Patterico's Pontifications


AOC : Pelosi Explicitly Singled Out Newly Elected Women of Color

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:54 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Earlier this week, I posted about the claws coming out in the not-so-private rift between Nancy Pelosi and the progressive wing of the Party – specifically ‘the Squad’. Today, Pelosi took off the gloves in an effort get her caucus back in line:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi admonished Democrats for personally attacking one another, warning in a closed-door meeting Wednesday that the party’s fracturing was jeopardizing its majority.

Without naming names, her target was clear: the four liberal freshman known as “the Squad.”

“You got a complaint? You come and talk to me about it. But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just okay,” Pelosi (D-Calif.) told Democrats.

But “the Squad” — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) — is convinced it is Pelosi who is being the bully.

The four are struggling with the speaker’s moves to isolate them in recent weeks, according to interviews with the lawmakers, congressional aides and allies. Pelosi has made at least half-dozen remarks dismissing the group or their far-left proposals on the environment and health care. More recently she scorned their lonely opposition to the party’s emergency border bill last month.

And she defended those comments Wednesday, saying, “I have no regrets about anything. Regrets is not what I do,” doubling down on her claim that the group has little power in the House.

According to the report, the newbies aren’t sure about how to navigate the tough finesse that is the leadership of Nancy Pelosi. But one member of the Squad pushed back publicly, using the traditional go-to move of Democrats:

“When these comments first started, I kind of thought that she was keeping the progressive flank at more of an arm’s distance in order to protect more moderate members, which I understood,” Ocasio-Cortez told The Washington Post. “But the persistent singling out . . . it got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful . . . the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”

The four women are trying to figure out how to respond, texting one another and weighing whether to confront Pelosi to ask her to stop. But for now, they are focused on their congressional duties, even as they defend their votes in the House that have drawn Pelosi’s ire.

“Thank God my mother gave me broad shoulders and a strong back. I can handle it. I’m not worried about me,” said Pressley, who called Pelosi’s comments “demoralizing.”

It’s incredible to think that, in the lead-up to the next Democratic debate and a major election in the offing, the Democrats are in such disarray that one of their members has suggested that Pelosi behaved like, well, like a….racist. This is likely unfamiliar terrain for Pelosi to navigate too, given that she has been accused by a newly elected progressive with 4.7 million Twitter followers, and whose every word makes the news. The public spectacle of the old power trying to hold the line while the young, new power struggles for its turn couldn’t have come at a more inopportune time for Democrats. One thing is for sure: The new progressive wing of the Party needs to learn that “there’s a big difference between being an advocate and being a legislator.”


Bill Clinton and Donald Trump Comment About Jeffrey Epstein

Filed under: General — Dana @ 12:09 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Since the indictment against Jeffrey Epstein was unsealed on Monday, there appears to be a disturbing concern on both sides of the political aisle that the other side is not wholly committed to the belief that everyone found to have been involved in the alleged sex trafficking crimes of Jeffrey Epstein should be held accountable. No exceptions. It’s indecent that partisan politics and the sick reverence of politicians could trump the rape and trafficking of children. And yet there are partisans who have their finger-pointing “whataboutisms” ready, just in case their guy is implicated.

With that, since the indictment was made public, the two most focused upon individuals connected to Epstein, once upon a time, are former President Bill Clinton and current President Donald Trump. In the past few days both men have commented on Epstein.

In 2002, Clinton said this about Epstein:

“Jeffrey is both a highly successful financier and a committed philanthropist with a keen sense of global markets and an in-depth knowledge of twenty-first-century science,” Clinton says through a spokesman. “I especially appreciated his insights and generosity during the recent trip to Africa to work on democratization, empowering the poor, citizen service, and combating HIV/AIDS.”

In what seemed to be a puzzling preemptive strike, Clinton’s press secretary released a statement on the former president’s behalf just hours after the indictment was unsealed. Clinton firmly denied knowing anything about Epstein’s “terrible crimes”:

President Clinton knows nothing about the terrible crimes Jeffrey Epstein pleaded guilty to in Florida some years ago, or those with which he has recently been charged in New York. In 2002 and 2003, President Clinton took a total of four trips on Jeffrey Epstein’s airplane: one to Europe, one to Asia, and two to Africa, which included stops in connection with the Clinton Foundation. Staff, supporters of the foundation, and his Secret Service detail traveled on every leg of every trip. He had one meeting with Epstein in his Harlem office in 2002, and around the same time made one brief visit to Epstein’s New York apartment with a staff member and his security detail. He’s not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade, and has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida.

In 2002, Trump said this about Epstein:

“I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump booms from a speakerphone. “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

On Monday, commenting on the latest developments concerning Epstein, President Trump said:

“I know him, just like everybody in Palm Beach knew him,” Trump said. “People in Palm Beach knew him. He was a fixture in Palm Beach.”

“I had a falling out with him a long time ago,” Trump continued. “I don’t think I’ve spoken to him in 15 years. I was not a fan. I was not a fan of his. That I can tell you. I was not a fan.”

I’ll also include Trump’s comments about about Bill Clinton (and Jeffrey Epstein): “Nice guy — uh, got a lot of problems coming up, in my opinion, with the famous island, with Jeffrey Epstein,” Trump told Fox News’ Sean Hannity in 2015, referring to Clinton’s connections with Epstein. “A lot of problems.”

Both Clinton and Trump are known liars who lack a functioning moral compass. And they’ve both demonstrated this, ad nauseam, with regard to the opposite sex. I have absolutely no idea if they were involved with the alleged behavior of Epstein, or how much they knew about what he was up to, if anything. At this point in time, nothing would surprise me.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


4th Circuit Dismisses Emoluments Lawsuit against Trump

Filed under: Law — DRJ @ 8:02 am

[Headlines from DRJ]

The HillAppeals court dismisses Emoluments Clause lawsuit in win for Trump:

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit filed by Maryland and D.C. alleging that President Trump is violating the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, finding that they did not have the standing to sue the president.

A report on oral argument in the case last March indicated a win for Trump:

A federal appeals court panel was indisputably hostile Tuesday to a lawsuit accusing President Donald Trump of violating the Constitution by profiting from his business dealings with foreign countries seeking to curry favor with his administration.

The uphill battle the suit faces was evident before the arguments even began Tuesday morning when it was revealed that all three 4th Circuit Court of Appeals judges assigned to the case are GOP appointees, including two of the court’s most conservative jurists.

One of those judges suggested that the suit could be a precursor to attempting to drive the president from office through impeachment. And two of the judges came close to accusing the Maryland-based district court judge handling the suit, Clinton-appointee Peter Messitte, of impropriety for trying to engineer the challenge rather than responding to legal issues presented to him by the officials who brought the suit: the attorneys general of Maryland and Washington, D.C.

A NY federal court dismissed another emoluments lawsuit (there are 3 cases), also based on standing. That case is on appeal in the 2nd Circuit. It is curious the courts are using standing but the Emoluments Clause is rarely tested, so it may be difficult to apply.


UK Diplomat Resigns

Filed under: International,Politics — DRJ @ 6:16 am

[Headlines from DRJ]

The GuardianKim Darroch quits as UK ambassador to US ‘after Johnson remarks:

Sir Kim Darroch, the UK ambassador to Washington who has been at the centre of a diplomatic row over leaked cables criticising Donald Trump, has resigned.

The Guardian understands he concluded that his position was untenable after watching Tuesday’s Conservative leadership debate, in which the frontrunner, Boris Johnson, stopped short of backing him.

In a letter to Simon McDonald, the most senior official at the Foreign Office, Darroch said the row, in which Trump called the ambassador “a pompous fool” and “very stupid”, meant he could not continue.

Johnson, the apparent next PM, is getting pressure for not supporting the Ambassador:

Darroch’s decision will put pressure on Johnson, who was criticised by some Conservatives after Tuesday night’s debate for refusing to give Darroch his support, even as his rival, Jeremy Hunt, said he would expect the ambassador to stay in post until his planned retirement.

When pressed on the point, Johnson gave only mild criticism of Trump and said a good relationship with the US was “of fantastic importance”.

Sir Alan Duncan, a Foreign Office minister, said Johnson had thrown Darroch “under the bus to serve his own personal interests ” and accused him of “contemptible negligence”.

Meanwhile, at the Daily Mail:

The Purell president: Germaphobe Trump tells visitors to wash their hands in bathroom near Oval Office and an aide follows him with bottle of hand sanitizer – but staff escape from him by faking a cough.

Diplomacy isn’t just for Ambassadors. Trump’s staff uses it, too.


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