a shitshow. Some donors are getting sick of the shitshow.”

“The FBI seized the phone of former President Donald Trump’s election attorney John Eastman last week, according to a new court filing from the lawyer,” CNN reports.

“About six federal investigators approached the right-wing lawyer in New Mexico when he was exiting a restaurant after dinner with his wife and a friend, according to the court filings. Agents were able to get access to Eastman’s email accounts on his iPhone 12 Pro.”

“Eastman contends the agents ‘forced’ him to unlock his phone.”

New York Times: “The seizure of Mr. Eastman’s phone last week is the latest evidence that the Justice Department is intensifying its criminal investigation into the various strands of Mr. Trump’s efforts to remain in power after he was defeated in his bid for re-election.”

“The Group of Seven economic powers are set to commit themselves to supporting Ukraine for the long haul, with the U.S. preparing to announce the purchase of an advanced surface-to-air missile system for Kyiv,” the AP reports.

“Leaders are also set to announce an agreement to pursue a price cap on Russian oil, raise tariffs on Russian goods and impose new sanctions on hundreds of officials and entities supporting the four month long war.”

“Russia defaulted on its foreign-currency sovereign debt for the first time in a century, the culmination of ever-tougher Western sanctions that shut down payment routes to overseas creditors,” Bloomberg reports.

“For months, the country found paths around the penalties imposed after the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. But at the end of the day on Sunday, the grace period on about $100 million of snared interest payments due May 27 expired, a deadline considered an event of default if missed.”

Axios: “This is the foreseeable outcome of sanctions imposed due to the invasion of Ukraine, even though Russia had successfully pushed off the inevitable for months. For now, the default is mostly notable for its symbolism as Russia’s first foreign debt default since 1918, reflecting the country’s international pariah status and crumbling economy.”

Russia attacked the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, early on Sunday, striking at least two residential buildings, the AP reports.

“A worker at a grocery store in New York was arrested after slapping Rudy Giuliani on the back and calling him a ‘scumbag’ during a campaign event Sunday for his son, a GOP candidate for governor,” the HuffPost reports.

“The incident, which was initially cast as an assault, was shared in video footage in the hours after the encounter at a ShopRite store on Staten Island. A man wearing a mask is seen walking by Giuliani before hitting him on the back with an outstretched hand. It’s unclear how hard the man slapped the former New York City mayor, who looked surprised by the encounter but didn’t seem to be physically reeling.”

The Economist: “After the fallout of the Supreme Court’s decision, America will be more dangerously divided. In the most doctrinaire pro-life states, the abortion regime will be more austere than that of Pakistan or Saudi Arabia, which permit the procedure to preserve the health, not just the life, of the mother. Democratic-dominated states have codified Roe’s right to abortion up to the point of fetal viability, a more permissive standard that that of Norway and Sweden, which have gestational limits for terminating pregnancies at 12 and 18 weeks, respectively. In four states and the District of Columbia, late-term abortion is legally permissible even if the mother’s health is not at risk. And the war over reproductive rights will heat up rather than cool down.”

“Mike Pence, the former vice-president who seems to be contemplating a presidential run, has called for a nationwide ban. In Missouri, doctrinaire legislators are pitching laws to prevent women from travelling out of state for the procedure. Mississippi has passed a law to restrict access to mifepristone—one of the two drugs needed for medically induced abortions, which are now the most common type. Even more creative means to dissuade women from seeking abortions are sure to be devised. The Department of Justice is vowing to fight Republican-led states on these restrictions, auguring even more legal warring.”

Pentagon is working to ensure that members of the military, their families and its civilian employees will still have access to “reproductive health care” after the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, Axios reports.

Politico reports the Defense Department currently does not have a policy to accommodate service members or employees who are seeking an abortion but are stationed in a state that has outlawed abortion.

Sen Ron Johnson (R-WI) said last week he “had no hand” in an effort to deliver illegitimate “alternate” Electoral College ballots, but now he says he coordinated the attempted delivery with a Wisconsin attorney and was given the fake electors by Rep. Mike Kelly’s (R-PA) office, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

However, Kelly’s office called Johnson’s allegation “patently false.”

“Donald Trump never stopped raising funds from his supporters after the 2020 presidential race,” Forbes reports.

“His companies, meanwhile, continued to charge his political outfits for goods and services. As a result, the former president has been able to convert about $1.3 million of donor money into business revenue since he lost the 2020 election.”

Fox News host Brian Kilmeade attacked Donald Trump on Sunday and said he has seen no evidence that proves the former president’s claims of election fraud, the HuffPost reports.

Said Kilmeade: “I’ve said this before: I believe from the time when the election results came in until January 6th is the worst moment of Donald Trump’s political career.”

He added: “I think how you lose in life defines who you are. And even if there are things that bother you, welcome to the world. A lot of times times things don’t work out, and are so-called ‘unfair.’ Your team couldn’t prove the vote was rigged, move on.”

CNN: “For Biden’s economic team, the process is a continuation of more than a year of all-hands-on-deck approaches to confront pop-up crises — ‘basically whack-a-mole’ was how one senior White House official referred to it — only to immediately confront another challenge.”

Janan Ganesh: “The trend of events is not towards strongmen but towards ungovernability.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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