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I write Popular Information, an independent newsletter dedicated to accountability journalism. | judd@popular.info | Signal/Text: 202-599-7124 | DMs open
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Jun 13 9 tweets 3 min read
UPDATE: The exposé of @WeAreSinclair that I put together with @atrupar has garnered millions of views online and on cable TV

Sinclair is NOT HAPPY

In a statement, Sinclair called our reporting "outrageous and offensive."

I call it "accurate" Image 2. Sinclair injected deceptive attacks on Biden's age into dozens of local news broadcasts. We documented how local affiliates owned by Sinclair promoted a flawed @WSJ story questioning Biden's mental acuity, using the same script

You can watch it:
Jun 12 6 tweets 2 min read
1. More than 75% of Americans believe that crime is INCREASING

Yesterday, the FBI released statistics that after a dramatic decline in 2023, crime is was down again in the first quarter of 2024:

Murder: -26.4%
Rape: -25.7%
Robbery: -17.8%
Property crime: -15.1%

This week, the @nytimes published 18 STORIES on Hunter Biden's trial and ZERO STORIES on the new FBI crime statsImage 2. Trump has made the (false) contention that crime in the US is skyrocketing a central component of his presidential campaign.

He's capitalizing on the misconceptions of Americans.

Only 33% of Americans approve of Biden's handling of crime.

Jun 11 12 tweets 4 min read
1. @WSJ & @WeAreSinclair, both controlled by right-wing tycoons, are pushing specious claims about Biden's fitness for office to millions

@WSJ produced a flawed piece questioning Biden's mental fitness

@WeAreSinclair injected the story into local news, forcing dozens of anchors to read the same script saying concerns about Biden's age could be an "election decider"

WATCH: 2. The @WSJ article boasts that it is based on "interviews with more than 45 people over several months." But only one person is quoted on the record supporting the thesis of the piece: Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA)

McCarthy is a partisan Republican interested in inflicting political damage on Biden. And what McCarthy told the @WSJ about Biden is directly contradicted by comments that McCarthy said previously — both publicly and privately. In March 2023, the @NYT reported that "McCarthy has told allies that he has found Mr. Biden to be mentally sharp in meetings." McCarthy made similar comments about Biden in public, praising Biden as "[v]ery professional, very smart" and "[v]ery tough at the same time."
Jun 10 11 tweets 4 min read
1. The @NCGOP selected @markrobinsonNC as the party's nominee for governor. He's one of the most radical gubernatorial candidates in history

Robinson's fundraising is lagging -- many people don't want to be publicly associated with him

So Republican legislators have launched a brazen plan to ALLOW WEALTHY PEOPLE TO LAUNDER MONEY to Robinson with no fingerprints

🧵 2. Under existing North Carolina campaign finance law, corporations cannot contribute directly or indirectly to state campaigns or committees. This prevents the main national fundraising vehicles for gubernatorial campaigns — @DemGovs and @GOPGovs — from donating to NC political committees. These committees, known as 527s, accept unlimited contributions from corporations.
Jun 6 9 tweets 3 min read
1. Black women make up 8% of the US population and received 0.0006% of total funding from venture capitalists from 2009-17.

In recent years, it's been well below 1%.

But right-wing activists have just convinced two Trump-appointed judges that Black women are receiving TOO MUCH venture capital money and are benefiting from illegal racial preferences

Follow along for details 🧵 2. Fearless Fund awards 20K grants to small businesses that are majority-owned by Black women.

The American Alliance for Equal Rights, a group that represents aggrieved white people, filed suit to shut down the grant program

Jun 4 12 tweets 4 min read
1. One of the main drivers of inflation in the US is skyrocketing rents, which are up 30%+ over the last four years.

So, it's surprising that the recent FBI RAID on a corporate landlord based in Atlanta has received little attention.

The raid was part of a federal probe of an alleged CRIMINAL CONSPIRACY AMONG LARGE LANDLORDS TO JACK UP RENTAL PRICES

Follow along to learn how the scheme works

🧵 2. The investigation centers around RealPage, advanced property management software used by many corporate landlords.

Landlords that are supposed to be in competition w/each other "outsource daily pricing and ongoing revenue oversight" to RealPage

Jun 3 11 tweets 5 min read
1. Trump is now a convicted felon.

Since the verdict, various politicians and pundits have advanced arguments suggesting that Trump's convictions were illegitimate, unfair, or inconsequential.

In this thread, I will dismantle these one by one.

🧵 2. Perhaps the most common argument is that the charges against Trump were "obscure" and "entirely unprecedented."

On the most basic level, this is false.

The same office has prosecuted dozens of cases of first-degree falsification of business records over the last 15 years.

It's the bread and butter of the Manhattan DA.

It is true that prosecuting someone for falsifying business records to conceal a campaign finance violation is uncommon — but that is because the crime itself is uncommon.

There are not that many people who run for political office in New York who also run their own businesses. And even fewer who falsify business records as part of a conspiracy to conceal violations of campaign finance law to help them win.

The idea that the prosecution is unusual is important only if it suggests that the government routinely lets others get away with similar conduct. There is no evidence suggesting that this is true.
May 30 13 tweets 5 min read
1. Across the country, inspired by Trump, Republican legislators have passed laws restricting how teachers can discuss race and gender

This week, a federal judge struck down one such law as unconstitutional, citing the experience of a high school teacher who showed her class the music video for Beyoncé's Formation

🧵Image 2. In 2021, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu (R) signed a new law, modeled after a Trump executive order, that prohibited government employees, including public school teachers, from promoting "divisive concepts."

May 29 7 tweets 3 min read
1. A civics training for teachers created by the Florida Dep't of Education likens a Canadian psychology board sanctioning @jordanbpeterson to the systematic mass murder of dissidents in Stalin's Soviet Union

Teachers should tell students that both actions are motivated by the same ideologyImage
2. The linking of "cancel culture" to the murder of hundreds of thousands is part of a new curriculum on "the dangers and evils of Communism."

@RonDeSantis signed a bill in April that will make this mandatory for all Florida public school students

May 28 17 tweets 6 min read
1. The Florida Department of Education is training thousands of teachers to indoctrinate students in the tenets of Christian nationalism

We have receipts 🧾

Follow along for details

🧵 Image 2. A three-day training course on civic education, conducted throughout Florida in the summer of 2023, included a presentation on the "Influences of the Judeo-Christian Tradition" on the founding of the United States.

According to speaker notes accompanying one slide, teachers were told that "Christianity challenged the notion that religion should be subservient to the goals of the state," and the same hierarchy is reflected in America's founding documents.Image
May 23 9 tweets 3 min read
1. @tomemmer (R-MN), the @GOPMajorityWhip, issued a scathing statement condemning out-of-state college protesters, accusing them of anti-semitism

On Saturday, @mngop endorsed Royce White, an anti-Semite, to be the party's nominee for US Senate

What has Emmer said?

Nothing Image 2. In April 2022, Royce White wrote on his Substack that the faith of many Jewish people has been replaced by "materialism" and "a survivalist impulse that can give birth to the darkest of intentions and most grandiose effort for world control."

May 22 13 tweets 5 min read
1. On Monday, a federal judge dropped an extraordinarily important decision.

It has received ZERO media attention.

In 1871, Congress passed the Ku Klux Klan Act, which allowed people to sue law enforcement officers who violated their Constitutional rights. It was intended to curb white supremacist violence against Black Americans.

In 1967, the Supreme Court flipped it on its head.

They "interpreted" the Ku Klux Klan Act to provide "qualified immunity" to law enforcement officers who violate Constitutional rights in "good faith." It has allowed law enforcement officers who abuse their power to escape accountability.

A federal judge, Carlton Reeves, just issued a powerful ruling urging the Supreme Court to acknowledge its mistake and repeal the doctrine of qualified immunity.

Follow along if interested.

🧵Image 2. Here are the basics of the case before Reeves:

On February 13, 2020, Nicholas Robertson was shot in Jackson, Mississippi.

Two months later, Samuel Jennings was arrested for burglary and grand larceny in an unrelated incident.

Jennings provided Thomas with a rambling written statement pinning the blame for Robertson's murder on a man named Desmond Green.

Thomas used this uncorroborated statement to convince a grand jury to indict Green for murder.Image
May 16 10 tweets 4 min read
1. According to many billionaires, political pundits, and media figures, US universities are now vehicles for "woke" indoctrination

These institutions, they argue, are focused on teaching students about systemic racism, trans rights, and other "woke" topics

There is never any evidence to support these claims

It's all anecdotes and vibes.

So, let's look at the DATA

🧵Image 2. Open Syllabus, a non-profit group, has collected over 5.5 million syllabi at 4K+ US institutions of higher learning.

In 2023, "woke" terms like "critical race theory," "structural racism," or "transgender" appear in just 0.08% of syllabi.

May 15 7 tweets 2 min read
1. Trump has already violated his gag order 10 times by attacking the jury, witnesses, and the judge's daughter.

Now, his acolytes are flocking to NYC, launching the same attacks.

They appear to be reading from a common script.

It's almost like someone is orchestrating it. 2. The gag order against Trump specifically prohibits Trump from "directing others to make public statements" on his behalf that violate the gag order.

If Trump directed his acolytes to attack the judge's daughter, it could constitute criminal contempt

May 14 7 tweets 2 min read
1. Trump boasts that he "broke Roe v. Wade" and says that, in the aftermath, "states are working very brilliantly" and creating "very beautiful harmony."

In Lousiana, legislators are insisting that child rape victims carry their pregnancy to term.

🧵 2. After Roe v. Wade was overturned by the Supreme Court, Louisiana imposed a ban on abortion at all stages of pregnancy

The only exception is to protect the life of the mother or if the fetus has a fatal abnormality

Nothing for rape or incest

May 13 14 tweets 4 min read
1. @TheFP and @realchrisrufo are central cogs in a right-wing ecosystem that seeks to tear down anything and anyone who diverges too far from their ideology

It's the real cancel culture

Their recent effort to cancel NPR's CEO has gone completely off the rails

🧵 2. It started with an essay in @TheFP by NPR editor Uri Berliner claiming NPR had abandoned its "open-minded spirit" and is too liberal.

Things escalated quickly

Rufo recently wrote an article suggesting NPR's CEO is actually a CIA operative.

May 9 10 tweets 4 min read
1. @Tesla is a publicly traded company, not @elonmusk's personal piggybank

But Musk has constructed a board of directors, including his brother and many of his closest friends, who are willing to do whatever he wants

And now Musk is using X to convince shareholders to rubberstamp a massive payday that a Delaware judges has already ruled is excessive

🧵 2. A judge found @Tesla's board breached its fiduciary duty to shareholders in 2018 by granting Musk excessive compensation & failing to be transparent

In response, the board is asking shareholders to grant Musk the EXACT SAME PAY PACKAGE RETROACTIVELY

May 6 8 tweets 3 min read
1. @CocaCola, as part of its "racial equality plan," pledged it would donate $0 from its corporate PAC to "candidates who make egregious or inflammatory remarks in the equality and inclusion area."

But in the last year, the @CocaCola has donated $5,000 to @RepMikeCollins Image 2. Last week, students at the University of Mississippi were filmed taunting a black protester. The video showed one student mocking the woman by imitating a monkey.

@RepMikeCollins PRAISED this behavior: "Ole Miss taking care of business"

May 2 8 tweets 3 min read
1. In his 2024 campaign, Trump is pitting native-born Americans against immigrants

Trump tells his crowds that immigrants are going to take their jobs and reduce their wages

New data, however, confirms that these claims are false

Immigrants are saving the US economy

🧵 2. In 2023, the US economy grew at a 2.5% rate, "outpacing all other advanced economies."

The US is on track "to do so again in 2024."

This is only possible because of a substantial increase in immigration.

May 1 5 tweets 2 min read
1. When Trump ran in 2016, he pledged to appoint Supreme Court justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade

And that's exactly what he did.

Now, Trump is describing what abortion policy will look like if he wins in 2024.

We should probably pay attention. Image 2. Trump said if he wins another term in office, it would be up to states whether or not to punish women for receiving an abortion

This isn't a hypothetical

Louisiana legislators introduced a bill that would impose the same criminal punishments on a woman who receives an abortion as a woman who drowns her baby
Apr 29 10 tweets 3 min read
1. Millions of Americans may lose their internet access TOMORROW

Among those impacted will be 90,447 people in @SpeakerJohnson's district alone

It doesn't need to happen. But Johnson is making sure it does

Follow along for details

🧵 2. The last budget signed by Trump included $3.2 billion to help families afford internet access

The program was formalized and expanded by Biden's bipartisan infrastructure law, which was signed into law in November 2021

It's been a smashing success