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US Monthly Headline News May 2021 Page 1

By Eric Bradner and Dianne Gallagher, CNN

Austin, Texas (CNN) Texas Republicans' push to enact a slew of new voting restrictions was stymied -- at least for now -- by Democrats who walked off the state House floor late Sunday night, leaving majority Republicans without the quorum they needed to approve the bill in the final hours before a midnight deadline. Their move effectively killed Senate Bill 7 for this year's legislative session. But it could soon be revived: Republican Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted Sunday night that he is adding "election integrity" to a list of topics lawmakers will address in a special session he plans to call. "Legislators will be expected to have worked out the details when they arrive at the Capitol for the special session," Abbott said. Democrats left the chamber at about 10:45 p.m., CT, leaving Republican Speaker Dade Phelan to concede that the House did not have the 100 members necessary for a quorum and to adjourn the House for the night. more...

CBS News

Kerrville, Texas — Authorities in Texas arrested a man accused of plotting to carry out a mass shooting at a Walmart, and a search of the suspect's home turned up firearms, ammunition and materials officials described as "radical ideology paraphernalia." Coleman Thomas Blevins, 28, was arrested Friday in Kerrville and has been charged with making a "terroristic threat to create public fear of serious bodily injury," the Kerr County Sheriff's Office said in a news release Sunday. Investigators said they intercepted a message from Blevins on Thursday indicating he was "preparing to proceed with a mass shooting," and that the threat included Walmart. Blevins was taken into custody the next day. more...

By Daniella Diaz and Kristin Wilson, CNN

(CNN) The House on Friday overwhelmingly supported a measure condemning the military coup in Myanmar that ousted the country's civilian leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. But some conservative Republicans didn't support the measure, and it's unclear why. Every House Democrat backed it, while 14 Republicans voted against it and GOP Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona voted present. The measure was a suspension bill, which are typically passed via voice vote, but earlier in the week Republicans forced recorded votes on five bipartisan pieces of legislation. more...

Viola Fletcher was 7 years old when white armed mobs descended on Tulsa, Oklahoma, killing Black people and destroying an economic mecca.
By Deon J. Hampton

Seven-year-old Viola Fletcher was awakened by her parents 100 years ago today and told they had to leave home. Angry, gun-toting white mobs had set out under the cover of nightfall in her hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma, to kill Black people and destroy Black America’s economic mecca. Now 107, Fletcher recalls the night that forever changed Tulsa. “People running and screaming. And noise from the air like an airplane. And — just so many things was disturbing, you know. And fires burning, and smelling smoke,” Fletcher told NBC News. “And then we could hear someone going through the neighborhood ... that everybody should leave town, that they were killing all the Black people. So, you know, that was frightening.” more...

By Channon Hodge, Breeanna Hare, Tami Luhby, Elias Goodstein, Priya Krishnakumar, Nadia Lancy, Toby Lyles, Amy Roberts and Clint Alwahab, CNN

As the Civil War neared its end, Union General William Sherman had been convinced that newly emancipated slaves needed their own land to secure their freedom. He issued Special Field Order No. 15, setting aside 400,000 coastal acres of land for Black families and stating that, “…no white person whatever, unless military officers and soldiers detailed for duty, will be permitted to reside.” A provision was added later for mules. In three months, the potential of Sherman’s order vanished with a single shot. That April, President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, and in the fall President Andrew Johnson reversed Sherman’s order, allowing Confederate planters to regain the land. It demonstrated a ruthless appropriation that would be repeated for decades to come. Still, Black Americans created pockets of wealth during the Reconstruction years and into the early 20th century. Yet where Black Americans created a refuge, White Americans pushed back through political maneuvering and violence. This year marks the centennial of one such event: the heinous attack on the Black enclave of Greenwood in Tulsa, Oklahoma. more...

“It should happen,” Flynn declared of the violent, deadly military coup at a wild QAnon conference in Dallas for “patriots.”
headshot
By Mary Papenfuss

Avowed QAnon disciple and confessed felon retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn has called for a Myanmar-like military coup in America. “It should happen,” Donald Trump’s former national security adviser said in an astonishing declaration at a QAnon conference Sunday. Myanmar’s military violently seized control of the country from its civilian government in late January, detained democratically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi and top party members, and killed more than 700 protesters as of early this month. The military justified its action by claiming unproven “election fraud.” Flynn presented his dark vision of a military coup and dictatorship in the U.S. in response to a question from the audience at the conference. more...

The video circulating on Twitter shows the crowd cheering the suggestion of a coup in the US
Stuti Mishra

Michael Flynn, a former national security adviser under the Donald Trump administration, has said that a Myanmar-like coup — in which the military overthrew a democratically elected government — “should happen” in the US. Appearing in Dallas, Texas, at a QAnon conference, Mr Flynn was asked during a Q&A session by a member of the audience: “I want to know why what happened in Myanmar can’t happen here?” The video circulating on Twitter shows the question receiving cheering from the crowd. In response, Mr Flynn said: “No reason. I mean, it should happen here.” more...

By Megan Cerullo

Employers are allowed to require the COVID-19 vaccine, and can also legally provide incentives, including cash, to workers who get jabbed, according to updated guidance from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Companies must still provide reasonable accommodation for employees who are exempt from mandatory immunization under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The commission also stated that employer incentives must not be "coercive," but stopped short of providing examples of illegal offers. more...

Bill rushed to floor of state senate in middle of the night. Leading US House Democrat calls new law ‘shameful’.  ‘Un-American and wrong’: Biden blasts Texas voting bill
Martin Pengelly

Republicans in the Texas Senate muscled one of the most restrictive voting measures in the US to the cusp of law on Sunday, after rushing the legislation to the floor in the middle of the night. The sweeping measure, Senate Bill 7 or SB7, passed on party lines around 6am, after eight hours of questioning by Democrats who have virtually no path to stop it. The bill must still clear a final vote in the Texas House later on Sunday in order to reach Governor Greg Abbott, who is expected to sign it. “I have grave concerns about a bill that was crafted in the shadows and passed late at night,” said one Democratic state senator, Beverly Powell. In closed-door negotiations, Republicans added language that could make it easier for a judge to overturn an election and pushed back the start of Sunday voting, when many Black churchgoers go to the polls. The 67-page measure would also eliminate drive-thru voting and 24-hour polling centers, both of which Harris county, a Democratic stronghold, introduced last year. more...

By JONATHAN LANDRUM Jr.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Several documentary filmmakers — some backed by NBA superstars — are shedding light on the historically ignored Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921, one of the most horrific tragedies in American history. LeBron James and Russell Westbrook are among those releasing documentaries based on the racially motivated massacre. The projects come during the 100th anniversary of the massacre in Greenwood, a Black-owned business district and residential neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Each documentary uniquely takes a deep dive into how the thriving Greenwood community — dubbed Black Wall Street because of the number of Black-owned businesses — was decimated in a two-day attack by a white mob. In the aftermath, at least 300 Black people were killed. More than a thousand homes were burned and others looted, leaving roughly 10,000 residents displaced and homeless and the Black business district destroyed. more...

By Alta Spells, Laura James and Holly Yan, CNN

(CNN) Police are looking for the assailants who opened fire at a Florida club, killing at least two people and wounding at least 20 more, Miami-Dade police director Alfredo Ramirez III said. A white Nissan Pathfinder pulled up to a billiards club in Hialeah between 12 a.m. and 1 a.m. Sunday, Ramirez said. Three people "stepped out of the vehicle with assault rifles and handguns and started firing indiscriminately into the crowd," the police director said. more...

Republicans are trying to rig (steal) future elections.

Countrywide campaigns for secretaries of state underscore new Republican focus to take control of election administration
Sam Levine

Republicans who have embraced baseless claims about the 2020 election being stolen are now running to serve as the chief elections officials in several states, a move that could give them significant power over election processes. The campaigns, first detailed by Politico last week, underscore a new focus to take control of election administration. Secretaries of state, who are elected to office in partisan contests that have long been overlooked, wield enormous power over election rules in their state, are responsible for overseeing election equipment, and are a key player in certifying – making official – election results. Winning secretary of state offices across the country would give conspiracy theorists enormous power to wreak havoc in the 2024 presidential election, including potentially blocking candidates who win the most votes from taking office. more...

Joshua Zitser

Monday will mark 100 years since the Tulsa race massacre destroyed "Black Wall Street," and the US Department of Homeland Security has warned that white supremacist groups might target events commemorating it. "We assess those upcoming commemoration events associated with the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa race massacre in Oklahoma probably are attractive targets for some racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist-white supremacists to commit violence," the department said, according to a memo obtained by NBC News. The memo did not mention any specific events, but Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said that his forces have plans in place to ensure a Tuesday visit by President Joe Biden goes smoothly. more...

By Daniel Politi

Lawmakers in Texas have finalized writing a bill that would impose some of the most restrictive voting measures in the United States. The bill seems all but certain to pass the state’s House and Senate before Gov. Greg Abbott, a staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump, signs it into law. President Joe Biden harshly criticized the bill Saturday, characterizing it as “part of an assault on democracy” that has become evident in several states since the 2020 elections. “It’s wrong and un-American. In the 21st century, we should be making it easier, not harder, for every eligible voter to vote,” Biden said in a statement. more...

The incident was "another targeted and cowardly act of gun violence," Miami Dade Police Director Alfredo "Freddy" Ramirez III tweeted.
By Yuliya Talmazan and Austin Mullen

Two people were killed and over 20 injured in a mass shooting in Miami early Sunday, the Miami-Dade Police Department said in a statement. Three people got out of an SUV and “began shooting indiscriminately into the crowd,” that were standing outside a "scheduled event" at an establishment on 186th Street, to the west of Miami Gardens, the statement said. Investigators were hunting for the suspects who returned to their vehicle and fled the scene after the incident, the statement added. more...

Taylor Ardrey

Black gun owners plan to march in Oklahoma Saturday to advocate for gun ownership and in honor of the Tulsa Race Massacre. As VICE News reported, hundreds of members from Huey P. Newton Gun Club, Anubis Arms Gun Club, and the Panther Special Operations Command as well other organizations from across the country are expected to participate in the protest. "Our hope is to try to galvanize a community, educate around the position of Second Amendment rights, and hopefully be a vehicle to more or less unify the African American community," co-founder of the Newton Gun Club in Dallas, Texas, Yafeuh Balogun, said to VICE News. Balogun told VICE News that the protest in Oklahoma will be one the biggest events of Black pro-gun rights advocates in years. more...

Michael McGough

When it comes to the big lie that propelled the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol by Donald Trump's supporters, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) had positioned himself in the past as somewhat more reasonable than his counterpart in the House, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield). But in joining McCarthy in opposing an independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection, McConnell has shown that, as the late George Wallace once said about the two major parties, there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between the Republican leaders. After suggesting that he might be open to arguments in favor of a commission, McConnell last week came out against the idea, calling the House proposal for an independent panel “slanted and unbalanced.” more...

Tim O'Donnell

Former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean (R), the former chair of the 9/11 Commission, weighed in on Republican senators' decision to block the creation of a similar exploration of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. "It saddens me because there was no real, public reason for turning it down," he told The Guardian. "I guess some people were scared of what they'd find out. That's not a good reason for turning it down." Kean and his vice chair, former Rep. Lee Hamilton (D-Fla.) aren't viewing the news in a vacuum, however. Hamilton told USA Today that any investigation can get off-track, but "if you follow the arguments of the opponents, we would never investigate anything," while Kean added that "if we can't do it for this one, can we do it for [the handling COVID-19 pandemic]? That's very sad." In short, he told PBS NewsHour, Congress is setting the precedent that it is "incapable of telling the American people the truth about something very important that happened." Read more at The Guardian, USA Today, and PBS NewsHour. more...

By Natalie Colarossi

A growing number of Democrats are calling for President Joe Biden to form a commission to investigate the attack at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, after Republican lawmakers blocked a bill that would have allowed Congress to do so. On Friday, 35 GOP Senators blocked a bill that was passed in the Democratic-led House that sought to form a bipartisan commission to investigate the events of Capitol riot. The House-approved bill was modeled after a 9/11 style commission, and sought to establish a 10-person committee, evenly split between Democrats and Republicans, tasked with investigating the facts and circumstances of the assault. Five people died as a result of the Capitol riot, when a mob of pro–Donald Trump supporters sought to disrupt the congressional certification of Joe Biden's electoral victory. more...

By Manu Raju, Chief Congressional Correspondent

(CNN) House Democrats are actively considering mounting a probe of their own into the January 6 US Capitol attack, signaling they don't plan to let the issue go away in the aftermath of Senate Republicans derailing the creation of an outside commission to probe the deadly insurrection. Speaker Nancy Pelosi has made clear repeatedly that moving to create a select committee has always remained a fallback option -- something that would require the support of a majority of the Democratic-led House to create. And a number of Democrats said on Friday that they believe Pelosi will indeed create the new committee -- and that the caucus would strongly support such an effort. "That's her next move," one senior House Democrat said Friday. more...

By Travis Caldwell, Eric Levenson and Josh Campbell, CNN

(CNN) The gunman who authorities say killed nine coworkers in San Jose, California, had a hatred for his workplace that he expressed in notes discovered when he was searched almost five years ago, a Department of Homeland Security official told CNN on Thursday. Samuel James Cassidy was taken into secondary inspection after returning from a trip to the Philippines on August 8, 2016, and US Customs and Border Protection officers searched his belongings, the official said. In addition to a black memo book filled with notes about hatred towards the Valley Transportation Authority, officers also found books about terrorism and fear and manifestos, the official said. more...

By Steve Forrest, CNN

(CNN) Bill Cosby has been denied parole by the Pennsylvania Parole Board, which cited a number of reasons for its decision, according to a letter from the board obtained by CNN. Cosby, 83, is currently serving a 3-to-10-year sentence at a prison outside Philadelphia for drugging and sexually assaulting a former Temple University employee at his home in 2004. The letter, which indicated the board's decision was rendered on May 11, said Cosby must "participate in and complete additional institutional programs." The board cited Cosby's "failure to develop a parole release plan" and a "negative recommendation by the Department of Corrections" as factors that contributed to the decision. more...

Microsoft said that Nobelium, a Russian-based hacking group, launched the phishing campaign by gaining access to a marketing account of USAID.
By Phil Helsel and Ezra Kaplan

The Russian-based group behind the SolarWinds hack has launched a new campaign that appears to target government agencies, think tanks and non-governmental organizations, Microsoft said Thursday. Nobelium launched the current attacks after getting access to an email marketing service used by the United States Agency for International Development, or USAID, according to Microsoft. "These attacks appear to be a continuation of multiple efforts by Nobelium to target government agencies involved in foreign policy as part of intelligence gathering efforts," Tom Burt, Microsoft vice president of customer security and trust, wrote in a blog post. The campaign, which Microsoft called an active incident, targeted 3,000 email accounts across 150 organizations, mostly in the United States, Burt said. But the targets are in at least 24 countries. At least a quarter of the targeted organizations are said to be involved in things like international development and human rights work. more...

Sam Shead

The Russian hackers thought to be behind the catastrophic SolarWinds attack last year have launched another major cyberattack, Microsoft warned three weeks before President Joe Biden is to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Microsoft said in a blog post Thursday that the hacking group, known as Nobelium, had targeted over 150 organizations worldwide in the last week, including government agencies, think tanks, consultants and nongovernmental organizations. They sent phishing emails — spoof messages designed to trick people into handing over sensitive information or downloading harmful software — to more than 3,000 email accounts, the tech giant said. more...

The 37-year-old activist said her resignation has been in the works for more than a year and has nothing to do with the personal attacks she has faced from far-right groups or any dissension within the movement.
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

A co-founder of Black Lives Matter announced Thursday that she is stepping down as executive director of the movement’s foundation following what she has called a smear campaign from a far-right group and recent criticism from other Black organizers. Patrisse Cullors, who has been at the helm of the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation for nearly six years, said she is leaving to focus on other projects, including the upcoming release of her second book and a multi-year TV development deal with Warner Bros. Her last day with the foundation is Friday. more...

Is an adversary using a microwave or radio wave weapon to attack the brains of U.S. diplomats, spies and military personnel?
Nomaan Merchant, Robert Burns and Eric Tucker

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is facing new pressure to resolve a mystery that has vexed its predecessors: Is an adversary using a microwave or radio wave weapon to attack the brains of U.S. diplomats, spies and military personnel? The number of reported cases of possible attack is sharply growing and lawmakers from both parties, as well as those believed to be affected, are demanding answers. But scientists and government officials aren’t yet certain about who might have been behind any attacks, if the symptoms could have been caused inadvertently by surveillance equipment — or if the incidents were actually attacks. more...

The president flew to Cleveland to try to sell his $4 trillion in new spending plans to the country.
By ANITA KUMAR

CLEVELAND — President Joe Biden continues to negotiate with Republicans on his big-ticket spending plans. But on Thursday, when he left Washington, he mocked them for voting against the coronavirus recovery package and then turning around and promoting the bill. “If you’re going to try to take credit for what you’ve done, don’t get in the way of what we still need to do,” he said during a visit to Northeast Ohio, holding up a list for 13 Republicans. “Not a single one of them voted for the rescue plan. I’m not going to embarrass anyone, but I have here a list of how back in their districts they’re bragging.” more...

President Joe Biden discussed the GOP lawmakers who voted against the American Rescue Plan, but are touting it in their districts while he spoke about the economy in Cleveland. video...

“We’ve got to get to the bottom of this shit,” the normally amiable Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) said. “Jesus."
By BURGESS EVERETT and NICHOLAS WU

Senate Republicans are ready to filibuster a proposed independent commission to investigate the Capitol riot, as GOP opposition swelled in the final days before the vote expected later Thursday. Several undecided Republicans came down against advancing the commission ahead of the vote, despite efforts by Sen. Susan Collins of Maine to broker a compromise. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has taken an increasingly hard public and private line against establishing the new panel to probe the Jan. 6 Capitol attack by pro-Trump insurrectionists, dubbing the commission idea “extraneous” on Thursday. Senate Minority Whip John Thune of South Dakota said in an interview that his party is not willing to provide the 10 votes needed to start debate on the bill: “At the moment, no.” more...

By Katelyn Polantz, CNN

(CNN) A federal judge on Wednesday wrote that Donald Trump's "Big Lie" that the 2020 election was stolen from him could still inspire some of the former President's supporters to take up arms, as they did in January during the deadly US Capitol insurrection. The judge's blunt assessment of the current, charged political climate came in a legal decision about a defendant who was drawn to Washington, DC, in January. And it adds to a growing chorus of warnings from the officials most closely weighing the aftermath of the Capitol riot about what the threat level still might be. "The steady drumbeat that inspired defendant to take up arms has not faded away; six months later, the canard that the election was stolen is being repeated daily on major news outlets and from the corridors of power in state and federal government, not to mention in the near-daily fulminations of the former President," Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the DC District Court wrote in an opinion to keep defendant Cleveland Meredith Jr. in jail because he could endanger the public if released. more...

By Daniella Diaz, CNN

Washington (CNN) Former House Speaker Paul Ryan is set to criticize former President Donald Trump and his hold on the Republican Party during a speech Thursday night, according to excerpts obtained by CNN. Ryan, a critic of the former President in the past, is expected to say at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, that Republicans must move away from the "populist appeal of one personality" because "then we're not going anywhere." "Once again, we conservatives find ourselves at a crossroads. And here's one reality we have to face: If the conservative cause depends on the populist appeal of one personality, or on second-rate imitations, then we're not going anywhere. Voters looking for Republican leaders want to see independence and mettle," Ryan is expected to say. more...

By Zamira Rahim, CNN

(CNN) John Davis, one of the true singers behind notorious R&B act Milli Vanilli, has died of coronavirus aged 66, according to his family. Davis' daughter, Jasmin Davis, confirmed the performer's death to CNN Thursday. She revealed the news initially in a post shared on his Facebook page this week. "Unfortunately my dad passed away this evening through the coronavirus," she wrote on Monday. "He made a lot of people happy with his laughter and smile, his happy spirit, love and especially through his music. He gave so much to the world! Please give him the last round of applause." Milli Vanilli was a German-French act fronted by Rob Pilatus and Fab Morvan, which fell apart after it emerged that the men had not sung on their records. more...

In 2011, Chinese spies stole the crown jewels of cybersecurity—stripping protections from firms and government agencies worldwide. Here’s how it happened.
Andy Greenberg

Amid all the sleepless hours that Todd Leetham spent hunting ghosts inside his company’s network in early 2011, the experience that sticks with him most vividly all these years later is the moment he caught up with them. Or almost did. It was a spring evening, he says, three days—maybe four, time had become a blur—after he had first begun tracking the hackers who were rummaging through the computer systems of RSA, the corporate security giant where he worked. Leetham—a bald, bearded, and curmudgeonly analyst one coworker described to me as a “carbon-based hacker-finding machine”—had been glued to his laptop along with the rest of the company’s incident response team, assembled around the company’s glass-encased operations center in a nonstop, 24-hours-a-day hunt. And with a growing sense of dread, Leetham had finally traced the intruders’ footprints to their final targets: the secret keys known as “seeds,” a collection of numbers that represented a foundational layer of the security promises RSA made to its customers, including tens of millions of users in government and military agencies, defense contractors, banks, and countless corporations around the world. more...

"Our hearts are pained for the families of those we have lost in this horrific shooting," Mayor Sam Liccardo said of the incident at a Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority facility.
By David K. Li

Gunfire erupted at a Northern California rail yard on Wednesday, leading to "multiple fatalities" of public transit workers before the suspected shooter died, authorities said. Calls of shots fired came about 6:34 a.m. PT near 100 W. Younger Ave. in downtown San Jose, drawing a large law enforcement response, the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office said. "There are multiple injuries and multiple fatalities in this case," sheriff's Deputy Russell Davis told reporters at the scene. “The suspect is confirmed deceased." more...

The move is a sign that the investigation into the former president's company has entered a new phase.
By Dareh Gregorian

Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday blasted reports that a special grand jury had been convened to hear evidence against the Trump Organization, calling it “a continuation of the greatest Witch Hunt in American history.” “This is purely political, and an affront to the almost 75 million voters who supported me in the Presidential Election, and it’s being driven by highly partisan Democrat prosecutors,” the former president said in a statement. New York prosecutors’ imminent presentation of evidence against Trump’s business, first reported by the Washington Post, citing two people familiar with the development, signals that the criminal investigation into the former president has entered a new phase. more...

Sarah Whitten

Police in New Hampshire say they have an arrest warrant for Marilyn Manson. In a Facebook post Tuesday, the Gilford Police Department said the musician was wanted in connection to a misdemeanor assault that allegedly took place in 2019. The police said the two counts of misdemeanor simple assaults are related to an incident that took place at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion that involved a videographer. Manson performed a concert at that venue on Aug. 18, 2019 when the alleged assault occurred. It is unclear what transpired during the concert, but the videographer, who was subcontracted by a New Hampshire company to record the concert, was in the stage pit area when the alleged assault took place, police said. more...

The Associated Press

NEW YORK — New York prosecutors have convened a special grand jury to consider evidence in a criminal investigation into former President Donald Trump's business dealings, a person familiar with the matter told The Associated Press on Tuesday. The development signals that the Manhattan district attorney's office was moving toward seeking charges as a result of its two-year investigation, which included a lengthy legal battle to obtain Trump's tax records. The person familiar with the matter was not authorized to speak publicly and did so on condition of anonymity. The news was first reported by The Washington Post. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. is conducting a wide-ranging investigation into a variety of matters such as hush-money payments paid to women on Trump's behalf, property valuations and employee compensation. more...

By Tori B. Powell

Nearly 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre, a team of scholars is working to uncover the unmarked graves of victims with hopes of identifying some of their bodies. "We knew its history had been suppressed," Phoebe Stubblefield, a forensic anthropologist at the University of Florida, said in an interview with CBSN. The first challenge, then, was finding where the dead are buried. Between May 31 and June 1, 1921, a White mob looted and destroyed a section of Tulsa, Oklahoma, called Greenwood, where many Black families lived at the time. It was known to some as "the Black Wall Street." The mob was fueled by claims that a Black teenager attacked a White woman. more...

By The Oregonian/OregonLive

Portland police on Tuesday declared a riot amid a destructive downtown demonstration held on the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder. About 200 people gathered Tuesday night outside the Multnomah County Justice Center. Some in the crowd lit fireworks and a dumpster fire, tagged the Justice Center with graffiti and broke windows at nearby Portland City Hall. Some also threw water bottles and fireworks directly at police officers. more...

Sinéad Baker

US officials believe that Russia may be behind the suspected directed-energy attacks on US government employees around the world, Politico's Lara Seligman and Andrew Desiderio reported. Three current and former officials told Politico that US officials suspect the GRU, Russia's military-intelligence agency. But the report added that the investigators did not have a smoking gun tying the suspected attacks to Russia. A congressional official who was briefed on the issue told Politico that US officials told lawmakers the investigation was expanding and was focused on whether the GRU was involved. more...

By CNN

Alex Ferro, a top aide to Rep. Carlos Gimenez (R-FL), says he spoke with both the Capitol Police and the FBI on the morning of January 6 after overhearing a man in tactical gear talk about storming the FBI building just hours before the deadly insurrection. CNN's Jim Acosta speaks with the Florida congressman about what his staffer observed while the pair were standing inside the lobby of the Hyatt Regency near Capitol Hill. video...

Stuart Anderson

Donald Trump’s tariffs and the trade war his administration launched against China turned out to be far more damaging than many believed. That is the conclusion of research finding companies, consumers and the U.S. economy paid a heavy price for the Trump administration’s protectionist trade policies. In new research, Mary Amiti, an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and Sang Hoon Kong and David Weinstein, both economists at Columbia University, used movements in stock prices to measure the response to policy announcements on tariffs and the escalation of the U.S.-China trade war initiated by the Trump administration. “Stock prices are well suited for this purpose because firm market value equals the expected present value of future firm profits,” according to Amiti, Kong and Weinstein. “Therefore, movements in stock prices tell us about changes in the expected future value of firm-specific capital (both tangible and intangible).” more...

Newsbreak

Michael Cohen , Donald Trump 's former personal attorney, on Wednesday mocked the former president, who is currently facing a criminal probe into his organization, by sharing a photoshopped image of him in a jail cell. Cohen said on Twitter that "troubles" for Trump "will keep on coming." "Soon enough, Donald and Associates will be held responsible for their actions," Cohen wrote, noting that the New York attorney general's office and the Manhattan district attorney are investigating the Trump Organization. more...

The fix was in, and any remaining doubts about Trump’s last attorney general putting propaganda and personal loyalty ahead of the rule of law just went out the window.
Lloyd Green

What remains of Bill Barr’s sullied reputation was blown up when federal district Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled that the government must turn over the memorandum, which the public has yet to fully see and that the Justice Department relied upon in declining to prosecute the 45th president. Not only was Barr being personally “disingenuous” by announcing his decision before the Mueller report was released and pretending he used the report to reach a conclusion instead of simply announcing the one he’d come to before the special counsel’s work had even finished his work, she wrote, “but DOJ has been disingenuous to this Court.” more...

Debbie Elliott, Marisa Peñaloza

It's been 100 years since the Tulsa Race Massacre — one of the worst episodes of racial violence in U.S. history. An armed white mob attacked Greenwood, a prosperous Black community in Tulsa, Okla., killing as many as 300 people. What was known as Black Wall Street was burned to the ground. "Mother, I see men with guns," said Florence Mary Parrish, a small child looking out the window on the evening of May 31, 1921, when the siege began. "And my great-grandmother was shushing her, saying, 'I'm reading now, don't bother me,' " says Anneliese M. Bruner, a descendant of the Parrish family. But the child became more insistent. more...

Minority leader Mitch McConnell opposes a bill for a 9/11-style panel that could unearth embarrassing facts about the role of Trump and his supporters
Hugo Lowell

Top Senate Republicans are making a concerted effort to quash the creation of a 9/11-style commission to investigate the Capitol attack, deeply endangering the bill’s passage amid fears about what a high-profile inquiry into the events of 6 January might uncover. The Republican Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell, has said he opposes the commission bill in its current form and several Republicans who have previously expressed support said they could no longer back it. McConnell’s opposition brings into sharp relief the treacherous path ahead for the legislation, which Senate Democrats could introduce as soon as this week, according to a source briefed on the matter. more...

The vast majority of House Republicans voted against a bipartisan, 9/11-style panel – no surprise from a party still in thrall to Trump
David Smith

“Tuesday, September 11, 2001, dawned temperate and nearly cloudless in the eastern United States.” So begins the report of the 9/11 commission, which investigated the terrorist attacks 20 years ago with bipartisan support. Will there be a similarly limpid introduction to a similarly weighty (567 pages) study of the deadly insurrection at the US Capitol in Washington on 6 January? Not if Republicans can help it. The formation of a January 6 commission passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday evening thanks to the Democratic majority and 35 Republicans. But 175 Republicans voted against it. It will be a similar story in the Senate, where the minority leader, Mitch McConnell, announced his opposition earlier on Wednesday. more...

Opinion by Karen Tumulty

Amid the furor over the purging of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) from the House Republican leadership, it can be easy to forget that she was not the only GOP lawmaker who voted in January to impeach President Donald Trump a second time. What made Cheney stand out — along with frequent television guest Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) — is the persistence of their criticism of Trump and his role in sparking deadly mob violence at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. more...

By David A. Fahrenthold and Josh Dawsey
Former president Donald Trump charged the Secret Service more than $40,000 this spring for rooms that Trump’s own protective detail used while guarding him at his Mar-a-Lago Club, according to federal spending records. The records show that Trump’s club charged the Secret Service $396.15 every night starting Jan. 20, the day he left the White House and moved full-time into his Palm Beach, Fla., club. more...

By Reuters Staff

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday said he would not allow his Justice Department to seize the phone or email records of reporters, saying that any such move would be “simply wrong.” more...

Marco della Cava, USA TODAY

The handcuffed man lies prone on the ground. Police officers crowd around, at one point kneeling on the man’s shoulder blade. A video is being filmed. He cries out, “Please don’t kill me, please don’t kill me.” He is later taken away by officers to a hospital where he is pronounced dead. Those are not the final moments of George Floyd, a Black man who died May 25, 2020, after being restrained for more than nine minutes by Derek Chauvin, a white former Minneapolis police officer and now convicted murderer. more...

By HOPE YEN

WASHINGTON (AP) — With a showdown vote looming, Senate Republicans are misrepresenting the timeline of a proposed independent commission to investigate the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol insurrection. The House easily approved the bill last week with 35 Republicans signing on. But the measure faces an uncertain fate in the evenly divided Senate. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell is opposed and former President Donald Trump is demanding the effort be quashed. On Sunday, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, suggested that a roadblock to gaining GOP support is the commission’s timing, echoing concerns from Republican leaders last week that the panel’s final report could extend into the 2022 midterm election year. more...

One has to ask the question is the right wing media with or working for the Russians.

The network has a fraught relationship with the truth and the 2020 election.
Eric Levai

When One American News Network (OAN) aired the My Pillow Guy’s 2020 election fraud documentary, the company put up a massive disclaimer before it ran, noting that it was an independently produced film by Mike Lindell and the news network had nothing to do with it. That came as OAN was facing a possibly lawsuit over its constant inaccurate claims of election fraud in 2020. Perhaps it should have been similarly rigorous with the films it aired before the election as well. U.S. intelligence officials concluded that The Ukraine Hoax: Impeachment, Biden Cash, and Mass Murder, a film which aired on OAN in January 2020, was produced by Russian intelligence agents Konstantin Kilimnik and Andrii Derkach, according to a report released yesterday by the Director of National Intelligence. more...

CNN

Two years since Ronald Greene's death -- and two days since Louisiana authorities released a series of videos of their encounter with him -- his mother says she's still in shock. "Just trying to... bring it into reality, that this has happened to my son, grief stricken isn't the word," Mona Hardin told CNN on Saturday. "It's horrific, it's so evil." Greene died after a police chase and his death has been the subject of a two-year investigation. video...

The American Jewish Congress called on the congresswoman to apologize and retract her comments, saying "such comparisons demean the Holocaust & contaminate American political speech."
By Allan Smith

Republican lawmakers this weekend blasted Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., for comparing the House mask mandate to the Holocaust. The Republicans who criticized Greene were among those who either voted to impeach former President Donald Trump earlier this year or, in addition, voted to strip Greene of her committee assignments. Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., recently ousted from GOP leadership after she continued to refute Trump's electoral falsehoods, lambasted Greene’s comparison as "evil lunacy" in a tweet. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., and one of three Republican House members to vote both for Trump's impeachment and to strip Greene of her committee assignments, tweeted that Greene's remarks amount to "Absolute sickness." more...

Official's phone logs offer blow-by-blow account of the disaster as it unfolded.
Tim De Chant

Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s office knew of looming natural gas shortages on February 10, days before a deep freeze plunged much of the state into blackouts, according to documents obtained by E&E News and reviewed by Ars. Abbott’s office first learned of the likely shortfall in a phone call from then-chair of the Public Utility Commission of Texas DeAnne Walker. In the days leading up to the power outages that began on February 15, Walker and the governor’s office spoke 31 more times. Walker also spoke with regulators, politicians, and utilities dozens of times about the gas curtailments that threatened the state’s electrical grid. The PUC chair’s diary for the days before the outage shows her schedule dominated by concerns over gas curtailments and the impact they would have on electricity generation. Before and during the disaster, she was on more than 100 phone calls with various agencies and utilities regarding gas shortages. After the blackouts began, Abbott appeared on Fox News to falsely assert that wind turbines were the driving force behind the outages. more...

By Daniel Politi

When Ronald Greene, a 49-year-old Black man, died in May 2019, police told his family that it happened after his car crashed into a tree during a chase with officers. The bodycam footage finally released this week by Louisiana State Police shows that wasn’t even close to the whole story. The police released the footage, which came from nine body camera and dash camera videos, on Friday shortly after the Associated Press obtained and published portions of the footage. The shocking videos showed how police stunned, punched, and dragged Greene as he repeatedly yells “I’m sorry” after he led them on a high-speed chase when he didn’t pull over. more...

A CNN spokesperson confirmed to the Guardian that the network has parted ways with Santorum.
Lauren Aratani

CNN has dropped former Republican US senator Rick Santorum as a senior political commentator after racist remarks he made about Native Americans at an event in April. News of Santorum’s termination was first reported by HuffPost. A CNN spokesperson confirmed to the Guardian that the network has parted ways with Santorum. No further comment on the firing was provided, though an anonymous CNN executive told HuffPost that “leadership wasn’t particularly satisfied with that appearance. None of the anchors wanted to book him.” Speaking at an event for the Young Americans Foundation, a conservative youth group, Santorum said that there was “nothing” in the US before Europeans colonizers arrived. more...

Republicans cared about Benghazi but do not give a shit about the coup attempt, the insurrection and the sacking of the U.S. Capitol.

Analysis by Maeve Reston and Stephen Collinson, CNN

(CNN) The growing Republican blockade against the creation of a bipartisan commission to investigate the US Capitol insurrection on January 6 has crystallized the party's fixation with the 2022 midterm elections. Even on a grave matter of national security, the GOP has concluded that the political price for standing with former President Donald Trump is preferable to the electoral cost of breaking with the disgraced former President. More than four months after Trump stoked the January 6 rebellion with his lies about the 2020 election, the vast majority of GOP lawmakers demonstrated this week that they see no upside for revisiting the dangerous events that unfolded at the Capitol even if it means that Americans will never get a full explanation of how close Trump's supporters came to overthrowing democracy -- findings that could prevent a similar incident from happening again. more...

Natalie Wade, AFP USA

An Instagram account from BLM in Paterson, New Jersey, issued a similar statement of solidarity, saying: “Our struggles are connected in many ways.” But the BLM declarations were only general claims of support for Palestinians. They made no mention of Hamas, which the US, European Union, Israel and the Organization of American States consider a terrorist organization. AFP made repeated attempts to reach BLM for comment but had not received a response by the time of publication. more...


Federal authorities investigating alleged sex trafficking by GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz have secured the cooperation of the congressman's ex-girlfriend, according to people familiar with the matter. Gaetz has denied the allegations. video...

Conrad Wilson

On Aug. 26, Kevin Phomma was arrested during a racial justice demonstration outside the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building in Portland, Ore. Prosecutors say Phomma sprayed police officers with bear repellant, so the U.S. Department of Justice charged him with civil disorder, a felony. Fast forward to Jan. 6, where Reed Christensen, a Republican Party leader from Oregon's Washington County walked up the steps of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. According to the FBI, Christensen struck police with his fist. Later, federal prosecutors filed charges, including civil disorder. In the last year, the Justice Department has turned extensively to civil disorder, a once rarely used law, to crack down on crimes they say were committed during protests and other unrest. more...

Opinion by Elie Honig

(CNN) This needs to be said right up front about the pending Justice Department investigation of Rep. Matt Gaetz: there's still a lot that we don't know. He has steadfastly, even furiously, denied any wrongdoing. But the facts that have emerged -- including new CNN reporting that federal prosecutors are attempting to obtain cooperation from Gaetz's ex-girlfriend -- seem likely to paint a bleak picture for Gaetz moving forward.

Joel Greenberg. Gaetz's onetime pal and political ally Joel Greenberg -- who faces a 33-count federal indictment, charged with crimes ranging from sex trafficking of a minor to bribery to identity theft to stalking -- reportedly is cooperating with federal prosecutors and providing information about Gaetz's conduct, including alleged encounters with women who were given cash or gifts in exchange for sex. Greenberg has until the end of this week to finalize any plea agreement with prosecutors. more...

by The Associated Press

WINDSOR, Conn. (AP) — Amazon has temporarily shut down a new warehouse construction site in Connecticut after a seventh noose was found hanging over a beam, a series of incidents local police called “potential” hate crimes. Another rope tied like a noose was discovered Wednesday at the site in Windsor, about 10 miles (16 kilometers) north of Hartford, prompting an intensified law enforcement investigation and calls by the state NAACP on Thursday for the suspect or suspects to be brought to justice. more...

Trevor Noah’s show called out Republican efforts to rewrite history about the insurrection.
By Lee Moran

“The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” on Wednesday went back in time to rip Republicans over their desperate attempts to rewrite history about the Jan. 6 insurrection. The Comedy Central show turned GOP lawmakers’ downplaying of the violence into a ’50s style educational video. It contrasts comments from lawmakers with footage of the violent mob of then-President Donald Trump’s supporters storming the U.S. Capitol. video...

By Clara Hill

The Lincoln Project has published a new attack ad targeting the Republican party after its ouster of Rep Liz Cheney from her leadership role in the House of Representatives. The conservative anti-Trump group shared the 38-second new video titled “Allegiance” on YouTube on 17 May, and it showcases the unwavering dedication to former president Donald Trump among nearly every elected Republican. “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America” is repeated by a round of voices while images from classic symbols of American national identity are shown in the background, such as the flag and the Statue of Liberty. It is then contrasted to footage from the insurrection at the Capitol Building on 6 January. more...

By David Edwards

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) on Sunday suggested that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is withholding "important information" about the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. During an interview on Fox News, Cheney told host Chris Wallace that she was ousted from Republican leadership because she refused to be "complicit" in spreading former President Donald Trump's so-called "Big Lie" about the 2020 election being stolen. Wallace noted that Cheney has argued that Trump is "dangerous" for the Republican Party and for the country. "I ask this about both McCarthy and Elise Stefanik (R-NY)," Wallace said. "Are they being complicit in what you consider the Trump lies?" more...

Defending white people from being called a terrorist is apparently more important than defending America from terrorism.
By Dean Obeidallah, MSNBC Opinion Columnist

In the weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attack, former President George W. Bush famously declared in a joint address to Congress: "Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists." Apparently to today’s Republicans, that axiom only applies if the terrorists are brown or Black — because when it comes to the overwhelmingly white mob that attacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, the GOP is doing everything it can to whitewash and downplay the attack. But what we saw that day was by definition an “insurrection,” as well as an act of “domestic terrorism.” Period. That’s not hyperbole or my opinion. FBI Director Christopher Wray labeled it the latter in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in March. more...

Newsbreak

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D) on Thursday advised Maricopa County officials to replace all voting machines that were turned over to the private contractor carrying out an audit of the 2020 presidential election. The Washington Post reports that Hobbs cited “grave concerns regarding the security and integrity” of the machines and their suitability for future elections. In a letter obtained by the Post, Hobbs, Arizona’s chief elections officer, expressed concerns regarding the machines that were recently returned by Cyber Ninjas, the firm which has had no prior experience in auditing elections. more...

Christopher Wilson

False claims, intraparty feuds and the need to potentially replace millions of dollars in equipment are among the issues that continue to plague a partisan election audit ordered by Arizona Republicans seeking to prove that the 2020 presidential race was stolen. After months of court battles, a review of the November election vote in Maricopa County — where the majority of Arizonans reside — was begun at the instruction of the GOP-controlled state Senate late last month. To conduct the audit, Arizona Senate Republicans brought in a private Florida-based company, Cyber Ninjas, whose founder and CEO, Doug Logan, has pushed false claims of fraud in the 2020 election. Numerous Republicans nationwide have followed former President Donald Trump’s lead in recent months to insist that the election was somehow illegitimate — a claim unsupported by facts. more...

By Tom Porter

Some GOP senators oppose the creation of a commission to investigate the Capitol riot because they fear it will distract from their 2022 midterm campaigns, Republican whip Sen. John Thune has said. Thune told CNN on Wednesday that there was concern among members that a commission "could be weaponized politically and drug into next year." "I want our midterm message to be on the kinds of things that the American people are dealing with: That's jobs and wages and the economy and national security, safe streets and strong borders - not re-litigating the 2020 elections," Thune told CNN. "A lot of our members, and I think this is true of a lot of House Republicans, want to be moving forward and not looking backward. Anything that gets us rehashing the 2020 elections I think is a day lost on being able to draw a contrast between us and the Democrats' very radical left-wing agenda." more...

Alison Durkee Forbes Staff

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro and other state leaders are calling for lawyers who led post-election lawsuits trying to overturn the election results to be sanctioned—including attorney Rudy Giuliani—becoming the latest battleground state to go after GOP lawyers and plaintiffs who unsuccessfully challenged the vote count. Shapiro and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf sent a letter to the Attorney Grievance Committee at the Supreme Court of the State of New York, where Giuliani is licensed to practice law, as part of the committee’s investigation into Giuliani, which says the attorney should be “appropriately disciplined” for his “reckless conduct” after the election. more...

The lies from the right never stop.

Add this to the list of misleading claims about the president's health.
Dan Evon

Biden did not “fake” drive this truck, and this all-electric vehicle was not equipped with two steering wheels. Mike Levine, Ford North America product communications manager, confirmed to the automative news website Jalopnik  that “there was no other set of controls” in the vehicle Biden drove. more...

Republicans say Jan. 6 attack was not an ‘armed’ Attack even though rioters had mace, knives and a stun gun, as well as makeshift weapons like flagpoles, fire extinguishers and at least one had a gun.

Andrew Solender Forbes Staff

The Department of Justice on Monday filed a superseding indictment against Maryland resident Christopher Alberts alleging he carried a semi-automatic handgun on Capitol grounds on Jan. 6, undercutting Republican claims the attack was orderly and largely unarmed. Alberts was arrested attempting to flee from law enforcement on Jan. 6, carrying with him an unlicensed Taurus G2C pistol and a high-capacity magazine, according to the court documents. Federal prosecutors also allege in the indictment Alberts resisted arrest and “knowingly engaged in an act of physical violence” on Capitol grounds. Alberts, who has pleaded not guilty, appears to be the only person charged so far with carrying a firearm during the attack, but other weapons wielded by rioters include mace, knives and a stun gun, as well as makeshift weapons like flagpoles and fire extinguishers. more...

By Jeremy Herb and Jessica Schneider, CNN

Washington (CNN)The Trump administration secretly sought and obtained the 2017 phone and email records of a CNN correspondent, the latest instance where federal prosecutors have taken aggressive steps targeting journalists in leak investigations. The Justice Department informed CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr, in a May 13 letter, that prosecutors had obtained her phone and email records covering two months, between June 1, 2017 to July 31, 2017. The letter listed phone numbers for Starr's Pentagon extension, the CNN Pentagon booth phone number and her home and cell phones, as well as Starr's work and personal email accounts. more...

Carlson, who has repeatedly downplayed the Capitol insurrection, claimed that U.S. Capitol Police members were politically threatening Republicans in Congress.
Justin Baragona

Fox News host Tucker Carlson lashed out at members of the U.S. Capitol Police who blasted Republican opposition to an independent commission to investigate the violent Jan. 6 insurrection, calling their letter nothing more than a “ransom note” from an “armed political action committee.” Just ahead of Wednesday’s House vote on the establishment of the inquiry into the Capitol riots, a letter signed by the “Proud Members of the United States Capitol Police” condemned Republicans who didn’t want to establish the independent commission. No names were attached to the statement. more...

By Leia Idliby

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) attacked Black Lives Matter protesters while defending insurrectionists on the House Floor — claiming, “The people that breached the Capitol on Jan. 6 are being abused.” Greene began her speech on Monday by speaking out against creating a commission to study the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, arguing that Black Lives Matter protests were also an “insurrection.” “The question that comes to mind is this: What about all the riots that happened during the summer of 2020 after the death of George Floyd?” Greene asked. “What about all the damage caused to federal buildings, churches, people’s businesses, and innocent people that were killed, like David Dorn?“ more...

James Breheny of New Jersey is alleged to have been in contact with Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and to have invited him to a meeting of “multiple patriot groups” just before Jan. 6.
Ken Bensinger, Jessica Garrison

Federal prosecutors have charged a 14th member of the Oath Keepers with involvement in the Capitol insurrection, in this case a New Jersey man who they say was in contact with the group’s founder Stewart Rhodes and invited him to a “leadership meeting of multiple patriot groups” in southeastern Pennsylvania just days prior to Jan. 6. According to a criminal complaint filed in federal court in the District of Columbia, James Breheny also forwarded Rhodes a message explaining that the meeting was “our last chance to organize before the show. This meeting will be for leaders only.” more...

Pilar Melendez

A leader of the New Jersey chapter of the Oath Keepers has been charged for allegedly planning with other members of the paramilitary group to storm the U.S. Capitol. James Breheny, the Bergen County, New Jersey, “coordinator” for the far-right group, has been charged with several crimes, including violent entry and impeding an official proceeding, for his role in the Jan. 6 siege. According to a criminal complaint unsealed on Thursday, Breheny had been planning for the siege with other members as early as December, when he invited Oath Keeper founder Stewart Rhodes to a meeting of “multiple patriot groups” three days before the Capitol riots to “prepare.” “This will be the day we get our comms on point with multiple other patriot groups, share rally points etc,” Breheny said, according to the complaint. “This one is important and I believe this is our last chance to organize before the show. This meeting will be for leaders only.” more...


“It really signals that she thinks, not only is this a strong—and likely winnable—criminal case, but that something is going to happen relatively soon,” says former SDNY prosecutor Danya Perry, discussing the New York AG joining the criminal probe into Trump’s businesses. video...


Ronald Greene, a Black man who died after a pursuit by Louisiana State Police in 2019, can be heard apologizing to officers and telling them he was scared before being tased, dragged and kicked in newly obtained body camera video by the Associated Press. CNN's Ryan Young has more. vidoe...


Rachel Maddow reviews some of the blunders by the Secret Service as reported in the new book, "Zero Fail," by Washington Post reporter Carol Leonnig, and wonders how the Biden administration can have confidence in the competence of their protection and safety. video...

Barbara Sprunt

Following overwhelming support from both chambers of Congress, President Biden signed legislation that addresses hate crimes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, with particular emphasis on the increase in violence against Asian Americans. At an event in the East Room of the White House, Biden thanked lawmakers for coming together to pass the legislation. He said standing against hatred and racism, which he called "the ugly poison that has long haunted and plagued our nation," is what brings Americans together. "My message to all of those who are hurting is: We see you and the Congress has said, we see you. And we are committed to stop the hatred and the bias," he said. more...

By Devan Cole, CNN

Washington (CNN)When the House on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved legislation intended to counter a rise in anti-Asian hate crimes amid the coronavirus pandemic, 62 GOP members voted against the measure, which was also opposed by one Republican senator when it cleared that chamber last month. more...

Lovely Ann Warren

(Reuters) -New York State Police searched the home of Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren on Wednesday as part of a criminal investigation, police said. A CBS TV affiliate in Rochester reported that her husband was the target of the police operation held at her home. Warren's husband, Timothy Granison, was taken into custody, according to an NBC TV affiliate. Warren, who is a Democrat, is in the middle of a re-election campaign with a party primary coming up next month. more...

The Democratic ex-president was candid in remarks to donors and advisers, according to Battle for the Soul by Edward-Isaac Dovere
Martin Pengelly

For much of Donald Trump’s presidency, Barack Obama largely abided by the convention that former presidents do not publicly criticize or attack their successors. Obama jettisoned any such caution during the 2020 election that put his own vice-president, Joe Biden, in the White House. But behind the scenes, with donors and advisers, Obama was reportedly much more candid. According to a new book, Obama called Trump a “madman”, a “racist, sexist pig”, “that fucking lunatic” and a “corrupt motherfucker”. The remarks are reported in Battle for the Soul: Inside the Democrats’ Campaigns to Defeat Donald Trump by Edward-Isaac Dovere, a staff writer at the Atlantic, which will be published next week. The Guardian obtained a copy. more...

Ultimately, 35 Republicans joined Democrats in approving the commission.
By MELANIE ZANONA, NICHOLAS WU and OLIVIA BEAVERS

House GOP divisions were on full display Wednesday as dozens of Republicans broke with their party leadership and former President Donald Trump to support a proposed commission investigating the Jan. 6 siege on the Capitol. The measure, which would task a bipartisan 10-person commission with delivering a report on the causes and facts of the insurrection by the end of the year, passed the House by a 252-175 vote with every Democrat and 35 Republicans in support. more...

By Jamiel Lynch, CNN

(CNN) Ronald Greene, a Black man who died after a pursuit by Louisiana State Police in 2019, can be heard apologizing to officers and telling them he was scared before being tased, dragged and kicked in newly obtained body camera video by the Associated Press. The AP posted three clips, totaling just over two minutes in length, from the video it says was 46 minutes long. CNN has not obtained the original video and does not know what else can be seen in the unpublished parts of the video. CNN previously reported that Greene died after struggling with law enforcement following a pursuit that ended in a crash on May 10, 2019, according to a preliminary report from the criminal investigations division of the Louisiana State Patrol (LSP). more...

From Donald Trump on down, Republicans are increasingly opposed to investigating the Jan. 6 riot. Democrats must find the truth with or without them.
Kurt Bardella

It makes no sense to expect congressional Republicans to be willing partners in any effort to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol attack that the FBI has labeled domestic terrorism. Their former president's partisans stormed the building, and they themselves are trying to erase history. Exhibit A: Rep. Andrew Clyde of Georgia, who during a House Oversight and Reform Committee hearing last week characterized the violence of Jan. 6 as a “normal tourist visit.” Never mind that there's a photograph of Clyde barricading a door to the House floor. more...

Sonam Sheth and Lauren Frias

The US Capitol Police distanced itself Wednesday from an unofficial and anonymous statement reportedly from some officers, saying the agency "does NOT take positions on legislation." "A statement is circling on social media, which expresses an opinion about the proposed legislation to create a commission to investigate January 6," the USCP said in a statement to Insider. "This is NOT an official USCP statement. The Department has no way of confirming it was even authored by USCP personnel." The USCP also posted its statement in a tweet. more...

By Zak Hudak

Washington — The last known survivors of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre are calling on Congress to consider paying reparations for the continued damage done to their Oklahoma community.  The House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties on Wednesday heard testimony from three centenarians about a violent mob's riot 100 years ago through  the thriving Tulsa neighborhood of Greenwood, known at the time as "Black Wall Street."  "I still see Black men being shot, black bodies lying in the street. I still smell smoke and see fire. I still see Black businesses being burned. I still hear airplanes flying overhead. I hear the screams," said Viola Fletcher, the oldest living survivor of the event. "I have lived through the massacre every day." more...

Senate Bill 8 bars abortion at six weeks with no exception for rape or incest, amounting to a near-total ban
Mary Tuma

The Texas Republican governor Greg Abbott has signed into law one of the most extreme six-week abortion bans in the US, despite strong opposition from the medical and legal communities, who warn the legislation could topple the state’s court system and already fragile reproductive healthcare network. “This bill ensures that every unborn child who has a heartbeat will be saved from the ravages of abortion,” said Abbott, flanked by several members of the Texas legislature this morning. more...

Bill Chappell, Andrea Bernstein, Ilya Marritz

New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating former President Donald Trump's business, the Trump Organization, "in a criminal capacity," her office says, ratcheting up scrutiny of Trump's real estate transactions and other dealings. The state attorney general is joining forces with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who has been conducting a separate criminal inquiry into Trump's business practices and possible insurance or financial fraud as well as alleged hush money payments to two women who said they had affairs with Trump before he became president. Trump has in the past refused to cooperate with the investigations, calling them instances of "political persecution." Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for Vance to subpoena Trump's tax returns and other financial documents. Here's a brief recap of where things currently stand: more...

Republicans investigated Benghazi but are refusing to investigate the attempted coup, the insurrection and the sacking of the U.S. Capitol.

Alayna Treene

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told his fellow Republicans during a closed-door caucus lunch Tuesday he can't support a Jan. 6 commission in its current form, two sources familiar with his remarks tell Axios. Why it matters: Senate Republicans are bracing for a House vote Wednesday. Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) opposes the commission but several Republicans are expected to buck leadership — making it more difficult for Senate Republicans to dismiss it. What we're hearing: McConnell made comments to his colleagues along the lines of, "There’s 41 of us who could change this, and I think we should,” according to one of the sources. A second source confirmed the nature of the comments. more...

Republicans investigated Benghazi but are refusing to investigate the attempted coup, the insurrection and the sacking of the U.S. Capitol.

Analysis by Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large

(CNN) Days after a bipartisan agreement was reached in the House to form a commission to examine the roots and events of the January 6 riot at the US Capitol, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced Tuesday that he opposes the bill. "Given the political misdirections that have marred this process, given the now duplicative and potentially counterproductive nature of this effort, and given the Speaker's shortsighted scope that does not examine interrelated forms of political violence in America, I cannot support this legislation," said McCarthy. Which doesn't make any sense because, well, the legislation that would have created the commission was developed by Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) and John Katko (R-New York). And Katko had made clear that he was negotiating on behalf of and with the imprimatur of the Republican leadership. more...

By Sonia Moghe and Kara Scannell, CNN

(CNN) New York Attorney General Letitia James is joining the Manhattan district attorney's office in a criminal investigation of the Trump Organization, James' office said Tuesday. The attorney general office's investigation into the Trump Organization, which has been underway since 2019, will also continue as a civil probe, but the office recently informed Trump Organization officials of the criminal component. "We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature. We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA," James' spokesman Fabien Levy told CNN. "We have no additional comment." more...

Damon Weaver was 11 when he interviewed the former president in Aug. 2009.
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The student reporter who gained national acclaim when he interviewed President Barack Obama at the White House in 2009 has died of natural causes, his family says. Damon Weaver was 23 when he died May 1, his sister, Candace Hardy, told the Palm Beach Post. Further details were not released. He had been studying communications at Albany State University in Georgia. more...

By Ashley Collman

Tucker Carlson's old editor had some choice words to say about the Fox News host's recent anti-mask rant. On Monday, Carlson went on a diatribe against parents who make their children wear face masks outdoors, saying it "should be illegal" and amounts to "child abuse." Carlson even told viewers to call the police if they saw it happening. "Your response when you see children wearing masks as they play should be no different from your response to seeing someone beat a kid in Walmart - call the police immediately," Carlson said. more...

Trump wanted his supporters First Amendment rights protected but has Trump trampled the rights of those who he does not agree with and those who do not support him.

By Jenni Fink

Former President Donald Trump was criticized for failing to squelch the Capitol riot, but ahead of the January 6 rally, he requested that the Secretary of Defense pull out all the stops to protect people's First Amendment rights. Christopher Miller, former acting secretary of defense, defended his response to the Capitol riot before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. He pushed back on beliefs that there were delays in the deployment of federal resources and told legislators he filled the request he received for National Guard members. more...

Will Carless USA TODAY

The donations started coming in around 10 p.m. on Dec. 17. A donor named Li Zhang gave $100. A few minutes later, someone named Jun Li donated $100. Then Hao Xu gave $20, followed shortly by $25 from a Ying Pei. In all, almost 1,000 people with Chinese surnames gave about $86,000 to a fundraiser on the crowdfunding platform GiveSendGo for members of the extremist street gang the Proud Boys. Their gifts made up more than 80% of the $106,107 raised for medical costs for members of the Proud Boys who were stabbed during violent clashes in Washington in mid-December. more...

By Kristine Phillips, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – Proud Boys leader Ethan Nordean lashed out at President Donald Trump, accusing him of misleading his supporters and then deserting them despite their unwavering loyalty. "We are now and always have been on our own. So glad he was able to pardon a bunch of degenerates as his last move and s--- on us on the way out," Nordean said in an expletive-laden message about the former president. "F--- you trump you left us on [t]he battle field bloody and alone." more...

Arwa Mahdawi

According to a lawyer for an alleged Capitol rioter, his client was brainwashed by Fox News into participating in the 6 January attack

Fighting Foxitis
For decades a debilitating disease has been spreading across America. Risk factors include being over 65, Republican and white. Symptoms include unhinged muttering, delusional thinking and an irresistible urge to storm the Capitol. The disease is called “Foxitis” and a lawyer called Joseph Hurley, who is representing alleged US Capitol rioter Anthony Antonio, wants us to believe his client is suffering from it.

Antonio lost his job at the beginning of the pandemic and spent the next six months sitting at home watching Fox, Hurley told a DC court on Thursday. “He became hooked with what I call ‘Foxitis’ or ‘Foxmania’ and … started believing what was being fed to him.” According to Hurley, Fox brainwashed Antonio into believing Trump wanted him to march on Washington as part of a patriotic movement.” Now Antonio is facing five charges over his role in the January riot. more...

Kevin Breuninger

House Republicans voted Friday to make Rep. Elise Stefanik their conference chair, days after ousting Rep. Liz Cheney over her opposition to former President Donald Trump’s continued influence in the party and her denouncements of his “big lie” that the 2020 election was rigged. Republicans convened around 8:30 a.m. ET at the Congressional Visitors Center, the same room where they expelled Cheney from the No. 3-ranking position by a voice vote two days earlier. The vote for Stefanik was conducted by secret ballot. The final tally was 134-46. more...

By Victoria Albert

Colonial Pipeline paid a ransom to the hackers who infiltrated its system and forced the shutdown of a major pipeline supplying fuel to the East Coast last week, multiple sources confirmed to CBS News on Thursday. One source familiar with the investigation said the company paid a multi-million dollar ransom. The sources did not provide a specific timeline for the payment but said the company paid the hackers shortly after its systems started locking up last week. The company has not publicly confirmed the payment. Bloomberg News, which first reported the payment, said the company paid the hackers $5 million. CBS News has not confirmed that figure. more...

CNN's Jim Acosta and CNN medical analyst Dr. Jonathan Reiner discuss the blowback that Fox News host Tucker Carlson has received over his anti-vaccine rhetoric. video...

By Em Steck and Andrew Kaczynski, CNN

(CNN) Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene confronted Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez outside the House chamber on Wednesday afternoon. The incident, first reported by The Washington Post, was just the latest of several hostile confrontations the Georgia congresswoman has had with her Democratic colleagues, but her interactions with the New York Democrat predate Greene's election to Congress in 2020. During a February 2019 visit to congressional offices at the US Capitol with associates who include a man who would later enter the Capitol during the January 6 insurrection, Greene -- then a conservative activist -- can be seen taunting Ocasio-Cortez's staff outside the congresswoman's locked office by talking through a mailbox slot urging her to come out. In the video, from a since-deleted Facebook Live of Greene's that was saved by CNN's KFile, Greene tells Ocasio-Cortez to "get rid of your diaper," referring to the congresswoman's office as a "day care." Greene repeatedly indicates throughout her stream that security has been called on them. more...

By Larry Buchanan, Karen Yourish, Ainara Tiefenthäler, Jon Huang and Blacki Migliozzi

The 38-minute video below shows how Donald J. Trump’s persistent repetition of lies and calls to action over two months created an alternate reality that he won re-election. Mr. Trump’s words, which were echoed and amplified by the rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, are a central focus of his second impeachment trial. In hundreds of public statements from Nov. 4, 2020, to Jan. 6, 2021, Mr. Trump repeatedly used phrases like “we won the election” and “won it by a landslide,” and he said that the election was “rigged” and “stolen” by the Democrats. Such assertions have been proven false by the courts and elections officials across the country. Mr. Trump’s language later signaled to his supporters that they needed to “fight” because “you’ll never take back our country with weakness.” Some of Mr. Trump’s statements were outright lies (that he won). Some were his own sentiments (“this is a disgrace to our country”). Some were oblique calls to action (“if you don’t fight to save your country with everything you have, you’re not going to have a country left”). more...

By Kristin Wilson and Daniella Diaz, CNN

(CNN) Rep. Liz Cheney is outlining her next steps in the aftermath of her ousting from leadership, telling NBC, "I intend to be the leader, one of the leaders, in a fight to help to restore our party," and warning that former President Donald Trump is willing "to unravel the democracy to come back into power." The Wyoming congresswoman, and now former House Republican Conference chair, also didn't rule out a run for president in the "Today" interview that aired Thursday morning, but she did confirm she will run for reelection for her US House seat next year. Cheney said "silence is not an option" when speaking out against Trump, and she said admonishments from her fellow Republicans to move forward are not possible because the damage that the former president is causing is "an ongoing threat." The daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney reiterated her assertion Wednesday that Trump cannot become president again. "He's unfit," she said. "He never again can be anywhere close to the Oval Office." more...

by Sarah Katz , Tech Xplore

Fragmentation and aggregation attacks—or frag attacks—refer to a series of design flaws and programming security vulnerabilities affecting Wi-Fi devices. Recent studies have shown that any attacker within radio range of a target can potentially exploit these flaws. Research indicates that while the design flaws may prove more challenging to abuse due to the need for user interaction or uncommon network settings, the vulnerabilities related to programming pose a more significant risk. Unfortunately, these security flaws affect all contemporary Wi-Fi security protocols, from today's latest WPA3 spanning back to WEP beginning in 1997. This means that a plethora of devices have likely had similar vulnerabilities for many years. more...

by Purdue University

Making fresh water out of seawater usually requires huge amounts of energy. The most widespread process for desalination is called reverse osmosis, which works by flowing seawater over a membrane at high pressure to remove the minerals. Now, Purdue University engineers have developed a variant of the process called "batch reverse osmosis," which promises better energy efficiency, longer-lasting equipment and the ability to process water of much higher salinity. It could end up a difference-maker in water security around the world. more...

Eliza Relman

Rep. Liz Cheney said some of her Republican colleagues in Congress are opposed to a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6 Capitol riot because they helped provoke the attack or are otherwise culpable. Cheney, who was ousted from leadership by her own party on Wednesday, has repeatedly called for a bipartisan commission comprising retired officials with subpoena power to investigate the attack on the Capitol. But GOP leadership and many other lawmakers are opposed to a commission solely focused on the deadly assault. Instead, they want to expand the focus to include violence that resulted from Black Lives Matter protests last summer. "There is real concern among a number of members of my own party about a January 6 commission," Cheney said. "That kind of intense, narrow focus threatens people in my party who may have been playing a role they should not have been playing." more...

By Katelyn Polantz and Paula Reid, CNN

(CNN) The ex-Florida tax collector with close ties to Rep. Matt Gaetz is planning to plead guilty on Monday in a federal court in Florida, according to a new filing Thursday. As part of the deal, Joel Greenberg will cooperate with investigators in a wide-ranging probe, according to one source familiar with the matter. For months, federal investigators have been examining whether Gaetz broke federal sex trafficking, prostitution and public corruption laws and whether he had sex with a minor. more...

Hallie Jackson and Dartunorro Clark | NBC News

More than 100 influential Republicans plan to release a call for reforms within the GOP alongside a threat to form a new party if change isn't forthcoming, a person familiar with the effort said. The statement, set to be released Thursday, involves a "Call for American Renewal," a credo that declares that it is imperative to "either reimagine a party dedicated to our founding ideals or else hasten the creation of such an alternative." The push will include 13 yet-to-be-revealed principles that the signatories want the GOP to embrace. more...

Laurel Wamsley

A Minnesota judge has found aggravating factors in Derek Chauvin's murder of George Floyd — a finding that dramatically increases the likelihood of a longer sentence. Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer, was found guilty last month of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd in May 2020. more...

Donald Trump's hero, Andrew Jackson, showed a campaign based entirely on political comeuppance can work. For the GOP today, it could also be a winning strategy.
By David Mark, political analyst

From time to time, House members who have been elected to top party positions get deposed from those coveted roles. Usually, these internecine bouts of political bloodletting happen when an election has gone poorly and rank-and-file lawmakers want a proverbial head to roll. It's a sign of the unorthodox political times we're in that on Wednesday, we witnessed a rare instance of change in party leadership in the midst of a congressional term. House Republicans voted out Liz Cheney of Wyoming as chair of the House Republican Conference, the No. 3 position in House GOP leadership, over her unwillingness to keep quiet about former President Donald Trump's lies that the 2020 election was stolen. more...

Republicans are the party of cancel culture, if you do not go along with the lies Republicans tell they will cancel you.

Liz Cheney on Wednesday said she would ‘lead the fight’ to create a stronger Republican party.
Joan E Greve

Senator Lindsey Graham, a close ally of Donald Trump, argued Liz Cheney was ousted as House Republican conference chair because she “has taken a position regarding former President Trump which is out of the mainstream of the Republican”. That “position” seems to be acknowledging the fact that Trump lost the 2020 presidential election and thus Joe Biden is the legitimately elected president. “Today’s decision by the House Republican Conference regarding Congresswoman Cheney was not about her vote for impeachment,” Graham said. “It was about her belief President Trump should be purged from the GOP and those who objected to the results of the 2020 election should be disqualified from future leadership positions. more...

BY DARRAGH ROCHE

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has said those who try to "erase" former President Donald Trump from the Republican Party could end up "getting erased" from the GOP themselves. Graham spoke to Fox News' Sean Hannity on Monday and reiterated his belief that Trump was essential for the party going forward. He had expressed the same sentiment in another interview with Hannity last week. "The most popular Republican in America—it's not Lindsey Graham, is not Liz Cheney, it's Donald Trump," said Graham on Monday. more...

CBS News

Lawyers for relatives of Andrew Brown Jr., a Black man fatally shot by deputies, said Tuesday that body camera videos show that he didn't strike them with his car before they opened fire, contradicting a local prosecutor. Chance Lynch, a lawyer who viewed the footage in private with Brown's family, said Brown was sitting in his stationary car with his hands on the wheel when the first of numerous shots was fired. Family members had previously seen about 20 seconds of the video but were shown approximately 18 minutes on Tuesday under a judge's order. more...

Peter Weber

California gubernatorial candidate Caitlyn Jenner told CNN, in an interview broadcast Tuesday, that she "didn't even vote" in the 2020 election. But "Los Angeles County records show she actually did cast a ballot last fall," Politico reported Tuesday night, with notarized proof. Jenner didn't leave much wriggle room, telling CNN's Dana Bash she didn't vote for president or any of the 12 ballot measures because "I didn't see any propositions that I really had one side or the other." So on Election Day, Jenner said, "I just couldn't get excited about it. And I just wound up going to play golf and I said, eh, I'm not doing that." more...

The attack shut down Colonial Pipeline service on the East Coast.
Edward Moyer, Sean Keane, Andrew Morse

The FBI on Monday blamed a hacking group for a cyberattack that took down the main pipeline carrying gas to the densely populated East Coast, provoking worries about the vulnerability of critical systems. The law enforcement agency, which is investigating the May 7 hack, pinned responsibility on Darkside, a group that reportedly develops ransomware and sells it to other outfits. "The FBI confirms that the Darkside ransomware is responsible for the compromise of the Colonial Pipeline networks," the agency said in a statement. "We continue to work with the company and our government partners on the investigation." more...

Senator says McCarthy ‘trying to silence others in the party’ in service of Trump
Martin Pengelly in New York

The only woman in Republican Senate leadership complained about cancel culture on Monday, regarding the imminent removal of Liz Cheney, the only woman in Republican House leadership, because she opposes Donald Trump’s big lie that the presidential election was stolen. The Iowa senator Joni Ernst told reporters: “I feel it’s OK to go ahead and express what you feel is right to express and, you know, cancel culture is cancel culture no matter how you look at it. Unfortunately, I think there are those that are trying to silence others in the party.” “Cancel culture” has become a shibboleth of the modern Republican party, repeatedly invoked when public figures become embroiled in controversy regarding opinions or statements deemed to be racist, sexist or otherwise unacceptable. more...

Neil MacFarquhar

In the battle to stamp out extremism from the ranks of the police, lawmakers from California to Minnesota have proposed solutions they thought were straightforward. Some laws would empower the police to do more robust background checks of recruits, letting them vet social media to make sure new officers were not members of hate groups. Other laws would make it easier for departments to fire officers with ties to extremists. But legislators working to get these measures passed in recent months have found themselves confronting a thicket of obstacles and somewhat unexpected opposition, ranging from straight Republican vs. Democrat clashes to profound questions about protecting constitutional rights. more...

ALAN SUDERMAN and ERIC TUCKER

WASHINGTON (AP) — The operator of a major pipeline system that transports fuel across the East Coast said Saturday it had been victimized by a ransomware attack and had halted all pipeline operations to deal with the threat. The attack is unlikely to affect gasoline supply and prices unless it leads to a prolonged shutdown of the pipeline, experts said. Colonial Pipeline did not say what was demanded or who made the demand. Ransomware attacks are typically carried out by criminal hackers who scramble data, paralyzing victim networks, and demand a large payment to decrypt it. more...

By Elliot Hannon

It’s always been near certain that the U.S., along with every other nation, has severely undercounted the number of coronavirus cases and deaths attributed to the virus. The speed and scale of the pandemic made getting an accurate reading of its impact a challenge, but, as of Friday, the numbers in the U.S. currently stand at more than 32 million reported cases resulting in 580,000 deaths. Those numbers compiled by Johns Hopkins are grim, but a new analysis by researchers at the University of Washington puts the death toll in the U.S. far higher, at 905,000 deaths. more...

Anthony Antonio, who faces five charges over role in January riot, ‘started believing what was being fed to him’, lawyer says
Luke O'Neil

The lawyer for a Delaware man charged over the Capitol attack in January is floating a unique defense: Fox News made him do it. Anthony Antonio, who is facing five charges including violent entry, disorderly conduct and impeding law enforcement during civil disorder, fell prey to the persistent lies about the so-called “stolen election” being spread daily by Donald Trump and the rightwing network that served him, his attorney Joseph Hurley said during a video hearing on Thursday. Antonio spent the six months before the riots mainlining Fox News while unemployed, Hurley said, likening the side effects of such a steady diet of misinformation to a mental health syndrome. “Fox television played constantly,” he said. “He became hooked with what I call ‘Foxitis’ or ‘Foxmania’, and became interested in the political aspect and started believing what was being fed to him.” more...

Widely circulating coronavirus variants and persistent hesitancy about vaccines will keep the goal out of reach. The virus is here to stay, but vaccinating the most vulnerable may be enough to restore normalcy.
By Apoorva Mandavilli

Early in the pandemic, when vaccines for the coronavirus were still just a glimmer on the horizon, the term “herd immunity” came to signify the endgame: the point when enough Americans would be protected from the virus so we could be rid of the pathogen and reclaim our lives. Now, more than half of adults in the United States have been inoculated with at least one dose of a vaccine. But daily vaccination rates are slipping, and there is widespread consensus among scientists and public health experts that the herd immunity threshold is not attainable — at least not in the foreseeable future, and perhaps not ever. more...

One of the suspects fled the scene during the raid and remains at-large.
By Ben Kesslen

Pennsylvania authorities announced charges against a couple on Wednesday after finding almost $1 million of meth, six ghost guns, and nazi paraphernalia in their home during a raid. Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the charges brought against Christopher Weikert and Tara Gallucci on Friday after agents from the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigations and Pennsylvania State Police Special Emergency Response Team executed a search of the couple’s home Wednesday. more...

Sophia Ankel

Trump allies are growing increasingly concerned about the future after former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's office and apartment were raided by federal agents this week, according to CNN. On Wednesday, Giuliani, who acted as Trump's former attorney, was the target of two raids in which investigators seized several of his electronic devices as well as a computer belonging to his personal assistant. The searches were in connection to a criminal probe into Giuliani's dealings in Ukraine, The New York Times reported. Trump's allies and former members of his inner circle are now reportedly becoming increasingly worried about further raids and upcoming FBI investigations. more...

Is Manchin a fake democrat?

By Grace Segers

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said Friday he does not support a bill to make Washington, D.C. the 51st state, likely dooming the measure's chances in the Senate. Manchin argued that D.C. statehood should be addressed with a constitutional amendment. "If Congress wants to make D.C. a state, it should propose a constitutional amendment," Manchin said in an interview with the West Virginia MetroNews radio network. "It should propose a constitutional amendment and let the people of America vote." more...

Marc Kovac, The Columbus Dispatch

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A federal judge granted a preliminary injunction Friday barring Columbus police from using tear gas, pepper spray, wooden bullets and other so-called "non-lethal force" against nonviolent protesters. The decision favored 26 protesters who sued the city in U.S. District Court saying they were brutalized by Columbus police during protests following the murder of George Floyd last Memorial Day at the hands of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was recently convicted of murder in the case. Chief U.S. District Judge Algenon L. Marbley wrote that "some of the members of the Columbus Police Department had no regard for the rights secured by (the First Amendment of the Constitution) this bedrock principle of American democracy. This case is the sad tale of police officers, clothed with the awesome power of the state, run amok." more...

The case of Ariane McCree illustrates the patchwork nature of police body camera policies around the country.
By David Paredes, Vicky Nguyen and Rich Schapiro

It has been almost a year and a half since Ariane McCree was shot dead by police in a Walmart parking lot, handcuffed and in possession of a gun, but his family still has a host of unanswered questions. McCree, 28, had raced out of the Walmart in Chester, South Carolina, a small town an hour north of Columbia, after he was placed in handcuffs for allegedly stealing a $45 lock in November 2019, police said. But exactly what happened next remains unclear in part because the responding officers didn’t activate their body cameras until after McCree, a Black father and former high school football star, was gunned down in a hail of police bullets. “A lot of things do not add up,” his cousin, Tabatha Strother, told NBC News. “But we would have known a lot of this if the bodycam was on." more...

Trump and his supporters are the real traitors they attacked the capitol and incited and insurrection.

Tom Porter

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney was loudly booed when he took to the stage at a state Republican Party conference Saturday, according to a video published by the Salt Lake Tribune. In the footage, the delegates start to boo when Romney takes to the stage and the jeering grows louder as he tries to speak. Romney is one of the most prominent critics of former President Donald Trump. He was the only Republican who voted to convict Trump in the former president's first impeachment trial, and one of 9 Republicans who voted to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial. According to the Tribune, delegates shouted insults at Romney, accusing him of being a "traitor" and a "communist." more...

By Celine Castronuovo

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) on Friday signed into law a new bill condemned by housing advocates and city officials that would allow landlords to turn away tenants who receive Section 8 vouchers to help them pay rent. The bill, which passed in both chambers of the Republican-controlled Iowa General Assembly in March, prohibits counties from adopting laws that would prohibit a landlord “from refusing to lease or rent out a dwelling unit to a person because of the person’s use of a federal housing voucher issued by the United States department of housing and urban development.” The measure, which goes into effect Jan. 1, 2023, will override laws preventing the practice currently in place in three Iowa cities: Des Moines, Iowa City and Marion. more...

Lin Wood’s smash-mouth bid to become South Carolina party chair is rattling one of the Republican Party’s most important states.
By MARC CAPUTO

Lin Wood played a starring role in Georgia’s GOP civil war after the 2020 elections. Now the pro-Trump lawyer is taking his roadshow to South Carolina, where he’s campaigning as a “chaos” candidate to lead the state Republican Party. Wood, who transformed from a top Atlanta trial lawyer to a leading election conspiracy theorist in November, moved to South Carolina in February. Then the firebrand lawyer shocked the political establishment in one of the GOP’s most important state parties by mounting an unexpectedly strong challenge to the incumbent chairman, Drew McKissick. more...

Tucker Carlson is the dumbest person on earth or he wants you and children your to die from the corona virus.

"As for forcing children to wear masks outside, that should be illegal," Carlson declared
By Zachary Petrizzo

Fox News host Tucker Carlson dramatically escalated his incendiary anti-mask message with a Monday night diatribe directing his audience to call the police on people using the proper personal protective equipment while the nation still grapples with a pandemic. "Call the police immediately," Carlson instructed his Fox News audience if they see a child wearing a mask outside. "As for forcing children to wear masks outside, that should be illegal. Your response when you see children wearing masks as they play should be no different from your response to seeing someone beat a kid in Walmart. Call the police immediately, contact child protective services. Keep calling until someone arrives," Carlson declared. "What you're looking at is abuse, it's child abuse, and you are morally obligated to attempt to prevent it." "If it's your own children being abused, then act accordingly," Carlson continued on his anti-mask tirade. more...

The alleged incident occurred while Rep. Mark Samsel was substitute teaching at a public school in his hometown of Wellsville.
JOHN HANNA and ANDY TSUBASA FIELD

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas House member was arrested for possible misdemeanor battery in what authorities said Friday was an incident involving a student while he was substitute teaching at a public school in his hometown. Republican Rep. Mark Samsel was booked Thursday into the local county jail and released on a $1,000 bond. His arrest came after a student reported an incident Wednesday at school in his hometown of Wellsville, a town of about 1,700 people some 55 miles (89 kilometers) southwest of Kansas City. Samsel, 36, has yet to be formally charged with a crime but has a first appearance scheduled in district court for May 19 in Franklin County, said County Attorney Brandon Jones. Kansas law says battery is either causing bodily harm to another person or physical contact with someone else “done in a rude, insulting or angry manner,” and is punished by up to six months in jail. more...

By Fredreka Schouten, CNN

(CNN) Voting rights activists are sounding alarms about Republican efforts in key states to empower partisan poll watchers and expand voter challenges -- arguing it could lead to voter intimidation that recalls dark chapters in US history. Bills in several states would grant new authority to poll watchers -- who work on behalf of candidates and political parties -- to observe voters and election workers. Critics say it could lead to conflict and chaos at polling places and an improper targeting of voters of color. In Texas, a measure under consideration by the Republican-controlled legislature would grant partisan poll watchers the right to videotape voters as they receive assistance casting their ballots. more...

President Biden has promised to address inequities in health care, criminal justice, housing, voting, pay and more.
Deborah Barfield Berry and Romina Ruiz-Goiriena, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON _ Joe Biden stood in the White House and told Americans racism is exhausting, wearing on people of color and leaving many living in fear. He described the trauma many of the nation’s Black and brown people experience. They worry, he said, that encounters with the police could turn deadly, that their children aren’t safe going to the grocery store, driving down the street, playing in the park or even sleeping at home. more...

By Tal Axelrod

The Taliban warned of future attacks on U.S. troops after a withdrawal deadline that was negotiated under the Trump administration passed Saturday. “As withdrawal of foreign forces from #Afghanistan by agreed upon May 1st deadline has passed, this violation in principle has opened the way for [Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan] Mujahidin to take every counteraction it deems appropriate against the occupying forces,” tweeted Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid. more...

Dirk VanderHart, Conrad Wilson

Oregon state Rep. Mike Nearman, the Polk County Republican who allowed far-right demonstrators to breach the state Capitol in December, now faces criminal charges. According to court records, Nearman has been charged with first-degree official misconduct, a class A misdemeanor, and second degree criminal trespass, a class C misdemeanor. more...

By Andrew Julian

In a stunner at Churchill Downs, Medina Spirit (12/1) is the winner at the 147th Kentucky Derby. What's not s stunner at the 2021 Run for the Roses is that Bob Baffert is back in the winner's circle. Its the seventh time the Hall of Fame trainer has won the Kentucky Derby, which is all alone as the most all-time. more...


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