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More details continue to emerge about the Trump-Pence administration.
The watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) said new documents show then-VP Mike Pence showed "bad judgment" during the coronavirus pandemic.
"While coronavirus cases surged to record levels late last December, Vice President Mike Pence went on a ski vacation in Vail, Colorado. The trip came with a massive bill to taxpayers, with Secret Service protection alone costing $757,527.85, according to documents obtained by CREW. At the time of his holiday travel, Pence was the head of the White House coronavirus task force, which put out dire warnings after Thanksgiving as the CDC recommended that Americans stay home over the holidays in order to limit the spread of the virus. Clearly, Pence did not follow the government's advice, and in the process put dozens of Secret Service agents at heightened risk of infection," the group said on Thursday.
"Pence's trip extended from December 23rd to January 1st, and reportedly included a Secret Service entourage of at least 48 agents, contributing to both the high cost and the risk of infection.The agents stayed at several different hotels in the Vail area and rented 77 cars for the trip. The charges included more than $270,000 at the Marriott Vail Mountain and more than $80,000 at the Ritz Carlton," the group reported.
"This also is not the first time Mike Pence stuck taxpayers with huge bills for his travel. Back in 2019, he traveled to Ireland for government business in Dublin, but stayed overnight at Donald Trump's resort on the other side of the country in Doonbeg. Travel costs for that were more than half a million dollars, and also resulted in the Secret Service spending more than $15,000 at Trump's resort," the group noted. "While Pence's December trip to Vail was less nakedly corrupt than his trip to Doonbeg, it showed another kind of bad judgment, by putting many government workers tasked with keeping him safe at risk in the midst of a raging pandemic. We would hope that the head of the coronavirus task force would know better."
NEW: Then-VP Mike Pence went on a ski trip in late December, when COVID rates were surging and the CDC recommended… https://t.co/BApS4VESYM— Noah Bookbinder (@Noah Bookbinder)1619129100.0
Andrew Yang tried to get an LGBTQ group’s endorsement so he talked about wanting to visit a lesbian bar: NYT
Former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, who was a surprising breakout success but suffered criticisms about "tone," and continues to, is running to become New York City's next mayor. He's currently the frontrunner in the very early race but once again, as The New York Times reports, his inability to build support among minority groups is hurting him.
Yang spoke to the Stonewall Democratic Club of New York City, a top LGBTQ organization, on Wednesday.
"It did not go particularly well," the Times reports.
Yang's approach and the way he treated LGBTQ people was seen as "outdated," according to Stonewall's president, Rose Christ.
"Yang cited gay members of his staff as apparent evidence of his openness to the club's concerns, and expressed enthusiasm about the prospect of visiting Cubbyhole, a storied New York lesbian bar, participants said," the Times reveals.
"He proactively talked about resurrecting the city's Pride March, but failed to pay sufficient heed to more substantive issues they were actually concerned about, including homelessness and affordable housing, they said."
“When I see a candidate come in just with Michael Scott levels of cringe and insensitivity, it either tells me Andrew Yang is in over his head or is not listening to his staff," said Alejandra Caraballo, a member of the organization, referring to the character played by Steve Carell on “The Office." “Those are both radioactive flashing signs that say he is not prepared to be mayor of New York."
Yang also repeatedly referred to LGBTQ people as a "community," telling members of the Stonewall Democratic Club how much he cares about "your community."
“I genuinely do love you and your community," Yang told members. “You're so human and beautiful. You make New York City special. I have no idea how we ever lose to the Republicans given that you all are frankly in, like, leadership roles all over the Democratic Party."
Filmmaker and Stonewall member Harris Doran said Yang “kept calling us 'Your community,' like we were aliens."
“We have, like, this incredible secret weapon," Yang also said. “It's not even secret. It's like, we should win everything because we have you all."
“Gay, gay, gay. Wow," one person wrote in the chat accompanying the forum, which was later shared with The New York Times. “More to us than just that."
'You can have boot licker Matt Gaetz — I’ll take Liz Cheney in a bar fight any day’: Ex-GOP official
A shocking expose in the New York Times revealed Thursday how wounded Republican men were when Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) stood up to former President Donald Trump. It began with caucus meeting in which Republicans decided not to punish Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) for her first act that humiliated the GOP. The group then voted whether to keep Cheney in her leadership position, which she won, but only after male members whined about how emotional they felt that Cheney acted without consulting them.
Former Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA) walked through some of the battles happening on the ground in his state between the GOP and the far right.
"You know, first, there's just -- the data is there to say that stop the steal or election integrity is still the number one issue in republican circles by 25 to 30 points," said Riggleman. "Here in Virginia, you just saw Mike Flynn endorse one of the top candidates here, Amanda Chase, and that's going to help her a lot as she goes forward."
But then Riggleman explained that if he had to choose between Cheney and someone like Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), he'd pick Cheney any day of the week.
"When you're talking about Liz Cheney, I don't know if you know this, but I was a bouncer," the Republican confessed. "I know it's hard to believe now but I was a bouncer back in the day, and I want to make a comparison here. You usually identify somebody in that environment, the guy or the gal who's going to sit next to you in a bar fight. Liz Cheney's going to be there whether the odds look bad or good. She's going to be the one next to you in a bar fight. I like defiant. I like somebody who thinks truth and facts are the things you need to stand on and I think if you're in that bar fight, looking at the type of people that you have, I think Liz would be shoulder to shoulder with me when I was trying to get a bad person out of there. I think the people like Matt Gaetz, they're going to look for the nearest spring breakers and go hide behind them. That's the difference. I'll take Liz Cheney in a bar fight every day and you can have the Matt Gaetzs and all those individuals and if you have people in Congress saying she's defiant or saying, 'Oh my goodness, she wasn't humble enough? the issue is that you had a lot of wrong people standing on the shoulders of stupidity when it came to stop the steal and I think it's ridiculous you have individuals saying she's defiant when she's talking about the constitution and I'll take defiant over boot-lickers any day."
MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace mentioned former GOP Speaker John Boehner (OH) and asked if there is still a concern that the Republican Party has lost its soul.
"I think so. I mean, I've had a difficult time identifying as a Republican here in Virginia specifically," said Riggleman. "And you know, some of the story, Nicole, when you talk about conspiracy theories, you know the things that happened to me where I was accused of being funded by George Soros to change the sexual orientation of children after I had officiated a same-sex wedding and that's when it started for me."
He went on: "You can take integrity out of it. If they want to get elected, they got to roll with what the Republican committees are saying and what the GOP constituents are saying and that's what scares me, the disinformation is pervasive, it's very difficult for people like me and people trying to say, listen, please come back to the light here, please come out of the rabbit hole, because what's happening is you have grifters just taking your money and leading you down a wrong path, and I hope that we can get our arms around it right now it doesn't look that great for the GOP right now when it comes to those type of individuals."
See the video below:
'You can have boot licker Matt Gaetz — I'll take Liz Cheney in a bar fight any day' www.youtube.com
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