Before I get to the rest of the good news, I wanted to say how heartened I am by the renewed activism that has sprouted out due to the family separations at the border. People are calling, marching, organizing, donating…. I have never been prouder to be a member of the resistance.
The shift in the past week is amazing. The momentum is on our side. Morality is on our side. History is on our side.
Sometimes people ask “What are you all resisting?” This. This is what we are resisting. We are resisting the slide into hatred and bigotry and heartlessness and lies.
And we are going to win.
I’ll talk later about the amazing work Democrats are doing, but they are not the only ones speaking out and that shows me that the dam will break eventually.
We, the people, are making our voices heard:
The American people have spoken out
New Quinnipiac poll: American voters oppose, 66 – 27 %, the policy of separating children and parents when families illegally cross the border,
Republican voters support the policy, 55 – 35%.
— Ken Dilanian (@KenDilanianNBC) June 18, 2018
There has been a lot of press about those Republican numbers, but Nate Silver points out that they are pretty low too (for Republicans):
It’s true that a majority of Republicans approveÃ¢ÂÂbut it’s a narrow majority (~55%) when Trump usually gets 80-90% of the GOP backing him. Plus, independents are overwhelmingly opposed. Headlines that focused on high levels of Republican approval are sort of missing the point.
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) June 18, 2018
A Washington state lawmaker has mobilized numerous immigrant advocacy groups to call President Trump out on his zero tolerance border policies at nationwide protests on June 30. The American Civil Liberties Union, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, MoveOn, and the National Domestic Workers Alliance are among the organizations expected to take part in more than 100 events across the country. The Families Belong Together demonstrations will also include a large rally directly across from the White House to demand an end to the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance” policy. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) told MSNBC on Monday the aim is to force Trump to take responsibility for the family-separation policy that has widely been condemned as inhumane. “The end game is really to say, ‘This is about Trump,’” despite the fact that the president “would love to make this… about Democrats,” Jayapal said. Trump and other White House officials have repeatedly blamed Democratic lawmakers for the policy announced by Trump’s attorney general in April.
Want to attend the DC march or one in or near your hometown? Click here to sign up! I signed up for a local one and there seem to be hundreds scheduled already for June 30th. Let’s do this!
in less than three days, a California couple has raised over $3 million — and counting — through Facebook to help reunite undocumented families that have been separated at the border.The Willners originally started their fund-raising campaign named “Reunite an immigrant parent with their child” on Saturday morning with the goal of $1,500. But soon their efforts went viral.By Monday night, the campaign surpassed its new $3 million goal with over 78,000 people donating to the cause.“The run rate over the last 3 hours was nearly $4k every minute,” posted Dave Willner on Facebook.RAICES confirmed to CNN that the organization has been in contact with the couple since Saturday.
Even Reasonable People on the Right Are Against This
A Republican governor won’t send National Guard troops to the border
Massachusetts’s Charlie Baker cited the “inhumane treatment of children” as the reason for canceling the deployment.
The administration’s current family separation policy is an affront to the decency of the American people, and contrary to principles and values upon which our nation was founded. The administration has the power to rescind this policy. It should do so now.
Ben Sasse has spoken out:
“The administration’s decision to separate families is a new, discretionary choice. Anyone saying that their hands are tied or that the only conceivable way to fix the problem of catch-and-release is to rip families apart is flat wrong.”
I live in a border state. I appreciate the need to enforce and protect our international boundaries, but this zero-tolerance policy is cruel. It is immoral. And it breaks my heart.
These images are eerily reminiscent of the Japanese American internment camps of World War II, now considered to have been one of the most shameful episodes in U.S. history.
Alan Dershowitz called on President Trump to stop the U.S. Border Patrol from separating children from their parents at border detention centers.
“You have to end this policy,” Dershowitz said, explaining that the U.S. Border Patrol is “imposing a trauma” on the children, who are being brought by parents seeking asylum.
Speaking on “Fox & Friends,” the Harvard Law School professor emeritus disagreed with former CIA Director Michael Hayden’s comparison to Nazi death camps, but said the policy runs counter to American values.
Former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly on Monday said President Trump should “reverse course” on his administration’s “zero tolerance” policy that separates families at the U.S.-Mexico border.
“The government should know how bad this looks and how innocent children are actually suffering,” O’Reilly, a longtime Trump supporter, tweeted. “That kind of scenario is unacceptable to most Americans as exemplified by former First Lady Laura Bush’s withering criticism.
“The Trump administration will not win on this one and it should reverse course today.”
You know you have lost when Bill O’Reilly and I agree on something.
Representative Fred Upton, Republican of Michigan, called it an “ugly and inhumane practice,” and called for an immediate end to it, as did other Republican lawmakers, including Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, Republican of Florida, who called the practice “totally unacceptable.” And Representative Mia Love, Republican of Utah, whose parents emigrated from Haiti, issued a statement condemning what she called the administration’s “horrible” separation policy.
not that this means trump will change his policy quickly (although he should). His hardcore base loves this kind of thing and he cares more about their admiration than anything else. So this is going to be a tough battle. However, it is one that we can win and will win if we keep fighting it (which we will). In the meantime…
The Backlash Will be Painful for Trump
Stephen Miller thought separating migrant families would provoke Democrats and bolster Trump. The backlash will be painful for his boss and his party.
The trouble for Miller—and the White House—is that amoral trolling is not good politics.
The outrage to Miller’s policies does not dissipate like the anger around his college newspaper columns; it becomes critical fuel for action and opposition. The response to the travel ban—mass protests and organized legal action—helped crystallize early opposition to the administration, dealing it a major political blow and ending whatever “honeymoon” it enjoyed with the public. The DACA crisis spawned by Miller has split conservatives in Congress and could cost some moderate Republicans their seats come November. Trump’s new “zero tolerance” approach to border crossings—in which immigration agents separate parents from their children and treat asylum-seekers as criminals— may win Miller some plaudits from conservative pundits, but it too is a fundamentally rotten policy that is likely to backfire on the administration.
Stephen Miller may have successfully trolled his opposition, but like the attempted “Muslim ban,” his weapon of choice is a moral travesty and a political disaster in the making. Instead of bolstering his boss, it may weigh him down with another crisis, jeopardizing his party’s hold on Congress and the administration’s ability to operate with impunity.
Trump’s immigration crackdown is upending Republicans’ midterm campaign strategy.
Republicans want to talk about tax cuts. Instead, they’re talking about kids in cages.
Rather than touting lower taxes and a steady job market, House and Senate Republicans are being forced to answer for President Donald Trump’s contentious immigration policies — whether it’s separating migrant kids from their parents, removing DACA protections or building a border wall. And that’s likely bad news heading into November.
Even as the White House blames Congress for the crisis at the border, GOP lawmakers are struggling to craft a proposal that unites their own party, let alone one that can win bipartisan support and become law. And with no congressional solution in sight, Hill Republicans worry that Trump’s immigration crackdown could swamp their success on the economy and overshadow all the things they want to run on in the midterm elections.
“It’s something, as a dad, that bothers me. It’s something that bothers a lot of people,” said National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Steve Stivers of Ohio. “I’m sure on its own, if you ask people, it probably doesn’t look good.”
“The whole thing is a hot mess,” said Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.)
Hugh Hewitt, a leading conservative media voice, raised the prospect that the family separation crisis could become “the Republicans’ new Katrina and the president’s new Katrina” in an interview with Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) on Monday.
So keep it up. This is a heartbreaking, disgusting, and deeply disturbing atrocity. There is nothing “good news” about this crisis.
Instead, the good news is that most of America is recoiling from this. Most of America is fighting this. And the majority of us will end this policy as soon as we possibly can.
On to the good news:
Russia Russia Russia
Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said it is “difficult for me to believe” that President Donald Trump did not know about any of the contacts between his campaign and Russians that took place over the course of the 2016 presidential campaign.“With each subsequent revelation of yet another meeting between someone from the Trump camp and Russians, it gets harder and harder to believe that he didn’t know about at least some of them,” Clapper said in a Monday interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on “The Situation Room.” “Just statistically, it’s illogical. … It’s difficult for me to believe that he didn’t know about some of these meetings.”“I said a year ago, I thought I could make a case for obstruction. Now I’m sure I can and even more sure that Mueller can prove conspiracy with Russia beyond any doubt. Too much evidence in plain sight.”
A lawyer who turned down overtures from Cohen’s camp said he did so because he wasn’t experienced in plea deals, which he said was one of the areas of strength Cohen had been seeking in new legal representation.
It is hard to overemphasize how huge a Cohen flip would be in the fight against trump. As someone else wrote, he doesn’t just know where all the bodies are buried, he is the one who buried them!
Mueller has been asking about the meeting. Stone claims he forgot about it till now.
Jessie reported on this yesterday, but I wanted to dig a little deeper to show how important this is. He claims he forgot about it??!!! That is insane. If you can forget about that, how many contacts with the Russians seeking dirt did you have???!!! These are clear lies, and lies being told just because they found out that Mueller knows that this meeting took place.
imho, it is not an issue of if but when Stone gets indicted by Mueller.
If Roger Stone and Michael Caputo told investigators what they said publicly, they could have real problems.
These denials so contradict what we just found out, in fact, that neither man is trying to parse them to square them with the new information. Instead both — rather remarkably — contend that they simply forgot about the Greenberg proffer until special counsel Robert S. Mueller III reminded them last month. And now both are amending their testimony
But unlike other previously undisclosed meetings, this one was very, very clearly denied — and repeatedly — by both parties.
“I didn’t talk to anybody who was identifiably Russian during the two-year run-up to this campaign,” Stone told The Post in April 2017. “I very definitely can’t think of anybody who might have been a Russian without my knowledge. It’s a canard.”
Stone reasserted this in a March interview with Chuck Todd. “I never had any contact with any Russians,” he said.
While Stone denied such a contact publicly, Caputo went a step further, saying in emphatic and unmistakable terms that he told the House Intelligence Committee that he had no contact with Russians.
Why prophetic? Because it’s likely a preface to the report or complaint that special counsel Robert Mueller will bring. The alleged crimes described by Underwood are not similar to those being investigated by Mueller. But the behavior is.
One stumbling block to public understanding of the Mueller probe, in addition to a steady stream of propaganda and lies designed to undermine it, is that it’s hard for even a cynic to accept the premises of what is being investigated.
U.S. history simply doesn’t offer a lot of reference points for a major-party political candidate who so casually subverts the law and sells out the nation’s highest values. How many Richard Nixons are there?
To believe the accusations that Trump colluded with Russia, laundered vast amounts of money and/or put American foreign policy on the auction block in return for the enrichment of his family requires an awkward leap of faith. You have to believe this leader is both profoundly corrupt — far more so than Nixon — and staggeringly sloppy — again more so than Nixon.
This is essentially the portrait that Underwood paints in the detailed accusations against the head of the Trump Foundation: that of a shady huckster who engages in “persistently illegal conduct” and is buffoonishly sloppy along the way.
It took the attorney general’s office months to investigate this narrow corner of the Trump universe – even though the evidence was lying around in plain sight. Mueller’s investigation is far broader and more consequential. His complaint may yet take a while. But it should be a doozy.
Good Election News
political commentators and strategists write with some awe of President Trump’s outrageous, gutsy strategy of ginning up his base with one more attack on black athletes, one more crackdown on Central American mothers and children on the Mexican border, one more assault on Obamacare, one more tariff on imports.
Mr. Trump shows as much interest in winning over less enthusiastic Republicans as he does in winning independents and Democrats — which is to say, not much.
Mr. Trump’s base strategy brands the Republican Party as sexist, racist, xenophobic and anti-immigrant, which magnifies the anti-Trump reaction among Democrats. But it also leaves a tenth who are conservative Catholics and a fifth who are nonreligious conservatives more tentative in their support of the Republican Party — and it pushes away the quarter of Republicans who remain ideologically moderate. The harder the president bangs these drums, the more Democrats become enraged and a segment of Republicans gets demoralized. The more he trashes and defeats his Republican opponents in primaries, the more these voters may contemplate different political options.
Mr. Trump’s base strategy has allowed him to take over the Republican Party and to marginalize and defeat those who will not get with the program, but it has also unified Democrats around their values and created an opportunity for anti-Trump Americans to engage with these Republican voters, even (and especially) if Mr. Trump will not.
The Republicans Suck at Governing
which is great news, because their goals are awful.
Republicans on Capitol Hill are giving up on what might be their last best chance to overhaul Medicare, just as they’re losing their leading champion on the issue, House Speaker Paul Ryan.
The quiet surrender on a subject that’s energized GOP fiscal hawks for the better part of a decade comes as new projections show Medicare’s trust fund in its worst shape since the recession, partly because of Republicans’ other chief obsession: their sweeping tax cuts.
That’s left conservatives unsure how to agitate for a politically unpopular Medicare overhaul — one that President Donald Trump detests — and raises new questions about who will take up the entitlement reform mantle as Ryan heads for the exits.
“It takes two houses of Congress and a president to want to do that,” said Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), lamenting the party’s apathy over Medicare. “No matter who’s been in the House or who’s been speaker, we have not been able to get entitlement reform done.”
Aw, you guys, they may not be able to achieve their lifelong dream of taking healthcare away from the needy! So sad. /s
The first clues over whether President Donald Trump will risk a shutdown fight this fall over his border wall will come Monday in a private meeting with Sen. Shelley Moore Capito.
Trump is increasingly frustrated with Congress’ failure to fund the wall — his No. 1 campaign promise — and has threatened a shutdown in September if he doesn’t get his way.
But the West Virginia Republican, who chairs the Homeland Security spending panel, has a tough task ahead of her.
Though Trump wants as much wall money he can squeeze out of Congress, Capito needs to get 60 votes in the Senate, and there’s no way Democrats will go along with a major budget boost. She‘s also got to cut a deal with Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), the ranking member of the panel whom Trump loathes for helping to derail Ronny Jackson’s nomination to be secretary of veterans affairs
But Republicans are privately worried they will never be able to pass a spending bill that satisfies Trump. The president is already clashing with his party on immigration — trashing a bill crafted by House GOP leadership in a free-wheeling press appearance Friday, before a spokesman walked back that criticism.
The key to this comes from the last budget bill he signed. Afterwards the far right came after him for signing a bill with lots of spending that didn’t pay for the racist wall. Reports are he was totally freaked out by that. Remember, all he cares about is his base. To make the racist base happy, he needs a wall.
If he can’t get his racist wall, he may very well refuse to sign the bill and close down the government. That will NOT be a popular thing to do in September (which is close to November).
Another White House official, Kelly Love, left on Friday for a position at the Department of Energy.
Other aides, many of them veterans of the Trump campaign, have been fired, sent to agencies or nudged to look for other employment, or have simply left for more lucrative, less stressful jobs. At least two additional staffers are expected to leave in the coming weeks, according to administration officials and Republicans close to the White House.
To avoid giving the appearance that staffers are being purged en masse, and possibly attracting negative headlines, senior officials have tried to ensure people leave one by one.
But the slow parade of exiting aides has sent the already low morale in both the press and communications shops, which collectively have employed roughly three dozen staffers — and which have been without an official director since the departure of Hope Hicks in March — plummeting.
“The inside baseball of who will get purged, and when, is spiraling out of control,” said one former White House aide. “People do not even care about the broader communications strategy when it’s all about internal warfare. Who cares how you roll out a legislative plan, when you’re trying to screw over the person to the left or right of you?”
why is this good news? well a good com. staff is essential for making messages popular and getting stuff done.
Sources cited by Politico on Monday say John Kelly told a confidant he is giving up on trying to rein Trump in and will let the president do what he wants even if that results in impeachment because, as Politico paraphrased it, “at least this chapter of American history would come to a close.”
Democrats Are Awesome
All 49 Democrats back Dianne Feinstein’s bill to reverse Trump’s family separation policy now that Joe Manchin has announced his support.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 18, 2018
Democrats are fighting hard against the immoral placement of children in concentration camps.
Here w/ six other members of Congress including @RepJerryNadler @RepEspaillat at ICE detention facility in Elizabeth, NJ making surprise Father’s Day visit. They are refusing to let us in. We will #Resist #KeepingFamiliesTogether pic.twitter.com/gZ3zzKCDos
— Hakeem Jeffries (@RepJeffries) June 17, 2018
The family separation spectacle has galvanized the party across the ideological spectrum.
When a half-dozen Democratic lawmakers finished a whirlwind Father’s Day tour of immigration facilities in the Rio Grande Valley, their sense of outrage was palpable.
So was their feeling that they had the political high ground — on an issue that’s struck an emotional chord with voters like few Washington fights do, and that promises to reverberate as the November midterm elections near.
When it comes down to it, the separation of families at the border is “on all of us, not just the Trump administration,” Rep. Beto O’Rourke told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” Sunday morning.
“At the moment that [these children] finally thought they had reached safety, refuge, were going to petition for asylum, they were taken from their parents, and are now in Tornillo with no idea of when or if they will see their mothers or their fathers on this Father’s Day again,” the Texas Democratic congressman said.
Democrats expanded their campaign Sunday to spotlight the Trump administration’s forced separation of migrant children from their families at the U.S. border, trying to compel a change of policy and gain political advantage five months before midterm elections.
Against a notable silence on the part of many Republicans who usually defend President Trump, Democratic lawmakers fanned out across the country, visiting a detention center outside New York City and heading to Texas to inspect facilities where children have been detained.
In McAllen, Tex., where several Democratic lawmakers toured a facility, Rep. Vicente Gonzalez of Texas estimated that he saw about 100 children younger than 6.
“It was orderly, but it was far from what I would call humane,” he said.
Seven Democratic members of Congress spent Sunday morning at the Elizabeth Contract Detention Facility in New Jersey, waiting nearly 90 minutes to view the facilities and visit five detained immigrants.
“This is unfair and unconstitutional,” said Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.).
Several Democratic lawmakers also got a firsthand look at the impact of President Trump’s “zero-tolerance” policy of separately detaining children and parents trying to cross the border, which has led to about 2,000 children being separated from their parents in the past 45 days.
The lawmakers chose Father’s Day for a trip to the southern Texas border to draw attention to the plight of divided families and demand that Trump end the policy.
“The zero-tolerance policy means zero humanity and makes zero sense,” Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) said at a news conference following the lawmakers’ tour.
In Congress, Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Dianne Feinstein introduced a bill dubbed the “Keep Families Together Act” that would prevent the separation of immigrant children from their parents.Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler, the ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee, is planning to introduce the companion bill, a source told CNN. On Sunday, he tried to enter an ICE Detention Center in Elizabeth, New Jersey, alongside a group of Democratic lawmakers, where they had to wait for two hours before they were finally allowed to go inside.“What we saw here today was heartbreaking,” the New York Democrat said in a statement after the event. “These are people trying to escape extreme violence and poverty. What is happening to them is despicable. It is a sin.”He continued, “Trump and Sessions say they are following laws. That is a lie. There are no laws requiring families to be ripped apart. Trump claims Democrats are to blame for families being broken up. That is a lie.”
and Democrats are fighting on multiple fronts. for example:
Rep. Nadler and Cummings lead a group of congresspeople in calling on Jeff Sessions to explain the legal rationale for DOJ’s refusal to defend key protections in the Affordable Care Act. https://t.co/CiiN3IqXfE pic.twitter.com/tSCj4Kc0Nn
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 18, 2018
It is hard for the Democrats to break through with their messages (given the 24 hour trump shit show) but they are working hard to do what they can as a minority party with little leverage. I couldn’t be prouder to be a Democrat.
Other Good News
His website is often blamed for contributing to the decline of the newspaper industry, but now Criagslist founder Craig Newmark is giving $20 million to train future journalists at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism.
In honor of the donor, the school will be renamed the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York.
“I think right now in this country, we’re in a kind of information war and people of good will need to stand up and do something real,” Newmark said in an interview with CNNMoney.
Concrete is the most abundant man-made material on earth. There’s a good chance you’re standing on it right now, and it’s holding up the buildings around you.
But concrete has an emissions problem. Its essential ingredient, cement, has a huge carbon footprint.
But a Canadian startup has invented a new system for making concrete that traps CO2 emissions forever and at the same time reduces the need for cement.
CarbonCure’s system takes captured CO2 and injects it into concrete as it’s being mixed. Once the concrete hardens, that carbon is sequestered forever. Even if the building is torn down, the carbon stays put. That’s because it reacts with the concrete and becomes a mineral.
There just isn’t much of a pattern in the data to back up the idea that Mueller’s support is declining across the board.
shifting public opinion about Mueller doesn’t necessarily indicate that people’s minds are changing about the investigation. A look at Mueller’s favorability ratings over the past year shows that more and more people have an opinion about the special counsel. And as he’s transitioned from being a relatively obscure bureaucrat to a fixture in the news, the number of people who dislike Mueller has certainly grown (particularly among Republicans), but most polls show that his support is expanding as well. This suggests that the Russia investigation isn’t losing traction among Americans overall — it’s just becoming more polarizing. And that was likely inevitable.
When Donald Trump flew to Los Angeles — as he did regularly during his reality-television career — he usually bypassed two mansions he owned there to take up residence in the exclusive bungalows of the Beverly Hills Hotel
Details of Trump’s hotel stays have been a closely held secret among employees known for impeccable service and discretion in handling billionaires, visiting royalty and superstars. But now, the records of his visits could become critical evidence in what is evolving into a serious legal threat, brought by a woman accusing him of improper sexual advances. The New York case is being closely followed by constitutional lawyers because of the role it could play in determining whether state lawsuits may proceed against a sitting president.
As the case moves into discovery, attorneys for former “Apprentice” contestant Summer Zervos have subpoenaed the Beverly Hills Hotel for records of Trump’s stays during five years when he frequently traveled to the West Coast. Last week, New York’s highest court said the lawsuit could proceed after repeated attempts by President Trump’s attorneys to stop it, but the court did not rule on the merits of the case. Another appeal is pending. A lower-court judge has set a January deadline for Trump to answer questions under oath about his alleged Beverly Hills Hotel encounter with Zervos and other allegations in her complaint.
the Zervos case has the potential for a sweeping impact. She is the only one of the dozen or more women accusing Trump of unwanted touching to have moved forward with a lawsuit against him. Her case alleges that he defamed her when he branded her and other women as “liars.”
Hers is the first legal action to open the president’s private life to discovery, and her attorneys have sought records from the Trump campaign about women who made allegation
A federal judge on Monday permanently struck down Kansas’s proof-of-citizenship voter registration law, handing down a blistering ruling against Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, one of the country’s most vocal advocates of voter-ID laws.
In the 118-page ruling, U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson wrote that the state’s requirement that voters show proof of citizenship during registration violated both the Constitution and the National Voter Registration Act.
Robinson struck down the stringent law, and ordered Kobach to take six additional hours of continuing legal education that “pertain to federal or Kansas civil rules of procedure or evidence.”
I write the GNR Tuesdays and Saturdays. Starting next week, and for most of the rest of the summer, Niftywriter is going to be writing the Tuesday ones (I will still be here Saturdays). This will give me a little more family time for the summer with my kids done with school.
Niftywriter has filled in before and is amazing. I can’t wait to read her diaries! A big thanks to her and to the rest of this team that brings the good news seven days a week ❤️
That is it for today. Keep calling. Keep donating. Keep working to end this awful policy AND to help us win in November. Because honestly? That is the only way we can ensure that these awful things don’t occur.
We can, and will, win in the end. So proud and lucky to be in this with all of you ❤️