House Appropriations Committee Forced to Explain to the Secretary of Commerce It’s Actually His Job to Appear Before Congress
Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross has had a challenging time testifying before Congressional committees. The 81-year old multi-millionaire (who once claimed to be a multi-billionaire) might be best known for wearing custom $600 velvet smoking slippers embroidered with his agency’s logo to President Trump’s first address to a joint session of Congress in 2017.
(Secretary Ross has also been accused of being a grifter in a multi-million dollar lawsuit, he’s been accused of failing to disclose his ties to Vladimir Putin’s “cronies,” including Putin’s son-in-law. He’s also been accused of failing to divest his assets despite a written promise to do so, and on, and on, and on.)
Whether or not Secretary Ross is an actual billionaire, he does act like one might expect those removed from what average Americans face.
During President Trump’s most recent shutdown of the federal government, Ross infamously appeared on CNBC and declared, “I don’t quite understand why” furloughed, unpaid federal workers were forced to resort to feeding their families via food banks.
On Wednesday, in a lengthy letter to the House Appropriations Committee, Secretary Ross detailed his reasons for refusing to testify before them. The Commerce Secretary is apparently under the mistaken impression that appearing is optional, like whether or not to wear $625 velvet smoking slippers, assuming one can afford them.
Ross writes, in part, “my appearance at this time would unfortunately distract from the Department’s important business before the Subcommittee.”
That was not an acceptable response, as the Committee Chairman, Rep. José Serrano (D-NY), made clear.
“The Secretary’s decision flies in the face of transparency, good governance, and the traditions that ensure accountability within the appropriations process.”
The House Appropriations Committee decided to up its game, taking the battle to social media, where it delivered a one-two punch mocking the Secretary of Commerce.
Responding to Ross’ claim that his appearance “would unfortunately distract from the Department’s important business before the subcommittee,” the Democratic majority on the Committee wrote that, basically, appearing before Congress is his job.
“Mr. Secretary, government funding IS the business of the Appropriations Committee.”
Take a look:
Mr. Secretary, government funding IS the business of the Appropriations Committee. pic.twitter.com/OACWJxdE5w
— House Appropriations (@AppropsDems) April 3, 2019
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Caitlyn Jenner Slammed for Claiming She’s Qualified to Be Governor Because She’s ‘Sold $1 Billion of Exercise Equipment’
Republican Caitlyn Jenner‘s latest interview is driving more criticism of her campaign for governor of California.
Asked what training she has that would make her qualified to be governor Jenner told CNN, “I have been in the entrepreneurial world.”
“People think that that you’ve been in show business, think of you as a reality star, certainly I’ve done that. But entertainment is a business. And you have to run that business. But I’ve also done other things,” Jenner insisted.
“You know, we sold a billion dollars of exercise equipment on television. Aviation companies. I’ve just always been involved being an entrepreneur.”
Caitlyn Jenner on what training she has to be governor of California: “I have been in the entrepreneurial world.” pic.twitter.com/SN9j74AFgs
— The Recount (@therecount) May 11, 2021
Her background did not seem to impress many, especially after Donald Trump’s presidency.
Christ. HELP US! https://t.co/jxFPIY7M3T
— Meg. (@MegSmith24) May 11, 2021
reality show 🚫experience https://t.co/amDhnZ1q7Q
— Maltese Mama (@tzmaltesemama) May 11, 2021
Dana Bash: “What kind of training do you have to be Governor of California?”
Jenner responds that she’s an entrepreneur. Sigh.
— Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) May 11, 2021
Government is not a business. GTFOOH with that bullshit. https://t.co/3PcUeXWebF
— Kyle (@TweetOfKyle) May 11, 2021
👏🏻 Running 👏🏻the👏🏻 Government 👏🏻is👏🏻not👏🏻like👏🏻Running👏🏻a👏🏻 business. https://t.co/idhllSyc1D
— Rob Houston (@Houston593) May 11, 2021
This is just another way of saying “I’m very rich.” https://t.co/UR23NczFAv
— Republicans are Pedophiles (@ThundrusWanderR) May 11, 2021
@Caitlyn_Jenner is trying to say she’s an entrepreneur, give me a break! You were doing low scale speaking engagements for peoples company parties for decades b4 “becoming a Kardashian” nothing you have done in life qualifies you to run the 5th largest economy in the world! Gtfoh
— Andi Politiko (@Andi_Poli2) May 11, 2021
I’ve been in the fashion world my entire career. That doesn’t mean I’m qualified to be the CEO of Chanel. https://t.co/O97E0vmHIf
— Susan Miller (@SusanMMiller129) May 11, 2021
Seriously people haven’t we had enough of TV and movie personalities trying to run government?? https://t.co/RhJKGRI7MZ
— algp (@A1l1g1p1) May 11, 2021
Oh, for fuck’s sake … https://t.co/Zm6j09S29W
— Republicans are doing active harm to the country. (@beth4158) May 11, 2021
Top Trump Allies in Full Freak-Out Mode Threaten Facebook Over Board’s Ban: ‘Supreme Court Should Overturn’
After the Facebook Oversight Board released its decision that banning then-President Donald Trump over his comments on the January 6 insurrection – including determining that he had “created an environment where a serious risk of violence was possible” – was appropriate, top Trump allies are in full outrage mode.
Mark Meadows, the former Chair of the powerful House Freedom Caucus and former Ranking Member of the powerful House Oversight Committee who traded all that to become President Trump’s fourth and last White House Chief of Staff, went ballistic, threatening the social media giant.
“It’s a sad day for America,” Meadows told Fox News. “It’s a sad day for Facebook because I can tell you a number of members of Congress are now looking at do they break up Facebook, do they make sure that they don’t have a monopoly?”
Mark Meadows’ immediate reaction to Trump remaining banned: “It’s a sad day for America. It’s a sad day for Facebook, ‘cuz I can tell you, a number of members of Congress are now looking at, do they break up Facebook? Do they make sure that they don’t have a monopoly?” pic.twitter.com/K0SSE0nKlF
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) May 5, 2021
Charlie Kirk, the head of the pro-Trump activist group Turning Point USA, which took in $28.5 million in the fiscal year ending June 2019, is close friends with Donald Trump, Jr., and once “interviewed” President Trump (photo).
Kirk seemed to think that the Facebook Oversight Board is part of the U.S. federal courts system (it is not), and that based on exactly no law, the U.S. Supreme Court should intervene to overturn the “outlawing” of Trump by an independent committee to a private company.
The US Supreme Court should overturn the Facebook’s “Oversight Board’s” “ruling” which upholds the outlawing of the 45th President of the United States from social media.
This is a big tech, corporate oligarchy without standing and it’s gone too far. Enough is enough.
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) May 5, 2021
House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy accused Facebook of shilling for Democrats.
Facebook is more interested in acting like a Democrat Super PAC than a platform for free speech and open debate.
If they can ban President Trump, all conservative voices could be next.
A House Republican majority will rein in big tech power over our speech.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) May 5, 2021
Every day almost all of the top 10 shared links, thanks to Facebook’s algorithms, are from the far right:
The top-performing link posts by U.S. Facebook pages in the last 24 hours are from:
1. Ben Shapiro
2. Ben Shapiro
3. Ben Shapiro
4. Fox News
6. Dan Bongino
7. Sean Hannity
8. Dan Bongino
9. Fox News
10. The Rachel Maddow Show
— Facebook’s Top 10 (@FacebooksTop10) May 5, 2021
Sen. Ted Cruz, who just had dinner with Trump at Mar-a-Lago, fear-mongers that there’s nothing to stop Facebook from silencing liberals, ignoring the fact that no liberals have ever incited an insurrection.
For every liberal celebrating Trump’s social media ban, if the Big Tech oligarchs can muzzle the former President, what’s to stop them from silencing you? https://t.co/Yky4P0B38X
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) May 5, 2021
Is there anything more Orwellian than Facebook’s “independent oversight board,” stocked with left-wing academics, deciding issues of free speech?
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) May 5, 2021
Trump-Loving God-Fearing MyPillow CEO Claims First Amendment Right to Lie About Voting Tech Companies
MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell is building a high-profile legal team to defend him against a billion-dollar defamation suit that he hopes will land before the U.S. Supreme Court.
The staunch Donald Trump ally has hired veteran First Amendment attorney Nathan Lewin and is getting advice from Alan Dershowitz for his defense against Dominion Voting Systems, which alleges that Lindell defamed the company with baseless claims about the 2020 election, reported The Daily Beast.
“I want to take this all the way to the Supreme Court,” Lindell has repeatedly said. “I’m not stopping.”
The 85-year-old Lewin helped prosecute Jimmy Hoffa for Bobby Kennedy’s Justice Department, and later represented Jodie Foster, former attorney general Edwin Meese, President Richard Nixon and John Lennon, and Dershowitz — who defended Trump during his first impeachment — gave a preview of Lindell’s defense.
“Our position is that Dominion is the government, for purposes of the First Amendment,” Dershowitz said. “The government delegated to them the most important governmental function, mainly counting votes in a presidential election, and they are therefore subject to criticism in the exact same ways that the government would be subject to criticism in that situation, and criticism of how the government conducted a presidential election is the highest bar protecting the First Amendment right to criticize such action.”
Dershowitz is not an attorney of record in the case, but he confirmed that he’s been helping Lindell’s team craft a defense.
“I’ve been on conference calls repeatedly with [Lindell’s] legal team, sometimes Lindell is on, sometimes he’s not,” Dershowitz said. “My role is to come up with ideas as they pertain to the First Amendment. I give them cases, and I suggest First Amendment theories — my role is limited to advising on the First Amendment issues at hand.”
Image via Facebook
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