The Trump Intelligence, Killing Obamacare
Thursday, January 5, 2017
Vol. 6, No. 5
The Intel: President-elect Trump is thinking about limiting the power of the Director of National Intelligence and doing some reorganizing, particularly at the CIA, according to some reports.
In the meantime, Trump is taking sides with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange against the US intelligence agencies that will be reporting to him in just over two weeks. Answering questions about hacked Democratic Party and Clinton campaign emails WikiLeaks released last year, Assange told Fox News host Sean Hannity, “Our source is not the Russian government. It is not state parties.”
Trump chimed in over Twitter, “Julian Assange said ‘a 14 year old could have hacked Podesta’ – why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give him the info!”
Of course, there’s a chance … just a chance … that if the Russians did it, they may have passed the emails through middle parties. Trump gets his intelligence briefing on Russian hacking tomorrow.
Unhealthy: Vice President-elect Mike Pence went to Capitol Hill yesterday and told legislators that President Trump will begin killing Obamacare with executive orders.
Both Pence and President Obama were on Hill yesterday to spur the fight over health care — on opposite sides, of course. Obama met with Democratic leaders to brainstorm ways to save the best of Obamacare.
Pence told reporters later, “The first order of business is to keep our promise to repeal Obamacare and replace it with the kind of health care reform that will lower the cost of health insurance without growing the size of government.”
Republicans say they are working on a replacement healthcare bill. But, six years after Obamacare became law, and after 60 unsuccessful votes to repeal it, they have yet to offer a fix, a patch, or a comprehensive replacement for the thing they hate so much.
Talking Points Memo reports that one Republican House member rose in a closed-door meeting and said, “You lose all leverage once you repeal this thing. There will be people on the left who will never help you replace it and there will be people on the right who aren’t going to help you either. We will own this thing and there will be consequences.”
Death Be Not Proud: Convicted Charleston, SC mass killer Dylann Roof yesterday told the jury considering his sentence that there is nothing psychologically wrong with him. Representing himself in court, Roof said, “The point is that I’m not going to lie to you, not by myself or through somebody else.”
Roof faces a possible death sentence for killing nine black parishioners in an historic Charleston, SC, church in June 2015.
Prosecutor Nathan Williams read out loud from Roof’s jailhouse journal in which he wrote, “I would like to make it crystal clear I do not regret what I did. I am not sorry. I have not shed a tear for the innocent people I killed.”
In a journal Roof kept before the killings and his arrest, he wrote, “I want state that I am morally opposed to psychology. It is a Jewish invention, and does nothing but invent diseases and tell people they have problems when they dont.”
Istanbul: Turkish authorities say they have identified the gunman who killed 39 people in a nightclub on New Year’s Eve. They released no other details.
Chill Out: It’s eight below zero in Billings, Mt. this morning. Minneapolis, -5; Chiacago, 7; Buffalo, 17; Burlington, Vt., 24; Bangor, Me., 24.
Nation: A Long Island Rail Road commuter train derailed at the Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn yesterday morning, injuring 100 people. The train failed to slow down on time and hit a bumper block before piercing a station wall, sending passengers and their bags flying. — Americans bought 17.55 million cars in 2016, a record. With cheap gas, buyers are moving back to big SUVs and pickup trucks. The car companies are cutting back on smaller passenger cars. — Macy’s is shutting 68 stores and trimming 10,000 jobs after poor holiday sales. The reason sales were poor; you couldn’t find a salesperson. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposes to spend $10 billion bringing JFK airport up to date. Expect delays.