Sarah Burris

MSNBC's Tiffany Cross slams GOP as  'weird, creepy white guy party' of abusers, rapists and Matt Gaetz

Former President Donald Trump released a statement attacking NBA player Lebron James. Evidently, the former president "came out of hiding," MSNBC's Joy Reid said, because he was so triggered by James posting a photo of the police officer who shot and killed a 16-year-old girl in Ohio this week.

Fellow MSNBC host Tiffany Cross, whose show "The Crossfire Connection" airs on weekend mornings, flatly said, "Who cares what Trump has to say." James, she explained was expressing his feelings as a Black man in pain for his community. Trump's pain is still election-related or related to being called impotent on Fox News ads.

"Speaking of bums," Reid interjected. "Matt Gaetz is begging for money. He says he wants to run some ads to try to help himself. There is an interesting piece in ProPublica that talks about the fact all of these far-right figures like Matt Gaetz, like Marjorie Taylor Greene, et cetera, Josh Hawley. They all sort of go out and make it seem like every time there is a controversy, they are raising tons of money. But it's not really clear that that's happening. These organizations, that are gleaning money from sometimes in small donations from, you know, Republican donors. A lot of the time, they are keeping most of the money. And the fundraising isn't really real. It's kind of smoke and mirrors. Do you think that we, in the media -- you wrote a great book, 'Say It Louder,' Tiffany cross, about the media. do we need to maybe take a step back before touting everything crazy they do is major fundraising? because sometimes, it's really not true."

Cross agreed, saying that as a reporter, she and others must peel away the headline and find the source and substance. But it was her comments about Gaetz and the Republican Party's embrace of him and those like him that got her fired up. She recalled one of the first interviews done with Matt Gaetz in which she raked him over about the NRA. "People should Google it."

"But also we have to remember he is the accused of sex trafficking a 17-year-old girl," said Cross. "So when you are asking people to contribute to your defense for such a heinous crime, it makes you wonder what kind of weird, creepy white guy party is this where they defend accused pedophiles like Roy Moore, where they defend accused wife beaters like some of the speechwriters from the Trump administration, and racists like Marjorie Taylor Greene. it is a weird thing happening in the GOP. Honestly, it has been the only Republican Party I have known. I think it is just more public now."

See the discussion below:

weird creepy

Bombshell report outs Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for lying to people about COVID-19

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis spent the majority of 2020 misleading his state on the facts around the COVID-19 crisis. A bombshell report from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel detailed the ways in which DeSantis suppressed bad news, spread "dangerous misinformation," and ignored inconvenient facts about the virus.

"The DeSantis administration's approach to managing COVID-19 information carries costs," the report said. "It supports a climate in which people proudly disdain masks, engage in dangerous group activities that could spread the disease, and brush aside information that conflicts with their political views. With partygoers packing Florida bars and holiday travelers filling hotels and guest rooms, the state faces a few difficult months before the possible relief of vaccines."

Early on in the pandemic, DeSantis was attacked for his downplaying of the virus in a state known for having a lot of elderly residents. In one scandal, DeSantis blocked public health experts from revealing the true rate of infection in Florida. Even today, the truthful number of infections and deaths for the past year isn't known. Even when there was an uptick in cases, DeSantis dismissed it as a "blip," which drew attacks from healthcare experts working in hospitals.

As the virus continued to spread, DeSantis ignored it to such a degree that newspapers around the state began to beg him for help publicly.

A July expose from the Washington Post labeled DeSantis a "failure" for opting to prioritize politics "divorced from scientific evidence."

"As Florida became a global epicenter of the coronavirus, Gov. Ron DeSantis held one meeting this month with his top public health official, Scott Rivkees, according to the governor's schedule. His health department has sidelined scientists, halting briefings last month with disease specialists and telling the experts there was not sufficient personnel from the state to continue participating," the newspaper reported.

In the Sun-Sentinel report cites "50 people, including scientists, doctors, political leaders, employees of the state health department, and other state officials, as well as more than 4,000 pages of documents." The extensively-sourced reporting walks through a shocking timeline of intentional actions that lead to the deaths of thousands.

"He is encouraging people who are of the opinion that the virus is not as severe and profound as others say it is and putting politics before science," the report cited Thomas Unnasch, co-director of the Center for Global Health and Infectious Disease Research at the University of South Florida.

Read the bombshell report at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

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Conservative Charlie Sykes tells Trump if he wants a pardon — he'll have to admit he's guilty first

Editor and creator of The Bulwark, Charlie Sykes, told MSNBC's Joy Reid that the most "Trumpy" of things President Donald Trump could do is pardon himself ahead of leaving office in January.

After the president pardoned ret. Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, it sparked new anticipation on how Trump will protect himself from prosecution after leaving office. Trump was alleged to have committed at least ten acts of obstruction of justice by special counsel Robert Mueller. In that case, the Justice Department followed the internal rule that sitting presidents could not be indicted. Then, it stands to reason that the Justice Department would also follow a 1974 memo from the same Office of Legal Counsel that said a president could not pardon himself.

"Under the fundamental rule that no one may be a judge in his own case, the President cannot pardon himself," said Mary C. Lawton, Acting Assistant Attorney General at the time.

With former President Richard Nixon, it was former President Gerald Ford who pardoned him. So, Trump could usher in the 25th Amendment so that for a short period, Mike Pence was the president and Pence could then pardon Trump. It's a scheme that Sykes says wouldn't surprise him.

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), a former federal prosecutor, said that he doesn't think the federal courts would recognize such a pardon if Trump tried to do it.

Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner noted that if Trump was ultimately prosecuted for his obstructions of justice that Flynn would have no choice but to testify in the case.

"Once you have been pardoned, your Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination is extinguished and you can be compelled to testify about anything that otherwise might incriminate you," he explained. "So, yes, the Michael Flynns of the world could be forced to the witness stand just like Steve Bannon was forced. However, Joy, I predict he will instruct somebody to type up a part that says, 'I, Donald Trump, hereby pardon Donald Trump,' and that proves the point that we have to be prepared to fight corrupt pardons. Just like I maintain, it was a corrupt sentence commutation that he doled out to Roger Stone because Roger Stone was a coconspirator. So, the very act of delivering that sentence commutation was a criminal act in furtherance of a conspiracy to obstruct justice. So, I maintain -- I know Charlie and I might part ways a little bit -- these matters will have to be addressed by the incoming attorney general because corrupt pardons cannot be permitted to stand unchallenged."

Sykes explained that it's going to be difficult for Trump to resist issuing a pardon for himself because he faces a slate of legal problems when he gets out of office.

"But I want you to think about this for a moment," Sykes continued. "I think that it is unlawful. I think it's unconstitutional, but it will also be seen by the American people as an abuse of power and an admission of guilt. When you accept a pardon, there is the imputation of guilt. So, if Donald Trump is sitting there on his final day in office, he's got to decide, does he really want to run in 2024? Because if he does want to run for re-election in 2024 self-pardon would be a political disaster. I think that there would be a huge political backlash against it."

At the same time, because Trump is also facing state crimes in New York for tax and bank fraud, it doesn't absolve him from those concerns.

"But it would be the ultimate Trumpian moment of arrogance, narcissism, self-dealing, of putting himself above the law for him to do it, which is why it is completely conceivable that that will happen," Sykes closed.

See the video below:

Clinical psychologist predicts what life after Trump will be like — and how the president will respond if he loses

Clinical psychologist Dr. Alan Blotcky, Ph.D. spoke to Raw Story Tuesday to walk through what he thinks voters will see from President Donald Trump in the upcoming week ahead of the election.

While Dr. Blotcky isn't part of the "Duty To Warn" movement, he does support it and he explained how mental health experts have been able to diagnose the president without ever having him sit in their offices.

"The most important information that a mental health professional can get is observable behavior," he explained. "It's not just his observable behavior we have access to. We have thousands of examples of his tweets, of his statements, of his interviews, his audios, his videos. So, we have many years of his accumulated information directly from him both verbally and behaviorally. Yes, we don't get to meet with him in our office in a one-on-one session. And that's important because that would give us even more information into his thinking and feeling. But having access to vast amounts of verbal statements and behaviors is crucial."

Dr. Blotcky explained that Trump is "so obviously impaired and so obviously disordered" that it would even be difficult to find a mental health professional who wouldn't agree with that assessment after four years in office.

For anyone who thinks Trump is merely playing the role of an angry politician, he explained that throughout Trump's life, he's been consistent in his narcissism.

"If you look at the whole of his life it's very consistent," he said. "It's outlandish to think this is just an act. This is him."

As Trump goes into the final week of his campaign, Dr. Blotcky anticipates seeing more desperation from Trump. He thinks that Trump will bring more "wild accusations, conspiracy theories and threats." It has become clear that the president is reverting to what worked for him in 2016, "his old bag of tricks," as Dr. Blotcky described it. The only difference is that this time around, it not only isn't working to move the needle, but his multi-rally strategy is also serving as superspreader events.

"I think he's going to throw out any outlandish things he can think of, hoping that something will stick," said the psychologist.

In a normal campaign, the candidate would be pivoting to something that actually works to expand their base of support. Trump is sticking with his existing supporters, even if that means he won't have enough of them next Tuesday.

"That's why he always doubles down, triples-down, quadruples-down," said. Dr. Blotcky. "He can't [change] because to change would be a sign of weakness or failure. And he always thinks he's right. He thinks he's the smartest person on the planet. He thinks he knows more than the experts. He thinks he knows more than the scientists. And so, what he thinks automatically becomes the prevailing strategy on his part and he can't pivot. He's incapable of pivoting. I think it comes from his psychiatric disorder. I think he is so grandiose and so self-absorbed that he can't see outside himself. And I don't even think he understands that he needs to pivot because I think he thinks he's right. And if he's right, there's nothing to talk about."

For the every-day self-aware person who is capable of being insightful and psychologically minded, that level of delusion isn't an option.

"I think until recently he has thought of himself as unstoppable," said Dr. Blotcky. "And I think he still thinks he's unstoppable. I think he thinks he's going to pull it out in the end just like he did in 2016 and if he can get it to the courts his new Supreme Court Justice will help tip the scales."

If Trump loses, Dr. Blotcky thinks he will play the victim card, allege the election was rigged, there is a conspiracy against him and that mail-in votes shouldn't even be counted.

"I think he's going to turn to his attorney general to try and get him to begin some actions," he continued. "I think he's going to try and take it to the courts and I think he's going to try to give the message to his supporters all around the country that he is the victim, that he is aggrieved, and that they need to support him in his victimhood."

For Trump's supporters, even those who held their noses and voted for him four years ago, Trump has been able to tap in them a kind of grievance that they have been ignored by politicians.

"They believe in him because they feel aggrieved," said Dr. Blotcky. "They feel like the political system has left them behind. They feel like victims. So, I think they identify with him and I think they like chaos. They like the rebelliousness of this president. They want to turn the political system upside down because they feel like the system has hurt them. So, he is kind of their supreme leader as far as wreaking havoc in the political system. When he says ridiculous things, they cheer him on because he's expressing their own pent-up frustrations and feelings our system has left them behind and have hurt them."

One of Trump's greatest accomplishments has been in fearmongering and painting former Vice President Joe Biden as a socialist to people who don't know what that even means has been a successful tactic. It's one that the GOP has employed for years, but such an accusation isn't as effective as people understand American socialist programs like Medicare, the interstate system and public schools.

"What he's been successful at is selling the idea that Joe Biden and the Democrats are socialists and they're going to change your neighborhood and that your way of life is going to be vastly different," said Dr. Blocky. "I think there's a group of Republicans that buy that. I know some people that buy that."

Trump's claim that somehow neighborhoods are going to become chaos-driven riot-zones is a "fabrication," he said, but "fearmongering works."

It is possible to bring those people back from that, but Dr. Blotcky says it will come with Biden including them as part of his new administration.

"If you cut off the head, which is Trump, I think there is going to be residual stuff, but I think if Joe Biden keeps talking about being the president for all Americans, and not just Democrats, that's the strategy. That's the attitude you have to have — that our new president has to be the president for all of us, and they have to listen to him," Dr. Blotcky went on. "A lot of his supporters, I see them in the crowds, are people who really have been left behind by this economy and they feel like they are not listened to or valued. And I think one of the major functions of the president is to listen to everybody and have everybody feel like we're a part of what we're trying to do in this democracy."

In the immediate aftermath, Dr. Blotcky agrees that the Trump supporters will still take to the streets and that there will be violence, but that Biden will have the capacity to calm the nation much more so than Trump.

"If [Trump] gets agitated and riled up, you're going to see a lot of his supporters get agitated and riled up," he explained.

In an interview Monday, Cindy, a self-described Republican evangelical explained that her children were kind and thoughtful in how they spoke to her about the election and helped her walk through options because she didn't like Trump, but still had conservative issues she was dedicated to. Dr. Blotcky agreed that the soft and kind way of speaking to Trump supporters is the best way to help move them. For some, he acknowledged that it's never going to work, but for those who are looking for other options in the final week of the election, it's the best way to persuade. No one moves voters by screaming "you're wrong!" at them.

As the U.S. goes into the holiday season, he explained that's the best way to get through with your families. Yelling and screaming over politics never persuades anyone.

Dr. Blotcky closed by reinforcing that what Trump has done to diminish the dangers of the coronavirus has been reckless and criminal.

"Donald Trump has made the decision that losing American lives is fine. Our very lives have become unimportant, ignorable, even forgettable to him," he wrote for in May.

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