Posts Tagged ‘GOP’

In-N-Out Burger Pisses off Half of California

September 14, 2018

In-N-Out Burger Pisses off Half of California
California fast-food favorite, In-N-Out Burger, recently dished up something controversial on it’s secret menu: a $25,000 political contribution to the California Republican Party. That’s not all that surprising, given the religious conservatism of the family-owned business, but California Democrats found it hard to swallow, and some vowed to boycott the burger chain.

But wait, don’t put down that Double-Double. In-N-Out Burger also gave at least $50,000 to Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy, an outfit that aims to elect business-friendly Democrats to the state legislature.

So enjoy your drive-thru burger, Democrats. You want fries with that?

More:

“‘I’m gonna buy my staff In-N-Out,’ says top California Democrat who led calls for boycott,” Eric Ting, San Francisco Chronicle

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Trump Administration Seeks Indefinite Detention of Migrant Children

September 7, 2018

Trump Administration Seeks Indefinite Detention of Migrant Children

In July U.S. District Judge Dolly M. Gee held that the federal government violated the 1997 Flores settlement by detaining immigrant children seeking asylum for more than 20 days. There are still 500 children in government-run shelters, so naturally the Trump Administration wants to change the rules and do an end-run around Flores. HHS and DHS submitted a Proposed Rule this morning that would allow the indefinite detention of child asylum seekers. “Indefinite” as in “maybe forever,” or until the kids grow up and are old enough to deport.

Other provisions of the new rule would allow children and families to be held in facilities that haven’t been approved for state or local licenses, give facilities “emergency” loopholes for not meeting standards of care, revoke legal protections for unaccompanied migrant children.

More:

“Trump Administration Moves to Sidestep Restrictions on Detaining Migrant Children,” Caitlin Dickerson, New York Times

“Trump seeks changes in landmark agreement limiting how long migrant children can be detained,” Victoria Kim, Los Angeles Times

“Don’t Let Migrant Kids Rot,” New York Times editorial

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Donald Trump, Banana Republican

September 4, 2018

Donald Trump, Banana Republican

On Monday President Trump attacked Attorney General Jeff Sessions for the Federal indictments of two sitting Republican congressmen, both strong Trump supporters:

Republican Senator Ben Sasse, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, responded: to the President’s partisan attack on the rule of law:

“The United States is not some banana republic with a two-tiered system of justice – one for the majority party and one for the minority party. These two men have been charged with crimes because of evidence, not because of who the President was when the investigations began. Instead of commenting on ongoing investigations and prosecutions, the job of the President of the United States is to defend the Constitution and protect the impartial administration of justice.”

“This is not the conduct of a President committed to defending and upholding the constitution,” tweeted Arizona Republican Senator Jeff Flake, “but rather a President looking to use the Department of Justice to settle political scores.”

Contrary to Mr. Trump’s tweet, at least one of the investigations began during his own administration. Rep. Christopher Collins (R, NY-27) is charged with participating in an insider trading scheme, and phoned insider stock tips while picnicking on the White House lawn in June 2017. He has denied wrongdoing but is not seeking re-election. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R, CA-50) and his wife were indicted for allegedly using campaign funds to pay for personal expenses. Mr. Hunter is still on the midterm ballot.

More:

“Trump Twitter attack on Sessions and Justice is most serious impeachment fodder yet,” Chris Truax, USA Today

“Trump’s Attacks on Jeff Sessions and the DOJ Are Reaching Absurd New Levels,” Ryan Bort, Rolling Stone

“Trump sets up rule-of-law crisis,” Jonathan Swan, Axios

“The Proud Corruption of Donald Trump,” David A. Graham, The Atlantic

“Sorry, Mr. Trump, the Attorney General Is America’s Lawyer,” New York Times editors

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Image: Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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He’s Number 1!

August 22, 2018

He's Number 1!

U.S. President Donald J.Trump has been implicated by Michael Cohen, his former attorney, in violating campaign finance law. In Mr. Cohen’s plea agreement, the unindicted co-conspirator in the White House is simply identified as “Individual-1.”

“Of all the things Trump has been called, ‘Individual 1’ may be the most damaging,” John Dickerson, CBS News

More:

“How Michael Cohen’s guilty plea implicates Trump,” Sam Baker, Axios

“Michael Cohen Attorney: ‘Donald Trump Directed Him To Commit A Crime,’” Matt Shuham, TPM Livewire

“With Michael Cohen’s Guilty Plea, President Trump Has Been Implicated in a Criminal Conspiracy,” Adam Davidson, The New Yorker

“‘He’s Unraveling’: Why Cohen’s Betrayal Terrifies Trump,” Michael Kruse, Politico

Related:

“Cohen Has ‘Knowledge’ of Ru,ssia Campaign Conspiracy, Lawyer Says,” Shannon Pettypiece,  Jennifer Jacobs , and Terrence Dopp, Bloomberg

“Is Donald Trump Above the Law?” James Risen, The Intercept

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Manafort: Guilty. Now for the next trial. Oh, and Michael Cohen.

August 22, 2018
Manafort: Guilty. Now for the next trial. Oh, and Michael Cohen.

Paul Manafort’s new LinkedIn photo.

Former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort has been found guilty of filing false income tax returns, failing to report his foreign bank accounts, and bank fraud, 8 counts in all, carrying a combined maximum penalty of 80 years in prison. The jury could not reach unanimity on the remaining 10 counts, and Judge T.S. Ellis declared mistrials on those, meaning prosecutors may ask for a new trial on those counts. Mr. Manafort’s next federal trial begins on September 17th in Washington DC on charges alleging he acted as an unregistered foreign agent and additional fraud charges. Paul Manafort is the fourth former Trump aide to be convicted of crimes charged by special counsel Robert Mueller.

In unrelated GOP crime news, Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s longtime personal lawyer, pleaded guilty today to income tax evasion, making an unlawful corporate campaign contribution, bank fraud, and making an excessive campaign contribution, 8 counts in all. While combined penalties could  total as much as 65 years imprisonment, this plea deal means Mr. Cohen probably faces up to 5 years in prison. The plea agreement does not preclude him from providing information to special counsel Mueller, a deal that would involve sentence reduction. In his plea, Mr. Cohen said he made the illegal campaign payments – hush money – at the direction of a presidential candidate. Sentencing is scheduled for December 12th.

More:

“Michael Cohen says he worked to silence two women ‘in coordination’ with Trump to influence 2016 election,” Devlin Barrett, Carol D. Leonnig, and Renae Merle, Washington Post

“Why Donald Trump can’t distance himself from Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, in one tweet,” Dara Lind, Vox

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Manafort Trial Begins

July 31, 2018
Manafort Trial Begins

Paul Manafort’s new LinkedIn photo.

The first federal trial of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort begins today. This is his trial for money laundering, bank fraud, and related charges resulting from Mr. Manafort’s unregistered lobbying and consulting for Russia-backed candidate Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine’s 2010 presidential election.

In this trial, with one exception, we don’t expect to hear any references to the defendant’s role in Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign, or his presence at the now-infamous Trump Tower meeting with Russian operatives, but there are certain to be juicy details about the lavish lifestyle funded by Paul Manafort’s questionable gains.

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Paul Ryan Shrugged

July 30, 2018

Paul Ryan Shrugged

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R, WI-1) has been a vocal deficit hawk for his entire congressional career, frightened inspired at an early age by conservative icon Ayn Rand, whose “Objectivist” pronunciamentos decried federal deficit financing. When Mr. Ryan became speaker in 2015, the deficit was $439 billion. When he leaves Congress in January, the massive tax cuts for corporations and the rich he championed will have ballooned the deficit to $1.2 trillion, and his tax cuts promise similar deficit increases for years to come. Ayn Rand must be rolling in her grave.

More:

“When Paul Ryan leaves government, the federal deficit will be $1.2 trillion higher than when he arrived,” Philip Bump, Washington Post

“Paul Ryan’s Legacy of Red Ink,” Michael Grunwald, Politico

“Paul Ryan’s Sad Legacy,” Derek Thompson, The Atlantic

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Ivanka Abandons Asian Sweatshops For White House

July 24, 2018

Ivanka Abandons Asian Sweatshops For White House

Sweatshop shmata merchant and celebrity nanny-employer mom Ivanka Trump has decided to pull the plug on her failing imported fashion brand in order to concentrate on wielding her undefined influence in her Daddy’s White House. Pop’s tariffs spared her trademarked Chinese-made products, but women aren’t buying them, stores won’t carry them, and online purchases have tanked. This champion of working women is laying off her Ivanka brand staff of 19 women in New York.

Even though Ms. Trump isn’t paid for whatever-the-hell it is she does in the executive mansion, she won’t go broke. Last year she earned $3.9 million from the lobbyist- and diplomat-infested Trump International Hotel a few blocks down Pennsylvania Avenue.

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Mad for Vlad, Trump Invites Putin To Washington

July 23, 2018

Mad for Vlad, Trump Invites Putin To Washington
President Donald Trump so enjoyed his successful Helsinki meeting with Vladimir Putin that he’s sent a message to the Russian strongman inviting him to the White House this fall. Great, another damn sequel. Perhaps Russian oligarchs could use the occasion to hold a GOP fundraiser in DC — it wouldn’t be the first for some of them.

Mr. Putin may be welcome at the White House and the Trump Hotel, but he can forget about addressing a joint session of Congress. Maybe he can pop across the Potomac to visit his fans at the NRA instead.

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Showtime!

July 9, 2018

Showtime!

It’s spectacle showtime for charlatan-in-chief Donald Trump, who’ll select his prime-time pick for America’s next top model Supreme Court justice tonight at 9PM Eastern. Suspense mounts! Which conservative ideologue will win? Who will go home with a consolation prize?

More:

“How Trump turned the US Supreme Court into prime time television,” Ephrat Livni, Quartz

“Trump pushing for another reality-show reveal of Supreme Court pick,” Andrew Restuccia, Politico

“A ‘Supreme’ show: Trump savors big reveal for court choice,” BY Catherine Lucey and Zeke Miller, AP via Charlotte Observer

“Trump’s New Pageant: SCOTUS Pick Will Have To Look ‘All-American,’ Jibe With Trump,” Nicole LaFond, TPM Livewire

“Trump Is Picking His Supreme Court Nominee Like He’s Casting the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition,” Bess Levin, Vanity Fair

“The Supreme Court Show,” Ross Douthat, New York Times

“The most interesting late development in Trump’s Supreme Court derby,” Aaron Blake, Washington Post

Inside Baseball:

“The Five Frontrunners,” Adam Feldman, Empirical SCOTUS

“Trump’s 2018 Supreme Court Shortlist and Their Views on Administrative Law,” Chris Walker, Notice & Comment

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Top image (“Let’s Make a Supreme Deal!”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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