Trump to Dems: If You Want to ‘Win’ SCOTUS, ‘Don’t Obstruct… WIN ELECTIONS!’

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to tell Democrats that if they want to have a Supreme Court pick, they should “WIN ELECTIONS!”

“If the Democrats want to win Supreme Court and other Court picks, don’t Obstruct and Resist, but rather do it the good ol’ fashioned way, WIN ELECTIONS!,” Trump tweeted out.

Trump was, of course referring to the fact that Democrats have come forward in opposition of his new SCOTUS pick Brett Kavanaugh, a judge that may move SCOTUS sharply to the right.

“This will not happen without a fight,” New Jersey Sen. Cory Bookersaid to a rally crowd outside SCOTUS. “We who believe that a woman has the right to make her own medical decisions, we now must fight! Don’t tell me this battle is already lost — I don’t believe that.”

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand also tweeted out this:

However, Trump’s latest tweet ignores the very recent history of the case of one-time SCOTUS nominee Merrick Garland. Garland was nominated by Obama for the nation’s top court, however, his bid for the Supreme Court was quickly steamrolled by Sen. Mitch McConnelland his other cronies.

[Mediaite]

Reality

We did win elections, then Mitch stole a Supreme Court* pick through historic obstruction. We expect the Democrats to treat Kavanaugh as well as the GOP treated Merrick Garland.

U.S. Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution Stuns World Health Officials

A resolution to encourage breast-feeding was expected to be approved quickly and easily by the hundreds of government delegates who gathered this spring in Geneva for the United Nations-affiliated World Health Assembly.

Based on decades of research, the resolution says that mother’s milk is healthiest for children and countries should strive to limit the inaccurate or misleading marketing of breast milk substitutes.

Then the United States delegation, embracing the interests of infant formula manufacturers, upended the deliberations.

American officials sought to water down the resolution by removing language that called on governments to “protect, promote and support breast-feeding” and another passage that called on policymakers to restrict the promotion of food products that many experts say can have deleterious effects on young children.

When that failed, they turned to threats, according to diplomats and government officials who took part in the discussions. Ecuador, which had planned to introduce the measure, was the first to find itself in the cross hairs.

The Americans were blunt: If Ecuador refused to drop the resolution, Washington would unleash punishing trade measures and withdraw crucial military aid. The Ecuadorean government quickly acquiesced.

The showdown over the issue was recounted by more than a dozen participants from several countries, many of whom requested anonymity because they feared retaliation from the United States.

Health advocates scrambled to find another sponsor for the resolution, but at least a dozen countries, most of them poor nations in Africa and Latin America, backed off, citing fears of retaliation, according to officials from Uruguay, Mexico and the United States.

“We were astonished, appalled and also saddened,” said Patti Rundall, the policy director of the British advocacy group Baby Milk Action, who has attended meetings of the assembly, the decision-making body of the World Health Organization, since the late 1980s.

“What happened was tantamount to blackmail, with the U.S. holding the world hostage and trying to overturn nearly 40 years of consensus on best way to protect infant and young child health,” she said.

In the end, the Americans’ efforts were mostly unsuccessful. It was the Russians who ultimately stepped in to introduce the measure — and the Americans did not threaten them.

The State Department declined to respond to questions, saying it could not discuss private diplomatic conversations. The Department of Health and Human Services, the lead agency in the effort to modify the resolution, explained the decision to contest the resolution’s wording but said H.H.S. was not involved in threatening Ecuador.

“The resolution as originally drafted placed unnecessary hurdles for mothers seeking to provide nutrition to their children,” an H.H.S. spokesman said in an email. “We recognize not all women are able to breast-feed for a variety of reasons. These women should have the choice and access to alternatives for the health of their babies, and not be stigmatized for the ways in which they are able to do so.” The spokesman asked to remain anonymous in order to speak more freely.

Although lobbyists from the baby food industry attended the meetings in Geneva, health advocates said they saw no direct evidence that they played a role in Washington’s strong-arm tactics. The $70 billion industry, which is dominated by a handful of American and European companies, has seen sales flatten in wealthy countries in recent years, as more women embrace breast-feeding. Overall, global sales are expected to rise by 4 percent in 2018, according to Euromonitor, with most of that growth occurring in developing nations.

The intensity of the administration’s opposition to the breast-feeding resolution stunned public health officials and foreign diplomats, who described it as a marked contrast to the Obama administration, which largely supported W.H.O.’s longstanding policy of encouraging breast-feeding.

During the deliberations, some American delegates even suggested the United States might cut its contribution the W.H.O., several negotiators said.

Washington is the single largest contributor to the health organization, providing $845 million, or roughly 15 percent of its budget, last year.

The confrontation was the latest example of the Trump administration siding with corporate interests on numerous public health and environmental issues.

In talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, the Americans have been pushing for language that would limit the ability of Canada, Mexico and the United States to put warning labels on junk food and sugary beverages, according to a draft of the proposal reviewed by The New York Times.

During the same Geneva meeting where the breast-feeding resolution was debated, the United States succeeded in removing statements supporting soda taxes from a document that advises countries grappling with soaring rates of obesity.

The Americans also sought, unsuccessfully, to thwart a W.H.O. effort aimed at helping poor countries obtain access to lifesaving medicines. Washington, supporting the pharmaceutical industry, has long resisted calls to modify patent laws as a way of increasing drug availability in the developing world, but health advocates say the Trump administration has ratcheted up its opposition to such efforts.

[The New York Times]

Trump defends tweets, says he prides himself on his writing, misspells ‘pore’

President Trump on Tuesday defended his use of Twitter and his writing style in a tweet that slammed reporters for pointing out his grammatical and spelling errors.

“After having written many best selling books, and somewhat priding myself on my ability to write, it should be noted that the Fake News constantly likes to pour [sic] over my tweets looking for a mistake,” he wrote. “I capitalize certain words only for emphasis, not [because] they should be capitalized!”

The president would later correct the mistake, issuing a second tweet with the corrected spelling around the time he was speaking at a rally in West Virginia with the state’s Republican governor, Jim Justice.

Trump, who co-authored books about his business empire and real estate tactics before being elected president, is most famously known for his 1987 book “Trump: The Art of the Deal,” co-written by journalist Tony Schwartz.

Since taking office, Trump has faced criticism from Democrats and even some allies for his frequent use of Twitter and for using the platform to announce policies such as his ban on transgender people joining the military.

Trump, however, has refused to abandon his Twitter account, crediting it for allowing him to issue his messages without the filter of the media.

[The Hill]

Trump calls Rep. Joe Crowley a ‘slovenly man’ who ‘got his ass kicked’

President Donald Trump mocked the No. 4 House Democrat, Rep. Joe Crowley of New York, for losing in a primary to 28-year-old first-time candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Tuesday.

“A slovenly man named Joe Crowley got his ass kicked by a young woman who had a lot of energy,” Trump said. “She had a lot of energy. I guess he didn’t see it. They couldn’t find him.”

Trump was speaking at a campaign rally in Fargo, North Dakota, Wednesday night. He was promoting Rep. Kevin Cramer, a North Dakota Republican, in his challenge to Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp.

The President also begged Democrats to keep Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California on as House minority leader and he highlighted Rep. Maxine Waters of California, who recently urged activists to publicly confront Trump officials.

“Please keep Maxine Waters on the air as your face and your mouthpiece for the Democrat party,” Trump said.

[CNN]

Trump Warns Maxine Waters Over Call to Harass Administration Officials

President Donald Trump on Monday warned Rep. Maxine Waters to “be careful what you wish for,” two days after the California congresswoman urged supporters to harass members of the Trump administration in public places.

Referring to Ms. Waters as an “extraordinarily low IQ person,” Mr. Trump tweeted Monday: “She has just called for harm to supporters, of which there are many, of the Make America Great Again movement.” He added: “Be careful what you wish for Max!”

At an event in Los Angeles Saturday, Ms. Waters sought to rally the crowd against Trump administration officials. “If you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd,” she said. “And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”

On Friday night, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders was asked by the owner of the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Va., to leave. Tweeting about the incident Saturday, Ms. Sanders said she was asked to leave “because I work for @POTUS” and that she “politely left.”

“Her actions say far more about her than about me,” she added. “I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so.” She also addressed the matter at Monday’s press briefing, saying: “We are allowed to disagree, but we should be able to do so freely and without fear of harm.”

Mr. Trump defended his press secretary on Monday, calling her a “fine person.”

Last week, protesters chanted “Shame!” at Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen while she was dining at a Mexican restaurant, hours after she defended the White House’s zero-tolerance policy that resulted in the separation of thousands of immigrant children from their families at a briefing with reporters.

[Wall Street Journal]

Reality

The same day his press secretary called for civility from his opponents, Donald Trump insulted, then threatened Congresswoman Maxine Waters with physical harm.
Trump also completely misrepresented Ms. Waters’ comments, who never called to harm Trumpers.

Trump to Jimmy Fallon: ‘Be a man.’ Late-night host answers with donation to help migrants.

President Donald Trump is telling “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon to “be a man” and stop “whimpering” about the personal anguish he felt over the backlash he received after messing up Trump’s hair during a 2016 campaign appearance on the late-night talk show.

Fallon recently told The Hollywood Reporterthat he “made a mistake” on the Sept. 15, 2016, episode and would do it differently.

During that interview with the presidential candidate, Fallon thanked Trump “for giving us the material that we are doing” and said he has been “amazing to follow” because “you say some shocking things that I cannot even believe.”

“But I’m trying not to anyway,” Trump replied.

Fallon’s latest comments, however, didn’t appear to sit well with Trump.

The president tweeted Sunday:

Fallon responded on Twitter with a nod to the plight of young immigrants caught up in administration policies.

The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, or RAICES, is the largest immigration legal services provider in Texas. The organization is on the front lines of the immigration battle in Texas.

[NBC News]

Update

Jimmy Fallon rebutted Trump’s claim that he called him:

“And he said he called and said, ‘Monster ratings.’ First of all, I’ve never called this human in my life. I don’t have his number, I don’t want his number,” Fallon continued. “I’ve never said ‘monster ratings.’ I don’t know what he’s talking about. By the way, Donald, I don’t know if you’ve seen my ratings the past two years, you didn’t help my ratings. But, really, thanks a lot. Thanks for nothing.”

 

Trump reportedly tossed a Starburst toward Merkel during G7 summit

President Trump reportedly tossed a Starburst toward German Chancellor Angela Merkel during the G7 summit in Canada.

The candy diplomacy took place during a tense exchange that was caught in a memorable image of Trump with arms folded while surrounded by European allies, according to CBS News.

“Trump was sitting there with his arms crossed, clearly not liking the fact that they were ganging up on him,” Eurasia Group President Ian Bremmer said on “CBS This Morning.”

“He eventually agreed and said OK, he’ll sign it. And at that point, he stood up, put his hand in his pocket, his suit jacket pocket, and he took two Starburst candies out, threw them on the table and said to Merkel, ‘Here, Angela. Don’t say I never give you anything.’”

The Starburst outburst took place just before Trump boarded a plane to Singapore and proceeded to berate allies, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

[New York Post]

Trump’s Mark Sanford diss draws boos at closed-door GOP meeting

President Trump’s meeting with House Republicans to discuss immigration legislation briefly went awry Tuesday after the president mocked Rep. Mark Sanford over a primary election loss.

Two sources in the meeting room told The Associated Press that Trump joked: “I want to congratulate Mark on a great race.”

A senior House Republican who is a Trump supporter told Fox News that the president’s comment was “unnecessary” and “poor form.” Another senior GOP lawmaker called it a “low blow.”

Another GOP member told Fox News the room got “pretty quiet” after the remark and some attendees booed in a low tone of voice.

Sanford, a former South Carolina governor and frequent Trump critic, was defeated by state Rep. Katie Arrington in the June 12 primary. Hours before the polls closed, Trump endorsed Arrington on Twitter and joked that Sanford was “better off in Argentina” — a reference to a sex scandal that overshadowed Sanford’s tenure as governor.

Sanford blamed his defeat on Trump, saying support for the president is becoming a litmus test in GOP primaries.

Two sources in the meeting room told The Associated Press that Trump joked: “I want to congratulate Mark on a great race.”

A senior House Republican who is a Trump supporter told Fox News that the president’s comment was “unnecessary” and “poor form.” Another senior GOP lawmaker called it a “low blow.”

Another GOP member told Fox News the room got “pretty quiet” after the remark and some attendees booed in a low tone of voice.

Sanford, a former South Carolina governor and frequent Trump critic, was defeated by state Rep. Katie Arrington in the June 12 primary. Hours before the polls closed, Trump endorsed Arrington on Twitter and joked that Sanford was “better off in Argentina” — a reference to a sex scandal that overshadowed Sanford’s tenure as governor.

Sanford blamed his defeat on Trump, saying support for the president is becoming a litmus test in GOP primaries.

[Fox News]

Trump Calls Female Reporter ‘So Obnoxious,’ Tells Her to Be Quiet At Least 5 Times

On Friday, President Donald Trump told a female reporter to be quiet at least five times. He also called her “so obnoxious.”

It all happened during Trump’s whirlwind media blitz on Friday and with plenty of cameras nearby was all caught on tape.

Video of the incident shows Trump singling out CBS News correspondent Weijia Jiang and telling her to be quiet at least five times, according to Jiang’s account.

Then, when she pressed POTUS on not calling out North Korea’s human rights violations he put his hand out towards her face and turned his head away.

Then he told another reporter,” she’s so obnoxious.”

Trump then threw in another scolding “quiet” for good measure.

Jiang talked about what happened on Twitter, giving it a somewhat positive spin, writing, Trump “told me I was obnoxious and to be quiet at least 5x, but to his credit he did answer plenty of our questions.”

The White House, which has been increasingly adversarial towards the press, has not commented on the incident or otherwise remarked on Trump’s behavior towards Jiang.

[Mediaite]

Trump demands credit for getting along with Kim Jong Un

President Donald Trump continued to defend his budding relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Monday, demanding credit for his role in making “initial steps toward a deal” by establishing a personal rapport with the young dictator during last week’s summit in Singapore.

“If President Obama (who got nowhere with North Korea and would have had to go to war with many millions of people being killed) had gotten along with North Korea and made the initial steps toward a deal that I have, the Fake News would have named him a national hero!” Trump tweeted.

Amid lingering skepticism over North Korea’s commitment to complete denuclearization in the wake of the Singapore summit, Trump has aggressively pushed the idea that Kim is sincere in his intentions and that the two leaders were able to develop a unique chemistry.

It’s a conviction South Korean officials share. South Korean Vice Foreign Minister Lim Sung-Nam said Monday in Washington that any diplomatic progress should be credited to the connection that Trump and Kim established through an “unprecedented top-down approach” to negotiations.

“The actors for this top-level diplomacy are completely different leaders as compared to the past,” Lim told an audience at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “Moreover, the personal chemistry between them has been unique as well.”

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, asked about Trump’s praise for Kim, suggested the President is as willing to use carrots as he would be — if necessary — to use sticks. “If you try to play Trump or back out, there’s going to be a war and nobody wants war,” Graham told CNN.

Trump’s claims to a cozy relationship may reflect an effort to butter-up Kim “to make it easier to get a better deal,” Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio told CNN last week.

Indeed, the administration hopes that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo can build on that rapport to create substantial movement toward denuclearization.

But sources have told CNN that there is nothing to suggest that North Korea has begun destroying its missile launch sites, despite Trump’s repeated claims to the contrary and his declaration last week that the country is no longer a nuclear threat.

Harry Harris, Trump’s nominee to be ambassador to South Korea, said last week that North Korea continues to be a nuclear threat and that major military exercises should be paused to give Kim a chance to prove whether he is “serious.”

Trump announced in Singapore that the US would suspend “war games” with South Korea and Japan, taking Seoul, Tokyo, lawmakers and parts of the US military by surprise.

Additionally, several US defense officials said that, so far, there is no indication that Kim has made good on his promise to return the remains of prisoners of war and soldiers declared missing in action during the Korean War — something Trump has repeatedly said the two leaders agreed upon during their meeting.

These officials also cautioned that a lengthy DNA verification process would be needed when and if any remains are returned to the US.

In South Korea, however, the prism is different. Discussions center less on Trump’s achievements or lack of them, or his failures to live up to his own word, and more on the possibilities his summit opened up — in particular his new relationship with Kim.

While critics continue to suggest that Trump failed to secure concrete concessions from North Korea — including guarantees related to verifiable irreversible denuclearization and ending human rights abuses — South Korean officials have publicly credited the US President for facilitating the signing of the Panmunjom declaration and the Singapore statement, despite questions over specific terms.

“President Trump has made an unprecedented strategic decision to meet face-to-face with the leader of the DPRK,” Vice Foreign Minister Lim said, noting that Trump accounted for cultural considerations in dealing with Kim by showing him “due respect” and treating “him as a leader of a state.”

[CNN]

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