Wednesday Morning Open Thread


 
And yet, we go on…








Local Races: Okay, I’m On #TeamSharice!

The Kansan commentors who responded to my post yesterday — all three of them — were uniformly positive, so I happily chipped in for her campaign.

I’ve asked DougJ to set up one of his patented Balloon Juice widgets for her, but until he can find the time in his busy life, here’s her ActBlue page.

One more Kansas native speaks up:








Excellent Read — “Nancy Pelosi: ‘They Come After Me Because I’m Effective’ “

You come at the queen, you best not miss. Tim Dickinson, in Rolling Stone, interviews “the House Minority Leader on the midterms, impeachment, her own party, sexism and the sexist-in-chief”:

Pelosi is one of the most powerful women in global politics. She gets credit for securing passage of much of the legislation in the Obama legacy, including the Recovery Act, Wall Street reform and especially the Affordable Care Act. “Nancy Pelosi has been one of the most transformational figures in the modern Democratic Party,” says Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez. Pelosi also spearheaded the takeover of the House a dozen years ago in 2006 – an achievement that has become fodder for her critics. “Leader Pelosi has talked about how we need to do what we did in 2006,” says Rep. Seth Moulton, an ambitious Massachusetts Democrat who argues for a “new generation” of House leadership. “I mean, we barely had iPhones in 2006 – it was a different world.”

But for all the talk about Nancy Pelosi, less time has been spent actually listening to her. Rolling Stone sat down with Pelosi for an hour on a May evening in Des Moines, Iowa, where she was raising money for the local Democratic Party. At the fundraiser, standing before a wall-sized American flag, Pelosi sought to flatten the difference between President Trump and GOP candidates. “He’s their guy,” she says of Trump. “Make no mistake: This election, it’s not – well it’s about him in certain respects, we can’t ignore that – but it’s about them.”…

I want to dig in on 2018 and understand how you’re thinking about the election and how the angles break.
When Hillary didn’t win, people said, “Can you win the House?” And I said, “I’ll tell you in a year.” Because it matters where the president is a year out. If he’s under 50 [percent approval rating], we can win it. Just to put in a little historical perspective. In ‘05 and ‘06, [former Democratic Senate leader] Harry Reid and I said, “We’re going to win the Congress.” People said, “No way. It’s going to be a permanent Republican majority.” Bush had just won. In January of ‘05, he was at 58 percent in the polls. The war in Iraq; people in the streets; he’s at 58 percent in the polls. We would have to bring his numbers down. And he gave us a gift: He was going to privatize Social Security. [That] helped take his numbers down, into like the 40s. What other difference did we want to emphasize? It was “Drain the swamp.” That was ours. [Trump] stole it from us. “End the culture of cronyism, incompetence and corruption.” That was our thing. They were getting indicted, subpoenaed all over the place. And then Hurricane Katrina: Cronyism and incompetence. Thirty-eight percent in September.

With Trump, he’s done the heavy lifting for you?
We can’t take credit for taking his numbers down, but for taking advantage of the opportunity it presented. To keep [his numbers] down we had to make sure people understood what Republicans were trying to do with the Affordable Care Act, what they were doing in terms of inequality and the disparity of income. Anyway, he was at 38 to 40 percent a year before the [2018] election. So, they get the retirements. I think it’s 46 today. And we get the A-Team on the field. We would like to say we recruited [our candidates]. Trump recruited them for us. [Laughs.] We’re in a very good place now…

We’ve seen consecutive Republican speakers flame out, essentially, because they couldn’t deal with the insurgency on their right flank. What is your secret to keeping Democrats united?
I’m really good at what I do. I’m a legislative virtuoso. I really love legislating. It takes knowledge, and experience, institutional memory. I was forged in the Intelligence Committee and especially the Appropriations Committee. I know how you can reach agreement…
Read more








What Does MAGA Stand For? Stormy Daniel’s Edition

Apparently MAGA stands for Motorboat American Great Again!

The Daily Beast got its hands on the details

UPDATE: On Thursday, prosecutors dropped charges against Stormy Daniels, who was cuffed for motorboating undercover vice cops while performing at a strip club in Columbus, Ohio.

In a statement, Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein said no crime was committed because Clifford was not a regular performer at the club, as required under the law she was accused of violating.

“My office was not involved in this sting operation, so any additional questions about it must be directed to the Columbus Division of Police,” Klein added. “The charges have been dismissed.”

Stormy Daniels was busted at a Columbus, Ohio strip club late Wednesday in what appears to be a sting by the police department’s vice squad.

The arrest came in the midst of Daniels’ “Make America Horny Again” tour, and as her attorney continues his crusade against President Trump.

Daniels was charged with three counts of illegally operating a sexually oriented business—employee knowingly touching any patron. According to Ohio state law, anyone who isn’t a family member is prohibited from touching a nude or semi-nude performer.

An arrest report reviewed by The Daily Beast reveals how two female vice cops and a pair of male colleagues entered Sirens Gentleman’s Club and zeroed in on Daniels, as well as two other jiggle joint employees.

The four officers visited Sirens around 10 p.m. to investigate “Vice related offenses as a result of complaints received alleging prostitution and drug activity,” the document stated.

Officer Mary Praither and Detective Whitney Lancaster sat near the stage of the VIP area, where another dancer, Brittany Walters, was performing in the middle of the room and allegedly rubbed her bare breasts on Praither’s face before fondling Praither’s chest. The foursome then headed to the main room and sat at a table. Around 11:30 p.m., Clifford took the stage, and most of the customers “got up from their tables and stood immediately adjacent to the stage throwing dollar bills at Ms. Clifford,” the police report stated. While dancing, Clifford removed her top and “began forcing the faces of the patrons into her chest and using her bare breasts to smack the patrons,” the affidavit said, adding that she was “fondling the breasts of female patrons.”

When the officers observed Cliffords’ antics, Detective Lancaster, Officer Praither and Detective Shana Keckley approached the stage. “Ms. Clifford leaned over, grabbed Det. Keckley’s head and began smacking her face with her bare breasts and holding her face between her breasts against her chest,” the report stated. Clifford then found Lancaster and performed the same stage maneuver, before moving down the stage to Praither. According to the report, Clifford “began fondling Ofc. Praither’s buttock and breasts” before pressing Praither’s face into her chest. Another officer, Det. Steven Rosser, watched the “criminal activity” from the bar area. After Clifford was done with Praither, Rosser exited the club to request backup to arrest Clifford and two club employees: Walters and Miranda Panda.

As The Daily Beast reported in its update, the charges were dropped pretty quickly.

Avenatti is also running a theory up the pole that the whole thing was a set up by a Columbus detective who is a fan of the President’s:

We’ll have to wait and see what he uncovers.

Regardless of whether this was a setup, I’m pretty sure that the assignment for this undercover op went something like this:

Duty Sergeant: Alright, alright, settle down. Here’s today’s assignments, but first I need three volunteers for special duty. Settle down, settle down. You don’t even know what it is yet Here’s what you’ll have to do: feel up Stormy Daniels while she’s stripping at her show tonight. So who thinks they’re up for it?

Open thread!








Monday Morning Open Thread: The Work Goes On

From the Washington Post, “Students begin tour to address gun violence, uniting suburban and urban survivors in Chicago”:

CHICAGO — The nation’s contentious debate about guns came here this weekend, to a small, nondescript South Side park in a city where violence is rampant and the homicide count is escalating. Survivors of a suburban school mass shooting in Florida joined with survivors of an ongoing urban shooting epidemic in an effort to unite the nation’s youth ahead of the upcoming midterm elections.

But instead of the walkouts and political speeches and boisterous rallies like one Friday night at a nearby church — which included music stars such as Chance the Rapper and Jennifer Hudson — on Saturday the students got down to work. In an understated effort in the struggling Auburn Gresham neighborhood, about 20 teenagers with the March for Our Lives movement began a 20-state summer bus tour with a drive to register young voters and encourage them to go to the polls.

The students and recent graduates of Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the site of a mass shooting in February that left 17 people dead and created a renewed effort to battle gun violence, said they don’t want a repeal of the Second Amendment or to banish guns. Instead, they want to galvanize the youth vote to make their peers understand how they can play an important role in getting more sensible gun reform laws on the books.

“The only horse we have in this race is living until tomorrow,” said Cameron Kasky, 17.

Volunteers maintained a registration kiosk as a DJ played music and local residents could pick up free fried chicken and ice cream. Partnering with teenagers from Chicago anti-violence groups, packs of young people canvassed surrounding blocks and rang doorbells. The Parkland and Chicago students, some of whom met during a Florida visit in March, walked leisurely as they talked and laughed with a familiarity that obscured the troubling circumstances that brought them together…