News Roundup for Friday, Aug. 10, 2018

Perfectly legal, but is there an ethics or conflict of interest problem here? Bob Menendez is top foreign relations Democrat in the Senate. His campaign chief Michael Soliman, also his political advisor of his for a decade, is a lobbyist for Qatar

‘Chain migration’ – Melania Trump used a visa opposed by her husband to get her parents’ citizenship. Melania sponsored her parents’ green cards, a status that allowed them to live and work in the U.S. indefinitely and paved the way for citizenship, which they were granted yesterday. Trump calls that kind of immigration ‘chain migration’ and says it’s harmful to the U.S. – and he & his allies seek to end it. Oh and by the way, Melania’s folks’ lawyer is Michael Wildes, the Democratic mayoral nominee in Englewood, NJ.

I love this story. You know VP Mike Pence is coming to Springfield today for Mikie Sherrill’s GOP opponent Jay Webber. So South Orange’s Kathleen Kargoll remembered her son’s crimson graduation gown from Columbia HS 2 years ago. She made a Handmaid’s Tale costume out of it, and put out the call for other grads’ gowns sitting in their closets. She had 20 made by mid-week and still sewing. They’ll show up today to troll Pence. Good. Pence’s evangelical street cred helped bring the religious right to vote Trump. And – wait for it – it’s a an anti-abortion law Pence signed as Indiana governor that could let the Supreme Court reshape abortion law as soon as 2019.

TRENTONIA

MIDTERMS

Hugin, Menendez agree to debate

Beware any entity employing the word ‘Heritage’ that doesn’t manufacture commemorative plates. It’s usually code for: return everything back to when Western Civ was king, men were kings, and whiteness ruled without question. Heritage Action for America is prioritizing Jay Webber’s badly-underfunded CD 11 race

AROUND NEW JERSEY

Mass shooting survivors want tougher national gun laws. They came to NJ for help

It sounds like Councilman Richard Merriken has a major drug problem. He’s just been arrested – again – with a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia, and his colleagues are after him to resign, as they were his first arrest in April. Is anybody on Spring Lake Heights council concerned for him?  Or just the “embarrassment” to Spring Lake Heights and getting rid of him?

Hundreds of school districts should be eliminated, experts say. Here’s the list.

Federal court blocks EPA from rolling back pesticide ban on chlorpyrifos. Jeff Tittle at Sierra Club: “The Trump administration may not care about the health and safety of farmworkers, but the court is telling them they must protect them from this dangerous chemical.”

NATIONAL & NOT NEW JERSEY

It’s not just CNN’s Jim Acosta, reporters are starting to need bodyguards to protect them at Trump rallies

From David Sirota: Documents show Trump basically pasted a bank lobbyist letter into the fine print of a new IRS rule — and so the rule now gives a new $2.5 billion tax cut to bankers

‘Slow Burn’ returns: Slate’s podcast, which focused on Watergate in Season 1, is back. Their next focus? Bill Clinton’s impeachment.

Not New Jersey, but have you seen this? Chicago police park a ‘bait truck’ full of Nike Air Force 1 sneakers and Christian Louboutin shoes in poor black neighborhoods near where young people are playing basketball. They get confronted by residents letting the whole neighborhood know what the police are doing

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