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Monday, June 27, 2016
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Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson talks to reporters at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis on Monday. (HPI Photo by Thomas Curry)
Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson talks to reporters at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis on Monday. (HPI Photo by Thomas Curry)
Monday, June 27, 2016 1:18 PM

By THOMAS CURRY

INDIANAPOLIS - Libertarian nominee for president Gary Johnson told the nation's mayors that he is not afraid to play spoiler and embraces the opportunity to upset an already chaotic election cycle. Johnson said it's a “system that needs spoiling” and that recent polling shows the third party ticket may have a historic chance in 2016.

Speaking on the ABC/Washington Post poll released on Sunday that shows Johnson at 10%, trailing Democrat Hillary Clinton at 47% and Republican Donald Trump at 37% the former Republican New Mexico governor said, “When you do the math, 43% of Americans are declaring themselves Independents, 30% Democrat and 27% Republican. When you look at Trump's 39 points, that comes out to 13% of the electorate determining his nomination. Hillary's nomination was determined by 15% of the electorate. Where is the other 70%? Why is it that these two are proclaimed representatives of Americans when they are not?” Johnson went on further to say “many Americans are Libertarians but just don’t know it yet.”

Addressing the United States Mayor Conference in downtown Indianapolis, Johnson said cities are the “laboratories of government.” He continued saying “You guys are the front lines” and that “I will end the imperial presidency“ that he says insults cities by Air Force One and the Presidential motorcade clogging city streets for hours. He said that if he is elected, he would eliminate the income and corporate tax to make it easier for start ups in cities and around the country to grow.

The Libertarian candidate talked about the problem of “chrony capitalism” that hurts America's cities and economy. Johnson said on free trade that “The government is for sale, government favor is for sale” and that “You and I can level the playing field. We can fix the government from spending too much and becoming too big.”
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  • By BRIAN A. HOWEY
    NASHVILLE, Ind. – The official word from Gov. Mike Pence’s embattled reelection campaign whenever Donald Trump says something outrageous, like accepting “congrats” in the wake of the Orlando massacre or suggesting that President Obama has committed treason, or saying that a Hoosier with an IU law degree is really a “Mexican” is to say that he is “laser focused” on the Indiana economy and job creation, where he is having considerable success. But this laser focus was briefly obscured at the Indiana Republican Convention when in his booming voice just a few second after starting, Pence urged delegates to ensure that Indiana becomes “the first state on the board to make Donald Trump the president of the United States.” It was an emphatic endorsement. He spoke these words after conservative House Speaker Paul Ryan cited Trumps “textbook racism” on the Judge Gonzalo Curiel controversy. It came after conservative Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that Trump “doesn’t know a lot about the issues and had not displayed the requisite “seriousness of purpose” to be president. The 2012 Republican nominee, Mitt Romney warned, Republicans that a “President Trump” could normalize racism, misogyny and bigotry in the national conscience. Why would Gov. Pence attach his dingy to what appears to be the political equivalent to the RMS Titanic? He sees that Trump 53 percent Indiana primary victory last month that came despite his own endorsement of Ted Cruz.
  • By CAMERON CARTER
    INDIANAPOLIS – This may seem like incredibly poor form, but I want to thank Omar Mateen for helping to further expose the broken politics of Washington, as a renewed and overdue debate over our civil rights took place this week.  If only the deaths of 49 innocents at an Orlando night club had not had to occur for this illuminating discussion to unfold.  If having followed the news this week you do not recognize the above description, it is because a great many citizens and our elected leaders in Washington – in the Obama administration and the U.S. Senate, particularly – have failed to comprehend the true nature of the debate in which they are engaged. And, having failed to comprehend it, they have engaged in a bonfire of inanities which has spread across the news media, cable talkshow gabblers, and so-called “social” media (which once again proves itself to be downright anti-social when controversies arise).  The question is not whether we want to prevent the next terrorist attack or mass shooting. Nor is it a question of whether the event in Orlando that Mateen perpetrated was a terrorist attack or a mass shooting. The obvious, inarguable (one would hope) answers to these questions is “of course, we do” and “of course, it was.” The real question, as President Obama has put it, is what kind of country do we want to be? 
  • By JACK COLWELL
    LaPORTE – When Blair Milo, elected mayor of LaPorte at age 28, won a second term last fall, with Democrats choosing not even to oppose her, she was viewed as a potential Indiana Republican superstar, likely to run for higher office. Milo is running. For sure. But not for higher office. At least not yet. Nor is she running a political course in accord with current Hoosier GOP political wisdom. She doesn’t endorse Donald Trump. She does support a wheel tax, saying it’s vital to fix crumbling streets in her city. Milo is running. The course she ran in May was in “toughman” competition, running a half marathon, 13.1 miles, biking 56 miles and swimming 1.2 miles. “My two goals were to finish and not die,” Milo laughs. She achieved both goals. She is used to challenges – a couple of marathons and in more serious matters in five and a half years of active duty in the Navy, including stationing on a vital Iraqi oil platform protected by the Navy and being sent to a dangerous part of Pakistan in “what was not my favorite time in the Navy.”
  • BY: MARK SOUDER
    FORT WAYNE – While I am more of a beer guy, or bourbon, Donald Trump has driven me to whine. If I’m not careful, between now and the fall election I could become sort of a political alcoholic filled with constant whine, whine, whine. But the only way to avoid the addiction is to totally abstain from politics, or at least have long dry stretches of Trump withdrawal while focusing on baseball.  Some days Trump makes me angry, as do Hillary and the President, but in today’s context of everyone being angry, mine hardly reaches that threshold anymore. When I raise my voice, my face slightly reddened, and make declarations, it sounds like Trump when he’s in a good mood. Or Hillary, when she’s whispering. At least the President just smirks. To be considered angry today, you really have to haul out some big verbal guns. Or threaten to use a real gun. Speaking of liberal hysteria, they holler at Trump (correctly) for turning terrorism by an Arab American into an “I told you so,” yet every shooting becomes the same for liberals. Primarily another notch on their gun control ban advocacy belt. 
  • By RICH JAMES
    MERRILLVILLE – Political campaigns come and go, but one thing has stayed the same over nearly a decade in Northwest Indiana. Yes, Virginia, can you say Cline Avenue Bridge? And, rightly so, the local Democrats continue to turn the bridge to their political advantage. The bridge was a major link between the Chicago Skyway and Northwest Indiana,  particularly the casinos and area steel mills and other industries. The state closed the elevated bridge in 2009, citing structural deficiencies. Although former Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels said the structure would be rebuilt by the state, he quickly washed his hands of the issue. The state then contracted with a private firm to rebuild the structure, although not to its original size. United Bridge Partners has started work on an operations and maintenance building in East Chicago. Work on the bridge, however, hasn’t started and it likely won’t be completed until 2019.
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  • Clinton criticizes Trump over Brexit  in Indy

    By THOMAS CURRY

    INDIANAPOLIS - Citing her experience with foreign leaders, time in the Senate and her time doing charity work, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton attempted to win over the nation's mayors at the annual United States Mayors Conference in downtown Indianapolis on Sunday. Clinton opened her remarks to the over 200 mayors attending by speaking for the first time about the Brexit vote that has spun the international economy into chaos. Clinton called it a “reminder that what happens around the world has consequences,” pointing out that Americans lost more than $100 billion in their 401K accounts since the Brexit took place last week.  Taking a shot at presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, Clinton said, “Bombastic comments make the situation worse in tumultuous times” and added the country needs “steady leadership in troubled times.”

  • HPI Interview: Hollingsworth says voters want outsiders in DC
    By THOMAS CURRY
        
    INDIANAPOLIS – Ninth CD Republican nominee Trey Hollingsworth seemed to come out of nowhere last fall, had more than $2 million spent by him and on his behalf, and won the primary against a formidable field that included the incumbent attorney general and two state senators. HPI first caught up with Hollingsworth at the Indiana Republican Convention earlier this month and he promised an interview. On Tuesday, Hollingsworth stopped by Howey Politics Indiana’s Indianapolis office for the first in-depth interview of his political career. He believes that he has harnessed some of the same energy that has propelled presumed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and to a lesser extent, Democrat Bernie Sanders. Hoosiers are looking for new voices and players to correct what they perceive to be a broken system. We learned more about Hollingsworth’s extensive Indiana business holdings. At one point, he asked for our perspectives and advice, to which HPI responded that he might have commenced his conversation to the voters, Republican Party officials and the press by explaining his Indiana background and his family’s desire to live near Louisville.
  • HPI Analysis: As Trump implodes, 'tsunami watch' for Indiana
     By BRIAN A. HOWEY
        
    INDIANAPOLIS – This is the official posting of a tsunami watch for Indiana. With Donald Trump’s presidential campaign at best in transition and in all probability, in a mode of outright implosion, with Gov. Mike Pence locked in a dead heat along with sagging reelect and job approval numbers, and with Pence attaching his dingy to the political equivalent of the RMS Titanic, the potential for severe down-ballot trauma for Hoosier GOP nominees is heightened. If you are a nominee for the U.S. Senate, the 2nd, 8th and 9th CDs, assorted Statehouse offices, and a dozen or so Indiana House seats on competitive footing, the potential for base suppression and widespread damage exists between now and Nov. 8. Persons in these watch areas should prepare to seek shelter, stay away from windows and doors, and watch for falling debris. Unsecured folding chairs and tables, punch bowls, derby hats, emery boards and other objects have the potential to become projectiles that can inflict reputational damage and cause injuries. This is not a test.

  • As Indiana conventions end, a flurry of activity and speculation
    By BRIAN A. HOWEY

    INDIANAPOLIS - In the few short hours after the Indiana state political convention season ended early Saturday evening, there was virtually no lag time in the next sequence as the Republican Governors Association launched a second attack TV ad against Democrat John Gregg on behalf of embattled Gov. Mike Pence. It came two days after Gregg told Indiana Democratic Convention delegates that he had the ability to spend $600,000 a week in statewide TV between now and the Nov. 8 election.  And it comes as the imploding Republican presidential campaign of Donald Trump fired campaign manager Corey Lewandowski Monday morning, and hired Hoosier political operative Kevin Shaw Kellems to manage the use of surrogates.
  • Gregg issues a retort to Gov. Pence on Indiana's future
    By THOMAS CURRY

    INDIANAPOLIS - Democratic gubernatorial nominee John Gregg played off Gov. Mike Pence’s assertion that Hoosier voters faced “two futures” last weekend. Setting up his rematch with the governor, Gregg called for “responsible leadership that moves us forward.” “I like studying the past but I do not want to live there,” said Gregg told more than 2,000 delegates attending the biennial Indiana Democratic Convention late Saturday afternoon. The former House speaker called out Gov. Pence for carrying an agenda focused more on his own political gains than of the people of Indiana. “It is time for adult leadership in the Statehouse,” continued Gregg, who concluded his address saying, “As your governor I will take on the solemn job of making the future better for our kids. That is the job Mike Pence has not done. Let’s go make an Indiana we can be proud of.”

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  • Orlando Mayor Dyer warns of a 'new' dangerous world for cities
    “I struggled with whether or not to leave Orlando and come to the conference. I’m here with you because it’s clear to me that we live in a new world. A world that any one of our cities could be the site of this kind of intentional mass-casualty event. A world where each one of our cities needs to be better equipped to respond.” - Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer in a Sunday afternoon address to the U.S. Conference of Mayors' annual meeting in Indianapolis. He said relaying that news to the public was the hardest moment he faced of the entire ordeal. “I had to take a very big gulp and say it’s 50, not 20," Dyer said. "And you could hear a collective gasp from the reporters at that point."
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HPI Video Feed
INGOP's 'Coal miner' TV ad against Gregg
The Indiana Republican Party posted this TV ad on June 24 seeking to link Democrat gubernatorial nominee John Gregg to Hillary Clinton.

Clinton Addresses U.S. Mayors in Indianapolis
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton criticizes Donald Trump over his Brexit comments to the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis on Sunday.

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Trump taxes

Should Donald Trump release recent tax returns, like every major party nominee has done over the past 40 years?


 

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