Articles chosen with care. Comments welcomed. Linked articles in bold purple
◆ Healthcare bill:
- Another Republican Senator says no (that’s 5).
- The Democrats go all in on vitriolic criticism.
- Warren calls it “blood money,” etc.
- Even Joe Manchin, the most conservative Democrat, will vote against the bill.
The conventional wisdom is that the R’s cannot get it through the Senate and that the D’s will escape all blame from voters.
Comment: I don’t think the Democrats are home free on this.
The Republicans will get a lot of the blame, to be sure, if they can’t pass a bill. They should. They have both Houses and the Presidency.
But the Democrats’ entire strategy on everything in both Houses and in the streets is to resist and obstruct.
It remains to be seen if voters will endorse that. I don’t think it appeals beyond the base in NY, CA, and university towns.
Republicans will surely say, “It’s our bill versus Obamacare. The Democrats love Obamacare and won’t do anything but small changes. So now we’re all stuck with it.”
That stance is reinforced by former Pres. Obama coming out so forcefully against the Republican bill.
What happens when voters get the bad news from insurance companies in November about next year?
Ultimately, the electoral question comes down to this: Which do you hate more? Obamacare or the Republicans’ failure to repeal and replace it?
The [Saudi Interior] ministry did not name the group involved in the attack. The ultraconservative Sunni kingdom battled an al-Qaida insurgency for years and more recently has faced attacks from a local branch of the Islamic State group.
Neither group immediately claimed those arrested, though Islamic State sympathizers online have urged more attacks as an offensive in Iraq slowly squeezes the extremists out of Mosul and their de facto capital of Raqqa in Syria comes under daily bombing from a U.S.-led coalition. –Washington Post
Comment: Remember, bringing down Saudi Arabia was the major goal of Al Qaeda all along. So far, not much progress.
My guess is that the real political risk is related to Saudi efforts to liberalize the economy, which requires freer information and freer women.
◆ Loretta Lynch, Attorney General in Obama’s final years, is now being investigated by the Senate. Hacked emails from a Democratic campaign official said Lynch “would not to let the Clinton investigation go too far.” That doesn’t look good. Nor does Comey’s testimony that Lynch ordered him to falsely characterize the investigation in public. (USA Today story here)
Another email, now public,
indicated that Lynch had privately assured Clinton campaign staffer Amanda Renteria that the FBI’s investigation wouldn’t “go too far.” –USA Today
The Congressional letter asking Lynch to provide documents was bipartisan, and Lynch has promised to cooperate.
Comment: First, the Senate has to determine if these emails are real or fake. If they are real, Ms. Lynch may be be able to dance around them. For example, “I only meant I didn’t want it to go too far afield” or that she was simply guessing what the FBI would do. (Why would she be talking about such a secret matter to staffers for the person being investigated?) Or that the staffer misunderstood, etc.
The fact that Democrats signed the letter to Lynch indicates the Senate committee, led by Grassley and Feinstein, is operating in a bipartisanship fashion, although it could also indicate that Lynch has reassured Democrats she can defend her position.
Still, the documents now publicly available reek of political interference in a criminal investigation if they are real, not faked by the Russians. As this investigation moves forward, remember, the Democrats refused to allow the FBI to look into their computers after the Russian hack. They haven’t said why.
◆ When corruption stinks. Literally. The White Plains, NY, city council gave a $175k judgeship to someone who cannot work because she is too fat to climb the three steps to the bench (Daily Caller) Judge Eliz. Shollenberger is chair of the local Democratic Party and all council members are Democrats.
It actually gets worse. Judge Shollenberger comes to the court house with what we will delicately call “gastrointestinal issues,” which leave the place looking and smelling terrible.
Shollenberger further dismayed her colleagues by displaying “complete arrogance” following the embarrassing incidents.
“She would just say, ‘There is a mess over there. I think someone should clean it up,’” a court source told the NY Post. –NY Post, quoted in the Daily Caller
Comment: The over/under on how long it takes for Judge Shollenberger to play the victim here: 2 minutes. “I’m sick” “This is fat shaming.” Etc.
Meanwhile, the public has to pay for a non-working judge and a hard-working janitorial crew.