It has been an eventful week. For all past newsletters (and more), make sure to go to the blog at http://www.electreport.blogspot.com
Senator Franken Accused of Sexual Misconduct
Democratic Senator Al Franken from Minnesota, a former comedian, was accused of sexual misconduct during rehearsal for a skit in 2006. I won’t go into the details, but obviously Franken made many mistakes and did some bad things, and deserves to be reprimanded. The emergence of this story at the same time as the allegations against Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore has allowed some to draw an equivalency between the two men. However, this is wrong - Moore’s accusations show repeated inappropriate behavior against underage girls, while Franken’s acts, while terrible, were an isolated incident and shouldn’t be compared to Moore.
With the House Republicans’ tax reform bill already passed, there isn’t much time left for the Senate to pass their version. It is unclear whether Republicans have enough votes to pass it, with multiple senators indicating they might vote no. And today President Trump tweeted out against retiring Senator Jeff Flake from Arizona, saying “He’ll be a NO on tax cuts because his political career anyway is ‘toast.’” Now who knows what Trump actually knows, but if Trump is indicating a Senator may vote no, that is potentially important.
...Speaking of authoritarian leaders in political disarray, there was a coup against 93-year-old Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe, who has been in power since 1980. There had been competition between Mugabe’s wife, Grace, and his Vice President, Emmerson Mnangagwa, over who will succeed him. Grace Mugabe has been accused of many bizarre things, such as punching a photographer in the face multiple times, and attacking a South African model with an extension cord. Mnangagwa, known as “the crocodile,” was fired earlier this month. In support of Mnangagwa, the army stepped in and staged a coup, and today, Mugabe’s own party removed him as leader. He has not yet resigned, though it is assumed he will resign or be forced out.
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