Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Last Call For The Circus Of The Damned, Con't

GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy was the biggest loser on Tuesday, unable to secure enough of his own caucus to reach the 218 mark for electing a House Speaker, and in fact he was nowhere close, with a good 20 defectors.

The House voted Wednesday to adjourn for the second time of the day — as Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said he wanted more time to negotiate after six rounds of voting on the speakership resulted in deadlock. It will resume at 12 p.m. ET on Thursday.

Driving the news: “I think it's probably best to let people work through some more. I don't think a vote tonight does any difference but votes in the future will," McCarthy said before the second vote to adjourn.He lost three speaker election bids on Tuesday and three more on Wednesday.

Why it matters: It's the first time since 1923 that the speaker vote has required multiple ballots and it's unclear when — or how — lawmakers will eventually break the deadlock.

The latest: The California Republican's latest defeats came hours after former President Trump urged Republicans to back him — and with his colleagues voting instead for Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) multiple times.20 Republicans voted for Donalds during each round Wednesday. Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-Ind.), who voted for McCarthy three times on Tuesday, voted present Wednesday.

Republicans started looking for other options this afternoon. Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) — who backed McCarthy over six ballots — told CNN: "He either needs to make a deal to bring the 19 or 20 over, or he needs to step aside and give somebody a chance to do that." Other Republicans are waiting in the wings as they struggle with this same calculus, GOP lawmakers and aides tell Axios.

It's abundantly clear that McCarthy won't get enough GOP votes to be Speaker. It's unclear if there's an Republican who actually can.

Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.) on Wednesday said “preliminary talks” had begun with Democrats about supporting a “consensus candidate” for Speaker.

Bacon told CNN, however, he wanted to hold back on the details of the conversations so as to not get ahead of the negotiations.

“There are preliminary talks, but we don’t want to go too fast on this because that then hijacks what Kevin is trying to do, and we want to support Kevin, he’s worked hard to get this,” Bacon said.

Kevin's already sold his soul to Trump.  But maybe, just maybe, there's someone on the GOP side willing to cut a real deal with the Dems and blindside McCarthy, the holdouts, and a lot of the circus clowns to boot.

I'm not saying it'll happen. I'm not saying there's anyone on the GOP side I'd trust to make this happen.

What I'm saying is Kevin McCarthy won't be Speaker. 

We're back at it tomorrow...

Our Little White Supremacist Domestic Terrorism Problem, Con't

Right-wing domestic terrorists continue to call for violent sedition in order to take control of the country, this time in Colorado.
A far-right conservative leader known for his gun shop’s reality TV show is warning that “it’s almost time to switch from ballots to bullets.”

Rich Wyatt, president of Jefferson County’s Mountain Republicans Club, made the suggestion of coming political violence on a December 28 episode of the conservative podcast, The Chuck and Julie Show.

“It’s almost time to switch from ballots to bullets. Because that’s what wins the hearts and minds,” Wyatt said. “And there’s no arguing with a bullet. You can argue about ballots, but you can’t argue with bullets.”

When reached by phone on Tuesday, Wyatt declined to say who specifically would be targeted by the political violence. Wyatt also declined to say whether he plans to participate in political violence. As a convicted felon, Wyatt is prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition.

Wyatt declined to answer questions via phone or email.

“I’d be happy to come on your show,” Wyatt said. “But if you’re afraid to do that, that’d be fine with me.”

Wyatt, of Evergreen, is best known for the Discovery Channel show “American Guns,” which featured his Wheat Ridge gun shop, Gunsmoke, from 2011 to 2012.

In 2018, Wyatt was convicted and sentenced to 78 months in federal prison plus three years of supervised release for conspiracy to deal in firearms without a license and tax fraud. Wyatt appealed the conviction and was given one year in prison and one year of supervised release. His supervised release ended in June 2021.

Wyatt was ordered to forfeit nearly 500 firearms at sentencing.

Wyatt unsuccessfully appealed to former President Donald Trump for a pardon in December 2020, which would have restored Wyatt’s firearms rights.
We have convicted Republican felons calling for armed sedition, openly.
The failure to put multiple Republicans in prison after January 6th continues to be a threat to the nation's stability, and the longer it takes to do that, the more chance there is of a major domestic terrorism even larger than January 6th. 

Like A Troubled Bridge Over Waters, Con't

President Biden will be in town today to kick off the new year and to remind everyone why he was elected as he visits the Brent Spence Bridge, with work funded by his historic infrastructure bill beginning later this year to replace the nearly 70-year old structure. 
President Joe Biden is visiting northern Kentucky on Wednesday to tout spending more than $1 billion in federal grants to improve congestion on the aging Brent Spence Bridge.

The bridge links Covington and downtown Cincinnati over the Ohio River along Interstate 75, one of the busiest trucking routes in America.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced last week it would award $1.635 billion for the construction of a companion bridge to help unclog bridge traffic by separating truck traffic from local vehicles. This is from an infrastructure law Congress passed in late 2021 to help repair or rebuild 10 of the most economically significant bridges in the country.

“The grant to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet will fund improvements to the Brent Spence Bridge, which is currently the second worst truck bottleneck in the nation and carries more than $400 billion in freight per year over the Ohio River,” reads a news release Wednesday from DOT.

The project also will improve “delays in the movement of freight that currently raise costs for American families.”

President Biden is expected to fly into Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport around 11:25 a.m.

Expect traffic delays on I-275 and I-71/75, as well as streets around the Brent Spence Bridge in Covington.

The president will hold a news conference near the bridge around lunchtime, making a rare joint appearance with Senate Republican Majority leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

Other elected officials plan to attend, adding to the bipartisan mix of the event: Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, former Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, and Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, a Republican

I'll of course be following the project over the next couple of years. Remember, proposing that the companion bridge be built with toll money is what cost Matt Bevin reelection. Keeping the bridge toll-free might get Beshear another term.
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