If you’ve ever wondered if you could really fry an egg on the hood of your car, today would be a good day to try. It’s time to Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.
TOP OF MIND TODAY…
► President Trump on Monday evening nominated Brett Kavanaugh to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court, setting up what is expected to be a very tense confirmation battle in the Senate. CNN breaks down where Kavanaugh stands on a number of key issues. Fox 31 Denver has reaction to Kavanaugh’s nomination from Colorado elected officials.
As Aaron Blake writes for the Washington Post, Kavanaugh got off to an…interesting start with his first public comments on Monday evening:
Almost immediately, he made a thoroughly strange and quite possibly bogus claim.
“No president has ever consulted more widely, or talked with more people from more backgrounds, to seek input about a Supreme Court nomination,” Kavanaugh said.
It may seem like a throwaway line — a bit of harmless political hyperbole. But this was also the first public claim from a potential Supreme Court justice who will be tasked with interpreting and parsing the law down to the letter. Specificity and precision are the name of the game in Kavanaugh’s chosen profession. How on earth could he be so sure?
There have been 162 nominations to the Supreme Court, according to U.S. Senate records, over the past 229 years. (The Supreme Court began in 1789.) For Kavanaugh to make such a claim, he would have to have studied not just those confirmations, but the often-secretive selection processes that preceded them. These things, quite simply, are not a matter of public record or even all that well documented by reporters.
► If the Denver Post were still publishing editorials, perhaps they would be inclined to offer a “my bad” for their 2014 endorsement of Republican Cory Gardner for U.S. Senate.
► The nomination of Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court is drawing mixed reviews from social conservatives, as Vox.com reports:
The selection of Brett Kavanaugh as a replacement for retired Justice Anthony Kennedy has been met by mild disappointment by some Republicans who were hoping for a more exciting (and base-invigorating) pick, someone they would be certain would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade.
As National Review’s David French wrote Monday night, “I’ll defend [Kavanaugh] vigorously from unfair critiques tomorrow, but tonight I join many conservatives in a slight sigh of regret. There was a better choice.”
French was referring to Amy Coney Barrett, who was viewed by many conservatives as a choice more likely to overturn Roe v. Wade. But Kavanaugh, meanwhile, gives some on the right pause because of what they view as insufficiently anti-abortion arguments made in two cases and an opinion in another case that helped shore up the Affordable Care Act. But most Republicans view Kavanaugh as a solid anti-abortion vote, pointing to his decisions on other cases and his lengthy tenure in conservative legal circles.
As Robert Barnes writes for the Washington Post, Kavanaugh represents a conservative shift for SCOTUS, but perhaps not a “lurch” to the right.
► President Trump issued a very controversial pardon of two Oregon ranchers who sparked a standoff with federal agents six years ago. From CNN:
Dwight Hammond Jr. and his son Steven Hammond were granted executive grants of clemency by Trump, according to a White House statement. The father-son duo are cattle ranchers and were convicted in 2012 of committing arson on federal lands in Oregon…
…Dwight Hammond has served approximately three years in prison, and his son Steven has served four years, according to the White House.
The Hammonds said they started a fire on their property in 2001 to protect it from wildfires and reduce the growth of invasive plants, but that the fire got out of hand, CNN affiliate KTVZ reported. Prosecutors said in 2016 they set fires to cover up evidence of poaching…
…The perceived unjust sentence for the Hammonds inspired Ammon Bundy to lead an armed standoff in early 2016, when a group of armed men broke into the headquarters of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon.
Get even more smarter after the jump…
IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…
► State Sen. Dominick Moreno (D-Adams County) was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Adams 14 school board. If you’re wondering how Moreno will be able to manage serving in the legislature and on the school board at the same time…well, get in line.
► UNITE Colorado is trying to get a handful of “Unaffiliated” candidates elected to state legislative seats. On Monday, UNITE held a sparsely-attended press event at the State Capitol to show off their candidates.
► Jefferson County Commissioner Libby Szabo is on the short list of candidates to serve as GOP gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton’s running mate. Oh, sorry — we mean that Szabo might have already been chosen by Stapleton but is still being kept a secret. Shhh!
Westword ponders eight reasons why Stapleton won’t announce his choice for Lieutenant Governor.
► Everybody wants to be appointed to an open city council seat in Aurora. From the Aurora Sentinel:
There are now six in the running for the open Aurora city council at-large position.
City council members decided on six of 17 total applicants — one applicant, Marc Tachibana, withdrew his application just before Monday’s meeting.
The applicants who will be interviewed are: Timothy Huffman, Tom Tobiassen, Margaret Sobey, Jonathan Scott, Johnny Watson and JulieMarie A. Shepherd Jacklin…
…Council members will interview the candidates on July 16 and make the appointment on July 23. The chosen applicant is slated to be sworn in on August 6.
The six hopefuls are looking to fill the term of City Council Member Bob LeGare, who was appointed last month to finish the remainder of the term of late Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan.
“We have been the greatest nation on earth,” said Steven Gould, the owner of the distillery. “We have been the leader of the free world. And that’s not how we’re acting today.”…
…“Fifteen percent of my revenue last year was in Europe, so I don’t know, $150,000 worth of business. I expected to do over a quarter million dollars this year… This year I greatly doubt I’ll break $25,000.”
► John Aguilar of the Denver Post has more on potential oil and gas extraction ballot initiatives in Colorado.
► Colorado’s Marijuana Enforcement Division is considering new regulations against a handful of new marijuana products being sold in the state.
► Rest in Peace, Leonard Perlmutter.
► Larimer County Commissioners continue to hear from residents about a proposed water pipeline from the Poudre River to Thornton.
► The Colorado Independent reports on a questionable decision from the Denver City Council on Monday:
The Denver City Council, against the advice of ethics watchdogs, has adopted new rules that will allow council members and the mayor to continue receiving gifts both small and pricey — $10,000 plane seats included — from other Denver employees, but will require regular disclosure of those gifts.
In a unanimous block vote that came without any discussion on Monday evening, the council amended its ethics and disclosure rules to require council members and Mayor Michael Hancock and his staff to disclose items of at least $50 in value they receive from city personnel or city agencies outside their own offices.
► The Town of Mead will hold a special election in November to elect a new mayor after Gary Shields’ surprise resignation last month.
► Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio is considering another challenge to Nancy Pelosi for the top leadership post in the Democratic caucus.
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► President Trump is being completely not optimistic ahead of a visit to England. From The Guardian:
Donald Trump expects to see a country in “turmoil” when he lands in the UK on Thursday for a two-day visit he said would make his subsequent summit with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki seem “easy”.
The president spoke to reporters on the south lawn of the White House on Tuesday morning, before boarding Marine One to begin his trip to Europe, which will start with a Nato summit in Brussels.
He repeated familiar criticism of Nato and spoke warmly of Boris Johnson, the British foreign secretary and Brexit leader who resigned on Monday. Trump said Johnson had been “very nice” and “very supportive”.
► The city of Stockton, California is testing a “Universal Basic Income” program. The city will provide $500 monthly checks to 100 residents, no strings attached, as part of an effort to prevent poverty.