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Stay Informed :: The Weekly Trump-Era Report (2.24.17)

Stay Informed :: The Weekly Trump-Era Report (2.24.17)

By Peter Yeh

Say what you will about President Donald Trump, but politics in America have miraculously become interesting. It’s hard to keep up with all the news when everything is overshadowed by President Trump’s incessant need to address every tiny criticism through Twitter. So here are a few nuggets you may have missed, young readers, in layman’s terms just 4 u.

Clean Coal!!! – If the Starbucks line seems a little long, or if you’re wondering why the Bible Study is cancelled this Friday it is because of CPAC. The Conservative Political Action Conference is this weekend and President Trump is the keynote speaker. Sprinkled in between his promise of a giant wall, the non-existent rising crime rate in America , Trump managed to coin a new term: “Clean Coal” is the future. Forgot solar panels and wind turbines, and get the miners back to work. Trump has discovered “clean coal.”

Source: Washington Post

America’s Bathroom – Would you rather reduce crime, have a few extra bucks in your pocket, OR are you more concerned about the person pissing next to you in a public bathroom? Trump and the Republicans argue that the sanctity of the public restroom needs more protecting, and repealed a law set forth by former President Obama that allowed transgender students the right to use public school restrooms that match their gender identity. Instead of raising the federal minimum wage, which has proven to reduce petty crime and line the pockets of the middle class, Trump championed this repeal as a huge victory for his legacy. This is sleight-of-hand folks; the trick of a fraudster to get you to look away while he takes your watch and wallet.

Source: Reuters

Mattis Breaks from Trump – Defense Secretary James Mattis is one of the few picks from Trump that received little to no opposition. He is a highly decorated general that has a furious love of the US and he has just broken from Trump. The president is battling the media and has addressed any opposing news as “Fake News.” However, Mattis is not on board with this agenda and does not view the press as the enemy.

“I’ve had some rather contentious times with the press. But no, the press is a constituency — as far as I’m concerned — that we deal with and I don’t have any issues with the press, myself.”

Source: LA Times

Dakota Pipeline, Again – One of the first things across President Trump’s desk was an executive order that resurrected construction on the Dakota pipeline. Former President Obama had heard the cries of the Standing Rock Sioux, along with reasoning from other Dakota constituents, and put a stop to the pipeline. However, President Trump believes that the free flow of crude oil from oil rich Canada to refineries on the east coast is tantamount to economic growth. However, the real issue isn’t with whether Trump has the power, but about a conflict of interest. Trump owns stock in the pipeline developer, Energy Transfer Partners, and this action sets a precedent to question all of Trump’s orders. Another issue is that continuation of the pipeline requires a specific easement that was granted without a environmental impact study.

Source: CNN

Johnson Amendment be Damned – You would think that the Establishment Clause separating church and state in the 1st Amendment was enough to rid religion from politics. HA! You obviously don’t know about the crafty hands of Jesus, and then-senator Lyndon B. Johnson had to create a specific tax code that prevented non-profits from funding political parties. On the surface the repeal of the Johnson Amendment seems innocuous, but just look at the Tea Party and the Koch brothers. The political turmoil in the Republican party can be traced to Citizens United and how it paved the way for billionaires to donate their way to crafting their own agenda. Allowing churches, and other no-profits, to donate means that the agenda of a whole organization is capable of silencing the rights of the individual.

Source: New York Times