- The Washington Times
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

It’s a simple question: Why is health care legislation so difficult for a nation rumored to have the finest health care on the planet? That has frustrated talk radio kingpin Rush Limbaugh as lawmakers spin their wheels on Capitol Hill and take potshots over the American Health Care Act, commonly called TrumpCare, released just 10 days ago.

“Why can’t we come up with an intelligent, really smart way that repeals this junk — we’re the United States of America! — and replaces it with something that makes utter common sense, that is rooted in fiscal responsibility and a little self-reliance, a little mixture of everything that the Democrats can’t afford not to support? Why is that not even an option? Why does nobody even consider it a possibility?” Mr. Limbaugh asked his 13-million-member audience on Wednesday.


“Why is the order of the day ‘it’s doomed?’ Because if it’s doomed — if this repeal and replace that’s being talked about right now is doomed, and it’s the first bill that President Trump’s trying, I’ll tell you why it’s doomed to failure. Because they want failure written all over Trump’s face and name in the first six months of his administration. They figure if they can do that, they can make the remaining 3 years irrelevant — if they can create the news narrative that Trump is an abysmal failure in his first big legislative effort out of the box. That is what is going on here, in my humble opinion.”

REASSURING FEDERAL MOMENT

An industrious man during the freak snowstorm that descended on the nation’s capital in midweek: that would be Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. The 6-foot-2 former Navy SEAL shoveled snow off the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, attired in a forest-green U.S. Park Police flak jacket and sweater, utility pants and hiking shoes.

“I used to complain about the grass being too long when I pass by a park in D.C. Now that’s my park. If the trash can is full, it’s my fault. It changes your perspective,” Mr. Zinke, told Benny Johnson, chief content officer for the Independent Journal Review, who accompanied the secretary on his snow encounter.

SCHUMER’S ‘SHAMELESS SPECTACLE’

There’s much drama leading up to U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation hearing next week.

“Hypocrisy runs amok as Democrats create fake standards to justify their opposition to Judge Gorsuch’s nomination,” declares the Republican National Committee, which is particularly unhappy with a floor speech by Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer on the subject. Now comes the warning that a biased news media could feed these “fake standards” to the American public.

“Democrats in the Senate and liberals in the media are ramping up efforts to torpedo Judge Gorsuch’s nomination,” warns Media Research Center President Brent Bozell, who refers to Mr. Schumer’s speech as a “sham press conference,” among other things.

“Will the media covering this shameless spectacle report all the facts or just take Schumer’s word for it? I know the media — hundreds of reporters — have been provided with the undeniable facts to refute Schumer’s vicious smear attempt,” Mr. Bozell cautions. “We demand that they accurately report on Schumer’s false assertions. If they do not, they are guilty of the worst kind of advocacy journalism and it will be yet another reason why the public should not believe a word they say, or print.”

10 ST. PADDY’S DAY TOASTS

In preparation for St. Patrick Day on Friday, IrishCentral — a U.S.-based news site — offers what it deems the 10 best Irish toasts. These are meant for everybody. And here they are:

May your giving hand never fail you.

May we all be alive at this same time next year.

May the Lord keep you in the palm of His hand, and never close his fist too tight!

May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live!

May the best day of your past be the worst day of your future.

Here’s to a long life and a merry one. A quick death and an easy one. A pretty girl and an honest one. A cold beer — and another one!

May your troubles be less, And your blessings be more. And nothing but happiness come through your door.

May your neighbors respect you, trouble neglect you, the angels protect you, and heaven accept you.

Merry met, and merry part, I drink to thee with all my heart.

Dung hills rise and castles fall, we are all equal one and all.

RACING TO PROP UP MADDOW

The “Big Three” broadcast networks could not get enough of President Trump’s 12-year-old tax forms, outlined Wednesday in a breathless report by MSNBC host Rachel Maddow that did not amount to much.

“Despite a complete lack of newsworthiness, the morning news shows of ABC, CBS and NBC on March 15 spent 20 minutes and 28 seconds speculating about President Donald Trump’s tax returns based on two pages that even they had to admit were ‘certainly not scandalous in any way,’” reports Mike Ciandella, an analyst for Newsbusters.org, a conservative press watchdog.

“It was so little payoff for so much hype that even CNN mocked Maddow,” he notes.

The report essentially revealed that Mr. Trump made $150 million that year and paid $38 million in taxes.

“Regardless of the lack of news, all three morning news shows tried to find a way to spin the non-story to make the president look bad,” says Mr. Ciandella.

POLL DU JOUR

52 percent of registered U.S. voters have a favorable opinion of President Trump, 44 percent have an unfavorable opinion, 4 percent have never heard of him.

40 percent have a favorable opinion of House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, 40 percent have an unfavorable opinion, 20 percent have never heard of him.

27 percent have a favorable opinion of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, 34 percent have an unfavorable opinion, 39 percent have never heard of her.

27 percent have a favorable opinion of Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, 51 percent have an unfavorable opinion, 22 percent have never heard of him.

24 percent have a favorable opinion of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, 38 percent have an unfavorable opinion, 37 percent have never heard of him.

Source: A Morning Consult/Politico poll of 1,983 registered U.S. voters conducted March 9-13.

Murmurs and asides to [email protected]


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