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‘Trump Doesn’t Care About HIV’: Six Resign From Presidential HIV Advisory Council

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“The Trump Administration Has No Strategy”

Six members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) resigned this week, citing Donald Trump’s lack of interest or strategy to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Scott A. Schoettes, Lucy Bradley-Springer, Gina Brown, Ulysses W. Burley III, Michelle Ogle, and Grissel Granados all resigned from PACHA on June 13th, a decision that Schoettes, the Counsel and HIV Project Director at Lambda Legal, detailed in an editorial for Newsweek.

“As advocates for people living with HIV, we have dedicated our lives to combatting this disease,” Schoettes wrote, “and no longer feel we can do so effectively within the confines of an advisory body to a president who simply does not care.” 

Created in 1995, PACHA exists to provide advice, information and recommendations regarding programs, policies and research to promote effective treatment, prevention and cure of HIV and AIDS.

“The Trump Administration has no strategy to address the on-going HIV/AIDS epidemic,” he continued, “seeks zero input from experts to formulate HIV policy, and—most concerning—pushes legislation that will harm people living with HIV and halt or reverse important gains made in the fight against this disease.”

Schoettes noted that while both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders met with HIV advocates on the campaign trail, “candidate Trump refused, [missing] an opportunity to learn—from the experts—about the contours of today’s epidemic and the most pressing issues currently affecting people living with HIV.”

He further noted that Trump took down the Office of National AIDS Policy website the day of his inauguration, no replacement has surfaced, and that most importantly, “President Trump has not appointed anyone to lead the White House Office of National AIDS Policy, a post that held a seat on the Domestic Policy Council under President Obama.” (Obama, he pointed out, appointed someone 36 days into his administration.)

This is particularly troubling, he wrote, as “no one is tasked with regularly bringing salient issues regarding this ongoing public health crisis to the attention of the President and his closest advisers.”

Below, a current screenshot of the Office of National AIDS Policy:

Screen_Shot_2017-06-17_at_10.51.00_AM.png

“Because we do not believe the Trump Administration is listening to—or cares—about the communities we serve as members of PACHA,” the advocate wrote, “we have decided it is time to step down.”

“We will be more effective from the outside,” Schoettes continued, “advocating for change and protesting policies that will hurt the health of the communities we serve and the country as a whole if this administration continues down the current path.”

Schoettes’ full piece can be read here.

  

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Screenshot via The White House

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Trump Uses Crude Anti-LGBTQ Language – Aides Stunned by Obsession With Staffers’ Sexuality: New Book

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Donald Trump often asked oddly personal questions about staffers’ sexuality and made homophobic remarks about those he perceived might be gay, according to a new book.

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman’s forthcoming book, “The Decider,” reveals that Trump’s obsession with appearing to be masculine drives his startling behavior, such as a meeting early in his administration with vice president Mike Pence and campaign aide Jason Miller, whom he declared certainly “likes the ladies,” according to excerpts published by The Daily Beast.

“You know how sometimes someone turns out to be gay later and you knew?” Trump said, according to the book. “This guy, he isn’t even like one percent gay.”

Trump was preoccupied with speculation about who in his orbit might be gay, and often mocked Trump Organization executive Alan Marcus as “queer” and “bragged that he paid the executive less,” Haberman reported, and former employees said he would show off photos of women with whom he claimed to have know intimately.

“They also recalled Trump mocking gay men, or men who were seen as weak, with the words ‘queer’ or ‘f*ggot,’” Haberman wrote.

Haberman described one episode from a week before the second presidential debate in 2016, when then-adviser Reince Priebus asked Trump a hypothetical question from the point of view of a female transgender student about using the girls’ restroom — prompting a response that prompted stunned silence.

“C*cked or dec*cked?” Trump asked.

An unspecified individual broke the awkward silence by suggesting “dec*cked,” and Trump responded by making a chopping gesture.

“With c*ck or without c*ck?” he said, according to Haberman.

An adviser asked what difference that made, and Trump suggested that detail would determine how he answered the question.

“What if a girl was in the bathroom and someone came in, lifted up a skirt, and a schlong was hanging out?” Trump said, according to the book.

ALSO IN THE NEWS: Trump is ‘quiet quitting’ special master case after making ‘terrible blunder’: legal expert

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Watch: Cruz Only ‘No’ Vote After Railing Against Bipartisan Bill to Prevent Another Coup

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The Senate Rules Committee voted 14-1 to advance the Electoral Count Act, legislation designed to prevent another coup like the one led by defeated President Donald Trump, and Senators Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz, on January 6, 2021. Every Democrat and every Republican except the junior GOP Senator from Texas voted for the legislation.

The bill is even supported by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

But according to Sen. Cruz, who once bragged he was “leading the charge” to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, the bill is “all about” Donald Trump.

READ MORE: Trump Mocked for ‘Sidelining’ His New $3 Million Attorney: ‘Must Have Given Him Actual Legal Advice’

With so many stories published about the GOP’s efforts to keep Trump in the White House despite Joe Biden winning both the popular vote and the Electoral College by large margins, some may have missed The Washington Post‘s reporting back in March the shows “just how deeply” Sen. Cruz “was involved, working directly with Trump to concoct a plan that came closer than widely realized to keeping him in power.”

“As Cruz went to extraordinary lengths to court Trump’s base and lay the groundwork for his own potential 2024 presidential bid, he also alienated close allies and longtime friends who accused him of abandoning his principles,” the Post notes.

“Cruz’s efforts are of interest to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, in particular whether Cruz was in contact with Trump lawyer John Eastman, a conservative attorney who has been his friend for decades and who wrote key legal memos aimed at denying Biden’s victory.”

On Tuesday Cruz railed against the Electoral Count Act, which would make the January 6 attempt to overturn the election at least more difficult, as his fellow Republicans seemed to ignore his outburst.

READ MORE: Viral Video Captures Ted Cruz Fist-Bumping Republicans After Blocking Bill to Help Vets Suffering from Toxic Burn Pits

“This bill is all about Donald J. Trump,” Cruz declared, not realizing that he was indicting the former president by saying so. “And nobody in our lifetimes has driven Democrats in this body more out of their mind than President Trump.”

“This bill is a bad bill, this bill is bad law,” Cruz complained. “It’s bad policy and it’s bad for democracy,” he added, despite every other Republican on the committee voting for it and several Republicans voting for the House version.

What he did not say is that no Democrat has ever conspired to overturn an election and execute a coup.

Senator Angus King (I-ME) after Cruz’s rant, reminded the committee the bill does not “come out of the blue,” saying it is “a modification of a 150-year old law.”

“It’s not a new effort of Congress to intrude into the electoral process,” he said, taking a gentle swipe at Cruz.

“I watched this,” NPR’s Peter Sagal said of Cruz’s remarks, “and what’s remarkable is to the extent to which all the other Senators (with the exception of a mild correction from Sen King) simply ignore him.”

READ MORE: Ted Cruz Says He’s Opposed to Same-Sex Marriage Protection Bill for ‘Religious Liberty’ Reasons

He went on to note the bill “merely intended to clarify” the existing law, “which virtually everyone … has agreed is archaic and confusing.”

Despite all his bravado, the bill did advance out of committee almost unanimously, with the exception of Cruz’s lone no vote.

Watch below or at this link.

 

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BREAKING NEWS

Highly-Anticipated J6 Committee Hearing Likely Postponed

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Wednesday’s highly-anticipated hearing of the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack, the first one since July, and possibly the final publicly-televised event, will likely be postponed due to Hurricane Ian which is ravaging Florida.

The Washington Post’s Jacqueline Alemany and Josh Dawsey were the first to report the postponement. MSNBC has confirmed the likely postponement.

No new date has been scheduled yet.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.

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