So long, George
After the third expulsion vote, Rep. George Santos, R-New York, was ousted from Congress on Friday after a House Ethics Committee report showed Santos' misuse of campaign funds and a significant list federal crimes he is charged with. The now-former congressman was sent packing from the lower chamber by a bipartisan vote of 311-114. An expulsion vote requires a heavy lift in the House — a two-thirds vote to pass. This is only the sixth time a congressman has been expelled.
It was actually stunning to see that most of Tennessee's Congressional delegation voted AGAINST expelling Santos, who has been shown time and time again to be one of the most corrupt, defiantly dishonest members of Congress in history. Here they are: Republican Reps. Tim Burchett, Scott DesJarlais, Chuck Fleischmann, Diana Harshbarger, David Kustoff and Andy Ogles.
Voting yes on Santos' expulsion were GOP Rep. Mark Green, John Rose and Democratic Rep. Steve Cohen.
Voters in Santos district now will have the power to elect a new representative. The biggest takeaway from Santos' short-lived tenure in Congress? Buyer beware: It is incumbent on voters to thoroughly research candidates before giving them support.
Pay attention to your elections, people!
Andy Ogles, get a life
In his first year in office, Ogles has introduced a bill that would ban federal agencies from requiring employees and contractors to use the preferred pronouns of their employees. Count that as another in a long list of outrageous culture war legislation. Ironically, it is called the Safeguarding Honest Speech Act.
What in the world is Ogles doing? Seriously, does Congress not have more pressing issues than the pronouns that people choose to use?
"(Senator Ted Cruz) and I are fighting back against the radical Left's latest attempt to force its woke ideology on Americans," Ogles tweeted on X.
Regardless of what you think about pronoun usage, it shouldn't be up to Congress to tell anyone how they should be referred to. Pronouns are a personal choice. Let's leave it at that.
Ogles' time in Congress at this point has been a stark reminder of the consequences of gerrymandering. Recall that Ogles was elected after Republican-led redistricting led to Davidson County (once a Democratic stronghold) getting split into three districts.
Getting lost at MX24
Saturday will be my first MX24! I'm excited to participate in all of the festivities. I'll start my adventure at the Wildflower Tea Shop for some yoga at 8:30 a.m. Maybe I'll see you there.
Here are a couple of other things I'm looking forward to:
› RISE Chattanooga will host a pancake breakfast from 8-10:30 a.m. at Fire Station 1, 218 E. Main St. The breakfast costs $5; all proceeds go to the organization's 2024 free youth music weekend academy.
› The Chattanooga Zoo will host a Pop-up Zoo from 8 a.m.-noon at the Fire Station Triangle Park, 218 E. Main St. Specific animals to be featured will depend on the weather.
› Main Line Tattoo will host "Have a Holly Dolly Christmas!" from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at the shop, 317 E. Main St. The Dolly Parton-themed art show will include a coat drive benefiting the Chattanooga Rescue Mission.
I hope you all enjoy this weekend and go out and support local businesses.
Keeping pedestrians safe
During Tuesday's City Council meeting, 38 residents gave heartfelt pleas to council members to do something after the tragic crash that took the lives of Anna Posso Rodriguez, 41, and her 1-year-old son, Johnathan Delvia.
Also showing up at the meeting was Adolfo Delvia, the brother of Octavio Delvia Paz, the victim of the crash who is still hospitalized.
Delvia gave the council a simple task: Don't let this tragedy be in vain.
"You have the power to honor my family," Delvia said. "You have the power to prevent other accidents."
If the council didn't feel compelled to do something, they sure do now.
And it's always up to the public to stay committed to change. A common phrase said among those who spoke at the meeting was "we knew something bad was gonna happen there."
Do not think that your voice isn't powerful, that council members won't listen to you. They were elected by the people, by you. Every election they have to prove to you that they are worthy of keeping their position.
Don't forget your power.
Liberal Christmas list
Like most folks, I begin to celebrate Christmas when December arrives. I thought it would be fun to share with you my Christmas wish list (so far):
› Trump being found guilty of 80 of his 91 criminal charges. Can't be too greedy.
› Marsha Blackburn's X account being removed. Or she creates a TikTok account that features dance videos only.
› The password to Lt. Gov. Randy McNally's Instagram account.
› A sandwich named after me. Call it the "big LeBron" or the "the LeBron on Pumpernickel."
› Whatever Free Press columnist Ron Hart uses to get riled up (it's anyone's terrible guess).
› The list of Gov. Bill Lee's favorite destination spots. I hear he likes to travel.
› Last but not least, I want more progressive liberal candidates running in Chattanooga and across the state. We have to show this community that the progressive community is alive and well. That starts with more candidates running.