News Channel 5 Nashville: “If you believe Middle Tennessee’s newest congressman, he’s not only a businessman, he’s also an economist, a nationally recognized expert in tax policy and health care, a trained police officer, even an expert in international sex crimes.
“But an exclusive NewsChannel 5 investigation discovered that Andy Ogles’ personal life story is filled with exaggerations, a story that’s often too good to be true.”
If you’ve been feeling like all you hear about night and day — not just on the Sunday shows but ALL THE TIME — is Republicans…well, you’re not wrong.
Even if it’s to point out the problems springing forth from the GOP/Trump side of the world, the mainstream media can’t tear its focus from what Republicans say, do, think, eat, drink, etc., ad nauseam.
That Biden and Harris are of the no-drama Obama tradition is no excuse. There are other stories to cover beyond what Trump and his followers will or will not do in the next election (or even the August “reinstatement”). The press hanging on Trump’s every word and deed is part of what got him as our president for four years. And we all know how that worked out.
Let’s say we’ve learned something since 2016 and not keep repeating the mistakes that we’re still trying to repair.
As if you weren’t feeling great enough this morning following the incredible event last night featuring our new president-elect and the country’s first female vice president-elect. Maybe we’re still giddy but the posts on Twitter following Trump’s announcement of a big press conference at the Four Seasons — no, not THAT Four Seasons…well anyway, see for yourself.
Does it feel like something changed at that first presidential debate of 2020? Putting aside that it was exactly the kind of debate that the year 2020 deserved, it felt like during all that bellowing, bullying, heckling, and lying, Trump pushed a few more voters away.
I’m not a pollster. My observations are just that: the most elemental of research, what I see and hear around me.
The day of the debate, I heard Trump supporters talking about recording the show like it was a ball game their team was likely to win. I heard laughter about Biden. On a neighborhood walk, I saw mostly Trump/Pence signs. They appeared early and continued to outnumber Biden signs.
The day after the debate, I heard no chortling about how well Trump did. In fact no one mentioned the debate at all, the subject just too painful. When I came home, it seemed that my neighbors’ yards filled with Biden signs overnight. No matter where my eyes fell, there was a Biden/Harris sign in view.
The official polls reflecting post-debate sentiment won’t be out for awhile. But I’m cautiously optimistic they’ll back up what I’m seeing and show that Trump is sliding just a bit, losing support every time he opens that tight, pursed mouth to let all that anger out.
Watching Trump live-tweet Biden in person was hard. But it might be what it takes to turn enough Americans away from his nightmare presidency.
Trump used to rally his base with innuendo about shadowy others who threatened America: Mexicans are rapists and members of obscure, violent gangs. A Muslim travel ban would keep out terrorists. Orphaning the children of parents fleeing Central America by locking them away and concealing them from their families would ensure that only Americans would receive benefits from paying taxes.
Where we are now was a gradual and incremental shift but it’s easy enough to look back and see it coming. After all, Trump made his mark on the political scene by questioning Pres. Obama’s legitimacy and refusing to acknowledge that Obama was born in Hawaii, not Kenya.
We know the cascading inflection points ever since. Good people on both sides. Pardoning Sheriff Joe Arpaio before he could be sentenced for what the U.S. Dept. of Justice called “sadistic punishments” of Latino inmates. Trying to shut down the NFL because Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the national anthem in response to police killings of Black people. Calling Elizabeth Warren Pocahontas. Labeling a free press the enemy of the people. Saying the members of “The Squad,” four Democratic congresswomen, should go back to their countries although all but one were born in America. Calling Jews who vote for Democrats “disloyal.” Retweeting white supremacists. The list is endless and neither of us has that much time.
Now, as Poltico’s Michael Kruse, Renuka Rayasam, and Myah Ward note, Trump is no longer talking about us versus them. He’s ginning up the base by making it us against us. […]
I know most of you realize, I don’t need to tell you, that obviously we are living in a failed state.
And that our government’s reaction to this was too late, and that it was not enough. and a lot of what the federal government is supposed to do they’re not doing.
Because over the last few years — but certainly over the last 20 — whenever possible, Republicans tried to dismantle the government, everything they see as non-essential. And some of that being what was needed to respond to this properly.
So this is the goal: the failed state. This is the Republican vision. Let private enterprise take care of it. Great. So now we have people who need ventilators and masks and there’s a bidding war going on over who is going to make a profit on those items and which states they’re going to sell to. It’s all working out.
— Marc Maron, speaking on his WTF podcast about the COVID-19 pandemic, the death of Adam Schlesinger from the disease, the consequences and reality of running government like a business, and the catastrophe that is the Trump administration.
There are facts that won’t change as the COVID-19 virus spreads, and the bungling of the crisis by the Trump Administration is etched in stone.
A story by Reuters contrasts the South Korean response with that of the United States. It ain’t pretty for the U.S. Both countries discovered their first cases on the same day but South Korea acted decisively, pioneered drive-through testing, and slowed the spread of the disease.
South Korea’s swift action stands in stark contrast to what has transpired in the United States…the Koreans have tested well over 290,000 people and identified over 8,000 infections. New cases are falling off: Ninety-three were reported Wednesday, down from a daily peak of 909 two weeks earlier.
The United States, whose first case was detected the same day as South Korea’s, is not even close to meeting demand for testing. About 60,000 tests have been run by public and private labs in a country of 330 million, federal officials said Tuesday.
As a result, U.S. officials don’t fully grasp how many Americans have been infected and where they are concentrated – crucial to containment efforts.
“We’ve already seen how he did, how he acted, the week after impeachment. Can you imagine this man after re-election?”
— Ben Rhodes, deputy national security advisor to Pres. Obama and author
If impeachment taught us one thing, it has to be the importance of flipping the Senate from Republican majority to Democratic majority. Had Democrats controlled the Senate during the trial, evidence would have been pursued, witnesses would have been both called and believed, and Donald Trump would have been held accountable for his naked power grabbing.
Likewise, even if Donald Trump wins in November, with a Democratically-controlled Senate joining the Democratically-controlled House, he will get nothing done. He will be rendered the ineffectual red-faced crybaby that he is if he has no enablers to make his dreams reality.
Not convinced that the Senate races are more important in 2020 than the presidential contest? The next president will almost certainly get to nominate two Supreme Court justices — but those people will have to be approved by the Senate. We’ve already seen who Republicans approve. Having two more justices like the first two will change life as Americans, particularly progressive Americans, know it. […]
“If Mr. Mulvaney had information that contradicts the consistent and incriminating testimony of numerous public servants, Mr. Mulvaney would be eager to testify, instead of hiding behind the President’s ongoing efforts to conceal the truth.”
— CNN, quoting a statement from an official involved in the impeachment inquiry.
When a less chewed up and spit out Jeff Sessions vacated his Senate seat in 2017 to become Donald Trump’s first U.S. Attorney General, it forced a special election in Alabama to replace him. And that’s about the only way a Democrat like Doug Jones was ever going to win in that state.
The reason is straight ticket voting (STV). Alabama (and six other states*) still offer this option for those who have one concern when casting a ballot: party affiliation. […]
“It does make the conversation of the primary all about Trump, which is a good dynamic he had going for him in 2016, everyone being asked to react to Trump. We’re right now fighting a primary so all that matters is the party, and we can deal with the general after….”
— A GOP operative, quoted by the Washington Post, on the impact of Donald Trump being indicted.
“I don’t really know what it means, but I kinda like it, it’s long, it’s got a lot of vowels. We’ll go with that, that’s fine. I mean you can call me whatever you want, just as long as you also call me a winner because that’s what we’ve been able to do in Florida, is put a lot of points on the board and really take this State to the next level.”
— Gov. Ron DeSantis, when asked about Donald Trump’s “Ron DeSantimonius” nickname for him.
“For all his unusual strengths, Trump is defined these days more by his weaknesses — personal and political deficiencies that have grown with time and now figure to undermine any attempt to exploit the criminal case against him. … His base of support is too small, his political imagination too depleted and his instinct for self-absorption too overwhelming for him to marshal a broad, lasting backlash. His determination to look inward and backward has been a problem for his campaign even without the indictment. It will be a bigger one if and when he’s indicted.”
“I don’t know what he’s trying to do or what the goal is. Obviously, he doesn’t deal with foreign policy every day as Governor. So I’m not sure. I can’t speak to that. I can’t compare that to something else he did or said over the last few years because he doesn’t deal with it every day.”
— Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, distancing himself from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ apparent flip-flop on the war in Ukraine, on the Hugh Hewitt radio show.
Wall Street Journal: “A review of the websites of more than 3,500 companies, organizations and government entities by the Toronto-based company Feroot Security found that so-called tracking pixels from the TikTok parent company were present in 30 U.S. state-government websites across 27 states, including some where the app has been banned from state networks and devices.”
“Donald Trump asked his followers to sign a petition denouncing his potential arrest in New York,” Insider reports. “But signing this petition leads people straight to a page where they’re asked to give $3,300 or other suggested amounts of cash to his 2024 campaign.”
New York Times: “The report, by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body of experts convened by the United Nations says that global average temperatures are estimated to rise 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above preindustrial levels sometime around ‘the first half of the 2030s,’ as humans continue to burn coal, oil and natural gas.”