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Josh Hawley Quotes White Nationalist Magazine to Celebrate 4th of July

The Republican senator claimed the quote came from Founding Father Patrick Henry.

Senator Josh Hawley
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Senator Josh Hawley

On the Fourth of July, Senator Josh Hawley decided to celebrate America by posting a fake quote from a Founding Father. Even a minute of critical thinking should have stopped him from doing so.

Beyond Hawley using his Independence Day message as a vessel to rear for Christian nationalism, he also attributed the quote to Founding Father Patrick Henry.

Henry, known for declaring at the Second Virginia Convention, “Give me liberty, or give me death!” passed away in June 1799. This was famously before America had built any history of affording “asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship” to anyone. Nevertheless, Hawley seems to think that it made sense for Henry to hail America for somehow doing all that just years after the nation was founded.

The quote Hawley tweeted is actually from an article written almost 200 years after the revolutionary war, a 1956 piece from the viciously antisemitic and white nationalist magazine The Virginian.

The article was responding to what it calls an “insidious campaign of false propaganda being waged today, to the effect that our country is not a Christian country but a religious one—that it was not founded on Christianity but on freedom of religion.” The author cited Henry’s will, in which he wrote about how he wishes he could also give his family “the Christian Religion,” as apparent proof of this notion.

As Seth Cotlar, a professor of U.S. history at Willamette University, pointed out, The Virginian is certainly not the kind of magazine you’d want to be citing from. Beyond its yearning for America to be a Christian nation, it has decried “race mixing in [the] army” and made a donation pitch to readers by whipping up fears about “the conspiracy to mongrelize white America [that] lies in the powerful, wealthy Jewish organizations.”

Besides either the stupidity or malice behind the tweet, the core message is not an aberration for Hawley. Just two weeks ago, he appeared at a religious-right activist conference where he asserted that Christianity had “formed the soul of this country” and cried that “the time for Christians to rise is now.”

Either Hawley (or his staff) didn’t know that Henry never actually said the quote (and they didn’t bother to think more than five seconds about the basic logic behind it), or Hawley willfully misquoted Henry and even knew where the quote came from and was happy to do so.

North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Calls for Lifting Taboo on Quoting Hitler

Mark Robinson made the declaration at the far-right Moms for Liberty summit.

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North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson

North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson thinks it’s not bad to quote Hitler because history textbooks do it.

Robinson spoke Sunday during the second annual summit for Moms for Liberty, a far-right “parental rights” organization that the Southern Poverty Law Center recently categorized as an extremist group. Other speakers at the weekend-long Philadelphia event included 2024 presidential candidates Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis, Vivek Ramaswamy, Nikki Haley, and Asa Hutchinson.

A clip of Robinson’s talk went viral on Wednesday. During his speech, Robinson seems to imply that quoting Hitler isn’t actually a sign of espousing what he stood for. “Because you quoted Hitler, you support Hitler. I guess every history book in America supports Hitler now. They all quote him,” he says.

“And here’s the thing,” Robinson says. “Whether you’re talking about Adolf Hitler; whether you’re talking about Chairman Mao; whether you’re talking about Stalin; whether you’re talking about Pol Pot; whether you’re talking about Castro in Cuba; or whether you’re talking about a dozen other despots all around the globe; it is time for us to get back and start reading some of those quotes.”

But the originally shared clip cuts off what Robinson says next. “It’s time for us to start teaching our children about the dirty, despicable, awful things that those communist and socialist despots did in our history,” he continues.

It makes sense that Robinson would condemn leftist revolutionaries such as Mao, Stalin, Castro, and Pol Pot. But you would be forgiven for thinking that maybe he really did suggest giving Hitler another look. Robinson, who took office in 2021, has a long history of spreading aggressively antisemitic, anti-Black, and homophobic rhetoric online. A deep dive by Talking Points Memo into the past seven years of Robinson’s Facebook activity also found that he shared conspiracy theories, 2020 election falsehoods, and even Holocaust denialism. He also previously said that communism is a greater threat to the world than Nazism was.

Still, despite Robinson’s explanation, it’s pretty hard to justify quoting Hitler in anything other than historical context. For an example, look no further than Moms for Liberty. An Indiana chapter of the organization got in trouble two weeks ago when it quoted Hitler in its newsletter. The Hamilton County, Indiana, chapter didn’t even try to hide that it was a Hitler quotation, citing the Nazi leader just under the text. The group apologized and first tried to add context to justify using the quotation. But when the blowback grew, they quietly removed the quote altogether.

This piece was updated to note additional context about Robinson’s speech.

Mondaire Jones Is Pitching a Comeback

The former Democratic congressman from New York wants to win back his seat—after the former DCCC chair essentially bullied him out and then lost the race to a Republican.

Jemal Countess/Getty Images for Take Back the Court Action Fund
Mondaire Jones

A year after being pushed out of his district by losing Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chair Sean Patrick Maloney, Mondaire Jones is pitching a comeback to Congress.

The former New York congressman announced his bid to take back his seat on Wednesday morning:

Jones is running for New York’s 17th congressional district, one he used to represent before a messy redistricting process pushed him out. With redrawn congressional maps prompted by former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s stacked conservative state court, DCCC chair Maloney decided to run in Jones’s district, essentially bullying Jones out. Maloney then got egg on his face by losing to Republican Mike Lawler in a redistricted map that would have voted for Biden by 10 percentage points.

In his video announcement Wednesday, Jones focused especially on gun violence, his role in increasing police funding, and his specific roots to Rockland County.

“Gun violence is a uniquely American problem, and it’s frightening to be a parent and know that I could send my kid off to school and never see them again,” parent Beth Davidson says in the video. “Mondaire has been a champion for keeping people safe.”

Jones also brought out Dave Ryan of the Hudson Valley Police to express his support for Jones because he “funded the police.” While the New York suburbs are actually among the safest communities in the country, they are also home to many of the officers who police New York City. Lawler, among other successful New York Republicans from the last election cycle, peddled fears around crime despite those facts. Many other New York Republicans who secured surprising victories, like Lawler, enjoyed the support of the likes of then-president of the New York City police union Patrick Lynch. Jones seems eager to head off that dynamic—not by pointing out the contradiction but instead by placating those interests.

And given the shaky precedent of Jones being pushed out, then being forced to run in a district he had less connection with, all to come back and run in his old (now slightly modified by redistricting) district, Jones is paying special focus on highlighting his roots to the area.

“I was lucky to grow up in Rockland County,” Jones said in his video. “Raised by a young single mom, who like so many incredible women throughout this district, still had to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.”

In the last election, when all was said and done, Jones was in part victim to the series of dramas that helped Democrats narrowly lose the House majority, setting course for what the day-to-day activity of Congress would look like until 2024.

In November, Maloney became the first party chair to lose an election in four decades. Jones didn’t even make it out of the crowded primary he then ran in, losing to wealthy and massively self-funded Daniel Goldman (who also benefited from a New York Times endorsement, having connections with Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger).

The crowded primary pitted Jones against other progressives, including Yuh-Line Niou, who took second, and Carlina Rivera, who came in fourth behind Jones. Their combined vote totals far outpaced Goldman’s.

Now Jones will be vying to take on Lawler, the vulnerable Republican who beat Maloney. But first he must win a primary that already perhaps feels somewhat resonant of his previous primary. Among others, Jones will be facing off against Liz Geregthy Whitmer, sister to Michigan governor and rising Democratic star Gretchen Whitmer.

Pro-Trump Lawyer Cowardly Quits Rather Than Face Disbarment Trial

MAGA lawyer Lin Wood is facing disciplinary proceedings for his role in trying to overthrow the 2020 election.

Mondaire Jones
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A pro-Trump lawyer has requested to permanently retire from practicing rather than face disciplinary proceedings that would have likely resulted in his disbarment.

Lin Wood was one of the first to promote the falsehood that the 2020 presidential election had been stolen. He was part of Donald Trump’s legal team that unsuccessfully tried to overthrow the election. Since then, he has been embroiled in legal drama, after former colleagues sued him for breach of contract and a former QAnon ally sued him for defamation. The Georgia Bar held a trial for Wood in May to determine whether to disbar him, and Wood was sanctioned in Michigan for misconduct over the election fraud lawsuits.

On Tuesday, Wood sent a letter to the Georgia state bar requesting to be “permitted to transfer to Retired Status effective immediately.” He can only transfer if the general counsel’s office grants him permission because there are two disciplinary proceedings currently against him.

“I further understand and acknowledge that if granted Retired Status I am prohibited from practicing law in this State and in any other state or jurisdiction and that I may not apply for readmission,” Wood wrote in the letter.

Wood is the latest Trump lawyer to fall. John Eastman, who also worked on the election fraud cases, is facing disbarment in California. Jenna Ellis was censured by the Colorado Bar for making false statements about the 2020 election. Sidney Powell is also facing disbarment, and was sanctioned in Michigan for alleging election fraud, the same case that saw Wood sanctioned.

Longtime Trump lawyer and ally Rudi Giuliani had his law license suspended for his efforts to overturn the election. He and Powell have been sued by voting machine companies Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic for falsely claiming the machines were involved in election rigging.

Giuliani also recently testified for about eight hours in front of special counsel Jack Smith, who has indicted Trump for mishandling classified documents and is still investigating the former president for his efforts to overturn the election. Giuliani answered questions about Trump, the January 6 attack, and Powell.

North Carolina Republicans Are Trying to Disenfranchise Democrats Again

Days after the Supreme Court ruled in favor of voting rights groups in the state, North Carolina Republicans are pushing two new voter suppression rules.

Photo by Michael Nigro/Pacific Press/LightRocket/Getty Images

While voting rights advocates celebrated the Supreme Court’s rejection of North Carolina Republicans’ illegally gerrymandered electoral map, the state’s GOP is not tapping the brakes at all on its efforts to subvert democracy and disenfranchise voters.

Republican House Speaker Tim Moore—whose name was on the rejected Supreme Court case—is leading his colleagues to pass an array of other bills that would erode voting rights and unfairly favor Republicans in state elections. Their efforts have been buttressed after obtaining a veto-proof majority in the House in April—thanks to the defection of a Democrat. Last year, the state’s Supreme Court swung from a 4–3 liberal majority to a 5–2 conservative one. Now Moore is considering two bills aimed at disenfranchising voters that recently passed the state’s Senate.

One, Senate Bill 747, would essentially get rid of same-day voter registration, leaving voters instead to have to cast provisional ballots and then follow up and verify their identities later. It would also remove a three-day grace period for votes sent by mail, requiring mail-in ballots to be received by Election Day.

Another, Senate Bill 749, would remove Democratic Governor Roy Cooper’s ability to appoint board members to state and county boards of elections, giving it to the state legislature instead. Republicans have proposed a board with eight members—four Republicans and four Democrats—that would all but guarantee gridlock. Five years ago, the state Supreme Court ruled that a similar effort to prevent the governor from managing the state board impinged “upon the Governor’s ability to faithfully execute the laws.”  

More on the state Supreme Court: After conservatives secured control, they reversed the court’s prior ruling rejecting Republicans’ gerrymandered map. In the new map approved by the Supreme Court, an evenly divided vote would produce 10 House seats for Republicans and only four to Democrats. North Carolina currently has seven Republican representatives and seven Democratic ones—a reasonable split given that the state narrowly voted for Donald Trump in 2020.

The court also reversed a prior decision surrounding a photo ID requirement. In a case (once again with Moore’s name on it), the court declared such a requirement unconstitutional; but now, a requirement demonstrably targeting minority voters is also set to be on the books, right alongside the gerrymander and aforementioned anti-democratic bills.

Right-wing election deniers like lawyer Cleta Mitchell, who supported Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election, have been working with North Carolina Republicans to try and make all this magic happen.

No Labels Could Hand the 2024 Election to Donald Trump

The self-described “nonpartisan” and “centrist” group is doing Donald Trump and the GOP a huge favor.

Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

The self-described “nonpartisan” group No Labels is hell-bent on running a third presidential candidate for 2024—and in doing so could hand the election to Donald Trump.

No Labels claims its goal is to create a space for centrists who are fed up with partisan politics and want solutions that appeal to both the right and the left. In reality, it has taken money from Republican billionaire megadonor Harlan Crow—best known for the lavish gifts and vacations he has given to Clarence Thomas—and backed the immensely unpopular former North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory. Even the group’s former allies say No Labels is “dangerous.”

The group insists that voters want someone other than Trump or Joe Biden, so it’s preparing for a third-party campaign—despite enormous pushback from political strategists.

“It is a spectacular combination of hubris and irresponsibility at a level that I have trouble even believing,” Rick Wilson, co-founder of the anti-Trump group the Lincoln Project, told The Wall Street Journal. “They’ve made a financial and personal decision to destroy Joe Biden.” (Wilson should be pretty familiar with this: The Lincoln Project is another group with lofty goals but questionable follow-through.)

If No Labels persists, it could end up giving Trump an easy win. Historically, third-party candidates have performed poorly in presidential elections, typically receiving (at best) a sliver of the electorate. The exceptions (Theodore Roosevelt in 1912; Ross Perot in 1992) prove the rule. But a third-party candidate could peel critical votes away from Biden while Trump cruises to victory on the support of his energized fans.

Another outcome could be that a third candidate prevents anyone from getting 270 electoral votes, meaning that state delegations in the House of Representatives pick the winner. Since the House is currently in Republican hands, it would almost certainly swing for Trump.

No Labels has pledged to back out if Trump does not get the GOP nomination. The current runner-up is Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who has signed some of the most extreme laws in the country, targeting women, people of color, and LGBTQ people. DeSantis also criticized the debt ceiling deal, which No Labels praised.

Elon Musk Finally Broke Twitter

Over the weekend, the social network began limiting how many posts its users could see.

Photo by Britta Pedersen/Pool/Getty Images

Rumors of Twitter’s demise have been swirling since last last year, when changes—specifically layoffs, firings, and other cuts made by Elon Musk after he purchased the company for $44 billion—began to intermittently break the site. Still, despite being clearly held together with wire and string and staffed by a skeleton crew, the social network managed to hold on for months. Twitter was worse in many ways—less reliable, with more spam, fake news, and stupid replies thanks to Musk’s new “verified” system—but it was still Twitter, more or less.

Over the weekend, Twitter stopped being Twitter. Musk was, it practically goes without saying at this point, the culprit. Early Saturday morning, users began to report that the app was restricting the number of posts they could view. For unverified users, the number was incredibly low—600, later raised to 800—which rendered the social network unusable after users hit the cap. Twitter, like all social networks, is attention-based: Its ostensible goal is for people to use it as much as possible. This is, at the moment, of existential importance given the vast amount of money the company is losing. Its new CEO, Linda Yaccarino, was brought on in part to raise money from advertising, which is dependent on view counts. Her job was already difficult, given Musk’s penchant for posting like a pimply teenage edgelord. It just got even harder.

It’s not entirely clear why Musk introduced rate limits. He has insisted that it was an effort to stop unauthorized scraping by third parties, like ChatGPT, of the site’s data. Others have speculated that the limits were imposed as a result of Twitter not paying its Amazon Web Services bill or as a desperate ploy to get more people to pay for Twitter Blue, where subscribers are able to view more posts (though still not, for unexplained reasons, an infinite number). Bluesky, the nascent competitor started by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, saw sign-ups skyrocket over the weekend and seems, for the first time, like it could become a viable alternative. Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook, is expected to launch its own Twitter clone sometime this summer.

Given the substantial financial and technological challenges it faces, Musk’s Twitter has seemed destined to crash and burn more or less since he purchased it. Over the weekend, he hastened its decline.

Is This the Weirdest Ad in American Political History?

Struggling in the polls, Ron DeSantis is leaning in to homophobia.

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Over the weekend, Ron DeSantis’s rapid response team shared a video railing against twice-impeached and twice-indicted former President Donald Trump for previous expressions of support for the LGBTQ community, proudly contrasting it with DeSantis’s outward crusade against America’s LGBTQ population.

The video begins by focusing on Trump’s remarks following the Pulse nightclub shooting, which left 49 people dead in DeSantis’s state. “I will do everything in my power to protect our LGBTQ citizens,” Trump is heard saying. The video then touches on a few instances of Trump expressing support for Caitlyn Jenner being able to use whatever bathroom she wanted and for transgender women being able to compete in Miss Universe.

After the opening, the video shared by DeSantis’s campaign nails its transition with Tyler the Creator—who once called himself “gay as fuck”—yelling “PSYCHE,” to begin the contrast between Trump’s apparently woke record to DeSantis’s hard-line stances. And the rest of the video is somehow even more insane.

The remainder of the video is set to a music track straight out of the coldest and most socially disconnected corners of YouTube and TikTok (the Andrew Tate cinematic universe). It highlights headlines about DeSantis’s relentless attack on gay people and phrases like “DeSantis is public enemy No. 1,” or “DeSantis is evil,” aimed at showing the left’s hatred of the Florida governor.

The ad is also a strange pop-culture pastiche and relies heavily on images from films and television. There’s Christian Bale as American Psycho’s Patrick Bateman (an elite Wall Street mover and shaker, fan of Donald Trump, prep school and Harvard alum, and also, serial killer, rapist, and cannibal). There’s Brad Pitt starring in Troy as the Greek hero Achilles (who, in the Iliad, has been interpreted to have gone on a vengeful rampage after the death of his gay lover, Patroclus). There’s Cilian Murphy as Thomas Shelby in Peaky Blinders (a show that depicted the rise of fascism and nationalism, as well as the literal and psychological ravages of war and violence). And, finally, there’s Leonardo DeCaprio as Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street, in which the actor portrayed a coked-up Wall Street fraudster who celebrates greed and fraud. (Tyler the Creator also once said he “one hundred percent would go gay for ’96 Leo.”)

The Florida governor has been portrayed by some as a potential moderate alternative to Trump. Some conservative groups, like Log Cabin Republicans, a national organization for “L.G.B.T conservatives and allies,” have denounced the video as “divisive and desperate,” though DeSantis’s rivals for the nomination have remained mum. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg offered a succinct rebuttal to DeSantis on Sunday:

States Enact New Laws on Controversial Issues Such as Abortion

New rules on education, transgender issues, and marijuana are among the hundreds of new measures in effect in July.

Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis

Hundreds of new state laws went into effect on July 1, with red and blue states flexing their ideological muscles on issues such as marijuana, gender-affirming care, book bans, and abortion. Here’s a rundown of some of the critical new measures now in effect:


North Carolina’s new 12-week abortion ban went into effect on Saturday, after several last-minute revisions by the state legislature.

A bill banning abortion after six weeks was supposed to go into effect in Florida on July 1, but has been delayed pending court action on the state’s current 15-week ban.

A ban on medication abortion was set to go into effect in Wyoming on Saturday, but a judge blocked it.

Transgender rights

A new law in Georgia bans gender-affirming care for minors, with medical professionals at risk of losing their licenses if they provide hormone therapy or gender-transition surgery to anyone under 18. A similar law also went into effect in South Dakota.

A federal judge temporarily blocked part of Tennessee’s law banning gender-affirming care for minors, preventing the state from enforcing a ban on hormone therapies and puberty blockers for minors. However, the portion of the law barring gender-transition surgery for individuals under 18 went into effect on Saturday.

The Kansas legislature recently overrode Governor Laura Kelly’s veto of legislation barring transgender individuals from using restrooms, locker rooms, domestic violence shelters, and rape crisis centers in accordance with their gender identities. That law went into effect on Saturday.


Several of Governor Ron DeSantis’s priorities are now the law of the land in Florida, just in time for him to campaign on the new laws in his presidential stump speech. The state’s “Don’t Say Period” bill went into effect on Saturday, banning instruction on menstruation, sexually transmitted infections, and sexuality before sixth grade. Instructors teaching sex education must also focus on abstinence outside of marriage and teach the “benefits of monogamous heterosexual marriage.” Moreover, teachers will no longer be able to ask a student’s preferred pronouns or refer to a student by their preferred pronouns.

School libraries in Iowa will need to remove books with “sex acts,” according to a new state law that also bans instruction related to sexuality and gender identity until sixth grade.

A new law in North Carolina also allows individuals to carry concealed firearms on school grounds.

Criminal justice

A near-complete ban on no-knock warrants went into effect in Minnesota on Saturday, after a SWAT officer shot and killed a man during a raid with such a warrant last year.

California now permits former criminal offenders to seal their records if they have not committed another felony four years after finishing their sentences.

Maryland became the twenty-first state to legalize recreational marijuana on July 1, and Connecticut residents 21 and older can now grow up to six cannabis plants.

Other notable laws

A law banning TikTok on state-owned devices went into effect in Georgia on Saturday. Indiana repealed a law banning throwing stars, which are once again legal except for use on school properties. Nevada increased its penalties on drunk driving, Iowa now allows teenagers to work longer hours, and Mississippi formally designated the blueberry as its state fruit.

Donald Trump’s One Weird Trick to Win the GOP Primary

It’s getting indicted. Twice.

Trump gives a thumbs up sign as he leaves a rally.
Donald Trump in 2020

Donald Trump has been indicted twice this year: once in April for hush-money payments sent during the 2016 election and again in June for mishandling of classified documents. Rather than make him a political pariah, the charges could send him straight to the Republican presidential nomination.

Republican consultants and activists believe that the indictments have energized Trump’s supporters, and even people who had until now been undecided, The Messenger reported Monday. The outlet looked specifically at Iowa, which is anticipated to set the stage for the rest of the Republican race.

Previously, many Iowans had backed Florida Governor Ron DeSantis or South Carolina Senator Tim Scott. But since the indictments, voters have rallied around Trump.

“The majority of Republicans here are for Trump after this frickin’ legal lynching. That’s all it is,” state resident Merle Miller told The Messenger. “People here take the indictment personally.”

Trump has capitalized on the indictments, using them to stoke outrage—and rake in donations. His campaign announced in mid-June that it had raised $6.6 million in the week after his second indictment, in which the Department of Justice alleged that he had stored highly sensitive documents relating to national security in a bathroom. He raised more than double that in the days after he was indicted in April.

The former president has also surged in the polls since the second indictment. An NBC poll released on June 25 found that Trump had 51 percent support, a substantial lead over DeSantis, the current runner-up.

It is, of course, still nearly a year until the Iowa caucuses. Any number of things could change by then. But it’s safe to say that Trump has not been hurt by the indictments nearly as much as some expected.

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