Politics

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Julian Bond, a key civil rights activist and anti-war campaigner who helped found the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and later served for years as the chairman of the NAACP, has died at age 75.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, where Bond served as president in the 1970s, announced his death in a statement on Sunday. The SPLC said Bond died Saturday evening in Fort Walton Beach, Fla.

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It was a hectic day at the Iowa State Fair. Thousands crowded around as Donald Trump and other candidates toured the fairgrounds. So many people crowded the area where the famed butter cow was that Trump wasn't even able to go visit it.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., was also there. And around the same time Trump wrapped up his visit — and circled the airspace with his helicopter — Sanders had this reaction:

"I apologize; we left the helicopter at home," said Sanders, who has made income inequality a top issue in his campaign. "It's in the garage," he added to laughter.

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Hillary Clinton reiterated her earlier remarks that she "did not send or receive emails marked 'classified' " on a private server used while she was secretary of state, calling the controversy over the subject the "usual" partisan politics.

Appearing at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines with former Sen. Tom Harkin, who endorsed her on Friday, Clinton said "the facts are the same as they have been from the beginning."

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Democratic presidential candidates played to a full house in Clear Lake, Iowa, on Friday night — in the same ballroom where in 1959 Buddy Holly played his last-ever show. At the historic Surf Ballroom, with a vintage mirror ball dangling from the ceiling, candidates offered up a version of their own greatest hits.

In her speech, Hillary Clinton took a new approach, going after those who have been attacking her over her email accounts and over her actions during the 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

Sen. Sherrod Brown announced Friday he is going to block the confirmation of a high-level White House nominee, because of the Obama administration's refusal to relax its secrecy protocols that make it difficult for members of Congress and their staffs to review the language in a Pacific Rim trade deal.

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And with more on the week in politics, joining me are David Brooks, columnist for The New York Times, and, sitting in for the vacationing E.J. Dionne, Suzy Khimm, senior editor at The New Republic.

Good to see you both here.

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Donald Trump never met Dalton Javier Ramirez. But the 69-year-old real estate mogul would have a grudging respect for the ambitious 28-year-old piñata entrepreneur.

Ben Carson alleged in an interview with Fox News Wednesday that Planned Parenthood puts most of its clinics in black neighborhoods to "control the population" and that its founder, Margaret Sanger, "was not particularly enamored with black people."

There are highly scientific polls, with careful attention paid to sample size and demographics.

There are robopolls where computers make the calls and interview those who pick up the phone.

There are those cable TV polls where viewers are asked to "call this number and tell us who you like."

And then there's the Corn Caucus, sponsored by WHO-TV in Des Moines, every presidential election season at the Iowa State Fair.

New Hampshire is in the throes of a drug epidemic driven by prescription opioids and heroin.

"The state of New Hampshire loses a citizen to an overdose death about every day," said Tym Rourke, chairman of the New Hampshire Governor's Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse.

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This past week, residents of Ferguson, Mo., and demonstrators from far afield mark the anniversary of the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown. There were angry-but-peaceful protests.

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Connecticut's Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the state's current death penalty law is unconstitutional.

The decision spares the lives of 11 inmates already on the state's death row who were subject to execution even though state lawmakers passed legislation repealing capital punishment in 2012. That law applied to all future cases, not capital crimes committed before the legislation was enacted.

The court effectively closed that loophole with a 4-3 vote.

One day before the historic reopening of the U.S. Embassy in Cuba, former President Fidel Castro asserted in a newspaper column that the U.S. owes the island country "millions of dollars" as reparations for a decades-long embargo.

According to Agence France-Presse, Castro, who turned 89 Thursday, wrote: "Cuba is owed compensation equivalent to damages, which total many millions of dollars, as our country has stated with irrefutable arguments and data in all of its speeches at the United Nations."

Another year, another revelation about Warren Harding's love life. Last summer, the 29th president's love letters to a mistress were released; now comes news that DNA tests show Harding did in fact father a child with another mistress, whose claims were denied for decades.

Harding, who died in office in 1923, never had a child with his wife; for years, his family said that he had been rendered infertile by a case of the mumps.

It was hard not to notice Rick Perry's plight last month, when the Republican presidential campaigns filed their financial disclosures. The former Texas governor's total take so far is $1.1 million. Cash on hand as of June 30 was $884,000. For comparison, fellow Texan Sen. Ted Cruz's campaign raised $14.3 million, with $8.5 million on hand.

But even as Perry For President Inc. is cutting its payroll, his people have a rescue plan. If it works, it's likely to set a new standard for how presidential campaigns are financed.

You might have heard of the famous butter cow — a life-sized cow made of butter that headlines every Iowa State Fair. But perhaps you didn't know that in 1952, the fair also featured butter sculptures of that year's presidential candidates Dwight D. Eisenhower and Adlai Stevenson.

It's just another example of the symbiotic relationship between politicians and the fair — and it's only gotten deeper over the decades.

Jimmy Carter revealed Wednesday that he has cancer. Carter, 90 released a short statement with the news:

"Recent liver surgery revealed that I have cancer that now is in other parts of my body. I will be rearranging my schedule as necessary so I can undergo treatment by physicians at Emory Healthcare. A more complete public statement will be made when facts are known, possibly next week."

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