Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) dared U.S. Capitol police to arrest him and his staffers for refusing to wear masks.
The Kentucky Republican reacted to a letter from Capitol police chief Thomas Manger notifying officers they must enforce a mask order inside the halls of Congress for all legislators, staffers and visitors, although he specifically says they should not arrest lawmakers who refuse.
"Although this applies to Members of Congress, officers should not arrest any Member for failure to wear a mask or comply with the mask mandate," Manger said the letter. "Any member who fails to comply with a request to wear a mask should be reported to the House Sergeant at Arms' office."
Massie, however, may not have read the entire letter, which was posted online by Rep. Kat Cammach (R-FL).
"This is INSANE," Massie tweeted. "Might as well come into my office and arrest my entire staff. We are not wearing masks. I support the Capitol Hill Police, but the Chief of Police made a mistake here. The physician and the chief of police don't have this authority."
Massie is among a group of GOP lawmakers, including Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Ralph Norman (R-SC), who have sued House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) over $500 fines levied for their refusal to follow the mask order recommended by the House physician.
Dr. Faisal Khan endured a torrent of racial and xenophobic slurs from a raucous crowd gathered at a St. Louis County Council meeting Tuesday night to protest a new mask mandate.
So, Khan, the St. Louis County health director, did what so many others only dream of doing: He gave one of the MAGA-style protesters a good, old-fashioned middle finger as he exited the meeting.
Here's what Khan wrote to the County Council Wednesday detailing his experience at its meeting:
"After my presentation was completed, I tried to leave the chamber but was confronted by several people who were in the aisle. On more than one occasion, I was shoulder-bumped and pushed.
"As I approached the exit and immediately outside the chambers, I became surrounded by the crowd in close quarters, where members of the crowd yelled at me, calling me a "fat brown cunt" and a "brown bastard." After being physically assaulted, called racist slurs, and surrounded by an angry mob, I expressed my displeasure by using my middle finger toward an individual who had physically threatened me and called me racist slurs."
Khan wrote that he was also accosted during the meeting by the angry overflow crowd gathered to protest a new mask mandate issued by County Executive Sam Page. Khan said there was no mistaking the crowd:
"The great majority of the people in the raucous crowd appeared to be from the "MAGA" movement, as evidenced by their "Trump 2024" chants," Khan wrote. "The MAGA movement is well-known for xenophobia and discriminatory treatment of racial minorities and has engaged in violent acts against government institutions like in our nation's capital on January 6."
Sitting in the front row was attorney Mark McCloskey, who drew national attention -- and MAGA acclaim -- when he and his wife Patricia aimed firearms at peaceful protesters passing by his St. Louis (on the way to the mayor's house) during the George Floyd protests. McCloskey, who wound up speaking at the GOP convention in 2020, is one of four Trump-loving Republicans vying for the U.S. Senate seat to be vacated by Sen. Roy Blunt in 2022.
Khan said McCloskey and another GOP politician "consistently berated me and tried to distract me from my presentation" as he was attempting to explain the health rationale for the mandate. Khan, who became an American citizen in 2013, also wrote to the Council about other xenophobic insults during his remarks.
"Several audience members then started mocking my accent while I was presenting to the Council. I heard people doing their impersonation of Apu, a caricature character from The Simpsons television show that mocks people from South Asia such as myself," Khan wrote.
The Republicans claimed Khan's claims were "baseless" and politically motivated. Page, meanwhile, said the abuse of Khan is troubling and under investigation. The behavior he has detailed is shameful and cannot be tolerated."
The County Council voted 5-2 to rescind the mask mandate. The matter is likely headed to court.
Investigation into St. Louis County health director after using obscene gesture www.youtube.com
According to Forbes, Thomas Robertson, an accused Capitol rioter and former Virginia police officer, has been ordered by a federal judge to remain in jail pending trial — because he ignored a judge's order not to stockpile guns.
"Robertson was initially released from jail in January, but federal authorities allege he violated a judge's order to avoid possessing firearms on pretrial release and broke a federal law barring people under felony indictment from shipping firearms," reported Joe Walsh. "Federal officials said Robertson made arrangements to buy guns and ammunition online just weeks after he was ordered to get rid of all his firearms, and by June, some 34 guns were awaiting his pickup at a local firearm broker. The Federal Bureau of Investigation also searched Robertson's home last month and found an M4 rifle, several containers of ammunition and a "partially assembled pipe bomb," according to a court filing by federal prosecutors."
Per earlier reports, Robertson also allegedly made posts advocating violence on GunBroker.com, the website where he purchased some of the guns.
"They are trying to teach us a lesson. They have. But its definitely not the intended lesson," he wrote. "I have learned that if you peacefully protest than you will be arrested, fired, be put on a no fly list, have your name smeared and address released by the FBI so every loon in the US can send you hate mail. I have learned very well that if you dip your toe into the Rubicon. . . . cross it. Cross it hard and violent and play for all the marbles."
Robertson was sent back to jail earlier this month to await Judge Christopher Cooper's decision on whether he violated the terms of his pretrial release.
The report comes as the first of the Capitol riot trials are beginning to wrap up, with some participants already being sentenced; Paul Hodgkins, who stormed the Senate floor with a "Trump 2020" flag, was given eight months.
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