Sanders’ clash with liberal think tank highlights divides in Democratic Party

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 23:00 - [CET]

The president of a liberal think tank responded to criticism from Sen. Bernie Sanders on Monday, the latest development in the biting back-and-forth between the progressive presidential candidate and an organization with ties to Hillary Clinton and the Democratic establishment.

The Vermont lawmaker on Saturday sent a letter to the board of the Center for American Progress and CAP Action Fund rebuking the think tank for playing what he called a “destructive role” in the “critical mission to defeat Donald Trump,” The New York Times first reported. Sanders referenced an article and video published on the website of ThinkProgress — a news site started by CAP — that railed against the senator for his growing personal wealth.

Neera Tanden, president and CEO of CAP, noted in a statement Monday that ThinkProgress is editorially independent of CAP and CAP Action, and called the video attacking Sanders “overly harsh.”

“We believe the content of the ThinkProgress video critiquing Sen. Sanders is overly harsh and does not reflect our approach to a constructive debate of the issues,” Tanden said.

The clash represents a deeper tension within the Democratic Party as 18 candidates vie for the chance to take on President Donald Trump in the 2020 election. As a number of progressive contenders threaten to pull the party farther left — a charge led by Sanders, who’s currently polling as the frontrunner among those in the race — more-centrist Democrats worry that the liberal shift could harm their chances in the general election and challenge the party leadership’s control on the nomination process.

“This counterproductive negative campaigning needs to stop,” Sanders wrote in the letter. “The Democratic primary must be a campaign of ideas, not of bad faith smears. Please help play a constructive role in the effort to defeat Donald Trump.”

Sanders accused CAP of publishing content that “dishonestly attacked me for hypocrisy in my efforts to address income inequality in America.” ThinkProgress slammed the senator for not yet releasing his tax returns and called his millionaire status, earned in recent years from book royalties, “off-brand and embarrassing.”

ThinkProgress has also published content attacking Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), posts that Sanders said belittled progressive ideals.

Tanden was a close adviser to Clinton during her 2016 campaign and has been criticized by Sanders supporters for helping stifle progressive activists, who complain that the Democratic Party’s leadership orchestrated the nomination process and are beholden to corporate donors.

CAP was founded in 2003 by John Podesta, who served as chairman of Clinton’s 2016 campaign and chief of staff to her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

Leading Democrats have worked to reach out to Sanders supporters in the wake of Trump’s 2016 victory, though the senator’s letter illustrates the ease at which the fragile efforts toward party unity might be hindered.

“I will be informing my grassroots supporters of the foregoing concerns that I have about the role CAP is playing,” Sanders wrote. “Should your actions evolve in the coming months, I am happy to reconsider what kind of partnership we can have.”

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Chinese woman charged in security breach at Mar-a-Lago is denied bail

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:54 - [CET]

This story is being published by POLITICO as part of a content partnership with the South China Morning Post. It originally appeared on scmp.com on April 16, 2019.

The Chinese woman accused of lying her way into U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort was denied bail on Monday in a south Florida federal court.

Zhang Yujing, 33, was charged with lying to federal officers and gaining access to a restricted area after she entered Mar-a-Lago on March 30, having told Secret Service agents she was there to use the pool, before telling reception staff she was there to attend a function and mingle with members of the Trump family, according to a criminal complaint.

Zhang was found to be carrying multiple phones, a laptop and a thumb drive that preliminary investigations suggested contained malware. A search of her hotel room found over $7,500 in cash, multiple SIM cards and a signal detector used for finding hidden cameras.

She has not been charged with espionage, though assistant US Attorney Rolando Garcia said on Monday it was “possible” that the US government would bring more charges against Zhang.

In a federal courtroom in West Palm Beach, Magistrate Judge William Matthewman noted that there was no extradition agreement between China and the US, and that Zhang, who lives and works in Shanghai, had no family or ties to the US. There was a serious risk of flight, said Matthewman, adding that no bail conditions existed that could reasonably assure Zhang’s presence at trial.

Zhang’s charges were of a serious nature, said Matthewman. While stressing that Zhang was innocent until proven otherwise, he said it appeared to the court that she was “up to something nefarious” when she allegedly tried to gain unlawful access to Mar-a-Lago.

Zhang, who addressed the judge in Chinese but at one point said in proficient English that she did not understand a certain remark made by the prosecution, has pleaded not guilty to both the charges against her. She could face up to six years in prison and over $250,000 in fines if she is found guilty.

Wearing dark blue prison garb, her hands and feet shackled, Zhang looked down at handwritten notes as Matthewman’s decision on bail was relayed to her through a court interpreter on Monday.

Prior to the verdict, public defender Kristy Militello had called for bail on a $250,000 bond, which Zhang’s father, identified only as S. Zhang, had agreed to guarantee.

Documents filed by the defence during a court appearance last week indicate Zhang was born in Shanghai, where, according to Militello, she went to college at Shanghai University and where she currently owns a home.

Court documents also indicate that Zhang has entered the US at least six times since 2013, arriving at various ports including New York, Seattle and San Francisco. Since being charged, her 10-year B1/B2 visa has been revoked – meaning that, had she been granted bail, she could have faced immediate immigration detention.

Zhang, who spent her 33rd birthday in detention, was eager to “clear her name” so she could continue her career as a consultant in the investment and finance industry, Militello told the court. The “sad fact of this case”, she said, was that, had there been an interpreter on the scene when Zhang was talking to the Secret Service agents who let her in, then “we wouldn’t be here today.”

Secret Service agents let Zhang, who said she was visiting the pool, through the first line of security under the belief that she was a relation of a guest inside who shared the same surname, the criminal complaint said.

It was only when she told reception staff that she was actually at Mar-a-Lago to attend a “United Nations Friendship Event” that officers were alerted and she was placed under arrest, according to an affidavit by Secret Service agent Samuel Ivanovich.

A preliminary analysis of a thumb-drive found in her possession suggested it contained malware, with Ivanovich testifying last week that, when another agent put Zhang’s thumb-drive into his computer, it immediately began to install files. The agent had to halt the analysis to stop further corruption of his computer, Ivanovich said.

Yet further investigations of the device did not lead to the same results, Garcia said on Monday, indicating the possibility of a “false positive” about the existence of malware. While she was at Mar-a-Lago’s reception desk, Zhang was “within arms’ reach” of resort computers, said Garcia.

Zhang’s defence has argued that her sole motivation for visiting Mar-a-Lago on March 30 was to attend a “Safari Night” function at which Trump’s sister, Elizabeth Trump Grau, was scheduled to attend. That event had been cancelled days before as scrutiny grew over one of its promoters, Cindy Yang, the massage parlour entrepreneur who ran a business advertising access to prominent US politicians for Chinese clients.

Zhang’s lawyers submitted a receipt last week indicating a payment she made in February of around $20,000, which they claimed to have been made to Charles Lee, the event bundler who was also advertising the Mar-a-Lago event to Chinese clients.

Garcia said on Monday that communications between Zhang and Lee in the Chinese messaging app WeChat days before she left Shanghai for the US indicated that she was aware the event had been cancelled.

The March 30 incident led to a flurry of calls from senior US Democrats for an FBI investigation into the strength of security procedures at Mar-a-Lago, where Secret Service staff sometimes defer to resort staff on matters of guest admission. Trump, who called the security breach “a fluke situation”, was visiting the resort that weekend but golfing nearby at the time Zhang was apprehended.

Passing down his decision on pre-trial detention on Monday, Judge Matthewman said he was not taking into consideration “any political issues that may be swirling around this case."

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Pulitzers honor investigations into Trump’s ‘tax dodges’ and hush money payments

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:46 - [CET]

Investigations into President Donald Trump’s “tax dodges” and hush money payments before the 2016 election were honored Monday with the Pulitzer Prize.

The New York Times’ David Barstow, Susanne Craig and Russ Buettner won the Explanatory Reporting award for an 18-month investigation that found Trump participated in “dubious tax schemes” and “outright fraud” as a real estate developer in the 1990s.

The staff of The Wall Street Journal won the National Reporting prize for its dogged reporting on secret payments made late in the 2016 election to adult-film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal over affairs they alleged they had with Trump. The Journal revealed that Trump played “a central role” in the payoffs, which also involved his former personal attorney Michael Cohen and the National Enquirer’s parent company, American Media Inc.

Mass shootings and gun violence were the focus of reporting honored by the Pulitzer Board.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel won the coveted Public Service award for reporting on the failings of law enforcement and school officials before and after the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. Pulitzer Prize administrator Dana Canedy also praised the work of The Eagle Eye, the Parkland student newspaper, which produced obituaries of 17 classmates and coaches.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette won for Breaking News Reporting for its “immersive, compassionate coverage” of the shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue.

The Associated Press’ Maggie Michael, Maad al-Zikry and Nariman El-Mofty, and the staff of Reuters each won a Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. The AP was also honored for its coverage of atrocities in Yemen, and Reuters for its reporting on a massacre in Myanmar, where two Reuters journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, remain imprisoned after being convicted of violating the country’s secrets act.

Coverage of attacks on journalists factored into other aspects of this year’s Pulitzers. The Post was a finalist in the Public Service category for its “commanding and courageous coverage” of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi journalist who was a Post contributor. The Pulitzer Board also awarded a special citation to the staff of the Capital Gazette of Annapolis, Md., where five employees were shot and killed last June.

The Los Angeles Times’ Harriet Ryan, Matt Hamilton and Paul Pringle won the Investigative Reporting prize for their reporting on a University of Southern California physician accused of abusing patients. And The Advocate of Baton Rouge, La., was honored in Local Reporting for its “Tilting the Scales” series, a “damning portrayal of the state’s discriminatory conviction system.”

Other winners included ProPublica’s Hannah Dreier (Feature Writing), the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Tony Messenger (Commentary), The Washington Post’s Carlos Lozada (Criticism), The New York Times’ Brent Staples (Editorial Writing), freelancer Darrin Bell (Editorial Cartooning), The Washington Post’s Lorenzo Tugnoli (Feature Photography) and the staff of Reuters (Breaking News Photography).

Marty Baron, The Post’s executive editor, praised Lozada on Monday as “the interpreter we need” as “the frenzied presidency of Donald Trump has upended countless norms of political and national life” and amid “clashing ideas and agendas.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Democrats: Trump's Migrant Transfer Plan 'Bizarre and Unlawful'

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:45 - [CET]
Key Democratic lawmakers on Monday accused the Trump administration of "a bizarre and unlawful attempt to score political points" with a possible plan to send undocumented immigrants detained at the U.S.-Mexican border to congressional districts represented by Democrats. Congressmen Jerrold Nadler, Elijah Cummings and Bennie Thompson, all chairmen of House of Representatives committees investigating President Donald Trump's administration, demanded documents and communications about the plan to move migrants from the border to hundreds of communities throughout the U.S. In opposition to Trump, local officials far from the border across the U.S. have declared their jurisdictions as sanctuary cities for migrants and refused to help federal officials track down the immigrants so they can be deported. Trump suggested again Monday he wants to move the immigrants detained at the border to the sanctuary cities and states after saying over the weekend he wants them "to take care of the Illegal Immigrants -- and this includes Gang Members, Drug Dealers, Human Traffickers, and Criminals of all shapes, sizes and kinds." The lawmakers said, "It is shocking that the president and senior administration officials are even considering manipulating release decisions for purely political reasons." The government's Department of Homeland Security has said that Congress has not appropriated any money to transport the migrants from the border to far-flung sanctuary cities, while the Immigration and Custom Enforcement agency has called the idea an "unnecessary operational burden." But Trump, who is often at odds with Democratic lawmakers over funding to control the 100,000-a-month surge of migrants at the border, revived the idea in recent days, claiming that opposition Democrats who favor open borders ought to approve of accepting the migrants into their communities. Some local Democratic officials have said the migrants, mostly from Central America, are welcome in their cities, while other party officials have claimed that Trump has no legal right to single out specific communities for an influx of migrants. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told the "Fox News Sunday" show, "We certainly are looking at all options as long as Democrats refuse to acknowledge the crisis at the border." Trump, in one of several Twitter comments on border security in recent days, said, "The USA has the absolute legal right to have apprehended illegal immigrants transferred to Sanctuary Cities. We hereby demand that they be taken care of at the highest level, especially by the State of California, which is well known (for) its poor management & high taxes!" Washington state Governor Jay Inslee told NBC's "Meet The Press" that his state welcomes people who are awaiting their asylum hearings. "You can't threaten somebody with something they're not afraid of. And we are not afraid of diversity in the state of Washington," Inslee said. He criticized what he called immigration solutions based on "trolling on the internet" and instead promoted a system to process more asylum claims, a path to citizenship for those already living in the United States who came to the country illegally, and having an overall "acceptance of refugees because we're a humane nation." The U.S. now houses thousands of migrants at the border but is running out of beds and instead is releasing new arrivals into the U.S. on their promise to appear at asylum hearings that might not occur for two years. Press secretary Sanders said, "Nobody thinks this is the ideal solution," sending migrants to sanctuary cities. But she said mayors of cities "who want this ... should be looking to help" Trump resolve the crisis at the border. She accused Congress of wanting to spend "all of its time investigating the president" rather than dealing with the immigration turmoil. Trump tweeted, "So interesting to see the Mayor of Oakland and other Sanctuary Cities NOT WANT our currently 'detained immigrants' after release due to the ridiculous court ordered 20 day rule. If they don’t want to serve our Nation by taking care of them, why should other cities & towns?" Trump was referring to a court ruling prohibiting the U.S. from detaining migrant minors, those under 18 years old, for more than 20 days, before being required to release them to relatives in the U.S. or other caregivers. Oakland Mayor Libby Shaaf responded to Trump with a tweet saying, "It's time to stop fanning hate and division." "I've been consistent and clear: Oakland welcomes all, no matter where you came from or how you got here," she said. A key Republican lawmaker, Sen. Lindsey Graham, told another Fox News show, "Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo," that after the current two-week congressional recess ends, he would introduce legislation that would authorize the detention of children beyond 20 days, "toughen up our asylum standards," and allow migrant children to be returned to Central American countries, which is not now allowed once they have entered the United States. "We're never going to change this with troops and walls at the border," Graham said of the U.S. immigration crisis. "Doing what we're doing is not working." He added, "If you get one foot into the United States," migrants can seek asylum. "The word is out that if you come with a minor, you're never going to get deported. We need to change that narrative. We need troops at the border. We need a law. But these (U.S.) laws are insane."
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Ralph Northam cancels appearance over blackface protesters

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:32 - [CET]

BURKE, Va. — Virginia's governor pulled out of an event where he would have faced protesters for wearing blackface in the 1980s.

The Washington Post reported that Gov. Ralph Northam cited safety concerns for canceling his appearance at a Sunday fundraiser for a Democratic state senator in northern Virginia.

The ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

NRA sues longtime ad agency over requests for bill details

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:28 - [CET]

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The National Rifle Association has sued its longtime advertising agency, accusing the company that has helped shape its Second Amendment advocacy of withholding crucial financial details in its billing documents.

The lawsuit filed Friday in Alexandria, Virginia, says Oklahoma City-based Ackerman McQueen is contractually bound to ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Criminal complaint details case against Julian Assange

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:14 - [CET]
Investigators relied on his and Chelsea Manning’s online chats.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Pulitzers given to Aretha Franklin, author Richard Powers

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:01 - [CET]

NEW YORK (AP) - Aretha Franklin received an honorary Pulitzer Prize on Monday, as judges praised the late icon "for her indelible contribution to American music and culture." Competitive Pulitzers were awarded to books about two other giants of American history: Frederick Douglass and Alain Locke.

David W. Blight's 900-page ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Jay Inslee, 2020 Democrat, raises $2 million in first quarter

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 22:00 - [CET]

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee raised more than $2.25 million in the month since announcing his presidential run, his campaign announced Monday.

His seven-figure total for the first quarter provided a bright spot for Mr. Inslee, who is running on an agenda singularly focused on climate change and who barely registers ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

4 indicted in probe of "drive-through" drug market off I-78

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:51 - [CET]

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Three Newark men and another from Kearny have been indicted in connection with an eight-month investigation into what authorities call a "drive-through" drug market that catered to customers traveling on Interstate 78 through Newark.

The state attorney general's office said Monday that law enforcement seized 13 ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Donald Trump, Jimmy Carter talk China, 'numerous other topics'

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:46 - [CET]

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump spoke over the weekend with former President Jimmy Carter about his China policies and "numerous other topics."

White House spokesman Hogan Gidley says Trump reached out to Carter on Saturday after the former president wrote him "a beautiful letter" about ongoing trade negotiations between the ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump says he ‘has always liked’ Jimmy Carter. He previously called him the worst president in U.S. history.

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:30 - [CET]
The president changed his tune on Carter after a weekend phone call during which they discussed U.S. relations with China.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Biden Spanish-language ad becomes ‘hot mess’

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:27 - [CET]

In the run-up to his expected presidential campaign announcement, former Vice President Joe Biden’s supporters cut a Spanish-language ad in South Florida over the weekend emphasizing healthcare, education and his biography.

The Saturday film shoot was a hushed affair — paid local actors signed non-disclosure agreements promising not to discuss the job. But some posted images on social media of the Fort Lauderdale commercial anyway, prompting a flurry of emails warning of legal exposure and requesting that those involved delete any images of the shoot and not talk to the media about it.

“We are in a hot mess with campaign and client because someone leaked footage,” read a Monday email to the actors obtained by POLITICO. The email surmised that the footage was from “some moms taking photo/video of their kids while they were being filmed.”

Biden’s spokesman, Bill Russo, said his team “wouldn’t comment on that” when asked Monday about the commercial shoot. It was unclear who was behind the commercial, whether it was Biden, his American Possibilities political committee or another group.

Biden is expected to announce after Easter Sunday — offers have been accepted by prospective campaign staffers and a state chairman is being lined up. But supporters caution that nothing is final until the former vice president gives the final word.

The South Florida commercial shoot is the second tied to Biden in as many weeks: On April 4, Biden was spotted filming in front of his childhood home in Scranton, Pa.

The Spanish-language ad shot in Florida indicates how seriously Biden would court the growing Latino vote, which is crucial in early state Nevada on Feb. 20 as well as California, which has moved its primary up to March 3. Florida’s primary is not scheduled until March 17, but it’s the biggest swing state in the nation with a Hispanic voting population that exceeds 16 percent.

One source familiar with the South Florida shoot on Saturday said the commercial used a diverse array of local Spanish-language actors. There was no script, but actors read words in Spanish such as “faith” and “opportunity” while standing in front of a green screen. The ad also included images of Hillary Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, and President Trump, according to the source, adding that the ad included a discussion about healthcare and education.

The Monday email sent to the South Florida actors included a message from a group acting as a conduit between the talent agency and what it called “the campaign and client.”

That message complained that “photos/videos were leaked from our political shoot on Saturday. This is a VERY SERIOUS matter, as to why we had everyone sign an NDA agreement.”

The words “VERY SERIOUS” were highlighted in red font along with a request that anyone “PLEASE DELETE” any images they took onset and a request that people “DO NOT COMMENT” if they’re contacted by the press.

“If found photos or videos were posted after signing the NDA,” the email warned, “legal action can occur.”

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Julián Castro raises $1.1 million in first quarter

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:19 - [CET]

Julián Castro’s presidential campaign brought in $1.1 million in the first quarter of the year, the campaign announced Monday.

The fundraising sum puts Castro, the former San Antonio mayor and Obama Cabinet secretary, at the bottom of the pack of Democratic presidential candidates. Several candidates announced earlier this year that they raised over $1 million in the first 24 or 48 hours of their campaigns.

Castro launched an exploratory committee late last year before formally joining the race for the White House in January. His campaign said it has raised “roughly” $2 million from 50,000 unique donors since Castro formed an exploratory committee in mid-December. The average contribution was $32.

The campaign said it finished the quarter with $677,000 cash on hand.

Despite his low first-quarter haul — businessman Andrew Yang outraised Castro in the first quarter by more than half a million dollars — Castro's campaign insists it has momentum going forward, raising more than $572,000 so far in April on the heels of a CNN town hall last week and a rally countering President Donald Trump’s recent fundraising stop in San Antonio. Castro's campaign has invested heavily in digital fundraising while adding key staff since the first quarter ended.

“We’re just getting started and are rapidly building momentum. We met our internal goals for the first quarter, and in the first two weeks of April have smashed our fundraising goal for the month,” campaign manager Maya Rupert said in a statement. “We’re building a sustainable, impactful campaign for the long term that respects its staff, volunteers and supporters.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) leads the Democratic primary field in first-quarter fundraising with $18.2 million, followed by Sen. Kamala Harris’ (Calif.) $12 million, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s (Texas) $9.4 million and South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s $7 million.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Inslee raised $2.25 million in first quarter of presidential campaign

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:10 - [CET]

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee raised $2.25 million for his presidential campaign in the first quarter after jumping into the race on March 1, his campaign told POLITICO.

The total comes in behind most of Inslee's rivals in the 2020 Democratic primary. But Inslee's campaign argued that he got into the race later than many of his competitors and has raised money at a faster clip since then.

“This first-month fundraising shows strong grassroots momentum for Gov. Inslee’s message of defeating climate change,” Inslee campaign manager Ainsling Kerins said. “Jay Inslee is the only 2020 candidate who will make climate change the top priority. That clear message allowed Gov. Inslee’s upstart campaign to raise money at a faster clip than many better-known candidates. We will continue to build momentum, as voters look for a candidate who will prioritize climate change and who has the executive experience to defeat Trump and advance a progressive agenda in the White House.”

Inslee's campaign did not release its average contribution or the number of people who have donated to the governor so far. The campaign did say 75 percent of its contributions were $25 or less and 95 percent of them were under $100. Inslee has met one of the grassroots fundraising criteria laid out by the Democratic National Committee for participation in the first round of primary debates this summer, taking in donations from at least 200 people in 20 different states.

Sen. Bernie Sanders has led the way in fundraising in the Democratic primary so far, bringing in over $18 million in the first quarter. Sen. Kamala Harris announced raising $12 million. All of the candidates have to file detailed campaign finance reports with the Federal Election Commission by the end of Monday.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Pelosi calls Trump’s tweet aimed at Omar ‘beneath the dignity of the Oval Office’

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:10 - [CET]
During an appearance in London, the House speaker said presidents should not use the 9/11 terrorist attacks as a “political tool.”
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump openly courts Minnesota voters, after losing state in 2016

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 21:01 - [CET]

Still sore over losing it in 2016, President Trump openly courted the state of Minnesota ahead of his reelection bid, saying he's allowed industry to tap into natural resources in Superior National Forest and will bolster the steel industry.

"This has been a very special state," Mr. Trump said at ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Judge sends Canadian to US prison for risky tunnel scheme

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:49 - [CET]

DETROIT (AP) - A Canadian cab driver has been sentenced to 16 months in a U.S. prison for sending desperate immigrants through a risky international tunnel under the Detroit River.

Juan Garcia-Jimenez wept and apologized Monday in federal court in Detroit. Besides prison, he was fined $8,680, the amount of ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump had a weekend phone call with Jimmy Carter

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:38 - [CET]

The White House announced Monday that President Donald Trump spoke by phone over the weekend with former President Jimmy Carter after Carter wrote to the president about his trade negotiations with China.

In a statement, the White House praised Carter’s “beautiful letter” and said the pair “had a very good telephone conversation about President Trump's stance on trade with China and numerous other topics.”

“The President has always liked President Carter and First Lady Rosalynn Carter, and extended his best wishes to them on behalf of the American people,” the statement added.

Carter, who last month became the oldest living president, disclosed his talk with Trump during one of the biweekly Sunday school classes he teaches in his hometown of Plains, Ga., according to Atlanta radio station WABE.

Carter oversaw the normalization of U.S.-China relations during his one term as president, and said during an event in January commemorating the 40th anniversary of that milestone that he was planning to draft a letter advising Trump to convene a small group of informal “distinguished” advisers on China.

He told Sunday’s congregation that Trump said he felt China was “getting ahead of us,” adding that he agreed with the president.

“And do you know why? I normalized diplomatic relations with China in 1979. Since 1979 do you know how many times China has been at war with anybody? None. And we have stayed at war,” Carter argued.

He said that China had been able to invest in infrastructure and its education system while the U.S. had been focused on waging wars. But he added that “I wasn’t comparing my country adversely to China, only “pointing that out because I happened to get a phone call last night.”

Carter reportedly did not mention whether Trump discussed his ongoing trade war with Beijing, but said Trump was worried about China leapfrogging the U.S. as a world economic superpower, though he said he doesn’t share those concerns.

“I don’t really fear that time, but it bothers President Trump and I don’t know why. I’m not criticizing him — this morning,” he reportedly said, to laughs.

The Democrat, who stays active in his community despite being nearly 95, reportedly said Saturday’s phone call was the first time he’d ever spoken to Trump, despite being present at his inauguration in 2017.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

White Republicans think whites, blacks and Hispanics face about the same amount of discrimination

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:29 - [CET]
Americans overall are increasingly likely to perceive discrimination against Jews.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The Latest: Activists urge nonviolence after video release

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:25 - [CET]

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on the release of a video showing a fatal shooting by police (all times local):

5 p.m.

Civil rights activists in North Carolina are urging a nonviolent response after the release of video footage showing a police officer fatally shooting a man.

A Charlotte-Mecklenburg ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Attorneys for Gregory Craig, former Obama White House counsel, preview defense to dismiss his indictment

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:24 - [CET]
Judge aims for mid-August trial tied to Craig’s Ukraine work, in case spun off from Mueller probe.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Schiff, Nunes sent joint request for Mueller briefing

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:21 - [CET]

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff and top GOP committee member Devin Nunes have briefly united to request a classified briefing from special counsel Robert Mueller and his team on every aspect of their findings.

The two men, who have clashed repeatedly over the Russia probe, similarly requested every scrap of evidence that Mueller collected or produced, "regardless of form and classification."

In a three-page letter sent late last month to Attorney General William Barr, Schiff and Nunes said it's their role on the Intelligence Committee to review and understand any counterintelligence findings that Mueller may have reached — including those related to the Kremlin’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 election and whether any Americans aided the effort, wittingly or unwittingly.

The letter, obtained from an Intelligence Committee source, was sent on March 27 and emerges just three days before Barr is expected to deliver a redacted version of Mueller's findings to Congress. That version of the report is expected to exclude several categories of information, including classified material, evidence related to ongoing investigations and grand jury information.

Schiff and Nunes' letter, however, makes clear there's rare bipartisan unity on the Intelligence Committee to see the information hidden behind those redactions.

The lawmakers want some of the most sensitive work products investigators produce, including "raw reporting" as well as interview notes known as FD-302s, from as early as January 2015 to the present "which relate to any U.S. government contacts with any person formally or informally associated with the Trump campaign.

House Judiciary Committee members have also indicated they'd like Mueller to testify.

Top Republican on the panel Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia urged Democrats to seek a briefing next week — while Congress is in recess — but Democrats said it was likelier to come later, after Barr testifies to the committee in early May.

Nunes has lately slammed Mueller's work as partisan and unreliable.

"The Mueller report, we can just burn it up. It is a partisan document," Nunes said in a Fox News interview on March 24, adding that he had no interest in seeing the report.

Nunes has also been seeking a private audience with Barr to discuss eight criminal referrals he intends to lodge, encouraging prosecutors to investigate the FBI and Justice Department officials who helped launch the Trump-Russia probe in July 2016.

Just one day after Nunes and Schiff signed the letter, Nunes joined Republicans on the Intelligence Committee to call for Schiff to resign as chairman, arguing that his commentary throughout the Mueller probe had damaged his ability to lead the panel.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump to present Tiger Woods with Medal of Freedom

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:16 - [CET]

President Donald Trump announced Monday that he will award Tiger Woods the Presidential Medal of Freedom after his win Sunday at The Masters, the golfer's first major championship win since 2008.

"Spoke to @TigerWoods to congratulate him on the great victory he had in yesterday’s @TheMasters, & to inform him that because of his incredible Success & Comeback in Sports (Golf) and, more importantly, LIFE, I will be presenting him with the PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM!" Trump tweeted.

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is one of the highest civilian awards and is bestowed upon those who have made “especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors."

Woods, considered one of the greatest golf players of all time, last won the Masters in 2005 and his last victory in one of golf's four major championships was at the 2008 U.S. Open. He has 15 major championship wins in his career, second all time behind Jack Nicklaus, who has 18.

Trump is an avid fan of golf, a sport he is known to play regularly, including on frequent trips to the multiple golf properties he owns. The Trump Organization maintains 19 golf properties, including well-known courses at Turnberry, Scotland, West Palm Beach, Florida, and Trump National Doral in Miami.

Trump and Woods, who lives in Florida not far from the president's Mar-a-Lago club, have a friendly relationship and have played golf together in the past. The president, Woods and Nicklaus played together last February at Trump's Jupiter, Florida, course.

The president has presented Medals of Freedom to multiple other athletes, including Roger Staubach and Alan Page, as well as a posthumous award for Babe Ruth.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump suggests deploying flying water tankers for 'horrible' fire at Notre Dame Cathedral

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 20:10 - [CET]

As Paris’ historic Notre Dame Cathedral burned Monday, President Donald Trump tweeted about the “horrible” sight and suggested the French deploy flying water tankers to quell the flames engulfing the iconic church.

“So horrible to watch the massive fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris,” the president wrote on Twitter. “Perhaps flying water tankers could be used to put it out. Must act quickly!”

The Associated Press reported that firefighters responded to a massive blaze in the French capital on Monday as flames and black smoke were seen billowing from the top of the medieval cathedral, one of Paris’ most famous landmarks.

The cause of the fire was unknown, though French media reported it may be linked to renovation work being done in the peak of the church, according to the AP.

When news of the fire broke, Trump was aboard Air Force One en route to Minnesota to visit a truck and equipment company for a roundtable discussion on tax cuts and the U.S. economy. Fox News started airing footage of the burning monument 10 minutes before the plane landed.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Adam Schiff and Devin Nunes: Mueller must provide all evidence regardless of classification: Report

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:46 - [CET]

Reps. Adam B. Schiff and Devin Nunes reportedly came together in March, calling for special counsel Robert Mueller to testify before the intelligence committee and provide them "all materials" obtained during the Russia investigation.

In a letter obtained by The Daily Beast, Mr. Schiff, the Democratic chairman of the House Permanent ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Judge mulls August trial for former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:44 - [CET]

A judge said Monday she’s considering a trial in August for former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig, who was indicted last week on two felony charges stemming from an alleged scheme to mislead the Justice Department about his work for Ukraine as a private attorney.

During Craig’s first appearance before U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson, the defense said it is eager for a quick conclusion to the case, which grew out of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation but is now being handled by federal prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney’s office in Washington.

“We’d like this case resolved as soon as possible,” defense lawyer William Taylor told Jackson during a half-hour hearing in federal court in Washington.

Jackson said a trial this summer is possible, but pretrial legal motions will have to be filed and argued relatively quickly.

“I will try to come up with something that works so that this case is tried in August,” the judge said.

As Jackson wrestled with various dates in August to start a potential trial, Craig nodded emphatically.

However, Taylor made clear that the defense is hoping there won’t be a trial at all. Craig’s lawyers plan to file motions to throw out the case, which claims that Craig made a series of false and misleading statements when his work for Ukraine’s Ministry of Justice came under scrutiny from the U.S. Justice Department’s foreign agents registration office and, later, from Mueller’s team.

“Mr. Craig — as you know, our position is — is entirely innocent,” Taylor said.

The defense’s central argument will be that most of the case against Craig stems from allegations that he failed to disclose information to the Justice Department about his work in connection with a report he and his then-law-firm, Skadden Arps, prepared in 2012 for Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych’s government about the criminal trial of Yanukovuch’s political rival, Yulia Tymoshenko.

Taylor said there’s no affirmative duty under the law to convey “all relevant facts” to the government. He pointed to a 2008 appeals court ruling overturning several convictions against federal official David Safavian, who was prosecuted as part of the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal.

“They have pled a theory that’s been rejected by the circuit,” Taylor said.

Jackson chimed in at that point, saying she did not think the courts have foreclosed all prosecutions for false statements based on “omissions.” She also noted that the indictment does appear to allege some things Craig told investigators were outright false.

“Those…are certainly not misrepresentations and they are certainly not material,” Taylor insisted. He also argued that one of the two false-statement charges in the indictment is defective because the law in question only prohibits false statements in filings with the Justice Department’s foreign-agent office. Craig is alleged to have misled officials during an in-person meeting.

Prosecutor Fernando Campoamor-Sanchez did not immediately respond to the defense claims. He said the prosecution was learning about some of the planned motions for the first time.

Campoamor-Sanchez said he expected the prosecution’s case to take five or six trial days. With jury selection, opening and closing statements, and a possible defense case, the full trial could take about two weeks, he said.

Jackson also told lawyers she’s considering whether a gag order may be appropriate in the case and wants to hear from them within about a week on whether she should do so.

The judge said any such order would apply to “both sides.” She did not mention that statements by President Donald Trump could complicate any effort to rein in comments on the case. After Craig’s indictment, Trump took to Twitter to critique the New York Times and Washington Post for downplaying their stories about the charges.

Craig issued a video statement of his own last week, proclaiming his innocence.

Jackson also resolved a dispute between the parties about Craig’s ability to travel while the case is pending.

Prosecutors said Craig, 74, should have to surrender his passport and get prior approval from the court for foreign travel, but the defense took umbrage at that, saying Craig has been a member of the bar for 45 years and has a sterling reputation.

“There is simply no likelihood, no possibility that Greg Craig is not going to appear for trial in this case,” Taylor said. “I don’t need to go through the consequences to him of this case.”

However, Jackson sided with prosecutors, ordering Craig to turn in his passport and to get permission from the court for any trips abroad. He will be permitted to travel in the U.S. as long has he gives prior notice to the probation office, she said.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump says he will award Tiger Woods the Medal of Freedom

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:43 - [CET]

President Trump on Monday said Tiger Woods' victory at The Masters and comeback story was so impressive that he will give him the Medal of Freedom, the U.S.'s highest decoration for civilians.

The decision, announced on Twitter, will put Mr. Woods in the company of the Apollo 13 crew, singer ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Conservative leadership: Javid and other contenders take to the stage

Reported to us by: BBC POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:42 - [CET]
It's been going on for some time but the unofficial race to succeed Theresa May is now clearly under way.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Lawyers for Trump urge president’s accounting firm not to comply with House subpoena

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:41 - [CET]
A subpoena for tax documents is not “valid or enforceable,” the president’s attorneys said.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The Right Tone May Give Presidential Candidates Final Sway with Voters

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 19:20 - [CET]
“When they go low, we go high,” former first lady Michelle Obama recited as her motto. When it comes to electability, however, that could be bad advice — but not in the way that might be imagined. Research into the voices of political candidates concludes how a contender speaks is critical — and lower pitch is better. “Individuals with lower voices are more likely to win and to win a larger vote share,” says University of Miami Associate Professor Casey Klofstad. “What our experimental data show is that we like candidates with lower voices, largely because they are perceived as stronger and more confident and, to a lesser degree, because they're perceived as older.” This tonal bias may partly explain the under-representation of women in elected office. And with a record number of women vying for the Democratic Party’s nomination for U.S. president, the research is receiving wider scrutiny. Stanford Gregory, emeritus professor of sociology at Kent State University, studied the voice characteristics of the U.S. presidential general election contenders between 1960 and 2000, as well as analyzing the three debates in 2008 between Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain. Gregory noted a tendency for McCain to show dominance in the lower nonverbal frequencies of his voice while Obama finished the debates more strongly. Gregory and his Kent State colleague Will Kalhoff observed a "recency effect," in which potential voters take away more of an impression from the end of debates. Obama had a "rope-a-dope" debating style akin to the boxing techniques of heavyweight legend Muhammed Ali who would hang back from the start of a fight until his opponent exhausted himself and then dominate the end of the match, according to Gregory who concluded the victorious candidate is the one who sets the tone, so to speak. “We found it was the person who changed the least in his lower frequencies compared to the other person, so in effect from the beginning, he would set the lower frequency tone and the other person would adapt to that in the course of debates,” says Gregory. The effect also could be seen in the 2016 Republican primary where President Donald Trump, initially regarded as a longshot, overwhelmed as many as 10 candidates on the debate stage, including former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas. “It was just obvious this is what he did,” states Gregory. As Vox news editor Libby Nelson, also an adjunct professor of public affairs at American University, wrote, looking back on Trump’s primary debates’ performance: Trump would “pick out one or two antagonists during any given debate — always some combination of Bush, Marco Rubio, and Ted Cruz — to try to take down. The point wasn’t to get them to concede a policy point to him, but to establish that Trump was the one who should be allowed to talk.” Some who work on campaigns cast doubt, however, on relying on such research to predict outcomes of races, especially for presidential contests where voters are more likely to more intensively scrutinize candidates. “I'm skeptical as a practitioner of anytime someone comes and says, ‘We have isolated the thing that impacts the results of a campaign’— whether it's yard signs, TV ads, money in politics or how someone talks,” says Matt Dole, who has worked on about 250 local and state campaigns of Republican candidates in Ohio. Dole tells VOA that voices “could have a role” in influencing voters, as might a candidate’s gender, facial characteristics, height, attire and other cosmetic features. Gregory was asked who among the large field of 2020 Democratic hopefuls might best set the advantageous low tone during the party’s upcoming televised debates? Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts “is pretty good at this kind of thing,” Gregory replied, noting he is also curious to see how former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke performs. While Warren’s voice may not be as low as some of her primary race male competitors (or that of Trump), Gregory says what is more important is “the ability to maintain a certain tone and keep it and not alter or fade back on it in the course of the debate or the interview.” Former Pima County, Arizona Democratic Party Chair Don Jorgensen says,“Warren has learned the secret of speaking slower, breaking up her rhythm and finishing on a strong low beat to keep audiences engaged.” Jorgensen also says Warren “employs her slightly breathless tone to indicate urgency and rather than attempting to shout at crowds she effectively forces them to tune in to her.” Effective candidates have learned that speeches and debates “are a form of political performance art, where appearance and tone leave a far stronger impression than the message itself,” Jorgensen tells VOA. Gregory agrees, putting it even more bluntly. “What you say doesn't make any difference,” says Gregory, noting Trump’s 2016 boast:“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose voters.” Gregory says that makes people conclude “You could put anyone up there as long as they had the right kind of frequency insignia.” Klofstad in Miami has a different take on Trump. “I don't think Trump is a good case study in the pitch of the voice mattering,” he says, arguing that when it comes to the current president “it’s more cadence,” pointing to Trump’s ability to hold an audience with extemporaneous remarks at big rallies. Looking at the current pack of Democrats, Gregory contrasts the telegenic O’Rourke (“credibly audacious and articulate when it comes to issues but he’s kind of all over the place”) to lesser known contender Jay Inslee, governor of the state of Washington who focuses on the environmental issue. On an acoustical basis, according to Gregory, Inslee also seems to maintain a single authoritative tone, meaning “he has a pretty good chance.” A cacophony of other candidates is certain to voice skepticism about that.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Progressives call for Democrat leaders to defend Ilhan Omar

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:59 - [CET]

More than 200 progressive groups are circulating a letter demanding members of Congress defend Rep. Ilhan Omar amid the fallout from a President Trump-endorsed video condemning the freshman congresswoman's comments about the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The groups are accusing Democratic leaders of not doing enough to defend Ms. ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump appears to move forward with sanctuary cities plan as backlash intensifies

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:57 - [CET]

President Donald Trump on Monday appeared to announce his administration will move forward with a plan to bus undocumented immigrants to so-called sanctuary cities, “subject” to the Department of Homeland Security.

“Those Illegal Immigrants who can no longer be legally held (Congress must fix the laws and loopholes) will be, subject to Homeland Security, given to Sanctuary Cities and States!” the president declared in a tweet.

Trump’s plan to allow officials to transfer undocumented immigrants into cities that have limited their cooperation with federal immigration agencies was first reported in The Washington Post last week — though the Post reported the idea was last floated in February as retaliation against politicians in largely Democratic strongholds but was shot down by administration officials.

The White House and DHS denied the idea was ever seriously under consideration, but the president revived the idea just a day later, saying in a tweet that he was “strongly considering” the idea.

On Friday, he blamed a court settlement known as the Flores agreement that bars the U.S. from detaining migrant children for more than 20 days and has framed his proposal as calling the bluff of leaders in sanctuary cities. Over the weekend he asserted he has the "absolute legal right" to move forward with his plan.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed Sunday the administration was “looking to see if there are options that make” Trump’s proposal legally viable, and described it as “an option on the table” among other immigration enforcement measures. She argued that sanctuary cities who say their arms are open to immigrants will help ease the burden of communities along the border swamped by a surge in migrants.

Democratic lawmakers and leaders of sanctuary cities quickly responded to Trump's plan over the weekend, decrying the White House's use of migrants as "pawns" and demonizing rhetoric, occasionally calling the idea a waste of resources but largely affirming they would welcome the immigrants.

The proposal comes amid a major leadership shakeup at DHS as Trump considers an extensive immigration crackdown. In the span of a few days last week, Trump pulled the nomination of his pick to lead Immigration and Customs Enforcement, DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and deputy secretary Claire Grady resigned, and the head of the Secret Service left the administration. Stephen Miller, an adviser to Trump and an immigration hardliner, has pushed for more extensive changes at the agency, and an even larger clamp down on immigration.

In that time, Trump has also threatened to close the U.S.-Mexico border, an idea he later backed off of after widespread backlash over the potential economic effects. He has also reportedly sought to reinstate his administration’s controversial family separation policy, though he denied doing so. His administration has also considered targeting countries whose citizens most frequently overstay their visas in the U.S.

The New York Times reported Sunday that Trump revived the idea at least “in part” to distract from the impending release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s findings from the Russia investigation. Trump’s tweet Monday came moments after the Justice Department announced when the redacted version of the report would be made public.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Eric Swalwell promises 'Cabinet of Republicans and Democrats' if he wins presidency

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:55 - [CET]

Rep. Eric Swalwell officially kicked off his candidacy for president Sunday, adding he would assemble a "team of rivals" in his presidential Cabinet if he should win the 2020 election.

"I'm the son of two Republicans. I married a Hoosier, who grew up in Pence country. I've worked with Republicans ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump lawyer attacks Democrats' bid for tax returns

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:48 - [CET]

A lawyer for President Donald Trump renewed his criticism of House Democrats' bid to seize the president's tax returns, telling the Treasury Department that they've offered no good reason to obtain the documents.

William Consovoy attacked Democrats’ arguments that they need Trump’s confidential filings so they can vet the IRS’s audits of the president.

“No one actually believes this,” Consovoy wrote Brent McIntosh, general counsel at Treasury.

What’s more, he said, it’s not Congress’s job to second-guess the agency’s examinations of individual taxpayers.

“Congress has no constitutional authority to act like a junior-varsity IRS, rerunning individual examinations or flyspecking the agency’s calculations,” Consovoy wrote.

The letter comes days after House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) set a new April 23 deadline for the administration to hand over the filings.

A Neal spokesperson declined today to comment.

Neal is citing a nearly century-old law that allows the heads of Congress’s tax committees to examine anyone’s returns. Democrats are trying to use the law to obtain Trump’s returns, which he has steadfastly refused to release despite a decades-old tradition of presidents and White House contenders voluntarily releasing their filings.

Neal, who is demanding six year’s worth of Trump’s personal and some of his business returns, says he needs them to examine how rigorously the IRS is implementing its longstanding policy of audting every president.

Republicans scoff at that, saying Democrats just want to search Trump’s filings for revelations they can use to embarrass him.

Neal had initially set an April 10 deadline, which Treasury missed, saying it needed more time to study the issue.

Consovoy initially wrote Treasury on April 5, urging the agency to deny the request.

Darren Samuelsohn contributed to this report.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

I got you babe: Trump says he agrees with Cher’s concerns about migrants

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:39 - [CET]
The president shared a tweet in which the pop icon said her city of Los Angeles already has trouble taking care of its own population.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Warren has new Plan for Fossil Fuel Leasing on Public Lands

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:33 - [CET]
Elizabeth Warren is vowing to prohibit new fossil fuel leasing on public lands if she’s elected president, one of several new energy proposals she rolled out on Monday before a campaign swing in two Western states. Warren, a U.S. senator from Massachusetts, already has launched more than a half-dozen new proposals since entering the Democratic primary , outpacing her many rivals in a calculated bid to lead 2020′s ideas race. Her latest addition to her policy agenda aims to reverse the significant climb in drilling on public lands under President Donald Trump while also fleshing out her approach to climate change, a key issue for her party’s liberal base. Besides an executive order barring new fossil fuel leases on public lands on shore and offshore, Warren said Monday that she would work toward boosting U.S. electricity generation from renewable sources offshore or on public lands. Her plan also includes free entry to national parks, the reinstatement of Obama-era environmental policies Trump rolled back and the creation of a service program to help maintain public lands. “Any serious effort to address climate change must include public lands — fossil fuel extraction in these areas is responsible for nearly a quarter of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions,” Warren wrote in a Monday blog post announcing her proposals. Warren is set to discuss the public lands policies this week during campaign stops in South Carolina, Colorado and Utah. Her proposals, particularly the bid to end new fossil fuel leasing on public lands, are likely to draw plaudits from environmental groups while running afoul of the oil and gas industry, which has benefited from millions of acres of public land offered for lease since Trump took office. Advocacy groups had urged then-President Barack Obama to halt new leases on federal land without success. However, the Trump administration’s plans for new offshore drilling have sparked legal challenges of their own, including one affecting tests on the Atlantic coast that’s backed by the Republican attorney general of South Carolina. Warren’s bid for a dramatic increase in renewable electricity generation on public land and offshore is a major turnabout from current policy. She acknowledged in her blog post that her goal is “nearly ten times what we are currently generating” but billed it as achievable. Among Warren’s other policy rollouts this year are proposals to tax the nation’s wealthiest people and tax corporations with profits greater than $100 million , a universal child care plan and proposals designed to decrease consolidation in the tech industry and the agriculture industry.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The Latest: Trump says migrants to go to 'sanctuary cities'

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:30 - [CET]

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on President Donald Trump and immigration (all times local):

12:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump now says that his proposal to send migrants to so-called sanctuary cities is taking effect.

Trump is tweeting that, "Those Illegal Immigrants who can no longer be legally held" in custody ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Dems launch probe into Trump’s sanctuary city push

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:19 - [CET]

Top House Democrats are launching an investigation into President Donald Trump’s contentious proposal to release undocumented immigrants detained at the border into so-called sanctuary cities.

The leaders of the House Judiciary Committee, House Oversight Committee and House Homeland Security Committee wrote to senior White House officials on Monday seeking emails and other documents related to the plan, which they called a “bizarre and unlawful attempt to score political points.”

“Not only does the Administration lack the legal authority to transfer detainees in this manner, it is shocking that the President and senior Administration officials are even considering manipulating release decisions for purely political reasons,” the three chairmen, Reps. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), and Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), wrote in the letter.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed Sunday that the administration is considering a proposal to allow officials to transfer undocumented immigrants into cities that have limited their cooperation with federal immigration agencies.

Those sanctuary cities — such as San Francisco, New York and Boston — tend to be concentrated in Democratic congressional districts.

Sanders said Sunday that the idea would “spread out” the “burden” of undocumented immigrants across the U.S.

House Democrats are seeking documents dating back to November 2018, when the White House was first considering the plan, but which was reportedly rejected by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Wisconsin immigrant group leader dismisses Trump idea

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:12 - [CET]

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - The leader of a Wisconsin immigrant rights group is dismissing President Donald Trump's proposal to send detained migrants to "sanctuary cities."

Milwaukee County along with the cities of Madison and Racine are generally considered to be sanctuaries in Wisconsin. That's defined as areas that don't allow ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The 1989 precedent that raises questions about how Barr will redact the Mueller report

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:04 - [CET]
We spoke with the legal expert who thoroughly documented the incident.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump ups his attacks with Mueller report due Thursday

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:02 - [CET]

WASHINGTON (AP) - The president isn't waiting. As Washington counts down the final hours until publication of the redacted special counsel report - now expected Thursday - Donald Trump stepped up his attacks Monday in an effort to undermine potential disclosures on Russia, his 2016 campaign and the aftermath.

He ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez gives up personal Facebook, says social media is 'public health risk'

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 18:00 - [CET]

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whose social media abilities allowed her 2018 grass root congressional campaign to flourish, said Sunday she has deleted her personal Facebook page, adding social media is a "public health risk to everybody."

“I personally gave up Facebook, which was kind of a big deal because I started ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Mueller report to be released on Thursday

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:55 - [CET]

Attorney General William Barr is set to release on Thursday morning a redacted version of the report special counsel Robert Mueller submitted at the conclusion of his two-year-long Russia probe.

At that time, the report will be made available to Congress and the public, a Justice Department spokeswoman announced Monday.

The nearly 400-page report will be immediately scrutinized for insight into why the special counsel did not establish a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia, as well as Mueller’s reasoning for why he opted to not make a final ruling on whether the president obstructed justice.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Mueller report’s release is expected Thursday, Justice Dept. says

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:55 - [CET]
Attorney General William Barr has nearly finished redacting the account of the investigation into Russian interference and possible obstruction.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

William Barr to release Mueller report to Congress and the public Thursday morning

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:53 - [CET]

Attorney General William P. Barr is expected to release special counsel Robert Mueller's report in a redacted form to Congress and the public on Thursday morning, a Justice Department official said Monday.

The nearly 400-page report is the most anticipated political report in the last 20 years as both Republicans ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Winners of 2018 Florida AP Broadcasters Association awards

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:47 - [CET]

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Winners of the 2018 Florida Associated Press Broadcasters Association Pro Contest have been announced in Orlando, Fla.

Thirty-seven radio and television stations submitted 581 entries in the contest, which featured news and sports stories from 2018.

A list of the winners announced Saturday can be found ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Prosecutors ask Peru judge to keep ex-president behind bars

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:41 - [CET]

LIMA, Peru (AP) - Prosecutors in Peru are asking a judge to keep former President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski behind bars as he is investigated for suspected money laundering related to Latin America's biggest graft scandal.

Deputy prosecutor Hernan Mendoza made the request Monday morning, saying the former Wall Street banker ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

House Dems want administration emails on migrants proposal

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:41 - [CET]

WASHINGTON (AP) - House Democrats asked the White House and agency officials on Monday for internal documents on Trump administration deliberations on its proposal to send detained migrants to "sanctuary cities," which are mostly Democratic strongholds.

The letter , which stopped short of demanding the communications, represented Democrats' formal ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

House Dems probe Trump's plans to release migrants into sanctuary cities

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:40 - [CET]

Democratic committee chairs announced a probe Monday into President Trump's nascent plan to ship illegal immigrants away from the border and release them into sanctuary cities, calling the proposed move "alarming."

"Not only does the administration lack the legal authority to transfer detainees in this manner, it is shocking that ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Barr’s ‘spying’ comment has reached its predictably ridiculous outcome: Trump distorting it beyond recognition

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:33 - [CET]
In a pair of fundraising missives in recent days, the Trump campaign utterly distorted what Barr had said.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Barr’s ‘spying’ comment has reached its predictably ridiculous outcome: Trump distorting it beyond recognition

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:33 - [CET]
In a pair of fundraising missives in recent days, the Trump campaign utterly distorted what Barr had said.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

House Democrats seek communications on White House ‘sanctuary city’ proposal

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:30 - [CET]
Three Democratic chairmen wrote to the administration about the White House pressuring immigration officials to release migrants into the districts of political adversaries.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Donald Trump's favorability up due to increased support from independents and Democrats: Gallup poll

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:18 - [CET]

President Trump appears to have a knack for the long march, taking care of business despite multiple challenges from political foes and a hostile media. That could be paying off.

"President Trump's job approval rating increased relatively sharply over the past month to 45% in an April 1-9 Gallup

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Andrew Yang, 2020 Democrat, proposes $1,000/month 'freedom dividend' for every American over 18

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:17 - [CET]

Venture for America founder and Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang declared Sunday that his universal basic income plan dubbed the "Freedom Dividend" will boost the economy and create two million new jobs.

Speaking during a CNN town hall Sunday, Mr. Yang said his solution to the loss of American jobs ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump Assails Pelosi for Defending Muslim Congresswoman

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:16 - [CET]
U.S. President Donald Trump took a new swipe Monday at Rep.  Ilhan Omar for her comments about the 9/11 terrorist attacks, along with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for defending the Somali American lawmaker. On Twitter, Trump said, "Before Nancy, who has lost all control of Congress and is getting nothing done, decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, she should look at the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and ungrateful U.S. HATE statements Omar has made. She is out of control, except for her control of Nancy!" Omar, one of two Muslim women in the U.S. Congress, said Sunday she has experienced an increase in death threats in the days since Trump posted a video critical of her comments about the September 11, 2001, terror attacks. Trump's Friday tweet included Omar's brief line from a recent speech that "somebody did something" in the attack, followed by more than 40 seconds of Sept. 11 video footage and a large graphic repeating the words "somebody did something." ​Omar said many of those threatening her life directly referenced Trump's post. She also cited a rise in violence and acts of hate by right-wing extremists in the United States and elsewhere in the world, saying, "We can no longer ignore that they are being encouraged" by Trump. "Violent rhetoric and all forms of hate speech have no place in our society, much less from our country's commander in chief," she wrote.  "We are all Americans. This is endangering lives.  It has to stop." Earlier in the day, the White House denied Trump is inciting violence and Islamophobia. "Certainly the president is wishing no ill will and certainly not violence towards anyone," White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said on the "Fox News Sunday" political issues program. "But the president should be calling out the congresswoman for not only one time but a history of anti-Semitic comments," she added, accusing Omar's fellow Democrats of "looking the other way." Pelosi, who oversees the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, said the memories of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington are "sacred ground, and any discussion of it must be done with reverence." She asked security officials to make sure Omar and her staff are protected at the Capitol and nearby congressional office buildings. Pelosi called Trump's video "disrespectful and dangerous," and said it must be removed. Democratic Rep. Jerrold Nadler said on CNN Sunday he had no problem with Omar's comments. "I have had some problems with some of her other remarks, but not with that one," he said. In an emotional speech last month to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, Omar spoke out against discrimination against and suspicions of Muslims. "CAIR was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something, that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties. For far too long, we have lived with the discomfort of being a second-class citizen, and frankly, I'm tired of it. And every single Muslim in the country should be tired of it," she said. Other Omar critics have focused solely on that one single line, accusing her of trivializing the inhumanity of Sept. 11 but not mentioning the rest of her speech. Some Democrats accuse Trump of stirring up the same kind of Islamophobia that Omar was decrying. Nadler said Trump has "no moral authority" for talking about Sept. 11. He accused Trump of "stealing" a $150,000 grant meant for small business owners to rebuild their destroyed businesses after the attack and using that money for his own real estate holding. Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders noted that then-President George W. Bush, a Republican, went to a mosque after 9/11 to assure Muslim Americans that they are not criminals and terrorists.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump Renews Exoneration Claim in Russia Probe

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:07 - [CET]
U.S. President Donald Trump claimed again Monday that he is already exonerated of wrongdoing linked to the 2016 election, even as he and the American public await the imminent release of special counsel Robert Mueller's nearly 400-page report on Russian meddling aimed at helping him win. The U.S. leader, on Twitter, said that Mueller and Attorney General William Barr, based on Mueller's findings, "have already ruled No Collusion, No Obstruction." Trump contended that "these crimes were committed" by his 2016 opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and "Dirty Cops," his derogatory term for former top U.S. law enforcement officials, "and others! INVESTIGATE THE INVESTIGATORS!" Washington is expecting that Barr could disclose a redacted version of Mueller's report early this week, much-awaited details from the prosecutor's 22-month investigation of Trump campaign contacts with Russia and whether Trump, as president, obstructed justice by trying to thwart the probe. Sparring over the report in advance of its release is rampant. Barr released a four-page summary of Mueller's findings three weeks ago, saying the prosecutor had concluded that Trump and his campaign did not collude with Russia to help him win but had reached no conclusion whether Trump obstructed justice. But with Mueller not reaching a decision on the obstruction issue, Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein decided no obstruction charges against Trump were warranted. Barr, a Trump appointee as the country's top law enforcement official, said last week he believes that top American intelligence agencies spied on the Trump campaign and is opening an investigation to see whether it was "adequately predicated." As for the Mueller report, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told Fox News Sunday, "I don't think it is going to be damaging to the president." Congressman Jerrold Nadler, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee that is probing the election, told CNN on Sunday that Barr should release the full report and underlying investigatory evidence to his panel, but Barr has balked. "To deny the Judiciary Committee and the Congress the knowledge of what's in parts of the Mueller report is not proper," Nadler said. No one other than Barr and key officials in the Justice Department, Mueller and his team of prosecutors appear to know what the report says about the extent of Trump campaign links with Russia during his 2016 campaign or whether he took any actions as the U.S. leader aimed at inhibiting the investigation. Nadler said that even though Barr concluded no obstruction charges should be brought against Trump, his decision should not go without review. Nadler noted that Barr, before he became the country's top law enforcement official, wrote that Trump could not obstruct justice because the president "is the boss of the Justice Department and could order it around to institute an investigation, to eliminate an investigation or could not be questioned about that." "In other words, (Barr) thinks as a matter of law a president can't obstruct justice, which is a very wild theory to which most people do not agree," Nadler said. "The fact of the matter is we should see and judge for ourselves and Congress should judge whether the president obstructed justice or not, and the public ultimately." Nadler said it "may be that Mueller decided not to prosecute obstruction of justice for various reasons that there wasn't proof beyond a reasonable doubt on some things. But there still may have been proof of some very bad deeds and very bad motives. And we need to see them and the public needs to see them." Since the release of Barr's summary, Trump has claimed "total exoneration, no collusion, no obstruction." Trump for months derided Mueller's investigation, but said he believes Mueller acted honorably in clearing him of colluding with Russia. Opposition Democrats like Nadler have launched new investigations of Trump, a Republican, but the president is objecting. On Twitter, Trump said Saturday, "Why should Radical Left Democrats in Congress have a right to retry and examine the $35,000,000 (two years in the making) No Collusion Mueller Report...." Barr has said he will release as much of the Mueller report as possible, while excluding material Mueller included from secret grand jury testimony and confidential U.S. intelligence sources.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Tim Ryan: 'The president is lazy' and causing issues in Central America

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:06 - [CET]

Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tim Ryan said Monday President Trump's laziness is contributing to the crisis on the southern border.

"He has failed to address the issues in Central America. Quite frankly, the president is lazy. He doesn't read his presidential daily briefing. He ignored this problem. We want presidents ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump attorneys warn accounting firm not to hand over financial records

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 17:00 - [CET]

President Donald Trump’s attorneys are warning of potential legal action if an accounting firm turns over a decade of the president’s financial records to the House Oversight and Reform Committee.

Trump attorneys William S. Consovoy and Stefan Passantino are urging Mazars USA not to comply with a subpoena that Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) plans to issue on Monday for Trump’s financial documents, calling it a politically motivated scheme to take down the president.

“It is no secret that the Democrat Party has decided to use its new House majority to launch a flood of investigations into the president’s personal affairs in hopes of using anything they can find to damage him politically,” Consovoy and Passantino wrote to Jerry D. Bernstein, Mazars’ outside counsel.

The attorneys said they were formally putting Mazars ”on notice” — an implicit threat of legal action. They also urged Bernstein to hold off on providing the documents to Cummings until the subpoena can be litigated in court, suggesting that a protracted legal battle is likely to ensue.

“The Democrats’ fervor has only intensified after the special counsel squelched their ‘Russia collusion’ narrative,” the attorneys continued, outlining a series of legal precedents which they argue prevents Mazars from complying with Cummings’ subpoena.

Last month, the committee formally requested that Mazars turn over 10 years of Trump’s financial records, related specifically to the Trump Organization, the president's revocable trust, and other subsidiaries.

In response, Mazars asked for a so-called “friendly” subpoena so that it could comply. Cummings told the firm that it was seeking the documents in order to corroborate the testimony of Michael Cohen, the president’s former attorney and fixer, who alleged that Trump artificially inflated and deflated the value of his assets for his personal benefit.

Consovoy and Passantino questioned the committee’s legal authority to conduct such an investigation.

“[T]he House Oversight Committee is not a miniature Department of Justice, charged with investigating and prosecuting potential federal crimes. It is a legislative body, not ‘a law enforcement or trial agency,’ and the chairman’s attempt to assume for Congress the role of police, prosecutor, and judge is unconstitutional,” the wrote.

In a separate letter to Cummings, Consovoy and Passantino echoed Republicans’ criticism of the Mazars subpoena.

On Monday, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, the top Republican on the Oversight Committee, also wrote a memo to the panel’s members outlining his own concerns with the subpoena.

Jordan said it was a “grave abuse” of power and a violation of Cummings’ pledge to allow committee members to vote on subpoenas before they are authorized. Cummings said on Friday that he planned to issue it unilaterally due to the two-week congressional recess which began on Monday.

“I strongly object to Chairman Cummings’ unprecedented subpoena to Mazars and his irresponsible and gravely dangerous course of conduct in a singular obsession of attacking President Trump and his family for political gain,” Jordan wrote.

A spokeswoman for Cummings did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the letter from Trump’s attorneys. Bernstein, Mazars’ outside counsel, also did not respond.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The two freshmen House members at the center of a ferocious political fight

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:45 - [CET]
Dan Crenshaw helped ignite the ongoing uproar over Ilhan Omar.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Democrats calling on donors to catch up to Trump's big fundraising haul

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:26 - [CET]

Democrats raised the alarm Monday about President Trump's massive first-quarter fundraising haul for reelection, warning liberal donors that the president's campaign war chest could leave Democratic challengers "in the dust."

"Now that we've seen how much cash the GOP has stockpiled, we've got to take things up a notch," said ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

‘Such a puff piece’: Nancy Pelosi unleashed on Trump in a ‘60 Minutes’ interview, and the president isn’t happy

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:12 - [CET]
"There's nobody in the country who knows better that he should not be president of the United States than Donald Trump," Pelosi said in the interview that aired Sunday.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

The Daily 202: How the nature of cyberwar is changing

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON POST POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:07 - [CET]
Government systems remain vulnerable as more adversaries play the game.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Katie Porter: 'I'll take that bet' Congress isn't 'smart enough' to review Trump's tax returns

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:04 - [CET]

Rep. Katie Porter responded Monday to comments made by White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders Sunday claiming congressional Democrats were not "smart enough" to review President Trump's tax returns if they obtain them.

"I'll take that bet anytime. I do my own taxes. I'm a law professor. I serve ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

White House weighs travel restrictions for countries with frequent visa overstays

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:03 - [CET]

The White House is weighing travel restrictions for nationals of countries with high rates of overstaying visas in the United States, according to a Department of Homeland Security official.

Some of the countries with the highest rates of overstaying temporary visas are in Africa. Chad, Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Eritrea, Liberia, Somalia, and South Sudan have among the highest overstay rates for short-term tourist and business visas, although they send relatively small numbers of travelers to the U.S. each year. During a meeting in January 2018, President Donald Trump reportedly referred to Haiti and some African nations as “shithole countries“ and questioned why their nationals should be admitted to the U.S.

The prospective action, which was also confirmed by a congressional staffer, comes amid a leadership shakeup among Trump’s top immigration staff. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen left her post last week and three other officials recently resigned or were pushed out. The departures clear the way for the White House to implement a range of new enforcement measures — including the prospective travel clampdown.

News of the prospective travel restrictions was first reported Sunday in the Wall Street Journal.

White House spokesman Hogan Gidley told the Journal that reducing overstays remains a priority for the administration. The White House could issue a related presidential proclamation as soon as this week, a Homeland Security Department official told POLITICO.

Trump has focused intensely during his presidency on the flow of migrants at the southwest border, but devoted little attention to the hundreds of thousands of migrants who overstay a visa each year. In 2004, Congress called for the development of a biometric system to track arrivals and departures from the U.S. Successive administrations — including the current one — have failed implement biometric exit tracking, although Customs and Border Protection has conducted several pilots.

A 2006 report by the Pew Research Center estimated that up to 45 percent of the undocumented population entered the country on a valid visa, but did not depart. Roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants reside in the U.S., according to the organization’s latest analysis.

The Homeland Security Department counted 701,900 overstays of non-immigrant visas in fiscal year 2017, just 1.3 percent of all short-term visitors to the U.S. in that year.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Trump escalates his attacks on Omar after Pelosi ups her security

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 16:03 - [CET]

President Donald Trump on Monday escalated his verbal attacks on Rep. Ilhan Omar, less than 24 hours after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that she is seeking protection for the Minnesota congresswoman due to increased death threats following tweets from the president.

"Before Nancy, who has lost all control of Congress and is getting nothing done, decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, she should look at the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and ungrateful U.S. HATE statements Omar has made," Trump tweeted. "She is out of control, except for her control of Nancy!"

Pelosi on Sunday announced that U.S. Capitol Police and the House sergeant-at-arms “are conducting a security assessment to safeguard" Omar, her family and staff after Trump tweeted an edited video of the Minnesota Democrat superimposed over images of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

“We will never forget,” Trump's wrote on Friday in the tweet that included the edited video.

Trump's video tweet came after Omar made remarks about the civil liberties of Muslims in the United States, during which she referred to the 9/11 terrorist attacks by saying "some people did something." Omar, one of the first Muslim women to be elected to Congress, has received backlash for her comments.

Several Republicans and conservative commentators called out the congresswoman after her comments, with Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas) causing her remarks to go viral.

However a number of Democrats, including freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have come to Omar's defense.

Omar on Sunday evening said in a statement, "since the President’s tweet Friday evening, I have experienced an increase in direct threats on my life — many directly referencing or replying to the President’s video."

"Violent rhetoric and all forms of hate speech have no place in our society, much less from our country's Commander in Chief," she said in the statement. "We are all Americans. This is endangering lives. It has to stop."

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Paul Ryan Says Rest of World Should Be More Like Taiwan

Reported to us by: US Politics - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 15:35 - [CET]
The former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, said Monday that the U.S. wants the rest of the world to be more like Taiwan — praise that will likely anger Beijing, which has long been sensitive to cooperation between the U.S. and the democratically governed island that China claims as its own. "Taiwan is a democratic success story, a reliable partner and a force for good in the world," Ryan said at a celebration for the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act, which guides U.S. policy toward Taiwan.   While the U.S. does not have formal diplomatic ties with the island, the act requires Washington to ensure that Taiwan can defend itself.   "We want the rest of the world to be more like Taiwan," said Ryan, who led an American delegation to the American Institute in Taiwan, the de facto U.S. embassy. He said both parties care deeply about the "critically important relationship" between the U.S. and Taiwan.   Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who also spoke at the event, praised the two parties' "enduring partnership" as one that has "withstood the test of time."   Taiwan split from mainland China during a civil war in 1949, and only 17 mainly small, developing nations recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation. Over the past year, Beijing has employed increasingly strident rhetoric around "re-unifying" the island with Communist Party-ruled mainland China, declaring that it has not ruled out the use of force.   Ryan said the U.S. "commitment to Taiwan's security remains rock-solid."   Last month, Taiwan asked to purchase new fighter jets and tanks from the U.S., its main supplier of military weapons. American arms sales to Taiwan have long been a thorn in U.S. relations with China.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Donald Trump: Nancy Pelosi is defending 'her leader' Ilhan Omar

Reported to us by: WASHINGTON TIMES POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 15:33 - [CET]

President Trump said Monday House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi is actually a subordinate to Rep. Ilhan Omar, adding she should look at Ms. Omar's "anti-Semitic" comments before defending her.

"Before Nancy, who has lost all control of Congress and is getting nothing done, decides to defend her leader, Rep. Omar, ...

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Donald Trump to attend sumo match in Japan

Reported to us by: POLITICO TOP PICKS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 15:25 - [CET]

This story is being published by POLITICO as part of a content partnership with the South China Morning Post. It originally appeared on scmp.com on April 15, 2019.

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to attend the final day of the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo in late May and may be granted the honor of awarding the Emperor’s Cup to the victorious wrestler.

The White House has requested front-row box seats at the Ryogoku Sumo Stadium on May 26, the final day of the two-week tournament, and the Japan Sumo Association is making preparations for the visit.

Those preparations will include ensuring security for the president and his party while they are in the stadium that is at the heart of Japan’s national sport. Unless modifications are made to the boxes, the U.S. president will sit on the floor in a space about 1.3 meters square and about 5 meters from the raised clay “dohyo” where the wrestlers fight.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is also expected to attend the final day of the tournament, which will take place on the first day of Trump’s three-day visit to Japan.

A number of Hawaiian wrestlers have in the past risen to the highest ranks in this ancient and highly ritualized sport, although there are no Americans presently in the top levels of the sport and in with a chance of lifting the trophy.

Trump and Abe may also be joined at the event by the new emperor and empress of Japan as they traditionally attend one day of each tournament in Tokyo, although the emperor has his own box.

Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine

Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED

Article 13: UK helps push through new EU copyright rules

Reported to us by: BBC POLITICS - Mon, 04/15/2019 - 15:20 - [CET]
The UK supports a final vote in favour of new online copyright rules, but some EU nations objected.
Newsitem placed in category: POLITICAL NEWS UPDATED



Recommended reading [ Posts, articles, documents ]

Report internet garbage on this webpage 24 hours. Apr 16 0 By POLITICAL AVENUE

On this page you can report the worst and shitty online garbage content that made it's way up to the internet.


Police in the Netherlands are investigating the brutal torture of a bitcoin trader, whose home was raided by criminals looking for cryptocurrency.


The Department of Justice on Thursday announced a criminal charge against Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange, accusing him of conspiring to hack into a classified U.S. government computer.


Honestly, check the CNBC headline:
'Alexa, find me a doctor': Amazon Alexa adds new medical skills

Amazon is moving more deeply into the $3.5 trillion health care sector.


Want to learn more about SIGINT? -Read this.
Here's the evidence from within the NSA organization. Even when the original document is dated a bunch of years back in time, we think of it as a schoolbook example of what USA is up to.


Twenty-nine-year old Devon Alexander, of Coraopolis, worked as a behavioral specialist at the Pace Special Education School in Churchill. The drugs included suspected cocaine, crack cocaine, raw and packaged heroin, a plastic bag of Xanax, marijuana and ecstasy.


Why is it a brown-red ring-of-light around the moon! You know, we don't have brown-red clouds in Sweden. What causes the brown-red light around it, never seen before? The shining lasted for a total of 2-3 days and was not constant.


World's most powerful nuclear submarines, Arkhangelsk and Severstal, are to be dismantled after 2020. The Russian federal nuclear power watchdog, Rosatom, found their further exploitation unprofitable.

-None property have space for gardens.. Mar 3 0 By POLITICAL AVENUE

The Yerdelen brothers, construction entrepreneurs from Istanbul was riding a real estate boom, and had plans to build more than 700 minicastles.


CYBERTERRORISM is the use of modern communication technology in the commission of terrorist activities.


At the height of his power, Escobar was said to be the seventh richest man in the world, with his Medellin drugs cartel thought to be behind -up to- 80 percent of all the cocaine shipped to the United States.


NEW DELHI: Gearing up for its most challenging space mission, Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is leaving no stone unturned to make the Chandrayaan-2 (lunar-2) mission a success.


Abwehr scored perhaps its greatest victories in the area of industrial espionage, as agents managed to steal the blueprint for every major American airplane produced in the war effort.


Shorn on the sides, thick on top for the Kim Jong-un look; bright and blonde for the Donald Trump-loving customers. -A creative Hanoi barber is offering free cuts ahead of the leaders’ meeting in the next week in their Vietnamese capital.


Time for a history lesson ! - Here's some old newspaper frontpages you might recognize in memory lane! *Hitler is dead* *Hindenburg* etc.
This is a relatively new post, and it will be updated later with more frontpage material.


Hello. My name is Ed Snowden. A little over one month ago, I had family, a home in paradise, and I lived in great comfort. I also had the capability without any warrant to search for, seize, and read your communications. Anyone’s communications at any time.


Here is the complete building, suit and telephone list to all United States Senators including the number to the Vice President (Printed in 2015 by the Sergeant at Arms).


The definition of "political avenue" are built on the fact that a political decision affects the road of life-choices people have access to when they 'travel' through their lifes or the options politicians make available to them.


VX nerve agent on North Korea’s brothers face ! Courts Chemist says Kim had 1.4 times lethal dosage of VX on his face.



High taxes prevented us from hiring the person who would have written the page you requested.


Most of the news published here, you can read in tomorrow's newspaper,
or watch on your television news first in 2 - 3 hours. It's a fast robot to pick up all news fast.
Most often within 30 seconds from when the news first got released or published the first time in any part of the world.
So all news reports, from all news agencies, you have here within the same minute of release. Really quick!
We could adjust it to update every second (technically possible), but it will be considered overload of the news agencies websites, and not popular at all.
So you will have to be okey with one or two intel and news robot automatic updates per minute. Which is still the best news reporting on the market.
Considering the amount of sources we update on (over 100 https:// news channels) per minute. Everything automated 24 hours and 7 days per week.
The goal is to provide the best global overview. And to program the best free Internet tool to stay globally updated at all times.
Example: A nuclear plant outside Oslo, Norway, has a major accident. You want to know more about the situation.
Here you can follow many newsreports from several reporting sources like Reuters, AP, TASS, BBC and CNN to quickly and without to much trouble, asses more information about the accident and get a better overview of the whole situation fast! That's the greatness of this intelligence and news website.
And although some of our clients already work in intelligence agencies and have excellent reporting, they are not always at work having that access.
So when not at work and you wish to have a global update, you are of course welcome here, as the rest of us! Just type NSAROBOT.COM
Hold your mousepointer here in the grey window, or dot it, if you have touchscreen.

Click on the orange button to subscribe to the WORLD NEWS AS REPORTED - RSS FEED!

It works great if you want to have a VERY good up-to-date check of what's happening globally. This delivers all the main news directly to your computer via RSS functions. RSS is an acronym for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary. It is an XML-based method for distributing the latest news and information from a website that can be easily read by a variety of news readers or aggregators. All the world news in one easy to read RSS source / or / website intel category page, Sir & Ma'm!
We have developed the world/&/political news RSS with 1000 news items for supplying foreign intelligence agencies with global information and important intel newsitems dating up to 3 days back in time.
[ Works perfect with net/surf/software Firefox & MS Edge ]
You get all intel/newsitems delivered directly to your computer!

Updates automatically by our news and intel robot every minute.

https://www.politicalavenue.com - All the world news as reported from Washington Post.All the Reuters News Directory at https://www.politicalavenue.comAll the CNN NEWS -click here!The BEST ACCOMPLISHED website WE KNOW of /says NSA about the political avenue - https://www.politicalavenue.com.Politicians are trustworthy says politicalavenue.comhttp://www.politicalavenue.com/TASS news agency page.

Todays latest headlines [search in the database when you need facts for your report]