Monday News: Dog whistle stop

PERRY AND MURPHY CALL EACH OTHER LIBERALS AS RUNOFF LOOMS: On a sultry summer morning, Diane McKillop stood in her driveway gushing over Dr. Joan Perry, the Republican congressional candidate who showed up at her door to ask for her vote. McKillop, a 72-year-old nurse, loves that Perry is a pediatrician, and regards her as exactly the kind of person she wants to send to Washington: a strong conservative who opposes abortion and will deal with what McKillop describes as “all these Mexicans” by building a wall and securing the border. But there’s something else on her mind, she tells Perry, leaning in slightly and lowering her voice as if sharing a secret with a girlfriend. “I sort of like that you’re a woman; is that a little prejudiced?” McKillop said last week with a giggle.

REPUBLICANS WILL ATTEMPT TO OVERRIDE COOPER'S VETO OF BUDGET TODAY(?): North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper won't get to influence a final state budget unless enough fellow Democrats uphold his veto of a spending plan penned by General Assembly Republicans. The GOP-controlled state House scheduled for Monday an override vote on Cooper's budget veto. Only three Democrats sided with House Republicans during a final budget vote last week. Republicans likely won't be successful unless that number more than doubles. Both the House and Senate would have to agree to an override. Cooper and Democratic legislative leaders are confident that won't happen, leading to potentially protracted negotiations with Republicans. Cooper called the GOP budget an "absolute failure" for lacking Medicaid expansion and cutting corporate taxes. Republicans say Cooper is blocking state worker pay raises and other health care benefits with his veto.

TIM MOORE SPREADS LIES ABOUT ABORTION RULING BY COURT: On former Gov. Pat McCrory’s radio show June 4, House Speaker Tim Moore misrepresented the political background of the presiding judge in that case, when he said “liberal federal judges” struck down the 20-week ban. District Judge William Osteen, who wrote the ruling, was appointed to the court by Republican President George W. Bush. Moore then suggested that the ruling greatly loosened the state’s abortion laws. “Now in North Carolina, under that law, someone can get an abortion up until right before the baby is delivered,” Moore said. Those were exaggerations. Generally speaking, the medical community believes viability occurs sometime between 24 and 28 weeks, according to Laurie Sobel, associate director of women’s health policy for the Kaiser Family Foundation. Most pregnancies last 37–40 weeks. So Moore’s claim that women can now get an abortion “up until right before the baby is delivered” is “disingenuous,” Sobel said.

TRUMP PAL JEFFREY EPSTEIN TAKEN INTO CUSTODY OVER SOLICITING UNDERAGE GIRLS: The latest charges add a significant new wrinkle to the considerable political and legal saga surrounding Epstein. The wealthy financier — who counted among his friends President Trump and former president Bill Clinton — pleaded guilty in 2008 to state charges in Florida of soliciting prostitution in a controversial arrangement that allowed him to resolve far more serious federal allegations of molesting young girls. His case was the subject of an investigation by the Miami Herald, which detailed how then-U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta, now Trump’s labor secretary, shelved a 53-page federal indictment that could have put Epstein behind bars for life. The arrangement is now being investigated by the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility, which is seeking to determine whether the attorneys involved committed “professional misconduct” in bringing about its close. The person familiar with the matter said the new charges against Epstein are for conduct similar to those that brought about his plea deal. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the specific counts remain under seal.

IRAN EXCEEDS URANIUM ENRICHMENT LEVELS SET IN TREATY: Behrouz Kamalvandi, a spokesman for Iran’s atomic energy agency, told the Iranian state broadcaster IRIB that the country had surpassed a limit of 3.67 percent uranium enrichment, and was prepared to go further. Mr. Kamalvandi later told another Iranian news outlet, ISNA, that the enrichment level was above 4.5 percent. He added that inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency, who have the task of monitoring Iran’s compliance with the limits set out in the deal, were expected to confirm that information on Monday. The agency said it was working to verify the level of enrichment. The change moves Iran closer to — but still far short of — the level of uranium enrichment needed to produce nuclear weapons (20%-90%). But Iran has maintained that the higher enrichment level would be for peaceful purposes only.