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Sore-Loser Governor’s Last Act: Pardons for Hundreds – Including Killer Whose Family Raised $21,500 for Re-Election

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Outgoing Tea Party Republican Governor Matt Bevin of Kentucky has now pardoned hundreds of convicts since he lost a close re-election race one month ago. Among those benefitting from his exit are five convicted killers and other violent felons. One of the men receiving a pardon just happens to have family members who hosted a high-dollar fundraiser for the governor’s re-election campaign this past summer.

Gov. Bevin issued 428 pardons in the month before leaving office this week under objection. Bevin wanted to challenge the election results but Kentucky does not have a law mandating it and he was unsuccessful.

41-year old Patrick Brian Baker received an unconditional pardon from his 19-year prison sentence this week after being convicted in 2017 “of reckless homicide, first-degree robbery, impersonating a peace officer and tampering with physical evidence,” The Times-Tribune reports. The victim’s wife and three children were in the home when the acts  occurred.

Saying, “I’ve never seen a more compelling or complete case … the evidence was just overwhelming,” Judge David L. Williams had lamented at sentencing the convicted felon could be imprisoned for only 19 years.

“I believe it would be a miscarriage of justice to do any less,” Williams added. “It’s 19 years because that’s all I can give you…if I could give you more, I would.”

But as Newsweek reports, “Baker’s brother and sister in law, Eric and Kathryn Baker, hosted a fundraiser for Bevin at their home in Corbin, Kentucky, in July last year,” according to The Courier Journal. They raised a whopping $21,500. The pair added $4000 to the pot as well.

Baker’s co-defendants are not receiving pardons, despite the fact it was Baker who pulled the trigger.

Others receiving pardons “include one offender convicted of raping a child, another who hired a hit man to kill his business partner and a third who killed his parents.”

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

 

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Cruz Flayed for Mocking AOC for Fearing for Her Life – After She Raised $5 Million for Texas Storm Victims

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U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) delivered what many are calling “unhinged” remarks at CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, Friday.

During his speech he once again appeared to try to incite an insurrection, attacked President Joe Biden, screamed for over a minute, closed his speech by yelling at the top of his lungs, “Freedom!” and mocked U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) who raised over $5 million for Texas storm victims – Cruz’s constituents who literally struggled to stay alive in sub-freezing temperates for days without power or water while he vacationed in Cancun.

Cruz name-checked William Wallace, who was portrayed by Mel Gibson in the film “Braveheart.” Wallace was a leader in the First War of Scottish Independence, and was put to death for treason. Gibson’s character been described as a “nationalist guerrilla leader” in the film, so it’s unclear why Cruz would be promoting him, given America faced an attempted coup last month.

“There is a natural pendulum to politics and the country will come back to sanity and mark my words, 2022 is going to be a fantastic election year, and so is 2024, as we stand together and defend liberty, defend the Constitution, defend the Bill of Rights of every American. In the immortal words of William Wallace, ‘Freedom!’” Cruz screamed.

But before he got to that point, Cruz mocked Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez.

Republican Tim Miller, who worked with Republicans Voting Against Trump and appears frequently on MSNBC, put it this way:

CNN’s Jake Tapper weighed in:

Democrats “control the White House,” and “they control every executive branch, where they control both houses of Congress,” Cruz screeched. “Bernie is wearing mittens. AOC is telling us she was ‘murdered,'” he says, mocking her for accusing him of almost having her murdered because he helped to incite the insurrection.

“And the media, desperately, desperately, desperately wants to see a republican Civil War. Liberty is under assault and what are we gonna do? I’ll tell you. We will fight. Liberty,” he says, once again appearing to push for insurrection.

Watch:

Here’s how people are responding:

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‘Russian’ Sen. Ron Johnson Hammered for ‘Pants on Fire’ Lie January 6 Capitol Coup Wasn’t ‘Armed Insurrection’

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Embattled Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, a die-hard Trump supporter, is under attack after claiming the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol wasn’t an “armed insurrection.”

“This didn’t seem like an armed insurrection to me,” Senator Johnson told far right wing host Jay Weber on WISN, as The Washington Post reports. “When you hear the word ‘armed,’ don’t you think of firearms? Here’s the questions I would have liked to ask: How many firearms were confiscated? How many shots were fired?”

“If that was a planned armed insurrection, man, you had really a bunch of idiots,” Johnson added.

Up until just weeks ago Johnson was the Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, meaning more than most in the Senate he had unique access to those with direct knowledge of what occurred during the January 6 insurrection. In other words, he could have – and should have – checked.

Johnson, as many have noted since his remarks over the weekend, had access to Google.

Politifact quickly rated his claim “Pants on Fire,” and noted that not only were there many guns, but other weapons, including “explosive,” along with “knives, brass knuckles a stun gun and other weapons.”

“By afternoon, the officers in the Capitol were in a fight for their lives and for the seat of American government,” CNN reported January 19, about the day of the insurrection, in an article that uses some form of the word “gun” ten times. “They were left to their own devices, outgunned, without adequate protective equipment, unaware of backup, enclosed by people, many with weapons, attempting to take over the government.”

“One officer said he wouldn’t have begrudged any officer for firing their gun, but they were outgunned. ‘I got 16 bullets in my handgun, 28 in my long gun. Then what?’ he said.”

“At that point, I wasn’t looking for arms. But there were arrests with guns, a cooler of Molotov (cocktails was) found. We recovered 9 or 10 guns, found or taken off people. Guarantee so many more had ’em,” he said. “You don’t want to start a gunfight and have a bloodbath. We wouldn’t have won.”

Five days earlier The Washington Post offered this quote from Metro D.C. Police officer Daniel Hodges:

“I didn’t want to be the guy who starts shooting, because I knew they had guns — we had been seizing guns all day,” he said. “And the only reason I could think of that they weren’t shooting us was they were waiting for us to shoot first. And if it became a firefight between a couple hundred officers and a couple thousand demonstrators, we would have lost.”

Johnson was quickly hammered for his obvious falsehood:

 

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Reporter Roasted for Trying to Equate January 6 Insurrection Terrorists With ‘Antifa’ in White House Press Briefing

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A reporter attending Friday’s White House press briefing has earned national scorn after trying to equate the domestic terrorists and insurrectionists who engaged in the January 6 attempted coup that led to more than five deaths and caused about 150 Capitol Police to be injured, with the loosely organized anti-fascism movement known as Antifa.

“I think a lot of people want to know how does this administration define the term ‘domestic terrorist’?” the reporter, whose identity is currently unknown, asked.

“In what way?” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki generously and patiently asked.

“Does that include Antifa?  Specifically, what, how do you set those parameters for domestic terrorists especially as we see, you know a lot of focus on the January 6, maybe not as much focus on some of the extremism and violence in the north, the Northwest,” she sputtered.

“Well, I’ve answered a version of this question a couple times before,” Psaki replied, gently encouraging the fledgling reporter to do her homework before entering the hallowed room, “but I know everybody’s not in the briefing room every day. The reason we have the [domestic violent extremism] review – which is not a political review – but is a review done by our national security team, something tasked again to take a review of domestic violent extremism, will cover incidents, across the board.”

Many responded on social media, few were as gracious as the press secretary.

 

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