Coronaviruses very closely related to SARS-CoV-2, which can lead to COVID-19, was uncovered in a pair of bats sampled in Cambodia more than 10 years ago. The discovery, outlined in the journal Nature Communications, further supports theories that the global pandemic was the result of a “spillover of a bat-borne virus.” In December 2019, government officials in the Chinese city of Wuhan confirmed that health authorities were treating several cases of pneumonia of unknown cause. Just a few days later, researchers in China identified a new virus that had infected dozens of people across Asia. In ...
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According to a report from the New York Times, the already highly conservative Idaho Republican Party is attempting to stave off an insurgency of militia members, John Birch Society members and other far-right extremists who are trying to grab the reins of power in the sparsely populated state.
As the Times' Mike Baker documents, aspiring candidates recently showed up to make their pitch at a John Birch sponsored candidates' forum in north Idaho, where some attendees applauded when an aspiring lawmaker proposed “machine guns for everyone" and another advocated taking over federally-owned lands.
According to Baker, the battle between extremist Lt. Gov Janice McGeachin (R) and current Gov. Brad Little, who has pushed to slash taxes and ban abortions, is an example of how far the Idaho GOP could be headed.
"The bitter intraparty contest between Ms. McGeachin and Mr. Little, set to be settled in the state’s primary election on Tuesday, reflects the intensifying split that is pitting Idaho’s conventional pro-gun, anti-abortion, tax-cut conservatives against a growing group of far-right radicals who are agitating to seize control of what is already one of the most conservative corners of the Republican Party in the country," Baker wrote, adding that Idaho has, for years become a hub of anti-government sentiments and now there is a move to take over the GOP apparatus and move the state even farther into extremism.
"Over the years, the Idaho panhandle has been home to white supremacist groups and people ready to take up arms against the U.S. government. Such groups and their allies have been particularly wary of the changing nature of Idaho’s cities, including the legions of other newcomers responding to a booming job market in Boise," the report states. "In Idaho, where Mr. Trump won 64 percent of the vote in 2020, carrying 41 of the state’s 44 counties, many longtime Republicans fear the party’s name, identity and deep conservative values are being commandeered by the state’s fringe elements."
In an interview, former lieutenant governor Jack Riggs issued w warning to his fellow Republicans stating, "If traditional Republican principles in Idaho want to survive, then the traditional Republicans are going to have to work harder.”
The Times report adds, "Mr. Riggs said the local party has been increasingly taken over by zealots motivated by a desire to limit the influence of government, sometimes at the expense of the traditional Republican goals of promoting business and growth. Many of the new activists, he said, express a willingness to fight the U.S. government, with arms if necessary."
Of note, Baker wrote is the resurgence of the Birchers in the state.
"One of the growing powers in the region is the John Birch Society, which dominated the far right in the 1960s and 1970s by opposing the civil rights movement and equal rights for women while embracing conspiratorial notions about communist infiltration of the federal government," he explained. "The group was purged from the conservative movement decades ago but has found a renewed foothold in places like the Idaho panhandle."
You can read more here.
C-SPAN host cuts off profane caller who accuses him of being 'racist' because Buffalo shooter was white
A Republican caller on C-SPAN's Washington Journal program accused host Pedro Echevarria of being a "racist."
During the daily call-in show, Echevarria asked guests to react to a shooting in Buffalo that appeared to be a hate crime where most of the victims were Black.
"It's stir-the-pot Sunday," a Republican caller named John complained. "Trying to get everybody to hate each other on a Sunday. Like the first caller. He thinks white people are systematically our hunting Black people. I guess he doesn't watch channel 6 news in Philadephia, where Blacks kill Blacks three, four in the middle of the afternoon."
"What do you think about the event from yesterday which is the basis of our question today?" Echevarria wondered.
"I don't think nothing of it!" John remarked. "Because I think you're just trying to start a race war. You had the guy in Wisconsin that ran over those Christians in that parade. They were all white. But that wasn't a race crime. OK? And then you just had the guy from Philadephia that went to New York City and shot the people in the subway."
"And how does that relate to yesterday's event?" Echevarria pressed.
"How does it relate?" John exclaimed. "He is a racist! He went from Philadelphia to New York just to kill white people on a subway."
"OK. That's not yesterday's event you're talking about," the C-SPAN host pointed out. "How does that relate to yesterday's event?"
"You're a goddamn racist!" the caller shouted.
"OK," Echevarria stated. "You can't use language on that so we're going to cut you off right there."
Watch the video below from C-SPAN.
Returning from Ukraine where he and other lawmakers met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) blew off fellow Kentucky Republican Senator Rand Paul's plans to try and stop an aid package for the country warding off an invasion by Russia.
According to a report from Politico's Burgess Everett, the senior Republican is fighting a small-scale war of his own with the MAGA-aligned members of his own caucus who are becoming more and more non-interventionist when it comes to helping the embattled Ukrainians.
According to Everett, "It’s Mitch McConnell vs. MAGA when it comes to Ukraine," adding, "At least a half-dozen Republican senators are expected to oppose the aid bill, according to one Republican senator. And in private meetings, an increasing number of GOP senators have questioned various aspects of the request."
Pushing back, McConnell explained on Sunday, "It’s in America’s interest to do this. This is not a charity we’re involved in here. It’s in our interests to help Ukrainians just like it’s in the interest of NATO countries. So this is not some handout.”
Pressed on Paul's vocal opposition to the bill, which he blocked last week, but will likely pass when brought up again this week, McConnell took a jab at the junior senator from his state, telling reporters, "Well, it’s no secret. Rand and I have a different world view of the importance of Americans’ role around the world."
He then added, "So that was not surprising. And it won’t create a problem. We’ll get the job done by Wednesday."
You can read more here.