Bachmann First To Sign “Vow” Against Gay Marriage, Pornography, Sharia
Michele Bachmann is the first — and so far, the only — Republican to sign a controversial “Marriage Vow” in which presidentialÂ candidates are asked to pledge to be faithful to their spouse, work to outlaw same-sex marriage, ban pornography, Sharia law, and the federal debt, among other hot-button conservative issues.
Bob Vander Plaats, the head of the ultra-conservative right-wing Christian “family” organization, The Family Leader, has demanded all presidential candidates, including President Obama, sign the pledge, titled, “The Marriage Vow,” by August 1.
READ: Presidential Candidates, Obama Must Sign Anti-Gay Vow – Conservative Org
President Obama’s campaign has refused to respond (rightly so) and Tim Pawlenty says he’s considering it. Former Utah Governor John Huntsman has said he never signs pledges, Ron Paul is said to have “reservations,” and the other GOP candidates have yet to weigh in.
Bachmann has been the focus of heightened media scrutiny recently, as reports have surfaced of her and her husband’s extreme anti-gay hatred. Marcus Bachmann, the Minnesota Congresswoman’s spouse, operates Bachmann and Associates, a “Christian counseling” business that reportedly engages in “ex-gay” or “reparative” therapy that claims to turn homosexuals into heterosexuals.
READ: 10 Questions Bachmann’s Husband Must Answer About “Christian Counseling”
Marcus Bachmann has called gays “barbarians,” who need to be “educated” and “disciplined.”
Rep. Bachmann herself has left a long trail of anti-gay comments.
The Marriage Vowâ€‰â€”â€‰all 3008 wordsâ€‰â€”â€‰includes anti-â€‹gay rhetoric, language that subordinates women, denounces Islam, and scientifically-â€‹questionable â€œfacts.â€ Claiming â€œthe Institution of Marriage in America is in great crisis,â€ Vander Plaats claims, â€œThe purpose of The Marriage Vow is to have on record the personal convictions of each presidential candidate as it relates to the issue of marriage,â€ while demanding that each candidateâ€™s â€œpersonal convictionsâ€â€‰â€”â€‰all 3008 wordsâ€‰â€”Â be written by Bob Vander Plaats.
The Vow forces candidates to denounce Islam, state that homosexuality is a choice and a public health risk, oppose same-sex marriage and vow to protect DOMA.
“Vigorous opposition to any redefinition of the Institution of Marriageâ€‰â€“â€‰faithful monogamy between one man and one womanâ€‰â€“â€‰through statutory-â€‹, bureaucratic-â€‹, or court-â€‹imposed recognition of intimate unions which are bigamous, polygamous, polyandrous, same-â€‹sex, etc.”
The Des Moines Register reports, “Alice Stewart, a Bachmann aide, said the congresswoman had no qualms about signing the Family Leaderâ€™s pledge. â€œShe has been married for over 30 years and has a strong marriage and faith.â€
“Huntsmanâ€™s spokesman Tim Miller said the ex-governor has a policy of not signing any pledges. â€œHe has been a clear supporter of traditonal marriage and will let his record speak for itself.â€
“Drew Ivers, Iowa campaign chairman for Paulâ€™s campaign, said the congressman has concerns about the pledge because it calls for a federal marriage amendment to the U.S. Constitution. â€œHe is very strong pro-traditional marriage, but he doesnâ€™t want the government to dictate and define traditional marriage.” That should be between a man and a woman and the church if they choose to have a church wedding.â€
Vander Plaats has strong ties to Mike Huckabee and failed at an attempt to be the GOP nominee for Governor of Iowa.
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Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor
Donald Trump‘s attorney Evan Corcoran, who allegedly directed another Trump attorney to draft the false statement claiming all classified and sensitive documents had been returned, has been ordered to testify before a grand jury and hand over documents and records to Special Counsel Jack Smith in the Mar-a-Lago classified documents criminal investigation.
Trump appealed U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell’s decision ordering Corcoran to testify and hand over documents, including handwritten notes. The Appeals Court in light speed mode, rejected Trump’s appeal.
Corcoran will be testifying before the grand jury on Friday, CNN reports.
RELATED: ‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs
One former top DOJ official, Brandon Van Grack, says the “Special Counsel is about to get access to the most critical evidence in the case. Should allow DOJ to make a charging decision without significant delay.”
He did not define what “without significant delay” means in terms of days, weeks, or months.
Van Grack served at Main Justice for eleven years, including as a lead prosecutor in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, and later, as the Chief of the DOJ’s Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) Unit.
“The announcement from a panel of three judges in the appeals court – less than a day after Trump sought to put Corcoran’s testimony on hold – adds momentum to the special counsel investigation as it seeks to secure evidence that could make or break a federal criminal case against Trump,” CNN explains. “The Justice Department has successfully argued in court that prosecutors have enough evidence that Trump’s interactions with the lawyer were part of a possible crime that they can pierce the confidentiality of the conversations between the two.”
‘National Security Implications’: Former DOJ Official Speculates on Ruling Ordering Trump Attorney to Hand Over Docs
A former top Dept. of Justice official says a federal judge’s expedited ruling ordering an attorney for Donald Trump to testify against his client before a grand jury and hand over documents very well may be related to “national security.”
U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell ruled that DOJ Special Counsel Jack Smith had successfully made the case Donald Trump may have committed a crime, via his attorneys, in his classified documents case. That finding allowed her to invoke the crime-fraud exception, and order Trump attorney Evan Corcoran to testify before the grand jury investigating the ex-president’s unlawful retention and refusal to return hundreds of classified documents.
Former FBI General Counsel Andrew Weissmann, who also worked for Special Counsel Robert Mueller and headed the DOJ’s Criminal Fraud Section, Wednesday afternoon on MSNBC said it’s possible Judge Howell’s expedited decisions were related to national security.
Tuesday night Judge Howell ordered DOJ to provide information by 6:00 AM Wednesday.
READ MORE: Jim Jordan’s Attack on Manhattan DA Will ‘Backfire’ and Allow Democrats to Expose Coordination With Trump: Columnist
Trump appealed Howell’s ruling, and Wednesday afternoon the Appeals Court denied his appeal related to the documents, Politico reports.
“I’ve never seen anything that quick. It’s very hard to know why. I have to say, to me, when I think about what can be a plausible reason– and this is pure speculation – is that there must be something in the papers that gave the judges concern about national security implications, because it’s such a short timeframe.”
“The reason this is a bombshell is you could end up with Evan Corcoran as a key, fundamental witness against Donald Trump in an obstruction of justice case and a false statements case,” Weissmann adds.
According to Politico, Wednesday’s appeals court ruling “effectively permits the Justice Department to circumvent Trump’s attorney-client privilege after a lower-court judge found that the documents likely contain evidence of a crime.”
NEW: Trump Lawyer’s ‘Critical Evidence’ Will Help DOJ Make Decision to Charge ‘Without Significant Delay’: Former Prosecutor
This article was updated to correctly spell Andrew Weissmann’s last name.
RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
Trump Appeals After Judge Agrees With Special Counsel on Crime-Fraud Exception and Requires His Attorney to Testify
Donald Trump’s attorneys have appealed a ruling that requires one of his lawyers to testify before a grand jury investigating his unlawful removal, retention, and refusal to return classified documents from the White House.
Attorneys for the Special Counsel “said there is evidence of a deliberate effort not to turn over all the material covered by the subpoena,” The Washington Post reports, citing people familiar with the matter.
U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell had reportedly agreed with Special Counsel Smith that there is sufficient evidence proving Donald Trump may have committed a crime via his attorneys, and ruled his attorney must testify before a grand jury. The ruling, which was not made public, was handed down Friday night, NBC News reported Wednesday afternoon.
Judge Howell “ruled in favor of applying the ‘crime fraud’ exception to Trump’s attorney-client privilege and ordered Trump lawyer Evan Corcoran to testify before the federal grand jury.”
READ MORE: ‘On Standby’: Experts Say Manhattan Hush Money Grand Jury Delay ‘Not All That Surprising’
Trump’s attorneys have already appealed the ruling.
“People familiar with the matter said an appeals panel has already begun reviewing the decision, after Trump’s lawyers appealed,” The Washington Post adds. “The extraordinarily quick timeline suggests that the judges — all nominated by Democratic presidents — intend to rule swiftly.”
Trump could take his case all the way to the Supreme Court, but The Post says it’s “not clear he would have a much better chance of success there.”
According to an NBC News report from October, Corcoran directed another Trump attorney, Christina Bobb, to sign the letter claiming a thorough search of Mar-a-Lago had been made and all classified or “sensitive” documents had been returned. That was proven untrue after federal agents, executing a search warrant, recovered hundreds of documents with classified markings.
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