One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures is keeping on top of the sheer number of horrors, indignities, and normalization of the aggressively abnormal that they unleash every single day.
So here is a daily thread for all of us to share all the things that are going on, thus crowdsourcing a daily compendium of the onslaught of conservative erosion of our rights and our very democracy.
Stay engaged. Stay vigilant. Resist.
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Here are some things in the news today:
Greg Sargent at the Washington Post: The GOP Has a New Plan to Destroy Obamacare; It's Even Crueler Than the Last One.
Now Republicans are indeed set to introduce the new plan, multiple reports tell us. And judging by a new study set to be released today, it is even crueler than the last GOP plan: The study finds premiums would likely soar for the sick, probably pushing them off coverage.This is just unreal. They took a hideously cruel plan and made it even crueler.
...It allows states to seek a waiver to get rid of the Affordable Care Act's prohibition on charging higher premiums to people with preexisting conditions, on the condition that states set up or participate in high-risk pools that would help cover any of those people who lose insurance.
...But the waiver on prohibitions against jacking up premiums for people with preexisting conditions — which is called "community rating" — is a major problem. It would smack them with far more in premiums — potentially pushing them off coverage entirely.
The liberal Center for American Progress (CAP) conducted a new study — set to be released later today — on how much these premiums might soar for people with various preexisting ailments. The "surcharge" represents additional premium charges that insurers are projected to add to coverage of each condition, and the numbers are eye-popping.
...Meanwhile, the new GOP plan would keep in place the old plan's phase-out of the Medicaid expansion, which would itself result in 14 million fewer people on Medicaid, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
Estimated spike in premiums if you have...— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) April 20, 2017
Lung cancer: $73k
Breast cancer: $28k
A pregnancy(!): $17k https://t.co/62b2I7RHEH
Trump is reportedly determined to get this done in the next ten days in order to have a major "first 100 days" accomplishment, and the Republicans in Congress are eager to deliver one for him. They're also undoubtedly keen to not have a second major failure on healthcare. So there's a lot of reason to believe this shit could pass.
I am very fearful and very angry. Prepare to start making lots and lots of calls to your reps. Again.
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Ju-min Park at Reuters: North Korea Warns of 'Super-Mighty Preemptive Strike' as U.S. Plans Next Move. "North Korean state media warned the United States of a 'super-mighty preemptive strike' after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the United States was looking at ways to bring pressure to bear on North Korea over its nuclear programme. ...The Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North's ruling Workers' Party, did not mince its words. 'In the case of our super-mighty preemptive strike being launched, it will completely and immediately wipe out not only U.S. imperialists' invasion forces in South Korea and its surrounding areas but the U.S. mainland and reduce them to ashes,' it said."
Michelle Ye Hee Lee at the Washington Post: Trump's Claim That Korea 'Actually Used to Be a Part of China'. "Trump's inartful retelling of Sino-Korean history sparked widespread outrage among Koreans, who are particularly sensitive to the U.S. president's rhetoric amid heightened tensions between North and South Korea. Leaders across the political spectrum criticized Trump's characterization, calling it a clear distortion of history and an attempt to undermine Korean sovereignty."
Everything is fine.
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Ned Parker, Jonathan Landay, and John Walcott at Reuters: Putin-Linked Think Tank Drew Up Plan to Sway 2016 U.S. Election. "A Russian government think tank controlled by Vladimir Putin developed a plan to swing the 2016 U.S. presidential election to Donald Trump and undermine voters' faith in the American electoral system, three current and four former U.S. officials told Reuters. They described two confidential documents from the think tank as providing the framework and rationale for what U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded was an intensive effort by Russia to interfere with the Nov. 8 election. U.S. intelligence officials acquired the documents, which were prepared by the Moscow-based Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, after the election. The institute is run by retired senior Russian foreign intelligence officials appointed by Putin's office."
Edward-Isaac Dovere, Eric Geller, and Matthew Nussbaum at Politico: Trump Blows His Deadline on Anti-Hacking Plan. "President-elect Donald Trump was very clear: 'I will appoint a team to give me a plan within 90 days of taking office,' he said in January, after getting a U.S. intelligence assessment of Russian interference in last year's elections and promising to address cybersecurity. Thursday, Trump hits his 90-day mark. There is no team, there is no plan, and there is no clear answer from the White House on who would even be working on what." Of course there isn't. Because he doesn't give a flying fuck about the Russian interference that helped him get elected, except insofar as he definitely appreciates the assist.
Ed Kilgore at New York Mag: Trump's Ego Could Cause a Government Shutdown. "'The White House, under internal pressure to show legislative achievements ahead of the 100-day mark, is gearing up for a government shutdown fight to secure money for a border wall, more immigration enforcement officers, and a bigger military, according to White House and congressional sources familiar with the plan.' ...Border-wall funding is one of several 'poison pills' congressional Democrats have signaled might justify a Senate filibuster, gridlock, and a government shutdown."
[Content Note: War on agency] Teddy Wilson at Rewire: Texas GOP Uses Budget Tricks to Boost Funding for Anti-Choice Clinics. "Texas Right to Life, the state's most prominent and well-funded anti-choice lobby, reportedly collaborated this month with GOP members of the Texas House to funnel millions to fake clinics through the 'Alternatives to Abortion' (A2A) program, diverting funds for families with low incomes along the way. With the two-year budget passed April 7, the A2A program is now set to receive even more state funding than [Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R)] proposed, while critics accuse the program of funding organizations that use deceptive and manipulative practices to further a religious and ideological agenda." Seethe.
[CN: Misogyny] Matt Shuham at TPM: Senate Judiciary Chair: 'I Would Expect' a Supreme Court Vacancy This Summer. "The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said Tuesday that he expected a new vacancy to open on the Supreme Court within months. 'I would expect a resignation this summer,' Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said at a National Association of Manufacturers event in Muscatine, Iowa, the Muscatine Journal reported. Grassley made the comment in response to a question about the court during a Q&A at the event, according to the paper. He said a resignation was 'rumored,' and that he expected [Donald] Trump's next nominee to the high court to be picked from the same list as Justice Neil Gorsuch. 'I don't know about racial and ethnic divisions, but there's some very good females on there that would make good Supreme Court Justices as well,' he said, according to the paper." Females. JFC.
[CN: Racism; anti-Black slur] Jamil Smith at MTV: Systemic Racism, Still a Thing. "This kind of bigotry is both ethereal and tangible, and it is all around us. When racism shows up in our laws, that's worse than a thousand people calling us 'niggers.' The president's Muslim travel ban and harsh immigration enforcement are good examples of bigotry manifesting in our public policy, but for once, Trump isn't even the most worrisome politician in his own administration. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is putting in some real work at the moment to show just how racist a government can be in the modern era. The late civil rights activist Coretta Scott King warned us of Sessions's impulse to disregard the civil rights of African-Americans, and his tenure thus far shows that she was right: Whether it's withdrawing opposition to discriminatory state voter-identification laws or calling for a new War on Drugs (especially marijuana) to feed private and public prisons, Sessions has seized the power of the state to exacerbate racial inequality and stagnate progressive measures to fight it."
Andy Towle at Towleroad: Sarah Palin, Ted Nugent, and Kid Rock Visited Trump in the White House and Mocked Hillary Clinton's Portrait. And took pictures, which Palin posted to her social media accounts. Fuck all of these people. Deplorable.
Meanwhile, from the liberal side of the celebrity aisle and in good news resistance: Bruce Springsteen Releases New Anti-Trump Protest Song with Joe Grushecky. "Bruce Springsteen has reunited with longtime collaborator and Houserockers frontman Joe Grushecky for an anti-Trump protest song, 'That's What Makes Us Great.'" Boom.
What have you been reading that we need to resist today?