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GOP Congressman Blames Democrats’ Anti-Trump Rhetoric for Shooting of Republican Whip Steve Scalise (Audio)

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‘I Can Only Hope the Democrats Tone Down the Rhetoric’

Republican U.S. Congressman Chris Collins of New York is blaming rhetoric from Democrats against President Donald Trump for Wednesday morning’s shooting of GOP Majority Whip Steve Scalise, the third most-powerful House Republican. 

Falsely calling himself “the most-visible Trump supporter in Washington” – Collins was the first congressional Republican to announce support for Trump, and likes to appear on cable news shows to defend the President, regardless of the veracity of his remarks – the Western New York Rep. went on the attack Democrats.

“I can only hope the Democrats tone down the rhetoric,” Collins told radio station WBEN. “The rhetoric has been outrageous, of the finger-pointing, just the tone, and the angsts, and the anger directed at Donald Trump, his supporters,” Collins insisted.

He said that rhetoric “fuels the fires,” adding, “I can only hope maybe there’s something here that would say, ‘tone down the rhetoric.'”

In addition to being the first GOP Congressman to support trump, Collins is also a big proponent of Trump’s health care bill, likely because he is also the “biggest health stockholder in Congress,” according to a report in one of his local newspapers.

But there’s more.

“Collins is the largest shareholder in Innate Immunotherapeutics, a small Australian biotech company, and a member of the company’s board. And he’s been happily talking up the stock to his congressional colleagues,” HuffPost reports.

As far as toning down the rhetoric, Collins should consider heeding his own advice.

In January Collins accused Democrats of “wallowing in their sorrow” over Hillary Clinton’s loss, saying they “can’t get over the fact that Donald Trump won.”

He accused civil rights icon, Democratic Rep. John Lewis, of “pouting.”

“He lost, it’s like a spoiled child, and we’ve seen it with the others, they can’t get over the fact that they lost, and what do spoiled little kids do? They run around and throw a tantrum,” Collins said.

“That’s what we’re seeing there, they are pouting, and frankly, it’s somewhat enjoyable, to watch, because it shows you again how upset they are, and when they were so smug when they left Congress, knowing that Hillary Clinton was going to win.”

When President Trump was considering Mitt Romney as Secretary of State, Collins weighed in, calling the former GOP presidential nominee “a ‘self-serving egomaniac,’ a ‘loser,’ and a ‘lone wolf’ who might not be able to follow instructions,” the Washington Times reported.

Last summer he falsely claimed Hillary Clinton “has already said she’s going to wipe out the Second Amendment. She doesn’t believe in the First Amendment. And, she also believes in big government, which flies in the face of the 10th Amendment”

UPDATE: 2:09 PM EDT –
The Buffalo News reports in 2009, Collins “saw his dreams of winning the 2010 GOP gubernatorial nomination disappear after he compared Sheldon Silver, then the Democratic speaker of the New York State Assembly, to Hitler and said Silver may be the anti-Christ. Collins later apologized for the comparison.”

Remember, Collins says Democrats should “tone down the rhetoric.”

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Trump White House to Tell Americans to Wear Cloth Masks in Public to Protect Against Coronavirus Transmission

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The Trump White House is expected to urge Americans to wear cloth face masks when in public to help slow the transmission of coronavirus, in a reversal of current guidelines. The CDC says there is increasing evidence asymptomatic coronavirus carriers may be spreading the virus more than first believed, The Washington Post reports.

But studies going back weeks or longer made clear people who show few or no symptoms are “shedding” more of the virus – spreading it – at a rate higher than some who are fully symptomatic.

“In light of these new data, along with evidence of widespread transmission in communities across the country, CDC recommends the community use of cloth masks as an additional public health measure people can take to prevent the spread of virus to those around them,” the guidance says, according to a copy obtained by The Washington Post.

Social distancing and the stay at home policy are still recommended as the top methods to slow the spread of the virus. The cloth masks would protect others from the virus, not the wearer.

On Wednesday Georgia’s Republican Governor Brian Kemp came under fire for falsely claiming asymptomatic spreading had just been discovered “the last 24 hours.”

Image via Shutterstock

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HERO WHO DID HIS JOB

Navy to Relieve ‘Hero’ Captain Who Urged Help for 100 Sailors With Coronavirus: Report

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The U.S. Navy will relive from duty a nuclear powered aircraft carrier Captain after he sent a letter to his superiors urging help after more than 100 sailors tested positive for coronavirus.

The official reason will be loss of trust and confidence.

“Capt. Brett Crozier, who commands the Roosevelt, an aircraft carrier with a crew of nearly 5,000, will be relieved of his command, but keep his rank and remain in the Navy,” NBC News reports.

We are not at war,” Capt. Crozier wrote in a letter that was subsequently leaked to the media. “Sailors do not need to die. If we do not act now, we are failing to properly take care of our most trusted asset — our sailors.”

On Wednesday the Navy let it be known Capt. Crozier would not be disciplined or discharged.

“The fact that he wrote the letter to his chain of command to express his concerns would absolutely not result in any time of retaliation,” Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas B. Modly said.

That appears to have changed.

Four Star US Army General Bary McCaffrey (Ret). a former Joint Commander of SOUTHCOM, weighed in yesterday:

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FDA Changes Gay Blood Ban From 12 to 3 Months of No Sex Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

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The Food and Drug Administration has changed its ban on LGBTQ people donating blood, now requiring men who have had sex with men to abstain from sex for three months instead of 12 months before donating blood or plasma.

Plasma donations from those who have coronavirus antibodies are especially vital right now, as this popular HuffPost story shows, given the current pandemic. There are also shortages of blood across the nation.

The FDA’s “loosened” guidelines, which are now in effect due to “the public health emergency related to COVID-19,” are not necessarily permanent. They cover a lengthy list of people who should not donate blood. In addition to men who have had sex with a man or men within the past three months, it recommends a ban of those who fall in to the following categories:

Women with “a history in the past 3 months of sex with a man who has had sex with another man in the past 3 months,” donors with a “history in the past 3 months of syphilis or gonorrhea, or treatment for syphilis or gonorrhea,” donors with a “history in the past 3 months of a tattoo, ear or body piercing,” donors with a “history in the past three months of exchanging sex for money or drugs,” and donors with a “history in the past three months of non-prescription injection drug use.”

The ban on gay men is unscientific and discriminatory, given the ability to test for HIV infection, and given that men who have sex with women can still acquire HIV.

For example, a man who is married to a woman but has random or anonymous sexual encounters regularly with other women is fully eligible to donate blood. A man who is married to a man in a monogamous relationship still cannot.

Calling the new guidelines “imperfect,” GLAAD, which has been working on eliminating the gay blood ban since 2015 issued a statement from its President and CEO, Sarah Kate Ellis saying, “LGBTQ Americans can hold their heads up today and know that our voices will always triumph over discrimination.”

“This is a victory for all of us who raised our collective voices against the discriminatory ban on gay and bisexual men donating blood. The FDA’s decision to lower the deferral period on men who have sex with men from 12 months to 3 months is a step towards being more in line with science, but remains imperfect. We will keep fighting until the deferral period is lifted and gay and bi men, and all LGBTQ people, are treated equal to others.“

Anthony Michael Kreis, a Visiting Assistant Professor of Law at Chicago-Kent College of Law tells NCRM, “I’m glad that the FDA has liberalized their policy, but it does not really address the concerns about the stigma of blood donations and sexual orientation. Is there a good public health justification for excluding HIV-negative men in monogamous same-sex relationships? Is there a science-based rationale for excluding gay and bisexual men who are HIV-negative and using PrEP? These are important questions that need to be answered in the coming weeks because each raise significant questions about what’s driving this policy— the fit seems to be overbroad and, as a consequence, needlessly stigma-perpetuating.”

 

Image by Peltier Chevrolet via Flickr and a CC license

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