Patterico's Pontifications

1/3/2023

GOP Will Vote For Speaker of the House Today (UPDATE)

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:18 am



[guest post by Dana]

Today is the day Kevin McCarthy finds out whether he is going to be the next speaker of the House. So far, there is a lot of drama behind the scenes as the GOP remains split over McCarthy, and he continues to struggle to secure enough votes:

House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy and his top supporters erupted at the dozen-plus conservative hardliners vowing to block his speaker bid in a closed-door meeting Tuesday, just hours before the vote.

In a fiery speech to his conference, McCarthy underscored the extensive concessions he has made to those who have vowed to oppose him, largely those in the House Freedom Caucus, according to multiple members in the room.

But he also told members that there are about 20 members who plan to vote against him, far more than the five who have publicly opposed him — underscoring the likely chaos that awaits the GOP as they seek to elect a speaker at noon.

I earned this job. We earned this majority, and God dammit we are going to win it today,” McCarthy said to a standing ovation, according to lawmakers in the room.

Likely Steve Scalise will be a candidate for the job if McCarthy fails to secure 218 votes. Currently, however, Scalise is supporting McCarthy’s bid for the job.

Anyway, let’s hear from a few Republican women expressing their frustration over the GOP’s family squabble:

P.S. While the House has now convened for a vote, what happensabout if things go awry:

If McCarthy doesn’t get the votes on the first ballot, there is the option to make a motion to adjourn, but it would take 218 votes to do that and Democrats are not likely inclined to help Republicans out in any way.

There is no playbook for what the chamber will do if the speaker isn’t elected on the first ballot. The 1923 vote was decided on the ninth ballot, where they kept voting until a speaker was decided. The 1869 speaker vote lasted through 60 ballots over the course of two months.

This Congress may recess the chamber, or they could continue voting.

But no other House business can be done until this vote is finished, including swearing in of the rest of the members. Until the speaker’s vote is decided, the clerk of the House is in charge of the chamber.

Keep you posted.

UPDATE: The House has adjourned after three ballots and still no speaker. The GOP continues to be fractured and unable to function as a cohesive body. For his part, after the second vote, McCarthy said he is in it to win:

“Remember how they all said they have this secret candidate? Their secret candidate nominated me, so where do they go now?” McCarthy said, referring to [Jim] Jordan. “This can’t be about that, you’re going to leverage somebody for your own personal gain.”

“I’m staying until we win,” McCarthy added. “It will eventually change.”

Stay tuned…

–Dana

226 Responses to “GOP Will Vote For Speaker of the House Today (UPDATE)”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (1225fc)

  2. The HFC sabotaged the 2017-2018 Congress, blocking many of Speaker Ryan’s bills and ensuring that Obamacare remained unchanged. Their best was the enemy of the party’s good. They probably see themselves as patriots defending some vision of the days of yore, but what they really are is an opposition party in GOP clothing.

    The real RINOs.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  3. McCarthy nominated for Speaker.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  4. They just completed a roll call.

    Dana (1225fc)

  5. Jeffries nominated for Speaker

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  6. Additional possible names for speaker:

    Lee Zeldin
    Tom Cole

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  7. This infighting over McCarthy speaks to a fractured GOP at large. I don’t know where it all ends. But if the party plans on prioritizing things like impeaching Biden and other “owns,” then that says it all.

    Dana (1225fc)

  8. Ah, Andy Biggs nominated too.

    Dana (1225fc)

  9. Andy Biggs, HFC member, nominated.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  10. This infighting over McCarthy speaks to a fractured GOP at large. I don’t know where it all ends.

    Maybe HFC quits the GOP and forms the MAGA Party.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  11. Roll call starting

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  12. GOP dissenters. Votes for Biggs and Jordan so far.

    Dana (1225fc)

  13. And the swamp creates breed…

    DCSCA (7751dc)

  14. ^creatures

    DCSCA (7751dc)

  15. Best line picked up by a mike: “The Big, bad, beautiful brotha from Brooklyn” …

    DCSCA (7751dc)

  16. McCarthy cannot win at this point.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  17. In the other chamber:

    Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) was elected Senate president pro tempore by unanimous consent, becoming the first woman to serve in the role, which is third in line to the presidency. The position has traditionally gone to the longest-serving senator of the party in power, but Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), 89, declined to run for the role last year.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  18. @17. No. WaPo is incorrect. Fourth:

    ‘The United States presidential line of succession is the order in which the vice president of the United States and other officers of the United States federal government assume the powers and duties of the U.S. presidency (or the office itself, in the instance of succession by the vice president) upon an elected president’s death, resignation, removal from office, or incapacity. The order of succession specifies that the office passes to the vice president; if the vice presidency is simultaneously vacant, or if the vice president is also incapacitated, the powers and duties of the presidency pass to the speaker of the House of Representatives, president pro tempore of the Senate, and then Cabinet secretaries, depending on eligibility.’

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_line_of_succession

    DCSCA (d69388)

  19. @18: no, it’s third. The President is NOT “in line”

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  20. Hakim Jeffries will get the plurality in the first ballot. 19 votes so far for challengers.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  21. @19. OIC- right.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  22. Cantor, Ryan… and now McCarthy… last of the boastful ‘Young Guns’… looks like he’s heading to the top of Boot Hill, not Capitol Hill.

    Swamp creatures feed on their young in the castle moat. Seems you don’t have to be a House member to be elected Speaker…

    So nominate DeSantis… or Trump. Now that would be a ‘litmus test’ for a POTUS run. 😉

    DCSCA (d69388)

  23. Kevin McCarthy has made history (not the kind he wanted), for the first time in 100 years the election of a Speaker will go to (at least) a second ballot:

    There have been 14 instances of Speaker elections requiring multiple ballots (the records for the 2nd Congress, 1791–1793, are inconclusive, and the House has filled vacancies in the Speakership three times using a resolution). Thirteen of 14 multiple-ballot elections occurred before the Civil War, when party divisions were more nebulous. The last time a Speaker election required two or more votes on the floor happened in 1923.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  24. Ultimately, the House GOP will be useless in 2023-2024. McCarthy is so flexible in his principles, that it might as well be Jum Jordan or his ilk as Speaker. (My 2022 self would not have minded Trump, but my 2023 self sees him as beginning to fade, and I don’t want to arrest the process.)

    I hate the dynamic that makes a small majority have to constantly appease its extereme wing. Given the actual vote — there was a cry for moderation, not the antics of Jim Jordan and his fllows.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  25. I feel like I should have a preference and the alternative of them all losing also seems problematic. This is a pickle.

    frosty (fd5c57)

  26. #22

    I don’t disagree with your assessment of McCarthy as a swamp creature. Thing is — he is so wedded to his ambition that he’s likely a wethervane for what the extreme wing wants. Any other candidate will likely be a Paul Ryan or someone with too much gumption to yield to every idiocy from the far right.

    If the Freedom Caucus were smart — they’d say OK now and maybe get McCarthy later if he looks like he might go squishy on the debt limit or something.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  27. #25

    I feel your pain.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  28. @24. What ‘principles?’ Piss on ‘principles’… castles get stormed because both these political parties, which the majority of voters- indies, are not affiliated with any longer– have deeply damaged America, rigged the system for themselves, repeatedly betrayed voter trust and so befouled the U.S. for the past 60 years they deserved to be tossed into the moat.

    When Fox News labels this ‘an unmitigated disaster’ for Kevin McCarthy, that says it all.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  29. From the Weekend Open Thread:

    503,

    The link hits a paywall so I’ll ask; is it an effort to blame all vaccines or one specific vaccine? If it’s the later do you consider the text you included with the link in your comment to be an honest summary of that?

    frosty (fd5c57) — 1/3/2023 @ 9:50 am

    Here is a free link.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 1/3/2023 @ 10:19 am

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  30. GOP votes received:

    McCarthy 103
    Biggs 10
    Jordan 6
    Banks 1
    Seldom 1
    Donald 1

    Dana (1225fc)

  31. So, was the first ballot denial simply a counting coup?

    Do McCarthy’s concessions still stand, or were they only valid for the first ballot?

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  32. @30. No. And the WSJ opinion page is certainly not the source of any definition.

    It’s Royalists vs. Populists.

    The pattern is clear- and McCarthy’s Hindenburg demise this day is just another chapter along w/castles storms and Trump’s election and so on…

    The next speaker must be an outsider- a populist.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  33. @32. Watching the Royalists joust is a joy. He’s had months, if not years- to get his ducks in a line. He’s just another go along to get along party hack– a party fewer and fewer Americans have any affiliation with anymore.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  34. #33

    Won’t be, though…

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  35. #33 The last time the Freedom Caucus pulled this they gave themseves Paul Ryan. Maybe they’ll raly around Stefanik this time.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  36. @35. Then they’ll keep pouring gasoline on themselves and striking the match that fuels the very populism working against them.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  37. McCarthy will lose the second ballot. And Jeffries keeps getting a higher vote count in each cycle.

    The Hindenburg and the Titanic in one morning.

    Pick a populist.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  38. A few observations

    A. Nancy Pelosi faced off against the Squad. Say what you will about Ms Pelosi and the Democrat House Whip, but they got the Squad in line where it counted. That is important for a Speaker and Whip. If McCarthy can’t do the job to a similar high level, maybe he should not be Speaker and maybe they need a new Whip as well.

    B. Matt Gaetz is/was not 100% wrong when he noted that the GOP house has been going into some hearings, some negotiations, and getting skunked. He he seems to think their culture is one of starting from the standpoint of losing being inevitable. Regardless to how I feel about Gaetz, his criticism, properly applied, has some merit. Again, is McCarthy the best person for the job?

    C. Santos. A bit off topic, but peripherally, he is taking a bit of the focus off the Speaker drama. I’ll go out on a limb and say via my xray vision into the evil soul, that Santos is in the bottom 10% of losers in the House.
    I rank him at VP Harris’ favorite number, 420.

    steveg (92dc4d)

  39. There will be a party split before they vote for MAGA. And, really, Stefanik is no more principled than McCarthy. She just followed the wind from Vichy better.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  40. McCarthy will lose the second ballot.

    Yes.

    And Jeffries keeps getting a higher vote count in each cycle.

    Hunh? Some Republican voted for him?

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  41. Although Democrats seem to be good at finding extra votes.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  42. @40. The party is MAGA. The entrenched Royalists know it, fear it— and won’t accept it. Hence populism flourishes and the ranks of the indies grow. These are stale old weenies are on rollers in Apu’s Quiky-Mart.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  43. #40 — Who said she was? She’s just a possibility because she’s willing to sell her soul, but the GOP moderates might remember her as a moderate.

    At this point, DCSCA may not be wrong. It needs to be somebody, and I don’t see any true believing populist doing anything much different than arch-cowardly swamp creature McCarthy.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  44. I can see it being Scalise, but it won’t be Jim Jordan or Andy Biggs. There are probably 50 GOP members who won’t vote for them.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  45. Wild thought: Nikki Haley. Miss GOP Intersectionality.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  46. @44. Except scoring a MAGA-styled Trumpian win. The quicker one of these parties recognizes where the vast majority of the electorate is– independent– the better. It’s chaos like this that keeps Xi grinning, Putin smiling… the Taliban laughing and Kim firing off missiles.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  47. Independents are not Trump supporters in general. They are “a pox on all you wingnuts” voters.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  48. @48. Donald Trump has support of surprising number of Independents, Democrats

    https://www.foxnews.com/politics/donald-trump-has-support-of-surprising-number-of-independents-democrats

    It’s not so much Trump himself, but the populist push– the next populist carrying the bsnner will get their backing as well.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  49. #47

    Of course, Trump has been supporting McCarthy.

    The proof here is how the GOP with a populist leader, would attempt to run the House. Gingrich played the let’s shut down the government game, and paid a price for it. Seems like the current batch of populists are determined to play the same silly sport.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  50. Meh.

    Wanna look at out sausages gets made behind the scenes? It’s like this.

    Frankly, the HFC caucus are being silly imo. The *only* role for House GOP for the next two years is to say “No” to Biden and Democrat lead Senate.

    House GOP isn’t going to get many, if at all, concessions from Democrats. So, the best thing is to say “no”, and force Democrats to the table.

    Can McCarthy do that? I dunno. But, I don’t see anyone else either.

    whembly (d116f3)

  51. Gingrich played the let’s shut down the government game, and paid a price for it. Seems like the current batch of populists are determined to play the same silly sport.

    Newtie’s stale bread- part of the problem seeded from 35 years ago; his quote of the day:

    “I don’t understand what’s going on here.”

    And his frigging party won the majority. Populists have had it; it’s not about ‘ideology’ but trust. And the Royalists on al lsides have betrayed it for the last time. Two votes and two losses. This is figuratvely not disimmilar to storming the castle two years ago. It’s all the same populist pattern.

    DCSCA (d69388)

  52. Whembly, what you’re saying makes sense. But if you’re a conspiracy theorist grifter HFC member you want lots of opportunities to create viral moments you can use to fundraise and prevent a primary challenge from the right.

    Impeach Biden
    Hunter Biden’s laptop
    Investigate Nancy Pelosi’s role in January 6
    Investigate the FBI
    Investigate 2020 voter fraud by Hugo Chavez’s ghost

    If you’re sane member of the GOP (or have a competitive district) you want little to none of that because of the impact on your general election.

    So there’s some conflict there.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  53. Seems like the current batch of populists are determined to play the same silly sport.

    No, they want to force a debt default. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  54. I favor impeaching Hunter Biden and/or his laptop

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  55. @51. This isn’t sausage making. There’s a recipe for that.

    This is a plane crash; a train wreck; a zeppelin exploding; a parties of cows sent wandering through a minefield in Normandy, circa 1944. These two major parties, as currently structured; and who’ve rigged the system from the local level up for decades, have to go- if the country is to remain relevant and functional on the world stage. It certainly isn’t projecting the look of a ‘global policeman’ when it can’t administer order in their own ‘House.’

    DCSCA (701c07)

  56. IF McCarthy withdraws, Scalise is the next choice. I guess they could go the Stefanik, but by that point they will be at an impasse.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  57. Democrats should vote for jim jordan for speaker along with 19 republicans that would make things interesting as mr. Spock says! does anyone know what mccarthy stands for besides being speaker at all costs? Maybe he can make a deal for votes from the democrats!

    asset (7ec37e)

  58. DCSCA,

    If Newt does something back in the 90s, and it failed. And Jim Jordan’s group does the same thing in the 2020s (after multiple people, including Schumer, have failed at the same gambit), then it’s either stupidity or madness.

    History does teach us lessons. Whether we learn them or apply confirmaton bias to ignore them or recharactarize them is — a function of judgment, or in the case of the FC, stupidity or madness.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  59. then it’s either stupidity or madness.

    Yes, theirs; and it what the electorate is done with and why castles get stormed. Say hello to what has fed and rooted populism for 50 years. The electorate has had it w/the betrayals and lies… these two party structures have to go.

    DCSCA (701c07)

  60. GOP vote:

    McCarthy 203
    Jordan 19

    Dana (1225fc)

  61. IF McCarthy withdraws, Scalise is the next choice.

    “Second verse; same as the first-” [a little bit louder and a little bit worse…]

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GisCRxREDkY

    ‘I’m Henry the Eighth I am…’

    DCSCA (701c07)

  62. A third vote. Congress exhibited insanity last week w/t Omnibus bill. Today, they’re defining it.

    Storm the castle.

    DCSCA (701c07)

  63. A third ballot doesn’t bode well for McCarthy.

    Dana (1225fc)

  64. Mike Lindell.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  65. Maybe the Republicans should adopt ranked choice voting.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  66. 60

    What must happen and what will happen are two different things. I don’t see the revolution happening today. We will have a Speaker (heaven knows who) sometime in the next few weeks. And the “populists” will make an effort to shut down the government in 2023 via the debt limit.

    That might bring the revolution, if they keep at it long enough. Pro Tip — that revolution will not benfit the Populist faction.

    Appalled (7f0c63)

  67. @64. He’s losing it.

    @66. Maybe the Republicans should adopt ranked choice voting.

    Maybe they should stop showering in gasoline and smoking cigars at the same time.

    DCSCA (701c07)

  68. I don’t see the revolution happening today.

    It’s already well underway. Castles stormed, a populist POTUS– swelling numbers of indies…

    DCSCA (701c07)

  69. @67.

    Pro Tip: revolution IS the Populist faction– and history has shown it benefits them when a major party champions their key issues, enacts changes, quashes the unrest and absorbs the change. So far, these two parties are late to the fire — and the octogenarians clinging to power, leading them, are part of the problem.

    DCSCA (701c07)

  70. From https://ballotpedia.org/Partisan_affiliations_of_registered_voters

    “As of October 2022, 48 million registered voters in these areas identified themselves as Democrats. At 38.78%, Democrats represented the single largest share of registered voters in the states and territories that allow voters to indicate partisan affiliation on their registration forms.
    A total of 36.4 million registered voters identified themselves as Republicans, representing 29.42% of registered voters in these areas.
    A total of 35.3 million registered voters identified themselves as independents or unaffiliated with any political party. This amounted to 28.55% of registered voters in these areas.
    Approximately 4 million registered voters identified themselves as members of other political parties. This amounted to 3.25% of registered voters in these areas.”

    How is 35.3M > 48M + 36.4M? Storm the math classroom!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  71. any pointers to what Boebert was referring to that she claims McCarthy shot down?

    frosty (ddaeb7)

  72. The Royalists at play… another wasted day at America’s expense.

    These two parties have to go.

    Storm the castle.

    DCSCA (759c75)

  73. This:

    This once-in-a-century humiliation of a party’s nominee for Speaker is chickens coming home to roost for McCarthy, who whitewashed right-wing insurrectionism on the House floor. Nobody’s getting killed now, but the House GOP now sleeps in the bed they made with Trump and Bannon.

    Dana (122eaa)

  74. Three strikes- his tally worsened; he’s out. They’ve adjourned until tomorrow. Another wasted day Americans have to pay for.

    DCSCA (759c75)

  75. Scalise should be Speaker over a terrible leader like McCarthy.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  76. R.I.P. Walt Cunningham, 90, Apollo 7 astronaut

    ‘Cunningham was one of three astronauts aboard the 1968 Apollo 7 mission, an 11-day spaceflight that beamed live television broadcasts as they orbited Earth, paving the way for the moon landing less than a year later. Cunningham, then a civilian, crewed the mission with Navy Capt. Walter M. Schirra and Donn F. Eisele, an Air Force major. Cunningham was the lunar module pilot on the space flight, which launched from Cape Kennedy Air Force Station, Florida, on Oct. 11 and splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean south of Bermuda. NASA said Cunningham, Eisele and Schirra’ flew a near perfect mission. Their spacecraft performed so well that the agency sent the next crew, Apollo 8, to orbit the moon as a prelude to the Apollo 11 moon landing in July 1969. The Apollo 7 astronauts also won a special Emmy award for their daily television reports from orbit, during which they clowned around, held up humorous signs for broadcast worldwide view [‘From the Apollo Room high atop everything… ‘Keep Those Cards And Letters Coming In, Folks’ and the very ‘in’ joke of the era- ‘Deke, are you a turtle?’– the proper response could not be broadcast on TV, hence Deke had to buy a round of drinks.] The Emmy was for educating earthlings about space flight.’ -AP.com

    Out of the ashes of the January, 1967 Apollo 1 fire rose Apollo 7 in October, 1968 … a soaring success, though Walt and Donn suffered the slings and arrows due to the natural, irritable attitude generated by Wally’s in-flight head cold. Schirra, on his third flight, had previously announced it would be his last. But the public ‘mutiny’ on orbit- particularly w/t late flight director, Glynn Lunney, fueled manager Chris Kraft’s wrath, per his memoir, to make sure neither Cunningham nor Eisele ever flew again.

    Ad Astra, Walt. You did America proud hen the manned space program needed it most, back in the day when it was truly, truly great.

    DCSCA (759c75)

  77. McCarthy fails in marathon votes for speaker, House adjourns.

    Unable to elect Republican leader Kevin McCarthy as the new House speaker Tuesday, the Republicans adjourned for the day in disarray as the party tries to regroup from his a historic defeat after a long, messy start for the new Congress.

    The surprise move end to Day One shows there is no easy way out for McCarthy whose effort to claim the gavel collapsed to opposition from conservatives. Needing 218 votes in the full House, McCarthy got just 203 in two rounds — less even than Democrat Hakeem Jeffries in the GOP-controlled chamber. A third ballot was even worse, with McCarthy losing 20 votes as night fell on the new House GOP majority, tensions rising as all other business came to a halt.
    ………

    Isn’t one definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  78. Scalise should be Speaker over a terrible leader like McCarthy.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7) — 1/3/2023 @ 2:43 pm

    To the House 19, Scalise is no different than McCarthy.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  79. Every one wants to shut the other team down.
    The Democrats shut Trump down their way, which used lawfare to do the heavy lifting part of their combined arms offensive.
    It was a winner because it was easy to portray Trump as a lying buffoon, because, well….

    Gingrich tossed monkey wrenches into the gears and announced it, which remains a mistake. America evidently preferred the obstructionists be a bit more subtle

    steveg (d46d56)

  80. Bradley Moss:

    McCarthy sold his soul for nothing

    To the House 19, Scalise is no different than McCarthy.

    Which says more about the House 19 than Scalise, no? Scalise has been a reliable Trump supporter without humiliating himself like McCarthy.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  81. That might bring the revolution, if they keep at it long enough. Pro Tip — that revolution will not benfit the Populist faction.

    Here’s the other Pro Tip: Populist politicians eventually find out that the Populists have put down the torches and pitchforks and gone home. Populism is a necessary corrective, but does not persist. It may recur if no changes are made, but it just cannot be sustained.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  82. Paul, who do you see being the “best” potential speaker? I’m somewhat indifferent and only have a list of NOTS.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  83. To the House 19, Scalise is no different than McCarthy.

    But they have to realize that all they can get are scalps. Jim Jordon will not be speaker. Scalise is about as conservative as one can get and not froth at the mouth, he’s checked all the Trumpian boxes, and electing him is natural if McCarthy can’t pull it off.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  84. America evidently preferred the obstructionists be a bit more subtle

    When these two major parties control and rig a system from the local level up and offer voters a choice between trash or garbage, it’s time to send them both to the landfill. The parties are the problem.

    DCSCA (652014)

  85. GOP Will Vote For Speaker of the House Today

    And vote, and vote, and vote, and ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  86. Update added to post.

    Dana (1225fc)

  87. Appalled — I think it’s more likely than not that the US will default on its debt this year.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  88. McCarthy sold his soul for nothing

    Last ‘Young Gun’ Shoots Blanks

    Film at 11.

    DCSCA (961658)

  89. Paul, who do you see being the “best” potential speaker?

    Liz Cheney, by a mile, but it would take every Democrat vote and five GOP crossovers. Absent that, Scalise will do, and he has a more realistic shot.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  90. Well, one thing is answered. This is not just a protest, it’s a clear statement that 20 purported GOP Congressfolk will NOT vote for McCarthy.

    At some point someone has to back off. I think it will be McCarthy.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  91. Raskin is whistling past the graveyard— he has been part of the problem. It’s deliberate naivety or just inside the bubble echoing to believe his party is immune to the wrath of the swelling ranks of American populism. His very comments only root it deeper.

    DCSCA (961658)

  92. aphrael,

    It would take almost all the GOP House members to cause a default, and the consequences of that are so enormously bad that it would be the end of the Republican Party.

    The world’s money is BASED on the inviolability of the US debt. The fallout would make the 2008 market crash look like the good old days.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  93. I’m pretty sure that the administration’s response would be to ignore the debt limit.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  94. @92. Agree. He’s damaged good now forever. On the Denny’s breakfast menu along w/t Daughter Darth Special:

    Toast. With a side order of toast.

    DCSCA (961658)

  95. This:
    Dana (122eaa) — 1/3/2023 @ 2:22 pm

    Let’s all marvel at what a 2016 election denier has to say about this.

    JF (80c307)

  96. BTW, I suspect McCarthy wouldn’t be facing this embarrassing situation had Trump made a strong push for him instead of waffling the way he’s doing now.
    Why isn’t the leader of the GOP doing what a leader should do? But it doesn’t change with this guy. He demands loyalty from the McCarthy and other GOPers but gives none in return.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  97. Appalled — I think it’s more likely than not that the US will default on its debt this year.

    aphrael (4c4719) — 1/3/2023 @ 3:48 pm

    I doubt it, as it would shift the blame of the collapsing economy from Biden to the Republicans.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  98. I’m pretty sure that the administration’s response would be to ignore the debt limit.

    Kevin M (1ea396) — 1/3/2023 @ 4:04 pm

    I doubt that too. Ignoring the debt ceiling, a law passed by Congress and signed by the President, would certainly be challenged by someone in court and would also be an impeachable offense.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  99. Thanks for telling me the opinions of radical leftists like Raskin. I can sleep better at night knowing what he thinks.

    NJRob (95e440)

  100. It doesn’t matter to me of Raskin is left or right- I agree with his statement. Exactly what isn’t true about it?

    This once-in-a-century humiliation of a party’s nominee for Speaker is chickens coming home to roost for McCarthy, who whitewashed right-wing insurrectionism on the House floor. Nobody’s getting killed now, but the House GOP now sleeps in the bed they made with Trump and Bannon.

    The thing is, Democrats can make accurate observations, and Republicans can make inaccurate observations. Obviously, the opposite of that is true too. I can’t imagine reflexively assuming that what Republicans say is golden, and what Democrats say is worthless. What a blinkered way to view people/politics.

    Dana (1225fc)

  101. @98. Not really. CNN- never a Trump fan, just reported not 5 monutes ago Trump gave McCarthy a ‘tepid’ endorsement in December- w/t phrase, ‘He deserves a shot at it…’ ”

    “Look, I think this Kevin has worked very hard,” Trump said during the interview. “I think he deserves the shot. Hopefully, he’s going to be very strong and going to be very good and he’s going to do what everybody wants.” -insider.cpm

    Trump appears to be on the fence about Kevin McCarthy endorsement, says ‘we’ll see what happens’ after 3 failed rounds of votes for House speaker

    ‘”We’ll see what happens,” Trump told NBC News on Tuesday. “I got everybody calling me wanting my support. We’ll see how it all works out.” – Businessinsider.com

    Remember Trump’s favorite movie is: ‘Patton’. It’s his party– and he’s already cutting McCarthy adrift.

    “Americans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser. Americans play to win all the time.”- G.S. Patton [George C. Scott] ‘Patton’ 1970

    DCSCA (961658)

  102. Cutting McCarthy Loose:

    Former President Donald Trump declined to say if he would stand by his endorsement of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who failed to be elected House speaker Tuesday after three rounds of voting.
    ……..
    Trump endorsed McCarthy’s speaker bid and refused to commit to him during a brief interview with NBC News senior Capitol Hill correspondent Garrett Haake Tuesday evening. Haake reported:

    EXCLUSIVE: Former President Trump declined to say if he’s sticking by his endorsement of Kevin McCarthy for speaker tonight, telling me in a brief phone interview he’s had calls all day asking for support, and “We’ll see what happens. We’ll see how it all works out.”

    When I asked directly if he was sticking by McCarthy, who did not clinch the gavel today after three floor votes, Mr. Trump told me “we’ll see what happens,” and ended our conversation.

    Trump has been accused in the past of showing no loyalty to many who have bet their political careers on him. ……
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  103. Portending the Future?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  104. McCarthy’s proposed House Rules package.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  105. Dana (1225fc) — 1/3/2023 @ 4:27 pm

    LOL I didn’t criticize Raskin for being left or right.

    I criticized him for being an election denier, and hilariously being held up a source of wisdom on election denialism.

    JF (80c307)

  106. Dan McLaughlin, who should pass Rob’s Tribal Litmus Test…

    Trump can’t even stand by his own endorsements. He’s a follower, no longer any sort of leader.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  107. This disasterous mess is all on McCarthy. He stepped in it back in 2015, too. He’s not a bright bulb. Just another swamper that has to ‘go along to get along’ w/t rest of the bums on both sides of the aisle as is the 80-plus year old swamper-in-chief- and the berobed bureaucrats who can’t find a leaker in a year… America looks likev world class sucker bait to the rest of the world. Xi know it; Vlad knows it. The Taliban see it… the Europeans and Ukrainians milk it for every buck they can score; and Kim keeps firing missiles.

    DCSCA (961658)

  108. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 1/3/2023 @ 4:38 pm

    No Republican elected with Democratic votes would survive very long. If Republican moderates voted for Jefferies it would be called “bipartisan,” if Democrats voted for a Republican moderate the new Speaker would be called a “traitor” and commit political suicide.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  109. I like how Rip responds to his own spam.

    JF (80c307)

  110. @110. As long as Pelosi is there in the House, he’d be her puppet anyway. McCarthy has had month… even years to get his ducks in a row on this. Populism has won the day.

    DCSCA (961658)

  111. Trump can’t even stand by his own endorsements. He’s a follower, no longer any sort of leader.

    Yup. McCarthy should have known two years ago that a full moon is a waning moon.

    Even if Donald “But you like me, right?” Trump had the strength of character to stick his neck out for McCarthy, he no longer has the political muscle. The newly-elected Freedom Caucus knows he’s now deadwood and will tell him to go peddle his NFTs.

    nk (ad2e09)

  112. @110, Rip, you have that pretty much dead on. The GOP is pretty sensitive to slights and betrayals right now.

    Time123 (3954fb)

  113. McCarthy’s day was more embarrassing than this.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  114. Paul Montagu (8f0dc7) — 1/3/2023 @ 5:15 pm

    LOL!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  115. @114. I doubt any Democrat who crossed over to vote for a Republican would be treated any more kindly by the Left.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  116. I wasn’t responding to you, JF, but to NJRob.

    Dana (1225fc)

  117. Low Expectations for the new Congress:

    ………
    Just 18% of Americans expect that GOP control of the House will change Washington for the better. Another 21% say it will change for the worse, but just over half (51%) say much won’t change because of the switch in House leadership…….
    ……..
    Just 36% of the public thinks it is at least somewhat likely that the new Congress will enact policies to help the middle class. …..

    Furthermore, about 7 in 10 Americans say neither political party is paying enough attention to everyday economic issues that affect people like them – 71% say this about the Republican Party and 68% for the Democratic Party. Overall, 26% of the public approves of the job the U.S. Congress is doing while 62% disapprove. …….

    Turning to the White House, 42% approve of the overall job Biden is doing as president while 50% disapprove. ……

    None of the current party leaders in Congress earn positive ratings among the American public, although the Democrats do better among fellow partisans than the Republicans. Outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi earns a negative 29% approve and 49% disapprove rating from all American adults, but gets an overwhelmingly favorable 69%–10% rating from Democrats. GOP Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who is hoping to succeed Pelosi in the Speaker’s chair, earns an overall negative rating of 12% approve and 34% disapprove, which includes a nominally net positive rating of 29% approve and 20% disapprove among his fellow Republicans. …….
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  118. @114. I doubt any Democrat who crossed over to vote for a Republican would be treated any more kindly by the Left.

    lurker (cd7cd4) — 1/3/2023 @ 5:17 pm

    Possibly at large in the country, but I think in Congress it would be different. Republican backbenchers would scorn any committee assignments from a Speaker elected with Democratic votes, but Democrat backbenchers wouldn’t have the same reaction as their Republican colleagues, since it would be a de facto power sharing arrangement where they benefit.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  119. All but two McCarthy defectors in House are election deniers
    …….
    Of the 18 deniers, 14 are returning members who voted against certification of the electoral college count on Jan. 6, 2021. In addition, four election-denying newcomers either expressed support for that vote, embraced partisan post-election audits or promoted false claims of 2020 election fraud.
    ……
    McCarthy (R-Calif.) himself embraced false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from Trump. So did Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who received votes from the 20 defectors on the third ballot.

    The two Republicans voting against McCarthy who are not deniers are Chip Roy of Texas, the only returning member in the group who did not oppose the certification of President Biden’s victory; and Josh Brecheen of Oklahoma, a newcomer to the House.
    ……..
    ……….The (175 election deniers who won their races) represents a sizable increase over the previous Congress, when 139 House Republicans voted against the electoral college count following the assault on the U.S. Capitol.
    #########

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  120. A Congress that doesn’t read legislation before passsing w/leaders dumb as rocks; a POTUS who can’t walk, talk or think straight and a bench full of judges who can’t keep track of their own paperwork. This country is crying out for competency. Pull this crap in the private sector and you’re fired. And these two parties keep selling the people steaming piles of poop.

    They’ve got to go.

    DCSCA (fae435)

  121. The Florida Man has a point, and a clear message. It quite something that this Hair Do is going to upend McCarthy’s ambitions. Mr. French

    As Brendan Buck wrote yesterday in the New York Times, it’s been 100 years since the House failed to elect a speaker on the first vote. So we’re watching history.

    It’s not the good kind of history to watch, however. It would be one thing if the dispute blocking Kevn McCarthy’s ascension to power centered around competing Republican visions for directing the House and governing the United States. As readers know, there are profound ideological differences within the GOP, and a debate over policy and ideology is well worth having.

    But that’s not what’s happening here. Instead, it’s an unserious fight with serious consequences. McCarthy is getting exactly what he deserves. After January 6, he failed to lead. Instead, he swallowed what was left of his pride and traveled down to Mar-a-Lago to make amends with Donald Trump.

    Yet he’s not being punished for that grotesque capitulation. Instead he’s facing yet another act of “burn it down” disruption from many of the same figures—including Matt Gaetz, Paul Gosar, and Lauren Boebert—who’ve built their entire brands around trolling, rage, and rebellion.

    It’s possible that GOP obstruction will yield a better speaker. One can hope. But a hope is not a plan, and it seems that the “plan” is to simply block McCarthy and see what happens.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  122. But a hope is not a plan

    It seemed like such a good idea back when anyone was better than DT

    frosty (5da517)

  123. But frosty, everybody running was….

    Nate (1f1d55)

  124. and would also be an impeachable offense.

    That’s a joke, right?

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  125. MY solution: The 10% that block the 90% are not Republicans. Give them an ultimatum of “vote for our guy or gtfo.” I’m all for a party split here.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  126. French is irrelevant; a flea brushed out of the tail that no longer wags the dog– and certainly not a go-to pundit on the GOP as a never-trumper who abandoned his party’s nominee and backed Biden.

    This mess is all on McCarthy. He’s the last of the three, swampy, poop-shoveling ‘young guns’ — shooting blanks. He should have had his ducks in a line months, if not years ago.

    He blew it. THREE times today– and by the third vote, he lost ground.

    DCSCA (910815)

  127. French is irrelevant

    I’ll probably regret this, but what do you even mean, “irrelevant?” How are you defining relevance? Relevant to what? Who do you think is relevant?

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  128. Oh, lurker, you’re so funny.

    Irrelevant means he disagrees with DCSCA.

    norcal (862cdb)

  129. If that’s the definition I’ll have to admit French is irrelevant. But I’ll let DCSCA speak for himself.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  130. 129,

    This is the same French that’s in favor of censorship by redefining it as government officials having a 1st amendment right to tell private companies what to do? Also the same French that argued for vaccine mandates? The same French that lectures people on how their religion means they should do what he says?

    Yea, he’s relevant if only for signaling he provides.

    frosty (08e3d2)

  131. MY solution: The 10% that block the 90% are not Republicans. Give them an ultimatum of “vote for our guy or gtfo.” I’m all for a party split here.

    Kevin M (1ea396) — 1/3/2023 @ 9:36 pm

    If McCarthy can’t even wrangle his own party into line, how is he going to go toe-to-toe with Hakeem Jeffries and Chuck Schumer, or refute the relentless propaganda of the DNC-voting DC press corps on a daily basis?

    The irony is that what the Freedom Caucus is demanding from a policy standpoint is mostly quite reasonable (a balanced budget, floor amendments, increased immigration enforcement, and a public 2/3 vote on all earmarks? Sounds great!), even if the legislative proposals don’t have a hope in hell of making it past the Senate. However, it’s quite useful at showing how ineffectual the GOPe is when it comes to sticking their neck out on basic policies that shouldn’t be at all controversial for even fiscal conservatives who won’t touch social issues with a ten-foot pole.

    McCarthy is being a stubborn ass here and not agreeing on a single one of what are very reasonable proposals because he thinks it shows he’s in charge, but all he’s showing is how ineffectual he would likely be as a Speaker in advocating and selling the GOP’s agenda, suffering the same eventual fate as Paul Ryan.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  132. @129. Bottom of the deckers routinely are. And now that he’s been hired by the NYT, all the more so to the party he abandoned:

    https://www.nytco.com/press/david-french-joins-the-times-as-an-opinion-columnist/

    Or ask Bill Kristol. He’s irrelevant, too. As is Newtie, who whistled past the graveyard tonight, too:

    “This is not a disaster.”- Newt Gingrich, Moon President

    DCSCA (0d402e)

  133. @129. You’re begging the question. It’s not censorship when the government official is non-coercively exercising their First Amendment right of expression. Whether and when the speech is coercive is a case-by-case factual question.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  134. @134. I asked a straightforward question. Would answering it be that hard?

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  135. 133,

    You’ll hear people advocating for things that are basically some version of letting the D’s move their agenda. But don’t be mean or insulting by pointing that out or calling them RINOs. No, the true RINOs are the ones not getting along with the D’s or finding “bi-partisan compromise” and they’ve got no reason to complain about being called that. Those dirty low down floor flushing barn rodents should be glad they’re allowed to vote. They need to vote like they’re told and stop gumming up the works.

    I do disagree about the GOPe being ineffectual though. They are very effective. Trillion dollar spending bills don’t pass themselves. Not when the #1 priority for the GOPe is UKR.

    frosty (f3184e)

  136. 135,

    French, and the people in favor of censorship, are the only ones trying to reframe what’s been happening as non-coercive. And this is why he’s relevant and provides value to both sides of that issue.

    But I don’t think anyone needs to worry about it. I can’t tell that either of the other branches want to do anything so we’ll go on with the government agreeing that what they’re doing is perfectly acceptable.

    frosty (f3184e)

  137. 135,

    Also, censorship and whether something is a violation of the first amendment aren’t the same thing. They are obviously related but I don’t need to apply a first amendment balancing test to recognize censorship.

    frosty (f3184e)

  138. Interesting how right wing radio talkers have lined up in support of mccarthy, like they all got the memo from the power brokers.

    asset (22c678)

  139. @139. Sure, but in this instance I don’t see any daylight between First Amendment censorship and the colloquial kind. How is a government official’s speech censorious if it isn’t coercive?

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  140. Dana,

    You can keep saying it just like Raskin does, but there was no insurrection. Not a shot fired by a protestor. Not a fire started. Some committed violence and they deserve to be sentenced. The rest are being victimized by the government that spits on the rule of law.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  141. This is the same French that’s in favor of censorship by redefining it as government officials having a 1st amendment right to tell private companies what to do? Also the same French that argued for vaccine mandates? The same French that lectures people on how their religion means they should do what he says?

    Do have cites showing his support of these positions?

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  142. https://redstate.com/kiradavis/2023/01/03/twitter-files-the-fbi-belly-button-n682899

    But if you want to talk about an actual insurrection and betrayal of the Constitution, here you go. Adam Schiff is in there because of course he is.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  143. The rest are being victimized by the government that spits on the rule of law.

    How are the rioters “victimized” when the evidence is clear they broke the law? And practically every single one is a MAGA Nation zealot.
    I’ll note that your “some committed violence” equates to 188 criminally charged for assault.
    Also, there’s no firearms requirement in the definition of insurrection.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  144. 141,

    You can keep saying it wasn’t coercive but that won’t make it true. The stuff coming out of Twitter show’s internal communications indicating that they felt coerced.

    French, and you, can pick and choose specific examples that, when taken out of context, would be ok or be counter examples. But you’ve got to ignore a lot to make that work.

    Again, this is the value of French and why he’s relevant. It’s helpful to understand that there are people willing to defend the policing of political speech.

    frosty (08e3d2)

  145. I think this is an objective read of the most scandalous assertions in Twitterfiles

    https://www.techdirt.com/2022/12/20/no-the-fbi-is-not-paying-twitter-to-censor/

    First, what the FBI paid twitter for was data collection on accounts that were authorized by judges (ie, reimbursing twitter’s time to comply with valid subpoenas). So, the FBI was not paying twitter to censor accounts. As the linked author notes, we might rightfully question whether judges are too quick to approve these orders, but that is a different question about discretion. Musk must know better, right?

    Second, anyone can report accounts to twitter that allege violations of its terms of service. Twitter may or may not investigate, and may or may not remove or flag the accounts. Many of the flagged accounts were related to calls to vote on Wednesday (after the election). Does the FBI have a role in ensuring election integrity? One would think. Can the FBI make requests? Again, some here will insist that this is coercive even though there is no showing of what the FBI could legally do if twitter did not comply with the request….data shows not all requests led to action.

    Third, French has argued that nothing in first amendment precedence says that government actors cannot advocate against misinformation (say, on vaccine effects) or cruel information (say, making us all check out Hunter Biden’s penis). Again, the wrinkle is whether there is coercion. Now some will argue that government is working hand-in-hand with twitter to silence speech that is politically beneficial to only one side. But in a way in doing so, there has probably been more discussion about poor Hunter’s laptop than what it may deserve. This is the risk that private organizations take when they make what appears to be political editorial decisions. Boycott them; shun them; post his penis on other media (if you must).

    I just don’t see how French is wrong about the law. It just seems like people have their politics out front of the facts and law….which is fine…but not David French’s fault…..

    AJ_Liberty (daae0e)

  146. Do have cites showing his support of these positions?

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7) — 1/4/2023 @ 4:34 am

    Sure. It’s not hard to find them. Google would be your friend on this. Do you think French hasn’t taken those positions or are you just doing the thing where if I don’t give the answers to your satisfaction you start making pronouncements?

    frosty (08e3d2)

  147. @53

    Whembly, what you’re saying makes sense. But if you’re a conspiracy theorist grifter HFC member you want lots of opportunities to create viral moments you can use to fundraise and prevent a primary challenge from the right.

    Impeach Biden
    Hunter Biden’s laptop
    Investigate Nancy Pelosi’s role in January 6
    Investigate the FBI
    Investigate 2020 voter fraud by Hugo Chavez’s ghost

    If you’re sane member of the GOP (or have a competitive district) you want little to none of that because of the impact on your general election.

    So there’s some conflict there.

    Time123 (4e5652) — 1/3/2023 @ 12:42 pm

    I really don’t see a conflict here. Not really.

    This is about McCarthy believing he’s owed the Speakership.

    We’re literally witnessing a democratic “power struggle” for leadership, and frankly, I’m hear for it. It doesn’t seem like anyone else really wants the Speakership, but McCarthy. However, McCarthy and the 20 malcontents needs to find something to move forward.

    The following has wide consensus, or at the very least, ambivalence:
    Impeach Biden
    Hunter Biden’s laptop
    Investigate Nancy Pelosi’s role in January 6
    Investigate the FBI

    The only thing I think is a real albatross is this:
    Investigate 2020 voter fraud by Hugo Chavez’s ghost
    I find this funny, but I think most voters are ready to “MoveOn.org” from the 2020 election. We have real issue today that needs to be confronted.

    whembly (d116f3)

  148. The only thing I think is a real albatross is this:
    Investigate 2020 voter fraud by Hugo Chavez’s ghost

    I would add Matt Gaetz’s demand that Congressional pages under the age of eighteen be legally considered as over the age of eighteen.

    nk (ad607e)

  149. @135

    @129. You’re begging the question. It’s not censorship when the government official is non-coercively exercising their First Amendment right of expression. Whether and when the speech is coercive is a case-by-case factual question.

    lurker (cd7cd4) — 1/3/2023 @ 11:52 pm

    Yeah, I’m going to disagree with you here.

    Government officials working with non-governmental entities in an established relationship to moderate speech in official government capacity *is* de facto speech suppression.

    Government shouldn’t even have a tangential appearance of collaborating with non-governmental entities, as it would still poison the well politically and ethically.

    whembly (d116f3)

  150. I would add Matt Gaetz’s demand that Congressional pages under the age of eighteen be legally considered as over the age of eighteen.
    nk (ad607e) — 1/4/2023 @ 6:45 am

    you mean the Gerry Studds rule? Been in place for forty years. Try to keep up, nk

    JF (f36754)

  151. Appalled at 151. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. Caps or no caps, that was the right message:

    “Some really good conversations took place last night, and it’s now time for all of our GREAT Republican House Members to VOTE FOR KEVIN, CLOSE THE DEAL, TAKE THE VICTORY, & WATCH CRAZY NANCY PELOSI FLY BACK HOME TO A VERY BROKEN CALIFORNIA, THE ONLY SPEAKER IN U.S. HISTORY TO HAVE LOST THE ‘HOUSE’ TWICE!” the former president wrote on his Truth Social platform on Wednesday morning. “REPUBLICANS, DO NOT TURN A GREAT TRIUMPH INTO A GIANT & EMBARRASSING DEFEAT. IT’S TIME TO CELEBRATE, YOU DESERVE IT. Kevin McCarthy will do a good job, and maybe even a GREAT JOB—JUST WATCH!”

    Even more gratifying, he did not blame poor Melania, again like he did with Oz, for his endorsement of McConnell in 2020.

    nk (ad607e)

  152. @141

    @139. Sure, but in this instance I don’t see any daylight between First Amendment censorship and the colloquial kind. How is a government official’s speech censorious if it isn’t coercive?

    lurker (cd7cd4) — 1/4/2023 @ 12:59 am

    Coercion doesn’t have to be overt.

    Twitter is a private company that was staff by incredibly biased employees (but that not the point).

    When the US government is making requests/demands for content moderation, its much more likely that either:
    a) the biased staff sees such request/demands that closely aligns to their own biased perspectives, so they feel justified in processing them.

    and

    b) when the US government making requests/demands, it’s too easy to take such thing very seriously because the government MUST have some credible rationale, so it’s harder to say “no”.

    The point here is this: this government was engaging in speech suppression by tasking a 3rd party private entity to execute the suppression.

    Tell me that this isn’t Orwellian?

    One of our government’s job is to protect our rights. We shouldn’t have to rely on 3rd party entities, like Twitter, to be the guardrails against intrusion of our civil liberties. The fact that our government is/was willing to engage in speech suppression should be causing 5 alarm fires across the political landscape. But, we’re so entrenched in out political corners that we can’t see this major controversy right in front of us.

    whembly (d116f3)

  153. you mean the Gerry Studds rule? Been in place for forty years. Try to keep up, nk

    I’m a lawyer. I always annotate (“keep up”). Gerry Studds was in 1983, Mark Foley (R-Florida) was in 2006.

    nk (ad607e)

  154. Whembly, If a member of a government body (Police department, Zoning commission, School Board or what have you) believes that an Astro-turf campaign is underway to flood the local paper with letters to the editor from people that don’t really live in the area do they have a right to tell the paper of their concerns?

    For the sake of the hypothetical let’s assume that
    1. they’re correct
    2. The person they’re talking to has zero reason to fear retaliation from the government official.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  155. 147,

    Well, this is the game right. Find only examples where the FBI is invoking the TOS and claim that’s all that was going on. Or ignore what was going on with the IC leaking to the press, congress having hearings, the WH making vague statements and pretend none of that is coercive. Or point to a few cases where they didn’t immediately censor and pretend some exceptions prove the rule.

    My favorite is how censoring something and then adamantly denying and dismissing said censorship when it was happening was wonder of wonders actually, in a way, the opposite of censorship.

    I am sorry that you were made to check out Hunter’s penis. Forced as it was. I was somehow able to escape that.

    I’m also sure that French can cherry pick a set of facts to back into his iron clad legal analysis.

    frosty (08e3d2)

  156. nk (ad607e) — 1/4/2023 @ 7:16 am

    Foley was forced to resign. Studds wasn’t, thus the standard. Annotate better, nk.

    JF (f36754)

  157. @157 Time123, I know it’s quaint, but the proper response of bad speech (ie, astroturf campaign) is countering that with MOAR speech.

    Nothing should stop that “member of a government body” from public pointing out “hey, this is a coordinated astro-turf campaign from out of staters”… which, in fact, happens quite a bit in many places.

    What’s not KOSHER, is for that same “member of a government body” asking/demanding that local paper to suppress these out of staters engagement on their free speech.

    whembly (d116f3)

  158. Government shouldn’t even have a tangential appearance of collaborating with non-governmental entities, as it would still poison the well politically and ethically.

    If you change this from ‘collaborating with’ to ‘coercing’ I’m on board.

    But willing collaboration is OK.

    If Fox News believes the head of the boarder patrol is a decent and virtuous man and values his input in making editorial decisions they have a right to do so.

    If Troy Miller wants to reach out to Fox/CNN/Whatever and tell them what he thinks of their coverage he has every right to do so. If he sees a legitimate reason to inform media of when they’re making mistakes that impact his department’s mission he has a right to use government resources to inform them.

    You can argue about priorities but it’s not censorship unless their’s an element of coercion.

    Now if the local liscencing board sends a letter to a venue owner alleging vague concerns about the legality of a planned and controversial speaker and references risks to their continued business license if the specific speaker is allowed it’s on much shakier ground.

    But so far I haven’t seen any evidence that Twitter, or the people working at it, felt coerced. Much of the outrage I’ve seen has explicitly referenced twitter being run by left leaning people.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  159. Right, JF. And Roe v. Wade (1973) and not Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health (2022) is the standard.

    Never mind.

    nk (ad607e)

  160. latest installment of “good” government censorship:

    Twittergate files: Hillary Clinton inspired a Democrat witch hunt against Twitter to look for Russian accounts that simply didn’t exist – and forced the social media giant into the arms of the FBI

    According to the latest trove of documents from Twitter, the social media company began eyeing Democrat’s concerns with Russian misinformation in August 2017, when Facebook announced it would suspend 300 accounts tied to the foreign nation.

    Twitter, however, did not appear too preoccupied with the problem, with internal messages saying there were ‘no larger patterns’ of Russian misinformation spreading on its platform.

    ‘FB may take action on hundreds of accounts, and we may take action on ~25,’ one message read.

    Other internal memos called on the company’s communications team to make sure the public conversation was focused on Facebook’s Russia problem.

    ‘Twitter is not the focus of inquiry into Russian election meddling right now – the spotlight is on FB,’ Crowell wrote to the company’s leadership.

    Amid mounting pressure, which was tied to Democrat’s outcry alleging that Russian interference played a hand in Clinton’s defeat against Donald Trump in 2016 elections, Twitter submitted a report to the US Senate that it suspended 22 possible Russian accounts.

    The social media company said there were about 179 other accounts with ‘possible links’ to the banned accounts, and about 2,700 suspected accounts under examination.

    Dwarfed by Facebook’s suspension of 300 accounts, Sen. Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat on the Intelligence Committee, condemned Twitter’s report as ‘frankly inadequate on every level.’

    Warner’s criticism appeared to strike a nerve with Crowell, who forwarded a campaign fundraiser email for Warner’s re-election and simply wrote ‘#irony.’

    Given the lack of evidence that Russian accounts were flooding Twitter, leadership at the social media company didn’t appear fazed by Warner’s calls as they accused the senator of politicizing the issue to get attention from the media.

    ‘Warner has political incentive to keep this issue at top of the news, maintain pressure on us and rest of industry to keep producing material for them,’ Crowell wrote in an email to Doresey on September 29, 2017.

    The tipping point came when Clinton herself pushed for greater scrutiny on Twitter.

    JF (f36754)

  161. I’m a lawyer. I always annotate (“keep up”).

    I’m a logic designer. I always backannotate (“retconn”).

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  162. Foley was forced to resign. Studds wasn’t, thus the standard. Annotate better, nk.

    Studds was censured.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  163. @161

    Government shouldn’t even have a tangential appearance of collaborating with non-governmental entities, as it would still poison the well politically and ethically.

    If you change this from ‘collaborating with’ to ‘coercing’ I’m on board.

    I’m not changing it.

    It’s unethical.

    There’s a distinct difference between someone like Adam Schiff using his personal twitter page rebutting whomever.

    Than, Adam Schiff send communique to Twitter as House Intel Chairman demanding content moderation.

    But willing collaboration is OK.

    So you’re okay with government officials collaborating in speech moderation?

    What? Seriously?
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

    How clear does it need to be that Government shouldn’t even be collaborating with media in speech suppression?

    If Fox News believes the head of the boarder patrol is a decent and virtuous man and values his input in making editorial decisions they have a right to do so.

    That’s NOT engaging in speech suppression, by proxy.

    If Troy Miller wants to reach out to Fox/CNN/Whatever and tell them what he thinks of their coverage he has every right to do so. If he sees a legitimate reason to inform media of when they’re making mistakes that impact his department’s mission he has a right to use government resources to inform them.

    That’s NOT engaging in speech suppression, by proxy.

    You can argue about priorities but it’s not censorship unless their’s an element of coercion.

    Coercion doesn’t have to be overt.

    Now if the local liscencing board sends a letter to a venue owner alleging vague concerns about the legality of a planned and controversial speaker and references risks to their continued business license if the specific speaker is allowed it’s on much shakier ground.

    Yes that’s bad, but a different sort of coercion.

    But so far I haven’t seen any evidence that Twitter, or the people working at it, felt coerced. Much of the outrage I’ve seen has explicitly referenced twitter being run by left leaning people.

    Time123 (4e5652) — 1/4/2023 @ 7:29 am

    That’s because you don’t believe it’s possible for government to engage in speech suppression by proxy.

    I don’t know how to convince you of that, if you can’t even get to that.

    whembly (d116f3)

  164. The better solution is to require pages to be over 18, and comely.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  165. 166,

    The other problem is the conflating of public and non-public speech.

    The claim is made that a government official has a right to speak up about something and then the example given is of them publicly saying something on an equal footing with other speakers.

    But this isn’t what happened. Government officials, in their official capacities, privately made demands of twitter and then both parties denied this was happening. These demands also weren’t handled on any sort of equal footing.

    If this was 1st amendment protected speech why did it need to be hidden and denied. Wouldn’t the public interest be better served by informing them and having this conversation in public?

    Just I show off hands; who’s in favor of the US IC routinely publishing lists of issues that are misinformation and the people spreading it? Any thoughts on why this isn’t a political issue with widespread support?

    frosty (2fa1b5)

  166. #154:

    What I like about Trump’s approach here is that he has actually put something at risk. If he’s ignored by the Freedom Caucus, it increases his slide to irrelevance.

    Now, if the FC falls in line, he gets a victory, which he needs now. He’s still the party’s Alpha Male, and McCarthy (the party’s Beta Male) will provide even more dedicated service.

    Appalled (03f53c)

  167. Whembly, I agree with you that coercion doesn’t need to be overt.

    I haven’t seen evidence from the twitter files that twitter was coerced. So far there hasn’t been so much as a single email / slack comment that they needed to do do what the government wanted, or else. It’s all looked like willing collaboration by people who believed the FBI / Government was acting in good faith.

    The question of if the government *was* acting in good faith / using their rights to free speech is a different one and more concerning but not a black / white one.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  168. Ample Jan. 6 Evidence Helps Secure High Conviction Rate in Capitol Riot
    ……..
    About three dozen cases have gone to trial, and all but one of them have resulted in convictions on at least one count, though prosecutors have lost on other charges.

    The conviction rate, which includes pleas, is higher than the Justice Department attains across all of its cases. In the year that ended in September 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic halted most trials for more than a year, around 92% of the nearly 85,000 defendants adjudicated were convicted, according to Justice Department statistics.
    ………
    Prosecutors have suggested they might charge hundreds more in connection with the Jan. 6 attack. In most weeks over the past year, the investigation has taken over much of the federal courthouse in Washington, with multiple trials running at the same time and hearings in dozens of cases. An active grand jury inquiry is still under way.
    ………
    The high conviction rate is in part attributable to the visual evidence defendants themselves often provided by posting their actions in real time on social media, former prosecutors said. The FBI has also been aided by friends, relatives and public sleuths who have offered tips and identified many of the rioters for investigators.
    ……..
    About 3% of those charged in the Jan. 6 cases have opted for criminal trials rather than plea deals since the first jury verdict was reached in March. They pursued a range of defenses, including that they were swept up in the moment or wanted to heed Mr. Trump’s call to protest the certification of Mr. Biden’s election victory. They have seen little success.
    ……..
    Judges have largely given prosecutors broad latitude. U.S. Circuit Judge Justin Walker, who was appointed to the bench by President Trump, in December criticized a defense lawyer trying to argue that prosecutors overreached in using a statute that had only been used in very different contexts previously.

    “It shouldn’t be surprising that there’s no precedent for a prosecution,” he said, citing the singular nature of the Jan. 6 attack.

    Rioters have tested out other defenses, arguing they felt caught up in an event similar to Black Friday consumer mania or were part of a larger movement.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  169. @170 <strong>Time123 (4e5652) — 1/4/2023 @ 8:41 am
    Time… I would refer you to frosty’s excellent encapsulation of the issue @168 much more succinctly than I ever could:

    The other problem is the conflating of public and non-public speech.

    The claim is made that a government official has a right to speak up about something and then the example given is of them publicly saying something on an equal footing with other speakers.

    But this isn’t what happened. Government officials, in their official capacities, privately made demands of twitter and then both parties denied this was happening. These demands also weren’t handled on any sort of equal footing.

    If this was 1st amendment protected speech why did it need to be hidden and denied. Wouldn’t the public interest be better served by informing them and having this conversation in public?

    Just I show off hands; who’s in favor of the US IC routinely publishing lists of issues that are misinformation and the people spreading it? Any thoughts on why this isn’t a political issue with widespread support?

    frosty (2fa1b5) — 1/4/2023 @ 8:18 am

    whembly (d116f3)

  170. Much of the outrage I’ve seen has explicitly referenced twitter being run by left leaning people.

    I haven’t seen evidence from the twitter files that twitter was coerced.

    Another option is willful blindness.

    frosty (08e3d2)

  171. George Santos Came to Washington. It Was Awkward.

    ……..George Santos, Republican representative-elect of New York, spent his first day in Congress as an outcast.
    ……..
    Dozens of reporters waited for him outside his new office in the Longworth Building, peppering him with questions about whether he owed his constituents answers about the fantasy persona he created in order to win his seat, and whether he had any response to the investigations that those fabrications have produced.
    ………
    “The guy who lied about his résumé?” Representative Mike Gallagher, Republican of Wisconsin, said when asked about Mr. Santos as he exited a morning conference meeting ahead of the vote for speaker. He said Mr. Santos “demonstrated he doesn’t have a grasp on the truth.”
    …….
    The day brought Mr. Santos his first taste of the all-permeating press corps that freely roams the Capitol, as he navigated the new environment while in the midst of a scandal of his own making. At one point, as he appeared to be heading toward his office, he turned on his heels and walked in the opposite direction after spotting the cameras waiting for him.
    …….
    On Tuesday, Mr. Santos’s isolation was on display in the House chamber ahead of the highly anticipated speaker vote. He sat alone in the back of the chamber, staring at his phone, even as a group of New York Republicans mingled not far from him.

    Anthony D’Esposito, another incoming Republican representative-elect from Long Island, had been aligning himself with Mr. Santos after they won their races in November. The two appeared in multiple joint interviews on Fox News. But on Tuesday, Mr. D’Esposito, chatting with the other New York Republicans, did not even approach Mr. Santos in the chamber to say hello.

    Representative Andrew Garbarino, another New York Republican, later posted a picture to Twitter of members of the state’s Republican delegation on the House floor with Mr. McCarthy. “New York is in the House!” he wrote. Mr. Santos was notably absent from the photo.
    ……..
    Even though Mr. Santos was shunned, it remained unclear what, if anything, Republicans would do to punish him, or how he would choose to comport himself once he was sworn in. On Tuesday, Mr. McCarthy had more pressing concerns, like his own political future, to contend with. He so far has remained silent about Mr. Santos and his position in the Republican conference.
    ………

    Sad!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  172. Whembly, at your suggestion I’ll pay attention to what Frosty has to say.

    He refers to government “demands” which implies that twitter was obligated to comply with what the government asked. The twitter files shows that in many cases they didn’t and told the requesters as much. So it would be more accurate to say government ‘requests”

    The rest of his comment is about what Twitter and the government stated at the time. that may be a good point and I don’t recall the specifics of what they said. But given that it’s Frosty I’d need to see the comments in context before making any conclusion.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  173. @176 Time123 (4e5652) — 1/4/2023 @ 9:31 am

    Buddy, are you simpy trying to be fair here? Or just simply unwilling to believe that the government can do no wrong in this regard?

    Let me ask you this: WHY are you OK with government officials, acting in official capacity, engaging (put aside whether or not coercion is involved) with social media in content moderation/suppression?

    whembly (d116f3)

  174. @174, Frosty, nice snark that ignores my specific reference to types of evidence it would be reasonable to expect to find if there was coercion.

    Do you have any evidence twitter was being coerced? If there was coercion it shouldn’t be that hard to find since the new owner has given full access to people very motivated to find such.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  175. Appalled (03f53c) — 1/4/2023 @ 8:30 am

    Trump backing a three-time loser? I’m shocked!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  176. For first time in history, two black men have been nominated as Speaker of the House.

    McCarthy’s foes have nominated Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) as an alternative. House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) has also been nominated.

    …….
    McCarthy has lost the fourth round of voting, as Reps.-elect Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), Josh Brecheen (R-Okla.), Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) and Dan Bishop (R-N.C.) became the first Republicans to support Rep.-elect Byron Donalds (R-Fla.)

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  177. @177, whembly, what if people on Twitter were encouraging voters to wait until Wednesday (after the election) to vote? Is this a content-neutral bit of misinformation that the FBI could bring to the attention of Twitter and its terms of service?

    It would be helpful to see examples of content-specific posts that were brought to the attention of Twitter by the FBI that unfairly targeted conservatives. And, is there evidence of similar questionable content on the Left that was not brought to Twitter’s attention by the FBI? Right now, it just seems like a lot of nebulous claims put on top of a few claims that are just wrong, like the FBI paying twitter to help ban people (whereas the FBI was paying Twitter to comply with subpoenas). I’ve googled and am not seeing it. Maybe you can do better than me.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  178. @181 AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 1/4/2023 @ 9:47 am
    Government has no business coordinating with Twitter regarding bad speech, which “misinformation” falls into that bucket.

    If Twitter wants to address it internally and formulate policies against misinformation, which according to the story the don’t have a formal policy for that, they are more than allowed to do so.

    Again, and I can’t believe some folks really don’t see this, the response to bad speech is not moderation/suppression, it’s putting forward BETTER speech.

    We all have agencies to our own lives, and we don’t need a Daddy-Government telling us what we should or should not read/hear.

    Furthermore, this is egregious to the nth degree:
    https://hotair.com/ed-morrissey/2023/01/04/that-time-a-sitting-congressman-demand-that-a-journalist-be-silenced-and-the-media-ignored-it-n521414

    whembly (d116f3)

  179. 178,

    My comment in 174 wasn’t snark. It was an observation that you confirmed in 176.

    As to your question, you acknowledge

    that coercion doesn’t need to be overt

    but also make it clear your looking for

    a single email / slack comment that they needed to do do what the government wanted, or else

    aka, overt coercion. So, no, I didn’t ignore it. I’m just not agreeing to your framing.

    frosty (ddaeb7)

  180. @AJ_Liberty and @Time123
    My position isn’t an outlier or a crank…

    https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1610686277850128386
    (which IIya Shapiro retweeted)

    Adam Schiff is (for now) the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee – with immense power over Big Tech and FBI/CIA – so when he “requests” that Big Tech platforms ban journalists who are his critics, it’s inherently coercive and, in any event, completely improper:

    whembly (d116f3)

  181. what if people on Twitter were encouraging voters to wait until Wednesday (after the election) to vote? Is this a content-neutral bit of misinformation that the FBI could bring to the attention of Twitter and its terms of service?

    The correct response to that isn’t for the FBI to demand these people be removed or censored. The correct response would be for government resources to be used to educate and inform, i.e. tell people the correct dates.

    What if the US IC knew that the data on the laptop of the son of a POTUS candidate wasn’t RU disinfo but pressured social media to communicate the opposite? Is that content-neutral misinformation? Should the US IC be actively engaging in misinformation and managing the narrative around that?

    frosty (ddaeb7)

  182. I don’t believe it was the FBI which forced Twitter to label “misgendering” as violence and ban accounts which, for example, called Chelsea Manning “Bradley” and “he/him”.

    It was the Rothschilds, I’m pretty sure. Them and their climate-changing space lasers.

    nk (ad607e)

  183. Make that a four-time loser: The current tally:

    McCarthy 201

    Donalds 20

    Jeffries 212

    Sad!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  184. New Congresswoman Fights Rival Over Witchcraft Accusation

    Rep. Anna Paulina Luna came to Congress on her first day in office ready to do battle—not just with Democrats, but also with her own party, as she became one of the 20 Republicans to vote against electing Kevin McCarthy speaker.

    But back home in her conservative Florida district, Luna is waging a very different kind of war: a legal fight with political enemies who say she is a literal witch.
    ……..
    The letter demands that Matt Tito, a pal of Roger Stone who mulled challenging Luna in a primary, apologize on video for his accusations, which include claims that Luna was fired from a job—and that she had a sexual liaison with Rep. Matt Gaetz.
    ……..
    “You are hereby demanded to publicly and immediately retract each and every defamatory statement you made about Ms. Luna on the show,” Lisko continued. “Because you do not have the ability to distribute your retraction widely on your social media, you are demanded to apologize and retract your statements on the Bubba the Love Sponge Show or by making a retraction and apology video that you send to me that Ms. Luna will distribute via her social media.”
    …….
    Tito claimed he learned about Luna’s purported background from other MAGA figures.

    According to Tito, Hispanics for Trump associate Paloma Zuniga said that “Luna practices witchcraft.”

    “That is where I heard that from,” Tito said. “She puts spells on people.”

    Another failed California Republican congressional hopeful, Omar Navarro, suggested the unsubstantiated rumors must be accurate because so many people were repeating them.

    “It has got to be true to a certain extent,” he told The Daily Beast. “It’s fair enough to say that it’s spread among people in the Republican Party.”
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  185. I think attempts to suppress the vote through misinformation would be in the purview of the FBI, just as attempts to encourage insurrection or harassing individuals.

    I do agree that there is a worrisome slippery slope. Is someone joking about getting out the vote on Wednesday after the election someone that needs to be flagged or banned? I also don’t have much sympathy for Twitter’s terms of service being nebulous, vague, and applied unevenly. But following 2016 when a foreign power was using social media to influence an election, I can also sympathize with moderators being sensitive to memes.

    More speech is always sounds good, but is there any worry about signal to noise…and that due to the nature of social media…..frequently noise trends and a lot of discourse is wasted on countering it. Right now we see a lot of accusations…frankly because there’s not much cost in those accusations being wrong or inflated.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  186. Frosty and whembly,

    Excellent job pointing out all the issues with government officials using their office to violate the 1st Amendment. I’m sure the silent readers are learning for the first time on this site how much damage our government has done to individual liberties.

    It’s shameful that American Constitutional rights have become fodder for partisanship. But here we are.

    NJRob (0a5989)

  187. The FBI didn’t demand. They had no power to demand and there was no consequence if Twitter failed to act on their request. It’s interesting that this term keeps getting misused. Now it’s fair to question whether the FBI should be broadly policing Twitter’s Terms of Service, but the specifics here matter. What requests were made and do reasonable people agree that it was appropriate for the FBI to bring it to Twitter’s attention. Some appear content with making a stinky accusation and hope that wins the day. Twitter has a reputational incentive to remove misinformation that can harm its viewers (like being misled about voting days). The idea that Twitter has to hope that some other contributor sufficiently debunks the hoax doesn’t seem to be in Twitter’s best interest.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  188. Headline: Trump urges support for McCarthy, warns GOP about embarrassment

    ……“NOT TURN A GREAT TRIUMPH INTO A GIANT & EMBARRASSING DEFEAT.”……

    He said without a hint of irony.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  189. Back on topic, will this Speaker fiasco cause the GOP to reexamine the metastasized cancer — no, not Trump, his spawn — it nurtured for six years or will each go on just ambling on looking only to hold on to their jobs? I vote the second.

    nk (ad607e)

  190. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 1/4/2023 @ 11:00 am

    Some headlines just write themselves.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  191. Rep.-elect Anna Paulina Luna (R-Fla.) said she’s planning to talk with Kevin McCarthy despite not voting for him on any ballot.

    “I’m going to talk to Leader McCarthy because I told him no matter what, that there should always be an open line of communication,” she said. “So I’m not hiding where I’m at. I’ve always been very transparent.”

    Maybe she will put a hex on him.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  192. I put up a fresh open thread on the speaker vote.

    Dana (1225fc)

  193. @AJ_Liberty: The appropriate FBI response in that regards is the use existing government communications channels. That is, correct the misinformation PUBLICLY.

    Twitter could then take this public information as a basis for any policies they deem necessary on their own.

    What the FBI should NOT do, is collaborate, no matter how “nicely”, with Twitter to actively moderate/suppress speech. Hell, they shouldn’t even be in the business of saying “hey, this is against your TOS”.

    whembly (d116f3)

  194. It’s not hard to find them. Google would be your friend on this.

    You made the claim, so don’t burden-shift, show the cites.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  195. Hell, they shouldn’t even be in the business of saying “hey, this is against your TOS”.

    Twitter puts a prompt next to each tweet, inviting everyone who feels like it to do exactly that. I’ve used it. It’s what the government officials did, and that’s all they did. Twitter’s response to the government officials’ notifications was the same as its responses to mine. It acted on some and not on others. It informed the notifier of those it acted on, and said nothing about those it didn’t. If there’s evidence Twitter was any more coerced by the government officials using that freely available service than they were by my using it, I’ve yet to see it.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  196. @201 I feel like no one has taken the time to read the actual twitter files.

    If you had, you’d see numerous twitter employees responding that they felt “pressured” by the government’s request.

    In addition, I haven’t seen anyone mentioned this, but Congress literally asked these social media companies to testify in front of the committee and all I heard is the undertone of this threat that is “that’s a nice media company you have… shame if something would happen to it”.

    But, hey, for some of you…I don’t think you’re willing to be convinced.

    whembly (d116f3)

  197. https://twitter.com/mtaibbi/status/1610394315938992129?

    Lurker,

    Taibbi’s #37 directly contradicts your claik that the government was using normal procedures to request twitter silence people. They followed up asking wether what they wanted was done yet.

    Still trying to claim that’s not coercion nor a violation of the 1st Amendment?

    NJRob (f935db)

  198. This

    I feel like no one has taken the time to read the actual twitter files.

    And this

    But, hey, for some of you…I don’t think you’re willing to be convinced.

    Are understatements. A person like French, and many of his defenders, doesn’t have ignorance as an excuse.

    frosty (dcc46a)

  199. what if people on Twitter were encouraging voters to wait until Wednesday (after the election) to vote?

    So what if they do? Are you worried that people would actually take such advice? If they would, I’d consider them too stupid to be voting and would be grateful for them to absent themselves from the election.

    Why on earth would anyone be okay with the government suppressing speech or use such a stupid example as a pretext for doing so?

    But following 2016 when a foreign power was using social media to influence an election….

    Russia and China have been trying to influence our elections for a long time. This didn’t start with the 2016 election, and suppressing speech on social media platforms won’t make it go away.

    Nobody from Nowhere (d79de8)

  200. Whembly, I’m Ok with the goverment *asking* that private parties hold back information when there is a legitimate public interest. I’m not ok with coercion or threats. I think non-controversial example is the police asking a news agency not to release information about a crime that would be known only to the perpetrators. It’s a reasonable request but any coercion would be a violation of the first amendment.

    I’m Ok with extending this to other legitimate pubic policy ends so long as there isn’t coercion, overt or implied.

    I agree that when the request is coming from someone with regulatory oversight (such as Adam Schiff) there’s deep cause for concern.

    Frosty, So you have no evidence that anyone at twitter felt coerced? No internal emails/slack/texts between twitter employees about concerns with refusing government requests? Nothing at all?

    Time123 (4e5652)

  201. 140

    Interesting how right wing radio talkers have lined up in support of mccarthy, like they all got the memo from the power brokers.

    asset (22c678) — 1/4/2023 @ 12:56 am

    Bo Snerdly (James Goulden) Rush Limbaugh’s former call screener on WABC 770 am M-F 4pm to 5 pm “The Rush Hour” seems to be an exception, He says that if Kevin McCArthy was astateman he would step down and that someone should when he sees he can’t win (or that it would divide too much something.

    Sammy Finkelman (d94949)

  202. Important to point out that White House was also making requests that twitter take down various tweets during this time.

    based on previous twitter files there’s evidence that they complied with some of these requests and didn’t comply with others. Which is the same thing they did with the FBI request and further evidence against coercion.

    Time123 (4e5652)

  203. Whembly @202, I’ve been following the twitter files but I haven’t seen emails saying that twitter employees felt the government was pressuring them. I’ve seen strong characterizations from Tiabbi but those weren’t supported by the actual information he referenced.

    Can you point me to one or two?

    Time123 (4e5652)

  204. 206,

    We’ve done this routine enough times to know how it plays out. You ask questions, I answer them, you claim I didn’t answer them, I answer them again, you claim you didn’t understand, you divert to something else, etc.

    In this case I’d give you an example, you’d claim it wasn’t an example because twitter could have refused, I’d say it doesn’t matter if they could have because that’s not how coercion works, etc.

    After it all you never seem to feel better about yourself. I like you too much to keep putting you through that. The only way out is to not to play. Break the cycle time. I have faith in you.

    frosty (dbf3b6)

  205. If whembly wants to argue that government officials should voluntarily refrain from exercising their constitutional rights in a bend-over-backwards effort to avoid even the most innocent appearance of influencing private speech, I won’t object. I may even agree. But let’s be clear about what happened here: A private company implemented a process that solicited feedback from everyone, government actors included. Some officials took Twitter up on that invitation. To call it censorship defies any definition of censorship I know.

    Have I read all the Twitter files? No. I read many from the early trenches, files hyped by Musk, Weiss, et al. They didn’t show anything like what was promised. At a certain point life’s too short, fool me once, etc., so I gave up looking for scandalous proof that accusers themselves had failed to provide. But you know who did read all of them? Mick Masnick. And he seems to have quite effectively debunked the accusations. See the link in AJ’s comment @ 147. And make sure to see the link in Masnick’s post to his previous report on the Twitter/Hunter Biden incident.

    Anyway, circling back to where this began… David French. As President of FIRE, and afterward as an advocate for religious liberty, French probably did more to defend the First Amendment than all but a relative handful of living people. Before his NeverTrump apostasy, most conservative speech and religion advocates would have agreed with that. The attempt now to cast him as some kind of enemy of free speech is comical.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  206. @211

    Have I read all the Twitter files? No.

    lurker (cd7cd4) — 1/4/2023 @ 2:33 pm

    Therein lies the problem.

    I highly encourage you to read them all.

    Because if you had, you’d know that the FBI and other government agencies had private communications to Twitter via a “one-ways” system for Twitter to process.

    Not, this “feedback solicitation” that everyone can do. We’re not talking about that. THIS is different than THAT.

    whembly (d116f3)

  207. #203: That appears to be a request for account information related to investigations of accounts believed to have broken the law. That’s beyond the scope of content moderation. If it raise coercion concerns, they would be about legal process, not censorship. Regardless, I see no coercion there. It just looks like someone apologetically asking Twitter to turn over information Twitter previously agreed to provide.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  208. @209. Time123… I took the time to read them all.

    I seriously doubt you did, because if you did, you’d know exactly what I’m referring to.

    Saying “I didn’t see what you mean” does not justify that *I* have to go and find it for you. As a friend, I’m encouraging YOU to read the twitter files themselves, from beginning to end. It’s light reading so it shouldn’t take too long.

    whembly (d116f3)

  209. @212. Masnick’s post addresses and disposes of those cases.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  210. We’re not talking about that. THIS is different than THAT.

    whembly (d116f3) — 1/4/2023 @ 2:48 pm

    A better question is do the people you’re talking to either know that and are trying to pretend they don’t or have they worked to remain ignorant.

    frosty (7f9683)

  211. 211,

    People can change over their lifetime. Sometimes stress. Sometimes just through circumstance. This can be even more dramatic with public figures. The King who wrote Letters from a Birmingham Jail was a different man than the person who wrote Where Do We Go From Here. Time changes people.

    The Trump/NeverTrump and covid issues haven’t been kind either. I’ve watched a number of people simply break over the last several years.

    frosty (dbf3b6)

  212. Whembly, I read them and didn’t see evidence of coercion. I’m open to the idea that I missed something and the fact that you’re adamant it’s there makes me think I may have. But I’ve looked and didn’t find it. Respectfully I’m asking you to point out the evidence that backs up your claim that there was coercion.

    Time123 (f4b1bd)

  213. @210 don’t make your inability to provide evidence of coercion my problem.

    Time123 (f4b1bd)

  214. 219,

    You won then right? Isn’t that how it works? I didn’t meet your demands so you get the W? Congratulations! 🎉🎈🍾🎊

    frosty (5d682a)

  215. “At a certain point life’s too short, fool me once, etc., so I gave up looking for scandalous proof that accusers themselves had failed to provide.”

    This is the amusing part. Everyone that has read all of the Twitter Files plus all of the investigative journalists aching for a scoop….apparently none of them can write a compelling article that highlights the coercion.

    This reminds me once upon a time I was on a flight to Tokyo and had the pleasure of sitting next to a devout Mormon who wanted to share his religion with me. With nine hours to spare, I figured what the heck and politely listened to what he had to say. Of course it culminated with Joseph Smith and the discovery of the Golden Plates…and their subsequent disappearance. I stopped him and asked how he knew any of that was true and how could I. He paused and said, well you have to pray on it and you will come to see the truth.

    That’s what I feel like we have here….like the guy outside the Capitol on January 6th….who prayed for Jesus to tell him NOT to go in. Sure enough, no stand-down message. Push forward with stopping the steal. I hope my prayers are answered…heck I hope everyone’s prayers are answered…

    AJ_Liberty (4aef39)

  216. My sympathies for that jarring flight, AJ.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  217. There are none so blind as those who will not see.

    NJRob (5bb254)

  218. @218

    Whembly, I read them and didn’t see evidence of coercion. I’m open to the idea that I missed something and the fact that you’re adamant it’s there makes me think I may have. But I’ve looked and didn’t find it. Respectfully I’m asking you to point out the evidence that backs up your claim that there was coercion.

    Time123 (f4b1bd) — 1/4/2023 @ 4:04 pm

    Sorry that I was late to seeing this.

    I’m not making the claim that there was “coercion”, in the way you keep framing as it was an overt act. In fact, I’m arguing that it’s irrelevant.

    I’m claiming that these were improper.

    Government actors shouldn’t use their influence that would lead to it’s citizen being moderated/suppressed, especially without some cognizant observation of our civil rights.

    Please stop looking for this “coercion” tangent, and look at it from an abuse of Government’s influence.

    whembly (0ae2ca)

  219. @224 Time123 (f4b1bd) — 1/4/2023 @ 4:04 pm

    Another way to look at this Time123…

    Let’s say various government officials, from FBI, ATF, Whitehouse worked to persuade the major banks in the US to all band together to block charge transactions for guns and ammo. And all the banks agreed!

    Is that a violation of our 2nd Amendment rights?

    whembly (0ae2ca)

  220. #217. Of course people change. We all do by degrees, French included. But he’s essentially the same person he was ten years ago. Do you follow him on Twitter? Read his Dispatch posts? I do. Most of what he advocates are the same principled defenses of unpopular speakers and religious liberty he ever did. You could be forgiven for not knowing that if your sources for David French news are the outrage merchants whose noses he put out of joint with his disrespect for their orange avatar.

    lurker (cd7cd4)


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