Hurricane Matthew, Lewd Recordings and More Email Hacking

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Hurricane Matthew
Photo Credit: 
Wikipedia/Public Domain

As Hurricane Matthew batters the coasts of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, our presidential candidates are approaching the natural disaster in different ways.

Firstly, each is issuing the standard tweets expected from politicians in the spotlight, from advising residents to follow emergency instructions and evacuate when needed, to urging them to consider the safety of their families. However, are both Clinton and Trump using the incident to boost campaign coverage?

Just three days ago, it was reported Clinton would be using increased views on the Weather Channel to gain a little leverage, with a $63,000 ad buy during Hurricane Matthew coverage. However, now it’s believed campaigners have ordered stations in Florida to not run the ads, at risk of seeming a bit too much like they’re taking advantage of a very bad situation. It seems Trump is unfazed by the hurricane upheaval, though, and sent Florida residents yesterday morning an email urging them to “stop Hillary.”

However, Trump has bigger problems at the moment, with a recording just recently leaked Friday night of a very lewd conversation that took place in the early 2000s. Trump reportedly said that he’s heard worse from Bill Clinton.

The Clinton campaign meanwhile asked Republic Gov. Rick Scott to extend voter registration, which he refused to do. Some, such as Daniel Smith, professor, University of Florida, believe the governor’s refusal is directly intended to keep Democratic voters who have yet to register at home, essentially helping the GOP.

The presidential candidates aren’t the only ones in the public eye giving Hurricane Matthew his fair due. Conservative political media author Matt Drudge, from DrudgeReport.com, has been getting quite a lot of ridicule for his recent tweets. Drudge implies that perhaps Hurricane Matthew isn’t as dangerous as government officials have made it out to be, saying that officials are just trying to make an exaggerated point on climate change. Responses to his tweets are telling Drudge to go to Florida and find out just how strong the hurricane is for himself, and some are comparing his words and somewhat conspiracy theorist-mindset to a tweet from Donald Trump (now revoked) saying that climate change was a myth created by the Chinese.

Otherwise, Trump and Clinton are preparing for tomorrow’s debate. In anticipation, both have reportedly released statements on how they plan to address poverty and hunger in the United States. The statements were released to Vote to End Hunger, a group striving to make hunger and poverty more prominent election issues.

“One in five U.S. children struggles with hunger. So why has there been virtually no mention of hunger and poverty in the presidential and vice presidential debates?” asked David Beckmann, president, Bread for the World. “Both statements provide valuable insights into how each candidate would address hunger and poverty in our country and around the world and in many ways stand in stark contrast to each other. The statements also set the stage for Martha Radiate and Anderson Cooper, the moderators of this Sunday’s debate, to ask Trump and Clinton to defend their competing plans to reduce hunger and poverty.”

Trump’s rather generic statement points to an agenda meant to create jobs in rural and urban poverty-stricken areas, as well address crime and recidivism. He also points to needed incentives to bring business and manufacturing to American soil, rather than outsourcing, and alludes to the need for increased trade. Trump’s full statement can be read here.

Hillary’s statement is more straightforward, and promises actual changes with actual deadlines, such as a goal to cut the nation’s poverty in half in 10 years, and make the largest investment in job creation in the country since World War II within her first 100 days in office. Of course, she alludes to equal pay for women and minimum wage raises, and also references her prior work as First Lady. How exactly she plans to reach these goals and their fine points, isn’t exactly addressed within the statement, which can be read in full here.

In other news, Friday the Obama administration for the first time blamed recent hacks and email leaks on Vladimir Putin and Russia, with the goal of rigging the upcoming election. Homeland Security released a statement noting, “The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations. The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.”

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