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Tipsheet

MSNBC Panel Accidentally Nukes Democrats' New Leader in the House

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

During a recent panel discussion on MSNBC, everyone's favorite liberal media figures Joy Reid and Symone Sanders were discussing the House's Select Committee on January 6th making criminal referrals to the DOJ when they decided to issue a call to expel members of Congress who allegedly sought "to disrupt the peaceful transition of power." What they failed to realize is that questioning election results is something of an old party trick for Democrats, including the soon-to-be House Minority Leader. 

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"It's quite concerning," Sanders said of Republicans being reelected to Congress in the midterms before attempting to take viewers on a field trip back to the 1860s for history lesson she seemed to think backed up her position.

"Post-Civil War, the folks who sided with the Confederate members of Congress, they were taken care of, they were expelled. In this Congress, there are multiple individuals that conspired — that were willing to move hell and high water —to disrupt the peaceful transition of power," Sanders explained of what was, by and large, just a desire to look into the results of an election held under unprecedented pandemic policies. Nor did lawmakers participate in the riot that materialized at the Capitol on January 6. 

Still, Sanders said her "fear, and frankly I think the fear of many Americans out there, is that nothing is going to happen to them." Well, if they'd broken the law they would have been charged with a crime. And if they'd breached the rules of their respective chambers, they would have been held accountable by ethics committees. And if they'd done something Sanders compared to the egregious act of supporting the Confederacy during the Civil War, voters surely would have ended their tenure. But none of that happened, of course. What Sanders is calling for is political persecution, not justice.  

Reid then took over and invoked the apparently fearsome specter that Wisconsin Republican Senator Ron Johnson won reelection to six more years serving in the upper chamber in which he can undertake "shenanigans," implying that he is one of the members of Congress that ought to be expelled. Again, the legal system, Senate Ethics Committee, and Wisconsin voters all evaluated the facts and deemed him to be faultless, but Reid rarely lets the facts get in the way of her spin. 

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Reid and Sanders are, of course, entitled to their opinions — no matter how few people see them on MSNBC — but they're not entitled to exist in some alternative reality in which Democrats have never doubted or sought to object to election results.

But let's imagine for a moment that they're correct. If, as Reid and Sanders argue, "folks" in Congress who question elections — as well as those who side with so-called "election deniers" — must be expelled, then the Democrats newly chosen leader in the House of Representatives better be packing his bags and cleaning out his office before he can even start as House Minority Leader. 

Yep, Democrat Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York, as luck would have it, is a significant denier of election legitimacy. Guy summarized Jeffries' habit of peddling misinformation and conspiracy theories here, but for now let's focus on his frequent comments denying the legitimacy of the 2016 election:

The next House Democratic leader is a 2016 election denier who openly argued that former President Donald Trump was an "illegitimate" president...Jeffries was one of many Democrats who questioned whether Trump legitimately won the 2016 election due to alleged Russian interference and collusion. He often made statements about Trump's 2016 victory that are similar to claims Trump made about the 2020 race being stolen..."The more we learn about 2016 the more ILLEGITIMATE it becomes," Jeffries tweeted from his congressional account in 2018. "America deserves to know whether we have a FAKE President in the Oval Office."  "History will never accept you as a legitimate president," Jeffries tweeted from his personal account about Trump in 2020. Jeffries also claimed Trump cheated in the 2016 election, alleging Trump may be "a Russian asset."

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Seems pretty clear that Jeffries is among those who objected to the transfer of power in 2016, which, according to the ladies of MSNBC, means he must be expelled from Congress like a confederate sympathizer in order to preserve "our democracy*," or something.

*The United States is, in fact, a republic.

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