Tim Profitt, the former Bourbon County campaign coordinator for Kentucky GOP Senate nominee Rand Paul’s campaign, gave the AP a non-apology apology yesterday for stomping on the head of a MoveOn.org activist outside a Senate debate Monday night, saying, “I apologize if it appeared overly forceful.” But apparently his pseudo-remorse was short-lived, as Profitt told local CBS affiliat WKYT today, “I don’t think it’s that big of a deal.” (The Lexington Police think otherwise, issuing Profitt with a criminal summons).
And astonishingly, asked if he planned to apologize directly the activist Lauren Valle whose head he stomped on, Profitt said, “I would like for her to apologize to me to be honest with you.”
This is how the GOP will turn those “outsiders” into insiders!
Not even Canada is safe from the craziness.
UPDATE: He’s been identified to the cops as Mike Pezzano, a Tea Party activist.
I hope the cops arrest this guy. What is it about even the mildest opposition that sends right wingers over the edge?
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB Fox 41) — Outside the Conway-Paul debate, a Rand Paul supporter pulled the woman’s blonde wig off and stomped on her head. She was representing the liberal organization MoveOn.org and claimed to be presenting Paul with an award from RepubliCorp. That’s a group created by MoveOn.org that focuses on what it calls the merger between corporate America and the Republican Party.
“I’m here to present Rand Paul with the ‘Employee of the Month’ award, however his supporters were not very nice to me and my message which is same as everyone else. I got my head stepped on and I have a bit of a headache,” said Lauren Valle, MoveOn.org.
The woman denied police were involved, but right afterwards officers pulled her aside to question her about the incident.
GOP House candidate Jesse Kelly is running for Arizona’s 8th congressional district, and of course embraced that free market fetishism we’ve come to know and love at a campaign rally hosted by the Pima County Tea Party Patriots, telling a questioner it’s our job to protect ourselves from eggs with salmonella:
During a question-and-answer period, a voter asked Kelly about the recent salmonella outbreak, which led to recall of more than half a billion eggs.The voter asked if Kelly, if elected, would he help pass a law that would allow the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and other government agencies to shut down companies that have too many safety violations, such as the companies that allowed millions of eggs that sickened people to be sold to the public.
Kelly responded that he doesn’t “believe what we’re lacking right now is more regulations on companies,” complaining that “you could probably spit on the grass and get arrested by the federal government by now.”
When the voter followed up by asking, “Who’s protecting us?” Kelly responded, “It’s our job to protect ourselves.”
The exasperated voter asked once more, “Am I supposed to go to a chicken farmer and say I’d like you to close down because all of your birds are half dead?” Kelly once more answered, “There’s a new thing that comes along every day. But I know this: Every part of our economy that is regulated by the government doesn’t have fewer disasters, it has more”:
QUESTIONER: Given the salmonella outbreaks that we have seen every three weeks, with the chicken industry, with pesticides and what not that they put onto spinach in order to get the salmonella. We have rules and regulations. However there is no rule mandating that they be enforced. Is there some way when you’re in Congress that you’ll have a bill passed that says instead of having companies voluntarily change, mandate that they must change or give them the ability to shut ‘em down and that goes for mining companies or anyone who has hundreds of violations against ‘em.
KELLY: Here’s the thing with that point, that’s the first time I’ve ever had that question. Congratulations on being unique. First shot out of the box, no ma’am. I do not believe that what we’re lacking right now is a lack of regulations on business. […] You could literally go spit on the grass and get arrested by the federal government if you wanted to right now. […] More regulation, more federal control, giving Nancy Pelosi more power, is not the solution right now.
QUESTIONER: Who’s protecting us?
KELLY: That’s the thing, ma’am, it’s our job to protect ourselves.Because no one else is going to look out for your best interests except for you. […]
QUESTIONER: Am I supposed to go to a chicken farmer and say I’d like you to close down because all of your birds are half dead?
KELLY: I’ve not heard a lot about that recently, obviously there’s a new thing that comes along every day. But I know this, every portion of our economy that is heavily regulated doesn’t have fewer disasters, it has more.
Goes off the deep end when Evil Puppetmaster George Soros (who will secretly pay for my cut, color and mani-pedi, not to mention a new car and complete wardrobe, ’cause he loves him some liberals!) donates $1M to the equally evil Media Matters.
You have to watch the videos, he’s really nuts. To say he preaches non-violence shows such a remarkable lack of self-awareness, I only wish Carl Jung was alive to hear. Here’s my favorite:
I think it’s great that Justice Antonin “Tony The Fixer” Scalia and Clarence “Hey, Who Left A Pubic Hair On My Caffeinated Beverage” Thomas are such good friends, even hanging out with the Koch brothers together. The problem is, no one knows what they were doing at that little ultra-right wing confab – and they ain’t telling.
So I was trying to give them the benefit of the doubt and now I’m wondering: Do you suppose they were the entertainment?
Reports that two Supreme Court Justices have attended seminars sponsored by the energy giant and conservative bankroller Koch Industries has sparked a mild debate over judicial ethics.
On Tuesday evening, the New York Timesreported that an upcoming meeting in Palm Springs of “a secretive network of Republican donors” that was being organized by Koch Industries, “the longtime underwriter of libertarian causes.” Buried in the third to last graph was a note that previous guests at such meetings included Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, two of the more conservative members of the bench.
It’s not rare for a Justice to attend a seminar sponsored by a group with judicial or political interests. Members of the court, for instances, often speak at academic institutions or think tanks. Virtually all companies, meanwhile, are affected by the judicial branch. So long as Scalia and Thomas did not participate in overt partisan activities, there would be no apparent conflict of interest. “There is nothing to prevent Supreme Court justices from hanging out with people who have political philosophies,” said Steven Lubet, a professor of law at Northwestern University who teaches courses on Legal Ethics.
But the Koch event appears more political than, say, the Aspen Ideas festival. In its own invitation, it was described as a “twice a year” gathering “to review strategies for combating the multitude of public policies that threaten to destroy America as we know it.” In addition, it’s not entirely clear what the two Justices did at the Koch event. A copy of the invitation that served as the basis for the Times‘s report was posted by the liberal blog Think Progress. It provided no additional clues. A call to the Supreme Court and an email to a Koch Industries spokesperson meanwhile were not immediately returned.
Faced with a lack of concrete information, and cognizant of Koch’s fairly intense history of political involvement, legal ethicists are urging for more disclosure.
Think Progress, who released the information yesterday, has more:
Scalia and Thomas’ participation in these fundraising gatherings also call into question whether they can be impartial in any number of cases brought by Koch-aligned groups seeking immunity to the law. Most significantly, the Koch brothers have contributed significantly to efforts to stop the Affordable Care Act from going into effect, and a number of attendees at the Koch’s secret meetings include health industry mogulswith a direct financial stake in the litigation challenging health reform (Justice Thomas’ wife, of course, actively lobbied against the Affordable Care Act).
Court observers hoping that Scalia and Thomas will recuse themselves from cases backed by the “Kochtopus” shouldn’t hold their breath, however.
During the Bush Administration, Justice Scalia infamously refused to recuse himself from a suit against Vice President Dick Cheney even after it was revealed that Scalia and Cheney went on a duck hunting trip together during the pendancy of Cheney’s case. Scalia also came under ethical fire when he skipped Chief Justice Roberts’ swearing in ceremony toattend a junket to a Ritz-Carlton resort funded by the right-wing Federalist Society; and Thomas accepted more than $42,000 in free gifts in just six years on the Supreme Court.
At the very least, however, Scalia and Thomas should publicly disclose exactly what role they played in supporting Koch’s secret fundraising network. These fundraising meetings exist for the purpose of eliminating laws and regulations that corporate America does not like, and a sitting Supreme Court justice can do a great deal to advance this purpose (indeed, Scalia and Thomas both already handed an enormous gift to the Koch’s corporate network by joining the egregious decision in Citizens United v. FEC). The two justices’ attendance at these events raise serious questions about whether Scalia and Thomas are deciding cases impartially — or whether they are pushing the exact same agenda as all the Koch events’ other attendees.
This is an interesting situation. Sitting Supreme Court Justices are simply refusing to adhere to the Judical Code of Ethics, reducing their philosophy to two words: “Trust me.”
So what’s our remedy? The standard for impeachment is very high and requires a supermajority of the Senate to convict (although if we were Republicans, we wouldn’t let a silly thing like that stop us!). And it’s not as if the President can call them into his office for a stern talking-to.
In other words, once again, the right-wing bully boys have hijacked one of our country’s institutions, show no signs of anything approaching ethical behavior, and the Democrats will simply wring their hands and say, “What do you want us to do about it?”
It’s always right-wing Republicans like Alaskan teabagger Joe Miller who find freedom of the press so damned unacceptable:
Hopfinger sought comment from Miller about allegations of professional misconduct, which the extremist candidate refuses to address before the election. Miller walked away, and his private security team, all wearing radio earphones, quickly surrounded the reporter. Feeling threatened, Hopfinger reportedly pushed one of the guards away, though the man who was shoved was not injured.
At that point, according to accounts, guards grabbed Hopfinger and placed him in steel handcuffs. The private security team also grabbed Hopfinger’s camera, and according to the reporter, a recorded portion of his “arrest” had been deleted, though Miller’s guards, who refused to be identified, denied erasing anything.
And just to make this truly extraordinary, when other media professionals on hand for the event tried to cover the incident, Miller’s private security team tried to prevent them from talking to Hopfinger — and threaten to “arrest” them, too. The guards also said photographs in the public hallway at the public event were prohibited, though this chilling shot was taken anyway.
The right-wing Miller campaign issued a statement blaming Hopfinger for the incident, but neither the campaign nor the bizarre candidate were willing to answer questions about what transpired. Hopfinger, meanwhile, was released from handcuffs when local police arrived, and at this point, no charges have been filed against anyone.
Miller, a fringe lawyer, is running on a platform premised on his alleged love of the Constitution. He may want to re-read that part about the Bill of Rights.
And in the larger context, I can’t help but wonder: is this what the Tea Party crowd has in mind for America’s future? In their version of “limited government,” should we expect extremists candidates to hire private security forces with the power to detain reporters who ask candidates about their background?
Is this their vision of American “freedom”?