Patterico's Pontifications

1/1/2021

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 10:40 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Here are a few news items to get you started. Please feel free to share anything that interests you. Make sure to include links.

First news item

The man has a plan because he actually gives a damn:

U.S. Senator Mitt Romney on Friday urged the U.S. government to immediately enlist veterinarians, combat medics and others in an all-out national campaign to administer coronavirus vaccinations and slow a surging rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths…The Utah Republican…called for greater action as the Trump administration fell far short of its goal of vaccinating 20 million Americans with a first of two required doses by the end of 2020…As of Friday…an estimated 2.8 million vaccine doses have actually been given, mostly to front-line healthcare workers as well as staff and residents of nursing facilities.

“That comprehensive vaccination plans have not been developed at the federal level and sent to the states as models is as incomprehensible as it is inexcusable,” Romney said in a statement…

Romney called for deploying veterinarians, emergency medical workers and medical students to help deliver vaccinations and set up inoculation clinics at sites such as school buildings that are largely empty because of the pandemic.

He also recommended establishing a clear order for Americans nationwide to receive their shots according to priority groups and birthdays, while welcoming other ideas from medical professionals. Prioritizing vaccine recipients is currently being handled state by state.

Second news item

Yes, please:

William Cohen, a former Republican senator from Maine…suggested the formation of a new political party.

Cohen called [Josh] Hawley’s actions “shameful” but warned that Republicans are just following President Trump’s lead, calling him the party’s “ringmaster.”

“We have to remember that the current occupant of the White House is a ringmaster and what he expects to do is snap his whip and all the elephants hop up on chairs,” Cohen said. “What they have to understand is he is going to continue to snap the whip whether he’s in office or out of office. And every time they’re going to have to jump up and sit on that stool to satisfy him and his supporters.

For Trump it is pathological, for those who are jumping up to support him, it’s diabolical and I don’t think it’s diabolically clever. I think they will find they will be hostage for the rest of their time in the Senate and going forward if they are only there to appease the Trumpsters.

Maybe it’s time for a new party. One that abides by the rule of law. But also faithful to the people of this country, who vote to elect them.”

Third news item

Single-handedly taking down the Republican party:

President Trump is trying to convince his followers that the Senate special election in Georgia is “both illegal and invalid” because of a bizarre election conspiracy theory, a move that could spell trouble for the two Republicans hoping to win re-election on Jan. 5. In a series of tweets late Friday, Trump falsely claimed that state legislatures were “not in any way responsible for the massive changes made to the voting process” and that the special elections for Georgia’s two Senate seats are therefore invalid.

Fourth news item

Another one bites the dust:

A federal judge in Texas threw out a Hail Mary lawsuit filed against Vice President Mike Pence by a Republican congressman who argued the vice president has the authority to unilaterally reverse Donald Trump’s election loss during a joint session of Congress Wednesday. U.S. District Judge Jeremy Kernodle on Friday dismissed the suit by Representative Louie Gohmert, ruling the Texas congressman hadn’t suffered a specific injury caused by any action of Pence and therefore didn’t have legal standing to sue. The judge didn’t rule on the merits of Gohmert’s argument, which would have radically reshaped a vice president’s role.

“Congressman Gohmert’s alleged injury requires a series of hypothetical — but by no means certain — events,” said Kernodle, a Trump appointee. “Plaintiffs presuppose what the Vice President will do on January 6” and “which electoral votes the Vice President will count or reject from contested states.”

Gohmert’s not done with this.

Fifth news item

The ugly, unvarnished truth:

[T]he United States is in a permanent state of emergency and had been for years before the coronavirus arrived on our shores. Congress has long abandoned the “regular order” of constitutional lawmaking, with Washington lurching from crisis to crisis on the support of a series of continuing resolutions, last-minute omnibus-spending slop buckets, and other ad hoc measures. We have seen a steady series of emergency economic-stimulus and -stabilization packages passed in the past 20 years — the post-9/11 airline bailout and New York–oriented stimulus measures, the 2008 Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (TARP), the subsequent American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and the unprecedented $2 trillion CARES Act, as well as a sustained Federal Reserve effort to keep interest rates in the neighborhood of 0.00 percent.

Having conducted itself as though in a state of emergency when it wasn’t, the U.S. government has shown itself unable to treat a genuine emergency as such. Instead, we have been carried forward on the shoulders of Amazon, FedEx, and UPS, as well as churches and community groups (the actual sources of resiliency in our country), and may yet be carried to safety by the hated pharmaceutical companies, with critical support from university-based researchers.

Sixth news item

Name and shame them.:

Trump-supporting Sen. Josh Hawley will set off hours of debate that won’t change the election results.

Despite there being virtually no chance of overturning the 2020 presidential election, at least 140 House Republicans plan to vote against the certification of President-elect Joe Biden…The 140 House Republicans need the support of one senator in order to force two hours of debate in Congress and an official individual vote count. The process will not change the election results, but it will force each member of Congress to go on record.

Seventh news item

Goals:

Let me suggest two direct happiness resolutions for 2021: forgiveness and gratitude.

In this difficult period in our history, from the pandemic to the culture of political contempt, there is a lot of potential for bitterness in our lives. Open up social media and you will see nonstop Olympics-level grudge matches. Even worse, estrangement between family members is strikingly common; one study published in 2015—even before the polarizing political period following the 2016 U.S. presidential election—found that about 44 percent of people were estranged from at least one relative, nearly 17 percent from someone in their immediate family.

One of the most frequent questions I get from readers is about how to deal with family conflict and estrangement. My answer is a New Year’s resolution to forgive. In experiments on forgiveness interventions—helping people forgive those who have harmed them—scholars have found clear evidence that forgiveness has direct happiness benefits. Forgiveness increases hope and self-esteem, while lowering anxiety and depression. This astounded me personally, but my wife found it blindingly obvious. “To refuse to forgive is to cling to something unpleasant,” she reminded me. “It is like hugging garbage.” I had to concede that it’s nice to let go of garbage.

Easy to say, hard to do, of course.

Have a good weekend.

–Dana

126 Responses to “Weekend Open Thread”

  1. Putting this up now so I can sleep in! Priorities 2021.

    Dana (cc9481)

  2. This is the first time I’ve read about the refusal to forgive being equated to hugging garbage. But it’s true. You are right that forgiveness is often easier said than done for many people, especially when their offense against you is a big one. In some cases, it requires a lot of humble pie and a major swallowing of pride. But I do believe that forgiveness(which doesn’t necessarily mean a restoration of trust)does as much for the forgiver as it does the forgiven. Being able to forgive is like having a heavy load of bricks lifted from your shoulders, which I can attest to from personal experience. I do need to do a better job forgiving others and showing more gratitude, so those are solid goals to have for this new year.

    HCI (92ea66)

  3. Excellent, Dana.
    It’s too bad Romney was such a poor campaigner because he would’ve been an excellent president in the years 2012-2020. The man who had binders full of women in 2012 would also have had binders full of vaccine distribution plans in 2020.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  4. I live a stone’s throw from Gohmert’s district. Anywhere else, he would be an embarrassment. I am ashamed that my neighbors support this asshat.

    Glenn (a56320)

  5. Excellent, Dana.
    It’s too bad Romney was such a poor campaigner because he would’ve been an excellent president in the years 2012-2020. The man who had binders full of women in 2012 would also have had binders full of vaccine distribution plans in 2020.

    Paul Montagu (77c694) — 1/1/2021 @ 11:52 pm

    That’s what I’ve been thinking all along. It seemed like the Romney campaign was too often always playing defense against the Obama folks in 2012. If only his campaigning skills were as sharp as his moral character and governing prowess. If Mitt turned it up a notch or two back in 2012, then maybe MAGAworld could’ve been relegated to being a far fetched fantasy……sigh.

    HCI (92ea66)

  6. I live a stone’s throw from Gohmert’s district. Anywhere else, he would be an embarrassment. I am ashamed that my neighbors support this asshat.

    Glenn (a56320) — 1/2/2021 @ 12:04 am

    Agreed. TX-01 is about as Trumpy of a district as they get. Trump got 72% of the vote twice. It seems like unlike other formerly ruby red districts in the TX suburbs that have gone purple due to Trump, TX-01 has pretty much stayed where it is. Unless enough voters there have a major change of heart, they’ll reward Gohmert for making a complete ass of himself.

    HCI (92ea66)

  7. I see. If Purdue and Loeffler win, after Trump has lost, can he claim that the Georgia elections are rigged?

    Hmm. Trump must make sure they do not win… or claim they won the first time… or something?? Be patient with me. I am trying to understand this three-dimensional chess stuff.

    noel (9fead1)

  8. Just 18 days left in the Biff Tannen Administration.

    noel (9fead1)

  9. I sure did complain a lot about Romney, but it is clear to me that Tea party anger with his nomination is one of the reasons the GOP lost its way. My bad, guys.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  10. Two people familiar with the matter say that in recent days, Trump has told advisers and close associates that he wants to keep fighting in court past Jan. 6 if members of Congress, as expected, end up certifying the electoral college results.

    “The way he sees it is: Why should I ever let this go?… How would that benefit me?” said one of the sources, who’s spoken to Trump at length about the post-election activities to nullify his Democratic opponent’s decisive victory.

    happy to destroy because it doesn’t help him personally if he stops. I interpret this as signaling he’ll stop fighting the election if he’s given something nice. Perhaps a deal on his New York legal problems. I also think Putin wants him to destabilize the USA as much as possible.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  11. Yeah, I can’t imagine anyone better suited to the job to direct the Vaccine operations. As Paul said above, he would have binders full of qualified individuals to figure it out. I can’t emphasize this enough, Trump brings absolutely no social capital to the job of the presidency. His idea of hiring has been watching Fox News and seeing looking for people who kiss his ass. It’s no surprise that late into the presidency as qualified people have left the administration, there is nobody left to do important jobs.

    tla (34ebeb)

  12. Is remind me of difference between peaceful transfer of power in America and peaceful transfer of power in Latvia, comrades.

    In America, outgoing President show incoming President the ropes. In Latvia, incoming Politburo show outgoing Politburo the rope. Is maybe for outgoing Comrade President Trump is need Latvian process.

    nk (1d9030)

  13. I’d rather Trump leave the GOP and take his sniffers with him, but I’ll settle for Cohen’s idea but only if there’s a critical mass of conservatives willing to jump on board. I’m trying out some names for size, and I’m cottoning to the Freedom & Justice Party.
    This is no surprise, that Trump will fight the election after January 6th. He’s bringing in way too much cash from his base of fools to resist, and don’t tell me he’s not going to embezzle it for personal purposes. It was always about Trump first.

    Paul Montagu (16a969)

  14. https://freebeacon.com/men-of-the-year/eric-swalwell/

    The man so great, that the leftist media won’t mention his name.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  15. https://freebeacon.com/2020-election/goodman-warnock-cant-dismiss-traumatizing-and-disturbing-camp-abuse-story/

    Yet another story the Times, the WaPost, etc are smothering with a pillow.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  16. OK, should I believe our “man with a plan” (first news item) or the “ugly, unvarnished truth” (fifth news item)? They can’t both be right.

    We should have the feds come up with a comprehensive vaccination plan as a model, but the ugly truth is the feds haven’t been able to treat a genuine emergency as such in 20 years.

    The “ugly, unvarnished truth” sounds right to me — meaning Romney is full of it, and full of himself as usual, which also sounds right.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  17. Washington Examiner
    @dcexaminer

    Portland Mayor @tedwheeler: My good faith efforts at de-escalation have been met with ongoing violence and even scorn from radical antifa and anarchists.

    It’s time to push back harder against those who are set on destroying our community.”

    https://twitter.com/dcexaminer/status/1345355232600088576?s=20

    __ _

    Eyewitness News
    @ABC7NY

    Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco home vandalized overnight on New Year’s Day
    http://7ny.tv/2X2j1G2
    _

    ‘CANCEL RENT’
    ‘A’NTIFA
    ‘WE WANT EVERYTHING’

    [even the ice cream?]
    __

    Congrats everyone who voted for Democrats

    _

    harkin (8fadc8)

  18. We have not had leadership. Just an orange pig wallowing in the public trough.

    nk (1d9030)

  19. If only [Romney’s] campaigning skills were as sharp as his moral character and governing prowess.

    If only a sizable chunk of GOP voters hadn’t taken the position that moral character and governing prowess are demerits in a president and detrimental to American Greatness.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  20. OK, should I believe our “man with a plan” (first news item) or the “ugly, unvarnished truth” (fifth news item)? They can’t both be right.

    There is no contradiction between one senator having a plan to accomplish a particular goal, and the entire federal government working in a haphazard way.

    Those two items in juxtaposition suggest that the government needs more people who think like Romney.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  21. The “ugly, unvarnished truth” sounds right to me — meaning Romney is full of it, and full of himself as usual, which also sounds right.

    Does Romney control the entire federal government?

    If Romney is “full of himself,” what is Donald J. Trump? Romney is thinking about how to get more people vaccinated faster. Trump is thinking about how to overturn an election and punish people who won’t help him do it. He actually wants the GOP to lose control of the Senate because that’s better for his ego.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  22. I wonder if it was really Antifa vandalising Pelosi’s home. Sometimes folks writing Antifa on the wall are actually Proud boys types. Just seems like this week, the radical stuff is coming from Q anon and Trump fans. Are radical lefties really focused on Pelosi being too moderate right now? Isn’t their big issue the $2k payout and universal income?

    Congrats everyone who voted for Democrats

    _

    harkin (8fadc8) — 1/2/2021 @ 8:47 am

    Harkin, the anger in this country comes after Trump’s efforts to make everyone angry. Indeed, congratulations are in order to the nation for rejecting Trump’s troll administration. The idea that voting for Biden somehow caused Portland’s problems is very hard for me to see. Trump repeatedly tried to make drama there, to create this narrative thaat it was either a vote for him, for law and order, out of fear, or you’d get more Portlands. I can understand rejecting the left because of those radicals, but that was before.

    Today, Trump and the GOP are actively lying about election fraud, destabilizing our nation, with Trump’s lawyer calling for the Vice President to be executed by firing squad, a Texas Rep calling for violence in the streets, and etc etc etc.

    It’s time for you to really think about your great argument, that extreme tactics should be rejected, but in light of new information. Before too long, Trump’s fans will wish they could say they never supported this stuff. It is going to get worse, but you all know that and can stop it. Every Trump fan who starts saying enough is enough, and stops using the conduct of anonymous vandals to justify the acts of actual leaders, makes a real difference in our country. Ultimately, I do not think nevertrumpers like me can stop the violence and damage to our democracy. Only Trump’s fans, the ones who are smart and know better, can speak out.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  23. Those two items in juxtaposition suggest that the government needs more people who think like Romney.

    That’s certainly a position. Having faith that the feds just need more competence to do good, and create a model for the states, just isn’t a particularly conservative one.

    But, I guess that’s what happens when the conservative standard bearer gave us Romneycare, the 47%, and now chases likes from the left wing media.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  24. Pro-Trump lawyer Lin Wood insists he is not insane after tweeting that Mike Pence should face execution by firing squad

    “That’s what they called me at the Masters’ and Joshson’s clinic. ‘Mad’! Because I had visions of explorations in sexual areas undreamed of by lesser human beings! It was I who first discovered how to make a man impotent by hiding his hat. I was the first one to explain the connection between excessive masturbation and entering politics. It was I who first said that clitoral orgasm should not be only for women. They laughed at me, ridiculed me, said I was mad! Ha ha! But I show them! Ha ha! They threw me out of Master’s and Johnson’s. No severance pay. And I had it coming! But I showed them!”
    —Dr. Bernardo, Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex But Were Afraid To Ask

    nk (1d9030)

  25. That’s certainly a position. Having faith that the feds just need more competence to do good, and create a model for the states, just isn’t a particularly conservative one.

    A lack of faith in big government is not a call for low standards for those we trust. Even conservatives recognize the government is needed for some of the most critical tasks, requiring great trust and skill.

    Trump has utterly screwed up the vaccine roll out, but he had no plan and his supporters say it is liberal to ask for the government to do a good job at something. American lives are at stake, indeed many have been lost by this terrible performance from an administration that apparently wants to damage America in retribution for losing an election.

    Do you think any Biden voters are regreting it? Harkin keeps sarcastically congratulating us like December wasn’t the most validating month imaginable for us. Failure, betrayal, death. That’s not particularly conservative either.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  26. Dustin,

    are you going to blame the Social Justice lunatics, the race baiters, the origin of America is slavery and not freedom, the white man is the devil and the root of all evil on Trump too?

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  27. Having faith that the feds just need more competence to do good, and create a model for the states, just isn’t a particularly conservative one.

    Is it properly conservative to believe that the federal government should be filled with people who are incompetent? If the choice is between competence and incompetence, a Real Conservative chooses the latter?

    Trump wants credit for other people’s work in developing vaccines, but he couldn’t be bothered to think about how they might be distributed efficiently, because he doesn’t care.

    Trump’s attitude is “I alone can fix it,” but he doesn’t really care if things are fixed, and he doesn’t have the mental discipline to think anything through.
    He spoke in favor of government-controlled health care when he thought it advantageous to do so. He promised that we would soon have a better national plan that would “take care of everyone” at lower cost, but he really didn’t care about it.

    The plan that Romney signed into law in Massachusetts was based on ideas earlier floated at radical-left think tanks like the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. Some of the Republicans who once defended Romney’s role in the Massachusetts plan later decided that it proved he’s basically the devil. But in Trump-world, Romney’s real sin is not Romneycare. It’s the fact that he doesn’t bow down before Trump.

    Romney has actually thought about how to distribute vaccines to the population, but that makes Trump look bad, which in turn it makes Trumpers angry, so they come out with their cheapest of cheap shots: the claim that Romney’s only care is “to get likes from the left-wing media.” Which is deeply ironic, since their idol cares a lot more about getting adoration from his cult-followers than about doing anything to protect their lives and health.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  28. McConnell’s KY house vandalized w/graffiti: ‘Where’s My Money?’; Pelosi’s shack vandalized as well; 11 GOP senators/senators-elect to challenge electoral college certification; ‘there’s a scout troop short a child, Khrushchev’s due at Idlewild… Car 54 where are you?!’

    … and Putin laughed, while Xi just smiled.

    Hello, 2021.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  29. Dustin,

    are you going to blame the Social Justice lunatics, the race baiters, the origin of America is slavery and not freedom, the white man is the devil and the root of all evil on Trump too?

    NJRob (eb56c3) — 1/2/2021 @ 9:58 am

    Yes, I do. Do you not associate Trump’s race baiting with race baiting for some reason?

    I’ve talked to enough liberatians toting ARs and communists angry I assumed they were a “sir” to recognize a lot of them are the same idiots, most of them are mentally ill, and they get a lot of their information from anonymous internet sources that half the time wind up being hoaxes from the opposite side. This is a campaign against our country from China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran, simply to ruin the stability of our nation, the great example of democracy. Trump is a willing accessory.

    December saw Trump give up on the lives of thousands of Americans. He simply had no plan to roll out this vaccine. Would you be capable of that level of nihilism? I know you wouldn’t.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  30. McConnell’s KY house vandalized w/graffiti: ‘Where’s My Money?’; Pelosi’s shack vandalized as well;

    Doesn’t that seem coordinated? What group of folks is mad at both Pelosi and McConnell and hoping for a “wild” week? The same folks who find this stuff useful also find it to be a rebuke of voting against Trump. It’s not weird how it all adds up if you use your noggin.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  31. Fear may be the mind-killer, but resentment isn’t far behind. We all engage in it to some degree, but for me letting go of the anger makes it easier to enjoy life.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  32. It’s too bad Romney was such a poor campaigner

    He had some bad luck, too. The blindside from the moderator in the second debate cost him dearly, as did the blackout of the campaign in the final week due to the storm that hit New Jersey (and Chris Christie didn’t help).

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  33. BTW, some of Obama’s nimbleness in 2012 led me to think he had inside knowledge of the Romney campaign.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  34. https://thehill.com/homenews/news/532362-proud-boys-to-attend-jan-6-dc-rallies-incognito

    The Proud Boys admit they are intentionally disguising themselves as Antifa right now.

    Someone coordianted the attacks on McConnell and Pelosi’s house.

    Trump has attacked them both last week, and has called for Proud Boys to stand by, and called for his supporters to come protest Jan 6 where things will get “wild.”

    And this example of anonymous vandalism was used to condemn Biden voters? And I’m asked gosh why do I associate all this with Trump?

    That same link talks about smuggling weapons to an armed emcampment on the mall. I’m sure Trump wants the left and nevertrumpers to get extremely upset and retaliate, but the real play is to totally ignore DC on Jan 6. No one should go but Trump’s fanatics. The press should cover it from a distance. These proud boys goons will probably dress as leftists and hurt people, to justify what they really want to do.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  35. “conservative standard bearer gave us Romneycare”

    So are you for federalism or not? And do you think Romney was somehow the King of Massachusetts…with the state legislature playing no role in moving forward a health care plan that represented the priorities of the majority in Massachusetts? Yes, the GOP did marvelous at tearing down plans, but push come to shove, shot blanks when it was their turn. Four years and nothing substantive from Trump….you really are shrinking before our eyes.

    “The “ugly, unvarnished truth” sounds right to me — meaning Romney is full of it”

    So someone putting forth a rational, thoughtful policy has to be “full of it” because….I assume….the GOP now only stands for clown-car politics. If you are not doing clown-car antics, you are no longer conservative. But Trump will have no lasting negative effect on the GOP…..SMH

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  36. Unfortunately, no attention is being paid to the long-term damage being done by Trumpers in the Republican Party. This isn’t a game. Americans are watching, and they are seeing the party break wide open. But it’s not for the sake of the country, or for a party cleansing to become stronger and more principled. Nope, not that. Most disgustingly, it’s only happening for the sake of one maniacal egomaniac who refuses to accept an election loss, and who has successfully conned elected officials hired to represent the people, not suck the toes of the President, into believing that he is the future of the GOP.

    Dana (cc9481)

  37. I’m trying out some names for size, and I’m cottoning to the Freedom & Justice Party

    1) It sounds a lot like the hard Left “Peace & Freedom Party” in CA.
    2) Why not resurrect the “Federalist Party” and base it on the principles of the Federalist Society.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  38. Is it properly conservative to believe that the federal government should be filled with people who are incompetent? If the choice is between competence and incompetence, a Real Conservative chooses the latter?

    As the news item states, “Prioritizing vaccine recipients is currently being handled state by state.” This is how it is, and how it always will be, and let’s just call it the real world USA. Blame or credit whatever governor you like. No wait, blame Trump.

    But Romney’s lobs from the gallery are genius. Getting veterinarians involved and “establishing a clear order for Americans nationwide to receive their shots” is sure to fly when dealing with fiefdoms like California and New York. They’ll just take advice like that at the drop of a hat. What a fantasy world Romney and his superfans inhabit.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  39. Cruz leads group of senators seeking to challenge Electoral College count

    Nearly a quarter of Senate Republicans are officially preparing to challenge President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College win on Jan. 6, a stunning development that demonstrates just how far some in the GOP will go to align themselves with President Donald Trump’s flailing claims that the election was stolen from him.
    …….
    In a statement on Saturday afternoon, 11 current and incoming GOP lawmakers said they intended to reject the electors from states where they claimed “unprecedented allegations of voter fraud, violations and lax enforcement of election law” arose until a 10-day audit of the election results in each state has been completed.
    …….

    The group of Republicans insisted their effort wasn’t an attempt to thwart Biden or overturn the election, but rather aimed to protect “election integrity.” Likewise, Hawley said he was not trying to overturn the election.
    …….
    The faction of GOP lawmakers includes Sens. Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Mike Braun (Ind.), Cruz (Texas), Steve Daines (Mont.), Ron Johnson (Wis.), John Kennedy (La.) and James Lankford (Okla.), as well as Sen.-elects Bill Hagerty (Tenn.), Cynthia Lummis (Wyo.), Roger Marshall (Kan.) and Tommy Tuberville (Ala.).

    Lankford, Johnson and Kennedy are all up for reelection in 2022, and the vote will effectively become a wedge issue within the Republican Party. Republicans who vote against Trump and allow the certification of Biden’s election could find themselves with primary challenges. Trump has already endorsed a primary challenge to Senate Majority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.).
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  40. I’ve added to the post:

    Sixth news item

    Name and shame them.:

    Trump-supporting Sen. Josh Hawley will set off hours of debate that won’t change the election results.

    Despite there being virtually no chance of overturning the 2020 presidential election, at least 140 House Republicans plan to vote against the certification of President-elect Joe Biden…The 140 House Republicans need the support of one senator in order to force two hours of debate in Congress and an official individual vote count. The process will not change the election results, but it will force each member of Congress to go on record.

    I’ve also bumped up the added news item because I wanted to end on a positive note with the Goals news item (forgiveness and gratitude).

    Dana (cc9481)

  41. BnP,

    How can you argue against anyone else when your guy was so incompetent he couldn’t find his ass with either hand? The problem I have with Trump is not what he said he’d do, but that he proved incapable of doing it. All he accomplished were some TEMPORARY executive orders and a lot of promises at campaign rallies.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  42. Cruz is so pathetic. He was really close to calling Trump out on the RNC stage in 2016. I guess at that point he didn’t really care any more than he does today. What on the surface looks like a good man breaking, is really a man who never cared about anything but himself, calculating at every point.

    A coward dies a thousand deaths.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  43. UT austin is buying out yet another football coach, 15 million bucks, probably picking up the OC from Alabama so they can buy him out in a few years too.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  44. Where’s My Money?

    I got MY money on New Year’s Day. Don’t know what their problem is.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  45. Trump has utterly screwed up, but he had no plan and his supporters say it is liberal to ask for the government to do a good job at something.

    FIFY

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  46. I’m trying out some names for size, and I’m cottoning to the Freedom & Justice Party

    1) It sounds a lot like the hard Left “Peace & Freedom Party” in CA.
    2) Why not resurrect the “Federalist Party” and base it on the principles of the Federalist Society.

    1) I immediately thought Peace & Freedom Party too, so that’s a no for me.
    2) Anything with the word “Federalist” in it reminds me of The Federalist website. They pretty much own it now. Unfortunately, they are full-on Trump. So that’s a no-go for me as well.

    Put that thinking cap on!

    Dana (cc9481)

  47. UT austin is buying out yet another football coach, 15 million bucks

    Maybe this is OK in Texas, but for a public school to blow money like this (that’s at least 1000 in-state students’ tuition) is unconscionable.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  48. Anything with the word “Federalist” in it reminds me of The Federalist website

    The Federalist Society should sue for trademark infringement. It obviously causes confusion in the political marketplace.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  49. Rep. Gohmert’s response to losing the case was to say that the court is saying that there is no remedy (true) and that the court is also saying people have to take to the streets and “be as violetn as Antifa and BLM”.

    A sitting Congressman is now right on the edge of calling for an armed insurrection against the US government.

    I hope the Congress kicks him out.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  50. Senators woo oppose Hawley, Cruz, etc, ought to withdraw from the caucus and announce they will not support McConnell as Majority leader. Let them pick a new name. Sadly, all the good names are taken or adulterated.

    Maybe they could declare themselves Libertarian, then take that party over and replace the crazy people with center-libs.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  51. Gohmert, btw, wants to be Speaker.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  52. A sitting Congressman is now right on the edge of calling for an armed insurrection against the US government.

    I hope the Congress kicks him out.

    aphrael (4c4719) — 1/2/2021 @ 11:10 am

    Heh. This Congress?? I don’t think so. Haven’t they already demonstrated to us that they have no inclination to do what is right, ethical, and principled?

    Dana (cc9481)

  53. What a fantasy world Romney Trump and his superfans inhabit.

    Fixed it.

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  54. > Chris Christie didn’t help

    Chris Christie did his job as Governor of New Jersey and put the interests of his state (in getting good federal support for dealing with the hurricane) first, *as any sitting Governor should do*. This is no different than Newsom openly praising Trump’s handling of the pandemic, which we all knew was (a) a lie and (b) a necessary lie.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  55. @39 Liars. They are legislators. If they were actually concerned about better election integrity, they would pass a law. Which is their job.

    Nic (896fdf)

  56. Maybe this is OK in Texas, but for a public school to blow money like this (that’s at least 1000 in-state students’ tuition) is unconscionable.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 1/2/2021 @ 11:07 am

    It blows my mind. The arts library across the street from the stadium was close to losing a floor of space due to budget problems. I know athletics brings in a ton of money but that doesn’t mean they should just be ridiculous with it. I hope they hire Mack Brown just to make it a little more ridiculous.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  57. Blame or credit whatever governor you like. No wait, blame Trump.

    Do you think Trump should get the credit for the rapid development of vaccines? Trump does. He demands credit for anything that goes right, but if anything goes wrong, his position is “I take no responsibility at all.”

    That’s the credo of Trump defenders too: Always praise Trump. Never criticize him or hold him accountable for any lapse or failure or wrongdoing. Criticizing Dear Leader is the worst of sins in the Trumpist mind.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  58. How can you argue against anyone else when your guy was so incompetent he couldn’t find his ass with either hand?

    Because he’s a one term president as opposed to a zero term president?

    Give me an update on this stance of yours when there’s a 5-4 ruling and ACB casts the deciding vote.

    Romney (and his fans) seem to have settled in to enjoying lobbing rotten vegetables at whoever is in power, because it’s much more fun than doing what it takes to get elected nationally.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  59. @57-
    Don’t you remember the photos of Trump hunched over his lab table, surrounded by Bunsen burners, test tubes, centrifuges, and beakers?

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  60. What happens in 2024 if the democrats lost and replay the GOP’s moves?

    Imagine, Kamala vs. Cruz, and Cruz wins. Kamala announces she is simply not going to count the electors from red states because of reports that minorities didn’t vote in proportionate numbers. No more peaceful transition of powerm, basically one click more than where we are today.

    The GOP’s actions here are making our families less safe. Trump told the Proud Boys to stand by, and they know he means Jan 6. They are actually advertisement they will dress as Antifa so more folks copy that idea. They may have coordinated the attack on McConnell and Pelosi’s houses.

    Kevin says to let go of anger. I’m sure that is a sound strategy for deflating what Trump is trying to troll. Is it possible? Can the nation ignore Jan 6 violence in DC and just remove Trump on Jan 20, and then assess how to respond?

    Dustin (4237e0)

  61. The Normal and Ordinary Party.
    Motto: We Don’t Pander.

    nk (1d9030)

  62. What on the surface looks like a good man breaking, is really a man who never cared about anything but himself, calculating at every point.

    I defended Cruz when Trumpers trash-talked him while glorifying Trump, and I still think they were crazy to insist that Trump is much more honest and caring than Cruz. Now they’ve decided that Cruz isn’t so bad after all, since he’s defending Trump, which is what really matters to them. I’ve realized, too, that Cruz is a lot closer to a Trumpian figure than I recognized back then. I just don’t think that’s a good thing.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  63. I think BnP’s argument is hilarious. Serving one term means one thing: you had a chance and you failed. We do not know if Romney would have been successful. We only know that Trump was not successful.

    The bar that Bush and Obama and Clinton cleared was too high for Trump, who has never actually won the popular vote in any election, ever, for anything.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  64. There was no way Romney, the whitest of white candidates (and certainly one of the wealthiest ever) was going to beat the first African American President running for re-election. He was the Republican sacrificial lamb.

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  65. Dustin – honestly, though, we can say similar things about some of the measures Democrats have taken in response to Trump.

    One of my problems with Trump all along has been that he put us in a position where our choices were to let him damage the republic or to damage the republic ourselves in an attempt to stop him.

    His election guaranteed that the republic would suffer some damage no matter what, it was just a question of *which* damage.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  66. And Trump couldn’t win the popular vote against one of the worst Democratic candidates ever.

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  67. Rich Mitchell
    @CDNnow

    Democrats’ Proposed House Rules Eliminate Gendered Terms Like ‘Father’, ‘Daughter’, ‘Mother’ and ‘Son’:
    The Rules Package for the 117th Congress includes a proposal to replace gendered language in referring to a representative’s family members.
    _

    Nancy Pelosi
    @SpeakerPelosi

    Speaker of the House, focused on strengthening America’s middle class and creating jobs; mother, grandmother, dark chocolate connoisseur.
    San Franciscospeaker.gov
    __ _

    harkin (8fadc8)

  68. CDNNOW is a Russia-based company that develops a large network for data transfer in Russia and CIS. The best programmers from the entire country have managed to create a reliable traffic management architecture and a strong balancing system for you to enjoy fast and productive CDNNOW content delivery network. https://www.spacecdn.com/cdn-providers/cdnnow

    Go away, harkin! Just … go … away!

    nk (1d9030)

  69. Romney (and his fans) seem to have settled in to enjoying lobbing rotten vegetables at whoever is in power, because it’s much more fun than doing what it takes to get elected nationally.

    That’s a bizarre thing to say about someone who actually did the work of a governor before deciding to run for a national office. He was also widely praised for his competent management of the Salt Lake City Olympics. And BTW, I’m not a “fan” of Romney in the way that other people are fans of Trump, portraying him as a combination of Superman and Churchill and Jesus. I just have the ability to recognize that Romney is a smarter, better, more competent human being than Donald Trump.

    Trump had a “reality show” and numerous bankruptcies and failed ventures behind him, and he was seeking more glory. For Trump, the central part of the job of being president is the rallies — because they’re a lot more fun and ego-stroking than studying issues and problems. It’s well known that he has little patience for briefings and little capacity to absorb information.

    Right now, Trump is putting virtually all his attention into an effort to overturn in election, not into the actual responsibilities of a president.

    But go ahead and ridicule Romney for 1) not defeating a popular incumbent president; and 2) speaking his mind in spite of the predictable venom from the Trump cult; and 3) bothering to think about how to protect the lives and health of Americans. The nerve!

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  70. Dustin – honestly, though, we can say similar things about some of the measures Democrats have taken in response to Trump.

    One of my problems with Trump all along has been that he put us in a position where our choices were to let him damage the republic or to damage the republic ourselves in an attempt to stop him.

    His election guaranteed that the republic would suffer some damage no matter what, it was just a question of *which* damage.

    aphrael (4c4719) — 1/2/2021 @ 11:39 am

    When I said the left and right nuts are the same, I didn’t mean they were similar. I mean they are the actual same people. The guy burning down Target for the Mike Ramos Brigade of Antifa is the guy waving around his rifle to stop the steal. That sounds crazy because I am describing mentally ill people. Trump isn’t the only politician to benefit from these people, but his shamelessness is a lesson to aspiring politicians who want to be president, like Ted Cruz.

    While dozens of Republicans are trying to shut down the peaceful transition of power this week, I know that Barbara Boxer did that, I think a few other dems did too. They were mocked and laughed at. It’s not funny now I guess.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  71. Rep. Gohmert’s response to losing the case was to say that the court is saying that there is no remedy (true) and that the court is also saying people have to take to the streets and “be as violetn as Antifa and BLM”.

    A sitting Congressman is now right on the edge of calling for an armed insurrection against the US government.

    I hope the Congress kicks him out.

    He should be shunned. No committee assignments and support a primary challenger. I’d refuse to seat him too, but then, I would do a lot of things to the people leading this effort if the law allowed it.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  72. @67 Harkin, what material harm does it cause for the House to change their literary style rules?

    Nic (896fdf)

  73. Right now, Trump is putting virtually all his attention into an effort to overturn in election, not into the actual responsibilities of a president.

    Yeah, but then, is there anything important going on right now anyway? Like an inexcuably slow effort to vaccinate people during a pandemic?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  74. @64 — Exactamento. It’s bizarre how Trumpers keep saying that Romney has been exposed as a total failure because he didn’t defeat an incumbent who was still personally popular.

    Also bizarre: Trumpers insist that all the 2020 polling that had Biden consistently in the lead said nothing about how voters planned to vote, but then some post-election poll found a full 18 percent of the population saying that Trump is the person they most admire, and Trumpers say it’s proof that the election was fraudulent. (What it really demonstrates is how many people have a warped standard of judgment for character.)

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  75. Which 2024 Candidates Won 2020?
    ………
    Too soon to talk 2024? Hardly.

    So as 2020 closes, which would-be candidates are best positioned for 2024—and what should we watch out for in the year ahead?

    The Trump-Killer: Joe Biden
    ……..
    The Attention Hog: Donald Trump
    …….
    The (Almost) Ultimate Loyalist: Mike Pence
    ……..
    The Barrier Breaker: Kamala Harris
    ………
    The Republican Barrier Breakers: Nikki Haley and Tim Scott
    ……..
    The “Move On” Republicans: Larry Hogan, Chris Christie and Ben Sasse
    …….
    The Trump-ish Senators: Marco Rubio, Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton and Rick Scott
    …….
    The Red-State Governors: Kristi Noem, Ron DeSantis and Greg Abbott
    ……
    The Big Blue Governors: Andrew Cuomo and Gavin Newsom
    ……
    The Bernie Heir: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
    ……
    The TV Populist: Tucker Carlson
    ……
    The ‘This Sounds Crazy, But Hear Me Out’ Wild Card: Mike Lindell
    …….

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  76. I’m not going to say that the Supreme Court is not important, but just argue that it should be the least important part of a functioning democracy. Right now our democracy is not just polarized…it’s paralyzed and impotent. Fake-federalists like BnP would argue that this is great….gridlock ensures that Congress isn’t doing anything stupid. But the problem is that problems persist and those problems result in the the Chief Executive trying to solve them through pushing the boundaries of Executive Orders and power accrued to regulatory agencies….or by the Courts trying to resolve issues by becoming a super legislature. Giving the Court more power over the long term is a dangerous proposition…in that 5 unelected, virtually unanswerable, increasingly partisan judges will decide what power government has and how it is able to wield it. The idea that “conservatives” will always be in charge is just silly thinking.

    We need to fix our democracy. Trump may not have broke it, but he’s making it worse. We need an adult who can change the tone and challenge us to approach our neighbors in good faith. The hate has to be racheted back. We need people with ideas who want to lead. Trump is a troll who needs to go….and Cruz should know better….

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  77. Rep. Gohmert’s response to losing the case was to say that the court is saying that there is no remedy (true) and that the court is also saying people have to take to the streets and “be as violetn as Antifa and BLM”.

    A sitting Congressman is now right on the edge of calling for an armed insurrection against the US government.

    I hope the Congress kicks him out.

    He should be shunned. No committee assignments and support a primary challenger. I’d refuse to seat him too, but then, I would do a lot of things to the people leading this effort if the law allowed it.

    Patterico (115b1f) — 1/2/2021 @ 11:58 am

    That’s what the MI GOP did when a legislator made violent threats on FB. In this case it was a GOP controlled body punishing a Dem. And it is the right thing to do.

    If the people that run the GOP were sane and honest at the national level there would be more of this.

    Time123 (53ef45)

  78. Maybe this is OK in Texas, but for a public school to blow money like this (that’s at least 1000 in-state students’ tuition) is unconscionable.

    It won’t be state money that pays, it will be the booster’s, that’s normally how things goes. The AD does the firing, the department pays the contract off, and the boosters donate to recoup the costs. Now, was that money going to the University anyway? It’s a hypothetical, but I have some experience with this, and generally no, the guys (it’s always guys) are specifically football boosters (the big BBall schools generally don’t get to this point) but are not in the business of being boosters of the University general fund. In fact, most of the ones I know are actively hostile to the “elites” that run the college. They’re elite because they’re paid a 10th to a hundredth of the coaches. There are probably states that the highest paid person in the state government isn’t a state University coach, but it’s not common. Actually, someone did the math, and it’s 40 of 50 (the ones that aren’t don’t have a minor sports brand a public university); Alaska, Delaware, Vermont…

    If you think that’s bad, take a look at Gus Malzahn’s contract buyout at Auburn.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  79. Trump’s entire term has been built upon the notion that if something was successful, it was because of Trump. If something failed, it wasn’t because of Trump. He has built his life on that belief, and in whatever endeavor he has participated, that has remained the constant. It is his foundational belief. It must be nice to go through life always believing yourself to never be at fault when it’s bad, and always being the one who is responsible for any successes. This even when business failure upon business failure stacks up, marriages fall apart, and the country becomes a pandemic-riddled, divisive and angry mess under his watch. Incredible.

    Dana (0e0a37)

  80. We need an adult who can change the tone and challenge us to approach our neighbors in good faith.

    Recently I heard someone (name forgotten now) say something like this: “In this country I have no right to expect to get my way on policy more than half the time, but I do have a right to expect competency most of the time.”

    We can try to persuade a majority to agree with us on what’s the best policy. If people don’t agree, it’s probably not because they’re evil and enemies of America.

    Back in 2015-16, Trump boosters included people who expected him to be a purer, more resolute conservative than we had seen in decades, and people who sneered at “purists” and hailed Trump as a great “problem solver” of extraordinary practical intelligence who cares only about “results.” And then there was the group chanting “He fights!” and “He makes the right people mad!”

    The third group actually had the more accurate view of Trump, except that they never acknowledged that he fights for himself more than for any other cause. But they think “fighting for Trump” is the highest cause.

    The idea of competency in governance has been tarred as something that “the tyranny of elites” or the Deep State imposes on us. So Romney is bad because he thinks about how to do something effectively. Trump is a hero because he fights against “experts.”

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  81. @79 — It never ceases to amaze me that the most blindingly obvious traits of Trump — particularly his extreme self-absorption — are either denied by many (who should be smart enough to recognize them), or dismissed as completely irrelevant to how he approaches the responsibilities of the office. Trump boosters keep telling us that someone so often hailed as “unfiltered” is really not the person he presents to the public.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  82. The Normal and Ordinary Party.

    Now we’re getting somewhere.

    Along similar lines, The Proudly Boring Party, or its pithier cousin, The Know Somethings.

    Personally I’d go with The Not Droolingly Batsh1t Crazy Party, but that may not be to everyone’s taste.

    lurker (d8c5bc)

  83. Townhall counts eleven fascist Republicans in the Senate to go with the 140 fascist Republicans in the House.
    I hate my party.

    Paul Montagu (bff05d)

  84. In good conscience, I left it, Paul. I just couldn’t do it anymore. I no longer recognized the party, no longer identified with what I was seeing play out in the halls of power, did not want to be a part of the idolatry of a con man and give tacit approval, like his sycophants, by turning the other way when his behavior was corrupt and dishonest. I felt that remaining in it would require more and more of an ethical compromise that I was simply unwilling to make. Of course, everyone’s path is different.

    Dana (cc9481)

  85. 36.Unfortunately, no attention is being paid to the long-term damage being done by Trumpers in the Republican Party.

    Echoes of 1964.

    One person’s long-term damage is another person’s long-term fix.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  86. It’s fun watching tailwagger frustrated at realizing they no longer wag the dog in front of them.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  87. I think anyone who has tried to think about this for more than five minutes realizes in the next couple of elections, at some point the democrats are going to win the popular vote, lose the EC, and argue they have a moral reason to refuse to go along with the EC. The GOP weakening the EC’s strength at peaceful transitions of power is going to justify democrats doing the same thing, which will only lead to a greater constitutional crisis.

    I’m sure Trump’s been offered and dismissed this concern, because it doesn’t matter to him what happens to the GOP, and it doesn’t really matter to him what happens to America either.

    But partisan republicans who are worried about democrats winning: think about that. The GOP just poisoned the Electoral College, without which it has far less power. Indeed, if you’re worried about ballot box stuffing, think about what it means if we do abandon the EC because of the problems you guys are creating.

    BnP says America deserves it. This is the whirlwind we reap.

    Well… someone’s going to be reaping something they’ve been sowing at least.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  88. Federalist Party, is good, Kevin, but I associate it with the Trump-friendly opinion site with Mollie Hemingway that has sullied the name, but I’ve got some others:
    Libertine Party.
    Traditional Conservative Party, which is a mouthful.
    Lincoln Party.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  89. Like minds, Paul: c

    Anything with the word “Federalist” in it reminds me of The Federalist website. They pretty much own it now. Unfortunately, they are full-on Trump. So that’s a no-go for me as well.

    Dana (cc9481) — 1/2/2021 @ 11:06 am

    Dana (cc9481)

  90. Mitch McConnell would probably prefer to have it called the Republican Party and have the Trump faction leave. Maybe realrepublicanparty?

    Or maybe let Trump capture an empty shell and at some pint later get the name back.

    In some states the local Republican party will affiliate with the non-Ted Cruz, non-Trump faction; in others with the Republican Party (Trump)

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  91. That’s not how politics works, Sammy. What the Party will do is try to cut off the New Turks from the Party machinery. The big money donors, the mailing lists, the organizers, the foot soldiers, the volunteers, and the lawyers, and put up its own candidates in the primaries.

    nk (1d9030)

  92. In New York City on Saturday and Sunday midday (and true midnight) is exactly at 12:00

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  93. Pence Welcomes Futile Bid by G.O.P. Lawmakers to Overturn Election

    Vice President Mike Pence signaled support on Saturday for a futile Republican bid to overturn the election in Congress next week, after 11 Republican senators and senators-elect said that they would vote to reject President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory when the House and Senate meet to formally certify it.

    The announcement by the senators — and Mr. Pence’s move to endorse it — reflected a groundswell among Republicans to defy the unambiguous results of the election and indulge President Trump’s attempts to remain in power with false claims of voting fraud.
    ………
    The senators’ opposition to certifying Mr. Biden’s election will not change the outcome. But it guarantees that what would normally be a perfunctory session on Capitol Hill on Wednesday to ratify the results of the presidential election will instead become a partisan brawl, in which Republicans amplify specious claims of widespread election rigging that have been debunked and dismissed for weeks even as Mr. Trump has stoked them.
    ………
    It will also pose a political dilemma for Republicans, forcing them to choose between accepting the results of a democratic election — even if it means angering supporters who dislike the outcome and could punish them at the polls — and joining their colleagues in displaying unflinching loyalty to Mr. Trump, who has demanded in increasingly angry fashion that they back his bid to cling to the presidency.
    ………
    In their statement, the Republicans cited poll results showing most members of their party believe the election was “rigged,” an assertion that Mr. Trump has made for months, and which has been repeated in the right-wing news media and by many Republican members of Congress.
    ……..
    ……..[A]s Mr. Trump continues to perpetuate the myth of widespread voter fraud, a growing number of Republicans in Congress have been eager to challenge the results, either out of devotion to the president or out of fear of enraging the base of their party that still reveres him even in defeat.

    That is the case even though the vast majority of them just won elections in the very same balloting they are now claiming was fraudulently administered.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  94. What would have greater impact? Moderate and conservative republicans voting in democrat primaries, or those folks going third party, and the democrats shifting to the left in outrage over Trump/Cruz?

    What’s more important? Voting for someone who agrees with me on everything, or repudiating the GOP’s effort to steal an election and refuse peaceful transition of power?

    The worst thing that could happen to the AOC wing of the fruitcake party would be for fifty million Romney voters to join her party and get active in defining it.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  95. Trump Rages Over His Own Administration’s COVID-19 Death Toll: ‘Fake News’
    President Donald Trump on Sunday baselessly accused his own administration of inflating the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the U.S. as the pandemic’s death toll ticked past 350,000 nationwide earlier in the day.

    Trump, who has downplayed the threat of the coronavirus from the get-go, attacked the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for having a “ridiculous method” for counting the number of infections and deaths.
    ………
    But some public health experts say the number of COVID-19 cases is actually likely underreported since many people infected with the virus may be asymptomatic or show only mild symptoms and not seek treatment.

    A recent study co-authored by nine scientists who work for the CDC found the actual number of COVID-19 cases as of late September was likely more than seven times higher than the official U.S. count. (The research was conducted in the scientists’ own personal capacities and was not sanctioned by the CDC.)
    ………
    Asked about Trump’s claim Sunday, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams told CNN that he has “no reason to doubt” the official death toll.

    “One of the most challenging things about this entire pandemic … has been trying to get health information to the American people in the midst of politics,” Adams said. “I’m focused on making sure people can get the information they need.”
    ……..
    “The deaths are real deaths,” Fauci said when asked (on ABC’s “This Week”) about Trump’s accusation against the CDC. “All you need to do is to go out into the trenches, go to the hospitals, see what the health care workers are dealing with. They are under very stressed situations.”

    “In many areas of the country, the hospital beds are stretched,” he continued. “People are running out of beds, running out of trained personnel. … That’s real. That’s not fake.”
    ………

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  96. There will not be a new national political party any time soon, it may be decades if ever. State Democratic and Republican parties set the rules for ballot access, and they have made it exceedingly difficult to allow new parties on the ballot.

    In addition, our own political system discourages multiple political parties, given candidates run in single member districts and winners are “first past the post”. Parliamentary systems are more likely to lead to the creation of new parties since the government is based on having a majority in the legislature, and a faction can easily set up a new party and bring down a government (Italy, Israel) or if their electoral system allows for individual constituent voting and voting for a national party list (Germany).

    To dream the impossible dream……”

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  97. As far as a name goes, the Federalist Party in early American history favored a strong central government while the Democratic-Republican Party (Anti-Federalists) were in opposition.

    Perhaps the new party should be called the Anti-Federalists?

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  98. It really has to be a splinter party that takes with it many elected officials. In some states maybe they can force the Trump faction to be the splinter group.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  99. “I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have, because we won the state.” – Trump to GA Sec of State.

    Davethulhu (95ea9f)

  100. 96. You mean that third parties stand a chance where people vote for party lists, or partially for party lists AND you need to get a majority in Parliament to form a government.

    Parties are now so strong that southern whites who did not like the Democratic Party after the 1960s became Republicans. And the Republican Party became an extremely minority party in the 1930s without giving rise to any other parties.

    If the Republican Party splits one faction will become dominant. But it could be the Trump people who are left holding the bag.

    Especially if Mitch McConnell becomes the Chairman of the anti-Trump faction. Will we see that? It’s probably up to Trump.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  101. Biden has not filled the posts of Attorney General (probably awaiting the Georgia election results) and that of Secretary of Commerce and Secretary of Labor (which Bernie Sanders wants)

    Biden is actually extremely cautious.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  102. Trump isn’t forgetting entirely about the coronavirus.

    Donald J. Trump
    @realDonaldTrump
    ·
    5h

    The number of cases and deaths of the China Virus is far exaggerated in the United States because of @CDCgov’s ridiculous method of determination compared to other countries, many of whom report, purposely, very inaccurately and low. “When in doubt, call it Covid.” Fake News!

    Now the truth is, the exact numbers are half garbage and you can’t compare between different countries – you can’t even compare between different states of the United States – without knowing what goes into them and how they are compiled.

    But what you can tell is excess mortality, which includes indirect and direct causes and even cardiac arrest probably caused by Covid and what they show is that the number of deaths in the United States in 2020 was something more than 15% over the baseline.

    Which I think would make the death toll more than the one third of a million generally given.

    In a New York Times article it said that at some point during the year Trump was claiming that excess mortality showed a much lower figure. I don’t know where he got that from.

    By the way, the number of Covid deaths could be more than the excess mortality because you have to account for lives saved because of fewer automobile accidents and less elective surgery.

    At least this is easier to come to grips with than his election arguments. According to Trump Brad
    Raffensperger was left speechless by his arguments and he didn’t know how to answer him. I think he does have an answer to the ballots under the table, but he may not have followed the particular accusation enough to understand what was being alleged. Somebody needs to write an encyclopedia

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  103. Trump:

    Donald J. Trump
    @realDonaldTrump
    ·
    The vaccines are being delivered to the states by the Federal Government far faster than they can be administered!

    True. Here, Trump is latching onto a real accusation. (you can nitpic about maybe how the federal government should do the whole thing but that would be worse)

    He doesn’t pinpoint the error that was made, or suggest a remedy.

    Here is Dr. Scott Gottlieb (for example) today on Face the Nation.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/transcript-scott-gottlieb-discusses-coronavirus-on-face-the-nation-january-3-2021

    DR. GOTTLIEB: Well, look, we’ve- we have 40 million vaccines that- that were delivered in December. Five million were injected into arms. That’s 35 million vaccines sitting on a shelf somewhere.

    I’m saying that we can be delivering these vaccines directly to Walmart and Walgreens, and in New Jersey they’re shipping them through ShopRite, and allow these retail establishments to start opening up more general vaccination programs for the broader public instead of working very slowly through these preordained phases that we’ve articulated…

    …If someone who is 70 years old or 65 years old wants to schedule an appointment at CVS to get a vaccination, they should be able to do that this month. So, I think we should start working through the age brackets and just work our way down until we work off some of the supply. There’s more vaccine coming on the market every day. We’re going to have a significant backlog right now or, you know, warehouse inventory of vaccines. And that’s tragic because these could be accomplishing an important public health purpose,

    MARGARET BRENNAN: Right, well because Operation Warp Speed is already stockpiling half- more than half of the supply that they have. What about vaccine hesitancy, the- the governor of Ohio said 60% of nursing home staff members offered the vaccine in his state declined it. You’re seeing similar hesitancy elsewhere. These are medical personnel and health care staff and they’re saying no.

    DR. GOTTLIEB: Yeah, look, that’s another reason to be making this more generally accessible. It is a reality that some people aren’t going to want to get vaccinated, or are going to be reluctant to get vaccinated. It is going to take more work.

    There’s about 150 million Americans who get vaccinated for flu each year. About 60 million of them are under the age of 15. So that’s about 90 million people who get vaccinated for flu. I think that’s your low hanging fruit for getting COVID vaccinations out. Some high proportion of the people who get a flu vaccine are also going to get a COVID vaccine.

    If we just simply make this generally accessible to 65 and above this month, that’s 50 million Americans, probably about 30 million of them will take it. That’s your low hanging fruit. That’s the pent-up demand. We need to start working that off because trying to push it into, you know, very discrete populations, you’re going to be bumping up against people who don’t want it and it’s going to create friction. It’s going to create a slowdown in trying to get this vaccination out. We need to get more people vaccinated quickly and recognize that every vaccination at this point really is a public health win.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  104. @100-
    US political parties are actually very weak. Unlike parliamentary parties, there is no formal party discipline and Democrats or Republican congressional members aren’t kicked out of the party for voting against the party.

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  105. @99-
    Two questions:

    Who leaked the phone call and why hasn’t WaPo posted the audio?

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  106. 105 cont’d:

    My guess it was someone on Georgia side of the call. This leak will drive Trump nuts.

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  107. The Sec State said Trump was lying about the call and the truth would come out. I think it’s pretty obvious he recorded the call. I think anyone on a phone call with Trump, adversarial or his ‘friends’ would be wise to consider recording all that they talk about. I bet Cruz has some great recordings of phone calls over the years.

    I’m not sure if the Wapo has the full hour, but the audio we have is damning. Unless they literally altered his words, it is damning.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  108. 104. It’s the money and the fact that a person is allowed to contribute more to a party than to a candidate and a party, or other candidates, allowed to contribute and spend even more, that makes the parties powerful. Also, inertia.

    We’ve reached the point that national party leaders in Congress often recruit, or favor, candidates where they have no incumbent.

    https://atlantajewishtimes.timesofisrael.com/lieberman-faces-calls-to-withdraw-from-senate-race

    Lieberman has rejected calls that he withdraw to improve Warnock’s chances. “Of the top four candidates, I am the only candidate that wasn’t put here by some power broker,” Lieberman told the Atlanta Jewish Times. He argues that Collins received the nod from Trump, Loeffler was put in office by Kemp, and Warnock was chosen by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  109. “Who leaked the phone call and why hasn’t WaPo posted the audio?”

    The audio is in the link in my post.

    Davethulhu (95ea9f)

  110. Congressional leaders unveil rules governing Electoral College count
    The rules of Congress’ Jan. 6 session governing the counting of Electoral College votes will remain identical to those used for decades, under a proposal set to be introduced Sunday by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
    …….
    The procedures, if adopted, require Pence to introduce all papers “purporting” to be electoral votes. He is to read them alphabetically by state and offer lawmakers a chance to issue any objections along the way. These longstanding procedures permit as few as two lawmakers — a single House member and senator acting together — to grind the process to a halt, forcing the House and Senate to break up the joint session and debate the challenges for two hours apiece, before voting on them and returning to the joint session.
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  111. Th selling point for Warnock is that because he was black, he’d get an increased black turnout and because he was a pastor, and at Dr. Martin Luther King’s church, he would be perceived of as a moderate.

    Never mind reality.

    And there was probably a great deal of logrolling involved to come up with him. So they got their candidate for the runoff. They always knew there would be a runoff for the Loeffler seat.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  112. Lin Wood just realized these tapes prove that Donald Trump is the deep state conspiracy to make Donald Trump look bad. It goes STRAIGHT to the TOP.

    In all seriousness, I bet Trump fans wonder sometimes if Trump’s this awful as a democrat plot to ruin the GOP. I know I wonder that.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  113. For those who call themselves “conservative” and who claim to fight for limited government and the principles of federalism, tell me why a request by Republican-led states that Trump won to the Supreme Court to overturn lawfully administered and certified election results in four other states that Trump lost, isn’t the complete abandonment of everything you say you stand for? For those who claim this action is required to “restore Americans’ faith in our election process,” tell me why your repeated refrain over the last eight months that this election would be “rigged” and “rife with fraud” isn’t the real reason too many Americans have lost faith?

    Carly Fiorina said that a couple of weeks ago on twitter. I am sure she would love to have a private conversation with Ted Cruz more than practically any body. It’s fascinating comparing republicans who do not seek power with those who do these days.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  114. I bet Trump fans wonder sometimes if Trump’s this awful as a democrat plot to ruin the GOP.

    I think Trump fans would become Democrats in a heartbeat of Trump suddenly switched parties.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  115. WaPo Releases Full Audio and Transcript of Call With Georgia SOS

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  116. From the call:

    ……..As you know, every single state … we won every state. we one every statehouse in the country. We held the Senate which is shocking to people, although we’ll see what happens tomorrow or in a few days.

    And we won the House, but we won every single statehouse and we won Congress……

    Comedy gold!

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  117. Rally size:

    ………” We won very substantially in Georgia. You even see it by rally size, frankly. We’d be getting 25-30,000 people a rally and the competition would get less than 100 people. And it never made sense. ……
    ……..
    …… And I could tell you by our rallies. I could tell you by the rally I’m having on Monday night, the place, they already have lines of people standing out front waiting. It’s just not possible to have lost Georgia. It’s not possible. When I heard it was close I said there’s no way. ……..

    ……

    Rip Murdock (45770e)

  118. @116 — I’ve long wondered when the conservative thought-leaders who are cool with Trump’s moral turpitude might start to be embarrassed by the realization that he’s crazy.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  119. Trump’s pressure on Georgia election officials raises legal questions
    …….
    Legal experts say the combination of Trump’s request to “find” a specific number of votes — just enough to put him ahead of Biden — and his veiled reference to criminal liability for Raffensperger and his aides could violate federal and state statutes aimed at guarding against the solicitation of election fraud. The potential violations of state law are particularly notable, given that they would fall outside the reach of a potential pardon by Trump or his successor. On Capitol Hill, some Republicans expressed alarm about the call, while Democrats indicated that they viewed it as a potential criminal offense.
    ……..
    “I’ve charged extortion in mob cases with similar language,” said Daniel Goldman, a former prosecutor who helped lead the House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment inquiry in 2019.

    Georgia state law includes two provisions that criminalize “solicitation of election fraud” and “conspiracy to commit election fraud.” Trump’s detractors also pointed to a federal statute that criminalizes “the procurement, casting, or tabulation of ballots that are known by the person to be materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent.”

    Anthony Michael Kreis, a Georgia State University law professor, said: “The Georgia code says that anybody who solicits, requests or commands or otherwise attempts to encourage somebody to commit election fraud is guilty of solicitation of election fraud. ‘Soliciting or requesting’ is the key language. The president asked, in no uncertain terms, the secretary of state to invent votes, to create votes that were not there. Not only did he ask for that in terms of just overturning the specific margin that Joe Biden won by, but then said we needed one additional vote to secure victory in Georgia.”

    “There’s just no way that if you read the code and the way the code is structured, and then you look at what the president of the United states requested, that he has not violated this law — the spirit of it for sure,” Kreis continued.
    ……..
    …….. He also said Trump’s request for a specific number of votes — just enough to prevail by one — undercut the notion that he was simply asking for the truth.

    “If I’m the president of the United States and my pardon power is not — does not extend to state acts, I don’t think that in the last few days of my term that I would want to be engaging in activities that even remotely subject me to the possibility of state criminal prosecution,” Kreis said. “That’s what makes this even more bewildering to me, is because if he had sensible advisers they would just keep him off the phone.”
    ………

    Rip Murdock (8bf811)

  120. He also said Trump’s request for a specific number of votes — just enough to prevail by one — undercut the notion that he was simply asking for the truth.

    Anyone who has believed that Trump only wants an honest vote count is delusional, or self-deluding.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  121. RIP Gerry Marsden MBE (78).

    Rip Murdock (8bf811)

  122. 121. Radegunda (b6cc34) — 1/3/2021 @ 4:16 pm

    Anyone who has believed that Trump only wants an honest vote count is delusional, or self-deluding.

    But that’s what Trump is pretending to be interested in.

    He’s not offering any inducement, any bribe, or making any threat to Raffensperger that he should find fraud (except within the premise, that he maintains, that there was a lot of it, so he makes the argument that if Raffensperger upholds the number, he’d be violating the law.)

    In mob cases, technically non-criminal language has been used to gain convictions, but you’ve got to show that asking Raffensperger to commit election fraud is how Trump meant what he said to be understood. But Trump never concedes that’s he’s asking for something false and he’s not offering any inducement. It amounts to saying: Can’t you look harder?

    Extortion is even a harder case to make. Talking about criminal charges would not constitute extortion because Trump has no power to bring criminal charges. He’s also wrong on the law.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  123. Trump is doing a good job of lying, but he’s not saying to Raffensperger, “just between me and you, this is not true.” He’s not acknowledging he’s lying. He’s lying on many things. Like claiming that he expects to flip other states.

    Sammy Finkelman (b78e49)

  124. But that’s what Trump is pretending to be interested in.

    I don’t see how “pretending” he only wants an honest vote count makes it okay to pressure on official to “find” a certain number of votes or to warn that he faces a “big risk” and “it’s going to be very costly in many ways” if he doesn’t do what Trump wants. Doesn’t the “pretending” part make it worse?

    So is he pretending to want an accurate vote count or truly seeking an accurate count?

    It’s actually not really either one. In Trump’s twisted mind, the only fair, honest result of any contest or any reporting or any endeavor at all is one that favors himself. This is a mentality that Trump displays on a regular basis, but his fans and shills have steadfastly ignored it and discounted the risks it poses to the country. In this case they’ll say he really, truly believes he was cheated — as though his mental pathology could excuse whatever he does, including what people who know a lot more about the law than I do are calling something very like criminal extortion.

    Trump’s actions might stem from the mental pathology of malignant narcissism and self-centered delusions, but that doesn’t mean he’s innocent in the damage he is doing.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  125. DCSCA is going to lose his freaking mind when he learns about the Kamala plagiarism thing.

    https://thepostmillennial.com/kamala-harris-lifts-her-fwee-dom-story-from-mlk-interview-in-playboy/

    Dustin (4237e0)


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