Sean Spicer Gets A Ride On The Nope Mobile

And the CBO reports sick people are having the worst week in Washington

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Thanks to his reaction after meeting Donald Trump, we now know what the Pope would look like if he arrived late to a movie theater and had to sit in the front row. CBO projects 23 million more uninsured by 2026 under Trumpcare, but let that be President Dwayne Johnson’s problem. And Ben Carson effectively said poor people are poor because they’re terrible thinkers, so don’t be surprised when federal housing programs are gutted and entirely replaced by giveaways of “Gifted Hands.” This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, May 24th, 2017:

CBO: 23 MILLION MORE UNINSURED BY 2026 - Yeah, but remember what Stalin said about a million deaths. Jonathan Cohn and Jeffrey Young: “Twenty-three million fewer Americans would have insurance under legislation that House Republicans narrowly passed last month, the Congressional Budget Office reported on Wednesday. The agency also predicted the deficit would come down by $119 billion over the next decade ― and that premiums for people buying insurance on their own would be relatively lower than those premiums would be if the Affordable Care Act stays in place. But the reasons health insurance would be less expensive for some aren’t much to cheer about, the budget report makes clear. Prices would come down for healthy people because those who are sick or have illness in their medical histories would have less access to coverage ― and the policies available on the market would tend to be a lot less comprehensive.” [HuffPost]

Also this bit, from the CBO report: “In particular, out-of-pocket spending on maternity care and mental health and substance abuse services could increase by thousands of dollars in a given year for the nongroup enrollees who would use those services.” [CBO Report] 

PAUL RYAN THRILLED: “This CBO report again confirms that the American Health Care Act achieves our mission: lowering premiums and lowering the deficit.” 

RNC: FAKE NEWS! “The CBO has a long track record of being way, way off in its modeling, with predictions often differing drastically from what actually happens.” 

COMEY GOT FAKE NEWS’D, TOO - Please tell us it was a dossier titled, “Hillary Clinton did what?!?” Karoun Demirjian and Devlin Marrett: “In the midst of the 2016 presidential primary season, the FBI received a purported Russian intelligence document describing a tacit understanding between the campaign of Hillary Clinton and the Justice Department over the inquiry into whether she intentionally revealed classified information through her use of a private email server… Current and former officials have said that document played a significant role in the July decision by then-FBI Director James B. Comey to announce on his own, without Justice Department involvement, that the investigation was over. That public announcement — in which he criticized Clinton and made extensive comments about the evidence — set in motion a chain of other FBI moves that Democrats now say helped Trump win the presidential election. But according to the FBI’s own assessment, the document was bad intelligence — and according to people familiar with its contents, possibly even a fake sent to confuse the bureau.” [WaPo]

NEVER MIND ABOUT THOSE FOOD STAMP CUTS - Joseph Erbentraut and Arthur Delaney:U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue faced heated questioning Wednesday over President Donald Trump’s new proposal to slash food stamps….Contrary to the budget, Perdue simply said that SNAP would be fully funded in the next fiscal year and that any changes would be up to Congress. ‘The legislative proposal going forward is obviously something you and all of your members in Congress will deal with and have your stamp on that,’ Perdue said. He also said he stood by his comment last week that SNAP isn’t broken and doesn’t need fixing. It’s true that presidential budgets are basically just suggestions, and that it will be up to Congress to set spending levels, but it’s hard to reconcile Perdue’s sunny outlook on SNAP with the Trump administration’s push to cut the program by $193 billion over 10 years, or more than 25 percent of the program’s projected cost in that time. One possible explanation for Perdue’s comment Wednesday is that he wants to pretend that Trump’s budget simply does not exist. A USDA spokesperson said the policy changes recommended in the budget would be considered by Congress when it next reauthorizes SNAP next year ― as in, not right now.” [HuffPost]

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MAN’S DEEPEST WISH UNFULFILLED BY DONALD TRUMP - Well, now Sean Spicer knows what it’s like to attend Trump U. Kevin Liptak and Jeff Zeleny: “At the most highly anticipated meeting on President Donald Trump’s first foreign odyssey, the ever-shifting pecking order of a tumultuous White House was on full display. Not seen was one of Trump’s most visible hands: Sean Spicer, the embattled press secretary and Catholic who was eagerly anticipating the meeting with Pope Francis...Those were the expected faces. But there were others there, too ― less familiar yet nonetheless critical to the West Wing ecosystem. Hope Hicks, Trump’s communications adviser; Keith Schiller, his former bodyguard; and Dan Scavino, his social media master, all stood solemnly as Trump greeted the Pontiff...Asked about Spicer not being included in the group that met the Pope, a source close to the White House said: ‘Wow. That’s all he wanted,’ adding it should ‘very much be seen as a slight.’” [CNN]

ITALIANS HATE DONALD TRUMP - 5/5 bungas for America’s commander-in-chief. S.V. Date: “As President Donald Trump makes his Italian debut in meetings with Pope Francis and government leaders on Wednesday, many Italians can already express their impression of the new U.S. president with a single word: ‘pazzo.’ ‘People think he’s a little crazy,’ said Benedetta Alabardi, a pharmacist whose store sits a few hundred yards from St. Peter’s Square. ‘The first impression is that he’s crazy and dangerous,’ said Orasti Gionti, a project manager for a telecommunications consulting company, who allowed for the possibility that Trump’s outrageous statements were an act. ‘Maybe he’s tricky.’ Fruit vendor Chowdhury Rafiquizzaman saw no need for any such qualifier. ‘He is crazy,’ he said. ‘Not only crazy, he is very crazy.’” [HuffPost]

Happy Wednesday. Here’s John Kasich speaking with 2 Chainz.

IJR is having a cutest dogs on the Hill contest and in the name of the fiery and unforgiving God of Content, you should enter it.

BETSY DEVOS CONTINUES TO MAKE AMERICA PROUD - At least she didn’t say that people should discriminate against LGBTQ kids like a business...yet. Jennifer Bendery: “Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said Wednesday that states should have the flexibility to decide whether schools can discriminate against LGBTQ students ― even if those schools get federal money. During a testy exchange in a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing, Rep. Katherine Clark (D-Mass.) told DeVos about Lighthouse Christian Academy, a private school in Indiana that receives state voucher money but denies admission to students from families where there is ‘homosexual or bisexual activity’ or someone ‘practicing alternate gender identity.’ Clark asked DeVos, whose budget seeks a $250 million increase for projects that include vouchers for private schools, if she would step in if that Indiana school applied for such federal funding. DeVos replied by saying she supports giving flexibility to states. ‘For states who have programs that allow for parents to make choices, they set up the rules around that,’ she said.” [HuffPost]

BEN CARSON URGES THE POOR TO THINK LESS POOR - Be creative, like the Egyptians, who made lemonade out of lemons and stored grain in their pyramids. Jose A. DelReal: “In an interview released Wednesday, Housing Secretary Ben Carson said that a ‘certain mindset’ contributes to people living in poverty, pointing to habits and a ‘state of mind’ children take from their parents at a young age. ‘I think poverty to a large extent is also a state of mind. You take somebody that has the right mindset, you can take everything from them and put them on the street and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there,’ he said during an interview on SiriusXM Radio with Armstrong Williams, a longtime friend. ‘And you take somebody with the wrong mindset, you can give them everything in the world, they’ll work their way right back down to the bottom,’ he said.” [WaPo]

TED CRUZ CAN’T TAKE A JOKE - Remarkable that a man who takes most of his social cues from Tracy Flick, Ralph Reed and the John Birch Society would be such a pill. Burgess Everett: “Ted Cruz called Al Franken ‘obnoxious and insulting’ for devoting an entire chapter to the Texas GOP senator in Franken’s new book titled ‘Giant of the Senate.’ Franken, who told USA Today that he hates Cruz in an interview promoting the book, has deemed Cruz ‘singularly dishonest and smarmy.’ Cruz, for his part, said that the Minnesota Democratic senator is just trying to goose his sales with the Cruz-centric chapter called ‘Sophistry.’ ‘Al is trying to sell books and apparently he’s decided that being obnoxious and insulting me is good for causing liberals to buy his books,’ Cruz said in an interview. ‘I wish him all the best.’” [Politico]

BECAUSE YOU’VE READ THIS FAR - Here’s a dog interrupting a newscast.

FIRST ADVERTISER PULLS ADS FROM ‘HANNITY’ - This never would’ve happened if Colmes stayed on. Lydia O’Connor: “Cars.com, the automotive classifieds site, said Wednesday that it’s pulling its advertisements from Sean Hannity’s Fox News show...The move by Cars.com to pull advertising mimics the start of a massive advertiser boycott that plagued Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, who was unceremoniously ousted from the network last month after after allegations of him sexually harassing female colleagues prompted protests and eventually led more than 50 companies to remove advertising from his show. “ [HuffPost]


- The first full-length trailer for the new “Game of Thrones” season.

- Where Navy ships go to die.


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