John Podesta, Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign chair, endorsed former Rep. Tom Perriello (D) over Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) on Friday.
Podesta: Both are strong candidates for Virginia governor, but Perriello is the better choice for the party’s future during a Trump presidency.” (Washington Post)
FIRE IN THE BELLY. Northam at a fundraiser for Rep. Gerald Connolly (D) gave “fiery remarks that sometimes bordered on shouting. … Northam’s newfound aggression may be paying early dividends. He crushed Perriello in the event’s straw poll.”
Northam: “As people get to know me a little bit better, they see I’ve got a lot of fire in my belly and have been in tremendous fights all my life.” (Washington Post)
CHANGE OF PACE. “With a ravenous appetite for rhetorical bombast, Stewart is campaigning as an unapologetic disciple of President Trump, echoing the president’s populist diatribes against the Republican establishment, undocumented immigrants, political correctness and the media. Yet in purple Virginia, the only Southern state that Trump lost to … Hillary Clinton, Stewart is struggling to captivate voters.”
Conservative radio host John Fredericks: “He may own the Trump style, but he doesn’t own the Trump brand. The Trump people don’t like him.”
“Stewart … has won election as chairman four times in campaigns fueled by contributions from developers and other establishment types. He said that qualifies him as ‘part of the Prince William establishment but not the Virginia establishment.’”
“At various points in his political career in Prince William, Stewart told reporters he did not want to be known as the ‘immigration man’ and said he hoped to build ties to Latinos and other minorities. To win in Northern Virginia, Republicans needed to be inclusive and emulate his minority outreach, he said two years ago.” (Washington Post)
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Faced with a choice of Trump's way or the highway, the GOP chose the highway. In the worst possible development for the GOP, Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the healthcare bill from the floor for the second day in a row—even after President Trump demanded an up-or-down vote last night. According to multiple reports, Trump himself called Ryan at about 3 p.m. to tell him to cancel the vote. Trump has since blamed Democrats for the defeat. It's unclear when the legislation will be revisited.
"House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) said he and ranking Democrat Adam Schiff of California have asked FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Mike Rogers to testify behind closed doors about the committee's ongoing investigation into alleged ties between the Trump administration and Russia." He also said former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort will also testify.