THE CLOCK: 417 days until Election Day 2016 …
THE DEBATE CLOCK: 25 days until the first Democratic debate. 41 days until the GOP candidates debate again.
HAS DONALD TRUMP STALLED?: POLITICO’s Ben Schreckinger reports: After a summer of spectacle and saturation coverage, signs are accumulating that for the public and the media, the onset of Trump fatigue has begun.
Mentions of Trump on both television and radio have been trending downward for a month from their post-Fox debate high. His share of Twitter conversation relative to other candidates has declined in recent weeks, and his odds in political prediction markets have dipped in the hours since Wednesday night’s debate.
Radio and television conversation about Trump peaked on Aug. 7, the day after the first Republican debate, with close to 11,000 mentions of his name on each medium that day, according to data through Monday provided by media monitoring firm Critical Mention. The last time Trump reached even half as many mentions on either medium was on Aug. 26, the day after he clashed dramatically with Univision anchor Jorge Ramos at a press conference in Iowa.
Trump’s most dominant day of the campaign on Twitter was Aug. 26, when 80 percent of conversations about Republican presidential candidates were about him, according to data through mid-Thursday provided by the analytics firm Echelon Insights. Since that day, his share of Twitter conversation has trended downward. Read more at POLITICO http://politi.co/1FjQBuN
It’s Thursday, no morning-after malaise here, welcome to your 2016 Blast. Henry C. Jackson (@henrycjjackson) is here to guide you through today’s campaign news. Send your tips, complaints, and hottest hot takes to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
TRAIL MIX: Here’s what’s popping on the campaign trail
In today’s campaign news, HILLARY CLINTON’s orbit obsesses over DONALD TRUMP. BERNIE SANDERS is a Time cover boy — and maybe the leader in New Hampshire. People are talking about JOE BIDEN on Amtrak. On the GOP side, DONALD TRUMP is subdued, CARLY FIORINA takes a victory lap and today gets into a spat with Planned Parenthood. Wan, Wisconsin: SCOTT WALKER faces calls for a shakeup after an iffy debate performance. JEB BUSH embraces big brother, and MARCO RUBIO thinks MARCO RUBIO did a swell job.
THE DAILY CLINTON
TRUMP LOVE: POLITICO’s Annie Karni reports: “DONALD TRUMP fever has taken hold in HILLARY CLINTON‘s world, where donors and operatives close to her campaign are looking at Trump with a mix of awe and morbid curiosity … “It’s absolutely entertaining to watch him,” admitted longtime Clinton donor Jay Jacobs.” http://politi.co/1FjE22R
BERNIE BRACKETING: MSNBC: “Two of Vermont’s most prominent Democrats will campaign for HILLARY CLINTON this week, sending a clear message to fellow Vermonter BERNIE SANDERS … Gov. Peter Shumlin will appear with Clinton in in New Hampshire on Thursday … Saturday … former Gov. Howard Dean will speak on Clinton’s behalf to 3,000 Massachusetts Democrats. “http://on.msnbc.com/1FP8VXE
SERVER UPDATE: POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein reports that HILLARY CLINTON’s personal attorney “balked at the State Department’s first effort to erase a newly classified email from the thumb drive containing about 30,000 messages” because “deleting the now-secret message could run afoul of promises he previously made to the House Benghazi committee and two inspectors general.” http://politi.co/1W5gvH7
DONOR NAIL-BITING: POLITICO’s Marc Caputo reports that southeastern Clinton donors expressed concerns about “about her ‘email fiasco’ or the threat of ‘new Benghazis.’ “The call, led by Clinton press secretary Brian Fallon and listened to by a POLITICO reporter, provided what sounded like a frank look at the campaign’s strengths and weaknesses — from Clinton’s slipping early state poll numbers to her sometimes-plodding crisis response.” http://politi.co/1KiUpt6
THE PROGRESSIVE RESISTANCE
NEW HAMPSHIRE FRONT-RUNNER?: POLITICO’s Eliza Collins reports: “BERNIE SANDERS is holding tight to his lead over HILLARY CLINTON in New Hampshire, according to a WBUR poll … The Vermont senator leads Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire 32 percent to Clinton’s 29 percent. Vice President JOE BIDEN —who has not announced a bid for the White House but has been openly flirting with the idea — comes in third with 12 percent. Former Maryland Gov. MARTIN O’MALLEY barely registers with 1 percent.”
COVER BOY: BERNIE SANDERS graces the cover of Time magazine this week, with a long profile: http://ti.me/1F4b8DQ
BERNIE THE VIDEO GAME: Mother Jones has an entertaining throwback from his 2006 Senate campaign: http://bit.ly/1QkZhSo
REALLY, REALLY BIG IF TRUE: National Review overhears Josh Alcorn, head of the Draft Biden super PAC, talking “loud enough in the cafe car to make it hard to work” about JOE BIDEN’s potential entry into the 2016 fray. “Alcorn had said on one call, ‘I am 100 percent that Joe is in.’ He was less certain of when Biden would announce, but guessed it would be in mid-October.”
JUST SAYING: Where else would you hope to hear Biden chatter but on the veep’s beloved Amtrak? http://bit.ly/1KoYXNV
TRUMP ON THE STUMP
TRUMP TRUMPED: POLITICO’s Ben Schreckinger reports that we have entered “new stage of the Republican nominating contest, where if DONALD TRUMP’s lead in the polls doesn’t immediately break down, his vice-grip on the narrative does. The three-hour debate exposed Trump’s weak command of several issues. And it was simply too long, and the format too free-wheeling, for any single personality to dominate the night.”
TOUGH ASSESMENT: “He didn’t meet the moment,” said Purple Strategies President Bruce Haynes, calling it “the disappearing act of DONALD TRUMP.”
SUBDUED: POLITICO’s Nick Gass reports on DONALD TRUMP’s rough morning after. “There’s no way of telling if Trump’s relatively subdued tone … is here to stay, but it seemed to usher in a new chapter of the Trump presidential saga, even if it’s fleeting. His notorious Twitter feed on Thursday was even upbeat and restrained (for Trump).” http://politi.co/1Kt9j3G
** A message from the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition: With all eyes on Ronald Reagan’s legacy this week, his Secretary of State George Shultz weighs in on Reagan’s “peace through strength” mantra and how America’s strategic investments in diplomacy and development are “a big bang for the buck.” WATCH HERE: http://usg.lc/1USn5U6 **
RAVE REVIEWS: POLITICO’s Daniel Strauss and Kyle Cheney scoop: “An exclusive group of influential Republicans had rave reviews for CARLY FIORINA’s debate performance: state GOP chairs. Fiorina was the clear winner in an informal straw poll held at a private debate-watching party in Maine Wednesday, where Republican National Committee officials and GOP leaders from nine states — including the Republican chairs from early-voting New Hampshire and South Carolina — had gathered to share organizing and fundraising strategies.” http://politi.co/1Kp6wUI
CARLY CRUSH: POLITICO Caucus Insiders also thought Fiorina nailed it; POLITICO’s Katie Glueck has more: http://politi.co/1KrHton
VICTORY LAP: POLITICO’s Katie Glueck reports: “Phones were ringing off the hook at CARLY for America, the super PAC that’s essentially running FIorina’s ground game. Keith Appell, a senior adviser to the super PAC, said it was too early to know anything certain but all signs pointed to a post-debate surge in fundraising. In the field, there were similar signs that Fiorina was on the rise. She is already slated for an Iowa swing next week that’s set to include stops in Iowa City, Davenport and Dubuque, and in the wake of the second debate, the campaign is fielding a slew of additional invitations, including from a college and a county party.” http://politi.co/1KUn0dZ
RAVE: From The Transom, a popular newsletter among the GOP, sums up last night this way: “There is only one headline, and that is the political arrival of CARLY FIORINA.” http://thetransom.org
PARENTHOOD FIGHT: POLITICO’s Nick Gass reports: “Planned Parenthood fired back at CARLY FIORINA’s characterization of videos released by anti-abortion activists on Thursday by calling her a liar… Fiorina, appearing on ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’ earlier Thursday, responded to numerous media fact-checks by saying that ‘rest assured,’ she had seen what she had described during the debate.” http://politi.co/1P4s5y2
WRONGOMETER concludes, “The videos that have stirred up so much trouble for Planned Parenthood don’t show what Fiorina claims.” http://politi.co/1W4gnHQ
COMPUTER PROBLEMS?: The Washington Post takes a look at the ads from Fiorina’s failed 2010 Senate bid and predicts her time as CEO of Hewlett-Packard may still come back to haunt her: http://wapo.st/1FjwuNx
WATCH: Barbara Boxer’s killer H-P ad: http://bit.ly/1Kp4h3C
EMBRACING BIG BROTHER: The New York Times: “JEB BUSH has sent conflicting signals about how he planned to deal with the legacy of his brother, former President George W. Bush … But on Thursday, the day after the second Republican presidential debate, in which he strongly defended his brother against DONALD TRUMP, Mr. Bush highlighted that moment on his Twitter feed.” http://nyti.ms/1ikingk
IRON LADY NOT IRON CLAD: NBC: “JEB BUSH might be changing his mind about his statement that he’d like to see former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on the $ 10 bill … Bush instead said that he’d like to see the American people decide which woman deserves to be on U.S. currency, suggesting that a question about the bill during the second GOP presidential debate Wednesday night was not ‘the most relevant thing in the world.’” http://nbcnews.to/1Me9xLl
MICHIGANDERS FOR JEB: The Associated Press: “Ahead of a campaign stop in Michigan, Republican JEB BUSH’s presidential campaign announced Thursday he has more than 200 supporters across the state … Among Bush supporters in Michigan are a host of state lawmakers, along with Attorney General Bill Schuette and U.S. Rep. David Trott.” http://bit.ly/1FQ0fR5
WAN WISCONSIN: POLITICO’s Shane Goldmacher and Alex Isenstadt report that SCOTT WALKER was desperate to make a mark but, “for long swaths of the unruly three-hour debate Walker seemed entirely absent. The disappearing act was ill timed … a sharp slide in national polls that has brought him within the margin of error of zero. Instead, he turned in a workmanlike performance.” http://politi.co/1KoZzDd
DES MOINES OR BUST: The Associated Press: “SCOTT WALKER is downshifting his initially ambitious campaign for president to focus on first-to-vote Iowa … ‘We’re putting all our eggs in the basket of Iowa,’ he told MSNBC.” http://bit.ly/1ijUHss
UH-OH: Washington Post has a piece full of negative bites for Walker-land: Donors calling for the removal of campaign manager Rick Wiley, and at least one big donor, Stanley S. Hubbard, openly considering giving to other candidates. “I think I might help some other candidates too,” said Hubbard. “There might be some good candidates.” http://wapo.st/1KTFGuz
DAYTIME FUTURE: Columbus Dispatch: Appearing on “The View” after the debate on Thursday, JOHN KASICH “gushed,” “When I get out of this business I want to be one of the hosts on ‘The View.’ You guys have too much fun.” http://bit.ly/1JdXads
IF YOU’RE INTO THAT SORT OF THING: Red State pans JOHN KASICH as “The Republican for people who hate Republicans.” http://bit.ly/1iAfkkX
SURVEYING THE 2016 LANDSCAPE
ONE GUY’S TAKE: Gawker: According to MARCO RUBIO on Marco Rubio’s website, MarcoRubio.com, Marco Rubio absolutely crushed it at last night’s GOP debate, or as Marco Rubio decided to call it, “Marco’s Moment.” The gif is worth the click. http://bit.ly/1P4LoaA
TERMINAL: POLITICO’s Nick Gass reports White House press secretary Josh Earnest likened last night’s debate to an airport. “You saw a dozen people in suits who are lined up in kiosks in front of a plane. They seemed angry, they seemed pessimistic and they were looking for somebody to threaten. But, they also stood there for three hours, so you can hardly blame them.” http://politi.co/1UXNpqF
NEXT NEWS CYCLE
HILLARY CLINTON is in New Hampshire and Maine.
Time cover boy BERNIE SANDERS is in New York.
Cattle Call! DONALD TRUMP, BEN CARSON CARLY FIORINA, JEB BUSH, TED CRUZ, MARCO RUBIO, CHRIS CHRISTIE, RAND PAUL, BOBBY JINDAL, RICK SANTORUM and SCOTT WALKER appear at the Heritage Action forum in Greenville, S.C.
THE DAILY NUMBER
22.9 million: That’s how many viewers tuned in to last night’s GOP debate on CNN. That makes it the most watched program in the network’s history.
FOLLOW @POLITICO’S politics team: @PoliticoCharlie, @POLITICO_Steve, @PoliticoAlex, @anniekarini, @GlennThrush, @EliStokols, @katieglueck, @shreckreports, @tparti, @gdebenedetti, @Hadas_Gold, @ec_schneider, @kyledcheney , @theodoricmeyer, @MarcACaputo, @CateMartel, @PoliticoKevin,@mikeallen, @dlippman, @Danielstrauss4, @henrycjjackson, @shanegoldmacher,@KristinPolitico
** A message from the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition: Under President Reagan, strengthening foreign assistance was always part of our larger strategy for expanding freedom, supporting our strategic allies like Israel and Jordan, encouraging robust economic growth, and reducing corruption.
With all eyes on his legacy this week, Reagan’s Secretary of State George Shultz weighs in on his “peace through strength” mantra and how America’s strategic investments in diplomacy and development are “a big bang for the buck.” WATCH HERE: http://usg.lc/1USn5U6
Named the “strange bedfellows” coalition by the Washington Post, the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) is a broad-based influential network of 400 businesses and NGOs; national security and foreign policy experts; and business, faith-based, academic and community leaders in all 50 states who support strategic investments in development and diplomacy alongside defense to build a better, safer world. **