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The second coronavirus spike makes it official — this is Trump’s plague now: conservative David Frum

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Writing in The Atlantic this Monday, David Frum contends that while the first peak in coronavirus cases this April was due to Trump’s negligence, but now that on June 24 the number of infections surpassed the April 24 peak, it can no longer be blamed on simple negligence. This time it’s his own doing. “This is Trump’s plague now,” Frum writes.

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“The city of Tulsa, Oklahoma, has been enforcing social-distancing rules, and for good reason,” he writes. “From June 1 to June 15, new COVID-19 cases in the state jumped from 67 in a day to 186. In advance of Trump’s rally in Tulsa on June 20, city employees affixed do not sit here please stickers to every other seat in the stadium venue. Trump campaign workers were captured on video removing the stickers so that Trump could cram attendees closer together. On June 26, Oklahoma reported 396 new infections in a single day.”

While there’s more than one factor involved in the resurgence of the virus, “Trump’s elevation of the needs of his own ego over the well-being of even his strongest supporters is profoundly implicated in the virus’s powerful June comeback.”

As Frum points out, from mid- to late April, the trajectory of cases in states such as Georgia, Florida, and Texas was relatively flat, not down, but Trump went ahead and cheered for states to reopen anyway — a line that was endorsed by his favorite media outlet, Fox News.

“Early reopening could only have worked if stringent safety measures, including the use of face masks and social distancing, were incorporated,” writes Frum. “Yet the president sabotaged the reopening he himself had forced. Throughout his presidency, Trump has subordinated rational policy in order to provoke virulent culture wars. And the mask has become a rallying symbol for his supporters.”

Read the full op-ed over at The Atlantic.

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The problem isn’t the campaign manager — it’s Trump: Republican analyst

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Switching up the campaign manager four months before the election when the latest poll shows you 12 points down has nothing to do with the campaign's leadership, Republican analyst Amanda Carpenter explained on CNN Wednesday.

"The problem isn't that Donald Trump has a bad campaigner," said Carpenter in an interview with CNN's Don Lemon. "They're raising tons of money. They have a boatload of surrogates. The problem is that he has a bad presidency. And no one -- no one, no spin master, not Kellyanne Conway, not Brad Parscale can spin the most important number of this election, and that's -- at present, 137,000 dead and rising. And so what we need to see if Donald Trump wants to turn this around is to turn around his white house. And I have four words of advice: More Fauci, less Kayleigh."

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Here’s what you need to know about Bill Stepien — the man who just took over Trump’s fledgling campaign

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President Donald Trump announced that his campaign manager, Brad Parscale, is being shoved out of his role given the failures the campaign has suffered over the past seven months.

In his place, for now, at least, will be Bill Stepien.

If that name sounds familiar, it may be because Stepien was part of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's Bridgegate scandal, where, as punishment to Mayor Mark Sokolich, two of three toll lanes were closed during a Monday morning rush hour and weren't reopened until Friday.

The court case quoted Bill Stepien's name over 700 times, including an email in which he claimed, "It will be a tough November for this little Serbian." The mayor was born in Fort Lee, and his lineage isn't Serbian, it's actually Croatian.

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Anti-corruption group files motion in Roger Stone case saying pardon is void due to ‘self dealing’

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The anti-corruption group Free Speech for the People filed a motion with Judge Amy Berman Jackson opposing the pardon of President Donald Trump's pal, Roger Stone.

According to the organization's president, John Bonifaz, there are "limits to the pardon power" that the president holds, "including when the power is abused for self-dealing purposes." He said that Stone's "commutation violates the Take Care Clause of the Constitution," and thus, should be declared void.

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