The House has a speaker
After three weeks of futility, Republicans finally got themselves a speaker—full-on MAGA acolyte Rep. Mike Johnson of Louisiana. The unanimous vote spoke to the GOP’s hard reality: If they hadn’t chosen Johnson, the only other path forward was working with Democrats on a power-sharing agreement, and no Republican, not even moderates in districts that Joe Biden won in 2020, could stomach that. Instead, Republicans now have to defend a virulently anti-abortion, anti-LGBTQ+, anti-democracy, election-denying insurgent. What were the two issues that drove dramatic Democratic victories in 2022? Abortion and democracy. Along with Donald Trump, Republicans sure do know how to double down on the things America most hates about them.
That’s not all. Johnson is god-awful on just about every single issue, so check out this story for all the gory details. Chaos agents Steve Bannon and Rep. Matt Gaetz are, understandably, excited. Still, Republicans are in no mood to defend Johnson’s record, literally booing when the press asked questions about his efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election … at a press conference.
Currently, 18 House Republicans hold seats won by President Joe Biden in 2020. Their votes for Johnson will be an albatross around their neck in a presidential election year, making the GOP’s effort to retain the chamber an uphill climb. At the very least, though, we can stop hearing ridiculous takes, like that of the Washington Post, demanding that Democrats help Republicans elect a reactionary speaker that stands against everything we hold dear. It’s no surprise that Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene enthusiastically supported Johnson, on the same day that she said on Fox Business that voting rights was “completely against what we stand for.”
Trump throws hissy fit in court, storms out
Donald Trump was back in New York for a second day of testimony from former fix/attorney Michael Cohen in the civil fraud trial against the Trump Organization, and it was a wild day. Donald Trump violated the gag order during the morning recess, and Judge Engoron was incredulous, keeping him and his defense team in a closed courtroom after dismissing observers. After handing out a measly $10,000 fine, the judge said, “Don’t do it again, or it will be worse.” Trump, of course, is sure to do it again. Trump’s defense team did seem to make headway by getting Cohen to contradict some of his prior testimony, before trying to clear it up later in the day. Daily Kos had live coverage throughout the day, so check out the blow-by-blow action, including the moment that Trump angrily stormed out of the courtroom during the cross-examination of Cohen.
Trump’s court whisperer had a state judicial strategy. Its full extent only became clear years later
Conservatives have had a clear strategy of taking over the courts, undoing our hard-fought rights. Those efforts are not abating. More terrific reporting from ProPublica.
Republican Pennsylvania Supreme Court candidate is trying to hide extreme views
The Republican candidate for this critically important judicial seat in swing-state Pennsylvania, Carolyn Carluccio, is everything you’d expect of the modern MAGA Republican Party. But she knows she is out of touch, hence attempting to scrub her website.
Lubbock County becomes latest to approve 'abortion travel ban'
The Texas county’s ban would be enforced through private lawsuits filed against the people who “knowingly transport any individual for the purpose of providing or obtaining an elective abortion, regardless of where the elective abortion will occur.” These are the same Republicans walking around pretending that they want the government “out of our business.”
AOC and The Daily Show poke fun at the sad state of Republican affairs
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is just SO good at this!
How North Carolina’s gerrymandered new map targets House Democrats for defeat
The extreme Republican gerrymander of the North Carolina House map is finished, but Democrats can plan for a fairer map—winning four of five Supreme Court races between 2024 and 2028 is a must.
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