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TENNESSEE: Attorney General Says Bill Targeting Trans Students Risks $1.2 Billion in Title IX Funds

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Anti-Trans Bill That Lawmakers Are Trying to Push Through Tennessee Legislature Violates Federal Government Policy

The Republican Attorney General of Tennessee has just released his opinion on the impact a bill targeting transgender students in public schools would have on the state. Herbert Slatery (photo) says should HB 2414 be signed into law and a single transgender student files a complaint with the federal Department of Education, Tennessee could be at risk for losing its Title IX federal funding. The Williams Institute also released a study, stating Tennessee could lose its $1.2 billion in Title IX funding should HB 2414 be come law.

Slatery, who is reportedly a close life-long friend of Republican Gov. Bill Haslam and served as his chief legal counsel, explains that “if a transgender student is required by a school district in Tennessee to use a restroom or locker room facility that is consistent with his or her anatomical gender rather than his or her gender expression or gender identity, and if that student files a complaint, DOE, applying its current interpretation of Title IX, will almost certainly require the school district to permit the student access to the facility consistent with his or her gender expression.”

He adds, Tennessee’s “refusal to do so could very well result in loss of federal funding—at least until DOE’s interpretation is overruled by authoritative and binding judicial decision.”

The five-page document stands in contrast to at least one Republican lawmaker’s opinion delivered just last week in a committee meeting. State Rep. Rick Womick, a supporter of HB 2414, told his colleagues on the House Education Administration & Planning Committee last Wednesday he was unconcerned with the ramifications should the bill violate federal law or policy. 

“I don’t care about Title IX,” Womick stated. 

Tennessee could be out $1.2 billion should the federal government decide the state were no longer eligible for Title IX funding. North Carolina is currently risking $4.5 billion after Gov. Pat McCrory signed HB2 into law last month. 

Lawmakers met with AG Slatery today to discuss his opinion on HB 2414. Democratic State Rep. Mike Stewart “called Slatery’s opinion the ‘final nail in the coffin,'” The Tennessean reports.

“The fact that the attorney general has recognized that this will result in significantly reduced federal funds for the state of Tennessee should put an end to the discussion about this bill,” Stewart added.

Democratic State Rep. John Ray Clemmons “said there was no way proponents of the legislation could continue to defend it in light of Slatery’s opinion,” The Tennessean reports.

The bill is supported by anti-LGBT groups, including the Alliance for Defending Freedom and the Family Action Council. Anti-LGBT groups recently have stepped up, promising to defend anti-LGBT laws in court if challenged, as incentive for lawmakers to pass what they know to be unconstitutional or illegal legislation.

 

Image via Office of the Attorney General and Reporter
Herbert H. Slatery
 III

Hat tip: Equality Case Files

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OPINION

Don Jr. Suggests Trump’s New Social Media Site Was Created to Help Republicans Win Elections

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Donald Trump, Jr. is appearing to suggest his father’s new social media platform, Truth Social, was created to help Republicans win elections.

Appearing on far right host Sebastian Gorka’s Newsmax show that aired Sunday, Trump Jr. was asked in a segment about the new social media site what his “specific message” is “to those who had just kind of given up on the idea of America and free and fair elections.”

Trump Jr. did not hesitate.

“Let’s stay in the game,” he replied, after discussing Truth Social for several minutes and urging viewers to join. “I mean, you know, these are all steps that we’re taking to make sure that we can level that playing field, the playing field has been so biased for so long, right?” he claimed.

“We’ve been playing T ball while the other side has been playing hardball and doing whatever it takes,” Trump Jr. said, despite some Republicans working to overturn the free and fair 2020 presidential election.

“You know, Donald Trump opened the door for conservatives to start pushing back, to play the game the way the other side has done it. We need to keep doing that, we need to stay in this game. They would love for us just to tuck tail to run to turn the other cheek to be dejected, to take our ball and go home. We can’t allow that to happen, we have to stay in the game we have to stay involved we have to be vocal and we have to be unafraid.”

And even though Facebook was formed in 2004, Twitter in 2006, Microsoft in 1980, and Apple in 1976,  he also seemed to suggest that “Big Tech” or social media platforms have been working against Republicans for 50 years.

“And if we do that and you look at what’s going on right now with the insanity of this administration and all of the leftist agenda, you realize, Americans are waking up. It’s about time, but they’re finally doing it and we’re actually able to put up a front against a huge, huge platform that has been working against us, for half a century.”

Watch:

 

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COMMENTARY

‘Just Three Words: Call Your Lawyer’: Legal Experts Weigh in on Bombshell Report Naming Republicans Involved in Jan. 6

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Legal experts including a Harvard professor and a top election and voting rights law attorney are weighing in on Sunday night’s bombshell report from Rolling Stone naming members of Congress and the Trump administration who were involved in the planning and organizing of the January 6 rally and/or “Trump’s efforts to overturn his election loss,” according to two of the planners of the “Stop the Steal” rally.

Rolling Stone reports “planners of the pro-Trump rallies that took place in Washington, D.C., have begun communicating with congressional investigators and sharing new information about what happened when the former president’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol. Two of these people have spoken to Rolling Stone extensively in recent weeks and detailed explosive allegations that multiple members of Congress were intimately involved in planning both Trump’s efforts to overturn his election loss and the Jan. 6 events that turned violent.”

Those named in the Rolling Stone report as allegedly being involved include Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), and these members of Congress or their staffers: Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO), Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX).

Harvard professor, CNN Analyst, Grip Mobility CEO, well-known national security expert and former Obama Homeland Security official Juliette Kayyem says clearly: “Mark Meadows, just three words: call your lawyer.”

Marc Elias, a top election law attorney who oversaw the 50-state response to the Trump campaign’s attempts contesting the 2020 election for the DNC calls for every member of Congress involved to be “expelled.”

Elie Mystal, the Justice Correspondent for The Nation says this is a matter for the DOJ:

“The potential that Members of Congress were deeply involved in the failed Trump Coup is another reason AG Garland must appoint a Special Counsel to investigate Jan. 6th,” says former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean, who also makes clear this is a matter for DOJ. “There are Congressional staff who can testify to the involvement of Members.”

Glenn Kirschner, a former federal prosecutor for 30 years, is calling it the “mother of all cover-ups.”

Attorney Maya Wiley, an MSNBC and NBC News Legal Analyst and senior vice president for social justice at The New School says it “Certainly explains how hard GOP tried to derail” the January 6 Committee.

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CORRUPTION

Pro-Trump Activists Reveal Republican Elected Officials Who Participated in Planning of Jan. 6 Rallies: Report

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A slate of Republican members of Congress is being outed by those who attended planning meetings for the protest that resulted in the attack on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, according to a new report in Rolling Stone.

Two sources, according to their story, revealed that Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO), Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ), and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) were all present on “dozens” of calls with organizers of the group.

Trump aide Katrina Pierson was also named by them a “liaison” between the White House and the rally organizers. Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows was cited as someone who also aided the group.

“I remember Marjorie Taylor Greene specifically,” the organizer told Rolling Stone. “I remember talking to probably close to a dozen other members at one point or another or their staffs.”

The former president also spoke to the group, saying that they were going to march to the U.S. Capitol and tell the members of Congress that they needed to hand Trump the election. He promised that he would lead them and walk with them, but that never happened.

“These two sources also helped plan a series of demonstrations that took place in multiple states around the country in the weeks between the election and the storming of the Capitol,” said Rolling Stone. “According to these sources, multiple people associated with the March for Trump and Stop the Steal events that took place during this period communicated with members of Congress throughout this process.”

“We would talk to Boebert’s team, Cawthorn’s team, Gosar’s team like back to back to back to back,” the organizer recalled.

While there have been reports of officials being part of the planning, this is the first report from those involved on the inside, willing to go on the record with investigators and the press.

“Nick Dyer, who is Greene’s communications director, said she was solely involved in planning to object to the electoral certification on the House floor,” said the report. “Spokespeople for the other members of Congress, who the sources describe as involved in the planning for protests, did not respond to requests for comment.”

“Congresswoman Greene and her staff were focused on the Congressional election objection on the House floor and had nothing to do with planning of any protest,” Dyer said in an email.

“She objected just like Democrats who have objected to Republican presidential victories over the years,” Dyer wrote, which is incorrect. No Democrats have ever attempted to stop certification of election results. Greene’s office named a list of Democrats, falsely saying that they attempted to do exactly that when it came to President Donald Trump in 2017.

Dyer went on to say that no one in the U.S. cares about Jan. 6.

Ali Alexander, the original organizer of the event is now in hiding, but he’s already said in a since-deleted video that Gosar, Brooks, and Biggs all aided his efforts for the event.

“I was the person who came up with the Jan. 6 idea with Congressman Gosar, Congressman Mo Brooks, and Congressman Andy Biggs,” Alexander said in the video. “We four schemed up on putting maximum pressure on Congress while they were voting so that — who we couldn’t lobby — we could change the hearts and the minds of Republicans who were in that body hearing our loud roar from outside.”

When he organized an event in Phoenix, Gosar was the main speaker. Alexander even referred to him as “my captain” and called him “one of the other heroes has been Congressman Andy Biggs.”

“He just couldn’t help himself but go on his live [feed] and just talk about everything that he did and who he talked to,” one of the planners told Rolling Stone about Alexander. “So, he, like, really told on himself.”

“The breaking point for me [on Jan. 6 was when] Trump starts talking about walking to the Capitol,” said the organizer. “I was like. ‘Let’s get the f*ck out of here.'”

“I do kind of feel abandoned by Trump,” the planner added. “I’m actually pretty pissed about it, and I’m pissed at him. What the f*ck?”

“I have no problem openly testifying,” the planner also said.

Read the full report at Rolling Stone.

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