I'm writing for this week's TPM Cafe book club, which is about Eric Boehlert's Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press. Should be fun---word is that they even got Atrios to agree to join in, as he's a major character in the book. (Pandagon plays a minor role, especially as ground zero for the "Tweety Effect" meme spreading.)
In a new moment of anti-bipartisanship, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy came out against the Jan. 6 Commission rules and organization structure after spending months helping write them.
Speaking to Rev. Al Sharpton on Sunday, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) said that McCarthy has been helping work on the rules, negotiate the commission and even sent any edits or recommendations in writing. Now, out of the blue, McCarthy opposes what he helped pen.
"Well, I can tell you this, Rev., Leader McCarthy along with every other leader in Congress, was kept informed on a daily basis as to what was going on," said the Congressman. "He even made suggestions as to what we needed to do if we needed his support in the bill. We accepted his suggestions and moved on. So, I can't really understand why, at the last moment, he would say that. I'm looking forward to voting on it this week. I look forward to having strong Republican support for this commission bill."
Rev. Sharpton was confused. "You and those that work along with you had consistent contact throughout the process with Mr. McCarthy. He even made recommendations, and now he's coming with a totally opposite point of view, point of contention even after he participated all the way through this process?"
Rep. Thompson agreed with the assessment, noting he didn't quite understand it.
See the interview below:
Kevin McCarthy now hates the rules he wrote www.youtube.com
GOP lies about Jan. 6 are the beginning of a three-part plan that's worse than al Qaeda: ex-Breitbart staffer
Amid the conversation of the downfall of the Republican Party, former Breitbart staffer Kurt Bardella explained that the GOP, as an organization, is just as complicit.
Speaking to MSNBC on Sunday about the ousting of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Republicans attempting to rewrite the history of Jan. 6, Bardella predicted that it is only going to get worse as the party goes all-in on the "big lie."
He noted that through the 2000s, the Republicans were all about fighting terrorism, patriotism, war and protecting America from those abroad. Now it has taken a 180-degree turn toward promoting terrorism.
"In reality, the threat that we are facing right now at home in our own backyard from one of the two major political parties in this country has put democracy on its edge," he explained. "We are teetering very, very close right now. I don't think people realize what's happening. But what we have seen now is a Republican Party that, even on the day of the insurrection that night, went back into the chambers of Congress and voted against approving a free and fair election. This is a three-part play that we're seeing right now. Act one was the November election.
"Act two is the 2022 midterms," he continued. "And if Republicans somehow get control of one of two chambers of Congress, I guarantee you in 2024, if they don't like the results of the election, they will not certify them and they will create a Constitutional crisis, the likes of which we have never seen — putting democracy on edge and under threat in a way that it never was during the attacks of al Qaeda, during everything that we experienced in the 2000s. All of the alarmist rhetoric we heard from Republicans about terror and war and terrorism, well, guess what? The threat we are seeing right now from the Republican party is far bigger than any of that."
He went on to explain that after watching Republicans pretend like Jan. 6 was "patriots" or "tourists," is really only the beginning of the next steps of the GOP plan.
"What you're going to see is when you have one of the two political parties make excuses, apologize, rewrite history for the violent insurrection effort on January 6th, you're going to see more of that," said Bardella. "When the Republican Party sits up in a congressional hearing like they did this week and say, 'Oh, it was just like any kind of tourist day,' you're telling these people to keep doing it, to do it more, to get more violent because the Republican Party will run cover for you. They are the getaway driver for these democratic arsonists."
See the full video below:
three part plan from the GOP to takeover and destroy America www.youtube.com
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) plans to speak at a rally in Mesa, Arizona on Friday, but there's a question of what his former wingman Joel Greenberg intends to say to prosecutors in his plea agreement.
Greenberg has likely already given all of the information he has to prosecutors and investigators. The paperwork for his guilty plea is already filed, but on Monday, he'll officially plead guilty to six crimes in court. MSNBC host Yasmin Vossoughian quoted Gaetz at a Republican retreat over the weekend, denying that he ever took money for "naughty favors." Gaetz claimed that the real crimes are members who take favors for votes, a.k.a. earmarks.
Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner told MSNBC on Sunday that it was "obscene" to equate sex trafficking of a minor as nothing more than a "naughty favor." It was even worse to compare it to normal practice in government.
"That's Matt Gaetz announcing, 'Sure, you may have caught me doing all sorts of stuff wrong, but you know what, Congress does stuff wrong all the time, including earmarks,'" Kirschner said. "That could be turned on its head and viewed as an admission of guilt, but we'll have to see how the prosecutors choose to play that. It looks like based on the Greenberg plea agreement, which is something I never saw in my 30 years as a prosecutor, I think the prosecutors are going to have sort of an embarrassment of riches when it comes to criminal conduct of others."
While serving as a prosecutor, Kirschner explained that when he was working with someone who might become a cooperating witness, they would limit the immunity until it was clear what information they had.
"Everything they tell us about the criminal activity of others, we go out and investigate," he explained. "We see if we can corroborate to make sure that the aspiring cooperator is telling us the truth. And if the information is really blockbuster, for example, if that aspiring cooperator can give us significantly bigger fish on the criminal food chain, then we might make them a generous plea offer. I've never seen one quite so generous as somebody who's charged with 33 federal felony counts and he's permitted to plead guilty to just six and the prosecutors will dismiss 27 points."
He went on to say that of the 86 pages in the plea agreement, "I saw all of the receipts."
He then read a key piece of the indictment that he picked out that should "send shudders through anyone who was involved in doing dirt with Joel Greenberg.
On page 30, he explained, prosecutors wrote, "'Greenberg also introduced the minor to other adult men,' plural, 'who engaged in commercial sex acts with the minor in the middle district of Florida.'"
"Boy, it looks like they have the receipts on those other men," said Kirschner. "They haven't named them yet, but I have a feeling we're going to learn who they are very soon, and one of them may very well be Matt Gaetz."
See the comments in the video below:
Matt Gaetz www.youtube.com
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