Trump pardons highlight GOP corruption problems

“Strong Island Hawk” reviews President Donald Trump’s recent pardons, which were largely political. -promoted by Laura Belin

Last month President-De-Elect Donald Trump issued executive pardons for dozens of people, including many of his former campaign officials and Republican colleagues. Many of these pardons were entirely political and, what’s worse, they absolved individuals for acts of public corruption. When this happened, a thought crossed my mind: Is the Republican Party now entirely corrupt?

In fact, I think it’s an issue that goes unnoticed by the media and even by some Democrats: today’s Republican Party may be so thoroughly corrupt it’s nearly systemic.
No party holds a monopoly on ethical behavior; Democrats have certainly had their troubles over the years. But the GOP may be experiencing an era of unprecedented party-wide corruption. I want to look at a handful of the most political cases and examine how they demonstrate the GOP’s indifferent approach to government ethics. 

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Wednesday

Ira Lacher: “If there were any discussion, Wednesday’s events should eliminate it. Trump needs to be impeached. Again. And criminally charged with inciting sedition.” -promoted by Laura Belin

Wednesday, January 6, America witnessed an armed insurrection. Revolt. Treason. It was fomented by the president of the United States.

The Atlanta Journal and Constitution reported: “Hours before unrest hit the Capitol, President Donald Trump arrived to his rally to embolden supporters to charge the U.S. Capitol Wednesday to show ‘fight’ for his unsubstantiated claims of election fraud ahead of a congressional vote count to affirm Joe Biden’s election victory.”

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Trump pardons GOP operatives who bought Kent Sorenson's endorsement

They weren’t the most heinous pardons President Donald Trump issued this week. Those went to former military contractors who slaughtered civilians in Iraq.

They weren’t the most corrupt pardons Trump issued this week. Those went to campaign associates who participated in Russian interference in the 2016 election and then covered for Trump during special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

Nevertheless, two pardons announced on December 23 had an Iowa connection that may interest Bleeding Heartland readers.

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How prison abolition could save rural America

Casey Erixon: Mounting evidence suggests that prisons add little to local economies and may do more harm than good to the rural communities that host them. -promoted by Laura Belin

In the wake of the Democrats’ mixed success in the 2020 elections, many party elites have taken to blaming progressive activists, and Black Lives Matter organizers in particular, for costing the party votes in key rural areas. Most prominently U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger was characterized as “speaking hard truths” when, on a post-election conference call with House leadership, she claimed that calls by activists to defund the police were used in attack ads against her and other candidates from so-called red districts.

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Matt Whitaker blocked criminal case against Turkish bank

Matt Whitaker’s unfailing loyalty to Donald Trump apparently extended to helping the president quash a criminal investigation of a foreign bank, according to an explosive new story by Eric Lipton and Benjamin Weiser in the New York Times.

While serving (unconstitutionally) as acting U.S. attorney general after the 2018 election, Whitaker blocked a probe of Halkbank, “a state-owned Turkish bank suspected of violating U.S. sanctions law by funneling billions of dollars of gold and cash to Iran.”

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Most Iowans with felony convictions still not registered to vote

Only a small fraction of newly eligible Iowans have registered to vote since Governor Kim Reynolds issued an executive order restoring voting rights to most people who have completed felony sentences.

Justin Surrency was first to report for WHO-TV on October 19 that 2,550 Iowans with felony convictions had registered to vote since the governor’s order. Erin Murphy reported for Lee Newspapers on October 20,

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