Morning Memo: The 14 GOPers Who Opposed Making Juneteenth A Federal Holiday

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June 17, 2021 9:19 a.m.

Here’s what caught our attention.

Juneteenth Wins

The House overwhelmingly passed legislation to make Juneteenth a federal holiday by a 415-14 vote after the Senate had approved it unanimously.

  • 14 Republican House lawmakers voted against it. Do you think they have anything in common?
  • One of those Republicans, Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) said his problem was that it was called “Juneteenth National Independence Day.” He argued that the name “needlessly divides our nation on a matter that should instead bring us together by creating a separate Independence Day based on the color of one’s skin.”
  • Another somehow managed to make it about his party’s culture war target du jour: critical race theory. Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT) complained that the bill was “effort by the Left to create a day out of whole cloth to celebrate identity politics as part of its larger efforts to make Critical Race Theory the reigning ideology of our country.”

Biden will sign the bill into law this afternoon.

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New York Times reporter Astead Herndon brings up an interesting point:

Behind Closed Doors

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) urged billionaire donors and corporate executives in a Zoom call on Monday to help him get 10 GOP senators on board with the Jan. 6 commission in order to prove “the far left” wrong about the filibuster, a recording of the call obtained by the Intercept revealed.

But at the same time, the conservative Democrat did hint at an openness to reforming the filibuster despite previously coming out against the notion of weakening it.

  • One potential reform he mentioned in the call was lowering the vote threshold from 60 to 55, even though he’s publicly eschewed that idea. Manchin acknowledged that he had “planted my flag” on 60, “but as long as they know that I’m going to protect this filibuster, we’re looking at good solutions.”
  • Another was making it so that 41 senators who want to invoke the filibuster have to go to the floor and explain why they oppose it and what they think ought to change. The West Virginia Democrat said that would be “pretty productive” in his eyes.

So Much For ‘Back The Blue’

D.C. Metropolitan Police officer Michael Fanone says Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-GA), one of the 21 House Republicans who voted against awarding Congressional Gold Medals to law enforcement officers like him who protected lawmakers from the Capitol insurrectionists, refused to shake his hand in an elevator yesterday.

  • “He turned away from me, pulled out his cellphone and started thumbing through the apps,” Fanone told the Washington Post.

Biden’s Meeting With Putin

The much-anticipated meeting seemed to be cordial, at least. The Russian leader called Biden a “very balanced, professional man” afterward, and POTUS stated that “last thing [Putin] wants now is a Cold War.”

  • The Republican National Committee (RNC) blasted out an utterly shameless complaint that Biden had handed a “win” to Russia by meeting with Putin. “The American people deserve a leader who prioritizes our interests and holds bad actors accountable,” howled the organization whose leader personally cozied up to despots on the regular, Russia included.

Cruel And Unusual

“SC Supreme Court again halts execution, directs Corrections to make firing squad available” – The Post and Courier

Thicker Than Water

Rep. Paul Gosar’s (R-AZ) own sister dragged him on national television:

New York, New York

The final debate in the NYC mayoral race was last night.

  • One particularly jaw-dropping moment came when Andrew Yang, one of the frontrunners, said this:

Extremely Texas

It’ll soon be legal to carry a handgun without a permit or training in the Lone Star State thanks to a new law signed off by Gov. Greg Abbott (R), which will go into effect in September.

How Is This Real?

“In secret recording, Florida Republican threatens to send Russian-Ukrainian ‘hit squad’ after rival” – Politico

What did you think of Morning Memo? Let us know.

Correction: A previous version of this article misstated when the new Texas gun law will go into effect.

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