Tuesday News: Misadministration

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NC STATE REFUSES TO TAKE ACTION AGAINST PROUD BOY EMPLOYEE: After investigating allegations of an employee’s “malicious online activities,” N.C. State University announced Monday that its review “did not substantiate any significant allegations.” The employee, Chadwick Jason Seagraves, was reported to be a member of the Proud Boys, a right-wing group that has been associated with protests organized by white supremacists and designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Seagraves was also accused of harassing an N.C. State student online and helping publish and distribute personal information of left-wing activists in Portland, Oregon, and in Asheville with malice, the News & Observer previously reported. NC State worked with external investigators to determine the validity of the allegations, including examining electronic data on Seagraves’ work computers and his online activity while working, according to the university.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article248422860.html

MARK MARTIN IS AVOIDING QUESTIONS ABOUT TRUMP CONVERSATION: Martin has not responded to questions about the report, which comes as an un-sourced, one-sentence note in a longer Times piece about moves House Democrats are making to impeach the president, and the back-and-forth that led to last Wednesday's Trump-rally-turned-riot. The Times reported that Trump called Pence in an effort to convince him he could reject electoral college votes when the House and Senate met to certify the election, a power constitutional scholars have said repeatedly is not granted the vice president. "At one point, Mr. Trump told the vice president that he had spoken with Mark Martin, the former chief justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, who he said had told him that Mr. Pence had that power," The Times reported. WRAL News has not been able to independently verify The Times' reporting. Martin, who left the North Carolina Supreme Court in 2019 to become dean of the law school at Regent University in Virginia, declined an interview request Monday through a university spokesman.
https://www.wral.com/did-trump-consult-a-former-nc-chief-justice-ahead-of-capitol-attack/19467088/

(U.S.) SUPREME COURT RULES THAT UNC MUST RELEASE SEXUAL ASSAULT RECORDS: The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill of a lower court decision requiring it to release disciplinary records of students who violated the school's sexual assault policies. The court issued a two-sentence decision without additional comment, listed among a host of orders. Last May, the N.C. Supreme Court ruled 4-3 that the flagship school of the UNC system had to release the records. The school had been sued by a media coalition including Capitol Broadcasting Co. and the school's student newspaper, The Daily Tar Heel. In September 2016, the group requested documents under the North Carolina Public Records Act. The university denied the request, arguing that the records were protected by the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act, which shields academic records from public disclosure. The former general counsel for the North Carolina Press Association spoke in an interview with WRAL, adding, "I am especially grateful that the result in this case upholds North Carolina's long-established policy that public records are the property of the people, not government officials."
https://www.thetimesnews.com/story/news/2021/01/11/supreme-court-rejects-unc-appeal-sex-assault-disc...

FBI WARNS OF ARMED DEMONSTRATORS THREATENING ALL 50 STATE CAPITALS: The FBI warned Monday that armed far-right extremist groups are planning to march on state capitals this weekend, triggering a rush to fortify government buildings amid concerns that the violence that erupted at the U.S. Capitol last week could spread throughout the country. The memo is something of a raw intelligence product, compiling information gathered by the bureau and several other government agencies, an official said. Some of it is unverified, and the threat is likely to differ significantly from place to place, though the memo said there were plans in all 50 state capitals, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the bulletin is considered a law enforcement document not authorized for wide public release. But the data points it highlights for law enforcement are nonetheless troubling — including that there was information suggesting people might storm government offices, or stage an uprising were President Trump to be removed from office, the official said. Officials in many states had already begun taking steps to increase security and plan for additional violence in response to protests last week. On Monday, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) announced that he was activating the National Guard to provide support for the Capitol Police in Madison. The troops are members of the Wisconsin National Guard Reaction Force and are trained to quickly deploy in a crisis. On Saturday, heavily armed demonstrators surrounded the Kentucky Capitol. The protesters, dressed in camouflage and carrying assault weapons and zip-tie handcuffs, vowed to continue to support Trump while railing against Gov. Andy Beshear (D) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/state-capitals-armed-protests-fbi/2021/01/11/d8ec0312-544d-1...

BIDEN HAS A PLAN FOR SENATE TO SPLIT ITS TIME BETWEEN TRUMP IMPEACHMENT AND BIDEN NOMINEES: The vice president has already indicated that he was unlikely to force the president aside, and no one in either party expected Mr. Trump to step down. With that in mind, Democrats had already begun preparing a lengthier impeachment report documenting the president’s actions and the destruction that followed to accompany their charge. They were confident they had the votes to make Mr. Trump the first president ever to be impeached twice. The impeachment drive came as President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. signaled more clearly than before that he would not stand in the way of the impeachment proceeding, telling reporters in Newark, Del., that his primary focus was trying to minimize the effect an all-consuming trial in the Senate might have on his first days in office. He said he had consulted with lawmakers about the possibility they could “bifurcate” the proceedings in the Senate, such that half of each day would be spent on the trial and half on the confirmation of his cabinet and other nominees. The motion on Monday set off a high-stakes standoff between two branches of government, as House Democrats pressured Mr. Pence to intervene. If he did not, the Democrats promised a vote on Wednesday charging the president with “inciting violence against the government of the United States.”
https://www.nytimes.com/live/2021/01/12/us/impeachment-trump-25th-amendment

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Madison Cawthorne slammed by George Erwin

From the Charlotte Observer (no link to article - it's behind a subscriber only wall):

A North Carolina lawman who endorsed Rep. Madison Cawthorn has pulled his support because the freshman Republican spoke at the rally before a violent mob stormed the Capitol. “As a law-enforcement officer, I should have seen the red flags,” former Henderson County Sheriff George Erwin told The Charlotte Observer. Cawthorn, who was accused of sexual harassment before he became the youngest congressman, has insisted he bears no blame for what happened after he spoke to the crowd on Jan. 6. But Erwin isn’t having it. “Words mean things. You can inflame a group and you can calm a group by the words you used. To me, he inflamed,” Erwin said. “You rile people up and then afterwards, you’re going to say, ‘Well, this is appalling. This is appalling and I back the blue.’ No, you don’t. You fired these people up and the first line of defense was law enforcement. People are dead. You can’t take that back.”

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Law enforcement has to draw the line, and begin by policing its own ranks. They are not all the same, but that needs to be demonstrated, it's no longer an option to rely on blanket support from conservatives. That blanket is a moth-bitten rag.