Don’t Let Anyone Normalize January 6
If you can shrug it off as just another incident of Trump talking too much, then you have already signed up for the next incident—and the one after that.
Meanwhile, many in the conservative world are celebrating the January 6 attackers as victims of political persecution, if not as outright heroes. The woman killed at the head of the charge to find and abduct Pence has been elevated as a martyr.
Put like that, it all sounds pretty bad.
That’s why a great deal of effort is being invested in never “putting it like that”—in finding some formula of euphemism and excuse that normalizes Trump’s attempt to keep power despite electoral defeat.
Jane Mayer/New Yorker:
The Big Money Behind the Big Lie
Donald Trump’s attacks on democracy are being promoted by rich and powerful conservative groups that are determined to win at all costs.
Many experts on democratic governance, however, believe that efforts to upend long-settled election practices are what truly threaten to rip the country apart. Chad Campbell, a Democrat who was the minority leader in the Arizona House of Representatives until 2014, when he left to become a consultant in Phoenix, has been shocked by the state’s anti-democratic turn. For several years, he sat next to Karen Fann when she was a member of the House, and in his view she’s gone from being a traditional Republican lawmaker to being a member of “Trump’s cult of personality.” He said, “I don’t know if she believes it or not, or which would be worse.” Arizona, he added, is in the midst of a “nonviolent overthrow in some ways—it’s subtle, and not in people’s face because it’s not happening with weapons. But it’s still a complete overthrow of democracy. They’re trying to disenfranchise everyone who is not older white guys.”
Greg Sargent/Plum Line:
The route to stealing the 2024 election begins with a simple step
But while the money angle is noteworthy, what also deserves attention is the core insight motivating these efforts. It’s that the question of whether voter fraud can or cannot be proved is irrelevant.
Instead, those making such accusations need to create just enough confusion to enable well-placed Republicans to say the actual outcome of a given election is fundamentally unknowable. The coin of the realm is not concocted proof; it’s manufactured uncertainty. This is what will lay the groundwork for attempting to overturn a future election.
This idea is threaded throughout [Jane] Mayer’s piece. For instance, the chairwoman of Arizona’s Republican Party has hailed the sham “audit” of votes there as a “domino” that, once fallen, will potentially inspire more audits in other states.
Democrats plan to highlight ‘middle-class tax cut’ during congressional recess
Democratic lawmakers will spend August touting how President Joe Biden’s agenda delivered direct financial assistance for some Americans, according to a new memo issued Tuesday, as they prepare to face voters during the scheduled congressional recess.
The memo, obtained by McClatchy and co-signed by the party’s three top national political organizations, amounts to an early indication of how Democrats plan to defend their slim congressional majorities ahead of next year’s midterm elections, emphasizing economic issues and highlighting GOP opposition to their policies.
“As members of Congress begin heading to their home states and districts, Democrats are unified around a single message: President Biden and Democrats are delivering results and building back better for the American people — no thanks to Republicans,” said the memo, written by officials from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Democratic National Committee.
Ben Jacobs/Washington Monthly:
Bidenizing the Democrats
In a special election for an open House seat in Ohio, the president scores a victory against his party’s Sanders wing.
Progress on the infrastructure bill advanced Biden’s political interests not only by showing he could, at least in this instance, secure cooperation from Republicans, but also by demonstrating that, at least so far, this bipartisanship isn’t costing him support from the party’s left flank. Meanwhile, in an August 3 House primary that divides the Democrats’ Sanders and Biden wings, Biden appears to be gaining the advantage.
Former Bernie Sanders campaign surrogate Nina Turner was initially considered the favorite in Ohio’s 11th congressional district, a majority black seat encompassing much of the city of Cleveland that became vacant in March when Congresswoman Marcia Fudge resigned to become Biden’s secretary of housing and urban development. Turner is a former Ohio state senator and Cleveland city councilperson. She locked up sufficient early support both locally and nationally that victory seemed assured. In April, she made a television ad buy in April to cement her hold.
But Turner’s campaign fell flat. The limited polling that’s publicly available shows the race is a tossup between Turner and Cuyahoga County Councilperson Shontel Brown. Brown’s pitch is focused on one issue; Nina Turner is not showing enough support for Joe Biden.
DOJ officials rejected colleague’s request to intervene in Georgia’s election certification: Emails
The DOJ officials rejected the request from another department official.
The emails, dated Dec. 28, 2020, show the former acting head of DOJ’s civil division, Jeffrey Clark, circulating a draft letter — which he wanted then-acting attorney general Jeffrey Rosen and acting deputy attorney general Richard Donoghue to sign off on — urging Georgia’s governor and other top officials to convene the state legislature into a special session so lawmakers could investigate claims of voter fraud.
Our Lady of the Lake, more hospitals to mandate COVID-19 vaccine for all staff by December
Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System, the parent organization of Baton Rouge’s Our Lady of the Lake hospitals, announced Tuesday that it will require all staff, contract employees and volunteers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
The implementation of the mandate will occur over several months, concluding in December, system President and CEO Richard Vath said in a statement.
While federal government officials shy away from mandates, the locals will press ahead.
Over and over, the same refrain from people sick with covid: I wish I’d gotten the vaccine
Shelly Wachter was wary of getting vaccinated against the coronavirus because of what she described as the “white noise” surrounding its safety. After she had knee replacement surgery in Omaha a few weeks ago, though, she contracted covid-19, the disease caused by the virus. She was hospitalized and treated with supplemental oxygen, an ordeal she described as “pretty terrifying” to the Lincoln Journal Star.
“Now, knowing what I do, I would get the shot,” Wachter said. Doing so, she said, “could have saved myself and my family so much by having gotten the vaccination.”
Stories like Wachter’s are common these days. While the vast majority of American adults have been vaccinated against the virus, only 6 in 10 are fully vaccinated. Less than half of the population overall is fully vaccinated, in part because those younger than 12 are not yet eligible. Alarmingly, though, 1 in 5 adults 65 or older are not fully vaccinated against the virus that has proved particularly deadly to that age group.
Richard Florida and Arthur Caplan/USA Today:
The unvaccinated don’t have the right to give us COVID. Crack down on them, not us.
Put the onus on those who are unvaccinated by choice. Require them to disclose their status, mask, distance, quarantine and pay more for insurance.
Until now, society has pussy-footed around the right of the unvaccinated to inflict harm. We have implored them to do the right thing, creating incentives like free beer and lottery tickets for them to do so. The Biden administration mandated late last week that federal workers be vaccinated or regularly tested, a wave of businesses announced vaccine requirements, and some Republican officials are imploring the unvaccinated to get it done.
But instead of focusing on how to contain spread from unvaccinated people, the CDC put the onus on the rest of us – advising the vaccinated and especially children to again mask up indoors. Why should kids and the vaccinated bear this burden? The right thing to do is to impose restrictions on those who choose to go unvaccinated.