Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to the Buzzfeed story alleging President Trump instructed Michael Cohen to lie under oath to Congress. It’s potentially very serious but more questions need to be answered before Buzzfeed can be trusted to have the story right. They also scratch their heads as Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Marino announces his resignation just two weeks into the new Congress to take a job in the private sector. And they discuss the theatrics of Speaker Pelosi and President Trump as they try to one-up each other in the stalemate over a partial government shutdown.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are back with another full serving of crazy martinis. First, they question the motives and geometry skills of Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar, who publicly insists that Lindsay Graham is somehow “compromised” because he’s become more supportive of President Trump. They also dissect the bumbling scheme confessed by Michael Cohen, who says Trump directed him to pay thousands of dollars to rig online polls in 2014 and 2015. And that’s just the beginning of the story. Finally, Jim shares some lesser-known details and oddities from the career of former Vice President Joe Biden that he uncovered for his latest article.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America get a kick out of CNN commentator Areva Martin telling radio host David Webb his success is a result of white privilege – until Webb tells her he is black. They’re also aghast as 59 percent of registered voters support a 70 percent marginal tax rate on the nation’s highest earners, including 45 percent of Republicans. And they shake their heads as Beto O’Rourke openly wonders whether our “empire” can “still be managed by the same principles that were set down 230-plus years ago.”

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to House Republicans stripping Iowa Rep. Steve King of all committee assignments after his controversial comments in the New York Times. Jim also reveals some his interesting discoveries after combing through the record of California Sen. Kamala Harris as she prepares for a 2020 White House run. And they wonder why New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is bothering to run for president and planning to run as a champion of women in a Democratic primary full of them.

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Why Is It So Hard to Condemn Anti-Semitism?

 

Meghan McCain is the best thing to happen to daytime talk in memory. Case in point: this morning McCain put Tamika Mallory’s feet to the fire about her comfortable relationship with known anti-Semite Louis Farakkhan:

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud new Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for suspending Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel and naming two stellar judges to the Florida Supreme Court. They also discuss Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard joining the 2020 presidential race and how her defense of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad could impact the campaign. And as many breathlessly await the Mueller report on Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign, ABC’s Jonathan Karl reports that the report will likely be anti-climactic.

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Do They Want Him to Be President Forever?

 

I’m starting to think so. Here’s a few Monday morning examples:

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see Republican leaders denounce the latest controversial comments from Iowa Rep. Steve King and argue that while it’s worth defending the greatness of Western Civilization, there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it. While being perfectly fine with a wall at various points along our southern border, they offer multiple reasons why an emergency declaration to move it forward would be a bad idea now and an even worse precedent for when a Democrat eventually becomes president. And they get a kick out of CNN’s Jim Acosta intending to make an argument against the need for a border wall but accidentally demonstrating why a wall works. And Jim explains how Acosta has become the Hollywood caricature of an arrogant reporter.

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While Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has come under deserved fire for defending Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are applauding Gabbard today for being the only Democrat willing to stand up to Senate Democrats who contend that being a member of the Knights of Columbus is disqualifying for service as a federal judge. They also brace for the imminent presidential campaign of California Sen. Kamala Harris, who is very liberal but is one of only a few Democrats with a legitimate shot at the nomination. And, as more stories emerge of the fiscal hardship of federal employees going without pay during the partial shutdown, they are staggered by statistics showing that nearly 80 percent of Americans live paycheck to paycheck and over 60 percent don’t have enough money saved to cover six months of expenses.

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TV News Is Theater

 

We can refer to it as “fake news”, we can speak of a “narrative” that pervades news cycles, or use the now quaint word, bias to describe these programs, but the big picture is they are putting on plays for our entertainment or diversion.

A play has characters, a plot and a theme. Characters are protagonists and antagonists, depicting human qualities we admire, aspire to or repel us and evoke disgust.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America think President Trump did alright in his speech and agree that his presentation was better than the stiff stares of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. They also shake their heads in wonder as more Democrats embrace huge tax increases and government-run health care and Jim breaks down the truly radical ideas contained in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal. And speaking of the new congresswoman, Jim unleashes a fantastic rant after Ocasio-Cortez suggests on national television that the people trying to enter the U.S. illegally are more American than people who want a border wall.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see President Trump making a detailed case for border wall funding in tonight’s televised address, a more effective strategy than tweets and sound bites. They also like National Security Adviser John Bolton’s clarification that the Trump administration does want to get our troops out of Syria but we also have no intention of letting ISIS grow again or letting Turkey slaughter the Kurds. They slam the door behind failed Virginia GOP Senate and gubernatorial candidate Corey Stewart, who says he will not run for re-election to his local office and is getting out of politics. And Jim is in rare form as he and Greg discuss the fact that every year is an election year in Virginia.

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Sorry But He’s Still the POTUS

 

There’s a bizarre new push from some in the media to stop carrying the President when he talks. His rallies I could do without, but in advance of his address to the nation tomorrow night about the shutdown and the state of the southern border, media watchers and commentators have been pressuring the networks not to carry the address.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are grateful to see House Democrats revealing their real goals right from the start – impeachment, huge tax increases, abolishing the electoral college – and hope Americans see what they’d be getting if Democrats also controlled the Senate and the White House. As the partial government shutdown creeps towards three weeks, some conservatives are concluding that because their lives haven’t changed much, the impacted agencies aren’t really needed. Jim explains why that conclusion is badly misguided. And they throw up their hands as the mainstream media concoct the narrative that Republicans condemned Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for dancing in a video, when only one anonymous Twitter user lashed out and any conservative who weighed in on the matter defended the congresswoman.

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When the Mob Comes for a Special Needs Individual

 

The Daily Caller has a heartbreaking and eye-opening piece I wanted to flag for Ricochet members and readers. Hannah Grossman describes the real story behind one of those race videos you may have seen around.

On a midsummer day in July, Darsell Obregon ducked under an apartment building to shelter herself from the rain while waiting for an Uber. Minutes later, the front door swung open and out walked a 19-year-old girl who demanded that Obregon leave the premises immediately. The resident’s name is Arabelle Torres, a 19-year-old student at Brooklyn College who also has autism.

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After noting the start of a new Congress with Democrats running the House, Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley for realizing he had no chance of winning the 2020 Democratic nomination and deciding not to run. They also note O’Malley is urging Beto O’Rourke to run for president, saying it’s time for a new generation of leadership. Jim and Greg also shudder as President Trump not only thinks that the Soviet Union collapsed because of its failed efforts in Afghanistan but thinks the Soviets were right to invade in the first place. And they practice their shocked faces as Democrats start pursuing the impeachment of President Trump on the first day of the new Congress.

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Happy New Year! Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are back and ready to tackle 2019. Today, they blast incoming Utah Sen. Mitt Romney for heading to the Washington Post and CNN to discuss his concerns about President Trump on the eve of being sworn in, although they share many of his concerns. They also sigh as Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren launches her presidential exploratory committee by whipping up accusations of class warfare. And they discuss the strategy of Washington Gov. Jay Inslee to run for president on the single issue of climate change.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America conclude the Three Martini Lunch Award season by announcing their choices for person of the year and turncoat of the year. They also make their fearless predictions for 2019.

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Russian Collusion?

 

So … “journalist” Jamal Khashoggi, who got whacked by the Saudis, is revealed to have had a relationship with the Qatari government than seems to have gone beyond showing up at the Embassy’s lamb-kabob blowouts. From the Washington Post:

Text messages between Khashoggi and an executive at Qatar Foundation International show that the executive, Maggie Mitchell Salem, at times shaped the columns he submitted to the Washington Post, proposing topics, drafting material and prodding him to take a harder line against the Saudi government. Khashoggi also appears to have relied on a researcher and translator affiliated with the organization, which promotes Arabic-language education in the United States.

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Prayers Needed for Bre Payton

 

I am on my phone, so I cannot offer a link, but conservative Federalist journalist Bre Payton may be near death at the age of 26. She was tweeting on Dec. 26, but a friend found her unresponsive and barely breathing on Dec 27. At the hospital they determined she had the H1N1 flu, and […]

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