Good morning, and welcome to election day if you’re in Michigan, Washington, Missouri, or Kansas. Those states hold primaries, while there’s a big special election in Ohio that will — again — illustrate how much momentum Democrats have going into November. Ohio’s 12th Congressional District is a Republican stronghold, but the Democrat — Danny O’Connor — is running to the center and making overtures to GOP Governor John Kasich, while the Republican Troy Balderson is leaning into Trumpism (Trump held a rally out there for him a few days ago). It’s tempting to say that the Democrats have already won here by making it a close race in a district with a 14 point lean toward Republicans, but winning is a lot more fun. That said, O’Connor has held a lead in only one poll, so far (a 1 point lead, at that), so let’s not get our hopes up. But if you live in that district in Ohio, first off: Congrats! You’re probably wealthy (it’s the wealthiest district in the state). Second: Please go vote for O’Connor.
— Meanwhile, after — I would guess, successfully — deterring asylum seekers from America by separating children from their parents, Trump (and Stephen Miller) now plan to turn toward legal immigrants, finalizing legislation that would make it far more difficult for immigrants (again, of the legal variety) to gain citizenship or green cards if they have ever used welfare programs, and that includes Obamacare, in addition to CHIP, food stamps, and potentially even free or reduced school lunches. In other words, as Draconian a policy as you might imagine from our racist in chief and his alt-right surfer troll minion.
— The EPA is now allowing asbestos — banned in most of the world — back into the manufacturing process for building materials, and I wonder why?
From The Guardian:
Uralasbest [a Russian mining company], one of the world’s largest producers and sellers of asbestos, has taken to adorning pallets of its product with a seal of Trump’s face, along with the words “Approved by Donald Trump, 45th president of the United States.” … Uralasbest, which is located in the mining city of Asbest in the Ural Mountains, is reported to have close ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin
Asbestos, for the youngsters in the house, causes high rates of lung cancer.
Asbestos was one of the first carcinogens regulated under the Clean Air Act in 1973 (Nixon was president) and then was largely banned in 1989 (George HW Bush was president). No amount of asbestos is safe. Yet, the Trump administration is #MAGA or making asbestos great again: https://t.co/J2JF5zjb1n— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) August 7, 2018
While asbestos may now get the literal Trump seal of approval, West Hollywood has passed a resolution to remove Trump’s Hollywood Walk of Fame star, which is pretty remarkable. Who should they replace it with? Mark Hamill has a pretty good suggestion:
Corruption runs deep in the Trump Administration, as it appears that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has been accused of siphoning off $120 million from business associates, or “a few million here, and a few million there.” From The Daily Beast:
Ross’ former colleagues offer very unkind words about him. “He’ll push the edge of truthfulness and use whatever power he has to grab assets,” said New York financier Asher Edelman, while another of Ross’ former colleagues said: “He’s a pathological liar.” They say he is obsessed with money, with two former colleagues recounting that he took handfuls of Sweet’ N Low packets from a restaurant near his office, so he didn’t have to go out and buy some for himself.
Finally, I do not watch The Bachelorette, but I was fascinated with this recap of last night’s finale, wherein The Bachelorette — crippled by insecurity, after getting engaged and then dumped on The Bachelor — chose an alt-right troll as her beau. Gross.
(Going with old school Beckinsale for the Trump replacement photo today, and for those of you who are always arguing that mediocre white men always fail upward, well, Counterpoint: Josh Hartnett).