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TOP OF MIND TODAY…
► Unless you’ve been living inside an old Budweiser box, you’re probably aware that Wednesday was the first day of public impeachment hearings on Capitol Hill. Ambassador William B. Taylor, Jr. and George Kent, a deputy assistant secretary at the State Department, testified for hours in front of members of the House Intelligence Committee and the eyes of the world.
Taylor dropped a bombshell in his opening statement, telling a story about a phone call between President Trump and EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland that apparently laid bare that Trump cares only about Ukraine insofar as they might investigate former Vice President Joe Biden for invented transgressions. The rest of the hearing went downhill from there for Republicans.
For more on Wednesday’s proceedings, here’s a quick list of links:
♦ Trump Exposed: A Brutal Day for the President (Politico)
♦ In the big moment, Republicans go small (Washington Post)
♦ How Adam Schiff Avoided a Circus (Washington Post)
♦ Republicans’ Best Defense is a Bad Offense (New York Times)
Of course, as Philip Bump notes for The Washington Post, your takeaway from Wednesday’s hearings might be quite a bit different if you get your information from the likes of Fox News.
► As the Associated Press reports, Gov. Jared Polis (D-Boulder) unveiled a new state budget with a heavy focus on education spending:
Polis proposed a $34.5 billion state budget Wednesday for the next fiscal year, once again emphasizing early and higher education investments and seeking to increase rainy-day reserves.
Polis presented his request to the Joint Budget Committee, which will craft a balanced budget during the 2020 legislative session.
Polis noted that the requested funding increase of 2.9% kept with the inflation rate, Colorado Politics reported.
“There’s not a lot of free money” available, he said.
The Denver Post has more on the upcoming budget battle.
► Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) is trying to overturn a magazine ban in Colorado as gun stores openly flaunt laws designed to prohibit high-capacity gun magazines.
Get even more smarter after the jump…
IN CASE YOU ARE STANDING NEAR A WATER COOLER…
► Two new polls suggest that support for legalizing marijuana nationwide has never been stronger.
► Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan brought some home movies to the White House for a visit with President Trump.
► New polling from Fox News suggests that former Vice President Joe Biden is leading President Trump by 12 points in a hypothetical General Election matchup.
► Colorado Republicans say the quiet part out loud about a new ballot initiative that is designed solely for fear-based Republican voter turnout. If successful, this nonsense initiative would achieve absolutely nothing of value in terms of public policy.
► The Denver Post reports on a college cybersecurity competition at NREL in Golden that is highlighting America’s need for more cybersecurity professionals.
► Westword reports on the latest efforts to ban the controversial “supplement” known as Kratom.
► Walmart is suing 31 Colorado counties for allegedly “overvaluing” its equipment and making the company pay too much in taxes.
► The Lakewood Sentinel exposes a bullshit pretend “newspaper” calling itself the “Lakewood Watchdog.”
► Gannett and GateHouse Media are finalizing a merger that would create the nation’s largest newspaper publishing company.
► A law firm has published dozens of reports of alleged sexual abuse by officials with the Catholic Church.
► Governor Jared Polis covers a host of issues in an interview with Colorado Public Radio.
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► The Chaffee County Republican Party uses social media to openly promote both racism and sexism. Neat!
► At least your state doesn’t have a bunch of drunken judges brawling at a White Castle.
► Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick will seek the Democratic Presidential nomination because there aren’t enough candidates already.
► Check out this week’s episode of The Get More Smarter Podcast for more post-election analysis and other political jabberings: