Both Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden, former rivals in the White House, spent an hour together in the Oval Office. They were negotiating a compromise they could both live with.
As the senator spoke, the centrist president listened. Sanders passionately argued that Biden should make even more infrastructure investments and include his long-held goal of Medicare seniors receiving vision, hearing, and dental benefits. According to a White House senior aide and another person who was familiar with the private session, Sanders gave his full support.
The deal was a result of mutual trust and shared interest — notably to assist the working class but also to demonstrate that government can work and maybe to restore faith in democracy following the Trump turbulent times.
“We are making progress in moving forward with the most consequential piece of legislation passed for working people since the 1930s,” Sanders told The Associated Press a few days later, as Biden made his way to Capitol Hill to rally senators on the plan.
It is an unlikely but understandable partnership. A president who won American voters with a calmly reassuring nod towards traditional governing and a democratic socialist senator that twice came within striking distance of winning the nomination for President with what was once considered a highly idealistic agenda. The Senate Budget Committee is now headed by Sanders.
Together, they are trying to unite the political factions of progressives and centrists in the sprawling Democratic Party, which controls Congress by only the narrowest of margins in the House and a 50-50 Senate, with no votes to spare around the president’s $3.5 trillion national rebuilding proposal.
In their sights is a legislative feat on par with Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal or Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society. For two political leaders in the twilight of decades-long careers, it is the chance of a lifetime and the stuff of legacies.
“We’re going to get this done,” Biden said Wednesday as he entered the private lunch room at the Capitol.
Biden encouraged senators to consider the good they can do for Americans, including investing in Scranton, Pennsylvania. He was born in this area and feels that the party isn’t in touch with the pain of working people.
The president gave a nod to Sanders, who noted their past rivalry and yet spoke with similar urgency about the moment before them — how the future of democracy rests with how well they can connect with people who feel the government has forgotten them.
When it came time for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to call on senators who had raised their hands to speak, there were no pointed questions or objections, only enthusiasm, according to a person in the room who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the private meeting.
Senators emerged enthralled by the possibility of doing something big for the country.
“Truly transformative,” Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Calif., said, using a word both Biden and Sanders now share.
The relationship between Biden and Sanders goes back years, the president having already spent decades in the Senate by the time the Vermont lawmaker was elected in 2006.
While Biden was the ultimate senator’s senator, Sanders has always been an outsider on Capitol Hill, a declared independent, rather than member of the Democratic Party, with his rumpled suits, gruff demeanor and unrelenting focus on liberal causes.
Ask Sanders any question, on almost any topic, and his answers are almost always the same — it’s time for the government to stop catering to the rich and powerful and instead focus on the working people of this country.
Once seen as outlandish, Sanders’ views have captivated millions of Americans who filled arenas to hear him speak, particularly after the Great Recession and amid a growing awareness of the nation’s gaping inequality. He almost won the party’s presidential nomination in 2016, but was defeated by Hillary Clinton, and again in 2020, before he lost to Biden.
In returning to the Senate, Sanders quickly became a focal point of Republicans opposed to Biden’s agenda. The president intends to finance his plan with tax hikes on corporations and Americans making more than $400,000 a year. Republicans see Sanders as an influencer, alongside Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and other prominent progressives, pushing the president to liberal extremes.
“The president may have won the nomination, but Bernie Sanders won the argument,” Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said recently back home in Kentucky, on the same day he said he was ”100% focused” on stopping Biden’s agenda.
But in developing the investment package with the president, Sanders showed another side of his skill set: that of a pragmatic legislator.
Word circulated Monday that the two were huddled in the Oval Office, a key moment as Democrats were struggling to build consensus. Biden’s jobs and families plans total more than $4 trillion in traditional public works and human infrastructure investments. Sanders had presented a bolder $6 trillion proposal.
Sanders had been imploring his colleagues not to focus on price tags but rather on priorities — helping the middle class, fighting climate change, aiding older adults. He had also been insisting that the wealthy and large corporations pay their fair share in taxes. It is the same argument inside the rooms as it is in the arenas, senators say.
“The meeting was substantive, warm, and friendly — which also describes the nature of their relationship going back years,” said White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates. The president values his skilled leadership, he said.
A bipartisan group of senators is compiling a slimmer $1 trillion package of roads and other public works spending.
But with Republicans opposed in lockstep to Biden’s broader proposal, Democrats are pressing ahead on the more robust package they could pass on their own, under special budget rules of 51 votes for passage rather than the 60 typically needed to overcome objections from a filibuster.
If Biden, Sanders and Schumer can keep all 50 Democratic senators united, Vice President Kamala Harris can cast a tiebreaking vote. Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi has a similarly slim margin in the House.
Democratic Sen. Jon Tester, a centrist Montana farmer, is not yet supporting the president’s broader plan, but said Sanders often advocates for things that are “common sense.”
While acknowledging that Sanders sometimes pushes the envelope further than he’s comfortable with, Tester said, “He’s trying to make it so the little guy’s got a shot, which is, you know, what Democrats are for — at least that’s what I’m for. I want to make sure the little guy has a shot.”
Hunter Biden Seen Partying On Tropical Beaches After Art Sale Payday
Selling elementary school-level paintings for six figures certainly does afford Hunter Biden the opportunity to live like a movie star. The 51-year-old son of the President was spotted last week surfing in Malibu with former professional surfer Strider Wasilewski.
The UK Daily Mail published the exclusive video footage of Hunter surfing. Watch it HERE.
Hunter is living in Malibu now. He’s renting a $20,000 a month oceanfront home where he lives with his South African wife Melissa Cohen and their son, one-year-old Beau.
Several months ago, Hunter dumped the $5.4 million Venice Beach mansion he had been renting in favor of the elite beaches of Malibu in order to give his family more privacy.
It’s good to be a Biden.
Last month, the White House attempted to downplay the ethics concerns over the President’s troubled son’s art “profession,” claiming that all buyers of his so-called “art” would remain anonymous to both Hunter and the White House.
Jen Psaki tries to spin Hunter Biden's face-to-face meetings with prospective buyers of his art:— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) July 22, 2021
"Hunter Biden, just like any child of a president, should be able to pursue their professions and their passions." pic.twitter.com/871FI8U9PW
But in reality, there is no way for the White House to enforce such a claim.
Reporters repeatedly pressed White House press secretary Jen Psaki about the feasibility of guaranteeing that Hunter would not know who was buying his paintings. And rather than address their concerns directly, Psaki simply repeated that the buyers would remain anonymous.
When asked about Hunter’s meeting with people at the gallery showing and what would prevent a potential buyer from telling Hunter that he was a buyer, Psaki deflected.
To believe that Hunter will follow these guidelines is deeply naïve. Hunter Biden isn’t exactly a trustworthy person. He has a history of drug abuse, and he has a long history of exploiting his father’s position for personal financial gain by selling access to his father.
The fact is, not one thing in the White House’s plan would stop a potential buyer from contacting Surf City Biden and telling him “Hey, I was the one who bought that piece of garbage for half a million dollars. Any chance I can get you to set up a meeting with your father?”
Last week during a podcast interview, Hunter was asked to respond to critics who say his art sales present a potential ethics problem.
His response? “F*ck them.”
What a prince.
More NY Prosecutors Seek Evidence Against Cuomo
Prosecutors from at least five New York counties are now seeking evidence from the report accusing Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment.
District attorneys from Manhattan, Westchester, Nassau and Albany counties want to see the evidence collected in the investigation for the report, according to CNBC. In addition, the Oswego County District Attorney also wants documents and information relating to one of the alleged incidents, WSYR-TV said.
The investigation into Cuomo found that he sexually harassed multiple current and former state government employees, state Attorney General Letitia James had announced Tuesday.
The investigation was conducted by two outside lawyers. The Associated Press said the probe also found that the Cuomo administration was a “hostile work environment” and that it was “rife with fear and intimidation.”
CNBC reported that a spokesperson for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. said: “When our office learned that the Attorney General’s investigation of the governor’s conduct was complete, our office contacted the Attorney General’s Office to begin requesting investigative materials in their possession pertaining to incidents that occurred in Manhattan.”
And Westchester County District Attorney Mimi Rocah said she intends to launch an inquiry into whether the alleged sexual misconduct by Cuomo that occurred in her jurisdiction was “criminal in nature.”
Nassau County District Attorney Joyce Smith said in a statement: “We are reviewing the deeply disturbing findings of the Attorney General’s report regarding the Governor’s alleged conduct. We have requested the Attorney General’s records related to any incidents that occurred in Nassau County and will thoroughly and expeditiously investigate any potential crimes.
Albany County District Attorney David Soares has already announced he is launching a criminal probe of Cuomo in light of the findings.
Oswego District Attorney Greg Oakes told WSYR he wants to review all pertinent materials relating to Virginia Limmiatis, who is listed as one of the 11 women with a complaint against Cuomo in the investigation by James’ office.
“I will be requesting all documents and information relating to the alleged incident from the NYS Attorney General’s Office to determine what, if any, action can be taken,” Oakes said. “I want to make sure that I have all relevant information prior to making any decision, which includes speaking with Ms. Limmiatis, if she is willing.”
Cuomo has denied the results of the investigation. He claimed the “facts in the cases are “much different than what has been portrayed.”
“I want you to know directly from me that I never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances,” he said. “I am 63 years old. I’ve lived my entire adult life in public view. That is just not who I am, and that’s not who I have ever been.”
Rnc Spokesperson Paris Dennard Talks About Gop Diversity And Support For The Black Community
Recently, former Toledo mayor Donna M. Owens got the chance to speak to Paris Dennard, a fellow GOP and the current Republican National Committee (RNC) National Spokesperson and Director of Black Media Affairs.
In an exclusive interview on Essence, a black women’s lifestyle website, Dennard talked about the changing landscape within the Grand Old Party. The popular belief that cultural and racial diversity is only a priority of the Democratic Party isn’t true at all. In fact, the Republicans have made strides in promoting inclusiveness to achieve ultimate balance and harmony in American politics.
“The Republican Party is even more diverse in 2021 thanks to the intentional efforts to expand the reach of our party in diverse communities. In the last election, Republicans flipped 15 Congressional seats from Democrat to Republican. In each of those seats that flipped to the GOP, the elected winner was either a woman or minority,” Dennard stated.
“We added two Black Republicans to Congress, Representatives Byron Donalds (R-FL) and Burgess Owens (R-UT). And we continue to have Black women vie for the GOP nomination for a host of races ahead of the 2022 midterm election. This year, Winsome Sears made history by becoming the first Black Republican woman nominee for Lt. Governor in Virginia. In 2019, Roxy Ndebumadu was elected to the City Council in Bowie, Maryland,” Dennard added.
Dennard, a proud black man himself, has served as the chairman of the Arizona Teenage Republicans during his highschool days. Since his youth, GOP blood has been running deeply into his veins. Regardless of his color and cultural identity, he feels at home with an organization that he shares his beliefs and ideologies with.
“Members of the Republican Party come from all walks of life. We are a pro-life party. The GOP supports issues that Black Americans care about like school choice in education, investing in HBCUs (with former President Donald Trump providing permanent HBCU funding for the first time);” Dennard said.
When asked by Owens about voting rights, which has been one of the pressing issues for Black Americans, Dennard cited the struggles of his predecessors, when they fought hard for the freedom to choose.
“My family comes from Cordele, Georgia so I understand the sacrifices made by my ancestors to help secure Black Americans and women the right to vote. Too many people that look like me literally fought, bled, sacrificed, and died for my right to vote as a Republican because we are free to have our own opinions, free to have our own thoughts and free to vote for any political party,” Dennard elaborated.
“We know there are millions of Black voters who are willing to give the Republican Party a first or second look and want to vote for us. When they do, it should be safe and secure and their actual vote,” Dennard added.
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- Hunter Biden Seen Partying On Tropical Beaches After Art Sale Payday
- More NY Prosecutors Seek Evidence Against Cuomo
- Rnc Spokesperson Paris Dennard Talks About Gop Diversity And Support For The Black Community
- Cuban Government Behind The Arrests And Disappearances Of Over 1,000 Dissidents
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