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Breaking: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer Vetoes Anti-Gay ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill

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After five full days of increasingly heated rhetoric and debate enveloping America’s national conversation, Republican governor Jan Brewer tonight put an end to the debate by vetoing Arizona‘s highly-controversial anti-gay legislation. The bill, SB-1062, marketed by anti-gay religious conservatives as a “religious freedom” bill, would have allowed anyone in the Grand Canyon State to deny anyone else service if they could claim not doing so would violate their “sincerely held” religious beliefs.

LOOK: Here’s Jan Brewer’s Letter Explaining Her Veto Of Anti-Gay Bill

Lamenting that SB-1062 is “broadly worded and could result in unintended and negative consequences,” Gov. Brewer said, “I sincerely believe that [the bill] has the potential to create more problems than it purports to solve. It could divide Arizona in ways that no one could imagine.”

“My agenda is to sign into law legislation that advances Arizona,” Brewer said. “I call them like I seem them despite the tears or the boos from the crowd.”

Gov. Brewer said the bill did not meet any of the needs or standards she laid out at the beginning of the legislative session.

“I’ve not herd one example in Arizona where business owners’ religious liberty was violated.”

“After weighing all of the arguments, I have vetoed SB 1062 moments ago,” Gov. Brewer concluded.

“Religious liberty is a core American value,” Brewer told reporters, adding, “so is non-discrimination.”

Late this afternoon, the NFL announced they were re-opening their search for a 2015 Super Bowl location, given that Brewer had yet to veto the bill and, should it become law, it would violate NFL anti-discrimination rules.

Major League Baseball this afternoon also responded, denouncing the legislation and urging a veto.

Brewer had vetoed a similar bill last year, but did so as part of a package of bills she promised to veto until lawmakers sent her a budget.

Much of the nation came out against the bill, including almost one hundred major corporations that do business in Arizona, three of the Republican senators who originally voted for the bill, Arizona’s Republican Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake, every major LGBT organization, politicians across the nation from both sides of the aisle, and seemingly, most people on social media, like Twitter and Facebook.

The national conversation has been rife with anti-gay and pro-religious rhetoric, and the media as well as Arizona lawmakers set up a false dichotomy — playing into the hands of the radical religious right — that religious freedom is incompatible with civil rights for the LGBT community. Of course, that’s a ludicrous argument, and a great many people of faith and religious groups voiced opposition to the wide-sweeping legislation.

Several other states have attempted to pass similar legislation, reportedly drafted with the support of anti-gay groups like the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) but have been unsuccessful.

The bill, were Brewer to have signed it into law, would almost certainly have been struck down as unconstitutional.

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BREAKING NEWS

Watch: Bill Barr Has Talked to Jan. 6 Committee Says Chairman

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Bill Barr, the former Attorney General who served as then-President Donald Trump’s top protector, has spoken with the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.

Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS), asked by CBS News about a bombshell draft executive order directing the Secretary of Defense to seize voting machines after Trump lost the 2020 presidential election, said: “We’ve had conversations with the former attorney general already. We have talked to Department of Defense individuals.”

“We are concerned that our military was part of this big lie on promoting that the election was false,” Thompson said Sunday morning on “Face the Nation.”

“So, if you are using the military to potentially seize voting machines, even though it’s a discussion, the public needs to know. We’ve never had that before.”

The draft memo was never formalized or enacted, and it is unknown who wrote it, but it was part of a massive, hard-fought document collection given to the Jan. 6 Committee by the National Archives after the Supreme Court refused to block its release. Trump tried for months to keep his official White House records from being released.

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News

Trump Instructed Michael Cohen to Make Sure Don Jr. Went to Jail Instead of Ivanka

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According to a report from Business Insider, Michael Cohen admitted on Saturday that Donald Trump instructed him in 2012 to make sure that Don Trump Jr. be the one to take the fall instead of Ivanka Trump during an investigation by Manhattan’s district attorney into lying about property sales.

In an interview with MSNBC’s Alex Witt, Cohen recalled that the former president was concerned about Ivanka’s well-being if she was sentenced to jail and that Don Jr. would handle it better.

According to the report, Cohen told the MSNBC host, “You may recall that there was the district attorney’s case here for Trump Soho where it was either Don or Ivanka was in very big trouble as a result of lying about the number of units that had been sold.”

RELATED: ’She took that West Wing office!’: Ivanka Trump blasted for trying to ‘blow off’ Jan. 6 probe

“And Donald said it to me – I mean I wouldn’t say it if it wasn’t said directly to me – he goes ‘if one or the other has to go to prison, make sure that it’s Don because Don would be able to handle it, ” he continued.

Cohen later said that he doesn’t expect Ivanka to willingly appear before the House committee investigating the Jan 6th insurrection and claimed the first daughter would likely plead the 5th before explaining, “Ivanka is only interested in Ivanka.”

You can read more here.

Image by Walt Disney Television/ABC/Ida Mae Astute via Flickr and a CC license

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CRIME

Trumps Could ‘Turn on One Another’ as Investigations ‘Go Up the Food Chain’: MSNBC Analyst

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Former president Donald Trump and his family are facing “existential” threats from ongoing criminal investigations in New York and Georgia, according to MSNBC political analyst and Trump biographer Tim O’Brien.

“I think you’re going to start to see this vice squeeze in,” O’Brien said Saturday. “The Trumps will happily throw underlings under the bus as this gets hotter. I think the question is whether or not the family members will turn on one another as it goes up the food chain.”

“The Manhattan DA’s case has existential consequences to it,” O’Brien added. “Donald Trump and perhaps his children could end up in orange jumpsuits if that case goes the full route. That’s not going to be the case with (New York AG) Letitia James’ prosecution, that’s a civil case. I also think the Georgia case has an existential threat. Donald Trump acting like a 19th-century ward heeler, called up the secretary of state and said find me some votes, and there’s proof of that, there’s evidence.”

Watch the full interview below.

 

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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