Jun 1, 2018

White House slams ad comparing Trump to Osama bin Laden

White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah on Thursday criticized a campaign ad from a Democratic House candidate in Virginia that compares President Donald Trump to Osama bin Laden as “nothing short of reprehensible.”

"Leaders from across the political spectrum — starting with Leader Pelosi — must swiftly condemn this abhorrent message."
— Raj Shah, per a White House press pool report.

The backdrop: The candidate, Dan Helmer, is running in a crowded field for Virginia’s 10th congressional district. He’s seeking to unseat Rep. Barbara Comstock, who’s reportedly one of the most vulnerable House Republicans.

  • Drew Hammill, a spokesman for Pelosi, told Politico that the Minority Leader “does not condone the end of this ad,” adding that “if the president wants to join in raising the level of civility in politics, he should begin with himself.”

Go deeper

Coronavirus hospitalizations keep falling

Data: COVID Tracking Project, Harvard Global Health Institute; Note: Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Nebraska, Tennessee and Puerto Rico have not reported hospitalizations consistently. Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 continues to decline, particularly in New York and other northeastern states that were among the hardest hit by the virus.

Yes, but: Some states are still recording stagnant or rising amounts of hospitalizations.

Updates: George Floyd protests continue past curfews

Protesters on Tuesday evening by the metal fence recently erected outside the White House. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Largely peaceful protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Tuesday night across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day.

The latest: Protesters were out en masse after curfews were in force in areas including Washington, D.C., New York City, Los Angeles and Portland — one of the cities where there was a late-night flash-point between police and protesters.

Primary elections test impact of protests, coronavirus on voting

Election official at a polling place at McKinley Technology High School in Washington, D.C. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

In the midst of a global pandemic and national protests over the death of George Floyd, eight states and the District of Columbia held primary elections on Tuesday.

Why it matters: Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, needs to win 425 of the 479 delegates up for grabs in order to officially clinch the nomination. There are a number of key down-ballot races throughout the country as well, including a primary in Iowa that could determine the fate of Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa).