Obamacare trumps Trumpcare

Donald Trump has warned GOP lawmakers that they could lose the majority in the mid-term elections if they vote against TrumpCare. But as above, most Americans do not like TrumpCare and could vote GOP lawmakers out in about 20 months. So the lawmakers either choose going against TrumpCare and probably keep their job and possibly the majority or vote for TrumpCare but get booted out in 20 months but no tweet wrath from Trump. Hmmm. Tough choices.

In the end, the vote on TrumpCare and to repeal ObamaCare was postponed on Thursday because there wasn’t enough votes even after some wheeling and dealing with various factions.

Then [after consulting with Trump] Speaker Paul ran canceled the vote on Friday. Trump quickly blamed the Democrats and the media even though it was the various factions in the Republican party that doomed it. Trump said he “learned a lot about loyalty” [in his own party].

He also said he’d let Obamacare “explode” – but no idea of what he meant by that comment.

They were unable to narrow the schism between Freedom Caucus conservatives, who believe the bill keeps too much of Obamacare intact and moderates who worry they will pay an electoral price if millions of Americans lose health insurance. The loser should blame them.

Ryan told reporters. “We are going to be living with Obamacare for the foreseeable future.”

There were at least 26 Republicans in the house that are also against the American Health Care Act [a.k.a. Trumpcare] for a number of reasons including the Congressional Budget Office study suggesting it could deprive 24 million people of insurance. Another 4 were leaning that way. If more than 21 Republicans are against AHCA, the bill will fail.

In addition, changes Republicans made earlier this week to the bill will actually only decrease federal deficits by $150 billion over 10 years, while the original measure would have lowered deficits by $337 billion.

A Fox News poll found that only 34% of Americans backed Trumpcare. Interesting as the GOP claim the majority of Republican voters like Trumpcare. It will probably affect the majority of Americans with many in mid and low income citizens being forced to pay more. Coupled with the chopping or reduced budget for many areas of the government and those who voted for Trump [tend to be the same people he’s hurting with the budget and Trumpcare] will not be to happy.

A report said that Mitch McConnell and speaker Paul Ryan at one time proposing repealing Obamacare first and then add Trumpcare. But wouldn’t that mean no healthcare coverage at all?

Trump was also upset that his advisor Jared Kushner wasn’t in Washington. He along with Ivanka and family and other Trump family members were in Aspen [see later]. I’m sure Trump new about it – they took the family plane there.

If he lost on killing Obamacare, Trump wants to tackle tax reform next and they say it could be an even bigger battle.

Just before FBI Director James Comey was to testify in front of congress regarding any association between Russia and the Trump administration, Trump went on his usual Twitter tirade accusing Democrats of making up allegations about his campaign associates’ contact with Russia during the election, to go after Hillary Clinton and find the leaks. Trump also suggested, without evidence, that Clinton’s campaign was in contact with Russia and had possibly thwarted a federal investigation.

In another blow to Trump, the top two lawmakers on the House intelligence committee said that documents the Justice Department and FBI delivered late last week offered no evidence that the Obama administration had wiretapped Trump Tower.

White House spokesman Sean “Garlic” Spicer tried to clarify Trump’s comments saying he wasn’t using the word wiretapping literally, noting that Trump had put the term in quotation marks. Trump “used the word wiretap in quotes to mean broadly surveillance and other activities,” Spicer said. He also suggested Trump wasn’t accusing former President Barack Obama specifically, but instead referring to the actions of the Obama administration. OK. So why wait so long to say so? Not all the tweets contained quotes related to wiretapping.

Trump may have disclosed classified information that the CIA was “hacked” during an interview. Trump said the leak occurred while Obama was in office – shifting the cowardly blame to him.

Trump said he shouldn’t be blamed for quoting a Fox News analyst who had accused British intelligence of helping Obama spy on him. But shouldn’t he be verifying fake news first?

Judge Andrew Napolitano, the Fox News analyst who was praised by Trump, has apparently been benched by the network. He repeatedly relayed information from anonymous sources about former President Obama using the British to spy on Trump. His claims were strongly denied by American and British authorities and Fox’s own news anchors disavowed Napolitano’s claims.

Trump approved the Keystone XL pipeline and claiming that work can start right away. As usual, he is wrong. The state of Nebraska has to approve the pipeline path and that could take up to 8 months. Other portions of the pipeline were built before the Trump administration.

Spicer read off a script in announcing the pipeline complete with saying the previous administration did nothing in eight years while Trump did it in 2 months – except the US government didn’t get involved until mid-2010.

“I guess I can’t be doing so badly, because I’m president, and you’re not,” Trump said in a Time magazine interview.

“I quoted the judge the other day, Judge Napolitano,” Trump told Time, referring to the Fox News contributor Andrew Napolitano, who reported the information on Fox News about British spying on behalf of President Obama using anonymous sources, on which Trump’s White House based the claim. So it is OK for Trump to use information based on anonymous sources but not everyone else.

Remember Trump claiming Ted Cruz’s father was involved in the JFK assassination? Trump referred to a newspaper story which had a picture of Ted Cruz, his father, and Lee Harvey Oswald having breakfast.” And where is that story and picture? He didn’t accuse Ted Cruz on being part of the assassination?

Presented with a litany of other falsehoods and mischaracterizations, Trump offered this nonchalant rebuttal to his critics: “I tend to be right. I’m an instinctual person, I happen to be a person that knows how life works.” Seriously?

“Brexit, I predicted Brexit, you remember that, the day before the event. I said, ‘No, Brexit is going to happen,’ and everybody laughed.” You don’t have to be a genius to know that Brexit could be coming very soon – just need to look at what’s going on at the time.

Despite previously stating that she would not take on an official role in her father’s administration, Ivanka Trump is now moving into an advisory position in the White House. Like father, like daughter. Liars. Ivanka Trump has started a job as an unpaid worker in the West Wing, complete with an office and staff. She also has a higher security clearance. As well as  divesting some of her assets [for ethics reason] and selling $36.7 million in assets to comply with ethics rules, she still owns her clothing and jewelry brand [will get a fixed amount but no shares as company staffers will manage the company for her].

While they were on spring break in Aspen, Colorado, the Secret Service “signed a contract last week for more than $12,000 with the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club for rental ski equipment and clothing.” So another bill on the taxpayer’s dime, aside from the secret service, accommodations, food, airplane, vehicles, extra police, etc. Vanity Fair reported “annoyed” New York moms and limited availability at local dining hot spots. And “dozens” of protesters took to the town’s Main Street on Sunday morning, per the Denver Post.

At least Ivanka didn’t lose her $585 US Dior sunglasses in Aspen.

[Aspen was the site of a very public feud between the future President, Ivana, and Marla Maples, who later became Trump’s second wife. When the family was vacationing there in December 1989, Ivana, approached Maples at a popular mid-mountain restaurant and told her to stay away from her husband.]

Trump said that Germany owes “vast sums of money” to NATO and the U.S. “must be paid more” for providing defense, reiterating his stance that European allies need to meet their end of the bargain if they are to continue benefiting from the military alliance. But Trump said at the press conference that many countries owe “vast sums of money” — but he declined to identify Germany, at the time, as one of those nations. NATO uses 2% of the nation’s guideline for what they need to give to the alliance. While few give 2% or more, none have taken out loans.

Trump pushed back against the notion in Europe that his “America First” agenda means he’s an isolationist, calling such a suggestion “another example of, as you say, fake news.”

Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, revealed that communications of Trump and associates may have been picked up after the election by intelligence agencies conducting surveillance of foreign targets.

Trump said in December that “I would rarely leave the White House because there’s so much work to be done.” Yet he has spent 25% of his presidency at Mar-A-Lago.

Both New York City and West Palm Beach police have complained that the extra costs in protecting Trump and his family in either locations coming from their security budget reducing police presence elsewhere. For New York, it is $146,000 a day just for police. This would exclude state police, the FBI and Secret Service plus the inconvenience for those living, working or owning a business in Trump Tower and surrounding area.

Trump, once a critic of his predecessor’s golfing, has visited two of his golf courses in Florida – seemingly to play the sport – 11 times in the first two months of his presidency plus once in Virginia [unsure if he played though]. “I’m going to be working for you; I’m not going to have time to go play golf,” Trump said during a 2016 event in Virginia, jabbing at Obama. “I love golf, I think it’s one of the greats, but I don’t have time,” he said in December.

The Trump family’s south Florida golf club, Mar-A-Lago, doubled its entrance fee to $200,000 after Trump’s inauguration.

Meanwhile a day after German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit, Trump went after Germany because they don’t spend enough on NATO and defense spending. Coward he is. What Trump fails to understand, part of the US’s spending in NATO is for NATO to secure all of the alliance’s countries. The European countries are a “first line” of defense for the US. The same reason why the US is in the Middle East – to stop terrorists there before they come to the US.

Seems Trump didn’t want to shake hands with Merkel. Lip readers said she asked him at the photo opp.

With the announcement of the first Trump budget, many departments will end up with major slashing in what they could spend. Almost every department will experience cuts with very few exceptions. Hardest hit includes the EPA, Corporation for Public Broadcasting [PBS, NPR, etc.], etc. Add the programs such as Amtrak, Meals on Wheels, Air traffic control [shift from FAA to a private non-profit company], program offering jobs to senior citizens, etc. [Many Americans will be asking why did they vote for Trump after this.]

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s credibility is being questioned after publicly defending President Trump’s conspiracy theories and falsehoods. He tried to defend Trump saying Paul Manafort had an insignificant “limited role” in the campaign when he was campaign chairman for 5 months. Spicer said he came on in June when Manafort was hired at the end of March 2016 according to a press release. Add his other issue such as arguing with reports, saying he has no idea when it’s already known, false statements about crowd size at the inauguration, and Obama using the British to wiretap Trump.

Trump announced that Charter Communications will spend $25 million US and create 20,000 jobs in the US as it brings back overseas call centers. Problem is that Charter announced this already in 2015. And he’s taking credit… Again. Charter didn’t seem to mind – the CEO was present at the re-announcement.

Trump cited a Bleacher Report that NFL owners were avoiding hiring San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick because they did not want to face Trump’s Twitter wrath. Kaepernick caused a problem for kneeling during the national anthem before kickoff at his games to protest racism and police brutality.

A bit of humor…. Trump-Induced Anxiety Disorder, or TIAD

 

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Does it ever end, more on Trump

At a campaign stop today, Donald Trump seemed to jokingly suggest that Americans would be justified in assassinating Hillary Clinton should she become president and try to get rid of gun rights. This should spark another round of people stepping away from Trump. [And as usual, Trump is a liar. Clinton proposes some changes such as restricting certain guns as well as more thorough checks.]

Trump ignited new party tensions by refusing to endorse House Speaker Paul Ryan, Sen. John McCain or New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte.

Trump also claimed Paul Ryan had asked for his support in Ryan’s primary challenges, something Ryan’s aides denied. Trump also praises Ryan’s longshot opponent, Paul Nehlen, for running “a very good campaign.”

“I strongly support Paul Ryan, endorse his re-election. He is a long-time friend, a strong conservative leader,” said Mike Pence – even though his boss doesn’t support him. Ryan came out to endorse Trump yet he wasn’t “there yet” on endorsing Ryan in his upcoming primary. Trump eventually endorsed Ryan, McCain and Ayotte.

Regarding Senator Ayotte, “I don’t know Kelly Ayotte. I know she’s given me no support – zero support – and yet I’m leading her in the polls. We need loyal people in this country. We need fighters in this country. We don’t need weak people.” He seems to care about himself winning than him and the party winning. Is he competing against her?

Already at least one GOP senator as well as the woman who help shape New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s national image have decided that they will vote for Hillary Clinton. Other said they won’t vote for Trump [but didn’t say they’d vote for Clinton] including Mitt Romney and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

Trump claims that “Our roads and bridges fell into disrepair, yet we found the money to resettle millions of refugees at taxpayer expense.” Except the American Society of Civil Engineers said in a report that the government needs to spend $1.4 trillion through 2025 to close the infrastructure funding gap and the State Department puts the cost of the resettlement program to taxpayers at less than $1.2 billion a year. So $1.2 billion is 1% of what’s needed to fix the infrastructure per year.

Trump also claims “According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, before NAFTA went into effect [in 1994], there were 285,000 auto workers in Michigan. Today, that number is only 160,000.” In 1994, there were 200,000 autoworkers. By 2000, it jumped to 231,000. It only declined around 2008-2009. Most of the job losses went to other states – not to Canada or Mexico.

And Trump claims that “The United States also has the highest business tax rate among the major industrialized nations of the world, at 35 per cent. It’s almost 40 per cent when you add in taxes at the state level.” Many states have loopholes [something Trump is very familiar with] and end up paying little or nothing. The effective corporate income tax rate is around 27 per cent, roughly in line with global averages, according to government estimates.

Trump wants to drop the tax rate from 35% to 15%. Good luck in how the government can keep the debt down with that drop. Add complete deduction of expenses related to child care spending from their taxes.

A group of around 50 former security people whom have held jobs in various administrations, both Republicans and Democrats, have called Trump a danger to national security.

Recently, billionaire industrialist Charles Koch told hundreds of donors that make up his political network that Trump does not embrace, nor will he fight for, free market principles. That’s one reason Koch’s network, which has the deepest pockets in conservative politics, is ignoring the presidential contest this year and focusing its fundraising wealth on races for Congress. Donors and elected officials gathering at a Koch event in Colorado said they accepted the Koch brothers’ decision, even if it hurts the GOP’s White House chances.

Meg Whitman, a major GOP donor and former California gubernatorial candidate, said Tuesday she would support Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump, making her one of the highest-profile Republican defections. Whitman, the president and CEO of Hewlett-Packard, also said she would use her considerable resources to make a contribution to the Clinton campaign and its allied super PACs.

A professor of law, economics and political science at the University of Southern California says the excuses Trump has given regarding him not disclosing his taxes don’t fly. IRS has stated there is nothing preventing him from releasing his tax information. It also shows that the public won’t find anything out of the ordinary that would affect his audit – other than how little he pays in taxes. [In comparison Warren Buffet keeps everything in his stock and donates heavily. No loopholes.] His excuse that there is nothing to learn and the public doesn’t care goes to the previous comment as well as let the public decide. The Mitt Romney excuse [where some say he lost the election] doesn’t fly because they say he paid little in taxes. Supposedly Trump pays less.

“I think we have never been this united,” said Trump even after the jumping ship of various GOP backers and party officials.

Trump was deeply upset when GOP leaders “took the other side” during his quarrel with the Khans, one person said, and blames his staff for not keeping top Republicans in line. Another person said Trump is irritated that planning in battleground states isn’t further along with less than 90 days until Election Day.

Somehow if Trump decided to quit before September 1, it would be theoretically possible for the GOP to come up with a nominee who could get on the ballot in enough states to reach the 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency.

Trump spokesman Jason Miller, sounding a bit like his boss, “just finished up our strongest month of fundraising to date, we’re adding talented and experienced staffers on a daily basis and Mr. Trump’s turning out bigger, more enthusiastic crowds than Hillary Clinton ever could.” Uh huh. Wonder how they gage the “more enthusiastic crowds” part.

Miller also said a biased media was at work framing the issue as one of “Trump vs. Khan”. Seems that Miller is killing his chances with getting a job after November if he intends to stay as a spokesman as it would be logical for him to get a job in the same “biased media” – well, except for Fox.

When news came that $400 million [US] would be sent in cash [in various currencies] to Iran for paying back money on a military equipment order from the late 1970s just before the Shah was overthrown, Trump claimed that Clinton was the one that gave Iran the money – not for the payback but for the nuclear deal with Iran and then later he first said to pay for the release of some sailors in January 2015 that strayed into Iranian waters [make up your mind!]. Some GOPs maintain that the $400 million settlement was a ransom for the release of four private American citizens jailed in Tehran and freed a day after the Iran deal was implemented.

At a rally, Trump went after a woman and her crying baby telling her, she should leave with her baby. He kept on flip flopping on whether he was kidding or not. Nobody knew if she left but no more crying.

A military veteran gave his Purple Heart to Republican nominee Donald Trump, prompting the Republican nominee to declare that this was “much easier” than serving in combat.

According to the spokesman for an organization that administrates the Purple Heart “No one who isn’t entitled to the Purple Heart valor should have one.”

A Purple Heart recipient was stunned to see Trump treating the prestigious award like a flashy new toy. He figured if Trump has really always wanted a Purple Heart, he should have to earn it “the old-fashioned way”: by going into a war zone. So he’s raising money to help give Trump that chance. “I fully endorse his desire to earn one and would happily oblige his interest in doing so, by being one of the first to chip in to fly him to the conflict zone of his choosing,” the veteran wrote.

I guess Trump is getting nervous. He is calling the election “rigged” even before the election. I guess when he doesn’t get his way, it must be rigged.

Acting like a big baby, Trump is also complaining that two of the debates scheduled would fall on Sunday – during football games. He also deemed them “rigged”. I guess he did his homework and found out that’s where his voters will be.

Not surprising he went after the media basically saying they [I will assume excluding right-wing leaning media like Fox News] were not telling the truth. Uh huh.