GEN'RAL TATER IS BACK, IN FULL-ON TRUMP MODE: Former North Carolina Transportation Secretary Tony Tata appeared on Fox and Friends with a message of support for sending U.S. troops to the border with Mexico, and his comments drew the tweeting approval of President Donald Trump. “President Trump is a man of his word, he said he was going to be tough on the border and he is tough on the border,” Tata said during the Sunday interview. Sunday afternoon, the President took to his Twitter account to thank Tata, who responded in a tweet of his own. In the five minute interview, Tata was asked about the effectiveness of mobilizing troops as an immigration tactic and the “consternation it has caused on the left.” “The left has an immediate visceral reaction in the opposite direction to anything that President Trump does for a lot of different reasons,” Tata said. Among those: “He’s fighting the globalists tooth and nail by espousing patriotism and nationalism, as he should, as we should all do within this great country.”
BURR AND TILLIS THROW SUPPORT BEHIND THOMAS FARR'S JUDICIAL APPOINTMENT: Farr has the backing of home-state Sens. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis, both Republicans. In introducing Farr last year, Burr said the judiciary needs good people and he "fills every piece of the word good." But Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., described Farr as "probably the worst of the litter" when it comes to Trump's judicial nominees. "Could this administration have picked an individual who is more hostile to the rights of minorities than this man? It is hard to imagine," Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said in the same committee hearing. GOP leaders in charge of the North Carolina Legislature hired Farr and others at his firm to defend congressional and legislative boundaries that the Legislature approved in 2011. A federal court eventually struck some boundaries down as racial gerrymanders and the Supreme Court affirmed that decision. Farr also helped defend a 2013 law that required photo identification to vote, reduced the number of early voting days and eliminated same-day registration during that period.
U.S. BORDER AGENTS USE TEAR GAS ON MIGRANTS TRYING TO CROSS IN TIJUANA: An Associated Press reporter saw U.S. agents shoot several rounds of tear gas after some migrants attempted to penetrate several points along the border. Mexico’s Milenio TV showed images of migrants climbing over fences and peeling back metal sheeting to enter. Honduran Ana Zuniga, 23, also said she saw migrants opening a small hole in concertina wire at a gap on the Mexican side of a levee, at which point U.S. agents fired tear gas at them. Children screamed and coughed. Fumes were carried by the wind toward people who were hundreds of feet away. “We ran, but when you run the gas asphyxiates you more,” Zuniga told the AP while cradling her 3-year-old daughter Valery in her arms. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said in a statement that U.S. authorities will continue to have a “robust” presence along the Southwest border and that they will prosecute anyone who damages federal property or violates U.S. sovereignty.
STARK CHOICE AS MISSISSIPPI RUNOFF FOR U.S. SENATE PITS RACIST AGAINST BLACK MAN: She is up against Democrat Mike Espy, a former congressman and U.S. agriculture secretary who is seeking to become Mississippi's first black senator since Reconstruction. And in the final weeks of the campaign, race has become a dominant issue. Hyde-Smith has drawn fire for attending a white private school that was founded after court-ordered school desegregation of public schools. She's been seen in a photo wearing a replica hat of a Confederate soldier and in a video praising a supporter by saying, "If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row." Mississippi has a history of racially motivated lynchings and violence against people who sought voting rights for black citizens. Some 38 percent of the state's residents are black, and Espy is trying to boost their turnout and pick up support from white voters who are uneasy with Trump or the racially tinged stories about Hyde-Smith.
NAVIES OF RUSSIA AND UKRAINE CLASH IN DISPUTE OVER BLACK SEA ACCESS POINT: A dispute between Ukraine and Russia in which each accuses the other of violating laws of the sea escalated sharply on Sunday when the Ukrainian Navy said the Russian military opened fire on several of its ships, wounding six sailors and seizing the vessels. The incident in and around the Kerch Strait, a narrow body of water separating the Black and Azov Seas, marked a pivot in the undeclared war, now nearly five years old, between the former members of the Soviet Union. The Ukrainian military has been fighting two separatist movements in eastern Ukraine that are clearly backed by Moscow, though the Russian government has formally denied any direct military intervention. Ukraine claims a right to patrol in the entire Sea of Azov under a treaty Russia designating the sea as shared territorial water. The treaty was signed long before relations curdled after street protesters overthrew a pro-Russian leader of Ukraine in 2014.