Category Archives: Politics

US warns Syria against using chemical weapons…Again…

The Trump Admin has warned of military action again it there is a chemical/gas attack by the Syrian military against opposition troops and civilians….

The White House issued a stern warning to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Monday night as it claimed ‘‘potential’’ evidence that Syria was preparing for another chemical weapons attack.

In an ominous statement issued with no supporting evidence or further explanation, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the US ‘‘has identified potential preparations for another chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime that would likely result in the mass murder of civilians, including innocent children.’’

He said the activities were similar to preparations taken before an April 2017 attack that killed dozens of men, women and children, and warned that if ‘‘Mr. Assad conducts another mass murder attack using chemical weapons, he and his military will pay a heavy price.’’….

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Schumer avoids the spotlight on Senate Russian sanctions Bill….

The NY Times does a piece on how Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer helped the Republican’s draft a bill to tie Trump’s hands  from going ahead and lifting sanctions on the Russians….

Trump IS STILL keen to cozy up with the Russians….

But with Schumer’s assistance the Senate has drafted a bill to take away Trump’s ability to lift sanctions Obama put in place after the 2016 Election and Ukraine actions by the Russians…

This isn’t the first time Schumer has managed to out maneuver Trump & Co. by working quietly with Republicans to fix Congresses muscle separate from Trump’s wishes…

The thinking was that any approach so closely associated with the top Democrat would have trouble attracting Republican votes even though most liked the idea.

“He was very, very helpful,” Mr. Graham said about Mr. Schumer.

The tactic paid off as the sanctions bill passed the Senate with just two dissenters, another example of how lawmakers are occasionally finding bipartisan ways to challenge the Trump administration in those rare times when the interests and goals of the two parties align.

“You have to be strategic, but there are issues when the Republicans are closer to us than to him,” Mr. Schumer said in a recent interview.

The sanctions plan, which has hit a snag in the House, was similar to the approach lawmakers took earlier this year on a major spending bill. They negotiated mainly among themselves and then advanced a bill that the White House didn’t particularly like but found difficult to oppose.

In that case, Mr. Schumer assiduously avoided dealing directly with the White House and worked with congressional Republicans. Lawmakers eventually agreed on a governmentwide spending measure that did not fund top Trump priorities such as a new border wall. But the administration had little choice but to accept the outcome or be responsible for shutting down the government on the occasion of its first 100 days in office…..

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Where can Democrats win House seats?

Nate_Cohn over at the NY Times gives eight types of Republican House districts to watch….

Democrats have debated extensively over whether their path to power goes through the white-working-class Rust Belt states or the diverse, well-educated Sun Belt. In 2018, this debate is moot. The Democrats don’t have the luxury of choosing where to compete in House races. They’ll have to target all of these areas.

The problem for Democrats is simple: There just aren’t many great opportunities for them to pick up seats in Democratic-leaning areas. Instead, they’ll have to compete in a lot of districts where they’re competitive but not favored.

There are probably 70 or so districts where Democrats have a better than 10 percent chance to win if the national political environment is especially favorable to them. To retake the House, Democrats will try to put as many of these seats into play as possible, and hope to end up with the 24 they need.

To illustrate, we’ve divvied up Republican House districts into eight groups to keep an eye on. The groups aren’t strictly based on competitiveness: Within groups, some members are far more vulnerable than others. There are a few districts that don’t fit neatly into any of the groups, and there are a few that fit into several. But the kinds of opportunities and challenges facing Democrats or Republicans in each group are pretty similar…..

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Senate GOP leaders are working on re-writes from their original draft Healthcare Bill rollout…

Their bill will add certain things that the House Bill did NOT have  and will address  complaints from Senate moderates and Insurance company lobbyist ‘s….

My guess is that even with all the noise?

The Senate WILL pass something….

It may not House members happy…(or Senate Conservatives)

But I just do NOT see Much McConnell taking a vote that fail’s…..

Democrats are REALLY out of this….

Winning votes counts…..

Losing makes you a bystander….

Despite the complaints, Republicans are still expecting a vote this week as McConnell aims to reach a conclusion before the July 4 recess, though party whip John Cornyn of Texas said Sunday that August is still the party’s hard deadline.

Most people in the party’s leadership believe that letting the bill hang out over a recess will result in more “no” votes and hurt the GOP’s momentum.

President Donald Trump also suggested that the party could let insurance markets collapse if the bill fails this week.

“Republican Senators are working very hard to get there, with no help from the Democrats. Not easy! Perhaps just let OCare crash & burn!” Trump said in a tweet.

A number of Republican senators have balked at the initial draft of the bill, with several more moderate members blasting it from the center for its strict future Medicaid spending constraints and more conservative senators like Johnson railing against the bill as only a partial repeal of Obamacare.

A White House official said there will be big changes to the bill after the Congressional Budget Office score, which will determine “how much can be given to the moderates.”….

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Supreme’s will review Trump Travel ban in the fall…Allows partial Ok….

Trump gets the expected action from the court…..

A good sized slice of the cake….

But NOT the whole thing….

(People with Visa’s or contacts in the US cannot be banned…)

Trump’s travel ban IS supposed to expire by the time the court has said it would review it in it’s entirety….

The Supreme Court agreed on Monday to allow a limited version of President Trump’s ban on travelers from six mostly Muslim countries to take effect, and will consider in the fall the president’s broad powers in immigration matters in a case that raised fundamental issues of national security and religious discrimination.

The court made an important exception: it said the ban “may not be enforced against foreign nationals who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.”

The court also said in the ruling that it would consider whether the case will be moot by the time it hears it; the ban is supposed to be a temporary one while the government reviews its vetting procedures.

The action means that the administration may impose a 90-day ban on travelers from Libya, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen and a 120-day ban on all refugees entering the United States, with the exceptions noted by the court.

Trump said last week the ban would go into effect 72 hours after receiving an approval from the courts….

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Young Republicans fall to left of their elders on Immigration/Gay Rights…Poll

Would these same young Republicans be considered the ‘moderates’ of the Grand Ole Party that are NOT supposed to exist anymore?

According to the PRRI [ Public Religion Research Institute] poll, 64 percent of all Americans, regardless of political affiliation and age, believe that immigrants in the U.S. illegally should have a path to citizenship if certain conditions are met; only 16 percent say they should be deported. Among Republicans of all ages, support for a path to citizenship is lower, at 55 percent. But when only Republicans between the ages of 18 to 29 are accounted for, that number rises to 62 percent.

The election of President Donald Trump, who pledged to deport millions of immigrants living in the country illegally during the campaign, did not diminish the young Republicans’ hope for a new stance by the GOP….

The age gap among Republicans also surfaces on gay rights: 54 percent of Republicans between 18 and 29 believe that gay and lesbian couples should marry, while half as many Republicans older than 65 agree. Younger GOP supporters are more closely aligned with the majority of Americans than their older counterparts: Overall, 58 percent of Americans support gay marriage. However, they are far from the average among young people of all political leanings: 74 percent of them support gay marriage….

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Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine (R) to run for Governor….

Image result for mike dewine

DeWine’s announcement comes as Gov. John Kasich (R), whose term ends in 2019, has become increasingly more vocal criticizing GOP leadership in Washington, most notably the Republican backed healthcare plan.

Other GOP candidates for the governor’s office include Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Ohio), Ohio Secretary of State John Husted and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor….

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Supreme’s to rule on several immigration cases shortly….

The nine justices are due to rule in six cases, not including their decision expected in the coming days on the travel ban.

Of the remaining cases argued during the court’s current term, which began in October, the most eagerly awaited one concerns a Missouri church backed by a conservative Christian legal group. The ruling potentially could narrow the separation of church and state.

The church sued after being denied state taxpayer funds for a playground improvement project because of a Missouri constitutional provision barring state funding for religious entities.

Trinity Lutheran could be headed for a lopsided win, with two liberal justices joining their conservative colleagues in signaling support during the April oral argument. It was one of the first in which Trump’s conservative appointee to the court, Neil Gorsuch, participated.

The most notable of three immigration-related cases in which rulings are due on Monday is a dispute over whether immigrants detained by the U.S. government for more than six months while deportation proceedings unfold should be able to request their release. The case takes on additional significance with Trump ratcheting up immigration enforcement, placing more people in detention awaiting deportation.

The court also is set to decide a case that could clarify the criminal acts for which legal immigrants may be deported. Another involves whether the family of a Mexican teenager shot dead while standing on Mexican soil by a U.S. Border Patrol agent in Texas can sue for civil rights violations.

As the justices look to finish work before their summer break, they must decide what to do with Trump’s travel ban, which was blocked by lower courts. The administration wants the ban to go into effect while the litigation continues….

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Senate Healthcare Bill Cuts… GOP Voting hunting….Side deals…..GOP Governors NOT happy….

Hold Out  Republican Senator ‘s are working to get deals for their a possible yes vote from Senate GOP Majority leaders….

It may NOT be enough due to Medicaid cuts in the bill that will adversely effect Republican Governors across the country who have actually looked to expand the Obamacare Medicaid program benefits to their states….

Senate Republican leaders scrambled Sunday to rally support for their health care bill as opposition continued to build inside and outside Congress, and as several Republican senators questioned whether it would be approved this week.

President Trump expressed confidence that the bill to repeal the guts of the Affordable Care Act would pass.

“Health care is a very, very tough thing to get,” Mr. Trump said in an interview shown Sunday on Fox News. “But I think we’re going to get it. We don’t have too much of a choice because the alternative is the dead carcass of Obamacare.”

With Democrats solidly opposed to the legislation, Senate Republicans must find the votes from within. They can afford to lose only two votes, but five Republican senators have announced that they cannot support the health care bill as drafted, and others have expressed concerns.

Senate leaders have been trying to lock down Republican votes by funneling money to red states, engineering a special deal for Alaska and arguing that they could insure more people at a lower cost than the House, which passed a repeal bill last month.

But as more analysis of the bill reached state officials, especially in places that expanded Medicaid access under the Affordable Care Act, misgivings grew….

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Note….

Everyone said the House Healthcare Bill wouldn’t make the cut…

After enormous in-house Republican Pressure?

It DID…..

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Boston Mayor Race early poll….Walsh ahead by 31% Points….

Mayor Martin J. Walsh (left) and opponent Tito Jackson gathered signatures last month in Dudley Square.

JOHN CETRINO FOR THE BOSTON GLOBE/FILE

Mayor Martin J. Walsh (left) and opponent Tito Jackson gathered signatures last month in Dudley Square.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh holds a commanding 31-point lead over his closest rival, Councilor Tito Jackson, in a new Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll that shows just how hard it will be to derail Walsh’s reelection bid even as voters are unhappy with the city schools and the cost of housing, and are divided over the state of race relations.

With 14 weeks to go before the Sept. 26 preliminary contest, more than 60 percent of voters surveyed said they view Walsh favorably and approve of the job he is doing as mayor. While many respondents said they also view Jackson favorably, he remains a virtual unknown to almost half of the city’s voters.

Walsh would trounce Jackson if the preliminary contest were held today, 54 percent to 23 percent, with more than 18 percent of registered voters undecided, according to the poll. The incumbent, who is white, came out on top by wide margins in every voter segment, besting Jackson, who is African-American, and two lesser known mayoral competitors.

“The poll shows that even among black voters and Hispanic voters, Walsh is beating Tito Jackson among all categories, race, gender, age, geography,’’….

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Like it or NOT?…Barack Obama is not gonna be a quiet memory….

Image result for obama after presidency

The now ex-President just got finished shodowing Trump around Europe talking their leaders after Trump ….

He has take to defending his Affordable Healthcare program while Republicans seek to turn the program into a tax cut for the rich and cut funding to states Medicaid programs ….

And he seems to be a sometimes target for the Trump….

And in the last few days fellow Democrats…

In small, but visible ways Obama is still very relevant.

He traveled to Europe at the same time as President Trump who there as part of his first foreign trip as president. He then continued his bromance with Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau earlier this month when the two met for a meal in Montreal, the pictures quickly exploding on social media. And then there’s his latest: On Thursday he took to Facebook to write a detailed defence of the Affordable Care Act. Hours later, he agreed to his first post-presidency campaign event — likely a rally for the Democratic candidate for Virginia governor, with no date yet set.

Obama probably didn’t plan for his presidential afterlife to be like this. He might have looked the polls last fall, as most did, and assumed that Hillary Clinton would win. If that had happened, he likely would have instead focused on writing his memoirs, setting up his presidential library, and a giving a few paid speeches around the world.

But, of course, Clinton did not win and the current president has something of a fixation on tearing down Obama’s legacy. This is particularly true when it comes to issues of immigration, health care, the Iran nuclear deal and on the environment.

Compound that with the fact that Donald Trump has had consistently low approval ratings and the Democratic Party is in ruins without any sign of a comeback. Obama, by contrast, left office with the highest approval ratings of any outgoing president since Ronald Reagan. He’s the Democrats best — and perhaps only — effective voice right now.

In the past, the party might have pushed a former president to lie low so as to give the next generation the spotlight. Not this time…..

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Green Party Jill Stein…Post Trump Election Win…

Turns out Stein had a ‘meet and great’ with Putin , just like Mike Flynn….

Oh, those third and fourth national party people!…

Democrats ain’t happy…

Image result for jill stein

So does Stein, with the benefit of hindsight, have any regrets? “I don’t think so,” she tells me by phone from her home in Lexington, Massachusetts. Decrying “fake news,” citing the “sabotage of Bernie Sanders” and talking up the “tremendous” campaign she could have run with more money, Stein is projecting a Trump-worthy level of defiance. “I consider it a great honor that the party and our prior campaign for president is suddenly being attacked outside of an election season,” she says.

Those attacks aren’t merely sour grapes from a party still reeling from its stunning defeat in November. Some Democrats would like to see Stein hauled in front of Congress to explain mysteries like what, exactly, she was doing at a 2015 Moscow gala thrown by a Russian state-owned broadcaster—the same RT event that got Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, in such trouble.

“We’re certainly interested in any efforts the Russians made to influence our election,” says California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, which is investigating Russia’s alleged meddling in the election. “There have been public reports, I think, that Jill Stein was also in Russia attending the RT function, so we’re going to need to look at any efforts the Russians made through whatever means to influence our elections.”

Stein didn’t just attend the gala—dressed in a shimmering silver shawl, she sat at the same table as Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has barely disguised his glee at the political chaos that what he calls “patriotic” Russian hackers have unleashed in the United States. And she recorded a video from Moscow’s famous Red Square, in which she talked about “the need to rein in American exceptionalism” and replace “a U.S. policy based on domination”—words that sounded like they were ripped from Putin’s talking points.

Stein isn’t sorry about any of it. She says she’d welcome the opportunity to testify before Congress and dismisses the idea that she was a spoiler or that her campaign was co-opted as a tool of Russian influence as Democrats’ “pathetic excuses” for losing the election….

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image…time.com

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Graphic comparison of House/Senate Healthcare Bill’s…

Helpful comparison chart

Montel Williams/USA Today, self-styled Reagan conservative:

For seven years, House Speaker Paul Ryan and congressional Republicans told us they had “a better way.” Many voters took them at their word. We’re finding now, however, that Republicans had no replacement plan, instead cobbling one together last minute. Most likely, congressional Republicans believed they’d never have to actually repeal Obamacare. I’m betting many of them are praying that enough colleagues oppose the bill so that it simply dies, allowing them to blame Democratic obstruction.

At the end of the day, I don’t want another tax cut at the expense of another father not being able to get his daughter the lifesaving care I was able to provide my daughter. No father should have to choose between back-breaking debt and his child’s life. That is the inevitable result of the Senate proposal.

Republicans need to own the fact they’ve created a monster by lying to the base for the last seven years. They need to come clean. The truth is that they don’t really think this is a good bill. They are afraid of their own voters, to whom they gave a bad idea as a battle cry…..

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Trump’s Russian Connection isn’t an issue to most Americans…

While the media spends headlines about Trump & Co’s entanglements with the Russians?

Most Americans could care less….

Actually?

Trump could probably sit down in a bar with Putin and most Americans could STILL care less…

Democratic leaders have figured out in the loss of the last 5 special House elections that attacking Trump HIMSELF does virtually nothing…

Americans Democrats and Republicans KNOW their President doesn’t stick to the facts, they know he gets few things actually done…

But Trump political strength seems to be the he rants against the status quo that most of us feel in dealing with our everyday lives in a country of 300 million plus, that has a LOT of ways to get in our paychecks….

Democrats tend to talk about the ideology of helping those who need government help….Trump has money and continues to make money off BEING President….

Middle Class people and Rich ones LIKE that…

Remember all those stories we did here and out in the media about how the demographics of America was changing?

Well, they ARE….

Trump and Republican efforts to close the door on the changes won’t stop them…

And voters of the above classes won’t change things either….

 

Democrats will have to do things the ‘old fashion way’ as the commercial used to say…

‘They will have to EARN IT’…

That means reaching for the hearts and minds of the Middle Class voters that left Hillary Clinton last year, and had started leaving Barack Obama 8 years ago…

And THAT means the economy and yea….’feel your pain’ stuff for people who actually vote…Not just have the time to protest…

“We can’t just talk about Russia because people back in Ohio aren’t really talking that much about Russia, about Putin, about Michael Flynn,” Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) told MSNBC Thursday. “They’re trying to figure out how they’re going to make the mortgage payment, how they’re going to pay for their kids to go to college, what their energy bill looks like.

“And if we don’t talk more about their interest than we do about how we’re so angry with Donald Trump and everything that’s going on,” he added, “then we’re never going to be able to win elections.”

Ryan is among the small group of Democrats who are sounding calls for a changing of the guard atop the party’s leadership hierarchy following Tuesday’s special election defeat in Georgia — the Democrats’ fourth loss since Trump took office. But Ryan is hardly alone in urging party leaders to hone their 2018 message.

Rep. Tim Walz (D-Minn.) has been paying particularly close attention to voters’ concerns because he’s running for governor in 2018. The Russia-Trump investigation, he said, isn’t on their radar.

“I did a 22-county tour. … Nobody’s focusing on that,” Walz said. “That’s not to say that they don’t think Russia and those things are important, [but] it’s certainly not top on their minds.”

Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) delivered a similar message, saying his constituents are most concerned with two things: dysfunction in Washington and the Republicans’ plans to repeal ObamaCare. The controversies surrounding Trump, he said, don’t tally.

“We should be focused relentlessly on economic improvement [and] we should stay away from just piling on the criticism of Trump, whether it’s about Russia, whether it’s about Comey. Because that has its own independent dynamic, it’s going to happen on its own without us piling on,“ Welch said. …

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That also means that the party does NOT go running to the left on everything….

In the end?

Donald Trump is either gonna tweet himself out of a job?

Or….

Robert Mueller will pull the legs out from under him so that his party members in Congress abandon him…

But the Russian brake is coming from his OWN party members and Mueller with help from the Intelligence Community that he dissed without realizing that THEY where watching ALL the things he and buddies had be hiding from the public….

Payback, eh?

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Who needs to spy on Trump?…Just check his twitter feed…

Oh, and Twitter lucked out BIG TIME, eh?

It’s a brand new game …..

Why even have a Press Sec?

Even they have been reduced to following their boss’s tweets to find out his view on things….

And of course he doesn’t heed his lawyers and advisors warnings to stop giving judges ammo to rule against his own comments and admissions on line….

But that’s Donald Trump people…

He ain’t gonna listen…

He ain’t gonna change…

Nada Bakos: “Every time President Trump tweets, journalists and Twitter followers attempt to analyze what he means. Intelligence agencies around the world do, too: They’re trying to determine what vulnerabilities the president of the United States may have. And he’s giving them a lot to work with.”

“Trump’s Twitter feed is a gold mine for every foreign intelligence agency. Usually, intelligence officers’ efforts to collect information on world leaders are methodical, painstaking and often covert. CIA operatives have risked their lives to learn about foreign leaders so the United States could devise strategies to counter our adversaries. With Trump, though, secret operations are not necessary to understand what’s on his mind: The president’s unfiltered thoughts are available night and day, broadcast to his 32.7 million Twitter followers immediately and without much obvious mediation by diplomats, strategists or handlers.”

Politicalwire…

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Justice Kennedy thinking around retiring from the Supreme’s?

Image result for justice kennedy

Democrats worst fears for the nation’s highest court….

Sources close to Justice Anthony Kennedy tell CNN that he “is seriously considering retirement, but they are unclear if it could occur as early as this term.”

“His departure would cause a seismic shift and offer President Donald Trump a chance to continue reshaping the court. Trump’s first nominee — Justice Neil Gorsuch, himself a former Kennedy clerk — joined the court earlier this year.”…

Politicalwire….

image…politico

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