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Scared and Dropping Like Flies: GOP Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas Latest Republican to ‘Retire’

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Smith Becomes 24th Republican to Announce They Are Not Seeking Re-Election

Republican U.S. Congressman Lamar Smith has just announced that he will not seek re-election next year and will “retire.” Smith, a climate change denying anti-gay member of the Tea Party Caucus from Texas has served in Congress since 1987. Smith serves as the chairman of the Committee on Science, Space & Technology, despite (or, given that Paul Ryan controls chairmanships, because of) his climate change denialism. He becomes the 24th in a rash of Republican lawmakers to announce they are “retiring” or leaving their current positions to run for another office.

Why? 

“For several reasons, this seems like a good time to pass on the privilege of representing the 21st District to someone else,” Smith says in an email obtained by The Texas Tribune.

That “good time to pass on the privilege” includes the fact that Donald Trump is president. Even though Trump beat Clinton in Smith’s solidly Republican district by 10 points, “several Democrats saw an opportunity to challenge Smith before he announced his retirement,” Politico reports. One Democrat has already out-raised Smith.

Smith has voted for a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage, voted against re-authorizitng the Violence Against Women Act, voted against prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation, and has a 7% rating from the ACLU.

What other Republicans are “retiring” or not seeking re-election?

Via CBS News:

Retiring Senate Republicans

  1. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee

  2. Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona

Retiring House Republicans

  1. Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pennsylvania

  2. Rep. John Duncan, R-Texas,

  3. Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas

  4. Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Kansas

  5. Rep. Sam Johnson, R-Texas

  6. Rep. Dave Reichert, R-Washington

  7. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Florida

  8. Rep. Dave Trott, R-Michigan

House Republicans who have resigned or will resign

  1. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah

  2. Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pennsylvania

  3. Rep. Pat Tiberi, R-Ohio

House Republicans running for another office

Senate: 

  1. Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Pennsylvania

  2. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee

  3. Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-West Virginia

  4. Rep. Luke Messer, R-Indiana

  5. Rep. Todd Rokita, R-Indiana

Governor: 

  1. Rep. Diane Black, R-Tennessee

  2. Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho

  3. Rep. Kristi Noem, R-South Dakota

  4. Rep. James Renacci, R-Ohio

  5. Rep. Steve Pearce, R-New Mexico

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

‘Invasion’: Texas Lt. Gov. Likens Border Crossings to Attack on Pearl Harbor – ‘These People Are a Danger to America’

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Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, a far-right Republican, is comparing migrants crossing the border into Texas to Japan’s 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor that killed 2335 people. He is calling it an “invasion” and says that gives the state the right to “put hands on people.”

Patrick, who because of Texas’ unique structure is more powerful than the governor, told Fox News on Tuesday, “we are being invaded, and if we’re being invaded under the constitution I think that gives us the power to put hands on people and send them back. Put hands on people and send them back,” he said repeatedly.

“These people are a danger to America,” Patrick said in a rant. It was unclear if he was referring to migrants or President Joe Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

The Lt. Governor, who has hawked the racist “great replacement theoryrepeatedly, and used the term “invasionrepeatedly, told Fox News that Texas is now spending $4 billion annually on the border, while Texas National Guardsmen and Texas Rangers complain of being called up to serve, having to abandon their regular jobs, for no apparent reason.

RELATED: Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick Blames ‘Video Game Industry’ for El Paso White Supremacist Terrorism: ‘We’ve Always Had Guns’

“This is the biggest danger we have, to your family,” Patrick says of the fentanyl crossing the border. “It’s all on Biden,” he claimed.

Last week Texas Governor Greg Abbott drew extensive criticism for using the deaths of more than 50 migrants packed into an 18-wheel tractor-trailer as a political opportunity to attack President Biden. Even some conservatives attacked Abbott for his inhumane remarks..

 

 

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BREAKING NEWS

7th Victim of July 4th Mass Shooting Dies

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Seven people have now died as a result of a gunman opening fire from a rooftop into an Independence Day parade in Highland Park, Illinois.

The latest victim succumbed to their injuries Tuesday afternoon, NBC 5 Chicago reported. Authorities have not identified all the victims, but have said five of those who died were adults. Another 46 people were wounded.

Police on Tuesday announced that the shooter fired at least 70 rounds into the crowd, using a “high-powered rifle” that is “similar” to a AR-15. They also revealed the suspected gunman planned the attack for weeks, purchased his weapons legally, disguised himself by wearing women’s attire to “conceal his facial tattoos and  his identity,” and to “help him during the escape.” He then walked to his mother’s house after the shooting.

Law enforcement Monday evening arrested Robert Crimo, who they say is a “person of interest,” but he has not been charged.

“There are no words for the kind of monster who lies in wait and fires into a crowd of families with children celebrating a holiday with their community,” Illinois Democratic Governor J.B. Pritzker said in a statement. “There are no words for the kind of evil that robs our neighbors of their hopes, their dreams, their futures. There are no words I can offer to lift the pain of those they leave behind. Please know that our state grieves with you, that MK and I grieve with you.”

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CRIME

Giuliani, Graham, Eastman, Others Tied to Trump Subpoenaed by Grand Jury in Georgia Criminal Election Investigation

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Rudy Giuliani, Lindsey Graham, John Eastman, Jenna Ellis, and several others including Cleta Mitchell have been subpoenaed by a Fulton County special grand jury convened to investigate possible criminal actions or interference in Georgia’s 2020 elections.

Giuliani, Eastman, Ellis, and Mitchell, along with Kenneth Chesbro, are all members of Donald Trump’s legal team or advised the former president “on strategies for overturning Democrat Joe Biden’s wins in Georgia and other swing states,” and are now being subpoenaed, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Senator Graham (R-SC) has publicly admitted to contacting the Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Also subpoenaed is attorney and podcast host Jacki Pick Deason.

“The 23-person special grand jury has heard testimony in recent weeks from a parade of witnesses, including some who had direct contact with Trump and his associates. But Tuesday’s subpoenas are the closest jurors have gotten to the inner circle of the former president,” the Journal-Constitution adds.

Eastman, the infamous author of the “coup memo,” is a former law professor and the current chairman of the anti-LGBTQ group National Organization For Marriage (NOM), which has never disavowed his actions.

“A federal judge in March,” the AJC adds, “argued that ‘it is more likely than not that President Trump and Dr. Eastman dishonestly conspired to obstruct the Joint Session of Congress on January 6, 2021.'”

In the days after the November 2020 election, The Washington Post reported, Sen. Graham “questioned Raffensperger about the state’s signature-matching law and whether political bias could have prompted poll workers to accept ballots with nonmatching signatures, according to Raffensperger. Graham also asked whether Raffensperger had the power to toss all mail ballots in counties found to have higher rates of nonmatching signatures, Raffensperger said.”

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