“Allies of Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) are rethinking their loyalty to Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor (R), signaling cracks in a long-standing political partnership that many expected would continue with Kasich’s team backing Taylor’s own run for governor in 2018. The tension stems from Taylor’s recent” endorsement of incoming state GOP Chair Jane Timken, who with President Trump’s blessing unseated Kasich’s choice, former chair Matt Borges.
“[I]t could cost Taylor with the term-limited Kasich and his stable of GOP operatives who helped elevate her to the lieutenant governor’s office. Previously, Kasich had indicated he would support Taylor.” (cleveland.com)
A strategy memo apparently written by Kasich allies says Taylor “double crossed” Kasich and that Kasich’s “legacy is what is at stake. If [Secretary of State Jon] Husted or a demorat [sic] becomes governor, it will all be erased. … John Kasich needs to quietly offer his endorsement to [state Attorney General] Mike DeWine.” (WOIO)
FLEX THOSE MUSCLES. State Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni (D) “said he’s raised $1.4 million ‘over the last couple of years directly and indirectly as minority leader’ primarily for the Democratic caucus. He raised about $30,000 at a Boardman fundraiser on Tuesday and has another fundraiser in Columbus next week.”
Schiavoni also said he may run for Rep. Tim Ryan’s (D) seat if Ryan runs for governor.
Schiavoni: “If he runs [for governor], I don’t know if I’d run for Congress.” (Youngstown Vindicator)
Schiavoni floated his name to replace Ryan in 2015 when Ryan was considering a bid against Sen. Rob Portman (R).
What We're Following See More »
"White House chief of staff John Kelly has tapped Chris Liddell, a senior White House aide and former executive at Microsoft and General Motors, as his deputy." Prior to his appointment, Kelly had just one deputy: "Joe Hagin, who focuses on the day-to-day operations" in the White House. "Up until now, the White House had not named a deputy chief of staff for policy, though several aides, including [DHS Secretary Kirstjen] Nielsen, had informally played that role."
The Supreme Court on Monday "rejected a plea to undertake a historic reassessment of the constitutionality of the death penalty nationwide. The court denied certiorari in Hidalgo v. Arizona, which challenged the constitutionality of that state’s death penalty statute but also attacked capital punishment generally 'in light of contemporary standards of decency.'" The Court did not act on another case, Evans v. Mississippi, which would have prompted a broader review of the death penalty. "Justice Stephen Breyer, joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan issued a separate statement agreeing that the Hidalgo case should be denied because the record in the case was not fully developed, but hoping a future case would be a better platform for reviewing capital punishment."
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman begins his two-week visit to the U.S. this week, meeting with "political and business leaders in Washington, New York, Silicon Valley and elsewhere" in an effort to shore up financial support for his government and rehabilitate its image abroad. "The crown prince employed a similar public relations strategy on a three-day visit to the UK," where he met with "an array of British business and defense leaders." Bin Salman has been widely criticized for his alleged political chicanery in the Gulf, and for Saudi Arabia's devastating air campaign in neighboring Yemen.
A fourth package bomb injured two people in Austin on Sunday evening, "which the police chief says was caused by a tripwire and showed 'a different level of skill' than the package bombs used in the three prior attacks." The police are still searching for the perpetrator, and have warned residents to not pick up or approach suspicious packages. Previous explosions, which the police believe are connected, have killed two and wounded several others.
White House Lawyer Ty Cobb said that President Trump not considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller. Speculation swirled after Trump attacked the investigation on Twitter, and called out Mueller directly for the first time. “In response to media speculation and related questions being posed to the Administration," Cobb said, "...the President is not considering or discussing the firing of the Special Counsel, Robert Mueller." Several members of Congress, "including some top Republicans, warned Trump to not even think about terminating Mueller."