You Boofed Yet? Wonkagenda For Thurs., Oct. 04, 2018
Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scheduled a procedural vote for Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Friday, setting the stage for a final vote this weekend. Last night Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin sent a letter to Senate Judiciary Chair Chuck Grassley asking him to correct two tweets that claimed Kavanaugh's previous FBI background checks contained nothing about alleged sexual misconduct or his booze habit, but Durbin declined to go into detail, only stating, "The Republican staff tweets are inaccurate."
Senators will line up at a SCIF later this morning to read the FBI report on Kavanaugh. Trump's White House and Republican leaders are already attempting to blunt potential political fallout from the probe -- widely viewed as incomplete by Kavanaugh's alleged victims and potential witnesses -- by saying that after nine interviews it concluded Kavanaugh was a choir boy who never pulled his dick out or got into bar fights because he was busy lifting weights at Tobin's house while drinking beer (he likes beer).
Since the FBI couldn't or wouldn't listen to the 40+ people coming out of the shadows, journalists Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer did. This morning they report that Deborah Ramirez feels "silenced," as well as the stories of other people who remember Kavanaugh being a jock douchebag in high school.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders emerged from her hidey hole to say that Trump was speaking "facts" when he mocked Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, saying "This is about politics and this is about power, pure and simple."
Lindsey Graham was booed at a the Atlantic Festival after he had the balls to say Dr. Blasey was treated "respectfully," and that Kavanagh "was treated like crap." Graham then brought up conspiracy theories about Bill Clinton, and compared Kavanaugh to Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein (again).
Last night Republican Sen. Ben Sasse gave an impassioned #MeToo speech on the Senate floor about two personal friends who were raped, and added, "We all know that the president cannot lead us through this time." Sasse then revealed he never really liked Brett Kavanaugh anyway. #HesRunning.
Republicans are quick to complain about how Democrats seem united in defeating Kavanaugh, but they'd rather not talk about the multi-million dollar effort from conservative dark money groups to ram him through, nor do they want to talk about Sen. Jon Kyl, who personally led Kavanaugh through the nomination process before he was tapped to replace the late Sen. McCain. Now there's an effort to slut shame the grouchy old bastard into recusing himself, but don't hold your breath. Republicans just banned the public and media from the fourth floor of the Dirksen Building.
A federal judge has temporarily upheld the temporary protected status of refugees from Haiti, Sudan, Nicaragua and El Salvador, ruling that the Trump administration had no "explanation or justification" to deport 300,000 people from "shithole countries." Last night those immigrants found an unexpected ally in the Teamsters Union.
The Trump administration has just rolled back Obama-era safety regulations for trains that carry large amounts of oil following lobbying from a train industry that felt it didn't need big brother telling it to buy brakes.
The cacophonous butthurt echoing from Pennsylvania Avenue was deafening as Trump's White House sought to dull the impact of the New York Times calling Trump a grifty tax cheat. Sarah Huckabee Sanders called it a "boring 14,000-word story."
Betsy DeVos wants to investigate whether or not the alleged sexual assault of a 5-year-old girl in a school bathroom is a result of the school's transgender bathroom policies. The case is being pushed by the Alliance Defending Freedom, a known anti-gay religious lobby that's been labeled a hate group by the SPLC.
Senators Elizabeth Warren and and Dick Blumenthal want to investigate why FEMA keeps giving multi-million dollar federal contracts to dumbass contractors with no experience.
Democrats are finding the best way to beat Republican opponents into submission is to hammer them on healthcare, specifically on protecting pre-existing conditions. Now Republicans are trying to divide the Democratic base by labeling Medicare For All as the new repeal and replace. That'll scare the diapers off the geriatrics!
Axios is running a story touting internal and external polling from primarily conservative outlets that say Republican candidates are closing the gap or pulling ahead in some hotly contested races following the Kavanaugh hearings. Axios calls it "The Brett Bounce," because they needed to appease their masters.
If they win in November, House Democrats are promising to go apeshit on the Trump administration by launching investigations into baby jails, Mexican tent cities, and attempts to kill Obamacare and gut protections for pre-existing conditions. Fingers crossed!
Roll Call has a roundup on how the House is changing as Republicans run further to the right while the progressives push, shove, and curse the stubborn asses leading Democrats to the left.
The two super rich guys running for governor in Illinois called each other tax cheats who've bought their way into political power during a debate last night. At no time did either candidate address whether or not they intend to follow the state's long history of sending the previous governors to jail.
Trump's State Department just killed a 1950s treaty with Iran after Iran successfully argued to the International Court of Justice that the US was violating its commitments. The treaty, signed long before the fall of the US-backed Shah during the 1979 Iranian revolution, was an agreement to export medicine and medical devices. In response, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and NSC John Bolton threw chairs and said the US can do what it wants, prompting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to proclaim, "America is alone."
After being repeatedly fucked with by the Chinese, the Pentagon is drafting plans for a large-scale naval exercise around the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait as early as November. The goal, according to Pentagon officials, is to let the Navy stretch its sea legs, but nerds think this is Uncle Sam pissing on China's lawn.
The subtleties of Russian fuckery are nowhere more evident than in Serbia, where the fledgling former Soviet state has increasingly found itself a subservient pawn in Putin's plans despite its goal of joining the EU.
British intelligence services say Russia's GRU has definitely been carrying out cyber and espionage attacks against other nations and organizations, including the United States 2016 election. In characterizing the allegations, British Defense Minister Gavin Williamson condemned Russia as a "pariah state."
BREAKING NEWS: The DOJ is expected to announce indictments of more Russian GRU intelligence officers at 9:30 AM EST.
A judge has ruled that Track Palin will spend the next year in custody after finding that his most recent attack on a woman disqualified him from a veterans therapy program.
A new examination by the Knight Foundation has found Twitter still has a massive fake news problem. A Twitter spox poked their head out from behind a blue velvet curtain and responded with, "Nuh-uh!"
New global research shows more than 250 people have died taking selfies since 2011. So not only are selfies deadly, but they make you look like an asshole.
HEY HOMIES! A new study out of Carnegie Mellon University has found that hugs can make you feel better. :)
And here's your morning Nice Time! The big world of TINY TURTLES!
Follow Dominic on Twitter and Instagram!
We're 100% ad-free and reader-supported, so consider buying us coffee, or get a subscription!
Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or in a gutter taking photos.