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Hometown: Green Mountains
Home country: US
Member since: Tue Feb 5, 2013, 04:27 PM
Number of posts: 11,704

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Slate: "A Former ICE Chief Melts Down" - absolutely incredible, appalling, and expected.


Thomas Homan, the Trump administration’s acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement from January 2017 to June 2018, helped to transform the agency into an arm of Donald Trump’s nativist agenda. During his 17 months, ICE escalated its terror tactics against immigrant communities, tormented thousands of individuals in ICE custody, and lied to federal courts. On Thursday, asked to answer for his agency’s conduct and policies in a congressional hearing, he responded with a meltdown that perfectly captured a lawless organization’s rejection of any rules or authority that might limit its power.

The most indelible moment arrived when Homan’s time expired—and he refused to stop speaking. Jayapal attempted to gavel him down, but he continued to insult her. His rant ended with a moment of rage as he lectured Jayapal: “I’m a taxpayer, you work for me!”

Former ⁦@ICEgov⁩ Dir. Tom Homan shows no respect to ⁦@RepJayapal⁩ during a House hearing today after going over his time, shouting out,
“I'm a taxpayer, you work for me!” pic.twitter.com/kVK2VlWinG
— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) September 26, 2019

This was not his first blowup at the prospect of having to answer to criticism. Earlier this month, Homan engaged in a similar performance, attempting to shout down Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez after his time expired. Like Jayapal, Ocasio-Cortez had to gavel him down.

Intelligencer: The Ukraine Scandal Is Not One Phone Call. It's a Massive Plot.


That is true, as far as it goes. The quid pro quo in the call, though perfectly apparent, is mostly implicit. But the real trick in Trump’s defense is framing the call as the entire scandal. The scandal is much more than that. The call is a snapshot, a moment in time in a months-long campaign that put American policy toward Ukraine at the disposal of Trump’s personal interests and reelection campaign.

Last spring, Rudy Giuliani was openly pressuring Kiev to investigate Joe Biden. Giuliani told the New York Times, “We’re meddling in an investigation … because that information will be very, very helpful to my client.” The key word there was “we’re.” The first-person plural indicated Giuliani was not carrying out this mission alone. A series of reports have revealed how many other government officials were involved in the scheme.

When Trump ordered military aid to Ukraine to be frozen, he went through his chief of staff and budget director Mick Mulvaney. Congress had passed the aid, and Ukraine was under military attack from Russia, a fact that made the halting of the assistance worrisome to numerous officials in two branches of government. As the Times reported, lawmakers and State Department staffers were asking why the money hadn’t gone through.

They were given cover stories: Lawmakers “were first told the assistance was being reviewed to determine whether it was in the best interest of foreign policy,” the Times reported this week. “Other administration officials said, without detail, there was a review on corruption in Ukraine, according to current and former officials. Then, as August drew to a close, other officials told lawmakers they were trying to gauge the effectiveness of the aid, a claim that struck congressional aides as odd.”

Intimate portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama - in pictures (The Guardian)


Photographer Callie Shell documented the Obamas at home in Chicago, on the campaign trail and in the White House. Her new book shares candid images from the 10 years she spent photographing the family. Hope, Never Fear is published by Chronicle Books


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