Could we just repeal Trump's whole presidency?
At campaign events in Michigan this week, Kamala Harris has called for a complete repeal of the Republicans' $1.5 trillion Big Fat Tax Cuts for Rich Fuckwads so they can be replaced by a tax plan that would actually cut taxes for lower and middle income taxpayers instead. Following an appearance in Detroit Monday evening, Harris clarified that by repealing it, she meant "Get rid of the whole thing," which sure sounds like a repeal all right!
While Harris has been talking "repeal and replace" since at least last fall, before she even declared her candidacy, Bloomberg Politics is for some reason treating Harris's position as something new and bold. Glad they caught up!
Her campaign spokesman Ian Sams said she'd seek to replace the law with her proposed LIFT Act, a nearly $3 trillion refundable tax cut focused on middle income earners.
Harris's stance goes further than most Democrats, who have called for repealing parts of the 2017 law that grants steep tax breaks for corporations and upper earners, as well as restoring the full state and local tax deduction, which was limited to $10,000.
Of course, there is also this sober tut-tutting:
Getting rid of the entire law would also mean repealing the doubling of the standard deduction and higher child tax credit, which benefit middle-class Americans. While the law as a whole is unpopular, those provisions poll well.
Well, yes, but replacing those provisions with the LIFT tax refunds -- which we outlined when Harris proposed them in the Senate last fall -- would mean a far better overall tax deal for middle and low-income taxpayers. But yes, it would be a bit of a change, and it goes without saying that Republicans will campaign on how getting a much better deal would really be bad for you, just as they've argued that Medicare for All would make us give up our beloved too-expensive private health insurance, if we have it at all.
Remember when 'conservatives' hated 'frivolous lawsuits'?
First Melania Trump sued the Daily Mail and a host of tiny bloggers for reporting the existence of a book that claimed she'd been an escort. (The Daily Mail settled; the bloggers ate varying degrees of shit.) Then Devin Nunes sued (but never served!) Twitter and his cow lover for the torts of "mockery" and "mean names." And now youngest ever certified securities frauder Jacob Wohl and lobbyist Jack Burkman are threatening to sue the Daily Beast for pointing out that, oh, they MIGHT HAVE induced a young man to falsely accuse gay Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg of raping him.
Is it wrong to falsely accuse someone of rape? Or is it wrong to interview the supposed accuser and type up his words claiming Burkman and Wohl had promised him a "lavish lifestyle," MAYBE falsely imprisoned him, and then (he alleges!) put out the false statement in his name?
According to Burkman and Wohl, it is the latter. And they're going to (threaten to) make the Daily Beast pony up, at least for legal fees, since they will never ever ever win an actual "libel and defamation" (yes, AND) suit on the merits.
This time with Joe Biden and more UKRAINE!
Were you wondering if the media has figured out how to deal with bad faith Republican attacks since the 2016 debacle? They have not! The GOP spinmeisters put their heads together and came up with a spiffy new Uranium One lie for 2020 -- oh, let's call it UKRAINIUM ONE -- and the "liberal" New York Times happily ran right off after it. Yeah, it's going to be another shitshow.
This is excellent news for John McCain.
Mark Halperin was annoying even before we knew how gross he was. He was, in fact, the pundit who bestowed on us the old Wonkette favorite "great news for John McCain," which people at this mommyblog have been typing for eleven years now and didn't even know it was he who'd graced us with it. When his career went up in a well-deserved #MeToo inferno, nothing was truly lost and no one missed him. Now it seems he's mounting a comeback no one requested. The Daily Beast reports that Halperin has spent the past few months "carefully raising his public profile." He called a top editor at The Hill to beg for a job but was told by someone with a disguised voice that "this is an Arby's, sir." He's taken some power lunches with folks who didn't successfully avoid him, including Kellyanne Conway, and now he's even back on Twitter.
We get why Halperin wouldn't want to use the gross face God gave him as his Twitter avatar, and this is probably his own kid (we desperately hope). But it's still too innocent an image for someone literally accused of rubbing his penis on women, against their will, at work. We'd have advised an empty trench coat.
We found people willing to say this, so it must be true.
Democratic voters say that more than anything, they want to beat President Donald Trump in 2020. But some worry that means putting their hope of electing yet another male president on hold.
"The last white male Democrat to get >50% of the vote was JIMMY CARTER. Imo we just can't chance it with another white man," said noted Twitter user Abby Spice-Danvers.
"Considering that every single *losing* presidential candidate has been a white man except for one (the lady who got more votes than any white guy ever) I don't understand how 'electability' is a white man's game," said publicity specialist Leslie Hermelin, "If the data tells us anything it's that for every white man who wins, there are scores of others who lose."
"Also," she added, "the last time Democrats elected a white man as president it was the mid '90s. We have folks voting for president today that weren't even born then!"
And she is not alone in her thinking. In conversations with dozens of Democratic primary voters — men and women — across several states, voters told Wonkette that Hillary Clinton winning the popular vote in 2016 made them rethink how willing Americans are to vote for a man for president, especially when pitted against Trump. For some, the risk of four more years of a Trump presidency is not worth another attempt to put another white guy in office.
It's the Sunday Show Rundown!
We begin the Sunday Show Rundown this week at CNN's "State of The Union" with counselor to the "president" and sentient Hillary Clinton-slur speak-n-spell Kellyanne Conway. Conway, it seems, was there to make her usual rounds of propaganda, when Jake Tapper questioned her about rising white nationalism and her boss's lack of concern about it:
He's a bad man.
Donald Trump gave one of his 50 minutes of hate rallies in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Saturday night. It was his usual marathon of lies with no bathroom breaks. He slimed Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers for refusing to sign a ridiculous "don't kill babies" bill with a "stop beating your wife" rider. Then he reprised his grossest lie yet about how women are murdering their newborn babies for spit and giggles.
TRUMP: The baby is born. The mother meets with the doctor. They take care of the baby. They wrap the baby beautifully.
At this point, Trump even demonstrates rocking a baby, which he's heard is something parents do with their kids.
TRUMP: And then the doctor and the mother determine whether or not they will execute the baby.
"Execute," he says. We're surprised he didn't go with "whack." Yes, the president claims that gangland slayings of children occur routinely in hospitals. (They don't.) The crowd boos — not him or his vicious lies but the women they believe are psychotic enough to do this before heading off to their mani/pedi appointment. It's chilling.
People without medical training or common sense suggested Governor Ralph "Jazz Singer" Northam had advocated "infanticide" in a radio interview last January. Anti-choice ghouls in politics seized on this as the perfect weapon in their war against women's bodily autonomy. They don't care that it's all vile, disgusting, offensive lies.
What the hell, The New Yorker???
Elizabeth Warren has already laid out her explanation for why Trump should be impeached. Kirsten Gillibrand made her campaign announcement in front of Trump Tower. Kamala Harris, during her campaign announcement, led the audience in an anti-Trump "We are better than this" cheer.
So naturally, the New Yorker wants to know why Joe Biden is the only candidate who wants to talk about Trump?
Sigh. Are all of these women invisible or something? Am I crazy? Because I feel as though I've heard all of the candidates talk about Trump or respond to something Trump has done at one point or another. Given that Biden only officially jumped in the race yesterday, I think it is fair to say that he is not yet the only candidate to do anything.
A primer on how to end Trump's presidency!
Hello, America, it's me, Hillary Clinton, the one who FUCKING TOLD Y'ALL'S ASSES APPROXIMATELY ONE MILLION TIMES, DID YOU NEED ME TO MAKE VISUAL AIDS? That is how Hillary Clinton could have started her new surprise op-ed in the Washington Post if she were willing to be a total dick in public like a common Wonkette. As it is, that's not how she started her op-ed about what we should do in response to the truly appalling Mueller Report on Criminal-In-Chief Donald Trump:
Our election was corrupted, our democracy assaulted, our sovereignty and security violated. This is the definitive conclusion of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's report. It documents a serious crime against the American people.
A SERIOUS CRIME AGAINST THE AMERICAN PEOPLE? Yes, even the ones in Buttfuck, Kentuckystan, who worship Trump as their lord and savior.
But what should we do? Investigations? Impeachment? Should we just have an ice cream party and then investigate Hillary Clinton some more, because it was fun the first 48,000 times? She says this is a false choice, and doesn't even include the possibility of investigating herself, because she's shifty like that.
Mueller Report DEFINITIVELY debunked that he was behind the email hack, but what are 'facts' to Fox and Wikileaks?
The Mueller Report pretty conclusively disproved the rightwing (and left!) Wikileaks-Seth Rich conspiracy theory. That was where Sean Hannity and a few DemExit dead-enders agreed that the 2016 leaks of DNC and Clinton campaign emails came not from a Russian hack, but from Seth Rich, a data guy who worked at the DNC -- until he was murdered in a botched DC street robbery or, according to the conspiracy theory, by Hillary Clinton.
But as the Mueller Report showed, Rich was murdered four days before Julian Assange even got his hands on the hacked DNC data, and Assange continued to communicate with his (Russian) hacker sources long afterward. As our Robyn pointed out in the link above, that hasn't slowed down the crazies in the conspiracysphere a single bit, because after all they have never been susceptible to liberal plots like evidence and logic. But how about the far more high-profile organizations like Fox News and Wikileaks, "journalism" home to Julian Assange himself? Now that they've been proven wrong -- Assange himself had a tendency to strongly hint multiple times that Rich had been murdered after leaking the data to Wikileaks -- we bet they're just all kinds of embarrassed, and are in a hurry to clarify the record, because after all, they are Responsible Journamalism Outlets!
As Rolling Stone's Andy Kroll reports, there doesn't seem to be much urgency to set the record straight. Possibly because, in the wake of the Mueller Report, Sean Hannity is very busy proving what a threat to national security Hillary Clinton is. Maybe once Americans know the real truth about her email server, he can get around to un-slandering a murdered DNC staffer.
It's Facebook, so you can probably expect a disaster.
In yet another sign that we are in fact now all dead and inhabiting Stupid Hell, Facebook has contracted with a fact-checking company owned by the Daily Caller. How will this affect the reliability of the news you see on Facebook? Fuck if we know, because despite its efforts to convince people it cares about fighting fake news, Facebook remains a cesspit. Just about the best thing we can say about this development is that "Check Your Fact," the fact-checking subsidiary of Tucker Carlson's Home for Scared Whitefolk, has a completely separate staff from the mothership, so there's that very, very small favor.
The fact-checking partnership was originally reported by Axios, which actually manages to provide a somewhat amusing read for a change, and yay Axios, some of the amusement appears intentional!
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!
Nobody knows the Troubles they've seen.
Well, goddamn it, a wonderful person we'd never heard of until last night is dead. Lyra McKee was 29, an investigative journalist who specialized in looking at the legacy of "the Troubles" in Northern Ireland. She was murdered by someone shooting at police during rioting in Derry, or perhaps Londonderry, depending on who you want to piss off by using either name for the city. The rioting broke out after police "started carrying out searches in the area because of concerns that militant republicans were storing firearms and explosives" in advance of attacks planned to mark the anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising. Police are blaming the violence and McKee's death on the "New Irish Republican Army," a radical republican group formed a few years ago from several smaller groups. Despite the name, the group has no ties to the old Provisional Irish Republican Army, which renounced violence and disarmed in 2005 following the 1998 Good Friday Agreement, which was supposed to have brought peace to Northern Ireland, and kind of did, at least much of the time.
McKee is being remembered by colleagues and readers as a promising journalist who was expected to go far. A year ago, McKee signed a two-book deal with Faber & Faber; the first of the books, The Lost Boys, an investigation of eight young men who disappeared in Belfast during the Troubles in the '60s and '70s, will be published next year. A 2016 Forbes profile said "McKee's passion is to dig into topics that others don't care about." For instance, CNN reports, McKee spent five years investigating a story about the only rape crisis center in Northern Ireland and its long struggle to regain funding after the government eliminated it.
You are no longer operative.
A shocking revelation from the Mueller Report, right after the heavily redacted section about the wetness of rain, is that Sarah Huckabee Sanders is a lying sack of lies. The White House press secretary regularly distorts truth like she's making balloons animals. It was no different when Sanders defended Donald Trump's petulant termination of FBI Director James Comey. She told the public it was all good, the FBI haaaated Comey anyway, and he smelled funny.
Wonkette live-blogged this press conference and presented all her lies to you, our loyal readers, in prevaricator vision. Sanders claimed that the "rank-and-file" at the FBI had lost all confidence in Comey, so what else could a law-abiding, non-gangster president do? It was a public service really. It was also a bunch of lies, and they fell so easily from her pretty liehole.
Robert Mueller interviewed Sanders in February, probably while holding a cross and wearing bulbs of garlic. During their sit down, Sanders admitted that there was no basis in reality regarding her specific claim that she'd personally heard from "countless members of the FBI" who were "grateful and thankful" for Comey's keelhauling. She now insists it was just a "slip of the tongue," the sort of simple error we've all made when repeatedly slandering a career public servant and then doubling down.
Take it away, Bob.
This was just a really good interview.
That's right, Wonkers, it is time for another post about Mayor Pete Buttigieg, because everybody is feeling the BUTT-MENTUM, and you're just along for the ride! Yesterday, we all watched Mayor Pete's official campaign announcement speech, which made everybody cry a lot or something (FULL DISCLOSURE have not watched actually). On Monday night, Buttigieg was Rachel Maddow's guest, and they talked about pretty much everything, but what was most interesting to us, from our own gay perspective, was their rather personal talk about coming out and what that means just in general, and now especially for somebody who is legit running for president of the United States.
Maddow acknowledged at the beginning of the conversation that it was a bit different from other times when she's questioned candidates, because of how she herself is a lesbian and has personal experience with coming out. Maddow also noted that she and Buttigieg were both Rhodes scholars, and that she was the first openly gay American Rhodes scholar. Buttigieg, meanwhile, came out much later at 33. How did that work for him? Maddow said for her, personally, it would have killed her to stay in the closet so long. Her question, specifically, was was it hurtful to experience that much time in the closet.
Like we said, it's a different conversation from the one you're going to see with any of the other candidates, or a conversation with another journalist. It's almost a moment that, if we're being honest, as a gay person, feels intensely familiar. So it's more than a little bit surreal that it's a conversation with one of the higher-polling candidates in the Democratic primary:
Won't even let them eat the poor.
Fox News graciously invited presidential candidate Bernie Sanders onto its network for a town hall Monday night. And like your typical two-faced hosts, they ragged on their guest as soon as he'd left the building. Sean Hannity kicked off his show with a drive-by attack on "Crazy Bernie" (a mature nickname he swiped from Donald Trump) and the "radical socialist Democratic Party."
HANNITY: That was hard to watch! Bernie Sanders for two hours, wow! Gee, let's hear every communist idea we possibly can.
That's a fair criticism, we guess, from someone whose show airs between an hour of Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham. Sanders, by the way, is not a communist. He didn't spend two hours reading his favorite sections of "Dialectical and Historical Materialism" to the audience. He just wants to raise rich people's taxes. When an actual real live socialist is running for president, you shouldn't have to make up shit. It's like when right-wing conspiracy theorists claimed Barack Obama wasn't even born in the US. C'mon, the guy's black. Have a sense of sportsmanship.
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