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The internet spent the day debating whether Meryl Streep is talented and qualified to lecture about average Americans, but just wait until her detractors learn that she was playing Ken Bone the whole time. Mike Pence and his family, including their rabbit Marlon Bundo, flew to Washington today, though we can’t confirm whether or not Duncan Hunter paid for the rabbit’s travel. And while we’re on the subject, a much, MUCH better name for Pence’s rabbit would’ve been Chief Justice John Rabberts. With that out of our system, this is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, January 9th, 2017:
CHRIS CHRISTIE JUST CAN’T CATCH A BREAK - Jared Kushner, history’s most diabolical person that you can take home to mom and dad, is going to be opening up those nepotism laws. Christina Wilkie: “President-elect Donald Trump intends to name his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to the position of senior adviser to the president, multiple news outlets reported Monday. Kushner is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, and he played a critical behind-the-scenes role in Trump’s successful presidential campaign... If Trump is serious about hiring his son-in-law to serve in the West Wing, the president-elect will need to tiptoe carefully around a federal law that bars public officials, including the president, from hiring their family members for government jobs. Luckily for Trump, the White House may be one of the few places in government where the nepotism rules do not apply.” [HuffPost]
LITERAL CRAZY PERSON ADVISING TRANSITION - Unless the Trump team plans to Make America Great Again by tracking down anonymous women on the internet, we don’t really see why they would do this. Ryan Mac and Matt Drange: “An internet troll, who was once called ‘the most hated man on the internet’ and is banned from Twitter, is recommending candidates to serve in the Trump administration. Charles ‘Chuck’ Johnson, a controversial blogger and conservative online personality, has been pushing for various political appointees to serve under Donald Trump, according to multiple sources close to the President-elect’s transition team. While Johnson does not have a formal position, FORBES has learned that he is working behind the scenes with members of the transition team’s executive committee, including billionaire Trump donor Peter Thiel, to recommend, vet and give something of a seal of approval to potential nominees from the so-called ‘alt-right.’” [Forbes]
LACY CLAY TO DEFEND CONSTITUTION, REPLACE CHILD’S PAINTING IN BASEMENT HALLWAY: “Clay, Richmond & CBC Colleagues to Rehang Student’s Award-winning Painting in Cannon Tunnel ― ‘This is not about a student art competition anymore; it’s about defending the Constitution.’”
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WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE - How else can Trump nominate the guy who replaces Hitler in “Man in the High Castle,” if someone is holding the job? Ashley Feinberg: “Trump has ordered Under Secretary for Nuclear Security Frank Klotz and his deputy, Madelyn Creedon—both Obama appointees—to leave their posts, even if it means no one is in charge of maintaining the country’s nuclear weapons. According to our Energy Department source, Trump’s team has yet to nominate anyone to succeed them. Since both positions require Senate confirmation, if could be months before their chairs are filled. And the vacancies may extend beyond the leadership roles. ‘There are scores more appointees within the department,’ our source told us. ‘Secretarial and administration appointments that don’t require Senate confirmation, mostly performing policy, liaison, and strategic advisory capacities in support of the agency they’re at. They serve at the will of the head of their agency. Those people are, theoretically, also out on inauguration day unless otherwise directed, which hasn’t happened yet to my knowledge.’ The source later added, ‘I’m more and more coming around to the idea that we’re so very very fucked.’” [Gizmodo]
Jaime Harrison touted the following endorsements for his DNC chairman bid: Reps. John Larson, Marcia Fudge, Bennie Thompson, Sanford Bishop, former Reps. John Spratt and John Barrow, former Del. Donna Christensen, and DNC Members Donald Fowler, Kaye Lingle Koonce, Carol Fowler, and Clay Middleton.
It’s a real shame they can’t die before the next Census, y’know: “Senator Dean Heller, a Nevada Republican up for re-election in 2018, declined to say whether he believes the GOP plan will cover as many people as Obamacare. ‘I would anticipate nobody’s going to lose their health care for the next two or three years until the replacement is put in place. I think that’s pretty fair,’ he said. And after two or three years? ‘That’s a lot of prospective thinking,’ Heller said. ‘You can ask me in two or three years.’” [Bloomberg’s Sahil Kapur]
TILLERSON OVERSAW DONATIONS TO GLOBAL WARMING DENIERS - Alexander Kaufman: “Exxon Mobil Corp. promised nine years ago to stop donating to groups that spread misinformation about climate change. Yet between 2008 and 2015, the oil giant’s charitable arm gave over $6.5 million to groups that deny that burning fossil fuels is causing global warming, a new analysis shows. The analysis, which the advocacy nonprofit NextGen Climate put together and The Huffington Post independently verified, includes donations to industry associations, which tend toward skepticism on environmental concerns, and research organizations that openly oppose the scientific consensus on climate change. The Exxon Mobil Foundation donations are disclosed in publicly available documents, but they cast fresh doubt on the supposed shift on climate change that outgoing CEO Rex Tillerson oversaw in his decade leading the company. Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of state, will likely face scrutiny for his stance on global warming in two Senate confirmation hearings scheduled for Wednesday.” [HuffPost]
Examining Tillerson’s involvement in Iraq: ‘[T]he deal overseen by Tillerson...defied U.S. foreign policy aims, placing the company’s financial interests above the American goal of creating a stable, cohesive Iraq. U.S. diplomats had asked Exxon and other firms to wait, fearing that such deals would undermine their credibility with Iraqi authorities and worsen ethnic tensions that had led Iraq to the brink of civil war.” [WaPo’s Missey Ryan and Steven Mufson]
WE WOULD GIVE ALL OF OUR MONEY TO LIVE IN KELLYANNE CONWAY’S REALITY FOR JUST ONE MOMENT - O, to be unencumbered by the sadness and tragedy of this vale of tears. Alana Horowitz Satlin: “CNN ‘New Day’ host Chris Cuomo called out Trump for mocking a disabled New York Times reporter during a 2015 rally. But Conway insisted that’s not what he was doing. ‘That is not what he did and he has said that 1,000 times,’ she said Monday morning. ‘Why can’t you give him the benefit of the doubt?’ Cuomo shot back, ‘He can say it a million times but look at the video... he’s making a disgusting gesture on video.’ ‘Why is everything taken at face value?’ she asked. ‘You can’t give him the benefit of the doubt on this and he’s telling you what was in his heart, you always want to go with what’s come out of his mouth rather than look at what’s in his heart.’” [HuffPost]
JAMES O’KEEFE STILL DOING STINGS - Ryan Grim: “A left-wing political group released a new video Monday of a counter-sting that has uncovered evidence of right-wing activists trying to sow chaos at Donald Trump’s inaugural ceremony, an effort to portray critics of Trump who march against him as violent fringe figures. The counter-sting, carried out by The Undercurrent and Americans Take Action, a project of a previous target of provocateur James O’Keefe, managed to surreptitiously record elements of O’Keefe’s network offering huge sums of money to progressive activists if they would disrupt the ceremony and ‘put a stop to the inauguration’ and the related proceedings to such a degree that donors to the clandestine effort would ‘turn on a TV and maybe not even see Trump.’ To have riots blot out coverage of Trump, the donor offered “unlimited resources,” including to shut down bridges into D.C.” [HuffPost]
PRIVATE PRISONS FEELING BULLISH - Whereas their inmates are feeling, well, dead. Kelly Cohen: “The stocks of the two biggest for-profit private prison and detention center companies have jumped since President-elect Trump’s victory in November, as investors gamble that Trump’s tough talk about detaining illegal immigrants will mean more contracts for the two firms. If Trump follows through on his campaign promises to set up private prisons, Corecivic and GEO Group will likely stand to benefit. ... President Obama’s Justice Department announced over the summer it would phase out its use of private prisons. But detention facilities holding illegal immigrants weren’t affected, since those facilities fall under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security. In December, DHS said in a 23-page review that the use of private prisons for immigration detainees will continue, despite complaints about safety and other issues.” [Examiner]
We’re starting to understand why Andy Borowitz is popular: “Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa) on Sunday mocked the Democratic National Committee for being the victim of a cyberattack. ‘Walked to work past DNC HQ this afternoon. Nobody there - I guess they couldn’t ‘hack’ this cold weather!\’ the freshman congressman posted to Facebook on a day marked by below-freezing temperatures in Washington.” [HuffPost’s Igor Bobic]
BECAUSE YOU’VE READ THIS FAR - Here’s a horse with a rubber duck.
TRUMP SAYS INCORRECT THING, LOCAL COUTURE EDITION - Caroline Cunningham: “On Sunday night, President-elect Donald Trump gave a ‘heated’ late-night interview to the New York Times’ Patrick Healy following Meryl Streep‘s speech at the Golden Globes. ‘We are going to have an unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout for the inauguration, and there will be plenty of movie and entertainment stars,’ Trump said. ‘All the dress shops are sold out in Washington. It’s hard to find a great dress for this inauguration.’...Martha Slagle, store manager of the Neiman Marcus in Chevy Chase, burst into laughter when Washingtonian called to ask her about about Trump’s quote. ‘We have a lot of gowns,’ says Slagle, who added that between the Chevy Chase and the Tysons Corner stores Neiman Marcus has around 2,500 gowns in stock. According to Slagle, the Chevy Chase store is starting to see inauguration-related traffic, but she says the real rush will start this week.” [Washingtonian]
One D.C.-area boutique owner tells People Magazine: “There’s never been less demand for inaugural ballgowns in my 38 years.”
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@garyhe: “This is liberal trash” —person watching award show swept by a movie about two white people falling in love as they tap dance around a city
@Beschizza: Left: Intentionally falsified hoax reportage is Fake News and must end!
Right: All inaccuracy is Fake!
Center: Fake has lost its meaning!
In his bunker
The orange man sits,
Surrounded by the wreck
That was once a great capital.
In the distance,
A voice cries
”But her emails!”
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