It’s day 25 of the #TrumpShutdown, and there’s no end in sight, with President Trump and Senate Majority Leader McConnell as recalcitrant as ever. According to the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, today marks the first time in U.S. history that “servicemembers in a U.S. Armed Force have not been paid during a lapse in appropriations.”
“THAT WOULD BE A CRIME.”
Make no mistake: Attorney General nominee William Barr is just as extreme as former AG Jeff Sessions. A noted opponent of the Mueller investigation with disturbing stances on criminal justice policies, Barr has a lot to answer for.
He gave several troubling answers before the Senate Judiciary Committee today:
- Barr refused to commit to recusing himself from the Mueller investigation, even at the recommendation of career ethics officials.
- Barr said he has “never personally researched the emoluments clause.”
- That should give you pause. The emoluments clause is a core issue of the Trump presidency. Barr knew the question was coming and made a point not to research it beforehand.
- Barr also refused to contradict his 1991 statement that Roe v. Wade should be overruled.
That said, even this unacceptable nominee gave Trump reason to worry:
- Trump has actively attempted to interfere in the Mueller investigation. Barr, in today’s hearing: “If a president attempts to intervene in a matter that he has a stake in—to protect himself—that should first be looked at as a breach of his constitutional duties.”
- Per Barr, it would be a crime for the president to offer someone a pardon in exchange for not testifying against him.
There is plenty of reason to believe that President Trump has done both of those things.
TOO RACIST FOR EVEN THE GOP.
King’s most recent heinous comments defending white nationalism have resulted in the House GOP stripping him of his committee assignments and GOP leadership suggesting he “find another line of work.” A measure will be introduced to censure King.
Condemnation of a white nationalist is a low bar. Republicans still continue their silence on another Republican who espouses white supremacist and white nationalist rhetoric, hesitates to disavow Ku Klux Klan leaders, and says there are ‘very fine people’ among violent neo-Nazis. He’s sitting in the Oval Office.
But this does, if anything, cast former Speaker Paul Ryan in an even more unflattering and cowardly light. After allowing King free reign for years, pretending as if nothing could be done about it, King had his committee assignments stripped within days of Ryan leaving Republican Leadership.