JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — National Democrats have inundated the Missouri attorney general’s office with Sunshine Law requests this year — but they’re not looking for information on Eric Schmitt, the current attorney general running for U.S. Senate. The Democratic National Committee wants documents dating to U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley’s two years as Missouri attorney general, according to records obtained by the Post-Dispatch. The 89 separate open records requests since March from the DNC show Democrats are actively looking for information potentially damaging to Hawley as he possibly prepares for a pre...
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Arizona Republicans are calling for an investigation into newly elected Gov. Katie Hobbs, which a local columnist proves the party has lost its grasp on reality.
The state GOP chairwoman Kelli Ward asked Arizona attorney general Mark Brnovich to look into "bombshell" allegations that Hobbs pressured Twitter to remove posts while running her campaign, which she called an illegal infringement on First Amendment rights, and Arizona Republican columnist Laurie Roberts dismissed the claims as "delusional."
"Goodness," Roberts wrote. "So what manner of mischief did Gov.-elect Katie Machiavelli perpetrate on an unsuspecting public? What treachery warrants such angst over at GOP HQ?"
"According to internal Twitter documents that surfaced over the weekend, Hobbs’ [then-secretary of state] office notified the nonprofit Center for Information Security (CIS) about a pair of tweets containing 'election related misinformation,'" she added. "CIS then passed along the information to Twitter, which deleted the two tweets."
The tweets, which were posted by a since-deleted account apparently based in Germany, were flagged on Jan. 7, 2021, the day after the insurrection and five months before Hobbs announced her gubernatorial campaign, falsely claimed Arizona's voter registration system was run by a foreign corporation.
“It’s the Secretary of State’s job to make sure that voters are informed about how to vote and how our election system works,” said Allie Bones, assistant secretary of state. “One of the ways we do that is by working to counter disinformation online that can confuse voters.”
Ward and right-wing conservatives like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), failed gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake and Fox News host Tucker Carlson have claimed the episode disqualifies Hobbs from office and merits a criminal investigation, but Roberts said they've lost their minds.
"According to Ward and the most delusional on the far right, it was all an orchestrated plot aimed at stifling dissent so that Hobbs could then march, unchallenged, into the Governor’s Office two years later," Roberts wrote. "Gee, and you wonder why the Republican Party lost every major race in Arizona this year?"
Resentful of the amount of time Democrats spent investigating former President Donald Trump's corruption scandals when they controlled the committees, the incoming House Republican majority has vowed to launch a volley of investigations of their own, on everything from how the Department of Homeland Security is securing the border, to whether the January 6 rioters accused of assaulting police officers were treated fairly in jail, to whether Hunter Biden may have profited from the White House the way Trump's children did for four years.
But on Wednesday, writing for The Bulwark, Joe Perticone reported that Democratic lawmakers are issuing House Republicans a stark warning: overreach with your investigatory powers, and it will blow up in your face.
"Democrats who spoke with The Bulwark said House Republicans’ stated oversight priorities are nakedly political, but won’t help the GOP’s future electoral efforts. Meanwhile, Senate Democrats are poised to take the baton on what they consider critical investigations, such as that of the House January 6th Committee," wrote Perticone. "Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine told The Bulwark Senate Democrats could pick up the slack where these investigations have fallen off in the House. Whether they will need to do so depends on which route Republicans take over the next two years — a serious one, or a frivolous detour."
"I think if we do the work of a legislative body and produce some results, good confirmations, continue to produce bipartisan bills as we have, and the House is known for wacky investigations that aren’t really top of mind to anybody but an extreme view, that will show a real contrast between who the two parties are in ways that will not necessarily be harmful to us," Kaine added.
There is precedent for Republicans going too far with investigations. Throughout the 90s, House Republicans turned former President Bill Clinton's life upside down looking for evidence of various conspiracy theories about his financial deals, which ultimately led to them moving to impeach him for lying under oath about an extramarital affair. Republicans actually lost House seats in the midterm, just before impeachment began.
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) is one of the few Republicans warning his colleagues their investigative priorities could hurt them, reported Perticone: "I think it’s really hard to know what the politics of a course of action might be in this day and age, to know where our party stands, what our base wants, what independent voters want. But I think you have to do what you think is right and I think the American people want us to tackle some of the big challenges we have — immigration, inflation, and so forth — and the other things that divert from those priorities I think are a waste of time.”
Time magazine named President Volodymyr Zelensky as well as "the spirit of Ukraine" as its 2022 person of the year on Wednesday, for the resistance the country has shown in the face of Russia's invasion.
Calling Zelensky's decision to remain in Kyiv and rally his country amid the ongoing war "fateful," Time editor in chief Edward Felsenthal said this year's decision was "the most clear-cut in memory."
Since Russia's February 24 invasion, Zelensky has delivered daily speeches followed not only by Ukrainians but by citizens and governments around the globe.
He has appeared on the frontlines and recently celebrated in the streets of Kherson when Ukraine pushed Russia from the critical southern city.
"His information offensive shifted the geopolitical weather system, setting off a wave of action that swept the globe," Felsenthal wrote in announcing the winner.
"Whether the battle for Ukraine fills one with hope or with fear, Volodymyr Zelensky galvanized the world in a way we haven't seen in decades," Felsenthal added.
Zelensky shares the 2022 title with "the spirit of Ukraine," which Felsenthal said was embodied by the "countless individuals inside and outside the country" who fought behind the scenes, including everyday people such as chefs and surgeons.
Time first presented its Person of the Year award in 1927.
Last year's honoree was Tesla and SpaceX chief Elon Musk, who has since made major headlines with his high-profile purchase of Twitter.
© Agence France-Presse