TIME 2016 Election

Donald Trump Widely Disliked Among Latinos, New Poll Shows

Trump has claimed in the past to have a broad support in the Latino community

A large majority of Latinos view Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump negatively, according to a new poll, and more than half believe his recent comments about Mexican immigrants were racist and inappropriate.

Trump, who is leading the Republican field in polls ahead of the first debate this week, has drawn both headlines and scorn for his incendiary comments about Mexicans and immigrants, saying during his announcement speech in June that Mexico is “sending people that have lots of problems… They are bringing crime. They’re rapists.”

A survey of 250 Latinos found that 75% view the television star and real estate mogul unfavorably, and 61% say their view of him is “very negative,” according to the NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Telemundo poll results. More than half, or 55% of Latinos, said his remarks about Mexicans are “insulting and racist and have no place in a campaign for president.”

Trump has claimed in the past to have a broad support in the Latino community.

“I think I’ll win the Hispanic vote,” Trump said during a campaign stop near the Mexican border in late July. “Over the years, thousands and thousands of Hispanics have worked for me and now work for me and the relationship is very good.”

Of those surveyed, 69% said Trump is hurting the Republican Party’s image, a concern that many in the GOP’s leadership share.

TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: Aug. 3

Mark Wilson—Getty Images The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

President Obama is unveiling a new climate change plan to limit power plant emissions today that is already becoming the subject of controversy on the 2016 campaign trail. Hillary Clinton quickly endorsed the rule, as Republicans lined up to oppose it. In Dana Point, California, this weekend, five GOP presidential contenders gathered to pitch themselves to the Koch Brothers’ political network, including hundreds of well-heeled donors. And though he wasn’t invited, GOP front-runner Donald Trump still loomed large over the event, as candidates struggle with his rise in the polls.

In advance of this week’s GOP debate, 14 candidates will take questions tonight at a New Hampshire Union Leader Forum. A series of new polls released in the next 34 hours will determine who makes the cut in Cleveland on Thursday, as Republican candidates complete a blitz of Fox News and other nationwide media in hopes of getting their poll numbers up.

And amid reports he is now leaning toward running, aides said Vice President Joe Biden is still considering a 2016 bid. But a decision is not expected for more than a month and the VP has personally sent few signals either way about his intentions. Should he get in, he would instantly claim about 15 percent of the Democratic vote, according to recent polling, but his path to topple Clinton remains unknown.

Here are your must-reads:

Uninvited Donald Trump Crashes Koch Retreat in Spirit
His shadow looms large over donor retreat, TIME’s Philip Elliott reports

The Left’s Quest to Create Hundreds of Elizabeth Warrens
TIME’s Sam Frizell reports on progressives eyeing down-ticket races

As Joe Biden Resumes Official Work, So Does Talk About a 2016 Run
No decisions yet [Los Angeles Times]

Obama’s New Climate-Change Regulations to Alter, Challenge Industry
Already a divisive 2016 issue [Wall Street Journal]

Sound Off

“If people don’t like it, that’s just tough luck.” — Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on his record fundraising haul

“Quite a few members of this field have attacked Donald Trump. A lot of folks in the media have asked me ‘Ted Cruz, will you do the same?’ I have been glad to praise Donald Trump for speaking out boldly and brashly and for focusing on illegal immigration.” — Texas Sen. Ted Cruz

Bits and Bites

Ted Cruz Says Climate-Change Fears Falsified by Scientists and Politicians [TIME]

Hillary Clinton Praises Mother in First TV Ads of 2016 [TIME]

Iowans to Chris Christie: Take It to Donald Trump [Des Moines Register]

Scott Walker Still Isn’t Sure If President Obama Is Christian [TIME]

Hillary Clinton Releases Eight Years of Tax Returns [TIME]

Jeb Bush’s Camp Sees an Upside to Donald Trump’s Surge in the G.O.P. [New York Times]

Doctor: Hillary Clinton In ‘Excellent’ Physical Condition [TIME]

Sen. Graham Moved Up in Air Force Reserve Ranks Despite Light Duties [Washington Post]

Bush Rolls Out Six-PointPplan to Address Border Security, Illegal Immigration [WMUR]

Obama Had a $3 Golf Bet with House Democrats. Guess Who Won. [Washington Post]

RNC Set to Vote on Anti-Gay Resolutions at Summer Meeting [Washington Blade]

John McCain in New Hampshire: ‘Lindsey Graham, He’s My Man!’ [Washington Post]

TIME Donald Trump

Uninvited Donald Trump Crashes Koch Retreat in Spirit

The Donald was not invited. That doesn't mean he wasn't still a player at ultra-donor summit.

The Republican Party’s continuing struggle to deal with the political rise of Donald Trump to the top of presidential polls played out this weekend in front of 450 of the top conservative donors in the country.

With varying degrees of trepidation and admiration, Trump’s rivals for the 2016 Republican nomination faced questions about a palatable frustration within the electorate. Donors and reporters both asked: How can the party tap into that passion without necessarily putting Trump on the ballot? How does the party keep the Trump supporters involved if he flames out, as expected? And have Trump’s remarks on immigration undone the work these donors support through the political network supported by billionaires Charles and David Koch?

None of the answers are clear and it might take months for Trump’s impact on the race to be fully appreciated. His rivals, however, do not have that luxury of time. Trump is expected to be on the debate stage Thursday when the contenders meet for the campaign’s first date.

The answers from the candidates offer a hint at how the GOP coalition views Trump’s potency.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz heaped praise on his rival for the GOP nomination. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker credited the real estate mogul and reality star with tapping into the frustration many conservatives have with Republican leaders in Washington. Sen. Marco Rubio lent his voice to those saying Trump’s frustrations are not imagined.

At the same time, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina agreed that Americans were frustrated, but added that they are also wise enough to consider Trump’s challenges in winning a national election. And former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Trump’s most credible rival for GOP frontrunner, said fixing immigration’s system requires more than incendiary speeches.

“There are people running for president—one particularly—that is tapping into people’s anger. I get the anger. But we need a constructive plan,” Bush said on Sunday. Left unsaid was the fact that Trump used Bush’s Mexican-American wife as a reason to vote against him.

Republicans have tried to address Trump and his improbably position atop the field in fits and starts. Trump roared into the race with an announcement speech that called immigrants in the country illegally rapists and criminals. He has shown no sign of softening his blunt broadsides against demographics, his rivals and Washington. That has led to plenty of handwringing, especially among establishment-minded conservatives who are aghast that the loud-mouthed businessman is deflating the prospects of more traditional candidates.

Criticizing Trump is seldom a painless affair. Trump often returns political fire with a disproportionate volley, and such exchanges only buoy his hopes among anti-establishment crowds.

As five rivals met with Charles and David Koch at a luxury hotel in Dana Point, California, Trump was on Twitter: “I wish good luck to all of the Republican candidates that traveled to California to beg for money etc. from the Koch Brothers. Puppets?”

Cruz was forgiving. “Quite a few members of this field have attacked Donald Trump,” Cruz said. “I have been glad to praise Donald Trump.” Cruz is hoping that some of Trump’s supporters now will turn into Cruz supporters down the road. It’s why Cruz has adopted some of Trump’s rabble-rousing. “If you think things are going great in Washington … I ain’t your guy,” he told Koch-backing donors.

Asked about Trump, who has criticized Walker’s tenure in Wisconsin as a disaster, tried to avoid any further engagement with the New Yorker. “It’s not just about Mr. Trump,” Walker said Saturday. Instead, he tried to cast Trump’s rise as a symptom of Americans’ frustration with Washington writ large.

Rubio, too, pointed to discontent among voters. “Clearly, he has hit on a theme people are frustrated by,” Rubio said Sunday when asked about Trump. “I don’t think you should underestimate how frustrated people are.”

For her part, Fiorina was circumspect. “It’s not just our ideas that matter … it is our tone,” she said Saturday. “We must have a nominee who is both a fighter and empathetic. Strong, and yet evidences humility. We can’t be judgmental, we can’t be vitriolic and we can’t be angry.”

The candidates were interviewed at the ritzy St. Regis resort in Orange County by Politico’s Mike Allen. The conversations were part of a three-day summit organized by Freedom Partners, a non-profit that effectively works as a fundraising clearinghouse for conservative-minded organizations backed by billionaires Charles and David Koch. The brothers mingled with donors, who each paid at least $100,000 to attend the private meetings.

For the first time, reporters were invited onto the property to attend selected sessions, including interviews with 2016 hopefuls. Other sessions touched on criminal justice reform, the Chilean economy and mobilizing conservatives.

But it was Trump who lingered over the events. “He’s clearly struck a chord,” said Marc Short, the president of the group that coordinates the Koch-backed groups’ activities and funding. One of the groups in that network is the LIBRE Initiative, which reaches out to Hispanic voters by helping some immigrants pass driving tests and in other places assists them navigate social services. Many of LIBRE’s projects help the very people Trump has demonized to fuel his rise: immigrants in the country illegally.


The Left’s Quest to Create Hundreds of Elizabeth Warrens

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen Delivers Semiannual Report On The Economy To The Senate Banking Committee
Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, listens to Janet Yellen, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, during her semiannual report on the economy to the Senate Banking Committee in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, July 16, 2015.

“Elizabeth—she’s here?”

The thumbs up came from the back of the meeting room, and two hundred future Sen. Elizabeth Warrens stood up and waited for their prototype to enter. Spindly and with a bouncy step, the Massachusetts senator strode rapidly into the room and was waylaid by a friendly sea of imperfect facsimiles calling for selfies. “What a way to start the morning!” Warren said at last, breathless at the podium.

Warren was stopping by a conference on Thursday just a 10-minute walk away from the Capitol building in Washington DC, where the goal was unabashedly to bolster the Warren brand of the Democratic party. In the belly of the swank Washington Court Hotel—also the host of a recent events for steel wire producers and the beef industry—progressive candidates for municipal and state office across the country had gathered for a four-day affair to create a surge of Democratic candidates in municipal and state elections, and build a movement of rookie Warrens.

The conference, organized by the advocacy group Progressive Change Campaign Committee, was intended to train candidates and activists from states far flung as Wisconsin and Louisiana to run for office and eventually shape national policy. TIME was one of the only publications granted access to the meeting.

Much of the focus was on the nuts and bolts of effective campaigning and fundraising. Questions flew: Do candidates need to fundraise within their own district? How much time should candidates spend on fundraising calls? How do you best target voters during get-out-the-vote efforts? Should candidates’ events have red wine, or are cookies enough? The PCCC offered candidates who attended back-end internet tools replete with website templates, and readymade email blasters and event managers.

And Warren was the star attraction. “You are the progressive bench, and we need a bench,” Warren told them. Dozens of attendees wore identical blue shirts that said, I’m from the Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic party. “Elizabeth Warren is the North Star,” said Adam Green, co-founder of the PCCC. And the enthusiasm for Warren has spilled over all across the left: “I want to clone Elizabeth Warren into every candidate,” said Tefere Gebre the executive vice president of the AFL-CIO, in an interview with TIME two weeks ago.

In the Washington hotel, building an army of Warrens to challenge establishment-backed Democrats was exactly the point. “Yes, this is about building campaigns and winning office, but this is also about building a movement,” Warren said during her keynote on Thursday. “You are the living spark of the progressive movement.” It was a sentiment made clear by the conference organizers. “How do we elect 300 more Elizabeth Warrens?” said Stephanie Taylor, the co-founder of the PCCC who dreamt up the conference. “This training is part of it: finding them and giving them the tools to run great campaigns.”

Movement-building with Warren in the lead is in part about catching up to conservatives. Republicans can boast of presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, Rush Limbaugh and a formidable coalition of right-wing legislators threatening to unseat their house speaker. Meanwhile the left has a few big-city mayors, a struggling cable network (MSNBC), handful of legislators (Sherrod Brown, Keith Ellison) and a upstart presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, who counts Eugene V. Debs and the nation of Denmark among his biggest influences. And Warren, the progressive nonpareil, has refused to run for the White House.

Anger over the Obama years is a key motivator for conservatives. The stimulant on the left is made of a milder sauce, namely, disappointment over the Obama years, and many progressive ideals have faltered in Congress and on their way to the White House.

Republicans have taken notice of Warrens influence over Democrats. While the activists met in Washington, her name came up on the Republican campaign trail in Cedar Falls, Iowa. “The fact is the Democratic Party has a problem,” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said. “Their problem is that Elizabeth Warren is taking over that party.”

“They’re all running to be just like Elizabeth Warren,” he added, saying that Hillary Clinton has borrowed from Warren’s playbook on the campaign trail.

Though Warren was only present for the first hour of the four-day training session, her name came up again and again. When she ran for Senate in 2012, Warren liked to make fundraising calls from her kitchen at home while boiling a pot of tea and wearing a headset, an alumna of Warren’s fundraising team, Sarah Badawi, told trainees. Joel Silberman, a speech trainer, said in a session that when he consulted Warren before a Massachusetts state convention speech, he told Warren a trick to cure nerves: count the number of steps to the podium.

Taylor and Green of the PCCC once sat on Warren’s front porch and shared lemonade and iced tea to convince her to first run for Senate, Warren noted during her address. The former director of research for Warren’s senatorial campaign, Peter Jones led a class on opposition research. (A quick Google search on Warren’s defeated opponent for Senate, Scott Brown, shows him shirtless in photos hawking diet pills, a fact that Warren recently noted in a speech.)

Most of those hoping to follow Warren’s lead at the conference don’t look anything like her or share her Ivy League background. There was the black state senator who represents Ferguson, an Indian-American candidate for Congress from a Detroit suburb, and as many pairs of sneakers as suits. Union organizers, mothers, climate activists, feminists and campaign staffers were in Washington from Vermont and Georgia.

“You are a part of a global re-owning of a populist, progressive vision of America,” said Zephyr Teachout, chief executive of the Mayday PAC which aims to get money out of politics.

Many at the conference argued local victories could sway their states, and ultimately, Congress. Over a lunch of ravioli and tagliatelli with lemon sauce and iced tea, two attendees from Rhode Island debated the merits of the conference. “The more states have something like paid leave, and it’s successful, the more likely we’ll be able to get Congress to move it forward,” Shandi Hanna, an activist at the Women’s Fund of Rhode Island. “We need to infiltrate the system and change it.”

“You look around this room people—the people I’ve met makes me realize the country is moving in a good direction,” said Margaux Morisseau, a candidate for Rhode Island state Senate.

So far, the left has been unable to create the kind of movement that caught fire on the right after President Obama’s election. But in some ways, things have changed in recent years. Cities and states like California and Rhode Island are requiring businesses to provide paid family leave; activists in New York, Los Angeles and Seattle have with mixed success pushed for a $15-minium wage; Bernie Sanders has attracted crowds of 10,000 and more in purple and red states like Wisconsin and Arizona. To progressives, those are signs of shifting winds. “People will start to realize there’s a change happening from underneath. They’ll either have to evolve or die,” said Chris Larson, a state senator in Wisconsin.

Some date the recent wave in progressive activism back to Howard Dean’s 2004 campaign. A left-backed candidate, Dean’s loss in the primary spawned Democracy for America, a progressive PAC. The past five years has seen a slow increase in organizational support for progressive Democrats. DFA, MoveOn.org, Progressive Majority also aim to train progressive candidates for office.

It’s Warren’s message that has helped motivate them in recent years, and attendees repeatedly mentioned Warren’s name during the conference. “We can whine about this, we can whimper about this, or we can fight back,” Warren said Thursday. “I’m fighting back!”

The goal, of course, is victory against Republicans, and against old-line Democrats in primary contests. If they win, it will come the way of conquerors of old: by conversion, or a rout.

“It’s our movement,” said CM! Winters Palacio, a Chicago librarian (with punctuation in her first name) who is running for City Council and says she is facing pushback from the moderate Democratic mayor, Rahm Emmanuel. “We will eat the elephant one bite at a time.”

TIME Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton Praises Mother In First TV Ads of 2016

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Stephen B. Morton—AP In this July 23, 2015 photo Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks at a campaign event in Columbia, S.C.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign will air the first two television ads of the Democratic primary race on Tuesday, as part of an effort to head off Republican attacks and present Clinton as a “tenacious fighter” for everyday Americans.

In a five-week ad buy worth $1 million each in Iowa and New Hampshire, Clinton will share her personal story, explaining how she drew inspiration mother’s life, and discuss her work in and out of government on behalf of children.

The two advertisements, which appear geared to building Clinton’s reputation as a politician who cares about regular voters, will air in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, Iowa’s biggest media markets, and statewide in New Hampshire.

“When I think about why I’m doing this I think about my mother Dorothy. She was abandoned by her parents at the age of eight, sent from Chicago to LA to live with grandparents who didn’t want her,” Clinton says in the first advertisement. “But people showed her kindness, gave her a chance.”

Accompanied by footage of mothers and their children, Clinton says say, “That’s why I’m doing this. That’s why I’ve always done this. For all the Dorothys.”

The second advertisement focuses on Clinton’s time after college, when she worked for the Children’s Defense Fund, a kids’ advocacy group, and then touts her work on school reform and health care. The ad then turns to Clinton’s time as senator from New York, when she “made sure the heroes and families of 9/11 got the care they needed,” according to a voiceover.

The ad buys fit in with a larger theme the campaign has sought to broadcast since she announced: that Clinton has long been a strong advocate for children and Americans, a trait she learned from her own mother’s difficult childhood.

The Clinton campaign had long planned to air television ads sometime in the late summer, a campaign official said. Republicans are amassing cash for large ad buys in the four early states, and Clinton’s campaign anticipates that much of it is intended to attack Clinton.

Clinton’s spots aim to define the Democratic frontrunner with a positive biographical message.

“We’re going to make sure everyone knows who Hillary Clinton really is — who she fights for and what has motivated her lifelong commitment to children and families,” campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement. “Since Day One, we’ve planned for a competitive primary with Hillary herself working to earn every vote and, ultimately, the nomination. This is the natural next step.”

According to a nationwide Quinnipiac poll released at the end of July, 52% of Americans believe Clinton does not care about their needs.

Clinton’s campaign hopes that when voters know the Democratic frontrunner’s personal story, much of which was deemphasized during her last run for president, her poll numbers will improve.

The campaign filmed the footage of Clinton speaking to the camera about her mother in the first advertisement in June, as part of a plan to show Clinton’s record.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, Clinton’s challenger for the Democratic nomination, has gained momentum in Iowa and New Hampshire but is still at least 10 points behind her in polls.

TIME ted cruz

Ted Cruz Says Climate-Change Fears Falsified by Scientists and Politicians

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz greets supporters at the Georgia Republican Convention in Athens, Ga. on May 15, 2015.
David Goldman—AP Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz greets supporters at the Georgia Republican Convention in Athens, Ga. on May 15, 2015.

Sen. Ted Cruz on Sunday said facts don’t support climate change, in a speech that described the notion as a front for power-hungry politicians who want to control Americans’ lives.

During an appearance before some of the most influential conservative donors in the country, the Texas Republican said there is no factual basis for scientists’ research that shows the planet is changing. The 2016 White House hopeful said none of the research is worth the paper it is printed on.

“If you look at satellite data for the last 18 years, there’s been zero recorded warming,” Cruz said in California’s Orange County. “The satellite says it ain’t happening.”

Instead, Cruz said, government researchers are reverse engineering data sets to falsify changes in the climate. “They’re cooking the books. They’re actually adjusting the numbers,” Cruz said. “Enron used to do their books the same way.”

Cruz said scientists four decades ago were studying “global cooling, a global ice age was coming,” and they were as wrong as those who now say the earth is warming.

“Senator, you’re not saying global warming isn’t real?” interrupted his interviewer, Politico’s Mike Allen.

“I’m saying that data and facts don’t support it,” Cruz said to applause from 450 donors to the political network organized by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch.

“Full on denial?” Allen replied, making sure he was understanding the first-term Senator.

Cruz was ready with his retort. “It is always disturbing to hear science use the language of theology. Deniers. Heretics. That’s not what sicence is supposed to be about. Science should follow the facts.”

Cruz then said the notion is being used to control the economy and energy industry in the hopes of combating of climate change. “To any power-greedy politician, this is the perfect theory. It can never, ever, ever be disproven,” Cruz said.

Science, however, does not back up Cruz’s position. Geochemist James Lawrence Powell, an adviser to Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, reviewed peer-reviewed science journals and found that only two articles rejected climate change during 2013. His sample size: 10,885 articles.

TIME jeb bush

Jeb Bush on His Campaign Cash: Tough Luck if Critics Don’t Like It

Jeb Bush
John Locher—AP Republican presidential candidate former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush speaks at the Maverick PAC conference in Las Vegas on July 17, 2015.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has no apologies for using a network of political committees to out-raise his rivals for the Republican presidential nomination.

“You are officially certified as the $120 million man,” Politico’s Mike Allen said to Bush during an on-stage interview at a summit of GOP mega-donors.

“What’s the question?” Bush deadpanned.

“How much is too much?” Allen pressed.

“I don’t know. But I think you might as well frontload it if you can. This is along haul. Are we supposed to just warm up and work your way into it? Am I missing something here?” Bush said.

Bush’s campaign raised $11.4 million and the Super PAC supporting him collected more than $103 million so far, according to finance filings. Another political committee backing Bush brought in almost $5.4 million. Of the $120 million the groups have collected, they have spent less than $14 million so far.

“Money helps. I’m playing by the rules of the game the way it’s laid out,” said Bush, who worked with the political committees before officially becoming a candidate. He also sent several of his former top advisers to outside groups to manage the unlimited cash machines. “If people don’t like it, that’s just tough luck,” he added.

Bush’s lack of concern over collecting large amounts of money was shared by the 450 mega-donors who were meeting this weekend at events organized by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch. Together, they plan to spend $889 million on non-profits, activism and politics before Election Day 2016.

TIME Environment

Obama to Unveil ‘Most Important Step’ Ever to Combat Climate Change

President hails new regulations as "the biggest, most important step" ever taken to combat climate change

The White House plans to unveil regulations on Monday to dramatically curtail greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and eventually revamp the country’s energy industry. The regulations, billed by the President Obama as “the biggest, most important step” ever taken to address climate change, play a key role in the President’s aim to make combatting climate change a priority of his final months in office.

The Environmental Protection Agency rules, finalized versions of 2012 and 2014 proposals, call for a 32% reduction in carbon emissions from power plants by 2030 from 2005 levels. The White House projects that the rules will drive increased investment in renewable energy, leading to 30% more clean energy generation by 2030 and a dramatic reduction in coal power.

“No matter who you are, where you live or what you care about, climate change is personal and it’s affecting you and your family today,” EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told reporters Sunday on a conference call.

The rule sets carbon emissions reductions standards for each state to meet based on the current makeup of the state’s energy sources. Under the regulation, each state will be allowed to determine how it meets those standards, whether by targeting specific plants or making changes across the board. The plan also includes an incentive program to provide federal funds for states to develop clean energy.

The plan has already been met with intense criticism from the oil and gas industry, including the promise of legal challenges. Republicans in Congress, as well as state governors, have taken up the mantle of challenging the rule saying that it would harm the economy. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sent letters to governors across the country in March providing the legal arguments to suggest that the federal government lacks the authority to mandate such reductions.

“This proposed regulation would have a negligible effect on global climate but a profoundly negative impact on countless American families already struggling,” McConnell wrote in a March op-ed in the Lexington Herald-Leader. “The regulation is unfair. It’s probably illegal.”

The White House and environmental advocates have argued that the rule would stimulate the economy and create tens of thousands of jobs. Asked whether the EPA has the legal authority to implement the rule, McCarthy said that the agency had considered the legal issues and the measure is “legally a very strong rule.”

Monday’s news is one of many expected announcements from the White House designed to elevate the issue of climate change in the U.S. The President will highlight the issue in his meeting with Pope Francis this fall and his travel to Alaskan Arctic, and has announced a number of new policies and partnerships. All told, the attention is meant to position the U.S. as a leader in fighting climate change in the lead up to a United Nations conference on climate change in December.

“This rule actually enhances in important ways our ability to achieve the international commitments that we have,” said Brian Deese on a conference call for journalists. “This rule gives us a strong foundation to keep pushing against our international commitment.”

MORE Here’s Where to Buy a House In the U.S. That Will Be Resilient to Climate Change

TIME 2016 Election

Charles Koch Says U.S. Can Bomb Its Way to $100,000 Salaries

Charles Koch
Bo Rader—Getty Images Charles Koch, head of Koch Industries.

Conservative billionaire Charles Koch is predicting average American incomes of $100,000 annually in roughly a decade if government is scaled back and regulations are scrapped.

One way to get there? Building and using more bombs, he jokingly told about 450 donors to the political network he backs.

“I think we can have growth rates in excess of 4%. When I’m talking about growth rates, I’m not talking about that GDP, which counts poison gas the same as it counts penicillin,” the 79-year-old industrialist said, veering off his prepared remarks. “What a monstrous measure this is. If we make more bombs, the GDP goes up — particularly if we explode them.”

His audience laughed, clearly getting the joke.

“Maybe we make more bombs,” he said, trailing off. “I’m just kidding. I won’t go there.”

Koch was making the broader point that economic growth compounds from year to year. A modest gain early pays greater dividends later. To that end, Koch is trying to make 4% a target for growth.

Koch is meeting with his allies in tony Orange County, Calif., for a three-day retreat. Participants in sessions ponied up $100,000 and most will shell out much more than that before the weekend is over. All told, Koch’s umbrella organization, Freedom Partners, plans to spend almost $900 million before the 2016 elections.

In addition to seminars on criminal justice, campus free speech and young voters’ habits, guests are also set to hear from five Republicans seeking their party’s presidential nomination.

TIME 2016 elections

Rubio: Iran Could Nuke California Within a Decade

Marco Rubio
Carolyn Kaster—AP Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.

Tehran could bomb "where we are sitting right now," Florida Republican said at Orange County retreat

Sen. Marco Rubio warned Sunday the shores of California are only a decade away from being darkened by a nuclear mushroom cloud from Iran.

Speaking to some of the most influential Republican donors in the country at an Orange County retreat organized by billionaires Charles and David Koch, the Florida Republican sounded the alarm that Iran proses a real and short-term threat to Americans at home. Before a crowd of 450 donors, Rubio said Americans need to realize the dangers posed by an unchecked Iran, as well as rising threats from China and Islamic terrorism.

“Iran will be not just a nuclear weapon power, but will have the capability to deliver that weapon to the continental United States in less than a decade,” Rubio said. “I don’t think any of us wants to live in a country where a radical Shiite cleric in Tehran can have a nuclear weapon and an ICBM that can hit where we are sitting right now.”

Rubio is among the five Republican White House hopefuls who are meeting with key players of the political machine backed by the Kochs. In total, the groups plan to spend almost $900 million before Election Day 2016, although aides stress that the sum is not going to be spent entirely on political operations.

During an interview with Politico’s Mike Allen, Rubio told the donors that foreign policy should be a major qualification of the next President. Asked about the biggest threats facing the United States, Rubio cited Islamic terrorism, Russia and Iran. He also pointed to China, which he branded a serial violator of human rights. “I don’t want the most powerful country in the world to have values like that.”

He also took his turn with the friendly audience to ding Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, the former Secretary of State. “It’s an issue that’s ongoing not just with her but also her husband, and that is the constant secrecy and drama that surrounds them everywhere they go,” Rubio said. “This country cannot afford another four years of drama that they seem to bring to everything that they’re involved in.”

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