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Leaked video: Republican senator supported Iraq war so he could spread Mormonism to the Middle East

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It seems as though at least one Republican senator took Ann Coulter’s post-9/11 recommendation to invade Muslim countries, “kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity” seriously.

Via the Las Vegas Review Journal, a newly leaked video shows former Sen. Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) telling Mormon church leaders that he had a higher purpose when he voted in favor of the war in Iraq back in 2002.

“I know and have been a critic of the Iraq war, but I also admit to you that I voted for it because I felt the Lord’s hand in it,” Smith said. “I hope it works out, but I can promise you this: You’ll never send missionaries to the Arab street until the rule of law exists in Arabia, and it has taken root in Iraq. And ultimately, if that succeeds, there will be an opportunity to begin building the church in the Middle East, which is a deeply troubled place.”

To his credit, Smith was one of the few Republicans who harshly criticized the Bush administration’s conduct of the Iraq war early on, and he even voted for a resolution in 2007 whose aim was to withdraw combat troops from Iraq.

Nonetheless, his initial support for the war based on the rationale that it would spread Mormonism likely won’t help him revive any ambitions he has to hold political office in the future.

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Check out the full video below — Smith starts talking about his support for the Iraq war at around 13:15.

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Dershowitz and Trump should both be worried what Jeffrey Epstein will reveal when he looks to cut a deal: ex-prosecutor

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On Saturday, Georgetown Law professor and former federal prosecutor Paul Butler discussed the Jeffrey Epstein sex trafficking case with MSNBC's Joy Reid, and the conversation turned to Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz's increasingly furious battle with David Boies, a prominent lawyer representing some of Epstein's alleged victims. Dershowitz has been accused by one of the women of also abusing her at one of Epstein's parties, a claim he categorically denies.

"I've had sex with one woman since the day I met Jeffrey Epstein," said Dershowitz in a Fox News clip Reid played for her viewers. "I challenge David Boies to say under oath that he's only had sex with one woman during that same period of time, he couldn't do it. So he has an enormous amount of chutzpah to attack me and to challenge my perfect, perfect sex life during the relevant period of time."

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2020 Election

Do politicians actually care about your opinions? This researcher says no

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Earlier this month, a New York Times op-ed written by two political science professors, Ethan Porter of George Washington University and Joshua Kalla of Yale, discussed their troubling research findings: State legislators, the two claim, don't much care about the opinions of their constituents, even if they're given detailed data regarding their views.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Black Georgia lawmaker accuses white man of demanding she ‘go back where she came from’ in supermarket diatribe

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On Friday evening, Erica Thomas, and African-American Democratic lawmaker in the Georgia House of Representatives, was shopping at a Publix supermarket in Mableton when a white customer came up to her and shouted at her, telling her to "go back where you came from" — words echoing President Donald Trump's recent racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color.

Thomas' crime? She had too many items for the express checkout line.

Today I was verbally assaulted in the grocery store by a white man who told me I was a lazy SOB and to go back to where I came from bc I had to many items in the express lane. My husband wasn’t there to defend me because he is on Active Duty serving the country I came from USA!

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