Good morning, one and all. Hope everybody is ready to have a laugh—or, perhaps, cry—on us. Let’s jump right in:

1) Ross hammers Burr for sticking with Trump.

U.S. Senate candidate Deborah Ross used Thursday’s debate with Richard Burr to, mainly, call him out for continuing to support Donald Trump, despite all the crazy shit that has come to light in the last few days. We’ll get to that in a moment, but for now, here is what Ross said—and how Burr attempted to justify the unjustifiable. From the N&O:

“It’s very disturbing to me,” she said. “Sen. Burr has stuck by Donald Trump through all of this, and I think that shows a lack of judgment. Sen. Burr has toed the party line even when Donald Trump has crossed the line.”

Burr … said he condemns Trump’s comments on a leaked tape from 2005 but has forgiven the presidential candidate.

“If in fact he did it,” Burr said of Trump’s boasts on the tape, “that would be sexual assault. I take him at his word that he didn’t do it.”

But wait. Burr wasn’t done there. In fact, he essentially said that even if Trump were really a scumbag—fact check: he is—Hillary Clinton is WAY worse.

Asked about whether Trump is qualified to handle the country’s nuclear codes, Burr said he has concerns about both presidential candidates on that issue.

“I have more concerns about Hillary Clinton because of her lack of judgment, because of the way she’s handled her official business as secretary of state,” he said.

Um … OK?

2) Trump faces allegations of sexual misconduct, defends himself by trashing alleged victims.

Just when you think he’s said it all, Donald Trump finds new ways to embarrass himself and every single person who is throwing his or her support his way in a few weeks. His defense against groping allegations? Thank you, CNN:

Trump also included an apparent insult to Natasha Stoynoff, the woman from People Magazine in which she alleged that she had been physically attacked by Trump at Mar-A-Lago while she was on assignment in December 2005 writing a profile of his first anniversary with his wife, Melania.

“Take a look, you take a look, look at her, look at her words — you tell me what you think. I don’t think so,” Trump said at his rally.

Oh, and in case you didn’t know, this is all the liberal media’s fault.

“Let’s be clear on one thing,” Trump said. “The corporate media in our country is no longer involved in journalism, they’re a political special interest no different than any lobbyist or financial entity with a total political agenda and the agenda is not for you, it’s for themselves. And their agenda is to elect Crooked Hillary Clinton at any cost, at any price, no matter how many lives they destroy.”

And let us be clear. The race for the most important job in the world is no longer anything resembling dignified. It’s a train wreck. So, thanks for that, Donald.

4) We went to a Franklin Graham rally yesterday. It was, shall we say, an experience.

Well, after we were told by the N.C. Values Coalition that we couldn’t attend the Carolina Values Summit in Raleigh yesterday, we decided to hang with the people who attended it at a post-summit rally featuring Franklin Graham.

Here’s just a taste. If you want more, click on these hip, blue words.

I’m standing outside the state Capitol, attempting to ascertain what’s on the minds of Franklin Graham’s disciples as we approach Election Day, when an old man wearing a cowboy hat lets me know who’s in charge.

He calls me a “fucking sodomite” and tells me he hopes I “burn in the fires of hell.”

But wait. I’m married, I tell him. To a woman. I have kids.

“Well, then, you’re a sodomite lover,” he snarls.

Speaking of blatant homophobia …

5) Hurricane Matthew is still deadly.

The storm itself is long gone, but rising floodwaters have claimed at least two more lives in North Carolina, bringing the state death toll to twenty-two. From the N&O:

The death toll rose by two Thursday as one man fell into a hole created by an uprooted tree in Robeson County and another man died after driving his vehicle around a barricade on a closed road and into a washout. The governor again urged people to stay off the roads in flooded areas and away from the water. The number could climb further.

So, for those of you down east, stay safe.

That’s it. Enjoy the weekend.