Thursday News: Kicking and screaming


AS BIDEN INCHES CLOSER TO VICTORY, TRUMP FILES LAWSUITS: As Democrat Joe Biden inched closer to the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the White House, President Donald Trump's campaign put into action the legal strategy the president had signaled for weeks: attacking the integrity of the voting process in states where the result could mean his defeat. Democrats scoffed at the legal challenges the president's campaign filed Wednesday in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia. In spite of the aggressive move, the flurry of court action did not seem obviously destined to impact the election's outcome. The new filings, joining existing Republican legal challenges in Pennsylvania and Nevada, demand better access for campaign observers to locations where ballots are being processed and counted, and raised absentee ballot concerns, the campaign said. The Trump campaign also is seeking to intervene in a Pennsylvania case at the Supreme Court that deals with whether ballots received up to three days after the election can be counted, deputy campaign manager Justin Clark said.

DURHAM DEMONSTRATORS DEMAND ALL VOTES BE COUNTED: Over a dozen organizations participated in the Wednesday rally, including NC Raise Up, Durham for All, Durham Beyond Policing, BYP100, North Carolina AFL-CIO, SONG, and Action NC. “The reality is that we have people that are in decision-making power that make voting less accessible, make voting dangerous for Black and brown folks in this state and in many other states,” said D’atra Jackson, national director of BYP100, in an interview with The News & Observer. “I think this will be one of those states that will be contested,” Jackson said. “And this rally today is to help get as many people from our community prepared for that, and prepared to respond.” Michelle Burton, president of the Durham Association of Educators, told demonstrators that she is “hurt” and “upset” about the results of the election. Some organizers said they were disappointed by Trump’s success in the state. “We know now without a shadow of a doubt that there’s a strong force in this state, in this country, to keep this racial caste system deeply entrenched,” Burton said.

RABBI WANTS TO MEET WITH MARK ROBINSON TO DISCUSS ANTISEMITISM: "When given the chance to repudiate it, he refused to do so," Solomon said. "He stood by it. He took it as a source of pride." Solomon then sent a letter to Robinson, asking to have a face-to-face meeting with him. “I think we would like to have the chance to share with him how much his words hurt, and hopefully give him a chance to educate himself on the Jewish community,” Solomon said. If the discussion happens, Solomon said he would remind Robinson he represents all North Carolinians, including those who want clarity on his post. "Children and teenagers are asking what does this mean, about someone who represents us," Solomon said. "Someone who is using antisemitic language ... is that possible? Even my own daughter." WRAL News did reach out to the lieutenant governor-elect. An interview was scheduled for Wednesday, but when it was disclosed WRAL News wanted to talk about this letter as well, we didn’t hear back from his representatives to firmly lock down a time.

TRUMP TEAM SENT SOME 8 MILLION TEXTS PUSHING CONSPIRACY THEORIES: President Trump, his son and top members of his campaign on Wednesday advanced a set of unfounded conspiracy theories about the vote-tallying process to claim that Democrats were rigging the final count. Eric Trump tweeted a video, first pushed out by an account associated with the far-right QAnon conspiracy theory, that purported to show someone burning ballots cast for his father. The materials turned out to be sample ballots, and Twitter quickly suspended the original account that circulated the misleading clip. Trump’s son and others, including White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, claimed falsely in tweets later hidden by warning labels that the president had won Pennsylvania — even though no such determination had been made. And the campaign’s spokesman, Tim Murtaugh, claimed without evidence that crowd control at a processing center in Detroit was an effort to thwart Trump’s chances of reelection. The misleading messages came as states continued to count mail-in ballots that appeared to favor former vice president Joe Biden. The Trump campaign’s quest to sow doubt about the tabulation process went hand-in-hand with its pursuit of a flurry of legal actions seeking to halt the counting and its tacit endorsement of protests from Philadelphia to Detroit aiming to “stop the steal.” The tweets from Trump and his family members reverberated quickly and widely among far-right communities. After Eric Trump shared the fake video showing the desecration of pro-Trump ballots, a user on the messaging app Telegram leaped to action: “Please can everyone retweet this,” he said. On Facebook, meanwhile, all nine of Trump’s posts were tagged with extra-information boxes disputing or adding context to his claims. Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

TRUMP'S DOJ HINTS AT SENDING ARMED AGENTS INTO BALLOT-COUNTING LOCATIONS: The Justice Department told federal prosecutors in an email early on Wednesday that the law allowed them to send armed federal officers to ballot-counting locations around the country to investigate potential voter fraud, according to three people who described the message. The email created the specter of the federal government intimidating local election officials or otherwise intervening in vote tallying amid calls by President Trump to end the tabulating in states where he was trailing in the presidential race, former officials said. A law prohibits the stationing of armed federal officers at polls on Election Day. But a top official told prosecutors that the department interpreted the statute to mean that they could send armed federal officers to polling stations and locations where ballots were being counted anytime after that. The statute “does not prevent armed federal law enforcement persons from responding to, investigate, or prevent federal crimes at closed polling places or at other locations where votes are being counted,” the official, Richard P. Donoghue, told prosecutors in an email that he sent around 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday. One state election official vowed to resist any interference or intimidation efforts by federal officials. “Elections are a state matter, and we have authority as state officials over anyone trying to enter locations where ballots are being counted,” said Attorney General Maura Healey of Massachusetts. “Anything else is a radical reinterpretation of the law. States can handle elections, and we will ensure the people decide the outcome.”



I'd like to give you a firm update

on Electoral votes so far, but I'm seeing two major differences. The AP has the count at 264-214, but both WaPo and NYT have 253-214. That difference appears to be Arizona, which the AP has already called. Nevada would give Biden the 270 he needs, but he's currently only leading by about 8,000 votes. They plan to announce something at noon today. But their noon isn't our noon, so...

New lows

Every hour brings a new and despicable low from the Orange Menace, with his cult followers willing to throw themselves off cliffs in his honor. It's the most sickening thing I've ever seen, and I've seen plenty of sickening things in my 70 years on earth.

One thing this election has finally put to rest for me is the idea that there's a magic man in heaven sorting out good and evil as part of some cosmic shuffle. Any god who would look at this planet and embrace the hate that humans have for one another is more or less an asshole, unworthy of acknowledgement, let alone praise.

Robinson needs a closer look

Robinson came out of nowhere, propelled to Internet fame by a viral video advocating gun rights promoted by Mark Walker. He was invited to speak at the NRA's convention.

He's also had financial problems and declared bankruptcy at least three times.

There's something fishy about his sudden rise and campaign. I think the Lt Governor's race got pretty much ignored by everyone because of Tillis/Cunningham. However, the left needs to take a hard, deep dive into what's driving Robinson's political career here, following the money where it may lead.

What's kind of funny is

he actually emerged as a gun-rights advocate when he did not even own a gun at the time. "Might want one in the future" and was (allegedly) worried he wouldn't be able to get one.

At the time he made his public comments at the Greensboro City Council, I just wrote him off as one of those folks who complain about whatever is on the agenda, just to get microphone time. It's possible he was actually recruited by somebody (NRA or GRNC) to do that because he's a black conservative. But those folks will find a platform all on their own (Diamond, Silk, Sonja Nichols, etc.).


And we all know about how the NRA's finances and campaign monies are being scrutinized. Robinson might not have only been recruited, but there's a possibility he was offered some cold hard illegally laundered cash through the NRA to run.

Diamond and Silk, btw

I've looked at Diamond and Silk's social media numbers and know some people who make an income from YouTube and social media.

One YouTuber, an artist who calls himself "Jazza", makes his full living from YouTube and has enough income to hire a video editor and has built himself a small studio. He has over 5 million subscribers.

Another I know makes enough income from YouTube to pursue making videos as a hobby, buying devices he reviews and takes apart in his videos. He has one million subscribers.

Diamond and Silk have 308,000 subscribers.

They're getting enough money to be full-time right wing nutjobs. That money ain't coming from social media.

I went down a rabbit hole

with my older son earlier this year looking at the insane number of people who pay $$$ to go to stadiums and such to watch people play video games. Be like 6-8 gamers on stage, and thousands watching from the stands. I was like, "That's bullshit" until he showed me.