Jan 6 hearings latest: Raskin ‘doesn’t buy’ Secret Service’s explanation for missing texts as new Trump video released

Jamie Raskin says he ‘doesn’t buy’ that Secret Service cannot find their texts to each other

Congressman Jamie Raskin, one of the Democratic members of the Jan 6 select committee, said last night that he does not believe the US Secret Service’s explanation for why agents’ texts from 5 and 6 January 2021 are missing.

The service recently provided the select committee with a single text. Asked by Late Show host Stephen Colbert what he thought, Mr Raskin replied: “I don’t really buy that for one minute…there was a preplanned migration of phones that just happened to be on the same day as the first violent insurrection in American history? So I’m a little dubious of that.”

Meanwhile, the committee has revealed that Donald Trump heavily edited the text of a speech he recorded the day after the Capitol riot, cutting a crucial sentence that called for those who violently attacked Congress to be prosecuted.

Along with videotaped testimony from various administration witnesses, the committee released footage of Ivanka Trump confirming that the handwriting on the script is her father’s.

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VOICES: After her star turn at a Jan 6 hearing, Elaine Luria comes out swinging against Donald Trump

Over the weekend, after a jury found former Trump adviser Steve Bannon guilty of contempt of Congress, Representative Elaine Luria of Virginia tweeted out two images of the former Trump adviser: one as a handsome, well-built Naval officer and another in his more well-known incarnation as a disheveled and haggard civilian wearing far too many shirts for a DC summer. As the caption put it: “This is what hate does to you.”

The source of the tweet was surprising. Ms Luria, a former US Naval officer herself and a graduate of Annapolis, has historically been incredibly reserved. Most days on Capitol Hill, Ms Luria is averse to speaking to reporters, and even after the 6 January committee’s prime-time hearing on Thursday, she didn’t speak much to the assembled press pack, saving much of what she had to say for big television interviews.

Nonetheless, her vocal denunciations of former president Donald Trump as she led the last hearing were a major break from her typical tendency to step back. And this louder, more assertive persona has appeared just as she faces the fight for her political life.

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Jamie Raskin: Secret Service’s missing text explanation not credible

Jamie Raskin appeared on Stephen Colbert’s Late Show last night to discuss the work of the Jan 6 select committee, and he was unsparing in his judgment of the Secret Service’s claim that texts from 5 and 6 January were deleted by accident.

“When was the last time you got one text in a day?” he asked, referring to the service’s production of a single message in response to the select committee’s request.

“I don’t really buy that for one minute. For one thing, isn’t it a little odd that all the texts would vanish for 6 January and 5 January? Of all the days, what an odd coincidence that is.”

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Wisconsin Dem U.S. Senate candidate Tom Nelson quits race

Tom Nelson, a candidate who tried to position himself as the most progressive in Wisconsin‘s Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate, announced Monday he dropped out of the contest to face Republican incumbent Ron Johnson in November.

Nelson, the Outagamie County executive, threw his support to Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, who is in a tight race with Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry. State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski is polling further behind. Nelson was in fourth place.

“Mandela can now count on me to be on his side every step of the way,” Nelson said in a statement. “I urge other Democratic primary voters to also support him now as well.”

Nelson’s decision ends a campaign he launched in October 2020.

Federal filings show Nelson raised a little less than $1.4 million for his campaign and he said “unfortunately, money matters way too much in politics and running against two self-funding millionaires proved too much for this pastor’s kid.”

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Liz Cheney: ‘I’ll make a decision about 2024 down the road’

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Progressive House staffers occupy Schumer’s office as he negotiates with Manchin

Progressive House staffers staged a protest in Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s office, urging him to keep negotiating on climate change legislation amid talks with Senator Joe Manchin.

Saul Levin, a staffer for Representative Cori Bush, posted photos of himself and other members of Ms Bush’s team in Mr Schumer’s office on Monday.

“To my knowledge, this has never been done,” he tweeted. “We’ve also never seen climate catastrophe, so we’re meeting the moment. Follow along as we fight with everything we have to jumpstart climate negotiations.”

The move comes as Mr Schumer is in negotiations with Mr Manchin. Mr Manchin announced on Monday that he had tested positive for Covid-19, which in turn came not long after Mr Schumer had to self-isolate after he tested positive for Covid.

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Kinzinger uses military service to clap back at Matt Gaetz

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Trump v. DeSantis: Young conservatives debate GOP’s future

When former President Donald Trump took the stage before a crowd of more than 5,000 young conservative activists in Tampa this weekend, he received the rock star’s welcome he’s grown accustomed to over the seven years in which he’s reshaped the Republican Party.

One night earlier, it was Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis who had the crowd on its feet as he headlined the day’s program at Turning Point USA’s annual Student Action Summit.

“To be honest, it’s like choosing between your favorite child,” said Leo Milik, 19, who lives in Barrington, Illinois, when asked whom he’d like to see as the party’s next nominee.

Milik, wearing a “Trump was Right” baseball cap, said both Republicans “have their pros, they have their cons.” For now, he said, he’s leaning toward Trump.

That sentiment reflects the soul searching underway inside the GOP as an invisible primary for the 2024 presidential nomination begins to take shape, dominated at least for the moment by Trump and DeSantis.

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Kinzinger urges Trump prosecution

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US conservatives embracing controversial Hungarian leader

When heads of state visit the U.S., the top item on their itinerary is usually a White House visit. For Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban next month, it will be addressing a conference of conservative activists in Dallas.

Orban’s appearance at the Conservative Political Action Conference, where he’ll be joined by former President Donald Trump and right-wing icons such as Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., is the most dramatic indication yet of how a leader criticized for pushing anti-democratic principles has become a hero to segments of the Republican Party.

Orban has curbed immigration and stymied those who envision a more middle-of-the-road European democracy for their country. He’s done so by seizing control of Hungary’s judiciary and media, leading many international analysts to label him as the face of a new wave of authoritarianism. He also is accused of enabling widespread corruption and nepotism, using state resources to enrich a tight circle of political allies.

The U.S. conservative movement’s embrace of Orban comes as it echoes Trump’s lies that he did not lose the 2020 presidential election, punishes Republicans who tried to hold him accountable for the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, and embrace new voting restrictions. Many experts on Hungarian politics fear the GOP might aspire to Orban’s tactics.

“The Trumpist side of the Republican Party is coming for the rhetoric, but staying for the autocracy,” said Kim L. Schepple, a sociologist at Princeton University who has studied Orban. “I’m worried the attraction to Orban is only superficially the culture war stuff and more deeply about how to prevent power from ever rotating out of their hands.”

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West Virginia lawmaker sent to jail for Jan 6 says he will ‘raise hell’ in DC

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