The world has only a dozen years to stave off catastrophic climate change, a dire report recently warned – but Democrats aren’t making the issue a priority this campaign season.
Democrats have no significant plans to tackle climate change if they gain control of Congress, the Guardian’s Emily Holden reports.
They may have their hands full just maintaining the status quo, as Donald Trump pursues one environmental rollback after another. Democrats plan oversight hearings on those rollbacks if they win.
The party’s efforts as currently planned won’t be enough to spur the rapid transformation in how society operates that leading scientists say is needed to spare humanity from the worst of rising temperatures, extreme weather and massive societal and economic disruptions.
But few in the party – or the big environmental groups that traditionally support it – are prepared to admit this outright.
“Obviously, a transformative government response to climate is clearly needed based on what we’re seeing from science. We have about 10 years left to really be doing something, but it’s hard [for us] to do because the Republican party is largely in denial on this,” said congressman John Delaney, a Maryland Democrat.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is skipping out on a debate Thursday night with his opponents, drawing the ire of the League of Women Voters.
After extensive sniping, Cuomo, who is heavily favored for re-election, agreed to one debate against Republican Marc Molinaro which took place in New York City.
But he won’t attend a debate sponsored by the League of Women Voters in Albany, which features Molinaro as well as three smaller party candidates, the Albany Times Union reported.
“We are extremely frustrated that the governor does not feel a fair, nonpartisan, debate is an appropriate venue to speak directly to voters,” the group said in a statement. “This debate is for voters and open to the public. Five candidates will appear on the ballot next Tuesday. Voters have a right to hear from all five candidates before selecting the next governor of New York State on Election Day.
“If the governor truly wants to speak to voters, he should have made it his priority to attend the only upstate debate of all candidates.”
Despite the widespread anger over Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant policies and rhetoric, Democrats’ trouble getting Latino voters to the polls appears to persist, the Guardian’s Amanda Holpuch and Tom Dart report.
“The biggest misconception is that Latinos are monolithic and that they are single-issue voters and that if a big deal is made about immigration on either side, that’s what’s going to matter to Latinos,” said Stella Rouse, an associate professor of government and politics at the University of Maryland.
Since 1996, less than half of eligible Latino voters have cast ballots in presidential elections.
Seven weeks before the midterm elections, six out of 10 Latinos surveyed nationally said they had not been contacted by a candidate or political party to register to vote, according to the polling firm Latino Decisions. “They are not just going to come out because they are angry,” said Rouse.
A week at Trump’s wild rallies
The Guardian’s Ed Pilkington spent a week traveling the country to cover Donald Trump’s political rallies. He writes:
There is no understanding Donald Trump without understanding his rallies.
They are the crucible of the Trump revolution, the laboratory where he turns his alternative reality into a potion to be sold to his followers. It is at his rallies that his radical reimagining of the US constitution takes shape: not “We the people”, but “We my people”.
As America reels from a gunman killing 11 Jewish worshippers in a Pittsburgh synagogue; pipe bombs being sent to 14 of the US presidents’ leading opponents, and Trump declaring himself a nationalist and sending thousands of troops to the US border to assail unarmed asylum-seekers; the most powerful person on earth continues to rely on his rallies as seething cauldrons of passion.
And that’s not all. Trump is using them as a test run for his 2020 bid for re-election.
Which is why I have criss-crossed the country, from Montana and Wisconsin in the north to Texas in the south, Arizona in the west to North Carolina in the east, to observe the president delivering his message to his people.
Unions and other progressive groups took out a centerfold ad in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, urging Pennsylvanians to “vote against antisemitism,” Politico reports.
See the ad here. It comes days after an antisemitic gunman murdered 11 people at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue.
The ad calls the massacre “the direct result of rhetoric that demonizes Jews and celebrates political violence,” citing a number of comments by Republicans the authors see as evoking antisemitic tropes.
“Antisemitism today is not always as overt as the Tree of Life Congregation shooter’s social media posts, but it is rampant, and it has been embraced by President Donald Trump and others with influential positions in our country,” the ad says.
‘Divisive Donald at his worst’: Trump attacked over racially inflammatory video
Donald Trump has tweeted a racially inflammatory video falsely accusing Democrats of allowing a man who murdered two police officers in California into the country.
The video, posted on social media on Wednesday, is a marker of the increasingly divisive, racially prejudiced rhetoric emanating from the White House in the run-up to the elections, and has been branded by some as one of the most racially charged national political adverts in decades.
It depicts Luis Bracamontes who in April this year was sentenced to death for the murder of two sheriff’s deputies in Sacramento, California. Bracamontes was in the country illegally at the time of the 2014 murder and had been deported twice in the past.
The video falsely claims: “Illegal immigrant, Luis Bracamontes, killed our people! … Democrats let him into our country … Democrats let him stay.”
It has drawn comparisons to the notorious “Willie Horton” campaign adverts released in support of George HW Bush’s 1988 election campaign. Horton, an African American, was convicted of murder and then committed a rape during a furlough program in Massachusetts while Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis was governor.
The advert has long been regarded as one of the most divisive in modern presidential history for deliberately stoking fears over race and security.
But the Horton adverts were not directly endorsed by the Bush campaign, unlike the video published by Trump yesterday.
On Wednesday evening Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez told CNN the video was “divisive Donald at his worst”.
What’s the most important issue in midterms races? For many Democrats, it’s healthcare, the Guardian’s Chris McGreal reports from Kansas City, Missouri. Republicans, meanwhile, are stressing illegal immigration:
Where Republicans once thought attacks on Barack Obama’s healthcare reforms were good fodder for their political campaigns, now they find themselves on the defensive over the issue in key seats. Candidates for Congress, state governor and local offices are hurting their GOP opponents with attacks on their voting records in opposing Obamacare, saying they threaten the protection the law offers such as those for people with pre-existing conditions.
Republican attempts to shift the debate to fears about illegal immigration, which polls show is the most common concern among the party’s voters, have been bolstered in the last week of the midterm campaign by Donald Trump’s dispatch of thousands of troops to the Mexican border, ostensibly to protect it from a caravan of migrant Central Americans who are several weeks away, and his threat to unilaterally overturn the right to citizenship for everyone born in the US, a move that is probably unconstitutional.
A Pew Research Center poll this month put illegal immigration as the highest ranked issue among national problems for Republican electors, although that does not mean it is the single most important factor in deciding who to vote for. At the same time, drug addiction was in second place and more than half of Republicans put affordability of healthcare on their list of the country’s biggest problems.
Another poll, by the Kaiser Family Foundation, found immigration was the single most important issue among only 25% of Republicans in shaping how they vote. Among all voters, healthcare came out on top.
Good morning and welcome to the Guardian’s live midterms coverage.
We’re now five days away from election day, when Americans will decide whether Republicans or Democrats control the House of Representatives, the Senate, and governorships around the country. They’ll deal a blow to Donald Trump, or empower him for the next two years.
We’ll be bringing you updates from our reporters on the trail, news from other sources, and the latest polls and forecasts. Stay tuned.
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