Leading the week
2024 hopefuls are out in force next week hoping to scoop up campaign donations before books close for the quarter on Friday (June 30). President Joe Biden kicks off his fundraising week on Tuesday (June 27) with campaign receptions in Maryland before heading to Chicago on Wednesday (June 28) – when, as it happens, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. will also visit for a NewsNation town hall – and then New York City on Thursday (June 29). There has been some concern among Democrats that Biden’s campaign hasn’t got off the ground fast enough, but he may be able to calm some of those nerves if this month’s big-ticket receptions pay off.
Biden’s would-be Republican challengers are on the campaign trail, too – on Monday (June 26), Florida Governor Ron DeSantis visits the border in Texas, following on from a similar trip to Arizona earlier this month, and then joins Donald Trump and Nikki Haley in New Hampshire on Tuesday (June 27). Haley’s visit is part of an internationally focused week which will see her deliver an address on China to the AEI on Tuesday and take part in a foreign policy conversation in Portsmouth on Wednesday (June 28).
Several candidates will then be in Philadelphia later in the week for an event hosted by Moms for Liberty, the parents’ rights group that made headlines this week after one of its chapters had to apologize for quoting Adolf Hitler on its newsletter. Trump, Haley, and DeSantis are all due to speak on Friday (June 30), while, controversially, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. speaks on the Sunday (July 2). Trump rounds off the week with a pre-Independence Day rally in South Carolina on Saturday (July 1).
It’s shaping up to be a big week at the Supreme Court with the ethics scandal-ridden current term due to end on Friday (June 30). Opinions in a number of key cases have yet to be announced, including in challenges to Biden’s student loan debt forgiveness plan, the use of affirmative action in college admissions programs and Colorado’s anti-discrimination law, a gerrymandering case involving the so-called independent state legislature theory, and a case asking whether online messages count as ‘true threats’. The court has announced that opinions will be published on Tuesday (June 27), but at least one more date is likely to be added before the week is out.
European leaders gather in Brussels on Thursday and Friday (June 29-30) for yet another summit dominated by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, though leaders will also discuss economic issues, migration, China, and July’s summit with Latin American and Caribbean leaders. The meeting comes as the bloc finally agreed its latest sanctions package against Russia after weeks of negotiations that were threatening to overshadow the summit, and follows a breakthrough earlier this month in talks to overhaul EU asylum rules. But leaders are still working through disagreements over the Commission’s recent proposals for new checks on exports to, and investments in, China as Brussels pushes for tighter controls while member states look to protect their trade links with Beijing.
Leaders are also likely to use the summit to hold informal discussions on who should succeed Jens Stoltenberg as the next NATO chief amid suggestions that Stoltenberg could be asked to extend his term for a fourth time as allies struggle to agree on a replacement. Stoltenberg, meanwhile, is in Lithuania on Monday and Tuesday (June 26-27) as part of preparations for the Vilnius summit next month, where his successor is due to be unveiled.
A media circus is expected at a London court on Wednesday (June 28) as Hollywood actor Kevin Spacey appears in person to stand trial on a string of sexual assault charges. The American Beauty star has denied 12 counts of sexual assault, indecent assault, and causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent against four different men between 2001 and 2013, and has vowed to clear his name and restore his career. Netflix dropped Spacey from House of Cards in the wake of the charges, and producers of All the Money in the World even scrapped scenes with him, reshooting them with actor Christopher Plummer. But the actor said in a recent interview that he hopes people are ready to work with him again ‘the moment after’ the trial, which is scheduled to last four weeks. He faces a prison sentence if found guilty.