A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.
Common Courtesy, Man
Aides and allies of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) are privately bothered that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) pulled his Martha’s Vineyard stunt (which involved the Florida governor rounding up Venezuelan migrants at the Texas border) without telling Abbott first, according to the New York Times.
- After all, Abbott’s team reportedly complains, the migrants came from the Texas governor’s turf, and he’s just as committed to exploiting them by sending them to “blue cities” just as much as DeSantis is!
- DeSantis privately lamented to donors last year that he wasn’t as lucky as Abbott to have that delicious U.S.-Mexico border to use as racist political capital, the Times also reports.
GOP Rep. Clarifies That She Didn’t Fire Staffer Accused Of Sexual Harassment
Rep. Mayra Flores (R-TX) claimed on Saturday that she had fired her campaign’s district director over sexual harassment allegations against him because “[w]e will not tolerate any of that behavior.”
- It turned out that Flores had “misspoke” and that the staffer had resigned, the GOP lawmaker’s campaign told the Texas Tribune later on Saturday.
- The sexual harassment accusations against the (now-former) district director had allegedly spanned decades. He has denied the allegations.
Georgia To Replace County’s Breached Voting Machines
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) announced on Friday that the voting equipment in Coffee County will be replaced after pro-Trump operatives got access to it thanks to one of the state’s fake Trump electors.
- The equipment is being replaced specifically to get “perennial election deniers and conspiracy theorists” to STFU, according to Raffensperger.
- Arizona’s Maricopa County similarly had to toss away its voting equipment thanks to MAGA election denialism. The county paid nearly $3 million in taxpayer funds to replace the equipment because it had been subjected to the Arizona state Senate’s bogus 2020 election “audit” and election officials had no way of knowing if the equipment had been tampered with by the fake auditors.
Gaetz Unlikely To Face Charges In Trafficking Case
Career prosecutors have recommended not pursuing criminal charges against Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) in the Justice Department’s sex trafficking investigation, according to the Washington Post. Politico has confirmed that the Republican congressman is unlikely to be charged.
- The main issue is reportedly the dubious credibility of key witnesses, specifically Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend and his buddy Joel Greenberg, Gaetz’s indicted wingman who’s pleaded guilty to child sex trafficking and fraud.
- DOJ officials reportedly haven’t made a final decision yet, but the Post notes that it’s rare for them to ignore that kind of advice.
- Gaetz had reportedly pushed for a pardon related to the sex trafficking probe from Trump near the end of his presidency. At least, that’s what ex-senior White House aide Johnny McEntee told the House Jan. 6 Committee during his testimony, according to the Post.
Italy To Elect Most-Far Right Government Since Mussolini
The far-right Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy) party, led by anti-immigration firebrand Giorgia Meloni, is projected to emerge victorious in Italy’s snap election. The Brothers of Italy party is rooted in post-World War II fascism that was founded by Mussolini loyalists.
Cheney Plans To Campaign Against Election Truthers
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), the vice chair of the House Jan. 6 Committee, on Saturday pledged to actively try to take down Big Lie acolytes Arizona gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake and Pennsylvania gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano.
- That includes campaigning for Democrats, Cheney said.
- Cheney also vowed to leave the Republican Party if Trump were to be nominated in 2024. Keep in mind that she’s mulling a bid for the White House herself.
Arizona Judge Allows 19th Century Near-Total Abortion Ban
Almost all abortions are now illegal in Arizona (the only exception being to save the life of the mother, none for rape or incest) after a state judge on Friday lifted a 50-year block on an abortion ban dating back to 1864–back when Arizona wasn’t even a state yet.
WTF Read Of The Day
“Students Say They Were ‘Duped’ Into Attending Twisted Religious Event” – The Daily Beast
Kids Will Be Able Buy Hard Drugs Without Fear Under GOP Policies, McCarthy Promises
Here’s House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) big pitch ahead of the midterms:
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