President Trump’s U.N. Speech: ‘America First’ and an Iran Rebuke

CHARLOTTE, NC — President Trump did not say “America First”; but he didn’t have to. His message this week to world leaders was the same one his administration has been sharing since he was elected.

In a speech influenced by his senior domestic adviser Stephen Miller and national security adviser John Bolton, Trump rejected globalism and affirmed the U.S. withdrawal from international agreements.

“America will always choose independence and cooperation over global governance, control and domination,” Trump said.

President Trump’s boasts about accomplishments in the first two years of his presidency also drew laughter from the assembled leaders.

WCCB political contributor, Mary C. Curtis weighs in on Trump’s speech and the reaction.

Kavanaugh’s Accuser Wants FBI Investigation Before Testifying

CHARLOTTE, NC — The woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault isn’t ready to testify just yet. Christine Blasey Ford’s legal team says their client won’t testify in a public hearing offered by Republicans unless the FBI first investigates her allegations. Ford says Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were at a high school party in the 80’s. Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied the accusations.

The allegations brought against Kavanaugh echo a similar incident in 1991, when Anita Hillaccused then SCOTUS nominee Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment and was called to publicly testify.

Bob Woodward’s Bombshell Book on the Trump White House

CHARLOTTE, NC — Bob Woodward’s ‘Fear,’ the Long-Awaited Book on the Trump Presidency.  Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward has written books on every president since Richard Nixon. The latest, “Fear,” on Donald Trump’s administration has garnered the Watergate reporter headlines, again. In it, he quotes chief of staff John Kelly as saying, “We’re in Crazytown,” a statement Kelly has denied saying. The book joins others from Omarosa and Michael Wolff on the best-seller list. (Mary Curtis)

Is the Woodward book being taken more seriously, and why? WCCB Political Contributor Mary C. Curtis weighs in.

Saying Goodbye to Political and Cultural Icons

Though at first glance they might not seem to have much in common, the legacies of John McCain and Aretha Franklin intersect in some surprising ways. This week, the world and their own communities offer final farewells to two icons who affected our culture and politics.

Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort, and What’s Next?

CHARLOTTE. NC — On Tuesday, former Trump lawyer/fixer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to eight charges in federal court in New York, including campaign finance violations for payoffs to influence the 2016 election on behalf of a candidate – not identified, though widely assumed to be Donald Trump. Meanwhile, in a Virginia courtroom, Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight of 18 counts: five counts of filing false tax returns, one count of not filing a report on a foreign bank account and two bank fraud counts.

Omarosa vs. Trump: Reality-Show Drama Meets Politics

CHARLOTTE, NC — In a move that seems like a plot twist in a reality show, Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former and fired top aide to Donald Trump is not going quietly. She has a new book, “Unhinged,” which asserts that the president is unfit. And she has tapes. The president has gone on the attack, with tweets and insults. And now there is a lawsuit over a non-disclosure agreement she signed when she worked for the campaign.

What does an Ohio special election say about the November midterm elections?

In an Ohio congressional district that has sent Republicans to Washington for decades, the special election race on Tuesday is currently too close to call, with Republican Troy Balderson leading Democrat Danny O’Connor by less than one percentage point. What does it mean for chances of a November blue or red wave? Did President Trump’s weekend rally there help Balderson? What about suburban GOP women? What about turnout? Will Democrats re-think Nancy Pelosi as speaker, and will that to help their chances?

More questions, as the two Ohio candidates will meet again in November.

How Foreign Influence on Social Media Affects Elections

CHARLOTTE, NC — Facebook said this week that it has detected and removed 32 pages and fake accounts that it identified – built to sow divisions in the U.S. and potentially disrupt the midterm elections. Earlier, Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri announced thwarted attempts to break into her office’s accounts.

The tactics are similar to those our intelligence agencies say have been used by Russia to influence elections in the U.S. and other countries.

Wednesday, the Senate Intelligence Committee has scheduled an open meeting to examine how foreign intelligence agencies conduct influence campaigns in the U.S. through various social media platforms.

Trump’s Plan To Aid Farmers Impacted By Trump’s Trade War

Political contributor Mary C Curtis weighs in on the local impact and President Trump’s plan to offer aid to US farmers caught in his trade war.

Trump is promising 12 billion dollars in emergency relief to help farmers hurt by retaliation from other countries, like China and the European Union.

President Trump’s Walk-back

CNN – Donald Trump did something he rarely does — admit a mistake. The President has been taking a pounding from both sides of the political aisle over his comments during the Helsinki, Finland, summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. So Trump tried some cleanup at the White House, now saying he misspoke when he said, “I don’t see any reason why it would be” Russia that interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

Reading prepared remarks to reporters in the Cabinet Room, Trump said, “The sentence should have been: ‘I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia.” He also said he accepted the US intelligence community’s conclusion that the Russians meddled in the election, something he wouldn’t do while standing right next to Putin on Monday. But even this came with a caveat from Trump: “It could be other people also.”