November 5, 2017

Sunday School 11/5/17

So what were the hot topics in today's classrooms? Russia, Donna Brazile, and taxes.

On Meet the Press, which is celebrating its 70th anniversary tomorrow, Chuck Todd talked first with Democrat Mark Warner of Virginia, the vice chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, asking if the Mueller indictments would have any impact on the truthfulness of folks testifying before the Senate Committee. Here's Warner's response.
Well, the committee itself has been aware of some of this information... What we did see this week, though, was one more example of at least where the Russians had what appeared to be a fairly organized effort in terms of trying to reach out to folks affiliated with the Trump campaign to share 'dirt' or emails about Hillary Clinton... We've got a lot more questions to get answered. 
Todd wondered if the threat of more indictments would make people more cooperative with the Committee, or more fearful of testifying. Warner noted they had talked with a couple hundred people (with the press being kept in the dark many times) but he was generally pleased with the cooperation they were getting.

Then, Todd asked four  times, trying - and failing - to get more details on who the Committee has been talking to or whether there would be any collision with Mueller's work.  Here's Warner's fourth deflection.
Chuck, again, the way we get the kind of cooperation with the witnesses is frankly, to not share the kind of weekly box score of who we've seen and who we've not seen...And at the end of the day, what we owe the American people is the truth and, most importantly, how we make sure we don't have a foreign power like Russia intervene again in our elections.
Senator James Langford (R-OK), also a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, shared a similar response to the question about the two investigations running into each other.
I'm actually not concerned about that at all... they're focused on criminal investigations, we're focused on armchair quarterbacking, making sure every witness has been seen, every fact has been checked, and we're going through the policy aspects, because long-term, we have policy issues we have to discuss on how we handle elections, how we handle social media, how we're handling classified information, how that's getting out into the public sphere. Those are uniquely things that we will work on. The special counsel has things that he will uniquely work on as well.
Langford also noted that there was no threat that Mueller's work would be shut down, by the White House or by the House of Representatives, and that there was no need at this point for any Congressional action to prevent that from happening.

On Donna "Hey Look at Me, I Wrote a Book about the 2016 Election" Brazile's allegations that the Clintons and the DNC rigged the election against Bernie Sanders (who has never been a Democrat), there were two good comments, the first from current DNC chair Tom Perez:
When I hear the word "rigged," let's be very clear. Hillary Clinton won the Democratic primary by four million votes. The DNC does not run elections for primaries. The RNC does not run elections. States run elections - and those elections were run by the states.
The other was from Tom Brokaw.
Well, I think this is a manifestation of all that's wrong with the Democratic party, frankly. I mean, this is a time when they ought to be talking about the future and they ought to be organizing themselves about what they want to do for the country...
Donna is well known, as you all know, for 'ready, fire, aim' on a lot of the stuff that she does. But to go back over this now, when they're trying to win Congressional races and trying to get ready for '18 seems to me to be beyond counterproductive. 
Quickly, over to Fox News Sunday, where Chris Wallace talked to House Speaker Paul Ryan on the DNC issue as well as on the Trump Dossier, about which it was revealed that the Clinton campaign kept this initially Republican donor initiative going as part of their 'opposition research.' (Opposition research, of course, is what the Trump team has said they were lousy at getting on Clinton).

Ryan was nonchalant on the latter (yeah, our investigation was discovering that too); not so much on the former.
The second thing -- that story just broke. I've never seen anything like that. I mean, we all said that the Clintons thought they lived above the rules. So, this takes the cake. I mean, this is pretty amazing. For them to basically be running the DNC in a primary. To see such a deck stack is really pretty jaw-dropping to me. No wonder the Democrats are ticked off. I would be, too. It's amazing to me on the Clintons, this live above the law or above the rules in this thing. 
I understand why the Democrats are mad about this. They should be mad about this, and I don't think I've ever seen anything like this frankly. 
We are fortunate that he got to the tax plan (file on a postcard, death tax, keep your money, special interest loopholes, just don't pay taxes in the first place) and why he's no longer a deficit hawk.
Paul Ryan deficit hawk is also a growth advocate. Paul Ryan deficit hawk also knows that you have to have a faster growing economy, more jobs, bigger take home pay -- that means higher tax revenues. 
Wallace pressed him on the $1.5T deficit spending allowance that the House passed in their budget bill. Oh that? No big deal.
The reason we did it that way is because we believed that the Senate parliamentarian won't let us use what we call dynamic scoring which - that figures out growth. So, we basically did not want to take the chance that some bureaucrat, unelected, would deny our ability to bring a tax bill through that is pro-growth and that reflects those pro-growth estimates. That's why it's done that way.
But we are absolutely convinced -- and we all have economic models that will show this - that this will help the economy grow... we are going to make sure that we actually get this economy growing and this tax reform bill does that. 
Assuming their economic models are even half as accurate as weather models... But that was a whole nother post.

See you around campus.

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