Forget What? Wonkagenda For Wed., Sept. 11, 2019
Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.
The quit-firing of national security mustache John Bolton just keeps getting weirder. This morning the AP reports Bolton and his lackeys had been on the outs with Trump World for months because of their constant knife fights all over the West Wing. Politico reports it was Tucker Carlson who got Bolton "You're Fired" via a whisper campaign to call Bolton a disloyal LEAKER. Last night Carlson poured gas on the administration's sprawling garbage fires by claiming Bolton's ousting was "great news for America" because he was "a man of the left" who "promoted Obama loyalists within the National Security Council," and that Bolton and the fuzzy warhawk on his face were "one of the most progressive people in the Trump administration." [Tucker's Rant]
Rumors of Bolton's replacement are all over the place. Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham gossiped to Fox News that the administration is thinking about tapping State Department special representative for Iran Brian Hook, or poaching Mike Pence's national security adviser, Keith Kellogg. Axios is whispering Trump could also tap Maj. Gen. Ricky Waddell, a former high-level minion in the Joint Chiefs, or US special envoy for North Korea Stephen Biegun. Meanwhile, Laura Ingraham shrugged off Bolton's "You're Fired"-ing by saying "media goofballs" were making this a big deal and that nobody should care because "He's a true maverick."
Trump started shitposting about the Federal Reserve ignoring his horrible financial advice, screaming they should set interest rates to "zero, or less." As usual, he didn't bother to explain how that would work.
The administration has declared war on the homeless in California. Nobody is sure if the administration even has the legal authority to start make Skid Row great again by bulldozing homeless camps and warehousing homeless people, but "I think they feel that there's got to be something that creates an incentive, carrot and stick, for cities to do something about it," Rudy Giuliani slurred to the New York Times. Media Matters notes that the move comes as Fox News has relentlessly complained about homelessness in California over the last few months.
The House Financial Services Committee held a hearing on student loan debt yesterday and it went about how you'd expect: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez literally making a student loan payment during the hearing while an old, white Republican bragged his spawn had "zero debt" because his brat "actually worked for it." Another Republican, Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy, a former reality teevee show contestant, bitched that "less smart" kids should go to "not-so-great" schools, prompting exasperated face palming. Comedian Hasan Minhaj testified that it's totally fucked pop-stars have to help their fans make student loan payments, and called student debt a "paywall to the middle class." The hearing comes after Roll Call reported earlier this year that 68 members of Congress are bogged down by student loan debt, and an NBC report on Monday that found the Education Department claiming states don't have the legal authority to investigate the exploitation of student borrowers. [Full Hearing]
As expected, the Senate's first attempt to stop another government shutdown collapsed after Republicans promptly began bitching about Democratic-led effort to restore money for Title X family planning. Democrats then accused Republicans of trying to raid HHS and Education funds in order to build Trump's goddamn wall. Roll Call adds that senators Dick Durbin and Richard Shelby were caught on a hot mic complaining about the whole affair.
The House Judiciary Committee passed three gun control bills yesterday in an attempt to get a handle on Uncle Sam's raging hard-on for boom sticks. The Extreme Risk Protection Act would give local cops federal cash to take guns away from potentially homicidal nuts, and was amended by Rep. Lucy McBath to create a national "red flag" process (after Rep. Jim Jordan whined about freedom). Another bill bans the sale, transfer, and manufacture of high-capacity magazines, and the third bill bars people convicted of hate crimes from buying guns.
An El Paso shooting survivor was arrested by the Secret Service shortly before he was supposed to be honored at the White House. Police in El Paso say nobody bothered to check with them about whether or not the survivor's story was actually true, or noticed his long rap sheet, or the warrant for his arrest.
Republicans held on to two House seats in special elections last night. Dan Bishop narrowly defeated Democrat Dan McCready by a projected two percentage points. Over-caffeinated political wizards are pretty sure Republicans will gloat they won bigly in traditionally conservative areas, but they caution Democrats have made substantial gains in suburban swing areas in the last few years.
Business Insider will host a debate between Joe Walsh and Bill Weld, two of three jackasses running in the Republicans' 2020 kamikaze primary on September 24. The debate will be streamed on Facebook so you can be sure nobody will be paying attention. There's still no word on whether or not disgraced former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford will descend from the mountains for the debate, but a Trump campaign lackey called the debate, "pointless."
INDICTED California Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter has a YUGE target on his back. Prosecutors are trying to LOCK HIM UP for grifting, Democrats are eye fucking his House seat, and now super rich guy and former California Rep. Darrel Issa is whispering he wants Hunter's seat if Trump doesn't stick him somewhere in the federal government by this winter. Issa tells Roll Call that Hunter "is injured in a way that, according to most polls I've seen — all polls I've seen — he cannot win reelection." If Issa doesn't get a cushy federal job, he'll face five other Republicans in the California primary, including Hunter (assuming he doesn't quit-fire himself during/after his trial in January).
FACT CHECK: The Russian foreign ministry is pissed Bulgaria stained its attempt to white wash its Soviet occupation post-World War II. Russian officials tell state-owned news outlets that it's illegal to say mean things about the former USSR, but Bulgarian officials say Russia should stop trying to rewrite history books.
Jerry Falwell Jr. wants the FBI to investigate a "criminal conspiracy" after some former board members of Liberty University sent HIS EMAILS and text messages to reporters that show he's a grifty dictator with some weird sex fetishes.
Mark Tolson, a former FBI analyst, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of stealing and leaking EMAILS from arch-conservative lobbyist and news grifter Jack Burkman. Tolson's wife, Sarah Gilbert Fox, used to work for Burkman, and still had access to HIS EMAILS when Burkman and Jacob Wohl faked some crap about Robert Mueller. Tolson and his wife leaked a few emails to reporters proving the scheme was a lame stunt, and turned everything over to the FBI.
Matt Gertz over at Media Matters watched a mind melting amount of Sean Hannity since Trump's coronation as God-Emperor and found Hannity is obsessed with Hillary Clinton, mentioning her in 505 out of 587 shows. Gertz points out most of the stuff is just Hannity's own conspiracy theories, and nonsense HER EMAILS.
The Daily Beast is reporting that Think Progress will archive its old content after rumors began to surface that the site would become a place for the site's parent company, Center For American Progress, to post thinkerings from its resident nerds. RIP.
The Daily Show's Trevor Noah took a look at trophy hunters, and wondered what would happen if wealthy Africans flipped the script and tweaked things (just a bit).
If You Don't Know, Now You Know: Trophy Hunting | The Daily Show www.youtube.com
And here's your morning Nice Time: SEA LION PUPPERS!
Our Sea Lion Pup Is Growing! www.youtube.com
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