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Tag: kimberly guilfoyle

The Flakiest Falsehoods Told At Republican Convention

Republicans told countless lies over the past four days of the 2020 Republican National Convention, speaking as if the pandemic that's killed more than 180,000 people in the United States is over, suggesting Donald Trump oversaw an economic expansion in the middle of the worst recession the country has faced since the Great Depression, and blaming Democrats for violence on Trump's watch.

A handful of those lies were so false and confusing they are worth singling out and debunking.

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Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons and one novel. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

If You Watch Fox News, You’ve Already Seen The GOP Convention

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

Frequent guests from President Donald Trump's favorite network dominate the slate for the 2020 Republican National Convention. The announced speakers have made at least 3,171 combined appearances on Fox News weekday programs since August 2017, according to Media Matters' internal database. Several of the boldface names previously worked at Fox, gained Trump's attention through interviews on the network, or are heroes of its culture war programming.

Of the 72 RNC speakers announced Sunday, 51 have appeared on Fox's weekday programming since August 2017. Many are network regulars -- 21 have made at least 50 appearances, and 13 have been interviewed more than 100 times. Trump himself has appeared at least 51 times.

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Trump Campaign Is Funneling Money To Don Junior’s Girlfriend

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign includes not only Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump, but also, the women two of Trump’s sons have been romantically involved with. And according to the New York Times, the president’s campaign manager has been funneling money to Kimberly Guilfoyle (Trump Jr.’s girlfriend) and Eric Trump’s wife, Lara Trump.

The payments, the Times reported, were made through Parscale Strategy, a private, San Antonio, Texas-based company owned by the president’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale.

Huffington Post’s Mary Papenfuss notes that the “family benefits” are “linked to a network of politically connected private companies — operating with the support and help of Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner — that have charged roughly $75 million since 2017 to the Trump reelection campaign.”

Guilfoyle is a former Fox News pundit who left that right-wing cable news channel in 2018 and has been dating Trump Jr. for two years. In January, Trump’s campaign announced that Guilfoyle would be leading joint fundraising between Trump’s reelection campaign and the Republican National Committee (RNC).

Long before she dated Trump Jr., Guilfoyle was married to Democrat Gavin Newsom — who was mayor of San Francisco at the time and went on to become governor of California.

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

The Year Fox News Flushed Roger Ailes (And His Scandal) Down The Memory Hole

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

It turns out Chris Christie, Newt Gingrich, and Rudy Giuliani aren’t the only famous Republicans who are emerging as prominent losers in President-elect Donald Trump’s transition sweepstakes. Among those who were also expected to play a potential role in shaping the new Republican administration was Fox News founder Roger Ailes.

Touted in the press as a marketing whiz, it was Ailes who allowed Trump to use Fox as his personal megaphone for much of the last two years and actively coached Trump during his Republican primary run.

With Ailes returning to his roots as a GOP image-maker, he and Trump seemed to represent the same side of a dark coin: paranoid, vindictive, deeply Islamophobic, and big proponents of race-baiting, especially when it comes to President Obama. Indeed, Trump mirrors the often-tasteless brand of divisive rhetoric that Ailes hallmarked at Fox for decades.

Known for whipping up partisan fears and corralling voter suspicions of the other, Ailes is a logical choice to occupy a vaunted position on Team Trump after the election. Yet Ailes seems to have joined the ranks of the disappeared in recent weeks. (The Trump campaign quickly, and publicly, shot down recent media chatter that Ailes might be tapped for a State Department post.)

It’s been an astonishing fall from grace, considering Ailes began the year at the peak of his powers. Watching Trump race out to a big lead in the Republican primary, and guiding Fox News through several flare-ups with the candidate, Ailes seemed poised to ride the Trump wave all year.

And then July 6 happened.

That was the day former Fox & Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson detailed the harassing office culture at Fox when she filed a lawsuit against Ailes, claiming he had once said to her, “I think you and I should have had a sexual relationship a long time ago and then you’d be good and better and I’d be good and better.” Carlson’s lawsuit alleged Ailes sought to “sabotage her career because she refused his sexual advances and complained about severe and pervasive sexual harassment.”

Her startling allegations were many, but they were just the beginning. As Fox’s parent company launched an internal investigation into Ailes’ behavior, more women came forward with their own claims of harassment by Ailes.

Fox’s Megyn Kelly told investigators that Ailes made unwanted sexual advances toward her a decade earlier, according to New York magazine (and he resigned two days after Kelly’s allegations were reported.)

“Current and former employees described instances of harassment and intimidation that went beyond Mr. Ailes and suggested a broader problem in the workplace,” The New York Times soon reported. “The Times spoke with about a dozen women who said they had experienced some form of sexual harassment or intimidation at Fox News or the Fox Business Network, and half a dozen more who said they had witnessed it.”

According to a Washington Post exposé, Ailes made “jokes that he liked having women on their knees,” and women at Fox did not want to be alone with Ailes in closed-door meetings. Also, Ailes allegedly grabbed the buttocks of a young intern in 2002 after she rebuffed his sexual advances.

Then came the chilling report in New York magazine about former Fox News booker Laurie Luhn and her alleged years-long “psychological torture” and harassment by Ailes. Luhn alleged that Ailes “instructed her to recruit young women for him,” demanded she engage in “sadomasochistic sex with another woman while he watched,” and set her up with a no-show job. After she alleged a pattern of harassent by Ailes, Luhn reportedly signed “a $3.15 million settlement agreement with extensive nondisclosure provisions,” which “bars her from going to court against Fox for the rest of her life.”

In all, at least 25 women detailed allegations against Ailes and the cable channel.

Even Fox News’ Howard Kurtz conceded, “This has been a painful and embarrassing period for the network.” Yet at the outset of the scandal, Fox News pretended Carlson was the problem, not Roger Ailes.

Greta Van Susteren suggested Carlson falsely accused her boss of sexual harassment because she was “unhappy that her contract wasn’t renewed.” (Months after Ailes’ departure, she expressed regret for her comments.) Bill O’Reilly compared Carlson’s allegations to a “frivolous lawsuit,” and announced, “I stand behind Roger 100 percent.” Jeanine Pirro called Carlson’s allegations “absurd” and tagged Ailes as a “no-nonsense guy,” adding, “I just loved him.”

And Fox’s Kimberly Guilfoyle claimed she had spoken to other women at Fox and “nobody believed” Carlson’s allegations. She insisted that Ailes “is a man who champions women.”

Trump himself weighed in, initially calling the claims against Ailes “totally unfounded based on what I’ve read,” and stressing that he is “a very, very good person” and “a friend of mine for a long time.”

As for Fox defending Ailes, two months after Carlson’s lawsuit, Fox News’ parent company reached a $20 million settlement with her and issued an apology. That concession made a mockery of the staff-wide victim-blaming that had gone on at Fox on Ailes’ behalf.

Post-Ailes, were effusive, public apologies offered up to women working at Fox? Was there any attempt to make wholesale changes among top managers at Fox? Of course not.

Instead, Fox News simply flushed the Ailes scandal down the memory hole and promoted Ailes’ longtime lieutenant Bill Shine.

That’s the same Bill Shine who reportedly “played an integral role in the cover up” of sexual harassment claims against Ailes. Shine, according to reporter Gabriel Sherman, was involved in “rallying the women to speak out against” Ailes’ accusers. Shine also reportedly played a role in “smearing” Fox News reporter Rudi Bakhtiar, who claimed she was fired after complaining about sexual harassment.

Clearly lessons have not been learned, and apparently being Fox News means never having to say you’re sorry. Even when your founder and archetype spends 2016 exposing the channel as a haven for sexual harassment.

This Week In Crazy: Put The Devil Back Into Hell

666 is not only the number of the Beast — it is also, it seems, the number of weeks this election cycle has been going on. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Monica Cole

Well, I’m glad we have our priorities in order. Monica Cole, director of the American Family Association’s One Million Moms initiative, has her sights set on getting FOX’s new show Lucifer kicked off the air by organizing a boycott of companies that advertise on the network.

The new show, she writes, is “spiritually dangerous” because it “glorifies Satan as a caring, likable person in human flesh.” Cole complains that the show poses questions “meant to make people rethink assumptions about good and evil, including about God and Satan.”

Permit a digression into comic book geekdom for a moment. This TV series is based on the DC Comics’ title Lucifer, written by Mike Carey, but this interpretation of the character originally appeared in The Sandman, the groundbreaking comic penned by prolific scribe Neil Gaiman. Gaiman said he took cues for his Lucifer from John Milton’s Paradise Lost when he fashioned the character. So let’s all stop pretending that literary works using the Satan archetype to examine weighty issues of predestination, free will, and moral character is, like, Barack Obama’s fault, or something remotely new.

Gaiman issued a succinct rebuttal to the OMMs on his Tumblr, when the they got this boycott thing kicking eight months ago:

Ah. It seems like only yesterday (but it was 1991) that the “Concerned Mothers of America” announced that they were boycotting SANDMAN because it contained Lesbian, Gay, Bi and Trans characters. It was Wanda that upset them most: the idea of a Trans Woman in a comic book… They told us they were organizing a boycott of SANDMAN, which they would only stop if we wrote to the American Family Association and promised to reform.

I wonder if they noticed it didn’t work last time, either…

I should note here that organizing a boycott is totally cool — and hopefully trying to tell Olive Garden where to spend their marketing dollars will keep the OMMs distracted and occupied enough that they won’t do anything that might have an actual impact.

Next: Gordon Klingenschmitt and Lance Wallnau

4. Gordon Klingenschmitt and Lance Wallnau

It’s been a while since we’ve had Dr. Chaps on this page. Gordon Klingenschmitt, readers will recall, is the ringmaster behind the “Pray In Jesus’ Name” program, a pastor, and the Colorado lawmaker who said that a woman getting her child ripped out of her womb in an assault was God’s just punishment.

In an interview originally flagged by People for the American Way’s Right Wing WatchDr. Chaps hosted on his program Lance Wallnau, a proponent of Dominionist ideology which holds that Biblical literalists can and should control government and other social institutions.

Wallnau shared with Chaps a juicy tidbit he had received from former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (who last summer claimed to possess knowledge of a “secret memo” that the Justice Department was planning to legalize “12 new perversions,” so grain of salt and all that).

Per RWW:

DeLay apparently revealed to Wallnau that leading left-wing political strategists had convened a secret meeting at which 100 very wealthy donors agreed to give a million dollars apiece to found and fund a series of progressive groups that would carry out their agenda while maintaining the appearance of independence.

Wallnau asserted that this secret effort, called “Thunder Road,” set out to identify the weaknesses in the conservative movement “and then created nine or 10 siege works, or engines, single-issue organizations that would be tasked to break down the wall and exploit the weakness.”

Here he listed the names of some of the groups tasked with bringing about this nefarious plot, including Media Matters, MoveOn, and Right Wing Watch.

Hat tip and video courtesy of the “Thunder Road” conspirators at Right Wing Watch

Next: Bill O’Reilly and Friends

3. Bill O’Reilly, Lis Wiehl, and Kimberly Guilfoyle

As you may recall, anti-abortion activists from the disingenuously named Center for Medical Progress (CMP) created a phony biomedical tissue procurement company, falsified their identities to set up surreptitiously filmed meetings, and then deceptively edited the footage they shot to make Planned Parenthood appear to be running a racket, harvesting and selling baby parts for profit.

The videos inspired a congressional probe and several state investigations (not to mention likely spurring a mentally disturbed man into killing three people at a Planned Parenthood clinic, citing “no more baby parts” as his motive). So far, the only malfeasance that’s been uncovered is that of the “journalists” themselves. A Harris County, Texas, grand jury handed down indictments of CMP founder Daniel Daleidan and an accomplice, one of which was for the felony of tampering with a governmental record.

Count on Bill O’Reilly to downplay the alleged wrongdoings and nakedly anti-women’s-rights agenda of the CMP, and praise them instead for their spunky ingenuity. Or as the no-spinster put it: The group “put together undercover stings designed to show that Planned Parenthood executives were marketing the body parts of dead fetuses.” (They were, indeed, “designed to show” it — in blatant contradiction of the facts — but O’Reilly neglects to mention that.)

Chatting with Fox News legal analyst Lis Wiehl and The Five co-host Kimbery Guilfoyle on the Factor Tuesday night, O’Reilly led a nice self-enclosed roundtable discussion, reinforcing the notion that the alleged crimes alleged (forging California drivers licenses) were entirely justified by the higher calling of “investigative journalism” to “uncover the practice that was happening,” as Guilfoyle put it. She also praised the group for its “fine work” and said the indictments represented a “witch hunt.”

According to Wiehl’s legal analysis, the charges were bogus since the fraudulent documents were not intended to commit fraud, but rather to “uncover illegal activity.” (That they didn’t actually uncover any seems not to matter terribly to her.)

The segment carelessly bandies the same falsehoods about Planned Parenthood, and the videos, that have been circulating since CMP released the tapes last summer. O’Reilly and his guests rally behind the anti-abortion crew on the dubious premise that they are “journalists.” In fairness, one could argue that what the group did was journalism — by Fox News standards.

Of course, they weren’t the only pundits on Fox News to praise the anti-abortion group…

Next: Fox & Friends

2. Steve Doocy and Andrew Napolitano

On Tuesday’s edition of Fox & Friends, Steve Doocy and Andrew Napolitano gabbed a bit about how the indicted activists are no different from any other good gumshoe reporter. Regarding the crimes they are alleged to have committed, Doocy said: “Journalists use these techniques everyday.”

Once again —let’s be clear here — these are people who deliberately and deceptively edited their footage to convey untruths that would smear an organization that provides healthcare services for 2.7 million men and women in the U.S. every year.

Per Napolitano:

This is really a head-scratcher. And I’m beginning to think that it is a political hit job on the people who did the investigating. So you have bonafide journalists assuming identities, pretending to be medical ethicists or people in the business of dealing with body parts going to Planned Parenthood saying, all these abortions, are you really selling the body parts? Well, yeah, we are. [emphasis, lots of it, mine]

No. No they’re not.

Hat tip and video courtesy of Media Matters — you can view the full transcript of their chat here.

Next: Ann Coulter

1. Ann Coulter

In her syndicated column posted Wednesday, the #1 Donald Trump fangirl ticked off her reasons for remaining steadfast in her rabid devotion to The Donald. With typically breathless prose, and casual disregard for the facts of history as well as any modicum of decency, she sings an aria of ecstatic praise for the GOP frontrunner.

Here’s just one choice tidbit. Regarding Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims, Coulter writes:

After San Bernardino, Trump proposed a temporary ban on Muslim immigration, and the media reacted as if he’d flown two planes into the World Trade Center. He didn’t budge. It turned out that no one who is not a sanctimonious douche was offended.

In fact, quite a few people — prominent conservatives and Republicans included — who are not sanctimonious douches were offended. But this snippet is representative of Coulter’s conviction that Republican voters need to stop caring whether Trump actually stands for all the tenets of conservatism (“This is not an election about who can check off the most boxes on a conservative policy list,” she writes). She rips into other Republican candidates for being weak on immigration, at one point accusing Marco Rubio of having “nearly destroyed the nation with his amnesty bill.”

The pull quote above also exemplifies her logic throughout the piece, namely that if Trump gets away with something, that makes it perfectly okay and consistent with real American values. Since Trump is still in the race, and is the unquestioned frontrunner, playing everyone in the media like a fiddle, it stands to Coulter’s reasoning that he has been entirely justified in everything he has said and done.

She praises him for, among other things, bringing the offensive term “anchor baby” into the mainstream.

She praises the rambling, risible speech with which he kicked off his campaign last June as “the biggest one-address bombshell since Sen. Joe McCarthy waved the list of 57 (not 206) Communists.” McCarthy, she notes, “bought this country another half-century of survival, and that’s exactly what Trump is doing right now.” She means the speech in which Trump called Mexicans rapists, as Coulter recalls with delirious enthusiasm.

Since Trump has brought her brand of seething, senseless xenophobia to the fore, Coulter says “I’ve felt like I’m dreaming.”

“Everything we’ve been begging politicians to talk about for the past decade,” Coulter writes — presumably referring to herself and the White Supremacists getting a boost from Trump’s popularity— “Donald Trump has brought up with a roar.”

Coulter roars along too.

Image: Darwin Bell via Flickr  

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments! Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.