Opinion: Charlotte Gambles on the Convention Las Vegas Didn’t Want

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Vi Lyles, the Democratic mayor of the largest city in North Carolina, said championing a bid to host the 2020 Republican National Convention was likely “the most difficult decision of my career.”

As word spread this week that Republicans have chosen Charlotte over other candidates, with a formal announcement due Friday, it’s almost certain the event will be one of the city’s biggest tests.

President Trump’s Walk-back

CNN – Donald Trump did something he rarely does — admit a mistake. The President has been taking a pounding from both sides of the political aisle over his comments during the Helsinki, Finland, summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. So Trump tried some cleanup at the White House, now saying he misspoke when he said, “I don’t see any reason why it would be” Russia that interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

Reading prepared remarks to reporters in the Cabinet Room, Trump said, “The sentence should have been: ‘I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia.” He also said he accepted the US intelligence community’s conclusion that the Russians meddled in the election, something he wouldn’t do while standing right next to Putin on Monday. But even this came with a caveat from Trump: “It could be other people also.”

Public Hearing Ends In 6-5 Vote to Accept Contracts for 2020 RNC

“It’s not a convention like any other because Donald Trump is not a president like any other,” says WCCB Charlotte Political Contributor Mary C. Curtis.

Opinion: Dems to African-American Women: This Time We Mean It

So why was Tom Perez, chair of the Democratic National Committee, making an appearance at this year’s Essence Festival in New Orleans, an event known for its high-powered mix of music, culture and empowerment, geared to engage black women globally? Did he see and enjoy “Girls Trip,” the 2017 mega-hit about the reunion of four black female buddies, set against the backdrop of the festival, and decide to get in on the fun, maybe take in a Janet Jackson concert?

Or was he connecting with his party’s most loyal base, which has carried the electoral load for years, and has also expressed dissatisfaction when that contribution was downplayed or overlooked?

A Contentious Fight over a Supreme Court Vacancy

If you thought it was going to be a slow summer in Washington, think again. When Justice Anthony Kennedy resigned, it meant the justice who was most considered a swing and unpredictable voter could be replaced with someone who leaned even more to the right. Democrats, who saw Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stall President Obama’s choice, Merrick Garland, want to delay President Trump’s pick (the second vacancy he has filled) until after the midterms.

A simple majority vote is all that is needed in the Senate. A key to activity from the both parties could hinge on the 1973 landmark Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion, and whether its fate hangs in the court’s balance.

Opinion: Supreme Court Resurrects the ‘Purge,’ and McConnell Saw It Coming

It was a brilliant and, opponents would say, devious move by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell: Stall, obstruct and block President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court replacement for the late Antonin Scalia.

That pick, Judge Merrick Garland, once a thoroughly acceptable and moderate choice to many Republicans, never had a chance in a ramped-up partisan atmosphere. Instead, the next president, Donald Trump, appointed conservative Neil Gorsuch, with immediate and long-lasting repercussions, this week reaching into the voting booth.

By a 5-4 vote in Husted v. A. Philip Randolph Institute, the conservatives on the court reaffirmed an Ohio law an appeals court had rejected as being a violation of the National Voter Registration Act, which says states cannot purge voters for failing to vote but can figure out how to remove those who have moved or died from the list. The state — a crucial battleground — has a particularly stringent test, using failure to vote in a single federal election cycle as the trigger to start the process.

Singapore Summit: Was It a First Step to Peace?

CHARLOTTE, NC — As promised, the June 12 summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un took place in Singapore, with flags of both countries, the red carpet and a much-photographed handshake. Dennis Rodman even showed up, giving the occasion a reality-show air.

But what was accomplished and what happens next?

Opinion: Don’t Expect to See Bill Clinton Campaigning for Hopeful Democrats

In the Wednesday morning quarterbacking after Hillary Clinton’s unexpected loss to Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential race, one criticism was that she had not employed that consummate politician former President Bill Clinton enough in her campaign, to speak to “the people” he could connect with and she could not.

But for all the mistakes the Clinton 2016 campaign operation and the candidate herself made — and there were plenty — sidelining Bill was not one of them.

Opinion: A Not Entirely Unexpected Campaign Roadblock for Women of Color

The women of color who are still standing in an electoral slog that ends in November know their road to continued success will be hard. This is the United States, and the fact that they are still pioneers for getting this far in 2018 is not just news-making but also a little depressing.

It is also true that they can’t always count on the support of some of the same feminists they may have joined — in marches, #MeToo protests and the ballot box.

Opinion: Is It Too Early for North Carolina Democrats to Get Their Hopes Up, Again?

In 2008, Barack Obama’s slim North Carolina victory in his first presidential run had Democrats in the state celebrating in the present and dreaming of a blue future in what had been considered a (relatively) progressive Southern state. Boy, were those dreams premature.

But 10 years later — after new redistricting and voting rules solidified GOP control in both the state and U.S. House delegations and a bill on LGBT rights made the state a poster child for conservative social policies — Democrats are again seeing light at the end of a deep-red tunnel.