What Now?! – 8/19/19

Politico: “Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned that a Trump administration proposal that cut several billion dollars in foreign aid already approved by Congress may blow up the massive $2.5-trillion budget deal inked just before the August recess. This was the deal that ended a potential debt crisis, and lowered the chances of a government shutdown this fall.

GOP and Democratic leaders on the panels overseeing foreign aid in both the House and Senate have complained about the potential rescissions package coming from OMB, expected to be between $2 billion and $4 billion. They’ve written to Acting OMB Director Russell Vought and Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to request that the administration hold off, although White House officials looked like they were ready to move ahead anyway.

Now Pelosi — armed with a General Accounting Office legal opinion that states the cuts are illegal — is warning Mulvaney that if the White House goes ahead with the rescissions, it could sink the deal that he and Pelosi hammered out. “I request that you work within the Administration to stop this proposed rescission which GAO states is illegal, which violates the good faith of our budget negotiations, which important Republicans say is all-advised, and which overrides Congress’ move fundamental Constitutional power,” Pelosi said in her Aug. 16 letter.”

Anthony Scaramucci told Fox News that Democrats need to give Republicans supporting Trump the space they need to break from the president.

Said Scaramucci: “We recognize the president is a clear and present danger for the American society the American culture, there are many people inside the White House and inside the cabinet – I would ask the left, let’s create an off ramp for those people because when you’re trying to deprogram people from a cult you have to allow them to change their mind, allow them the space to change their mind.”

Fine, but there will be no policy changes. And the off ramp is this: if you do not want to be considered a racist or a Nazi, you will support and vote for the Democratic nominee.

“CNN’s Clarissa Ward says her story this week about Russian involvement in the Central African Republic came with a price: she was trailed during her reporting and made the subject of a 15-minute propaganda video denigrating her work,” the AP reports.

“Ward said she was shaken by the experience but it confirmed for her that the story made powerful people uncomfortable.”

Said Ward: “This was very clearly an attempt to discredit and intimidate us.”

“There’s an awful lot of really good Republicans out there. I get in trouble for saying that with Democrats, but the truth of the matter is, every time we ever got in trouble with our administration, remember who got sent up to Capitol Hill to fix it? Me. Because they know I respect the other team.”

— Joe Biden, quoted by The Hill, at a Massachusetts fundraiser. Sigh. Maybe all this Republican love from Joe is leading to this:

“Joe Biden raised $4.6 million online on his first day in the 2020 presidential race, surprising doubters who thought the former vice president couldn’t run a modern campaign. But since then Biden’s online fundraising has tumbled — looking more like flash-in-the-pan opponent Beto O’Rourke than top-tier rivals like Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren” Politico reports.

“More than 60% of the $13.2 million Biden has raised online came in the first week of his campaign.”

“While other top candidates spiked early and then gradually raised more money online as the 2020 campaign has carried on, Biden’s pattern is similar to O’Rourke, who roared into the race with millions raised in his first day but has trickled off since then.”

“It wasn’t until that moment that I truly understood how critical this moment is and the real consequence and cost of Donald Trump… There is a concerted, organized attack against immigrants, against people of color, against those who do not look like or pray like or love like the majority in this country.”

— Beto O’Rourke, in an interview with NBC News, on how the El Paso mass shooting changed his views of the stakes of the presidential race.

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) held a town hall meeting yesterday and a Reuters photograph shows that just two people showed up.

Former Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC), who is weighing a primary bid against President Trump, said that he would vote for the president over a Democrat even though he also said Trump doesn’t deserve reelection, The Hill reports.

Explained Sanford: “Everything is relative in politics.”

New York Times: “The analysis shows the dizzying climb of Pete Buttigieg (from 25 donations in a day to nearly $25 million in a quarter), the precipitous plunge of Beto O’Rourke (more donations in his first 48 hours than his next 2,500) and the steady metronome of Bernie Sanders (never less than 1,000 donations in a day). For some candidates, like Joseph R. Biden Jr., their strongest day for fund-raising was their first, and for others, like Elizabeth Warren, their best day came last, when she scored her first $1 million day on June 30.”

“Taken together, the donation data, which accounts for more than 90 percent of the money raised, paints a vivid portrait of a volatile primary’s ups and downs, a day-by-day, dollar-by-dollar reconstruction of the first six months of the 2020 Democratic primary, telling the story of who the front-runners are and how they emerged.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders invoked the Holocaust while vowing to go to war against white nationalism and racism if he wins the 2020 presidential election, The Hill reports.

Sad Sanders: “I’m Jewish, my family came from Poland. My father’s whole family was wiped out by Hitler and his white nationalism. Too many people have fought over the years, too many people have died against racism to let it resurface and flourish in America.”

He added: “We will go to war with nationalism and racism in every aspect of our lives.”

President Trump lashed out again at the “failing” New York Times on Twitter over what he called a “racism witch hunt.”

Said Trump: “‘Journalism’ has reached a new low in the history of our Country. It is nothing more than an evil propaganda machine for the Democrat Party. The reporting is so false, biased and evil that it has now become a very sick joke.”

He added: “With all that this Administration has accomplished, think what my Poll Numbers would be if we had an honest Media, which we do not.”

A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds 64% of Americans say they support free trade with foreign countries.

That represents an all-time high in the NBC/WSJ survey on this question, and it’s a 7-point increase from the last time it was asked in 2017.

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told Fox News that the Trump administration is “looking at” purchasing Greenland, even though Denmark has said it’s not for sale.

Said Kudlow: “It’s an interesting story. It’s developing. We’re looking at it. We don’t know.”

Beto O’Rourke visited a gun show in Little Rock, Arkansas, one day after releasing a gun control plan that included mandatory buybacks for assault weapons, CBS News reports.

Said O’Rourke: “If I’m president, you wouldn’t be able to buy weapons of war for $395. You wouldn’t be able to buy them at all.”

The NRA responded with a tweet: “If I’m president… Beto: Have you taken a look at the polls?”

To which O’Rourke responded: “Yeah. I’ve seen them. 70% of Americans support an assault weapons ban, including most Republicans.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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