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TOP OF MIND TODAY…
► The Supreme Court announced on Monday that it will consider a partisan gerrymandering case that could have significant repercussions on future elections. From the Washington Post:
The justices regularly are called to invalidate state electoral maps that have been illegally drawn to reduce the influence of racial minorities by depressing the impact of their votes.
But the Supreme Court has never found a plan unconstitutional because of partisan gerrymandering. If it does, it would have a revolutionary impact on the reapportionment that comes after the 2020 election and could come at the expense of Republicans, who control the process in the majority of states.
The court accepted a case from Wisconsin, where a divided panel of three federal judges last year ruled last year that the state’s Republican leadership in 2011 pushed through a plan so partisan that it violated the Constitution’s First Amendment and equal rights protections.
There’s plenty of analysis on the news available throughout the Internet tubes. Here’s a particularly-helpful piece from The Atlantic.
Gill v. Whitford is the name of the case your kids may someday read about in history books.
► Senate Republicans continue to secretly debate their own Trumpcare bill, and while the news about pending votes has been conflicting, the data is piling up in opposition. According to a new report from the Center for American Progress:
Republican health care plans, including the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), would repeal taxes on the wealthy, including the Net Investment Income Tax (NIIT)—a tax on combined capital gain, dividend, and interest income applicable to individuals making more than $200,000 or couples filing jointly making more than $250,000 in adjusted gross income. This tax cut is paid for by eliminating health insurance coverage for millions of low- and moderate-income Americans. Approximately 90 percent of the benefit of repealing this tax goes to the top 1 percent of households.
The Center for American Progress estimates that 271,500 Coloradans would lose healthcare coverage by 2026 under current Republican plans — while anyone earning more than $1 million per year would see an average tax cut of $38,341. These figures are one of many reasons why a bipartisan group of Governors is asking Congress to scrap the Republican healthcare bill.
►Meanwhile, Politico reports that Senate Democrats are getting more aggressive in pushing back against Trumpcare plans:
Democrats will grind Senate business to a halt in a protest against Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare.
Beginning Monday night, Democrats will start objecting to all unanimous consent requests in the Senate, according to a Democratic aide. They plan to control the floor of the chamber Monday night and try to force the House-passed health care bill to committee in a bid to further delay it.
Without the votes to block Obamacare repeal, Democrats are turning to procedural moves they believe will underscore their most powerful argument: Republicans are hiding their repeal plan from the public and using Senate procedures to keep it a secret.
It’s also a fair question to ask whether or not Gardner even understands whatever secret legislation the Senate is crafting.
► The seemingly-interminable special election for a House seat in Georgia will finally come to a conclusion on Tuesday. As the Washington Post reports, last week’s shooting at a Congressional baseball game in Washington D.C. has further complicated an already perplexing situation.
Get even more smarter after the jump…
IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…
► “Protect Our Care Colorado” is organizing large-scale Trumpcare protests for June 22 at local offices of Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma).
► President Trump’s announcement on Friday that he plans to tighten interactions with Cuba was met with differing opinions from Colorado lawmakers.
► Political observers have a new acronym to remember: NACB.
► Local officials have received assurances from federal honchos that funding for a Superfund site in Southwest Colorado will continue. From the Durango Herald:
Officials from La Plata and San Juan counties and Durango were assured last week during meetings in the nation’s Capitol that funding for the Superfund site near Silverton would continue.
The group met with elected delegates and Environmental Protection Agency officials because President Donald Trump cut the budget for Superfund, a nationwide environmental cleanup program, by 25 percent.
Durango City Councilor Dean Brookie said the meeting was successful and that everyone was on board for the continued financial support of the project to clean the Animas River watershed.
“We wanted to make sure the EPA continued to provide a revenue stream for this particular Superfund,” Brookie said. “It was great to talk to each one of those folks and get a resounding yes.”
► Republican state Sen. Kevin Lundberg says he is not considering another run for Congress in CD-2, but he is contemplating joining the ever-growing list of Republicans who want to be the GOP nominee for State Treasurer.
► Republican Attorney General Cynthia Coffman was a very visible presence at Denver’s annual PrideFest parade. As Ernest Luning reports for the publication formally known as the Colorado Statesman:
Coffman, the lone Republican on a stage filled with Democratic elected officials and candidates, told the crowd she could also be the only Republican attorney general in the country taking part in an LGBT pride event.
“I’m not positive — I need to research this — but I think I may be the only Republican attorney general in the country who walks in a Pride parade, and if that is true, I’m going to be challenging all of my colleagues to do this, because there’s no reason why we all shouldn’t be out here,” Coffman said at a rally at the state Capitol after marching down East Colfax Avenue in the annual PrideFest Parade.
► President Trump seems like he really wants to duke it out over allegations of collusion involving the Russians and his 2016 Presidential campaign.
OTHER LINKS YOU SHOULD CLICK
► The Trump administration rescinded an Obama-era rule last week that would have been good news for thousands of people living in Colorado. From the Denver Post:
Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly on Thursday ended Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, or DAPA. The program that would have protected from deportation the parents of citizens and other legal permanent residents, never took effect because of court challenges.
The Migration Policy Institute, a nonprofit Washington-based think tank that studies immigration, estimated that in 2013 Denver County had 14,000 people eligible for the program. The organization estimated 22,000 were eligible across the metro area.
Participants had to meet conditions, including a history free of serious crimes, to be eligible.
► Just read the lede in this story from The Huffington Post on Senate healthcare discussions:
Senate Republicans are hurling themselves toward passing an incredibly unpopular set of health care reforms that even they don’t understand, haven’t seen and likely won’t see until just before it hits the floor.