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Trump administration plotting ‘backdoor cut’ to Social Security that will hurt people with disabilities

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The Trump administration is being accused of plotting a stealthy cut to Social Security that will make life more difficult for people with disabilities.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that a proposed change to Social Security disability benefits “would result in millions of more case reviews, likely cutting off many disabled recipients, if the changes are enacted.”

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Jen Burdick, a supervising attorney with Community Legal Services of Philadelphia, tells the Post-Gazette that the rule change amounts to “a backdoor cut to the program” that will cut people off benefits.

The proposed rule change would subject people receiving disability benefits to more frequent reviews, as hundreds of thousands of recipients would be subjected to reviews every two years.

“While a requirement to complete paperwork and submit documentation at the risk of losing monetary benefits and health care would be challenging for anyone, it is likely more difficult, stressful, and time-consuming for disability beneficiaries, who as a group are older, poorer, and sicker than the general population,” Barbara Silverstone, executive director of the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives, tells the Post-Gazette.

President Donald Trump frequently said during the 2016 presidential campaign that he would not cut Social Security benefits.


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Buffalo has a long history of protecting cops from criminal charges: report

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On Saturday, The Daily Beast documented the recent history of use of force in the Buffalo Police Department, which is reeling from controversy as two officers face assault charges for shoving a 75-year-old protester to the ground.

"As shocking as this all may be to outsiders, the shoving of demonstrator Martin Gugino and the defiant response of officers to an effort to discipline two of their own is indicative of the state of police affairs in Buffalo," wrote Jim Heaney. "Has been for a long time, not that you have to go back too far to find other episodes of brutality that have been captured on video."

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Internet disgusted after Buffalo first responders cheer cops charged with assaulting 75-year-old protester

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Commenters on Twitter expressed both contempt and disgust for Buffalo firefighters and police officers who turned out in front of Buffalo City Court to support two suspended police officers with applause and cheering.

Moments after officers Aaron Torglaski and Robert McCabe were charged with second-degree assault and then released without having to post bail, they were greeted as heroes outside the courthouse.

After a video was posted showing the celebration, commenters on Twitter vented at cops and firefighters for defending the two officers who assaulted the 75-year-old man who had to be rushed to a hospital after they shoved him to the ground where he sustained a head injury.

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Donald Trump’s lurch toward fascism is backfiring spectacularly

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

During the 2016 campaign, as Donald Trump railed against "Mexican rapists" and other "criminal aliens," pollsters found that the share of Americans who said that immigrants worked hard and made a positive contribution to our society increased significantly, and noticed a similar decline in the share who said they take citizens' jobs and burden our social safety net. After Trump was elected and began pursuing his Muslim ban, the share of respondents who held a positive view of Islam also increased pretty dramatically. I'm not aware of any polling of the general public about transgender troops serving in the military before Trump decided to discharge them, but Gallup found that 71 percent of respondents opposed his position after he did.

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