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OPINION

‘That Was a Lie’: Another Important Fact in the Anti-LGBTQ Supreme Court Wedding Website Case Was Also False

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Exactly one day before the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its 6-3 decision in what has been called an “entirely hypothetical make-believe” case pitting conservative Christian beliefs masked as First Amendment speech against the rights of LGBTQ people to exist equally in the marketplaces of both commerce and ideas, a bombshell report revealed one critical fact in the case turned out to be false.

Apparently, so is a second one.

That first false “fact” – a claim in court documents that a San Francisco man, a graphic designer, years ago had reached out to the plaintiff, a Colorado Christian woman, to ask her to design among other items a wedding website for him and his soon-to-be husband, was almost certainly a lie. The man was and is married, to a woman, when the alleged inquiry came in, and had never even heard of the Christian designer, much less crossed state lines and his own Rolodex and personal skill set to ask her to create a wedding website she allegedly had never before even advertised, much less constructed.

The bombshell news on June 29 came via a report by Melissa Gira Grant at The New Republic.

And now, Melissa Gira Grant has more news – more proof of a possible fraudulent claim before the U.S. Supreme Court, not to mention all the lower courts that sided with the State of Colorado, and not the Christian designer, Lorie Smith (photo), who allegedly had one request for a same-sex wedding website while allegedly having never created any wedding website at all.

“So,” Grant said on social media Tuesday afternoon, “the Colorado website designer in the fake same-sex wedding website case, 303 Creative, it turns out, had made a wedding website, before filing her legal challenge.”

READ MORE: GOP Congressman Admits ‘Most of What We Do Is Bad’ as McCarthy’s Republicans Push for Federal Government Shutdown

Over at The New Republic, the subhead reads: “An archive shows that the plaintiff in the Supreme Court case did once design a wedding website, contrary to what her lawyers presented during her legal challenge.”

Boom.

“The destination wedding website looks uncontroversial enough. The thumbnail preview of the site shows the happy couple’s names in teal and purple type, a mostly out-of-focus photo of a wedding dress trailing on a sandy beach and a couple’s bare feet, and a date and a location in Mexico,” Grant writes.

“In 2015, a web designer named Lorie Smith featured the wedding website in her portfolio of recent work—you can still access an archived copy of Smith’s site on the Wayback Machine. But you won’t find the wedding website in Smith’s live online portfolio anymore. The page detailing her role in the wedding website’s creation was removed some time before she filed a legal challenge—one that claimed she was unable to enter the wedding website business because Colorado’s anti-discrimination law would compel her to create same-sex wedding websites. The wedding website Smith made before she filed her case—and highlighted in a portfolio on her own site—is being reported for the first time in The New Republic.”

Smith’s legal team, the right-wing Christian nationalist Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which appears on the Southern Poverty Law Center‘s list of anti-LGBTQ hate groups, insists The New Republic’s reporting is simply a “media smear.”

READ MORE: ‘Ghouls’: Fox News Blasted for Declaring Jews ‘Survived’ the Holocaust by Being ‘Useful’

But facts are facts.

The U.S. Supreme Court took a case with what are now two “incorrect” pieces of information, and made a decision that, as the ADF suggests on its website, affects every person in the United States. Not only did the Supreme Court make a landmark decision on, at best, a faulty case, one that some legal experts have made clear it should never have even agreed to review, so did every lower court that ruled against Smith.

Responding to The New Republic’s latest bombshell report, Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern writes, “Lorie Smith and her lawyers at Alliance Defending Freedom repeatedly told the Supreme Court that she had never, ever made a wedding website, because she was afraid a same-sex couple might then request her services. That was a lie.”

“The wedding website that Lorie Smith DID make was scrubbed from the internet, though some of it can still be seen via the Wayback Machine,” he adds, pointing to TNR’s reporting.

Alex Aronson former Chief Counsel for U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Senate Judiciary Committee, writes: “Evidence continues to mount that the anti-LGBTQ extremist group Alliance Defending Freedom committed a fraud on the Supreme Court in its cooked-up 303 Creative case.”

Drexel University Professor of Law David S. Cohen states simply, “Apparently nothing about this case was true.”

NBC News senior reporter Ben Collins sums it all up: “This case continues to absolutely reek and nothing is being done about it.”

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OPINION

Marjorie Taylor Greene, ‘Putin’s Envoy’? Democrat’s Bills Mock Republican’s Actions

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For years U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) has been called “Pro-Putin.” As far back as 2021, her first year as a member of Congress, the question had been raised on social media: “Is Marjorie Taylor Greene a Russian asset?

In 2022 The Annenberg Public Policy Center’s FactCheck.org reported: “Marjorie Taylor Greene Parrots Russian Talking Point on Ukraine.”

Back then, as the article highlighted, Greene had said, “there is no doubt that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s actions in Ukraine are despicable and evil.”

Now, she promotes a far more favorable view of President Vladimir Putin and his illegal war against Ukraine, a sovereign nation which the Russian autocrat wants to incorporate – at least partly – into Russia.

Just last week Greene spread demonstrably false pro-Russia talking points about a “war on Christianity” while defending and promoting President Vladimir Putin.

READ MORE: ‘Afraid and Intimidated’: Trump Trial Juror Targeted by Fox News Dismissed

“This is a war on Christianity,” Greene told far-right propagandist Steve Bannon. “The Ukrainian government is attacking Christians, the Ukrainian government is executing priests. Russia is not doing that.”

That’s just plain false, as NCRM reported.

Largely in response to her strong opposition to the U.S. supporting Ukraine, and her spreading Russian disinformation and flat-out pro-Putin falsehoods, Greene’s fondness for Putin and Russia has been making headlines.

“Republicans Who Like Putin,” was the headline last month at The New York Times, which observed: “A few Republicans have gone so far as [to] speak about Ukraine and its president, Volodymyr Zelensky, in ways that mimic Russian propaganda. Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene has accused Ukraine of having ‘a Nazi army,’ echoing language Putin used to justify the invasion.”

“The Putin Republicans Have the Upper Hand” warned Washington Monthly‘s David Atkins on Wednesday, reporting on “conservative extremists led by Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene.”

“They admire the strongman as a Christian nationalist leader, and won’t support Ukraine. The global consequences of their besotted love affair with the Russian strongman could be cataclysmic.”

“Russia Is Buying Politicians in Europe. Is It Happening Here Too?” The New Republic‘s Alex Finley wrote last week. The photo at the top of the page? Marjorie Taylor Greene.

READ MORE: ‘Used by the Russians’: Moskowitz Mocks Comer’s Biden Impeachment Failure

Finley pointed to Greene’s interview with Bannon, “about Ukraine’s persecution of Christians, which is a Kremlin talking point aimed at boosting the pro-Moscow wing of Ukraine’s Orthodox Church. The U.S. should be spending money on the border with Mexico, not on Ukraine aid? That’s a Kremlin talking point. Russia invaded Ukraine to defend itself against an expanding NATO? That’s a Kremlin talking point. Call for a cease-fire, and give Russia Crimea and eastern Ukraine? That’s a Kremlin talking point.”

Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post last week ran this headline: “Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says she ‘seriously hates’ people who support sending more aid to Ukraine: ‘Most repulsive, disgusting thing happening’.”

Then there is Greene’s obsession with Nazis. Specifically, equating Ukrainians with Nazis, which she did several times over the past week, including on Wednesday. That earned her the condemnation and wrath of U.S. Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-FL), who demanded: “Stop bringing up Nazis and Hitler.”

Wednesday night, Congressman Moskowitz, known for his use of humor and sarcasm to make his points, declared: “Just submitted an amendment to Bill drafting appointing MTG [Marjorie Taylor Greene] as Putin’s Special Envoy to the United States Congress.”

Moskowitz’s amendment was in response to Congresswoman Greene’s amendments requiring members to “conscript in the Ukrainian military” if they vote for the Ukraine military funding bill, as Juliegrace Brufke reported.

READ MORE: ‘Big Journalism Fail’: Mainstream Media Blasted Over Coverage of Historic Trump Trial

The Florida Democrat wasn’t joking, as Axios’ Andrew Solender pointed out Thursday morning.

Moskowitz did not stop there.

He drafted legislation on Thursday to name the Capitol Hill offices occupied by Congresswoman Greene after the British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, infamous for promoting appeasement in dealing with Adolf Hitler.

Chamberlain also signed the Munich Agreement, which allowed Hitler to annex part of Czechoslovakia.

See the social media posts above or at this link.

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OPINION

‘Stop Bringing Up Nazis and Hitler’: Marjorie Taylor Greene Smacked Down by Democrats

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U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene was strongly criticized by two Democratic Congressmen after the Georgia Republican’s remarks about “Ukrainian Nazis” and her attempts to paint Ukrainians as Nazis.

“Stop bringing up Nazis and Hitler,” U.S. Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-FL) urged, after Greene’s remarks suggesting there is a large Nazi problem in Ukraine, during a House Oversight Committee hearing. “The only people who know about Nazis and Hitler are the 10 million people and their families who lost their loved ones, generations of people who were wiped out. It is enough of this disgusting behavior, using Nazis as propaganda. You want to talk about Nazis, get yourself over to the Holocaust Museum. You go see what Nazis did. It’s despicable that we use that and we allow it and we sit here like somehow it’s regular.”

Moskowitz began by telling the Committee his “grandparents escaped the Holocaust.”

“So my grandmother was part of the Kindertransport out of Germany. Her parents were killed in Auschwitz. My grandfather, her husband escaped Poland, from the pogroms,” he continued.

READ MORE: ‘Used by the Russians’: Moskowitz Mocks Comer’s Biden Impeachment Failure

“There are no concentration camps in Ukraine. They’re not taking babies and shooting them in the air ’cause they’re Jewish. There’s no gas chambers. There’s no ovens. They’re not railing people in, they’re not ripping gold out of people’s mouth. They’re not taking stuff out of their home. They’re not trying to erase a people. They’re Ukrainians.”

Greene’s remarks over the weekend had caused anger.

“It’s antisemitic to make Israeli aid contingent on funding Ukrainian Nazis,” Congresswoman Greene declared Sunday from her official government social media account, as legislation to support Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan moved to the top of Speaker Mike Johnson’s priority list in the wake of Iran’s attack on Israel. Her implication appeared to be Ukrainians are Nazis – a Putin talking point.

Greene on Wednesday spent several minutes again implying there are many Nazis in Ukraine, as she was refuted by a top scholar, Yale professor of history Timothy Snyder. Dr. Snyder is the author of a dozen books, including two on Nazis and the Holocaust, and is an expert on the Holocaust, Central and Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union, and serves on the Council on Foreign Relations.

Responding to Greene’s remarks, Snyder told the lawmakers, “no far-right party has ever crossed three percent” in a Ukrainian election.

READ MORE: ‘Scared to Death’: GOP Ex-Congressman Brings Hammer Down on ‘Weak’ Trump

Greene was also criticized by U.S. Rep. Maxwell Frost (D-FL), who called her out for her “hypocrisy” and reminded her that in 2022 she “spoke at event led by white supremacists.”

That event was hosted by white supremacist Nick Fuentes:

Watch the videos above or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Big Journalism Fail’: Mainstream Media Blasted Over Coverage of Historic Trump Trial

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OPINION

‘Big Journalism Fail’: Mainstream Media Blasted Over Coverage of Historic Trump Trial

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The media’s ability to shape public opinion is well-documented, and by the end of the second day of the first criminal trial in history of a former U.S. president critics are slamming the content, framing, and focus of mainstream media organizations. The biggest concerns: refusing to cover the former president’s apparent inability to stay awake in court, too much identifying information of potential and chosen jurors, and even subtle descriptions that can be used to feed into false perceptions the trial is “unfair” or, as the ex-president likes to say, a “scam.”

Overnight, CNN’s Oliver Darcy’s “Reliable Sources” newsletter blasted mainstream media outlets that “strangely show little interest in reporting on Donald Trump’s courtroom naps.”

“Imagine, for a moment, if President Joe Biden were to be caught openly sleeping at an important hearing,” Darcy posits. Trump was caught “nodding” off repeatedly several times over the first two days of trial (there is no trial Wednesdays). “Then imagine it were to occur at another important hearing the next day. Not only would right-wing media outlets like Fox News run wild with coverage questioning his fitness for office, mainstream news organizations would no doubt also treat the snooze fest as a serious news story. But, for some unknown reason, Donald Trump falling asleep at his historic criminal trial in New York (as he apparently did, again, on Tuesday) has been met with a rather muted response.”

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Noting, “It’s important,” Darcy asks, “why has much of the press fallen asleep at the wheel?” and serves up some examples – or lack thereof.

“ABC News and NBC News didn’t even bother mentioning it on their evening newscasts and many major outlets haven’t even filed straight stories on it. To be frank, if not for The NYT’s Maggie Haberman reporting on the matter Tuesday, it’s unclear whether the public — which is relying on news organizations to be its eyes and ears in the courtroom, given cameras are barred — would know about it.”

“It’s all the more bizarre given that Trump has made attacking ‘sleepy Joe’ a central tenet of his campaign, framing the president as lacking the stamina to serve in the nation’s highest office. Which is to say, the fact that Trump is the one apparently unable to stay awake in his own criminal trial isn’t a trivial story.”

Jennifer Schulze, a media critic who was a Chicago Sun-Times executive producer, WGN news director, and adjunct college professor of journalism, pointing to Darcy’s criticism, calls it “a big journalism fail.”

READ MORE: ‘Scared to Death’: GOP Ex-Congressman Brings Hammer Down on ‘Weak’ Trump

The ex-president is facing 34 felony counts for falsification of business records when he paid hush money to an adult film actress then allegedly tried to cover it up, which some say is election interference.

New York State Supreme Court Judge Juan Merchan is overseeing the Trump trial, and ordered the identities of all jurors and prospective jurors to remain anonymous. Trump has a proven track record of alleged attempts to intimidate witnesses, judges, prosecutors, and others involved in his trials.

Some are concerned the media went too far in posting and publishing some possibly identifying information internet sleuths could use to piece together their names.

“There is seriously far, far too much identifying information about prospective jurors, several of whom are now empaneled, coming out in the press,” warned attorney and author Luppe B. Luppen.

Here’s how Fox News host Jesse Watters used that information to target one empaneled juror, while attempting to discredit the trial.

Fox News’ Sean Hannity went after “Juror Number One,” who is the foreperson.

It is not just Fox News targeting jurors.

Even The New York Times’ coverage of jurors drew the ire of critics.

READ MORE: ‘Your Client Is a Criminal Defendant’: Judge Denies Trump Request to Skip Trial for SCOTUS

Here’s how The Times’ Jonah Bromwich reported on the jury foreperson:

“The foreperson who was just selected — that’s juror one, the de facto leader of the group who will likely help steer deliberations — works in sales and enjoys the outdoors. He is originally from Ireland, but will help decide the former American president’s fate.”

University of Wisconsin—Madison professor of political science, who has a Ph.D. in Government, criticized the Times’ reporting.

“100% certain if the foreperson were native born, they would not have written this sentence and used the formulation of ‘former president’ subtly implying the foreperson from Ireland is somehow not a real American.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

 

 

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