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Major GOP revolt over Trump impeachment prevented by Mitch McConnell’s maneuvering: report

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After Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) released a draconian set of impeachment trial rules that broke his promise to abide by the standards used in President Bill Clinton’s trial, he appeared to walk back some of the harsher provisions, like the one allowing the Senate to reject evidence from the House and the one requiring all opening arguments be delivered within a two-day span.

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Some analysts, like CNN historian Tim Naftali, took this as a sign that McConnell has a weaker grip on his caucus than he is letting on. But according to Politico’s John Bresnahan and Burgess Everett, McConnell’s retreat was a tactical maneuver that ultimately helped him keep his party in line.

“These were concessions, but only the slightest of ones — and the shift gave McConnell further license to ignore Senate Democrats’ broader complaints,” they wrote. “With all 52 of his GOP senators united behind him, McConnell was able to defeat a series of Democratic amendments calling for more documents from the White House and other federal agencies caught up in the Ukraine scandal.”

“On the biggest issue — whether to call additional witnesses now, including former national security advisor John Bolton and others — McConnell refused to yield,” they continued. “At the Kentucky Republican’s urging, the Senate postponed a decision on that question until after the opening arguments, despite vehement objections from Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).”

“It’s McConnell 101,” they concluded. “The Senate majority leader plays by the rules, but he uses them as a weapon to help his cause as much as a restriction on what he can do. The only limits are based on what his members will agree to. And it’s nothing new to his adversaries.”

It remains to be seen whether McConnell will be able to prevent defections when the time comes to vote for witnesses. But for now, he has managed to head off a threat that could have broken his control over the process.

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2020 Election

Here are 3 winners and 3 losers from the 2020 Democratic presidential primary debate

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Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined the other leading Democratic presidential primary candidates Wednesday night in the fieriest evening of the race so far.

His presence on the stage drew fire from the other candidates, but it also seemed to change the overall tone of the debate, with more attacks, counter-attacks, and passion than was generally seen earlier in the campaign.

Here’s a (necessarily subjective!) list of the winners and losers from the fray:

Winners

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — Warren hit her stride right as the debate started by attacking Bloomberg for his record on the mistreatment of women, racist policies, and his tax returns. She repeatedly came back to skewer the former mayor, making herself the biggest and most notable presence in the debate. But importantly, she also continuously brought the discussion back to the issues she cares about — like expanding health care, environmental justice,  and consumer protection — while getting in digs at the other candidates on the stage.

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After bombing in #DemDebate internet changes Mike Bloomberg’s ‘death’ date on Wikipedia

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Someone online changed former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's information on Wikipedia during the Wednesday debate to say that he died on Feb. 19.

After being ripped to shreds during the MSNBC Democratic debate, it became clear that Bloomberg wasn't quite as prepared as the other Democratic candidates.

The Wikipedia article was also changed to indicate that his cause of death was Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

https://twitter.com/joshrobin/status/1230333066280886273

Bloomberg had several unfortunate moments, namely his refusal to release female accusers from nondisclosure agreements, he came out in favor of fracking, he blamed India for China's involvement in climate change, and many many more things.

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Internet slams ‘cringe-worthy elitist’ Mike Bloomberg for saying he’s too rich to use TurboTax

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At the Democratic presidential debate in Nevada, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stumbled after being asked when he will release his tax returns, when he suggested that he "can't go to TurboTax" because he's too wealthy.

Moderator: "You've said you'll release your tax returns, but why do Democrats have to wait?"

Bloomberg: "We do business around the world. The document will be thousands of pages. I can't go to TurboTax."

😂😂😂#DemDebate

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