At 5:00 PM ET Monday the House will reconvene to vote on the rules for how the 118th Congress will operate – discussions which consumed now-Speaker Kevin McCarthy and his top lieutenants last week as they wheeled and dealed to get him the gavel. Few know all the details of what McCarthy gave away to win the coveted Speaker’s seat, but it took five days, fifteen different votes, some last-minute begging, and a Republican-on-Republican near-fist-fight on the floor of the House of Representatives before he was able to cinch the deal.
But not included in that 55-page document, according to PunchBowl News, is a “secret three-page addendum that McCarthy and his allies hashed out during several days of grueling negotiations with the House Freedom Caucus.”
Punchbowl News’ John Bresnahan on MSNBC Monday afternoon told Katy Tur that the “really controversial” secret three-page addendum is being “circulated” among some House Republicans but none are allowed to keep a copy, and it is not being released publicly. Presumably no Democrat has been shown the document.
The secret addendum, PunchBowl News also reported, “includes the most controversial concessions McCarthy made in order to become speaker – three seats on the Rules Committee for conservatives, freezing spending at FY2022 levels, a debt-ceiling strategy, coveted committee assignments and more.”
Indeed, while some House Republicans have claimed they were not given anything to vote for or to not vote against McCarthy, Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL), who placed third in the race for Speaker, admits he traded his slim prospect of becoming Speaker for a seat on powerful House GOP Steering Committee. Indeed, his name is the last one on the list.
One of there most controversial parts of the rules package is the creation of a“select subcommittee on the weaponization of the federal government,” which would investigate the Dept. of Justice’s current criminal investigations into the January 6, 2021 insurrection.
Some familiar with the U.S. Constitution’s separation of powers provisions suggest they cannot do this.
“This idea of ‘reviewing’ criminal cases in progress is really about interfering with them,” tweets former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance. She notes, “it violates separation of powers. MAGA Republicans know this. They’re setting up a situation where the AG will properly refuse to provide info, which they’ll use as a pretext to impeach.”
Norman Ornstein, an Emeritus scholar at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), and a contributing editor for the Atlantic, calls it “a test for these so-called centrist Republicans. If they vote for this horrible rules package, they are complicit in radical, dangerous extremism. Never, ever call them moderates or reasonable.”
MSNBC’s Steve Benen reports some of the deals McCarthy made, presumably which appear either in the 55-page rules agreement or in the secret three-page addendum, include a “Motion to vacate the chair,” and three seats on the Rules Committee going to the far right.
More bad news, not just for McCarthy and the U.S. but the world economic system.
“McCarthy reportedly agreed to pursue a hostage crisis that would force the country into a possible default, while scrapping the so-called Gephardt rule, which allows the Congress to suspend, rather than lift, the debt limit.”
It’s not certain McCarthy will get the rules package passed, certainly not certain it will pass on the first round of voting.
“Republican @RepNancyMace told me yesterday that she’s considering withholding her vote on the Rules package until she gets more information about the handshake agreements that Speaker McCarthy made with members but hasn’t yet disclosed,” reports CBS News’ Margaret Brennan.
Will GOP Rep. Nancy Mace vote on Monday in favor of the proposed House rules package? “I am on the fence right now,” she said. pic.twitter.com/SuZ4jkdw2h
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) January 8, 2023
The Freedom Caucus, which is the beneficiary of many of these “really controversial” secret rules, is the most far-right caucus in the House of Representatives. Its first chairman was U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), who now serves as its vice-chair. Its current chair is U.S. Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), reportedly under investigation by the FBI for his role in the January 6, 2021 insurrection. Congressman Perry refused to comply with a subpoena from the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack. Perry on Sunday announced he would not recuse himself from serving on the House Judiciary Committee, which has oversight responsibility of the DOJ and FBI, despite being investigated by them.
You can watch as the House votes on the Rules package at 5 PM live on C-SPAN.
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‘These Are Our National Secrets’: Democrat Slams GOP for Ignoring Trump Classified Documents Found ‘In the S——’
U.S. Rep. Jasmine Crockett (D-TX) blasted House Republicans for ignoring the hundreds of classified documents photographed on stage and “in the s——” at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort and residence, while going after President Joe Biden who she said not one witness at Thursday’s impeachment “inquiry” had identified what crime he allegedly committed.
“As I prepared,” Rep. Crockett told members of the House Oversight Committee Thursday, “I said, ‘What is the crime?’ Because when you’re talking about impeachment, you’re talking about high crimes and misdemeanors, and I can’t seem to find the crime and honestly, no one has testified of what crime they believe the President of the United States has committed.”
“But when we started talking about things that look like evidence, they want to act like they blind, they don’t know what this is,” Crockett said, waving photographs of boxes allegedly containing classified and top secret documents on stage and in a restroom at Mar-a-Lago.
“These are our national secrets, looks like in the s—— to me,” she said, as NBC News described her remarks. “This looks like more evidence of our national secrets, say on the stage at Mar-a-Lago. When we’re talking about somebody that’s committed high crimes it’s at least indictments, let’s say 32 counts related to unauthorized retention of national security secrets, seven counts related to obstructing the investigation. Three false statements, one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, falsifying business records, conspiracy to defraud the United States, two counts related to efforts to obstruct the vote certification proceedings, one count of conspiracy to violate civil rights, 23 counts related to forgery or false documents statements, eight counts related to soliciting, and I could go on because he’s got 91 counts pending right now.”
“But I will tell you what the President [Biden] has been guilty of. He has unfortunately been guilty of loving his child unconditionally, and that is the only evidence that they have brought forward and honestly, I hope and pray that my parents love me half as much as he loves his child. Until they find some evidence we need to get back to the people’s work, which means keeping this government open so that people don’t go hungry in the streets of the United States, and I will yield.”
Congresswoman Crockett’s remarks quickly went viral, with just this video getting 4.6 million views in just four hours.
Watch below or at this link.
Omg wow this pic.twitter.com/fnYcAXzcNf
— Acyn (@Acyn) September 28, 2023
‘He Knows I’m Right’: Democrat Mocks ‘Scared’ McCarthy and Blows Off Chairman Comer in ‘Very Unserious’ Hearing
During House Republicans’ impeachment “inquiry” into President Joe Biden, U.S. Rep. Maxwell Frost (D-FL) detailed Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s transition from refusing to allow a vote for an impeachment inquiry to ordering his top Chairmen to initiate an impeachment “inquiry” in the span of just twelve days.
Congressman Frost, the youngest member of the House, called the Speaker “scared,” before turning his attention to the GOP’s witnesses who he said “are not giving us any basis or giving us any evidence or anything,” angering Republican Oversight Chairman Jim Comer, who interjected, “That’s not true.”
Rep. Frost refused to allow the Chairman to interrupt him, and shot back, “Reclaiming my time.”
“These these witnesses are not giving any answers. They’re just asking more questions,” Rep. Frost continued.
While challenging the credibility of the GOP’s witnesses, Frost said there was “one witness who has a lot of questions .. one witness who knows something about accounting but has no real involvement,” and then accused the third witness, the well-known attorney and commentator Jonathan Turley, of “stopping here on his way to his next Fox News hit.”
Gen Z Congressman Maxwell Frost brilliantly sums up the hypocrisy, the fraudulence, and the illegitimacy of every single GOP witness that spoke today. And check out the startled reaction of that old angry Republican woman at the end. More of this!
— Dash Dobrofsky (@DashDobrofsky) September 28, 2023
Frost noted that had McCarthy put an impeachment inquiry on the floor for a vote, it “would lose on the House floor and be another embarrassment in the long list of embarrassments in this Congress for the Speaker of the House.”
He added that far-right Republicans threatened “to shut down the government, something that will happen in just two days.” He also noted, “this is the one that really got to [McCarthy], they said you, you’re about to lose your job and they said we will remove you as Speaker of the house.”
“And that scared him so much that Kevin McCarthy, the Speaker of the House, the United States House of Representatives, third in line to the presidency, completely caved due to the threats of people within his own caucus.”
Pointing to Chairman Comer, Frost on social media said, “He had to interrupt me because he knows I’m right. They say that this isn’t an impeachment, it’s an impeachment ‘inquiry’ to get answers. Then they call up witnesses that are just asking more questions and not providing any answers or evidence. This hearing is very unserious.”
Watch the videos above or at this link.
‘All Those Biden Towers’ Where ‘Influence Was Used’: Democrat Turns Tables and Mocks Republicans in Sarcastic Q&A
U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) turned the tables on Republicans during the House Oversight Committee’s first impeachment “inquiry” into President Joe Biden by sarcastically referring to “all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the US,” forcing the witness to correct him and point out he actually meant ex-President Donald Trump.
The hearing, chaired by Rep. Jim Comer (R-KY) was widely seen as another failed effort by House Republicans against President Biden. It took a turn when Republicans’ own witness, law professor and Fox News media contributor Jonathan Turley told them he saw no evidence that warrants an impeachment of the President.
Meanwhile, Congressman Connelly’s scathing remarks quickly spread across social media, garnering hundreds of thousands of views views in just hours.
“Um, well let’s see,” Connolly began, slowly, “I’m looking at, um, I heard again, um, I think it was professor Hurley talk about – – because he’s not prejudging of course, but he’s just suggesting that maybe we want to look into criminal activity like obstruction, fraud, and abuse of power.”
“So let’s take fraud. So shouldn’t we be concerned that a New York judge just found President Biden’s organization committing fraud every year for the last 10 or 15 years,” Connolly continued, “and that, under the Martin law, that Biden organization is now subject to dismemberment and dismantlement because of the fraudulent activity?”
“That should be of concern to Mr. Trump,” the witness, Professor Michael Gerhardt, replied.
“Mr. Trump again!” Connolly sarcastically exclaimed, feigning surprise. “And in this case, we’re not speculating, a judge actually made that ruling?”
“Yes sir,” Gerhardt replied.
”Should we be concerned about the personal – I mean, while we’re at it, while we’re loading on – shouldn’t we be concerned about the personal behavior of the President, for example, President Trump or President Biden, being found guilty of sexual assault and defamation associated with that activity, again in a civil court?”
“We should be concerned as it related to Mr. Trump,” Gerhardt again replied.
“With Mr. Trump again?” Connolly again said mockingly.
“I just think that one of the reasons we’re here is because somebody has been indicted in four different locales, on four different sets of concerns, with I think 81, 91 actual counts, and has been found guilty in two civil proceedings, one involving sexual behavior and one on actual corporate fraudulent activity. And we don’t want to talk about any of that. We want to speculate about discredited testimony from discredited witnesses,” Connolly added.
Brilliant stuff here from Connolly pic.twitter.com/F3rZlBmUe8
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 28, 2023
“Distract, deflect, dissemble,” Connolly added. “I think this hearing’s all about ‘look over here, not over there.’”
“I’ve heard concerns about ‘branding,'” Connolly continued. “So, shouldn’t we be concerned about all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the United States? I’ve seen these towers in Indonesia, in the Philippines, in Turkey. I even saw one in Chicago. Shouldn’t that be a source of concern of this committee in terms of influence, both foreign and domestic, when Biden became president?”
“If there were such things as ‘Biden building,'” Gerhardt said.
“Well, was there anyone who did have them?” Connolly asked. “Well, could you tell us? Just give me the name.”
“I think we’re talking about Mr. Trump,” Gerhardt replied.
“So, when President Biden appointed his son to manage U.S. foreign policy, both in the Persian Gulf and the Middle East peace, by the way, a son who couldn’t qualify for getting a security clearance, but President Biden apparently granted it to Hunter anyhow – and then, after leaving the White House, getting a $2 billion deal … shouldn’t that be of concern to us that maybe a sweetheart deal occurred with the blessing of the president, with foreign money, and shouldn’t we look into Hunter Biden for that, given the fact that the handled Middle East peace in the White House?”
“It should have been a concern with President Trump and his son-in-law,” Gerhardt said.
“Oh Trump. I got that wrong again,” snarked Congressman Connolly.
Connolly: “Shouldn’t we concerned about all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the US? I’ve seen these towers in Indonesia, in the Philippines, in Turkey. I’ve even seen one in Chicago.” pic.twitter.com/U10K2K5JSQ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 28, 2023
Watch the videos above or at this link.
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