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Anti-Gay Indicted Former Virginia GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell’s Marriage Was A Sham

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Anti-gay, anti-women, religious extremist, GOP former Governor Bob McDonnell was indicted on corruption charges after leaving office this year. In his federal trial this week, it’s revealed his marriage was a sham and his wife was engaged in an “inappropriate relationship.”

Less than three weeks after taking office in 2010, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell was positioned as a GOP savior. Clean-cut and handsome, he looked presidential. Some thought he might make it to the White House — as president or VP. Today, after a tumultuous four-year gubernatorial term, Bob McDonnell is on trial for corruption.

Back in January, The Washington Post reported that “McDonnell and his wife Maureen were charged in federal court Tuesday with illegally accepting gifts, luxury vacations and large loans from a wealthy Richmond-area businessman who sought special treatment from state government.” The Post added the feds “alleged McDonnell and his wife received gifts from [Jonnie] Williams again and again, lodging near constant requests for money, clothes, trips, golf accessories and private plane rides.”

As The New Civil Rights Movement reported then, Gov. McDonnell advocated for a state ban on same-sex marriage, and ushered in an administration openly hostile to its own LGBT citizens. In 2012, for example, Gov. McDonnell said gay parents threaten the ability of their children to achieve the American dream, and only straight parents can give children the right start in life. The year prior, McDonnell announced he wanted to block adoptions by same-sex couples. And just days after the newly-elected Governor Bob McDonnell took office, he signed a new state policy that specifically removed LGBTQ protections from state workers.

McDonnell, who graduated from Pat Robertson’s Regent University, wrote a 1989 thesis which proffered that the government should make policy favorable to married couples over “cohabitators, homosexuals or fornicators.”

But McDonnell was perhaps best known, thanks to MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, as “Governor Ultrasound,” for supporting a bill forcing women who were seeking an abortion to undergo a wholly medically-intrusive and wholly-medically unnecessary vaginal ultrasound. It was, of course, a GOP attempt to dissuade women from having abortions.

Today, Politico reports that “Bob McDonnell’s marriage was broken and his wife developed a crush on a businessman who lavished her with expensive gifts and attention, an attorney for the first lady said Tuesday during the couple’s corruption trial.

The McDonnells are charged in a 14-count indictment with accepting more than $165,000 in gifts and loans from former Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams in exchange for promoting his dietary supplements company. If convicted, they could face decades in prison.

Maureen McDonnell’s lawyer William A. Burck said during opening statements that the former first lady was “duped” by Williams into thinking he cared for her. Williams filled a “void” in her life, and she and her husband were pretending to be a happy couple although their marriage had “broken down” long ago, Burck said.

“There were barely on speaking terms,” Burck said.Burck said Williams and Maureen frequently exchanged text messages and phone calls, and that Williams often visited the Executive Mansion. Burck said the pair had a relationship that “some people would consider inappropriate” and that one potential witness may describe Williams as Maureen McDonnell’s “favorite playmate.” He did not indicate that their relationship was physical.

WVTR has two video reports from the courthouse.

 

This post has been updated to properly state the founder of Regent University. 

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr

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COMMENTARY

‘We’re in Trouble’: Steve Schmidt Issues Dire Warning About Changed GOP After January 6th Insurrection

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Appearing on MSNBC’s the 11th Hour with host Brian Williams, former GOP campaign consultant Steve Schmidt warned that Democrats need to accept that the Republican Party has changed drastically after four years of Donald Trump and the Jan 6th riot — and failure to recognize that simple fact puts the entire country at risk.

Using one of Schmidt’s tweets where he called Trump’s “truth” a “hideous deception” as a jumping-off point, the former Republican warned, “We’re in trouble.”

“Objectively, since the insurrection on Jan 6th, the Republican Party is far more radical,” Schmidt began. “Far more committed to the lie that Trump has told, fully committed to the authoritarian movement.”

“Should the events repeat themselves, the Republican Party is in a much different place than it was this past election with regard to being prepared to subvert the legal and lawful results,” he continued.

“The Democrats have done nothing since coming into office,” he added. “They have done nothing to prevent any of the abuses we have seen, done nothing to harden any of the infrastructures”

He later added, “This is a serious moment.”

Watch below:

 

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ANALYSIS

‘Something That’s Under Way’: Trump Aims to Use Russian Tactic to Be ‘Installed Without Winning’ in 2024 Says Yale Historian

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Former president Donald Trump and his GOP supporters are hoping to rely on a tactic that’s common in Russia to return him to the White House in 2024, according to one prominent expert on authoritarianism.

“As someone who follows contemporary Russia, there is a Russian phrase that comes to mind, which is the ‘administrative resource,'” author and Yale University history professor Timothy Snyder told MSNBC on Friday. “What the administrative resource means in Russian is that sure, you have an election, but the people who are running the election are going to determine how the election turns out. What the Republicans are going for is precisely that thing, the administrative resource.”

Snyder then explained how this mechanism works and how Trump and Republicans might apply it during the next election.

“Historically speaking, what we know about a ‘big lie’ is that because of its very scale, it’s not about truth or not truth; it’s about living in a kind of alternative reality,” Snyder added. “What we’re looking at is people who believe in or pretend to believe in this Big Lie, actually carrying out our elections. And the problem with this, or one of them, is that since these people have already claimed that the other side cheated, that basically legitimizes their cheating. In other words, if you talk about the Big Lie now, you’re basically promising to cheat the next time around, and that’s very concerning.”

He concluded by saying that this is a clear and present danger, not merely a theoretical one.

“The scenario for 2024 for most influential people around Donald Trump, which unfortunately means one of the political parties, is precisely to be installed without winning the election,” Snyder said. “I don’t think it’s something that could happen. I think it’s something that’s under way, and the question is, can we accept this reality in time to take the measures we need to take to prevent it?”

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

‘Ghoulish’ Lauren Bobert Branded a ‘Sociopath’ for Attacking Alec Baldwin: ‘Grieving Family Just Lost Their Loved One’

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U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert, the QAnon Republican lawmaker and gun rights activist who owns a bar named Shooters in Rifle, Colorado, is being criticized after posting a tweet mocking and attacking Alec Baldwin. The well-known actor who spent several years playing Donald Trump on “Saturday Night Live” shot and killed award-winning cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, apparently by accident, with a prop gun on set less than 24 hours ago.

Boebert dug up a seven-year old tweet Baldwin had sent in support of Michael Brown, the 18-year old Black man fatally shot by a Ferguson, Missouri police officer.

She then added a snide and ugly remark and posted it to Twitter, only too happy to use the pain of Hutchins’ grieving family, friends, and industry as a tool to attack Baldwin:

The outrage was palpable, even from a few on the right, like former Trump White House Director of Strategic Communications:

A Democratic U.S. Congressman weighed in:

This MSNBC correspondent made a keen observation:

And many others:

 

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