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founding
Aug 17, 2020Liked by Eric Boehlert

Eric you did something important in this post that most of the media doesn’t bother to do — give the facts about the constitution which prove why Harris qualifies as a citizen instead of just saying that claim is false or is a lie. When the Republicans were claiming that Obama wasn’t born in the US they were spreading two lies. The first was that Obama was born in Africa but they they were also implying that a child has to have been born on US soil to qualify as a natural born US citizen. While the media did pushback on the claim that Obama wasn’t born in the US, I never saw any of them push back on the ridiculous idea that being born to a US citizen outside the US means a that child can’t be a citizen at birth, a “naturalized citizen”. The media should have also debunked that ridiculous idea and made it clear that if just one parent is a US citizen a child is a natural born citizen even if they are born on the moon. The only caveat is that parent must have lived for at least five years in the US. I have a grandchild who was born in Europe. His mother is not a US citizen yet our State Department immediately issued him a passport, something only a US citizen can get. It only required his birth certificate and proof that his father is a US citizen who had lived in the US for at least 5 years.

The media had an opportunity to correct the misleading impression the public was getting about Americans born abroad but they couldn’t be bothered. The fact that Republicans had no problem with the foreign born Ted Cruz running for president should have also gotten a lot more attention. The media should have given the public an explicit explanation of why Cruz is a natural born citizen even though only one of his parents is a US citizen and he was born in Canada.

A similar thing happened with the media coverage of Hillary’s email practices. Republicans were clearly implying that she jeopardized classified information by using her private email account instead of the State Department’s email server. The media never bothered to explain that State.gov is not a secure server and is never used for communicating classified information. SCIFs - Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilities- are used for those communications. Either reporters were having too much fun trashing Hillary or were too lazy to learn the basic facts of this issue. Chris Cillizza who obsessively wrote about the email “scandal” clearly didn’t understand this basic fact. When he was told that Colin Powell had used a separate system for communicating sensitive information, Cillizza insisted that meant Powell had used State.gov for his classified communications.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2017/10/17/clinton-lawyer-pounds-cnns-chris-cillizza-on-email-analysis-piece/

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In 2016 the press couldn’t stop talking about “her email” and Benghazi. It helped catapult Trump. Painful to remember.

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author

extremely painful...and they treated Trump like TV celebrity

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The good news is that this racist go-around didn’t get the traction it did with Obama. Nobody believes it or is amplifying it outside the beltway press. It’ll die the same death the Tara Reade story did. As far as I can tell, Republicans are still just throwing shit at the walls and hoping something sticks. I’ve never seen such an unorganized mess of a presidential campaign. The only thing they’ve done so far that seems even remotely organized and coordinated is the dismantling of the USPS, and they were so stupid and blatant about it, DeJoy is going to lose his job over it, if not do jail time. And people are already organizing ways around it. So, not only will it not be effective in helping Trump, but it will inspire an even bigger voter turnout for Democrats and those opposed to Trump. He just keeps turning people against him, and really is his own worst enemy.🙄

With that said, can I just say how excited I am that Kamala Harris is on the ticket? From the very beginning, she and Elizabeth Warren were my top two picks. I cannot wait to see her debate Pence.

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author

nobody in the press will apologize for debacle Hillary coverage....but there are signs they've learned lessons

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Agreed. Let’s hope it lasts.

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founding

I am not sure whether the media has really learned a lesson or if they are just so afraid of Trump getting reelected that they have stopped playing their games — temporarily. I hope I am wrong but having watched the media be manipulated by right wing spin going back to Nixon I am not getting my hopes up. I can just as easily imagine if Biden wins the nitpicking, echoing of right wing talking points, etc. will begin again. I also wouldn’t be surprised if they started normalizing the Republicans again. A lot of the media seems to believe that Trump is an aberration and that “principled” guys like Lindsay Graham have just been led astray by him.

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Well the press needs to be on their toes throughout the remainder of this campaign. The cheating in broad daylight, specifically the dismantling of the post office, needs to be reported relentlessly. One of our best weapons against the destruction of democracy and the rise of authoritarianism that Trump is fostering is the press, provided they continue to show the balls they've apparently grown when it comes to Birther II. The press hopefully has come to the conclusion that another four years of Trump is not in their best interest. I see their reaction of Birther II as a small sample. Time will tell if the media can be consistent with all of Trump's lies.

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author

it's going to be a fall campaign unlike any other, that's for sure

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Mr. Boehlert,

The thing that “impresses” me most about Birther II is that it’s the complete denial of the “anchor baby” argument we heard so much of.

If babies “anchor” their patents; then the babies must be citizens. If Senator Harris isn’t a “natural born citizen”; then she couldn’t have anchored anyone.

I know consistency is not the Republican’s long suit; but how do you argue Birther II & “anchor babies” both with a straight face?

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author

good point! logic doesn't really matter, does it?

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There IS a logic to it.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection

Putin gets it do you?

Ready for today's FUN FACT?

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Especially since Trump himself is an anchor baby, and so are all but one of his kids.

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https://www.timesofisrael.com/trump-dictated-his-own-glowing-health-report-doctor/

Today's PUTIN PLOT FOR WORLD DOMINATION FUN FACT:

February 3, 2017, three men turned up unannounced at Trump's personal doctor's office, and confiscated all his medical records. (The incident is mentioned in the above link to "The Times of Israel.") The three are described as longtime Trump bodyguard Keith Schiller, Trump Organization legal officer Alan Garten, and a third "large man" (Trump "Luca Brazzi"-type thug Matthew Calamari?). They appear to have been alerted to the existence of these records by the publication of a New York Times interview two days earlier.

Why did someone (Trump attorney Rudolph Giuliani, perhaps?) think it necessary to hide Trump's complete medical records from possible public exposure? Isn't that the file one might check to find a prior diagnosis of mental illness?

How did the mainstream media miss this story? (How does Mr. Boehlart appear to be missing it right now?)

I'll post the FB link again, where you can skip to the end of this story, if you want. It seems to me that the publicly reported facts add up to a disturbing plot to cause enough distraction and division to make an invasion the next simple step. See you here tomorrow, folks.

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Thanks Eric. Another excellent piece.

Setting aside the actual 2016 election for a moment, clearly all thinking citizens have learned in hindsight that trump's rise to national prominence, and eventually the party's nomination was fueled by birtherism. You know, racism.

There are now four years of hell in part caused by those who ignored that racism. Perhaps the media can learn from the past. I hope we can shorten the curve.

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author

i hope so, too. And i wish the press would finally just call Trump "racist."--not just his actions, like the Birther II claims

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