Posts Tagged ‘Republicans’

Hey GOP, why aren’t we filing taxes on a postcard?

April 10, 2019

Remember all those times Republicans promised you’d be filing your Federal Income Taxes on postcard? The 1040 may be physically smaller, but it’s 2-sided, and you’ll have to attach a bunch of other new forms to it. Instructions for the 1040 total 117 pages. After all, it’s not like they shrank the tax code, just the tax rates for the 1 Percent.

A Vox video by Madeline Marshall and Matthew Yglesias.

Related:

“Only 17 Percent of Americans Think They’re Benefiting From Trump’s 2017 Tax Cut,” Daily Beast

“Survey: Few people think they’re getting a tax cut under Trump’s law,” Naomi Jagoda, The Hill

“Congress Is About to Ban the Government From Offering Free Online Tax Filing. Thank TurboTax.” Justin Elliott, ProPublica

“The Tax Law’s Big Winner Is the Millionaire CEO,” Joe Light, Bloomberg

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Trump Will Take 2 Years to Reunite Separated Families

April 9, 2019

Trump Will Take 2 Years to Reunite Separated Families

The Justice Department has told a judge it will take at least two years to find out how many of the 47,000 children DHS locked up at the Mexican border were separated from their families by the government. The kids were jailed between July 1, 2017 and June 25, 2018 before U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw ordered the Trump Administration to stop the “Zero Tolerance” practice of baby snatching and reunite the families.

The plaintiff in the case, the ACLU, is understandably upset with the timeline, as are psychologists who treat separated children. Or anyone, really, except Stephen Miller.

More:

“U.S. Says It Could Take 2 Years to Identify Up to Thousands of Separated Immigrant Families,” Victor J. Blue, New York Times

“It may take 2 years to identify thousands of separated families, government says,” Catherine E. Shoichet and Priscilla Alvarez, CNN

“The Long-Term Damage of Trump’s War on Immigrants,” Chas Danner, New York Magazine

Updates:

“Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen leaving Trump administration amid surge of migrants,” Nick Miroff, Josh Dawsey, Seung Min Kim, and Maria Sacchetti, Washington Post

“Kirstjen Nielsen Was Heartless, but Not Heartless Enough for Trump,” Michael Tomasky,
Daily Beast

“Stephen Miller pressuring Trump officials amid immigration shakeups,” Anita Kumar, Gabby Orr, and Daniel Lippman, Politico

“Inside Trump adviser Stephen Miller’s grand plan to ‘clean house’ at the DHS,” Brendan Morrow, The Week

Related:

“Trump’s possibly illegal designation of a new acting homeland security secretary, explained,” Matthew Yglesias, Vox

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Health Care Fraudster Leads Trump Health Care Push

April 3, 2019

Health Care Fraudster Leads Trump Health Care Push

Florida Senator (and former Governor) Rick Scott is leading the charge to develop President Trump’s ObamaCare (ACA) replacement. Mr. Scott certainly has plenty of health care experience. He was President and CEO of the Columbia/HCA hospital system when the corporation committed at least 14 federal felonies for defrauding Medicare and Medicaid. The firm later admitted guilt and paid the government $1.7 billion in criminal fines, civil damages, and penalties.

Senator Scott is, without doubt, the ideal person to spearhead a Trump Administration health care initiative.

More:

“Rick Scott’s Company Committed Historic Medicare Fraud. He Will Now Lead Trump’s Health-Care Push.” Matt Stieb, New York Magazine

“Trump’s Choice of Rick Scott to Build a Republican Healthcare Plan Shows the Henhouse Is Full of Foxes,” Charles P. Pierce, Esquire

“The worst possible choice to craft a Senate health-care plan? Rick Scott.” Editorial, Orlando Sentinel

“Trump putting Rick Scott in charge of his healthcare push is a sick joke,” Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times

Updates:

Even Rick Scott won’t carry this hot potato for him, so President Trump now says he’ll run for re-election on a GOP Healthcare Plan to replace the ACA in 2020.

“Trump’s health care brain trust says no thanks,” Adam Cancryn and Alice Miranda Ollstein, Politico

Related:

“Trump’s Health-Care Policy Goes From Misguided to Reckless,” Max Nisen, Bloomberg

“Trump just realized his mistake on health care. But it’s too late.” Paul Waldman, Washington Post

“Democrats welcome fight as Trump tees up 2020 healthcare battle,” Susan Heavey and Susan Cornwell, Reuters

“Republican Health Care Lying Syndrome,” Paul Krugman, New York Times

“Americans are much more worried about health care than illegal immigration, poll shows,” Tim O’Donnell, The Week

“The GOP’s capitulation to Obamacare,” Aaron Blake, Washington Post

“Trump now promises a Republican health-care bill in [checks notes] 2021,” Philip Bump, Washington Post

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Here Comes TrumpCare

March 28, 2019

Here Comes TrumpCare

Fresh from being not exonerated, legal titan Donald Trump has decided that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, probably because the ACA is often called “ObamaCare.” After conferring with Dr. Mick Mulvaney and senior faculty at Trump University Medical School, the President proposes replacing the ACA with … nothing.

While this will leave 20 million Americans without health insurance and put 100 million at risk, people with preexisting conditions will get exactly the same coverage.

More:

“Trump Administration reverses course, supports decision to strike down ACA,” Kevin Truong, MedCityNews

“White House Obamacare reversal made over Cabinet objections,” Eliana Johnson and Burgess Everett, Politico

“Trump’s all-or-nothing ACA gamble,” Sam Baker, Axios

“The Trump approach to healthcare: Break it and figure out the rest later,” Jon Healey, Los Angeles Times

“Trump: GOP will have replacement if Obamacare is struck down, but no plan is in sight,” John T. Bennett, The Hill

“McConnell to Trump: Health care’s all yours,” Burgess Everett, Politico

“Kevin McCarthy tells Trump new health care push makes no sense,” Jonathan Swan, Sam Baker, and Alayna Treene, Axios

“Donald Trump is very committed to taking away your health insurance,” Sarah Kliff, Vox

“Health insurer stocks fall after Trump administration seeks overturn of Affordable Care Act,” Bertha Coombs, CNBC

Updates:

“Trump’s health care agenda is a legal disaster,” Dylan Scott, Vox

“By striking at Obamacare, Trump could unravel his own drug pricing proposal,” Emily Kopp, Roll Call

(more…)

Adam Schock Legal Shocker

March 8, 2019

Adam Schock Legal Shocker

Adam Schock, the disgraced former GOP congressman, fraudster, and ticket scalper indicted on 24 felony counts, reached a sweetheart deal with Federal prosecuters in Chicago on Wednesday without actually pleading guilty. He agreed to pay a $25,000 FEC fine, will repay his campaign committees $67,956, and fork over unpaid 2010–2015 taxes and taxes on the $42,375 he made by scalping sports tickets. Mr. Schock has already repaid Congress $40,000 for redecorating his House office as Downton Abbey and $88,000 in phony mileage expense claims. In the “deferred prosecution” arrangement, if Aaron Schock doesn’t re-offend for six months, charges will be dropped and his criminal record wiped clean. He won’t rule out another run for public office.

It did not go unnoticed that Mr. Schock, the Prince of Peoria, avoided jail time, while another former Illinois Congrssman, Jesse Jackson Jr., was sentenced to 30 months in prison for misusing campaign funds.

More:

“Ex-congressman Aaron Schock strikes deal to avert prosecution,” Matt Zapotosky, Washington Post

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Matt Whitaker: 5 Minute Man

February 11, 2019

Matt Whitaker: 5 Minute Man

Acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker, the temp employee Donald Trump installed as the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, appeared before the House Judiciary Committee last week. He had agreed to answer five minutes of questions from each committee member, but what he did was run out the clock. Instead of answering a question from Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D, NY-10), Mr. Whitaker replied “Mr. Chairman, I see that your five minutes is up.”

Running out the clock is really Acting AG Whitaker’s only job right now. William Barr is expected to be confirmed as a real Attorney General this week. If not, Mr. Whitaker may be subpoenaed to a second House Judiciary Committee meeting.

After the hearing Matt Whitaker celebrated by heading straight to Disney Land the new Department of Justice headquarters, the Trump Hotel.

More:

“Matthew Whitaker’s five minutes are up,” Dana Milbank, Washington Post

“The most powerful moment of the Whitaker hearing had nothing to do with Mueller,” Aaron Rupar, Vox

“Matthew Whitaker Apparently Only Owns One Tie,” Joe Patrice, Above the Law

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Trump Prepares National Emergency Declaration

January 30, 2019

Trump Prepares National Emergency Declaration

After temporarily freeing the 800,000 hostages and temporarily reopening the federal government after six weeks of shutdown, President Donald Trump is said to be preparing a Declaration of National Emergency in case Congress doesn’t give him $5.7 billion for his border wall by Valentine’s Day. He’ll declare an emergency because of the grave threat of invasion by savage caravans of duct-tape-wielding rapists at the US-Mexico border. Funding for the wall will come from Mexico Trump’s daddy Deutsche Bank Russian oligarchs the loose change under the Pentagon‘s couch cushions, and money slated for 50 disaster relief projects including some in Texas and Florida, states that voted for Trump in 2016. The man is a political genius.

More:

“Legal and practical hurdles would await Trump emergency declaration,” Wesley Morgan, Politico

“A ‘National Emergency’ Is Not An Option To Save Trump From Failure,” Elie Mystal, Above the Law

“The US border situation isn’t a national emergency, Pentagon officials tell Congress,” Heather Timmons, Quartz

Updates:

“‘I want him to declare an emergency’: Eric Trump urges his father to use executive power to build a border wall,” Timothy Bella, Washington Post

“Trump: ‘Good Chance’ I’ll Declare National Emergency for Border Wall,” Daily Beast

“Trump teases national emergency declaration could come during SOTU,” John T. Bennett, Roll Call

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It’s On! State of the Union, February 5th.

January 29, 2019

It's On! State of the Union, February 5th.

After yanking the rug out from under Donald Trump’s January 2019 State of the Union address, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi invited the president to harangue a joint session of Congress on February 5th and he accepted.

Attention new members of Congress: each of you may invite one guest to observe the State of the Union from the visitors’ balcony. One of you must invite Stephanie Clifford, a Republican and a working Mom also known as Stormy Daniels. She even knows the guy who’ll be talking.

Related:

“Democrats tap Georgia’s Stacey Abrams to deliver the response to Trump’s State of the Union address,” Felicia Sonmez, Washington Post

“The State of the Union is … perhaps outdated?” Jason Dick, Roll Call

Updates:

“Undocumented Immigrant Who Worked for Trump Will Attend His State of the Union,” Matt Stevens, New York Times

“Capitol Police announce street closures, restrictions for State of the Union address,” Michael Burke, The Hill

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Trump Administration Lost Thousands More Migrant Children

January 22, 2019

Trump Administration Lost Thousands More Migrant Children

A report from the DHS Office of the Inspector General finds that an unknown number of children, possibly thousands, were separated from parents at the US-Mexico border before the May 2018 “Zero Tolerance” family separation policy was announced, but weren’t been included in official government tallies of separated families. The kids in the OIG report were placed in foster care but haven’t been reunited with their parents because the Trump Administration lost them. A court ordered migrant family reunification in June 2018.

NBC found a draft of a December 2017 memo indicating that DHS and DOJ were planning the family separations well before Sessions’ “Zero Tolerance” announcement. That’s troubling for DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen who told the House Judiciary Committee, in sworn testimony on December 2018, “We’ve never had a policy for family separation.” Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) has called on the FBI to open a perjury investigation of Secretary Neilsen.

More:

“Thousands more migrant children separated under Trump than previously known,” Amanda Holpuch, The Guardian

Related:

“Trump’s health secretary refuses Democrats’ request to testify on separated kids,” Dan Diamond, Politico

Updates:

“Mexico won’t accept minors awaiting US asylum claims,” Associated Press

“No one at this child separation hearing knows how many children are still separated,” Kathryn Krawczyk, The Week

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DC Shut Down? The GOP Does Davos.

January 15, 2019

DC Shut Down? The GOP Does Davos.

The president has shut down the U.S. government by refusing to authorize federal spending, but presidential aides and cabinet officials are spending $3-4 million and change to go to the World Economic Forum at Davos, kind of a Coachella for billionaires and financial heavies at a resort in the Swiss Alps.  Administration figures scheduled to attend include: Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.

U.S. officials at Davos will have a significant weight lifted from their shoulders at this year’s WEF. Unlike last year, President Donald Trump will not attend. Swiss protesters must be crestfallen.

More:

“Trump’s team is still running up bills for Davos during the government shutdown,” Justin Rohrlich and Heather Timmons, Quartz

“Davos, other Swiss ski resorts warned of high avalanche danger,” Xinhua

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