It’s a September swoon. After abruptly leaving a 9/11 memorial in New York yesterday, Hillary Clinton revealed she is suffering from pneumonia diagnosed on Friday — raising questions about her physical fitness and transparency. Coming just after she dismissed half of Donald Trump’s backers as a “basket of deplorables,” it’s a shaky moment for a campaign seeing its lead shrink. Trump has eagerly pressed health concerns in recent months, and has now said he’ll release his own elusive medical records for comparison. Clinton has canceled Monday and Tuesday West Coast campaign stops while she recovers.
The Presidential Daily Brief
Will this one hold? After the quick collapse of a February cease-fire, skepticism abounds over a deal struck in Geneva by the U.S. and Russia to end Syrian hostilities at sundown Monday. It calls for the government — which announced its approval yesterday — and rebel groups to join in targeting ISIS and al-Qaeda. Violence continued Saturday, with an airstrike of undetermined origin killing 13 children and 45 others in rebel-held Idlib. The five-year civil war has killed an estimated 500,000, and would pause for 10 days if the agreement’s honored.
They say he’s better. John Hinckley Jr., the would-be assassin of President Ronald Reagan while obsessing over actress Jodie Foster, was released from this morning from the District of Columbia’s St. Elizabeth’s Hospital after 35 years of psychiatric rehabilitation. Doctors convinced a federal judge that Hinckley, found not guilty by reason of insanity after his 1981 attack in front of a D.C. hotel, no longer posed a threat to others. Now 61, he’ll live with his 90-year-old mother in Williamsburg, Va., where he’s already stayed during temporary releases since 2006.
Don’t dis the voters. The Clinton campaign’s in damage-control mode, trying to walk back the candidate’s Friday assertion at an LGBT event that “half of Trump supporters,” ranging from “sexist” to “xenophobic,” belong in “a basket of deplorables.” Clinton expressed regret, saying she was “grossly generalistic, and that’s never a good idea.” Trump tweeted that Clinton was “SO INSULTING” to his “amazing, hard-working” supporters and the gaffe’s been likened to Mitt Romney’s ruinous 2012 utterance that 47 percent of Americans craved government handouts. Clinton nonetheless maintains polling leads, but her supporters’ enthusiasm is waning.
It wasn’t his narrative. Throughout his 10th and final Asian trip last week, the U.S. president sought to demonstrate his tilt toward East Asia, a region he believes is crucial to American foreign policy. But that news got buried beneath the petty and the personal: a lack of aircraft stairs in China and a canceled meeting with the Philippine president over an insult. But Obama scored a joint climate pledge with China and warmer relations with Asian allies who appreciate a powerful friend — especially in the face of North Korea’s nuclear tests.
It doesn’t have “terrorist” groups. But the world’s youngest nation isn’t safe. Washington was instrumental in helping sub-Saharan South Sudan become independent from Arab-dominated Sudan, but the government of ethnic Dinka President Salva Kiir has seemingly turned against it. This week State Department officials testified before a congressional subcommittee that Kiir’s troops ambushed a U.S. Embassy convoy and brutalized American aid workers. “This is not accidental,” says one former U.S. official, who believes Kiir wants to drive out foreigners so he can conduct the civil war against ethnic Nuer rivals without restraint.
Know This: A fire in a Bangladesh factory where cigarettes and food are packed killed 24 Saturday. A third-floor deck collapsed under at least 30 revelers near Connecticut’s Trinity College, miraculously without fatalities. And Greta Zimmer Friedman, the nurse famously photographed being kissed by a sailor overjoyed that World War II had just ended, is dead at 92.
Watch This: OZY Co-Founder and CEO Carlos Watson joins CBS This Morning: Saturday to discuss how foreign policy affects presidential candidates’ chances and Hillary Clinton’s new positive campaign ad.
Remember This: Survivors of the 9/11 attacks 15 years ago today recount the event’s aftermath. A WTC worker who didn’t go in that morning couldn’t call her daughter, who, warned of further attacks, “wanted to come home from school so she could die with us.”
She’s not retiring. The German won the U.S. Open Saturday, defeating 10th-seeded Czech Karolina Pliskova — who’d beaten both Williams sisters in the tournament — in an unusually competitive final, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4. The accomplishment cemented Kerber’s new No. 1 status after Serena Williams’ semifinal loss to Pliskova. It also made Kerber the first German to win the U.S. Open since her idol, Steffi Graf, did in 1996. And despite being the oldest player to first attain the top ranking, she’s not about to rest on her laurels.
Got milk? Originally native to Mexico, chili peppers have become a global sensation, with hot sauce consumption skyrocketing and adventurous eaters on YouTube pushing past pain thresholds with chilis that defy the Scoville heat scale. But why? Macho pepper competitions aside, it might actually be a form of masochism. The chili isn’t genuinely harmful, but it is a triumph of mind over body to ingest something that causes such discomfort. Just be warned: Excessive hot pepper consumption makes other foods taste bland, prompting devotees to ratchet up the dose to feel the burn.
It was too good to be true. To investors and journalists, Elizabeth Holmes’ story was irresistible: a blonde Steve Jobs wannabe who founded a tech company as a 19-year-old Stanford dropout, hoping to change the world with a finger-prick blood test for all manner of conditions. But her firm, Theranos, never developed the promised technology — relying instead on secretly subcontracted testing. The marketing myth was punctured by The Wall Street Journal, and the government stepped in with bans and investigations, leaving observers to wonder when Holmes will face reality.
Sometimes words get in the way. Even in the chat age, Hollywood gets tongue-tied trying to impart messages of the textual variety. Spoken dialogue can be riveting, but letters on a screen? Not so much. Translating words from a handheld screen to a cinematic one is often jarring and even trite, but lately, there’s been a wave of creative solutions — from expressive beeps and voice-overs to body language — that filmmakers hope will convey the gist fast enough to keep us from checking our phones.
Not everyone wants those damn kids off their lawn. Senior citizens are often isolated from others, to their detriment, so innovative Europeans are creating intergenerational communities, some adding nurseries to nursing homes and offering free rent to young adults who assist retirees. Mixing ages has been shown to reduce depression among seniors and improve their physical health while encouraging social interaction and community building. Drawing inspiration from Scandinavian examples, some hope to bring more of these facilities to the U.S., particularly for those who don’t mind the pitter-patter of little feet.
Could it be worse than becoming the first Black president? From measured to vicious critiques of Hillary Clinton, something ugly lurks beneath the surface, posits writer Peter Beinart. Fifty-two percent of white men have “very unfavorable” views of her, and overall negative impressions are the highest since such surveys began in 1980. Much of the misogynistic response appears to have intensified — and become more publicly acceptable — over the course of her campaign. And if Australia and Brazil are any example, a President Clinton could face a backlash that goes far beyond politics.
It’s OK if the uniform is white. The girls have Venus and Serena as role models, but midtier Black tennis player Donald Young doesn’t have the same draw for today’s youth. American tennis is struggling to attract minorities — a problem not shared by professional football and basketball — while trying to change its image as a country club game. The U.S. Tennis Association is diversifying coaches and volunteers, but appealing to young players of color will depend on up-and-comers like Frances Tiafoe and Michael Mmoh — and whether they can bust out as superstars.