Comey, Comey, Comey. Yeah, that’s how you sell them books. That’s right...that was some weird shit. All eyes on Michael Cohen as speculation grows that he will flip on Trump. Former Trump divorce lawyer says that Cohen’s fear of prison rape will push him to flip. Those speculations come on the heels of the big Hannity Factor reveal as part of a Monday court order demanding the release of Michael Cohen’s third client. And, Rudy’s back! On Thursday, Trump tapped his pal Rudy Giuliani for his legal team after every other lawyer with half a brain gave Trump the cold shoulder. Giuliani pledges to end the Mueller investigation in a couple of weeks.
Teachers continue to upend the poisoned apple cart. Yesterday, Arizona teachers voted to walk out of school beginning on April 26. Teachers rejected a carrot of 20% pay raises, demanding significant increases in school funding. Colorado teachers stage a huge rally in the state Capitol on Monday. Teachers in the two largest school districts - Denver and Jeffco - plan on back-to-back walkouts on April 26 and 27 for major rallies at the state Capitol for increased school funding. At this point, it is not known how many other school districts will join in the walkouts. And, after Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin told the world that he “guaranteed” that students were sexually assaulted, physically harmed, ingested poison and/or were introduced to drugs for the first time b/c of teacher walkout he says sorry-not-sorry. Teachers and state Democrats reject Bevin’s non-apology.
According to a new article in the journal Nature, the Atlantic Ocean circulation has slowed down; it hasn’t been this sluggish in over 1,000 years. The “The Atlantic meridional overturning circulation” which brings warm waters to Europe and is largely responsible for Europe’s more temperate weather, is slowed by the melting of freshwater from glaciers in Greenland and elsewhere. Now would be the perfect time to read Kim Stanley Robinson’s Science in the Capital series. That trilogy plays out what would happen if the AMOC stops. Spoiler: it’s not good. On the other side of the climate ledger, NYC votes to divest city funds from fossil fuels. That’s freaking huge.
The Brennan Center reports that bills expanding voting rights now outnumber those seeking to restrict voting rights. That report came out right as New Jersey voted to enact automatic voter registration in the state. The new law will not register voters as part of motor voter registration. And Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach was held in contempt of court this week after he failed to follow through on the Court’s order to notify thousands of Kansans that they were eligible to vote in 2016. Kobach was, of course, the face of Trump’s voter fraud commission. Sweet justice.
Democratic billionaire Tom Steyer is barnstorming around the country, funding impeachment ads and progressive candidate forums (see: DesMoines Reg | Milwaukee Journal | CNN | PRI | WaPo). Steyer’s NextGen America hosts the first town hall in PA-7. Morganelli was the only Democratic candidate to not raise had when asked if candidates support abortion rights. And today is #NationalWalkoutDay - students working for greater gun control are walking out again across the nation on the 19th anniversary of the Columbine Massacre.
PA House passes a bill banning aborting fetuses with Down syndrome. Charlie Dent announces early retirement; will necessitate a special election BEFORE November under old congressional lines. Wait...did Daryl Metcalfe actually threaten Chris Raab with a gun? Some kind of State Street Capitol dual? Huge anti-gerrymandering rallies in PA Capitol. Activists packed the Capitol rotunda on Monday...crowds were as high as the fourth floor. And, Sean cracks into the establishment and begins writing for Third and State, a PA Budget and Policy Center blog. His first piece, “The Trump Tax Bill Wasn’t for You,” was published on Tuesday.
In today’s last call, space news is back! NASA and Space X launched TESS - the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite. Next month, NASA launch a new Mars Rover, InSight, which will the first-ever interplanetary West Coast launch. Billionaire Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced more details Tuesday about how his department will become "a one-stop shop" for regulating the burgeoning space industry. Says space already $300,000 business and expects to balloon to $1 trillion quickly. Moon will be a gas station for Mars. Mike Pence says the U.S. is getting serious about space junk. Bridenstine advanced to head NASA - BARELY. Questions remain about his use of a non-profit to benefit himself.
And Sean winds up his stint at Pizza Boy. We’ll take a few moments to remember the good times.
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