Trump just tweeted a video of Democrats looking sad set to REM’s “Everybody Hurts.” Really.

After declaring a national emergency to get his wall at the US-Mexico border on Friday, President Donald Trump took a little time on Twitter to mock his Democratic critics — and Mitt Romney.

The tweet features a video of Trump’s State of the Union last week, with REM’s “Everybody Hurts” playing in the background, and shots of various Democrats — Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and more — looking sad while they watched Trump speak. There is also a cut to Romney, who’s at times critical of Trump.

The video is credited to @Carpedonktum, a pro-Trump meme-maker — making it even weirder, since presidents usually don’t promote random Twitter accounts’ content.

Sure, this is funny — if, say, The Daily Showor Stephen Colbert does something like it.

But for the president to tweet it, it’s alarming. In the past, presidents have tried to keep at least a bit of an appearance that they respected and were willing to work with the other party. With his tweet, Trump is doing nothing of the sort; he’s just mocking his Democratic rivals.

It’s another example of how strong negative partisanship — or, in conservative parlance, “owning the libs” — has become. On both sides of the aisle, people love dunking on the other team. As American politics becomes more and more polarized, and Republicans in particular move in more extreme directions, this is becoming a bigger problem — one that’s fracturing both sides’ ability to work together to pass legislation and solve problems.

This even showed up in Trump’s State of the Union speech. Peter Baker reported for the New York Times that the initial speech was supposed to promote a more unified, bipartisan message, but Trump tried to edit it to make it meaner to Democrats — because, Baker wrote, Trump was still “stung by his failure to use a partial government shutdown to pressure Congress into paying for his border wall.”

And we’ve seen it in governments’ inability to really function in recent years, with various threats that the debt ceiling won’t be increased and multiple government shutdowns.

All of that may lead to some funny, unexpected tweets. But those tweets are a symptom of America’s broken politics.

[Vox]

Trump calls on Omar to resign over remarks condemned as anti-Semitic

President Trump on Tuesday called on Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) to resign for comments on Israel that were criticized as anti-Semitic.

“I think she should either resign from Congress or she should certainly resign from the House Foreign Affairs Committee,” Trump said of the freshman lawmaker.

Omar apologized on Monday for suggesting that U.S. support for a Jewish state is the result of money flowing from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), an influential pro-Israel lobbying group.

The comments were quickly condemned by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and other Democratic leaders. But House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told Roll Call that Omar would not be stripped of her committee assignments. 

The president said Omar’s comments are “deep seated in her heart” and called her apology “lame.”

Trump was similarly critical of Omar on Mondaynight but had stopped short of calling on the congresswoman to step down.

“I think she should be ashamed of herself,” Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One.  

Asked at the time what an appropriate response would be for Omar, Trump said, “She knows what to say.”

Omar prompted criticism from members of both major parties on Sunday evening when she retweeted journalist Glenn Greenwald’s response to a story about House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) promising “action” toward the Minnesota lawmaker and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) over their alleged anti-Semitism.

She captioned that retweet with the message, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby,” referring to money.

Conservatives have touted GOP leaders’ decision last month to strip Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) of his committee assignments after he questioned why the term “white supremacist” is offensive, contrasting it to Democrats’ response to Omar.

But some Democrats have called Republicans’ punishment for King too little too late, pointing out that the Iowa lawmaker has made inflammatory comments about Hispanic immigrants for years.

[The Hill]

Trump again confuses climate with weather in tweet attacking Amy Klobuchar

Donald Trump attacked Amy Klobuchar on Sunday, in a tweet that appeared to demonstrate a lack of understanding about climate change.

The Democratic senator had announced that she was running for the presidency earlier that day, in a speech delivered as snow fell around her in Minneapolis

“As your president, I will look you in the eye. I will tell you what I think. I will focus on getting things done. That’s what I’ve done my whole life,” she told a crowd of people gathered at a park along the Mississippi River.

The Minnesota senator added that on her first day as president she would have the US rejoin the Paris climate agreement, which Mr Trump withdrew the country from in 2017.

“Well, it happened again,” the president wrote on Twitter.

“Amy Klobuchar announced that she is running for President, talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures.”

“Bad timing. By the end of her speech she looked like a Snowman(woman)!”

Conflating weather and climate change is a common error and Nasa has a webpage dedicated to distingushing the two.

“The difference between weather and climate is a measure of time,” it states.

“Weather is what conditions of the atmosphere are over a short period of time, and climate is how the atmosphere ‘behaves’ over relatively long periods of time.”

Mr Trump has a long history of spreading incorrect information about climate change, despite the wealth of information available.

His tweet came just three weeks after another one in which he discussed forecasts of heavy snow.

“Wouldn’t be bad to have a little of that good old fashioned Global Warming right now,” the 72-year-old said. 

Mr Trump also once claimed that climate change was a Chinese hoax, invented to hurt US exports.

Ms Klobuchar responded to his mockery on Twitter by saying that science supported her policies.

“Science is on my side,” she wrote, addressing the president. 

[The Independent]

Trump Threatens Wall Coming ‘One Way or the Other’ as Lawmakers Talk Read Newsmax: Trump Says Wall Coming ‘One Way or the Other’ as Lawmakers Talk

Congressional negotiators dug in for a weekend of talks on a security plan that includes some sort of barrier on the U.S.-Mexican border, hoping to complete a deal to avert another government shutdown that’s also acceptable to President Donald Trump.

Trump was back in the fray late Saturday afternoon, indicating in a tweet that if Democrats didn’t give him all the wall money he’s demanded, he may use executive action to build it. Democrats have warned such action would face court challenges, and some Republicans have suggested it’s an option best avoided.

Negotiators on Saturday were homing in on a proposal with border barrier funding of between $1.3 billion and $2 billion, said a person familiar with the talks. That’s far lower than the $5.7 billion that Trump had been demanding.

Representative Steven Palazzo, a Republican member of the House-Senate panel holding the talks, said Friday that he expects a deal “before the end of the weekend” that could be finalized on Monday. The Mississippi lawmaker said some key details are still under negotiation, including the amount of money for barriers on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby are scheduled to appear on political talk shows on Sunday morning, which could provide additional clarity on how talks are progressing.

Another Republican on the negotiating panel, Representative Chuck Fleischmann of Tennessee, said the party wants as much barrier funding as possible, and he hopes that the final amount is above $2 billion. House Appropriations Committee spokesman Evan Hollander said in a statement that Democrats want the figure to be less than $2 billion.

[Newsmax]

Trump Mocks Warren With Reference to Trail of Tears, Which Killed Thousands

When Senator Elizabeth Warren formally announced her 2020 presidential bid this weekend, President Trump responded with a familiar line of attack.

He mocked Ms. Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, for her claims to Native American ancestry, again calling her by the slur “Pocahontas.” Mr. Trump then appeared to refer to the Trail of Tears, the infamously cruel forced relocation of Native Americans in the 19th century that caused thousands of deaths.

“Will she run as our first Native American presidential candidate, or has she decided that after 32 years, this is not playing so well anymore?” Mr. Trump tweeted. “See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz!”

(Ms. Warren had recently apologized to the Cherokee Nation for taking a DNA test to prove her ancestry.)

(Ms. Warren had recently apologized to the Cherokee Nation for taking a DNA test to prove her ancestry.)

The comments drew immediate blowback on social media, with accusations that the president was making light of one of the worst tragedies Native Americans have experienced. Mr. Trump previously invoked the Wounded Knee massacre, one of the deadliest attacks on Native American people by the United States military, in another jab at Ms. Warren.

“He actually is condoning a narrative that supports a genocide and a forced removal,” said Betsy Theobald Richards, who works on changing cultural narratives for the Opportunity Agenda, a social justice organization.

Ms. Richards, a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, said most people have been taught only the “dominant narrative” of history in the United States, which she said has long devalued the experiences and voices of Native American people.

“People don’t really realize these are real people who live among you,” she said. “These are their ancestors that are survivors, or carry on the memory of the people who were massacred or removed.”

For those who need a refresher, here is a brief history of the Trail of Tears:

In the 1830s, federal and state officials forced thousands of Native Americans from their land in the southeastern United States, including Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee. The forced relocation affected thousands of Cherokees, as well as the Creek, Chickasaw, Choctaw and Seminole tribes, among others.

The Native people were forced out of their homes and put in internment camps before they were pushed westward to designated Indian Territory, in present-day Oklahoma, according to the Trail of Tears Association, a nonprofit that works to preserve the historic trail and promote awareness.

Some 15,000 Native people died during the journey from exposure, malnutrition, exhaustion and disease, including about 4,000 Cherokees.

“It’s a terribly tragic event in Cherokee history and looms large,” said Jace Weaver, the director of the Institute of Native American Studies at the University of Georgia, who has studied the Cherokee removal.

[The New York Times]

Trump: Adam Schiff is a ‘Political Hack’ with ‘No Basis’ In Sharing House Intel Transcripts With Mueller

President Donald Trump blasted Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) during a cabinet room press spray, calling the Californian Democrat a “political hack.”

On Wednesday morning Schiff announced plans to share more than 50 transcripts of committee interviews with the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller as he continues to investigate possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian efforts to influence the general election of 2016.

Schiff told reporters what he plans to share, which “includes transcripts that the special counsel and Justice Department have not had access to and a great many that they have, but have not been allowed to use for particular purposes including in prosecutions for false statements, obstruction, or perjury or any other like offense.”

When Trump was asked to comment on this recent development news that the House Intelligence Committee, of which Schiff is chair, voted on Wednesday to provide transcripts from dozens of witness interviews to the office of the Special Counsel,  the commander in chief replied “He has no basis to do that, he’s just a political hack who’s trying to build a name for himself.”

Trump continued “no other politician has to go through that…it’s called presidential harassment.”

Lawmakers approved of the release in a bipartisan voice vote in a closed-door meeting according to Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX.)

[Mediaite]

Trump Blasts ‘Da Nang Dick’ Blumenthal After Senator Talks Mueller Bill and Don Jr’s Testimony on MSNBC

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D- CT) is working with Senator Chuck Grassley(R- IA) to push a Special Counsel Transparency Act to ensure that any the work of special counsel, including Robert Mueller, would be “made available to both Congress and the public.”

Blumenthal joined Rachel Maddowtonight to talk about it and he started off by praising Grassley for his commitment to transparency.

But after talking about the bill, Maddow brought up the issue of people lying to Congress––given the indictment against Roger Stone––and asked, “Can you tell us if other Judiciary Committee witnesses have had their testimony sent over to Mueller, sent to the special counsel’s office as yet?”

Blumenthal said this in response:

“Very simply, Rachel, I’m barred from saying whether any testimony has been conveyed to the special counsel, but I can tell you this much. I was in the room when a great many of these witnesses appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee behind closed doors. I think many of them should be called back to testify in public and I hope that will be true of other congressional committees as well, because behind closed doors, there arose––in my mind very clearly––questions, serious issues concerning their truthfulness and that issue pertained particularly to Donald Trump Jr. in a number of his contentions before our committee. So I think this common thread of lying to Congress and particularly to congressional committees may ensnare a number of other potential targets in the special counsel’s investigation and become a matter of criminal action.”

[Mediaite]

Trump Claims Again ‘Most of the Workers Not Getting Paid Are Democrats’’ But Says He Doesn’t Care

President Donald Trump this morning went on another tweetstorm about the government shutdown, going off on Democrats and the media.

But he also tweeted again this morning that most federal workers not getting paid are Democrats––yesterday he claimed many federal workers not being paid would consider his fight for border security more important––and added this time that he doesn’t care:

[Mediaite]

Trump says he is considering using emergency powers to build wall

President Donald Trump said Friday that he is considering using emergency powers which would allow him to use military funding to build a wall on the US-Mexico border, saying “I can do it if I want.”

“We can call a national emergency because of the security … I haven’t done it. I may do it but we can call a national emergency and build it very quickly,” he said during remarks in the White House Rose Garden.

Trump has repeatedly talked about declaring a national emergency in recent months but hasn’t followed through yet, allowing the government to shut down over funding the wall rather than declaring one.

On Friday, he seemed to indicate that he would prefer to secure the funding through Congress.

“If we can do it through the negotiating process, we’re giving that a shot,” he said.

However, Trump also said he believes he doesn’t need congressional approval to build the wall.

“Absolutely,” Trump replied. “We can call a national emergency. I haven’t done it. I may do it. I may do it. We can call a national emergency and build it very quickly. It’s another way of doing it.”

Asked if that was a threat to Democrats, Trump said: “I never threaten anybody, but I am allowed to do it — call a national emergency.”

“If we can do it through the negotiating process, we’re giving that a shot,” he said.

In December, defense officials from the Homeland Defense section of the Pentagon visited the White House for a meeting to discuss the possibility, three US officials have told CNN.

The meeting, which included officials from the Department of Homeland Security, focused on options that would allow Trump to build the border wall by tapping into military funding if he was unable to secure the money he wants from Congress.

[CNN]

Trump Rants That He Can’t Be Impeached After Winning ‘The Greatest Election Of All Time’

Perhaps in reaction to a handful of Democrats calling for impeachment on day one of the new Congressional term, President Donald Trump on Friday issued a tweet in response, saying that he shouldn’t be impeached based on his election win two years ago.

In his tweet, Trump also alluded to himself being a “great” president, who has had plenty of accomplishments in the first half of his term. He also brought up collusion with Russia, which some have accused him of doing after several reports and leaks about the Russia investigation have come forward over the past year and a half.

“How do you impeach a president who has won perhaps the greatest election of all time, done nothing wrong (no Collusion with Russia, it was the Dems that Colluded), had the most successful first two years of any president, and is the most popular Republican in party history 93%?” Trump wrote in his tweet.

Trump won the Electoral College in 2016 but lost the popular vote by around 3 million votes nationally to his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton. Only four other presidents have won the election without securing a plurality of votes, according to the Independent, which reported on the topic back in 2016 after Trump’s win.

Some Democrats have suggested they want to start an impeachment process against the president right away. Rep. Brad Sherman, a Democrat from California, said he planned on submitting articles of impeachment on Thursday, according to reporting from Fox News. Democratic leadership, however, has urged lawmakers to set a higher bar for impeachment, warning that there isn’t ample cause as yet to push for Trump’s removal through the legal mechanism, per reporting from the Hill.

Polling on the issue demonstrates some Americans are receptive to the idea while others are not. A CAPS/Harris poll released this past week found that 39 percent of respondents wanted the impeachment process to begin, while 20 percent thought that as of right now, a censure of the president by Congress would be more appropriate. A slim majority, 51 percent, said that impeachment shouldn’t begin at this time, according to reporting from AOL.

Impeachment against a president requires a majority of the House of Representatives to agree to do so. Democrats definitely have a majority at this time, but with the Russia investigation still ongoing, the evidence for (or against) impeachment is not yet public and could be a political miscalculation if it’s done too soon. While the House is in charge of impeachment, the Senate is in charge of deciding if the charges of impeachment warrant removal of a president, requiring two-thirds of that legislative body of Congress to vote in the affirmative in order to do so.

Calls for the impeachment of a sitting president by an opposing political party isn’t uncommon in these modern times. Former Democratic President Barack Obama, for example, faced a barrage of calls for impeachment after his first two years in office, and beyond, according to reporting from theAtlantic.

[Inquisitir]

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