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    Ohio Elections Official Threatens to Exclude Biden From the Ballot

    The Ohio General Assembly adjourned on Wednesday without addressing an issue that the state’s top elections official said would prevent President Biden from being placed on the ballot there, escalating a partisan clash that could result in the president not being on the ballot in all 50 states in November.Frank LaRose, the Republican secretary of state, has said that he plans to exclude Mr. Biden from the ballot because he will be officially nominated after a deadline for certifying presidential nominees on the ballot. This is usually a minor procedural issue, and states have almost always offered a quick solution to ensure that major presidential candidates remain on the ballot.The Biden campaign is considering suing the state in order to ensure Mr. Biden is on the ballot, while also searching for some other way to resolve the issue without moving the date of the nominating convention, according to a person with knowledge of the deliberations.A legal fight could be expensive and arduous. The Supreme Court recently ruled that states could not bar Mr. Trump from running for another term under a constitutional provision, Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, that prohibits insurrectionists from holding office. But it took six months of legal wrangling before the court put that issue to bed.Ohio is not considered a swing state — Mr. Trump won there with an eight-point edge in 2020 — but the Biden campaign could be drawn into a monthslong legal battle to ensure that the president is on the ballot in all 50 states.A legislative fix, which would have pushed back the certification deadline to accommodate the late date of the Democratic National Convention, stalled out this month as Republicans in the Ohio Senate tacked on a partisan measure that would ban foreign donations to state ballot initiatives. Mr. LaRose has previously said that passing the ban is the price that Democrats must pay to ensure that Mr. Biden is on the ballot, and that he would otherwise enforce the law as written.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Ocasio-Cortez Backs N.Y. Bill Limiting Donations to Israeli Settlements

    Under the bill, New York nonprofits that provide financial support to Israel’s military or settlements could be sued for at least $1 million and lose their tax-exempt status.A long-shot effort by left-leaning New York state lawmakers to curtail financial support for Israeli settlements has drawn a big-name backer — but she doesn’t have a vote in Albany.Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who rarely wades into state politics, publicly backed a bill on Monday that could strip New York nonprofits of their tax-exempt status if their funds are used to support Israel’s military and settlement activity. Her involvement underscores the extent to which the war in Gaza and Israel’s treatment of Palestinians more broadly have animated the left flank of the Democratic Party as a pivotal election approaches.“It is more important now than ever to hold the Netanyahu government accountable for endorsing and, in fact, supporting some of this settler violence that prevents a lasting peace,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said at a news conference. “This bill will make sure that the ongoing atrocities that we see happening in Gaza and the West Bank, as well as the ongoing enabling of armed militias to terrorize Palestinians in the West Bank, do not benefit from New York State charitable tax exemptions.”Assemblyman Zohran Mamdani and State Senator Jabari Brisport introduced the bill, called the “Not on Our Dime” act, months before the Oct. 7 attack, saying it was an effort to prevent tax-exempt donations from subsidizing violence by Israeli settlers in the West Bank. It was widely criticized by Albany lawmakers and declared a “nonstarter.” Now its sponsors say they plan to revise the bill to prohibit “aiding and abetting” the resettling of the Gaza Strip or providing “unauthorized support” for Israeli military activity that violates international law.“There’s a newfound consciousness in our country with regards to the urgency of Palestinian human rights, and we have to propose and advocate for legislation that reflects public sentiment,” Mr. Mamdani said in a recent interview, referring to some of Israel’s violence toward people in Gaza and the West Bank as “war crimes.”The lawmakers announced the relaunch of the bill at an event at Ms. Ocasio-Cortez’s Bronx district office on Monday morning, surrounded by left-leaning elected officials from the City Council and State Legislature. Asked why she had chosen to endorse a state-level bill, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said that it was “politically perilous” to do so and that she had wanted to support her colleagues.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Sarah Elfreth, Maryland’s Youngest Female State Senator, Wins House Primary

    Sarah Elfreth, the youngest woman ever elected to Maryland’s State Senate, won a crowded Democratic primary race on Tuesday in Maryland’s Third Congressional District, according to The Associated Press.Ms. Elfreth, 35, emerged from a field of more than 20 Democrats vying in the deep-blue district to succeed Representative John Sarbanes, a Democrat who announced last October that after nine terms he would not seek re-election.First elected to the Maryland State Senate in 2018, Ms. Elfreth often highlighted her political résumé during her run and played up the bipartisan legislative victories she helped to secure while serving in the General Assembly. She ran on a platform with standard Democratic fare that included pledges to protect abortion rights, combat gun violence and fight climate change.Ms. Elfreth drew support from several local Democrats. Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland, who did not seek re-election this year, spoke favorably of her while appearing on the trail alongside her last week — though he stopped short of a formal endorsement.Her most prominent rival was Harry Dunn, a former Capitol Police officer who was on duty during the attacks on Jan. 6, 2021, and rose to national fame after testifying in the House investigation into the attack. Mr. Dunn, a first-time candidate, had significantly out-raised his opponents in the race since announcing his run in January, and was endorsed by a number of prominent national Democrats.Ms. Elfreth had raised about $1.5 million since starting her campaign in November, significantly less than the $4.6 million that Mr. Dunn had amassed. But she received support from outside groups, including more than $4.2 million in spending from the United Democracy Project, a super PAC affiliated with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the pro-Israel group.Her support drew attacks from Mr. Dunn, who swore off funding from outside groups and criticized Ms. Elfreth for at times voting alongside Republicans in the State Senate. Ms. Elfreth, for her part, said she would prioritize campaign finance reform in Congress, and her campaign said that Mr. Dunn had distorted Ms. Elfreth’s record.Ms. Elfreth will be favored in the heavily Democratic district in November. More

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    Angela Alsobrooks Defeats David Trone in Maryland Democratic Senate Primary

    Angela Alsobrooks, the Prince George’s County executive, won the Democratic primary for Maryland’s Senate seat on Tuesday, setting up a showdown with a popular Republican former governor that could determine control of the chamber.The Associated Press called the race on Tuesday night for Ms. Alsobrooks, 53, who defeated Representative David Trone, a wealthy congressman who spent more than $61 million of his own money on the race. Mr. Trone outspent Ms. Alsobrooks by a nearly 10-to-1 ratio.She is trying to become the first Black woman to represent Maryland in the Senate. The chamber now has just four Black members, three men and one woman, Senator Laphonza Butler, who has made it clear she will leave at the end of her term in January.While Ms. Alsobrooks, a former prosecutor, trailed Mr. Trone early in the race, she was buoyed by widespread support among Maryland’s Democratic elected officials, who rallied around her campaign.She will now face Larry Hogan, the former Maryland governor, in what will be a closely watched race. Mr. Hogan was recruited to run by Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the minority leader, as Republicans try to recapture the Senate.Democrats and three independents who largely vote with them now control the chamber 51 to 49, but Republicans are favored to pick up West Virginia, increasing the need for Democrats to hold Maryland.Ms. Alsobrooks and Mr. Hogan will compete to replace Senator Benjamin L. Cardin, who is retiring after holding the seat since 2007.The primary between Ms. Alsobrooks and Mr. Trone turned negative as it tightened, splitting Democrats in Congress and beyond. A competitive primary was a rarity in Maryland, a reliably Democratic state that has not had a Republican senator in nearly four decades. Mr. Hogan’s decision to enter the race changed all that.Mr. Trone scored endorsements from congressional leaders, who were eager to have a wealthy candidate who could fund his own Senate run as they embark on a costly battle in several competitive states to keep control of the chamber. But all but one Democrat in the state’s congressional delegation backed Ms. Alsobrooks. More

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    Democrats’ Split Over Israel Takes Center Stage in Tense Primary Debate

    A rancorous clash between Representative Jamaal Bowman and his Democratic opponent, George Latimer, exposed sharp divisions in their party.Democrats’ smoldering divisions over the war in Gaza flared in New York on Monday, as Representative Jamaal Bowman, one of the House’s most endangered incumbents, debated a party rival over Israel’s war tactics, American military aid and a powerful pro-Israel group.In many ways, their exchanges echoed those playing out from Congress to college campuses. But for Mr. Bowman, there was something more at stake: His sharp criticism of Israel has put him at risk of losing his seat in a primary in the New York City suburbs next month.That possibility appeared to be front of mind as he began the race’s first televised debate in White Plains, N.Y. Mr. Bowman joined his more moderate opponent, George Latimer, in reiterating support for two states — one Palestinian and one Jewish — and condemning antisemitism. He steered clear of incendiary terms like “genocide” that have cost him key Jewish support. Both candidates let some deeper differences slide.The comity lasted all of 25 minutes.Friction spiked — and never really abated — after the conversation turned to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the influential pro-Israel lobby that helped push Mr. Latimer into the race and has pledged millions of dollars to defeat Mr. Bowman and other members of the House’s left-wing “Squad.”Sensing a rare opportunity to go on the attack, the congressman accused Mr. Latimer, the Westchester County executive, of being “bought and paid for” by the group and its deep-pocketed funders, who Mr. Bowman said also support “right-wing Republicans who want to destroy our democracy.”Mr. Latimer did not take the gibe kindly. The group, as he quickly pointed out, has deep ties to Democratic leadership, but its brook-no-criticism approach to Israel’s deadly counteroffensive in Gaza has alienated large numbers of Democratic lawmakers and voters.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    In Deep-Blue Maryland, a Democratic Primary Turns Uncommonly Competitive

    The contest between Angela Alsobrooks, the Prince George’s County executive, and Representative David Trone has grown tighter as they vie to take on Larry Hogan, the G.O.P. ex-governor.Wearing white Chuck Taylor sneakers with her gray pantsuit, Angela Alsobrooks was in the middle of a whirlwind day of campaigning in the vote-rich suburbs of Maryland last week when a voter confronted her with the question on everyone’s mind: Was she the candidate with the best chance of keeping the state’s up-for-grabs seat in the United States Senate in Democratic hands?It’s an unfamiliar question for deep-blue Maryland, which hasn’t had a Republican senator in nearly four decades. But the state’s typically sleepy Senate race has heated up this year after Larry Hogan, the popular former two-term Republican governor, decided to run.Now Democrats across the state are wringing their hands trying to figure out which of their candidates has a better shot at defeating Mr. Hogan. The primary, which is set for Tuesday, pits Ms. Alsobrooks, the Prince George’s County executive who is trying to become the first Black person and second woman from Maryland to serve in the Senate, against Representative David Trone, a wealthy third-term congressman who is smashing self-financing records — he has spent more than $61 million of his own money, flooding the airwaves with TV ads — to secure a victory.Perhaps because of the heightened stakes, the contest has turned increasingly negative as it has tightened, splitting Democrats in Congress and beyond. While congressional leaders have endorsed Mr. Trone, all but one Democrat in the state’s congressional delegation are backing Ms. Alsobrooks. She also drew support from several Black lawmakers from other states after Mr. Trone used a racial slur at a congressional hearing — a remark for which he later apologized, saying he meant to say a different word.Barbara Peart, 76, the voter who questioned Ms. Alsobrooks last week about her chances, said she did so because she was terrified that a Republican could win the seat and flip the Senate, boosting the agenda of former President Donald J. Trump.“It’s scary because it’s no exaggeration that it’s the most important race in a long time,” Mrs. Peart, a Democrat from Columbia, Md., said. “We can’t afford to lose the Senate.”We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Mike Johnson Becomes the Speaker of the Whole House. For Now.

    Democrats saved the speaker but want to oust him at the ballot box in November, while his standing in his own party remains in serious question.The notion that the speaker serves the whole House is often tossed around, but rarely the case.While the position is established in the Constitution and under longstanding House rules entails presiding over the entire institution, the speaker has historically played a highly political role, installed by the majority party to ruthlessly execute its will and legislative agenda. But circumstances have changed.Representative Mike Johnson can now, for better or worse, truly lay claim to being speaker of the whole House, after Democrats saved him from a Republican-led coup on Wednesday in another remarkable moment in a chaotic Congress filled with them. Had Democrats not come to his rescue, the votes existed in his own party to potentially oust him.It was the logical outcome of a session in which House Democrats, despite being in the minority, have repeatedly supplied the votes and even the procedural backing to do most of the heavy legislative lifting to stave off default, fund the government and aid U.S. allies, forming an uneasy coalition government with more mainstream Republicans.The result left Mr. Johnson, a Louisiana Republican still new to the job, indebted to Democrats even as he immediately sought to distance himself from them by emphasizing his deep conservative credentials. Democrats said their support for him underscored their bona fides as the grown-up party willing to go so far as to back a conservative Republican speaker to prevent the House from again going off the rails.Now the two parties will have to navigate this previously unexplored terrain as they head into an election season that will determine who is speaker next year.The reality is that after passing the foreign aid package including funding for Ukraine that prompted the push by Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, Republican of Georgia, to depose Mr. Johnson, little polarizing legislative work remains to be done this Congress while the fight for House control is about to get into full swing. That fact led Mr. Johnson to walk off the House floor to high-fives from his Republican supporters and quickly try to remind his colleagues and America that, despite the decisive Democratic assist, he is still a die-hard right winger.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Talk of Escape: Trump’s Possible Return Rattles D.C.

    At Washington dinner parties, dark jokes abound about where to go into exile if the former president reclaims the White House.It has become the topic of the season at Washington dinner parties and receptions. Where would you go if it really happens?Portugal, says a former member of Congress. Australia, says a former agency director. Canada, says a Biden administration official. France, says a liberal columnist. Poland, says a former investigator.They’re joking. Sort of. At least in most cases. It’s a gallows humor with a dark edge. Much of official Washington is bracing for the possibility that former President Donald J. Trump really could return — this time with “retribution” as his avowed mission, the discussion is where people might go into a sort of self-imposed exile.Whether they mean it or not, the buzz is a telling indicator of the grim mood among many in the nation’s capital these days. The “what if” goes beyond the normal prospect of a side unhappy about a lost election. It speaks to the nervousness about a would-be president who talks of being a dictator for a day, who vows to “root out” enemies he called “vermin,” who threatens to prosecute adversaries, who suggests a general he deems disloyal deserves “DEATH,” whose lawyers say he may have immunity even if he orders the assassination of political rivals.“I feel like in the past two weeks that conversation for whatever reason has just surged,” said Miles Taylor, a former Trump administration official who became a vocal critic of the former president. “People are feeling that it’s very obvious if a second Trump terms happens, it’s going to be slash and burn.”That’s all fine with Mr. Trump and his allies. In their view, Washington’s fear is the point. He is the disrupter of the elite. He is coming to break up their corrupt “uniparty” hold on power. If establishment Washington is upset about the possibility that he returns, that is a selling point to his base around the country that is alienated from the people in power.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More