A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things.
Hit The Ground Running
Democratic senators early Wednesday morning approved the $3.5 trillion budget resolution for their massive package to push sweeping changes to the country’s “soft” infrastructure, including health care and education.
- After the vote, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that his caucus “just took a massive step towards restoring the middle class in the 21st Century.”
- While he voted for the budget resolution, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) continues to throw cold water on the size of the package, calling it “simply irresponsible.”
Senate Republicans Shoot Down Sweeping Voting Rights Reform
GOP senators predictably blocked Democrats’ effort to move forward with the “For The People” Act and other voting rights protections early Wednesday morning. But the move by Schumer to force the votes sets the Senate up to take up the issue again when it returns in September.
- Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who led the Republicans’ objections, parroted the typical GOP talking points about the legislation; that it’s a “federal government takeover of elections” and “a massive power grab” by the Democrats.
- Democrats were fully aware that the block was inevitable. Their attempt to advance the legislation was about getting their Republican colleagues’ rejection of it on the record.
- Schumer pounced after Cruz objected. “Mr. President, the Republican minority just prevented the Senate from even having a debate—a debate, just that—on voting rights in this country,” the Democratic leader said on the floor.
Texas Republicans Authorize Law Enforcement To Arrest Fleeing Democrats
Texas House lawmakers on Tuesday night voted to allow the chamber’s sergeant-at-arms to order the arrest of Democrats who refuse to return after ditching the state to avoid a vote on the GOP’s voting restrictions.
- Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan (R) signed 52 civil arrest warrants after the vote.
- The House Republicans’ vote came after the all-GOP Texas Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s temporary halt on arresting the Democrats.
- The Democrats said after the Supreme Court made its decision that it was “no surprise” that Abbott and Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan (R) “want to arrest their political opponents” and vowed to continue the battle at a temporary injunction hearing on Aug 20.
- Abbott’s office praised the Supreme Court for “upholding the rule of law and stopping another stall tactic by the Texas Democrats.”
Wisconsin GOP’s Anti-Voting Gambit Foiled
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) vetoed several GOP bills that aimed to saddle absentee voting with burdensome requirements.
- Republicans don’t have the votes to override the veto, so this round was a loss. But don’t forget that they still have an Arizona-inspired fake investigation into the 2020 election results going on, so the push to delegitimize faith in the electoral process is still alive and well.
A Key Biden DOJ Nom
The President has tapped a former assistant special counsel who worked in Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, Elizabeth Prelogar, to be solicitor general at the Justice Department.
- Prelogar has been working as acting solicitor general since January.
- She clerked for Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan, and before that for Attorney General Merrick Garland back when he was an appeals court judge.
Newly Uncovered Nuggets Of Trump’s Election Attacks
Former acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen told the Senate last weekend that Trump had called him directly seeking to have him file a particular complaint that aimed to get the Supreme Court to overturn the election, according to Politico.
- Yes, we already knew Trump was trying to loop Rosen into that gambit. What’s new is the fact that Trump’s pressure campaign included a direct phone call to the acting AG.
Cuomo’s Trumpiness Behind The Scenes
The disgraced New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) called up the White House in 2014 to attack then-U.S. attorney Preet Bharara and his anti-corruption investigation into New York politics, Ronan Farrow reports in the New Yorker.
- After Cuomo announced his resignation yesterday, Bharara called the governor “a person of mischief” and questioned why Cuomo’s resignation wouldn’t be in effect until two weeks.
GAO: DHS Failed To Prepare For Threat Of Jan. 6
The Department of Homeland Security failed to designate Jan. 6 as a special event in advance, which would’ve bolstered security measures on the day that the pro-Trump mob attacked the Capitol, a little-noticed report from the Government Accountability Office found.
A Critical Hearing To Keep On Your Radar Today
Byung “BJay” Pak, the ex-U.S. attorney in Atlanta who mysteriously quit as Trump tried to undo Georgia’s election results, will testify today in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“The Vaccine Cards Are the Wrong Size” – The Atlantic
The Million-Dollar Question
— The Recount (@therecount) August 10, 2021