The Justice Department has slapped Texas with another lawsuit as the Biden administration does what it can to protect free and fair elections—which, absent new legislation to block Republicans from stripping democracy for parts, is not a whole heck of a lot.
* Weeks after suing Texas over its new voter-suppression law, the Justice Department has filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging that GOP state lawmakers violated the Voting Rights Act ([link removed]) when they (once again) approved new congressional- and state-legislature districts that “diluted the voting strength” of Latino and Black Texans. If Congress would just restore the parts of the Voting Rights Act that required historically discriminatory states to run new election changes by the Justice Department before enacting them, Attorney General Merrick Garland pointed out on Monday, voting rights wouldn’t still be at the mercy of slow-moving court battles.
* Alas, discriminatory redistricting isn’t the only battleground. In Wisconsin, Republican lawmakers (who have gerrymandered themselves into minority rule) have joined forces with a Trump-allied group ([link removed]) as they look for a way to bypass Gov. Tony Evers (D-WI) and wrest control of state elections. Their potential strategy is similar to one already in the works in Michigan: Collect signatures for a ballot measure that would amend the state constitution with new restrictive voting rules, in a veto-proof overhaul of the way Wisconsin elections are run.
* A DOJ lawsuit here and there is just no match for the all-out assault on democracy underway. If you thought Barton Gellman’s 2020 warning about GOP election subversion ([link removed]) was a fun read, you’ll be absolutely tickled by his comprehensive new sequel ([link removed]) , Everything Is Much More Fucked. “In nearly every battle space of the war to control the count of the next election—statehouses, state election authorities, courthouses, Congress, and the Republican Party apparatus—Trump’s position has improved since a year ago.”
In one battle space, at least, key Democrats are coalescing around a plan.
* Members of the House January 6 committee have joined the push to rewrite the Electoral Count Act of 1887 ([link removed]) , the poorly written law that Trump’s team tried to use to throw out the 2020 election results on January 6. It’s not clear whether there would be 10 GOP votes for a bill like that in the Senate (lol), but an overhaul does have the backing of outside conservative groups, and would close off one major avenue in the next attempt to steal a presidential election.
* Meanwhile, it appears some high-level January 6 witnesses have been lying their faces off. Former Washington, DC, National Guard official Col. Earl Matthews this month sent the committee a 36-page memo ([link removed]) accusing two senior Army leaders of perjuring themselves in their congressional testimony about the military’s response to the insurrection. Matthews called Gen. Charles Flynn (brother of Michael Flynn) and Lt. Gen. Walter Piatt “absolute and unmitigated liars” for deceiving Congress about how they delayed the deployment of the National Guard, and said that the Pentagon inspector general’s report on Army leadership’s response to the attack was riddled with errors.
While federal lawsuits against racist redistricting are welcome news, Democrats can’t rely on courts stacked with right-wing judges to protect democratic institutions. An all-out press to abolish the filibuster and pass new democracy protections is the only proportional response; anything less means sleepwalking into a crisis.
Before you say goodbye to whatever 2021 was, join us tomorrow night for one final livestream send off. What A Year! Join Pod Save America’s Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, Tommy Vietor, and Dan Pfeiffer, plus Crooked hosts Ira Madison III, Louis Virtel, Alyssa Mastromonaco, Jason Concepcion, the WAD squad, and other special guests for sketches, interactive audience games, and holiday carols. What a Year will also be raising money for our No Off Years fund to support voter registration efforts in places where reaching new voters will help make the difference in our ability to maintain majorities in the House and Senate next year. Tune in live for the What a Year livestream tomorrow night at 5pm Pacific, 8pm Eastern! To RSVP, head to crooked.com/whatayear ([link removed]) .
One reason voters might be a little blurry on the fact that Republicans are gleefully ripping democracy apart at the seams: The media really has been inordinately vicious to Joe Biden ([link removed]) . An A.I. analysis looked at more than 200,000 articles from 65 news websites to do a “sentiment analysis” of the coverage that Biden got in the first 11 months of 2021 and the coverage that Trump got in the first 11 months of 2020. After an early honeymoon period, Biden’s media coverage over the past four months has been as negative—and in August more negative—than Trump’s coverage over the same span of last year. Considering that last year Trump was presiding over a catastrophic pandemic response, personally exposing more than 500 people ([link removed]) after secretly testing positive, embracing
political and racist violence, and frantically trying to steal an election, that finding suggests the press just might be part of the problem.
* The Biden administration has announced a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics ([link removed]) over the ongoing Uyghur genocide and China’s other human-rights abuses.
* New York City will impose a sweeping vaccine mandate on all private-sector employers ([link removed]) , with no option for workers to get regularly tested instead.
* Former Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) announced he’s running for Georgia governor ([link removed]) , while blaming Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) for losing Georgia’s GOP Senate seats by refusing to play along with the Big Lie.
* Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) will retire from Congress at the end of this month ([link removed]) to become CEO of Donald Trump’s new social media company, which will presumably balance a total welcoming of hate speech with a no-tolerance policy for satire accounts that make fun of Devin Nunes.
* CNN fired Chris Cuomo on Saturday ([link removed]) , after a lawyer for a former colleague at another network accused him of sexual misconduct, on top of all of his journalistic misconduct.
* A military-controlled court in Myanmar found deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi guilty of the first fake charges against her ([link removed]) . She faces two years in jail after the country’s military reduced her four-year sentence.
* Sydney Powell’s group Defending The Republic raised more than $14 million off of election lies ([link removed]) .
* Former Sen. Bob Dole (R-KS), whose unapologetic support for Donald Trump has been generously omitted from most tributes, died on Sunday at age 98 ([link removed]) .
* Fred Hiatt, editor of the Washington Post’s editorial page, has died at 66 ([link removed]) .
* Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit died of an apparent heart attack ([link removed]) following a workout at Santa Anita on Monday.
* The British Parliament is reportedly lousy with cocaine ([link removed]) , or as they call it in the U.K., "coucaine."
A growing chorus of Israeli officials now admits that breaking the Iran nuclear deal was not the smartest idea ol’ Donnie Trump ever had ([link removed]) . Until recently, former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s stranglehold on power and total support for Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal had stifled any public Israeli debate on the matter—in spite of that strategy’s proven failure to force Iran into accepting a better deal. Over the last few months, an increasing number of Israel officials (many of them retiring) have openly criticized Netanyahu’s Iran policy, and acknowledged that the JCPOA was better than nothing. That doesn’t exactly mean the new government is changing course; Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has been repeating old talking points as he rails against Biden administration efforts to bring back the deal. But it’s the beginning of a public reckoning over a major mistake that only made Iran’s nuclear
If you have investments, odds are high that your money has been winding up in places you would never put it on purpose. Places like Mitch McConnell’s campaign coffers. Here’s the problem: A lot of Americans own S&P 500 index funds—these are funds made up of the 500 largest U.S. publicly traded companies available, and they collectively contain over $1.5 trillion dollars ([link removed]) of Americans’ retirement money.
Unfortunately, when you buy an S&P 500 index fund, you’re buying stock in the following companies:
* AT&T, which is already back supporting the election objectors in Congress, as well as the GOP sponsors of Texas’s abortion ban and voter-suppression law. It’s also a top donor to Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham.
* ExxonMobil, which has misled the public about the dangers of climate change and spent huge amounts on Facebook ads to get Donald Trump reelected in 2020.
* Halliburton, one of the nation’s biggest defense contractors, which has funneled millions to the GOP.
* Lockheed Martin, which is one the largest weapons manufacturers in the world and one of Lindsey Graham’s top contributors.
The list goes on. But before you stuff all of your savings in your mattress and call it a day, you should know about DEMZ.
DEMZ ([link removed]) is the first investment product that allows you to get similar performance and exposure you would expect from the S&P 500, without all the Mitch McConnell. It only includes companies who have made over 75% of their political contributions to Democratic causes and candidates. Since launching in November of 2020, DEMZ has outperformed the S&P 500 by 7 percent.
You can finally put your money where your vote is, even on Wall Street. Look for the DEMZ ticker wherever you invest, or
visit DEMZ.fund to learn more ([link removed]) .
Nearly 1.3 million Georgians ([link removed]) have registered to vote since Stacey Abrams’s first gubernatorial run in 2018, 47 percent of them people of color and 43 percent of them under age 30.
A self-administered test ([link removed]) for signs of dementia may help doctors diagnose Alzheimer’s patients months earlier.
New York City’s two supervised injection sites ([link removed]) have reversed nine overdoses since opening less than a week ago.
Early reports ([link removed]) continue to suggest that Omicron may be less dangerous than Delta, according to Anthony Fauci.