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White Florida state official asks black man seeking right to vote: ‘How many different mothers, kids do you have?’

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After serving time for a felony, Florida resident Erwin Jones, appeared in court before Gov. Rick Scott (R) and the cabinet, sitting as the Executive Clemency Board, seeking to get his civil rights back, so he could vote, sit on a jury  or run for public office.

However, Jones, a black man was subjected to racial discrimination as Florida’s Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis asked him a series of highly offensive questions, according to the Florida Phoenix.

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During the June 14 meeting, Patronis asked Jones how many children he had, and “how many different mothers to those children [there are]?”

Patronis, a Republican also asked another man seeking clemency, William Reid Hicks, if he attended church or not.

Tallahassee attorney, Richard Greenberg, who has represented people seeking clemency for more than two decades said Patronis questions were shocking.

“I don’t think I’ve heard anyone else ask that question. It seems totally irrelevant,” Greenberg said.

Activists said his questioning showed the: “deeply flawed process felons face when seeking official clemency to restore their civil rights in Florida.”

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Patronis is running for reelection in November

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This story previously displayed a photo of Florida State Senator Jeremy Ring who is running again Patronis in the upcoming election. We regret the error.)

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Trump has committed 6 impeachable offenses: Harvard Law’s Laurence Tribe says ‘the evidence is all there’

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Constitutional law expert Laurence Tribe broke down the six impeachable offenses President Donald Trump has committed during a Thursday appearance on MSNBC's "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell.

Tribe has argued 36 cases before the United States Supreme Court and taught at Harvard Law for 50 years. He co-authored the 2018 book To End a Presidency: The Power of Impeachment with Joshua Matz.

"Everyone was in the loop, it was no secret. That was the testimony from Ambassador Gordon Sondland yesterday as he implicated the president, Secretary of State, White House chief of staff, and former National Security Advisor John Bolton and other administration officials in the plot to bribe the president of Ukraine to publicly launch an investigation into Joe Biden in exchange for U.S. military aid to Ukraine that was authorized by Congress and that the president was withholding," O'Donnell reported.

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Rachel Maddow breaks down how public opinion is catching up with the facts of Trump’s impeachment

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MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow on Thursday broke down how the details from the televised impeachment hearings are being reported in local newspapers.

The host read the headlines from multiple newspapers following the damning testimony by Ambassador Gordon Sondland.

The Los Angels Times headlined, "Sonland implicates president." "Envoy says Trump directed effort," was The Wall Street Journal headline.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch headlined, "'Everyone was in the loop. It was no secret': Defiant Sondland says he followed Trump's orders."

"Trump directed pressure on Ukraine, ambassador says," headlined The Kansas City Star.

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Shep Smith blasts autocrats in first public remarks since leaving Fox News — and donates $500,000 to protect journalists

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On Thursday, for the first time since exiting Fox News, reporter Shepard Smith gave public comments at the International Press Freedom Awards — and used the occasion to blast autocratic leaders who use their power to suppress journalism.

"Intimidation and vilification of the press is now a global phenomenon. We don’t have to look far for evidence of that,” said Smith. "Our belief a decade ago that the online revolution would liberate us now seems a bit premature, doesn’t it? Autocrats have learned how to use those same online tools to shore up their power. They flood the world of information with garbage and lies, masquerading as news. There’s a phrase for that."

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