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PBC News & Comment: Budget Bill Passes, Despite Rand Paul Filibuster

Government was technically shut down briefly overnight, as Senate, then House pass debt-funded budget, splintering both parties amid massive dysfunction…–Rand Paul exposed deep Republican hypocrisy, including his own

–Paul Krugman observes that GOP never really cared about deficits, used the rhetoric to block Obama

–billionaire vs billionaire lawsuit abruptly ends mid-trial in San Francisco, as Uber settles with Google’s Waymo over theft of robot car technology

–Winter Olympics in South Korea offer intrigue and diplomacy, as Kom Jong Un’s sister meets S. Korean president Moon, and Mike Pence talks human rights

Buzzfeed says “it’s clear” that Russian hacking of DNC is connected to hacking of World Anti-Doping Agency

–as we await release of House Intel Democratic rebuttal memo, crews are building partitions between Dem and GOP staff in committee offices

–at ConsortiumNews, Coleen Rowley and Nat Parry take on the mobilization planned if Trump fires Mueller

–in op-ed, international lawyer Ian Wilkie says Defense Secretary Mattis has admitted there’s no evidence that Syria used sarin gas in Ghouta or Khan Sheikoun

WashPost reports that Trump rarely reads his daily intel briefing, likes videos and graphics

VICE takes a break from its general support for US foreign policy, declares US is propping up a dictatorship in Honduras

–already slammed for handling of wife-beater Rob Porter’s White House exit, John Kelly tells staffers to lie about it

–MeToo produces “collateral damage” as producer Jill Messick’s suicide is blamed on Harvey Weinstein and Rose McGowan

–California Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia, leader of MeToo in legislature, is accused of groping male staffer

–yesterday in Sacramento, feds hold only hearing on plan to drill for oil off the coast, which turned out to be a silly “open house”

–at Shadowproof, Kevin Gosztola details how ICE is targeting activist immigrants for deportation

–in San Francisco, asylum hearing leads to arrest of Sudanese refugee

–after detailed analysis, the Cook Report says that Dems could win back control of the House in November