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Donald Trump pivoted from bemoaning American carnage in Chicago to advocating American Carnage in leaky safe houses in Chisinau, Moldova. Trump issued executive order to keep refugees out of the country ― yet another banner day for his millions of Christian backers. And Trump threatened to send “the Feds” into Chicago, because that’s precisely why Alex Jones and his ilk voted for the guy: to have the Feds send troops into municipalities. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, January 25th, 2017:
DETAILS ON TRUMP’S MUSLIM CRACKDOWN - Try reading this to Sean Spicer’s glass-cage-of-emotion rant about no one understanding him. Jessica Schulberg and Ryan Grim: “[A] draft version of a White House executive order obtained Wednesday by The Huffington Post [includes]: Block refugee admissions from the war-torn country of Syria indefinitely. Suspend refugee admissions from all countries for 120 days. After that period, the U.S. will only accept refugees from countries jointly approved by the Department of Homeland Security, the State Department and the Director of National Intelligence. Cap total refugee admissions for fiscal year 2017 at 50,000 ― less than half of the 110,000 proposed by the Obama administration Ban for 30 days all ‘immigrant and nonimmigrant’ entry of individuals from countries designated in Division O, Title II, Section 203 of the 2016 consolidated appropriations act: Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen...Expedite the completion of a biometric entry-exit tracking system for all visitors to the U.S. and require in-person interviews for all individuals seeking a nonimmigrant visa. Suspend the visa interview waiver program indefinitely and review whether existing reciprocity agreements are reciprocal in practice.” [HuffPost]
TORTURE MAKING A COMEBACK - Charles Savage: “The Trump administration is preparing a sweeping executive order that would clear the way for the C.I.A. to reopen overseas ‘black site’ prisons, like those where it detained and tortured terrorism suspects before former President Barack Obama shut them down.” [NYT]
TRUMP CALLS FOR INVESTIGATION INTO HIS OWN FRAUDULENT ELECTION - Dan Merica, Eric Bradner and Theodore Schleifer: “President Donald Trump called on Wednesday for ‘a major investigation’ into voter fraud, following through with baseless claims he has made since November’s election alleging millions of illegal votes during the general election without citing any evidence. The probe into voter fraud may not be limited to the 2016 presidential election and could center on large states where Trump didn’t necessarily compete, according to White House press secretary Sean Spicer, who added, without citing evidence, that problems with illegal voting occurred in bigger states. ‘I will be asking for a major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and ... even, those registered to vote who are dead (and many for a long time). Depending on results, we will strengthen up voting procedures!’ Trump wrote in two consecutive tweets.” [CNN]
TRUMP SIGNS ORDER BUILDING BORDER WALL, STRIP SANCTUARY CITIES OF FEDERAL GRANTS - This will really throw a wrench into Chicago’s ability to deal with crime but whatever! Elise Foley and Paige Lavender: “President Donald Trump on Wednesday began to make good on his campaign promise to fight unauthorized immigration, when he signed executive orders instructing construction of a wall on the southwest border, a crackdown on so-called sanctuary cities and directives that would make effectively every undocumented immigrant a priority for deportation. He signed the two orders during a visit to the Department of Homeland Security, where he also addressed about 300 employees of the agency, whom he said have for too long been unable to do their job to enforce immigration law. He made clear that his concern would not be undocumented immigrant and discussed them almost solely in terms of those who have killed Americans and legal residents.” [HuffPost]
DELANEY DOWNER - Michael Walker and Shelly Betancourt didn’t have a fight after Donald Trump won the election in November. They just stopped talking. [HuffPost]
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TRUMP RUNNING A FANTASTIC RECRUITMENT CAMPAIGN FOR ISIS - We’ll deal with their increased numbers when we go in and take the oil, no doubt. Akbar Shahid Ahmed: “Taken as a whole, these policies and utterances risk straining critical alliances and prompting blowback, terrorism experts argue. Researchers in the field have warned for years against creating the impression of a broad clash of civilizations, with the U.S. as a Christian superpower battling Islam. They note that Trump’s rhetoric on the campaign trail already showed the risks inherent with such a framework. ‘When Trump says hateful things about Muslims, it proves that jihadists are right to fight against the West, because the West is against Islam,’ one ISIS fighter told researchers writing for Foreign Affairs magazine last summer. Earlier in the year, The Associated Press found that an al Qaeda-affiliated recruitment video featured footage of Trump suggesting a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. And the then-candidate’s constant questioning of Muslims’ place in Western societies…” [HuffPost]
TRUMP USING UNSECURED PHONE IN WHITE HOUSE (BUT HER EMAILS!, ETC) - This, taken with the report that Bannon committed Trump-stylized voter fraud makes us want to gargle thumbtacks. Maggie Haberman: “His mornings, he said, are spent as they were in Trump Tower. He rises before 6 a.m., watches television tuned to a cable channel first in the residence, and later in a small dining room in the West Wing, and looks through the morning newspapers: The New York Times, The New York Post and now The Washington Post. But his meetings now begin at 9 a.m., earlier than they used to, which significantly curtails his television time. Still, Mr. Trump, who does not read books, is able to end his evenings with plenty of television…’They have a lot of board rooms,’ he said of the White House, an apparent reference to the Cabinet Room and the Roosevelt Room...Mr. Trump’s wife, Melania, went back to New York on Sunday night with their 10-year-old son, Barron, and so Mr. Trump has the television — and his old, unsecured Android phone, to the protests of some of his aides — to keep him company.” [NYT]
Read Haberman’s tweetstorm about Trump’s impulse control and you, like the commander-in-chief, probably won’t sleep well tonight.
CHICAGO’S TOP COP STUMPED BY TRUMP’S TV TWEETING - Trump is going to be extra disappointed to learn that Gary Oldman isn’t available to take this guy’s job. Jeremy Gorner, Jason Meisner and Annie Sweeney: “President Donald Trump’s vague tweet threatening to ‘send in the Feds!’ if Chicago cannot get a handle on its rampant gun violence left law enforcement agencies scrambling Wednesday to read between the lines. In an exclusive telephone interview with the Tribune, Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said he was baffled by the meaning of the president’s tweet, which was sent Tuesday night as the city’s latest violence statistics were being aired on national cable news. ‘The statement is so broad. I have no idea what he’s talking about,’ Johnson said. At the White House daily briefing Wednesday afternoon, press secretary Sean Spicer sought to clarify Trump’s remark, telling reporters that the president was upset about “turning on the television and seeing Americans get killed by shootings” but giving no indication the president was close to ordering in troops.” [Chicago Tribune]
MAR-A-LAGO INCREASES CLUB FEE - This might seem ethically dubious ― and a bad investment, to boot ― but guess who’ll be laughing when Donald Trump gives them first dibs on the Svalbard Global Seed Vault after the apocalypse? Robert Frank: “Mar-a-Lago, the Palm Beach resort owned by the Trump Organization, doubled its initiation fee to $200,000 following the election of Donald Trump as president. People close to the Florida resort said the increase took effect Jan. 1. The resort had been considering an increase for some time, said those people, who declined to provide their names because they were not authorized to speak on behalf of the company. A spokesperson for the Trump Organization did not respond to CNBC’s request for comment. But the timing is likely to add to criticism that the Trump Organization is trying to benefit from the president’s election. Indeed, shortly after the fee hike was revealed, Barack Obama’s former top ethics lawyer told MSNBC that the increase is a ‘not very subtle exploitation of the fact that the club’s figurehead is now President of the U.S.’” [CNBC]
THE VOTER FRAUD IS COMING … FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE - Inside the White House, that is. Jon Swaine: “A senior White House adviser to Donald Trump is registered to vote in two different states, a practice that the US president wrongly claimed amounted to electoral fraud on Wednesday as he called for an inquiry. Stephen Bannon registered to vote in New York shortly before the presidential election last year, after the Guardian disclosed that he was registered to vote at a vacant house in Florida where his ex-wife had once lived...In a pair of tweets early on Wednesday morning, Trump said that arrangements such as Bannon’s were unacceptable as he appeared to threaten a crackdown on access to the ballot box.” [Guardian]
STATING UNCONTROVERSIAL FACTS IS NOW POLITICAL OPPOSITION - Michael McAuliff: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) piled onto President Donald Trump’s false claims of voter fraud Wednesday, saying she feels sad for a man who is so insecure over losing the popular vote that he has to make ‘strange’ claims. Trump told Pelosi and other lawmakers at a White House meeting earlier this week that he actually won the popular vote because 3 million to 5 million ‘illegals’ voted for Hillary Clinton. Clinton won the popular vote by 2.9 million votes. ‘There is no evidence to support what the president has said, and I think we made that really clear to him,’ Pelosi told reporters on Capitol Hill.” [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU’VE READ THIS FAR - Here’s a baby anteater.
RICHARD SPENCER IS NOT WELCOME AT HANK’S OYSTER BAR, THANK YOU VERY MUCH - A warning to all the NoVa Bros with their high-and-tight haircuts browsing West Elm in Old Town with your girlfriends: Someone might mistake you for a Nazi and punch you. Priya Anand: “Residents of Alexandria — the Northern Virginia city where white nationalist Richard Spencer set up shop this month — are complaining to the city about their new neighbor. The city has received at least 25 complaints about Spencer’s new rental in Alexandria, just outside of Washington, DC, city spokesman Craig Fifer told BuzzFeed News. Spencer, president of the National Policy Institute, a white nationalist group, told The Atlantic the Alexandria space will serve as a hub for the alt-right movement. Flyers have circulated in Alexandria, notifying local residents that Spencer is in town and instructing people who “take issue with this” to call the city manager’s office.” [BuzzFeed]
- Here’s a less-than-perfect guide to America’s most punk national park, Badlands.
- We really want this cow scratcher installed in our office.
- The best movie recommendation webapp we’ve come across.
@cFidd: Congrats to the guy who had Chicago in the “Where Will Trump Invade First?” pool
@josheidelson: Just reached a former federal official via contact form on his pseudonymous poetry website. He asked why I didn’t look him up in phone book
2016: “Don’t boo Mike Pence.”
2017: “Don’t punch Nazis.”
2018: “Don’t run so fast when Donald Jr. and Eric are hunting you for sport.”
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