August 27, 2019

President Trump never quite fit in in his hometown of New York City. But in Los Angeles, especially before his time on The Apprentice, it was even worse. Here are five remarks and recollections from Hollywood insiders documenting Trump's unorthodox time in show business, as reported by Los Angeles Magazine.

1. Trump spent a lot of time running beauty pageants, but as Susan Winston, the producer of nine of them, put it, "No one cared about Donald Trump in Hollywood. ... There were people in Hollywood who had much more power, much more money."

2. A lot of Winston's negativity stems from how, as she put it, Trump would "show up on the day of the pageant" and, despite playing no role in its production, demand he "was seen on camera three times." Winston retaliated by making Trump shake her hand even though she "knew he didn't like to touch people," she said.

3. Jeff Klein, who owns the celebrity hot spot Tower Bar, recalled how Trump would march in with then film producer, now Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and "demand a prominent table, the one everyone can see as you come in." "It's not where real movie stars sit," Klein added, but said Trump would say hello to everyone who walked in anyway.

4. Klein also hit Trump with this zinger about his show business aspirations: "I don't think [Trump] could have been a mogul. Hollywood is like high school — they would have made fun of him."

5. Trump can't say the word "film," which seems like a hindrance to a life in Hollywood in itself. "He says 'fill-im.' He said, 'I can't say that word. I just can't say it. It doesn't come out," former Apprentice producer Jonathan Braun recalled.

Read more about Trump's Hollywood days at Los Angeles Magazine. Kathryn Krawczyk

August 8, 2019

Uber just had a really, really, really bad quarter.

On Thursday, the ride hailing company posted both its biggest quarterly loss and its slowest-ever revenue growth. This was Uber's first finance report since it went public in May with a dismal IPO, and is attributing $3.9 of the $5.2 billion loss to all the stock-based compensation it had to pay out to employees when it went public, The New York Times reports.

Uber started sharing its financial data — albeit very little of it — in 2017, and posted an overall loss of $878 million in Q2 of last year. That's about half of the $1.3 billion it lost this quarter when you don't count the stock payments. Still, Uber's adjusted loss turned out to be $656 million, less than the $979.1 analysts predicted, per Bloomberg. The company also did report a revenue jump to $3.1 billion, a 14% gain from a year ago. Its adjusted revenue ended up being below analysts' estimates.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told reporters that he expected 2019 to be a "peak investment year," and that losses would slow in "2020, 2021." But Uber didn't provide any forecasts in its report, or provide noteworthy explanations for staffing cuts it announced this week. Kathryn Krawczyk

August 6, 2019

Reality is knocking for these seven Democratic presidential candidates.

The twenty-something strong 2020 primary field has been desperate for a weeding since it hit double-digit territory, though even candidates who didn't make a single debate stage have so far been reluctant to drop out. If they're looking for a reason to do so, this new Boston Globe/Suffolk University poll of likely New Hampshire primary voters might be the answer.

Unsurprisingly, former Vice President Joe Biden retains his top spot in this New Hampshire poll, gathering 21.4% support. Next up is Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) with 16.8%, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) with 13.6%, and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) at 8%.

Yet down at the other end of the spectrum, seven Democrats didn't get a single survey respondent to declare they were their top primary choice: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio; former Alaska Sen. Mike Gravel; Washington Gov. Jay Inslee; Miramir, Florida Mayor Wayne Messam; Massachusetts Rep. Seth Moulton; Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan; and former Pennsylvania Rep. Joe Sestak. Inslee, Moulton, and Ryan at least got a few people to say they were their second choice for president. Still, a solid 20.8% of respondents said they're undecided on their top 2020 primary pick so far, and another 15.7% are undecided on their second choice, giving these seemingly hopeless candidates a slim chance to turn things around.

The Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll surveyed 500 likely Democratic New Hampshire primary voters from Aug. 1-4, and had a margin of error of 4.4%. Kathryn Krawczyk

July 16, 2019

Attorney George Conway, husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway and one of the most prominent conservative critics of President Trump, said he always viewed Trump as "boorish, dim-witted, inarticulate, incoherent, narcissistic, and insensitive," but also thought he was an "equal-opportunity bully — in his uniquely crass and crude manner, he'll attack anyone he thinks is critical of him."

In an op-ed published Monday night in The Washington Post, Conway writes that because of Trump's tweets on Sunday, telling four Democratic lawmakers, all women of color, to "go back" where they came from, there is no doubt that "naiveté, resentment, and outright racism, roiled in a toxic mix, have given us a racist president. Trump could have used vile slurs, including the vilest of them all, and the intent and effect would have been no less clear."

Conway's mother came to the U.S. from the Philippines, and while he remembers in the 1970s a woman approached her in a parking lot and said "Go back to your country," this never really bothered him, because "to my mind, most Americans weren't like that. The woman in the parking lot was just a boor, an ignoramus, an aberration." Now, he can see there are more people in the world who share this woman's point of view, and it horrifies him that Trump appears to be one of them.

"Trump is not some random, embittered person in a parking lot — he's the president of the United States," Conway said. "By virtue of his office, he speaks for the country. What's at stake now is more important than judges or tax cuts or regulations or any policy issue of the day. What's at stake are the nation's ideals, its very soul." Read the entire op-ed at The Washington Post. Catherine Garcia

July 11, 2019

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has made enemies of a few more Democratic newcomers.

In an interview with The New York Times published Saturday, Pelosi pushed back against Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Ilhan Ohmar (D-Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) for their opposition to a largely bipartisan border spending bill, referring to them just "four people." Now, Ocasio-Cortez has suggested there's a racial motivation to Pelosi's words.

Pelosi has often rejected the will of progressive newcomers, and in an interview with The Washington Post published Wednesday, Ocasio-Cortez said she "understood" that was "to protect more moderate members." But this "persistent singling out" has become "just outright disrespectful . . . the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color," Ocasio-Cortez added.

Ocasio-Cortez's comment comes after she and her self-described "squad" pushed for amendments to a Republican-led bill that directed emergency funding to the border, received some compromises, and still voted against it. The bill still passed because despite having "their public whatever and their Twitter world," the freshmen representatives are just "four people and that’s how many votes they got," Pelosi told The New York Times. Pelosi also reportedly told a closed-door meeting Wednesday that Democrats can't just "tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just okay," per the Post.

Yet as Politico Playbook describes it, Pelosi's words weren't meant as an insult. To Pelosi, "if you are one person who controls 20 votes, you're powerful," and everyone else is just a "normal member," Politico writes. Those supposedly offensive comments, as Politico puts it, are simply "a reflection of a reality under which [Pelosi] operates." Kathryn Krawczyk

June 25, 2019

President Trump doesn't think Megan Rapinoe should be protesting ahead of World Cup games. Rapinoe, it seems, could not care less.

In a Monday interview with The Hill, Trump was asked if it's appropriate for the U.S. women's soccer team co-captain to refuse to put her hand over her heart during the national anthem before World Cup games. "No, I don't think so," Trump said — an unsurprising stance given his past criticism of athletes who kneeled during the anthem.

Judging by Rapinoe's very public anti-Trump statements, that won't be a problem for the midfielder. For example, take Rapinoe's comments during what appears to be a pre-World Cup press session. When asked if she was "excited about going to the White House," Rapinoe bluntly countered by saying "I'm not going to the f--king White House." "We're not gonna be invited," she then added — and she probably wasn't suggesting the team would fall short of a championship.

Rapinoe would join a long list of champions who've rejected or been denied a White House visit under Trump — not that they've been particularly hurt by the gesture. Kathryn Krawczyk

May 23, 2019

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is chalking up a delay in putting Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill to bureaucracy. Her great-great-great-great niece isn't buying it.

In a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Wednesday, Mnuchin affirmed the long-awaited replacement of Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill wasn't coming until 2028. He went on to blame the setback on addressing "counterfeiting issues," but Tubman's descendant Ernestine Wyatt told CNN's Newsroom on Thursday that Mnuchin's excuse actually "smacks of racism."

With the redesign first being announced in 2016, Wyatt declared that Mnuchin has “had time for this to happen." His defense is "just a nice way of trying to say we don't want this, we're not going to have this, under any circumstances will we have this," she continued. Kathryn Krawczyk

February 25, 2019

Former Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen doesn't believe President Trump fully comprehends economic policy or macroeconomics.

In an interview with Marketplace released Monday, Yellen said she doubts Trump "would even be able to say that the Fed's goals are maximum employment and price stability." She added that the president has made comments about trade that "shows a lack of understanding of the impact of the Fed on the economy and appropriate policy goals." When asked if she thinks Trump has a grasp of macroeconomic policy, she responded, "No, I do not."

Now a distinguished fellow in residence at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., Yellen left the Fed in 2018 after Trump did not nominate her for a second term. Trump has criticized her successor, Jerome Powell, for raising interest rates, and he's called the Fed a threat to the economy. Yellen said those comments "concern me, because if that becomes concerted, I think it does have the impact, especially if conditions in the U.S. for any reason were to deteriorate, it could undermine confidence in the Fed. And I think that that would be a bad thing." Catherine Garcia

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