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New Jersey GOP Candidate Blames Poop-Smearing Incident on... Obama

Joseph Viso Jr. had an inane explanation when admitting to his history of poop-smearing.

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Republican candidate for New Jersey State Assembly Joseph Viso Jr. confessed to once smearing feces on a children’s day care center—but he says Barack Obama is to blame.

Viso, an electrician with a lengthy rap sheet, took a page out of a toddler’s handbook when, in an escalating feud with a day care center located adjacent to his electrical company, he smeared poop on the business’s doors.

When asked about the incident, which occurred in 2009, Viso said he was angry because he believed that employees of the day care, called Children’s Studio, were getting his employees’ cars ticketed anytime they parked near the business. “Those people harassed my men every day,” Viso told the New Jersey Globe.  

The police report of the incident noted that Viso Electric, his electrical company, would often blast music with offensive lyrics next to the playground of the day care center.

While Viso admitted the act was wrong, he also tried to explain his strange behavior in an oddly political and completely inane way.

“I was a young man. It was a horrible time, and I made a mistake,” he said. “Obama came into office the year before.”

Viso was about 38 years old at the time of the poop-smearing incident.

After the incident, Viso pleaded guilty to criminal mischief charges and was fined $250. Viso has a lengthy record of criminal convictions on federal and state gun and drug charges, including possessing enough methylone to make five million “Molly” or ecstasy tablets in 2016, and possessing a sawed-off shotgun in proximity to a school in 2014.

The Attack on Wisconsin’s Governor Perfectly Sums Up Our Gun Problem

The attempted attack on Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers captures the problem with guns in this country—and how it helps foment political violence.

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers at the virtual Democratic National Convention
Melina Mara/Pool/Getty Images

A man tried this week to attack Democratic Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, twice in one day, first with a handgun and then with an assault rifle after posting bail, a state spokesperson said Thursday.

The man, who has not been identified, entered the state Capitol on Wednesday at 2 p.m. with a holstered handgun. He did not have a concealed carry permit, spokesperson Tatyana Warrick told the AP.

The man demanded to see Evers, who was not in the building at the time. The man was then arrested for openly carrying a firearm in the Capitol without a permit. He was booked into prison but later posted bail.

Then, at 9 p.m., the man returned to the Capitol with an assault-style rifle, again demanding to see the governor. The building had closed to the public three hours earlier. The man was then arrested again. Madison police said Thursday that the man had been hospitalized as well.

This is the second time in as many years that Evers has been targeted by a gunman. In 2022, Evers was on the hit list of a gunman who is accused of fatally shooting a retired Wisconsin county judge. The list also included Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Senator Mitch McConnell.

The attempted attack on Evers Wednesday perfectly sums up two rapidly growing issues in the United States. It’s terrifying that someone was able to procure multiple guns and carry them around without a permit.

There are also increasing attacks on political officials. Many of these attacks can be linked directly back to violent rhetoric from Donald Trump and his allies. Whitmer, who was the target of a kidnapping plot, and Evers are both Democrats who have championed more progressive causes.

Evers used a partial veto of the state budget in July to guarantee funding increases for public schools for the next four centuries. And Whitmer has successfully increased protections for abortion access and labor unions.

Nancy Mace All but Brags About Her Hypocritical House Speaker Vote

After voting to oust Kevin McCarthy, Representative Nancy Mace is doing the exact same thing she once criticized Matt Gaetz for.

Representative Nancy Mace
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Representative Nancy Mace

Nancy Mace was called out for trying to fundraise off voting to vacate the House speaker, despite previously criticizing colleagues for doing the same.

Mace was one of eight Republicans who voted to oust Kevin McCarthy as speaker and throw the House in disarray. Since then, she has tried aggressively to fundraise off her vote. She even asked for campaign donations while doing an interview inside the Capitol—a violation of House rules.

CNN host Kaitlan Collins called Mace out on the fundraising during a Wednesday night interview. Collins played an interview clip of Mace from January, during the seemingly interminable rounds of votes for speaker that McCarthy ultimately won.

“Matt Gaetz is a fraud. Every time he voted against Kevin McCarthy last week, he sent out a fundraising email,” Mace said in the interview. “What you saw last week was a constitutional process diminished by those kinds of political actions.”

When Collins asked Mace to explain her shifting stance, the congresswoman had no good response. Instead, she cast herself as a victim.

Mace said that unlike Gaetz, she has not been fundraising off the vote “every step of the way.”

“I made the decision to fundraise over the last 24 hours because of the threats that I have received over fundraising and money drying up,” she said. “The establishment is coming after me.”

This kind of a flip-flop is typical for Mace, who will often say one thing and then vote in the completely opposite direction. In July, she said it was an “asshole move” to use the defense budget to bar the Pentagon from reimbursing service members who travel for abortions. Just hours later, she voted to include that amendment in the budget bill.

As Collins pointed out, Mace also joined Steve Bannon’s podcast on Wednesday, despite voting in 2021 to hold him in contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with a subpoena from the January 6 committee. This is not the first time she has joined as a guest on the podcast.

Republicans Are So Mad They’re Airing All of Matt Gaetz’s Dirty Laundry

Republicans are finally turning against the far-right representative after he ousted Kevin McCarthy.

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Representative Matt Gaetz

Republicans, livid that Matt Gaetz plunged the House of Representatives into turmoil, have begun to air the worst bits of the Florida Republican’s dirty laundry.

Gaetz introduced a motion to vacate the House speaker on Monday, saying he was frustrated by Kevin McCarthy’s decision to pass a continuing resolution and keep the government open. The next day, Gaetz led seven other Republicans to break ranks and vote with Democrats, ousting McCarthy. The House is now scrambling to find a new speaker, and Gaetz, the man who started it all, has no plan whatsoever.

Marc Short, who served as former Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, brushed off the idea that Gaetz was actually upset about increased government spending with a horrifying joke.

“Matt Gaetz, to say he came here as a fiscal crusader, it’s more likely he came here for the teenage interns on Capitol Hill, to be honest,” Short said Wednesday night on CNN.

Host Jake Tapper did not question the statement at all but let Short continue on about how Gaetz keeps voting for federal spending bills.

Short was referring to a 2020 investigation into allegations that Gaetz had sex with a 17-year-old. The Department of Justice dropped the investigation earlier this year.

Senator Markwayne Mullin also referred to that investigation, pointing out that the media ignored Gaetz after the accusations first broke and no Republicans came to his defense.

We had all seen the videos he was showing on the House floor, that all of us had walked away, of the girls that he had slept with,” Mullin told CNN’s Manu Raju on Tuesday. “He’d brag about how he would crush E.D. medicine and chase it with an energy drink so he could go all night.”

“No one defended him,” said Mullin, “and then no one on the media would give him the time of the day. All of a sudden, he found fame because he opposed the speaker of the House back in November, and he’s always stayed there. He was never gonna leave until he got this last moment of fame.”

Other Republicans have also accused Gaetz of using the speakership debacle just to get attention. Representative Matt Lawler called Gaetz “disgraceful” and called for him to be expelled from the Republican conference. Representative David Joyce said Thursday he would support such a move.

Some members of the GOP were already weighing whether to expel Gaetz from Congress should the Ethics Committee find him guilty of sexual misconduct, illegal drug use, and other wrongdoings.

“You Can Kiss My Ass”: Pretty Much Everyone Hates Matt Gaetz Now

The far-right representative has plunged the House into chaos—and turned his own party against him.

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Representative Matt Gaetz

Matt Gaetz more or less singlehandedly plunged the House of Representatives into chaos, and his GOP colleagues are furious with him for it.

Gaetz introduced a motion to vacate the speakership on Monday. The next day, he led seven other Republicans to break ranks and vote with Democrats to oust Kevin McCarthy. The House is now scrambling to find a new speaker, and a clear front-runner has not yet emerged. Gaetz, the man who started it all, has no plan whatsoever.

And House Republicans are over it.

“I think Matt Gaetz is a disgraceful human being,” Matt Lawler told reporters Wednesday. “I think he has certainly alienated lots of people left and right.”

Lawler added he thought Gaetz should be kicked out of the Republican conference altogether.

Gaetz’s fellow Florida Republicans think he is “divisive. Disrespectful. Selfish,” not to mention desperate for attention, according to Politico.

“He’s about clicks,” Carlos Giménez said. “He’s about how many cameras he can get shoved in his face, and he’s a historical figure because he caused for the first time in history and all that. I think he gets off on that.”

Many Republicans said it was “disgusting” and “inappropriate” that Gaetz also began to fundraise off kicking McCarthy out, all while bringing the party no closer to achieving its legislative goals.

“At the end of the day, we’re doing this, we’re not passing appropriations bills,” Michael Waltz said of the vote to vacate. “We’re not dealing with the border. We’re not dealing with inflation.”

Giménez also warned that Gaetz has “very few friends”—and the list seems to be shrinking. Chip Roy and Gaetz have been staunch anti-McCarthy allies from the beginning, both holding out against the California Republican during the votes for speaker in January. When Gaetz replaced Roy on the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government in February, Roy said he was glad to hand the spot over to “my friend.”

But Roy is singing a very different tune now, lashing out Tuesday at Gaetz and the other Republicans who voted against McCarthy.

Some of our brothers and sisters—particularly in the, you know, MAGA camp, I think—particularly enjoy the circular firing squad,” Roy said Tuesday night on The Blaze. “You want to come at me and call me a RINO? You can kiss my ass.”

“You go around talking your big game,” Roy said, “and you thumping your chest on Twitter? Yeah, come to my office, come have a debate, mother.”

Roy confusingly later said he was not addressing Gaetz or the other anti-McCarthy Republicans, adding that he understood their frustrations but disagreed with their method.

The growing anger toward Gaetz is unlikely to help him as Republicans weigh whether to expel him from Congress. The House GOP will likely move to expel Gaetz if the Ethics Committee finds him guilty of sexual misconduct, illegal drug use, and other wrongdoings.

Hours After Gag Order, Trump Launches Fresh Vitriol Against New York Judge

It’s only a matter of time before Donald Trump crosses the line (again).

Donald Trump speaks while his legal team stands behind him
David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Donald Trump on Wednesday launched fresh vitriol against the judge and prosecuting attorney in his New York business fraud trial, carefully skirting a gag order imposed on him just a day prior.

Trump tried Tuesday to bully a court clerk, sharing false conspiracies about her as well as her personal information. Presiding Judge Arthur Engoron issued a gag order later that day prohibiting all parties involved in the case from publicly discussing court staff.

While Trump avoided mentioning court staff on Wednesday, he went all out with attacks against Engoron and New York Attorney General Letitia James.

“This is election interference. They made up a fake case, these fraudulent people,” Trump told reporters. “And the judge already knows what he’s gonna do. He’s a Democrat judge. In all fairness to him, he has no choice.… He’s run by the Democrats.”

Trump has previously accused Engoron of being a Democratic political operative. He also took aim at James, a Black woman, calling her a “political animal.” He wrote on Truth Social that James is “corrupt” and accused her of committing fraud. He said her lawsuit was a “witch hunt” and implied James had lied to the judge about the real estate value of Mar-a-Lago.

At this point, it’s a matter of time before Trump violates his gag order—and many legal experts are already predicting exactly that.

James sued Trump and the Trump Organization in September for fraud, accusing the former president and his allies of fraudulently inflating the value of their real estate assets. Trump has repeatedly attacked James, calling her “racist,” “deranged,” “incompetent,” and a “monster.”

Engoron issued a partial summary judgment last week ruling that Trump committed business fraud and ordering all his New York business certificates be canceled. This makes it nearly impossible to do business in New York and could effectively kill the Trump Organization as it exists today.

A Desperate Rudy Giuliani Is Quickly Losing His Legal Team

Things are not looking good for one of Donald Trump’s biggest allies.

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Another one of Rudy Giuliani’s lawyers has withdrawn from representing the former New York mayor in Fulton County, Georgia.

Giuliani was charged in Georgia with felony racketeering, alongside Donald Trump and 17 other co-defendants, for his efforts to try to overturn the state’s 2020 election results. Giuliani’s lawyer David Wolfe withdrew last week from representing Giuliani in that case.

Now a second Giuliani lawyer, Brian Tevis, has also filed a motion to withdraw. The document, filed Tuesday evening, does not specify why Tevis chose to leave Giuliani’s legal team. Wolfe also had not indicated why he was withdrawing.

Several of Giuliani’s former lawyers, including his longtime attorney Robert Costello, have sued Giuliani for failing to pay their legal fees. And now Tevis’s departure appears to leave the Trump ally without a local lawyer in Georgia.

Giuliani may have to end up representing himself in Georgia—a tactic he is already employing to save some cash. The man once affectionately known as “America’s mayor” is scrambling to find the money for all his legal fees and even listed his Manhattan apartment for sale in July. In August, after he was indicted in Georgia, Giuliani asked his social media followers to donate to his defense fund.

He also flew to Mar-a-Lago to beg Trump to pay him for working as Trump’s personal attorney. That didn’t work, but Trump did agree to host a fundraiser dinner for Giuliani. Entry cost $100,000 a plate, but Giuliani paid Costello just $10,000 in September.

In addition to the racketeering charges in Georgia, Giuliani was ordered to pay more than $130,000 to Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss. The two women served as 2020 election workers in Georgia, and Giuliani falsely accused them for months of fraud.

Giuliani’s third ex-wife says he owes her more than $260,000 for her country club memberships, condominium fees, and health care as part of their divorce settlement. Giuliani narrowly avoided jail time over that lawsuit in December. And one of Giuliani’s former associates sued him in May, accusing him of promising to pay her a $1 million annual salary but instead raping and sexually abusing her over the course of two years.

McCarthy Allies Are Taking Revenge on Democrats, in Pettiest Way Possible

Kevin McCarthy and his friends are mad that Democrats didn’t help him keep the House speaker’s gavel.

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Acting House Speaker Patrick McHenry (left) and Kevin McCarthy

Allies of ousted House Speaker Kevin McCarthy have begun to exact a very strange revenge against Democrats who voted to kick him from power.

The House voted 216–210 Tuesday to strip McCarthy of the gavel. Eight Republicans broke ranks to vote against him, but all Democrats united to oppose McCarthy. McCarthy appointed his ally Patrick McHenry to serve as speaker pro tempore until the chamber can vote on an official replacement,

McHenry immediately ordered former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to move out of her Capitol office. Ironically, Pelosi did not even participate in the vote because she was in California for the funeral of her friend, the late Senator Dianne Feinstein.

“This eviction is a sharp departure from tradition,” Pelosi said in a statement. She referred to when she first became speaker in 2007, saying she had given her predecessor “a significantly larger suite of offices for as long as he wished.”

“Office space doesn’t matter to me, but it seems to be important to them,” Pelosi said.

Republican Representative Garret Graves said Wednesday that McCarthy will be given her office instead. Graves argued the office is for the “preceding speaker” (not a rule, just politeness) and that Pelosi brought her eviction upon herself because “she and other Democrats have caused there to be an immediately preceding speaker.”

Also on Wednesday, Republican leadership kicked Democratic Representative Steny Hoyer out of his Capitol office. Hoyer served as the Majority Leader while Pelosi was speaker.* Punchbowl News’s Jake Sherman reported that anonymous GOP sources warned more retaliation of this kind was coming.

It’s odd that Republicans are taking revenge on Democrats, considering McCarthy made it very clear that he did not want Democrats’ help to stay on as speaker. He refused to even try to negotiate with them, telling reporters hours before the vote, “They haven’t asked for anything. I’m not going to provide anything.”

He also did a terrible job trying to negotiate with his own caucus. When McCarthy reached out to Republicans who ultimately voted against him, their conversations only “solidified” those members’ resolve to oppose him, NPR reported Wednesday. One lawmaker, speaking anonymously, described the conversation with McCarthy as “condescending.”

It’s shocking to see that Republicans are choosing to focus on petty revenge instead of cleaning up the mess they have made. Far-right Republicans kicked McCarthy out because they didn’t like the deal he struck for a continuing resolution to keep the government open. Of course, the risk of a shutdown only came about because Republicans refused to negotiate on appropriations bills.

Now Republicans have no clue what to do next or who will be the next House leader. They also only have about 40 days before the government runs out of money and faces a shutdown again. But rather than getting organized, they are fighting over office space.

* This article originally misstated Hoyer’s role while Pelosi was House speaker.

Guess Who Far-Right Republicans Want to be the Next House Speaker?

The race is on to find the next House speaker—and a few Republicans are floating a very familiar name.

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Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz

Republicans have booted Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House. But don’t worry, they already have a great plan to replace him.

For the first time in U.S. history, the House voted Tuesday night to vacate the speakership. Most Republicans, including the ones who voted to kick McCarthy out, quickly made it clear that they have no idea what actually happens next. But a candidate soon began to emerge: Donald Trump.

Freedom Caucus member Troy Nehls was one of the first to suggest the former president as a candidate for speaker.

His call was soon taken up by other far-right Republicans, such as Greg Steube and Marjorie Taylor Greene.

Luckily for them, the quadruply indicted, liable-for-sexual assault, defamation, and business fraud presidential candidate may make some time in his calendar to step up to the plate. Fox News’s Sean Hannity reported late Tuesday that Trump is “open to helping the Republican Party, at least in the short term, if necessary.”

This isn’t the first time that Republicans have tried to put Trump forward as speaker. During the 15 grueling votes for speaker in January, Matt Gaetz nominated Trump as speaker instead of voting for McCarthy.

Gaetz, who filed the motion to vacate McCarthy, has yet to join in the calls for Trump. He has expressed support for both Steve Scalise and Jim Jordan. Gaetz and several other Freedom Caucus members voted several times for Jordan over McCarthy in January, despite the fact that Jordan backed McCarthy and made it clear he had no interest in holding the gavel.

But even Gaetz may come around to the idea of Trump as House speaker: Earlier this week, he pointed out that the next leader of the House does not need to be a member of the chamber.

Unfortunately, Republicans’ own House rules may bar Trump from holding the speakership. As Democratic Representative Sean Casten pointed out, the rules clearly state that a member of Republican leadership must step aside if they have been “indicted for a felony for which a sentence of two or more years imprisonment may be imposed.”

Republicans Are Freaking Out Immediately After Ousting Kevin McCarthy

No one has any idea what comes next, including those who pushed to remove McCarthy as House speaker in the first place.

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House lawmakers have for the first time ousted their own speaker—and no one has a clue what comes next. In fact, some are literally crying about it.

For now, Representative Patrick McHenry will temporarily lead the House of Representatives, after being handpicked for the role of interim speaker by ousted Speaker Kevin McCarthy. But that’s about all anyone knows about what happens now.

Representative Matt Gaetz, who filed the motion to oust McCarthy late Monday evening, made clear from the very beginning that he has no idea who could possibly take over for the House speaker. After the vote to remove McCarthy as speaker, Gaetz again confirmed that he doesn’t have someone in mind for the role.

Representative Scott Perry, one of the 11 Republicans to advance the vote to oust McCarthy, also told CNN he doesn’t have a name for who he wants to see as speaker. “We’re going to see what happens now. I’m going to base my decisions on what happens.” (Perry did not, in the end, vote to oust McCarthy.)

Other lawmakers are simply confused about what to do now.

And they’re quickly turning on each other.

This is the first time in 113 years that House lawmakers have voted to oust their own speaker—and the first time in U.S. history that the vote was actually successful.

All this to say, it’s pure chaos in the Republican Party right now.

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