HOLCOMB SIGNS CONCURRENT ELECTION ORDER FOR 2ND CD: Gov. Eric J. Holcomb signed Executive Order 22-12 calling a special election in the Second Congressional District (Howey Politics Indiana). The special election will be held to fill the vacancy in the office of United States Representative for the Second Congressional District due to the death of Rep. Jackie Walorski. The special election will be held concurrently with the general election on Nov. 8, 2022.

 

YOUNG LAUDS BIDEN SIGNING OF CHIPS BILL: U.S. Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) issued the following statement after attending the White House ceremony at which President Joe Biden signed into law the China competitiveness legislation Senator Young helped author (Howey Politics Indiana): “Today, America goes on offense against the Chinese Communist Party. We have a national security imperative to ensure we don’t fall behind China in technological innovation, and getting this legislation enacted into law will help ensure America’s global leadership role in science and technology. The Chinese Communist Party actively lobbied against this legislation because they know this bill is bad for China and good for the United States. History will show that by enacting this legislation into law, we are confronting the challenges of today and building a more prosperous and secure tomorrow for all Americans.” The legislation passed the Senate on July 27 and passed the House of Representatives on July 28. Senator Young first introduced the legislation in 2020 and has been working to pass it since then.

 

INDIANA TAX REFUND CHECKS IN THE MAIL: Hoosiers who still haven’t received their $125 Automatic Taxpayer Refund can expect to see checks in a matter of weeks, state officials said (Smith, Capital Chronicle). Folks across the state should also see the $200 payment approved during the special legislative session arrive soon, too. After a paper shortage delayed the first round of checks by several weeks, all paper needed for printing has now been received, meaning checks can start going out as early as next week, said Emily Boesen, a spokesperson for the state auditor’s office. The state agency is expected to receive data from the Indiana Department of Revenue later this week, listing recipients who did not receive their payments via direct deposit. Once that data is available, checks can be printed starting on Aug. 15. There are roughly 1.7 million checks to print, Boesen said. The state aims to have all checks printed by early October. The auditor’s office has the capacity to print 50,000 of those per day. They take 24 to 48 hours to go through the mail process.

 

SOUTH BEND ABORTION CLINIC TO CLOSE: The Whole Woman’s Health Clinic in South Bend — the only one in Michiana that provides abortions — will close next month when Indiana’s new abortion ban takes effect (DiCarlo, WVPE). But until then, Midwest Advocacy Director Sharon Lau said abortion is still legal in the state. “We are going to be seeing patients from now until the last day that we’re allowed to,” she said. Lau said the South Bend clinic has seen an uptick in calls from states like Kentucky, Ohio and Texas since the overturn of Roe v. Wade earlier this summer. Over the past couple of weeks, calls from the neighboring state of Illinois have increased as well, though abortion is legal there. “Because the wait times have gone up, due to all the surrounding states having some sort of restrictions, now people are trying to come to Indiana for a shorter wait time,” Lau said. “Again, we can help them for the next month, but after that, it’s gonna start going back the other direction.”

 

BLOOMINGTON CHAMBER 'POSTPONES' CROUCH APPEARANCE: The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce postponed Tuesday’s planned private luncheon with Indiana Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch at the Graduate Hotel (Beane, Indiana Public Media). Crouch’s scheduled presentation, “Empowering Women Leaders IN Indiana,” came just days after Gov. Eric Holcomb signed into law an almost complete ban on abortions in the state. Local community leaders planned a protest outside the hotel to coincide with Crouch’s appearance, but canceled it after her event was postponed. An email from the leadership team called the appearance “a slap in the face of all Hoosier women” and called for the Chamber to rescind its invitation. The Chamber announced Monday night that it had postponed the appearance. In a Facebook post, the Chamber wrote: “In consultation with Bloomington Women in Leadership leaders, Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce President Eric Spoonmore has announced the Lieutenant Governor’s event on August 9 will be postponed to a future date to be determined.” Ron Green, director of communications for Crouch, said the lieutenant governor was informed of the postponement Monday night. “The lieutenant governor was looking forward to speaking to the Bloomington Women in Leadership when the event was rescheduled,” Green said.

 

INDIANA SCHOOLS AREN'T HIRING ADJUNCT TEACHERS: Adjunct teacher permits represent the newest pathway to working in Indiana classrooms, following their approval by the state legislature earlier this year. Yet so far, school leaders don’t seem keen on using them to hire people, even amid fears that districts are starting the academic year understaffed (Appleton, Chalkbeat). Adjunct permits require individuals to have only four years of experience in a content area and to pass a background check before they start teaching. They’re similar to recent programs in other states that have put nontraditional candidates in the classroom to grapple with shortages. Adjuncts also receive their permits directly from school districts rather than the state Department of Education, which stirred controversy during the legislative session over how local school boards would ensure consistent teacher quality. But no schools have posted adjunct-eligible jobs on the department’s new statewide jobs site since the law went into effect on July 1, said department spokesperson Holly Lawson. While posting job openings on the site is not mandatory, a presentation to the state Board of Education in June said all but one traditional public school in the state used the platform, which currently shows 1,802 open teaching positions.

 

COLT DEFENDER BUYING SUPPLIES FOR HOOSIER TEACHERS: Colts defender Yannick Ngakoue is new to the team this season and he has gone to social media to learn as much as he can about his new hometown (WRTV). Things like looking for restaurant recommendations and what to do with his free time. With one single tweet a couple of weeks ago, Ngakoue created a groundswell of support for Hoosier teachers. “Teachers are one of the biggest superheroes we have in this country,” Ngakoue said. “They got to chip into their own pocket to make sure guys coming from my similar background have food, extra things to learn and gain knowledge – so I am just really excited about it.”

 

CLARKSVILLE, RICHMOND WORKING WITH IU ON EXTREME HEAT ISSUES: The cities of Clarksville and Richmond worked with Indiana University last year to find out what parts of those communities get the hottest and who is most vulnerable to extreme heat. Now they’ve come up with plans to “beat the heat” (Thiele, Indiana Public Media). Climate change is expected to make heat waves longer and more intense. IU researchers said cooling cities down can save lives. Lucy Mellen is the heat relief coordinator for the city of Richmond. She said researchers found that the hottest parts of the city were 12 degrees hotter than the coolest ones. “You're seeing some people experience temperatures, you know, potentially in the low or high 90s and then other individuals seeing temperatures possibly in the high 70s — which is an entirely different experience," she said.

 

FBI BELIEVED CLASSIFIED DOCS WERE AT MAR-A-LAGO: Federal agents searched former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home on Monday in part because they believed additional classified information remained at the private club after the National Archives retrieved more than a dozen boxes of White House documents from the resort earlier this year, people familiar with the matter said (Wall Street Journal). The extraordinary law enforcement action came two months after Justice Department lawyers, including an official who supervises investigations involving classified information, visited the Palm Beach, Fla., residence seeking more information about potentially sensitive material that had been taken there from the White House.

 

WHY TRUMP SEARCH IS NOTHING LIKE HILLARY'S EMAILS: The Justice Department official who oversaw the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified records says there’s simply no comparing the search of Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence to the case against the former secretary of State (Politico). “People sling these cases around to suit their political agenda but every case has to stand on its own circumstances,” said David Laufman, who led the Justice Department’s counterintelligence section until 2018 and is now a partner at the firm Wiggin and Dana. Laufman has the credentials to judge the severity of these matters. In addition to the Clinton case, he managed the investigation of David Petraeus, the former general and CIA director who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for mishandling classified material. CNN reported that one of the DOJ officials involved in the Trump investigation is his immediate successor. “For the department to pursue a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago tells me that the quantum and quality of the evidence they were reciting — in a search warrant and affidavit that an FBI agent swore to — was likely so pulverizing in its force as to eviscerate any notion that the search warrant and this investigation is politically motivated,” he said. Twenty-four hours after it transpired, there remain few details about why the FBI raided Trump’s private estate beyond months-old questions about the former president’s handling of records that appear to have been relocated to Mar-a-Lago as he departed the Oval Office.

 

HPI DAILY ANALYSIS: First, Donald Trump has the ability to release the federal search warrant of Mar-a-Lago. Let’s see it. In Thursday's weekly Howey Politics Indiana, we'll take a deep dive into Indiana Senate races following the passage of SB1. Also, we'll look into what recent flooding in St. Louis and Kentucky signal for Indiana. Horse Race will explore the possible field in the 2nd CD. Plus, columns by Curt Smith, Michael Hicks and Jack Colwell. Look for it around 9 a.m. - Brian A. Howey

 

Campaigns

 

BUTTIGIEG TO ATTEND IDEA: Pete Buttigieg will attend the annual Indiana Democratic Editorial Association meeting in French Lick next week, where he announced his 2010 bid for state treasurer—and where he’ll gather with Indiana Democrats, according to an invite obtained by IMPORTANTVILLE. In an email to Indiana Democrats, Chairman Mike Schmuhl, his former campaign manager, said Buttigieg is expected to speak next Friday afternoon: Pete got his start in Hoosier Politics more than a decade ago when he and his team scattered “Meet Pete” signs around the hills leading to French Lick. We are honored he’s coming back to spend some time with good Hoosier Democrats.

 

VARE, WILBURN WOULD SETTLE FOR CURRENT ABORTION LAW: Democratic House candidate Victoria Garcia Wilburn and Senate candidate Jocelyn Vare said Tuesday they would settle for returning Indiana law to its current status, which allows abortion for any reason up to 20 weeks (WISH-TV). “Health care decisions need to be made by clients and their providers,” Wilburn said. “It is a very slippery slope when we begin to invite the government in.” The abortion ban drew very little public comment in support during the special session that ended Friday night. Supporters of abortion rights said the measure was too restrictive while anti-abortion groups said it didn’t go far enough. Democrats on Tuesday said they were confident they could use the abortion issue to break the supermajorities Republicans currently hold in both Indiana legislative chambers. They pointed to reports that an internal GOP survey found 63% of Indiana voters opposed a total abortion ban. A 2019 Ball State University survey found 48% of Hoosiers favor keeping abortion legal in all or most circumstances while just 17% favor banning it entirely. “The Republicans know the data, but as they did with permitless carry, they chose to ignore what Hoosier voters told them,” said Myla Eldridge, vice chair of the Indiana Democratic Party. “They decided to side with the extremist organizations over creating a better future for all voters. So, Democrats are asking voters to turn the tables on Republicans.”

 

SCHMUHL TELLS WOMEN TO VOTE DEMOCRAT: Indiana Democratic Party Chair Mike Schmuhl said voters have the power to inspire change if they are dissatisfied (Indiana Public Media). “Hoosier voters: if you are angry about ban, vote Democratic; if you are frustrated about the supermajority and what they’ve done, vote Democratic; if you are embarrassed every time these legislators meet, vote Democratic,” he said.

 

TRUMP WORLD PARANOIA INTENSIFIES: Trumpworld is abuzz with speculation about which close aide or aides has "flipped" and provided additional sensitive information to the FBI about what former President Trump was keeping at Mar-a-Lago, sources tell Axios. Trump's orbit is always an environment rife with mistrust and paranoia. Now, that's intensified. Monday's search revolves around the handling of government records — and whether Trump has been honest with federal officials. In a detail that seems too novelistic to be true, a focal point of the search was ... the Mar-a-Lago basement. Christina Bobb, a lawyer for Trump, told The Washington Post his lawyers held discussions with the Justice Department this spring over materials held at Mar-a-Lago. Bobb said Trump's legal team searched through two to three dozen boxes in a basement storage area, hunting for documents that could be considered presidential records, and turned over several items.

 

PENCE BLASTS FBI ACTION AT MAR-A-LAGO: Former Vice President Mike Pence tweeted: "I share the deep concern of millions of Americans over the unprecedented search of the personal residence of President Trump. No former President of the United States has ever been subject to a raid of their personal residence in American history. After years where FBI agents were found to be acting on political motivation during our administration, the appearance of continued partisanship by the Justice Department must be addressed. Yesterday's action undermines public confidence in our system of justice and Attorney General Garland must give a full accounting to the American people as to why this action was taken and he must do so immediately."

 

RSG DINES AT BEDMINSTER WITH TRUMP: As the GOP rallies around Trump, Republican Study Committee members are scheduled to dine with him tonight at his club in Bedminster, N.J., per Punchbowl’s Jake Sherman . And Trump world is watching which Republicans have leapt to his defense quickly enough (Politico Playbook). “It’s all a reminder of the state of our current politics — any allegation that Trump committed wrongdoing is treated by most Republicans as a loyalty test of the former president,” NBC’s Chuck Todd, Ben Kamisar, Bridget Bowman and Alexandra Marquez wrote this morning. “Lather, rinse, repeat.”

 

GOP RALLIES AROUND TRUMP AFTER SEARCH: For much of the year, small cracks in Donald Trump’s political support have been growing (AP). Dissatisfied Republican primary voters began to consider new presidential prospects. GOP donors grappled with damaging revelations uncovered by the Jan. 6 committee. S everal party leaders pondered challenging Trump for the party’s 2024 nomination. But after the FBI executed a search warrant at his Florida estate, the Republican Party unified swiftly behind the former president. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who likely represents Trump’s strongest potential primary challenger, described the Biden administration as a “regime” and called Monday’s Mar-a-Lago search for improperly taken classified documents “another escalation in the weaponization of federal agencies against the Regime’s political opponents.”

 

INDEMS SITE ARP FUNDINGS: The Indiana Democratic Party celebrated the brighter future the American Rescue Plan is *STILL* creating for Northeast Indiana. Thanks to the state’s READI program - which is fully-funded by the Rescue Plan - Fort Wayne’s airport will see updates to its Gateway West terminal, housing and apartment developments will be built in Wabash and Huntington, and a new manufacturing training lab will be available in Kendalville (Howey Politics Indiana). These investments will deliver a brighter future for Hoosiers, and it was Indiana Democrats who got it done. In contrast, the Indiana Republican Party - including Jim Banks and Todd Young - said “NO” to this brighter future. Indiana GOP Chairman Kyle Hupfer called this project “socialism” – claiming the Republicans’ opposition was a “great campaign to run on”. The Indiana GOP’s opposition to the kitchen-table issues is another reminder they have no plan for Indiana’s future – just abiding by an extremist agenda, like making abortion access against the law.

 

Polls

 

MONMOUTH FINDS JAN. 6 TESTIMONY HASN'T MOVED NEEDLE ON TRUMP: The House January 6th Committee has tried to make the case that former President Donald Trump bears direct responsibility for what happened at the U.S. Capitol last year. The latest Monmouth University Poll, though, suggests it hasn’t moved the needle with the American public. In general, public opinion stands pretty much the same as it was before recent headline-grabbing testimony of former presidential aides during the last three public hearings. This is true of both Trump’s culpability in the attack on the Capitol and claims of election fraud. In fact, Trump’s favorability rating is nearly identical to where it stood immediately after the 2020 election, and 4 in 10 Americans would lean toward backing a comeback bid in 2024. Currently, 38% of the public thinks Trump is directly responsible for what happened on Jan. 6th.  In late June, right before Cassidy Hutchinson’s appearance with the House committee, a similar 42% said Trump is directly responsible. Another 26% say Trump is not directly responsible but he encouraged those involved and 32% say Trump did nothing wrong regarding Jan. 6th. Those results were 25% and 30%, respectively, in June. Just 5% of Republicans say Trump is directly responsible and 23% say he encouraged those involved.

 

GOP CD POLLING IMPROVES: A round of new internal polling is giving the GOP fresh optimism that the House battleground map is stretching even more favorably in their direction (Politico). Four surveys conducted in late July reveal close races in open seats in Oregon, Colorado and California that President Joe Biden carried by between 11 and 15 points in 2020. Taken all together, GOP operatives view the data as a sign that Biden’s sinking approval numbers could drag Democratic candidates down enough to bring deep blue turf into reach. The voter registration and partisan lean of the districts all strongly favor Democrats, and it will be a heavy lift for Republicans to flip any of these seats. Moreover, the only polling available in the districts are internal Republican figures, which can sometimes be rosier than reality for the party.

 

State

 

GOVERNOR: HOLCOMB APPOINTS HAMILTON COUNTY JUDGE – Gov. Eric J. Holcomb today announced Stephenie K. Gookins as his appointment to the Hamilton County Superior Court. Ms. Gookins succeeds Judge Gail Bardach who retired July 1, 2022 (Howey Politics Indiana). Ms. Gookins currently is a partner in the law firm of Terry & Gookins and has been in private practice in Hamilton County since 2000. Additionally, she has served as a public defender in various Hamilton County courts for the past 21 years. Ms. Gookins received a bachelor of science from Indiana University and a law degree from the Indiana University McKinney School of Law. Ms. Gookins will be sworn in as the Judge of the Hamilton County Superior Court on a date to be determined.

 

GOVERNOR: CROUCH LAUDS RED GOLD - The Indiana State Department of Agriculture and Red Gold recently announced the winners of the 2022 Red Gold Stewardship award. Nick Totzke Farms of Stevensville, Mich., was selected as the first-place winner, and Wischmeyer Farms LLC of Ottawa, Ohio received second place (Howey Politics Indiana). “This award is a wonderful way to recognize producers for the conservation efforts they are implementing on their farms,” said Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch. “The State of Indiana is so fortunate that Red Gold is rooted here in the Hoosier State. I commend each of Red Gold’s tomato growers for their efforts in producing exceptional tomatoes while also advancing soil conservation efforts both here in Indiana and across the Midwest.”

 

DNR: WEBSITE FOR LAKE MICHIGAN COASTAL COMMUNITIES - A new online tool now available on the Indiana DNR’s website will provide Indiana’s Lake Michigan coastal communities with a one-stop shop for information about coastal resources (Howey Politics Indiana). Called the Indiana Coastal Atlas, and available at on.IN.gov/coastal-atlas, the website presents information about the coastal program area using maps, pictures, and informational text. The Indiana Coastal Atlas was developed by the Indiana DNR’s Lake Michigan Coastal Program (LMCP), in partnership with the Indiana Geographic Information Office (IGIO). The project was funded in part by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Office of Coastal Management. The LMCP (on IN.gov/lakemichigancoastalprogram) supports coordination and partnerships among local, state, and federal agencies and local organizations for the protection and sustainable use of natural and cultural resources in the Lake Michigan region.

 

HEALTH: KIDS RANK 28TH IN WELL-BEING - A family and children advocacy group ranked Indiana as the 28th best state for child well-being, a slight improvement from last year’s ranking of 29th (Capital Chronicle). The Annie E. Casey Foundation released its annual KIDS COUNT Data Book, which analyzes 16 indicators across four categories — economic well-being, education, health and family/ community factors — to rate each state’s overall environment for child well-being. Indiana’s ranking lags behind Illinois, which ranked 23rd, but ahead of other neighboring states, including Ohio (31st), Michigan (32nd) and Kentucky (37th).

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL: ROKITA LOBBYIST REGISTERED WITH INDY - A Hoosiers Against Common Core co-founder turned policy consultant and state contractor mistakenly registered as a lobbyist for the city of Indianapolis rather than the state of Indiana, Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office has confirmed (Capital Chronicle). Erin Tuttle formed Tuttle Consulting, LLC, on August 16, 2021, according to Indiana Secretary of State records. Just one week later, on August 23, Tuttle and Chief Administrative Officer Larry Hopkins signed a two-year, maximum $200,000 contract for research, analysis and communications help for Rokita’s office. The $8,333-a-month contract went into effect August 30 of that year. Among Tuttle’s listed-out duties: “Contractor shall interact and communicate with legislators.” In a statement to the Capital Chronicle, Hopkins said Rokita’s office requested that Tuttle register as a lobbyist, but that she did so with the wrong entity — Indianapolis’ Department of Business and Neighborhood Services. “Out of an abundance of caution, we asked [Tuttle] to complete the necessary registrations that are required,” Hopkins said in a statement Friday. “But this week, it was determined that she had inadvertently registered with the City of Indianapolis lobby commission. That oversight is being corrected and all appropriate filings relating to her and this office are being completed with the Indiana Lobby Registration Commission.”

 

PURDUE: TRUSTEES OK UPGRADES FOR PURDUE NW - The Purdue University Board of Trustees approved a $12 million chiller plant upgrade and chilled water line replacement at Purdue Northwest during its Friday meeting in Fort Wayne (NWI Times). The project calls for the replacement of the existing cooling tower and an additional chiller for increased capacity on the Westville campus and replacement of the existing chilled water main on the Hammond campus. The university will include the project in its 2023-25 state legislative capital request. Pending funding and other necessary approvals, construction could begin in spring 2024 with completion in spring 2025, according to the university.

 

Congress

 

FUNERAL PLANS FOR REP. WALORSKI, STAFFERS: During this most difficult time, the families and loved ones are grateful for the outreach and support they have received from so many of you in recognition of our beloved Congresswoman Jackie Walorski, Emma Thomson and Zachery Potts.

 

REP. JACKIE WALORSKI: Wednesday, August 10th – Visitation Time: 12:00 PM – 7:00 PM. Location: Granger Community Church (630 E University Drive, Granger, IN 46530). Thursday, August 11th – Memorial Service Time: 11:00 AM. Location: Granger Community Church (630 E University Drive, Granger, IN 46530). Graveside services and burial will follow at Southlawn Cemetery (61300 US Highway 31, South Bend, IN 46614). Contributions in memory of Rep. Jackie Walorski may be donated to any of the following: Jackie and Dean’s not-for-profit ministry (501c3): Impact International, Inc. Please mail contributions to Palmer Funeral Home (3718 S. Michigan Street, South Bend, IN 46614); Tunnels 2 Towers Foundation; RETA of Elkhart County.

Online condolences may be offered to Jackie’s family at www.palmerfuneralhomes.com.

 

EMMA THOMSON: Tuesday, August 9th – Visitation Time: 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM. Location: Westmont Presbyterian Church (601 Luzerne Street, Johnstown, PA 15905). Wednesday, August 10th – Memorial Service Time: 11:00 AM. Location: Westmont Presbyterian Church (601 Luzerne Street, Johnstown, PA 15905). Contributions In lieu of flowers: The family welcomes memorial contributions to the Emma Thomson Political Science Scholarship started by the John P. Murtha Foundation at the Community Foundation for the Alleghenies, 216 Franklin Street, Suite 400, Johnstown, PA 15901, or to the Capitol Hill Baptist Church, 525 A St NE, Washington, DC 20002. Online condolences may be posted to www.wharrisfuneralhome.com. To stream Funeral Service go to Westmont Presbyterian Church website.

 

ZACHERY POTTS: Saturday, August 13th – Visitation Time: 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM. Location: Calvary Tabernacle (606 N Elm Street, Three Oaks, MI 49128). Saturday, August 13th – Memorial Service Time: 1:00 PM. Location: Calvary Tabernacle (606 N Elm Street, Three Oaks, MI 49128). Contributions In lieu of flowers. The family prefers donations to be made in honor of Zach to Calvary Tabernacle (https://calvary4christ.com/donate) or to the St. Joseph County GOP (https://www.gopsjc.com/contribute). Online condolences may be posted to https://www.hovenfunerals.com.

 

DELEGATION RESOLUTION FOR REP. WALORSKI: The Indiana House Congressional Delegation introduced a bipartisan resolution honoring the life and legacy of Representative Jackie Walorski (R-IN-02) who tragically died in a car accident on August 3, 2022 alongside her two staffers, Emma Thomson and Zachery Potts. Indiana Senators Todd Young and Mike Braun introduced an identical resolution that passed by unanimous consent on August 6, 2022 (Howey Politics Indiana).  “Rep. Jackie Walorski served the state of Indiana valiantly, fighting each day for the people of Indiana’s 2nd Congressional District. Today, I am proud to lead the Indiana House Delegation in introducing a resolution to honor her life and legacy of service to the state of Indiana,” said Dr. Bucshon. "Today, I join our Indiana Delegation in honoring one of our own. Hoosiers mourn the loss of a leader known for her kindness, dedicated public service and strong work ethic. We also recognize the service of her two dedicated staffers, Emma Thomson and Zach Potts, who perished in the car accident with Jackie. We stand together to celebrate their generous spirits and their lives of public service," said Rep. Carson.

 

PELOSI SAYS TAIWAN TRIP WAS 'WORTH IT': House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday defended her decision to visit Taiwan despite an aggressive response from China that has included live-fire military exercises in the Taiwan Strait (NBC News). "Yes, it was worth it," she said in her first interview since returning from Asia last week on NBC's "TODAY" show. "And what the Chinese are doing is what they usually do." Pelosi, a California Democrat, said she had received "overwhelming bipartisan support" for her historic visit and reiterated that "China will not be allowed to isolate Taiwan." She also questioned why her trip has received so much attention, while a group of senators traveled to Taiwan several months earlier and it had no impact. "Did anybody make a fuss?" she asked.

 

HOUSE COMMITTEE TO GET TRUMP TAX RETURNS: A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that the House Ways and Means Committee can obtain Donald Trump's tax returns in the latest blow to the former president's effort to shield his finances from Democratic lawmakers (ABC News). In the opinion for the three-judge panel, Circuit Judge David Sentelle, a Ronald Reagan appointee, wrote that the committee's investigation served a valid legislative purpose and that the 2019 request for Trump's records was not a retaliatory move in violation of his First Amendment rights. "The need for the Trump Parties' information to inform potential legislation overrides the burden to the Executive Branch largely because that burden is so tenuous," Sentelle wrote.

 

THE HOUSE is out. The Rules Committee will meet at 2 p.m. to take up the Inflation Reduction Act.

 

THE SENATE is out.

 

General Assembly

 

LILLY CONTRIBUTED TO LAWMAKERS WHO VOTED FOR SB1: As Eli Lilly and Co. condemns Indiana’s near-total ban on abortion, I-Team 8 has discovered the pharmaceutical giant’s political action committee has donated tens of thousands of dollars to lawmakers and other state leaders who supported the law (WISH-TV). By Saturday morning, Lilly had issued a statement criticizing state leaders, saying, “Indiana has opted to quickly adopt one of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws in the United States.” I-Team 8 reviewed donations to state office candidates since Jan. 1, 2019. I-Team 8 found that, in that time, LillyPAC donated $87,500 to state lawmakers who cast votes on the final version of Senate Bill 1 (Special Session). More than $50,000 of those donations went to 16 state lawmakers, all Republicans, who voted for the abortion ban in the House and Senate. Included in those donations: $17,000 to House Speaker Todd Huston, a Republican from Fishers, and $15,000 to Senate President Pro Tem Rodric Bray, a Republican from Martinsville. They led the House and Senate through the special session debates. “Voters have an opportunity to vote, and if they’re displeased they’ll have that opportunity both in November and in future years,” Huston said after Friday’s vote. “You come down here and you make the best decisions you believe for public policy.” LillyPAC also donated $37,000 to 20 state lawmakers who voted against the abortion ban: 15 Democrats and five Republicans.

 

Nation

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN SIGNS CHIPS BILL - President Joe Biden signed the CHIPS and Science Act into law this morning. Fighting off a lingering cough, the president touted the law’s impact on creating jobs and inspiring a new generation of innovation (Politico Playbook). Taking a victory lap after a string of legislative victories, Biden said Washington had met the moment: “a moment when we bet on ourselves, believed in ourselves and recaptured the story, the spirit and the soul of this nation.” Here too, Democratic leaders lauded domestic semiconductor chips manufacturing as proof of concept for democracy working. “We will show that democracy will always be the best system to govern in a tumultuous world,” Senate Majority Leader CHUCK SCHUMER declared. “We are showing the world that America can get things done in a bipartisan way when it manners,” said Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo.

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN WELCOMES FINLAND, SWEDEN TO NATO - President Biden formally welcomed Finland and Sweden joining the NATO alliance Tuesday as he signed the instruments of ratification that delivered the U.S.'s formal backing of the Nordic nations entering the mutual defense pact, part of a reshaping of the European security posture after Russia's invasion of Ukraine (CBS News). "In seeking to join NATO, Finland and Sweden are making a sacred commitment that an attack against one is an attack against all," Mr. Biden said at the signing as he called the partnership the "indispensable alliance." The U.S. became the 23rd ally to approve NATO membership for the two countries. The president said he spoke with the heads of both nations before signing the ratification and urged the remaining NATO members to finish their own ratification process "as quickly as possible."

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT MAR-A-LAGO SEARCH - President Biden was not aware the FBI would be conducting a search of former President Donald Trump's South Florida residence of Mar-a-Lago on Monday and learned about the events through news reports, the White House said (CBS News). "We learned about this, the president learned about this, just like you all did, through the public reports," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, told reporters Tuesday. "And we learned about this just like the American people did." Asked whether the White House was aware of the search warrant or whether Mr. Biden has been briefed in the aftermath of the search, Jean-Pierre said he was not.

 

WHITE HOUSE: BIDEN SCHEDULE - President Biden's schedule - 9 a.m.: The president will receive the President’s Daily Brief. 10 a.m.: Biden will deliver remarks and sign the PACT Act, with Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, VA Secretary Denis McDonough and DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas in attendance. 12:30 p.m.: The president and first lady Jill Biden will depart the White House en route to Charleston, S.C., where they are scheduled to arrive at 2:30 p.m. VP Harris: 9:05 a.m.: The VP will depart D.C. en route to Las Vegas. 2:25 p.m.: Harris will deliver remarks at the United Steelworkers Constitutional Convention. 4:15 p.m.: Harris will hold a roundtable discussion with Nevada state legislators to discuss reproductive health care. 7:15 p.m.: Harris will depart Las Vegas en route to San Francisco.

 

STATE: CHINA SAYS IT WANTS TO ANNEX TAIWAN - China on Wednesday reaffirmed its threat to use military force to bring self-governing Taiwan under its control, amid threatening Chinese military exercises that have raised tensions between the sides to their highest level in years (AP). The statement issued by the Cabinet’s Taiwan Affairs Office and its news department followed almost a week of missile firings and incursions into Taiwanese waters and airspace by Chinese warships and air force planes. The actions have disrupted flights and shipping in a region crucial to global supply chains, prompting strong condemnation from the U.S., Japan and others. An English-language version of the Chinese statement said Beijing would “work with the greatest sincerity and exert our utmost efforts to achieve peaceful reunification.”

 

FBI: CONFISCATES REP. PERRY'S PHONE - Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) said on Tuesday that the FBI has confiscated his cellphone, and blasted the agency for the timing of the seizure just one day after Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home was searched. Perry told Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser that “while traveling with his family earlier in the day, he was approached by three FBI agents who handed him a warrant and requested that he turn over his cellphone.”

 

MEDIA: ESPN OUT OF BIG 10 TV RIGHTS - The Big Ten’s next round of media rights contracts will not include a deal with ESPN (AP). Two people familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the Big Ten was looking for a seven-year deal worth $380 million per year from ESPN, and the network declined. The agreement would not have given ESPN the ability to have first choice of Big Ten games in a given week at any point. The Big Ten’s other television contracts that will go into effect in 2023 are still being finalized, but ESPN and its parent network ABC will no longer be conference partners, the people confirmed.

 

WISCONSIN: TRUMP BACKED GOV CANDIDATE WINS - Republican businessman Tim Michels has won the Wisconsin GOP gubernatorial primary, setting up one of the most competitive governor races of the year and capping off another primary proxy battle between former President Donald Trump and forces including former Vice President Mike Pence (Politico). The primary between Trump-endorsed Michels and former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, who has the support of both Pence and former Gov. Scott Walker, was just the latest clash between Trump and in-state GOP power networks. Michels will face Democratic Gov. Tony Evers in November, in what is expected to be a highly competitive governor race in the battleground state. The Wisconsin gubernatorial primary was the headline election across four states Tuesday. But another blockbuster popped up in Minnesota, where Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar squeaked by a tight primary in her Minneapolis-based district.

 

WASHINGTON: REP. BEUTLER DEFEATED - GOP Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler has lost her bid for reelection in a primary in Washington state, the latest blow for the group of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach then-President Donald Trump early last year (Politico). Herrera Beutler conceded Tuesday that she would fail to finish in the top two of the all-party primary in her state’s 3rd Congressional District. Instead, Trump-endorsed Joe Kent and Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez will face off in November. Kent attended the “Justice for J6” rally in Washington, D.C., in support of Jan. 6 rioters. Herrera Beutler also faced competition from conservative Heidi St. John, which threatened to split the anti-incumbent vote in a way that helped Herrera Beutler. But Kent finished narrowly ahead of her anyway.

 

NEW YORK: TRUMP TO TESTIFY TODAY - Former President Trump will be questioned under oath today in the New York attorney general's civil investigation into his dealings as a real estate mogul, he confirmed in a post on his Truth Social account. Trump's testimony comes amid a flurry of legal activity surrounding him, and two days after FBI agents searched Mar-a-Lago as part of an unrelated federal probe into whether he took classified records when he left the White House, AP reports.

 

NEW MEXICO: SUSPECT DETAINED IN KILLINGS OF 4 MUSLIM MEN - The “primary suspect” in the killings of four Muslim men in Albuquerque has been detained after authorities located the vehicle believed to have been involved in the attacks, Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina said in a tweet Tuesday afternoon (CNN). “We tracked down the vehicle believed to be involved in a recent murder of a Muslim man in Albuquerque,” he wrote. “The driver was detained and he is our primary suspect for the murders. We will update the media later this afternoon.”

 

MLB: WHITE SOX SPLIT WITH KC -  Lenyn Sosa hit his first major league home run and Yoan Moncada also connected as the Chicago White Sox, minus injured All-Star shortstop Tim Anderson, beat the Kansas City Royals 3-2 Tuesday night to split a doubleheader (ESPN). The Royals won the first game 4-2. Vinnie Pasquantino homered in both games for Kansas City. Anderson is expected to miss six weeks with a tear in the middle finger of his left hand. He was put on the 10-day injured list between games of the twinbill. Anderson was injured on a check swing during his last at-bat on Saturday night at Texas. He will have surgery on Thursday in Chicago. The 29-year-old Anderson is hitting .301 for the playoff-contending White Sox. He missed the opener while finishing up a two-game suspension for making contact with an umpire.

 

MLB: METS DOWN REDS 6-2 -  Francisco Lindor and Jeff McNeil both homered and drove in two runs, leading Carlos Carrasco and the streaking New York Mets past the Cincinnati Reds 6-2 on Tuesday night (ESPN). Carrasco (13-4) pitched into the seventh inning and struck out nine to win his fifth straight decision and tie for the National League lead in wins. New York's rotation has a 2.78 ERA in eight starts since Jacob deGrom returned — a stretch that includes Taijuan Walker giving up eight runs in one-plus inning last Friday.

 

MLB: NATIONALS TOP CUBS 6-5 - Joey Meneses hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning, Keibert Ruiz went deep twice and the Washington Nationals regrouped after blowing a three-run lead, beating the Chicago Cubs 6-5 Tuesday night to snap a six-game losing streak (ESPN). The Nationals were rolling along with a 4-1 lead, thanks to Ruiz’s solo drive in the second and three-run shot in the fourth against Marcus Stroman. It was the first career multi-homer game for the 24-year-old Venezuelan.

 

Local

 

EVANSVILLE: PARENTS STILL STRUGGLING TO FIND FORMULA - Parents are still struggling to find baby formula seven months after Abbott Nutrition recalled their formula (WFIE-TV). According to a report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Abbott, Reckitt Mead Johnson, Nestle and Perrigo control 90% of the market. The United States relies on those manufacturers to provide the baby formula supply. Three of those four (Abbott, Reckitt Mead Johnson and Nestle) also have WIC contracts with different states, which since the 1980′s, have been modified to support a competitive bidding format. Abbott holds the most contracts at 35, while Reckitt Mead Johnson and Nestle account for the remaining state contracts. WIC operates within an inflexible, $4 billion market which crashed once Abbott recalled their products in February. One Tri-State mom expressed her concern saying some parents worry about the shortage daily. “There are people who are on specific brands of formula that aren’t on the shelves,” said a Tri-State mother, Emily Opell. “I think those are the people that are worried daily.”

 

SOUTH BEND: MUELLER ANNOUNCES FREE WI-FI - South Bend’s Mayor, James Mueller gathered with other leaders in the city and announced the expansion of the South Bend Open Wi-Fi Network (WNDU-TV). “It’s critical that we make sure that all of our residents have that access,” said Mayor Mueller. Held at Fire Station 7 in South Bend, the press conference allowed leaders to speak and emphasize the importance of accessibility to the internet. “When we were in the pandemic, we learned that it is especially true that you need connectivity to the internet to get ahead in a 21st century economy,” Mayor Mueller said.

 

FORT WAYNE: COUNCIL REVOKES TAX ABATEMENT - One local company will have to start paying full real property taxes after Fort Wayne City Council members revoked a tax abatement Tuesday (Filchak, Fort Wayne Journal Gazette). City Council members heard from five local business owners who vied for their tax phase-in agreements to stay intact another year. All of the requests were approved by members – except for one. Annually, City Council members review documentation submitted by local companies with active tax abatements, which phase in property taxes for up to 10 years. Companies are required to submit annual paperwork on time and maintain 75% of the investment they promised in exchange for the abatement to stay compliant. Conestoga LLC’s 10-year tax abatement was cut two years short Tuesday. Carmen Young, economic development specialist, said the company has previously been out of compliance multiple times.

 

INDIANAPOLIS: HOGSETT ANNOUNCES NEW PROJECTS - Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett joined the Indianapolis Department of Public Works today, to highlight ongoing construction on projects included in the second phase of his Circle City Forward initiative. Mayor Hogsett and City leadership also reviewed future plans for investments in transportation infrastructure, as outlined at last night’s introduction of the City’s 2023 annual budget (Howey Politics Indiana). Reconstruction work began today along a 3.8-lane-mile, residential segment of Heartland Boulevard in the far southwest corner of the city included as a part of this initiative. Circle City Forward – Phase 2 corresponds to $25 million originally allocated by Mayor Hogsett in 2021 for the design and construction of curb-to-curb pavement rehabilitation work along residential streets segments identified by their pavement deterioration and in coordination with the City-County Council. Nearly 20 residential street segments identified and funded by this program are now under construction or complete. “Due to a limited amount of funding, residential roadways have, for decades, taken a backseat to the repair and rehab of Marion County’s main thoroughfares,” said Mayor Hogsett. “That is why I proposed to the City-County Council $40 million in new money, for Circle City Forward Phases 5 and 6. That includes another $25 million for residential roadways, and an additional $15 million to continue addressing busy thoroughfares.”

 

EVANSVILLE: FORMER PARKS DIRECTOR ORDERED BY REPAY $491K — Former Evansville Parks and Recreation Executive Director Brian Holtz did his job the way the city wanted him to (Loesch, Evansville Courier & Press). That was his official response in an audit the Indiana State Board of Accounts released Monday afternoon that stated Holtz should reimburse the city $491,706 in connection to alleged unauthorized purchases and diverted funds. The audit also states Holtz should pay the state $83,835 for the cost of the special investigation. Mayor Lloyd Winnecke's spokesperson Noah Stubbs referred all questions to the state board of accounts. The probe started in July 2021 after Holtz resigned. Mayor Lloyd Winnecke said at the time the director quit amid an Evansville Police Department investigation into seven department invoices the city called "out of the ordinary."

 

WESTFIELD: CITY ADVOCATE DIES IN PARIS — An early intervention advocate with the Westfield Youth Assistance program died Tuesday while on a family vacation in Paris, the city government has announced. Christine Brown was “a passionate advocate for children and teenagers facing challenging life circumstances,” said a news release from the city government (WISH-TV). According to its website, the Hamilton County Youth Assistance program was developed in 2009 as a pilot program in Westfield. The goal was help ages 3-17 who are facing challenging life circumstances. The program later expanded to Carmel, Fishers and Sheridan with the help of judges in the Hamilton County court system. Brown suffered a medical emergency on Sunday while with her husband, Andy, and their two sons, Ethan and Adam. She was rushed to a local hospital and died two days later with her family by her side.

 

DELAWARE COUNTY: CARROLL NEW GOP CHAIR - Delaware County Republicans chose County Treasurer Ed Carroll to serve as the local party's chairman at a caucus of party precinct officials Monday night (Penticuff, Muncie Star Press). Carroll replaces Victor Whitehead as county chairman. Whitehead resigned July 15 after ongoing conflicts with some fellow Republicans during his tenure. The current county treasurer, who is running unopposed for county auditor this fall, said he would work to bring the party together and work at "getting Republicans elected."

 

LAKE COUNTY: JAIL PAY INCREASED -  Lake County is boosting pay for its correctional officers in the hopes of filling about 50 vacant positions (Carden, NWI Times). The new collective bargaining agreement between county government and the Lake County Correctional Officers Association, Local 11, hikes starting pay for probationary officers to $43,412 a year from the current base of $40,572 — a 7% increase, retroactive to Jan. 1, 2022. The contract provides an identical 7% pay hike for all represented positions, making correctional officer pay now start at $48,270 annually, correctional sergeant at $54,638, correctional lieutenant at $57,213, deputy warden at $59,397 and assistant warden at $62,001.

 

FLOYD COUNTY: INDOT TO ADD LANES TO I-64, I-265 — Plans are in motion to make Interstate 64 and parts of Interstate 265 look different in the future (News & Tribune). More lanes, and reconfigured exits, are all part of Improve 64, a project announced Tuesday by the Indiana Department of Transportation. The goal is to make the road safer because there’s more traffic along the corridor as development continues to increase in the area. Although construction isn’t planned to start until the end of 2024, a public information meeting is scheduled Aug. 17 at Scribner Middle School, 910 Old Vincennes Road., in New Albany. Doors open at 6 p.m. and a presentation is at 6:30 p.m. “The project team will share a variety of information at next week’s public information meeting, including the latest project updates, an overview of the project, current schedule, and maintenance of traffic (MOT) information,” said INDOT Strategic Communications Director Natalie Garrett. “Display boards will be available for viewing and team members will be present to answer questions. A recording of the presentation will also be posted to the website following the meeting.” Construction is anticipated to last two years.