Donald Trump told us on Saturday that he’d share his great secret knowledge of hacking either yesterday or today. Is anyone actually holding their breath? The New York Times published its usual Transition Briefing this morning, and there’s just so much wrong it makes me want to scream. Here are the bullet points:
■ President-elect Donald J. Trump appears to side with the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange over United States intelligence agencies.
■ Mr. Trump finds something “very strange” about his intelligence briefing on Friday — even though the White House says it was always planned for Friday.
■ Mr. Trump will hold his first news conference as president-elect on Jan. 11 – at least that’s the plan.
Yep, the man who will be dependent on our intelligence agencies spends an inordinate amount of time trashing them. He takes the word of Julian Assange over the results of their investigations. No chance at all that will come back to bite him. And us, by extension.
He’s now claiming that intelligence officials have “delayed” his briefing on the hacking until Friday, although those officials say that’s when it was originally scheduled. Something tells me he’s looking for an excuse to put off his great revelations, even though he already knows “things that other people don’t know.” Yeah, sure he does. The man doesn’t even use email. I bet he wouldn’t know HTML code if it bit him…well, you get the idea.
He also continues to exaggerate the “terrible things” that were discovered in the leaked DNC emails. No, Donna Brazile shouldn’t have given the Clinton campaign a heads-up on a debate question, but it had to be the most obvious question ever: someone from Flint was going to ask why the government wasn’t doing more to get the lead out of the city’s water? Who would ever have anticipated that? CNN fired Donna Brazile even though they kept former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on the payroll while he continued to stay in close touch with Trump and receive checks from the campaign for “strategy consulting”. Are we really supposed to believe he didn’t serve as a two-way conduit of information?
This is all part of Trump’s ongoing “project and deflect” strategy that served him so well during the campaign. He preemptively slandered the highly-rated Clinton Foundation with accusations that only turned out to be true of his own foundation. By the time the truth came out, he’d managed to convince far too many people that up was down, left was right, and right was wrong. It’s a strategy he has used over and over with great success. He took to heart the saying about a lie going around the world before the truth gets its shoes on, and we let him.
Of course, I – and the Times – have somewhat buried the lede that all this distraction surrounds his support for repealing Obamacare. For EIGHT YEARS, we’ve heard “repeal and replace”, but we’ve never been told what the replacement will be. Now Congress wants to “repeal” and defund but delay implementation for some undefined period of time. This make NO sense. It will leave health insurance markets in chaos and, more importantly, hurt the people who need coverage most. Speaker Paul Ryan says he wants to “create a transition and bridge so that no one is left out in the cold,” but he won’t tell us what we’ll be transitioning and bridging TO. What’s his plan, to repackage Obamacare (which had similarities to a Heritage Foundation reform plan until a Democratic administration implemented it) and rename it Trumpcare?
Whether or not you purchase your insurance through an Obamacare exchange, we all benefit from the end of lifetime limits and exclusions for pre-existing conditions. The ability to keep kids up to the age of 26 on family policies has been a great thing for many of us. These aspects are popular, but they won’t work without the less popular individual mandate – an idea that the Heritage Foundation championed until it was included in Obamacare. It doesn’t take detailed knowledge of the health insurance market to recognize that spreading the risk over a larger pool of people is necessary to help keep costs under control. Insurance companies *are* in business to make profits, after all, even if they claim to be non-profits (I’m looking at you, Blue Cross).
While I think it’s important to call out Donald Trump’s lies and misrepresentations and whatever the Wall Street Journal decides to call them, the most important thing to do today is to call your Congress members and tell them you oppose the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, at least without a legitimate plan to replace it. Don’t know the numbers? Click HERE and HERE to find them. It’s just a couple minutes out of your day that might make a big difference. At least it will be more productive than sitting around waiting for Trump’s promised press conference.