NEWS AND OPINION:
This will surely be the mother of all rallies.
It’s celebration time for President Trump‘s loyal followers around the nation, who vow to personally witness Mr. Trump’s formal declaration that he’s running for reelection Tuesday. The announcement event itself is a jumbo, all-day affair. Mr. Trump’s appearance will be preceded by “45 Fest,” an outdoor festival on the grounds of the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida — complete with jumbotrons, entertainment and enthusiasm.
People began lining up for a spot at 2:30 a.m. Monday — some 40 hours before the event is set to begin.
“It’s going to be pretty intense. The electricity is going to be high. It’s time for America to get back on its feet and be made better than it’s ever been before,” Gary Beck — a Florida resident and the very first person in line — told Orlando.com.
“We’ll have delicious food, live music, big screens, and a great time for all of our guests. Inside and out, the excitement at this Trump rally will be something to remember as President Trump makes history,” says Michael Glassner, CEO of Donald J. Trump for President.
The president himself revealed many people had requested tickets to the free rally.
“Looks to be setting records. We are building large movie screens outside to take care of everybody. Over 100,000 requests. Our Country is doing great, far beyond what the haters & losers thought possible — and it will only get better!” the president tweeted on Monday.
The response within the arena — which seats 20,000 — could be on rock star level. At 8 p.m. EDT, Mr. Trump will be joined on stage inside the arena by first lady Melania Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and second lady Karen Pence.
With the help of local and regional Republican Party groups, or simply on their own initiative, Trump fans in every state have organized hundreds of neighborhood watch parties, events normally reserved for elections and major sports events. This national Trump cheer may even drown out the news media. Maybe.
“The mainstream media hacks will have a difficult time dismissing the crowd size with their typical condescension and disdain for all things Middle America,” predicts PJ Media contributor Stephen Kruiser.
MEDIA VS. TRUMP: AN UPDATE
“Point of fact: President Trump hasn’t tried to destroy the free press; he has tried to teach it some manners. Maybe he isn’t the person best positioned to do so, but there is no doubt that most Americans share his low regard for journalism in general, and TV journalism in particular,” writes Frank Miele, a columnist for Real Clear Politics.
“There is also no doubt that Trump has been more accessible to the press than any president in my lifetime. He’s never met a scrum of reporters that didn’t have the same effect on him that catnip has on a kitty. If reporters don’t enjoy the rambunctious claws and teeth of the president, they should stop feeding him,” advises Mr. Miele, who is also the author of “The Media Matrix: What if Everything You Know is Fake?”
TRIGGERED: PANIC ATTACK POLITICS
A noteworthy book arrives Tuesday: “Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump” by Robby Soave. The election of President Trump was indeed a shock to Democrats who have not come to terms with that victory. A certain sector, however, has had an extreme reaction.
“For young progressive activists, the election wasn’t just a surprise or disappointment: it was a declaration of war, an act of outright violence, a hate crime,” Mr. Soave writes, noting that one young woman compared the election to the 9/11 attacks.
“It was traumatizing. Every time I realized that someone I knew voted for Trump, it was a sort of personal attack, or at least it felt that way,” another told the author, who is associate editor of Reason.com.
Mr. Soave also cites trends which suggest this new crop of radicals is uncomfortable — even “militantly opposed” — to free speech.
“Some activists simply reject the notion that people who do not share their views should be given rights at all,” writes Mr. Soave, also noting that these activists get upset and protective of one another if speech proves upsetting.
“In modern parlance, snowflakes are easily triggered. Snowflakes think offensive speech is violence. Snowflakes want safe spaces,” the author explains.
CITY OF 10,000 SPIES
Washington, D.C. is spy city, according to one analyst.
There are “more than 10,000 spies in Washington,” says J.J. Green, national security analyst for WTOP, an all-news radio station in the nation’s capital, quoting a figure from the International Spy Museum.
“While there may be some quibbling about the actual numbers, the FBI agrees with the premise,” Mr. Green writes.
“It’s unprecedented — the threat from our foreign adversaries, specifically China on the economic espionage and the espionage front,” Brian Dugan — assistant special agent in charge for counterintelligence with the FBI’s Washington Field Office — told Mr. Green.
“A spy is nondescript. A spy is going to be someone that’s going to be a student in school, a visiting professor, your neighbor. It could be a colleague or someone that shares the soccer field with you,” Mr. Dugan noted.
The city plays host to over 175 foreign embassies, residences, chanceries and diplomatic missions. There are “tens of thousands” of international students plus business people with links to foreign intelligence.
“The training of highly skilled spies, especially those who work in Washington, makes them virtually invisible to ordinary, unsuspecting people. Washington, according to current and former U.S. intelligence sources, is normally the place where most countries send their best spies,” Mr. Green says.
POLL DU JOUR
• 81% of Republican voters are “satisfied” that President Trump is the only candidate running for the 2020 Republican presidential nomination; 88% of Trump voters, 79% of independents, 80% of female GOP voters and 81% of GOP male voters agree.
• 19% “wish there were more choices”; 12% of Trump voters, 21% of independents, 20% of women and 19% of men agree.
• 80% of Democratic voters are “satisfied” with the candidates now running for the 2020 Democratic nomination for president; 86% of those who voted for Hillary Clinton, 75% of independents, 81% of female Democratic voters and 79% of male Democratic voters agree.
• 20% “wish there were more choices”; 14% of those who voted for Mrs. Clinton, 25% of independents, 19% of female voters and 21% of male voters agree.
Source: An Economist/YouGov poll of 1,107 registered U.S. voters who plan to vote in the 2020 presidential primary or caucus, conducted June 9-11.
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