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US Monthly Headline News December 2021

The GOP wants to ban books there is nothing more cancel culture than banning books.

by Rebekah Sager, Daily Kos Staff

An Oklahoma state senator is pushing for two bills that would give parents the power to remove any book in a public school library they find objectionable. Meaning any book mentioning sex or the “study of sex, sexual preferences, sexual activity, sexual perversion, sex-based classifications, sexual identity, or gender identity,“ or books “that are of a sexual nature.” Republican state Sen. Rob Standridge, who is championing Senate Bill 1142, says it addresses the “indoctrination in Oklahoma schools.” “Our education system is not the place to teach moral lessons that should instead be left up to parents and families. Unfortunately, however, more and more schools are trying to indoctrinate students by exposing them to gender, sexual and racial identity curriculums and courses. My bills will ensure these types of lessons stay at home and out of the classroom,” Standridge said in a statement. more...

By Jason Lemon

The nonpartisan States United Democracy Center outlined Republican efforts to "subvert" free and fair elections, highlighting that more than 260 bills to interfere with elections have been put forward in states across the country, in a year-end report released this week. Former President Donald Trump and right-wing allies falsely claim that the 2020 election was "rigged" or "stolen" in favor of President Joe Biden. Pro-Trump Republicans have used that conspiracy theory to justify new voting and election reform legislation, which critics have warned could undermine the democratic process. more...

The charge, while provocative, offers a framework to reckon with systemic racial injustice — past and present.
Opinion by ALEX HINTON

Seventy years ago this month, on Dec. 17, 1951, the United Nations received a bold petition, delivered in two cities at once: Activist William Patterson presented the document to the U.N. assembly in Paris, while his comrade Paul Robeson, the famous actor and singer, did the same at the U.N. offices in New York. W.E.B. Du Bois, a leading Black intellectual, was among the petition’s signatories. The group was accusing the United States of genocide — specifically, genocide against Black people. The word “genocide” was only seven years old. It had been coined during World War II in a book about Nazi atrocities, and adopted by the United Nations in 1948, though no nation had yet been formally convicted of perpetrating a genocide. The 240-page petition, “We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People,” was meant to be sensational. America had been instrumental in prosecuting the Nazis at Nuremberg, and now its own citizens were turning the lens back on the U.S. in the most horrifying, accusatory terms. more...

Virginia Roberts Giuffre’s lawyers welcome Maxwell’s conviction, while sources close to Andrew tell The Daily Beast it “shouldn’t affect the prospects of Andrew’s case at all.”
Tom Sykes

The stunning guilty verdict against Ghislaine Maxwell Wednesday bodes ill for her good friend Prince Andrew’s chances of beating the rap in the case being brought against him by Jeffrey Epstein victim Virginia Roberts Giuffre, sources in Giuffre’s camp have told The Daily Beast. A source close to Andrew, however, have insisted that the crushing verdict, which will likely see Maxwell jailed for decades, “shouldn’t affect the prospects of Andrew’s case at all.” Indeed, according to the Mirror, while Andrew’s lawyers are “locked in emergency talks” following the Maxwell verdict, they appear more bullishly determined than ever, the outlet says, to paint Giuffre herself as a key enabler of the abuse Epstein oversaw. more...

Tucker Carlson’s talking points often sound identical to those pushed by the Kremlin’s propagandists—or by Putin himself

As Putin and Biden talk, Kremlin mouthpieces are rushing to explain the motivations behind Russia’s surge in aggression. Fox News is helping them do their work.
Julia Davis

President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin are set to speak on Thursday, in preparation for Jan. 10 talks, convened to address Putin’s demand for “security guarantees” that aims to stymie NATO’s ability to carry out its functions in Europe. Moscow’s elite diplomats and talking heads are openly discussing Russia’s goals and strategies. Arguing for America’s total capitulation, with the Kremlin allegedly planning to offer no concessions or guarantees, Russian experts propose a plan to make such an outcome acceptable to the general public in the U.S. by waging an aggressive international info-campaign. Russia’s state TV propagandists express their delight in seemingly having the likes of Tucker Carlson in their corner, praising his coverage as the prime example of Russia’s successful influence operations abroad. Carlson’s talking points often sound identical to those pushed by the Kremlin’s propagandists—or by Putin himself. more...

By Lauren del Valle, Steve Almasy and Ray Sanchez, CNN

New York (CNN)A jury in a New York federal court has found Ghislaine Maxwell guilty on five of six counts related to her role in Jeffrey Epstein's sexual abuse of minor girls between 1994 and 2004. Maxwell, 60, was found guilty of five federal charges: sex trafficking of a minor, transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and three related counts of conspiracy. She was acquitted on the charge of enticing a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts. Maxwell, who now faces up to 65 years in prison, showed no reaction when the verdicts were read. Judge Alison Nathan did not set a sentencing date. more...

By Sun Staff

Harry Reid never felt the need to be loud or brash. The former U.S. Senate majority leader who died today at age 82 instead often took a soft-spoken approach to politics that resulted in effective, lasting and historic results. The Searchlight native represented Nevada for 30 years in the Senate, where his even-keeled approach was vital in helping broker the Affordable Care Act, thwarting a proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain and fostering laws to preserve public lands and encourage clean energy investment. Along the way he became a key player in the Democratic Party, encouraging then-Sen. Barack Obama to run for president and advocating for immigration reform. Following Reid's retirement in 2017, he continued to wield power from behind the scenes, advising candidates running for office and remaining outspoken on current affairs. more...

ESPN News Services

John Madden, the Hall of Fame coach turned broadcaster whose exuberant calls combined with simple explanations provided a weekly soundtrack to NFL games for three decades, died Tuesday morning, the NFL said. He was 85. The league said he died unexpectedly and did not detail a cause. Madden gained fame in a decadelong stint as the coach of the renegade Oakland Raiders, making it to seven AFC title games and winning the Super Bowl following the 1976 season. He compiled a 103-32-7 regular-season record, and his .759 winning percentage is the best among NFL coaches with more than 100 games. more...

Under the pseudonym “Brant Danger,” a white Arizona schoolteacher is riding the wave of panic over critical race theory in a mission to indoctrinate white kids across America.
Mark Hay

The School of the West, a recently launched online “educational resource for homeschooling parents,” offers a smattering of materials—some free, some only for paying members—to help teach kids standard subjects like math, science, and language arts. But its key selling point is a unique and deeply disturbing field of study that the site has dubbed “White Wellbeing.”

A write-up on the contents of an upcoming three-month live-streamed white wellbeing course, advertised for students ages four and older, explains that it will help children “understand the gift of being born a member of Westernkind and the qualities that separate us from the other races.” In case it wasn’t clear, the write-up later clarifies that “the White race is known as Westernkind.” It also promises to teach them how to spot and respond to the “anti-white propaganda” that supposedly suffuses modern life, why white people are the only true citizens of Western nations, and how “feminism destroys the family unit,” the supposed backbone of all Westernkind, “thus weakening our societies.” more...

Ben Wieder and Julie K. Brown | McClatchy Washington Bureau

Donald Trump appears to have flown on Jeffrey Epstein’s private jets six more times than was previously known, according to flight logs released as evidence in Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial. Previous disclosures of portions of Epstein’s flight log have shown world leaders, billionaires and celebrities among the many passengers who have flown on Epstein’s private jets. Donald Trump and his ex-wife Ivana Trump are seen together watching the men's singles finals match at the U.S. Open in New York Sunday, Sept. 7, 1997. The new log released as evidence in Maxwell’s case stretches back earlier than previous releases. more...

By Sophie Reardon

The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles withdrew its recommendation of a posthumous pardon for George Floyd, along with 24 others, after finding procedural errors within its submission, the governor's office said Thursday. Floyd, who grew up in Houston, was killed last year by Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer. Renae Eze, a spokesperson for Governor Greg Abbott's office, said the board will review the errors related to the applications and that the governor "did not have the opportunity to consider it." In October, the board recommended Floyd's pardon for a drug conviction. Floyd was arrested in Houston for selling $10 worth of crack in a police sting in February 2004, and later pleaded guilty to a drug charge and served 10 months in prison, the Associated Press reported. But prosecutors revisited his case after a deadly Houston drug raid in 2019 that involved the same officer who arrested Floyd. more...

Don Moynihan, Wisconsin Examiner

‘Tis the holiday season and the heroes of Fox News are valiantly arraying their forces in the War On Christmas, even as ICU beds are filling up and a new strain of COVID has arrived. In the spirit of the season I am making a special plea to Rupert Murdoch to deliver a Christmas miracle: stop killing us. That’s it, that’s the tweet. Wait, this is an article? I have to write more. OK then.

The partisan COVID gap has gotten worse

Republicans have been more reluctant to get vaccinated and more likely to die as a result. This trend was obfuscated initially because COVID emerged in blue states on the coasts, and because conservatives had at least some stake in dampening the pandemic when Trump was still president. As those conditions have disappeared, the partisan divide has become undeniable. more...

By Matt Egan, CNN Business

New York (CNN Business) Senator Joe Manchin is facing calls from a powerful group close to his heart to reconsider his opposition to the Build Back Better Act: Coal miners. A day after the West Virginia Democrat appeared to kill Build Back Better, America's largest coal mining union put out a statement lauding the legislation's provisions and pushing Manchin to take a do-over. "We are disappointed that the bill will not pass," Cecil Roberts, president of the United Mine Workers of America, said in the statement on Monday. "We urge Senator Manchin to revisit his opposition to this legislation and work with his colleagues to pass something that will help keep coal miners working, and have a meaningful impact on our members, their families and their communities." The 131-year-old UMWA called out several items that it believes are crucial to its members and communities, including extending the fee paid by coal companies to fund benefits received by victims of black lung. more...

Did Joe Manchin play the democrats? First Manchin got the democrats to cut the bill in half then said he would not vote for it. Yes Joe Manchin played the democrats.

The West Virginia senator wants a new bill that goes through Senate committees and focuses on rolling back the 2017 Trump tax cuts.
By BURGESS EVERETT

Joe Manchin has some advice for fellow Democrats: rebuild Build Back Better and you might still get my vote. One day after sinking President Joe Biden’s signature social and climate spending legislation, Manchin (D-W.Va.) laid out a path forward that could take months and still fail. He wants the legislation to go through Senate committees and focus on rolling back the 2017 Trump tax cuts. He also wants Democrats to stop trying to force him into compliance. “I knew what they could and could not do. They just never realized it, because they figure surely to God we can move one person. Surely, we can badger and beat one person up,” Manchin said on West Virginia MetroNews, his first response to the blowback he’s taken from the White House and Democrats for tanking Biden’s signature legislation. more...

ByBrenton Blanchet

A new study has found that fully vaccinated people who are then infected with COVID-19 may acquire a “super immunity” to future variants of the virus, NBC Chicago reports. The Oregon Health & Science University study, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, has discovered that antibodies in breakthrough case blood samples were at most 1,000% more effective than the antibodies found in non-infected blood samples taken two weeks after a Pfizer vaccination. The study collected blood samples from 52 university employees who had the Pfizer vaccine, and of the 26 of them who had mild breakthrough infections, 10 had the Delta variant, nine were described as non-Delta, and 7 had unknown variants. A breakthrough infection “generates a robust immune response against the delta variant,” according to the summary of findings, and researchers believe that responses will be similar to other variants like Omicron. more...

Tom Boggioni

According to a report from Newsweek's David Freedman, supporters of Donald Trump are already looking past the 2022 midterms and making rumblings that they will not react peacefully if the former president makes a third bid for the White House and loses again. In an interview with 73-year-old Vietnam vet Mike Nieznany of Gainesville, Georgia, he called the situation a "ticking time-bomb" and responses to his online comments -- which "received 44,000 views in the first two weeks of November and more than 4 million overall" -- indicated he is not alone with that assessment. According to Nieznany, like-minded people are arming themselves in anticipation of what could happen in 2024 that could "trigger" far-right fans of the ex-president. more...

Terry H. Schwadron, DCReport @ RawStory

By now, we’ve all heard and considered the graceless manner in which Sen. Joe Manchin (D-VW) went on television on Sunday to announce he is personally killing Joe Biden’s big spending bill labeled Build Back Better. After months of dawdling, negotiating, whittling, spinning, and otherwise trying to get everyone else in his party to turn around his central star, Manchin simply said no more. And he said it publicly first, not even giving a stunned White House notice. Of the many questions one might ask, here are two: Can Democrats put separate, more targeted bills together towards a similar, but different set of goals? Prospects are slim, because they still need support from Republicans even for items like extending child tax credits, support that will never be forthcoming. more...

Did Manchin play the democrats? Did he ever plan to vote for it?

By Daniella Diaz, CNN

(CNN) Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia said he's a no on the Build Back Better Act, a huge development for legislation where Democrats need his vote to be able to pass this through the Senate.
Manchin has always been a key holdout for the legislation, sharing concerns over certain provisions in the economic bill that would expand the nation's social safety net and how it may exacerbate soaring inflation in the country. "And I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. I just can't. I've tried everything humanly possible. I can't get there," he said on "Fox News Sunday." "This is a no on this legislation. I have tried everything I know to do. more...

BY ALEXANDRA HUTZLER

Aquote of Donald Trump talking about the Fifth Amendment has resurfaced as his allies use it with the House of Representatives select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection. On the campaign trail in 2016, Trump bashed Hillary Clinton after some members of her staff invoked the amendment during a congressional investigation. "You see the mob takes the Fifth," he said during one rally in Iowa. "If you're innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?" more...

While Trump may be hard to beat in 2024, McConnell’s talent is remaining on top of the GOP conference.
Matt Lewis

When it comes to pulling off coups in 2021, Donald Trump is 0 for 2. The latest, of course, being his failed effort to depose Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. I recently documented how Trump’s political endorsements don’t matter much in the outside game of GOP primary elections. It turns out, neither do his condemnations in the inside game of Senate leadership contests. At least, that’s what this Politico headline suggests: “GOP blows off Trump’s bid to oust McConnell.” more...

Chris Arnold, Robert Benincasa, Mary Childs

Money is tight for Mary Hunt. She often has to decide which bills to pay on time — heat, her car loan, the phone bill. But she's been able to scrape by for more than 30 years, living in a mobile home park in Swartz Creek, Mich. She owns her home outright. But she needs to pay monthly "lot rent" to the park for the little patch of land that it sits on. And the managers of the park, a couple named Stan and Nancy, used to live right here. "I would call up and say, 'Hey, look, I've got half the rent,'" Hunt says, "I'll bring the rest, you know, next week or whatever." Stan and Nancy would say okay. So she could make it work, even earning just $10 an hour at her job driving elderly patients to doctor's appointments. more...

Shalini Nagarajan

A Tesla shareholder has filed a lawsuit against the electric-vehicle maker over Elon Musk's tweets on selling 10% of his stock and snubbing Sen. Elizabeth Warren. The lawsuit was filed by investor David Wagner in the Delaware Court of Chancery on Thursday, according to Bloomberg Law. His litigation, according to Bloomberg's report, called for an investigation into whether Musk continues to tweet carelessly in violation of a 2019 agreement, which requires any of his communication about Tesla over social media to be pre-approved by a securities lawyer. It also expressed concern over the impact of his tweets on Tesla's stock. more...

Arwa Mahdawi

A relatively small but incredibly organized faction is working to turn the country into something resembling a theocracy. Forget everything you ever thought you knew about pregnancy: a 26-year-old congressman, who will never be pregnant himself, has helpfully stepped in to explain the process to everyone. A fetus is just like a photograph, according to Madison Cawthorn, a rightwing congressman from North Carolina. During an anti-abortion speech on the House floor last week, Cawthorn proclaimed that having an abortion is like snatching a half-developed photograph of a sunset out of someone’s hand and ripping it to shreds. (You could almost see his brain working as he spoke: a photo develops … an embryo develops … wow, I am very smart!) more...

By Jake Tapper and Jamie Gangel, CNN

Washington (CNN) Members of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US Capitol believe that former Texas Governor and Trump Energy Secretary Rick Perry was the author of a text message sent to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows the day after the 2020 election pushing an "AGRESSIVE (sic) STRATEGY" for three state legislatures to ignore the will of their voters and deliver their states' electors to Donald Trump, three sources familiar with the House Committee investigation tell CNN. A spokesman for Perry told CNN that the former Energy Secretary denies being the author of the text. Multiple people who know Rick Perry confirmed to CNN that the phone number the committee has associated with that text message is Perry's number. more...

Anderson Cooper 360

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) forwarded a text message to former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows on January 5, outlining a legal theory that then-Vice President Mike Pence had the authority to stand in the way of the certification of the 2020 election. video...

The White House repeatedly overruled public health and testing guidance from the nation’s top infectious disease experts and silenced officials, the report found.
By Rebecca Shabad

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration engaged in “deliberate efforts” to undermine the U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic for political purposes, a congressional report released Friday concludes. The report, prepared by the House select subcommittee investigating the nation’s Covid response, says the White House repeatedly overruled public health and testing guidance by the nation’s top infectious disease experts and silenced officials in order to promote then-President Donald Trump's political agenda. In August of last year, for example, Trump hosted a White House meeting with people who promoted a herd immunity strategy pushed by White House special adviser Dr. Scott Atlas. The subcommittee obtained an email sent ahead of that meeting in which Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House Covid response coordinator, told the vice president’s chief of staff, Marc Short, that it was “a fringe group without grounding in epidemics, public health or on the ground common sense experience.” Birx also said in the email that she could “go out of town or whatever gives the WH cover” on the day of the meeting. more...

Trump said  "If you're innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?" Is Roger Stone guilty or trying to hide something?

Claudia Grisales

Controversial political operative Roger Stone appeared Friday before the Democrat-led House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, saying he would assert his Fifth Amendment rights in response to questioning from the panel. "I don't like to see the criminalization of constitutionally protected political activity," Stone said as he left the U.S. Capitol after pleading the Fifth. "I think it's a slippery slope." He made no remarks earlier as he headed into the O'Neill House Office Building near the Capitol complex several minutes before his deposition, which was set for 10 a.m. Members of Stone's entourage awaited him in the lobby after he entered the building's secured entrance. more...

Rick Rouan | USA TODAY

The congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol ramped up its pressure on a key member of former President Donald Trump's inner circle this week – all while revealing more about the chaos that unfolded that day. The House approved a resolution Tuesday asking that former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows be charged with contempt of Congress after he refused to testify before the committee, citing executive privilege. more...

A judge says that a $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought against Fox News by Dominion Voting Systems can go forward
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- A judge Thursday rejected a motion by Fox News to dismiss a $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought against the cable news giant by Dominion Voting Systems over claims about the 2020 presidential election. In the 52-page ruling Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis said that the voting machine company had shown that “At this stage, it is reasonably conceivable that Dominion has a claim for defamation per se.” Denver-based Dominion filed a lawsuit earlier this year against the media organization alleging that some Fox News employees elevated false charges that Dominion had changed votes in the 2020 election through algorithms in its voting machines that had been created in Venezuela to rig elections for the late dictator Hugo Chavez. On-air personalities brought on Trump allies who spread the claims, and then amplified those claims on Fox News' social media platforms. more...

By Kyle Cheney

As Donald Trump and his allies squeezed then-Vice President Mike Pence to single-handedly stop Joe Biden’s presidency in the weeks ahead of Jan. 6, they used one particular tool that’s been largely ignored ever since. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) sued Pence on Dec. 27 , just as Trump was ratcheting up his pressure campaign against his vice president. Backed by a squad of lawyers associated with Trump ally and conspiracy theorist Sidney Powell, Gohmert argued Pence should assert unilateral control over certification, governed only by the vague wording of the Twelfth Amendment.

Gohmert’s move forced Pence to publicly resist Trump’s subversion of the election, only a week before the fateful Jan. 6 joint session of Congress. When the Justice Department stepped in to defend Pence from the lawsuit on Dec. 29, it marked the first time Pence signaled he wouldn’t fold to Trump’s demands. more...

Joker malware, which surreptitiously signs up users to pricey services, strikes again.
Dan Goodin

An Android app with more than 500,000 downloads from Google Play has been caught hosting malware that surreptitiously sends users’ contacts to an attacker-controlled server and signs up users to pricey subscriptions, a security firm reported. The app, named Color Message, was still available on Google servers at the time this post was being prepared. Google removed it more than three hours after I asked the company for comment. Ostensibly, Color Message enhances text messaging by doing things such as adding emojis and blocking junk texts. But according to researchers at Pradeo Security said on Thursday, Color Message contains a family of malware known as Joker, which has infected millions of Android devices in the past. more...

By Dominick Mastrangelo

A leading North Caroline newspaper is blasting former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, calling the Republican who previously served in Congress an embarrassment to the state. "When will the N.C. Republican Party censure Mark Meadows?" The News and Observer asked in an editorial published on Wednesday. "The answer, of course, is never. But that won’t hide the embarrassment that Meadows is for his party or for the state he represented in Congress for seven years." more...

Don Lemon Tonight

SE Cupp reacts to texts sent from Fox News personalities to former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows during the January 6 riot on the Capitol. video...

Fox News' cared more about a Christmas tree fire than they did about the Capitol riot and Trump coup attempt.

Don Lemon Tonight

CNN's Brianna Keilar compares Fox News' outrage over the Christmas tree arson that took place outside of the network's headquarters during the holiday season and the armed attack on the Capitol on January 6th. video...

By Eyewitness News

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- New York City Mayor-elect Eric Adams announced Keechant Sewell as his pick for NYPD police commissioner on Wednesday morning. Sewell, 49, will be the first woman police commissioner of the department. "I bring a different perspective to make sure the department looks like the city it serves," she said. Mayor-elect Eric Adams had long said the next police commissioner would be a woman, but Sewell was a surprise choice. more...

Sen. Graham’s false claim about Build Back Better adding $3 trillion in deficits
Jon Greenberg, Louis Jacobson

Republicans have been highlighting a recent government estimate of what they say is the true cost of the Democrats’ Build Back Better bill, which includes major spending on child care and child tax credits. On Fox News Sunday, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told departing host Chris Wallace that the bill is far more expensive than Democrats claim, and the money it raises falls trillions short of covering the cost. "The Congressional Budget Office says it's not paid for," Graham said Dec. 12. "It's $3 trillion of deficit spending." Graham is incorrect. The bill passed by the House and now in the Senate’s hands costs about $1.75 trillion, and, according to CBO figures, would add $158 billion to the deficit over 10 years, not $3 trillion. (President Joe Biden and other Democrats say even that smaller deficit would evaporate thanks to IRS crackdowns on tax evaders.) more...

By Evan Perez and Adrienne Broaddus, CNN

(CNN) Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who was convicted in April on state murder charges for killing George Floyd, pleaded guilty to federal civil rights charges at a change of plea hearing Wednesday in US District Court in St. Paul, Minnesota. Chauvin also admitted guilt in a separate case in which he was accused of using similar tactics on a Minneapolis 14-year-old in 2017. As part of the plea agreement, prosecutors are requesting that Chauvin be sentenced to 300 months in prison, or 25 years, to be served concurrently with his 22 and a half year sentence on state murder charges. more...

Meadows, Steve Bannon and Roger Stone are using the classic Trump playbook to try to bury the truth about the insurrection, but it won't work.
By Michael Conway, former counsel, U.S. House Judiciary Committee

The effort by loyalists of former President Donald Trump to subvert the rule of law didn’t end with his presidential administration. By defying subpoenas issued by the House selectc ommittee investigating the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol, withholding documents, invoking the Fifth Amendment and performing other acts of noncooperation, they are acting as though Congress and the courts can simply be ignored. But the committee is playing hardball with these recalcitrant witnesses. On Tuesday, the House turned up the heat on Mark Meadows, who served as chief of staff to Trump. It found him in contempt for not answering questions to do with the investigation, referring him to the Justice Department for possible criminal charges. And Meadows is not the only one facing punishment: Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon has already been indicted on (and pleaded not guilty to) two counts of criminal contempt of Congress. more...

Leslie Josephs

Airline executives will face questions from a Senate panel on Wednesday about flight disruptions and staffing shortfalls despite the $54 billion in taxpayer aid they took to help cover labor costs during the pandemic slump in air travel. The CEOs of American Airlines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines and Delta’s chief of operations will say the aid helped them survive the crisis and that they’re now ramping up hiring, according to written testimony for the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing. more...

By Darragh Roche

Republican members of Congress appear to have conspired with former President Donald Trump 's administration in efforts to prevent the certification of President Joe Biden 's 2020 election victory, according to text messages revealed by the House Select Committee investigating January 6. The select committee released texts from as-yet unnamed lawmakers to former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows on Monday before the panel voted unanimously to recommend contempt charges against him. Those messages appear to show the lawmakers supporting a plan to object to the certification of Electoral College votes on January 6 where then Vice President Mike Pence would have played a key role. more...

It's not just the texts. As part of the Jan. 6 investigation, Liz Cheney raised the prospect of criminal misconduct from Team Trump and its allies.
By Steve Benen

Just a few days after the Jan. 6 attack, Andrew McCabe, the former deputy director of the FBI, and David Williams, the former inspector general for five federal agencies, wrote a joint op-ed for Politico that raised a few eyebrows. As we discussed at the time, McCabe and Williams said Donald Trump could face criminal charges for inciting a riot, noting that it's a federal crime to "endeavor to persuade" another person to commit a felony that includes the threat or use of physical force. The Washington Post reported soon after that the then-president's legal advisers "expressed increasing concern" about the Republican's "possible criminal liability." The article added that Trump had been told by attorneys "that he could face legal jeopardy for inciting a mob." An adviser close to Trump told CNN the then-president was "worried about" being prosecuted. We now know, of course, that nothing came of this. But what if there were a different area of criminal liability for the former president related to his anti-election efforts? more...

By Maeve Reston, CNN

(CNN) The former state employee who is at the center of the controversy over whether South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem intervened to help her daughter obtain a real estate appraiser license testified before state lawmakers on Tuesday that Noem's daughter was given an extra chance to correct her work so that her application would not be denied and that the state's process for handling her application was unusual. Sherry Bren, the former executive director of the South Dakota Appraiser Certification Program, was called to a July 27, 2020, meeting with Noem and found that Noem's daughter, Kassidy Peters, who was applying to become a state-certified real estate appraiser at that time, was also present along with other top state officials including the state's Secretary of Labor. Before that point, Peters had experienced difficulty meeting the state's criteria to complete the process because of deficiencies in her work, documents obtained by CNN have shown. more...

Analysis by Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large

(CNN) They knew. They all knew. The release of texts on Monday night sent to former Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on January 6 amount to a smoking gun when it comes to whether those in and around the President were aware of the rising insurrection of that day and the role then-President Donald Trump himself needed to play. There was Donald Trump Jr.: "He's got to condemn this sh*t ASAP."

And Sean Hannity: "Can he make a statement? Ask people to leave the Capitol?" And Laura Ingraham: "Mark, the president needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home. This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy." And Brian Kilmeade: "Please, get him on TV. Destroying everything you have accomplished." There can be no doubt that, in the moment, those who had Trump's ear -- from his eldest son to his enablers on Fox News -- were not only aware of what was happening at the US Capitol, but also were pressuring Meadows (and presumably Trump) to do something about it. more...

Ryan Lucas

The District of Columbia is suing the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers for allegedly conspiring to terrorize the city with the violent attack on Jan. 6 on the U.S. Capitol. The civil lawsuit was filed by the District's attorney general, Karl Racine, in federal court in Washington, D.C. It accuses the two far-right groups, their leaders and certain associates of coordinating and plotting violence on Jan. 6 to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power. "In the complaint, we specifically allege that these vigilantes, insurrectionists and masters of a lawless mob conspired against the District of Columbia, its law enforcement officers and residents by planning, promoting and participating in the violent attack on the United States Capitol," Racine told reporters on Tuesday. more...

Claudia Grisales

The Democratic-led House select committee investigating the Capitol attack has voted to hold Mark Meadows in criminal contempt of Congress, sending to the full House a referral for the former Trump White House chief of staff to face a criminal charge. The Monday night vote was months in the making. Meadows had initially cooperated with the panel and turned over thousands of emails and text messages, but he reversed course last week, saying a day before he was due to appear for a deposition that he would no longer be cooperating with the probe. Ahead of the vote, the panel's ranking Republican, Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, read a litany of text messages she said Meadows received during the Jan. 6 siege, urging him to get then-President Donald Trump to tell his supporters to leave the Capitol. more...

Fox News, right wing media and the GOP blamed Antifa and BLM even though they knew it was Trump supporters who attacked the capitol.

House investigators held Mark Meadows in criminal contempt after releasing a trove of messages aimed at getting President Trump to take stronger action amid the Capitol riot.
By NICHOLAS WU and KYLE CHENEY

As rioters swarmed the Capitol, President Donald Trump’s eldest son pleaded with White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to get his father to do more to end the violence. “He’s got to condemn this [shit] Asap. The Capitol Police tweet is not enough,” Donald Trump Jr. texted, one of a series of messages Meadows provided to the Jan. 6 select committee investigating the former president’s effort to overturn the election. The text message was one of a handful described and released by the committee on Monday from the trove shared by Meadows that showed lawmakers, aides and even Fox News hosts pleading with Meadows to press Trump to take stronger action. After they described the messages, the panel held Meadows in criminal contempt of Congress for refusing to testify to investigators. The matter now goes to the full House, which is expected to refer Meadows to the Justice Department on Tuesday. more...

Travis Gettys

As revelations that White House officials communicated with Republican lawmakers about a plan to disrupt the certification of Joe Biden's election win, some of Sen. Marco Rubio's words are coming back to haunt him. The Florida Republican challenged Donald Trump in the 2016 primary campaign, and he warned the former reality TV star would do great harm to the nation -- and likely lead to the loss of life -- if he won the GOP nomination and the presidency. “I’m very concerned about that," Rubio told CNN in March 2016. "We don’t know what’s going to happen next here. I know that we’ve reached the point where people in American politics have decided that if they don’t agree with you, they can get angry at you, that you’re a bad and evil person, that they can say anything they want about you.” more...

Researchers claim Chinese government groups are among the perpetrators
Hannah Murphy

Hackers including Chinese state-backed groups have launched more than 1.2 million attacks on companies globally since last Friday, according to researchers, through a previously unnoticed vulnerability in a widely used piece of open-source software called Log4J. Cyber security group Check Point said the attacks relating to the vulnerability had accelerated since Friday, and that at some points its researchers were seeing more than 100 attacks a minute. Perpetrators include “Chinese government attackers”, according to Charles Carmakal, chief technology officer of cyber company Mandiant. The flaw in Log4J allows attackers to easily gain remote control over computers running apps in Java, a popular programming language. more...

Exclusive: At least eight people died in the Mayfield Consumer Products candle factory. Its destruction has become a symbol of the tornado's ruinous power.
By Deon J. Hampton

MAYFIELD, Ky. — As a catastrophic tornado approached this city Friday, employees of a candle factory — which would later be destroyed — heard the warning sirens and wanted to leave the building. But at least five workers said supervisors warned employees that they would be fired if they left their shifts early. For hours, as word of the coming storm spread, as many as 15 workers beseeched managers to let them take shelter at their own homes, only to have their requests rebuffed, the workers said. Fearing for their safety, some left during their shifts regardless of the repercussions. At least eight people died in the Mayfield Consumer Products factory, which makes scented candles. The facility was leveled, and all that is left is rubble. Photos and videos of its widespread mangled remains have become symbols of the enormous destructive power of Friday’s tornado system. more...

Travis Gettys

Donald Trump has effectively deputized a "mob" of vigilantes who are intimidating elected officials and civilians across the country, according to one conservative. Armed extremists have threatened citizens arrests of public officials and others in various states in an intimidation campaign that bears strong similarities to the Jan. 6 insurrection, and The Bulwark's Mona Charen said that's no coincidence. "Stories of threats and violence aimed at ordinary Americans who are simply serving on school boards, supervising elections, holding public office, opening a mobile vaccine clinic, or having the effrontery to be elected as secretary of state are not new," Charen wrote. "It’s a mashup of pandemic-induced mania, social media misinformation, Trump-incited disinhibition, and something in the water." more...

Fox news caught down playing Hannity and Ingraham's Jan. 6 hypocrisy.

By Brian Stelter, CNN Business

Fox News did not bother to air Monday night's meeting of the House committee investigating the 1/6 attack. Neither did Newsmax or One America News. So right-wing TV audiences did not hear when Rep. Liz Cheney revealed that some of Fox's biggest stars pressed Mark Meadows for help during the siege of the Capitol. "Mark, the president needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home," Laura Ingraham texted Meadows. "This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy."

She knew. They all knew. They all knew the truth right away. But by the night of 1/6, Ingraham was spouting conspiracy theories about "ANTIFA" and excusing the peaceful "patriots" who, let's be clear, paraded into DC based on a lie she pushed over and over again. Fox's pro-Trump programming was partly to blame for the Big Lie, so when that lie led to violence, of course some of the hosts panicked and tried to put out the fire. more...

Fox news caught misleading the public on the January 6 coup attempt and attack on our government.

Tom Porter

Text messages released by the January 6 committee on Monday showed that Fox News hosts were among those urging the former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows of to get Trump to call off his supporters as they swarmed the Capitol. Their efforts then are in stark contrast with the message they gave to their viewers on the day of the riot. Sean Hannity, a longtime friend and confidante to Trump, texted Meadows in a bid to get Trump to call off his supporters. "Can he make a statement. Ask people to leave the Capitol," read Hannity's message. more...

Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and Brian Kilmeade expressed alarm, concern, according to messages shared during House select committee hearing
By Jeremy Barr

Three Fox News hosts who have been among Donald Trump’s most ardent media boosters were so horrified by the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol that they begged the then-president’s chief of staff to convince him to intercede, according to newly aired messages from that day. “Mark, the president needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home,” Fox News prime-time star Laura Ingraham texted Mark Meadows. “This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy.” The text messages were read aloud by Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) during a Monday night hearing of the House select committee investigating the events of Jan. 6, which voted to hold Meadows in criminal contempt for defying a subpoena to appear before the committee. more...

Jeff Cox

Wholesale prices increased at their quickest pace on record in November in the latest sign that the inflation pressures bedeviling the economy are still present, the Labor Department reported Tuesday. The producer price index for final demand products increased 9.6% over the previous 12 months after rising another 0.8% in November. Economists had been looking for an annual gain of 9.2%, according to FactSet. more...

Don Lemon Tonight

CNN's Don Lemon weighs in on text messages from lawmakers, Fox News hosts and Donald Trump Jr. to former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows during the January 6 Capitol Hill riot. video...

BBC News

Donald Trump's son sent the White House chief-of-staff frantic texts calling for his father to intervene during the Capitol riot on 6 January.

A committee investigating the violence was shown messages from Donald Trump Jr to Mark Meadows, saying the deadly riot had "gotten out of hand". He was one of several senior political and media figures who text Mr Meadows with their concerns. The president was criticised for not intervening early on in the riot. He did eventually urge his supporters to "go home", but not before the pro-Trump mob had stormed the Capitol building, where Congress were meeting to certify Joe Biden's presidential election win. In the newly-revealed messages to Mr Meadows, Mr Trump Jr used strong terms to suggest his father should act. more...

Ravie Lakshmanan

Romanian cybersecurity technology company Bitdefender on Monday revealed that attempts are being made to target Windows machines with a novel ransomware family called Khonsari as well as a remote access Trojan named Orcus by exploiting the recently disclosed critical Log4j vulnerability. The attack leverages the remote code execution flaw to download an additional payload, a .NET binary, from a remote server that encrypts all the files with the extension ".khonsari" and displays a ransom note that urges the victims to make a Bitcoin payment in exchange for recovering access to the files. more...

Sarah K. Burris

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to issue an injunction against the state of New York and other states that have mandated that healthcare workers get a COVID-19 vaccine. However, there was no exception for religious objections, which Justices Neil Gorsuch and Samuel Alito took issue with in their dissents. ACLU attorney Josh Block called out Gorsuch and Alito for hypocrisy in claiming that such vaccine mandates were potentially discriminatory against Christians. "This record practically exudes suspicion of those who hold unpopular religious beliefs," the justices argued. "That alone is sufficient to render the mandate unconstitutional as applied to these applicants." more...

sarah toce

In a column published Tuesday, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh faced criticism for arguing that America's highest court had reversed itself in the past. His comments came as the Supreme Court could possibly overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark decision upholding a woman's constitutional right to have an abortion. Politico's Kimberly Whele accused Kavanaugh of neglecting "to point out a notable fact" about the times the Supreme Court has walked back on precedent.

She noted that during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing in 2018, then-circuit judge Kavanaugh was asked by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) if Roe v Wade was "settled law... or can it be overturned?" Kavanaugh's response was that "it is settled as precedent under the Supreme Court. One of the important things to keep in mind about Roe v. Wade is it has been reaffirmed many times over the years, as you know.” more...

Exclusive: At least eight people died in the Mayfield Consumer Products candle factory. Its destruction has become a symbol of the tornado's ruinous power.
By Deon J. Hampton

MAYFIELD, Ky. — As a catastrophic tornado approached this city Friday, employees of a candle factory — which would later be destroyed — heard the warning sirens and wanted to leave the building. But at least five workers said supervisors warned employees that they would be fired if they left their shifts early. For hours, as word of the coming storm spread, as many as 15 workers beseeched managers to let them take shelter at their own homes, only to have their requests rebuffed, the workers said. Fearing for their safety, some left during their shifts regardless of the repercussions. more...

Bob Brigham

Controversial Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) has spent days receiving criticism for her bigoted remarks about Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN). In a video that went viral, Boebert told a story suggesting Omar, who is Muslim, should be considered a potential suicide-bombing terrorist. She said Omar belonged to the "Jihad Squad." On Tuesday, CNN broadcast new video showing that Boebert told a similar story — with enough differences to draw the credibility of both of her accounts into question. more...

Sarah K. Burris

Rolling Stone obtained text messages that show the coordination between Jan. 6 attackers of the U.S. Capitol and to former President Donald Trump's White House. According to the report, rally organizer Amy Kremer was focusing on food instead of what was happening down the street of her hotel at the U.S. Capitol. Among other things, Kremer is the founder of Women For America First and is a long-time tea party activist. Kremer's text messages made it clear that she was speaking with the White House for events that happened after Trump's loss in November. First, she hosted the March for Trump bus tour that would come to Washington to protest the president's loss. more...

By Isabel van Brugen

Mark Meadows, former chief of staff to Donald Trump , allegedly worked on creating a fake electoral college following the 2020 presidential election. That's according to a contempt report released Sunday night by the House of Representatives panel investigating the January 6 Capitol riot. The report comes just days after Meadows launched legal proceedings against the panel and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi . Meadows filed a lawsuit in a Washington, D.C. federal court on December 8 after the committee said it would proceed with a contempt case against him for his refusal to appear for a deposition. Among other issues, the committee said Meadows sent emails and texts about sending "alternate electors" to Congress in November 2020, allegedly saying "I love it" about the idea to an unidentified member of Congress. more...

Travis Gettys

The Missouri Republican grossly distorted the facts during a Senate hearing on the ongoing harassment of school board members around the country over COVID-19 safety measures and anti-racism lessons, and the "Morning Joe" host piggybacked off Hawley's grandstanding remarks to calling for his prosecution. "I've got to say, frankly, I can't believe Josh Hawley's sitting there because he should be in jail," Scarborough said. "Why is Josh Hawley not in jail? A guy that committed sedition against the United States of America, he churned up the rioters when they were coming up there, a guy who still voted with the seditionists and the rioters, voted with the anarchists, voted with the people who were smearing excrement all over the walls of the Capitol." more...

Sarah K. Burris

Steve Bannon turned himself in to the police on Monday after being indicted on criminal contempt charges for blowing off a subpoena issued by the House Select Committee investigating the January 6th Capitol riots. Talking about Bannon's appearance, MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace and former Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) mocked Trump for making someone who was constantly "disheveled" as his White House's top political strategist. "First of all, I think there's something that is hysterically funny about the fact that Donald Trump, who was so focused on how people looked, that they are perfectly groomed and specially cast for the part," said McCaskill. "And this slob, this disheveled slob is his face — nobody cutting a swath of handsomeness and crisply tailored suits. This guy looks like he just rolled out of bed with a hangover. It is ridiculous that this is the face of Donald Trump." more...

Katie Wedell | USA TODAY

In 1921, Canadian scientist Frederick Banting discovered insulin and later sold the patent to the University of Toronto for $1, declaring that the lifesaving drug did not belong to him. "It belongs to the world." One hundred years later, the 8.4 million diabetics in the USA who rely on insulin pay an exorbitant amount of money for a drug that supposedly belongs to them. more...

By Zachary Cohen, Paul LeBlanc and Colin McCullough, CNN

Washington (CNN) Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows sent an email saying the National Guard would be present to 'protect pro Trump people' in the lead up to the US Capitol insurrection, according to a new contempt report released by the January 6 committee Sunday night. It was just one of several new details in the report about Meadows' actions before and during January 6, as well as his role in attempting to overturn the 2020 election. The resolution comes after the panel informed Meadows last week that it had "no choice" but to advance criminal contempt proceedings against him given that he had decided to no longer cooperate. more...

Ravie Lakshmanan

At least 17 malware-laced packages have been discovered on the NPM package Registry, adding to a recent barrage of malicious software hosted and delivered through open-source software repositories such as PyPi and RubyGems. DevOps firm JFrog said the libraries, now taken down, were designed to grab Discord access tokens and environment variables from users' computers as well as gain full control over a victim's system. "The packages' payloads are varied, ranging from infostealers up to full remote access backdoors," researchers Andrey Polkovnychenko and Shachar Menashe said in a report published Wednesday. "Additionally, the packages have different infection tactics, including typosquatting, dependency confusion and trojan functionality." more...

The rich philosophical tradition I fell in love with has been reduced to Fox News and voter suppression.
By David Brooks

I fell in love with conservatism in my 20s. As a politics and crime reporter in Chicago, I often found myself around public-housing projects like Cabrini-Green and the Robert Taylor Homes, which had been built with the best of intentions but had become nightmares. The urban planners who designed those projects thought they could improve lives by replacing ramshackle old neighborhoods with a series of neatly ordered high-rises. But, as the sociologist Richard Sennett, who lived in part of the Cabrini-Green complex as a child, noted, the planners never really consulted the residents themselves. They disrespected the residents by turning them into unseen, passive spectators of their own lives. By the time I encountered the projects they were national symbols of urban decay. more...

The context for the message is unclear, but it comes amid scrutiny of the Guard’s slow response to the Jan. 6 violence at the Capitol.
By KYLE CHENEY and NICHOLAS WU

Mark Meadows indicated in a Jan. 5 email that the National Guard was on standby to “protect pro Trump people,” according to documents obtained by the House committee investigating the Capitol riot, which the panel described in a public filing Sunday night. The context for the message is unclear, but it comes amid intense scrutiny of the Guard’s slow response to violence at the Capitol on Jan. 6 and conflicting timelines about their efforts from the Pentagon and National Guard leadership. more...

By Andrew Stanton

Critics slammed Kentucky Senator Rand Paul for requesting federal aid to help his state recover from devastating tornadoes after he previously voted against relief when other states were struck by natural disasters. Tornadoes swept across several midwestern and southern states Friday night and Saturday morning, leaving a trail of devastation in their paths. More than 70 people across Kentucky—one of the hardest hit states—were feared to be killed during the storm. Videos and photos of towns like Mayfield show the extent of the catastrophic damage. more...

The Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Saturday pledged to empower private citizens to enforce a ban on the manufacture and sale of assault weapons in the state, citing the same authority claimed by conservative lawmakers in Texas to outlaw most abortions once a heartbeat is detected. California has banned the manufacture and sale of many assault-style weapons for decades. A federal judge overturned that ban in June, ruling it was unconstitutional and drawing the ire of the state's Democratic leaders by comparing the popular AR-15 rifle to a Swiss Army knife as "good for both home and battle." California's ban remained in place while the state appealed. more...

Roberts joined the high court’s three liberal justices in discussing the constitutionality of the Texas abortion law.
By Rebecca Shabad

WASHINGTON — The chief justice of the United States, John Roberts, warned Friday that the Supreme Court risks losing its own authority if it allows states to circumvent the courts as Texas did with its near-total abortion ban. In a strongly worded opinion joined by the high court’s three liberal justices, Roberts wrote that the "clear purpose and actual effect" of the Texas law was "to nullify this Court’s rulings." That, he said, undermines the Constitution and the fundamental role of the Supreme Court and the court system as a whole. more...

By Jason Hanna, Elizabeth Joseph and Claudia Dominguez, CNN

(CNN) Storms unleashed devastating tornadoes late Friday and early Saturday across parts of the central and southern United States, including Kentucky, where the governor says the death toll may exceed 70 after "one of the toughest nights in Kentucky history." Among the most significant damage: Tornadoes or strong winds collapsed an occupied candle factory in Kentucky, an Amazon warehouse in western Illinois, and a nursing home in Arkansas, killing people in each community and leaving responders scrambling to rescue others. more...

By Jason Szep and Linda So

ATLANTA, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Weeks after the 2020 election, a Chicago publicist for hip-hop artist Kanye West traveled to the suburban home of Ruby Freeman, a frightened Georgia election worker who was facing death threats after being falsely accused by former President Donald Trump of manipulating votes. The publicist knocked on the door and offered to help.

The visitor, Trevian Kutti, gave her name but didn’t say she worked for West, a longtime billionaire friend of Trump. She said she was sent by a “high-profile individual,” whom she didn’t identify, to give Freeman an urgent message: confess to Trump’s voter-fraud allegations, or people would come to her home in 48 hours, and she’d go to jail. more...

D.C. Circuit ruling could open more draft documents to public disclosure
By MARISSA MARTINEZ and JOSH GERSTEIN

A federal appeals court has overturned a lower-court decision that allowed the Department of Justice to withhold emails related to former President Donald Trump’s 2017 travel ban that largely targeted Muslim-majority nations. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in the Freedom of Information Act case could open the door to disclosure of more drafts of federal government policies and edicts. Such drafts are often reflexively withheld by federal agencies, but the three-judge appeals court panel’s decision Friday said that agencies can’t withhold drafts solely because they’re drafts and that officials seeking to keep such records secret need to put forward an explanation of how disclosure would upset an agency’s internal deliberations. more...

Former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows handed over a trove of pre-Jan. 6 documentation. It’s damning stuff
By Ryan Bort

The House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the Capitol on Thursday released slides from a PowerPoint calling for former President Trump to declare a national security emergency in order to delay the certification of the results of the 2020 election. The presentation, headlined was referred to in an email provided to the committee by Mark Meadows, the former White House chief of staff who’s had a rough couple of weeks, to say the least. The revelation is the latest piece of evidence that Trump and his inner circle, including his allies in Congress, were very actively and very aggressively trying to overturn the results of the election, which Trump lost handily. The PowerPoint presentation, which spanned 38 pages and was titled “Election fraud, Foreign Interference & Options for 6 JAN,” was part of an email sent on Jan. 5, the day before the attack on the Capitol. more...

By Tim Reid

LOS ANGELES, Dec 9 (Reuters) - A judge in Texas ruled on Thursday that a law prohibiting abortions after about six weeks violated the state's constitution because it allows private citizens to sue abortion providers. more...

Is Tucker Carlson for or against America? Why does Tucker Carlson always side with Russia against America?
Peter Suciu

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) took to Twitter late Tuesday to joke that he was going to start a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to send Fox News Channel's Tucker Carlson to Russia. "Thinking about starting a @gofundme to send @TuckerCarlson to Russia. RT if we should send him," Rep. Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) tweeted. Swalwell was hardly the only person on social media to respond to Carlson's Tuesday night broadcast, in which the host suggested that Russia's build-up of forces on its border with Ukraine was a defensive move. Carlson said that Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin "just wants to keep his western borders secure." more...

‘At this point, Nato exists primarily to torment Vladimir Putin who, whatever his many faults, has no intention of invading Western Europe,’ claims Fox News host
Maroosha Muzaffar

Fox News host Tucker Carlson slammed president Joe Biden over his remarks about Russia’s troop build-up near its border with Ukraine, saying Vladimir Putin was just trying to “secure” his nation’s borders. Mr Biden warned Russia on Tuesday that the US was preparing “strong economic and other measures” over fears of invasion of Ukraine. more...

Jake Lahut and John Haltiwanger

Back in his bowtie days, the idea of young columnist and TV pundit Tucker Carlson arguing in favor of a Russian military invasion and against the position of the US and its NATO allies would have seemed far-fetched. Yet on Tuesday night, Carlson opened his primetime Fox News show with a segment depicting the US as "weak," siding instead with Russian President Vladimir Putin as the strong and rational actor in the debate over what President Joe Biden should do if Russia invades Ukraine. Carlson deployed one of his most common tactics, reframing the issue on his terms by starting out with an assumption. more...

By Tierney Sneed and Paul LeBlanc, CNN

(CNN) A federal appeals court Thursday ruled against former President Donald Trump in his effort to block his White House records from being released to the House select committee investigating January 6. However, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals paused its ruling for two weeks so that Trump could seek a Supreme Court intervention.

"The events of January 6th exposed the fragility of those democratic institutions and traditions that we had perhaps come to take for granted," said the DC Circuit opinion, which was written by Judge Patricia Millett, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama. "In response, the President of the United States and Congress have each made the judgment that access to this subset of presidential communication records is necessary to address a matter of great constitutional moment for the Republic. Former President Trump has given this court no legal reason to cast aside President Biden's assessment of the Executive Branch interests at stake, or to create a separation of powers conflict that the Political Branches have avoided." more...

Brad Reed

Actor Jussie Smollett has been found guilty on five of six counts of disorderly conduct related to a false police report her made about a bogus hate crime in which he claimed supporters of former President Donald Trump attacked him. more...

Once again Republicans showing they are against the America way of life.

By Jason Lemon

Former White House adviser Steve Bannon and GOP Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida want some "4,000 shock troops" to get ready to take control of the federal government if Donald Trump decides to run for president again and wins in 2024. Although Trump has not formally announced his intention to seek office, he has repeatedly hinted at the possibility. Several recent polls have suggested that Trump would be well positioned to defeat President Joe Biden, who has said he expects to run for reelection. more...

The acknowledgment comes amid his clash with the committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
By NICHOLAS WU, KYLE CHENEY and JOSH GERSTEIN

Mark Meadows and the National Archives are in talks over potential records he did “not properly” turn over from his personal phone and email account, the presidential record-keeping agency confirmed Thursday. “NARA is working with counsel to Mark Meadows to obtain any Presidential records that were not properly copied or forwarded into his official account,” a NARA spokesperson said in a statement to POLITICO. A source close to former President Donald Trump’s ex-chief of staff confirmed that Meadows is working with the National Archives to turn over any documents that he was supposed to provide upon the end of Trump's term. more...

Robert Snell, Hayley Harding | The Detroit News

Southfield — Survivors of the mass shooting at Oxford High School are filing two $100 million lawsuits against the school district and employees, lawyer Geoffrey Fieger said Thursday. The announcement comes more than one week after prosecutors say Ethan Crumbley, the 15-year-old alleged shooter, killed four students while wounding six other students and a teacher. more...

The agreement to raise the debt ceiling between the two Senate leaders might mark a high point for their relationship. Don't expect it to last.
By BURGESS EVERETT and MARIANNE LEVINE

After receiving a rare request from Mitch McConnell to discuss the debt limit in November, Chuck Schumer dialed Nancy Pelosi but received no answer. Given the urgency, he rushed to their joint press conference and waited for her to finish speaking. After she concluded, the two Democratic leaders walked to Schumer's car and he laid out a possible solution to a monthslong partisan standoff on the debt limit. McConnell wanted to give Democrats a quick vote to raise the debt ceiling on their own and finally take the debt limit imbroglio off the table, according to a person familiar with the discussions. more...

by: Gary Gilbert, Garrett Fergeson

Judge Timothy Brooks announced that sentencing will happen in about four months. Duggar was taken into custody after the verdict was announced. Defense Attorney Justin Gelfand said after the verdict that they plan to appeal. Closing arguments began the morning of December 8 and the verdict was reached on December 9 after just under seven hours of deliberation. The trial lasted six days and saw two witnesses called for the defense, while ten witnesses took the stand for the prosecution. more...

By James Oliphant and Nathan Layne

GRIFFIN, Georgia, Dec 9 (Reuters) - Protesters filled the meeting room of the Spalding County Board of Elections in October, upset that the board had disallowed early voting on Sundays for the Nov. 2 municipal election. A year ago, Sunday voting had been instrumental in boosting turnout of Black voters. But this was an entirely different five-member board than had overseen the last election. The Democratic majority of three Black women was gone. So was the Black elections supervisor. Now a faction of three white Republicans controlled the board – thanks to a bill passed by the Republican-led Georgia legislature earlier this year. The Spalding board’s new chairman has endorsed former president Donald Trump’s false stolen-election claims on social media. more...

By Veronica Stracqualursi and Ali Zaslav, CNN

(CNN) The Senate voted Wednesday night to overturn President Joe Biden's Covid-19 vaccine or testing mandate for private businesses with 100 or more employees. While it likely won't become law since its chances of getting a vote in the House are uncertain and Biden is certain to veto it, the effort demonstrates the bipartisan opposition in Congress to the federal government's vaccine mandate for large employers. The effort was led by Indiana Republican Sen. Mike Braun, and it needed just a simple majority of 51 votes to be approved by the chamber. The final vote was 52-48. Two Democrats, Sens. Jon Tester of Montana and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, joined their 50 GOP colleagues in voting to repeal the requirement. more...

Church’s get all the tax breaks now they want our tax dollars too! Taxpayers should not pay for private nor church schools. Republicans does not care that our founding father wanted separation of church and state.

Nina Totenberg

The U.S. Supreme Court's conservative supermajority seemed poised Wednesday to hand school choice advocates a major victory, and potentially a large expansion of state programs required to fund religious education. The handwriting on the wall came during a nearly two hour argument involving a challenge brought by two Maine families to the state's unusual way of providing public education.

Maine is a state so rural that a majority of its school districts do not have a high school. The way the state has dealt with that problem is to contract with existing high schools to accept students from from districts with no high school, and in addition, to pay the same amount to non-sectarian private schools to pick up the slack. What the state will not do is pay the same tuition for students attending religious schools. more...

James Queally

The caption read "hanging with the homies." The picture above it showed several Black men who had been lynched. Another photo asked what someone should do if their girlfriend was having an affair with a Black man. The answer, according to the caption, was to break "a tail light on his car so the police will stop him and shoot him.” Someone else sent a picture of a candy cane, a Christmas tree ornament, a star for the top of the tree and an "enslaved person." "Which one doesn't belong?" the caption asked. "You don't hang the star," someone wrote back. The comments represent a sliver of a trove of racist text messages exchanged by more than a dozen current and former Torrance police officers and recruits. more...

Church’s get all the tax breaks now they want our tax dollars too! Taxpayers should not pay for private nor church schools. Republicans does not care that our founding father wanted separation of church and state.

An emboldened religious right wants the public to pay for its schools.
By Ian Millhiser

The plaintiffs in Carson v. Makin, a case being heard next Wednesday, December 8, begin their brief to the Supreme Court with an absolutely ridiculous historical comparison. “In the 19th century, Maine’s public schools expelled students for adhering to their faith,” they claim, citing one example of a Catholic student expelled for not completing lessons off a Protestant bible. Now, according to the brief, Maine is committing a similarly repugnant sin against religious people by refusing to pay state residents’ tuition at private religious schools. Under this reasoning, there is no relevant difference between denying a public education to a Catholic student and refusing to pay for private religious education. “The times are different,” the plaintiffs’ brief claims, “but the result is the same: denial of educational opportunity through religious discrimination.” more...

Savannah Behrmann | USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – The House voted overwhelmingly along party lines Tuesday evening on a bipartisan agreement that allows Congress to move closer to raising the nation's debt ceiling. The vote came after leadership in the Senate, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced an agreement Tuesday that would create a one-time process to allow Senate Democrats to raise the debt ceiling on their own without fear of a Republican filibuster or other procedural hurdles. more...

Jerod Macdonald-Evoy, Arizona Mirror

Republican Congressman Paul Gosar tweeted out a video meme last week, which he later deleted, that has roots in neo-Nazi and white nationalist culture. The since-deleted tweet, which was saved by the internet archive, begins with a cartoon image of a man looking dismayed as a number of headlines are displayed while the song “Little Dark Age" by MGMT plays. Before the song crescendos, a buff cartoon with Gosar's head superimposed on it appears in a doorway before the cartoon character, and a montage of Gosar is played before another photoshopped image of the congressman's head on a muscular man is shown while a spinning “America First" logo is shown around his head. more...

Tom Boggioni

In video posted to Twitter by user @Alexcentral77, members of the white nationalist hate group Patriot Front who marched through Washington on Saturday are seen backing up and then running as they are being filmed loading into vans to leave the area. On Saturday, videos posted online showed members of the group marching on the National Mall, wearing masks and carrying shields and American flags hung upside down. Later they were seen loading into Penske cargo trucks to depart. According to a report from the Daily Beast, the departure did not go smoothly as there was not enough vans to bear them away. more...

Tom Boggioni

According to a report from the Daily Beast's Noah Kirsch, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts (R) is trying to turn himself into a national player in the Republican Party by ramping up the "nuttiness quotient" and embracing far-right conspiracies. As Kirsch notes, Ricketts previously kept his distance from former president Donald Trump but is now "embracing" the way the former president gained a mass audience while using the president's extremist playbook. more...

Sarah Toce

Donald Trump's former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows "has a history of lying about my reporting before he confirms it," New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman shared on CNN Thursday. "I can't describe which one is worse...it’s bad that they are on the one hand acknowledging they were imperiling all of these people [with the positive COVID-19 test]. Not actually acknowledging." Donald Trump's former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows "has a history of lying about my reporting before he confirms it," New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman shared on CNN Thursday. "I can't describe which one is worse...it’s bad that they are on the one hand acknowledging they were imperiling all of these people [with the positive COVID-19 test]. Not actually acknowledging." more...

By Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

(CNN) Bob Dole, a Republican Party stalwart and presidential hopeful who espoused a brand of plain-spoken conservativism as one of Washington's most recognizable political figures throughout the latter half of the 20th century, died Sunday. "Senator Robert Joseph Dole died early this morning in his sleep. At his death, at age 98, he had served the United States of America faithfully for 79 years," according to a statement from his family.
He had announced in February that he was being treated for advanced lung cancer. President Joe Biden visited Dole shortly after learning of the diagnosis. more...

Daniel Wood, Geoff Brumfiel

Since May 2021, people living in counties that voted heavily for Donald Trump during the last presidential election have been nearly three times as likely to die from COVID-19 as those who live in areas that went for now-President Biden. That's according to a new analysis by NPR that examines how political polarization and misinformation are driving a significant share of the deaths in the pandemic. NPR looked at deaths per 100,000 people in roughly 3,000 counties across the U.S. from May 2021, the point at which vaccinations widely became available. People living in counties that went 60% or higher for Trump in November 2020 had 2.7 times the death rates of those that went for Biden. Counties with an even higher share of the vote for Trump saw higher COVID-19 mortality rates. more...

Here are some excerpts of the nine sitting justices from their Senate confirmation hearings and Wednesday’s oral arguments.
By NICK NIEDZWIADEK and MICHAEL CADENHEAD

As nominees, prospective jurists are typically circumspect about their leanings on an array of topics, perhaps none more so than abortion. Oftentimes they demur on questions raised by senators during the multi-day confirmation hearings by stating the need to not prejudge issues that may come before the court while vowing to keep an open mind. Members of both political parties grumble about this practice, as it allows nominees to avoid giving revealing answers to sensitive questions — even when their prior writings and public statements point to strongly held beliefs in certain areas of the law. more...

Martin Pengelly

CNN has fired the primetime anchor Chris Cuomo for trying to help his brother, the former New York governor Andrew Cuomo, fight accusations of sexual misconduct which resulted in his resignation. Announcing the firing on Saturday, CNN said “additional information” had come to light. “Chris Cuomo was suspended earlier this week,” a statement said, “pending further evaluation of new information that came to light about his involvement with his brother’s defense. “We retained a respected law firm to conduct the review and have terminated him effective immediately. While in the process of that review additional information has come to light. Despite the termination, we will investigate as appropriate.” more...

“By portraying him as charismatic, well-connected, almost larger than life, her team may well be hoping to make Maxwell disappear into the background," one legal expert said.
By Tom Winter and Corky Siemaszko

The British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell is the one accused of sex trafficking, but during the first five days of testimony in a New York City courtroom her lawyers have put her deceased boss, Jeffrey Epstein, and his famous friends on trial, legal experts say. That strategy quickly became evident on the first day of the long-awaited trial when attorney Bobbi Sternheim, in her opening statement, dipped into the book of Genesis to defend Maxwell. “Ever since Eve was tempting Adam with the apple, women have been blamed for the bad behavior of men,” Sternheim said. “She is not Jeffrey Epstein, she is not like Jeffrey Epstein.” more...

By Carolyn Sung, Shimon Prokupecz, Aya Elamroussi , CNN

James and Jennifer Crumbley entered not guilty pleas to all charges against them during their arraignment Saturday morning. The couple "fully intended" to turn themselves in "first thing this morning for arraignment," attorneys representing them said in a statement Saturday morning ahead of their arraignment. The parents of the teen accused in this week's deadly Michigan high school shooting were arrested early Saturday in Detroit, authorities said, ending an hourslong search for them after they failed to appear in court on involuntary manslaughter charges in the killings.

James and Jennifer Crumbley, the parents of Oxford High School shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley, were found on the first floor of an industrial or commercial building after someone tipped police Friday night that their vehicle was nearby, police officials said. "They appeared to be hiding in the building," some 40 miles south of the Oxford area where they live, Detroit Police Chief James White said during a news conference early Saturday. They were "very distressed" after they were detained, the chief said. more...

The idea that anti-racist is a code word for “anti-white” is the claim of avowed extremists.
By Ibram X. Kendi

Below a Democratic donkey, the Fox News graphic read ANTI-WHITE MANIA. It flanked Tucker Carlson’s face and overtook it in size. It was unmistakable. Which was the point. The segment aired on June 25—the height of the manic attack on, and redefinition of, critical race theory, which Carlson has repeatedly cast as “anti-white.” It was one of his most incendiary segments of the year. “The question is, and this is the question we should be meditating on, day in and day out, is how do we get out of this vortex, the cycle, before it’s too late?” Carlson asked. “How do we save this country before we become Rwanda?” Some white Americans have been led to fear that they could be massacred like the Tutsis of Rwanda. CRT=Marxism, Marxism→Genocide Every time, read a sign at a June 23 Proud Boys demonstration in Miami. Other white Americans have been led to fear America’s teachers—79 percent of whom are white—instructing “kids to identify in racial terms,” as Blake Masters, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Arizona, said in May. more...

Lawyers who argued for LGBTQ rights in those landmark cases — Obergefell v. Hodges and Lawrence v. Texas — were conflicted on the validity of Justice Kavanaugh’s argument.
By Matt Lavietes

Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh seemed to suggest earlier this week that landmark LGBTQ cases could support overturning federal abortion rights. The Supreme Court heard 90 minutes of oral arguments Wednesday concerning a Mississippi law that would ban almost all abortions in the state after 15 weeks of pregnancy. A majority of the court’s conservative justices appeared prepared to uphold the law and possibly overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision holding that women have a constitutional right to have an abortion before fetal viability, usually around 24 weeks. more...

By Steve Contorno, CNN

St, Petersburg, Florida (CNN) Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to reestablish a World War II-era civilian military force that he, not the Pentagon, would control. DeSantis pitched the idea Thursday as a way to further support the Florida National Guard during emergencies, like hurricanes. The Florida National Guard has also played a vital role during the pandemic in administering Covid-19 tests and distributing vaccines. But in a nod to the growing tension between Republican states and the Biden administration over the National Guard, DeSantis also said this unit, called the Florida State Guard, would be "not encumbered by the federal government." He said this force would give him "the flexibility and the ability needed to respond to events in our state in the most effective way possible." DeSantis is proposing bringing it back with a volunteer force of 200 civilians, and he is seeking $3.5 million from the state legislature in startup costs to train and equip them. more...

By Tierney Sneed

(CNN) When Justice Brett Kavanaugh was facing tough questions during his 2018 confirmation battle about his views on the Supreme Court's abortion rulings. he returned time and time again to the importance of precedent and their "precedent on precedent." Speaking more broadly, Kavanaugh at the time described the circumstances that the justices overturn precedent as "rare" and said that a court majority's disagreement with a prior ruling was, by itself, not enough to overturn it. But Kavanaugh's tone on when the court departs from "stare decisis," the concept of standing by its previous decisions, was a bit different on Wednesday when the court debated the future of abortion rights and its previous rulings. more...

By Jason Hanna, Aya Elamroussi and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN

Oxford, Michigan (CNN)Two teachers separately reported concerning behavior from sophomore Ethan Crumbley starting the day before the deadly Michigan high school shooting he's accused of -- prompting two meetings with him, including one with his parents just hours before the killings, a sheriff said Thursday. Crumbley, 15, was charged as an adult Wednesday with terrorism, murder and other counts in connection with Tuesday's shooting that killed four students and injured seven other people at Oxford High School north of Detroit. The first behavioral report came Monday, when "a teacher in the classroom where he was a student saw and heard something that she felt was disturbing," Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard told Brianna Keilar on CNN's "New Day." more...

By Alexander Bolton

Senate Republicans on Wednesday battled over a proposal floated by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Sen. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) to block a short-term government funding deal unless they get a vote on an amendment to stop the Biden administration from implementing its vaccine mandate for large employers. Republican lawmakers described the meeting as contentious as Lee and Marshall refused to back down from their threat to drag out consideration of the government funding bill to use as leverage to get Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) to agree to a vote on their amendment. “There was a robust discussion,” said Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.) after the weekly GOP Steering Committee lunch, noting that Lee didn’t back down despite pushback from the GOP conference. “It was a lively discussion.” more...

The Mississippi law bans most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, allowing them only in medical emergencies or cases of severe fetal abnormality.
By Pete Williams and Teaganne Finn

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court appeared prepared Wednesday to uphold a Mississippi law that would ban almost all abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, which would represent a dramatic break from 50 years of rulings. The justices heard 90 minutes of oral arguments in the most direct challenge to Roe v. Wade in nearly three decades over a Mississippi abortion law. A majority of the court's conservative justices suggested they were prepared to discard the court's previous standard that prevented states from banning abortion before a fetus becomes viable, which is generally considered to be at about 24 weeks into a pregnancy. more...

David Edwards

Former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman, who is leading a partisan investigation into the 2020 election, clashed with state Rep. Mark Spreitzer (D) on Wednesday. At a hearing before the Wisconsin Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections, Spreitzer challenged Gableman for hiring investigators with a history of working to overturn the 2020 election. Gableman has been previously criticized over the "shamefully biased" investigation. "It seems that you are firmly in the lane of suggesting that the outcome of the election should have been overturned," Spreitzer pointed out. more...

Bob Brigham

Christian nationalism is a threat to democracy, according to a German expert on fascism. Andrew Seidel of Religion Dispatches interviewed Annika Brockschmidt, the author of the new book, "Amerikas Gotteskrieger: Wie die Religiöse Rechte die Demokratie gefährdet" (roughly translated as “America’s Godly Warriors: How Religious Right Endangers Democracy.") "January 6 helped argue the case for fascist tendencies in Christian Nationalism," Brockschmidt said. more...

Mark Meadows makes stunning admission in new memoir obtained by Guardian, saying a second test returned negative
Martin Pengelly

Donald Trump tested positive for Covid-19 three days before his first debate against Joe Biden, the former president’s fourth and last chief of staff has revealed in a new book. Mark Meadows also writes that though he knew each candidate was required “to test negative for the virus within seventy two hours of the start time … Nothing was going to stop [Trump] from going out there.” Trump, Meadows says in the book, returned a negative result from a different test shortly after the positive. Nonetheless, the stunning revelation of an unreported positive test follows a year of speculation about whether Trump, then 74 years old, had the potentially deadly virus when he faced Biden, 77, in Cleveland on 29 September – and what danger that might have presented. more...

By Oliver Darcy and Brian Stelter, CNN Business

New York (CNN Business) CNN has suspended prime time anchor Chris Cuomo "indefinitely, pending further evaluation," after new documents revealed the cozy and improper nature of his relationship with aides to his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The benched anchorman declined to comment on Tuesday night. A second hour of "Anderson Cooper 360" aired in Cuomo's place on Tuesday night. A town hall about Covid-19 will air Wednesday night. Tuesday's announcement about the suspension was the equivalent of a cable news shockwave. Cuomo's 9 p.m. program is frequently CNN's most-watched hour of the day. He is a larger-than-life presence at the network. And he was determined to stay on TV this year despite a flurry of sexual misconduct allegations against his brother, which culminated in the governor's resignation three months ago. more...

By Ariane de Vogue, CNN Supreme Court Reporter

(CNN) The conservative-leaning Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments in the most important abortion case in 30 years Wednesday as the justices consider Mississippi's request to overturn Roe v. Wade and uphold a state law that bars the procedure 15 weeks after conception. The dispute represents the culmination of a decades-long effort on the part of critics of the landmark opinion that legalized abortion nationwide to return the issue to the states, a move that would almost immediately eviscerate abortion rights in large swaths of the South and the Midwest. The very fact that the current court, with its solid six-member conservative majority, agreed to even consider a state law that bars abortion long before viability suggests that the court -- bolstered by three of former President Donald Trump's appointees -- is poised to scale back court precedent if not reverse it outright. more...

Nathan Place New York, Shweta Sharma, Thomas Kingsley, Gino Spocchia, Megan Sheets

At least three students are dead and eight others are injured after a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at his Michigan high school on Tuesday. The suspected shooter at Oxford High School, who is now in police custody, is believed to have used a semi-automatic handgun his father purchased on Black Friday. more...

Oliver O’Connell, Alisha Rahaman Sarkar, Gino Spocchia, Stuti Mishra, Eleanor Sly

Day three of the trial of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell has begun in New York City, as the 59-year-old faces charges related to her alleged involvement in financier Jeffrey Epstein’s sex crimes. On the second day, her first accuser who identified only as “Jane”, took the stand and testified that Ms Maxwell was in the room when Epstein sexually assaulted her at the age of 14. In at times graphic testimony, she described how she met the couple and was invited into their world, only to be subjected to sexual abuse over a period of years, ruining her self-worth. Cross-examination of “Jane” now continues. more...


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