January 6 Committee To Hold Public Hearings – Chairman Declares ‘The Public Needs to Know What to Think’

The House Select Committee investigating the January 6th riot at the Capitol is reportedly set to hold six public hearings – two in primetime – alleging former President Donald Trump and his associates broke the law in trying to overturn the 2020 election results.

The hearings will be held in June, according to the Guardian, which first reported the news.

Calling it a “pivotal political moment for the country,” the outlet reports that the panel will attempt to “publicly outline the potentially unlawful schemes that tried to keep the former president in office despite his defeat at the hands of Joe Biden.”

Congressman Bennie Thompson, the chairman of the select committee, gave the game away in his remarks regarding the public hearings about January 6th.

“We want to paint a picture as clear as possible as to what occurred,” Thompson (D-MS) told reporters. “The public needs to know what to think. We just have to show clearly what happened on January 6.”

RELATED: McConnell Agrees With Democrats, Media That January 6 Was A ‘Violent Insurrection,’ Rips RNC For Censuring Cheney, Kinzinger

Public Hearings on Capitol Riot

“The public needs to know what to think.”

Isn’t that the Democrat party Summed up completely in an 8-word sentence?

The biggest question on everyone’s mind is, with 6 public hearings ranging between 1.5 to 2.5 hours in length, will Adam Kinzinger have enough tissues on hand?

Rick Wilson, a one-time GOP strategist turned fervent Never Trumper, was also shedding tears over news that the January 6 committee would be holding 6 public hearings.

In Wilson’s eyes, that’s not enough.

“SIX HEARINGS? SIX? Are. You. F***ing. Kidding. Me?” he wrote.

In a follow-up tweet, Wilson claimed Trump witnesses would “filibuster, bulls***, evade and jerk themselves off on live TV” in an attempt to stonewall the hearings.

RELATED: Former AG Bill Barr Wants Republicans To ‘Move On’ From Trump, Blames Him For Capitol Riot

Setting Up the Narrative

Reports back in April indicated Thompson and the committee were prepared to hold eight public hearings on the January 6th riot at the Capitol.

So, according to the sources involved, this would be a streamlining of the attempts by the committee to influence opinions of what happened that day.

Aside from having the goal of telling the American people what to think, the June hearings will allow time for a full report to be released just in time for the midterm elections.

“The panel … plans to release a full report about the deadly attack on the Capitol in early fall,” CBS News reported at the time. 

Similar to Thompson’s comments, committee member Jamie Raskin (D-MD) said the public hearings would be divided into chapters “that will allow for the unfolding of the narrative.”

As any good work of fiction would.

Raskin, of course, never was the subject of a public hearing about trying to overturn election results, despite objecting to counting electoral votes back in 2016.

The Guardian reports that sources have indicated that “committee attorneys will simultaneously flash texts, photos and videos to illustrate the testimony” during these public hearings.

This will be interesting since this same House Select committee admitted to doctoring a text message presented by Representative Adam Schiff as evidence at a hearing back in December.

The Guardian report notes that “the exact content and timings of the hearings are still subject to change.”

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As GOP blames Biden for Russia-Ukraine, remember these words: ‘I would like you to do us a favor’

There are 46 Republicans in the Senate today who in 2020 voted against convicting Donald Trump for withholding military aid from Ukraine in an attempt to get President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to dig up or manufacture dirt against a political opponent Trump feared. (Fifty-two Republican senators voted to acquit Trump, but six are no longer in the Senate.) The specifics here are important as we consider how those Republicans are responding to the Russian invasion of Ukraine—and how they are characterizing President Joe Biden’s response.

During a 2019 phone call, Zelenskyy said, “We are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps specifically we are almost. ready to buy more Javelins from the United States for defense purposes.” Javelins are an anti-tank weapon and have been essential in Ukraine’s defense against Russia. All you really need to know about Trump’s response is that it began, “I would like you to do us a favor though ...”

Trump froze $400 million in military aid to Ukraine as he made his extortion attempt, only unfreezing the aid months later after a whistleblower complaint about it. That frozen aid, coupled with his “I would like you to do us a favor, though,” as a direct response to Zelenskyy’s ask for more Javelins were at the center of Trump’s first impeachment, on which Mitt Romney was the only Republican senator to vote guilty.

Romney voted guilty, and Sens. Bill Hagerty of Tennessee, Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, Roger Marshall of Kansas, and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama were not in the Senate at the time. Every other Republican in the Senate—along with all 195 Republicans who voted in the House—voted against holding Trump responsible. (And Hagerty, Lummis, Marshall, and Tuberville absolutely would have voted not guilty given the chance.)

Trump has praised Vladimir Putin as Russia invaded Ukraine, and insisted that the invasion would not have happened if he had been in office. Trump is now claiming credit for NATO’s strength (after he threatened to pull the U.S. out of NATO) and for U.S. military aid to Ukraine, all part of his campaign to insist that this would not be happening if he were in the White House. In reality, what Putin would or wouldn’t be doing if Trump was in the White House is a mystery, but what we absolutely know is that if Putin invaded Ukraine, a Trump-led United States would not be taking a leading role in a major international diplomatic response.

Republicans, meanwhile, have largely either dodged answering whether they’re with him on his view of Putin or have tacitly supported Trump’s stance.

The Republican talking points are much more focused on blaming Biden than on blaming Putin. “Vladimir Putin’s decision to launch a renewed invasion of Ukraine is reprehensible,” House Republican leaders said in a group statement last week, before moving directly to their real interest. “Sadly, President Biden consistently chose appeasement and his tough talk on Russia was never followed by strong action.” These are people who literally voted against impeaching Donald Trump for withholding military aid to try to create a scandal that would harm Biden’s chances in 2020. Many House Republicans followed their leaders in blaming Biden more than they blamed Putin, and the same is true in the Senate.

And no wonder. Once Trump got Republicans to back him in attempting to extort elections help from Ukraine, where wouldn’t they go with him?

NY Rep. Calls For Biden To Be Impeached After Police Video Shows Feds Flying Illegal Immigrants Into NY

Republican Representative Claudia Tenney of New York is calling for President Biden to be impeached following the release of police video showing illegal immigrants being flown by federal contractors into an airport in New York in the dead of night.

The Political Insider reported Thursday on the bombshell video footage released by former Westchester County Executive and current Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino, which he obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.

The video shows federal contractors explaining to a police officer in charge of security at the facility that the illegal immigrant flights, which have reportedly been conducted at the Westchester County Airport since August, are to be “on the down-low.”

“The government is betraying the American people,” one contractor can be heard telling a police officer.

RELATED: Newly Released Police Video Shows Federal Contractors Flying Illegal Immigrants Into New York Airport

Tenney Wants Biden Impeached

Tenney (R-NY) voiced her outrage over the video in an appearance on “Fox and Friends” Thursday.

“This is a complete, aggravated dereliction of duty, which is why last night on Twitter I called for Joe Biden to be impeached and removed,” she demanded.

“His primary obligation as the commander-in-chief and president of the United States is to enforce our laws, to live up to his oath, to enforce our border security and to tell the truth to the American people.”

Tenney did, in fact, take to social media to demand the impeachment of President Biden upon viewing the video.

“President Biden should resign or face removal by impeachment for this repeated and aggravated violation of his oath of office to protect the American homeland and its citizens,” she tweeted.

RELATED: Ted Cruz: Biden Impeachment Likely If Republicans Win Back The House

Dereliction

Representative Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY), in the same interview, accused President Biden of being in violation of federal law for flying and releasing illegal immigrants into New York.

The congresswoman said aiding and abetting illegal immigration is a violation of the law. 

“And you have it coming from the president of the United States,” she pointed out. “It is completely unacceptable.”

Astorino, in a separate interview with Fox News, concurs with the illegality of what is being seen in the aforementioned video.

“These people are being relocated to places like Westchester, Long Island, suburbs, and other states, and nobody is informed,” Astorino explained.

“The communities that are affected, and we’re paying the bill on this. The taxpayers, nobody is informed,” he continued. “The federal government literally is breaking the law.”

The bombshell police video comes as statistics released by the CBP show a Biden administration unable or unwilling to get border crossings under control.

According to reports, there were 178,840 illegal immigrants apprehended at the border in December, breaking the previous record under DHS for that month by over 100,000.

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All told, nearly 2 million illegal immigrants have been apprehended at the border since Biden took office just over one year ago.

And it’s about to get worse.

According to Reuters, border officials are expecting as many as 9,000 border encounters per day by the spring – nearly 40% more than last year’s peak, which averaged 6,500 apprehensions per day.

Prior to the shocking airport video, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) argued that the humanitarian crisis at the border and the current administration’s “decision to just defy immigration laws” are grounds for impeachment.

“I think there are potentially multiple grounds to consider for impeachment,” Cruz has said. “Probably the most compelling is the utter lawlessness (of) President Biden to enforce the border.”

The midterm races would be crucial should Tenney and other Republicans officially move towards impeachment. A House in GOP control stands a far better chance of successfully approving articles of impeachment against President Biden.

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Ted Cruz: Biden Impeachment Likely If Republicans Win Back The House

Senator Ted Cruz is optimistic about a Republican takeover of the House in 2022, something he believes will lead to the impeachment of President Biden.

The Texas Republican made the comments in the latest episode of his podcast, Verdict with Ted Cruz.

The first step in the possible impeachment of the President requires the House falling back under Republican control after the midterms, something Cruz describes as a nearly 100 percent likelihood.

“I’m very optimistic about 2022,” he said. “I put the odds of the Republicans winning the house at 90/10 and it may even be higher than that.”

It is an assessment with which oddsmakers tend to agree.

RELATED: Marjorie Taylor Greene And Lindsey Graham Call For Biden To Be Impeached Over Afghanistan

Biden Impeachment on the Table

Senator Cruz went on to suggest once the House is in Republican hands several investigations would be opened into the Biden administration.

“If we take the House, which I said is overwhelmingly likely, then I think we will see serious investigations of the Biden administration,” Cruz said.

The Political Insider reported last month that the GOP is planning investigations on seven fronts should they prevail in the midterms: The IRS, the National Security Agency, parents of school children, the border crisis, COVID response, Afghanistan and JEDI.

That report has more detailed explanations of the investigations that will, according to Republicans, begin on Day 1.

On whether or not Republicans would turn investigations into impeachment action against President Biden, Cruz could envision such a scenario and reminded Democrats that they set the precedent.

“I do think there’s a chance of that,” Cruz said. “Whether it’s justified or not, the Democrats weaponized impeachment. They used it for partisan purposes to go after Trump because they disagreed with him.”

“One of the real disadvantages of doing that is the more you weaponize it and turn it into a partisan cudgel, you know what’s good for the goose is good for the gander,” he continued.

RELATED: MAGA Rep. Boebert Calls For Biden And Harris Impeachment, Pelosi To Be Removed Over Afghanistan Withdrawal

Will They Win the Senate?

Ted Cruz stated that the odds of Republicans winning the Senate, the chamber required for conviction after the House votes to impeach, isn’t quite as high.

“I put our odds at 50/50,” he said of potential GOP control of the Senate. “I think it’s going to be a really good year but it’s a bad map.”

Cruz went on to explain that the border crisis and Biden’s “decision to just defy immigration laws” are the most likely grounds for impeachment.

The crisis at the southern border continues to worsen with more than 173,000 illegal immigrants apprehended in November according to preliminary reporting.

That marks the highest total for November in the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) history.

Cruz’s colleague, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), believes the botched Afghanistan withdrawal is the most pressing need when discussing impeachment.

“I think Joe Biden deserves to be impeached because he’s abandoned thousands of Afghans who fought with us and he’s going to abandon some American citizens because he capitulated to the Taliban to a 31 August deadline,” Graham said as the withdrawal was taking place.

The evacuation and ceding control to the Taliban led to a suicide bombing killing 13 service members, a retaliatory drone strike by the United States that killed 10 civilians – including an aid worker and 7 children – and hundreds of Americans being left behind in the hostile country even to this day.

Cruz said no matter the focus, “there will be enormous pressure on a Republican House to begin impeachment proceedings.”

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As the Congressional Black Caucus celebrates its 50th year, we need to have their backs

During a time of open white supremacist hate-riotism, spurred on and enflamed by white elected Republican officials and their voters, it is easy to get discouraged and forget how far we’ve come when it comes to the racial dynamics of electoral politics of this nation. Historically speaking, even though Black people have been here in the “New” World since the late 1400s, and on the soil that would later become the United States as early as the 1500s, we haven’t been officeholders very long. 

The Congressional Black Caucus celebrated its 50th year in existence on June 30; we must renew our commitment to more African American representation, and not just in Congress; let’s also support increased representation in state houses and in local elections. I find myself feeling that sometimes we take Black officeholders for granted, even when I’ve seen such major changes in just my lifetime. I worry that the progress we’ve made could be easily stripped away if we don’t remain vigilant.

The Los Angeles Sentinel, a weekly Black-owned newspaper, reported on the pivotal anniversary last week.

Joyce Marie Beatty serves as the U.S. Representative for Ohio’s 3rd congressional district. Since 2013, she has been in that position and more recently, she became the Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus in 2021.

The congresswoman opened the floor with reflection of what the Black community has overcome due to the focus and dedication led by movements and diplomacy fighting for human equality and justice. The Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus also emphasized the continual work that needs to be done.

Beatty mentioned that June 30 marks the 50th anniversary of the CBC, stating, “For 50 years, the Congressional Black Caucus has fought for and on behalf of Black people and the communities we serve. Just as freedom fighters took to the dark roads in the dead of the night to call for an end to racism, for the right to vote—we continue to stand committed to the work ahead of us.”

Rep. Beatty herself shared the story.

50 years & going strong. ✊🏿 #OurPowerOurMessage https://t.co/PG2hC5OhoL

— Joyce Beatty (@RepBeatty) July 13, 2021

Think about it: The first Congress of the United States met on March 4, 1789, and it took over 80 years for Hiram Rhodes Revels to become the first Black senator in 1870, and for Joseph Hayne Rainey to become the first Black congressman, during the brief period of Reconstruction. They were followed by 19 other Black men—all from the South.  

There were no Black men in Congress after 1901, until the election of Oscar Stanton De Priest from Illinois, as the first non-Southern Black House representative. He took office on March 4, 1929. Across the Capitol, there was an 80-year gap with zero Black senators, until Massachusetts’ Edward Brooke took office in 1967. It wasn’t until  January 3, 1969, that the first Black woman, Shirley Chisholm, was sworn into a House seat. Not long thereafter, in 1971, the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) was formed, with the motto, coined by Rep. William (Bill) Clay of Missouri, “Black people have no permanent friends, no permanent enemies ... just permanent interests.”

I have had an interest in some of the founders of the Congressional Black Caucus for some time, notably Ron Dellums, who was a founder of the Progressive Caucus, and whose election as a Democratic socialist was engineered with the help of the Black Panther Party; Congressman John Conyers did a jazz radio show on my radio station in Washington, D.C.;  and Shirley Chisholm, who is one of my shero inspirations. But it wasn’t until I started doing twice-weekly roundups of CBC member’ activities for Black Kos that I realized that far too often, not much mainstream media attention is paid to these Black folks we have managed to get elected.

Two years ago, I covered some CBC history, noting that the Caucus was expanding in both “size and clout.”

The history, courtesy of the CBC’s own House.gov page:

During the late 1960s, Rep. Charles Diggs (D-Mich.) created the Democracy Select Committee (DSC) in an effort to bring black members of Congress together. Diggs noticed that he and other African-American members of Congress often felt isolated because there were very few of them in Congress and wanted to create a forum where they could discuss common political challenges and interests.“The sooner we get organized for group action, the more effective we can become,” Diggs said. The DSC was an informal group that held irregular meetings and had no independent staff or budget but that changed a few years later. As a result of court-ordered redistricting, one of several victories of the Civil Rights Movement, the number of African-American members of Congress rose from nine to 13, the largest ever at the time, and members of the DSC decided at the beginning of the 92nd Congress (1971-1973) that a more formal group was needed. “The thrust of our elections was that many black people around America who had formerly been unrepresented, now felt that the nine black members of the House owed them the obligation of also affording them representation in the House,” Rep. Louis Stokes (D-Ohio) said. “In addition to representing our individual districts, we had to assume the onerous burden of acting as congressman-at-large for unrepresented people around America.”

The Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) was established in 1971 by 13 founding members.

In 1977, 15 of the Congressional Black Caucus members posed on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, from left to right: (front row) Barbara Jordan of Texas, Robert Nix, Sr., of Pennsylvania, Ralph Metcalfe of Illinois, Cardiss Collins of Illinois, Parren Mitchell of Maryland, Gus Hawkins of California, Shirley Chisholm of New York; (middle row) John Conyers, Jr., of Michigan, Charles Rangel of New York, Harold Ford, Sr., of Tennessee, Yvonne Brathwaite Burke of California, Walter Fauntroy of the District of Columbia; (back row) Ronald Dellums of California, Louis Stokes of Ohio, and Charles C. Diggs, Jr., of Michigan.

The House.gov page also explores the CBC’s early struggles.

Shortly after the CBC was established, its battle with President Nixon began. After President Nixon refused to meet with the group, the CBC decided to boycott the 1971 State of the Union Address, which made national headlines. “We now refuse to be part of your audience,” Rep. William Lacy Clay, Sr. (D-Mo.) wrote to President Nixon on behalf of the caucus, explaining that President Nixon’s refusal to meet with the caucus was evidence that the Administration wasn’t interested in helping the African American community.   The CBC’s decision to fight its battle with President Nixon publicly worked in the caucus’ favor and became a strategy the CBC would return to again and again. President Nixon eventually agreed to a March 1971 meeting with the caucus. During the meeting, the CBC presented President Nixon with 61 recommendations to eradicate racism, provide quality housing for African-American families, and promote the full engagement of African-Americans in government. “Our people are no longer asking for equality as a rhetorical promise,” Diggs said. “They are demanding from the national Administration, and from elected officials without regard to party affiliation, the only kind of equality that ultimately has any real meaning—equality of results.” Press coverage of the meeting and the events leading up to it introduced the CBC to the nation. A few years later, in 1973, the CBC would be among the first members of Congress to call for President Nixon’s impeachment.  

CBS This Morning posted this historical overview of the CBC for Black History Month 2021. 

What I’d like to stress today is that with voting rights under siege in multiple states, and the teaching of Black American history being excoriated from the right, we need to have the backs of Black folks, and their staff members we’ve put out front on the firing lines, who have to live and work with death threats.

We also need to be aware of what bills they are proposing, sponsoring, and cosponsoring—as well as the challenges they face in their home districts. Mainstream media attention gravitates toward clickbait and controversy. We need to counter that by stepping up our support.

How many CBC members do you follow on social media? How many have you donated to, who are not in your district or state? Here’s a link to the current members: How many do you know something about?

It’s beyond time to step up and have these members’ backs!

How’s this for a rallying cry? If we lose the midterms, Trump will run again and (could) steal 2024

I never thought a fascist takeover of the galaxy could ever be less entertaining than the one depicted in The Phantom Menace, but here we are. One major American political party remains tethered to reality, whereas the other is a barmy cult of personality that worships at the clay feet of the worst human being I’ve ever laid eyes on outside of the port-a-potty queue at the annual Chilton, Wisconsin, Beer Festival—which is a long story, but trust me. And the line to pee in the creek is even worse. I only wish I were kidding.

Being the guileless backwoods naif that I am, I figured Donald Trump would be forced to slink away after the sound beating he received in November from the guy he kept calling a senile loser. After all, when George W. Bush left the country in a smoldering heap after his eight years of misrule, Republicans scrambled away from him like Quint trying to escape the shark on the deck of the Orca at the end of Jaws

But Trump is different. For one thing, he doesn’t have the common decency to concede an election he lost—by a lot. For another, he’s somehow mesmerized a majority of Republicans into believing he’s their bumblefuck messiah, despite having surrendered the White House and his congressional majority during his truncated tenure—and despite having incited a deadly insurrection based on corrosive lies about the integrity of our elections.

So here we are. I fully expected Republicans to dip a diffident toe or two back into consensus reality after the big dopey Dr. Zaius cosplayer was 86’d from the White House, but it looks like they’re all-in on febrile fantasy. 

The Maricopa County audit, the conspicuous (and appalling) lack of enthusiasm among Republicans for a Jan. 6 commission, the rebuke of ultraconservative but anti-Big Lie Republican Liz Cheney, polls showing that a majority of Republicans still think the election was stolen from Trump—it’s all more than a little scary. I was already freaking out about 2024 and the possibility that Donald Trump would run again instead of vanishing forever under a pile of fast food detritus after removing a load-bearing McRib box.

Then MSNBC’s Mehdi Hasan welcomed Yale professor Timothy Snyder and Emory University professor Carol Anderson, both historians and experts on democracy, onto his UpFront show. He asked them a chilling hypothetical: What happens if Republicans hold Congress in 2024 and a Democrat wins the White House?

Buckle in. This gets weird.

"If the Republican candidate is running on the Big Lie, if that's their issue in 2024...the Republican candidate who loses the election will indeed be appointed by Congress to be President of the United States," Prof @TimothyDSnyder tells me tonight. Wow.pic.twitter.com/Vaj4QL5Brx

— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) May 25, 2021

Transcript!

HASAN: “Tim and Carol, I’m going to ask you both the exact same question I asked Norm Ornstein and Ruth Ben-Ghiat on the show last week. If the Republicans are in control of the House and Senate come 2024 and a Democrat wins the presidential election narrowly, do you believe a Republican Party in Congress will certify that Democratic candidate’s win in Congress? Yes or no? Tim.”

SNYDER: “I think if the Republican candidate is running on the Big Lie, if that’s their issue in ‘24 the way that it seems to be in ‘22, then the answer to your question is the Republican candidate who loses the election will indeed be appointed by Congress to be president of the United States.”

HASAN: “Wow. Carol?”

ANDERSON: “Given that we have Republicans now who refuse to back the Jan. 6 commission, which was about the overthrow of an election … a fair election, given that we have the refusal of the Republicans to go in on impeachment, and given that they’re doing all of this work to undermine democracy with voter suppression and taking over control of electoral certification, I see this as a dress rehearsal for 2024 where they will not certify.”

HASAN: “Wow. So that’s Norm, Ruth, Tim, Carol. Four experts on this show all have answered this question in a very, very depressing way, but it’s important that we have this discussion.”

Jaw ===> floor

These experts aren’t in the mold of modern-day Republican “experts.” Ornstein, a contributor to The Atlantic and The Washington Post, helped draft parts of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law. Ruth Ben-Ghiat is a professor of history at New York University who “writes frequently for CNN and other media outlets on threats to democracy around the world.”

None of them, as far as I know, makes a living selling mediocre pillows to donkey-brained dipshits. So that’s scary shit, indeed. But it could also be an opportunity. Why? Because Donald Trump is a coward.

Let me explain. 

In a recent Politico story on Republicans’ attitude toward a potential Trump 2024 run, Trump flunky and perduring magic toadstool hallucination Lindsey Graham said this: 

“It’s more likely than not that he does” run, Graham said. “How we do in 2022 will have a big effect on his viability. If we do well in 2022, it helps his cause. I want him to keep the option open.”

So there it is, from Hermey himself. Graham doesn’t explain why Trump’s viability as a candidate would be improved if Republicans take back Congress in 2022 and then build their momentum enough to hold onto it in 2024, but I will: It would make stealing the election a piece of cake. 

Trump is a loser. Full stop. He lost in 2020 and, if our elections are conducted in 2024 the way they always have been (i.e., with Congress’ certification of the results being taken as a mere formality), Trump would almost certainly flame out, assuming President Joe Biden isn’t handed some major crisis that he fails to get under control.

After all, Trump lost by 7 million votes last time, and that’s before he tried to shiv democracy with his stabby little Chucky doll hands. The guy’s poll numbers were underwater for all but a few days of his White House tenure. On the day he left office, his aggregate disapproval rating, according to FiveThirtyEight, was a whopping 57.9%. Sure, the guy would likely skate through the primary process and would almost certainly be the GOP nominee if he ran, but he’d likely be dead in the water in the general election. Who (beyond his death cult) would want him back?

Most of the country has moved on and never wants to lay eyes on this sodden heap of off-brand urinal cake ever again. But Republicans—who, let’s not forget, make up less than 30% of the population—can’t get enough of the guy. Fifty-three percent of these deludenoids still think Trump is the rightful president, FFS. 

And so there’s our opportunity. Participation in midterm elections is typically far less than that of presidential elections. Voter turnout was strong in 2018—particularly in the suburbs—as many Democrats, independents, and disaffected Republicans came out to rebuke Trump and his agenda. Trump was on the ballot in 2020, and 81 million people came out to toss his ass, swamping the MAGAs’ own enthusiastic turnout.

Without a doubt, Trump can be a motivating factor, whether he’s on the ballot or not.

So here’s our motivation—and our rallying cry—for 2022.

If we lose Congress in the midterm elections, Trump will almost certainly run again, seeing his opportunity to cheat and manipulate his way to victory regardless of the actual results. If we keep Congress, Trump may finally slink away, knowing that he’d have little to no chance of pulling off another upset.

Incumbency is a huge advantage in a presidential election, and Trump won’t have that this time. His only advantage would be the likelihood—dare I say the guarantee?—of Republican treachery. But that can’t happen if there aren’t enough treacherous GOPsters in Congress to pull off an election theft.

So if you want Trump to run again—to be a major part of your waking life again—by all means, skip the midterm elections. If you don’t, show the fuck up, and make sure your friends and neighbors do, too.

That’s a rallying cry for 2022 if I’ve ever heard one. If we win in 2022, which we must, Trump will likely bugger off—finally and forever. Because he knows he can’t win, and he’s nothing if not a coward. If we lose, well, that could be the end of democracy as we know it.

Let’s win. In the face of insurmountable odds, let’s make sure we win.  

The alternative is simply too awful to consider.

It made comedian Sarah Silverman say “THIS IS FUCKING BRILLIANT” and prompted author Stephen King to shout “Pulitzer Prize!!!” (on Twitter, that is). What is it? The viral letter that launched four hilarious Trump-trolling books. Get them all, including the finale, Goodbye, Asshat: 101 Farewell Letters to Donald Trump, at this link. Just $12.96 for the pack of 4! Or if you prefer a test drive, you can download the epilogue to Goodbye, Asshat for the low, low price of FREE.

Republican leadership unanimously opposes probe of Jan. 6 insurrection

After House Democrats negotiated approximately forever with Republican lawmakers to come up with some version of an independent commission to investigate an insurrection attempt that caused the evacuation of the House and Senate, eventually settling on a version that gives Republicans most of what they demanded, Republican leadership ever so briefly suggested that while they were still opposed to the creation of the committee, they wouldn't tell their membership to vote against it.

That lasted less than a day, of course. By Tuesday evening Republican leadership had sent out messages asking their members to do just that, and while Minority Whip Steve Scalise asserted they were only recommending a no vote, not whipping members against it, his office soon made moves to do that, too. It seems that the compromises giving Republicans equal membership on the committee and shared subpoena power in addition to a hard deadline requiring the commission to finish their report before next January would not accomplish much: On the day of the vote, Republican House and Senate leadership are united in rejecting an independent investigation into the causes of a violent coup attempt aiming to nullify the November elections and install a leader by fiat.

Sen. Mitch McConnell wasted little time in rejecting the commission as well: After similar mumblings purporting to be undecided on the matter, by this morning the Senate Republican leader had—surprise!—also decided that even this commission makeup was too "unbalanced" towards Democrats to be supported.

The swiftness with which both House and Senate leadership reversed their initial Tuesday positions could have something to do with Donald Trump, the insurrection's leader, angrily denouncing the "unfairness" of the proposed investigation later in the day. While McConnell was willing to pin the blame for the insurrection directly on Trump even while crafting blowhard excuses for why the Senate should not impeach Trump over the violence, he has been as consistent as the seditionists themselves in rejecting calls for a commission tasked with reporting on the details.

The reason House and Senate Republicans continue to demand that Congress launch no independent investigation of an act of insurrection that nearly succeeded in capturing or assassinating Trump's declared enemies remains the same as always: A majority of those Republican lawmakers themselves promoted the false propaganda Trump and his team used to attack the integrity of the election, claiming it was "stolen" and therefore must be nullified. Their own actions caused deaths. It was their words that convinced—and continue to convince—the most radicalized members of their base that overturning an American election based on provable hoaxes was both patriotic and necessary.

The commission will find that blame for the violence rests squarely on Donald Trump and his top allies. Trump promoted the Jan. 6 "march" to the Capitol; the intent of the march was to stop Congress from carrying out the final electoral certification that would declare Trump the loser; the goal of the marchers who broke into the Capitol after his speech, scheduled so as to coincide exactly with the congressional count, stated in no uncertain terms that their goal was to end the count, force Congress into rejecting the election's outcome, and reinstate Trump as unconstitutional national leader.

Republican lawmakers were themselves both witnesses to those events and, in many cases, accessories. Rep. Kevin McCarthy is in particular danger if the commission is allowed to summon him to give testimony, as his conversation with Trump on that day—a conversation in which Trump expressed support for the rioters and rejected McCarthy's own pleas for intervention—is significant evidence of Trump's true intent as the violence was unfolding. Numerous Republican lawmakers and Trump appointees have similar testimony on Trump's actions and intent; all of it, put together into an official record of the event, will make clear that the Republican Party allied itself with seditionists that day, and that continued propaganda intended to discredit the outcome of the November election continues to threaten our nation's safety in the aftermath.

To a patriotic party, a full accounting of an attempted violent coup against American democracy would be a necessity. It would result in a far deeper investigation than any other terrorist act, such as the one in Benghazi. But to a party that has slipped into Dear Leaderism, an obsessive distribution of party-backed hoaxes and propaganda claims, condemnations of widespread voting, a near-total rejection of the notion that nonmovement governance is legitimate, and new insistence that crimes in service to Republican goals—Trump himself, Flynn, Manafort, Bannon, Arpaio—are both legitimate and to be celebrated, an accounting for the coup would predictably end in a devastating indictment of their party's corruption.

Not only are party leaders demanding their members withhold their support for such investigations, those leaders will work to sabotage and discredit the probe at every possible opportunity. They will demonize those appointed to the committee as traitors; they will spread new hoaxes claiming testimony against party members is a conspiracy against them.

The commission cannot come to any conclusion other than Trump himself gathered the marchers, painted rebellion as patriotic, and turned them loose to stop the transfer of power. For a Republican Party still stuck to the bottom of his shoe, that is something the public cannot be allowed to hear.

Donald Trump Jr. Rips Liz Cheney For Palling Around With Biden Before His Big ‘Socialist’ Speech

On Thursday, Donald Trump, Jr. criticized Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney on Twitter for warmly greeting President Joe Biden with a fist bump after his address to Congress, in which he laid out a “radical socialist vision.”

Trump Jr. joined his father in calling the anti-Trump Cheney a warmonger.

“‘Republican’ warmonger Liz Cheney gives Sleepy Joe a fist bump after he delivered a radical socialist vision for the future of America,” Trump Jr. tweeted.

“So glad she’s in the GOP leadership, I guess they wanted to be more inclusive and put Democrats in there too?!?”

RELATED: Meghan McCain Calls Out ‘The View’ For ‘Liberal Bias’ – ‘There’s A Reason Why Fox Is Killing It In The Ratings’

Cheney Defends Warm Greeting To Biden

Hours later, Cheney responded.

“I disagree strongly w/@JoeBiden policies, but when the President reaches out to greet me in the chamber of the US House of Representatives, I will always respond in a civil, respectful & dignified way,” Cheney tweeted.

“We’re different political parties. We’re not sworn enemies. We’re Americans,” she finished.

Cheney Explains Her Differences With Biden Administration

In another tweet, Cheney discussed her disagreement with the Biden administration’s policies.

Cheney wrote, “Biden, Pelosi and Democrats are set on abusing their power and infringing on our freedoms as they try to pass their radical agenda into law.”

RELATED: MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace Claims Tim Scott Lied In Rebuttal To Biden Address – ‘Reprehensible’

Cheney And Trump Sworn Enemies?

While Cheney says we’re all Americans and not sworn enemies, she has been aggressive in her condemnation of former President Donald Trump.

Cheney has been at odds with the Trump forces within the Republican Party for some time, including working with Democrats to block Trump’s withdrawal from Afghanistan.

But things really became heated after she voted for the second impeachment of the former president for alleged incitement of insurrection at the Capitol on January 6.

After Cheney said earlier this week that she would not rule out a 2024 presidential run, Donald Trump issued a statement denouncing the Republican congresswoman using the same “warmonger” rhetoric his son did in his tweet.

“She’ll either be yet another lobbyist or maybe embarrass her family by running for President, in order to save face,” wrote Trump.

“This warmongering fool wants to stay in the Middle East and Afghanistan for another 19 years, but doesn’t consider the big picture — Russia and China!” Trump said..

 

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Rep. Matt Gaetz is out of friends, drugs, and pimps. Might be time to cut your losses, pal

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz has long been a terrible, terrible person, which for the past 10 years has been a near-requirement for Republican officeholders in general. He made a name for himself as a rabid partisan of no particular values other than devoted sucking-up; his main contribution to his nation has been a vocal defending of Donald Trump each and every time Trump was caught in some new crookedness. That's it. He's known for that, for launching retaliatory strikes against Trump's enemies, for near-obsessive attempts to ingratiate himself with Dear Golfing Leader, and oh, would you look at that, living a not-so-secret life as a House Republican ultraperv now under investigation for drug-fueled sex trafficking. What are the odds: A man who fetishizes Donald Trump and is joined at the hip to Jim Jordan turned out to be a child rapist? Wow, go figure.

So we are absolutely allowed to enjoy his downfall, and if the man wants to drag this out in order to tarnish or implicate as many of his fellow House Republican sedition-backers as possible then by all means he should knock himself out with that. Do a backflip on the way down, buddy.

The latest humiliation, just so we are all gloriously up to date, is an expected one. Matt Gaetz evidently sought an urgent meeting with Donald Trump "after it was first revealed he was being investigated," says CNN, but was turned down by Trump's aides. Yes, the man who polished Dear Crooked Leader's boots to a shine in multiple impeachment investigations is being cut loose by the Mar-a-Lago crowd.

Now, just to put the proper emphasis on this: If there is any group in Florida that has their pulse on everything corrupt or worth corrupting, it is the denizens of Dear Golfing Leader's For-Profit Living Room and Covid Dispensarium, home of the all-you-can-eat Crime Buffet. The rapist and tax dodger Trump was carried into office by an assembly of small-time and mid-ranking conservative griftologists able to ingratiate themselves because they spoke the same two-bit language; once in office, he was treated as the Jesus of Petty Extortions. This crowd thinks the brown-nosing Matt Gaetz is cooked. This is the crowd that's cutting him loose.

Yeah, he's toast. Already, there's a robo-poll going around Gaetz's district testing names for who in Republicandom should run to replace him. Nobody's fessing up to paying for it, though.

The New York Times has our latest look at Joel Greenberg, the Florida Republican minor officeholder whose goings-on turned his friend Gaetz into a subject of a federal sex trafficking investigation, and the sheer scope of the man's seemingly compulsive crime-doing is ... yeesh. He may be the perfect Florida Republican, a lifetime screwup who spent just enough money to land himself a smalltime elected position in a state that doesn't give a damn about governing to begin with, a belligerent little hack who campaigned on swamp-draining but after taking office immediately seemed to fill his scorecard with every crime he could think of, both petty-ass and prison-worthy. As with every other crook in Florida, he latched onto the Gaetz and Trump crowd because go figure, it turns out sex crimes are one of the key Republican means of bonding, and now it seems he is a bit of a wreck because after f--king up everything else in his life he has a sudden fear of going to Big Boy Jail.

This is a child who would willingly burn every other conservative in Florida if it got him an extra pudding cup in prison lunchlines. He's going to cling to Gaetz's ankles so tenaciously Matt won't be able to board a plane without declaring him luggage.

Here's where things stand: House Republican Matt Gaetz is being probed for the possible sex trafficking of a 17-year-old. Along the way to answering that one last (?) question, people "familiar" with What Gaetz Was Doing have already confirmed to reporters that Gaetz has been openly bragging to his fellow House Republicans about his "conquests" (complete with videotapes); at least once accompanied Greenberg to Greenberg's fake-ID procurement office; "repeatedly" boasted to others about his antics with Greenberg; made at least one apparent sex trip to the Bahamas involving "female escorts" provided by another ally; appears to have assisted in procuring sex for other Republicans; and there are literally Venmo records of Gaetz paying at least three of the women through Greenberg. There's alleged drug use throughout, of course.

Oh, and he sought a "blanket" Trump pardon after he learned, in the last bits of Trump's time in office, that the feds were on to him. Oh, and his (other?) actions while in Congress were so continually grotesque his own staffers were sending videos to other Republicans.

That's not even all of it. That's just the highlights. And House Republicans knew about quite a bit of this, because Matt liked to "brag," and they did nothing because the party is a fascist cult now premised on letting their members get away with crimes.

Unfortunately for Matt Gaetz, he has failed to learn any of the basic lessons of Washington, D.C. Polishing Dear Leader's boots will get you absolutely nothing in return; there is no quid or quo among sociopaths and narcissists. When doing crimes, only do crimes that your associates can keep covered up. Attempt, if at all possible, not to be so universally hated in the nation that every last one of your Not Jim Jordan associates is putting out the popcorn and sitting themselves down on a couch to watch rigor mortis set in on your career.

If the man had an ounce of common sense he'd resign now, if only to make it not quite so spectacularly rewarding for national journalists to squeeze out new detail after new detail while he squirms. Instead, he's promoting seditionist conspiracies and being publicly dim. In times of trouble, some people retrench. Matt here is retrenching.

But Matt Gaetz has been a garbage human being ever since he first slithered out of the Florida swamps like an invasive python, he deserves every bit of it, everyone around him is a garbage human being for not ditching him long before this, and the sooner the Republican base figures out their party is just a crime-fueled sex cult with an advertising budget the better.