Here are the point-winners for the resistance this week:
Testy town halls
People are pissed off about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act – and they aretaking to town halls to show it. This resulted in a week’s worth of really bad optics, like when a pig farmer from the “real” America accused Senator Chuck Grassley of creating “one big death panel”; or when Senator Tom Cotton failed to reassure a seriously ill woman that he wouldn’t let her die. My favorite might have been Cotton getting owned by a seven-year-old (you should also do yourself a favor and watch that clip). Trump said they were fake protesters – so you know it’s getting under his skin.
The male Ann Coulter’s streak of good luck finally came to an end when his “friends” from the “alt-right” turned on him for, of all things, flippant comments made about his own childhood sexual abuse. I’m sorry – childhood sexual mentorship.
While Yiannopoulos fingered PC culture for collapsing the nuance of, and demonizing him for talking about, said scenario (and he indeed lost his deal with mainstream book publisher Simon and Schuster), it was the right that truly did him in.
He was uninvited from CPAC and forced to resign from his beloved Breitbart News after numerous editors threatened to quit over it. Because hating Muslims is totally fine, but putting the Milo spin on child abuse is a bridge too far.
1 point (this was an own goal, as in when a team scores on itself)
Don’t mess with Texas – or do, if you’re Planned Parenthood
Texas wanted to cut off Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood for non-abortion services. Anti-choice lawmakers initially hoped to use since discredited 2015 videos that allegedly caught Planned Parenthood employees engaging in some sort of illicit fetal tissue trade. The judge who ordered the preliminary halt on their plans was not convinced. In his decision, he wrote:
A secretly recorded video, fake names, a grand jury indictment, congressional investigations – these are the building blocks of a best-selling novel rather than a case concerning the interplay of federal and state authority through the Medicaid program. Yet rather than a villain plotting to take over the world, the subject of this case is the State of Texas’ efforts to expel a group of health care providers from a social health care program for families and individuals with limited resources.
Them’s fightin’ words!
The injunction will last until the case has had a full trial in court. For now, the 30 remaining health centers in the Lone Star State will continue providing crucial women’s health services to 12,500 Medicaid patients.
And how is Team Trump doing? Here are his points:
Trump turns his back on transgender teens
Trump did a complete 180 on transgender rights. On the campaign trail, he said there have been “very few problems” when people “use the bathroom that they feel is appropriate”. It was a rare endorsement of the status quo: he thought laws granting more rights should stay the way they are.
Not anymore. The Trump administration rescinded federal guidelines set by the Obama administration that required public schools to protect transgender students’ rights – including that most basic one, using the bathroom.
This could let theocracy-loving schools turn their backs on protecting transgender children. So much for Betsy DeVos, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump being effective voices of reason on LGBT rights.
Dakota access pipeline protests go up in flames
On Wednesday, the last remaining protesters at Cannonball were cleared out of the camp that had been their home for the past six months. The US army corps of engineers ordered their removal, citing the dangers of potential flooding (also: the dangers of not getting the oil where they want it to go in a timely fashion).
About 10 holdouts were arrested for refusing to leave on Wednesday, followed by another 23 on Thursday. Not ones to go quietly, some residents set their tents ablaze as part of a Native American cleansing ceremony. The water protectors might have lost this one to white supremacist capitalist colonialism (what’s new?), but their fiery spirit of resistance lives on.
The Resistance: 3, Team Trump: 2