Obamacare Repeal and "Replace"
Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) on Tuesday formally unveiled an amendment to the American Health Care Act, the bill to repeal Obamacare that Republicans tried to get through the House last month. The amendment, which HuffPost’s Matt Fuller first reported last week, is the product of negotiations among key Republicans, including Vice President Mike Pence. [snip]
... If enacted, it would allow states to re-create the conditions that existed before the Affordable Care Act took effect ― a time when insurance premiums were cheaper, chiefly because insurers didn’t have to pay the big medical bills of people with serious conditions.
At the same time, the new proposal leaves intact most of the initial bill’s big financial changes. Those include shifting the law’s health insurance subsidies, which would offer less help to poor people, and dramatically cutting funds for Medicaid, which would free up money for tax cuts for the wealthy. (our emphasis)Of course, these Republican slugs would exempt themselves and their families from the bill's most vicious features that they would happily impose on everyone else.
Trickle Down Tax "Reform"
President Trump plans to unveil a tax cut blueprint on Wednesday that would apply a vastly reduced, 15 percent business tax rate not only to corporations but also to companies that now pay taxes through the personal income tax code — from mom-and-pop businesses to his own real estate empire, according to several people briefed on the proposal. (our emphasis)Will the plan close the myriad of loopholes corporations use to routinely pay less than the current 35% rate?
... His plan would put off the difficult part of a tax overhaul: closing loopholes and increasing other taxes to limit the impact of tax cuts on the budget deficit.What about the effect on the budget deficit, that hobgoblin that's only a concern when a Democrat is in the White House?
... Most analysts say the notion that Mr. Trump’s tax cuts will pay for themselves is unrealistic. A Tax Foundation analysis concluded this week that, on its own, a 15 percent corporate tax rate would reduce federal revenue by about $2 trillion over a decade. To make up for those losses without raising taxes elsewhere, the economy would have to become 5 percent larger.Even the chief tax counsel for Sneaker of the House Rep. Paul "Lyin'" Ryan (R- Galt's Gulch) sees it as a magic unicorn endeavor.
Incompetent hypocrites in the pocket of big corporations and Wall Street. "Drain the swamp!" my ass.
The Noose Closes Around Flynn's Neck
President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, appeared to violate federal law when he failed to seek permission or inform the U.S. government about accepting tens of thousands of dollars from Russian organizations after a trip there in 2015, leaders of a House oversight committee say.
The congressmen also raised new questions about fees Flynn received as part of $530,000 in consulting work his company performed for a businessman tied to Turkey’s government.
The bipartisan accusations that Flynn may have broken the law come as his foreign contacts are being examined by other congressional committees as part of investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and potential ties between Trump associates and the Kremlin.Flynn, who finally registered as a foreign agent in early March but whose activities on behalf of Turks friendly with Russia were known to Rump's team during the transition, has already sought immunity from prosecution in exchange for his testimony (a request that was refused). What is important, beyond the immediate question of Flynn's potentially treasonous but certainly illegal actions, is how he connects with the nexus of Russian oligarchs and agents that have been actively cultivating Rump and many of his associates for years, if not decades. That, we believe, will eventually lead to the answer to the question "what do the Russians have on Trump?"
BONUS: A hopeful and serious sign -- April Doss, former NSA chief of intelligence law, is joining the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into the Trump- Russia connection.