Jun 26, 2018

Trump might not be able to save Dean Heller

President Trump campaigned for Sen. Dean Heller. Photo: Michael Reynolds, Pool/Getty Images

The GOP tax law and Sen. Dean Heller's abysmal approval ratings will make it even harder for President Trump to save him.

Driving the news: Only 24% of voters think Heller "deserves re-election," according to Morning Consult — and, to add to his woes, the liberal coalition group Tax March put up a $500,000 ad buy in Las Vegas and Reno hitting Republicans for giving tax breaks to the wealthy.

  • The Republican tax law includes provisions that hit tax-exempt organizations, like churches, per Politico, which would require them to pay taxes for the first time ever. This matters because the GOP largely depends on religious voters, and 66% of Nevadans identify as Christians.
  • Since late April, support of the GOP's tax law nationwide has slipped by six points, per a recent Monmouth University poll.

Why it matters: Democrats view Nevada's U.S. Senate seat as one of their best pickup chances in 2018, which would be a needed buffer given that the map is working against them.

The Trump factor: President Trump stumped with Heller in Las Vegas last weekend, where he acknowledged their initially "shaky" relationship, but he credited Heller for fighting for the GOP tax law.

  • Senate Leadership Fund, the super PAC aligned with Mitch McConnell, plans to invest $11.2 million in the Nevada Senate race.

The bottom line: An endorsement from POTUS has proven to be helpful in some races, but Hillary Clinton won the state in 2016, adding to Heller's uphill battle.

Go deeper

Italy becomes site of largest coronavirus outbreak outside of Asia

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus has spread to more nations as South Korea and Italy step up emergency measures in their countries amid rising case numbers on Sunday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed at least 2,462 people and infected almost 79,000 others, mostly in mainland China. South Korea increased the infectious disease alert to red, the highest possible, as its case numbers jumped to 602 and the death toll to five. Italy's government announced emergency measures as it confirmed a spike from three to 132 cases in matter of days, making it the largest outbreak outside of Asia.

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Iranian state TV: Hardliners win landslide victory in low-turnout election

Photo: Iranian Supreme Leader Press Office/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Iranian state TV announced Sunday that hardliners won a landslide victory in the country's parliamentary elections two days ago, including all 30 seats in Tehran, AP reports.

Why it matters: Voter turnout in the election only reached 42.57%, according to Iran's interior ministry, the first time turnout dipped below 50% since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The low turnout may signal dissatisfaction with the Iranian government and the election system.

Go deeperArrow1 hour ago - World

Coronavirus threatens shortages of about 150 drugs

A medical worker in Beijing. Photo: Greg Baker/AFP via Getty Images

About 150 prescription drugs — including antibiotics, generics and some branded drugs without alternatives — are at risk of shortage if the coronavirus outbreak in China worsens, according to two sources familiar with a list of at-risk drugs compiled by the Food and Drug Administration.

Why it matters: China is a huge supplier of the ingredients used to make drugs that are sold in the U.S. If the virus decreases China's production capability, Americans who rely on the drugs made from these ingredients could be in trouble.