PHOTO: Trump Met Man Who Helped Organize ‘Patriot Caravans’ On January 6

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HOUSEKEEPING: Before we get started, a little programming note — The Uprising is normally going to be free for all readers on Monday and Thursday while the other two issues each week are exclusively for paid subscribers.

Since we skipped Monday this week, I am making part of today’s issue available to everyone. However, today’s top story will only be available for paid subscribers for the first 24 hours. I have to show the subscribers love! If you want to get all of The Uprising, sign up today!

FLORIDA MAN: The Uprising has obtained a photo showing former President Trump meeting with Jeff Brain, CEO of the social media site Clouthub. According to the source who provided the picture, the pair met at Trump’s private club, Mar-a-Lago, on April 21 while Brain was there meeting with investors to seek funding for his site. 

Clouthub was featured on the webpage for the “Wild Protest,” which was one of the main pro-Trump rallies planned for January 6 to protest the certification of Trump’s election loss at the Capitol. Brain’s site hosted multiple pages organizing “Patriot Caravans” to attend the protest. Trump supporters, many of whom attended these rallies, ultimately broke into the Capitol as the certification was taking place leading to violent clashes with law enforcement and multiple deaths. Clouthub also hosts pages dedicated to the QANon conspiracy theory. 

It is not clear how much time Trump spent with Brain or how the tech executive gained access to the club, which is generally only open to members and their guests. Brain and Trump did not respond to requests for comment.

Brain, a longtime conservative activist who has described his site as a refuge from “censorship,” personally participated in the main “Patriot Caravans For 45” group, which included over 4,000 members.

That page has been taken offline, but multiple other local Clouthub pages for January 6 “Patriot Caravans” remain on the site. While Brain specified that the main page was about “organizing transportation” and “discussion of violence” would be deleted, multiple people who used Clouthub to plan for January 6 made explicit references to their combat skills and military equipment.

Uprising subscribers can read the full story here. It will be available to the general public in about 24 hours. 

FALLOUT: On Friday, Republicans blocked a bipartisan proposal to establish a January 6 commission. While the proposal passed the House and was approved by a majority in the Senate with some Republican support, Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell used the filibuster to prevent the proposal from moving forward. 

Despite this setback, Democrats are indicating they might have other plans to investigate the attack. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, appeared on CNN Sunday and suggested Democrats will be meeting this week to discuss strategies for investigating the “violent insurrection,” which he noted left multiple U.S. Capitol Police officers dead and resulted in injuries to “more than 140 officers who were defending the Capitol.” 

“We clearly have to get to the bottom of what happened, why it happened, and how do we prevent something like that from ever happening again,” Jeffries said. “We’re going to re-evaluate what the way forward is in the next few days. We have a caucus meeting on Tuesday. I look forward to hearing from the speaker as well as the members as to what comes next.”

A Democratic Hill source told The Uprising they expect there will be some type of congressional investigation, but the question is what form it takes. One obvious option is a select House committee. Vox has noted multiple Democratic House members have expressed support for this “backup plan” in recent days.

“It’s not a matter of whether or not they will do something,” the Hill source said of a potential investigation. “It’s just a question of what that will look like.”

ON THE TRAIL: Former Ohio state senator Nina Turner, a top Bernie Sanders (I-VT) presidential campaign surrogate, is touting internal polling from her campaign that indicates she’s an overwhelming frontrunner in the Democratic primary for the Buckeye State’s 11th congressional district special election. The poll, which is from Tulchin research, showed Turner with a “commanding lead” of 35 percent over her top rival, Cuyahoga County Democratic Party Chair Shontel Brown. 

The race to replace Marcia Fudge, who left the seat to become President Biden’s secretary of Housing and Urban Development, has been widely seen as an early test for the so-called “Sanders wing” of the Democratic Party. Turner has also demonstrated a wide lead in fundraising. Brown did not immediately respond to requests for comment. 

Due to extremely favorable district lines, the Democratic primary, which is set for August 3, is likely to be decisive. 

Last month, The Uprising interviewed Turner about the race and her thoughts about the progressive wing’s relationship with President Biden. You can read that story here

STANDOFF: Lawmakers in Texas are feuding over a Republican bill that would make it harder to vote with a slew of new restrictions including bans on drive-through and 24 hour voting. Democrats blocked the bill by staging a dramatic walkout late Sunday night. 

Since then, Republicans, who control both houses of the state legislature, have vowed to revive the bill in the upcoming special session. The New York Times has a great rundown of the fight, which has included Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott threatening to withhold pay from lawmakers and one Democrat calling the battle “the Alamo.”

GOTHAM: Drama continues to swirl around Democrat Dianne Morales’ mayoral campaign in New York City. On Tuesday morning, the “Mayorales Union,” a group of her staffers, released a new statement outlining their grievances with the candidate. 

The union has stopped work on the campaign and led protest marches against Morales. Their demands include the reinstatement of four fired campaign staffers. Morales has accused the fired staffers of essentially plotting a takeover of her mayoral bid. 

TODAY’S FACT: Usually, I try to include a “fun fact” in these newsletters, but this one is a bit different.

Today is the anniversary of the clearing of Lafayette Square when law enforcement — including Secret Service, U.S. Park Police, local D.C. police, and military police troops — used tear gas and pepper spray to push Black Lives Matter protesters from the park, which is across from the White House. After the area was cleared, then-President Trump crossed the park for a photo opportunity at St. John’s Church, which was damaged by protesters earlier that week. 

Officials and some conservative pundits initially denied tear gas was used on the protesters. Days after the incident, Park Police officials ultimately admitted tear gas was used. And last Friday, attorneys for Washington D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department admitted in a federal court hearing that tear gas and other irritants were used.  

A company that issues pro-Trump memorabilia has minted a coin commemorating Trump’s clearing of the square. 

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