It’s hotter than Donald Trump’s bowels outside; don’t forget your hat and sunscreen this weekend! It’s time to Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.
TOP OF MIND TODAY…
► Thursday saw the 154th mass shooting in the United States in 2018 alone. The Washington Post reports on the massacre at a newsroom in Maryland:
A man with a vendetta against a newspaper in Annapolis, Md., is due in court Friday morning to face charges of murder after a Thursday afternoon shooting left five people dead and two injured.
Officials say Jarrod Ramos, 38, of Laurel, fired a shotgun through the glass doors of the Capital Gazette newsroom and then turned the weapon on his victims, carrying out what appears to be the deadliest attack on journalists in the United States in decades.
On Friday, the opinion page of the Capital Gazette read, “Today we are speechless.”
It went on, “This page is intentionally left blank today to commemorate victims of Thursday’s shooting at our office.”
This story for Bloomberg News attempts to answer the question of why American laws on gun violence aren’t changing despite overwhelming public support for new regulations.
► Senator Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) has no problem with ramming through a new Supreme Court Justice just two years after he participated in Republican efforts in the Senate to deny a confirmation hearing for President Obama’s last SCOTUS nominee, Merrick Garland.
► As 9News reports, the U.S. Senate passed a farm bill that could legalize hemp…if the House of Representatives can find agreement:
Congress doesn’t seem likely to legalize marijuana anytime soon, but hemp— a non-intoxicating version of the same species of plants– would be removed from the list of federal controlled substances.
Hemp (sometimes referred to as “industrial hemp” in legal speak) is any strain of cannabis that contains less than 0.3 percent THC, the psychoactive drug found in marijuana. You can think of it as the cannabis equivalent of non-alcoholic beer.
In Colorado, it’s mainly grown for food in the form of hemp seed and oil. It’s also grown commonly here for CBD, a natural compound in cannabis that doesn’t get you high but does have medical uses for things like seizures.
Get even more smarter after the jump…
IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…
► Republican gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton is looking for a Lieutenant Governor candidate, and he may be leaning toward a climate change-denying Mesa County Commissioner. Stapleton’s top choice, CU Regent Heidi Ganahl, reportedly rejected Stapleton’s entreaties to be his running mate this fall.
► This story from NBC News is a confounding tale about lost manufacturing jobs in Missouri and the workers who back President Trump anyway:
President Donald Trump has vowed to bring back American jobs, but three months since making his first move to impose tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum, his trade policies have cost 60 employees their positions at the country’s largest nail manufacturing plant.
For 29 years, Chris Pratt has worked the floors of the Mid Continent Nail Factory, a business started in 1987 in this town of 17,000 people. He is now the operations manager and oversees 500 employees. But this month, he eliminated 60 positions at the factory after a 50 percent drop in nail orders following Trump’s June 1 announcement of a 25 percent tariff on all steel imports from Mexico, the source of the company’s raw material…
…Although Jimmie Coffer is fearful that his own job and those of his co-workers could all be at risk, he continues to support the Trump administration’s efforts.
“I know what affects me, and the tariffs are hurting me on a daily basis — I’d like to see relief,” Coffer told NBC News. “I still have faith in the president. I believe he knows what he’s doing and can turn everything around for us.”
President Trump can turn around the car that he himself crashed into a wall.
► Speaking of misplaced hope, many Americans are hoping President Trump will do something to deal with rising prescription drug prices. From CNN:
When President Trump gives his speech about prescription drug prices Friday, perhaps no one will be listening more intently than Victoria Stuessel.
If the President has successful ideas for cutting drug prices, maybe she can stop skipping doses of her multiple sclerosis medicines….
…A survey last year by the American Society for Clinical Oncology found that even severely ill patients have had to compromise. The survey of 195 cancer survivors found that 13% postponed filling prescriptions or didn’t fill them at all, 11% ordered medications from sources outside the United States, 9% skipped doses of their medications, and 8% cut pills in half to save money.
“All across the country, people are struggling to pay for their prescription drugs,” said David Mitchell, president and founder of the nonprofit Patients for Affordable Drugs. “They’re doing things like refinancing their homes and going without food to pay for their drugs.”
► Colorado Democrats were holding a unity rally on the steps of the State Capitol this morning in support of gubernatorial nominee Jared Polis. Governor John Hickenlooper, former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, and Reps. Ed Perlmutter and Diana DeGette are among those publicly backing Polis this morning.
The other three Democratic candidates for Governor — Cary Kennedy, Mike Johnston, and Donna Lynne — have already endorsed Polis’ General Election campaign.
Republican gubernatorial nominee Walker Stapleton presided over his own unity tour on Thursday.
► Democrat Joe Salazar continues to hold out hope that he might still have a chance in the Attorney General Primary that Phil Weiser almost certainly won already. Ernest Luning has more for the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman. It may be theoretically possible for Salazar to catch Weiser as the final ballots are tabulated, but the odds are pretty slim.
► Here’s a list of rising Democratic stars to watch nationally.
► Donald Trump is absolutely positive that Donald Trump is a totally awesome President.
► Governor John Hickenlooper is urging Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to relocate the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management to Western Colorado.
► Fox 31 looks ahead to the race for an open Congressional seat in CD-2…though nobody expects it to be much of a fight.
► Here’s a breakdown of 25 new laws that go into effect in Colorado on Sunday.
► A wildfire in Southern Colorado, dubbed the “Spring Fire,” is nowhere close to being contained.
► You don’t have to like it to understand that it makes sense.
► Paul “Smiley” Pazen is Denver’s new chief of police.
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► President Trump’s top economic adviser is confidently lying about the state of the federal deficit. From the Washington Post:
Larry Kudlow, director of the White House’s National Economic Council, said on Fox Business that stronger economic growth was creating enough new tax revenue to bring down the deficit.
“The deficit — which was one of the other criticisms [of the GOP tax law] — is coming down, and it’s coming down rapidly,” Kudlow said. “It’s throwing up enormous amounts of new tax revenue.”
It’s hard to know where Kudlow is getting his numbers. The deficit from January through April was $161 billion, according to Treasury, up from $135 billion at the same point last year. And it will deteriorate further from here, since the Treasury collects a large amount of tax revenue during April when taxes are due for most Americans.
Eh, facts are for the weak.
► The UN Migration organization voted down President Trump’s nominee to lead the International Organization for Migration. Ken Isaacs had once suggested that Austria and Switzerland build a wall in the Alps to keep out migrants.
► Vox.com reports on a new poll that shows overwhelming opposition to any efforts to rollback Roe v. Wade.
► It might be time to think about moving to 11 Supreme Court Justices.