BIDEN PREPARES TO STEAL MONEY FROM TAXPAYERS… WSJ: Biden Planning Student-Loan Announcement Wednesday
White House officials are planning for President Biden to make an announcement on Wednesday about his proposal for dealing with student-loan debt, according to people familiar with the matter.
The president and his senior aides have for months been weighing whether to cancel some federal student loan debt. Mr. Biden’s top advisers have discussed several proposals, including eliminating $10,000 in federal student-loan debt for borrowers making less than $125,000 a year, the people said. The president’s advisers have also discussed extending a pandemic pause on federal student-loan payments.
The White House has kept the details of the decision closely guarded. Only a small group of Mr. Biden’s top aides have been informed of his plans, some of the people said.
Mr. Biden is scheduled to return to the White House on Wednesday from Delaware, where he is on vacation with his family. The president has said he would announce a decision on student loans by Aug. 31.
SCHEME WILL TAKE $2,000 FROM EVERY AMERICAN TAXPAYER: ESTIMATE… NATIONAL TAXPAYERS UNION FOUNDATION: Cost of Student Debt Cancelation Could Average $2,000 Per Taxpayer
Public reporting indicates President Biden may soon announce executive action canceling federal student loan debt for a large set of borrowers. Though parameters of the student debt cancellation have yet to be announced, the Biden administration may cancel $10,000 of debt per borrower for borrowers making $125,000 in income per year or less.
Based on projections from the Penn Wharton Budget Model for the total cost of such cancellation, we estimate President Biden’s plan would cost the average taxpayer over $2,000.
The Penn Wharton Budget Model (PWBM) released a policy report on Tuesday that estimated the total cost of $10,000 in debt cancellation for borrowers making less than $125,000 per year would be $329.1 billion over 10 years. There were just under 158 million taxpayers in 2019 according to the IRS, meaning that the average cost of debt cancellation is $2,085.59 per taxpayer.
CHARLES COOKE: Joe Biden Illegally ‘Canceling’ Student Loans Would Be a Middle Finger to America
[I]t would represent a giant middle finger to America. It would represent a middle finger to the Constitution, which vests legislative power in Congress, not the president. It would represent a middle finger to Congress, which has not given the executive branch the authority to give $10,000 each to millions of college students. It would represent a middle finger to the Department of Education, which found last year that it “does not have statutory authority to provide blanket or mass cancellation, compromise, discharge, or forgiveness of student loan principal balances, and/or to materially modify the repayment amounts or terms thereof.” Nancy Pelosi confirmed last summer that “the president can’t do it — so that’s not even a discussion.” “Not everybody realizes that,” she said, “but the president can only postpone, delay but not forgive.” Biden’s response? A middle finger.
FLASHBACK… MAY 2022… OBAMA ECONOMIST SAY BIDEN IS MAKING A BIG MISTAKE… KATHARINE ABRAHAM w/ MICHAEL STRAIN: Biden’s About to Make a Big Mistake on Student Loans
One of the bedrock principles of sound economic policy is that similarly situated people should be treated similarly. Student loan forgiveness would take a hatchet to this principle. It would be a slap in the face to individuals from modest backgrounds who attended college but never took on debt or have already paid it off. What would the administration say to a person who struggled for years to pay off her student loans, finally becoming debt free last month? Or to the people who chose to attend their local community college rather than a more expensive four-year college because they did not want to borrow? Or to the people who avoided debt by serving in the military to qualify for GI Bill benefits?
The policy also would privilege student debtors above other borrowers. This is hard to justify. People who suffer serious injuries from car accidents may have substantial medical debt through no fault of their own, while student borrowers made a choice to take out debt. What would the administration say to the indebted survivor of a car accident, struggling to pay off medical bills?
ANOTHER OBAMA ECONOMIST — LARRY SUMMERS: I hope the Administration does not contribute to inflation macro economically by offering unreasonably generous student loan relief or micro economically by encouraging college tuition increases. (THREAD)
Every dollar spent on student loan relief is a dollar that could have gone to support those who don’t get the opportunity to go to college.
Student loan debt relief is spending that raises demand and increases inflation. It consumes resources that could be better used helping those who did not, for whatever reason, have the chance to attend college. It will also tend to be inflationary by raising tuitions.
BILLIONS MORE HEADED TO UKRAINE… WAPO: US to send $3 billion in aid to Ukraine as war hits 6 months
WASHINGTON — As Russia’s war on Ukraine drags on, U.S. security assistance is shifting to a longer-term campaign that will likely keep more American military troops in Europe into the future, including imminent plans to announce an additional roughly $3 billion in aid to train and equip Ukrainian forces to fight for years to come, U.S. officials said.
U.S. officials told The Associated Press that the package is expected to be announced Wednesday, the day the war hits the six-month mark and Ukraine celebrates its independence day. The money will fund contracts for as many as three types of drones, and other weapons, ammunition and equipment that may not see the battlefront for a year or two, they said.
The total of the aid package — which is being provided under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative and is the largest to date— could change a bit overnight, but not likely by much. Officials said that it will include money for the small, hand-launched Puma drones, the longer-endurance Scan Eagle surveillance drones, which are launched by catapult, and, for the first time, the British Vampire drone system, which can be launched off ships.
FAUCI: I DIDN’T SHUT DOWN ANYTHING, AND I’M GLAD WE DID SHUT THINGS DOWN… Fox News’ Neil Cavuto Asks Fauci If He Regrets ‘Shutting Down’ The US Economy (VIDEO)
Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto asked White House Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci on Tuesday if he regrets “shutting down” the U.S. economy.
Cavuto questioned Fauci over his past decisions regarding COVID-19 protocols, including masks and shutting down the economy and asked if he had any regrets.
“No, I don’t,” Fauci said. “In fact, I think we need to make sure that your listeners understand [that] I didn’t shut down anything. There was a lot of consideration among the White House Task Force that we were reaching the point where the hospitals, such as in New York City and other places, were being strained to the point of practically being overwhelmed. When Dr. [Deborah] Birx and I came with the proposal that we take 15 days to essentially get to the point where we slow if not shut some things down, not completely, then the record will show, Neil, that we didn’t recommend shutting everything down. We wanted a pause to flatten the curve.”
TUESDAY’S ELECTION RESULTS…
GOP MAKES BIG SCHOOL BOARD GAINS IN FLORIDA… DOMINATES SARASOTA… FOX: DeSantis-backed candidates flip Florida school board from liberal to conservative
Conservatives across the state of Florida celebrated on Tuesday night after control of the Sarasota County School Board shifted from liberal to conservative.
Bridget Ziegler, Robyn Marinelli, and Timothy Enos were all endorsed by Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and were all victorious Tuesday night in their elections for the Sarasota School board.
Various conservatives in the state touted the victories and suggested they represented a shift against Critical Race Theory and other “woke” policies that DeSantis and Republicans in Florida have railed against.
“Sarasota School Board had a 3-2 liberal majority,” Christina Pushaw, rapid response director for DeSantis’s reelection campaign, tweeted on Tuesday night.
“Today @RonDeSantisFL endorsed candidates won and flipped the school board so it’s now 4-1 anti-woke indoctrination and pro parental rights.”
MIAMI DADE SCHOOL BOARD GOES MAJORITY CONSERVATIVE… 1776 PROJECT PAC: HUGE: Both of our candidates in Miami Dade County, Florida just WON their elections, flipping the school board conservative. Miami Dade is now the LARGEST county in America with a conservative school board majority. Congrats to Roberto Alonso and Monica Colucci.
TED BRIDIS, FORMER AP REPORTER: Whopping 25 of 30 conservative school board candidates endorsed by@GovRonDeSantis win seats across Florida, only five defeated. Will make easier than ever to reimagine classroom politics in public schools. (DESANTIS ENDORSEMENT LIST)
RON DESANTIS: “Florida is the state where woke goes to die.” (VIDEO)
MORE… DESANTIS: “We’re not just running against a political party or candidate. We’re also running against national corporate media. […] So put on the full armor of God and take a stand against the left’s schemes.” (VIDEO)
DEMS TAP FORMER REPUBLICAN TO FACE DESANTIS… CRIST BEAT WOMAN WHO MADE INFANTICIDE THE CENTERPIECE OF HER CAMPAIGN… AP: Florida Democrats choose Rep. Crist to challenge DeSantis
MIAMI (AP) — U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist won the Democratic nomination for governor in Florida, setting him up to challenge Gov. Ron DeSantis this fall in a campaign that the Republican incumbent sees as the first step toward a potential White House run.
In selecting Crist on Tuesday, Florida Democrats sided with a candidate backed by many in the party’s establishment who viewed him as the safest choice, even after he lost his previous two statewide elections. The 66-year-old moderate, who served as Florida’s Republican governor a decade ago, hopes to appeal to voters in Florida’s teeming suburbs as Democrats seek to reverse a losing pattern in a state that was recently seen as a perennial political battleground. […]
Crist won the Democratic nomination over Nikki Fried, the state agriculture commissioner. She staked out a more progressive campaign and was particularly vocal in defending abortion and LGBTQ rights.
DEMS PICK VAL DEMINGS TO FACE MARCO RUBIO… SHE USES VICTORY SPEECH TO PUSH INFANTICIDE… RECOUNT: “I dream of an America where we protect constitutional rights like a woman’s right to choose … We’re not going back to being treated like property.” — Val Demings delivers passionate speech after winning Florida’s Democratic nomination for Senate to face Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) (VIDEO)
RUBIO’S SPEECH: DEMINGS BARELY DOES HER CURRENT JOB… RECOUNT: “Even the House of Representatives has become a work from home place. You know that my opponent Val Demings, how many times she has voted from her pajamas, or whatever she was wearing?” (VIDEO)
MORE… “The Democratic Party — and I say this with sadness. A little bit of sadness, not a lot of sadness. — The Democratic Party has been taken over by radical left-wing lunatics, laptop liberals, and Marxist misfits […] I wish this country had two normal political parties … We debate crazy things, insanity.” (VIDEO)
GAETZ EASILY HOLDS ON IN PRIMARY… NBC: Gaetz wins GOP primary in Florida after fending off attacks over sex trafficking investigation
MIAMI — Rep. Matt Gaetz defeated his Republican primary opponent Tuesday in one of Florida’s most conservative congressional districts, NBC News projects, as voters declined to hold a federal sex crimes investigation against him.
Gaetz, the self-styled firebrand endorsed by former President Donald Trump, who also managed Gov. Ron DeSantis’s transition team in 2019, spent $1.1 million on local TV ads to drive home his MAGA bona fides. Challenger Mark Lombardo spent at least $500,000 calling Gaetz’s character into question in three ads.
But ultimately, Trump’s endorsement — and Gaetz’s deep roots and relentless campaigning in the district — carried the day for Gaetz, who was a state representative from the Panhandle area before he won his congressional seat in 2016.
TRUMP CONGRATULATES… RECOUNT: Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) says Donald Trump called him to congratulate him on his primary victory. Gaetz also says Trump “told the great voters in Northwest Florida to be ready, because we’ve got another big win coming in 2024.” (VIDEO)
GAETZ WILL NOW FACE WOMAN WHO LIED ABOUT CORONAVIRUS DATA… NYT: A former coronavirus data manager who clashed with DeSantis will challenge Gaetz in Florida.
Rebekah D. Jones, a former data manager for the Florida Department of Health, defeated Peggy Schiller in the Democratic primary, according to The Associated Press, after a confusing legal back-and-forth over whether Ms. Jones was eligible to appear on the ballot. […]
That clash put a spotlight on Ms. Jones in 2020, when she claimed that she had been fired from her government job for refusing to suppress virus data from the public. In what became a monthslong saga, Ms. Jones filed a whistle-blower complaint, turned into a vocal critic of Mr. DeSantis and was eventually criminally charged with accessing a state computer and downloading a file without authorization.
The criminal case against Ms. Jones is pending. In May, an inspector general for the Department of Health found that three allegations that Ms. Jones had made against several health officials were “unsubstantiated.”
ONE OTHER PIECE OF MATT GAETZ NEWS… AXIOS: Florida man sentenced to 5 years in prison for plot to defraud Gaetz’s father
A federal judge has sentenced a Florida man to five years in prison after he pleaded guilty to trying to defraud the father of Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) out of $25 million. […]
Stephen Alford perpetrated an alleged scheme “to obtain money based upon false promises or guarantees he made” to Gaetz’s father that he “could deliver a Presidential Pardon for a family member” after the Republican Congress member became the target of a federal sex trafficking investigation, according to the Justice Department. […]
Gaetz has said that the sexual misconduct allegations leveled against him were false and “rooted in an extortion effort” against his family for $25 million “in exchange for making this case go away.”
NADLER BODYSLAMS MALONEY… NYT: Nadler Routs Maloney in Marquee Showdown of Bruising New York Primaries
Representative Jerrold Nadler, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, handily defeated his longtime congressional neighbor, Carolyn B. Maloney, in a bruising three-way primary battle on Tuesday that was preordained to end one of the powerful Democrats’ political careers. […]
He won the contest for New York’s redrawn 12th District with 56 percent of the vote, compared with Ms. Maloney’s 24 percent, with 93 percent of votes counted. A third candidate, Suraj Patel, earned 19 percent, siphoning crucial votes away from Ms. Maloney, whom he nearly beat two years ago.
DCCC CHAIRMAN EASILY SURVIVES… AXIOS: Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney soundly defeats progressive challenger
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday beat back a fierce primary challenge from progressive state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi by a roughly two-to-one margin in New York’s 17th District, according to the AP.
LEVI STRAUSS HEIR SET TO BECOME MANHATTAN’S CONGRESSMAN… AXIOS: Former impeachment lawyer Dan Goldman unseats Rep. Mondaire Jones
Former impeachment lawyer Dan Goldman on Tuesday defeated a crowded field of primary rivals in New York’s 10th district, including Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.), according to AP.
Why it matters: Goldman is poised to be the first new member of Congress most residents of the Manhattan and Brooklyn-based district have had in decades, after a chaotic redistricting process carved out a brand new district in the heart of New York City with no incumbent.
GOLDMAN WILL BECOME ONE OF THE RICHEST MEMBERS OF CONGRESS… WORTH NEARLY $253 MILLION…
DEM WINS SWING DISTRICT IN SPECIAL ELECTION… RUNS ON BABY DEATH… NATIONAL DEMOCRATS BUOYED… POLITICO: Democrat Pat Ryan wins bellwether special election in New York’s Hudson Valley
ALBANY, N.Y. — Democrat Pat Ryan won a special election Tuesday in a swing district in New York’s Hudson Valley, a significant victory for his party in a seat which has been closely watched as the country’s best bellwether this summer.
Ryan, the Ulster County executive, led Republican Marc Molinaro with 51 percent of the vote when the Associated Press called the race shortly after midnight. The district is closely divided: President Joe Biden carried it by fewer than 2 percentage points in 2020. […]
Ryan’s television ads hammered on the need to elect a representative who would fight for abortion rights in the wake of the Supreme Court’s June decision overturning Roe v. Wade, while Molinaro, the Dutchess County executive, centered his campaign on crime and inflation.
House special election results since start of June:
#CA22 (6/7, Trump +5): R+24
#TX34 (6/14, Biden +4): R+5
#NE01 (6/28, Trump +11): R+5
#MN01 (8/9, Trump +10): R+4
#NY19 (8/23, Biden +2): D+2
#NY23 (8/23, Trump +11): R+7
But the caution flag on Dem overperformance? These have all been low-turnout specials decided by a fraction of November’s likely electorate. Here’s special election votes as a % of total 2020 votes cast:
For context: last November, when Rs massively outperformed in NJ/VA, here was the turnout as a % of total 2020 votes cast:
This isn’t to say the enviro hasn’t improved for Dems. It has. But specials can’t tell us extent of improvement w/ the fuller electorate.
LETTING CRIMINAL SUSPECTS GO WITHOUT BAIL LED TO A LOT MORE CRIME IN ONE CALIF. COUNTY… FOX: California county saw 70% of criminal suspects released on $0 bail commit new crimes: DA
A California district attorney has found that more than 70% of criminal suspects released on $0 bail between 2020 and 2021 in his county committed new crimes.
The California Judicial Council in April 2020 implemented the statewide Emergency Bail Schedule, or $0 bail, which supporters say makes the criminal justice system more fair for those who cannot afford to get released.
“When over 70% of the people released under mandated $0 bail policies go on to commit additional crime(s), including violent offenses such as robbery and murder, there is simply no rational public safety-related basis to continue such a practice post-pandemic, especially in light of the increasing violent crime rates across California,” Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig said in a Monday statement.
TOP RECORD LABEL JUST CANCELED A ROBOT RAPPER… NY TIMES: Capitol Drops ‘Virtual Rapper’ FN Meka After Backlash Over Stereotypes
Capitol Music Group, the company that houses major record labels including Capitol and Blue Note, said on Tuesday that it was severing ties with its latest controversial artist: FN Meka, a virtual “robot rapper” powered partly by artificial intelligence, who boasts more than 10 million followers on TikTok.
The company had previously teased the project — the first augmented reality artist to sign to a major label, it said — as “just a preview of what’s to come.” Yet after growing backlash to what skeptical observers said amounted to digital blackface — including content that seemed to trivialize incarceration and police brutality — Capitol said it had “severed ties with the FN Meka project, effective immediately.”
The company added in a statement: “We offer our deepest apologies to the Black community for our insensitivity in signing this project without asking enough questions about equity and the creative process behind it. We thank those who have reached out to us with constructive feedback in the past couple of days — your input was invaluable as we came to the decision to end our association with the project.”