“The hard-core base — Mastriano’s playing to it,” said Carl Fogliani, a Republican strategist based in Pittsburgh. “He has a following among core activists, and he’s trying to grow it out.”
A little-known state senator from central Pennsylvania until last year, Mastriano began developing a following among grassroots conservative activists even before the November election for his outspoken criticism of coronavirus-related restrictions.
He was “ahead of the curve” of other politicians on the issue, said Lowman Henry, president of the Pennsylvania Leadership Council, which puts on a state-based gathering of conservative activists.
Following the election, Henry said, “as is his typical fashion, he mounted the horse and led the charge on the election fraud issue as well, which only I think added to his luster with the Trump base, which is very large in Pennsylvania.”
In the months after the election. Mastriano built a national profile, beginning with his role in organizing a post-election hearing-turned-spectacle in Gettysburg featuring Giuliani and a call-in from Trump. And ever since, his fingerprints have been all over efforts by Trump and his allies to undermine the results of the November election. He was present in Washington on Jan. 6, the day of the U.S. Capitol riot. He visited Arizona recently to observe the ballot review there. And he pressed for a review of ballots elsewhere, including in Fulton County, a rural county that Trump won easily near Mastriano’s district.
Al Schmidt, a Republican elections commissioner in Philadelphia who was pilloried by Trump and his supporters for refusing to capitulate to baseless claims of voter fraud, recalled that Mastriano was “pretty vocal” during the presidential campaign but mostly struck him as just “a state senator from someplace else in Pennsylvania.”
He said, “It’s actually difficult to articulate what is going on, because it is so utterly detached from reality, and that was that the election was free and fair and not even close.”
Mastriano’s efforts have not produced evidence of widespread election fraud, but they’ve given him leverage in a likely run for governor.He met with Trump at Trump Tower in New York in May, and CNN is now tracking him down at events in his home state. Mastriano said Trump himself has encouraged him to run for governor.
“A year ago, would anyone have known Mastriano’s name out of a 50-mile radius of his district?” said David Becker, executive director of the nonpartisanCenter for Election Innovation & Research, lamenting what he called “a large segment of grifters that are looking to cash in” on baseless accusations of voter fraud. “And now, he can likely fundraise nationally off his name, his connections to Trump.”
It’s possible Mastriano is making too much of his connection to Trump, aggravating some in Trump world. After Mastriano said in a radio interview last month that the former president had asked him to run for governor, Jason Miller, a Trump adviser, said on Twitter that Trump “has not made any endorsement or commitments yet in this race.”
Still, when Mastriano and two other Pennsylvania lawmakers later traveled to Arizona, Trump heralded the “great patriots” led by Mastriano. That kind of statement — when repurposed on a mailer — could be significant in a Republican primary in Pennsylvania next year.
Mastriano, who did not respond to a request for comment, has said he’s still considering whether to run for governor, but he is widely expected to. The Republican primary is likely to be crowded, including former Rep. Lou Barletta and, potentially, Rep. Dan Meuser and former U.S. attorney Bill McSwain, among others.
“I think he’s probably got a pretty low cap in terms of the percentage of the primary electorate he can go after, which is probably what he’s trying to increase now in terms of going to Arizona and everything, in terms of being the Trumpiest of the Trumpers,” said Joshua Novotney, a Republican lobbyist and former adviser to Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
Given his relatively low name recognition, even after his ballot audit crusade, Novotney said, “I don’t think he’ll impress too many donors.”
He said, “A lot of the Trump supporters are trying to move on and win races… even if they feel things may have been stolen.”
Still, the fact that Mastriano is even in the mix is along way from 2018, when he couldn’t even get out of a congressional primary, finishing fourth in the race for an open seat in a solidly Republican district in southern Pennsylvania.
Today, the retired Army colonel is one of the most prominent examples of a class of politicians who are building careers off the doubt cast on the results of the November election, both benefiting from and reinforcing the belief in Trump’s lie — widely held position among Republican voters — that the election was rigged.
“[Mastriano] absolutely has the right idea that we still don’t have a full accounting of what happened in the 2020 election,” said Bruce Marks, a Republican lawyer who has done work for the Trump campaign and who met with Mastriano last month. “I think he’s absolutely on the right track.”
Marks, a former Pennsylvania lawmaker who was seated as a state senator only after a court determined in 1994 that widespread voter fraud had resulted in his Democratic opponent’s apparent victory, said he met with Mastriano largely to share with him the details of that case — a rallying cry for Republicans who insist that the presidential election can still be overturned.
“I wish this was like 1994,” Mastriano said, suggesting the media that year had done a “fantastic job” finding fraud. In the same speech, Mastriano compared the November election unfavorably to elections run in “war-torn Kosovo,” Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
New York City Mayoral Candidate Curtis Sliwa sounded the alarm on Critical Race Theory this week; saying the toxic ideology has no place in New York City’s school system.
“I got three sons in public schools, all of whom should have been redshirted – as all children should have been redshirted because we stole an academic year from them in which they spent half the time playing Fortnite and Roblox instead of listening to instruction – if they even had a laptop,” he told Fox News Wednesday. “Instead of doing that and leaving everyone back and allowing them to progress academically, we’re talking about the problem [of] systemic racism.”
“Let’s face it. If the kid can’t read, if the child can’t write, if the child can’t function in a classroom atmosphere, how can [educators] anticipate creating a culturally diverse curriculum that is going to address that problem?” he said. “So it’s back to the basics. It’s what I was raised with. It’s what most Americans were raised with. It worked for our generations. Why are we changing it for this new generation, and in fact, handicapping them?”
“The problem in the classrooms of our public school system is not any bias that teachers have. It’s not systemic racism that is causing the classrooms to be unmanageable with young people who are not only truant but disruptive in the classroom,” he said. “It’s the children and the young adults who need sessions in behavioral management and how to behave in school because clearly, they’re not getting that at home.”
“That means we’re not focusing on reading, writing, arithmetic, and the most important is teaching our children respect to the administrators, safety officers and the other school personnel,” he said. “That’s where the problem is. And everybody wants to avoid it.”
SLIWA BLASTS DE BLASIO: ‘You’re a Police Hater! There is No Doubt About It!’
posted by Hannity Staff – 7.01.21
Guardian Angels founder and Republican candidate for Mayor of New York City Curtis Sliwa ripped Bill de Blasio in downtown Manhattan Thursday; saying the current leader of the nation’s biggest metropolis is a “police hater.”
“You now have almost a billion-dollar budget — more than most countries — and you still won’t re-fund the police!” Sliwa said.
“Which means you’re a police hater! There is no doubt about it.”
“The reality is we need more police, we need to hire more police. We need to take the handcuffs off the police and put it on the criminals.”
“We had a lot of different needs to bring the city back. We had to focus on jobs. We had to focus on schools … I think we really struck a balance,” said de Blasio at a press conference when asked about the funding.
SLIWA on HANNITY: AOC is ‘All Out Crazy’, Nothing But a ‘Sanctimonious Hypocrite’ on Public Safety
posted by Hannity Staff – 6.29.21
New York Mayoral Candidate Curtis Sliwa ripped the city’s Democratic leadership on ‘Hannity’ Monday night where he slammed AOC, a.k.a All Out Crazy, for having armed security guards while denying public safety to average people.
“You have dedicated decades of your life to fighting crime… This city now, New Yorkers want to be safe, but are there enough of them?” asked Hannity.
“You’re right. AOC – All Out Crazy- who has armed security officers with her at all times. Just like the rest of her Democrat Socialists of America and Social Justice Warriors, who are all sanctimonious hypocrites. They deny public safety to average people by putting handcuffs on the police instead of the criminals!” said Sliwa.
“I never surrender. I never retreat. Last summer, when the looters took over the city streets, I was out there battling them with the Guardian Angels,” he added.
Recently sworn-in Congresswoman Ilhan Omar weighed-in on the country’s escalating border crisis this week; baselessly blaming the migrant caravan’s arrival in El Paso on “white nationalism.”
“This is abhorrent and inhumane. It’s without a doubt a reflection of what white nationalism is doing to our country. As a country, we have to acknowledge that this is how people are being treated here and decide that we are better and we must do better,” tweeted Omar.
This is abhorrent and inhumane.
It’s without a doubt a reflection of what white nationalism is doing to our country. As a country, we have to acknowledge that this is how people are being treated here and decide that we are better and we must do better. https://t.co/5YNAJFNZo7
The embattled legislator made national headlines weeks ago when she accused American politicians of supporting Israel due to secret campaign donations and a “dual loyalty” to the Jewish State.
OMAR ERUPTS AGAIN: Ilhan Omar Claims Israel Denying ‘Freedom’ to Millions, Mocks Their ‘Democracy’
posted by Hannity Staff – 8.20.19
Embattled Rep. Ilhan Omar continued to escalate her fiery rhetoric against Israel this week; saying their government is denying “freedom” to millions of Palestinians while mocking the Jewish State’s “Democracy.”
NEW: Rep. Ilhan Omar on U.S. aid to Israel: “We must be asking, as Israel’s ally, the Netanyahu government stop the expansion of settlements on Palestinian land and ensure full rights for Palestinians if we are to give them aid.” https://t.co/BflAp7aeirpic.twitter.com/tsSWcN22SU
“We in the United States have a constructive role to play. We give Israel more than $3 billion in aid every year. This is predicated on them being an important ally in the region, and the ‘only democracy’ in the Middle East,” mocked Omar.
“We must be asking, as Israel’s ally, the Netanyahu government stop the expansion of settlements on Palestinian land and ensure full rights for Palestinians if we are to give them aid,” she added.
Omar posted a massive, anti-Israeli tirade on social media Friday, just hours after she was denied entry into the Jewish State for her outspoken support of multiple boycott initiatives.
“Let’s be clear: the goal of our trip was to witness firsthand what is happening on the ground in Palestine and hear from stakeholders —our job as Members of Congress. But since we were unable to fulfill our role as legislators, I am sharing what we would have seen,” she posted on Twitter. “First, I planned to hold meetings with members of the Knesset (both Jewish and Arab) along with Israeli security officials.”
“The humanitarian crisis in Gaza is one of the worst in the world—with 97% of water unfit for human consumption and on the verge of collapse. Most of the people in Gaza are children,” she added. “77% of shops have closed bc of military occupation. Palestinians walk with garbage nets above their heads, put up to catch trash thrown by settlers. Violent attacks on Palestinians are routine.”
Let’s be clear: the goal of our trip was to witness firsthand what is happening on the ground in Palestine and hear from stakeholders —our job as Members of Congress.
But since we were unable to fulfill our role as legislators, I am sharing what we would have seen. (THREAD)
President Joe Biden confused his former Boss with the former President during a speaking event Wednesday; stating he was in charge of the Great Recession under Donald Trump before correcting himself moments later.
“Back in 2009, during the Great Recession, the President asked me to be in charge of managing that, then President Trump. Excuse me, Freudian slip, that was the last President, he caused, anyway, that was President Obama, when I was Vice President,” bumbled Biden.
The President’s behavior in recent weeks has raised new questions over his fitness for office.
Biden snapped at reporters from the Oval Office Monday alongside the Iraqi Prime Minister; calling one members of the press pool a “pain in the neck.”
“Mr. President, Veterans Affairs is going to have a mandate for its healthcare…” started the reporter.
“You are such a pain in the neck!” exclaimed Biden. “That has nothing to do with Iraq.”
“I take that as a compliment,” fired-back the journalist.
“I’ll answer your question. Yes, Veterans Affairs is going to require that workers have to be vaccinated,” confirmed the President.
His comments come hours after he launched into a bizarre speech where he seemingly forgot the name of a member of Congress then asked about the location of a guest’s mother.
“Congressman Scott, Congressman, … where is he? There you are… You understand this better than anybody does. I want to thank you Congressman for all your work,” said Biden.
“I want to thank you all for being here… By the way, where’s mom? Is she here? She’s watching, oh okay. I thought they looked and said mom was out there. I was going to ask her to stand up. But mom, you can’t stand up if you’re home,” added the President.
Joe Biden forgets a congressman’s name, then confuses whether a guest’s mother is attending the event.
AXELROD ON BIDEN: ‘He Either Can Cut It, Or He Can’t’
posted by Hannity Staff – 8.15.19
Democratic strategist David Axelrod weighed-in Thursday on Joe Biden’s potentially reduced campaign schedule; saying “this is bad advice” and claiming the former Vice President can “either cut it or he can’t.”
“This is bad advice. You can’t cloister the candidate and win. He either can cut it or he can’t, and the only way he can prove he can is to be an active and vigorous candidate. He’s running for president of the United States, for God’s sake!” posted Axelrod on social media.
This is bad advice. You can’t cloister the candidate and win. He either can cut it or he can’t, and the only way he can prove he can is to be an active and vigorous candidate. He’s running for president of the United States, for God’s sake!https://t.co/SCZmqVYapF
Allies and political insiders close to Joe Biden are reportedly telling the former Vice President to scale back his campaign stops and speaking events; hoping the reduced schedule will minimize future speaking gaffes.
“Allies to Joe Biden have been floating the idea of altering the former vice president’s schedule in an effort to reduce the gaffes he has made in recent days,” reports The Hill
. “The allies, growing increasingly nervous about Biden’s verbal flubs, have said it’s an approach that’s been suggested to campaign officials on the heels of the former vice president’s stumbles.”
“He needs to be a strong force on the campaign trail, but he also has to pace himself,” said one insider.
“I think you’ll see the same schedule and maybe even more Joe Biden,” one ally said. “Everyone wants to see Joe Biden be Joe Biden. If he’s held back in any way, that’s almost the antithesis of who he is.”
“I think it’s the wrong approach,” they added.
“Joe Biden has spoken his mind his entire life, which voters know and love about him,” said Biden’s deputy campaign manager. “He’s a real person, he’s authentic, and that will never change. He’s going to keep taking on Trump and making the case to voters about the stakes we face in this election, regardless of how the press chooses to cover him.”
President Trump routinely refers to Biden as “sleepy Joe.”
60% of the POPULATION? Biden Says ‘200 Million People’ Have Died in the US from CoVID
posted by Hannity Staff – 9.21.20
Former Vice President Joe Biden continued to baffle millions of Americans Sunday when discussing the Coronavirus pandemic in the country; falsely asserting “200 million people” have died in the USA from CoVID-19.
“It’s estimated that 200 million people will die, probably by the time I finish this talk,” said Biden.