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President Trump is so unable to control his emotions about serious matters we might suggest Congress spell out sensitive words while it’s around him. Jared Kushner failed to disclose a number of significant pieces of financial information in a disclosure, but it’s unfair to expect a guy solving Mideast peace and singlehandedly reshaping the federal bureaucracy to add transparency to his to-do list. And the Washington Times called Jimmy Kimmel an “elitist creep” and told him to “shut up” about his newborn’s near-death experience. Mo Brooks couldn’t be reached for comment, as he was probably too busy writing the paper a thank-you note on the advice of his communications staff. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Tuesday, May 2, 2017:
GOP MIGHT BE FORCED TO STOMACH THE EXISTENCE OF SICK PEOPLE - The current GOP health care approach more or less involves walking into an ICU and yelling, “try using some Purell more, dumb dumbs” and promptly leaving. Matt Fuller: “House GOP leaders, unable to find the votes for their health care bill simply by pressuring reluctant Republicans, are now considering changes that will win over moderates. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) began a closed-door meeting on Tuesday by telling members, ‘Now is not the time to decide what to do or how to do it; now is the time to do it,’ according to a Republican present. But just hours later, after it was clear that strategy wasn’t working, leaders were toying with an amendment that would add more funding for the high-risk coverage pools that states would set up to insure people with costly pre-existing conditions.” [HuffPost]
This bill is still about taking away people’s health care to finance a big tax cut: “[Republicans]...keep insisting their bill, which would repeal the Affordable Care Act, would ‘lower premiums and improve access to quality, affordable care,’ as House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) put it last month…. This is not true.” [HuffPost’s Jonathan Cohn]
FLYNNDENBURG STILL BURNING - Jim Sciutto, Manu Raju and Pamela Brown: “Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates is prepared to testify before a Senate panel next week that she gave a forceful warning to the White House regarding then-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn nearly three weeks before he was fired, contradicting the administration’s version of events, sources familiar with her account tell CNN.” [CNN]
JIM DEMINT OUT AT HERITAGE: FOUNDATION LONGS FOR A TIME WHEN IT WAS JUST WRONG, AND NOT WRONG AND AWFUL - Thoughts and prayers to now former Heritage president Jim DeMint for having to take a higher paying job at some lobbying firm. Too bad you can’t call backsies on Senate seats. Eliana Johnson and Nancy Cook: “[I]nterviews with over a dozen sources at the center of the drama suggest Heritage’s stewards — particularly DeMint’s predecessor, Ed Feulner, and Fuelner’s sharp-elbowed protégé, Mike Needham — became convinced that DeMint was incapable of renewing the foundation’s place as an intellectual wellspring of the conservative movement…. ‘When DeMint went in, Heritage became very political. It changed from a highly respected think tank to just a partisan tool and more ideological — more of a tea party organization than a think tank,’ said Mickey Edwards, one of the organization’s founding trustees and a former Republican congressman from Oklahoma.” [Politico]
Congratulations to Congressman Jon Ossoff.
‘BUDDDDDDY!!!!’ - It’s important to keep in touch with friends. Julie Pace: “President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin were scheduled to speak by phone Tuesday, their first known conversation since the U.S. missile strikes on a Syrian air base that sparked new tensions between Washington and Moscow. The early afternoon discussion was expected to focus in part on Syria’s six-year conflict, which has left hundreds of thousands dead and displaced millions more.” [AP]
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WE ARE ALL SUBJECT TO THE EGO OF A VERY, VERY INSECURE MAN - Congratulations on one of feudalism’s central governing dynamics on making such an unexpected comeback. Samuel Levine: “President Donald Trump threatened a government shutdown and fumed over the fact that he had to negotiate a deal with Democrats to fund the government until September. ‘The reason for the plan negotiated between the Republicans and Democrats is that we need 60 votes in the Senate which are not there! We...either elect more Republican Senators in 2018 or change the rules now to 51%. Our country needs a good ‘shutdown’ in September to fix mess!” [Trump tweeted].” [HuffPost]
Lindsey Graham wants in on that hot, hot shutdown action, and he wants in now.
Secure your family in a concrete-lined underground edifice. Hoard seeds. Keep potassium close: “Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, told reporters Tuesday afternoon that the reason Trump floated the possibility of a shutdown was all because of Democrats’ happiness at the spending deal. Over and over, he went after Democrats for hurting the president’s feelings…. ‘I think the president is frustrated with the fact that he negotiated in good faith with the Democrats and they went out to try and spike the football to make him look bad,’ [Mulvaney said]. [HuffPost’s Amanda Terkel]
Is this…is this why Trump is so mad? “As Congress moves toward a vote this week on a long overdue budget plan to fund the operations of the federal government for the rest of the current fiscal year, the fine print of that bipartisan deal again shows a variety of efforts by the Legislative Branch to rein in the use of taxpayer dollars, blocking everything from a military base closure commission, to spending government money on ‘topless or nude entertainers.’” [AJC’S Jamie Dupree]
IVANKA TRUMP HAS FEELINGS...THEN AGAIN MAYBE NOT: REPORT - Thank goodness for that moderating influence. Jodi Kantor, Rachel Adams and Maggie Haberman: “Inside Trump Tower, the candidate was preparing for a debate when an aide rushed in with news that The Washington Post was about to publish an article saying that Mr. Trump had bragged about grabbing women’s private parts. As Ivanka Trump joined the others waiting to see a video of the episode, her father insisted that the description of his comments did not sound like him…. Ivanka Trump made an emphatic case for a full-throated apology, according to several people who were present for the crisis discussion that unfolded in Mr. Trump’s 26th-floor office. Raised amid a swirl of tabloid headlines, she had spent her adult life branding herself as her father’s poised, family-focused daughter…. As she spoke, Mr. Trump remained unyielding. His daughter’s eyes welled with tears, her face reddened, and she hurried out in frustration.” [NYT]
Speaking of people without moral compasses: “[Chris] Christie on Monday vetoed legislation that would have required Trump to release his tax returns before seeking reelection in the state in 2020. New Jersey’s state legislature passed the legislation in March.” [HuffPost’s Alana Satlin-Horowitz]
THE OGE WENT TO JARED - And it wasn’t pleased. Jean Eaglesham, Juliet Chang and Lisa Schwartz: “Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, didn’t identify on his government financial disclosure form that he is currently a part-owner of a real-estate finance startup and has a number of loans from banks on properties he co-owns, according to securities filings. Mr. Kushner’s stake in Cadre — a tech startup that pairs investors with big real-estate projects — means the senior White House official is currently a business partner of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. GS +0.00% and billionaires including George Soros and Peter Thiel, according to people close to the company.” [WSJ]
Hive mind update: Twitter got a hold of David Brooks’ wedding registry. No link. This is a journey you have to go on yourself.
WE’VE SEEN THIS MOVIE BEFORE - It’s so hard to find good talent these days when you choose to proactively ignore all the good talent. Jeremy Herb: “The nomination of President Donald Trump’s Army secretary is in serious jeopardy, and he could be withdrawing as soon as this week, three sources familiar with the matter told CNN. Mark Green, Trump’s second pick to be Army secretary, is facing what the sources described as a difficult — if not insurmountable — path to confirmation amid a backlash over his controversial statements on LGBT issues, Islam and evolution. The sources said that Green’s withdrawal is not finalized, but it’s unlikely he would go forward because ‘there are questions whether he has enough support from either side of the aisle’ to get confirmed, according to one source.” [CNN]
HELLO, FELLOW TEENAGERS, WHAT KIND OF TUBULAR POLITICAL ACTIVISM ARE YOU DOING? - She’s running. Paige Lavender: “Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she’s not standing down after her loss to Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election. ‘I’m back to being an activist citizen ― and part of the resistance,’ Clinton said during an interview at a Women for Women event in New York Tuesday.” [HuffPost]
MURDOCH BRINGS IN NEW FOX NEW CO-PRESENT TO NOT SHAKE UP PLACE ONE BIT - Suzanne Scott will really bring a much-needed nothing to the troubled org. Ryan Grenoble: “Fox News Co-president Bill Shine resigned Monday amid allegations that he turned a blind eye to allegations of sexual harassment at the cable news channel. Although many people saw this move as encouraging, there’s no reason to expect his replacement, Suzanne Scott, will foster a less hostile environment. For starters, she doesn’t bring fresh blood to the operation. Like Shine, Scott has been at Fox News since the channel started in 1996. She’s part of the old guard. To wit: When former Fox News CEO Roger Ailes added miniskirts to the dress code for female employees, he reportedly turned to Scott to enforce it.” [HuffPost]
Oh: “An Arizona election official has hired additional staff to help get voters registered, arguing that an existing state law meant to create hurdles in the registration process is morally ‘wrong on its face,’ and pointing out that slavery was once considered legally justified.” [HuffPost’s Sam Levine]
Read this exquisite rant by HuffPost’s Zach Carter on the mindblowing idiocy of Congress barring funds for ACORN, which hasn’t existed since 2010.
CONGRATULATIONS TO ART - Big fans. Marina Fang: “Arts organizations won a major victory this week with increases for arts funding in the congressional budget agreement ― a rebuke of President Donald Trump’s proposal to gut federal support. The bill to keep the government operating until September, expected to pass both chambers of Congress later this week, allocates $150 million each to the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities ― $2 million more than the previous year. It preserves the current level of funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.” [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU’VE READ THIS FAR - Here’s a dog performing the blues.
Great line in Ben Terris’ profile of Jon Tester: “[A] party that has focused on expanding its base to include more women, minorities and young people are looking to a seven-fingered farmer from Montana to help stop the bleeding.” [WaPo]
- When they’re not eating your face or narcing you out for that eighth of purple kush in your messenger bag, police dogs can be very sweet.
- A primer on “late capitalism.”
- Speaking of late capitalism, here’s a $125 fajita.
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