“You own this.” Dem challenger slams Paul Ryan for enabling Trump nuke threat

By Matthew Chapman   | January 3, 2018

Randy Bryce wants to remind everyone that if it were not for Paul Ryan, Trump’s war powers might not be so broad.

The political world scrambled in the wake of Donald Trump’s new nuclear threat against North Korea on Twitter, boasting that he has a “bigger & more powerful” nuclear button on his desk, in the latest sign of his total instability and recklessness.

But it is important to note that Trump and his “bigger button” would not be quite so dangerous if there was a legitimate check on his power. And House Speaker Paul Ryan refuses to provide that check.

On Tuesday, Randy Bryce, the steelworker and union activist waging an unusually competitive challenge to Ryan’s congressional seat, reminded everybody how Ryan is complicit in the Trump war threat:

Bryce is referring to an amendment by California Rep. Barbara Lee to last year’s Defense Appropriations Bill, which would have terminated the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force. This law, passed immediately after 9/11 and still in effect today, gives the president authority to launch military strikes effectively anywhere.

Lee’s amendment was advanced by the House Appropriations Committee with nearly unanimous approval from both parties, only for Ryan to order it removed from the bill without a vote.

In doing so, Ryan perpetuated the current legal and cultural framework that gives the president open-ended war powers.

Ryan has also repeatedly ignored calls from House Democrats to pass a bill that explicitly mandates congressional approval for a nuclear first strike.

If the day comes that a new world war breaks out, we must remember not only the president who pressed the button, but the man who sat by for a year while that button laid on the president’s desk.

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Trump Loves Bragging About The Size Of His Hands (Video)

Trump Loves Bragging About the Size of Things

President Trump *really* loves bragging about the size of things ?

Posted by NowThis Politics on Wednesday, January 3, 2018

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Doug Jones Sworn In, Takes Jeff Sessions’ Seat, As GOP Majority Narrows

Doug Jones Sworn In, Takes Jeff Sessions’ Seat, As GOP Majority Narrows
ByAlice OllsteinPublishedJanuary 3, 201812:10 pm
On Wednesday morning, Congress’ first day in session in 2018, two new Democrats were sworn in to the Senate, bringing Republicans’ majority to a razor-thin 51 to 49.

Alabama’s Doug Jones, after winning an upset special election in December over Republican nominee Roy Moore, becomes the first Democrat in decades to represent his state in the upper chamber, taking the seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and temporarily held by appointee Luther Strange.

Minnesota’s former Democratic Lt. Gov. Tina Smith was also sworn in Wednesday, taking the seat vacated by Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), who resigned in December following multiple accusations of groping and other forms of sexual misconduct.

Accompanied by his family and a grinning former Vice President Joe Biden, who campaigned on his behalf in Alabama, Jones took the oath of office from Vice President Mike Pence. Having Biden accompany him to the swearing-in was a breach of tradition, as new senators are usually walked to the ceremony by their fellow state senators. Smith, keeping the tradition, was accompanied by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).

On issues ranging from voting rights to immigration to health care, Jones could not be more different than Sessions—a hardliner considered to be on the far right fringe before his views were adopted and elevated by the Trump administration.

Though as a first-time officeholder Jones has no voting record, he staked out progressive positions on the campaign trail and has worked to demonstrate his commitment to them since the election. This week, he became the only Senate Democrat with an African-American chief of staff. He says his top priority is passing a long-term reauthorization of the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which Congress allowed to lapse in September and will lapse again later this year without a new bill.

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