Sunday, August 4, 2019

Two Unimaginable Tragedies

The El Paso shootings:

At least 20 dead; alleged killer alive and reportedly being questioned; apparent manifesto will be debated and dissected.

Latest national coverage: link

El Paso Times.

Live local TV coverage here.

The Dayton shootings:

At least 9 dead; alleged murderer reportedly killed by law enforcement; motive at this writing unknown.

Latest national coverage: link

Dayton Daily News.

Live local TV coverage here and here.


**********************
The Washington Post’s Dan Balz on the “summer of discontent” for Democrats and Republicans

“The physics of politics generally mean that when one party is up, the other is down; when one is confident, the other is nervous or pessimistic. In the age of Trump, those rules, like so many others, don’t apply. Everyone seems to have something to worry about, which means Republicans are also suffering this summer.”

My take: Both parties have a lot of problems, to be sure.  August is not a great time to solve them.  If Democrats could get on the same page about what their problems are and how to solve them, they would mitigate one of the Republicans’ current advantages. Another Washington Post story, however, makes it pretty clear that that is not going to happen.  The party’s divides are real.

The Wall Street Journal: Trump considers September rollout of health care proposals

“Elements of the plan could include providing coverage for people with pre-existing conditions, the people said, and spurring the sale of insurance across state lines. Other provisions being discussed include giving states more flexibility, expanding health savings accounts, linking price transparency to quality metrics, and more insurance options for consumers, they said. The plan would include a number of new elements that haven’t yet been released, one person familiar with the work said.”

My take: The story’s very next paragraph is of equal (or greater) importance:

“White House officials stressed that the plans haven’t been completed, and some close to the president have privately expressed skepticism. One former White House official raised the possibility that the plan may not materialize this fall if Mr. Trump second-guesses the effort. The administration is also still weighing how specific the plan should be, the people familiar with the plan said, and the ideas have yet to get Mr. Trump’s sign off.”

Republicans have a lot of substantive and 2020 political problems on health care, to be sure.  August is not a great time to solve them.  If Republicans could get on the same page about what their problems are and how to solve them, they would mitigate one of the Democrats’ current advantages. Most every piece of available data, however, makes it pretty clear that that is not going to happen.  The party’s divides are real.

McConnell heckled at Kentucky political pageant and by NY Times.

Republican majority leader hit with “Moscow Mitch” moniker and over gridlocking.

My take: McConnell personally and professionally cares about Democratic taunts and press attacks as much as Dick Cheney does. Which is to say: not at all.  That imperviousness is liberating for him and/but distorting for our democracy.

NY Post: “Feds probing AOC’s chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti after sudden resignation”

“AOC did not show up at a Bronx event on her schedule Saturday. Her office would not comment on the staff departures, and Chakrabarti did not return several messages.”

My take: Whether there is a federal investigation that goes anywhere or not, this story generally has at least some falling action still to come, and maybe even more rising action.  The Friday night departures from AOC’s staff begged more questions than they answered, and the answers will start with the Congresswoman.


Sign up for the Wide World of News email

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

One thought on “Sunday, August 4, 2019

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s