Rep. Cummings Cites “Grave Concerns” Over Trump’s Emoluments Policy

A frustrated Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) sent a letter to officials within the Trump Organization, pressing for more information about how the President’s businesses operate in compliance with the US Constitution. Cummings released to the public on Wednesday a 9-page glossy pamphlet provided by the Trump Organization to the House Oversight Committee this month. The document detailed how Trump’s business would avoid violating the Constitution’s emoluments clause, which prohibits Presidents from accepting foreign gifts. Government ethics watchdogs warned that foreign entities could attempt to curry… Keep Reading

Trump Aide Mulvaney Cites 1996 Study to Backstab Appalachian Voters

A Republican congressman who represents some of the most deprived parts of the country is anxious that the Trump administration is recklessly planning on destroying a program designed for his constituents. Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio) admonished top White House budget aide Mick Mulvaney on Wednesday, saying the administration was relying on a 21-year-old study when justifying plans to shutter the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). Johnson told Mulvaney that the program last year raised $866 million in public and private investment, and that more than three-quarters of… Keep Reading

Trump Budget to Face a Receptive Capitol Hill with Knives Out for the Poor

Several Republicans have declared President Trump’s budget “dead on arrival” in Congress. But there are still a lot of shared goals in the document that could bring the two branches together—namely, the inflicting of pain on lower income Americans. Trump’s blueprint includes hundreds of billions of dollars in cuts to Medicaid and public assistance programs. Disability benefits and food stamps would be slashed, energy and rental assistance programs for the poor and elderly would also be eliminated, along with student loan affordability measures. Those drastic… Keep Reading

Obama CIA Head And Trump Agree: Disclosing Presidential Activity is the Real Problem

Barack Obama’s CIA head found common ground with the Trump administration, decrying media reports of the President sharing state secrets with the Russian government. Testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, John Brennan told lawmakers that American officials have shared classified information with the Russian government, and that Trump probably violated protocols for information-sharing, if press reports about the May 12 meeting are true. “What I was very concerned about, though, is the subsequent releases of what appears to be classified information purporting to point… Keep Reading

Another Year, Another SIGAR Panning of Afghan Rebuilding

The watchdog charged with overseeing the US government’s costly reconstruction effort in Afghanistan has more bad news: the campaign is still plagued by corruption. It is a common refrain from John Sopko, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), who produces quarterly reports on the $117 billion rebuilding mission. “The big issue…is corruption,” he said on C-SPAN Monday, discussing the oversight body’s latest report. “We have problems of intense corruption in the Afghan military and police,” Sopko added. He used a metaphor his office has… Keep Reading

Feinstein, Other Dems Back Probation Officer Arrest Bill Decried as Abusive by House Dems

A bill that advanced through the House could lead to unconstitutional abuses by lightly-trained law enforcement officers, Democrats have warned. Some of their colleagues in the Senate, however, appear poised to help the legislation become law. Federal probation officers would be granted the power to arrest those not under their direct supervision, under the proposal. It passed the House on Friday in a 229-177 vote, largely along party lines. If and when Senators decide to take up the measure, it will have the support of… Keep Reading

FCC Chair Ajit Pai Tips First Domino in Play Toward Internet Dystopia

In a vote that lasted just a few seconds, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) initiated the deconstruction of sweeping internet regulations that preserve open access to independent information. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which aims to repeal Net Neutrality protections, was approved by the three-member commission in a 2-1 party line vote on Thursday morning. Passage of the measure kicks off a public comment period that ends on August 16. During that time, the FCC will solicit feedback on its repeal proposal. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai… Keep Reading

Steve Mnuchin Walks Back Administration Support of Glass-Steagall

President Trump isn’t interested in restoring the Glass-Steagall Act, reversing prior claims made by White House officials. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Thursday that the administration doesn’t support the segregation of retail and investment banking—the crux of the Depression-era legislation. “We think that would have a very significant problem on [sic] the financial markets, on the economy, and on liquidity, and we think there are proper things that we could look at around regulation,” Mnuchin said. “But we do not support a separation of banks… Keep Reading

Comey Memo Turns Up Volume on Impeachment Calls

Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) stepped to the House floor on Wednesday and made a direct appeal to impeach President Donald Trump for his firing of FBI Director James Comey. Green’s demand comes one day after it was revealed that Trump asked Comey to drop the bureau’s probe into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn before the President fired Comey. “I rise today, Mr. Speaker, to call for the impeachment of the President of the United States for obstruction of justice,” Green boomed from the House chamber. “This… Keep Reading

Chelsea Manning, Mass Educator, Freed from Prison

The source for some of the most explosive revelations in a generation walked free from a military prison on Wednesday morning. Army Private Chelsea Manning was released from a detention facility in Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas on Wednesday, after being imprisoned since 2010. She was freed ahead of schedule after President Obama commuted her 35-year sentence in January. Manning was convicted by a military court in 2013 under the Espionage Act, for passing state secrets to Wikileaks. “After another anxious four months of waiting, the day… Keep Reading

Amid Scandal-Plagued Week, Trump Agenda Looks In Trouble

A lynch pin of President Trump’s nationalist agenda looks dead on arrival in the Senate. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that Trump’s proposed “border adjustment tax” stands little chance of being approved by the upper chamber. Calls for such a levy served as part of the Trump campaign’s broadsides against free trade agreements and the deindustrialization of the United States. “It probably wouldn’t pass the Senate,” McConnell told Bloomberg news on Tuesday, referring to the border tax. “The Secretary of the Treasury, and [Speaker… Keep Reading

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