U.S. ELECTION WRAP: Orlando Attack Rewrites Campaign Script

How Will the Orlando Massacre Affect Trump-Clinton Race?

Watershed moments occur in every presidential campaign -- unanticipated incidents, often tragedies -- that demand a candidate response and force voters to consider how White House aspirants would respond in the Oval Office to such critical moments.

Orlando is such a moment. The weekend attack at a gay nightclub in the city is most lethal shooting in U.S. history. Orlando changes -- at least for now and perhaps longer term -- the presidential campaign’s tone and tenor, providing a window to how the next president will respond in such crises.


Donald Trump, in what his campaign billed as a “major” speech on terrorism, faulted lax screening of immigrants, saying that policy allowed the shooter’s family to come to this country, and vowed to halt immigration from areas with a proven history of terrorism, Bloomberg’s Jennifer Jacobs and Kevin Cirilli report

  • Trump, at the start of his speech in Manchester, N.H., said the Orlando shooter was “born an Afghan of Afghan parents”
  • NOTE: Omar Mateen, who died in police shoot-out, was a U.S. citizen by birth; he was born in N.Y. to parents from Afghanistan
  • NOTE: His spoken remarks differ from prepared text, in which Trump was to say killer “was born to Afghan parents who immigrated to the United States,” then follow it by saying the “only reason the killer was in America in the first place was because we allowed his family to come here"; link to Trump’s prepared remarks

Hillary Clinton, in Cleveland, cautioned that scapegoating Muslims or weakening U.S. alliances will only make it easier for radical jihadists recruit followers and spread terror, Bloomberg’s Margaret Talev reports

  • Said anti-Muslim rhetoric and threats to ban Muslim immigrants -- a key Trump plank -- hurt ‘‘the vast majority of Muslims who love freedom and hate terror”
  • Clinton also said the U.S. should restrict the availability of military-style weapons


Both candidates scrapped their original plans for campaign events on Monday to focus on their responses to the terrorist attack in Orlando

President Obama’s Wednesday trip to Wis. for his first campaign appearance with Clinton also was postponed; make-up date not yet planned

Trump postponed a rally in Portsmouth, N.H.

  • His speech at St. Anselm College in Manchester had days ago been billed as one which would detail his case against both of the Clintons -- Hillary and Bill


National polls continue to show a close election, with Clinton having an edge. A pair of recent state polls, though, suggest the potential for a blowout by Clinton

  • Guardian/SurveyUSA national poll puts Clinton at 39% to Trump’s 36%; Libertarian Gary Johnson at 6%, Green Party’s Jill Stein at 4%

UT: Trump, Clinton tied at 35% among state’s voters in Salt Lake Tribune poll, Johnson gets 13% support

  • NOTE: Utah was most Republican state in 2012 election; Mitt Romney carried it by 49 ppts
  • Big jump for Johnson, who got 1.2% in 2012 election

KS: Zogby survey for Kansas Health Foundation showed Clinton at 43%, Trump at 36%, 21% undecided in the state: Lawrence Journal-World

  • Romney won Kansas by 22 ppts in 2012


Every House and Senate lawmaker will be forced on the record on gun- and terror-related votes in the coming weeks. One of the first may come in the Senate, where Democrats said they’d offer a measure that would prevent people on the U.S. terror watch list from purchasing guns and explosives.

FL-SEN: Republican Sen. Marco Rubio told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt he’s been “deeply impacted” by the mass shooting in Orlando but hasn’t “thought about it from a political perspective”

  • Rubio, pressured by GOP leaders to reverse decision to leave Senate at year’s end, said running for re-election is “not part of our plan as a family”
  • Noted, as he has before, that a friend, Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, is seeking the seat
  • Fla. candidate filing deadline is June 24

Rep. Patrick Murphy, seeking the Democratic nomination for Rubio’s seat in Aug. 30 primary, says he’s eager to query GOP colleagues on whether they will back “reasonable” gun-control legislation in wake of Orlando attack

  • “If history repeats itself here, then I doubt the Republicans will bring anything up, and I think that’s shameful”
  • Link to interview with Murphy from Bloomberg’s Kim Chipman

KY-SEN: Super-PAC aiding GOP Sen. Rand Paul in TV ad said Hillary Clinton and Democrat Jim Gray are “the same kind of liberal, big-government, coal-hating politicians”

  • Ad refers to “Crooked Hillary,” borrowing phrase from Trump, and shows footage of Clinton saying in March that “we are going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business”
  • Gray last month won Democratic nomination to oppose Paul, who’s seeking second term after losing bid for Republican presidential nomination

FL-23: Vice President Joe Biden canceled on traveling to Miami area for fundraiser for Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz in hours after Orlando shooting

NV-03: GOP businessman/lawyer Danny Tarkanian gave $40k to his campaign June 11, according to FEC filing

  • Tarkanian’s opponents in tomorrow’s primary include state Sen. Michael Roberson, state Rep. Michele Fiore
  • Ending Spending Inc., a 501c4 group that promotes fiscal restraint and doesn’t disclose donors, has spent more than $1.6m opposing Tarkanian and supporting Roberson
  • GOP Rep. Joe Heck giving up seat to run for Senate

NY-01: Democrat Anna Throne-Holst in TV ad said Trump is “a racist, a sexist, and represents everything I’ve fought against in my life”

  • Throne-Holst, former Southampton town supervisor, responded to ad from June 28 primary opponent Dave Calone that sought to link her to the GOP presidential candidate
  • District on eastern end of Long Island held by Republican Lee Zeldin

NY-13: Super-PAC aiding Democratic state Sen. Adriano Espaillat will spend more than $100,000 through the primary, New York Times reported

  • Espaillat, who lost to Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel in 2012 and 2014 primaries, among nine Democrats seeking party nomination for seat Rangel is giving up
  • District includes parts of northern Manhattan and the Bronx, is overwhelmingly Democratic

NY-22: Defending Main Street Super-PAC spent $75,000 to produce/air TV ad promoting businessman Steve Wells, according to FEC filing

  • Spot says “it’s time we send a conservative businessman to fix Washington and make America great again”
  • Group is aligned with Republican Main Street Partnership, which says it believes in “governing in a thoughtful and pragmatic manner”
  • Wells, Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney, former county legislator George Phillips held radio debate today
  • Republican Rep. Richard Hanna isn’t seeking re-election

OK-01: Republican Tom Atkinson says in TV ad he’ll fight for balanced-budget constitutional amendment and 4% cut in federal spending, will refuse congressional pension/pay raises

  • Atkinson, energy executive and former federal prosecutor, challenging Rep. Jim Bridenstine in June 28 primary in Tulsa-area district

VA-02: Republican Scott Taylor aired TV ad emphasizing his background as state representative, Navy SEAL and Iraq War veteran while portraying Republican Rep. Randy Forbes as carpetbagger

  • Forbes seeking VA-02 after his adjacent VA-04 district absorbed more Democrats in court-imposed redistricting
  • Tomorrow’s primary also includes lawyer Pat Cardwell; winner favored to succeed retiring GOP Rep. Scott Rigell

—With assistance from Linly Lin.

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