ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles in the "Populism" Category

Friday Talking Points [458] -- Gold Star Lies

[ Posted Friday, October 20th, 2017 – 17:41 PDT ]

Call this the week when White House Chief of Staff John Kelly lost all remaining shreds of credibility. Kelly, as we all know, was supposed to bring the adult supervision to the White House that would magically transform Donald Trump into a serious president. A retired Marine Corps general was going to whip the White House into shape, and clear sailing ahead would thus quickly ensue.

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Trump Holds Third Real Press Conference

[ Posted Monday, October 16th, 2017 – 17:13 PDT ]

President Donald Trump gave an unexpected press conference today, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell by his side. What is really remarkable, though, almost ten months in to his term in office, is how few press conferences Trump has so far given. In fact, the true measure of the "adult day care center" situation at the White House is how effective the people surrounding Trump have been at blocking Trump from giving freewheeling press conferences. Before he became president, he used to love doing these out on the campaign trail, but not so much since he was sworn in.

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Friday Talking Points [457] -- Buck-Passer In Chief

[ Posted Friday, October 13th, 2017 – 17:48 PDT ]

On Harry Truman's desk famously sat a sign which proudly proclaimed: "The Buck Stops Here." If Donald Trump had such an item, it might read: "Buck-Passer In Chief." His governing style (if it can even be dignified as such) is to cause a crisis on his own, and then dump the entire problem on Congress to deal with. Because we all know what masterful problem-solvers the Republican-led Congress are, or something. This could lead to utter disaster on many fronts, within the next few months.

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White House Tries Deal-Making

[ Posted Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 – 17:09 PDT ]

Amidst all the continuing distractions emanating from the White House these days (I.Q. tests, the N.F.L., World War III, etc.), something interesting and unprecedented has happened in the past few weeks. The Trump administration has begun actual negotiations with Congress, on two contentious issues. It's rather astonishing when you think about it, but this is actually the first time such a thing has happened since Trump took office.

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Dianne Feinstein Decides To Run Again

[ Posted Monday, October 9th, 2017 – 17:14 PDT ]

Dianne Feinstein was born less than three months after Franklin Delano Roosevelt was sworn into office for the first time, in 1933. Today, she announced she will be seeking another term in the Senate, even though she is already the oldest sitting senator. If re-elected, she will be 85 years old when she starts her next 6-year term of office.

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Friday Talking Points [456] -- Rex Says What Everyone's Been Thinking

[ Posted Friday, October 6th, 2017 – 17:27 PDT ]

It's getting kind of hard to understand why Rex Tillerson is still secretary of state. He just had an extremely rough week, and that's even without counting the breaking news that he had previously called President Trump not just a "moron" but a "fucking moron." It's easy to get distracted by such salacious news (especially when Tillerson pointedly refused to deny the "moron" part of it), but even before that juicy leak, Tillerson was roundly being ridiculed for, once again, how his boss snarkily contradicted and belittled him on Twitter. Last weekend, Trump destroyed Tillerson's efforts to bring North Korea to the diplomatic table, tweeting that Tillerson was "wasting his time."

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Friday Talking Points [455] -- Price Break!

[ Posted Friday, September 29th, 2017 – 17:49 PDT ]

As we sat down to write this, the news broke that Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price has resigned. So, of course, we immediately had to come up with a snappy "price" pun for our title. We could have gone with the Rolls Royce slogan ("If You Have To Ask The Price, You Can't Afford It"), or maybe "The High Price Of Airfare These Days," but both are kind of wordy. So we had to settle for "Price Break!" (we did consider "Price Cut," but that would have been more appropriate if he had actually been fired). The news of Price's resignation came immediately following the news that President Donald Trump was going to decide -- tonight -- whether to fire him or not. So, one way or another, the Price would have been lowered, so to speak.

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Trump Tries To Cut His Own Taxes 81%!

[ Posted Wednesday, September 27th, 2017 – 17:05 PDT ]

The Alternative Minimum Tax (as Rodney Dangerfield might have put it) don't get no respect. Few who don't pay it have ever even heard of it. Those who do pay it hate it. The A.M.T. has no real champions among the political class, because there are so many other facets of tax policy to get worked up about. Take the estate tax, for instance -- a tax only paid at death, but one with a rousing political chorus on both sides (Republicans scornfully refer to it as the "death tax"). The estate tax gets some respect in Washington, both pro and anti. The A.M.T., not so much. But it should get a whole lot more attention now that the GOP has released their new tax-cutting outline. Because Donald Trump is effectively trying to cut his own taxes by a whopping 81 percent -- and, really, that's just the minimum tax break Trump would receive.

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Third And Long For GOP

[ Posted Tuesday, September 26th, 2017 – 16:51 PDT ]

Since football and politics collided on the gridiron last weekend, it now must officially be considered "football metaphor season." So, to get in the spirit: Republicans in Congress are facing third down with a long way to go, right before the end of the first half.

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Friday Talking Points [454] -- Senator Cassidy Fails Jimmy Kimmel Test

[ Posted Friday, September 22nd, 2017 – 17:28 PDT ]

The zombie legislation attacks (again)! While much else was going on in the political world this week, the most important event was the reanimation of the Republican "repeal and replace Obamacare" effort: It's not dead! It's alive! And it's lurching around threatening millions!

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