Over 80 Republicans have signed an amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to find a constitutional right to marriage for same-sex couples. Who are these extraordinarily supportive Republicans? They’re largely those who have served in top-level Republican National Committee (RNC) posts, the George W. Bush administration, Congress, or are GOP strategists. They also largely have little to lose, as they’re not running for re-election, with the exception of CongresswomanÂ Ileana Ros-Lehtinen andÂ Richard Hanna (image: bottom left and right).
But many had previously supported only so-called “traditional marriage,” and many also supported a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, so the message to the Supreme Court is huge.
“Backers have been working for about three months on the list, which includes Republicans who have been wrestling for year on what position to take on the issue,” Politico reports:
AFER said the signers include â€œsocial and political conservatives, moderates, and libertarians from diverse religious, racial, regional, and philosophical backgrounds.â€
Ken Mehlman, a board member of AFER who managed former President George W. Bushâ€™s reelection campaign and personally secured many of the signatures, said in an email to POLITICO: â€œRonald Reagan, our great conservative President, used to say, real change occurs around the kitchen table. This brief is reflective of real change occurring all across our country as families sit around kitchen tables, think about the value of family to their own lives and recognize these benefits should be available to all Americans.â€
While the Supreme Court has received dozens if not over 100 amicus briefs on same-sex marriage for next month’s hearings, they will have little effect. This one, however, is different.
“Experts say that amicus briefs generally do not change Supreme Court justicesâ€™ minds,” the New York Times reports:
But on Monday some said that the Republican brief, written by Seth P. Waxman, a former solicitor general in the administration of President Bill Clinton, and Reginald Brown, who served in the Bush White House Counselâ€™s Office, might be an exception.
Tom Goldstein, publisher of Scotusblog, a Web site that analyzes Supreme Court cases, said the amicus filing â€œhas the potential to break through and make a real difference.â€
He added: â€œThe person who is going to decide this case, if itâ€™s going to be close, is going to be a conservative justice who respects traditional marriage but nonetheless is sympathetic to the claims that this is just another form of hatred. If youâ€™re trying to persuade someone like that, you canâ€™t persuade them from the perspective of gay rights advocacy.â€
So, who are the 80+ Republicans on the list?
AFER offers the most-current list:
- Ken Mehlman,Â Chairman, Republican National Committee, 2005-2007
- Tim Adams,Â Undersecretary of the Treasury for International Affairs, 2005-2007
- David D. Aufhauser,Â General Counsel, Department of Treasury, 2001-2003
- Cliff S. Asness,Â Businessman, Philanthropist, and Author
- John B. Bellinger III,Â Legal Adviser to the Department of State, 2005-2009
- Katie Biber,Â General Counsel, Romney for President, 2007-2008 and 2011-2012
- Mary Bono Mack, Member of Congress, 1998-2013
- William A. Burck, Deputy Staff Secretary, Special Counsel and Deputy Counsel to the President, 2005-2009
- Alex Castellanos, Republican Media Advisor
- Paul Cellucci,Â Governor of Massachusetts, 1997-2001, and Ambassador to Canada, 2001-2005
- Mary Cheney, Director of Vice Presidential Operations, Bush-Cheney 2004
- Jim Cicconi, Assistant to the President & Deputy to the Chief of Staff, 1989-1990
- James B. Comey, United States Deputy Attorney General, 2003-2005
- R. Clarke Cooper,Â U.S. Alternative Representative, United Nations Security Council, 2007-2009
- Julie Cram,Â Deputy Assistant to the President and Director White House Office of Public Liaison, 2007-2009
- Michele Davis,Â Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs and Director of Policy Planning, Department of the Treasury, 2006-2009
- Kenneth M. Duberstein,Â White House Chief of Staff and Assistant to the President, 1981-1984 and 1987-1989
- Lew Eisenberg,Â Finance Chairman, Republican National Committee, 2002-2004
- Elizabeth Noyer Feld,Â Public Affairs Specialist, White House Office of Management and Budget, 1984-1987
- David Frum,Â Special Assistant to the President, 2001-2002
- Richard Galen,Â Communications Director, Speakerâ€™s Political Office, 1996-1997
- Mark Gerson,Â Chairman, Gerson Lehrman Group and Author ofÂ The Neoconservative Vision: From the Cold War to the Culture WarsÂ andÂ In the Classroom: Dispatches from an Inner-City School that Works
- Benjamin Ginsberg,Â General Counsel, Bush-Cheney 2000 & 2004
- Adrian Gray,Â Director of Strategy, Republican National Committee, 2005-2007
- Richard Grenell,Â Spokesman, U.S. Ambassadors to the United Nations, 2001-2008
- Patrick Guerriero,Â Mayor, Melrose Massachusetts and member of Massachusetts House of Representatives, 1993-2001
- Carlos Gutierrez,Â Secretary of Commerce, 2005-2009
- Stephen Hadley,Â Assistant to the President and National Security Advisor, 2005-2009
- Richard Hanna,Â Member of Congress, 2011-Present
- Israel Hernandez,Â Assistant Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, 2005-2009
- Margaret Hoover,Â Advisor to the Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security, 2005-2006
- Michael Huffington,Â Member of Congress, 1993-1995
- Jon Huntsman,Â Governor of Utah, 2005-2009
- David A. Javdan,Â General Counsel, United States Small Business Administration, 2002-2006
- Reuben Jeffery,Â Undersecretary of State for Economic, Energy, and Agricultural Affairs, 2007-2009
- Greg Jenkins,Â Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Presidential Advance, 2003-2004
- Coddy Johnson,Â National Field Director, Bush-Cheney 2004
- Gary Johnson,Â Governor of New Mexico, 1995-2003
- Robert Kabel,Â Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, 1982-1985
- Theodore W. Kassinger,Â Deputy Secretary of Commerce, 2004-2005
- Jonathan Kislak,Â Deputy Undersecretary of Agriculture for Small Community and Rural Development, 1989-1991
- David Kochel,Â Senior Advisor to Mitt Romneyâ€™s Iowa Campaign, 2007-2008 and 2011-2012
- James Kolbe,Â Member of Congress, 1985-2007
- Jeffrey Kupfer,Â Acting Deputy Secretary of Energy, 2008-2009
- Kathryn Lehman,Â Chief of Staff, House Republican Conference, 2003-2005
- Daniel Loeb,Â Businessman and Philanthropist
- Alex Lundry,Â Director of Data Science, Romney for President, 2012
- Greg Mankiw,Â Chairman, Council of Economic Advisers, 2003-2005
- Catherine Martin,Â Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Communications Director for Policy & Planning, 2005-2007
- Kevin Martin,Â Chairman, Federal Communications Commission, 2005-2009
- David McCormick,Â Undersecretary of the Treasury for International Affairs, 2007-2009
- Mark McKinnon,Â Republican Media Advisor
- Bruce P. Mehlman,Â Assistant Secretary of Commerce, 2001-2003
- Connie Morella,Â Member of Congress, 1987-2003 and U.S. Ambassador to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2003-2007
- Michael E. Murphy,Â Republican Political Consultant
- Michael Napolitano,Â White House Office of Political Affairs, 2001-2003
- Ana Navarro,Â National Hispanic Co-Chair for Senator John McCainâ€™s Presidential Campaign, 2008
- Noam Neusner,Â Special Assistant to the President for Economic Speechwriting, 2002-2005
- Nancy Pfotenhauer,Â Economist, Presidential Transition Team, 1988 and President’s Council on Competitiveness, 1990
- J. Stanley Pottinger,Â Assistant U.S. Attorney General (Civil Rights Division), 1973-1977
- Michael Powell,Â Chairman, Federal Communications Commission, 2001-2005
- Deborah Pryce,Â Member of Congress, 1993-2009
- John Reagan,Â New Hampshire State Senator, 2012-Present
- Kelley Robertson,Â Chief of Staff, Republican National Committee, 2005-2007
- Ileana Ros-Lehtinen,Â Member of Congress, 1989-Present
- Harvey S. Rosen,Â Member and Chairman, Council of Economic Advisers, 2003-2005
- Lee Rudofsky,Â Deputy General Counsel, Romney for President, 2012
- Patrick Ruffini,Â eCampaign Director, Republican National Committee, 2005-2007
- Steve Schmidt,Â Deputy Assistant to the President and Counselor to the Vice President, 2004-2006
- Ken Spain,Â Communications Director, National Republican Congressional Committee, 2009-2010
- Robert Steel,Â Undersecretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance, 2006-2008
- David Stockman,Â Director, Office of Management and Budget, 1981-1985
- Jane Swift,Â Governor of Massachusetts, 2001-2003
- Michael E. Toner, Chairman and Commissioner, Federal Election Commission, 2002-2007
- Michael Turk,Â eCampaign Director for Bush-Cheney 2004
- Mark Wallace,Â U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Representative for UN Management and Reform, 2006-2008
- Nicolle Wallace,Â Assistant to the President and White House Communications Director, 2005-2008
- William F. Weld,Â Governor of Massachusetts, 1991-1997, and Assistant U.S. Attorney General (Criminal Division), 1986-1988
- Christine Todd Whitman,Â Governor of New Jersey, 1994-2001, and Administrator of the EPA, 2001-2003
- Meg Whitman,Â Republican Nominee for Governor of California, 2010
- Robert Wickers,Â Republican Political Consultant
- Dan Zwonitzer,Â Wyoming State Representative, 2005-present
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‘Big Whop’: Even Right-Wing Critics Are Slamming Elon Musk’s ‘Underwhelming’ Hunter Biden Twitter Escapade
Right-wing Twitter users are weighing in to express their disapproval of the so-called bombshell “Twitter files” Elon Musk promised to deliver on Friday, December 2.
According to The Daily Beast, Musk was set to address Twitter’s decision to implement a policy that would restrict headlines and reports about Hunter Biden’s laptop from circulating on the social media platform. However, the leak ended up being a failure for many right-wing experts.
Sebastian Gorka, a right-wing radio host who previously served under the Trump administration, offered a critical response to Musk’s release after journalist Matt Taibbi shared a full Twitter thread about the findings.
“So far, I’m deeply underwhelmed,” Gorka said, adding, “We know the Dems in DC collude with the Dems in Palo Alto [Califonia]. Big Whop.”
He went on to reiterate his arguments when grilled by his far-right followers who were convinced that Musk’s Twitter files were some kind of “smoking gun.”
Per the news outlet: “Responding to a user claiming the Twitter company emails were ‘a clear violation of the 1st Amendment,’ the radio host fired back: ‘Err no, it’s not the DNC asking a private company to censor has nothing to do with the First Amendment.’”
Speaking to Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, New York Post columnist Miranda Devine also disapproved of the release. “I feel that Elon Musk has held back some material,” she alleged. According to The Beast, Devine also claimed: “sinister forces were perhaps controlling Musk after the Twitter chief took a meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook earlier in the week.”
She added, “In particular, there’s a tweet in which Matt Taibbi says he hasn’t seen any evidence that law enforcement specifically warned off Twitter from our story. But that’s just not correct.”
Free Beacon reporter Joe Simonson also echoed similar sentiments on Twitter. “Twitter files [are] underwhelming so far,” Simonson tweeted. “Just revealing what we already knew: Twitter was staffed by democrats who did the bidding of Democrats.”
Musk’s Twitter Is ‘Welcoming With Open Arms’ a ‘Full-Fledged Nazi’ – and Recommending Users Follow Him: Reports
Elon Musk‘s Twitter on Friday allowed Andrew Anglin, the neo-Nazi behind the infamous Daily Stormer website to return to the social media platform after a nine-year ban. Several Twitter users reported the social media platform is now recommending they follow him.
“Anglin has publicly indicated that the goal of his operation and adherence to white nationalist ideology is to ‘ethnically cleanse White nations of non-Whites and establish an authoritarian government. Many people also believe that the Jews should be exterminated,'” reported Rolling Stone on Friday. “Anglin is a staunch supporter of Nazi ideology and regularly espouses Holocaust denail. In 2018, Anglin wrote that he ‘[hates] women. I think they deserve to be beaten, raped and locked in cages.'”
WUSA 9 investigative reporter Jordan Fischer tweeted a screenshot of the Twitter recommendation.
Twitter is currently recommending I follow neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin. Incredible stuff. pic.twitter.com/F2f9c75Tla
— Jordan Fischer (@JordanOnRecord) December 2, 2022
As did other Twitter users.
— Camas Defense Alliance (@CamDefAlliance) December 2, 2022
Last month veteran journalist Nick Martin, who investigates hate and extremism, reported that “Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene shared a thread calling on Elon Musk to reinstate an array of racists, conspiracy theorists and serial harassers. The list includes fugitive neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, white supremacist David Duke and British neo-Nazi Mark Collett.”
Earlier today, Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene shared a thread calling on Elon Musk to reinstate an array of racists, conspiracy theorists and serial harassers. The list includes fugitive neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, white supremacist David Duke and British neo-Nazi Mark Collett. pic.twitter.com/FadEr3ZcUm
— Nick Martin (@nickmartin) November 23, 2022
At the top of that list is Milo Yiannopoulos, a right wing extremist and provocateur who has advocated for older men having sex with underaged teen boys. Yiannopoulos is also Greene’s intern who was reportedly part of the Kanye West–Nick Fuentes dinner with Donald Trump.
“Andrew Anglin is the founder of the neo-Nazi Daily Stormer website, which takes its name from the gutter Nazi propaganda sheet known as Der Stürmer,” the Southern Poverty Law Center has reported. “True to that vintage, Anglin is infamous for the crudity of his language and his thinking, a contrast to his sophistication as a prolific internet troll and serial harasser. Anglin’s organizing and harassment on the Daily Stormer led to lawsuits, and courts have awarded millions of dollars in damages to plaintiffs suing Anglin in recent years. But with his whereabouts unknown, Anglin has so far escaped full accountability for his actions.”
Indeed, just last month a federal judge issued an arrest warrant for Andrew Anglin, who is “accused of ignoring a $14 million judgment against him for orchestrating an antisemitic harassment campaign against a Montana woman’s family,” The Billings Gazette had reported.
SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah responded to Anglin’s return to Twitter by reminding him he still owes him “$4.1 million dollars for sending your Nazis to kill me. Do you have the $?! I want to donate it groups that counter the very hate you spew!”
“Musk is helping normalize a Nazi,” he adds.
Amy Spitalnick, the executive director of Integrity First for America (IFA) called Anglin “a full-fledged Nazi who runs the Daily Stormer and, among many other things, was found liable for the Charlottesville violence in our lawsuit. A perfect example of the vile, violent extremists Musk is welcoming with open arms.”
Image: Elon Musk, photo by NASA/Aubrey Gemignani via Flickr
Anti-LGBTQ Slurs on Twitter Up Over 800% as Musk Allows Thousands of Previously Banned Users Back: Reports
In the wake of the Colorado Springs hate crime mass shooting last month at an gay nightclub’s drag show event that left five people dead, the anti-LGBTQ slur “groomer” and other anti-LGBTQ hate speech posts on Twitter skyrocketed, “peaking at 885% over their highest level before the shooting,” NBC News reports.
“Barely 24 hours after the Colorado Springs hate crime attack,” Salon reported last week, “Elon Musk’s new Twitter responded to the massacre by reinstating the account of James Lindsay, the right-wing activist responsible for popularizing the anti-LGBTQ slur ‘OK groomer,’ which over the last 10 months has been used to imply that demands for LGBTQ rights or representation are tantamount to child molestation. In August, Lindsay was banned from Twitter for using a variation on the term, which under Twitter’s old regime was prohibited as a form of hateful conduct. But by Monday night, not only was Lindsay back, but ‘OK groomer’ was trending on the platform under its new ownership.”
Slurs against gay men on Twitter have increased by a daily average of 58% in the weeks following Elon Musk taking the critically influential social media platform private, firing its board, and welcoming back thousands of previously-banned accounts, according to information from NBC News and The New York Times.
“Travis Brown, an independent software developer in Berlin who tracks Twitter suspensions and screen name changes as part of a project studying extremism,” NBC News reports, shared data “that showed a wide variety of far-right accounts had been reinstated since Musk’s announcement” of a so-called “general amnesty.”
“In that time, Brown has logged an estimated 12,000 reversals of past bans, in a set that, while not a definitive list of reversals, provides a window into the types of users being welcomed back to the platform and leaving experts alarmed.”
In addition to “spammers, copyright rule-breakers, adult-content creators and high-profile accounts, Twitter has reopened the door to a growing and emboldened community of trolls, white nationalists, conspiracy theorists and extreme right-wing activists,” NBC adds.
Musk’s general amnesty “has restored hundreds of accounts of right-wing activists and QAnon adherents, according to data reviewed by NBC News. The reinstatement of far-right accounts has coincided with a series of bans of left-wing accounts, leaving users unsure of how the company is now applying its rules.”
The New York Times adds, “Before Elon Musk bought Twitter, slurs against Black Americans showed up on the social media service an average of 1,282 times a day. After the billionaire became Twitter’s owner, they jumped to 3,876 times a day.”
“Slurs against gay men appeared on Twitter 2,506 times a day on average before Mr. Musk took over. Afterward, their use rose to 3,964 times a day,” The Times reports. “And antisemitic posts referring to Jews or Judaism soared more than 61 percent in the two weeks after Mr. Musk acquired the site.”
“I see good things about Hitler,” West told Jones. “Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.”
Musk apparently personally had West’s Twitter account suspended when the artist who goes by “Ye” posted an image of a Jewish six-pointed star embedded with a Nazi swastika. The account, at least for now, remains suspended.
The Times reporting, which includes information from the Center for Countering Digital Hate, the Anti-Defamation League and other groups, calls the increase in hate speech on Musk’s Twitter “unprecedented.”
“Accounts that Twitter used to regularly remove — such as those that identify as part of the Islamic State, which were banned after the U.S. government classified ISIS as a terror group — have come roaring back. Accounts associated with QAnon, a vast far-right conspiracy theory, have paid for and received verified status on Twitter, giving them a sheen of legitimacy,” The Times reveals.
Musk himself set the stage. At the end of October he retweeted a false, anti-LGBTQ conspiracy theory involving Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s husband, who had recently been bludgeoned in a “near death” attack in their San Francisco home, allegedly by a man who has promoted far right extremism. He later removed that retweet.
Just last week Bloomberg News reported Musk was “restoring a string of accounts previously suspended for harassing transgender people, rolling back protections for the LGBTQ community as the country confronts the aftermath” of the Colorado Springs mass shooting. “Advocates say the shooting… highlights the potential real-world violence that can stem from rhetoric against the trans community. They noted that anti-trans abuse has been mounting on the platform since the shooting.”
As Musk welcomes back thousands who were banned for various reasons, from hate speech to disinformation to spamming to attacks on minorities and more, NBC’s reporting makes clear that left wing activists are finding their accounts suspended for apparently no legitimate reason.
“Chad Loder is an independent journalist in Los Angeles with more than 137,000 followers whose reporting on the Jan. 6 riot has been cited in Justice Department charging documents. Loder, who uses they/them pronouns, recently had their account suspended, briefly reinstated and then suspended again without a clear reason.”
For his part, Musk took to Twitter to refute reports hate speech has increased dramatically.
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