Did you ever wonder what you would have done if you had been an adult living in Germany when Hitler rose to power? Did you ever wonder what you would have done during the civil rights movement of the 1960s?
Wonder no more. This is the moment. This is our time.
You are a part of a beautiful, incredible movement to save American democracy.
You are a part of millions and millions of people who love freedom and justice and equality.
You are a part of something bigger than you.
You are an integral, irreplaceable part of this amazing beauty.
You are linked with your brothers and sisters from all over America, yearning for better times.
These good news roundups are here to remind you of that.
We are here to remind you of the many, many people working with you.
We are here to remind you of the victories.
We are here to remind you of what hard work can bring.
We are here to remind you of the pillars of our democracy that remain.
We are here to remind you of the hope for a better future for America.
We are here to remind you that you are not alone.
And we are here to remind you that when we join together, they can’t turn us around.
I’m gonna keep on a walkin’, keep on a talkin’
Walkin’ into freedom land
On to the good news:
Great Election News
It makes perfect sense, really: When a midterm election is downhill for one party, it’s easy for things to go really downhill. Donors on one side get enthusiastic, while on the other they get despondent. One side gets excellent recruits because it’s a good year for its side; the other side gets the dregs. With enthusiasm comes high turnout in the primaries (which is likely to mean high turnout in the general election), while the other side finds it tough to drag people to the polls. That seems to be happening in this year’s midterms, according to the Cook Political Report’s David Wasserman
and what does that mean for our future?
While individual races might slide one way or another, it’s hard to see what event would suddenly shift the midterms in Republicans’ direction. The economy isn’t going to radically change between now and Election Day (unless there is some event that precipitates an economic crisis). The GOP-led House and Senate aren’t going to do much of anything between now and Election Day, so they cannot count on getting a boost from their legislative “accomplishments.” (By the way, can you recall a less productive year for the House?)
By contrast, it’s not impossible to imagine things might get even worse. Former aides (with tapes!) could pop up; Michael Cohen or other Trump associates might strike a plea deal. The trade wars could ratchet up, increasing pain in rural America, which depends on exports. And then there is health care, which is the driving issue for many Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents.
Red states are currently litigating to invalidate the Affordable Care Act, a reminder that the GOP has sought to push the ACA into the grave with no alternative. Andy Slavitt, former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, observes that the states (unopposed by the Trump administration) will be arguing to get rid of Medicaid expansion covering 12 million people, protection for preexisting conditions, guaranteed coverage on parents’ insurance up to age 26, the ban on lifetime limits, etc. Oral arguments are set for Sept. 10. Mark your calendars — I’m sure Democratic gubernatorial, House and Senate candidates will as they make the argument that Republicans want to “take away your health care.” In this case, they’ll have a point.
Another thing that might help us: The Coming Green Wave
if just one unorganized voting segment, the 60 million bird-watchers of America, sent a unified political message this fall, you’d have a political block with more than 10 times the membership of the National Rifle Association.
A Green Wave is coming this November, the pent-up force of the most overlooked constituency in America. These independents, Teddy Roosevelt Republicans and Democrats on the sideline have been largely silent as the Trump administration has tried to destroy a century of bipartisan love of the land.
This is not green goo-goo or fantasy projection. You can see and feel the energy in places ignored by the national political press.
“If D.C. comes for our public land, water or monuments again, they’ll have to come through me,” says Xochitl Torres Small, a Democrat with an even chance of taking a longtime Republican seat in New Mexico, in an ad showing off her political chops.
“We hunt and fish,” said Land Tawney, a Montanan who leads the fast-growing Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. “And we vote public lands and water.”
You will see it in Minnesota, where the 140,000 people who work in outdoor recreation are furious at Trump’s attempt to open a sulfide-ore copper mine near Boundary Waters Wilderness. You will see it in a half-dozen tossup congressional races in California, where the administration is mounting the biggest assault yet on public health, with its attack on emission rules.
If it’s self-interest powering the wave, such is the nature of politics. At a time of real peril for the things that most Americans love, the silent green majority has had enough.
Democratic mega-donor Tom Steyer’s group NextGen America is set to launch a new round of digital ads on Monday targeting millennial voters in seven competitive GOP-held districts.
The initial $250,000 ad campaign will specifically target GOP Reps. Jeff Denham (Calif.), Steve Knight (Calif.), Mimi Walters (Calif.), Dana Rohrabacher (Calif.), Brian Fitzpatrick (Pa.) and Dave Brat (Va.) for voting in line with President Trump’s agenda.
The end of each ad encourages young people to register to vote before November.
Also here to help us in November, the idiot-in-chief: Trump says ‘Democrats give up when I turn out’ on campaign trail
President Donald Trump said Wednesday that his involvement in the midterm elections “de-energizes” Democrats, according to The Wall Street Journal, once again forecasting a wave of GOP success in November’s races.
“I think the Democrats give up when I turn out,” Trump said. “If you want to know the truth, I don’t think it energizes them. I think it de-energizes them. I think they give up when I turn out.”
ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!
There is—brace yourself, dear reader—little evidence to suggest this is even remotely true. Polling from the Pew Research Center and others suggests that Democrats and Republicans are both historically excited to vote in the midterms, and that excitement is due predominantly to their feelings about Trump. And while the president says it was, for instance, his rally that propelled Troy Balderson to a “great victory” in Ohio’s special election last week, it’s just as likely that his appearance there failed to turn out the GOP base and instead mobilized Democrats. Balderson himself feared just that possibility, if Gov. John Kasich can be believed. At the very least, it’s clear Democrats didn’t throw in the towel after Trump’s MAGA show came to town. The race has not yet been officially called, but Balderson currently leads by less than one percentage point in a district Trump won by 11 and that Democrats haven’t represented in Congress for more than three decades.
The danger, as always, for Republicans is that the president won’t listen. Trump’s comments to the Journal show he is either unwilling or unable to accept the possibility that he’s anything but a closer.
Of course he won’t listen. This is what they get for making a deal with
the devil a malignant narcissist. All that matters to trump is trump.
After watching his other recent political investments crash spectacularly — Roy Moore in Alabama, and a Republican challenger who lost a primary challenge to Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner — Uihlein plowed $8 million in recent months into Nicholson’s bid for Senate in Wisconsin, for an astounding $11 million in all.
Nicholson lost by nearly 6 percentage points in Tuesday’s Republican primary. It was the latest in a string of costly defeats for Uihlein, who stormed on the scene this year to become one of the most prolific GOP donors of the 2018 election cycle.
Uihlein’s money in the gubernatorial contest went toward financing one of the most controversial political ads in Illinois political history — steered by Proft — that caricatured transgender individuals, women who seek abortions and immigrants.
And $1.8 million of Uihlein’s money helped fund a divisive primary challenge against Illinois House GOP leader Jim Durkin, who won handily.
“It’s a losing proposition to have these primary wars out there, and spend money on candidates who don’t ever win,” Brady said. “Now Uihlein’s losing primaries. Just to back these losing candidates again and again and again — the only people who make money off of that are consultants.”
Want to win some races, evil rich guy? Try financing some Democrats. We are going to wipe the floor with your fellows…
Legal Trouble Tends to Follow Criminals
Michael Cohen was originally opposed to paying adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep her quiet about an alleged affair with Trump, but changed his tune after the “Access Hollywood” tape emerged in October 2016, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.
why is this a big deal? Because, if true, this provides evidence that this was a campaign expenditure and thus totally illegal.
The Justice Department is investigating whether longtime Republican fundraiser Elliott Broidy sought to sell his influence with the Trump administration by offering to deliver U.S. government actions for foreign officials in exchange for tens of millions of dollars, according to three people familiar with the probe.
Broidy’s alleged activities were detailed in news reports earlier this year that cited hacked emails. The Los Angeles-based venture capitalist, who served as top fundraiser for the Republican Party and President Trump, has said that allegations against him are an effort by his enemies to smear him.
A federal court Friday threw out the Trump administration’s attempt to delay a chemical plant safety regulation written by the Obama administration.
In a major blow to the Trump administration, the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the Clean Air Act forbids the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from delaying the regulation’s enforcement, as it tried to do in June 2017.
It is the second big court loss in as many days as President Trump‘s EPA attempts to delay Obama administration rules, following a judge’s ruling Thursday that the agency improperly tried to delay President Obama’s Clean Water Rule.
A federal judge ruled Friday that the acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division must sit for a deposition in a lawsuit challenging the administration’s decision to add a question about citizenship to the 2020 census.
The Intelligence Community Fights Back
William H. McRaven, a retired Navy admiral, was commander of the U.S. Joint Special Operations Command from 2011 to 2014. He oversaw the 2011 Navy SEAL raid in Pakistan that killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
I would consider it an honor if you would revoke my security clearance as well, so I can add my name to the list of men and women who have spoken up against your presidency.
and what did he say about trump?
Through your actions, you have embarrassed us in the eyes of our children, humiliated us on the world stage and, worst of all, divided us as a nation.
If you think for a moment that your McCarthy-era tactics will suppress the voices of criticism, you are sadly mistaken. The criticism will continue until you become the leader we prayed you would be.
and he isn’t the only one: The nation’s top former intelligence officials come together to issue a stunning rebuke to Trump
The denunciations came in two waves.
One former senior intelligence official who read the op-ed sent me an email: “Takes my breath away. This is BIG!!!” Another wrote, again on background, that fellow officers—retired and active-duty—will take this as a sign of a major rupture in civil-military relations, brought on by Trump’s blatant disrespect for the national-security officials and the entire security system.
Then, late on Thursday night, 12 former CIA directors and deputy directors released a similar statement. By coincidence, the statement was written a few hours before McRaven’s op-ed appeared, according to two of the organizers.
One of the signers told me that some who signed the statement did so reluctantly, given the longstanding principle that intelligence and military officers should remain apolitical. However, the consensus was that Trump’s behavior has gone beyond the pale.
And the majority of those directors served either only Rs or both Rs and Ds.
and this one too:
New letter from 60 ex-CIA officials condemning Trump’s revocation of John Brennan’s security clearance.
“The country will be weakened if there is a political litmus test applied before seasoned experts are allowed to share their views.” pic.twitter.com/5MLuA6mGbn
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 17, 2018
Trump Shots Self In Foot (again)
An intriguing pattern is developing: President Trump resolves to strike a blow against the Russia investigation. He enlists his people in developing a rationale for his pending action that disguises its real motive. He carries out the act. He releases a carefully vetted statement elaborating that fake rationale. He then blows up the fake rationale by forthrightly declaring in a freewheeling interview that the act was really about the Russia probe all along.
The latest example of this: In an interview with the Wall Street Journal published Wednesday night, Trump openly declared that his revocation of former CIA director John Brennan’s security clearance was actually about the Russia investigation.
Why does Trump keep admitting to his real motive in such cases? The best answer is that Trump sees nothing whatsoever wrong with trying to derail the investigation.
Pretty stupid for a man being investigated for obstruction of justice…
“It’s almost as if the president is connecting the dots for Robert Mueller,” Tapper said Thursday’s edition of CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.”
I was on an MSNBC panel Thursday night with Elie Honig, a former federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, who suggested Trump’s revocation of security clearances could be construed as retaliation against witnesses. “It’s a federal crime — §1513 if anyone wants to look it up — to retaliate against someone for providing truthful information to law enforcement,” he said. “So he’s getting closer and closer to really dangerous ground here.”
Honig explained to me Friday that he didn’t necessarily think Trump’s revocation of Brennan’s security clearance would be a violation, given Brennan isn’t a major figure on the probe’s key events. But if he presses on and does it with others, Honig argued, it could.
President Trump is picking on the wrong guy if he thinks the revocation of John Brennan’s security clearances is going to intimidate or silence him. The man who is in many ways the architect of the war on militant jihadists is not going to be easily bullied.Former CIA director Brennan is not just any critic of Trump: unlike many others, he doesn’t come from the left. In fact, Brennan is the engineer of some of the most aggressive American efforts to eliminate jihadist terrorists.Brennan is already firing back at Trump in the New York Times, writing, “Mr. Trump’s claims of no collusion [with the Russians] are, in a word, hogwash.” This is a serious charge coming from a former director of the CIA.Trump just picked on the wrong guy
Trump on Friday said that he was canceling plans for a military parade, blaming a $92 million price tag and local politicians in Washington, D.C.
Omerosa is regular crazy, but also crazy like a fox
She’s laid a series of traps for the administration, and they’re starting to go off.Unlike her former mentor, whose inelastic deceptions crumble under the slightest scrutiny, Omarosa Manigault Newman repays close reading. I don’t mean her book (haven’t read it). I mean the publicity tour she’s on, which has twin goals: selling books and carefully dismembering the administration she served until she was fired in January.Trump does poorly against women who don’t have much interest in pretending to be something they’re not. Using slightly different methods, Stormy Daniels and Omarosa have both shown themselves to be effectively immune to the Trump attack machine, which uses NDAs as the carrot and public vilification as the stick. They both seem to understand his thinking and predict his reactions better than his advisers do. Omarosa is taking on a powerful ship, even if it’s showing signs of listing. She may lose. But that doesn’t mean he’s winning
The New York Times reported on Thursday that the former White House aide could have as many as 200 tapes that may contain information about the president and people close to him.
The newspaper reported that a number of Trump administration aides have expressed concern that they too will make an appearance on Manigault Newman’s other tapes, as she continues to release bombshell recordings in promotion of her new tell-all book, “Unhinged.”
Omarosa Manigault Newman has a stash of video, emails, text messages and other documentation supporting the claims in her tell-all book about her time in the Trump White House, a person with direct knowledge of the records told The Associated Press Friday.
Manigault Newman has made clear that she plans to continue selectively releasing the pieces of evidence if President Donald Trump and his associates continue to attack her credibility and challenge the claims in her book, “Unhinged.” She’s already dribbled out audio recordings of conversations, and video clips, texts or email could follow, according to the person who described what Manigault Newman has called a multimedia “treasure trove.”
She told PBS in a separate interview this week: “I have a significant amount, in fact, a treasure trove, of multimedia backup for everything that’s not only in “Unhinged,” but everything that I assert about Donald Trump.”
The perceived betrayal of a longtime female ally, and her perfectly executed Trumpian tactics, made the feud too personal to ignore.
In recent days, Trump has called Manigault Newman “crazed,” a “lowlife,” and a “dog” on Twitter. His campaign filed an arbitration suit against her seeking “millions.” And Trump told advisers that he wants Attorney General Jeff Sessions to have Manigault Newman arrested, according to one Republican briefed on the conversations. (It’s unclear what law Trump believes she broke.) Another Republican recounted how over the weekend Trump derailed a midterm-election strategy session to rant about Manigault Newman’s betrayal. In an effort to change the narrative, the White House announced yesterday that Trump had revoked former C.I.A. director John Brennan’ssecurity clearance. But that only ignited a new public-relations crisis. A former West Wing official compared Trump’s erratic behavior this week to the P.R. nightmare he created by attacking grieving Muslim-American Gold Star parents during the 2016 campaign. It’s a “death spiral,” the former official said.
Seth Meyer’s points out that even Fox news agrees.
Democrats Fight Back
Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) Thursday asked Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) to join a request for Judge Kavanaugh’s Staff Secretary records and to publicly release the documents now. Feinstein is the Judiciary Committee’s Ranking Member, and Leahy and Durbin are also senior members of the committee.
The senators emphasize the fact that documents that are currently “committee confidential” contain information indicating that Kavanaugh misled the Senate during his 2006 nomination hearing.
That is it for today. Looking to get more involved? Pod Save America launched Vote Save America and it has some great links, ideas, and activities. Other options:
Sing us out Aretha:
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