State House Minority Leader David Baria (D) announced Wednesday that he will challenge Sen. Roger Wicker (R).
Baria: “I want to give voters a true choice, and I plan to spend the campaign listening to voters and working hard to earn their trust.”
Baria “has served in the state House since 2012 and has served as minority leader since 2016. He previously served a single term in the state Senate.” (Mississippi Today)
MAKING IT OFFICIAL. State Sen. Chris McDaniel (R) launched his campaign Wednesday at a rally in Ellisville, MS. “In a speech that slammed Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and other GOP senators, and praised the president … McDaniel said conservatives need to stand their ground and he wanted to go to Washington to be his state’s bulldog, not leadership’s lapdog.” (Wall Street Journal)
McDaniel “didn’t rule out dropping out of the current Senate race and running for Mississippi’s other seat if [Sen. Thad] Cochran (R) steps down early as many expect.” (Jackson Clarion-Ledger)
REACTION. Following McDaniel’s kickoff, Wicker campaign manager Justin Brasell blasted McDaniel for being insufficiently supportive of Trump. Brasell: “While Roger Wicker was speaking on Donald Trump’s behalf at the Republican National Convention and traveling the country to help elect President Trump and Republican U.S. Senators, Chris McDaniel was missing. After attacking and insulting Donald Trump and his supporters in the primary, Senator McDaniel did nothing to help elect our President.” (release)
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"Federal prosecutors have charged a former software engineer at the center of a huge C.I.A. breach with stealing classified information, theft of government property and lying to the F.B.I. The engineer, Joshua A. Schulte, 29, of New York, had been the main suspect in one of the worst losses of classified documents in the spy agency’s history. Government investigators suspect that he provided WikiLeaks, the anti-secrecy organization, with a stolen archive of documents detailing the C.I.A.’s hacking operations, but they had not initially charged him in that crime."
"The Senate voted Monday to reimpose the U.S. ban on Chinese telecom giant ZTE, in a rebuke to President Donald Trump and his efforts to keep the company in business. The provision targeting ZTE was part of the National Defense Authorization Act, a must-pass defense spending bill that cleared the Senate by a vote of 85-10. It must now be reconciled with the House version of the measure, which takes a narrower approach to ZTE." Separately, Trump is directing U.S Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to identify $200 billion more in tariffs on Chinese products.
"Two longtime associates of President Donald Trump are now acknowledging a previously undisclosed contact in May 2016 with a Russian who they say offered dirt on Hillary Clinton. Roger Stone and Michael Caputo say they forgot to tell investigators about their contact with a Russian national who goes by the name Henry Greenberg — even though they say Greenberg offered to sell incriminating information to the Trump campaign for $2 million."
"As Trump signed a joint statement with Kim Jong Un that offered few details on how the North Korean leader would make good on his vow to denuclearize, Republicans on Capitol Hill said Tuesday that they want and expect the White House to submit any final agreement for their approval." Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell called for any agreement to be in the form of a treaty.
President Trump announced that the United States will suspend "war games" with South Korea, which are "inappropriate" given his meeting with North Korean leader Kim-Jong Un. "We will be stopping the war games which will save us a tremendous amount of money," said Trump, "unless and until we see the future negotiation is not going along like it should." The military exercises "carried out each year by the US and South Korean militaries have been consistently cited by Pyongyang as a US rehearsal for war, and a reason it needs to build a nuclear arsenal."