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President Trump urged Mitch McConnell to “get to work,” which is a remarkable statement coming from a guy who has spent more of the last eight months in country clubs than the situation room. “Nazi salutes are indefensible,” someone said ― something that will only have to repeated another 15 times this year, if we’re lucky. And Roger Wicker compared ongoing attempts to repeal Obamacare with the evacuation of Dunkirk, though wasn’t the point of Dunkirk that hundreds of thousands of people *didn’t* die? This is HUFFPOST HILL For Thursday, August 10th, 2017:
TRUMP CONTINUES ATTACKS ON MCCONNELL - Igor Bobic: ”President Donald Trump suggested Thursday that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) may be in trouble if he doesn’t deliver on such top administration items such as tax reform, repeal of the Affordable Care Act, and an overhaul of the nation’s crumbling infrastructure. Asked by reporters at his Bedminster, New Jersey, golf club whether McConnell should step aside from his leadership post, Trump said, ‘You can ask me that question’ if McConnell fails to make sufficient progress on the president’s agenda. ‘Mitch, let’s get to work and let’s get it done,’ Trump said. ‘They lost by one vote,’ he added, referring to last month’s failed Senate effort to repeal Obamacare. ‘For a thing like that to happen is a disgrace.’” [HuffPost]
TRUMP DECLARES NATIONAL EMERGENCY OVER OPIOID CRISIS - Again, you can’t just say, it’s a national emergency. There are forms and things. Marina Fang: “President Donald Trump is preparing to declare a national emergency on the opioid crisis, following a recommendation made by a White House commission last month. ‘The opioid crisis is an emergency and I’m saying officially right now it is an emergency. It’s a national emergency,’ he told reporters Thursday at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, following a lunch with Vice President Mike Pence. ‘We’re going to spend a lot of time, a lot of effort and a lot of money on the opioid crisis,’ he continued, adding that he was ‘drawing documents now’ to make the official declaration. Trump’s comments mark a reversal from earlier this week, when he was briefed on the matter in a meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price and other White House officials. According to Price, Trump did not think the situation required an official emergency declaration, an action which would allow him to allocate additional government resources to fighting the epidemic.” [HuffPost]
DONALD TRUMP IS A VERY TOUGH MAN...VERY TOUGH - Can something that happens in real life be ratio’d? Paige Lavender: ”President Donald Trump argued Thursday his ‘fire and fury’ comments directed at North Korea may not have been tough enough. ‘Frankly, the people who were questioning that statement, was it too tough? Maybe it wasn’t tough enough,’ he said at his resort in Bedminster, New Jersey, according to a White House pool report. “They’ve been doing this to our country for a long time, for many years, and it’s about time that somebody stuck up for the people of this country and for the people of other countries. Trump would not comment on what’s tougher than ‘fire and fury.’ He argued the U.S. has the support of others when it comes to responding to threats from North Korea. ‘We’re backed 100 percent by our military, we’re backed by everybody and we’re backed by many other leaders,’ he said.” [HuffPost]
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If our inbox is any indication, Maxine Waters has made it: “TMZ EXCLUSIVE: Congresswoman Maxine Waters Says Avoid War with North Korea at All Costs” [TMZ]
PUTIN IS LAUGHING AT US - You see, normally what would happen in these cases is *curls up into fetal position* Peter Baker: “President Trump offered gratitude rather than outrage on Thursday for Russia’s decision to force the United States Embassy in Moscow to slash its personnel by 755 people, despite earlier bipartisan condemnation from other American leaders who had protested the Cold War-style move. Mr. Trump’s comment was in keeping with his practice of not criticizing President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia, no matter how tense relations between the two countries have grown…. ‘I want to thank him, because we’re trying to cut down on payroll and as far as I’m concerned I’m very thankful that he let go of a large number of people because now we have a smaller payroll,’ Mr. Trump told reporters at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J.” [NYT]
TALENTLESS FRAUD FINDS HOME IN TRUMP ADMINISTRATION - Bob Dreyfuss: “Yet so far – likely thanks to support from Bannon – both [Seb Gorka and his wife, Katharine Cornell Gorka, an adviser in the Department of Homeland Security] have defiantly stayed in place. According to one insider, Gorka’s dubious qualifications may have saved him. ‘The White House tried to find him a job at another agency,’ says the source. But no luck: ‘Nobody wanted him.’ … ‘Gorka’s thesis is about as legitimate as if he had been awarded it by Trump University,’ says Andrew Reynolds, a professor at the University of North Carolina who looked into Gorka’s background. He says that of the three people who served as endorsers of Gorka’s Ph.D., two didn’t have any academic credentials whatsoever, and a third was György Schöpflin, a right-wing Hungarian politician who, Reynolds adds, was a Gorka family friend and once suggested studding a Hungarian border fence with pig heads to send a message to Muslim refugees.” [Rolling Stone]
Ralph Northam is up with his first VA-Gov general election ad, highlighting his support for Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion.
SHAKE-UP AT THE U.N. - It’s never too early to get your people working on that 2024 (2020?) bid. Kambiz Foroohar: “U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley has lost two of her top aides, key departures that come at a time of growing international tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. Haley’s Chief of Staff Steven Groves resigned, as did her communications director Jonathan Wachtel. Haley said on Twitter Wednesday it was because of ‘family concerns.’ The departures also come ahead of Haley’s trip to Vienna to review Iran’s nuclear activities with the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency. Groves, an adviser who had arrived from the conservative think tank Heritage Foundation had argued for the U.S. to ‘sever relations’ with UN’s Human Rights Council for criticizing Israel and to pull out of the Paris climate change agreement.” [Bloomberg]
Wouldn’t you know it, CNN has standards about its on-air contributors. “CNN ended its relationship with political commentator Jeffrey Lord after he tweeted ‘Sieg Heil’ on Thursday. ‘Nazi salutes are indefensible,’ a CNN spokesperson said in a statement. ‘Jeffrey Lord is no longer with the network.’ Lord has been one of President Donald Trump’s biggest backers on the network.” [HuffPost’s Sam Levine]
ERRRRRR, MAYBE NOT - “U.S. Senator Roger Wicker said Republican efforts to repeal and replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, known most commonly as Obamacare, will continue despite failed efforts in both the House and Senate…. In addressing the women’s group, Wicker used a couple of World War II references to describe Republicans’ efforts to pass new health care legislation. He compared the Republicans efforts on health care to Dunkirk, the subject of a popular film recently released that dramatizes the evacuation of British forces from a French beach as France fell to the Nazis in 1940. ‘The French and British faced a “setback” in fighting the Germans,’ he said. ‘And that is what the Senate has faced with health care.’” [Columbus Dispatch]
BECAUSE YOU’VE READ THIS FAR - Here’s a cat ruining someone’s morning routine.
YEAH, WHY NOT - Andrew Cuomo’s undoubtedly awful overreaction to this will really be what cinches it as a great story. ″On Aug. 4, The Wall Street Journal caused a stir when it reported that Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon was thinking about challenging New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in next year’s gubernatorial election…. On the same day the Journal article appeared in its print edition, a political operative who worked as the lead digital strategist for the grassroots organization People for Bernie and has made campaign websites for progressive candidates in the past launched what appeared to be a campaign website for Nixon’s candidacy. CynthiaNixonForGovernor.com was anonymously purchased on Aug. 4. But an email address hidden in the page’s source code showed a contact button and Squarespace hosting page run by Caleb-Michael Files…. [H]e acknowledged that he did create CynthiaNixonForGovernor.com, but insisted that he was ’not related to her campaign at all.’” [Daily Beast]
- Jabba the Hutt, insult comic.
- Allow us a bit of victim blaming: These frozen pizzas that spilled onto a highway deserved it. Frozen pizzas are disgusting and these ones had what was coming to them.
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