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GOP Impeachment Fiasco Continues: They Turn Against Their Own Witness

Republicans suddenly really don’t want to hear from Hunter Biden’s business partner.

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House Oversight Chair James Comer

Representative James Comer on Thursday refused to let Democrats introduce testimony from one of his own star witnesses as evidence in the impeachment inquiry hearing into Joe Biden.

House Republicans held their first hearing on Biden’s alleged corruption. They have for months accused him of wrongdoing via his connection to his son Hunter’s business dealings. But they have yet to provide any actual evidence. The House Oversight Committee, which Comer chairs, had previously interviewed Hunter’s ex-business partner Devon Archer, touting his testimony as the thing that would finally break the dam open.

But when Democratic Representative Daniel Goldman tried to introduce Archer’s testimony as evidence, Comer spoke over him and tried to recognize another Republican to speak instead.

Goldman asked if they weren’t allowed to make points of order, to which Comer replied, “You keep speaking about no evidence. Why don’t you all just listen and learn?”

“I’m trying to introduce evidence!” Goldman snapped.

Republicans released Archer’s testimony in August, and his comments completely debunk everything the GOP has claimed about Biden and his son. Archer repeatedly stated that Biden was never involved in his son’s business and Hunter never asked his father to step in.

Archer said he was “not aware of any” wrongdoing by the president, and said he disagreed with the allegation that Biden accepted a bribe. So it’s really no wonder Comer is desperate to keep that testimony out of public record.

Watch: GOP Congressman Melts Down Trying to Explain Biden Corruption “Evidence”

Please do not question Representative Jason Smith about any of his claims, OK?

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Representative Jason Smith struggled to explain how Republicans’ “evidence” actually shows that Joe Biden is guilty of corruption.

Republicans held their first hearing Thursday for the impeachment inquiry into Biden. They have for months accused him of wrongdoing via his connection to his son Hunter’s business dealings. But they have yet to provide any actual evidence.

Smith, who chairs the House Ways and Means Committee, sought to connect those dots in a Wednesday press conference. In particular, he cited a WhatsApp message Hunter allegedly sent in June 2017 to a business associate, saying he would not “sign over my family’s brand.” (Which, despite Republicans’ claims, actually appears to imply that Hunter was trying to keep his family and work separate.)

When NBC reporter Ryan Nobles pointed out that 2017 was well after Biden had left the office of vice president, and well before he had declared his presidential campaign, Smith short-circuited.

Smith stumbled over his words, asked Nobles to repeat the question, and finally accused the reporter of being biased.

“Apparently, you’ll never believe us,” Smith said before moving on. He failed to actually answer the question.

Republicans continue to insist that they have proof of Biden’s corruption. But not only do they repeatedly fail to produce it, they sometimes even accidentally admit that they have none. One of their own witnesses in the impeachment inquiry hearing said Thursday that nothing they have “meets the standard” of an actual impeachment.

Gavin Newsom Pulverizes DeSantis’s Loopy Lies About California Crime

Gavin Newsom is not interested in Ron DeSantis’s claims on California, given all that’s happening in Florida.

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California Governor Gavin Newsom

California Governor Gavin Newsom is hitting back at Ron DeSantis’s exaggerated claims about California crime.

During the Republican presidential debate Wednesday night, which was held in Simi Valley, California, DeSantis claimed that he had heard several stories pointing to a crime increase in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

“Just being in Southern California over the last couple of days, my wife and I have met three people who have been mugged on the street,” he said. 

After the debate, Newsom quickly fired back and invited DeSantis to be real about “crime rates in his own backyard.”

“This may be an opportunity, I appreciate, to look up ‘Jacksonville, Florida,’ and he may want to familiarize himself with ‘Miami, Florida’ and his homicide rates, which are 100 percent higher than San Francisco,” Newsom said.

DeSantis has been known to exaggerate crime rates in blue states while making factually inaccurate statements about the reality of crime in Florida.

It’s hard to do a proper comparison of crime between California and Florida, in part because of the latter’s flawed reporting methods. But in 2022, San Francisco had 56 homicides, while Jacksonville had 154 and Miami had 132, according to the Major Cities Police Violent Crime Report. And in general, violent crime—including the murder rate—is decreasing nationwide.

Newsom also took a swing at the Republican narrative that crime runs rampant in liberal states.

“I think people are getting a little exhausted by the fact that we’re focusing on New York’s crime rate and not the crime in these other Republican-led cities in Republican states,” Newsom said.

“Crime is a real issue, but I find the hypocrisy, the unwillingness to be honest with the American people, and the unwillingness to take responsibility—Ron DeSantis, take responsibility for his own crime rates in his own major cities. I find that curious, not surprising,” he added, calling out DeSantis directly.

Republicans’ Key “Biden Corruption” Witness Torches Their Entire Claims

If you want to hold a big impeachment inquiry into Joe Biden, maybe make sure your witnesses are on the same page first.

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House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer

Republicans’ own witness in their impeachment inquiry into Joe Biden completely destroyed their claims multiple times on Thursday.

The House GOP held its first hearing on Biden’s alleged corruption. Republicans have insisted for months that the president is guilty of criminal wrongdoing, but they have yet to produce any actual evidence of their claims.

As one of their first witnesses, Republicans called on Jonathan Turley, a conservative legal scholar who previously served as a Justice Department tax attorney. Turley was set to act as a content witness to help analyze the Biden family’s business dealings—but even he admitted there’s not enough evidence.

“In fact, I do not believe that the current evidence would support articles of an impeachment,” he told the hearing.

Turley had previously expressed this belief in written testimony submitted ahead of the hearing. “I do not believe that the evidence currently meets the standard of a high crime and misdemeanor needed for an article of impeachment,” he wrote.

Turley also said in his written statement that he did believe it was “warranted” for the House to investigate potential connections between Biden and his son Hunter’s business dealings. But Republicans have been doing just that for months, and they still haven’t found proof linking the president to Hunter Biden’s work.

A second Republican witness, forensic accountant Bruce Dubinsky, shared a similar conclusion. “I am not here today to even suggest that there was corruption, fraud, or any wrongdoing,” he told Congress.

“In my opinion, more information needs to be gathered and assessed before I would make such an assessment.”

As Oversight Committee Ranking Member Jamie Raskin pointed out, “If the Republicans had a smoking gun, or even a dripping water pistol, they would be presenting it today.”

“But they’ve got nothing on Joe Biden,” he said in opening remarks.

This story has been updated.

Everything About Trump’s Michigan Speech Was a Stunt—Including the Workers

Here’s who actually showed up to that Trump speech where he pretended to care about autoworkers.

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Donald Trump made a big show of appealing to union autoworkers at a campaign event in Michigan, but it turns out that none may have even attended.

Trump opted to give a speech Wednesday night at Drake Enterprises, a nonunion factory, instead of participating in the Republican debate. Drake management had invited him to appear, and the United Auto Workers union—which is currently on strike—does not represent the Drake workforce. About 400 to 500 people attended the speech, even though Drake only employs about 150, The Detroit News reported.

It’s unclear how many union workers, or even autoworkers, attended Trump’s speech. One person held a sign that said “union members for Trump” but told reporter Craig Mauger she wasn’t in the union. Another person held a sign that said “auto workers for Trump” but admitted he wasn’t an autoworker.

Undeterred, Trump said he supports the ongoing UAW strike for fair wages but warned that the “current negotiations don’t mean as much as you think.”

The real danger, he insisted, is electric vehicles. He described the transition from gas engines to electric as “a transition to hell” and said the auto industry “is being assassinated.”

His speech stands in stark contrast to the approach of Joe Biden, who on Tuesday became the first sitting U.S. president to ever join a picket line.

Trump is no stranger to filling a room with fake supporters. Former Trump aide Corey Lewandowski admitted in 2021 that they had paid actors to attend Trump’s first campaign launch in 2015.

Tim Scott Suggests Slavery Wasn’t as Bad as Welfare for Black Americans

The South Carolina senator delivered a very embarrassing talking point during the Republican presidential debate.

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A lot of deplorable things were said during the Republican debate on Wednesday night, but this comment from Republican candidate Tim Scott may take the cake.

During the debate Scott argued that welfare assistance was harder than slavery for Black Americans.

“Black families survived slavery!” he exclaimed. “We survived poll taxes and literacy tests.”

“We survived discrimination being woven into the laws of our country,” he added, in a line that for a moment sounded like he might actually be acknowledging systemic racism.

“What was hard to survive was Johnson’s Great Society, where they decided to put money—where they decided to take the Black father out of the household to get a check in the mail.”

Johnson’s Great Society, launched in 1964, was one of the most significant federal social welfare programs in U.S. history. It greatly expanded welfare policy by writing Medicare and Medicaid into U.S. law, increasing Social Security benefits, and generally expanding assistance to the elderly and the poor.

That Scott had harsher words for welfare assistance than for slavery is not just an overt ahistorical reach. Frankly, it’s embarrassing.

Nikki Haley Delivers Absolutely Savage Burn of Vivek Ramaswamy at GOP Debate

The Republican presidential debate devolved into chaos once again.

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Vivek Ramaswamy and Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley finally snapped at Vivek Ramaswamy during the Republican debate Wednesday night.

Ramaswamy warned about the dangers of social media but also said he was trying to connect with younger voters through TikTok. Ramaswamy joined TikTok two weeks ago, just days after he referred to the app as “digital fentanyl.”

Haley tore into him for his flip—and for his talking points in general. “Honestly, every time I hear you, I feel a little bit dumber for what you say,” she said.

She described TikTok as “one of the most dangerous social media apps” and called Ramaswamy untrustworthy.

But before you give her too much credit: Haley’s attack on Ramaswamy is particularly ironic considering the highly complimentary blurb she wrote for his book Woke, Inc., which was published in 2021.

Republicans love to hate on TikTok, warning that the Chinese-owned app is a threat to national security and data privacy. But the app is still hugely popular among young people. Restricting TikTok in any way could actually backfire on lawmakers and alienate younger voters.

Ron DeSantis’s Painfully Weird Smile Goes Viral During GOP Debate Once Again

The Florida governor has once again become a meme for his weird smile during the Republican debate.

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It’s a big night for DeSantis, and he’s putting on a smile—a creepy facsimile of one, anyway.

At the second Republican presidential debate on Wednesday, Ron Desantis once again tried to smile normally and once again failed.

Viewers watching the debate couldn’t help but notice that when speaking about vetoing “bloating spending bills,” DeSantis plastered a faltering smile on his face, which quickly fell into a disturbed grimace.

DeSantis had the exact same problem during the first Republican debate last month, when his failed attempt to smile quickly became a viral meme.

DeSantis has demonstrated a slew of robotic behavior, from short-circuiting before the press, to seeming like a stock photo model in a series of pictures from 2015 meant to communicate that he was just a regular human man.

At this point, not every viewer is buying that the awkward DeSantis can even hold a conversation.

Joe Biden Is Relishing the Trump Criticism During the Republican Debate

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had some harsh words for Donald Trump during the Republican debate. Joe Biden agreed.

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Joe Biden used Republicans’ own words Wednesday to take aim at their party’s 2024 front-runner.

Trump once again skipped the Republican debate, but his presence was still felt. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis finally found an ounce of spine and called Trump out for not attending the debate.

“He owes it to you to defend his record, where they added $7.8 trillion to the debt. That set the stage for the inflation that we have now,” DeSantis said to applause.

Biden had a simple and hilarious response.

Republicans repeatedly blame Biden for the high debt and inflation. They claim that some of his signature policies, such as to provide financial aid during the pandemic or the Build Back Better Act, are the main contributors.

In reality, Republicans raised the debt ceiling multiple times under Trump. And inflation is high in part because Trump made the U.S. economy weaker.

Biden Throws Shade at Republicans in Perfectly Timed Ad Before GOP Debate

The timing could not have been better on this one.

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Joe Biden aired an ad on Fox News just 10 minutes before the beginning of Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate.

Just moments before the debate, the pro-Biden political ad targeted what was sure to be a central issue on the debate stage: jobs.

The ad clearly stated all that Trump failed to do for workers and the U.S. economy

“He says he stands with auto workers, but as president, Donald Trump passed tax breaks for his rich friends while automakers shuttered their plants, and Michigan lost manufacturing jobs,” the ad said directly to Republican voters tuning in to watch the debate.

Trump is noticeably absent from the debate.

The ad also highlighted what Biden has done for the economy, including increasing wages, emphasizing that he has followed through on his commitment to support workers. 

“Joe Biden doesn’t just talk, he delivers,” the ad said. On Tuesday, Biden visited striking auto workers on the picket line in Michigan, a first for a sitting president.