President Barack Obama today in Germany talked about the importance of human rights and LGBT civil rights as he explained his plan to reduce nuclear weapons. Speaking at the historic Brandenburg Gate in sweltering temperatures past 90 degrees, a jacket-less President, in a rare moment actually showed sweat on his forehead. He told the crowd of thousands, who cheered throughout his remarks:
“I’d suggest that peace with justice begins with the example we set here at home, for we know from our own histories that intolerance breeds injustice. Whether it’s based on race, or religion, gender or sexual orientation, we are stronger when all our people — no matter who they are or what they look like — are granted opportunity, and when our wives and our daughters have the same opportunities as our husbands and our sons.”
“When we respect the faiths practiced in our churches and synagogues, our mosques and our temples, we’re more secure. When we welcome the immigrant with his talents or her dreams, we are renewed. When we stand up for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters and treat their love and their rights equally under the law, we defend our own liberty as well.Â We are more free when all people can pursue their own happiness.”
The President also talked about civil rights in a broader sense:
As free peoples, we stated our convictions long ago. As Americans, we believe that â€œallÂ men are created equalâ€ with the right to life and liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And as Germans, you declared in your Basic Law that â€œthe dignity of man is inviolable.â€ Around the world, nations have pledged themselves to a Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which recognizes the inherent dignity and rights ofÂ allÂ members of our human family.
And this is what was at stake here in Berlin all those years. And because courageous crowds climbed atop that wall, because corrupt dictatorships gave way to new democracies, because millions across this continent now breathe the fresh air of freedom, we can say, here in Berlin, here in Europe — our values won.Â Openness won.Â Tolerance won.Â And freedom won here in Berlin.
Watch the video which begins with his remarks on human rights, justice, and piece. See the full video at YouTube.
Note: Video may appear cloudy — it was filmed through bulletproof glass.
Here, the complete text of President Obama’s remarks at the Brandenburg Gate.
PRESIDENT OBAMA:Â Hello, Berlin!Â (Applause.)Â Thank you, Chancellor Merkel, for your leadership, your friendship, and the example of your life — from a child of the East to the leader of a free and united Germany.
As Iâ€™ve said, Angela and I donâ€™t exactly look like previous German and American leaders.Â But the fact that we can stand here today, along the fault line where a city was divided, speaks to an eternal truth:Â No wall can stand against the yearning of justice, the yearnings for freedom, the yearnings for peace that burns in the human heart.Â (Applause.)
Mayor Wowereit, distinguished guests, and especially the people of Berlin and of Germany — thank you for this extraordinarily warm welcome.Â In fact, it’s so warm and I feel so good that I’m actually going to take off my jacket, and anybody else who wants to, feel free to.Â (Applause.)Â We can be a little more informal among friends.Â (Applause.)
As your Chancellor mentioned, five years ago I had the privilege to address this city as senator. Â Today, I’m proud to return as President of the United States. Â (Applause.)Â And I bring with me the enduring friendship of the American people, as well as my wife, Michelle, and Malia and Sasha.Â (Applause.)Â You may notice that they’re not here.Â The last thing they want to do is to listen to another speech from me.Â (Laughter.)Â So they’re out experiencing the beauty and the history of Berlin.Â And this history speaks to us today.
Here, for thousands of years, the people of this land have journeyed from tribe to principality to nation-state; through Reformation and Enlightenment, renowned as a â€œland of poets and thinkers,â€ among them Immanuel Kant, who taught us that freedom is the â€œunoriginated birthright of man, and it belongs to him by force of his humanity.â€
Here, for two centuries, this gate stood tall as the world around it convulsed — through the rise and fall of empires; through revolutions and republics; art and music and science that reflected the height of human endeavor, but also war and carnage that exposed the depths of manâ€™s cruelty to man.
It was here that Berliners carved out an island of democracy against the greatest of odds.Â As has already been mentioned, they were supported by an airlift of hope, and we are so honored to be joined by Colonel Halvorsen, 92 years old — the original â€œcandy bomber.â€ Â We could not be prouder of him.Â (Applause.)Â I hope I look that good, by the way, when I’m 92.Â (Laughter.)
During that time, a Marshall Plan seeded a miracle, and a North Atlantic Alliance protected our people. Â And those in the neighborhoods and nations to the East drew strength from the knowledge that freedom was possible here, in Berlin — that the waves of crackdowns and suppressions might therefore someday be overcome.
Today, 60 years after they rose up against oppression, we remember the East German heroes of June 17th.Â When the wall finally came down, it was their dreams that were fulfilled.Â Their strength and their passion, their enduring example remind us that for all the power of militaries, for all the authority of governments, it isÂ citizensÂ who choose whether to be defined by a wall, or whether to tear it down.Â (Applause.)
And weâ€™re now surrounded by the symbols of a Germany reborn. Â A rebuilt Reichstag and its glistening glass dome. Â An American embassy back at its historic home onÂ PariserÂ Platz.Â (Applause.)Â And this square itself, once a desolate no manâ€™s land, is now open to all. Â So while I am not the first American President to come to this gate, I am proud to stand on its Eastern side to pay tribute to the past.Â (Applause.)
For throughout all this history, the fate of this city came down to a simple question:Â Will we live free or in chains?Â Under governments that uphold our universal rights, or regimes that suppress them?Â In open societies that respect the sanctity of the individual and our free will, or in closed societies that suffocate the soul?
As free peoples, we stated our convictions long ago. As Americans, we believe that â€œallÂ men are created equalâ€ with the right to life and liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Â And as Germans, you declared in your Basic Law that â€œthe dignity of man is inviolable.â€ Â (Applause.)Â Around the world, nations have pledged themselves to a Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which recognizes the inherent dignity and rights ofÂ allÂ members of our human family.
And this is what was at stake here in Berlin all those years. Â And because courageous crowds climbed atop that wall, because corrupt dictatorships gave way to new democracies, because millions across this continent now breathe the fresh air of freedom, we can say, here in Berlin, here in Europe — our values won.Â Openness won.Â Tolerance won.Â And freedom won here in Berlin.Â (Applause.)
And yet, more than two decades after that triumph, we must acknowledge that there can, at times, be a complacency among our Western democracies.Â Today, people often come together in places like this to remember history — not to make it.Â After all, we face no concrete walls, no barbed wire. Â There are no tanks poised across a border.Â There are no visits to fallout shelters. Â And so sometimes there can be a sense that the great challenges have somehow passed.Â And that brings with it a temptation to turn inward — to think of our own pursuits, and not the sweep of history; to believe that weâ€™ve settled historyâ€™s accounts, that we can simply enjoy the fruits won by our forebears.
But I come here today, Berlin, to say complacency is not the character of great nations.Â Todayâ€™s threats are not as stark as they were half a century ago, but the struggle for freedom and security and human dignity — that struggle goes on.Â And Iâ€™ve come here, to this city of hope, because the tests of our time demand the same fighting spirit that defined Berlin a half-century ago.
Chancellor Merkel mentioned that we mark the anniversary of President John F. Kennedyâ€™s stirring defense of freedom, embodied in the people of this great city.Â His pledge of solidarity — â€œIch bin ein Berlinerâ€ — (applause) — echoes through the ages. Â But thatâ€™s not all that he said that day. Â Less remembered is the challenge that he issued to the crowd before him: Â â€œLet me ask you,â€ he said to those Berliners, â€œlet me ask you to lift your eyes beyond the dangers of todayâ€ and â€œbeyond the freedom of merely this city.â€ Â Look, he said, â€œto the day ofÂ peaceÂ withÂ justice, beyond yourselves and ourselves to all mankind.â€
President Kennedy was taken from us less than six months after he spoke those words.Â And like so many who died in those decades of division, he did not live to see Berlin united and free. Â Instead, he lives forever as a young man in our memory.Â But his words are timeless because they call upon us to care more about things than just our own self-comfort, about our own city, about our own country.Â They demand that we embrace the common endeavor of all humanity.
And if we lift our eyes, as President Kennedy called us to do, then weâ€™ll recognize that our work is not yet done.Â For we are not only citizens of America or Germany — we are also citizens of the world. Â And our fates and fortunes are linked like never before.
We may no longer live in fear of global annihilation, but so long as nuclear weapons exist, we are not truly safe.Â (Applause.) Â We may strike blows against terrorist networks, but if we ignore the instability and intolerance that fuels extremism, our own freedom will eventually be endangered.Â We may enjoy a standard of living that is the envy of the world, but so long as hundreds of millions endure the agony of an empty stomach or the anguish of unemployment, weâ€™re not truly prosperous.Â (Applause.)
I say all this here, in the heart of Europe, because our shared past shows that none of these challenges can be met unless we see ourselves as part of something bigger than our own experience.Â Our alliance is the foundation of global security.Â Our trade and our commerce is the engine of our global economy.Â Our values call upon us to care about the lives of people we will never meet.Â When Europe and America lead with our hopes instead of our fears, we do things that no other nations can do, no other nations will do.Â So we have to lift up our eyes today and consider the day of peace with justice that our generation wants for this world.
I’d suggest that peace with justice begins with the example we set here at home, for we know from our own histories that intolerance breeds injustice.Â Whether it’s based on race, or religion, gender or sexual orientation, we are stronger when all our people — no matter who they are or what they look like — are granted opportunity, and when our wives and our daughters have the same opportunities as our husbands and our sons.Â (Applause.)
When we respect the faiths practiced in our churches and synagogues, our mosques and our temples, we’re more secure.Â When we welcome the immigrant with his talents or her dreams, we are renewed.Â (Applause.)Â When we stand up for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters and treat their love and their rights equally under the law, we defend our own liberty as well.Â We are more free when all people can pursue their own happiness.Â (Applause.)Â And as long as walls exist in our hearts to separate us from those who donâ€™t look like us, or think like us, or worship as we do, then we’re going to have to work harder, together, to bring those walls of division down.
Peace with justice means free enterprise that unleashes the talents and creativity that reside in each of us; in other models, direct economic growth from the top down or relies solely on the resources extracted from the earth.Â But we believe that real prosperity comes from our most precious resource — our people.Â And thatâ€™s why we choose to invest in education, and science and research.Â (Applause.)
And now, as we emerge from recession, we must not avert our eyes from the insult of widening inequality, or the pain of youth who are unemployed.Â We have to build new ladders of opportunity in our own societies that — even as we pursue new trade and investment that fuels growth across the Atlantic.
America will stand with Europe as you strengthen your union.Â And we want to work with you to make sure that every person can enjoy the dignity that comes from work — whether they live in Chicago or Cleveland or Belfast or Berlin, in Athens or Madrid, everybody deserves opportunity.Â We have to have economies that are working for all people, not just those at the very top.Â (Applause.)
Peace with justice means extending a hand to those who reach for freedom, wherever they live.Â Different peoples and cultures will follow their own path, but we must reject the lie that those who live in distant places donâ€™t yearn for freedom and self-determination just like we do; that they donâ€™t somehow yearn for dignity and rule of law just like we do.Â We cannot dictate the pace of change in places like the Arab world, but we must reject the excuse that we can do nothing to support it.Â (Applause.)
We cannot shrink from our role of advancing the values we believe in — whether it’s supporting Afghans as they take responsibility for their future, or working for an Israeli-Palestinian peace — (applause) — or engaging as we’ve done in Burma to help create space for brave people to emerge from decades of dictatorship.Â In this century, these are the citizens who long to join the free world.Â They are who you were.Â They deserve our support, for they too, in their own way, are citizens of Berlin.Â And we have to help them every day.Â (Applause.)
Peace with justice means pursuing the security of a world without nuclear weapons — no matter how distant that dream may be.Â And so, as President, I’ve strengthened our efforts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons, and reduced the number and role of Americaâ€™s nuclear weapons.Â Because of the New START Treaty, weâ€™re on track to cut American and Russian deployed nuclear warheads to their lowest levels since the 1950s.Â (Applause.)
But we have more work to do.Â So today, Iâ€™m announcing additional steps forward.Â After a comprehensive review, Iâ€™ve determined that we can ensure the security of America and our allies, and maintain a strong and credible strategic deterrent, while reducing our deployed strategic nuclear weapons by up to one-third.Â And I intend to seek negotiated cuts with Russia to move beyond Cold War nuclear postures.Â (Applause.)
At the same time, weâ€™ll work with our NATO allies to seek bold reductions in U.S. and Russian tactical weapons in Europe.Â And we can forge a new international framework for peaceful nuclear power, and reject the nuclear weaponization that North Korea and Iran may be seeking.
America will host a summit in 2016 to continue our efforts to secure nuclear materials around the world,Â and we will work to build support in the United States to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, and call on all nations to begin negotiations on a treaty that ends the production of fissile materials for nuclear weapons.Â These are steps we can take to create a world of peace with justice.Â (Applause.)
Peace with justice means refusing to condemn our children to a harsher, less hospitable planet.Â The effort to slow climate change requires bold action. Â And on this, Germany and Europe have led.
In the United States, we have recently doubled our renewable energy from clean sources like wind and solar power.Â Weâ€™re doubling fuel efficiency on our cars.Â Our dangerous carbon emissions have come down.Â But we know we have to do more — and we will do more.Â (Applause.)
With a global middle class consuming more energy every day, this must now be an effort of all nations, not just some.Â For the grim alternative affects all nations — more severe storms, more famine and floods, new waves of refugees, coastlines that vanish, oceans that rise.Â This is the future we must avert.Â This is the global threat of our time.Â And for the sake of future generations, our generation must move toward a global compact to confront a changing climate before it is too late.Â That is our job.Â That is our task.Â We have to get to work.Â (Applause.)
Peace with justice means meeting our moral obligations.Â And we have a moral obligation and a profound interest in helping lift the impoverished corners of the world.Â By promoting growth so we spare a child born today a lifetime of extreme poverty.Â By investing in agriculture, so we arenâ€™t just sending food, but also teaching farmers to grow food.Â By strengthening public health, so weâ€™re not just sending medicine, but training doctors and nurses who will help end the outrage of children dying from preventable diseases.Â Making sure that we do everything we can to realize the promise — an achievable promise — of the first AIDS-free generation.Â That is something that is possible if we feel a sufficient sense of urgency.Â (Applause.)
Our efforts have to be about more than just charity.Â Theyâ€™re about new models of empowering people — to build institutions; to abandon the rot of corruption; to create ties of trade, not just aid, both with the West and among the nations theyâ€™re seeking to rise and increase their capacity.Â Because when they succeed, we will be more successful as well.Â Our fates are linked, and we cannot ignore those who are yearning not only for freedom but also prosperity.
And finally, letâ€™s remember that peace with justice depends on our ability to sustain both the security of our societies and the openness that defines them.Â Threats to freedom donâ€™t merely come from the outside.Â They can emerge from within — from our own fears, from the disengagement of our citizens.
For over a decade, America has been at war.Â Yet much has now changed over the five years since I last spoke here in Berlin.Â The Iraq war is now over.Â The Afghan war is coming to an end.Â Osama bin Laden is no more.Â Our efforts against al Qaeda are evolving.
And given these changes, last month, I spoke about Americaâ€™s efforts against terrorism. Â And I drew inspiration from one of our founding fathers, James Madison, who wrote, â€œNo nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.â€ Â James Madison is right — which is why, even as we remain vigilant about the threat of terrorism, we must move beyond a mindset of perpetual war.Â And in America, that means redoubling our efforts to close the prison at Guantanamo.Â (Applause.)Â It means tightly controlling our use of new technologies like drones.Â It means balancing the pursuit of security with the protection of privacy. (Applause.)
And I’m confident that that balance can be struck.Â I’m confident of that, and I’m confident that working with Germany, we can keep each other safe while at the same time maintaining those essential values for which we fought for.
Our current programs are bound by the rule of law, and they’re focused on threats to our security — not the communications of ordinary persons.Â They help confront real dangers, and they keep people safe here in the United States and here in Europe.Â But we must accept the challenge that all of us in democratic governments face:Â to listen to the voices who disagree with us; to have an open debate about how we use our powers and how we must constrain them; and to always remember that government exists to serve the power of the individual, and not the other way around.Â Thatâ€™s what makes us who we are, and thatâ€™s what makes us different from those on the other side of the wall.Â (Applause.)
That is how we’ll stay true to our better history while reaching for the day of peace and justice that is to come.Â These are the beliefs that guide us, the values that inspire us, the principles that bind us together as free peoples who still believe the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. — that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”Â (Applause.)
And we should ask, should anyone ask if our generation has the courage to meet these tests?Â If anybody asks if President Kennedy’s words ring true today, let them come to Berlin, for here they will find the people who emerged from the ruins of war to reap the blessings of peace; from the pain of division to the joy of reunification.Â And here, they will recall how people trapped behind a wall braved bullets, and jumped barbed wire, and dashed across minefields, and dug through tunnels, and leapt from buildings, and swam across the Spree to claim their most basic right of freedom.Â (Applause.)
The wall belongs to history.Â But we have history to make as well.Â And the heroes that came before us now call to us to live up to those highest ideals — to care for the young people who can’t find a job in our own countries, and the girls who aren’t allowed to go to school overseas; to be vigilant in safeguarding our own freedoms, but also to extend a hand to those who are reaching for freedom abroad.
This is the lesson of the ages.Â This is the spirit of Berlin.Â And the greatest tribute that we can pay to those who came before us is by carrying on their work to pursue peace and justice not only in our countries but for all mankind.
Vielen Dank.Â (Applause.) Â God bless you.Â God bless the peoples of Germany.Â And God bless the United States of America.Â Thank you very much.Â (Applause.)
ENDÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 3:58 P.M. CEST
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‘Vulgar and Lewd’: Trump Judge Cites Extremist Group to Allow Drag Show Ban
A federal judge in Texas known for a ruling that attempted to ban a widely-used abortion drug is citing an extremist anti-LGBTQ group in his ruling allowing a ban on drag shows to stay in place.
U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a former attorney for an anti-LGBTQ conservative Christian legal organization, and a member of the Federalist Society, in his 26-page ruling dated Thursday cited the “About” page of Gays Against Groomers to claim, “it’s unclear how drag shows unmistakably communicate advocacy for LGBT rights.”
Judge Kacsmaryk, appointed by Donald Trump twice before finally assuming office in 2019, suggests the First Amendment does not provide for freedom of expression for drag shows, calls drag “sexualized conduct,” and says it is “more regulable” because “children are in the audience.”
Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern adds, “Kacsmaryk’s conclusion that drag is probably NOT protected by the First Amendment conflicts with decisions from Texas, Florida, Tennessee, and Montana which held that drag is constitutionally protected expression. It also bristles with undisguised hostility toward LGBTQ people.”
Calling the judge “a proud Christian nationalist who flatly refuses to apply binding Supreme Court precedent when it conflicts with his extremist far-right beliefs,” Stern at Slate writes that Kacsmaryk ruled drag “may be outlawed to protect ‘the sexual exploitation and abuse of children.’ In short, he concluded that drag fails to convey a message, while explaining all the reasons why he’s offended by the message it conveys.”
Stern does not let Kacsmaryk off the hook there.
“From almost any other judge, the ruling in Spectrum WT v. Wendler would be a shocking rejection of basic free speech principles; from Kacsmaryk, it’s par for the course. This is, after all, the judge who sought to ban medication abortion nationwide, restricted minors’ access to birth control, seize control over border policy to exclude asylum-seekers, and flouted recent precedent protecting LGBTQ+ equality,” Stern says.
“He is also poised to bankrupt Planned Parenthood by compelling them to pay a $1.8 billion penalty on truly ludicrous grounds. And he is not the only Trump-appointed judge substituting his reactionary beliefs for legal analysis. We have reached a point where these lawless decisions are not only predictable but inevitable, and they show no sign of stopping: Their authors are still just settling into a decadeslong service in the federal judiciary.”
West Texas A&M University President Walter V. Wendler penned the letter that sparked the lawsuit.
Titled, “A Harmless Drag Show? No Such Thing,” Wendler wrote: “I believe every human being is created in the image of God and, therefore, a person of dignity. Being created in God’s image is the basis of Natural Law. James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, prisoners of the culture of their time as are we, declared the Creator’s origin as the foundational fiber in the fabric of our nation as they breathed life into it. Does a drag show preserve a single thread of human dignity? I think not.”
Journalist Chris Geidner concludes, “It’s an extremely biased ruling by a judge who has established that he does not care about being overturned — even by the most conservative appeals court in the nation.”
Gaetz Praises GOP Congressman Who Echoes His Call for Change ‘Through Force’
U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL). largely seen as pushing Speaker Kevin McCarthy‘s Republican-majority House of Representatives toward shutting down the federal government, is praising and promoting remarks made by a freshman GOP lawmaker that appear to suggest the use of violence. U.S. Rep. Eli Crane‘s comments, posted Friday (below), call for change “through force,” remarks echoing Congressman Gaetz’s recent comments which were denounced by an expert on authoritarianism as fascistic.
“The only way we’re going to see meaningful change in this town is through force,” wrote Congressman Crane, Republican of Arizona atop a three-minute video in which he frames what is now an almost guaranteed government shutdown as a “spending fight.” In his video he says, “the only way you’re gonna get any change in this town is through force.” Gaetz in August had said, “we know that only through force do we make any change in a corrupt town like Washington, D.C.”
Congressman Crane is a former Navy SEAL. He has promoted the false “Big Lie” conspiracy theory that there was massive fraud in the election President Joe Biden won, and called “on the state legislature to decertify the 2020 election.” He is one of six House Republicans who voted against McCarthy’s speakership all 15 times in January.
“Congressman Eli Crane is a fountainhead of political courage,” said Rep. Gaetz Friday afternoon. “He holds the line.”
Crane recently came under fire for calling Black people “colored,” during debate on his legislation that would force the U.S. Armed Forces to not use any diversity requirements in its hiring practices.
Just days before he won his House seat last year, The Washington Post reported Crane had urged an “audience to look up an antisemitic sermon at a recent campaign stop.”
“Crane said that he was motivated to run because of ‘radical ideologies that are destroying this country’ and that he was most concerned about ‘Cultural Marxism,’ which the Southern Poverty Law Center has described as an antisemitic baseless claim gaining traction on the American right.”
“He encouraged the audience to watch a speech by a right-wing pastor who blamed cultural change on a group of German Jewish philosophers and condemned Barack Obama for having a ‘homosexual agenda.'”
“If we don’t wake up,” Crane said, according to the Post, “if we don’t study what they’re doing, and if we don’t put people in influential positions that understand what this war is all about, what they’re trying to do and have and have the courage to call it out, we’re going to lose this country.”
In August, while standing next to Donald Trump at a campaign rally, Congressman Gaetz said, “Mr. President, I cannot stand these people that are destroying our country. They are opening our borders. They are weaponizing our federal law enforcement against patriotic Americans who love this nation as we should.”
“But we know that only through force do we make any change in a corrupt town like Washington, D.C. And so to all my friends here in Iowa, when you see them come for this man, know that they are coming for our movement and they are coming for all of us.”
At the time, Raw Story reported, “historian and author Ruth Ben-Ghiat called Gaetz comments alarming.”
“What he is saying is that they are not going to have change through elections or through legislation or through reform. They are going to have change through violence,” she warned.
“And that’s how fascists talk,” Ben-Ghiat added. “So, even if Trump is out of the picture, these are people who have adopted methods very familiar to me as a historian of fascism, that violence and corruption and lying that’s what the party is today.”
Image via Shutterstock
‘See How Easy That Is to Say?’: GOP Mocked for ‘Weaponization’ of DOJ Claims as Democratic Senator Gets Indicted
The U.S. Dept. of Justice unsealed an indictment against U.S. Senator Bob Menendez late Friday morning, accusing the New Jersey Democratic lawmaker of bribery as prosecutors showed photos of gold bars and nearly half-a-million dollars in cash stuffed into a jacket that bears his name and the seal of the U.S. Senate.
Many on the left immediately demanded Senator Menendez resign, a demand he is refusing. He will step down as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, which Senate Democrats require when a chair is criminally charged.
It took little time for liberals to mock Republicans who have been claiming President Joe Biden and Democrats in general, along with the “deep state,” have “weaponized” the Dept. of Justice against conservatives, especially after Donald Trump’s four indictments on a total of 91 criminal felonies.
“Let me get this straight,” wrote journalist and progressive SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah. “To the GOP, when DOJ indicts President Biden’s son and a senior Democratic US Senator that is great. But when DOJ indicts Donald Trump for attempting a coup and for 32 counts of Espionage that is DOJ’s ‘weaponization’ of criminal justice?!”
“This is the second time that Sen. Bob Menendez has been indicted for corruption. He needs to resign and allow Gov. Murphy to fill that vacancy with someone who does right by the people of New Jersey,” wrote former Human Rights Campaign press secretary Charlotte Clymer. “See how easy that is to say, GOP?”
Journalist, author, and former Clinton White House aide Keith Boykin posted video of the prosecutor announcing the indictment.
US Attorney Damian Williams shows photos of the Mercedes Benz, gold bars, and cash the government alleges Senator Robert Menendez received in bribes. pic.twitter.com/h4hYYwzKVQ
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) September 22, 2023
Boykin later sarcastically commented, “There goes Biden again weaponizing the Justice Department to prosecute political leaders in his own party.”
“President Joe Biden’s weaponized Department of Justice has now indicted Democratic Senator Bob Menendez and *checks notes* Joe Biden’s son,” observed veteran intelligence officer, activist, and social media personality Travis Akers.
Attorney and former Republican George Conway quickly responded, saying, “senile sleepy Joe is playing 65-dimensional chess again.”
“Menendez should resign. Today,” demanded historian and author Kevin M. Kruse.
“One of the nice things about rule of law is that truly believing in it ensures that you don’t end up as a partisan hypocrite,” observed The Atlantic’s Brian Klaas, an associate professor in global politics at University College London. “If Menendez is guilty, he should go to prison as anyone else would. (And it would be prudent to resign swiftly).”
Meanwhile, some used Friday’s indictment of Sen. Menendez to focus on other political figures.
Foreign policy, national security and political affairs analyst and commentator David Rothkopf, warned, “The Memendez case should have Jared [Kushner] and Clarence [Thomas] ordering extra strength Tums today.”
Rachel Bitecofer, the political strategist and analyst also appeared to point the finger at Justice Thomas and his wife, Ginni.
You know who else hid money from the IRS and ran his bribes through his wife?! pic.twitter.com/kWJuAPCtbJ
— Rachel Bitecofer 📈🔭🇺🇲🇺🇦 (@RachelBitecofer) September 22, 2023
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