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Paul Ryan brags about gutting Planned Parenthood on International Women’s Day

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On Wednesday, House Speaker Paul Ryan held a press conference to defend Republicans’ health care plan, which was widely panned across the political spectrum after its rollout Monday night. Despite criticism that the plan would deprive millions of Americans of coverage, destabilize insurance markets and unfairly burden states, Ryan praised the legislation as “monumental, exciting conservative reform.”

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“This is what we’ve been dreaming about doing,” the House Speaker told reporters. It’s a “conservative wish list,” the speaker said. Ryan then ticked off parts of the legislation that should thrill conservatives, before concluding that it gets “Washington out of the business of being a nanny state.”

Unsurprisingly, Ryan’s pledge to stop nannying the American people stopped short of women’s health care choices.

“It ends funding to Planned Parenthood and sends money to community centers,” Ryan boasted. What the bill actually does is stop federal Medicaid reimbursements to Planned Parenthood—that means stripping the organization of millions in federal funds. As Vox pointed out, that would hit poor women the hardest but impact anyone that relies on Planned Parenthood’s services if clinics are forced to close as a result.

The idea that medical services offered by Planned Parenthood could be unloaded onto community centers is a popular conservative talking point. But in reality there are many problems with this plan, including the fact that community clinics don’t necessarily specialize in reproductive health services and are already burdened with more patients than they can handle.

Ryan’s pledge to defund Planned Parenthood comes on the same day as “A Day Without a Woman,” a nationwide protest highlighting the importance of women’s work. As reproductive justice advocates have long argued, women’s productivity is inextricably bound to having the freedom to decide when to start a family. Meanwhile, studies show that investing in women’s health has clear economic benefits.

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Michael Avenatti says he has El Chapo’s former jail cell — which the drug dealer described as ‘torture’: report

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Attorney Michael Avenatti, the colorful attorney who came to prominence representing Stormy Daniels against Donald Trump, is unhappy with his jail conditions.

On Monday, his attorney wrote to the federal judge overseeing his trial to complain about the jail conditions Avenatti is experiencing during pre-trial detention.

Scott Srebnick, Avenatti's attorney, wrote to Judge Paul Gardephe to complain about the "notorious 10-South" section of the Metropolitan Correctional Center, where he is being held in the Special Housing Unit.

"He is in a cell reportedly once occupied by El Chapo, on a floor that houses individuals charged with terrorism offenses," Avenatti's attorney wrote.

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It is Greta Thunberg vs Donald Trump at climate-focused Davos gathering of economic elites: report

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The starkly opposed visions of US President Donald Trump and Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg on climate change will clash in Davos on Tuesday as the World Economic Forum tries to face up to the perils of global warming on its 50th meeting.

The four-day gathering of the world's top political and business leaders in the Swiss Alps gets under way seeking to meet head-on the dangers to both the environment and economy from the heating of the planet.

Trump, who has repeatedly expressed scepticism about climate change, is set to give the first keynote address of Davos 2020 on Tuesday morning, on the same day as his impeachment trial opens at the Senate in Washington.

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‘Which Senator up this year most deserves to lose?’: Preet Bharara flooded with replies to provocative question

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Former United States Attorney Preet Bharara asked his 1.2 million Twitter followers a provocative question on the eve of President Donald Trump's impeachment trial.

With worries that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is presiding over a sham trial, many analysts have suggested that the Senate itself will be on trial.

"Which Senator up this year most deserves to lose?" Bharara, who was fired by Trump, asked.

There are a number of potentially vulnerable Republicans facing voters in 2020, including McConnell himself, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA), Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ), Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

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