Saturday Report 9/2/23 - Who Will Fall For the "No-Labels" Trap?
The Best of the Rest of the News
— Will New Hampshire be the first state to ban Trump from the ballot? As the national consensus of Trump as a lifelong grifter and criminal grows, Republicans serious about their electoral futures are backing away. The most recent sign comes from New Hampshire, where, Politico reports, that state’s Attorney General’s office announced this week that they are “carefully reviewing the legal issues involved” with keeping Trump off the ballot via Section 3 of the 14th Amendment. While they haven’t taken a position on the issue, leaders of New Hampshire’s government haven’t ruled it out, either. New Hampshire Attorney General John Formella and Secretary of State David Scanlan issued a public joint statement saying, “Both the Secretary of State’s Office and the Attorney General’s Office are aware of public discourse regarding the potential applicability of Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution to the upcoming presidential election cycle.” While the chair of New Hampshire’s GOP dismissed the idea, one of the state’s more prominent and well-known Republicans, Bryant “Corky” Messner (who ran with Trump’s endorsement for the US Senate), has “publicly questioned Trump’s eligibility to run for president,” according to Politico’s reporting. In New Jersey, RNC member Bill Palatucci told The New York Times that state Republican parties need to come up with a plan B in the event Trump goes down in flames as a result of his legal peril. “Given what’s happening on the legal front, state parties need to think about what options they’re giving themselves,” said Palatucci. “All this is happening so quickly, it’s unprecedented, and so as states formulate what their rules are going to be. Everybody’s got a whole new set of circumstances to consider.” Trump’s refusal to pay the legal bills of the people who participated in his conspiracy to overturn the election isn’t helping him any, either: the odds of some or even most of the 18 other Georgia defendants flipping on him grows by the day.
— Alabama’s Attorney General says he can level “criminal conspiracy” charges against anybody who helps a woman leave his state to obtain an abortion. Jessica Valenti has been on this story from day one over at her must-read Abortion Every Day Substack newsletter. As she notes, even telling a woman where she can obtain an abortion out-of-state is, according to Alabama AG Steve Marshall, a crime. As Marshall has said: “One cannot seriously doubt that the State can prevent a mobster from asking a hitman to kill a rival because the agreement occurred through spoken word. So too here for conspiracies to obtain an elective abortion.” Valenti documents how this is a growing trend in Red states across the nation: a Texas town recently also outlawed leaving town to get an abortion, and Idaho’s Republican-controlled legislature recently passed a law making it a crime to “traffic” women out-of-state for abortion care. As The Washington Post reports: “Antiabortion advocates … are targeting regions along interstates and in areas with airports, with the goal of blocking off the main arteries out of Texas and keeping pregnant women hemmed within the confines of their antiabortion state.” What’s next on the GOP hit parade? Criminalizing birth control.