A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things.
La La La I Can’t Hear You, Science
Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services conducted a study in November that showed that areas of the state with mask mandates had lower rates of COVID-19 infection and death than those without–but Gov. Mike Parson (R) never released the department’s findings to the public.
- It was Parson’s office that commissioned the study in the first place.
- Like many other Republican governors, Parson has attacked local mask mandates despite their (proven) effectiveness against the coronavirus.
- Additionally, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt (R), who’s suing counties that have mask mandates, is still pushing through with his war on the mandates even in the face of the study. His spokesperson told Missouri Independent that “[w]e dispute this premise” of the analysis.
Congress Narrowly Dodges Government Shutdown
The Senate on Thursday evening passed the stopgap spending bill to keep the government funded through mid-February despite several GOP senators’ threat to hold up the resolution to force Democrats to dismantle Biden’s vaccine and testing mandate.
- The government was set to run out of money at midnight today. The newly passed bill covers funding through Feb. 18.
- Now it awaits Biden’s signature.
Missouri Officials Planned To Thank Newspaper Before Attacking It Instead
In more Missouri news, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch found email records revealing that before the state’s Office of Administration bizarrely accused one of its reporters of being a “hacker” in October for discovering a serious glitch on the education department’s website, the education department was actually planning on thanking the news outlet.
- The site’s glitch risked exposing thousands of teachers’ Social Security numbers, and the Post-Dispatch flagged it to the Missouri government for a fix before publicly reporting on it.
- The Post-Dispatch noted in its latest report that a political action committee boosting Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) had put out a video bragging that the governor was “standing up to the fake news media” less than a week after he announced a criminal investigation into the newspaper over the so-called “hacking.”
Angry GOP Sen. Decides Judicial Nominee Is Too Mad To Be Judge
Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) told Dale Ho, one of Biden’s judicial picks, that he doesn’t have the right temperament for a judge, that he’s “an angry man” and “We don’t need federal judges who are angry.”
- And that’s exactly why Kennedy voted to confirm now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who was very chill during his confirmation hearing in the face of being accused of sexual assault.
- Kennedy himself is a self-composed man who definitely doesn’t do things like tell people who disagree with him to “kiss my ass” or call them whack jobs or tell them to buy spines on Amazon or shout “It must suck to be that dumb!”
Appeals Court Takes Up Carroll Defamation Case Against Trump
Writer E. Jean Carroll, who’s accused Trump of raping her and is now suing him for defamation, is facing off against the Justice Department at a federal appeals court today.
- Yes, the Biden administration is still defending the ex-president in the case, even though the DOJ’s involvement is a direct result of Trump weaponizing the DOJ as his personal law firm in cases exactly like this one.
- Trump also plans to counter-sue Carroll to shut down the case. He did the same thing in October to another one of his accusers who was suing him for defamation, and she agreed to drop her suit without an explanation.
“The Abortion I Didn’t Have” – The New York Times Magazine
“A Slow-Motion Climate Disaster: The Spread of Barren Land” – The New York Times
GOP Rep. Tells Trump To Put A Cork In It
Rep. Don Young (R-AK), who’s become one of Trump’s targets for having the audacity for vote for the bipartisan infrastructure bill, seems pretty unbothered by the ex-president’s wrath. In fact, Young has some advice for Trump, whose “policy” is “just so good,” according to the GOP lawmaker: “Just shut up — that’s all he has to do.”
Jettisoned Trump White House Lackey Has Serious Thoughts
Reince Priebus, Trump’s first chief of staff who lasted a whole six months, tsk-tsked yesterday at the news that Simone Sanders, top adviser to Vice President Kamala Harris, is leaving the White House:
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