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Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 09:54 PM
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Attorney General William Barr dining at the Trump hotel is a bad look


Attorney General William Barr dining at the Trump hotel is a bad look
Barr was photographed at the Trump International on a night when it hosted a pro-Trump Super PAC.
By Aaron Rupar@atrupar May 23, 2019, 11:20am EDT

Attorney General William Barr was photographed dining at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, on Wednesday night — a business his boss, President Donald Trump, still owns and profits from, and one that has become something of a de facto clubhouse for businesspeople and government officials looking to curry favor with the president.

Zach Everson, who reports on conflicts of interest stemming from the Trump International Hotel, tweeted that it was his “first time seeing Barr” at the hotel.

Trump was also at the hotel for an event hosted by America First Action, the Super PAC supporting his reelection. CNN’s Jeremy Diamond reported that the plan was for Trump to address “high-dollar donors” who have contributed to his reelection effort.

ABC’s Ali Dukakis snapped a photo of Barr dining at a restaurant in the hotel.

Barr has now taken things further and patronized the president’s business on the same night of an event meant to help his reelection campaign. That the Lynch-Clinton meeting was a huge scandal and Barr’s trip to the Trump International isn’t reflects the extent to which the Trump administration has normalized corruption.
Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 05:43 PM (2 replies)

Afghanistan Vet Mayor Pete Buttigieg Says Trump Faked a Disability to Get Out of Vietnam

Afghanistan Vet Mayor Pete Buttigieg Says Trump Faked a Disability to Get Out of Vietnam

Democratic hopeful said the president used his ‘privileged status’ to avoid the draft and send someone else to war in his place.
Scott Bixby
05.23.19 11:32 AM ET


“I don’t have a problem standing up to somebody who was working on season seven of Celebrity Apprentice when I was packing my bags for Afghanistan,” he said.

Costa then asked Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, if Trump should have served.

“I have a pretty dim view of his decision to use his privileged status to fake a disability in order to avoid serving in Vietnam,” Buttigieg replied. When Costa asked if Buttigieg believed that Trump “faked” the bone spurs in his heels to avoid the draft, the mayor rhetorically asked if “you believe he has a disability?”

As the audience chucked, Buttigieg protested that the dig was not meant as a joke.

“Needless to say, the way that [Trump] has treated and mocked disabled people is just one more example of the many affronts to basic decency that this president has inflicted on this country,” Buttigieg said, before refocusing on Trump’s Vietnam-era medical exemption.

“If he were a conscientious objector, I’d admire that,” Buttigieg said. “But this is somebody who, I think it’s fairly obvious to most of us, took advantage of the fact that he was the child of a multi-millionaire in order to pretend to be disabled so that somebody could go to war in his place.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 04:23 PM (17 replies)

Assange Indicted Under Espionage Act


Assange Indicted Under Espionage Act
May 23, 2019 at 4:05 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard

“Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks leader, has been indicted on 17 new counts of violating the Espionage Act for his role in publishing classified military and diplomatic documents in 2010, the Justice Department announced on Thursday — a novel case that raises profound First Amendment issues,” the New York Times reports.

“The new charges were part of a superseding indictment obtained by the Trump administration that significantly expanded the legal case against Mr. Assange, who is already fighting extradition proceedings in London based on an earlier hacking-related count brought by federal prosecutors in Northern Virginia.”

The Daily Beast called it a “stunning escalation of the Trump administration’s war on the press.”
Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 04:17 PM (20 replies)

Trump Owns Washington Gridlock


Trump Owns Washington Gridlock
May 23, 2019 at 8:55 am EDT By Taegan Goddard

First Read: “By telling Democrats that he won’t work on items like infrastructure until they end their investigations into him, President Trump on Wednesday took ownership of Washington’s gridlock.”

“That’s a dangerous place for any American president, especially one facing re-election a year from now. In fact, it’s pretty similar to when Trump took ownership of a government shutdown in that meeting last December with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.”

“It’s a given that it’s more difficult to get things done in Washington when there’s divided government… Trying makes it easier to at least share the gridlock. Not trying, however, makes you own it.”
Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 09:00 AM (1 replies)

Rick Wilson: Pelosi's Strategy Is Working, and Trump Is One Step Closer to Being F*cked

Pelosi’s Strategy Is Working, and Trump Is One Step Closer to Being F*cked
Democrats who want impeachment yesterday aren’t paying attention. Between McGahn, the ruling on taxes, and Cohen, the Resistance has had a banner week.
Rick Wilson
05.21.19 4:05 PM ET


“But damn it, Wilson, why can’t we get on with fucking Trump? Doesn’t he deserve it? Haven’t we waited long enough?”

I feel your pain and frustration, but unless you convict him in the Senate and destroy his political future, you’re not fucking anyone; you’re just enjoying a masturbatory revenge fantasy. Democrats are making an argument on the impact of impeachment hearings based largely on magical political thinking.

This isn’t the Watergate era. Not a single Republican vote beyond Justin Amash can be guaranteed in the House, and the Senate landscape is entirely bleak. Until you can get to two-thirds of the Senate for a conviction, impeachment means nothing.

For all that, the Democrats chomping at the bit to hold Trump to account are having a good week already, whether they know it or not. It’s so good, they’d be fools not to keep doing the things that are starting to work—the exercise of congressional power, the use of the courts to uphold the law, and the momentum building in the public mind for an accounting of Trump’s full-spectrum lawbreaking, contempt, obstruction, and corruption.

The Pelosi-Nadler strategy is starting to shift that political battlefield, and the legal landscape is breaking in their favor. The judicial branch isn’t yet a wholly owned subsidiary of Trump, Inc. Yet. Trump’s own mistakes are helping move the investigation strategy forward and are beginning to ensure that when Congress does start getting testimony and documents from the White House and Department of Justice, Trump will have painted himself into a corner he can’t tweet his way out of.

Even without impeachment proceedings on deck yet, here’s why this week is shaping up well for the Resistance.


Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 08:13 AM (29 replies)

Pelosi to Impatient Dems: We've Got Trump on the Ropes

Pelosi to Impatient Dems: We’ve Got Trump on the Ropes
‘Even this impeachment inquiry is the same f*cking process,’ said one senior Democratic aide. ‘You will still end up in the courts.’
Sam Stein, Sam Brodey
05.22.19 9:00 PM ET

Shortly after she’d left a fiery White House meeting, during which the president had threatened to stop working with her on all legislative matters, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) was asked to speculate why she, more than others, seemed to fluster President Trump.

“He recognizes the unity of our caucus and that is a very big deal,” she told the crowd at the Center for American Progress’ annual Ideas Festival. “I think he sees the fact that we are united as something he has to contend with, to deal with… That unity gives me leverage.”

The comment drew knowing applause from those in attendance—a mix of policy types and party donors who uniformly worship at the altar of Pelosi. But the intended audience was not them. It was her fellow Democrats on Capitol Hill.

In recent weeks, the party unity that Pelosi prizes internally and deploys politically has come under immense strain as a growing number of lawmakers have demanded more aggressive oversight of the Trump administration, including the consideration of articles of impeachment. The pressure had grown acute enough in recent days that Pelosi’s staff decided to convene a caucus meeting on Wednesday morning to address it.

The task of calming nerves was supposed to fall to Doug Letter, the House Democrat’s general counsel. But he was busy dealing with one of the party’s growing list of lawsuits against the Trump administration. And so, the speaker turned it over to relevant committee chairs to lay out the investigative progress they’d made to soothe their more anxious colleagues.

According to those in attendance, the chairs did an effective job. Though lawmakers like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) spoke up afterward to relay fears that the party may look back and realize it did vanishingly little at a political crisis point, others encouraged lawmakers to trust Pelosi’s more deliberate process. Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) stressed that while the House Judiciary Committee had been “dissed” by the administration, other committees had seen success. More than one speaker argued that impeachment would not prove to be the elixir that its supporters envisioned.

“Even this impeachment inquiry is the same fucking process,” said one senior Democratic aide. “You will still end up in the courts.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 08:06 AM (11 replies)

Mike Huckabee's Epic Fight to Keep Beachgoers Off His Patch of Florida Sand

May 22, 2019
Mike Huckabee’s Epic Fight to Keep Beachgoers Off His Patch of Florida Sand
The former presidential candidate’s legal and lobbying crusade aims to make a once-public beach private.
Stephanie Mencimer

Not long after his failed 2008 presidential bid, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee bought a beachfront plot in the Florida Panhandle and built a three-story, 10,000-square-foot mansion, with six bedrooms, seven-and-a-half bathrooms, and a pool. By planting his flag in the Florida sugar sand, Huckabee was escaping Arkansas income taxes and joining other rich Republicans who owned houses in this particular part of Walton County, including Karl Rove. The beach house was a sign that he’d made it. As he explained in an email to a state senator years later, “Having grown up dirt poor in Arkansas, I never thought I’d see saltwater in person, much less live on a beach.”

There was just one problem: Huckabee built his dream house on a public beach, a spot where some of the more than 4 million spring breakers and tourists who come to Walton County each year had been parking their lawn chairs and fishing poles since time immemorial. That meant the Fox News contributor had to share much of the 115-foot-long spit of sand in front of his $6 million house with those who helped pay for it—the people who watch his TV show. And he didn’t like it one bit.

So Huckabee, father of White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, lobbied local officials to cleanse it of the riffraff. Now, along with his rich neighbors, he’s taken the matter to court. In doing so, he and the other wealthy beachfront property owners have set off an epic legal battle, one that has Florida cops booting unsuspecting tourists off the beaches just as summer vacation season sets in.

The issue has become so toxic that the state’s Republican governor skipped out on some public appearances to avoid protesters last year. Beach access activists say the legal fight has larger implications, not just for Florida but across the country, as wealthy, powerful people try to annex public beachfronts for their private benefit. “This is just the beginning,” says Santa Rosa Beach attorney Daniel Uhlfelder, one of the activists leading the fight against beach privatization. “If they’re able to pull this off, they’re going to take this to other coastlines around the country.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu May 23, 2019, 06:58 AM (56 replies)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Just Convinced Ben Carson That HUD's Drug Policies Should Be Changed


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Just Convinced Ben Carson That HUD’s Drug Policies Should Be Changed
Carson seems to agree that public housing tenants shouldn’t be automatically evicted if their guests break the law.
Nathalie Baptiste

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Tuesday accomplished a rare feat for a Democrat—she appeared to convince a Trump administration official that federal policy should be changed. Specifically the firebrand congresswoman from New York got Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson to agree that his department’s drug and crime policies should be reformed.
During a House Financial Services Committee hearing, Ocasio-Cortez used her time to ask Carson about HUD’s stringent crime policies that could lead to public housing tenants being evicted.


“Would you support being able to move some of these policies over to a more holistic review?” she asked. “You yourself asked for a case-by-case consideration. Should that case-by-case consideration be codified in federal law instead of having blanket, one-strike or no-fault policies?”

Carson’s answer suggested he would indeed by open to supporting such a change. “I’m always in favor of more flexibility,” he said.

“I’m happy to hear that,” Ocasio-Cortez said. Moments later, she noted she was introducing housing legislation that would include those reforms.

Posted by babylonsister | Tue May 21, 2019, 07:47 PM (1 replies)

90% Of House Judiciary Democrats Support Beginning Impeachment

Posted on Tue, May 21st, 2019 by Jason Easley
90% Of House Judiciary Democrats Support Beginning Impeachment

Cohen said on MSNBC’s The Beat with Ari Melber:

The Judiciary Committee as a whole is for at least an inquiry of impeachment. I don’t think any member, there might have been two members, that were particularly close to Speaker Pelosi that were not on board. But I would say, 80, 90% of the committees on board to go forward.


I can’t speak for the chair, but I know they’re in that most of us are lawyers. We have the Constitution in our heart, and most of us have probably had more interaction with the Mueller report and the facts than most of the rest of Congress because it has come to us. We wanted to prep for Barr and McGahn.

Video @ link:

Cohen was also quick to point out that a majority of Democrats in the House caucus still support Speaker Pelosi’s position of letting the investigations and court cases do their work.

House Judiciary Democrats Are Frustrated


Posted by babylonsister | Tue May 21, 2019, 07:14 PM (3 replies)

McCarthy Blocked Bid to Limit China's Role in U.S. Transit


McCarthy Blocked Bid to Limit China’s Role in U.S. Transit
May 21, 2019 at 1:26 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard

“House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) blocked a bipartisan attempt to limit Chinese companies from contracting with U.S. transit systems, a move that benefited a Chinese government-backed manufacturer with a plant in his district,” the Washington Post reports.

“His behind-the-scenes intervention came as Congress was trying this year to craft a spending compromise to avert another government shutdown. McCarthy pressed lawmakers to strip out language that could have prevented the company in his district, BYD Motors, from winning federal contracts, and they relented because they feared imperiling the bill.”
Posted by babylonsister | Tue May 21, 2019, 06:53 PM (0 replies)
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