WOUNDED CLARK COUNTY JUDGE PLEADS GUILTY: Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry announced that Clark County Circuit Judge Andrew Adams pleaded guilty today for his role in the May 1 altercation that occurred in a parking lot of a White Castle in downtown Indianapolis (Howey Politics Indiana). Marion County Criminal Court 18 entered the conviction to Battery Resulting in Bodily Injury (Class A Misdemeanor) for Judge Adams’ admission that he kicked Brandon Kaiser during the altercation. The Court ordered a suspended sentence of 365 days with no probation. Judge Adams is also facing action from the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications. The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended Adams. In June, Judge Adams was indicted by a Marion County Grand Jury. A separate Marion County Grand Jury indicted Brandon Kaiser and Alfredo Vazquez for their alleged roles in the altercation. The cases against Kaiser and Vazquez remain pending at this time. At the request of Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry, two Marion County Grand Juries were empaneled to hear evidence related to the May 1 altercation. Four individuals, including Judge Adams, were granted immunity to testify as witnesses before the Grand Juries since they were also treated as targets in the investigation. Case law sets out that if immunized witnesses are also targets in an investigation, the matters should be presented independently to separate grand juries. The evidence was presented to the Grand Jurors by two independent teams of deputy prosecutors.

DONATO WINS SD18 CAUCUS: Cass County Councilwoman Stacey Donato was elected by a special caucus Monday night to fill the seat left vacant by Indiana Sen. Randy Head, who resigned last month to become chief deputy prosecutor for Pulaski County (Gerber, Logansport Pharos-Tribune). The Indiana Republican Party held the caucus at the Miami County Fairgrounds to replace the District 18 seat left empty by Head. District 18 serves Miami, Cass and Fulton counties, and portions of Carroll, Kosciusko and Marshall counties. Donato faced off against five other candidates for the senate seat. All the candidates were given 3 minutes to make their case to the 82 volunteer precinct committee members that make up District 18. During her speech, Donato said she would focus on fighting substance abuse and funding related to education. Head endorsed Donato for his former senate seat, and spoke briefly to the caucus before voting started. “Stacey has the right combination of experience in business, government and the community to be a fantastic legislator that we want and we expect and that we need,” he said. “She’s not going to sit at home. She’s going to be in your counties.” By the fifth round, Donato faced off against Flora Town Councilman Jake Adams and former Miami County Sheriff Tim Miller. She ended up winning the final ballot with 42 votes.

STATE WANTS DCS SUIT DOCS SEALED: State officials are trying to seal documents in a federal class action suit alleging the Indiana Department of Child Services is failing to protect children in its care (Kelly, Fort Wayne Journal Gazette). Lawyers for Gov. Eric Holcomb and DCS Director Terry Stigdon argue that some records need to be sealed to shield the young children in the case. But the plaintiffs who filed the case say pseudonyms are already being used and sealing documents just means hiding information from the public. A brief filed Friday by two advocacy groups and an international law firm on behalf of several foster children questioned whose privacy the defendants' are actually interested in protecting. “Plaintiffs have never contended that access to the children's individually identifiable information, such as their names, addresses, or birthdates, are in the public interest. However, the details of Plaintiffs' allegations, and the children's stories as they relate to structural deficiencies in Indiana's child welfare agencies, are most certainly in the public interest,” court records said.

CONGRESSIONAL REPUBLICANS AWAIT TRUMP ON GUN REFORMS: Senate Republican leaders discussed gun legislation in an hourlong party meeting on Monday evening, including expanding background checks, according to an attendee. But no one is making a move without President Donald Trump, who senators expect will be presented options on gun legislation by White House officials later this week (Politico). "Trump himself has been nearly impossible to pin down on the issue. Top GOP leaders in the House and Senate — including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Whip John Thune, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Minority Whip Steve Scalise — will meet with Trump on Tuesday to discuss the fall agenda, according to three sources familiar with the meeting. That gives Republicans the opportunity to hear the latest from the president himself. Trump has sounded at times optimistic or noncommittal about new gun legislation. With memories of last year's government shutdown fresh in their minds after Trump rejected their spending bill, Senate Republicans have no interest in getting ahead of Trump on such a charged cultural issue. "We are very interested in knowing what his plan and proposal is and what he'd be willing to sign," Thune said, after the party leadership met on Monday. "All of our members, if this meeting [Monday] was any indication, believe that the president needs to indicate what it is he will be for."

MEIJER, ALDI MOVE AGAINST OPEN CARRY: Meijer and ALDI announced Monday that they do not want customers to openly carry firearms in their grocery stores (WTHR-TV). Meijer evaluated its policies after Walmart said last week it would stop selling handgun and short-barrel rifle ammunition and requested customers not openly carry firearms in its stores, even where state laws allow it. Walmart came to the decision on the heels of several mass shootings, including one in El Paso that occurred at a Walmart store. Twenty-two people were killed and 24 were injured in that shooting. Meijer said in a tweet "The safety of our customers and team members is our top priority, so we respectfully request that our customers do not open carry firearms at Meijer."

TRUMP APPROVAL SLIPS TO 38% IN WP/ABC POLL: President Trump is ending a tumultuous summer with his approval rating slipping back from a July high as Americans express widespread concern about the trade war with China and a majority of voters now expect a recession within the next year, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. The survey highlights how one of Trump’s central arguments for reelection — the strong U.S. economy — is beginning to show signs of potential turmoil as voters express fears that the escalating trade dispute with China will end up raising the price of goods for U.S. consumers. Trump’s approval rating among voting-age Americans stands at 38 percent, down from 44 percent in June but similar to 39 percent in April, with 56 percent now saying they disapprove of his performance in office.  Concern over the economy — and specifically Trump’s handling of trade negotiations with China — have become a drag on the president’s public standing, particularly with women. Trump’s handling of trade negotiations with China is a particularly weak spot, with 35 percent in the new poll approving of him on this issue and 56 percent disapproving. That compares with a narrower negative split of 43 percent approval to 54 percent disapproval two months ago. Trump’s overall approval rating among independents is deeply underwater, with 36 percent approving of his job performance and 58 percent disapproving.

INTERNAL TRUMP DISPUTE OVER FARM BAILOUT: Senior government officials, including some in the White House, privately expressed concern that the Trump administration’s nearly $30 billion bailout for farmers needed stronger legal backing, according to multiple people who participated in the planning (Washington Post). The bailout was created by the Trump administration as a way to try to calm outrage from farmers who complained they were caught in the middle of the White House’s trade war with China. In an attempt to pacify farmers, the Agriculture Department created an expansive new program without precedent. As part of the program, the USDA authorized $12 billion in bailout funds last year and another $16 billion this year, and Trump has said more money could be on the way. But two Agriculture Department officials involved in the bailout program told The Washington Post they were worried the funding could surpass the original intent of the New Deal-era Commodity Credit Corporation, which is being used to distribute the money. The CCC, as it is known, had previously been used only to create substantially more limited programs. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid professional repercussions.

CIA EXTRACTED KREMLIN SPY: Decades ago, the C.I.A. recruited and carefully cultivated a midlevel Russian official who began rapidly advancing through the governmental ranks. Eventually, American spies struck gold: The longtime source landed an influential position that came with access to the highest level of the Kremlin (New York Times). As American officials began to realize that Russia was trying to sabotage the 2016 presidential election, the informant became one of the C.I.A.’s most important — and highly protected — assets. But when intelligence officials revealed the severity of Russia’s election interference with unusual detail later that year, the news media picked up on details about the C.I.A.’s Kremlin sources. C.I.A. officials worried about safety made the arduous decision in late 2016 to offer to extract the source from Russia. The situation grew more tense when the informant at first refused, citing family concerns — prompting consternation at C.I.A. headquarters and sowing doubts among some American counterintelligence officials about the informant’s trustworthiness. But the C.I.A. pressed again months later after more media inquiries. This time, the informant agreed. The move brought to an end the career of one of the C.I.A.’s most important sources. It also effectively blinded American intelligence officials to the view from inside Russia as they sought clues about Kremlin interference in the 2018 midterm elections and next year’s presidential contest. The informant, according to people familiar with the matter, was outside of Mr. Putin’s inner circle, but saw him regularly and had access to high-level Kremlin decision-making — easily making the source one of the agency’s most valuable assets. The decision to extract the informant was driven “in part” because of concerns that Mr. Trump and his administration had mishandled delicate intelligence, CNN reported.

TRUMP CONTRADICTS OFFICIAL ON BAHAMA REFUGE: It's a wrenching scene that plays out every time a natural disaster strikes. Thousands of people are homeless and searching for refuge, and many of them end up on America's doorstep. The reality of the devastation Hurricane Dorian left behind when it pounded the Bahamas is becoming increasingly clear. But details of the US response to the disaster are still taking shape. US rescue teams have been searching for survivors across the islands. And many Bahamas residents have fled to the United States since the storm hit (CNN). But some Bahamians boarding a ferry boat for Florida over the weekend heard what critics called a cruel message: If you don't have a valid visa, you have to turn back. US Customs and Border Protection officials said that announcement came because the ferry's operator didn't properly coordinate the evacuation with the US and Bahamian governments. "There's some confusion there," acting CBP chief Mark Morgan said Monday. "We will accept anyone on humanitarian reasons that needs to come here. We're going to process them expeditedly." Asked outside the White House on Monday whether he was prepared to offer temporary protections to Bahamas residents, President Donald Trump said the matter was under discussion. But he stressed that anyone coming to the United States from the Bahamas needs "proper documentation." "We have to be very careful," he said.

ROSS THREATENED TO FIRE NWS OFFICIAL IN ALABAMA FLAP: The Secretary of Commerce threatened to fire top employees at the federal scientific agency responsible for weather forecasts last Friday after the agency’s Birmingham office contradicted President Trump’s claim that Hurricane Dorian might hit Alabama, according to three people familiar with the discussion (New York Times). That threat led to an unusual, unsigned statement later that Friday by the agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, disavowing the National Weather Service’s position that Alabama was not at risk. The reversal caused widespread anger within the agency and drew accusations from the scientific community that the National Weather Service, which is part of NOAA, had been bent to political purposes. NOAA’s statement on Friday is now being examined by the Commerce Department’s Office of Inspector General, according to documents reviewed by The New York Times, and employees have been asked to preserve their files. NOAA is a division of the Commerce Department.

HPI DAILY ANALYSIS: If your home has been decimated by a category 5 hurricane, and you face an existential crisis, do you think you're going to know where your passport is? The United States of America needs to step up and offer shelter to our Bahaman neighbors. - Brian A. Howey


HUPFER LAUDS DONATO: Indiana Republican Party Chairman Kyle Hupfer issued this statement following the selection of Stacey Donato to fill the vacancy in Senate District 18 created by former State Senator Randy Head's resignation (Howey Politics Indiana). "We are excited to welcome Stacey Donato to the Indiana Senate -- a new leader at the Statehouse and voice for Hoosiers across Cass, Fulton, Miami, Carroll, Kosciusko and Marshall counties. With the experience and background Stacey Donato brings, I know she will continue former Senator Head's tradition of fiscal responsibility and bold leadership on important issues impacting Hoosiers in the district."

ZODY SAYS HOLCOMB NEEDS TO CONFRONT HILL ON BMV RULING: Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody issued the following statement after Attorney General Curtis Hill delayed a rule impacting LGBT Hoosiers (Howey Politics Indiana). “By blocking a commonsense rule, Curtis Hill is using the power of his official office to advance his extreme political agenda and LGBT Hoosiers are once again the target. Governor Holcomb has said, ‘Hoosier hospitality means that all are welcomed and valued in our state’. Words aren’t enough. Holcomb needs to stand up and lead to ensure Indiana is a welcoming place for all Hoosiers. That starts with condemning Hill’s delay tactics publicly.”

TALLIAN TO ADDRESS ALLEN DEMS: The Allen County Democratic Party announced Monday that state Sen. Karen Tallian of Portage will be the keynote speaker at its annual dinner this month (Fort Wayne Journal Gazette). Tallian announced recently that she will seek the Democratic nomination for Indiana attorney general in the 2020 election. The Allen County Democratic Party's annual dinner will be at 7 p.m. Sept. 27 at Ceruti's Summit Park, 6601 Innovation Blvd., Fort Wayne.

SMITH KNOCKS ON 25,000 DOORS: On Monday the Tim Smith for Mayor Campaign reached an unprecedented accomplishment in Fort Wayne municipal politics: 25,000 doors knocked (Howey Politics Indiana). Only 57 days remain until Election Day, during which Tim and his campaign will be knocking every day, listening to voters and discussing his plans to make Fort Wayne the safest, smartest, and most prosperous city in the Midwest. After reaching this important milestone Tim Smith released the following statement “I am humbled and thankful for the tremendous grassroots support of my campaign.  Whether door knocking, talking with neighborhood associations, or meeting with small groups in peoples’ homes, I am impressed by the number of people backing my candidacy from all walks of life.  I’m also impressed by the clear majority of voters who have told me they expect more from city leadership than they’re receiving today. I will continue to run an issues-based campaign focused on listening to Fort Wayne residents.”

TERRE HAUTE MAYORAL FORUM TONIGHT: Citizens of Action is hosting a forum for Terre Haute mayoral candidates at 7 p.m. tonight at the Booker T. Washington Community Center, 1101 South 13th Street (Terre Haute Tribune-Star). Participants will include incumbent Republican Duke Bennett, Democrat Karrum Nasser and Independent Pat Goodwin. Members of the public are encouraged to attend and bring questions they have for the candidates. Questions are open to any topic but the focus of the event will be on equity, inclusion and economic development. Richard Solomon of WTHI-TV will moderate.

KEY NC CD ELECTION TONIGHT: Republican Dan Bishop and Democrat Dan McCready will finally face off in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District (North State Politics). Nearly $20 million has been spent on this race -- McCready has spent $4.7 million, Bishop has spent $1.7 million, and the NRCC and CLF have spent a combined $5.4 million. All the groups involved in this race say the same thing: Internal polling has the two candidates within a few points of each other -- all within the margin of error. President Trump carried this district by 9%, so Democrats don't have much business holding this seat. The last time a Democrat held the seat was up to 1962, when Hugh Quincy Alexander lost his re-election bid to Republican Jim Broyhill in that year's mid-term; Republicans have held the different configurations of this district since 1963.

TRUMP CAMPAIGNS FOR BISHOP: President Trump's final line delivered in Fayetteville, N.C.: "Tomorrow is your chance to send a clear message to the America-hating left."

REP. UPTON PONDERS RETIREMENT: Rep. Fred Upton had plans to crisscross more than 100 miles of his southwest Michigan district on a recent weekday, which meant “feet on the ground at 4:30 a.m.,” as he put it (Wall Street Journal). So it was still dark when the 66-year-old Republican hopped in his Jeep and headed to a live radio interview at Kalamazoo’s WRKR. Next up were visits to two local elementary schools, then another radio interview, a briefing by scientists at Western Michigan University, and a ribbon ceremony for a World War II veteran—all before noon, when Mr. Upton was scheduled to speak at a local Rotary Club. Mr. Upton is an endangered moderate in a state crucial to President Trump’s re-election hopes, and Republicans here and in Washington wonder if he could be about to join the growing ranks of House GOP retirees. Mr. Upton wasn’t acting like a politician who is ready to throw in the towel. Yet he wasn’t ruling it out either. “We’ve got a lot of time,” Mr. Upton said in an interview last Tuesday. “I like to say we’re checking all the boxes, and we’ll make a decision in a couple months.” Recent retirements and defeats have taken a toll on Republican centrists. The GOP’s center-right Main Street caucus, which Mr. Upton helps lead, was decimated in 2018, losing 18 of its members in the Democratic wave. Mr. Upton won by the smallest margin of his career last year—about 4 percentage points—and the seat would be even more competitive if he departs.

Presidential 2020

OBAMA DIPLOMATS BACKING MAYOR PETE: Pete Buttigieg has enlisted an army of elite supporters to argue that the 37-year-old mayor of a small city has what it takes to be the leader of the free world (Politico). Nearly two dozen former ambassadors who worked for President Barack Obama abroad see a commander in chief in the South Bend, Ind., mayor and are using their fundraising connections and stature in elite Democratic circles to build support for him. The campaign is currently discussing plans to deploy Buttigieg’s team of former ambassadors to woo influential undecided Democrats to his team, according to multiple people with knowledge of those discussions.

BUTTIGIEG HIRES SC DIRECTOR: Pete Buttigieg has hired a state director to lead his South Carolina operation as the South Bend, Ind., mayor ramps up his 2020 presidential campaign (Post & Courier). Jarvis Houston, who was most recently chief of staff for a New York state senator and has experience managing campaigns, will oversee Buttigieg’s South Carolina team, which has now expanded to 33 staffers on the ground, his office said. “South Carolinians understand that we are in a critical moment that demands bold, new solutions and new leadership — and that’s exactly what Pete offers,” Houston said.

SEPTENGENARIANS DOMINATE: Every public poll shows a steady and indisputable trend: The Democratic 2020 race is a three-way brawl between 70-somethings who came to fame in the U.S. Senate (Axios). In this era of change, technology and disruption, Democrats seem content with three pre-Internet era throwbacks: Bernie Sanders, 78; Joe Biden, 76; and Elizabeth Warren, 70. The Democratic nominee will run against 73-year-old President Trump. National and state polls show all three have consistent bases of political support, virtually assuring them the money and grassroots to grow or at least hold their top-tier position. For all the hype, Pete Buttigieg 37, and Kamala Harris, 54, rarely crack double digits, and sometimes sink into the low single digits. And age, of course, doesn't dictate sensibility: Warren was an early blogger, and is legendary on the selfies front. Breaking a record? Reagan was 77 when he left office. Biden turns 77 in November. Trump, at 70, was the oldest president at inauguration. (Reagan was 69.)


GOVERNOR: HOLCOMB MEETS WITH SUBARU, HONDA OFFICIALS - Gov. Eric Holcomb met with Subaru and Honda officials on his trade mission to Japan (Howey Politics Indiana). "This afternoon #INAsia, we visited @SUBARU_CORP to discuss the 30+ years of success @subaru_usa has had in Lafayette, and what the next 30+ years could become. We wanted to express our gratitude to @SUBARU_CORP for the 5,700 careers @subaru_usa is providing Hoosiers. #INAsia Indiana in Japan and Ind. Econ. Dev. Corp @subaru usa started producing vehicles in 1989 and has been growing and growing ever since! #INAsia." In another tweet after meeting with Honda officials, Holcomb said, "We’re grateful for the 2,500+ careers and continued training and career development opportunities @Honda provides in Greensburg. #INAsia."

STATEHOUSE: HILL INVESTIGATING GOOGLE - Google is being investigated by Indiana's attorney general and the AGs of 49 other states. They want to see if Google is unfairly controlling internet traffic by suppressing competition from other search engines (Davis, WIBC). “Just like individual citizens, corporations must be held accountable for following the law,” said Hill in a prepared statement.  “In this instance, we must recognize that stifling free and fair competition is an activity that causes real harm to real people.” Hill joined other attorneys general for a press conference in Washington, D.C., Monday, led by Texas Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton.

IDEM: ANOTHER U.S. STEEL OIL LEAK - U.S. Steel had yet another oil leak on Friday. An official with the northwest Indiana company says it found a “light, intermittent oil sheen” near one of its pipes that discharges into Lake Michigan waterways (Indiana Public Media). This comes just weeks after another leak from U.S. Steel and a chemical spill from ArcelorMittal that killed 3,000 fish. Residents and environmentalists are hoping this won’t become “the new normal.”  Natalie Johnson is the executive director of the environmental group Save the Dunes. She says big spills in the recent past — like U.S. Steel's spill of the cancer-causing chemical hexavalent chromium — have put people in the area on high alert. “It's very possible that there are other incidences on a much smaller scale that happen more common than what Save the Dunes or the public is really aware of,” Johnson says. Scott Lehmann is the town council president at Ogden Dunes. He says these recent oil spills have coated beaches in the area and polluted Lake Michigan.

STATEHOUSE: $3.7M GRANT FOR GERIATRICS PROGRAM - An Indiana group that trains people who work with seniors received almost $4 million in additional funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The goal is to develop a health care workforce better suited for older adults (Indiana Public Media).  In the past five years, the Indiana Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program trained about 200 clinicians and 10,000 patients, family members and caregivers. It focused on issues like dementia, falls and risky medication use among seniors. With the new grant, it will train at least as many more people at 17 community health centers in central Indiana.

EDUCATION: PURDUE ENROLLMENT GROWS - Purdue University's enrollment continues to grow as a record number of applications were sent into the Big Ten University (WLFI-TV). The number of undergraduates applying rose to more than 54,000 in 2018. That is a jump of more than 14,000 from 2014 and 6,000 from last year. As we previously reported, the 2019 class is the second largest in Purdue history and Purdue President Mitch Daniels said that was by design. The campus is trying to support more and more growth, but students said they can feel how crowded it is. "It's very congested," said Alondra Lopez. "Sometimes you don't have space to put your backpacks or when people are walking across because there are so many students they trip on your backpack or you get bumped on the head. It's ridiculous." Purdue welcomed more than 1,000 international students in the 2019 freshman class.

EDUCATION: PURDUE GLOBAL ENROLLMENT SLOW - Purdue's online option, Purdue Global, is pulling in high enrollment (WLFI-TV).  But according to Purdue President Mitch Daniels the growth is slow. He adds it is experienceing better enrollment than schools like it. Daniels said there are more than 2,000 enrolled through Purdue's West Lafayette Campus and more than 700 of those are staff members currently on track to complete their degree.

EDUCATION: IU ENROLLMENT DIPS - Indiana University says its overall enrollment has dropped slightly at its seven campuses around the state. The university’s figures show it started the fall semester with 90,754 degree-seeking students, a decline of about 0.8% from a year ago. The Herald-Times reports that IU’s main campus in Bloomington saw its enrollment drop about 0.4% to 42,760 degree-seeking students. But the Bloomington campus has about 8,300 first-year undergraduate students this fall, which is an increase of about 2% from last fall semester. IU says it set a statewide record with 22,068 degree-seeking minority students. University President Michael McRobbie says that reflected the school’s work to recruit minority students and create welcoming campuses.

EDUCATION: ROBOT DELIVERIES AT PURDUE - What looks like a hands-free camping cooler on six wheels is now making the rounds at Purdue University, delivering food and drinks to just about any location on campus.  California-based Starship Technologies has launched 30 robots at the school, the largest university campus to partner with the tech company (Inside Indiana Business). Using autonomous technology, the fleet of carriers will bring food orders from a restaurant to the customer’s doorstep. Right now, it’s only six restaurants, but the company says more retailers will be added in the coming weeks. “These robots will take Purdue’s dining program to the next level. This service adds more options and flexibility for our campus diners,” said Beth McCuskey, vice provost for student life. “Food delivery apps are becoming increasingly popular with college students.”

EDUCATION: EMBEZZLEMENT AT IU FOUNDATION - An Indiana University Foundation employee has been fired after allegedly confessing to embezzling funds. Campus police are investigating and the IU Foundation is going through an audit to determine exactly how much money was stolen (Bloomington Herald-Times). IU Foundation leadership learned of the embezzlement Aug. 21, according to an email from Matt Kavgian, spokesman. The employee, whose name has not been released to the public, was “immediately dismissed,” according to the email.

GAMING: BELL EXCITED ABOUT SPORTS WAGERING - The chief executive officer of the Casino Association of Indiana says pent up demand has helped generate “tremendous excitement” and big crowds at new sports books throughout the state. Sports betting became legal in Indiana September 1 and Matt Bell says the initial reaction from Hoosiers confirms his belief that the economic impact will be substantial (Inside Indiana Business). "I think you’ll see additional revenue of more than $50 million annually once sports wagering is fully implemented, which will include mobile wagering offerings in Indiana that are coming sooner rather than later," said Bell. Bell talked about the future of sports wagering in Indiana on this weekend’s edition of Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick. There are more than a dozen casinos and racinos in Indiana and all are ultimately expected to offer sports wagering. Betting is also available at off track betting parlors in the state.


WHITE HOUSE: TRUMP DECLARES TALIBAN TALKS 'DEAD' - President Trump declared on Monday that peace talks with the Taliban were “dead,” but signaled that he would still withdraw United States troops from America’s longest war, following the collapse this weekend of a monthslong effort to ease violence in Afghanistan (New York Times). Expressing impatience with the continued burden of keeping 14,000 troops in Afghanistan, the president said it was not the American military’s role to secure the world. “Our soldiers are incredible, but they are serving as policemen, to a large extent,” Mr. Trump said. “We would like to get out, but we will get out at the right time.”

WHITE HOUSE: PENCE DENIES NBC REPORT ON TALIBAN - Vice President Mike Pence hit back at NBC for alleging that he was overruled by President Trump in discussions over whether to host the Taliban for peace talks at Camp David (Washington Examiner). "That’s Absolutely Right Mr. President. More Fake News! The Dishonest Media never contacted our office before running with this story and if they had, we would have told them I FULLY support your decision," Pence said Monday retweeting Trump who also called the reports fake news. "A lot of Fake News is being reported that I overruled the VP and various advisers on a potential Camp David meeting with the Taliban. This Story is False! I always think it is good to meet and talk, but in this case I decided not to," Trump said on Twitter. NBC News reported Monday that national security adviser John Bolton and Pence tried to get Trump to not hold the meetings at Camp David. Trump overruled the two before canceling the talks with the Taliban altogether. A senior administration official said that Pence, 60, believed the meeting would have been disrespectful to the military who had fought against the Taliban for years.

WHITE HOUSE: TRUMP CUT DEAL FOR AF PILOTS AT HIS SCOTTISH RESORT - Back in 2014, soon after acquiring a golf resort in Scotland, Donald J. Trump entered a partnership with a struggling local airport there to increase air traffic and boost tourism in the region. The next year, as Mr. Trump began running for president, the Pentagon decided to ramp up its use of that same airport to refuel Air Force flights and gave the local airport authority the job of helping to find accommodations for flight crews who had to remain overnight. Those two separate arrangements have now intersected in ways that provide the latest evidence of how Mr. Trump's continued ownership of his business produces regular ethical questions (New York Times). Documents obtained from Scottish government agencies show that the Trump Organization, and Mr. Trump himself, played a direct role in setting up an arrangement between the Turnberry resort and officials at Glasgow Prestwick Airport. The government records, released through Scottish Freedom of Information law, show that the Trump organization, starting in 2014, entered a partnership with the airport to try to increase private and commercial air traffic to the region. As part of that arrangement, the Trump Organization worked to get Trump Turnberry added to a list of hotels that the airport would routinely send aircrews to, even though the Turnberry resort is 20 miles from the airport, farther away than many other hotels, and has higher advertised prices.

WHITE HOUSE: DAYTON MAYOR WHALEY MEETS WITH WHITE HOUSE OFFICIALS - Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley, a Democrat whose city suffered a mass shooting in August, met with White House officials, including counselor Kellyanne Conway, on Monday (Politico). That alone gave her confidence the president is still serious about doing something. “I’ve been the mayor since 2014. The president has been in since 2017, and I’ve never been invited to the White House,” Whaley said. “There’s something new in this that I was invited to the White House to discuss commonsense gun legislation.”

WHITE HOUSE: TRUMP/PENCE SCHEDULE - President Trump will have lunch with VP Mike Pence at 12:30 p.m. At 1:50 p.m., Trump will leave the White House for the Renaissance near the convention center. At 2:15 p.m., he is scheduled to address the 2019 National Historically Black Colleges and Universities Week Conference. At 3:05 p.m., he'll head back to the White House, and at 4 p.m., he will meet with Hill Republican leaders. At 5:30 p.m., the president will host a swearing-in ceremony for Kelly Craft, his U.N. ambassador.

WHITE HOUSE: BUSH43 REUNION FINDS ANTI-TRUMP SENTIMENTS - Differences over President Trump reverberated during a weekend reunion bash for George W. Bush White House alumni, exposing rifts in the network of Republican operatives and officials (Washington Examiner). Matt Schlapp, a lobbyist and enthusiastic Trump supporter who was political director in the Bush White House, had to be convinced to attend the reunion by a fellow "Bushie," often a term of scorn in the Trump White House, after he expressed fears of being confronted. Another Bush administration veteran, sometimes critical of Trump and sometimes not, was accosted at the gathering by a former colleague and accused of being too pro-Trump. Both the Never Trump faction and the pro-Trump group are outspoken, rarely hesitating to criticize each other despite their shared Bush roots. That was the case as approximately 2,500 of them met for a few days in Washington to reminisce about old times. “There’s been a lot of passion — and tension,” said Schlapp. His wife, Mercedes, also a Bush official, was a senior White House official until recently. Bush, 73, and Dick Cheney, 78, his vice president, spoke at the reunion but generally steered clear of the disagreements roiling national politics. The party was held Saturday night at The Anthem, a concert venue in Washington. Among attendees were: Peter Wehner, Bush's head of the White House Office of Strategic Initiatives, who is virulently anti-Trump; Tom Bossert, who was Trump's assistant for Homeland Security; pro-Trump Rep. Liz Cheney; anti-Trump MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace, who is no longer a Republican; and Joe Hagin, who was Bush's deputy chief of staff for operations and then held the same job under Trump. Also attending was Indiana's Pete Seat, who tweeted, "@AriFleischer &  @DanaPerino brought together members of the Press Office from 2001-09 to reconnect, reminisce & share our favorite stories from our time serving the 43rd President. No matter when we occupied spots in Upper or Lower Press, the bonds are strong & unbreakable."

JUSTICE: FED JUDGES RULES AGAINST TRUMP ASYLYM RULE - A federal judge in California on Monday reimposed a nationwide injunction against President Trump’s policy denying asylum to almost all who enter the country after passing through Mexico or a third country (Washington Post). U.S. District Judge Jon S. Tigar of Oakland said the policy could not be implemented anywhere along the southern border while a legal battle over it proceeds. The Trump administration announced on July 16 a change that denies asylum in the United States to those who pass through other countries without seeking asylum there. The Supreme Court is considering a request by the administration to allow the new restriction.

TREASURY: MNUCHIN TO TESTIFY ON FANNIE & FREDDIE - Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is scheduled to testify before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, starting at 10 a.m. EDT, about his department’s efforts to overhaul mortgage-finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (Washington Post). His testimony comes five days after the administration released a report calling for the privatization of the companies, 11 years after the government took them over through a process called conservatorship. The Treasury chief will testify alongside Mark Calabria, the head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, who will play a key role in any push to privatize the companies, and Ben Carson, the secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

BAHAMAS: DEATH TOLL CONTINUES TO RISE - In the rubble that was once the most densely populated neighborhood on Great Abaco Island, the only sound Monday morning was the groan of the newly arrived bulldozer, crushing glass and wood as it inched closer to the bodies (Washington Post). “We found five under the debris,” reported Joseph Hillhouse, an assistant fire chief from Gainesville, Fla. “Now we’re waiting for help to get them out.” It was a week after Hurricane Dorian made landfall here, and efforts to rescue survivors had given way to the slow, grim work of rooting through the wreckage for the dead.

ALASKA: TODD PALIN FILES FOR DIVORCE - Todd Palin has filed for divorce from Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska and 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate, after 31 years of marriage (CNN). In a document filed Friday in Anchorage, Alaska, Superior Court, Todd Palin cites an "incompatibility of temperament" in his marriage to Sarah Palin "such that they find it impossible to continue to live together as husband and wife." The divorce filing and court records use only initials to refer to the pair, with Todd Mitchell Palin listed as TMP and Sarah Louise Palin only identified as SLP.


CITIES: 150 GUNSHOTS PLAGUE SOUTH BEND - The fatal shooting of a 16-year-old Riley High School student was part of a violent weekend in South Bend in which an estimated 130 gun shots were either reported or detected in the city (South Bend Tribune). South Bend Police spokesman Ken Garcia said the tally came between 5 p.m. Friday and Sunday night and was based on 911 calls received, as well as ShotSpotter activations. Included were three separate incidents where more than 25 shots were reported: just after 2:20 a.m. Saturday in the 1900 block of Charles Street; about 1:15 a.m. Sunday in the 1000 block of North Brookfield Street; and just after 6 a.m. Sunday in the 2500 block of Kenwood Avenue. The Charles Street location is off South Bend Avenue, not far from the University of Notre Dame. Partly because of previous problems with gunshots, South Bend police had already deployed the “Armadillo” anti-nuisance vehicle near the Charles Street scene on Friday, before the weekend outbreak of gunfire, Garcia said.

CITIES: EVANSVILLE MOMS PRAISES WALMART, KROGER ON GUNS - The local chapter of Moms Demand Action gathered Sunday night to speak about gun safety (WFIE-TV). They also spent time writing thank you letters to certain grocery stores who are taking a stand against gun violence. “It’s a step and it’s a big step. Moms Demand Action has been working on this basically since they were founded," said local group leader Gena Garrett. “So five years now, they’ve been asking retailers to make this policy so that people can go to the grocery store without feeling like they might be in danger.” This progress comes after Walmart announced they would no longer carry handgun ammunition and asked that their customers refrain from carrying guns in their store. “Since Walmart and Kroger, all these other retailers have jumped on and said okay, we’re also going to issue the same policy,” Garrett said.

CITIES: SOLAR PROJECT BEGINS AT EVANSVILLE AIRPORT - Construction for Evansville Regional Airport’s solar canopy project started on Monday (WFIE-TV). EVV has wanted to construct a covered parking lot for years, and with the installation of solar panels on top of the canopy, it will improve their environmental footprint and enhance the passenger experience. EVV Executive Director Nate Hahn says this two for one, energy-efficient and passenger-friendly project has been in the works for more than a year. “It’s something we’ve spent a lot of time and effort on for the last year and a half in the terminal building, replacing lights and trying to reduce our energy usage, so this just seems like the fruition of that. The next big thing,” Hahn said.

COUNTIES: TIPPECANOE SHERIFF SEEKS MORE FUNDING - Tippecanoe County Sheriff Bob Goldsmith said the office is in urgent need of more funding (WLFI-TV). This comes after a public hearing about a local income tax increase for public safety. If the county approves the public safety tax increase, citizens could be looking at paying 0.18% more in taxes a year. Goldsmith said at the rate the county is growing, it has gotten harder for officers to effectively do their job. He said officers are spreading themselves thin and it could start impacting safety for everyone. “It's terrible, we're short on the road, we're short in the jail and then all that funnels into our administrative assistants. We're short there as the county grows, the calls are coming in, those come into dispatchers, we're short there,” said Goldsmith. “It would help us fit a lot of those needs.”