If you’re wondering how Republicans intend to fix the problems they keep complaining about—namely inflation, gas prices, and the downtrend in Americans’ overall financial stability—you’ll have to wait. Right now, they’re campaigning on complaining about those things, complaining about “the libs,” complaining about imaginary crime waves, and offering their own potential voters absolutely no relief from real problems.
Take, for example, Sen. Lindsey Graham’s closing comments in Georgia. Now, it’s not new that Graham is saying something ignorant and controversial, but this week the Republican Senator has been on a real spree. Campaigning for GOP Senate candidate JD Vance, Graham joked about mass suicide on Tuesday, Business Insider reported.
"You got something really special here. This guy is going to change the Republican Party, change the Senate, all for the better," Graham said at a Republican-hosted dinner party, referring to Vance. "But here's some words that really rattle the Democratic Party. What's the worst thing the Democratic Party wants to hear? Chairman Jim Jordan. There are gonna be people jumping off bridges in San Francisco by the thousands. You know, New York City, they may literally shut down.”
According to News Nation, Jordan, currently the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, is the talk of the town since he has pledged to conduct investigations into the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) if the GOP retakes the House.
It doesn’t really matter why Jordan plans to investigate the FBI and DOJ (it’s for investigating Trump); what matters is how little these hypothetical future investigations matter to everyday American families, and how little interest the GOP seems to have in actually alleviating the issues they claim Democrats have caused.
And, worse, given the increase in mental health issues across the nation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, this joke is especially cruel. According to The Los Angeles Times, the Golden Gate Bridge has seen the highest number of suicides on any bridge in the country—with an average of 30 people dying each year from taking the jump.
We all know Republicans hate Democrats, but that doesn't excuse jokes about suicide and violence, and it doesn’t solve problems voters need solutions for.
And, of course, it’s not only Graham. This week, though, it is mostly Graham. In response to allegations that GOP Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker pressured not one but two women to have abortions, Graham joined Walker in hosting a press conference.
Not only did Graham take that opportunity to support his awful friend, but once again took the chance to slam Democrats.
If Herschel Walker becomes a Republican? At the end of the day, Walker has consistently failed to offer plans for the primary topics of his television ads—inflation, supporting small businesses, and increasing clean energy. Graham, too, has failed to focus on the issues he promised Americans that he will uphold. Instead, he has taken to the tactic of creating fear. Americans need more than petty name-calling, and that seems to be the totality of Republican ideas.
By emphasizing violence and encouraging pain, he is appealing to voters who are in favor of such methods—in addition to normalizing that such tactics are okay. Of course, just like he has done with other comments like this one on suicide, he will claim it was all just a joke. But how is hoping for individuals to experience violence and wanting ‘every liberal to be miserable come election night' a joke? And how does it fix inflation?
Phrases of the same nature were called jokes before they led to events like Jan. 6, when individuals were hoping to harass, beat, and even kill Democratic members of Congress.
Encouraging violence is not all Republicans have a trend of doing, though. Scapegoating names they know will rile up those who aren’t in tune with the news or truth is another tactic. Rep. Ralph Norman used this tactic this week when claiming that America was run by elitists—dragging Barack Obama’s name in and again revealing the only real plans Republicans have: Targeting Democrats with a barrage of baseless subpoenas. “We are going to subpoena as many people as we can,” he said, claiming that Biden was not running the country and that Obama and Eric Holder were. How are Obama and Eric Holder still living rent-free in his head almost 6 years after leaving office? What’s next? Will they drag Hillary Clinton in for questioning? (Probably, actually. Let’s not assume they have limits.)
"And I think what he's saying is putting the country through impeachment, what you get could be even worse. We got our hands full. I don't — there’s no question about that. But we're going to subpoena as many people as we can: We are going to hopefully have consequences, starting with Mayorkas, Wray with the FBI, I mean a whole host of things. The whole administration is a rogue administration. And I guess we all know, Joe Biden is not running this country. There is a cabal of unelected elitists who are running this country. Probably Barack Obama is involved, probably Eric Holder and — but who knows. We know it's not Biden. But the impeachment deal is a long drawn out thing, and if there's anybody that was coherent they could take over, that would not ruin the country, but it's not possible with Kamala Harris."
Meanwhile, Democrats are again left to be the grown-ups in the room. Running campaigns and governing based on bipartisan ideals, even to the chagrin of the progressive left, and as usual, Democrats are tasked with the heavy lifting of creating legitimate policy positions and actionable ideas around health care, climate change, and national security.
If someone you know is struggling emotionally or having a hard time, you can be the difference in getting them the help they need. Dial 988 for the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.
It’s no real surprise that former President Donald Trump’s supporters would literally go to battle for their leader. It’s a frightening reality, but as we quickly approach the midterms and see the many MAGA nominees the Republican Party is supporting, it’s clear that Trumpsters are desperate to have the twice-impeached former president back at the helm.
CBS News reported on a new study from the University of Chicago that found 13 million U.S. adults believe violence is justified if it means putting Trump back into the White House, and another 15 million believe violence would be warranted to keep Trump from being indicted over the FBI’s investigation into his mishandling of classified government secrets.
During a Sept. 8 appearance on Face the Nation, Dr. Robert Pape, the director of the University of Chicago's Chicago Project on Security and Threats (CPOST), told moderator Margaret Brennan, "We have not just a political threat to our democracy, we have a violent threat to our democracy [...] Today, there are millions of individuals who don't just think the election was stolen in 2020; they support violence to restore Donald Trump to the White House."Campaign Action
According to CBS, there is some good news: The number of members of Trump’s cult has gone down since last year, when it hovered around 23 million willing to fight for the 45th president.
When asked why the group was so invested that they would be willing to use force to put Trump back in office or defend him from an indictment, CBS reports that Pape and his team found that it was both QAnon rhetoric and fears of being replaced, with many in the mostly white group of urban respondents buying wholeheartedly into the “Great Replacement” theory.
"[Great Replacement] is a conspiracy theory, but it's not just on fringe social media like Parler or Gab, 4chan or 8chan ... This is every day on Fox News, it's on Newsmax, it's on One America, it's on talk radio," Pape said.
Politico writer Jack Shafer states that Trump’s support from his most extreme MAGA followers is “messianic.”
“Although evicted from the White House 19 months ago, Trump still postures as if he were president. In addition to calling for reinstatement and a do-over election, Trump ensures that his office calls him the ‘45th president,’ not the former president. He continues to unlawfully use the presidential seal for commercial purposes. And his capricious handling of sensitive and secret documents at Mar-a-Lago — his idea that the papers belong to him and that he’s above the law — make the case that he’s come to believe in his own, permanent divinity. Trump said in 2019 that being president gave him ‘the right to do whatever I want,’ which is consistent with thinking you’re God’s co-pilot,” Shafer writes.
With about six weeks until the Nov. 8 midterm elections, Pape says he is worried about Trump’s supporters and how far they may go.
"If it's just a political threat, well, then we can have elections. Once it's not just denying an election, but using violence as the response to an election denial, now we're in a new game."
Trump and his followers proved on Jan. 6 how dangerously close they came to overturning our democracy. Help cancel Republican voter suppression with the power of your pen by clicking here and signing up to volunteer with Vote Forward, writing personalized letters to targeted voters urging them to exercise their right to vote this year.
Good judges are more important now than ever. In some states, judges are on the ballot this November. In this episode of The Downballot, we shine a spotlight on elections for state supreme courts: actor and activist Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Together, Daily Kos and Julia are proud to announce their endorsement of seven Democratic candidates running for closely divided courts in Michigan, North Carolina, and Ohio. You can support this slate by going to JusticewithJulia.com and donating today.
The Fulton County, Georgia, district attorney’s office is demanding that John Eastman answer questions for the special grand jury investigating election tampering in the state in 2020. The former attorney for Donald Trump is pleading the Fifth.
“By all indications, the District Attorney’s Office has set itself on an unprecedented path of criminalizing controversial or disfavored legal theories, possibly in hopes that the federal government will follow its lead,” the statement reads. “Criminalization of unpopular legal theories is against every American tradition and would have ended the careers of John Adams, Ruth Ginsburg, Thurgood Marshall and many other now-celebrated American lawyers."
The attorney, infamously known for creating the bogus falsehood that Joe Biden didn’t actually win the election, is among such MAGA notables as former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, and whiny Trump lapdog Sen. Lindsey Graham. All were called to testify in front of the Georgia grand jury and all have put up a fight—mostly to no avail.
Eastman was behind the idea of sending a group of fake electors out into swing states in hopes of blocking the congressional certification of the 2020 election.
The New York Times reports that Eastman continued looking for election irregularities long after Trump was out of office. In one of a slew of previously uncovered emails, Eastman wrote, “A lot of us have now staked our reputations on the claims of election fraud, and this would be a way to gather proof… If we get proof of fraud on Jan. 5, it will likely also demonstrate the fraud on Nov. 3, thereby vindicating President Trump’s claims and serving as a strong bulwark against Senate impeachment trial.”
Kemp’s attorneys tried everything to save the incumbent governor from giving a sworn statement. But according to reporting from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Monday, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney refused to allow the governor to skirt his testimony but did allow him to push it off until after the Nov. 8 midterm elections.
Giuliani tried to play the “too sick to testify” card but was staunchly shut down by McBurney and appeared in Atlanta on Aug. 17 to give testimony.
Graham is doing everything he can to avoid testifying to the special grand jury in Georgia, including filing a brief on Aug. 24 that reasons that the subpoena to testify is invalid based on a rarely used section of the U.S. Constitution.
“The Constitution guarantees that a Senator ‘shall not be questioned’ about his protected ‘Speech or Debate’—and yet the District Attorney insists that Senator Graham must submit to questioning to ascertain whether he can be questioned or is immune from questioning. That makes no sense,” Graham’s motion reads.
Eastman also pleaded the Fifth in refusing to answer questions from the House committee investigating the Capitol attack on Jan. 6, per USA TODAY.
Representative Peter Meijer lost his Michigan primary battle against John Gibbs Tuesday, leading former President Donald Trump to celebrate the defeat of yet another Republican who voted in favor of his impeachment.
Meijer, who voted in favor of establishing a bipartisan commission to investigate the Capitol insurrection and said prior to the primary that he does “not for a second” regret his impeachment vote, conceded to Gibbs early Wednesday morning.
Gibbs, an official who served within the Trump administration, had the backing of the former President and received a congratulatory phone call following the victory.
“I’ll see you soon,” Trump told him. “I’m very proud of you. That’s a great job.”
John Gibbs took a call early Wednesday, Aug. 3, from former President Donald Trump congratulating him on his victory over Congressman Peter Meijer in the GOP primary.
“I’ll see you soon,” Trump said. “I’m very proud of you. That’s a great job.” pic.twitter.com/QnCiqYkOOV
— Muskegon Chronicle (@MuskegonChron) August 3, 2022
Peter Meijer Suffers Defeat, Trump Celebrates
Gibbs had described the primary defeat of Peter Meijer as “a battle for the heart and soul of the Republican party,” noting that the Republican congressman “betrayed his voters” by voting in favor of impeachment just days after being sworn into Congress.
Nobody could have been happier about the result than Trump.
“Fantastic night in Michigan! Tudor Dixon will be a great Governor. John Gibbs WON with a big surge in the end,” he wrote on his Truth Social media platform. “Not a good time for Impeachers – 7 down, 3 to go!”
Dixon also earned an endorsement from the former President and will now face Democrat incumbent Gretchen Whitmer in the gubernatorial race in Michigan following her primary win.
Trump-endorsed Tudor Dixon has won the Republican primary for Michigan governor.
— POLITICO (@politico) August 3, 2022
“Endorsements don’t get any more powerful or conclusive than the Endorsements of last night,” Trump wrote in another post. “I wonder if anyone will write or report that? Just asking?”
Meijer joins Representatives Tom Rice, who was soundly defeated in the Republican primary for South Carolina’s 7th District in June, and Adam Kinzinger (IL), Anthony Gonzalez (OH), Fred Upton (MI), and John Katko (NY), who all decided to flee Congress after voting to impeach Trump, as six of the “7 down” referenced by the former President.
Trump may be counting on Liz Cheney’s (WY) ouster as well, as she trails her opponent by 22-points in a primary scheduled less than two weeks away.
“Friday’s Casper Star-Tribune/Mason-Dixon poll revealed Hageman leads Cheney by 22 points (52 to 30 percent). Eleven percent are undecided. According to previous polling, Hageman is leading in the polls by 28 and 30 points.” https://t.co/abpGolgKO7
— Ned Ryun (@nedryun) July 17, 2022
Trump Still Holds Power in the GOP
While the rate of impeachment voters being ousted from Congress is fairly high, it hasn’t been perfect.
Representative David Valadao (R-CA) fended off a primary challenge in June, though Trump did not endorse any candidate in the race.
Meanwhile, Representatives Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA) managed to earn a place amongst the top two in their district’s crowded fields, besting their Trump-backed opponents and meaning they will survive and advance to the general election.
U.S. Reps. Jaime Herrera Beutler and Dan Newhouse were leading their pro-Trump challengers despite backlash over their votes to impeach the former president. https://t.co/7LpjKt0o8A
— The Seattle Times (@seattletimes) August 3, 2022
Still, as Fox News reports, Tuesday’s results show Trump’s “immense grip over the Republican Party remains firm.”
They cite as further evidence victories by Blake Masters, who won the GOP Arizona Senate primary, and Mark Finchem, who won the Republican nomination for Arizona Secretary of State.
Masters moves on to Democratic Senator Mark Kelly in November in a key battleground state race that may determine if Republicans are able to win back the Senate majority.
Kari Lake, the Trump-backed former TV news anchor leads her primary for Governor of Arizona, though the results are still too close to call.
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The post Trump Celebrates Defeat of Rep. Peter Meijer, Who Voted For Impeachment: ‘7 Down, 3 to Go!’ appeared first on The Political Insider.
After more than a year of avoiding jail time related to the murder of a pedestrian, South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg may finally be held accountable for his actions. Calls for his resignation are increasing nationwide as he faces an impeachment inquiry.
Investigations into his actions were opened up to the public by Ravnsborg’s Republican colleague, Gov. Kristi Noem. According to Daily Kos, new evidence in the case was shared in March by a Noem appointee.
The GOP attorney general was driving home from a political fundraiser on Sept. 12 when he struck a man, who was walking on the side of a highway. In a 911 call after the crash, Ravnsborg claimed he hit a deer. He said he didn't realize he struck a man until he returned to the crash scene the next day and discovered the body of Joseph Boever. He failed to mention that the victim’s glasses were in his car. Claiming he did nothing wrong, Ravnsborg insisted he remains the state's top law enforcement officer.
At the time, many Republicans supported this decision, but his popular predecessor Marty Jackley has gathered even more support, causing GOP officials to slowly “turn” on Ravnsborg and rethink his driving accident.
According to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, the South Dakota House of Representatives will decide whether or not Ravnsborg can stay in office on Tuesday. The vote could end as the state Capitol’s first-ever impeachment of a constitutional officer.
The move follows an investigation recommended to the House Select Committee last month. Despite investigations and new evidence being introduced, the chamber decided not to vote to impeach following a secret closed meeting on March 28. Since then, resolutions have pushed representatives to rethink their decision.
"This is long overdue, and hopefully, we can get the situation resolved for the betterment of the people of South Dakota," Rep. Sydney Davis told the Argus Leader.
Others "on the fence” expressed similar concerns, including Republican State Rep. Charlie Hoffman, who was swayed after a presentation by South Dakota Highway Patrol troopers last Wednesday, in which Ravnsborg was proven to be a reckless driver.
“After seeing the length of time Mr. Boever’s body was on the AG’s car with his head inside of the AG’s car’s window, and then flying off hitting the middle of the lane behind the AG’s car, leaving bone fragments on the road and skidding into the ditch at 65 mph, my mind has changed,” he told The Daily Beast on Friday. “I now have irrefutable evidence the AG knew exactly what he hit and lied to investigators and the Hyde County sheriff.”
The presentation confirmed multiple speeding tickets and other driving violations Ravnsborg had received.
According to the Dakota Free Press, investigations have found various discrepancies and issues in how the case was handled. The sheriff who allegedly gave Ravnsborg a ride after the incident not only failed to investigate the accident but ignored scenes of the crime, including Boever’s flashlight, which he assumed was from Ravnsborg’s car.
The decision to impeach now lies in the hands of the full House. Given the new details the Department of Public Safety provided this week to prove Ravnsborg was distracted the night he killed Boever, one can hope the House will make the right decision.
Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes, an ally of former President Donald Trump, is reportedly planning to primary Mitt Romney for his Utah Senate seat in 2024.
Politico revealed that Reyes is discussing a potential run with political players in state politics and supporters and allies associated with Trump.
A source for the outlet who is close to Reyes said he is “very seriously considering running” regardless of what Romney decides to do in 2024.
“He’s confident that regardless of what Senator Romney wants to do, he’s going to pursue this,” they told Politico.
Utah AG Sean Reyes is preparing for a 2024 Senate run that could pit him against Mitt Romney in a GOP primary.
Reyes backed Trump’s efforts to challenge the 2020 results and has been elected statewide three times.
— POLITICO (@politico) March 16, 2022
Sean Reyes May Challenge Mitt Romney in 2024
Romney has a couple of options in the 2024 election cycle.
A national poll last month shows that Senator Romney runs even with fellow Republican Senator Ted Cruz at 4% of those voters making a choice for the Republican presidential primary.
That number ranks well below the 53% Trump received in the same poll, but would land him some votes.
Another poll one month earlier shows 64% of Republicans in Utah disapprove of Romney’s job performance, including half who strongly disapprove.
Last spring, the Senator had boos and catcalls cascaded down upon him from well over 2,000 Republican delegates at the Utah Republican State Convention.
ICYMI: Here is Romney getting booed:pic.twitter.com/x7BVX2X5i9
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) May 3, 2021
The Republican Party in Weber County, Utah, issued a formal censure of Romney for his multiple votes to convict Trump during his impeachment trials.
Trump issued a statement around that time calling the Utah senator “a stone-cold loser!”
BREAKING: Trump statement on Mitt Romney getting booed at the Utah Republican State Convention this weekend pic.twitter.com/HhqHBdQIRa
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) May 3, 2021
Romney’s Odd Behavior
Politico describes Sean Reyes as “a Trump loyalist” and reports that he’s met with the former President on two occasions “and each time Trump encouraged him to run against Romney.”
“When he meets with Trump, the only thing that comes up is ‘Will you run against Romney? I need you to run against Romney. Get that guy out,’” their source is quoted as saying.
Reyes backed Trump’s efforts to challenge the 2020 election results.
Asked about the prospect of running against Reyes, a confident Romney welcomed the challenge.
“Were I to decide to run again, the best news I could get would be that Sean Reyes was my opponent,” he said laughing and walking away.
On the news of Utah AG preparing to possibly primary him in 2024, Romney tells @burgessev:
— Natalie Allison (@natalie_allison) March 16, 2022
Romney, often touted as center-right, moderate, or simply the voice of reason in the Republican Party, has been engaged in some extreme commentary and behavior of late.
He blamed the Russian invasion of Ukraine on the Trump-touted concept of ‘America First.’
“Putin’s impunity predictably follows our tepid response to his previous horrors in Georgia and Crimea, our naive efforts at a one-sided ‘reset,’ and the shortsightedness of ‘America First,’” said Romney.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) February 24, 2022
This week, Romney joined Democrats as the only Republican to vote against repealing the transportation mask mandate.
Even eight Democrats had more courage than Romney and voted to end the yearlong mask charade.
Guess who the only Republican Senator was who voted to keep mask mandates on airplanes, yesterday?
You guessed it – Mitt Romney.
— Catturd (@catturd2) March 16, 2022
He also engaged in truly extreme rhetoric, the likes of which you’d expect to hear “The View” or CNN, rather than a supposedly level-headed member of Congress, when he accused decorated Iraq War veteran and former Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard of being a Russian asset and spreading “treasonous lies.”
Tulsi Gabbard is parroting false Russian propaganda. Her treasonous lies may well cost lives.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) March 13, 2022
And, lest we forget, Senator Romney took part in a Black Lives Matter march to the White House in 2020.
— PeopleTV (@peopletv) June 8, 2020
Romney was filmed marching with protesters while explaining that he was walking “to make sure that people understand that Black Lives Matter.”
“We need a voice against racism … we need many voices against racism and against brutality,” he said. “And we need to stand up and say black lives matter.”
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Some GOP officials never seem to know when to give up. Despite having absolutely no proof, cries that the election was stolen still seem to ring in the ears of Republicans. Despite legal experts noting that it was impossible, a Wisconsin judge has claimed that there are grounds for the state legislature to “decertify” the results of the 2020 election. The claim follows a review of the election demanded by Republicans, in which individuals in the state assembly hired Michael Gableman, a former state supreme court justice to investigate the election.
The 136-page interim report released Tuesday has received widespread bipartisan criticism and has been labeled unnecessary because not only was it poorly done but used $676,000 in public funds. During a presentation of the report Tuesday, Gableman said the state Legislature should “take a very hard look at the option of decertification of the 2020” presidential election. Moments before Gableman presented, Donald Trump encouraged supporters to listen in, BuzzFeed News reported.
Both Democrats and Republicans alike rejected the idea and called the move illegal.
“Still not legal under Wisconsin law,” Republican Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke tweeted. “Beyond that, it would have no practical impact b/c there is no Constitutional way to remove a sitting president other than through impeachment or incapacity. Fools errand. Focus on the future.”
Not sure what kind of attorney Gableman was, because the report not only falsely claimed Biden’s win could be decertified, but also said that decertifying the election would not have any legal consequence.
“It would not, for example, change who the current president is,” the report said.
Of course, like other conservatives, Gableman also attempted to backtrack what he said and issued confusing contradictory statements.
When Democratic state Representative Jodi Emerson, asked him, "Are you saying we should decertify Wisconsin's votes from 2020?"
"I'm not saying it and I did not say it because it's not my place to say it. What is my place to say, and what I do believe, and what I do say, is there appears to me—without having the benefit of input from any substantive witness—there appears to me to be very significant grounds for such an action."
Others also dismissed the report, noting that a recount and investigations were conducted multiple times. According to the Associated Press, despite the recounts, multiple state and federal lawsuits, an audit by the nonpartisan Legislative Audit Bureau, and a report by the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, it was found that Biden defeated Trump by a little under 21,000 votes in Wisconsin.
“There does not appear to be anything new in this report, although it is apparent that Michael Gableman is adopting the most fringe and extreme arguments presented by election deniers,” Attorney Jeffrey Mandell, who is representing the mayor of Green Bay in a lawsuit opposing a subpoena from Gableman, said. “This report, and Mr. Gableman’s presentation, is an embarrassment. This process needs to come to a quick end.”
An Associated Press review of Wisconsin and other battleground states also found far too little fraud to have tipped the election for Trump.
Of course, there are other controversies found in connection with the report. A review conducted by the Associated Press found that the report was paid for with $676,000 in taxpayer money. Additionally, it was due at the end of last year but delayed after mayors and state and local election officials filed multiple lawsuits to block subpoenas issued to them. During his presentation, Gableman said he had spent about $360,000 so far on the investigation and issued 90 subpoenas, but no one with information about how elections are run has spoken with him.
During the presentation, Gableman not only criticized the process of voting in nursing homes but attacked the use of drop boxes. He recommended changes in voting procedures including shortening the early voting period and dismantling the bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission.
Overall Gableman said he hoped the report’s recommendations would be used by lawmakers to enact changes before the session ends next month.
Despite the lack of support for his findings, he even went as far as to suggest that his work continue, as he still has funds remaining in his budget. "I'm not in this for anything other than the truth,” he claimed.
According to CBS News, Gableman was appointed by Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos in June 2021. Gableman's appointment came a day after Trump issued a statement saying that Vos and other Wisconsin Republican leaders were "working hard to cover up election corruption."
"I'd like to thank the Office of Special Counsel for their tireless efforts in finding the truth," Vos said in a statement. "They've done a good job at showing there were issues in 2020, and the report is intended to help correct these processes for future elections."
House Republicans are demanding transcripts of a call between President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky about a possible Russian invasion of the country be released after disputed reports over the substance of the conversation.
CNN initially reported that a senior Ukrainian official described the talk between Biden and Zelensky as “long and frank” but that it “did not go well.”
CNN reporter Alexander Marquardt, late Thursday, tweeted alarming quotes provided by the Ukrainian official.
“A Russian invasion is now virtually certain once the ground freezes, Biden said to Zelensky, a senior Ukrainian official told [CNN reporter Matthew Chance],” he wrote.
“Kyiv could be ‘sacked,’ Russian forces may attempt to occupy it, ‘prepare for impact’, Biden said, according to this official.”
A Russian invasion is now virtually certain once the ground freezes, Biden said to Zelensky, a senior Ukrainian official told @mchancecnn. Kyiv could be “sacked,” Russian forces may attempt to occupy it, “prepare for impact”, Biden said, according to this official.
— Alexander Marquardt (@MarquardtA) January 27, 2022
Release The Biden Transcript
The characterization of the phone call was immediately disputed by the White House and the Ukrainian government, according to Newsweek.
National Security Council spokesperson Emily Horne described the CNN report based on a Ukrainian official’s comments as “completely false.”
This is not true. President Biden said that there is a distinct possibility that the Russians could invade Ukraine in February. He has previously said this publicly & we have been warning about this for months. Reports of anything more or different than that are completely false. https://t.co/chkFOhwWHn
— Emily Horne (@emilyhorne46) January 27, 2022
Horne would later tell CNN that “anonymous sources are ‘leaking’ falsehoods.”
A spokesman for Zelensky also posted to Facebook that the accounts were “completely false.”
A readout of the call on the White House website makes no mention of any dire warnings to Ukraine, instead indicating that Biden “reaffirmed” to Zelensky that the United States would “respond decisively if Russia further invades Ukraine.”
House Republicans though, challenged the White House to clear the air by demanding they release the actual transcript of the call.
They added a video of Biden in 2019 calling on then-President Trump to “release the transcript of the call” between him and Zelensky, a call that led to the former president’s first impeachment in 2019.
— House Republicans (@HouseGOP) January 28, 2022
Experts Warn Of Nuclear War
The hashtag ‘#ReleaseTheTranscript’ began trending and was the number one leading topic on Twitter Friday morning.
Releasing the transcript of Biden’s call with Zelensky seems like a logical step. The last thing all parties involved need is reckless and possibly false comments by the President escalating tensions with nuclear-armed Russia.
BREAKING: We have recovered the Ukraine call report that @JakeTapper and CNN just deleted
Please DO NOT RT this as they do not want anyone to see it! pic.twitter.com/vV67Jc1p7i
— Release The Poso (@JackPosobiec) January 28, 2022
The controversy comes as experts are warning of a nuclear exchange should Russia and the U.S. come to blows.
“As Russian troops bear down on Ukraine and the United States prepares its own military buildup in Eastern Europe, concerns are growing across the ideological spectrum that the standoff could inadvertently escalate into the unthinkable: nuclear war,” Politico reports.
The column cites “current and former officials and experts on both sides of the Atlantic” who worry about ‘miscalculations’ and ‘stumbling into nuclear confrontation.’
— Jenna Ellis (@JennaEllisEsq) January 28, 2022
Is there anything at stake here that could justify even the remote chance of nuclear war?
Shortly after Biden was sworn into office, dozens of House Democrats quietly called on President Biden to relinquish sole control over the country’s nuclear arsenal and the ability to launch a strike using those weapons.
Nearly three dozen House Democrats on Monday called on Biden to relinquish his sole authority to launch nuclear weapons, in the latest appeal to reform the command-and-control structure so that no single person can initiate a nuclear war https://t.co/AOIHaYf1b4 pic.twitter.com/OSKJ64d3cW
— POLITICO (@politico) February 23, 2021
The movement stalled.
General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, assured House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that in the waning days of the Trump presidency, a President couldn’t launch a nuclear attack alone.
— The Hill (@thehill) July 15, 2021
The State Department in November said “all options are on the table and there’s a toolkit that includes a whole range of options” in how to respond to Russia’s troop buildup near Ukraine’s border.
The post House GOP Demands Release Of Biden-Ukraine Transcript Following Reports Call ‘Did Not Go Well’ appeared first on The Political Insider.