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Barrasso: AOC is de Facto Speaker of the House; Pelosi Terrified of Her

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While U.S. Sen. John Barrasso has been making the rounds on television discussing the Supreme Court vacancy, he’s also been discussing the upcoming election and how perilous it could be for the country if the Democrats take control of the Senate and the White House.

The Wyoming Republican told FOX News host Shannon Bream that the far left wing of the Democratic party is actually in control of the party and submitted as evidence the fact that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer actually allowed someone else to appear on camera with him.

“Anyone who has followed Chuck Schumer for a long time knows he doesn’t like to share the camera or the microphone with anyone,” Barrasso said.

And this anyone isn’t just anyone. Schumer’s press conference pal was Democrat U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC).

“She is the de facto speaker of the House because Nancy Pelosi is terrified of her and Chuck Schumer is worried about a primary from her in two years in New York,” Barrasso said.

“She is running the Democratic Party and she wants to run it further and further to the left and that’s a big problem for the country, Shannon,” he said.

Barrasso said the Democrats have a plan in place to expand the number of seats on the Supreme Court and expand the number of members in the U.S. Senate (presumably Democrats) by allowing the District of Columbia to become a state.

“That’s what’s at stake in the election,” Barrasso said. “The Democrats have a full-time war room and they’ve been campaigning on this promise for some time.”

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Barrasso: Republicans Are Not Hypocrites By Filling Supreme Court Vacancy

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Sen. John Barrasso was pretty clear: there is no hypocrisy on the part of the Republican-controlled Senate by moving forward to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created with the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Wyoming’s junior senator, appearing on NBC’s Meet the Press, was repeatedly accused by host Chuck Todd of saying one thing in 2016 and another thing in 2020, but Barrasso didn’t budge.

Barrasso said Republican Leadership — four years ago and now — are merely following the rules as established by Democratic nominee for president Joe Biden when he was the chairman of the Judiciary Committee back in 1988.

“Joe Biden was clear when he said when there is a Senate of one party and a White House of the other — and he said this to President George Herbert Walker Bush — if there’s a vacancy in that final year, we will not confirm and that’s what (Republicans) did with Merrick Garland,” Barrasso said of President Obama’s selection for the Supreme Court who did not receive a hearing in 2016.

“But 29 times, Chuck, there have been vacancies in the year of a presidential election and if both the White House and the Senate are of the same party, they go forward with the confirmation,” he said.

Todd didn’t put much stock in the “division of power” argument, calling it a footnote and a new explanation.

“Not once did you say: ‘Oh, it depends on what party the Senate holds versus the party of the President,’ Todd said. “This just sounds like a power grab pure and simple.”

Barrasso didn’t flinch. He said to Todd, again, Republicans were merely following the “Biden rule” and because the White House and the Senate are of the same party, they are going to attempt to fill the vacancy.

“I can tell you what’s going to happen. The president is going to make a nomination and I believe it’s going to be this week,” he said. “We will hold hearings and there will be a vote on the floor of the United States Senate this year.”

Clearly frustrated, Todd attempted one last time to get a different reaction from Barrasso by saying Republicans will look like hypocrites and their arguments will make “no sense to the average person.”

It didn’t work. Barrasso held strong.

“This is the consistent principle and policies that have been followed through the history of the United States when 29 vacancies occurred in years of presidential elections. We’re going to be consistent with all of that,” he said.

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Cheney: Our Cities Are Burning Because Dems Won’t Stand Up To Thugs

in Liz Cheney/News/politics

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney continued to speak out against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and vice president nominee Sen. Kamala Harris this week.

On Tuesday, Cheney delivered remarks at a House Republican news event regarding the GOP’s “Commitment to America” agenda, which calls for restoring American ideals and rebuilding the economy.

She noted the importance of participating in the general election in November, describing it as being critical to future legislation regarding the coronavirus, the economy, the military and “our founding values.”

“Every single day, the Democrats tell us what they would do in…’a Harris administration with Joe Biden,'” Cheney said. “They would defund our police, dismantle our freedom, destroy our history and abandon our founding values.”

Cheney continued to criticize the Democratic party in her speech, blaming Democratic administrations’ policies for this year’s wildfires in the West Coast states.

She also blamed unrest, violence and looting seen in several cities across the nation on the failure of Democrat leaders to enforce laws in their communities.

“Our cities are burning because Democrats won’t stand up against the rioting of thugs who are destroying the lives built by hard-working Americans over decades,” the representative said.

Neither did Cheney mince words when discussing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, whom Cheney has commented about many times in the past. She called the House speaker a “partisan hack” during her speech.

“The Democrats leading this House care so little about the American people that they have squandered 17 months trying to score political points while our nation faces unprecedented challenges,” she said.

The representative closed her comments by reiterating that the Republican party will continue to fight for American values and return power to the people all across the republic.

“We’ll make sure that our children know the unparalleled contribution to freedom this nation has made, and that they know that we enjoy the blessings of every one of those freedoms because of the men and women who wear the uniform of this country and who have sworn to protect us all,” she said.

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Barrasso: Pelosi “Fixated” On Bailing Out Big Cities, Poorly-Run States

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

U.S. Sen John Barrasso took to the airwaves this week to again criticize Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic Party, two topics also frequently on the mind of his colleague U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney.

Barrasso appeared on CNN this week with correspondent Jim Sciutto to talk about the much-discussed second coronavirus stimulus package. The host asked Barrasso why the Democrats and Republicans couldn’t reach a compromise when it came to the stimulus package, something the Wyoming Republican was asked about earlier this month.

The senator blamed Pelosi for not being able to reach a compromise on the bill, saying she rejected a bipartisan effort by the “problem solvers.”

“[Pelosi] seems to be fixated on bailing out big cities and sending a blank check to states that have been poorly managed for a long time and using the coronavirus as an excuse,” he said.

Sciutto asked Barrasso twice if he would be willing to compromise on the issue, but the senator never gave a “yes” or “no” answer. He said he’d be willing to do everything possible in a “targeted way” to help people impacted by the coronavirus.

He reiterated a point he made earlier this month, saying he wouldn’t use the stimulus package to pay illegal immigrants or “environmental justice.”

Sciutto also called on Barrasso’s medical expertise, asking his thoughts on comments President Donald Trump made about whether masks or face coverings reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

Barrasso said he thought masks did help reduce the spread, pointing out he wears one and reminding viewers that they should use a mask whenever they can’t properly social distance.

He added that the United States has made “huge progress” in the research regarding the virus and that 800,000 tests are being processed each day, the number of active cases are beginning to go down and the death count is also starting to drop.

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Enzi Criticizes EPA Decision On Small Refineries

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

A decision by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to deny requests by small oil refineries to be considered exempt from renewable fuel standards will hurt energy workers, U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi said Monday.

Enzi, in a news release, criticized the decision of EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler to deny requests from 17 refineries, including some in Wyoming, to either reconsider their requests for exemptions from the rules or apply those exemptions to the years from 2011 to 2018.

“I’m disappointed in the EPA’s denial of these important small refinery waivers,” Enzi said in the news release. “The Renewable Fuel Standard program is in many ways a broken system, and exemptions are necessary for our small refineries to compete on a level playing field.”

The Renewable Fuel Standard program sets levels of renewable fuels such as biofuels to be included in gasoline and diesel.

When the program was launched small refineries — those producing 75,000 barrels of fuel a day or less — were exempted from the rules if they could prove that obeying those rules would “impose a disproportionate economic hardship” on them.

In March, the 17 small refineries in Wyoming and 13 other states asked the EPA to either reconsider its denials of exemptions they had requested between 2011 and 2018 or grant them retroactive exemptions for the same period even if they did not request the exemptions.

The request was denied because Wheeler said the refineries failed to prove the requirements of the program would impose an undue economic burden on them.

Refineries have argued without the exemptions, it is too expensive for them to produce fuels that meet the renewable fuel standards.

Enzi said in his release the decision would create negative impacts on the oil industry.

“This decision could hurt many energy workers in Wyoming and across the country,” he said.

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Barrasso: Trump’s Leadership Responsible For Economic Recovery

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso spent a portion of the long holiday weekend touting President Donald Trump’s leadership on Fox News with host Charles Payne.

When Payne mentioned that unemployment had fallen to 8.4% in August, lower than originally predicted, Barrasso credited the improvement to Trump and Congressional Republicans working to get Americans back to work.

“The experts were all wrong,” the senator said. “They said we’d still be at 16% unemployment. We still have a ways to go. You heard (presidential candidate) Joe Biden say he would shut down the economy. That’s a mindless thing to do.”

As in many of his other recent television appearances, the senator didn’t mince words when it came to Biden, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi or Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Barrasso said he expected Schumer and Pelosi to block an coronavirus upcoming aid package that would include paycheck protection and would help people get back to work. He joked that the Democratic Party leaders thought the party would do better in the upcoming general election if “more people are suffering.”

While making a jab at Pelosi’s recent controversy involving a visit to a California hair salon, Barrasso said the speaker would look like a Disney villain if she shot down the aid package.

“This is Nancy Pelosi as Cruella de Vil saying ‘No’ to a paycheck protection for workers and small businesses all around the country,” he said. “But at the same time, telling one small business they should open, but only open for her. This is a sign of contempt for the American workers.”

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Cheney Slams Biden, Pelosi For Not Speaking Out Against Defunding The Police

in Liz Cheney/News/politics

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

In signing a pledge offering “unwavering” support for America’s police officers, Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney blasted former Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for not condemning the “Defund The Police” movement.

“I proudly signed Heritage Action’s ‘Police Pledge,’ which states that we unequivocally support our police officers & will oppose any effort to defund them,” Cheney tweeted. “Our police officers in Wyoming & across the country are heroes & they deserve to be treated as such.”

“Democrats like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi, who don’t speak out against the reckless campaign to ‘defund’ our police, are irresponsible and dangerous,” she said.

This wasn’t the first time Cheney slammed Pelosi this week. On Wednesday, Cheney took a swipe against the House Speaker for using a hair salon in San Francisco when all hair salons are supposed to be closed due to the pandemic.

“Hairpocrisy,” Cheney tweeted while posting a story of Pelosi’s ill-fated trip.

In related news, President Trump on Friday received an endorsement from the Fraternal Order of Police.

“Public safety will undoubtedly be a main focus for voters in this year’s election,” a spokesman for the organization said. “Look at what the national discourse has focused on for the last six months. President Trump has shown time after time that he supports our law enforcement officers and understands the issues our members face every day.”

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Barrasso: Pelosi ‘Coronavirus Bill’ Sends Money to Illegal Immigrants & ‘Environmental Justice’

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso told Fox Business host Stuart Varney that the U.S. Senate will be back in session next week to discuss a bill that would get the American people back to work, get kids back to school and get the coronavirus “in the rear view mirror.”

However, the Wyoming senator told Varney that he expected Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer would “continue to roadblock relief.”

“You can never outbid or outspend Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer,” he said.

He added that the two Democratic senators wanted $3 trillion for a coronavirus relief package.

Varney asked if the Senate Republicans and Democrats could compromise on the bill, calling it a “political necessity.”

Barrasso responded that the important goals right now are getting people back to work and kids back in school, but Schumer and Pelosi wanted to direct payments to illegal immigrants and earmark money for “environmental justice” causes and bailing out states that “have been in problems for decades.”

He added Senate Republicans wouldn’t get into a bidding war for the coronavirus bill.

Barrasso also criticized Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, saying that the former vice president’s ideas about “shutting down the country” again to protect against the coronavirus would have major consequences.

“I’m in Wyoming [where] people are back to work, their help wanted signs are up and people want to move forward,” Barrasso told Varney. “The country needs to move forward.”

Varney told the senator he expected Republicans and Democrats would likely make a compromise to spend at least $1 trillion on coronavirus relief.

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Barrasso: Trump Administration Definitely Focusing On Science

in Coronavirus/News/politics

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso dismissed any notions that President Donald Trump’s administration doesn’t listen to scientists, saying White House officials are “definitely” focusing on science in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The senator appeared on PBS News Hour this week to discuss various topics, from the Trump administration to the Republican National Convention.

Host Judy Woodruff referenced Trump’s recent touting of using blood plasma as a potential coronavirus treatment, noting scientists urged him and other White House officials to not say that, as there isn’t sufficient evidence to prove the theory yet.

When she asked the physician/senator if Trump was listening to science, Barrasso laughed.

“Science is being focused on, which is why so much effort is being done in coming up with a vaccine,” he said.

He added that the coronavirus vaccine would be the fastest vaccine development in history.

Woodruff also questioned Barrasso’s opinion on what the president’s responsibilities were and should be when it comes to a pandemic.

Barrasso said President Donald Trump was acting boldly earlier this year when he shut down travel between the United States and China, where the coronavirus originated.

He also pointed out that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio criticized Trump’s actions for shutting down travel, even though the virus was proven to be originated in China.

Barrasso added the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention failed with coronavirus testing in the early days of the pandemic, but then said the CDC’s performance had improved over the months, with more than 72 million coronavirus tests completed as of late August.

He then criticized New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, noting the most coronavirus-related deaths in the United States have occurred in New York.

“We know that the governor of New York let people go, with the disease, from the hospital back to nursing homes,” he said. “We can always do better. As a doctor, I will tell you, we’re still learning a lot about this disease.”

However, Barrasso said he was hearing from fellow Republicans and Wyomingites that they want a path forward from the coronavirus that allows them to go back to work and get the disease in the “rearview mirror.”

Barrasso again criticized Pelosi before ending his appearance, saying she wanted to pass a bill over the weekend relating to the United States Postal Service but “unrelated to jobs, the needs of the American people, trying to get kids back to school or the vaccine.”

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Wyoming Gun Owners (WYGO) Slams Losing Candidates After Election

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

A conservative pro-gun organization is trumpeting its victories in its efforts to defeat legislative candidates in last week’s primary election that it saw as too moderate.

Wyoming Gun Owners (WYGO) has posted items on its Facebook page throwing barbs at defeated legislative candidates including state Sen. Michael Von Flatern, R-Gillette, and Erin Johnson, a Republican who sought to unseat state Sen. Anthony Bouchard, R-Cheyenne.

“Senator Michael Von Flatern — you’re gonna have a lot more time to work on your cooking skills after that 64% – 36% shiner you took to the face (Tuesday) night,” read one posting, accompanied by a picture of Von Flatern baking. “Your mistake was in thinking that WYGO was like every other lobby group, that we would eventually want to play nice. We don’t want to play nice, we want to save our freedoms. You got in the way…..gun owners removed you.”

Von Flatern said he did not understand why WYGO was continuing to comment on candidates who were no longer in the race.

“I don’t have any idea why they’re doing it other than they want to prove a point,” he told Cowboy State Daily. “I would assume I’m done and they know that I’m done. They’re still attacking me because they’re vindictive. They won. They should just take it and go.”

Also targeted by WYGO was Sen. Ogden Driskill, R-Devils Tower, who is in the middle of his four-year term.

WYGO mentioned Driskill’s support for Von Flatern and Rep. Tyler Lindholm, R-Sundance, who lost in his re-election bid.

“Folks rumor has it ole Oggy was alternating between sobbing and panic attacks all day today,” another posting said. “You see, the Lindholm House seat is half of Oggy’s Senate seat. And Lindholm lost after calling for a tax increase….the same one Oggy called for.”

Driskill said he found attacks against candidates after they lose the election to be in poor taste.

“To trash somebody after they’ve lost and they’ve graciously congratulated the winner, to kick dirt on them and to gloat over it is un-Christian and it’s unbelievably crass and it’s really a bad way to do politics,” he said.

Driskill, who has been a staunch defender of Second Amendment issues while a member of the Legislature, said he found it interesting he would be labeled as “anti-gun” by WYGO.

He added WYGO used his association with other lawmakers to cast doubt on their stances.

“I think it’s pretty sad that I endorse somebody and they call them a liberal and (the candidate has) never had a chance to cast a vote (on legislation),” he said. “They decide they want to call them a liberal for whatever reason. I call it character assassination.”

Lindholm said he has not seen such comments being made after an election.

“I’ve never seen a pile-on after a defeat,” he said. “Usually the person who is defeated concedes and the person who won comes out and says ‘Good race, let’s move on to the next one.’”

Lindholm added that because WYGO is a lobbying organization, it may have to work with some of the people it has criticized.

“The reality is you’re going to have to work with these people again,” he said. “With this organization coming out and still swinging their baseball bat shows kind of a lack of understanding on the part of that leadership.”

Driskill and Lindholm agreed such tactics are more common in other areas.

“They’re creating the same exact culture that Washington, D.C., has,” Driskill said. “You take somebody down and strip their dignity. When you do this character assassination, you divide everybody into camps and you make everything partisan.”

Johnson, who challenged Sen. Anthony Bouchard, R-Cheyenne, in his bid for re-election, was also criticized by WYGO after the primary.

“Erin…..if you have to assure people you’re not part of the swamp, you’re in trouble. Which is, umm, why you lost,” said a post written in response to a posting from Johnson that discussed the campaign. “WYGO has dealt with scum like you for over a decade…and we’ll be exposing scum like you for the next decade. Nice try….but gun owners can smell a fraud from 100 miles away. #LOSER.”

Britney Wallesch, a Democrat who will face Bouchard in the general election, also questioned the tactic in her own Facebook post.

“It’s not enough that she lost because of blatant lies, which the governor himself refuted, but they had to gloat over it, too,” she wrote. “We can know a man by who his friends are.”

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