Asha Rangappa, an analyst for CNN and a former special agent for the FBI, tweeted a thread on Tuesday in which she said, “We have a biological terrorist in the White House.” This follows President Donald Trump returning to the White House on Monday evening after treatment for the Coronavirus at a military hospital and the news that more senior White House and military officials testing positive for the virus.
In defending her claim, Rangappa cited a Justice Department memo stating back in March that the novel Coronavirus “appears to meet the statutory definition of a biological agent” and that those who engage in the “purposeful exposure and infections of others” could be charged for terrorism-related offenses.
While there are some allegations that he knew about his positive diagnosis significantly earlier than he had announced it on Thursday evening, there is no certifiable evidence that he knowingly exposed officials and staffers to the virus.
For her tweet, Rangappa has received heavy criticism on Twitter.
Mr. and Mrs. Trump both tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday evening, alongside many political figures and staffers. The exact event where the President caught the virus remains uncertain.
However, the theory gaining the most traction supposes that the infection occurred at the Rose Garden ceremony where he announced Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court nominee on Saturday, September 26. Since many of those who were also infected attended the event, many place this as the “superspreader” event.
Since the end of last week, more and more White House officials have tested positive for COVID-19. On Monday, Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany announced her positive diagnosis following a weekend where she engaged with numerous reporters. On Tuesday, most of the nation’s top military leaders said that, after reports of multiple infections, they would enter quarantine.
Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which holds hearings on Supreme Court appointees, have also tested positive for the virus, alongside Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel.
You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.
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Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar kicked off House Foreign Affairs Committee
Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar was voted off the House Foreign Affairs Committee Thursday. The action was expected, as Republican members of Congress had criticized Omar’s antisemetic and anti-American rhetoric.
After intense debating on the House floor, the resolution passed with a 218-211 vote. Democrats attempted to pull the race card, accusing Republican House members of racism for removing Omar from the committee.
Omar also accused House Republicans of racism, saying, “I am Muslim, I am an immigrant, and interestingly, from Africa…Is anyone surprised that I am being targeted? Is anyone surprised that I am somehow deemed unworthy to speak about American foreign policy, or that they see me as a powerful voice that needs to be silenced?”
“There is this idea that you are a suspect if you are an immigrant or if you are from certain parts of the world or certain skin tone or a muslim.” Omar said during the heated debate. A fiery Alexandria Ocasia Cortez also chimed in shouting, “This is an attack on women of color!”
Republican Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, from New York, said she had personally witnessed Omar spew anti-American rhetoric. Malliotakis said, “I have been in that committee room where, the representative, equates Israel and the United States to Hamas and the Taliban. Absolutely unacceptable for a member of that committee.”
A four-page resolution was written for the justification of removing Omar from the house Foreign Affairs Committee. The resolution states that in 2019, Omar suggested that Jewish people were buying U.S. political support when she posted on Twitter, “it’s all about the Benjamins, baby.”
Omar also commented on the September 11th attacks saying, “some people did something.” This type of comment is unacceptable for any representative who is sitting on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, lawmakers said.
In the resolution it states that members of this committee should all be held to an “equal standard of conduct due to the international sensitivities and national security concerns under the jurisdiction of this committee.”
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