Rupert Murdoch

'Toilet Paper With Trump's Face': Wolff Book Dishes DeSantis, Carlson, Murdochs

A "juicy tell-all" book filled with "at-times absurd anecdotes" about the Fox News family and its relationship to Republicans like Florida governor and 2024 GOP hopeful Ron DeSantis is set to hit shelves later this month, according to an exclusive report from The Daily Beast.

Per the Beast, author Michael Wolff offers a "behind-the-curtains look into Fox's handling of the Dominion defamation lawsuit over its 2020 election lies, its post-election clashes with former President Donald Trump, its shocking firing of Carlson, and the Murdoch family’s Succession-like turmoil."

According to the report, Wolff "writes that prior to being fired from his top-rated primetime perch, Carlson considered a run for president in order to escape his Fox News contract. The author also details a bizarre incident that allegedly occurred when Carlson shared a meal with DeSantis."

Calling DeSantis "impersonal," Wolff notes the governor pushed Carlson's "dog under the table," writing, "Had he kicked the dog? Susie Carlson's judgment was clear: she did not ever want to be anywhere near anybody like that ever again. Her husband agreed. DeSantis, in Carlson's view, was a 'fascist.' The pot calling the kettle even blacker. Forget Ron DeSantis."

Regarding Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch, who longs to find another GOP presidential candidate to support other than Trump or DeSantis, Wolff writes that when the billionaire "was brought reports of [Fox host Sean] Hannity's on- and off-air defense of Fox's post-election coverage, he perhaps seemed to justify his anchor: 'He's retarded, like most Americans.'"

Furthermore, the news outlet reports:

Another recurring subject of salacious gossip in the book is Murdoch's attitude towards homosexuality. In one of the book's many anecdotes, the billionaire mogul's now-ex-wife Jerry Hall berated him over the way he discussed someone's sexuality. 'Rupert, why are you such a homophobe?' Hall allegedly shouted at Murdoch during a meal with her friends on a patio in St. Barts, according to the book. 'You're such a homophobe,' she reportedly added, before telling her pals: 'He's such an old man.' (Hall did not immediately respond to a request for comment.)

The Beast also notes:

Wolff paints Rupert's son Lachlan, Fox Corp's current chief executive, as a virtue-signaling elitist who didn’t want his celebrity friends to think of him as a Trump supporter or a right-winger. At one point, Wolff alleges, this included showing off his Resistance-style anti-Trump toiletries.

'In the run-up to the 2016 election, the bathrooms at the Mandeville house featured toilet paper with Trump's face, reported visitors with relief and satisfaction,' Wolff writes. 'He told people that his wife and children cried when Trump was elected.'

The Fall: The End of Fox News and the Murdoch Dynastywill be available for purchase September 26.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Mark Gonzalez

Tough Texas Prosecutor Announces Senate Bid To Unseat Ted Cruz (VIDEO)

In a YouTube video published early Tuesday morning, Nueces County, Texas District Attorney Mark Gonzalez announced his bid for United States Senate. Hours later, he resigned from his position as district attorney, KRIS 6 News reports.

"I was such a threat, they tried to remove me from office," he says in the video, referring to state Republicans' "efforts to remove him from his elected office."

That's what inspired his 2024 senate run against Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), according to The New York Times.

"Texans deserve a leader as tough as they are, willing to fight for justice, even on the really cold and dark days because that's when it matters the most," Gonzales says in the video. "That's why I'm running against Ted Cruz, because the little guy needs someone to stand up for them."

Described earlier this month by the Times as "a former criminal defense attorney with tattoos across his body, including one reading 'Not Guilty,' whose name appeared in a Texas state police database of registered gang members," the publication notes that in the video "Gonzalez took the unusual step of emphasizing an element of his background that many candidates might have sidestepped: a drunk-driving arrest when he was 19."

According to Tuesday's report, "In the resignation letter, he said he had taken responsibility and pleaded guilty, then been dismayed to see the same charges dismissed for a defendant who, unlike Mr. Gonzalez, could afford a lawyer."

He said, "It dawned on me that the wealthy and well-connected have a different criminal legal system applied to them and accusations against them than everyone else does. My ignorance of the system was detrimental to my life and has been to so many others just like me."

Gonzales notes that before Texas GOP lawmakers criticized the way he did his job as district attorney, "I hadn't really had any more taste or want for politics. With the petition and some of the stuff that's been going on at least statewide, it just kind of — I don't know if the word is just angered me or incited me or something — and so I just decided that I don't want to represent or try to represent just Nueces County. I want to represent Texans that want change."

Watch the video below or at this link.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Far-Right Eugenics Advocates Warn Of 'Population Collapse'

Far-Right Eugenics Advocates Warn Of 'Population Collapse'

A conference warning that "by the end of the century, nearly every country on earth will have a shrinking population, and economic systems dependent on reliable growth will collapse" is set to be held at an Austin, Texas hotel in December and led by far-right eugenicists, The Guardian reports.

The Guardiannotes:

Broadly, eugenics is a group of beliefs and practices aimed at improving the genetic quality of a human population. It became the basis of a popular movement from the late 19th century, and led to governments around the world adopting policies such as forced sterilization of disabled and mentally ill people. The field was discredited after the second world war due to its association with racial policies in Nazi Germany, and many critics have attacked it as a pseudoscience.

According to the report, Natal conference organizer Kevin Dolan "has a long history as an activist and influencer on the far right," although the conference's website claims the event "has no political or ideological goal other than a world in which our children can have grandchildren."

During a June interview with "the Jolly Heretic podcast, hosted by Edward Dutton, an Englishman who left an academic position in Finland after his university found that a work he co-authored with the self-described 'scientific racist," Dolan suggested "that the pro-natalist and the eugenic positions are very much not in opposition, they're very much aligned."

Additionally, the report notes when asked "why outsiders should be interested in Mormonism, Dolan said, "I think we actually are going to win. I think we're going to inherit the earth."

The Guardian reports the longtime right-wing influencer "pseudonymously promoted conservative Mormon and alt-right talking points" online until "his identity was revealed by antifascist activists and subsequently corroborated by Guardian reporting" in 2021.

Furthermore, he has promoted the conference, which will be held at The Line Hotel, "on the far-right podcast circuit, and has explicitly linked the conference's 'pro-natalist' orientation to eugenics," The Guardian notes.

Some event speakers include "Malcolm and Simone Collins, who have attracted significant coverage on both sides of the Atlantic for their warnings about slowing birthrates in advanced economies and how this will lead to 'catastrophic population collapse,'" as well as "Charles Haywood, the former shampoo magnate who the Guardian revealed as the founder and sponsor of a far-right network of fraternal lodges, the Society for American Civic Renewal, and who has speculated about his own future as a 'warlord' in 'more-or-less open warfare with the federal government' in a post-collapse America."

Global Project on Hate and Extremism co-founder Heidi Beirich told the news outlet, "It's not surprising to see far-right folks, eugenicist types and white nationalists joining forces at a conference like this. They have become bedfellows. The far right has long fretted about a demographic winter, and though they don't necessarily say it openly, what they are referring to most often is a fall in white birthrates."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Vivek Ramaswamy

Eminem To Vivek: Stop Using My Music Or Else

During an appearance in Iowa earlier this month, biotech millionaire and 2024 Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy "just got on the stage and cut loose" to rapper Eminem's song "Lose Yourself" — and it will likely be the last time, according to The Washington Post.

Per The Post, the longtime emcee has asked the GOP hopeful to refrain from using his music again.

A letter sent to Ramaswamy from the performance rights organization BMI, according to the report, notes that the company will "consider any performance of" the rapper's compositions — also known as Eminem Works — "by the Vivek 2024 campaign from this date forward to be a material breach of the Agreement for which BMI reserves all rights and remedies with respect thereto."

The Post reports:

Moments ahead of his performance in Iowa, Ramaswamy — who used to rap as a student at Harvard University under the stage name 'Da Vek' — was asked by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) what his favorite walkout song is. He responded with 'Lose Yourself.' The song, from the 2002 film '8 Mile' and won the Oscar for Best Original Song, contains autobiographical elements from the rapper’s life and his overcoming of obstacles in his path to fame. Ramaswamy gleefully performed part of the song to a cheering crowd at the Iowa State Fair, and the moment went viral online.

The newspaper also notes:

This is not the first time the rapper, who's also known as Slim Shady and was born Marshall B. Mathers III, snubbed a Republican politician.

On the day of the third and final presidential debate of the 2016 election, Eminem released a surprise song titled 'Campaign Speech' warning Americans against then-candidate Donald Trump. Nearly a year later, at the BET Hip Hop Awards, the rapper said Trump's policies were harmful to America and also criticized fans of his who voted for Trump in 2016. Right before the 2004 election, Eminem released a political protest song called 'Mosh' that openly criticized then-President George W. Bush.

According to the report, Ramaswamy's campaign senior adviser Tricia McLaughlin replied to an email with questions about Eminem's request, saying, "To the American people’s chagrin, we will have to leave the rapping to the Real Slim Shady."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Vivek Ramaswamy

Ramaswamy Is Not A Registered Republican In His Home State

Biotech millionaire and 2024 Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy, according to a Friday NBC News report, is classified as an "'unaffiliated' voter" in the Ohio county "he's been registered to vote since November 2021."

Ahead of the first GOP debate earlier this week, several polls indicated that Ramaswamy had "moved into third place in the 2024 GOP presidential primary," but his "MAGA comments" during the debate "drew applause from Republican voters in the audience, indicating that he has a good shot at overtaking [Florida Governor Ron] DeSantis in the primary."

Per NBC, the GOP hopeful "has not voted in a Republican primary recently enough to be affiliated with the party in his home state's voting records," and "he brushed past a question about his sparse voting history during Wednesday's GOP presidential debate."

NBC reports:

According to voting records first posted by an account called Ohio Legislative Watch on X, the website formerly known as Twitter, Ramaswamy did not vote in the Ohio state primaries last year. The records, which NBC News has independently reviewed, also show 'no history recorded' in the primary held this past May.

Earlier this year, the GOP hopeful "proposed adding a constitutional amendment to raise the voting age from eighteen to twenty-five unless citizens pass a civics test or enlist for six months of public service."

According to the 26th Amendment to the United States Constitution, "the right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Fox News Ignored Marine Corps Request To Correct False Story About Fallen Officer

Fox News Ignored Marine Corps Request To Correct False Story About Fallen Officer

Fox News executives were asked by the United States Marine Corps to amend a story about a 23-year-old Marine killed in Afghanistan, according to The Washington Post, but instead the right-wing news outlet deleted the report.

Per The Post, "The July 25 FoxNews.com story," written by Michael Lee, "relied on an account from freshman Rep. Cory Mills (R-Fla.), who stated that the family of Sgt. Nicole L. Gee had shouldered 'a heavy financial burden' of $60,000 to retrieve her body from Afghanistan," after becoming "one of 13 U.S. service members killed in a suicide bombing at the Kabul airport in the frantic final days of the U.S. withdrawal."

Marine Corps spokesman Major James Stenger wrote in an email to Fox executives, "The allegations originally published turned out to be false, which I suspect Mr. Lee knew in the first place, and was the reason he did not seek comment from the Marine Corps."

Lee, according to the report, "quoted Mills calling the family's supposed expenditures an 'egregious injustice,' but "neither Pentagon officials nor Gee's family were quoted in the original story."

The Postreports:

After Stenger's first email, Fox added a statement from the Marines to the story and changed its headline. The original headline read: 'Family forced to pay to ship body of Marine killed after Pentagon policy change; 'Egregious injustice.' The new version said: 'Family shouldered burden to transport body of Marine killed in Afghanistan, GOP Rep says.'

The newspaper also notes that "Stenger emailed executives again to say that the new headline and story were still false," writing, "Using the grief of a family member of a fallen Marine to score cheap clickbait points is disgusting."

Instead of adhering to "Stenger's request for a correction, retraction or an apology to Gee's family," according to the report, "Fox then removed the story from its website altogether."

The Post notes, "The Marines' communications with Fox were first reported by Military.com, which obtained the emails this week under a Freedom of Information Act request."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Donald Trump

'Anyone Else Would Be In Jail': Independents Who Voted For Trump Drop Him

Former President Donald Trump has lost his grip on some Arizona MAGA supporters since his August 1 indictment by a Fulton County Superior Court grand jury on charges related to his alleged attempt to overturn the 2020 election.

According to a recent Reuters report, a number of Arizona voters who identify as Independent and who previously supported Trump, have decided to vote for someone else next year.

Per Reuters, "Stu Rothenberg, a non-partisan political analyst, said Trump is in danger of losing enough independents and moderates to lose next year's election, in part because of the indictments," noting "Close elections are won at the margins."

Susan Aitken voted for the former president in 2016, and now she says, "I'm glad he's been indicted" in Georgia.

"He was already talking about overturning the election even before he lost," the 71-year-old said. "Anybody else would be in jail by now."

The news outlet reports:

Thom Reilly, a political professor at Arizona State University who has authored studies on independent voters, said recent elections in Arizona and in other battleground states show that independents have been the key swing votes in close elections.

'The winning party in the last four election cycles carried political independents,' Reilly said. In Arizona in 2020 - which Biden won by less than a percentage point - Biden carried independents by 9% over Trump, showing how crucial they were to Biden's victory in the state, Reilly said.

"He's delusional," Mark Clarcq, an Arizona Independent who voted for Trump in 2016 told Reuters. "He's still saying the 2020 election was fraudulent. In Georgia, he was definitely trying to gain votes he didn't have. That's an illegal process. Absolutely I support the Georgia indictment. The justice system should play out and I don't think he should be pardoned," Clarcq, 77, said in a shopping mall in northern Phoenix.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Donald Trump

Trump Declares He Won't Join Any GOP Presidential Debates

Former President Donald Trump said Sunday he will not participate in any GOP debates.

This comes after the 2024 MAGA hopeful announced that he plans to skip the first upcoming debate hosted by Fox News Wednesday, August 23 to, instead, interview with Tucker Carlson, the right-wing network's former leading host.

The former president wrote via Truth Social Sunday, "New CBS POLL, just out, has me leading the field by 'legendary' numbers. TRUMP 62%, 46 Points above DeSanctimonious (who is crashing like an ailing bird!), Ramaswamy 7%, Pence 5%, Scott 3%, Haley 2%, Sloppy Chris Christie 2%, 'Aida' Hutchinson 1%. The public knows who I am & what a successful Presidency I had, with Energy Independence, Strong Borders & Military, Biggest EVER Tax & Regulation Cuts, No Inflation, Strongest Economy in History, & much more. I WILL THEREFORE NOT BE DOING THE DEBATES!"

According to The New York Times, Fox News "executives like President Jay Wallace and Chief Executive Officer Suzanne Scott have both recently met with Trump for dinner 'hoping to persuade Mr. Trump to attend the debate,'" but still remain unsuccessful.

The Times notes one of the reasons the ex-president opted not to attend the debate is that "he doesn't want to risk his giant lead in a Republican race that some close to him believe he must win to stay out of prison."

Furthermore, according to the report, "Trump's relationship with Fox — a long-running saga that has been both lucrative and, more recently, extremely costly for the network — is the other issue that looms large in his thinking about the debate, people close to him said."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Jared Kushner, Donald Trump

Financial Analyst Exposes Kushner's Unprecedented Saudi Grift

During Monday's segment of MSNBC's Morning Joe, economic analyst Steve Rattner left panelists astounded after providing an in-depth look into the root of ex-President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner's "$3.1 billion cash haul."

Rattner shared a chart displaying a breakdown of the sources of Kushner's money via Twitter Monday, writing, "Jared Kushner spent much of his White House tenure cozying up to MBS [Mortgage-Backed Securities] & Saudi Arabia. Six months after leaving Washington, his private equity firm landed $2 billion in investments from the Saudi sovereign wealth fund."

During the show segment, MSNBC host Jonathan Lemire noted how Kushner's "background in real estate" does not exactly qualify him "as a hedge fund magnate or peace broker in the Middle East."

"You're right, Jonathan. Jared Kushner did work in the White House," Rattner said. "He worked very hard. It's becoming less clear what he worked hard at, because after he left the White House, he went out and raised $3.1 billion -- that's billion with a 'b' -- for a private equity fund and he's not a private equity guy, he is a real estate guy. So where does the money come from? Some of it we know from filing. Some from press reports.What we know for a fact is that he raised $3.1 billion and only about $30 million of it actually came from investors in the United States all the rest of it is foreign money. And of that foreign money, $2 billion came from the Saudis."

The analyst emphasized, "I've been in this business 40 years. I've never seen somebody get two-thirds of their money from a single investor. Usually a single investor might be a few percent of the fund, might be 5 percent, occasionally 10 percent — I've never seen this. Another $200 million we believe came from Qatar and another $200 million from the United Arab Emirates and then the $625 million from foreign investors that we don't even know who they are. So what was Jared Kushner doing in the White House? And, by the way as a fun fact, on January 6, the famous January 6, Jared Kushner was in the Middle East."

Morning Joe panelist Elise Jordan then asked Rattner, "There's not much out there on how Jared has actually been able to execute his funding. He has all this money, but his background is not in private equity and I've seen only one news report of a small European investment. He's sitting on all this money. Are the Saudis investing with him just to hedge their bets politically in case Trump comes back into office?"

Rattner emphasized, "We haven't seen him do a lot with this money. He has hired some people, I do know that. I've seen nothing else about what he's actually done with the money. It is normal to invest this money over a period of several years, so I don't think we can draw a firm conclusion yet. But, again, we're going back to a guy who's a real estate guy, and frankly not a particularly good one at that, who's suddenly got $3 billion trying to do private equity deals competing against people who've been in this business for a long time. And I wouldn't, if I were the Saudis, count on making a lot of money from this any time soon."

Rattner concluded, "U.S. private equity firms still raise the vast bulk of their money from U.S. investors. This is extraordinary — unprecedented — I've never seen anything like it."

Watch the video at this link.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.


RFK Jr. Says He Backs National Abortion Ban

Conspiracy theorist and 2024 Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr., confirmed Sunday that he would back a national abortion ban after first three months of pregnancy, NBC exclusively reports.

Despite Kennedy's choice to identify as a Democrat, the Democratic hopeful's more conservative opinions have landed him on the radar of Republicans like Florida governor and 2024 Republican candidate Ron DeSantis.

DeSantis, who passed a six-week abortion ban in the Sunshine State this year, has said he would consider appointing Kennedy to lead either the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) if elected president.

During an NBC News interview at the Iowa State Fair Sunday, Kennedy said, "I believe a decision to abort a child should be up to the women during the first three months of life. Once a child is viable, outside the womb, I think then the state has an interest in protecting the child. I'm for medical freedom. Individuals are able to make their own choices."

NBC reports that when the presidential hopeful was "pressed" further on the matter, he confirmed that he would sign "a federal ban at 15 or 21 weeks."

The New Republicreports, "An overwhelming majority of Americans—62 percent, to be exact—still think abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to the Pew Research Center. What's more, people consistently vote in favor of increasing abortion rights protections."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Ron DeSantis

DeSantis: Trump's Election Fraud Claims 'Didn't Prove To Be True'

Gov. Ron DeSantis, during a Friday appearance in Iowa, said ex-President Donald Trump's 2020 election conspiracy theories "did not prove to be true," Politico reports.

The Florida Republican, who is running for the 2024 Republican nomination for president against Trump, "has often redirected the conversation" when asked about his thoughts on his opponent's 2020 election fraud claims.

This time, he told a reporter, "I've said many times the election is what it is. All those theories that were put out did not prove to be true."

The GOP leader suggested "the 2020 election was not 'conducted the way I think that we want to, but that's different than saying 'Maduro stole votes,' or something like that," according to Politico, referencing Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro as "unsupported allegations made by former Trump attorney Sidney Powell after the election," who "baselessly linked late Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez as the creator behind certain voting machines."

Politico further notes that "Despite admitting to not having read the indictment, DeSantis posted on X, previously known as Twitter, advocating for changes to 'end the weaponization of government' and grant Americans the ability to transfer cases to their home districts. Those proposed reforms align with Trump’s assertion that a fair trial in Washington would not have been possible."

Despite calling Trump's election theories untrue, the governor believes "Washington, D.C., is a 'swamp' and it is unfair to have to stand trial before a jury that is reflective of the swamp mentality."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Richard Hanania

How A Young Race-Baiting Writer Rose To Conservative Stardom

In an exclusive report published by HuffPost Friday, the news outlet details the rise of right-wing writer, Richard Hanania, who wrote under the pen name "Richard Hoste" for years before gaining support from prominent Republicans and billionaires to become the widely sought after conservative "national mainstream media" personalty he is today.

HuffPost found the "alt-right" writer, more than a decade ago, had work published in "antisemitic outlets like The Occidental Observer, a site that once argued Jews are trying to exterminate white Americans," and "was among the first writers to be recruited for AlternativeRight.com, a new webzine spearheaded and edited by Richard Spencer, the white supremacist leader who later organized the deadly 2017 neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia."

Both The Washington Post and The New York Times published "Richard Hoste's" work, according to the news outlet.

As a blogger in 2009, Hanania made assertions like "Fat people not only are disgusting to look at; their obesity reflects some ugly personality traits," and "Women simply didn't evolve to be the decision makers in society. Women's liberation = the end of human civilization."

Furthermore, the far-right writer, describing himself as a "race realist," focused much of his work on Black people, as "he lamented what he saw as the growing preponderance of 'miscegenation,' or white and Black people dating each other," writing, "For the white gene pool to be created millions had to die. Race mixing is like destroying a unique species or piece of art. It's shameful."

HuffPost reports, "For Hoste, white people were 'naturally smarter and less criminal' than Black people; white women's 'fear of black men' was 'very far from irrational'; whites had better 'modes of moral reasoning'; and Black people had 'low intelligence and impulse control.'"

HuffPost reports:

HuffPost connected Hanania to his 'Richard Hoste' persona by analyzing leaked data from an online comment-hosting service that showed him using three of his email addresses to create usernames on white supremacist sites. A racist blog maintained by Hoste was also registered to an address in Hanania's hometown. And HuffPost found biographical information shared by Hoste that aligned with Hanania's own life.

The right-winger, who Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) has considered a "friend" and "really interesting thinker," has since become a prominent podcaster and leader of the think tank, Center for the Study of Partisanship and Ideology, which according to journalist Jonathan Katz, "describes itself as 'interested in funding scholars studying woke attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.'"

HuffPost notes:

Richard Hanania's story may hint at a concerning shift in mainstream American conservatism. A little over a decade ago, he felt compelled to hide his racist views behind a pseudonym. In 2023, Hanania is a right-wing star, championed by some of the country's wealthiest men, even as he's sounding more and more like his former white supremacist nom de plume: Richard Hoste.

The news outlet reports "Marc Andreessen — the powerful Silicon Valley venture capitalist and billionaire, and a buddy of Elon Musk — has appeared on CSPI's podcast, hosted by Hanania, three times," as well as "Amy Wax, the University of Pennsylvania professor facing disciplinary proceedings for, among other alleged offenses, inviting a white supremacist to speak to her class and making racist remarks such as that 'our country will be better off with more whites and fewer minorities.'"

HuffPost emphasizes:

Hanania's rise into mainstream conservative and even more centrist circles did not necessarily occur because he abandoned some of the noxious arguments he made under the pseudonym 'Richard Hoste.' Although he's moderated his words to some extent, Hanania still makes explicitly racist statements under his real name. He maintains a creepy obsession with so-called race science, arguing that Black people are inherently more prone to violent crime than white people. He often writes in support of a well-known racist and a Holocaust denier. And he once said that if he owned Twitter — the platform that catapulted him to some celebrity — he wouldn't let 'feminists, trans activists or socialists' post there. 'Why would I?' he asked. 'They're wrong about everything and bad for society.'

The news outlet notes one of Hanania's "first viral pieces on Substack — a 2021 article titled 'Why Is Everything Liberal?' — was cited by columnists at The Washington Post and The New York Times," leading "to his first invitation to appear on 'Tucker Carlson Tonight,' America's most-watched cable news show at the time."

Furthermore, though The Washington Post did not comment on the conservative's previously published work, HuffPost reports "a New York Times spokesperson said that 'Hanania didn’t inform our editors or anyone at The Times, nor were we aware' of any writing he'd done under a pseudonym before the paper published one of his essays."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Tommy Tuberville

Retired Marine General Says Tuberville 'Is A Coward'

Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) continues to catch heat from lawmakers, prominent veterans and even President Joe Biden for his persistence in blocking military promotions over his disagreement with a healthcare policy that could help with abortion-related expenses.

According to a July 28 Rolling Stone report, the Republican senator was called a "coward" by retired two-star Marine Corps Major General Arnold Punaro during a recent Politico interview.

The ex-Armed Services Committee director said, "I have a huge problem with what Sen. Tuberville is doing. He's a coward, in my book. He won't even bring an amendment to the floor and get it voted on to change the [abortion] policy. It is having an impact. And unfortunately, the only way you can ever prove it to somebody like Sen. Tuberville — who's never served […] you're not going to really be able to prove it to anybody until young Marines and young soldiers die in combat because they're not as well led."

Rolling Stone notes the Marines are without "a commanding officer for the first time in over 150 years because of Tuberville's blockade, which Punaro described as a 'pathetic' push to prioritize fundraising over national security."

Punaro's staunch criticism of the senator comes after United States Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin recently urged Tuberville "to end his blockade of military appointments because he disagrees with the military's policy of providing servicemembers with medical packages that include assistance for abortion-related expenses."

The GOP leader was also recently lambasted by Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), who said service members "have sacrificed their entire adult lives. They have sacrificed time with their family. They have sacrificed everything for this country, and now they've been promoted and the senator —or they've been put on a list to be promoted — and the Senator for Alabama has put a hold on them, which has never happened before in the history of the United States."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Michael Flynn

Smartmatic Subpoenas Bannon And Flynn In Lawsuit Against Fox News

Smartmatic, the voting technology company suing Fox News and Newsmax for pushing 2020 election lies, subpoenaed former President Donald Trump's ex-staffers, Michael Flynn and Steve Bannon, CNN reports.

Earlier this year, after Dominion Voting Systems settled its its defamation lawsuit with the right-wing network in for $787.5 million, The New York Times reported the company said, "Dominion's litigation exposed some of the misconduct and damage caused by Fox's disinformation campaign. Smartmatic will expose the rest."

Reuters reports:

Bannon and Flynn, both of whom have faced their own legal woes, were two of the most vocal boosters of Trump's false claims that the 2020 U.S. election was stolen from him through widespread voting fraud, and they could have information on the spread of these claims that might help Smartmatic in the litigation.

"Court filings made public last week in New York and Delaware," according to CNN, reveal the pair received the subpoenas, ordering them to "sit for depositions and answer questions under oath."

Additionally, CNN notes, "Bannon is also required to turn over subpoenaed documents to Smartmatic, including any communications with top officials from Fox News, the Trump campaign and the Trump administration about the 2020 presidential election, according to court filings."

Smartmatic, Reuters reports, "is seeking a total of $2.7 billion in damages across five cases, including against Fox, several of its hosts and former Trump lawyers."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.


'Bannon's Meat Puppet': RFK Jr. Torched For Blaming Ukrainian Deaths On US

Widely known for his anti-vaccination conspiracy theories, 2024 Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., recently suggested Russia is not responsible for the deaths of Ukrainian youth, despite the country's invasion on Ukraine last year.

Son of former U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy and nephew of former President John F. Kennedy — the presidential hopeful tweeted Friday, "Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian youth have already died because America's foreign policy establishment manipulated their country into war to fulfill vain + futile geopolitical fantasy. Now, rather than acknowledge failure, Biden admin prepares to sacrifice American lives too."

Kennedy continued, "Meanwhile, our cities decay, our infrastructure falls apart, our middle class hollows out, crime soars, chronic disease and addiction run rampant. We can heal all of this if we try. But not if we pour our resources into foreign adventures. Biden has lost his way. He is out of touch with the real needs and priorities of the American people. Do you care more about global military dominance, or would you like to rebuild our prosperity from the inside out? #Kennedy24"

The conspiracy theorist was met with staunch criticism from several journalists, political strategists and experts Saturday morning.

Mehdi Hasan commented: "Even if you believe America or NATO 'provoked’ the Russian invasion, to blame the deaths of innocent Ukrainians on anyone else but the Russians who are actually *killing them* is beyond dishonest. Notice that RFK Jr. can't even bring himself to mention Russia here. Not one word."

Political strategist and New York Times bestselling author Rick Wilson said: "You're Steve Bannon's meat puppet."

National Security Foreign Policy reporter Mark Toth replied: "What an utter dunce @RobertKennedyJr has become. Gone are any remnants of his uncle's statesmanship. ^ #Putin's puppeteering on full display. If JFK were alive, he'd be saying something like, 'Ask not what liberty can do for you, but what you can do for liberty in #Ukraine.'"

Eugene Freedman, counsel to the president of National Air Traffic Controllers Association, added: "This guy is a dangerous threat to the free world. If he thinks Ukraine did anything to deserve being invaded by Russia he's actually insane. If he's doing this as an act, he's even more dangerous."

Former congressman Joe Walsh said: "Shame on you. I'm so f***ing sick & tired of u blaming America bcuz RUSSIA invaded a sovereign nation. Ukrainians have died defending their country. Ukrainians have died bcuz RUSSIA killed them. Not us. RUSSIA. RUSSIA has targeted civilians & committed war crimes. Shame on u."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Donald Trump

Special Counsel Focused On December 2020 Trump Coup Meeting

Special Counsel Jack Smith and Justice Department prosecutors are deeply interested in a 2020 Oval Office meeting involving former President Donald Trump and GOP officials as the DOJ continues to investigate January 6, CNN exclusively reports.

DOJ prosecutors, according to the report, "have specifically inquired about three outside Trump advisers who participated in the meeting: former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell, one-time national security adviser Michael Flynn and former Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne, sources said."

Per CNN, the "heated" December 18, 2020 meeting involved "outside advisers" verbally feuding "with top West Wing attorneys over a plan to have the military seize voting machines in crucial states that Trump had lost," as well as discussions around appointing Sidney Powell as special counsel to investigate supposed voter fraud, and Trump invoking martial law as part of his efforts to overturn the election."

Aside from the December 18 meeting, the report notes December 14 as another date of interest for prosecutors, because "on that day, slates of alternate Republican electors in seven battleground states signed certificates falsely asserting Trump had won," while "members of the Electoral College met in all 50 states to officially cast their ballots, declaring Joe Biden the winner with 306 electoral votes to Trump's 232."

CNN notes:

Multiple sources told CNN that investigators have asked several witnesses before the grand jury and during interviews about the meeting, which happened about six weeks after Donald Trump lost the 2020 election. Some witnesses were asked about the meeting months ago, while several others have faced questions about it more recently, including Rudy Giuliani.

According to the report, the evening of the meeting "ended with Trump tweeting that a coming gathering in Washington, DC, on January 6, 2021, to protest the election results 'will be wild.'"

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Marjorie Taylor Greene

'Won't Be Here Long': Republicans Fear 2024 Impact Of Extremist Agenda

House Republicans are struggling to see eye-to-eye how to approach the issues that matter most to their voter base, The Washington Post reports.

Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)'s days-long battle for his title earlier this year clearly displayed the divide among many House GOP members and their more far-right-leaning colleagues.

Most recently, attempts by Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Lauren Boebert (R-CO) to impeach President Joe Biden were rejected by McCarthy and other House Republicans.

According to thePost, "Vulnerable lawmakers have privately raised concerns that these efforts are a distraction and deviate from their constituents' wishes for them to work on implementing policy."

The Post also notes:

The House's focus on the far-right's demands over the past month has irritated Republicans who represent swing districts or are worried that an extreme legislative agenda will push voters away and hand the House majority to Democrats in 2024. So they are learning to flex their procedural muscles, largely behind the scenes, to keep some proposals they see as most damaging off the House floor.

Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.) emphasized if the far-right members continue to push for legislation most lawmakers view as "a distraction," then "we're going to have to come up with a different role with Democrats," adding, "We're going to have to work around these guys."

The Post reports:

A growing fear among many Republicans is that Freedom Caucus members will force a government shutdown over spending cuts — a position some have publicly taken. While pragmatic lawmakers would vote to fund the government, reopening it might mean relying on Democrats again, a position that irked the far-right during the debt ceiling fight and caused them to again go after McCarthy.

Rep. David Joyce (R-OH), a staunch supporter of McCarthy, said he told a Freedom Caucus lawmaker, "At the end of the day, if you don't want to vote" collectively on an issue, "that's fine," adding, "But do not get up and say that no Republicans should vote for this. There are 435 districts. You don't control any of them but the one you were elected in."

He emphasized, "We're not actively trying to side with Democrats. We're just trying to do what's right for our district."

Likewise, Rep. David G. Valadao (R-CA) lamented, "We're always put in these difficult positions. Sometimes we're making the base of our party unhappy because we're not following exactly what they want us to do, but when you look at what the average American, and especially those of us who need independent voters, we are usually closer in line with what they want us to do."

Rep. Marc J. Molinaro (R-NY) said, "We have the majority because we all created the relationship with our districts to earn the right to be here, which, by the way, means that we all have the right to have our voices and our constituents' voices heard. There's a lot more effort among the pragmatic members, if you will, to be sure that we're talking more effectively with the Freedom Caucus members and that we're all having this dialogue."

Similarly, freshman Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (R-OR) added, "If we don't go back to the reason that we were elected, we won't be here for very long, because if people don't feel at home that you're getting what you promised or what they thought you were listening to, they're going to go start looking for somebody else."

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.