Tweet of the Day: Can We Even Call It Lying Anymore?

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From Vox’s Dylan Matthews:

Donald Trump has changed Washington. There was a time when Republicans would have strained to make excuses for a piece of legislation like this. Heritage would have churned out white papers, data would have been cherry picked, words would have been twisted, and the spin would have been dizzying. That’s politics. As recently as a couple of months ago, this was still the case for the original health care bill. Remember Paul Ryan’s PowerPoint presentation?

Not anymore. Like Trump, Republican politicians now just say whatever they want. There’s no longer any pretense of retaining even a nodding acquaintance with the facts. TrumpCare is going to benefit the rich. No it won’t. TrumpCare will do away with protections for pre-existing conditions. No it won’t. TrumpCare will rob 24 million people of health coverage. No it won’t. TrumpCare will take Medicaid away from the poor. No it won’t.

That’s it. Just make the assertions and then sign off. TrumpCare is going to cover everyone, it bans any discrimination based on pre-existing conditions, it will make health care more affordable, it will reduce deductibles, and it will be great for older people. Gotta go now. Thanks for having me on your show.

I’m not sure anymore what you do about this. Is it even lying per se? The sky is green. Scientists say it’s blue. It’s green. It’s always been blue. It’s green. I just looked out the window. It’s blue. It’s green. It’s right here on my monitor. It’s green. Thanks for the interview, congressman.

But some people are still telling the truth. Nancy Pelosi is currently on the floor of the House: “It’s a tax bill, not a health care bill.” Yep. And the House will be voting on it in five or ten minutes.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

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It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

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We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

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Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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