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Tuesday, Oct 04th

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Congress tees up bills to protect travel for abortion

Congress tees up bills to protect abortion travelers

Bills aimed at protecting a person’s ability to cross state lines to seek reproductive care could see action in the House and Senate later this week — though neither bill has a clear path to becoming law, especially in the Senate.

The House plans to bring its bill to the floor on Friday; Senate Democratic leadership could attempt to call the bill up for a voice vote on the Senate floor later this week, though Republicans are expected to block it.

What the bills would do: Both bills aim to preempt states that may try to stop residents from obtaining an abortion in other states. They would protect abortion providers, abortion seekers and people providing transportation services from punishment by states. The House bill also clarifies that constitutional protections for interstate commerce trump state laws when it comes to abortion pills.

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Jan. 6 committee notifies DOJ that Trump tried tampering with one of its witnesses, Cheney says

Liz Cheney

The House select committee investigating the attack on the Capitol on Jan. 6 revealed that it told the Department of Justice that former President Donald Trump contacted one of its witnesses who hasn’t publicly testified yet.

“After our last hearing. President Trump tried to call a witness in our investigation. A witness you have not yet seen in these hearings,” Rep. Liz Cheney, the vice chair of the committee, said on Tuesday.

“That person declined to answer or respond to President Trump’s call and instead alerted their lawyer to the call. Their lawyer alerted us. And this committee has supplied that information to the Department of Justice,” she added.

A spokesperson for Trump did not respond to requests for comment.

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Schumer tests positive for COVID as Senate set to reconvene

Chuck Schumer tests positive for Covid

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has tested positive for COVID-19 as the Senate prepares to reconvene this week after a two-week recess.

In a statement on Saturday, Schumer’s spokesperson Justin Goodman said the senator is experiencing mild symptoms and is fully vaccinated and boosted against the virus.

“Consistent with the CDC guidance, Leader Schumer will quarantine this week and work remotely,” Goodman said in a statement. “Anyone who knows Leader Schumer knows that even if he’s not physically in the Capitol, through virtual meetings and his trademark flip phone he will continue with his robust schedule and remain in near constant contact with his colleagues.”

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Former Oath Keepers Spokesman Set to Testify at January 6 Hearing

OathKeepers militiaA former spokesman for the Oath Keepers militia group is set to testify Tuesday at a January 6 committee hearing on the role that the organization and other extremists played in efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

Jason Van Tatenhove, a Colorado resident and former tattoo shop owner, is scheduled to appear to detail his work as a national media director for the Oath Keepers in 2015 and 2016 and what he says was the group’s radicalization during that period. Van Tatenhove, who now works as an independent journalist, was apparently close to Stewart Rhodes, the groups’ founder.

Van Tatenhove disclosed his plans to testify at a live hearing this month on his Substack and to a Colorado news outlet. A person familiar with the committee’s plans confirmed that Van Tatenhove is one of multiple former extremist group insiders slated to testify Tuesday, July 17. Van Tatenhove declined to comment to Mother Jones.

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Jan. 6 Committee Secures Interview With Trump White House Counsel Pat Cipollone

Cipollone agrees to interviewThe Trump White House’s top lawyer, Pat Cipollone, is set to appear before the House Jan. 6 committee on Friday, which would make him the highest-ranking official from the West Wing to provide testimony to the panel.

Cipollone did not immediately respond to a request for comment on multiple media reports that he has agreed to testify behind closed doors after having previously spoken to the committee informally.

Cipollone, according to former Trump administration officials, was among the most forceful voices telling Trump on Jan. 6 that his actions that day could expose him to criminal prosecution.

According to testimony already made public by the committee, Cipollone became the bulwark against Trump’s attempts to overturn his election loss through various means, including trying to pressure the Department of Justice to send a letter falsely claiming there had been significant election fraud to states that Joe Biden had narrowly won or invoking the Insurrection Act to declare a form of martial law and seize voting machines.

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Rudy Giuliani, Lindsey Graham Subpoenaed In Trump Election Probe

Guiliani and Graham subpoenaedThe Georgia prosecutor investigating the conduct of former President Donald Trump and his allies after the 2020 election is trying to compel U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and others to testify before a special grand jury.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis on Tuesday filed petitions with the judge overseeing the special grand jury. Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney signed a “certificate of material witness” for Graham, Giuliani and others saying that they have been deemed necessary to the investigation.

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Adam Kinzinger Shares Unhinged Voicemails From Trump Supporters Threatening His Family

Adam Kinzinger

No good deed goes unpunished, and Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) is learning that the hard way.

The Republican congressman is serving on the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and is getting all sorts of abuse from insurrection supporters ― including threats to his family.

On Tuesday, Kinzinger posted a sample of the messages his office has received from people who are angry that he’s not buying into former President Donald Trump’s baseless election fraud lies.

“Threats of violence over politics [have] increased heavily in the last few years. But the darkness has reached new lows,” Kinzinger tweeted. “My new interns made this compilation of recent calls they’ve received while serving in my DC office.”

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