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Keep Firing, A**holes. Wonkagenda For Mon., April 8, 2019

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Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.


DHS secretary Kirstjen Nielsen has been quit-fired after Trump bitched and moaned about wanting someone who could be tougher on all the anchor babies leading the Mexican taco truck invasion of the southern border. According to gossip mongers, Stephen Miller has been pulling the strings behind the scenes, pushing Trump to "You're Fired" Nielsen and institute even more racist and hardline immigration policies. Last night Speaker Nancy Pelosi released a statement calling the firing of Nielsen "deeply alarming," while Trump shitposted about closing the southern border (again). In the meantime, Trump has tapped Kevin McAleenan, a hardline CBP commissioner instrumental to Trump's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, to head up DHS until he replaces him with someone like like Energy Secretary Rick Perry, former Virginia AG Ken Cuccinelli, or Kris Kobach.

Trump's acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney went on Fox to say that congressional Democrats will never get their hands on Trump's tax returns because people already voted on Trump not releasing his tax returns (we did?), plus he's still under audit (is he?), and called efforts to get Trump's tax returns a "political stunt." At the same time, Trump's TV lawyer Jay Sekulow was on a different channel blithering whataboutism, apparently unaware that every other presidential candidate has released their tax returns prior to the election.

There are even MORE schedules from acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt that show him meeting with greaseballs from the energy industry. Among the details Bernhardt tried to hide were a keynote address for an energy lobby at Trump's DC trash palace, meetings with oil executives, and a conservative lobbyist who wants to water down the Endangered Species Act. A full Senate vote for Bernhardt could come as early as this week.

Some rightwing asshole has been arrested and charged with threatening to kill Rep. Ilhan Omar. Hours before the threat, Trump repeated his attacks against Omar during his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition. Totally legal, totally cool.

The Senate Republicans tapped to create TrumpCare have no interest in making Republicans "the party of healthcare." Despite warnings from veteran strategists, Trump's White House and the House Freedom Crazies are eager to make healthcare an issue in 2020, even if it kills them.

Lesser known freshman Democratic House members are posting massive fundraising numbers, and that's bad news for prospective Republicans hoping to retake the House in 2020. Many Democrats easily banked over a half-million in Q1, spooking the hell out of Republican strategists. Meanwhile, astronaut and Arizona Democratic Senate candidate Mark Kelly hauled in an astonishing $4 million in his bid to take on Sen. Martha McSally, signaling Democrats were only just getting started in 2018.

Aspiring swamp creatures shut out by the DCCC have created a new website to crowd fund for potential Democratic insurgent candidates. The DCCC has barred vendors and campaign consultants from working for primary opponents as a way to protect incumbents and hold the Democratic majority in the House, but hardcore progressives want to hunt down every last Blue Dog in every swing district, even if they effectively shoot themselves in the process.

Your B. Barry Bamz says he's "concerned" about the new "circular firing squad" some progressives have created, arguing, "When that happens, typically the overall effort and movement weakens. ... You can't set up a system in which you don't compromise on anything. But you also can't operate in a system where you compromise on everything; everything's up for grabs. That requires a certain amount of internal reflection and deliberations."

Trumpian Florida man Rep. Matt Gaetz is probably rethinking his rumored Senate run in Alabama after former college football coach Tommy Tuberville announced #HesRunning in 2020 to try and unseat Democrat Doug Jones. The Hill reports that Sean Spicer has been advising Tuberville, which honestly seems like a the biggest waste of money in the history of politics. PERIOD.

Mike Pence spent the weekend trying to con farmers in flyover country into supporting the tariffs that are driving them to suicide. In addition to massive flooding throughout the farm belt, Trump's trade war has spiked the price of food throughout the country, but fret not farmers! The TV talking head in charge of Trump's economic policy says the US and China have "a lot of teleconferencing" with Chinese trade officials this week, and they're getting "closer" to a deal that could end Trump's trade war. Yay.

Trump's NAFTA 2: Milk Mafia Boogaloo seems even more likely to die after a Mexican official said attempts to reopen negotiations were "as good as killing it." House Democrats argue they won't vote for the deal due to its vague protections for auto workers and massive carve outs for big pharma, but Mexican officials say the labor rights dispute is already being dealt with by the Mexican Senate. Mexico's new populist presidente, Manuel Lopez Obrador, has previously hinted the deal would die unless Trump releases his tariffs on Mexico's steel and aluminum industry. On top of all that, Axios gossips that Republicans fear Nancy Pelosi will "slow walk this thing to death" in order to make Trump look like a bigger failure in 2020. Womp Womp.

As Israelis get ready to head to the polls tomorrow, PM Benjamin Netanyahu has amped up his usual conservative rhetoric, claiming he'll annex West Bank settlements if he's re-elected. Critics say Netanyahu has engaged in blatantly racist rhetoric against Arabs and Palestinians, and risks creating an apartheid state. Here's a handy 'splainer of the overall political landscape Israeli voters face tomorrow.

Michael Cohen's attempt to give House Democrats TAPES in exchange for a letter telling a judge that he's a good boy appears fruitless after Rep. Gerry Connolly, a senior member of the House Oversight Committee, told Roll Call, "If he wants to come forward with materials, that's his decision — but it would be without any strings attached." Cohen's lawyer, Lanny Davis, says they didn't mean to "imply any quid pro quo regarding Mr. Cohen's willingness to cooperate," they simply want everyone to know that he's a good boy who started helping investigators looking into Trump World (after he got caught being a scumbag).

Former White House counsel Don McGahn sat down for a Mexican lunch with Sen. Mitt Romney and a bunch of Republican Senate aides and gossiped about all the times he was yelled during his time as a Trump minion. McGhan talked less about Trump-Russia and more about court packing, describing Trump's management style as a "hub and spokes model" where a bunch of idiots are all assigned to the same crap because Trump is paranoid.

R. Kelly's lawyer is dragging Michael Avenatti and Jussie Smollett into the ALLEGED cult leader and singer's sprawling sex crimes defense. Avenatti is already serving as a witness, having turned over a VHS tape that supposedly shows Kelly having sex with an underage girl in the early 1990s, but Kelly's lawyer argues that prosecutors can be bullied -- kind of like in the Jussie Smollett case -- and Avenatti regularly bullies people, therefore you must acquit! In a related story, Kelly put on a 28-second show for about 100 fans, then spent 30 minutes taking selfies. Fans reportedly paid as much as $100 to see the allegedly broke singer.

No longer locked into a frozen hellscape of dirty, yellow snow, Chicagoans got drunk and started shooting each other this weekend, leaving 24 people shot, including a mass shooting that injured two kids on the South Side.

A Florida man was arrested after ALLEGEDLY trying to break into cars in the jailhouse parking lot moments after he was released.

John Oliver 'splainered how people in mobile homes are being screwed as the super rich buy up the industry and jack up their rent in order keep poor folks in trailers that are worth less than trash.

Mobile Homes: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO) www.youtube.com


And here's your morning Nice Time! IT'S SARPER DUMAN and his kitties!

"We are working for our new composition with the pianist cat: "2 hand 2 paws"😂😹🎹🎶" www.youtube.com

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Dominic Gwinn

Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or lying in a gutter taking photos.

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Once upon a time... about ten years ago, a group of entirely ridiculous men burst onto the scene wearing stupid hats and telling men that wearing stupid hats and telling men that walking up to women in bars and insulting ("negging") them would get them laid. This did not last long, as women also had televisions and computers and were completely aware of these tricks as well, so when some ass came up to us in a bar and said "Hey, nice nails, are they real?" we would laugh and laugh and loudly announce "Oh my god, this guy just tried to neg me! Can you believe that shit? HEY EVERYONE, THIS GUY JUST TRIED TO NEG ME!" and then refer to him as "Mystery" the whole night.

Most of the men who tried that shit only did so a few times before realizing that it wasn't going to work, and thus moved on to other things. Perhaps things that did not involve furry hats and coming off as a huge creep. We may never know, because I would assume that those who tried it are now extremely embarrassed and would never, ever admit to this to us.

Still, there were a few men willing to eat that shit up, as well as some grifters willing to take advantage of that. Said grifters tended to be extremely misogynistic and seemed more like they were teaching men how to be as despised by women as they were than teaching them how to actually be liked by women.

Some of them, like Roosh V, a creepy weirdo who actually does live in his mom's basement, actively encouraged men to rape women who were intoxicated to the point of being obviously unable to consent.

However, even that branch of the PUA tree is wilting away. Many "self-help" style PUA forums like Nextasf and RSDnation are shutting down or have already shut down. In March, Chateau Heartiste, a batshit crazy PUA turned White Nationalist/Alt-Right blog was shut down by Wordpress. This week, rape advocate Roosh V (whom you may recall once called yours truly a "Wonkette typist/clown face, would not bang") announced that he was renouncing his PUA ways and devoting himself to Jesus. He explained to the forum he manages that he would no longer be allowing anyone to discuss premarital "fornication."

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'Baby Geniuses' star Jon Voight took to Twitter early this morning to proclaim his undying love for Donald Trump, probably because there is no one left in his life who will listen to him talk about this, or anything else, in person. In this video rant, Voight encouraged members of the Republican Party, whom he apparently thinks are the only real citizens of the United States, to stand by Donald Trump and "acknowledge the truth" that he is the best President since Abraham Lincoln.


Part ONE:

People of the Republican Party, I know you will agree with me when I say our president has our utmost respect and our love. This job is not easy. For he's battling the left and their absurd words of destruction. I've said this once and I'll say this again. That our nation has been built on the solid ground from our forefathers, and there is a moral code of duty that has been passed on from President Lincoln. I'm here today to acknowledge the truth, and I'm here today to tell you my fellow Americans that our country…

Oh no, not our absurd words of destruction!

Part DEUX:

is stronger, safer, and with more jobs because our President has made his every move correct. Don't be fooled by the political left, because we are the people of this nation that is witnessing triumph. So let us stand with our president. Let us stand up for this truth, that President Trump is the greatest president since President Lincoln.

Does Jon Voight not know there have been... other presidents? Can he name them? Because really, it does not sound like it. Does he also not know that a very big chunk of the Republican Party actually does not care very much for Abraham Lincoln? Namely those defenders of Confederate statues that Trump called "very fine people?" Also, did he intentionally diss their beloved Ronald Reagan?

Who can know? Who can even tell what he is trying to say or why he is trying to say it. He doesn't appear to have tweeted much since 2016, so I'm guessing whoever's job it was to keep him from tanking his career quit. Either that... or after filming the seventh season of Ray Donovan, he found out it's going to be canceled or his character is getting killed off or something and he is now free to be a jackass? I don't know, I haven't watched the show, although my parents are very into it and mad that I haven't watched it. Literally all I know about it is that it has something to do with Boston, because they keep mentioning that to me like it's a selling point.

It seems useless at this point to note that the people who scream their faces off about how bad it is for Hollywood celebs to support liberal causes, and how they should keep their politics to themselves, etc. etc. make a way bigger deal than normal people do whenever a Big Time Hollywood Celebrity like Jon Voight or, uh, Scott Baio, supports their cause. Mostly because they're the only ones who have elected a reality TV star and the star of Bedtime for Bonzo (who by the way, also once practically ruined a perfectly good Bette Davis movie with his bad acting. Which is not to say that Dark Victory is not fantastic and probably the best thing to watch if you want to sob your face off, but he was very bad in it.) to run the country.

But we might as well do that anyway, because it actually never stops being funny.

[Jon Voight Twitter]

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