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Elections

Nancy Pelosi Gonna Brain #FiveWhiteGuys With Gavel OF DEATH

Go sit in the back of the class, dudes.

The anticipated electoral "blue wave" now feels more like a riptide: You don't see it coming and then it murders you. Every day since the election, we wake up to more flipped seats. California, especially, is a blood bath. Dave Wasserman pointed out that Orange County will have no Republican representatives in the House. Let that sink in. As of today, Democrats have taken 34 seats from Republicans, along with their milk money. That number should go as high as 38, maybe 40. It's no wonder architect of our success Nancy Pelosi has coasted to presumptive Speaker of the House with a pro forma closed-door vote. No, wait, that's Chuck Schumer.

It has been the measured opinion of this publication that Schumer is a big, steaming flop. He is the perfect choice for Senate Minority Leader if you are interested in permanently remaining in the minority. If that's your goal, Chuck's your man. But if you want to kick Republican ass ... twice, Pelosi is a no brainer. Unfortunately, mediocre men can rarely hang with powerful women.

Now five spineless white guys, basically blobs of generic brand mayonnaise, are feverishly attempting to block Pelosi as the next Speaker. None of them, including yoga instructor Tim Ryan, have the guts to step forward themselves, but now they're positing Marcia Fudge, because who hates women, NOT THEM; all they know is they don't want Pelosi. Why? Because of her track record of success? She's a "goddamn legislative virtuoso." Next? She's a liberal from San Francisco? Schumer is from New York. He's probably never even seen a pickup truck with a gun rack on the back!

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Russia

Master Of Disguise! Wonkagenda For Thurs., Nov. 15, 2018

Trump is a lunatic, Nancy Pelosi prepares for battle, and Facebook really shits the bed. Your morning news brief!

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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Politics

Mitch McConnell Is A Shifty-Eyed Goobledonker (Also His Op-Ed Sucks)

He really is a clueless dork too.

If the world was a reasonable place, it would be entirely illegal to be as self -serving and full of shit as Mitch McConnell. In a desperate and pitiful play to shame Democrats into folding over like a bunch of beach chairs and coalescing around the Trump Train, that shifty-eyed turtle-faced goobledonker (I made that up and it fits, use it) decided to write himself an op-ed. Wait until you get a load of the title of his masterful self-own, you ready? Ok, here it is: "Will Dems work with us, or simply put partisan politics ahead of the country?"

Are you dead yet? Many of us Democrats saw that headline and keeled over from the hell-ified audacity of Mr. Dorkface Obstruction Man trying to project his shit onto us. We can't be the only ones who remember a certain senator (surprise, it was Mitch McConnell!) saying his main goal was to make Obama a one-term president while he did everything he could to obstruct the Democrats. Oh yeah, and also MERRICK FUCKING GARLAND.

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Post-Racial America

Jim Jordan To GOP: What If We Were Big Stupid Liars Like Trump? You Know, HYPOTHETICALLY

Yes, it's because they're not Trumpy enough.

Ohio congressman Jim Jordan would very much like to become speaker of the House (not gonna happen), or even leader of the loser Republicans (not gonna happen), and he knows exactly how to make congressional Republicans popular with the American people again: Just be even bigger dicks and then everyone will elect them, once they're finally as bugfuck insane "intense" as President Grumpypouts. The former head of the House Freedom Caucus made his case on "Fox & Friends": Be like Trump, but turn it up to 15, because eleven is for pussies.

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Elections

Senator Sinema. Wonkagenda For Tues., Nov. 13, 2018

Sinema wins Arizona election, Trump's just going to "You're Fired" everyone, and the Facebook tries to fix its shitshow. Your morning news brief.

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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Science

Dana Rohrabacher Curious If Kremlin Having A Job Fair Anytime Soon, Or ...

Blue Wave knocks out Russia's congressman, SAD!

The Associated Press finally called the race in California's 48th Congressional District late Saturday for Democratic challenger Harley Rouda, bringing an end to nearly 30 years in Congress for US Rep. Dana Rohrabacher. Over the years, Rohrabacher had represented not only his super-conservative Orange County district, but also the Taliban and Russia, and as his district has become more liberal -- or at least less frothingly rightwing John Birch Society-esque -- it was probably only a matter of time until his seat went blue. Rohrabacher's enthusiastic defenses of Donald Trump and of Vladimir Putin only hastened the swing this year. Too bad, so sad!

Let us bid a fond but not drawn out farewell to one of Congress's more spectacular idiots while we hope he's joined by many others, soon.

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Elections

GOP Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith Is A Mississippi Goddam ... Racist

Lynching humor!

Mississippi Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith made a gross comment earlier this month that is both clueless of history and casually racist. On November 2, just before the midterm election, she was at a campaign event with cattle rancher Colin Hutchinson. Demonstrating just how "ride or die" she was for Hutchinson, she boasted, "If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row!"

This is an odd statement because public hangings are historically general admission. Maybe she's saying she'd be willing to camp out overnight to ensure she can watch some poor bastard dance at the end of a rope like a common psychopath. She is, of course, un-ironically "100 percent pro-life," because life has value until it's born. Eventually ending that life in a sickening, extrajudicial manner is a pleasant spectator sport. Bring the popcorn.

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Congress

Infowars Loons And Proud Boys Swarm Florida To Demand They Stop Counting Votes.

What if they count all the votes and Rick Scott loses? What then? How would that be fair?

Once upon a time, a very terrible man who is now dead halted the counting of votes in Florida because doing so would cast "a cloud upon what he claims to be the legitimacy of his election." The "he" in this case was one George W. Bush, and had those votes been counted, had the butterfly ballot used by Florida not led to many people accidentally voting for Pat Buchanan, Al Gore would have been our president, we probably would have never gone to war with Iraq, and things probably would have been a lot nicer across the board. We might have even had less fucked up elections were this not a thing people felt they could get away with.

Of course, at that time, the Supreme Court was not the only one demanding Gore give up. Even many people who considered themselves Democrats at the time were going the route of "OH MY GOD THIS IS SOOOOOOO EMBARRASSING, JUST STAHP!" and demanding Gore do the "statesman-like" thing and concede. And he did.

This year, however? Shit is changing, and Democratic candidates are not so easily shamed into backing down, especially when things are looking shady. Stacey Abrams is holding out in Georgia, where votes were clearly screwed with, waiting until all the votes have been counted in Arizona -- despite the preferences of the Arizona GOP -- has led to Krysten Sinema taking a significant lead against Martha McSally, and in Florida, Democrat Bill Nelson is refusing to back down until all the votes are counted, despite the fact that Rick Scott has already declared victory.

In Florida, if the vote margin is less than 0.5 percent, the state's election rules will require a recount. Because of the way things are done now, two of Florida's more liberal counties -- Palm Beach and Broward County -- have not yet finished counting mail-in ballots, Broward hasn't finished counting early ballots, and many other counties have yet to finish counting provisional ballots. However, according to Marco Rubio and Donald Trump, counting these ballots amounts to trying to steal an election. Or, as they say, cast a cloud on what Rick Scott believes is the legitimacy of his election.

Naturally, the Right is panicking, and a cabal of conspiracy theorists led by Roger Stone -- whom you may recall led the Brooks Brothers Riot of 2000, when a bunch of Republican operatives got extremely violent trying to intimidate vote counters into stopping -- have descended upon Broward county to demand the vote counting stop. They also think that Nelson is trying to steal the election by adding in a bunch of fake ballots or something. Basically, they don't understand the way any of this works or where the ballots are coming from, and have filled in the blanks themselves. Which, historically, has been a stupid idea.

The Daily Beast reports:

Former Infowars reporter Joe Biggs declared on Twitter that he was heading to Florida to stop "radical leftists."
Right-wing activist Laura Loomer, a former James O'Keefe associate who has made her name by yelling at prominent Democrats in a stunt that she calls "Loomering", said on Twitter that she too was headed to Broward and planned to meet with Stone.

"I'll #Loomer the whole state of Florida if that's what it takes," Loomer tweeted.

Ali Alexander, a pro-Trump figure who runs a PAC bankrolled by the billionaire Mercer family, claimed that he would recruit both believers in the ludicrous QAnon conspiracy theory and homeless people to picket the Board of Elections.

Truly, a star-studded event if ever there was one. Also participating in the event are a group of Proud Boys, the violent Republican street gang known for stomping on people they disagree with and also acting as Stone's bodyguards.

A judge held on Friday afternoon that Broward County release the number of votes they have left to count, in hopes of appeasing the conspiracy theorists, but that will be unlikely to happen as they will then just come up with another thing.

Regardless of how these elections turn out, the fact that these candidates were not cowed by Republican whines to just concede already is a victory and a huge deal in and of itself. Not only because it takes away their power, but because standing up for every person's vote to be counted, demanding they be counted, is the right thing to do for our country. It's what they should be doing.

[Daily Beast]

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Congress

Fox News Can't Believe Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Won't Sell Clothes She Doesn't Own To Pay DC Rent

Ed Henry is America's pre-eminent AOC poverty truther!

This Tuesday, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the youngest woman ever elected to Congress, earning 78 percent of the votes in New York's 14th district. On Wednesday, the New York Times published a very nice profile of her, in which she explained that it was going to be difficult for her, a person who had most recently been making 29K a year, to afford to live in in Washington, DC -- a place with a very high cost-of-living -- for three months without a salary.

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2018 State and Local Elections

Lucy McBath Going To Congress! Dana Rohrabacher Probably Going Home To Russia, Or Maybe Jail!

The Blue Wave is bigger than we thought, y'all.

There are so many House races (and Senate races and gubernatorial races) still uncalled, but it looks like the Blue Wave is getting bigger and wavier! So far the Dems have gained more than enough seats to take the House, and a shitload are still outstanding but many of them look very good for us. Yay!

This tweet from GOP Rep. Karen Handel of Georgia's 6th district is the sweetest thing we have seen in a whole day:

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Culture

Trump Topples Confederate Monument Jeff Sessions. No One Black Will Miss Him

The line to dance on Sessions's political grave starts behind the ghost of Coretta Scott King.

Jeff Sessions "resigned" as attorney general Wednesday, and African Americans across the country living, dead, and somewhere in between, are rejoicing. Now, we are sensible people. We understand that Donald Trump whacked Sessions for no honorable reason, almost certainly to obstruct justice in the Russia investigation. We get that the acting attorney general, Matthew Whitaker, literally wrote a cover letter for the job posing as a CNN op-ed stating that Robert Mueller's investigation had "gone too far."

Just listen to us for a moment, white people: We know that Trump is shredding the rule of law and we've just advanced a few rounds in the fascism home game. We're going to be sad later, but just let us be happy right now. And, baby, are we happy.

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Science

House Science Committee Actually Gonna Do Some Science Now!

We'll Always Have the Paris Agreement.

"I don't think we can control what God controls."

Do you know who said that? This pendejo, hijo de puta:

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Guns

Midterms Fairly Good For TAKIN' ALL YR GUNS

Gun Sense spending way up, NRA spending WAY down.

With all the Trumpfuckery clouding every single aspect of the midterms, it would be easy to overlook any single issue that isn't the suddenly-vanished (maybe, for a day) existential threat posed by some terrifying Central American families fleeing for their lives. But hey, turns out the midterm outcomes showed definite gains for candidates calling for saner gun laws. Maybe the USA won't be turning into a liberty-free hellscape like Australia, which went from 1996 to 2018 without any mass shootings. But there's definitely hope for saner gun policy, starting with Tuesday's election results.

Seems like some sanity might be in order, since we drafted this story yesterday afternoon and now we're all waking up to yet another massacre, this time in Thousand Oaks, California, where Wednesday night a previously responsible gun owner shot and killed 12 people, including a sheriff's sergeant, at a nightclub full of college students. Time for thoughts and prayers and doing nothing more, we guess.

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Russia

Jim Acosta: American Hero. Wonkagenda For Thurs., Nov. 8, 2018

Another mass shooting, the White House revokes Jim Acosta's press pass, and House Republicans start stabbing each other in the face. Your morning news brief.

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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