Mike Lee – or should I say Wednesday’s Brave Mike Lee – said so many bad things about the useless briefing that the Trump Administration provided to Congress. He “tore into” the Trump Administration. He said the briefing was ” un-American. It’s unconstitutional. And it’s wrong.” He was so mad that he inspired a “Why Mike Lee Might Vote to Remove Trump” analysis piece at Bloomberg.
I think we can all agree, in a bi-partisan and fair-minded way, that we want more Wednesday Mike Lee Republicans in the Senate, and it sure sounds like Wednesday Mike is not in love with Donald Trump.
But that was Wednesday. Thursday, he went on Fox News and revised and extended his remarks:
“Those assigned to come and brief us yesterday from the administration didn’t share this president’s view that has been very respectful toward his commander-in-chief power.”
“I applaud this president. I support this president. This president has been fantastic. He’s been unprecedentedly deferential to the American people, and restrained in his use of the commander in chief power, more than any other president in my lifetime.”
“The briefers yesterday didn’t exhibit the same level of respect and deference and restraint that president trump has shown, and I think that’s unfortunate.”
So, Thursday never looking back, and Friday, Mike’s in love.
Mike’s a great example of a Senator throwing down a few “I was reasonable back then” cards at the right time and place. This motherfucker is the god damned chairman of Trump’s re-elect campaign in Utah. (Warning, the lede of that story will make you want to vomit.) He’s as much of a fucking coward as the rest of them, and the first question at that news conference should have been “In light of your anger, are you going to resign your position as Trump’s campaign chair?”
We should be issuing a deck of cards to the DC Press that has the Trump affiliations of each Senator on it, so they can pull out their own card when a Senator tries to play an “I was reasonable” card, and ask them about their Trump affiliations.
Speaking of reasonable cards, is there anyone throwing down more of them than Rob Portman? He got so much press and adulation for his gay marriage stance, which he based on happening to have a gay son. (If he didn’t, of course he’d be a bigot like the rest of them.) Today in my hobby news feeds, my place of respite, that fucker pops up in a puff piece about his love for the outdoors. One of Trump’s first acts was the largest national monument reduction in history. A Trump committee wants to privatize national park campgrounds and (this one is really awful) revoke some of the benefits of the lifetime Senior Pass. At least Jennifer Rubin sees through his bullshit.
If we ever get rid of Trump, the backlash needs to include people like these two, otherwise they’ll teach a lesson to others like them.
Is anyone surprised?
There will be no consequences for them. The media will see to that.
They’ll all play Susan Collins game and the media gives them unearned credit for doing so.
I underestimated the cowardice of R senators. I’m searching for an analogy here to emphasize the point, but ‘the cowardice of R senators’ is paradigmatic, all by itself.
Well, mistermix, you’ve cured me of the brief “respect” I had for brave, brave Sir
But I have to take issue with something:
Portman is still a bigot, even if he maybe doesn’t hate on gays because of his son — and that’s a big if. Based on the various comments from Ohioans (Kay especially), the guy is slime, and seems to be as big a weasel as Collins.
I think your deck-of-cards suggestion is good, similar to the way I think the NY Jets getting a real head coach would be good: great in theory, highly unlikely to happen in practice.
These Rethug mofos are all so tiring. There’s no real “happy place” I can find to get away from their insanity. Anybody got any Owsley?
No one ever accused Rep. Matt Gaetz of being reasonable, but it’s been fascinating to watch him try to defend his vote with the Dems yesterday on the war powers resolution. I can’t think what motivated him to cast that vote; it’s not like he has principles or a conscience. It’s a mystery.
Also, wrt Jennifer Rubin— you can just see her crossing off, one by one, the names of politicians she once admired. Not a pretty sight, but necessary in the current timeline.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
I think you missed the shocking part, that reaction from Lee was genuine and the Trump admin had seriously pissed him off with their arrogance. I don’t think that was some calculated time to be the voice of reason, more Lee dropped his guard for moment. I bet Turtle and Graham spent the next couple of days whining at Lee to be a good Republican and praise Dear Leader.
Trump is so bad he gives the professionally spineless a spine.
Did he walk back his decision to support Kaine’s bill on war powers? What he says means nothing to me.
Utah is probably a lost cause, and neither Lee nor Portman are up in 2020. Susan Collins’ penchant for playing poopyhead has been on prominent display for a while, but here are the other senators who are Republican, up for election in 2020, and in states where mindless fealty to Trump might not be seen as a plus:
I believe that Gardner and Ernst actually ran away from the press at one point rather than answer difficult questions about impeachment. No doubt they don’t want to answer difficult questions about war powers either.
@rikyrah: I think the best way for the Democratic Party and its candidates to deal with Bloomberg is not to do or say anything.
Did Stalin get this kind of loyalty?
My big fear for 2021 (after Trump getting reelected, natch) is that, should the Democrat win the White House and should Dems pick up seats in the House and Senate, that there will be a repeat of 2006 and a desire to just let bygones be bygones. The Democrats, at least to my mind, have let the Republicans off the hook again, and again, and again, by not continuing to pursue abuses of power once the main perpetrator is out of the picture. It’s like they see each restoration of sanity as the new normal, instead of just one more pause in the GOP’s never-ending quest for single party control.
If I can parallel with the bullshit crap I’m dealing with in my personal life right now- as a lot of you probably read in one of my other comments last week, I’m dealing with a breast cancer recurrence. I looked at the lab report from the lymph node that was removed. The cancer is the same kind as before, EXCEPT, EXCEPT, that it’s now much faster growing than the original one, which sucks. And I feel that way about the GOP. Each time they get excised from power, they evolve to come back more aggressive and more damaging than before, and the Democrats seem to think that a policy of repeated surgery (elections), and healthy living (trying to pass legislation for the good of the nation) will keep them at bay, when what they need to do is suck it up and give the GOP a long stretch of chemotherapy treatment (investigation into corruption), knowing full well that some Democrats’ careers will get caught up and killed off in the process. too. Painful and horrible and maybe it still won’t cure what’s ailing this body politic, but good grief, at some point the GOP has to face actual consequences for bad actions and 2 or 4 years at a stretch out of power isn’t going to do shit.
(As for my personal bullshit, no word on what my follow-up treatment will be yet; I’m trying to take it as a good sign that the oncologist’s office seems content with my coming in almost a month after surgery, the earliest I could get an appointment. If they were worried about delay in getting me on medication I’m trusting they’d get me in sooner. Or maybe they’re just being the Democratic Party. I don’t know anything anymore.)
Yeah, my (ugh) Senator Portman is cut from a very similar bolt of cloth as Collins. He makes moderate noises and occasionally, carefully and strategically, votes sensibly.
For instance, there were a series of three votes in the run-up to McCain killing the undoing of the ACA. Portman was a No in the middle vote. Didn’t make a difference in the final outcome but I imagine it helped some Ohioans hold on to their belief that reasonable Republications exist.
Hes very proud that one of his big causes in human trafficking. You won’t hear him mention the trafficking that’s happening at our southern border though. What happened to all those girls, not on Portman’s radar.
It’s a long haul until he’s up for re-Election. Maybe, just maybe, the Ohio Dems will have their act together by then, and mount a real campaign for a challenger. I keep hoping…
I will add that his offices rarely answer the phone and it’s not unusual for the voice mailbox to be full. He either can’t keep an intern or they are the laziest group without any work ethic.
Also, thanks for The Cure ear worm. Seriously. I love that song.
@SFAW: Why couldn’t it be a Balloon Juice project? Lots of smart, knowledgable people here. We have some talented designers, here, also. Some of whom could probably use some work.
I bet we could put together a deck of cards that we could send to every media outlet. Even the little ones, local press, that are more likely to ask real questions. We could sell them on-line.
Am I crazy?
My god, it’s approaching those levels. It is really scary.
David Brooks’s headline this morning is “Trump Has Made Us All Stupid.”
Uh, wow, we’ve now found something I can’t blame Trump for, Mr. Brooks. You’ve always been stupid.
@Nicole: I agree completely, and that’s an excellent analogy. I’m just sorry it’s personal experience that makes it so vivid for you. That sucks (huge understatement).
Nicole, I missed the thread where you announced your recurrence, all I can say is Rats! Shit! Think hard about getting a second opinion, and maybe pester your onc for an earlier appointment.
I like my onc but I had to make a fuss before she agreed to send a slice of my tumor for the BCI test.* Which showed, contrary to her prediction, that I had a high chance of a recurrence if I did not continue on the estrogen blockers past five years.
Which strengthen my belief that you gotta ride your doctors. They are all overworked and by necessity, tend to be a little blasé. It helps to demand their attention (nicely of course).
Anyway, we’re all pulling for you, and please keep us updated.
* For those of you who haven’t been lucky enough to have had a malignant rumor, the hospital encases the excised tumor in wax and stores it for years and years, just in case. The Breast Cancer Index test uses a sliver of the tumor to evaluate the cancer’s genetics and predict the cancer’s future course.
OH, of course, it’s not that the President is incompetent, he just has incompetent followers. I see, Senator.
Who could have known?
Bad question to ask of fellow Juicers. [To be clear: whether it’s you or anyone else asking the question, not singling you out.]
Joking aside: interesting project proposal. My “skill” set is not amenable to that kind of thing, but I bet there are plenty here who would be.
Of course, I’d also like to see a card set for Uday, Qusay, and their “father,” similar to what was circulating post-2001.
Gin & Tonic, Duke of Tanqueray
@zhena gogolia: Well, Trump hasn’t had any dissenters killed. Yet.
Wall Street Journal, via TPM:
It’s not news to us that the assassination was primarily ordered to improve Trump’s political fortunes; apparently that’s what’s driving foreign and domestic policy across the board now.
I wonder if he complete turn was because of kompromat.
I mean he could just be a Republican but in this day & age you never know.
The (il)logical extension is that we start seeing large (i.e., billboard-sized) photos of the Traitor-in-Chief everywhere, mixed with similarly-size photos of Putin.
New YorkNovy Moskva Times will both-sides it.
So sorry to hear of the recurrence. Keeping my fingers crossed that any/all treatments are stunningly successful.
Does anyone, ANYONE, think that Bush and Cheney would have been convicted by the Supreme Court? Because it would go to the Supreme Court immediately. Their crimes were potentially illegal political decisions, like torture. There was no way in hell Roberts or Kennedy would have voted that they were allowed to be prosecuted for that, and every likelihood there’d be a 5-4 decision declaring torture and a bunch of other stuff hunky dory. As things stood, we got to legally walk back most of it. I would love to have seen Bush and Cheney in jail, but I see no way it could have been achieved.
EDIT – Trump, on the other hand, is guilty of personal crimes that are not part of being president, and none of our major candidates seem in a hurry to forgive him for those.
OT, but possibly some useful and interesting news for many regarding the ability to discharge student loans in bankruptcy. Source.
Basically, a few very high profile decisions soon after Congress made it more difficult to discharge student loans have erected a seemingly insurmountable hurdle for most people with high student loan debts, unless they are physically or mentally incapacitated. A few bankruptcy judges seem to be taking a somewhat less punitive approach. It will always be difficult, but it might be more worthwhile to try than it has been previously understood.
@Betty Cracker: Yep, the only surprise there is that Trump continues to not understand that he incriminates himself with nearly every off the cuff statement.
I am a bit bleary-eyed this morning, and I first read the beginning of your quote as: Mr. Trump, after the STROKE, only to realize a moment later that you had said “strike”.
Surprise, Surprise: The DOJ’s Hillary Clinton Investigation Has Been a Bust
Predicted it. Predicted Thursday Mike. Best wager ever. Now, all I have to do is sit back and wait for all my winnings to start rolling in. Still waiting. Gonna make some coffee. Still waiting. Maybe a breakfast sammich Waiting…………………
Oh crap. Forgot to get this to my bookie. Next time.
@Gin & Tonic, Duke of Tanqueray:
He’d love to.
I wish you’d have given me a trigger warning. I had to run to
collect my winningsfind my nitro pills, such was the shock to my ticker.
I saw that last night. I’m sure it will be the top story on all the MSM and big headlines in the NYT for weeks.
It’s well past time to just say to these people, “You think ‘the American people’ are just Fox News viewers, right? No one else counts, do they?”
Because they really couldn’t make it more obvious.
Mike in DC
@Nicole: Harris(and to a lesser extent, Warren) are/were the only nominees of whom I thought, “maybe they’ll hold the previous administration accountable”. Unless they piss Biden off to an extreme degree, we all know in advance that he won’t lift a finger to hold 45 or his admin accountable, because he’ll want to try to work with Republicans, likely wasting months of legislative time trying to get (shitty) deals. Bernie will be focused on his agenda, and a lot of his supporters come across as indifferent or even hostile to Russiagate et al. And I don’t get the vibe that Mayor Pete is all about holding Trump’s feet to the fire.
I think that a Warren/Harris ticket is the only thing that might make people like Lindsey Graham nervous.
When has the absence of evidence ever been a reason not to accuse Hillary of wrongdoing?
I for one call on Barr to launch an investigation into Huber’s investigation.
Did you guys really expect any different?
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@Frankensteinbeck: accountability for the Iraq War was never about the courts for me. We needed something like the Warren Commission to have public hearings and testimony and report. I can’t jump in the wayback machine and speculate who in 2007 had the kind of standing necessary to make such a thing credible, but I think at that moment it was possible.
By the time the economy started going to hell, it was too late to make people care.
BTW I am loving all the wonderful slogans and the music that the Indian protests against the CAA-NRC are inspiring
One older woman in Varanasi (NM’s constituency)
Pehle ladhe the goronse
Ab ladenge choron se
It doesn’t quite rhyme in English
First we fought against White people
And now we fight against thieves.
The same woman also called the Home Minister Amit Shah
Genda (rhino) which rhymes with Goonda (Goon)
Another woman called him aate ka thaila (sack of flour)
@zhena gogolia: The NYT will highlight it on the front page, just like they did for Clinton Cash.
He said at his rally last night that all Democrats are terrible, horrible people.
At least he didn’t say “deplorable.” That would be cause for big headlines.
@schrodingers_cat: Hey, SC, how did your heating adventure turn out? Thought of you last night when the bottom fell out of the thermometer.
The Moar You Know
@schrodingers_cat: Dems need to stop jumping at stories that imply that any Republican in these United States is going to behave in any manner that would uphold the Constitution, if Trump won’t like the results.
Only when Dems stop buying into, or even clicking on, those stories will the media stop making them. There’s a huge market out there for bullshit; the idea that a Republican might “go rouge” is an attractive one to a Dem electorate looking for an easy way out of the Trump reign, but it’s not going to happen and we need to stop acting as though it might.
Hell, I’m still running into friends, mostly of the more centrist/moderate sort, who insist that enough GOP senators will break with Trump and vote for removal. I don’t even discuss it with them any longer, I just laugh right in their faces. Not gonna happen.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@zhena gogolia: it’s that weird reverse-snobbery in the media. All the Ivy/NU/UM/Stanford grads who absolutely look down on the howler monkeys, but can’t admit that publicly, or even to themselves, so they (the diploma’d, socially credentialed media) are easily stampeded into R talking points to prove they’re not snobs.
And of course, as Charlie Pierce puts it, it’s not about race, because nothing is ever about race, so let’s go back to Flo’s Diner in Rustberg one more time to talk to Dub and Smitty about why they love trump
@zhena gogolia: “vicious, horrible people”
@Gin & Tonic, Duke of Tanqueray:
If Shitgibbon is reelected, I really do think we’ll have organized violence against liberals. They’re a fucking death cult.
This is the kind of thing that only increases my conviction that Republicans who start to step out of line are shown proof that their campaigns were funded by Russian oligarch money and that they will go to jail if they oppose Trump.
The last time I said this, someone challenged me and said that this would only work if the Republicans who were threatened that way were total cowards who would roll over as soon as they saw that proof, and what if one of them had some actual courage?
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I rest my case. None of them have a lick of courage and not a single one is willing to risk his or her own well-being for the good of the country.
Chants of Azadi at JNU with Deepika Padukone, one of India’s highest paid actors standing in the background and lending her silent support to the JNU students. At a rally on JNU campus where BJP affiliated student organization went on 5 hour rampage breaking bones and destroying property, while the police locked the gates and didn’t intervene.
ETA: BJP government and their cronies have demonized the students of JNU for the last 6 years calling them everything from traitors to anti-nationals. For daring to speak their mind.
Azaadi == independence. Its telling that Indians are reviving the slogans from the Freedom struggle against British collaborators who are using the time tested Divide and Rule policy.
@Mnemosyne: Listening to Susan Collins jabber on about how mean Democrats are to make impeachment into a campaign issue certainly supports that hypothesis.
I’m sure they’re going to keep accusing her, but we are not (yet) at the point where they feel comfortable manufacturing evidence that would stand up in court, so all they have is innuendo and accusations.
@The Moar You Know: Agreed. I will believe it when it happens.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
Communist who were out of the Soviet Union in countries that would have eagerly welcomed their defection returned to the Soviet Union to be tortured to death during the Great Terror.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
for the most part, that was loyalty to a system, not to an individual.
even late in the Purges, when things were known or suspected, many Communists “returned” to the Soviet Union to meet their fates, believing that Communism, after the Guilded Age, WWI, Roaring 20’s, the Great Depression, was the only way of “breaking the wheel”.
Forseeing their own deaths at the hands of a System they had helped build, and wanted to “perfect”, even those who saw Stalin as an “abberation”, a “hijacking”, many still returned. They did not become Menshiviks, Trotsyites or other splinter factions, convert to Capitalist Democracy, Anarchism, or Socialism.
They were “true believers” who believed that their trials, ( if they got one), their suffering, their deaths, would help perfect an imperfect system.
In contrast, nothing remains of what once passed for the Republican “belief” system except Cleeks Law, Greed, Cowardice, White Supremacy, Self Interest and Duex ex Machina’s Collary.
Sending you prayers in your continued fight :(
@Ohio Mom: Oh lord, the calls to the oncologist- the surgery office called 4 times with no luck, and by the time they got through I’d already gotten through myself and moved up the appointment (my regular 6 month check up was scheduled for early February). At this point I’m only 5 days from the appointment, and my follow up with the surgeon is the same day so in some ways it’ll be knocking out 2 birds with one stone.
They did do lots of genetic tests the first time, so that at least I feel they covered. They did the OncoGene on my original one and I came back with a very, very low risk of recurrence (like 6%). And in fact, everything pointed to low risk- no lymph node involvement then, a very slow growing cancer, blah blah blah. Unfortunately, somebody’s got to be in the 6% and it turned out to be me.
While I’m really upset about the Ki-67 coming back so much higher, I’m trying to remind myself that otherwise it hasn’t evolved (still Her2-, still very high estrogen and progesterone responsive, and while they took out 10 lymph nodes it was only in the original one I felt in November). Also, I didn’t go on hormone therapy the first time so I’m hopeful that going on it now (along with Warfarin, probably, as I have blood inclined to clot excessively) will starve the motherfuckers that may be remaining somewhere in me. I’ll do chemo and cut out my ovaries or whatever else the doctor recommends me to do, obviously, but some of the sites I’ve read said with the ER+PR+ Her2- ones they sometimes don’t move automatically to chemo unless the hormone therapy isn’t working anymore because the risk-reward benefit isn’t high enough with this kind of cancer cell.
@rikyrah, @betty cracker, et al; thanks for the continued good wishes. I’m not telling many people in my in real person life because they get upset and cry and then I’m spending emotional energy trying to make THEM feel better about my problem, but it’s nice to be able to vent about it a bit here, along with how mad I am at the state of the country.
@Nicole: Thanks for letting us know. We are all pulling for you.
J R in WV
As one of the few guys I know who has had mammograms and biopsies, I am feeling with and for you!
Take care, best wishes for good luck, and please keep us posted!