but why?
January 6, 2020

Lincoln Chafee isn't taking no for an answer.

Chafee was elected to the U.S. Senate as a Republican in Rhode Island, was defeated in 2006 after one full term, successfully ran for governor as an independent in 2010, switched to the Democratic Party in 2013, declined to seek re-election in 2014 due to enduring dismal poll numbers, and briefly ran for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination in 2015. On Sunday, Chafee filed to run for president in 2020 on the Libertarian Party ticket, The Intercept's Lee Fang noticed Sunday evening.

Chafee, who moved to Wyoming after dropping out of the 2016 race, will formally announce his candidacy on Wednesday at the National President Club in Washington, his campaign treasurer, Caswell Cook Jr., told the Providence Journal. His website, registered last September, touts Chafee's "thirty years, zero scandals," and declares: "Protect Our Freedoms. Tell The Truth. No More Wars. No More Reckless Spending."

"The news may spur concern among Democrats about the possibility Chafee could siphon votes away from their party's eventual nominee in what is expected to be a tough race against President Trump," writes Ted Nesi at WPRI 12 in Providence. "The 2016 Libertarian ticket of Gary Johnson and Bill Weld received about 4.5 million votes nationwide. (Weld is now challenging Trump for the GOP nomination.)" And if the Libertarians don't take him, there's always the Green Party. Peter Weber

November 14, 2019

On Wednesday, over the course of seven hours, Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) posted 23 tweets, all pertaining to the public impeachment hearings going on over at the House Intelligence Committee. In reverse chronological order, the first words of each tweet were: "Evidence," "President," "Schiff," "The," "Every," "It's," "No," "Democrats," "It," "Donald," "Neither," "The," "Kent," "In," "Let," "Lying," "Hillary," "It's," "Maxine," "Schiff," "Even," "Let's," and "Finally." Taking the first letter of each of those words, you get: "Epstein didn't kill himself."

Why would Gosar, a dentist by trade who is perhaps most famous for six of his siblings opposing his last re-election bid, take the time and effort to spell that out, acrostic-like, about Jeffrey Epstein's death while in federal prison? He didn't say. But he did seem pleased with his effort — and his joke.

"Area 51"? Get it? Apropos of nothing, the current salary for members of Congress is $174,000 a year. Peter Weber

October 8, 2019

On Monday, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) released a letter to National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien expressing his deep concern about "reports that the Trump administration is withdrawing from the Open Skies Treaty" and urging the administration to abandon "such a reckless action."

The treaty, in force since 2002 with 34 nations as signatories, "aims to increase confidence in and transparency of military activities, particularly in Europe, by allowing unarmed aerial observation flights over the entire territory of its participants for information-gathering purposes," the Arms Control Association explains. Specifically, "the Open Skies Treaty allows the United States and our allies and partners in Europe to monitor Russian military deployment," especially in Ukraine, Engels said, and "American withdrawal would only benefit Russia."

It isn't clear that Trump's odd relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin is behind the prospective switch.

Of course, Russia and former National Security Adviser John Bolton could both want to scrap the treaty.

Engels asked that before Trump burn the treaty, the decision be put through "a transparent process that includes a thorough interagency review and consultation with Congress." Peter Weber

April 24, 2018

Jazz musician turned Schoolhouse Rock! composer Bob Dorough died Monday at 94, WNEP reported.

And he was more than just a Bill … er, Bob.

Dorough kicked off his career in 1956 with an album titled Devil May Care. Miles Davis rerecorded the title track and turned it into a jazz standard, per NPR.

Despite that success, Dorough still had a day job at an advertising agency with a boss whose kids couldn't remember multiplication tables. Dorough's boss asked Dorough to set the math to music, and Schoolhouse Rock! was born.

After penning Three is a Magic Number and other multiplication hits, Schoolhouse Rock! was sold to ABC and Dorough stayed on to continue writing educational jams. He didn't love creating grammar songs, per NPR, but Conjunction Junction still became one of his most well-known tunes.

Celebrate Dorough's legacy with this live performance of Conjunction Junction in 2014. Kathryn Krawczyk

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