Trudy Rubin: Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny risks it all for democracy. Will GOP senators do the same?
Alexei Navalny, Russia’s leading fighter for democracy, returned home this week, after recuperating in Germany from a Kremlin attempt to murder him by poison as he campaigned in Siberia. It is almost impossible to comprehend the bravery it took for Navalny to take that risk. He faced a phalanx of Russian police at the airport, and a swift mock trial in a police station, after which he was jailed, at the total mercy of would-be Kremlin killers. Yet there is something painfully appropriate about Navalny taking that gamble the very same week Donald Trump leaves office. Trump will be recalled by h...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Trio of far-right ‘Oath Keepers’ militia members arrested for leading group that stormed US Capitol
Three members of a right-wing group, including an ex-Marine, were arrested Tuesday for storming the U.S. Capitol in full paramilitary gear as part of an organized insurrection following a Jan. 6 pro-Trump rally. Authorities identified Oath Keepers members Thomas Caldwell, a 65-year-old Virginia man, along with bartender Jessica Watkins, 38, of Ohio, and former serviceman Donovan Crowl as part of crew involved in the breach as Vice President Pence held a Congressional hearing where Republicans challenged President-elect Joe Biden’s victory over President Trump. “Us storming the castle,” read a ...
New York Daily News
'Powerhouse duo' of Washington Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell gain clout as Biden era begins
SEATTLE — With the swearing-in of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on Wednesday, the transition away from the Trump era may bring a Mount Rainier-level elevation of clout for Washington state. Democratic wins in the recent Georgia runoff elections flipped the U.S. Senate from Republican control to a 50-50 tie — with Harris serving as the tiebreaker. That lifts Washington Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell to powerful committee chair positions that will enable them to steer legislation and spending on everything from health care to schools to aviation and rail...
The Seattle Times
Naomi Ishisaka: White folks trashed the Capitol. Guess who cleaned it up?
The images speak for themselves. There was Korean American U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, on the floor of the Capitol rotunda after midnight, picking up the pro-Trump detritus and trash left behind by a mob set to overturn the results of a fair election. Earlier that day, Black U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, having evacuated the House chamber, sheltered with colleagues and feared a superspreader epilogue to the attack if other Congress members and staff did not put on masks. She went around the room trying to hand out masks and was not only refused, but laughed at in a now-viral video. A Black Capitol P...
The Seattle Times
Michigan Republicans seek to replace GOP canvasser who certified election
LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Republican Party wants to replace the GOP member of the Board of State Canvassers who cast the pivotal vote to certify election results in favor of Democratic President-elect Joe Biden. With party activists calling for certification to be blocked on Nov. 23, Aaron Van Langevelde, a policy adviser and deputy legal counsel for state House Republicans, joined the two Democrats on the four-member board to sign off on the results. His term ends on Jan. 31. Instead of renominating him for a four-year term, the Michigan Republican Party has proposed three well-known acti...
The Detroit News
Bill giving those with felonies the right to vote is introduced in Washington Legislature
SEATTLE â€” Washingtonians would be automatically eligible to vote after they are released from incarceration under a bill that was introduced in the state House last week. If passed, an estimated 10,000 people in Washington state would immediately regain their right to vote, the bill sponsors say. As the law currently stands, those convicted of felonies are not immediately eligible to vote when they are released back into their communities. However, they can regain voting rights on an individual basis, either provisionally or permanently. If people violate the terms of their parole or fail to...
The Seattle Times
After her life was risked, SC's Mace wants Trump held accountable for Capitol riot
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Nancy Mace voted against impeaching Donald Trump Wednesday, but the recently elected member of the U.S. House of Representatives still wants to hold the president accountable for his "words and actions" prior to the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol. During a Sunday morning appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," the Republican representing South Carolina's 1st District said she voted against impeachment because of the speed of the process. But Mace wants to punish Trump after he held a rally where he urged people to head to Capitol Hill. A violent mob of roughly 1,000 pro-Trump suppor...
The State (Columbia, S.C.)
The end of cash bail? Backers and opponents ponder the consequences as bill awaits Pritzker’s signature.
CHICAGO — You would think DuPage County Public Defender Jeff York would be happy to see the end of cash bail in Illinois, as promised by criminal justice legislation that passed Wednesday, and he is — for the most part. While clients of lesser means wouldn’t have to sit in jail until trial, he said, others who now receive affordable bails could see them taken away as nervous judges weigh the possibility that the accused could commit other crimes if released. “It really depends on how it ends up getting applied,” York said. “I don’t know what judges will do.” Such uncertainty is hanging over mu...
Georgia lawmakers seek absentee ID requirement after signature test
ATLANTA — Before Georgia’s runoffs, two Republican legislators tried to expose a gap in absentee ballot security by changing how they wrote their signatures on ballot application forms. Even with the altered signatures, they received absentee ballots. They say their experiment showed a flaw with absentee ballot verification: If election workers had thoroughly checked voter signatures, their ballot requests would have been rejected. While there’s no indication of widespread voter fraud, Republican lawmakers plan to introduce legislation that would eliminate signature matching when verifying abs...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Ossoff, Warnock likely to be sworn in before Senate impeachment trial
WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he is inclined to wait until after Joe Biden is inaugurated before he begins the second impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. By that time, the two senators from Georgia are likely to have been sworn in. Once the state certifies the results of the Jan. 5 election, Jon Ossoff and the Rev. Raphael Warnock can take the oath of office in Washington. That should happen around the same time as the Jan. 20 inauguration. Their election pushed the number of Democrats in the Senate to 50; with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris having a tie...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution