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The Pronk Pops Show 1371, December 9, 2019, Story 1: Department of Justice Inspector General Report Out — FBI Officials Misled The FISA Court Judge and Omitted Exculpatory Evidence in Their Warrant Application To Spy on American People —  Clear Abuse of Power — Videos — Story 2: Democrat Socialist Suicide Sprint To Trump Impeachment For Defeating Clinton in 2016 — Coup and Cover-up Big Failure — American People Will Be Incensed When They Learn The Details of The Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — Criminal Investigation and Indictments Coming in 2020 Just In Time for 2020 Election — Videos

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Office of Inspector General Report

Review of Four FISA Applications and Other Aspects of The FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane Investigation

From Pages 412 and 414

The FISA Applications to Conduct Surveillance of Carter Page
411
One investigative tool for which Department and FBI policy expressly require
advance approval by a senior Department official is the seeking of a court order
under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). When the Crossfire
Hurricane team first proposed seeking a FISA order targeting Carter Page in midAugust 2016, FBI attorneys assisting the investigation considered it a “close call”
whether they had developed the probable cause necessary to obtain the order, and
a FISA order was not requested at that time. However, in September 2016,
immediately after the Crossfire Hurricane team received reporting from Christopher
Steele concerning Page’s alleged recent activities with Russian officials, FBI
attorneys advised the Department that the team was ready to move forward with a
request to obtain FISA authority to surveil Page. FBI and Department officials told
us the Steele reporting “pushed [the FISA proposal] over the line” in terms of
establishing probable cause. FBI leadership supported relying on Steele’s reporting
to seek a FISA order targeting Page after being advised of, and giving consideration
to, concerns expressed by a Department attorney that Steele may have been hired
by someone associated with a rival candidate or campaign.

The authority under FISA to conduct electronic surveillance and physical
searches targeting individuals significantly assists the government’s efforts to
combat terrorism, clandestine intelligence activity, and other threats to the national
security. At the same time, the use of this authority unavoidably raises civil
liberties concerns. FISA orders can be used to surveil U.S. persons, like Carter
Page, and in some cases the surveillance will foreseeably collect information about
the individual’s constitutionally protected activities, such as Page’s legitimate
activities on behalf of a presidential campaign. Moreover, proceedings before the
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC)-which is responsible for ruling on
applications for FISA orders-are ex parte, meaning that unlike most court
proceedings, the government is present but the government’s counterparty is not.
In addition, unlike the use of other intrusive investigative techniques (such as
wiretaps under Title III and traditional criminal search warrants) that are granted in
ex parte hearings but can potentially be subject to later court challenge, FISA
orders have not been subject to scrutiny through subsequent adversarial
proceedings.

In light of these concerns, Congress through the FISA statute, and the
Department and FBI through policies and procedures, have established important
safeguards to protect the FISA application process from irregularities and abuse.
Among the most important are the requirements in FBI policy that every FISA
application must contain a “full and accurate” presentation of the facts, and that
agents must ensure that all factual statements in FISA applications are
“scrupulously accurate.” These are the standards for fill FISA applications,
regardless of the investigation’s sensitivity, and it is incumbent upon the FBI to
meet them in every application. That said, in the context of an investigation
involving persons associated with a presidential campaign, where the target of the
FISA is a former campaign official and the goal of the FISA is to uncover, among
other things, information about the individual’s allegedly illegal campaign-related
activities, members of the Crossfire Hurricane investigative team should have
412
anticipated, and told us they in fact did anticipate, that these FISA applications
would be subjected to especially close scrutiny.

Nevertheless, we found that members of the Crossfire Hurricane team failed
to meet the basic obligation to ensure that the Carter Page FISA applications were
“scrupulously accurate.” We identified significant inaccuracies and omissions in
each of the four applications-7 in the first FISA application and a total of 17 by the
final renewal application. For example, the Crossfire Hurricane team obtained
information from Steele’s Primary Sub-source in January 2017 that raised
significant questions about the reliability of the Steele reporting that was used in
the Carter Page FISA applications. But members of the Crossfire Hurricane team
failed to share the information with the Department, and it was therefore omitted
from the three renewal applications. All of the applications also omitted information
the FBI had obtained from another U.S. government agency detailing its prior
relationship with Page, including that Page had been approved as an operational
contact for the other agency from 2008 to 2013, and that Page had provided
information to the other agency concerning his prior contacts with certain Russian
intelligence officers, one of which overlapped with facts asserted in the FISA
application.

As a result of the 17 significant inaccuracies and omissions we identified,
relevant information was not shared with, and consequently not considered by,
important Department decision makers and the court, and the FISA applications
made it appear as though the evidence supporting probable cause was stronger
than was actually the case. We also found basic, fundamental, and serious errors
during the completion of the FBI’s factual accuracy reviews, known as the Woods
Procedures, which are designed to ensure that FISA applications contain a full and
accurate presentation of the facts.

We do not speculate whether the correction of any particular misstatement or
omission, or some combination thereof, would have resulted in a different outcome.
Nevertheless, the Department’s decision makers and the court should have been
given complete and accurate information so that they could meaningfully evaluate
probable cause before authorizing the surveillance of a U.S. person associated with
a presidential campaign. That did not occur, and as a result, the surveillance of
Carter Page continued even as the FBI gathered information that weakened the
assessment of probable cause and made the FISA applications less accurate.
We determined that the inaccuracies and omissions we identified in the
applications resulted from case agents providing wrong or incomplete information
to Department attorneys and failing to identify important issues for discussion.
Moreover, we concluded that case agents and SSAs did not give appropriate
attention to facts that cut against probable cause, and that as the investigation
progressed and more information tended to undermine or weaken the assertions in
the FISA applications, the agents and SSAs did not reassess the information
supporting probable cause. Further, the agents and SSAs did not follow, or even
appear to know, certain basic requirements in the Woods Procedures. Although we
did not find documentary or testimonial evidence of intentional misconduct on the
part of the case agents who assisted NSD’s Office of Intelligence (01) in preparing
413

the applications, or the agents and supervisors who performed the Woods
Procedures, we also did not receive satisfactory explanations for the errors or
missing information. We found that the offered explanations for these serious
errors did not excuse them, or the repeated failures to ensure the accuracy of
information presented to the FISC.

We are deeply concerned that so many basic and fundamental errors were
made by three separate, hand-picked investigative teams; on one of the most
sensitive FBI investigations; after the matter had been briefed to the highest levels
within the FBI; even though the information sought through use of FISA authority
related so closely to an ongoing presidential campaign; and even though those
involved with the investigation knew that their actions were likely to be subjected
to close scrutiny. We believe this circumstance reflects a failure not just by those
who prepared the FISA applications, but also by the managers and supervisors in
the Crossfire Hurricane chain of command, including FBI senior officials who were
briefed as the investigation progressed. We do not expect managers and
supervisors to know every fact about an investigation, or senior leaders to know all
the details of cases about which they are briefed. However, especially in the FBI’s
most sensitive and high-priority matters, and especially when seeking court
permission to use an intrusive tool such as a FISA order, it is incumbent upon the
entire chain of command, including senior officials, to take the necessary steps to
ensure that they are sufficiently familiar with the facts and circumstances
supporting and potentially undermining a FISA application in order to provide
effective oversight consistent with their level of supervisory responsibility. Such
oversight requires greater familiarity with the facts than we saw in this review,
where time and again during OIG interviews FBI managers, supervisors, and senior
officials displayed a lack of understanding or awareness of important information
concerning many of the problems we identified.

In the preparation of the FISA applications to surveil Carter Page, the
Crossfire Hurricane team failed to comply with FBI policies, and in so doing fell
short of what is rightfully expected from a premier law enforcement agency
entrusted with such an intrusive surveillance tool. In light of the significant
concerns identified with the Carter Page FISA applications and the other issues
described in this report, the OIG today initiated an audit that will further examine
the FBI’s compliance with the Woods Procedures in FISA applications that target
U.S. persons in both counterintelligence and counterterrorism investigations. We
also make the following recommendations to assist the Department and the FBI in
avoiding similar failures in future investigations.

Story 1: Department of Justice Inspector General Report Out — FBI Officials Misled The FISA Court Judge and Omitted Exculpatory Evidence in Their Warrant Application To Spy on American People —  Clear Abuse of Power By Obama Administration — Cover-up of Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — Videos

 

ATTEMPTED COUP: President Trump BLASTS Findings in IG FISA FBI Report

Full Interview: Barr Criticizes Inspector General Report On The Russia Investigation | NBC News

Fitton slams IG Horowitz’s report findings as as ‘dishonest

Trump legal advisor calls IG report ‘absolutely chilling’

Meadows reacts to IG report: ‘Doesn’t get any more damning than this’

Carter Page plans to go after FBI agents who spied on him

DOJ inspector general finds Russia probe was appropriately opened — but Barr disagrees

DOJ releases inspector general’s findings on FBI surveillance

Tucker: Media proclaims FBI is innocent

Hannity: Deep state in deep legal jeaopardy

Report on origins of Russia investigation released by Justice Department inspector general

Inspector general: FBI properly opened its investigation

JUSTICE NEWS

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, December 9, 2019

Statement by Attorney General William P. Barr on the Inspector General’s Report of the Review of Four FISA Applications and Other Aspects of the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane Investigation

Attorney General William P. Barr issued the following statement:

“Nothing is more important than the credibility and integrity of the FBI and the Department of Justice.  That is why we must hold our investigators and prosecutors to the highest ethical and professional standards.  The Inspector General’s investigation has provided critical transparency and accountability, and his work is a credit to the Department of Justice.  I would like to thank the Inspector General and his team.

The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken.  It is also clear that, from its inception, the evidence produced by the investigation was consistently exculpatory.  Nevertheless, the investigation and surveillance was pushed forward for the duration of the campaign and deep into President Trump’s administration.  In the rush to obtain and maintain FISA surveillance of Trump campaign associates, FBI officials misled the FISA court, omitted critical exculpatory facts from their filings, and suppressed or ignored information negating the reliability of their principal source.  The Inspector General found the explanations given for these actions unsatisfactory.  While most of the misconduct identified by the Inspector General was committed in 2016 and 2017 by a small group of now-former FBI officials, the malfeasance and misfeasance detailed in the Inspector General’s report reflects a clear abuse of the FISA process.

FISA is an essential tool for the protection of the safety of the American people.  The Department of Justice and the FBI are committed to taking whatever steps are necessary to rectify the abuses that occurred and to ensure the integrity of the FISA process going forward.

No one is more dismayed about the handling of these FISA applications than Director Wray.  I have full confidence in Director Wray and his team at the FBI, as well as the thousands of dedicated line agents who work tirelessly to protect our country.  I thank the Director for the comprehensive set of proposed reforms he is announcing today, and I look forward to working with him to implement these and any other appropriate measures.

With respect to DOJ personnel discussed in the report, the Department will follow all appropriate processes and procedures, including as to any potential disciplinary action.”

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/statement-attorney-general-william-p-barr-inspector-generals-report-review-four-fisa

Horowitz report is damning for the FBI and unsettling for the rest of us

The analysis of the report by Justice Department inspector general Michael Horowitz greatly depends, as is often the case, on which cable news channel you watch. Indeed, many people might be excused for concluding that Horowitz spent 476 pages to primarily conclude one thing, which is that the Justice Department acted within its guidelines in starting its investigation into the 2016 campaign of President Trump.

Horowitz did say that the original decision to investigate was within the discretionary standard of the Justice Department. That standard for the predication of an investigation is low, simply requiring “articulable facts.” He said that, since this is a low discretionary standard, he cannot say it was inappropriate to start. United States Attorney John Durham, who is heading the parallel investigation at the Justice Department, took the unusual step to issue a statement that he did not believe the evidence supported that conclusion at the very beginning of the investigation.

Attorney General William Barr also issued a statement disagreeing with the threshold statement. In fact, the Justice Department has a standard that requires the least intrusive means of investigating such entities as presidential campaigns, particularly when it comes to campaigns of the opposing party. That threshold finding is then followed by the remainder of the report, which is highly damaging and unsettling. Horowitz finds a litany of false and even falsified representations used to continue the secret investigation targeting the Trump campaign and its associates.

The investigation was largely based on a May 2016 conversation between Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos and Australian diplomat Alexander Downer in London. Papadopolous reportedly said he heard that Russia had thousands of emails from Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. That was viewed as revealing possible prior knowledge of the WikiLeaks release two months later, which was then used to open four investigations targeting the campaign and Trump associates. Notably, Democrats and the media lambasted Trump for saying the Justice Department had been “spying” on his campaign, and many said it was just an investigation into figures like Carter Page. Horowitz describes poorly founded investigations that included undercover FBI agents and a variety of different sources. What they really discovered is the main point of the Horowitz report.

From the outset, the Justice Department failed to interview several key individuals or vet critical information and sources in the Steele dossier. Justice Department officials insisted to Horowitz that they choose not to interview campaign officials because they were unsure if the campaign was compromised and did not want to tip off the Russians. However, the inspector general report says the Russians were directly told about the allegations repeatedly by then CIA Director John Brennan and, ultimately, President Obama. So the Russians were informed, but no one contacted the Trump campaign so as not to inform the Russians? Meanwhile, the allegations quickly fell apart. Horowitz details how all of the evidence proved exculpatory of any collusion or conspiracy with the Russians.

Even worse, another agency that appears to be the CIA told the FBI that Page was actually working for the agency in Russia as an “operational contact” gathering intelligence. The FBI was told this repeatedly, yet it never reported it to the FISA court approving the secret investigation of Page. His claim to have worked with the federal government was widely dismissed. Worse yet, Horowitz found that investigators and the Justice Department concluded there was no probable cause on Page to support its FISA investigation. That is when there was an intervention from the top of the FBI, ordering investigators to look at the Steele dossier funded by the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign instead.

Who told investigators to turn to the dossier? Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe. He was fired over his conduct in the investigation after earlier internal investigations. Horowitz contradicts the media claim that the dossier was just a small part of the case presented to the FISA court. He finds that it was essential to seeking FISA warrants. Horowitz also finds no sharing of information with FISA judges that undermined the credibility of the dossier or Christopher Steele himself. Surprisingly little effort was made to fully investigate the dossier when McCabe directed investigators to it, yet investigators soon learned that critical facts reported to the FISA court were false. FISA judges were told that a Yahoo News article was an independent corroboration of the Steele dossier, but Horowitz confirms that Steele was the source of that article. Therefore, Steele was used to corroborate Steele on allegations that were later deemed unfounded.

The source relied on by Steele was presented as conveying damaging information on Trump. When this source was interviewed, he said he had no direct information and was conveying bar talk. He denied telling other details to Steele. This was all known to the Justice Department, but it still asked for warrant renewals from the FISA court without correcting the record or revealing exculpatory information discovered by investigators. That included the failure to tell the court that Page was working with the CIA. Finally, Horowitz found that an FBI lawyer doctored a critical email to hide the fact that Page was really working for us and not the Russians.

Despite this shockingly damning report, much of the media is reporting only that Horowitz did not find it unreasonable to start the investigation, and ignoring a litany of false representations and falsifications of evidence to keep the secret investigation going. Nothing was found to support any of those allegations, and special counsel Robert Mueller also confirmed there was no support for collusion and conspiracy allegations repeated continuously for two years by many experts and members of Congress.

In other words, when the Titanic set sail, there was no reason for it not to. Then there was that fateful iceberg. Like the crew of the Titanic, the FBI knew investigative icebergs floated around its Russia investigation, but not only did it not reduce speed, it actively suppressed the countervailing reports. Despite the many conflicts to its FISA application and renewals, the FBI leadership, including McCabe, plowed ahead into the darkness.

Jonathan Turley is the chair of public interest law at George Washington University and served as the last lead counsel in a Senate impeachment trial. He testified as a Republican witness in House Judiciary Committee hearing in the Trump impeachment inquiry. Follow him @JonathanTurley.

https://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/473709-horowitz-report-is-damning-for-the-fbi-and-unsettling-for-the-rest-of-us

 

IG report on Trump-Russia reveals ‘unacceptable’ problems says FBI director Chris Wray who says agency will reform the most sensitive probes and eavesdropping warrants

  • Chris Wray, the new head of the FBI, makes rare public statement after Michael Horowitz publishes scathing report on agency’s Trump-Russia probe
  • Wray – who was not in charge during the investigation – promised a string of reforms to handling the most sensitive and intrusive cases
  • ‘The American people rightly expect that the FBI, when it acts to protect the country, is going to do it right – each time, every time,’ he said 

A Justice Department inspector general report on the early days of the Russia investigation identified problems that are ‘unacceptable and unrepresentative of who we are as an institution,’ FBI Director Chris Wray said Monday in detailing changes the bureau plans to make in response.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Wray said the FBI had cooperated fully with the inspector general – which concluded in its report that the investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia was legitimate but also cited serious flaws – and accepted all its recommendations.

Wray said the FBI would make changes to how it handles confidential informants, how it applies for warrants from the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, how it conducts briefings on foreign influence for presidential nominees and how it structures sensitive investigations like the 2016 Russia probe. He said he has also reinstated ethics training.

Speaking out: Chris Wray said the FBI would make changes after the report by Michael Horowitz revealed mistakes in the handling of the Trump-Russia probe

Speaking out: Chris Wray said the FBI would make changes after the report by Michael Horowitz revealed mistakes in the handling of the Trump-Russia probe

Failings: Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department Inspector General, said the FBI had not acted out of anti-Trump bias but had made a string of mistakes when it wiretapped one of his allies

Out now: The IG's report sent shockwaves around Washington D.C.

‘I am very committed to the FBI being agile in its tackling of foreign threats,’ Wray said.

‘But I believe you can be agile and still scrupulously follow our rules, policies and processes.’

The FBI’s decision to target Page with spying authorized by a secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court was made and reinforced by the FBI’s most senior leaders, Horowitz wrote.

‘[T]he FBI’s decision to rely upon Steele’s election reporting to help establish probable cause that Page was an agent of Russia was a judgment reached initially by the case agents on the Crossfire Hurricane team,’ he explained, referring to the name of the operation. 

Wray was not FBI director when the Russia investigation began and has so far avoided commenting in depth on the probe, one of the most politically sensitive inquiries in bureau history and one that President Donald Trump has repeatedly denounced as a ‘witch hunt.’ 

Wray’s comments Monday underscore the balancing act of his job as he tries to embrace criticism of the Russia probe that he sees as legitimate while limiting public judgment of decisions made by his predecessors.

He said that though it was important to not lose sight of the fact that Inspector General Michael Horowitz found the investigation justified and did not find it to be tainted by political bias: ‘The American people rightly expect that the FBI, when it acts to protect the country, is going to do it right – each time, every time.

‘And,’ he added, ‘urgency is not an excuse for not following our procedures.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7773767/Wray-Report-Russia-probe-unacceptable-problems.html

John Durham disputes DOJ watchdog conclusion that Russia investigation was justified

Story 2: Democrat Socialist Suicide Sprint To Trump Impeachment For Defeating Clinton in 2016 — Coup and Cover-up Big Failure — American People Will Be Incensed When They Learn The Details of The Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — Criminal Investigation and Indictments Coming in 2020 Just In Time for 2020 Election — Videos

Rep. Doug Collins: The ‘focus-group impeachment’ has no facts

WATCH: Rep. Doug Collins’ full questioning of committee lawyers | Trump impeachment hearings

WATCH: Rep. Jim Jordan’s full questioning of committee lawyers | Trump impeachment hearings

WATCH: Rep. Matt Gaetz’s full questioning of committee lawyers | Trump impeachment hearings

WATCH: Rep. Louie Gohmert’s addresses committee lawyers | Trump impeachment hearings

WATCH: Democratic counsel’s questioning of committee lawyers | Trump impeachment hearings

WATCH: Counsel Barry Berke’s full opening presentation | Trump impeachment hearings

House Judiciary Committee Impeachment Inquiry Evidence Hearing

FULL COVERAGE: President Trump House Judiciary Committee Impeachment Hearing

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1368, December 4, 2019, Story 1: Radical Extremist Democrat Socialist (REDS) Impeachment Inquiry — The Road To Destroying Democrat Party — Compelling, Overwhelming and Bipartisan — Burn Baby Burn –Videos == Story 2: United States House Passes The Uighur Act Demanding Sanctions On China Over Muslim Mass Imprisonment — Videos

Posted on December 6, 2019. Filed under: 2018 United States Elections, 2020 President Candidates, 2020 Republican Candidates, Addiction, Addiction, Banking System, Blogroll, Breaking News, Budgetary Policy, Business, Comedy, Congress, Constitutional Law, Corruption, Countries, Culture, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Drugs, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Former President Barack Obama, Freedom of Speech, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Drugs, Immigration, Impeachment, Independence, Labor Economics, Law, Legal Drugs, Life, Lying, Mental Illness, Monetary Policy, National Interest, News, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Progressives, Public Corruption, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Rule of Law, Senate, Social Networking, Spying, Subversion, Success, Surveillance and Spying On American People, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Terror, Trade Policy, Treason | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Satellite images purported to show the camps where Muslim minorities are held in Xinjiang

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Story 1: Radical Extremist Democrat Socialist (REDS) Impeachment Inquiry — The Road To Destruction of Democrat Party — Burn Baby Burn –Videos

Youtube video thumbnail

FAKE HEARING: Doug Collins GOES OFF On Democrats At Impeachment Hearing

WATCH: Rep. Debbie Lesko’s full statement in House Judiciary Hearing | Trump impeachment hearings

Rep. Doug Collins Closing Statement

NO CRIMES HERE: Law Professor Outlines Reasons For NO IMPEACHMENT For President Trump

Gaetz explodes at impeachment witnesses: You don’t get to interrupt me

Gaetz slams impeachment witness for Barron Trump joke at hearing

THIS IS SCARY: Jim Jordan on Democrats Mission To DESTROY President Trump

Impeachment hearing gets heated: You don’t get to interrupt me!

Noah Feldman’s full opening statement | Trump impeachment hearings

Why Barron Trump Was Mentioned During Impeachment Hearings

Pamela Karlan was ‘totally biased, completely unhinged’: Rep. Zeldin

Rep. Jerry Nadler Closing Statement

Nunes ridicules impeachment hearings: ‘This is totally nuts’

Sen. Lee: Law professor comparing Trump to a monarch is ‘irresponsible’

Tucker: Impeachment witnesses had no evidence, only opinions

Lawmakers speak following Judiciary Committee’s first impeachment hearing

Newt Gingrich: Democrats have a ‘very weak’ impeachment case

Jeff Sessions says Democrats have lost their objectivity

McCarthy, House GOP holds press conference after Trump impeachment report drops

The Trammps – Disco Inferno

Burn Baby Burn, Disco Inferno

Disco Inferno
Producers: Chris Lord-Alge, Tina Turner and Roger Davies
Album: What’s Love Got To Do With It (93)
To my surprise one hundred storeys high
People getting loose now, getting down on the roof
Folks screaming, out of control
It was so entertaining when the boogie started to explode
I heard somebody say
(Burn baby burn) Disco Inferno
(Burn baby burn) Burn that mother down
(Burn baby burn) Disco Inferno
(Burn baby burn) Burn that mother down
Satisfaction came in a chain reaction
I couldn’t get enough, so I had to self-destruct
The heat was on, rising to the top
Everybody is going strong, and that is when my spark got hot
I heard somebody say
(Burn baby burn) Disco Inferno
(Burn baby burn) Burn that mother down
(Burn baby burn) Disco Inferno
(Burn baby burn) Burn that mother down
Up above my head
I hear music in the air
That makes me know
There’s a party somewhere
(Just can’t stop) When my spark gets hot
(Just can’t stop) When my spark gets hot
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Leroy Green / Tyrone Kersey
Disco Inferno lyrics © Reservoir Media Management Inc

‘We’re all mad. Even my dog seems mad!’ Republicans’ first impeachment witness says probe of Donald Trump is driving the country crazy – but that’s NOT a reason to remove him

  • Jonathan Turley became the first Republican-approved witness to testify in the impeachment inquiry on Wednesday
  • He admitted in his opening statement, however, that he is not a Trump supporter 
  • Turley did not use his time to defend Donald Trump, but did concede that the Democrat investigation is based on secondhand information
  • ‘I am concerned about lowering impeachment standards to fit a scarcity of evidence,’ he said in his opening statement  
  • The three other witnesses were all called by Democrats and argued for impeachment
  • ‘The president’s serious misconduct… are worse than the misconduct of any prior president,’ one Democrat-called witness said in his opening remarks

Jonathan Turley, the only Republican witness allowed by Democrats to appear at the impeachment hearing Wednesday, did not use his opening statement to defend Donald Trump.

The George Washington University law professor is the first Republican-requested witness and the only Republican who was permitted to testify Wednesday, but in his opening statement, he admitted he is not a supporter of the president.

‘I’m not a supporter of President Trump. I voted against him,’ he said during his opening statement before the House Judiciary Committee, claiming it was an irrelevant fact. ‘My personal views of President Trump are as irrelevant to my impeachment testimony as they should be to your impeachment vote.’

Turley said that while ‘a case for impeachment can be made,’ the current case brought by Democrats was based solely on secondhand information.

‘I am concerned about lowering impeachment standards to fit a scarcity of evidence,’ Turley continued in his remarks.

He blasted the president’s call with his Ukrainian counterpart as ‘anything but perfect,’ – a word Trump has used to describe his now-infamous July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, which is the genesis of the impeachment inquiry.

Truley also described the current period as one of ‘madness.’

‘I get it, you’re mad,’ Truley said in his remarks aimed at the Judiciary panel. ‘The president’s mad. My Republicans friends are mad. My Democratic friends are mad. My wife is mad. My kids are mad. Even my dog seems mad – and Luna’s a goldendoodle, and they don’t get mad. So we’re all mad.’

No case to impeach: Rage against the president is not a reason for removal, George Washington University Law School professor Jonathan Turley told Congress

She's mad: Luna the goldendoodle is 'mad' despite her breed's temperament, Jonathan Turley said. He has taken his dog to George Washington University, where he lectures

Michael Gerhardt, professor of law at University of North Carolina School of Law, speaks with Jonathan Turley, professor of law at George Washington University Law School, after returning from a break in testimony before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on the impeachment inquiry into U.S. President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 4, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Segar?

Swearing in: Constitutional scholars  Noah Feldman of Harvard University, Pamela Karlan of Stanford University, Michael Gerhardt of the University of North Carolina, and Jonathan Turley of George Washington University get ready to testify

Swearing in: Constitutional scholars  Noah Feldman of Harvard University, Pamela Karlan of Stanford University, Michael Gerhardt of the University of North Carolina, and Jonathan Turley of George Washington University get ready to testify

‘Will a slip-shod impeachment make us less mad?’ he posed.

‘It’s not wrong because President Trump is right,’ Turley said of the impeachment proceedings. ‘His call was anything but perfect. It’s not wrong because the House has no legitimate reason to investigate the Ukrainian controversy. It’s not wrong because we’re in an election year – there is no good time for an impeachment. No, it’s wrong because this is not how you impeach an American president.’

The remaining three witnesses invited to publicly testify on Wednesday were all called by Democrats and included Noah Feldman, a Harvard Law professor, Pamela Karlan, a law professor at Stanford and Michael Gerhardt, a law professor at the University of North Carolina.

They all argued for impeachment in their opening statements before the panel.

‘I just want to stress, that if this – if what we’re talking about is not impeachable, than nothing is impeachable,’ Gerhardt said in his uninterrupted remarks. ‘This is precisely the misconduct that the framers created a constitution – including impeachment – to protect against.’

‘If Congress concludes that they’re going to give a pass to the president here… every other president will say, ‘Ok, then I can do the same thing.’ And the boundaries will just evaporate,’ he continued. ‘And those boundaries are set up by the Constitution, and we may be witnessing, unfortunately, their erosion. And that is a danger to all of us.’

The House Intelligence Committee released a report Tuesday indicating it found that Trump misused the power of his office to solicit Ukraine to interfere in the 2020 elections and also obstructed the impeachment investigation.

Now, the House Judiciary Committee is moving swiftly to weigh the findings by fellow lawmakers.

The 300-page Democrat report found ‘serious misconduct’ by the president.

It did not render a judgment on whether Trump’s actions stemming from his call with Zelensky rose to the constitutional level of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors,’ which would warrant impeachment. That is for the full House to decide.

Its findings involving Trump’s efforts to seek foreign intervention in the American election process will, however, provide the basis for a House vote on impeachment and a Senate trial carrying the penalty of removal from office.

‘The evidence that we have found is really quite overwhelming that the president used the power of his office to secure political favors and abuse the trust American people put in him and jeopardize our security,’ Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff of California told AP.

‘It was a difficult decision to go down this road, because it’s so consequential for the country,’ Schiff continued. ‘[But] the president was the author of his own impeachment inquiry by repeatedly seeking foreign help in his election campaigns.’

Schiff added: ‘Americans need to understand that this president is putting his personal political interests above theirs. And that it’s endangering the country.’

The session Wednesday with legal scholars will delve into possible impeachable offenses, but the real focus will be on the panel, led by Chairman Jerrold Nadler and made up of a sometimes boisterous, sharply partisan division of lawmakers.

Trump declared while attending the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Summit in London that he wouldn’t be watching Wednesday’s hearings, calling the Democrats’ efforts ‘unpatriotic.

Democrat Adam Schiff announces release of impeachment report

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement, ‘Chairman Schiff and the Democrats utterly failed to produce any evidence of wrongdoing by President Trump.’

She added that the report ‘reads like the ramblings of a basement blogger straining to prove something when there is evidence of nothing.’

The ‘Trump-Ukraine Impeachment Inquiry Report’ provides a detailed account of a shadow diplomacy run by Trump’s personal attorney and former Republican Mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani.

Along with revelations from earlier testimony, the report included previously unreleased cell phone records raising fresh questions about Giuliani’s interactions with the top Republican on the intelligence panel, Rep. Devin Nunes of California, and the White House. Nunes declined to comment. Schiff said his panel would continue its probe.

Based on two months of investigation sparked by a still-anonymous government whistleblower’s complaint, which was made public in September, the report relies heavily on testimony from current and former U.S. officials who defied White House orders not to appear.

Schiff wrote in the Democrat report’s preface that the Intelligence Committee’s inquiry found that the president ‘solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, to benefit his reelection.’

In doing so, the president ‘sought to undermine the integrity of the U.S. presidential election process, and endangered U.S. national security,’ the report continued.

It added that when Congress began its impeachment investigation, Trump obstructed the probe.

The Republican counter-report, authored by three House ranking members, claimed Trump never intended to pressure Ukraine when he asked for a ‘favor’ for Kiev to investigate political rival and former Vice President Joe Biden.

They say the military aid that the White House was withholding was not being used as leverage, as Democrats claim. Republican ranking members Devin Nunes, Jim Jordan and Mike McCaul argue that Democrats just want to undo the 2016 election.

Republicans who have defended Trump from the start have echoed his rhetoric that the proceedings are a ‘hoax.’

The president also criticized the House for pushing forward with the inquiry while he is overseas participating in the NATO summit.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called on Democrats to end the impeachment ‘nightmare,’ claiming those on the left are ‘concerned if they do not impeach this president they cant beat him in an election.’

Possible grounds for impeachment are focused on whether Trump abused his office as he pressed Zelensky to open investigations into Trump’s political rivals.

The Democrat report also accuses Trump of obstruction, claiming he is the ‘first and only” president in U.S. history to ‘openly and indiscriminately’ defy the House’s constitutional authority to conduct the impeachment proceedings by instructing officials not to comply with document and testimony subpoenas.

Liberal Democrats are pushing the party to go further by incorporating findings from former special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia report, but more centrist and moderate Democrats want to stick with the Ukraine matter as a simpler narrative that Americans understand.

This is especially important as public opinion polls show Americans are split on whether they support impeachment, and some in battleground states indicate they are confused by the proceedings.

Democrats could begin drafting articles of impeachment against the president in a matter of days, and the full House could vote by Christmas.

After a full House vote, the matter would move to the Republican-controlled Senate for a trial in 2020.

White House Counsel Pat Cipollone wrote that the impeachment is a ‘baseless and highly partisan inquiry.’

He did, however, leave the door open to possible White House participation in future hearings.

Cipollone will brief Senate Republicans on Wednesday.

House rules provide the president and his attorneys the right to cross-examine witnesses and review evidence before the committee, but little ability to bring forward witnesses of their own.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7754109/Serious-misconduct-Trump-takes-center-stage-hearing.html

Noah Feldman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Noah R. Feldman (born May 22, 1970) is an American author and Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. Much of his work is devoted to analysis of law and religion.

Contents

Early life and education

Feldman grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, where he attended the Maimonides School.[2] Feldman was raised in an Orthodox Jewish home.

In 1992, Feldman received his A.B. summa cum laude in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard College, where he was awarded the Sophia Freund Prize (awarded to the highest-ranked among the graduates who received summa) and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in the first round of selection. He was also the 1990 Truman Scholar from Massachusetts. He then earned a Rhodes Scholarship to the Christ Church, Oxford, where he earned a PhD in Islamic Thought in 1994. Upon his return from Oxford, he received his J.D., in 1997, from Yale Law School, where he was the book review editor of the Yale Law Journal. He later served as a law clerk for Associate Justice David Souter on the U.S. Supreme Court. In 2001, he joined the faculty of New York University Law School (NYU), leaving for Harvard Law School in 2007. In 2008, he was appointed the Bemis Professor of International Law.[3]

Feldman is a senior adjunct fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, a previous fellow at New America Foundation, and regularly contributes features and opinion pieces to The New York Times Magazine[4] and Bloomberg View columns.[5]

Feldman was formerly married to fellow Harvard Law School professor Jeannie Suk, with whom he has two children. He is fluent in HebrewArabic, and French, besides English.[6]

Career

As an academic and public intellectual, Feldman is concerned with issues at the intersection of religion and politics. In the United States, this has a bearing on First Amendment questions of church and state and the role of religion both in government and in private life. Feldman’s other area of specialty is Islam. In Iraq, the same reasoning leads him to support the creation of a democracy with Islamist elements. This last position has been lauded by some as a pragmatic and sensitive solution to the problems inherent in the creation of a new Iraqi government;[7] others have taken exception to the same idea, however, characterizing Feldman’s views as simplistic and shortsighted.[8]

Feldman was a featured speaker, alongside noted Islamic authority Hamza Yusuf, in the lecture Islam & Democracy: Is a clash of civilizations inevitable?, which was subsequently released on DVD. An excerpt from Feldman’s 2008 book, The Fall and Rise of the Islamic State, appeared in the New York Times Sunday Magazine and was attacked by Leon Wieseltier for “promoting” Islamic law as a “swell basis” for a political order. This, according to Wieseltier, amounts to “shilling for soft theocracy,” and is hypocritical since Wieseltier presumes that neither he nor Feldman would actually choose to rear their own children in such a system.[9]

Criticism of Modern Orthodox Judaism

In a New York Times Magazine article, “Orthodox Paradox”, Feldman recounted his experiences of the boundaries of inclusion and exclusion of the Modern Orthodox Jewish community in which he was raised, specifically at his high school alma mater, the Maimonides School.[10] He contended that his choice to marry a non-Jew led to ostracism by the school, in which he and his then-girlfriend were allegedly removed from the 1998 photograph of his class reunion published in the school newsletter. His marriage to a non-Jew is contrary to orthodox Jewish law, although he and his family had been active members of the Harvard Hillel Orthodox minyan. The photographer’s account of an over-crowded photo was used to accuse Feldman of misrepresenting a fundamental fact in the story, namely whether he was purposefully cropped out of the picture, as many other class members were also cropped from the newsletter photo due to space limitations.[11] His supporters noted that Feldman’s claim in the article was that he and his girlfriend were “nowhere to be found” and not that they were cropped or deleted out of the photo. Yet others view this claim by Feldman’s supporters as disingenuous, noting that elsewhere Feldman had publicly encouraged the suggestion of air-brushing. Leon Wieseltier attacked Feldman for the dishonesty of “exposing the depredations” of Orthodox Jewish law while praising sharia as “bold and noble,” and called Feldman’s essay a “pathetic whine.”[12]

His critique of Modern Orthodox Judaism has been commented on by many, including Hillel Halkin, columnist for the New York Sun;[13] Andrew Silow-Carroll, editor of the New Jersey Jewish News;[14] Rabbi Tzvi Hersh Weinreb, Executive Vice President of the Orthodox Union;[15] Marc B. Shapiro [16] Rabbi Shalom Carmy, tenured professor of Jewish philosophy at Yeshiva University;[17] Rabbi Norman Lamm, chancellor of Yeshiva University;[18] Rabbi Shmuley Boteach;[19] Gary Rosenblatt, editor of Jewish Week,[20] the editorial board of the Jewish Press;[21][22] Rabbis Ozer Glickman and Aharon Kahn, roshei yeshiva at Yeshiva University;[23][24] Ami Eden, Executive Editor of The Forward; Rabbi David M. Feldman, author of Where There’s Life, There’s Life;[25] and Jonathan Rosenblum, columnist for the Jerusalem Post.[26] In addition, the American Thinker published responses by Ralph M. Lieberman,[27] Richard Baehr,[28] and Thomas Lifson.[29]

Feldman also argued pro bono in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals against the efforts of a Jewish group in Tenafly, New Jersey, the Tenafly Eruv Association, to erect an eruv. However, his arguments were rejected in 2003 and the eruv was, in fact, permitted.[30]

During the Amish “beard-cutting” attacks trial of 2012, Feldman argued against applying the Federal hate-crimes law in the case. He argued in a Bloomberg View column that strife amongst co-religionists, including for example “two gangs of ultra-Orthodox Hasidic teenagers from competing sects,” could be brought under the law. Any dispute that takes place in the context of a church, mosque or synagogue would be ripe for federal intervention. Over time, a hate-crimes law designed as a shield to protect religious groups against bias could easily become a sword with which to prosecute them, he then concluded.[5] The sixteen Amish men and women in the 2012 case were subsequently found guilty.[31]

Public perception and media appearances

Feldman’s work on the Iraqi constitution was controversial at the time, and some, including Edward Said, felt he was not experienced enough with the country to undertake such a task.[32]

In 2005, The New York Observer called Feldman “one of a handful of earnest, platinum-résumé’d law geeks whose prospects for the Big Bench are the source of constant speculation among friends and colleagues.”[33]

New York Magazine named Feldman as one of “the influentials” in ideas, alongside Jeffrey SachsSaul KripkeRichard Neuhaus, and Brian Greene.[34]

In 2008, he was among the names topping Esquire magazine’s list of the “most influential people of the 21st century”. The magazine called him “a public intellectual of our time.”[35]

In 2011, Noah Feldman appeared in all three episodes in the Ken Burns PBS series Prohibition as a legal commentator.[36]

On December 4, 2019, Feldman testified before the House Judiciary Committee regarding the constitutional grounds for presidential impeachment in the Impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump[37]

Works and publications

Books

Selected news and articles

See also

References…

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noah_Feldman

Michael Gerhardt

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Michael J. Gerhardt is the Samuel Ashe Distinguished Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of North Carolina School of Law in Chapel Hill.[1] He is also the Director of the Center on Law and Government at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is an expert on constitutional lawseparation of powers, and the legislative process.[2] He is a Scholar in Residence at the National Constitution Center and Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.[3] On December 2, 2019, it was announced that Gerhardt would testify before the House Judiciary Committee regarding the constitutional grounds for presidential impeachment in the impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump.[4]

Contents

Education and early career

Gerhardt was born in 1956 in Madison, Wisconsin and grew up in Mobile, Alabama, where he attended UMS-Wright and was ranked second in the state in junior tennis. He is a cum laude graduate of Yale University (B.A., 1978), attended graduate school at the London School of Economics (M.Sc., 1979), and graduated from the University of Chicago Law School (J.D., 1982).[5]

Gerhardt served as a clerk for Chief Judge Robert McRae of the United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee (1982-1983) and Judge Gilbert Merritt of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit from 1983 to 1984.[6] After his clerkships, he served as Deputy Media Director of Al Gore’s Senate campaign.[7] Gerhardt then worked for two law firms in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta.

Career

Gerhardt joined the UNC law faculty in 2005.[8] Prior to UNC, Gerhardt worked at Wake Forest School of Law and William & Mary Law School, served as Dean of the Law School at Case Western Reserve, and had been a visiting professor at Duke and Cornell Law Schools. Gerhardt is the author of several books regarding constitutional law and history, including The Power of Precedent.[9] His most recent book is The Forgotten Presidents: Their Untold Constitutional Legacy, published in April 2013 by Oxford University Press.[10]

Gerhardt has assisted members of Congress and the White House on a range of various constitutional issues, beginning with drafting the judicial selection policy for the transition of Bill Clinton into office. Gerhardt then worked with the National Commission on Judicial Discipline and Removal.[11] He has testified several times before the House Judiciary Committee, including as the only joint witness in the 1998 hearing on the history of U.S. impeachment during the consideration of the impeachment of President Bill Clinton.[12] Also, he was one of only two legal scholars to testify against the constitutionality of the Line Item Veto Act of 1996, which the Supreme Court struck down in Clinton v. City of New York.[13]

In 2009, he testified as an expert before the select House committee considering whether to impeach Judge Thomas Porteous.[14] He has also testified before the Senate regarding the constitutionality of filibustering.[15]

Gerhardt has worked and testified in Senate confirmation proceedings for Supreme Court Justices, beginning in 1994 when he counseled the White House regarding Associate Justice Stephen Breyer‘s confirmation hearings.[16] In 2005, he consulted with senators on John Roberts‘ nomination as Chief Justice of the United States.[17] Gerhardt then served as a witness in the Senate Judiciary Committee’s hearings on the nomination of Samuel Alito, to become an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.[18] Along with Professor Laurence Tribe of Harvard Law School, he is the only legal scholar to have been invited to testify in both the 1998 impeachment proceedings against President Clinton and the confirmation hearings for Associate Justice Alito. He also acted as Special Counsel to Senator Patrick Leahy regarding the nominations of Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court of the United States.[19] In 2012, Gerhardt testified again before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.[20]

Gerhardt is interviewed frequently by many news outlets, including National Public Radio,[21] as an expert on constitutional law and issues.[22]

Personal life

Gerhardt is married to Deborah Gerhardt, who teaches contracts, copyright, and trademark law at the University of North Carolina School of Law, and they have three children together, including Benjamin Gerhardt.[23]

References …

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Gerhardt

Pamela S. Karlan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Pamela Karlan
Personal details
Born
Pamela Susan Karlan

February 1959 (age 60)

Domestic partner Viola Canales
Education Yale University (BAMAJD)

Pamela Susan Karlan (born February 1959) is a professor of law at Stanford Law School. A leading legal scholar on voting rights and political process, she served as U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Voting Rights in the United States Department of Justice Civil Division from 2014 to 2015.[1] On December 4, 2019, Karlan testified before the House Judiciary Committee regarding the constitutional grounds for presidential impeachment in the Impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.[2]

Contents

Education

Karlan earned her B.A. degree in history from Yale University in 1980, as well as an M.A. degree in history and J.D. degree in 1984.[3] At Yale Law School, she served as an Article and Book Reviews editor of the Yale Law Journal.[4]

After graduating from law school, Karlan worked as a law clerk for former U.S. District Judge Abraham David Sofaer of the Southern District of New York from 1984 to 1985. She went on to clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun the following year. In a 1995 oral history with Harold Koh, Blackmun revealed that his dissent in Bowers v. Hardwick had been written primarily by Karlan. He said that Karlan “did a lot of very effective writing, and I owe a lot to her and her ability in getting that dissent out. She felt very strongly about it, and I think is correct in her approach to it. I think the dissent is correct.”[5]

Career

After her clerkships, Karlan worked as an assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund from 1986 to 1988.

From 1988 to 1998, Karlan taught law at the University of Virginia School of Law, where she won the All-University Outstanding Teaching Award in 1995–96 and the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia‘s Outstanding Faculty Award in 1997.[6] In 1998, Karlan joined the faculty of Stanford Law School. She is the school’s Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Professor of Public Interest Law. In 2004, Karlan cofounded the school’s Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, through which students litigate live cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.[4] In 2002, Karlan won the school’s prestigious John Bingham Hurlbut Award for Excellence in Teaching.[6]

Karlan has frequently commented on legal matters for PBS NewsHour. During the disputed 2000 presidential election, she appeared regularly in the news media to discuss its comportment with constitutional law. In the aftermath of the election, Karlan, Samuel Issacharoff, and Richard Pildes adapted two chapters from the law school casebook that they co-authored into a book called When Elections Go Bad: The Law of Democracy and the Presidential Election of 2000.

Karlan is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and the American Law Institute.[6]

Public service

In 2003, she was appointed to the California Fair Political Practices Commission by Controller Steve Westly. She served as commissioner to help implement and enforce California’s campaign financelobbying, and conflict of interest laws until 2005.[4]

On December 20, 2013, Karlan was appointed by the Obama administration to serve as the U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Voting Rights in the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.[7] The position did not require confirmation by the U.S. Senate. Karlan took up her post on January 13, 2014, and served for one year.[8][9] She received the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service, the DOJ’s highest award for employee performance, for her work in implementing the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor.[6]

Throughout her career, Karlan has been an advocate before the U.S. Supreme Court.[10] She was mentioned as a potential candidate to replace Supreme Court Justice David Souter when he retired in 2009.[11]

Personal life

Karlan told Politico in 2009, “It’s no secret at all that I’m counted among the LGBT crowd”.[12] She has described herself as an example of a “snarky, bisexual, Jewish women”.[13] Her partner is writer Viola Canales.[14]

Works and publications

Selected books

Selected journals

See also

References

  1. ^ Taylor, Stuart. “An excellent Supreme Court shortlist”National JournalAtlantic Media Company. Archived from the original on 2010-04-12.
  2. ^ Fadulu, Lola (4 December 2019). “Who Is Pamela Karlan? Legal Leader Committed to Progressive Causes”The New York Times.
  3. ^ “Profile: Pamela S. Karlan”. Stanford Law School. Archived from the original on 2008-06-05.
  4. Jump up to:abc Karlan, Pamela S. “CV”(pdf). Retrieved 22 January2018.
  5. ^ Volokh, Eugene (23 April 2005). “Saturday, April 23, 2005”. The Volokh Conspiracy: The Washington Post. Retrieved 23 March 2015.
  6. Jump up to:abcd “Pamela S. Karlan Biography”Stanford Law School. Retrieved 22 January 2018.
  7. ^ Gerstein, Josh (20 December 2013). “Karlan to take Justice Department voting rights post”The Politico. Capitol News Company. Retrieved 23 March 2015.
  8. ^ “Pamela S. Karlan | C-SPAN.org”http://www.c-span.org. Retrieved 2019-12-05.
  9. ^ Gregg, Remington (13 January 2014). “HRC Blog: Pamela Karlan takes helm as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in DOJ Civil Rights Division”hrc.org. Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
  10. ^ Liptak, Adam (31 December 2005). “So, guy walks up to the bar, and Scalia says…”The New York Times.
  11. ^ “Articles about Pamela S. Karlan”The New York Times.
  12. ^ Gerstein, Josh (5 May 2009). “Groups push for first gay Supreme Court justice”The Politico. Capitol News Company. Retrieved 12 April 2010.
  13. ^ “American Constitution Society Blog: Stanford Law Professor Pam Karlan concludes 2006 ACS National Convention”. American Constitution Society for Law and Policy. 22 June 2006. Retrieved 23 March 2015.
  14. ^ Jean Ann, Esselink (29 December 2013). “On our radar – An overdue thank you To Pamela Karlan”The New Civil Rights Movement. Retrieved 23 March 2015.

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pamela_S._Karlan

Jonathan Turley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Jonathan Turley (born May 6, 1961) is an American lawyer, legal scholar, writer, commentator, and legal analyst in broadcast and print journalism. He is a professor at the George Washington University Law School. He frequently is called on by congressional committees to testify regarding constitutional and statutory issues. Most notably he has testified to the House Judiciary Committee regarding the impeachment of U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and Donald Trump.[1][2]

Contents

Education and personal life

Turley was born in Chicago, Illinois. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago in 1983 and his Juris Doctor degree from Northwestern University School of Law in 1987.[3] He married his wife, Leslie, on New Year’s Eve in 1997.[4]

He served as a House leadership page in 1977 and 1978 under the sponsorship of Illinois Democrat Sidney Yates.[5] In 2008 he was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Law from John Marshall Law School in recognition of his career as an advocate of civil liberties and constitutional rights.[6]

Turley lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and four children. He owns a Goldendoodle.[7]

Career

Turley holds the Shapiro Chair for Public Interest Law at The George Washington University Law School where he teaches tortscriminal procedure, and constitutional law. He is the youngest person to receive an academic chair in the school’s history. He runs the Project for Older Prisoners (POPS),[8][9] the Environmental Law Clinic, and the Environmental Legislation Project.[3]

Prior to joining the George Washington University, he was on the faculty of Tulane University Law School.[3]

Testifying at the Supreme Court, 2007

His articles on legal and policy issues appear regularly in national publications; as of 2012, Turley has had articles published in newspapers such as The New York Times,[10] The Washington Post,[11] USA Today,[12] the Los Angeles Times,[8] and the Wall Street Journal.[13] He frequently appears in the national media as a commentator on a multitude of subjects[14][15] ranging from the 2000 U.S. presidential election controversy to the Terri Schiavo case in 2005.[16] He is often a guest on Sunday talk shows,[14] with over two-dozen appearances on Meet the PressABC This WeekFace the Nation, and Fox News Sunday. He served as a contributor on Countdown with Keith Olbermann from 2003 until 2011, and later on Current TV[17] in 2011 and early 2012; Turley also appears occasionally on Pacifica Radio‘s Democracy Now!.[18]

Since the 1990s, he has been the legal analyst for NBC News and CBS News covering stories that ranged from the Clinton impeachment to the presidential elections.[3] He is on the board of contributors of USA Today.[19] He is also a columnist with the Hill newspaper [20] He is currently legal analyst for CBS News and the BBC.[21]

He said “France has turned into one of the worldwide threats to free speech” [22]

Politics

What Turley has called his “socially liberal agenda”[12] has led liberal and progressive thinkers to consider him a champion for their causes, especially on issues such as separation of church and stateenvironmental law,[14][23] civil rights,[11][24] and the illegality of torture.[25][26][27] Politico has referred to Turley as a “liberal law professor and longtime civil libertarian.”[28]

In numerous appearances on Countdown with Keith Olbermann and The Rachel Maddow Show, he called for criminal prosecution of Bush administration officials for war crimes, including torture.[29]

In USA Today in October 2004, he famously argued for the legalization of polygamy,[30] provoking responses from writers such as Stanley Kurtz.[31][32]

Commenting on the Military Commissions Act of 2006, which, he contends, does away with habeas corpus, Turley says, “It’s something that no one thought—certainly I didn’t think—was possible in the United States. And I am not too sure how we got to this point. But people clearly don’t realize what a fundamental change it is about who we are as a country. What happened today changed us.”[27]

He is a critic of special treatment for the church in law, asking why there are laws that “expressly exempt faith-based actions that result in harm.”[33]

Turley disagrees with the theory that dealing with bullies is just a part of growing up, claiming that they are “no more a natural part of learning than is parental abuse a natural part of growing up” and believes that “litigation could succeed in forcing schools to take bullying more seriously”.[34]

He has written extensively about the injustice of the death penalty, noting, “Human error remains a principal cause of botched executions. … eventually society will be forced to deal directly with a fundamental moral question: Has death itself become the intolerable element of the death penalty?”[35]

He worries that the Supreme Court is injecting itself into partisan politics.[36] He has frequently expressed the view that recent nominees to the court hold extreme views.[37][38]

Turley has said, “It is hard to read the Second Amendment and not honestly conclude that the Framers intended gun ownership to be an individual right.”[12] Moreover, Turley testified in favor of the Clinton impeachment.[39]

In another commentary, Turley defended Judge Henry E. Hudson‘s ruling declaring the individual mandate unconstitutional for violating the Commerce Clause of the Constitution: “It’s very thoughtful—not a screed. I don’t see any evidence this is motivated by Judge Hudson’s personal beliefs. … Anybody who’s dismissing this opinion as a political screed has obviously not read the opinion.”[28]

Turley described U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in an op-ed as President Barack Obama‘s sin-eater, writing:

For Obama, there has been no better sin eater than Holder. When the president promised CIA employees early in his first term that they would not be investigated for torture, it was the attorney general who shielded officials from prosecution. When the Obama administration decided it would expand secret and warrantless surveillance, it was Holder who justified it. When the president wanted the authority to kill any American he deemed a threat without charge or trial, it was Holder who went public to announce the “kill list” policy. Last week, the Justice Department confirmed that it was Holder who personally approved the equally abusive search of Fox News correspondent James Rosen‘s e-mail and phone records in another story involving leaked classified information. In the 2010 application for a secret warrant, the Obama administration named Rosen as “an aider and abettor and/or co-conspirator” to the leaking of classified materials. The Justice Department even investigated Rosen’s parents’ telephone number, and Holder was there to justify every attack on the news media.[40]

In a December 2013 congressional hearing, responding to a question from Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) about the danger posed by President Barack Obama’s apparent unilateral modification of laws passed by Congress, Turley said:

The danger is quite severe. The problem with what the president is doing is that he’s not simply posing a danger to the constitutional system. He’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid. That is the concentration of power in every single branch. This Newtonian orbit that the three branches exist in is a delicate one but it is designed to prevent this type of concentration. There is [sic] two trends going on which should be of equal concern to all members of Congress. One is that we have had the radical expansion of presidential powers under both President Bush and President Obama. We have what many once called an imperial presidency model of largely unchecked authority. And with that trend we also have the continued rise of this fourth branch. We have agencies that are quite large that issue regulations. The Supreme Court said recently that agencies could actually define their own or interpret their own jurisdiction.[41]

On November 21, 2014, Turley agreed to represent House Speaker John Boehner and the Republican Party in a suit filed against the Obama administration alleging unconstitutional implementation of the Affordable Care Act, specifically the individual mandate.[42]

On October 11, 2016, Libertarian Party candidate for President, Gary Johnson, announced that if elected Turley would be one of his two top choices for the Supreme Court seat that remained open following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.[43]

In a 2017 column for The Hill, Turley was critical of military intervention in the Middle East and questioned its constitutionality. He also mentioned that he supported the Supreme Court nomination of Neil Gorsuch.[44]

Testimony before Congress

The conceptual thread running through many of the issues taken on by Turley is that they involve claims of executive privilege. For example, he said, “the president’s claim of executive authority based on Article II would put our system on a slippery slope.”[45] He has argued against national security exceptions to fundamental constitutional rights.[37][46]

He is a frequent witness before the House and Senate on constitutional and statutory issues.[47][48] as well as tort reform legislation.[3]

Turley has testified regularly during national controversies. He testified at the confirmation hearings of Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch,[49] Attorney General Loretta Lynch,[50] and Attorney General William Barr.[51] He also testified during the Clinton impeachment hearings.[52]

Turley has also testified in Congress against President Bush’s warrantless domestic surveillance program and was lead counsel in a case challenging it. In regard to warrantless wiretaps he noted that, “Judge Anna Diggs Taylor chastised the government for a flagrant abuse of the Constitution and, in a direct message to the president, observed that there are no hereditary kings in America.[53]

When Congressional Democrats asked the justice department to investigate the CIA’s destruction of terrorist interrogation tapes Turley said, “these are very serious allegations, that raise as many as six identifiable crimes ranging from contempt of Congress, to contempt of Justice, to perjury, to false statements.”[54]

In October 2006, in an interview by Keith Olbermann of MSNBC, he expressed strong disapproval of the Military Commissions Act of 2006.[27]

When the U. S. Senate was about to vote on Michael Mukasey for U.S. attorney general, Turley said, “The attorney general nominee’s evasive remarks on ‘water-boarding‘ should disqualify him from the job.”[26] On the treatment of terrorism suspect José Padilla, Turley says, “The treatment of Padilla ranks as one of the most serious abuses after 9/11 … This is a case that would have shocked the Framers. This is precisely what many of the drafters of the Constitution had in mind when they tried to create a system of checks and balances.” Turley considers the case of great import on the grounds that “Padilla’s treatment by the military could happen to others.”[24]

Turley, in his capacity as a constitutional scholar,[55] testified in favor of the Clinton impeachment.[39][56] He was extensively quoted by congressman James Rogan during the impeachment of Bill Clinton.[57]

On December 4, 2019, Turley testified before the House Judiciary Committee regarding the constitutional grounds for presidential impeachment in the impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump.[58] It was observed that the bases he expressed regarding his prior position that President Bill Clinton should be impeached diametrically contradicted the opinions he shared regarding the impeachment of President Donald Trump, twenty one years later. Those 2019 reports contrasted his extensive quotes from the separate processes.[59][60][61]

Awards

In 2005, Turley was given the Columnist of the Year award for Single-Issue Advocacy for his columns on civil liberties by the Aspen Institute[3] and The Week magazine.[62]

He was ranked among the nation’s top 500 lawyers in 2008.[63] Turley was found to be the second most cited law professor in the country as well as being ranked as one of the top ten military lawyers.[3]

In 2008 his blog was ranked as the top law professor blog and legal theory blog by the American Bar Association Journal‘s survey of the top 100 blogs.[64][65] His work with older prisoners has been honored in various states, including his selection as the 2011 recipient of the Dr. Mary Ann Quaranta Elder Justice Award at Fordham University.[21]  He has received other awards including the James Madison award and was declared one of four university fellows at the Utah Valley University in 2019.[21]

Turley was ranked as 38th in the top 100 most cited “public intellectuals” in a 2001 study by Judge Richard Posner.[66]

Prominent cases

In addition to maintaining a widely read blog,[67] Turley has served as counsel in some of the most notable cases in the last two decades—representing whistleblowers, military personnel, and a wide range of other clients in national security, environmental, constitutional, and other types of cases. His past cases as lead counsel have secured decisions striking down both a federal and a state law [21]. Among them:

  • Lead counsel in United States House of Representatives v. Price, the 2014 constitutional challenge of President Obama’s changes to the Affordable Care Act.
  • Lead counsel in Brown v. Buhman, for the Brown family from the TLC reality series Sister Wives, in their challenge of Utah’s criminalization of polygamy.
  • Lead counsel for five former United States Attorneys General in litigation during the Clinton Impeachment in federal court.
  • Lead counsel to ‘Five Wives Vodka” in successful challenge of ban on sales in Idaho due to a finding that the product was insulting to Mormons.
  • Lead counsel representing Dr. Sami Al-Arian in securing this release for civil contempt and later in defense of criminal contempt charges (which were dropped after years of litigation).
  • Larry Hanauer, a House Intelligence Committee staff member falsely accused of leaking classified information to The New York Times.[68]
  • David Faulk, a whistleblower who revealed abuses at NSA’s Fort Gordon surveillance programs.[69]
  • Dr. Eric Foretich,[48] in overturning the Elizabeth Morgan Act in 2003.[70]
  • Former Judge Thomas Porteous‘s impeachment trial defense.[47] Turley characterized Porteus’ chronic bribe-taking as merely being a “moocher.” Convicted on four articles of impeachment, removed as judge by a Senate vote of 94-2.[71][72]
  • Defendants in terrorism cases, including Ali al-Tamimi (the alleged head of the Virginia Jihad/Paintball conspiracy)-[73]
  • Area 51 workers at a secret air base in Nevada.[74][75]
  • Lead counsel in the litigation over the mass arrests at the World Bank/IMF protests in Washington.[76]
  • Turley represented the Rocky Flats grand jury in Colorado.[77]
  • Turley testified on December 4, 2019, regarding the impeachment inqiry of President Donald Trump, regarding constitutional issues

References …

External links

]://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Turley

Story 2: United States House Passes The Uighur Act Demanding Sanctions On China Over Muslim Mass Imprisonment in Concentration Camps — Videos

See the source image

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Surviving China’s Uighur camps

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Beijing warns Washington is ‘seriously damaging’ global counter-terrorism efforts after the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill condemning China’s crackdown on Muslims

  • Beijing accused Washington of fueling terrorism with The Uighur Act of 2019
  • The U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved the bill yesterday
  • The legislation urges President Trump to impose sanctions on Chinese officials 
  • China today said the bill would affect bilateral cooperation in important areas
  • China’s Vice Minister of foreign affairs summoned a U.S. diplomat over the act
  • Beijing is also considering barring relevant American officials, state editor said
  • Comes after Trump signed off another bill in support of protests in Hong Kong

China has lashed out at the United States after the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday overwhelmingly approved a bill condemning Beijing’s Muslim internment camps, which experts say have kept some one million ethnic minorities in detention.

Beijing claimed that Washington was fueling terrorism, denying China’s achievement and seriously damaging global counter-terrorism efforts with the new piece of legislation, called The Uighur Act of 2019.

China’s Vice Minister of foreign affairs has summoned a U.S. diplomat to lodge stern representations.

The bill urges U.S. President Donald Trump to toughen his response to China’s crackdown on its Muslim minority in the far-western region of Xinjiang and impose sanctions on Chinese officials deemed responsible for the religious policy.

China has lambasted the United States after the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday overwhelmingly approved a bill condemning the Muslim internment camps in far-flung Xinjiang. In this photo taken on December 3, 2018, a guard tower and barbed wire fences are seen around a facility in the Kunshan Industrial Park in Artux in Xinjiang in western China

China has lambasted the United States after the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday overwhelmingly approved a bill condemning the Muslim internment camps in far-flung Xinjiang. In this photo taken on December 3, 2018, a guard tower and barbed wire fences are seen around a facility in the Kunshan Industrial Park in Artux in Xinjiang in western China

Beijing claimed that Washington was fueling terrorism and obliterating China's achievement. In this photo taken on December 3, 2018, people walk by a police station is seen by the front gate of the Artux City Vocational Skills Education Training Service Center in Artux in Xinjiang

Satellite images purported to show the camps where Muslim minorities are held in Xinjiang

Speaking to reporters in London yesterday, Trump commented that a trade agreement with China might have to wait until late 2020.

The Uighur Act of 2019 is a stronger version of a bill that angered Beijing when it passed the Senate in September.

Just last week, Trump signed into law legislation supporting anti-government protesters in Hong Kong despite angry objections from China.

The Uighur bill, which passed by 407-1 in the Democratic-controlled House, requires the U.S. President to condemn abuses against Muslims and call for the closure of mass detention camps in Xinjiang.

It calls for sanctions against senior Chinese officials who it says are responsible and specifically names Xinjiang Communist Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who, as a politburo member, is in the upper echelons of China’s leadership.

Qin Gang, China’s Vice Minister of foreign affairs, today summoned the acting US charge d’affaires, William Klein, to lodge stern representations and strong opposition against the passage of the act.

Qin demanded the U.S. immediately correct its mistakes and stop interfering in China’s internal affairs through issues related to Xinjiang.

Qin accused the U.S. House of Representatives of ignoring facts, confusing right and wrong, and acting against its own conscience.

He also claimed that Washington held double standards on counter-terrorism issues.

The bill urges U.S. President Donald Trump to toughen his response to China's crackdown on its Muslim minority and impose sanctions on Chinese officials deemed responsible for the religious policy. Pictured, Trump holds a campaign rally in Sunrise, Florida, on November 26

The bill urges U.S. President Donald Trump to toughen his response to China’s crackdown on its Muslim minority and impose sanctions on Chinese officials deemed responsible for the religious policy. Pictured, Trump holds a campaign rally in Sunrise, Florida, on November 26

It calls for sanctions against senior Chinese officials and specifically names Xinjiang Communist Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who, as a politburo member, is in the upper echelons of China's leadership. Pictured, Chen speaks during a meeting in Beijing on March 12

It calls for sanctions against senior Chinese officials and specifically names Xinjiang Communist Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who, as a politburo member, is in the upper echelons of China’s leadership. Pictured, Chen speaks during a meeting in Beijing on March 12

Xinjiang Vice-Governor defends Muslim detention camps

The revised bill still has to be approved by the Republican-controlled Senate before being sent to Trump.

The White House has yet to say whether Trump would sign or veto the bill, which contains a provision allowing the president to waive sanctions if he determines that to be in the national interest.

Various authorities in China have lambasted the passage of the bill.

‘The approval of the bill shows that the United States is fueling terrorism,’ said the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.

The Committee added that the act ‘obliterates’ China’s achievement in its fight against terrorism and ‘seriously damages’ global counter-terrorism efforts.

A perimeter fence is constructed around what is officially known as a vocational skills education centre in Dabancheng in Xinjiang in China's far west region. Activists have claimed that the number of Muslim detainees in China could greatly exceed the commonly cited figure

The news comes as China faces widespread criticism over its policy against Muslims. At least one million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims are held in the detention centres in Xinjiang in western China

China’s Foreign Ministry said that the U.S. bill would affect bilateral cooperation in important areas.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying made the remarks in response to a question on whether the bill would affect the ongoing trade negotiations.

She said no one should underestimate Beijing’s resolve to safeguard its interests on matters including Xinjiang.

Hua said in October that all Chinese citizens, including more than 20 million Muslims, were enjoying unprecedented human rights and freedoms while living more happily than ever before.

In an earlier statement, the Foreign Ministry called the bill a malicious attack against China and a serious interference in the country’s internal affairs.

‘We urge the U.S. to immediately correct its mistake, to stop the above bill on Xinjiang from becoming law, to stop using Xinjiang as a way to interfere in China’s domestic affairs,’ said the statement, attributed to the ministry’s spokeswoman, Hua Chunying.

A pervasive security apparatus has subdued the ethnic unrest that long plagued China's north-western Xinjiang region, according to Beijing. Chinese officials have largely avoided comment on the camps, but some said that ideological changes are needed to fight separatism

Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang have been told to vow loyalty to the Communist Party of China and the country's leader Xi Jinping. Pictured, a woman walks past a screen showing images of Chinese President Xi Jinping in Kashgar on June 4, 2019

Authorities in China have reportedly rounded up an estimated one million mostly Muslim Turkic-speaking minorities into internment camps in what they call an 'anti-terror' campaign

Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of Chinese state newspaper Global Times, called the bill ‘a paper tiger with no special leverage that could affect Xinjiang’ before warning that ‘US politicians with stakes in China should be careful’.

He also claimed that Beijing was considering to impose visa restrictions on relevant American officials and lawmakers ‘who’ve had odious performance on Xinjiang issue’. He said Beijing might also ban all U.S. diplomatic passport holders from entering the region.

Hu made the comments on Twitter, which is banned in China by the Communist Party. It’s unclear how and why Hu could use the platform.

China has consistently denied any mistreatment of Uighurs and says the camps are providing vocational training. It has warned of retaliation ‘in proportion’ if Chen were targeted.

Social media footage purports to show Uighur Muslim prisoners being transferred in China

With their heads shaven, eyes covered and hands bound, the detainees are seen wearing purple vests with the words 'Kashgar Detention Center' written on their backs in the clip

China responded on Monday to the Hong Kong legislation by saying U.S. military ships and aircraft would not be allowed to visit Hong Kong, and announced sanctions against several U.S. non-government organizations.

Analysts say China’s reaction to passage of the Uighur bill could be stronger, although some doubted it would go so far as imposing visa bans on the likes of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has called China’s treatment of Uighurs ‘the stain of the century’ and has been repeatedly denounced by Beijing.

Global Times tweeted on Tuesday that Beijing would soon release a so-called unreliable entities list imposing sanctions against those who harm China’s interests.

It reported that China was expediting the process for the list because the U.S. House bill would ‘harm Chinese firms’ interests’, and that ‘relevant’ U.S. entities would be part of Beijing’s list.

Dozens of students are shown at their desks learning Chinese and law in the programme aired by CCTV that introduced the 'professional vocational training institutions' in Hotan

The Hotan Vocational Education and Training Center sits behind barbed wire in Xinjiang

The Hotan Vocational Education and Training Center sits behind barbed wire in Xinjiang

Muslim trainees work in a factory at the Hotan vocational education and training centre

Muslim trainees work in a factory at the Hotan vocational education and training centre

Republican U.S. Representative Chris Smith called China’s actions in ‘modern-day concentration camps’ in Xinjiang ‘audaciously repressive,’ involving ‘mass internment of millions on a scale not seen since the Holocaust.’

‘We cannot be silent. We must demand an end to these barbaric practices,’ Smith said, adding that Chinese officials must be held accountable for ‘crimes against humanity.’

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called China’s treatment of the Uighurs ‘an outrage to the collective conscience of the world,’ adding that ‘America is watching.’

Chris Johnson, a China expert at Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies, said passage of the bill could lead to a further blurring of lines between the trade issue and the broader deteriorating China-U.S. relationship, which Beijing in the past has tended to keep separate.

‘I think there’s a sort of piling-on factor here that the Chinese are concerned about,’ he said.

Johnson said he did not think passage of the Uighur act would cause the delay of a trade agreement between the two countries, but added: ‘It would be another dousing of kindling with fuel.’

China considers Xinjiang a threat to peace in a country where the majority is Han Chinese. Ethnic Uighur women are seen grabbing a riot policeman as they protest in Urumqi in Xinjiang on July 7, 2009

The House bill requires the president to submit to Congress within 120 days a list of officials responsible for the abuses and to impose sanctions on them under the Global Magnitsky Act, which provides for visa bans and asset freezes.

The bill also requires the secretary of state to submit a report on abuses in Xinjiang, to include assessments of the numbers held in re-education and forced labor camps.

It also effectively bans the export to China of items that can be used for surveillance of individuals, including facial and voice-recognition technology.

United Nations experts and activists say at least one million Uighurs and members of other largely Muslim minority groups have been detained in the camps.

Activists this month said that they had documented nearly 500 camps and prisons run by the country to hold members of the ethnic group, alleging that the number of detainees could greatly exceed the commonly cited figure.

What are China’s Muslim ‘re-education’ camps?

The entrance to a jail which locals say is used to hold those undergoing political indoctrination program in Korla in western China's Xinjiang region

The entrance to a jail which locals say is used to hold those undergoing political indoctrination program in Korla in western China’s Xinjiang region

Chinese authorities in the heavily Muslim region of Xinjiang are believed to have ensnared at least one million Muslim Chinese – and even foreign citizens – in mass internment camps since spring 2017.

Such detention campaigns have swept across Xinjiang, a territory half the area of India, leading to what a US commission on China said is ‘the largest mass incarceration of a minority population in the world today’.

Former detainees claimed that Muslims were forced to eat pork and speak Mandarin in those camps.

Chinese officials have largely avoided comment on the camps, but some are quoted in state media as saying that ideological changes are needed to fight separatism and Islamic extremism.

Radical Muslim Uighurs have killed hundreds in recent years, and China considers the region a threat to peace in a country where the majority is Han Chinese.

The internment programme aims to rewire the political thinking of detainees, erase their Islamic beliefs and reshape their very identities, it is claimed. The camps have expanded rapidly over the past year, with almost no judicial process or legal paperwork.

Detainees who most vigorously criticise the people and things they love are rewarded, and those who refuse to do so are punished with solitary confinement, beatings and food deprivation.

China has faced global criticism after a cache of leaked documents showed how the nation run a system of re-education centres to indoctrinate its Muslim people.

The documents, which include guidelines for operating detention centres and instructions for how to use technology to target people, reveal that the camps in Xinjiang are not for voluntary job training, as Beijing has claimed.

After initially denying their existence, China acknowledged that it had opened ‘vocational education centres’ in Xinjiang aimed at preventing extremism by teaching Mandarin and job skills.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7754723/China-says-U-S-seriously-damages-global-counter-terrorism-effort-Uighur-act.html

 

House Votes for Bill to Punish China over Mass Imprisonment of Muslims

DEC 04, 2019

H6 house votes punish china mass imprisonment muslim uighurs xinjiang

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly voted for legislation that requires President Trump to impose sanctions against senior Chinese officials involved in the mass detention camps of Muslim Uyghurs in China’s northwestern region of Xinjiang. The Chinese government responded angrily to the legislation’s passage. This is the Chinese foreign ministry spokesman.

Hua Chunying: “No person should underestimate the Chinese government’s resolution and ability to defend our national sovereignty, national security, and developmental interests. Anyone who wants to use Hong Kong and Xinjiang issues to interfere and restrain China’s development must be delusional.”

The House’s passage of the Uyghur Act of 2019 comes as the New York Times reports Chinese officials in Xinjiang are collecting blood samples en masse in efforts to build a system capable of creating an image of a person’s face using DNA. The United States is also separately seeking to develop this technology, which raises vast concerns about privacy and state surveillance.

Xinjiang conflict

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about recent unrest and fighting in Xinjiang. For the uprisings and battles in Xinjiang during the 1930s and 1940s, see Xinjiang Wars.

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The Xinjiang conflict is a conflict in China’s far-west province of Xinjiang centred on the Uyghurs, a Turkic minority ethnic group who make up the largest group in the region.[12][13]

Though the conflict is traced to 1931, factors such as the massive state-sponsored migration of Han Chinese from the 1950s to the 1970s, government policies promoting Chinese cultural unity and punishing certain expressions of Uyghur identity,[14][15] and harsh responses to separatist terrorism[16][17] have contributed to tension between Uyghurs, and state police and Han Chinese.[18] This has taken the form of both frequent terrorist attacks and wider public unrest (such as the July 2009 Ürümqi riots).

In recent years, government policy has been marked by mass surveillance, increased arrests, and a system of “re-education camps“, estimated to hold a million Uyghurs and members of other Muslim minority ethnic groups.[19][20][21][note 1] The conflict has mostly died down since the early 2017 and there have been no known protests or attacks by Uyghurs since that time.[22]

Contents

Background

Part of a series on the
History of Xinjiang
Museum für Indische Kunst Dahlem Berlin Mai 2006 063.jpg

Xinjiang is a large central-Asian region within the People’s Republic of China comprising numerous minority groups: 45% of its population are Uyghurs, and 40% are Han.[23] Its heavily industrialised capital, Ürümqi, has a population of more than 2.3 million, about 75% of whom are Han, 12.8% are Uyghur, and 10% are from other ethnic groups.[23]

In general, Uyghurs and the mostly Han government disagree on which group has greater historical claim to the Xinjiang region: Uyghurs believe their ancestors were indigenous to the area, whereas government policy considers present-day Xinjiang to have belonged to China since around 200 BC.[24] According to Chinese policy, Uyghurs are classified as a National Minority; they are considered to be no more indigenous to Xinjiang than the Han, and have no special rights to the land under the law.[24] During the Mao era the People’s Republic oversaw the migration into Xinjiang of millions of Han, who dominate the region economically and politically.[25][26][27][28]

Current Chinese minority policy is based on affirmative action, and has reinforced a Uyghur ethnic identity that is distinct from the Han population.[29][30][31] However, Human Rights Watch describes a “multi-tiered system of surveillance, control, and suppression of religious activity” perpetrated by state authorities.[15] It is estimated that over 100,000 Uyghurs are currently held in political “re-education camps“.[16] China justifies such measures as a response to the terrorist threat posed by extremist separatist groups.[17] These policies, in addition to long-standing cultural differences,[32] have sometimes resulted in resentment between Uyghur and Han citizens.[33] On one hand, as a result of Han immigration and government policies, Uyghurs’ freedoms of religion and of movement have been curtailed,[34][35] while most Uyghurs argue that the government downplays their history and traditional culture.[24] On the other hand, some Han citizens view Uyghurs as benefiting from special treatment, such as preferential admission to universities and exemption from the (now abandoned) one-child policy,[36] and as “harbouring separatist aspirations”.[37] Recently there have been attempts to restrict the Uyghur birth rate and increase the Han fertility rate in portions of Xinjiang to counteract Uyghur separatism.[38]

Restrictions

Although religious education for children is officially forbidden by law in China, the Communist Party allows Hui Muslims to have their children educated in Islam and attend mosques; the law is enforced for Uyghurs.[citation needed] After secondary education, China allows Hui students to study with an imam.[39] China does not enforce the law against children attending mosques on non-Uyghurs outside Xinjiang.[40][41] Since the 1980s Islamic private schools (Sino-Arabic schools (中阿学校)) have been permitted by the Chinese government in Muslim areas, excluding Xinjiang because of its separatist sentiment.[note 2][43][44][45]

Hui Muslims employed by the state, unlike Uyghurs, are allowed to fast during Ramadan. The number of Hui going on Hajj is expanding and Hui women are allowed to wear veils, but Uyghur women are discouraged from wearing them.[46] Muslim ethnic groups in different regions are treated differently by the Chinese government with regard to religious freedom. Religious freedom exists for Hui Muslims, who can practice their religion, build mosques and have their children attend them; more controls are placed on Uyghurs in Xinjiang.[47] Hui religious schools are allowed, and an autonomous network of mosques and schools run by a Hui Sufi leader was formed with the approval of the Chinese government.[48][page needed][49] According to The Diplomat, Uyghur religious activities are curtailed but Hui Muslims are granted widespread religious freedom; therefore, Chinese government policy is directed against Uyghur separatism.[50]

In the last two decades of the 20th century, Uyghurs in Turpan were treated favourably by China with regard to religion; while Kashgar and Hotan were subject to more stringent government control.[51][52][53] Uyghur and Han Communist officials in Turpan turned a blind eye to the law, allowing Islamic education of Uyghur children.[54][55] Religious celebrations and the Hajj were encouraged by the Chinese government for Uyghur Communist Party members, and 350 mosques were built in Turpan between 1979 and 1989.[56] As a result, Han, Hui and the Chinese government were then viewed more positively by Uyghurs in Turpan.[57] In 1989, there were 20,000 mosques in Xinjiang.[58] Until separatist disturbances began in 1996, China allowed people to ignore the rule prohibiting religious observance by government officials.[59] Large mosques were built with Chinese government assistance in Urumqi.[60] While rules proscribing religious activities were enforced in southern Xinjiang, conditions were comparatively lax in Urumqi.[61]

According to The Economist, in 2016 Uyghurs faced difficulties travelling within Xinjiang and live in fenced-off neighbourhoods with checkpoint entrances. In southern Urumqi, each apartment door has a QR code so police can easily see photos of the dwelling’s authorised residents.[62]

In 2017, overseas Uighur activists claimed that new restrictions were being imposed, including people being fined heavily or subjected to programmes of “re-education” for refusing to eat during fasting in Ramadan, the detention of hundreds of Uyghurs as they returned from Islamic Middle Eastern pilgrimages, and many standard Muslim names, such as Muhammad, being banned for newborn children.[63][64] In 2019, it was reported that Han officials have been assigned to reside in the homes of those with interned Uyghur family members as part of the government’s “Pair Up and Become Family” program.[65]

Re-education camps

Since 2017, numerous reports have emerged of people being detained in extrajudicial “re-education camps”, subject to political indoctrination and sometimes torture.[20][21] 2018 estimates place the number of detainees in the hundreds of thousands.[note 1]

This has led to criticism from the UN,[66][67] the United States,[68] and human rights groups.[69][70] China has rejected these criticisms, asserting that the camps are a humane counterterrorism measure intended for vocational training, rather than political re-education.[71][72][73]

Timeline

Pre-20th century

The history of the region has become highly politicized, with both Chinese and nationalist Uyghur historians frequently overstating the extent of their groups’ respective ties to the region.[74][75] In reality, it has been home to many groups throughout history, with the Uyghurs arriving from Central Asia in the 10th century.[76] Although various Chinese dynasties have at times exerted control over parts of what is now Xinjiang,[77] the region as it exists today came under Chinese rule as a result of the westward expansion of the Manchu-led Qing dynasty, which also saw the annexation of Mongolia and Tibet.[78]

Qing rule was marked by a “culturally pluralist” approach, with a prohibition on Chinese settlement in the region, and indirect rule through supervised local officials.[78][79] An increased tax burden placed on the local population due to rebellions elsewhere in China later led to a number of Hui-led Muslim rebellions.[75][80] The region was subsequently recaptured, and was established as an official province in 1884.

20th century

After the 1928 assassination of Yang Zengxin, governor of the semi-autonomous Kumul Khanate in east Xinjiang under the Republic of China, he was succeeded by Jin Shuren. On the death of the Kamul Khan Maqsud Shah in 1930, Jin abolished the Khanate entirely and took control of the region as warlord.[81] Corruption, appropriation of land, and the commandeering of grain and livestock by Chinese military forces were all factors which led to the eventual Kumul Rebellion that established the First East Turkestan Republic in 1933.[82][83][84] In 1934 it was conquered by warlord Sheng Shicai with the aid of the Soviet Union. Sheng’s leadership was marked by heavy Soviet influence, with him openly offering Xinjiang’s valuable natural resources in exchange for Soviet help in crushing revolts, such as in 1937.[85] Although already in use,[note 3] it was in this period that the term “Uyghur” was first used officially over the generic “Turkic”, as part of an effort to “undermine potential broader bases of identity” such as Turkic or Muslim. In 1942, Sheng sought reconciliation with the Republic of China, abandoning the Soviets.

In 1944 the Ili Rebellion led to the Second East Turkestan Republic. Though direct evidence of Soviet involvement remains circumstantial, and rebel forces were primarily made up of Turkic Muslims with the support of the local population, the new state was dependent on the Soviet Union for trade, arms, and “tacit consent” for its continued existence.[87] When the Communists defeated the Republic of China in the Chinese Civil War, the Soviets helped the Communist People’s Liberation Army (PLA) recapture it, and it was absorbed into the People’s Republic in 1949.

The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region was established in 1955.[88]

In the late 1950s and early 1960s between 60,000 and 200,000 Uyghurs, Kazakhs and other minorities fled China to the USSR, largely as a result of the Great Leap Forward.[89][90] As the Sino-Soviet split deepened, the Soviets initiated an extensive propaganda campaign criticising China, encouraging minority groups to migrate – and later revolt – and attempting to undermine Chinese sovereignty by appealing to separatist tendencies. In 1962, China stopped issuing exit permits for Soviet citizens, as the Soviet consulate had been distributing passports to enable the exodus.[91] A resulting demonstration in Yining was met with open fire by the PLA, sparking further protests and mass defections. China responded to these developments by relocating non-Han populations away from the border, creating a “buffer zone” which would later be filled with Han farmers and Bingtuan militia.[89][90][91] Tensions continued to escalate throughout the decade, with ethnic guerrilla groups based in Kazakhstan frequently raiding Chinese border posts,[92][93] and Chinese and Soviet forces clashing on the border in 1969.[92][94][95]

From the 1950s to the 1970s, a state-orchestrated mass migration into Xinjiang has raised the number of Han from 7% to 40% of the population, exacerbating ethnic tensions.[96] On the other hand, a declining infant-mortality rate, improved medical care and a laxity in China’s one-child policy have helped the Uyghur population in Xinjiang grow from four million in the 1960s to eight million in 2001.[97]

In 1968 the East Turkestan People’s Party was the largest militant Uyghur separatist organization, and may have received support from the Soviet Union.[98][99][100] During the 1970s, the Soviets supported the United Revolutionary Front of East Turkestan (URFET) to fight the Chinese.[7]

Xinjiang’s importance to China increased after the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which led to China’s perception of being encircled by the Soviets.[101] China supported the Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet invasion and broadcast reports of Soviet atrocities committed on Afghan Muslims to Uyghurs to counter Soviet broadcasts to Xinjiang that Soviet Muslim minorities had a better life.[102] Anti-Soviet Chinese radio broadcasts targeted Central Asian ethnic minorities, such as the Kazakhs.[103] The Soviets feared disloyalty by the non-Russian Kazakh, Uzbek and Kyrgyz in the event of a Chinese invasion of Soviet Central Asia, and Russians were taunted by Central Asians: “Just wait till the Chinese get here, they’ll show you what’s what!”[104] Chinese authorities viewed Han migrants in Xinjiang as vital to defense against the Soviet Union.[105] China established camps to train the Afghan mujahideen near Kashgar and Hotan, investing hundreds of millions of dollars in small arms, rockets, mines and anti-tank weapons.[106] During the 1980s student demonstrations and riots against police action assumed an ethnic aspect, and the April 1990 Baren Township riot has been acknowledged as a turning point.[107]

The Soviet Union supported Uyghur nationalist propaganda and Uyghur separatist movements against China. Soviet historians claimed that the Uyghur native land was Xinjiang; and Uyghur nationalism was promoted by Soviet versions of history on turcology.[108] This included support of Uyghur historians such as Tursun Rakhimov, who wrote more historical works supporting Uyghur independence, claiming that Xinjiang was an entity created by China made out of the different parts of East Turkestan and Zungharia.[109] Bellér-Hann describes these Soviet Uyghur historians were waging an “ideological war” against China, emphasizing the “national liberation movement” of Uyghurs throughout history.[110] The CPSU supported the publication of works which glorified the Second East Turkestan Republic and the Ili Rebellion against China in its anti-China propaganda war.[111]

1990s to 2007

China’s “Strike Hard” campaign against crime, beginning in 1996, saw thousands of arrests, executions, and “constant human rights violations”, as well as marked reduction in religious freedom.[112] These policies, and a feeling of political marginalisation, contributed to the fermentation of groups who carried out numerous guerrilla operations, including sabotage and attacks on police barracks, and occasionally even acts of terrorism including bomb attacks and assassinations of government officials.

A February 1992 Urumqi bus bombing, attributed to the Shock Brigade of the Islamic Reformist Party, resulted in three deaths.[112]

A police roundup and execution of 30 suspected separatists[113] during Ramadan resulted in large demonstrations in February 1997, characterized as riots by Chinese media[114] and peaceful by Western media.[115] The demonstrations culminated in the 5 February Ghulja incident, in which a People’s Liberation Army (PLA) crackdown led to at least nine deaths[116] and possibly more than 100.[113] 25 February Ürümqi bus bombings killed nine people and injured 68. Responsibility for the attacks was acknowledged by Uyghur exile groups.[117][118]

In Beijing’s Xidan district, a bus bomb killed two people on 7 March 1997; Uyghur separatists claimed responsibility for the attack.[119] Uyghur participation in the bombing was dismissed by the Chinese government, and the Turkish-based Organisation for East Turkistan Freedom admitted responsibility for the attack.[112][118] The bus bombings triggered a change in policy, with China acknowledging separatist violence.[120] The situation in Xinjiang quieted until mid-2006, although ethnic tensions remained.[121]

2007–present

According to Vaughan Winterbottom, although the Turkistan Islamic Party distributes propaganda videos and its Arabic Islamic Turkistan magazine (documented by Jihadology.net and the Jamestown Foundation) the Chinese government apparently denied the party’s existence; China claimed that there was no terrorist connection to its 2008 bus bombings as the TIP claimed responsibility for the attacks.[122] In 2007, police raided a suspected TIP terrorist training camp.[123] The following year, an attempted suicide bombing on a China Southern Airlines flight was thwarted[124] and the Kashgar attack resulted in the death of sixteen police officers four days before the beginning of the Beijing Olympics.[125]

During the night of 25–26 June 2009, in the Shaoguan incident in Guangdong, two people were killed and 118 injured.[126] The incident reportedly triggered the July 2009 Ürümqi riots; others were the September 2009 Xinjiang unrest and the 2010 Aksu bombing, after which 376 people were tried.[127] The July 2011 Hotan attack led to the deaths of 18 civilians. Although the attackers were Uyghurs,[128] Han and Uyghurs were victims.[129] That year, six ethnic Uyghur men unsuccessfully attempted to hijack an aircraft heading to Ürümqi, a series of knife and bomb attacks occurred in July and the Pishan hostage crisis occurred in December.[130] Credit for the attacks was professed by the Turkistan Islamic Party.[131]

On 28 February 2012, an attack in Yecheng killed 24 and injured 18.[132] On 24 April 2013, clashes in Bachu occurred between a group of armed men and social workers and police near Kashgar. The violence left at least 21 people dead, including 15 police and officials.[133][134][135] According to a local government official, the clashes broke out after three other officials reported that suspicious men armed with knives were hiding in a house outside Kashgar.[136] Two months later, on 26 June 27 people were killed in riots in Shanshan; seventeen were killed by rioters, and the other ten were alleged assailants who were shot dead by police in the township of Lukqun.[137]

In 2014, eleven members of an organization said to be an anti-China Uyghur group were killed by Kyrgyz security.[138] They were identified as Uyghurs by their appearance, and their personal effects indicated that they were separatists.[139]

On 1 March a group of knife-wielding terrorists attacked the Kunming Railway Station, killing 31 and injuring 141.[140] China blamed Xinjiang militants for the attack,[141] and over 380 people were arrested in the following crackdown. A captured attacker and three others were charged on 30 June.[142] Three of the suspects were accused of “leading and organising a terror group and intentional homicide”. They did not participate in the attack, since they had been arrested two days earlier.[143] On 12 September, a Chinese court sentenced three people to death and one to life in prison for the attack.[144] The attack was praised by ETIM.[145]

On 18 April, a group of 16 Chinese citizens identified as ethnic Uyghurs engaged in a shootout with Vietnamese border guards after seizing their guns when they were being detained to be returned to China. Five Uyghurs and two Vietnamese guards died in the incident. Ten of the Uyghurs were men, and the rest were women and children.[146][147][148][149][150]

Twelve days later, two attackers stabbed people before detonating their suicide vests at an Ürümqi train station. Three people, including the attackers, were killed.[151][152][153]

On 22 May, two suicide car bombings occurred after the occupants threw explosives from their vehicles at an Ürümqi street market. The attacks killed 43 people and injured more than 90, the deadliest attack to date in the Xinjiang conflict.[153][154][155] On 5 June, China sentenced nine people to death for terrorist attacks in Xinjiang.[156]

According to the Xinhua News Agency, on 28 July 37 civilians were killed by a gang armed with knives and axes in the towns of Elixku and Huangdi in Shache County and 59 attackers were killed by security forces. Two hundred fifteen attackers were arrested after they stormed a police station and government offices. The agency also reported that 30 police cars were damaged or destroyed and dozens of Uyghur and Han Chinese civilians were killed or injured. The Uyghur American Association claimed that local Uyghurs had been protesting at the time of the attack. Two days later, the moderate imam of China’s largest mosque was assassinated in Kashgar after morning prayers.[157]

On 21 September, Xinhua reported that a series of bomb blasts killed 50 people in Luntai County, southwest of the regional capital Urumqi. The dead consisted of six civilians, four police officers and 44 “rioters”.[158]

On 12 October, four Uyghurs armed with knives and explosives attacked a farmers’ market in Xinjiang. According to police, 22 people died (including police officers and the attackers).[159]

On 29 November 15 people were killed and 14 injured in a Shache County attack. Eleven of the killed were Uyghur militants.[160]

On 18 September 2015 in Aksu, an unidentified group of knife-wielding terrorists attacked sleeping workers at a coalmine and killed 50 people.[11] The Turkistan Islamic Party has claimed responsibility for the attack.[161] On 18 November, a 56-day manhunt for the attackers reportedly concluded with Chinese security forces cornering them in a mountain hideout. Twenty-eight assailants were killed, and a sole survivor surrendered to authorities.[11][162]

The Bangkok bombing is suspected to have been carried out by the Turkish ultranationalist organisation known as the Grey Wolves in response to Thailand’s deportation of 100 Uyghur asylum-seekers back to China. A Turkish man was arrested by Thai police in connection with the bombing and bomb-making materials were found in his apartment.[163][164][165] Due to the terrorist risk and counterfeiting of passports, Uyghur foreigners in Thailand were placed under surveillance by Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon[166][167][168][169] and Thai police were placed on alert after the arrival of two Turkish Uyghurs.[170]

On 30 August 2016, Kyrgyzstan’s Chinese embassy was struck by a suicide bombing by an Uyghur, according to Kyrgyz news.[171] The suicide bomber was the only fatality from the attack. The casualties included wounds suffered by Kyrgyz staff members and did not include Chinese.[138][172] A Kyrgyzstan government agency pointed the finger at Nusra allied Syrian based Uyghurs.[173]

Police killed 4 militants who carried out a bombing on 28 December 2016 in Karakax.[174]

On 14 February 2017, three knife wielding attackers killed five people before being killed by police.[175][176]

Terrorist groups

The Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) is an Islamic extremist terrorist organisation seeking the expulsion of China from “East Turkestan”.[177] Since its emergence in 2007 it has claimed responsibility for a number of terrorist attacks,[178][122] and the Chinese government accuses it of over 200, resulting in 162 deaths and over 440 injuries.[179] Hundreds of Uyghurs are thought to reside in Pakistan and Afghanistan and to have fought alongside extremist groups in conflicts such as the Syrian Civil War.[180] However, the exact size of the Turkistan Islamic Party remains unknown and some experts dispute its ability to orchestrate attacks in China, or that is exists at all as a cohesive group.[178][181][182]

The TIP is often assumed to be the same as the earlier East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM), which has been effectively defunct since the death of its leader Hasan Mahsum in 2003.[122] Although the names are often used synonymously, and China exclusively uses ETIM, the link between the two is still unproven.[183]

Al-Qaeda links

The TIP are believed to have links to al-Qaeda and affiliated groups such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan,[183] and the Pakistani Taliban.[184] Philip B. K. Potter writes that despite the fact that “throughout the 1990s, Chinese authorities went to great lengths to publicly link organizations active in Xinjiang—particularly the ETIM—to al-Qaeda […] the best information indicates that prior to 2001, the relationship included some training and funding but relatively little operational cooperation.”[3][185] Meanwhile, specific incidents were downplayed by Chinese authorities as isolated criminal acts.[2][15] However, in 1998 the group’s headquarters were moved to Kabul, in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, while “China’s ongoing security crackdown in Xinjiang has forced the most militant Uyghur separatists into volatile neighboring countries, such as Pakistan,” Potter writes, “where they are forging strategic alliances with, and even leading, jihadist factions affiliated with al-Qaeda and the Taliban.” The East Turkestan Islamic Movement dropped “East” from its name as it increased its domain.[2] The U.S. State Department have listed them as a terrorist organisation since 2002,[186] and as having received “training and financial assistance” from al-Qaeda.[185]

A number of members of al-Qaeda have expressed support for the TIP, Xinjiang independence, and/or jihad against China. They include Mustafa Setmariam Nasar,[187] Abu Yahya al-Libi,[188][189] and current al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri who has on multiple occasions issued statements naming Xinjiang (calling it “East Turkestan”) as one of the “battlegrounds” of “jihad to liberate every span of land of the Muslims that has been usurped and violated.”[190][191][192][193][194] Additionally, the al-Qaeda aligned al-Fajr Media Center distributes TIP promotional material.[195]

Andrew McGregor, writing for the Jamestown Foundation, notes that “though there is no question a small group of Uyghur militants fought alongside their Taliban hosts against the Northern Alliance […] the scores of terrorists Beijing claimed that Bin Laden was sending to China in 2002 never materialized” and that “the TIP’s “strategy” of making loud and alarming threats (attacks on the Olympics, use of biological and chemical weapons, etc.) without any operational follow-up has been enormously effective in promoting China’s efforts to characterize Uyghur separatists as terrorists.”[196]

Reactions

Protesters in PragueCzech Republic carrying Tibetan and East Turkestan flags, 29 March 2016

Hundreds of Uyghurs fleeing China through Southeast Asia have been deported back by the governments of Thailand, Malaysia, and others, drawing condemnation from the U.S., the UN refugee agency, and human rights groups.[197] The U.S. State Department said deported Uyghurs “could face harsh treatment and a lack of due process” while the UNHCR and Human Rights Watch have called the deportations a violation of international law.[198][199]

The East Turkestan Islamic Movement has been recognised as a terrorist organisation by the US,[200] and the EU,[201] among others.

22 western countries and Japan had written to the U.N. Human Rights Council to criticize China on the Uyghur issue.[202] However, fifty countries, many of them Muslim countries, had written a joint letter to the president of the UN Human Rights Council and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, to defend China against this accusation.[203][204][205][206]

The United States Senate and House of Representatives passed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act in September 2019 and December 2019 respectively in reaction to the conflict.[207][208][209][210]

See also

Notes

  1. Jump up to:a b Human Rights Watch gives the following compilation of estimates of the detained population: Adrian Zenz, “New Evidence for China’s Political Re-Education Campaign in Xinjiang“, China Brief, vol. 18, issue 10, 15 May 2018 (accessed 24 August 2018); Chinese Human Rights Defenders (CHRD) and Equal Rights Initiative (ERI), “China: Massive Numbers of Uyghurs & Other Ethnic Minorities Forced into Re-education Programs“, 3 August 2018 (accessed 24 August 2018). “Zenz estimated the detainee number by extrapolating from a leaked Xinjiang police report, released by a Turkish TV station run by Uyghur exiles, as well as from reports by Radio Free Asia. CHRD and ERI made the estimate by extrapolating the percentages of people detained in villages as reported by dozens of Uyghur villagers in Kashgar Prefecture during interviews with CHRD.” (from Eradicating Ideological Viruses’: China’s Campaign of Repression Against Xinjiang’s Muslims”Human Rights Watch. 9 September 2018. Retrieved 3 January 2019.)
  2. ^ The People’s Republic, founded in 1949, banned private confessional teaching from the early 1950s to the 1980s, until a more liberal stance allowed religious mosque education to resume and private Muslim schools to open. Moreoever, except in Xinjiang for fear of secessionist feelings, the government allowed and sometimes encouraged the founding of private Muslim schools in order to provide education for people who could not attend increasingly expensive state schools or who left them early, for lack of money or lack of satisfactory achievements.[42]
  3. ^ The First East Turkestan Republic had considered the name “Uyghuristan”, with some early coins bearing that name, but settled on the “East Turkestan Republic” on the basis that there were other Turkic peoples in Xinjiang and the new government.[86]

References …

Sources

Further reading

External links

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The Pronk Pops Show 1300, August 1, 2019, Story 1: Story 1: Democrat Destruction Derby Debate 2 — Santa Claus Socialism — Vote Me and I Will Give You Free Stuff — Take Away Your Employer and Union Provided Health Care Insurance and Replace It With Socialized Medicine — Medicare For All — Give All 30-60 Million Illegal Aliens in U.S. Citizenship and Free Health Insurance and Open Borders With No Border Barrier and Abolish ICE or Immigration and Customs Enforcement — American People Betrayed By Radical Extremist Democrat Socialist (REDS) — Result: Trump Wins in A Landslide With A Message That Resonates With American People — Videos — Story 2: President Trump Comments To Big Lie Media — Videos — Student 3: Federal Reserve As Expected Reduces Federal Funds Rate By 25 Basis Points to 2.0-2.25% –Videos

Posted on August 2, 2019. Filed under: 2020 Democrat Candidates, 2020 President Candidates, 2020 Republican Candidates, Addiction, Addiction, American History, Anthropology, Banking System, Blogroll, Breaking News, Bribery, Bribes, Budgetary Policy, Cartoons, City, Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy, Comedy, Congress, Constitutional Law, Corey Booker, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Currencies, Deep State, Defense Spending, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Federal Government, First Amendment, Fiscal Policy, Fourth Amendment, Free Trade, Freedom of Speech, Government, Government Spending, Health Care Insurance, High Crimes, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Drugs, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Impeachment, Independence, Insurance, Investments, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Killing, Kirsten Gillibrand, Labor Economics, Language, Law, Legal Drugs, Legal Immigration, Life, Lying, Media, Medicare, Mental Illness, Military Spending, Monetary Policy, National Interest, News, People, Pete Buttigieg, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Progressives, Psychology, Public Corruption, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Rule of Law, Scandals, Science, Second Amendment, Security, Senate, Social Science, Social Sciences, Social Security, Sociology, Spying on American People, Subversion, Success, Surveillance and Spying On American People, Surveillance/Spying, Tax Fraud, Tax Policy, Terror, Terrorism, Trade Policy, Treason, Trump Surveillance/Spying, Tulsi Gabbard, U.S. Dollar, Unemployment, United States Constitution, United States of America, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Weapons, Welfare Spending, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Economic indicators: Interest rates remain at historically low levels, while unemployment is at the lowest point since Nixon was president.

See the source image

Story 1: Democrat Destruction Derby Debate 2, Day 2 — Santa Claus Socialism — Vote Me and I Will Give You Free Stuff — Take Away Your Employer and Union Provided Health Care Insurance and Replace It With Socialized Medicine — Medicare For All — Give All 30-60 Million Illegal Aliens in U.S. Citizenship and Free Health Insurance and Open Borders With No Border Barrier and Abolish ICE or Immigration and Customs Enforcement — American People Betrayed By Radical Extremist Democrat Socialist (REDS) — Result: Trump Wins in A Landslide With A Message That Resonates With American People — Videos

Watch Democratic Debate Highlights In Detroit 2019 Night 2 | Second Half

Democratic Presidential Debate Round 2 Day 1 Highlights | NBC New York

Watch the 9 minutes that has America searching Tulsi Gabbard

Tulsi Gabbard rips Kamala Harris’ record on criminal prosecutions

Cory Booker to Biden: You’re dipping into the Kool-Aid and don’t even know the flavor

Ari Fleischer: Democrat debates have been a display of losing ideas

CNN Democratic debate night 2

a sign on a table: It will be twice as hard for the 2020 Democrats to qualify for the next debate. In addition to the seven who already have, three are within striking distance.© Erin Schaff/The New York Times It will be twice as hard for the 2020 Democrats to qualify for the next debate. In addition to the seven who already have, three are within striking distance.The Democratic National Committee has set stricter criteria for the third set of debates, which will be held on Sept. 12 and Sept. 13 in Houston. If 10 or fewer candidates qualify, the debate will take place on only one night.

[The race is fluid, and other things we learned from the July Democratic debates.]

Candidates will need to have 130,000 unique donors and register at least 2 percent support in four polls. They have until Aug. 28 to reach those benchmarks.

 

These criteria could easily halve the field: The first two sets of debates included 20 of the 24 candidates, but a New York Times analysis of polls and donor numbers shows that only 10 to 12 candidates are likely to make the third round.

Seven candidates have already met both qualification thresholds and are guaranteed a spot on stage. They are:

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.

■ Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey

■ Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind.

■ Senator Kamala Harris of California

■ Former Representative Beto O’Rourke of Texas

■ Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont

■ Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts

Three other candidates are very close: The former housing secretary Julián Castro and the entrepreneur Andrew Yang have surpassed 130,000 donations and each have three of the four qualifying polls they need, while Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota has met the polling threshold and has about 120,000 donors.

Beyond them, only three candidates have even a single qualifying poll to their name: the impeachment activist Tom Steyer (2 polls), Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii (1) and former Gov. John Hickenlooper of Colorado (1).

We asked all three of their campaigns to provide donor numbers so we could assess where they stood. Ms. Gabbard had just under 114,000 donors as of Wednesday night. A spokesman for Mr. Steyer said he was “on track to collect the required number of donors to make the September debate stage” but did not give a number. Mr. Hickenlooper’s campaign did not respond, but Politico reported a month ago that he had only 13,000 donors.

The other 11 candidates in the race have no qualifying polls to their name, and they all went into this week’s debates seeking a viral moment that would attract new donors and lift them, even briefly, in the polls.

The qualification rules do not require enduring support. Even a small post-debate surge could push a 1 percent candidate up to 2 percent in the small handful of polls he or she needs.

But for those who have not qualified, the Aug. 28 deadline is an existential threat. Candidates like Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York or Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington could be washed out of the race if they don’t get momentum from this week’s debates. And if you’re wondering whether they’re anxious, the answer is yes.

Ms. Gabbard’s campaign calculated at one point that she needed a new donor every minute to reach 130,000 by the Aug. 28 deadline, so if you go to her website, a timer next to the donation button begins counting down 60 seconds. Then the text changes.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/only-7-candidates-have-qualified-for-the-next-democratic-debate/ar-AAFbiYl

Story 2: President Trump Comments To Big Lie Media — Videos

Trump comments on US-China tensions, upcoming Ohio rally

 

Student 3: Federal Reserve As Expected Reduces Federal Funds Rate By 25 Basis Points to 2.00%-2.25% As Economic Growth Slows Down – -Videos

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell holds news conference on interest rates | USA TODAY

Federal Reserve Lowers Interest Rates

Federal Reserve lowers interest rates

The Federal Reserve cuts rates by a quarter point

What the Fed interest rate cut means for your wallet

Fed cuts interest rates for first time since financial crisis

Trump tariffs torpedo stock market

Donald Trump rages against the Federal Reserve as it cuts interests rates by 0.25% but signals it WON’T slash them more as he has demanded – in move which sends shares plunging

  • Key interest set by the Federal Reserve is cut by 0.25 per cent for the first time since 2008, the year of the financial crisis
  • The central bank moved the target range for the federal funds rate to 2 to 2-1/4 percent, from 2 1/5 to 2 3/4
  • Move is a departure from its previous policy and comes after Trump heaped pressure on its chairman Jerome Powell to reduce cost of borrowing
  • But reserve’s committee said in statement it was acting over fears of a worldwide slowdown

Donald Trump unleashed on the Federal Reserve Wednesday afternoon after it made its first interest rate cut in more than a decade saying it was not ‘much help’ after the bank’s chairman signaled the move was a one-off reduction.

Jerome Powell sent share prices plunging as he called the 0.25 per cent cut in the key interest rate a ‘mid-cycle adjustment’ and talked down the chances of more cuts following.

The Dow Jones fell by 400 points as Powell signaled at a press conference in Washington D.C. that the cut was a one-off.

The Dow  closed down 333 points and both the NASDAQ and S&P 500 lost 1% of their value.

Donald Trump unleashed on the Federal Reserve Wednesday afternoon after it made its first interest rate cut in more than a decade saying it was not ‘much help’ after the bank’s chairman signaled the move was a one-off reduction.

Jerome Powell sent share prices plunging as he called the 0.25 per cent cut in the key interest rate a ‘mid-cycle adjustment’ and talked down the chances of more cuts following.

The Dow Jones fell by 400 points as Powell signaled at a press conference in Washington D.C. that the cut was a one-off.

The Dow  closed down 333 points and both the NASDAQ and S&P 500 lost 1% of their value.

Donald Trump unleashed on the Federal Reserve Wednesday afternoon after it made its first interest rate cut in more than a decade saying it was not ‘much help’ after the bank’s chairman signaled the move was a one-off reduction.

Jerome Powell sent share prices plunging as he called the 0.25 per cent cut in the key interest rate a ‘mid-cycle adjustment’ and talked down the chances of more cuts following.

The Dow Jones fell by 400 points as Powell signaled at a press conference in Washington D.C. that the cut was a one-off.

The Dow  closed down 333 points and both the NASDAQ and S&P 500 lost 1% of their value.

Trump used the market fall to make his case that Powell and his board should have started an ‘agressive’ series of rate cuts.

‘What the Market wanted to hear from Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve was that this was the beginning of a lengthy and aggressive rate-cutting cycle which would keep pace with China, The European Union and other countries around the world.

‘As usual, Powell let us down, but at least he is ending quantitative tightening, which shouldn’t have started in the first place – no inflation. We are winning anyway, but I am certainly not getting much help from the Federal Reserve!’

Trump had gone all-in on a call for a 0.5 per cent reduction to stimulate the U.S. economy. ‘The Fed has made all of the wrong moves. A small rate cut is not enough, but we will win anyway!’ he had tweeted on Monday.

Explanation time: Jerome Powell, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, outlined why it had cut interest rates - as the markets reacted in real time with a sell-off which reached as much as 400 points wiped off the Dow in the course of his press conference

Explanation time: Jerome Powell, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, outlined why it had cut interest rates – as the markets reacted in real time with a sell-off which reached as much as 400 points wiped off the Dow in the course of his press conference

How markets reacted: The Dow Jones closed 333 points down in a sign of concern that the rate cut was effectively a one-off - not the stimulus Trump has demanded

How markets reacted: The Dow Jones closed 333 points down in a sign of concern that the rate cut was effectively a one-off – not the stimulus Trump has demanded

President Donald Trump had all but demanded a rate-slashing, but predicted that the Fed wouldn't do 'enough' to stimulate the U.S. economy. He had heaped pressure on Jerome Powell, his own appointment as chairman, to cut the cost of borrowing.
President Donald Trump had all but demanded a rate-slashing, but predicted that the Fed wouldn't do 'enough' to stimulate the U.S. economy. He had heaped pressure on Jerome Powell, his own appointment as chairman, to cut the cost of borrowing.

President Donald Trump had all but demanded a rate-slashing, but predicted that the Fed wouldn’t do ‘enough’ to stimulate the U.S. economy. He had heaped pressure on Jerome Powell, his own appointment as chairman, to cut the cost of borrowing.

Powell and the reserve, however, defied him.

It voted that the new benchmark interest rate will fall between 2 per cent and 2.25 per cent. The Fed’s board had voted nine times since 2015 to increase it.

Eight of the Fed’s 10 board members voted to trim the short-term benchmark rate. The other two argued for leaving it as-is.

Powell, speaking in a news conference after the release of the Fed statement, characterized the rate cut as ‘a mid-cycle adjustment to policy,’ comments that do not imply sharp further cuts are on the way.

Among his messages at the press conference in Washington D.C. were that job growth was slowing and that trade tensions were bad for the economy’s outlook – but he repeatedly talked up the strength of the economy.

Explaining the cut, Powell cited global weakness and a desire to boost too-low inflation in explaining the central bank’s decision to lower borrowing costs for the first time since 2008 and move up plans to stop winnowing its massive bond holdings.

Financial markets had widely expected the Fed to reduce its key overnight lending rate by a quarter of a percentage point to a target range of 2.00% to 2.25%, but many traders expected a clearer confirmation of forthcoming rate cuts.

Instead Powell’s message was taken to mean that rates will stay where they are, prompting shares to fall.

And the value of the dollar up against other currencies, which will further anger Trump who had wanted it to fall to boost exports.

The rate cut means that consumers will find in the coming months that interest rates will fall for long-term fixed mortgages, auto loans and credit cards.

That can mean significant household savings, which Americans typically pour back into the U.S. economy through higher spending.

For those few who save their winnings in the periodic Fed lottery, however, interest rates for bank savings accounts will also likely fall.

Mortgage rates were already sliding downward before the Fed met, due to other economic factors.

Even with Wednesday’s cut, the Fed’s principal interest rate is the highest in years. But by historical standards it’s still low.

A policy statement appeared to leave the door open for the Fed to cut rates again in September as it ‘contemplates the future path of the target range for the federal funds rate.’

‘In light of the implications of global developments for the economic outlook as well as muted inflation pressures, the committee decided to lower the target range for the federal funds rate,’ the U.S. central bank said.

But Powell’s lengthy press conference appeared to close the door on that.

Wednesday’s cut is seen as an early bid to prevent a downturn in the U.S. economy that forecasters say will result from Trump’s trade war with China.

Economic indicators: Interest rates remain at historically low levels, while unemployment is at the lowest point since Nixon was president.

Economic indicators: Interest rates remain at historically low levels, while unemployment is at the lowest point since Nixon was president.

Uncertainties in global markets have paralyzed some businesses, starting what could soon be a global slowdown.

The Fed’s statement said that the U.S. labor market ‘remains strong,’ and that the domestic economy is continuing to grow ‘at a moderate rate.’ Overall inflation is running below 2 per cent.

Trump griped on July 22 that the federal funds rate, which determines how much banks – and, by extension, consumers – pay to borrow money, continued to be too high.

‘With almost no inflation, our Country is needlessly being forced to pay a MUCH higher interest rate than other countries only because of a very misguided Federal Reserve,’ he wrote then in a tweet.

On Monday he added that the Fed had previously hiked rates ‘way too early and way too much.’

Trump believes that other countries are more adept at managing the money supplies that move in and out of their financial systems, and in keeping the interest rates that drive borrowing and bond trading flexible.

He has grown increasingly impatient with Fed chairman Jerome Powell, who he believes he can replace at will.

‘I have the right to demote him. I have the right to fire him,’ the president said last month, cautioning that he had ‘never suggested’ doing so.

Any move to oust Powell would likely touch off a legal fight with major repercussions in financial markets as greater uncertainties spook traders.

U.S. economic data continues to be mixed, despite Trump’s frequent claims that he presides over a miraculous resurgence.

The unemployment rate is nearing a low point not seen in America since Richard Nixon was president and stock markets have hit repeated new records

But the nation’s manufacturing economy, which Trump promised to revitalize, has stalled in the past two quarters, and the growth of America’s economy is growing at 2.1 per cent per year – slower than the president has predicted.

The move is seen as an early bid to prevent a downturn in the U.S. economy that forecasters say will result from Trump’s trade war with China.

Uncertainties in global markets have paralyzed some businesses, starting what could soon be a global slowdown.

The Fed’s statement said that the U.S. labor market ‘remains strong,’ and that the domestic economy is continuing to grow ‘at a moderate rate.’ Overall inflation is running below 2 per cent.

Trump griped on July 22 that the federal funds rate, which determines how much banks – and, by extension, consumers – pay to borrow money, continued to be too high.

‘With almost no inflation, our Country is needlessly being forced to pay a MUCH higher interest rate than other countries only because of a very misguided Federal Reserve,’ he wrote then in a tweet.

On Monday he added that the Fed had previously hiked rates ‘way too early and way too much.’

Trump believes that other countries are more adept at managing the money supplies that move in and out of their financial systems, and in keeping the interest rates that drive borrowing and bond trading flexible.

He has grown increasingly impatient with Fed chairman Powell, who he believes he can replace at will.

‘I have the right to demote him. I have the right to fire him,’ the president said last month, cautioning that he had ‘never suggested’ doing so.

Any move to oust Powell would likely touch off a legal fight with major repercussions in financial markets as greater uncertainties spook traders.

WHY WE CUT INTEREST RATES FOR FIRST TIME IN A DECADE: WHAT THE FED SAID IN FULL TO EXPLAIN ITS MOVE

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that the labor market remains strong and that economic activity has been rising at a moderate rate. 

Job gains have been solid, on average, in recent months, and the unemployment rate has remained low. 

Although growth of household spending has picked up from earlier in the year, growth of business fixed investment has been soft. 

On a 12-month basis, overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy are running below 2 percent. 

Market-based measures of inflation compensation remain low; survey-based measures of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed.

Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability. 

In light of the implications of global developments for the economic outlook as well as muted inflation pressures, the Committee decided to lower the target range for the federal funds rate to 2 to 2-1/4 percent. 

This action supports the Committee’s view that sustained expansion of economic activity, strong labor market conditions, and inflation near the Committee’s symmetric 2 percent objective are the most likely outcomes, but uncertainties about this outlook remain. 

As the Committee contemplates the future path of the target range for the federal funds rate, it will continue to monitor the implications of incoming information for the economic outlook and will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion, with a strong labor market and inflation near its symmetric 2 percent objective.

In determining the timing and size of future adjustments to the target range for the federal funds rate, the Committee will assess realized and expected economic conditions relative to its maximum employment objective and its symmetric 2 percent inflation objective. 

This assessment will take into account a wide range of information, including measures of labor market conditions, indicators of inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and readings on financial and international developments.

The Committee will conclude the reduction of its aggregate securities holdings in the System Open Market Account in August, two months earlier than previously indicated.

Voting for the monetary policy action were Jerome H. Powell, Chair; John C. Williams, Vice Chair; Michelle W. Bowman; Lael Brainard; James Bullard; Richard H. Clarida; Charles L. Evans; and Randal K. Quarles. 

Voting against the action were Esther L. George and Eric S. Rosengren, who preferred at this meeting to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 2-1/4 to 2-1/2 percent.

Federal Open Market Committee

About the FOMC

Recent FOMC press conference

July 31, 2019

FOMC Press Conference July 31, 2019

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FOMC Transcripts and other historical materials

The term “monetary policy” refers to the actions undertaken by a central bank, such as the Federal Reserve, to influence the availability and cost of money and credit to help promote national economic goals. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 gave the Federal Reserve responsibility for setting monetary policy.

The Federal Reserve controls the three tools of monetary policy–open market operationsthe discount rate, and reserve requirements. The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System is responsible for the discount rate and reserve requirements, and the Federal Open Market Committee is responsible for open market operations. Using the three tools, the Federal Reserve influences the demand for, and supply of, balances that depository institutions hold at Federal Reserve Banks and in this way alters the federal funds rate. The federal funds rate is the interest rate at which depository institutions lend balances at the Federal Reserve to other depository institutions overnight.

Changes in the federal funds rate trigger a chain of events that affect other short-term interest rates, foreign exchange rates, long-term interest rates, the amount of money and credit, and, ultimately, a range of economic variables, including employment, output, and prices of goods and services.

Structure of the FOMC

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) consists of twelve members–the seven members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; and four of the remaining eleven Reserve Bank presidents, who serve one-year terms on a rotating basis. The rotating seats are filled from the following four groups of Banks, one Bank president from each group: Boston, Philadelphia, and Richmond; Cleveland and Chicago; Atlanta, St. Louis, and Dallas; and Minneapolis, Kansas City, and San Francisco. Nonvoting Reserve Bank presidents attend the meetings of the Committee, participate in the discussions, and contribute to the Committee’s assessment of the economy and policy options.

The FOMC holds eight regularly scheduled meetings per year. At these meetings, the Committee reviews economic and financial conditions, determines the appropriate stance of monetary policy, and assesses the risks to its long-run goals of price stability and sustainable economic growth.

For more detail on the FOMC and monetary policy, see section 2 of the brochure on the structure of the Federal Reserve Systemand chapter 2 of Purposes & Functions of the Federal Reserve System. FOMC Rules and Authorizations are also available online.

2019 Committee Members

Alternate Members

Federal Reserve Bank Rotation on the FOMC

Committee membership changes at the first regularly scheduled meeting of the year.

2020 2021 2022
Members New York
Cleveland
Philadelphia
Dallas
Minneapolis
New York
Chicago
Richmond
Atlanta
San Francisco
New York
Cleveland
Boston
St. Louis
Kansas City
Alternate
Members
New York
Chicago
Richmond
Atlanta
San Francisco
New York
Cleveland
Boston
St. Louis
Kansas City
New York
Chicago
Philadelphia
Dallas
Minneapolis

 †For the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the First Vice President is the alternate for the President. Return to table

For additional information, please use the FOMC FOIA request form.

https://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/fomc.htm

Federal Open Market Committee

Meeting calendars, statements, and minutes (2014-2019)

The FOMC holds eight regularly scheduled meetings during the year and other meetings as needed. Links to policy statements and minutes are in the calendars below. The minutes of regularly scheduled meetings are released three weeks after the date of the policy decision. Committee membership changes at the first regularly scheduled meeting of the year.

FOIA
The FOMC makes an annual report pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. The FOMC FOIA Service Center provides information about the status of FOIA requests and the FOIA process.

2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014
Next year: 2020

2019 FOMC Meetings

March
19-20*
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 10, 2019)
April/May
30-1
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 22, 2019)
June
18-19*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 10, 2019)
July
30-31
September
17-18*
October
29-30
December
10-11*

2018 FOMC Meetings

January
30-31
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released February 21, 2018)
March
20-21*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 11, 2018)
May
1-2
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 23, 2018)
June
12-13*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 05, 2018)
Jul/Aug
31-1
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released August 22, 2018)
September
25-26*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released October 17, 2018)
November
7-8
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released November 29, 2018)
December
18-19*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released January 09, 2019)

2017 FOMC Meetings

Jan/Feb
31-1
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released February 22, 2017)
March
14-15*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 05, 2017)
May
2-3
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 24, 2017)
June
13-14*
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 05, 2017)
July
25-26
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released August 16, 2017)
September
19-20*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released October 11, 2017)
Oct/Nov
31-1
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released November 22, 2017)
December
12-13*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released January 03, 2018)

2016 FOMC Meetings

January
26-27
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released February 17, 2016)
March
15-16*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 06, 2016)
April
26-27
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 18, 2016)
June
14-15*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 06, 2016)
July
26-27
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released August 17, 2016)
September
20-21*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released October 12, 2016)
November
1-2
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released November 23, 2016)
December
13-14*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released January 04, 2017)

2015 FOMC Meetings

January
27-28
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released February 18, 2015)
March
17-18*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 08, 2015)
April
28-29
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 20, 2015)
June
16-17*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 08, 2015)
July
28-29
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released August 19, 2015)
September
16-17*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released October 08, 2015)
October
27-28
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released November 18, 2015)
December
15-16*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released January 06, 2016)

2014 FOMC Meetings

January
28-29
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released February 19, 2014)
March
4 (unscheduled)

Minutes: See end of minutes of March 18-19 meeting

March
18-19*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released April 09, 2014)
April
29-30
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released May 21, 2014)
June
17-18*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released July 09, 2014)
July
29-30
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released August 20, 2014)
September
16-17*
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released October 08, 2014)
October
28-29
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released November 19, 2014)
December
16-17*
Press Conference
Projection Materials
PDF | HTML
Minutes:
PDF | HTML
(Released January 07, 2015)

2020 FOMC Meetings

January
28-29
March
17-18*
April
28-29
June
9-10*
July
28-29
September
15-16*
November
4-5
December
15-16*

Note: A two-day meeting is scheduled for January 26-27, 2021. Each meeting date is tentative until confirmed at the meeting immediately preceding it.

https://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/fomccalendars.htm

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The Pronk Pops Show 1296, July 25, 2019, Part 2 — Story 1: Black Swan Song — Pathetic Incompetent Corrupt Swamp Swan Figurehead Special Counsel Robert Swan Mueller III Exposed As Fraud — “A Man’s Got to Know His Limitations” — Corrupt Democrat Punks — “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, punk? — “Go Ahead Make My Day” — Impeach Trump — Big Lie Media and Lying Lunatic Leftist Losers Exposed — No Credibility and No Longer Trusted — No Evidence or Basis For Impeachment — Mueller “Outside My Purview”: Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — American People Will Reelect Trump for Second Term in A Landslide Victory — Case Closed — Videos — Story 2: Investigation, Indicting, Prosecuting The Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspirators — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 1232 April 1, 2019 Part 2

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Story 1: Black Swan Song — Pathetic Incompetent Corrupt Swamp Swan Figurehead Special Counsel Robert Swan Mueller III Exposed As Fraud — “A Man’s Got to Know His Limitations” — Corrupt Democrat Punks — “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, punk? — “Go Ahead Make My Day” — Impeach Trump — Big Lie Media and Lying Lunatic Leftist Losers Exposed — No Credibility and No Longer Trusted — No Evidence or Basis For Impeachment — Mueller “Outside My Purview”: Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — American People Will Reelect Trump for Second Term in A Landslide Victory — Videos

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Black Swan – Last Dance Scene (“I was perfect…”)

The Real ‘Black Swan’: Double Speaks

Magnum Force (10/10) Movie CLIP – A Man’s Got to Know His Limitations (1973) HD

A Good Man Always Has to Know His Limitations

Dirty Harry Do You ( I ) Feel Lucky Punk? ( high quality)

Dirty Harry – inadmissible

Dirty Harry Do You Feel Lucky Punk

Dirty Harry – Best Quotes, Lines (Clint Eastwood)

WATCH: Rep. Nunes calls Mueller hearing ‘spectacle” and ‘political theater’ | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Brad Wenstrup’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Ben Cline’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Guy Reschenthaler’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Debbie Lesko’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Michael Turner’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

Jim Jordan pushes Mueller on investigating ‘how the false accusations started’

Joe diGenova: The public got to see Mueller’s incompetence

Joe diGenova: IG Horowitz and John Durham Have Both Already interviewed Joseph Mifsud

Mueller’s testimony riddled with shaky moments, incomplete answers

Robert Mueller testifies before Judiciary Committees on Capitol Hill (LIVE) | USA TODAY

Robert Mueller’s full testimony to House Judiciary committee

MUELLER HEARING: House Judiciary Committee Part 1

MUELLER HEARING: House Intelligence Committee Part 2

Full: Robert Mueller Testimony To Congress, Reaction And Analysis | NBC News

Collins at Mueller hearing: I hope this brings us closure

WATCH: Rep. Steve Chabot’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Ted Lieu’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. Debbie Lesko’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

WATCH: Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

Ratcliffe Questions Former Special Counsel Mueller on Report

Representative Turner questions Mueller

WATCH: Rep. Matt Gaetz’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

Rep. Jim Jordan blasts Mueller for dodging questions

Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan presses former Special Counsel Robert Mueller on the origins of the Trump-Russia collusion investigation. Jordan says maybe a better course of action is to figure out how the false accusations started.

Rep. Gohmert grills Mueller: Did you know Strzok hated Trump?

Representative Nunes questions Mueller

WATCH: Rep. Ben Cline’s full questioning of Robert Mueller | Mueller testimony

Joe diGenova: The public got to see Mueller’s incompetence

Whitaker says it was clear Mueller didn’t have a grasp of Russia report

Tucker: Democrats believed Mueller would save America

Hannity: Mueller’s testimony was an unmitigated disaster

Ingraham: Trump beats the elites again

Jim Jordan says Dems are never going to stop going after Trump

Gowdy on Mueller: I would’ve beaten the hell out of that exoneration

Trump’s legal team takes victory lap after Mueller hearings

WATCH: Key moments from Mueller’s testimony

Takeaways and analysis of Mueller hearings

 

 

‘Disoriented’ Mueller’s stumbling responses to questions during blockbuster hearing leave social media concerned the special counsel seems a ‘confused old man’ but some think it is all a strategy to frustrate the committee members

  • Mueller faced members of the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on Wednesday morning at a highly-anticipated hearing on the Russia investigation
  • Viewers reacting on social media noticed Mueller stumbled at several points 
  • ‘Mueller is acting like he doesn’t know what’s going on,’ one viewer wrote on Twitter. ‘He’s acting like a confused old man’ 
  • Some viewers have said Mueller’s shaky demeanor calls his report into question
  • Others think the 74-year-old veteran prosecutor sounds uncertain because he is being overly-cautious about coming off as impartial
  • When it came to questions at the core of the report, Mueller has delivered firm answers without hesitation 
  • Another theory suggests the wobbly performance is a delaying tactic to frustrate Republican committee members determined to discredit the report
  • Viewers also noted that Mueller is hindered by the mammoth task of manually searching through 397 pages to effectively answer questions about the report

Perplexed viewers are questioning Robert Mueller’s ‘confused’ demeanor as he testifies in front of Congress.

The special counsel faced members of the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on Wednesday morning at a highly-anticipated hearing on the Russiainvestigation.

Viewers reacting on social media have noticed that Mueller appeared to stumble at multiple points.

‘Robert Mueller comes across as a doddering old fool with a questionable moral compass based on situational ethics who should never have been appointed in the first place based on reduced mental capacity,’ one person tweeted.

‘Mueller is acting like he doesn’t know what’s going on,’ another wrote. ‘He’s acting like a confused old man.’

Some are saying the wobbly performance is a delaying tactic on the part of the special counsel to frustrate Republican committee members determined to discredit findings that are damaging to President Donald Trump.  

When it came to questions at the core of the report, Mueller has delivered firm answers without hesitation. 

Asked whether Trump had been exonerated or if he could be charged with obstruction of justice when he leaves office, Mueller replied: ‘No’ and ‘Yes’ respectively.

‘Lots of twitter folks are dogging Mueller out for looking old and feeble,’ MSNBC’s Joy Reid tweeted. ‘But optically, that just makes the Republicans yelling at him look more absurd. Mueller is quite definitive in his one word answers, which only Dems are eliciting from him so far.’

Perplexed viewers are questioning Robert Mueller's 'confused' demeanor as he testifies in front of members of the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on Wednesday morning

Perplexed viewers are questioning Robert Mueller’s ‘confused’ demeanor as he testifies in front of members of the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on Wednesday morning

Viewers reacting on social media noticed that Mueller appeared to stumble at multiple points

 

Viewers reacting on social media noticed that Mueller appeared to stumble at multiple points

 

MSNBC's Joy Reid defended Mueller's performance, saying his answers have been effective

Several Twitter users expressed the opinion that the 74-year-old veteran prosecutor’s shaky demeanor calls his entire report into question.

‘Listening too Mueller the cracking in his voice shows clearly that he is a conflicted Skunk and lying ! And I think he is senile !’

‘As I said when Mueller gave speech in May, he is feeble,’ radio personality Mark Levin tweeted. ‘I say that not as a personal attack but as a rational observation. It’s on display today during this hearing.

‘This underscores that the person who influenced this investigation most was Andrew Weissman, his top lieutenant.’

Replying to Levin’s tweet, one man wrote: ‘Agreed, Mueller looks geriatric and lost…. find that man a time machine.’ 

‘It’s quite entertaining. Mueller can’t make a coherent statement. Looks like the circus made a stop in DC,’ a woman tweeted.

‘I’d say Democrats right now regretting they ever subpoenaed Mueller. He looks confused,’ a man wrote.

Some viewers have said Mueller's shaky demeanor calls his report into question

Some viewers have said Mueller’s shaky demeanor calls his report into question

 

 

 

 

 

Others think Mueller sounds uncertain because he is being overly-cautious about coming off as impartial.

‘I’m concerned that Mueller is so concerned with not appearing political that he is really under-performing at times by failing to clarify things that need clarification,’ one woman wrote.

‘To let crazy GOP statements stand without clarification could be interpreted as agreement.’

Some noted that Mueller is being hindered by the mammoth task of manually searching through 397 pages to effectively answer questions about the report his team took two years to compile.

He repeatedly had to ask committee members for page numbers when asked to comment on specific sections.

One woman tweeted that Mueller would have a much easier time referring to the report if he had searchable copy on a computer.

‘Give Robert Mueller a computer, he desperately needs CTRL + F,’ Vice Media VP Katie Drummond wrote.

Ironically, the copy of the report released by the Justice Department was a scanned printout and thus couldn’t be searched. Several searchable versions have cropped up in the months since then.

Unfortunately for Mueller, witnesses are not allowed to use computers during hearings.

Mueller frequently had to pause and manually search through the 397-page report to effectively answer questions from lawmakers

Mueller frequently had to pause and manually search through the 397-page report to effectively answer questions from lawmakers

 

 

 

Throughout the hearing, Democrats, who hold the majority on both committees present, worked to elicit short, definitive answers from Mueller.

House Judiciary Chairman Jerold Nadler asked him: ‘Director Mueller, the president has repeatedly claimed that your report found there was no obstruction and that it completely and totally exonerated him. But that is not what your report said, is it?

‘That is correct. That is not what the report said,’ Mueller responding.

‘Does that say there was no obstruction?’ Nadler followed up later.

‘No,’ the former special counsel said.

‘In fact, your report expressly states that it does not exonerate the president,’ Nadler told him.

‘Yes it does,’ Mueller replied.

Most of Mueller’s fumbles came in response to Republicans trying to get him to stray from his typical dry, technical explanations.

‘Where are you reading from?’ he asked one member, Rep James Sensenbrenner. ‘I am reading from my question,’ the Wisconsin Republican lawmaker told him.

Under questioning by Republican Rep Steve Chabot, Mueller didn’t show immediate familiarity with political intelligence firm Fusion GPS, a key player in the trail of the Steele Dossier, and a fixture of attention of President Trump and GOP critics of the Mueller probe.

‘When you talk about the firm that produced the Steele reporting, the name of the firm was Fusion GPS, is that correct?’

‘I’m not familiar with that,’ said Mueller.

‘That’s not a trick question. It’s Fusion GPS.’

Most of Mueller's fumbles came in response to Republicans trying to get him to stray from his typical dry, technical explanations

Ohio Republican Rep Jim Jordan sought to draw Mueller out on the surveillance warrants for former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, whose trips to Russia drew attention of investigators.

‘Director Mueller, the third FISA renewal happens a month after you’re named special counsel. What role did your office play in the third FISA renewal of Carter Page?’ Jordan asked.

‘I’m not going to talk to that,’ said Mueller.

In his prepared statement, Mueller began by defending his probe following an onslaught of attacks, and spelling out questions he will and will not answer.

He said he told his team at the start of the Russia probe to ‘work quietly, thoroughly and with integrity so that the public would have full confidence in the outcome.

‘We needed to do our work as thoroughly as possible and as expeditiously as possible. It was in the public interest for our investigation to be complete and not to last a day longer than necessary,’ Mueller said.

He said his team of lawyers and agents worked ‘fairly and with absolute integrity’ – minutes after President Trump once again attacked it as a ‘witch hunt’.

‘Our team would not leak or take other actions that would compromise the integrity of our work,’ said Mueller. ‘All decisions were made based on the facts and the law.’

Ohio Republican Rep Jim Jordan sought to draw Mueller out on the surveillance warrants for former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, whose Russia trips drew investigators' attention

Ohio Republican Rep Jim Jordan sought to draw Mueller out on the surveillance warrants for former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, whose Russia trips drew investigators’ attention

Rep Doug Collins tried to get Mueller to contradict his report by asking him whether ‘collusion’ and ‘conspiracy’ are the same thing after Mueller testified that they weren’t.

Collins cited a portion of the report that states: ‘Collusion is not a specific offense or theory of liability found in the U.S. Code; nor is it a term of art in federal criminal law. To the contrary, even as defined in legal dictionaries, collusion is largely synonymous with conspiracy as that crime is set forth in the general federal conspiracy statute.’

Mueller critics declared that the special counsel had been bested by Collins, while experts explained that Collins’ citation was taken out of context.

The part of the report in question was about collusion in the sense of corporate collusion – when companies conspire in an illegal fashion to help each other at consumers’ expense.

Corporate collusion is unrelated to ‘collusion with Russia’, the colloquial term adopted in the debate about potential cooperation between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

Both sides sought to get Mueller on record on the question of whether he had any potential conflict that would prevent him from overseeing the probe.

Georgia Democrat Rep Hank Johnson asked Mueller if he had any conflicts of interest that prevented him from being special counsel. Mueller said he did not. Trump has repeatedly said Mueller was ‘highly conflicted,’ saying he had interviewed to be his FBI director and that the two men had a nasty business dispute. 

Some people on social media lambasted Republican committee members for trying to damage Mueller’s credibility.

‘No matter your political party, it’s absolutely disgusting to see those attacking Mueller’s integrity,’ one man tweeted.

‘The way the @JudiciaryGOP members talked and yelled at Robert Mueller is beyond awful. They’ve all lost their souls,’ another wrote.

‘Republicans can’t argue the facts, so they attack the investigation and the investigators,’ another said.

‘Remember this slander of Mueller the next time you hear republicans going on about their love & respect for veterans. They will throw anyone under the bus who doesn’t toe the party line.’

Some people on social media lambasted Republican committee members for trying to damage Mueller's credibility

 

Some people on social media lambasted Republican committee members for trying to damage Mueller’s credibility

TOP 10 MUELLER TAKEAWAYS

Below are the 10 most important takeaways gleaned from Robert Mueller’s testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on Wednesday.

Mueller said all he wanted to say in his report

When Mueller finally agreed to testify before Congress – after more than two years of silence about the Russia investigation – the special counsel said he ‘would not provide information beyond that which is already public’ in the report published in April.

He stuck to that promise throughout Wednesday’s hearing, declining or deferring nearly 200 questions from committee members.

Mueller’s reasons for not answering included not wanting to speculate, being unable to detail internal Justice Department deliberations and being under orders not to broach specific topics.

Trump was paying attention 

After saying that he couldn’t be bothered to watch Mueller’s testimony, President Trump made it clear that he was tuned in as he tweeted multiple reactions to the proceedings on Wednesday.

‘I’m not going to be watching Mueller because you can’t take all those bites out of the apple,’ Trump told reporters in the Oval Office on Monday. ‘We had no collusion, no obstruction.’

Before the hearing even kicked off Trump had posted seven tweets about the hearing, echoing his go-to attacks on ‘Mueller & his band of 18 Angry Democrats’.

Over the next eight hours tweeted and retweeted 14 posts about Mueller’s testimony, including multiple videos of Republican lawmakers grilling the special counsel.

‘TRUTH IS A FORCE OF NATURE!’ he declared just after 2.30pm.

Mueller didn’t subpoena Trump to avoid a lengthy court battle  

The special counsel addressed why Trump wasn’t interviewed during the two-year-long investigation when New York Democratic Rep Sean Maloney asked him: ‘Why didn’t you subpoena the president?’

Trump’s legal team had refused to have him be interviewed in the probe because they felt such a meeting would amount to a ‘perjury trap’.

Before Congress Mueller stated that his team had ‘little success’ when pushing for an interview for over a year and decided that they didn’t want to delay the investigation with a lengthy court battle.

‘We did not want to exercise the subpoena power because of the necessity of expediting the end of the investigation,’ he said, adding that no one at the Justice Department pressured him to finish the probe.

Mueller acknowledged that Trump’s written answers to questions about possible conspiracy with Russia were ‘not as useful as the interview would be’.

Trump was not exonerated by the Russia investigation

Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat, kicked off Wednesday’s proceedings by asking Mueller directly if the Russia investigation exonerated President Trump.

‘No,’ Mueller stated without hesitation.

That goes against the president’s repeated claims that the probe proved there was ‘no obstruction, no collusion’.

Mueller’s team never determined whether Trump committed a crime

While the majority of his answers were straightforward and technical, Mueller struggled when questioned about why he did not indict the president.

During an exchanged with California Democratic Rep Ted Lieu, Mueller stated that the reason he did not even consider indicting Trump on obstruction charges was because of guidance from the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel that a sitting president cannot be indicted.

That goes against assertions by Attorney General William Barr, who has repeatedly said the OLC’s opinion was not the only reason Mueller did not indict Trump.  

Arizona Republican Rep Debbie Lesko asked Mueller to clarify that contradiction, at which point he said he ‘would have to look closer at it’. 

He later conceded that he had misspoken when he characterized the OLC’s guidance to Lieu.  

‘We did not reach a determination as to whether the President committed a crime,’ he said.

‘Based on Justice Department policy and principles of fairness, we decided we would not make a determination as to whether the president committed a crime.’

Mueller was much less steady than in previous hearings

At times, Mueller, 74, stumbled during answers, asking fast-talking lawmakers to repeat page citations and repeat their questions. He sometimes had to scan the hearing room to locate questioners.

Although his stock answer was to say issues were beyond the purview of his mandate, he also appeared not to recall specific information at times.

‘Where are you reading from?’ he asked one member, Rep. James Sensenbrenner. ‘I am reading from my question,’ the Wisconsin Republican lawmaker told him.

Under questioning by Republican Rep Steve Chabot, Mueller didn’t show immediate familiarity with political intelligence firm Fusion GPS, a key player in the trail of the Steele Dossier, and a fixture of attention of President Trump and GOP critics of the Mueller probe.

Viewers reacting on social media called out Mueller’s unsteadiness early on, remarking that he was acting ‘like a confused old man’.

Some said the wobbly performance could be a delaying tactic on the part of the special counsel to frustrate Republican committee members determined to discredit findings that are damaging to Trump.

Mueller and Trump have opposing accounts of what led up to special counsel appointment

Republicans probed Mueller’s professional links with Trump in an attempt to show he may have had a reason to be biased against the president – specifically questioning whether he was turned down for the FBI director position the day before being tapped to lead the Russia investigation.

Trump gave his version of events on Wednesday morning, tweeting: ‘It has been reported that Robert Mueller is saying that he did not apply and interview for the job of FBI Director (and get turned down) the day before he was wrongfully appointed Special Counsel.

‘Hope he doesn’t say that under oath in that we have numerous witnesses to the interview, including the Vice President of the United States!’

Mueller contradicted Trump’s account when Texas Republican Rep Louie Gohmert seized on his alleged conflicts of interest.

Gohmert asked Mueller about a meeting he had with Trump the day before the special counsel appointment and contended that it was a job interview for the FBI director slot.

Mueller stated that he was not interviewed ‘as a candidate’ for the position.

Mueller fiercely defended his team’s impartiality 

The special counsel was calm and composed throughout the proceedings, save for one moment when Florida Republican Rep Greg Steube decried the political affiliations of the lawyers on his team.

Mueller said never in his 25 years in his position had he felt the need to ask the people he works with about their political affiliation.

Rep Gohmert also called Mueller’s hiring practices into question, particularly his appointment of FBI agent Peter Strzok – who was later removed from the probe after he was found to have sent anti-Trump text messages to a woman he was involved with.   

Mueller said he did not know of Strzok’s disdain for Trump before the probe started and learned about it in the summer of 2017, several months into the investigation.

Republicans tried to collect evidence for a probe into Mueller’s investigation

Republicans committee members tried both the blast the origins of the Russia probe and potentially establish a record that might play out in an ongoing investigation overseen by Attorney General William Barr.

‘Before you arrested [Trump campaign foreign policy aide] George Papadopoulos in July of 2017, he was given $10,000 in ash in Israel. Do you know who gave him that cash?’ California Rep Devin Nunes asked Mueller.

‘Again, that’s outside our … questions such as that should go to the FBI or the department,’ said Mueller.

‘But it involved your investigation,’ said Nunes.

‘It involved persons involved in my investigation,’ said Mueller.

Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow released a statement saying: ‘This morning’s testimony exposed the troubling deficiencies of the Special Counsel’s investigation. The testimony revealed that this probe was conducted by a small group of politically-biased prosecutors who, as hard as they tried, were unable to establish either obstruction, conspiracy, or collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. It is also clear that the Special Counsel conducted his two-year investigation unimpeded. The American people understand that this issue is over. They also understand that the case is closed.’ 

Democrats tried to breathe life into a dense, technical report

The Democrats, who hold a majority on both committees, made a concerted effort to present the investigation’s findings in a more provocative and damning light than they had been in the dense, 337-page report.

‘Your investigation determined that the Trump campaign — including Trump himself — knew that a foreign power was intervening in our election and welcomed it, built Russian meddling into their strategy, and used it,’ California Rep Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chair, said when the afternoon portion began.

‘Disloyalty to country. Those are strong words, but how else are we to describe a presidential campaign which did not inform the authorities of a foreign offer of dirt on their opponent, which did not publicly shun it, or turn it away, but which instead invited it, encouraged it, and made full use of it?’ Schiff continued.

‘That disloyalty may not have been criminal. Constrained by uncooperative witnesses, the destruction of documents and the use of encrypted communications, your team was not able to establish each of the elements of the crime of conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt, so not a provable crime, in any event’, he added.

However, a levelheaded Mueller didn’t play along, making for a rather mundane hearing.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7281303/Muellers-stumbling-responses-blockbuster-hearing-leave-social-media-concerned.html

 

 

Here’s Why Mueller Kept Getting Asked About a Mysterious Maltese Professor

BY VERA BERGENGRUEN 

JULY 24, 2019

In a moment that quickly made the rounds on conservative media on Wednesday, Rep. Jim Jordan sharply questioned Robert Mueller on the origins of the counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia.

The Ohio Republican pressed the former special counsel to detail who told George Papadopoulos, a young foreign policy aide on the Trump campaign, that the Russians had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. When Mueller said he would not go into it, Jordan became heated.

“Yes you can, because you wrote about it – you gave us the answer!” Jordan said. “Joseph Mifsud.”

The name of the shadowy Maltese academic kept coming up on Wednesday as Republicans accused Mueller of covering up how the FBI came to investigate the Trump campaign’s alleged ties to Russia, a popular talking point for Trump allies. At the House Intelligence Committee hearing, Rep. Devin Nunes pointed to a large photo of Mifsud with then-U.K. foreign secretary Boris Johnson as evidence that he “has extensive contacts with Western governments and the FBI”.

Mifsud’s name would have been familiar for regular consumers of Fox News and conservative outlets that have spent two years dissecting what they believe was a “deep state” attempt to take down the Trump campaign. The London-based professor at the center of the Trump-Russia probe has not been seen in public since October 2017, just days after Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his interactions with him. One of those was a key conversation in London in April 2016, in which Mifsud told him the Russians had damaging information on Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails.” Mifsud also introduced him to a Russian graduate student that Papadopoulos believed to be Putin’s niece, and connected him with an official with ties to the Russian foreign ministry who said he could set up a meeting with the country’s ambassador, according to Mueller’s report. Papadopoulos later relayed that information to an Australian diplomat, Alexander Downer, who passed it on to U.S. government officials, setting into motion the FBI investigation into Russian contacts with the Trump campaign.

Papadopoulos’ interactions with Mifsud, and his allegation that the Maltese professor was an FBI plant, has been at the center of some Republicans’ efforts to discredit Mueller’s probe. Papadopoulos told TIME in May that he believes he was part of an elaborate set-up by U.S. intelligence to sabotage Trump’s presidential campaign. Since serving a short sentence for lying to the FBI, Papadopoulos has continued to make the rounds alleging that Mifsud was a “Western intelligence operative” who tried to use him to entrap the Trump campaign.

“People are very fascinated about what I have to say, people are just like — their mouths are dropping,” he told TIME on April 17. “They’ve never heard this information because Mueller and the FBI wanted to keep me silenced.”

Perhaps anticipating this line of questioning, Mueller made it clear in his opening statement that he would be “unable to address questions about the opening of the FBI’s Russia investigation” because it is the subject of an ongoing review by the Justice Department.

That did not stop Jordan and Nunes, both vocal Trump supporters, from trying.

“He’s the guy who starts it all, and when the FBI interviews him, he lies three times and yet you don’t charge him with a crime,” Jordan exclaimed, angrily listing others charged by Mueller, including Michael Flynn and “13 Russians no one’s ever heard of.”

“But the guy who puts the country through this whole saga, starts it off, for three years we have lived this now, he lies and you guys don’t charge him,” he said.

“I’m not sure I agree with your characterization,” Mueller tersely responded, but Jordan’s performance was already going viral in conservative corners of the internet with headlines like “WATCH: Jim Jordan Steals the Show, Calls into Question Entire Basis of Probe!” and “‘BRUTAL’: Jim Jordan grills Mueller about why ‘guy who put this whole story in motion’ lied but wasn’t held accountable.” On Wednesday afternoon, Trump himself retweeted a clip of the exchange, indicating that Mifsud is unlikely to fade from the debate over the Russia investigation.

 

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