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Here’s Why 15 Republicans Flipped Their Support to Kevin McCarthy
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Republican opponents of Rep. Kevin McCarthy flipped to support him on the twelfth and thirteenth speaker ballots, giving the Californian renewed hope of ascending to the gavel.

Conservatives led by Texas Rep. Chip Roy negotiated a rules package that would devolve power away from the Speaker and back to committees and individual members. Although the details have not been made public, reports indicate that the deal between McCarthy and his detractors includes plum committee assignments, baseline spending promises, and a one vote threshold for the motion to vacate the chair. Maryland Rep. Andy Harris flipped to support McCarthy on the 13th ballot.

“I can’t get into details about what the agreement contains, but if I were to characterize it in general, it is that it contains provisions both related to, you know we’ve been working on rules a long time, and we’ve done some more there. It has to do with personnel, how members of the conference will be appropriately distributed to key committees. It is about policy imperatives. There are critical issues that we must address,” North Carolina Rep. Dan Bishop told reporters.

Roy, Pennsylvania Rep. Scott Perry, and incoming House Financial Services Committee chairman Patrick McHenry of North Carolina negotiated the rules package on Thursday night and into Friday morning. Provisions include the motion to vacate threshold at one vote, a vote on a term limits constitutional amendment, and a plan to balance the federal budget over a ten-year period.

“It involves some leaps of good faith to see to it that it is implemented,” Bishop acknowledged.

It’s “about how to make this place work for the American people, and so that’s what you’ve seen happen here today. That’s what we’re continuing to work toward. I think we’ll be able to get there,” incoming Oklahoma Rep. Josh Brecheen added.

Republican Maryland Rep. Andy Harris flipped his vote to support McCarthy on the 13th ballot. He is angling to chair the Health and Human Services subcommittee on Appropriations.

Even if McCarthy gains the speaker’s gavel, the House will still need 218 votes to pass the rules package instituting the agreement. If the package does not pass, the McCarthy skeptics could defect.

“If the framework blows up, I’m out,” Perry said.

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14 Comments
  • Pamela Cohen says:

    Not flipped. Caved with empty promises to save face.
    You didn’t save face.

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    DeSantis Gets Into RNC Race, Backing Dhillo

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    “Our democracy is at great risk. Because GOP leaders care more about power than anything else,” Schiff tweeted, sharing a video announcing his campaign. “We’re in the fight of our lives—a fight I’m ready to lead as California’s next U.S. Senator.”

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    WATCH: The View Co-Hosts Are Silenced After ‘Fart’ Erupts Live on Air

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    Pelosis Dumped Google Stock Weeks Before Justice Department Unveiled Antitrust Lawsuit

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    A state court building in New York City unveiled a new art project that is not going over well online.

    The sculpture, entitled “NOW,” was installed on the roof of the Appellate Division Courthouse of New York State, First Department on Madison Avenue last week as part of an art exhibit from artist Shahzia Sikander. The statue is meant to represent the legacy of the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, but New Yorkers and other viewers on Twitter noticed that the statue is both unsightly and unsettling.

    Corporate consultant Andrew Beck shared pictures of the art installation in a Twitter thread. “A new statue atop a New York City courthouse,” he wrote. “The artist says it’s part of an ‘urgent and necessary cultural reckoning underway as New York reconsiders traditional representations of power in public spaces and recasts civic structures to better reflect 21st-century social mores.’”

    The roof of the court building is lined with statues of famous lawgivers from history and legend. The statue is situated on the corner of the building, with brazen metal standing out against the weathered stone statues next to it. It depicts a woman with hair braided into long spirals like ram’s horns, and a web of tentacle-like protrusions at each arm, wearing a lace apron like the one Ginsburg wore over her robe, and standing on a pink lotus flower.

    A profile for the statue written by The New York Times said that the statue is the first female figure placed on the court building. “She [the statue] is a fierce woman and a form of resistance in a space that has historically been dominated by patriarchal representation,” Sikander told The New York Times. Sikander said she entitled the piece “NOW” because it is needed in the current year when abortion rights are being challenged in the wake of the Supreme Court returning abortion law to the states in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

    Sikander has another piece with similar designs placed in the area. That statue, an 18-foot tall recreation of the same figure, but with a metal cage symbolizing a hoop skirt, is entitled “Witness” and is placed in Madison Square Park across from the court building. The two statues together are entitled, “Havah…to breathe, air, life.”

    But Twitter users immediately pointed out that besides being visually unpleasant, the sculpture idolizes abortion and has pagan or even demonic motifs.

    “They turned abortion into a pagan idol to worship and put it on a courthouse,” Billy Gribbin, communications director for Republican Georgia Congressman Rich McCormick, wrote on Twitter.

    “The New York Courthouse has added this aesthetic atrocity to its sculptures of great lawmakers,” Daily Wire podcast host Andrew Klavan wrote. “It is meant to honor Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s pro-abortion stance by depicting a woman with demonic goat-horns who has clearly lost the power to reproduce. Or something.”

    “The next Republican mayor of New York should not only remove but publicly destroy this monstrosity,” Daily Wire host Michael Knowles added.

    “New York has put an androgynous baphomet with tentacles digging into its own torso on top of the courthouse in order to ‘better reflect 21st century social mores.’” writer Brandon Meeks said. “Sounds about right.”

    “[T]he ugliness is the point,” New Founding and American Firebrand digital director Logan Hall added.

    “What a visual desecration of the landscape,” America First Legal Foundation founder Stephen Miller tweeted.

    “WOW the baphomet/Aries symbolism is… a lot,” one Twitter user chimed in. “Especially given the opposite or sister sign Libra represents the scales of balance or ‘arms’ of Justice.”

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    PayPal Hack Exposes Customer Names, Social Security Numbers

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    Some 35,000 PayPal user accounts have been hacked by a method known as “credential stuffing,” resulting in exposed names and Social Security numbers, according to a notification posted on a government website.

    Through its lawyers, the California-based payment processor sent a notice to Maine’s attorney general. The company also sent a letter, dated Jan. 19, about the data breach to affected users.

    The accounts were breached sometime between Dec. 6 and Dec. 8, 2022, the letter said. The company said that it was able to deal with the attack soon after it occurred, according to the letter.

    The notification to users said (pdf) that 34,942 users were affected by the incident and that unauthorized third parties gained access to their accounts. Those third parties, which weren’t identified, could view full names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, addresses, and tax identification numbers.

    “We have no information suggesting that any of your personal information was misused as a result of this incident, or that there are any unauthorized transactions on your account,” PayPal’s letter read.

    A “credential stuffing” attack involves automatically injecting login credentials that were found during previous data breaches.

    “If you detect any suspicious activity on an account, change the password and security questions immediately, and promptly notify the company where the account is maintained,” PayPal stated. “You may also add additional security for your PayPal account by enabling ‘2-step verification’ in your Account Settings. When links are present in an email, individuals should hover [their] mouse over the links to view the actual destination URL and should not click on the link if [they] are unsure of the destination URL or website.”

    The company also said it has reset passwords on those PayPal accounts. Affected users will also get free identity monitoring services from Equifax, the consumer credit reporting company.

    In a statement to PCMag, the company maintained that it was only a “small number of PayPal customer accounts” that were impacted by the breach. The Epoch Times has contacted PayPal for comment. It noted that neither its website nor its systems were hacked.

    “PayPal’s payment systems were not impacted, and no financial information was accessed,” the firm said. “We have contacted affected customers directly to provide guidance on this matter to help them further protect their information. The security and privacy of our customers’ account information [remain] a top priority for PayPal, and we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.”

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    Top Investment Bank Projects 4 U.S. Cities Will Suffer A 2008-Level Crash In Home Value

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    Goldman Sachs recently informed its clients that it expects home values to tank in four major markets across the U.S. amid worsening economic conditions.

    The investment bank predicts that San Jose, California; San Diego, California; Austin, Texas; and Phoenix, Arizona; could see a crash on the level of the 2008 housing crash.

    Fox News reported that the market crashes in those cities could be worse than 25%.

    “Our 2023 revised forecast primarily reflects our view that interest rates will remain at elevated levels longer than currently priced in, with 10-year Treasury yields peaking in 2023 Q3,” Goldman Sachs said in a report. “As a result, we are raising our forecast for the 30-year fixed mortgage rate to 6.5% for year-end 2023 (representing a 30 bp increase from our prior expectation).”

    “This [national] decline should be small enough as to avoid broad mortgage credit stress, with a sharp increase in foreclosures nationwide seeming unlikely,” the report added. “That said, overheated housing markets in the Southwest and Pacific coast, such as San Jose MSA, Austin MSA, Phoenix MSA, and San Diego MSA will likely grapple with peak-to-trough declines of over 25%, presenting localized risk of higher delinquencies for mortgages originated in 2022 or late 2021.”

    Goldman Sachs said that home prices are also expected to take a small hit in New York City and Chicago. Baltimore and Miami were expected to see small gains.

    The report added, “Assuming the economy remains on the path to a soft landing, avoiding a recession, and the 30-year fixed mortgage rate falls back to 6.15% by year-end 2024, home price growth will likely shift from depreciation to below-trend appreciation in 2024.”

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    Revealed: Jeremy Renner’s Life-Threatening Injuries Came From Heroic Effort To Save Nephew

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    Actor Jeremy Renner’s life-threatening injuries suffered on New Year’s Day from his 14,000-pound snowplow came as a result of a heroic effort to save his nephew.

    According to a Nevada sheriff’s office incident report, the tragic incident began when Renner, 52, used his PistenBully snowcat to pull his nephew’s truck out of his driveway. Once the truck was on the street, the snowplow began “sliding sideways,” and then “began to roll down the hill,” prompting Renner to jump out without setting the emergency brake. But then Renner realized the snowplow was headed toward his nephew.

    “He feared the Pistenbully was going to hit (his nephew), so he decided to attempt to stop or divert the Pistenbully,” the report states. Renner tried to enter the snowplow’s cab but in order to do so he had to climb onto its moving track. He was “immediately pulled under the left side track,” the report adds.

    “Although the Pistenbully had some mechanical issues, it is believed based on our mechanical inspection that the parking brake would keep the Pistenbully from moving forward. When Renner attempted to stop or divert the Pistenbully to avoid injury to (his nephew), he was pulled under the vehicle by the track and run over,” the report concludes.

    A 911 call obtained by CNN shows a neighbor frantically calling 911, saying Renner had been “completely crushed under a large snowcat,” adding that “the right side of his chest … collapsed – upper torso is crushed.”

    During the 911 call, the female operator stated, “I need the address of the emergency please,” The Daily Mail reported.

    “I told you,” the frustrated neighbor responded.

    “I know, I just need to verify it, what is the phone number that you’re calling from,” the female operator insisted, adding, “What is the phone you’re calling from, just in case we get disconnected.”

    “Listen to me, you might want to get life line out here immediately,” the neighbor said urgently, later saying, “He’s got a headwound as well. Can you give me an ETA?”

    “It’s hard to give an ETA just because the snow on the mountain I don’t know how quick they’re able to go,” the female operator responded.

    “How’s he doing?” the operator asked. “Shallow breath, a lot of pain; he’s conscious we have him covered in blankets, his heads covered; he’ll be drifting off,” the neighbor responded.

    “Is he starting to kind of drift off into sleep?” the operator asked.

    “Yeah,” the neighbor responded.

    It took over 20 minutes for Renner’s rescuers to reach him as roads were closed from heavy snow. He was airlifted by helicopter from his home in Reno, Nevada, to Renown Regional Medical Center, the region’s only trauma center.

    Over the weekend Renner said he hoped the “30 plus broken bones will mend, grow stronger, just like the love and bond with family and friends deepens.”

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    Paul Pelosi Attack Footage to Be Released After Court Order

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    A San Francisco judge has ordered that police body cam footage related to an October attack on Paul Pelosi be released.

    The order comes after a coalition of news outlets filed a motion to release the footage on January 11. The coalition included such outlets as The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Fox News.

    “[T]he public and press have standing to assert their rights of access to court records and proceedings,” the coalition argued in its court filing.

    The body camera footage was reportedly played in court in December and showed an assailant striking Pelosi with a hammer.

    Pelosi, husband to former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), was attacked on October 28 by a nudist activist who broke into the Pelosi residence seeking to kidnap the then-House speaker, prosecutors said in a pretrial hearing. The activist, who prosecutors identified as 42-year-old David DePape, attacked Paul Pelosi after not being able to locate his wife.

    DePape has pleaded not guilty on all charges, which include both state and federal charges. He is expected to appear in state court on February 23 to set a date for his trial. He is being held in jail without bail.

    Authorities said that San Francisco police entered the Pelosi residence around 2:30 a.m. local time on the night of the attack. Police saw an assailant and Pelosi struggling over a hammer, then saw the assailant “violently assault” Pelosi, the police said.

    After the attack, Pelosi was taken to a hospital where he underwent “successful surgery to repair a skull fracture and serious injuries to his right arm and hands,” a spokesman for Nancy Pelosi said at the time.

    DePape broke into the house shouting “Where’s Nancy?” a court affidavit said.

    DePape told first responders at the scene that he was sick of the “level of lies” from politicians in Washington, D.C., and “came here to have a little chat with [Paul Pelosi’s] wife,” according to a court filing.

    “I didn’t really want to hurt him, but you know this was a suicide mission. I’m not going to stand here and do nothing even if it cost me my life,” DePape said, according to the filing.

    DePape allegedly intended to attack other high profile figures as well. Police said DePape intended to target President Joe Biden’s son Hunter, California Governor Gavin Newsom, and actor Tom Hanks.

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    META Announces It Will Lift Trump’s Facebook, Instagram Suspensions — Trump Responds

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    Meta announced Wednesday it will end former President Trump’s suspension from Facebook and Instagram, saying the penalty imposed after January 6 was “an extraordinary decision taken in extraordinary circumstances,” and pledging to enforce “certain guardrails” on Trump in the future.

    The company did not say when Trump would be allowed to post on its platforms but said it was confident the “risk” he posed to public safety had passed. Twitter, which also suspended Trump in the wake of the Capitol riot also recently reinstated Trump, although the former president has so far chosen to communicate through his own platform, Truth Social.

    “We are bringing Mr. Trump back in the coming weeks with certain guardrails, applicable to any public figures suspended for certain violations during times of civil unrest,” a statement from Meta read.

    The company defended about its controversial 2021 decision, insisting it never wanted to interfere in debate surrounding elections and that its decision had been approved by an oversight board. In lifting the suspension, Meta said that based on Trump’s past behavior on the platform, he now faces “heightened penalties for repeat offenses – penalties which will apply to other public figures whose accounts are reinstated from suspensions related to civil unrest under our updated protocol.”

    “The penalties and potential restrictions we’ve put in place are a deterrent,” the statement read, warning that Trump could face another suspension ranging from one month to two years if he violates the company’s rules.

    The company claimed that Trump had praised violent rioters at the Capitol, meriting his indefinite suspension, and that after January 6, “the risks of allowing President Trump to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great.” Trump has denied praising or encouraging rioters, and did in fact take to Twitter as the riot unfolded to tell his supporters to disperse.

    Both Facebook and Twitter have been criticized for suspending Trump even as they allowed a host of world leaders with histories of human rights violations to maintain a presence.

    Trump responded to the suspension being lifted on Truth Social.

    “Such a thing should never again happen to a sitting president or anybody else who is not deserving of retribution,” Trump wrote.

    Meta said its updated protocol specifically addresses content that does not technically violate the platform’s policies, but that “contributes to the sort of risk that materialized on January 6th, such as content that delegitimizes an upcoming election or is related to QAnon.”

    “We may limit the distribution of such posts, and for repeated instances, may temporarily restrict access to our advertising tools,” the company said. “This step would mean that content would remain visible on Mr. Trump’s account but would not be distributed in people’s Feeds, even if they follow Mr. Trump. We may also remove the reshare button from such posts, and may stop them being recommended or run as ads. In the event that Mr. Trump posts content that violates the letter of the Community Standards but, under our newsworthy content policy, we assess there is a public interest in knowing that Mr. Trump made the statement that outweighs any potential harm, we may similarly opt to restrict the distribution of such posts but leave them visible on Mr. Trump’s account.”

    The company added that it was important for the public to see content from people like Trump, even if it was “distasteful or factually wrong.”

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    Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene Wants to Be Trump’s 2024 Running Mate

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    Far-right gadfly Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is positioning herself to be former President Donald Trump’s 2024 pick for vice president, according to a report on Wednesday.

    ​”This is no shrinking violet, she’s ambitious — she’s not shy about that, nor should she be,” Steve Bannon, the former top Trump strategist who hosts the War Room podcast​, told NBC News. ​

    Bannon added the Georgia Republican, 48, sees herself on the “short list for Trump’s VP.”​

    “​When MTG looks in the mirror, she sees a potential president smiling back,” ​he said.​

    A second person who advised the congresswoman told the outlet that Greene’s “whole vision is to be vice president,” and noted that she believes she could end up on Trump’s short list of potential running mates. ​

    Greene has seen her influence grow since becoming a dogged supporter of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) as he sought the gavel earlier this month. ​
    NBC reported that those close to Greene said she wants to rebrand herself as a lawmaker who can bridge the gap between the various factions of the Republican Party.

    Greene’s gambit to get behind McCarthy’s campaign for speaker paid off. ​

    McCarthy has vowed to always have her back and appointed her to two House panels — Homeland Security and Oversight ​– where she will play a role in GOP investigations of the Biden administration.

    Even though her unflinching support for McCarthy alienated some members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, Bannon said it was a calculated risk.

    “She’s both strategic and disciplined — she made a power move, knowing it would run up hard against her most ardent crew,” he told NBC. “She was prepared to take the intense heat/hatred short-term for the long-term goal of being a player.”​

    Greene’s office did not respond to calls from NBC inquiring about her future plans. ​​

    Trump, 76, who announced a third consecutive bid for the White House in November, has not given any indication that he has begun vetting potential running mates. ​

    Greene, who ​easily won reelection in her rural Georgia district Nov. 8, told the New York Times in October that she and Trump had already discussed the No. 2 spot on the presidential ticket.

    “I would be honored​,” she said at the time. “I think the last person that the RNC or the national party wants is me as his running mate.”

    ​Mike Pence, who served as Trump’s vice president during his four years in office, is weighing his own presidential run in 2024.

    Pence and Trump had a falling-out over the former’s refusal to reject electors when Congress certified the 2020 election for President Biden on Jan. 6, 2021. ​

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    UPDATE: The Bizarre True Story of Hunter, His Cousin, and The 50,000 Monthly Rent

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    Amid the brouhaha over President Joe Biden’s improper retention of classified documents and concerns that his son, Hunter Biden, had access to them, a 2018 form on which Hunter Biden claims to have spent nearly $50,000 a month on rent surfaced from the presidential son’s abandoned laptop.

    On it, Hunter Biden lists his father’s Wilmington house as his address, raising questions about whether he was using rent payments to pass money to his father. The money, $49,910, was actually a reference to rental payment for a Washington, D.C., office space used by Hunter Biden. But the story of the document is more absurd, involving Biden family favor trading, scorned relatives, and an ultimately failed effort to get Hunter Biden’s troubled cousin a new probation officer.

    The Washington Free Beacon traced the origin of the document to an attachment in a July 27, 2018, email from Hunter Biden to a luxury apartment complex in Los Angeles. The background check document was part of a rental application, and—though his communications with the building’s property manager indicated the apartment would be for him—text messages and emails on Hunter Biden’s laptop reveal it was in fact for his down-on-her-luck cousin, Caroline Biden, the daughter of Joe Biden’s brother Jim and his wife, Sara.

    The president’s niece pleaded guilty in 2017 to buying more than $100,000 worth of makeup with a stolen credit card. While she managed to skirt a grand larceny charge and the prison sentence it carried, she was sentenced to two years of probation—time she wanted to serve in Los Angeles.

    She texted Hunter Biden on July 26, 2018, from a New York City probation office, telling him she urgently needed a California address so her lawyer could transfer her probation there.

    Keeping Caroline Biden out of prison was a Biden family affair and Hunter Biden was at the center of the effort. He moved to the West Coast at least in part to escape family drama, he explained in a July 17 message, saying his sister-in-law and former lover Hallie Biden had asked him to leave the state of Delaware. His day to day in California, text messages and passages from his 2021 autobiography reveal, was largely spent cooking up batches of crack cocaine and negotiating rates with prostitutes. But Joe Biden, according to a text from Caroline Biden to Hunter Biden, thought Hunter Biden was a “good influence” on her.

    “Your dad thinks you’re a good influence which you are,” she wrote in a text message to Hunter Biden on July 20, 2018.

    In text messages, Caroline Biden repeatedly referred to Hunter Biden as her “partner in crime,” and the pair commiserated over their “sick” family. She was trying to move to California to be closer to him.

    Hunter Biden, Caroline Biden said, was the only family member she felt she could talk to, because “the majority of my family thinks I’m nuts and untalktoable.” She complained that “our family’s sick,” that she had “no relationship with my nuclear family,” and that she had to “do everything on my fucking own,” including finding a place to live in California.

    That said, Caroline Biden does not appear to have been doing much on her own. Before Caroline Biden reached out to Hunter Biden for help, her father, Jim Biden, had asked Hunter Biden for help with the situation. “I need help with Caroline, she is off the rails,” Jim Biden told Hunter Biden in a July 13 message.

    The idea to have Caroline Biden move to California appears to have been hatched in a follow-up conversation between Jim and Hunter Biden, but it was on Hunter Biden to deliver. Hunter Biden told Jim Biden as early as July 16 that he was looking for rentals in Laguna for his daughter. But by the time of Caroline Biden’s probation meeting when she messaged Hunter Biden about the address, he had still failed to secure a place.

    Read the full article.

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