Get More Smarter on Monday (March 11)

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TOP OF MIND TODAY…

► The White House released its new budget proposal on Monday, which includes $8.6 billion in new funding for President Trump’s border wall obsession. From the Washington Post:

President Trump proposed a $4.7 trillion budget plan Monday that stands as a sharp challenge to Congress and the Democrats trying to unseat him, the first act in a multi-front struggle over the role of government that threatens to consume Washington for the next 18 months.

The budget proposal dramatically raises the possibility of another government shutdown in October, with the inclusion of an additional $8.6 billion to build sections of a wall along the U. S.-Mexico border. Trump’s ask for yet more wall money — beyond the spending he is already seeking under a “national emergency” declaration at the border — infuriated Democrats.

The budget also calls for a significant increase in military spending, causing problems with some Republicans who are uneasy about how it is allocated. If lawmakers and Trump don’t reach a spending agreement by the end of September, many government operations will grind to a halt.

Trump’s budget proposal includes massive cuts to Medicaid and Medicare.

 

► Colorado lawmakers are debating major changes to how the state operates financially, as Anna Staver reports for the Denver Post:

Taken individually, a group of state tax bills in the works offer an overhaul of how Coloradans pay property taxes, backfill public schools and pay for a multibillion-dollar backlog of maintenance projects for roads and bridges. Taken together, the bills represent a fundamental shift in the way Colorado works.

“The overarching conversation here is that the people of Colorado for the last quarter century have put conflicting tax policy into the constitution without realizing it,” said Sen. Lois Court, D-Denver. “Standing alone each amendment can sound good, but combined they have caused an incredible mess.”

Supporters of fixing that “incredible mess” see Colorado’s booming economy and one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country contrasted with leaky school roofs, outdated textbooks and fire districts that worry about how they can keep their response times from rising.

 

► State Sen. Vicki Marble crossed a new line on Friday when she appeared to threaten 9News reporter Kyle Clark in a social media post. Marble’s troubling words were picked up nationally by Newsweek magazine.

 

 

Get even more smarter after the jump…

IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…

 

► If you are a Democrat with a soul for sale, the oil and gas industry is more than happy to make that purchase.

 

► The Washington Post does a deep dive into Colorado’s troubles with adequately funding K-12 education:

Across the increasingly affluent state, which boasts powerful job growth and one of the highest percentages of college graduates in the country, public K-12 systems are in deep trouble.

Collectively, officials say, Colorado’s 178 school districts have more than $14 billion in infrastructure needs. Spending per student is well below the national average of approximately $12,500 — even below of Mississippi, Louisiana and New Mexico, which in 2017 posted the nation’s highest poverty rates. Budget shortfalls have stalled teacher pay and forced more than half of all districts to put one or more schools on a four-day week, the largest proportion in the country

…“Colorado remains among the least well-funded systems in the nation,” said Bruce Baker, a school finance expert and professor at the Rutgers University Graduate School of Education. “They’ve got the ability to spend more. They just don’t.”

 

► Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Denver) says he will decide within “weeks, not months” about whether he will formally pursue the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2020.

 

► The Denver Post reports on progress in Congress to make it easier for legal marijuana businesses to have access to banking services.

 

► Legislation that seeks to overhaul regulations for the oil and gas industry in Colorado is on its way to the floor of the State Senate for debate.

 

► As the Associated Press reports, newly-minted Presidential candidate John Hickenlooper doesn’t want anything to do with the issue of legalizing marijuana on a federal level:

Hickenlooper opposed the ballot measure that fully legalized marijuana in Colorado in 2012. But he said he accepted the will of the voters and won praise for implementing the measure. He says his “worst fears” about legalization haven’t been realized and considers the system better than when the drug was illegal.

Still, Hickenlooper isn’t willing to go as far as some competitors. Rather than calling for national legalization, he wants the drug to no longer be a Schedule 1 controlled substance so it can be studied.

He doesn’t think the federal government “should come in and tell every state that it should be legal,” believing states should make their own determinations.

 

► White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders will hold a formal media briefing today for the first time in 42 days.

 

President Trump says he supports getting rid of Daylight Savings Time.

 

► The Democratic National Committee selected Milwaukee, Wisconsin to host its 2020 presidential convention.

 

► A new Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom poll indicates that the battle for the Democratic Presidential nomination in Iowa is currently led by Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Vice President Joe Biden.

 

► The President of the United Auto Workers union is warning of a potential strike as contract negotiations with automakers get chippy.

 

Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 

 

Donald Trump, Jr. is applauding Fox News talking monkey Tucker Carlson for refusing to apologize for misogynistic comments. Because of course he is.

 

► Democrat Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg says that Vice President Mike Pence is “a cheerleader for the porn star presidency.” 

 

 

ICYMI

 

► El Paso County Sheriff Bill Elder says he is receiving “threats” because he said publicly that he opposes the idea of choosing not to enforce laws that he may personally disagree with. Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams, meanwhile, has no problem ignoring laws that don’t meet his approval.

 

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5 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

    Additionally, *rump's budget would reopen the 2018 Farm Bill, proposing to slash crop insurance (what farmers use as collateral for operating loans) and tighten commodity program eligibility limits (good idea but isn't going to play well in Senator Sonnenberg's district) – all while making deep cuts in SNAP which translates to fewer purchases of food products). In the ‘ironical’ department I was with an exec of a major retailer last week that had data showing 80% of Wal-Mart shoppers voted for *rump in the ’16 cycle.

  2. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Denver) says he will decide within “weeks, not months” about whether he will formally pursue the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2020.

    If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

  3. JohnInDenverJohnInDenver says:

    Hickenlooper on marijuana is classic —

    • take credit for implementing a decision made by the people;
    • remove the barrier to study and discuss the results sometime, with no clear deadline for action;
    • don’t touch the key federal features making legal marijuana challenging (enforcement, banking, insurance, etc.);
    • allow other people (or states) to make decisions

    I don’t know how many votes are out there for “let’s allow other people to talk about the issue.” Obviously won’t satisfy the “lock ’em up” crowd or the “take a puff” crowd. So what’s the benefit of talking about it?

  4. deathpigeon | they/them says:

    Lol. Hickenlooper is a joke.

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