Gay conservatives, like LOGO-TV’s Taylor Garrett of the reality showÂ “A-List: Dallas,” along with GOProud co-founders Chris Barron and Jimmy LaSalviaÂ have spent a great deal of time recently attacking gay liberals. Now, it appears, gay conservatives are themselves being attacked — physically — by gay liberals, according to stories they have reported to the media. But the question is being asked, do gay liberals really hate gay conservatives, and do they hate them enough to actually physically gay bash them?
â€œThe Democrats want me to live on their plantation as their slave, because Iâ€™m a gay person… And I refuse to do that,”Â Taylor Garrett said, in an exclusive report he gave to Tucker Carlson’s “The Daily Caller.” Reporter Alex Pappas adds that Garrett “was punched to the ground and bloodied Friday night by someone vandalizing his car because heâ€™s a gay conservative associated with commentator Ann Coulter,” and writes that Garrett “was attacked outside a birthday party in Dallas after finding a vandal scratching ‘Fâ€“k Coulter’ on the side of his car.”
This is the second time Garrett says he’s been the victim of an anti-conservative attack by a liberal.
Towleroad’s Brandon K. Thorp, in, “Gay TV Star Taylor Garrett Victim Of Anti-Republican Vandals. Again,”Â writes that “[a]lmost exactly one month ago, Garrett reported that a rock was thrown through one of his windows by vandals unknown, along with a note which read:
“Who the f*** do you think you are? You are not A-list. More like Z-list. You are nothing but a nelly twink trying to get attention by calling yourself a republican. You are nothing but an embarassment to the gay community. Watch your back you pathetic mother f***ing twink.”
Thorp notes that the “timbre of that message is not dissimilar to the one Garrett’s Friday assailant allegedly carved into his car, and adds, “After last month’s rock-throwing incident, it was widely speculated (including here at Towleroad) that Garrett had staged the vandalism to boost publicity for his show.”
Not everyone in the LGBT blogosphere is quite as delicate about Garrett’s assault reports.
Will Kohler at Back 2 StonewallÂ isÂ quick to repeatedly state, “IF this is true, its a horrible thing. and of course we denounce it as anyone in their right mind should.Â Physical violence should never be used against anyone.Â ” But Kohler also prods, “the question remains. IsÂ Taylor Garrett and GOProud turning into ‘The Boyâ€™s Who Call HomoCon Hate Crimes’?”
But this time once again there are many strange aspects to Garrettâ€™s claim.
Garret claims thatÂ â€œâ€(he) went out to his car to get a birthday present that he left in it and a large man stood up and decked him in his left eye. Garrett fell to the ground. He also scraped up his body by falling into some glass that was next to his carâ€.Â ButÂ The Daily CallerÂ claims that the pictures that they have, (and that they did not originally publish with the article) show â€œGarrett with a bloody ear and blood covering his white shirt.â€
After initially reading about the â€œincidentâ€Â last night and Garrettâ€™s claims, I checkedÂ Garrettâ€™s Twitter account as well as both Jimmy LaSalviaâ€™s and Chris Barronâ€™s ofÂ GOProud.Â Garrett hadnâ€™t tweeted in 24 hours, and LaSalvia and Barron had both only tweetedÂ onceÂ aboutÂ what had happened to Garrett and that wasÂ HOURS AFTERÂ Â The Daily CallerÂ printed the story which is very unlike them.Â AndÂ The CallerÂ is also coincidentally whereÂ Chris Barron wrote an article called the â€œGay Gestapoâ€ just the day before whining about the intolerance of the â€œgay left.â€
At this point who knows what to believe and I leave it up to you.
On Twitter, Kohler also writes, “Taylor Garrett of the A List: Dallas &Â
#GOProudÂ is this generations HomoCon version of Tawana Brawley.”
And London’s Daily Mail adds that “critics have claimed that Garrett staged the incident in an attempt to collect media attention.”
The Dallas Voice earlier this month profiled Jimmy LaSalvia, and his thoughts on the first Taylor Garrett incident:
As executive director of the national gay conservative (or â€œhomoconâ€) group GOProud, LaSalvia said heâ€™s grown accustomed to attacks from what he calls â€œthe gay left.â€
â€œThe gay left is the most hateful, intolerant, disgusting group of people Iâ€™ve ever come across in my lifetime, and everything we do is criticized by them,â€ LaSalvia told Dallas Voice. â€œThey hate gay conservatives more than anything in the world, and I donâ€™t know why. Itâ€™s just a matter of time before violence like that happens.â€
Coincidentally â€” or not, depending on who you believe â€” LaSalvia had lunch with Garrett in Los Angeles just prior to the rock-throwing incident being reported.
They were joined by conservative pundit Ann Coulter â€” who serves as honorary chair of GOProudâ€™s Advisory Council â€” and Logo filmed the rendezvous for an upcoming episode ofÂ The A-List.
The timing led some in the gay blogosphere to suggest that LaSalvia put Garrett up to falsifying his report about the rock, which allegedly shattered a window at his apartment in the Dallas Design District â€” perhaps to generate hype prior to the premiere of the show.
Garrett is not the only gay conservative who says he’s been the victim of hate crime — from gays or straights. GOProud co-founder Jimmy LaSalvia himself in July said he was attacked in Washington, D.C. by a group of teens, one of whom yelled, “fucking faggot!”
“The attacker and a few of the others with him ‘puffed up their chests and were clearly ready to continue the attack’,” the Washington Blade reported LaSalvia told them. “But seconds later, the group fled the scene after he kept his hand inside his backpack, ‘allowing them to wonder if I was reaching for a gun’.â€
LaSalvia used the incident to rail against hate crime legislation and gun regulation in the mainstream and LGBT press.
LaSalvia, and fellow GOProud co-founder Chris Barron have spent a lot of timeÂ in the mainstream and LGBT press also railing against gay liberals, and on social media sites like Twitter as well.
And while Chris Barron’s anti-gay-Left screeds on Twitter are frequent, for no apparent reason LaSalvia earlier this year lashed out at me, for no apparent reason, writing via Twitter, “the gay-left is the most hateful intolerant group in the country…it’s nothing new, just the way they are.”
Blogger Joe Jervis, aka Joe.My. God.,Â has done an excellent job of documenting the GOProud group’s incessant attacks on the Left. Just search his blog for Chris Barron or Jimmy LaSalvia and you’ll see. Here one example fromÂ June 2, 2011:
“Letâ€™s be honest, the left doesnâ€™t hate me because I am mean or brash or too aggressive â€“ the same label can be applied to many of my critics. No, the left hates me because I have the audacity to stand up to them. They hate me because I am a conservative who happens to be gay. They hate me because I wonâ€™t be bullied by them. They hate me because I have dared to wander off the liberal plantation, because I refuse to play the victim card, and because I have rejected their failed big government agenda. So if the left is looking for an apology for things I say on twitter or the things I write on my blog or for statements I make on TV, they wonâ€™t get one. Indeed, they can expect more of the same.” – GOProud chairmanÂ Chris Barron, writing on his personal blog.
Additionally, Towleroad quotes Chris Barron late last week, discussing the Brett Ratner Oscars issue:
“Instead of agreeing to be sent to GLAADâ€™s re-education camp, Ratner should have stood up to the gay Gestapo. He apologized for what he said, he admitted it was stupid, and agreeing to become the latest pawn in GLAADâ€™s never-ending ideological warfare is akin to negotiating with terrorists. Every time Ratner or another Hollywood idiot gives into GLAAD, they are simply encouraging GLAAD to continue its partisan jihad.”
And make no mistake. There are LGBT allies and supporters on the Right who are critical of the GOProud group as well.
GOProud seems to be in favor of everything conservative while also ignoring (or at least, strongly downplaying) anything related to human rights for GLBT Americans.
I also find GOProudâ€™s supportÂ of Ann Coulter and Donald Trump disappointing, particularly when Ms. Coulter is part of the problem with her toxic rhetoric rather than being part of the solution. She contributes nothing to enlighten debate and apparently exist toÂ throw verbal grenades to the cheers ofÂ her hyper-partisan readers.
Honorable ladies and honorable gentlemen should be able to disagree without being disagreeable â€“ and this goesÂ for gay activist on both the left and on the right.
GOProudâ€™s criticism of liberal gay activist is both unnecessary and distasteful â€“ it also makes it hard to focus on the real enemies of freedom. My quarrel is not with liberal activist who are also agitating for my freedom â€“ and I will work with them if it will help secure freedom for all Americans.
But GOProud has not been behaving like civilized people.Â GOProudâ€™s Chris Barron once tweeted â€œThe Gay Left = The American Taliban. Hateful, angry and dumb as shit.â€ Chris Barron has also tweeted personal insults about fellow pro-gay rights conservatives Andrew Sullivan and Meghan McCain.
Chris Barron has become a serious liability to GOProudâ€™s being accepted as a legitimate, credible, professional organization. Itâ€™s time for Mr. Barron to go. GOProud is in need of a serious reorganization. One simply cannot build coalitions when someone is tweeting personal attacks on our natural allies in the struggle for equality.
Lastly, one comment: Isn’t it a shame that two minorities, gay conservatives and gay liberals, can’t find common ground and work together on issues that affect both groups? Sadly, when one of those groups include GOProud, that seems impossible. Their initial, default conversation piece is always attacking the gay Left, as evidenced in this video. How long does it take Chris Barron to go after the gay Left, which has little to do with the topic at hand?
The Log Cabin Republicans have done a far better job of building coalitions.
So, does the gay Left, do gay Democrats and liberals and progressives, really hate gay conservatives, gay Republicans, and do they hate them enough to gay bash them? Perhaps that’s an answer for law enforcement officials to determine.
There certainly do appear, however, to be more attacks proudly hurled at the gay Left fromÂ the gay Right than from the gay Left at the gay Right.
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Santos Campaign Can No Longer Raise or Spend Money After Treasurer Officially Calls It Quits: NYT
Enmeshed in a web of deceit and possibly under federal criminal investigation, U.S. Rep. George Santos (R-NY) is now apparently unable to lawfully spend money or accept donations via his political campaign, which reportedly now may also be in violation of FEC rules.
On Tuesday the embattled freshman Republican announced he was temporarily stepping down from his committee assignments, reportedly after a conversation with Speaker Kevin McCarthy. Before the end of the day his campaign treasurer filed official paperwork notifying the Federal Election Commission she had resigned.
“Nancy Marks’s resignation effectively leaves the Santos campaign unable to raise or spend money and in seeming violation of federal rules,” The New York Times reports, calling her his “longtime campaign treasurer and trusted aide.”
“Mr. Santos’s financial operations, which are the subject of several complaints filed with the F.E.C. and are being investigated by local, state and federal law enforcement,” The Times adds. “It also leaves the Santos campaign in disarray, effectively rendering it unable to raise or spend money and placing it in seeming violation of F.E.C. rules.”
In fact, FEC rules state: “If a committee’s treasurer is absent, the committee cannot make expenditures or accept contributions unless it has designated an assistant treasurer or designated agent on the committee’s Statement of Organization.”
The resignation comes after last week’s stunning report revealing that Santos, or his campaign, amended FEC filings to indicate the $700,000 he had claimed to have personally loaned his campaign had not actually come from his personal funds.
Unlike political candidates, campaign treasurers are held to an actual standard of truth, and can be personally – and legally – liable if they report false information.
FEC rules also state, “the treasurer can be named and found liable in his or her personal capacity if he or she knowingly and willfully violates the Act, recklessly fails to fulfill duties imposed by the law, or intentionally deprives himself or herself of the operative facts giving rise to the violation.”
Santos may find it difficult to hire a new treasurer: “Even when an enforcement action alleges violations that occurred during the term of a previous treasurer, the Commission usually names the current treasurer as a respondent in the action.”
The Times adds, “The lack of clarity over who, if anyone, is operating as Mr. Santos’s treasurer has already caused confusion. On Tuesday, a joint fund-raising committee associated with Mr. Santos filed paperwork to end its operations. Ms. Marks’s signature was on the paperwork, even though she had resigned as the committee’s treasurer the week before.”
Marks’ resignation also comes after someone affiliated with the Santos campaign falsely listed a well-known Republican treasurer on the official FEC forms as the treasurer for his campaign. As one expert put it, that’s a “big no-no,” and “completely illegal.”
Another SCOTUS Scandal: Chief Justice’s Spouse Makes Millions Placing Attorneys at Top Law Firms That Argue Before the Court
The highly controversial and highly unpopular U.S. Supreme Court isn’t just facing a historic loss of confidence, it’s now facing yet another ethics scandal that is likely to lower even further public opinion of the far-right institution that in under two decades has seen its approval rating slashed.
Although it will not hear arguments, the issue before the Supreme Court and the American people’s view of it, is, should a Justice’s spouse – in this case the spouse of Chief Justice John Roberts – be able to make millions of dollars recruiting attorneys who are placed into top law firms that argue cases before it?
That’s the latest allegation, and already a spokesperson for the Court has issued a statement denying any ethical violations.
The New York Times reports that “a former colleague of Mrs. Roberts has raised concerns that her recruiting work poses potential ethics issues for the chief justice. Seeking an inquiry, the ex-colleague has provided records to the Justice Department and Congress indicating Mrs. Roberts has been paid millions of dollars in commissions for placing lawyers at firms — some of which have business before the Supreme Court, according to a letter obtained by The New York Times.”
Jane Sullivan Roberts left a law firm where she was a partner after her spouse was confirmed as Chief Justice.
“Mrs. Roberts, according to a 2015 deposition,” The Times reports, “said that a significant portion of her practice was devoted to helping senior government lawyers land jobs at law firms and that the candidates’ names were almost never disclosed.”
Documents in that case “list six-figure fees credited to Mrs. Roberts for placing partners at law firms — including $690,000 in 2012 for one such match. The documents do not name clients, but Mr. Price recalled her recruitment of one prominent candidate, Ken Salazar, then interior secretary under President Barack Obama, to WilmerHale, a global firm that boasts of arguing more than 125 times before the Supreme Court.”
That case involves “a former colleague of Mrs. Roberts,” Kendal Price, a 66-year-old Boston lawyer, who “has raised concerns that her recruiting work poses potential ethics issues for the chief justice.”
“According to the letter,” sent by Price to DOJ and Congress, which the Times reports it obtained, “Mr. Price was fired in 2013 and sued the firm, as well as Mrs. Roberts and another executive, over his dismissal.”
The Times cites two legal experts, one who sees no ethical concerns with the situation, and one who does.
But critics are expressing great concern over this latest ethics issue, as they have been for years.
Doug Lindner, Advocacy Director for Judiciary & Democracy for the League of Conservation Voters, pointing to the Times’ report, remarked: “Another day, another ethics concern about another life-tenured conservative justice on the most powerful court in the world, which has no binding ethics rules.”
Indeed, the lack of a Supreme Court code of ethics has been repeatedly condemned for years, including by some of the nation’s top critics.
On Sept. 1, 2022, The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin tweeted out her opinion piece: “Ginni Thomas pressed Wisconsin lawmakers to overturn Biden’s 2020 victory .. just another insurrectionist.”
Norman Ornstein, an emeritus scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and a contributing editor for the Atlantic, responded:
“Another reminder of how unethical is Justice Clarence Thomas, while Chief Justice Roberts turns a blind eye and continues to resist a code of ethics for a Supreme Court now distrusted by a majority of Americans. This defines the Roberts Court.”
The following month Ornstein slammed the Roberts Court once again.
“It is a stain on the Supreme Court that Chief Justice Roberts refuses to support a Judicial Code of Ethics, and stands by silently while Clarence Thomas flouts ethical standards over and over and over,” Ornstein charged.
Less than one month later he again unleashed on Roberts.
“Roberts is culpable,” he tweeted. “He has resisted over and over applying the Judicial Code of Ethics to the Supreme Court. This is Alito’s court, and it is partisan and corrupt.”
Ornstein is far from the Court’s only critic.
“If Chief Justice Roberts really wanted to address Supreme Court ethics, he would have immediately worked to implement a Code of Conduct after Clarence Thomas failed to recuse from cases involving January 6th despite having a clear conflict of interest,” the government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington tweeted a year ago in May. The following month CREW published an analysis titled: “Chief Justice John Roberts is wrong: the American judicial system is facing a major ethics crisis.”
Meanwhile, in late November Politico reported that Democrats in Congress were outraged at the Roberts Court.
“Two senior Democrats in Congress are demanding that Chief Justice John Roberts detail what, if anything, the Supreme Court has done to respond to recent allegations of a leak of the outcome of a major case the high court considered several years ago,” PoliticoJosh Bernstein reported, referring to the leak of the Dobbs decision that overturned the Roe v. Wade decision – itself a massive ethics crisis for the Court.
“Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) are also interested in examining claims about a concerted effort by religious conservatives to woo the justices through meals and social engagements. They wrote to Roberts on Sunday, making clear that if the court won’t investigate the alleged ethical breaches, lawmakers are likely to launch their own probe.”
Whitehouse and Johnson “also criticized the high court’s response to a letter they sent Roberts in September, seeking information about the court’s reaction to reports in POLITICO and Rolling Stone about a yearslong campaign to encourage favorable decisions from the justices by bolstering their religiosity.”
Nothing has changed.
When the Roberts Court earlier this month announced its lengthy investigation did not find the draft Dobbs decision leaker but also did not include the Justices themselves, Stokes Prof. of Law at NYU Law School Melissa Murray, an MSNBC host, tweeted, “This is a Roberts Court leitmotif–The Chief loves to handle things–even big things–in-house. Ethics issues? No need to get involved, Congress. We’ll sort it out ourselves. Leak needs investigating? No need to call in an actual investigative body, the Marshal will handle it.”
Pulitzer prize winning New York Times investigative reporter Jodi Kantor, pointing to how the Justices were not thoroughly investigated during the leak probe, in earlier this month said: “Last week the court released statements that confirmed the gap between how the justices and everyone else were treated.”
“The whole situation amplifies a major question about the court: are these nine people, making decisions that affect all of us, accountable to anyone?”
‘Can Be Used Against You’: Trump Took Big Risk Pleading the Fifth 400 Times in Deposition Says Legal Expert
A newly released video shows Donald Trump pleading the Fifth Amendment hundreds of times in a deposition, and a legal expert explained how that could be used against him in court.
The former president was finally hauled in to testify last year in the $25 million fraud lawsuit filed against the Trump Organization by New York attorney Letitia James, and he exercised his constitutional right against self-incrimination nearly 450 times — but MSNBC legal analyst Andrew Weissmann said the move carried potential risk in a civil case.
“I agree with him on the point of taking the Fifth,” Weissmann said. “It’s important to remember everyone has a right to the Fifth if a truthful answer would tend to incriminate you. In a civil case, it can be used against you, unlike in a criminal case.”
“One other thing I would disagree is when he is saying there’s this witch hunt, he left out jurors,” Weissmann added. “The Trump Organizations went to trial, they had their day in court. They could present all of their evidence, [and] 12 jurors, that’s everyday citizens, found beyond a reasonable doubt that there was a multi-year tax conspiracy that his organizations were involved in, and there was evidence he knew about it as would make sense. That’s one more reason for him to be asserting the Fifth Amendment.”
Image via Shutterstock
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