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Gay Marriage: North Carolina Senate Votes To Put Ban Before Voters

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The North Carolina Senate wasted no time in voting 30-16 to unconstitutionally give voters the ability to vote on the rights of a minority. In May of 2012, voters in a predominantly Republican primary will be asked whether or not they want to write discrimination directly into their constitution. Just yesterday, almost in a stealth operation, a committee of the North Carolina House voted to bring the me sure to the full House, which passed it — without allowing public comments — in just three hours, by a vote of 75-42. The bill was then delivered by messenger to the Senate last night, which today passed it. There is no opportunity for a veto by the Governor, as this is a constitutional ballot issue.

Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) after the vote stated, “We think the people of this state – not judges, bureaucrats, or politicians – should define marriage, which I personally believe should be between one man and one woman. We look forward to eight months of healthy debate before voters decide this issue at the polls.”

Matt Comer of Q Notes reports that “final vote tally, 30-16, barely met the three-fifths majority needed for the measure to pass,” and adds,

Opening debate, primary sponsor Sen. James Forrester (R-Gaston) said he was thankful to get the opportunity to hear his bill.

“This is the eighth year I put in this bill,” Forrester said. “The bill never had a hearing. I’m very happy to have this bill before us at the time.”

Forrester said the amendment was intended to defend the “an institution in our society based upon the complementary male and female loin.”

“Moms and dads are not interchangeable,” Forrester continued. “Two dads don’t make a mom. Two moms don’t make a dad. Children need both a father and a mother.”

Republican Sen. Dan Soucek also stood to defend the bill. He said marriage was under attack and said the bill would help prevent the “breakdown of the family.”

Democrat Ellie Kinnaird, who represents Orange County, refuted Soucek. “Gays aren’t the ones causing damage to marriage,” she said.

Sen. Josh Stein (D-Wake) said this week’s special session was unnecessary.

“Why are we here? Rome is burning. We are on the edge of a double-dip recession,” he said. “Yet, we’ve been called back to this special session to the cost of $50,000 a day not to improve our economy, not even to alleviate the suffering of those down east. No, we are here because some of you want to graft onto our constitution controversial and discriminatory legislation.”

 

“This nasty attack amendment is a tremendous blow to loving, committed same-sex couples across North Carolina who want to make a lifetime commitment to the person they love and to protect their families,” wrote Marc Solomon, National Campaign Director of Freedom to Marry, on the vote. “To try to preempt the conversations taking place across North Carolina about same-sex couples and why marriage matters by cementing discrimination into the constitution is unfair and wrong.  And politically scheming to put such a cruel and discriminatory measure on a low-turnout Republican presidential primary ballot is a sham designed to circumvent the majority of North Carolina voters, who polls say, oppose this amendment and the injury it will inflict not just on families, but the state.”

HRC and Equality North Carolina issued this joint statement:

The bill, as passed, moves the ballot date for the amendment from November 2012 to May 2012. It also retains problematic language defining opposite-sex marriage as the state’s “only domestic legal union,” but adds,  ”This section does not prohibit a private party from entering into contracts with another private party; nor does this section prohibit courts from adjudicating the rights of private parties pursuant to such contracts.” This unclear language may have the effect of prohibiting the state from providing civil unions or domestic partnerships to any couples.  A poll conducted by Elon in 2011 shows 57 percent of North Carolinians support marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships in North Carolina. Only 35 percent oppose any legal recognition for gay and lesbian couples.

 

“This legislative battle may be lost, but the fight goes on,” said Equality North Carolina Interim Executive Director Alex Miller.  “While the proponents of this harmful, divisive, shameful legislation may have succeeded in throwing up a temporary barrier against the inevitable tide of acceptance and equality, our struggle continues and the campaign to defeat this amendment at the ballot box begins today.”

 

“At a time when all North Carolina families are worrying about job losses and cuts in education, it is unconscionable that the legislature add additional stress to a segment of those families,” said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese.  “Neighbors are no longer willing to be pitted against one another over these issues. When ballots are cast in May 2012, we are confident North Carolinians will not be persuaded to limit the rights of their friends and family to such a degree. ”

 

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‘Fight! Fight! Fight!’: RNC’s ‘Chilling’ MAGA Chant Echoes Trump – and ‘1930’s Germany’

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Echoing Donald Trump’s fist-pumping and shout immediately after his ear was nicked by a would-be assassin who killed an innocent bystander Saturday, attendees on the first day of the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee on Monday broke out into chants, yelling, “Fight! Fight! Fight!”

“Having finished the prayer and pledge, and rendition of ‘God Bless America,'” LaPolitics Weekly editor and publisher Jeremy Alford reported, “RNC delegates almost immediately begin chanting the same war cry @realDonaldTrump emitted upon being shot: ‘Fight! Fight! Fight!’ ”

Baptist minister Brian Kaylor, who has a PhD in political communication, is the author or co-author of five books, including “Sacramental Politics: Religious Worship as Political Action,” and “Baptizing America: How Mainline Protestants Helped Build Christian Nationalism.”

He writes: “Delegates yelling ‘fight!’ during RNC shows the danger of what Trump’s instinct was on Saturday.”

READ MORE: Was Trump Hit by a Bullet or Not? Calls Mount for Campaign to Release Medical Records

Attorney and SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah posted a short clip of the moment, remarking: “Bone chilling to see at #RNCConvention people chanting ‘Fight’ in unison with one arm punching in the air. Instantly conjures up rallies from 1930’s Germany. There is no other way to put it.”

The fist-pumping is very visible in the bottom portion of the frame:

Author Stephen Beschloss responded: “Here’s the Trump Republican Party’s ‘unity’ message: Fight.”

Professor of history and fascism and authoritarianism expert Ruth Ben-Ghiat also responded, writing: “You know what to do, Americans. We can avoid this nightmare. Never become resigned or fatalistic. That’s what they want.”

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Greg Bluestein, also an NBC News/MSNBC contributor, also posted a clip, and remarked: “Expect to hear this a lot this week.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

READ MORE: Biden Channels Lincoln in Address on Trump Assassination Attempt: ‘We Are Not Enemies’

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Was Trump Hit by a Bullet or Not? Calls Mount for Campaign to Release Medical Records

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Critics are calling for Donald Trump’s campaign to release his medical records in the wake of Saturday’s attempted assassination, noting that no physician has gone on record to give the American people any information, which some are saying is a lack of transparency.

Trump has stated he was wounded by the shooter’s bullet, but reports have also stated the bleeding on his right ear was from shards of glass from his teleprompter.

“Trump has posted that his ear was pierced by a bullet, but the sad fact is that he’s an unreliable source. News organizations need to wait for more credible confirmation of what happened,” wrote journalist Steven Beschloss on Saturday.

“Why haven’t we heard from the medical staff or others confirming whether Trump was or wasn’t hit by a bullet?” he asked Monday, adding, “If indeed Trump was cut by a piece of glass, then all the talk that he was shot is factually wrong. This needs to be clarified by the authorities involved, no matter whether it contradicts the Trump narrative.”

Investigative journalist Jonathan Greenberg on Monday asked, “What is Trump hiding?”

READ MORE: ‘Just the First Step’: Trump Declares ‘Uniting Our Nation’ Means Ending All Cases Against Him

“Did Trump actually get shot in the ear? If that’s the case, why has he not released the medical report & images of the wound? Why should we trust the most successful liar & con man of all time, who has lied about all his medical records so far?”

Professor of journalism Jeff Jarvis on Monday also asked, “why have we not seen a medical report from the hospital that treated Trump? Why have we not seen reporters vocally demanding it?”

He added: “Let’s at least try to demand transparency from the campaign and doctors. I don’t see anyone trying.”

“Trump was taken to Butler Memorial Hospital close to where the attack happened, but no details have been officially released,” The Daily Beast reported Monday.

Calling it a “Mystery,”  The Beast reports, “the Trump camp has not disclosed what kinds of tests the former president underwent, how he was treated and for what types of injuries, and if there will be follow-ups. While such details may seem insignificant, the American public tends to expect maximum clarity about presidential health, as the public storm over President Joe Biden’s mental acuity, one led by members of his own party, demonstrated.”

The lack of transparency into Trump’s health after the assassination attempt is in line with the presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s refusal to release full information surrounding his overall health in general.

While President Joe Biden has released a good deal of data from his doctors on his health, Trump has released very little.

READ MORE: As Cannon Dismisses Trump Classified Docs Case Experts Pin Blame on Clarence Thomas

In 2020, when then-President Trump contracted COVID, reporters demanded information from doctors, which was very limited at first, and, as CNN reported, “created confusion.” Part of that confusion was in the timeline of events. It has been reported that Trump, according to at least three of his close aides, had tested positive for the deadly coronavirus just days before one of the 2020 presidential debates, and appeared just feet way from his opponent, now President Joe Biden without announcing his status.

Trump has a history of hiding his medical status.

Even before he was elected, in 2015, Trump only a provided a short letter from Dr. Harold N. Bornstein, who later revealed Trump had dictated to the doctor what to write.

“He dictated that whole letter. I didn’t write that letter,” Bornstein told CNN in 2018. “I just made it up as I went along.”

NBC News in 2018 reported that Bornstein also revealed Trump’s team had “raided” his office and removed all his medical records.

“Bornstein told NBC News that he felt ‘raped, frightened and sad’ when Keith Schiller and another ‘large man’ came to his office to collect the president’s records on the morning of Feb. 3, 2017. At the time, Schiller, who had long worked as Trump’s bodyguard, was serving as director of Oval Office operations at the White House.”

READ MORE: Biden Channels Lincoln in Address on Trump Assassination Attempt: ‘We Are Not Enemies’

 

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‘Just the First Step’: Trump Declares ‘Uniting Our Nation’ Means Ending All Cases Against Him

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Donald Trump, declaring his surviving Saturday’s attempted assassination a “miracle,” reportedly has changed his upcoming address to this week’s Republican National Convention to promoting “unity.” But unlike President Joe Biden’s Oval Office speech Sunday night urging America come together, the ex-president is defining national unity as everyone agreeing all legal and civil cases against him are baseless “Witch Hunts.”

Sunday afternoon, less than 24 hours after a 20-year old registered Republican with an AR-15 style rifle unloaded eight bullets in the ex-president’s direction, causing his ear to be grazed, possibly by schraptnal or glass, while killing a 50-year old supporter at a rally in the stands behind him, Trump posted just two words to his Truth Social account: “UNITE AMERICA!”

“The former president has told multiple outlets he wants to focus on unifying the country after surviving an assassination attempt,” Rolling Stone reports. “As Trump’s allies and other prominent Republican commentators attempt to weaponize the shooting into a political cudgel against Democrats to silence criticism of Trump and his track record endorsing political violence, it may only be a matter of time before the former president slips back into his old habits.”

Monday morning, barely one hour after U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee in Florida, handed down her ruling entirely dismissing the Espionage Act/classified documents case against the ex-president, Trump expanded on his definition of unity: ending “ALL the Witch Hunts.”

RELATED: As Cannon Dismisses Trump Classified Docs Case Experts Pin Blame on Clarence Thomas

“As we move forward in Uniting our Nation after the horrific events on Saturday, this dismissal of the Lawless Indictment in Florida should be just the first step, followed quickly by the dismissal of ALL the Witch Hunts — The January 6th Hoax in Washington, D.C., the Manhattan D.A.’s Zombie Case, the New York A.G. Scam, Fake Claims about a woman I never met (a decades old photo in a line with her then husband does not count), and the Georgia ‘Perfect’ Phone Call charges. The Democrat Justice Department coordinated ALL of these Political Attacks, which are an Election Interference conspiracy against Joe Biden’s Political Opponent, ME. Let us come together to END all Weaponization of our Justice System, and Make America Great Again!”

Veteran journalist Brian J. Karem responded to Trump’s post, writing: “So much for uniting people. That didn’t last a single day.”

U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) added, “I knew this mad man would soon be back. He’s incapable of unifying peanut butter and jelly. For Trump it’s always been me, me, me first (& only).”

Media columnist Justin Baragona noted, “The new Trump tone lasted a record 36 hours.”

READ MORE: Biden Channels Lincoln in Address on Trump Assassination Attempt: ‘We Are Not Enemies’

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