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Watch: Florida Republican tells colleagues that ‘thoughts and prayers’ are the only defense against evil

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Republican state senator Kelli Stargel lectured her fellow Florida lawmakers and constituents during a special session Saturday, taking to the floor to deliver a speech in which she advocated against gun control, against banning assault weapons, against allowing local towns and cities to make their own laws to restrict guns, while arguing in favor of arming teachers. Senator Stargel also attacked those who mock the “thoughts and prayers” she offers when there is yet another mass shooting.

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“If I thought for one moment that if we banned assault weapons, that all of these tragedies would end, you would have me. I would be with you. But are we going to ban fertilizer, which is what they used in the Oklahoma bombing? Are we going to ban pressure cookers, which is what they used in the Boston massacre? Are we going to ban the multiple handguns that were used in other assaults? Are we going to ban the sawed off shotguns which was used in Columbine?” she asked.

Senator Stargel in 2014 argued extensively to regulate beer and require it be sold only through distributors. She was not as concerned about regulating guns. Her reasoning: “Higher beer production and higher consumption go hand-in-hand.” Apparently allowing easily-accessible guns is an entirely different matter.

“It’s not the weapon,” Stargel continued on Saturday, arguing against regulating guns and against banning assault weapons. “It’s the evil from within. And unfortunately, Senator Stewart said at the very beginning of her debate, when we say ‘thoughts and prayers,’ it’s frowned upon. And I take real offense at that because thoughts and prayers are really the only thing that’s going to stop the evil from within the individual who is taking up their arms to do this kind of a massacre.”

“So I will continue to do the thoughts and prayers,” Stargel said, adding that she would also, despite giving her discomfort, look at increasing the age limit to buy assault weapons to 21. She mentioned mental health and coming from a “broken home” as reasons why people commit mass shootings.

“But in my opinion, the one thing that will actually change this the most is the one thing that has actually become fighting words, which is to say ‘thoughts and prayers.’ So that’s something I’m going to continue to add to my comprehensive plan, that we can hopefully stop the evil that is happening from within our world.”

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After Stargel’s and other lawmakers’ remarks, the Florida Senate voted against the bill to ban assault weapons. They then paused to observe a moment of silence for the 17 people shot to death on February 14 at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Watch the video below via The Washington Post

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Chicago Mayor Lightfoot to Trump: ‘What I really want to say … begins with F and it ends with U’

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CHICAGO — Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Friday ripped President Donald Trump, saying he’s fomenting violence and playing to racist urges for political gain in response to the killing of a black man by a Minneapolis police officer and subsequent rioting.Lightfoot’s comments were an apparent response to Trump tweeting a message that included “When the looting starts, the shooting starts” in reply to rioting in Minneapolis and elsewhere following the death of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck while he was in custody. Lig... (more…)

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Law enforcement files discredit Brian Kemp’s accusation that Democrats tried to hack the Georgia election

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It was a stunning accusation: Two days before the 2018 election for Georgia governor, Republican Brian Kemp used his power as secretary of state to open an investigation into what he called a “failed hacking attempt” of voter registration systems involving the Democratic Party.

But newly released case files from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation reveal that there was no such hacking attempt.

The evidence from the closed investigation indicates that Kemp’s office mistook planned security tests and a warning about potential election security holes for malicious hacking.

Kemp then wrongly accused his political opponents just before Election Day — a high-profile salvo that drew national media attention in one of the most closely watched races of 2018.

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Brooklyn 88 Precinct ‘overrun’ — one night after Minneapolis police station was burned to the ground: report

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Protesters have overrun a police station in New York City, according to a CNN law enforcement analyst.

"NYPD source informs me 88 Pct in Brooklyn just been overrun," former FBI Agent James Gagliano reported Friday evening.

"Police Commissioner Shea has called a Level 3 mobilization. Requires all special units respond and four cars from every command in the city to location," he explained.

He said 84 Precinct and Brooklyn North are also "under siege."

https://twitter.com/JamesAGagliano/status/1266546781569142784

Brooklyn 88 precinct overrun pic.twitter.com/rCyV41XKmN

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