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Come ‘say this to my face,’ says Ayanna Pressley after Betsy DeVos compares being pro-choice to being pro-slavery

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Democratic congresswoman and chair of the House Abortion Access Task Force said she “would welcome the opportunity to educate” the Education Secretary on reproductive rights. And maybe U.S. history of chattel slavery?

Rep. Ayanna Pressley, chair of the House Abortion Access Task Force, offered Thursday to give Education Secretary Betsy DeVos a face-to-face lesson on reproductive rights and U.S. history after the billionaire cabinet official likened the arguments of pro-choice advocates to those of slavery supporters during the Civil War Era—a comparison one critic denounced as “utterly deranged.”

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“I say again: only slavery was slavery. This is utterly deranged, and [Betsy DeVos] should resign.”
—Jamil Smith, Rolling Stone

“Dear Betsy, As a Black woman and the chair of the Abortion Access Task Force, I invite you to come by the Hill and say this to my face,” Pressley tweeted after DeVos’ remarks during an event sponsored by Colorado Christian University spread across social media. “Would welcome the opportunity to educate you.”

“The rhetoric and policies of anti-choice zealots like DeVos put the lives and bodily autonomy of far too many people at risk,” added Pressley, a Massachusetts Democrat.

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During the Colorado Christian dinner in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday evening, DeVos invoked former President Abraham Lincoln and said “he too contended with the ‘pro-choice’ arguments of his day.”

“They suggested that a state’s choice to be slave or to be free had no moral question in it,” DeVos said. “Well, President Lincoln reminded those pro-choicers that there is a vast portion of the American people that do not look upon that matter as being this very little thing. They look upon it as a vast moral evil.”

“Lincoln was right about the slavery ‘choice’ then, and he would be right about the life ‘choice’ today,” she said. “Because as it’s been said: Freedom is not about doing what we want. Freedom is about having the right to do what we ought.”

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Dr. Megan Kate Nelson, a Civil War historian, was dumbfounded by DeVos’ remarks, which came just days before the anti-choice March for Life is set to take place in Washington, D.C. Friday with President Donald Trump expected to be among the attendees.

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Rolling Stone senior writer Jamil Smith ripped DeVos for attempting to “turn Abraham Lincoln into an avatar for the anti-abortion right.”

“I say again: only slavery was slavery,” Smith tweeted. “This is utterly deranged, and she should resign.”

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Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call


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There’s no respite from Trump’s vindictiveness and foolishness

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As we know, even in the midst of a national emergency, Donald Trump could find time and bandwidth to continue his retribution campaign.

He dismissed Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence agencies, for doing “a terrible job,” satisfying his own thirst for vengeance for anyone who actually adhered to law and practice over blind loyalty to Trump himself. Indeed, asked about it the next day, Trump underscored his action by saying, Atkinson “was no Trump supporter, that I can tell you.”

It was an act that we once would have labeled corruption, by Democrats and Republicans – that is using the office for personal purposes – if Congress and too many Americans had not since become inured by so many like instances.

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This is how Taiwan and South Korea bucked the global lockdown trend

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As the coronavirus pandemic sparks global lockdowns, life has continued comparatively unhindered in places like Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong after their governments and citizens took decisive early action against the unfolding crisis.

At first glance Taiwan looks like an ideal candidate for the coronavirus. The island of 23 million lies just 180 kilometres (110 miles) off mainland China.

Yet nearly 100 days in, Taiwan has just 376 confirmed cases and five fatalities while restaurants, bars, schools, universities and offices remain open.

The government of President Tsai Ing-wen, whose deputy is an epidemiologist, made tough decisions while the crisis was nascent to stave off the kind of pain now convulsing much of the rest of the world.

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Republican ex-lawmaker with coronavirus scolds Wisconsin GOP for forcing voters to risk their health

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On CNN Tuesday, former Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA), who is himself dealing with a bout of COVID-19, chastised the Wisconsin GOP for doing everything in their power to block the state elections from being moved — and forcing many voters to stand in line and risk exposure to the virus to cast their ballot.

"I have to tell you, here in Pennsylvania we have a Democratic governor and Republican legislature," Dent told host Don Lemon. "They postponed the election here from April 28 until June 2. Without any controversy. Everybody agreed it was the right thing to do and they moved on. I'm surprised Wisconsin took this risk, knowing they don't have to."

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