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Republican Senate candidate in N.J. fires staffer after profane interview

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If there’s still a line in political discourse, Rick Shaftan managed to cross it.

After giving a profanity-riddled website interview earlier this week in which he intimated that Newark N.J. mayor Cory Booker might be gay for not coming on more strongly in a Twitter conversation with a stripper, Shaftan’s boss, Republican New Jersey Senate candidate Steve Lonegan appears to have had enough of him.

Lonegan said Friday that he would fire his senior staffer Shaftan, multiple sources reported Friday.

“Mr. Shaftan’s comments are not reflective of my views or that of my campaign,” Lonegan said in a statement through his campaign spokesman, according to Talking Points Memo. “His comments are distasteful and offensive, and his contract as a vendor for my campaign will be terminated immediately.”

Shaftan’s interview with TPM on Thursday went viral after he called the relatively tame Twitter conversation between Oregon stripper Lynsie Lee that drew public attention last month as “weird” and “like what a gay guy would say. … It’s just like like there was no sexual interest at all. I don’t know. To me, if I was single and you know like some stripper was tweeting me, I might take advantage of the perks of the office, you know?”

Only four days remain in the campaign to succeed the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg. Voting commences Wednesday. Booker has held a lead throughout the race.

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Progressive reformer claims victory in fiercely-contested Queens DA race

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Progressive reformer Tiffany Cabán has declared victory in her campaign versus Melinda Katz in the Queens District Attorney race.

With 99% of precincts reporting, Cabán held a lead of 1,090 votes, The New York Times reports.

Cabán was backed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

Katz was backed by Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), who chairs the Queens Democratic Party, and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY)

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721257353076737

https://twitter.com/CabanForQueens/status/1143721448168710151

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2020 Election

New 2020 poll shows Trump trailing all Democrats — some by double-digits

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President Donald Trump trails all of his Democratic rivals in hypothetical matchups of the 2020 presidential race, according to the result of a new poll released Tuesday.

This article originally appeared on Salon.

The survey, conducted by Emerson Polling, found that the president lags behind former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., by 10 points nationally — 45 percent to 55 percent. He also trails Sen. Elizabeth Warren by six points — 47 percent to 53 percent —and Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg by four points — 48 percent to 52 percent.

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Beto O’Rourke’s ‘war tax’ policy proposal is straight out of ‘Starship Troopers’

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Amid an overcrowded Democratic presidential candidate field, it's hard to distinguish yourself from the pack if you don't slot easily into the scale that runs from "pro-corporate centrist" to "left-populist." If you're former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke —  who falls somewhere in the middle, politically, and somewhere towards the top, looks-wise — you pull a militaristic policy proposal out of your hat that recalls some of the most campy pseudo-fascist sci-fi ever written.

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 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH 

Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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