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Betting Against Trump

The UK betting house Ladbrokes has just raised the odds that Trump will be impeached or will resign to 56%. The odds were previously close to even at 52%, but things seem to be getting worse for the embattled president.

And we may get our first official test of Trump’s failing popularity. Georgia will vote in two weeks to fill the congressional seat vacated by Tom Price when he joined Trump’s cabinet. Republican Price won that election in November by over 20 points, but just a few months later the leading candidate is a previously unknown congressional aide, Jon Ossoff, who is a Democrat. Ossoff has raised a stunning $8.3 million for his campaign. To put that in perspective, the only Congress critter who raked in more money from supporters in the November 2016 election was Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

Ossoff is running a campaign to “Make Trump Furious”. There are 18 candidates in the election, but polls show Ossoff with around 40% of the vote, which is far more than any other candidate, but not enough to avoid a runoff.

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Late Night Political Humor

[Jokes from Feb. 13, 2017]

This week Donald Trump took Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe down to Mar-a-Lago. They were eating their dinners when they received news that North Korea had test-launched a ballistic missile. This is a provocation by a rogue nuclear state, so President Trump immediately retreated to a secure location where he could be briefed on the details. I’m just kidding! – Stephen Colbert

This is the president’s second weekend in a row at Mar-a-Lago, the resort he owns in Palm Beach, where he played golf and dined with the prime minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe. So on Saturday night they got the news that North Korea test-launched an intermediate-range missile. They decided to work that out over dinner, at a table in the middle of the Mar-a-Lago dining room surrounded by members of this club. Instead of getting and up going somewhere private they continued to eat while advisers rushed back and forth to the table handing them documents alongside the busboys handing them food. They used the flashlights on their cellphones to read these documents, like old men trying to see a menu. And in the end, they decided to impose more sanctions and also to split a tiramisu. – Jimmy Kimmel

Other diners even posted Facebook photos of Trump and Abe looking at what one imagines are classified documents by the light of someone’s cellphone flash light. But I’m sure those documents are secure unless that cellphone flash light also somehow has a camera attached to it. – Stephen Colbert

This weekend at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, President Trump apparently discussed sensitive information about a North Korean missile launch in front of waiters and other guests. The guests said they won’t share what they overheard, while the waiter said [speaks in Russian accent], “No promises.” – Jimmy Fallon

Another guy posted Facebook photos of himself with the guy who carries around the nuclear launch codes, identifying the staffer by name. “This is Rick. Rick is the man.” Or more accurately, Rick WAS the man, until his identity was compromised next to the carving station. – Stephen Colbert

The guy has since taken down the Facebook post. And I can’t blame him. He only got 20 likes. A post about the nuclear launch codes really should have blown up. – Stephen Colbert

You know, if you’re going to hold a classified meeting in a public place, you do it somewhere where there aren’t any people. Like a RadioShack, for instance. – Jimmy Kimmel

Yesterday an official government tweet was posted for Black History Month, celebrating civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois. There were two problems with the tweet. One was Du Bois’ name was spelled wrong — and the other problem was the tweet was posted by the Department of Education. Now, I know Republicans don’t believe there should be a Department of Education but this seems like the wrong way to prove it. – James Corden

But it gets worse: They tweeted an apology for their mistake. It says, “Our deepest apologizes.” Well, apologizes accepted. – James Corden

I don’t know who at the Department of Education wrote this tweet, but whoever it is should have been held back a year. Or at least make them go back and repeat Black History Month. – James Corden

Have you seen the White House Valentine’s Day cards? These are cards like the ones kids give out in school, but each of these features a character from the Trump administration. We have Dr. Ben Carson, “Loving you isn’t brain surgery.” Kellyanne Conway, “My love for you is as real as the Bowling Green Massacre.” Steve Bannon, “Will you be mein?” Press secretary Sean Spicer, “Help me fake my death, Valentine.” That’s dark. – Jimmy Kimmel

Trump’s sons, Eric and Donald Jr., “Love is blind, unlike the trust we run for our father.” Vice President Mike Pence, “This is a totally heterosexual Valentine’s card between a man and a woman.” Vlad Putin, “Your love makes you weak.” First lady Melania Trump, “I almost love you enough to leave New York.” And finally President Trump, “I’m building a wall around your heart and making you pay for it.” – Jimmy Kimmel

Today the president was back in work in Washington, D.C. He met with the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Went OK. They shook hands for a reasonable amount of time, which was good. Am I the only one who gets nervous every time he meets a new world leader? It’s like introducing a heavily tattooed girlfriend to your parents. – Jimmy Kimmel

President Trump will reportedly have lunch with Chris Christie tomorrow. ”Just the salad, please,” said Christie when asked if there was anything on the menu he didn’t want. – Seth Meyers

Scott Baio said he is furious with Nordstrom for dropping Ivanka Trump’s clothing line. But mostly, Baio’s mad at Nordstrom for cutting his hours working in the stockroom. – Conan O’Brien

The Grammys were incredible — you want to talk about bold performances, CeeLo Green came to the Grammys dressed head-to-toe in gold. He looks like he escaped from a secret room in Trump Tower. – James Corden

He waved at me before the show and I was like, “Wait, am I at a science fiction convention? Did I go to Comic-Con by mistake?” – James Corden

You know that costume probably seemed like a good idea yesterday, and tonight CeeLo is still finding gold paint in all kinds of places. – James Corden

Adele was the big winner at the Grammys last night. But get this — after winning for Best Album, Adele said she thought Beyoncé should have won instead. Then Kanye was like, “Damn, she beat me to it!” and went back to his seat. – Jimmy Fallon

Last night at the Grammys, Adele started a tribute to George Michael but messed up and so she started over. She was on such a roll that she won the Grammy for Best Mistake. – Conan O’Brien

Adele won five Grammys while Beyoncé only won two. And if that weren’t enough, Adele then announced she was pregnant with triplets. – Conan O’Brien

During his performance with A Tribe Called Quest, Busta Rhymes referred to President Trump as “President Agent Orange.” Then the Secret Service said, “Great, now he needs a new code name!” – Jimmy Fallon

During their Grammy performance last night, rap group A Tribe Called Quest referred to President Trump as President Agent Orange. It’s the closest Trump has come to being involved in Vietnam. – Seth Meyers

Scientists are hoping to use quinoa to fight world hunger. After hearing this, hungry people all around the world said, “Actually, we’re good.” – Conan O’Brien

At an international tennis match, U.S. officials accidentally played the Nazi national anthem. White House adviser Steve Bannon was outraged and said, “We’re not rolling that out till August — c’mon!” – Conan O’Brien

The U.S. Army has officially lifted its ban on soldiers having dreadlocks. This is good news for the Army’s elite Hacky Sack Corps. – Conan O’Brien

Today was Clean Out Your Computer Day. And, if you’re a 14-year-old boy, use bleach. – Seth Meyers

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Privacy and National Security

Much to everyone’s dismay, Donald Trump signed the new internet privacy bill this week. Actually, it would be better to call it the “no privacy” bill. It overrules an Obama regulation that said that your ISP has to get your permission to sell your personal data that they collect.

So, how do you feel about the fact that your ISP can spy on everything you do online — including your web browsing history, emails you send and receive, what apps you use, and your geo location — and sell that information to anyone? Like, they could sell your porn browsing habits to your employer. Or if you log onto a cancer treatment center, notify your health insurance company.

However, turnabout is fair play. One group has started fundraising to buy the internet data for all members of Congress and publish it.

But getting rid of all restraints on companies has even darker implications. Here’s an even scarier example. A Chinese company that is partly owned by the Chinese government is trying to buy MoneyGram, which is a major US financial services company.

Think about that for a second. MoneyGram is very popular with members of the US military for sending money. If you had all the data about their MoneyGrams, would it be very difficult to figure out which people are in financial trouble? Or depending on where they sent the money, maybe susceptible to blackmail?

And that’s the problem. People claim they don’t like government regulations, but sometimes getting rid of them can have disastrous consequences. That’s why I call myself a pragmatist. Life is not simple enough to be an ideologue.

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Burning the Truth

Tom Tomorrow
© Tom Tomorrow

I don’t think anyone believes anything Sean Spicer says any more. But what’s really ironic about this is that in order to support Trump, people have to be willing to not believe anything Spicer, Trump, or anyone else in his administration says. Or else, they have to just pick and choose what they believe, while completely ignoring the rest. It’s a whole new form of willing suspension of disbelief!

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Unhealthy Entrepreneurship?

Despite their recent failure, efforts to repeal Obamacare are already negatively affecting our economy, including job creation. It’s the uncertainty, stupid!

For example, one person who has been planning on starting her own business says:

If Obamacare gets repealed, I’m anxious. What do I do? Right now, there is just so much instability. I don’t know how that will shift the market and what that will mean for health insurance costs in terms of small businesses … This could be the thing that deters us from moving forward.

According to an article in Health Affairs:

Lawmakers who dream of gutting the Affordable Care Act (ACA) do not seem to care about its importance to small business owners, particularly those who are solo entrepreneurs. What these politicians fail to understand is that the health care law is the first meaningful insurance reform available to entrepreneurs in decades. In fact, for many self-employed business owners, their firms would not exist without it. That’s why repealing the law is going to be a sizable setback for entrepreneurship.

Interestingly, this is happening at the same time that the meaning of employment is undergoing a profound shift. In places like California, more and more people are not working in traditional permanent full-time jobs. Instead, they are part of the “gig economy”, relying on temporary jobs, freelance gigs like Lyft and Uber, part-time work, and entrepreneurial ventures. None of these forms of employment offer health care and other benefits.

What this means is that the repeal of Obamacare (or even the threat of it) will result in “job lock” because people won’t leave their current jobs for fear that they will lose their health insurance.

And all of this points to a fundamental problem. In the US, health insurance is tied to big employers, in an economy where fewer and fewer people are earning their living that way. Indeed, our current health insurance system is an accident of history:

How did Americans end up with a system in which employers pay for our health insurance? After all, they don’t pay for our groceries or our gas.

It is time to separate our health insurance from our employment. For the sake of our economy, and our health.


© Ruben Bolling

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Late Night Political Humor

[Jokes from Feb. 9, 2017]

Today the East Coast was hit with a major snowstorm and it forced New York City public schools to close. When she heard that, new Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was like, “Hey, my plan’s working already.” – Jimmy Fallon

A snowstorm in the Northeast today caused many schools in the area to close. Said Betsy DeVos, “What? The school closures weren’t supposed to start yet.” – Seth Meyers

A federal court has ruled against President Trump’s travel ban, and at 3:35am Trump tweeted in all-caps, “SEE YOU IN COURT.” Then again, Trump tweets “SEE YOU IN COURT” to someone every day at 3:35. – Conan O’Brien

Florida firefighters yesterday rescued a man who was trapped inside a garbage truck. “Thank you!” yelled Steve Bannon. – Seth Meyers

Yesterday, without mentioning Donald Trump, Pope Francis urged everyone to build bridges, not walls. So today, without mentioning the Pope, Donald Trump said, “Francis is a girl’s name.” – Conan O’Brien

President Trump will host Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the White House next week. Are you sure that’s a good idea? That’s like your wife bringing Margot Robbie home for dinner. We’re not gonna hear anything you say for a month after that. – Seth Meyers

Nordstrom’s stock went up after President Trump attacked them on Twitter for dropping Ivanka’s clothing line. Then RadioShack said, “Would you mind attacking us?” – Jimmy Fallon

A recent study found that the number of monarch butterflies migrating to Mexico from the U.S. has dropped by 27 percent. Apparently the butterflies are afraid if they go from the U.S. to Mexico, they won’t be allowed back in. – Conan O’Brien

According to a new poll, 72 percent of Americans are either very concerned, or somewhat concerned, about climate change, while others [shows photo of laughing Obama kite-surfing] are just making the best of it. – Seth Meyers

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s office recently reported that it gets around 1.5 million calls from constituents per day, but most of them are just people asking him to push up his glasses. – Seth Meyers

Facebook has just added a new tool for finding help during disasters. Unfortunately, then Facebook shows you photos of your friends having a much better time during their disasters. – Conan O’Brien

Shaquille O’Neal says that he’s trying to eat healthier. He’s cut soda, bread, sandwiches, and fast food out of his diet. When asked what he’s eating instead he said, “Mostly trees.” – Jimmy Fallon

For Valentine’s Day, some KFCs are letting you send a loved one a heart-shaped bucket of fried chicken. And even better, if you really hate someone, you can send them two buckets. – Conan O’Brien

The Baltimore airport just got a gym where you can work out while you wait for a flight. Finally combining the two things Americans love most — waiting in airports and exercise. – Jimmy Fallon

There’s a fitness center at the Baltimore airport. So now instead of just sitting around during long layovers you can spend that time feeling guilty about not going to the gym. – Jimmy Fallon

Nintendo is releasing a video game that lets you simulate taking care of a baby. When they heard this, gamers said, “Hey, call me when you have one that simulates MAKING one.” – Conan O’Brien

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April Fools

Yesterday, on April Fools Day, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced on their Facebook page that they had set up an automated telephone switchboard for embassies. So the message that would play when you call them was (in English and Russian):

You have reached the Russian embassy, your call is very important to us. To arrange a call from a Russian diplomat to your political opponent, press 1. To use the services of Russian hackers, press 2. To request election interference, press 3 and wait until the next election campaign. Please note that all calls are recorded for quality improvement and training purposes.

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Doctors Prefer Single Payer Insurance

A new survey of US doctors shows that 48% of them are in favor of a single-payer health insurance system (like Medicare for all), while only 32% are against it, and 21% answered “I don’t know”.

What was especially interesting was that the doctors acknowledged that they might take a financial hit under a single-payer system, but they said it would be worth it because it would relieve them of having to collect money and deal with a plethora of insurance companies, each with their own rules and forms.

Duh. Doctors want to practice medicine and don’t want to spend their time doing aggravating paperwork and collecting overdue bills from patients.
As one doctor put it:

As a doctor, it’s really against my best interest to support single-payer healthcare. It reduces my earning potential. At the same time, it’s about human rights and taking care of people that need help—that is why I do this work.

Costs include the time they spend dealing with insurance companies: getting prior authorization from them, calling when their treatments denied coverage, changing prescriptions when the drugs they have prescribed aren’t covered.

And there are other costs for doctors. Because different insurance plans have different networks of hospitals, specialists, and laboratories, doctors and their staff have to spend hours looking for in-network providers. A single unified insurance plan would avoid that problem entirely.

And then there are costs due to fragmentation of health insurance. As people move from one job to another, often their insurance company changes. The same thing can happen even when they don’t change jobs, but their company decides to change health insurance plans. This can force employees to change doctors to one that is in their new insurance company’s network. In many cases, this will cause tests, procedures, and paperwork to be repeated.

The results of this survey are surprising, given that doctors in the US face a unique problem. Medical school in the US is very expensive compared to other countries and 79% of new doctors here face more than $100,000 in debt from their education. Doctors need substantial income to pay that debt off.

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Late Night Political Humor

[Jokes from Feb 8, 2017]

This morning President Trump actually went on Twitter to criticize Nordstrom for dropping his daughter Ivanka’s line and treating her unfairly. While Trump’s tweeting about a department store, a lot of people are wondering what the return policy is for presidents. – Jimmy Fallon

Sean Spicer said that Nordstrom’s decision to stop carrying Ivanka Trump’s clothing line is an attack on the president, and he’s also mad at Men’s Wearhouse, because he does not like the way he looks. – Seth Meyers

Five other retailers, including Neiman Marcus, also announced that they are dropping Ivanka Trump’s fashion line, while AutoZone announced they’ll no longer carry Eric and Donald Jr.’s hair grease. – Seth Meyers

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said today that Nordstrom’s decision to stop carrying Ivanka Trump’s clothing line is “an attack on the president’s policies and his daughter.” Well, that’s what his mouth said; his eyes said, “Help me, my boss is insane!” – Seth Meyers

It seems like every day Trump’s upset about something else. And I guess now — this is real — he is complaining that the hand towels on Air Force One are not soft enough. Then the flight attendant said, “Sir, that’s my skirt.” – Jimmy Fallon

Yesterday, Donald Trump repeated his false assertion that America’s murder rate is the highest it’s been in 47 years. Then someone pointed out to Trump that he was just binge watching “Game of Thrones”. – Conan O’Brien

Another big story is Trump’s travel ban. Earlier today, he defended the ban by saying, “Even a bad high school student would support it.” And Betsy DeVos said, “And thanks to me, we’ll have plenty of those.” – Jimmy Fallon

Last night, CBS anchor Scott Pelley began the evening news by saying President Trump is “divorced from reality”. After hearing this, Trump said, “Oh, great, now I have to start paying reality?” – Conan O’Brien

A Trump administration official said that whenever the media criticizes the president, they will call it “fake news”. And, whenever the media praises the president, they will call it “Fox News”. – Conan O’Brien

The latest polls show President Trump has an approval rating in the low 40s, which means he’s probably about to dump it for one in the low 20s. – Seth Meyers

Today is National Kite Flying Day. Why we have this in February, I have no idea. Having National Kite Flying Day in February is like having National Snowman Building Day in July. This is where the kite lobby put it. See, this is the sort of thing President Trump needs to look into if he wants to make America great again. – Jimmy Kimmel

In a recent interview, President Trump revealed he has only been sleeping four or five hours a night. While Ben Carson is still getting a solid 24. – Seth Meyers

Last night, Sen. Mitch McConnell silenced Sen. Elizabeth Warren using an old Senate rule. It’s the 1930s statute known as “No Mouthy Broads”. – Conan O’Brien

We’re now less than a week away from V-Day. Valentine’s Day is a test. It’s a test of your commitment, your preparedness, a test of whether you love someone enough to waste $100 on flowers that on any other day of the year would cost you $30. – Jimmy Kimmel

Even if you don’t spend a dollar for Valentine’s Day, you have to do something. Here’s a tip: If you don’t have money this year, you don’t need money. Go to the store and steal something. Show her that you’re willing to go to prison just to win her love or his love. Either way you’re going to prison. – Jimmy Kimmel

Speaking of prisoners, this should be an interesting Valentine’s Day at the White House. For instance, will Donald Trump get flowers from Vladimir Putin? We don’t know. – Jimmy Kimmel

And what about his wife Melania? Will they spend the night together or will she remain trapped like Rapunzel at their apartment in New York? Melania has a new line of greeting cards. They carry them at CVS: “Happy Valentine’s Day” (open it) “Save Me”. – Jimmy Kimmel

On Monday in Vermont, a barrel of maple syrup fell off a truck and spilled all over the highway. Luckily, it broad-sided a French toast truck. – Conan O’Brien

In North Carolina, a mother is suing a daycare center because one of the workers there breastfed her son without permission. Authorities say she doesn’t really have a case because her son is 32. – Conan O’Brien

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Settling for a Loser

In a presidential debate a year ago, when taunted about the Trump University fraud case, Trump flatly stated “I don’t settle cases. I don’t do it because that’s why I don’t get sued very often, because I don’t settle, unlike a lot of other people. You know what, let’s see what happens in court.”

Of course, we knew that was a lie. Trump had settled lawsuits more than a dozen times.

Indeed, in the same debate Trump also claimed that Trump University (even the name was a lie) had a “Ninety-eight percent approval rating” from its students and received “an ‘A’ from the Better Business Bureau”. But debate moderator Megyn Kelly responded that Trump U had a D-minus rating. After a commercial break, Trump waved a piece of paper and claiming “The Better Business Bureau just sent it” and “This just came in, we just got it.” But the Better Business Bureau said they never sent anything. And why would they have? Trump U was out of business and so their official rating is “No rating”. But the BBB added that “Trump University has never been a BBB Accredited Business.”

As for the “98% approval rating” the BBB said “During the period when Trump University appeared to be active in the marketplace, BBB received multiple customer complaints about this business. These complaints affected the Trump University BBB rating, which was as low as D- in 2010.”

And I haven’t even mentioned Trump attacking the judge in the case because he was a Mexican (even though he was born to Americans in Indiana). Or the many other lies he told about this case.

Well, the punchline of this sick joke is that Trump just settled the case, for $25 million. Students will get back around 90 cents for each dollar they spent on the bogus courses at Trump U. That is an unusually generous settlement, designed to make sure it would be accepted so the case would never get to court. Because it was pretty obvious that Trump would have lost.

In the end, it is us who have to settle for a less-than-honest president. And a loser and conman.

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Immunity

“Mike Flynn should ask for immunity in that this is a witch hunt (excuse for big election loss), by media & Dems, of historic proportion!” – Donald Trump on Twitter yesterday, after his former National Security Advisor (who resigned because he lied about meetings with the Russians) asked for immunity from prosecution. Normally, you get immunity only if you are willing to testify against someone else (usually someone higher up, like, you know, the president) who is even more guilty.

“If you’re not guilty of a crime, what do you need immunity for?” – Donald Trump six months ago, when he was repeatedly complaining about the DoJ granting immunity to people during the investigation into Clinton’s private email server.

“When you are given immunity, that means that you’ve probably committed a crime.” – Michael Flynn in September 2016, also complaining repeatedly about Hillary Clinton and her email server.

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The Government, by Any Other Name

Jen Sorensen
© Jen Sorensen

The whole meme started by Reagan that government is the problem keeps getting used for all kinds of excuses. Cutting taxes for the rich, getting rid of those pesky regulations that keep our air and water clean, privatizing prisons, you name it. The funny thing is that every time they do that, it is the richest of the rich who benefit, and the middle class on down are the losers.

Trump voters just must not have realized that he said that “we” would be winning, by “we” he meant rich people like himself. You know, people who made most of their money by cheating the little guy and bribing (via campaign contributions) the government to give them big tax breaks.

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Bait and Switch

After claiming that there was no Plan B if they didn’t pass Obamacare repeal last Friday, it is becoming obvious that Republicans had a Plan B all along. In fact, Plan B might have been their Plan A. Let me explain.

When the ACA repeal bill failed, Paul Ryan immediately said that “Obamacare is the law of the land” and “we’re going to be living with Obamacare for the foreseeable future”. Why would he say things like that? Do you think he would give up that easily? Of course not.

My guess is that the plan all along was to pretend to try to repeal Obamacare to make the base happy, but have the repeal fail. Then (as I’ve said before) quietly sabotage the ACA so that it fails. That allows them to try to blame its failure on the Democrats.

And today, we learned more about that strategy when Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price testified in front of Congress, and made it clear that he has the power to kill Obamacare. He can do this partially by just refusing to enforce some of the provisions of the law, most importantly the individual mandate, which would drive up costs tremendously. And partially by taking advantage of leeway written into the law, such as eliminating most if not all of the “essential benefits” or reducing cost-sharing subsidies. Reducing the subsidies alone will bring “significant premium increases” for consumers. “Some insurers will drop out, and the remaining insurers will have to seek large rate increases.”

In fact, just by saying that he might do these things introduces uncertainty in the market, which will encourage insurance companies to drop out of the Obamacare marketplaces. The CEO of one major health insurance company said that the cost-sharing subsidies are a major uncertainty hanging over his company’s ability to participate in the marketplaces going forward. Another uncertainty is enforcement of the individual mandate.

Price claims that he will will be doing these things in order to “dramatically lower the cost of insurance for Americans”. And indeed, if Price eliminates the “essential benefits” then insurance companies will be able to offer extremely cheap insurance policies, but those policies will cover almost nothing. The essential benefits that Price can possibly eliminate include emergency room services, hospitalization, maternity and newborn care, prescription drugs, laboratory services, mental health and substance abuse services, chronic disease management, vision care, and even preventative care. What’s left?

Allowing people to buy plans that do not include (for example) maternity care means that the cost of plans that do include maternity will skyrocket, because only people who plan to have babies will buy such plans, and insurance companies are not about to just absorb those costs.

Can we do anything to prevent this from happening? Most importantly, we need to make sure that Secretary Price cannot do these things without anyone noticing, and then blame Obamacare when premiums go up or insurance markets collapse.

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What’s the Big Deal?

First Trump can’t make a deal with even Republican congressmen over repealing Obamacare.

Now, Trump has now asked Congress for a billion dollars to build his wall. I guess he couldn’t get Mexico to pay for it. So much for his claimed deal-making abilities.

But wait, it is worse than that. A billion dollars will only cover 62 miles of the wall, and some of that will be repairing existing fencing. I can only imagine what it would cost for the entire 2,000 miles.

Anyone wanna bet that Trump wants this just so he can declare that he started building the wall he promised, and then he will quietly forget about it? A billion dollars is an awful lot of money just to sooth his ego.

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Late Night Political Humor

[Jokes from Feb. 7, 2017]

Today, the Senate officially confirmed Betsy DeVos as education secretary, with a vote of 51 to 50. Or as Trump calls that, “a landslide.” – Jimmy Fallon

Vice President Mike Pence today cast the tie-breaking vote to confirm controversial education secretary nominee Betsy DeVos. And if you don’t know what that means, you’re probably Betsy DeVos. – Seth Meyers

It was actually a 50-50 tie vote that was broken by the vice president. Which makes the vote for education secretary the only place where a 51 is a passing grade. – Jimmy Fallon

The Senate confirmed Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Now, there are 100 senators. She got the votes of only half of them. So her first act is to make 50 count as a passing grade. – Stephen Colbert

It’s come out that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who many think is unqualified, gave big contributions to half the Republican Senators who voted for her. Or as Betsy DeVos calls it, “75 percent of them”. – Conan O’Brien

DeVos, our secretary of education, has never attended, worked in, or sent her kids to public school. So how did she get the nomination? Well, there’s a tiny chance that money played a role, since DeVos’ family gave around $200 million to Republican causes, including donations to four senators on the committee overseeing her confirmation. Oooh, that reminds me of a math problem! “Betsy has $200 million. She needs 50 votes. How much money can she give to each senator to make sure public schools get less?” – Stephen Colbert

In Washington today, there was no victory parade for President Trump’s pick to run the Department of Education. The Democrats pulled an all-nighter in the Senate to try to get one more Republican to vote against her. They could not do that and Betsy DeVos squeaked in 51-50, which is terrible news for Democrats and even worse news for grizzly bears. – Jimmy Kimmel

President Trump claimed that the media is not reporting on acts of terrorism on American soil. In response, the media said, “Actually, we think we’re covering your presidency quite well.” – Conan O’Brien

President Trump is mad as a hornet. He tweeted this morning, “I don’t know Putin, have no deals in Russia, and the haters are going crazy. Yet Obama can make a deal with Iran, #1 in terror, no problem.” You know, there actually was a time in our history when if a president used the phrase “haters are going crazy,” we might be alarmed. We might even be told to remain in our homes if the haters were going crazy. – Jimmy Kimmel

Vladimir Putin is scheduled to play an exhibition hockey game against former professional hockey players. Putin is scheduled to win by 12 goals. – Conan O’Brien

Steve Bannon is Donald Trump’s senior strategist. A lot of people are saying that he’s the guy really running the White House, but I’m not sure I believe that, because there’s no proof that anyone’s running the White House right now. – Stephen Colbert

The list is loaded with typos, like “attaker” instead of “attacker” and “Denmakr” instead of “Denmark.” So at least we know Steve Bannon isn’t a grammar Nazi. – Stephen Colbert

According to a new survey, almost a third of people say their co-workers spend more time talking about politics than business. “Thank God that’s not the case where I work,” said Mike Pence. – Seth Meyers

At a closed-door meeting, some Republicans said they fear for their physical safety if they repeal Obamacare. In other words, Republicans are now in the awkward position of needing Obamacare if they get rid of Obamacare. – Conan O’Brien

New research predicts that in 65 billion years, the moon will crash into the Earth. After hearing this, half of America said, “Hey, can we move that up a bit? How about Wednesday?” – Conan O’Brien

The news is currently that spinning image of a newspaper, but it never stops spinning. – Conan O’Brien

Billionaire Richard Branson recently released a video of former President Obama kite-surfing with him in the Virgin Islands. Hey, man, I get that you don’t have to deal with all this anymore, but could you not rub it in? This is why people un-friend their exes on Facebook. – Seth Meyers

This is what President Obama has been up to: kite surfing in the Virgin Islands with Richard Branson. [shows photos of kite-surfing, laughing Obama] Look at him, not an Obama care in the world. – Jimmy Kimmel

That is the smile of a man who had no idea he might not be allowed back in the country. – Jimmy Kimmel

Kylie Minogue won a legal battle against Kylie Jenner over the trademark of the name “Kylie”. Yeah, the judge called the case “not why I went to law school.” – Jimmy Fallon

Merriam-Webster dictionary added over 1,000 new words today, including the word “photobomb”. They didn’t WANT to add “photobomb”, but it jumped in at the last second and kinda ruined the dictionary. – Jimmy Fallon

It is a holiday in Boston because the quarterback for the New England Patriots, Tom Brady, declared it a holiday. I did not know he had the power to do that. He gave everyone the day off today. I don’t think the mayor’s even allowed to give people — has an athlete ever overthrown a city government before? – Jimmy Kimmel

What if he decides to use his powers for evil? You know, Tom Brady is gluten free, what if he makes everyone go gluten free? You order a lobster roll, you get a handful of seafood. – Jimmy Kimmel

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