The Donald waves his “You’re Fired” Trump card at GOP recalcitrants over the healthcare bill

Initially, President Trump articulated his support for the GOP’s American Health Care Act, thinking, maybe, that it would be enough to get Republican Congressional members solidly in support of the bill.

It didn’t work. Instead, a discordant squabble broke out.

The Donald, however, had a Trump card to play. He played it. And it’s bound to work a treat.

But we’re getting ahead of the story, so first things first:

Monday’s release of the legislation follows weeks of negotiations among Republican lawmakers and senior Trump administration officials. President Trump gave the bill a boost on Twitter, but the White House notably declined to explicitly endorse it. “Today marks an important step toward restoring health-care choices and affordability back to the American people,” Press Secretary Sean Spicer said. “President Trump looks forward to working with both chambers of Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare.” The president leaned in a bit more enthusiastically on Tuesday morning: “Our wonderful new healthcare bill is now out for review and negotiation,” he tweeted.

Yet what at least one conservative, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, seized on was not Trump’s praise of the proposal but his suggestion that it was up for negotiation. “It won’t work,” Paul said Tuesday morning on Fox and Friends, continuing a crusade against the bill before it came out. Calling the legislation “Obamacare Lite,” the former presidential contender said its replacement of the individual mandate with a premium payment to insurers a “bailout for the insurance companies” that was unconstitutional. “I think it’ll be a real mistake to go for this,” Paul said. “It won’t pass, and conservatives won’t take it.”

President Trump responded by reminding them of the cardinal rule of political life guaranteed to get their immediate undivided attention: Don’t piss off the voters whose support you need for reelection.

Which is what he, Trump, will make sure happens in the case of any Republican Congressional member who votes against the bill:

President Trump has told Republican leaders that he’s prepared to play hardball with congressional conservatives to pass the GOP healthcare bill, including by supporting the 2018 primary challengers of any Republican who votes against the bill.

Sources told the Washington Examiner that Trump made that threat in a White House meeting on Tuesday with House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and other members of the House GOP whip team that helps line up votes.

Trump’s threat is one that could resonate. Most of the Republicans who oppose the GOP’s American Health Care Act represent ruby red districts that strongly support Trump and his agenda.

Therefore, they could be the most susceptible to a midterm primary challenge, especially if Trump tells those voters that their member of Congress is blocking him from fulfilling his promise to repeal President Obama’s healthcare law.

That’s The Donald’s “You’re Fired” Trump card.

Sessions asks remaining 46 U.S. attorneys hired by Obama to resign

“U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has asked the remaining 46 chief federal prosecutors appointed by President Barack Obama who have not already resigned to do so ‘in order to ensure a uniform transition,’ the Justice Department said on Friday.”

Judge Napolitano says if Obama wiretapped Trump, it would ‘destroy whatever legacy’ he has

Speaking on ‘Fox & Friends,’ Judge Andrew Napolitano “said Obama had the power to legally order a wiretap, saying it’s directly in the FISA statute that ‘the president of the United States on his own may conduct surveillance or order surveillance of any person in the United States upon the filing of a certification with the attorney general.'”

The judge also said “that he thinks Obama allegedly listening in on Donald Trump’s phone calls and in-person conversations is ‘immoral, profoundly unconstitutional and utterly wrong.'”

The judge said wiretapping should serve the purpose of securing America as a sovereign entity, not used to torment political opponents.

“I think the political earthquake would destroy whatever legacy Barack Obama had,” said Napolitano, adding he thinks the Obama administration did in fact wiretap Trump Tower.

Under Trump, America’s labor market has gotten better while the country’s debt burden has decreased

According to the Labor Department’s monthly report out today, wage growth “picked up and the share of prime-age Americans in the labor force rose to the highest since 2011, suggesting the economy’s strength is drawing people off the sidelines.”

At the same time, according to a report in the Gateway Pundit, the U.S. debt burden has decreased by $68 billion since President Trump’s inauguration.

By comparison, under President Obama, the US Debt burden increased by more than $320 billion after his inauguration through March 8th 2009. Obama increased the US Debt by 3.1% during this time period and signed the trillion dollar ‘Stimulus’ bill which is widely considered a colossal failure and waste of US tax dollars as well. The failed ‘Stimulus’ did not kick in till later in Obama’s first year leading to Obama’s first year deficit of $1.4 trillion. Overall Obama doubled the US Debt during his Presidency and set records for highest deficits and the largest debt increase by any President ever.

President Trump’s first full month in office brings massive employment boom

ADP, a global human resources and payroll firm, has reported that “U.S. companies added a whopping 298,000 new jobs in February, beating economists’ expectations by more than 100,000.”

‘February proved to be an incredibly strong month for employment with increases we have not seen in years,’ Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president of the ADP Research Institute, said in a statement.

January’s new-jobs numbers were also revised upward on Wednesday from 246,000 to 261,000.

‘Confidence is playing a large role,’ Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, told CNBC.

‘Businesses are anticipating a lot of good stuff – tax cuts, less regulation. They are hiring more aggressively.’

Illegal border crossings drop 40 percent in Trump’s first month as president

The Department of Homeland Security announced yesterday that the “number of illegal immigrants crossing into the United States from Mexico declined by 40 percent from January to February.”

DHS Secretary John Kelly said that typically there’s a “10 percent to 20 percent increase in apprehensions of illegal immigrants from January to February.”

‘Since the administration’s implementation of Executive Orders to enforce immigration laws, apprehensions and inadmissible activity is trending toward the lowest monthly total in at least the last five years,’ Kelly said.

‘The drop in apprehensions shows a marked change in trends,’ said Kelly. Trump took office January 20.

He stressed that the sharp decline means fewer people are taking the huge risk of putting their fate in the hands of human traffickers.

‘Early results show that enforcement matters, deterrence matters, and that comprehensive immigration enforcement can make an impact,’ said Kelly, one of Trumps’ closest allies on tightening border security and on the president’s controversial pledge to build a wall there.

The San Antonio Express-News backed up the DHS statement, reporting yesterday that the “decline in illegal border-jumping can be seen in the number of empty beds at Texas immigration detention centers.”

In fact, “U.S. immigration officials have shut down emergency processing centers in South Texas and near El Paso, that they opened in December to handle an influx of families.”

This is in sharp contrast to December last year when “so many families were crossing the border illegally that ICE was forced to release hundreds to create bed space for new detainees.”

Japanese lawmakers seek first-strike option against North Korea

Alarmed “by North Korean military advances, influential Japanese lawmakers are pushing harder for Japan to develop the ability to strike preemptively at the missile facilities of its nuclear-armed neighbor.”

While Japan has for decades “been stretching the limits of its post-war, pacifist constitution,” successive “governments have said Tokyo has the right to attack enemy bases overseas when the enemy’s intention to attack Japan is evident, the threat is imminent and there are no other defense options.”

And the “growing threat posed by Pyongyang, including Monday’s simultaneous launch of four rockets, is adding weight to” that assertion.

A visit to the doctor, gets engaged couple arrested for fornication

A South African man’s new fiancee went to the doctor with a stomach cramp. The doctor found out that the woman was pregnant and “immediately called the police and had the couple arrested” for fornication.

Having sexual intercourse outside of marriage is illegal in the UAE — and those who are arrested for doing so tend to face long jail sentences.

While Culverwell and Nohai have reportedly been held in Al Wathba Prison in Abu Dhabi since Jan. 29, after being transferred there from a local police station, news of their detainment was first made public on Tuesday.

They have yet to been charged, though, because authorities are still trying to determine the paternity of the child and how long the couple had been sleeping together.

The couple, reportedly, “have been together since 2014.”

A scandal of epic proportions is developing over WikiLeaks’ claims of CIA hacking

Hard on the heels of the scandal over President Trump’s allegation that the Obama administration wiretapped Trump Towers, comes WikiLeaks’ publication of “thousands of documents from the Central Intelligence Agency that expose how US spies can remotely hack and control smartphones, computers, TVs and even vehicles.”

This could be worse than anyone thought.

“One security expert said the leak was so catastrophic that ‘there are people changing careers — and ending careers — as we speak'”.

Among the most alarming details in the explosive info dump is that the CIA developed a technology called “Weeping Angel” that can “infest” Samsung smart TVs to transform them into covert microphones.

“After infestation, Weeping Angel places the target TV in ‘fake-off’ mode, so that the owner believes the TV is off when it is on,” Wikileaks writes on its website.

The TV then operates as a bug, allowing spies to record conversations and send them over the internet to a covert CIA server.

Wikileaks also alleges that efforts to infect the vehicle control systems used by modern cars and trucks would allow the CIA to “engage in nearly undetectable assassinations”.

The eye-opening expose of the agency’s cyber espionage efforts — which includes more than 8700 documents — has been named “Vault 7”.

While the authenticity of the documents is yet to be confirmed, WikiLeaks has a long track record of releasing top secret government documents.

Security expert Jake Williams told the Associated Press that it appeared legitimate.

“There’s no question that there’s a fire drill going on right now,” the Rendition InfoSec founder said. “It wouldn’t surprise me that there are people changing careers — and ending careers — as we speak.”

And WikiLeaks has promised to release more CIA documents.

Conservatives vehemently oppose new bill to replace ObamaCare

“House Speaker Paul Ryan’s new bill to replace ObamaCare” is being slammed by “a wide range of conservatives, with one Republican senator declaring it ‘dead on arrival’ in the Senate — if it can make it through the House.”

And that’s despite President Trump voicing approval for the bill, telling “a group of House Republican leaders that he is ‘proud’ to support the new plan. ‘You can choose your doctor. You can choose your plan,’ he said at the meeting. ‘It’s called good health care.'”

But House Republicans will have none of it. “Senator Rand Paul derided it as ‘Obamacare-lite,’ while a group of House Republicans said it would create a ‘Republican welfare entitlement.’ One conservative group labeled it ‘Ryancare’ and said it was merely a ‘warmed-over substitute for government-run health care.'”

The pressure is now clearly on Republicans to deliver their long-promised repeal, and the party seems deeply divided over this new draft measure. The bill was blasted by a number of influential conservatives groups, including Heritage Action, the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks, and the libertarian Cato Institute.

“Everyone needs to take a step back,” wrote Michael Cannon, Cato’s director of health policy studies and a strong critic of Obamacare. “This bill is a train wreck waiting to happen.”

Rand Paul told Bloomberg TV that they “just want a clean repeal” and vote on a replacement later.”