Here's the House roll call vote on the tax "reform" bill; you don't need the Senate roll call, because all Republicans (except Sen. McCain, who's incapacitated at present) voted yea, and all Democrats voted nay. Your House Republicans voting nay are all from New Jersey or New York except for two Californians (Messrs. Issa and Rohrabacher) and, of course, the incorrigible Walter Jones of North Carolina. All those who voted yea should be unelectable now, just as everyone who voted to repeal Obamacare earlier this year should be unelectable now, but there's still plenty of time between now and Election Day, and seriously, you think Democrats will run ads about these evil works? Why, that would be uncivil!
Steel-manufacturing corporation agrees to pay $1.5 million for polluting the air of good Pennsylvania residents -- and will face more penalties if it doesn't reduce emissions. Those who constantly complain about TEH REGULASHUNZ!!!!! should ask themselves whether they actually approve of folks not being able to go outside because the air's so bad. Because if you constantly whine about regulations, you're objectively pro-pollution, not to mention objectively pro-bigger health care bills. I really don't think it's more nuanced than that.
Trump judicial nominee Matthew Petersen withdraws from consideration after a video of him wilting under rudimentary legal questions from Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) goes viral. Mr. Petersen can't go away without playing the pity card, of course -- "I had hoped that my nearly two decades of public service might carry more weight than my two worst minutes on television," he says, omitting the fact that his "two worst minutes" thoroughly demonstrated why he shouldn't be a federal judge. President Trump no doubt eagerly awaits the day when net neutrality is no more, so future unqualified judicial nominees won't be so easily embarrassed.
Surprise, surprise, an FCC Inspector General finds that, contra right-wing propaganda, President Obama did not, in fact, interfere with the net neutrality rule-making process in 2014 and 2015. You recall that Mr. Obama did make a video saying what he thought the FCC should do in late 2014, but that hardly constitutes "express orders," particularly when Mr. Obama made a point of saying he couldn't tell the FCC Chair what to do. Maybe right-wingers will still think Mr. Obama interfered, but I doubt a judge will, since that's where this is all going. I'm starting to think Mr. Pai isn't the accomplished servant of corporate interests he aspires to be.
President Trump commutes sentence of Iowa kosher meatpacking executive Sholom Rubashkin, who was serving 27 years for money laundering and bank fraud. So now we know whom Mr. Trump thinks deserves mercy in America: other bosses, like him -- and this boss originally got busted for using hundreds of undocumented immigrants! And while Mr. Rubashkin is no Wall Street bankster, I wouldn't be so quick to say he deserves clemency merely because he was "a devoted husband and father" and "a deeply religious man," as if these are amulets to shield you from the consequences of your actions.
Finally, jury finds first six defendants not guilty of rioting and property destruction charges for their participation in J20 Inauguration Day protests. Well, only 166 defendants to go! Seriously, I'd like to celebrate this as a victory for free speech and protest, but it is a little demoralizing seeing how low prosecutors will sink to try to win -- and frightening to think how low they'll go once President Even-Worse-Than-Trump takes office.