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Hilarious breakdown of Trump’s chaotic four weeks (video)

Fri, 2017-08-18 17:39

CNN did a great breakdown of Donald Trump’s chaotic last four weeks in office.

Brooke Baldwin talked us through the list of disasters, that was so long she had to stop to get some water!

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Trump says we should bury Muslims with pigs to stop terror

Thu, 2017-08-17 15:21

In an apparent attempt to deflect attention from the fact that he is a Nazi sympathizer, Donald Trump today tweeted an urban myth that the way to effectively fight terror is to bury Muslims with pigs. The idea being that this is such sacrilege that it will scare Muslim terrorists from ever attacking us again.

Putting aside for a moment how utterly despicable it is that Trump would suggest we defile the dead, let alone someone’s religion, but the story, attributed to General Pershing, is itself “fake news.” It never happened. But Trump is sharing it online as truth.

Here’s Trump’s tweet:

As added flavor, note Trump’s qualifier that General Pershing is “of the United States,” as if anyone other than Donald Trump would not know that General Pershing was American.

I can’t think of a better terrorist recruiting tool, putting more American lives at risk, than Trump’s racist tweet about defiling Muslim dead.

Folks, Trump is crazy. And he’s dangerous. And he’s going to get us all killed. The Republican party needs to step in and remove this clear and present danger from office. Otherwise, the GOP will forever be the party that coddled a Nazis sympathizer while he destroyed our nation.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Former CIA Director: Trump is “dangerous”

Thu, 2017-08-17 12:32

Former CIA Director John Brennan said the other night that Donald Trump’s embrace of white supremacists and Nazis is “ugly and dangerous,” and that “Mr. Trump is putting our national security and our collective futures at grave risk.”

Brennan made his comments in a note to CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer, who revealed this week that he lost all four grandparents in the Holocaust.

Brennan’s broadside is significant, as it’s one more indication that we crossed a rubicon this week. It wasn’t just Trump’s worst himbo eruption to date, it was also moment many in establishment Washington realized that Trump is unfit to be president.

Now, why does that matter? Because the powers that be make Washington work. It’s a large part of the reason that Trump is so god awful at politics — thank God — he has no experience in it. And you need experience if you want to make Washington work for you.

On the flip side, when Washington turns against you, it’s all the more difficult to get things done. And this isn’t some super secret “deep state,” it’s simply a very large bureaucracy with a lot of people who know how to work the system. And when you embrace Nazis, you give them quite an incentive for throwing the proverbial slipper in the gears to grind the machinery to a halt (the origin of the word “sabotage”).

But something far more significant happened. It wasn’t simply that the media and the Republican party realized that Trump was unfit to be president. People started realizing that Trump’s presidency endangers our survival as a nation. Enter Brennan.

Brennan is career CIA. He’s a serious man. When he says that Trump poses a danger to the country, the national security establishment listens. That means that whatever problems Trump already has with incriminating national security leaks will only get worse, as Brennan has clearly sent the message that this president is unfit.

Then there’s FBI special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Trump and Russia. Nothing Brennan said influences the legal part of the investigation, but it does affect the cultural climate in which Mueller’s investigation takes place. Brennan is helping to create a climate in which official Washington, and the public at large, realize that Trump needs to go. That potentially makes Mueller less concerned about the societal implications of his final findings. Which may empower Mueller even more.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Let’s elect America’s first openly-gay governor

Wed, 2017-08-16 14:26

Let’s make LGBT history. Please contribute $25 to the campaign of a man who hopes to become America’s first openly-gay governor. I had no idea until now that we’ve never had an openly-gay man elected governor of any state. Rich Madaleno plans to change that by becoming the Governor of Maryland next year.

After the horrific weekend in Charlottesville, we all need to re-devote ourselves to creating (and preserving) a world in which we are all free and equal and respected. And that includes ensuring our elected officials are both diverse and good. Democrat Rich Madaleno fits the bill.

Rich Madaleno.

Please contribute to Rich’s campaign via this link, and you can read more about Rich in the Metro Weekly interview below, following his personal note to you. If we want to make things better, we need to elect better politicians. Rich is one.

Thanks so much, JOHN


[[First_Name]] –A few weeks ago, I sat down for a long interview with John Riley, a reporter with Metro Weekly, Washington D.C.’s largest and longest-running LGBT publication.  It was just a few days before I formally announced my campaign for Governor of Maryland.It was a great opportunity to talk about the race, my personal experience, my family, and my vision for the state.Below are some excerpts from the interview. The full interview can be found HERE. I hope you can take some time and read the entire piece.

As I begin this journey to become the next Governor of Maryland, I hope that you’ll join me and make a contribution to my campaign HERE.

Together we can make history.

Best,

Rich Madaleno

Political Purpose: Rich Madaleno could be America’s first out gay man elected governor

“…in 2002, Madaleno ran for and won a seat in the Maryland House of Delegates, where he served for four years, before running for the Maryland State Senate in 2006, where he found that being gay didn’t matter.

“I had a slightly different experience than some others in a similar situation in other offices around the country, because I had spent time working in Annapolis,” he says. “People knew me. So I already had a reputation going into the legislature as a thoughtful, serious thinker who knew a tremendous amount about the fiscal policy of the state. I wasn’t going in the door as ‘the gay one from Montgomery County.’”

Madaleno’s private life, meanwhile, followed somewhat of an ideal course. He met his husband, Mark, then a pediatric nurse, in 1999 after they were set up by friends. Their first date, at a coffee shop on a Friday night, turned into a four-hour conversation. Two days later, unbeknownst to each other, both men participated in AIDS Walk in Washington, D.C.

“I came up the escalator at the Smithsonian Metro station to check in and I walked right into him,” says Madaleno. “We wound up spending the whole walk talking and sharing the experience.”

*   *   *

Two years later, they married. In 2003, when the couple adopted a daughter. Four years later, they adopted a boy.

“I’ll say we’ve been married for coming up on 16 years and people will say, ‘Oh, where did you get married? Did you get married in Canada?’ And I say, ‘No, we got married in our church in Bethesda,’” says Madaleno. “Did we have a marriage license at the time? No. But that didn’t make it any less of a marriage and a commitment. And that was part of the theme that I used through the whole debate over relationship recognition, and then on to marriage equality: we are married. We are married in the eyes of our friends, of our family, of our church. The government just has to catch up to our reality.”

Madaleno is committed to helping the government in that effort, and potentially from a higher office than ever before. After years of being mentioned as a possible candidate, he’s jumped into the fray for the Democratic nomination to take on Republican governor Larry Hogan in November 2018.

*   *   *

MW: What made you decide to run for office?

MADALENO: The ability to do good for a vast number of people. I do believe that we all have a responsibility to work towards improving the world around us. I think part of the human experience is making sure that you leave your community — whether that is the few members of your family, your larger community, the country, the world — a better place than when you came into it. I’ve always viewed public service and elected office as the best avenue for me to do that, to work to make life better for our community and our state and the people who will follow us.

MW: Why have you now opted to run for governor?

MADALENO: For a variety of reasons. One, I think our state is not moving in the right direction. The way I look at it is, change is inevitable but growth is optional. Maryland simply is not growing in any sort of meaningful way that’s positioning ourselves to be a prosperous community for the 21st century, and without bold leadership from the governor, the state simply isn’t going to make progress.

When I looked around at some of the issues that I cared about, and I looked around for candidates that I thought would be able to carry the mantle and make progress on the things that I care about, I couldn’t find them, and just came to the conclusion of, “All right, if these are the issues that you think are important and these are the issues that you think the people of Maryland should be having a conversation [about], then instead of trying to find someone else to do that, maybe you should just step up and do it.”

When I looked around at the other candidates in the Democratic field, no one has the depth of experience at state issues that I have. Maybe the public’s view of experience amongst political candidates is starting to shift after our Maryland experience with Larry Hogan and our national experience with Donald Trump. Maybe this fascination for the outsider to come in and change everything when they don’t have experience and they don’t have relationships actually isn’t the way to make progress.

The way to make progress is to elect somebody, just like you would elevate somebody in other fields, who has knowledge and experience in the field, has relationships with people. One that can actually start from day one in making progress.

*   *   *

MW: If you win, you’ll become the first openly gay man to be elected governor of a state, and likely asked to prioritize the issues of the LGBTQ community. How do you balance the needs of the LGBTQ community with the needs of the broader electorate?

MADALENO: I think it would be in much the same manner that I’ve accomplished it over the last 15 years as a legislator. It is recognizing that I, just like any other elected official from a minority group, say a Latino, an African-American, a woman, whatever you want to say across the board where it’s a non-straight white male. You have that additional responsibility to fight for those issues. You bring a level of understanding and depth to the table that other people don’t necessarily have.

*   *   *

I hope you enjoyed the excerpts above, or the entire interview. I ask for your support so that we can take our message to the people of Maryland. Click HERE to contribute safely and securely.

P.S. Click here to join our campaign  and receive important updates atMadalenoForMaryland.com

P.P.S. If you would prefer to contribute by mail, our office address is below. BY AUTHORITY: Marylanders for Rich Madaleno. Linda Eisenstadt, Treasurer.

Marylanders for Madaleno
3720 Farragut Avenue
Kensington MD 20895 United States

 

Trump tweets, deletes, image of CNN reporter being killed

Tue, 2017-08-15 12:43

Donald Trump this morning tweeted, then deleted, a cartoon of a CNN reporter being murdered this morning by a runaway train. This was in response to the outrage over Trump refusing to criticize the terrorist murder of a young woman by an Alt Right white supremacist in Charlottesville, Virginia on Saturday.

Trump was upset at CNN’s Jim Acosta for asking him yesterday why he didn’t speak out earlier about the Nazis at Charlottesville.

What was in especially poor taste, the woman was killed by a man who intentionally ran his car over her and other protesters, just as the CNN reporter is being run over by a train in the Trump tweet.

Trump subsequently deleted the tweet. And while many thought the tweet was deleted because someone in the White House realized how embarrassing the graphic was, I started wondering if the problem might have been the Twitter account itself that Trump was promoting.

It’s a weird account. Purportedly run by a blond woman, the account reeks, to me at least, of being fake. For starters, it’s difficult to imagine any one human could tweet this much in just one single day. There must be hundreds of tweets from the last twenty-four hours alone. Also strange, nearly every tweet from the last few days is directed at Donald Trump. Hundreds of tweets directed at Trump. The “woman” is clearly trying to get Trump to retweet her. And she’s done the same thing with other conservative celebs.

Then there’s the substance of her tweets. She tweets images/memes, a lot. And she tweets the same ones over and over again. It’s odd. Then we get to the details of the content. It’s the kind of thing Trump surely agrees with, but it’s not the kind of thing that even Trump would want to associated himself with right now. For starters, she thinks Charlottesville was a “false flag” operation — meaning, it was really liberals pretending to be white supremacists:

And another:

She’s also promoted Pizzagate, the fake conspiracy theory that Hillary Clinton ran a child sex ring in the basement of a Washington, DC pizzeria. That theory motivated a man with a shotgun to shoot up a pizza parlor in DC, with customers present.

And the rest of her content isn’t any better. As ThinkProgress noted, she’s promoted anti-Semitism from from KKK leader David Duke:

Then there are her racial positions:


So perhaps there’s an even bigger problem with what Trump is retweeting and who he’s promoting. Last night, Trump retweeted an Alt Right leader. This morning, he retweeted an account that smells of being a bot (Russian perhaps?) and promotes conspiracy theories about Charlottesville.

And we’ve only been at this for six months.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. Follow me on Twitter & Facebook:


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Trump retweets Alt Right leader diminishing Charlottesville outrage

Tue, 2017-08-15 00:06

Donald Trump this evening retweeted an “Alt Right” (hipster racist movement) leader trying to diminish the outrage over the terrorist attack that took place during a white supremacist protest in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Trump’s elevation of Alt Right leader and conspiracy theory publicist Jack Posobiec took place only a few hours after Trump criticized the Alt Right, and other white supremacists and neo-Nazis, who led the hate rally in Charlottesville that ultimately led to one counter-protester’s death at the hands of an Alt Right terrorist.

Trump’s retweet criticizes the notion that “the media” was outraged over the white supremacist terrorist attack but not over 39 shootings that took place in Chicago, unrelated to terrorism. The intent seems to be to diminish concern about the terrorist murder in Charlottesville, and suggest that any outrage is fake and partisan. In fact, the outrage over the protest, murder, and Trump’s refusal to condemn it has been universal, and included numerous top conservative members of Congress who criticized Trump’s silence.

Trump posted this only hours after he was forced to criticize the neo-Nazis terrorist and other white supremacist marchers. For days, Trump refused, and instead criticized “both sides,” suggesting a false equivalence between neo-Nazi terrorists and regular Americans protesting against hate and intolerance.

Just as troubling, Posobiec is a known conspiracy theorist, and one of the masterminds behind the promotion of the infamous Pizzagate conspiracy that claimed Hillary Clinton was running a child sex ring in the basement of a Washington, DC pizza parlor. (She wasn’t.) This led one man to shoot the pizza parlor up with a rifle, threatening dinner guests.


So, not only is Donald Trump now diminishing the outrage over the terrorist attack in Charlottesville, but he is elevating an Alt Right leader when the march was organized by the Alt Right, and Trump’s own statement earlier today criticized the Alt Right.

It is now clear that Trump had no intention of sincerely acknowledging the severity of the terrorist attack, or of sincerely criticizing its white supremacist and neo-Nazi organizers.

Donald Trump, in his petulance, has now reignited this controversy and yet again fed the flames of division.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. Follow me on Twitter & Facebook:


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Trump calls CNN “fake news” after being asked why didn’t criticize Nazis earlier

Mon, 2017-08-14 15:44

Donald Trump just flipped out on CNN’s Jim Acosta, who asked Trump at an event why he didn’t criticize the Charlottesville Nazis earlier.

Trump claimed he did condemn them. He didn’t mention that it took 48 hours of blistering criticism for Trump to finally do it.

When Acosta followed up with another question, Trump called him “fake news.”

Look at that face:

Acosta’s response? “Mr. President, haven’t you spread a lot of fake news yourself, sir?”

Trump turned away and left.

Here’s a clip:

Trump calls CNN “fake news” after being asked why didn’t criticize Nazis earlier – https://t.co/zWmZjiP8Nq pic.twitter.com/QyaDl2zekt

— John Aravosis (@aravosis) August 14, 2017


With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Life comes at Trump fast

Mon, 2017-08-14 12:31

Last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, Donald Trump gleefully launched a Twitter tirade against Republican Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his Senate caucus. Then, 24 hours later, he needed McConnell and the Senate GOP, and they knifed him.

Trump was upset that McConnell was unable to get a health care reform repeal passed through the Senate, so he unloaded on McConnell. Repeatedly. And rather viciously.

Trump figured he doesn’t need Republicans in Congress. He’s his own man. He got to where he was in life on his own (he hasn’t, but he thinks he has). So why does he need Mitch McConnell, or any allies for that matter. Trump is a one-man show. He uses you when he needs you; otherwise you’re disposable.

Then a funny thing happened. Not one day after Trump’s latest Twitter-rage against McConnell, Donald Trump needed Mitch McConnell and his fellow Republican Senators, and they all stabbed him in the back when Trump needed them most.

On Saturday, a neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia became violent when a white supremacist’s car plowed into counter-demonstrators, killing one woman. Everyone immediately condemned the racist terrorist attack, except Donald Trump.

Trump dragged his feet, and even let his wife speak out, but not the President himself. Finally Trump spoke, but rather than condemn the Nazi terrorism, Trump condemned both sides — the Nazis, and the anti-Nazi protesters.

The response from Republican leaders was swift and brutal. Non-usual suspects like Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Gardner, Mike Huckabee, and Orrin Hatch all criticized the white supremacists. And many Republicans, including conservative Republicans, blasted Trump for refusing to criticize the neo-Nazis by name.

Only 24 hours after Donald Trump launched his latest salvo against Republicans in Congress, Trump needed those Republicans in Congress. And they weren’t there.

Donald Trump has no idea how Washington works, and he doesn’t seem to have a terribly good grasp on life either. If you spend your time constantly attacking and undermining your friends, then you won’t have those friends when you most need them.

Live by the tweet, die by the tweet.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. Follow me on Twitter & Facebook:


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Trump White House just equated anti-Nazi protesters in Charlottesville with the Nazis

Sun, 2017-08-13 12:59

Trump White House Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert this morning compared anti-Nazi protesters in Charlottesville with the Nazis they were protesting. This occurred on CNN’s “State of the Union” with Jake Tapper.

Tapper was incredulous.

Bossert’s comments only furthered concern about Donald Trump having compared both sides during his statement about the violence yesterday. Trump’s false equivalence between the Nazis and the anti-Nazi protesters was immediately criticized by many in his own party.

Tapper noted in particular that the Nazis actually killed someone yesterday. The anti-Nazi protesters did not.

Here’s a clip from Tapper’s show:

Trump White House just equated anti-Nazi protesters in Charlottesville with the Nazis. https://t.co/jmlBXcR3yV pic.twitter.com/Qukpd40idi

— John Aravosis (@aravosis) August 13, 2017

As several journalists noted, the only people Donald Trump is uncomfortable criticizing by name are Vladimir Putin and Nazis. You’ll recall that during the presidential campaign Trump was reticent about criticizing former KKK leader David Duke. In the case of Putin, many speculate as to whether Trump is being blackmailed. But what about Trump’s reticence to condemn Nazis?

You’ll also recall that Trump had a series of slights against the Jewish community, including attacking Hillary using a Star of David, and refusing to include Jews in the White House’s statement remembering the Holocaust.

Overall, Trump seems overly-focused on not offending Nazis, white supremacists, and racists. Trump seems to think they’re his base. And increasingly, they seem to be.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. Follow me on Twitter & Facebook:


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Hillary was right

Fri, 2017-08-11 17:50

Hillary was right.

She warned us, almost one year ago to the day, that a man you can goad with a tweet shouldn’t be given access to the nuclear codes.

And here we are, six months into Trump’s presidency, potentially on the brink of a nuclear war because Trump just can’t STFU.

Donald Trump has truly met his match with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. There is probably no leader on the planet as crazy, as egotistical, as full of himself and his own words as Trump and Kim. So when they get into a rhetorical pissing match, like they have this past week, it’s more than sad or comical. It’s dangerous. We’re dealing with men who live and die by their ego and their public image. If they perceive they’re being slighted, they go ballistic. Literally.

[Have you subscribed to my YouTube channel? Please do here.]

Nuclear blast via Shutterstock

Donald Trump is a serial liar, his word means nothing. So it doesn’t really mean anything that Trump has drawn a red line at North Korea “threatening” to attack Guam. It means nothing. No promise, to act or to refrain from acting, means a thing because Donald Trump is a proven liar. And that makes this situation all the more dangerous. In international relations, consistency breeds confidence. Even if you’re dealing with an an enemy, if his actions are consistent and rational, you have fair warning before he, say, nukes you. With Trump, you don’t. This leaves North Korea in the unenviable, and dangerous, situation where they have to figure out whether the madman of Bedminster will nuke them first. And there’s no way to tell, because Trump is an unpredictable liar. And that can lead to North Korea, or anyone threatened by Trump, acting first. If you can’t tell if your opponent is going to nuke you, you might just nuke him first.

And that’s where we come full circle. Not only is this situation dangerous because Trump is inept and operating on pure ego. It’s dangerous because Trump’s dishonor provides an incentive for our adversaries to anticipate the worst, and try to pre-empt it by attacking first. And short of removing the man from office, I’m not sure what we can do about it. Happy Friday!

A FEW OTHER STORIES I’VE PUBLISHED THIS WEEK

Is Melania Trump really fluent in five languages? I’m not so sure. (Video blog)

Newsweek’s new cover photo just destroys Donald Trump. You have to see it. I thought it wasn’t real. It is.

I published a video blog using video clips to ask the question whether Donald Trump is physically well.

And finally, a new study shows that Trump will be responsible for double-digit increases in health insurance premiums next year.

[Democrat Jacky Rosen is running against Obamacare repeal supporter Dean Heller in the US Senate race in Nevada next year. Please donate to Jacky. This is likely the Democrats’ best chance at picking up a seat.]

GET READY FOR OUR NEW PODCAST

I haven’t blogged much this week, because I’m preparing for the launch of my new podcast with my progressive partner in crime, Cliff Schecter. We’re still getting some of the bugs out, and hope to have an official launch next week. The podcast will contain free and subscription-only episodes (about 50-50 of each), so you can still enjoy it if you can’t afford to help out, but if you can afford it, it will be much appreciated.

Have a great weekend, and don’t forget to duck and cover.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support my work with a $25 donation. We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Trump responsible for double-digit health insurance premium increases, per new study

Thu, 2017-08-10 11:55

Donald Trump is responsible for health insurance premiums increasing by double-digit numbers next year, according to a new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Kaiser found that two of Donald Trump’s threats — not to enforce the individual mandate (which forces everyone to buy insurance) and threatening to cut off subsidies that insurers use to low copays and deductibles.

The uncertainty over both of those issues could spike premiums for people who buy “silver” plans on the Affordable Care Act exchange or it could spike premiums for everybody.

Here’s more from Kaiser:

Insurers assuming the individual mandate will not be enforced have factored in to their rate increases an additional 1.2% to 20%. Those assuming cost-sharing subsidy payments will not continue and factoring this into their initial rate requests have applied an additional rate increase ranging from 2% to 23%. Because cost-sharing reductions are only available in silver plans, insurers may seek to raise premiums just in those plans if the payments end. We estimate that silver premiums would have to increase by 19% on average to compensate for the loss of CSR payments, with the amount varying substantially by state.

The overall idea is that if insurers don’t know what’s coming, they prepare for the worst. And that means they raise prices more than they would normally have done, had Trump not created this uncertainty.

Here are some of the state-by-state premium increases due solely to Trump’s actions:

Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to let Obamacare “implode,” and he appears to now be helping it do just that. The problem for Republicans is that they now own Obamacare — and it’s spawn, TrumpCare, whether they pass legislation or not. Republicans are now responsible for the health insurance premium increases that Americans will see next year, and the year’s following. TrumpCare is now the de facto, if not de jure, law of the land. And the GOP will be held responsible in 2018 and 2020.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel here. Follow me on Twitter & Facebook:


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Is Donald Trump okay?

Sun, 2017-08-06 13:51

Is Donald Trump okay?

For someone who made such a big deal about Hillary Clinton’s health during the election, Trump wheezes an awful lot when he speaks.

One recent example: Trump’s speech honoring first responders who saved the lives of members of Congress under fire during a softball game. Throughout the talk, Trump sounds like he’s having trouble breathing.

Below, I have two clips from, the speech — a shorter version, and a longer one (the longer one is to show you just HOW much Trump wheezed in one speech alone.

Short version:

Long version:

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

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Newsweek cover destroys Trump

Fri, 2017-08-04 10:01

Newsweek’s cover this week probably won’t be hanging in Mar-a-Lago any time soon. And I checked, it’s real.

Newsweek depicts Trump as a “lazy boy” sitting in his Lazy Boy lounger, watching TV, chowing down on Cheetos, hamburgers, Diet Coke and pizza.

The captioning notes that during Trump’s six months in office, he’s spent 40 days golfing and gotten zero pieces of legislation passed.

But the most devastating part was the caption below the main photo: “Donal Trump is bored and tired. Imagine how bad he’d feel is he did any work.”

There’s also an associated article by Alexander Nazaryan:

Were he to reach the White House, Trump said, he wouldn’t make the same mistake for which he’d been lambasting Obama since 2011. “I’m going to be working for you,” he told supporters in August 2016. “I’m not going to have time to go play golf.”

Now that he’s president, Trump frequently departs the White House and spends the weekend golfing at either his South Florida resort, Mar-a-Lago, or his country club in the New Jersey suburb of Bedminster. The promise he’d made a year before was discarded so quickly, you have to wonder if he even remembers making it. Politico did the legwork: George W. Bush didn’t golf for the first five months of his presidency, while Obama stayed away from his beloved links for four months following his inauguration. Trump held out for all of two weeks. He has visited a golf club 40 times since taking office in January, according to the self-explanatory site Trump Golf Count, which estimates the forays have cost American taxpayers $55 million. Another Trump tracker, this one by The New York Times, finds that his visits to Trump-branded properties total 56 days, nearly a third of his time in office….

[H]e is playing golf and tweeting anti-CNN wrestling memes. When the weekend concludes, Trump returns to the D.C. swamp with all the enthusiasm of an office lackey slouching toward his cubicle on Monday morning.

You have to read the entire piece, it’s masterful. I’ll share just one more snippet:

Two days before the presidential inauguration, Trump tweeted a picture of himself seated at a desk, pen hovering above a stack of papers. On his face was the faraway look of a great man lost in deep thought: Pericles pondering the Athenian dead, Churchill surveying a blitzkrieged London. The accompanying text revealed that the president-elect was composing his inaugural address at the Mar-a-Lago resort, which he’d already rebranded “the Winter White House.”

The tweet was supposed to show leadership at work, but it instead revealed the lengths to which Trump will go to foster the image of diligent leadership. It didn’t take a team of CIA digital forensicists to figure out that the Spanish tile wall behind Trump in the photograph matched the one in the reception area at Mar-a-Lago. A photograph soon surfaced of a young woman at the very same desk, looking like she was ready to confirm your dinner reservation. Further scrutiny—that is, clicking a magnifying glass icon to zoom in—revealed that the papers on the desk were seemingly blank, while the writing instrument in Trump’s hand appeared to be a Sharpie, not especially useful for writing out a lengthy speech. Wanting to look like a head of state, Trump instead ended up looking like a concierge-in-training.

Okay, just one more — it’s a long piece:

The most impressive quality of Trump’s myth is not just that it strays from reality but how thoroughly, even aggressively, it contravenes easily confirmable fact. When he was king, he was the King of Debt, and he may still owe as much as $1.8 billion to creditors. His casinos closed. His airline went bust. But even as he accrued failures, lawsuits and debts, Trump managed to turn “Trump” into a synonym for success. The letters were made of plastic, but they were dipped in gold.

This is a point I’ve been raising for a while. Trump sure doesn’t act like a successful business. He acts like a paranoid nut who is totally overwhelmed by his job. He’s a terrible manager — how many people will he fire before he admits that maybe the problem is coming from inside the house — doesn’t seem very bright, and, as Nazaryan notes, lacks even the most basic interest in his new, and rather important, job.

How did this guy make any money? He didn’t. He’s the king of bankruptcies.

Okay, showing one more:

Unable to take credit for his own achievements, Trump has laid claim to those of his predecessor. Obama took office during the Great Recession, when the unemployment rate was 7.8 percent and rising. Eight years later, as he prepared to leave the White House, it was 4.7 percent, a nine-year low. And yet Trump cites “absolutely tremendous economic progress,” as if he were the one who pulled the nation out of the foreclosure crisis. He brags about having quelled the flow of immigrants entering the United States illegally, but it was under Obama that illegal immigration fell to a 44-year nadir. Trump has, however, managed to keep out tourists. America has become so great, international travelers aren’t coming like they used to.

It’s a brutal piece. Read it.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Is Melania Trump really fluent in five languages?

Thu, 2017-08-03 16:51

Melania Trump claims to be fluent in English, French, Italian, German and Slovenian. But is she really?

I speak five languages (Spanish, French, Italian, Greek and English), looked into the issue, and what I found raises questions about just how well Melania Trump truly speaks French and Italian.

Why does this matter? Because just this week, Donald Trump announced a new immigration policy whereby potential immigrants with skills, and fluency in English, will get favored treatment. So the issue of whether Melania Trump, America’s most famous immigrant, even spoke English when she got here, and whether she’s telling the truth about her overall language abilities, matters. Because her husband made it matter.

And finally, this goes to the larger issue of this administration being one continuous ongoing lie. If they lie about the little stuff, imagine what they’re doing with issues that really matter.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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New Yorker releases audio of crazy profanity-laden Scaramucci phone call

Thu, 2017-08-03 11:26

The New Yorker has just published excerpts of the audio of former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci’s insane phone call with reporter Ryan Lizza.

Oddly, the New Yorker censored the most offensive parts of the audio. It’s not entirely clear why, as they’re the most newsworthy part of the story. I’ve had to make decisions like this in the past, when I uncovered proof that Bush White House reporter Jeff Gannon (aka James Guckert) was actually a gay male prostitute. I had to decide whether to publish salacious images from Gannon’s “business” Web site. In the end, I did, because it became clear to me that by censoring my own story, I would be changing the story itself, making it less salacious, less offensive, less shocking, and thus helping quell the very controversy the story was reporting on. And as a journalist, and an activist, it’s not my job to help quell GOP scandals.

It’s also not clear why the New Yorker didn’t simply publish the entire conversation (at least the on-the-record parts). The audio below contains a few clips, but not the majority of the conversation. Why not?

Here’s what the New Yorker did release.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

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Trump White House mansplains immigration to the Statue of Liberty

Wed, 2017-08-02 18:07

Trump White House mansplained immigration to the Statue of Liberty today.

Faced with criticism of Trump’s new immigration policy, which favors immigrants who speak English and already have marketable skills, Trump senior adviser Stephen Miller claimed that the famous words engraved on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty — “Give me your tired, your poor” — have nothing do with the actual real message behind the statue.

As I explain in today’s video blog below, it’s Donald Trump’s message of racism and division that has nothing to do with the Statute of Liberty, liberty itself, or the American dream.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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The Daily Show pays homage to Anthony Scaramucci

Tue, 2017-08-01 20:11

Trevor Noah at the Daily Show — who I don’t watch nearly enough, he really is great — paid homage to Anthony Scaramucci the other night.

As always, definitely worth a watch:

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

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Conservative GOP Senator Flake blasts Trump in op ed

Mon, 2017-07-31 19:36

Conservative Republican Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona just penned an op-ed in Politico, blasting both Donald Trump, and the GOP for not standing up to him. (The op-ed is actually a selection from Flake’s new book, “Conscience of a Conservative.”)

Flake even criticized the GOP for making the Obama presidency all about defeating Obama, rather than helping the country.

Here’s how the piece starts:

I will let the liberals answer for their own sins in this regard. (There are many.) But we conservatives mocked Barack Obama’s failure to deliver on his pledge to change the tone in Washington even as we worked to assist with that failure. It was we conservatives who, upon Obama’s election, stated that our No. 1 priority was not advancing a conservative policy agenda but making Obama a one-term president—the corollary to this binary thinking being that his failure would be our success and the fortunes of the citizenry would presumably be sorted out in the meantime. It was we conservatives who were largely silent when the most egregious and sustained attacks on Obama’s legitimacy were leveled by marginal figures who would later be embraced and legitimized by far too many of us. It was we conservatives who rightly and robustly asserted our constitutional prerogatives as a co-equal branch of government when a Democrat was in the White House but who, despite solemn vows to do the same in the event of a Trump presidency, have maintained an unnerving silence as instability has ensued. To carry on in the spring of 2017 as if what was happening was anything approaching normalcy required a determined suspension of critical faculties. And tremendous powers of denial.

And it gets better from there.

GOP Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona.

Flake is clearly talking about Trump and birtherism in particular, when he writes: “It was we conservatives who were largely silent when the most egregious and sustained attacks on Obama’s legitimacy were leveled by marginal figures who would later be embraced and legitimized by far too many of us.”

Flake goes on. He quotes conservative writers calling the conservative mind “diseased,” and clearly means the Trump presidency. He says the Trump presidency is “erratic” and “in chaos.” And that Congress needs to step and assert itself as part of the “checks and balances.”

Some of Flake’s greatest concern is about Trump’s affinity for authoritarian dictators, and his disinterest in Russia’s attempt to influence our election.

Meanwhile, the strange specter of an American president’s seeming affection for strongmen and authoritarians created such a cognitive dissonance among my generation of conservatives—who had come of age under existential threat from the Soviet Union—that it was almost impossible to believe. Even as our own government was documenting a con­certed attack against our democratic processes by an enemy foreign power, our own White House was rejecting the authority of its own intelligence agencies, disclaiming their findings as a Democratic ruse and a hoax. Conduct that would have had conservatives up in arms had it been exhibited by our political opponents now had us dumbstruck.

In the next paragraph, ostensibly writing about Putin, but one wonders if Flake wasn’t also intentionally referencing Trump, he writes: “The lesson here is that nothing is gone forever, especially when it comes to the devouring ambition of despotic men.”

It’s a masterpiece, sure to send Trump into a Twitter rage.

Now, why does this matter? Because “Nixon goes to China” moments are critically important, and helpful, in politics. It’s one things for liberals to criticize Trump, and the GOP’s coddling of him, it’s another entirely for a sitting conservative Republican Senator (who isn’t John McCain or Lindsey Graham, who are more “expected’ to speak out).

Now, according to FiveThirtyEight, Flake has voted with Trump over 95% of the time. So there’s fair game to question just how committed Flake is to righting the ship of state. Having said that, the man did put his name to a blistering op ed, which is an incredibly gutsy, in-your-face thing to do. And it’s just not something one normally does to a president of your own party. So in that regard, what Flake did is noteworthy, and it has earned our thanks.

Flake’s piece also suggests, in my mind at least, that Flake is not alone. He’s writing this because other Republican members of Congress have talked to him, and agreed with him, and Trump. Flake simply isn’t as afraid of speaking up. Or, just as importantly, Flake is more afraid of just how a danger Trump poses to our democracy.

After defending the filibuster, Flake concludes:

We have taken our “institutions conducive to freedom,” as Goldwater put it, for granted as we have engaged in one of the more reckless periods of politics in our history. In 2017, we seem to have lost our appreciation for just how hard won and vulnerable those institutions are.

Flake is saying that Trump threatens our freedom, and the institutions that help to preserve it. That’s an amazing (and accurate) charge for anyone to make publicly, let alone a conservative sitting Republican senator.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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GOP Sen. Graham: “Any effort to go after Mueller could be beginning of end of Trump presidency”

Thu, 2017-07-27 12:51

GOP Senator Lindsey Graham threatened Donald Trump today with “the end of the Trump presidency” should Trump try to fire special counsel Mueller, who is investigating the extent of the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia.

Graham first noted that there will be no confirmation hearings for a new attorney general in 2017. Trump has made clear on Twitter of late that he wants sitting attorney general Jeff Sessions to resign. Sessions has reportedly refused. Among the reasons Trump wants Sessions gone: Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation, and thus can’t help Trump kill it; Sessions hasn’t been vigorous in investigating leaks (per Trump); and Sessions hasn’t yet launched an investigation of Hillary Clinton.

“There will be no confirmation hearing for a new attorney general in 2017. If Jeff Sessions is fired, there will be holy hell to pay. Any effort to go after Mueller could be the beginning of the end of the Trump presidency.”

Graham then said that if Trump tries to fire Mueller, it may be the beginning of the end of his presidency. That likely means Graham is threatening to impeach him and remove him from office. That’s a large threat.

There’s more. It’s pretty great:

Now, Lindsey Graham is only one Senator, but in this Senate every vote counts, and Trump barely has enough votes to get his agenda through, as we’re seeing on health care reform. Trump can’t afford even one Republican Senator saying he’s had enough.

This throws a real wrench in Trump’s plans to get rid of Sessions. Having said that, Republicans like Graham talk a good talk, but they rarely act. Graham is happy to investigate Benghazi till the cows come home, but let’s see if he ever truly and finally takes on Donald Trump.

Again, the comments are great, and will give Trump pause. But until we see some real action, Graham and the rest will still be tarred with Trump’s excesses.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our writing, video blogs, and upcoming podcasts with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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Only 6 days on the job, Scaramucci jumps the shark — phones CNN for half hour tirade

Thu, 2017-07-27 10:42

Only 6 days on the job, new White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci has already jumped the shark, and then some.

Scaramucci phoned into CNN this morning to complain, or something. It went on for half an hour, and was simply bizarre.

Scaramucci started by telling host Chris Cuomo that he’d better be nice, or Trump won’t let him back on the show.

Scaramucci then denied that he accused, by tweet, White House chief of staff Reince Priebus of “leaking” his financial disclosure forms to Politico.

Then, during the same call, Scaramucci accused Priebus of being the leaker. (Politico subsequently cast doubt on the forms having been leaked at all.) Scaramucci claimed that since reporters thought his tweet accused Priebus of being the leaker, that proved that Priebus was the leaker, because the reporter thought so.

Then Scaramucci compared his relationship with Priebus to Cain and Abel, then added, maybe the relationship isn’t reparable.

Journalist Yashar Ali posted a few clips. The entire call is below.

Scaramucci casts doubt on the US intelligence community’s determination that Russia tried to interfere in the election:

32. WATCH: Here’s the part where @Scaramucci joined Trump in doubting intel community product on Russian interference. pic.twitter.com/0HQqu9dCCe

— Yashar Ali (@yashar) July 27, 2017

Scaramucci claims that Trump may sign, or maybe even veto, the new congressional sanctions bill on Russia. Why? Because, Scaramucci says, maybe Trump thinks the Congress isn’t being tough enough on Russia. Yeah, that’ll be the day.

30. Here’s the part where @Scaramucci says Trump may veto sanctions bill + be tougher on the Russians than Congress https://t.co/JoSBt2uADX

— Yashar Ali (@yashar) July 27, 2017

Here’s the entire video. It’s half an hour long, but the best parts are in the first 20 minutes or so. It’s worth a listen.

With the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever.

Please support our work with a $25 donation. (If you prefer PayPal, use this link.) We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

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