The WWE universe has lost one of its most cherished members as Bobby “The Brain” Heenan has tragically passed away at age 72. The news of Bobby "The Brain" Heenan's passing today gutted me. I loved our time together. No one ever did it better than the Wease. — Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) September 17, 2017 Heenan…
Leaders of the conservative movement in America are echoing Donald Trump by using violent rhetoric to enrage their base, according to a new analysis in The Washington Post.
"During his five-plus years as a politician and president before Jan. 6, 2021, Donald Trump repeatedly and suggestively alluded to the prospect of violence by his supporters. Then it happened. Those supporters took the hint and stormed the U.S. Capitol, intent on overturning a democratic election on the basis of false claims that it had been stolen from them," Aaron Blake wrote.
He noted that Trump was impeached for inciting insurrection.
"Trump was acquitted despite the fact that many high-profile Republicans had preemptively warned Trump's violent rhetoric could one day lead to just such a scene. Despite it all, nearly 10 months after Jan. 6, suggestions of legitimized violence continue to permeate the GOP and the conservative movement. Trump has faded into the background somewhat, thanks to his social-media bans and being out of office, but others have gladly picked up the torch, with almost no pushback from their party leadership," he wrote.
He noted recent comments by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) likening the assault on the Capitol to the Declaration of Independence.
"Greene's comment reflects how some Republicans like her spoke about Jan. 6 beforehand. As The Post reported at the time, several Republicans had compared the situation to 1776 and otherwise suggested the necessity of violence. These were not allusions to peaceful efforts to overturn an election; they were about armed revolution," Blake explained. "But while the fervor understandably died down for a while, you needn't look far to see this kind of rhetoric continuing to rear its ugly head. Trumpian allusions to the prospect and even necessity of political violence and a 1776-esque revolution are coming up with increasing frequency."
Blake also called out rhetoric by Reps. Mo Brooks (R-AL), Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), Matt Gaetz (R-FL), and Louie Gohmert (R-TX). He also listed violent rhetoric by Fox News personality Tucker Carlson and OAN host Pearson Sharp.
"While we should never oversell anecdotes, we probably shouldn't ignore it when an activist earnestly asks a leader of the young conservative movement in public, as one did this week, 'When do we get to use the guns?' Despite the lessons of Jan. 6, key members of the conservative movement are still wandering around that tinderbox with a lit match and nary a fire extinguisher to be found," Blake concluded.
Absolute calamity at the U.S. Capitol. Smoke bombs, tear gas and people infiltrating the building. 30 mins ago some… https://t.co/zDVYg6f5pP— Michael Brice-Saddler (@Michael Brice-Saddler) 1609965077.0
Big group of Proud Boys and others just arrived at the Capitol. Some shouting “Storm the Capitol!” and “1776!” https://t.co/ws9ItWy7c1— Hannah Allam (@Hannah Allam) 1609951869.0
BUSTED: Republican's brother-in-law called stock broker just one minute after getting off phone with senator
ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.
After Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina dumped more than $1.6 million in stocks in February 2020 a week before the coronavirus market crash, he called his brother-in-law, according to a new Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
They talked for 50 seconds.
Burr, according to the SEC, had material nonpublic information regarding the incoming economic impact of coronavirus.
The very next minute, Burr's brother-in-law, Gerald Fauth, called his broker.
ProPublica previously reported that Fauth, a member of the National Mediation Board, had dumped stock the same day Burr did. But it was previously unknown that Burr and Fauth spoke that day, and that their contact came just before Fauth began the process of dumping stock himself.
The revelations come as part of an effort by the SEC to force Fauth to comply with a subpoena that the agency said he has stonewalled for more than a year, and which was filed not long after ProPublica's story.
In the filings, the SEC also revealed that there is an ongoing insider trading investigation into both Burr and Fauth's trades.
It had previously been reported that federal prosecutors had decided not to charge Burr.
Burr's spokesperson did not immediately respond to questions. Fauth's lawyer and the SEC did not respond to questions. Fauth hung up on a ProPublica reporter.
According to the SEC, Fauth has cited a medical condition for why he cannot comply with the subpoena, even as he has been healthy enough to continue his duties at the National Mediation Board. In its filings, the SEC accuses Fauth of engaging in “a relentless battle" to dodge the subpoena.
In 2017, President Donald Trump appointed Fauth to the three-person board, a federal agency that facilitates labor-management relations within the nation's railroad and airline industries. President Joe Biden reappointed him to the board.
On the day he received the call from Burr, Fauth sold between $97,000 and $280,000 worth of shares in six companies — including several that were hit particularly hard in the market swoon and economic downturn. According to the SEC, the first broker he called after hearing from Burr was out of the office, so he immediately called another broker to execute the trades.
In its filings, the SEC also alleges, for the first time, that Burr had material nonpublic information about the economic impact of the coming coronavirus crisis, based on his role at the time as chairman of the intelligence committee, as a member of the health committee and through former staffers who were directing key aspects of the government response to the virus.
The week after the trades, the market began its crash, falling by more than 30% in the subsequent month.
Burr came under scrutiny after ProPublica reported that he sold off a significant percentage of his stocks shortly before the market tanked, unloading between $628,000 and $1.72 million of his holdings on Feb. 13 in 33 separate transactions. The precise amount of his stock sales, more than $1.6 million, is also a new detail from this week's SEC filings. In his roles on the intelligence and health committees, Burr had access to the government's most highly classified information about threats to America's security and public health concerns.
Before his sell-off, Burr had assured the public that the federal government was well prepared to handle the virus. In a Feb. 7 op-ed that he co-authored with another senator, he said “the United States today is better prepared than ever before to face emerging public health threats, like the coronavirus."
That month, however, according to a recording obtained by NPR, Burr had given a VIP group at an exclusive social club a much more dire preview of the economic impact of the coronavirus, warning it could curtail business travel, cause schools to be closed and result in the military mobilizing to compensate for overwhelmed hospitals.
Burr defended his actions, saying he relied solely on public information, including CNBC reports, to inform his trades and did not rely on information he obtained as a senator.
Alice Fisher, Burr's attorney, told ProPublica at the time that “Sen. Burr participated in the stock market based on public information and he did not coordinate his decision to trade on Feb. 13 with Mr. Fauth."
This Wednesday, Florida's GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis scheduled special elections for three South Florida legislative seats that are being vacated this January, the Miami Herald reports. The move comes after he was sued for not taking action for months.
The three districts are Democratic strongholds.
"The district vacancies, which will become effective in January, were created in July when Sen. Perry Thurston and Reps. Bobby DuBose and Omari Hardy, all Black Democrats, resigned to qualify to fill Florida's 20th Congressional District vacancy left by the death of Congressman Alcee Hastings," the Herald reports. "The governor's executive order set the primary date for the three legislative seats for Jan. 11 and the general election for March 8. This means Democrats, who are in the minority in the Florida Legislature, will have fewer members in each chamber for the 60-day legislative session next year, which starts Jan. 11 and ends March 11."
It took DeSantis 87 days to schedule the elections after the vacancies popped up. According to the lawsuit, this is the second time DeSantis has been sued to call a special elections.
"The strength of any democracy is the ability for voters to be represented and heard," said Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book, according to Florida Politics. "Sadly, the Governor has chosen to deny voters in Senate District 33 and House Districts 88 and 94 their constitutional right to be represented in Tallahassee during the 2022 Legislative Session. No Floridian's vote or voice should ever be silenced."
Read the full report over at the Miami Herald.
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