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Americans for Prosperity see no future in funding Haley

The Koch-funded conservative PAC Americans for Prosperity announced it will no longer fund former Republican South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s campaign after she finished twenty percentage points behind Donald Trump in the South Carolina primary, warning that a Trump nomination could lead to Democratic Party rule of Congress and the White House after the next election.

“Nikki Haley has shown us again and again that we made the right decision in supporting her candidacy and she continues to have our strong endorsement. She has made it clear that she will continue to fight and we wholeheartedly support her in this effort. But given the challenges in the primary states ahead, we don’t believe any outside group can make a material difference to widen her path to victory,” the group said in an announcement.  “And so while we will continue to endorse her, we will focus our resources where we can make the difference. And that’s the U.S. Senate and House.

“If Donald Trump is at the top of the Republican ticket, the risk of one-party rule by a Democratic Party captured by the Progressive Left is severe and would do irreparable damage to the country. The last 3 election cycles have painted a very clear picture of what we can expect from voters who consistently rejected Donald Trump and his impact on the Republican party brand.”

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Falling in line, Thune endorses Trump after South Carolina win

Jumping on the bandwagon after a decisive primary victory, South Dakota Republican Senator John Thune, the #2 in the GOP Senate conference as the Minority Whip, officially endorsed Donald Trump to be the Republican nominee for president despite facing 91 criminal indictments and more than half a billion dollars in outstanding civil judgments.

Per the Washington Post, Thune gave an exclusive to Fox Digital where he acknowledged in inevitability of Trump’s nomination, saying the South Carolina outcome “[made] clear that Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for president in this year’s pivotal presidential election.”

“The choice before the American people is crystal clear: It’s Donald Trump or Joe Biden,” Thune said. “I support former president Trump’s campaign to win the presidency, and I intend to do everything I can to see that he has a Republican majority in the Senate working with him.”

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Which Biden policy made fast food more expensive?

“Welcome to Joe Biden’s America, where Big Mac extra value meals will run you $18. Yes, you read that right: The iconic burger-fries-soda combo, once a staple for Americans of every socioeconomic stripe, now costs almost 20 smackers in some spots. ‘I’m lovin’ it’? Not likely at these prices. The hikes sure look like they come thanks to painful and persistent inflation driven by President Biden’s terrible economic policies. Those have driven prices overall about 15% higher since Biden came in, on essentials like food and energy, they’re up closer to 25%” wrote the New York Post editorial board on October 31, 2023, lamenting something something Bidenomics for the increase in cost for an American staple. No further explanation was given, nor was it required for the “vibe” the pro-Trump editors of the shitty Manhattan rag were trying to push upon their perpetually angry readers.

This was the tweet, already more than three months old at that point, that the Post were milking, of course not mentioning that it was at a rest stop on I-95 in Connecticut, where the franchisees happily gouge travelers wary of taking exits into unfamiliar environs. They’re still milking it, with the most recent mention of the $18 Big Mac in another editorial from two weeks ago. “When a night out at McDonald’s is now a luxury for many Americans, its obvious why President Biden is getting slammed in polls over his handling of the economy,” they wrote. Again they failed to cite any specific policy, they just pushed the “vibe” that it’s his fault a rest stop is gouging customers.

The problem for folks who care about American democracy is that this kind of shit is effective. In fact we’ll just say outright this is more than anything else the reason literally everything hangs in the precipice in the November presidential election – that fat former President Trump’s lead in the polls, if it is in fact real and not the product of some over-correction in the weighting, is because of consumer dissatisfaction with prices. Even as inflation abates and gas prices have long drifted back down to normal-ish, much of the anger is baked in with a lot of voters. This bell cannot be unrung.

But other bells can be rung louder.

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Axios reports that Trump has a “demographic problem”

Super Beltway insider-y news site Axios, famous for cheerily laundering Republican-friendly messaging to maintain their access, is not so thrilled with how Saturday went for fat former President Trump in South Carolina, that even though he won by 20-ish percent over former Governor Nikki Haley, the exit polls show his GOP coalition “isn’t remotely big enough to win a presidential election. He would need to attract voters who are more diverse, more educated and believe his first loss was legit. South Carolina exit polls show he didn’t do that,” which is, per Axios co-founder Mike Allen, “why some top Republicans are worried about the general election in November, despite Trump’s back-to-back-to-back-to-back wins in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina.”

We’ll maintain that the better test of the Orange God Emperor’s support is going to come during a closed primary – which Dem elections data expert Tom Bonier agreed with on Sunday – but that Axios is going further than we are on this question of what Saturday means is noteworthy. Sure they’re not pointing out that “If Dean Phillips got 40 percent of the vote then it’d be an absolute apocalypse for Joe Biden” like all the Twitter libs are doing (and correctly so because Donald is widely seen as the “quasi-incumbent” in the GOP primary), though this is definitely more coverage of a “warning sign” than we would’ve expected from the guys that brought us Youngkin 2024.

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Matt Gaetz calls out Republican colleague for dating older woman

You could say a lot of things about Matt Gaetz starting a shitposting fight with fellow scumbag Republican Congressman Max Miller, it’s funny and embarrassing for the already ever downward spiraling reputation of the House GOP enough on its own. You can’t say however that it isn’t very much on-brand for Matt Gaetz to be bringing age into this, even if Miller maybe created the opening with the “mommy issues” line. Still, if the credibly alleged domestic assault incident was good enough by itself for George Santos to shit-talk Miller then why wasn’t it enough for Gaetz?

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Jason Galanis on year four of a 15+ year federal prison sentence

“Audrey Strauss, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that JASON GALANIS was sentenced to 189 months in prison for his participation in multiple fraudulent schemes. In particular, GALANIS was sentenced for his role in a scheme to manipulate the market for Gerova Financial Group, Ltd (‘Gerova’), a publicly traded company listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and defrauding the shareholders of that company (the ‘Gerova Scheme’), and for defrauding the clients of an investment advisory firm. GALANIS was also sentenced for his role in a scheme to defraud a Native American tribal entity and the investing public of tens of millions of dollars in connection with the issuance of bonds by the tribal entity (the ‘Tribal Bond Scheme’).”

“GALANIS pled guilty on January 31, 2020, to a seven-count information charging GALANIS with participation in the Gerova and Tribal Bond Schemes. GALANIS was sentenced today by United States District Judge P Kevin Castel. GALANIS had previously been sentenced, in February 2017, for his participation in the Gerova Scheme and, in August 2017, for his participation in the Tribal Bond Scheme, but those convictions were subsequently vacated. Acting US Attorney Audrey Strauss said: ‘Jason Galanis orchestrated two multimillion-dollar fraud schemes, and hid behind a team of co-conspirators to conceal his involvement and defy an SEC ban. He and his codefendants engaged in market manipulation and the defrauding of shareholders, and they stole a large portion of the proceeds of tribal bonds that were intended to fund economic development projects. Now Jason Galanis has been sentenced to a lengthy prison term that reflects the magnitude and pervasiveness of his crimes,'” says a September 24, 2020 Justice Department press release that continues for quite some length about the elaborate securities fraud scheme.

Why does a nearly four year-old Justice Department press release matter now? Well…

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Zelensky says 31,000 Ukrainian troops KIA since invasion

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday told CNN’s Kaitlan Collins that 31,000 troops had been killed defending the country in the two years since Russian dictator Vladimir Putin ordered his legions to invade, the first time any Kyiv official had put a number on the death toll.

Cold comfort to the people affected, but it is significantly lower than the losses suffered by Russia, estimated last month by the BBC to be as high as 107,000 killed in action.

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Black Republican can definitely relate to Trump being indicted

Florida MAGA Congressman Byron Donalds on Sunday told NBC’s Kristen Welker that he agrees with fat former President Trump’s Friday night claim to an audience of Black conservatives that his indictments are “why the Black people like me, because they have been hurt so badly and discriminated against,” with Donalds saying that’s “part of it… This is something similar that Black people have to deal with.” And Donalds has indeed dealt with it, having been twice charged with felonies: once in 1997 for marijuana distribution and then in 2000 for a scheme to defraud a bank.

It’s not clear if racial discrimination was a factor in either of his arrests, but luckily for Donalds he was able to have the first one dropped in a pre-trial diversion and the second expunged.

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MAGA Land thanks God for precious political gift

“Biden must pay for this. He keeps on complaining that it is the Republicans that is preventing the securing of the border. However, he cancelled ALL Trump’s border policies when he entered the office, but did nothing to replace those policies. Under Trump, the border was secured, now, it is a mess, an open door for all criminals into the US” – The current top comment on Fox News’s main front page article “Family of Laken Riley speaks out for first time since daughter’s tragic slaying: ‘Will be missed every day,’” about the murder of a 22 year-old University of Georgia nursing student, the prime suspect Jose Ibarra, a paroled Venezuelan migrant who entered the country in 2022.

This is horrific and Ibarra should be executed if found guilty in a court of law beyond any reasonable doubt. No qualification. Sick animals need to be put down no matter where they come from.

Separate from the crime is the craven reaction to it: MAGA Twitter is not quite wall-to-wall with it yet, but that’s probably only because of limited bandwidth after the South Carolina primary and other stories in a high-volume news cycle. Which is to say we don’t know how much mileage this is going to get outside of the MAGA media ecosystem yet, though it won’t be for lack of trying. The last time a white girl was killed by a migrant in an election year was in 2018 when University of Iowa student Mollie Tibbets was raped and murdered by Mexican farm laborer Cristhian Rivera (employed by a prominent Republican who once ran for state Argiculture Commissioner). So excited was Newt Gingrich that he emailed Axios to tell them “If Mollie Tibbetts is a household name by October, Democrats will be in deep trouble. If we can be blocked by Manafort-Cohen, etc, then GOP could lose [the House] badly.” Then there was some Neo-Nazis who pushed a robocall about her death. Some asshole on The Hill even changed his Disqus name to “Midterms for Mollie” at one point.

One problem for the MAGA kids if they do want to celebrate Laken’s death loudly: Trump signed an order blocking the deportations of Venezuelan migrants on January 19, 2021.

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Federal judge tells Trump tough shit on Carroll judgment

Manhattan federal Judge Lewis Kaplan on Sunday responded “lol, no” to disgraced former President Trump’s nearly-last-minute motion for an “administrative stay” of the $83.3 million judgment the jury in rape victim EJ Carroll’s defamation trial coming due, meaning the fat bastard has just days to pay up or he loses his right to an appeal of the verdict (which is surely just delaying the inevitable too).

“Twenty-five days after the jury verdict in this case, and only shortly before the expiration of Rule 62’s automatic stay of enforcement of the judgment, Mr Trump has moved for an ‘administrative stay’ of enforcement pending the filing and disposition of any post-trial motions that he may file. He seeks that relief without posting any security. The Court declines to grant any stay, much less an unsecured stay, without first having afforded plaintiff a meaningful opportunity to be heard. Plaintiff shall file any response to defendant’s motion no later than 5:00 pm on February 29, 2024. Any reply shall be filed no later than 5:00 pm on March 2, 2024,” Kaplan wrote in his denial.

MSNBC’s Lisa Rubin explains that the timeline above still gives Donald a tiny bit of wiggle room to file one last desperate bid for a stay with both his court and at the appellate level before the final deadline of March 7th. He’d probably be better off using that time to find a suretor though.

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Odysseus did not nail the landing, company says

The Odysseus lander, the first US-built craft to make a controlled landing on the surface of the Moon in more than half a century, technically completed its mission but will be of little use for anything else because it tipped over on landing, the company says.

CNN reports Intuitive Machines, the company that built the lander, said signals indicate the craft floated toward the surface as planned, but as it neared touchdown dropping at six miles per hour and traveling across the surface at 2 mph, the lander’s feet hit a large rock that caused the craft to settle on its side.

While the position of the craft makes communication tougher, the lander settled with a side containing a piece of artwork for a commercial client facing the ground.  The solar panels are powering the unit, its radio equipment works, and many of the experiments on board are already underway, according to the company’s CEO.

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Haley says nation cannot tolerate “Trump’s lack of focus”

Dismissing 91 felony indictments and more than a half-billion dollars in civil penalties (to date) as “Trump’s lack of focus,” former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley didn’t really say much in her self-delusional victory-esque speech other than to say she presents a choice to voters in the upcoming Super Tuesday primary states.

Haley created the traditional Republican dystopian vision of America they create when they’re running against a successful Democratic administration, best characterized by Trump’s “American carnage” inaugural speech.  Haley, however, noted that Trump will be unable to beat Joe Biden in a 2024 rematch because “nearly everyday, Trump drives people away” and his popularity numbers fall.

In the opening section of the speech, Haley described how her immigrant mother was able to cast a ballot for her in Saturday’s primary, something that will likely be featured in MAGA candidates ‘ speeches picking at the Replacement Theory scab to motivate their white nationalists to the polls.

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Trump “big brother Chuck Cunningham”-s Eric, Lara

“First of all, my family:  Melania, Barron, Don Jr. and Kimberly, Ivanka and Jared, Tiffany and Michael, they’re so, so supportive, so supportive of me and we really appreciate it and love them.  We have a great family,” the frontrunner for the Republican Party nomination who forgot another member of his family Donald Trump declares reading off pre-written cards, in a gaffe that would’ve filled new reports for weeks if it was from his future opponent.

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Thomas’s new clerk once sent “I HATE BLACK PEOPLE” text

Crystal Clanton got one of the most prestigious gigs in the country for a law school graduate:  she was one of 36 people each year chosen to clerk for a Supreme Court Justice.  In her case, per the Washington Post, it was for one of her ideological idols, Clarence Thomas.

The fact that she had worked for Turning Point USA, a group supported by Thomas’s insurrectionist wife, Ginni, prior to going to law school could have outweighed what would have likely been uncovered in any basic background check: a 2017 story from her time as field director for Turning Point when she texted a friend a series of racist screeds including one reading, “I HATE BLACK PEOPLE. Like fuck them all … I hate blacks. End of story.”

Clanton didn’t deny sending the texts, responding to the New Yorker writer’s inquiry by saying, “I have no recollection of these messages and they do not reflect what I believe or who I am and the same was true when I was a teenager.”  She was, however, fired by Turning Point USA withing three days of the article being published, presumably because the group prefers its racism less overt.

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Trump wins South Carolina Republican primary

Disgraced former President Trump has defeated former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley in the Palmetto State’s Republican primary, National Zero projects with 0 percent of precincts reporting to our non-existent decision desk. Just call it a hunch that the fat bastard won the primary.

We’ll update this article with the actual results. In the meantime here’s some of the exit poll results, even though exit polls are mostly useless: Per MSNBC, 32 percent say Trump is unfit for office if convicted of a crime. CNN found about 2/3rds saying Biden was not legitimately elected.

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RNC circulating anti-Trump legal fees resolution

“WHEREAS, the Republican National Committee raises many millions of dollars each year with the singular purpose of electing Republican candidates across the country; WHEREAS, the RNC spends tens of millions of dollars to help ensure free and fair elections; WHEREAS, the Republican National Committee should focus its spending on political efforts associated with winning elections and make clear from this point forward that the RNC’s financial resources are to be used to assist candidates across the country winning elections in 2024,” says a resolution by Mississippi RNC member Henry Barbour, to be considered at their meeting next month, obtained by the Dispatch on Saturday.

Continued: “WHEREAS, spending any RNC financial resources for any candidate’s personal, business, or political legal expenses, not related to the 2024 election cycle, does not serve the RNC’s primary mission of helping to elect our candidates in 2024; therefore, be it RESOLVED, that the Republican National Committee will not pay the legal bills of any of our candidates for any federal or state office, but will focus our spending on efforts directly related to the 2024 election.”

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US, UK undertake new round of attacks in Yemen

American and British forces attacked 18 Houthi rebel encampments in Yemen in the continued campaign to stop attacks on military and commercial shipping in the Red Sea, with missiles fired from US Navy ships in the region as well as a British Akrotiri air base in Cyprus, the Guardian reports.

The militaries of the United States and United Kingdom, with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands, and New Zealand, conducted an additional round of strikes against several targets in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen,” US military officials in the region said in a statement. “These precision strikes are intended to disrupt and degrade the capabilities that the Houthis use to threaten global trade, naval vessels, and the lives of innocent mariners in one of the world’s most critical waterways.  The Houthis’ now more than 45 attacks on commercial and naval vessels since mid-November constitute a threat to the global economy, as well as regional security and stability, and demand an international response.”

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“An incompetent, anti-Black tyrant”

“The audacity of Donald Trump to speak to a room full of Black voters during Black History Month as if he isn’t the proud poster boy for modern racism. This is the same man who falsely accused the Central Park 5, questioned George Floyd’s humanity, compared his own impeachment trial to being lynched, and ensured the unemployment gap for Black workers spiked during his presidency.”

“Donald Trump has been showing Black Americans his true colors for years: An incompetent, anti-Black tyrant who holds us to such low regard that he publicly dined with white nationalists a week after declaring his 2024 candidacy. Come November, no matter how many disingenuous voter engagement events he attends, Black Americans will show Donald Trump we know exactly who he is,” writes Biden Campaign Black Media Director Jasmine Harris in a statement ripping the fat fuck.

It was a direct response to Trump telling a Black conservative group on Saturday that his 91 felony charges in four jurisdictions are “why the Black people like me, because they have been hurt so badly and discriminated against. And they actually viewed me as – I’m being discriminated against. It’s been pretty amazing.” He should really start selling “Orange Lives Matter” t-shirts.

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Report: There’s a GOP primary election in South Carolina

Various political news media reports on Saturday indicate that, as of this writing, there is in fact voting underway in a Republican primary election in South Carolina. Though this primary election will determine the GOP candidates for a number of different offices, most of the attention appears to be directed at the top of the ticket, the former governor of the Palmetto State Nikki Haley and the twice-impeached and four times-indicted 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump, facing each other for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. However since Trump is widely expected to defeat Haley by a margin possibly even well north of 50 or even 60 percent, the primary election is effectively a perfunctory exercise. But what the hell, why not just do it anyway.

Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

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