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Why Would Anyone Pay $400,000 to Hear Barack Obama Speak?

money-dollar-stacks

The organizers are paying for prestige, not influence.

House Freedom Caucus Backs Health Care Reform Bill That Republicans Haven’t Revealed Yet

Fighting Elephants Two

The House Freedom Caucus is apparently getting behind a revised version of the GOP’s plan to ‘repeal and replace’ the Affordable Care Act, but the GOP hasn’t revealed what the new plan entails.

Trump Drops Demand For Border Wall Funding As Congress Tries To Avoid Government Shutdown

Capitol Buidling Dayime2

With a government shutdown looming at the end of the week, the Administration has appeared to back away from a demand that a government funding bill include money allocated for the President’s promised border wall.

Obama’s $400,000 Speech

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The 44th President will make as for a one-hour speech as his old annual salary. Should we worry about that?

Federal Judge Slaps Down Trump Executive Order On ‘Sanctuary Cities’

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Another Federal Court has found another Trump Executive Order unconstitutional.

Democrats Are More Out Of Step Than Republicans, Poll Says

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Polling indicates that voters find the Democratic Party to be even more out of step than the Republican Party.

Ivanka at the G20 Women’s Summit

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Via the BBC:  Ivanka Trump forced to defend father at G20 women’s summit An audible groan went up as she told the room her father was a “tremendous champion of supporting families and enabling them to thrive”.

Why Hillary Clinton Lost

Clinton, Gates, And Mullen Testify Before Senate Foreign Relations Cmte

Six months after the election, the postmortems of the Clinton campaign all seem to have one thing in common, they all point at things other than the candidate and her campaign as being the reason she lost.

As End Of First Hundred Days Nears, Trump’s Job Approval Continues To Slump

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As he nears the end of his first 100 days in office, President Trump continues to suffer from bad poll numbers.

Jim Comey’s Dilemma

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The FBI Director faced a damned if you do, damned if you don’t choice.

White House Pushing Congress To Revisit Failed Effort To Repeal And Replace Obamacare

United States Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. Aerial

Faced with the fact that it has little to show for its first 100 days in office, the Trump Administration is pressuring Congress to come up with a new health care reform bill before the end of next week.

The Era of Recusal

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“I have decided to recuse myself from any existing or future investigations of any matters related in any way to the campaigns for President of the United States.”–Attorney General, Jeff Sessions. CBS News:  Devin Nunes recuses himself from Russia probe. Fox Business News: As secretary of state, Mr. Tillerson, following through on his pledge to […]

Supreme Court Considers Church-State Separation Case

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The Supreme Court heard oral argument yesterday in a case dealing with whether Missouri can deny a religious school from participating in a program to make school playgrounds safer.

Another Supreme Court Vacancy This Summer?

Supreme Court Building

The Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee is hinting at a new Supreme Court vacancy this summer.

Bill O’Reilly Out At Fox News Channel

Another big change at Fox News Channel.

Carly Fiorina Considering Bid For Senate In Virginia

Virginia Flag Map

Carly Fiorina, who failed in a bid for the Senate against Barbara Boxer in 2010 and also ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2016, is considering a run for Senate in Virginia in 2018: Former Presidential Republican candidate Carly Fiorina is “strongly considering” a run to unseat Hillary Clinton’s former running mate Tim […]

Utah Congressman Jason Chaffetz Won’t Seek Re-Election

United States Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. Aerial

Jason Chaffetz, who has represented Utah’s 3rd Congressional District since first being elected in 2008 and now serves as Chairman of the powerful House Oversight Committee, announced this morning that he would not be seeking re-election: WASHINGTON — Representative Jason Chaffetz, the powerful chairman of the House Oversight Committee, told supporters on Wednesday that he […]

Democrat Falls Short Of Avoiding Runoff In Republican District In Georgia

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Democrats came close to picking up what has been a solidly Republican seat for nearly forty years but ended up falling short. Instead, we’ll have a runoff in two months.

That Didn’t Take Long

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Via Gallup:  Majority in US No Longer Thinks Trump Keeps His Promises.

Trump’s Bad Poll Numbers Are Starting To Impact The GOP

Trump And GOP Elephant

President Trump’s job approval woes are starting to impact the GOP as a whole.

Can States Require Candidates For President To Release Tax Returns? Probably Not.

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States are considering laws that would require candidates for President to release their tax returns, but such laws are probably unconstitutional.

On Impeachment Fantasies, Redux

Trump And GOP Elephant

The previous discussion continued.

On Impeachment Fantasies

Donald Trump Victory

Predicting election outcomes is different than predicting impeachment.

Trudeau Introduces Bill To Legalize Marijuana In Canada

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Fulfilling a promise.

Tensions Rise On Korean Peninsula As North Korea Threatens Another Nuclear Test

Kim Jong Un North Korean Flag

North Korea is threatening another nuclear test, the United States is threatening retaliation, and China is warning of a ‘gathering storm’ on the Korean Peninsula.

U.S.-Russian Relations Hit a New Low

Two powers

It’s been a bad week for U.S.-Russian relations.

Donald Trump Discovers Being President Is Hard

Donald Trump Shrug

Donald Trump seems to be surprised that being President requires actual work.

Trump Undercuts Bannon In Internal White House Power Struggle

Donald Trump Steve Bannon

Inconceivably, Steve Bannon thought that clashing with President Trump’s daughter and son-in-law was a good idea. He’s likely learned his lesson now.

GOP Holds On To House Seat In Heavily Contested Kansas Special Election

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Republicans held on to Mike Pompeo’s seat in the House, but the outcome was closer than many expected.

F.B.I. Obtained FISA Warrant For Top Trump Adviser

Trump Russia

A top Trump campaign adviser was the subject of a FISA warrant for at least part of last year.

White House Press Secretary Opens Mouth, Inserts Both Feet

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White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer put his own feet in his mouth at today’s White House Press Briefing: White House press secretary Sean Spicer, in an effort to shame Russia’s alliance with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his use of chemical weapons, said Tuesday Adolf Hitler “didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons” during […]

Federal Court Finds That Texas Voter ID Law Is Intentionally Discriminatory

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A big win for opponents of Voter ID laws.

Robert Bentley Resigns As Alabama Governor Amid Scandal, Impeachment

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Alabama Governor Robert Bentley resigned from office late yesterday amid a sex scandal that led to impeachment proceedings against him that seemed likely to remove him from office: MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Gov. Robert Bentley resigned Monday rather than face impeachment and pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor campaign violations that arose during an investigation of his […]

Betsy DeVos is “not a numbers person.”

Via WaPo: At a recent public forum, DeVos said her record in office should be graded on expansion of choice-friendly policies. She did not embrace a suggestion that she be judged on academic outcomes. “I’m not a numbers person,” she said. In fairness, that is one phrase and it lacks context. Also in fairness, however, if […]

Neil Gorsuch Sworn In As Associate Justice Of Supreme Court

Judge Gorsuch is sworn in by Supreme Court Associate Justice Kennedy as U.S. President Trump watches in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington

Judge Gorsuch is now Justice Gorsuch and it’s time to hit the ground running.

Poll Finds Majority Support For Missile Strikes On Syria

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A majority of Americans support last week’s airstrikes in Syria but are skeptical of any expansion beyond that.

Gorka: Ignore Trump-the-Businessman’s Tweets

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Via CNN:  WH official: Trump can’t be judged by Syria tweets in 2013 because he wasn’t president then: Deputy assistant to President Donald Trump Sebastian Gorka said Friday that Trump’s past tweets arguing against military action in Syria shouldn’t be held against him because Trump wasn’t president then. “I think you’d admit that the things […]

On the Evolution of SCOTUS

Supreme Court Building

When life terms means almost three decades on the bench, fights will be fierce.

On the History of the Filibuster

Senate Seal

Stop romanticizing the filibuster (and don’t appeal to the intent of the Founders).

Trump Son-In-Law Jared Kushner Failed To Disclose Contact With Russians

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Another member of the Trump Administration failed to disclose contact with Russian officials during the campaign, and this time it’s someone about as close to Trump’s inner circle as you can get: When Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, sought the top-secret security clearance that would give him access to some of the […]

Neil Gorsuch Confirmed As 113th Justice Of The Supreme Court

Neil Gorsuch

After a prolonged vacancy and a bitterly partisan confirmation process, Neil Gorsuch has been confirmed to succeed Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court of the United States.

Mitt Romney Reportedly Considering Bid For Senate In 2018

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Mitt Romney is reportedly considering running for Senate in Utah if Orrin Hatch decides to retire.

Today in “Say What?”

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Via the NYT:  Christian Bale in Talks to Play Dick Cheney in Biopic Also in talks for the still-untitled film about Mr. Cheney, the former vice president, are Steve Carell, who would play Donald Rumsfeld, the former defense secretary, and Amy Adams, who would play Mr. Cheney’s wife, Lynne. I honestly checked the date of the […]

A Disappointing March Jobs Report

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After starting the year with two good months, the jobs report for March was quite disappointing.

Senate Invokes ‘Nuclear Option’ As Gorsuch Nomination Heads To Final Vote

Nuclear Explosion

As expected, Senate Republicans invoked the so-called ‘nuclear option’ to move the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch forward to a final vote on Friday.

Nunes Recuses Himself From Russia Investigation

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Devin Nunes, the California Republican who heads the House Intelligence Committee has removed himself from the committee’s investigation into the Russian interference in the Presidential election and the Trump campaign’s contacts with Russia during the campaign: WASHINGTON — Representative Devin Nunes, the embattled California Republican who is chairman of the Intelligence Committee, announced on Thursday […]

Donald Trump And The Inevitable Foreign Policy Crisis

Donald Trump Inauguration

Donald Trump is historically unpopular for a new President. What does that mean when his first foreign policy crisis comes, as it inevitably will?

Bannon out at NSC

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So reports Bloomberg:  Bannon Removed From National Security Council Role in Shakeup President Donald Trump reorganized his National Security Council on Wednesday, removing his chief strategist, Stephen Bannon, and downgrading the role of his Homeland Security Adviser, Tom Bossert, according to a person familiar with the decision and a regulatory filing. National Security Adviser H.R. […]

Seventh Circuit Rules Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation Barred By 1964 Law

Gavel And Scales Of Justice

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bars discrimination based on sexual orientation, but its reasoning is questionable at best.

Trump Hits Another Job Approval Low As Presidency Marks 75th Day In Office

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Two new polls show Donald Trump hitting new lows in the polls as we get closer to his 100th day in office.

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