The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Jim Bridenstine

Republicans may have dodged a political bullet on Wednesday, when Representative Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) announced that he will not run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by retiring senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) in 2014.

“After giving this matter serious consideration and prayer, my family and I have decided I will not run in the special election to complete Dr. Coburn’s term,” Bridenstine said in a statement, as reported by Talking Points Memo. “I would like to thank my faithful supporters who have provided so much encouragement. Their extraordinary outpouring of support strengthens my resolve to continue our efforts in the U.S. House of Representatives.”

Bridenstine, an unabashedly right-wing freshman from Tulsa, was many Tea Party groups’ favored choice to replace the infamously conservative Coburn in the Senate. Within days of Coburn’s announcement that he would step down, the Senate Conservatives Fund and the Madison Project released statements urging him to jump into the race.

Bridenstine’s choice to remain in the House clears the path for fellow Rep. James Lankford (R-OK), the fifth-ranking House Republican, to move to the upper chamber of Congress. Lankford, who has drawn criticism from the right for the perception that he is insufficiently conservative, now seems less likely to face the type of mad dash to the right that has repeatedly plagued Republican candidates and embarrassed the national party in recent GOP primaries.

Although Lankford will not have to face arguably his most threatening challenger, he won’t walk to the GOP nomination unopposed. Almost immediately after Bridenstine announced that he will not run for the seat, Oklahoma House Speaker T.W. Shannon formally jumped into the race.

No Democrats have entered the contest so far, but whoever wins the June 24 Republican primary is expected to easily win the general election in deep-red Oklahoma.

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the MAGA movement and far-right Christian fundamentalists have downplayed its severity — inspiring critics to slam MAGA as a suicidal "death cult." Christian fundamentalist Joy Pullmann, in a shocking op-ed published by the far-right website The Federalist on the day of Gen. Colin Powell's death, argues that Christians should welcome death from COVID-19, like any other cause of death, as "a good thing." And she attacks the "pagan assumptions" of those who argue in favor of widespread vaccination.

"For Christians, death is good," Pullmann writes. "Yes, death is also an evil — its existence is a result of sin. But thanks be to God, Jesus Christ has redeemed even death. In his resurrection, Christ has transformed death into a portal to eternal life for Christians…. The Christian faith makes it very clear that death, while sad to those left behind and a tragic consequence of human sin, is now good for all who believe in Christ."

Keep reading... Show less

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Don Winslow, the author of several New York Times bestsellers, blasted Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) in a newly-released video shared on social media.

For months now, Manchin has positioned himself as one of the main roadblocks of President Joe Biden's proposed Build Back Better agenda, pushing back on key provisions including child tax credits and climate initiatives.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ }}