Weekly Review — May 11, 2017, 2:22 pm

Weekly Review

The House passes Trumpcare, Trump fires the director of the FBI, and Sean Spicer hides in the bushes

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who said in 2009 that he didn’t “think we should pass bills” when “we don’t know what they cost,” brought to a vote the American Health Care Act, the cost of which has yet to be determined by the Congressional Budget Office.[1][2] Ryan said that passing the bill was Republicans “keeping our promises,” and then deleted from his website a statement that Americans should never be “charged more for a preexisting condition.”[3][4] South Carolina representative Mark Sanford said he did not read the bill, but voted for it; Virginia representative Tom Garrett said he did not read “the whole bill,” but voted for it; New York representative Chris Collins said that he “wouldn’t be telling the truth” if he said he “read every word” of the bill, but voted for it; Florida representative Mario Diaz-Balart said he did not like the “highly imperfect” bill, but voted for it so he could “stay involved”; and 15 Republican representatives who initially did not support the A.H.C.A. reportedly received a total of $37,500 in new campaign contributions from the medical industry and then voted for the bill, which passed with a margin of four votes.[5][6][7][8] President Donald Trump, who said in 1999 that he “believed in universal health care” and said in 2000 that he wanted a “comprehensive health-care program” funded by “an increase in corporate taxes,” called the A.H.C.A., which would cause an estimated 24 million Americans to lose their insurance and would provide hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts to households making more than $250,000 annually, “a great plan,” and then told Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull that Australia, which has universal coverage, had “better health care” than the United States. “I’m president,” said Trump. “Can you believe it?”[9][10][11][12][13] Idaho representative Raúl Labrador told a town-hall audience that “nobody dies because they don’t have access to health care,” Alabama representative Mo Brooks said the bill would save money for those who “keep their bodies healthy,” and it was reported that Trump has a call button in the Oval Office that he uses to order Coca-Cola.[14][15][16] Trump visited Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey, where he has filed plans to build a mausoleum for himself, and it was reported that he has spent 36 days as president visiting his own properties, including his private club in Palm Beach, Florida, where the Secret Service has paid his club at least $35,000 for golf-cart rentals, and his golf club in Sterling, Virginia, which bears a plaque marking the site of a Civil War battle called the “River of Blood,” which never occurred.[17][18][19][20][21] It was reported that Trump’s son Eric once told a journalist while golfing that the Trump Organization doesn’t “rely on American banks” because it has “all the funding we need out of Russia”; the Senate requested all records of Russian communication from Carter Page, a former Trump campaign adviser who was once referred to as an “idiot” by Russian operatives attempting to recruit him as a spy; and Page responded to the request with a 4,000-word letter in which he quoted Maya Angelou, alluded to a scene from the movie The Big Short, and called former acting attorney general Sally Yates a “de facto anarchist.”[22][23][24][25][26] Trump tweeted that “the Russia-Trump collusion story is a total hoax”; FBI director James Comey asked the Department of Justice for a budget increase to expand the bureau’s investigation of the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia; Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who had said he would recuse himself from the investigation after it was reported that he had made false claims to Congress about meeting with Russian officials during the campaign, wrote a letter to Trump recommending Comey be fired; and Trump, who reportedly screams at his television during news segments about the Russia probe, fired Comey.[27][28][29][30][31][32] “We have nothing to do with that,” Russian president Vladimir Putin said, without being asked.[33] Press Secretary Sean Spicer hid among the bushes outside the White House.[34]

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