President Trump has lashed out at the U.S. Postal Service as the pandemic brings it to the brink of collapse and more people than ever are relying on the mail. Trump claims the agency is only losing money because it is undercharging Amazon and other companies for shipping. “It just isn’t true,” says American Postal Workers Union President Mark Dimondstein.
A Capitol rioter who drove his Tesla Model 3 from Miami to Washington before participating in the Jan. 6 insurrection told FBI agents he was "in the bathroom pooping when the violence occurred."
Federal prosecutors are seeking a sentence of four months in jail for Felipe Marquez, who pleaded guilty in September to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly or disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds.
In a sentencing memo filed Thursday, prosecutors said they are seeking jail time for several reasons, including that Marquez "interfered with Capitol police officers trying to protect the building by repeatedly asking them for selfies and fist bumps," and spent 10 minutes with 20 other rioters inside the office of Democratic Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley, which suffered substantial damage.
Marquez also carried a Glock firearm with him from Florida to D.C., although he told authorities he left it in his car during the insurrection.
Inside Merkley's office, Marquez used his cell phone to film the room, according to the sentencing memo.
"Marquez’s own cell phone video captured other rioters smoking and yelling and banging on the table," the memo states. "Marquez then held his vape pen up to the camera, as if to capture the arrogance of the rioters (himself included) smoking in a senator’s office during an Electoral College certification proceeding to formally elect the next President of the United States."
Marquez "evidently thought the whole experience was joyful and celebratory," according to prosecutors, and he later posted videos of himself inside the Capitol on Snapchat.
During an interview with the FBI at the time of his arrest in January, Marquez said he traveled to the Captiol to protest "communism and prostitution." According to the sentencing memo, Marquez also stated, "I was in the bathroom pooping when the violence occurred," adding that he "didn't see any violence at all."
In a subsequent interview with CBS Miami, Marquez compared Capitol rioters to heroes from the African-American civil rights movement.
"This is like a Rosa Parks, like Martin Luther King moment for me," he said.
Marquez's attorneys are seeking a sentence of probation.
More from Twitter below.
When Marquez was interviewed about his role in J6 by the FBI, he told agents...\n\n"I went there to protest communism and prostitution."\nand\n"I was in the bathroom pooping when the violence occurred." pic.twitter.com/a1Am8gtY8U— Alan Feuer (@Alan Feuer) 1638482794
Felipe Marquez\u2019s team, meanwhile, want probation.\n\n"The former president, the rally\u2019s organizers and speakers, and other nefarious, organized groups contributed to the chaos of that day, and are arguably, though not charged, greatly more culpable for what happened on January 6."— Ryan J. Reilly (@Ryan J. Reilly) 1638484515
Marquez\u2019s federal public defenders say he "did take a few drags of nicotine from a vaporized pen, but he did not participate in the smoking of marijuana.\u201d https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/21127636-felipe-marquez\u00a0\u2026pic.twitter.com/Ml8uf2qFoB— Ryan J. Reilly (@Ryan J. Reilly) 1638484937
On Thursday, as the House prepared to vote on a bipartisan continuing resolution to avert a government shutdown, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) took to the House floor in a fit of rage and railed against the agreement, demanding that there be a shutdown.
"What an outrage. What an irresponsibility," said Greene, a QAnon-linked representative who was stripped of committee assignments over social media activity endorsing the killing of Democrats. "That isn't courage. That is not responsibility. That is out-of-control behavior that this Congress needs to rein in."
"This government should be shut down," Greene thundered. "You want to know why it should be shut down? Because the people in here, the people in here cannot control themselves. The people in here don't understand how to balance a checkbook. And the people in here do not deserve, deserve their responsibility on how to spend the American people's money. 29 trillion dollars! 29 trillion dollars, Madam Speaker. Shut it down! Do not pass the CR. Shut it down!"
Despite Greene's tantrum, the resolution passed the House late on Thursday afternoon.
Former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows has a book coming out about his experiences in the Trump White House -- and members of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6th Capitol riots think that it blows up his claims of executive privilege.
Politico reports that members of the committee believe that Meadows's book will make it difficult for him to maintain his stance that all of his conversations with former President Donald Trump fall under executive privilege.
"It's… very possible that by discussing the events of Jan. 6 in his book, if he does that, he's waiving any claim of privilege," Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) told Politico. "So, it'd be very difficult for him to maintain ‘I can't speak about events to you, but I can speak about them in my book.'"
Mark Rozell, a George Mason University professor and expert on executive privilege, shared Schiff's assessment that Meadows's book could hinder his ability to claim blanket executive privilege.
"Executive privilege covers information vital to the national interest to protect, as well as the privacy of some internal White House deliberations," he said. "If the same information is made public, there can be no valid claim to a right to withhold it from Congress."
Rozell added that "it is hard to imagine a stronger measure of contempt for Congress' authority than to refuse to cooperate with an investigation but being willing to present the requested information in the public domain to sell books."