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Top Stories for February 10:

Mitt Romney breaks from GOP cackle choir, defends Biden response to Chinese spy balloon

The senator from Utah broke ranks with rabid Republicans desperately trying to turn the balloon incident into a scandal to smear Biden, stating, “I believe that the administration, the president, our military and intelligence agencies, acted skillfully and with care.”

VIDEO OF THE DAY: Trump-DeSantis feud explodes as DeSantis finally responds to Trump groomer attack

The disgraced ex-president has been taking swipes at his one-time ally and fellow right-wing blowhard for months now, including amplifying claims of grooming underage girls in the early 2000s. DeSantis, surrounded by a pile of diapers (no joke), finally mustered the, um, we’ll call it courage to respond, issuing a decidedly uncharacteristic, above-the-fray retort. Don’t get lost on the high road, Ron. We know it’s unfamiliar terrain!

Take Action: Tell DeSantis to put ALL the books back in classrooms!

Democrats score major unexpected win

No Lie with Brian Tyler Cohen: Wow.

Florida athletic association will no longer ask high school students about menstruation cycles
In a welcomed reprieve from the Sunshine State’s usual, round-the-clock assault on bodily autonomy and common sense, a Florida high school athletic association announced it will no longer ask female athletes questions about their menstrual cycles after justly facing widespread backlash from parents, educators, and state lawmakers alike. The Florida High School Athletic Association voted 14-2 on Thursday to amend its form to ask students only about their health and will only verify if an athlete is fit to participate. Now then, was that so hard?

Take Action: Allow student loans to be discharged through bankruptcy!

White cop unleashed profane attack during Tyre Nichols’ traffic stop, mishandled evidence, and lied to investigators
Former Memphis police officer Preston Hemphill let loose a string of profane vitriol after he violently pulled Tyre Nichols — without cause — from his vehicle during the Jan. 7 traffic stop that preceded the 26-year-old’s brutal killing by five other officers. Hemphill violated numerous department procedures, recklessly endangered Nichols’ life during the altercation, and lied to investigators afterwards, but somehow, for some reason, he hasn’t been charged yet. Enough already. Arrest. Preston. Hemphill.

Take Action: Tell Congress to cut military spending and fund social programs!

Mike Pence subpoenaed by special counsel probing Trump

Trump’s erstwhile enabler turned MAGA bogeyman was slapped with a subpoena as part of special counsel Jack Smith’s ongoing investigation into the disgraced ex-president’s efforts to steal the 2020 election. The extraordinary scenario of an ex-vice president potentially testifying against his former boss in a criminal investigation comes as Pence considers — against all good reason and the will of American voters — a run for the White House in 2024.

Take Action: Tell Biden to not let the GOP hold our country hostage with the debt ceiling!

Suspect arrested in assault on Democratic Rep. Angie Craig of Minnesota in DC apartment building
26-year-old Kendrick Hamlin was arrested on a charge of simple assault after attacking the third-term congresswoman in her apartment building elevator Thursday morning. Craig poured hot coffee on the erratic assailant and fended off the attack, which authorities do not believe was politically motivated.

Republicans are coming for ALL our rights

Free & Fair Democracy PAC: Abortion rights. Gay marriage. Contraception. Our votes. Even the books our children read in school are under attack by GOP extremists. The Free and Fair Democracy PAC is working overtime to take back the House and elect Democrats who will protect our rights from Trump and his radical cronies. Can you chip in to support their critical mission?

Sen. John Fetterman remains in hospital, undergoing tests
Fetterman, the Pennsylvania Democrat who suffered a stroke during his campaign last year, was hospitalized Wednesday night after feeling lightheaded while attending a Senate Democratic retreat. While tests have shown no evidence of a new stroke or seizure, the first-term senator remained at the hospital for ongoing observation and additional tests. Godspeed, John!

Memphis DA to review all cases previously handled by the five officers charged in Tyre Nichols’ death
The Shelby County District Attorney’s office in Tennessee said Thursday it will review all cases previously handled by the five Memphis police officers charged in the beating and killing of Tyre Nichols. While they’re at it, maybe a wholesale review of the entire department’s approach to “keeping the peace” is in order?

Right-wing agitator James O’Keefe is on paid leave from Project Veritas
The head joker of the right-wing “Project Veritas” lie factory is currently on leave as the board debates whether or not to kick him out of the leadership role. O’Keefe founded the organization but is on the verge of being ousted after a slew of internal lawsuits over sexual harassment, a federal investigation over the purchase and publication of Ashley Biden’s stolen diary, and the inability to produce any kind of content even resembling the truth.


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Required Reading for the Resistance. Actions that make a difference.

Today’s Action: Support HarperCollins workers on strike!

Union members at one of the largest publishing giants, HarperCollins, have been on strike since November for better pay, better family leave policy, stronger union protections, and corporate diversity commitments — now, they’re finally in mediation, but the strike isn’t over yet. The now three-month long ordeal, which began on Nov. 11, has garnered plenty of attention, including a letter signed by 500 authors pledging to not publish with the industry giant until the issue is resolved. However, New York City-based HarperCollins has yet to come forward with an adequate offer for the striking workers, even though the base salary they’re asking for is a modest $50,000 per year — a more than reasonable request, especially when considering the median level pay for an editor in NYC is over $80,000.

The months-long strike has been impactful, as the company has reported a precipitous decline in sales, but HarperCollins still needs to address the workers’ reasonable demands before more serious damage takes root. Authors supporting the 250 striking workers stated in their letter that they “express deep concern about the long-term impact on our books and careers if the strike continues.” The authors reiterated that HarperCollins’ refusal to reach an adequate agreement “hurts [them], [the] creators.”

If HarperCollins cares about their workers, their authors, and their industry, they’ll resolve the strike with an adequate offer as soon as possible. No one should be underpaid in 2023, and nationwide support for unions will make sure of it.

Show your support for UAW Local 2110 striking workers at HarperCollins by spotlighting their reasonable demands, amplifying their message on social media, sending emails to corporate leadership (peopleteam@harpercollins.com and Brian.Murray@harpercollins.com) demanding better treatment of their employees, and inviting your friends and family to join the fight!

PS — Please don’t forget to sign the petition to censure the Republicans who heckled Biden’s speech, and be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.