Daily Archives: May 10, 2018

The Trump Swamp: ‘pay to play’ corruption

Over the weekend the New York Times and the Washington Post did some excellent investigative reporting into the shady finances of Donald Trump and his consigliere Michael Cohn. The more we learn about Cohn’s “pay to play” scheme, and the two pending lawsuits challenging Trump’s “pay tp play” scheme under the emoluments clauses of the U.S. Constitution, the more this feckless GOP-controlled Congress has an obligation to investigate Trump’s tax records and financial dealings as president to “drain the swamp”: this is the most corrupt administration in recent American history.

Steve Benen has a decent short summary, The closer one looks at Trump’s finances, the louder the questions become:

Last summer, Donald Trump sat down with the New York Times, which asked whether Special Counsel Robert Mueller will have crossed “a red line” if the investigation into the Russia scandal extends to include examinations of the resident’s finances. “I would say yeah. I would say yes,” he replied, adding, “I think that’s a violation.”

Naturally, this generated no shortage of speculation as to why Trump is so concerned about scrutiny of his finances. For that matter, there’s no reason to separate questions about the president’s finances with the Russia scandal – because as Rachel Maddow has explained on her show more than once, there’s an amazing number of people from Russia who’ve purchased Trump properties over the years. (My personal favorite is the story of Dmitry Rybolovlev, the fertilizer king, who purchased a derelict Florida estate from the future president at an extreme markup.)

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Good News at the End of Legislative Session!

Environmental Day at the AZ State Capital

I guess we all can use some good news…

First, I want to thank all of you who signed or shared Sustainable Tucson’s letter to TEP asking the company to transition faster to clean energy and not install the 10 RICE gas-fired engines. Barbara L. Sherry and Billy Kovacs US Democratic Congressional Candidates AZ 02 came through for us!

The Arizona state legislative session has ended and we have some good reasons to celebrate! Our advocacy paid off with several of the bills that we opposed not passing! Yay!

Advocates! We saved a seat for you!

Partner in advocacy Sandy Bahr shared the Sierra Club’s legislative report:

On the good news front, the Arizona Legislature did not refer HCR2017 Now: renewable energy standards; corporation commission. This proposed legislative referral intended to confuse voters and compete with and block the citizen initiative, Clean Energy for a Healthy Arizona, which seeks to increase our renewable energy standard to 50 percent by 2030.

None of the remaining bad water bills advanced this session! Thanks to everyone who helped keep up the pressure and make it known that backsliding is not acceptable when it comes to water adequacy and protection of the San Pedro River.

HB2512 water program amendments (Bowers) is a water omnibus bill that contains a number of provisions, but the most harmful aspect would weaken adequacy requirements for areas such as Cochise County and could cause further harm to the San Pedro River. This bill died in the Senate as it did not go to Committee of the Whole.

HB2553 adequate water supply; county review (Bowers) is a stand-alone bill for weakening the adequacy requirements for areas such as Cochise County and further threatening the San Pedro River. This also died due to lack of action in the Senate COW.

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