Connect with us

News

‘Slitting Throats’ and ‘Stone-Cold Dead’: DeSantis Ramps Up Violent Rhetoric

Published

on

Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, on the presidential campaign trail in New Hampshire in late July pledged to supporters he would root out the deep state from the federal government: “we are going to start slitting throats on Day One.”

Responding to DeSantis’ throat-slitting remarks, Professor of Political Science & Public Affairs Mark Copelovitch on August 4 observed, “In an actual serious country, using language like this in re: government employees would result in the man’s immediate resignation as governor & the end of national media covering him as a viable presidential candidate.”

Political historian Brian Rosenwald, also that day, commented on DeSantis’ rhetoric: “Put bluntly: this is the type of language that gets people killed. It reflects DeSantis’s unfitness, and every paper in America should have a headline tomorrow, ‘DeSantis’ violent rhetoric risks violence.'”

It wasn’t the first time DeSantis had used that term but it did make headlines. And it did elicit  letters from concerned federal government union heads.

“Governor DeSantis’ threat to ‘start slitting throats’ of federal employees is dangerous, disgusting, disgraceful, and disqualifying,” said American Federation of Government Employees National President Everett Kelley. “Federal employees – over a third of whom are veterans now wearing their second uniform in service to their country – have dedicated their lives to serving their fellow Americans.”

RELATED: DeSantis Using Same White Nationalist Rhetoric as El Paso Mass Shooter Who Slaughtered 23 in Anti-Hispanic Hate Crime

“No federal employee should face death threats from anyone, least of all from someone seeking to lead the U.S. government. Governor DeSantis must retract his irresponsible statement,” Kelley demanded.

Also in July, the Florida governor told the right wing website Real America’s Voice that he would not promote a current military officer to become Secretary of Defense – not because he believes in a civilian-run military, but because he wants his Defense Secretary to “slit some throats.”

“You know, they may have to slit some throats, and it’s a lot harder to do that if these are people that you’ve trained with in the past or that, you know, so we’re going to have somebody out there, you know, be very firm, very strong, but they are going to make sure that we have the best people in the best positions and there’s not going to be necessarily prior relationships that would cloud that judgment,” DeSantis said, according to Florida Politics.

These were not “one-off” gaffes. Ron DeSantis has a history of using violent rhetoric.

The Tampa Bay Times on Friday noted, “Violent imagery is a key part of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ verbal arsenal on the campaign trail.”

“DeSantis has used other violent rhetoric on the campaign trail, making headlines earlier this summer with his calls for deadly force against some people trying to break through wall at the U.S.-Mexico border while carrying drugs,” The Washington Post reported in early August.

“We are going to be the first president that’s going to be willing to lean against the Mexican drug cartels,” DeSantis had also said while in New Hampshire. “If they’re trying to bring fentanyl into our communities that’s going to be the last thing they do because at the border they’re going to be shot stone-cold dead.”

DeSantis made almost the exact same remark on Friday:

Law professor and political scientist Anthony Michael Kreis, commenting on DeSantis’ “stone old dead” remark, stated: “Extra-judicial executions are just murder by another name.”

The Washington Post‘s Greg Sargent in July pointed to DeSantis’ anti-immigrant rhetoric.

“Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis released a plan for the southern border this week that uses the word ‘invasion’ at least five times. He later took this rhetoric to hallucinogenic extremes, declaring on Fox News that anyone with drugs who ‘is cutting through a border wall’ should end up ‘stone-cold dead,’” Sargent wrote. “The specter of a migrant ‘invasion,’ which carries white nationalist overtones, has been a mainstay of Donald Trump’s political vocabulary ever since he ran for president in 2016. But the fact that DeSantis and Trump — the leaders in polls for the Republican nomination — are both all in on this ugly notion shows how profoundly it is capturing the GOP.”

READ MORE: ‘Act of Open Hostility’: Trump Plans to Team Up With Tucker Carlson Instead of Attending GOP Debate

One year ago almost to the day, speaking at a rally in Orlando, DeSantis attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci, who for two administrations had been the federal government’s face of the response to COVID-19. the Florida governor said he wanted someone to “chuck” Fauci “across the Potomac.”

Fauci, now retired, was at the time an 81-year old immunologist and the chief medical advisor to the president, who began in public service in 1968 when he joined the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

“I’m just sick of seeing him,” DeSantis said at a Florida GOP rally, as WFLA reported. “I know he says he’s going to retire. Someone needs to grab that little elf and chuck him across the Potomac.”

Back in June journalist Thomas Kennedy pointed to a photo from a DeSantis rally with an anti-immigration poster that read, “Stop the invasion.”

“Same rhetoric employed by the El Paso shooter and other violent white supremacists,” he noted. “They are inciting violence and they know what they are doing.”

MSNBC’s Medhi Hasan in June discussed DeSantis’ promise to “destroy leftism,” which he says is “dangerous.”

“Everyone knows if I’m the nominee, I will beat Biden and I will serve two terms. I will be able to destroy leftism in this country and leave woke ideology on the dust bin of history,” DeSantis pledged.

Watch the videos above or at this link.

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

News

Trump’s Scheme for Absolute Immunity From State Prosecutions Forever: Report

Published

on

Having successfully obtained delays in his federal trials and his state trial in Georgia, possibly until after the November election, Donald Trump is now seeking an “insurance policy” to protect him from any future state prosecutions if he again becomes president.

The indicted ex-president who turns 78 next month “seems convinced that if he wins another four years in the White House, state prosecutors will still be waiting for him on the other side of his term — ready to put him on trial, or even in prison, just as they are now,” Rolling Stone reports.

“To avoid such risks, the former and perhaps future president of the United States wants Congress to create a very specific insurance policy that would help keep him out of prison forever, two sources familiar with the matter tell Rolling Stone. Trump vaguely alluded to this idea last week outside his New York criminal hush money trial, when he said he has urged Republican lawmakers to pass ‘laws to stop things like this.'”

Trump “has pressured” Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill to do so, describing it as imperative that he signs such a bill into law, if he again ascends to the Oval Office.”

READ MORE: Pence Defense of Alito’s Insurrectionist Flag Highlights Its Ties to Violent Government Overthrow

Rolling Stone also notes, “Trump appears fixated on the idea of passing a law to give former American presidents the option of moving state or local prosecutions into a federal court instead, the two sources add.”

Trump “has hinted at a legislative push to limit his exposure to such criminal charges. In an improvised press conference outside the Manhattan courthouse on Tuesday, Trump said he’s been telling the Republican lawmakers who want to attend his trial and show solidarity to focus on legislation instead.”

“We have a lot of ’em. They want to come. I say, ‘Just stay back and pass lots of laws to stop things like this.’”

In 1973, while still President but under the cloud of the Watergate scandal, Richard Nixon said, “People have got to know whether or not their President is a crook.”

If Trump is elected in November, he can have his Attorney General drop any federal prosecutions he is currently facing. That may call into question, for some legal experts, the actions of the far-right justices on the U.S. Supreme Court who have delayed ruling on his immunity claim, and U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon.

On May 7, Judge Cannon indefinitely suspended the Espionage Act case, also known as the classified documents case, against Donald Trump.

READ MORE: ‘You Just Don’t Do It’: Federal Judge Denounces Alito’s Flags as ‘Stop the Steal’ Stickers

Foreign policy, national security, and political affairs analyst and commentator David Rothkopf this week blasted the judge:

“Judge Cannon is not, as commentators and cartoonists would have it, just working on behalf of Trump. She is actively working on behalf of the enemies of the US who have and would benefit from the national security breaches she is effectively defending and making more likely.”

U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) earlier this month declared, “The courts are deliberately delaying justice — and effectively denying it.”

This coming week Americans may get a verdict in the New York criminal case against the ex-president. If it comes, it may be “guilty” or “not guilty,” but it could also be a hung jury, forcing another trial which also would not likely come before the election.

If Trump is elected in November, and can get his “insurance policy” legislation passed, he could possibly avoid all criminal trials for the rest of his life.

Continue Reading

News

‘Will You Accept the Results?’: Cruz’s Election Denialism Shut Down in ‘Brutal’ Interview

Published

on

U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) promoted Donald Trump’s false election denialism and was challenged by a CNN anchor in an interview being praised by several media watchers.

During the Wednesday interview Cruz suggested to host Kaitlan Collins that Democrats or Hillary Clinton criticizing election results was equivalent to Donald Trump’s “Big Lie” campaign, which included over 60 legal challenges and countless false allegations of massive fraud. He also insisted there was a “peaceful transfer of power” after the 2020 presidential election despite the violent and deadly January 6 insurrection for which more than 1200 people have been criminally charged and for which the ex-president is facing several indictments. In the end, Collins appeared to cut the interview short.

“Will you certify the election results?” in the November election, Collins asked the Texas Republican on Wednesday, noting he was the first in the Senate to say he would not certify the 2020 election results. “Do you plan to object or will you accept the results regardless of who wins the election?”

“So Kaitlan,” Cruz replied, “I gotta say, I think that’s actually a ridiculous question.”

“It’s a yes or no question,” Collins replied.

“No it’s not that let me explain why it’s a ridiculous question,” Cruz alleged combatively. “It’s not a question – have you ever asked Democrat that?”

READ MORE: ‘Investigate Now’: As Alito Scandal Grows Pressure Mounts on ‘MIA’ and ‘AWOL’ Judiciary Chair

“Of course,” Collins replied.

“What Democrat?” Cruz demanded to know.

After a short back-and-forth, Collins said, “I know, I know, I’ve been on this road many, many times, but no Democrat – you can not compare the two situations. We have talked about that, we’ve seen the audio of that when they protested,” Collins said,  appearing to refer to Hillary Clinton having called the 2016 presidential election “stolen,” which she did three years after the election, in 2019.

“Have you ever had a sitting president who refused to facilitate the peaceful transition of power refused to acknowledge that his successor won the presidency?” Collins asked Cruz.

“So, A, we did have a peaceful transfer of power. I was there on January 20. I was there on the swearing in,” Cruz insisted, ignoring the January 6 insurrection.

“Barely,” Collins replied..

Cruz continued to refer to individual “objections” Democrats have made about results of elections – not formal, legal objections (except Al Gore in 2000) but comments or remarks, or individual objections to one state elections – not organized campaigns.

So you’re asking, ‘Will you promise no matter what to agree an election is illegitimate regardless of what happens?’ and that would be an absurd thing to claim,” Cruz said.

Again, after some back-and forth, Collins said, “This isn’t a game. There was no widespread voter fraud.”

“It is a game,” Cruz responded. “You only ask Republicans that.”

It November of 2022, the right-wing Cato Institute published an opinion piece titled, “Yes, Democrats Have Called Some Elections Illegitimate. GOP Election Denialism Is Far Worse,” and added: “It’s not even close.”

READ MORE: ‘Contemptuous’: Justice Alito’s Actions ‘Close to Treason’ Suggests Constitutional Scholar

Collins later pointed out that it is only Republicans who have “tried to block the transition of power. You have to acknowledge that.”

“So my question for you again: free and fair election. Will you accept the results regardless of who wins?” Collins again asked.

“Look, if the Democrats win, I will accept the result, but I’m not going to ignore fraud regardless of what happens.”

“Was there fraud in 202o?” Collins pressed.

“Of course there was fraud,” Cruz insisted.

“No, that wasn’t and you still objected,” Collins pointed out.

“Oh, you know, for a fact there was zero voter fraud really? What’s your basis for that? Show me your evidence,” Cruz demanded, inserting “zero” when Collins meant fraud “that would have changed the outcome,” as she noted later.

Commenting on the interview, writer Charlotte Clymer, a former press secretary for the Human Rights Campaign said, “This is brilliant.”

“I seriously cannot remember the last time any journalist on cable news confronted the bad faith of a MAGA politician this insistently,” Clymer remarked. “For five minutes (!), Kaitlin Collins pressed Ted Cruz and demanded a good faith answer.”

Democratic strategist and former DNC official Adam Parkhomenko commented, “this is just brutal.” He added Cruz was “being humiliated.”

Calling it, “Well done,” journalist Ahmed Baba wrote: “Kaitlan Collins interjecting with fact-checks multiple times and ending the interview after Ted Cruz refused to engage in the facts and continued to spread his propaganda.”

Watch below or at this link.

READ MORE: Trump Adviser Scanned and Saved Contents of Box That Had Classified Docs: Report

 

Continue Reading

News

‘Investigate Now’: As Alito Scandal Grows Pressure Mounts on ‘MIA’ and ‘AWOL’ Judiciary Chair

Published

on

Revelations over the past week that U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito flew flags associated with the January 6 insurrection and the far-right Christian nationalist movement at not one but two of his homes have drawn tremendous outrage, and heightened demands that Senate Judiciary Chairman Dick Durbin (D-IL) hold hearings on the jurist, and pass legislation to reform the Court.

Chairman Durbin, first elected to Congress in 1982, has focused his attention on ensuring President Joe Biden’s judicial nominees are confirmed. Wednesday morning he celebrated confirming 200 judges nominated by President Biden to the federal bench.

But critics, including legal experts, say the Chairman has done little to reform the Supreme Court or hold the judicial branch to account.

READ MORE: Trump Adviser Scanned and Saved Contents of Box That Had Classified Docs: Report

Durbin did not hold any hearings over Justice Clarence Thomas’s numerous alleged ethical violations. Some legal experts say he has not only violated the people’s trust and judicial ethics rules, but federal law.

And now, critics say, Chairman Durbin is not responding sufficiently to the Justice Alito scandal.

The Chairman did release a statement on Wednesday after the New York Times bombshell of a second Alito flag, calling for the Justice to “recuse himself immediately from cases related to the 2020 election and the January 6th insurrection.”

Critics say that’s not enough, recusal is also not enough, and a statement from Durbin doesn’t rise to the level of Alito’s actions.

Professor of law, election law expert, and Director, Safeguarding Democracy Project Rick Hasen Wednesday did not hold back.

“WTF Justice Alito?” he wrote. “I was uncertain if revelation of first flag merited J Alito’s recusal in the first case, but I now believe he must recuse in the Trump immunity and related cases. His impartiality could be reasonably questioned;no blaming it on spouse.”

Historian and professor Heather Cox Richardson, responding to Hasen, wrote: “Recuse? He needs to resign.”

Justice Alito’s flags indicate support for the January 6, 2021 insurrection, suggests University Professor Emeritus at Harvard University, Laurence Tribe, a professor of law and top constitutional scholar who wrote a major textbook on the U.S. Constitution.

In an interview Wednesday he also suggested Justice Alito’s actions come close to treason.

READ MORE: ‘Going for the Jugular’: Legal Scholar Warns ‘Trumpers’ Want to End Major Civil Right

Professor Tribe alleged Justice Alito may have committed impeachable offenses, including “giving aid and comfort to an insurrection against the Constitution of the United States, which is close to treason,” he said in his Wednesday interview on the MeidasTouch Network. He also called for a “serious investigation” by the U.S. Senate into Alito, who “has been contemptuous for quite a while.”

But Tribe also aimed his criticism at the Judiciary Chairman.

“This isn’t just about the insurrection-abetting Sam Alito, it’s about the AWOL Senator Durbin. He has no excuse for not holding hearings about Alito now.”

On Tuesday, even before the second Alito flag was discovered, Tribe demanded action.

I’m sorry, Senator Durbin, you’re MIA on this. You have a solemn responsibility to conduct oversight here. This is deadly serious! Key Senate Democrat doesn’t plan to probe Justice Alito over upside-down flag. Excuse me, why the heck not??”

Earlier, on Saturday, Professor Tribe had already been pushing for Durbin to act.

Talk is cheap. Chairman Dick Durbin needs to do more than call on Alito to recuse himself from the insurrection cases. Durbin needs to step up and use the subpoena power to demand Alito’s appearance and explanation before the Senate Judiciary Committee!”

On Monday, NBC News’ Sahil Kapur had reported, “Durbin has NO plans to hold a hearing on Justice Alito. ‘I don’t think there’s much to be gained with a hearing at this point… He should recuse himself from cases involving Trump and his admin.’ And if Alito won’t? Durbin says no recourse but impeachment—and they aren’t there.”

READ MORE: Trump Adviser Scanned and Saved Contents of Box That Had Classified Docs: Report

Attorney Dan Coffin, who writes about constitutional issues, disagreeing with Durbin’s claim, says there must be an investigation.

“An impeachment hearing should be preceded by an investigative hearing to establish the facts regarding the flag incident, as well as other matters currently known or as developed in an investigative hearing. The public needs to know the facts. Alito likely would refuse to appear, even with a subpoena, and the public needs to know that,” he said. “There should also be an investigative hearing regarding Thomas & his wife.”

Progressive talk show host Thom Hartmann also blasted Durbin.

“Dick Durbin needs to haul Alito and Thomas before the Senate Judiciary Committee to get to the bottom of their collision with Trump’s attempt to overthrow American democracy. Will he find the courage?”

Adam Cohen, Lawyers for Good Government Vice Chair, Board of Directors on Thursday also took aim at Durbin.

“Dick Durbin is the Senate Judiciary Committee Chair,” he began. “He needs to investigate Supreme Court Justices Alito and Thomas-NOW.”

“Chief Justice Roberts must testify about the MAGA takeover of the Court-and what he’ll do to stop it,” Cohen insisted, warning: “Americans are losing their rights … This CANNOT continue.”

See the social media posts above or at this link.

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.