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  • TopHatter
    replied
    Trump urged Justice officials to declare election ‘corrupt’

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump urged senior Justice Department officials to declare the 2020 election results “corrupt” in a December phone call, according to handwritten notes from one of the participants in the conversation.

    The notes of the Dec. 27 call, released Friday by the House Oversight Committee, underscore the lengths to which Trump went to try to overturn the results of the election and to elicit the support of law enforcement officials and other government leaders in that effort. Emails released last month show that Trump and his allies in the last weeks of his presidency pressured the Justice Department to investigate unsubstantiated claims of widespread 2020 election fraud, and the department’s inspector general is looking into whether department officials tried to subvert the results.

    “Just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the R. Congressmen,” Trump said at one point to then-Acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, according to notes taken by Richard Donoghue, a senior Justice Department official who was on the call.

    The pressure is all the more notable because just weeks earlier, Trump’s own Attorney General William Barr, had declared that the department had found no evidence of widespread fraud that could have overturned the results.

    The Dec. 27 call took place just days after Barr had resigned, leaving Rosen in charge of the department during a turbulent final weeks of the administration that also included the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol in which pro-Trump loyalists stormed the building as Congress was certifying the election results.

    “These handwritten notes show that President Trump directly instructed our nation’s top law enforcement agency to take steps to overturn a free and fair election in the final days of his presidency,” committee chairman Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a New York Democrat, said in a statement.

    She said the committee had begun scheduling interviews with witnesses. The Justice Department earlier this week authorized six witnesses to appear before the panel, citing the public interest in the “extraordinary events” of those final weeks.

    _____

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  • GVChamp
    replied
    "The US would never do that: we're not that crazy/stupid!" would have a touch of credibility if the US hadn't just spent a generation stomping in Afghanistan to accomplish diddly squat, especially when SecDef under the last superpower withdrawal was VP under the next superpower entry: this isn't "within living memory," this is "basically the same men are in charge."

    21st Century America is quite hubristic, 21st Century Europe similarly so in its own way.

    I also don't see how not taking Crimea is valuable to Russia's strategic situation, not taking it makes it likely makes it EU territory by the 2030s and there's fuck-all Russia can do about that. The situation is entirely reversed now, Crimea is now Russian territory and there is fuck-all Europe can do about it. What exactly is the proposed counter-strategy? 2001-2009 is not viewed as success for Russia, it is viewed as a complete collapse, which it is: Moscow's weakness in the 1990s resulted in the West's solidification in the 2000s.

    I don't know what you think "pulling a Deng" is going to do, because Russia isn't as strong as China, and China took decades to get where it is at. In that time, Russia concedes all relevant strategic areas.

    In this case, whatever, we'll see what happens in 20 years. It's not great, but from Russia's perspective, it sucked to begin with. If your counter is "but it doesn't have to suck, you can partner with us and everything will better," uhhhh...okay...Free Tibet, too, I guess...

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post

    Isn't it amazing how people can be so stupid and blind with a grifter so obvious.
    Siri, what is the political equivalent of von Munchausen's syndrome?

    Leave a comment:


  • statquo
    replied
    It's tough to see where rock bottom is with the state of today's current discourse. Is this what decline looks like from the inside? Anyone with any experience abroad? Help lol

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  • TopHatter
    replied
    Nancy Mace Called Herself a 'New Voice' for the GOP. Then She Pivoted.

    MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. — Rep. Nancy Mace had just delivered the kind of red-meat remarks that would ordinarily thrill the Republican voters in attendance here on a recent sweltering evening, casually comparing liberal Democrats to terrorists — the “Hamas squad,” she called them — and railing against their “socialist” spending plans.

    But asked to give an assessment of her congresswoman, Mara Brockbank, a former leader of the Charleston County Republican Party who previously endorsed Mace, was less than enthusiastic.

    “I didn’t like that she back-stabbed Trump,” Brockbank said. “We have to realize that she got in because of Trump. Even if you do have something against your leaders, keep them to yourself.”

    Brockbank was referring to Mace’s first weeks in office immediately after the Jan. 6 riot, as the stench of tear gas lingered in the halls of the Capitol and some top Republicans were quietly weighing a break with President Donald Trump. Mace, a freshman congresswoman, placed herself at the forefront of a group of Republicans denouncing Trump’s lies of a stolen election that had fueled the assault and appeared to be establishing herself as a compelling new voice urging her party to change its ways.

    But these days, as Republicans in Congress have made it clear that they have no intention of turning against Trump, Mace has quietly backpedaled into the party’s fold. Having once given more than a dozen interviews in a single day to condemn Trump’s corrosive influence on the party, Mace now studiously avoids the subject, rarely if ever mentioning his name and saying it is time for Republicans to “stop fighting with each other in public.”

    After setting herself apart from her party during her first week in office by opposing its effort to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory, Mace has swung back into line. She joined the vast majority of Republicans in voting to oust Rep. Liz Cheney from leadership for denouncing Trump and his election lies. She also voted against forming an independent bipartisan commission to investigate the Capitol riot.

    And rather than continuing to challenge party orthodoxy, Mace has leaned in to the most combative Republican talking points, castigating Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top health official who is a favorite boogeyman of the right, accusing Democrats of forcing critical race theory on children, and publicly feuding with progressives.

    Her pivot helps explain why the Republican Party’s embrace of Trump and his brand of politics is more absolute than ever. It is not only the small but vocal group of hard-right loyalists of the former president who are driving the alliance, but also the scores of rank-and-file Republicans — even those who may disagree with him, as Mace has — who have decided it is too perilous to openly challenge him.

    “She’s a little bit like a new sailor; she tried to get her sea legs, but she’s also looking out over the horizon, and what she saw was a storm coming in from the right,” said Chip Felkel, a veteran Republican strategist in South Carolina. “So she immediately started paddling in another direction. The problem is, is that everything you say and do, there’s a record of it.”

    Mace declined through a spokeswoman to be made available for an interview, but said in a statement that “you can be conservative and you can be a Republican and be pissed off and vocal about what happened on Jan. 6.” (Mace’s most recent statements regarding the Capitol attack have been explanations of why she opposed commissions to investigate it.)

    “You can agree with Donald Trump’s policies and be pissed off about what happened on Jan. 6,” Mace said. “You can think Pelosi is putting on a sideshow with the Jan. 6 commission and still be pissed off about Jan. 6. These things are not mutually exclusive.”

    Mace is facing a particularly difficult political dynamic in her swing district centered in Charleston, which she won narrowly last year when she defeated Joe Cunningham, a Democrat. Her immediate problem is regaining the trust of the rock-ribbed conservatives who make up her base. It is all the more pressing because political observers expect Republicans to try to redraw Mace’s district to become more conservative, and possible primary challengers still have a year to decide whether to throw their hats in the ring.

    Her predicament bubbled below the surface on a recent evening here at a pork-themed “End Washington Waste” reception overlooking the Charleston Harbor and the docked Yorktown, a decommissioned Navy aircraft carrier. Voters signed the hocks of a paper pig urging Democrats to cut extraneous spending from the infrastructure bill and exchanged printed-out “Biden bucks” for cocktails, as some reflected on Mace’s balancing act.

    Francis and Clea Sherman, a married couple who braved the 90-degree heat to attend, praised her for being “unafraid to speak out” and “tackling tough issues.”

    “We absolutely think that is the most horrifying thing — not to ever happen, but certainly one of them,” Clea Sherman said of the Capitol breach, quickly adding that she was just as outraged by racial justice protests around the country that had grown violent. “All those riots that went along in all those cities — they’ve got to stop.”

    Francis Sherman, a Korean War veteran, nodded along. “It was a shame it had to happen,” he said of the Jan. 6 assault, adding that he used to “get very upset” with some of Trump’s remarks.

    But the former president had been effective, he said. “In my whole life I’ve never been able to see someone accomplish so much,” Francis Sherman added, citing low unemployment rates and a strong economy. “The bottom line was, did he get the job done?”

    Penny Ford, a Mount Pleasant resident who attended the event with her husband, Jim Ford, gave a more grudging assessment, explaining that they had winced at Mace’s comments about the former president. Still, she said, the congresswoman was “the best we have at the moment.”

    Penny Ford said they would prefer to be represented by someone like Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio — a staunch Trump loyalist who helped plan the challenge to Biden’s election in the House — or Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas — who led the effort to invalidate it in the Senate — and said they would consider voting against Mace next year “if I had a choice for someone else.”

    The first woman to graduate from the Citadel, Mace based her winning 2020 campaign on her up-from-the-bootstraps biography, detailing her journey from scrappy Waffle House waitress to statehouse representative. She bested Cunningham, who had been the first Democrat to hold the seat in nearly four decades, by just over 1 percentage point.

    On the campaign trail, Mace walked a careful line, balancing her libertarian streak with a more pragmatic approach, playing up a history of “speaking up against members” of her own party and “reaching across the aisle.”

    And in the days after the Jan. 6 attack, she was unsparing in her language. What was necessary, Mace said then, was nothing short of a comprehensive rebuilding of the party. It was a time for Republicans to be honest with their voters, she said: “Regardless of the political consequences, I’m going to tell the truth.”

    She could not stay silent, Mace insisted.

    “This is a moment in history, a turning point where because of my passion for our country, for our Constitution, for the future of my children — I don’t have that option anymore,” she said in an interview the day after the attack. “I can pick up the mantle and try to lead us out of this crisis, or I can sit idly by and watch our country go to waste. And I refuse to do the latter.”

    Less than a week later, her tone abruptly changed. After joining Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., in a bipartisan request to provide congressional staff aides with more resources to cope with the “trauma” of the Jan. 6 attack, she criticized her colleague for recounting how she feared that rioters had broken into her office building.

    “No insurrectionists stormed our hallway,” Mace wrote on Twitter, touching off a heated back-and-forth.

    She then fundraised off the feud, arguing that “the actions of the out-of-control mob who forced their way into the Capitol” were “terrifying” and “immediately condemned by the left and right,” but that “the left,” particularly Ocasio-Cortez, had “run wild because they will never let a crisis go to waste.”

    More recently, when she voted against the formation of the proposed bipartisan Jan. 6 inquiry, Mace called the endeavor a “partisan, duplicate effort by Speaker Pelosi to divide our nation.”

    And after initially refusing to tell reporters whether she voted to oust Cheney, of Wyoming, from her No. 3 leadership post, Mace’s team issued a statement affirming that she had, saying that Republicans “should be working together and not against one another during some of the most serious socialist challenges our nation has ever faced.”

    Mace has, in some ways, retained her independent streak. She verbally slapped down Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., for comparing mask mandates to Nazism. And she has continued to work across the aisle with Democrats on issues like presidential war powers and cybersecurity.

    Her still-frequent appearances on television, though — now mostly on a variety of Fox News shows, as well as the conservative networks OAN and Newsmax — tend to stick to some of the party’s most well-tread political messages. In a recent interview on Fox News, she asserted that strident liberals had seized control of the Democratic Party.

    “They’re in charge,” she said, “which is why we’re seeing what we thought would be a moderate administration take a sharp left turn all of a sudden.”
    __________

    With the iron grip that Trump holds on the Trump Party and their false recitation of recent history, the worst is yet to come.

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  • TopHatter
    replied
    Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post

    Isn't it amazing how people can be so stupid and blind with a grifter so obvious.
    There comes a certain point of no return where they can't admit that they're supporting or defending a colossal piece of shit that doesn't care about them and never did.

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  • tbm3fan
    replied
    Originally posted by TopHatter View Post

    And that my friends, is how you milk a flock of sheep indefinitely
    Isn't it amazing how people can be so stupid and blind with a grifter so obvious.

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  • TopHatter
    replied
    Trump's PAC has spent no money on ballot audits as he pushes his election-fraud claims, but it has funded his flights and other personal expenses, a report says

    A PAC formed to fund Donald Trump's attempt to challenge last year's presidential election result has not spent any money on audits or other election-review measures, The Washington Post reported on Thursday.

    Trump founded the Save America leadership PAC last year as he pushed his "big lie" that the election had been stolen from him as a result of an elaborate plot by Democrats. The PAC, which "has few limits on how it can spend its money," The Post said, has raised $75 million.

    Sources familiar with the PAC's finances told The Post that barely any of the money had been spent, apart from a small portion used for some of Trump's travel and legal expenses and for paying staff.

    The sources said none of the money had been channeled into concrete attempts to challenge last year's election result such as the ballot audit in Arizona's Maricopa County.

    While Trump has issued statements in support of that audit and attempts by other GOP-led legislatures to cast doubt on the integrity of the election, he hasn't used the money from his PAC war chest to support the reviews, the report said.


    The deadline for the PAC to make public its financial statements in compliance with federal laws is July 31.

    A Trump spokesperson did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

    Arizona's audit, which county election officials have characterized as a shambolic partisan stunt, is being funded partly by Arizona taxpayers and partly by private donations. A lawsuit seeking to launch a similar election review in Georgia's Fulton County is also said to be funded by private donations, The Post reported.

    The PAC has continued to fundraise mainly by appealing to donors to fund the campaign to ensure election integrity, The Post reported.

    Trump's election-fraud claims have been thrown out in court cases and twice refused a hearing in the US Supreme Court.

    He has continued to push them, however, despite their role in inciting his supporters to attack the Capitol on January 6 and amid suggestions that he's gearing up for another presidential bid in 2024.

    ________

    And that my friends, is how you milk a flock of sheep indefinitely

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  • Officer of Engineers
    replied
    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    Putin turned Russia into a threatening entity not because Russian power was threatened, but because -his- power was threatened.
    I was thinking about this. Think your timeline is off. George and UKR started consultations about NATO membership before Putin turned on NATO.

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  • astralis
    replied
    What? You forget that Chechnya expanded the war into Russia herself and Georgia struck first. In both cases, it is because they thought Russia was too weak. And you're blaming Putin for turning the tables around?
    I think it's important to note that there was zero sympathy for the Chechens within NATO -- no one lifted a finger when Yeltsin and Putin rampaged around Chechnya. everyone recognized Chechnya as part of the Russian state.

    Georgia in 2008 got a bit more sympathy but we all know what sympathy's worth. Putin essentially had a free hand.

    Russia had fairly significant leeway throughout the 1990s and early 2000s because the US was so invested in the idea of new democratic Russia as a partner, and later on at Russia as a partner against terrorism/and or the PRC.

    Putin turned Russia into a threatening entity not because Russian power was threatened, but because -his- power was threatened.



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  • Officer of Engineers
    replied
    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    I think that's really the crux of it. If Putin hadn't turned Russia into a threatening entity, there would be no discussion of Russia being kicked out of the Crimea nor of a NATO army in Georgia or Ukraine.
    What? You forget that Chechnya expanded the war into Russia herself and Georgia struck first. In both cases, it is because they thought Russia was too weak. And you're blaming Putin for turning the tables around?

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  • astralis
    replied
    Which does not change the fact that Putin could not allow being kicked out of Crimea nor allow a NATO army in Georgia and the UKR even if they are Georgian or Ukrainian troops.
    I think that's really the crux of it. If Putin hadn't turned Russia into a threatening entity, there would be no discussion of Russia being kicked out of the Crimea nor of a NATO army in Georgia or Ukraine.

    And if Putin wasn't paranoid about NATO intentions or wedded to the USSR impulse to have puppet states, then none of the post '89 NATO expansion would have mattered.

    I mean, is Germany still sore at France for taking back Alsace Lorraine? Is France still scared at the prospect of an unified Germany?

    Putin chose confrontation both because he's paranoid and because he wanted to bolster his polling figures. he could have pulled off a mini DXP doing the whole "hide and bide" thing. but, well, he chose otherwise.

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  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Originally posted by TopHatter View Post

    It would be interesting to see if we have the same sealift capacity in 2021 that we had in 1990-1991. Certainly we don't have anything like the same troop numbers.
    We actually leased Russian merchant hulls to help move our forces to Saudi. And 2 of the USNS's 7 SL7 Fast Sealift Ships broke down mid-cruise. You could track the materiel readiness of the 24th ID (now 3rd ID) to the progress of the USNS Antares...why? Because the Main Support Battalion Repair Parts warehouses were aboard. So the Bradleys & M1s made it fine...but they broke down cause of a lack of spare parts.

    It was towed to Rota, Spain, and then the waited for the USNS Altaire to show up coming back from Saudi.

    Now, I will say we have a LOT more prepositioned sets around the globe both on land and afloat...and more vessels able to flex.

    So we beefed up the USNS lift fleet...and have contracts in place for others.

    So while our forces are smaller we are in a pretty good posture regards prepositioned sets of gear.

    Leave a comment:


  • Officer of Engineers
    replied
    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    what I'm telling you is that no one in NATO in their right mind would treat Russia like the Iraqis or the Serbs.
    It's not what we see. It's what they see and they see an enemy. I remind you that even the UKR was on Moscow's side during the Pristina Airport fiasco.

    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    if there's fighting in the Baltics, it would only be happening because Russia has -already rolled in-, so by definition the Russians are already mobilized.
    Not if they're repulsing an attack against Kalingrad.

    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    only a paranoid Russki would think that NATO, which comprises of a coalition of nations that barely fund their own basic defense and where Russia is responsible for 40% of their natural gas imports, poses an offensive threat to a nuclear-armed Russia.
    They're seeing the exact same thing they saw at the Fulda Gap. Pre-positioned stockpiles. A constant presence of rotating NATO brigades, thereby getting around non-permenant forces thing. No defence-in-depth but everything forward deployed, with machine, materials, and war stocks just waiting for the manpower to arrive by air, a spring board into Russia.

    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    again, both Yeltsin and Putin made public noises about being NATO partners and even joining NATO prior to 2004/2008.
    Old story. Even Stalin asked to join NATO but Stalin, Yeltsin, and Putin all knew that we could not allow the Russians in on our military planning against them; never mind the bureaucratic wrench they could throw into our gears.

    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    the "final break" was Ukraine in 2014. I certainly agree that Putin has never trusted NATO to begin with, but the reason for the current hostility that Putin shows towards US/NATO is not because NATO did something that threatened Russia, but rather that the Russian near-abroad has no interest in being partners with Putin.
    Which does not change the fact that Putin could not allow being kicked out of Crimea nor allow a NATO army in Georgia and the UKR even if they are Georgian or Ukrainian troops.

    Originally posted by astralis View Post
    we didn't go begging for the Baltics or Georgia or Ukraine to join NATO; on the contrary, most of NATO don't even want them around if they could help it.
    Oh come on, there is one and only one country responsible. If the US says go, it's a go. If the US says no, it's a no. To put it more bluntly, you can thank Bill Clinton for this mess.
    Last edited by Officer of Engineers; 22 Jul 21,, 03:38.

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  • astralis
    replied
    Are you really serious? The Kuwait War. We went from zero to killing the Iraqi Army in less than 6 months. 4 weeks to prep for the Kosovo War. 8 weeks to relieve Sarajevo. Are you telling me that we're incapable of mobilizing faster than the Russians?
    what I'm telling you is that no one in NATO in their right mind would treat Russia like the Iraqis or the Serbs. if there's fighting in the Baltics, it would only be happening because Russia has -already rolled in-, so by definition the Russians are already mobilized.

    only a paranoid Russki would think that NATO, which comprises of a coalition of nations that barely fund their own basic defense and where Russia is responsible for 40% of their natural gas imports, poses an offensive threat to a nuclear-armed Russia.


    And do you think the Russians would trust us after we told them that we had no intentions of expanding NATO beyond East Germany? We've already clobbered a Russian ally (Serbia). Do you think Putin would be stupid enough to trust our intentions alone? I certainly would not.
    again, both Yeltsin and Putin made public noises about being NATO partners and even joining NATO prior to 2004/2008. the "final break" was Ukraine in 2014. I certainly agree that Putin has never trusted NATO to begin with, but the reason for the current hostility that Putin shows towards US/NATO is not because NATO did something that threatened Russia, but rather that the Russian near-abroad has no interest in being partners with Putin.

    we didn't go begging for the Baltics or Georgia or Ukraine to join NATO; on the contrary, most of NATO don't even want them around if they could help it.

    Leave a comment:

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