And we're here to help.
Good news, everyone! We have a Democratic challenger for lousy Maine Sen. Susan Collins. Former Maine gubernatorial candidate Betsy Sweet announced her candidacy Thursday, and we confess we'd be more thrilled about it if she weren't a "former" candidate. That's sort of like when an actor's billed as "Oscar nominee." All we hear is LOSER! and we need closers if we're going to retire Collins.
On the upside, her campaign announcement video struck the right tone and hit all the key points. It begins with a clip of Collins declaring on the Senate floor that she planned to vote for Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court. As Sweet drives through a picturesque Maine town, we hear news reports of the continued right-wing onslaught against abortion rights. It gets us pissed off at Collins all over again.
White and black borrowers: Same credit scores, very different results.
Elizabeth Warren may be running for president, but she hasn't stopped doing her whole Being A Senator thing, either. Which is why Warren is asking the heads of various agencies that regulate banks and financial services to explain what they intend to do about a problem with financial technology programs that have largely automated a lot of loan decisions. You see, a study published in October found that while systems like Quicken Loans have the potential to eliminate discrimination in lending, by removing the potential for loan officers' biases to affect lending decisions, in actual practice those algorithms still result in higher interest rates for black and Latinx borrowers, even when their credit scores are exactly the same as white customers.
Yes, we have made the robots racist.
And Trump NO LIKEY.
Congressman Justin Amash is feelin' feisty! He's calling for Donald Trump's impeachment since he actually read the Mueller Report and isn't a liarfuckingliar like the rest of his GOP colleagues.
And yesterday, Amash voted with the Democrats on the OversightCommittee to hold Attorney General Bill Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress for refusing to turn over documents on the Census.
Advocates weird ideas like 'government should help people,' and other madness.
As a member of the Texas Senate in 2014 -- why yes, old folk, that IS five years ago now -- Wendy Davis electrified womenfolk all over the USA with a 13-hour filibuster of a terrible abortion bill. The bill went on to pass anyway, then was later mostly struck down by the Supreme Court. And Davis went on to run for Texas governor, although good lord her campaign team was a disappointment (hoo lordy was it!) and Davis ultimately lost the election to current Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, helped along with a heaping helping of bullshit from rightwing media (ABORTION BARBIE, Y'ALL!). She should have unveiled the Wu-Tang Clan shirts earlier in the election, probably.
But if she has a bunch of those shirts in storage, she may soon be digging them out, seizing the podium, and shouting "LIQUID SWORDS!" The hot political rumor in Texas is that Davis may decide to challenge freshman US Rep. Chip Roy, the rightwing fartenberry who a couple weeks back blocked a huge disaster relief bill in the House for the sake of being a dick. Davis says she hasn't actually decided, but the wingnuttosphere is already gearing up to trash her, because rightwing media is preemptively dickish that way.
It's The Sunday Show Rundown!
It seems like this week the concentrated political idiocy was all found in two places, NBC's "Meet The Press" and ABC's "This Week." And much like a Gozer the Gozerian of bad political takes, Chuck Todd was mostly there to usher in all forms of the stupid. So allow me to "bust" these morons for you.
I Ain't Afraid of No Chucks media3.giphy.com
We formally begin with Trump
Coven Administration head of the Office of Budget and Management (OMB), acting Chief of Staff, and full time asshole, DMick Mulvaney on "Meet The Press." Mulvaney, as with every appearance he made this week (and any other week for that matter), had plenty of gems to deliver. After the tragic Virginia shooting on Friday that killed 12 people, Mulvaney was asked what Trump plans to do about it. Mulvaney decided to keep the "Thoughts and Prayer" cannons at home and skip straight to the "Don't politicize this" step of conservative inaction:
Graham is 2020's No. 1 target (WITH VOTES).
Many of us do not like Lindsey Graham. This is normal.
Fortunately for us, we now may have something far better to do than start that garage band named "Launch Lindsey Graham into the Sun." Unlike most years, Senator Graham will not be gliding to a definite victory in 2020, oh no he will not. And who might his lovely, lovely, wonderful challenger be? Why it's none other than Mr. Jaime Harrison, the former South Carolina Democratic chair.
Hear Jaime Harrison for yourself:
Jaime Harrison Tells Rachel Maddow: "I'm Running for the U.S. Senate" youtu.be
Harrison made his announcement this morning in South Carolina, and we'd like to direct it to half of the people running for President: Some of you should be more like Jaime Harrison! Run for Senate instead of becoming the 549th white male Democrat to declare his unique brand of mayo is exactly what America needs.
Mitch bites man.
It should surprise no one with a functioning brain stem that Mitch McConnell's rationale for blocking Barack Obama's Supreme Court pick was total bullshit. The Senate majority leader refused to even hold hearings for Merrick Garland back in 2016 because it was an election year and the "American people should have a voice." Apparently, McConnell believes we'll collectively suffer from laryngitis come 2020, so he plans to speak for us.
Speaking at a Paducah Chamber of Commerce luncheon in Kentucky, McConnell was asked by an attendee, "Should a Supreme Court justice die next year, what will your position be on filling that spot?"
The leader took a long sip of what appeared to be iced tea before announcing with a smile, "Oh, we'd fill it," triggering loud laughter from the audience.
Isn't it just hilarious? McConnell stole a Supreme Court seat from a president who was actually democratically elected, and now he's gleefully imitating a Kermit meme.
See, it's not always dog bites man!
When Donald Trump looks at the Senate these days, he only really sees prospective "jurors" -- and he can't risk losing an acquittal vote. Susan Collins or Mitt Romney are in a perpetual state of "deep concern" but are still reliably in his pocket. So he's rightly concerned about Alabama Senator Doug Jones. If Trump were ever actually impeached, Jones would likely call upon all his legal training to look at the "evidence" and "facts," and that's no good for the president.
Most people figured Jones was vulnerable in 2020 because it's Alabama and it's not like Republicans would literally nominate Roy Moore again. The mall-cruising pervert and racist creep was so awful black Alabamans left the secure locations where they hide from white people and came out in force to deliver Jones an unprecedented victory. However, Moore is eager to walk into the electoral rake again, so Trump took to Twitter this morning to beg him to stand down.
A day late and no dollars short, it's the Sunday Show Rundown!
Today we bring you the idiotic punditry from the last guy rocking a Caesar cut and a Stone Cold Steve Austin goatee combo on national TV, Chuck Todd. It was merely five minutes into NBC's "Meet The Press" when Todd decided to use some revisionist history to do what he does best: "Both Sides" the shit out the news. Watch the clip blow and let's break this nonsense down.
Share the joy!
Kris Kobach is the grift that keeps on giving. We have not lived a good enough life for this toxic dumpsterfire to take another run at statewide office in Kansas. Democrat Laura Kelly spanked Kobach in the 2018 governor's race, despite Republicans having a two-to-one voter registration advantage. Since then, Republicans told the White House in no uncertain terms not to nominate that unconfirmable jackass for Homeland Security chief. Given a choice between Kobach and Roy Moore, most voters would choose ... Hillary Clinton. This guy cannot possibly run again. AND YET, Republicans are shitting a brick at the prospect that their own voters might choose him as the Republican candidate to replace retiring Senator Pat Roberts.
Come in, Steve Bullock, read this, we are nice!
Hi Steve Bullock! I know you are busy "running" around, making terrible amateur wind-whistled youtubes and going on Maddow. (I even watched! It wasn't very exciting.) You might not read this. It's cool. Wonkette's already written about your run for president twice: once much nicer than I would have been, and one probably about the right amount of mean. But we hadn't written to you personally, as your constituent. Here's how a Wonkette reader put it in a note to me:
I'm not happy that your governor is running for president, since too many people are doing that. Please tell him to stop. If he won't listen to you, to whom will he listen? You're a small business owner, a farmer's wife, and you have a growing army of bees at your disposal. In Montana, that seems like the trifecta, as a small businesswoman with a husband who farms beeeeeeeees!
That's right, Steve Bullock: beeeeeeeeees!
It's quite possible your advisors might not have pointed out to you that every time you tweet, every response is making witty replies that 100 percent of the time tell you you should be "running" for Senate instead. It's kind of late now, but here's the thing:
YOU SELFISH EGOMANIAC SON OF A BITCH. STOP IT. STOP IT. STOP IT FUCKING SOON ALTHOUGH TO SAVE FACE IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE RIGHT NOW. MEN ARE VERY FRAGILE I GET IT I KNOW.
We can't do jack shit as long as Mitch McConnell is majority leader.
The Senate is killing us. The GOP gained control in 2014 because liberals had something better to do that day, and ever since then Mitch McConnell has twisted the legislative body into a deformed mockery of partisan hackery. He's jacked Supreme Court seats, packed the courts with right-wing extremists, and shrugs off foreign attacks on the nation as long as it benefits him. Nowadays, he likes to watch Democratic House bills wither and die like a sociopathic child sprinkling salt on a slug. He even calls himself the "Grim Reaper," because he doesn't even bother trying to hide his true nature like a common Louis Cipher.
"If I'm still the majority leader of the Senate after next year, [Medicare for All and the Green New Deal are never] going to pass the Senate," the Kentucky Republican told a small crowd during an event in his home state Monday. "They won't even be voted on. So think of me as the Grim Reaper: the guy who is going to make sure that socialism doesn't land on the president's desk."
McConnell is as plain as the growth on his neck: As long as he's in charge, there's no socialism (in the champagne room). The 101 Democrats running for president have bold ideas, but they all require non-reptile leadership in the Senate. This is why priority one is for Democrats to flip the three seats necessary to retake the Senate. They take this so seriously they've recruited such heavy hitters as Helena, Montana, Mayor Wilmot Collins.
Collins is reportedly (by the editrix; he came to our Wonk party!) a really nice guy, but he's a former refugee from Liberia (the one in West Africa). I'm personally black and conscious enough to break the news that Collins is never winning anything statewide in Montana. Trump carried the state by 20 points. What the hell is going on here?
Underwood's ACA 2.0 will keep you from dying or going broke.
Lauren Underwood is one of our favorite new congressional bad asses. The youngest black woman -- ever -- to serve in the House, the former registered nurse flipped a seat in Illinois's solidly Republican 14th district. You might also remember Underwood from the time she grilled former DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen about her child torture hobby. Underwood campaigned on protecting the Affordable Care Act, and she's still dancing with the issue that brought her to Congress. Most of her freshman class has signed onto Medicare For All, and while Underwood supports universal coverage, she wants to strengthen the ACA until we get there.
Underwood recently introduced HR 1868, the Health Care Affordability Act. It's part of a bundle of health care legislation from House Democrats that's intended to "shore up and expand" the ACA. Her co-sponsors are House representatives Jimmy Gomez from California and Tom O'Halleran from Arizona. HR 1868 qualifies more Americans to receive tax credits, expands eligibility for premium tax credits, and lowers premiums.
It is the saddest thing in the whole wide world.
New York Magazine ran a piece today about the collective freakout from big pocket donors in the financial industry. There's "tremendous fear" that Democrats will nominate someone who'll force them to do something socially embarrassing like vote for Donald Trump. Look, they don't want to do it, but Democrats might give them no choice.
Democrats on Wall Street, the supposed "masters of the universe," say they're trying to save the party from a hostile takeover by the loony left. Bernie Sanders is "too crazy" to even imagine in the White House (and when you consider who's already there, that's saying something). And while they see "co-front runner" Elizabeth Warren as "less crazy" and "way more competent" than Sanders, she scares the pants off the average Gordon Gekko.
"She would torture [the financial industry]," one banker told me. "Warren strikes fear in their hearts," explained a New York executive close to banking leaders from both parties
We're so old we remember when we copy-and-pasted this from Rebecca yelling at Jamie Dimon, because it was right now:
You know who went out of his way to not put any of you fuckers in jail? Barack Obama. And how did you respond? You whined that he had poisoned your relationship and also wept you were having your heads cut off like the French Revolution, because Barack Obama said "maybe don't give yourself a billion-dollar bonus this year, on account of you should actually be in jail."
So it is ... rich maybe that the Wall Street people who were already whining about Democrats being too GOSH DARN MEAN TO THEM are whining more, harder, uncutter about it now.
This is the normal level of stupid dumb idiocy we'll have again after Trump.
We swear that John Cornyn is an honest-to-goodness US senator. Yet this is what the Texas Republican (or at least his campaign team) is tweeting while serious people are discussing impeaching the president.
Team Cornyn's tweet quickly found itself a resident of Ratio-ville, where the presiding mayor is Howard Schultz. But why did this crack team of political savants scour Twitter for old-ass tweets from one of the new Mads on "Mystery Science Theater 3000"? Is Patton Oswalt running for Senate? He's certainly more fit for office than Donald Trump. No, apparently, the comedian is just a supporter of a Senate candidate. Democrat MJ Hegar just launched her campaign today to unseat Cornyn in 2020, and Team Cornyn's rapid response was to attack someone who once said nice things about her. Seriously, they have no other connection.
Rudy Giuliani Talking In Stupid Circles Till You Get So Dizzy You Have To Hold On To The Kitchen Floor
It's your Sunday Show Rundown!
After Attorney General Bill "The Worst" Barr (beating Roseanne for the title) released a five-page memo and gave Trump almost a month to positively spin the Mueller Report, the real Mueller Report (with redactions) was finally released on Thursday. And despite Barr giving a pre-release preamble of bullshit, it was not good for Trump. So it was time to load Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani into a trebuchet of bullshit and launch him into the Sunday shows to say stupid things!
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