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Trump’s tax returns aren’t the only crucial files prosecutors will get

When New York prosecutors can finally review former President Donald J. Trump’s federal income tax returns, they’ll discover a real how-to guide to getting rich while losing millions of dollars and paying little to no tax on Income.

However, whether they find evidence of crimes will also depend on other information that is not in the actual statements.

The United States Supreme Court on Monday cleared the way for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. to obtain eight years of federal tax returns from Mr. Trump and other documents from his accountants. The ruling ended a long legal battle over prosecutors’ access to information.

Last year, The New York Times gave more or less a glimpse of what lies ahead for Mr. Vance, when it obtained and analyzed decades of tax data for Mr. Trump and his businesses. The tax records offer an unprecedented and highly detailed look into the Byzantine world of Mr. Trump’s finances, which he has simultaneously bragged about for years and sought to keep a secret.

The Times review showed the former president reported hundreds of millions of dollars in business losses, spent years without paying federal income tax, and was facing an Internal Revenue Service audit. ‘a $ 72.9 million tax refund he claimed ten years ago.

Among other things, records revealed that Mr. Trump had paid only $ 750 in federal taxes in his first year as president and no income tax in 10 of the previous 15 years. They also showed that he wrote off $ 26 million in “consulting fees” as a business expense between 2010 and 2018, some of which appears to have been paid to his eldest daughter, Ivanka Trump, while she was employee of the Trump organization.

The legitimacy of the fees, which reduced Mr. Trump’s taxable income, has since become a subject of Mr. Vance’s investigation, as well as a separate civil investigation by Letitia James, the New York attorney general. Ms James and Mr Vance are Democrats, and Mr Trump has sought to portray the multiple investigations as politically motivated, while denying any wrongdoing.

Mr Vance’s office has issued subpoenas and conducted interviews in recent months as it examined a variety of financial matters, including whether the Trump organization had distorted the value of assets when obtaining loans or the payment of property taxes, as well as the payment of $ 130,000 in silent money. during the 2016 campaign to Stephanie Clifford, the pornographic actress whose stage name is Stormy Daniels. Among those interviewed were employees of Deutsche Bank, one of Mr. Trump’s biggest lenders.

Despite all their disclosures, Mr Trump’s tax records are also noteworthy for what they do not show, including new details about the payment to Ms Clifford, who was the original subject of Mr Vance when she started two years ago.

Tax returns represent self-reported income and expense accounting, and often lack the specificity required to know, for example, whether legal fees related to discrete payments have been claimed as a tax waiver, or whether the money of Russia once scanned Mr. Trump’s bank accounts. The lack of that level of detail underscores the potential value of other documents Mr. Vance had access to with Monday’s Supreme Court ruling.

In addition to tax returns, Mr. Trump’s accountants, Mazars USA, are also required to produce business records on which those returns are based and communications with the Trump organization. Such documents could provide important context and context for the decisions Mr. Trump or his accountants have made when preparing the tax return.

John D. Fort, former head of the IRS’s criminal investigations division, said tax returns were a useful tool in uncovering leads, but could only be fully understood with additional financial information obtained elsewhere.

“It’s a very important personal financial document, but it’s only one piece of the puzzle,” said Mr. Fort, a CPA and director of investigations at Kostelanetz & Fink in Washington. “What you find in the statement should be followed by interviews and subpoenas.”

Yet the Times’ investigation into Mr. Trump’s returns uncovered a number of misleading claims and lies he spread about his wealth and business acumen.

Many claims of Mr. Trump’s generous philanthropy have collapsed when reviewing his tax returns, which has raised questions about the amount of some donations and the overall nature of his tax-deductible donations. For example, $ 119.3 million of the roughly $ 130 million in charitable deductions he had claimed since 2005 turned out to be the estimated value of pledges not to develop real estate, sometimes after the failure of a planned project.

At least two of these land-based charitable deductions, one linked to a golf course in Los Angeles and the other to an estate in Westchester called Seven Springs, are known to be part of Ms James’ civil investigation. , which examines whether valuations support tax write-offs have been inflated.

More generally, tax records have shown how the public disclosures he filed as candidate, and then as president, offered a distorted view of his overall finances by reporting glowing numbers for his golf courses, hotels and the like. companies based on the gross revenues they collected each year. . The actual bottom line, after losses and expenses, was much bleaker: In 2018, while Mr. Trump’s public filings showed income of $ 434.9 million, his tax returns reported a total of 47, $ 4 million in losses.

And such dire numbers were not an anomaly. Mr. Trump’s numerous golf courses, a vital component of his business empire, recorded losses of $ 315.6 million between 2000 and 2018, while revenues from licensing hotels in his name and resorts had all but dried up by the time he entered the White House. In addition, Mr. Trump has hundreds of millions of dollars in loans, much of which he has personally guaranteed, which will mature in the next few years.

The Times investigation also found he was facing a potentially devastating IRS audit focused on the huge refund he claimed in 2010, which covered all federal income taxes he paid. from 2005 to 2008, plus interest. Mr Trump has repeatedly cited the ongoing audit as the reason he couldn’t release his tax returns, having initially said he would, even though nothing in the audit process did. prevented from doing so.

If an IRS ruling were ultimately to go against him, Mr. Trump could be forced to repay more than $ 100 million, including interest and possible penalties, in addition to some $ 21.2 million in local and state tax refunds based on the numbers. in its federal documents.

Russ buettner and Susanne Craig contribution to reports.

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Buttigieg plans to resume transport service at Crucial Juncture

WASHINGTON – Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., Will testify before the Senate on Thursday for his confirmation hearing to become President Biden’s transportation secretary.

If confirmed, Mr Buttigieg, 39, would become the first openly gay cabinet secretary to be confirmed by the Senate and the youngest member of Mr Biden’s cabinet.

In his testimony before the Committee on Trade, Science and Transport, Mr Buttigieg will not focus on specific policy proposals, but instead set out a broad vision of his mandate, centered on security, green infrastructure and investment. in the overhaul of transport to revive the economy. , according to a preliminary copy of his remarks.

“We need to rebuild our economy, better than ever,” he should say. “The Ministry of Transport can play a central role in this regard.”

Supporters of Mr. Buttigieg said his experience could give Mr. Biden an effective envoy who can help push through large-scale changes in infrastructure.

But his critics have said Mr Buttigieg’s record on police practices and race relations – including his dismissal of a black police chief and his failure to diversify the extremely white South Bend police force – coupled with his Relatively thin experience of the specifics of transport overhaul means it has a lot to prove.

Mr Buttigieg said he would try to use his role to help protect travelers from the pandemic, while aligning the agency’s initiatives with Mr Biden’s goals on climate change, racial justice and job creation.

“I think we have a great opportunity,” he said in a video interview before his hearing. “I’m really excited about what we can do to really strengthen our infrastructure base in this country. There is no reason why Americans should settle for less than our counterparts in other countries. “

If confirmed, Mr Buttigieg would take over an agency with 55,000 employees and a budget of $ 87 billion at a time when the country’s transportation systems are reeling from the pandemic.

Biden said infrastructure overhaul will play an important role in the start of his administration. On the first day of his tenure, he signed an executive order requiring a mask warrant on interstate travel and federal property. Its $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus relief program is also expected to include at least $ 20 billion for struggling transit systems. He also wants to push through an ambitious $ 2 trillion infrastructure plan that would require major negotiations with Congress.

Mr Biden – who compared Mr Buttigieg to his son Beau, who died in 2015 – believes Mr Buttigieg will play a vital role in promoting the administration’s ‘Build Back Better’ agenda.

“Jobs, infrastructure, fairness and the climate all come together at DOT,” Biden said, announcing Mr. Buttigieg as his candidate for the post of transport secretary. “I trust Mayor Pete to lead this work with focus, decency and a bold vision.

Transit experts said Mr. Biden could use Mr. Buttigieg’s public stature, loyal clientele, and media savvy to push forward ambitious transportation changes, which have become a perennial goal and up to the point. now impractical on Capitol Hill.

“He’s a very good explicator of what he’s trying to do,” said Beth Osborne, director of Transportation for America, an advocacy group. “And I think transport could really use that now.”

Mr Buttigieg, who has met many lawmakers after being appointed, said ‘there is such bipartisan energy for infrastructure’ that he believes a deal can be made but will require work. important. “I think there is a real chance to do something,” he says. “I think the challenges come when it’s time to figure out how we’re going to pay for it.”

As a presidential candidate, Mr. Buttigieg released a $ 1 trillion infrastructure plan to create six million jobs, stem the effects of climate change and boost investment in public transit, passenger rail transport and electric vehicles while trying to halve the national backlog of road repairs in 10 years.

As Mr Biden’s candidate, Mr Buttigieg has indicated that climate change will be a priority for the ministry, promoting electric vehicles to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. He said he would seek to overturn transportation policies that have been going on for decades and that have led to limited access of low-income people and minority residents to transportation.

Mr. Buttigieg would not step into this role with extensive experience in implementing federal transport policy. Mr. Biden’s candidate for deputy secretary of transportation, Polly Trottenberg, headed the New York Department of Transportation for seven years.

During Mr. Buttigieg’s time as mayor, his main transit accomplishment was a $ 25 million project, called Smart Streets, which converted South Bend’s one-way roads to two-way streets with cycle paths and sidewalks to encourage pedestrian traffic and downtown commercial activity.

Jeff Rea, the president of the South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce, said he was initially skeptical when Mr Buttigieg presented the plan, but said the $ 180 to 200 million investment in the downtown area followed, and he praised the mayor for his “data-driven approach to the transport review.

But Jorden Giger, founder of the city’s Black Lives Matter chapter, said Mr. Buttigieg’s downtown revitalization plan, as well as a program to demolish or repair 1,000 houses in the city, had accelerated the gentrification and helped reduce homeownership rates for minorities.

Black leaders in South Bend have also criticized Mr. Buttigieg’s frosty relationship with the community, and said they feared his lackluster record in supporting minority businesses and appointing people of color to positions could end. continue.

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Participation is crucial as Georgians chart the course of the Senate

After Mr Warnock largely escaped criticism in the November election, as Ms Loeffler focused on tackling a challenge from his right, he came forward for particularly harsh criticism.

Republicans shed light on Mr Warnock’s most controversial sermons and portrayed him as a critic of the military and law enforcement, powerful attacks in Georgia, even as Mr Warnock refuted them . Mr Warnock has sought to defuse the attacks and soften his image by running tongue-in-cheek ads featuring him with a puppy.

The Republicans ad was full of ominous warnings that the country would fall into a swamp of far-left socialism if both Democrats win. At Monday’s rally, Mr. Trump warned that Democrats “will turn America into Venezuela, without jobs, without prosperity, without rights, without freedom, without a future for you and your family.”

Mr Ossoff has also taken heavy hits against Mr Perdue, calling him a ‘con artist’ over the controversial stock transactions the senator has made, while accusing him of trying to profit from the coronavirus pandemic, this which Mr. Perdue denies.

Neither party lacked the resources to make its case. These are the most expensive Senate contests in US history. Including the campaign before the second round, more than $ 469 million was spent in the Perdue-Ossoff contest, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, and more than $ 362 million was spent on the Loeffler-Warnock race.

The fact that the races were competitive was a testament to the changing nature of Georgia.

Although dominated by Republicans for much of the past two decades, the state is evolving due to an influx of newcomers, immigrants, and US-born voters, chasing warm weather and opportunity. by Sun Belt.

And the two Senate races were pushed into the second round by some of the defining forces shaping national politics.

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The presidency appears within Biden’s grasp as his lead widens on crucial battlefields.

The outside stage was all set in Wilmington, Del., For Joseph R. Biden Jr. to speak and address the nation – presumably in a victory speech as president-elect.

There were banners and spotlights and people in cars ready to honk their approval for the next president and his running mate, Senator Kamala Harris. But the hour was getting late and the vote count continued with no sign of a winner in the contest between Mr. Biden and President Trump.

Finally, around 11 p.m., Mr. Biden emerged. He did not give a victory speech, but came as close as possible, speaking about what he intended to do as president while assuring Americans that “your vote will be counted.” It was clear that Mr. Biden was becoming as restless with the long and laborious account as much of the country.

“It’s that slow,” Biden said, describing watching the numbers flow on television. “As slow as it gets, it can be numbing.”

It has now been four days since polling day. As long as it sounds, it is a far cry from the 36 days it took in 2000 before the Supreme Court ended the recount and effectively declared George W. Bush the winner over Al Gore.

While all indications suggest that Mr. Biden was successful in defeating Mr. Trump, he’s still close enough in four states – Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Georgia – that the contest remains unsolved.

As the number of outstanding ballots slowly dwindled, Mr. Trump increasingly found himself with only legal challenges to avoid defeat. He was unusually out of sight on Friday.

This post-election limbo was more proof of the bizarre election it was. Polling counters have been overwhelmed by the record number of early votes in the mail due to the pandemic; hence the slow and meticulous counts taking place across the country.

Most elections end when one candidate calls on the other to give in. Mr. Trump may be lagging behind – with dwindling hopes of winning – but he’s not the kind of person to concede. And it is not in Mr. Biden’s political interest to unilaterally declare victory (as Mr. Trump effectively did) and fuel the conspiracy theory pushed by the President and his supporters that Democrats are trying to steal the elections.

The count therefore continues. And on. And on.

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Victory appears within Biden’s grasp as his lead widens on crucial battlefields.

The outside stage was all set in Wilmington, Del., For Joseph R. Biden Jr. to speak and address the nation – presumably in a victory speech as president-elect.

There were banners and spotlights and people in cars ready to honk their approval for the next president and his running mate, Senator Kamala Harris. But the hour was getting late and the vote count continued, with no sign of a winner in the contest between Mr. Biden and President Trump.

Finally, around 11 p.m., Mr. Biden emerged. He did not give a victory speech, but came as close as possible, speaking about what he intended to do as president while assuring Americans that “your vote will be counted.” It was clear that Mr. Biden was becoming as restless with the long and laborious account as much of the country.

“It’s that slow,” Biden said, describing watching the numbers flow on television. “As slow as it gets, it can be numbing.”

It has now been four days since polling day. As long as it sounds, it is a far cry from the 36 days it took in 2000 before the Supreme Court ended the recount and effectively declared George W. Bush the winner over Al Gore.

While all indications suggest that Mr. Biden was successful in defeating Mr. Trump, he’s still close enough in four states – Arizona, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Georgia – that the contest remains unsolved.

As the number of outstanding ballots slowly dwindled, Mr. Trump increasingly found himself with only legal challenges to avoid defeat. He was unusually out of sight on Friday.

This post-election limbo was more proof of the bizarre election it was. Polling counters have been overwhelmed by the record number of early votes in the mail due to the pandemic; hence the slow and meticulous counts taking place across the country.

Most elections end when one candidate calls on the other to give in. Mr. Trump may be lagging behind – with dwindling hopes of winning – but he’s not the kind of person to concede. And it is not in Mr. Biden’s political interest to unilaterally declare victory (as Mr. Trump effectively did) and fuel the conspiracy theory pushed by the President and his supporters that Democrats are trying to steal the elections.

The count therefore continues. And on. And on.

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Election hinges on crucial battlegrounds slightly favoring Biden

After an extraordinary night that put the country’s democracy to the test, Wednesday’s presidential election relied on results in several crucial battlegrounds that favored Joseph R. Biden Jr., who took over Wisconsin and Michigan held a slim lead in Arizona, all the states President Trump carried in 2016.

With votes still being counted from coast to coast, Mr. Biden pushed Mr. Trump back to the West, where the late vote tally shrank the former vice president’s margin and he gradually declined. built an advantage in the Great Lakes states that tipped the presidency. Four years ago.

In mid-afternoon, the Associated Press declared Mr. Biden the winner in Wisconsin, where he held a lead of less than 1%, and in Michigan. He also held a 93,000-vote lead in Arizona, but Republicans argued that the remaining uncounted votes could reduce the former vice president’s advantage. Mr Biden led with just 8,000 votes in Nevada, where no news agency made a statement, but a number of uncounted mail-in ballots are expected to favor him there.

If Mr. Biden held Mr. Trump back in Arizona and Nevada and maintained his lead in Michigan, he would have enough electoral votes to claim victory.

But as one of the most unusual presidential elections in history continued into its second, but certainly not the last, count day, Mr Trump himself seemed determined to fuel an atmosphere of anxiety and friction. Politics: After using an election night speech to attack the integrity of the vote, the president maintained his barrage on Wednesday, amplifying baseless conspiracy theories about the build-up of votes for Mr Biden in slow-counting states .

But while Mr Trump has called for an end to the count – in fact demanding that millions of voters be disenfranchised – and threatened to take it to court over it, his campaign has taken no legal action. Wednesday, and it wasn’t clear. that the Trump team had a real theory of how to turn the president’s grievances into litigation.

At around 2 a.m. on Wednesday, Mr. Trump showed up at the White House to falsely insist that he won and demand that the votes stop being counted. The president denounced Wednesday morning on Twitter the votes Mr. Biden got overnight.

“How is it that every time they count the postal ballot dumps, they’re so devastating in their percentages and destructive power?” he wrote, as if expressing his inner monologue as he watched his opponent take the lead in two pivotal Midwestern states.

Mr. Biden was winning Michigan by 67,000 votes when the PA declared him the winner.

Wisconsin’s margin is small enough to allow for a recount, but, as former Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, a Republican, put it, “If it holds up, 20,000 is a tall order.”

Mr Trump’s campaign manager Bill Stepien released a statement Wednesday afternoon promising to call for a state recount.

Even though Wisconsin and Michigan were emerging as the most critical states, North Carolina, Georgia and Pennsylvania were also still pending on Wednesday.

North Carolina was leaning toward Mr. Trump, who was hanging on to a 77,000 vote lead, with 95% of the votes counted. But there was more uncertainty in Georgia, where a few hundred thousand outstanding votes, mostly in the Atlanta area, offered Mr. Biden a chance to reduce Mr. Trump’s 87,000-vote lead.

Pennsylvania was perhaps the most important question mark, in part because it had only counted about 80% of its votes by noon on Wednesday and expected more ballots to arrive this week. Both campaigns used conference calls with reporters to express confidence in their potential to win, even though Mr Biden had the most obvious path.

Jennifer O’Malley Dillon, her campaign manager, said they expected Michigan and Wisconsin to be called up for them today and projected the confidence they would claim in Pennsylvania later in the week. .

“We think it’s already taken for granted, but there are still a few states that are still at stake, which are a little closer, but we think that this could push us even further beyond 270” said Ms. O’Malley Dillon, after noting their lead in Arizona, Nevada, Wisconsin and Michigan.

In his remarks, Mr. Stepien stressed that Wisconsin will narrate and project its confidence in maintaining Georgia. But Mr Stepien insisted that Nevada’s mail-in ballots would be passed to Mr Trump, even though they overwhelmingly favored Mr Biden, and said the president would win Pennsylvania by about 40,000 votes. .

“If we count all the legal ballots, the president wins,” he said.

On Tuesday night, Mr. Trump dashed Democrats’ hopes to take back both Florida and Ohio, two swaying states that have leaned to the right in recent years, and which Mr. Trump carried four years ago. . He also fended off a challenge from Mr. Biden in Iowa, a small state where Mr. Biden made a late effort to collect his six constituency votes.

In Georgia, it appears that there have been a large number of uncounted ballots in the Atlanta metro area, and those votes are expected to tip solidly in Mr. Biden’s favor. And in a number of rural counties across the state, Mr Biden was slightly outperforming the margins posted by Stacey Abrams, a Democrat who lost a gubernatorial race two years ago by around 55,000 votes.

The vote count was moving relatively slowly in some battlefield states on Tuesday night due to the scale of the turnout, a backlog of mail-in ballots and patchy issues with the processing of the vote. And each state has handled the counting and publication of its ballots differently.

Ohio, for example, released the results of all its mail-in ballots after the polls closed – making the state appear to be leaning towards Mr Biden until more votes are cast. cast on polling day. Likewise, Michigan released its voting day in the early hours after polling closed, suggesting Mr. Trump had a large advantage in a highly contested state.

Much of the uncertainty over the elections arose from the inconsistent or disparate panoply of state policies hastily put in place to allow voting in the midst of a public health disaster. In a number of states, such as Pennsylvania and Michigan, local Republican officials have blocked Democratic efforts to facilitate the counting of ballots before election day, raising the possibility of an extended count. in some of the most important battlefields – the event itself. Mr. Trump protested Wednesday morning.

Democrats feared that in some cases a Supreme Court now dominated by Tory judges could ultimately limit the vote count in a way that would help Mr. Trump, a possibility the president touched on in his remarks.

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Collins wins in Maine, denying Democrats crucial Senate takeover

BANGOR, me. – Senator Susan Collins, Republican from Maine, claimed victory on Wednesday in her bid for a fifth term, fending off an avalanche of Democratic money and liberal anger in the toughest race of her career to defeat Sara Gideon, a Democrat, and strengthen the party’s grip on the Senate.

Her triumph, reported by The Associated Press, preserved Ms Collins’ status as New England’s only Republican in Congress. She became the first female senator in state history to be directly chosen by voters for a fifth term in the upper house, dashing Democratic hopes for a crucial recovery as their ambitions for a takeover of the Senate were hanging on by a thread.

Ms Collins, 67, who had lagged in most public polls this year, weathered the liberal tide in part by focusing her campaign on local issues and distancing herself from Mr Trump, refusing even to say whether she would vote for him.

Striving to preserve an image she has carefully cultivated as an independent-minded moderate, she reminded voters of her accomplishments for the state and underlined her likely rise to the head of the powerful Credit Committee, which allocates federal spending, if the Republicans retain a majority, as well as his personal connections in the state.

“I think this is an affirmation of the work I do in Washington to fight hard every day, to fight every day for the people of Maine,” Ms Collins said to a small crowd of masked supporters clapping in. Parking at the Hilton Garden Inn, shortly after Ms. Gideon called her to concede the race. “I will serve you with all my heart, I will work hard for you every day, and together we will come together to work on the issues and challenges facing our state and our country.”

National Democrats, furious after Ms Collins became a key vote in favor of Mr Trump’s tax plan and Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court in 2018, had chosen Ms Collins as a priority target on their way to recover the majority in the Senate. As a result, the race had become the most expensive in Maine history, with national donors flooding the state with tens of millions of dollars and a wave of negative publicity.

Ms Gideon, the president of Maine’s House, had sought to frame the campaign as a referendum on Republicans, portraying Ms Collins as out of touch with the state and in tune with Mr Trump and Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the leader of the majority. She capitalized on the growing polarization of the state in the Trump era, as Democrats and independent voters grew increasingly frustrated with Ms Collins’ model of expressing distress at the President’s language and actions. , only to side with his party on crucial issues.

But Ms Gideon ultimately failed, failing to stop Ms Collins from reaching the 50% threshold required for outright victory in the state’s choice voting system. Republicans had feared the system would hurt her chances, potentially consolidating liberal opposition to her given the presence in the race of a progressive, Lisa Savage, who openly encouraged her supporters to list Ms Gideon as second choice. .

“The Mainers rallied to our campaign in a way I have never seen before, and while we were unsuccessful, I think the Mainers across this state are ready to keep working. together to make a difference, ”Ms. Gideon said. in a gloomy concession speech. “Whatever the outcome, we’ve built a movement together that will help us move forward for years to come.”

The pandemic offered Ms Collins the opportunity to counter the narrative by highlighting her work with Democrats, as she defended what would become a popular federal loan program to stabilize thousands of small businesses across the country in law stimulus of $ 2.2 trillion enacted in the spring. . The creation of the Paycheck Protection Program, along with a series of steps to revise and rebuild it, also provided Ms Collins in stark contrast to Ms Gideon, who adjourned the Legislature of the ‘State in March and failed to garner bipartisan support to meet there.

In the days leading up to Tuesday’s election, Ms Collins crisscrossed the state in her campaign bus, visiting small businesses that survived the pandemic by taking advantage of the loan program and towns in Maine that benefited from her work in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

“I’m taking the same approach I’ve always taken,” Collins told reporters Wednesday. Earlier today, West Virginia Democrat Senator Joe Manchin III called her, she said, seeking to meet in the coming days to resolve the lingering deadlock over another relief program against coronaviruses.

Ms Collins, whose vote for Judge Kavanaugh prompted critics to raise nearly $ 4 million for her eventual opponent, further polished her credentials as a moderate willing to break with her party when Senate Republicans walked away. are rushed to fill the vacant Supreme Court post left in September by death. Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Ms Collins became one of only two senators from her party to oppose moving forward to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett ahead of the election, and the only one to vote “no.” She stressed her objections after her fellow Republicans blocked Judge Merrick B. Garland, President Barack Obama’s choice to succeed Judge Antonin Scalia after his death in 2016, as they insisted that such seat should not be filled in an election year.

With Republicans otherwise almost united to move forward, they did not need her vote anyway, and unusual circumstances allowed Ms Collins, who supports the right to abortion, to avoid the whether to confirm a candidate who personally opposed abortion.

Democrats scoffed at the vote, arguing it had no impact on the process and used the vote to try to increase Ms Gideon’s chances in the final days of the campaign.

But in the end, on a soundtrack to “Still the One” from Orleans and “I’m Still Standing” by Elton John screaming in the snowy hotel parking lot, Ms. Collins won.

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Hickenlooper overthrows Gardner in Colorado, gives Democrats crucial Senate seat

As a result, the senator found himself constantly wedged between independent voters and other voters who expected him to break away from the president’s more extreme positions and those from the firmly conservative albeit less populated regions of the country. States that unquestionably supported Mr. Trump and demanded that Mr. Gardner do the same.

He centered his re-election campaign largely on widely held agenda items unlikely to offend either group. He used his ties to the president to win Mr. Trump’s pledge this year to fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund used to acquire public land, even though the president’s budget office had favored elimination of money for the program. Mr. Gardner, along with Senator Steve Daines of Montana, another Republican in danger, made a personal appeal to the White House for Mr. Trump to support the legislation, seeing it as a way to attract independent and moderate voters. The historic bill was enacted in August, but it was not enough.

Mr Hickenlooper, who in 1988 opened a popular brewery that helped redevelop downtown Denver, initially insisted he was not interested in the Senate seat.

“I’m not cut out to be a senator,” Hickenlooper said in early 2019 as he resisted demands to challenge Mr. Gardner and opted for a presidential election instead. But after failing to break through nationally, he quickly changed course, and in August 2019 he said “now is not the time to step away from the table” and that he does had “not finished fighting for the people of Colorado”.

Mr Hickenlooper still faced a hurdle to take on Mr Gardner, a main race against Andrew Romanoff, a former State House speaker who ran to the left of the former governor. Mr Hickenlooper’s journey to the appointment was complicated in June, when he failed to participate in a state ethics committee review of charges of failing to properly report private jet travel and trips abroad. He was looked down upon and received extensive negative media coverage. He appeared the next day, but the commission eventually fined him $ 2,750 for two violations and refused to overturn his contempt finding.

He still managed to beat Mr. Romanoff decisively in June, hosting a race with Mr. Gardner that drew millions of dollars from outside groups.

Mr. Hickenlooper hit Mr. Gardner continuously for voting to strike down the Affordable Care Act and eliminate coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. Mr Gardner pushed back and supported legislation that Republicans say would guarantee coverage, and when Democrats forced a vote last month on a measure to prevent the Trump administration from fighting in court to overturn the law on health, he was one of many Republican senators. in tough re-election races that broke with their party to support it. But he was never able to close the gap with Mr. Hickenlooper.

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Chance to Expand Medicaid Brings Democrats in Crucial North Carolina

If registered low-income voters voted at the same rate as high-income voters in 15 states who spoke to Mr. Trump in 2016, including North Carolina, they would equal or exceed his margin of victory in those states, according to the study. And for many, access to health care has been an elusive goal, often with devastating consequences.

In an interview, Dr Barber said the coronavirus pandemic has turned this lack of access into a crisis.

“Covid has forced the conversation on healthcare,” he said. “There’s no way you can’t talk about it.

Dr Barber is quick to remind his audience in North Carolina that Senator Tillis helped lead a successful effort in the legislature to pass legislation banning the expansion of Medicaid in 2013, when he was president of representatives room. The Campaign of the Poor has recruited more than 5,000 volunteers in eight states “who are committed to calling over a million poor, low-wage people who did not vote last time, are ready to observe the polls, or are going. canvas communities with their face shields and masks and gloves, ”he said,“ because it’s a matter of life and death in the truest sense of the word.

Jessica Holmes, a Democrat candidate for labor commissioner, said such efforts motivate people like her 84-year-old grandmother, who she says has never voted in a presidential election until now.

“We’re in the biggest medical crisis of a lot of our lives,” Ms. Holmes said, “and yet all over North Carolina we’re talking about selling hospitals or clinics shutting down.

Joseph Danko, 54, who lost his construction job in March and suffers from asthma, was distressed to learn he was not eligible for Medicaid despite having virtually no income. Anxiety over health care was one of the main reasons Mr Danko, of Raleigh, voted early for Mr Biden and other Democrats, he said, handing over his ballot to vote in person “to be 100% sure” that it would be counted.

“It has been a crazy year,” he said, “but we hope and pray for change.”