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Cognitive Decline? Trump Brags About Putting His Pants On by Himself

Donald Trump is proud of his heroic struggles to dress himself.

Donald Trump raises his right fist as if in victory. A man who is likely his bodyguard is in the background.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Donald Trump rallied at a park in the Bronx on Thursday to an adoring crowd of hundreds of current and future Florida residents, alongside rappers accused of murder, while rambling about putting his pants on.

During his speech, Trump referred to imaginary business executives while reliving his glory days as a racist housing developer. “Some of the greatest days of my business career were in the toughest times,” Trump said from prewritten remarks. “But I enjoyed waking up every single morning and—go to battle,” he continued, veering off script.

“A lot of people say to me today, the toughest business people, people that you know about, ‘Could I ask you a question: How do you do it?’ I say, ‘Do what?’”

Trump then proceeded to have an imaginary conversation with himself and unnamed Toughest Business People begging him to tell them how he puts his pants on. “‘How do you get up in the morning and put your pants on? Why do you put those pants on?’ ‘I’ll explain it to you someday’ ‘How do you do it? How do you get up? How?’”

The tangent appeared to be intended to boast of Trump’s strength but ultimately served as a conduit for his greatest weakness: his tendency to ramble incoherently. The stumble is one in a series of particularly nonsensical gaffes the 77-year old Trump has had lately, raising questions about his mental acuity. Recent polling shows six in 10 Americans have doubts about Trump’s—and Biden’s—aging mental capability.

Trump Is Suddenly Very Worried About Protesters

Trump cheered on demonstrators on January 6—and has mocked Biden for expected protests at the DNC. But now he’s the one worried about big crowds.

A man wearing a bull horn headdress and red, white, and blue facepaint cackles after breaking into the United States Capitol.
Win McNamee/Getty Images
The “QAnon shaman” in the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021

The presidential candidate who stood and watched as scores of his supporters rampaged through the U.S. Capitol is being proactive about security for the Republican National Convention in July.

The Trump campaign has decided that the Secret Service’s current security plans don’t provide enough clearance between the GOP event and its liberal protesters. In a letter to Secret Service Director Kim Cheatle, the campaign described the current programmed distance between the Milwaukee event and its protesters as an “unacceptable” and “critical flaw.” Specifically, it requests that the agency add the inclusion of a nearby park—effectively an extra one-block cushion area—to the security perimeter in a preemptive effort to keep thousands of the event’s anticipated detractors far away from its attendees.

Trump is not the only politico to request the change, though he’s almost certainly the loudest. Some of the biggest GOP lawmakers in the country have already made the special request, including House Speaker Mike Johnson, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Senators Ron Johnson and Rick Scott.

“To date, the local USSS team has been unresponsive to the RNC’s reasonable proposal, as set out in my April 26 letter, to alleviate these safety risks through a very modest alteration of the Perimeter—namely, to expand a small portion of the Security Perimeter approximately one block to the East to encapsulate the Park,” wrote Republican National Committee counsel Todd Steggerda in the letter.

The city of Milwaukee did not agree with the Trump campaign’s assessment of the security perimeter. Milwaukee’s director of communications Jeff Fleming told ABC News that the city did not identify “any critical flaws” in the security plan and that it is coordinating with “multiple agencies” to ensure a safe event for everyone involved.

Senate Republicans Kill Their Own Border Deal to Suck Up to Trump

Republicans just helped kill their own border bill—again.

Andrew Harnik/Getty Images

A border bill negotiated by Republicans and Democrats has died in the Senate—with the help of lots of opposition from Republicans, including the bill’s main author.

Senators voted 43–50 to take down the bill, an attempt to renew a border proposal that was tanked earlier this year thanks to Donald Trump.

In February, Republicans killed an attempt to pass a bill for border security, also a product of bipartisan negotiations. Back then, several Republicans called out Trump and the rest of their party for killing a bill that essentially gave the GOP what they wanted: rather draconian immigration restrictions. Back then, Speaker Mike Johnson and Trump were more afraid of handing the Democrats a win than they were of a supposedly insecure southern U.S. border. Months later, that again seems to be the case.

This time, even the bill’s authors, such as Senators James Lankford, an Oklahoma Republican, and Kyrsten Sinema, an independent for herself, voted against advancing the legislation. The GOP, hypocritically, also sees the vote as a political boost to President Biden.

​​“Today is not a bill, today is a prop,” said Lankford on the Senate floor before the vote. “Everyone sees it for what it is.” This is especially ironic, considering that Lankford was among those Republicans who called B.S. the last time a border deal failed.

Some Democrats also voted to kill the bill due to other issues. “It fails to address the root causes of migration or to establish more lawful pathways,” Senator Alex Padilla, a California Democrat, told the Associated Press.

Meanwhile, Republicans still use fearmongering and racist tropes whenever the issue of immigration comes up, especially when they are up for reelection. No matter how much danger they claim Americans are in from an unsecure southern border, they still would rather use it as a talking point against Democrats instead of actually doing something about it.

The Surprising Figure Who Thinks Judge Cannon Is Doing a Terrible Job

Ty Cobb, who represented the former president during Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation, criticized the judge overseeing Trump’s document case during a recent TV interview.

Donald Trump purses his lips and holds his palms up while wearing a read "Make America Great Again" hat.
Nic Antaya/Getty Images
Donald Trump at a rally on May 1.

On Thursday, former Trump White House attorney Ty Cobb accused Judge Aileen Cannon, the federal judge overseeing his ex-boss’s classified documents case, of “incompetence,” insisting that there’s more than enough evidence—and time—to take the case to trial before Election Day.

“I don’t think this case will move at all,” Cobb said on CNN. “And I think the fact that she’s scheduling hearings, multiple hearings, sort of one or two motions at a time, is compelling evidence of that. Most federal judges would have long ago ruled on all the pending motions.”

“And frankly, this is a case that should’ve started trial yesterday or two days ago when the original trial date was set,” he continued. “This case could have easily gotten to trial. Only her incompetence and perceived bias has prevented that.”

Earlier this month, the Trump-appointed judge ordered a stay on the GOP presidential nominee’s legal requirement to give the government advance notice of which classified materials will be discussed—but offered no expiration date for the theoretically temporary reprieve. Legal analysts have worried that a strategy of continual delays could be the Trump-appointed judge’s way of surreptitiously dismissing the trial altogether.

Cobb also accused Cannon of simply failing to understand the case—or the determination of the serial fraudster being tried.

“Trump has a consistent record of lying about the judicial process, and his perception of that process is really odd,” Cobb said, pointing to Trump’s accusation that the Biden administration had authorized the FBI to shoot him during its search and seizure of Mar-a-Lago—a claim that was, in actuality, a wild, willful misread of a standard policy statement regarding the use of deadly force.

Louisiana Republicans Pass Most Draconian Law Yet on Abortion Pill

The alarming bill classifies the abortion pill as a “controlled dangerous substance”—and it’s all but guaranteed to become law.

Hands with green nail polish hold a small box that reads "Mifepritone Tablet 200 mg"
Shuran Huang for The Washington Post/Getty Images

Louisiana Republicans have passed a draconian bill classifying abortion pills as schedule IV “controlled dangerous substances”—and threatening anyone in possession of the pill without a prescription with prison and thousands of dollars in fines. The legislation is expected to be signed by Republican Governor Jeff Landry.

The soon-to-be law will go after both mifepristone and misoprostol, commonly known simply as the abortion pill. Prior to its final passage in the state Senate on Thursday, health care providers warned the bill will make it more difficult to treat miscarriages, as the legislation requires special licensing and controlled distribution of abortion pills.

Under Louisiana law, possession of a schedule IV controlled dangerous substance includes a fine up to $5,000, jail time from one to five years, or both. Distribution or possession with intent to distribute carries a fine up to $15,000 and imprisonment up to 10 years.

Louisiana legislation has steadily restricted access to the abortion pill in recent years. Legislation passed in 2022 banned abortion pills by mail, required abortion pills to be administered by a physician—not a nurse or other health care worker—and mandated any administration to be reported to the state’s Department of Health. When that law took effect, two abortion providers in the state shut down.

Conservatives have been working to ban abortion pills, used to terminate pregnancy in its first 10 weeks, since the overturning of Roe. The two-part abortion pill was first developed in France in the 1980s, with the Food and Drug Administration finally approving its distribution in the U.S. in 2000. By 2023, chemically induced abortions accounted for 63 percent of abortions nationwide. Anti-abortion activists have falsely claimed the pills are dangerous and that their effects can be reversed, while health care professionals insist they are the safest way to terminate early term pregnancies, including miscarriage.

North Carolina Becomes the Latest Victim of a Far-Right Scam

UNC has caved to a conservative campaign to roll back DEI policies nationwide.

Two female students (one white, one black) walk in front of a building at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.
Eros Hoagland/Getty Images

Handing a major win to a manufactured conservative campaign to dismantle safeguards for equality, the governing board of North Carolina’s 17 public university systems on Thursday banned its diversity, equity, and inclusion policy.

The move follows a last-minute plea from lawmakers, students, and business leaders who gathered at the state legislature on Wednesday to urge against the ban and extol the virtues of DEI programs.

“Our world has become so different, and it’s changing so rapidly, and North Carolina is evolving alongside these global changes,” state Representative Maria Cervania said during the last-minute meeting on Wednesday. “Our businesses know this. They’ve told us they want a workforce that can keep up with our new, globalized world. DEI is actually the best program that’s helping equip our students for that.”

The Board of Governors for the UNC system unanimously approved the university DEI policy in 2019, according to local news outlet WRAL. Following the anti-racism and anti-police brutality protests of 2020, conservatives have sharpened their knives to dismantle hallmarks of racial progress. Those attacks resulted in a manufactured crisis over critical race theory, arguing it’s bad to teach college students factual—but ugly—U.S. history. Soon after, the same people targeted DEI by arguing it’s “reverse discrimination,” a concept that does not exist.

UNC’s board—which initially approved its DEI policy unanimously—plans to replace DEI with a new policy that prohibits universities from “endorsing pro-diversity views—or any other social or political messaging,” WRAL reported Wednesday, an all-or-nothing claim that, if precedent is any indicator, will more than likely only be enforced in one direction.

Mike Johnson Embraces Racist Conspiracy Theory Loved by Mass Shooters

The House speaker is openly embracing the “great replacement” theory.

House Speaker Mike Johnson speaking
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

The Speaker of the House just echoed a racist conspiracy theory—one that has inspired mass shooters and hate crimes.

On Fox News Thursday morning, Mike Johnson expounded on the “great replacement” theory—the idea that Democrats and other elites are allowing mass illegal immigration to displace white people and create a loyal voting base.

“Why would the president allow this? Because they wanted to turn these people into voters. That’s plain. And they want to change the outcome of the Census in six years. It sounds sinister, and it is, and they’ve exacted untold damage on the country,” Johnson said.

The theory has been cited by several mass shooters, notably the man who murdered 10 people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, two years ago and a shooter who killed 20 at an El Paso Walmart in 2019. And Johnson is not the first conservative to parrot this kind of bigotry. Every so often, right-wing influencers like to bring it up, particularly during election years, causing like-minded politicians to quickly repost it. TV host Tucker Carlson has helped fuel it, and members of Congress like Representatives Elise Stefanik and Matt Gaetz, as well as Senator J.D. Vance, have all repeated it. Recently, Elon Musk has amplified the theory to his millions of followers on X (formerly Twitter).

As the man third in line to the presidency, Johnson should know better than to push this racist ideology, but he’s alluded to undocumented immigrants voting before, despite having no proof. Leaving aside the moral issues with the theory, the Biden administration has also deported many undocumented immigrants, with his immigration policies even being attacked from the left.

It’s telling that Johnson has mentioned this theory at a time when his party is in disarray and as he’s trying to shore up support from the far right with an eye on November. Today’s leaders of the Republican Party think that racist immigration stances are the way to political victory, even though that’s been thoroughly disproven.

Trump Says He Can Free Wrongly Imprisoned Reporter—but Won’t

The former president boasts that, if reelected, he'll use his close friendship with Vladimir Putin to free Evan Gershkovich, a Wall Street Journal reporter who has been imprisoned in Russia for more than a year.

Russian President Vladimir Putin smiles wryly as he looks into Donald Trump's eyes as Trump is blathering on about something or other.
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin having a moment in 2017

Donald Trump believes that his close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin would lead to the freedom of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who has been imprisoned in the country for over a year—but he’s apparently not willing to use that power unless he wins another term.

“Evan Gershkovich, the Reporter from The Wall Street Journal, who is being held by Russia, will be released almost immediately after the Election, but definitely before I assume Office,” Trump wrote on Truth Social on Thursday. “He will be HOME, SAFE, AND WITH HIS FAMILY. Vladimir Putin, President of Russia, will do that for me, but not for anyone else, and WE WILL BE PAYING NOTHING!”

To an extent, Trump’s approach is nothing new: Republicans have been interfering in diplomatic efforts undertaken by Democratic presidents for decades to bolster their electoral chances. What is novel, however, is that Trump is openly sabotaging President Joe Biden’s efforts to bring a wrongly detained American journalist home.  

In 1968, then–presidential candidate Richard Nixon employed Anna Chennault to undermine Vietnam peace talks that were taking place in Paris, delaying the end of the war and bolstering the former vice president’s chances of taking the White House. Twelve years later, in a successful bid to dampen President Jimmy Carter’s chances for reelection, former Texas Governor John Connally met with Middle Eastern leaders in 1980 to strategically delay the release of American hostages being held in Iran until after the presidential election. Doing so practically helped contribute to Ronald Reagan’s landslide victory and ushered in a new era of conservatism under President Ronald Reagan.

Regardless of the precedent, Trump is employing Gershkovich in a cynical, disturbing, and dehumanizing manner. In the former president’s version of events, Gershkovich is not a man being wrongly held in prison by one of America’s adversaries, but a political prop being used to advertise Trump’s close relationship to Vladimir Putin. If Trump really can help free Gershkovich, he should do it now—not in six months. Or never. 

Joe Biden Just Did Something Huge About Ticketmaster Ruining Our Lives

The Justice Department has announced a major lawsuit against Ticketmaster and Live Nation. This could change everything.

A hand holds a phone that reads "Ticketmaster"
Gabby Jones/Bloomberg/Getty Images

The Justice Department on Thursday filed a massive antitrust lawsuit against Ticketmaster and its parent company, Live Nation, accusing them of holding an illegal monopoly on live event tickets and driving up prices.

The suit comes after Ticketmaster crashed and prevented people from purchasing tickets to Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour—inadvertently exposing the ticketing giant’s monopoly on the shows—and argues that Ticketmaster acted like a Mafia don for venues and artists alike by requiring lengthy exclusive contracts, threatening lost revenue if they use other ticket sellers, and preventing artists who don’t use Live Nation services from performing at venues with Live Nation contracts.

Attorneys general from 30 states filed the lawsuit in federal court in Manhattan on Wednesday, overseen by U.S. attorney general Merrick Garland, who released a statement announcing the lawsuit:

We allege that Live Nation relies on unlawful, anticompetitive conduct to exercise its monopolistic control over the live events industry in the United States at the cost of fans, artists, smaller promoters, and venue operators. The result is that fans pay more in fees, artists have fewer opportunities to play concerts, smaller promoters get squeezed out, and venues have fewer real choices for ticketing services. It is time to break up Live Nation-Ticketmaster.

Dan Wall, Live Nation’s executive vice president for corporate and regulatory affairs, refuted the suit’s premise, arguing Live Nation’s revenue has declined due to competition and that the suit will have no impact on ticket prices. He included a graph to belay his point, showing the ticket retailer’s revenue significantly lower than that of tech giants Apple, Meta, and Google.

“It was evident in our discussions with the DOJ Front Office that they just did not want to believe the numbers. The data conflicted too much with their preconception that Live Nation belongs in the ranks of the other “tech monopolists” they have targeted,” Wall wrote. “It is also clear that we are another casualty of this Administration’s decision to turn over antitrust enforcement to a populist urge that simply rejects how antitrust law works.”

The Justice Department allowed Live Nation and Ticketmaster to merge in 2010 despite bipartisan opposition to it—so long as they didn’t retaliate against venues for using other vendors for 10 years. A 2019 department investigation found Live Nation repeatedly violated that agreement.

Idiot MAGA Congressman Makes George Santos Look Like a Genius

Republican Representative Andy Ogles was just caught in a huge financial scandal.

Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images

Trump stooge and Republican Representative Andy Ogles has been caught in a major ethics scandal of his own making.

According to 11 amendments that he filed to his campaign finance reports on Wednesday, Ogles didn’t actually loan his campaign $320,000, as he previously claimed. That begs the question: Where did the money come from?

In November, the Tennessee congressman was found to have some irregularities in his campaign reports, thanks to an investigation by a Nashville TV station, NewsChannel 5. Among them was a $320,000 loan to his campaign from himself, even though his personal finance reports didn’t show a place where such a loan could have originated—not even a personal bank account.

In his amendments, Ogles says that his campaign loan was actually $20,000 instead of $320,000, a sizable oversight, and raises the question of what explains the inconsistencies. Former Representative George Santos is currently facing criminal charges for inflating campaign fundraising numbers—after also reporting he loaned himself a sizable amount of money. Santos was later found to have spent campaign dollars on casino trips, Botox treatments, and OnlyFans payments. Is Ogles hiding something like Santos?

It’s not an outlandish question, as the two have one glaring similarity: making up parts of their past. Ogles claimed to have studied policy and economics at Middle Tennessee State University and calls himself an economist, but only has one community college economics course under his belt, which he barely passed. He later claimed on a 2009 résumé to have a degree in international relations, but NewsChannel 5 found that his major was actually liberal studies—a hilarious degree for a Republican politician.

Although Ogles’s lies aren’t nearly as outrageous as Santos’s whoppers, he also has another possible financial crime on his résumé: $25,000 raised supposedly to build a garden in memory of his stillborn child. Except that the garden was never built, and Ogles refuses to say what happened with the money. With a history of lies piling up in his short congressional career, perhaps a criminal investigation of Ogles is necessary.