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MTG heckled Jamie Raskin — and Republicans were blamed for her ‘axis’ with Trump and Putin

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U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) shut down Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) after she broke House protocol by heckling his remarks as he called for former top Trump officials Peter Navarro and Dan Scavino to be cited for criminal contempt of Congress.

“What about Ashli Babbitt?” Greene yelled at Raskin, according to The Washington Times. “What about Russian collusion?”

Raskin, a former constitutional law professor at American University Washington College of Law, was undeterred.

“The gentlelady I think said something about ‘the Russian hoax, or ‘Russian collusion.’ I accept the heckling, Mr. Speaker. That’s alright. Because if she wants to continue to stand with Vladimir Putin and his brutal, bloody invasion against the people of Ukraine, she is free to do so – and we understand there is a strong Trump/Putin axis in the gentlelady’s party,” Raskin charged.

“If she wants to continue to stan with Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin that is her prerogative,” Raskin concluded.

The former chairman of the Republican National Committee blasted the Department of Justice on Wednesday for the slow pace the investigation into Donald Trump supporters who sought to overturn the 2020 election.

Michael Steele, who also served as the lieutenant governor of Maryland, joined the panel on MSNBC’s “The Beat” alongside host Ari Melber and legal analyst Elie Mystal, justice correspondent at The Nation.

The host noted to a new report on the investigation by NBC News headlined, “FBI has names of hundreds more Jan. 6 rioters. DOJ needs more lawyers to prosecute them.”

“All of these people should have been arrested on Jan. 6th,” Mystal said. “There’s no reason for Chris Wray, the director of the FBI, to let these people walk out of the capitol. They should have been walked out into a paddy wagon, do not pass go, do not collect $200 — and that should have happened 15 months ago.”

Steele said “this sucks.”

“This just sucks, all around. We watched this, we watched people create, engage in criminal activity. And those in certain communities around this country know that when stuff goes down, you don’t get to go home, right? So all of a sudden, you got people getting back on their buses that were chartered for them by a political party to get them here to storm the Capitol, they get to go home,” Steele said.

“And here we are, 15 months later, and our Justice Department is saying, ‘Well, we’re just finding out we don’t have enough people to prosecute, we’re finding more people who committed wrongdoing.’ If you had your television on, on Jan. 6th, you knew what those numbers were, you knew what this would be like,” he explained. “I don’t think there has been a very serious ramping up here, to understand exactly what this moment meant for the country, because it’s all been clouded by the politics.”

Steele urged action by Attorney General Merrick Garland.

“Call these people up and get them in front of a line-up and do what the criminal justice system requires you to do. You won’t think about it with a riot in Watts or Southeast D.C. nobody will say, ‘Y’all go home, we’ll call you back later.’ That’s not how it works and we watched that,” he explained. “The part that sucks for so many Americans is how frustrating it is to hear people pretend and just act like we’re not watching them do that. So, yeah. the vinegar is, January 6th [Committee] will die this November, on the first Tuesday in November, when the country decides to give power back to the party that caused the damn insurrection. And what do you think they’re going to do with it?”

On Wednesday, The Daily Beast reported that John Michalski, a former New York State Supreme Court judge, was found dead of suicide in his home — as a federal investigation appeared to be escalating against him.

“Just 12 days earlier, his home had been raided by state and federal law enforcement officers on a search warrant,” reported Dia Gill. “Michalski had reportedly been under investigation for ‘several years,’ according to The Buffalo News.”

“His suicide comes a year after he was struck by a freight train in what was believed to have been another suicide attempt,” noted the report. “Michalski was hit by the train the same day that former client and strip club owner Peter Gerace Jr. was charged with drug and sex trafficking and bribing a federal agent. Days later, Michaelski was taken in for questioning about his friendship with Gerace.”

Defense Attorney Terrence Connors told The Buffalo News that his suicide is “heartbreaking” and added that his legal problems appeared to have been “manageable.”

“The friendship between the judge and Gerace began decades ago when Michalski was in private practice and performed legal work for Gerace’s strip club, according to attorney Anthony J. Lana, who was also representing the judge,” noted The Buffalo News. “In 2006, when Gerace was awaiting sentencing for a felony wire fraud conviction related to his sweepstakes telemarketing business, Michalski wrote a letter to U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny, asking him to show leniency for his friend. In his letter, Michalski described Gerace as a client and friend for nearly a decade.”

No charges had ever been filed against the judge.

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On Wednesday, the Iowa Association of Black Journalists released a statement condemning the attempted exclusion of KCCI News reporter Lauren Johnson from the Ankeny School District’s meeting on Monday.

“The Ankeny School District’s decision to try and restrict KCCI Reporter Lauren Johnson, a Black Female journalist, from covering a school board meeting is reprehensible, anti-democratic, and impedes the rights of a free press,” said the statement, which was retweeted by the Iowa Capitol Press. “To make matters worse, the decision to prevent a journalist of color from covering a meeting about the district’s decision to remove a posting for a position that tackles diversity, equity and inclusivity within Ankeny Schools speaks volumes. It also provides another example of why that position may be necessary.”

“Public meetings are public meetings,” continued the statement. “Period.”

The ICPA stands in solidarity with the IABJ on this matter. Reporters are the eyes and ears of the public, and must have proper access to cover government\u2019s work on behalf of the people. We encourage Ankeny schools to continue its dialogue with IABJ.https://twitter.com/iabjofficial/status/1511516087220940809\u00a0\u2026

— Iowa Capitol Press Association (@Iowa Capitol Press Association)

According to Johnson’s account of what happened that evening, she was initially told she wasn’t allowed in despite contacting the board’s communications team in advance to let them know she would be covering the meeting. When she protested, the district’s attorney accused her of being “loud” and told her to watch the proceedings on the livestream.

This incident occurred amid race controversies at schools in Iowa; in January, parents in Pleasant Valley sued over a TikTok video in which students wore blackface and conducted a mock execution.

The school district formally apologized to Johnson.

A statement from Superintendent Dr. Erick Pruitt.pic.twitter.com/YqmylhmScd

— Ankeny Schools (@Ankeny Schools)

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