Apr 10, 2017

Trump is robocalling for Kansas special election

Carolyn Kaster / AP

President Trump has recorded a robocall in support of Kansas State Treasurer Ron Estes' bid for the House seat vacated by CIA Director Mike Pompeo. The special election is tomorrow, and it's the first Congressional election since Trump took office.

Why it matters: The Republican nerves are showing; Kansas' 4th should be safe for the GOP — it's home to Koch Industries and party mega-donor Charles Koch — but they're still pulling in the big guns, including Mike Pence, Ted Cruz and now Trump. Here's what Trump is telling voters:

Ron is going to be helping us, big league... I need Republicans like Ron Estes to help me get the job done.

As Cruz put it at rally today in Wichita, "Today, the eyes of the whole country are on Kansas."

Go deeper

Trump hits back at Mattis: "I gave him a new life"

President Trump speaks at the White House. Photo: Doug Mills - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump unloaded on his former defense secretary via Twitter on Wednesday, hours after James Mattis condemned him for making a "mockery of our Constitution" in his response to mass protests in the wake of George Floyd's killing.

What he's saying: "Probably the only thing Barack Obama & I have in common is that we both had the honor of firing Jim Mattis, the world’s most overrated General. I asked for his letter of resignation, & felt great about it. His nickname was 'Chaos', which I didn’t like, & changed it to 'Mad Dog'"

Obama praises young protesters, urges mayors to pursue police reforms

Former President Barack Obama called on all mayors to review their use-of-force policies and commit to policing reform in a virtual town hall Wednesday hosted by the Obama Foundation's My Brothers Keepers Alliance.

Why it matters: Obama has addressed the killing of George Floyd and the nationwide protests that followed on social media and in a Medium post, but this was his first time speaking about the past week's events on camera. His voice will add weight to the growing pressure on local, state and federal officials to pursue policing reforms.

James Mattis condemns Trump as a threat to the Constitution

Mattis on Fox in Septemnber 2019 in New York City. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis condemned President Trump for making a "mockery of our Constitution" in a statement to The Atlantic on Wednesday, saying he was "appalled" at the president's response to mass protests in the wake of George Floyd's killing.

Why it matters: Trump’s former defense secretary had refrained from publicly criticizing his former boss since resigning in 2018.