First Lady Melania Trump kicked off the week by hosting her first Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs as part of her “Be Best” campaign which she began officially last May. The Working Group was created under President George W. Bush.
The goal of Monday’s meeting appeared to be more PR than action.
“First lady Melania Trump will add another component to her Be Best program by showcasing how multiple government agencies interact with youth and working with the groups to improve youth programs,” CNN reports.
Monday morning the First Lady, flanked by HUD Secretary Ben Carson and Matt Dummermuth, a DOJ official in charge of billions in grants to local law enforcement agencies, opened the meeting.
“Thank you for coming,” she told attendees, saying the mission of Be Best is “to enhance the lives of children everywhere.” She added that the “three pillars” of her Be Best program are, “well-being, online safety, and opioid abuse” – presumably meaning combatting and preventing opioid abuse.
First lady Melania Trump hosts a “Be Best” event at the White House to discuss youth programs and highlight the three pillars of her campaign: “Wellbeing, online safety and opioid abuse” https://t.co/s5XgPCmrVq pic.twitter.com/rcaM6j2G0S
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) March 18, 2019
The First Lady’s comments and commitment to improving online safety, and her promises to work to prevent online bullying are in direct contrast to the President’s daily outbursts, and especially what for him was a “lost weekend” of rage-tweeting. While the President does not drink his actions show an apparent addiction to venting his anger via the social media platform.
As many in the media have noted, President Trump posted 50 tweets or retweets over the weekend, attacking a re-run of Saturday Night Live, along with Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party, CNN, the Mueller investigation, the late Sen. John McCain and his daughter, the United Auto Workers’ union, General Motors and its CEO Mary Barra, and Fox News anchors. He also urged support for Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro, who reportedly was suspended after her Islamophobic remarks, and Tucker Carlson, who has been highly criticized for refusing to apologize for remarks he made supporting statutory rape and underage sex.
As the First Lady’s meeting was underway, President Trump, who has almost nothing on his public schedule today, continued his tweets of blind rage. He again went after GM and the UAW, unleashed attacks on former Vice President Joe Biden and the “The Fake News Media,” while praising his approval rating among the GOP.
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‘People Want to Play God’ Says GOP Lawmaker Trying to Ban Drug Used to End Dangerous Ectopic Pregnancies
Missouri freshman state Rep. Brian Seitz, a former Army paratrooper turned pastor turned music newspaper owner turned car wash manager turned Republican lawmaker knows a thing or two about God, having taught Bible classes for decades. On Friday Rep. Seitz defended his anti-abortion bill that would ban a drug physicians use to end dangerous ectopic pregnancies, saying, “Sometimes people want to play God.”
Seitz on Friday during debate on his bill said he knows what an ectopic pregnancy is and that it can be life-threatening.
(An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg is implanted outside the uterus. The egg is not viable, it will never become a living human being, yet can lead to the death of the mother without proper medical care.)
“Do you know how the treatment for ectopic pregnancies work?” Democratic state Rep. Keri Ingle asked Seitz.
“No I do not,” he replied, despite his wife being a nurse.
“Do you know that one of the medications you’re trying to outlaw is one of the main drugs given to unruptured [ectopic] pregnancies?”
“Right. Outlawed if used in an unlawful manner,” Seitz replied. “I want to outlaw the unlawful use of these devices,” he added, seeming to not understand basic legal principles.
That’s when it got interesting.
“Why are you even including ectopic pregnancies in your bill?” Rep. Ingle asked.
“Sometimes people want to play God,” Seitz declared. “Especially those that have women under some form of sex slavery or sex trafficking,” which has nothing directly to do with ectopic pregnancies.
Rep. Seitz has also said he “would like to protect” women who are victims of sex slavery and sex trafficking “by any lawful means,” but also strongly suggested he would like to take away their right to an abortion.
Rep. Seitz clearly wants to remove the constitutional right to abortion – or as many say, a woman’s right to choose.
But on other medical matters, Seitz believes in defending a person’s right to choose, even if it leads to the death of someone else.
“A lot of my bills have to do with freedom and liberty and those personal choices that you can make for yourself,” Seitz told The Missouri Times. “COVID-19 is a virus, I believe it exists, but how you respond to that should be up to you.”
“I would rather see personal decision-making be involved in how you live your life in reference to a virus,” he said referring to a virus that literally infect and then kill a person just by someone else breathing.
Missouri State Rep. Brian Seitz’s (R) bill would make it illegal to abort nonviable pregnancies that may be life-threatening to the mother. During debate, Seitz makes clear he doesn’t know how ectopic pregnancies are treated.
MO State Rep. Keri Ingle (D) had a few things to say. pic.twitter.com/gAQkvIdCGZ
— The Recount (@therecount) March 11, 2022
DeSantis Refuses to Divest Florida of $300 Million in Russian Investments – But Criticizes Biden Over Russia and Ukraine
Governor Ron DeSantis is once again mud-slinging while refusing to take concrete steps to address the problems in his own backyard.
The Florida Republican is refusing to divest the Sunshine state of $300 million in Russian-owned companies – investments it controls – while attacking President Joe Biden on Ukraine and Russia, as The New York Daily News reports.
DeSantis was notably silent for days after Russia attacked Ukraine but finally decided to weigh in – by attacking President Joe Biden while praising Trump.
On Monday DeSantis declared, “when Trump was president” Russia “didn’t take anything.”
“Hit (Putin) where it counts,” DeSantis also said. “The problem …. with Biden is that he has stepped on the neck of our domestic energy here in the United States.”
DeSantis also has not criticized Trump for calling Putin a “genius.”
The Daily News notes DeSantis “appears to be isolated among governors from both parties and across the political spectrum in refusing to take any concrete actions against Russia,” like divesting his state of its nearly $300 million in Russian investments.
“DeSantis and two allies, Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis and Attorney General Ashley Moody control the State Board of Administration,” the Daily News reports. “The SBA manages an estimated $195 billion in state-owned holdings, including about $300 million in Russian-based entities.”
The request to divest Florida from assets tied to Russia came from state Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, a Democrat.
‘Dumber and Smarmier’: Critics Slam Collins Over Announcement She Will Vote Against Tanden for ‘Temperament’
U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) Monday morning announced she will vote against President Joe Biden’s pick to head the powerful and important Office of Management and Budget (OMB), claiming she is uncomfortable with Neera Tanden‘s “temperament.”
Collins also claimed Tanden did not have sufficient experience for the job, as CNN reports.
Tanden has been president of the Center for American Progress for nearly a decade, and served within the Obama administration as senior adviser to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. She also served as associate director for domestic policy in the Clinton White House.
The Atlantic in 2016 also reported “Tanden was a key architect of the Affordable Care Act after serving as a top policy adviser for Clinton’s 2008 bid.” But it was her work drafting a public option for ObamaCare, later tossed, that may be the most threatening aspect of Tanden, not her “mean tweets.”
Indeed, Collins and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin both cited Tanden’s active and adversarial Twitter account as one of the main reason they will vote against her.
“Neera Tanden has neither the experience nor the temperament to lead this critical agency,” Collins said in a statement Monday. “Her past actions have demonstrated exactly the kind of animosity that President Biden has pledged to transcend.”
In a show of good will and a strong signal that she is very willing to work with Republicans, Tanden apologized many times for her tweets during her Senate Budget Committee confirmation hearing. She also deleted over a thousand of them.
Collins used that act of contrition as a weapon against Tanden, saying it “raises concerns about her commitment to transparency.”
Some of the tweets Tanden deleted?
These, about Senator Collins:
— KC Johnson (@kcjohnson9) November 30, 2020
But Tanden did not delete all her tweets about Collins. This is still up:
She is the worst https://t.co/Nwd1yhi8NG
— Neera Tanden (@neeratanden) September 26, 2018
Many are furious about what they see as Collins’ hypocrisy.
Susan Collins’ statement on Neera Tanden is beyond absurd. For four years, Collins barely made a peep over the most hateful, egregious, and violent remarks by Trump and his supporters. The idea that she would position herself as a moral arbiter regarding tweets is preposterous.
— Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) February 22, 2021
Susan Collins voted to confirm Kavanaugh, who got red-faced on camera as he screamed about inflicting revenge on the country, and who made a six-figure debt vanish while on a fixed salary, an act of financial magic that remains unexplained to this day. https://t.co/tQaRiaQOgn
— Max Kennerly (@MaxKennerly) February 22, 2021
@SenatorCollins statement about a bunch of things she had been completely ignoring for the last 4 years that are suddenly important again, for some unstated reason. #mepolitics https://t.co/tU7OqElyFA
— A Republic, if you can keep it (@GlennMorin10) February 22, 2021
Susan Collins on Donald Trump withholding congressionally approved military aid to a besieged ally in an attempt to blackmail their leader to interfere in an election: “I believe he has learned from this.”
Susan Collins on Neera Tanden: “She hasn’t got the temperament to lead.”
— Morten Øverbye (@morten) February 22, 2021
— Dr. Jason Cottrell (@DrJCottrell) February 22, 2021
So according to Susan Collins, a man who sexually assaulted someone and covered it up is fine to be a Supreme Court Justice.
But if you swear in a tweet, that’s just too much….hypocrite. https://t.co/J6ToAfp96l
— Liam Kent 🦞 (@l___kent) February 22, 2021
Susan Collins, longtime supporter of Known Polite Men Brett Kavanaugh, Donald Trump and Paul LePage, is once again deeply concerned about civility.
— Maeve Coyle (@maevemcoyle) February 22, 2021
“He’s a decent individual with a strong commitment to the rule of law. He’s a leader of integrity. I think the attacks against him are not well founded and are unfair.” Susan Collins at Jeff Sessions AG Nomination Hearings
— EPISODE 46: A NEW HOPE (@GScotttaylorva) February 22, 2021
Susan Collins, who didn’t bother reading T***ps tweets and excused T***p by saying he “learned his lesson,” suddenly reads someone’s tweets and doesn’t think someone can’t learn a lesson. Wonder why the change🤔
— Look here, Jack (@realworldrj) February 22, 2021
Susan Collins = still hypocritical trash. I don’t even care either way about Tanden, it is just the gall of it. Tone policing when she refused to do anything about the former President’s outright unfitness.
— graylola (@graylola) February 22, 2021
Hey @SenatorCollins remind us why you think Mick Mulvaney was qualified for OMB and Neera Tanden isn’t?
Remind us why you voted to approve manifestly unqualified DNI Ratcliffe?
— Ben_Franklin speaks by ventriloquist (@_Ben_Franklin1) February 22, 2021
It’s infuriating for Republicans to talk about temperament . Sen. Susan Collins wasn’t one of Donald Trump’s top supporters, but she supported a majority of his policy positions.
And Brett Kavanaugh had the temperament to serve on the Court?
Neera Tanden should be confirmed. pic.twitter.com/lgex6MoI5M
— Russell Drew (@RussOnPolitics) February 22, 2021
Image: Susan Collins with Brett Kavanaugh, who she voted to confirm to a lifetime appoint,kent on the U.S. Supreme Court
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