Rep. Matt Gaetz wants to force House GOP to take a Trump loyalty test

On Tuesday, Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz and honorary “Florida man” Rep. Elise Stefanik, and 64 House Republicans presented a resolution to declare that Donald Trump “did not engage in insurrection or rebellion” related to the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol. Gaetz began the press conference by saying “We are here today to authoritatively express that President Trump did not commit an insurrection,”

More importantly, Gaetz made it clear that he plans to use this as a MAGA purity test. After thanking Sen. J.D. Vance of Ohio for filing a companion bill in the Senate, Gaetz said, “And now it's time for members of the House and Senate to show where they stand on this question.” And just like that, Gaetz’s remarks were followed by a series of Republicans praising dear leader Trump and saying how the insurrection on Jan. 6 was a concoction by “leftists.” 

“[What] we have seen is mass hysteria caused by you, the reckless leftist media,” said Rep. Andy Biggs. “That's what we've seen.”

Stefanik flanked Gaetz during the press conference, suggesting they’ve patched things up since the two spent October bickering at one another’s expense. Gaetz’s resolution reads in its entirety

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that former President Donald J. Trump did not engage in insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or give aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.

You can flip the paper over if you don’t believe me.

The idea that after hundreds of arrests, convictions, and prison sentences—as well as a congressional investigation that left very little to the imagination about how very much Trump and his allies orchestrated the insurrection—the horrors of Jan. 6 should be forgotten with a single-sentence resolution is almost hallucinogenic! It also signals how Trump and his supporters expect the GOP to fall in line. Those who sign on to Gaetz’s resolution will be on a list that Trump can point to and threaten Republican officials with for however long he lives.

As of now, two names are conspicuously absent from the list of sponsors of the bill: Reps. Jim Jordan and James Comer, both of whom have been doing Trump’s dirty work as chairs of House oversight committees.

Maybe they are too busy not finding evidence of wrongdoing by President Biden to sign on to a bill as ludicrous as this one. But as former Rep. Liz Cheney knows, Jordan will surely sign on to any bill pretending that Jan. 6, 2021, never happened.

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Dr. Fauci says this new administration’s belief in actual science and evidence is ‘liberating’

On Thursday, the Biden administration started its second day of work, signing a series of executive actions and holding press conferences. Dr. Anthony Fauci, arguably the only person who technically served during the Trump administration, has aptitude for his job, and wasn’t a morally bankrupt monster, held a press conference in the White house briefing room, all by himself, to discuss what new mutations of COVID-19 mean and to answer (mostly Trump-related questions) from the press corps. After acknowledging the 400,000-plus dead Americans, and explaining the need to get COVID-19 under control because the less infection spread means the less chance of mutations, Fauci was asked about differences between the Trump administration and the Biden administration.

These questions were asked in various oblique ways, like the first one—a seeming attempt to promote a right-wing apologetics BS story that tries to blame vaccine distribution problems not on the Trump administration but on Amazon. The question came from Fox News’ newest White House correspondent, Peter Doocy, Fox News logic contortionist Steve Doocy’s son. The argument is that the new announcement that the online retailer has offered help to the Biden administration in order to distribute vaccines more robustly is something that was purposefully held back from Trump and therefore, Trump’s bungling of everything he’s ever done is once again someone else’s fault. The question ended with whether or not Fauci knew of any talks about this kind of thing during the Trump administration. Fauci explained that he didn’t know what the difference might have been but that “One of the new things in this administration is that if you don’t know the answer, don’t guess. Just say you don’t know the answer.” 

Dr. Fauci said that so far, based on the information our government has right at this moment (remember, the Biden administration began about 24 hours ago), some of the mutations of the viruses seen around the world have not touched down in the U.S., Ffngers crossed. Fauci also explained that the new president is looking to really “amplify” the breadth of the distribution efforts—arguably the single most important thing our country needs right now to get back to some kind of baseline healthy stasis.

He also said he was optimistic we can get to a 70- or 80% vaccination level of the American population by the end of the summer, saying that in so doing we will be able to see a “degree of normalcy” reappear in our lives. Not a perfect normalcy, but not the current shitty 1990s action film we have all been extras in during the past 10 months. Dr. Fauci said his main concern was making sure Americans understand how important it is to get the vaccine—that fighting “hesitancy” will be the biggest hurdle as the year progresses. 

Again, Facui was asked what he thought of the new team the Biden administration has put together and whether or not things would have been different had they been in charge back in January when this first began. Fauci very diplomatically explained that he could tell you what he felt about the team but would not “extrapolate” beyond that. “One of the things that was very clear, as recently as about 15 minutes ago, when I was with the president, is that one of the things that we’re going to do is that we’re going to be completely transparent, open, and honest. If things go wrong, not point fingers, but to correct them, and to make everything we do based on science and evidence.”


Finally, asked about the difference Fauci felt being in front of the press under a Biden administration after “joking” today about the previous administration, Fauci did make a joke—a dead serious one. “You said I was joking but I was very serious about it. I wasn’t joking.” He went on to finish by explaining that everybody there saw that there were times under the Trump administration when non-scientific things like hydroxychloroquine and other things were pushed by the orange guy, and that it was a bad place to be. “The idea that you can get up here and talk about what you know what the evidence is, what the science is, and know that’s it. Let the science speak. It is somewhat liberating.”

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that Dr. Fauci would be back again. Sounds good to me. I like this version of Fauci the best.

Rep. Adam Schiff makes the irrefutable case for Bolton’s testimony

Donald Trump impeachment trial manager Rep. Adam Schiff has been so very stolid in his handling of the Republican-sham impeachment circus being orchestrated by the White House and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. As another day of appearances by Trump’s impeachment defense team began, House impeachment managers spoke to reporters in front of the Senate. The last question reporters asked was whether Schiff trusted former national security adviser John Bolton. Schiff used his response to point out the important issue: that the testimony of a witness such as Bolton is vital to a fair trial in the Senate.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF: It's not a question of whether I trust John Bolton or the Republican senators [trust] John Bolton, or the Democratic senators. He should be placed under oath. And this is why we think the testimony should be public. It should be live. Let the American people, along with the senators, evaluate John Bolton’s credibility when he testifies, and make their own judgment. But to say that we’re going to blind ourselves from a witness who has so clearly relevant testimony to one of the central most serious allegations against the president, I don't see how you could have a fair trial without testimony like that.

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