As President Joe Biden is overseas working with foreign leaders to mend fences ripped apart by his predecessor while trying to position the United States as the leader in the climate change fight for the future of the planet, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) decided to inject himself into the news cycle, not by issuing a tweet or a statement or even a remark to a reporter, but by holding a press conference.
Here’s how Reuters summed it up:
— Reuters (@Reuters) November 1, 2021
To be clear, as NBC News’ Senior Capitol Hill Correspondent Garrett Haake notes, Manchin has already had more control over this than anyone:
The framework that Manchin is now trashing was one he negotiated more directly with the White House than probably any other single Senator. https://t.co/aXkutmtik7
— Garrett Haake (@GarrettHaake) November 1, 2021
Many on the left are furious.
Here’s Talking Points Memo founder, editor, and publisher Josh Marshall unleashing his fury:
man, fuck this guy. that’s really all i got at this point.
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) November 1, 2021
Some noted political leaders are supposed to conduct themselves with decorum and not draw attention to challenges the President of the United States faces when he or she is out of the country doing the people’s business. The mirror side of “politics stops at the water’s edge.” Manchin, who has held various elected offices for nearly 40 years – since 1982 – knows this.
So does historian and Politico magazine contributor Joshua Zeitz, replying to Marshall:
There was a time, when you and I were young (which wasn’t that long ago!) when a member of the opposition party wouldn’t dare do this to a president when he was abroad on a diplomatic trip. Let alone his own party.
— Joshua Zeitz (@JoshuaMZeitz) November 1, 2021
SiriusXM Progress host of the Signorile Show, Michelangelo Signorile says Manchin is “embarrassing” and “undermining” Biden:
I think it’s now abundantly clear that Joe Manchin is the one “embarrassing” President Biden while he’s out of the country.
Not House progressives.
Actually, he’s undermining the president while out of the country.
— Michelangelo Signorile (@MSignorile) November 1, 2021
In response, some noted Manchin “waited til Biden was at Climate Summit to sabotage Biden’s agenda and Climate commitments,” and “is “moving the goalposts at every turn.”
CNN White House Correspondent John Harwood observes that “Manchin used his press conference to vent about House failure to pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill that the House was on track to pass before he held his press conference.”
Popular Information founder Judd Legum also implies Manchin is undermining both bills on purpose:
Manchin couldn’t be any clearer that he is prepared to kill the reconciliation bill.
As long as he holds that position, there will not be enough votes in the house to pass the infrastructure bill. https://t.co/U0hST5My19
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) November 1, 2021
Punchbowl News co-founder Jake Sherman states the obvious:
After that Manchin presser, it is safe to say that a Tuesday infrastructure vote in the House is not likely. Let’s just say that as a baseline.
— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) November 1, 2021
Harwood sums up his thoughts:
more than anything else, Manchin really stuck it to Biden there
— John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) November 1, 2021
And CNN’s Keith Boykin sums it all up:
Live video of Joe Manchin helping Joe Biden kick the winning field goal. pic.twitter.com/xTcyeThPma
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) November 1, 2021
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Whoopi Goldberg Destroys Bill Maher’s Anti-Mask Rant: ‘How Dare You Be So Flippant?’
Whoopi Goldberg blasted HBO’s Bill Maher after the increasingly right-moving comedian declared he doesn’t want to live in pro-vaccine Americans’ “masked paranoid world” anymore.
On Monday’s “The View” Goldberg called Maher’s remarks “not really funny to people who have lost their kids” or “family members or dear friends to this,” she said, apparently meaning to COVID. (She obviously misspoke, saying the “vaccine.”)
Maher on his HBO show on Friday had said, “I don’t want to live in your paranoid world anymore, your masked paranoid world anymore, you know, you go out it’s silly now. You know you have your mask, you have to have a card, you have the booster, they scan your head like you’re a cashier and I’m a bunch of bananas. I’m not bananas you are.”
Goldberg continued, saying, “listen, nobody on the planet really wants to go through this, this is not something we’re doing because it’s, you know, sexually gratifying. This is what we’re doing to protect our families, and you don’t have to do it, but stay away from everybody. Because if you’re the one who’s not paying attention, and your confidence needs, you don’t want to then stay out of the public man. This is not, nobody wants this. I don’t want it. And I think he’s forgetting the people who are still at risk. who cannot get vaccinated. People who can’t get – little kids under the age of five. Yeah, well people with health conditions How dare you be so flippant, man?
The View’s Whoopi Goldberg goes off on Bill Maher for mocking COVID mitigation measures:
“That’s not really funny to people who’ve lost … family members or dear friends … This is not something we’re doing because it’s sexually gratifying.” pic.twitter.com/gxA3SQwNEC
— The Recount (@therecount) January 24, 2022
Backlash Grows Against McConnell as Viral Video Shows His Racist Remarks Deeming Black Voters Not Real Americans
Many across the nation paying attention to the Senate’s doomed voting rights vote – failing 48-52 Wednesday night, thanks to two conservative Democrats and every single Republican – noticed GOP Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s post-vote remarks in which he essentially deemed Black voters not real Americans, or in a separate class as the rest of American voters.
Calling the “concern” about minority voters having less access to the ballot box “misplaced,” McConnell told reporters: “because if you look at the statistics, African-American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans.”
This clip garnered one million views in less than 12 hours:
— Brendan Egan (@bse229) January 20, 2022
There are clips from different sources, all of which flooded social media overnight.
The outrage has been palpable.
Mitch McConnell is just a more politically savvy Jesse Helms, and if such a thing is possible, even more ruthless. “African-American voters are voting at just as high a percentage as Americans.” https://t.co/ZxV18QkiA3
— Van Firth (@Van_Firth) January 20, 2022
“Mitch McConnell didn’t say the quiet part out loud, people,” said political strategist Tom Watson. “He said the main plank of the Republican Party out loud.”
🚨: Here is U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell justifying his blocking of voting rights protections by claiming that, “AFRICAN AMERICAN voters are voting in just as high a percentage AS AMERICANS.” pic.twitter.com/3J6aGMvVpw
— Matt Rogers (@Politidope) January 20, 2022
New York Times journalist and “1619 Project” creator Nikole Hannah-Jones:
Once again: the white is silent. And we know why. https://t.co/b4gXoJcUf5
— Ida Bae Wells (@nhannahjones) January 20, 2022
NBC and MSNBC Legal Contributor Katie S. Phang noted: “After tonight’s vote, McConnell is just letting it all hang out.”
Mitch McConnell went on a live mic and said the only voters he considers American are people who aren’t African-American, and this crusty racist motherfucker has been a senator since before I was born.
— Fifty Shades of Whey (@davenewworld_2) January 20, 2022
Sociologist and Brookings fellow Victor Ray: “McConnell saying “African Americans are voting at just a high of percentage as Americans” shows exactly why they are targeting voting rights and who he considers fully American.”
Most Black Americans weren’t surprised at all by McConnell’s comment. We feel, experience, and live this sentiment every day in this country. https://t.co/trc3B6hb8V
— uché blackstock, md (@uche_blackstock) January 20, 2022
“McConnell did not misspeak,” said TV writer and producer Bryan Behar. “In one quote, he summarized the entire GOP worldview. They think it’s a White nation and anyone who isn’t White isn’t a true American.”
Tell me African-Americans aren’t Americans without telling me you’re a racist @LeaderMcConnell.
“African-American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans.” pic.twitter.com/hlIgxQPXiV
— Scott Huffman for NC 🏴☠️ (@HuffmanForNC) January 20, 2022
Mitch McConnell: “African-American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as American voters.”
Toni Morrison: “In this country, American means white. Everybody else has to hyphenate.”
— Mary L Trump (@MaryLTrump) January 20, 2022
This is how Republicans view black people, we’re not really Americans to them, this is why they will always make it difficult for us to vote.
McConnell: “African-American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans.” pic.twitter.com/QmJEPULvNg
— Alex Cole (@acnewsitics) January 20, 2022
JUST IN: Mitch McConnell just told voters of color that their concerns about voter suppression are “misplaced” and added: “If you look at the statistics, African American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans.”
The dogwhistle just became a foghorn.
— No Lie with Brian Tyler Cohen (@NoLieWithBTC) January 20, 2022
“African Americans are voting in just as high percentages…as Americans”
If you’re not white, you’re <insert race here> American.
In Mitch McConnell’s melting pot, the cream needs to remain at the top…at any cost.
— Smite!⚡️ (@7Veritas4) January 20, 2022
Legal Experts Blast ‘Jerk Gorsuch’ for Refusing to Wear a Mask – Forcing Sotomayor to Stay in Chambers
During the Supreme Court’s oral arguments on the Biden administration’s vaccine or test mandate in certain workplaces earlier this month some court observers noted every justice was masked – except one: Neil Gorsuch. They also noticed that Justice Sonia Sotomayor was participating from her chambers via telephone, while her co-workers were seated as usual on the bench.
“Sotomayor has diabetes, a condition that puts her at high risk for serious illness, or even death, from COVID-19,” NPR reported Tuesday. “Sotomayor did not feel safe in close proximity to people who were unmasked. Chief Justice John Roberts, understanding that, in some form asked the other justices to mask up.”
“They all did,” NPR’s Nina Totemberg noted. “Except Gorsuch, who, as it happens, sits next to Sotomayor on the bench.”
Public outcry was swift, and it includes legal experts:
“As a member of the Supreme Ct bar, I condemn in the strongest terms possible Justice Gorsuch refusing to wear a mask to protect his high risk colleague, Justice Sotomayor, from being killed by Covid,” wrote Richard Signorelli, a civil and criminal litigation attorney and former Asst. U.S. Attorney. “Shame on him.”
Constitutional law scholar and Harvard University Professor Emeritus Laurence Tribe, who has argued before the Supreme Court 36 times, called Justice Gorsuch a “jerk.”
“Gorsuch’s refusal to mask up on the bench even when asked by the Chief Justice to do so in order that the diabetic and hence immunocompromised Justice Sotomayor could attend in person shows just what kind of jerk Gorsuch is,” Tribe tweeted. He added he wished Gorsuch were not an alumnus of Harvard Law.
“Personally, I feel like we’re entitled to expect our Supreme Court justices to be better role models,” wrote former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, now a well-known MSNBC and NBC News legal analyst and law professor. “Or, at least, to have an ounce of decency. Putting on a mask would have cost Gorsuch nothing, but then he didn’t care about risk to front line workers, either,” she noted subtly, after the conservative Court voted 6-3 to block OSHA’s vaccine or test mandate.
USA Today columnist Connie Schultz quoted Dahlia Lithwick, an attorney and author of “Supreme Court Dispatches” and “Jurisprudence,” from Lithwick’s Slate column:
“The real problem with the court’s masks-optional policy? It reflects the court’s much larger rules-optional policy on everything pertaining to judicial conduct.” – @Dahlialithwick https://t.co/B8mZKymjaP
— Connie Schultz (@ConnieSchultz) January 18, 2022
“Gorsuch should be the one who is forced to isolate, not Sotomayor,” notes NBC News and MSNBC Legal Contributor Katie S. Phang.
Legal journalist Cristian Farias, a former New York Times editorial writer last week commented on Gorsuch and his refusal to wear a mask:
A couple of years ago, Neil Gorsuch wrote a whole book lamenting the loss of civility in public life. In it, he quotes a rule George Washington is said to have learned as a child:
“Bedew no man’s face with your spittle, by approaching too near him when you speak.”
Kid you not. https://t.co/Aicgtcolh5
— Cristian Farias (@cristianafarias) January 11, 2022
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