Our dystopia continues apace.
- Today, Vice President Mike Pence smiled as he cast the tie-breaking vote to allow the Senate to proceed with a measure that would repeal Obama-era protections for abortion providers. Prior to leaving the White House, President Obama ensured that states could not end Title X funding to family planning centers that also provide abortion (i.e. Planned Parenthood). Under a procedural rule called the Congressional Review Act, Republicans can essentially repeal any Obama-era regulations in the first sixty days. They, of course, went straight to defunding Planned Parenthood. Pence had to go to the Senate for two separate votes on the bill, first a procedural vote and then the second final vote, in order to cast the tie-breaker since Republicans were unable to convince Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Susan Collins (R-ME) to vote for the repeal. Pence did so with apparent glee. Sorry to every woman who, like me, lives in a red state; your access to family planning is about to disappear. [New York Times]
- Donald Trump’s deputy chief of staff, Katie Walsh, is leaving the White House to join America First Policies, a “flagging outside group that was meant to support [Trump’s] agenda.” [Politico]
- Here’s an interesting profile of Omarosa Manigault. [Washington Post]
- Claire McCaskill (D-MO) still doesn’t get it. [Talking Points Memo]
- Neither do Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Mark Warner (D-WV). [The Hill]
- Manchin said he will vote to confirm Neil Gorsuch. [Fox News]
- Donald Trump is having a fight with the Freedom Caucus. [The Guardian]
- When he’s not fighting with people who generally agree with him, the President, or at least people in the White House, are leaking intel reports to Representative Devin Nunes. [New York Times]
This has been Barf Bag.