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‘It’s time to act’: Right-wing paramilitaries are surging in America — and threatening democracy

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On Tuesday, The Washington Post profiled the right-wing paramilitaries that are popping up all over the country amid national tensions.

One such activist, Peter Diaz of Washington State, “formed his own political party and is the leader of American Wolf, a roving band of civilians who have anointed themselves “peacekeepers” amid months of tense protests over racism and policing. In the name of law and order, members of his informal group have shot paintballs at demonstrators and carry zip ties and bear spray as they look for antifascists,” said the report. “We’re the silent majority,” Diaz was quoted as saying. “It’s time to act.”

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These groups have sprung up in response to both the civil rights protests following the killing of George Floyd, and the lockdown orders and other public health measures imposed to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Some of the groups are less obviously militarized, like Matt Marshall’s Washington Three Percenters — so named based on the longstanding myth that only three percent of the colonists resisted the British in the Revolutionary War.

“In speeches, Marshall has preached against racism and in favor of tolerance. He advocates civic duty and civil discourse,” said the report. However, “Marshall’s critics see a darker reality beneath the rhetoric. Civil rights groups contend that the Washington Three Percenters is an anti-government militia that promotes conspiracy theories and seeks to undermine democratic institutions.”

“We know that their paramilitary presence has served to heighten and escalate tense situations,” said Eric K. Ward, who heads up the counter-extremist Western States Center. “These are organizations that have created space and protected individuals who are affiliated with white nationalist organizations and ideologies. They certainly haven’t shown responsible leadership.”

You can read more here.

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Veteran Republican operative shames the GOP — and warns they won’t get rid of Trumpism ‘for at least a generation’

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Stuart Stevens is a veteran Republican campaign operative from five presidential races. When he spoke to PBS's Judy Woodruff Wednesday, he lamented the GOP failed the moral test it was presented with Donald Trump.

"Well, I think there's been two strains in the party. Call it an Eisenhower strain going back to the '50s and a McCarthy strain," Stevens said, recalling when the GOP would talk about expanding their party and bringing in more African-American voters. "Now we don't even hear any talk anymore of a big tent. And we seem to have settled into a very comfortable white grievance identity."

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Seth Meyers mocks Trump’s Axios interview where he ‘couldn’t even remember his own BS — that’s how fried his brain is’

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In his response to President Donald Trump's bizarre interview with Axios reporter Jonathan Swan, "Late Night" comedian Seth Meyers explained the Trump interview in a single photo:

"You know something has gone horribly wrong when a journalist interviewing the president looks like that," said Meyers. "That's the face you make when your dad gets drunk and decides to tell you about the night you were conceived."

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Former Trump ambassador tells Rachel Maddow ‘it’s a big red flag’ that Trump is trying to hide investigation of Turnberry scam

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Former acting ambassador to the U.K., Lewis Lukens, told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow that the inspector general raised questions to him and embassy staff in the U.K. about President Donald Trump's demand for the ambassador to lobby for the British Open to be hosted at Trump's golf course in Scotland.

According to Lukens, he told those questioning how to go about getting the British Open at Trump Turnberry, and Lukens said he was clear that it was "unethical" and "possibly illegal." Still, Trump's cronies persisted.

He explained that when the inspector general did the investigation they went back to Washington to write up the report and that it should have been released by now, but it obviously has not. Today, the acting IG, who took over just three months ago, abruptly resigned.

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