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GOPer Tom Cotton slammed for pushing China virus conspiracy: ‘One step removed from anti-vaxxer rubbish’

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In a column for the Washington Post, conservative Jennifer Rubin expressed disgust with Ivy League-educated Republican lawmakers who have descended into anti-intellectual “know-nothingism” in an effort to parrot whatever the GOP is trying to sell to their most rabid supporters.

Following up on comments made by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) on Fox News where he implied that the coronavirus was concocted by Chinese scientists at the Wuhan National Biosafety Laboratory, which has been strongly disputed by health experts (“In response to Cotton’s remarks, as well as in previous interviews with The Washington Post, numerous experts dismissed the possibility the coronavirus may be man-made”), the columnist got right to the point.

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 “When Ivy League-educated, formerly sane politicians spew conspiracy theories, debunked talking points and contempt for science, the question often arises: Do they believe this nonsense (i.e. have they become thickheaded by listening to Rush Limbaugh and watching all that Fox News?), or are they cynical purveyors of claptrap designed to woo unsophisticated voters?” she asked.

In the case of Cotton, Rubin suggested that that would appear to be the case since he should know better.

“This is unadulterated nonsense, one step removed from anti-vaxxer rubbish and UFO-spotting,” she charged. 

According to Rubin, Cotton’s conspiracy-mongering is nothing new for Republicans who have long courted “mostly white, non-college-educated men who attribute their loss of prestige and status to ‘elites,’ especially those in colleges and the media.”

“Even right-wingers who should know better have felt compelled to pander to audiences that wear ignorance and anti-intellectualism as a badge of honor,” Rubin accused. “With Trump, the resort to lies, conspiracies and propaganda has become a matter of political survival for the ambitious right-wingers. Trump’s authoritarian contempt for truth sets the tone, forcing military hawks such as Cotton to remain mum when Trump dismisses traumatic brain injuries as ‘headaches’ and former Cold Warriors such as Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) to parrot Russian propaganda on Ukraine.”

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Rubin went on to note that Trump has made such blathering even more acceptable with his fact-free diatribes that have ramped up attacks on the scientific community — and the US government — as part of his populist pitch.

“Trump has merged the know-nothingism of right-wing populism with a far more dangerous intellectual evolution from defense of limited-government conservatism, which was formerly at the heart of modern conservatism, to outright worship of authoritarianism,” she explained. “Now, far too many conservatives have reverence for executive power and reject constitutional government.”

The columnist then took Cotton — and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) — to task for selling themselves as Ivy League-educated and then cynically pandering to the lowest common denominator with falsehoods that validate their distorted worldviews. 

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“In all of this, the Tom Cottons and Ted Cruzes who used to fancy themselves as intellectuals and originalist scholars have chosen to simply go with the flow,” she wrote. “Too ambitious to endanger a future in a party they imagine will be permanently deformed by Trump, and too cowardly to defy the willful ignorance of their peers, voters and political universe (including right-wing think tanks, publications and advocacy groups), they now pride themselves on their willingness to adopt non-factual conspiracy theories — no matter what the public safety or constitutional implications might be.”

You can read more here.

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WATCH LIVE: Trump holds mask-option Mount Rushmore rally and fireworks celebration

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President Donald Trump left the White House during the COVID-19 pandemic on Friday to attend an Independence Day event in South Dakota.

Trump was told not to attend but did so anyway.

“Trump coming here is a safety concern not just for my people inside and outside the reservation, but for people in the Great Plains. We have such limited resources in Black Hills, and we’re already seeing infections rising,” the Oglala Sioux president, Julian Bear Runner, told the Guardian. “It’s going to cause an uproar if he comes here. People are going to want to exercise their first amendment rights to protest and we do not want to see anyone get hurt or the lands be destroyed."

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2020 Election

Trump Jr’s girlfriend tests positive for COVID-19 in South Dakota ahead of the president’s event: report

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Yet another senior Donald Trump advisor has tested positive for COVID-19.

"Kimberly Guilfoyle, the girlfriend of President Trump’s eldest son and a top fund-raising official for the Trump re-election campaign, tested positive for the coronavirus on Friday before a Fourth of July event at Mount Rushmore, a person familiar with her condition said," The New York Times reported shortly before Trump's speech began.

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Trump supporters shouted ‘go home’ at Native Americans protesting Mount Rushmore rally on their land: report

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Oglala Sioux protesters were arrested protesting against President Donald Trump's Independence Day event at Mount Rushmore on Friday.

The protesters argued that it is their land after the Ft. Laramie Treaty of 1868, which was ratified by the U.S. Senate.

The Black Hills of South Dakota, where Mount Rushmore is located, was among the lands the tribes received to bring about an end to Red Cloud's War, which is also known as the Bozeman Trail War.

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