Sat. Jul 13th, 2024

Biden faces his next campus test over Gaza: From the Politics Desk

By 37ci3 May11,2024



Welcome to the online version of From the policy deskevening bulletin that brings you the latest reporting and analysis from the campaign trail, the White House and Capitol Hill from the NBC News Politics team.

In today’s edition, campaign Nnamdi Egwuonwu posted reports of tension at Morehouse College over Joe Biden’s commencement speech next week. Plus, “Meet the Press” moderator Kristen Welker presents Sunday’s interview with Secretary of State Anthony Blicken.

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The Morehouse faculty will vote next week on whether to award Biden an honorary degree

By Nnamdi Egwuonwu

ATLANTA — After feeling pressure for much of the spring from college students protesting his handling of the Israel-Hamas war, President Joe Biden will face a new challenge on campus next week.

A group of Morehouse College teachers are trying to shut down the school conferring the title of honorary doctor May 19 at Biden’s inauguration. Morehouse President David Thomas held a virtual meeting with faculty members Wednesday to discuss the issue.

“Most of the comments were against the honorary degree, but there were a few very strong defenses,” said one faculty member on the convocation.


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Opponents of the decision criticized Biden’s policies on policing and mass incarceration, his handling of the conflict in Gaza and more recently comments around student protests. Supporters of the honorary degree called the attacks on Biden’s handling of the war in Gaza “baseless,” according to the caller.

Still, it’s not clear how widespread the discontent is. Although Morehouse announced last month that Biden would be awarded an honorary doctorate, due to procedure, the faculty still has to vote on it. That vote will take place Thursday — three days before commencement — at a regularly scheduled faculty meeting, according to a faculty member.

Ahead of Biden’s speech, some teachers also began circulating a letter to express their “collective displeasure.” He respects Biden.

The protests highlight frustrations with Biden on many college campuses. pro-Palestinian protests in recent weeks. Biden will also be the commencement speaker at the US Military Academy at West Point.

More →


Biden’s biggest news this week

By Kristen Welker

Biden made a lot of news in an interview this week CNN’s Erin Burnett.

He warned Israel It would not hand over its offensive weapons if its military continued with a full-scale occupation of Rafah. He promised that Donald Trump will not accept The result of the 2024 elections. And he said if elected, Trump would “erase” many of Biden’s policy achievements, including allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices.

But perhaps the biggest news that Biden gave in that interview was his admission that the United States had provided weapons that killed civilians in Israel’s war against Hamas.

Burnett: I know that you, Mr. President, have suspended the shipment of 2,000 pound US bombs to Israel out of concern that they could be used in any attack in Rafah. Were those bombs, those powerful 2,000-pound bombs, used to kill civilians in Gaza?

Biden: Civilians in Gaza have died as a result of these bombs and their pursuit of settlements.

On the one hand, Biden’s admission is common sense: Israel’s campaign has killed thousands of civilians, and the United States is Israel’s largest arms supplier.

On the other hand, it’s not every day that an American president admits that US-supplied weapons kill innocent civilians.

It raises a number of questions that I hope to explore on Meet the Press this Sunday when I speak to Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. and I will also have interviews with Lindsey Graham, RSC.

What is Biden’s red line?

Is the US complicit in these civilian deaths as Biden suggests?

If so, why is the Biden administration still sending both offensive and defensive weapons to Israel? This was reported by NBC News?

Or did Biden’s comments hurt Israel’s war against Hamas? (Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu he said His country is ready to go it alone if the US cuts off arms supplies.)

What does it mean that the negotiations reached a ceasefire?

And – to top it all off – there will be an Israel-Hamas war high level issue for voters in November?

Be sure to tune in for the answers on Sunday.


Trump will face Michael Cohen in court as the criminal case nears completion

Adam Reiss, Gary Grumbach, Jillian Frankel, and Dareh Gregorian

Stormi Daniels has finished testifying, but another high-profile target of Donald Trump will take the witness stand at Monday’s hearing. Criminal – his former lawyer Michael Cohen, multiple sources told NBC News.

Both Daniels, an adult film actress, and Cohen, a onetime Trump fixer, are outspoken critics of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee and key witnesses in Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s falsification case. The former president labeled both of them “scumbags”.

The move to subpoena Cohen came at the end of Friday’s trial when the prosecutor said the DA’s office had only two witnesses left and could rest its case next week. Cohen’s testimony is expected to last several days.

Trump’s attorney, Todd Blanche, asked Judge Juan Merchan to bar Cohen from commenting publicly on the case as he prepares to take the stand. He noted that Cohen wore a T-shirt on TikTok this week showing Trump in an orange jumpsuit behind bars.

Blanche previously complained about Cohen’s social media posts and interviews critical of Trump during the trial. Cohen often slowed down his comments after Merchan said his comments could exclude him from Trump’s gag order barring him from attacking witnesses in the case.

Steinglass said the DA’s office had previously asked Cohen to stop talking. The judge ordered the DA to tell Cohen that the judge had asked him to stop.

Trump was furious at the lack of a gag order for Cohen after the day’s proceedings were over. “Everyone can say what they want,” but “I can’t say anything,” he told a group of reporters in the courthouse hallway. “It’s a shame.”

Read more from the 15th day of the Trump trial →



🗞️ The best stories of the day

  • 🫏 Dems are divided into: Biden is facing fresh criticism from some lawmakers and voters in battleground states where his stance on Israel poses the greatest political risk to his reelection efforts. More →
  • ⚖️ Agreements: Two operatives tied to indicted Rep. Henry Cuellar, including the Texas Democrat’s former campaign manager, have agreed to plea deals as part of a bribery case against the congressman. More →
  • ⏱️ Applications are not accepted: An appeals court has upheld former Trump aide Steve Bannon’s conviction on two counts of contempt of Congress, but he is unlikely to report to prison immediately. More →
  • 🏫 The controversy flared up again: A Virginia school board has approved a proposal that would restore the names of Confederate military leaders to two public schools. More →
  • ✈️ Plane landing: The Senate passed a bill late Thursday to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration with measures to increase staffing, speed up refunds to customers and add more flights at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. More →
  • ☀️ Trump’s Happy Place: As he faces a mix of political, legal and financial headwinds, The Washington Post examines how Trump has created an “alternate reality” for himself at Mar-a-Lago. More →

For now, here they are from The Politics Desk. If you have feedback – like it or not – email us politicsnewsletter@nbcuni.com

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