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After Sending ‘Thoughts and Prayers’ to Orlando GOP House Chair Blocks LGBT Protections Bill

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Republican Committee Chairman Also Denies Pulse Was A Gay Nightclub

Powerful GOP House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions late on Tuesday blocked a bill that would have codified into law President Barack Obama’s 2014 executive orders banning discrimination against LGBT workers by federal contractors. Those protections affect about 20 percent of the nation’s workforce.

On Sunday, almost without exception, every other Republican Congressman and Senator who even acknowledged Sunday’s terror attack that targeted the LGBT community, Rep. Sessions sent a generic tweet offering his “thoughts and prayers,” without mentioning that the victims were LGBT.

He made a similar statement on his Facebook page.

Rep. Sessions, a Republican of Texas, earlier Tuesday came under fire for insisting that Pulse, the site of the nation’s worst terror attack since 9/11, a horrific anti-LGBT hate crime, and our nation’s deadliest mass shooting, was somehow not a gay nightclub.

“It was a young person’s nightclub, I’m told. And there were some [LGBT ppl] there, but it was mostly Latinos,” Sessions told a reporter for the National Journal, as The Hill reported, somehow implying perhaps that Latinos can’t be LGBT.

This is the third time Republican House leadership has stopped the LGBT protections bill, whose lead sponsor, Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney of New York, happens to be gay.

The first time, the bill passed when the clock ran out, but House Leadership colluded by personally speaking with several House Republicans, convincing seven of them to change their “yea” vote to “nay,” while holding open the clock. The bill ultimately failed. They also bypassed House decorum, which would have forced those changing their votes to walk up to the clerk to make the change, but House GOP Leadership allowed them to do it electronically from their seats in an attempt to hide their names.

Democrats were so incensed they yelled, “Shame! Shame! Shame!” as the votes were changed. They vowed to defeat those who changed their votes in November.

The second time, the bill passed, but it was attached as an amendment to another bill, which failed in part because Democrats voted against it after House Republicans attached a sweeping anti-LGBT amendment.

Rep. Sessions is one of the most anti-LGBT and most conservative members of Congress.

He has repeatedly voted for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, voted to ban gay adoptions, voted against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which included LGBT protections, voted against prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation, voted to “protect” anti-same-sex marriage opinions as free speech, and voted to make a state’s definition of marriage supersede federal law on same-sex marriage.

RELATED:

Paul Ryan Changing Rules to Make Amendments From House Democrats Harder to Pass

Republican Prayed Gays Are ‘Worthy of Death’ Before Vote on Bill With LGBT Protections Amendment

Which Seven House Republicans Just Killed An LGBT Bill Supported By 7 Out Of 10 Americans?

 

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Former GOP Congressman Has ‘Legitimate Concerns’ Clarence Thomas Was Involved in ‘Push to Overturn the Election’

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Questions surfaced after Justice Clarence Thomas was the only member of the U.S. Supreme Court to oppose the release of Mark Meadows’ texts and information to the Jan. 6 committee. It turned out that in those text messages that the justice didn’t want revealed were communications with his wife.

Former Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA), wrote in his new book that he thinks Justice Thomas is far more involved in his wife Ginni Thomas’ 2020 election overthrow attempts.

Riggleman, who left the committee in April, included many of the text messages that had previously been released from Ginni Thomas, along with the note that he had a difficult time trying to get the House Select Committee to sound the alarm on her actions.

“Supreme Court spouses are typically low profile. Ginni’s involvement with political groups had already led to questions about whether Clarence would need to recuse himself in cases with a political component,” wrote Riggleman. If Clarence had been in the logs, it would be a much bigger deal than all that. When I began to suspect Ginni and Clarence had texted with Meadows, I put together a technical brief outlining how we might be able to cement the identifications.”

IN OTHER NEWS: GOP lawmaker leaves people baffled with his opinion of drug seizures

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) called him to express concern that telling Americans that such an influential figure had gone full-Q. Cheney was worried it would turn the whole committee into a political sideshow and overshadow all of the other work the committee was doing. The release of Riggleman’s book has left the committee members furiousover possible leaks after spending a year with so few.

Riggleman persisted in pressing Cheney to tell Americans about the Thomases.

“The committee needed to show the American people that there was an organized, violent effort to reverse the election—and that there were indications it could have been directed by the White House,” he wrote. “Thanks to their prominence, Ginni and Clarence would make a lot of headlines, but those headlines might overwhelm the other important work we were doing.”

The conversation with Cheney didn’t go well, with the two “type A personalities” duking-out their arguments. Riggleman argued that data wasn’t political. It wasn’t right or wrong.

“I also thought that, given Clarence’s position and Ginni’s prominence in conservative circles, the American public had to know what she had been up to,” argued Riggleman. “Some of the messages went beyond simply cheering Meadows on. It was legitimate for me to have concerns as to whether a Supreme Court justice had been involved in the legally questionable push to overturn the election. Was it possible that one of the country’s nine top judges was on board with an authoritarian interpretation of the Constitution? The implications were overwhelming. Cheney found it all improbable. I think she still had more faith in the institutional GOP than I did at that point.”

Riggleman’s book, The Breach, is on sale now and Raw Story has complete coverage here.

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Trump Sarcastically Prayed for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Health – Before Asking ‘How Much Longer’ She Had: New Book

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Donald Trump has bragged about how installing Supreme Court justices was one of the greatest things a President can do. By the end of his one term he had placed three far right wing jurists on the nation’s highest court.

As Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s health was failing, Trump apparently was looking forward to nominating yet another justice to the bench.

The Washington Post, citing New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman’s new book, says Trump derisively prayed for the 87-year old liberal icon.

READ MORE: ‘We Have Incredible Things’: Trump Surprised NYT Reporter Last Year by Boasting He Kept White House Documents

“When Ruth Bader Ginsburg was dying in 2020, the book says, Trump would sarcastically raise his hands to the sky in prayer and say: ‘Please God. Please watch over her. Every life is precious,’ before asking an aide: ‘How much longer do you think she has?'”

Justice Ginsburg was far from the only woman Trump spoke ill of.

The Post reports “Trump was often crass and profane about world leaders and others in his orbit. He referred to German Prime Minister Angela Merkel as ‘that b—-,’ according to the book.”

READ MORE: Critics Blast Top US Conservative Think Tank President for Applauding Italy’s Election of ‘Neo-Fascist’ Prime Minister

When Trump met British Prime Minister Theresa May, he brought up the issue of abortion.

“Some people are pro-life, some people are pro-choice,” Trump said, according to Haberman’s book. “Imagine if some animals with tattoos raped your daughter and she got pregnant?” Trump reportedly asked.

Haberman’s book, “Confidence Man: The Making of Donald Trump and the Breaking of America,” is 607 pages long and chronicles Trump’s time in the White House and in New York, going back as far as the 1980’s.

Among many other topics it also reveals Trump’s rarely discussed homophobia and transphobia. The Post says Haberman “reports [Trump] frequently made comments that were homophobic, particularly toward gay men, and washed his hands immediately after meeting someone who had AIDS.”

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Trump Uses Crude Anti-LGBTQ Language – Aides Stunned by Obsession With Staffers’ Sexuality: New Book

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Donald Trump often asked oddly personal questions about staffers’ sexuality and made homophobic remarks about those he perceived might be gay, according to a new book.

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman’s forthcoming book, “The Decider,” reveals that Trump’s obsession with appearing to be masculine drives his startling behavior, such as a meeting early in his administration with vice president Mike Pence and campaign aide Jason Miller, whom he declared certainly “likes the ladies,” according to excerpts published by The Daily Beast.

“You know how sometimes someone turns out to be gay later and you knew?” Trump said, according to the book. “This guy, he isn’t even like one percent gay.”

Trump was preoccupied with speculation about who in his orbit might be gay, and often mocked Trump Organization executive Alan Marcus as “queer” and “bragged that he paid the executive less,” Haberman reported, and former employees said he would show off photos of women with whom he claimed to have know intimately.

“They also recalled Trump mocking gay men, or men who were seen as weak, with the words ‘queer’ or ‘f*ggot,’” Haberman wrote.

Haberman described one episode from a week before the second presidential debate in 2016, when then-adviser Reince Priebus asked Trump a hypothetical question from the point of view of a female transgender student about using the girls’ restroom — prompting a response that prompted stunned silence.

“C*cked or dec*cked?” Trump asked.

An unspecified individual broke the awkward silence by suggesting “dec*cked,” and Trump responded by making a chopping gesture.

“With c*ck or without c*ck?” he said, according to Haberman.

An adviser asked what difference that made, and Trump suggested that detail would determine how he answered the question.

“What if a girl was in the bathroom and someone came in, lifted up a skirt, and a schlong was hanging out?” Trump said, according to the book.

ALSO IN THE NEWS: Trump is ‘quiet quitting’ special master case after making ‘terrible blunder’: legal expert

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