Friday, September 25, 2020

Last Call For That Other Joe's Problem Child

The Joe in this case is former Gore veep pick and "Independent" Sen, Joe Lieberman, and his son Matt is currently running as the spoiler in the upcoming Georgia Senate special runoff election, primed to split the Democratic vote with candidate Raphael Warnock, and handing the race over to two Republicans.
U.S. Senate candidate Matt Lieberman is under intense pressure to drop out of the race by fellow Democrats using a deeply personal argument: They say he’s poised to spoil the party’s chances at a victory in Georgia, much in the same way a long-shot contender hobbled his father’s bid for vice president.

Worried that Lieberman could siphon votes in a messy special election from Raphael Warnock, the party establishment’s favorite, they’re drawing parallels between his campaign and that of Ralph Nader, a Green Party candidate whom Democrats blamed for costing Al Gore and Joe Lieberman the 2000 election by taking votes from them in Florida.

“Were it not for Ralph Nader, Joe Lieberman could have been the first Jewish vice president and likely the first Jewish president,” said Michael Rosenzweig, a leader of a group of Jewish Democrats in Georgia aiming to push Lieberman out of the race.

Rosenzweig added that while Matt Lieberman is well respected in local circles, “we believe that he doesn’t have a realistic chance of winning this thing."

"He does have a chance of knocking Warnock out of the runoff, though, which will be very troubling,” Rosenzweig said.

Lieberman, a former principal of the Atlanta Jewish Academy, has roundly rejected talk of quitting the race, saying he has as much shot as Warnock to defeat Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler. But a series of polls out this week suggest that’s not the case.

Each poll shows Lieberman hovering around 10% of the vote while Warnock, pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, has roughly double his support and is running neck-and-neck with Loeffler and Republican US. Rep. Doug Collins in the special election.

Those very same polls have become part of Lieberman’s reasoning for staying in the race.

“Either I’m in a statistical dead heat with Warnock or I’m sufficiently far behind not to be a threat,” Lieberman said in an interview. “Those are the two possibilities going forward. And if I end up at 10%, I pose no threat whatsoever to Warnock advancing. If I’m at 20%, I’m every bit as strong as he is.”

Despite Warnock’s rise, Democrats are increasingly expressing concerns that Lieberman’s presence in the contest will take just enough votes away from Warnock to allow the two Republicans to squeeze ahead, depriving the party of a shot in a January runoff between the top two finishers.

It gets worse for Lieberman though as today Barack Obama endorsed Warnock along with a slate of other Democratic candidates, and Lieberman's response was to trash Obama in a state like Georgia with a large number of Black voters for supporting a Black candidate.
That response puts Lieberman square in the jackass dudebro category, and he needs to go.

Retribution Execution, Con't

When the Trump regime canceled a State Department award ceremony for Finnish journalist Jessikka Aro last year because of her criticism of Trump, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo chalked it all up to a clerical oversight and that he had never seen the list of awardees. Turns out that was a huge lie on multiple levels.
The Trump administration rescinded an award recognizing the work of a journalist from Finland last year after discovering she had criticized President Trump in social media posts, then gave a false explanation for withdrawing the honor, according to a report by the State Department’s internal watchdog.

The report tracks how the discovery of the journalist’s remarks worried senior U.S. officials and prompted a decision to withdraw the honor to avoid a possible public relations debacle.

The report’s release is likely to worsen tensions between the department’s leadership and the inspector general’s office, which has undergone several shake-ups following the firing of Inspector General Steve Linick in the spring at the request of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

“The Inspector General’s report is another somber example of how fear and partisanship have permeated our nation’s foreign policy and diplomacy under the Trump administration,” said Sen. Robert Menendez, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who along with seven other senators requested the investigation.

According to the report, the journalist, Jessikka Aro, was selected for the State Department’s International Women of Courage Awards for her reporting on Russian propaganda activities dating back to 2014. Aro endured death threats and cyber attacks for her work, which helped expose Russian troll factories.

After she was informed of her selection and offered flight options, State Department interns discovered her Facebook and Twitter posts, including one from September 2018 in which she noted that “Trump constantly labels journalists as ‘enemy’ and ‘fake news,’” said the report. In another tweet she noted that Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin would meet in Helsinki where “Finnish people can protest them both. Sweet.”

According to meeting notes obtained by the IG, senior U.S. officials argued that Aro’s invitation should be withdrawn, including the acting director of the Office of Global Women’s Issues. The director’s concerns included the possibility that the “media could highlight the tweets and Facebook posts during the ceremony,” which could cause “potential embarrassment to the Department, particularly given the involvement of the Secretary and the First Lady [Melania Trump].”

After the State Department withdrew Aro’s invitation and the story became public in a report by Foreign Policy, the department’s press office told reporters that Aro had been “incorrectly notified” that “she’d been selected as a finalist. This was an error. This was a mistake.”

The department also told Congress that Aro “ultimately was not selected to receive the award, due to the highly competitive selection of candidates.”

But the IG ultimately found that the decision to give her the award was not a mistake and was included in a memo approved by Pompeo.

It also noted that the decision to withdraw the award was due to the discovery of the social media posts despite public claims otherwise. “Every person OIG interviewed in connection with this matter acknowledged” that had her social media posts not been flagged, “Ms. Aro would have received the IWOC Award,” the report said.


The bigger issue is that Aro helped to reveal Putin's internet troll farms and paid a heavy price for it as they targeted her with a global disinformation campaign.  She was able to get justice for the right-wing Finnish online attackers.

When the State Department realized they were about to piss off Putin in a bad way, they yanked the award. Then they lied about it.

Now they've been caught in the lie. Pompeo should resign, of course, but he won't.

The Country Goes Viral, Con't

 With 205,000 dead now over six months as we head into flu season, the COVID-19 pandemic in America is nowhere near over and all indications are it will be catastrophically worse over the next six months.

The coronavirus is surging once again across the U.S., with cases rising in 22 states over the past week.

The big picture: There isn't one big event or sudden occurrence that explains this increase. We simply have never done a very good job containing the virus, despite losing 200,000 lives in just the past six months, and this is what that persistent failure looks like.

By the numbers: The U.S. is now averaging roughly 43,000 new cases per day, a 16% increase from a week ago.The biggest increases are largely concentrated in the West and Midwest, though Maine and New Jersey also saw their new infections tick up over the past week. Seven states — Arizona, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, Texas, Utah and Wyoming — saw their daily infections rise by at least 60% over the past week. Testing was up by almost 22% over the same period. The U.S. is now conducting about 860,000 coronavirus tests per day.

What's next: There's every reason to believe the next several months will be a particularly high-risk period. Colder weather will cause people to move indoors, where the virus spreads more easily. People will travel and see friends and family over the holidays. Mask adherence is already only so-so. And flu season will set in at the same time. The best way to manage that risk is to enter into it with a low number of cases. The NIH's Anthony Fauci has said cases should ideally be below 10,000 per day heading into the fall. But we haven't been able to consistently keep them under 40,000.

The bottom line: The U.S. is racing toward a vaccine, and doctors are getting better at treating the virus. But Americans, overall, are pretty bad at doing the simple things necessary to contain the virus, save lives and make us all safer.


Letting 205,000 people die was a choice the regime made.  Letting them continue to do so is a choice we have to make in six weeks.


Related Posts with Thumbnails