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► The Indianapolis Star reports on yet another mass shooting in the United States, this one at a FedEx distribution site in Indianapolis:
Officers arrived to a “chaotic and active” crime scene, according to IMPD Deputy Chief of Investigations Craig McCartt.
Eight people, plus the suspected gunman, were found dead in and around the facility. It’s believed the shooter died by suicide shortly before police arrived.
McCartt said at a Friday morning news conference that the shooter arrived at the building and began “randomly” firing in the parking lot — with no confrontation or argument before the shooting started. He then went inside the building and continued shooting. Four people were found dead outside and four were found dead inside.
► Republican State Rep. Ron Hanks, the “Insurrectionist Man of Mystery,” continues to press his case as the biggest asshole in the Colorado legislature. Hanks attempted to give lawmakers a history lesson on Thursday and warmed up with a really tasteless joke. From 9News:
Hanks (R-Penrose) falsely alleged that the three-fifths compromise was not “impugning anybody’s humanity” while debating a civics education bill on the House floor Thursday.
“The three-fifths compromise, of course, was an effort by non-slave states … to try and reduce the amount of representation that the slave states had,” Hanks said. “It was not impugning anybody’s humanity.”
This comment was preceded by another where he referenced being mistakenly called up as Rep. Mike Lynch (R-Wellington).
“Being called Mr. Lynch might be a good thing for what I’m about to say … no, just kidding,” Hanks said.
Hanks’ ridiculous comments earned him national headlines.
► Let’s check in on more state legislative news:
The House of Representatives approved the annual state budget bill despite a few mindless protests from Republican lawmakers.
A bill that would reduce sentencing requirements for felony murder convictions is on its way to the desk of Gov. Jared Polis. On Thursday, Gov. Polis signed into law a bill that allows victims of child sexual abuse more time to bring civil lawsuits against perpetrators.
Lawmakers are considering making significant changes to admission requirements for colleges and universities.
A new law will give formerly incarcerated people with firefighting experience more opportunities to return to the firefighting profession.
Legislation that would have required ski resorts to provide more transparency about injuries on the slopes died in committee.
Pueblo County is opposing a proposal to speed up the process of reducing harmful emissions in Colorado.
Dave Perry of The Aurora Sentinel voices support for the “Colorado Option” healthcare plan being debated in the state legislature.
► The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel confirms a story first reported here at Colorado Pols about former Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese withdrawing her name from consideration as Mesa County Attorney…which probably has something to do with the fact that Pugliese wants to run for Secretary of State and now lives in Colorado Springs.
► Republican Qaucus leaders were the ONLY two Members of Congress to vote NO on a routine reauthorization of the nation’s bone marrow registry and umbilical cord blood used in bone marrow transplants. Republican Reps. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene represented the “2” in the 415-2 vote in favor of H.R. 941.
More political (and coronavirus) news is available right after the jump…
And Now, More Words…
► Colorado counties will begin to take on more of the responsibility of responding to the ebb and flow of COVID-19 cases. As John Frank writes for Axios:
A Magellan Strategies poll from February found 56% of voters approved of how he’s addressing COVID-19, which was higher than the Biden administration. “I do think this is smart politics for Governor Polis,” said pollster Ryan Winger.
The bottom line: In assessing Polis, Democratic strategists believe he’s achieved the right balance.
“I think Polis has been focused less on politics and more on the health and safety of Coloradans — ultimately that’s how voters are going to judge his response,” said Jason Bane, a prominent Democratic blogger. [hey, that’s THIS blog!]
“So, is there risk? Sure, but at this point it’s a low-threshold risk to me,” added Democratic consultant Steve Welchert.
Colorado Public Radio has more on the changes that will put more control in the hands of counties.
► As The Washington Post reports, a founding member of the Oath Keepers militia group is singing to prosecutors about the Jan. 6 terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol:
A founding member of the Oath Keepers arrested in the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol pleaded guilty Friday and agreed to cooperate against others in the case — the first defendant to publicly flip in the sprawling domestic terrorism investigation that has led to charges against more than 410 people.
The plea comes exactly 100 days after Jon Ryan Schaffer and hundreds of other supporters of former president Donald Trump allegedly stormed the Capitol hoping to prevent Joe Biden from being confirmed as the next president. Prosecutors hope Schaffer’s plea spurs others to provide additional evidence in hopes of avoiding long prison sentences.
The plea marks a new stage in the historic investigation, as prosecutors seek to work up the chain of defendants to gather evidence and better understand the full scope of any planning and organizing of the violence — particularly among groups like the far-right Oath Keepers and the Proud Boys. Dozens of members from both groups appeared to act in concert to storm the building, prosecutors have alleged.
► Go ahead and try arguing that these comments from Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert (R-ifle) are not a racist dog whistle.
► We’re #12! As the Colorado Springs Independent reports, Colorado is doing pretty well in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
► As CBS4 Denver reports, UCHealth is already planning ahead for the possibility that a third COVID-19 booster shot could be needed sometime this year.
► Only the best people, right?
Mass shootings are illegal.
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) April 16, 2021
► Aurora is lagging behind other municipalities in Colorado when it comes to taking action to address Climate Change.
► The new superintendent of Jefferson County Public Schools will start her job on Monday.
► The Colorado Sun reports on a lawsuit filed by a woman with dementia who was assaulted by Loveland police officers.
► Video was released on Thursday of an officer-involved shooting death of a 13-year-old boy in Chicago. We wouldn’t recommend watching the video yourself.
Say What, Now?
► We haven’t seen a power grab like this since…early January.
The Democrat Party is so fractured that they need to pack the Supreme Court to pass their radical agenda.
This is a power grab unlike any we’ve ever seen before. We need a constitutional amendment that protects SCOTUS against the Left’s court-packing scheme. pic.twitter.com/HgVmRyLXyQ
— Congressman Ken Buck (@RepKenBuck) April 15, 2021
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► As POLITICO reports, GOP donors are flocking to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is viewed as a “nicer version” of Donald Trump…whatever that means.
► A Canadian Member of Parliament is apologizing after being caught without pants during a Zoom meeting.
► The split between Republicans and big corporations has been in the works for a long time, writes Zack Stanton for POLITICO.
► Hosts Jason Bane and Ian Silverii discuss Rep. Lauren Boebert’s views on the “spirit realm” in this week’s episode of The Get More Smarter Podcast: