Tag Archives: 2020 election

George P. might run for AG? Yes!

(AP Photo/LM Otero)

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush says the state’s attorney general must be “approve reproach.”

So … with that the nephew and grandson of two presidents has declared for all the world that he is giving serious thought to running to become the state’s next top legal eagle.

I cannot attest to the kind of lawyer George P. Bush has been over the years. However, I believe I can speak to the seriously damaged reputation of the current AG, Ken Paxton, who is facing a pending criminal trial in state court on allegations of securities fraud and is under investigation by the FBI over a whistleblower complaint brought by several of his former top legal assistants.

Bush is the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the grandson of the late President George H.W. Bush and nephew of former President George W. Bush.

I saw P. once in person at the 1992 GOP presidential nominating convention in Houston when, as a teenager, he brought the house down with his exhortation of “viva Boosh!” while speaking on behalf of his “Gampy,” the 41st president of the United States. It was Bush 41, you’ll recall, who famously referred to Jeb’s children as “the little brown ones,” given that their mother, Columba, is of Mexican descent.

George P. Bush says he may primary Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton | The Texas Tribune

Paxton needs to quit. I’ve said so already on this blog. The securities fraud allegation — resulting in a Collin County grand jury indictment — is bad enough. Then came the resignations and firing of several key Paxton legal assistants who blew the whistle on their boss, alleging that he is partaking in illegal activities while serving as AG; one of the allegations involves bribery, for God’s sake!

I have been frustrated beyond belief that Texans actually saw fit to re-elect Paxton, who was indicted for securities fraud in his first term as AG. Then, perhaps emboldened by his re-election in 2018, Paxton decides to sue several states where voters cast most of their ballots for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election. The Supreme Court tossed Paxton’s lawsuit aside, saying the Texas AG didn’t have jurisdiction in telling another state how to conduct its election.

Put another way, the highest court in the land told Paxton to butt the hell out!

I am, therefore, going to applaud the notion that George P. Bush wants to challenge Paxton in the 2022 Republican Party primary for Texas attorney general. I have had enough of Paxton’s dirtiness in an office that demands its occupant be above reproach.

Vote ‘reform’ based on the Big Lie

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

State legislators and governors keep yapping about “protecting the electoral process” by enacting rules that make it more difficult for millions of Americans to actually vote.

All of which makes me wonder: Against what are these officials seeking to protect us? 

I think I know. They are protecting us against a bogus affliction of voter fraud promulgated by the Big Lie that took root when Donald Trump was in the process of losing his bid for re-election as president of the United States.

You’ll recall when Trump alleged that were he to lose his re-election bid it would be the result of “widespread fraud.” That illegal voters would be able to cast ballots. That they would vote for Joe Biden.

Evidence in state after state has concluded that the voter fraud Trump said existed doesn’t exist. Has there been a scant ballot cast illegally? Sure. Is it as widespread and corrosive to the system as Republicans, led by Trump, Not by a long shot.

Indeed, the man Donald Trump hired to protect the nation’s electoral system, Christopher Krebs, declared the 2020 election to be the “safest, most secure” election in U.S. history. What did he get for doing his job? Donald Trump fired him!

Texas has joined the vote fraud amen chorus by approving voter suppression laws. Major League Baseball responded to Georgia’s restrictions by pulling its all-star game from Atlanta. This debate, as you would expect, has fallen along partisan lines: Republicans make the bogus case of vote fraud; Democrats debunk those claims and allege that the GOP is seeking to hold onto the power it has in many states by any means necessary.

I keep circling back, though, to the cause of all this tempest. It is the Big Lie, which culminated on Jan. 6 when the riotous mob of terrorists mounted an insurrection against the federal government just as it was certifying Joe Biden’s election as president.

The Big Lie continues to fester in the minds of those in state capitols who enact laws that have little to do with vote fraud but seemingly everything to do with making it more difficult for Americans to vote.

We are witnessing a disgraceful assault on a cherished right of citizenship.

Why the disinterest?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

An earlier post on this blog saluted the “courtesy” that Princeton City Hall gave to its residents with a significant credit in their monthly water bill.

I intended to call attention to local governments’ ability to respond to taxpayers’ needs in time of suffering. Princeton answered the call.

Now, for my point: It is that government at the local level often is the most responsive and its actions have the most direct impact on citizens’ lives. Thus, it baffles me that local government elections usually draw such little attention among voters.

Local government responds | High Plains Blogger

You know what I’m talking about. Voter turnout for municipal elections often languishes in the single digits. That is, fewer than 10 percent of those who are registered to vote bother to actually vote. I have witnessed this astonishing apathy play out over and over again during by 37 years as a daily print journalist. I watched it happen in Oregon City, Ore., in Beaumont, Texas, and in Amarillo, Texas, where I worked before retiring and moving to Princeton. It’s happened here, too.

Texas is going to the polls again on May 1. We will choose our city government and school district elected leaders. Will many of us even bother to vote? Hah! I am not holding my breath.

And that is the ongoing shame of our democratic process.

The 2020 presidential election produced an astonishing turnout among registered voters, something on the order of 65 percent. The raw numbers of voters, more than 158 million, also was staggering. Don’t misunderstand me. Presidential elections are important as well. However, presidents and those we send to Congress make decisions that occasionally have little to do with our daily lives.

City council members decide how much property taxes we pay; they make decisions on the quality of police and fire protection, on our parks, whether we have streets lights in our neighborhoods and, yes, whether we have potable running water. School board trustees decide how much to pay public school teachers, which has a direct impact on our property taxes, the books our children and grandchildren read, the curriculum they study.

I am not suggesting we should treat national elections with the apathy we demonstrate at the local level. I am suggesting that local races deserve at least as much of our attention as those elections farther up the electoral pecking order.

Trump lost the election; Big Lie insists otherwise

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Donald John Trump lost the 2020 presidential election.

It has been proven, certified, codified, cast in proverbial cement. Game over. Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. is the president of the United States of America after being selected in a free and fair election by a solid majority of American voters.

But … the Big Lie still has plenty of life.

The Big Lie is the one promulgated by Trump, which he did once again this week in a Fox News interview. He keeps saying he won the election. He didn’t! He lost it! Bigly!

What continues to astonish me is that he has actual practicing lawyers who insist he won. One of them, Sidney Powell, is saying openly that voting machines were tampered with and made to calculate ballots in a way that would push President Biden into the White House.

Powell and other liars now face a lawsuit in the billions of bucks by the manufacturer of the voting machines. She also needs to be disbarred and prohibited from ever practicing law.

However, the Big Lie lives on. It won’t die. It must die. Maybe it will when its sources no longer are around to spread the lie.

The absolute worst element of the Big Lie is that so damn many Americans are willing to believe it. These Americans — the big liars — have disgraced the country they profess to love.

C’mon back, Donald!

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Donald John Trump’s expected return to Republican Party political involvement just might be a good tonic for the nation, if not the GOP.

Why? Because the ex-president will be able to expose himself even more to the kind of self-centered narcissism that became one of the hallmarks of his time as president.

Trump reportedly is planning to get more involved in GOP primary activities, siding with candidates who oppose incumbents who weren’t sufficiently loyal to him.

As The Hill reports, though, many mainstream Republicans are none too happy to see The Donald step back into the arena after being beaten soundly by President Biden. They blame Trump for Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats flipping from Republican to Democrat in the January runoff election. They are angry that Trump keeps repeating The Big Lie about the 2020 election being stolen from him.

Trump ramps up activities, asserts power within GOP | TheHill

As an ardent critic of Donald Trump, I am going to stop worrying about whether he plans to launch a return to political life. I see many hideous storm clouds on the horizon awaiting Trump. Prosecutors in New York and Georgia are looking for potential criminal culpability involving Trump. His once-fabled business “empire” is looking shakier all the time. Trump is facing hundreds of millions of dollars in debt that are coming due. All of that will become fodder for whoever wants to challenge The Donald.

To be sure, my sincerest hope of all is for Trump to vanish. I want him gone. His 15 minutes of political fame are up. He had his time on center stage … and blew it all apart.

I will watch with somewhat muted interest in this individual’s attempt at trying to cling to the power he possesses over a political party he grabbed by the throat and turned it into a cult of personality.

What happened to 11th Commandment?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Ronald W. Reagan would be an angry man today.

President Reagan once coined a phrase that became known as the 11th Commandment, which stated that “Thou shalt not speak ill of other Republicans.” The Republican Party of President Reagan’s era wasn’t always faithful to that “commandment.”

Today it is so far removed from that dictum that the party bears virtually no resemblance to the conservative political organization that Reagan helped reconstruct in the 1980s.

Instead, the nation is watching a party being retooled yet again by the latest GOP president, who is launching a nationwide campaign against any Republican who dared stand against him while he committed high crimes and misdemeanors against the U.S. of A.

Donald Trump is now targeting, for example, the Republican secretary of state of Georgia, Brad Raffensperger, who had the temerity to resist the Big Lie that Trump keeps telling that the Georgia presidential election was “stolen” from Trump and given to President Biden. The ex-president is backing a GOP primary opponent against Raffensperger, whose only “sin” was to, um, follow the damn law!

Trump looks to take down Raffensperger in Georgia – POLITICO

Trump has taking aim as well across the nation, seeking to destroy GOP politicians who just couldn’t bring themselves to practice blind fealty to the disgraced former president.

If only President Reagan were around today to take the former Numbskull in Chief to the proverbial “woodshed.”

Irony is so very rich

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

When I watch Christopher Krebs recount the immense security measures implemented to protect the 2020 presidential election against chicanery by foreign actors, I cannot let go of the incredible irony that Krebs presents.

Donald Trump hired Krebs specifically to protect the U.S. election system against foreign interference. Krebs did his job brilliantly. The 2020 election, he said, was the “most secure election” in U.S. history.

Then we heard Trump, who lost the election, make bogus claims that it was “stolen” from him and handed to Joseph Biden. What does he do then? He fires Krebs who did precisely what Trump had hired him to do!

Now we hear from the U.S. intelligence community that has just issued a final report declaring that Krebs was right, that the election was safe, it was secure and that there was no foreign tampering.

The intel report drives the nail into the proverbial coffin containing the Big Lie that Donald Trump continues to preach.

Amazing.

It’s no ‘waste of time’

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

A fellow who once served on the Amarillo City Council believes the investigation into Rep. Ronny Jackson’s past as White House physician is a “waste of time.”

We need to “quit looking back and move forward,” said Randy Burkett in a brief Facebook post.

I beg to differ. We gotta look back, if only to find out the truth behind a scathing report issued by a non-partisan watchdog outfit.

The Pentagon inspector general has issued a report that alleges that Jackson, who was elected to the 13th Congressional District of Texas, engaged in bad behavior while serving as White House physician. He drank on the job, he overprescribed medication and bullied and sexually harassed employees, the IG report said.

There needs to be a thorough investigation of what Jackson (allegedly) did and whether he should be removed from the House of Representatives.

As for “moving forward,” perhaps Randy Burkett would like to explain why Republicans haven’t yet been able to move forward from investigating matters involving, oh, Hillary Rodham Clinton or the 2020 presidential election’s phony allegations of vote fraud.

It is no “waste of time” to ensure that the people elected to the legislative branch of government, the folks who make laws we all must obey are trustworthy and are of high moral standing.

That kind of investigation is especially relevant when it involves someone such as Rep./Dr. Jackson, who keeps popping off about his political foes, suggesting — among many other things — that President Biden was elected this past year on the basis of electoral theft.

Waste of time? We should move on? Get real. Let’s find out what happened when Ronny Jackson was working as the Doctor in Our House.

Die, Big Lie … just die!

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Some lies take on lives of their own.

The Big Lie from the 2020 presidential election is one of them. It won’t die. It can’t die. It lives in what passes for the hearts and minds of millions of Americans who are willing to swill the poisonous notion that Donald Trump actually won that election despite the numbers that tell us he lost it … bigly!

President Joe Biden beat Trump soundly. Trump, though, keeps feeding the Big Lie to those who are willing to swallow it. He did it again at the Conservative Political Action Conference this past weekend.

Trump repeats false claim he won 2020 election, teases potential future White House bid during CP… – YouTube

He recited the Big Lie. The faithful cheered him on. He kept it up. They cheered some more.

The Big Lie lives on for as long as there are people among us who believe it.

Big Lie just won’t die!

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

We can thank social media for continuing to breathe life into the Big Lie.

Yes, it is social media’s fault that the Big Lie has more lives than any thousand cats you can find. The Big Lie is being pitched by fruitcakes, traitors, seditionists and, yes, even a former U.S. president.

The Big Lie draws deep breaths on social media outlets that continue to give Big Lie purveyors a platform from which they spout their treasonous nonsense.

It is that the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump … the aforementioned ex-president. The Big Lie continues to insist that all 50 states and the District of Columbia, where public servants all certified the results of the election as accurate and secure, cannot be trusted.

Wow! My head is spinning. I am trying to catch my breath, trying to keep my balance as I listen to The Big Lie being repeated not just on social media but also on right-wing TV and radio media outlets that give them an audience to soak up the lie they keep hearing.

Social media have been — at the very least — a mixed blessing. It does plenty of good. It connects people. It allows folks to make new friends and keeps old friendships alive and well. It also serves as a conduit for lies big and small.

It’s The Big Lie that needs to die a quick death. If only social media would pull the plug.