Get More Smarter on Tuesday (September 24)

Today is National Voter Registration Day; please celebrate responsibly. Now, let’s 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 an audio/visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show or The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us Facebook and Twitter.

TOP OF MIND TODAY…

President Trump’s latest scandal, involving withholding military aid to Ukraine in exchange for that country potentially investigating one of Trump’s political opponents, looks to have tipped the scales on impeachment proceedings. From the New York Times:

House Democrats hurtled on Tuesday toward a consequential set of decisions about the potential impeachment of President Trump, weighing a course that could reshape his presidency amid startling allegations that he sought to enlist a foreign power to aid him politically.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Democrat of California, who has stubbornly resisted a rush to impeachment, appeared to be rapidly changing course, as lawmakers from every corner of her caucus lined up in favor of filing formal charges against Mr. Trump if the allegations are proven true, or if his administration continues to stonewall attempts by Congress to investigate them.

“We will be making announcements later,” she told reporters in the Capitol, declining to discuss her views on impeachment.

One possibility was the formation of a special committee — reminiscent of the one created in 1973 to investigate the Watergate scandal — to look into the president’s dealings with Ukraine and potentially lay the groundwork for articles of impeachment based on the findings.

Colorado Rep. Jason Crow (D-Aurora) is among seven freshman Democrats who penned an Op-Ed for the Washington Post making the case for proceeding with impeachment proceedings.

President Trump today confirmed that he made a decision to withhold military aid from Ukraine, though he claims it is totally unrelated to his requests to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.

 

 If you’re waiting for Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) to weigh in on President Trump’s Ukraine scandal…well, you might want to get comfortable.

 

 Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser is supporting an effort to require federal background checks for ammunition purchases.

 

► Make sure to check out the latest episode of The Get More Smarter Podcast. Hosts Jason Bane and Alan Franklin have Ukraine on the Membrane!

 

Get even more smarter after the jump…

IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…

 

 The Trump administration is threatening to withhold federal funding from California unless it investigates Joe Biden stops trying to improve its air quality. As the Washington Post reports:

The move by the Environmental Protection Agency escalates the fierce battle between President Trump and the left-leaning state, and could put billions in federal funds in jeopardy.

In a predated letter sent late Monday to the California Air Resources Board, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler suggested that the state “has failed to carry out its most basic tasks under the Clean Air Act,” and needs to either update its plans to tackle air pollution or risk losing federal highway funds. California receives billions in highway funding from the U.S. government every year, and federal officials have the right to halt that money if they determine that a state is not taking sufficient steps to show how it aims to cut air pollution such as soot or smog-forming ozone…

…The decision to invoke a rarely used federal punishment represents the latest salvo in the Trump administration’s feud with California over environmental and other policy issues. Just last week, the EPA joined the Transportation Department in revoking California’s right to set stricter pollution limits on cars and light trucks.

California officials have repeatedly argued that they have sought to impose stricter limits on greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles as part of a broader effort to tackle air pollution in their state. The vehicle standards the Trump administration is blocking, CARB chairwoman Mary Nichols said last week, “are necessary to protect the public health standards and welfare.”

 

 Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains has reached a new contract with its employees. From a press release via SEIU Local 105:

In the culmination of a three-year organizing campaign, healthcare workers at Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM) unanimously ratified their first union contract with the national non-profit healthcare provider.

PPRM workers in Colorado won their election to form a union in December 2017. By the end of 2018, New Mexico and Nevada workers voted to join the unit, expanding Colorado-based Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 105 to a three-state healthcare union  with 180 members in 24 healthcare clinics across the southwest.

“As a bargaining team member, I am proud of what we were able to accomplish for PPRM workers in the health centers,” said Donna Oswald a Physicians Assistant at PPRM for the last 8 years. “Together, we achieved a $15 minimum wage, strong workplace protections, guaranteed wage increases, and a built-in process to address workplace issues that affect our ability to deliver quality care to our patients.”

 

► Employees at the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are less than enthusiastic about moving to Colorado.

 

► The 2020 U.S. Census is officially underway in Colorado.

 

► The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) is so very clever.

 

► State Sen. Kerry Donovan (D-Vail) is endorsing Elizabeth Warren for the Democratic Presidential nomination. Warren continues to see a big surge in momentum in national and state-level polling. 

 

► Colorado conservatives have another thing to gripe about when it comes to TABOR and government funding. From the Denver Post:

The court ruled Monday against a lawsuit by the National Federation of Independent Business that argued business filing fees paid to the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office were really taxes in disguise, and therefore any proposed increases should be subject to a statewide vote.

“We are of course disappointed with the court’s decision,” said Tony Gagliardi, Colorado director for the NFIB. “However, Colorado businesses should be thoroughly disappointed with the court’s lackadaisical attitude in examining the fee versus tax issue.”

The justices wrote that a pre-TABOR statute could give the secretary of state some wiggle room when it came to raising fees “as long as these adjustments didn’t create a new tax, tax rate increase, or a tax policy change directly causing a net revenue gain.” But they stopped short of calling the fees constitutional. Instead, they sided with the trial court and wrote that NFIB didn’t provide enough facts to call the fee a tax…

…The business filing fees range from $5 to $125 and are among the lowest in the nation, according to the Secretary of State’s Office. Most of them haven’t increased during the last decade and some even decreased. One exception is the late penalty for annual business license renewals, which increased from $40 to $50 in 2015.

 

As CBS4 Denver reports, a decades-long conservation effort to protect bighorn sheep in Colorado has been very successful.

 

► The City of Denver is moving closer toward raising the minimum age for tobacco purchases from 18 to 21.

 

President Trump is pouring cold water on a signature policy goal of first-son-in-law Jared Kushner

 

► As the Associated Press explains, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was smacked down by Britain’s highest court:

The unanimous, strongly worded Supreme Court judgment declared Johnson’s order to suspend Parliament “void and of no effect.” The court found that Johnson’s suspension had the effect of limiting debate by lawmakers on Britain’s impending departure from the European Union in violation of Parliament’s constitutional role.

 

 As Chris Cillizza explains for CNN, no bar is too low for President Trump:

If an adult male mocked a teenage girl, you would condemn it.

And rightly so. Because that is the sort of thing that — no matter your politics — we can all agree on. That adults should stay away from mocking kids. Especially publicly. Especially especially when more than 60 million people will see the mockery the instant you do it.

Which brings me to President Donald Trump. And a tweet he sent late Monday night about 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg

…Unfortunately, it’s not at all surprising that Trump saw fit to make fun of Thunberg’s passion and emotion. This is who he is — a schoolyard bully who doesn’t differentiate between a 16-year-old girl and Joe Biden. Or a Gold Star family. Or a prisoner of war. Or white nationalists and those protesting their ideology of hate.

Ladies and gentlemen, the actual President of the United States of America!

 

Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 

 

President Trump thinks that he deserves a Nobel Prize for…something.

 

Stay classy, Fox News

 

ICYMI

 

► The new Grand Junction-based headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will share office space will several oil and gas companies. You can’t make this stuff up.

 

For more political learnings, check out The Get More Smarter Show or The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to give Colorado Pols a thumbs up on Facebook and Twitter

 

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5 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Arvadonian1Arvadonian1 says:

    Trump wants a Nobel Prize?  Talk about the ultimate "Participation Trophy"!

  2. RepealAndReplace says:

    "What is past is prologue." The Tempest, Act 2, Scene I

    The president was a man who was never expected to be president.

    He was a thin-skinned, race-baiting populist. The opposition party held the Congress and detested him on both policy and personality grounds.

    The opposition party was also split between moderates and radicals.

    The president ignored the Congress, tried to block its legislative initiatives and when unable to stop legislation, simply went around it.

    The president also took his show on the road, giving crude and vulgar speeches to his adoring masses.

    Earlier attempts to impeach the president failed because the majority party in the House was split.

    Eventually enough was enough and when Andrew Johnson willfully violated the Tenure of Office Act, the House impeached.

    When the final vote was taken in the Senate, the 1868 election was looming and weighed in the votes of many of the senators. Many feared elevating Senator Benjamin Wade, the radical Republican, who stood to replace Johnson if convicted. They were concerned that Wade would screw up the more moderate Ulysses Grant's chances of being elected.

    I am finishing The Impeachers by Brenda Wineapple which traces what happened between 1865 and 1968 during Reconstruction and the Johnson impeachment. 

    By the way, Andrew Johnson's MAGA speeches were called "Andy's Swing Around the Circle."

    • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

      I have a special disdain for that *sshole Johnson. 

      And what happened to this astonishingly visionary program, which would have fundamentally altered the course of American race relations? Andrew Johnson, Lincoln’s successor and a sympathizer with the South, overturned the Order in the fall of 1865, and, as Barton Myers sadly concludes, “returned the land along the South Carolina, Georgia and Florida coasts to the planters who had originally owned it” — to the very people who had declared war on the United States of America.

       

       

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