ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles for May, 2017

Health Bill's Score Still Breathtakingly Bad

[ Posted Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 – 15:23 PDT ]

The new Congressional Budget Office numbers are in for the House healthcare bill, and they're almost as breathtakingly bad as the first version's score. Instead of 24 million Americans losing health insurance in the next ten years, now "only" 23 million will lose health insurance. The number of people who will lose health insurance next year alone stayed the same, at 14 million. Medicaid funding will be cut by $834 billion, instead of $880 billion. This would save a paltry $12 billion a year, instead of the $15 billion a year the original bill would have saved. That's a lot of pain for not very much money saved. Which Democrats are going to be pointing out soon, in midterm ads.

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Newspaper War!

[ Posted Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017 – 16:40 PDT ]

To really be true to today's subject, I should have come up with a headline more along the lines of: "Donald Trump Takes America Back To 1890s!" That's a tad sensationalistic, but we do seem to be right in the middle of a good old-fashioned newspaper war. In the past month alone, I have lost count of the times that major scoops about the extent of the Trump administration's misdeeds have appeared in both the New York Times and the Washington Post. Even without counting them, the score seems pretty close to tied, although the Post may have a slight edge at the current moment.

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Trump's Exhausting First Road Trip

[ Posted Monday, May 22nd, 2017 – 16:41 PDT ]

President Donald Trump has only just begun his first road trip outside the United States, and he's already "exhausted," according to one of his own advisors. This may or may not be true, since anything either Trump or any of his spokespeople say at this point has to be taken with a grain of salt -- especially considering the "exhausted" comment was given as an excuse for a Trump gaffe (more on that in a bit). But this week's calendar for Trump seems to have been constructed on the theme of: "Any Trump campaign promises left unbroken? Well, let's see how many we can break in a single week!"

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Friday Talking Points [437] -- That Thing That Trump Did

[ Posted Friday, May 19th, 2017 – 17:44 PDT ]

We'd like to begin today by apologizing for not including whatever scandal broke while we were writing this column. It takes us hours to write these, and while we're typing we're not reading news headlines. So this weekly wrapup will doubtlessly not mention whatever scandal broke in the past few hours, and for this we apologize. We would direct you to the final talking point today to cover this lapse (from which we also borrowed our subtitle today, because Daniel Drezner's article is such a hilarious piece of satire).

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Scandalpalooza!

[ Posted Thursday, May 18th, 2017 – 17:12 PDT ]

From the beginning, the administration of Donald Trump has been providing roughly one scandal per week. Not a week went by without some explosive story appearing in the headlines. That pace, obviously, was unsustainable. Incredibly, however, this pace is now rapidly increasing. Last week, we moved into "scandal of the day" territory, and are now fast approaching "scandal of the hour." Welcome to the Scandalpalooza that is the Trump administration!

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Kid President

[ Posted Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 – 16:33 PDT ]

The American presidency is being dumbed-down before our very eyes. It's as if we're all trapped within one of those "child in an adult body" movies (think: Big or Freaky Friday), awaiting the next wacky turn of events to play out across our screens. What will "Kid President" do next? Throw a tantrum on Twitter? Fire somebody else at the White House? Yell at his subordinates again? Try to fire Congress? Cause an international incident by doing something extremely rude while meeting the Pope? Stay tuned, the next unbelievable plot twist is right around the corner!

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Trump Slumps In Polls

[ Posted Tuesday, May 16th, 2017 – 15:35 PDT ]

I thought it'd be fun today to take a look at President Donald Trump's poll numbers. This is mainly because any casual interpretation of such polling would have to conclude that Trump's numbers are about to fall off a cliff. So I thought it'd be fun to take a "before" snapshot, to see where Trump was before the whole "telling secrets to Russia in the Oval Office" thing is reflected in his job approval polling. Over the next week or two, the impact of this week's scandal will become clear, but for now the polling data doesn't reflect any of it.

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Turning Point Approaching In War Against The Islamic State

[ Posted Monday, May 15th, 2017 – 17:25 PDT ]

The war against the Islamic State, currently being waged (to varying degrees) by the United States, Iraq, Iraqi Kurds, Iran, Syria, Syrian Kurds, Syrian Rebels, Turkey, and Russia is approaching a big turning point. The Islamic State has been steadily losing territory for over a year now, and they're on the brink of losing control over the two most important cities in their self-proclaimed caliphate: Mosul and Raqqa. This could be a death blow to the Islamic State's territorial claims, although the group itself will probably survive as a stateless international terrorist organization (much like Al Qaeda).

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Friday Talking Points [436] -- Trump Dumps Top Cop

[ Posted Friday, May 12th, 2017 – 16:49 PDT ]

This week will go down in American political history as the week people stopped comparing Donald Trump to Andrew Jackson, and instead began comparing Trump to a different Oval Office predecessor, Richard Nixon. If we had a dollar for every time the word "Nixonian" was written or uttered onscreen this week, we could retire tomorrow.

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In Praise Of Court Jesters

[ Posted Thursday, May 11th, 2017 – 18:01 PDT ]

There must be something to the myths, though, even if only in a Jungian-archetypical kind of way. Because they certainly still remain with us. In today's world, of course, they are not dressed in motley (well, some less so than others...); and instead of a perch near the throne, they crack wise on television shows to an audience of millions. They are our late-night comedians. Two of them were in the news earlier this week, but before I get to Monday night's performances by Jimmy Kimmel and Seth Meyers, I'd like to confess my own evolution in favor of our modern court jesters.

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