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Cheney is fighting ‘gutter Trumpism’ as GOP candidates vow to violate their oaths of office: columnist
GOP Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming is effectively using her position on the Jan. 6 select committee to battle Donald Trump for the future of the Republican Party in America, according to a new analysis published by The Washington Post.
"As Rep. Liz Cheney’s case against Donald Trump grows ever more damning, it has produced a truly bizarre split-screen moment. Cheney’s indictment of the former president amounts to one of the most consequential and effective public performances in recent U.S. history," columnist Greg Sargent wrote. "Cheney amplified her case against Trump at a primary debate on Thursday night. Cheney heaped scorn on her leading challenger, Trump-backed Harriet Hageman, slamming her for fealty to Trump’s lies about the 2020 election and urging GOP voters to leave Trump behind once and for all."
On Wednesday, Cheney received a standing ovation after calling out GOP leaders during a speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.
"Cheney will likely lose her primary, perhaps by enormous margins. But her performance in the primary — along with her speech this week casting Trump as a “domestic threat” — represent something forward-looking, a plea to the Republican Party to break with Trump’s madness for the sake of the country and its future," Sargent wrote. "The insurrectionist spirit afoot in the Trump movement and the GOP more broadly must be fundamentally renounced by any party that claims to be an actor in a liberal democracy. This is truly what lies at the core of Cheney’s dispute with the rest of the GOP."
He noted that all across America, GOP election deniers are running for office on explicit promises to violate their oaths of office and overturn elections.
"The hearings are demonstrating that Trump and his fellow coup-plotters knowingly schemed to hold power illegitimately or illegally; that the plot was multifaceted and premeditated; that it relied on extraordinary corruption, mob violence and extensive complicity from the GOP; and that, at its core, it was about ending American democracy," Sargent wrote. "How far down the path to democratic instability this will take us remains to be seen. Cheney plainly believes — and this view is alarmingly shared by experts in democratic breakdown — that unless Republicans execute a fundamental turnaround, there may not be any route back."
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., recently alleged that a bogus slate of pro-Trump electors, which one of his aide's tried to have former Vice President Mike Pence install during the 2020 election certification ceremony, was given to him by Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Penn. But Kelly is again adamantly denying his fellow Republican's claims.
"I have never had a conversation with Sen. Johnson," Kelly said in a Thursday interview with New Castle News.
Johnson's allegation came during a radio interview last month on the "The Vicki McKenna Show," according to audio captured by Democratic Super PAC American Bridge. In the interview, Johnson attacked the January 6 select committee for revealing text messages between Johnson Chief of Staff Sean Riley and one of Pence's legislative aides, who Riley asked to hand off a slate of partisan electors to the former vice president.
"We found out now this [slate] came from Pennsylvania Congressman Mike Kelly's office," Johnson claimed.
Johnson also referenced a Just the News report alleging that Donald Trump had enlisted the help of Kelly's office to gin up a cohort of new electors who would be willing to overturn President Biden's win. According to the report, Kelly asked for help from Wisconsin lawyer James Troupit, then a Trump campaign counsel. Troupit was also one of the leading attorneys in a legal challenge against Trump's loss in the Badger State, as Politico noted.
"Need to get a document on Wisconsin electors to you the VP immediately," Troupis reportedly texted Johnson at 11:36 a.m. on January 6. "Is there a staff person I can talk to immediately. Thanks, Jim T."
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Shortly thereafter, Riley reportedly texted the Pence aide, "Johnson needs to hand something to VPOTUS." Pence's aide refused the offering, the texts indicate.
Johnson, for his part, has called the entire affair a "non-story."
"My office's entire involvement in this thing lasted 70 minutes. My involvement was probably seconds, maybe a minute or two," he said, according to Politico.
Still, his latest denial passes the buck over to Kelly, who up until this point was not directly implicated in Trump's failed scheme to replace the 2020 election's duly-appointed cohort of electors.
Kelly's press secretary, Matt Knoedler, first denied Johnson's claims.
"Senator Johnson's statements about Representative Kelly are patently false," Knoedler told Insider. "Mr. Kelly has not spoken to Sen. Johnson for the better part of a decade, and he has no knowledge of the claims Mr. Johnson is making related to the 2020 election.
Then this week, Kelly spoke for himself.
"I think that there have been several variations of what the senator said," Kelly noted in reference to Johnson. "But I've had no conversation with him at all."
Chair goes flying through the air as Oakland school board votes against reopening schools for the third time
California's Oakland school board voted this Wednesday 4-2 to keep schools closed, rejecting a resolution from parents calling on school to reopen in the wake of statewide closures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, KTVU reports.
The board's vote came after two and a half hours of an emotional public comment and a presentation by parents who want schools to reopen.
"I'm justifiably upset there was no listening. They knew coming in what they were going to say, what they were going to do," said parent Holly Shogbesan.
The meeting was then adjourned when a chair was thrown towards the stage where board members were sitting.
As KTVU points out, this is third time the board has rejected the reopening of schools. This debate is in regards to 10 public schools that have either been already closed or scheduled for closure next year.
"I'm very upset but not surprised. I have fought against school closures for a long time. The last thing I ever imagined is I would be sitting on a school board and have my colleagues on the board not listen to the community and vote to close community school when we have money to keep our schools open," said school board member Michael Hutchinson.
Watch KTVU's report on the story below.
Oakland school board rejects resolution to save schools from closure www.youtube.com