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— Publisher’s Note —
Good morning! The news continues to move at a breakneck speed, both in DC and in Frankfort:The GOP passed six of their priority bills and sent them on to the governor, who has said he will veto many of them (if not all of them). The GOP will override his vetoes, and then it’s off to court we go. The 25th Amendment and impeachment are both still in play, with some new twists in the story (below). The details and back story on the attack on the Capitol continue to come out, and they continue to become both more horrifying and more concerning, including some indications that the attack was not spontaneous, but planned – and possibly with help from inside the government. And of course, there is still the pandemic, along with the vaccine rollout, which has its own challenges and dropped balls.My emotions about all of this continue to vaccilate among worry, anger, and sadness. And yet, there are moments of grounding, and of hope. Interactions with other good people, even through Zoom. Seeing clear-eyed statements of loyalty to the Constitution and to our democracy, from both sides of the aisle.
And watching the video by Arnold Schwarzenegger. That may strike you as odd, but it is truly one of the better things I’ve seen in the past week. It’s linked below. Give it a watch; I think you will also find it moving and hopeful.
Today’s Five Things to Know
1/10 update — Positivity rate keeps climbing; most cases ever on a Sunday
The pandemic in Kentucky kept accelerating Sunday. The positivity rate was at 12.45%, the highest since May when testing was limited. There were 3,232 new cases reported. And the New York Times map showed all counties but one in the red zone. (Forward Kentucky)
GOP-run legislature passes six bills in five days – four to limit governor’s powers in the middle of a pandemic
In rare Saturday meetings, the #KYGA21 Republican supermajorities passed six of their priority bills, four aimed at limiting Democratic Gov. Beshear’s powers and two to further regulate abortion. (Forward Kentucky)
Armed protesters gather outside KY Capitol, rail against McConnell, Paul and Beshear
Dozens of heavily armed people gathered outside the Kentucky Capitol building Saturday to rail against socialism, communism, Sen. Rand Paul, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Gov. Andy Beshear.
Several members of the Kentucky State Police looked on as members of the group, composed of people from self-described “militias,” made speeches interspersed with live performances of country songs. Some in the crowd held flags or wore hats supporting President Donald Trump.
Beshear denounced the protesters on Twitter, saying he wouldn’t be bullied. “Three days after domestic terrorists attacked our U.S. Capitol, there was a militia rally in Frankfort,” Beshear wrote. “They brought zip ties. We will not be intimidated. We will not be bullied. America is counting on the real patriots. Those who condemn hate and terror when they see it.” (Herald-Leader)
Pelosi says House will impeach Trump unless VP forces ouster
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday the House will proceed with legislation to impeach President Donald Trump unless the vice president and Cabinet invoke constitutional authority to force him out, calling Trump a threat to democracy after the deadly assault on the Capitol.
If Pence and cabinet don’t act, House will proceed on Monday. First vote would be on a resolution calling on calling on Pence and Cabinet officials to invoke the 25th Amendment. Under rules when the full House is not convened, any objection would reject the resolution. Pelosi would then put the resolution before the full House on Tuesday. If it were to pass, Pence and the Cabinet would have 24 hours to act before the House would move toward impeachment.
The current impeachment documents contain a single article: incitement to insurrection. The strategy would be to condemn the president’s actions swiftly but delay an impeachment trial in the Senate for 100 days. That would allow President-elect Joe Biden to focus on other priorities as soon as he is inaugurated Jan. 20. And, it would guarantee a Democrat-led Senate to hear the charges. (Kentucky Today)
Osborne forms committee to explore impeaching Governor Beshear
In response to a petition, House Speaker David Osborne is forming a special committee to look into impeaching Governor Beshear. According to Osborne, the state constitution requires such action, and the committee could choose to do nothing.
More than one person has pointed out that such petitions have been sent to legislative leadership for years, and almost always the petitions were sent to the Judiciary Committee (a standing committee) to be heard and to die there.
Recent Content on Forward Kentucky
[new] indicates item not in a Forward Five before
🔥 indicates high # of reads, social media shares, or both
[New] The People’s House is now a crime scene – Our corrupt, deranged president, his sycophants, and the silence of his complicit enablers set the stage for the January 6th crimes in the People’s house. (Commentary)
[New] 🔥 A moving reflection by Arnold Schwarzenegger on Wednesday’s events, the enablers, and our country – Kristallnacht. Brownshirts. Men who were ashamed of what they had done, and who they had become. And, what we have to do to get past Wednesday’s events. (Video)
[New] We’ve expelled members of Congress before. We should do it now as well. – Sen. Hawley, allow me to introduce Sen. Polk, your fellow Missourian. Congressman Rogers, meet Congressman Burnett, a Kentuckian like you. Both were expelled from Congress. It’s time to do that again. (Commentary)
[New] 🔥 Dear Speaker Osborne – You CHOSE to take up impeachment. But, we have an answer. – Speaker Osborne said he HAD to entertain the request for impeachment of the Governor by appointing a special committee. The truth is, he did not. But, if he’s going to take that position, let’s take him at his word! (Commentary)
[New] 2 anti-abortion bills are sent again to Beshear; opponents still say neither is necessary – Two abortion-related bills were passed yesterday in #KYGA21: the so-called “born alive” bill, and one that gives the attorney general new power to regulate abortion care providers. (News)
[New] 🔥 An honest assessment of the Kentucky Democratic Party from the youngest person in leadership – Ariana Velasquez was elected to the KDP executive committee when she was 17 and in high school. Now, five years later, she shares some insights she has gained as to how to make KDP better. (Commentary)
[New] TSOK: Let’s talk about “Beyond Breonna” – We talk with the journalists from the Courier-Journal who created the series “Beyond Breonna,” which looks at systemic racism in Louisville. This is a critical topic, not only for Louisville but for our state. (Video/Audio)
MOKP – The 2021 session has begun and Louisville has a new police chief – This week Jazmin and Robert talk about the first two days of the shorter 2021 legislative session, the firing of two officers involved in the Breonna Taylor killing, and the new LMPD chief. (Podcast)
🔥 American Fascism – It’s way past time to call Trumpism what it is: American fascism. (Commentary)
🔥 Cynical and seditious. Hal Rogers should lose his seat for his vote against democracy. – Hal Rogers is one tiny piece of this terrible movement that ended with a mob in the U.S. Capitol for the first time since 1814. But if we don’t stop it now, it will happen again all too soon. (Commentary)
Liberty and lawlessness cannot co-exist – It would be hypocritically inconsistent to promote policies which advance freedom and defend individual liberties without also condemning the threat to the rule of law posed by the mob which stormed the very heart of our republic. (Commentary)
Back to square one, America – Aaron Smith’s latest editorial cartoon speaks for itself. (Cartoon)
🔥 Raise a glass and propose a toast — to Georgia, and to McConnell’s new sobriquet – Let’s all say this together, just to see how it sounds: Senate MINORITY Leader Mitch McConnell. Go ahead – Savor it. Sip it slowly, like fine Kentucky Bourbon. (Commentary)
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