Fox News’ Tucker Carlson unleashed a furious screed on Tuesday night in response to California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff’s argument that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security focus their efforts on white nationalist terrorism.
“Listen to America’s new grand inquisitor,” Carlson said on air, introducing a clip of Schiff speaking.
In the clip, Schiff, who is Jewish, explained to CNN that the concern is not new.
“We have been urging for some time that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security raise the priority to domestic terrorism, to white nationalism, as it threatens the country,” he said. “And we’re going to continue sounding the alarm, and make sure that they’re devoting the time, the resources, the attention. Just as we did after 9/11 to the threat of international terrorism, we need to give the same priority and urgency to domestic terrorism.”
They weren’t surprising remarks, coming just weeks after the U.S. Capitol was stormed by a violent and deadly mob, filled with racists and white supremacists, trying to overthrow the constitutional order. As the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, it’s Schiff’s job to oversee the conduct of the agencies in question.
But for Carlson, the remarks were completely outrageous. To convey that message to his audience, he had to completely distort what Schiff said. The way Carlson chose to misinterpret the remarks was quite telling.
“Got that?” Carlson said after playing the Schiff clip. “Vote the wrong way, and you are a jihadi. You thought you were an American citizen with rights and just a different view. But no, you’re a jihadi. And we’re going to treat you like we treated those radicals after 9/11. Like we treated bin Laden. Get in line, pal. This is a war on terror. Keep in mind, as you listen to people talk like this — and Adam Schiff is far from the only one — they’re talking about American citizens here. They’re talking about you. But nobody seems to notice or care.”
It was a remarkable reaction. In the clip — the clip Carlson specifically chose because he thought it best illustrated his point — Schiff was explicitly talking about white nationalist domestic terrorists. This is indisputably a crime, not First Amendment-protected activity, and it’s a threat that the Trump-appointed FBI Director Christopher Wray recently warned about as an increasing peril.
“Within the domestic terrorism bucket, the category as a whole, racially motivated violent extremism is, I think, the biggest bucket within that larger group. And within the racially motivated violent extremist bucket, people subscribing to some kind of white supremacist-type ideology is certainly the biggest chunk of that,” Wray said last September. “Lately we’ve been having about 1,000 domestic terrorism cases each year. It is higher this year.”
The attack on the Capitol only highlighted this danger. It’s fair to worry that the new administration might overreact to this threat and that civil liberties might be at risk, as they were after 9/11. Those are concerns worth taking seriously.
But that’s not what Carlson said. Instead, he told his audience that Schiff is arguing that people should be treated like terrorists if they “vote the wrong way.” In fact, he even said that “you” will be treated like Osama bin Laden — that is, hunted down and killed — because of who “you” vote for. That’s not within the same ballpark of what Schiff or anyone else has said. This a QAnon-level conspiracy theory that Carlson is spouting on primetime cable news.
Carlson also showed his own prejudice and bigotry, directly implying that “jihadis” couldn’t be American citizens with all the rights that entitles them to. That’s false, of course — some terrorists who commit jihadist-inspired acts of terrorism are Americans. Even foreign jihadi terrorists have many rights that ought to be recognized. But it’s been people like Carlson and his allies who have consistently argued against the rights of terrorists when they happen to be Muslim. Despite his posturing now against the war on terror, he previously supported it. In fact, Carlson one called Iraqis “semiliterate primitive monkeys” who should “just shut the fuck up and obey.”
So it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that while overreacting to the idea that white nationalist terrorism should be targeted by law enforcement, Carlson also made clear that he thinks terrorists who are Muslim should not have any rights. He’s being perfectly clear about who he stands with and who he stands against.
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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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