MORNING MESSAGEThey’re Talking a Better Game, But Will the Democrats Fight?
While Democrats embark on a search for bold new ideas, Trump and the Republicans are boldly dismantling large chunks of the government, with massive cuts to assistance programs from Social Security to Medicaid. This dismantling of our social safety net is a declaration of war against the social contract in this country, and our shared belief that we look out for one another. Something clearly needs to change, and fast.
There’s a Hole in My Budget
Trump $1 trillion social cuts hit his own voters hardest. Politico: “Trump’s spending blueprint follows established conservative orthodoxy, cutting taxes on the wealthy, boosting defense spending and taking a hatchet to programs for the poor and disabled – potentially hurting many of the rural and low-income Americans that voted him into office… The president’s budget plan calls for more than $1 trillion in cuts to a wide range of social programs with millions of beneficiaries, from farm subsidies to federal student aid. That includes a $600 billion cut to Medicaid over 10 years, despite Trump’s repeated promises on the campaign trail not to cut the program. The budget also takes an ax to the federal food stamp program and Social Security Disability Insurance.”
GOP Budget relies on unrealistic expectations of economic growth. NYT: “The budget promises a deep tax cut for businesses and consumers that would not reduce federal revenue. An increase in military spending would be offset by trillions of dollars of unspecified or loosely sketched reductions in federal spending. And it all works because the budget assumes an acceleration of economic growth to an annual pace of 3 percent a year, much higher than the post-recession average of 2 percent.”
Supreme Court Votes for Voters
Supreme Court strikes down NC gerrymander. Mother Jones: “The Supreme Court on Monday struck down North Carolina’s congressional map, finding that the Republican legislature unconstitutionally used race in drawing district lines that reduced the voting power of minorities. In the 5-3 decision, with ultra-conservative Justice Clarence Thomas joining the four liberal justices in the majority, the court ruled that North Carolina unconstitutionally packed African American voters into two districts, in violation of the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause.”
Gorsuch dissents as Supreme Court upholds ban on big-money gifts to political parties. LA Times: “Justice Neil M. Gorsuch joined Clarence Thomas in dissent Monday when the Supreme Court rejected an appeal from a Republican Party lawyer seeking to strike down limits on big-money contributions to political parties… The dissent by Gorsuch is his first and most significant decision since joining the court last month, and it puts him squarely on the side of conservatives and Republican lawyers who believe that limits on political money are unconstitutional.”
Black voters say they’re already losing under Trump. Toronto Star: “The U.S. media narrative of the past year has been dominated by accounts of white Trump voters standing by their man no matter what they hear on the news. Their unyielding loyalty is important. But also noteworthy is Trump’s inability to earn even the fleeting honeymoon support of just about anyone who didn’t vote for him… in August, Trump offered a ‘guarantee’: he would so impress black people that he would get 95 per cent of their votes in 2020. In a poll this month, his approval rating among black people was 12 per cent.”
Kushner Companies squeeze lower-income renters nationwide. NYT: “Baltimore-area renters complain about a property owner who they say neglects their homes and often sues when they leave. Few of them know the landlord is the president’s son-in-law… the company and its equity partners bought 4,681 units of what are known in real estate jargon as ‘distress-ridden, Class B’ apartment complexes: units whose prices fell somewhere in the middle of the market, typically of a certain age and wear, whose owners were in financial difficulty. The properties were spread across 12 sites in Toledo, Ohio; Pittsburgh; and other Rust Belt cities still reeling from the Great Recession.”
Jared Kushner keeps real estate empire intact, mum on White House conflicts, benefits. WaPo: “Kushner, 36, who is emerging as a singularly powerful figure in the Trump White House, is keeping nearly 90 percent of his vast real estate holdings even after resigning from the family business and pledging a clear divide between his private interests and public duties. The value of his retained real estate interests is between $132 million and $407 million and could leave him in a position to financially benefit from his family’s business.”
More from OurFuture.org:
Trump Reality Show Distracts From Dismantling Medicaid. Mark Trahant: “This is what the Trump Show hides: The House’s American Health Care Act does much more than roll back the Affordable Care Act. It ends a Medicaid program that works. It’s the single most effective form of “government” insurance that secures health care options for 62.3 million Americans. To add a little perspective here: Medicare — supposedly untouchable in politics — insures 43.3 million seniors.”
How U.S. Firms Offshore Production, Then Pollution. Yue Maggie Zhou: “On Earth Day, Trump tweeted that ‘Economic growth enhances environmental protection. Jobs matter!’ His message was eerily similar to assertions in developing countries that environmental standards are less important than attracting jobs.”
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