Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic was named first team All-NBA on Thursday — only the second player in Nuggets history to accomplish such a feat. It’s time “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…
► As the country prepares to celebrate Memorial Day weekend, President Trump is sending more military forces to the Middle East so that he can show Iran that he has the bigger…um, pen. From the Washington Post:
The Trump administration, facing rising tensions with Iran, plans to reinforce its military presence in the Middle East by sending another few thousand forces to the region to step up missile defense and surveillance, according to U.S. officials.
The decision to send the additional forces to U.S. Central Command, which oversees military operations across the Middle East, was made late Thursday during a meeting at the White House between President Trump and top Pentagon leaders, the officials said.
Ahead of the meeting, acting defense secretary Patrick Shanahan said the purpose of any additional troops would be to ensure the protection of U.S. forces and avoid the risk of Iranian miscalculation that could lead to a broader conflict.
“Our job is deterrence. This is not about war,” Shanahan said
President Trump may also commemorate Memorial Day by issuing pardons for several Americans accused of war crimes. Why would he do this? Because Fox News wants it to happen.
► An effort to recall Rep. Tom Sullivan (D-Aurora) by Colorado Republicans and the “no compromises” gun group Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) has become a complete messaging disaster for the GOP.
► “Gardner’s office declined an interview request from The Denver Post this week…”
Senator Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) continues to dodge reporters seeking answers from him about his position on abortion after Alabama passed the most restrictive abortion measure in the country earlier this month.
► Colorado is the first state in the country to cap rising prices of insulin. Governor Jared Polis signed legislation on Wednesday that limits the co-pay for the life saving medicine to $100 per month.
Get even more smarter after the jump…
IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…
► British Prime Minister Theresa May announced that she will resign as leader of the Conservative Party on June 7, paving the way for a new Prime Minister to be selected later this summer. May’s early exit is largely due to her inability to negotiate a deal on Brexit.
► A massive disaster relief package has suddenly stalled in Congress because of a single Republican Congressman from Texas. As the Washington Post reports:
Rep. Chip Roy (R-Tex.) voted to block the legislation, which has the support of President Trump and passed the Senate on Thursday.
Only one vote was needed to defeat the motion. House lawmakers left town Thursday morning, before Senate negotiators reached a compromise on the bill. With members absent, House leaders had hoped to pass the measure by unanimous consent…
…Roy’s objection to the disaster aid bill further delays legislation that would send aid to victims of Western wildfires, Midwestern flooding and hurricanes that hit the Southeast and Puerto Rico, as well as to other disaster-affected areas across the country.
Roy is a former chief of staff for Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, which partially explains this nonsense.
► “We have done nothing. Zero. Zilch. Nada.”
That’s what Republican Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana says about his Senate colleagues, which doesn’t exactly square with White House talking points accusing Democrats of mucking up the legislative process.
► As the Associated Press reports, President Trump is not at all thin-skinned or anything like that:
No, Trump insisted Thursday, he did not have a temper tantrum a day earlier when he cut off a White House meeting with congressional Democrats after just three minutes.
To prove it — in the middle of a meeting with farmers — he called on five members of his staff to bear witness to his demeanor.
One by one, his advisers dutifully stepped forward to testify, saying Trump had been “very calm,” albeit “direct,” in his meeting with the Democrats. Then the president questioned the mental capacity of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who had irked him Wednesday with her suggestion that he was engaged in a “cover-up” as he directed aides to refuse to cooperate with congressional inquiries.
The testimonials were a wild detour amid Trump’s announcement of new federal assistance for farmers caught up in his escalating trade war with China.
That’s really, really, really creepy.
► For the first time in nearly 20 years, Colorado is not facing a severe drought this summer.
► The Trump administration is making a new effort to roll back rights for transgender Americans, as the Washington Post reports:
The Department of Health and Human Services on Friday proposed a new rule that civil rights groups worry may be used to deny care to transgender patients.
HHS director of the Office for Civil Rights Roger Severino said the change will bring the regulations in line with what lawmakers originally intended, before the definition of gender was broadened under the Obama administration…
…The proposal is part of a broader effort by religious conservatives in the Trump administration to define gender restrictively. The result has been a weakening of protections for transgender people.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development on Wednesday proposed a new rule that would allow federally funded shelters to turn away transgender people for religious reasons or force them to use bathrooms and sleeping areas that do not conform to their gender identity. A March 12 memo from the Defense Department outlined a new policy that bans individuals with a gender dysphoria diagnosis who are taking hormones or who have transitioned to another gender to enlist. In addition, troops already in the military would have to serve according to their sex assigned at birth.
Giellis has come under heavy fire over remarks that made it appear she was racially insensitive. She responded by deleting her personal social media accounts and releasing a statement. She regrets that now.
“I think in hindsight we all have those thoughts, ‘could I have handled that better?’… yes, absolutely.”
“Could I have handled that better?” is basically her campaign slogan now.
► President Trump is trying to drag out a response to Democratic demands for his tax returns and other financial information, but as Politico reports, this could backfire BIGLY.
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► Senate Republicans moved closer to permanently banning earmarks despite opposition from President Trump.
► Manipulated videos attempting to paint House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as a slurring drunk are being widely shared on social media…thanks in part to President Trump himself. From the New York Times:
One of the videos, which showed Ms. Pelosi speaking at a conference this week, was slowed down to make her speech appear continually garbled. The video has been viewed millions of times on Facebook and was amplified by the president’s personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, who shared the video Thursday night on Twitter. “What is wrong with Nancy Pelosi?” Mr. Giuliani said in a tweet that has since been deleted. “Her speech pattern is bizarre.”
Mr. Trump tweeted a separate video of Ms. Pelosi, from Fox Business, which spliced together moments from a 20-minute news conference to emphasize points where she had stumbled on her words. “PELOSI STAMMERS THROUGH NEWS CONFERENCE,” the president tweeted.
Ladies and gentlemen, the President of the United States of America.
► You can add another Republican lawmaker to the list of people who are voicing their skepticism over an effort to recall Democratic Rep. Tom Sullivan in HD-37.
Check out the latest episode of The Get More Smarter Show, featuring an in-depth interview with Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser. You can also Get More Smarter by liking Colorado Pols on Facebook!