Patterico's Pontifications

1/4/2021

There’s Battle Lines Being Drawn

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



On one side are the cretins trying to steal an election, while pretending that they are acting to save democracy and not destroy it. To this list of frauds, add the name Elise Stefanik.

Raise you hand if you’re surprised.

I see no hands.

To the side of the minimally decent — people who deserve no real praise for doing the absolute minimum and who are still repeating falsehoods about the election, but at least are not working to set a precedent that Congress can toss the judgment of tens of millions of voters out the window — add the name Tom Cotton.

“I share the concerns of many Arkansans about irregularities in the presidential election, especially in states that rushed through election-law changes to relax standards for voting-by-mail. I also share their disappointment with the election results. I therefore support a commission to study the last election and propose reforms to protect the integrity of our elections. And after Republicans win in Georgia, the Senate should also hold more hearings on these matters. All Americans deserve to have confidence in the elections that undergird our free government.

Nevertheless, the Founders entrusted our elections chiefly to the states—not Congress. They entrusted the election of our president to the people, acting through the Electoral College—not Congress. And they entrusted the adjudication of election disputes to the courts—not Congress. Under the Constitution and federal law, Congress’s power is limited to counting electoral votes submitted by the states.

If Congress purported to overturn the results of the Electoral College, it would not only exceed that power, but also establish unwise precedents. First, Congress would take away the power to choose the president from the people, which would essentially end presidential elections and place that power in the hands of whichever party controls Congress. Second, Congress would imperil the Electoral College, which gives small states like Arkansas a voice in presidential elections. Democrats could achieve their longstanding goal of eliminating the Electoral College in effect by refusing to count electoral votes in the future for a Republican president-elect. Third, Congress would take another big step toward federalizing election law, another longstanding Democratic priority that Republicans have consistently opposed.

Thus, I will not oppose the counting of certified electoral votes on January 6. I’m grateful for what the president accomplished over the past four years, which is why I campaigned vigorously for his reelection. But objecting to certified electoral votes won’t give him a second term—it will only embolden those Democrats who want to erode further our system of constitutional government.”

OK, that does surprise me, a little.

Which side will any given GOPer choose? Minimal decency or pandering unpatriotic bullshit that shreds the bonds of civic unity?

Everybody look what’s goin’ down.

123 Responses to “There’s Battle Lines Being Drawn”

  1. I’m only surprised that Stefanik hadn’t already joined the fascist wing of my party.
    Put me in the column of “mildly surprised but in a good way” about Tom Cotton and long-time Trump defender Andrew McCarthy.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  2. In response to Cruz’s cynical attempt to lead the Senate effort to block the election, I had a vision of 2024 playing out like a funhouse-mirror version of 2016, in which the GOP field is so flooded with Trumpist candidates cannibalizing each other that a moderate like Hogan is able to waltz to the nomination with a slim plurality.

    Cotton’s effort seems to anticipate the potential for such a dynamic by trying to position him as the most moderate of the Trumpists, similarly to how Cruz tried to run as the establishment candidate most attractive to Trump’s base. I expect it will end about as well for him as it did for Cruz.

    (Not That) Bill O'Reilly (6bb12a)

  3. I’m grateful for what the president accomplished over the past four years, which is why I campaigned vigorously for his reelection. But objecting to certified electoral votes won’t give him a second term—it will only embolden those Democrats who want to erode further our system of constitutional government.

    It takes a lot of hubris to say “Democrats” in that sentence. I’d like to think a clerk reviewing this statement in his office circled that in red and called to confirm. “You sure you meant Democrats there? Oh, okay, I just thought….well, because, you know, the rest of your statement is about how this effort to overturn the presidential election can’t work and so it seems to me that maybe the Republicans are the one eroding our government by trying to keep the presidency….Right, right, I know they want to get rid of the electoral college in general but in this particular case, it’s….okay, well, as long as you’re fine with removing ‘Dear Leader’ before each reference to Trump I can live with it.”

    Johnny Agreeable (041dc0)

  4. 2, thank god in Illinois, one of our few pleasures that hasnt relocated is a voter’s ability to defer their decision on party for primary ballot until they step up to the election judge’s desk. In 2022 and 2024, Dems need to count off by 2s in states with similar flexibility.

    urbanleftbehind (bb61b9)

  5. Cotton, like Cruz, cant escape Hahvud Law. But note that there nemeses went only to slightly more meathead elite universities (Trump, Penn…Hawley, Stanford).

    urbanleftbehind (bb61b9)

  6. (Not That) Bill O’Reilly (6bb12a) — 1/4/2021 @ 8:56 am

    hey that actually sounds possible

    I worry that the phone call we heard yesterday is simply standard operating procedure, the reason nothing has worked properly in the GOP for years, and we just won’t get a good outcome. I’ll probably vote in the democrat primary for the least nutty candidate who can win. The GOP is purifying itself.

    I agree with the argument that Cruz’s maneuver this week will badly damage the electoral college concept, and is a gift to the democrats. Fascinating how smart a guy like Cruz actually isn’t.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  7. I’m no Tom Cotton fan but I thought his statement there was fine.

    nate (1f1d55)

  8. @7 He’s absolutely right about setting dangerous precedents (or, re-upping it).

    whembly (a23745)

  9. Yes Dustin, but give it a few more years, when Texas may well match up to California’s voting population and Florida’s taken another million from New York/ New Jersey. And those states managed to scare enough Hispanic voters of socialism to cancel out any new blue.

    urbanleftbehind (bb61b9)

  10. Trump warns Cotton after senator says he won’t object to Biden certification

    President Trump on Monday targeted Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) a day after the senator said he would not join an effort to object to the certification of Electoral College votes affirming Joe Biden as the next president.

    “How can you certify an election when the numbers being certified are verifiably WRONG,” Trump tweeted, suggesting he would falsely claim during his rally in Georgia on Monday night that he was a true winner of the election despite multiple audits and court cases confirming Biden had won and that Trump claims lacked standing.

    “@SenTomCotton Republicans have pluses & minuses, but one thing is sure, THEY NEVER FORGET!” Trump added.
    ……

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  11. The power center in the GOP is with the corrupt, the dishonest, and conspiracy theorists.

    I don’t think Hawley or Cruz are cretins. They’re well educated and smart. What they’re doing is intentional and dismissing it as stupidity improves their actions from criminal and unpatriotic to simply ‘mistaken‘.

    I now look forward to someone coming in to ask whatabout and draw equivalence between things that are happening and offenses that happened only in their imagination.

    Time123 (36651d)

  12. There’s another easy dividing line: Those who believe the ends justify the means and there are those who think there are some means that no ends can justify. Congrats to Mr. Cotton for being in the latter.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  13. Looking ahead to 2024, I wonder what the “real conservative” position on universal mail in voting and voter ID will be. Who can tell. I guess it depends on who’s running.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  14. Cotton’s statement was logical, especially in regards to how the law stipulates that the elections are left to the states.

    Time to tighten voter laws and make sure we put the proper penalties on those who engage in fraud. Loss of citizenship would be an appropriate starting point.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  15. @7 He’s absolutely right about setting dangerous precedents (or, re-upping it).

    whembly (a23745) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:20 am

    Absolutely. I’ll repeat my prediction that democrats will try to challenge votes cast in southern states by claiming they’re illegitimate due to voter suppression.

    Time123 (36651d)

  16. Should Senator Hawley be expelled?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  17. Fascinating how smart a guy like Cruz actually isn’t.

    Cruz is a paradigmatic example of how narrowly “smart” is defined in elite circles to focus on articulate presentation and being informed of the “facts”–the same sort of attributes that make for a successful collegiate debater. This definition awkwardly shunts aside scientific/mathematical intelligence from the public square, and outright ignores emotional intelligence. Cruz is so supremely confident in his tactical ability to win any given round that he lacks the strategic vision to ever prepare for the next one.

    (Not That) Bill O'Reilly (6bb12a)

  18. they’re illegitimate due to voter suppression.

    Last time was due to Reconstruction.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  19. @15 Yup. Usually it’s only relegated to few crank House Democrats. But, it’s an escalation from Boxer’s objection to Bush’s Ohio win in 2006. Now, with 10+ GOP senators going to object, in 2024 and beyond we’ll see objections from the losing party as the norm, rather than the crank few.

    whembly (a23745)

  20. I don’t think Hawley or Cruz are cretins. They’re well educated and smart. What they’re doing is intentional and dismissing it as stupidity improves their actions from criminal and unpatriotic to simply ‘mistaken‘.

    I now look forward to someone coming in to ask whatabout and draw equivalence between things that are happening and offenses that happened only in their imagination.

    Time123 (36651d) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:24 am

    They are intelligent morons. It is not hard to work out a way Cruz could be a real winner in all this, if he simply said what he really thought in the 2016 convention, lost his Senate seat, and kept speaking plainly and honestly, like he did in the Iowa primary against corn subsidies. Imagine if the GOP’s runner up in the 2016 election was an outsider who was smart and honest, how much better off we’d be today. Romney is the best the GOP’s got, and frankly he is not that conservative so it’s just not going to work that well.

    Cruz is going to be partly responsible when the reforms in the next few years include dismantling the EC process. The democrats will take full advantage, the most cynical advantage. It’s easy to point to Trump’s naked corruption, and those who pretend they don’t recognize it as the problem, but power’s going into other hands that aren’t really clean ones.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  21. Loss of citizenship would be an appropriate starting point.

    That would violate the 14th Amendment.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  22. Cotton’s statement was logical, especially in regards to how the law stipulates that the elections are left to the states.

    Time to tighten voter laws and make sure we put the proper penalties on those who engage in fraud. Loss of citizenship would be an appropriate starting point.

    NJRob (eb56c3) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:26 am

    Why? Trump has an army of lawyers and effectively limitless coffers. All of that hasn’t managed to find any substantial numbers of voter fraud.

    -almost no double voting.
    -almost no fraudulent ballots from the deceased.
    -almost no fraudulent mail in ballots.
    -almost no late ballots.
    -almost no miscounting.

    I’m saying ‘almost’ to cover myself from single digit cases in a country with over 150 million ballots. But all the deep dives that the 2020 election has been pretty convincing that our existing process are sufficient to ensure free and fair elections. I don’t see evidence that additional costs or barriers to voting are necessary.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  23. I had a vision of 2024 playing out like a funhouse-mirror version of 2016, in which the GOP field is so flooded with Trumpist candidates cannibalizing each other that a moderate like Hogan is able to waltz to the nomination with a slim plurality.

    Yeah, I was suggesting that a few days ago. If there is one candidate who calls Trump an ignorant moron who should be in prison, and attracts all the #NeverTrump votes amid a sea of Trumpbots, that 30% might stand up like Trump’s did.

    Then we can all say “Binary Choice! Socialism! Support ____ or support AOC!” and similar.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  24. Not surprising, Mike Lee correctly argues that Congress has no authority to judge electors:

    LEE: “With respect to presidential elections, there is no authority for Congress to make value judgments in the abstract regarding any state’s election laws or the manner in which they have been implemented.”

    — Alex Isenstadt (@politicoalex) January 4, 2021

    whembly (a23745)

  25. I don’t think Hawley or Cruz are cretins. They’re well educated and smart. What they’re doing is intentional and dismissing it as stupidity improves their actions from criminal and unpatriotic to simply ‘mistaken‘.

    It can be both. Hawley and Cruz are smart enough, in one sense of the term, to understand what they’re doing, and their cynical ploy is contemptible.

    They are also not smart enough, in a different sense of the term, to realize that this same ploy isn’t going to play out in their favor the way they hope.

    (Not That) Bill O'Reilly (6bb12a)

  26. Loss of citizenship would be an appropriate starting point.

    I see no constitutional basis for a law stripping a native-born American of citizenship.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  27. Should Senator Hawley be expelled?

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:29 am

    If the GOP caucus voted to strip them of seniority and committee appointments it would go a long way to convincing me the party wasn’t run unpatriotic crooks who care less for our country then their own person glory.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  28. They are intelligent morons.

    No, they are simply self-serving. Once conservative, they now blow with the wind.

    “…and the prevailing wind happens to be from Vichy.”
    — Captain Renault, Casablanca

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  29. @25, I’m saying they’re not stupid enough to believe what they’re saying. They know they’re lying.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  30. Cotton surprised me when he turned schnitzel-slurper. This is more like my first impression of him.

    Enlisted in the regular Army, rose from private to captain, 101st Airborne, combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, Bronze Star, Combat Infantryman Badge. Not a “What Would Roy Cohn Do” kind of guy.

    nk (1d9030)

  31. “I am committed to restoring the faith of the American people in our elections – that they are free, fair, secure, and according to the United States Constitution.”

    Then dissolve the political parties which have thrown sand into the gears of an elegantly designed machine for decades.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  32. Looking ahead to 2024, I wonder what the “real conservative” position on universal mail in voting and voter ID will be. Who can tell. I guess it depends on who’s running.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:24 am

    I don’t know what conservative means anymore so you can tell me. We should establish a system for voting that balances the needs to minimize error and fraud with the need to minimize impediments to lawful ballots. To the extent possible that balance should be based on actual behaviors.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  33. If the GOP caucus voted to strip them of seniority and committee appointments

    That would throw down the gauntlet wrt Trump. After that, Trump would have no particular power over them other than running candidates in the primaries. Only problem is removing 12 Senators from committees would make it very hard to maintain a majority on committees.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  34. Then again, maybe the party needs to split. Kicking those 12 Senators out of the GOP Caucus would make it official. They could become Trumpists officially.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  35. @34, That’s a logistical problem that could be solved.

    Time123 (36651d)

  36. “However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.”

    George Washington
    Farewell Address | Saturday, September 17, 1796

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  37. Looking ahead to 2024, I wonder what the “real conservative” position on universal mail in voting and voter ID will be. .

    Show me your papers.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  38. That’s a logistical problem that could be solved.

    Stripping them of seniority would be enough. They get to move to the end of the row.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  39. I doubt it’ll go anywhere, but I sent my Congresswoman a letter asking her to vote to expel Gohmert and then impeach him so that he can’t hold future public office.

    I do wonder, on some level, at what point the feckless response of the Democrats is enabling the problem and at what point I have to consider refusing to vote for sitting Democratic officeholders because they aren’t doing enough to protect the Republic in its moment of danger.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  40. @33: Not sure you left yourself enough wiggle room, Time123. Looks like this is going to be a tough one to decide.

    As for me:

    Universal mail in voting -> No
    Voter ID -> Yes

    Doesn’t matter to me whether Trump is on the ballot or not.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  41. I don’t think a Congressman can be impeached.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  42. This definition awkwardly shunts aside scientific/mathematical intelligence from the public square, and outright ignores emotional intelligence.

    Among myself & siblings, educational levels stretch from doctorates to one semester of community college, but it’s clear to me that levels of overall intelligence do not range along a corresponding scale. E.g. one brother is not strong in language but is good at figuring out how to solve practical problems.

    One thing that has baffled me in the era of Trump is that so many apparently smart people don’t recognize his most obvious trait: his profoundly self-centered sense of right and wrong, true and false. Or they don’t acknowledge that it could be a problem in someone who wields great power. Or they think it’s super-smart to take the position that the truth is very different from what looks most obvious.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  43. I would call it the Hawley-Cruz-Eleven, Rip.

    Loss of citizenship would be an appropriate starting point.
    NJRob (eb56c3) — 1/4/2021 @ 9:26 am

    Attempting to revoke birthright citizenship is a breach of our 14th Amendment. It’s already a felony to commit vote fraud, which has already worked pretty well as a deterrent.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  44. Republicans Are Setting A Bad Precedent With Electoral College Challenge, Says …; Update: Congress Has No Authority To Judge Electors, Declares Mike Lee
    ……
    If anything, Cotton might be underestimating the poisonous precedent that this sets. Cotton warns that this will threaten to turn our federal system into a parliamentary one, which might at least have some benefits along with its obvious trade-offs. He misses the part where undermining presidential elections also undermines the legitimacy of Congress itself, which gets elected in precisely the same manner and on the same ballot as presidents do. That’s the point Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) plans to make in challenging the seating of colleagues in any state Republicans plan to challenge. If Cotton really wanted to connect that last dot, he might consider challenging the seating of Republicans from those states who won in November. …..
    …….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  45. As long as they don’t discriminate on the basis of race, former condition of servitude, sex, or age above 18, any state should implement any voting system its like for the most numerous branch of its state legislature and apply it to its federal elections, and every other state should mind its own beeswax.

    nk (1d9030)

  46. 17.Fascinating how smart a guy like Cruz actually isn’t.

    There’s a lot of The Donald in Tedtoo, media-wise.
    ____

    Nunes & Jordan to be awarded Medal of Freedom.

    “The Presidential Medal of Freedom is an award bestowed by the president of the United States to recognize people who have made “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.” -source, wikibullcrap.com

    Priorities; priorities.

    Where is our $2000 emergency Covid aid and our batches of vaccine?

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  47. I’m not disposed to be particularly generous to Tom Cotton here given that he joined the Amicus brief on behalf of the Texas suit. I think he’s being pragmatic on carving out a space for himself moving forward.

    tla (34ebeb)

  48. BnP @41-
    Please define “universal mail-in voting.” Does that include “no excuses” mail-in voting? Here in California you don’t need an excuse for a mail-in ballot, I haven’t voted in a polling place for 40 years. Or Oregon, which has conducted its elections entirely by mail since 1987.

    Given that states are responsible for elections, are you favoring “federalizing” how elections are conducted?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  49. If anything, Cotton might be underestimating the poisonous precedent that this sets.

    He also seems to be suggesting: It isn’t that what Republicans are doing is so terribly bad; it’s that Democrats might be encouraged to do terrible things.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  50. And I’m sure Cotton realizes that Trump cannot be relied for longer than it takes his stubby little fingers to type out “covfefe”. Not a guy whose water you want to carry, because there’s very little chance you’ll ever get a drink of it.

    nk (1d9030)

  51. We revoke citizenship to terrorists and others who wage war against the United States. Engaging in voter fraud has the same effect as it is trying to overthrow the nation. Sadly, lawfare isn’t the same thing as that is using the legal processes to take advantage of the system to get your way.

    See the Supreme Court making up marriage law and creating a sickness in society.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  52. nk (1d9030) — 1/4/2021 @ 10:13 am

    I’m, not sure I understand what yer sayin’, sir, but I sure do like the way you say it!

    felipe (630e0b)

  53. “Everybody look what’s going down”
    __

    Does this apply to big cities and states run by Democrats?

    “In the 18-page complaint, the Association of Deputy District Attorneys of Los Angeles argues that Gascón has overstepped his executive authority with directives they say conflict with California’s mandatory sentencing enhancement laws. The new DA’s directives, the lawsuit says, “are not merely radical, but plainly unlawful.”

    L.A. Prosecutors Are at Loggerheads with Their New Boss, George Gascón

    https://www.lamag.com/citythinkblog/george-gascon-prosecutors-lawsuit/
    __ _

    Elsewhere:

    SF Chronicle – S.F. restaurant owners say rise in property crime is making dire situation worse

    NY Post – Charged with murder, stabbing? In NYC, you’re free to go

    DC Examiner – Nearly 800 killed in Chicago as murders skyrocket in 2020

    Daily Caller – It Took Six Months Of Rioting, Millions In Property Damage For Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler To Escalate Law Enforcement Efforts Against Antifa
    __

    Congrats to all those who voted for Democrats. Extra congrats if the Senate is flipped by the GA elections.
    _

    harkin (8fadc8)

  54. Washington state also conducts elections almost entirely by mail. It is more likely than not that California will do so going forward, as well; there’s been a long term drift in that direction *anyway*, the state was pilot projecting it in certain counties before the pandemic hit, and the Secretary of State designate* supports it.

    *Governor Newsom has announced that he will appoint the current Secretary of State to the Senate when Harris resigns, and that he will appoint Shirley Weber to replace him as Secretary of State once he resigns that office to take his Senate seat. Since Harris *hasn’t resigned yet* (an act for which I have more than a certain amount of contempt because it means that Padilla will have less seniority than the Senators who were sworn in yesterday), she’s not the Secretary of State yet, but her support for the proposition matters a lot because she’ll be Secretary of State for the next election.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  55. We revoke citizenship to terrorists and others who wage war against the United States.

    Naturalized citizens may have their citizenship revoked, but not persons born in the United States.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  56. Harkin – I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect the proprietor of this blog to comment publically on issues involving LA’s DA.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  57. @49: I’m in favor of absentee ballots, for those physically unable to cast a ballot in person. Everyone else goes through the insurmountable effort of voting in person, a civic duty.

    I’ve lived in both OR and CA, so I know how that works. It’s no coincidence that they’re both now one party states.

    I’m not in favor of federalizing elections. My comment had nothing to do with that.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  58. I’m not in favor of federalizing elections. My comment had nothing to do with that.

    I was just wondering, since that is the only way to achieve your goals on a national level. Changing laws in 50 states is tough row to hoe.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  59. House Republican: I’ll Challenge House Elections For Every State Fellow Republicans Challenge In Presidential Election

    A clever move by Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX), and one that cuts to the heart of the hypocrisy over the move to challenge the electors on behalf of Donald Trump. If the election was rigged, wouldn’t it be rigged all the way down the ballot? And if the standard for disparaging the election process is “many people are asking questions,” then why should anyone take the House or Senate election results from November seriously?
    ……
    Roy will force his fellow House Republicans to experience the same burden-shifting with which they have indulged Trump for the last several weeks. Trump and his allies have utterly failed to prove widespread fraud or even malfeasance in court, so now they want their opponents to prove a negative by demanding the overturning of an election if the winner cannot prove the non-existence of widespread fraud. If that’s their standard, then each of those objectors who won seats in the same election should be able to prove the non-existence of fraud in their own wins — right? If they can’t do that, then their only legitimate claim to the office is the certification by the same states whose results they’re rejecting from the same ballot counts.
    …….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  60. @54 — All that has happened while Donald Trump was Making America Great Again. He demands credit for anything good that has happened, so it’s only fair to hold him responsible for the bad.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  61. We revoke citizenship to terrorists and others who wage war against the United States. Engaging in voter fraud has the same effect as it is trying to overthrow the nation. Sadly, lawfare isn’t the same thing as that is using the legal processes to take advantage of the system to get your way.

    What do you mean by this? Do you want this guy, in addition to the 100K fine an jail time to have his citizenship revoked and be exiled from the US? Or this one? Her actions are worse, but still had little impact on the outcome.

    None of them did anything I’d say is comparable to blowing up the OK federal building.

    Do you have an example of someone committing voter fraud that you feel does warrant loss of citizenship as a punishment?

    Time123 (6e0727)

  62. @49: I’m in favor of absentee ballots, for those physically unable to cast a ballot in person. Everyone else goes through the insurmountable effort of voting in person, a civic duty.

    I’ve lived in both OR and CA, so I know how that works. It’s no coincidence that they’re both now one party states.

    I’m not in favor of federalizing elections. My comment had nothing to do with that.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67) — 1/4/2021 @ 10:30 am

    If you can show that absentee voting leads to higher error or fraud I’ll agree with you. Otherwise it’s a hypothetical concern. I voted absentee this time. It was nice. Wouldn’t mind doing it again. MO is a 1 party state, as is AL. Not sure that fact makes much of a point.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  63. From the Wall Street Journal’s editorial on Jan. 3:

    But the scramble to overturn the will of the voters tarnishes Mr. Trump’s legacy and undermines any designs he has on running in 2024. Republicans who humor him will be giving Democrats license to do the same in the future, and then it might matter.

    So: it doesn’t matter if our side does bad stuff. It only matters when the other side does bad stuff.

    Trumpers can keep shouting “what about the Dems?” all they want, but it bothers me more when the side I had identified with is so blatantly hypocritical and amoral.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  64. If you can show that absentee voting leads to higher error or fraud I’ll agree with you. Otherwise it’s a hypothetical concern.

    Clever.

    How about this: If you can show that in-person voting with voter ID is just as likely as universal mail in voting to provide a credibility hole that partisans can drive a truck through, I’ll come around to your position, whatever it is. You don’t seem to want to spell it out directly.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  65. How about this: If you can show that in-person voting with voter ID is just as likely as universal mail in voting to provide a credibility hole that partisans can drive a truck through, I’ll come around to your position, whatever it is. You don’t seem to want to spell it out directly.

    You specifically called out “universal mail ballots”, it’s your assertion, you own it.

    There are 5 states that have mail only voting, one is Utah. That bastion of liberal thought.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  66. There are 5 states that have mail only voting, one is Utah. That bastion of liberal thought.

    Heh!

    nk (1d9030)

  67. Given my really low expectations of the GOP at this point, I’ll just say kudos to Senator Cotton, Granted, that is a very low bar for something every elected member of Congress should do. But in today’s Trumpy GOP, this is about as good as we’re going to get, at least for now.

    HCI (92ea66)

  68. @66 – It isn’t bad unless the other side does it.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  69. We revoke citizenship to terrorists and others who wage war against the United States. Engaging in voter fraud has the same effect as it is trying to overthrow the nation.

    Or this guy?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  70. Milwaukee law firm ‘concerned’ by attorney’s role in Trump call trying to upend Georgia election results

    A Milwaukee-based law firm is distancing itself from one of the attorneys involved in President Donald Trump’s disturbing call trying to overturn the results of the Georgia election.

    Cleta Mitchell, a partner at Foley & Lardner, participated in the Saturday call in which Trump pressured the Georgia secretary of state to “find” 11,780 votes to help Trump win that state’s election.

    In a statement, a spokesman for Foley said the firm does not represent “any parties seeking to contest the results of the presidential election.”

    “We are aware of, and are concerned by, Ms. Mitchell’s participation in the Jan. 2 conference call and are working to understand her involvement more thoroughly,” Dan Farrell, director of communication for Foley, said in a statement Monday.
    …..
    In his statement, Farrell said the firm did allow for its attorneys to participate in recounts and related matters as long as they were acting as private citizens and not serving as legal advisers.

    Mitchell was not immediately available to respond to the statement from her firm.
    …..
    Earlier, she issued a statement to the Washington Post defending the disturbing call. She said the Georgia secretary of state “has made many statements over the past two months that are simply not correct and everyone involved with the efforts on behalf of the President’s election challenge has said the same thing: show us your records on which you rely to make these statements that our numbers are wrong.”

    Mitchell and her law firm have come under fire on social media since details of Trump’s hourlong call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger over the weekend were first reported by the Post.
    …….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  71. It isn’t bad unless the other side does it.

    Indeed.

    “Meanwhile, some yahoo Obama appointee in Texas has struck down the voter ID law there, calling it a “poll tax.” They’ll be saying that about registration itself soon enough.”

    How real conservatism has changed. Principles and stuff.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  72. How real conservatism has changed. Principles and stuff.

    Traditionally, conservatives opposed ID laws. It was a point of pride, an example of American exceptionalism, that we did not have a national identification system, internal passports, and “Papier, bitte!“.

    nk (1d9030)

  73. From someone who understands how Trump thinks:

    As a narcissist, his imaginary world of self importance is 100% “true” to him. We’re all just refusing to go along and thus must be punished into line or his whole fairy tale of perfection will crash & burn. I worked with, and as the target of, a “Trump” for 4.5 years.

    This might complicate legal questions about whether Trump is deliberately doing wrong for his own benefit. But it simplifies the question of whether Trump should ever have been given so much power and responsibility.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  74. If you can show that absentee voting leads to higher error or fraud I’ll agree with you. Otherwise it’s a hypothetical concern.

    Clever.

    How about this: If you can show that in-person voting with voter ID is just as likely as universal mail in voting to provide a credibility hole that partisans can drive a truck through, I’ll come around to your position, whatever it is. You don’t seem to want to spell it out directly.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67) — 1/4/2021 @ 11:02 am

    I’m sorry I wasn’t being clear enough.

    UMIV: Yes, unless it’s shown to increase fraud.
    VID: Yes, If necessary, but with a cure process for those that need it.

    To me it’s analogous to some of the pointless actions the left has taken around guns; ‘assault weapons’ ban, gun show loop hole, waiting periods, all are hypothetically useful in reducing gun violence but there’s no data saying they results in reduced violence. So to me they look like an unnecessary limitation on personal liberty.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  75. How real conservatism has changed. Principles and stuff.

    Traditionally, conservatives opposed ID laws. It was a point of pride, an example of American exceptionalism, that we did not have a national identification system, internal passports, and “Papier, bitte!“.

    nk (1d9030) — 1/4/2021 @ 11:33 am

    Are you assuming a Trump supporter will think being associated with the Nazi are a bad thing?

    Time123 (6e0727)

  76. @76 — Yesterday a Trump fluffer tweeted that lefties are scared of fascism because fascists were historically the most valiant opponents of communism, and another Trump fluffer replied that since we’ve now been deprived of “the Trump we wanted” — i.e. a moderate fascist — we’ll consequently get a Pinochet instead.
    Then the Trumpers will say it’s all the fault of NeverTrump.

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  77. The photo ID nonsense predates Trump by at least two administrations. Bush 43 sealed the deal with Real ID in 2005. I don’t know what bothers me more — that a universal ID requirement is considered conservative or that Trump is considered conservative.

    nk (1d9030)

  78. @78, It’s about making it harder for people who aren’t likely to vote republican to vote. That’s the principle. Make it harder for Dem voters to cast the vote.

    FWIW, I firmly believe that Dem only care about voting rights because it helps them at polls. If the impacts flipped the positions would flip.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  79. It’s about making it harder for people who aren’t likely to vote republican to vote. That’s the principle. Make it harder for Dem voters to cast the vote

    Is that how you would reduce the pro voter ID arguments seen on this site over many years, which you can easily find by just searching for “Voter ID”?

    Is that what you think of the post I linked to @72?

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  80. Are you assuming a Trump supporter will think being associated with the Nazi are a bad thing?

    Time123 (6e0727) — 1/4/2021 @ 12:00 pm

    Remarks like this make it difficult to have a reasonable conversation. I know it’s fashionable to tar Trump supporters, but it doesn’t serve a purpose except to antagonize them and downgrade the discussion.

    Hopefully the 2 minutes of hate that has gone on for the past 4 years will end on the 20th.

    NJRob (bdbf11)

  81. NJRob, I let that stuff go. It’s a commentary on the source, which suits me fine.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  82. It’s about making it harder for people who aren’t likely to vote republican to vote. That’s the principle. Make it harder for Dem voters to cast the vote

    Is that how you would reduce the pro voter ID arguments seen on this site over many years, which you can easily find by just searching for “Voter ID”?

    No, it’s what i think the motivating source is for the GOP on this issue.

    Is that what you think of the post I linked to @72? beer ‘n pretzels (042d67) — 1/4/2021 @ 12:51 pm

    I didn’t follow the link.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  83. Are you assuming a Trump supporter will think being associated with the Nazi are a bad thing?

    Time123 (6e0727) — 1/4/2021 @ 12:00 pm

    Remarks like this make it difficult to have a reasonable conversation. I know it’s fashionable to tar Trump supporters, but it doesn’t serve a purpose except to antagonize them and downgrade the discussion.

    Hopefully the 2 minutes of hate that has gone on for the past 4 years will end on the 20th.

    NJRob (bdbf11) — 1/4/2021 @ 12:52 pm

    I was trying to be funny with a snarky comment. I’m sorry I offended you. I don’t think all Trump supporters are Nazi-Sympathizers as a general rule. I know, based on your many comments that you aren’t a Nazi sympathizers. I’ll refrain from these types of jokes in the future.

    Time123 (36651d)

  84. Meanwhile, Andy Corleone in NY is pushing through legislature to pass a bill that gives him the power to enslave the public and imprison them without due process on the mere fear that they might have come into contact with someone who may have the dreaded Wuhan Flu.

    NJRob (bdbf11)

  85. NJrob, Just to be very clear, I’m sorry that I insulted you. It wasn’t my intent to do so.

    Time123 (36651d)

  86. Wasn’t an insult directed at me. But it’s common refrain lately because it’s encouraged here. Feels more one note lately instead of the discussion that brought me to this place for near 2 decades.

    NJRob (bdbf11)

  87. @85 Have you considered that using that particular commentary style discourages people from engaging on your topic?

    Nic (896fdf)

  88. @87, again, it was intended as a joke and it’s clear you took it personally. I don’t mean to imply anything negative by saying that. It was a mean joke and I shouldn’t have made it.

    You mention discussion, I provided what I intended as a substantive response to you in my comment @22. You don’t owe me a response and I’m only bringing it up to point out that opportunities for discussion are still present here.

    FWIW, I agree with you that Patterico’s comment about you supporting evil was insulting and worth an apology. So if you’re less easy going about jokes then normal it’s understandable.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  89. RIP Murdock — expect more lawyers to bail. The district court for DC just announced that it was considering referring the attorney behind the Wisconsin Voters Assoc. v. Trump lawsuit for sanctions.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  90. We revoke citizenship to terrorists and others who wage war against the United States.

    No, you can’t suspend the 14th Amendment for criminals you don’t like.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  91. @91 I’m continually perplex that we would even WANT to revoke citizenship.

    You’d WANT these folks within our jurisdiction so that they *could* be easily prosecuted, if warranted.

    whembly (c30c83)

  92. You can’t revoke citizenship by birth, and you can only revoke a naturalized citizen if he was improperly naturalized (lying about having been a Nazi concentration camp guard, for example). What he does after a proper naturalization cannot be used to strip citizenship.

    norcal (b4d7b1)

  93. My 93 is based on my previous employment as an immigration officer. If there is a law to the contrary of my statement, I am unaware of it.

    I remember an ICE officer who wanted to denaturalize somebody who became a drug dealer after naturalization. Couldn’t do it.

    norcal (b4d7b1)

  94. @90-
    Hopefully.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  95. When did that employment end?

    One of the darker news stories of the Trump era had to do with people *in their 40s* who had believed themselves to be US citizens all of their lives who suddenly had their passport revoked because, unbeknownst to them, the doctor who signed their birth certificate had been convicted for forging certificates claiming American births for people who were born in Mexico — so suddenly *every* certificate he’d signed was disputed, and these people had to come up with *documentary evidence* proving their parents lived in the country when they were born, or their citizenship was revoked.

    This was horrifying to me; I couldn’t come up with documentary evidence that my mother was a citizen or lived in the country when I was born, if my birth certificate were suddenly called into a generalized dispute and therefore considered invalid.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  96. 2016, aphrael.

    Beware of immigration horror stories in the press. They often leave out important details that don’t cast favorable light on the person in question.

    Just because the government asks for “documentary evidence” doesn’t mean that destruction looms if the evidence is not provided. Many times something as simple as an affidavit is accepted as evidence. There are significant layers of administrative review and appeal before somebody can be denaturalized, and almost any unfavorable decision from the Board of Immigration Appeals can be appealed to the federal courts, up to and including the Supreme Court.

    In my career I saw countless cases of people who were in deportation proceedings, some with files measured in feet, not inches, who ended up getting relief.

    norcal (b4d7b1)

  97. You’d WANT these folks within our jurisdiction so that they *could* be easily prosecuted, if warranted.

    Exactly, and I’m guessing you can’t try a non-citizen for treason because he doesn’t have a country to betray.

    Paul Montagu (14e7ea)

  98. Time,

    There’s plenty of video and eyewitness testimony saying there were questionable acts happening in this election. Yet you won’t find a single post of mine saying the election was stolen. Why? Because no one knows as the evidence isn’t there. I do support further investigation though.

    NJRob (1e6085)

  99. There’s plenty of video and eyewitness testimony saying there were questionable acts happening in this election. Yet you won’t find a single post of mine saying the election was stolen. Why? Because no one knows as the evidence isn’t there. I do support further investigation though.

    No, there isn’t. Not even a shred of it.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  100. Time123 (6e0727) — 1/4/2021 @ 12:34 pm

    @78, It’s about making it harder for people who aren’t likely to vote republican to vote. That’s the principle. Make it harder for Dem voters to cast the vote.

    Would you believe that the House Republican leadership complained yesterday that Nancy Pelosi had made it too easy for Democrats to vote for her for Speaker?

    Here they had a couple of members quarantining themselves because of Covid, and no proxy voting because the House hadn’t yet re-adopted any rules, and there was therefore an outside chance Nancy Pelosi could lose the vote for Speaker, and look what she did:

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/pelosi-faces-narrow-margin-in-house-speaker-vote-11609675200

    Some lawmakers voted behind plexiglass because they had recently been exposed to the coronavirus, though they had tested negative for Covid-19. Rather than assemble at once, House lawmakers entered the chamber in small groups to allow for social-distancing measures.

    Republicans objected to the plexiglass structure, which they said Democrats surprised them with to allow Mrs. Pelosi to get more votes for speaker. Two Democrats and one Republican used it, at the direction of the House physician.

    “The lack of communication with the minority makes this 100% political,” said Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis, the top Republican on the House Administration Committee. “To build a structure like that, in the dark of night, to only protect the votes that Speaker Pelosi needs to get re-elected speaker, is shameful.”

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  101. Partisanship is so high, that Congress assembled on the default day given by the constitution (20th amendment , Section 2) even though it was a Sunday. The’d avoided that in the past – in non inauguration years, sometimes for two weeks)

    Democrats were afraid Trump might make some recess appointments according to the Wall Street Journal. Also they wanted more time in session before January 6.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  102. BuDuh moderated, his comment trashed. His comment was aggressively offensive and cited a person and a site with zero credibility on the election. My site will not be used for disinformation.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  103. From Andrew McCarthy, “The Risky Wager of Betting on Trump”:

    There is no separating the president from the presidency, in competence or character, and this is never truer than in times of crisis.

    Did he only just realize what used to be a core conservative belief? How did the Trumper elites expect a selfish nincompoop to deal with a national crisis?

    Radegunda (b6cc34)

  104. Better late than never, Radegunda.

    norcal (b4d7b1)

  105. I did not know this.

    Lincoln Project Ad Features Lin Wood Encouraging Republicans To Boycott Georgia Runoffs

    Lincoln Project co-founder Reed Galen told Politico in December that the group is “as much never-Republican as we are anything else.”

    Galen also said his group is coordinating with Fair Fight, the group founded by former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, Senate Majority PAC and other Democratic groups on how “we can be helpful to them either with [polling], staff support or financial support.”

    nk (1d9030)

  106. What happened to this site??? I’m truly appalled at the difference here in the couple years since I have not been here. (Accident, long recovery, exacerbated by Covid and not being able to access surgeries I need…wth?

    P. D. M. Burton (5d9e31)

  107. Time,

    There’s plenty of video and eyewitness testimony saying there were questionable acts happening in this election. Yet you won’t find a single post of mine saying the election was stolen. Why? Because no one knows as the evidence isn’t there. I do support further investigation though.

    NJRob (1e6085) — 1/4/2021 @ 5:53 pm

    I didn’t intend to say that you were claiming the election was stolen. I agree that there have been things that happened which are worth questioning and investigating. The election results in Antim County MI for example

    My frustration is that when those investigations are done Trump and his supporters refuse to accept the results, even when the determination is made i court by a judge Trump appointed.

    I’m further frustrated that the slim evidence is used to support a very bold claims which undermine our democracy and that those claims are never modified when the evidence changes. This leaves a perception in the minds of those that trust Trump that something has happened. At this point in time it hasn’t been shown that anything happened on a scale to influence the outcome of the election.

    I’m fine with more investigation. But your initial comment that we need to fix our election laws to reduce fraud doesn’t seem to be supported by what we’ve found so far.

    Time123 (89dfb2)

  108. What if Pence tries playing judge tomorrow with the power to declare a state’s electors void or something similar? Can the entire Congressional body overrule him? What is possible here?

    noel (5c4840)

  109. In the corridors of power, Pence is the broom closet. His only authority is to open the envelopes and give the Electoral College ballots to the respective tellers of the House and Senate who read them out, and to present objections if they are in writing and signed by a member of each chamber. All decisions are made by the two chambers voting separately.

    Here is something the Com-symps (Communist fellow travelers) will only tell you about Gore, but you will have to find out for yourself about Nixon. In 1960, Nixon as VP presided over his own defeat by JFK. Hawaii being Hawaii presented two slates of Electors both signed by its governor. The first was for Nixon from the original count, the second was for JFK from the recount. Nixon had the tellers read the slate for JFK.

    nk (1d9030)

  110. I expect him to say something like “in the opinion of the chair this slate of delegates is not recognized”. Is he violating the Constitution if he states his opinion?

    noel (5c4840)

  111. The body can always vote to overrule the chair. Let’s leave the chimeras to Bellerophon.

    nk (1d9030)

  112. What happened to this site??? I’m truly appalled at the difference here in the couple years since I have not been here. (Accident, long recovery, exacerbated by Covid and not being able to access surgeries I need…wth?

    Although I don’t recognize your name, I’m sorry about your accident and the COVID.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  113. “I expect him to say something like “in the opinion of the chair this slate of delegates is not recognized”. Is he violating the Constitution if he states his opinion?”

    His role is the same as the person opening the envelopes at the Academy Awards. He can say whatever he wants but he can’t change what’s happening.

    Davethulhu (95ea9f)

  114. Let’s leave the chimeras to Bellerophon

    That one almost ruined the franchise. Ya gotta let Cruise’ crew cruise.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  115. The US Constitution gives States authority over electoral elections with one caveat. State electoral election law must be made exclusively by State Legislatures. If any party other than the State Legislature is involved in creating Electoral election law then that election is unconstitutional and therefore invalid. If the electors were elected in an unconstitutional manner then an objection is required as representatives give oath to the Constitution, not their political party.

    US Constitution Article II Section 1

    Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress…

    It’s not rocket science, it’s in the US Constitution. Senators and representatives have objected to elected Electors in the past and it has not been an issue. In 2005 Barbara Boxer objected to the electors of Ohio for President Bush. In 2016 Maxine waters and 10 other representatives objected to electors, … Oh, shame on me only democrats are allowed to object to electors. If a Republican objects call them a bunch of names and accuse them of grievous wrongs.

    Violating the US Constitution in Electoral elections makes that election unconstitutional no matter who is running for president or how much you dislike him. It’s still unconstitutional and invalid and requires an objection.
    Also, the United States is republic not a democracy and while you’re at it “get off my lawn.”

    Tanny O'Haley (8a06bc)

  116. 112. nk (1d9030) — 1/5/2021 @ 6:42 am

    The body can always vote to overrule the chair.

    But there would still be a difference. According to the Electoral Count Act, both Houses must vote, separately, to reject (or to prefer) one state’s electoral votes i order to reject it – if it is a case of overruling the chair, both houses must accept it and if the Houses split, the chair prevails? Also there are rules for the debate – probably in the case of overruling the chair there would be no debate at all. I don’t know. What does Robert’s Rules of Order say?

    Mike Pence is letting Donald Trump down as gently as he can.

    Meanwhile, the Trump Adminitration continues some business. Jared Kushner, who appears to have ;earned something or other the last few years, seriously trying to do a job, is busy visiting countries and negotiating,Middle East peace agreements, or perhaps it would be better to say putting together a coalition against Iran, or perhaps they’re the same thing, just negotiated a peace agreement between Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

    I think they seriously expect Iran to strike, as it has promised, although not the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., neither today nor on January 20; or perhaps Trump is preparing to go out by destroying Iran’s nuclear program. Joe Biden was complaining a week ago his people were being properly briefed by Department of Defense officials. But this can only be a wild guess. What’s definite is that Jared Kushner is using the threat of Iran to make peace between all the other countries of the Middle East.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  117. The question of how exactly state law must be followed has been tested in court, and it would be fair to say that a state is presumed to have in mind that everything that can happen with a election to the state legislature or the Governor, is understood to be permissible in a popular vote for presidential electors. Or at least, if it doesn’t want that, it really has to be insistent and exclude the vote for Electors from the general rule(s) for elections in the state, however they are arrived at. And that’s better probably than what any of the judges have written.

    The truth is, there’s a certain amount of lacunae in the law at various places.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  118. Today Ted Cruz will object to Arizona, and Josh Hawley to Pennsylvania (probably on different grounnds – Hawley can use purely legal objections without alleging any fraud.)

    I guess Kelly Loeffler (still a Senator) will object to Georgia, and I can’t guess what will happen with Nevada, Wisconsin and Michigan. Ron Johnson doesn’t want to be one of the persons who signs an objection but may vote to uphold them. He’s probably looking for a way out. As is Ted Cruz. Their way out is some kind of inquiry.

    The defeat of Loeffler and probable defeat of Perdue will certainly make Mitch McConnell’s job easier, if it does nothing else.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  119. What happened to this site???

    Donald Trump happened.

    Dave (1bb933)

  120. After 4.5 years of slavish sycophancy to a deranged and evil man, it’s nice to see Mike Pence finally getting his reward.

    Dave (1bb933)

  121. Paul Montagu (77c694) — 1/4/2021 @ 8:56 am

    Put me in the column of “mildly surprised but in a good way” about Tom Cotton and long-time Trump defender Andrew McCarthy.

    I wasn;t surprised about Andrew McCarthy. He never was a defender of Trump qua Trump, although he did use some ad arguments.

    Tom cotton, in addition to his desire to be taken seriously, may have been a little bit shocked by the reaction to his New York Times op-ed piece about calling in the military to stop riots.

    But also, he’s probably looking a bit further ahead than Ted Cruz, and wants to rise in the leadership of the Senate rather than run for president like Ted Cruz, and expects Donald Trump’s claims to be deflated somewhat as time goes on, and maybe has more confidence in his ability to argue than Ted Cruz does.

    He used the standard “What if the other side did it?” argument that the ACLU does or used to. It’s easier than saying “your” side did it, and forgiveable.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)

  122. Off topic: Chine arrested dozens (53) of democracy activists in Hong Kong early Wednesday morning, Hong Kong time.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/hong-kong-police-arrest-dozens-of-opposition-politicians-over-alleged-subversion-11609895177

    Hong Kong’s Secretary for Security, John Lee, on Wednesday said those involved had…wanted to veto the government’s budget and oust the chief executive by obtaining 35 or more seats in the legislature, adding it was “an organized plan that would plunge Hong Kong into an abyss..”

    …John Clancey, an American and a lawyer at the Hong Kong law firm Ho Tse Wai & Partners, was taken away by police in the sweep, according to Albert Ho, the firm’s founder. Mr. Ho described Mr. Clancey, who is in his 70s, as a longtime human rights and public interest lawyer at the firm. He was also the treasurer of Power for Democracy, a pro-democratic group in the city.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-55555299

    If charged under the new national security law, the detainees could face life in prison.

    The BBC’s Danny Vincent in Hong Kong says the legislation has spread what activists call “white terror” across the city. It has all but silenced the street protest movement and led to a growing number of activists fleeing the territory.

    When authorities introduced the law, they claimed it would target only a small number of activists, but the wide-ranging nature of Wednesday’s operation has led many to fear the authorities are now trying to eliminate the entire opposition camp, he says.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/06/world/asia/china-hong-kong-arrests.html

    Within a few hours on Wednesday, the Hong Kong police had arrested 53 people, searched 76 places and frozen $200,000 of assets in connection with an informal primary for the pro-democracy camp — all under the auspices of Beijing’s new national security law. In one swoop, the authorities rounded up not only some of the most aggressive critics of the Hong Kong government but also little-known figures who had campaigned on far less political issues, in one of the most forceful shows of power in the Chinese Communist Party’s continuing crackdown on the city.

    The message was clear: Beijing is in charge.

    This is quite a violation of the handover agreement (which because it had an expiration date – 2047 – nobody could really have expected China to keep throughout its term.)

    Xi must be afraid of something to take such control of Hong Kong, more afraid of that than of a Cold War with the United States and others. There goes any hope for them of any favorable to them change in U.S. China policy under Biden. And they’ll do more.

    Sammy Finkelman (fac2c6)


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