WASHINGTON — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said her work challenging Michigan's 1931 ban on abortion in state court is "more important than ever" after a leaked draft opinion showed the U.S. Supreme Court initially has voted to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. "I'll fight like hell to protect abortion access in Michigan," the Democratic governor tweeted late Monday in response to the news. A draft majority opinion circulated within the court in February and obtained by Politico said the 1972 ruling, Roe v. Wade, which guaranteed women constitutional protections for abortion rights, was "egr...
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Rep. Jamie Raskin dismisses right-wing calls for civil war as 'desperate' response to Trump's 'losing' case
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) said the civil war chatter on right-wing social media was a "desperate" attempt to bail out Donald Trump from accountability.
The Maryland Democrat said the FBI search of Mar-A-Lago gave him confidence that the Department of Justice would seriously pursue a criminal investigation into the former president, and he told The Raw Story that he's unconcerned about the violent rhetoric against law enforcement in response to the move.
"To tell you the truth, I heard all of the chatter about civil war and political violence over the course of this week and it sounded desperate ... to me," Raskin said. "It reminded me of Vladimir Putin. Every time he suffers a major political defeat or military setback, he starts talking about nuclear war, and that obviously rattles people, but to me it's ultimately a sign of desperation."
"The America people are not interested in civil war, the American people are not interested in political violence," Raskin said. "That's a losing formula, so they should come up with other talking points."
The FBI raid on Trump's palatial Mar-a-Lago residence has sparked a political firestorm in an already bitterly divided country and comes as he is weighing another White House run in 2024.
Trump has condemned Monday's raid as politically motivated and a "weaponization" of the Justice Department. "Nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before," he said.
In a statement on his Truth Social platform on Thursday, Trump said his attorneys had been "cooperating fully" and "the government could have had whatever they wanted, if we had it."
"And then, out of nowhere and with no warning, Mar-a-Lago was raided at 6:30 in the morning," he said, adding that agents even "went through the First Lady's closets and rummaged through her clothing and personal items."
Attorney General Merrick Garland criticized "unfounded attacks on the professionalism of the FBI and Justice Department agents and prosecutors" following the raid.
"I will not stand by silently when their integrity is unfairly attacked," he said. "Men and women of the FBI and the Justice Department are dedicated patriotic public servants."
Leading Republicans have rallied around the former president and harshly denounced the Justice Department and FBI.
With additional reporting by Matt Laslo and AFP
Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY) on Friday criticized colleague Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) after she went on an angry tirade about the Internal Revenue Service that he called out for containing multiple falsehoods.
During a debate about the Inflation Reduction Act, Boebert accused Democrats of "making the IRS, with armed agents, larger than the Pentagon."
Boebert further went on to say that, "this bill hires 87,000 new IRS agents and they are armed and the job description tells them that they need to be required to carry a firearm and expect to use deadly force if necessary!"
Boebert concluded by accusing Democrats of committing "armed robbery" of American taxpayers.
Shortly after this, Yarmuth took to the floor to set the record straight.
"I will say in response to the gentlewoman from Colorado, this is typical of what the Republicans are doing," he said. "First of all, they're making up numbers. There's nowhere anywhere that says 87,000 new IRS agents will be hired in this bill. That's a totally fabricated number. And the idea that they're armed -- I know Mrs. Boebert would like everyone to be armed as they are in her restaurant, but that's not what IRS agents do. I would implore my Republican colleagues to... cut out the scare tactics."
House Dem slaps down Lauren Boebert's 'totally fabricated' rant about IRS after she gets her mic cut www.youtube.com
Former Florida GOP lawmaker caught up in FBI investigation into multi-million dollar 'bilking' of taxpayers: report
According to a report from the Palm Beach Post, a former Florida Republican lawmaker who served as Speaker of the House is under investigation and accused of ripping off taxpayers to the tune of millions after a company he heads reportedly submitted invoices for hurricane clean-up that was never done.
Allan Bense, who served in the state legislature from 1998 to 2006 where he rose to speaker before being replaced by Marco Rubio, is one of the subjects mentioned in an investigation into GAC Contractors according to court documents.
According to the report, the investigation centers around "millions" billed to local governments in 2018 for Hurricane Michael clean-up.
"The company’s top executives, including Bense and its late CEO Derwin White, commanded its crews to visit work sites with equipment but not perform any work, and then billed Bay County, the school district and other government municipalities, federal investigators allege in an affidavit filed with a search warrant carried out last year at the company’s headquarters," the report states before adding, "Federal law enforcement authorities, in the affidavit, said that Bense and White ordered GAC's workers to clean up their own homes or properties and that of other top public officials, including state Sen. George Gainer, Lynn Haven City Attorney Adam Albritton's house and Bay County School Superintendent Bill Husfelt, among others."
The report adds, "The search warrant itself called for government review of any and all records, documents and supporting documentation relating to owner account expenditures and accounting entries for Derwin White and Allan Bense."
"Bense, who served in the Florida House of Representatives from 1998 to 2006 and as House Speaker between 2004-06, has been a managing partner of GAC Contractors, alongside Derwin White, since 1996. This year he is listed by the Florida Division of Corporations as the company's chairman," the Post is reporting.