GOP Hopes ‘Crime Talk’ is a Golden Ticket for Midterm Candidates.
Plus, Appeals Court Lets the FBI Resume Work on the Mar-a-Lago Document Trove.
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On his Fox News show in August, Tucker Carlson concluded a segment with this advice: “If every Republican office-seeker, every Republican candidate in the United States focused on law and order and equality under the law, there would be a red wave” in the November midterm elections.
Since then, writes Matt Gertz, a senior fellow at Media Matters who tracks Fox News and other right-wing outlets, “Republican strategy appears to have fallen in line with Carlson’s suggestion.” GOP candidates are increasingly using the golden-oldie issue of crime to quite literally scare up votes, making sweeping claims about skyrocketing lawlessness that, outside of the Trump Organization, is not actually occurring.
Gertz cites a September 10 article in the Washington Post, which reported that “GOP officials have been mixing up their advertising spending, with a new focus on issues like crime,” with the word “crime” being used in 29 percent of ads in early September, a big increase from about 12 percent in July. During the same period, references to “gas prices” fell, from one in six to 1 percent.
The media had to learn never to quote Trump verbatim because of the lies, and it fact-checked him on steroids. Is it up to the task of covering him again? Plus, is the Big Lie just a pretext for not letting the other side win? Jonathan Lemire joins Charlie Sykes today.
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If it were graded as a law school writing assignment, Judge Aileen Cannon’s decision granting Donald Trump’s request to stay the FBI’s review of classified information stolen from the White House and retrieved by a search warrant from Mar-a-Lago would garner a C-. Her analysis was sloppy, riddled with legal errors, and in places devoid of basic common sense. Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed her in no uncertain terms. Thankfully for the American people, that court’s analysis is an A+. All three judges on the panel agreed with both the outcome and the reasoning, including two who—like Cannon—were appointed by Donald Trump. But unlike Cannon, their fidelity to the law and the integrity of the federal judiciary shone through, without a hint of ideology or bias.
Recall the basics of the special master situation: On August 8, the FBI searched Mar-a-Lago pursuant to a warrant signed by a federal magistrate judge in Florida. Trump filed a separate civil (not criminal) action before Judge Cannon, claiming that his constitutional interests were at stake and persuading her to halt the FBI’s investigation into the national security threats posed by Trump’s actions pending a separate review by a third federal judge—a “special master”—in proceedings that Cannon ordered could stretch through the end of November. Meanwhile, she let the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) continue its investigation—just not the FBI, even though the bureau had already reviewed the seized materials by the time Trump filed his civil action.
Will and Amanda will join JVL to discuss the latest developments in Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s ugly migrant relocation stunt, Trump’s 'Save America’ scam PAC, and New York Attorney General Letitia James’ suit—plus other hot topics of the week.
THEODORE R. JOHNSON: The Black Silent Majority.
It’s a good practice to periodically reassess what we think we know about the people around us, especially those who aren’t in our social circles. It can be all too easy for us to caricature political groups we are not part of—for those on the left to lump all conservatives, Republicans, and anti-democracy MAGA sycophants together without making distinctions among them, or for those on the right to think liberal pragmatists, Democrats, and economic socialists are just bullshit labels to suggest differences that don’t really exist. Likewise, if there are ethnic or racial groups we don’t interact with regularly, our perceptions of those groups might be similarly distorted.
A few years ago, More in Common published a fascinating study analyzing how flawed our perceptions of others are. On a question about racism, Democrats believed only half of Republicans would say that “racism still exists in America,” but approximately 80 percent of Republicans agreed with that statement. Concerning police, less than half of Republicans thought Democrats would disagree with the view that “most police are bad people”; in fact, 85 percent of Democrats disagreed with it. Unsurprisingly, those with most progressive and most conservative views held the most inaccurate opinions of the other party, which is to say they had the largest perception gaps about what their ideological counterparts think. (Disclosure: I’m the board chair of the U.S. chapter of More in Common.)
Tragedy in North Dakota… The internet is not real life. Except when it becomes real life.
On our watch list:
How an inside joke becomes a big lie… It’s all about speaking the language.
Paging Peter Meijer… You good with “unity” with this guy?
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