MAGA Malarkey: The Extremism You Missed From Republicans This Week

MAGA Republicans stooped to new lows this week with their extremism, hypocrisy, chaos, and — as President Biden would call it — malarkey. In case you missed it: Trump once again called for cuts to Social Security and Medicare; Trump met with and once again praised another dictator; and the RNC hired an election denier and self-described “conspiracy theorist”… to lead their “election integrity” unit.

Meanwhile, MAGA Republican senators blocked IVF protections; anti-abortion extremists with ties to Trump are pushing to ban IVF access; Republicans have decided they want to talk more about their cruel anti-choice agenda; and Trump’s MAGA minion Elise Stefanik bragged about bringing federal infrastructure money home to her district despite the fact that she voted against the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

This week, Donald Trump doubled down on his plans to gut Social Security and Medicare, which voters overwhelmingly don’t want.

Joe Kernen, CNBC: “Have you changed your outlook on how to handle entitlements, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid?”

Trump: “So first of all, there is a lot you can do in terms of entitlements, in terms of cutting.”

Vox: “Trump just opened the door to Social Security cuts. Take him seriously.”

CNN: “Trump suggests he’s open to cuts to Medicare and Social Security after attacking primary rivals over the issue”

NBC News: “Trump floats ‘cutting’ retirement spending, drawing quick pushback from Biden”

Trump met with authoritarian leader Viktor Orbán and doubled down on his habit of praising dictators.

Trump: “Well, first of all he’s a fantastic guy.”

Trump: “There’s nobody that’s better, smarter or a better leader than Viktor Orbán. … He’s the boss and he’s a great leader, fantastic leader. In Europe and around the world, they respect him.”

CNN: “Trump former advisers sound the alarm that he praises despots in private and on the campaign trail”

“To Donald Trump, Hungarian strongman Viktor Orbán is ‘fantastic,’ Chinese leader Xi Jinping is ‘brilliant,’ North Korea’s Kim Jong Un is ‘an OK guy,’ and, most alarmingly, he allegedly said Adolf Hitler ‘did some good things,’ a worldview that would reverse decades-old US foreign policy in a second term should he win November’s presidential election, multiple former senior advisers told CNN.

“‘He thought Putin was an OK guy and Kim was an OK guy — that we had pushed North Korea into a corner,’ retired Gen. John Kelly, who served as Trump’s chief of staff, told me. ‘To him, it was like we were goading these guys. ‘If we didn’t have NATO, then Putin wouldn’t be doing these things.’”

The RNC’s Trump-led extreme MAGA shakeup is officially underway, and one of their first orders of business was to hire election denier Christina Bobb to lead their “election integrity” efforts.

HuffPost: “Election Deniers Have Taken Over The RNC After A Trump Shake-Up”

Washington Post: “LaCivita is installing Christina Bobb — a former OAN reporter who has espoused false claims that the 2020 election was stolen — as senior counsel for election integrity. Bobb is the author of a book called ‘Stealing Your Vote: The Inside Story of the 2020 Election and What It Means for 2024’ and promoted the audit of Arizona elections.”

Media Matters: “Within a two-week span, Christina Bobb, an attorney for former President Donald Trump, has gone on multiple online shows affiliated with the QAnon conspiracy theory movement to promote her new book about supposed election fraud. During her appearances, Bobb has discussed being part of Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign, pushed false claims of election fraud, and floated new conspiracy theories, while calling herself ‘a conspiracy theorist.’”

HuffPost: “Christina Bobb, who spouted election falsehoods as a host for ultra-conservative One America News Network, not only embraced Trump’s big lie that he was robbed of victory in the 2020 election but also wrote a book about it, ‘Stealing Your Vote: The Inside Story of the 2020 Election and What It Means for 2024.’” 

MAGA Senate Republicans blocked a bill that would help service members and veterans access IVF.

Alanna Vagianos, HuffPost: “Just now: Senate Republicans block a bill to protect IVF & other fertility services for veterans & service members.”

Sen. Patty Murray: “…It’s pretty clear Republicans do not support IVF despite their language — not even for wounded service members and for veterans.”

“I will not stop working on this — it’s the right thing to do.”

Sen. Patty Murray: “If Republicans really do now want to support IVF, if they really do want to help people trying to grow their family — why not start with our veterans and our service members? These are the men and women who fought to protect our families. Why don’t we make sure they have the support they need to grow theirs?”

Extreme MAGA anti-abortion groups with ties to Donald Trump are openly pushing Republicans to restrict IVF access – and their ultimate goal is banning IVF.

Politico: “‘License to kill’: Anti-abortion groups rage against the GOP”

“As many politicians raced in recent weeks to get to the right side of public opinion on IVF, some of the country’s biggest and most influential anti-abortion groups are pushing back.”

“In Alabama, the anti-abortion movement resoundingly condemned a bill shielding IVF providers from criminal and civil charges, and pressured GOP Gov. Kay Ivey to veto it.”

“In Congress, anti-abortion groups are vowing to penalize GOP members if they support pro-IVF bills they believe go too far.”

“This week, leaders of two of the country’s biggest groups — Susan B. Anthony List and March for Life — will attend House Republicans’ annual policy retreat. … They want lawmakers to seize the moment created by the Alabama decision to impose restrictions on the way IVF is commonly practiced in the U.S.”

“Some Republicans lawmakers are heeding the anti-abortion movement’s concerns. In Iowa, House GOP lawmakers voted last week to advance legislation that would give embryos and fetuses personhood rights, despite concerns from Democrats and others that the legislation would hamper IVF access. And GOP lawmakers in Tennessee recently rejected legislation proposed by their Democratic colleagues to protect IVF access, saying that such legislation was unnecessary.”

Republicans have a new losing strategy – talking MORE about their cruel and unpopular anti-abortion agenda that is ripping away women’s freedoms.

Wall Street Journal: “Republicans’ New Abortion Strategy: Talk About It More, Not Less”

“Republicans leading the party’s effort to defend the House in this fall’s elections are pushing GOP colleagues to openly discuss their positions on abortion, rather than try to sidestep the issue like many did in the previous campaign, arguing that doing so will be critical to winning competitive races.”

“Abortion has weighed on the party’s success in recent years. Republicans won back the House in 2022 but by a narrower-than-expected margin, a far cry from the ‘red wave’ they had hoped would sweep them to a big majority in the chamber. Lawmakers from both parties say the Supreme Court’s decision that year ending the right to an abortion revved up abortion-rights voters and helped Democrats defend seats.”  

“More than a dozen GOP-controlled states have enacted a near ban on abortion, many of those with few exceptions for rape or incest. Others, like Florida, have banned abortion after six weeks of pregnancy.”

“While some congressional Republicans do support near-complete bans on abortions or restrictions that kick in at six weeks, others have backed bans after 15 weeks of pregnancy.”

“Issues around reproductive rights are already causing headaches for Republicans in this election cycle.”

Trump’s MAGA minion Elise Stefanik got caught in a bold-faced lie after taking credit for water infrastructure funding, provided in part by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that she voted against.

MSNBC: “Stefanik is the latest Republican to tout funding she voted against”

“GOP lawmakers have a habit of voting against Democratic legislation, only to turn around and take credit when the Democratic legislation makes investments in their states and districts.

“Take this week, for example. House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik issued this press release touting news in her upstate New York district.”

“A day later, there was some discussion about the funding for the local project coming by way of the Inflation Reduction Act, which Stefanik opposed and condemned.

“But that apparently wasn’t quite right: The funding came from a different Democratic bill — which Stefanik also opposed and condemned.”

Brian Tyler Cohen, MSNBC: “You voted against it, @RepStefanik. Perhaps you should mention that part.”