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► The Congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection will hold publicly-televised hearings on Thursday evening. In the meantime, more damning details continue to leak out about former President Donald Trump’s role in the attempted coup. From The Washington Post:
Shortly before pro-Trump rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, Secret Service agents scrambled to try to secure a motorcade route so then-President Donald Trump could accompany his supporters as they marched on Congress to demand he stay in power, according to two people briefed on witnesses’ accounts to congressional investigators.
The hectic events that day followed nearly two weeks of persistent pressure from Trump on the Secret Service to devise a plan for him to join his supporters on a march to the Capitol from the park near the White House where he was leading a massive rally that he predicted would be “wild.”
The agency had rebuffed Trump’s early entreaties, but the rushed effort on Jan. 6 to accommodate the president came as Secret Service personnel heard Trump urge his rally audience of nearly 30,000 people to march to the Capitol while suggesting he would join them. Their mission was clear, he said: pressure “weak” Republicans to refuse to accept the election results that made Joe Biden the next president.
Witnesses have told the House Jan. 6 committee that, immediately after Trump made that remark, Secret Service agents contacted D.C. police about blocking intersections, according to the people briefed on the testimony. Police officials declined, as they were stretched thin due to their role monitoring numerous protests and later assisting with a growing mob at the Capitol, the people said. A senior law enforcement official told The Washington Post that the president’s detail leader scuttled the idea as untenable and unsafe.
► Seven states are holding Primary Elections today. NPR reports on where to look for the more interesting angles. Among them are a ballot measure in South Dakota that could make it harder for the state to approve Medicaid expansion in November.
► CBS News reports on some head-scratching poll numbers regarding mass shootings. Jennifer Rubin of The Washington Post picks out the strangest figures:
Only 3 percent of Republicans say America would be safer if guns were banned; only 13 percent say it would be safer with fewer guns. A plurality of Republicans are convinced the number of guns has no effect on gun violence.
The kicker is that while only 28 percent of the general population thinks we have to accept mass gun murder as part of living in a free society, 44 percent of Republicans do. It’s an open question as to whether Republicans truly believe that claim or simply deny that there are solutions to maintain their belief in unlimited access to guns. But their willingness to accept tens of thousands of deaths each year from gun-related injuries, including small children, should stun and depress the rational Americans who do not think mass murders of schoolchildren are just a part of life.
► There has been a lot of talk lately about the role Unaffiliated voters might play in the June 28th Primary Election. Meghan Lopez of Denver7 has more on the topic, including some comments from a familiar name for readers of Colorado Pols.
Meanwhile, thousands of Democrats are reportedly changing their party affiliation in order to vote out Republican Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert in CO-03. If these numbers are accurate, Boebert could be in real trouble.
► The Denver Post looks at eight of the most interesting Primary races to watch in the next few weeks. The Colorado Sun outlines where the four Republican candidates in CO-08 stand on important issues.
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► A debate is re-emerging in the wake of multiple mass shootings regarding the importance and relevance of showing grisly details from these mass murders. From The Washington Post:
The argument in favor of showing photos of gun violence that kills schoolchildren, or grocery shoppers, or hospital workers seems to turn largely on the idea that it will galvanize action on new restrictions on firearms by mobilizing public opinion…
…Publishing images depicting violence to move public policy is neither a new idea nor limited to shootings. The images of lynched teenager Emmett Till’s brutalized body in a 1955 Jet magazine — his mother had insisted on an open-casket funeral, to “let the people see what I’ve seen” — helped galvanize the civil rights movement.
► British Prime Minister Boris Johnson survived a vote of “no confidence” after members of his own Conservative Party expressed disgust with his leadership. But as Katy Balls writes for The New York Times, this is probably the beginning of Johnson’s end:
Technically, Mr. Johnson ought to be safe from another challenge to his leadership for a year. But the truth is bleaker: In British politics, there is no such thing as victory in a confidence vote. Instead, it tends to mark the beginning of the end, the start of a leader’s slow death. Theresa May announced her resignation less than six months after winning hers (by a bigger margin), while Margaret Thatcher lasted just 48 hours. John Major managed to stay in office after winning his. The result was electoral annihilation.
Mr. Johnson’s supporters insist that he is the exception to the rule, that he isn’t, as one minister put it on TV, a “dead man walking.” There was a time when the bulk of Conservative lawmakers would have believed the claim. No longer. Rejected by many in his party and facing a public backlash, Mr. Johnson is now badly, perhaps fatally, wounded. The likelihood that he leads the party into the next election has plummeted.
► Governor Jared Polis is signing a bunch of new bills into law today. Click here for press releases on the latest signings.
► As the June 28th Primary draws closer, Republican candidates for Governor are working hard to out-crazy each other.
In the race for the GOP Senate nomination, Joe O’Dea appears to have realized that he might actually lose to wacky State Rep. Ron Hanks.
► Jesse Paul of The Colorado Sun tried to understand what Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters is complaining about regarding alleged fraud in the 2020 election. As he reports in the “Unaffiliated” newsletter, that conversation went nowhere:
Here’s how that went:
JESSE: I’ve never understood who you’re alleging is manipulating things.
PETERS: Well, it’s people that want to select, not elect the people. And it’s happening on both sides.
JESSE: Who are those people?
PETERS: Who do you think wants control of the U.S. and of the world? These people are being selected, not elected, and they’re doing it on both sides.
JESSE: So you think there are Republicans who are committing election fraud, too?
PETERS: No, I think that these people that want power and want control are manipulating all those things.
The exchange about who is behind the alleged tampering ended with Peters saying “you’ll have to do your own research on that, because I’m not going to get you in the weeds.”
► Republican State Rep. Richard Holtorf recently compared Democratic lawmakers to terrorists, as the “Unaffiliated” reports:
“In the military we had a saying that you can’t negotiate with a terrorist,” he said. “Now I know that’s extreme, but I just use this to make a point. Some of these people, if you get in bed with them— figuratively speaking — you are going to be in trouble because they’re going to take you down a road that’s going to take you down a rabbit hole and when you get to the end of that trail … it’s not going to end well.”
Holtorf said some Democrats in the House are “progressive liberal ideologues who are card-carrying socialist-minded and Marxist-minded individuals (who) will not help you any.”
► The new trend in ads from Republican campaigns in Colorado is to show the candidate firing a gun.
► The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reports on a Democratic Primary in Garfield County.
► Attorney General Phil Weiser is warning about voter intimidation ahead of the June 28th Primary Election.
► POLITICO reports that Republican Senators seem surprisingly optimistic about a deal on legislation addressing gun violence.
► Former President Donald Trump is demanding that Republican allies mount a strong defense for him in news coverage surrounding Thursday’s hearings on the Jan. 6 insurrection.
► Republican State Rep. Kevin Van Winkle was appointed to fill the remainder of the term left by former Senate Minority Leader Chris Holbert, who resigned last month.
► The Denver Post reports on more lawsuits surrounding the never-ending saga of a “Jefferson County Parkway” to complete the Western part of E-470/C-470.
Say What, Now?
Did you know that Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert has yet to pass A SINGLE BILL since she has been in Congress?
Your Daily Dose Of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
► The world needs The Onion:
► As The Colorado Sun notes, some Colorado Congressional candidates don’t actually live within the district they are running to represent. Some Congressional candidates are also fairly new to the political party to which they below.
► The Colorado Secretary of State’s office has ruled that a political donation from Republican activist Michael Fields to the campaign of Republican Attorney General candidate John Kellner is likely a campaign finance violation. Click here (Kellner-Fields-Complaint) to read the decision (PDF).
Marianne Goodland has more for the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman.
► Check out the latest episode of the Get More Smarter Podcast, featuring an interview with Rep. Tom Sullivan, perhaps Colorado’s most prominent gun safety advocate and a State Senate candidate: