Thursday Open Thread | Trump slams AG Jeff Sessions in NYT Interview

President Donald Trump said he never would have appointed Jeff Sessions as attorney general had he known he’d recuse himself from the Russia investigation, and warned that special counsel Robert Mueller would cross a red line if he expanded the investigation to include Trump family finances, in a wide-ranging interview with the New York Times on Wednesday.

“Sessions should have never recused himself and if he was going to recuse himself he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else.” President Donald Trump

“Jeff Sessions takes the job, gets into the job, recuses himself, which frankly I think is very unfair to the president,” Trump said. “How do you take a job and then recuse yourself? If he would have recused himself before the job, I would have said, ‘Thanks, Jeff, but I’m not going to take you.’ It’s extremely unfair — and that’s a mild word — to the president.”

Trump also accused former FBI Director James Comey of lying, and said that when Comey warned him in January that a former British spy had compiled a dossier of sensational allegations against Trump, he interpreted it as a threat. “In my opinion, he shared it so that I would think he had it out there [as leverage],” Trump said. Trump went on to say Comey’s testimony before Congress was “loaded up with lies,” though he did not specify them.

Despite reports that Mueller may be investigating Trump for possible obstruction of justice for firing Comey, Trump said he didn’t believe it. “I don’t think we’re under investigation,” he said. “I’m not under investigation. For what? I didn’t do anything wrong.”

Trump was also critical of Mueller, alleging conflicts of interest by him and lawyers in his office, and said the Russia investigation should not delve into his family’s finances. “I think that’s a violation. Look, this is about Russia,” he said.

Speaking about Russia, Trump dismissed recent reports that he had a second, previously undisclosed meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the recent G-20 meeting, saying they exchanged “pleasantries” between dinner and dessert, that they talked for about 15 minutes and the subject was Russian adoptions. “Which is interesting because it was a part of the conversation that Don had in that meeting,” Trump said, referring to a June 2016 meeting attended by his son, Donald Trump Jr., son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner and then-campaign manager Paul Manafort with a Russian lawyer who had offered them damaging information on Hillary Clinton.

Trump again denied he had knowledge of that meeting, and said he didn’t need any help at the time. “There wasn’t much I could say about Hillary Clinton that was worse than what I was already saying,” he said.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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88 Responses to Thursday Open Thread | Trump slams AG Jeff Sessions in NYT Interview

  1. rikyrah says:


    Of Course HBO Greenlit “Confederate” Because White Guys Get Funding For Every Idea (Even Bad Ones)
    Damon Young, 7/20/17

    Confederate — the upcoming HBO series from Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss that rewrites history to depict an America where the Confederate states successfully seceded — might actually end up being a good show. I don’t have much faith that it actually will be. This series is a re-imagining of America’s relationship with race, racism, slavery, class, and how each affects the micro, day-to-day minutiae of our existences, our national, cultural, and racial zeitgeists, and our existential understandings of what it means to be “White” and “Black” and “American.” These are canyonesque concepts for anyone to wrestle with — even those who’ve specifically devoted their social, political, professional, and academic lives to studying, examining, deconstructing, and making art about race. And there’s nothing in either Benioff’s or Weiss’s backgrounds or careers that suggests they’re equipped to do so. But, to (mis)quote Calvin Candie, a character from another big-budget re-imagining of slavery, they have my curiosity and my attention. And they might surprise me.

    What hasn’t surprised me is that an idea this ambitious from two people who don’t seem to have any real experience with the nuanced and explosive subject matter is getting greenlighted. Because these two people are White men. And White men get their ambitious, insane, reckless, and inane ideas funded all of the fucking time. They get money for TV shows and movies no one will watch. Investments in start-ups no one asked for. Funding for apps no one will use. Loans for restaurants no one will eat at. Grants for condominium complexes no one will live in. Capital for websites no one will visit. Deals for books no one will read.

  2. rikyrah says:

    From BJ

    @Cheryl Rofer: Man, those tax returns must be the fucking Rosetta Stone


  3. rikyrah says:

    Mueller has begun asking for tax returns , says NYT. Beginning first with Manafort.

  4. Ametia says:
  5. Here we go, folks!

    BreakingNews: WaPo: Trump asking advisers about ability to pardon aides, family members and himself.

  6. Lisa Bloom get on my last damn nerves. We never hear her channel energy to berate & bash cops who walk free after killing innocent black people. Why is that?

  7. Liza says:

    Arrested for a crime he did not commit, Pedro Hernandez is the new Kalief Browder at Rikers Island. #FreePedro— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) July 20, 2017


  8. rikyrah says:


    It’s Baaaaacccckkkk (Sort Of, Maybe)

    by Tom Levenson
    3:33 pm on July 20, 2017.

    It is impossible to overstate the Republican commitment to ripping health care from millions, while taking a chainsaw to our medical system.

    Rand Paul has just announced that he will vote “Yes” on the Trumpcare motion to proceed as long as he is given a clean vote on his amendment, which would simply repeal the ACA (which, given the CBO evaluation of a similar proposal, would lead to something on the order of 17 million without health care next year, and 32 million Americans left in the cold by 2026).

    That’s still not enough to get Trumpcare to the floor if the other declared “Noes” hold out, but each senator McConnell can peel away significantly increases the pressure on those who remain opposed. And certainly, Paul’s cave reminds us that counting on any Republican to maintain a party-base-unpopular position as a matter of principle is a mug’s game.

    • Ametia says:

      Why don’t they just VOTE, already, instead of saying what they’d vote for or not vote for?


  9. rikyrah says:

    This Man Has Our Nuclear Codes
    by Martin Longman
    July 20, 2017 12:40 PM

    It took me several tries to complete the task of reading the president’s interview with the New York Times because the man is so stupid and so morally repellent that I found it necessary to take breaks to protect myself from the psychic pain of absorbing what he had to say. The man is a pathogen and our country has a compromised immune system.

    I could pick almost anything to highlight from the interview to make my point, but I am going to go with the part that should have been the easiest for him. In the middle of the president erroneously explaining that the F.B.I. only began reporting to the Department of Justice during the Nixon administration “as a courtesy,” Ivanka showed up unannounced with her daughter Arabella who just turned six on July 17th. The president invited his granddaughter to show off her impressive knowledge of Chinese.

    How could this go wrong?


    Trump manages to take a feel-good moment and turn it into an opportunity to assert the genetic superiority of his family. His granddaughter speaks Chinese which is cute and praiseworthy. That’s great, but family protective services should show up to shield her from the racist influence of her grandfather.

    Literally everything about the interview is obnoxious and grating. Trump demonstrates an inability to understand historical facts that extends from what happened moments before in a meeting with Republican senators to the causes of Napoleon’s defeat during his invasion of Russia. Every story he tells is not just wrong but hit-yourself-in-the-head-with-a-hammer wrong.


    What shines through it all, though, is his unapologetic intention to obstruct justice. He didn’t want Sessions to bow out of his appointment because he was compromised. He didn’t want Sessions to testify truthfully. He wanted Sessions to kill the investigation and he recused himself instead. For that, he cannot be forgiven.

    This is all more evidence that Trump is providing against himself in the obstruction case. And he seems blissfully unaware of it, which is maybe the most disturbing thing of all.

    The man has the nuclear codes and is responsible for handling our foreign affairs, including North Korea’s efforts to put nuclear weapons on ICBM’s that can reach the American shore.

  10. OJ got paroled.

    • Ametia says:

      Psst! For the one black ex football player who denied his blackness until he was charged for murdering his white wife and her lover, COUNTLESS other black men will be shot dead by the Po Po for being black and still breathing.

    • Liza says:

      Yeah, and some people’s heads are exploding. But OJ was serving time for an armed robbery conviction and he was apparently a model inmate. So, in this case, or at least as far as the parole is concerned, the justice system worked. They should not have kept him incarcerated for an unrelated crime he was tried for and acquitted, rightly or wrongly, and they didn’t.

      Philando Castile’s mother has to live with an acquittal. So does Freddie Gray’s mother. And so does Terrence Crutcher’s family. It’s going to be just as hard for them as it has been for the Browns and the Goldmans because justice was denied, but they are expected to accept the decision of the jury and/or judge and move on. Become activists, whatever, but the criminal justice system is done with them. Murder acquittals are final.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Bloomberg: Special counsel’s probe is “examining a broad range of transactions” involving Trump’s businesses
    — Mark Berman (@markberman) July 20, 2017

    More detail: the Mueller probe has absorbed the @PreetBharara money laundering investigation. Also @SecretaryRoss might want to lawyer up.
    — Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) July 20, 2017

  12. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s Incoherence On Display in New York Times Interview
    by Nancy LeTourneau
    July 20, 2017 11:26 AM

    Last night the New York Times published an article about the interview they conducted with Donald Trump. There were three big takeaways that are the subject of a lot of discussion today. Trump said:

    1. He wouldn’t have hired Jeff Sessions as Attorney General if he knew he was going to recuse himself from involvement in the Russia investigation.

    2. James Comey shared the Steele dossier with him as a form of blackmail.

    3. Mueller’s investigation would cross a red line if they looked into his family’s finances beyond any relationship to Russia.

    These are all important stories. But the Times also published a partial transcript of the interview. I found that even more disturbing because, once again, we hear a President of the United States being practically incoherent. As an example, I’ll provide a lengthy quote from when Peter Baker asked Trump about the email exchange between Don Jr. and Rob Goldstone. He specifically asked about the part where Goldstone said that the information to be shared was “part of Russia and its government’s support of Mr. Trump.” Here is how the president responded:

  13. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    “In 1944 Irene Morgan refused to change seat on segregated VA bus”
    Excerpt from article linked in tweet:

    In Morgan v. Virginia, decided on June 3, 1946, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Virginia law requiring racial segregation on commercial interstate buses as a violation of the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.

  14. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    SNCC (Student NonViolent Coordinating Committee) digital history archive:

  15. yahtzeebutterfly says:
    Excerpt from article linked in above tweet:

    The D.C. chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and eight youth advocacy organizations are calling on school and city officials to take action against schools that have kicked students out of school for misbehaving but did not record those absences as suspensions.

    The organizations, which have formed a group called the Every Student, Every Day Coalition, issued a list of demands, which include an audit of suspension records and legislation to ban the use of “do not admit” lists. The move comes after The Washington Post reported that at least seven of the District’s 18 high schools underreported suspensions.

    D.C. Public Schools reported that suspensions drop­ped 40 percent from 11,078 in 2013-2014 to 6,695 in 2015-2016, but some education advocates are questioning whether DCPS is truly doing a better job keeping students in class.

    [Some D.C. high schools are reporting only a fraction of suspensions]

    The Post found that during at least the past two years, some schools sent daily messages to staff listing students who had misbehaved and were not permitted to enter the building, according to emails The Post obtained under the Freedom of Information Act. But attendance records show that only a fraction of those cases were recorded as suspensions.

    Some students barred from school were marked as present, while others were marked as attending an “in-school activity” or absent without an excuse.

    “These practices are incredibly disturbing, disappointing, and disheartening. Suspensions discourage and disconnect students from educators, making school dropout and failure much more likely,” the coalition of advocacy organizations said in a statement. “Undocumented suspensions allow schools to push students out of the classroom and school building without notice, process, review, or regard to DC and federal law.”

  16. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    The “Harlem Hell Fighters” was one of the most decorated U.S. units in World War I:

  17. rikyrah says:

    What Robert Mueller Learned From Enron
    JULY 13, 2017

    It seems safe to assume that nobody read Donald Trump Jr.’s damning emails with a Kremlin-connected lawyer more closely than Robert Mueller.

    Mr. Mueller, the special counsel investigating possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russian officials, will surely be looking into the now infamous meeting, including the president’s son; the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner; and his campaign chairman at the time, Paul Manafort.

    As he does, will Mr. Mueller be able to build a case that goes all the way to the top?

    That could depend on what lessons he learned from overseeing the task force that investigated one of the biggest fraud cases in American history: the collapse of the energy giant Enron.

    In December 2001, Enron filed what was then the largest corporate bankruptcy in American history. Just weeks later, Mr. Mueller, then the F.B.I. director; Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson; and the assistant attorney general for the criminal division, Michael Chertoff, formed the Enron Task Force, an elite team of F.B.I. agents and federal prosecutors assigned to investigate and prosecute crimes related to the Houston-based energy trader. Andrew Weissmann, who recently joined Mr. Mueller’s Russia team, later led the task force.

    The Enron team was patient and learned from its investigative and trial mistakes. After its yearslong run, it set a high-water mark for complex, high-profile financial inquiries, successfully indicting and imprisoning almost all of the company’s top executives.


    But the Enron Task Force may have given Mr. Mueller a hide thick enough to protect him from those attacks. More than that, Enron honed skills he’ll need now in the Russia investigation, which may well touch on money laundering, secrecy havens, complex accounting maneuvers, campaign finance violations — and multiple lies.

    As I talked with Mr. Mueller’s former Enron Task Force colleagues in recent weeks, it became clear to me that he believes the Enron team was successful — and understands why. That means his special counsel team will probably move more slowly than people anticipate. But it might also shock people with its aggressive investigative and prosecutorial tactics. If Mr. Trump and his advisers committed crimes, Mr. Mueller will find them.

  18. rikyrah says:

    Ignoring threats, special counsel examines Trump’s finances
    07/20/17 11:32 AM
    By Steve Benen

    In his interview with the New York Times yesterday, Donald Trump lashed out at an alarmingly wide number of officials in the Justice Department and the FBI, most notably former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who’s overseeing the investigation into the Trump-Russia scandal.

    Among other things, the president accused Mueller of overseeing an investigatory team rife with conflicts of interest and, as the Times’ report noted, warned that Mueller and his team shouldn’t examine Trump’s finances. The president didn’t specify what would prompt him to fire the special counsel, but when asked about an examination of his finances, Trump said, “I think that’s a violation.”

    Comments like those make it all the more significant to see reports like this one from Bloomberg Politics, which said the special counsel’s investigation is, in fact, examining “a broad range of transactions involving Trump’s businesses as well as those of his associates.”

    FBI investigators and others are looking at Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump’s involvement in a controversial SoHo development with Russian associates, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow and Trump’s sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch in 2008, the person said.

    Agents are also interested in dealings with the Bank of Cyprus, where Wilbur Ross served as vice chairman before he became commerce secretary. They are also examining the efforts of Jared Kushner, the President’s son-in-law and White House aide, to secure financing for some of his family’s real estate properties.

  19. Liza says:

    KING: Mike Vick was actually right about Colin Kaepernick
    Shaun King
    NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, July 19, 2017, 10:34 AM

    With a very stern, reflective tone, Vick said:

    “The first thing we got to get Colin to do is cut his hair. I don’t think he should represent himself in that way in terms of the hairstyle. Just go clean cut. Why not? Perception and image is everything. I love the guy to death, but I want him to succeed on and off the field, and this has to be a start for him.”

    What Mike Vick was saying is that if Colin Kaepernick wants to play in the league again, he needs to lie his ass off by hiding every single hint of internal and external blackness he can. The NFL, after all, doesn’t have a problem with long hair. In fact, some of its most popular and marketable players, like Troy Polamalu and Clay Matthews, are famous for it, on and off the field. Colin’s problem isn’t his big hair — it’s what it represents to the fragile white sensibilities of NFL fans and team owners. When Samoan players across the league have allowed their huge hair to grow out of their helmets, it’s a spectacle that NFL owners view with a wink and a nod because they don’t see the corresponding culture that comes along with it as any sort of threat.

    Colin’s afro, on the other hand, is done in the spirit of the Black Panther Party. It is done to connect him with the legacy and history of many of the leaders he loves and admires. So, in that sense, Mike Vick is right. If Colin Kaepernick decided to begin living a lie by cutting off all of his hair, denouncing his fight against police brutality, apologizing for supporting activists and movements in America and around the world, shunning his blackness, and began simply posing alongside flashy cars with his shirt off, maybe, just maybe, he’d be given a shot again.

    What Mike Vick revealed in his comments is the painful truth about America. To get back into the league, Colin Kaepernick must go out of his way to not only reject his blackness, but remove as many possible signs of it, and maybe even apologize for ever embracing it in the first place.

  20. rikyrah says:

    Trump trips over his own ignorance on health care
    07/20/17 10:01 AM—UPDATED 07/20/17 10:17 AM
    By Steve Benen
    A couple of months ago, Donald Trump sat down with Time magazine and boasted that once the debate over health care started in earnest, “In a short period of time, I understood everything there was to know about health care.”

    He didn’t appear to be kidding. In fact, after meeting with Senate Republicans yesterday to urge them to pass some kind of health care bill, the president told the New York Times, “[T]hese guys couldn’t believe it, how much I know about it. I know a lot about health care.”

    I wish that were true. It’s not.

    During the public portion of yesterday’s White House meeting, Trump made a series of bizarre claims about his party’s proposal, making clear that he had absolutely no idea what he was talking point. He said the Republican proposal would offer “better coverage for low-income Americans” than the Affordable Care Act, which isn’t even close to being true. Trump added that the GOP plan is “more generous than Obamacare,” which is bonkers.

    Towards the end of his public remarks, the president added, “Your premiums will be down 60 and 70 percent. People don’t know that. Nobody hears it. Nobody talks about it.” In reality, people don’t know that or talk about it because it’s spectacularly untrue.

    At a meeting among federal policymakers on overhauling the nation’s health care system, the most ignorant person in the room was also the one leading the discussion – which generally isn’t a good sign.

  21. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    A great grandson of Sally Hemmings:

  22. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    “One Hit Wonders: Where Are They Now? Black Female Performers From The ’80s”

  23. rikyrah says:

    The Third American Civil War

    Liberal Librarian
    July 20, 2017

    You may wonder why I’m writing about the “third” American Civil War. Wasn’t there only one?

    The First Civil War was what is more commonly referred to as the Revolutionary War. About a third of the colonists sided with the British, and many fought in Loyalist contingents against the revolutionaries.

    The Second Civil War is the one we all know about, when the southern slave holding states seceded to preserve their peculiar institution. That trended with the First Civil War, in that Loyalist sentiment was strongest in the South.

    We are now in what many people are calling a Cold Civil War.

    We see it all around us. A large portion of the country is at each others’ throats. There is no common ground. The part which supports Donald Trump—which seems to be shrinking—does so solely because it aggravates the other part. We have radical leftists who want to burn everything down which doesn’t meet their purity standards. Many liberals don’t care about why people voted for Trump, seeing them as lost causes.

  24. rikyrah says:

    Automatic voter registration expands to its ninth state
    07/20/17 09:20 AM—UPDATED 07/20/17 09:34 AM
    By Steve Benen

    As recently as early 2015, a grant total of zero states had automatic voter registration. As of yesterday, however, AVR is now the law in nine states.

    Gov. Gina Raimondo has signed a bill that allows qualified voters to automatically register.

    The new law would provide automatic voter registration for eligible citizens when they’re obtaining or renewing a driver’s license, unless the person chooses to opt out…. The bill passed last month in the House and Senate and had bipartisan support. Rhode Island becomes the ninth state to put in place automatic voter registration.

    Illinois appears likely to become the 10th state to adopt the policy, with the legislature already having approved AVR and Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) is expected to sign it. What’s more, the issue will be on the statewide ballot in Nevada next year, and the consensus is it’s likely to pass.

    Circling back to our previous coverage, this is a policy that’s tough to argue against. When it comes to registering to vote in the United States, the burden has traditionally been on the individual: if you’re eligible to vote, it’s up to you to take the proactive steps needed to register.

    Automatic voter registration, which already exists in many of the world’s democracies, flips that model. The idea is exactly what it sounds like: states would automatically register eligible voters, shifting the burden away from the individual. Those who want to withdraw from the system can do so voluntarily without penalty, but otherwise, Americans would be added to the voters rolls automatically.

  25. rikyrah says:

    NEW: Trump administration used Obamacare promotional money to run a major PR effort against the law
    — Sam Stein (@samstein) July 20, 2017

    Wow — HHS retrofitted website, replacing enrollment links with anti-Obamacare propaganda
    Via @samstein
    — Jonathan Cohn (@CitizenCohn) July 20, 2017

  26. rikyrah says:

    A much warmer statement from the Democratic former president, who battled McCain in 2008, than from the current Republican one.
    — Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) July 20, 2017

  27. rikyrah says:

    The CBO just scored the latest Senate repeal bill.
    17,000,000 Americans will lose coverage by NEXT YEAR.
    32,000,000 by 2026.
    Raise hell.
    — John Dingell (@JohnDingell) July 19, 2017

  28. rikyrah says:

    A lesser known McCain fact: In 2005, Uzbekistan’s govt massacred over 700 of its own citizens at a protest. Few in US spoke out. McCain did.
    — Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) July 20, 2017

    It meant something to Uzbek refugees I knew at the time who saw broader apathy in the US. Some of McCain’s remarks:
    — Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) July 20, 2017

  29. rikyrah says:

    With Trump wanting the FBI Director to report directly to him, there should be NO further movement on confirming nominee Chris Wray.
    — Pé Resists (@4everNeverTrump) July 20, 2017
    We do not know if Wray made a personal promise to Trump to work for HIM, not the country. That’s how Trump views the entire US Gov.
    — Pé Resists (@4everNeverTrump) July 20, 2017

  30. rikyrah says:

    New: Trump now accusing Comey of essentially blackmail, and suggests Mueller must avoid Trump family finances.
    — Ari Melber (@AriMelber) July 19, 2017

  31. rikyrah says:

    Game of Thrones creators think they have their next hit: a show about an America where slavery was never abolished
    — Lois Beckett (@loisbeckett) July 19, 2017

    If HBO wants a series about the Civil War so bad, here’s an idea – PICK UP UNDERGROUND.
    — ReBecca Theodore (@FilmFatale_NYC) July 19, 2017

  32. rikyrah says:

    John McCain has been a walking pre-existing condition from the moment he stepped off the plane from Vietnam. Let alone his FOUR PREVIOUS BOUTS WITH CANCER.
    But, he’s never had to deal with that fact of life, because:
    1. His wives were rich
    2. He would get treatment from that socialist entity known as the VA.

    That he could purse his lips to take away healthcare from others…..
    you know my feelings…


  33. rikyrah says:

    “No, nobody’s going home because this is life or death.” – @ChrisMurphyCT
    Don’t let up, because the GOP won’t. Keep calling: (855) 999-1663
    — (@MoveOn) July 19, 2017

  34. rikyrah says:

    This has happened a few times before: Trump doesn’t seem to understand the difference between health insurance & life insurance.
    — David Lauter (@DavidLauter) July 20, 2017

    The president appears to confuse life insurance and health insurance.
    — Justin Wolfers (@JustinWolfers) July 20, 2017

    In Trump’s understanding, a 21-year old gets health insurance for $12 a year.
    — Justin Wolfers (@JustinWolfers) July 20, 2017

    It seems Trump might think health insurance is the same as the “low monthly price” life insurance from TV ads…
    — Daniel Dale (@ddale8) July 20, 2017

    My conclusion after six months fact-checking every word out of Trump’s mouth: there’s no strategy, he’s just a liar.
    — Daniel Dale (@ddale8) July 20, 2017

  35. rikyrah says:

    I do chuckle at these stories. They are the elite of a foreign country. I pretty much assume that they all know English.

    I KNEW the Europeans didn’t speak English to Dolt45, and I was right..LOL

    Japan’s First Lady pretended not to speak English to avoid conversing with racist Trump?
    Not all heroes wear capes
    — Nerdy Wonka (@NerdyWonka) July 20, 2017

  36. rikyrah says:

    GOP plan would gut Medicaid by over $800 BILLION DOLLARS. What is $200B supposed to accomplish?
    The gotdahmn nerve
    — Nerdy Wonka (@NerdyWonka) July 20, 2017

  37. rikyrah says:

    My friend’s husband died of glioblastoma in AZ. They wrote a letter to McCain begging for his help. He advised them to move.
    — Jessica Roy (@jessica_roy) July 20, 2017

    Here’s a link to the story:
    — Marc Oxborrow (@marcxist) July 20, 2017

  38. rikyrah says:

    How the Election Integrity Commission Is Preparing to Purge Voter Rolls
    by Nancy LeTourneau
    July 20, 2017 7:30 AM

    Yesterday Trump’s so-called “Election Integrity Commission” held its first public meeting. On the same day, Vanita Gupta, former acting director of the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice, broke some news by telling us how the commission is coordinating with AG Sessions to purge the voter rolls.

    Gupta begins by acknowledging that the commission’s massive request for personal data on voters has gotten a fair amount of attention. She then notes an additional request that went largely unnoticed.

    Lost amid the uproar over the commission’s request was a letter sent at the same time by the Justice Department’s civil rights division. It forced 44 states to provide extensive information on how they keep their voter rolls up-to-date. It cited the 1993 National Voter Registration Act, known as the Motor-Voter law, which mandates that states help voters register through motor vehicle departments.

    The letter doesn’t ask whether states are complying with the parts of the law that expand opportunities to register. Instead it focuses on the sections related to maintaining the lists. That’s a prelude to voter purging.

    Usually the Justice Department would ask only a single state for data if it had evidence the state wasn’t complying with Motor-Voter. But a blanket request to every state covered under that law is virtually unprecedented. And unlike the commission, the Justice Department has federal statutory authority to investigate whether states are complying with the law.

    So here’s how it will go down. The commission will create a national database of voters and look for duplicates. As Gupta correctly points out, they won’t be able to tell two people with the same name and birthday apart. So every instance of the same name and birthdate will be counted as a case of fraud.

  39. rikyrah says:

    The Democrats Aren’t Funding Trump’s Border Wall
    by Martin Longman
    July 19, 2017 3:06 PM

    Since I just wrote a long piece on the disconnect between Republican perceptions of reality and actual reality, I am loath to write another one so soon. But, my word, can they Republicans get any more clueless?


    It is not going to be hard for Democrats to oppose Trump’s wall, and it doesn’t matter if it is a “bollard” wall or a solar energy plant that can power the entire southwest. There will be no votes for Trump’s stupid wall. Perhaps nowhere does President Trump more clearly demonstrate that he’s insane than when he talks about this subject. He wants windows on the wall so people will be able to see the drug dealers on the other side before they hoist 60 lb. sacks of dope over the top and onto their necks. In case you are in doubt about the lunacy of this talk, a typical bowling ball is 15 lbs. Could you throw four bowling balls all at once fifty feet into the air?

    He’s actually hassling the Secretary of Homeland Security for schematics? He doesn’t know that he’ll need a bunch of Democratic votes to get the funding for this and that no Democrat is willing to engage him on his fantasies?

    Supposedly, they will scare Democrats into relenting on this.

    Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) have been working with the White House to introduce a bill by the end of the summer that would cut the current annual level of 1 million green cards by half in 10 years, largely by limiting visas for extended families of legal U.S. residents.

    Cotton, who along with Perdue has met twice on immigration with Trump, said the legislation is popular in key states where Democratic senators are up for reelection in 2018.

    “Donald Trump recognizes that it’s possible to be both pro-immigrant and to believe that immigration levels are too high and skewed against educated, high-skilled, English-speaking immigrants,” Cotton said.

    The strategic thinking among administration members is that they can gain a political advantage on immigration once they begin talking about proposals publicly. The release of the Cotton-Perdue legislation, they hope, will mark the beginning of a public immigration pitch.

  40. rikyrah says:

    The Challenges of Running to Be the First Muslim Governor
    by Nancy LeTourneau
    July 19, 2017 1:54 PM

    One of the Trump supporters I follow on Facebook posted something that grabbed my attention (and not in the way he hoped):

    Be forewarned.
    > Be ready > for an “Obama like” being groomed by George Soros…
    > Etch this man’s face and name in your mind.
    > His name is Abdul El-Sayed.
    > He is 32 years old, born in the USA , and an extremely well educated Muslim Doctor in Detroit Michigan. (education funded by George Soros)
    > He is handsome, articulate, charismatic (more so than Obama), and smart.
    > He is sympathetic of the Muslim Brotherhood, and is running for Governor of Michigan.
    > Which is Step 1 in his preparation to run For President Of the United States.
    > He has the potential to be Obama #2, but far more openly Muslim
    > In 2020 he will be eligible to run for President!
    > Democrats’ mouths are watering in anticipation and raising money.
    > Elizabeth Pocahontas Warren is already campaigning for him.
    > Another Trojan horse????

    I suspect that he got a lot of that from this article about Abdul el-Sayed at World Net Daily. Since when does that publication devote an entire article to someone running in a Democratic primary for governor more than a year before the election? The answer is too easy…when they are Muslim. Here is their conclusion:

    “It’s Obama II,” Manasseri said. “Elizabeth Warren will be coming to campaign for him, the Democrats in other states will be raising money for him. The DNC number-two man [Keith Ellison] will be raising money for him. Of course this guy is going to be on the Sunday morning talk shows. He’ll be everywhere. A candidate for governor who is Muslim Brotherhood …if that doesn’t tell you there’s a Shariah swamp in Michigan I don’t know what does.”

    You might suggest that is hardly surprising coming from the Islamophobes at World Net Daily. But in an otherwise informative article published in Politico today about El-Sayed, take a look at the title: “Is Michigan Ready for a Governor Named Abdul?” The point they make is to ask the question of whether or not his Egyptian heritage and Muslim faith will be a problem for white working class people in Michigan.

    This is a perfect example of what I wrote recently about the fact that it is not Democrats who make wedge issues out of things like race/gender/religion. It is the Republicans and their right wing extremists friends who do that, especially in the Trump era. Abdul el-Sayed isn’t running as “the Muslim candidate.” As a matter of fact, given his medical degree from Columbia and his time spent as director of the health department in Detroit, here’s what he said inspired him to run for governor:

  41. rikyrah says:

    Former Government Ethics Director Shaub: Trump setting wrong tone
    Walter Shaub, former director of the Office of Government Ethics, talks with Rachel Maddow about the appropriateness of A.G. Jeff Sessions’ recusal from campaign-related investigations, and Donald Trump’s inappropriateness in addressing his myriad conflicts

  42. rikyrah says:

    Schiff: Trump one-on-one with Putin is ‘risky’
    Congressman Adam Schiff, top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, talks with Rachel Maddow about Donald Trump’s apparent accidental admission that he talked about sanctions at his second meeting with Vladimir Putin, and concerns about what he may have said.

  43. rikyrah says:

    Trump, feeling heat, attacks Justice Department independence
    Matthew Miller, former spokesman for the Department of Justice, talks with Rachel Maddow about Donald Trump’s distorted view that the Justice Department, including the FBI, should be in his loyal service.

  44. rikyrah says:

    I’ll say it again..he has no self-respect. He’s not going anywhere.

    Resignation watch: Trump lashes Sessions, Justice officials
    Rachel Maddow reports on a New York Times interview of Donald Trump in which Trump expresses his dissatisfaction with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and other Justice Department officials, raising the question of whether any of them will resign.

  45. rikyrah says:


    Keep calling:

    Andy Slavitt, who ran CMS under Obama, tweeted last night:

    NEW: The Senate strategy remains the Senate bill, not full repeal with the delay. They are prepared to add back $ to buy “centrist” votes.

  46. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s top voting commissioner questions 2016 popular vote
    07/19/17 04:47 PM—UPDATED 07/19/17 07:39 PM
    By Steve Benen

    American voters were given a choice last year between two major-party presidential candidates, and to the annoyance of the White House, Donald Trump came in second. In fact, Hillary Clinton not only earned roughly 3 million more votes than her Republican rival, she had the strongest performance of any American candidate ever who wasn’t inaugurated.

    This not only denied Trump a credible claim to a mandate for his regressive agenda; it also hurt his feelings. And with this in mind, the GOP president responded to the election results by repeatedly telling people that he secretly won the popular vote, pointing to evidence that exists only in his imagination.

    He is, however, not the only one thinking along these lines. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R), the voter-suppression pioneer who’s helping lead Trump’s “voter integrity” commission, spoke today with MSNBC’s Katy Tur, and it led to an interesting exchange:

    TUR: Do you believe Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 3 to 5 million votes because of voter fraud?

    KOBACH: We’ll probably never know the answer to that question, because even if you could prove that a certain number of votes were cast by ineligible voters, for example, you wouldn’t know how they voted.

    The host, seeking clarification, added, “So, again, you think that maybe Hillary Clinton did not win the popular vote.” The Kansas Republican responded, “We may never know the answer to that question.” Tur, incredulous, said what I was thinking. “Really?” she asked.

    But this led to an equally interesting exchange, looking at the absurd conspiracy theory from the opposite direction:

    TUR: So are the votes for Donald Trump that lead him to win the election in doubt as well?

    KOBACH: Absolutely.

    All of this is deeply ridiculous. We know, because the evidence tells us, that Trump lost the popular vote by millions of votes. We know, because the evidence tells us, that there was no systemic “voter fraud,” and that Kobach’s efforts to prove otherwise are a sham. Common sense suggests he should have no role in a “voting integrity” commission.

  47. rikyrah says:

    The CBO comes through again.

    CBO shines a brutal light on latest Republican health care plan
    07/20/17 08:40 AM—UPDATED 07/20/17 08:52 AM
    By Steve Benen

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) unveiled a health care plan a month ago, with the hopes of passing it before the 4th of July. Lacking Republican votes, it failed.

    So, McConnell tweaked his bill and tried again. This week, it too fell short. “Regretfully, it is now apparent that the effort to repeal and immediately replace the failure of Obamacare will not be successful,” the GOP leader said in a statement.

    McConnell then said he’d move forward with a “repeal and delay” plan in which Congress would eliminate the Affordable Care Act, and then take two years to try to think of something to replace it with. This proposal, dubbed the “Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act,” was scrutinized by the Congressional Budget Office, which released its report late yesterday.

    A Republican Senate bill to repeal Obamacare would cause 17 million fewer people to have insurance within one year, premiums to jump by 25 percent, and insurers to pull out of counties across the country, according to a new report by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. […]

    After 2020, the CBO estimates, half of the nation’s population would live in a county where there were no insurers at all in the individual market. By 2026, 32 million fewer people would have insurance compared to Obamacare and premiums would have doubled.

  48. rikyrah says:

    Attorney General White Citizens Council has no self-respect…so, he could dog him out everyday of the week, and it wouldn’t matter.

    Trump takes aim at a longtime ally, AG Jeff Sessions
    07/20/17 08:00 AM
    By Steve Benen


    President Trump said on Wednesday that he never would have appointed Attorney General Jeff Sessions had he known Mr. Sessions would recuse himself from overseeing the Russia investigation that has dogged his presidency, calling the decision “very unfair to the president.”

    In a remarkable public break with one of his earliest political supporters, Mr. Trump complained that Mr. Sessions’s decision ultimately led to the appointment of a special counsel that should not have happened. “Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else,” Mr. Trump said.

    Let’s back up for a minute. When Sessions took over as attorney general, the Justice Department was already pursuing a counter-espionage investigation into Russia’s election attack. The probe included scrutiny of the Trump campaign and its interactions with Russian nationals, which created an obvious problem for Sessions: he not only played a role in the Trump campaign, he also had previously undisclosed conversations with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

    Sessions’ recusal, in other words, was a no-brainer.

    But the president is nevertheless convinced the attorney general’s decision was “very unfair” and “extremely unfair” to him. Based on what the Times has published, Trump didn’t explain why he believes this, but figuring this out is a rather straightforward exercise.

    Not to put too fine a point on this, but Trump apparently saw his attorney general as an ally who would “help” the White House on matters like the investigation into the Russia scandal. The only reason it’d be “unfair” to the president for Sessions to recuse himself is if Trump expected Sessions to steer the investigation in a way Trump liked.

    And that’s no small thing. In effect, the president is arguing that the attorney general should’ve overseen the probe in order to protect Trump from any embarrassments or consequences. Even now, months later, the president is fuming, in part because the Russia scandal is intensifying, and in part because his ostensible ally in the Justice Department isn’t cooperating with a cover-up.

  49. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    “The jail where Sandra Bland died is now authorized to carry out immigration enforcement”

  50. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    Good Morning, Rikyrah and Everyone :)

  51. rikyrah says:

    Attorney General White Citizens Council has no self respect, so no resignation letter will be forthcoming.

  52. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😄😄 😄

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