After 2 years of muddling through the Trump Administration, Presidential hopefuls are confident they can break America out of the fog. As more contenders throw their hats into the ring, now is a good time to get to know your candidates and vet their qualifications.
As we await the conclusion of the Mueller investigation, democrats, and an increasing amount of republicans, have expressed their fervent disapproval of the sitting Commander-In-Chief. Still, that has not stopped him from announcing his bid for re-election. Donald Trump believes he will claim certain victory, as there is only one elected president before him that has not received his party’s nomination. Regarding qualifications, Trump is sure his recent tax bill that inadvertently lowered expected refunds along with tax rates for 80% of Americans, according to the Tax Policy Center, will secure his second term. His life in-and-out of politics has been marred with controversy. Between a massive collusion scandal, a refusal to disclose his tax returns, and a glaring mistreatment of migrant children, Trump has more than proven he is incapable of the esteemed position. However, should the Mueller probe end successfully, Trump will see prison bars before he sees the Oval Office again.
The self-proclaimed Democratic-Socialist has confirmed he is running for president in the 2020 elections. Famously admired among young voters, Bernie Sanders has a complicated relationship with the party he does not claim. Many blame Bernie Sanders for splitting the Democratic party during the 2016 elections. Running on a platform of progressive values, Bernie advocates for a livable minimum wage, Medicare for all, higher taxes for the rich, and aggressive measures to combat climate change. Registered as an Independent, it is unclear if Sanders will run within his 3rd party of if he will work to secure the Democratic Party’s nomination. Regarding scandal, Bernie was a target of a 2015 deal between the DNC and Hilary Clinton’s campaign as revealed by Former DNC interim Chairwoman Donna Brazile. The deal resulted in the DNC defaulting on the principle of supporting presidential candidates in equal fashion throughout the primaries. Ultimately this leak of information caused Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, then head of the DNC, to resign. The Vermont Senator also has a complicated voting record where his opinions on gun control waver and he was famously silent on issues regarding a wage gap and sexism during his 2016 campaign.
Announcing her run on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Harris is determined to make the jump from the Senate to the Oval Office. However, opinions vary on the former prosecuting attorney due to her record and relationship with the criminal justice system. Kamala is a Howard University alum that went on to study law at Hastings College. She advanced her career by becoming a fierce prosecuting attorney, securing the district attorney spot, and ultimately ascending to attorney general. Recently, Kamala made national waves while pressing Brett Kavanaugh during hearings ahead of his confirmation vote. Still, the fear of her enacting policies that would disproportionately affect marginalized communities lingers. Should she secure the democratic nomination, Harris would be the first African-American and Indian-American president as well as first female president.
Confident that she will help re-establish the middle class, Warren has announced her bid. The Massachusetts Senator has pledged to fight for structural change. Warren is an alum of both the University of Houston and Rutgers Law School. She is a progressive Democrat who champions for student loan reform. Having advocated for the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Warren is committed to fighting corporate capitalism. In 2018, Senator Elizabeth Warren made the mistake of releasing her DNA results in an effort to end insults made by President Trump who frequently called her Pocahontas. She previously exploited her Native American ancestry and listed herself as a minority professor at Harvard Law School.
This post will be followed with updates as individuals enter the race.
The Best Tributes You Didn’t See On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2021
Every year as the United States celebrates the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his lasting legacy, we see social media platforms littered with various MLK quotations, “love one another” captions, you know – the general bulls**t we all wish we didn’t have to see on an annual basis.
What we don’t see enough are actual dialogues about who MLK was and the type of radical he actually was. He was not a martyr – he died as the State turned a blind eye to the obvious plots against his life. He was not a capitalist – he died firmly abhorring capitalism. Toward the end of his life, he even grew increasingly concerned with Israel and its treatment of Palestinians.
MLK’s memory and legacy have been sanitized to make white Americans feel less guilty about their treatment of Black Americans and their complicity in white supremacy and its many atrocities. In his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” Dr. King stated in no uncertain terms “that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice…”
Every third Monday in January those white folks more committed to order than to justice put themselves on full display. They proudly wave their “I’m not racist!” flag in Black folks’ faces, as if we give a damn about their shallow tweet that quotes a radical they know nothing about or their vapid, over-filtered selfie on Instagram captioned by a “deep, thoughtful” Martin Luther King, Jr. quotation.
Instead of carrying on about the commercialism of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, let’s take a look at a few of the best non-performative tributes the internet provided this year.
Mob of Trump Supporters Storm U.S. Capitol, Sending Congress Into Lockdown
On Wednesday afternoon an angry mob of Trump supporters, white supremacists, and what this website is calling “terrorists” stormed the United States Capitol as members of Congress were in session.
Earlier in the day, President Trump spoke to a crowd of several thousand at an event in Washington, D.C. called the “Save America March.” Of course, as you know, since he lost the November election to Joe Biden, he has vigorously promoted various unfounded conspiracy theories that the election was rigged and somehow stolen from him. Without a single shred of evidence to back up his claim, he rambled on in front of his supporters for over an hour, charging that he lost due to widespread voter fraud. At one point, he told the crowd:
“Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy… I think right here we’re going to walk down to the Capitol and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators and our congressmen and women, and we’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them. Because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.”
Shortly after the event concluded, videos flooded the internet of the mob not only attacking police, but also walking past multiple police barricades – sometimes at the invitation of police. They eventually scaled walls, smashed windows, and broke down doors as they raided the Capitol Complex. Meanwhile, Congress recessed and went into an immediate lockdown, interrupting their largely procedural vote to certify the electoral results of the 2020 presidential election.
Many Twitter users were quick to point out the glaring disparity in law enforcement’s treatment of these terrorists with their treatment of Black Lives Matter protesters last summer. As you’ll recall, Trump ordered police use tear gas and rubber bullets when clearing a crowd outside the White House all for a photo op with a Bible.
Throughout the afternoon, many around the world watched as the Capitol grounds became unrecognizable in a sea of Trump flags and other white supremacist colors. For over 4 hours, the terrorists were allowed to roam freely throughout government halls. Many proudly posed for pictures inside congressional offices, on the floors of Congress, and throughout the halls. In one video, a police officer inside a building gave a thumbs up as he posed for a selfie with a terrorist. The scenes that came out of this insurrection were jarring for many.
For over two hours following the terrorists’ rushing of the Capitol, President Trump was completely silent on the matter. As more time passed, it became apparent that he would not make any serious attempts to quell the violence unfolding in his own backyard. All Americans got was a now-deleted video posted to social media in which Trump told the mob, “I know your pain. I know you’re hurt. 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 love you. You’re very special.”
Of course the President of the United States calling armed insurrectionists “very special” lit people up. Today’s events were the last straw for many; even with only two weeks left in office, he still managed to make more enemies than he already had.
By the time police finally decided to respond, the mayor had already put a 6pm curfew in place. Despite multiple law enforcement agencies clearing the Capitol and blocking the area around it, terrorists still hung around the complex well into the evening. It wasn’t until 8pm – over 8 hours after the siege began – that Congress was able to return to counting the electoral votes (they didn’t finish the count until nearly 4am).
When all was said and done, law enforcement made 52 arrests, safely detonated at least 2 pipe bombs found at the RNC and DNC headquarters, arrested a suspect connected to a vehicle found with firearms, ammunition, and explosives, and confirmed 4 terrorists died.
Photo Credit: Julio Cortez/AP
Steve Bannon Arrested on Border Wall Fundraising Scheme
Steve Bannon, Donald Trump’s former political adviser, and three other leaders of the“We Build the Wall” online fundraising campaign have been indicted on wire fraud and money laundering charges by federal prosecutors.
Federal agents and officials from the United States Postal Inspection arrested Bannon while he was on a boat located off the eastern coast of Connecticut.
Bannon is expected to make his initial court appearance in New York later today, according to the US attorney’s office. Bannon’s attorney, Bill Burck, declined to comment on the matter.
Audrey Strauss, acting Manhattan U.S attorney, issued the following statement:
“As alleged, the defendants defrauded hundreds of thousands of donors, capitalizing on their interest in funding a border wall to raise millions of dollars, under the false pretense that all of that money would be spent on construction. While repeatedly assuring donors that Brian Kolfage, the founder and public face of We Build the Wall, would not be paid a cent, the defendants secretly schemed to pass hundreds of thousands of dollars to Kolfage, which he used to fund his lavish lifestyle. We thank the USPIS for their partnership in investigating this case, and we remain dedicated to rooting out and prosecuting fraud wherever we find it.”
According to the charges, Kolfage—one of the crowdfunding organizers, spent more than $350,000 of the donations on personal expenses. These expenses include a luxury SUV, a golf cart, cosmetic surgery, home renovations, jewelry, personal tax payments, and credit card debt.
The four individuals being charged—Bannon, Kolfage, Andrew Badolato, and Timothy Shea—are charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, CNN reports.