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‘Sick Irony’: Anderson Cooper Grills Florida AG Pam Bondi Over Her History of Anti-Gay Attacks (Video)

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GOP Attorney General Confronted With Horribly Anti-Gay Record in Wake of Orlando Terror Attack

For more than five minutes CNN’s Anderson Cooper grilled Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi over her anti-gay record live on-air Tuesday afternoon. Bondi was confronted with her horrible anti-gay attacks just days after the nation’s deadliest mass shooting, and worst terror attack since 9/11, which had targeted the LGBT community.

Cooper first challenged Bondi for positioning herself as a champion of the LGBT community on Sunday, when she said, “Anyone who attacks our LGBT community, anyone who attacks anyone in our state, will be gone after to the fullest extent of the law.”

The CNN journalist directly told Bondi that he has talked with LGBT people in Florida “who are not fans of yours and they thought you were being a hypocrite.” He then reminded her that “for years” she has “gone after gay people,” and “said in court that gay people simply by fighting for marriage equality, were trying to do harm to the people of Florida, to ‘induce public harm,’ I believe is the term you used in court. Do you really think that you’re a champion of the gay community?,” he asked a seemingly stunned Bondi.

The Republican attorney general responded by saying she was sworn to uphold the constitution of the State of Florida, and defending the marriage amendment was part of her job. It should be noted that when he was the US Attorney General, Eric Holder specifically told state AGs they were under no obligation to defend marriage bans if they believe them to be unconstitutional.

“I’ve never said I don’t like gay people, that’s ridiculous,” Bondi charged.

“Do you worry about using language accusing gay people of ‘doing harm’ to the people of Florida when doesn’t that send a message to people who might have bad ideas in mind?,” Cooper pressed.

“Anderson, I don’t believe gay people could do harm to the state of Florida,” Bondi responded. Cooper interjected, “But you argued that in court.”

“My lawyer argued a case defending what the Supreme Court allowed the voters to put in our state constitution,” Bondi said.

Bondi also insisted she never said same-sex marriage would do harm to Florida. “Of course not, of course not,” she told Cooper. “I never said that. Those words never came out of my mouth.”

“That’s what you were arguing in court,” Cooper insisted.

“You know, no. No,” Bondi responded. “What we argued was it was in the constitution of the state of Florida.”

Cooper continued to drill and grill the Republican AG, noting that on television she has been telling Floridians of a hotline they can call to learn the status of their loved ones.

“Had there been no gay marriage, no same-sex marriage, you do realize that spouses, there would be no spouses, that boyfriends and girlfriends of the dead would not be able to get information and would not be able to call or visit in the hospital here. Isn’t there a sick irony in that?” Cooper asked.

“Let me take it a step further. People aren’t right now who are partners and aren’t married, officially aren’t able to get information so we’re trying to assist them in getting information. Because early on –“

Cooper interrupted, “But isn’t there a sick irony that you for years were fighting that very idea?”

“I was defending the constitution of what over 69 percent of the voters put in the constitution,” Bondi said.

“But the courts, the federal courts said that’s not the constitution and you continued to fight it,” Cooper said, noting she took it all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court and that he “continued to fight it after the federal judge ruled and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars fighting it.”

RELATED: Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Battle Against Same-Sex Marriage Will Cost Florida Taxpayers $500,000

Bondi challenged Cooper, saying “we rushed to get it to the Supreme Court.”

Moving to change topics, Bondi said, “You know what today is about? Human beings. Today’s about victims.”

“It’s about gay and lesbian victims,” Cooper retorted.

“It sure is,” Bondi replied. “LGBT victims.”

“Is it hypocritical to portray yourself as a champion of the gay community when – I’m just reflecting what gay people told me they don’t see you as this.”

“Anderson,” Bondi, exasperated, said, “I’m not portraying myself as anything but trying to help human beings who have lost their lives, who are behind us right now in hospital beds, who have family members who aren’t getting the services they need.”

“This morning,” she continued, “you know what I’ve been doing? Trying to fight with a funeral home for overcharging family members to bury the loved ones. I’m not championing anything other than Floridians. That’s what this is about. We are about human beings.”

“I will say,” Cooper, unrelenting, continued, “I have never really seen you talk about gays and lesbians and transgender people in a positive way until now. I read your Twitter history for the last year and you were tweeting about, you know, National Dog Month and National Shelter Dog Appreciation Day, or Adopt a Shelter Dog Day. It is Gay Pride Month. You never even tweeted about Gay Pride Month.”

“Well actually, if you look at my website now,” Bondi urged, “we have hands clasped together, all different-colored, rainbow-hands people,” Bondi said.

An examination of Bondi’s official government website, campaign website, Twitter page, and Facebook pages here and here, show nothing that appears like what she mentioned.  

“Moving forward, do you see yourself as being a vocal champion for gay and lesbian citizens in the state?,” Cooper asked.

“They are citizens just like anyone else. Of course. My goodness, Anderson, we’ve had 49 people murdered, simply because they were in a bar at the wrong time. It’s horrible. I’m a career prosecutor. Those family members are devastated. These surviving victims are devastated. That’s what this is about.”

“I know a lot of gay and lesbian people in the state want to feel that the people that represent them, represent everybody in the state.”

“We’re human beings, and that’s what this is about,” Bondi said. “That’s what this is about.”

In 2014 Bondi filed court documents which claimed that recognizing out-of-state legal civil same-sex marriages would “impose significant public harm” and play havoc with existing marriage laws in the Sunshine State. She also implied that same-sex couples do not create “stable and enduring family units.”

 

EARLIER:

Florida AG Pam Bondi Personally Asked Trump for Donation Before Dropping Trump Univ. Fraud Case

Watch: Gov. Rick Scott Admits He Delayed Execution So AG Pam Bondi Could Go To A Fundraiser

Pam Bondi Files Emergency Petition Asking Clarence Thomas To Deny Gay Couples Right To Marry

 

Thanks to Politico for much of the transcript

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FASCISM

‘Just Shoot Them’: Trump Told Top US General to ‘Crack Skulls’ and ‘Beat the F’ Out of Civil Rights Protestors: New Book

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President Donald Trump told America’s highest-ranking general and top law enforcement officials to “shoot” civil rights protestors in Seattle and Portland, “crack their skulls,” and “beat the f–k” out of them, according to a new book by a Wall Street Journal reporter.

“The President would highlight videos that showed law enforcement getting physical with protesters and tell his administration he wanted to see more of that behavior,” CNN reports, citing excerpts from Michael Bender’s book, “Frankly, We Did Win This Election: The Inside Story of How Trump Lost.”

“That’s how you’re supposed to handle these people,” Trump told his top law enforcement and military officials, according to Bender. “Crack their skulls!”

Trump also told his team that he wanted the military to go in and “beat the f–k out” of the civil rights protesters, Bender writes.

“Just shoot them,” Trump said on multiple occasions inside the Oval Office, according to the excerpts.

But Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley (photo, right) refused, Bender reveals, with Milley and Attorney General Bill Barr often finding themselves the only ones willing to push back against the president.

General Milley, who made headlines Wednesday after delivering a stunning lecture on critical race theory and “wokeness” to U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who was not pleased by it, also pushed back against Trump senior advisor, white supremacist Stephen Miller.

During one Oval Office debate, senior Trump adviser Stephen Miller chimed in, equating the scenes unfolding on his television to those in a third-world country and claiming major American cities had been turned into war zones.

“These cities are burning,” Miller warned, according to the excerpts.

The comment infuriated Milley, who viewed Miller as not only wrong but out of his lane, Bender writes, noting the Army general who had commanded troops in Iraq and Afghanistan spun around in his seat and pointed a finger directly at Miller.

“Shut the f–k up, Stephen,” Milley snapped, according to the excerpts.

Read the entire report at CNN.

 

Image of President Trump and General Milley: Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead via Flickr

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WHATEVER HAPPENED TO COMPETENCY?

‘No Time to Waste’: DeSantis Blasted for Going on Fox News as Biden and Miami Mayor Urge Him to Request State of Emergency

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Florida GOP Governor Ron DeSantis is taking time to pose for the cameras and talk to Fox News in the wake of the stunning partial building collapse that more than 12 hours later has left 99 people missing, and feared dead.

DeSantis reportedly added an interview with far right Fox News host Mark Levin to his calendar for Thursday.

President Joe Biden during a news conference announcing a bipartisan agreement on, appropriately, an infrastructure bill on-camera Thursday afternoon urged the Florida Republican governor to ask for a declaration of a state of emergency, but DeSantis has yet to do so – nor has he declared a state of emergency himself for the Surfside disaster. President Biden appears to have ordered FEMA to Florida to assess the situation, which is the most they are allowed to do until the governor acts.

Also urging DeSantis to request a state of emergency declaration is Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, who says “there is no time to waste.”

Apparently DeSantis believes there is, and many are blasting the likely 2024 GOP presidential hopeful.

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NOT AN EXPERT

Watch: MSNBC’s Joy Reid Takes Down Architect of the Critical Race Theory Culture War in Epic Debate

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MSNBC host Joy Reid took on Christopher Rufo, the think-tank “scholar” who claimed to be an expert on race because he works as a “scholar” at a conservative think tank. Speaking Wednesday, Reid got him to confess that he’s neither an expert in race nor in law, which is where the idea of critical race theory is generally taught.

Rufo claimed that Reid was attacking him on air, which she corrected, saying that she was doing nothing more than reading the quote from his own documents.

Reid began by asking at what point “critical race theory” was invented, and he didn’t know, saying sometime in the 1980s or 1990s. Reid cited the Harvard University paper in which it was first mentioned in 1981 by Professor Derrick Bell, who died in 2011.

She cited Rufo’s “documentary” on critical race theory that cites professors or professorial types who he admits are academics who he claims are replacing equality with equity, which is a conservative charge Reid said she’s been hearing since she was in high school. “To ending individual property rights and even to committing reverse genocide or calling for reverse genocide.”

Rufo said that it wasn’t true, which is when Reid said she would play the clip if Rufo allowed her to do it, but he wouldn’t. He said that the term is counter genocide, a genocide perpetrated in retaliation to another genocide.

Rufo claims in his talking points that the father of critical race theory was Ibram X. Kendi, who told Reid that he wasn’t a critical race theorist.

“I admire critical race theory but I don’t identify as a critical race theorist. I’m not a legal scholar, so I wasn’t trained on critical race theory,” Kendi said. “I’m a historian and Chris would know that if he actually read my work or understood that critical race theory is taught in law schools. I didn’t attend law school.”

Rufo began to complain that Reid was citing things and not letting him answer, but she explained she wanted to go through her list of disputes.

Rufo claimed that he wasn’t a political operative, but Reid rolled a video of Rufo speaking at the Claremont Institute on May 18 in which he called critical race theory a political “cudgel,” meaning a giant political weapon. He went on to supplement his point by quoting Barbara Applebaum, who he said was a critical race theorist. She’s, in fact, listed as being trained in philosophy and education and “her research is heavily influenced by feminist ethics, feminist philosophy, and critical race theory.”

He also quoted American author Robin DiAngelo who did her thesis on whiteness in racial dialogues. She also is an education professor, not a critical theorist, according to her website.

“There are these very pathetic and very angry graduate students who try to fight me on these highly technical haggle interpretations,” said Rufo. “I don’t have time for this. Like I don’t give a sh*t.”

Reid noted that there again explains that critical race theory isn’t something being taught in kindergarten, it’s a graduate-level conversation among academics.

His argument fell apart from there.

See the videos below:

 

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