Armin Laschet, the centrist premier of Germany's most populous state, took the first step on Saturday towards succeeding Angela Merkel as the next chancellor of Europe’s biggest economy. The centre-right Christian Democrats (CDU) selected 59-year-old Laschet to head the party as Germany gears up for national elections in September. Whoever is leader of the CDU is traditionally the party's candidate for chancellor. Laschet fended off a strong challenge from wealthy corporate lawyer Friedrich Merz in a run-off vote at the CDU's first-ever digital party convention, which was framed by the coronav...
Capitol riot committee won't waste time asking Trump officials for testimony -- and will go right to subpoenas
The House Select Committee investigating the deadly January 6th riots at the United States Capitol building isn't going to bother asking Trump officials nicely if they want to cooperate.
Commission Chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) told CNN's Manu Raju that the committee will immediately start issuing subpoenas, as he said he was wary of the stalling tactics frequently used by Trump administration officials any time Congress asked them for information.
"Letters just lengthen the time," Thompson said. "We just want to get it all done."
Thompson said that the committee would be meeting with Attorney General Merrick Garland soon to discuss getting access to "all relevant data," as well as evidence compiled by impeachment investigators.
Tuesday marked the first day of testimony of the Capitol riot commission in which Capitol Police officers told stories about being physically assaulted by Trump supporters.
Unhinged conservatives lash out at Capitol police 'crisis actors' who testified before Jan. 6 commission
Four law enforcement officers who witnessed the violence firsthand at the U.S. Capitol on January 6 are again coming under attack — this time from right-wing media figures hoping to downplay the Donald Trump-inspired insurrection.
On Tuesday, the House Democratic-backed select committee held its first hearing on the January 6 Capitol riot.But rather than defending law enforcement – a natural posture for right-wing media when discussing state-sponsored violence – conservative pundits pounced on the officers, belittling their grievances and outright denying their accounts.
Newsmax host Greg Kelly has largely been at the helm of the online brigade, suggesting that the officers may have been "used" as "pawns" to push a left-wing agenda.
Referring to Capitol Officer Michael Fanone, who personally described his own assault by a horde of rioters, Kelly asked his Twitter followers: "Is it possible FANONE was mistaken for ANTIFA? He often, for media appearances, has worn all Black but no insignia, police patches, rank etc."
Kelly is likely referring to any number of baseless conspiracy theories about who killed Ashli Babbitt, a rioter who was shot and killed for attempting to breach the Chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives during the insurrection.
Raheem J. Kassam, the former editor-in-chief of Breitbart News London, also took aim at what he saw as the officers being overly emotional, despite them being nearly killed. "Is there really a Capitol Hill Police Officer crying about hurty words live on national television right now?" Kassam tweeted: "Fucking whole world is laughing at this shit."
Kurt Schlichter, a senior columnist for Townhall.com, called out Officer Harry Dunn, who during his testimony called it "disheartening and disappointing" to "live in a country with people … that attack you because of the color of your skin just to hurt you. Those words are weapons."
"You lying sack," Schlichter responded.
Other conservatives, meanwhile, fell back on downright conspiracy.
Julie Kelly, a former political consultant and conservative writer, called Fanone a "crisis actor."
"Crisis actor Fanone just beat on the table and said it's 'disgraceful!' that any elected official denies his narrative of what happened on January 6," Kelly tweeted. "Calls it an 'insurrection.' Blasting GOP lawmakers. Now says this isn't about politics, lol. He has many tattoos."
The first law enforcement officers to provide testimony included Pfc. Harry Dunn and Sgt. Aquilino Gonell of the Capitol Police, as well as Michael Fanone and Daniel Hodges of D.C. Metropolitan Police Department.
Over 550 people have been arrested in connection with the Capitol riot, though thousands of Trump supporters had stormed the Capitol.
Fox News reporter Peter Doocy gets shut down at White House briefing yet again after asking another COVID 'gotcha' question
The same Fox News reporter who on Monday revealed he did not understand some very basic issues surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, forcing the White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki to explain it to him, on Tuesday again failed to grasp some very basic issues surrounding the pandemic, again forcing her to again explain the basics to him.
"Why did the President say, 'If you've been fully vaccinated, you no longer need to wear a mask? Let me repeat if you are fully vaccinated, you no longer need to wear a mask,' if it was possible that was going to turn out not to be true?" Fox News' Peter Doocy asked on Tuesday, referring to the news CDC today is expected to tighten mask guidance to include vaccinated people in high-transmissible areas of the country.
"Oh, Peter, I think we're all dealing with an evolving virus where there's no playbook and no historic precedent," Psaki replied, being forced to remind him that viruses mutate, and the direction of pandemics change. "And what the American people should feel confident in is that we are going to continue to be guided by science, look at public health data, in order to provide new guidance, if it's needed to save lives, protect the American people. When he made those comments back in May, we were dealing with a very different strain of the virus than we were than we are today. And Delta is more transmissible. It's spreading much more quickly. It was nearly non-existent in the United States back in May."
Psaki went on to note that in May, when the guidance changed to those who are vaccinated do not need to wear a mask, the Delta variant accounted for just 5% of infections. It is now well over 80% of infections.
The Washington Post just reported those "infected with the delta variant appear to carry a viral load that is 1,000 times higher than earlier versions of the virus, they said, and can easily spread it."
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