Welcome to the online version of From the Politics Desk, an evening newsletter that brings you the NBC News Politics team’s latest reporting and analysis from the campaign trail, the White House and Capitol Hill.

In today’s edition, national political reporter Ben Kamisar breaks down the latest NBC News Deciders Focus Group series on union voters in Michigan. Plus, No Labels ends its bipartisan presidential efforts.

Sign up to receive this newsletter in your inbox every weekday here.

How Michigan’s key union voters are making up their minds between Biden and Trump

By Ben Kamisar

The battle for union voters in Michigan has taken center stage this year, as Joe Biden and Donald Trump seek to sway this large and important voting bloc in a key battleground state.

And for many of these voters, their political affiliation comes well before their union affiliation.

That was the takeaway from the latest NBC News Deciders Focus Group series with union-affiliated voters in the state, conducted with our friends from Engagious, Syracuse University and Sago. Polling shows Biden with a slight edge among union-affiliated voters nationwide after he won them by double digits in 2020, and he’s earned endorsements from leaders of major unions, including the United Auto Workers. But our focus group participants were almost evenly divided between Biden and Trump.

Do you have a news tip? Let us know

Not one of the 15 focus group participants said Trump’s policies were pro-union. That didn’t matter to the former president’s backers, some of whom argued their candidate was pro-worker, not pro-union.

“I think he’s pro-get-people-back-to-work, it doesn’t matter if you’re union or not. … He wants companies to make money, and then their workers work and they make money.” — Larry P., a 66-year-old retired UAW member from Livonia

The Biden supporters in the group had some positive things to say about the president’s work on student debt relief and backing unions. But many said they sided with Biden because of their dislike of Trump.

“He’s a better alternative than the one that’s running against him, because he’s not trying to cause violence within the country, he’s not turning the people against each other as Trump is.” — Paul B., a 66-year-old retired UAW member from Detroit

Two of the voters in the focus group, one Republican and one Democrat, said they wouldn’t vote for Trump or Biden — and one spelled out the extreme apathy and frustration many voters have with the choice this fall.

“It’s going to be a dumpster fire either way, but I don’t think my vote’s going to matter. … It’s just going to be another politician. It’s like choosing between a bag of garbage and another bag of garbage.” — Colleen T., a 38-year-old registered Democrat from Grayling whose father is a UAW member

Read more →

No Labels’ bid is no more, but Democrats are targeting another third-party threat

No Labels, the bipartisan group that had been working toward putting a third-party presidential ticket on the ballot in all 50 states in 2024, announced Thursday that it was ending its efforts, Vaughn Hillyard, Katherine Koretski and Stephanie Ruhle reported.

“No Labels has always said we would only offer our ballot line to a ticket if we could identify candidates with a credible path to winning the White House,” No Labels CEO and co-founder Nancy Jacobson said in a statement. “No such candidates emerged, so the responsible course of action is for us to stand down.”

The group was spurned by at least a dozen candidates during its recruitment efforts, from former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu on the Republican side to Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick on the Democratic side, NBC News reported

Democrats had feared a No Labels ticket would have splintered Biden’s coalition. But the party has been increasingly turning its focus to another third-party threat.

Alex Seitz-Wald and Hillyard report that Democrats are waging an open war on independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. The party has grown increasingly alarmed by his strength in the polls, especially since he named Silicon Valley philanthropist Nicole Shanahan as his running mate. Not only could she fund the cash-strapped campaign, but the way the campaign introduced her signaled that Kennedy is positioning himself more on the left. 

There are now brand-new Democratic super PACs devoted to crushing third-party candidates. Democratic National Committee mobile billboards troll Kennedy at events. And party donors are funding legal efforts to try to keep him off the ballot.

It’s a much different approach than the one Democrats took in 2016, when they largely ignored third-party candidates. But they want to avoid a repeat of that election, when Green Party nominee Jill Stein siphoned off potential votes from Hillary Clinton in key swing states.

“Everyone thinks this is going to be decided on the head of a pin, so people are freaked out like never before,” said one senior Democrat, granted anonymity to speak candidly.

🗞️ Today’s top stories

  • 💥 Electoral College dropout: Nebraska lawmakers blocked an effort to change how the state allocates its Electoral College votes, despite public pressure from Donald Trump to shift to a winner-take-all system that would likely benefit him. Read more →
  • 🚔 The Jan. 6 rioters Trump says are “hostages”: Trump continues to praise those who are in jail awaiting trial for storming the Capitol, many of whom are accused of assaulting police or tried to run from authorities. Read more →
  • 🚫 Rejected x2: Trump had bids to dismiss two of his cases rejected today. First, a judge denied Trump’s effort to dismiss the Georgia election interference charges on First Amendment grounds. Then, a judge rejected his bid to dismiss the classified documents case using the Presidential Records Act. Read more →
  • 📲 Tough Biden-Bibi phone call: Biden told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a phone call that the strike that killed aid workers earlier this week was “unacceptable,” and said the country must outline clear steps to protect civilians. Read more →
  • 🇮🇱 GOP primary wedge issue: Two pro-Israel groups are launching ad campaigns against former GOP Rep. John Hostettler of Indiana, who is looking to return to Congress nearly 20 years after leaving office. Read more →
  • 🧑‍🤝‍🧑 Like father, like son? New York Magazine looks at whether New Jersey Democratic Rep. Robert Menendez can survive a primary challenge while his father faces political and legal trouble. Read more →
  • 💰 Meet the man who bailed out Trump: The California-based billionaire who secured Trump’s appeal bond has made a successful career out of lending to those who couldn’t secure loans elsewhere, but he’s also drawn scrutiny from regulators. Read more →

That’s all from The Politics Desk for now. If you have feedback — likes or dislikes — email us at politicsnewsletter@nbcuni.com

And if you’re a fan, please share with everyone and anyone. They can sign up here.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *