Fort Worth police officer Courtney Johnson — whose charge of aggravated assault by a public servant for shooting a man who was holding a barbecue fork was dismissed last month after a mistrial — has been fired, police Chief Joel Fitzgerald said Tuesday.
Johnson, 35, was accused of shooting Craigory Adams by recklessly handling his shotgun on June 23, 2015.
“We found that these actions were careless and that led to an individual being injured and that’s something we can’t let happen,” Fitzgerald said.
A two-count indictment accused Johnson of taking his gun off safety and sliding the pump action back, then forward as it was pointed toward Adams. The shotgun fired, hitting Adams in the arm. The officer has said he thought Adams was holding a knife, but it was actually a barbecue fork.
In Johnson’s trial, the jury split 5-7, but it was not known which way the majority voted.
Johnson testified that based on information from the 911 call taker, he thought Adams was holding a knife. Johnson’s attorneys, Tim Choy and Jim Lane, maintained that the shooting was accidental but acknowledged that the case may have been difficult for jurors to understand.
“After review of the trial case, and the evidence produced at that trial, it is my belief that any subsequent retrial is unlikely to result in the return of a unanimous jury verdict,” a motion filed by District Attorney Sharen Wilson stated.
Adams, a mentally challenged man who was living with his parents, was outside holding a barbecue fork when he knocked on a neighbor’s door and the neighbor called police.
Johnson failed to identify himself as a police officer when he approached Johnson, said Tamala Ray, a Tarrant County prosecutor. Johnson drove up to the location of the call without his lights and sirens activated and gave Adams several commands, Ray said.
Adams dropped the barbecue fork and dropped to one knee, Ray said in her opening statement at trial.
Durham, NC — Bond has been set at 2.5 million dollars for a Durham North Carolina school resource officer accused of kidnapping a child and having sexual relations with her. Deputy Christopher Kelly, 40, was charged with, Statutory Sex Offense with a Child, First Degree Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, Second Degree Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, Indecent Liberties with a Child, Sex Acts with a Student, and Second Degree Kidnapping. He is currently being held for “safe keeping” in prison.
Kelly, who was fired at the end of April as a result of the charges, was the school resource officer at Northern High School in Durham. “I think like anyone else he’s nervous, he’s scared and he’s wanting to have his day in court,” said Daniel Meier attorney for the former officer who was allegedly supposed to have been protecting the students from someone like himself.
The teenage victim’s father said Kelly approached him, and much like an Uncle/niece type of relationship wanted to mentor his daughter. “It seemed appropriate at the time,” the father said discussing the relationship with reporters from Eyewitness News 11.
As The Free Thought Project has reported on numerous occasions, pedophiles will try to befriend the family of their targeted victim in an attempt to gain their trust, only to abuse their children later. According to court documents, the sexual relationship started in July of 2016 and lasted until April of 2017.
Kelly, who’s married and has three children of his own, had been with the Durham Sheriff’s Office for four years, and was considered reliable enough, apparently, to work with high schoolers at both Hillside and Northern. But placing Kelly into the schools has now turned into a scandalous mistake if these allegations against him hold up in court.
“I really have nothing to say to him (Kelly),” said the father as he seemingly choked back the tears and anguish.
Kelly will return to court on July 19th for his next appearance. However, if the charges against him are true and he’s found guilty, the damage to the 15-year-old’s life has already been done. She now has to live the rest of her life knowing someone, a police officer no less, robbed her of her innocence.
According to the Durham Herald-Sun;
Detectives discovered explicit photos on Kelly’s cellphone of a video “chat session” with a minor in which the girl is completely naked. An arrest warrant states Kelly did “induce and encourage a minor” to engage in sexual activity and take part in video chat sessions “in which the juvenile would perform sexual acts and/or the defendant would take part in sexual acts.”
Sheriff Mike Andrews released the following statement which reads in part;
When one of our own is accused of abusing the trust we work hard to earn, it is both disheartening and devastating to all involved. Our thoughts are with the family at the center of this ongoing investigation. The Sheriff’s Office will continue to work with the Durham County District Attorney’s Office, and we will respect the judicial system in the next phase of this process.
Kelly’s sick relationship with the victim goes back to the 2014-15 school year when he was a school resource officer at Carrington Middle School. It seems his infatuation with the victim led him to follow her to Northern High School where he served as an off-duty school resource officer even though he was permanently assigned to Hillside High.
Because this police officer served in three different schools, we are asking parents of children at those three schools to speak with their children about Kelly. If there are other victims out there, now’s the time to come forward. If your daughter or son was a student at Carrington Middle, Hillside High, or Northern High School, take a few moments and have that hard talk with your child about pedophiles. As statistics show it is likely that there is more than one victim.
Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/pedophile-school-cop-kidnaps-rapes-15-year-old/
For the last several months, the narrative on Russia hacking the election has been slowly exposed as a massive farce. However, this week, that slow crawl toward death turned into a full on sprint as CNN, not once, but twice admitted that they’ve been pushing fake Russian news with no proof — for ratings. Now, joining in the magnificent fall from the fake news pedestal, the New York Times quietly admitted their ‘bombshell’ backbone to the entire Russian narrative was simply not true.
“Seventeen intelligence agencies” — if you’ve come across any of the Russian hysteria over the bogus hacking claims over the past 8 months, you’ve likely heard that little snippet repeated ad nauseam. It was the lynchpin to the case against Russia which was all started by Hillary Clinton back in back in October.
While most free thinking individuals saw it for the ridiculous assertion that it was, the mainstream media picked it up and parrotted it out over and over again to push their fake narrative.
Clinton’s “17 US intelligence agencies” may be the biggest, most immediately disprovable wopper ever intentionally made during a debate.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 20, 2016
As WikiLeaks comically pointed out last October, these intelligence agencies include domestic groups like the Coast Guard, DEA, and the Department of Energy — none of whom ever threw their hat into the ‘we support the fake Russian narrative’ ring.
Hillary Clinton’s “17 US intelligence agencies” include:
*Department of Energy
*Air Force recon
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 20, 2016
As Caitlin Johnstone eloquently points out in a post on Medium, despite the sheer insanity of these claims, many high-profile pro-establishment outlets like Politifact and USA Today found Clinton’s claims to be 100 percent true on the grounds that James Clapper, then-Director of National Intelligence and notorious Russophobic racist, “speaks on behalf of” all 17 intelligence agencies. To this day Politifact stands by its false claim on the basis of that same spurious assertion.
WikiLeaks went further last month and pointed out that the “17 intelligence agencies” fake talking point had been used thousands of times in multiple different publications — all as ‘proof’ Russia hacked the election. However, that real number was only three. And, even those three were made up of a loose cherry-picked handful of individuals.
3490 fake news stories that reported that “17 intelligence agencies” made US election hacking report when only 3 did https://t.co/QGaG47rzBL
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) May 8, 2017
In spite of this massive web of lies that 17 intelligence agencies all came to the same conclusion over Russian hacking being exposed as a massive farce, the media pressed on. Even Hillary Clinton herself took to her pulpit at the 2017 code conference last month to shove it in our faces once more:
“Seventeen agencies, all in agreement, which I know from my experience as a Senator and Secretary of State, is hard to get. They concluded with high confidence that the Russians ran an extensive information war campaign against my campaign, to influence voters in the election. They did it through paid advertising we think; they did it through false news sites; they did it through these thousand agents; they did it through machine learning, which you know, kept spewing out this stuff over and over again. The algorithms that they developed. So that was the conclusion.”
After the glorious admission by CNN that their coverage of Russia is mostly “bullshit,” the NY Times apparently felt the heat and didn’t want to face the same embarrassing fate. So, yesterday afternoon, on a four-day-old article, all the way at the bottom, in a single paragraph, the NY Times quietly admitted that it’s all a scam.
Correction: June 29, 2017
A White House Memo article on Monday about President Trump’s deflections and denials about Russia referred incorrectly to the source of an intelligence assessment that said Russia orchestrated hacking attacks during last year’s presidential election. The assessment was made by four intelligence agencies — the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the National Security Agency. The assessment was not approved by all 17 organizations in the American intelligence community.
As the Free Thought Project has continuously reported, there has yet to be a single shred of concrete evidence proving interference in the 2016 election by Russia. In spite of the mainstream media putting out stories of anonymous sources confirming Russian hacking, other than documents claiming it happened, the public has seen nothing.
This complete lack of evidence was backed up earlier this month during fired FBI Director James Comey’s Senate testimony, during which he admitted he’s never seen any evidence of Russian interference in the election.
It’s a lie and a dangerous one at that.
Aside from the mountain of admissions, exposed falsehoods, and half-truths swarming the steaming pile of horse manure that is ‘Russiagate’, even the president has proven he’s no fan of Russia. If Donald Trump was somehow put into power by Russia, why on Earth is he trying to start World War 3 with them by attacking the Assad regime in Syria? Also, why is the Pentagon, under his direction, forging a budget of $700 billion to amass troops and weapons in Eastern Europe to deal with the non-existent Russian threat?
The short answer to those questions is that Donald Trump benefits from this hysteria. It makes him look like the victim of a witch hunt while he gets to continue the foreign policy of his predecessors, Barack Obama and George Bush. As Vladimir Putin previously pointed out, Trump is merely a puppet and it matters not which puppet is in power — the machine marches on.
The establishment deals in a very addictive drug called distraction — and American citizens are junkies for it. While the divide and conquer tactics keep the citizens fighting over superficial and irrelevant issues, the status quo marches on, laying waste to everything it touches — including entire countries and their citizens, men, women, and children.
Bangkok, Thailand — A cop on the other side of the globe just showed the world that cops can actually stop a person armed with a knife — without killing them. Not only was violence not used in disarming the man but the exact opposite — love.
In video after video after video, we see police needlessly escalate situations to deadly force prior to attempting any heroic action, or even less lethal action, or simply backing up when confronted with people holding knives.
Mentally ill individuals have a 1,600% higher chance of being killed by police than anyone else, regardless of race. All too often, we see good people, who are in need of medical help – gunned down by officers because they ‘fear for their lives’ due to a complete lack of training in dealing with the mentally ill.
When the extremely rare case of police officers stopping an armed assailant without killing them is captured on video, the world needs to know. While celebrating the officer(s) who stopped the man without killing him is important – what’s more important is showing other officers and their apologists that it’s possible to solve these problems without deadly force.
The example below is one amazing way of stopping an armed man. And, while it is important to note that not all knife attackers will not respond in a similar manner, this officer clearly assessed the threat and made the decision to spare a life instead of end it.
Behold the power of love.
According to a report in Nine News, the name of the police officer is Anirut Malee, and the assailant is a former musician, who at present is employed as a security guard.
Anirut told Thai Visa News: ‘He used to be a musician but had been working as a security guard for three days and had not been paid. On top of this, he had had his guitar stolen and it was all stressing him out.
Nine News states that Malee while speaking to Sanook News said that the man was very anxious after not being been paid for three days. “I heard him out and sympathized and said I had a guitar to give him, and suggested we go out for a meal together,” Mr. Malee said.
Instead of being killed for his poor decision, the unnamed assailant was sent to a hospital for an evaluation of his mental state and no charges were reported.
Video of the incident has since gone incredibly viral, and for good reason.
To those that don’t think this sort of approach is possible in America. Think again.
The Free Thought Project has actually reported on it.
David Bundy, 39-year-old Roanoke Rapids resident, called 911 in 2015, and said that he had been “hearing voices” and was feeling suicidal. An officer soon arrived at his home, where the man answered the door armed with a knife. The events were all caught on the officer’s body cam. Officer Jamie Hardy first calmly talks to the troubled man, and then uses minimal force to subdue and disarm Mr. Bundy, who is then put into protective custody — which, for once, was actually protective.
As a result, Bundy was able to take a step back from the brink, and now thanks and credits Hardy for saving his life. Not all people with suicidal thoughts are like David Bundy, and Lord knows not all police officers are like Jamie Hardy, but in this case—thanks to a body cam—we can see an ever rare video of a policeman acting like a true peace officer. More importantly, we see a man with a badge acting like a courageous but compassionate human being.
“Nobody wants to hurt anybody else…our job is, you know…protecting people,” Officer Hardy stated.
David Bundy and family had an emotional reunion with Hardy. Bundy was expressing his gratitude while choking back tears saying, “He…he saved my life.” Both of Bundy’s parents were so emotional and grateful they couldn’t get a word out as Bundy’s mother managed to give her son’s savior a tearful hug.
Roanoke Rapids Police Chief Charles Hasty told reporters
“It could have possibly been a deadly force situation, and those skills he used prevented that.”
Those skills were love and compassion.
Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/knife-police-station-hug-love/
Prior to this year, the state of Florida was regarded as one of the worst possible states to be caught in possession of cannabis. According to a 2009 analysis by former NORML Director Jon Gettman, no state in this country punished people more severely for minor marijuana offenses than Florida. However, thanks in part to a former Florida judge, all this is gradually changing.
By October 3, for the first time in its history, the state will issue IDs to medical marijuana patients. However, according to the former judge, the law doesn’t go nearly far enough.
Throughout the course of his career as a Florida judge, Doug Bench hated marijuana. He admits to locking up hundreds of people for this plant and did so because he thought it was the right thing to do. While it is too late for the now-retired judge to help those whose lives he likely ruined through the persecution of pot, he is taking actions to help countless others now and in the future.
When Bench was diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD, which can result in a slow and painful death, his life was saved after realizing the benefits of cannabis in treating his disease. Now, Bench has made it his life’s work to wake people up to the “70 years of lies” the US government has told the citizens about marijuana.
In a public forum on Florida’s Medical Marijuana Implementation earlier this year, Bench presented a powerful speech to note how the law simply does not go far enough to help those who need access to cannabis.
“I put 311 people in jail for marijuana offenses — and I was wrong,” the judge says as he opens up his speech.
“I’ve been haunted for 30 years, wondering how many of those (people I put in jail) were using cannabis for medical reasons because our government suppressed that information for 70 years.”
Bench then notes that it was his COPD that opened his eyes to the benefits of cannabis.
“I’m now an advocate for medical marijuana because two years ago, I was diagnosed with a terminal disease,” he explains, before going on to explain that his wife’s “four hours of research on the internet,” found the benefits of cannabis oil for COPD.
“I hated marijuana, I hated the use of marijuana and the violation of the law,” Bench explains. “But, I had no choice, I had to break the law if I wanted to live.”
At this point, Bench then advocates to let free enterprise handle the solution to medical marijuana instead of the slow turning wheels of the bureaucracy. Instead of a top-down system of the state running everything in regards to a plant that heals people, Bench advocates for a horizontal integration, allowing ease of access at all levels, not just those well-connected lobbyists with state ties.
“By the time you finally go (to the doctor to get medical cannabis), you need it now, not 90 days from now,” Bench said before calling out the restrictive nature of the Florida law.
“I think you should take the word ‘debilitating’ totally out of it,” said Bench. “What I had, COPD, a terminal disease, is not on your list.”
“I’d be dead if I had to treat under this mandate of Florida law.”
The heroism and humility shown by Doug Bench are inspiring, to say the least. If a tiny fraction of the people within law enforcement and government had half of this man’s gumption, the drug war would be over tomorrow and people who can benefit from cannabis would have access immediately.
The Free Thought Project salutes you, Judge Doug Bench. Please share this article to show others how change is possible and even the most staunch drug warriors, who “hate marijuana,” have the ability to change.
Please share this article to show others how change is possible and even the most staunch drug warriors, who “hate marijuana,” have the ability to change.
Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/judge-haunted-cannabis-saved-life/
Versailles, MO — Nearly two years after Trooper Anthony Piercy was charged in the death of Brandon Ellingson, who drowned in the Lake of the Ozarks with his hands cuffed behind his back, the case has been closed. Predictably, the offending officer is getting off with less than a slap on the wrist.
For handcuffing a college student, negligently casting him into a lake, and watching as he drowned, Trooper Piercy pleaded guilty to a simple boating violation.
On May 31, 2014. Trooper Piercy arrested Ellingson under suspicion of OWI and negligently placed the wrong life jacket over the handcuffed 20-year-old’s torso. Piercy then drove his patrol boat away from the scene at a high rate of speed. Ellingson was thrown from the craft when it struck a sizeable wake, the life jacket came off, and he drowned with his hands still in cuffs while Piercy callously watched on.
“He’s an evil person,” Ellingson’s father Craig told The Daily Beast on Wednesday. “The reason we decided to go to the plea deal was it was tainted down there,” in Morgan County, Missouri’s court system.
During the investigation, it was determined that Piercy did little to nothing as he watched Ellingson drown.
As the Beast reports:
Piercy did not jump in to save him.
When a bachelorette party passed on a nearby boat, the passengers threw Ellingson a life ring “but they didn’t know my son was handcuffed,” Craig said. “Piercy didn’t say he was handcuffed.”
The women told investigators that they screamed at Piercy to extend a pole to Ellingson, which he did “but he knew he was handcuffed,” Craig said.
Piercy did not call a supervisor for help until an hour after Ellingson drowned. Footage from his boat shows Piercy having a chillingly casual conversation with his colleague, referring to Ellingson in profane terms.
“I’m banged up a little bit, but I’m alright. I don’t know if I’m sore from treading water with the bastard,” Piercy told a supervisor of the dead 20-year-old.
As The Free Thought Project previously reported, following the familiar full-court press to prevent officer accountability, the jury in a Coroner’s Inquest ruled Ellingson’s death to be accidental. It was subsequently revealed that Amanda Grellner, the prosecutor who declined to file charges against Piercy, had received a personal favor from the MHP three years earlier when the department declined to charge her then-18-year-old son with DUI.
Last September, a circuit court judge found that the state had “knowingly and purposefully” covered up the crimes of Piercy, violating the state’s Sunshine Law in the act.
After seeing that they were getting zero help from the perpetrator and his subsequent conspirators, the family of Ellingson launched a campaign for justice. During this campaign, they were joined by Missouri Highway Patrol Sergeant, Randy Henry.
Henry witnessed first hand, the incompetence, negligence, and cover-up and took to exposing it.
“We killed Brandon Ellingson,” Henry bluntly told the Lake Expo newspaper, following it with the question of “Why are we investigating ourselves?”
In a conversation with Piercy the day following Ellingson’s death, Henry expressed concerns about how the arresting officer had conducted himself. Piercy himself seemed remorseful, telling Henry,
“I feel like I drowned that kid…. I should have done more for him.”
In any other context, that comment would be treated as a confession to second-degree murder.
Henry then filed a report on the drowning and testified about the inadequate training Piercy and other water patrol officers received.
During an interview with patrol investigators following the drowning, Henry mentioned a state law dealing with the safety of people in custody and how the police are responsible for the lives of those they detain. An investigator interrupted Henry and insisted that the recorder be turned off, to deliberately prevent an official record of his disclosures.
The stiff arm of blue justice moved in and now we are seeing the results.
Instead of Piercy being held accountable for his negligence, it was Henry who was then run through the gamut of the thin blue line. He was cast out by his department, demoted to corporal, and forced to retire.
Now, the man responsible for the death of a star college student is facing a maximum of a $500 fine and six months in jail. However, the chances of the officer spending any time behind bars are slim to none.
In fact, Piercy has already planned ahead if he gets sentenced to even a single day in jail. As the Beast reports, Piercy’s lawyer asked that Piercy be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea, should he be sentenced to more than probation. But after three years of fighting his son’s case, Craig said the closest thing to justice will be the opportunity to address Piercy during the sentencing.
“It was probably the best alternative, rather than have him walk free. This way we can sit in front of him and say what we want,” Craig said. “I’m a Christian. Ultimately, my belief is he’ll be judged by God.”
Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/ellingson-drown-boating-violation/
Writing interesting blog posts, creating attractive pages, and interacting with your visitors — these are essential ways to help you build a body of work, a successful business, or a growing audience online.
I’m part of a team focused on design and research at WordPress.com — I like to find ways to improve your experience, and to help you reach your website or blogging goals. In this post, I’ve compiled five of our favorite WordPress.com features that streamline your publishing experience and help you make an impact with your work faster.
Post Settings That You Can Hide
We’ve recently moved things around a bit in the editor. The settings for your post or page are now on the right — and can be hidden! Just click the cogwheel icon above your toolbar.
If you yearn for a more minimal experience, hide the post settings so you can focus on your writing.
Add Images in a Snap
Visuals make posts and pages more compelling. But going through the steps to add image files often takes time and interrupts your flow.
Did you know you can add images simply by dragging and dropping? Just drag an image file from your computer into the browser window and drop it in your post.
In the screen capture above you might have noticed a smaller, rectangular area on the right where you can drop your featured image. Many themes use featured images as header images or when displaying posts in lists. It’s an important image, if not the most important image, that you can set for your post.
A Visual Page Hierarchy
On WordPress.com, you can nest pages — a page can have a few “child” pages, and these child pages can have their own child pages, and so on. Many themes then use this information to display different levels of navigation. Super useful!
But until recently, it’s been a bit cumbersome to understand this hierarchy when working on your pages, and impossible to see at a glance. But not anymore!
At My Site → Pages, we now show the page hierarchy on the pages list (if you have fewer than 100 pages). This makes it much easier to scan your site’s structure and directly find what you’re looking for.
Change Your Slugs
When you give your post or page a title, WordPress.com automatically creates a slug for it. That’s useful, but if you’d like to change it, you can do so yourself by clicking on the chain link icon to the left of your post or page title:
You can shorten the slug or even rename it entirely. For example, let’s say you had a page called “Our Restaurant’s Menu” — WordPress will create it at “/our-restaurants-menu.” But now you know: You can make it accessible at the shorter and simpler “/menu.” Ideally, you do this before you hit publish, so that your readers will have the correct URL going forward.
Reply to Comments From the Posts List
For many of you, being able to interact with your site’s visitors is one of the most important aspects of having a website. Did you know you can respond to your comments all in one place?
Take a look at your post list at My Site → Blog Posts. If a post has comments, you’ll see a small chat bubble among the icons on the bottom right. Did you know you can reply to comments right from here?
Try it out the next time someone comments on one of your posts. And if you get a lot of comments, this is an easy way to streamline conversations and keep in touch with your readers or customers.
We work to make WordPress.com a bit better every day, and we hope that these tricks help make blogging, writing, and designing your site easier and faster for you.
Do you have a pet peeve — a small thing that you think could be made even faster, simpler, or just better? Let us know in the comments.
Source Article from https://en.blog.wordpress.com/2017/06/29/five-tricks/
WASHINGTON — Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., challenged President Trump on Wednesday to invite all 100 senators for a “summit” to hash out a bipartisan health care bill.
“President Trump, I challenge you to invite us — all 100 of us, Republican and Democrat — to Blair House to discuss a new bipartisan way forward on health care in front of all the American people,” Schumer said on the Senate floor.
He added that Democrats are “genuinely interested” in coming together with Republicans on health care, as long as Republicans abandon tax cuts for wealthier Americans and cuts to the Medicaid system.
Related slideshow: Protesters across the country oppose GOP’s health care plan >>>
Since the Senate Republicans’ health care effort suddenly stalled Tuesday, Schumer has been needling Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to scrap his bill and instead sit down with Democrats and work to improve the existing system. McConnell is reportedly attempting to hammer out a deal by Friday and set a vote on the bill when the Senate returns from its recess in July.
If McConnell can’t get his caucus in line, the Republican leader warned, he might have to “sit down” with Schumer as well.
Any real compromise seems distant at this point, though a handful of Republican and Democratic senators have shown a willingness to explore bipartisanship in the past. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Bill Cassidy, R-La., met with more centrist Democrats Joe Manchin, D-W.V., Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., in May before giving up on those talks.
For his part, McConnell has largely been wielding the specter of working with Schumer as a threat to get his fractious caucus in line. McConnell needs 50 of the 52 GOP senators to agree on a deal, and so far, about 10 Republican senators — moderates and conservatives — have refused to get in line.
“It’ll be dealt with in one of two ways,” McConnell said Tuesday after emerging from a meeting with Trump. “Either Republicans will agree and change the status quo, or the markets will continue to collapse and we’ll have to sit down with Sen. Schumer. And my suspicion is that any negotiation with the Democrats would include none of the reforms that we would like to make, both on the market side and the Medicaid side.”
Schumer, who is known as a dealmaker, would have a lot of leverage if McConnell failed to broker a deal within his own party and came to him ready to talk. As McConnell warned, any agreement with Schumer would likely not contain the changes to Medicaid and insurance exchanges backed by conservative lawmakers in both the Senate and the House.
Related slideshow: ‘Die-in’ protesters dragged away from McConnell’s office >>>
“We’re the first to say we want to sit down and talk to you about it, but we are not going to be in a position where we say, ‘OK, only 15 million people will be uncovered, we’ll support that bill,’” Schumer said Tuesday. “That’s not the type of compromise we’re talking about. They really need some structural revision.”
Working with Schumer would mean Senate Republicans had not only failed to repeal Obamacare — as they had promised to do eight years running — but even worked with Democrats to prop it up.
The leader of a conservative group who didn’t wish to be quoted discussing the Senate negotiations said he couldn’t imagine McConnell cutting a deal with Democrats because such a capitulation would anger the GOP base. “It’s one thing working with Nancy Pelosi to raise the debt ceiling — working with Chuck Schumer to stabilize the Obamacare markets is something else,” he said. “I think that would hurt Republicans badly.”
But Trump himself could theoretically shake up that calculus. If he were to take Schumer up on his offer, or showed interest in working with Democrats to fix problems in the exchanges, Republicans would feel pressure to fall into line. But the president didn’t seem interested in Schumer’s offer Wednesday, telling reporters, “He hasn’t been serious…He just doesn’t seem like a serious person.”
Read more from Yahoo News:
- Alaska eyes Obamacare replacements with skepticism
- School’s out, but universities are still fighting for their international students in wake of travel bans
- Can Democratic pediatrician Mai-Khanh Tran unseat one of the most powerful House Republicans in 2018?
- Reporter who exploded at Sarah Huckabee Sanders during White House briefing: ‘We can’t take the bullying anymore’
- Photos: Protesters across the country oppose GOP’s health care plan