Quick Takes: ‘Do The Women Get to Talk Around Here?’

A roundup of news that caught my eye today.

* In laying out the events that led to all of the confusion about whether or not Trump had reached a deal with Schumer and Pelosi on DACA, Ashley Parker includes this little tidbit:

At one point, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross asked, “What exactly does the president get out of this deal?” As Pelosi, the only woman at the table of 11, tried to make her point — that the president gets the cooperation of the Democrats, which he will likely need on a host of issues — the men in the room began talking over her and one another.

“Do the women get to talk around here?” Pelosi interjected, according to two people familiar with the exchange.

There was, at last, silence, and she was not interrupted again.

Don’t mess with Nancy!

* Once again, the courts put the brakes on the Trump administration.

In a ruling with national impact, a federal judge in Chicago on Friday blocked the Trump administration’s rules requiring so-called sanctuary cities to cooperate with immigration agents in order to get a public safety grant.

U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber wrote in his 41-page ruling that Chicago has shown a “likelihood of success” in its arguments that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions exceeded his authority in imposing new standards governing Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants across the country.

He also said Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration has shown the city could suffer “irreparable harm” in its relationship with the immigrant community if it were to comply with the U.S. Department of Justice’s new standards.

“Once such trust is lost, it cannot be repaired through an award of money damages, making it the type of harm that is especially hard to rectify” if he were to wait until the lawsuit is settled, Leinenweber wrote.

The preliminary injunction granted by Leinenweber applies to districts nationwide.

* Every American should have mixed feelings about this:

The Department of Defense has circumvented a mandate by President Donald Trump to stop preparing for climate change and, under Defense Secretary Jim Mattis’ leadership, is moving forward with an Obama-era plan to address global warming as a serious threat to national security, Military Times reports.

In March, Trump — who has repeatedly stated that global warming is a hoax fabricated by the Chinese to make U.S. manufacturing less competitive — rescinded all climate-related federal agency actions initiated by his predecessor. This sweeping move included reversing a directive from President Barack Obama that obliged the Pentagon to embrace the view long held by the scientific community — that climate change is real — and plan accordingly.

That is great news for the planet. But it sets a really dangerous precedent of the military doing and end-around the president.

* There are so many ways that this administration’s white nationalist agenda is not only inhumane, but stupid. Here’s an example:

U.S. Army recruiters have abruptly canceled enlistment contracts for hundreds of foreign-born military recruits since last week, upending their lives and potentially exposing many to deportation, according to several affected recruits and a former Army officer familiar with their situation.

Many of these enlistees have waited years to join a troubled immigration recruitment program designed to attract highly skilled immigrants into the service in exchange for fast-track citizenship.

* This is a perfect example of the fact that a lot of Americans understand that racism is bad, they just don’t know what racism is.

A new Reuters/Ipsos poll done in collaboration with the University of Virginia Center for Politics has found that while respondents by and large reject white supremacists and neo-Nazis, many share the same racial beliefs to which these vilified groups subscribe.

* I suspect that this chart documenting one aspect of our country’s history will come as a surprise to a lot of people.


* By this time on Friday, I am almost always in need of some levity. Along those lines, something that has been puzzling people for a while now is why Steve Bannon wears so many shirts.

Intrepid reporter Olivia Nuzzi sets out to find the answer to that burning question.

He’s a layering extremist, if you will, adhering to a disheveled uniform of shirts from Brooks Brothers and Orvis, a brand that makes clothes for fly fishing and other outdoor sports (he does not fly fish). He keeps them both folded and hanging in his closet at the Breitbart headquarters, a townhouse in D.C. known as the “Breitbart Embassy,” as well as in other unspecified closets in unspecified locations…

Bannon’s spokesperson thought it was important to note that he’s also particular about what he adorns his shirts and blazers with: a series of pens, usually the Pilot Precise V5 Stick Rolling Ball Pen. Like with the shirts, the pens travel with Bannon through the world in multiples.

“What do shirts say about Steve Bannon?” his spokesperson asked, before answering the question: “He’s always got a contingency plan. If one shirt gets ruined, put the next one on. If one pen dies? Just use another pen.”

* Finally, I know I’ve already posted a couple of songs by Lizz Wright, but she has a voice that reaches into my soul. This song, both written and performed by Wright, is simply too relevant to miss. Here’s what she said about it on Facebook:

“Painted Sky” (Don’t Give Up On Us) is an invitation to be courageous, real and to end the suffering of denial. It’s time to come out from beneath our confining constructs of unnatural thinking about who we are and who belongs.

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly.