Author: Michael McAuliff

Republicans Insist They’re Being Transparent With Their Hidden Health Care Bill

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― Senate Republicans, after holding closed-door meetings with President Donald Trump and senior administration officials on their still-secret health care bill, declared Tuesday that actually, they are being transparent. “Nobody’s hiding the ball here. You’re free to ask anybody anything,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told reporters, when asked about the charge from Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) that Republicans are “ashamed” of the Obamacare repeal bill they are writing. Although Republicans later backed down, just two hours before McConnell spoke they had tried to bar reporters from asking questions in public hallways...

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Trump And Congress Are About To Ruin America’s $220 Billion Economic Secret Weapon

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― When most people think of the U.S. Census Bureau, they probably don’t think of an agency that supercharges the profitability and efficiency of American businesses. Nor do they realize that one of the economy’s best secret weapons is facing its greatest crisis since James Madison and Thomas Jefferson created it in 1790. But then again, most people haven’t built a $4.5 billion fortune based on Census data, the way Jack and Laura Dangermond have. The Dangermonds, sweethearts since high school, had an epiphany about data while they were graduate students at Harvard in 1967, a time...

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Deputy Attorney General Knew Trump Wanted Comey Fired Before He Wrote Damning Memo

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein already knew the president was going to fire FBI Director James Comey before he wrote a memo recommending the director’s termination, senators said he told them in a private briefing Thursday. But the deputy attorney general refused to explain why he wrote the damning recommendation, knowing that Comey’s head was already on the chopping block, senators said. “He did acknowledge that he learned Comey would be removed prior to him writing his memo,” Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) told reporters after the briefing. “He knew that Comey was going to...

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Schumer Trolls Trump Tax Plan: You’re Doing It Wrong

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) had a tart message for President Donald Trump on his tax reform proposal Thursday: You’re doing it wrong. Schumer pulled out the old internet meme after Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said he couldn’t guarantee that the tax cuts would benefit the middle class. The one-page outline of the plan released Tuesday would definitely represent a large cut for the wealthiest Americans.  “The president’s outline yesterday is a direct assault on the middle class,” Schumer told reporters on Capitol Hill. “If on one piece of paper you can guarantee...

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McConnell Really, Really Wants Trump To Quit The Tweeting Already

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that he thinks President Donald Trump has been successful during his first 100 days. But he really, really wishes Trump would stop with the early morning tweetstorms. Trump has not been able to make much progress on any of his top campaign promises, including repealing the Affordable Care Act or building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. But McConnell said that Trump’s military actions abroad and his support of the GOP’s push to repeal some Obama administration regulations are examples of the president’s early successes. “I think the...

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Chuck Schumer Warns Trump Not To Ruin Budget Talks By Getting Involved

THE HUFFINGTON POST WASHINGTON ― When Congress returns from its spring break, it will have just four days to pass a spending plan for the rest of the year and thereby head off a government shutdown. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday that despite the looming April 28 deadline, President Donald Trump hasn’t been negotiating with Democrats on a deal. And he said that’s just fine ― because lawmakers on the Hill are on track to get it done and Trump should just leave those Art of the Deal impulses in a trophy case at Mar-a-Lago. Republican leaders...

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Mitch McConnell Can’t Explain How He’ll Pass Or Pay For The GOP Health Care Bill

WASHINGTON ― There were just a couple of small details Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) couldn’t provide Tuesday about the Republican proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act ― how to pay for it and how he can pass it. At least a half-dozen GOP senators have expressed doubts about the plan, and some Republican lawmakers and activists across the spectrum are already outright opposing the bill. The Senate usually requires 60 votes in order to pass a bill. To pass a replacement for Obamacare, the GOP would have to attract eight Democrats to join all of their Republicans. Asked how McConnell could satisfy his own members to try and move the legislation across the floor, the Senate leader instead chose to focus on just one complaint of some senators ― that the GOP bill doesn’t protect people who have health insurance, thanks to Obamacare’s expansion of Medicaid. McConnell said the GOP approach had buy-in from some Republican governors. “We’re optimistic this is the best way to go,” McConnell said. Similarly, when reporters asked about how the bill would be paid for if the Affordable Care Act funding was removed and some other taxes were not raised, McConnell demurred. “Well, It just got launched yesterday,” he said, never answering the question. “We’re going to have plenty of time to look at it,” McConnell said. “We’ll be looking at...

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If Trump Implodes, Republicans Have A Silver Lining In Mike Pence

  WASHINGTON ―For Republicans on Capitol Hill, Vice President Mike Pence was supposed to be the calm, steadying hand in the White House, the seasoned former Indiana governor and congressman who would be their ears and mouth in the neophyte Trump administration. Then Pence went on national television last month, before Donald Trump was even sworn in, to assure America that the man selected to be the national security adviser, Michael Flynn, never discussed sanctions against Russia with the Russian ambassador. It wasn’t true, of course. But Pence didn’t know that it was false, and that Flynn had discussed sanctions with the ambassador the very day the Obama administration leveled them in retaliation for Russia’s attempts to manipulate the U.S. election. Pence and his many GOP supporters didn’t find out he’d been misled until mid February, although other top officials in the White House were warned of Flynn’s dishonesty weeks earlier, in late January. Flynn was forced to resign. Now, imagine being a Republican on Capitol Hill, and learning that sequence of events involving the man the GOP establishment sees as a sort of safety blanket in the volatile administration. “Um,” said Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), pausing a full five seconds before offering an uncomfortable laugh and trying to answer whether he was reassured that Pence was not part of the deception, or concerned that the GOP’s voice in...

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