The Forward Five – Wednesday, 1/13/21

Five Things to Know Today

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— Publisher’s Note —

Good morning! The second impeachment of President Trump continues to move forward at a rapid pace (not fast enough for me, though). The House is expected to vote to impeach later today. Whether they will send the impeachment on to the Senate, or hold it for some time, remains to be seen.

Last night, news broke that McConnell supports impeachment, and could even vote Yes whenever it comes to the Senate. Better late than never, perhaps.

In Frankfort, budget bills that simply continue the current budget have passed, and now move into a conference committee to draft the real budget. How much of Beshear’s budget they will keep is uncertain.

And finally, since the budget bill movement was expected, the big news is the petition to impeach Beshear. Speaker Osborne announced the seven-member special committee that will hear the petition, with Jason Nemes as chair. Rather than just dismissing the petition outright, as it deserves, Nemes plans on holding hearings and letting the petitioners state their case.

I can’t say more, but there may be other news on the state impeachment front later today. Check the site to see; if it happens, I’ll probably use the over-used BREAKING in the headline.

And finally, stay safe. Not just from the virus, but also from dangerous people. There are supposed to be armed rallies in every state capitol over the weekend. With everyone on edge, it only takes one person to turn a protest into a murder scene. As they used to say on Hill Street Blues (yes, I’m dating myself): “Be careful out there.”

See you tomorrow morning.

Bruce Maples, publisher
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Today’s Five Things to Know

1/12 update — 7-day average of new cases goes above 4,000 for the first time in Kentucky

Gov. Beshear took hope in a two-day drop in the positivity rate, saying perhaps people had already reverted to safer behaviors after the holidays. He also discussed the impeachment petition, calling out the petitioners. (Forward Kentucky)

Massive security put in place in DC to counter rumored insurrectionist attacks

In response to rumored attacks on not only the inauguration, but various sites across Washington, a massive security mobilization has already begun that includes as many as 15,000 National Guard troops. The rumored attacks include encircling the White House, Capitol, and Supreme Court building, then arresting any Democrat who tries to enter, including President-Elect Joe Biden. (Forward Kentucky)

Kentucky governor calls out signers of impeachment petition

Kentucky’s governor on Tuesday linked signers of a petition seeking his ouster to a rally where he was hanged in effigy and to a video declaring God would strike him down for his COVID-19 restrictions on churches.

Ratcheting up his response, Gov. Andy Beshear called out two petition signers a day after the GOP-led House formed a committee to review the petition. The petition calls for Beshear’s impeachment for lockdown orders meant to combat the pandemic. It was submitted by just four Kentuckians.

“These people who signed this petition have tried to create terror for me and my family before,” the Democratic governor said at a news conference. “And when that hasn’t worked, I guess they’re trying something new. (Herald-Leader)

Kentucky political leaders form group to evaluate Capitol security after FBI warning

Kentucky’s political leaders are forming a group to evaluate the Kentucky Capitol’s security less than a week after a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol while Congress was certifying the 2020 Presidential election results.

The decision to evaluate the Capitol’s safety comes after the FBI issued a warning that armed protests are being planned at all 50 state Capitols between January 16 and January 20 and that some of the people are members of extremist groups, according to the Associated Press.

There is a protest scheduled at Kentucky’s Capitol on January 17, according to Beshear. The number 17 has significance among those who believe in the QAnon conspiracy theory, because Q is the 17th letter of the alphabet. (Herald-Leader)

DC news summary

Events continue to move fast in Washington. Here’s a bullet list of the latest:

  • On Tuesday, the House passed a resolution asking VP Pence and the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office.
  • Pence later released a letter saying he would not do that.
  • The House is scheduled to vote today (Wednesday) to impeach Trump on one article: incitement of insurrection. A number of Republicans have said they will join the Democrats in voting Yes, including the #3 Republican in the House, Liz Cheney (daughter of former VP Dick Cheney).
  • Senator Mitch McConnell told associates that he believes Trump committed impeachable offenses, and McConnell is pleased that Democrats are moving to impeach him.
  • McConnell has said that the Senate cannot reconvene to take up the impeachment trial until after Biden’s inauguration at the earliest. However, Chuck Schumer, the leading Dem in the Senate, has spoken to McConnell about using a provision in the Senate rules that allow the leading Republican and the leading Democrat to decide together to reconvene, overriding the schedule and other rules.
  • New rules have been put in place in the House: All members must wear masks on the floor and elsewhere, and everyone must go through a metal detector upon entering the building. (Elected representatives were previously exempt from having to be scanned.) Anyone not wearing a mask will be fined $500 for their first offence, and $2,500 for subsequent offenses, with the fines coming out of their paycheck and not payable by campaign funds or other means.
  • A number of Republican representatives were incensed with having to go through the metal detectors, and some refused to do so. Those complaining were told by other representatives to “stop whining.” They were also dragged on social media.

Recent Content on Forward Kentucky

[new] indicates item not in a Forward Five before
🔥 indicates high # of reads, social media shares, or both

[New] Budget bills continue to advance, moving to conference committee – Budget bills continue to advance in KYGA21, winning Senate committee approval on Tuesday. They should be approved today in the Senate, and head to a conference committee where the real work will begin. (News)

[New] 🔥 14th Amendment also applies to state electeds. Do any KY legislators fit the requirements? – There’s a lot of buzz about using the 14th Amendment against both the insurrectionists and the persons who incited the attack. But did you know the 14th also applies to STATE legislators? (Commentary)

[New] Goddard to the ‘law and order’ party: When will you denounce lawlessness? – Otherwise mild-mannered Graves County substitute teacher Charlotte Goddard has tossed down the gauntlet to Republican lawmakers in Frankfort. (Commentary)

House moves four state budget bills to Senate – The Kentucky House passed four of the five state budget bills on Monday, along with a measure to reorganize the General Assembly’s Program Review and Investigations Committee. (News)

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)

🔥 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)

🔥 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)

🔥 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)

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)

🔥 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)

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)

Back to square one, America – Aaron Smith’s latest editorial cartoon speaks for itself. (Cartoon)

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Forward Kentucky is an independent media organization focused on progressive news and issues in Kentucky. Our objectives are to provide journalism that is objective, policies that are effective, and commentary that is progressive. Our goal is to help Kentucky become all that it can be through government that works, for all. We are "the progressive voice for Kentucky politics."

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