Nauert has attacked the press, lied about the US voting against a death penalty resolution protecting LGBT people, and was apparently unaware North Korea “has the bomb.”
President Donald Trump reportedly has offered the position of U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations to Heather Nauert, the current, and controversial, spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State, Fox News reports. Nauert, should she accept and be confirmed by the Senate, would replace outgoing Ambassador and former Governor Nikki Haley.
Nauert’s time at State has been controversial. A Rex Tillerson appointee, Nauert has no actual diplomatic experience, foreign policy experience, or government experience, but she is a former “Fox & Friends” co-host.
Earlier this year Nauert touted America’s “strong relationship with the government of Germany” by citing the invasion of Normandy. The U.S. and Germany were on opposing sides in World War II, as MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow noted:
D-Day is not really the thing you want to cite when you’re talking about the strength of the relationship between the U.S. and Germany. pic.twitter.com/UOCoGY5bSH
— Maddow Blog (@MaddowBlog) June 7, 2018
Nauert last year apparently was unaware that North Korea, as former Obama-era Director of the Office of Government Ethics noted, “has the bomb.”
The same Heather Nauert who doesn’t know North Korea has the bomb? pic.twitter.com/USLl9u6sB5
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) November 1, 2018
And in June, Nauert earned a good dose of mockery after trying to attack CNN, President Trump’s favorite media target. She tweeted a photo of the president with a group of children, writing, Hey @cnn where was @Potus today?
Some, including a TIME political correspondent, reminded Nauert that the event was closed to the press, so they couldn’t cover it:
One possible explanation for lack of coverage of this event could be that it was closed to the press. https://t.co/eoOKyhVd0y
— Phil Elliott (@Philip_Elliott) June 11, 2018
But perhaps her most egregious offense took place last year in October, when Nauert lied about why the United States voted against a United Nations resolution that condemns the use of the death penalty for same-sex relations and other acts.
Nauert told reporters the U.S. voted against the resolution in part because it “called for the abolition of the death penalty altogether.”
That was absolutely false. The State Dept. also refused to respond to NCRM’s inquiry asking for an explanation.
Nauert was brought in under Trump-appointed Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and earlier this year was also given the title Acting Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs.
While some in the Trump administration have praised Nauert’s diligence in juggling two jobs at once, considering she is ill-prepared for either, others elsewhere have been more objective.
“Some foreign policy experts and former State Department officials argue Nauert is ill-prepared to lead US efforts to thwart ISIS propaganda and Russian disinformation, guide state-run media on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, and oversee some 275 US embassies and consulates around the world,” a Business Insider report noted in August. “They say she simply doesn’t have the bandwidth to handle these significant responsibilities on top of her job as spokeswoman.”
Image by US Dept. of State via Flickr
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Bipartisan Moderate Senators Announce Agreement on Infrastructure Focused on No Tax Increases for the Wealthy
A bipartisan group of moderate Senators, five Democrats and five Republicans, have just announced agreement on an infrastructure bill focused on not raising taxes on the wealthy. The outlines of the package would be $1.2 trillion, but only $579 billion in new spending.
President Joe Biden’s original proposal was for a $2.3 trillion package that including tax increases on the wealthiest Americans. After Republicans refused he dropped it to $1.7 trillion, but again Republicans refused. Biden again came down, offering a stripped down $1 trillion package that would be paid for, at least in part, by forcing companies that pay no federal income taxes, like Amazon, to have to pay taxes.
Republicans again refused and earlier this week President Biden ended negotiations with Republican Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, saying he would focus on moderate Senators instead. The White House was reportedly not consulted on this agreement.
The group of Senators includes:
Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Susan Collins (R-ME), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Rob Portman (R-OH), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Jon Tester (D-MT), Mark Warner (D-VA).
In a statement they say they have “worked in good faith and reached a bipartisan agreement on a realistic compromise framework to modernize our nation’s infrastructure and energy technologies.”
“This investment would be fully paid for and not include tax increases,” which appears to be the goal of the agreement.
NEW: The Senate group of 5 Democrats and 5 Republicans says they have “reached a bipartisan agreement on a realistic, compromise framework” on infrastructure:
They say the plan would be “fully paid for” without tax increases pic.twitter.com/T3Il67bp72
— Andrew Solender (@AndrewSolender) June 10, 2021
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.
MSNBC’s Morning Joe Rips Apart Report on Trump’s Infamous Lafayette Park Photo Op
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough ripped apart the excuses offered by a Donald Trump appointee about his infamous June 1, 2020, photo op at Lafayette Square.
Federal agents fired chemical irritants at peaceful protesters ahead of the visit, where Trump held up a Bible in front of a historic church, but the Interior Department’s inspector general found the park was cleared so a contractor could install fencing, and the “Morning Joe” host was skeptical that then-attorney general William Barr would have been involved in mundane decisions about park maintenance.
“He could be the director for scaffolding of Lafayette Park, I apologize to William Barr,” Scarborough said. “I didn’t know he could try to undermine Jeffersonian democracy, undercut 220 years of checks and balances, and be responsible for scaffolding in Lafayette Park. If that’s the case, I apologize. But if not, then again, we look at the part where he comes out before Trump comes out, and he asks this question. ‘Are these people still going to be here when POTUS comes out?'” Scarborough said. “The operations commander replies to Mr. Barr, ‘Are you freaking kidding me?’ He then hung his head and walked away, the report said, and soon after the new director of scaffolding for Lafayette Park came out and in no uncertain terms told them to clear the park before Donald Trump came out, the violent confrontation began.”
“Children, take from that bedtime story or morning story, anything you want to take from it,” he continued. “But actually, if you use your mind — by the way, I apologize, that [Bible is] not upside down, that’s backwards. He’s [Trump] holding the bible backwards. As a certain Oklahoma senator said, I’ve been going to Sunday school for 50 years, and I’ve never seen anyone hold a Bible that way. But if it makes you feel better seizing on to a report that doesn’t cover the entire event and completely ignoring what the director of scaffolding for Lafayette Park said, you go with that.”
“But that’s awfully thin gruel,” Scarborough added, “if that’s what you’re relying on, awfully thin gruel. Good luck with that.”
‘Point of No Return’ and ‘Crazy’: Trump White House Counsel Don McGahn’s Judiciary Committee Testimony Just Released
The House Judiciary Committee has just released the 241-page transcript of testimony given last week by former Trump White House Counsel Don McGahn.
“All told, Mr. McGahn’s testimony gives us a fresh look at how dangerously close President Trump brought us to, in Mr. McGahn’s words, the ‘point of no return,’” Chairman Jerry Nadler says.
In one point McGahn is questioned about his remarks that President Donald Trump asked him to do some “crazy shit.”
In the transcript, House Judiciary Oversight Counsel Sarah Istel asks McGahn to read a sentence from prior testimony. This starts with McGahn saying “Okay”:
A Okay. Priebus recalled that McGahn said that the President asked him to do, quote, “do crazy shit,” unquote, but he thought McGahn did not tell him the specifics of the President’s request because McGahn was trying to protect Priebus from what he did not need to know.
Q So, even if you don’t recall saying those specific words, is that a fair characterization of how you viewed the President’s request?
A Well, the President probably thinks this is an unfair characterization, but I —
Q I’m asking for your opinion.
A — think — I think it’s fair.
Q Can you just repeat that for the record? You think it’s fair?
A I think it’s fair.
Q Thank you.
You can read the document below, or at the House Judiciary website (PDF download).
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