If you’ve yet to tune into the White House’s daily press briefings, something you may not know is that they regularly feature Fox News correspondent Peter Doocy asking inane questions that simply serve to further fact-free Republican talking points, or complaining of discrimination because the president didn’t call on him. On Tuesday, Doocy did get to pose a question to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, and he used his time to suggest that Major League Baseball shouldn‘t have moved the All-Star Game from Georgia in protest of the state’s new highly restrictive voting law, i.e. conservatives’ bad-faith argument du jour. And, as is typically the case of a Doocy-style inquiry, Psaki was having none of it.
“Is the White House concerned that Major League Baseball is moving their All-Star Game to Colorado where voting regulations are very similar to Georgia?” Doocy asked, a question predicated on bullshit. To which Psaki responded, rhetorically stuffing the Fox News correspondent in a locker: “Well, let me just refute the first point you made. First let me say on Colorado, Colorado allows you to you register on Election Day. Colorado has voting by mail where they send to 100% of people in the state who are eligible, applications to vote by mail; 94% of people in Colorado voted by mail in the 2020 election. They also allow for a range of materials to provide, even if they vote on Election Day, for the limited number of people who vote on Election Day. I think it’s important to remember the context here: The Georgia legislation is built on a lie. There was no widespread fraud in the 2020 election. Georgia’s top Republican election officials have acknowledged that repeatedly in interviews. What there was, however, was record-setting turnout, especially by voters of color. Instead what we’re seeing here for politicians who didn’t like the outcome is they’re not changing their policies to win more votes, they’re changing the rules to exclude more voters, and we certainly see the circumstances as different. Ultimately, though, it’s up to Major League Baseball to determine where they’re holding their All-Star Game.”
Doocy, of course, isn’t the only Republican trying desperately to change the story from “Georgia wants to disenfranchise Black and brown voters and even corporate America is disgusted” to “corporate America should mind its own damn business.” On Monday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell warned that corporations should shut their traps or will suffer “consequences” for speaking out. Meanwhile, Senator Tim Scott has also adopted the (false) talking point that Colorado is just as bad as Georgia when it comes to voter laws:
Only, as CNN fact-checker Daniel Dale notes, Colorado’s election laws are wildly different than Georgia’s, for reasons that include but are not limited to the fact that:
- Colorado sends ballots to every active registered voter, whereas Georgia voters must send away for a ballot, and “the Secretary of State and other officials are now banned from even sending *applications* to everyone”;
- Georgia requires photo IDs to vote, while Colorado lets people use all kinds of non-photo IDs, including bank statements, bills, checks, and birth certificates;
- Colorado keeps its drop boxes open 24 hours a day until the night of Election Day, while Georgia’s now must be inside, are only available during early voting hours, and are closed the Friday before Election Day;
- Colorado lets people register to vote on Election Day, whereas the deadline in Georgia is approximately five weeks before Election Day;
- Colorado campaigns can give out food and drinks to people standing in line to vote as long as they‘re not wearing specific candidate/party swag; Georgia now prohibits giving out food or drinks to voters with 25 feet of the line, with the exception of self-serve water set out by election staff.
In other words, no, Colorado’s voter laws are not as restrictive as Georgia’s—not by a long shot—and anyone arguing they are is trying to distract from the fact that Georgia would prefer that only white people vote. Anyway, be sure to tune in for the next press briefing in which Doocy asks a question like, “Does President Biden agree that the current COVID crisis is his fault and his fault alone because he is the president?” and Psaki disembowels him on live TV.
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The executive vice president of the NRA also fears losing his life to gun violence
But instead of, say, renouncing the National Rifle Association and calling for the strengthening of gun control regulations, he hid out on a friend’s private yacht. Yes:
Embattled National Rifle Association chief Wayne LaPierre feared for his safety after mass shootings in recent years, forcing him to take refuge aboard a friend’s luxury yacht, the gun rights advocate testified. LaPierre made the admission in a deposition connected to the NRA’s bankruptcy case in Dallas. “They simply let me use it as a security retreat because they knew the threat that I was under. And I was basically under presidential threat without presidential security in terms of the number of threats I was getting,” LaPierre said.
“And all of us were struggling with how to deal with that type situation with a private citizen with the amount of threat that we were having. And this was the one place that I hope could feel safe, where I remember getting there going, ‘Thank God I’m safe, nobody can get me here.’ And that’s how it happened. That’s why I used it.”
So, that’s nice for him. Doesn’t help the school children and other people who’ve been murdered in mass shootings as a result of his work, but nice for him nonetheless!
Surprise: Most of the people who stormed the Capitol on January 6 didn’t do so because they were “economically anxious”
They did it because, wait for it, they were racist. Per The New York Times:
When the political scientist Robert Pape began studying the issues that motivated the 380 or so people arrested in connection with the attack against the Capitol on Jan. 6, he expected to find that the rioters were driven to violence by the lingering effects of the 2008 Great Recession. But instead he found something very different: Most of the people who took part in the assault came from places, his polling and demographic data showed, that were awash in fears that the rights of minorities and immigrants were crowding out the rights of white people in American politics and culture.
If Mr. Pape’s initial conclusions—published on Tuesday in The Washington Post—hold true, they would suggest that the Capitol attack has historical echoes reaching back to before the Civil War, he said in an interview over the weekend. In the shorter term, he added, the study would appear to connect Jan. 6 not only to the once-fringe right-wing theory called the Great Replacement, which holds that minorities and immigrants are seeking to take over the country, but also to events like the far-right rally in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017 where crowds of white men marched with torches chanting, “Jews will not replace us!”
“If you look back in history, there has always been a series of far-right extremist movements responding to new waves of immigration to the United States or to movements for civil rights by minority groups,” Pape told the Times, “You see a common pattern in the Capitol insurrectionists. They are mainly middle-class to upper-middle-class whites who are worried that, as social changes occur around them, they will see a decline in their status in the future.” Which is a long way of coming out and saying, “yeah, they’re just racist.”
Matt Gaetz turns alleged sex trafficking lemons into lemonade
The Florida congressman has asked supporters to chip in a few bucks to help him fight the “fake news” re: him allegedly having sex with a minor and transporting her across state lines, in addition to allegedly paying women for sex and providing them with receipts. Per TPM:
As the Gaetz scandal unfurls, the congressman has kept himself squarely in the spotlight. The congressman, who is reportedly being investigated for the possible sex trafficking of a minor, has happily given interviews and on-the-record quotes, penned op-eds and furiously retweeted supportive articles and takes from rightwing outlets. On Tuesday, he took that baffling P.R. strategy a step further as he sent out a fundraising blast to his supporters bemoaning the “smear campaign.”
“The far-left New York Times has been publishing salacious allegations against me in an attempt to end my career fighting for the forgotten men and women of this country,” the email read. “It is a shame that the Left tries to drag my dating life into their political attacks, but it’s no surprise—when your ideas suck, you have to stoop this low.” A big red button invites you to “CLICK HERE TO FIGHT BACK AGAINST THE FAKE NEWS,” which redirects to a donation page on Gaetz’s campaign website.
In an op-ed published on Monday, Gaetz, who has denied all allegations against him, said he will not be resigning from his post. In a separate op-ed, Katie Hill, his former colleague from across the aisle, wrote that “he should resign immediately” if “there is even a fraction of truth” to the reports, including the one about how he allegedly showed nude photos of women he’d supposedly slept with to colleagues on the House floor.
Senator Tom Cotton thinks the U.S. isn’t putting enough people in prison
U.S. considering joining boycott of 2022 Beijing Olympics, State Department says (CNBC)
Officials eye youth sports as possible engine of variant-driven outbreaks (Washington Post)
Texas to ban government-mandated “vaccine passports” (Washington Post)
California Sets June 15 Target to Fully Reopen Its Economy (Bloomberg)
Caitlyn Jenner is reportedly considering a run for California governor (Insider)
Former Trump HUD official fined, barred from government employment (Politico)
Man gets 12 years in prison after trying to buy deadly chemical weapon with bitcoin (CNBC)
The New Shortage: Ketchup Can’t Catch Up (WSJ)
Pandemic Disney World Guests Even More Rabid Than Normal Disney World Guests (Jezebel)
Jared Kushner is a 21-year-old college student. Jared Kushner also works in Canadian real estate. And they’re ready to reclaim their name from Donald Trump’s son-in-law. (Insider)
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