Armed protests are expected to take place in all 50 state capitals next week, warned the FBI in a bulletin sent to cops nationwide.
“The FBI received information about an identified armed group intending to travel to Washington, DC on 16 January,” adds the memo. “They have warned that if Congress attempts to remove POTUS via the 25th Amendment, a huge uprising will occur.
House Democrats moved forward with impeachment efforts this week after Vice President Mike Pence refused to invoke the 25th Amendment. The impeachment effort – clearly designed to prevent Trump from running for office in 2024 – is guaranteed to exacerbate political tensions.
The protests are expected to begin late this week and continue through President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20th.
FBI agents expect extremists to take advantage of the chaos to wreak havoc – just as they did during the protests following the death of George Floyd. We can expect Antifa and China to play a role.
“We’re keeping a look across the entire country to make sure that we’re monitoring, and that our Guards in every state are in close coordination with their local law enforcement agencies to provide any support requested,” said Army General Daniel Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau.
On December 29th, the FBI issued a warning about the potential of armed protestors targeting lawmakers at the US Capitol. The agency is currently reviewing nearly 45,000 tips on expected violence related to the presidential transition.
President Trump was locked out of his own Twitter account Wednesday after his supporters stormed into the Capitol Building in a last-ditch effort to prevent lawmakers from ratifying Joe Biden’s victory.
Twitter went on to delete a one-minute video address Trump posted to the site as well as a statement blaming the chaos on election fraud. Twitter said the posts violated its Civil Integrity and Violent Threats policies.
“I know how you feel, but go home and go home in peace. I know you’re in pain. I know you’re hurt,” said Trump in the video. “We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election, and everyone knows it, especially the other side. But you have to go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order. We have to respect our great people in law and order. We don’t want anybody hurt.”
Facebook and Instagram followed suit, banning the president from his accounts for 24 hours.
“We’ve assessed two policy violations against President Trump’s Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time,” said Facebook.
Lawmakers holding session to count Electoral College votes were interrupted Wednesday morning when a mob of Trump supporters charged into the building.
One protestor – an air force vet – was shot and killed.
Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) responded by activating the DC National Guard and implementing a strict curfew. Bomb-sniffing dogs were called in to search the area after the crowd was cleared.
Officials on both sides of the aisle are blaming President Trump for the siege even though he encouraged the protestors to “go home in peace.”
“What happened here today was an insurrection, incited by the President of the United States,” says Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT). The attack on the Capitol was the result of a “selfish man’s injured pride and the outrage of his supporters whom he has deliberately misinformed for the past two months and stirred to action this very morning.”
Equally surprising here is the fact that protestors were able to get into the Capitol Building.
“There were clearly enormous strategic and planning failures by the Capitol Police, by Sergeant at Arms, and anyone else who was a part of coordinating this effort,” argues Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH). “This is the United States Capitol Building, with the US Congress in session handling the presidential election process.”
“The reinforcements that we thought – that I was told would be in place…There was a strategic breakdown, for sure, and you can bet your ass we are going to get to the bottom of it.”
Ryan says he will meet personally with Capitol Police Chief Steven A. Sund to demand answers. In the meantime, we can expect a lawsuit from President Trump against Facebook and Twitter for violating his First Amendment rights by blocking him from posting to his accounts.
When President Trump signed the year-end spending and pandemic relief packages last week, lawmakers promised to consider his demand to increase the next round of stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000.
House lawmakers approved the increase with a vote of 275-134, with 44 Republicans joining Democrats in support of larger checks.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) rejected the House bill and introduced his own package that offers $2,000 stimulus checks. But it also overturns Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act and sets up a commission to study voter fraud.
President Donald Trump cited his frustrations with Section 230 as one of the reasons he refused to sign the National Defense Authorization Act last week. Congress is expected to override Trump’s veto, though Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has threatened to delay that vote until the Senate agrees on stimulus payments.
Critics have accused McConnell of intentionally blocking the $2,000 checks by crafting legislation designed to fail, though all provisions of his bill are backed by President Trump.
McConnell’s proposal “will not pass the House and cannot become law – any move like this by Senator McConnell would be a blatant attempt to deprive Americans of the $2,000 survival check,” argues Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), who backed a stand-alone vote on stimulus checks.
“Let’s not muddy the waters,” added Sanders. “Are you for $2,000 or are you not…That’s what the American people want to know.”
A handful of GOP Senators said they would support larger checks, but most Republicans are wary to increase the dollar amount of the stimulus package. Boosting stimulus checks t0 $2,000 would add another $463 billion to the $900 billion package. To get a stand-alone vote on stimulus checks through the Senate, 12 Republicans would need to join all Democrats.
Georgia Republican incumbent Senators David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, who face runoff elections on January 5th, both favor larger stimulus checks but haven’t voiced an opinion of McConnell’s proposal. If both Republicans lose, Democrats will gain control of the Senate.
President Trump on Tuesday criticized the COVID relief package lawmakers announced Sunday, demanding they increase stimulus checks to $2,000 (up from $600 specified in the bill).
“Throughout the summer, Democrats cruelly blocked COVID relief legislation in an effort to advance their extreme leftwing agenda and influence the election,” argued Trump in a blistering video posted to Twitter.
“The bill they are now planning to send back to my desk is much different than anticipated. It really is a disgrace…It’s called the COVID relief bill, but it has almost nothing to do with COVID.”
The relief package is tied to a $1.4 trillion spending bill Trump must sign in order to prevent a government shutdown.
Provisions of the bill that Trump opposes include:
- $85.5 million to Cambodia
- $134 million to Burma
- $1.3 billion to Egypt and its military
- $25 million to Pakistan
- $5 million to El Salvador and other Latin American nations
- $7 million for reef fish management
- $3 million for poultry production technology
- $1 billion+ for the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian, and the National Gallery of Art
Even worse, the COVID relief portion offers stimulus checks to the family members of illegal aliens – allowing them to receive over $1,000 each. American workers are offered a mere $600.
“Congress found plenty of money for foreign countries, lobbyists, and special interests, while sending the bare minimum to the American people, who need it. It wasn’t their fault. It was China’s fault,” said Trump, adding that he won’t sign the bill unless lawmakers increase stimulus checks to $2,000, provide more funding for small businesses, and remove the “wasteful and unnecessary items” from the bill.
President Trump’s demands were an unwelcome surprise for lawmakers, many of whom had already left the Capitol for Christmas break.
In response to his demands, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said she would try to increase stimulus checks to $2,000 using a process called “Unanimous Consent” – which can be blocked by a single lawmaker who disagrees.
“Just when you think you have seen it all, last night, the President said that he would possibly veto the bicameral agreement negotiated between Republicans and Democrats,” said Pelosi. “If the President truly wants to join us in $2,000 payments, he should call upon [House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy] to agree to our Unanimous Consent request.”
In the meantime, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has suggested that lawmakers reverse Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act in a bid to convince Trump to sign to COVID relief package as-is.
Google and Facebook reached a secret deal in 2018 in which Facebook promised not to compete with Google’s online advertising tools in return for special treatment in Google-run ad auctions, claims a lawsuit filed by Texas and nine other GOP-led states.
“Google is a trillion-dollar monopoly brazenly abusing its monopolistic power, going so far as to induce senior Facebook executives to agree to a contractual scheme that undermines the heart of [the] competitive process,’” argues Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
As described in the suit, Facebook must spend at least $500 million each year in Google-run ad auctions. In return, Facebook is guaranteed to win a fixed percentage of those actions. This is a cheap deal compared to direct competition.
Most concerning is a provision of the deal in which both companies agree to “cooperate and assist each other in responding to any antitrust action.” This agreement proves that both companies knew the deal was illegal.
In its defense, Google said that agreements over antitrust threats are common and claimed that its deal with Facebook wasn’t a secret (even though the deal went by the code name “Jedi Blue”).
“We don’t manipulate the auction,” said a spokesperson. “There’s nothing exclusive about [Facebook’s] involvement and they don’t receive data that is not similarly made available to other buyers.”
Facebook issued a similar statement, claiming that its deal with Google ‘does not harm competition or suggest misconduct in any way.’
Google has long been criticized for using consumer-facing platforms like YouTube to eliminate or control the software that typically acts as a “middleman” for buying and selling ads on the Internet. The deal with Facebook (its largest competitor) takes that effort one step further.
As noted by the Wall Street Journal, “Google owns the dominant tool at every link in the complex chain between online publishers and advertisers, giving it undue power over the monetization of digital content.”
The states’ lawsuit seeks monetary damages from Google and asks the court to rein in Google’s behavior in order to “restore competitive conditions in the relevant markets.”
States joining Texas in the case include: Idaho, Arkansas, Indiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, North Dakota, Missouri, South Dakota, and Utah. Google faces two other lawsuits – one filed by 38 state attorneys general and another by the Department of Justice – regarding its monopoly over the Internet search market.
Author’s Note: We have no reason to doubt these accusations. It should come as no surprise to learn that Facebook, Google, and other Big Tech companies maintain preferential agreements that harm consumers and competitors.
Eighteen states have joined an unprecedented lawsuit that seeks to block four battleground states from voting in the Electoral College.
The lawsuit, filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, accuses Democratic officials in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Wisconsin of taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to make changes to election procedure.
Not only were these changes unconstitutional, but they allowed for massive amounts of voter fraud that likely changed the outcome of elections, argues Paxton. As a result, these states should be blocked from voting in the Electoral College.
The four states named in the suit represent 62 electoral votes – enough to challenge the outcome of the election.
“We’re not asking for ballots to be thrown out,” explains Colonel Allen West, Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas. “We’re asking for this to go back to the legislature and the state legislators…will decide those electors, which again is constitutional by Article 2 Section 1 of the United States Constitution.”
States participating in the lawsuit: Texas, Alabama, Arizona, Missouri, Florida, Arkansas, Kansas, Indiana, Mississippi, Louisiana, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Tennessee, and West Virginia.
President Donald Trump is also involved, having filed a motion to intervene in the suit on Wednesday. Trump is believed to have asked Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) to argue the case if it makes it to the Supreme Court.
If the Supreme Court refuses, Joe Biden’s victory is expected to be certified when the Electoral College meets on December 14th. If this occurs, “a grave cloud will hang over not only the presidency but also the republic,” says Paxton.
Paxton’s lawsuit – and the massive level of support it has received from red states – reflects a stark divide in our nation that shows no sign of shrinking. Speaking Wednesday on his radio show, Rush Limbaugh said he thinks the US is moving towards secession.
“I see more and more people asking what in the world do we have in common with the people who live in, say, New York? What is there that makes us believe that there is enough of us there to even have a chance at winning New York, especially if you’re talking about votes?” asks Limbaugh. “There cannot be a peaceful coexistence of two completely different theories of life, theories of government, theories of how we manage our affairs…We can’t be in this dire a conflict without something giving somewhere along the way.”