'I prefer really not to comment': GOP lawmakers ducking questions about 'sleazeball' Matt Gaetz's future
According to a report from the Daily Beast's Matt Fuller, very few House Republicans are willing to go on the record about the multiple investigations swirling around Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), with the exception of a few who reside on the extreme rightwing fringe of the party.
With Gaetz courting controversy on an almost daily basis -- including now taking on the Pentagon -- House members confronted about the allegations he has been paying underaged girls for sex are unwilling to talk about him.
According to Fuller, "... all around Gaetz, members of Congress—Democrats and Republicans—are pretending nothing is wrong, that their colleague isn't credibly accused of paying for sex with a minor, " adding, "More broadly on the GOP side, the affected ignorance is stunning. When The Daily Beast asked Republicans about Gaetz staying on his committees, the usually talkative Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) sharply said he didn't have any comment to make about Gaetz 'one way or the other.'"
Reps. Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC), David Schweikert (R-AZ), and Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN) also begged off, with Fleischmann remarking, "That's something that every member of Congress has to deal with on an individual level, so I prefer really not to comment. I have not followed that situation."
One lawmaker willing to go on the record is Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) who backed Gaetz remaining in his committee posts and dismissed questions about his future saying he doesn't see anything controversial about his remaining while the investigations continue.
One GOP lawmaker, who didn't want their name used, claimed no one is comfortable talking about Gaetz, with Fuller reporting, "we would be hard-pressed to find any 'sane member of the conference' who would defend Gaetz.
Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA), on the other hand, had no problem talking about the Florida Republican bluntly stating, "It's embarrassing. It just degrades the entire institution and confirms the worst perceptions people have of Congress and politicians, when a schmuck like that continues to hold the office and sit in a committee room," before adding Gaetz is a "world-class sleazeball."
"I have no doubt that he will not be in Congress for long," he added.
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The International Brotherhood of Teamsters on Thursday said it will fund a project aimed at unionizing workers at technology and e-commerce colossus Amazon.
The powerful labor group, which has some 1.4 million members, vowed to use its resources to rally Amazon workers, the community, and regulators in the effort.
"Amazon presents a massive threat to working-class communities and good jobs in the logistics industry," Teamsters national director Randy Korgan said in a statement.
"Amazon workers face dehumanizing, unsafe and low-pay jobs, with high turnover and no voice at work."
A resolution passed by Teamsters delegates stated that the labor group would fully fund and support an "Amazon Project" with all resources necessary to succeed.
"Amazon workers are calling for safer and better working conditions and with today's resolution we are activating the full force of our union to support them," Korgan said.
The move comes following a failed unionization drive at an Amazon warehouse in the southern US state of Alabama failed in April, with a wide majority of workers rejecting the move.
Unions and political leaders have argued that employees at Amazon -- which has some 800,000 US workers -- face constant pressure and monitoring, with little job protection, highlighting the need for collective bargaining.
Amazon has argued that most of its workers don't want or need a union and that it already provides more than most other employers, with a minimum $15 hourly wage and other benefits.
The Teamsters support for a Project Amazon came as US lawmakers advanced blockbuster legislation Thursday aimed at curbing the power of Big Tech firms with a sweeping reform of antitrust laws, setting the stage for a tough floor fight in Congress.
Actors Samuel L Jackson and Danny Glover, Norwegian actress Liv Ullmann and actress-director Elaine May will receive honorary Oscars ahead of the main 2022 gala, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Thursday.
Jackson, May and Ullmann will be given honorary statuettes, while Glover will receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Governors Awards on January 15, the Academy said in a statement.
"We are thrilled to present this year's Governors Awards to four honorees who have had a profound impact on both film and society," said Academy President David Rubin.
Glover, 74, first earned widespread recognition on the big screen in Steven Spielberg's adaptation of "The Color Purple" (1985) before starring opposite Mel Gibson in the popular "Lethal Weapon" cop buddy movies.
"Danny Glover's decades-long advocacy for justice and human rights reflects his dedication to recognizing our shared humanity on and off the screen," Rubin said.
Jackson, 72, has appeared in dozens of films, earning an Oscar nomination for his indelible turn in Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction" (1994).
He has appeared in multiple Marvel movies as the eyepatch-wearing onetime SHIELD boss Nick Fury, wielded a lightsaber in the "Star Wars" universe as Jedi master Mace Windu, and delivered an unforgettable line in "Snakes on a Plane."
Ullmann, 82, was introduced to international audiences in Ingmar Bergman's "Persona" and would go on to make many films with the Swedish director. She earned two Oscar nominations for best actress in the 1970s.
Rubin said her "bravery and emotional transparency has gifted audiences with deeply affecting screen portrayals."
May, 89, achieved great success through her comedy partnership with Mike Nichols before going on to earn Oscar nominations for writing the screenplays for "Heaven Can Wait" and "Primary Colors."
She also directed several films including "A New Leaf," "The Heartbreak Kid" and "Ishtar."
"Elaine May's bold, uncompromising approach to filmmaking, as a writer, director and actress, reverberates as loudly as ever with movie lovers," Rubin said.
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