Saturday, April 17, 2021

The GOP's Race To The Bottom, Con't

It was only a matter of time before GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and House Republicans made their post-Trump move towards being the party of Whites official with the formation of the America First caucus, complete with a focus on "Anglo-Saxon political traditions".

Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) are starting a right-wing caucus in Congress that seeks to “follow in President Trump’s footsteps,” which could prove yet another thorn in the side of Republican leaders already struggling to unite a bitterly divided party.

According to a seven-page policy platform published by Punchbowl News, the group wants members to display “a certain intellectual boldness” and be willing to “step on some toes and sacrifice sacred cows” – in other words, break with the GOP on some issues.

Among the group’s positions are a belief in unfounded claims of widespread election fraud and support for voting restrictions, as well as an effort to roll back all coronavirus safety measures and “make sure we do not overreact to a pandemic in this same way again.”

A lengthy passage on immigration says the U.S. is “a nation with a border, and a culture, strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions,” which is “threatened when foreign citizens are imported en-masse.”

Under “infrastructure,” the platform promotes “architectural, engineering and aesthetic value that befits the progeny of European architecture,” echoing Trump’s now-revoked executive order banning many modern architectural styles for federal government buildings.

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), who Punchbowl reported had “agreed to join,” told Forbes he is “looking” at joining the America First Caucus but said he “hadn’t seen” the language about immigration, claiming the group is “not supposed to be about race at all.”

“We’re stronger, you know, as diversified,” Gohmert said when asked about the incendiary language in the platform, adding “there’s some things that helped make us strong – slavery nearly destroyed us, it was a horrendous thing.”

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who is under federal investigation for an alleged sexual relationship with a 17-year-old, tweeted he is “proud” to be joining the caucus, which he said will “end wars, stop illegal immigration & promote trade that is fair to American workers.”

A spokesperson for Rep. Barry Moore (R-Ala.), denied Punchbowl’s reporting that he joined the group: "He will not agree to join any caucus until he’s had an opportunity to research their platform."

Nick Dyer, a spokesperson for Greene, confirmed the existence of the group to Forbes in a statement that said to “be on the look out for a public release for the America First Caucus platform when it’s released publicly very soon.”

Forbes has reached out to Gosar’s office for comment.

The term “Anglo-Saxon” has become increasingly controversial, particularly in academia, due to the adoption of the term and its symbology by white supremacists. A medieval studies group originally called the International Society of Anglo Saxonists even changed its name in 2019 after a member alleged it emboldens white supremacy.

“We’re taught, when we get on an airliner, before you help somebody else, you put your own mask on first, so that you are capable of helping somebody else,” Gohmert said of the caucus’ philosophy. “If we let our country go without taking care of America, making sure we’re viable for the future, then we’re not going to be in a position to help the other countries,” he added.
House GOP Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is in full panic mode over this, because he knows exactly what this means for GOP chances in any 2021/2022 race where the electorate isn't at least 80% white. 
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Friday that the Republican Party is not the party of "nativist dog whistles" in an apparent response to a new right-wing caucus that explicitly calls for promoting "Anglo-Saxon political traditions."

McCarthy issued a tweet that does not explicitly reference the new "America First Caucus" — established by GOP Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (Ga.) and Paul Gosar (Ariz.) — but came hours after its policy platform began leaking to the media.

"America is built on the idea that we are all created equal and success is earned through honest, hard work. It isn’t built on identity, race, or religion," McCarthy wrote.

"The Republican Party is the party of Lincoln & the party of more opportunity for all Americans — not nativist dog whistles," he added.


Except of course here we have Republicans explicitly stating that the GOP is absolutely the party of racist, nativist dog whistles and that those who are not White and of European descent are unwelcome in the party and unwelcome in America.  Even McCarthy realizes that's a political death sentence for the GOP in a state like his own California, and increasingly in states like NC, Georgia, Michigan and Arizona, and deservedly so.

The larger issue of course is that the GOP is dispensing with the appetizer and salad course and going straight to the, well, white meat dish. There's no longer any pretending that the GOP isn't the party of Whites First, and anyone remaining in the party at this point, well.

No real doubt as to their loyalties, huh?

Vernon Learnin' The Truth

Last year a Black Georgia lawmaker, Vernon Davis, announced he would switch to the Republican party in order to endorse Donald Trump. Republicans hailed it as proof that Trump was going to win as much as a quarter of the Black vote in 2020 or more. Trump didn't even win Georgia, let alone a quarter of the Black vote nationally, it was less than half of that.
But then Vernon Davis decided he was going to run for GOP Gov. Brian Kemp's job, and he's learning the hard way just what Southern White Republicans think about Black Republicans who dare to be anything other than window dressing to help them hurt Democrats.

A former Democratic state legislator who switched parties after he endorsed Donald Trump launched an insurgent challenge Friday against Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, setting the stage for a race that will test the former president’s influence in Georgia.

Vernon Jones aims to tap into GOP anger at Kemp for resisting Trump’s demands to overturn Joe Biden’s narrow victory in Georgia in November, though his long record as an elected Democratic official seems certain to complicate his bid to win over Republican voters.

At a sparsely attended kickoff event outside the state Capitol, Jones delivered a roughly 30-minute speech where he called Kemp a phony conservative and pledged to replace Georgia’s voting system, which came under attack by pro-Trump conspiracy theorists after Biden’s victory.

As he signed autographs for a small group of supporters, Jones refused to answer a question about how he can attract GOP support as a lifelong Democrat or say whether he expects to receive Trump’s endorsement.

The former president has repeatedly promised to back a primary challenger to Kemp, though it’s not yet clear whether he’ll side with Jones, who gained national attention after he publicly supported Trump’s reelection campaign a year ago. Jones formally switched to the GOP in January, after his term in the Legislature expired.

Even with Trump’s help, Jones faces a steep challenge with the Georgia GOP electorate. Though recent polls show Kemp has been damaged by his falling out with Trump, the first-term governor’s outspoken support for a controversial package of new election restrictions has helped him rally the party’s base.

In recent weeks, Kemp has been a mainstay on conservative cable TV shows and enjoyed raucous receptions at grassroots meetings across the state, seemingly dissuading better-known Republican rivals such as former U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, whom Trump once recruited to run.

What’s more, Jones must answer for a long history of controversy in public office that includes allegations of sexual assault that he has denied, along with votes that could alienate Republicans such as Jones’ opposition to a strict anti-abortion “heartbeat” measure that Kemp signed into law in 2019.

Kemp and his allies are eager to portray a contrast between the state’s first lifelong Republican governor since Reconstruction and a party-switching Democrat who only endorsed Trump last year. Bobby Saparow, Kemp’s campaign manager, recited a list of Jones’ stances that included his support for Barack Obama, backing of firearms restrictions and opposition to anti-abortion legislation.

“He is not a Republican, and he is certainly not a conservative,” Saparow said. “Assuming he actually stays in the race, we look forward to contrasting Gov. Kemp’s successful conservative record with Vernon Jones’ liberal, corrupt tenure in public life
To recap: Vernon Jones staying on the sidelines as a Republican to act as a pro-Trump prop, proof that Democrats have failed Black America.  Vernon Jones running for office as a Republican, proof Jones is a traitor, no different from The Hated Barack Obama™.

Enjoy your new "friends", Vernon. They hate you more than Democrats ever will for being a Republican.

Stone Cold Justice

His felony lying to Congress sentence commuted by Trump, Roger Stone thought he got away with it.

The Justice Department on Friday sued Roger Stone, a longtime ally of former President Donald Trump, accusing Stone and his wife, Nydia, of owing nearly $2 million in unpaid federal income taxes and fees.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, says the couple underpaid their income taxes by $1,590,361 from 2007 to 2011. It further says Stone, 68, did not pay his full tax bill in 2018, coming up $407,036 short. The couple, the suit alleges, used a commercial entity to "shield their personal income from enforced collection and fund a lavish lifestyle despite owing nearly $2 million in unpaid taxes, interest and penalties."

Stone, a well-known Republican political operative and a friend of the former president, briefly served as a campaign adviser to Trump.

"This is yet another example of the Democrats weaponizing the Justice Department in violation of the rule of law," Stone said in a statement Friday night. "I will fight these politically motivated charges and I will prevail again."

Stone was on his way to federal prison in July 2020 when then-president Trump commuted his sentence. Stone was sentenced earlier that year to serve 40 months in prison for lying to Congress about his efforts to connect with WikiLeaks in hopes of digging up dirt on Trump's 2016 rival, Hillary Clinton. The lead prosecutor in the case said Stone had lied because the "truth looked bad for Donald Trump." Stone was convicted of all seven counts against him.

Stone said Friday, "This case against me is motivated by blood lust and liberal hysteria over the fact that President Trump saw the clear corruption of my trial and had the strength and the courage to correct this injustice by issuing me a grant of clemency."

The Stones deposited more than $1 million in accounts belonging to a commercial entity, Drake Ventures, instead of personal accounts, thereby frustrating collection efforts, the government said in the filing.

From those accounts, the pair covered a down payment on a Fort Lauderdale condominium, paid for personal expenses and covered some of their tax liabilities, the lawsuit alleges, calling the entity an "alter ego" of the Stones.

Additionally, the filing wants to thwart the Stones' transfer of their $525,000 Florida condominium to an entity known as the Bertran Family Revocable Trust, which the government says is controlled by Nydia Stone and has as beneficiaries their children, Adria Stone and Scott Stone.

A tax lien was being sought against the property, it said. The suit also seeks a judgment for $1,590,361.89.

The government also said the Stones at one point entered into an agreement to cover taxes owed through monthly installments of nearly $20,000, but stopped paying. Additionally, the filing alleges that in 2018, Stone filed his federal income tax return as "a married individual filing separately from his spouse" and owes an additional $407,036.84 for that year alone.
Stone really does deserve a long prison sentence for his role in Trump's Russia collusion. But I'll take the Justice Department and IRS hounding him for every penny and rendering him bankrupt and destitute. Stone can scream all he wants to, but nobody will save him this time.
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