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Tag: tommy tuberville

Washington Post Urges Jan. 6 Subpoenas For Ivanka And Kushner

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

The Washington Post editorial board is calling on the Democrats' January 6 select committee to subpoena Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, and former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows.

"Top of the list is precisely what then-President Donald Trump did before, during and after the attack," they wrote in a Tuesday op-ed. "How did he prepare his speech preceding the insurrection, in which he told the crowd to fight? What did he anticipate his audience's reaction would be? When did he know the pro-Trump mob was threatening the Capitol?"

The board added: "Answering such questions calls for subpoenaing former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows; Mr. Trump's daughter Ivanka and her husband, White House senior adviser Jared Kushner; and other White House aides with useful information."

According to a recent book by Washington Post journalists Carol D. Leonnig and Philip Rucker, Ivanka Trump attempted to calm the former president down on the day of January 6, encouraging him to call off the violent riot – a request Trump repeatedly rebuffed.

"I'm going down to my dad. This has to stop," she reportedly told her aides while spending "several hours walking back and forth" from the Oval Office in an effort to defuse the situation.

The Post's editorial board also called on the select committee to investigate a number of top Trump allies in Congress, including Reps. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Mo Brooks (R-AL), Jim Jordan (R-OH), and Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), all of whom, the Post reports, may have interacted with Trump on the day of the insurrection. McCarthy, who voted in favor of overturning the 2020 election, has been adamantly opposed to the Democratic-backed select committee and has often downplayed Trump's role in the insurgency. However, back in February, just a month after the riot, CNN reported that Trump and McCarthy had gotten into a "shouting match" over the former president's refusal to tell the rioters to stand down.

"Well, Kevin," Trump told McCarthy over the phone. "I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are."

"Who the f--k do you think you are talking to?" the lawmaker responded.

CNN also reported that Rep. Tuberville spoke with Trump on the day of the riot, calling the former president via phone to announce that Mike Pence, the former vice president, had been evacuated in time to avoid the violent horde.

The phone call has since come under scrutiny in the light of Trump's tweet attacking Pence less than ten minutes after the call.

It's not clear whether Rep. Brooks spoke with Trump on the day of the riot. However, the Alabama lawmaker did deliver a White House-approved speech during the "Stop the Steal" rally just outside the Capitol building, where he bandied Trump's election lies and told Trump's supporters: "Today is the day American patriots start taking down names."

Brooks has since personally disavowed the riot.

The Post editorial board also argued that lawmakers should put the leaders of far-right extremist groups on the stand – particularly leaders "at the center of the violence" – as well as Justice Department and Capitol Police officials who "failed to anticipate the riot."

Months after the riot, it was reported in various media that the Pentagon had denied multiple requests to deploy the National Guard, even as the chaos was unfolding. Capitol Police also reportedly had extensive intelligence that there would be violence on January 6, but the former Capitol Police chief dismissed the concerns as alarmist.

WATCH: Hilarious Video Of Confused Sen. Tuberville Talking Taxes And Regulations

Reprinted with permission from American Independent

Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) argued on Tuesday that taxes on corporations cannot be increased because "we can't put laws on private companies." Increasing the corporate tax rate to fund social services, Tuberville said, would also cause companies to leave the United States.

Tuberville made his comments during an appearance on Fox Business' Mornings with Maria to promote his Prohibiting TSP Investment in China Act, which would prohibit the federal Thrift Savings Plan pension fund from investing "in any security of an entity based in China or in a subsidiary that is owned or operated by a Chinese company," as he said in an opinion piece published by the Wall Street Journal on May 17.

While arguing that "something has to be done" about the investments, Tuberville said, "The one thing that can't be done is we can't raise the corporate income tax."

"We raise that, surely, we're going to lose them to other countries, not just China," he added.

The Biden administration has proposed an increase in corporate taxes to pay for infrastructure and jobs.

Tuberville said, "We can't tax them to death, because if we do they're going to leave."

"We can't put laws on private companies," he noted, before continuing to discuss his proposed law regulating investments in private companies.

From the May 18 edition of Fox Business' "Mornings with Maria":

TOMMY TUBERVILLE: Now private companies, something has to be done with that, but the one thing that can't be done is we can't raise the corporate income tax. We raise that, surely, we're going to lose them to other countries, not just China.
But we've got to take care of our own companies in the United States. We've got to keep their headquarters here, we can't use the inversion process, we've got to keep them here, we've got to make sure we take care of them, but we can't tax them to death, because if we do they're going to leave. And you can't blame them.
But we can't put laws on private companies. We just need to let them understand what they're doing, how it's going to affect them in the future. The bottom line today might not be the bottom line tomorrow in some of these corporations if we continue to invest in China.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

Why Sen. Tuberville’s Revelations Are Vital To Impeachment Case

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

On Friday, former President Donald Trump's lawyers wrapped up their brief arguments in defense of their client in less than four of the 16 hours they had available to them. In that time, they skirted over many of the arguments the impeachment managers have made for conviction; they instead tried to deflect blame for Trump's alleged "incitement of insurrection" on January 6 by pointing to Democrats who used similar language, even though that came in contexts where no such similar violence was unleashed.

Trump's lawyers largely skipped over a key part of the managers' case: the former president's attacks on former Vice President Mike Pence and the peril he was under. This feature of the case because particularly relevant this week after the House impeachment managers' arguments on Wednesday, because Alabama Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville revealed a new and surprising detail about his communication with the then-president that could shed light on Trump's state of mind during the January 6 attack.

Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah had already explained that he had received a phone call from Trump during the attack while in the Senate chamber. That call came a little after 2 p.m. Trump hadn't meant to call Lee, but instead wanted to talk to newly elected Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama. So Lee gave his phone to Tuberville.

It's not entirely clear what they discussed, though Rudy Giuliani was later recorded leaving a message that he thought was for Tuberville pleading with the senator to delay the count of the Electoral College votes. But on Wednesday, after a minor dispute about the events, Tuberville told reporters how the phone call ended.

"I said, 'Mr. President, they just took the vice president out, I've got to go,'" Tuberville said.

This is significant. According to the Washington Post's construction of the timeline, Pence was removed from the Senate chamber at 2:13 p.m. So we can infer that that's about the time when Tuberville told Trump that Pence had been evacuated.

It was just about 10 minutes later, at 2:24 p.m., when Trump tweeted the following:

Mike Pence didn't have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!

Many, including the impeachment managers, have pointed to this tweet as a part of Trump's incitement. Even after his mob of supporters had breached the Capitol, Trump was still fueling their rage and attacking Pence as a traitor for not helping him and his movement overturn the election.

But Tuberville's information introduces a new detail from the side of events that we know least about: Trump's perspective during the attack. It's reasonable to assume, and reporting indicates, that Trump was watching the news coverage of the events. But Tuberville's revelation confirms that Trump's targeted attack on Pence — one that was read aloud and championed by the rioters — was sent directly after the time he had already been informed of the vice president's evacuation from the chamber due to the danger posed by the mob. Pence was under direct threat, Trump had been informed of the threat, and yet the president kept up the attacks. The managers even showed clips of protesters reading Trump's 2:24 p.m. tweet aloud during the riot, further providing evidence that the insurrectionists were, indeed, incited by his words.

On Friday, Trump's lawyers largely wanted to skip over mentioning the direct attack on Pence.

A Democratic senator had noted that he was stunned by the attack in the moment.

Trial Spotlights Moment When Trump Tried To Get Pence Killed

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

Over the course of their presentation, House impeachment managers showed how Donald Trump groomed his supporters to be outraged, repeatedly encouraged violence, and finally directed them to carry out their assault on the Capitol building in order to interrupt the counting of electoral college votes. The day was full of shocking moments and previously unseen images. The number of moments when enraged insurgents intent on murder came within feet of members of Congress should have been sobering—if not terrifying—to everyone watching in the Senate.

One other thing that came up during the day was a repeated theme of praise for the way that Mike Pence did his job on Jan. 6. That may seem like a strange approach for a Democratic team to take in dealing with the impeachment of a Republican president. But pointing out how Pence stood up to Trump in saying he would certify the results of the count serves two purposes: First, it allows the House managers to showcase that a Republican can, in fact, oppose Trump, providing Pence as a role model for any Republican senators who might think of stepping out of Trump's fear-shadow.

But the other thing it does is point the finger straight at what might be the most chilling moment of January 6—one that showcases Trump's absolute malice and depravity.

The complete story of that moment was split across two presentations on Wednesday. First, as Rep. Stacey Plaskett reviewed the events of that afternoon, there was the footage and diagrams showing just how close the insurrectionists came to capturing Pence. Second, a presentation from Rep. Joaquin Castro showed how Trump's tweets about Pence came even as people were begging him to stop his supporters. When it's all put together, it looks like this.

2:10 PM

Lee recounts phone call involving Mike Pence.

As insurgents smash their way through the Capitol windows and doors, Donald Trump ignores the violence being seen on every network and tries to make a call to Sen. Tommy Tuberville. Instead, he dials Sen. Mike Lee. At the end of the day on Wednesday, Lee objected to this information and asked that a statement attributed to him be stricken from the record. However, these are the only statements made by Lee that were mentioned anywhere in the House presentation.

Conversation between Trump and Mike Lee.

Thanks to Lee's objection, Sen. Tuberville was questioned about the phone call on Wednesday afternoon and told reporters from Politico that he ended the phone call by saying this: "I said 'Mr. President, they just took the vice president out, I've got to go.'"

2:15 PM

Pence is removed from the Senate chamber.

Thanks to Tuberville's statement, there's a definitive time stamp on the call. Because Pence was quickly removed from the Senate chamber and taken to another location as the Secret Service and Capitol Police worked to secure an exit route.

2:24 PM

This means that the moment he hung up with Tuberville, Trump knew both that his supporters had entered the Capitol, and that Mike Pence was in danger. Trump's next action may be his most incredibly depraved of the entire day. Because what he did next was to pull out his phone and enter a tweet that aimed his supporters straight at the fleeing Pence.

Trump's tweet about Pence.

At the Capitol, Trump's tweet was read in real time by the enraged mob, with one of Trump's supporters even blasting out the tweet over a bullhorn just seconds after it appeared. In response, the crowd takes up a chant of "Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence!"

Insurgents read Trump

2:26 PM

Two minutes after Trump's tweet appears, officers take advantage of the distraction provided by Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman to direct Pence and his family down a flight of stairs and out of the building.

Pence is led away, with insurgents just a few feet down a hallway.

No one can say that Donald Trump didn't take action during those hours following the invasion of the Capitol. Because, on learning that Mike Pence was in peril, Trump acted instantly and decisively … to aim the threat at Pence and his family. Trump went for what he saw as both a chance of revenge at Pence for his refusal to participate in an unconstitutional scheme to "send the votes back" to states, and Trump saw an opportunity to do what he had just tried to gain from Tuberville—a delay in counting the votes. After all, what better way to delay than to have Mike Pence hanging from a gallows on the Capitol lawn?

Gallows erected outside Capitol by Trump supporters.

Thanks to Lee's objection, Tuberville nailed down the timing of Trump's call. And thanks to Tuberville, we now know the full sequence of events. And thanks to that sequence we know this: Donald Trump acted quickly and deliberately in an attempt to harm or even kill Mike Pence.

#EndorseThis: "Hello, Douchebags" Is How Bill Maher Greets Up-And-Coming Wing-Nuts

Bill Maher, host of Real Time on HBO, loves to say "farewell, douchebags" at the end of an election cycle.It's his traditional way of seeing off all the losing lunatics (otherwise generally known as Republicans). But the far right is producing these nut-jobs faster than ever.

So even as we're enjoying the exit of Rudy Giuliani, Mike Pence, and the orange man who shall not be named, there's a whole new crop of "douchebags" swarming over the capital -- and Maher feels he must introduce them to us, with appropriate burns.

You will recognize most of them. And you will laugh, uproariously.

New Rule: Hello, Douchebags! | Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) www.youtube.com

Alabama’s Ignorant New Senator May Disrupt 2021 Transition

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

Donald Trump may have found the senator he needs to challenge the election results in Congress—and it's the guy who can't name the three branches of government. Alabama Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville said Thursday he might join with some far-right members of the House to challenge the results as Congress certifies the results of the Electoral College. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is not going to like this, having already warned Senate Republicans that it would be a "terrible vote," forcing them to look anti-Trump by voting to uphold the election results.

But Tuberville's plan to try to help overturn the election results had the intended effect: a barrage of glowing tweets from Trump. Tuberville is "a great champion and man of courage. More Republican Senators should follow his lead," according to one tweet. "We had a landslide victory, and then it was swindled away from the Republican Party - but we caught them. Do something!" Every part of this is false, of course.

Less than an hour later: "Tommy will be more popular than ever before - a hero!" And "Thank you!" And then a barrage of retweets of Trump supporters exulting in Tuberville's plan. A little later, "I am very disappointed in the United States Supreme Court, and so is our great country!" The man was really in a desperate false hope/grief/rage/denial spiral Thursday evening.

Around the same time Trump went off on this tear, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany put on her campaign hat and lied about the election, insisting that the results had been suspicious in ways they simply were not and holding out hope to supporters that "litigation is ongoing"—despite those multiple rejections from the Supreme Court and dozens of rejections from lower courts.

Tuberville can definitely complicate the vote certification process in Congress, making it take hours longer and creating kind of a mess. He can't stop Joe Biden from becoming president, given McConnell's refusal to go along. But Trump's refusal to acknowledge reality is getting new fuel, priming the country for weeks more ugliness and for Trump's supporters to continue digging in in the belief that Biden's presidency will not be legitimate. The only good that can come out of this is if Trump's base turns against congressional Republicans who vote to uphold the will of the voters, and even that is not what you'd call a good outcome.

Alabama Republicans Rebut The Myth Of White Superiority

By way of introduction: Tommy Tuberville is the new Republican U.S. senator from Alabama.

He was previously a successful college football coach at the University of Mississippi, Texas Tech, Cincinnati and Auburn — where his team six times defeated their powerful in-state rival, the University of Alabama. Tuberville — with the strong endorsement of President Donald J. Trump and after a campaign in which, after first announcing he would meet his rivals in public debates, he refused to debate either his primary or general election opponents and did not hold open press conferences or announce his scheduled campaign appearances to press or to the public — still won 60 percent of the vote in November to defeat the Democratic incumbent Doug Jones.

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Vengeful Trump Takes Down Sessions In Senate Runoff

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions lost his primary race to be the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Alabama on Tuesday night in a landslide, according to Decision Desk HQ. Early returns showed him losing the shot to win back his old seat by more than 20 points to opponent Tommy Tuberville, who will face off against Democratic Sen. Doug Jones in November.

It wasn't a surprising loss for Sessions, though it is a brutal one. He gave up his seat in the Senate to become President Donald Trump's attorney general, and he lost his big chance to return because his one-time benefactor turned against him. Trump enthusiastically endorsed Tuberville while viciously and repeatedly denouncing Sessions.

There's no reason to feel any sympathy for Sessions. He's an unrepentant racist who loved Trump's anti-immigrant bigotry so much that he was the first sitting senator to endorse him as a presidential candidate. He was one of the leading architects of the family separation policy that tore apart immigrant children from their parents, inflicted untold suffering, and created enduring trauma.

But his national humiliation should be a warning to the rest of us. Like it or not, Trump is in all likelihood to remain president until at least January of 2021. And his treatment of Sessions could presage his treatment of the country — especially if he loses re-election to former Vice President Joe Biden.

Sessions genuinely did love Trump. He loved Trump enough to endorse him early in the race when many still thought he was destined for defeat. Had Trump gone down in flames, Sessions would have been seen as an easy mark.

He took the risk, though, because Sessions really believed in Trump. He believed in the anti-immigrant message, the barely concealed racial animus. He wanted to help Trump enact that vision, to turn it into law.

Yet despite his commitment to Trump, he had his limits. When early in Trump's presidency, the Russia investigation began to come into view, Sessions did nothing to stop it. Worse than that, in Trump's eyes, he recused himself from the case as the ethics regulations dictated he must. He refused repeatedly to intervene in the investigation despite Trump's pleas. Trump never forgave him for this, seeing it is a fundamental betrayal, even though Sessions was only following the law and his conscience on this matter — one of few saving graces in an otherwise loathsome career. Trump eventually fired him in what can only be described as an act of obstruction of justice and retaliation.

Sessions was thoroughly humiliated, and he only humiliated himself further when he ran for his old Senate seat. Despite Trump's constant abuse, he pledged to serve the president's will in the Senate. The Republican voters, it seemed, didn't buy it. They took Trump's word on what was good for Trump over Sessions' protestations.

So for a second time, Trump has degraded and humiliated Sessions, a man who from all appearances genuinely loved him and wanted to serve his ends. And this time, it wasn't about wresting control of a vexing investigation; it certainly wasn't about policy differences. Sessions probably would have been a loyal ally in the Senate if he had the chance to be around for a second Trump term. Trump sabotaged Sessions because he felt Sessions was insufficiently loyal when he needed it. It was an act of vindictiveness and spite. It was also, intentionally or not, a warning to anyone else who isn't loyal.

Which brings us back to the November election. Currently, Trump is strongly favored to lose. He may pull off a stunning upset and scrape by with an electoral college victory once again, but right now, it's a longshot. Most likely, Biden will be the next American president.

So what happens if Trump loses? There's been a lot of discussion about how Trump might try to contest the result or throw the election into doubt. Those are real possibilities that we need to be deeply concerned with.

But those efforts may fail, or the loss may be decisive enough that Trump doesn't even try to deny it. What then? That's when we might realize just how bad it is having a president who revels in spite and retaliation. A man with the power of the presidency, and all that that entails, will hold his office for another two and a half months after losing. He'll feel betrayed by the American people, and he'll no longer have much incentive to keep us in his good graces. We should be thinking hard about how he could be constrained in that time and what he might try to do to exact his revenge.