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Senate Republicans Dodge Questions About Trump’s “Baseless” Tweet, Again Refuse to Hold Him Accountable

Vulnerable Senate Republicans on the ballot in November are refusing to condemn Trump’s peddling of conspiracy theories about a 75-year-old peaceful protester who remains in the hospital after he was violently injured. When asked to respond to Trump’s conspiracy tweet, GOP Senators feigned ignorance or dodged the questions — even when reporters printed out the tweet for them to read.

This is just the latest in what is becoming a weekly ritual of Republicans refusing to stand up to President Trump for his failed leadership – last week, vulnerable Senate Republicans declined to hold President Trump accountable for his actions which led to peaceful protesters being tear-gassed and removed from a public square and some Republicans even defended him. 

The cowardice displayed by Senate Republicans is earning them some well-deserved coverage:

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

CNN: Senate GOP dodges over Trump’s baseless Buffalo tweet: ‘I would rather not hear it’

By Manu Raju, Clare Foran and Lauren Fox

  • A number of Republican senators dodged questions or were silent on Tuesday when pressed for reaction after President Donald Trump suggested without evidence that a 75-year-old man who was seriously injured after being shoved by police officers in Buffalo, New York, last week, may have been part of a “set up.’
  • Sen. Kelly Loeffler, a Republican from Georgia, wouldn’t answer a question about the President’s tweet as she hopped on an elevator along with an aide in the Capitol.
  • CNN printed out a copy of the President’s tweet and tried to read it to Republican Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska, who said he hadn’t seen it, and then said: “I don’t want to comment right now. I’m on my way to a meeting. I’ll see it when I see it.”
  • Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas said that he hasn’t seen the tweet: “You know a lot of this stuff just goes over my head.”

POLITICO: ‘Ugh’: Republicans cringe after Trump’s attack on 75-year old protester

By Marianne Levine and Burgess Everett

  • If there was ever a tweet from President Donald Trump that Senate Republicans didn’t want to touch, it’s this one.
  • For four years, Senate Republicans have endured a regular gantlet of reporters’ questions about Trump tweets, ranging from attacks on their own colleagues to telling a handful of congresswomen of color to “go back” to the countries they came from.
  • Trump’s tweet Tuesday morning attacking a 75-year old protester in Buffalo — who was shoved by the police and bled from his head after falling — stunned some in a caucus that’s grown used to the president’s active Twitter feed. After examining a print-out of the tweet, Sen. Lisa Murkowski gasped: “oh lord, Ugh.”
  • Many GOP senators declined Tuesday to respond to Trump’s tweet suggesting Martin Gugino, the Buffalo protester, “could be an ANTIFA provocateur.’ The president added, without evidence, that Gugino may have been trying to “set up” the police officers who hurt him. The tweet did not come up at the Republicans’ weekly lunch, according to an attendee.
  • Republican senators have a well-worn playbook by now if they don’t want to wade into the latest tweet-fueled controversy by saying they hadn’t seen Trump’s latest comments. Still, even when provided paper copies of the president’s tweet on Tuesday, many declined to view them.
  • Sens. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) declined to comment on the tweet, saying they hadn’t read it. When asked whether they wanted to see the tweet, both showed little interest. Sen Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said he had “no information about that man or who he is.
  • When asked about Trump’s tweet, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine.) merely replied: “I think it would best if the president did not comment on issues that are before the courts.”

The Week: GOP senators claim they haven’t seen Trump’s tweet about Buffalo protester even when it’s printed out for them

By Tim O’Donnell

  • A few GOP senators claim they don’t even want to look at President Trump’s baseless tweet about a 75-year-old Buffalo protester injured by police officers last week, let alone talk about it.
  • Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) was asked about the tweet Tuesday, but said he hadn’t seen it and wasn’t planning to, saying he is instead focused on a bill he’s bringing to the Senate floor. His colleague, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), also claimed he hadn’t seen the tweet because he “only writes” things on Twitter and doesn’t read what other people post. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) didn’t say whether he read the tweet, but admitted things like that “just goes over my head.”
  • Either way, it looks like the lawmakers prefer to pretend it never happened, rather than either defend or rebuke the president.

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Gardner, Daines “At Real Risk Of Losing Their Seats,” Attempt to Save Political Careers By Greenwashing Records [New York Times]

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