Don't Forget Poland. Wonkagenda For Wed., Sept. 19, 2018
Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.
Prof. Christine Blasey Ford sent a letter to Chuck Grassley asking for a full investigation by law enforcement into allegations that Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in the 1980s. Grassley said no, then grumped like an old coot. Last night an attorney for Ford told Anderson Cooper that she wants the FBI to investigate before she speaks to the Senate Judiciary Committee, adding that Ford doesn't have 20 years of experience in Republican fuckery, or a phalanx of bros who can't remember who they might have (ALLEGEDLY) tried to rape while binge drinking in high school. [Video]
Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer floated the possibility that Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee could subpoena Kavanaugh's old drinking buddy Mark Judge to appear as a minority witness.
Anita Hill penned an op-ed for the New York Times and says that elected officials have an obligation to "heightened accountability" in the #MeToo era, and they "must demonstrate a clear understanding that sexual violence is a social reality."
A conservative dark money group is claiming that three groups crowdfunding to pressure Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins to vote against Brett Kavanaugh constitutes bribery after Collins whined about "quid pro quo fundraising." The group is demanding a DOJ investigation; lucky for them the head of the criminal division is a Trump stooge with shady Russian ties.
Conservatives are legit scared they're already losing votes for Brett Kavanaugh. Mitch McConnell tells Axios that he definitely has 50 votes, but a number of Republican Senators -- some spoiling for a fight with Trump -- are insisting that Prof. Ford be given a chance to speak in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
A bunch of progressive groups are working with the the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and Educational Fund Inc. to urge people to call their Senators and vote against putting Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court. This morning they released a new ad with John Legend.
Rep. Adam Schiff and Democrats in the Gang of Eight sent a letter to Rod Rosenstein asking him not to comply with Trump's order to release classified Trump-Russia materials, saying it would violate DOJ policies and "assurances" made by Rosenstein not to screw things up. Early this morning anonymous DOJ officials told Bloomberg it would EVENTUALLY release of the documents, but first it needs to run a black marker all over the really juicy bits.
The Trump administration never intended to sanction Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, but Steve Mnuchin accidentally ran his mouth during a congressional hearing and forced the Treasury to find SOMEONE worthy of sanctions.
A recently released congressional investigation has found the Trump administration lost another 1,488 migrant children in addition to the 1,475 kids DHS lost earlier this year. Advocates and investigators say there's no way to know whether the kids have been snatched by human traffickers, or hidden in sanctuary towns and cities. #MAGA
The Senate is kicking the can of government funding down the road until after the election. The short-term spending bill has no money for Trump's tortilla curtain along the Mexican border, so it's entirely possible Trump shuts down the government at the end of the month.
Trump's Space Force is failing to take off because a Republican-led revolt in Congress, quietly backed by military brass throughout the Pentagon, think it's a YUGE waste of time and money. This is one of those times when the creeping lurch of bureaucracy works out for the best.
Trump's tax cuts (for the super rich) are proving to be a huge bonus for Democrats according to recent polls that show them with only a 39% approval rating. This follows reports that corporations haven't really bothered to "repatriate" the money they've hidden overseas, and new labor data showing businesses are giving out bonuses bonuses instead of raising wages. Corporations are screwing workers, who knew?
In an appearance on Rachel Maddow, Hillary Clinton warned that Trump is probably going to start "You're Fired"-ing people after the midterms, and warns that he could be "even more uncontrollable and unaccountable." This is fine .... [Morning Maddow]
Traditionally safe Republican House seats are in play as the #BlueWave forces Republicans from Missouri to North Carolina to dust off their old campaign coffers.
Even though he sold his soul for an endorsement, Florida Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis is being accused of TREASON by Donald Trump after he dared to stand with Florida's Puerto Rican community. Politico reports that a close Trump official called it a "divorce," and we can't.stop.laughing!
Former Kansas Republican Sen. Nancy Kassebaum is endorsing Democratic state Sen. Laura Kelly's gubernatorial bid over the voter-fucking Republican Secretary of State Kris Kobach. In a report from the Kansas City Star, Kassebaum states, "I felt her experience, 18 years in the Kansas Legislature ... has given her a real understanding of what it takes to work across the aisle."
A new Goucher College poll shows Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan has a 22-point lead over Democratic challenger Ben Jealous. Pundits and press wizards say this is because Democrats (again) nominated the equivalent of a dead fish as every other Democrat on the ticket has a commanding lead over their Republican opponents.
In an effort to convince Trump to create a permanent military base in Poland, Polish President Andrzej Duda suggested calling the base "Fort Trump" during a press conference yesterday. Trying to hide the toadstool growing in his pants, Trump then rambled inarticulate nonsense about NATO countries spending money for protection.
After Trump slapped another $200 billion in
taxes tariffs on Chinese imports, China responded by slapping $60 billion in tariffs on US imports. Citing unnamed White House officials, the WSJ says Trump is probably going to drop another $257 billion in taxes tariffs later this week. Yesterday Trump stated that he was doing it to protect farmers and said, "We don't want to do it, but we'll probably have no choice." Yeah, probably ...
The DOJ wants two Chinese media outlets, the Xinhua News Agency and China Global Television Network, to register as foreign agents, just like Paul Manafort, RT, and Sputnik. This limits the outlets' access to US officials, officially branding them as state-run media outlets (which they totally are).
Russia is blaming Israel for downing a surveillance plane over the Mediterranean after it came close to an Israeli airstrike targeting Iranian-backed Hezbollah forces in Syria. The US, France, Russia, and Israel all agree that a Syrian surface-to-air missile took the plane out, but Russia is still blaming the Israelis because they need a scapegoat. SMH. [Dramatic Recreation]
In a stunning new report, the UN called for the leaders of Myanmar's military to be prosecuted for genocide for the mass killing and expulsion of Rohingya Muslims. The report also criticizes UN agencies for prioritizing diplomacy and development goals and ignoring the abuse, calling for an independent investigation into why such gross violations of humans rights occurred.
Coca-Cola is in talks with a Canadian weed company to make a CBD-infused drink to ease "inflammation, pain and cramping," according to a report in Bloomberg. Far-fuckin'-out, man!
And here's your morning Nice Time! Baby Pygmy Hippos!
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