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Former CNN Analyst Admits Network’s Debate Is Rigged for Biden

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With the first presidential debate just about two weeks away, the 90-minute showdown in Atlanta on June 27 is poised to be a pivotal event in this year’s campaign schedule. President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump will meet for the first time since their contentious debate in October 2020. Each candidate will have a two-minute slot to respond to questions, followed by one minute to counter and reply.

On Monday, former CNN political analyst Chris Cillizza made headlines by suggesting that the rules of his former network’s upcoming presidential debate favor Biden over Trump. “Rule number one: the mics for each candidate will be muted when it is not their turn to talk,” Cillizza explained.

“There’s a part of me that’s like, ‘I don’t love this because it’s a debate,’” Cillizza noted. “The most memorable and important parts of debates I’ve seen in primaries and general elections almost always come in unscripted moments. It clearly benefits Biden because if you go back and look at the debates they had in 2020 between Biden and Trump, Trump just talks and talks and talks and talks. And that’s true in 2016 too; he just, over and over and over again, just talks. He interrupts, he bullies.”

Cillizza elaborated, “I do think it helps Biden because I think Trump just tries to get you off your pace, off your rhythm, off your game, right? Just by talking and talking and talking. So that’s rule one, benefit Biden one. Okay, there will be two commercial breaks. So this is different.”

Both Trump and Biden will see red lights indicating they have five seconds remaining, which will flash solid red when their time is up. Additionally, each candidate’s microphone will be silenced when it is the other’s turn to speak, according to The New York Times. Since their last debate, the former president has described Biden as the worst in the history of the United States. During their initial meeting four years ago, Trump dominated the conversation. In response, Biden reprimanded him, asking, “Will you keep quiet?”

CNN announced this weekend that the debate, which will be hosted by CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash in Atlanta on June 27, will mark the first in-person showdown of the 2024 campaign between President Joe Biden and his predecessor, former President Donald Trump. Both candidates have accepted the network’s invitation and agreed to the rules and format of the debate, as outlined in letters sent to the campaigns by the network in May.

The 90-minute debate will include two commercial breaks, and campaign staff may not interact with their candidate during that time. Both candidates agreed to appear at uniform podiums, and their podium positions will be determined by a coin flip.

Muted Microphones and Debate Dynamics

Microphones will be muted throughout the debate except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak. While no props or pre-written notes will be allowed on the stage, candidates will be given a pen, a pad of paper, and a bottle of water.

Some aspects of the debate, including the absence of a studio audience, will be a departure from previous debates. However, the moderators “will use all tools at their disposal to enforce timing and ensure a civilized discussion,” according to the network.

As the debate approaches, the discussion around its format and rules continues to generate controversy. Cillizza’s comments have fueled a broader debate about the fairness and integrity of the event. With both candidates prepared to take the stage under these new conditions, the upcoming debate promises to be a significant moment in the 2024 presidential campaign.

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Democrats Block SAVE Act in Senate, Allowing Potential for Illegal Immigrant Voting

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Senate Democrats have thwarted the passage of the SAVE Act, a pivotal bill aimed at bolstering the integrity of federal elections by mandating proof of citizenship for voting eligibility. This move follows the House’s approval of the bill with a narrow vote of 221-198, where almost all Democrats opposed the measure.

The SAVE Act seeks to amend the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 to enforce stricter voter registration standards. Specifically, it proposes that voters must furnish documentary evidence of U.S. citizenship to participate in federal elections, diverging from current regulations that only require such proof for state and local elections.

Senator Mike Lee, commending Representative Chip Roy for the bill’s passage, emphasized the necessity for Senate action, asserting, “Federal elections are only for U.S. citizens.”

However, despite efforts to expedite the bill in the Senate, Democrats raised objections, preventing its immediate passage. Senator Lee expressed frustration over the blockage, highlighting the potential consequences: “It’ll stop noncitizens from voting.”

In a statement on the Senate floor, Senator Lee voiced deep concerns, citing a recent study revealing significant opportunities for illegal voting by noncitizens. The study indicated that between 10% to 27% of noncitizens are registered to vote, with 5% to 13% actually participating in presidential elections.

Instances of voter fraud, including noncitizens illegally registered to vote, have been documented across the country. Reports have surfaced of unsolicited voter registration forms sent to noncitizens and inadequate checks during driver’s license issuance, contributing to vulnerabilities in the electoral system.

A video shared by Mike Howell, Executive Director of the Heritage Oversight Project, in collaboration with Muckraker.com, further underscored concerns. The video exposed instances of illegal aliens admitting to voter registration in North Carolina, emphasizing the need to safeguard American elections from foreign influence.

The SAVE Act’s blockade in the Senate has ignited a contentious debate over electoral integrity and the role of citizenship in voting rights. As the legislative battle continues, the future of federal voting regulations remains uncertain, with implications for the upcoming 2024 elections.

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Wisconsin Supreme Court Reinstates Unstaffed Drop Boxes Ahead of 2024 Election

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In a significant ruling on July 5, the Wisconsin Supreme Court decided to reinstate the use of unstaffed drop boxes for absentee ballots, reversing the prohibition that had been in effect since 2022. The court’s 4–3 decision marks a pivotal change in Wisconsin’s election procedures ahead of the 2024 elections.

In 2022, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that state law did not allow for absentee drop boxes to be placed anywhere other than in election clerk offices. This decision effectively banned the use of unmanned drop boxes, which had been widely utilized in previous elections to facilitate absentee voting.

The reversal of the 2022 ruling was influenced by a change in the court’s composition. A new justice was elected in 2023, which led to a re-evaluation of the previous decision. During the arguments in May, Justice Jill Karofsky questioned the validity of the 2022 ruling, suggesting that it may have been a mistake. “What if we just got it wrong? What if we made a mistake? Are we now supposed to just perpetuate that mistake into the future?” Karofsky asked during the proceedings.

The court heard arguments three months before the August 13 primary and six months ahead of the November presidential election. Attorneys representing Republican backers of the 2022 ruling contended that there had been no changes in the facts or the law to justify overturning a decision that was less than two years old. Misha Tseytlin, at torney for the Republican-controlled Legislature, argued that overturning the ruling could lead to future instability, as the court might have to revisit the issue whenever its composition changes.

However, Justice Karofsky countered this by pointing out the potential flaws in the 2022 decision, questioning whether the court should continue to uphold a ruling that was “egregiously wrong from the start” with “exceptionally weak” reasoning and damaging consequences.

Democrats and voting rights advocates argued that the 2022 ruling misinterpreted the law by concluding that absentee ballots could only be returned to a clerk’s office and not to a drop box controlled by the clerk. David Fox, attorney for the groups challenging the prohibition, described the current law as unworkable and unclear about where ballots can be returned.

Several justices expressed concerns about revisiting the previous ruling, with Justice Rebecca Bradley cautioning against the court acting as a “super Legislature” and giving municipal clerks excessive discretion in conducting elections.

The case was brought by voter mobilization group Priorities USA and the Wisconsin Alliance for Retired Voters. Governor Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Elections Commission, which oversees the state’s elections, supported the use of drop boxes. Election officials from four counties, including the state’s two largest, also filed briefs in support of overturning the prohibition, arguing that drop boxes had been used securely for decades.

The plaintiffs’ attorneys highlighted the practical impact of the 2022 ruling, noting that over 1,600 absentee ballots arrived late and were not counted in the 2022 election when drop boxes were not in use. By contrast, in the 2020 election, when drop boxes were available, only 689 ballots arrived after Election Day, despite a significantly higher number of absentee voters.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision to reinstate unstaffed drop boxes is a crucial development in the state’s election laws, potentially increasing accessibility and convenience for absentee voters. As the 2024 elections approach, this ruling may have significant implications for voter turnout and the administration of elections in Wisconsin.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Elon Musk Backs Voter Bill Aimed at Providing Proof of U.S. Citizenship to Vote, Labels Opponents as “Traitors”

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Elon Musk recently voiced strong support for the SAVE Act, a bill proposed by House Speaker Mike Johnson aimed at ensuring only U.S. citizens can vote in federal elections. The Safeguard American Voter Eligibility (SAVE) Act seeks to amend the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) by mandating documentary proof of U.S. citizenship for voter registration in federal elections.

The bill outlines several key measures:

  • State election officials must verify citizenship before providing voter registration forms.
  • Individuals must provide proof of citizenship to register to vote in federal elections.
  • States can accept various documents to make it easier for citizens to register.
  • States will have access to federal agency databases to remove non-citizens from voter rolls.
  • The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is directed to determine whether to initiate removal proceedings if a non-citizen is identified as registered to vote.
  • DHS must notify state election officials when individuals are naturalized to ensure they can exercise their voting rights.

Supporters, including Musk, argue that these measures are necessary to protect the integrity of U.S. elections by preventing non-citizens from voting. Critics of the bill claim it could disenfranchise eligible voters by imposing additional hurdles to the registration process.

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