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Vivek Ramaswamy Is Trying to Use His Campaign to Dodge a Legal Battle

Sound familiar?

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Vivek Ramaswamy is trying to use his presidential campaign as an excuse to wiggle out of legal proceedings against him.

Ramaswamy was a board member of both Roivant Sciences, which he founded in 2014, and Sumitovant Biopharma until earlier this year. Sumitovant successfully negotiated to acquire Roivant subsidiary Myovant in October 2022. Under the deal, which was completed in March, Sumitovant agreed to pay $27 per share for all outstanding Myovant shares.

But soon after, the investment management firm Alpine Partners, a now-former Myovant shareholder, launched an appraisal rights lawsuit to determine that it and other shareholders had been fairly compensated for their stock. Alpine requested that Ramaswamy testify and provide materials about “how Sumitovant valued Myovant at the time of the merger and the negotiating process that led to the merger.” Alpine’s subpoena set Ramaswamy’s testimony for June 30; the filing also gave him a 30-day grace period to comply.

Ramaswamy responded on July 27, saying that he couldn’t possibly testify because he is too busy running for president.

“As a candidate for President of the United States, I must frequently travel across the United States to campaign, make speeches, give media interviews, and meet with voters,” he said in a court filing. “Consequently, I am often away from home, and when I am home it is often not until late in the evening after a full campaign day.”

“The subpoena request and resulting discovery would therefore constitute an undue burden and will materially affect my ability to run for higher office.”

Ramaswamy also insisted that he does not have “any material knowledge of the transaction that is the basis of the underlying Appraisal Proceeding.”

The judge has yet to rule on Ramaswamy’s motion. But Ramaswamy clearly thinks that he is above the law now that he is running for president.

Ramaswamy isn’t the only person using his campaign to avoid legal trouble. It seems he has taken the cue from Donald Trump, who is facing a mountain of lawsuits. He has repeatedly tried to set trial dates for well after the election, hoping that he will win and thus be immune from multiple cases.

DOJ Files Discrimination Lawsuit Against SpaceX, Cites Elon’s Own Tweet As Proof

The Justice Department is suing SpaceX for discriminating against refugees and asylees—and using the CEO’s own words as proof.

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Elon Musk’s reckless tweeting has once again come back to bite him.

The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against SpaceX on Wednesday, alleging that the company discriminated against refugees and asylees. And it cited one of Musk’s own tweets as proof.

In June 2020, Musk tweeted that “US law requires at least a green card to be hired at SpaceX, as rockets are considered advanced weapons technology.”

The lawsuit lists this tweet as just one of a few public discriminatory statements that SpaceX’s CEO has made over the years. The lawsuit alleges that these public statements were intended to discourage refugees and asylees from applying to SpaceX. Those who did end up applying were not fairly considered, according to the lawsuit.

According to the suit, SpaceX repeatedly wrongly stated in job postings and public statements that the company could “only hire U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents” from at least September 2018 to May 2022.

The lawsuit also alleges that SpaceX “wrongly claimed” that U.S. export laws prevented it from hiring refugees and asylees. “Export control laws and regulations do not prohibit or restrict employers from hiring asylees and refugees; those laws treat asylees and refugees just like U.S. citizens,” the lawsuit says.

The investigation into discrimination was launched in May 2020 by the Department of Justice’s Immigrant and Employee Rights section, but was stalled significantly by SpaceX’s unwillingness to cooperate. SpaceX tried to slow down the DOJ’s investigation and only provided requested documents a full year after they were first requested.

Raffensperger Was Just Ordered to Testify Against Mark Meadows in Georgia

Donald Trump’s former chief of staff is facing a tough upcoming hearing.

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Mark Meadows

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, one of the few Republicans to stand firm against Donald Trump’s claims of election fraud, was subpoenaed Thursday to testify in a hearing for one of Trump’s co-conspirators indicted in the Peach State.

Mark Meadows served as White House chief of staff at the end of Trump’s presidency. He was charged alongside Trump and 17 other co-defendants with felony racketeering for trying to overturn Georgia’s 2020 presidential election results. Meadows has requested to move his case to federal court, arguing that his job as a federal employee makes him immune to state charges. A district court judge will hear Meadows’s request on Monday.

The prosecuting attorney, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, issued a subpoena Thursday for Raffensperger to testify at the hearing. She also subpoenaed Frances Watson, the chief investigator into whether Georgia’s election results were fraudulent. They were not.

Potential testimony from Raffensperger and Watson does not bode well for Meadows. Meadows organized and participated in the now-infamous phone call during which Trump begged Raffensperger to “find” 11,780 votes—the exact amount needed to flip the state’s election results to Trump.

But Raffensperger refused to cave then, and he has since resolutely maintained that his state’s election results are legitimate. “The most basic principles of a strong democracy are accountability and respect for the Constitution and rule of law,” he said after Willis issued the indictment. “You either have it, or you don’t.”

Meadows also traveled to Georgia in December 2020 and tried to watch ballots being audited for potential fraud. Watson was one of multiple people to whom Meadows spoke and who stopped him from entering the place where the audit was being carried out.

The indictment says that Meadows arranged a call between Trump and Watson, during which Trump insisted he had won the election and told Watson, “When the right answer comes out you’ll be praised.” The document also alleges that Meadows texted Watson asking her if it was possible to “speed up” the audit so that it would be completed before Congress certified the election results.

A Top Israeli Official Finally Admitted the Truth About Justice in Israel

Finally, the truth about Israel’s two-tiered system of justice

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir

A top Israeli official has admitted that Israeli rights take priority over the rights of Palestinians.

Israel’s far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir confessed on Wednesday that he believes his family’s rights are more important than the freedom of movement for Palestinians in the West Bank—exposing the truth of the two-tiered system of justice.

“Sorry Mohammad, but that’s just the reality,” Ben-Gvir told journalist Mohammad Magadli on Channel 12 News. “My right, the right of my wife and my children to move around Judea and Samaria is more important than freedom of movement for the Arabs,” he added, using another name for the occupied West Bank.

Ben-Gvir’s entitled statement came after Magadli asked him about violent crime and terrorism and the Israeli government’s failure to address it.

This isn’t the first time Ben-Givir has expressed anti-Palestinian and anti-Arab views: He has been convicted of eight charges for inciting racism and supporting Kach, a right-wing anti-Palestinian terrorist organization in Israel.

Donald Trump Spent the Republican Debate Musing About Civil War

Asked about civil war in an interview with Tucker Carlson, Trump began to fondly recall the January 6 insurrection.

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Rather than debate his fellow Republican presidential candidates, Donald Trump appeared to condone civil war during an interview with Tucker Carlson.

Trump did not attend the first Republican presidential debate on Wednesday night. Instead, he released a pretaped interview with Carlson designed to steal the spotlight from the other candidates (and Fox News). At one point, Carlson asked Trump if he believed the United States is headed for “civil war.”

“There’s tremendous passion, and there’s tremendous love,” Trump said, before launching into praise for the people who rioted on January 6. He also lied that he had told the mob to go “peacefully and patriotically.”

“People in that crowd said it was the most beautiful day they’ve ever experienced. There was love in that crowd, there was love and unity. I have never seen such spirit, and such passion, and such love. And I’ve also never seen simultaneously and from the same people such hatred of what they’ve done to our country.”

Trump has now tacitly condoned civil war by portraying his supporters’ feelings as “passion” instead of “sedition.” This isn’t the first time that Trump appears to have encouraged violence among his followers. He notoriously told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by” during the September 2020 presidential debate. And many of the people who participated in the January 6 insurrection said they did so because Trump had issued a call to arms.

Trump spent the rest of the interview attacking his Republican opponents, whining about all of the indictments against him, and warning people about the dangers of mosquitos.

Trump Crowns Vivek Ramaswamy the Debate Winner … for Praising Him

Vivek Ramaswamy loves lavishing praise on Donald Trump, who he’s supposedly running against.

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Vivek Ramaswamy went out of his way to suck up to Donald Trump during the first Republican presidential debate, and it seems to have worked.

Trump praised Ramaswamy’s performance in a Truth Social post early Thursday morning and included a clip of Ramaswamy calling Trump, “the best president of the twenty-first century.”   

In the post, Trump expressed his pleasure with Ramaswamy. “This answer gave Vivek Ramaswamy a big WIN in the debate because of a thing called TRUTH. Thank you Vivek!” Trump wrote.

Ramaswamy snagging the Trump-bestowed title of winner has only fanned the flames of speculation around whether Ramaswamy is only running to secure a spot as Trump’s running mate in 2024.

During the debate, when the candidates were asked whether they would support Trump as a nominee even if he were convicted, Ramaswamy was the first to shoot his hand in the air, while other candidates seemed a little more hesitant. Still, seven of the eight Republican candidates ultimately raised their hands, showing just how much power Trump still has over the Republican Party.  

Trump has of course not yet made any formal indication of whom he would consider as his pick for vice president if he does snag the nomination, which it currently seems like he will. If Ramaswamy isn’t tapped by Trump, all of his cringy flattery, 9/11 denying, and conspiracy-theory spreading may have been for nothing.

Either way, how do Trump’s boots taste, Vivek?

Hours Before His Arrest, Donald Trump Switches Up His Legal Team—Again

Trump is hoping the last-minute Hail Mary will save him.

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Just hours before he is due to surrender to authorities in Fulton County, Georgia, Donald Trump has replaced his top defense lawyer.

Trump and 18 co-defendants have been charged with felony racketeering for their role in efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia. The majority of the co-defendants, including Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani, John Eastman, Sidney Powell, and Kenneth Chesebro, have already turned themselves in. Trump is set to surrender Thursday evening.

But Thursday morning, Trump added Atlanta defense lawyer Steve Sadow to his team, The New York Times reported. Sadow will replace Drew Findling, who was one of the key negotiators behind setting Trump’s $200,000 bond.

Sadow is reportedly considered to be one of Atlanta’s top criminal defense lawyers. He has experience working on racketeering cases and defending reality television celebrities. In one of his previous cases, he represented the rapper Gunna, who had been charged with racketeering. In another case, Sadow represented Howard K. Stern, who was accused of conspiring to give prescription drugs to his then-girlfriend Anna Nicole Smith, which contributed to her death. Stern was ultimately found guilty.

It’s not unusual for Trump either to change up his legal team or to throw last-minute Hail Marys. A day before he was arraigned the first time in New York for business fraud, Trump switched up his legal team and hired white-collar criminal defense lawyer Todd Blanche as lead counsel.

Trump’s need for legal representation is growing rapidly, as his legal battles continue to pile up. In addition to the indictments in New York and Georgia, Trump has also been indicted in Florida for mishandling classified documents and in Washington for trying to overturn the 2020 election. He has been found liable of sexual assault and defamation, and he has another defamation lawsuit set to go to trial in January.

Good luck to all those lawyers getting paid, though. Giuliani recently flew to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort to beg his employer to pay for Giuliani’s services—and Trump still refused to pay up.

Trump Won the Republican Debate He Didn’t Even Attend

Nearly every Republican candidate on stage said they’d support Trump for president, even if he is convicted.

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Six of the eight Republican presidential candidates said during the debate Wednesday that they would support Donald Trump if he got the nomination, even if he were convicted in one of his many legal battles, a sign of how much influence he still has over the party.

The eight leading presidential candidates, minus frontrunner Trump, took the stage in Milwaukee. When moderator Brett Baier referred to Trump as “the elephant not in the room,” the crowd cheered.

Baier then asked the candidates to raise their hand if they would still support a convicted Trump as nominee, reminding them that they signed a pledge to support whoever wins the party nomination.

Doug Burgum, Tim Scott, Nikki Haley, Vivek Ramaswamy, and Ron DeSantis all raised their hands. So did Mike Pence, despite the fact that an angry mob of Trump supporters wanted to hang him during the January 6 insurrection.

Chris Christie also half-heartedly raised his hand, but later clarified that it was in disapproval. “Here’s the bottom line: Someone has got to stop normalizing this conduct,” Christie said. “Whether or not you believe the criminal charges are right or wrong, the conduct is beneath the office of president of the United States.” His comments were met with both cheers and boos.

Asa Hutchinson also did not raise his hand and said Trump has been “morally disqualified from being president again.”

Still, the majority’s weird hand-raising is a sign of how powerful Trump still is. He isn’t even at the debate, he is facing 91 charges and will be arrested for the fourth time later this week, and yet everyone is still too afraid to criticize him.

This article has been updated to clarify that Chris Christie raising his hand was in disapproval, not support, of Trump.

Chris Christie Delivers Absolutely Amazing Burn of Vivek Ramaswamy

Unfortunately, you have to hand it to him.

Chris Christie
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Chris Christie had the first zinger of the Republican debate Wednesday night, attacking Vivek Ramaswamy for being like Barack Obama.

The eight leading presidential candidates, minus front-runner Donald Trump, took the stage in Milwaukee. As Ramaswamy tried to portray himself as an outsider and a dark horse, Christie took aim.

“I’ve had enough already tonight of a guy who sounds like ChatGPT standing up here,” the former New Jersey governor said. “The last person in one of these debates … who stood in the middle of the stage and said, ‘What’s a skinny guy with an odd last name doing up here?’ was Barack Obama, and I’m afraid we’re dealing with the same type of amateur standing on the stage tonight.”

While this was probably the most devastating comparison Christie could have made, it is also highly inaccurate. Obama is ideologically open-minded. Ramaswamy is a 9/11 denier who is mainly interested in battling “wokeness,” taking away rights, and, apparently, caving to Russia and China.

Republican Debate Bingo

Play Bingo with The New Republic as we watch the Republican Party’s first presidential debate.

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Eight presidential candidates have qualified for the Republican Party’s first primary debate on Wednesday evening.

Sure, the debate might not mean much when Donald Trump, the party’s front-runner, is skipping out on the whole thing. Still, it is a chance for the American public to hear directly from candidates on what they really stand for.

If you are watching the Republican debate, join us in a game of Bingo.

The New Republic