Beginning with the Gingrich radicals who took over the House in 1994, the modern Republican party has been willing to exploit the constitution’s design flaws and the constitutional order’s reliance on informal understandings between political actors to sabotage the functioning of Congress, destroy the Obama presidency, and seize vastly more power than the American people would otherwise have granted it.

“The only way to solve the drug problem is through toughness,” Trump said in remarks he echoed on Monday. However, most experts agree that criminal penalties and “toughness” is not a way to solve drug problems. Recall the Nixon and Reagan administration’s War on Drugs, which were utter failures.

Heated debates over the safety – or lack thereof – of this popular pesticide have spanned the globe and sparked propaganda warfare with each side claiming the other has misrepresented the scientific record. Cancer victims allege Monsanto has “ghost” written research reviews, unduly influenced regulators and created front groups to falsely claim glyphosate safety. Monsanto, meanwhile, asserts multiple studies by international scientists are flawed and politically motivated, and says industry studies demonstrate the product is safe when used as intended.

For many Los Angeles politicians, getting into the hottest show in town was much easier. Instead of making them line up outside the theater, the Pantages came to them, offering each one a coveted pair of tickets to opening night. The theater is owned by the same company that heavily lobbied the city three years ago to keep a lucrative contract after a city commission recommended handing it to rival company Live Nation.

Congress has forgotten the “devastating impact of the financial crisis,” Senator Elizabeth Warren said on Tuesday as Republicans moved closer to relaxing banking regulations implemented after the financial crash of 2008.

Analysis of the Senate bill by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found it would increase the likelihood of a taxpayer-funded bailout of failed banks.

“I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself.”

This old wisecrack is credited to American late-night talk show host and comedian Johnny Carson. Sorry, Johnny, it may be funny, but you’ve got it wrong. Although giving up unhealthy habits like smoking, drinking and rich food will certainly improve your health, giving up sex will not.

George P Bush is the young, half-Hispanic, grandson of the 41st president, nephew of the 43rd and son of a former Florida governor.

When he was elected Texas land commissioner four years ago, that background gave him a significant advantage as a fledgling Republican candidate seemingly on a fast track to stardom. Now, with conservative politics turned on its head by Trumpism, Bush is facing a tough primary election that threatens to doom his political career – and with it, bring to a close his family’s 70-year political dynasty.

Trump has a history of shifting his positions in response to events or advice. Before he entered the political fray in earnest, he expressed support for a ban on assault weapons and “a slightly longer waiting period” to purchase a gun.

But during his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump ran as an unabashedly pro-gun candidate, warning the NRA: “The only way to save our second amendment is to vote for a person that you all know named Donald Trump.”

Livestock raised for food in the US are dosed with five times as much antibiotic medicine as farm animals in other countries, a study revealed.

Higher use of antibiotics, particularly those that are critical for human health – the medicines “of last resort,” which the World Health Organization wants banned from use in animals – is associated with rising resistance to the drugs and the rapid evolution of “superbugs” that can kill or cause serious illness.

Hurricane Maria devastated the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico in late September of last year, and residents are still struggling to regain their footing. Many residents still struggle to find clean water. Medical care remains scarce as many hospitals limp toward becoming fully operational.

While work continues slowly on restoring power, the tremendous destruction has resulted in a cascade of further problems, including job losses, foreclosures, a decrease in neighborhood police presence and a resulting increase in violent crimes.

Donald Trump’s current approval rating in Gallup’s weekly poll is just 38 percent, with 57 percent saying they disapprove. What is surprising about this isn’t that he has the lowest approval ratings of any president in recent history, but that 38% of Americans still approve of the man that has been called “The worst president ever.”

While most voters said Trump is not level-headed, honest or even fit to serve as president, some still approve of him. And that’s the problem. 

Today, even those whose job it is to sit in bunkers and await a signal to launch nuclear weapons— are tested three times per month on their ability to execute protocols. They are required to score at least 90 percent. Testing is not required for their commander in chief to be able to execute a protocol, much less his ability to demonstrate the high-level thinking that would set this process in motion.

A growing list of powerful men have faced serious consequences for sexual misconduct allegations, but the most powerful one of all has faced none. Instead, Donald Trump’s official position, as his spokeswoman Sarah Sanders recently clarified in a White House press briefing, is that the 20 women accusing him of assault and harassment are lying. Trump has also suggested some were not attractive enough for him to want to sexually assault.

This has been quite a year for America and the world. By most yardsticks, our nation seems to be going backwards: We have a billionaire president that shows no hesitation to making claims that are patently false. We have deepened the gap between rich and poor, made healthcare and college education further out of reach, eliminated environmental protections, and gave hefty tax breaks to the ultra wealthy. Here is a bit of this turbulent year in photos.

Republicans muscled the largest tax overhaul in 30 years through the Senate early Saturday, and in doing so, took off their masks and revealed to the world their true nature: that they only care about corporations and the wealthy, and that despite their repeated campaign promises to help the middle class and the poor, they never had any intentions of fulfilling those empty words that stir so many citizens to cast a vote against their own interests.

When the crowd chanted “Lock her up!” about Hillary Clinton, Michael Flynn smiled. “You’re damn right,” he told last year’s Republican national convention. “You’re exactly right. There’s nothing wrong with that! And you know why we’re saying that? We’re saying that because if I – a guy who knows this business – if I did a tenth of what she did, I would be in jail today.”

Who were the worst American presidents? While it takes a rare combination of qualities such as strength of character, high principles, veracity, good judgment, and political skills to be considered the best of presidents, it takes a combination of persistent lying; failure to exercise good judgment; scandals; policies that weaken the country and hurt the economy; favoritism and cronyism; tax policy that enriches the elite while harming others; attacks on public institutions such as education, the arts, the environment, and a free and open media; and a general dereliction of duties, to be considered among the worst. The presidents listed below all shared some or more of those traits.

Congressional Republicans have argued that the tax overhaul will launch so much economic growth that it will generate additional revenue, allowing cuts to pay for themselves. But the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget said that it would not generate the kind of growth needed to pay for itself, and indeed, recent estimates from the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation found that both the House and Senate versions of a tax overhaul would add around $1.4 trillion in debt in order to pay for the tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations.