hidden messages
September 25, 2020

Ben Carson has some problems with the White House.

The secretary of housing and urban development spoke Friday in Atlanta ahead of President Trump's speech outlining his platform for Black Americans. But it's what Carson didn't say that stole the show: A bulleted list of talking points and complaints he seemingly wanted to bring up with Trump.

In a photo captured by Bloomberg's Justin Sink, words on a paper in front of Carson at the event clearly showed Carson has some problems with the White House Office of Presidential Personnel and its director John McEntee. "I am very loyal to you and after you win I hope to stay in your administration," the first bullet reads. "I am not happy with the way PPO is handling my agency," the next bullet says. The final line reads "I like John and respect what he is doing, however I am sensing a severe [illegible] of trust," with the illegible word blocked by a microphone stand.

Carson didn't say any of those things during the speech. The White House declined to comment to Bloomberg, and Carson's team did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Kathryn Krawczyk

February 17, 2017

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) championed the importance of the West and warned against growing threats to its survival while speaking Friday at the Munich Security Conference. Looking back to the conference's founding more than 50 years ago, McCain warned the same threats that rocked the West's fate then were re-emerging, including the "hardening resentment ... toward immigrants," the "unwillingness to separate truth from lies," and the "turn away from universal values and toward old ties of blood, and race, and sectarianism."

"The next panel asks us to consider whether the West will survive," McCain said. "In recent years, this question would invite accusations of hyperbole and alarmism. Not this year. If ever there were a time to treat this question with a deadly seriousness, it is now."

Alluding to comments from President Trump, McCain urged Europe to realize not all American leaders are interested in "laying down the mantle of global leadership." "I refuse to accept that our values are morally equivalent to those of our adversaries. I am a proud, unapologetic believer in the West, and I believe we must always, always stand up for it ," McCain said, urging everyone to "be vigilant" and "perservere." "For if we do not, who will?" Becca Stanek

July 21, 2016

Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson is pretty sure that when Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told the Republican National Convention to "vote your conscience," what he meant to say was "vote for Gary Johnson." In an interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo on Thursday morning, the former New Mexico governor clarified just how big of an opportunity he thinks Cruz's refusal to endorse Trump might have created for him.

"Well he did say to vote for Gary Johnson didn't he, and that was vote your conscience," Johnson said, promptly breaking out in self-satisfied laughter.

Cuomo surfaced an alternative explanation, mentioning that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich had interpreted Cruz's remark as an endorsement of Trump, since Trump is "the only candidate in the race who will uphold the Constitution." Johnson responded by saying that he, too, "certainly would uphold the Constitution" — and then proceeded to remind Cuomo about Trump's plans to make it easier to sue the media. "First Amendment?" Johnson said. "What's that? First Amendment, that's in the Constitution of the United States."

Watch the exchange below. Becca Stanek

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