“You must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing.”
- Andrew Jackson
HELP FROM HILLARY’S HUSBAND: A more subdued group of speakers followed Monday’s captivating kickoff cast, featuring Mothers of the Movement - a group of women who lost children in cases that inspired the Black Lives Matter movement, along with other Clinton surrogates, but sentiment quickly shifted when President Bill Clinton took the stage in primetime to extol the virtues of his wife, the former First Lady and possible president. There’s never been quite a speech like the one he gave – speaking in the unprecedented role of husband, former president and potential first gentleman. President Clinton was the anchor of the night and the convention as a whole so far, but will his centrist values and praise for his wife rally any part of the progressive wing and kick-start momentum into the final days?
BERNIE OR BUST: Bernie Sanders is certainly feeling the love from his supporters, but will it ever translate to Hillary Clinton and at what length are Sanders holdouts willing to continue their temper tantrums when they put the party at risk of losing the election? The jeering contingent of backers has been so insistent about never supporting Clinton that Sanders himself can’t even reel them in – his revolution is running amok. Sanders formally nominated Clinton last night and his best shot to win them over is to build upon his role as Clinton’s chief surrogate now and for the remainder of the campaign. Democratic power brokers fear that these last-ditch holdouts are marring the convention, hampering unity and their general election chances; but should they be playing to the audience inside the Wells Fargo Center - or the much more critical audience of millions tuning in?
OMNI-BUST?: Congress longs for the day it can pass all 12 appropriations bills separately – but that will not happen this year…or anytime in the near future. The Appropriations Committees in both the House and the Senate have moved all 12 spending bills out of Committee, allowing for negotiations to proceed over recess. If successful, we could look be looking at long-term funding for the government or more likely, an omnibus package – but don’t get your hopes up. Congress could instead adopt a continuing resolution (CR) as an interim measure, providing funding for areas of the government for which specific appropriations are not adopted before the new fiscal year begins, but that would keep funding at the same level as the previous fiscal year. An omnibus package is better for economy and markets given the certainty that the government will be funded for a longer period of time, we can only hope something gets done before September 30.
TRUMP’S TRUSTY THUMBS: By day, Donald Trump is a campaigning machine – raising cash and swooping into swing states like NC and PA – but by night, he’s a twitter maniac. His blood pressure must be boiling watching primetime tv this week, because on the first night of the DNC, he lobbed insult after insult at every major speaker, with just one exception - Michelle Obama. She didn’t mention him by name either, but she did criticize “the Manhattan businessman” for his rampant Twitter use. We thought the frequency of Trump’s 140 character games were going to diminish, and expected at least some sort of pivot from last week’s convention, but we were wrong.
DISSECTING THE PARTY PLATFORMS: The Republican Convention concluded last week and the Democratic Convention officially kicked off this week. We put together a comparison of each party’s platform to help you better understand the differences and similarities in the policy agendas for the coming year. You can read the comparison here.