Towards an issues-based 2020 election (40)

===2020 Big Picture===
JFK’s September 14, 1960 speech “upon accepting the Liberal Party nomination”

… Mr. Nixon and Mr. Dirksen and Mr. Mundt and Mr. Goldwater don’t like my liberal policies, I’m glad to say, any more than they do yours. They are fighting a rear guard action against the 20th century, and they fear that our time is coming and theirs is going. I do not mean to say that the fight is wholly between the Democratic and the Republican Parties. Those of you who are here tonight are proof of the fact that some of the best friends that the Democrats have are not in the Democratic Party. [Applause.] I think in November that some of them may be in the Republican Party, but I hold out no hope at all for the vast and impressive number of Republicans who suddenly, just before election time – those who are running for office – suddenly begin to sound like true Lincolns.

Eight years ago on this occasion, Adlai Stevenson called this quadrennial outburst of affection “that pause in the real Republican occupation known as the ‘Liberal Hour.'” And he added, “It should never be confused,” and he was right, “with any period when Congress is in session.” [Laughter and applause.]

What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label, “Liberal”? If by “Liberal” they mean, as they want people to believe, someone who is soft in his policies abroad, who is against local government, and who is unconcerned with the taxpayer’s dollar, then the record of this party and its members demonstrate that we are not that kind of “Liberal.” But, if by a “Liberal,” they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people – their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties – someone who believes that we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a “Liberal,” then I’m proud to say that I’m a “Liberal.” [Applause.]

Note: Modern day examples of the “Liberal Hour” include Republicans claiming that they support Social Security and Medicare like Trump did last week in Flordia. And when presidential candidates claim they support universal health coverage but don’t plan to rein in Big Insurance, Big Pharma etc they’re either grossly misinformed or playing the “Liberal Hour” card.


GOP’s latest Big Lie (see referenced Jim Jordan (R-OH04)) comment…
This is an absolute lie. It was made explicitly clear that they were all allowed to ask questions.
So, @RepMarkMeadows, because I actually told this to you in the hearing and *it’s in the transcript* I’m sure you’ll have no problem confirming this. *And, they asked questions*!

Note: Republicans lost control of the House in 1957 and didn’t regain control until the middle of Clinton’s first term (1995). I remember two things about pre-1995 Republicans…

1) Clinton negotiated with Republicans on health care reform (just like Obama). Republicans walked-out of negotiations late in that first term and audaciously accused Clinton of being a do-nothing president. A TV reporter caught two Republicans as they walked out the door and asked them… aren’t you afraid that you’ll be punished by voters? Without hesitation one answered, no.

2) Republicans also complained that they were being abused by Democrats. Don’t let them fool you now like they did then.

Note2: During Trump’s first term Republicans did ignore Democrats when they controlled the House, Senate and White House . Were any amendments of their amendments accepted? I don’t think so.

And now… McConnell (R-KY) is blocking House bills from coming to the floor for debate much less a vote. Based on polling… many of those bills have broad public support.

Note3: Another deceptive twist… Reportedly Rubio (R-FL) called for an investigation (as opposed to the inquiry). What’s the difference?

Compare / Contrast…
1984: The President and the Press

Video: Candidates on the Hyde Amendment

2020 Democratic candidates reveal third quarter fundraising totals


The DNC’s Debate Gambit Prevents Donor Accountability

===2020 Issues===
‘We are living in the beginning of a mass extinction … but we can still fix this.’ – @GretaThunberg’s powerful new video explains how we can beat the climate crisis (video)

This is a critical battle coming to a head this month!
>…European Investment Bank’s proposal to ban fossil fuel projects. …

.@ActOnClimate100 has released its first Progress Report. A range of breakthrough corporate commitments are now in place, but a stronger corporate response is needed to tackle the #ClimateCrisis. Learn more:

See infographic…
Current climate policies & emission pledges lead to an *increase* in global GHG emissions.
The world is nowhere near on track to be anywhere remotely consistent with 1.5C or 2C in the next 10 years…

How The Four (Canadian) Federal Parties’ Climate Plans Stack Up
A climate scientist and an economist grade the major parties’ environmental platforms

Also Canada…
‘Job intensive:’ Study says clean energy fast track to employment growth

Road building generates more car journeys, creating a vicious and harmful cycle. We’d spend the money on tackling the #climateemergency by reducing CO2 emissions with free bus travel as part of a Green New Deal and public transport revolution.

Note: Increased ridership likely means increased availability.

Auckland fuel sales both fall by 7 per cent since tax introduced

@TheEconomist is right: climate change touches everything and everyone — and, unfairly, the poor and marginalized have the most to lose.
If you want to understand what can be done, I highly recommend you read this issue.

D.C. Circuit Offers Bad News, Good News on Net Neutrality:
FCC Repeal Upheld, But States Can Fill the Gap

April: House Democrats Pass Bill to Restore Net Neutrality

Fortenberry, Bacon and Smith opposed the bill…

The House just passed a bill to bring back net neutrality.
McConnell says it’s “dead on arrival” in the Senate.

How to Fight (the GOP’s) Assault on Net Neutrality

…Craig Aaron on Net Neutrality Setback

Context: Final Public Charge policy blocks aspiring Americans from becoming lawful permanent residents
The health and wellbeing of families will be greatly impacted, including U.S. citizen children

The Trump Administration Issues Dozens of Corrections to Its Error-Riddled Immigration Rule
Just weeks before a sweeping immigration policy takes effect, the administration is correcting
substantive errors, including ones uncovered by ProPublica that would have had big impacts
on military families.

Keep in mind – there was no deadline for publishing this rule. The administration could
have taken as long as it wanted to dot every I/cross every T. But I and others have
reported on how one particular admin official has wanted it out ASAP – from 2018:


The student debt crisis is especially harmful for African American students who are more likely to take out loans, owe more after graduating, and default more often than any other group.
Student debt relief will help close the racial wealth gap.

See chart…
Without government programs like #SocialSecurity or #SNAP, millions more would be living in poverty:

Why Aren’t More Women Working? They’re Caring for Parents

See chart…
Thrilled to present the new version of my paper ‘Minimum wages and racial inequality’
with @EDerenoncourt Key finding: 20% of the decline in
the racial earnings gap during Civil Rights Era stemmed from one single reform of the
minimum wage


See chart…
Last year, for the first time on record, the 400 wealthiest Americans
paid a lower total tax rate than any other income group.

2018 CBPP: Corporate Tax Cut Benefits Wealthiest, Loses Needed Revenue,
and Encourages Tax Avoidance

Feb CBPP: Fundamentally Flawed 2017 Tax Law
Largely Leaves Low- and Moderate-Income Americans Behind

Baker: The economics and politics of financial transactions taxes and wealth taxes (patreon link)

What can states do now to prepare for the next recession? #earncon2019
1. Fund UI trust fund.
2. Increase weeks of UI eligibility.
-Michele Evermore @NelpNews

1. Put in place ways for affected groups to give feedback on policies.
For example, about programs to protect homeowners.
2. Realistic (large) investment in public housing now, based on what the need really is.
-@mo87mo87 @ACREcampaigns

1. Boost state rainy day funds.
2. Make investments in low-income communities and communities of color.
3. Expand UI system.
-@Cort_Sand @CenterOnBudget

Another thread

The Market Does Not Bind Us
This post is part of a debate on the Loan Shark Prevention Act – – a bill that would create a federal usury cap. Anne Fleming’s argument against the bill is here.

What We Learn When We Learn Economics

.@allinwithchris parses efficiency vs fairness in econ theory, quoting @DeanBaker13:
“They find ways to justify redistributing income upward and proclaim it to be efficient.
The reality is it is not fair and generally not efficient either.” #EconTwitter

Would the U.S. benefit from more structural changes to healthcare delivery? Of course! Read this @NiskanenCenter  paper from @dolanecon on how universal catastrophic coverage would be the structural best bipartisan fix for the US healthcare system.

But as @lindsey_brink has said many times before, there’s a great deal of fat to be
trimmed in the healthcare system. Non-MD scope of practice expansion & drug prices
are the two biggest-ticket items. …

California’s surprise billing law is protecting patients – and angering doctors. …

See chart…
Health costs have been rising for both employees and employers. Many employers have responded by raising deductibles. Another way to reduce costs & improve quality could be through provider networks, but most employers aren’t pursuing these options: (see rest of thread)

Healthcare Reformer Wendell Potter: The For-Profit ‘System Is Unraveling’
A business group comes out swinging on behalf of Medicare for All.


See map…
Private health insurance as a whole is in the business of fracturing risk pools and cherry-
picking only the healthiest risks to insure, market by tiny market. Only one national health
risk pool and one national health plan can make health insurance work as the public
desires #M4A
> County by County Analysis of Current Projected Participation in Health Insurance Exchanges

High-deductible health insurance was supposed to make American patients into smart shoppers. Instead, they got stuck with medical bills they can’t afford. How the “consumer” revolution failed:

Health Care Costs Are Eating Us Alive, A New Survey Shows

Employer-based coverage is unaffordable for low-wage workers

See chart…
Over a quarter of covered workers have a deductible of $2,000 or more for single coverage.

Even after any employer contribution to an HRA or HSA, 1/5 of covered workers
are required to meet a $2,000 deductible before the plan covers most services.

Private Equity Chases Ambulances
Investment firms have bought up emergency medical service companies,
squeezing soaring profits from vulnerable patients

Private Equity’s business model coming under much-needed scrutiny.

New @KFF analysis examines how barriers to maintaining coverage in some states may be one factor contributing to recent Medicaid and CHIP enrollment declines:

Dr. Oz went on Fox News to discuss when @BernieSanders can resume campaigning (“in about a week… pretty aggressively”) and shocked the hosts by mentioning that “half the doctors in America want #MedicareForAll.”

How Employers Make It Impossible For Working Women To Breastfeed


Five Years Later, Do Black Lives Matter?
Five years since its inception, a look at what the Black Lives Matter movement accomplished and the important work it left unfinished.

See referenced picture…
Show me the receipts of other candidates unapologetically supporting #LGBTQ equity and inclusion during the AIDS epidemic.
I’ll wait.

===2020 Watch List===
Don’t feed the purported pro-Bernie/anti-Liz Warren trolls, nor the purported pro-Liz/anti-Bernie Sanders trolls.

In two hours of leaked audio, Mark Zuckerberg rallies Facebook employees against critics, competitors, and the US government.

Facebook Is Making Millions by Promoting Hate Groups’ Content
Despite a company policy banning hate speech, the social media giant
has taken in nearly $1.6 million from hate groups since mid-2018.

Applies to US. See infographic
Apparently the CPC recently launched a networking app for uniting and connecting conservative supporters. But did you know… Scheer’s conservatives hired  a US based company that develops apps *exclusively* for pro-Republican and right wing groups such as the NRA. #cdnpoli (thread)

===2020 Watch List-Bias===
Previously mentioned. Different report
Corporate Journalists Push Tax Attack on Medicare for All

This take I’m seeing that the Sanders team “hid” his health status is classless dishonest trash.


Video montage: What pundits say vs reality


And since the media scales are tipped toward corporate power…
Bernie Sanders Gets Stuff Done | 5 Amazing Victories


===2020 Presidential Candidates===
Tulsi Gabbard… Jan 11th
Op-Ed: Ro Khanna Rejects Hindutva, Launches New Debate for South Asian Americans
Kamala Harris… Jan 21st
See referenced Harris comment… uses the “S” word like so many on the far right…
Walter Reuther grew up in a proud socialist household, visited Eugene Victor Debs in jail, organized rallies for Norman Thomas AND played a critical role in forming the @UAW (video)

See referenced Harris advisor’s comment…
We have a series of crises in this country akin to the 1930s: skyrocketing inequality, a climate crisis, and an authoritarian right that seeks to suppress our multiracial democracy at every turn.
We had “broad systemic overhauls” then and we need them again today.
Elizabeth Warren… Feb 9th
Empowering American Workers and Raising Wages

The Sanders campaign tackles one critical labor issue that Warren leaves untouched:
at-will employment.

It’s always a good day to be reminded that I got where I am because a great education was available for $50 a semester at the University of Houston (go Cougars!). We need to cancel student debt and make college free for everyone who wants it.

Note: Warren’s plan doesn’t cancel all debt. Ask her about this.


Elizabeth Warren Has a Plan to Finish What FDR Started
And it could give Democrats a fighting chance in farm country and small-town America.
Bernie Sanders… Feb 19th
Americans are sick and tired of corporate CEOs making hundreds of times what their workers make.
Walmart: 1,076 to 1
The Home Depot: 486 to 1
Nike: 379 to 1
We say to corporate America: If you don’t end your greed and corruption, we will end it for you.


CEO-to-worker pay ratio in:
1965    20:1
1989    58:1
2018  278:1
Corporate greed is eviscerating the working class.

In 2018, 10% of workers – 3.7 million people – at 49 of the U.S.’s biggest public
companies made below poverty wages for a family of four.
Their CEOs’ pay averaged $12.3 million.
There’s no possible reason this would be okay

We’ve Waited Too Long for Corporations to Fix the CEO Pay Problem on Their Own
A decade after bonus-chasing executives like Angelo Mozilo crashed the economy,
we need tax incentives to push companies to narrow the gaps between CEO
and worker pay.

.@BernieSanders just got Mark Zuckerberg to agree that there should be no billionaires –
from his hospital bed. Is there anything this guy can’t do? #SuperSanders
This guy is singlehandedly moving the whole country. – See

Note: But he also said this (earlier in the week)

Don’t fall for disingenuous opposition to wealth taxes
Most “concerns” are really about protecting the status quo

Baker: Important Note on Taxing CEO Pay: CEOs Rip Off Their Companies


Reining in CEO compensation and curbing the rise of inequality


Will a wealth tax be crippled by avoidance schemes?
What both critics and supporters are getting wrong

Meet the opponents of our wealth tax:
– Steve “foreclosure king” Mnuchin
– Gregory “outsourcing is good” Mankiw
– Larry “repealing Glass-Steagall is great” Summers
– Jamie “a recession would be good for my bank” Dimon …

The greed of Mnuchin, Mankiw, Summers and Dimon destroyed the lives of millions,
while enriching the top 1%. It’s time to do the exact opposite of what they support.


Sen. Bernie Sanders leads in New Hampshire on making the business case for Medicare for All

As you read the news about @BernieSanders’ routine stent procedure, remember that stents cost 6 times more in America because insurance & pharma companies have bought Congress & blocked Bernie’s legislation to create a single-payer Medicare for All system.

Thanks for all the well wishes. I’m feeling good. I’m fortunate to have good health care
and great doctors and nurses helping me to recover. None of us know when a medical
emergency might affect us. And no one should fear going bankrupt if it occurs.
Medicare for All!

Ethan Weiss, a cardiologist at the University of California, San Francisco, said the stent
procedure Bernie Sanders underwent typically is “not anything I would get too excited
about,” calling it “mostly a nuisance.”

See text graphic…
Here is a good message from @janeosanders that says @BernieSanders is
“ready to get back out there and is looking forward to the October debate.”


This whole campaign was Bernie with a *blocked artery*??
Can you imagine the force he’s gonna be now with it’s unblocked?! *Go Bernie Go*!

“We’re not going to have quality care in nursing homes unless workers are treated with dignity and respect.” Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks to nursing home workers in Brentwood, NH. (video)

Defeating Trump is not enough.
We need leadership that will fight for working families and the shrinking middle class, not just the 1%.
That is exactly what I have done my whole life and what I am prepared to do as president. (video)

Sanders responds to Trump’s trolling
Beto O’Rourke… March 14th
See referenced comment…
Noteworthy that Beto makes this ideological argument about gun policy, but doesn’t apply it to health care or economic policy.


Note: There are reasonable ways to reduce the number of automatic weapons. But forced gun buybacks sound like a formula for new Wacos
Pete Buttigieg… April 14th
See referenced Buttigieg’s Warren comment…
I get the lane positioning here, but this sure seems like an odd line of argument against the one candidate in the field who proposed and then created an entire federal agency

TDS: Elizabeth Warren
Joe Biden… April 25th
See referenced Biden comment…
Pretty sure it’s a number. Otherwise, you’re suggesting that poor people don’t have the same values as the middle class, and that the rich have the best values of all.


Note: Biden’s health plan doesn’t rein in Big Insurance / Big Pharma etc so it isn’t sustainable. That  means he doesn’t support quality, affordable health care. Prove me wrong, Joe.

A newly unearthed letter from 2016 shows that Republican senators pushed for reforms to Ukraine’s prosecutor general’s office and judiciary, echoing calls then-Vice President Joe Biden made at the time.

The ex-U.S. special envoy for Ukraine told House investigators that he warned Rudy Giuliani that Giuliani was receiving untrustworthy information from Ukrainian political figures about Biden and his son, two people familiar with his testimony tell WaPo.

Ukraine’s former prosecutor says he repeatedly rebuffed Rudolph Giuliani’s demands to investigate Joe Biden and Son because of no evidence of wrongdoing by Biden

Note: Given the reported corruption levels and change of leadership after the coup, I take prosecutor’s statements with a grain of salt. A few days later…

Lutsenko’s record shows Trump and his allies embraced a Ukrainian prosecutor with no
formal legal training and a long history of wielding the law as a weapon in his personal
political battles, disregarding concerns of diplomats who said he wasn’t credible.

A Brief Guide to Giuliani’s … Friends in Ukraine – “Trump, Inc.” Podcast
Rudy Giuliani has been looking for “corruption” in Ukraine. It’s easy to find among the very people he’s befriended.


CNN won’t air Trump ad pushing unsubstantiated Biden-Ukraine claims. “In addition to disparaging CNN and its journalists, the ad makes assertions that have been proven demonstrably false by various news outlets, including CNN,” network spox says.

Owner of Firm Tied to Hunter Biden Will Be Subject of Ukraine Prosecutor’s Review

Echoing Trump, Russian TV Casts Joe Biden and Kurt Volker as Villains of Ukraine Saga
Russian television coverage of the unfolding scandal over Ukraine, which has focused on promoting smears against Joe Biden, has been fervently pro-Trump.

The thing is this entire saga is devastating to Biden’s theory that personal relationships with senate republicans + policy moderation will let him “get things done” as president.
If those friends are real now would be a great time for them to speak up!

Bannon, Schweizer and the Mercers Team Up to Advance Conspiracy Theory Targeting Biden

NYT has front page piece on how Biden isn’t handling Ukraine smear well….this is how NYT covered the Swift Boat lies, stressing how Dem was losing the GOP smear battle;

NYT points to this as proof that Biden is losing Ukraine smear battle:
“…and cable news was flashing chyrons by the hour showing Mr. Trump’s wild claims.”
Ponder that for a moment

Note: To my knowledge nobody has identified a smoking gun that proves Biden was doing anything other than what he said he was doing. That’s the issue. Not what media focuses on. On the other hand… Baker has a point…

Did you read the piece? It has a quote from Biden saying that he can’t believe Trump is
attacking his family? If Biden had been following politics the last 4 years, how could he
not fully expect Trump would attack his family?

If Biden was not prepared for this, what makes anyone think he would be prepared
for a general election against Trump? Everyone else knows it will be extremely brutal.

Note: My objection to the Biden responses I’ve seen is his refusal to ackowledge there ever was a question about what happened. Those responses plays into his tough guy schtick (i.e. he never apologizes) …presumably to 1) attract “conservative” voters – – and 2) deal with the Fox weaponized media era.

Biden released an oped today…

Maybe the question that Hunter Biden/Burisima should raise is, the role of corporate boards, on which people w/ famous names, or ex-somethings (e.g. George Shultz at Theranos) seem to confer respectability and veneer of accountability, with no real power over management and often no clue
Andrew Yang… Nov, 2017
Baker: The Robots Taking the Jobs Industry

The endless scare stories of robots taking all the jobs, or the threat of automation, fit this model. While this is a recurring theme in major media outlets, it basically makes zero sense.

  Baker: Andrew Yang Is Wrong


Responding to Yang’s wealth tax comment…
We have a wealth tax on the middle class and upper middle class known as ‘property taxes’ and it has not been repealed. It’s weird that taxing the politically connected super-wealthy has so many implementation issues.

The idea that the wealth tax is bad economics is based on an outdated concept that we
trade equity for efficiency. @HBoushey’s new book “Unbound” refutes this. In reality,
unrestrained inequality obstructs, subverts and distorts growth. Redistributive policies
are good economics.

Note: Dean Baker supports progressive taxation. Full stop. But he argues that it’s too easy to dodge taxes so focus on preventing the super rich from getting super rich in the first place.

Newsweek: President Andrew Yang Would Charge Harvard at Least $300 Million a Year to Establish a University in Ohio.

How about something much simpler, like take away tax exempt status for any non-profit
that pays anyone more than the president’s salary ($400k a year). Maybe that isn’t high
tech enough for Yang, but it’s a bit silly to be having specific taxes for individual institutions

Bill Weld… April 16th…
We asked @GovBillWeld 12 questions about his foreign policy views, from China’s treatment of the Uighurs to Venezuela’s crisis. Here’s how he answered

Whistleblower laws are intended to protect against retaliation. The President’s constitutional duty is to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” Trump? He baldly threatens a whistleblower and any other potential whistleblowers. His oath was clearly meaningless – to him.

The POTUS is facing impeachment for extorting a foreign government to assist his reelection. So what does @realDonaldTrump do today? He urges yet another foreign government, China, to assist in his reelection. Creating his very own coalition of the willing.
Joe Walsh…Aug 25th…
Joe Walsh: “This president deserves to be impeached. Jake, nobody from the White House and no high-level Republicans are on this show today because there’s nothing to defend. This president betrayed his country again this week.” (video)
Mark Sanford…September 8th
During his last term in Congress, Sanford voted for the GOP tax cut

He wasn’t a deficit hawk then. But he’s running as a deficit hawk now…

During that term he also voted to increase the deaths and suffering of his constituents
along with Fortenberry, Bacon and Smith…

June 2017 CBBP…
People Losing Medicaid Under House Republican Bill Would Face High Barriers to Coverage
Low-Income 60-Year-Olds in Most States Would Have to Spend
More than Half of Their Income on Premiums
Donald Trump
Shocking Study Shows Fracking Is Depleting Drinking Water Sources
at a Catastrophic Rate

Pretty instructive that homelessness is up and the % of people with health insurance is down in the longest run of economic growth in US history

The Trump administration has moved to cut funding to the U.S. food stamps program for the 3rd time. The latest proposed cut would slice $4.5 billion from the program over 5 years, trimming monthly benefits by as much as $75 for 1 in 5 struggling families.

See charts…
Ahead of payrolls Friday, some charts illustrating the broad based slowing in hiring. The health care sector is doing a lot of heavy lifting accounting for more than a third of all jobs created in 2019, up from 20% through most of the recovery and 16% of total payrolls

See chart…
A reminder of where we are on wages: From late 2017 through late 2018, it looked
like wage growth was picking up. *That ended.* Wage growth has slipped this year.

the wage numbers here are *insane*. The tightest labor market in decades
and decades and ordinary working people are *barely* seeing gains.

This chart from @DeutscheBank’s Torsten Slok is ominous.
> More downside risk to ISM in coming months

See chart…
The slowdown in manufacturing has been apparent in the employment data
for sometime. The question is whether/when we get to contraction as in late 2016.

Institute for Supply Management’s factory index…
ISM Manufacturing Index Falls To 10-Year Low As China Trade War Takes Toll

Donald Trump’s trade war doesn’t seem to be going very well for him

The leaders of 23 corn grower organizations have sent a letter to Trump, arguing that his admin’s biofuel waivers have reduced demand for their crops.
“Frustration in the countryside is growing,” the letter reads.

U.S. farm bankruptcies rise as trade war drags on

US-China trade war forcing many farmers to take 2nd jobs to make ends meet

Trump farm secretary (Sonny Perdue): No guarantee small farms will survive

Secretary of Agriculture’s Comments On Dairy   Strike Some As ‘Shocking,’ ‘Disappointing’

Omaha Rally Seeks Trump’s Attention, Perdue’s Firing

At a rally of cattlemen raising their voices against low cattle prices and excessive profits by beef packers, the biggest cheers and applause came when it was suggested President Donald Trump fire Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue.

“There are six actions President Trump can take today to save the U.S. cattle market,” said Vaughn Meyer, OCM vice president. He listed the following: …


How #FairCattleMarkets was hijacked

Also Perdue’s doing…
USDA expects ‘significant delays’ in economic research reports

The president just broke the rule (again) that presidents and WH officials aren’t supposed
to comment on  the jobs report until 1 hour after its release. …

*Not OK*. The 1 hour delay between the release and administration commentary preserves
the critical distinction between objective statistics & policy analysis. Violations threaten
trust in federal statistics and understanding of the distinction.

The chicken industry is lobbying for faster line speeds, but in the mean time, Trump’s USDA granted 11 processing plants special permission to speed up their slaughter lines – despite OSHA records showing a history of grisly accidents

See referenced Trump comment…
1) This news is a week old
2) Apple’s announcement came after USTR exempted key MacBook components
from tariffs, which is … not evidence that tariffs work
3) This is case in point for why the exclusions process is inherently unfair
and subject to political manipulation!

The reason there is pressure on President Trump to articulate an alternative to the ACA is because he is supporting a lawsuit to overturn the health law in its entirety.

See infographic…
27% of nonelderly adults have a pre-existing condition – such as a #disability or chronic
illness – that likely would make them uninsurable in the individual market without the
#ACA’s protections. See the updated analysis from my @KFF colleagues:

Pre-existing conditions include diagnoses such as #HIV, #Alzheimers, #CerebralPalsy,
#diabetes, #epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, hemophilia, #hepatitisC, #lupus, #mentalillness,
multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, and paraplegia, among others.


The #ACA’s #PreExistingConditions protections are among many provisions that could
be overturned in the Texas vs. Azar case currently pending in the 5th Circuit.

Explaining Texas v. U.S.:
A Guide to the 5th Circuit Appeal in the Case Challenging the ACA

Note: NE’s Doug Peterson was an original supporter of this lawsuit. See map.

Trump Administration Invitation for States to Design Wellness Programs Draws Swift Backlash

Trump’s Medicare-related executive order…

Note: Trump includes several M4A Big Lies in his executive order

See text graphic…
From sabotaging the #ACA to threatening the wellbeing of our seniors, Trump &
Republicans keep attacking health care for millions and putting profit before people.
@RepDebDingell and I respond to Trump’s proposal

See text graphic…
The president’s executive order suggests that the prices paid by Medicare should more
closely match those paid by private insurers. That would increase the cost of Medicare
enormously, since private insurers pay much higher prices than Medicare.

If payments to providers increase due to the president’s executive order, the increase
in Medicare spending could have big, indirect spillover effects, shortening the life of the
Medicare HI trust fund, increasing Medicare premiums & raising payments
for Medicare Advantage plans

The new Executive Order includes a few provisions that would impact traditional
Medicare,one of which aims to remove barriers to private contracting between patients
& doctors. This could unravel financial protections & lead to higher (surprise) medical
bills for Medicare patents

The Trump Administration says it wants to “protect” Medicare by expanding Medicare
Advantage, a program that allows corporate health insurers to bilk taxpayers for billions.
How does this plan compare to improved #MedicareForAll?

See chart…
Medicare Advantage:
Plans “cherry pick” relatively healthy, low-cost patients to pad  their bottom lines.
Each and every American would be covered regardless of pre-existing conditions.
Source: via @KFF

Rest of thread

Harris’ plan expands Medicare Advantage, too…
Potter: Harris needs to rethink her plan to put private insurers in charge of Medicare

Medicare Advantage is a taxpayer-funded welfare program for health insurers. It:
– Restricts seniors’ choice of doctor /hospital
– Avoid sicker seniors to increase profits
– Takes a whopping 13.6% in overhead/profits, vs. 2.0% of traditional Medicare.

But the Trump administration’s Executive Order today is designed to take the
privatization of Medicare ten steps forward, and in so doing could end it as we know it.

Medicare Advantage is part of a decades-long campaign to privatize the Medicare
program. It generates billions in profits for insurers, makes life miserable
for patients  with significant medical needs and drives up costs for taxpayers. via @Harpers

For years, Republicans have put their thumb on the scale in favor of for-profit Medicare
Advantage plans. Under the Trump Administration, that thumb has turned into an entire
hand. Medicare Advantage is a scam. Here are 10 reasons why. (thread)

See referenced video…
African American, Kwame Jackson was legit winner of The Apprentice Season One but Donald Trump told Producer Bill Pruitt “America wasn’t ready for an n-word” The show secretly & illegally chose Bill Rancic. Hurt Kwame’s career. Mark Burnett approved. Trump said it with his mic on

Nichols: There are no honest excuses left for Trump
Trump and Walker may claim that the impeachment inquiry is a partisan “witch hunt.” But the transcript of the president’s “do us a favor…” strong-arming of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says different.

We have the crime we have the cover-up and now we’ve got impeachment –
@NicholsUprising talks about the process of impeaching Trump
on the Trump Watch podcast

Despite what Trump claimed today, the @nytimes did *not* report that Adam Schiff
helped write the whistleblower’s complaint. In fact, Schiff did not even know the
whistleblower’s identity, officials told the NYT. Read our story here:

…when Trump is facing jail time he has the right to confront his accusers. No such right
exists in a trial on his impeachment and removal. If he is that anxious to confront his
accuser, he can resign now and expedite the criminal prosecution.

Trump’s impeachment defiance spooks key voting blocs

Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner Made $82 Million While Working in the White House Last Year – Fortune

…Biden’s kid must be really jealous!


According to the pool report, Trump has arrived at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, VA.
This is Trump’s 235th day at a Trump golf club and 308th day at a Trump property as president.

A Trump hotel mystery: Giant reservations followed by empty rooms

How Trump’s DC Hotel Swallowed Washington

Fugelsang fact checks Trump…

Trump’s health care record isn’t good…
Trump’s Medicare-related executive order:

The president’s executive order suggests that the prices paid by Medicare should more closely match those paid by private insurers. That would increase the cost of Medicare enormously, since private insurers pay much higher prices than Medicare.

If payments to providers increase due to the president’s executive order, the increase in Medicare spending could have big, indirect spillover effects, shortening the life of the Medicare HI trust fund, increasing Medicare premiums & raising payments for Medicare Advantage plans

The new Executive Order includes a few provisions that would impact traditional Medicare, one of which aims to remove barriers to private contracting between patients & doctors. This could unravel financial protections & lead to higher (surprise) medical bills for Medicare patents

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