Ellie pointed out that a man in the news today is the spitting image of Governor Ratcliffe in Disney’s Pocahontas and I’ve been thinking about it all day.
- During a press conference today outside of his New Jersey golf club, Donald Trump continued to issue threats against North Korea. When asked about his “fire and fury” comment from earlier this week, he responded: “Frankly, the people who were questioning that statement, was it too tough? Maybe it wasn’t tough enough.” “They’ve been doing this to our country for a long time, for many years, and it’s about time that somebody stuck up for the people of this country and for the people of other countries,” the president added in a performance that was little more than a simulacrum of the tough talk foreign policy of the Reagan era. He suggested that North Korean leadership should be “very nervous” but would not elaborate on whether or not he was considering military action against the country. I liked it better when the White House’s North Korea policy was just Mike Pence staring in the direction of the DMZ. [The Hill]
- Here’s a helpful historical analysis of the “madman” narrative that underpins America’s nuclear strategy. [N+1]
- A day after saying that he wasn’t ready to declare the opioid epidemic a national emergency, Trump said he would declare it a national emergency. [Politico]
- Melania Trump has thoughts about the opioid epidemic. [NPR]
- According to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation, Trump’s erratic approach to healthcare policy has “led insurers to seek higher premium increases for 2018 than would otherwise have been the case.” [Associated Press]
- The White House and the Department of Health and Human Services have abandoned an Obamacare program that helped Latinos sign up for healthcare. [Talking Points Memo]
- HHS has curtailed funding to programs designed to prevent teen pregnancy. Those programs could be eliminated entirely if Trump’s proposed budget is passed. [New York Times]
- Meanwhile, Trump is fighting with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for failing to repeal and replace Obamacare. [Washington Post]
- “I haven’t given it any thought,” Trump said today when asked if he planned on firing Robert Mueller. [CNN]
- Here’s an interesting look at how the murder of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle—or as Trump calls her, “Beautiful Kate”—became the flashpoint for the president’s immigration policies. [Slate]
This has been Barf Bag.