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OPINION

Democrat Hilariously Schools Furious Far Right Congressman Over UFO Bill: ‘You Voted to Block Your Own Amendment’

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Far right Republican U.S. Rep. Tim Burchett of Tennessee has only been in Congress since 2019, so perhaps he should be forgiven for not knowing how things work there.

Congressman Burchett became nationally known for his remarks against gun control back in March, just after a school mass shooting in Nashville, the capital of his home state, where three nine-year olds and three adults were shot to death by a shooter with two AR-15 style assault rifles and a handgun.

“We’re not gonna fix it,” Burchett infamously said. “I don’t see any role that we could do other than mess things up, honestly.”

Rather than even entertain common sense gun reforms, Burchett immediately decided the only thing that will reduce gun violence is God.

READ MORE: ‘Denies He Said Things He Said’: CNN Destroys RFK Jr.’s Congressional Testimony in Devastating Video

Saying, “you’ve got to change people’s hearts,” Burchett called for a Christian revival. “As a Christian, we talk about the church. I’ve said this many times, I think we really need a revival in this country.”

Also back in March, Congressman Burchett took a similar hands-off, laissez-faire stance on racism. He joined all 26 Republicans on the House Oversight Committee who refused to sign a simple two-sentence statement denouncing white supremacy.

So you might assume that the Tennessee congressman has a “live and let live” approach to things, given he thinks Congress just has no impact on people’s lives, but you’d be wrong.

In December, when it came time to vote on the Respect for Marriage Actvoted against protecting the marriages of same-sex and interracial couples. Seems he did think Congress can play a role in people’s lives.

Fast forward to this week.

Congressman Burchettt is very angry that an amendment he filed did not even get a vote.

READ MORE: Trump Promotes Threatening Video: ‘We Are Going to Do Things to You That Have Never Been Done Before’

“Congressman Tim Burchett (R-Tenn.) held a news conference on Thursday with congressional colleagues to announce an upcoming committee hearing and to demand transparency from the federal government over unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs), which are more commonly dubbed ‘UFOs,'” WBIR reported Thursday.

Burchett tried but failed to introduce a “late” amendment, and later “said he was told the amendment was shot down by either the House Intelligence Committee or the ‘intelligence community,’ saying he wasn’t totally sure who knocked it down.”

“This is ridiculous, folks. They do exist or they don’t exist. They keep telling us they don’t exist, but they block every opportunity for us to get ahold of the information,” he said.

He also vented his anger on Twitter.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, the Ranking Member of the House Rules Committee, stepped in to clear things up for the confused congressman.

“What are you talking about?” McGovern tweeted. “It wasn’t the ‘intelligence community,’ you voted to block YOUR OWN amendment. Are YOU part of the coverup?”

Apparently still confused, Burchett shot back: “Mr. Ranking Member of Rules Committee, perhaps your intern shouldn’t be allowed to run your Twitter account. Find someone who can fact check. This amendment wasn’t even given a vote in Rules. No one had a chance to vote on this amendment. That’s the problem.”

McGovern wasn’t having it.

“The problem is that you submitted an amendment, and then you voted for a Rule that blocked your own amendment. That’s why no one had a chance to vote on it. That’s how this works,” he said, schooling Burchett. “Also, I write my tweets myself.”

Read the tweets above or at this link.

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OPINION

House Republican’s Bill Aims to Put LGBTQ Children in Adoption and Foster Care at Risk

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In September, the Biden administration’s Dept. of Health and Human Services announced new proposed rules to protect LGBTQ youth in foster care or adoption agencies, and included the basic requirement that any child who identifies as LGBTQI+ be placed in a supportive environment, “free of hostility, mistreatment, or abuse.”

Now, a far-right MAGA Republican Congressman, Jim Banks of Indiana who is running for the U.S. Senate, has proposed legislation that could harm not just LGBTQI+ kids but all children awaiting foster care or adoption, by stripping federal funding from agencies that abide by the Biden administration’s protections for those children.

Rep. Banks is a far right-wing extremist who forged multiple congressional documents sent to federal agencies and voted to not certify the 2020 election. He is also an anti-LGBTQ activist and anti-science climate change denier who opposes a woman’s right to choose, Obamacare, and same-sex marriage.

“For too long,” the Dept. of Health and Human Services said in its announcement, “LGBTQI+ children have faced significant disparities in the child welfare system. LGBTQI+ youth are overrepresented in foster care, but face worse outcomes, including poor mental health, higher rates of homelessness, and discrimination just because of who they are in some foster care settings.”

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“LBGTQI+ children often have unique needs and deserve care that affirms their identities,” HHS noted, stating its proposed rule “would require that child welfare agencies ensure that each child in their care who identifies as LGBTQI+ receive a safe and appropriate placement and services that help them thrive.”

It would also “protect LGBTQI+ youth by placing them in environments free of hostility, mistreatment, or abuse based on the child’s LGBTQI+ status,” and “would require that caregivers for LGBTQI+ children are properly and fully trained to provide for the needs of the child related to the child’s self-identified sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.”

Fox News reports, “Banks’ bill, the Sensible Adoption for Every (SAFE) Home Act, would prevent child welfare agencies and related groups that receive federal funding from getting those funds if they refuse prospective parents who insist against the child’s stated LGBTQ status.”

That means parents could foster a 14-year old girl or boy who identifies as lesbian, bisexual, or gay and force they to say they are straight. They could adopt a 15-year old transgender boy, block him from any medication or counseling he might have been receiving, and force him to wear clothing that does not conform to his gender identity. Depending on state law, they could force an LGBTQI+ child into dangerous so-called conversion therapy that has been likened tom torture.

Congressman Banks told Fox News the “Biden administration is cruelly preventing countless children in the foster care and adoption system from going to loving homes just because parents are opposed to irreversible sex change procedures on kids,” falsely suggesting all LGBTQI+ kids are transgender and falsely suggesting all gender-affirming care involves “irreversible sex change procedures.”

“This isn’t a liberal or conservative issue. This is just plain wrong, and every sane person knows it,” Banks added.

READ MORE: ‘Does America Need More God?’: Mike Johnson Laments LGBTQ High School Kids

 

 

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OPINION

‘Hardball? You Bet’: Dems ‘Need to Be Prepared’ After McCarthy Exit Urges Top Political Scholar

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The American voters sent 222 Republicans and 213 Democrats to the House of Representatives in the 2022 elections, the exact same margin, but flipped, as the 2020 election. But today, with the announcement that ousted, former GOP House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is not only not running for re-election but is quitting Congress at the end off the year, Republicans have a big majority crisis — because of their now tiny majority.

It’s no longer 222 to 213.

After McCarthy’s exit, and with the recent expulsion of now-former Congressman George Santos (R-NY) Republican Speaker Mike Johnson will have a very slim majority.

“The party’s margin in the House fell to three seats from four with the expulsion of Representative George Santos of New York last week,” The New York Times explains. “That leaves almost no wiggle room for Mr. Johnson, who is already dealing with a revolt from the far right for working with Democrats to keep the government funded and faces another pair of shutdown deadlines in mid-January and early February.”

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“When the House returns in January,” The Washington Post adds, “Republicans can lose only two votes from their ranks to pass any legislation at a time when the chamber faces major decisions on government spending and foreign aid. That dynamic could force Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.), who assumed the post after a tumultuous three weeks following McCarthy’s ouster, to work with Democrats to avert a partial government shutdown as soon as mid-January.”

U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH) has announced he will retire and exit Congress early next year.

But possibly even before that, Speaker Johnson’s tiny majority could at some point become an opening for Democrats, according to a top political scientist and scholar, Dr. Norman Ornstein.

“Democrats need to be prepared to act swiftly and decisively if the numbers drop below 218– even if only for a day. Quick motion to vacate, [Hakeem] Jeffries as Speaker, immediate agenda,” writes Dr. Ornstein, a senior fellow emeritus at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), “where he has been studying politics, elections, and the US Congress for more than four decades.”

Ornstein offers more opportunities should Democrats be able to take the majority back soon.

READ MORE: Jim Comer Decimated by NBC Reporter in ‘Under Two Minutes’

“Reconciliation bill to secure robust spending, eliminate debt limit permanently, taxes on rich to pay for permanent child tax credit.”

He adds, the number of Republican members “would need to get down to 213. But any set of problems– a Covid outbreak, for example– could bring those numbers down, if only for a day or two. Have a plan ready! Hardball? You bet.”

David Rothkopf, the noted foreign policy, national security and political affairs analyst and commentator, responding to Ornstein’s remarks appeared to urge Republicans to join with Democrats to elect a Democratic Speaker, or even to switch parties:

“This. C’mon you GOPers from purple districts. Trump will have you purged and sent to Siberia. We just need 2 of you. You can be unloved by the GOP or heroes to the rest of America! Make your move now.”

Of course, special elections will be held to replace both Santos (scheduled for February 13, 2024) and McCarthy (likely summer, according to The Post), and at some point Johnson.

But with the extremely large number of members of Congress who have exited or will be, as Ornstein says, Democrats need to be ready.

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OPINION

How Mike Johnson Spent the Day Protecting Mike Johnson

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Republican Speaker of the House Mike Johnson made two major statements Wednesday at a press conference on his Biden impeachment inquiry, both of which serve to protect not the rule of law, the public’s faith in the credibility of Congress, or American democracy, but Mike Johnson.

Johnson, elected Speaker by every House Republican just five weeks ago, was widely described as a “back-bencher,” (a British term Americans have co-opted to refer to a low-profile or lower-level member of Congress,) yet he was anything but. While not well-known by the American people, Johnson had made his mark during the 2020 election, leading The New York Times recently to call him “a key architect of his party’s objections to certifying President Biden’s victory.”

“Mr. Johnson played a leading role in recruiting House Republicans to sign a legal brief supporting a lawsuit seeking to overturn the results” of the 2020 presidential election, The Times reported. “In December 2020, Mr. Johnson collected signatures for a legal brief in support of a Texas lawsuit, rooted in baseless claims of widespread election irregularities, that tried to throw out the results in four battleground states won by Joseph R. Biden Jr.”

In an opinion piece last month, The New York Times’ Jamelle Bouie declared, “Mike Johnson Is a Right-Wing Fever Dream Come to Life.”

In addition to Johnson’s far-right wing views on religion and social issues, Bouie pointed to the Speaker’s “tireless advocacy on behalf of Donald Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election.”

He noted: “Johnson wrote one of the briefs purporting to give a legal justification for throwing out the voting results in several swing states. He advanced the conspiracy theory that Venezuela was somehow involved with the nation’s voting machines. On Jan. 6, 2021, he urged his Republican colleagues to block certification of the election on the grounds that state changes to voting in the face of the pandemic were illegitimate and unconstitutional. When questioned, during his first news conference as speaker, whether he stood by his effort to overturn the 2020 election, he ignored the question, and his fellow Republicans shouted down the reporter who asked it.”

READ MORE: Mike Johnson Once Agreed to Speak at ‘Kill the Gays’ Pastor’s Conference – Until an NCRM Report

Johnson “is, in short, an election-denying extremist who believes that his allies have the right to nullify election results so that they can impose their vision of government and society on an unwilling public.”

On Wednesday, Speaker Johnson falsely described both impeachments of Donald Trump as “meritless.”

It was an important statement for him to make, for Mike Johnson.

“I’m a lawyer. I’m a constitutional law attorney,” Speaker Johnson told reporters Wednesday, a statement he frequently uses to remind people of his status. “I served on President Trump’s impeachment defense team twice. And we lamented openly, we decried how the Democrats politicized that process, they were brazenly political, and how they brought those meritless impeachment charges against the president.”

Donald Trump was impeached the first time for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress after “Trump froze military assistance for Ukraine,” NPR reported in early 2020, “at the same time he sought investigations that he thought might help him in the 2020 campaign.”

The second time Trump was impeached, in January 0f 2021, was for “incitement of insurrection.” Speaker Johnson calling that meritless is in direct contradiction of a Colorado judge’s recent ruling that Trump did, in fact, “engage in insurrection.”

“This, what you’re seeing here, is exactly the opposite,” Johnson continued on Wednesday, referring to his committee chairmen’s impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden. It is an inquiry that Republicans have been forced to admit, even while on Fox News, they have no actual proof of any impeachable offense.

“We are the rule of law team,” Johnson continued. “The Republican Party stands for the rule of law. And the people in charge of this are doing this thoroughly, carefully. methodically. They’re investigating and gathering all the facts and to do this appropriately and to do it in a manner that upholds our constitutional responsibility. requires time, it requires a sound process. You don’t rush something like this. You can’t.”

It was critical for Johnson to mischaracterize and demean Democrats’ impeachments of Donald Trump, especially Trump’s second impeachment over his “incitement of insurrection.”

Remember, as The Times noted, Johnson was a “key architect” of Trump’s efforts to overturn the election. The insurrection was part of that effort.

READ MORE: Speaker Mike Johnson to Be Keynote Speaker at Hardline Christian Nationalist Lawmakers’ Gala

Johnson also “voted against establishing a national commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection,” Politico reported, calling him “one of Trump’s fiercest defenders in his impeachment hearings,”

Two weeks ago NCRM noted the stakes for Johnson “are simple: his three-vote majority is already razor-thin. Speaker Kevin McCarthy made clear Santos would be allowed to stay as long as possible. Will Johnson direct his leadership team to actively whip to expel Santos, knowing his majority will slip even further?”

Johnson answered that question on Wednesday. Despite having just called his House Republican caucus “the rule of law team,”  Johnson effectively declared he opposes Republican efforts to expel U.S. Rep. George Santos (R-NY), who is facing 23 federal felony charges, and a damning Ethics Committee report.

Johnson’s tiny majority would become even smaller, should the House expel the embattled New York GOP lawmaker. And early next year it could shrink even more, given the announced upcoming resignation and exit of U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH), not to mention the other “House Republicans who may head for the exits.”

Dana Houle, a former chief of staff for a Democratic Congressman noted, “Ohio law is murky, but it’s possible [Bill Johnson’s] (overwhelmingly Republican) seat will remain open until November. It’s a reason why Santos won’t be expelled; if Santos’ & Johnson’s seats are vacant the GOP will have only a two seat majority.”

And that’s likely another reason why Speaker Johnson on Wednesday declared, “we’re going to allow people to vote their conscience” on the Santos expulsion vote, expected Thursday. “We’ve not whipped the vote and you wouldn’t I trust that people will make their decisions thoughtfully and in good faith. I personally have real reservations about doing this. I’m, I’m concerned about a precedent that may be set for that.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

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