Politics Bass addresses past remarks praising Scientology

20:50  01 august  2020
20:50  01 august  2020 Source:   politico.com

The (Unspoken) Reason the Left Now Wants Bass for VP

  The (Unspoken) Reason the Left Now Wants Bass for VP Last week, in the race for the Democratic vice presidential nomination, the progressive activist wing appeared to make a sudden shift in its support: away from Sen. Elizabeth Warren and toward Rep. Karen Bass. On Wednesday, Markos Moulitsas penned a Daily Kos post that was explicit about making that shift. United Farmworkers founder Dolores Huerta told the progressive publication Payday Report that, despite her support of Sen. Kamala Harris in the presidential primary, Democrats should “pray” that Joe Biden picks Bass because “I always think of the Bernie Bros and Bernie Sisters, and [Bass] would bring them to the table and the campaign.

Rep. Karen Bass, a top-tier contender to be Joe Biden’s running mate, on Saturday sought to clarify remarks she made in 2010 praising the Church of Scientology.

Karen Bass wearing glasses: Rep. Karen Bass. © Kevin Dietsch/Pool via AP Rep. Karen Bass.

Video emerged on Friday of the California Democrat speaking at a ceremony for a renovated Scientology church in Los Angeles when she served in the state’s General Assembly. The Daily Caller first reported the video’s existence.

In her remarks, Bass called on treating humans with respect and fighting oppression, but also spoke highly of the controversial group and its founder, L. Ron Hubbard.

'Building bridges': How Bass became a leading VP contender

  'Building bridges': How Bass became a leading VP contender SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California's leaders were deadlocked and on the verge of financial catastrophe in 2008. Five negotiators, including Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, couldn't agree on a budget that would guide the nation's most populous state through the Great Recession. Enter Karen Bass, who became Assembly speaker that May, the first Black woman to hold the role. She shifted the tone of the talks, helping the group find common ground.“When Karen came into the Big 5, everything changed," said Mike Villines, then the Republican Assembly leader. “We started to make little progress on little things, and it led to bigger progress.

“The Church of Scientology, I know, has made a difference, because your creed is a universal creed and one that speaks to all people everywhere,” Bass said before an audience of some 6,000 attendees. “That is why the words are exciting of your Founder L. Ron Hubbard, in the creed of the Church of Scientology: That all people of whatever race, color or creed are created with equal rights.”

Bass said in a statement she was trying to find an “area of agreement” with the church, which has faced allegations from former members of abuse, human trafficking and intimidation.

“Back in 2010, I attended the event knowing I was going to address a group of people with beliefs very different than my own, and spoke briefly about things I think most of us agree with, and on those things — respect for different views, equality, and fighting oppression — my views have not changed,” Bass tweeted. “Since then, published first-hand accounts in books, interviews and documentaries have exposed this group.”

Karen Bass, on Biden VP shortlist, scrambles to explain remarks on Castro, Scientology

  Karen Bass, on Biden VP shortlist, scrambles to explain remarks on Castro, Scientology Rep. Karen Bass, D-Caif., who has emerged as a contender for presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s running mate, is scrambling to explain past comments in regard to the Cuban Castro regime and the Church of Scientology. © Provided by FOX News Rep. Karen Bass, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, delivers remarks on removing confederate statues. Bass, who is widely reported to be on Biden’s shortlist, responded Saturday to recently-emerged video that showed her speaking at a Church of Scientology opening in 2010. The organization has been accused of acting like a cult.

While Bass did not say in her statement what she thinks about the church, she mentioned that “everyone is now aware” of the allegations against it. The Congressional Black Caucus chair also stated that she’s not a Scientologist, underscoring that she worships at a Baptist church in Los Angeles.

Bass’s record has increasingly come under scrutiny as she has moved toward the top of presumptive Democratic nominee Biden's vice presidential short list after lobbying by fellow House Democrats.

She has also come under fire from President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign after The Atlantic reported Friday that Bass worked in Cuba in the 1970s with a group aligned with Fidel Castro’s government.

“She was always pro-Castro & later mourned his death,” Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh tweeted Saturday. “Whether Biden picks her or not, he's written off Cuban-American voters just by considering her.”

2020 Election: Top Biden VP contenders face sexist tropes, intense scrutiny in final stretch

  2020 Election: Top Biden VP contenders face sexist tropes, intense scrutiny in final stretch Joe Biden's decision on his vice presidential running mate is drawing closer by the day, and the tensions over his pick spilled into public view this past week, as the women who are his top contenders navigate sexist tropes about their ambition and intense scrutiny of their pasts.For many months as Biden considered nearly a dozen women for the ticket, California Sen. Kamala Harris seemed like the most natural fit because of her resume, her visibility supporting the Black Lives Matter protests, and her championing of legislation to curb police brutality.

On a call organized by the Trump campaign, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) ripped Bass for “showing a stunning amount of interest in the Cuban Revolution," according to the Palm Beach Post.

“She will be the highest ranking Castro sympathizer in the United States government,” Rubio said about Bass if she’s selected to be Biden’s running mate.

Bass has sought to address the Cuban controversy in recent media appearances.

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Bass honored US Communist Party leader in unsurfaced remarks .
Rep. Karen Bass (D) inserted remarks into the congressional record in 2017 honoring a member of the Communist Party USA, the latest revelation surrounding the California lawmaker as she emerges as a top contender to be Joe Biden's running mate.In the remarks, Bass praised Oneil Marion Cannon as a "friend and mentor" and a powerful mover and shaker in progressive politics."As part of the [Independent Progressive Party], he used economic power to force employers to hire Black and Mexican American workers, using the slogan 'don't bank or buy where you can't work.

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