Nel's New Day

October 22, 2022

DDT’s Troubles Multiply

The House January 6 investigative committee has issued a formal subpoena for testimony and documents from Deposed Donald Trump (DDT): November 4 is the deadline for materials related to DDT’s efforts to overturn the election, and November 14 is the closing date for his testimony. Part of the 10-page statement from Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and vice chair Liz Cheney (R-WY):

“As demonstrated in our hearings, we have assembled overwhelming evidence, including from dozens of your former appointees and staff, that you personally orchestrated and oversaw a multipart effort to overturn the 2020 presidential election and to obstruct the peaceful transition of power.”

Steve Bannon’s four-month prison sentence for refusing a subpoena, the first conviction for contempt of Congress, is an example if DDT doesn’t show up. Bannon is upset about even a light sentence from a DDT-appointed judge for his crime and called it “radically partisan.” Supposedly DDT told advisers he’d be willing to testify live before the committee, but they don’t expect him to follow through.

DDT can delay the subpoenas through the courts as he usually does, “testify” by using the Fifth Amendment not to answer which incriminates him, refuse the subpoena in contempt of court making him look like a coward, or answer questions—which has a one percent of doing. Any one of the four leaves him open to criminal proceedings.

Nineteen categories of document requests including communications with Roger Stone, former Secret Service agent Anthony Ornato, attorneys John Eastman and Sidney Powell, Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), and over a dozen other officials, associates, and members of extremist groups such as the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers. The committee also wants the “information sufficient to identify every telephone or other communications device” DDT used from November 3, 2020, to January 20, 2021 and specifies communications conducted on Signal—an encrypted phone messaging application—on any personal devices, or any communications conducted by any other means.

Some of DDT’s alleged actions in the committee’s three-page letter to him:

“Purposely and maliciously disseminating false allegations of fraud,” “attempting to corrupt the Department of Justice,” “illegally pressuring state officials and legislators,” “orchestrating and overseeing” the fake-electors scheme,” “corruptly pressuring your own Vice President,” “pressuring Members of Congress to object to valid slates of electors from several states,” “filing false information, under oath, in federal court,” and summoning and deploying his followers “knowing they were angry and some were armed.”

“In short, you were at the center of the first and only effort by any U.S. President to overturn an election and obstruct the peaceful transition of power, ultimately culminating in a bloody attack on our own Capitol and on the Congress itself.”

Requesting a president to testify before Congress is not unprecedented. After they left office, John Quincy Adams, John Tyler, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Herbert Hoover, Harry Truman, and Gerald Ford testified. President Richard Nixon provided evidence in response to congressional subpoenas, and sitting presidents Abraham Clinton and Bill Clinton testified. President Roosevelt explained:

“An ex-President is merely a citizen of the United States, like any other citizen, and it is his plain duty to try to help this committee or respond to its invitation.”

The public now knows that some of the highly sensitive documents seized left lying around at Mar-a-Lago included intelligence about Iran and China, one about Iran’s missile program, that could expose methods of gathering information necessary to keep hidden. Leaks could cause retaliation against the U.S. Some of the documents are so sensitive that FBI personnel and DOJ attorneys “required additional clearances before they were permitted to review certain documents.” Classified documents are still missing, according to the National Archives. Maybe at his Bedminster golf resort?  

Fox network compared these materials to “mementos” and compared them to “overdue library books.” DDT has returned to the National Archives and the FBI of trying to frame him by planting the documents.

No criminal referral to the DOJ has been issued—yet. But the DOJ doesn’t have to have a recommendation from Congress to indict DDT.

DDT is also squabbling with his own “special master,” Raymond Dearie, about whether a few records are “personal” and “privileged.” In a phone call with both sides, Dearie said he didn’t understand how DDT could claim records are in both categories. DDT claims that documents, including immigration policies, are his personal property, but the DOJ disagrees. The agency asserts that all documentary materials created or received by a president, his staff, or his office in the course of official activities are government property and thus should go to the National Archives. Dearie said that DDT’s legal team hadn’t provided substance to explain his claims. DOJ said that a former president cannot use executive privilege to keep executive branch materials from executive branch criminal investigators. DDT hadn’t designated documents as personal while in the White House.

After reviewing hundreds of attorney John Eastman’s emails, which he claimed were “privileged,” U.S. District Court Judge David Carter determined the committee may have some of them because they were “sufficiently related to and in furtherance of a conspiracy to defraud the United States.” One email informed DDT that some of his allegations and voter fraud “evidence” in the Georgia election lawsuit were wrong. Last March, Carter had ruled that DDT and Eastman “launched a campaign to overturn a democratic election, an action unprecedented in American history.”

DDT knew there was no stolen election, no huge voter fraud. Yet he has lied for two years and fed the same lies to his chosen candidates. Much to the frustration of GOP leadership, he warns Republicans against early and mail-in voting, telling them to wait until Election Day to cast their ballots. According to Carter, Eastman cannot keep confidential communication private because they were part of an attempt to commit a crime or fraud. Carter concluded the communications were to further illegal conduct.

One of the emails from former White House lawyer Eric Herschmann responded to a comment about his edits in Eastman’s emails:

“I will review now. I didn’t send John edits, I explained that I was concerned about the President signing a verification about facts that may not be sustainable upon detailed scrutiny.” 

The newly-revealed emails confirm that DDT signed a court statement under oath, verifying his lies about voter fraud. The bogus “evidence” was used to push the insurrection, incite violence used in attempts to overturn the election, and elect DDT’s chosen candidates in the primary. Other documents prove that DDT’s lawsuits in swing states were only to delay the Electoral College results certification, not for legal relief.

DDT has used his Truth Social to lambast the judiciary. He called Carter a “partisan hack” and judges in John Durham’s inability to find DDT’s supposed truth “biased.” To Republicans, all their failures are a fraud. After DDT quietly sat for a deposition in the E. Jean Carroll defamation trial, he reposted pieces from Rumble to smear her and repeated the insults about her that led to the defamation lawsuit, leading to more proof for Carroll’s claims.

Considering Tony Ornato a “person of interest,”the House committee plans to interview the former Secret Service official and then White House Deputy Chief of Staff, despite his resignation from the government.  resigned after stalling on a second interview. The concerns were whether Secret Service agents refused to drive DDT to the Capitol on January 6 and the accusation that DDT’s supporters were armed at the rally. Documents support these claims that the Secret Service denied in more lies to federal investigators.

In a newly released audio from by journalist Bob Woodward, DDT claims better rapport with world leaders who are “tougher and meaner.” He talked about liking Russian President Vladimir Putin and gets along well with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan although he commented that people say he’s a “horrible guy.”

For almost two hours, DDT rehashed his whining lies Saturday during a rally at the fairgrounds in Robstown (TX), including the “stolen election” and plans to sue the Pulitzer Prize board because of its 2018 awards for reporting the Russian interference. He’s having trouble finding venues for his rants: GOP operatives fear he’s alienating some voters, and the numbers at his rallies have been shrinking.

AG Letitia James finally served DDT for a $250 million lawsuit in New York state after he avoided process servers for three weeks. She finally got a court order permitting her to send them electronically. Oral arguments are set for October 31 to determine if the Trump Organization immediately needs an independent financial monitor that he appoints and oversees. DDT is also trying to shelter his assets by forming a new business, Trump Organization II, and possibly move it out of state. His lawyer Alina Habba has failed in moving the case to Manhattan’s Commercial Division. 

An early employee of Trump Media & Technology Group’s (TMTG) Will Wilkerson stated that DDT, who already had 90 percent of shares in the parent company for Truth Social, pressured executives to give their shares to his wife, Melania Trump, despite their losses in taxes. He fired one of them who refused. Both DDT’s sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, book equity from TMTG employees. CEO Devin Nunes, formerly DDT’s congressional leaker with no technological experience, also caused employees to quit because he berated them and brought in loyalists.

 The editorial board of Rupert Murdoch’s very conservative Wall Street Journal wrote that DDT should be held to account for his attack on democracy. A conservative voter posted her comment about the GOP: “Where is the honor? Where is the integrity?”

October 7, 2022

News for the Week – October 6, 2022

Hurricane Ian has passed, and the House January 6 investigative committee has scheduled a hearing for October 13 at 1:00 pm EST. They picked the time because Fox network refuses to film hearings during evening prime time.

Part of the right-wing Proud Boys’ inner circle, Jeremy Bertino of Belmont (NC), a longtime lieutenant of its chairman Henry “Enrique” Tarrio, has pled guilty to seditious conspiracy. He may be a key witness against his five former colleagues, leaders with ties to influential supporters of former Dictator Donald Trump (DDT). They face a December trial on charges including plotting to forcibly stop the presidential transition culminating in the January 6 insurrection. Five members of the Oath Keepers are already on trial for the same charge, and four members of the far-right group already pled guilty along with two other Proud Boys. Bertino’s guilty plea and illegal possession of firearms as a convicted felon could be punished by 51 to 63 months in prison. A search of his home revealed six firearms including two semiautomatic AR-15 style rifles with scopes.

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE), an occasional moderate, is leaving Congress within the next two months to become president of the University of Florida. The state’s GOP governor, Pete Ricketts, can fill the open seat through the 2024 election. Sasse’s term, his second, lasts through 2026, meaning the replacement would have only a two-year term before a reelection.

As in the past, DDT bashed Sasse, one of seven senators voting to convict DDT in his second impeachment. Conservative author Nick Adams posted that DDT should “buy a house in Nebraska and… [Nebraska] Governor Pete Ricketts should appoint President Donald J. Trump to the US Senate to replace Ben Sasse.” DDT has praised DDT for his Adams’ work, Retaking America: Crushing Political Correctness. DDT wrote on Truth Social that he is “looking forward to partnering with Nebraska’s great Republican Party to get a real senator … not another fake RINO.” A new governor in 2023 could appoint the term-limited Ricketts to replace Sasse.

Some of DDT’s gubernatorial candidates are so bad that GOP leaders support their Democratic opponents:

Kansas: Former Gov. Bill Graves is supporting Democratic incumbent Laura Kelly over state AG Derek Schmidt, who worked in Graves administration. Graves joins 160 other Kansas Republicans endorsing Kelly. Schmidt’s relationship with Republicans is so bad that GOP state senator Dennis Pyle is running against him as an independent. Since Kelly became governor, she balanced the budget, funded public schools, restored infrastructure projects, removed the food tax, and cut $1 billion in taxes while shattering records for new business investments and landed major economic development opportunities.

Michigan: Over 150 state Republicans launched a coalition of business leaders, former state lawmakers, and ex-congressman, and top staff from the GOP administrations of Gov. John Engler and Rick Snyder to support Democratic incumbent Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s reelection bid. The former head of the Michigan GOP is also part of the group

Pennsylvania: GOP leaders, including former Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff and former Allegheny County state Rep. Jim Kelly, announced they support AG Josh Shapiro running for governor against Doug Mastriano. Other GOP officials including two former congressmen, a former state House speaker, and a former lieutenant governor, added their endorsements.

In Maryland, Democratic Wes Moore is ahead of DDT’s gubernatorial choice Dan Cox by 32 percent to replace term-limited Republican Larry Hogan.  Massachusetts Dem candidate Maura Healy has a 99-percent chance to beat DDT’s gubernatorial choice, Geoff Diehl, replacing term-limited GOP Charlie Baker. In this year’s gubernatorial races, 17 lean GOP and 16 Democratic with three states in the middle, according to fivethirtyeight.com.  (Interactive map)

Gas prices going up? Blame Saudi Arabia, not President Joe Biden. Not only did OPEC cut oil supplies. but Saudi Arabia’s state-owned Aramco also bought the biggest oil refinery in the U.S. at Port Arthur (TX) in 2017. Aramco has full ownership of 24 distribution terminals and exclusive rights to sell Shell-branded gasoline and diesel in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, the eastern half of Texas and the majority of Florida.

Elon Musk, the richest man in the world, is consuming the media with a “on-again” position of buying Twitter after vacillating so long that he was headed for a trial on October 17 for trying to break the deal. Over six months ago, he offered to buy the company after he discovered he couldn’t make changes as a shareholder, limited to 15 percent of Twitter stocks. Since then he has badmouthed the company, driving down its shares by almost one-third at one time while offering to finalize the deal with a large drop in the original $44 billion he offered.

When the deal when completely sour, Twitter took Musk to court, but he didn’t want to be deposed and went back to the original agreement of $54.20 a share if the social media company dropped all litigation. Musk asked for additional time to put together financing because most of his assets are tied up with other companies such as Tesla. That company’s shares have dropped by one-third in the past six months, and Musk’s financial backers for Twitter have started to back out. The judge gave Musk until October 28 to finalize the deal. Earlier offering to sell for less, Twitter’s lawyers said that Musk’s “proposal is an invitation to further mischief and delay.”

Like DDT with his Truth Social, Musk has grandiose ideas for his business model—an all-purpose app for messaging, shopping, video gaming, and web browsing, similar to China’s WeChat app. He envies TikTok’s algorithm keeping users hooked and wants a creator-friendly platform focusing more on video. He even has a name, X—the everything app. In addition, Musk wants users to pay for each posted tweet with small amounts of the cryptocurrency DogeCoin and plans to allow DDT back on Twitter to move his QAnon conspiracies and calls for violence into the mainstream venue.

This week, Musk tweeted proposals for “Ukraine-Russia Peace”: give Russia the illegally annexed Crimea, stop Ukraine from joining NATO, ensure water supply to Ukraine, and ask the UN to run another set of referenda in eastern Ukraine allowing Russia to overtake the regions if Russia wins. Along with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelinsky, over 60 percent of the more than one million respondents disagreed, but Musk attributed the vote to the “biggest bot attack I’ve ever seen.” Tesla shares dropped 9 percent, and Musk lost $15 billion from his $252 billion but regained most of it after he said he was going through with the sale.

Buying Twitter means Musk takes on a lot of baggage. The company did win a Dutch case at The Hague in its claim that Twitter did enough by deleting lies spread by three men who claimed a Dutch town was the site of a satanic pedophile ring. Dozens of people “flocked to the municipality of 34,000 people to lay flowers and messages in a graveyard of so-called victims after conspiracy theorists latched on to the claims.”

Yet the U.S. Supreme Court will take up a case this term to determine whether tech platforms should be immune from punishment for harmful content posted by users. It regards a woman killed by the Islamic State militant group in Paris during a 2015 attack. She was one of over 100 people killed by ISIS that year, and the family claims videos fed algorithmically on YouTube inspired the extremists. The intent of the SCOTUS case is deciding whether to retain a legal provision of the 1996 Communications Decency Act, Section 230, that protects internet companies from liability for users’ posts. Democrats assert tech companies use Section 230 to avoid accountability for hate speech.

Bits from the White House:

President Joe Biden has pardoned everyone federally convicted of simple possession of cannabis under federal law, over 6,500 people, and urges governors to follow suit. Although states are moving toward legal use of cannabis for medical and recreational use, the substance remains illegal under federal law. Biden also asked Health and Human Services Secretary and the DOJ AG to “expeditiously” review how marijuana is scheduled under federal law.

VP Kamala Harris was in a one-car accident when her Secret Service driver hit a curb in a tunnel hard enough that the tire had to be replaced and bringing Harris’ motorcade to a standstill. She was transferred to another vehicle and taken to the White House, but the Secret Service reported only “a mechanical failure” in an alert.

The White House announced a “Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights” to hold technology companies accountable for internal biases threatening the civil rights by ensuring AI programs are developed with built-in protections. Examples include discrimination against student loans for those who attend a Historically Black College or University and an algorithm recommending child welfare agencies investigate families of Black children.  

Because of the CHIPS and Science Act, providing $52 billion in public investment in semiconductor manufacture, Micron will spend up to $100 billion during the next 20 years to build up to four plants in upstate New York near Syracuse to manufacture computer chips. The company estimates that the project will create almost 50,000 jobs, with about 9,000 of those in the plants themselves

The GOP complains the loan relief may help Blacks more than Whites because of the racial income gap. Will Republicans then sue to take all benefits away because more Blacks are in poverty than Whites as they reject equal voting rights for Blacks?

Alabama has a gender-based dress code: AL.com reporter Ivana Hrynkiw was told her skirt was too short to view an execution at a prison and open-toe shoes were unsuitable although she had worn the skirt on her job multiple times with no questioning. The prison official approved rain gear—waterproof waders—she borrowed from a photographer and her gym tennis shoes. A judge told a staffer for another judge was told she couldn’t go into the courtroom wearing a pantsuit. And more stories about Alabama sexism!

September 22, 2022

News – September 21, 2022 (DDT Faces More Trouble)

 Aileen Cannon, a judge appointed by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), had ruled against the DOJ’s immediately using seized classified documents from Mar-a-Lago on August 8 for an investigation. In one week, however, DOJ appealed; DDT again won Cannon’s approval; DOJ appealed to the 11th Circuit Court for the materials; and a three-judge panel granted a stay on Cannon’s orders in a ruling siding with the DOJ. It may be the fastest judicial action in history. In the temporary victory for national security, the panel said that Cannon “abused” her discretion in requiring outside review of seized classified documents. In a 29-page opinion, the panel wrote:

“For our part, we cannot discern why [Trump] would have an individual interest in or need for any of the one-hundred documents with classification markings.”

The panel, composed of one judge appointed by President Obama and two appointed by DDT, also unanimously refused to accept the claim from DDT’s legal team that he might have declassified the documents, as did the special master Raymond Dearie, DDT’s choice for special master that Cannon appointed.

“Plaintiff suggests that he may have declassified these documents when he was President. But the record contains no evidence that any of these records were declassified. And before the special master, Plaintiff resisted providing any evidence that he had declassified any of these documents. In any event, at least for these purposes, the declassification argument is a red herring because declassifying an official document would not change its content or render it personal.”

DDT has consistently claimed the documents were not classified because he said they were declassified. On the Fox network, he went farther when he told Sean Hannity by falsely saying that there was no declassification process and he could wordlessly declassify documents:

“You can declassify just by saying “it’s declassified,” even by thinking about it.”

The 11th Circuit Court ruling simplifies Dearie’s work by removing classified documents from his purview; he had said he wanted to avoid reviewing them if possible. The question is whether DDT’s team will appeal the 11th Circuit Court decision.  

Hours before the bad news for DDT from the 11th Circuit, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced she has filed a civil lawsuit against DDT, three of his adult children, and the Trump Organization for $250 million in financial penalties to cover over a decade of fraud when they falsely inflated and deflated their assets to pay lower taxes while getting better insurance coverage. She also asked for a judgment barring DDT and his children in the suit from serving as officer or director of any state-licensed or registered corporation, real estate acquisition in New York, and applications for loans from any financial institution in the state for five years.

The lawsuit comes from a three-year civil investigation with 65 witnesses and reviews of millions of documents. The defendants allegedly conspired to violate state laws, falsifying business records, issuing false financial statements, and committing insurance fraud. Possible federal crimes, including bank fraud have been referred to federal prosecutors and the IRS. DDT supposedly turned the Trump Organization over to his two adult sons in 2017 and serve as executive vice presidents.

Former AG Bill Barr criticized James for trying “to drag the children into this,” referring to adults ages 38 to 44. Yet all three participated in “the fraudulent valuation methods and assumptions.” As usual, DDT claimed that the lawsuit is political by a “failed A.G.” James said:

“There aren’t two sets of laws for people in this nation: former presidents must be held to the same standards as everyday Americans.”

DDT’s fraud related to 23 assets inflated every year between 2011 and 2021, totaling over “200 false and misleading valuations” between 2011 and 2021 is the building at 40 Wall Street owned by the Trump Organization which was valued at $200 million on a tax filing in 2010 that was valued at $524 the following year. In 2015, DDT’s triplex in Trump Tower, 10,996 square feet was three times that size and valued at $327 million. At that time, only one apartment in New York City, housed in a newly built ultra-tall tower, had sold for as much as $100 million. In DDT’s building, the most expensive apartment had sold for $16.5 million. Rental units worth $750,000 were valued at nearly $50 million. DDT claimed his Mar-a-Lago home was worth $739 million, but it was worth one-tenth of that estimate. 

Last month, DDT was deposed for the lawsuit, but he claimed the Fifth Amendment against self-incrimination for all questions except his name. Jurors can consider declaration of the Fifth as negative in civil suits. The Trump Organization also tried to settle last month, but James rejected the offer.

The civil lawsuit could have horrendous results for DDT and his children. New York Times reporter Susan Craig said DDT might have to renegotiate crucial loans because of liquidity problems. If liens are called, loans will be extremely hard to get, and values for them will be much lower than DDT had declared. It would be “financial ruin for the company” as well as be disastrous for a 2024 campaign.  

James’ civil lawsuit is separate from the Manhattan criminal case, but they work together on the inquiry. DA Alvin Bragg criminally charged Trump Organization and its longtime CFO Allen Weisselberg for a scheme to not pay taxes on noncash perks. He will have to testify against the business as part of his guilty plea. Weisselberg also described instructions to inflate assets on financial statements. Earlier in 2019, Michael Cohen, DDT’s former lawyer and fixer, habitually inflated and deflated DDT’s assets for financial gain.

Donors who think they are paying for “election integrity” by giving to DDT’s Save America PAC are not only providing DDT’s legal fees but also paying for Melania Trump’s fashion designer. The PAC also gave $650,000 to the Smithsonian Institution for portraits of DDT and former first lady Melania Trump. Two artists have reportedly been commissioned for the two portraits. No spending on any “election fraud” as the PAC advertised. The DOJ is investigating.

DDT faces another New York lawsuit since the state’s new sexual assault survivor’s law went into effect. E. Jean Carroll had accused DDT of raping her in a Manhattan department store in the 1990s, but the statute of limitations expired. Now adult accusers have a one-year window to bring civil claims over alleged sexual misconduct no matter how long ago it happened. Carroll’s defamation suit can also proceed. Her attorney Roberta Kaplan wrote that the case will be filed on November 24, 2022. While DDT was in the White House, AG Bill Barr’s DOJ had defended DDT in the defamation suit.

Justice Clarence Thomas may also be in trouble if his wife, Ginni Thomas, honestly testifies to the House January 6 investigative committee. She pushed former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to overturn the election as shown by multiple texts between the election and the January 6 insurrection, and worked with DDT’s election attorney John Eastman for the same purpose. In addition, Ginni Thomas emailed 29 Arizona state lawmakers in late 2020, urging them to overturn the state’s popular vote victory for Joe Biden and put together “fake electors” for DDT. She also emailed two GOP Wisconsin lawmakers with the same intent. In March 2021, Thomas attending a meeting of right-wing activists where the audience was told that DDT remains the “legitimate president.” She has a long history of participating in far-right organizations, many of them with cases before the Supreme Court; her husband has always refused to recuse himself and voted in their favor.

 Lawyers representing asylum seekers allegedly “tricked” into flying from San Antonio (TX) to Martha’s Vineyard are seeking a nationwide injunction to block Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis from luring immigrants to travel across state lines. Taking funds from the $12 million federal COVID money assigned by state legislators to transport undocumented immigrants, DeSantis started with 50 asylum seekers, paying Oregon-based Vertol Systems Company over $1.5 million for “relocation of unauthorized aliens.” Florida paid the company $615,000 on September 8, following by $950,000 on September 19. The chartered planes landed in Massachusetts on September 15. DeSantis accused “opportunistic” activists of using illegal immigrants as “political theater.”

Two state legislators asked the DOJ to investigate the asylum seekers’ involuntary relocation from Texas. The letter explained migrants didn’t know where they were being flown and put on the plane under false pretenses.

A federal bankruptcy judge in Houston ordered new officials to supervise Alex Jones’s bankruptcy of his parent company and probably destroyed Jones’ plans to hide his assets from court orders to pay for court rulings in his all four lost defamation trials regarding the Sandy Hook massacre. The DOJ-appointed trustee monitoring the case has expanded duties. Jones is also under scrutiny for a potential role in the January 6 insurrection.

The House January 6 investigating committee has scheduled its first fall hearing for September 28, 2022, at 1:00 pm EST. Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) announced it might not be the last one but would probably be the only one before the November 8 Midterm elections.

July 27, 2022

GOP, DDT Reject Human Rights

After a year, the Senate passed a bill to provide $280 billion for chip manufacturing, design, and scientific research. Seventeen Republicans supported the bill in the 64-33 vote with only one member of the Democratic caucus, Bernie Sanders (I-VT), in opposition because of its weak guidelines. The U.S. has contributed no money to chip manufacturing, compared to the $150 billion that China pays to support the industry. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said she had the votes in her chamber for the bill.   

Most of the funding goes toward advanced, rather than basic, chips, the majority currently coming from Taiwan. The U.S. went from making 37 percent of the world’s chips in 1990 to only 12 percent while the nation contributes “nearly nothing” to their manufacturing  compared to China’s $150 billion investment. Even with the advantages to their states, some senators, such as Tommy Turberville (R-AL) ignored the importance of chips, i.e., a critical component for Javelin missiles, manufactured in Turberville’s state.

After Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) joined Republicans to force the removal of tax increases for the wealthy and big businesses from the bill, he failed to vote after testing positive for COVID.

In Congress, Republicans joined Justice Clarence Thomas to make women into baby incubators by removing female rights to travel, contraception access, and marriage to whom they love. Although 47 GOP House members voted for marriage equality, only eight supported the right to contraception, and 205 Republicans voted against women traveling across state lines for an abortion. This dystopian vision of the U.S. comes directly from Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. The GOP refusal to protect marriage equality and contraception is exactly the same Republicans used to deny protection for Roe v. Wade—their assumption these rights will never be overturned. Yet justices are calling the 2015 marriage equality ruling “undemocratic,” “a problem that only [the court] can fix.”

Sen. Joni Ernst has also blocked a bill legalizing contraceptives; at 52 years old, she probably doesn’t need them. Ernst made her reputation—and may have gotten elected in 2014—with a TV ad about comparing her goals in the Senate to castrating hogs.

Twenty House Republicans also supported human trafficking by voting against a bill to combat the problem. One of them, Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), criticized Democrats for doing nothing about protecting victims. Another naysayer, Matt Gaetz (R-FL), is under investigation for sex trafficking at least one underage girl. Pence’s former aide, Marc Short, said about Gaetz’s recent speech to Turning Point USA, a conservative student group, “I’m actually surprised the Florida law enforcement still allows him to speak to teenage conferences like that.”

In his speech to Turning Point, Gaetz said all anti-abortionists were fat and ugly, that they couldn’t get pregnant anyway. After a 19-year-old Texas girl objected, he used her photo to support his lie and sent her a vile insulting tweet. She used his body-shaming abuse to raise $214,000 thus far for an anti-abortion group.  

DDT’s favorite network—no, it isn’t Fox—may disappear after Verizon Fios stopped carrying One America News, removing 3.5 million subscribers. Earlier this year, OAN lost its biggest revenue when AT&T dumped DirecTV off the service in April, losing another 15 million subscribers. Far to the right of Fox, OAN created a haven for pundits who couldn’t get jobs on other channels, those willing to promote conspiracy theories including the “stolen” election.  OAN has admitted Verizon thinks that the channel is not “a credible news organization.”

Perhaps not noticing that CNN’s new CEO is directing the network to the right-wing dark side, DDT threatens to sue the company for defamation going back to his 2016 presidency campaign. DDT is still claiming his 2020 election was “stolen,” as recently as his speech in Washington, D.C. earlier this week. Clarence Thomas has said the Supreme Court should create an easier environment for people to win lawsuits against the media.   

DDT’s speech seems to be winding up to another presidential campaign with the lies about stolen elections and LGBTQ people front and center, especially trans women. For example, he misgendered swimmer Lia Thomas, accusing “him” of having “arms that are 30 feet long” and “seriously injur[ing]” a competitor “because he swam so fast that he gave her major wind burn as he went by.” Thomas also wasn’t named “female athlete of the year” and didn’t break the record “by 38 seconds.” DDT also talked about a transgender weightlifter who doesn’t seem to exist. In his speech, DDT called LGBTQ people “sickos.”

Fifty-five trans candidates running in 2022 have been joined by 20 gender nonconforming candidates, 18 nonbinary candidates, and four Two-Spirit candidates. Some of them are in red states such as Montana and Oklahoma. A total of 1,068 LGBTQ candidates, an increase of 73 percent since 2020, is running this year when legislatures introduced 162 anti-LGBTQ bills before July 1. Congress has 11 elected LGBTQ members.

Witnesses in the House January 6 probe are revealing more of his lies. The Pentagon now supports the many claims that he never called on the National Guard to protect the U.S. Capitol. DDT’s former acting Secretary of Defense Chris Miller said DDT never requested the 10,000 troops to secure the Capitol before January 6, a claim made by both DDT and his former chief of staff Mark Meadows. DDT’s former official Mick Mulvaney will also testify before the committee; he says he believe the testimony of witnesses Cassidy Hutchinson and other top former DDT officials,

After eight hearings from the House January 6 investigative committee showing DDT’s involvement in the failed coup at the U.S. Capitol, the DOJ is taking steps to investigate him. Concerns include DDT’s attempt to force former VP Mike President to overturn Joe Biden’s presidential election and DDT’s ties to establishing fake alternate electors in battleground states he lost. In five of seven states, these electors appear to be driven by DDT’s lawyers with DDT also involved. The DOJ interviewed witnesses, seized phone records of his top allies, and searched the home of former Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark who enabled DDT in his election-fraud theories. AG Merrick Garland has repeatedly said that no one is above the law, and the Fulton County (GA) criminal investigation into DDT’s efforts to overturn the election is also expanding.

Furious about the investigation, DDT used his Truth Social to repeat his lies and conspiracy theories—“massive and irrefutable” evidence about the “rigged and stolen” election, his “perfect” phone call to Georgia begging for more votes to make him a winner, and more whining about his impeachments and Russia scams. The extensive quotes, complete with excessive capital letters, are here.

The DOJ has a new warrant to search John Eastman’s phone in the continued investigation regarding a criminal conspiracy between DDT and his lawyer to overturn the election, partly through using fake electors. Eastman’s employer, conservative Claremont Institute, is backing off from its staunch DDT support after standing by Eastman before it learned more about his actions. Now they’re lamenting that he decided to jettison the Constitution for DDT’s benefit. The question now is how the think tank can separate itself from Eastman.

The House committee evidence supports charges of obstruction of an official proceeding with a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and used against hundreds of insurrectionists along with possibly seditious conspiracy, like charges brought against Proud Boys and Oath Keepers. In a new poll, 79 percent of people think DDT’s actions on January 6 were illegal or unethical with only 21 percent believing he did nothing wrong. Even 55 percent of Republicans agree with either illegal or unethical behavior, the same percentage of Republicans who don’t want DDT as the 2024 candidate. The 69 percent of people who believe the January 6 attack to be a crisis or major problem for American democracy is up from 65 percent earlier this year.

Leaked audio from Steve Bannon, added to his saying that DDT would declare victory on election night even if he lost, are his conspiracy with exiled Chinese mogul Guo Wengui and his associates to spread the lies that Hunter Biden’s computer, Joe Biden’s son, contained proof about salacious crimes. Guo controls pro-DDT media sites spreading far-right disinformation. Before the election, Guo’s associates disseminated videos and photos of Hunter Biden in sexual encounters and drug use.

After paying almost $2 million for DDT’s legal bills, the RNC chair Ronna McDaniel said the money stops if he becomes a 2024 candidate using the weak excuse of its “neutrality policy.” Earlier, DDT backed down when McDaniel made the same threat after DDT said he was creating his own political party. DDT’s leadership PAC, Save America, and his presidential committee-turned-PAC Make America Great Again PAC are paying legal bills for issues related to January 6, raising concerns about his witness tampering.

A Harvard study of almost 500 documents shows primary motivation for 417 Capitol rioters charged for insurrection: support for DDT, 20.6 percent; DDT’s lie about a stolen election, 20.6 percent; “peacefully protest,” 7 percent; and “general interest in violence,” 6.2 percent.  

July 22, 2022

DDT’s Response to Hearing, Congressional Action

Deposed Donald Trump (DDT) couldn’t stay quiet about the eighth hearing on July 21 by the House January 6 investigative committee:

  • He called Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), vice-chair of the House January 6 investigative committee, “a sanctimonious loser.”
  • He said he “didn’t know” the witness Sarah Matthews, who worked for his 2020 presidential campaign before becoming his White House deputy press secretary.
  • About his failure to have “10,000 to 20,000 troops to stand guard at the Capitol Building,” DDT wrote, “It’s Nancy Pelosi’s fault, she turned down the troops!”
  • He claimed he didn’t tell House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) that the mob is “just more upset about the election than you are.”
  • He added that “Crooked Hillary Clinton” and Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams “contested their elections” for a “far longer time.” (In 2016 Clinton conceded her defeat to DDT within 24 hours, and Abrams did not challenge the election as DDT did. Neither led an angry mob to stop their opponents from taking power.)
  • He repeated the lie about “an election Rigged and Stolen from me, and our Country” and added “the USA is going to Hell. Am I supposed to be happy?”
  • He called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) a “disloyal sleaze bag.” Immediately after the insurrection, McConnell told then-acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller, “We’re not going to let these people keep us from finishing our business. So we need you to get the building cleared, give us the OK so we can go back in session and finish up the people’s business as soon as possible.” The next day he blamed the attack on DDT. “Is this the same Mitch McConnell who was losing big in Kentucky, and came to the White House to BEG me for an Endorsement and help?” DDT wrote. “Without me he would have lost in a landslide.”

Last week, former DDT adviser Steve Bannon went to trial for defying a subpoena from the House committee and was convicted within five days. Prosecutors had two witnesses, and Bannon had none, not even himself. As a witness, he would have to testify under oath. Bannon claimed he had executive privilege although he hasn’t worked in the White House since 2017. The conviction for two counts of contempt each brings 30 days to one year in prison with sentencing on October 21. Bannon will likely appeal.

Almost two years ago, DDT pardoned Bannon for his taking $1 million in an alleged wall-building scam. The case never went to trial. He continually declares that Joe Biden is an illegitimate president because DDT won the election. Before the insurrection, he told DDT, “[I]t’s time to kill the Biden presidency in the crib.” On his January 5 podcast he said:

“All hell is going to break loose tomorrow. Just understand this: All hell is going to break loose tomorrow…. [A]ll I can say is: Strap in. You have made this happen, and tomorrow it’s game day.”

Last year, Bannon said he would make his case “the misdemeanor from hell for Merrick Garland, Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden.” He implied he would try to force the January 6 committee to reveal internal communications and interviews conducted in secret. Last month, Bannon said that AG Merrick Garland and “everybody in the DOJ” would be impeached if DDT is indicted for anything related to overturning the election. Last week, he added, “We’re going medieval on these people. We’re going to savage our enemies.” Bannon is a “studio gangster,” a performer who can’t back up their songs or raps. 

Bannon thought he could win his case with fake excuses: deadlines on official documents weren’t for real; official signatures could have been forged by anyone; the subpoenas were not legitimate. Bannon even accused the committee chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) of testing positive for COVID to avoid testifying at the trial. The judge told the jury to ignore the signature issue.

As members of the U.S. Supreme Court consider erasing marriage equality, Andorra has became the 33rd country in the world to legalize same-gender civil marriage. Lawmakers in the Pyrennes country of 77,000 unanimously voted for this right as well as allowing transgender people to update their names and gender markers on legal documents without proof of medical care, something the U.S. moves toward eliminating. The House has passed the Respect for Marriage Act (RMA) with all Democrats and 22 percent of Republican lawmakers, but the bill needs 20 percent of GOP Senators to join all Democrats for passage. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) already called the bill a “waste of time,” referring to hundreds of thousands of marriages—including mine.

In 1996, the Defense of Marriage Act, permitting states to refuse marriage equality and defining marriage as only heterosexual, passed by 342-67 including 118 House Democrats. Exactly 26 years later, support for marriage equality in the U.S. is 71 percent, compared to 27 percent in 1996. Texas wants to move back almost three decades. The man who created the draconian vigilante anti-abortion law is involved in six state lawsuits to chip away at LGBTQ rights, including marriage, most of them regarding religious rights to trump performance of marriage, preventative medical care (specifically PrEP for HIV) from private insurers, employment, and books in libraries.    

Susan Collins (ME) and Rob Portman (OH), who announced in 2013 his son is gay, announced the bill in the Senate. Ron Johnson (WI), usually the biggest outlier, said he wouldn’t oppose the bill. (He’s facing a very difficult re-election this year.) Sen. Thom Tillis (NC) said he was voting for the RMA, and Lisa Murkowski (AK) said she’s always supported same-gender marriage. Responses from the 50 GOP senators about their positions. Major excuses for lack of support are not reading the bill or no need, despite judicial threats against it. The bill would also codify the right to interracial marriage, not threatened by conservative Justice Clarence Thomas after his biracial marriage. 

In an odd shift from marriage equality, only eight Republicans voted for federal contraceptive protection when the Right to Contraception Act (RCA) passed by 228-195. The Supremes have also threatened to overturn the 1965 Griswold v. Connecticut requiring married people to be permitted birth control. One excuse was that the bill would protect contraception not approved by the FDA—and of course, misinformation that the bill isn’t necessary. Two GOP Iowa representatives have put forward a bill to permit FDA-approved contraceptives to have over-the-counter status, but both voted against the RCA.

The House passed two access to abortion bills which are unlikely to survive the Senate, but the Senate is also playing offense with the Electoral College Count Act (ECCA), a bipartisan bill trying to prevent future coups like the one DDT attempted. Its provisions aim to prevent action by another losing candidate to move into the White House:

  • A state must appoint electors using the state’s laws before Election Day. State’s laws requiring electors based on the popular vote could not change the process. DDT tried to force legislators to appoint electors in opposition to the popular vote, pushed Republican congressional members to object to legal electors, and pressured his vice president to block the count, giving him time to take more action in the states.
  • State legislatures would no longer declare a “failed election” and overturn the state’s popular vote.
  • The governor must certify the correct electors by a hard deadline before Congress counts them, keeping a governor from certifying electors for a losing candidate. An aggrieved candidate could trigger expedited judicial review by a federal three-judge panel, subject to an expedited Supreme Court appeal. The ECCA would prevent state legislators and governors from breaking their laws.
  • The vice president’s role in counting the votes is only ceremonial.
  • One-fifth of each chamber would be required to force a vote to invalidate electors. The current law requires one member from each congressional chamber to start debate.

Another bill increases criminal punishments for threats, harassment, and violence against election workers.

DDT is still working to overturn the 2020 presidential election results. On July 19, he called Wisconsin GOP Assembly Speaker Robin Vos with a new scam after the state Supreme Court ruled that most absentee ballot drop boxes in the state are illegal for future elections. DDT wants to make it retroactive. Vos told DDT his idea is unconstitutional but said DDT “has a different opinion.”A former state Supreme Court justice, who resigned after a year, has been running a ballot audit for over a year and also wants the legislature to decertify the 2020 election although the justice’s own attorney said doing so is impossible. 

Ten months ago, DDT insisted Arizona must decertify the 2020 results, followed by his insistence two months later the Georgia do the same. He claims he will undo his defeat and return to the White House. Earlier in July, Christina Bobb, a former OAN host now working for the former president, wanted to decertify 2020 votes after the 2022 midterm elections. Throughout the nation DDT’s allies, including architect of overturning the election John Eastman, are pushing states to pass resolutions rescinding Electoral College votes for Joe Biden and sue to prove evidence-free claims of large-scale voter fraud in their work to reinstate DDT.

Congress has two more weeks to work on bills until members leave for their one-month summer adjournment. Meanwhile, five justices on the Supreme Court handed ICE authority over to a DDT-appointed federal judge in Texas on how to authorize their time for the next year despite a federal statute giving this power to the HHS Secretary. SCOTUS may make its order permanent next year, negating enforcement for the past 2+ decades. Amy Coney Barrett broke with the six Supremes.

July 13, 2022

News – Week of July 13, 2022

Updates: When Twitter gave Elon Musk 53 terabytes of raw user data, the company was concerned that he would use it for building his own social media platform. According to Twitter, Musk had only three plans: “sit on its board, buy it, or build a competitor.” If Musk tries to buy Twitter at a reduced price, his lawsuit could become the “world’s most expensive case of ‘if you break it, you pay for it.’” Delaware have forced other prospective buyers, such as Louis Vuitton maker LVHM in 2020, to comply with signed merger agreements.  

The feud between Musk and Deposed Donald Trump (DDT) continues after Musk tweeted, “It’s time for Trump to hang up his hat & sail into the sunset” after DDT called him “another bullsh–t artist.” DDT’s lengthy response slammed electric, “driverless cars, … rocketships to nowhere,” and more. Tesla laid off 229 employees in its Autopilot team and closed its San Mateo office, transferring other workers to another facility. Musk said he will be firing ten percent of Tesla’s workforce; his net worth has fallen $65 billion in the past three months, largely because of the 24-percent drop in Tesla stock value. In November 2021, Musk was worth $340 billion, but his assets fell 42 percent by May 2022 to $197.1 billion.

Notes about the January 6 debacle:

DDT’s former chief of staff Mark Meadows, who may end up being the patsy for all the illegal activities setting up the insurrection, White House Communications Director Alyssa Farah Griffin that she shouldn’t resign after DDT lost the election because he wasn’t leaving the Oval Office.  

DDT’s Islamophobic supporter Brigette Gabriel wanted all January 6 hearings canceled “out of respect” for DDT while he mourns the death of former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. One respondent pointed out that DDT barely knew Abe who was in the same room as DDT only a few times.

Alex Holder, the British director of a documentary film Unprecedented with footage from DDT, his family, and his allies, is under armed protective guard because of threats from DDT’s supporters.

More video footage of the insurrection planning comes from two conservative filmmakers, Jason Rink and Paul Escandon, who filmed footage of DDT’s friend Roger Stone and his protégé organizer of “Stop the Steal” Ali Alexander leading up to the attack on the U.S. Capitol. The documentary is to be called The Steal. Also starring in the film are insurrectionists Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and DDT’s former national security adviser Mike Flynn.  Stone also gave permission for a Danish documentary film crew to record his activities in the Willard Hotel, where DDT’s allies planned the election overturn. The content of the film footage is not known.  

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is really afraid of testifying to a Fulton County (GA) grand jury about his trying to interfere in its state 2020 presidential election: asking a federal court to quash a grand jury subpoena for his testimony in the Fulton County district attorney’s investigation into former President Trump’s efforts to undermine Georgia’s election results.

For the first time in seven years, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will have a director after the Senate confirmed Steve Dettelbach, President Joe Biden’s second nomination after he withdrew David Chipman. The vote was 48-46 with GOP Sens. Susan Collins (ME) and Rob Portman (OH) joining Democrats. The NRA called Dettelbach “anti-gun.”

After the six Supremes removed the right to abortion for all women in the U.S., Biden signed an executive order in an attempt to mitigate the removal of reproductive rights. It tries to strengthen existing provisions for medication abortion, emergency care, contraception access, resources, and information. Doctors and hospitals in all states accepting federal funding must provide abortions to women whose lives are at risk through the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA). The federal mandate preempts state law that doesn’t permit a woman’s life to be saved.

The story about a raped 10-year-old Ohio girl forced to travel to Indiana for an abortion resulted in great skepticism from conservatives, including Ohio’s Republican AG Dave Yost, who claimed it was fake reporting to push for legalized abortion. The 27-year-old rape suspect was arrested after he confessed to raping the child at least twice at the same time the Wall Street Journal published an editorial doubting the victim’s truthfulness. Ohio GOP Gov. Mike DeWine agreed with Yost that the rape is likely a “fabrication.” Evidencing approval of the arrest, DeWine and Yost did not issue any apologies for their attacks on the girls and her doctor. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) deleted his tweet about the reporting about the rape that ended, “Another lie. Anyone surprised?” The surprise is that anyone reports a rape.

With abortion gone in some states and contraception on the chopping block, some men are getting prepared. Anecdotally, the interest in vasectomies has largely grown since the announcement from the six Supremes in late June. A Kansas City (MO) doctor said his vasectomy consults skyrocketed 900 percent since then, and a Laredo (TX) described a similar uptick. Same for urologists in Idaho and Tampa Bay. According to a research company, searches for “where can I get a vasectomy?” spiked 850 percent. While 18 percent of women use tubal ligation, an invasive surgical procedure, for birth control, only six percent of men in the U.S. have vasectomies.

Suggestions that the pro-forced-birth legislators should help women and children in the future chaos of more births and parental hardship following the six Supremes’ mandate blocking abortions have fallen on deaf ears. Democrats have supported assistance through direct cash or family leave, but Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said that “supporting families and family formation [is] separate and apart from the abortion questions.” No one on the right is disagreeing with them, and many Republicans claim their opposition to more federal assistance means they don’t support children. The U.S. already does enough to support families, according to the GOP.

Only Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) believes in a monthly cash allowance for families. Two other GOP senators, Steve Daines (MT) and Richard Burr (NC), propose “child” tax credit for the fetus until it becomes a baby but say it won’t pass anyway. A few Republicans, like Sen. Marco Rubio (FL) support paid parental leave by taking the money out of later Social Security benefits. GOP ideas come from their philosophy that reducing material hardship removes any desire to have a job.

Republicans are also silent about the new jobs report for June—an additional 372,000. The private sector has recovered all the jobs that DDT lost during the pandemic plus more. During the second quarter of 2022, Biden created more jobs during that period of time in almost 40 years.  For the first half of 2022, 2.63 jobs have been added, more than any full year under DDT even before the pandemic. Despite an additional 9.37 jobs since Biden’s inauguration, the GOP blames Democrats for poor job growth but gives them no credit for job growth.

The media focuses on the annualized inflation being higher than a year ago, but it actually shrank a bit from June 2022 to the previous June. Core inflation in June, excluding gasoline and food, is expected to be the third month of slowing. Retail prices will likely drop because retailers miscalculated some inventories, and container costs of shipping and airlines are falling. The Federal Reserve also plans to peak out prime rate with one more 0.75 percent increase on top of June’s 0.75 percent.  

After whining about inflation, Fox hosts are now upset because gas prices are declining too fast. According to Martha MacCallum, lower gas prices are bad for “mom-and-pop” gas station owners.

The DOJ is suing Arizona to block its law, set to take effect in January, requiring proof of citizenship for voter registration. In 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected Arizona’s proof of citizenship law, and this new law violates the National Voter Registration Act, according to DOJ. State law already requires Arizona voters in state elections to provide proof of citizenship, but this law extends the requirement to federal election. Registering to vote in federal elections requires attesting under penalty of perjury but doesn’t require proof until this new law. County records or election officials who don’t attempt to verify citizenship status and registers voters without documentation can be charged with a felony. Federal statutes do not require this documentation. Arizona already requires attestation of citizenship on the ballot; lying is a crime.

California now has a law modeled after Texas’ law allowing private citizens to sue people enabling abortions. The Supreme Court refused to block the law so California now has a law allowing private citizens to sue gun manufacturers and distributors whose produces cause them harm. When signing the bill, Gov. Gavin Newsom said “that nearly every industry is held to account when their products cause harm or injury, except one: the gun industry.”

Rules require “reasonable controls” to keep guns from people most likely to cause harm such as systems to prevent gun sales to straw purchasers, gun traffickers, everyone legally prohibited from owning firearms, and those whom the business has a reasonable concern might unlawfully harm themselves or others. A 2005 federal law bans state and federal lawsuits against gun manufacturers and dealers, but a clause in that law allows lawsuits if a firearms business “knowingly violated a State or Federal statute applicable to the sale or marketing of the product” and harm was directly caused because of it.

June 28, 2022

January 6, 2021 Hearing – June 28, 2022

The sixth hearing by the House January 6 investigative committee provided only one witness in person, Cassidy Hutchinson. As top deputy to the chief of staff Mark Meadows for Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) during the insurrection and its leadup, she was in a position to know the palace intrigues: she kept the calendar, attended many meetings, and was on a first-name basis with a majority of the primary players. Before Hutchinson came to the White House, she interned for Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), the current GOP whip, and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). Republicans argue that she is nothing but a “low-level staffer,” but Alyssa Farah, former White House communications director, explained her position in the White House as seeing everything and “always on Air Force One.” Her office is next to that of Meadows and only yards from the Oval Office.

Hutchinson knew that DDT was aware of impending violence days before January 6, approved of it, and ordered his armed supporters to head to the Capitol after the rally. He planned to meet them there despite protests from his aides and Secret Service detail. Denied this opportunity, he tried to get his own way through physical means and protect rioters who chanted “hang Mike Pence” because Pence didn’t follow DDT’s orders to overturn the election.

Today’s testimony moved into the uncharted territory of DDT’s temper and the way he exhibited and approved violence. It threw out the DDT’s claim that the insurrection was “a simple protest that got out of hand.” A chronology of events in Hutchinson’s testimony:

January 2, 2021: DDT’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani mentioned to that “we are going to the Capitol, it’s going to be great, the president is going to be there.” When she asked Meadows what Giuliani meant, her boss warned that “things might get real, real bad on January 6.” Intelligence agencies warned in the next few days that the rally could turn violent, but DDT and Meadows did nothing. Meadows supported DDT’s plan to lead his marchers to the Capitol.  According to Hutchinson, Cipollone said that DDT’s going to the Capitol on January 6 would cause legal problems in crimes such as “obstructing justice” and “defrauding elector count.”

Although Hutchinson didn’t know what was said, Meadows talked with Roger Stone and Michael Flynn on the night of January 5 at DDT’s urging. She said she advised Meadows to go to the Willard Hotel “War Room” that evening. He didn’t go, but “dialed in.” On the morning of January 6, Cipollone told Hutchinson that if DDT marched on the Capitol with his supporters “we’re going to get charged with every crime imaginable if we make that movement happen.”

January 6, 2021—the rally: Disturbed by empty spaces at his rally at the Ellipse, DDT told aides to let them in. Former deputy chief of staff Tony Ornato told DDT that the crowd was armed, but DDT said that he didn’t “f***ing care that they have weapons. They’re not here to hurt me. Take the f***ing mags away,” meaning magnetometers scanning for weapons. Audio of law enforcement before the January 6 rally relayed reports of attendees carrying AR-15 rifles and Glock pistols as well as brass knuckles, knives, tasers, and other weapons confiscated when the crowd passed through the magnetometers. Knowing about the weapons, DDT said, “We’re going to walk down to the Capitol.”

January 6, 2021—after the rally: Furious by being told he couldn’t go to the Capitol to join the rioters, DDT “reached up towards the front of the vehicle to grab at the steering wheel” and then used his free hand to lunge towards “the clavicles” of his Secret Service agent. DDT was not in a Suburban instead of the large limo called “The Beast.” DDT said, “I’m the f***ing president! Take me up to the Capitol now!” Yet the driver took him to the White House.

January 6, 2021—at the White House: Still in a fury, DDT hurled his lunch at the wall, leaving his valet to clean up the streaming ketchup. Meadows and Cipollone met with him about the chants to hang Pence, but DDT refused to do anything to stop the rioters. Hutchinson said both Meadows and DDT seemed indifferent to the threats. Cipollone told Meadows they needed to stop it, but Meadows answered, “You heard him, Pat. He thinks Mike deserves it. He doesn’t think they’re doing anything wrong.” Her statements confirm other testimony that DDT made this comment as well as testimony that DDT believed that insurrectionists assaulting police officers and ransacking the Capital were doing nothing wrong.

Hutchinson paints a picture of DDT as approving the intentional, not accidental, violence of the day because he wanted the violent mob to attack the Capitol for his benefit, use the violence to disrupt the electoral votes certification, and illegally keep him in the Oval Office—a coup. This evidence could be the basis for criminal charges such as seditious conspiracy against DDT. Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Meadows that Cabinet secretaries were considering invoking the 25 Amendment to remove DDT from the Oval Office.

In her testimony, Hutchinson also said that Meadows burned papers after a meeting with Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), advocating for DDT to stay in power by replacing DOJ leadership. Destroying public records is illegal. Meadows also tried to get a presidential pardon after the insurrection, the highest-ranking official seeking this privilege. Giuliani had also indicated an interest in a pardon. Meadows encouraged language about pardons for the rioters in a January 7 speech, but White House lawyers blocked the language.

DDT’s aides called Hutchinson’s testimony a “bombshell” with potentially huge repercussions for Trump. One adviser said, “For the first time since the hearings started, no one is dismissing this.

Even Fox’s chief political correspondent Bret Baier called Hutchinson’s testimony “stunning and compelling” especially because she was in a “proximity of power” to know what was happening. “Nervous” and “blindsided” by the news of Hutchinson’s cooperation, DDT engaged in what his former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen described as “distance, disparage, and destroy.” DDT began his negative statements with his usual separation from any person, stating, “I hardly know who this person Cassidy Hutchinson is” and then accused her of being angry because he wouldn’t allow her to join his staff at Mar-a-Lago. About DDT’s rebuttal to the testimony, Baier pointed out that Hutchinson was “under oath” and DDT was “on Truth Social.”

Baier also praised the Republicans who testified before the committee and called them “patriots.”  Fox anchor Martha MacCallum described hearings’ testimonies laying out a “huge, stunning and clear moment” showing a lack of evidence to support Trump’s claims of an unfair election in 2020. Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade said that DDT’s lawyers never found evidence of voter fraud and called DDT “unhinged.”  

In addition to other charges, participants in the coup may face charges of witness tampering. At the sixth hearing, committee members expressed their concern that DDT’s allies are trying to intimidate witnesses who cooperate with the special House panel. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), the committee’s vice-chair said the committee asks all witness if they have been contacted by any former DDT administration or campaign officials “who attempted to influence or impact their testimony.” Thus far, the committee has found at least two examples of potential witness intimidation.

A January 6 witness described receiving a phone call:  

 “What they said to me is as long as I continue to be a team player, they know that I’m on the team, I’m doing the right thing, I’m protecting who I need to protect, you know, I’ll continue to stay in good graces in Trump World.”

“And they have reminded me a couple of times that Trump does read transcripts and just to keep that in mind as I proceeded through my depositions and interviews with the committee.”

A second witness described receiving another phone call:

“[Someone] let me know you have your deposition tomorrow. He wants me to let you know that he’s thinking about you. He knows you’re loyal and you’re going to do the right thing when you go in for your deposition.”

Mick Mulvaney, former DDT top official, tweeted that reports of witness tampering could be a serious problem for DDT:

“The Press is going to focus on some sensational revelations from today:  guns, grabbing a secret service agent, etc. But the real bomb that got dropped was the implied charge of witness tampering. If there is hard evidence, that is a serious problem for the former President.”

In February, committee member Rep. Pete Aguilar (R-CA) accused DDT of trying to sway testimony by offering pardons if he’s re-elected as president. He consistently repeats this claim at his rallies related to January 6.

The committee, with the House approval, has already made criminal recommendations for people refusing to comply with subpoenas. Thus far at least 30 people have failed to appear after receiving the committee’s subpoenas, an illegal action. During its yearlong work, the committee interviewed over 1,000 witness and explored over 140,000 documents while following up on 471 tips.

June 17, 2022

Ginni Thomas Corrupts the Supreme Court, the U.S.

The Supreme Court may be at its lowest ebb during modern times with a massive leak of the anti-abortion draft, a California man at Brett Kavanaugh’s house armed with a gun and knife, and protests outside other justices’ homes. Justice Clarence Thomas has decried the situation, blaming the “left,” but his own conflicts of interest, especially those exascerbated by his wife, Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, may be the biggest problem of the current court. A poll shows that 61 percent of the respondents want Congress to open an investigation into Clarence Thomas’ refusal to recuse himself, following Ginni Thomas’ increasing activism to overturn the 2020 presidential election

Events about Thomas, a major figure orchestrating insurrection events, have been increasingly revealed within the past several weeks. Before the third House January 6 investigative hearing, the one focusing on Mike Pence’s refusal to overturn the 2020 presidential election despite the false theory from John Eastman that it was his prerogative, more coup information about Eastman came out in connection to Ginni Thomas:

  • Eastman’s private December 24, 2020 email stated he knew about an internal “heated fight” at the Supreme Court about hearing arguments on DDT’s overturn attempts.
  • Eastman directly corresponded with Ginni Thomas while they coordinated to keep DDT in the White House after he lost the 2020 election.
  • The House investigative committee, according to its chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS), will ask Ginni Thomas to testify before of this information.

Eastman had clerked for Clarence Thomas in 1996 and 1997, and Thomas has strong ties with the Claremont Institute, where Eastman works, having spoken there and regularly quoting the conservative founder. In an 8-1 decision against blocking the release of White House records connected to the January 6 insurrection, Thomas was the one vote to support DDT by opposing the request.

Ginni’s Timeline:   

During 2022, more and more information has come out about Ginni Thomas’ pressure on everyone to overturn the election:

January 2022: Jane Mayer’s seminal essay in The New Yorker established Thomas’ background and her work to politically swing Supreme Court decisions. Thomas’ connection with the Oath Keepers who helped organize the violence at the January 6, 2021 insurrection includes speaking at one of their events.

February 2022: A lengthy piece from the New York Times describes how Thomas worked to bring together the organizing factions behind the January 6 rally and Charles Pierce’s response to Jane Mayer’s essay. Thomas led the C.N.P. Action coalition of leaders from such groups as the Federalist Society, the National Rifle Association and the Family Research Council in “action steps” to pressure state officials in Georgia, Arizona, and Pennsylvania to overturn the people’s votes. Clarence Thomas’ former clerks also tried to overturn the election.

March 2022:  Twenty-nine newly-revealed texts between Thomas and former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows before the insurrection communicate her conspiracy theories and urge him and others in DDT’s inner circle to overturn the election.  

May 2022: Communication between Thomas and two Arizona GOP state legislators showed her argument to ignore the voters’ decision to choose Biden for president and appoint their own “clean slate” of electors for DDT.

June 2022: It was discovered that Thomas actually lobbied 27 more Arizona legislators for a total of 29 to set aside the 2020 popular vote and “choose” presidential electors for DDT. That total is more than half the state GOP lawmakers in Arizona. She told them that the responsibility to choose electors was “yours and yours alone” and wrote in her email to them:  

“The nation’s eyes are on you now. Please consider what will happen to the nation we all love if you do not stand up and lead.”

A month later she sent other similar emails to 23 of the Arizona GOP legislators. Her earlier influence with DDT included regular meetings with him and gave him lists of people to hire and fire. Thomas’ email correspondence with Eastman details the plan for overturning the 2020 election, more extensive efforts than previously known. She had also sent a text on election night to Meadows stating, “Do not concede. It takes time for the army who is gathering for his back [sic].”

On January 6, 2021, Thomas also attended the “Stop the Steal” rally and was seen at the Willard Hotel, location of the “command center” where Rudy Giuliani led the group to overthrow the election. She is a friend of the chief of staff for Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), who sued to force Pence to keep DDT in the White House. The chief of staff also belongs to the private “Thomas Clerk World” email listserv, past and present Clarence Thomas law clerks who support QAnon and who Thomas persuaded to join her overturning scheme. Next year, the House will be safe from Gohmert: he gave up his seat to fail a run for Texas attorney general. He now pushes for “justice” for those attacking the U.S. Capitol on January and accuses of the government in lying about these cases.

Ginni Thomas has long been intimately involved with several conservative groups with connections to the Supreme Court. In 2000, Thomas, then a staffer at the conservative Heritage Foundation, screened resumes for Bush administration employees while the court had yet to rule on the legality of the Florida recount. Her husband, Clarence, was one of the five justices who put a stop to the recount in Florida, later shown to have a majority for Democratic candidate Al Gore who would have been president with the electoral votes from Florida.

More recently, Ginni Thomas was on the advisory board of the conservative group Turning Point USA, which transported busloads of insurrectionists to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6. Clarence Thomas was the only dissenter to the case which required DDT to allow the House investigative committee to receive White House documents. It was one of ten election-related cases that Thomas helped decide. In addition, Ginni Thomas openly complained that the U.S. is in danger of falling into the hands of “transsexual fascists.”

Stephen Gillers, an NYU law professor and a judicial ethicist, said:

“I think Ginni Thomas is behaving horribly, and she’s hurt the Supreme Court and the administration of justice. It’s reprehensible. If you could take a secret poll of the other eight justices, I have no doubt that they are appalled by Virginia Thomas’ behavior. But what can they do?”

Clarence Thomas has allied himself with conservatives in his speeches and rejects the “left” in his “we” and “they” terminology. In his talks, he also defends Senate Republicans for refusing President Obama his right to appoint Merrick Garland ten months before the end of his term with no excuse for a GOP Senate who put Amy Coney Barrett on the high court in under two weeks before DDT lost his election.  

Earlier, Republicans tried to push the narrative that she had no influence over her husband, Clarence Thomas, who is the longest-sitting justice on the U.S. Supreme Court—and one of the most controversial for his possible unethical behavior in that position. In March, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) denied that Ginni would have any influence over her husband’s decisions and condemned Democrats for their demands that Clarence Thomas recuse himself from cases in which she is involved. A question might be if he sticks to his insistence that people are making “spurious accusations about fake ethical problems or partiality.”

After the latest revelation about Ginni Thomas, that she was working with a major figure in DDT’s attempt to overturn the election, Democrats are calling for her husband to resign from the Supreme Court, at the very least recuse himself from election-related cases. Approval of the high court is 36 percent, the lowest it’s been since the Supreme Court put George W. Bush into the White House in a 2000 decision and lower than President Joe Biden’s 39 percent approval rating at this time.  

A MoveOn.org petition to impeach Clarence Thomas has reached almost 238,000 signatures with impetus since the Wednesday hearing revealed emails between Ginni Thomas and John Eastman.

The argument has always been that the president is not above the law. That might be true, but Supreme Court justices, with no ethics guidelines and no oversight, will probably never be brought to justice.

June 13, 2022

January 6, 2021 Hearing – June 13, 2022

The second public hearing for the House investigative committee into the insurrection of January 6, 2021, began at 10:00 am (7:00 am for the West Coast) today. The opening hearing last Thursday gave an overview of the disaster on the day. The one today laid the foundation for the violence, providing evidence from GOP leaders and administrative officials along with Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) himself that he knew he had lost. He just felt it was to his personal benefit to lie about it. Two more hearings will be this week, Wednesday at 10:00 ET and Thursday.

Originally, six hearings were scheduled, but there may be eight with dates and time subject to change. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) summarized the subjects of the hearings:

June 13: DDT “massive effort to spread false and fraudulent information” despite his knowing he had lost the election.

June 15: DDT’s alleged plot to influence and possibly replace the U.S. Attorney General in order to further false election claims. Scheduled for 10:00 am, testimony by Jeffrey Rosen, then acting attorney general; his deputy Richard Donoghue; and Justice Department official Steve Engel.

June 16: DDT’s efforts to pressure VP Mike Pence to stop the electoral count. Scheduled on CBS at 8:00 pm, Greg Jacob, the former chief counsel to the vice president will reportedly testify.

June 21: DDT’s alleged efforts to unduly influence state legislators and election officials. Brad Raffensperger, secretary of state of Georgia and Gabriel Sterling, one his top aides, have been subpoenaed to testify.

Hearings 6 & 7:  How DDT “summoned a violent mob and directed them, illegally, to march on the U.S. Capitol” and how he failed to act to stop those same people as they invaded the Capitol building. No date is yet set for these proceedings. Invited to testify is lawyer and former judge J. Michael Luttig, who helped convince Pence that the VP could not by himself overturn state results.

CNN’s broadcasting on June 15, 21 and 22 CNN is from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET and June 16 and 23 from 12 to 4 p.m. ET. Times are subject to change.

Newsmax plans live coverage with possible analysts former U.S. AG General Matthew Whitaker, Harvard law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz, DDT’s Alina Habba, and attorney Ameer Benno.

Some takeaways from the June 13, 2022 hearing from former GOP leaders and DDT’s colleagues:

A visibly drunk Rudy Giuliani, according to DDT’s former campaign adviser Jason Miller, urged DDT to declare victory on election night despite the almost-unanimous objections of DDT’s campaign advisers. DDT overruled his advisers and announced his win at 2:30 am, the morning after the election while millions of ballots had not been counted.

Bill Stepien, DDT’s 2020 campaign manager, wasn’t available to testify because his wife went into labor, but he had earlier testified that he told DDT not to declare victory. He also tried to explain to DDT the benefits and aftereffects of mail balloting, even bringing in House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) for support, but DDT rejected the information. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), an investigative committee member, said that the testimony showed DDT ignored his campaign experts’ advice on election night. https://www.npr.org/2022/06/13/1104657476/recap-jan-6-committee-hearing  In his earlier testimony, Stepien, who tried to get DDT re-elected, called himself part of “Team Normal.”

From that time, DDT ignored competent campaign advisers to follow the conspiracy theories of Giuliani and new campaign attorney Sidney Powell. Those claims included that the Venezuelan communist government had rigged Dominion Voting Machines to put Joe Biden in the White House.

DDT’s former AG Bill Barr declared that DDT had “lost contact with—he’s become detached from reality.”

Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, said he told DDT to stop taking advice from Giuliani, but DDT said he had “confidence in Rudy.”

Former Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue testified he told DDT about how DOJ officials investigated claims of fraud in Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania, etc. and found that information given to DDT was inaccurate. DDT then moved to other claims of fraud. Barr echoed Donoghue’s statements about telling DDT that these claims were “bullsh*t.”

Chris Stirewalt, former political editor at Fox News who was fired after he led the station to call the 2020 election for Biden, explained in detail the “red mirage” concept, how Republicans do well in early vote-counting until Democratic votes pile up later from a preference for mail voting. DDT’s advisers gave him this information, but DDT still declared an immediate victory. He demanded “all voting to stop” during his early morning speech on November 4 because he was ahead. Stirewalt said DDT had no chance of winning the 2020 election after the votes started coming in.

The hearing ended with a presentation on DDT’s use of the conspiracy theory to raise $250 million, purportedly for the “election defense fund” which didn’t exist. Up to 25 emails went to potential donors a day with the last one 20 minutes before the insurrectionists breached the U.S. Capitol on January 6. According to Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), DDT used this fund to pay his family. DDT’s former campaign staffers testified that the tool was a marketing ploy and millions went to conservative groups run by DDT allies, including his former chief of staff Mark Meadows. Misleading donors about the destination of their funds is fraud.   

DDT can’t keep himself from responding to the hearings. He called Barr “a cowardly RINO and shill for the Marxist Democrats.”

DDT said he started his Twitteresque “Truth Social” for free speech because Twitter doesn’t follow the First Amendment, but people who posted positive opinions about the hearings have had their accounts suspended. The day after the first hearing, DDT ranted on his personal social media platform, Truth Social, about people speaking against him in the hearings. Former AG Bill Barr is a “coward,” “weak,” and “frightened” after he said he told DDT three times there was no evidence of election and voter fraud. DDT’s daughter Ivanka Trump “was not involved in looking at, or studying, election results. She had long since checked out and was, in my opinion, only trying to be respectful to Bill Barr and his position as attorney general [and] “he sucked!” Ivanka Trump said she had “accepted” Barr’s conclusions regarding the election because she respects him. DDT claimed he “NEVER said, or even thought of saying, ‘Hang Mike Pence,'” referencing Cheney’s statement to the contrary, quoting DDT as saying, “Maybe our supporters have the right idea. Mike Pence ‘deserves it.”

Supposedly, DDT started his Twitteresque “Truth Social” for free speech because Twitter doesn’t follow the First Amendment, but people who posted positive opinions about the hearings have had their accounts suspended.

DDT has no rebuttal to the claims from his Republicans in the hearings so he issued a 12-page commentary criticizing domestic issues and repeating the “stolen election” claim.

On June 9, almost 20 million people watched the House January 6 investigative hearings, the plurality of 4.8 million viewers on ABC and 4.1 million on MSNBC. Fox network showed hearings on Fox Business Network and various Fox Nation streaming platforms available to affiliate stations because the network didn’t preempt Tucker Carlson’s hour-long, ad-free lies at the same time. Carlson called committee chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and Liz Cheney (R-WY) “lunatics.” Sean Hannity talked over the silent version of the videos. Conservative Newsmax showed many of Cheney’s statements but cut away for opposing commentators with banners displaying talking points by Deposed Donald Trump (DDT).

Fox’s focus is on profit so the network showed the second hearing on June 13, which infuriated Tucker Carlson. Unable to refute the Republicans’ testimony, analysts complained about Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) not being on the investigation committee to “cross-examine” witness such as Bill Barr. Jordan has refused to comply with the committee’s subpoena, missing a second deadline. Earlier he said he had nothing to hide, but he had participated in White House meetings to overturn the election.

The investigative committee is following DDT’s “seven-point plan” to steal the election:

1. DDT spread false and fraudulent information about the 2020 election being stolen from him.

2. DDT corruptly planned to replace the Acting Attorney General, requiring the DOJ to support his lies.

3. DDT corruptly pressured VP Mike Pence to refuse to count certified electoral votes, violating the U.S. Constitution and the law.

4. DDT corruptly pressured state election officials and state legislators to change election results.

5. DDT’s legal team and his other associates told Republicans in multiple states to create false electoral slates and send those slates to Congress and the National Archives.

6. DDT “summoned and assembled a violent mob in Washington and directed them to march on the U.S. Capitol.”

7. During the violence, DDT ignored multiple pleas for assistance and failed to take action to stop the violence and order his supporters to leave the Capitol.

Investigators are on the way to uncover all these. DDT may have ignored the necessity to actually win the election. From the beginning he may have been planning to take it over without requiring the votes.

Stephen Colbert’s monologue about the first hearings on The Late Show.

Primaries tomorrow on June 14, 2022: Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, and South Carolina.

May 20, 2022

Republicans Fight Democrats, Each Other

A week after Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) had his time in the sun by single-handedly blocking the $40 billion Ukraine aid package, the Senate passed the House bill by 86-11. Eleven Republicans, 22 percent of the GOP caucus, voted against the bill: Marsha Blackburn (TN), John Boozman (AR), Mike Braun (IN), Mike Crapo (ID), Bill Hagerty (TN), Josh Hawley (MO), Mike Lee (UT), Cynthia Lummis (WY), Roger Marshall (KS), Paul, and Tommy Tuberville (AL). All 57 dissenters to the bill in the House vote 368-57 are Republicans. 

About the serious shortage of baby formula, Republicans claim that President Joe Biden is doing nothing about the problem or women should breastfeed so they don’t need the formula.

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), among the House leadership, called Biden and other Democrats “pedo grifters.” She blamed the shortage on Biden’s economic policies instead of mismanagement by one of the four monopolizing manufacturers with dirty conditions and massive expenditures on the company’s stock. Republicans ignore Biden’s actions solving the shortage:

  • Invoking the Defense Production to speed up the production.
  • Authorized the Defense Department to use commercial aircraft to bring more imports for overseas.
  • Requiring suppliers to fulfill orders from baby-formula producers before other customers.
  • Making a deal with Abbott Nutrition for them to manufacture baby formula if they clean up the plant where it’s made.

His ideas seem much better this one from Republicans, introduced by Texas GOP Gov. Greg Abbott: starve migrant infants so that white infants will have the formula. Or Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), allegedly accused of sex trafficking minors, who wants to deny fomula to infants in poor families and save it for “hard-working Americans.”

The House appropriated $28 million in emergency funds for the baby formula shortage, but only 12 Republicans supported the bill. Stefanik, a new mother who uses baby formula, was not one of them, but she did vote for the Access to Baby Formula Act, temporarily waiving exclusive contracts between states and baby formula manufactures for six million people enrolled in the Women, Infants, and Children program. Nine other Republicans, however, voted against that bill: Andy Biggs (AZ), Laurie Boebert (CO), Matt Gaetz (FL), Louie Gohmert (TX), Paul Gosar (AZ), Marjorie Taylor Greene (GA), Clay Higgins (LA), Thomas Massie (KY), and Chip Roy (TX).  Stefanik’s own bill was for more foreign imports of the product. 

The Senate unanimously passed the Access to Baby Formula Act but didn’t take up the funding bill.  

The U.S. House also passed a bill 217-207 permitting Biden to issue an energy emergency declaration blocking gasoline and home fuel price gouging. Despite the huge hue and cry from the GOP about inflation, no Republicans voted for the bill, and it has little chance of getting the necessary 60 percent of votes in the Senate. Four House Democrats joined Republicans in opposing the bill: Reps. Jared Golden (ME), Lizzie Fletcher (TX), Stephanie Murphy (FL), and Kathleen Rice (NY). 

The partisan vote in the House of 222-203 on the Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act of 2022 shows how the GOP supports white supremacy.

Republicans hate globalization and want to bring home manufacturing, but Senate Republicans will likely drop a small program to train workers in new careers if they lose jobs from offshoring. GOP legislators say the U.S. is not working on new trade deals with other countries although old trade deals are still in effect. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) stated that Republicans care very little “about people getting laid off because of bad trade deals and tax policy that encourages jobs to go overseas.”

As frustrated as Democrats are with the GOP, Republican splits are causing dissension within the party. Hardline tactics of the highly conservative House Freedom Caucus have forced recorded votes instead of voice votes on what should be noncontroversial bills; legislators forced to stay for the voting can’t leave to do other business. A heated confrontation during a 2.5-hour voting on 13 measures led to raised voices from Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) and caucus members Reps. Chip Roy (R-TX) and Scott Perry (R-PA), the current chair. Witnesses reported that Rogers promised consequences for the Freedom Caucus members if they continue delaying tactics. Beyond virtuous comments about the need to review all legislature, the Freedom Caucus bragged that they slow down the Democrats’ “agenda.” Suspension bills need a two-thirds’ vote to pass, and some are failing because of GOP opposition. One required the VA to provide contraceptives without co-pays. The bill later later passed after the normal rules process. In another bill, Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) was the only member of the House to oppose a resolution calling on leaders to condemn anti-Semitism.  

The House January 6 investigation committee is heating up the media with more information about who worked to overturn Biden’s presidential election. With evidence that Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) led a tour of the Capitol complex on January 5, 2021, the committee wrote him, asking for his testimony. GOP legislators had claimed that security footage shows “no tours, no large groups, no one with MAGA hats on” in the complex on the days before the insurrection. The committee wants to know about “individuals and groups engaged in efforts to gather information about the layout of the U.S. Capitol, as well as the House and Senate office buildings, in advance of January 6, 2021.”

Both Loudermilk and Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IA) denied any tour like that, stating “a constituent family with young children meeting with their Member of Congress in the House Office Buildings is not a suspicious group or ‘reconnaissance tour.’” They added, “The family never entered the Capitol building.” Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ) accused Republicans of leading tours to people using them to help interrupt the certification of the 2020 presidential election results. She didn’t provide any names, and Loudermilk called anyone in Congress who made these claims “morally reprehensible and a stain on this institution.” He asked the House Ethics Committee to “take quick and decisive action to ensure this never happens again.” The committee’s evidence contradicts these denials and raises questions about Loudermilk’s tour and its purpose. He is also among those texting former chief of staff Mark Meadows to overturn the election.

Note that Loudermilk and Davis lied with their claim of “no tours” for the past 16 months.

New committee findings include official White House photos from January 6 showing Dictator Donald Trump’s (DDT) activites on the day. The probe is also targeting DDT’s 11:20 am phone call with then-VP Mike Pence in a final push for him to overturn the election and DDT’s 2:24 pm attack tweet, “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution.” At that time, the Secret Service was rushing Pence into an underground Capitol loading dock for protection from the mob. The committee perceives this tweet as the driver of the mob’s fury and worst violence as well as DDT’s indifference to it.

Shortly after the 2020 presidential election, billionaire Larry Ellison, co-founder/chair of the Oracle software company and the biggest backer of Elon Musk’s attempted Twitter takeover, participated in a call with Fox’s Sean Hannity, DDT’s lawyer Jay Sekulow, True the Vote’s attorney James Bopp Jr., and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) focusing on strategies for overturning the election. Ellison’s part may have been to assess Sidney Powell’s false claims about voting machines. He has been an active participant in a number of DDT’s conspiracy theories.  

Powell, well-known for her evidence-free claims of election fraud in multiple court cases, is now providing financial support for high-profile insurrectionists through donations to her non-profit, Defending the Republic. One of them, Kelly Meggs, is an Oath Keeper facing seditious conspiracy charges who has a new lawyer after her former one, Jonathan Moseley, was disbarred in Virginia for improper billing practices. In 2009, Virginia suspended his law license for frivolous discovery requests and false statements about the judge in the case. On January 6 he was in a restricted area at the Capitol but said he didn’t notice.

Known as the “Kraken,” Powell is also paying to defend Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and another Oath Keeper, Kenneth Harrelson, from the network of militia-style groups created in 2009 after Barack Obama’s first presidential election. A few dozen face criminal charges for the January 6 insurrection, and 12 of them have been charged with seditious conspiracy for allegedly plotting to use violence to stop the transfer of power to Joe Biden.

Powell was responsible for a far-reaching set of conspiracy theories about the non-existent election fraud from billionaire George Soros to the involvement of Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez who died in 2013. The committee subpoenaed Powell, and Dominion Voting Systems is suing her for $1.3 billion. She is also facing disbarment in Texas from allegations that she violated rules of professional conduct prohibiting attorneys from making false statements, using false evidence, bringing frivolous lawsuits, and taking a position that causes “unreasonabl[e] delays” or “burdens” and “engag[ing] in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation.”

Another DDT shyster lawyer and architect to overturn Biden’s election, Rudy Giuliani, testified to the House committee for nine hours.

Emails show Ginni Thomas, wife of SCOTUS Justice Clarence Thomas pushing two Arizona state lawmakers to overturn Biden’s win in that state by picking their own electors contrary to the popular vote. The justice is also godfather to the son of Arizona Supreme Court Justice Clint Bolick, married to one of the lawmakers, and the lawmaker, Shawnna Bolick, is a candidate for the secretary of state. Incestuous? Definitely a loss of democracy for Arizona’s voters if she’s elected.

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