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Leading The Bulwark…
KIMBERLY WEHLE: The footage of the Windsor, Virginia traffic stop is shocking—but not surprising.
🎧 On the Pods… 🎧
Editor’s Note: Charlie is on vacation this week, enjoying the vaxxed life. He’ll return soon. In the meantime, we’ll have guest hosts each day.
On today’s Bulwark podcast, Amanda Carpenter sits in for Charlie Sykes to talk with David Priess about the Worldwide Threat Briefing and why it’s important, plus discuss about 2024 and the GOP’s institutional amnesia.
Plus, 'The Father' reviewed. Is it the best best picture nominee?
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Let’s do something good today. Earlier this month, I shared with you the story of William “Billy” Evans, who died in the line of duty at the U.S. Capitol on the North Barricade on what constitutes the end of Delaware Avenue on the Senate side of the Capitol. I used to park on this street, just across Constitution Avenue. I never knew Billy. I am sure we crossed paths over my years on the hill, as his best friend on the force was a friend of mine, both friends from childhood in Massachusetts.
I told you that when an official GoFundMe was set up, I would tell you and encourage you to donate. Today is that day.
If you don’t watch a lot of C-SPAN or cable news (and good for you), you may have missed today’s ceremony, which was a tear jerker. You can watch the whole thing here, or you can watch this brief excerpt of President Biden’s remarks. (Which you can read here.)
President Biden consoles the widow of Billy Evans, her children, and his mother.
Here’s the statement from Officer Evans’s family:
Billy was the best father, son, brother, and friend anyone could ever hope for. His death has left a gaping void in our lives that will never be filled.
The absolute most important thing in his life was his two children, Logan and Abigail. His most cherished moments were those spent with them -- building with Lego, having lightsaber duels, playing board games, doing arts and crafts, and recently finishing the Harry Potter series. He was always so eager to show how proud he was of everything they did. Any opportunity to spend time with his children brightened both their lives and his. Their dad was their hero long before the tragic events of last week.
While family was always first, Billy had the open, welcoming personality that led him to make friends with anyone he met. He relished bringing people together and making sure everyone felt included and had a good time. The countless testimonials that we have heard from people who knew him capture the warm, funny, and caring person we loved.
Billy was proud to be a United States Capitol Police Officer. His colleagues from the North Barricade were the people he spent so many hours with, and their friendship was one of the best parts of his job. We hold them in our hearts, as we know they acutely share our grief.
Our family is grateful for the immense level of support we have received from USCP in the darkest moment of our lives. The outpouring of support we have received from the law enforcement community from around the country and world both humbles us and serves as a testament to Billy’s sacrifice and dedication to the mission of which he was charged.
We appreciate the level of privacy we have received so far and ask for your continued respect during this difficult time.
No USCP officers died in my five years on the Hill. I saw the pomp and circumstance for Senators like Robert C. Byrd and Ted Kennedy and paid my respects. I wish I could have paid mine for officers like Billy Evans, Brian Sicknick, and Howie Liebengood. But that’s what I can use this space for.
Tributes to good men. Honor them.
Please, if you’re able, donate to the GoFundMe for Officer Evans’s family.
It never ends like it should… Such was the case of Billy Evans’s life cut short. Preparing me to watch today’s heartbreaking memorial service was this item in Defector yesterday by Craig Fehrman. It’s a long-read about a neighbor of his, Iris Clawson, who recently died.
The first thing I saw at the funeral home—before I saw the casket, before I saw Iris tucked in with an owl blanket—was a table holding two small puzzles. At some point, Iris had won them at the nursing home’s bingo game. She’d been saving them for when she could see my kids again.
Dennis came over and hugged me, because I was already crying pretty hard. “Every time I talked to her,” he said, “she would get after me—don’t you lose those kids’ puzzles.” No matter how cross she got, no matter how much she forgot, she would still tell stories about my kids jumping off her stairs and wearing out her ramp, right until the very end.
When I finally pulled it together long enough to thank Dennis for the work he’d done, he hugged me again. “It wasn’t hard,” he said. “It was easy. We wanted to do more, and we couldn’t. That’s the part that sucked.”
Iris Clawson lived a good life, and she died a hard and lonely death. But John and Dennis and Danielle and everyone else who knew her would say the same thing: She gave us more than we gave her.
Iris was born in 1933. She lived a good, long life. Billy Evans was born in 1980, a couple years before me. His life was cut short.
Biden closed his eulogy today quoting Ingersoll:
“When will defies fear, when duty throws the gauntlet down to fate, one honor scorns compromise with death, this is heroism.”
“My prayer for you is that moment of a smile comes before the tear, quicker, than longer.”
Are they really, though?
Funny thing, this.
Josh Hawley paid actors to climb ladders in a commercial, saying he wouldn’t use the elected office of Attorney General to run for higher office. Look:
Weird how that works out.
Seems like J.D. Vance is learning the lesson Hawley taught them. But then again, there’s Josh Mandel.
Never go full Josh Mandel.
Shame to see the guy who inspired my love of politics become such a thoughtless hack and a dipshit to boot.
That’s it for me for today. We’ll see you back tomorrow. Questions, comments, concerns, or deep thoughts? Drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Editorial photos provided by Getty Images. For full credits, please consult the article.