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Tag: pat robertson

Jen Psaki Gently Bombs Pat Robertson’s 'White House Correspondent'

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki again was forced to deal with a right-wing reporter trying to inflame American politics by dredging up old GOP talking points.

David Brody, a reporter for Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network, asked Psaki what President Joe Biden not yet meeting with House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy says about "unity."

"I guess the question is," Brody said, President Biden "has not met with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, according to Kevin McCarthy. What does that say about unity?"

Brody continued, "There are some other legislative issues as it relates to HR1 and a commission to study packing the Supreme Court as you would say."

The White House would not describe right-sizing the Supreme Court as "packing" it, that's a GOP talking point, just as is twisting Biden's remarks about wanting unity.

"And there's a lot of other lists as well, budget reconciliation, so there's a lot of folks who talk about, tens of millions of people, they're concerned about that this doesn't seem like unity at all," Brody complained.

Unfazed, Psaki asked Brody, "Do you think tens of millions of people are concerned about him not meeting with Kevin McCarthy?"

Brody pushed back, claiming "tens of millions of people are concerned about HR1, budget reconciliation, and going with a 50-vote threshold," he claimed.

"I don't think the polling bears that out," Psaki said, correctly.

At least two-thirds of Americans (68 percent) support HR1, the For the People Act, a voting rights and election reform bill. That number includes a solid majority, 57 percent, of Republicans. And a majority of Americans support killing the filibuster to advance HR1 and a $15 minimum wage.

"I will say that the President's view is that bringing the country together is bringing the American people together," Psaki continued. "So when I say he's, he is focused on bringing you know, bringing people together, bringing Democrats or Republicans together, he's not talking about solving bipartisanship in 'this zip code here.'"


Far-Right White Evangelicals Mourning ’Satanic Delusion’ Of Biden Victory

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

The Christian Right is in mourning over President Donald Trump being voted out of office. Pat Robertson, the far-right evangelical who founded the Christian Broadcasting Network, has declared that the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden on January 20, 2021 must be prevented, saying, "We will not give up this great country. And Satan, you cannot have it." But the irony is that the incoming president is much more religious than Trump, who has demonstrated how little he knows about Christianity and the Bible.

Although Trump was raised Presbyterian, religion was never a high priority in his life. But when he ran for president in 2016, Trump realized that the Christian Right was a prominent voting bloc in the GOP and went out of his way to pander to the far-right White evangelicals he had no connection to in the past. The Trump of the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s was more of a Blue Dog Democrat than a GOP culture warrior, and he spent a lot more time in casinos than in churches.

Journalist Ed Kilgore, in an article published by New York magazine on December 17, notes Trump's history of butchering Biblical references during his speeches.

Kilgore explains, "Before Donald Trump became the very favorite politician of White conservative evangelicals, he was regularly a figure of sport for displaying exceptional ignorance in all matters religious. A particularly rich example of his clumsiness occurred when he was campaigning at evangelical stronghold Liberty University early in 2016 and tried to quote a Bible verse that was very familiar to the audience, since it's etched on several buildings there."

Kilgore adds that there were many other "religious gaffes Trump committed while stumping for votes" in 2016.

"On another occasion along the campaign trail," Kilgore recalls, "Trump was asked about his favorite line of scripture. He delivered a word salad for a while and finally tried to recall 'an eye for an eye,' not the sort of thing Christians of any variety consider normative for the faith of the Prince of Peace…... Just prior to the Iowa caucuses, Trump was in a Council Bluffs church when a plate came down the pews with communion bread on it. The billionaire misidentified it as a collection plate and put a couple of bills on it."

Kilgore also notes that in 2017, Trump met with two Presbyterian minsters and was surprised to learn that they didn't consider themselves evangelicals but rather, described themselves as "Mainline Protestants."

Of course, anyone with even a basic knowledge of Christianity realizes that Presbyterians aren't evangelicals any more than Episcopalians or Lutherans — two other examples of Mainline Protestants — are evangelicals. And there's no way that either Biden, a devout Catholic, or former President Barack Obama, a Mainline Protestant, would have made that mistake or confused a communion plate with a collection plate. Unlike Trump, Biden and Obama both have a long history of being churchgoing Christians and obviously have an extensive knowledge of the Bible.

If Pat Robertson were to sit down with Biden or Obama, they could have an in-depth conversation about scripture. Yet Robertson, like much of the Christian Right, adores Trump while hating Biden and Obama — which underscores the deeply tribalist nature of the Christian Right.

The Christian Right has long been a hate movement, and it is as much about White nationalism and far-right identity politics as it is about Protestant fundamentalism. The late Rev. Jerry Falwell, Sr., founder of Liberty University and co-founder of the Moral Majority, was a notorious segregationist during the 1950s and 1960s, when he vigorously defended Jim Crow laws in the pulpit and argued that the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a not a true Christian because of his anti-segregation views. During the 1980s, Falwell defended the racist apartheid regime in South African and encouraged Christians to buy krugerrands to support it.

The late Republican Sen. Barry Goldwater, known for being an arch-conservative in his day, was vehemently critical of Falwell and the Christian Right during the 1980s — describing them as dangerous fanatics and warning that the GOP was making a huge mistake by allying itself with that movement. But many Republicans ignored Goldwater, much to the GOP's detriment.

To the Christian Right and far-right White evangelicals, the fact that Biden and Obama are more religious than Trump is irrelevant. Robertson, the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins, James Dobson (founder of Focus on the Family) and other evangelical Trump supporters are extreme tribalists, and they view Trump as part of their tribe — which is why Trump got a pass when, according to his former personal attorney Michael Cohen, he had extramarital affairs with a porn star (Stormy Daniels) and a Playboy model (Karen McDougal) and paid them hush money to keep quiet.

Trump repeatedly attacked Biden as anti-Christian during his 2020 presidential campaign. But in 2017, Trump didn't even know the difference between Presbyterians and evangelicals.

The Christian Right will miss Trump dearly when he leaves off on January 20, 2021. And no matter how much Biden goes to church or accurately quotes the Bible, it won't matter to the far-right evangelical extremists who value White identity politics above all else.

Televangelist Robertson Suggests Virus Is Punishment For Marriage Equality

Televangelist Pat Robertson associated COVID-19 with marriage equality and abortion on Monday on Christian Broadcast Network's "The 700 Club."

His co-host Terry Meeuwsen read a comment from a viewer who asked about Robertson's reference to COVID-19 last week and whether "God heal our land and forgive the sins" when people can legally access abortion and marriage equality.

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#EndorseThis: Trump Finally Admits Jamal Khashoggi Is Dead

More than two weeks after the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, amid many reports of the journalist’s gruesome demise, Donald Trump finally admits that Khashoggi is probably dead.

But Stephen Colbert doesn’t find the president’s perfunctory expression of sorrow very convincing. Nor is Stephen much impressed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s statement, upon returning from Riyadh, about American concern over “the incident surrounding Mr. Khashoggi. He’s especially skeptical of the Saudi “investigation” — which has already left one suspect dead in a “car accident.”

And of course there’s even more daily craziness in the White House, as Colbert reports.

Just click.

#EndorseThis: Jimmy Kimmel’s Resident Trickster Makes A Fool Out Of Pat Robertson

We can’t help but notice how hard Pat Robertson squints his eyes when he prays on TV. Perhaps the arch-conservative televangelist is trying to black-out the sins of his past, which include pushing for war in the Middle East, telling women not to be independent, and blaming 9/11 on homosexuals.

Jimmy Kimmel believes in fighting Christian Right hatred with laughter. But he’s got help this time. In today’s clip, Kimmel destroys Robertson’s distorted 700 Club take on the FBI investigation of President Trump, then sets up a classic practical joke played expertly by one of his staffers, described only as a “kid” named Jesse.

Jesse is an A-grade troll. Using a girlfriend’s name for cover, he writes Robertson asking for tips on overcoming a fear of horses due to a fictional bite from a Clydesdale. Hilariously, the crooked preacher reads the letter on air before saying the worst thing imaginable to a damsel-in-distress scared of Budweiser’s beasts. Old Pat’s people skills must be as bad as his politics.

Push play to watch a hate-monger get hoodwinked.

This Week In Crazy: Come, Armageddon

Despite prior warnings to this effect, which turned out to be premature, conservative right-wingers are quite sure that this time it really is the End Times.

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. Kevin Swanson

2015-11-06-kevin-swanson-cow-manure-right-wing-watch-screen-grab-640So much has been made of pastor Kevin Swanson’s “kill-the-gays rally,” as Rachel Maddow aptly characterized it, that I almost hesitate to include him on this week’s list. But if a crazed man announcing that, were he invited to his gay son’s wedding, he’d “sit in cow manure” and “spread it all over my body” doesn’t make the TWIC page, then the TWIC page has no meaning.

Swanson’s epic caterwaul continues: “I’m not laughing! I’m grieving! I’m mourning!” He characterized gay people as being riddled with sores, and wailed that “People are carving happy faces on the sores! That’s not a nice thing to do! Don’t you dare carve happy faces on open, pussy sores!!”

This mewling, hysterical tantrum was part of Swanson’s protracted introduction of, improbably, three GOP presidential candidates — Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, and Bobby Jindal — who attended the Des Moines rally in an apparent demonstration that the Iowan evangelical vote is so valuable a candidate will stoop to even the most shameful low. (While onstage, Cruz insisted that atheists and nonreligious people were unfit to be president — to rapturous applause.)

While he explained that homosexuality was a capital offense, Swanson stopped short of saying civil leaders should actually be the ones sentencing them to death — but only because “we need some time for homosexuals to repent.”

Of course, the candidates’ campaigns are already backpedaling: Huckabee is now saying he didn’t know what he was getting into, a pretty dubious claim — considering the bevy of material on Swanson’s history of hateful anti-gay, anti-women rhetoric that’s readily available online, and the fact that media outlets and watchdog groups were making a lot of noise about this last week.

But Jesus never used Google, so apparently neither does Huck.

Next: Pat Robertson

4. Pat Robertson

PatRobertsonScreenshotPat Robertson, the ill-tempered wax sculpture who hosts The 700 Club, has some hard words for anyone who thinks they can be both gay and Christian at the same time. (Hint: you can’t.)

Taking a question from a viewer on that subject on his show Tuesday, Robertson said that any such person would be “misguided and a hypocrite,” calling the trend of gay-friendly churches “the last stage of Gentile world apostasy.”

The only churches worth a damn, in Robertson’s view, are the ones that look on miscarried babies as God’s deliverance from future Hitlers, treat anorexia like a case of demonic possession, or believe that marriage equality will lead to Christians being forced into sodomy. Such sensible dogma.

Of course, Mad Pat isn’t the only one who believes the End Times are upon us…

Via Right Wing Watch

Next: Michele Bachmann

3. Michele Bachmann

Michele BachmannThe former congresswoman who recently blamed floods in South Carolina on the nuclear deal with Iran, is off on another one of End-Is-Nigh kicks, espying portents of Armageddon in every news clipping and slice of fresh toast she comes across. “It’s literally day by day by day,” she said. “We’re seeing the fulfillment of scripture right in front of our eyes, even while we’re on the ground.”

On a recent taping of Family Research Council president Tony Perkins’ Washington Watch radio show, she encouraged Christian Americans to get busy ticking off their pre-apocalypse bucket list, among which items, she said, should be the conversion of as many Jews as possible.

Per Right Wing Watch, Bachmann said that Christians “recognize the shortness of the hour,

and that’s why we as a remnant want to be faithful in these days and do what it is that the Holy Spirit is speaking to each one of us, to be faithful in the Kingdom and to help bring in as many as we can — even among the Jews — share Jesus Christ with everyone that we possibly can because, again, He’s coming soon.

Via Right Wing Watch

Next: Judge Scott Johansen

2. Judge Scott Johansen

Update below.

A Utah judge ordered Tuesday that the infant foster child of a married lesbian couple be removed and reassigned to a heterosexual couple. His decision was based entirely on the fact that the child’s foster parents were lesbian.

April Hoagland and Becky Peirce have been raising the child for the last three months, along with Peirce’s 12- and 14-year-old children, and they are joined in support by both the foster child’s state-appointed attorney and her biological mother, who does not wish to see the family broken up.

From KUTV:

The women, who are legally married and were approved as foster parents in Utah earlier this year after passing home inspections, background checks and interviews from DCFS [Utah Division of Child and Family Services], said the judge told them there was a lot of research that indicated children who are raised in same-sex parent homes do not do as well as children who are raised by heterosexual parents.

Judge Scott Johansen apparently did not actually name or cite the vague research on which he based his decision, and because this is a family court ruling, the court records have not been released. The New Civil Rights Movement notes that there is “no valid research that proves children raised by same-sex parents do not perform as well as children raise by different-sex parents,” and that the “most widely publicized study that claimed to show adult children raised by same-sex parents, authored by Mark Regnerus, has been thoroughly discredited by the scientific community.”

Johansen is same juvenile court judge who dispensed some eye-for-an-eye justice in 2012, when said he would reduce a 13-year-old girl’s sentence if her mother agreed to chop off her ponytail in the courtroom, and asked her to keep chopping to the satisfaction of the complainant.

Maybe there’s a reason we don’t rely on Old Testament justice anymore.

American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer was quick to voice his support for the judge’s ruling, raving about the “sexual purity” and “sexual integrity of our children” on his show Thursday, and affirming he was “100 percent standing behind” Johansen.

“We should never countenance policies that place children in same-sex households,” Fischer said, repeating the same debunked studies that Judge Johansen presumably invoked.

That would probably be enough to land Fischer on the list this week, however…

Next: Bryan Fischer

Update: Judge Johansen amended his decision Friday, saying that the DCFS did not have to take the infant child away from Hoagland and Peirce next week, as originally ordered. There is still a custody hearing scheduled for Dec. 4.

1. Bryan Fischer

BrianFischerThe folks at the American Family Association uploaded video of Bryan Fischer’s taping of his Wednesday radio show under the header “Wars with other nations not just military conflict but spiritual warfare.”

Talk about burying the lede. Don’t sell yourselves short, AFA. The torrent of verbal ipecac flowing from Fischer’s mouth this week is so much more revolting than that.

Fischer discusses the story of Babylon sacking Jerusalem, as told in the Book of Jeremiah. In Fischer’s gloss, the story of a pagan nation that became an instrument of God’s wrath has special bearing for modern-day America, because like Jerusalem of 587 B.C.E., we too have experienced a smiting in the form of an invasion of godless infidels. Fischer is referring, of course, to the attacks of September 11, 2001, which he characterizes as God’s “wake-up call” to a “Christian nation” to get its act together.

Fischer continued:

I believe — I’m not saying that I know this — God hasn’t told me this one way or another, but I think it’s possible that 9/11 was exactly that. That was God using an utterly pagan, godless, demonic religion and the followers of that utterly pagan, godless, and demonic religion to discipline a Christian nation that has entered into a covenant relationship with God. It’s God’s way of giving us a wake-up call and it’s god’s way of demonstrating that He will not be mocked…

Needless to say, there is no section of any U.S. history textbook (outside of Texas, anyway), which tells the story of how the founders entered into a covenant with the Christian God. But that’s small change — just a few weeks ago, Fischer actually argued that the Constitution gave states free rein to bulldoze mosques.

Number the stars, Bryan. So shall your fallacies be.

Image: US Department of Energy via Wiki

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!

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Late Night Roundup: The Lincoln-Douglas-Wilmore Debates

Larry Wilmore went back in time to cover some other debates. And there’s one thing we can be sure of: Black voters will never leave the Republican Party!

Over at The Daily Show, Trevor Noah and Jordan Klepper looked at all the similarities between the fantasy football scandals, and Wall Street.

Jimmy Kimmel presented the latest installment of “The Collected Wisdom of Pat Robertson.”

This Week In Crazy: Twisted Logic And Right-Wing Blame Games

Just when you thought the far-right fringe couldn’t possibly connect abortion with the stock market, or equate the LGBT Pride flag with a white supremacist symbol, they just, well, go ahead and do that. It’s “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the shameful, racist, and hateful speech of the increasingly illogical right wing. Starting with one of our regulars:

5. Pat Robertson

PatRobertsonScreenshotSure, Pat Robertson, an organization that provides women’s reproductive health services is to blame for the recent stock market slide. The conservative televangelist said this week that “Black Monday” was God’s punishment for legal abortion and the federal government’s funding of Planned Parenthood. As anyone who watches Robertson’s The 700 Club (or who reads “This Week In Crazy”) knows, the host typically blames any negative incident, natural disaster, or preventable tragedy on abortion, same-sex marriage, or the LGBT community in general. In his usual fire-and-brimstone style, Robertson said:

We will pay dearly as a nation for this thing going on…. And possibly if we were to stop all this slaughter the judgment of God might be lifted from us. But it’s coming, ladies and gentlemen. We just had a little taste of it in terms of the financial system, but it’s going to be shaken to its core in the next few months, years or however long it takes and it will hurt every one of us.

I’m no economist, but I’m pretty sure Monday’s selloff had something to do with the cyclical nature of capitalism and China’s devaluing of its currency, which caused instability in global markets. Planned Parenthood has been accused of some vile things, but manipulating currency is not one of them.

No matter to Robertson, who likes to play financial advisor, warning viewers that troubled times are ahead. “You don’t know where to go, there is no place to hide financially except in the Lord,” he said. “The Lord is the ultimate refuge.”

Via Right Wing Watch

Next: Donald Trump

4. Donald Trump

Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump's greets the crowd during his

Continuing his heated rivalry with Spanish-language news network Univision, Donald Trump had reporter Jorge Ramos booted from a campaign event in Iowa on Tuesday. The reason? Ramos asked Trump a question about immigration — out of turn.

The Donald’s reply: “Go back to Univision.”

Putting aside the fact that this is far from Trump’s first press conference, so he should be used to pushy reporters firing questions at him, his comment about Ramos showed the Republican presidential candidate’s true bigoted colors. (“Go back to Univision.” = “Go back to Mexico.”)

After the incident, Trump tried to portray Ramos as hysterical. “Certainly he was not chosen … he just stands up and starts screaming, so maybe he’s at fault also,” Trump said, adding, “He’s obviously a very emotional person.”

This coming from the man running for President of the United States, yet has a fit every time a reporter asks a challenging question, has gotten to second base with a flagpole, and has people touch his hair to show it’s his own.

Trump is not just “emotional” and vain, but he can be a bully, especially when provoked on his core campaign issue, and God forbid, asked to answer a direct question directly. At the campaign event, he repeatedly tells Ramos to “sit down” as the reporter continues speaking and reminding Trump that he has the right to ask a question.

The legendary Univision broadcaster is still hoping to land an interview with Trump.

Via Raw Story

Continue reading: Keith Ablow

3. Keith Ablow

Keith_AblowFox News commentator and psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow sounds like the last person who should be sharing “expertise” on gun control and mental health issues. In a Fox segment this week, Ablow charged President Obama with “inflaming racial discord.”

As strange as the allegation was, delivered as an afterthought that sounded more like a rehearsed jab at the president, Ablow’s comment was typical of the right’s urge to blame the guy in the White House, with little evidence, for everything. Ablow echoed a conservative meme: The problem isn’t guns but lack of mental health care — which means “hands off our guns; blame the crazies.”

Sensible people can agree that individuals with mental health problems, as well as many others, should not have access to firearms. But Ablow’s claim that mentally ill people are the problem and guns are not is rebutted by many studies that show people living with mental illness are more likely to be the victims of violence than the perpetrators.

More ridiculous is how Ablow concluded the segment, seeming to place blame on the president because a black man who protested against alleged job discrimination just killed two white people: “There are some people who are unhinged out there who actually think [Obama is] right when he’s just trying to fan the flames of racial disharmony,” Ablow said.

What does Ablow mean when he says Obama has inflamed racial discord? Perhaps that the president has spoken in support of civil rights, voting rights and, repeatedly, about gun violence.

According to Ablow, that’s the real problem: “It would be helpful if President Obama, frankly, would stop tweeting … about gun control and get serious about attacking mental health care.” Again, the pundit blames a small segment of the population of people who commit violent crimes, instead of the policies and lawmakers that allow guns into the hands of far too many unstable people.

Via Media Matters

Next: Casey Davis

2. Casey Davis

CaseyDavis_Kentucky_clerkThe county clerk from Kentucky who continues to defy the Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage is apparently willing to allow his homophobia to take him to an early grave. Casey Davis, no relation to his fellow “religious freedom fighter” Kim Davis, said this week that marriage equality is “a war on Christianity” and that he is willing to fight, even if it kills him. He told a West Virginia radio show:

If it takes it, I will go to jail over — if it takes my life, I will die for because I believe I owe that to the people that fought so I can have the freedom that I have, I owe that to them today, and you do, we all do. They fought and died so we could have this freedom and I’m going to fight and die [so] my kids and your kids can keep it.

Incoherent and manic as he is, Davis continues to argue that issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples would violate his right to religious freedom. He talks a lot about God, freedom, and fighting for what he believes in, but says much less about his responsibilities as a government employee, the freedom of LGBT people to marry, and the long struggle of gay people to legally marry those they love. Then there is his misunderstanding of the U.S. Constitution:

There is a travesty taking place with that Supreme Court ruling was completely unconstitutional, completely unconstitutional. They have no right to tell us, the state of Kentucky, that our law that was voted with what was 70 percent of the people that it was wrong; they had no right.

Actually, as the Supreme Court, they have every right under the Constitution to find state laws in violation of constitutional rights. That’s part of the High Court’s mandate. Davis, on the other hand, has no right to deny LGBT people their right to marry. To borrow a semantic framework that conservatives love, if Davis doesn’t like same-sex marriage, he should move to Russia.

Via Right Wing Watch

Next: Dinesh D’Souza

1. Dinesh D’Souza

dinesh-dsouza-facebook-640We’ve saved the worst for last. Following the tragic televised killing of two journalists in Virginia this week, D’Souza took to Twitter to point out supposed progressive hypocrisy on gun violence, race and ideology.

D’Souza suggested that because the murderer was a gay black man, officials should demand the removal of the LGBT pride flag from public spaces, as occurred with the Confederate flag following the killing of nine black people in a Charleston, South Carolina, church by a white supremacist.

The key difference, of course, is what each flag represents and the killers’ motives in the shootings. The Confederate flag symbolizes white supremacy, or as its defenders argue, Southern “heritage not hate.” Except that the heritage of the South involves a long history of slavery, KKK lynchings, voter disenfranchisement, and other human rights violations perpetrated against black people. The rainbow flag’s history has no such violent or hateful meaning.

Consider D’Souza’s latest odious, trolling tweets, in which he blames President Obama for what is yet another example of gun violence resulting from unregulated access to firearms, illogically equates love with hate, and confuses healthy pride in your culture with dangerous pride in a racist ideology.

Via Mediaite

Photo illustration above: Confederate flag, Pride flag via Flickr, Edited Matt Surrusco