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7 Things: Mexico sends troops to the border, special session on prisons delayed, polling shows Sessions could be a player in GOP primary and more …

7. Alabama one of the most patriotic states

  • A new report released on Monday by WalletHub revealed the top 20 most patriotic states in America, with Alabama, ranked at 19 overall. The report used 13 indicators of patriotism including how many adults who voted in 2016 and the average number of military enlistees per 1,000 civilian adults.
  • Out of the key indicators, Alabama ranked first on Civics Education Requirements, fifth for Average Number of Military Enlistees per 1,000 Civilian Adults, and tenth for Share of Adults Who Voted in 2016 Primary Elections.

6. Thanks, Missouri

  • While Alabama got all the national attention, Missouri has been more successful at banning abortion and now only has one abortion clinic still open, however, it is only until Friday due to a judge’s ruling that directed Planned Parenthood to go to the Administrative Hearing Commission to take up the issue.
  • Planned Parenthood intends to continue to fight, but Missouri is on track to become the first state without a functioning abortion clinic since Roe v. Wade passed in 1974.

5. Bye bye, student debt?

  • Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has proposed a plan to eliminate the $1.6 trillion in student debt held by 45 million Americans, which includes the federal government paying the debt and then making trade schools, community colleges and public universities tuition-free.
  • The 2020 Democratic hopeful’s campaign claims that the plan would be paid for with $2 trillion over 10 years from a tax placed on Wall Street, but tax experts have claimed it would stunt investment, innovation and economic growth which seems to be a feature and not a bug of the plan.

4. Sanctions on Iran

  • On Monday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that will place financial sanctions against Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his associates. Trump said that these sanctions will deny the supreme leader and his office access to “key financial resources and support.”
  • The Treasury Department has also issued a news release stating that any foreign financial institution that provides a financial transaction for anyone under the executive order risks being cut off from the U.S. financial system.

3. Polling shows Sessions is a contender

  • A new poll of 906 Alabamians finds that former Attorney General and U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) leads the field of the potential 2020 GOP primary candidates with 25% of those polled. Tommy Tuberville and Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) tied for second with 19%, while Roy Moore is fourth with 13%.
  • On Tuesday, Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill is expected to announce his 2020 U.S. Senate candidacy. He has already filed candidacy paperwork with the Federal Election Commission.

2. Special session for prisons might be a bit away

  • Recently, Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster) said that he’s been told it will be at least three months before a special session is called to deal with prison reform since legislators need to get data from the Alabama Sentencing Commission. Ward said, “Without all that data, all you’re doing is legislating from the heard instead of the brain.”
  • Ward has previously said that a special session is important to deal with prison issues so that it would be the only item of focus, but as Ward expressed in May, that session may not come until October.

1. Mexico works on the border while Democrats stall in D.C.

  • After President Trump pressured Mexico, Secretary of Defense Luis Sandoval announced that Mexico has deployed 15,000 troops to the border, while 2,000 National Guard members have already been deployed to the Mexico border with Guatemala and Belize.
  • Late Monday, House Democrats met with Speaker Nancy Pelosi  (D-CA) to discuss allocating more money to deal with the border crisis, but progressives like U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (D-NY), noted historian and de facto leader of the Democratic Party, appear ready to kill that deal.