Oh look, the GOP's much-publicized case of a sexual assault in a Loudoun County, Va. school is not at all what they said it was.

It had nothing to do with transgender-inclusive bathroom policies. But Republicans feigned outrage that it did. huffpost.com/entry/gop-virg… via @aterkel
This was not a case of a teenage girl being ambushed in a girls' bathroom by a "gender fluid" teenage boy.

It was 2 teens who had been regularly using the girls' bathroom for consensual encounters, and then one of these encounters apparently turned violent.
News of the incident was picked up, twisted and amplified by conservative media, which said this was evidence that policies allowing students to use public bathrooms that match their gender ID put girls in danger.

Total garbage.
News of this incident blew up so much in conservative media that it became a central talking point in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week for a nominee to a federal court seat... in California.

It made no sense that it came up in that hearing.
The nominee in that hearing -- again, up for a court seat in Calif. -- had no idea about this assault in a school bathroom in Loudoun County, Va.

Why would she?

That did not stop every GOP senator from talking about it and fueling transphobic garbage. huffpost.com/entry/republic…
One by one, Republican senators in this committee hearing brought up the Loudoun County incident and used it to bolster the bogus narrative that transgender-inclusive bathrooms endanger girls.

They spent the vast majority of their time in this hearing talking about this.
They all referenced a legal brief this nominee once wrote, saying that curtains + separate changing spaces were sufficient for ensuring girls’ privacy in trans-inclusive bathrooms.

They used this brief as a way to bring up the Loudoun County sexual assault.
Sen. Grassley: “How would privacy curtains or changing spaces have prevented the sexual assault in Loudoun County?”

Sen. Hawley: “Do you stand by your comments...that there is no evidence of violence...in restrooms by allowing biological males to use bio females’ restrooms?”
Sen. Blackburn to this judicial nominee:

"It should not be lost on you how unsettled that Tennesseans that I represent are by your nomination because of what you have said about the transgender rights and the assault that happened in Loudoun County."
Sen. Lee also brought up this nominee's past legal briefs relating to trans-inclusive bathrooms.

“You’re aware of the recent incident that’s come to light in the Loudoun County district?” asked Lee.

“Well, I wasn’t before this morning,” said the nominee.
Why did they all bring this up?

A pretty plausible reason is that Virginia governor’s race is in a dead heat, less than two weeks out from the election.

Ginning up GOP voters by stoking transphobia is one way to get them out to the polls and tip the election.
Ted Cruz went as far as to suggest this nominee was lying about not knowing about this incident, since she had "spent years as one of the leading activists for allowing transgender biological men to use girls’ restrooms and women’s restrooms.”

Just a transphobic spectacle.
Here's more on what went down in that Senate hearing, where Republicans amplified a false narrative about the dangers of trans-inclusive bathrooms for girls, based on a bunk story, to apparently try to influence a tight Virginia governor's race. huffpost.com/entry/republic…
And here's more on what actually happened with the Virginia bathroom sexual assault case, which was in May. huffpost.com/entry/gop-virg…

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More from @jbendery

26 Oct
Good morning! ☕️

In case you missed it, last night, Senate Democrats confirmed longtime voting rights attorney and advocate Myrna Pérez to a lifetime seat on a U.S. appeals court. huffpost.com/entry/myrna-pe…
Perez's confirmation comes at a time when voting rights are under assault nationwide.

Republicans in 19 states have enacted at least 31 new laws THIS YEAR to restrict voting rights -- primarily targeting people of color -- and overhaul elections for their own partisan gains.
Not a single Republican senator voted to confirm Perez.

These are the same Republican senators who have now blocked voting rights legislation 3 times this year.
Read 8 tweets
25 Oct
Tonight, the Senate confirmed longtime voting rights attorney and advocate Myrna Pérez to a lifetime seat on a U.S. appeals court huffpost.com/entry/myrna-pe…
Perez's confirmation comes at a time when voting rights are under assault nationwide.

Republicans in 19 states have enacted at least 31 new laws this year to restrict voting rights and overhaul elections for their own partisan gains.
Every Democrat present voted to confirm Perez.

No Republicans voted for her. huffpost.com/entry/myrna-pe…
Read 5 tweets
25 Oct
The Congressional Women's Softball Game is THIS Wednesday.

It's female lawmakers vs female reporters. We play to raise $ for young survivors of breast cancer.

We're also encouraged to talk smack to gin up excitement, but I don't need to do that because we are going to win. 😃
Come on out to the game. All are welcome. It's one of few (the only?) events on Cap Hill that remains bipartisan and fun.

The lawmakers' team is led by @SenCapito + @DWStweets. They are fun. They will also be defeated by Bad News Babes. ⚾️

Details here: congwomensoftball.org
You never know who will show up at these games or what will happen.

Sonia Sotomayor threw out a pitch one year.

So did Gabby Giffords.

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (then a Rep.) randomly did cartwheels across the field. She was 56. Image
Read 8 tweets
21 Oct
Lots of Senate action on judicial nominees this week.

A little bit ago, the Senate confirmed Tana Lin to a lifetime seat on a U.S. district court in Washington state.

She'll be the first former public defender + first Asian American to serve as a federal judge in the state.
Lin is currently the president of the board of directors of the ACLU of Washington.

As an attorney for the ACLU, she also successfully challenged Trump's travel ban, obtaining a nationwide injunction preventing his admin from enforcing the policy affecting refugees.
Here she is with Sen. Murray in a cool silk (?) suit.
Read 4 tweets
21 Oct
This morning, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to send U.S. appeals court nominee Beth Robinson's nomination to the Senate floor for a final confirmation vote.

If confirmed, Robinson would be the first openly LGBTQ woman to ever serve on any U.S. appeals court.
The committee voted 10-9 to advance Robinson, who has been an associate judge on the Vermont Supreme Court since 2011.

No Republicans voted for her.
Here's more on Beth Robinson, who's on track to be a historic first. huffpost.com/entry/joe-bide…
Read 6 tweets
21 Oct
Good morning. ☕️

Senate Republicans turned a judicial nominee's hearing yesterday into a transphobic spectacle, making unverified and offensive claims about "a male wearing a skirt" involved in a Virginia sexual assault case. huffpost.com/entry/republic…
This hearing was supposed to be about Holly Thomas, Biden’s pick for a lifetime seat on a U.S. appeals court.

But Republicans used it to spout transphobic garbage about girls being unsafe in trans-inclusive bathrooms. It was all very 2016 tbh.
Nearly every Republican on the committee wanted to talk about a May incident involving a teenage boy sexually assaulting a teenage girl at a high school in Loudoun County, Va.

This was a hearing for a nominee to a California-based U.S. court seat. Hmm. What's going on here.
Read 23 tweets

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