2017-01-18 / Political Page

Trump’s Big Day, Rudy In Fold

After a year or so, which seemed like an eternity, with Donald Trump disposing of his many Republican opponents, then taking care of Hillary, on Friday it will be Trump’s “huge” day, Inauguration Day, when the presidential crown will be placed on his dome, and he will be sworn in, proclaiming him President of the United States.

No tweet necessary on this day!

But 200,000 women, we’re told, may make their displeasure felt a day later, showing up as the Women’s March on Washington, with the message:

“The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new administration on the first day in office – and to the world – that women’s rights are human rights.”

The dissenting women’s brash message appeared in the Daily News, the ominous announcement appearing on (of all days) Friday the 13th. The story appeared that day with a crowd of angry women carrying a sign declaring: “HATE DOESN’T MAKE AMERICA GREAT.” Sounds like a comment on one of Trump’s messages.

Getting back to Inauguration Day, advance stories about it sounded like Trump’s people were having a hard time getting support for it, with no glitzy Hollywood names participating on Trump’s big day. They did luck out getting an up-and-coming 16-year-old from Pittsburgh, Jackie Evancho, to open the inauguration festivities by singing our national anthem. It helped that she won on the “America’s Got Talent” competition and had performed before Trump one time, singing at his Florida retreat at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach. But at this writing, we haven’t seen any reports detailing the guest list or who will perform, and the big event is just two days away.

Meanwhile, there have been events happening that were aimed at Trump. Last Saturday, nine busloads of immigrant activists from Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island went to Washington DC, flying the flags of their native countries and rainbows and espousing the rights of immigrants. According to one newspaper report, a spokesman from Making the Road New York, one of the rally sponsors, said they didn’t “know what was going to happen after the inauguration,” but they were concerned that undocumented protestors might be arrested by the new administration, so they just wanted to get their voices heard.

TRUMP NAMES GIULIANI ‘CYBERSECURITY’ ADVISOR: Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who had previously declined to pursue a cabinet appointment, has accepted President-elect Donald Trump’s offer of becoming a cybersecurity advisor to the Trump administration.

According to press reports last week, Trump announced on Thursday that he had asked Giuliani to consider sharing “his expertise and insight as a trusted friend,” to meet “from time to time” with Trump and his cabinet members to advise them on cyber threats and Giuliani had accepted.

Giuliani, who has been a private security consultant for 16 years, stated, “we’ve let our defense fall behind – our offense is way ahead of our defense,” and he added, it would be a “great privilege” to accept Trump’s offer.

Giuliani, who had played a key role in Trump’s campaign to win the Republican nomination for president, and again in his campaign against Hillary Clinton in the presidential election, had harbored hopes of getting appointed as Secretary of State by Trump, but after that fizzled, he bowed out without seeking any other cabinet role.

GIANARIS ON CLOSING OF INDIAN POINT: State Senator Michael Gianaris (D–Astoria) released a statement regarding the announced closure of Indian Point Energy Center. He said, “In light of news regarding the closure of Indian Point over the next few years, we must ensure that any replacement power does not further burden already suffering communities. Western Queens already produces a majority of the electricity for the New York metropolitan area, and has the high asthma and emphysema rates to prove it. Make no mistake, I will vigorously fight any efforts to build new power plants in already over-saturated communities.”

The Indian Point Energy Center produces more than 2,000 megawatts of electricity, comprising approximately 20% of the New York City area’s usage.

The official Entergy press release can be found here: http://www.entergynewsroom.com/latestnews/entergy-ny-officials-agree-ind...

CONSTANTINIDES ON INDIAN POINT CLOSING: Upon Governor Cuomo’s announcement on the closure of Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant, Council Member Costa Constantinides, Chair of the Council’s Environmental Protection Committee, said, “…the closure of Indian Point Energy Center will help protect the environment of the nearby area, as over 50% of our city’s power is generated in Western Queens, this closure must not increase the burden on existing fuel-fired power plants in our city. Rather, it should encourage New York to continue to develop clean energy sources. As we phase out the generation of nuclear power in our region, we must also phase out the use of Numbers 4 and 6 fuel oils in power plants throughout our state. These types of dirty fuel oils produce carbon emissions that negatively impact our public health. Now more than ever, New York is leading the way on environmental policy and sustainability.”

KOO, DEPT. OF EDUCATION ON MULTILINGUAL PRE-K INFO SESSION: City Council Member Peter Koo (D–Flushing) joined with representatives from the Department of Education’s School District 25 to announce a multilingual pre-Kindergarten Information Session at the Flushing Library. The City of New York has committed to providing free, full-day, high-quality early childhood education for all 4- year-olds in New York City. This year, the application period for students born in 2013 began on January 17th.

The Pre-K Information Session featured representatives from the DOE’s Office of Student Enrollment and the Family Welcome Center from District 25 who presented a Question and Answer session. Translation for the session was available in Chinese, Korean and Spanish. The session took place at the Flushing Library branch, on January 12th.

Koo stated, “The city’s Pre-K application process can be a daunting experience for firsttime parents, especially if English is not your first language. Naturally, parents have many questions when enrolling their child in school for the first time, so we decided to host this multilingual information session so all parents in our community are well informed about their options for early childhood education. I’d like to thank Superintendent DiMango for joining in this effort to ensure all parents, regardless of language, have the right information at their disposal.”

CROWLEY STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF DETECTIVE MCDONALD: Congress Member Joseph Crowley (D–Queens, the Bronx), chairman of the Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement on the passing of NYPD Detective Steven McDonald:

“I am heartbroken to learn of NYPD Detective Steven McDonald’s passing. His story captivated an entire city, his courage inspired us all, and his selflessness and forgiveness to the person who shot him over 30 years ago was a lesson in humility that will forever be associated with the name Steven McDonald. Through insurmountable odds, Steven persevered to continue serving New Yorkers in new ways. He helped bring communities together both here and abroad, by reminding us all to appeal to our better selves. His loss will be felt by the countless lives he touched and I express my most sincere condolences to his family and the entire NYPD community during this difficult time.”

GIANARIS LEGISLATION PROTECTS IMMIGRANTS FROM DISCRIMINATION, ABUSE: Senator Michael Gianaris introduced legislation that would add immigration status to the list of protected classes in the state’s Human Rights and Civil Right Laws. Gianaris’ proposal would make it a violation to discriminate against a person based on immigration status, and would expand current civil remedies for bias-related crimes to include those targeted due to their immigration status.

“Immigrants are under siege like never before, and we have an obligation to ensure the safety and well-being of those who came to our country seeking a better life,” said Gianaris, whose own parents came to the US from Greece.

New York’s Human Rights Law protects people from a wide range of discrimination on the basis of age, race, sexual orientation and gender, among other categories. The law provides a remedy for those discriminated against in the provision of several services, including but not limited to housing, employment and public accommodation. Current Civil Rights Law, which would also expand to include immigration status under this legislation, provides the opportunity for victims of hate crimes to bring civil actions against their attackers.

New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna Lieberman said, ”With our president elect threatening to deport millions of immigrants who came to America to build a better life for themselves and their families, this bill is one way to resist the hate and stand up for a free New York.”

Steven Choi, Executive Director of the New York Immigration Coalition said, ”We commend state Senator Gianaris for introducing this bill calling to include “immigration status” in the definition of “national origin” in anti-discrimination law. Given the current political climate that has been marked by an increase in hate crimes, it is more important than ever that we ensure that New Yorkers, including undocumented New Yorkers, legal permanent residents, visa holders, and others, are equally protected.”

Following the election, documented incidents of hate crimes, harassment and intimidation soared throughout the country including here in New York. Gianaris joined civil rights groups to condemn local hate crimes, as well as the overall hostile climate.

SCHUMER OPPOSES SESSIONS FOR ATTORNEY GENERAL: US Senator Charles E. Schumer released the following statement in opposition to confirming Senator Jeff Sessions as Attorney General Sessions, a Republican from Alabama, has been nominated by President-elect Donald Trump to serve as Attorney General in the Trump administration. Schumer stated:

“Senator Jeff Sessions is a colleague and a friend. We have worked closely together on a number of different issues, particularly trade, over our years of service in the Senate together.

“The Attorney General of the United States has a sacred obligation to enforce our laws and uphold the constitution. The law gives a voice to the voiceless, it protects the oppressed from the powerful, and it defends the rights of all people, regardless of gender, sexuality, or religion. The Attorney General must wake up every single day ensuring the rights of all Americans: immigrants, minorities, young and old, gay and straight, disabled of not are protected. Every right – freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the freedom to vote, or any other enshrined in our Constitution or the law – must be protected for every American.

“The Attorney General is also tasked with ensuring that the President and the administration follow the law, pursuing policies that adhere to American values and ideals, and serving as a check to ensure the President is not above the law. If the President violates the law, it is incumbent on the Attorney General to hold him or her accountable.

“After reviewing his record and giving careful consideration to his answers during the hearing, I am not confident in Senator Sessions’ ability to be a defender of the rights of all Americans, or to serve as an independent check on the incoming administration. I am also deeply concerned by his views on immigration, which I saw firsthand during the push for comprehensive immigration reform. For those reasons, I will oppose his nomination to serve as the next Attorney General.”

Schumer, the Senates Democratic leader, may gather his Democratic members to vote against Sessions, but Republican Senators could have enough votes to confirm him.

ADDABBO SUPPORTS SLEEP APNEA TESTING OF MTA EMPLOYEES: “In light of the most recent updates regarding the Long Island Rail Road train derailment, which injured 130 passengers on the Far Rockaway rail line last week, I feel it is imperative to the general safety of all passengers that the LIRR and MTA require all conductors test for sleep apnea and other forms of sleep-related illnesses.

“Furthermore, I applaud New York Senator Chuck Schumer for calling on the MTA to address this issue, which could have been prevented had the MTA screened its employees for this precondition.”

CROWLEY: GOP’S DANGEROUS AGENDA TO REPEAL HEALTH CARE: Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Queens, the Bronx), Chairman of the Democratic Caucus, on January 13 released the statement below following House passage of Republicans’ Fiscal Year 2017 budget resolution, legislation that would dismantle the Affordable Care Act:

“Republicans have wasted no time in carrying out their dangerous agenda to strip quality and affordable health care from 30 million Americans, and increase costs for millions more. Repealing the Affordable Care Act will have real consequences for real people. To add insult to injury, Republicans still don’t have any plans to replace the law and ensure the health security of the millions of Americans that will be kicked off their insurance. The American people are tired of this little song-and-dance routine Republicans keep doing with their health security. It’s time for Republicans to end their obsession with the Affordable Care Act so we can focus on the pressing issues facing our country.”

MALONEY WARNS ACA REPEAL WILL RAISE DRUG COSTS, CUT CARE FOR SENIORS: Congress Member Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), released the following statement on the importance of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to seniors and their healthcare needs:

“Since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law six years ago, more than 10 million Medicare beneficiaries have saved $20 billion on prescription drug costs, millions more seniors have enjoyed new preventive services and annual wellness exams free of costs, and the Medicare Trust Fund was extended, thanks to new efficiencies from the law.

“Seniors cannot afford the higher costs that will come from the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, especially with Social Security COLAs at or near zero percent over the last few years. That is why I will be fighting tooth and nail against Republican efforts to repeal the ACA and cut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

“The ACA has made healthcare better and more affordable for seniors, enabled more than 20 million individuals to obtain health insurance, made sure that no one can be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, and has held down health care cost increases. Reversing this progress would be incredibly harmful for the country, for seniors, and for the millions of Americans who have gained health coverage thanks to the Affordable Care Act.”

MALONEY: ACA REPEAL WILL INCREASE DEFICIT BY OVER $353B: Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), House Ranking Member on the Joint Economic Committee (JEC), took to the House floor on January 13 to control debate on the budget reconciliation and discuss the economic impact of repealing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on behalf of House Democratic members of the JEC. Following this segment of debate, she released the following statement:

“Beyond the health risks, the reckless repeal of the Affordable Care Act without a real replacement will also wreak economic havoc. We have made considerable and real progress in recovery from the Great Recession, but now, more than three months into Fiscal Year 2017, we’re debating a budget that looks nothing like what the Budget Committee considered last spring. Instead, we’re debating a bill that even the Majority admits is nothing more than a shell to help them repeal the Affordable Care Act.

“Instead of addressing the Majority’s concerns about deficits, this budget explodes the deficit, only to set the stage for repeal of health reform. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office has told us that repeal of the ACA would increase the deficit by $353 billion over 10 years.

“This heartless and reckless plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act threatens to undo our progress – and will turn millions of lives upside down.

“A report issued this month by the Commonwealth Fund and the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University outlined the disastrous economic consequences of the repeal for our entire nation.

“In just the first year of repeal, our economy will lose nearly 2.6 million jobs, 131,000 of them just in New York, and more than $255 billion in economic output. Over the course of five years, our economy will lose more than $1.5 trillion in output. Devastating job loss will not be limited to the healthcare industry; two-thirds, or more than 1.6 million jobs, are in construction, retail, and other sectors.

“This repeal plan would also place massive financial burdens on state budgets. The Commonwealth Fund report estimates that in just the first year, states would lose out on $8.2 billion in tax revenue. Over five years, our states would lose more than $48 billion in tax revenue – including $3.5 billion in losses for New York State – meaning hits to our schools, roads, and fire and police protection. Our state is facing a loss of $89.7 billion in Gross State Product and a $154.1 billion loss in business output.

“With all that is at stake – healthcare for millions, among them 939,000 New Yorkers, and the loss of 2.6 million jobs – it is simply irresponsible to move forward with this budget, and reckless to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a real plan to replace it.”

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