The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump faces protests as he visits Dayton, El Paso

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The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump faces protests as he visits Dayton, El Paso | Defends remarks: 'I think my rhetoric brings people together' | Jabs at O'Rourke | Trump says he is 'all in favor' of background checks | Questions Congress's will to act | McConnell under pressure to hold gun vote | Sanders calls Dem debate format 'demeaning' | FedEx ends delivery deal with Amazon | Self-driving car gets test near Capitol



Check 'em:

Before leaving for Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso Texas, President TrumpDonald TrumpMcCabe wins back full FBI pension after being fired under Trump Biden's Supreme Court reform study panel notes 'considerable' risks to court expansion Bennie Thompson not ruling out subpoenaing Trump MORE told reporters that he backs background checks on weapon purchases.

In Trump's words: "I'm looking to do background checks. I think background checks are important. I don't want to put guns into the hands of mentally unstable people or people with rage or hate. Sick people. I'm all in favor of it."

What about banning high powered weapons?: Trump doubted Congress would support that. "You have to have a political appetite within Congress and so far I haven't seen that," Trump told reporters.


Don't blame the rhetoric:

President Trump accused critics of "looking for political gain" by placing blame on his immigration stances. "I don't think my rhetoric does at all. I think my rhetoric brings people together. Our country is doing really well," Trump told reporters.


It's Wednesday. I'm Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what's coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to -- and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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Trump visits Ohio and Texas:

President Trump just visited Dayton, Ohio, in the aftermath of Sunday's mass shooting. The president is now heading to El Paso, Texas, to visit following Saturday's Walmart shooting.

Livestream of Trump's Dayton visit:

Video of protests against President Trump in Dayton:

Protester signs:



Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownBuilding back better by investing in workers and communities US on track to miss debt payments as soon as Oct. 19: analysis On The Money — Presented by NRHC — Democrats cross the debt ceiling Rubicon MORE (D-Ohio). Brown said in a statement: "I spent much of yesterday wrestling with the right thing to do when President Trump visits Dayton today. I decided I have a responsibility to Ohioans to use this opportunity to look the president in the eye and urge him to do the right thing."



Today's feud -- Beto vs. Trump:

President Trump got into a dispute on Twitter with former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeAbbott bans vaccine mandates from any 'entity in Texas' Abbott disapproval rating up 8 points to 59 percent in San Antonio area: poll Beto O'Rourke weighs in on Matthew McConaughey's potential Texas bid MORE (D-Texas), telling the presidential candidate to "be quiet."

The tweet that started the back and forth -- Beto posted: "When President Trump comes to El Paso tomorrow, I will be joining our strong, beautiful, binational community at #ElPasoStrong. I hope to see you there."

Trump then trounced on Beto: "Beto (phony name to indicate Hispanic heritage) O'Rourke, who is embarrassed by my last visit to the Great State of Texas, where I trounced him, and is now even more embarrassed by polling at 1% in the Democrat Primary, should respect the victims & law enforcement -- & be quiet!"

Beto then responded to Trump: "22 people in my hometown are dead after an act of terror inspired by your racism. El Paso will not be quiet and neither will I."



"I've been following Beto O'Rourke through his community as it mourns this week -- and person after person has thanked him for being their voice, for sticking up for their community, for confronting the president. None of his neighbors are telling him to be quiet." (From The Washington Post's Jenna Johnson


Where Hispanic leaders stand in the debate:

Via The Hill's Rafael Bernal, "President Trump's condemnation of 'racism, bigotry and white supremacy' is failing to soothe Hispanics in the wake of the shootings in El Paso, Texas, as members of the community fear more physical violence amid a climate of heightened rhetoric on immigration."

For example: Hispanic leaders and local community groups called on Trump to cancel today's visit to El Paso.

From Domingo García, president of the League of United Latin American Citizens: "President Trump owes an apology to all the victims in Gilroy, California and El Paso, Texas for using a predatory rhetoric and failing to condemn hate groups when, from the beginning of his presidency, after Charlottesville and leading all the way up to El Paso, he's created a toxic political environment and opened up a Pandora's box of white extremists." 



Bernie thinks the debates are ridiculous, too:

Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley, "Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersOn The Money — Progressives play hard ball on Biden budget plan The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Altria - Biden: We will fix nation's problems Left doubles down on aggressive strategy MORE (I-Vt.) is frustrated by the Democratic presidential primary debates, saying that the spectacle of 20 candidates agitating for time plays to their worst instincts and is 'demeaning' to the field of contenders."

Keep in mind: The debate stage should shrink in the next debate. The Democratic National Committee doubled the polling and donor requirements for qualification. 



Washington is lovely in August and senators just want to experience that:

Via The Hill's Jordain Carney, Democrats and gun control advocates are pressuring Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden signs bill to raise debt ceiling On The Money — Progressives play hard ball on Biden budget plan Schumer, McConnell headed for another collision over voting rights MORE (R-Ky.) to bring the Senate back from the August recess to pass gun legislation after the shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.

When the Senate is currently scheduled to return: Sept. 9

From Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSenate to vote next week on Freedom to Vote Act To Win 2022: Go big on reconciliation and invest in Latinx voters McConnell-aligned group targeting Kelly, Cortez Masto and Hassan with M ad campaign MORE (D-N.Y.): "We're saying to Leader McConnell: do the right thing. Gavel the Senate to an emergency session so we can take immediate action." On why the bill has been held up: "Leader McConnell is not putting it on the floor. That's what's holding it back. That's it."



Spotted near the U.S. Capitol:

An Argo AI "self-driving test vehicle" was seen on the streets of Washington, D.C. Photo:



It's not you, it's me:

Via Reuters, FedEx is ending its ground-delivery contract with Amazon.

Timing: "The move by the U.S. package delivery company comes two months after it decided not to renew its contract with Amazon for U.S. cargo delivery through its plane-based express service." 

Keep in mind: "Analysts have said Amazon has secured a better rate with UPS for package deliveries on planes, so it makes little sense for the company to partner with FedEx." 






The House and Senate are out. President Trump is visiting Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, today. Vice President Pence has no public events on his schedule.

10:35 a.m. EDT: President Trump and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpGOP leader's remarks on Fox underscore Trump's power White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee Ex-Trump aide sues Grisham over abuse allegations MORE visit Dayton, Ohio 

3:45 p.m. EDT: President Trump and first lady Melania Trump visit El Paso, Texas.

10:15 p.m. EDT: President Trump and first lady Melania Trump get back to Washington, D.C.



10 a.m. EDT: Montana Gov. Steve BullockSteve Bullock65 former governors, mayors back bipartisan infrastructure deal Arkansas, New Jersey governors to head National Governors Association Biden 'allies' painting him into a corner MORE (D), who is running for president, spoke at the National Press Club. Livestream:

12:35 p.m. EDT: Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoState Department watchdog probing whether Trump aides took gifts meant for foreign officials Biden shows little progress with Abraham Accords on first anniversary Biden slips further back to failed China policies MORE holds a joint press conference with British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab. Livestream:



Today is National Raspberries and Cream Day.


And because you made it this far, here's a dog who is THRILLED to be posing with his idols, Mickey and Minnie: