“What’s his end game? What’s his legacy? Where does it end? Who supports ‘Moscow Mitch’?”
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough is credited with coining “Moscow Mitch,” and he explained why the Senate majority leader won’t be able to escape the nickname he so clearly hates.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) complained Tuesday the sobriquet was “over the top” and “modern-day McCarthyism,” but the “Morning Joe” host told the GOP leader to get used to it — because it would end up being his legacy.
“You look at this guy’s legacy, and it’s going to be two things, I think right now,” Scarborough said. “He’s going to have a legacy of basically doing the work of Vladimir Putin, an ex-KGB agent, and Mitch McConnell has been told by the CIA, director of national intelligence, the United States military, he has been told by everybody that Russia is trying to interfere and disrupt our democratic process, that we are under attack, so Mitch McConnell is killing Republican bills like Marco Rubio’s, and Democratic bills that would protect the homeland from this attack from Russia.”
“‘Moscow Mitch’ is doing nothing about it, but he’s killing every bill, including Marco Rubio’s bill that simply says if we catch somebody interfering with American democracy, we will put sanctions on them,” Scarborough said. “‘Moscow Mitch’ killed that bill, too. ‘Moscow Mitch’ has killed every single bill that the intel community has said will protect America, so that’s his legacy, not protecting us from enemies foreign.”
McConnell’s unwillingness to protect Americans from the rising specter of gun violence would be the twin to his unwillingness to protect American democracy from foreign interference, Scarborough said.
“What about his legacy protecting us from domestic enemies,” Scarborough said, “people that would shoot children, first graders, the Friday before they go home for Christmas holiday with AR-15s, or people that would shoot wildly from their car in Odessa, Texas, and shoot 17-month-old babies in the back seat of their cars or would shoot up people going to worship Jesus in Texas churches that do nothing about it, or shoot up people going to Walmart for back-to-school shopping?”
“But Mitch McConnell, just like ‘Moscow Mitch,’ won’t do anything in protecting us from foreign enemies, he has been the one person that has killed every one of these bills to protect us from our domestic enemies, that are gunning down our children every day,” Scarborough continued.
“What’s his end game?” he added. “What’s his legacy? Where does it end? Who supports ‘Moscow Mitch’?”
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Stefanik Was Once ‘Laser Focused on Electing Santos’ – Now She Blames Voters for Electing Him as She Backs Away
One of the most powerful Republicans in the House of Representatives, U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), used her reputation and geographic proximity to help get fellow New York Republican George Santos elected to Congress. But now, as her donors and his express anger at being misled and lied to, and ahead of what appears to be a likely federal investigation and possible prosecution against the freshman GOP lawmaker, Stefanik is blaming voters for electing him to Congress: “Ultimately voters make this decision,” she said Tuesday.
Stefanik is the Chair of the House Republican Conference, a role she was first elected to when the now former Congresswoman, Liz Cheney, was thrown out of GOP leadership for telling the truth about the January 6 insurrection and Donald Trump. Stefanik was re-elected to her role after the November election.
Amid Santos announcing on Tuesday he is temporarily recusing himself from the two committees he was appointed to, Stefanik was asked if she regretted supporting his candidacy.
Indeed, one of the top reasons Santos was elected was Stefanik’s endorsement – and all the donor money that came with it.
“Stefanik’s team was laser focused on electing Santos to Congress – more than just about any other race in the country,” a senior Republican strategist involved in campaigns before the midterms told CNN. “Another donor, who attended a fundraising luncheon with Stefanik and Santos, confirmed to CNN through a representative that ‘he donated to George Santos because of Elise Stefanik’s endorsement.'”
It wasn’t just her endorsements. It appears Stefanik took great interest in getting Santos elected. CNN also reported that a source “said that a top political aide for Stefanik was involved in campaigning for Santos. Multiple sources told CNN that aide was closely advising Santos’ campaign and involved in hiring people.”
Stefanik’s spokesperson denied the allegations.
In July, Santos tweeted that Stefanik “has been one of my strongest backers and closest friends. I fully stand with her vote today as she stood up for civil rights. I look forward to serving alongside her when I’m elected to Congress in November.”
In fact, this was the banner atop Santos’ Twitter account for a very long time, up until recently:
Here is Stefanik tweeting her “major announcement” – her endorsement of Santos – on August 11, 2001, more than a year before Election Day.
“Excited to endorse my friend and fellow America First conservative George Santos for Congress in #NY03. @Santos4Congress will take on NYC liberal elites and bring a new generation of GOP leadership to NY and America. He has my full support!”
🚨🚨 MAJOR ENDORSEMENT ALERT 🚨🚨
Excited to endorse my friend and fellow America First conservative George Santos for Congress in #NY03.@Santos4Congress will take on NYC liberal elites and bring a new generation of GOP leadership to NY and America. He has my full support! 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/vGTnWW1ROY
— Elise Stefanik (@EliseStefanik) August 11, 2021
And in May of last year: “WOW! Great lunch event for @Santos4Congress! We raised over $100,000 to help George FLIP #NY03 George has my complete and total endorsement and come November, New Yorkers will send George to Congress! #SaveNewYork #SaveAmerica”
WOW! Great lunch event for @Santos4Congress!
We raised over $100,000 to help George FLIP #NY03 🔵➡️🔴
— Elise Stefanik (@EliseStefanik) May 23, 2022
She literally told voters that electing George Santos to Congress will “Save New York” and “Save America.”
On Tuesday, Stefanik told voters something very different: it’s their fault they voted for him, she said, taking no responsibility for her endorsements.
“Like all of my colleagues, particularly in New York State, I supported George Santos as the nominee, and the people of his district voted to elect him,” she told reporters – not once mentioning there was no Republican primary and Santos automatically became the Republican party’s nominee.
“Ultimately voters make this decision about who they elect to Congress,” Stefanik declared, wholly removing herself, her endorsements, and any possible assistance she or her campaign may have given to Santos or his campaign.
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 31, 2023
See the tweets and video above or at this link.
2024 Fundraising Fail: Trump Took in Less Money After Declaring Run for President Than Before
Donald Trump, the candidate who in 2015 vowed he would self-fund his presidential campaign, only to turn his White House run into a never-ending fundraising operation, is having trouble raising money.
“I don’t need anybody’s money,” Trump said when he launched his campaign in June of 2015 – despite quietly accepting over $14 million in the months after.
The ex-president, under numerous criminal investigations and facing civil court cases, now is “strapped for campaign cash,” NBC News reveals in an exclusive report. The embattled and disgraced one-term president who remains his party’s top choice, took in less money in the six weeks after he officially launched his third attempt to enter the Oval Office than he did in the six weeks before his mid-November announcement.
Trump is now revamping his fundraising machine and hiring a new company, Campaign Inbox, “to solicit the small-dollar donor set.”
The former president had built a massive fundraising database but decided to launch in November, which puzzled many experts. Some believe he did so in an attempt to evade any possible Dept. of Justice prosecutions. Even as far back as July those who know Trump predicted he would not only run for president again but launch his campaign early – to try to escape justice.
All this points to Trump returning to Facebook, if only to revive his “cash-strapped” campaign.
“Almost 50% of Republican donors log in to Facebook every single day,”Republican digital fundraising consultant Eric Wilson told NBC News, citing data from a survey connected to a nonprofit group he runs. “So if you are not able to reach those donors, you’re just at a huge fundraising disadvantage.”
Image: Shirley Preston/Shutterstock
Criminal Charges Against Trump Possible as Manhattan DA Presents Grand Jury With Evidence in Hush Money Probe
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has empaneled a special grand jury and prosecutors are now presenting evidence against Donald Trump in their revived investigation into hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels and one other woman during the 2016 presidential campaign.
Calling it “a dramatic escalation of an inquiry that once appeared to have reached a dead end,” The New York Times reports the Manhattan DA is “laying the groundwork for potential criminal charges against the former president in the coming months,” and says it “a clear signal” that Bragg “is nearing a decision about whether to charge Mr. Trump.”
Among the witnesses testifying is David Pecker, “the former publisher of The National Enquirer, the tabloid that helped broker the deal” with Daniels.
Prosecutors have also contacted members of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, and have subpoenaed phone records and other documents that could provide evidence.
But The Times notes that a “conviction is not a sure thing, in part because a case could hinge on showing that Mr. Trump and his company falsified records to hide the payout from voters days before the 2016 election, a low-level felony charge that would be based on a largely untested legal theory. The case would also rely on the testimony of Michael D. Cohen, Mr. Trump’s former fixer who made the payment and who himself pleaded guilty to federal charges related to the hush money in 2018.”
Cohen broke with Trump and in 2016, “made the extraordinary admission in court on Tuesday that Mr. Trump had directed him to arrange payments to two women during the 2016 campaign to keep them from speaking publicly about affairs they said they had with Mr. Trump,” The Times reported in 2018.
The payments were made “for the principal purpose of influencing the election” for president in 2016, Cohen testified.
He was sentenced to 36 months in prison.
“Days before then-President Donald Trump left the White House, federal prosecutors in New York discussed whether to potentially charge Trump with campaign finance crimes once he was out of office,” CNN reported on Friday, citing a new book from CNN senior legal analyst Elie Honig.
But they “decided to not seek an indictment of Trump for several reasons, Honig writes, including the political ramifications and the fact that Trump’s other scandals, such as efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election and the January 6, 2021, insurrection, ‘made the campaign finance violations seem somehow trivial and outdated by comparison.'”
Award-winning journalist and author Brian Karem tweeted: “As someone who worked extensively with [Michael Cohen] on the book ‘Revenge’ I can say this: Facts show that the MOST dangerous criminal case against Donald Trump could be made by the Manhattan D.A.”
Read The Times’ full report here.
This article has been updated to include Brian Karem’s tweet.
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