A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.
Playing With Fire
After a tense night in which a Russian attack on a nuclear power plant raised alarm bells around the world, the fire at the complex has been extinguished and experts say the plant seems stable. Both sides in the conflict now say that Russia had taken control of the Zaporizhzhia plant.
- Bloomberg: “What We Know About Ukraine’s Shelled Nuclear Plant”
- New York Times: “Russians Seize Europe’s Largest Nuclear Plant, but Fire Is Out”
- Washington Post: “U.N. nuclear watchdog says no radiation release after Russian projectile hit Ukrainian plant”
- BBC: “Global outcry after Russia seizes nuclear plant”
- CNN: “Ukraine’s president says Russia’s attack on a nuclear plant is “terror of an unprecedented level”
Florida GOPers Pass Mississippi-Style Abortion Ban
Florida’s Republican-controlled state legislature passed a bill on Thursday that would prohibit most abortions after 15 week of pregnancy, with no exceptions for rape or incest. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is expected to sign it into law.
Graham Calls For Putin Assassination
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) posted a tweet last night demanding the Russian leader’s assassination amid the Ukraine invasion because “[t]he only way this ends is for somebody in Russia to take this guy out.”
Sen. Luján’s Back!
After being away for a little over a month to recover from a stroke, Sen. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) returned to the Senate during a Commerce committee hearing on Thursday, where he got a standing ovation.
RNC Attacks Presidential Debate Organizer Again
Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel sent a letter to the Committee on Presidential Debates (CPD) telling the organization not to fundraise off potential GOP participation in the 2024 CPD-sponsored debates, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
- McDaniel also told the organization that she was sure that the RNC’s proposed resolution requiring its presidential candidates to pledge not to participate in CPD-sponsored debates would pass “overwhelmingly” when it gets put to a vote later this year.
- It’s an escalation of the RNC’s war on the CPD prompted by Trump’s whining that the debates were rigged against him. McDaniel is also mad that the CPD changed one of the 2020 debates to a virtual format, a decision the organization made because Trump had come down with COVID-19.
Chicago Mayor Allegedly Yelled About Having Biggest Dick In Chicago
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) is being sued for defamation after she chewed out a local municipal attorney during a Zoom call with other Chicago government lawyers last year, and the details of that call in the lawsuit are absolutely nuts.
- Lightfoot allegedly berated the attorney over a deal he’d made with an Italian-American group involving a Christopher Columbus statue that she had removed from a city park.
- This is what the mayor allegedly said during the call:
“You make some kind of secret agreement with Italians, what you are doing, you are out there measuring your dicks with the Italians seeing whose got the biggest dick, you are out there stroking your dicks over the Columbus statue, I am trying to keep Chicago Police officers from being shot and you are trying to get them shot. My dick is bigger than yours and the Italians, I have the biggest dick in Chicago.”
- To be clear, the lawyer’s lawsuit wasn’t based on the dick rant. It was about Lightfoot allegedly asking the plaintiff where he went to law school, if he even went to law school or if he even had a law license.
Idaho Dem Mayor Describes Being Under Constant Threat
In an op-ed for the Idaho Statesman on Thursday, Boise, Idaho Mayor Lauren McLean (D) laid out the impact of the recent surge of violent threats against her and her family.
“‘I Am Lia’: The Trans Swimmer Dividing America Tells Her Story” – Sports Illustrated
DeSantis Fundraises Off Yelling At High Schoolers For Wearing Masks
The Florida governor is putting out donation emails and a campaign ad touting the moment when he freaked out at high students at one of his press conferences for wearing masks, an incident DeSantis has decided to spin as him “allowing children to breathe fresh air.”
- DeSantis whines in one of the emails that “leftist propagandists in our media” are unfairly painting that moment as him bullying kids.
- Some of the kids and their parents have described that moment as bullying.
(Also, DeSantis’ ad includes clips from Family Guy in the year 2022.)
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