Tea Party Patriots Weekly Report from Washington for 8/28/17



The House and Senate have both left for their August recess, and will not return until Tuesday, September 5.


Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has advised Congress that he will reach the limit of his ability to use what he calls “extraordinary measures” – what regular people call “smoke and mirrors” – to keep paying the nation’s bills on September 29. After that, if Congress has not passed legislation to either raise or suspend the debt limit, we will start missing payments.

Congress still has not yet worked out a deal. Stay tuned. 


There’s a deadline looming on the immigration front. One week from tomorrow, if the President has not announced he is rescinding his predecessor’s so-called “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” amnesty for certain illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children, then Texas and nine other states are going to sue the federal government. And they’ll likely win.

As the deadline approaches, the Trump Administration is strongly considering announcing that it is overturning the policy. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is known to be a strong opponent of the program, and is reported to be pressuring to overturn the policy.


We learned a week and a half ago that the IRS had rehired 213 former employees who had been terminated for failure to file or pay their own taxes, and for other violations of the law.

And on Thursday, August 17, Federal District Judge Reggie Walton ordered the IRS to name the specific employees the agency blames for the tea party targeting scandal, and said the federal government must show him proof that it has stopped the illegal targeting. He also ordered the IRS to explain the delays for 38 groups that are part of a lawsuit where they are suing to get a full accounting of their treatment.

One question that’s left outstanding was noted by the Daily Signal – why are President Trump’s Justice Department appointees protecting the IRS? And why haven’t Trump’s political appointees at DOJ reversed the refusal of the former U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia to enforce the contempt citation against former IRS official Lois Lerner issued by the House of Representatives for her refusal to cooperate with the congressional investigation of this scandal? That citation should be presented to a federal grand jury for action.


A week ago, President Trump addressed the nation on prime-time television, and laid out his Administration’s new strategy for Afghanistan. Rather than withdraw from Afghanistan entirely, and allow Afghanistan once again to become a haven for radical Islamic terrorists to plot against us, he decided to increase U.S. troop levels. Though he did not say in the speech itself just how much larger he would make the U.S. presence there, Administration leaks put the size of the increase at about 4,000 more troops. That would bring the total U.S. military deployment to about 16,000.

In deciding to up the troop presence, he chose against two other options – total withdrawal, or replacing U.S. troops with mercenaries, an option he considered but rejected.

To some critics, this looks an awful lot like a policy that could have come out of a Hillary Clinton White House. But it certainly couldn’t have come out of a Barack Obama White House – in fact, there’s a specific rejection of the Obama strategy. The President said we would not set a time limit on the deployment, but would instead make decisions on implementation of the strategy based on conditions on the ground. That difference alone is essential to the strategy.


Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe entered a new phase, as he subpoenaed several prominent Washington lobbying firms that did work for two former Trump advisers, Michael Flynn and Paul Manafort. The subpoenas indicate that Mueller’s team is looking closely at the two of them, both of whom face possible legal jeopardy for failing to register as agents of a foreign power for work they did that was unrelated to the Trump campaign.

But remember, the way these investigations typically work, the feds will gather evidence showing proof of crimes by lower-ranking targets, then use that evidence to threaten prosecution and force cooperation from the lower-ranking witnesses against higher-ranking targets. So the fact that the evidence they seem to be gathering now may have nothing to do with the Trump campaign doesn’t mean the Trump campaign is off the hook, it simply means the feds are going after this in a typically methodical manner.


There’s trouble looming on the horizon. We know September is going to be a brutal month, but based on what we heard last week, it has the potential of being even more brutal than what we thought.

Remember, there are several fiscal deadlines coming in September. Congress will have to pass a bill raising the debt ceiling by September 29; Congress will have to pass a bill funding the government for all or part of fiscal year 2018 by September 30; and, sometime before September 30, Congress will also have to pass bills reauthorizing the Federal Aviation Administration, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and the National Flood Insurance Program.

And here’s what we picked up last week: GOP congressional leadership is working to put together a deal that includes the following elements: 1) a $2 trillion increase in the debt limit, that would likely last past the 2018 midterm elections; 2) full funding of ObamaCare’s Cost-Sharing Reduction payments for one year – those are the payments that President Trump has referred to as insurance company “BAILOUTS” – likely costed out at $7 billion; 3) a Continuing Resolution that funds everything as we fund it now, with no funding for the border wall.

There’s nothing in there at all for conservatives. That package, if it comes to pass, will rely on Democrat votes to pass. We are going to do everything we can to oppose this.


On Friday, August 18, the White House announced that Senior Counselor and Chief Strategist Steve Bannon would be leaving the White House staff.

Bannon had tendered his resignation on August 7, with plans to have it announced the following week, which would have marked the one-year anniversary of his joining the Trump Campaign. But as events unfolded in Charlottesville that following weekend, the decision was made to hold the announcement for a few days.

Bannon returns to Breitbart, where he has made clear he will focus the news organization’s fire on Trump opponents inside the administration and out.

One week after Bannon’s departure, National Security Staffer Sebastian Gorka also left the White House staff. He insists he resigned, and circulated a scathing resignation letter; the White House responded by putting out a statement denying that he had resigned, but confirming that he no longer worked at the White House, leaving it to the reader to conclude he had been fired.



Hill: Jenny Beth Martin: To Save the Senate, GOP Should Shut Down Democrats

WT: Jenny Beth Martin: ObamaCare Repeal and the Discharge Petition

Hill: Jenny Beth Martin: On Immigration, Mr. President, Pick a Fight — And Win It

WT: Jenny Beth Martin: Trump, McConnell, ObamaCare and the Tea Party

WT: Conservatives Tell Trump That Bannon, Conway Vital to His Agenda

Breitbart: Mo Brooks Credits Tea Party Patriots for Keeping Him Competitive in AL Senate Race

DS: Alabama Special Election GOP Primary Goes to September Runoff

TRU: Tea Party Leader Says IRS Commish Needs To Go

Hill: Groups Launch Campaign To Quickly Confirm Trump Judicial Nominees

WE: Conservative Groups Launch New $500,000 Ad Campaign To Boost Trump Judicial Nominees

NRO: Conservative Groups Showcase Ads Demanding Judicial Confirmations

DS: Conservatives Push for Democrats To Stop Obstructing Trump Judicial Nominees

IM: The Different Faces of Lindsey Graham

Hill: Trump Allies Say He Needs a GOP Scalp


RC: Congress Set for Horse-Trading Over Must-Pass Bills in September


Politico: GOP Divides over Trump’s Ex-Im Bank Nomination

Hill: Gorka Leaves White House Post

WE: Sebastian Gorka Quits White House, Slams Trump’s Advisers in Resignation Letter


VF: The Political Crisis Looming over Trump’s Presidency

Hill: Looming Debt Limit Fight Rattles Wall Street

Politico: FreedomWorks Memo Warns Against ‘Clean’ Debt Ceiling Increase


Hill: Immigration Battlefield Widens for Trump, GOP

McClatchy: Trump Aides Plot a Big Immigration Deal — That Breaks a Campaign Promise

HuffPo: Democrats Nix Idea of Trading Dreamers’ Protections for Border Wall, More Deportations

WE: Trump To Renew Border Wall Push During Yuma, Arizona Visit

Politico: Trump Under the Gun as Dreamers Deadline Looms

Axios: Trump Seriously Considering Ending DACA

WaPo: DHS Reviewing status of Obama’s Deferred- Action Program or Illegal Immigrants


Reuters: Iran Could Quit Nuclear Deal in ‘Hours’ if New U.S. Sanctions Imposed: Rouhani


DS: IRS Rehired 213 Employees Ousted for Falsifying Documents, Avoiding Taxes, Other Offenses

WT: ‘Lay It on the Line’: Judge in Tea Party Case Orders IRS To Disclose Employee Names, Reasons

WSJ: (Still) Seeking IRS Accountability

DS: Why Are Trump’s Justice Department Appointees Protecting the IRS?

Politico: GOP Leaders Hope for Green Light To Release More Tax Plan Details Next Month


Politico: Full Text: Trump’s Speech on Afghanistan

Politico: How Trump Swallowed a Bitter Afghanistan Pill

NYT: Angry Trump Grilled His Generals About Troop Increase, Then Gave In=

Politico: Bannon’s Breitbart Tears into Trump after Afghanistan Speech

DS: Trump Lays Out a Winning Strategy for Afghanistan

DS: 6 Takeaways as Trump Recommits US To ‘Defeat the Enemy in Afghanistan


WT: Beware the ObamaCare Industrial Complex

Axios: CBO Warns of Market Chaos if ACA Insurer Payments End

Hill: White House To Pressure McConnell on ObamaCare

LAT: Trump Administration Agrees To Continue Healthcare Subsidy for Now


DC: Trump Campaign Officials Rebuffed Volunteer’s Attempts To Broker Meeting with Russian Government

BI: New Trump-Russia Emails Could Establish a ‘Devastating’ Legal Entanglement for Paul Manafort

WT: DNC Hack theories Considered Extreme and Fringe Now Entering Mainstream

WaPo: Washington Lobbying Firms Receive Subpoenas as Part of Russia Probe


Politico: Fears Grow that Trump Could Ignore Congress on Spending

WE: Trump Threatens Government Shutdown over Border Wall Funding

WaPo: Trump Threatens Shutdown, Suggests Controversial Pardon at Arizona Rally

Politico: Shutdown Threat Grows as Trump Digs In on Wall

WaPo: Conflict Between Trump and Congress Escalates as Difficult Agenda Looms

CNBC: Forget the Wall. Here’s Why Trump Should Shut Down the Government

CR: Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan Surrender Unconditionally

Politico: Flood Insurance Splits GOP, Spurs Bipartisan Dealmaking as Deadline Looms


Prospect: Steve Bannon, Unrepentant

Axios: What Steve Bannon Thinks About Charlottesville

NYT: Stephen Bannon Out at the White House After Turbulent Run

TWS: Bannon: ‘The Trump Presidency That We Fought For, and Won, Is Over.’

NYT: Steve Bannon, Back on the Outside, Prepares His Enemies List=

Politico: Inside the Rise and Fall of Steve Bannon

Axios: Bannon’s Billionaire Meeting To Plot a Path Forward

Politico: Hawks Soaring after Bannon’s Departure

Politico: West wing Lurches into Unknown after Bannon’s Exit

NYT: Will Bannon’s White House Agenda Survive Without Him?

WaPo: Bannon’s Departure Is Unlikely To Calm the Turmoil in Trump’s White House

DS: ‘Hillary-Lite Administration’? Conservatives Worry About Bannon Ouster

NYT: Bannon Was Set for a Graceful Exit. Then Came Charlottesville.

VF: Steve Bannon Readies His Revenge

Politico: Freedom Caucus Loses Key White House Ally with Bannon Exit

NYT: Behind the Bluster of Steve Bannon’s #War Cry

Reuters: After Firing, Bannon Returns to His ‘Killing Machine’


Politico: Trump’s Team and Lawmakers Making Strides on Tax Reform Plan

Politico: White House Yielding to Congress on Tax Reform


DC: Obama Holdovers Still in Dozens of Key National Security Council Jobs

Politico: Transcript: Trump’s Comments on White Supremacists, ‘Alt-Left’ in Charlottesville

LAT: Who Was Responsible for the Violence in Charlottesville? Here’s What Witnesses Say

Hill: The Media Couldn’t Be More Blatant in Distorting Trump’s Words on Charlottesville

Politico: ‘He Is Stubborn and Doesn’t Realize How Bad This Is Getting’

NYT: Trump Comments on Race Open Breach with CEOs, Military and GOP=

USAT: Mitch McConnell’s Secret Fury over Charlottesville Response Highlights GOP’s Trump Dilemma

Bloomberg: The 48 Frantic Hours Before CEOs Broke with Trump

Politico: Poll: GOP Voters Side with Trump Over McConnell

WaPo: trump’s Lack of Discipline Leaves New Chief of Staff Frustrated and Dismayed

Politico: Trump Ally Blasts Congressional Leaders

NYT: McConnell, in Private, Doubts if Trump Can Save Presidency

CNN: Trump, McConnell Haven’t Spoken Since Angry Phone Call, Sources Say

WaPo: Trump Distances Himself from GOP Lawmakers To Avoid Blame if Agenda Stalls


Hill: McConnell’s Approval in Kentucky at 18 Percent

Axios: Republicans Lost Faith in Congress Faster Than in Trump

WSJ: SPLC: J.P. Morgan’s Hate List