Category Archives: US Presidents & candidates

Obama slams ‘fundamental meanness’ of Senate healthcare bill

By Max Greenwood, The Hill, 6/22/17

Former President Barack Obama on Thursday blasted Senate Republican leaders’ plan to overhaul large parts of his signature healthcare legislation, ObamaCare.

“The Senate bill, unveiled today, is not a health care bill,” he wrote in a Facebook post. “It’s a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America.

“Simply put, if there’s a chance you might get sick, get old, or start a family – this bill will do you harm,” Obama wrote. “And small tweaks over the course of the next couple weeks, under the guise of

See more at The Hill

Of course Trump called Comey a liar: That’s always been his strategy

by Dana Milbank, Washington Post, 6/12/17

So Donald Trump is calling James Comey a liar.

This puts the fired FBI director in some impressive company. Among those Trump has accused of lying, via pronouncements, tweets and retweets:

Ted Cruz

Marco Rubio

Ben Carson

John Kasich

Jeb Bush

George W. Bush

The Bush dynasty

Fellow GOP presidential candidates

All candidates

John McCain

Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump publicly insulted at least 68 people or groups in 2015, many of them multiple times. Here is a comprehensive list. Watch: Here’s all the people Donald Trump insulted in 2015. (Gillian Brockell,Thomas LeGro, Julio Negron/The Washington Post)

Barack Obama

The Obama administration

Hillary Clinton

Tim Kaine

Nancy Pelosi

Bernie Sanders

Democrats

The Senate

George Will

GOP strategist Rick Tyler

The Club for Growth

The media

Reporters

Journalists

Fake-news media

CNN

The New York Times

The New York Post

The New York Daily News

Chris Cuomo

Megyn Kelly

Dana Perino

John King

Wall Street Journal editorialist Mary Kissel

Women who accused him of sexual misconduct

China

Doctors

Baseball’s Alex Rodriguez

Star Jones

An Ebola patient

Edward Snowden

Anyone who didn’t tune in to GOP debates to watch Trump

Accusing others of lying is a bit rich coming from the man who has done more than any other to turn public discourse into a parallel universe of alternative facts….

keep reading at Washington Post

What did James Clapper say in Australia?

From “Address to the National Press Club by Professor James Clapper AO,” Australian National University, 6/7/17. The former National Intelligence director’s whole talk is of interest; here are 2 excerpts:

…Then President-elect Trump disparaged the Intelligence Community’s high-confidence assessment of the magnitude and diversity of the Russian interference by characterizing us as “Nazis”. This was prompted by his and his team’s extreme paranoia about, and resentment of, any doubt cast on the legitimacy of his election. When he made this absurd allegation, I felt an obligation to defend the men and women of the United States intelligence community, so I called him on 11 January. Surprisingly, he took my call. I tried, naively it turned out, to appeal to his “higher instincts” — by pointing out that the intelligence community he was about to inherit is a national treasure, and that the people in it were committed to supporting him and making him successful. Ever transactional, he simply asked me to publicly refute the infamous “dossier”, which I could not and would not do.

When I later learned that the first place he was going to visit after the Inauguration was CIA, I thought — again, naively — that perhaps I had gotten through to him. For the intelligence community (not just the CIA) the wall in the front lobby at CIA Headquarters is hallowed, with over 120 stars commemorating CIA officers who have paid the ultimate price. He chose to use that as a prop for railing about the size of the inauguration crowd on the Mall, and his battle with the “fake news” media. His subsequent actions — sharing sensitive intelligence with the Russians, and, compromising its source reflect ignorance or disrespect — are likewise very problematic.

Similarly, the whole episode with the firing of Jim Comey a distinguished public servant. Apart from the egregious, inexcusable manner in which it was conducted, this episode reflected complete disregard for the independence and autonomy of the FBI, our premier law enforcement organization….

[from the Q&A]

I lived through Watergate. I was on active duty then in Air Force, I was a young officer. It was a scary time. It was against the backdrop of the post-Vietnam trauma as well which seemed to, at least in my memory, amplify the crisis in our system with Watergate. I have to say, though, I think when you compare the two that Watergate pales really, in my view, compared to what we’re confronting now.

Presidential angst is not a good basis for national policy

by Nathaniel Smith, , 5/11/17

The May 11 Daily Local News provides some strong commentary about the firing of FBI director James Comey.

The headline of the AP article “Before the ax, Comey was pushing Trump-Russia probe harder” says a lot. It’s pretty obvious that Comey was not fired for his 2016 comments about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails. Someone is lying again in the White House. What a surprise!

As the editorial “Comey firing seen as sabotage of Russia probe” from the Denver Post brings out, it is surely not a coincidence that Comey was hot on the Moscow Connection trail. The Denver Post’s own headline “The Comey firing stinks; a special prosecutor is a must” draws the necessary conclusion supported by both PA Senator Bob Casey and PA-06 congressman Ryan Costello.

That editorial refers to “the president’s angst with Comey.” The German word” angst,” defined as “a feeling of dread, anxiety, or anguish,” describes well the national political mood in the potentially brief era of Trump.

Another Denver Post article (from the Washington Post) says a lot in its headline “How Trump’s anger, impatience prompted him to fire the FBI director” and goes on to give a lot of significant background.

Angst, anger, impatience… that’s Trump all over. We knew last year that a lot of voters liked candidate Trump’s volatile behavior, unguarded language, and middle-of-the-night tweets. Such traits may be less attractive in a president. Obama’s cool and no-drama exterior may be looking a lot better now….

keep reading at Politics: A View from West Chester