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While Trump Chums Up Putin, Students March for Our Lives

Can You Believe?

Can you believe Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee claiming that the Trump transition team’s illegal efforts to set up back channels of communication with Russia proves there was no collusion during the campaign? That’s like a burglar saying he got caught robbing your house today so he couldn’t possibly have robbed you yesterday.

Can you believe HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s shifting excuses for ordering a $31,000 office suite? First he blamed his wife; then he claimed there was “no harm done” because the order was cancelled after the public uproar over its extravagance.

Can you believe the continuing turnover on Trump’s Russia legal team? This week John Dowd is out, conspiracy theorist Joe diGenova is in, and conservative icon Theodore Olson refused to sign on. It’s tough to represent a client who has clearly obstructed justice and keeps doing it week after week. (To help protect the integrity of the Mueller investigation, please click here.)

Hits and Misses – the week’s best and worst moves

Hit of the Week: Senator Toni Atkins’s installation as president pro tem of the CA State Senate, making her the first woman (and first openly gay person) ever to hold that powerful post and the first Californian since 1871 to be elected speaker of both the Assembly and Senate. Toni is a warm, wonderful person and a master at bringing people together to do the people’s business.

Miss of the Week: Trump’s call to Putin, congratulating the despicable tyrant on winning another rigged election – without mentioning Russia’s interference in our election or its poisoning of British residents on British soil.

Hot House Race of the Week

In 2016, Jeff Denham (R-Turlock) barely won reelection while Hillary Clinton carried his 10th Congressional District. This year his race looks even tighter. Denham has proposed a balance budget amendment to the Constitution but voted for a GOP tax bill that adds $1.4 trillion to the deficit. He voted to bar the EPA from regulating the greenhouse gases that foul the Central Valley’s air. And his “A” rating from the NRA doesn’t rate so well with his constituents. This race is heating up – watch for a new PAC for a Change ad that aims to make it even hotter.

Finally…

Amid the unending chaos of the Trump era, let us take a deep breath and appreciate something truly historic: the movement of young Americans to turn the tide against gun violence. This Saturday, students and their supporters at the March for Our Lives will deliver a powerful message to powerful people in Washington and across America. Their message: Either you show some backbone, or we’ll show you the door. Stand up to the NRA and pass truly meaningful gun safety legislation, or we will organize to replace you with lawmakers who have the courage to protect our schools and our lives.