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The Pronk Pops Show 1181, December 4, 2018, Story 1: Revolt of the Yellow Vests Against French Elites Carbon Tax — Political Climate Changing — Revolt of The People Against Their Political Elitist Establishment Controlled Governments — Videos — Story 2: People and Nationalism Against The Globalism New World Order– Revolt of The Masses — Story 3: German Elite’s Mass Immigration Crisis — German People Vs. Political Elites — Nationalism vs. Globalism — Freedom vs. Tyranny — Videos — Story 4: United Nation’s Panel Proposes That Criticisms of Mass Migration Policies  Will Be A Criminal Offense — Crushing Dissent — Migration is Not A Human Right — Video

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1181 December 4, 2018

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Pronk Pops Show 1176 November 19, 2018

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Story 1: Revolt and Riots of the Yellow Vests Against French Elite’s Carbon Tax — Political Climate Changing — Revolt of The People Against Their Political Elitist Establishment Controlled Governments — Videos

See the source imageclimatefactors

Anti-Macron riots in Paris turn deadly

France protests: What is the Yellow Vests movement?

France’s Yellow Vest Protesters Just Won Against Macron (HBO)

Macron Attacks Nationalism | Wants EU Army | The Most Dangerous Man In Europe

Why Macron is loathed by many in France

France’s ‘Yellow Vest’ Protests Escalate to Teargas & Rubber Bullets

The Paris Climate Fraud

Global Warming

Manfred Mann – Blinded by the Light

Climate Change in 12 Minutes – The Skeptic’s Case

What They Haven’t Told You about Climate Change

Do 97% of Climate Scientists Really Agree?

Consensus on Consensus

Debunking the Climate Consensus

Lord Christopher Monckton – Global Warming is a Hoax

How Climate Scientists Predict the Future

Can Climate Models Predict Climate Change?

See the source imageSee the source image

See the source image

]

The Great Global Warming Swindle – Full Documentary HD

Richard Lindzen ICCC4

 

Alarming Global Warming: What Happens to Science in the Public Square. Richard S. Lindzen, Ph.D.

From DDP 30th Annual Meeting, July 2012. Professor Lindzen is a dynamical meteorologist with interests in the broad topics of climate, planetary waves, monsoon meteorology, planetary atmospheres, and hydrodynamic instability.

His research involves studies of the role of the tropics in mid-latitude weather and global heat transport, the moisture budget and its role in global change, the
origins of ice ages, seasonal effects in atmospheric transport, stratospheric waves, and the observational determination of climate sensitivity.

He has made major contributions to the development of the current theory for the Hadley Circulation, which dominates the atmospheric transport of heat and momentum from the tropics to higher latitudes, and has advanced the understanding of the role of small scale gravity waves in producing the reversal of global temperature gradients at the mesopause, and provided accepted explanations for atmospheric tides and the quasi-biennial oscillation of the tropical stratosphere. He pioneered the study of how ozone photochemistry, radiative transfer, and dynamics interact with each other. He is currently studying what determines the pole-to-equator temperature difference, the nonlinear equilibration of baroclinic instability, and the contribution of such instabilities to global heat transport.

He has also been developing a new approach to air-sea interaction in the tropics, and is actively involved in parameterizing the role of cumulus convection in heating and drying the atmosphere and in generating upper level cirrus clouds. He has developed models for the Earths climate with specific concern for the stability of the ice caps, the sensitivity to increases in CO2, the origin of the 100,000-year cycle in glaciation, and the maintenance of regional variations in climate. Prof. Lindzen is a recipient of the AMSs Meisinger and Charney Awards, the AGUs Macelwane Medal, and the Leo Huss Walin Prize. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Meteorological Society.

He is a corresponding member of the NAS Committee on Human Rights, and has been a member of the NRC Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate and the Council of the AMS. He has also been a consultant to the Global Modeling and Simulation Group at NASAs Goddard Space Flight Center, and a Distinguished Visiting Scientist at California Institute of Technologys Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He earned a Ph.D. at Harvard University.From DDP 30th Annual Meeting, July 2012. Professor Lindzen is a dynamical meteorologist with interests in the broad topics of climate, planetary waves, monsoon meteorology, planetary atmospheres, and hydrodynamic instability.

His research involves studies of the role of the tropics in mid-latitude weather and global heat transport, the moisture budget and its role in global change, the origins of ice ages, seasonal effects in atmospheric transport, stratospheric waves, and the observational determination of climate sensitivity. He has made major contributions to the development of the current theory for the Hadley Circulation, which dominates the atmospheric transport of heat and momentum from the tropics to higher latitudes, and has advanced the understanding of the role of small scale gravity waves in producing the reversal of global temperature gradients at the mesopause, and provided accepted explanations for atmospheric tides and the quasi-biennial oscillation of the tropical stratosphere. He pioneered the study of how ozone photochemistry, radiative transfer, and dynamics interact with each other. He is currently studying what determines the pole-to-equator temperature difference, the nonlinear equilibration of baroclinic instability, and the contribution of such instabilities to global heat transport.

He has also been developing a new approach to air-sea interaction in the tropics, and is actively involved in parameterizing the role of cumulus convection in heating and drying the atmosphere and in generating upper level cirrus clouds. He has developed models for the Earths climate with specific concern for the stability of the ice caps, the sensitivity to increases in CO2, the origin of the 100,000-year cycle in glaciation, and the maintenance of regional variations in climate.

Prof. Lindzen is a recipient of the AMSs Meisinger and Charney Awards, the AGUs Macelwane Medal, and the Leo Huss Walin Prize. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Meteorological Society. He is a corresponding member of the NAS Committee on Human Rights, and has been a member of the NRC B

 

Macron Blinks in Fuel-Tax Dispute With Yellow Vests

Grass-roots movement ‘gilets jaunes’ led violent protests in the heart of Paris, pressuring him to back down on key piece of his economic overhaul

Protesters wave flares and French flags near the Arc de Triomphe during a demonstration over high fuel prices on the Champs-Élysèe in Paris.
Protesters wave flares and French flags near the Arc de Triomphe during a demonstration over high fuel prices on the Champs-Élysèe in Paris.PHOTO: YOAN VALAT/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK/EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

PARIS—French President Emmanuel Macron suffered the first major setback in his push to overhaul the French economy, backing off a fuel-tax increase that enraged much of the nation and sparked a grass-roots protest movement against his government.

Faced with another weekend of destructive protests by the gilets jaunes—or yellow vests—Prime Minister Édouard Philippe told a press conference on Tuesday that the tax increase would be pushed back six months to allow for public discussion. The worst riots to hit Paris in decades erupted during antigovernment protests on Saturday, leaving the city’s shopping and tourist center dotted with burning cars and damaged storefronts. Protesters vandalized the Arc de Triomphe, rattling Mr. Macron’s administration and the country.

“No tax is worth threatening the unity of the nation,” Mr. Philippe said.

The protests have become a test of Mr. Macron’s resolve to forge ahead with his broader agenda, particularly his plans to make France more business-friendly. The concession marked the first time the Macron government has blinked since the former investment banker took office in the spring of 2017.

Mr. Macron won the presidency on a platform that promised to make the French economy more competitive while also cutting pollution and preserving the nation’s generous social protections. His proposals included reduced jobs protections for workers, higher fuel taxes, cutting red tape for businesses and a repeal of much of France’s wealth tax.

The French leader has eschewed the consensus-building approach of his predecessors. Instead, he wielded his executive powers and his large majority in Parliament to defy the political opposition, unions and other groups.

In recent months, however, Mr. Macron’s approval ratings have plummeted and lawmakers in his own party have urged him to offer concessions as the gilets jaunes protests have mounted. Polls show that more than 70% of the public supports the demonstrators.

It remained unclear whether the delay was enough to thaw tensions. On social media, gilets jaunes were preparing to protest for a fourth consecutive weekend.

“It’s a small victory because he is finally backing down,” said David Roig, a 29-year-old taxi driver. “But what we want isn’t a delay. It’s the cancellation of the planned tax increase.”

France’s ‘Yellow Vests’ Protests Rage at President Macron
France’s ‘Yellow Vests’ Protests Rage at President Macron
The gilets jaunes — or yellow vests — movement started as a protest against higher fuel taxes but it has become a rallying cry against President Emmanuel Macron’s economic policies. Their latest demonstration resulted in riots in Paris that led to hundreds of arrests and injuries. Image: AFP/Getty

Mr. Macron has much left to accomplish from his agenda. In a speech to his ministers in November, he set the goal of making France “an environmental power of the 21st century.” He is also planning overhauls of the country’s pension system and schools, along with the elimination of tens of thousands of civil-service posts.

Mr. Macron’s agenda also suffered a setback on Tuesday in Brussels, where eurozone finance ministers refused to back French proposals for a sweeping overhaul of the bloc. Mr. Macron made shoring up the currency area a centerpiece of his campaign to prevent a repeat of the crisis that nearly tore the eurozone apart several years ago.

The finance ministers agreed on several measures Mr. Macron backed, including using the eurozone’s bailout fund as a backstop to resolve failing banks and an easing of terms for governments to borrow from the fund.

But there was no deal on a common eurozone budget to fund government spending in nations hit with economic downturns, a goal of Mr. Macron’s. Nations such as the Netherlands and Finland oppose pooling their taxpayers’ money for such purposes. Ministers agreed only that work could start on designing a budget to improve the bloc’s competitiveness and to help poorer economies converge with wealthier ones. The size of that budget has yet to be discussed.

“We would have liked to go further,” said French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, “but we knew that for certain governments, this wasn’t possible.”

The gilets jaunes movement largely has rebuffed the government’s appeals to negotiate, discouraging any representatives from sitting down with officials. A few gilets jaunes who were preparing to meet with Mr. Philippe on Tuesday canceled after receiving threats from more radical factions of the movement.

The protests have exposed the weakness hidden behind Mr. Macron’s large victory over far-right opponent Marine Le Pen. He assembled a winning coalition of centrist voters, but just 42% of registered voters backed Mr. Macron as unprecedented numbers of French left their ballots blank or abstained. Many gilets jaunes come from this segment of the French electorate, deeply skeptical of his centrist, business-friendly policies.

While the fuel-tax proposal spawned the gilets jaunes, the movement has since embraced a broader antigovernment agenda, accusing Mr. Macron of being a champion of the rich at the expense of the working class.

The tax proposal, aimed at simultaneously raising revenue and cutting automobile pollution, was a hallmark of Mr. Macron’s technocratic leadership style. Economists say such consumption taxes that reduce pollution and other harmful effects are an efficient way for the government to raise revenue.

That approach, however, alienated swaths of French people who live in rural and suburban areas and rely on their cars to reach their jobs in city centers. It also compounded the public’s perception that rural France has borne the brunt of globalization’s impact, as forces such as e-commerce and big-box retail have left villages and towns hollowed out.

The result: Hundreds of thousands of people flocked to Paris and other cities around France, blocking roads, clashing with police and demanding Mr. Macron’s resignation.

On Tuesday, Mr. Philippe called for a nationwide “consultation” to discuss fiscal policy and public services outside of major cities. He also said there wouldn’t be any increases in the price of natural gas and electricity over the same six-month period.

“The government has made proposals,” Mr. Philippe said. “Let’s talk about it. Let’s improve them, complete them, I am ready for it.”

https://www.wsj.com/articles/france-to-delay-fuel-tax-increase-after-violent-protests-1543925246

Story 2: People and Nationalism vs.  The Political Elites’  New World Order of Globalism — Revolt of The Masses — Videos

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Alex Jones SHOW MONDAY 12.3.18 | Alex Jones SHOW DECEMBER 3 2018

Story 3: German Elite’s Mass Immigration Crisis — German People Vs. Political Elites — Nationalism vs. Globalism — Freedom vs. Tyranny — Videos

The Suicide of Europe

Is Europe Doomed?

Is Population Decline Catastrophic?

What Is a Globalist?

Who Are the Real Fascists?

Trump, Hitler, and the Millennial Hero Complex

 Reasons Left Wing Protests are a Joke

The Problem With Libertarians

Lauren Southern on Islam and Immigration in Europe (Pt. 2)

‘Why Would She Do THIS To Her Country??’ – Tucker Carlson Calls Out German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Volatile anti-migrant protests gripping Germany

Could Germany’s migration problem be Merkel’s downfall?

Inside Germany’s refugee crisis

Germany migration crisis

Bavaria tightens borders amid German rethink on migrants

‘Migration Is Not a Fundamental Human Right’ — Breitbart Interviews Hungarian FM Péter Szijjártó

Tommy Robinson: Germany Fights Back!

UK activist Tommy Robinson speaks out after prison release

Crime spike in Germany puts pressure on immigration policy

Published on Feb 7, 2018

How Muslim immigration has roiled Europe

Published on Dec 20, 2016

Alternative for Germany (German: Alternative für DeutschlandAfD) is a right-wing[18] to far-right[17] political party in Germany. Founded in April 2013, the AfD narrowly missed the 5% electoral threshold to sit in the Bundestag during the 2013 federal election. In 2014 the party won seven seats in the European election as a member of the European Conservatives and Reformists. After securing representation in 14 of the 16 German state parliaments by October 2017, the AfD became the third-largest party in Germany after the 2017 federal election, claiming 94 seats in the Bundestag, a major breakthrough for the party as it was the first time the AfD had won any seats in the Bundestag. The party is chaired by Jörg Meuthen; its lead candidates in the 2017 elections were AfD Co-Vice Chairman Alexander Gauland and Alice Weidel who now serves as the party group leader in the Bundestag. Since 2017, AfD is the largest opposition party in the Bundestag.

The party has been described as a German nationalist,[2][3][4] right-wing populist,[19] and Eurosceptic[6] party. Since about 2015, the AfD has been increasingly open to working with far-right extremist groups such as Pegida.[20] Parts of the AfD have racist,[21] Islamophobic,[22] anti-Semitic[23][24] and xenophobic[11][25][26] tendencies linked to far-right movements such as neo-Nazism[27][24] and identitarianism.[28][29]

Contents

History

Founding

In September 2012, Alexander GaulandBernd Lucke, and journalist Konrad Adam, founded the political group Electoral Alternative 2013 (GermanWahlalternative 2013) in Bad Nauheim, to oppose German federal policies concerning the eurozone crisis. Their manifesto was endorsed by several economists, journalists, and business leaders, and stated that the eurozone had proven to be “unsuitable” as a currency area and that southern European states were “sinking into poverty under the competitive pressure of the euro”.[30]

“Wahlalternative 2013” logo

Some candidates of what would become the AfD sought election in Lower Saxony as part of the Electoral Alternative 2013 in alliance with the Free Voters, an association participating in local elections without specific federal or foreign policies, and received 1% of the vote.[30][31] In February 2013 the group decided to found a new party to compete in the 2013 federal elections. The Free Voters leadership declined to join forces, according to a leaked email from Bernd Lucke.[32] Advocating the abolition of the Euro, Alternative for Germany (AfD) took a more radical stance than the Free Voters.[33] Likewise, the Pirate Party of Germany opposed any coalition with the AfD at their 2013 spring convention.[34]

Konrad Adam (left), Frauke Petry and Bernd Lucke during the first AfD convention on 14 April 2013 in Berlin

The AfD’s initial supporters were the same prominent economists, business leaders and journalists who had supported the Electoral Alternative 2013, including former members of the Christian Democratic Union, who had previously challenged the constitutionality of the German government’s eurozone policies at the Federal Constitutional Court.[35][36]

Second vote share percentage for AfD in the 2013 federal election in Germany, final results

On 14 April 2013, the AfD announced its presence to the wider public when it held its first convention in Berlin, elected the party leadership and adopted a party platform. Bernd Lucke,[37] entrepreneur Frauke Petry and Konrad Adam were elected as speakers.[38] The AfD federal board also chose three deputy speakers, Alexander Gauland, Roland Klaus and Patricia Casale. The party elected treasurer Norbert Stenzel and the three assessors Irina Smirnova, Beatrix Diefenbach and Wolf-Joachim Schünemann. The economist Joachim Starbatty, along with Jörn KruseHelga LuckenbachDirk Meyer and Roland Vaubel were elected to the party’s scientific advisory board. Between 31 March and 12 May 2013 the AfD founded affiliates in all 16 German states in order to participate in the federal elections. On 15 June 2013 the Young Alternative for Germany was founded in Darmstadt as the AfD’s youth organisation.[39] In April 2013, during David Cameron‘s visit to Germany, the British Conservative Party was reported to have contacted both AfD and the Free Voters to discuss possible cooperation, supported by the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group of the European Parliament.[40] In June 2013, Bernd Lucke gave a question and answer session organised by the Conservative Party-allied Bruges Group think tank in Portcullis House, London.[41] In a detailed report in the conservative Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in April 2013, the paper’s Berlin-based political correspondent Majid Sattar revealed that the SPD and CDU had conducted opposition research to blunt the growth and attraction of the AfD.[42]

The party was created by Bernd Lucke, Alexander Gauland, and Konrad Adam to confront German-supported bailouts for poorer southern European countries.[43]

2013 federal election

On 22 September 2013, the AfD won 4.7% of the votes in the 2013 federal election, missing the 5% barrier to enter the Bundestag. The party won about 2 million party list votes and 810,000 constituency votes, which was 1.9% of the total of these votes cast across Germany.[44]

2013 state elections

The AfD did not participate in the 2013 Bavaria state election held on 15 September 2013. The AfD gained its first representation in the state parliament of Hesse with the defection of Jochen Paulus from the Free Democratic Party (FDP) to the AfD in early May 2013,[45] who was not re-elected and left office in January 2014.[46] In the 2013 Hesse state election held on 22 September 2013, the same day as the 2013 federal election, the AfD failed to gain representation in the parliament with 4.0% of the vote.

2014 European Parliament election

Former “Courage [to stand up] for the truth! The euro is dividing Europe!” tagline on election placard 2013

In early 2014, the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany ruled the proposed 3% vote hurdle for representation in the European elections unconstitutional, and the 2014 European Parliament election became the first run in Germany without a barrier for representation.[47]

The AfD held a party conference on 25 January 2014 at Frankenstolz ArenaAschaffenburg, northwest Bavaria. The conference chose the slogan Mut zu Deutschland (“Courage [to stand up] for Germany”) to replace the former slogan Mut zur Wahrheit (lit. “Courage [to speak] the truth” or, more succinctly, “Telling it as it is”),[48] which prompted disagreement among the federal board that the party could be seen as too anti-European. Eventually a compromise was reached by using the slogan “MUT ZU D*EU*TSCHLAND, with the “EU” in “DEUTSCHLAND” encircled by the 12 stars of the European flag.[49] The conference elected the top six candidates for the European elections on 26 January 2014 and met again the following weekend to choose the remaining euro candidates.[48][49][50] Candidates from 7th–28th place on the party list were selected in Berlin on 1 February.[51] Party chairman Bernd Lucke was elected as lead candidate.

In February 2014, AfD officials said they had discussed alliances with Britain’s anti-EU UK Independence Party (UKIP), which Bernd Lucke and the federal board of AfD opposed, and also with the ECR group, to which the British Conservative Party belongs.[52] In April 2014 Hans-Olaf Henkel, AfD’s second candidate on the European election list, ruled out forming a group with UKIP after the 2014 European election.[53] stating that he saw the British Conservatives as the preferred partner in the European Parliament.[53] On 10 May 2014 Bernd Lucke had been in talks with the Czech and Polish member parties of ECR group.[54]

In the 25 May 2014 European election, the AfD came in fifth place in Germany, with 7.1% of the national vote (2,065,162 votes), and seven members of the EU parliament.[55] On 12 June 2014 it was announced that the AfD had been accepted into the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group in the European Parliament.[56] The official vote result was not released to the public, but figures of 29 votes for and 26 against were reported by the membership.[56]

2014 state elections

On 31 August 2014, the AfD scored 9.7% of the vote in the Saxony state election,[57] winning 14 seats in the Landtag of Saxony.[58] and on 14 September 2014 they obtained 10.6% of the vote in the Thuringian and 12.2% in the Brandenburg state election, winning 11 seats in both state parliaments.[59]

2015 state elections

On 15 February 2015 AfD won 6.1% of the vote in the 2015 Hamburg state election, gaining the mandate for eight seats in the Hamburg Parliament,[60] winning their first seats in a western German state.

On 10 May the AfD secured in the 5.5% of the vote in the Bremen state election, 2015 gaining representation in their 5th state parliament on a 50% turnout.[61]

Petry assumes leadership, Lucke quits

After months of factional infighting and a cancelled party gathering in June 2015, on 4 July 2015 Frauke Petry was elected as the de facto principal speaker of the party with 60% of the member votes ahead of Bernd Lucke at a party congress in Essen.[62] Petry was a member of the national-conservative faction of the AfD.[63] Her leadership was widely seen as heralding a shift of the party to the right, to focus more on issues such as migration, Islam and strengthening ties to Russia,[64] a shift which was claimed by Lucke as turning the party into a “Pegidaparty”.[65] In the following week, five MEPs exited the party on 7 July, the only remaining MEPs being Beatrix von Storch and Marcus Pretzell[66] and on 8 July 2015, Lucke announced that he was resigning from the AfD, citing the rise of xenophobic and pro-Russian sentiments in the party.[67] At a meeting of members of the Wake-up call (Weckruf 2015) group on 19 July 2015, the founder of the AfD Bernd Lucke and former AfD members announced they would form a new party, the Alliance for Progress and Renewal (ALFA), under the founding principles of the AfD.[68]

Co-operation with FPÖ and exclusion from ECR group

In February 2016, the AfD announced a cooperation pact with the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ).[69] On 8 March 2016, the bureau of the ECR Group began motions to exclude the AfD from their group due to its links with the far-right FPÖ,[70] inviting the two remaining AfD MEPs to leave the group by 31 March, with a motion of exclusion to be tabled on 12 April if they refuse to leave voluntarily.[71] While MEP Beatrix von Storch left the ECR group on 8 April to join the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group,[72][73] Marcus Pretzell let himself be expelled on 12 April 2016.[74]

2016 state elections

With the migrant debate remaining the dominant national issue, on 13 March 2016 elections held in the three states of Baden-WürttembergRhineland-Palatinate and Saxony-Anhalt saw the AfD receiving double-digit percentages of the vote in all three states.[75][76] In the 2016 Saxony-Anhalt state election, the AfD reached second place in the Landtag, receiving 24.2% of the vote. In the 2016 Baden-Württemberg state election, the AfD achieved third place with 15.1% of the vote. In the 2016 Rhineland-Palatinate state election, the AfD again reached third place with 12.6% of the vote. In Angela Merkel‘s home state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern her CDU was beaten into third place following a strong showing of the AfD who contested at state level for the first time, to claim the second-highest polling with 20.8% of the vote in the 2016 Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state election.[77][78] However AfD voter support in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania appears to have come from both left and right wing parties with support for the SPD down 4.9%, CDU down 4.1%, The Leftdown 5.2%, Alliance ’90/The Greens down 3.9% and support for the National Democratic Party of Germany halved, dropping 3.0%. Rising support for the AfD meant that The Greens and the NDP failed to reach the 5% threshold to qualify for seats in the Landtag of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and consequently lost their seats. In the 2016 Berlin state election, which the AfD also contested for the first time,[79] they achieved a vote of 14.2%, making them the fifth largest party represented in the state assembly. Their vote seems to have come equally from the SPD and CDU, whose votes declined 6.7% and 5.7% respectively.[80]

2016 party congress

At the party congress held on 30 April to 1 May 2016, the AfD adopted a policy platform based upon opposition to Islam, calling for the ban of Islamic symbols including burkhasminarets and the call to prayer, using the slogan “Islam is not a part of Germany”.[81][82][83][84]

2017 federal election

Second vote share percentage for AfD in the 2017 federal election in Germany, final results

National party convention in Cologne in April 2017

At the party conference in April 2017, Frauke Petry announced that she would not run as the party’s main candidate for the 2017 federal election. This announcement grew out of internal power struggle as the party’s support had fallen in polls from 15% in the summer of 2016 to 7% just before the conference. Björn Höcke from the far-right wing of the party and Petry were attempting to push each other out of the party. Petry’s decision was partly seen as a step to avoid a vote at the conference on the issue of her standing.[85] The party chose Alexander Gauland, a stark conservative who worked as an editor and was a former member of the CDU,[86] to lead the party in the elections. Gauland supported the retention of Höcke’s party membership. Alice Weidel, who is perceived as more moderate and neoliberal, was elected as his running mate.[87] The party approved a platform that, according to The Wall Street Journal: “urges Germany to close its borders to asylum applicants, end sanctions on Russia and to leave the EU if Berlin fails to retrieve national sovereignty from Brussels, as well as to amend the country’s constitution to allow people born to non-German parents to have their German citizenship revoked if they commit serious crimes.[87]

In the 2017 German federal elections the AfD won 12.6% of the vote and received 94 seats; this was the first time it had won seats in the Bundestag.[88][89] At a press conference held by AfD the day after the election, Petry said that she would participate in the Bundestag as an independent; she said she did this because extremist statements by some members made it impossible for AfD to function as a constructive opposition, and to make clear to voters that there is internal dissent in the AfD. She also said that she would be leaving the party at some future date.[90][91] Four members of the AfD in the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania legislature also left the AfD to form their own group.[90]

Ideology and policies

The AfD was founded as a centre-right conservative party of the middle class with a tendency toward ‘soft’ Euroscepticism, being generally supportive of Germany’s membership in the European Union but critical of further European integration, the existence of the euro currency, and the bailouts by the eurozone for countries such as Greece.[92][93][94] At that time, the party also advocated support for Swiss-style direct democracy, dissolution of the Eurozoneopposition to immigration, and opposed gay marriage.[15]

By May 2015, the party became polarised into two factions, one centred around Lucke and his core economic policies and another group led by Petry, which favoured an anti-immigration approach. The result was that Lucke’s faction left to found a new party: the Alliance for Progress and Renewal,[95] later renamed the Liberal Conservative Reformers in November 2016. AfD also supports the privatization of social programs and state owned enterprises.[96][97]

German nationalism

The party was founded on opposition to Germany’s financial support of other Eurozone states and the third main point of its initial platform called for Germany to cede no further elements of its sovereignty to the EU without approval via a referendum.[30] Over time, a focus on German nationalism, on reclaiming Germany’s sovereignty and national pride, especially in repudiation to Germany’s culture of shame with regard to its Nazi past, became more central in AfD’s ideology and a central plank in its populist appeals.[2][3][4] For example, Petry, who led the moderate wing of the party, said that Germany should reclaim the German word “völkisch” from its Nazi connotations,[98] while Höcke, who is an example of the more right-wing views, regularly speaks of the “Fatherland” and “Volk.”[2] In January 2017, Höcke drew heavy criticism for a speech in which he stated, in reference to the Berlin Holocaust Memorial, “Germans are the only people in the world who plant a monument of shame in the heart of the capital,” and criticized the “laughable policy of coming to terms with the past.”[99][100] Höcke continued that Germany should make a “180 degree” turn with regard to its sense of national pride.[2]

The party also describes German national identity as under threat both from European integration and from the presence and accommodation of immigrants and refugees within Germany; its anti-immigration message is often articulated in this way, especially with regard to Islam.[3][4]

Homosexuality and feminism

According to its interim electoral manifesto, the party is against same-sex marriage and favours civil unions. The party is also against adoption for same-sex couples.[101] The left-leaning newspaper Die Tageszeitung described the group as advocating ‘old gender roles’.[102] Wolfgang Gedeon, an elected AfD representative, has included feminism, along with “sexualism,” and “migrationism”, in an ideology he calls “green communism” that he opposes, and argues for family values as part of German identity.[103] As AfD has campaigned for traditional roles for women, it has aligned itself with groups opposed to modern feminism.[104] The youth wing of the party has used social media to campaign against aspects of modern feminism, with the support of party leadership.[105]

Environment

The party has a platform of climate change scepticism,[101][106] and therefore criticizes the energy transformation policies (Energiewende) that have promoted renewable energy. The party wants to restrict “uncontrolled expansion of wind energy”, for instance.[101]

Conscription

AfD wants a reinstatement of conscription, starting for men at the age of 18.[107][101]

Foreign policy

In foreign policy, as of 2015 the party platform was pro-NATO, pro-United States and largely pro-Israel,[10][108] but the party was significantly divided on whether to support Russia, and had opposed sanctions on Russia supported by NATO and the United States.[109] It is also divided on free trade agreements.[109]

Membership

membership numbers
2013 17,687[110]
2014 20,728[110]
2015 16,385[110]
2016 26,409[110]
2017 29,000[111]
2018 31,000[111]

Party finances

Because the 2013 federal election was the first attempt to join by the party, the AfD had not received any federal funds in the run-up to it,[112] but after receiving 2 million votes it crossed the threshold for party funding and was expected to receive an estimated 1.3 to 1.5 million Euros per year of state subsidies.[113] After joining the parliament after the election of 2017 with more than 90 representatives, the party received more than 70 million Euros per year. This will probably rise to more than 100 million Euros per year from 2019 onward. Further, the party has established and acknowledged a foundation for political education, and other purposes, close to the party but organized separately, which may be able to claim up to 80 million Euro per year.[114] This foundation would be need to be acknowledged by the federal parliament in Germany first, but it generally has a legal claim to these subsidies.

European affiliations

Following the 2014 European Parliament elections, on 12 June 2014 the AfD was accepted into the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group in the European Parliament.[56]

In February 2016, the AfD announced a closer cooperation with the right-wing populist party Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ), which is a member of the Europe of Nations and Freedom (ENF) group.[69] On 8 March 2016, the bureau of the ECR Group began motions to exclude AfD MEPs from their group due to the party’s links with the far-right FPÖ and controversial remarks by two party leader, about shooting immigrants.[70][71] MEP Beatrix von Storch pre-empted her imminent expulsion by leaving the ECR group to join the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group on 8 April,[72][73] and Marcus Pretzell was expelled from the ECR group on 12 April 2016.[74] During the AfD party convention on 30 April 2016, Pretzell announced his intention to join the Europe of Nations and Freedomgroup.[115][116]

Public image

Alternative for Germany in 2013

Alice Weidel and Alexander Gauland in April 2017

At the outset AfD presented itself as conservative and middle-class, catering to a well-educated demographic; around two-thirds of supporters listed on its website in the early days held doctorates, leading to AfD being nicknamed the “professors’ party” in those early days.[117][118][119] The party was described as professors and academics who dislike the compromises inflicted on their purist theories by German party politics.[120] 86% of the party’s initial supporters were male.[45]

Relationship with far-right groups

Outside the Berlin hotel where the party held its inaugural meeting, it has been alleged that copies of Junge Freiheit, a weekly that is also popular with the far-right were being handed out.[121] The Rheinische Post pointed out that some AfD members and supporters write for the conservative paper Junge Freiheit.[42][122] There was also a protest outside the venue of the party’s inaugural meeting by Andreas Storr, a National Democratic Party of Germany(NPD) representative in the Landtag of Saxony, as the NPD sees the AfD as a rival for Eurosceptic votes.[123]

In 2013 Alternative for Germany party organisers sent out the message that they are not trying to attract right-wing radicals, and toned down rhetoric on their Facebook page following media allegations that it too closely evoked the language of the far-right.[117][124] At that time the AfD checked applicants for membership to exclude far-right and former NPD members who support the anti-Euro policy (as other mainstream German political parties do).[117][118][125] The former party chairman Bernd Lucke initially defended the choice of words, citing freedom of opinion, and a right to use “strong words”, meanwhile he has also said that “The applause is coming from the wrong side” in regards to praise his party gained from the National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD).[117]

A 2013 investigation conducted by the internet social analytic company Linkfluence showed little to no similarities in Facebook likes of AfD followers and those of the NPD supporter base.[126] AfD members interests tended towards euroscepticism and direct democracy, while NPD supporters showed interests in anti-Islamification, right-wing rock bands and the German military.[126] An evaluation between the hyperlinks included on AFD local party websites also showed few similarities, with the company’s German chief-executive stating “The AfD supporter base and the right-wing extremist scene are digitally very far removed from one another”.[126] The analysis did point to AfD members favouring links with right-wing populist reactionary conservative content.[126] The AfD’s desire to break consensus-based politics and oppose political correctness as undermining freedom of speech, does lend it kudos as a legitimate mouthpiece for right-wing populism among some of the party membership and on regional AfD websites, which contrasts with the intellectual character of the party hierarchy.[126]

Left-wing criticism of the party took a more hardened tone over the late summer 2013,[citation needed] with an array of political activists from far-left anti-fascist anarchists to the mainstream Green Party accusing it of pandering to xenophobic and nationalistic sentiments.[127] This ultimately led to the AfD complaining over incidents of verbal abuse and violence to its campaigners in Berlin, LübeckNuremberg and the university city of Göttingen.[127] Incidents in Göttingen flared after a party conference on 1 August, with police intervening later in the month in an attempted garage arson attack (in which there was said to be a car filled with AfD campaign literature) and to break up a dispute between the AfD and members of the Green Youth.[127] Party leader Bernd Lucke described the events as a “slap in the face for every person who supports democracy” with the party in Lower Saxony left questioning whether to abandon their campaign in the state as local pub and restaurant owners denied the party access to their venues fearing for their businesses.[127]

On 24 August 2013, Lucke and 16 other party members were reported to have been attacked in Bremen by opponents who used pepper spray and pushed Lucke from the stage. Initial reports by party officials and the police suggested that they were left-wing extremists and that about eight out of 20–25 attackers had succeeded in getting onto the stage. It was reported that a campaign worker had been cut with a knife. Later the police indicated that the number of people was probably around 10, of whom only two were known to have gained access to the stage, that only one of the opponents was known to be a left wing activist, and that the minor cut sustained by a campaign worker was probably not caused by a knife and was incurred later when attempting to apprehend a fleeing attacker.[128]

Following the German Federal Election 2013 the anti-Islam party Die Freiheit unilaterally pledged to support Alternative for Germany in the 2014 elections and concentrate its efforts on local elections only.[129] Bernd Lucke responded by saying the recommendation was unwelcome and sent a letter to party associations recommending a hiring freeze.[130] Earlier in September, Lucke described the Freedom Party members as coming from two camps, one of extreme Islam critics and populists, the other, ordinary democrats who were joining the AfD.[129] Co-operation with the Freedom Party remains controversial within the ranks of the AfD,[130] with some German state associations conducting vetting interviews with former Freedom Party members.[129] Referring to an initiative for an LGBT specific sex education in elementary school, Petry had asked on her social media presence if homophobia was such a common prejudice among third and fourth grade children, that it would be necessary to confront them with it. An article in the German LGBT magazine Queerinterpreted her statement as a demand to protect ″normal” (allegedly referring to heterosexual) families in elementary school.[131]

AfD MEP Beatrix von Storch is a known opponent of same-sex marriage.[132] She has accused school gay youth networks of using “forced sexualization” on their students.

In November 2015, a leading Berlin theatre, the Schaubühne, was brought into legal conflict with members of the AfD over a piece, Falk Richter’s FEAR, that parodied them as zombies and mass murderers.[133] AfD vice-president Beatrix von Storch is depicted facing retribution for her maternal grandfather’s role as a minister in Hitler‘s government.[134] AfD Spokesperson, Christian Lüth, responded by interrupting a performance and filming it. Beatrix von Storch, and Conservative spokesperson Hedwig von Beverfoerde, then requested and obtained a preliminary injunction against the theatre, prohibiting it from using images of them in the production. They charged that the images’ use violated their human dignity protected under the Constitution.[135] On 15 December 2015, the court ruled against the complainants in favour of the theatre’s freedom of expression and lifted the injunctions against using the images. The judges commented that ‘any audience member can recognize that this is just a play’.[136]

In November 2015 Markus Pretzell said that German borders should be defended “with armed force as a measure of last resort,”[74] and in January 2016, Frauke Petry twice said similar things.[137] Petry told the regional newspaper Mannheimer Morgen in an interview, but she later denied this and claimed that the press lied about her statement. Rhein-Zeitung has offered the audio-recording of the interview in which she advocates firing on refugees.[138]

Stern reports that among 396 AfD candidates for the 2017 Bundestag, 47 candidates have not distanced themselves from right extremism. Although a large proportion of the candidates are not openly racist, some relativize Germany’s role in World War II or call for the recognition of a “Cult of Guilt”. 30 candidates tolerate right-wing friends in their profile or are themselves members of groups associated with such people. Others mourn the German Reich or use their symbols.[139]

Pegida

In response to the Pegida movement and demonstrations, members of AfD have expressed different views, with Lucke describing the movement as “a sign that these people do not feel their concerns are understood by politicians.”[140] In response to the CDU Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere alleging an “overlap” between Pegida rallies and the AfD, Alexander Gauland stated that the AfD are “natural allies of this movement”.[141] However, Hans-Olaf Henkel asked members of the party not to join the demonstrations, telling Der Tagesspiegel that he believed it could not be ruled out that they had “xenophobic or even racist connotations”.[140] A straw poll by The Economist found that nine out of ten Pegida protesters would back the AfD.[142]

Antisemitism

Björn Höcke, one of the founders of AfD,[143][144][145][146] gave a speech in Dresden in January 2017, in which, referring to the Holocaust memorial in Berlin, he stated that “we Germans are the only people in the world who have planted a memorial of shame in the heart of their capital”[147] and suggested that Germans “need to make a 180 degree change in their politics of commemoration.”[148]

The speech was widely criticized as antisemitic, among others by Jewish leaders in Germany.[147][149] Within the AfD, he was described by his party chairwoman, Frauke Petry, as a “burden to the party” while other members of the party, such as Alexander Gauland, said that they found no anti-semitism in the speech.[147]

As a result of his speech, the leaders of the AfD have asked in February 2017 that Björn Höcke be expelled from the party. The arbitration committee of the AfD in Thuringia is set to rule on the leaders’ request.[150] As of August 2017, Höcke remains “a part of the soul of the AfD”.[151]

Junge Alternative youth organisation

The Young Alternative for Germany (GermanJunge Alternative für Deutschland or JA), was founded in 2013 as the youth organisation of the AfD, while remaining legally independent from its mother party.[39]

In view of the JA’s independence it has been regarded by some in the AfD hierarchy as being somewhat wayward,[152] with the JA repeatedly accused of being “too far right,”[153] politically regressive and anti-feminist by the German mainstream media.[152][154][155]

Elections

Federal Parliament (Bundestag)

Election year Constituencyvotes Party listvotes % ofparty list votes Seats won +/– Status
2013[156] 810,915 2,056,985 4.7

0 / 631

0 Extra-parliamentary
2017[88][89] 5,316,095 5,877,094 12.6

94 / 709

+94 Opposition

European Parliament

Election year Votes % of vote Rank Seats won +/–
2014[157] 2,070,014 7.1 #5

7 / 96

+7

State Parliaments (Landtage)

State election, year Votes % ofvote Rank Seats won +/– Status
Saxony, 2014[158] 159,611 9.7 #4

14 / 126

+14 Opposition
Thuringia, 2014[159] 99,548 10.6 #4

11 / 91

+11 Opposition
Brandenburg, 2014[160] 119,989 12.2 #4

11 / 88

+11 Opposition
Hamburg, 2015[161] 214,833 6.1 #6

8 / 121

+8 Opposition
Bremen, 2015[162] 64,368 5.5 #6

5 / 83

+5 Opposition
Baden-Württemberg, 2016[163] 809,311 15.1 #3

23 / 143

+23 Opposition
Rhineland-Palatinate, 2016[164] 267,813 12.6 #3

14 / 101

+14 Opposition
Saxony-Anhalt, 2016[165] 271,646 24.4 #2

25 / 87

+25 Opposition
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, 2016[166] 167,453 20.8 #2

18 / 71

+18 Opposition
Berlin, 2016[167] 231,325 14.2 #5

25 / 160

+25 Opposition
Saarland, 2017[168] 32,971 6.2 #4

3 / 51

+3 Opposition
Schleswig-Holstein, 2017[169] 86,275 5.9 #5

5 / 73

+5 Opposition
North Rhine-Westphalia, 2017[170] 624,552 7.4 #4

16 / 199

+16 Opposition
Lower Saxony, 2017[171] 235,840 6.2 #5

9 / 137

+9 Opposition
Bavaria, 2018[172] 1,383,866 10.2 #4

22 / 200

+22 Opposition
Hesse, 2018[173] 378,692 13.1 #4

19 / 110

+19 Opposition

See also

References …

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

Lauren Southern

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Lauren Southern
Lauren Southern.jpg

Southern in 2016
Born 16 June 1995 (age 23)[1]

Residence TorontoOntario, Canada
Nationality Canadian
Alma mater University of the Fraser Valley
(withdrew)
Occupation Political activist, internet personality[2]
Political party Libertarian
YouTube information
Nationality Canadian
Channel
Years active 2015–present
Subscribers 620 thousand
Total views 50 million
show

Subscriber and view counts updated as of August 2018.
Website laurensouthern.net

Lauren Cherie Southern (born 16 June[3] 1995) is a Canadian far-right political activist,[a] internet personality, writer and documentary film director. She has been described as alt-right,[b] though she has denied this. In 2015, Southern ran as a Libertarian Party candidate in the Canadian federal election. She worked for The Rebel Media until March 2017. In addition, she has written for Spiked,[4] the International Business Times, and The Libertarian Republic.[5] Southern continues to work independently and uploads videos on YouTube.

In 2017, Southern supported the white identitarian group Defend Europe opposing the action of non-governmental organizations involved in search-and-rescue operations in the Mediterranean Sea. She was detained by the Italian Coast Guard for blocking a ship embarking on a search-and-rescue mission.[6] In March 2018, she was questioned under the UK Terrorism Act[7] and denied entry to Britain, because of her intentions during her March visit.[8] She said she was “permanently banned” from the UK,[9] though it was later confirmed she was refused entry for specific purposes only, not banned.[10]

In July 2018, she went on a speaking tour of Australia and jokingly called for the country to be bombed, quoting the Bible.[11] In August 2018, her attempted speaking tour of New Zealand was unsuccessful. Auckland Councilcancelled Southern’s booking and blocked her from using its venues to “stir up ethnic or religious tensions”.[12]

Education and personal life

Southern was born in Surrey, British Columbia.[13] She studied political science at the University of the Fraser Valley but completed only two years and did not receive a degree.[14][15][16] Regarding her reason for dropping out, Southern stated that it was a waste of money to pay for knowledge that she could get on her own.[14]

Political career

In 2015, Southern was a candidate in the 2015 Canadian federal election representing the Libertarian Party in the district of Langley—Aldergrove.[15] She was briefly removed by the party as a candidate, but was eventually reinstated with support from Breitbart News and The Rebel Media.[17] The election was eventually won by Conservative candidate Mark Warawa. Southern finished last, having received 535 votes, or 0.9% of the total.[18]

Activism

In June 2015 while reporting on the Vancouver SlutWalk for Rebel Media, Southern’s cameraman was shoved and Southern’s protest sign stating “There Is No Rape Culture In The West” was torn up.[19][20]

In March 2016, a protester in Vancouver poured a container of urine over Southern’s head while she was engaging with LGBTQ protesters at a rally in Vancouver, arguing for two human genders.[21][22][23]

Southern was mistakenly suspended from Facebook, having criticized the site for banning several conservative commentators. She later received an email apology from Facebook saying the suspension was an “error”.[24][25]

In October 2016, Southern had her gender legally changed to male as part of a video produced for Rebel Media to show the ease of Ontario’s new gender ID laws.[26][27]

In 2016, Southern authored and self-published Barbarians: How Baby Boomers, Immigrants, and Islam Screwed My Generation.[28][29]

In January 2017, Southern posted incorrect rumours from 4chan that the Quebec City mosque shooting had been carried out by Syrian refugees; she later deleted those tweets.[30] In March 2017, Southern announced she would be leaving Rebel Media to become an independent journalist.[31] In the same month, she gained access to White House press briefings.[32][33]

In April 2017, Southern was one of several scheduled speakers at a Patriots’ Day rally in Berkeley, California.[34] The rally led to a riot between pro-Trump demonstrators and anti-Trump counter-protesters.[35]

Support for the targetting of NGO ships

In May 2017, Southern took part in an attempt organized by the identitarian group Génération identitare to block the passage of an NGO ship, the Aquarius (co-owned by SOS Mediterranée and by Doctors without Borders), which was leaving Sicily to start a search-and-rescue mission for ship-wrecked migrants off the shores of Northern Africa. Claiming that the goal of the activists “was to stop an empty boat from going down to Libya and filling up with illegal migrants”, Southern was briefly detained by the Italian Coast Guard. NGO ships often rescue migrants and refugees, who disembark from Libyan shores on unsafe makeshift rafts, and bring them to Sicily.[36][37] With regard to her actions, Southern stated that “if the politicians won’t stop the boats, we’ll stop the boats.”[6]

Southern supported similar actions by identitarian group Defend Europe, which chartered a vessel in order to track and stop what it called collusion between NGOs and human traffickers. The group has been accused[by whom?] of intending to obstruct the rescue of migrants and refugees in distress at sea. In July 2017, Southern revealed that Patreon had deleted her account out of concerns about her “raising funds in order to take part in activities that are likely to cause loss of life”.[38] Southern denied these allegations, stating that Defend Europe’s actions were likely to save lives and that none of her funding went towards the group.[39]

United Kingdom-related events

In February 2018, Southern, along with Brittany Pettibone and Caolan Robertson, distributed flyers in the English town of Luton describing Allah as “gay”.[7]

In March 2018, Southern, Pettibone, and Pettibone’s boyfriend, Martin Sellner, were all denied entry to the United Kingdom.[40] Southern was also questioned under the Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000.[7] Her denial of entry was due to her intentions during her March visit[8] and on the same grounds as Pettibone and Sellner.[41]

She said she was “permanently banned” from the UK.[9][42] However, it was later confirmed she was instead refused entry for specific purposes only, and reports of her being banned were false.[10]

2018 Australian tour

Shortly before a planned speaking tour of Australia in July 2018, Australia’s Department of Home Affairs denied Lauren Southern an Electronic Travel Authority visa, saying it was “not a working visa”.[43] She intended to charge $79 for a basic ticket and up to $749 for an “intimate dinner”.[44] The Australian government allowed her to enter the country once she had the correct visa.[45] Arriving at Brisbane airport, she was wearing an “It’s OK to be white” shirt.[46][47]

When she asked people on the street in Melbourne “Should we kill Lauren Southern?”, many had never heard of her.[48] A speaking event in Melbourne was opposed by more than 100 protestors.[49]

There were no protestors at her event in Sydney, where ticket holders were notified of the venue by receiving a text on the day.[50] The Sydney event included a $200 meet-and-greet, a $500 VIP meet-and-greet and a $750 dinner.[51]

In Brisbane, Lauren Southern supported bombing the Australian city of Melbourne, quoting the Bible, as a joke.[11] She was opposed by around 60 protesters.[52]

2018 New Zealand tour

In August 2018, Southern’s attempted speaking tour of New Zealand was unsuccessful. Auckland Council cancelled her booking and blocked her from using its venues to “stir up ethnic or religious tensions”.[12] For agreeing with the cancellation, an MP received violent threats.[53]

The subsequent booking of a private venue was revoked by its owners, one of whom said “The minute I heard who it was I cancelled”.[54] In retaliation, their venue was vandalised.[55]

The failure to find a venue was celebrated by around 1,000 protestors, who said the planned event had nothing to do with freedom of speech. The Prime Minister said Southern’s views “are not those that are shared by this country”.[56]

Auckland Council venue cancellation

Southern and Canadian podcaster and YouTuber Stefan Molyneux were scheduled to speak in Auckland on 3 August 2018, at an Auckland Council-owned theatre. However, Auckland Live, the Council agency responsible for the theatre, cancelled the venue booking on the grounds of concerns around “the health and safety of the presenters, staff and patrons”. The Mayor of Auckland Phil Goff then tweeted that Council venues should not be used to “stir up ethnic or religious tensions”.[57] He later said “we’ve got no obligation at all” to provide a venue for “hate speech”.[53] In response, Southern denied assertions that her views were “hate speech” and warned about the danger of “progressivism”.[12][58]

New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and National Party leader Simon Bridges said they would have supported her right to speak, while Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson said she supported the ban.[59][60] For saying so, Davidson’s family was sent degrading messages of a sexual nature and death threats by supporters of Lauren Southern.[53] Human rights lawyer Craig Tuck criticized Mayor Goff’s decision as a violation of free speech, while the cancellation of Southern and Molyneux’s tour was welcomed by the Auckland Peace Action activist group and the Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand (FIANZ).[12] By contrast, The Spinoff contributor Ali Shakir said that while he disagreed with many of Southern’s views, he thought she and Molyneux should be welcomed to New Zealand and said that barring them damaged the country’s commitment to freedom of expression and raised “serious concerns about the process.” Shakir also questioned FIANZ’s claim to speak for all Muslims.[61] A group called the Free Speech Coalition advocated for a judicial review of the cancellation and raised NZ$50,000 in less than 24 hours.[62] The group’s supporters included former Labour Party cabinet minister Michael Bassett, former National and ACT parties leader Don Brash, Property Institute chief executive Ashley Church, Auckland University of Technology historian Paul Moon, broadcaster Lindsay Perrigo, political commentator Chris Trotter, and New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union director Jordan Williams.[63]

Visa granted

On 20 July, Immigration New Zealand granted visas for Southern and Molyneux to visit New Zealand. While describing their views as “repugnant” and “counter to the kind and tolerant values of the vast majority of New Zealanders”, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Gallowaycleared their entry on the grounds that the duo had met immigration character requirements including not having prior criminal convictions. He added that they were never banned from Australia or the United Kingdom as previously reported.[64] Southern welcomed the news and tweeted that she hoped that she and Molyneux could be “unbarred” from their venue as well.[65][66]

Alistair McCylmont, a leading immigration lawyer, later said there were “plenty” of grounds to stop the two coming into the country. He cited the visa cancellation of a rapper in 2014 using a law usually reserved for white supremacists, and suggested the grounds of a risk to order or the public interest. “Considering the amount of information out there in the public forum about the views held by the different people and what they’ve been talking, they would be plenty of grounds that could have been applied to declining visas.” However, the minister took the view that denying entry would not be justified.[67]

Seeking a private venue

On 25 July, Southern and Molyneux cancelled their trip to New Zealand. The Free Speech Coalition said time had run out to find alternative arrangements for the pair, following the Auckland Council ban.[68] On 26 July, Southern and Molyneux’s promoter David Pellowe said that the duo would be speaking in Auckland after claiming that a new speaking venue had been found.[69][70]

On 2 August, Southern and Molyneux arrived in Auckland for their speaking event on the following day.[71] An email to attendees said the pair look forward to the day when “ideas right of Stalin are permitted equal rights to peaceful assembly”.[72][73] The speaking tour was booked at Auckland’s Powerstation theatre but was cancelled shortly after the venue was revealed on social media. Owner Peter Campbell rescinded the booking, citing disruption to neighbours.[74] Co-owner Gabrielle Mullins cited “humanitarian issues”,[72] adding “The minute I heard who it was I cancelled”,[54] “It goes against quite a lot of things that we say”[73] and “They can say whatever they want but personally I don’t want it in my venue”.[72] For refusing to host the speakers, their building was vandalised with graffiti.[55]

Response to private cancellation

Tāmaki Anti Fascist Action spokesperson Sina Brown-Davis said her group feared “dehumanising depictions of indigenous people” in New Zealand.[75] Molyneux had called Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people “the lowest rung of civilisation”.[76] Brown-Davis added “They’ve been quite clever framing this as a free speech issue, which they use as a smokescreen to introduce their politics of hate and division.”[72] In response to the cancellation, Southern blamed a “violent and scary minority willing to make threats and commit violence” for shutting down free speech.[77][78] Roughly 1000 protestors gathered in Auckland’s Aotea Square that night, celebrating the cancellation of the event, which they said had nothing to do with freedom of speech.[56]

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said New Zealand is “hostile” to the views of the speakers and “I think you’ll see from the reaction they’ve had from New Zealanders that their views are not those that are shared by this country, and I’m quite proud of that”.[56] Green Partyco-leader Marama Davidson added “Aotearoa does not stand for your messages of racism, hatred and especially white supremacy”.[72] Justice Minister Andrew Little said the speakers “clearly have misled people” in trying to secure the venue.[79] TV personality Te Hamua Nikora said the pair were against multiculturalism, unlike New Zealand.[78] The minimum ticket price for the cancelled Auckland event was $99.[74]

Views

Southern has been widely described as alt-right,[b] far right[a] and right-wing.[c] She rejects the label “alt-right”. The Southern Poverty Law Center has described Southern’s videos as anti-feminist, xenophobic, Islamophobic, and borderline white nationalist.[80] She is anti-multiculturalism and has called the Black Lives Matter movement a “terrorist organisation”.[81]

Gender

Southern said transgender people have a “genuine delusion” adding “It’s body dysmorphia and that is a mental illness”.[82] She criticised legal recognition for changing one’s gender, because people doing so might be “dishonest”.[81]

Southern has spoken in opposition to feminism[83] and has said that women are “not psychologically developed to hold leadership positions”,[84] and “not going to be as great being CEOs”.[82] In 2015 she attended SlutWalk and held a sign that read, “There is no rape culture in the West.”[85] She also said that it was “insane” to focus on the issue.[86]

Multiculturalism

Southern is against multiculturalism.[87] She has asked whether a multicultural society would require “witch doctors” at medical conferences,[79] and has claimed that “multiculturalism will inevitably fail unless 50 per cent of the population believes in Western culture“.[88]New Matilda reported that the core message of her 2018 speaking tour of Australia was that “multiculturalism doesn’t work”.[89] On the tour, she caused controversy for publicly criticizing an “Asian only” room-share advert that she had photographed and published as evidence of the “extremely tribalistic” nature of immigrants;[90] attempting to highlight the supposed failure of multiculturalism, in that it produced a form of “segregation”.[91]

Race

Southern defended the American alt-right leader Richard Spencer, who said “Hail Trump” in a speech at a white nationalist gathering, and called for a “peaceful” ethnic cleansing of America. Southern said he “is not a white supremacist, he is a white nationalist. He believes in a white ethnostate.”[92][93][94]

“White genocide” conspiracy theory

Southern has promoted the white genocide conspiracy theory.[95][96][97][98] She has advocated for European countries to refuse refugees from Africa and Asia, saying that immigration would lead to white genocide,[97] and has been labelled in media as a “booster” for the conspiracy at large.[99] In 2018, Southern produced a documentary called Farmlands about the conspiracy theory in relation to post-Apartheid farm violence in South Africa.[100][84] Farmlands includes claims of an impending race war in South Africa, a common talking point for white nationalists.[101]

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

Story 4: United Nation’s Panel Proposes That Criticisms of Mass Migration Policies  Will Be A Criminal Offense — Crushing Dissent — Migration is Not A Human Right — Videos

Nigel Farage on the free speech fight in Europe

BREAKING – PC GONE MAD: Criticising migration could become CRIMINAL offence under new plan

Dispute over UN migration pact fractures Belgian government

Belgium’s center-right government is fighting for its survival this week after the largest coalition party broke away from its three partners and said it would not back a global U.N.-backed migration pact.

The right-wing N-VA party started a social media campaign against the migration pact Tuesday, more than two months after Prime Minister Charles Michel pledged he would sign the pact for Belgium at a meeting next week in Marrakech, Morocco.

Instead of a coalition breakup, Michel announced late Tuesday he would take the issue to parliament for vote in the days to come.

“I want parliament to have its say,” Michel said, staving off an immediate collapse of the government that has been in power for three years. “I have the intention to go to Marrakech and let the position of the parliament be known.”

Michel’s statement came at the end of a hectic day dominated by an anti-pact social media campaign by the N-VA, of the biggest coalition partner.

The in-your-face campaign featured pictures of Muslim women with their faces covered and stated the U.N. pact focused on enabling migrants to retain the cultural practices of their homelands.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, is greeted by Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel prior to a meeting in Brussels, Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Brussels to attend a two-day meeting of NATO foreign ministers. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco, Pool)

The party quickly withdrew the materials after the campaign received widespread criticism.

“We made an error,” N-VA leader Bart De Wever told VRT network.

De Wever apologized for the pictures of women wearing face-covering niqab in western Europe, but immediately added “these pictures are not fake. You can take pictures like this every day in Brussels. It is the stark reality.”

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel pledged at United Nations headquarters in September that he would go to a meeting in Marrakech, Morocco where the U.N.’s Global Compact Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is to be signed next week.

Amid the N-VA upheaval, a Cabinet meeting was canceled Tuesday afternoon and Michel resumed consultations with vice-premiers looking for a way out of the crisis.

Remarking on the party’s withdrawn campaign, Christian Democrat Vice Premier Kris Peeters said: “I only have one word for this – indecent.”

Even with the parliamentary vote, the options for ensuring the government’s survival were slimming down.

The United Nations says the compact will promote safe and orderly migration and reduce human smuggling and trafficking.

The N-VA said it would force Belgium into making immigration concessions. “In our democracy, we decide. The sovereignty is with the people,” the party said in a statement.

Many experts said the accord is non-binding, but the N-VA said it still went too far and would give even migrants who were in Belgium illegally many additional rights.

The U.N. compact was finalized in July with only the U.S. staying out. Several European nations have since pulled out of signing the accord during the Dec. 10-11 conference in Morocco.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/ap/article-6458089/Belgian-government-fights-survival-UN-migrants-pact.html

 

MALCOLM: The UN migration compact spells radical change for Canada

A family from Haiti approach a tent in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Que., stationed by Royal Canadian Mounted Police, as they haul their luggage down Roxham Rd. in Champlain, N.Y., Monday, Aug. 7, 2017. Charles Krupa / AP

The Trudeau government is cheerleading a controversial United Nations initiative that has the potential to fundamentally change Canada.

It’s called the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, and UN representatives are meeting in Morocco in December to discuss and adopt this global agreement.

It may sound like just another gathering of out-of-touch elites patting themselves on the back, and the compact’s text insists the agreement is non-binding. But the ideas proposed are not your run-of-the-mill aspirational pledges.

This UN compact is unprecedented and truly radical. It seeks to make immigration a universal human right.

“Refugees and migrants are entitled to the same universal human rights and fundamental freedoms, which must be respected, protected and fulfilled at all times,” reads the document’s preamble.

The agreement doesn’t simply apply to bona-fide refugees — those fleeing war and persecution whose government has failed to protect them. It applies to all migrants.

It seeks to change international law and norms on migration, and blur the distinction between refugees and migrants — the latter merely seeking more economic opportunity but failing to do so according to a country’s established immigration rules.

The compact stops just short of saying that every person from around the world has a right to live in Canada and become a Canadian citizen.

And it gets even worse. Alongside describing a world with no borders and no meaningful citizenship, the document includes a particularly disturbing section about the media.

One of the “guiding principles” is a “whole-of-society approach” to promoting mass migration, including the role of the media.

It calls upon governments to “promote independent, objective and quality reporting… and stopping allocation of public funding or material support to media outlets that systematically promote intolerance, xenophobia, racism and other forms of discrimination towards migrants.”

So much for a free press.

The UN wants governments to actively intervene in the media and pick and choose which journalists are worthy of promoting, based on a radical ideology and far-left worldview.

Is this what the Liberal government’s new $595-million media slush fund seeks to do?

The prime minister and his top officials are known for name-calling and attacking anyone who disagrees with their dogma on immigration, diversity and multiculturalism.

Liberal officials frequently accuse opponents of being intolerant, xenophobic and racist for raising legitimate concerns about illegal immigration, border security and terrorism.

Are these accusations going to be tied to funding decisions for the media?

Will recipients of Trudeau’s media fund be prohibited from criticizing open borders and mass migration?

Will funding be tied to an attestation to promote UN propaganda?

The Trudeau government has played a leading role in advancing this UN scheme; two Trudeau cabinet minister’s admitted so much in a September article in Maclean’s Magazine.

“The UN’s global compact on refugees could be a game-changer — and Canada is well-placed to make it a reality,” they argue.

This dystopian UN plan seeks to erase borders, destroy the concept of citizenship, undermine the rule of law and circumvent state sovereignty. It would change what it means to be Canadian and prevent the media from criticizing these fundamental changes.

Several of our allies, including Australia, the U.S. and Israel have already pulled out of this disastrous UN compact. Across the world, political leaders and respected journalists are ringing the alarm bell.

In Canada, however, the Trudeau government is welcoming this UN scheme, while most Canadian journalists are failing to inform Canadians about the radical changes on our doorstep.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fIONOZl-6zo

Global Compact for Migration

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) is a politically binding “intergovernmentally negotiated agreement, prepared under the auspices of the United Nations, [that covers] all dimensions of international migration in a holistic and comprehensive manner”.[1] The United Nations conference to adopt the compact will be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 10–11 December 2018.[1] Austria negotiated the GCM on behalf of the EU. The Global Compact is not an international treaty, and it will not be formally binding under international law.[2]

Contents

Background

On 19 September 2016, the nations of the United Nations General Assembly unanimously adopted the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants. The Declaration recognized a need for more cooperation between nations to manage migration effectively.[3]. The declaration set off a process leading to the negotiation of the Global Compact for Migration.

A resolution was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 6 April 2017, which decided on the modalities and timeline for the compact.[4] The agreed upon process consisted of the following three phases:

  1. Consultations (April—November 2017): six sessions in GenevaNew York and Vienna
  2. Stocktaking (December 2017—January 2018), leading to a first draft (“zero draft”)
  3. Intergovernmental negotiations (February—July 2018) at the UN Headquarters in New York

On 9 March 2017, Louise Arbour was appointed by Secretary-General Guterres as his Special Representative for International Migration and was thus tasked with working with the nations and stakeholders to develop the compact.

Substance of the agreement

There are 23 objectives listed in the draft agreement. These include collecting and using accurate and anonymized data to develop evidence-based migration policy, ensuring that all migrants have proof of identity, enhancing availability and flexibility for regular migration, encouraging cooperation for tracking missing migrants and saving lives, ensuring migrants can access basic services, and making provisions for both full inclusion of migrants and social cohesion.[5]

Countries’ positions

 Will sign the Compact
 Won’t sign the Compact
 Considering not signing[when?]
 (Data incomplete)

Austria,[6] Australia,[7] Bulgaria,[8]Croatia[9], the Czech Republic,[10]Dominican Republic,[11]Estonia,[12]HungaryItaly,[13] Israel,[14][15] Poland,[16]Slovakia[17] and Switzerland[18] won’t attend an international conference in Moroccan city of Marrakesh to sign the agreement. The United States did not participate in the negotiation of the agreement, at the behest of President Trump.[6]

Belgium: In Belgium, government party N-VA, including its Secretary of State for Migration Theo Francken, is against participating, while the three other government parties are in favour, creating a political deadlock.[19]

Denmark: On 27 November, the Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen stated that he was supportive of the agreement, but that his government would form a coalition of European countries to create an opt-out.[20]

Dominican Republic: On December 4th, the Dominican government set its position on the Global Migration Pact, stipulating that the Dominican state will not sign the agreement, as reported during a press conference by the legal consultant of the Executive Branch, Flavio Darío Espinal. He also spoke about the participation of the country in the Moroccan summit and announced that the President Danilo Medina will not be in the meeting.[21]

Estonia: The Government of Estonia remained divided on the issue[22] and the country’s position was to be decided by the Riigikogu.[23] On November 26, Riigikogu passed a declaration which supported the compact. According to the Estonian Prime Minister, the declaration would provide the basis for the Governments decision to support the Global Compact for Migration.[24] On 27 November 2018, it was announced, quoting foreign minister Sven Mikser, that Estonia would not attend the Marrakesh conference and would vote for the compact at the UN General Assembly in New York City on 19 December.[25]

Finland: In Finland, the opposition Finns Party opposes the treaty and demands a vote in parliament.[26] The provisions disputed by the Finns in parliament are that both legal and illegal immigrants would be bestowed many of the same rights such as rights to basic services, that the treaty would not allow categorical detention of illegal immigrants,[27] and that the treaty would make migration a human right.[28][29]

Germany: There has been some opposition in the German parliament, led by Alternative for Germany.[30] However, the parliament voted 372–153 in favour of the compact on 29 November.

Israel: Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu commented tersely: “We have a duty to protect our borders against illegal infiltrators. That’s what we’ve done, and that’s what we will continue to do”.[15]

Romania: On the 28 November 2018, the Romanian Foreign Minister was authorized by the Romanian president, Klaus Iohannis, to sign the Migration Pact. Sources say that secret negotiations were carried out long before the news broke out. [31] [32]

Slovakia: Slovak foreign minister Miroslav Lajčák had previously announced that he would step down from his position if the Slovak parliament, controlled by the coalition which he represented, were to reject the Compact.[33][34]

Switzerland: Switzerland will not attend the conference for the formal adoption of the framework in December 2018. The decision was made because the parliament demanded a final say on whether the country would approve the compact, which would require more time.[35]

Criticism

The Chancellor of Austria, Sebastian Kurz, stated that the compact would reduce Austria’s sovereignty and mix up the difference between illegal and legal immigration as well as that between economic and humanitarian immigration.[6]

The Australian government has criticized the agreement, claiming that it does not distinguish between legal and illegal migrants, particularly when it comes to welfare. They have also claimed that the compact could impose obligations to support migrants even when they have returned to their country of origin. The Australian government believes that the compact would undermine their current migration policies.[36][37][38][39]

Goal 17, which condemns discrimination against migrants, has been criticized due to measures for “shaping the perception of migration”. Dutch MEP Marcel de Graaff raised issues with the proposal to defund news outlets espousing anti-migration rhetoric and stated that the pact could be used to criminalize political criticism.[40][41]

See also

References …

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

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1169, November 5, 2018, Story 1: Red Wave Breaking — Senators — Republican 56, Democrat 44 — House Representatives — Republican 226 — Democrat 209 — Videos — Story 2: Top Three Issues — The Economy/Jobs, Illegal Alien Invasion, Healthcare — Videos — Story 3: Waiting For Successful and Viable New Political Party — Videos

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Story 1: Red Wave Breaking — Senators — Republican 56, Democrat 44 — House Representatives — Republican 226 — Democrat 209 — Videos —

Midterm elections: Republican voters show strong turnout in early voting

How Trump’s approval rating could affect midterms | CITIZEN by CNN

The Ingraham Angle Fox News 11/5/18 Breaking Fox News November 5, 2018

Tucker Carlson Tonight 11/5/18 Breaking Fox News November 5, 2018

Is a RED WAVE coming? – Stu explains recent shifts in midterm 2018 polling on TheBlaze

The Reasons Why Voting Democrat Is Signing A Suicide Pact With Those Wanting to Destroy the Republic

#LionelNation🇺🇸Immersive Live Stream: The Greatest Upcoming Election . . . Before 2020

 

People line up to vote.
Analysts cautioned against drawing broad conclusions about which party could gain an advantage from high early vote totals. | Jim Mone/AP Photo

ELECTIONS

A staggering 36 million people have voted early, setting the stage for big midterm turnout

The turnout could be a source of error in pre-election surveys if pollsters did not calibrate properly for such high rates of voting.

A staggering 36 million voters cast their ballots ahead of Election Day this year, setting the stage for much-higher-than-usual turnout for a midterm — and, potentially, big surprises on Tuesday night.

Republican enthusiasm for President Donald Trump and Democrats’ itch to repudiate him at the ballot box have driven people to the polls far faster than in 2014, when 27.2 million people voted early, according to Michael McDonald, a University of Florida professor who tracks voter turnout.

And that trend is expected to extend into Election Day. Early voters in three states — Texas, Nevada and Arizona — have already surpassed total turnout in the last midterm election, McDonald’s data shows, and more states will blow past their normal non-presidential turnout with just a handful more votes on Election Day. The high voting rates have transformed expectations about who will show up in the midterms — and they could inspire results that diverge from any pre-election polls that did not reckon with this year’s unusually high enthusiasm.

“This is not a normal election,” McDonald told POLITICO. “The best guess is that we’re looking at some sort of hybrid midterm/presidential election” in terms of turnout.

Analysts cautioned against drawing broad conclusions about which party could gain an advantage from the high early vote totals. But they did note that pre-election polls make built-in assumptions about how many people will vote, and pollsters who leaned too heavily on past midterm turnout may have misfired.

McDonald and the team at Edison Media Research, which is conducting a revamped exit poll this election after stumbling in 2016, predict that 105.5 million people will vote this year — about 45 percent of the voting eligible population. That’s up from 2014, an unusually low-turnout year in which fewer than 82 million people voted for the highest office on their ballot, but still lower than 2016, when about 137 million people voted for president.

“I think we’ve all made a very safe assumption that 2018 will look nothing like 2014,” Bonier said, noting that underestimating certain demographics by even a few percentage points in a poll could have an outsized effects on the results.

Some pollsters, like Monmouth University and the New York Times/Siena College, have adjusted this year by publishing multiple results for each poll, detailing how the results would change under different turnout scenarios. And the baseline estimates have gone up in recent weeks: The first Times/Siena poll of Rep. Pete Sessions’ (R-Texas) contested reelection race, for example, projected that about 194,000 people would turn out, while the second poll projected 211,000 voters would cast ballots in that slice of the Dallas suburbs.

Over 188,000 voters have already cast early ballots in the Dallas County portion of the battleground district, according to county data. (Another 7 percent of the district’s population is in another county that has not published early vote totals by congressional seat.)

Higher-than-expected turnout helped Democrats in some but not all of the Times/Siena polling models.

Mara Suttmann, a professor of government at Connecticut College, noted that it’s hard to predict which party will benefit from early voting because many voters would have voted whether or not early voting was an option — “cannibalizing” the Election Day vote instead of adding many new voters to the electorate.

Bonier noted that there has been in a surge in non-usual voters, including young people and people voting for the first time, which could favor Democrats. But even this does not guarantee electoral success for Democrats on Tuesday.

“The open question that won’t be answered until [results are in]: Do those early vote trends carry on through Election Day?” Bonier asked. “Or are they reversed? In 2016, in a lot of cases, they were reversed. I don’t think you can bet one way or another at this point.”

These low-propensity voters still make up a proportionally small portion of both the early voter electorate and the expected overall electorate. Data from TargetSmart shows that early voters younger than 39 are still easily outnumbered by voters aged 50-64, and even more so by voters over the age of 65.

And even in states where Democrats lead Republicans in early ballots cast — like Florida, where there’s a tight gubernatorial and Senate election — the election is still far from over.

And there’s still a likely majority of votes to be cast on Election Day.

“We may see another 60 million votes cast [on Election Day]. Most people who will have ended up voting in this election have still not voted,” Bonier said. “In the end, what happens on Election Day turnout will, to some extent, swamp what happened in the early vote.”

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/11/05/early-voting-turnout-2018-elections-midterms-963149

Story 2: Top Three Issues — The Economy/Jobs, Illegal Alien Invasion, Healthcare — Videos —

Tucker: Elections turn on issues that affect the country

Dr. Jason Johnson on Top Voter Concerns for #Midterm Elections

Candidates for 2nd District say economy, health care top issues for voters

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Why it Matters: Here’s why immigration is inspiring these Americans to vote

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With him or against him, Trump looms large over Election Day

today
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FILE- In this Nov. 2, 2018, file photo residents vote early at the Douglas County Election Commission office in Omaha, Neb. For voters across America, this year’s midterm elections represent something far greater than whatever Senate and House races appear on their ballots. It is a referendum on President Donald Trump and the venomous political culture that many blame for gridlock in Congress and a recent spate of hate crimes and politically motivated attacks. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik, File)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Michael Gregoire marched along a downtown sidewalk in the tense days before the midterm elections, waving a hand-painted sign at passing traffic: “DEFEAT REPUBLICANS 2018.”

“The survival of the country is going to depend on this election,” he said as another man stopped for a moment to argue. The strangers faced each other from opposite edges of the great American divide, Democrat versus Republican, both convinced the election is among the most consequential in their lifetimes and that they must save the nation from the other side.

President Donald Trump looms large over Tuesday’s election, which is expected to draw historic numbers to the polls and will determine which party controls Congress. For Gregoire and Kanter — and for voters across the country — the election represents something far greater than whatever Senate and House races appear on their ballots. It is a competition for the soul of America — a referendum on Trump and the venomous political culture that many blame for gridlock in Congress and a recent spate of hate crimes and politically motivated attacks.

Less than two weeks ago in this city, a white man gunned down two African-American shoppers at a grocery store in what police described as a racially motivated attack. Days later, an avid Trump supporter was arrested for mailing pipe bombs to prominent critics of the president, all of whom Trump routinely derides as “evil” and “un-American.” The next day, another gunman opened fire in a synagogue in Pittsburgh, massacring 11 worshippers and telling police “all these Jews need to die.”

Don Albrecht, a 75-year-old accountant and Republican who voted for Trump in 2016, lives blocks away from the Louisville grocery store where two people died. He’d pulled into the parking lot minutes after the gunfire erupted, saw the police cars and shaken employees, and felt like the country’s poisonous political climate had landed in his backyard. He wishes he could take back his vote for Trump.

“He has diarrhea of the mouth and diarrhea of the brain. He’s just so irresponsible,” said Albrecht, who worries Trump’s embrace of the far-right is remaking his party. “I don’t think the American public is going to put up with it. I think there’s going to be a big backlash against Republicans because of this divisiveness.”

Other Trump voters remain staunchly behind him, and plan to choose Republican candidates to help him make good on his pledges, including vows to implement more hardline immigration policies. “I want to see the wall go up,” said Joe Spirko, 57, as he peddled Trump flags outside of one of the president’s rallies in Florida last week. “Since Trump come along, I feel a lot better.”

Trump has stepped up his rhetoric on immigration ahead of the elections, focusing on a caravan of Central American migrants heading toward the United States. Trump and his backers have called it “an invasion” — though the group of a few thousand people, including mothers and children, remains hundreds of miles away — and suggested without proof that there are criminals and terrorists in the crowd of those fleeing violence and poverty. In a White House speech, the president said he would sign an order preventing border-crossers from claiming asylum, a legally questionable proposition, and said he’d told military troops he’s mobilizing to the border to respond to thrown rocks like they were “rifles.”

Julie Hoeppner, a 67-year-old psychologist in Indiana, voted early for Republican candidates, also citing illegal immigration as a primary concern.

A friend recently sent Hoeppner a photo of immigrants arriving at Ellis Island with a note that said: “For our ancestors, this is their caravan.” Hoeppner didn’t respond but thought to herself that her ancestors arrived legally. “Which is a big difference,” she said. “They didn’t come trying to storm the border.”

Pedro Panelo, the 21-year-old president of the College Republicans at Wheaton College in Illinois, is frustrated immigration became a last-minute political football, because the issue is more complex than what either Democrats or Republicans make it out to be. Panelo, the son of a Mexican immigrant, said migrants shouldn’t be demonized, but he stopped short of criticizing the president, and plans to vote for Republican candidates who could help push Trump’s agenda.

“When it comes to his actions, I’m not a huge fan of his tweets,” Panelo said. “But what I say is look what he’s done for the country and not always what he’s said on Twitter.”

He said he’s felt an extraordinary level of enthusiasm for this election among his fellow students. Young people, who historically sit out of midterm elections, and women are both expected to be pivotal forces Tuesday. In Georgia, Democratic campaign volunteer Adrienne White said she struggled to recruit volunteers ahead of the 2016 presidential election but that it’s been easy this year, especially among women.

In Pittsburgh, where residents just finished burying those gunned down at the Tree of Life synagogue, some voters saw their Election Day decisions as a way to send a message that the country is headed down a dark and dangerous path.

“This is probably the most important election in the past 100 years. This will turn the tables,” said Barbara Villa, 71, who with her husband planted a crop of “Vote Blue” signs outside their home.

Rose Cathleen Bagin, 77, lives in the same neighborhood as the synagogue. She lashed a sign to her front porch reading “VOTE FOR GUN CONTROL,” and she is stunned every time she sees the crowd at Trump rallies on television cheering for his divisive language.

“I can’t stand the terrible things he says and the terrible things he’s doing,” said Bagin, who plans to vote Democratic Tuesday. “I’m terrified. We’re going to a place I just don’t understand.”

___

Also contributing were AP reporters Allen G. Breed and Adam Geller from Pittsburgh and Tamara Lush from Estero, Florida.

https://apnews.com/464f27b585d34fc597884d88d8ab10af

Democrats’ Pickup Chances Rise In More House Races, Analyst Says

More U.S. House races are competitive and leaning toward Democrats with Election Day tomorrow, according to the latest ratings changes by Cook Political Report. The new rankingsshow nine districts shifting toward Democrats and only one becoming better for Republicans.

Democrats’ chances to pick up seats have improved in key races in Georgia, Pennsylvania, California and Washington, according to ratings changes by Cook’s David Wasserman. The contest to succeed retiring California Republican Darell Issa is likely going to Democrat Mike Levin, and in Washington state’s 8th district, Democrat Kim Schrier’s chance of replacing retiring Republican Dave Reichert has moved from “Toss Up” to “Lean Democratic.”

“Bottom line: anything from a Democratic gain of 20 to 45 seats remains well within the realm of possibility, but a gain of 30 to 40 seats – and House control – is the most likely outcome,” Wasserman wrote today in an online post.

In Georgia, GOP Rep. Karen Handel’s race moved to “Toss Up” from “Lean Republican.”

Handel, elected in a special election last year, is facing headwinds from a gubernatorial contest that is energizing Democrats in her north Atlanta district. Handel’s challenger, Democrat Lucy McBath, is a gun-control activist and African American who could be helped by a possible surge in black voter turnout led by enthusiasm for Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, according to Wasserman.

Democrats’ Pickup Chances Rise In More House Races, Analyst Says

Meanwhile, a new congressional map in Pennsylvania is giving Freedom Caucus member Scott Perry his first competitive general election bid. The race is now considered a “Toss Up” as the three-term Republican continues to be out raised by Democrat George Scott.

The re-election bids of Republicans Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida and Fred Upton of Michigan both moved from “Likely Republican” to “Lean Republican.” In Texas, House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul’s race and retiring Republican Joe Barton’s open seat were previously considered “Solid Republican,” but now are rated “Likely Republican.” Wasserman also moved West Virginia Republican Representative Alex Mooney’s re-election from “Solid Republican” to “Likely Republican.”

The good news for Republicans out of the latest rating changes is in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. Incumbent Democrat Tom O’Halleran’s race moved from “Likely Democrat” to “Lean Democrat,” as the freshmen member continues to defend a seat in a district President Donald Trump narrowly won in 2016.

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Exclusive poll: Only half of Americans have faith in democracy

Just 51% of Americans said they have faith in democracy, and 37% say they have lost faith in democracy, according to a new Axios/SurveyMonkey poll conducted in late October.

Why it matters: It suggests that recent political turmoil has caused people to doubt the very foundation of American society, particularly leading up to election day.

Show less

Since October 2016, just before the last presidential election, SurveyMonkey has tracked Americans’ views toward democracy.

What’s happening: Despite the political turbulence over the past two years, Americans’ faith in democracy has been relatively stable — with two exceptions.

  • Just before heading to the polls in 2016, 52% of voters had faith in democracy.
  • That number grew from pre-election numbers (by 8 percentage points) immediately following the election in November 2016 and in February 2017, after President Trump’s inauguration.
  • One year ago, in October 2017, faith in democracy dropped by 7 percentage points and has held fairly steady since then.
  • The other half of Americans have either lost faith in democracy or never had faith in it to begin with, according to the poll.

The big picture: SurveyMonkey also found that half the country believes America is more divided today than ever before — and that these divisions will probably continue far into the future (ranging between 46% and 51% over the past two years).

  • About one-third of Americans agree America is more divided today, but are optimistic that Americans will come together in the near future.
  • 18% say America is not more divided today than it has been in the past.

Methodology: This survey was conducted Oct. 19–24 among 3,913 adults. Respondents were selected from the more than 2 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. Data have been weighted for age, race, sex, education and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of the United States age 18 and over.

The modeled error estimate for the full sample of that survey is plus or minus 2 percentage points and full crosstabs are available here.

Go deeper:

https://www.axios.com/poll-americans-faith-in-democracy-2e94a938-4365-4e80-9fb6-d9743d817710.html

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1160, October 22, 2018, Story 1: President Trump Houston Rally For Senator Ted Cruz — Attacks The Radical Democrat Mob For Open Borders — Videos — Story 2: Mob of 5000 Hondurans Head North Through Middle of Mexico Headed To United States — Videos — Story 3: Medicare For All — Socialized Medicine — American People Like The Medical Plans Paid For My Employers — Videos

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Story 1: President Trump Houston Rally For Senator Ted Cruz — Attacks The Radical Democrat Mob For Open Borders –Videos

Trump, Cruz hold ‘MAGA’ rally in Houston, Texas

 

President Trump heads to Texas to stump for old foe Sen. Ted Cruz

Trump fans, along with supporters of Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz, started waiting in line at Houston’s Toyota Center in Houston as early as Sunday for a Monday evening rally. (Oct. 22) AP

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

WASHINGTON – One of the political world’s most fractious couples gets together again Monday in Texas.

President Donald Trump heads to Houston to stump for embattled incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz, the latest phase in a political relationship that has gone from warm to bad to tolerable.

“Ted Cruz has become a friend of mine,” Trump said during a political rally over the weekend in Missoula, Montana – never mind that Trump once nicknamed him “Lyin’ Ted,” insulted his wife, and suggested his rival’s father was somehow involved in the John F. Kennedy assassination.

For his part, Cruz has expressed his support for the president, though he recently declined to describe Trump as either friend or foe.

“He’s the president,” Cruz said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.” “I work with the president in delivering on our promises.”

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

Big Night In Texas!!!!

Perhaps Cruz still remembers describing Trump as a “pathological liar.”

The two men are apt to be all smiles Monday night at the Toyota Center in Houston. They have a common interest in holding the Texas Senate seat for Republicans, as Cruz faces a well-funded challenge from his Democratic opponent, Rep. Beto O’Rourke.

“He’s not Lyin’ Ted anymore,” Trump said as he departed for Texas. “He’s beautiful Ted.”

With Cruz moving up in polls – Real Clear Politics’ average of recent surveys gives him a 7 percentage point lead – many political analysts have suggested Trump is traveling to Texas in order to take credit for Cruz’s expected victory on Nov. 6.

Many Republicans criticized Trump during his rise to the presidency in 2016 – Cruz included – but in 2018, many have welcomed him back to the campaign trail as the GOP struggles to keep control of Congress.

Trump, ever the campaigner, is happy to help as he loads up his schedule with rally after rally. He needs all the Republican lawmakers he can get to move his agenda.

And candidates like Cruz need votes from Trump supporters who might be inclined to stay home for the midterms because the president himself is not on the ballot.

“This is a marvelous example of how principles in politics last only until the next election,” said Jeffrey Engel, director of the Center for Presidential History at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

The pair have periodically made a show of friendship. In March 2017, the Texas senator, his wife Heidi and their two daughters had dinner at the White House.

But there are indications, however, that the two aren’t particularly close, and that memories of the 2016 bloodletting linger.

Early in the race for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, Cruz passed up repeated opportunities to criticize Trump as the New York businessman led all pre-primary polls. Aides at the time noted that Trump was busy attacking all of their other mutual opponents.

Trump, too, declined to attack Cruz – at first. But that changed as Cruz began moving up in polls ahead of the Iowa caucuses, the first contest on the Republican nomination calendar.

At that point, Trump began questioning whether Cruz, born in Canada, was eligible to be president and to note that other senators didn’t like him. “Lyin’ Ted” became part of the campaign lexicon.

Cruz responded by hitting Trump for “New York values” and describing him as a liberal on social issues like abortion.

The Republican race boiled down mainly to a contest between Trump and Cruz, upping their rhetoric and rivalry. While Trump won most of the GOP primaries, Cruz defeated him in Iowa and Wisconsin, and became the challenger with the best chance of denying Trump a majority of delegates headed into the Republican National Convention.

At that point, Trump unleashed some of his most vicious attacks of the campaign on Cruz. At one point, he cited a highly questionable National Enquirer story suggesting that Cruz’s father Rafael was part of a JFK assassination plot.

In March 2016, Trump tweeted out an unflattering photo of Cruz’s wife, Heidi, beside a glamour shot of Melania Trump, a former professional model.

“The images are worth 1,000 words,” the tweet said.

Cruz lashed back with equally harsh comments about Trump.

“This man is a pathological liar,” he said at one point. “A narcissist at a level I don’t think this country’s ever seen.”

Just for good measure, Cruz described Trump as “utterly amoral” and “a serial philanderer.”

When Cruz withdrew from the race after a crushing loss to Trump in the Indiana primary in May 2016, he refused to endorse his rival. Even at the July convention in Cleveland, as boos from Trump delegates rained down, Cruz urged Republicans to vote their conscience.

By September, Cruz offered a tepid endorsement of Trump via Facebook page.

During his ABC interview on Sunday, Cruz said “2016 was an election unlike any other,” but there is no point in taking things personally when it comes to dealing with Trump.

“If I put my own personal hurt feelings ahead of representing Texas,” Cruz said, “that would be abdicating my responsibility.”

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/10/22/donald-trump-ted-cruz-texas-rally/1694688002/

 

Story 2: Mob of 5000 Hondurans Head North Through Middle of Mexico Headed To United States — Videos

Migrant caravan lurches toward U.S.

President Trump Using The Migrant Caravan To Rile Up Base Ahead Of Midterms? | Deadline | MSNBC

‘The Five’ reacts to growing migrant caravan crisis

What can US do to stop migrant caravans?

Migrant Caravan Shrinks After Trump’s Warning

The U.S. Helped Destabilize Honduras. Now Honduran Migrants Are Fleeing Political & Economic Crisis

Gingrich: Caravan is an attack on US sovereignty

Thousands Of Migrants Stopped At Guatemala-Mexico Border | NBC Nightly News

Trump issues threats over immigrant caravan heading to U.S.

Tucker: Should America help caravan migrants?

 

Migrant caravan could prompt a wider confrontation between Mexico, US

Published 

TAPACHULA, Mexico — As thousands of Central American migrants continue their long walk to the U.S. border, prompting daily condemnations from President Donald Trump, the Mexican government has had to decide: Are Trump’s threats enough to prompt an intervention?

For now, Mexican police have merely stepped aside as the caravan has passed, watching first as migrants took rafts across the river that separates the country from Guatemala, and then as they continued by foot along the main highway, chanting, “Si, se pudo,” or “Yes, we did it.”

That response appears to have been conveyed to the White House, and now, once again, Mexico’s most important bilateral relationship appears to be on shaky ground.

“Sadly, it looks like Mexico’s Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan heading to the Southern Border of the United States,” Trump tweeted. He later said on Fox News, “I don’t know what’s going on with Mexico. It looks like the people are walking right through the middle of Mexico. So I’m not exactly thrilled there either!”

The caravan has marked another chapter in Mexico’s complicated effort to balance American threats with the country’s own domestic politics. Detaining or deporting the caravan’s members would certainly please Trump, but it would flout the country’s own immigration laws and further the impression that the Mexican government is taking orders from a hostile White House.

So far, the Mexican police appear to be conscious of that tension,and the optics of their presence. Riot police have stopped to pose for pictures in their gear, as if ready to combat the migrants, letting international television crews film them before retreating.

The caravan risks a wider confrontation with Washington if Trump threatens to cut off aid to Mexico, as he has threatened Central America, or attempts to seal the border with the U.S. military. Every day, billions of dollars of trade crosses the U.S.-Mexico border, and any attempt to block those flows could inflict serious economic harm on Mexico. The newly renegotiated North American trade agreement is also hanging in the balance as it has yet to be ratified by legislatures.

The dilemma for the Mexican government is worsened by the fact that the incoming government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador has campaigned on a gentler approach to migration, saying it would not hunt down migrants as if they were criminals.

“You have Trump’s government pressing Mr. Peña Nieto’s government to deter or stop the flows, but on the other hand, you have the pressure of public opinion and the new government saying you should treat the newcomers with dignity,” said Daniel Millan, a former spokesman in President Enrique Peña Nieto’s government who is now a political consultant. “They are walking a tightrope.”

Mexico’s incoming foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard, said Monday on Mexican radio that it would be a “big mistake” for the Mexican government to use its own armed forces to try to stop the caravan.

“It would be inadmissible in Mexico to use the army against these people,” he said, adding that he didn’t think Peña Nieto’s government was considering that step. “We would not be in agreement with that at all.”

After a meeting with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland in Ottawa on Monday, he added that his administration would offer more work visas for Central Americans. “We are going to invest in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador,” he said.

Peña Nieto addressed the caravan on Friday when he said, “Mexico does not allow people to enter our territory illegally and much less so violently.”

That day, on the bridge connecting Mexico and Guatemala, Mexican police fired tear gas at the migrants, closing the official border as film crews and photographers captured their actions. But just next to the bridge, police watched as thousands of migrants crossed the border illegally by raft, settling for the night in the main plaza of the border city of Ciudad Hidalgo.

Still, the images on the bridge, at least for that moment, appeared to impress conservatives in the United States.

“I want to thank the Mexican officials and the Mexican police for putting their lives on the line,” said conservative commentator Laura Ingraham on Fox News on Friday night.

“I think this is the best Mexico has ever been,” said former congressman and Trump supporter Newt Gingrich on Ingraham’s show.

But in Mexico, the images were seen differently.

Mexican political analyst Carlos Bravo Regidor captured the reaction of many here, tweeting sarcastically: “The wall already exists. It’s called Mexico. Congratulations, Mr. Trump.”

On Sunday afternoon, there was yet another test. A convoy of police officers, wearing riot gear and carrying shields, headed for the migrant caravan, ready to form a barricade that would block the more than 5,000 Central Americans headed north.

“We’re here to enforce the laws of Mexico,” one police officer said. “You can’t just pass through our country without permission.”

When the migrants approached the police checkpoint, officers pleaded with them to apply for legal status in Mexico. There were empty buses ready to take them for processing. A police helicopter swooped overhead. The caravan paused briefly as the migrants talked among themselves. Maybe Mexican authorities would give them temporary visas, they thought, or maybe it was a trick, a sneaky way for Mexico to deport the migrants en masse.

“Vamos!” several migrants yelled, and they walked through the police checkpoint. The police did not stop them. Instead, officers threw their riot shields in a bus and drove away. The caravan continued, undeterred.

Mexico is by no means lax on undocumented Central American migrants. Last year, according to its Interior Ministry, it deported 82,000 migrants from the region. It’s possible that, at any moment, the Mexican government could decide to take a harsher stance with the migrant caravan.

“We know they can decide to stop us at any time, and it scares me,” said Alside Caseres, a member of the caravan from Honduras, who is traveling with his wife and son.

It was Monday morning, and Caseres and his family were packing their bags, preparing for another day of walking in the heat. They had slept on ground of the concrete plaza last night, eating noodles and tortillas donated by local residents.

“Viva Mexico!” yelled some of the other migrants who had already started walking.

On Sunday, Trump tweeted, “People have to apply for asylum in Mexico first, and if they fail to do that, the U.S. will turn them away.”

Indeed, Mexican authorities have repeatedly encouraged the Central American migrants to apply for legal status here, but it was unclear what that status would yield: asylum in Mexico, a temporary visa that would allow enough time for migrants to traverse the country, or something else. Several hundred members of the caravan have agreed to be processed legally, and over the weekend they were taken to a shelter in southern Mexico, which is currently closed to journalists.

On Monday morning, organizers of the caravan expressed skepticism toward Mexican immigration authorities and their offer of legal status.

“Humanitarian assistance has been predicated on detention,” said Irineo Mujica, the director of Pueblo Sin Fronteras

https://www.thehour.com/news/article/Migrant-caravan-could-prompt-a-wider-13327884.php

Story 3: Medicare For All — Socialized Medicine — American People Like The Medical Plans Paid For My Employers — Videos

Government Can’t Fix Healthcare

Bernie Sanders Shreds Trump’s Anti-Medicare for All Fear-Mongering

Trump criticizes Democrats’ Medicare for All plan in op-ed

 

 

Democrats back Medicare for all in about half of House races they’re contesting

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

WASHINGTON – Democratic candidates for the House are backing a Medicare for all approach to the nation’s health care system in just over half the races in which a Democrat is on the ballot, according to a new survey provided first to USA TODAY.

The tally by National Nurses United, which supports a government-run, single-payer system, shows how the idea has risen in popularity even as Republicans attack the plan as socialized medicine.

“This is historic,” said Ken Zinn, the group’s political director. “The campaign has really picked up steam.”

But polls show the public is still fuzzy on the details of “Medicare for all,” and support drops when they’re given more information. The nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation defines the program as one that would replace virtually all other sources of private health coverage and most public programs.

“When you talk about policy details, that whole discussion is something different,” said Mollyann Brodie, senior vice president of public opinion and survey research at Kaiser Family Foundation. “And we don’t know entirely how things will play out.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who is not a co-sponsor, said in June that Medicare for all will be one of the proposals considered if Democrats take the House. But, noting that she has always been for a “public option,” Pelosi said all proposals would “have to be evaluated in terms of the access that they give, the affordability of it and how we pay for it.”

“It’s all on the table,” she said.

Democrats have made health care one of their top campaign issues this cycle after many Republicans voted for failed legislation last year that would have removed millions of Americans from the rolls of the insured. Many are pledging to fix the flaws in Obamacare while targeting GOP attempts to “sabotage” it. But Republicans in battleground districts are trying to tie Democrats to Medicare for all, even in some cases where the candidates say they don’t support the approach.

“Voters have and will continue to reject a complete government takeover of the health care system,” said Jesse Hunt, national press secretary at the National Republican Congressional Committee.

In an op-ed for USA TODAY, President Donald Trump ripped apart Medicare for all as “just the beginning” of a socialist agenda for Democrats. He said the program would cost an “astonishing” $32.6 trillion during its first 10 years, a reference to a study by the Mercatus Center of George Mason University of a health care plan proposed by Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., a 2016 Democratic presidential candidate who may run in 2020.

Politifact found that Americans in the aggregate would pay more to the government to fund health care but less overall than they pay now. The fact-checking site also noted the study forecast that total health care spending would drop by about $2 trillion over 10 years.

Sanders, in an interview with USA TODAY, said the president is “a pathological liar” who can’t be trusted.

“This is a president who, by sabotaging the Affordable Care Act, has driven premiums up in many parts of the country,” he said. “So when he talks about my bill – Medicare for all – people, I think, should be highly dubious about what he says.”

Medicare for all is one of the top issues at the heart of a divide between its progressive advocates and centrist Democrats who say the proposal is a political loser and who would rather focus on shoring up the Affordable Care Act.

The division played out in the red state of Indiana last week with two Democratic candidates campaigning on opposite sides of the issue. While 9th district congressional candidate Liz Watson campaigned with Sanders in favor of it, Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly cut an ad saying “socialists” will turn health care over to the government “over my dead body.”

Tracking polls from the Kaiser Family Foundation show a modest increase in support for the idea of a national health plan since Sanders made it part of his rallying cry during the 2016 presidential campaign.

About 6 in 10 adults favor a national health plan or Medicare for all system. Less than half did a decade ago.

Progressives say they have polling on their side.

“This is a solution that resonates with the American people,” said Zinn, with National Nurses United. “But it is also a reflection of the absolute crisis that so many are facing (with health care).”

But the surveys also show that support erodes when people hear the arguments that the plan could increase taxes or government control. And nearly half of adults surveyed last October falsely assumed they could keep their current insurance under a single-payer plan.

“The notion that it’s popular is premised upon people knowing almost nothing about it,” said Matt Bennett, co-founder of the centrist Democratic think tank Third Way. “That’s a problem for a very complicated thing that would transform one-fifth of our entire economy.”

In the National Nurses United survey, candidates were not counted in support of Medicare for all if they merely said they were open to considering the idea or that they support “universal health care,” which may still include private insurers. They also were not included if they backed a scaled-back version, such as expanding Medicare to those over 49 or allowing it as a “public option” that would still have to compete against private plans.

By that definition, the group found Democratic candidates supporting Medicare for all in 223 of the 431 House contests in which a Democratic candidate is running. But Republicans are likely to win 79 of those races, according to the nonpartisan Cook Political Report. Democrats are expected to win 127. The remaining 17 are highly competitive.

There are 123 co-sponsors of the pending Medicare for all legislation in the House. In July, Democrats in July launched a Medicare for all congressional caucus with 70 founding members.

But even caucus members like New Jersey Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman say the process for achieving such a program may be gradual, such as first allowing Medicare as an option.

“I don’t know who’s actually running on just Medicare for all as the be-all end-all,” Watson Coleman told the USA TODAY Network. “Even if we are pursuing it, it may be a bit of a journey to get there.”

Bennett said a single-payer health care system certainly won’t happen while Trump is president, and it’s unlikely that a Democratic president would attempt such “a radical transformation” of the system.

In the Senate, however, Sanders’ bill has 16 Democratic co-sponsors, including other potential 2020 presidential candidates: Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey.

“That’s not a coincidence,” Zinn said. “They understand that to be viable in a Democratic primary, they have to be on the right side of this issue.”

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2018/10/23/democrats-back-medicare-all-half-contested-house-races/1732966002/

 

 

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1150, October 3, 2018 — Story 1: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Announces The United States Termination of Treaty of Amity With Islamic Republic of Iran — Long Overdue — Videos — Story 2: President Trump Mocks Kavanaugh Accuser At Rally and FBI Sends Supplemental Background on Judge Kavanaugh To White House and Senate — Expect Senate Confirmation Vote Saturday — Videos — Story 3: Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell Views on U.S. Economy and Monetary Policy — Videos — Story 4: Job Market Booming With Private Payroll Surge of 230,000 in September 2018 — Videos

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Story 1: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Announces The United States Termination of Treaty of Amity With Islamic Republic of Iran — Long Overdue — Videos —

The United Nation’s Top Court Ordered The Trump Administration To Lift Sanctions On

Iran | TIME

USA: US to cancel 1955 treaty with Iran on economic ties, consular rights – Pompeo

Bolton: Iran made a mockery of the Treaty of Amity

John Bolton Says U.S. Will Review All Agreements That Expose It To The World Court

UN court orders US to lift some Iran sanctions

USA: US to cancel 1955 treaty with Iran on economic ties, consular rights – Pompeo

Watch Now: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo holds press conference, live stream

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) delivers its Order in the case of Iran v. USA

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) delivers its Order in the case of Iran v. USA

Iran Seeks Ruling of UN’s Highest Court to Lift US Sanctions

Iran today takes the USA to the Court of Justice in the Hague for imposing sanctions

US and Iran wait for the world court ruling on the legitimacy of US sanctions against Iran

Nigel Farage reacts to Trump trading barbs with Iran

Iran nuclear deal will remain valid regardless of U.S. decision, says EU policy chief

What comes next for the Iran nuclear deal?

The Iran Nuclear Deal: The Future of the JCPOA

Trump clashes with EU over Iran sanctions

Trump no nonsense approach on Iran is the right strategy: Gen. Jack Keane

Trump sanctions may spell the end for Iranian Revolution: John Hannah

President Donald Trump Delivers Remarks On Iran Deal – May 8, 2018 | CNBC

What is the International Court of Justice? The Role and Activities of the ICJ

US urges World Court to dismiss Iran’s lawsuit

Iran ‘Violated Its Obligations,’ U.S. Says As It Defends Sanctions | NBC News

US calls ruling a defeat for Iran, ends treaty

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the United States is terminating a 1955 friendship treaty with Iran after it was cited in a ruling against US sanctions by the International Court of Justice

The United States on Wednesday called an international court ruling against its Iran sanctions a defeat for Tehran as it terminated a 1955 treaty on which the case was based.

The International Criminal Court ordered the United States to lift sanctions on medicine, food and civilian airplane spare parts, just as President Donald Trump tries to squeeze Iran’s economy.

But Secretary of State Mike Pompeo noted that the UN court did not rule more broadly against US sanctions and he insisted that the United States already exempted humanitarian goods from the sanctions.

“The court’s ruling today was a defeat for Iran. It rightly rejected all of Iran’s baseless requests,” Pompeo told reporters.

Accusing Iran of “abusing the ICJ for political and propaganda purposes,” Pompeo announced that the United States was ending a friendship treaty signed when Iran was ruled by the pro-US shah.

“This is a decision, frankly, that is 39 years overdue,” Pompeo said, referring to the time since the 1979 Islamic revolution transformed Iran from one of the closest allies to a determined foe.

“Given Iran’s history of terrorism, ballistic missile activity and other malign behaviors, Iran’s claims under the treaty are absurd,” he said.

The Treaty of Amity with Iran, signed in 1955 and ratified by the US Senate a year later, lays out practicalities for unfettered economic relations and consular rights between the two countries.

The US withdrawal will have limited direct effect, with the two countries not even having diplomatic relations.

But Iran has repeatedly cited the treaty to press claims from the United States, including when the US Navy shot down an Iran Air civilian plane in 1988, killing 290 people.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-6236363/US-calls-ruling-defeat-Iran-ends-treaty.html

 

KEVIN LAMARQUE / REUTERS

nistration has been tightening the screws on Iran ever since the U.S. withdrew in May from the nuclear deal. It has imposed sanctions, increased its hostile rhetoric, and threatened its own allies for working with Tehran. Now comes one more item on that list: On Wednesday, the Trump administration tore up the little-known, Eisenhower-era Treaty of Amity with the Islamic Republic on the same day the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that U.S. sanctions on Iran must exempt humanitarian items.

In announcing the decision concerning the 1955 treaty, Mike Pompeo, the U.S. secretary of state, said at the State Department, “This is a decision, frankly, that is 39 years overdue.”

The more than six-decade-old accord survived the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran that was followed by the takeover of the U.S. Embassy, and the hostage-taking of 52 Americans, including diplomats, for 444 days. It also survived what has mostly been low after low in the intervening decades, including near weekly chants of “Death to America” in the Islamic Republic, round after round of crippling U.S. sanctions, and even the shooting down, by the U.S. military, of an Iranian airliner with 290 people on board. As Farshad Kashani wrote in The National Interest, the two countries have used the treaty’s dispute-resolution mechanism, which relies on the ICJ, at various times since 1988, when the Iran Air flight was shot down—most recently in July.

That’s when Iran brought a case at The Hague–based court alleging violations of the Treaty of Amity, challenging, among other things, the U.S. withdrawal from the multilateral nuclear agreement with the Islamic Republic. But the court’s ruling Wednesday was much narrower in scope, dealing only with the sale of “humanitarian” goods to Iran, which the court said the U.S. should not sanction. Pompeo said that “existing exceptions, authorizations, and licensing policies for humanitarian-related transactions and safety of flight will remain in effect.” But, he added, “we’re disappointed that the court failed to recognize that it has no jurisdiction to issue any orders related to these sanctions measures with the United States.” The ICJ’s orders are legally binding but not enforceable.

The Trump administration is meanwhile preparing to impose more punitive measures on the Islamic Republic next month. At the United Nations last week, Donald Trump asked “all nations to isolate Iran’s regime as long as its aggression continues.”

The Trump administration says it wants countries that buy Iranian oil to reduce their imports to zero, and has even threatened to sanction its partners who do business with Iran if they don’t stop. Those partners, which include European countries, Russia, and China, are working to devise their own system to work with Iran in order to keep the Islamic Republic in the nuclear agreement under which it agreed to freeze its nuclear program in exchange for political and economic incentives. Additionally, the administration has set up an Iran Action Group whose work is centered on nuclear activities, terrorism, and the detention of American citizens in Iran.

The U.S. says the nuclear agreement rewarded Iran despite its malign activities. It accuses the Islamic Republic of supporting terrorism, of pursuing a ballistic-missile program, of supporting Syria’s Bashar al-Assad regime, and of fomenting unrest in Yemen, Lebanon, and Iraq. Indeed, Iran’s influence in Iraq has become a key point of friction between the two countries as the fragile Iraqi state tries to form a government. Both countries have a strong influence in Iraq that they are keen to preserve. In past years, they have maintained a tacit understanding on their respective allies in the country.

But last week, the U.S. pulled American diplomats from the consulate in Basra, just days after accusing Iran of not preventing rockets being fired at the facility. On Wednesday, Pompeo repeated those remarks, holding Tehran responsible.

“Iran is the origin of the current threat to Americans in Iraq,” he said. “Our intelligence in this regard is solid. We can see the hand of the ayatollah and his henchmen supporting these attacks on the United States.”

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/10/pompeo-iran-treaty-of-amity/572050/

 

Pompeo announces termination of 1955 treaty with Iran after sanctions ruling

Last Updated Oct 3, 2018 2:14 PM EDT

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Wednesday that the United States would be terminating a 1955-era treaty of amity with Iran that regulates economic and consular ties between the two countries. Pompeo called it a move that was  “39 years overdue.”

Ties between the two nations have been strained for decades but have come to a head since the Trump administration moved to pull out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. The administration has admonished Iran and the regime’s leadership for its “malign behavior” and for pursuing nuclear ambitions.

The move to end the treaty comes after the United Nations’ top court on Wednesday ordered the United States to lift sanctions on “humanitarian” goods to Iran that Mr. Trump re-imposed after pulling out of the nuclear pact. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) unanimously ruled that Washington “shall remove by means of its choosing any impediments arising from the measures announced on May 8 to the free exportation to Iran of medicines and medical devices, food and agricultural commodities” as well as airplane parts, Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf wrote.

The court said sanctions on goods “required for humanitarian needs… may have a serious detrimental impact on the health and lives of individuals on the territory of Iran.”

Pompeo said Iran had brought a “meritless case” to the ICJ, alleging violations of the 1955 pact, and he suggested Iran wants to challenge the U.S. decision to pull out of the nuclear deal.

“Iran has attempted to interfere with the sovereign rights of the United States to take lawful actions as necessary to protect our national security and Iran is abusing the ICJ for political and propaganda purposes,” said Pompeo.

Pompeo said in the meantime, the U.S. will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the Iranian people, but called on Iranian leadership to spend money on its own people, instead of “fomenting terror around the world.”

“Those are dollars the Iranian leadership is squandering, they could be providing humanitarian assistance to their own people but have chosen a different path,” he said.

In addition to leaving the amity treaty, national security adviser John Bolton announced during Wednesday’s press briefing that the U.S. will also withdraw from the Optional Protocol and Dispute Resolution to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, in connection with a case brought by the Palestinians to the ICJ challenging the United States’ embassy move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem earlier this year.

“We will commence a review of all international agreements that may still expose the US to purported binding jurisdiction dispute resolution in the International Court of Justice — admin will conduct a review of all its involvement with the International Court of Justice,” he said.

Bolton told reporters that the U.S. remains a party to the underlying Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, “and we expect all other parties to abide by their international obligations under the convention.”

The administration’s latest comments came after President Trump chaired a meeting of the UN Security Council last week and emphasized the importance of keeping the world free of the scourge of chemical weapons. The meeting focused on the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, particularly in Iran.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/mike-pompeo-speaks-to-reporters-at-state-department-live-stream/

Bolton calls U.N. world court ‘politicized,’ U.S. to limit exposure

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States is taking steps to avoid exposure to binding decisions by the International Court of Justice, the U.S. national security adviser John Bolton said on Wednesday as he accused the U.N. court of being “politicized and ineffective.”

U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton answers a question from a reporter about how he refers to Palestine during a news conference in the White House briefing room in Washington, U.S.,
October 3, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo earlier on Wednesday said that Washington was terminating a treaty of amity with Tehran, after the International Court ordered the United States to ensure that sanctions against Iran, due to be tightened next month, did not affect humanitarian aid or civil aviation.

The ICJ, based in The Hague, in the Netherlands, is the United Nations’ venue for resolving disputes between nations.

There have been mounting concerns among U.S. allies about the Trump administration’s commitment to multilateralism.

In the nearly two years since being elected, President Donald Trump has withdrawn the United States from a nuclear agreement between six powers and Iran, pulled out of a global climate accord, left the U.N. cultural agency, and threatened NATO military allies that the United States would “go its own way” if members did not spend more on defense.

U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton answers questions from reporters after announcing that the U.S. will withdraw from the Vienna protocol and the 1955 “Treaty of Amity” with Iran as White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders looks on during a news conference in the White House briefing room in Washington, U.S., October 3, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis

Wednesday’s ruling by the International Court handed a small victory to Tehran, which had argued that sanctions imposed since May by the Trump administration violated the terms of a 1955 Treaty of Amity between the two countries.

Bolton, citing what he called “Iran’s abuse of the ICJ,” said that the United States would withdraw from the “optional protocol” under the 1961 Vienna Convention of Diplomatic Relations.

“We will commence a review of all international agreements that may still expose the United States to purported binding jurisdiction, dispute resolution in the International Court of Justice,” Bolton said on Wednesday. “The United States will not sit idly by as baseless politicized claims are brought against us.”The decision to withdraw from the optional protocol follows a complaint brought by the Palestinians in September, which challenged Washington’s decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The Vienna Convention is an international treaty setting out diplomatic relations between states. It is often cited as a means to provide diplomatic immunity.

In 2005, the Bush administration took issue with the ICJ after it ruled that the execution of a Mexican national in Texas breached U.S. obligations under international law.

The Palestinians argued that the U.S. government’s placement of its embassy in Jerusalem violated an international treaty and that it should be moved.

“This really has less to do with Iran and the Palestinians than with the continued consistent policy of the United States to reject the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice, which we think is politicized and ineffective,” Bolton said.

He added: “I’d like to stress the United States remains a party to the underlying Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and we expect all other parties to abide by their international obligations under the convention.”

Palestine was recognized by the U.N. General Assembly in 2012 as a non-member observer state, though its statehood is not recognized by either Israel or the United States.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-diplomacy-treaty/bolton-calls-u-n-world-court-politicized-u-s-to-limit-exposure-idUSKCN1MD2CP

Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights (United States–Iran)

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The Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights between the United States and Iran was signed in Tehran on August 15, 1955 and entered into force on 16 June 1957.[1]

On 3 October 2018, following on the same day of a ruling by the International Court of JusticeUnited States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States “is terminating” the treaty.[2] On the same day, the termination of the treaty with the Pahlavi Iran was reiterated by John Bolton.[3]

References

International Court of Justice

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International Court of Justice
Cour internationale de justice
International Court of Justice Seal.svg

International Court of Justice Seal
Established 1945 (PCIJ dissolved in 1946)
Country Worldwide193 state parties
Location The HagueNetherlands
Coordinates 52°05′11.8″N 4°17′43.8″ECoordinates52°05′11.8″N 4°17′43.8″E
Authorized by
Judge term length 9 years
No. of positions 15
Website www.icj-cij.org
President
Currently Abdulqawi Yusuf
Since 6 February 2018
Lead position ends 5 February 2020
Vice President
Currently Xue Hanqin
Since 6 February 2018
Lead position ends 5 February 2020

The International Court of Justice (abbreviated ICJ; commonly referred to as the World Court)[1] is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations (UN). It settles legal disputes between member states and gives advisory opinions to authorized UN organs and specialized agencies. It comprises a panel of 15 judges elected by the General Assembly and Security Council for nine-year terms. It is seated in the Peace Palace in The HagueNetherlands.[2]

Activities

The Peace Palace in The Hague, Netherlands, seat of the ICJ

Established in 1945 by the UN Charter, the court began work in 1946 as the successor to the Permanent Court of International Justice. The Statute of the International Court of Justice, similar to that of its predecessor, is the main constitutional document constituting and regulating the court.[3]

The court’s workload covers a wide range of judicial activity. After the court ruled that the United States‘s covert war against Nicaragua was in violation of international law (Nicaragua v. United States), the United States withdrew from compulsory jurisdiction in 1986 to accept the court’s jurisdiction only on a case-by-case basis.[4] Chapter XIV of the United Nations Charter authorizes the UN Security Council to enforce Court rulings. However, such enforcement is subject to the veto power of the five permanent members of the Council, which the United States used in the Nicaragua case.[5]

Composition

Public hearing at the ICJ.

The ICJ is composed of fifteen judges elected to nine-year terms by the UN General Assembly and the UN Security Council from a list of people nominated by the national groups in the Permanent Court of Arbitration. The election process is set out in Articles 4–19 of the ICJ statute. Elections are staggered, with five judges elected every three years to ensure continuity within the court. Should a judge die in office, the practice has generally been to elect a judge in a special election to complete the term.

No two judges may be nationals of the same country. According to Article 9, the membership of the court is supposed to represent the “main forms of civilization and of the principal legal systems of the world”. Essentially, that has meant common lawcivil law and socialist law (now post-communist law).

There is an informal understanding that the seats will be distributed by geographic regions so that there are five seats for Western countries, three for African states (including one judge of francophone civil law, one of Anglophone common law and one Arab), two for Eastern European states, three for Asian states and two for Latin American and Caribbean states.[6] For most of the court’s history, the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (FranceRussiaChina, the United Kingdom, and the United States) have always had a judge serving, thereby occupying three of the Western seats, one of the Asian seats and one of the Eastern European seats. Exceptions have been China not having a judge on the court from 1967 to 1985, during which time it did not put forward a candidate, and British judge Sir Christopher Greenwood being withdrawn as a candidate for election for a second nine-year term on the bench in 2017, leaving no judges from the United Kingdom on the court.[7] Greenwood had been supported by the UN Security Council but failed to get a majority in the UN General Assembly.[7] Indian judge Dalveer Bhandari instead took the seat.[7]

Article 6 of the Statute provides that all judges should be “elected regardless of their nationality among persons of high moral character” who are either qualified for the highest judicial office in their home states or known as lawyers with sufficient competence in international law. Judicial independence is dealt with specifically in Articles 16–18. Judges of the ICJ are not able to hold any other post or act as counsel. In practice, members of the court have their own interpretation of these rules and allow them to be involved in outside arbitration and hold professional posts as long as there is no conflict of interest. A judge can be dismissed only by a unanimous vote of the other members of the court.[8] Despite these provisions, the independence of ICJ judges has been questioned. For example, during the Nicaragua case, the United States issued a communiqué suggesting that it could not present sensitive material to the court because of the presence of judges from Eastern bloc states.[9]

Judges may deliver joint judgments or give their own separate opinions. Decisions and Advisory Opinions are by majority, and, in the event of an equal division, the President’s vote becomes decisive, which occurred in the Legality of the Use by a State of Nuclear Weapons in Armed Conflict (Opinion requested by WHO), [1996] ICJ Reports 66. Judges may also deliver separate dissenting opinions.

Ad hoc judges[

Article 31 of the statute sets out a procedure whereby ad hoc judges sit on contentious cases before the court. The system allows any party to a contentious case (if it otherwise does not have one of that party’s nationals sitting on the court) to select one additional person to sit as a judge on that case only. It is thus possible that as many as seventeen judges may sit on one case.

The system may seem strange when compared with domestic court processes, but its purpose is to encourage states to submit cases. For example, if a state knows that it will have a judicial officer who can participate in deliberation and offer other judges local knowledge and an understanding of the state’s perspective, it may be more willing to submit to the jurisdiction of the court. Although this system does not sit well with the judicial nature of the body, it is usually of little practical consequence. Ad hoc judges usually (but not always) vote in favour of the state that appointed them and thus cancel each other out.[10]

Chambers

Generally, the court sits as full bench, but in the last fifteen years, it has on occasion sat as a chamber. Articles 26–29 of the statute allow the court to form smaller chambers, usually 3 or 5 judges, to hear cases. Two types of chambers are contemplated by Article 26: firstly, chambers for special categories of cases, and second, the formation of ad hoc chambers to hear particular disputes. In 1993, a special chamber was established, under Article 26(1) of the ICJ statute, to deal specifically with environmental matters (although it has never been used).

Ad hoc chambers are more frequently convened. For example, chambers were used to hear the Gulf of Maine Case (Canada/US).[11] In that case, the parties made clear they would withdraw the case unless the court appointed judges to the chamber acceptable to the parties. Judgments of chambers may either less authority than full Court judgments or diminish the proper interpretation of universal international law informed by a variety of cultural and legal perspectives. On the other hand, the use of chambers might encourage greater recourse to the court and thus enhance international dispute resolution.[12]

Current composition

As of 22 June 2018, the composition of the court is as follows:[13][14]

Name Nationality Position Term began Term ends
Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf  Somalia Presidenta 2009 2027
Xue Hanqin  China Vice-Presidenta 2010 2021
Yuji Iwasawa  Japan Member 2018 2021
Peter Tomka  Slovakia Member 2003 2021
Mohamed Bennouna  Morocco Member 2006 2024
Antônio Augusto Cançado Trindade     Brazil Member 2009 2027
Nawaf Salam  Lebanon Member 2018 2027
Ronny Abraham  France Member 2005 2027
Joan E. Donoghue  United States Member 2010 2024
Giorgio Gaja  Italy Member 2012 2021
Julia Sebutinde  Uganda Member 2012 2021
Dalveer Bhandari  India Member 2012 2021
James Crawford  Australia Member 2015 2024
Kirill Gevorgian  Russia Member 2015 2024
Patrick Lipton Robinson  Jamaica Member 2015 2024
Philippe Couvreur  Belgium Registrar 2014 2021
a 2018–2021.

Presidents

# President Start End Country
1 José Gustavo Guerrero 1946 1949  El Salvador
2 Jules Basdevant 1949 1952  France
3 Arnold McNair 1952 1955  United Kingdom
4 Green Hackworth 1955 1958  United States
5 Helge Klæstad 1958 1961  Norway
6 Bohdan Winiarski 1961 1964  Poland
7 Percy Spender 1964 1967  Australia
8 José Bustamante y Rivero 1967 1970  Peru
9 Muhammad Zafarullah Khan 1970 1973  Pakistan
10 Manfred Lachs 1973 1976  Poland
11 Eduardo Jiménez de Aréchaga 1976 1979  Uruguay
12 Humphrey Waldock 1979 1981  United Kingdom
13 Taslim Elias 1982 1985  Nigeria
14 Nagendra Singh 1985 1988  India
15 José Ruda 1988 1991  Argentina
16 Robert Jennings 1991 1994  United Kingdom
17 Mohammed Bedjaoui 1994 1997  Algeria
18 Stephen Schwebel 1997 2000  United States
19 Gilbert Guillaume 2000 2003  France
20 Shi Jiuyong 2003 2006  China
21 Rosalyn Higgins 2006 2009  United Kingdom
22 Hisashi Owada 2009 2012  Japan
23 Peter Tomka 2012 2015  Slovakia
24 Ronny Abraham 2015 2018  France
25 Abdulqawi Yusuf 2018  Somalia

Jurisdiction

  Parties upon becoming a UN member
  Parties prior to joining the UN under Article 93
  UN observer states that are not parties

As stated in Article 93 of the UN Charter, all 193 UN members are automatically parties to the court’s statute.[15] Non-UN members may also become parties to the court’s statute under the Article 93(2) procedure. For example, before becoming a UN member state, Switzerland used this procedure in 1948 to become a party, and Nauru became a party in 1988.[16] Once a state is a party to the court’s statute, it is entitled to participate in cases before the court. However, being a party to the statute does not automatically give the court jurisdiction over disputes involving those parties. The issue of jurisdiction is considered in the three types of ICJ cases: contentious issues, incidental jurisdiction, and advisory opinions.[17]

Contentious issues

File:Eerste na-oorlogse zitting van het Internationaal Hof van Justititie Weeknummer 48-09 - Open Beelden - 30541.ogv

First gathering after Second World War, Dutch newsreel from 1946

In contentious cases (adversarial proceedings seeking to settle a dispute), the ICJ produces a binding ruling between states that agree to submit to the ruling of the court. Only states may be parties in contentious cases. Individuals, corporations, parts of a federal state, NGOs, UN organs and self-determination groups are excluded from direct participation in cases although the court may receive information from public international organizations. That does not preclude non-state interests from being the subject of proceedings if a state brings the case against another. For example, a state may, in cases of “diplomatic protection”, bring a case on behalf of one of its nationals or corporations.[18]

Jurisdiction is often a crucial question for the court in contentious cases. (See Procedure below.) The key principle is that the ICJ has jurisdiction only on the basis of consent. Article 36 outlines four bases on which the court’s jurisdiction may be founded:

  • First, 36(1) provides that parties may refer cases to the court (jurisdiction founded on “special agreement” or “compromis“). This method is based on explicit consent rather than true compulsory jurisdiction. It is, perhaps, the most effective basis for the court’s jurisdiction because the parties concerned have a desire for the dispute to be resolved by the court and are thus more likely to comply with the court’s judgment.
  • Second, 36(1) also gives the court jurisdiction over “matters specifically provided for… in treaties and conventions in force”. Most modern treaties contain a compromissory clause, providing for dispute resolution by the ICJ.[19]Cases founded on compromissory clauses have not been as effective as cases founded on special agreement since a state may have no interest in having the matter examined by the court and may refuse to comply with a judgment. For example, during the Iran hostage crisis, Iran refused to participate in a case brought by the US based on a compromissory clause contained in the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and did not comply with the judgment.[20] Since the 1970s, the use of such clauses has declined. Many modern treaties set out their own dispute resolution regime, often based on forms of arbitration.[21]
  • Third, Article 36(2) allows states to make optional clause declarations accepting the court’s jurisdiction. The label “compulsory” sometimes placed on Article 36(2) jurisdiction is misleading since declarations by states are voluntary. Furthermore, many declarations contain reservations, such as exclusion from jurisdiction certain types of disputes (“ratione materia“).[22] The principle of reciprocity may further limit jurisdiction. As of February 2011, sixty-six states had a declaration in force.[23] Of the permanent Security Council members, only the United Kingdom has a declaration. In the court’s early years, most declarations were made by industrialized countries. Since the Nicaragua Case, declarations made by developing countries have increased, reflecting a growing confidence in the court since the 1980s.[citation needed] Industrialized countries, however, have sometimes increased exclusions or removed their declarations in recent years. Examples include the United States, as mentioned previously, and Australia, which modified its declaration in 2002 to exclude disputes on maritime boundaries (most likely to prevent an impending challenge from East Timor, which gained their independence two months later).[24]
  • Finally, 36(5) provides for jurisdiction on the basis of declarations made under the Permanent Court of International Justice‘s statute. Article 37 of the Statute similarly transfers jurisdiction under any compromissory clause in a treaty that gave jurisdiction to the PCIJ.
  • In addition, the court may have jurisdiction on the basis of tacit consent (forum prorogatum). In the absence of clear jurisdiction under Article 36, jurisdiction is established if the respondent accepts ICJ jurisdiction explicitly or simply pleads on the merits. The notion arose in the Corfu Channel Case (UK v Albania) (1949), in which the court held that a letter from Albania stating that it submitted to the jurisdiction of the ICJ was sufficient to grant the court jurisdiction.

Incidental jurisdiction

Until rendering a final judgment, the court has competence to order interim measures for the protection of the rights of a party to a dispute. One or both parties to a dispute may apply the ICJ for issuing interim measures. In the Frontier Dispute Case, both parties to the dispute, Burkina Faso and Mali submitted an application to the court to indicate interim measures.[25] Incidental jurisdiction of the court derives from the Article 41 of the Statute of it.[26] Such as the final judgment, the order for interim measures of the court are binding on state parties to the dispute. The ICJ has competence to indicate interim measures only if the prima facie jurisdiction is satisfied.

Advisory opinions

Audience of the “Accordance with International Law of the Unilateral Declaration of Independence by the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo”

An advisory opinion is a function of the court open only to specified United Nations bodies and agencies. The UN Charter grants the General Assembly or the Security Council a power to request the court to issue an advisory opinion on any legal question. Other organs of the UN rather than GA and SC may not request an advisory opinion of the ICJ unless the General Assembly authorizes them. Other organs of the UN only request an advisory opinion of the court regarding the matters falling into the scope of their activities.[27] On receiving a request, the court decides which states and organizations might provide useful information and gives them an opportunity to present written or oral statements. Advisory opinions were intended as a means by which UN agencies could seek the court’s help in deciding complex legal issues that might fall under their respective mandates.

In principle, the court’s advisory opinions are only consultative in character but they are influential and widely respected. Certain instruments or regulations can provide in advance that the advisory opinion shall be specifically binding on particular agencies or states, but inherently, they are non-binding under the Statute of the Court. This non-binding character does not mean that advisory opinions are without legal effect, because the legal reasoning embodied in them reflects the court’s authoritative views on important issues of international law. In arriving at them, the court follows essentially the same rules and procedures that govern its binding judgments delivered in contentious cases submitted to it by sovereign states.

An advisory opinion derives its status and authority from the fact that it is the official pronouncement of the principal judicial organ of the United Nations.[28]

Advisory opinions have often been controversial because the questions asked are controversial or the case was pursued as an indirect way of bringing what is really a contentious case before the court. Examples of advisory opinions can be found in the section advisory opinions in the List of International Court of Justice cases article. One such well-known advisory opinion is the Nuclear Weapons Case.

ICJ and the Security Council

Article 94 establishes the duty of all UN members to comply with decisions of the court involving them. If parties do not comply, the issue may be taken before the Security Council for enforcement action. There are obvious problems with such a method of enforcement. If the judgment is against one of the permanent five members of the Security Council or its allies, any resolution on enforcement would then be vetoed. That occurred, for example, after the Nicaragua case, when Nicaragua brought the issue of the United States’ noncompliance with the court’s decision before the Security Council.[9] Furthermore, if the Security Council refuses to enforce a judgment against any other state, there is no method of forcing the state to comply. Furthermore, the most effective form to take action for the Security Council, coercive action under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, can be justified only if international peace and security are at stake. The Security Council has never done that so far.

The relationship between the ICJ and the Security Council, and the separation of their powers, was considered by the court in 1992 in the Pan Am case. The court had to consider an application from Libya for the order of provisional measures to protect its rights, which, it alleged, were being infringed by the threat of economic sanctions by the United Kingdom and United States. The problem was that these sanctions had been authorized by the Security Council, which resulted in a potential conflict between the Chapter VII functions of the Security Council and the judicial function of the court. The court decided, by eleven votes to five, that it could not order the requested provisional measures because the rights claimed by Libya, even if legitimate under the Montreal Convention, could not be prima facieregarded as appropriate since the action was ordered by the Security Council. In accordance with Article 103 of the UN Charter, obligations under the Charter took precedence over other treaty obligations. Nevertheless, the court declared the application admissible in 1998.[29] A decision on the merits has not been given since the parties (United Kingdom, United States, and Libya) settled the case out of court in 2003.

There was a marked reluctance on the part of a majority of the court to become involved in a dispute in such a way as to bring it potentially into conflict with the Council. The court stated in the Nicaragua case that there is no necessary inconsistency between action by the Security Council and adjudication by the ICJ. However, when there is room for conflict, the balance appears to be in favour of the Security Council.

Should either party fail “to perform the obligations incumbent upon it under a judgment rendered by the Court”, the Security Council may be called upon to “make recommendations or decide upon measures” if the Security Council deems such actions necessary. In practice, the court’s powers have been limited by the unwillingness of the losing party to abide by the court’s ruling and by the Security Council’s unwillingness to impose consequences. However, in theory, “so far as the parties to the case are concerned, a judgment of the Court is binding, final and without appeal”, and “by signing the Charter, a State Member of the United Nations undertakes to comply with any decision of the International Court of Justice in a case to which it is a party.”

For example, the United States had previously accepted the court’s compulsory jurisdiction upon its creation in 1946 but in 1984, after Nicaragua v. United States, withdrew its acceptance following the court’s judgment that called on the US to “cease and to refrain” from the “unlawful use of force” against the government of Nicaragua. The court ruled (with only the American judge dissenting) that the United States was “in breach of its obligation under the Treaty of Friendship with Nicaragua not to use force against Nicaragua” and ordered the United States to pay war reparations.[9]

Examples of contentious cases

  • A complaint by the United States in 1980 that Iran was detaining American diplomats in Tehran in violation of international law.[30]
  • A dispute between Tunisia and Libya over the delimitation of the continental shelf between them.[31]
  • A complaint by Iran after the shooting down of Iran Air Flight 655 by the United States Navy guided missile cruiser.[32]
  • A dispute over the course of the maritime boundary dividing the U.S. and Canada in the Gulf of Maine area.[33]
  • A complaint by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia against the member states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization regarding their actions in the Kosovo War. This was denied on 15 December 2004 because of lack of jurisdiction, the FRY not being a party to the ICJ statute at the time it made the application.[34]
  • A complaint by the Republic of Macedonia (former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) that Greece is, by vetoing its accession to NATO, in violation of the Interim Accord of 13 September 1995[35] between the two countries. The complaint was decided in favour of Macedonia on 5 December 2011.[36]
  • A complaint by the Democratic Republic of the Congo that the DRC’s sovereignty had been violated by Uganda and that DRC had lost billions of dollars worth of resources,[37] was decided in favour of the DRC.[38]
  • A complaint by the Republic of India regarding death penalty awarded to Indian citizen by a Pakistani military court. [39] Pakistan arrested Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian citizen for alleged espionage and subversive activities.

Law applied

When deciding cases, the court applies international law as summarized in Article 38 of the ICJ Statute, which provides that in arriving at its decisions the court shall apply international conventions, international custom and the “general principles of law recognized by civilized nations.” It may also refer to academic writing (“the teachings of the most highly qualified publicists of the various nations”) and previous judicial decisions to help interpret the law although the court is not formally bound by its previous decisions under the doctrine of stare decisisArticle 59 makes clear that the common law notion of precedent or stare decisis does not apply to the decisions of the ICJ. The court’s decision binds only the parties to that particular controversy. Under 38(1)(d), however, the court may consider its own previous decisions.

If the parties agree, they may also grant the court the liberty to decide ex aequo et bono (“in justice and fairness”),[40] granting the ICJ the freedom to make an equitable decision based on what is fair under the circumstances. That provision has not been used in the court’s history. So far, the International Court of Justice has dealt with about 130 cases.

Procedure

The ICJ is vested with the power to make its own rules. Court procedure is set out in the Rules of Court of the International Court of Justice 1978 (as amended on 29 September 2005).[12]

Cases before the ICJ will follow a standard pattern. The case is lodged by the applicant, which files a written memorial setting out the basis of the court’s jurisdiction and the merits of its claim. The respondent may accept the court’s jurisdiction and file its own memorial on the merits of the case.

Preliminary objections

A respondent that does not wish to submit to the jurisdiction of the court may raise preliminary objections. Any such objections must be ruled upon before the court can address the merits of the applicant’s claim. Often, a separate public hearing is held on the preliminary objections and the court will render a judgment. Respondents normally file preliminary objections to the jurisdiction of the court and/or the admissibility of the case. Inadmissibility refers to a range of arguments about factors the court should take into account in deciding jurisdiction, such as the fact that the issue is not justiciable or that it is not a “legal dispute”.

In addition, objections may be made because all necessary parties are not before the court. If the case necessarily requires the court to rule on the rights and obligations of a state that has not consented to the court’s jurisdiction, the court does not proceed to issue a judgment on the merits.

If the court decides it has jurisdiction and the case is admissible, the respondent then is required to file a Memorial addressing the merits of the applicant’s claim. Once all written arguments are filed, the court holds a public hearing on the merits.

Once a case has been filed, any party (usually the applicant) may seek an order from the court to protect the status quo pending the hearing of the case. Such orders are known as Provisional (or Interim) Measures and are analogous to interlocutory injunctions in United States law. Article 41 of the statute allows the court to make such orders. The court must be satisfied to have prima facie jurisdiction to hear the merits of the case before it grants provisional measures.

Applications to intervene

In cases in which a third state’s interests are affected, that state may be permitted to intervene in the case and participate as a full party. Under Article 62, a state “with an interest of a legal nature” may apply; however, it is within the court’s discretion whether or not to allow the intervention. Intervention applications are rare, and the first successful application occurred only in 1991.

Judgment and remedies

Once deliberation has taken place, the court issues a majority opinion. Individual judges may issue concurring opinions (if they agree with the outcome reached in the judgment of the court but differ in their reasoning) or dissenting opinions (if they disagree with the majority). No appeal is possible, but any party may ask for the court to clarify if there is a dispute as to the meaning or scope of the court’s judgment.[41]

Criticisms

The International Court has been criticized with respect to its rulings, its procedures, and its authority. As with criticisms of the United Nations, many of these criticisms refer more to the general authority assigned to the body by member states through its charter than to specific problems with the composition of judges or their rulings. Major criticisms include the following:[42][43][44]

  • “Compulsory” jurisdiction is limited to cases where both parties have agreed to submit to its decision, and so instances of aggression tend to be automatically escalated to and adjudicated by the Security Council. According to the sovereignty principle of international law, no nation is superior or inferior against another. Therefore, there is no entity that could force the states into practice of the law or punish the states in case any violation of international law occurs. Therefore, the absence of binding force means that the 193 member states of the ICJ do not necessarily have to accept the jurisdiction. Moreover, membership in the UN and ICJ does not give the court automatic jurisdiction over the member states, but it is the consent of each state to follow the jurisdiction that matters.
  • Organizations, private enterprises, and individuals cannot have their cases taken to the International Court or appeal a national supreme court’s ruling. UN agencies likewise cannot bring up a case except in advisory opinions (a process initiated by the court and non-binding). Only states can bring the cases and become the defendants of the cases. This also means that the potential victims of crimes against humanity, such as minor ethnic groups or indigenous peoples, may not have appropriate backing by a state.
  • Other existing international thematic courts, such as the ICC, are not under the umbrella of the International Court. Unlike ICJ, international thematic courts like ICC work independently from United Nations. Such dualistic structure between various international courts sometimes makes it hard for the courts to engage in effective and collective jurisdiction.
  • The International Court does not enjoy a full separation of powers, with permanent members of the Security Council being able to veto enforcement of cases, even those to which they consented to be bound.[45] Because the jurisdiction does not have binding force itself, in many cases, the instances of aggression are adjudicated by Security Council by adopting a resolution, etc. There is, therefore, a likelihood for the permanent member states of Security Council to avoid the legal responsibility brought up by International Court of Justice, as shown in the example of Nicaragua v. United States.

See also

Notes …

Further reading

  • Dunne, Michael. “Isolationism of a Kind: Two Generations of World Court Historiography in the United States,” Journal of American Studies (1987) 21#3 pp 327–351.
  • Rosenne S., “Rosenne’s the world court: what it is and how it works 6th ed (Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff, 2003).
  • Kwiatkowska, Barbara, “Decisions of the World Court Relevant to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea”. Relevant to the UNCLOS, dedicated to Former ICJ President Stephen M. Schwebel (Brill, 2010)
  • Van Der Wolf W. & De Ruiter D., “The International Court of Justice: Facts and Documents About the History and Work of the Court” (International Courts Association, 2011)
  • Wilde, Ralph and Charlesworth, Hilary and Schrijver, Nico and Krisch, Nico and Chimni, B. S. and Gowlland-Debbas, Vera and Klabbers, Jan and Yee, Sienho and Shearer, Ivan, United Nations Reform Through Practice: Report of the International Law Association Study Group on United Nations Reform (December 11, 2011).
  • Kolb, Robert, The International Court of Justice (Hart Publishing: Oxford, 2013).
  • Bowett, D W. The International court of justice : process, practice and procedure (British Institute of International and Comparative Law: London, 1997).
  • Sienho Yee, Article 38 of the ICJ Statute and Applicable Law: Selected Issues in Recent Cases, 7 Journal of International Dispute Settlement (2016), 472–498.
  • Andreas Zimmermann, Christian Tomuschat, Karin Oellers-Frahm & Christian J. Tams (eds.), The Statute of the International Court of Justice: A Commentary (2d. ed. October 2012, Oxford University Press).

External links

Lectures

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

Story 2: President Trump Mocks Kavanaugh Accuser At Rally and FBI Sends Supplemental Background on Judge Kavanaugh To White House and Senate — Expect Senate Confirmation Vote Saturday — Videos —

See the source image

Trump mocks Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s Senate testimony

At a “Make America Great Again” rally Tuesday night in Mississippi, President Trump mocked testimony from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who is Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s most prominent accusers of sexual assault. Ford appeared Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee

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The Vicious Treatment of Judge Kavanaugh Guarantees Red Wave Devastation in Midterms and Trump 2020

 

The FBI confidential Kavanaugh report: Who’s allowed to read it and where

All 100 senators will have secure access to the new information, but not their staffs. They can’t speak publicly about what’s in the file.
by Frank Thorp V and Garrett Haake / 
Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., leaves a closed meeting in the Capitol on Russia sanctions on July 31, 2018.

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., leaves a closed meeting in the Capitol’s secure room on Russia sanctions on July 31, 2018.Bill Clark / CQ-Roll Call, Inc.

WASHINGTON — The FBI’s supplemental background investigation will be delivered soon to Capitol Hill and added to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s current background investigation file.

What will be delivered, according to aides and senators, are the “302” forms of the FBI interviews, which summarize the contents of the interviews. The FBI will not be delivering findings or a conclusion as to who’s telling the truth in the case.

All 100 Senators will have access to the new information, but not their staffs. There also are 10 Judiciary Committee staffers who have access to the Kavanaugh file, which is a paper report — there are no pdf’s or emails of it. And it will not be made public.

OCT.03.201806:58

When the supplemental background investigation is delivered, it’s unclear how the information will be disseminated to all 100 Senators in a timely fashion considering that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to vote this week.

There are not multiple copies of the background investigation file, and senators cannot go pick it up and bring it home with them. They need to either go to a secure area designated in the Judiciary Committee offices, or a designated staffer can bring it to a senator and then return it.

Republican senators said Wednesday that the file will be held in the Senate SCIF (Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility), which is the classified area of the Capitol Visitor’s Center. The SCIF could be used so more senators can be accommodated than in the Judiciary Committee offices, which are fairly small.

According to committee aides and a document dictating how the file is to be handled, “The Security Manager shall maintain in a locked safe a log that reflects the date, time, and particular FBI background investigation report received by the Committee.”

The information in the background investigation file is not marked top secret or classified, but it is not to be leaked to even characterized. Senators are “not allowed to share any details whatsoever,” a committee aide said.

That rule will likely be tested.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/who-s-allowed-read-fbi-s-confidential-kavanaugh-report-how-n916441

 

Trump’s Mocking of Kavanaugh Accusers Stuns Senators Before Vote

  • Shannon Pettypiece

(Bloomberg) — President Donald Trump mocked two of the women who have come forward with claims that Brett Kavanaugh engaged in sexual assault and other misconduct in the 1980s, earning bipartisan criticism from U.S. senators currently weighing the Supreme Court nominee’s confirmation.

Speaking Tuesday night at a rally in Southaven, Mississippi, Trump attacked the credibility of Christine Blasey Ford, who last week testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that Kavanaugh drunkenly assaulted her during a high school party more than 30 years ago.

Trump's Mocking of Kavanaugh Accusers Stuns Senators Before Vote

The president, who days ago said Ford’s testimony was “very credible,” ridiculed her memory to cheers in the audience, suggesting certain details she didn’t recall were evidence that she wasn’t telling the truth.

“How did you get there? I don’t remember. Where was the place? I don’t remember,” Trump said, mocking Ford’s answers during last week’s hearing.

The remarks drew a rebuke Wednesday not just from Democrats but also Senator Jeff Flake, the Arizona Republican who forced an additional FBI investigation into the accusations against Kavanaugh by threatening to withhold his vote for confirmation.

Flake said Trump’s comments were “kind of appalling” in an interview with NBC News.

“There is no time and no place for remarks like that,” Flake said. “But to discuss something this sensitive at a political rally is just not right.”

Senator Susan Collins, a Maine Republican and key undecided vote in the Kavanaugh confirmation battle, was also critical of Trump.

“The president’s comments were just plain wrong,” Collins said in a statement.

A third undecided Republican, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, was asked whether Trump’s comments would affect her decision on whether to back Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

“I am taking everything into account and I think the comments by the president yesterday mocking Dr. Ford were wholly inappropriate,” Murkowski said.

Their remarks echoed those of Democrats, who condemned Trump as insensitive to Ford and women who had faced sexual harassment and assault. Ford, a California psychology professor, told the Senate that she is “100 percent” certain Kavanaugh was her attacker.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer assailed Trump’s comments.

“President Trump’s outright mockery of a sexual assault survivor, riddled as it was with falsehoods, was reprehensible, beneath the office of the presidency and beneath common decency from one person to another,” Schumer said on the Senate floor. “He’s ruining the norms of America. He’s so degrading the way people treat each other.”

Beto O’Rourke, the party’s candidate for U.S. Senate in Texas, tweeted that Ford “should be treated with dignity and respect — not demeaned and belittled by the President of the United States.”

Representative Pramila Jayapal, a Washington Democrat, tweeted that the remarks were “sadly what we expect from the president.”

“For a brief moment this week, I respected his relatively good comments about having a full investigation,” Jayapal said. “That lasted for a nanosecond.”

And Angus King, an independent U.S. senator from Maine who caucuses with Democrats, said in an interview with CNN that Trump’s comments “made me feel sort of sick.” The senior senator from King’s state, Republican Susan Collins, is seen as a crucial swing vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination.

Ford’s attorney, Michael Bromwich, called the president’s comments “a vicious, vile and soulless attack.”

“Is it any wonder that she was terrified to come forward, and that other sexual assault survivors are as well?” he tweeted. “She is a remarkable profile in courage. He is a profile in cowardice.”

GOP Senator Lindsey Graham, a strong backer of Kavanaugh, offered a milder criticism of the president while speaking to the Atlantic Festival on Wednesday. “President Trump went through a factual rendition that I didn’t particularly like, and I would tell him, knock it off. You’re not helping,” the senator said.

‘Scary Time’

On Monday, Trump said Kavanaugh’s testimony last week — which immediately followed Ford’s — showed that the nominee had “a little bit of difficulty” with alcohol when he was younger, undercutting Kavanaugh’s own portrayal of his drinking habits in high school and college.

Earlier Tuesday, the president previewed his change in tone as he departed the White House, saying “it’s a very scary time for young men in America when you can be guilty of something you may not be guilty of.” When asked whether he had a message for American women, Trump said: “Women are doing great.”

Trump's Mocking of Kavanaugh Accusers Stuns Senators Before Vote

At the Mississippi rally, where Trump was promoting the candidacy of Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith, Trump also turned his ire toward Julie Swetnick, who claims Kavanaugh took part in efforts at parties during high school to get girls intoxicated so that groups of boys could have sex with them.

“This woman had no clue what was going on, and yet she made the most horrible charges,” Trump said, pointing out that Kavanaugh went to Yale as apparent evidence that the claims were spurious.

Kavanaugh has denied Swetnick and Ford’s claims.

Midterm Effect

The controversy around Kavanaugh’s nomination has erupted just a month before the midterm elections that will determine control of Congress. Trump is logging multiple trips each week to rally support for Republican candidates he needs to win, and on Tuesday showed he’s ready to stoke voters by vociferously fighting for his nominee amid an FBI investigation into the allegations.

It isn’t clear how Trump’s mockery of the women will play politically. The Kavanaugh hearing crystallized what has become a central divide in American politics. On one side: women who for decades have suffered as their stories of sexual assault and harassment went ignored or ridiculed. On the other: conservative men aggrieved by a system they see as rigged against them and rife with unfair and reputation-destroying accusations.

Opinions of Ford’s testimony — on social media and television networks — were that she was powerful and believable. Her vivid, specific and heartbreaking account invited contrast with the angry bickering over Senate rules and procedures by lawmakers, as well as Kavanaugh’s subsequent combative testimony.

Kavanaugh’s repeated references to liking beer — and initial attempts to avoid answering a question on whether he had ever blacked out from alcohol use — have been the subject of parody, including a skit on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live.” Yale University classmate Charles Ludington released a statement saying Kavanaugh’s testimony — in which he eventually said he’d never blacked out — was a “blatant mischaracterization.”

The White House agreed on Monday to let the Federal Bureau of Investigation question more people in connection with the allegations that Kavanaugh was sexually abusive toward women following growing criticism that the probe was too constrained. But the bureau isn’t doing its own deep dive into the nominee’s alcohol use or whether he gave false testimony to a Senate panel last week, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Senate Majority Mitch McConnell has said the Senate will hold a confirmation vote for Kavanaugh this week.

https://www.bloombergquint.com/global-economics/treasuries-slide-asia-stocks-set-to-nudge-higher-markets-wrap

McConnell vows Republicans won’t be intimidated by Kavanaugh protesters

Published: Oct 3, 2018 1:07 p.m. ET

Senate majority leader cites harassment at airports, homes

By ROBERTSCHROEDER

WHITE HOUSE REPORTER
Reuters
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pushed back at protesters who are confronting Republicans over Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, saying members of the GOP won’t be prevented from taking a vote on President Donald Trump’s pick.

‘I want to make it clear to these people who are chasing my members around the hall here, or harassing them at the airports, or going to their homes: we will not be intimidated.’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

Kentucky Republican McConnell made his vow from the floor Wednesday as senators prepare to vote on the nomination of Kavanaugh this week. The judge has been accused of sexual assault, and the vote was delayed to allow for an FBI investigation. He has denied the charges.

The Hill reports McConnell and Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, were both confronted at Reagan National Airport outside Washington on Monday by women who said they were survivors of sexual assault. Protesters have also followed senators coming in and out of hearings this week.

Republicans hold a slim 51-seat majority in the Senate, so Kavanaugh’s nomination can afford no more than one GOP defection. In the event of a tie, Vice President Mike Pence would vote.

On Tuesday night, Trump mocked college professor Christine Blasey Ford, one of Kavanaugh’s accusers. Key GOP senators condemned the president’s comments.

Kaitlan Collins

@kaitlancollins

What the key senators think of President Trump ridiculing Christine Blasey Ford:
Flake: “Kind of appalling.”
Collins: “Just plain wrong.”
Murkowski: “Wholly inappropriate and unacceptable.”
But will it affect their votes on Kavanaugh? Flake says it won’t his.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/mcconnell-vows-republicans-wont-be-intimidated-by-kavanaugh-protesters-2018-10-03

Story 3: Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell Views on U.S. Economy and Monetary Policy — Videos —

LIVE: Fed Chair Jerome Powell Speaks at the Atlantic Festival – Oct. 3, 2018

What keeps US Fed’s Powell up at night? Everything

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell doesn't get much sleep worrying about potential risks to the economy

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell doesn’t get much sleep worrying about potential risks to the economy

Is inflation about to rise? Are interest rates too high? Or too low? Are economic risks lurking? These are the fears that keep US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell from getting a good night’s sleep.

While he was generally upbeat about the US economy, predicting that the good news could continue “effectively indefinitely,” when asked Wednesday what keeps him up at night, Powell said, “Basically everything.”

“Nobody wants a central banker who sleeps well. What good is that?” Powell told a forum hosted by The Atlantic.

Concerns about getting monetary policy right top the list but Powell said, “It’s a world full of risk. I probably lose sleep over different things every night.”

But even so, he noted that the US economy was seeing very low, and falling, unemployment along with moderate inflation.

“There is really no reason to think this cycle can’t continue for quite some time,” he said.

Whenever the next crisis comes, he predicted it will not look like the last one — and there are no signs of financial instability or banking issues — but would be something like a cyber-attack or global event.

Rising protectionism and slowing of an important economy like China would be “bad for American workers and the American economy,” he said.

But if President Donald Trump’s trade confrontations — which so far include cranking up tariffs on half of the goods imported from China — result in lower tariffs and better trade rules, “that will be good for us.”

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-6237419/What-keeps-US-Feds-Powell-night-Everything.html

Jerome Powell

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Jerome Powell
Jerome H. Powell.jpg
16th Chairman of the Federal Reserve
Assumed office
February 5, 2018
President Donald Trump
Deputy Richard Clarida
Preceded by Janet Yellen
Member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors
Assumed office
May 25, 2012
President Barack Obama
Donald Trump
Preceded by Frederic Mishkin
Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance
In office
1992–1993
President George H. W. Bush
Preceded by Robert R. Glauber
Succeeded by Frank N. Newman
Personal details
Born Jerome Hayden Powell
February 4, 1953 (age 65)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political party Republican[1]
Spouse(s)
Elissa Leonard (m. 1985)
Children 3
Residence Chevy Chase, Maryland, U.S.
Education Princeton University (AB)
Georgetown University (JD)
Net worth $112 million[2][3]

Jerome Hayden “Jay” Powell (born February 4, 1953) is the 16th and current Chairman of the Federal Reserve, serving in that office since February 2018. He was nominated to the Fed Chair position by President Donald Trump, and confirmed by the United States Senate.[4][5]

Powell earned a degree in politics from Princeton University in 1975 and a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center in 1979. He moved to investment banking in 1984, and has since worked for several financial institutions. He briefly served as Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance under President George H. W. Bush in 1992. More recently, he was a visiting scholar at the Bipartisan Policy Center from 2010 to 2012. He has served as a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors since 2012.

Early life and education

Powell was born on February 4, 1953 in Washington, D.C., as one of six children to Patricia (née Hayden; 1926–2010)[6] and Jerome Powell (1921–2007),[7] a lawyer in private practice and a World War II veteran.[8][9] His maternal grandfather, James J. Hayden, was Dean of the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University of America and later a lecturer at Georgetown Law School.[10] He had five siblings, Susan, Matthew, Tia, Libby and Monica.[8]

In 1972, Powell graduated from Georgetown Preparatory School, a Jesuit university-preparatory school. He received a Bachelor of Arts in politics from Princeton University in 1975, where his senior thesis was titled “South Africa: Forces for Change.”[11] In 1975–76, he spent a year as a legislative assistant to Pennsylvania Senator Richard Schweiker (R),[12][13] who had been named by Ronald Reagan as his probable vice presidential running mate on the 1976 ticket, had Reagan succeeded in securing the GOP nomination.

Powell earned a Juris Doctor degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1979, where he was editor-in-chief of the Georgetown Law Journal.[14]

Career

In 1979, Powell moved to New York City and became a clerk to Judge Ellsworth Van Graafeiland of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. From 1981 to 1983, Powell was a lawyer with Davis Polk & Wardwell, and from 1983 to 1984, he worked at the firm of Werbel & McMillen.[13]

From 1984 to 1990, Powell worked at Dillon, Read & Co., an investment bank, where he concentrated on financing, merchant banking, and mergers and acquisitions, rising to the position of vice president.[13][15]

Between 1990 and 1993, Powell worked in the United States Department of the Treasury, at which time Nicholas F. Brady, the former chairman of Dillon, Read & Co., was the United States Secretary of the Treasury. In 1992, Powell became the Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance after being nominated by George H. W. Bush.[13][15][12] During his stint at the Treasury, Powell oversaw the investigation and sanctioning of Salomon Brothers after one of its traders submitted false bids for a United States Treasury security.[16] Powell was also involved in the negotiations that made Warren Buffett the chairman of Salomon.[17]

In 1993, Powell began working as a managing director for Bankers Trust, but he quit in 1995 after the bank got into trouble when several customers suffered large losses due to derivatives. He then went back to work for Dillon, Read & Co.[15]

From 1997 to 2005, Powell was a partner at The Carlyle Group, where he founded and led the Industrial Group within the Carlyle U.S. Buyout Fund.[14][18]

After leaving Carlyle, Powell founded Severn Capital Partners, a private investment firm focused on specialty finance and opportunistic investments in the industrial sector.[19]

In 2008, Powell became a managing partner of the Global Environment Fund, a private equity and venture capital firm that invests in sustainable energy.[19]

Between 2010 and 2012, Powell was a visiting scholar at the Bipartisan Policy Center, a think tank in Washington, D.C., where he worked on getting Congress to raise the United States debt ceiling during the United States debt-ceiling crisis of 2011. Powell presented the implications to the economy and interest rates of a default or a delay in raising the debt ceiling.[18] He worked for a salary of $1 per year.[2]

Federal Reserve Board of Governors]

Powell speaks in 2015

In December 2011, along with Jeremy C. Stein, Powell was nominated to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors by President Barack Obama. The nomination included two people to help garner bipartisan support for both nominees since Stein’s nomination had previously been filibustered. Powell’s nomination was the first time that a president nominated a member of the opposition party for such a position since 1988.[1] He took office on May 25, 2012, to fill the unexpired term of Frederic Mishkin, who resigned. In January 2014, he was nominated for another term, and, in June 2014, he was confirmed by the United States Senate in a 67-24 vote for a 14-year term ending January 31, 2028.[20]

In 2013, Powell made a speech regarding financial regulation and ending “too big to fail“.[21] In April 2017, he took over oversight of the “too big to fail” banks.[22]

Chair of the Federal Reserve[edit]

Powell sworn in as chair in 2018

On November 2, 2017, President Donald Trump nominated Powell to serve as the Chair of the Federal Reserve.[23]

On December 5, 2017, the Senate Banking Committee approved Powell’s nomination to be Chair in a 22–1 vote, with Senator Elizabeth Warren casting the lone dissenting vote.[24] His nomination was confirmed by the Senate on January 23, 2018 by a 84–13 vote.[25] Powell assumed office as Chair on February 5, 2018.

Economic philosophy

Monetary policy

A survey of 30 economists in March 2017 noted that Powell was slightly more of a monetary dove than the average member of the Board of Governors.[citation needed] However, The Bloomberg Intelligence Fed Spectrometer rated Powell as neutral (i.e. neither a hawk nor a dove). Powell has been a skeptic of round 3 of quantitative easing, initiated in 2012, although he did vote in favor of implementation.[26]

Financial regulation

Powell testifies before the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs in 2018

Powell “appears to largely support” the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, although he has stated that “we can do it more efficiently”.[26] In an October 2017 speech, Powell stated that higher capital and liquidity requirements and stress tests have made the financial system safer and must be preserved. However, he also stated that the Volcker Rule should be re-written to exclude smaller banks.[26]

Housing finance reform

In a July 2017 speech, Powell said that, in regards to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the status quo is “unacceptable” and that the current situation “may feel comfortable, but it is also unsustainable”. He warned that “the next few years may present our last best chance” to “address the ultimate status of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac” and avoid “repeating the mistakes of the past”. Powell expressed concerns that, in the current situation, the government is responsible for mortgage defaults and that lending standards were too rigid, noting that these can be solved by encouraging “ample amounts of private capital to support housing finance activities”.[27]

Personal life

In 1985, Powell married Elissa Leonard.[9] They have three children[14] and live in Chevy Chase Village, Maryland, where Elissa is vice chair of the board of managers of the village.[28] In 2010, Powell was on the board of governors of Chevy Chase Club, a country club.[29]

Based on public filings, Powell’s net worth is estimated to be as much as $112 million.[2][3] He is the richest member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.[30]

Powell has served on the boards of charitable and educational institutions including DC Prep, a public charter school, the Bendheim Center for Finance at Princeton University, and The Nature Conservancy. He was also a founder of the Center City Consortium, a group of 16 parochial schools in the poorest areas of Washington, D.C.[18]

Powell is a registered Republican.[1]

References …

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

Story 4: Job Market Booming With Private Payroll Surge of 230,000 in September 2018 — Videos

ADP payrolls data doesn’t take Hurricane Florence into account, says Moody’s Mark Zandi

What Are Non Farm Payrolls?

U.S. Private Employers Boost Hiring; Activity Accelerates

 

ADP Research Institute®

September 2018: ADP Employment Reports

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT REPORT

230,000

Change in U.S. nonfarm private sector employment

View full report ›

SMALL BUSINESS REPORT

56,000

Change in employment among small businesses with 1-49 employees

View full report ›

NATIONAL FRANCHISE REPORT

-5,700

Change in U.S. franchise employment

View full report ›

 

Previous ADP Employment Reports

AUGUST 2018

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT REPORT

163,000

Change in U.S. nonfarm private sector employment

View full report ›

SMALL BUSINESS REPORT

21,000

Change in employment among small businesses with 1-49 employees

View full report ›

NATIONAL FRANCHISE REPORT

20,700

Change in U.S. franchise employment

View full report ›

JULY 2018

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT REPORT

219,000

Change in U.S. nonfarm private sector employment

View full report ›

SMALL BUSINESS REPORT

21,000

Change in employment among small businesses with 1-49 employees

View full report ›

NATIONAL FRANCHISE REPORT

15,100

Change in U.S. franchise employment

View full report ›

JUNE 2018

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT REPORT

177,000

Change in U.S. nonfarm private sector employment

View full report ›

SMALL BUSINESS REPORT

21,000

Change in employment among small businesses with 1-49 employees

View full report ›

NATIONAL FRANCHISE REPORT

13,800

Change in U.S. franchise employment

View full report ›

MAY 2018

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT REPORT

178,000

Change in U.S. nonfarm private sector employment

View full report ›

SMALL BUSINESS REPORT

21,000

Change in employment among small businesses with 1-49 employees

View full report ›

NATIONAL FRANCHISE REPORT

29,500

Change in U.S. franchise employment

View full report ›

 

About the Employment Reports

The ADP Research Institute® works in close collaboration with Moody’s Analytics and its experienced team of labor market researchers to publish monthly employment reports.

Report FAQs

http://www.adpemploymentreport.com/

 

‘Rip-roaring hot’ jobs market sees private payrolls surge by 230,000, highest since February

  • Private payrolls rose by 230,000 in September, according to the most recent count by ADP and Moody’s Analytics.
  • That was well ahead of expectations for 185,000 and the 168,000 jobs reported in August.
  • Moody’s economist Mark Zandi said the current pace suggests an unemployment rate of close to 3 percent in a year.

ADP September payrolls up 230,000

ADP September payrolls up 230,000  

Job growth surged in September to its highest level in seven months as the economy put up another show of strength, according to a report Wednesday from ADP and Moody’s Analytics.

Private companies added 230,000 more positions for the month, the best level since the 241,000 jobs added in February and well ahead of the 168,000 jobs added in August.

The total was well ahead of the 185,000 jobs expected by economists surveyed by Refinitiv (formerly Thomson Reuters).

Construction grew by 34,000 as goods-producing industries overall contributed 46,000 to the final count.

“This labor market is rip-roaring hot,” Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, told CNBC. “The risk that this economy overheats is very high, and this is one more piece of evidence of that.”

If the current pace continues, Zandi said he expects the unemployment rate to fall near 3 percent over the next year. The headline jobless rate currently is at 3.9 percent.

The ADP/Moody’s count comes two days ahead of the Labor Department’s closely watched nonfarm payrolls report. Economists also expect that report to show job growth of 185,000.

The jump came despite the disruption of Hurricane Florence, which ravaged the Carolinas and was expected to dent the jobs count. The nature of ADP’s methodology is such that it doesn’t include the storm victims because it only counts employees on payroll and doesn’t account for those displaced by temporary events.

“This overstates the case a little bit,” Zandi said. He added that the actual count could come down about 25,000 once the storm impact is considered.

Job gains were spread across industries, as services led with 184,000. Professional and business services contributed 70,000, while education and health services was next with 44,000, and trade, transportation, and utilities added 30,000. Leisure and hospitality and financial services each saw growth of 16,000.

There were several weak notes, however. Manufacturing added just 7,000, its weakest reading in a year, while Zandi said retail and mortgage banking also were weak.

Businesses with between 51 and 499 employees added the most by size, with 99,000 new hires. Large businesses added 75,000 while small firms contributed 56,000.

The August private payrolls count was revised up by 5,000.

The report comes at a strong time for the economy, which is coming off 4.2 percent GDP growth in the second quarter a number that could be above 4 percent for the third quarter as well. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell in a speech Tuesday characterized the economy outlook among forecasters as “remarkably positive.”

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1144, September 20, 2018, Story 1: President Trump Rocks at Make America Great Again Rally in Las Vegas Nevada —  Build The Wall With $25 Billion in Funding and Balance The Budget — We Need More Republicans — Videos — Story 2: Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Hits An All Time High — Videos — Story 3: Free U.S.-Led Uncensored Internet and Authoritarian Chinese-Led Censored Internet — Breaking Up Is Hard To Do — Videos — Story 4: American People’s Right To Privacy — National Privacy Law? — Videos

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1144, September 20, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1143, September 19, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1142, September 18, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1141, September 17, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1140, September 14, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1139, September 13, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1138, September 12, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1137, September 7, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1136, September 6, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1135, September 5, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1134, September 4, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1133, August 29, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1132, August 28, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1131, August 27, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1130, August 22, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1129, August 21, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1128, August 20, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1127, August 17, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1126, August 16, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1125, August 15, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1124, August 14, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1123, August 13, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1122, August 9, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1121, August 8, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1120, August 6, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1119, August 2, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1118, August 1, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1117, July 31, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1116, July 30, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1115, July 26, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1114, July 25, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1113, July 24, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1112, July 23, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1111, July 19, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1110, July 18, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1109, July 17, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1108, July 16, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1107, July 12, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1106, July 11, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1105, July 10, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1104, July 9, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1103, July 5, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1102, JUly 3, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1101, July 2, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1100, June 28, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1099, June 26, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1098, June 25, 2018 

Pronk Pops Show 1097, June 21, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1096, June 20, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1095, June 19, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1094, June 18, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1093, June 14, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1092, June 13, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1091, June 12, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1090, June 11, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1089, June 7, 2018

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Story 1: President Trump Rocks at Make America Great Again Rally in Las Vegas Nevada —  Build The Wall With $25 Billion in Funding and Balance The Budget — We Need More Republicans — Videos —

President Trump EXPLOSIVE Speech at MASSIVE Rally in Las Vegas, Nevada – September 20, 2018

Watch Live! Trump Rally in Las Vegas, NV!

Trump pushes for border wall funding during rally in Las Vegas

Trump goes one-on-one with Hannity at Las Vegas rally

‘He’s been there’: Trump stumps for vulnerable Sen. Heller

His own political fortunes intrinsically linked to his party holding control of Congress, President Donald Trump on Thursday offered full-throated support for the most vulnerable incumbent Republican senator, while unleashing a torrent of grievances against Democrats and the news media and claiming they are sabotaging his administration.

Trump, appearing at a boisterous rally in Las Vegas, defended his embattled Supreme Court justice nominee, touted the booming stock market, cited progress in talks with North Korea and pledged to build his long-promised border wall, while also making the pitch for Nevada to re-elect Sen. Dean Heller. The president noted that he and Heller – who once said he “vehemently” opposed Trump – did not always get along.

“We started out, we weren’t friends. I didn’t like him, he didn’t like me!” said Trump to laughs. “But as we fought and fought and fought, believe it or not we started to respect each other, than we started to like each other, then we started to love each other.

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

“Ever since I won the election, he’s been there for us,” said Trump, who urged Heller’s re-election because the Republican majority in the Senate is so slim, 51-49, that the GOP would lose its advantage if “someone had a cold.” The president also bestowed one of his signature nicknames on Heller’s opponent, Democratic Rep. Jacky Rosen, dubbing her “Wacky Jacky.”

Heller returned the praise: “Mr. President, I think you just turned Nevada red today,” he said. Trump narrowly lost Nevada to Hillary Clinton in 2016 despite his deep ties to Las Vegas – he has a golden-hued hotel just off the famed Strip – and repeatedly campaigning in the state.

Trump in particular focused his pitch for Heller on the need to confirm more conservative judges, in particular his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, whose seat on the bench had been thrown into question by allegations that he sexually assaulted a young woman while in high school more than 30 years ago.

Kavanaugh has denied the allegations.

While negotiations continued over whether his accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, would testify next week, Trump, who has taken pains not to criticize Ford in recent days, appeared to break from that strategy in a pre-rally interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity on the convention center floor.

“I think it’s a very sad situation,” said Trump, asking: “Why didn’t somebody call the FBI 36 years ago? … What’s going on?” While he said Ford should “have her say,” he made clear he was done waiting: “I don’t think you can delay it any longer. They’ve delayed it a week already.”

Trump remained on message at the rally. He did not utter a critical word about Ford, but defended Kavanaugh, saying he was “a great intellect” and “a great gentleman with an impeccable reputation.”

“We have to let it play out but I have to tell you, he is a fine, fine person,” Trump said of the Senate confirmation process. “I think everything is going to be just fine.”

There was one local topic Trump avoided. The Las Vegas rally was held three miles from the Mandalay Bay hotel where a gunman opened fire just over a year ago, killing 58 people and leaving 851 injured.

Trump made no mention of the shooting, though he assured Heller would vote in favor of the Second Amendment.

The rest of the rally was red meat for the crowd, which repeatedly roared its approval for the president but did not quite fill the room at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

As usual, Trump went after the media and many who attended the rally followed his lead. One man stood behind the president’s traveling press corps, repeatedly yelling the word “traitors” at the journalists.

At one point reading from a list of his administration’s accomplishments, Trump spent much of the rally focused on what advisers believe is his – and his party’s – best issue, the strong economy. He took credit for the stock market’s gains and the nation’s low unemployment rate and bragged about boosting the military, while accusing Democrats of doing their best to foster division and stall the growth.

“They are lousy politicians and their policies are terrible,” said Trump, in only his second rally as president in a state he lost two years ago, “but they are good at sticking together and resisting, that’s what they do. You see the signs ‘Resist, Resist.'”

With the chances of Republicans keeping control of the House of Representatives looking increasingly dismal, the White House has fixated on keeping the Senate as a bulwark against any Democratic effort to impeach and then remove Trump from office. Though the Senate midterm map favors Republicans, a few states, including Tennessee and perhaps Texas, could slip away from the GOP.

But no Republican-held seat is considered more endangered than the one in Nevada. The only Republican running for re-election in a state Hillary Clinton carried in 2016, Heller has been locked in a tight race in an increasingly blue-leaning state.

Though he fervently tried to wrap his arms around the president Thursday, Heller’s relationship with Trump has been tumultuous. Weeks before the 2016 election, Heller infamously said that he was “100 percent against Clinton, 99 percent against Trump,” a remark the president has not forgotten.

Heller drew the president’s ire a year ago when he held up Republican efforts to repeal former President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. But Trump saved Heller from a costly and damaging primary battle earlier this year by persuading a very conservative primary challenger, Danny Tarkanian, to drop out of the Senate race and instead seek a House seat.

Heller is now in a close race with Rosen, a first-term congresswoman who stands to benefit from a wave of Democratic and female activism fueled by opposition to Trump. And the senator, at times, has struggled to strike a balancing act of praising the president, who remains popular among Republicans, while distancing himself from Trump’s scandals and provocative positions.

“Eighty percent of what this president has done has been very, very good, very positive,” Heller told reporters last week. “The other 20 percent … he has a reality show. I get it. It’s a reality show.”

___

Associated Press writer Michelle Price contributed to this report. Colvin reported from Washington.

___

This story has been corrected to show the Senate is divided 51-49, not 50-49.

President Donald Trump gives a thumbs-up as he arrives at McCarran International Airport for a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump takes the stage during a campaign rally Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

President Donald Trump meets with supporters during a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

President Donald Trump meets with supporters during a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump waves as he arrives for a campaign rally, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Story 2: Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Hits An All Time High — Videos —

See the source image

Markets soar to new records under Trump

Nightly Business Report – September 20, 2018

Dow Jones And S&P Rally For New Record Highs

What Do “Points” On The Dow And S&P 500 Actually Mean?

Dow, S&P 500 close at record highs as bull shrugs off trade worries

Story 3: Free U.S.-Led Uncensored Internet and Authoritarian Chinese-Led Censored Internet — Breaking Up Is Hard To Do — Videos

Report: Google working on a censored search engine for China

Google employees revolt against China project

Could the Internet Split in Two?

Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt Predicts Internet Split: American vs. Chinese

Breakin’ Up Is Hard To Do – Neil Sedaka

 

Former Google CEO predicts the internet will split in two  — and one part will be led by China

  • Speaking at a private event hosted by Village Global VC yesterday night, tech luminary and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt predicted that the internet will bifurcate into Chinese-led and US-led versions within the next decade.
  • Under Sundar Pichai’s leadership, Google has explored the potential to launch a censored version of its search engine in China, stirring up controversy internally and outside the company.

Eric Schmidt, who has been the CEO of Google and executive chairman of its parent company, Alphabet, predicts that within the next decade there will be two distinct internets: one led by the U.S. and the other by China.

Schmidt shared his thoughts at a private event in San Francisco on Wednesday night convened by investment firm Village Global VC. The firm enlists tech luminaries — including Schmidt, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Diane Green — as limited partners, then invests their money into early-stage tech ventures.

At the event, economist Tyler Cowen asked about the possibility of the internet fragmenting into different sub-internets with different regulations and limited access between them in coming years. “What’s the chance, say, 10 to 15 years, we have just three to four separate internets?”

Schmidt said:

“I think the most likely scenario now is not a splintering, but rather a bifurcation into a Chinese-led internet and a non-Chinese internet led by America.

If you look at China, and I was just there, the scale of the companies that are being built, the services being built, the wealth that is being created is phenomenal. Chinese Internet is a greater percentage of the GDP of China, which is a big number, than the same percentage of the US, which is also a big number.

If you think of China as like ‘Oh yeah, they’re good with the Internet,’ you’re missing the point. Globalization means that they get to play too. I think you’re going to see fantastic leadership in products and services from China. There’s a real danger that along with those products and services comes a different leadership regime from government, with censorship, controls, etc.

Look at the way BRI works – their Belt and Road Initiative, which involves 60-ish countries – it’s perfectly possible those countries will begin to take on the infrastructure that China has with some loss of freedom.”

The Belt and Road is a massive initiative by Beijing to increase China’s political and economic influence by connecting and facilitating all kinds of trade, including digital trade, between China and countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Schmidt’s predictions come at a time when his successor at Google, CEO Sundar Pichai, has stirred up controversy around the company’s strategy in China.

Reportedly, Google has been developing “Project Dragonfly,” a censored version of its search engine that could appease authorities in China. The project allegedly included a means to suppress some search results, booting them off the first page, and a means to fully block results for sensitive queries, for example, around “peaceful protests.”

n recent weeks, hundreds of Google employees lobbied Pichai for more transparency and signed a letter saying that the reported plans raised “urgent moral and ethical issues.”

Pichai has said that Google has been “very open about our desire to do more in China,” and that the team “has been in an exploration stage for quite a while now,” and considering “many options,” but is nowhere near launching in China.

In a separate discussion last night between Schmidt and several start-up founders, he lauded Chinese tech products, services and adoption, especially in mobile payments. He noted that Starbucks in China don’t feature a register. Customers order ahead online and pay with their phones before picking up their lattes.

Former Google CEO claims internet will split between U.S. & China  

Eric Schmidt, who has been the CEO of Google and executive chairman of its parent company, Alphabet, predicts that within the next decade there will be two distinct internets: one led by the U.S. and the other by China.

Schmidt shared his thoughts at a private event in San Francisco on Wednesday night convened by investment firm Village Global VC. The firm enlists tech luminaries — including Schmidt, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Diane Green — as limited partners, then invests their money into early-stage tech ventures.

At the event, economist Tyler Cowen asked about the possibility of the internet fragmenting into different sub-internets with different regulations and limited access between them in coming years. “What’s the chance, say, 10 to 15 years, we have just three to four separate internets?”

Schmidt said:

“I think the most likely scenario now is not a splintering, but rather a bifurcation into a Chinese-led internet and a non-Chinese internet led by America.

If you look at China, and I was just there, the scale of the companies that are being built, the services being built, the wealth that is being created is phenomenal. Chinese Internet is a greater percentage of the GDP of China, which is a big number, than the same percentage of the US, which is also a big number.

If you think of China as like ‘Oh yeah, they’re good with the Internet,’ you’re missing the point. Globalization means that they get to play too. I think you’re going to see fantastic leadership in products and services from China. There’s a real danger that along with those products and services comes a different leadership regime from government, with censorship, controls, etc.

Look at the way BRI works – their Belt and Road Initiative, which involves 60-ish countries – it’s perfectly possible those countries will begin to take on the infrastructure that China has with some loss of freedom.”

The Belt and Road is a massive initiative by Beijing to increase China’s political and economic influence by connecting and facilitating all kinds of trade, including digital trade, between China and countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Schmidt’s predictions come at a time when his successor at Google, CEO Sundar Pichai, has stirred up controversy around the company’s strategy in China.

Reportedly, Google has been developing “Project Dragonfly,” a censored version of its search engine that could appease authorities in China. The project allegedly included a means to suppress some search results, booting them off the first page, and a means to fully block results for sensitive queries, for example, around “peaceful protests.”

What's next for Schmidt?

What’s next for Google’s Eric Schmidt? Sree Sreenivasan weighs in  

In recent weeks, hundreds of Google employees lobbied Pichai for more transparency and signed a letter saying that the reported plans raised “urgent moral and ethical issues.”

Pichai has said that Google has been “very open about our desire to do more in China,” and that the team “has been in an exploration stage for quite a while now,” and considering “many options,” but is nowhere near launching in China.

In a separate discussion last night between Schmidt and several start-up founders, he lauded Chinese tech products, services and adoption, especially in mobile payments. He noted that Starbucks in China don’t feature a register. Customers order ahead online and pay with their phones before picking up their lattes.

A business development leader with Facebook, Ime Archebong, asked Schmidt if large tech companies are doing enough good in the world.

Schmidt replied: “The judge of this is others, not us. Self-referential conversations about ‘Do I feel good about what I’m doing?’ are not very helpful. The judge is outside.”

At several points in the private discussion, Schmidt urged entrepreneurs to build products and services that are not merely addictive, but valuable. He also said not enough companies “measure the right things.” Too many focus on short-term revenue growth and satisfying shareholders, rather than what’s best for their users, society and the long-term health of their companies.

Schmidt was the CEO of Google from 2001, when he took over from co-founder Larry Page, through 2011, when Page reclaimed the reins. He remained as executive chairman of Google and then Alphabet until earlier this year.

Correction: Eric Schmidt did not specify a date by which he believed the internet would bifurcate. He was responding to a question from Tyler Cowen which specified “in the next 10 to 15 years.”

GOOGLE BOSSES HAVE forced employees to delete a confidential memo circulating inside the company that revealed explosive details about a plan to launch a censored search engine in China, The Intercept has learned.

The memo, authored by a Google engineer who was asked to work on the project, disclosed that the search system, codenamed Dragonfly, would require users to log in to perform searches, track their location — and share the resulting history with a Chinese partner who would have “unilateral access” to the data.

The memo was shared earlier this month among a group of Google employees who have been organizing internal protests over the censored search system, which has been designed to remove content that China’s authoritarian Communist Party regime views as sensitive, such as information about democracy, human rights, and peaceful protest.

According to three sources familiar with the incident, Google leadership discovered the memo and were furious that secret details about the China censorship were being passed between employees who were not supposed to have any knowledge about it. Subsequently, Google human resources personnel emailed employees who were believed to have accessed or saved copies of the memo and ordered them to immediately delete it from their computers. Emails demanding deletion of the memo contained “pixel trackers” that notified human resource managers when their messages had been read, recipients determined.

The Dragonfly memo reveals that a prototype of the censored search engine was being developed as an app for both Android and iOS devices, and would force users to sign in so they could use the service. The memo confirms, as The Intercept first reported last week, that users’ searches would be associated with their personal phone number. The memo adds that Chinese users’ movements would also be stored, along with the IP address of their device and links they clicked on. It accuses developers working on the project of creating “spying tools” for the Chinese government to monitor its citizens.

People’s search histories, location information, and other private data would be sent out of China to a database in Taiwan, the memo states. But the data would also be provided to employees of a Chinese company who would be granted “unilateral access” to the system.

To launch the censored search engine, Google set up a “joint venture” partnership with an unnamed Chinese company. The search engine will “blacklist sensitive queries” so that “no results will be shown” at all when people enter certain words or phrases, according to documents seen by The Intercept. Blacklisted search terms on a prototype of the search engine include “human rights,” “student protest,” and “Nobel Prize” in Mandarin, said sources familiar with the project.

According to the memo, aside from being able to access users’ search data, the Chinese partner company could add to the censorship blacklists: It would be able to “selectively edit search result pages … unilaterally, and with few controls seemingly in place.”

That a Chinese company would maintain a copy of users’ search data means that, by extension, the data would be accessible to Chinese authorities, who have broad powers to obtain information that is held or processed on the country’s mainland. A central concern human rights groups have expressed about Dragonfly is that it could place users at risk of Chinese government surveillance — and any person in China searching for blacklisted words or phrases could find themselves interrogated or detained. Chinese authorities are well-known for routinely targeting critics, activists, and journalists.

“It’s alarming to hear that such information will be stored and, potentially, easily shared with the Chinese authorities,” said Patrick Poon, a Hong Kong-based researcher with the human rights group Amnesty International. “It will completely put users’ privacy and safety at risk. Google needs to immediately explain if the app will involve such arrangements. It’s time to give the public full transparency of the project.”

ON AUGUST 16, two weeks after The Intercept revealed the Dragonfly plan, Google CEO Sundar Pichai told the company’s employees that the China plan was in its “early stages” and “exploratory.” However, employees working on the censored search engine were instructed in late July, days before the project was publicly exposed, that they should prepare to get it into a “launch-ready state” to roll out within weeks, pending approval from officials in Beijing.

“It will completely put users’ privacy and safety at risk.”

The memo raises new questions about Pichai’s claim that the project was not well-developed. Information stored on the company’s internal networks about Dragonfly “paints a very different picture,” it says. “The statement from our high-level leadership that Dragonfly is just an experiment seems wrong.”

The memo identifies at least 215 employees who appear to have been tasked with working full-time on Dragonfly, a number it says is “larger than many Google projects.” It says that source code associated with the project dates back to May 2017, and “many infrastructure parts predate” that. Moreover, screenshots of the app “show a project in a pretty advanced state,” the memo declares.

Most of the details about the project “have been secret from the start,” the memo says, adding that “after the existence of Dragonfly leaked, engineers working on the project were also quick to hide all of their code.”

The author of the memo said in the document that they were opposed to the China censorship. However, they added, “more than the project itself, I hate the culture of secrecy that has been built around it.”

The memo was first posted September 5 on an internal messaging list set up for Google employees to raise ethical concerns. But the memo was soon scrubbed from the list and individuals who had opened or saved the document were contacted by Google’s human resources department to discuss the matter. The employees were instructed not to share the memo.

Google reportedly maintains an aggressive security and investigation team known as “stopleaks,” which is dedicated to preventing unauthorized disclosures. The team is also said to monitor internal discussions.

“More than the project itself, I hate the culture of secrecy that has been built around it.”

Internal security efforts at Google have ramped up this year as employees have raised ethical concerns around a range of new company projects. Following the revelation by Gizmodoand The Intercept that Google had quietly begun work on a contract with the military last year, known as Project Maven, to develop automated image recognition systems for drone warfare, the communications team moved swiftly to monitor employee activity.

The “stopleaks” team, which coordinates with the internal Google communications department, even began monitoring an internal image board used to post messages based on internet memes, according to one former Google employee, for signs of employee sentiment around the Project Maven contract.

Google’s internal security team consists of a number of former military and law enforcement officials. For example, LinkedIn lists as Google’s head of global investigations Joseph Vincent, whose resume includes work as a high-ranking agent at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency’s Homeland Security Investigations unit. The head of security at Google is Chris Rackow, who has described himself as a former member of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s hostage rescue team and as a former U.S. Navy SEAL.

For some Google employees, the culture of secrecy at the company clashes directly with the its public image around fostering transparency, creating an intolerable work environment.

“Leadership misled engineers working on [Dragonfly] about the nature of their work, depriving them of moral agency,” said a Google employee who read the memo.

Google did not respond to a request for comment on this story.

https://theintercept.com/2018/09/21/google-suppresses-memo-revealing-plans-to-closely-track-search-users-in-china/

Story 4: American People’s Right To Privacy — National Privacy Law? — Videos

Facebook and Google Attempting to End California Privacy Laws

California lawmakers pass data privacy bill

California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff calls for national privacy law

Fight looms over national privacy law

Fight looms over national privacy law

The tech industry and consumer groups are gearing up for a fight as lawmakers begin considering whether to draft a national privacy law.

The push to get Congress to enact federal privacy standards is gaining new urgency after California passed what is seen as the nation’s toughest privacy law this June. The measure forces businesses to be more transparent about what they do with consumer data and gives users unprecedented control over their personal information.

But the California law has sparked worries within the tech industry, which fears having to comply with a patchwork of varying state regulations.

Now industry groups are pushing Congress to pass a national privacy bill that would block states from implementing their own standards.

Privacy advocates are skeptical of the industry proposals and concerned that internet giants will co-opt the process in order to get protections that are weaker than the California standard implemented across the country.

“They do not want effective oversight. They do not want regulation of their business practices, which is really urgently needed,” Jeff Chester, the executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy (CDD), told The Hill. “They’re going to work behind the scenes to shape legislation that will not protect Americans from having all of their information regularly gathered and used by these digital giants.”

“They see federal law as an opportunity to preempt stronger rules,” he added.

Next week, executives from Google, Apple, AT&T and other major technology and telecommunications companies will testify before the Senate Commerce Committee as the panel’s Republican chairman, Sen. John Thune (S.D.), prepares to introduce a new privacy law.

Consumer groups are concerned that only industry voices will be heard at the hearing and that internet companies will have an outsized role in shaping the legislation. They are now demanding a seat at the table.

On Wednesday, a coalition of public interest groups including the CDD, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Privacy Information Center sent a letter to Thune asking him to ensure that consumers have a voice in the process.

“While we have no objection to the participation of business groups in Senate hearings on consumer privacy, the Senate’s first instinct should be to hear from the American public on these important issues,” the letter reads.

Frederick Hill, a spokesman for the committee, told The Hill in an email that the panel will hold more hearings on the issue.

“For the first hearing, the committee is bringing in companies most consumers recognize to make the discussion about privacy more relatable,” Hill said. “We expect there will be opportunities for other voices at future hearings on the subject.”

A source familiar with the committee’s plans told The Hill that it could hold a hearing for privacy advocates to testify in the coming weeks.

The stakes are high for all sides in the privacy debate after a year which saw Facebook rocked by a massive data scandal.

The company disclosed earlier this year that a data firm had accessed the personal data of over 80 million Facebook users. The revelation sparked a firestorm that saw CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress in a pair of marathon hearings to address lawmakers’ concerns.

Overseas, Europe has already passed its own tough privacy law, which took effect this year.

Whether Congress can actually get behind a national privacy framework, though, is an open question. Lawmakers have tried before, unsuccessfully.

In 2012, the Obama White House unveiled a “Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights” that it hoped to enact into law. The debate dragged on for several years and the process was eventually derailed by contentious disagreements between business and consumer groups.

As Congress gears up to try again, industry groups in recent weeks have been pushing wish lists for what they hope to see in a federal privacy framework. Lobbying groups including the Chamber of Commerce, the Internet Association and BSA | The Software Alliance have all released their own sets of privacy principles.

The industry proposals include calls for codifying transparency rules that require businesses to disclose their collection practices and giving consumers the right to request copies of their data and request that some data be deleted.

Shaundra Watson, BSA’s policy director, said the group’s privacy principles were not a response to the new California law but the result of a discussion among their members, including companies like Apple and Microsoft, of how to codify the consumer protections they already offer.

“Our companies really are responsible for personal data, and so they not only want to continue to embrace those practices but look more broadly to see what protections should be in place across the board and concluded the best way to do that is a [federal] law,” Watson told The Hill.

But privacy advocates remain skeptical. After a series of data scandals, many tech critics believe that any effective privacy framework needs to restrict the data collection practices that companies like Facebook and Google rely on as a business model.

Chester, who says public interest groups are banding together to come up with their own legislative principles, believes the frameworks being pushed by industry lobbyists don’t go far enough.

“What has to happen is the basic business practices have to change,” he said. “We believe there need to be restrictions on how these companies engage in data collection.

“These so-called principles are really principles to undermine privacy, not to protect it,” he said.

https://thehill.com/policy/technology/407528-fight-looms-over-national-privacy-law

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The Pronk Pops Show 1140, September 14, 2018, Breaking News — Story 1: Hurricane Florence Downgraded To Category 1 and Now A Tropical Storm With Widespread Flooding From 11 Foot Storm Surge and Continuous Rainfall Expected From 1 to 4 Feet Lasting From 2 to 3 Days — Millions Without Electrical Power — Videos — Story 2: Lying Lunatic Left Blame Trump For Hurricanes Florence and Believe Climate Change Is Making Hurricanes Worse — Really — Weather Is Always Changing Over Hours and Days and Climate is Always Changing Over Billions of Years —  Trump Derangement Syndrome Goes Hysterical — Videos — Story 3: Federal Bureau of Investigation Engages In Criminal Activity in Leaking and Spying on Carter Page — The Dirty Cops and Corrupt Lawyers Are Going Down — Videos

Posted on September 14, 2018. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Breaking News, Business, Cartoons, Coal, Coal, Communications, Computers, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Elections, Energy, Freedom of Speech, Government Dependency, Government Spending, History, Human, Human Behavior, Law, Life, Lying, Media, Natural Gas, Natural Gas, News, Oil, Oil, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Presidential Appointments, Public Corruption, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Resources, Scandals, Security, Senator Jeff Sessions, Solar, Taxation, Taxes, United States of America, Videos, Wealth, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Breaking News — Story 1: Hurricane Florence Downgraded To Category 1 and Now A Tropical Storm With Widespread Flooding From Storm Surge and Continuous Rain — Millions Without Electrical Power — Videos —

 

Mom and baby are killed in ‘biblical’ Hurricane Florence as ‘thousand-year’ rain batters North Carolina and is forecast to dump 18 TRILLION gallons of water over the next seven days

  • Warning from North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper came after a day of 11-feet storm surges and flash floods
  • Florence made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, at 7.15 am – winds are now up to 80mph
  • Officials warned the storm will ‘get worse’ and 18 trillion gallons of rain is forecast over the next seven days
  • Storm is now tracking south-west at 6mph, lifting huge amounts of ocean moisture and dumping it on land
  • More than 60 people were rescued from a collapsing hotel in Jacksonville, North Carolina, early on Friday 
  • Rescue teams are working to free those trapped in New Bern after the nearby Neuse River burst its banks
  • The Neuse River near the city is recording more than 10 feet of inundation, the National Hurricane Center said
  • In Jacksonville, more than 60 people rescued from a hotel as building’s structural integrity was threatened
  • Even before Florence hit land, life-threatening storm surge was reported along the coast of the Carolinas
  • Once a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 mph, Florence was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday
  • A mother and her baby were killed after a tree fell on their family home in Wilmington, North Carolina

A mother and her baby have died as Hurricane Florence continues to batter North Carolina, with 18 trillion gallons of rain expected to fall in what one top official called a ‘thousand-year’ event.

The pair were trapped inside their home in Wilmington after a tree fell onto the roof at around 9.30am (ET). Firefighters frantically tried to lift the tree so they could escape, but were unable to do so.

The baby’s father was rescued and stretchered into an ambulance but police declared the mother and baby dead at 2.30pm (ET). National Guard were called into remove the shattered tree.

Florence is currently stalled over southeastern North Carolina, but is expected to drift further inland across the Carolinas on the weekend before turning toward the central Appalachian Mountains early next week.

The dire warnings were echoed by Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous, who told ABC News: ‘I see a biblical proportion flood event that’s going to occur. I see the beach communities being inundated with water and destruction that will be pretty, pretty epic in nature.’

The eye of the storm smashed into North Carolina just after 7am, with three inches of rain falling every hour and 80mph winds sparking an 11-foot storm surge.

Over seven days, 18 trillion gallons of rain is expected to fall across the Carolinas and Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky and Maryland. The wind speed has dropped slightly from 90mph when it made landfall to 75mph as of 2pm ET.

A mother and her baby died after being trapped inside their home in Wilmington when a tree fell onto the roof at around 9.30am (ET). Firefighters frantically tried to lift the tree (pictured) so they could escape, but were unable to do so

Fire firefighters use a boat to rescue three people from their flooded home during the Hurricane Florence in New Bern, North Carolina, on Friday 

Residents look at downed trees as Hurricane Florence passes over Wilmington, North Carolina, on Friday

Residents look at downed trees as Hurricane Florence passes over Wilmington, North Carolina, on Friday

Rescue workers rush a man to an ambulance after a giant tree toppled onto a house in Wilmington. The man was injured and taken to hospital 

 Members of the FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Task Force 4 from Oakland, California, and soldiers from the North Carolina National Guard 105th Military Police Battalion from Asheville search homes for evacuees on Friday 

Video playing bottom right…

Florence made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, at 7.15am. At least 26,000 people sought refuge in shelters in the state and 625,000 homes and businesses were reported to be without power.

More than 60 people including children had to be pulled from a collapsing motel in Jacksonville at the height of the storm, and many more who defied evacuation orders were waiting to be rescued.

The hurricane knocked a basketball-sized hole in the wall of the Triangle Motor causing cinder blocks to crumble and the roof to fall down – while residents were still in their rooms. Fire crews had to force their way in and evacuate the guests to a shelter. None were hurt.

Rescue teams were also working to free around 150 to 200 people trapped in homes in New Bern as city spokeswoman Colleen Roberts warned that the storm surge will increase further as Florence passes over the area.

Some 150 to 200 people have already been rescued after the nearby Neuse River rose by 10 feet high since bursting its banks on Thursday.

The city warned that people ‘may need to move up to the second story’ but told them to stay put as ‘we are coming to get you.’ Some 9,700 National Guard troops and civilians have been deployed, with high-water vehicles, helicopters and boats.

Florence’s rain will reach 40 inches in some parts of the Carolinas, forecasters said. Rainfall totals will be similar to those in hurricanes Dennis and Floyd in 1999, Chris Wamsley of the National Weather Service said Friday morning.

‘The only difference is, back then it was within 14 days,’ he said. With Florence, ‘we’re looking at the same amount of rainfall in three days.’

By midday Friday, airlines had canceled more than 2,100 U.S. flights from the storm’s approach on Wednesday through Sunday, according to tracking service FlightAware.

The region’s two largest airports, in Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, had more than 200 cancellations on Friday. That’s about half the flights in Raleigh and one in eight at Charlotte.

Rescue workers pray on the quiet residential street in Wilmington, North Carolina, where a mother and her baby died on Friday 

Before
After
A before and after image of a scene in New Bern on Thursday shows the violent impacts of the storm, which deluged the area with flood waters
Before flooding
After flooding
A before and after image of a scene in New Bern. Rescue teams were also working to free around 150 people trapped in homes in New Bern
Firefighters were unable to remove the tree from the house in Wilmington on Friday and had to call in the National Guard (pictured) 

Firefighters were unable to remove the tree from the house in Wilmington on Friday and had to call in the National Guard (pictured)

Volunteers from the Civilian Crisis Response Team help rescue three children from their flooded home in James City on Friday 

The volunteers moved the James City children to safety on Friday along a flooded highway. Hundreds of other people have had to call for emergency rescues in the area, officials said

Rescue workers pass the dog back to her owner after they were both rescued from their flooded James City property on Friday

Rescue workers from Township No. 7 Fire Department and volunteers from the Civilian Crisis Response Team use a boat to rescue a woman and her dog from their flooded home in James City on Friday

The members of Township No. 7 Fire Department and the civilian volunteers had a busy night on Thursday after the hurricane hit the area

Residents in this North Carolina town woke up on Friday morning to find a tree had fallen on the roof of a house. The storm is expected to cause $170 billion worth of damage, according to one prediction

A collapsed tree in North Carolina

Residents in this North Carolina town woke up on Friday morning to find a tree had fallen on the roof of a house. The storm is expected to cause $170 billion worth of damage, according to one prediction

The awning of a BP gas station in Top Sall, North Carolina, is blown off as Hurricane Florence makes landfall on Thursday night

Winds from Hurricane Florence are pounding Radio Island, NC

Even before Florence hit land, the National Hurricane Center in Miami reported ‘life-threatening storm surge and hurricane-force winds’ along the coast of the Carolinas leaving coastal streets inundated with ocean water.

Like an out of control freight train, Florence entered into Wilmington, a port city of 120,000 people on the North Carolina coast, and started pummeling the city.

The city was plunged into darkness after losing its power grid shortly after 5am during some of the fiercest wind bursts.

Damages are starting to appear as large swaths of the roof of Hotel Ballast, a downtown tourism staple, are being peeled off one by one and sucked out into the sky.

The Cape Fear River, which usually lazies from east to west through the city’s historic district, has been transformed into rapids.

As the day rose on Wilmington, residents discovered extensive damages. There are thousands of trees down in the city’s historic district. Most streets are unpassable as uprooted large oak trees lie across the road.

At this point, the entire city is without electricity as electric lines have been cut off by falling trees and ripped up gutters from homes litter the streets.

Trees bend in the heavy winds as they are enveloped by surging waters after Hurricane Florence hit Swansboro in North Carolina on Friday

Trees bend in the heavy winds as they are enveloped by surging waters after Hurricane Florence hit Swansboro in North Carolina on Friday

People were urged to avoid going out in their vehicles in Swansboro in North Carolina (pictured on Friday) over fears they could be swept away 

A resident in New Bern, North Carolina, filmed the inside of their flooded home as Hurricane Florence made landfall

A resident in New Bern, North Carolina, filmed the inside of their flooded home as Hurricane Florence made landfall

Mitchell Floor, left, holds a flashlight as Comfort Suites general manager Beth Bratz, center, and employee Dee Branch go to make coffee as Hurricane Florence rages in Wilmington Friday. 620,000 homes and businesses were reported to be without power as the outer band of the storm approached

Mitchell Floor, left, holds a flashlight as Comfort Suites general manager Beth Bratz, center, and employee Dee Branch go to make coffee as Hurricane Florence rages in Wilmington Friday. 620,000 homes and businesses were reported to be without power as the outer band of the storm approached

John Van Pelt ⛈🚀🛰🌮@JVPStorm

Sad to see this damage in Morehead City. There’ll be much more to see when the sun comes up. We have you covered through the night on @WeatherNation

Footage from television stations and social media showed raging waters hitting piers and jettys and rushing across coastal roads in seaside communities, including Topsail Beach, north of Wilmington, where storm surge waters damaged beachfront homes

Forecasters say the combination of a life-threatening storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The hurricane could cause $170 billion of property damage, according to one prediction.

Forecasters say ‘catastrophic’ freshwater flooding is expected over parts of the Carolinas.

But that, combined with the storm’s slowing forward movement and heavy rains, had North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper warning of an impending disaster.

‘The worst of the storm is not yet here but these are early warnings of the days to come,’ he said. ‘Surviving this storm will be a test of endurance, teamwork, common sense and patience.’

Forecasters said conditions will deteriorate as the storm pushes ashore early Friday near the North Carolina-South Carolina line and makes its way slowly inland.

Its surge could cover all but a sliver of the Carolina coast under as much as 11 feet of ocean water, and days of downpours could unload more than 3 feet of rain, touching off severe flooding.

Once a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 mph (225 kph), the hurricane was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday night.

This graph shows wind speeds in mph at 9am (ET), from the eye of Hurricane Florence near the North Carolina coast to further inland

This graph shows wind speeds in mph at 9am (ET), from the eye of Hurricane Florence near the North Carolina coast to further inland

A map from the National Hurricane center shows the probable path of Hurricane Florence from Friday to Wednesday next week

A map from the National Hurricane center shows the probable path of Hurricane Florence from Friday to Wednesday next week

A map broadcast at 10am ET shows the expected progress of Hurricane Florence from Saturday to early on Monday morning

This National Weather Service map shows the probably wind speeds of the hurricane from Friday to 2am on Wednesday 

Wind-whipped waves lash the coast at Wilmington, North Carolina, on Friday. Nearly all residents had evacuated following warnings from officials

Florence's fiercest winds will linger around the coast for hours since the storm was moving forward at only 6 mph. Pictured: The hurricane arriving at Wilmington on Friday

Visibility is poor around the eye of the storm, as water and other debris are pulled up into the air by the wind, as seen in this image of Swansboro on Friday

Visibility is poor around the eye of the storm, as water and other debris are pulled up into the air by the wind, as seen in this image of Swansboro on Friday

Trees sway in the wind as Hurricane Florence moves through Wilmington on Friday, as captured in a video taken by local journalist Raphael Grand

Photos show the South Carolina National Guard readying for the storm. Once a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 mph (225 kph), the hurricane was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday night

Forecasters say 'catastrophic' freshwater flooding is expected over parts of the Carolinas. Disaster relief teams are seen above

Michael Nelson uses a boat made from a metal tub and fishing floats after the Neuse River burst its banks on Thursday

Michael Nelson uses a boat made from a metal tub and fishing floats after the Neuse River burst its banks on Thursday

Rescuers head out into floodwaters in New Bern, North Carolina on Thursday night as the area starts to feel the full wrath of the storm

Camp Lejeune Naval Hospital in Jacksonville has a full hallway dedicated for animals of the staff working during Hurricane Florence. It is pictured on Friday

Animals on the hallway of Camp Lejeune Naval Hospital

Flamingos are evacuated as a part of Storm Florence preparations at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in South Carolina

Dolphins were spotted swimming close to the shore in Wilmington

A dolphin is seen in the murky waters

Dolphins were spotted swimming close to the shore in Wilmington, North Carolina, during the storm on Friday

CBS News

@CBSNews