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The Pronk Pops Show 1248, May 1, 2019, Story 1: Desperate Delusional Democrats of Lying Lunatic Left Losers Finally Realize Attorney General Barr Is Going After The Clinton Obama Democratic Criminal Conspirators — Videos — Story 2: Attorney General Barr Will Not Testify Before House Judiciary Committee on May 2, 2019 — Videos — Story 3: Fired Former FBI Director Comey Is One of The Conspirators in The Clinton Obama Democratic Criminal Conspiracy Getting Nervous — New York Times Editorial — Videos

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Story 1: Desperate Delusional Democrats of Lying Lunatic Left Losers Finally Realize Attorney General Barr Is Going After The Clinton Obama Democratic Criminal Conspirators — Videos

Sen. Graham presents full Mueller report at Senate hearing

Graham Questions Attorney General Barr at Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing

WATCH: Barr says Mueller did not suggest he had ‘misrepresented’ the special counsel’s report

Lindsey Graham’s real focus in Barr’s hearing: Hillary Clinton

Cruz rips Senate Democrats’ ‘weak argument’ at Barr hearing

WATCH: Barr says DOJ couldn’t show Trump’s instructions to McGahn were corrupt

Barr hearing gets heated: ‘You just slandered this man!’

Watch: Attorney General William Barr testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee

Complete exchange between Sen. Kamala Harris and Attorney General William Barr (C-SPAN)

WATCH: Normalizing Trump campaign’s behavior erodes American democracy, Booker says

AG Barr faces Senate in contentious Mueller report hearing

Lou Dobbs Tonight 4/30/19 [FULL| Lou Dobbs Breaking Fox News Today April 30, 2019

PBS NewsHour live show May 1, 2019

Barr will make members of Congress look unprepared: Lewandowski

 

Barr defends clearing Trump on obstruction, chides ‘snitty’ Mueller letter

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday fended off Democratic criticism of his decision to clear U.S. President Donald Trump of criminal obstruction of justice in the Russia inquiry and faulted Special Counsel Robert Mueller for not reaching a conclusion of his own on the issue.

In his first congressional testimony since releasing a redacted version of the report on April 18, Barr also dismissed Mueller’s complaints that he initially disclosed the special counsel’s conclusions on March 24 in an incomplete way that caused public confusion about critical aspects of the inquiry.

Illustrating tensions between the two men, Barr referred to as “a bit snitty” a March 27 letter from Mueller in which the special counsel urged him to release broader summaries of the findings to provide a fuller account – a step Barr rejected. Trump seized on Barr’s March 24 letter to declare that he had been fully exonerated.

Barr, the top U.S. law enforcement official and a Trump appointee, tangled with Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee during roughly four hours of testimony at a sometimes testy hearing, with several Democrats calling for his resignation after the attorney general stoutly defended Trump.

“I don’t think the government had a prosecutable case,” said Barr, the first Trump administration official to testify about the contents of Mueller’s report.

The report detailed extensive contacts between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Moscow and the campaign’s expectation that it would benefit from Russia’s actions, which included hacking and propaganda to boost Trump and harm Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. The report also detailed a series of actions Trump took to try to impede the investigation.

Mueller, a former FBI director, concluded there was insufficient evidence to show a criminal conspiracy. Mueller opted not to make a conclusion on whether Trump committed obstruction of justice, but pointedly did not exonerate him. Barr has said he and Rod Rosenstein, the Justice Department’s No. 2 official, then determined based on Mueller’s findings there was insufficient evidence to establish that Trump committed criminal obstruction.

 

Barr often appeared to excuse or rationalize Trump’s conduct, asserting that the president’s motives fell short of trying to derail Mueller’s investigation.

“You’ve chosen to be the president’s lawyer and side with him over the interests of the American people,” Democratic Senator Mazie Hirono told Barr, calling him a person who has sacrificed a “once-decent reputation for the grifter and liar that sits in the Oval Office.”

Senator Lindsey Graham, the committee’s Republican chairman, rushed to Barr’s defense, telling Hirono, “You’ve slandered this man.”

Trump has been unfairly smeared, Barr said, by suspicions he had collaborated with Russia in the election. “Two years of his administration have been dominated by the allegations that have now been proven false. To listen to some of the rhetoric, you would think that the Mueller report had found the opposite,” Barr said.

Barr was critical of Mueller for not reaching a conclusion himself on whether Trump obstructed the probe.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr returns to a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing entitled “The Justice Department’s Investigation of Russian Interference with the 2016 Presidential Election.” on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein

“I think that if he felt that he shouldn’t go down the path of making a traditional prosecutorial decision, then he shouldn’t have investigated,” Barr said.

Barr was asked about the report’s finding that in June 2017 Trump directed White House counsel Don McGahn to tell Rosenstein that Mueller had conflicts of interest and must be removed. McGahn did not carry out the order. Rosenstein had appointed Mueller the prior month.

Barr, appointed by Trump after the president fired his predecessor Jeff Sessions, seemed to minimize the incident and said Trump believed “he never outright directed the firing of Mueller.”

“We did not think in this case that the government could show corrupt intent,” Barr said.

Barr told Senator Dianne Feinstein, the committee’s top Democrat, “There is a distinction between saying to someone, ‘Go fire him, go fire Mueller,’ and saying, ‘Have him removed based on conflict.’ … The difference between them is if you remove someone for a conflict of interest, then there would be – presumably – another person appointed.”

Feinstein, sounding unconvinced, responded, “Wouldn’t you have to have in this situation an identifiable conflict that makes sense, or else doesn’t it just become a fabrication?”

‘INTENTION WAS VERY CLEAR’

Democratic Senator Dick Durbin was more blunt.

“I think the president’s intention was very clear. He wanted this to end,” Durbin said, referring to Mueller’s investigation.

Under questioning by Democratic Senator Kamala Harris, Barr acknowledged he did not review the investigation’s underlying evidence before deciding to clear Trump of obstruction.

Barr disputed the view that Mueller was handing the baton to Congress for possible impeachment proceedings. “That would be very inappropriate,” Barr said. “That’s not what the Justice Department does.”

Democrats control the House of Representatives, which would start any such impeachment effort, while Trump’s fellow Republicans control the Senate, which would have to vote to remove the president.

Democrats asked Barr about Mueller’s March 27 letter complaining that Barr’s March 24 letter to lawmakers stating the inquiry’s main conclusions did not “fully capture the context, nature and substance of this Office’s work.” Barr testified Mueller was unhappy with the way the conclusions were being characterized in the media, not his account of the conclusions, though Mueller’s letter does not mention media coverage.

“The letter is a bit snitty,” Barr said, using a word meaning disagreeably ill-tempered, “and I think it was probably written by a member of his staff.”

Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy said Barr misled Congress when he testified in April he did not know whether Mueller was happy with his initial characterization of his findings.

Several Democrats demanded that Mueller testify before the committee, but Graham ruled that out.

Barr told the panel he believed Russia and other countries were still a threat to interfere in U.S. elections.

Committee Republicans did not focus on Trump’s conduct but rather on what they saw as the FBI’s improper surveillance during the 2016 race of Trump aides they suspected of being Russian agents, as well as on the Kremlin’s election meddling.

To that end, Barr defended his accusation in a previous congressional hearing this month that American intelligence agencies engaged in “spying” on Trump campaign figures. He said “spying” is “a good English word” without a pejorative meaning and that he would not back off his language, which echoed Trump’s complaints that the Justice Department had engaged in wrongdoing toward his campaign.

Barr indicated that to him, the matter was closed.

“The report is now in the hands of the American people,” he said. “We’re out of it. We have to stop using the criminal justice system as a political weapon.”

The Democratic-led House Judiciary Committee voted to adopt an aggressive questioning format for a hearing set for Thursday with Barr, and a Democratic lawmaker said the panel would subpoena Barr if he does not appear. The committee’s subpoena deadline for Barr’s department to hand over an unredacted copy of Mueller’s report and the underlying evidence expired on Wednesday.

Reporting by Andy Sullivan, Sarah N. Lynch and David Morgan; Writing by Andy Sullivan and James Oliphant; Editing by Will Dunham

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-barr/barr-defends-clearing-trump-on-obstruction-chides-snitty-mueller-letter-idUSKCN1S73HF

 

 

Mueller complained that Barr’s letter did not capture ‘context’ of Trump probe

By Devlin Barrett and

Matt Zapotosky

April 30 at 8:21 PM

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III wrote a letter in late March complaining to Attorney General William P. Barr that a four-page memo to Congress describing the principal conclusions of the investigation into President Trump “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of Mueller’s work, according to a copy of the letter reviewed Tuesday by The Washington Post.

READ THE DOCUMENT

Full PDF

The letter and a subsequent phone call between the two men reveal the degree to which the longtime colleagues and friends disagreed as they handled the legally and politically fraught task of investigating the president. Democrats in Congress are likely to scrutinize Mueller’s complaints to Barr as they contemplate the prospect of opening impeachment proceedings and mull how hard to press for Mueller himself to testify publicly.

At the time Mueller’s letter was sent to Barr on March 27, Barr had days prior announced that Mueller did not find a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russian officials seeking to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. In his memo to Congress, Barr also said that Mueller had not reached a conclusion about whether Trump had tried to obstruct justice, but that Barr reviewed the evidence and found it insufficient to support such a charge.

Days after Barr’s announcement, Mueller wrote the previously undisclosed private letter to the Justice Department, laying out his concerns in stark terms that shocked senior Justice Department officials, according to people familiar with the discussions.

[Justice Dept., House Democrats at impasse over Barr hearing]

“The summary letter the Department sent to Congress and released to the public late in the afternoon of March 24 did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this office’s work and conclusions,” Mueller wrote. “There is now public confusion about critical aspects of the results of our investigation. This threatens to undermine a central purpose for which the Department appointed the Special Counsel: to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations.”

The letter made a key request: that Barr release the 448-page report’s introductions and executive summaries, and it made initial suggested redactions for doing so, according to Justice Department officials. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive internal deliberations.

A spokesman for Mueller declined to comment.

[The Mueller report, annotated]

Justice Department officials said Tuesday that they were taken aback by the tone of Mueller’s letter and that it came as a surprise to them that he had such concerns. Until they received the letter, they believed Mueller was in agreement with them on the process of reviewing the report and redacting certain types of information, a process that took several weeks. Barr has testified to Congress previously that Mueller declined the opportunity to review his four-page memo to lawmakers that distilled the essence of the special counsel’s findings.

[Read: Attorney General Barr’s letter on the Mueller report’s principal conclusions]

In his letter to Barr, Mueller wrote that the redaction process “need not delay release of the enclosed materials. Release at this time would alleviate the misunderstandings that have arisen and would answer congressional and public questions about the nature and outcome of our investigation.”

Barr is scheduled to appear Wednesday morning before the Senate Judiciary Committee — a much-anticipated public confrontation between the nation’s top law enforcement official and Democratic lawmakers, where he is likely to be questioned at length about his interactions with Mueller.

A day after Mueller sent his letter to Barr, the two men spoke by phone for about 15 minutes, according to law enforcement officials.

In that call, Mueller said he was concerned that media coverage of the obstruction probe was misguided and creating public misunderstandings about the office’s work, according to Justice Department officials. Mueller did not express similar concerns about the public discussion of the investigation of Russia’s election interference, the officials said. Barr has testified previously that he did not know whether Mueller supported his conclusion on obstruction.

When Barr pressed Mueller on whether he thought Barr’s memo to Congress was inaccurate, Mueller said he did not but felt that the media coverage of it was misinterpreting the investigation, officials said.

In their call, Barr also took issue with Mueller calling his memo a “summary,” saying he had never intended to summarize the voluminous report, but instead provide an account of its top conclusions, officials said.

Justice Department officials said that, in some ways, the phone conversation was more cordial than the letter that preceded it, but that the two men did express some differences of opinion about how to proceed.

Barr said he did not want to put out pieces of the report, but rather issue the document all at once with redactions, and that he didn’t want to change course, according to officials.

In prepared written remarks for Wednesday’s hearing, Barr said he “did not believe that it was in the public interest to release additional portions of the report in piecemeal fashion, leading to public debate over incomplete information.”

Barr also gave Mueller his personal phone number and told him to call if he had future concerns, officials said.

Throughout the conversation, Mueller’s main worry was that the public was not getting an accurate understanding of the obstruction investigation, officials said.

“After the Attorney General received Special Counsel Mueller’s letter, he called him to discuss it,” a Justice Department spokeswoman said Tuesday evening in a statement. “In a cordial and professional conversation, the Special Counsel emphasized that nothing in the Attorney General’s March 24 letter was inaccurate or misleading. But, he expressed frustration over the lack of context and the resulting media coverage regarding the Special Counsel’s obstruction analysis. They then discussed whether additional context from the report would be helpful and could be quickly released.

“However, the Attorney General ultimately determined that it would not be productive to release the report in piecemeal fashion,” the spokeswoman said. “The Attorney General and the Special Counsel agreed to get the full report out with necessary redactions as expeditiously as possible. The next day, the Attorney General sent a letter to Congress reiterating that his March 24 letter was not intended to be a summary of the report, but instead only stated the Special Counsel’s principal conclusions, and volunteered to testify before both Senate and House Judiciary Committees on May 1 and 2.”

Some senior Justice Department officials were frustrated by Mueller’s complaints because they had expected that the report would reach them with proposed redactions, but it did not. Even when Mueller sent along his suggested redactions, those covered only a few areas of protected information, and the documents required further review, these people said.

The Washington Post and the New York Times had previously reported some members of Mueller’s team were frustrated with Barr’s characterization of their work, though Mueller’s own attitude was unknown before now.

In some team members’ view, the evidence they had gathered — especially on obstruction — was far more alarming and significant than how Barr had described it. That was perhaps to be expected, given that Barr had distilled a 448-page report into a terse, four-page memo to Congress.

Wednesday’s hearing will be the first time lawmakers question Barr since the Mueller report was released on April 18, and he is expected to face a raft of tough questions from Democrats.

[Attorney general says he believes ‘spying did occur’ in probe of Trump campaign associates]

Republicans on the committee are expected to question Barr about an assertion he made earlier in April that government officials had engaged in “spying” on the Trump campaign — a comment that was seized on by the president’s supporters as evidence the investigation into the president was biased.

Barr is also scheduled to testify Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee, but that hearing could be canceled or postponed amid a dispute about whether committee staff lawyers will question the attorney general. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), the panel’s chairman, called for a copy of the Mueller letter to be delivered to his committee by Wednesday morning.

Democrats have accused Barr of downplaying the seriousness of the evidence against the president. Mueller’s report described 10 significant episodes of possible obstruction of justice but said that because of long-standing Justice Department policy that says a sitting president cannot be indicted and because of Justice Department practice regarding fairness toward those under investigation, his team did not reach a conclusion about whether the president had committed a crime.

Devlin BarrettDevlin Barrett writes about national security and law enforcement for The Washington Post. He has previously worked at the Wall Street Journal, the Associated Press and the New York Post, where he started as a copy boy. Follow 

Matt ZapotoskyMatt Zapotosky covers the Justice Department for The Washington Post’s national security team. He has previously worked covering the federal courthouse in Alexandria and local law enforcement in Prince George’s County and Southern Maryland. Follow 

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/mueller-complained-that-barrs-letter-did-not-capture-context-of-trump-probe/2019/04/30/d3c8fdb6-6b7b-11e9-a66d-a82d3f3d96d5_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.862d2baf5043

Harris fundraises off Barr testimony: Americans ‘deserve truth and integrity’

Democratic presidential hopefuls Sens. Kamala Harris (Calif.) and Cory Booker (N.J.) sent out fundraising blasts Wednesday afternoon following their questioning of Attorney General William Barr on Capitol Hill.

Harris and Booker, who both sit on the Senate Judiciary Committee, joined other Democrats on the panel in pressing Barr about his handling of special counsel Robert Mueller‘s report about his investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

A former federal prosecutor, Harris made headlines Wednesday when Barr admitted in response to her questioning that he did not review Mueller’s underlying evidence before concluding that President Trump did not obstruct probes into Russia’s election meddling.

“Bill Barr is acting more like the President’s personal attorney than the Attorney General of the United States. His job is to defend the rule of law and serve the American people, not shield the President from justice. He made something very clear today: he must resign,” Harris wrote in her email to supporters.

“I’m running for president because the American people deserve truth and integrity from their elected leaders. That’s not what we’re getting right now. If you’re with me in this fight, I need you now,” she added.

“William Barr has shown with actions in his handling of the Mueller Report’s release and with words in his testimony to Congress today that he’s put his political loyalty to Donald Trump before his duty to our country,” Booker said in his email to supporters while also calling for Barr to resign.

The attorney general has emerged as a top target of Democratic presidential contenders after it was revealed Tuesday that Mueller expressed frustration to Barr about the attorney general’s four-page summary of the Russia probe sent to Congress in late March.

Mueller said in a letter to Barr that the summary of the special counsel probe “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this office’s work and conclusions.”

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/441677-harris-fundraises-off-barr-testimony-americans-deserve-truth-and-integrity

 

Story 2: Attorney General Barr Will Not Testify Before House Judiciary Committee on May 2, 2019 — Videos

CONGRESS

Barr won’t testify before House panel Thursday

The attorney general is boycotting the hearing amid a fight with Democrats over the ground rules for his testimony.

Updated 

The Justice Department issued a double-barreled rebuff to Democrats Wednesday, informing the House Judiciary Committee that Attorney General William Barr would not show up for his scheduled testimony before the panel and that the department would not comply with a subpoena for special counsel Robert Mueller’s full report.

“The administration has the nerve to dictate our procedures. It’s simply part of the administration’s complete stonewalling of Congress — period,” Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) told reporters.

“Given his lack of candor in describing the work of the special counsel, our members were right to insist that staff counsel be permitted to question the attorney general,” Nadler told reporters, referring to Barr’s Senate Judiciary Committee testimony earlier Wednesday.

“I understand why he wants to avoid that kind of scrutiny,” Nadler added. “He is terrified of having to face a skilled attorney.”

Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec countered that Nadler had established “unprecedented and unnecessary“ conditions on the hearing, adding, “Congress and the executive branch are co-equal branches of government, and each have a constitutional obligation to respect and accommodate one another’s legitimate interests.”

The moves by the Justice Department are sure to intensify the ongoing war between the Trump administration and Capitol Hill over House Democrats’ various investigations and oversight demands.

Nadler said he would seek to hold Barr in contempt of Congress if the department doesn’t turn over the unredacted Mueller report and all of the underlying evidence “in the next day or two.” The chairman also said he could issue a subpoena to compel Barr’s attendance at a future hearing.

The committee had teed up the clash earlier Wednesday after a tense party-line vote on establishing the ground rules for Thursday’s hearing. Under the motion adopted by the committee, the attorneys for the Democratic and Republican sides of the panel would have had an hour, equally divided, to question Barr, who had threatened to back out of the hearing if that was the arrangement.

Democrats said that despite DOJ claims, there is ample precedent to use staff attorneys. Republicans, meanwhile, have jumped to Barr’s defense, asserting that it would be “disrespectful” to have anyone but lawmakers question the attorney general.

Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia, the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, accused Nadler of “torpedoing” the hearing over an unnecessary demand.

“By rejecting the chance to question Attorney General Barr or read the materials he’s provided, Democrats are trying to prolong an investigation the special counsel completed,” Collins said in a statement.

“What we have here is simply another opportunity to sidetrack and have a serial sideshow,” Collins said earlier Wednesday in opposing the Democrats’ ground rules for the hearing. “This has become nothing but theatre.”

Indeed, the committee’s meeting devolved into a shouting match at times, with Republicans haranguing Democrats with demands that it be adjourned.

Barr testified earlier Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee, just hours after it was revealed that Mueller expressed concerns to Barr that his four-page summary of the special counsel’s findings “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of the investigation.

In his March 27 letter to Barr, Mueller also said the attorney general sowed “public confusion” about the investigation, undermining public confidence in the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump.

“I think there are great difficulties with the attorney general at this point. He seems — besides the fact that he clearly misled the American people, he seems to have testified non-truthfully to the Senate and to the House, which raises major questions,” Nadler said Wednesday.

During his Senate testimony, Barr consistently challenged Mueller’s legal theories and appeared to undercut many aspects of the special counsel’s report, rankling Democrats who accused the attorney general of seeking to protect the president.

The revelation about Mueller’s letter prompted even more Democratic lawmakers to call for Barr’s resignation, including some Judiciary Committee members as well as House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.).

Nadler also said on Wednesday that the committee is eyeing May 15 as the date for Mueller himself to testify before the committee. Barr has said he does not oppose allowing Mueller to testify, but Nadler told reporters that the committee is still negotiating with the Justice Department.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/05/01/barr-testimony-house-democrats-1296377

Story 3: Fired Former FBI Director Comey Is One of The Conspirators in The Clinton Obama Democratic Criminal Conspracy Getting Nervious — Videos

James Comey: How Trump Co-opts Leaders Like Bill Barr

Accomplished people lacking inner strength can’t resist the compromises necessary to survive this president.

By James Comey

Mr. Comey is the former F.B.I. director.

CreditSarah Silbiger/The New York Times
Image
CreditCreditSarah Silbiger/The New York Times

People have been asking me hard questions. What happened to the leaders in the Trump administration, especially the attorney general, Bill Barr, who I have said was due the benefit of the doubt?

How could Mr. Barr, a bright and accomplished lawyer, start channeling the president in using words like “no collusion” and F.B.I. “spying”? And downplaying acts of obstruction of justice as products of the president’s being “frustrated and angry,” something he would never say to justify the thousands of crimes prosecuted every day that are the product of frustration and anger?

How could he write and say things about the report by Robert Mueller, the special counsel, that were apparently so misleading that they prompted written protest from the special counsel himself?

How could Mr. Barr go before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday and downplay President Trump’s attempt to fire Mr. Mueller before he completed his work?

 

And how could Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, after the release of Mr. Mueller’s report that detailed Mr. Trump’s determined efforts to obstruct justice, give a speech quoting the president on the importance of the rule of law? Or on resigning, thank a president who relentlessly attacked both him and the Department of Justice he led for “the courtesy and humor you often display in our personal conversations”?

What happened to these people?

I don’t know for sure. People are complicated, so the answer is most likely complicated. But I have some idea from four months of working close to Mr. Trump and many more months of watching him shape others.

Amoral leaders have a way of revealing the character of those around them. Sometimes what they reveal is inspiring. For example, James Mattis, the former secretary of defense, resigned over principle, a concept so alien to Mr. Trump that it took days for the president to realize what had happened, before he could start lying about the man.

But more often, proximity to an amoral leader reveals something depressing. I think that’s at least part of what we’ve seen with Bill Barr and Rod Rosenstein. Accomplished people lacking inner strength can’t resist the compromises necessary to survive Mr. Trump and that adds up to something they will never recover from. It takes character like Mr. Mattis’s to avoid the damage, because Mr. Trump eats your soul in small bites.

It starts with your sitting silent while he lies, both in public and private, making you complicit by your silence. In meetings with him, his assertions about what “everyone thinks” and what is “obviously true” wash over you, unchallenged, as they did at our private dinner on Jan. 27, 2017, because he’s the president and he rarely stops talking. As a result, Mr. Trump pulls all of those present into a silent circle of assent.

Speaking rapid-fire with no spot for others to jump into the conversation, Mr. Trump makes everyone a co-conspirator to his preferred set of facts, or delusions. I have felt it — this president building with his words a web of alternative reality and busily wrapping it around all of us in the room.

I must have agreed that he had the largest inauguration crowd in history because I didn’t challenge that. Everyone must agree that he has been treated very unfairly. The web building never stops.

From the private circle of assent, it moves to public displays of personal fealty at places like cabinet meetings. While the entire world is watching, you do what everyone else around the table does — you talk about how amazing the leader is and what an honor it is to be associated with him.

Sure, you notice that Mr. Mattis never actually praises the president, always speaking instead of the honor of representing the men and women of our military. But he’s a special case, right? Former Marine general and all. No way the rest of us could get away with that. So you praise, while the world watches, and the web gets tighter.

Next comes Mr. Trump attacking institutions and values you hold dear — things you have always said must be protected and which you criticized past leaders for not supporting strongly enough. Yet you are silent. Because, after all, what are you supposed to say? He’s the president of the United States.

You feel this happening. It bothers you, at least to some extent. But his outrageous conduct convinces you that you simply must stay, to preserve and protect the people and institutions and values you hold dear. Along with Republican members of Congress, you tell yourself you are too important for this nation to lose, especially now.

You can’t say this out loud — maybe not even to your family — but in a time of emergency, with the nation led by a deeply unethical person, this will be your contribution, your personal sacrifice for America. You are smarter than Donald Trump, and you are playing a long game for your country, so you can pull it off where lesser leaders have failed and gotten fired by tweet.

And then you are lost. He has eaten your soul.

James Comey is the former F.B.I. director and author of “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership.”

 

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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

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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

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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 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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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

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‘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 —

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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.”

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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 1143, September 19, 2918, Story 1: Unintended Consequences — Republican Voter Base and Republicans In Congress Will Unite Behind Confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh — Monday Monday — California Dreamin’ — Videos — Story 2. Senator Cruz Should Win Second Term — Build The Wall — Stop The 30-60 Million Illegal Alien Invasion of United States — Videos — Story 3: Chinese Communist Island Building in South China Sea Will Backfire and Unite Countries In The Region Against Them — From Japanese Imperialism to American Imperialism to Chinese Imperialism — Not Learning The Lessons of History — Oil and Natural Gas Is The Prize — Videos —

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Story 1: Unintended Consequences — Republican Voter Base and Republicans In Congress Will Unite Behind Confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh — Videos —

See the source image

The Mamas & The Papas – Monday Monday

Sekulow: No hearing needed if Kavanaugh accuser won’t appear

Dershowitz: Kavanaugh accuser needs to testify under oath

Hannity: Dems don’t want real investigation of Kavanaugh

Republicans warn that Ted Cruz could lose

Ted Cruz Does Not Denounce Killing Of Botham Jean, Says It May Have Been Misundersting

Beto O’Rourke CRUSHES Ted Cruz on Botham Jean Case

Democrats denounce Kavanaugh, Ford hearing date

Kavanaugh accuser’s lawyer issues ‘terms’ for testimony

Politics of Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation fight

10 Fascinating Examples of Unintended Consequences

The Mamas & The Papas: California Dreamin’

The drive to sink Kavanaugh is liberal totalitarianism

If Senate Democrats and their media allies manage to destroy Brett Kavanaugh, they will bring America one step closer to a new, liberal style of totalitarianism.

I don’t use the “T”-word lightly. I’ve spent years pushing back against those who fling it about in free societies like ours. But totalitarianism doesn’t require cartoonish, 1984-style secret police and Big Brother. The classical definition is a society where everything — ethical norms and moral principles and truth itself — is subjugated to political ends.

By that measure, the Democratic campaign to block Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, based on a hazy, uncorroborated, decades-old assault allegation, tends toward the totalitarian. Certainly, it has many of the elements of abusive politics that Americans normally associate with foreign lands untouched by the light of liberty and reason:

An (initially) anonymous accusation, surfaced at the 11th hour, seemingly calculated to strike terror into the hearts of Kavanaugh and his family members and supporters? Check! That came in the form of Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s cryptic statement last week, confirming that she had “received information from an individual concerning the nomination” of Kavanaugh but declining to offer any details.

An accusation that’s impossible to rebut? Check! Senate Democrats are demanding that the FBI look into the allegations first before the Judiciary Committee holds a hearing. But Kavanaugh’s accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, can’t remember the time or location of the alleged incident. An FBI probe is impracticable, not to mention improper given the lack of a federal crime.

Kavanaugh’s integrity is thus besmirched, and the path to the only forum where he could clear his name is obstructed.

A media mob that treats the mere existence of an accusation as proof of its veracity? Check! The examples of this are legion. My favorite came courtesy of the Atlantic writer who claimed that her own run-in with a pervert meant that Kavanaugh is also guilty. This, just a couple of years after Rolling Stone’s University of Virginia fiasco was supposed to have taught reporters a lesson about the importance of listening to the accused as well as the accusers.

It didn’t have to be this way.

Feinstein didn’t have to leak the anonymous accusation to the press, contrary to Ford’s wishes. Or she could have urged Ford to go public early, giving both parties enough time to be heard.

Even now, Feinstein and her colleagues could back a committee hearing, without which Kavan­augh has no realistic opportunity for mounting a defense. Kavan­augh is a judge and a political operator. But he ‘s also a father and husband.

But no. Senate Dems have settled on the ugliest means available, even by the standards of the body that added the verb “Borking” to our political vocabulary. The question is: Why have Republican high-court nominations brought out the worst from the left, going back to the Ronald Reagan era?

The short answer is that liberals fear their major cultural victories of the past half-century are democratically illegitimate. Not a single one was won at the ballot box, going back to the Supreme Court’s 1965 Griswold decision, which recognized a constitutional right to contraceptives. From abortion to gay marriage, plus a host of less titillating issues, modern liberalism has lived by the Court. And liberals fear their cause will die by the Court.

Unless, that is, they block conservative encroachments into the judiciary by all means necessary. Hence, Borking and Clarence Thomas-ing. And hence, too, the naked slandering of Mitt Romney in the course of the 2012 presidential campaign, to forestall his shifting the Court to the right.

I wish I could say that the way out of this impasse is for the right to double down on the gentle conservatism represented by Romney, the Bush dynasty, and the late John McCain. Perhaps that is the right course in the long term. But for now, it is imperative for the health of American democracy to resist the liberal ruthlessness that is on display in the halls of the Senate.

The verb “to Kavanaugh” must not be permitted to enter our lexicon, lest the step to unfreedom become irrevocable.

Sohrab Ahmari is senior writer at Commentary and author of the forthcoming memoir of Catholic conversion, “From Fire, By Water.”

https://nypost.com/2018/09/19/the-drive-to-sink-kavanaugh-is-liberal-totalitarianism/

 

Republicans Reject Kavanaugh Accuser’s Request To Delay Hearing For FBI Investigation

Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing Sept. 6.

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Updated at 11 p.m. ET

The Senate Judiciary Committee will move forward with a hearing scheduled for Monday on sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, despite a request for further investigation from his accuser.

The decision follows the release of a letter sent to Senate Judiciary Commitee Chairman Chuck Grassley from attorneys representing Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her more than three decades ago when they were teenagers. In the letter, Ford’s attorneys said an FBI investigation should be “the first step in addressing her allegations.”

Ford’s attorneys argue that an investigation is necessary so that “the Committee is fully informed before conducting any hearing or making any decisions.” Ford’s attorneys also say that since she went public with her allegations “she has been the target of vicious harassment and even death threats.” They also complained that the committee scheduled Ford to “testify at the same table as Judge Kavanaugh in front of two dozen U.S. Senators on national television to relive this traumatic and harrowing incident.”

Grassley declined Tuesday night to delay the hearing.

“The invitation for Monday still stands,” Grassley said in a statement. “Nothing the FBI or any other investigator does would have any bearing on what Dr. Ford tells the committee, so there is no reason for any further delay.”

Grassley’s decision echoed the sentiment of Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “The FBI does not do investigations like this. The responsibility falls to us,” Hatch tweeted, adding “We should proceed as planned.”

And retiring Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., suggested that if Ford did not appear at Monday’s hearing, Senate Republicans should proceed to move forward considering Kavanaugh’s nomination. ” If we don’t hear from both sides on Monday, let’s vote,” Corker posted on Twitter late Tuesday night.

The letter from Ford’s attorneys and Grassley’s response capped a day of uncertainty about the next step in the Kavanaugh confirmation process, which has spiraled into turmoil in recent days.

Ford’s attorneys stopped short of saying Ford will refuse to appear before the committee while objecting to the rushed timeline and comments from Republican senators who seemed to question her accusations.

“The hearing was scheduled for six short days from today and would include interrogation by Senators who appear to have made up their minds that she is ‘mistaken’ and ‘mixed up,’ ” the letter reads. “While no sexual assault survivor should be subjected to such an ordeal, Dr. Ford wants to cooperate with the Committee and with law enforcement officials.”

Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, issued statements supporting Ford’s concerns about the hearing.

“I strongly support Dr. Ford’s call for an FBI investigation before a hearing is held,” Schumer said. “Dr. Ford’s call for the FBI to investigate also demonstrates her confidence that when all the facts are examined by an impartial investigation, her account will be further corroborated and confirmed.”

California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, also weighed in to support Ford.

“We should honor Dr. Blasey Ford’s wishes and delay this hearing,” Feinstein said in a statment. “A proper investigation must be completed, witnesses interviewed, evidence reviewed and all sides spoken to. Only then should the chairman set a hearing date.”

Earlier in the day, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the Senate Judiciary Committee would offer Ford the opportunity to testify in either an open public session or behind closed doors about her allegation.

“She could do it privately if she prefers, or publicly if she prefers,” McConnell said, adding, “Monday is her opportunity.” He stressed that Kavanaugh is eager to provide his testimony.

Democratic aides have privately floated the possibility of boycotting the hearing if Republicans choose to proceed without Ford present.

Grassley’s committee staff has already begun conducting preliminary interviews by phone with alleged witnesses related to the incident that Ford described to the Washington Post as having happened in the early 1980s when she and Kavanaugh were teenagers living in the Washington, D.C., suburbs. Aides plan follow-up sessions as needed to obtain additional information ahead of Monday’s planned public hearing.

Ford named Mark Judge, a classmate of Kavanaugh’s, as a witness to the incident at the high school party, but Judge told the Weekly Standard earlier this week he doesn’t recall the episode.

Grassley’s office released a letter from Judge’s attorney on Tuesday with a statement from him saying he has “no memory” of the incident. He also says, “I have no more information to offer the Committee and I do not wish to speak publicly regarding the incidents described in Dr. Ford’s letter.”

Democrats have rejected the GOP process and are refusing to participate in any committee phone interviews. They are insisting that the hearing be delayed to further explore the allegations. They want additional witnesses beyond Kavanaugh and Ford to be added to the planned hearing Monday.

But their primary demand is one that Ford asked for her in her letter Tuesday night — that the FBI conduct a full evaluation before any hearing is held.

That’s a proposal President Trump himself rejected earlier Tuesday prior to the release of the letter from Ford’s attorneys.

“That’s not what they do,” Trump said. “They have done now, supposedly, six background checks as Judge Kavanaugh has gone beautifully up a ladder.”

On Monday a spokesperson for the Justice Department indicated that the FBI does not get involved in matters unless a federal crime is alleged and that it had completed its work related to Kavanaugh’s background check.

Speaking at a joint news conference with Polish President Andrzej Sebastian Duda, Trump said Tuesday he feels “so badly” that Kavanaugh is going through the ordeal of the accusations.

“I feel terribly for him, for his wife and for his beautiful young daughters,” Trump said. “I feel terribly for them.”

Washington state Sen. Patty Murray, the No. 3 Democrat in the Senate, told reporters that an FBI investigation is necessary to ensure a full and impartial assessment of the accusations.

“Scheduling a hearing for Monday, a week from when Dr. Ford made her accusations public, is a shameful attempt to jam this through without giving anyone the time they need to investigate and put together the questions that need to be asked,” Murray said. “This is a test for the United States Senate on how we handle accusations of sexual harassment and assault.”

Murray and other Democrats are drawing a direct parallel between the claims against Kavanaugh and those raised in 1991 when Anita Hill accused Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment during his confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court. At the time an all-male Senate Judiciary Committee aggressively questioned Hill in televised hearings, cast doubt on her accusations and ultimately voted to move Thomas’ nomination to the full Senate which confirmed him to the court.

That incident inspired a record number of women to run for federal office that cycle, including Murray, who was elected the following year. Murray told reporters America — and women in particular — will be closely watching how Ford’s case is handled.

“If Republicans attack Dr. Ford and this turns into anything like what we saw in 1991, women across the country are going to rise up and make their voice heard and Republicans will pay a very huge price,” Murray said. “I am here today to say, once again, women are watching, we are not going allow that to happen again.”

Before Ford asked for an FBI investigation, McConnell and other leaders said they wanted to hear directly from Ford but were standing firm on their expectation that she appear before the committee on Monday, blaming Democrats for creating a disorderly examination of Kavanaugh’s record.

“Next week Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh will testify to the Senate Judiciary Committee under oath,” McConnell said Tuesday. “We should not have gotten to this point. That this process has played out with so little order and so little sensitivity lies solely at the feet of Senate Democrats.”

Republicans have accused Feinstein of concealing details of Ford’s accusation for several months after it was sent to her office in July.

Feinstein referred the information to the FBI but did not discuss it until Ford went public over the weekend. She defended her decision to keep the letter private Tuesday, saying she was respecting Ford’s own request for anonymity and following procedure for working with federal investigators.

“What we were trying to do was get an investigation,” Feinstein said. “We were going through all of that process.”

Some Republicans are warning that the Judiciary Committee has to tread lightly and handle the accusations with respect, regardless of their timing. Retiring Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., told reporters that there is a risk in being too aggressive or appearing to bully Ford. McConnell and other top GOP leaders repeatedly stressed that Ford deserved to be heard and they hoped she would agree to testify.

Maine Sen. Susan Collins, who is one of just a handful of Republicans who have not said whether they plan to support Kavanaugh, proposed calling both Kavanaugh and Ford to testify and allowing their attorneys to question them both as witnesses. “I believe that would elicit the most information,” Collins said.

https://www.npr.org/2018/09/18/649209595/hearing-with-kavanaugh-and-accuser-alleging-sexual-assault-in-turmoil

 

Whip list: Where senators stand on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Kavanaugh meets with Pence and GOP leaders 01:40

Washington (CNN)Brett Kavanaugh is facing the confirmation of a lifetime. President Donald Trump announced in July that he is nominating the DC Appeals Court judge to the Supreme Court bench.

Whether Kavanaugh is successfully confirmed has become a question of Senate math. Republicans hold a slim 51-49 majority in the chamber.
And ahead of the midterms, all eyes are on the 10 Democrats running for re-election in states Trump carried in 2016. Three of them — North Dakota’s Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, Indiana’s Sen. Joe Donnelly and West Virginia’s Joe Manchin — voted for Trump’s last Supreme Court nominee, Justice Neil Gorsuch, last year and face re-election in 2018.
Democrats are also watching Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine, who have expressed concerns, among other issues, about any action to overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark abortion ruling.
For those who have already weighed in, here’s the latest look at what senators have said about Kavanaugh’s nomination and how they will vote:

What undecided red-state Democrats are saying

Bill Nelson of Florida on July 9 — “I look forward to meeting with the President’s nominee in the coming weeks to discuss his views on several important issues such as protecting women’s rights, guaranteeing access to health care for those with pre-existing conditions and protecting the right to vote, just to name a few. I will make my decision after that.”
Jon Tester of Montana on September 12 — “We’re going to be reviewing the transcript of the judiciary hearing pretty hard over the next couple of days to see how he answered the questions, if he answered the questions. And then also I want to add the in-person meeting. I’m going to be visiting with him about issues on security and campaign finance and choice and other things.”
Joe Donnelly of Indiana on September 12 — I’m still reviewing everything at this point.”
Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota on September 12 — “I’m still reviewing the record.”

More undecided Democrats

Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada on July 9 — “I plan to meet with Judge Kavanaugh in the coming months and will review his qualifications thoroughly.”
Chris Coons of Delaware on September 12 — “I sent Judge Kavanaugh a substantial list of questions for the record yesterday, maybe Monday. I’m giving him a week to respond. I’ll make up my mind and make a public announcement after that. As should have been clear from my questioning in the confirmation hearing, I have grave concerns about his judicial philosophy around presidential power and a number of settled and important individual liberty rights.”

Democrats opposing

Chuck Schumer of New York on July 9 — “I will oppose Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination with everything I have, and I hope a bipartisan majority will do the same. The stakes are simply too high for anything less.”
Kamala Harris of California on July 9 — “Judge Brett Kavanaugh represents a direct and fundamental threat to that promise of equality and so I will oppose his nomination to the Supreme Court.”
Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut on July 9 — “I will be a ‘no’ vote on this nominee. Judge Kavanaugh’s record and writings — which I have reviewed — signal an extreme hostility to the precious rights and liberties that make our nation great.”
Bob Casey of Pennsylvania on July 9 –– “I will oppose the nomination the President will make tonight because it represents a corrupt bargain with the far right, big corporations and Washington special interests.”
Patty Murray of Washington state on July 10 — “I voted against Judge Kavanaugh when he was nominated for the circuit court and I strongly oppose this nomination now. I will be urging my colleagues to stand with me in rejecting him, and in calling on President Trump to send us someone who would stand with women, workers and families, and who would truly commit to respecting settled law and the rights and freedoms we hold so dear. And I will be urging people across the country to stand up, speak out and make their voices heard.”
Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin on July 12 — “After reviewing this nominee’s record, I know why powerful special interests in Washington selected Judge Brett Kavanaugh to work on the Supreme Court for them, not the people of Wisconsin,” she said in a statement. “The people of Wisconsin need a fair, impartial and independent Supreme Court Justice who will stand up for them, not for powerful special interests. I don’t have confidence that Judge Kavanaugh would be that justice.”
Tammy Duckworth of Illinois on July 19 — Based on his own words and writing, I fear that Judge Kavanaugh would be the deciding vote in critical cases that restrict a woman’s freedom to make health care decisions with her doctor, tear away protections that guarantee Americans with pre-existing conditions may obtain health insurance and empower a president of the United States to act as though he is above the law. Judge Kavanaugh should not be confirmed as the next Supreme Court justice, and he will not have my vote.”
Brian Schatz of Hawaii on September 4 — “I’ve seen enough. As long as the Republicans refuse to release 96% of the Kavanaugh records, this process is illegitimate. Every other Supreme Court nominee has turned over nearly everything, and I am now convinced they are hiding something. I will vote no.”
Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire on September 10 “Judge Kavanaugh’s past rulings on abortion demonstrate that he is willing to infringe on a woman’s constitutionally protected right to make her own reproductive decisions, and his failure to answer questions about the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act’s protections for pre-existing conditions puts the health and well-being of millions of Americans at risk. After careful consideration of his record and reviewing the limited documents made available to the US Senate, I have come to the conclusion that I cannot support Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to serve on the US Supreme Court.”
Mark Warner of Virginia on September 11:“I would have liked to meet with Judge Kavanaugh personally before deciding how I’d vote. Even attempted to set up a meeting with him, though unfortunately the White House never responded. So I’m just going to say it. I’ll be voting no on Judge Kavanaugh.”
Claire McCaskill of Missouri in a statement on September 19: “While I am also uncomfortable about his view on Presidential power as it relates to the rule of law, and his position that corporations are people, it is his allegiance to the position that unlimited donations and dark anonymous money, from even foreign interests, should be allowed to swamp the voices of individuals that has been the determining factor in my decision to vote no on his nomination.”

Democrats appearing to lean opposing

Dianne Feinstein of California on July 9 — “His views are far outside the legal mainstream when it comes to access to health care, executive power, gun safety, worker protections, women’s reproductive freedom and the government’s ability to ensure clean air and water, to name a few. … We need a nominee who understands that the court is there to protect the rights of all Americans, not just political interest groups and the powerful.”
Patrick Leahy of Vermont on July 9 — “Based on an initial review of Judge Kavanaugh’s record, we are right to be concerned. … He must not evade fundamental questions that judicial nominees have answered for decades until recently. He needs to explain why we should believe he would be a justice for all Americans, independent of the President and the ideologically driven interest groups that selected him.”

Independents opposing (both caucus with Democrats)

Bernie Sanders of Vermont on July 10 — “I do not believe a person with those views should be given a lifetime seat on the Supreme Court. We must mobilize the American people to defeat Trump’s right-wing, reactionary nominee.”
Angus King of Maine on September 12: — “Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination is one of the most important votes I will take in the Senate — and after carefully studying his record (at least the part that is available) and judicial philosophy, I have decided that I will vote no on his confirmation.”

Undecided Republicans to watch

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska on July 9 — “While I have not met Judge Kavanaugh, I look forward to sitting down for a personal meeting with him. I intend to review Judge Kavanaugh’s decisions on the bench and writings off the bench, and pay careful attention to his responses to questions posed by my colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee.”
Jeff Flake of Arizona on July 9 — “As I have said before, approving a nominee who will interpret the Constitution rather than legislate from the bench should be our top priority. I look forward to meeting with Judge Kavanaugh and reviewing his record throughout the confirmation process.”
Susan Collins of Maine on September 12 — “I am still completing my due diligence. I spent an hour today going through the committee’s sensitive documents at the Judiciary Committee that have not yet been released. I would note, however, that every document Democrats asked to have cleared and released was released by the order of the Justice Department and President Bush. So what I’m finding is that a lot of the information has not necessarily been accurately presented, and that’s why I think it’s really important I continue my review. I am also going to be talking to the judge later this week with a few more questions that I have.”

Republicans voting yes

Ted Cruz of Texas on July 9 — “By any measure, Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most respected federal judges in the country and I look forward to supporting his nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States.”
Dan Sullivan of Alaska on July 9 — “I think he meets all the qualifications of what we as a Senate should be looking for in terms of the confirmation process and I plan on supporting Judge Kavanaugh as a next associate justice of the Supreme Court.”
Orrin Hatch of Utah on July 11 — “I was very pleased to meet with Judge Kavanaugh this morning. He’s handled himself very well and comes with a lot of experience, coming from the second-greatest court in the land. I expect his confirmation to go well. I very much enjoyed talking with him for a few minutes.”
Rob Portman of Ohio on July 11 — “I can’t think of anybody better qualified to be on the United States Supreme Court. He obviously has had a distinguished record.”
Ben Sasse of Nebraska on July 12 — “The judge I met today doesn’t sound anything like the imaginary bogeyman that Democrats are railing against. I think Nebraskans are going to like this humble judge who is clearly most proud of his two daughters. Judge Kavanaugh is a serious thinker and a careful jurist who understands that our system of checks and balances and our First Amendment freedoms make America great.”
John Cornyn of Texas on July 12 — “I have known the judge for a long time. I’ve followed his record. I think he is the type of judge that we need on the Supreme Court, not one who is going to be making policy or legislating from the bench. I think he very much shares the same judicial philosophy as Justice Gorsuch so I look forward to supporting his confirmation.”
Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia on July 12 — “After meeting with Judge Kavanaugh today, I’m even more certain that he is a man of integrity and that he understands and respects the responsibilities of a Supreme Court justice, which is why I plan to support his nomination. Judge Kavanaugh and I had a wide-ranging discussion about our separation-of-powers system, the court’s responsibility to properly apply laws passed by Congress to guard against overreach by federal agencies, and the importance of respecting precedent to promote stability in the law. I know Judge Kavanaugh will be an excellent addition to the court and will honor and strengthen this important branch of our democracy.”
Thom Tillis of North Carolina on July 18 –– “As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, I look forward to strongly supporting his nomination and will work to ensure the Senate moves swiftly to confirm him.”
Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi on July 25 — “I firmly believe the President made a great decision in nominating Judge Kavanaugh. I’m excited about his nomination, and look forward to supporting him and being an advocate for his confirmation.”
Richard Shelby of Alabama on July 30 — “Confirming Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most important things we will do during this Congress. I look forward to supporting his nomination to serve on our nation’s highest court, and I urge my colleagues to do the same.”
Rand Paul of Kentucky on July 30 — “After meeting Judge Kavanaugh and reviewing his record, I have decided to support his nomination. No one will ever completely agree with a nominee (unless of course, you are the nominee). Each nominee however, must be judged on the totality of their views character and opinions,” Paul wrote in a series of tweets.
Marco Rubio of Florida on August 1 — His answers reflected what the American people voted for when they elected the president and a Republican-controlled Senate less than two years ago. I intend to support his nomination because of his stated commitment to interpreting and defending the Constitution as written.”
John Thune of South Dakota on August 1 — “I will support his nomination to the Supreme Court this fall, and I hope my colleagues, Republican and Democrat, reach the same conclusion about this well-qualified, mainstream jurist.”
John Boozman of Arkansas on August 1 — The first thing that stood out when Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination was announced was his exceptional record on the bench and the high level of respect his peers hold for him. After having an opportunity to visit with him, I find Judge Kavanaugh to be even more impressive than his resume and reputation alone suggest. I am confident that he is a fair and thoughtful jurist who will respect the Constitution and refrain from legislating from the bench. He is the exact type of judge we need on the Supreme Court.”
John Hoeven of North Dakota on August 1 — “I appreciated the opportunity to meet with Judge Kavanaugh today to discuss his judicial philosophy. Having served for more than a decade on the federal appeals court, he is highly qualified to serve on the Supreme Court. Judge Kavanuagh has a strong record of upholding the law rather than legislating from the bench and his approach to the law shows a deep respect for the Constitution. Given his years of experience on the bench and his commitment to upholding the law, I believe that Judge Kavanaugh is a solid choice for the Supreme Court and I look forward to supporting his confirmation to serve on the Supreme Court.”
Ron Johnson of Wisconsin on August 15 — Judge Kavanaugh’s impressive legal background combined with his compelling personal history makes his nomination an easy one to support. Most importantly, as I have reviewed his judicial record I am confident of his intent to apply the law as a judge, not alter it as a super-legislator. I look forward to voting to confirm his nomination to the Supreme Court once the Senate has thoroughly but expeditiously completed the confirmation process.”
Johnny Isakson of Georgia on August 16 —He’s a regular guy. He’s a brilliant man. He cares about his country deeply. He believes in his country and feels a responsibility he wants to assume at this time in life. I can’t think of any better reason to vote for him. I’m going to vote for him with pride, and I encourage my fellow senators… to join me as well.”
Lindsey Graham of South Carolina on September 4 — The antidote to our problems in this country when it comes to judges and politics is not to deny you (Kavanaugh) a place on the Supreme Court. This is exactly where you need to be. This is exactly the time you need to be there.”
Todd Young of Indiana on September 6 “Earlier this week, I spoke with @WSBT about Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing. Judge Kavanaugh will be an excellent addition to our nation’s highest court, and the Republican-led Senate will continue to move through regular order to confirm him.”

Republicans appearing to lean yes

Richard Burr of North Carolina on July 9 — “In nominating Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, President Trump has put forth a highly qualified and respected candidate committed to the rule of law. Judge Kavanaugh’s credentials are impeccable, and as a judge for the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit he has considered many of the most pressing legal questions of our time.”
Ted Cruz of Texas on July 9 — “By any measure, Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most respected federal judges in the country and I look forward to supporting his nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States.”
Mike Enzi of Wyoming on July 19 — “It was great to talk with Judge Kavanaugh about his years of experience and dedication to the judicial system. He is an extremely well qualified nominee whose prior rulings and writings demonstrate his commitment to the Constitution and the rule of law. I appreciated his thoughtful answers to my questions and look forward to the Senate’s consideration of his nomination this fall.”
This story will be updated with additional developments.

 

Story 2. Senator Cruz Should Win Second Term — Build The Wall Will Win in Texas — Videos

Ted Cruz Thinks He’s Going To Beat Beto O’Rourke (HBO)

Beto O’Rourke pulls ahead of Ted Cruz in new Texas poll

Ted Cruz Whines About Being Ugly

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Ted Cruz Supporters Expressing ‘Alarm’ As Beto O’Rourke Fever Spreads In Texas | Deadline | MSNBC

Beto O’Rourke’s Fight To Take Down Ted Cruz (HBO)

What a campaign ad mocking Beto O’Rourke says about Ted Cruz

Cruz seeks Trump’s help in tightening Texas Senate race

Illegal Immigration Has Black Americans “Struggling for Our Very Lives”

Black Americans Fight the Illegal Alien Invasion!

 

During a town hall event on Wednesday night, Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) — running against Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) for the Senate seat — told a black American who questioned his support of illegal immigration that illegal aliens from Central America and Mexico are today’s cotton pickers.

O’Rourke’s remarks were made after a black American asked the congressman if he supported illegal aliens being given U.S. citizenship despite breaking the country’s immigration laws. O’Rourke responded by saying that it is illegal aliens who are working at cotton gins today.

The exchange went as follows:

BLACK AMERICAN: My question is, do you support granting citizenship and American-paid benefits to illegal aliens who violated our country to come here, who fly their foreign flags here, who have citizenship in their countries and whose families did absolutely not build this country, while black people are subject to things that you explained before? You can answer yes or no, please. [Emphasis added]

BETO O’ROURKEMany, many people built this country, first of all. And we are a country of many people … and I’m paraphrasing Congressman Lewis at this point, but he said something to the effect that each of us came to this country in a different ship. Some of us came here against our will, some of us immigrated here lawfully … some of us are showing up right now as we speak. They’re fleeing the deadliest countries in the planet today. The northern triangle countries of Central America … imagine how bad things have to be for you to scoop up that six-month-old daughter of yours and to walk 2,000 miles … to refuge in a country that is comprised of people from the world over. And yes, there are some people who did not follow our laws when they came here to be with their families or to work jobs and, in some cases, no one was willing to work in their communities. [Emphasis added]

I mentioned going to the high school in Roscoe, I also went to the cotton gin in Roscoe. And at that cotton gin, there are 24 jobs and the manager of that gin says it does not matter the wages that I pay or the number of hours that we set … no one born in Roscoe … or Texas or this country who is willing to work. But there are immigrants who are coming from Central America or Mexico or other parts of the world to Roscoe to work these jobs and to help build our economy. [Emphasis added]

O’Rourke recently said in an interview on CBS The Late Show, that he supported an amnesty for more than three million illegal aliens who were eligible and enrolled for President Obama’s DACA program.

“We can free DREAMers from the fear of deportation by making them U.S. citizens today, so they can contribute to their maximum capacity, to their full potential,” O’Rourke said.

New Policy Has Drivers Stunned in Texas
Finance Daily

Mass low-skilled illegal and legal immigration has come at the expense of America’s black working and middle-class communities and workers.

Data reported by Breitbart News reveals how studies by economists and researchers find that it is, specifically, underprivileged black American men who suffer the most from the importation of more than 1.5 million low-skilled immigrants every year to the U.S.

In the mid-1990s, Civil Rights icon and Texas Democratic Congresswoman Barbara Jordan issued the findings of her immigration commission, where she revealed that mass immigration to the U.S. hurt poor, working-class and lower-tier middle-class Americans the most, as it unfairly put them in competition with a never-ending flow of cheaper, foreign workers.

Most impacted, the Jordan Commission discovered, were black Americans.

Portraying foreign nationals as the only willing blue-collar workers in the U.S. is a talking point often used by the open borders lobby, the Business Roundtable, and both political establishments.

O’Rourke’s suggestion that Americans are unwilling to do blue-collar jobs is not backed up by data collected and analyzed by the Center for Immigration Studies.

Researcher Steven Camarota has found that of the more than 460 American occupations he analyzed, only four were dominated by foreign-born workers. Those four occupations accounted for less than one percent of the total U.S. workforce.

Many American blue-collar workers pick cotton, often in very high temperatures, using American-made machinery, such as this cotton harvesting machine used in north Alabama:

For blue-collar American workers, mass immigration has not only kept wages down but in many cases, decreased wages, as Breitbart News reported. Meanwhile, the U.S. continues importing more foreign nationals against whom working-class Americans are forced to compete. In 2016, the U.S. brought in about 1.8 million mostly low-skilled immigrants.

Black Americans are often the most supportive of reducing immigration levels. A Harvard/Harris Poll conducted this year found that 48 percent of black Americans said they would like to see between only one and 250,000 legal immigrants brought to the U.S. a year, a near immigration moratorium when compared to current levels.

A CBS News/YouGov Poll conducted a few months ago revealed that a plurality of black Americans in swing districts who say immigration has changed their neighborhoods concede that immigration is making life in America “worse” for them.

About 36 percent of black Americans said immigration has changed their communities, and roughly 45 percent of those black Americans say the mass importation of mostly immigrants from Central America is making their lives worse off.

Story 3: Chinese Communist Island Building in South China Sea Will Backfire and Unite Countries In The Region Against Them — Videos —

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Trump, China and the South China Sea: Will Tensions Grow?

US destroyer in South China Sea

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South China Sea: ‘Leave immediately and keep far off’ – BBC News

Why China is building islands in the South China Sea

“CBSN: On Assignment” gets rare look inside Andersen Air Force Base in Guam

What you need to know about Guam, the tiny island home to U.S. base

Guam: Why America’s Most Isolated Territory Exists

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China’s Sea Control Is a Done Deal, ‘Short of War With the U.S.’

Posted 4:03 p.m. today

A view of Subi Reef and an array of vessels, seen from a U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon reconnaissance plane during a mission to observe China's militarization of islands in the South China Sea, in International Airspace, Sept. 5, 2018. The flight brings harsh Chinese challenges in officially international space. In congressional testimony by one officer, China is said to be capable of control over the South China Sea "in all scenarios short of war with the United States.” (Adam Dean/The New York Times)

NEAR MISCHIEF REEF, South China Sea — As the United States Navy reconnaissance plane banked low near Mischief Reef in the South China Sea early this month, a Chinese warning crackled on the radio.

“U.S. military aircraft,” came the challenge, delivered in English in a harsh staccato. “You have violated our China sovereignty and infringed on our security and our rights. You need to leave immediately and keep far out.”

Aboard the P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, flying in what is widely considered to be international airspace, Lt. Dyanna Coughlin scanned a live camera feed showing the dramatic evolution of Mischief Reef.

Five years ago, this was mostly an arc of underwater atoll populated by tropical fish and turtles. Now Mischief Reef, which is off the Philippine coast but controlled by China, has been filled out and turned into a Chinese military base, complete with radar domes, shelters for surface-to-air missiles and a runway long enough for fighter jets. Six other nearby shoals have been similarly transformed by Chinese dredging.

“I mean, this is insane,” Coughlin said. “Look at all that crazy construction.”

A rare visit on board a U.S. Navy surveillance flight over the South China Sea pointed out how profoundly China has reshaped the security landscape across the region.

The country’s aggressive territorial claims and island militarization have put neighboring countries and the United States on the defensive, even as President Donald Trump’s administration is stepping up efforts to highlight China’s controversial island-building campaign.

In congressional testimony before assuming his new post as head of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command in May, Adm. Philip Davidson sounded a stark warning about Beijing’s power play in a sea through which roughly one-third of global maritime trade flows.

“In short, China is now capable of controlling the South China Sea in all scenarios short of war with the United States,” Davidson said, an assessment that caused some consternation in the Pentagon.

How Beijing relates to its neighbors in the South China Sea could be a harbinger of its interactions elsewhere in the world. President Xi Jinping of China has held up the island-building effort as a prime example of “China moving closer to center stage” and standing “tall and firm in the East.”

In a June meeting with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Xi vowed that China “cannot lose even one inch of the territory” in the South China Sea, even though an international tribunal has dismissed Beijing’s expansive claims to the waterway.

The reality is that governments with overlapping territorial claims — representing Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei — lack the firepower to challenge China. The U.S. has long fashioned itself as a keeper of peace in the Western Pacific. But it’s a risky proposition to provoke conflict over a scattering of rocks in the South China Sea, analysts say.

“As China’s military power grows relative to the United States, and it will, questions will also grow regarding America’s ability to deter Beijing’s use of force in settling its unresolved territorial issues,” said Rear Adm. Michael McDevitt, a senior fellow in strategic studies at the Center for Naval Analyses.

An unexpected encounter in the South China Sea could also set off an international incident. A 1.4-million-square-mile sea presents a kaleidoscope of shifting variables: hundreds of disputed shoals, thousands of fishing boats, coast guard vessels and warships and, increasingly, a collection of Chinese fortresses.

In late August, one of the Philippines’ largest warships, a cast-off cutter from the U.S. Coast Guard, ran aground on Half Moon Shoal, an unoccupied maritime feature not far from Mischief Reef.

The Chinese, who also claim the shoal, sent vessels from nearby artificial islands, but the Philippines refused any help. After all, in 2012, the Chinese coast guard had muscled the Philippines off Scarborough Shoal, a reef just 120 nautical miles from the main Philippine island of Luzon. Another incident in 1995 brought a Chinese flag to Mischief Reef, also well within what international maritime law considers a zone where the Philippines has sovereign rights.

Could somewhere like Half Moon Shoal be the next flash point in the South China Sea?

“A crisis at Half Moon was averted, but it has always been the risk with the South China Sea that a small incident in remote waters escalates into a much-larger crisis through miscommunication or mishandling,” said Ian Storey, a senior fellow at the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute in Singapore. “That’s why this is all so dangerous. It’s not just a pile of rocks that can be ignored.”

‘Leave immediately!’

On the scratchy radio channel, the Chinese challenges kept on coming. Eight separate times during the mission this month, Chinese dispatchers queried the P-8A Poseidon. Twice, the Chinese accused the American military aircraft not just of veering close to what Beijing considered its airspace but also of violating its sovereignty.

“Leave immediately!” the Chinese warned over and over.

Cmdr. Chris Purcell, the executive officer of the surveillance plane, said such challenges have been routine during the four months he has flown missions over the South China Sea.

“What they want is for us to leave, and then they can say that we left because this is their sovereign territory,” he said. “It’s kind of their way to try to legitimize their claims, but we are clear that we are operating in international airspace and are not doing anything different from what we’ve done for decades.”

In 2015, Xi stood in the Rose Garden at the White House and promised that “there is no intention to militarize” a collection of disputed reefs in the South China Sea known as the Spratlys.

But since then, Chinese dredgers have poured mountains of sand onto Mischief Reef and six other Chinese-controlled features in the Spratlys. China has added at least 3,200 acres of new land in the area, according to the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative run by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Descending as low as 5,000 feet, the surveillance flight this month gave a bird’s-eye view of the Chinese construction.

On Subi Reef, a construction crane swung into action next to a shelter designed for surface-to-air missiles. There were barracks, bunkers and open hangars. At least 70 vessels, some warships, surrounded the island.

On Fiery Cross Reef, a complex of buildings with Chinese eaves was arrayed at the center of the reclaimed island, including an exhibition-style hall with an undulating roof. It looked like a typical newly built town in interior China — except for the radar domes that protruded like giant golf balls across the reef. A military-grade runway ran the length of the island, and army vehicles trundled across the tarmac. Antenna farms bristled.

“It’s impressive to see the Chinese building, given that this is the middle of the South China Sea and far away from anywhere, but the idea that this isn’t militarized, that’s clearly not the case,” Purcell said. “It’s not hidden or anything. The intention, it’s there plain to see.” In other spots, reclamation could also be seen on Vietnamese-controlled features, such as West London Reef, where workers dragged equipment past piles of sand. But dredging by Southeast Asian nations is scant compared with the Chinese effort.

In April, China for the first time deployed antiship and antiaircraft missiles on Mischief, Subi and Fiery Cross, U.S. military officials said. The following month, a long-range bomber landed on Woody Island, another contested South China Sea islet.

A Pentagon report released in August said that with forward-operating bases on artificial islands in the South China Sea, the People’s Liberation Army was honing its “capability to strike U.S. and allied forces and military bases in the western Pacific Ocean, including Guam.”

In response to the intensifying militarization of the South China Sea, the U.S. in May disinvited China from joining the biannual Rim of the Pacific naval exercise, the world’s largest maritime warfare training, involving more than 20 navies.

“We are prepared to support China’s choices, if they promote long-term peace and prosperity,” Mattis said, explaining the snub. “Yet China’s policy in the South China Sea stands in stark contrast to the openness of our strategy.”

Projecting Power

For its part, Beijing claims the U.S. is the one militarizing the South China Sea. In addition to the routine surveillance flyovers, Trump has sent U.S. warships more frequently to waters near China’s man-made islands. These so-called freedom of navigation patrols, which occur worldwide, are meant to show the United States’ commitment to maritime free passage, Pentagon officials say.

The last such operation by the U.S. was in May, when two American warships sailed near the Paracels, another contested South China Sea archipelago. Beijing was irate.

“Certain people in the U.S. are staging a farce of a thief crying, ‘Stop, thief!’ ” said Hua Chunying, a Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman. “It is self-evident to a keener eye who is militarizing the South China Sea.”

The U.S. says that it does not take any side in territorial disputes in the South China Sea. On its maps, China uses a so-called nine-dash line to scoop out most of the waterway’s turf as its own. But international legal precedent is not on China’s side when it comes to the dashed demarcation, a version of which was first used in the 1940s.

In 2016, an international tribunal dismissed Beijing’s nine-dash claim, judging that China has no historical rights to the South China Sea. The case was brought by the Philippines after Scarborough Shoal was commandeered by China in 2012, following a tense blockade.

The landmark ruling, however, has had no practical effect. That’s in large part because Rodrigo Duterte, who became president of the Philippines less than a month before the tribunal reached its decision, chose not to press the matter with Beijing. He declared China his new best friend and dismissed the U.S. as a has-been power. But last month, Duterte took Beijing to task when a recording aired on the BBC from another P-8A Poseidon mission over the South China Sea demonstrated that Chinese dispatchers were taking a far more aggressive tone with Philippine aircraft than with American ones.

“I hope China would temper its behavior,” Duterte said. “You cannot create an island and say the air above it is yours.”

Missed Opportunities

Perceptions of power — and Chinese reactions to these projections — have led some analysts to criticize President Barack Obama as having been too timid in countering China over what Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., the former head of theU.S. Pacific Command, memorably called a “great wall of sand” in the South China Sea.

Critics, for instance, have faulted the previous administration for not conducting more frequent freedom of navigation patrols.

“China’s militarization of the South China Sea has been a gradual process, with several phases where alternative actions by the U.S., as well as other countries, could have changed the course of history,” said Alexander Vuving, a professor at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies in Honolulu.

Chief among these moments, Vuving said, was China’s takeover of Scarborough Shoal. The U.S. declined to back up the Philippines, a defense treaty ally, by sending Coast Guard vessels or warships to an area that international law has designated as within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.

“Seeing U.S. commitment to its ally, Beijing might not have been as confident as it was with its island-building program,” Vuving said. “The U.S. failure to support its ally in the Scarborough standoff also demonstrated to people like Duterte that he had no other option than to kowtow to China.” With most of the Spratly military bases nearing completion by the end of the year, according to Pentagon assessments, the next question is whether — or more likely when — China will begin building on Scarborough. A Chinese base there would put the People’s Liberation Army in easy striking distance of the Philippine capital, Manila.

From the American reconnaissance plane, Scarborough looked like a perfect diving retreat, a lazy triangle of reef sheltering turquoise waters. But Chinese coast guard vessels could be seen circling the shoal, and Philippine fishermen have complained about being prevented from accessing their traditional waters.

“Do you see any construction vessels around there?” Coughlin asked.

“Negative, ma’am,” replied Lt. Joshua Grant, as he used a control stick to position the plane’s camera over Scarborough Shoal. “We’ll see if it changes next time.”

https://www.wral.com/china-s-sea-control-is-a-done-deal-short-of-war-with-the-u-s-/17861457/

US warns of ability to take down Chinese artificial islands

China is not even pretending anymore in the South China Sea — it put 400 buildings on one of the disputed islands

Subi Reef South China Sea small
A satellite photo of Subi Reef on March 20.
 Planet Labs/Handout via REUTERS
  • Satellite imagery shows that China has put nearly 400 buildings on Subi Reef in the South China Sea.
  • Data shows that the number of buildings on Subi Reef is about double that on China’s other large outposts in the hotly contested region, known as the Spratly Islands.
  • Experts are concerned about China’s increasing militarization of the South China Sea, and they say it may plan to host a large number of troops on Subi Reef.

Satellite imagery shows nearly 400 buildings on a reef occupied by China in the South China Sea, and experts say it indicates Beijing might eventually deploy troops there.

Using images from DigitalGlobe satellites, the nonprofit Earthrise Media analyzed photos of Subi Reef, which is closer to Vietnam and the Philippines than mainland China, and discovered that a large number of buildings, parade grounds, radar equipment, and even basketball courts had been built since 2014.

There were nearly 400 permanent, free-standing buildings, Earthrise’s founder, Dan Hammer, told Reuters. Subi has seen the most construction by any country on an island in the South China Sea, the news outlet reported.

Subi is China’s largest man-made island within the Spratly archipelago, parts of which are claimed by several countries. Citing Earthrise data, Reuters reported that Subi has about double the number of buildings on each of China’s next two largest islands in the region.

The increase in buildings indicates Subi may one day host a large contingent of People’s Liberation Army marines, experts say.

Last week, China released footage of H-6K nuclear-capable bombers landing on another island in the South China Sea. Runways and hangars built on Subi could accommodate such bombers.

And on Wednesday, the US uninvited China from a military exercise, citing “China’s continued militarization of disputed features in the South China Sea.”

Adm. Philip Davidson, the incoming US Pacific Command chief,told a congressional panel last month that “in short, China is now capable of controlling the South China Sea in all scenarios short of war with the United States.”

The South China Sea is a highly contentious area with many natural resources that is also one of the world’s main shipping corridors. China, Brunei, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines have competing claims to areas of the sea and its islands.

Data from Earthrise shows that China has more buildings in the South China Sea — 1,652 — than all other claimants put together,Reuters reported.

Davidson said last month that China’s growing presence in the South China Sea presented a substantial challenge to regional US military operations, adding that China’s military was “executing deliberate and thoughtful force posture initiatives.”

“China claims that these reclaimed features … will not be used for military means, but their words do not match their actions,” Davidson said.

He added: “Once occupied, China will be able to extend its influence thousands of miles to the south and project power deep into Oceania. The PLA will be able to use these bases to challenge US presence in the region, and any forces deployed to the islands would easily overwhelm the military forces of any other South China Sea claimants.”

https://www.businessinsider.com/china-400-buildings-subi-reef-south-china-sea-2018-5

Exclusive economic zone

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Sea areas in international rights

An exclusive economic zone (EEZ) is a sea zone prescribed by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea over which a state has special rights regarding the exploration and use of marine resources, including energy production from water and wind.[1] It stretches from the baseline out to 200 nautical miles (nmi) from its coast. In colloquial usage, the term may include the continental shelf. The term does not include either the territorial sea or the continental shelf beyond the 200 nmi limit. The difference between the territorial sea and the exclusive economic zone is that the first confers full sovereignty over the waters, whereas the second is merely a “sovereign right” which refers to the coastal state’s rights below the surface of the sea. The surface waters, as can be seen in the map, are international waters.[2]

Definition

The World’s exclusive economic zones, shown in dark blue

EEC’s in the Atlantic and Indian Ocean

EEC’s in the Pacific Ocean

Generally, a state’s exclusive economic zone is an area beyond and adjacent to the territorial sea, extending seaward to a distance of no more than 200 nmi (370 km) out from its coastal baseline. The exception to this rule occurs when exclusive economic zones would overlap; that is, state coastal baselines are less than 400 nmi (740 km) apart. When an overlap occurs, it is up to the states to delineate the actual maritime boundary.[3] Generally, any point within an overlapping area defaults to the nearest state.[4]

A state’s exclusive economic zone starts at the seaward edge of its territorial sea and extends outward to a distance of 200 nmi (370 km) from the baseline. The exclusive economic zone stretches much further into sea than the territorial waters, which end at 12 nmi (22 km) from the coastal baseline (if following the rules set out in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea).[5] Thus, the exclusive economic zones includes the contiguous zone. States also have rights to the seabed of what is called the continental shelf up to 350 nmi (650 km) from the coastal baseline, beyond the exclusive economic zones, but such areas are not part of their exclusive economic zones. The legal definition of the continental shelf does not directly correspond to the geological meaning of the term, as it also includes the continental rise and slope, and the entire seabed within the exclusive economic zone.

Origin

The idea of allotting nations EEZs to give them more control of maritime affairs outside territorial limits gained acceptance in the late 20th century.

Initially, a country’s sovereign territorial waters extended 3 nmi or 5.6 km (range of cannon shot) beyond the shore. In modern times, a country’s sovereign territorial waters extend to 12 nmi (22 km) beyond the shore. One of the first assertions of exclusive jurisdiction beyond the traditional territorial seas was made by the United States in the Truman Proclamation of September 28, 1945. However, it was Chile and Peru respectively that first claimed maritime zones of 200 nautical miles with the Presidential Declaration Concerning Continental Shelf of 23 June 1947 (El Mercurio, Santiago de Chile, 29 June 1947) and Presidential Decree No. 781 of 1 August 1947 (El Peruano: Diario Oficial. Vol. 107, No. 1983, 11 August 1947).[6]

It was not until 1982 with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea that the 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone was formally adopted.

Disputes

The exact extent of exclusive economic zones is a common source of conflicts between states over marine waters.

Potential disputes

Regions where a permanent ice shelf extends beyond the coastline are also a source of potential dispute.[11]

Resolved disputes

Transboundary stocks

Fisheries management, usually adhering to guidelines set by the FAO, provides significant practical mechanisms for the control of EEZs. Transboundary fish stocks are an important concept in this control.[15] Transboundary stocks are fish stocks that range in the EEZs of at least two countries. Straddling stocks, on the other hand, range both within an EEZ as well as in the high seas, outside any EEZ. A stock can be both transboundary and straddling.[16]

By country

Argentina

Argentina‘s exclusive economic zone including territorial claims. Considering the maritime areas claimed, the total area of the Argentine reaches 3,849,756 km²

Australia

Australia‘s exclusive economic zones including Antarctic claim

Australia‘s Exclusive Economic Zone was declared on 1 August 1994, and extends from 12 nautical miles to 200 nautical miles (370 km) from the coastline of Australia and its external territories, except where a maritime delimitation agreement exists with another state.[17][18] To the 12 nautical miles boundary is Australia’s territorial waters. Australia has the third largest exclusive economic zone, behind France and the United States, but ahead of Russia, with the total area of 8,148,250 square kilometres, which actually exceeds its land territory.

The United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf confirmed, in April 2008, Australia’s rights over an additional 2.5 million square kilometres of seabed beyond the limits of Australia’s EEZ.[19][20]Australia also claimed, in its submission to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, additional Continental Shelf past its EEZ from the Australian Antarctic Territory,[21] but these claims were deferred on Australia’s request. However, Australia’s EEZ from its Antarctic Territory is approximately 2 million square kilometres.[20]

EEZ Area (km2)[20]
Heard and McDonald Islands 410,722
 Christmas Island 463,371
 Cocos Islands 325,021
 Norfolk Island 428,618
Macquarie Island 471,837
Mainland Australia, Tasmania and minor islands 6,048,681
Australian Antarctic Territory 2,000,000[status 1]
Total 10,148,250

Brazil

Brazil‘s exclusive economic zones

Brazil’s EEZ includes areas around the Fernando de Noronha Islands, St Paul and St. Peter Archipelago and the Trindade and Martim Islands.

EEZ Area (km2)[22]
 Brazil 2 400 917
Bandeira de Fernando de Noronha.png Fernando de Noronha 363 362
St Paul and St. Peter Archipelago 413 636
Trindade & Martim Vaz Isl. 468 599
Total 3 646 514

In 2004, the country submitted its claims to the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) to extend its maritime continental margin.[23]

Canada

Canada‘s exclusive economic zone and territorial waters

Canada is unusual in that its exclusive economic zone, covering 5,599,077 km2 (2,161,816 sq mi), is slightly smaller than its territorial waters.[24] The latter generally extend only 12 nautical miles from the shore, but also include inland marine waters such as Hudson Bay (about 300 nautical miles (560 km; 350 mi) across), the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and the internal waters of the Arctic archipelago.

Chile

Chile‘s exclusive economic zones, including Antarctic claim

Chile’s EEZ includes areas around the Desventuradas IslandsEaster Island and the Juan Fernández Islands.

Region EEZ Area (km2)[25] Land area Total
Mainland 1 975 760 755 757 2 731 517
Desventuradas 449 836
Easter 720 412 164 720 576
Juan Fernandez 502 524
Total 3 648 532 755 921 4 404 453

There is a dispute with Peru over the extent of Chile’s EEZ: Chilean–Peruvian maritime dispute

China

People’s Republic of China‘s exclusive economic zone:

  China’s EEZ

877,019 km2

  EEZ claimed by China, disputed by Taiwan
  EEZ claimed by China, disputed by others

3,000,000 km2 Total:3,877,019

The first figure excludes all disputed waters, while the last figure indicates China’s claimed boundaries, and does not take into account neighboring powers’ claims.

Cyprus

Exclusive economic zone between Israel and Cyprus as signed in Nicosia. (Labels in Hebrew.)

The Exclusive Economic Zone of Cyprus covers more than 70,000 km2 and is divided between 13 exploration blocks. The process of the establishment of Cyprus, Israel and Lebanon Exclusive Economic Zones was held in Nicosiain 2010 with separate meetings between each country.[26] Cyprus and Israel as part of their wider cooperation have agreed to start their gas explorations with a common American company, specifically Noble Energy. Cypriot and Israeli governments are discussing to export their natural gas through the shipping of compressed Natural Gas to Greece and then to the rest of Europe or through a subsea Pipelines starting from Israel and then leading to Greece via Cyprus.[27][28]

Denmark

The exclusive economic zones and territorial waters of the Kingdom of Denmark

The Kingdom of Denmark includes the constituent country (selvstyre) of Greenland and the constituent country (hjemmestyre) of the Faroe Islands.

Region EEZ & TW Area (km2)[29] Land area Total
 Denmark 105 989 42 506 149 083
 Faroe Islands 260 995 1 399 262 394
 Greenland 2 184 254 2 166 086 4 350 340
Total 2 551 238 2 210 579 4 761 817

France

Exclusive economic zones of France, including Antarctic territorial claim

Due to its numerous overseas departments and territories scattered on all oceans of the planet, France possesses the largest EEZ in the world, covering 11,691,000 km2 (4,514,000 mi2), the EEZ of the United States is the second largest (11,351,000 km2 / 4,382,000 mi2). The EEZ of France covers approximately 8% of the total surface of all the EEZs of the world, whereas the land area of the French Republic is only 0.45% of the total land area of the Earth.

Region EEZ & TW Area (km2)[20] Land area Total
 Metropolitan France 334,604 551,695 886,299
 French Guiana 133,949 83,846 217,795
 Guadeloupe 95,978 1,628 97,606
 Martinique 47,640 1,128 48,768
 Réunion 315,058 2,512 317,570
 French Polynesia 4,767,242 4,167 4,771,409
 Saint Pierre and Miquelon 12,334 242 12,576
 Mayotte 63,078 376 63,454
 Wallis and Futuna 258,269 264 258,533
 Saint-Martin 1,000 53 1,053
 Saint-Barthélemy 4,000 21 4,021
 New Caledonia 1,422,543 18,575 1,441,118
 Clipperton Island 431,263 6 431,269
Crozet Islands 574,558 352 574,910
Kerguelen Islands 567,732 7,215 574,947
Saint Paul and Amsterdam Islands 509,015 66 509,081
Scattered islands in the Indian Ocean 352,117 44 352,161
Tromelin Island 270,455 1 270,456
Total 10,160,835 675,417 12,366,417

Greece

Greece has claimed an exclusive economic zone, as it is entitled to do so, as per UNCLOS 1982 as well as customary international law.[30]

According to published maps, the Israel government has recognized the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) of Greece and Cyprus. They describe the course of the gas pipeline which will transfer gas produced by American Νoble Εnergy Ltd. from the Leviathan reservoir to Europe, through an undersea pipeline crossing Greece. The gas pipeline should traverse the sea area, which according to international law, is part of the Greek EEZ. By this proposal, Israel recognizes the Greek EEZ in the area and offers an advantage that Greece can use during negotiation procedures to support its claims on the area. In practice, this cooperation will set up a powerful energy coalition between Greece, Cyprus and Israel. The mining and operating part will be undertaken by an American company.[31] “The substance of the issue is that in an effort to protect and secure vital Israeli interests in the Mediterranean Sea, Israel has been left with no choice other than to officially delimit its maritime borders”.[32]

India

India‘s exclusive economic zones

India is currently seeking to extend its EEZ to 350 miles.[33]

Israel

In 2010, an agreement was signed with Cyprus concerning the limit of territorial waters between Israel and Cyprus at the maritime halfway point, a clarification essential for safeguarding Israel’s rights to oil and underwater gas reservoirs. The agreement was signed in Nicosia by Israeli Infrastructure Minister Uzi Landau and the Cypriot Foreign Minister Markos Kyprianou. The two countries agreed to cooperate in the development of any cross border resources discovered, and to negotiate an agreement on dividing joint resources.

Japan

Japan‘s exclusive economic zones:

  Japan’s EEZ
  Joint regime with Republic of Korea
  EEZ claimed by Japan, disputed by others

Japan has disputes over its EEZ boundaries with all its Asian neighbors (Russia, Republic of KoreaChina and Taiwan). The above, and relevant maps at the Sea Around Us Project[34][35] both indicate Japan’s claimed boundaries, and do not take into account neighboring powers’ claims.

Japan also refers to various categories of “shipping area” – Smooth Water Area, Coasting Area, Major or Greater Coasting Area, Ocean Going Area – but it is unclear whether these are intended to have any territorial or economic implications.

Mexico

Exclusive economic zone of Mexico

Mexico‘s exclusive economic zones comprise a total surface area of 3,144,295 km2, and places Mexico among the countries with the largest areas in the world.[36] This puts Mexico’s total territory as 5,153,735 km2.

New Zealand

Exclusive economic zones of the Realm of New Zealand, including the Ross Dependency (shaded)

New Zealand‘s EEZ covers 4,083,744 km2 (1,576,742 sq mi),[37][38] which is approximately fifteen times the land area of the country. Sources vary significantly on the size of New Zealand’s EEZ; for example, a recent government publication gave the area as roughly 4,300,000 km2.[39] These figures are for the EEZ of New Zealand proper, and do not include the EEZs of other territories in the Realm of New Zealand (Tokelau, Niue, the Cook Islands and the Ross Dependency).

Norway

Norway‘s exclusive economic zones, including dependent territory Bouvet Island

Norway has a large exclusive economic zone of 819 620 km2 around its coast. The country has a fishing zone of 1,878,953 km2, including fishing zones around Svalbard and Jan Mayen.[40]

In April 2009, the United Nations Commission for the Limits of the Continental Shelf approved Norway’s claim to an additional 235,000 square kilometres of continental shelf. The commission found that Norway and Russia both had valid claims over a portion of shelf in the Barents Sea.[41]

Region EEZ & TW Area (km2) Land area Total
Mainland 1 273 482 323 802 1 597 284
Svalbard 402 574 61 002 463 576
Jan Mayen 273 118 373 273 491
Bouvet Island 436 004 49 436 053
Total 2 385 178 385 226 2 770 404

Philippines

The exclusive economic zone of the Philippines shown in the lighter blue shade, with Archepelagic Waters in the darkest blue

The Philippines‘ EEZ covers 2,263,816 km2[42]

Poland

The Polish EEZ covers the area of 30,533 km2 (11,789 sq mi) within the Baltic Sea.[43]

Portugal

Portugal‘s Exclusive Economic Zones plus submitted Extended Continental Shelf to the UN[44]

Portugal has the 20th largest EEZ in the world. Presently, it is divided in three non-contiguous sub-zones:

Portugal submitted a claim to extend its jurisdiction over additional 2.15 million square kilometers of the neighboring continental shelf in May 2009,[45] resulting in an area with a total of more than 3,877,408 km2. The submission, as well as a detailed map, can be found in the Task Group for the extension of the Continental Shelf website.

Spain disputes the EEZ’s southern border, maintaining that it should be drawn halfway between Madeira and the Canary Islands. But Portugal exercises sovereignty over the Savage Islands, a small archipelago north of the Canaries, claiming an EEZ border further south. Spain objects, arguing that the Savage Islands do not have a separate continental shelf,[46] citing article 121 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.[47]

Russia

Russia‘s exclusive economic zone

  • Kaliningrad (Baltic Sea) – 11,634
  • St. Petersburg (Baltic Sea) – 12,759
  • Barents Sea – 1,308,140
  • Black Sea (without the Crimean EEZ) – 66,854
  • Pacific – 3,419,202
  • Siberia – 3,277,292
  • Total – 8,095,881 km2[48]

Somalia

Somalia‘s exclusive economic zone

  • 825,052 km2

South Africa

South Africa‘s maritime zones, including the exclusive economic zone

South Africa‘s EEZ includes both that next to the African mainland and that around the Prince Edward Islands, totalling 1,535,538 km2.[49]

  • Mainland – 1,068,659 km2
  • Prince Edward islands – 466,879 km2

South Korea

South Korean exclusive economic zone:

  Korean EEZ
  EEZ claimed by Republic of Korea, disputed by Japan
  Joint regime with Japan

Area: 300,851 (225,214) km2

United Kingdom

The exclusive economic zones of the United Kingdom in blue, including the British Overseas Territories and the Crown Dependencies. The British claim in Antarctica is shown in shaded blue.[50]

The United Kingdom’s exclusive economic zone is the fifth largest in the world at 6,805,586 square km. It comprises the exclusive economic zones surrounding the United Kingdom,[51] the Crown Dependencies, and the British Overseas Territories. The figure does not include the EEZ of the British Antarctic Territory. The exclusive economic zones associated with the Falkland Islands and South Georgia are disputed by Argentina. The EEZ of the Chagos archipelago also known as the British Indian Ocean Territory is also disputed with Mauritius which considers the EEZ as part of its territory.

Only the United Kingdom and Gibraltar are part of the EU. The Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and the remaining overseas territories (that is, all except Gibraltar) are not part of the EU. The United Kingdom has not as yet claimed its rights with regards to Gibraltar or the Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus.

Areas of EEZs of the UK, crown dependencies and overseas territories[49]
Territory km2 sq mi Notes
United Kingdom 773,676 298,718 includes Rockall and the Isle of Man
Anguilla 92,178 35,590
Ascension Island 441,658 170,525
Bermuda 450,370 173,890
British Indian Ocean Territory 638,568 246,552 disputed with Mauritius
British Virgin Islands 80,117 30,933
Cayman Islands 119,137 45,999
Channel Islands 11,658 4,501
Falkland Islands 550,872 212,693 disputed with Argentina
Gibraltar 426 164 disputed with Spain
Montserrat 7,582 2,927
Pitcairn Island 836,108 322,823
Saint Helena 444,916 171,783
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands 1,449,532 559,667 disputed with Argentina
Tristan da Cunha archipelago† 754,720 291,400
Turks and Caicos Islands 154,068 59,486
Total 6,805,586 2,627,651

†Part of the overseas territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, which together has an EEZ of 1,641,294 square km.

United States

Exclusive economic zones of the United States, including insular areas

The United States’ exclusive economic zone is the second largest in the world, covering 11,351,000 km2. Areas of its EEZ are located in three oceans, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea.

The sizes of the components of the US EEZ/territorial seas are (in decreasing size):[52]

Total: 11,351,000 km2 (4,383,000 sq mi)

Rankings by area

This list includes dependent territories within their sovereign states (including uninhabited territories), but does not include claims on Antarctica. EEZ+TIA is exclusive economic zone (EEZ) plus total internal area (TIA) which includes land and internal waters.

Rank Country EEZ km2[49] Shelf km2 EEZ+TIA km2
1  France 11,691,000 389,422 12,366,417
2  United States 11,351,000 2,193,526 21,814,306
3  Australia 8,505,348 2,194,008 16,197,464
4  Russia 7,566,673 3,817,843 24,664,915
5  United Kingdom 6,805,586 722,891 7,048,486
6  Indonesia 6,159,032 2,039,381 8,063,601
7  Canada 5,599,077 2,644,795 15,607,077
8  Japan 4,479,388 454,976 4,857,318
9  New Zealand 4,083,744 277,610 4,352,424
10  Chile 3,681,989 252,947 4,431,381
11  Brazil 3,660,955 774,563 12,175,832
12  Kiribati 3,441,810 7,523 3,442,536
13  Mexico 3,269,386 419,102 5,141,968
14  Federated States of Micronesia 2,996,419 19,403 2,997,121
15  Denmark 2,551,238 495,657 4,761,811
16  Papua New Guinea 2,402,288 191,256 2,865,128
17  Norway 2,385,178 434,020 2,770,404
18  India 2,305,143 402,996 5,592,406
19  Marshall Islands 1,990,530 18,411 1,990,711
20  Portugal 1,727,408 28,000 1,819,498
21  Philippines 1,590,780 272,921 1,890,780
22  Solomon Islands 1,589,477 36,282 1,618,373
23  South Africa 1,535,538 156,337 2,756,575
24  Seychelles 1,336,559 39,063 1,337,014
25  Mauritius 1,284,997 29,061 1,287,037
26  Fiji 1,282,978 47,705 1,301,250
27  Madagascar 1,225,259 101,505 1,812,300
28  Argentina 1,159,063 856,346 3,939,463[53]
29  Ecuador 1,077,231 41,034 1,333,600
30  Spain 1,039,233 77,920 1,545,225
31  Maldives 923,322 34,538 923,622
32  Peru 906,454 82,000 2,191,670
33  China 877,019 231,340 10,473,980
34  Somalia 825,052 55,895 1,462,709
35  Colombia 808,158 53,691 1,949,906
36  Cape Verde 800,561 5,591 804,594
37  Iceland 751,345 108,015 854,345
38  Tuvalu 749,790 3,575 749,816
39  Vanuatu 663,251 11,483 675,440
40  Tonga 659,558 8,517 660,305
41  Bahamas 654,715 106,323 668,658
42  Palau 603,978 2,837 604,437
43  Mozambique 578,986 94,212 1,380,576
44  Morocco 575,230 115,157 1,287,780
45  Costa Rica 574,725 19,585 625,825
46  Namibia 564,748 86,698 1,388,864
47  Yemen 552,669 59,229 1,080,637
48  Italy 541,915 116,834 843,251
49  Oman 533,180 59,071 842,680
50  Myanmar 532,775 220,332 1,209,353
51  Sri Lanka 532,619 32,453 598,229
52  Angola 518,433 48,092 1,765,133
53  Greece 505,572 81,451 637,529
54  South Korea 475,469 292,522 575,469
55  Venezuela 471,507 98,500 1,387,950
56  Vietnam 417,663 365,198 748,875
57  Ireland 410,310 139,935 480,583
58  Libya 351,589 64,763 2,111,129
59  Cuba 350,751 61,525 460,637
60  Panama 335,646 53,404 411,163
61  Malaysia 334,671 323,412 665,474
62  Nauru 308,480 41 308,501
63  Equatorial Guinea 303,509 7,820 331,560
64  Thailand 299,397 230,063 812,517
65  Pakistan 290,000 51,383 1,117,911
66  Egypt 263,451 61,591 1,265,451
67  Turkey 261,654 56,093 1,045,216
68  Jamaica 258,137 9,802 269,128
69  Dominican Republic 255,898 10,738 304,569
70  Liberia 249,734 17,715 361,103
71  Honduras 249,542 68,718 362,034
72  Tanzania 241,888 25,611 1,186,975
73  Ghana 235,349 22,502 473,888
74  Saudi Arabia 228,633 107,249 2,378,323
75  Nigeria 217,313 42,285 1,141,081
76  Sierra Leone 215,611 28,625 287,351
77  Gabon 202,790 35,020 470,458
78  Barbados 186,898 426 187,328
79  Côte d’Ivoire 176,254 10,175 498,717
80  Iran 168,718 118,693 1,797,468
81  Mauritania 165,338 31,662 1,190,858
82  Comoros 163,752 1,526 165,987
83  Sweden 160,885 154,604 602,255
84  Senegal 158,861 23,092 355,583
85  Netherlands 154,011 77,246 192,345
85  Ukraine 147,318 79,142 750,818
86  Uruguay 142,166 75,327 318,381
87  Guyana 137,765 50,578 352,734
88  North Korea 132,826 54,566 253,364
89  São Tomé and Príncipe 131,397 1,902 132,361
90  Samoa 127,950 2,087 130,781
91  Suriname 127,772 53,631 291,592
92  Haiti 126,760 6,683 154,510
93  Algeria 126,353 9,985 2,508,094
94  Nicaragua 123,881 70,874 254,254
95  Guinea-Bissau 123,725 39,339 159,850
96  Kenya 116,942 11,073 697,309
97  Guatemala 114,170 14,422 223,059
98  Antigua and Barbuda 110,089 4,128 110,531
99  Tunisia 101,857 67,126 265,467
100  Cyprus 98,707 4,042 107,958
101  El Salvador 90,962 16,852 112,003
102  Finland 87,171 85,109 425,590
103  Bangladesh 86,392 66,438 230,390
104  Taiwan 83,231 43,016 119,419
105  Eritrea 77,728 61,817 195,328
106  Trinidad and Tobago 74,199 25,284 79,329
107  East Timor 70,326 25,648 85,200
108  Sudan 68,148 19,827 1,954,216
109  Cambodia 62,515 62,515 243,550
110  Guinea 59,426 44,755 305,283
111  Croatia 59,032 50,277 115,626
112  United Arab Emirates 58,218 57,474 141,818
113  Germany 57,485 57,485 414,599
114  Malta 54,823 5,301 55,139
115  Estonia 36,992 36,992 82,219
116  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 36,302 1,561 36,691
117  Belize 35,351 13,178 58,317
118  Bulgaria 34,307 10,426 145,186
119  Benin 33,221 2,721 145,843
120  Qatar 31,590 31,590 43,176
121  Congo, Republic of the 31,017 7,982 373,017
122  Poland 29,797 29,797 342,482
123  Dominica 28,985 659 29,736
124  Latvia 28,452 27,772 93,011
125  Grenada 27,426 2,237 27,770
126  Israel 26,352 3,745 48,424
127  Romania 23,627 19,303 262,018
128  Gambia 23,112 5,581 34,407
129  Georgia 21,946 3,243 91,646
130  Lebanon 19,516 1,067 29,968
131  Cameroon 16,547 11,420 491,989
132  Saint Lucia 15,617 544 16,156
133  Albania 13,691 6,979 42,439
134  Togo 12,045 1,265 68,830
135  Kuwait 11,026 11,026 28,844
136  Syria 10,503 1,085 195,683
137  Bahrain 10,225 10,225 10,975
138  Brunei 10,090 8,509 15,855
139  Saint Kitts and Nevis 9,974 653 10,235
140  Montenegro 7,745 3,896 21,557
141  Djibouti 7,459 3,187 30,659
142  Lithuania 7,031 7,031 72,331
143  Belgium 3,447 3,447 33,975
144  Democratic Republic of the Congo 1,606 1,593 2,346,464
145  Singapore 1,067 1,067 1,772
146  Iraq 771 771 439,088
147  Monaco 288 2 290
148  Palestine 256 256 6,276
149  Slovenia 220 220 20,493
150  Jordan 166 59 89,508
151  Bosnia and Herzegovina 50 50 51,259
152  Kazakhstan 2,724,900
153  Mongolia 1,564,100
154  Chad 1,284,000
155  Niger 1,267,000
156  Mali 1,240,192
157  Ethiopia 1,104,300
158  Bolivia 1,098,581
159  Zambia 752,612
160  Afghanistan 652,090
161  Central African Republic 622,984
162  South Sudan 619,745
163  Botswana 582,000
164  Turkmenistan 488,100
165  Uzbekistan 447,400
166  Paraguay 406,752
167  Zimbabwe 390,757
168  Burkina Faso 274,222
169  Uganda 241,038
170  Laos 236,800
171  Belarus 207,600
172  Kyrgyzstan 199,951
173    Nepal 147,181
174  Tajikistan 143,100
175  Malawi 118,484
176  Hungary 93,028
177  Azerbaijan 86,600
178  Austria 83,871
179  Czech Republic 78,867
180  Serbia 77,474
181  Slovakia 49,035
182   Switzerland 41,284
183  Bhutan 38,394
184  Moldova 33,846
185  Lesotho 30,355
186  Armenia 29,743
187  Burundi 27,834
188  Rwanda 26,338
189  Macedonia 25,713
190  Swaziland 17,364
191  Kosovo[a] 10,887
192  Luxembourg 2,586
193  Andorra 468
194  Liechtenstein 160
195  San Marino 61
196   Vatican City 0.44
Total  United Nations 137,159,222 25,103,204 274,004,586

See also

Notes and references

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

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The Pronk Pops Show 1135, September 5, 2018, Story 1: Impressive Testimony of Soon To Be Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh — Resistance Is Futile — Videos — Story 2: Woodward New Blistering Bombshell Book — Fear: Trump in The White House — Progressive Propaganda Attacking Trump — “A Work of Fiction” — Videos — Story 3: “Gutless” Arrogant Anonymous New York Times Op-Ed — Videos —

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Story 1: Impressive Testimony of Soon To Be Supreme Court Justice Bret Kavanaugh — Resistance Is Futile — Videos

See the source image

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh gives opening statement

Sen. Cruz Questions Judge Kavanaugh at the Second Day of Hearings – September 5, 2018

Kavanaugh Stresses Independence At SCOTUS Confirmation Hearing

WATCH: Brett Kavanaugh says he doesn’t know what role Federalist Society played in nomination

Mueller probe dominates Day 2 of Supreme Court hearing

Exchange between Sen. Harris and Judge Kavanaugh on Mueller Investigation (C-SPAN)

Kavanaugh uses ‘precedent’ to deflect Sen. Booker’s questions on race

On Second Amendment, Kavanaugh says he must side with Supreme Court regardless of personal opinion

Kavanaugh fields questions on abortion, presidential power on Day 2 of confirmation hearings

Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing

Feinstein: There is frustration over this nomination process

PBS NewsHour full episode Sept. 04, 2018

DAY 1: Brett Kavanaugh Senate Confirmation Hearing For Supreme Court Justice – FULL COVERAGE

Sanders: Kavanaugh hearing an embarrassment for Democrats

Judge Napolitano on Kavanaugh: Democrats want to delay this

Republicans have the votes to confirm Kavanaugh: Barbara Smith

Sen Richard Blumenthal Grills Brett Kavanaugh At Confirmation Hearing 9/5/18

Watch Live: Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing | Day 2

The Latest: Kavanaugh evades issue of presidential subpoena

The Latest on the Senate hearings on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh (all times local):

11:20 a.m.

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is refusing to say whether a president can be forced to testify in a criminal case, calling it a hypothetical.

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, for the second day of his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, for the second day of his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The topic is front-and-center at Kavanaugh’s hearing because the man who nominated him, President Donald Trump, could face a subpoena in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

The top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, asked Kavanaugh whether he thinks a sitting president can “be required to respond to a subpoena.”

Kavanaugh responded: “I can’t give you an answer on that hypothetical question.”

The Supreme Court has never ruled on a presidential subpoena.

President Bill Clinton was subpoenaed by independent counsel Kenneth Starr in 1998. Clinton eventually agreed to testify voluntarily and the subpoena was withdrawn.

Kavanaugh worked for Starr.

___

11 a.m.

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh says a 1973 Supreme Court decision that established a constitutional right to an abortion is an “important precedent” that has “been reaffirmed many times.”

Kavanaugh was asked about the Roe v. Wade ruling by Democrat Dianne Feinstein of California. He said the decision has “been reaffirmed many times over the past 45 years.” And he noted that a 1992 decision of the court called Planned Parenthood v. Casey didn’t just reaffirm Roe v. Wade in passing. He said that decision becomes “precedent on precedent.”

Kavanaugh compared the Roe decision to another case, Miranda v. Arizona, which requires law enforcement to tell suspects their rights. Kavanaugh noted that former Chief Justice William Rehnquist had been a critic of the Miranda decision but later upheld it as precedent.

___

10:30 a.m.

Republicans are invoking Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to make the case that Brett Kavanaugh should decline to say how he might vote on any particular case.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley referred to the so-called “Ginsburg standard” Wednesday during the second day of Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings.

Ginsburg said during her 1993 confirmation hearing that it would be wrong for her to “preview in this legislative chamber how I would cast my vote on questions the Supreme Court may be called upon to decide.”

As Kavanaugh put it, quoting Ginsburg, that means “no hints, no forecasts, no previews.”

Despite her statement, Ginsburg was questioned extensively about abortion during her hearing. She told lawmakers, “It is essential to woman’s equality with man that she be the decision maker.”

___

10:20 a.m.

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is pointing to a decision where he ruled for an associate of Osama bin Laden as evidence of his independence as judge.

Asked by Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley to discuss what judicial independence means to him, Kavanaugh pointed to his opinion in a case involving Salim Ahmed Hamdan, who was bin Laden’s former chauffeur. Hamdan challenged his detention at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Kavanaugh told senators that “you’ll never have a nominee who’s ruled for a more unpopular defendant.” Kavanaugh says judges don’t make decisions based on who people are, but “whether they have the law on their side.”

Hamdan was released from Guantanamo before the appeals court ruling that vacated his conviction.

___

9:55 a.m.

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh says he believes the first thing that makes a good judge is “independence.”

Kavanaugh is answering questions Wednesday in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. It’s his first day answering questions from lawmakers.

Committee chairman Chuck Grassley began the day by asking Kavanaugh to explain what he thinks makes a good judge.

Kavanaugh responded that he thinks “the first quality of a good judge in our constitutional system is independence.” He said being a good judge also requires paying attention to the words of the Constitution and the words of laws, “not doing what I want to do.”

The judge said he wants parties to leave oral arguments in his cases believing he had an “open mind, he gave me a fair shake.”

9:50 a.m.

Demonstrators are again disrupting the hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley attempted to gavel in the second day of hearings on Wednesday when shouting protesters began disrupting the hearings. Grassley said 70 people were arrested during the first day of hearings the day before.

Kavanaugh will be answering questions from senators all day. Democratic senators are expected to press for his views on issues like abortion, guns and executive power.

President Donald Trump nominated the 53-year-old appellate judge in July to fill the seat of retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.

___

9:20 a.m.

Liberal and progressive groups are pressuring Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer to unify Democrats against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

A letter sent to Schumer on the second day of hearings for President Donald Trump’s court pick says bluntly: “You are failing us.”

Democrats face a difficult climb trying to block Kavanaugh’s confirmation. If nearly all Republicans back Kavanaugh, as is expected, several Democrats facing tough re-election races may vote to confirm him.

But the groups say Democrats in states like West Virginia, North Dakota, Indiana, Missouri, Montana and Alabama have nothing to fear from voting against Kavanaugh. They say voters in those states “care deeply” about the issues before the court and “will reward a principled vote.”

The Senate’s questioning of Kavanaugh is set to begin Wednesday morning.

___

4:20 a.m.

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh touted the importance of an independent judiciary as his confirmation hearings began with strident Democratic criticism that he would be President Donald Trump’s man on the high court.

On Wednesday, Kavanaugh can expect to spend most of the day in the hot seat, sparring with Democratic senators over abortion, guns, executive power and other high-profile issues.

A long day of questioning awaits the 53-year-old appellate judge, whom Trump nominated in July to fill the seat of retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. The change could make the court more conservative on a range of issues.

Barring a surprise, Republicans appear on track to confirm Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, perhaps in time for the first day of the new term on Oct. 1.

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, arrives before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, for the second day of his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

A protester against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is removed from his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, with daughter Liza, departs his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018. They are followed by his wife Ashley and older daughter Margaret. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, with daughter Liza, departs his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018. They are followed by his wife Ashley and older daughter Margaret. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh's wife Ashley, left, watches as Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, right, becomes emotional as he gives his opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, to begin his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh’s wife Ashley, left, watches as Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, right, becomes emotional as he gives his opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, to begin his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, a federal appeals court judge, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, for the second day of his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

A protester against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is removed from his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

A protester against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is removed from his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Trump on Woodward book: A work of fiction

Trump denies bombshell claims in Bob Woodward’s new book

Sarah Sanders discredits Woodward book on Trump

Trump fires back at claims in Bob Woodward’s book

Mike Huckabee reacts to Bob Woodward’s book about Trump

Bob Woodward Book A ‘Devastating’ Portrait Of President Donald Trump WH | Morning Joe | MSNBC

Story 3: “Gutless” Arrogant Anonymous New York Times Op-Ed — Videos

President Donald Trump Reacts To Anonymous New York Times Op-Ed | NBC News

Mitch McConnell on ‘resistance’ op-ed, Kavanaugh hearings

Brit Hume: Op-ed may be disloyal, but is in no way treason

Graham defends Trump: In my world, most don’t listen to the NYT

Senior administration official blasts Trump in op-ed

Trump’s own officials see him as ‘detrimental,’ explosive but anonymous essay claims

Anonymous Trump official claims to be part of ‘resistance’

11 Warning Signs of Gaslighting

Gaslighting is a manipulation tactic used to gain power. And it works too well.

Posted Jan 22, 2017

Stephanie A. Sarkis Ph.D.

Gaslighting is a tactic in which a person or entity, in order to gain more power, makes a victim question their reality. It works much better than you may think. Anyone is susceptible to gaslighting, and it is a common technique of abusers, dictators, narcissists, and cult leaders. It is done slowly, so the victim doesn’t realize how much they’ve been brainwashed. For example, in the movie Gaslight (1944), a man manipulates his wife to the point where she thinks she is losing her mind.

People who gaslight typically use the following techniques:

1. They tell blatant lies.

You know it’s an outright lie. Yet they are telling you this lie with a straight face. Why are they so blatant? Because they’re setting up a precedent. Once they tell you a huge lie, you’re not sure if anything they say is true. Keeping you unsteady and off-kilter is the goal.

2. They deny they ever said something, even though you have proof. 

You know they said they would do something; you know you heard it. But they out and out deny it. It makes you start questioning your reality—maybe they never said that thing. And the more they do this, the more you question your reality and start accepting theirs.

3. They use what is near and dear to you as ammunition. 

They know how important your kids are to you, and they know how important your identity is to you. So those may be one of the first things they attack. If you have kids, they tell you that you should not have had those children. They will tell you’d be a worthy person if only you didn’t have a long list of negative traits. They attack the foundation of your being.

4. They wear you down over time.

This is one of the insidious things about gaslighting—it is done gradually, over time. A lie here, a lie there, a snide comment every so often…and then it starts ramping up. Even the brightest, most self-aware people can be sucked into gaslighting—it is that effective. It’s the “frog in the frying pan” analogy: The heat is turned up slowly, so the frog never realizes what’s happening to it.

5. Their actions do not match their words.

When dealing with a person or entity that gaslights, look at what they are doing rather than what they are sayingWhat they are saying means nothing; it is just talk. What they are doing is the issue.

6. They throw in positive reinforcement to confuse you. 

This person or entity that is cutting you down, telling you that you don’t have value, is now praising you for something you did. This adds an additional sense of uneasiness. You think, “Well maybe they aren’t so bad.” Yes, they are. This is a calculated attempt to keep you off-kilter—and again, to question your reality. Also look at what you were praised for; it is probably something that served the gaslighter.

Gaslighters know that people like having a sense of stability and normalcy. Their goal is to uproot this and make you constantly question everything. And humans’ natural tendency is to look to the person or entity that will help you feel more stable—and that happens to be the gaslighter.

8. They project.

They are a drug user or a cheater, yet they are constantly accusing you of that. This is done so often that you start trying to defend yourself, and are distracted from the gaslighter’s own behavior.

9. They try to align people against you.

Gaslighters are masters at manipulating and finding the people they know will stand by them no matter what—and they use these people against you. They will make comments such as, “This person knows that you’re not right,” or “This person knows you’re useless too.” Keep in mind it does not mean that these people actually said these things. A gaslighter is a constant liar. When the gaslighter uses this tactic it makes you feel like you don’t know who to trust or turn to—and that leads you right back to the gaslighter. And that’s exactly what they want: Isolation gives them more control.

10. They tell you or others that you are crazy.

This is one of the most effective tools of the gaslighter, because it’s dismissive. The gaslighter knows if they question your sanity, people will not believe you when you tell them the gaslighter is abusive or out-of-control. It’s a master technique.

11. They tell you everyone else is a liar.

By telling you that everyone else (your family, the media) is a liar, it again makes you question your reality. You’ve never known someone with the audacity to do this, so they must be telling the truth, right? No. It’s a manipulation technique. It makes people turn to the gaslighter for the “correct” information—which isn’t correct information at all.

The more you are aware of these techniques, the quicker you can identify them and avoid falling into the gaslighter’s trap.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/here-there-and-everywhere/201701/11-warning-signs-gaslighting

Are Gaslighters Aware of What They Do?

Do gaslighters know they’re manipulative, or do they do it without realizing it?

Posted Jan 30, 2017

Stephanie A. Sarkis Ph.D.

Since posting my article Gaslighting: Know It to Identify It and Protect YourselfI’ve received emails asking whether people who gaslight actually know that they are doing it. To review: Gaslighting is a pattern of manipulation tactics used by abusers, narcissists, dictators, and cult leaders to gain control over a person or people. The goal is to make the victim or victims question their own reality and depend on the gaslighter. So, do gaslighters know they’re doing it?

It depends on the gaslighter.

Some people or entities that gaslight do, in fact, realize they are doing it: It is a strategy they have studied—and their sources may surprise you. Cult leader Charles Manson read How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie (2010) to learn how to manipulate his followers (Guinn, 2014). Guinn writes that Manson particularly focused on Chapter 7, which included this advice: “Let the other fellow feel that the idea is his.” And herein lies one difference between people who pathologically gaslight and the general population—the vast majority of the thousands who have read Carnegie’s book have not led lives of violence, abuse, and destruction.

One way to protect yourself from being gaslighted, therefore, is to educate yourself about gaslighters’ behaviors. The book 48 Laws of Power (Greene, 2000) details the characteristics and tactics some historical figures have practiced, including steps they have taken to manipulate others. And Robert Cialdini’s Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion (2006) explains through research how easily people can be manipulated.

Some gaslighters may have learned it from others—in many cases, their own parents. If a parent lives with addiction or other mental health issues, gaslighting may be used to manipulate a child into keeping quiet about abuse and/or addiction. Gaslighting may be used by a parent in order to alienate the child from the other parent. For example, in parental alienation, one parent may depict the other as a “deadbeat” and tell a child about the other parent’s “transgressions” in order for the child to align with the “reporting” parent and see him or her as the hero. But in order to look like the hero, the gaslighter must create a distinct enemy. This doesn’t mean that people who are children of gaslighters will adopt gaslighting behavior—for many, in fact, such an upbringing teaches them exactly what not to do when raising their own children.

In the case of a person who has a personality disorder such as antisocial personality disorder, they are born with an insatiable need to control others and a deep-seated anxiety.

Others gaslight in order to feel some sense of control in their own lives by making others depend on them. Gaslighting can also be part of an authoritarian personality. A person with an authoritarian personality tends to think in absolutes: Things are 100 percent right or 100 percent wrong. When a gaslighter thinks that they are not the problem and everyone else is, this is called having an ego-syntonic personality. It can be very difficult to get ego-syntonic gaslighters into treatment; they believe nothing is wrong with them. A gaslighting spouse or partner may either refuse to go to therapy, or if they do attend with you, they may tell the therapist that you are the problem. If the therapist recommends that the gaslighter changes a behavior, the gaslighter will label the therapist as incompetent. Even in therapy, a gaslighter may not truly be aware of, or may refuse to acknowledge that their behavior is the problem.

If a gaslighter is not aware of their manipulative behavior, that does not make it acceptable—it is still pathological, and it is still their responsibility. For gaslighters who have read up on this behavior or were taught it, of course, the same rule applies.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/here-there-and-everywhere/201701/are-gaslighters-aware-what-they-do

 

 

Relax, President Trump: New York Times Has History of Exaggerating Seniority of Anonymous Officials

Phelim McAleer
|
Posted: Sep 06, 2018 6:34 AM
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not represent the views of Townhall.com.

President Trump should probably call off the hunt for the “senior official in the…administration” who the New York Times is claiming wrote a damning op-ed for the newspaper.

Apparently the “senior official” claims to be part of a group of White House staff trying to thwart the president’s agenda from within. He also claims they seriously considered trying to depose the president using the 25th amendment of the Constitution.

Serious stuff. But President Trump should relax and remember it is the New York Times after all. The paper has a scandalous history of lying about the seniority of officials it quotes anonymously – especially when that source parrots their agenda.

A few years back they were caught red-handed deceiving their readers in such a way.

In a lengthy anti-fracking article they claimed that senior industry experts and insiders believed the industry to be little more than a “Ponzi scheme” … “set up for failure”.

They even had the emails from a series of senior insiders where these doubts were expressed.

According to the New York Times, one “energy analyst” wrote, “Am I just totally crazy, or does it seem like everyone and their mothers are endorsing shale gas without getting a really good understanding of the economics at the business level?”

Another “federal analyst” said in an industry email, “It seems that science is pointing in one direction and industry PR is pointing in another.”

Well unfortunately for the New York Times, the emails were from the Energy Information Agency – a government organization – so this meant Senate investigators were able to find the original emails and work out the identity of all these different senior experts.  It turns out the federal analyst, the energy analyst and the officer turned out to be the same person who was actually an intern when he wrote the first email and in an entry level position when he wrote the other comments. Yes, that’s right, the “Paper of Record” misrepresented an intern/junior employee as a senior official to push an agenda.

Was the New York Times embarrassed when their deception was uncovered? The Senate investigation did attract the attention of the New York Times Public Editor Arthur S Brisbane. “Can an intern be an “official”? It doesn’t sound right to me,”  he stated.

Well it sounded fine to the New York Times editorial board. They stood by their mislabelling of the intern/low level employees as a senior official. They later decided they didn’t want their stories to be second guessed in their own newspaper so they ended the role of public editor in the newspaper. And the reporter who misrepresented the intern, well, he was promoted. Ian Urbina is now a New York Times “investigative reporter based in Washington.” Maybe part of that investigation involved finding someone to write anti-Trump anonymous op/eds posing as a  “senior official in the Trump administration.” President Trump is probably wondering who the anonymous official is. Perhaps given the New York Times’s history of dissembling in this regard he should take his eyes off the cabinet table and wander down to whatever part of the White House holds the interns.

Phelim McAleer is a journalist and film maker. He  produced the movie Gosnell – The Trial of America’s Most Prolific Serial Killer which opens nationwide on October 12th. www.GosnellMovie.com

https://townhall.com/columnists/phelimmcaleer/2018/09/06/relax-president-trump-new-york-times-has-history-of-exaggerating-seniority-of-anonymous-officials-n2516340

 

I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration

I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.

The Times today is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op-Ed essay. We have done so at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure. We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers. We invite you to submit a question about the essay or our vetting process here.


President Trump is facing a test to his presidency unlike any faced by a modern American leader.

It’s not just that the special counsel looms large. Or that the country is bitterly divided over Mr. Trump’s leadership. Or even that his party might well lose the House to an opposition hellbent on his downfall.

The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.

I would know. I am one of them.

To be clear, ours is not the popular “resistance” of the left. We want the administration to succeed and think that many of its policies have already made America safer and more prosperous.

But we believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.

That is why many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump’s more misguided impulses until he is out of office.

The root of the problem is the president’s amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.

Although he was elected as a Republican, the president shows little affinity for ideals long espoused by conservatives: free minds, free markets and free people. At best, he has invoked these ideals in scripted settings. At worst, he has attacked them outright.

In addition to his mass-marketing of the notion that the press is the “enemy of the people,” President Trump’s impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic.

Don’t get me wrong. There are bright spots that the near-ceaseless negative coverage of the administration fails to capture: effective deregulation, historic tax reform, a more robust military and more.

But these successes have come despite — not because of — the president’s leadership style, which is impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective.

From the White House to executive branch departments and agencies, senior officials will privately admit their daily disbelief at the commander in chief’s comments and actions. Most are working to insulate their operations from his whims.

Meetings with him veer off topic and off the rails, he engages in repetitive rants, and his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back.

“There is literally no telling whether he might change his mind from one minute to the next,” a top official complained to me recently, exasperated by an Oval Office meeting at which the president flip-flopped on a major policy decision he’d made only a week earlier.

The erratic behavior would be more concerning if it weren’t for unsung heroes in and around the White House. Some of his aides have been cast as villains by the media. But in private, they have gone to great lengths to keep bad decisions contained to the West Wing, though they are clearly not always successful.

It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room. We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t.

The result is a two-track presidency.

Take foreign policy: In public and in private, President Trump shows a preference for autocrats and dictators, such as President Vladimir Putin of Russia and North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, and displays little genuine appreciation for the ties that bind us to allied, like-minded nations.

Astute observers have noted, though, that the rest of the administration is operating on another track, one where countries like Russia are called out for meddling and punished accordingly, and where allies around the world are engaged as peers rather than ridiculed as rivals.

On Russia, for instance, the president was reluctant to expel so many of Mr. Putin’s spies as punishment for the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. He complained for weeks about senior staff members letting him get boxed into further confrontation with Russia, and he expressed frustration that the United States continued to impose sanctions on the country for its malign behavior. But his national security team knew better — such actions had to be taken, to hold Moscow accountable.

This isn’t the work of the so-called deep state. It’s the work of the steady state.

Given the instability many witnessed, there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which would start a complex process for removing the president. But no one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis. So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until — one way or another — it’s over.

The bigger concern is not what Mr. Trump has done to the presidency but rather what we as a nation have allowed him to do to us. We have sunk low with him and allowed our discourse to be stripped of civility.

Senator John McCain put it best in his farewell letter. All Americans should heed his words and break free of the tribalism trap, with the high aim of uniting through our shared values and love of this great nation.

We may no longer have Senator McCain. But we will always have his example — a lodestar for restoring honor to public life and our national dialogue. Mr. Trump may fear such honorable men, but we should revere them.

There is a quiet resistance within the administration of people choosing to put country first. But the real difference will be made by everyday citizens rising above politics, reaching across the aisle and resolving to shed the labels in favor of a single one: Americans.

The writer is a senior official in the Trump administration.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/05/opinion/trump-white-house-anonymous-resistance.html

 

Trump blasts critical op-ed from anonymous senior official

President Donald Trump listens to Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a striking anonymous broadside, a senior Trump administration official wrote an opinion piece in The New York Times on Wednesday claiming to be part of a group of people “working diligently from within” to impede President Donald Trump’s “worst inclinations” and ill-conceived parts of his agenda.

Trump said it was a “gutless editorial” and “really a disgrace,” and his press secretary called on the official to resign.

Later, Trump tweeted: “TREASON?”

The writer, claiming to be part of the “resistance” to Trump but not from the left, said, “Many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump’s more misguided impulses until he is out of office.” The newspaper described the author of the column only as a senior official in the Trump administration.

“It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room,” the author continued. “We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t.”

A defiant Trump, appearing at an unrelated event at the White House, lashed out at the Times for publishing the op-ed.

“They don’t like Donald Trump and I don’t like them,” he said of the newspaper. The op-ed pages of the newspaper are managed separately from its news department.

The essay immediately triggered a wild guessing game as to the author’s identity on social media, in newsrooms and inside the West Wing, where officials were blindsided by its publication.

And in a blistering statement, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders accused the author of choosing to “deceive” the president by remaining in the administration.

“He is not putting country first, but putting himself and his ego ahead of the will of the American people,” she said. “The coward should do the right thing and resign.”

Sanders also called on the Times to “issue an apology” for publishing the piece, calling it a “pathetic, reckless, and selfish op-ed.”

A “House of Cards”-style plot twist in an already over-the-top administration, Trump allies and political insiders scrambled late Wednesday to unmask the writer.

The text was pulled apart for clues: The writer is identified as an “administration official”; does that mean a person who works outside the White House? The references to Russia and the late Sen. John McCain — do they suggest someone working in national security? Does the writing style sound like someone who worked at a think tank? In a tweet, the Times used the pronoun “he” to refer to the writer; does that rule out all women?

The newspaper later said the tweet referring to “he” had been “drafted by someone who is not aware of the author’s identity, including the gender, so the use of ‘he’ was an error.”

Hotly debated on Twitter was the author’s use of the word “lodestar,” which pops up frequently in speeches by Vice President Mike Pence. Could the anonymous figure be someone in Pence’s orbit? Others argued that the word “lodestar” could have been included to throw people off.

Showing her trademark ability to attract attention, former administration official Omarosa Manigault Newman tweeted that clues about the writer’s identity were in her recently released tell-all book, offering a page number: 330. The reality star writes on that page: “many in this silent army are in his party, his administration, and even in his own family.”

The anonymous author wrote in the Times that where Trump has had successes, they have come “despite — not because of — the president’s leadership style, which is impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective.”

The assertions in the column were largely in line with complaints about Trump’s behavior that have repeatedly been raised by various administration officials, often speaking on condition of anonymity. And they were published a day after the release of details from an explosive new book by longtime journalist Bob Woodward that laid bare concerns among the highest echelon of Trump aides about the president’s judgment.

The writer of the Times op-ed said Trump aides are aware of the president’s faults and “many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations. I would know. I am one of them.”

The writer also alleged “there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment” because of the “instability” witnessed in the president. The 25th Amendment allows the vice president to take over if the commander in chief is “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” It requires that the vice president and a majority of the Cabinet back relieving the president.

The writer added: “This isn’t the work of the so-called deep state. It’s the work of the steady state.”

https://wtop.com/national/2018/09/anonymous-official-cites-trump-amorality-in-ny-times-op-ed/

Reveal yourselves, Trump administration resisters

By Scott Galupo

he self-styled Saviors of the Country need to step forward, identify themselves, and speak plainly, honestly, and loudly about the menace in the White House.

Instead, they continue to hide in the shadows, chirping from the darkness that they’ve got our backs.

As but the latest example: On Wednesday afternoon, The New York Timesmade the highly unorthodox decision of publishing an anonymous essay from “a senior official in the Trump administration,” titling the piece “I am part of the resistance inside the Trump administration.”

[Trump’s] erratic behavior would be more concerning if it weren’t for unsung heroes in and around the White House. Some of his aides have been cast as villains by the media. But in private, they have gone to great lengths to keep bad decisions contained to the West Wing, though they are clearly not always successful.

It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room. We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t. [The New York Times]

Cold comfort indeed. This just isn’t good enough. Resister, reveal yourself.

This same dynamic is at play in the debate over veteran journalist Bob Woodward’s explosive forthcoming book Fear: Trump in the White House. In his surreal conversation with Woodward, the president asked the author if he was “naming names” or “just saying sources” or “people have said.” Woodward replied, “I say, at 2:00 on this day, the following happened, and everyone who’s there, including yourself, is quoted.”

Bob Woodward’s reporting — in terms of raw documentation if not interpretive sophistication — is about as unassailable a product as you’re likely to find in 21st-century media. There is no reason to doubt that current and former senior aides to President Trump have belittled the man’s intelligence, character, and fitness for office.

Additionally, it’s reasonable to believe that everyone quoted in Fear, along with this anonymous op-ed author, came forward with the expectation that their account would be accepted one day as the part of the settled historical record of the Trump presidency. These unidentified officials are speaking to the Bleachers of History, pleading for their good names and reputations, even as they presently assure the mad emperor that he is fully clothed.

Be it through anonymous op-eds, “deep background” interviews, or well-intentioned whispering in journalists’ ears, these resisters within the Trump administration seem intent on delivering a message to the public: Don’t worry. We won’t let President Trump ruin everything. And hopefully history will remember our quiet heroism.

But this isn’t heroism. It’s the sort of cowardly behavior that has produced a cottage industry of Washington sages who declare that it’s a “good thing” that Trump is surrounded by advisers who restrain “his most reckless impulses.”

The following scenario captured by Woodward gives the lie to this self-serving tripe:

[Trump lawyer John] Dowd then explained to [Special Counsel Robert] Mueller and [Mueller deputy attorney James] Quarles why he was trying to keep the president from testifying: “I’m not going to sit there and let him look like an idiot. And you publish that transcript, because everything leaks in Washington, and the guys overseas are going to say, ‘I told you he was an idiot. I told you he was a goddamn dumbbell. What are we dealing with this idiot for?'” [Fear, via The Washington Post]

As Vanity Fair‘s Tina Nguyen notes, “Dowd is practically pleading with Mueller to think of the greater good: If foreign leaders read Trump’s testimony, he suggests, it would be impossible for them not to conclude that he is unfit for office.” If we did not live in a democratic republic; if our constitutional system did not include safety valves for unfit executives; if, indeed, Trump were a Mad King, Dowd’s concerns would be understandable. But we do not. The only plausible explanation for concealing the truth about Trump from the public is that it would cause embarrassment to the president himself and the Republican Party.

America, full stop, would continue along just fine.

If America is indeed being led by a “goddamn dumbbell” who, left to his own devices, would start World War III, then we should hear about it — directly from the mouths of those who uttered the words and believe them to be true. At the very least, if they’re not going to resign on principle from this chaotic joke of an administration, men like John Kelly, James Mattis, and John Dowd should loudly acknowledge the truth that’s in front of everyone’s noses.

To do otherwise is not to “save” the country. It is to save the reputation of Donald J. Trump.

The country does not require the discretion of James Mattis or John Kelly in order to survive.

Trump does.

History will damn them for refusing to recognize the difference.

http://theweek.com/articles/765667/reveal-yourselves-trump-administration-resisters

 

 

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Breaking News, Story 1: Democrats Distracting Destruction Derby at Senate Judiciary Committee For Nomination Hearing of Judge Brett Kavanaugh For Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States —  — Kavanuagh Will Be Confirmed — Resistance Is Futile Lying Lunatic Leftist Losers — Video

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CHAOS: KAVANAUGH HEARINGS KICK OFF WITH BELLIGERENT, SHRIEKING DEMOCRATIC HECKLERS, CALLS TO ADJOURN

Grassley: ‘We will continue as planned’

 

As the chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee, Sen. Grassley (R-Iowa), attempted to call the hearings to order, hecklers almost immediately began heckling the lawmakers.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) promptly interrupted Grassley, demanding a delay to the hearings. Sen. Klobuchar (D-Minn.) then followed up with another call to delay the hearings. The Democratic lawmakers were upset over documents the White House released last night, which they said came too late.

“We cannot possibly move forward,” Sen. Kamala Harris said. Sen. Blumenthal then moved to adjourn the meeting, a call which received a roaring ovation from the hecklers.

Watch above to witness the circus in full swing.

Below is a transcript:

GRASSLEY: “Good morning. I welcome everyone to this confirmation hearing on the nomination of —“
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman.”
GRASSLEY: “— Brett Kavanaugh –”
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman.”
GRASSLEY: “— to serve as associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.”
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman, I’d like to be recognized for a question before we proceed. Mr. Chairman, I’d like to be recognized to ask a question before we proceed. The committee received just last night less than 15 hours ago —“
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman, regular order.”
HARRIS: “— 42.000 pages of documents that we have not had an opportunity to review or read or analyze.”
GRASSLEY: “You are out of order. I will proceed.”
HARRIS: “We cannot possibly move forward, Mr. Chairman. We have not been given the opportunity to have a meaningful hearing with Congress nominee–“[cross-talk]
GRASSLEY: “I extend a very warm welcome to Judge Kavanaugh, to his wife Ashley, their two daughters –[cross-talk]
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, I agree with my colleague, senator Harris. Mr. Chairman, we received 42.000 documents tat we haven’t been able to review  —”
GRASSLEY: “— And everyone else joining us today.”
UNKNOWN: ” and we believe this hearing should be postponed —”
GRASSLEY: “I know this is an exciting day for all of you here and your you’re rightly proud —”
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, if we cannot be recognized I move to adjourn. Mr. Chairman, I move to adjourn.”
GRASSLEY: “— From Judge Kavanaugh —”
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, I move to adjourn. Mr. Chairman, we have been denied real access to the documents we need to advise —” (Audience cheering)
BLUMENTHAL: “Mr. Chairman, we have been denied the real access to the documents we need —[cross-talk] which turns this hearing into a charade and a mockery of our norms and, Mr. Cha

As the chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee, Sen. Grassley (R-Iowa), attempted to call the hearings to order, hecklers almost immediately began heckling the lawmakers.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) promptly interrupted Grassley, demanding a delay to the hearings. Sen. Klobuchar (D-Minn.) then followed up with another call to delay the hearings. The Democratic lawmakers were upset over documents the White House released last night, which they said came too late.

“We cannot possibly move forward,” Sen. Kamala Harris said. Sen. Blumenthal then moved to adjourn the meeting, a call which received a roaring ovation from the hecklers.

Watch above to witness the circus in full swing.

Below is a transcript:

GRASSLEY: “Good morning. I welcome everyone to this confirmation hearing on the nomination of —“
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman.”
GRASSLEY: “— Brett Kavanaugh –”
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman.”
GRASSLEY: “— to serve as associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.”
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman, I’d like to be recognized for a question before we proceed. Mr. Chairman, I’d like to be recognized to ask a question before we proceed. The committee received just last night less than 15 hours ago —“
HARRIS: “Mr. Chairman, regular order.”
HARRIS: “— 42.000 pages of documents that we have not had an opportunity to review or read or analyze.”
GRASSLEY: “You are out of order. I will proceed.”
HARRIS: “We cannot possibly move forward, Mr. Chairman. We have not been given the opportunity to have a meaningful hearing with Congress nominee–“[cross-talk]
GRASSLEY: “I extend a very warm welcome to Judge Kavanaugh, to his wife Ashley, their two daughters –[cross-talk]
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, I agree with my colleague, senator Harris. Mr. Chairman, we received 42.000 documents tat we haven’t been able to review  —”
GRASSLEY: “— And everyone else joining us today.”
UNKNOWN: ” and we believe this hearing should be postponed —”
GRASSLEY: “I know this is an exciting day for all of you here and your you’re rightly proud —”
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, if we cannot be recognized I move to adjourn. Mr. Chairman, I move to adjourn.”
GRASSLEY: “— From Judge Kavanaugh —”
UNKNOWN: “Mr. Chairman, I move to adjourn. Mr. Chairman, we have been denied real access to the documents we need to advise —” (Audience cheering)
BLUMENTHAL: “Mr. Chairman, we have been denied the real access to the documents we need —[cross-talk] which turns this hearing into a charade and a mockery of our norms and, Mr. Chairman, I therefore move to adjourn this hearing.”
AUDIENCE: “This is a mockery. This is a travesty of justice. Cancel Brett Kavanaugh, adjourn the hearing. [ indecipherable].”
BLUMENTHAL: “Mr. Chairman, I ask for a roll call vote on my motion to adjourn.”
AUDIENCE MEMBER: “‘[indecipherable]'”
GRASSLEY: “Okay.”
BLUMENTHAL: “Mr. Chairman, I move to adjourn. I ask for a roll call vote.”
GRASSLEY: “We are not in executive session. We will continue as planned.”

RELATED: 

— Cory Booker Demands Cancellation of Kavanaugh Hearings: ‘This Committee Is a Violation’

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https://news.grabien.com/story-kavanaugh-hearings-kick-belligerent-shrieking-hecklers

 

Brett Kavanaugh

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Brett Kavanaugh
Judge Brett Kavanaugh.jpg
Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
Assumed office
May 30, 2006
Appointed by George W. Bush
Preceded by Laurence Silberman
White House Staff Secretary
In office
June 6, 2003 – May 30, 2006
President George W. Bush
Preceded by Harriet Miers
Succeeded by Raul F. Yanes
Personal details
Born Brett Michael Kavanaugh
February 12, 1965 (age 53)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s)
Ashley Estes (m. 2004)
Children 2[1]
Education Yale University (BAJD)

Brett Michael Kavanaugh (born February 12, 1965) is a United States circuit judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Kavanaugh has been nominated to become an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. The American Bar Association (ABA) unanimously gave him its highest rating.

Kavanaugh previously was White House Staff Secretary during the presidency of George W. Bush.

As an attorney working for Ken Starr, Kavanaugh played a lead role in drafting the Starr Report, which urged the impeachment of President Bill Clinton.[2] Kavanaugh led the investigation into the suicide of Clinton aide Vince Foster. After the 2000 U.S. presidential election (in which Kavanaugh worked for the George W. Bush campaign in the Florida recount), Kavanaugh joined Bush’s staff, where he led the administration’s effort to identify and confirm judicial nominees.[3]

Kavanaugh was first nominated to the Court of Appeals by Bush in 2003. His confirmation hearings were contentious and stalled for three years over charges of partisanship. Kavanaugh was ultimately confirmed in May 2006 after a series of negotiations between Democratic and Republican U.S. Senators.[4][5][6]

On July 9, 2018, President Donald Trump nominated Kavanaugh to become an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States following the vacancy created by the pending retirement of Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy.[7][8] Trump and his advisors reportedly viewed Kavanaugh as “a stalwart originalist“.[9][10]

Early life and education

Kavanaugh was born on February 12, 1965, in Washington, D.C., and raised in BethesdaMaryland, the son of Martha Gamble (Murphy) and Everett Edward Kavanaugh Jr.[11][12] His mother was a history teacher at Woodson and McKinley high schools in Washington in the 1960s and 1970s. She earned her law degree from Washington College of Law in 1978 and served as a Maryland state Circuit Court Judge from 1995 to 2001.[13][14] His father was the president of the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association for two decades.[15]

Kavanaugh attended Georgetown Preparatory School, where he was two years senior to Justice Neil Gorsuch.[16][17] He then graduated cum laude from Yale University in 1987 with a Bachelor of Arts and from Yale Law School with a Juris Doctor degree in 1990. There, he lived in a dilapidated group house with future-Judge James E. Boasberg and became a basketball partner of Professor George L. Priest, who was the sponsor of the school’s Federalist Society.[18] He was a Notes Editor for the Yale Law Journal.[19]

Early legal career (1990–2006)

Kavanaugh first worked as a law clerk for Judge Walter King Stapleton of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.[18] During Kavanaugh’s clerkship, Stapleton wrote the majority opinion in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, in which the Third Circuit upheld many of Pennsylvania’s abortion restrictions.[18] Priest recommended Kavanaugh to Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski, who was regarded as a feeder judge.[18]

After clerking for Judge Kozinski, Kavanaugh next interviewed with Chief Justice William Rehnquist, but he was not offered a clerkship.[18]

Kavanaugh then earned a one-year fellowship with the Solicitor General of the United StatesKen Starr.[20] Kavanaugh next clerked for Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, working alongside his high school classmate Neil Gorsuch and with future-Judge Gary Feinerman.[16]

Kavanaugh with President George W. Bush and other White House staffers in 2001. Kavanaugh is seated directly to the left of Bush.

After his Supreme Court clerkship, Kavanaugh worked for Ken Starr again as an Associate Counsel in the Office of the Independent Counsel, where his colleagues included Rod Rosenstein and Alex Azar.[21] In that capacity, he handled a number of the novel constitutional and legal issues presented during the Vincent Foster investigation.[21][22][23] In Swidler & Berlin v. United States (1998), Kavanaugh argued his first and only case before the Supreme Court when he asked it to disregard attorney–client privilege in relation to the investigation of Foster’s death.[24] The Supreme Court rejected Kavanaugh’s arguments by a vote of 6–3.[25]

Kavanaugh was a principal author of the Starr Report to Congress on the Monica LewinskyBill Clinton sex scandal.[21] He urged Starr to ask the president sexually graphic questions and argued on broad grounds for the impeachment of Bill Clinton,[26][27] describing Clinton as being involved in “a conspiracy to obstruct justice”, having “disgraced his office” and “lied to the American people”.[28]

Kavanaugh was later a partner at the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis.[20] While there in 2000, he was pro bono counsel of record for relatives of Elián González, a six-year-old rescued Cuban boy while Jeffery M. Leving spearheaded the amicus brief for the boy. After the boy’s mother’s death at sea, members of the extended family in the U.S. wanted to keep him from returning to the care of his sole surviving parent, his father in Cuba. The district court, the Circuit Court and the Supreme Court all followed precedent, refusing to block the boy’s return to his home.[29] In addition, Kavanaugh authored two amicus briefs supporting religious activities and expressions in public places.[29]

After George W. Bush became president in 2001, Kavanaugh was hired as an associate by the White House CounselAlberto Gonzales.[18] There, Kavanaugh worked on the Enron scandal, the successful nomination of Chief Justice John Roberts, and the unsuccessful nomination of Miguel Estrada.[18] Starting in 2003, he served as Assistant to the President and White House Staff Secretary.[20] In that capacity, he was responsible for coordinating all documents to and from the president.

Tenure as U.S. Circuit Judge (2006–present)

Kavanaugh at his confirmation hearing in 2004

President George W. Bush first nominated Kavanaugh to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on July 25, 2003, to a vacancy created by Judge Laurence Silberman, who took senior status in November 2000.[30] Kavanaugh’s nomination was stalled in the Senate for nearly three years. Democratic Senators accused him of being too partisan, with Senator Dick Durbin calling him the “Forrest Gump of Republican politics”.[31] In 2003, the American Bar Association rated Kavanaugh as “well qualified”, but, after opposition from Senate Democrats, rated him in 2006 as only “qualified”.[18] His nomination was opposed by People for the American Way.[32]

The United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary recommended confirmation on a 10–8 party-line vote on May 11, 2006,[33] and Kavanaugh was thereafter confirmed to the court by the U.S. Senate on May 26, 2006, by a vote of 57–36.[34][35] On June 1, 2006, he was sworn in by Justice Anthony Kennedy, for whom he had previously clerked, during a special Rose Garden ceremony at the White House.[36] Kavanaugh was the fourth judge nominated to the D.C. Circuit by Bush and confirmed by the United States Senate. Kavanaugh began hearing cases on September 11, 2006, and had his formal investiture on September 27, at the Prettyman Courthouse. His first published opinion was released on November 17, 2006.[37]

Kavanaugh being sworn in by Justice Anthony Kennedy as President George W. Bush and Kavanaugh’s wife, Ashley Estes Kavanaugh, look on

In July 2007, Democratic Senators Patrick Leahy and Dick Durbin accused Kavanaugh of “misleading” the Senate Judiciary Committee during his nomination. Durbin and Leahy accused Kavanaugh of lying to them in his confirmation hearing when he denied being involved in formulating the Bush administration’s detention and interrogation policies in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks. In 2002, Kavanaugh had met with other White House lawyers, and talked about whether or not the Supreme Court would approve of denying lawyers to prisoners detained as enemy combatants. Kavanaugh had previously been a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, and predicted in that meeting that Kennedy would not approve of denying legal counsel to those prisoners.[38] Durbin said, “It appears that you misled me, the Senate Judiciary Committee and the nation.” [39] This issue re-emerged in July 2018, as Kavanaugh was under consideration for a nomination to the Supreme Court[40], which Kavanaugh received.

Notable cases

The Supreme Court has adopted Kavanaugh’s position on cases 13 times, and has reversed his position only once. These included cases involving environmental regulationscriminal procedure, the separation of powers and extraterritorial jurisdiction in human rightsabuse cases.[18][41] He has been regarded as a feeder judge.[42]

Abortion

During his confirmation hearing in 2006 for the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, Kavanaugh stated that he considered Roe v. Wade binding under the principle of stare decisis and would follow the ruling of the higher court.[43] The prevalence of abortion regulations both historically and at the time, Rehnquist said he could not reach such a conclusion about abortion.”[44]

In October 2017, Kavanaugh joined an unsigned divided panel opinion which found that the Office of Refugee Resettlement could temporarily prevent an unaccompanied alien minor in its custody from traveling to obtain an abortion.[45] Days later, the en banc D.C. Circuit reversed that judgment, with Kavanaugh dissenting.[45][46] The girl then obtained an abortion.[45] In his dissent, Linda Greenhouse says Kavanaugh criticized the majority for creating “a new right for unlawful immigrant minors in U.S. government detention to obtain immediate abortion on demand”.[47] In Azar v. Garza (2018), the girl’s claim was ultimately dismissed as moot after the en banc D.C. Circuit’s judgment was vacated by the U.S. Supreme Court.[48]

Affordable Care Act

In November 2011, Kavanaugh dissented when the D.C. Circuit upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), arguing that the court did not have jurisdiction to hear the case.[49][50] In his dissent concerning jurisdiction, he compared the individual mandate to a tax.[51] After a unanimous panel found that the ACA did not violate the Constitution’s Origination Clause in Sissel v. United States Department of Health & Human Services (2014), Kavanaugh wrote a lengthy dissent from the denial of rehearing en banc.[52][53] In May 2015, Kavanaugh dissented from a decision that denied an en banc rehearing of the Priests for Life v. HHS ruling in which the panel upheld the ACA’s contraceptive mandate accommodations against Priests for LifeReligious Freedom Restoration Act claims.[54][55] In Zubik v. Burwell (2016), the Supreme Court vacated the circuit’s judgment in a per curiam decision.[56]

Appointments Clause and separation of powers

In August 2008, Kavanaugh dissented when the circuit found that the Constitution’s Appointments Clause did not prevent the Sarbanes–Oxley Act from creating a board whose members were not directly removable by the President.[57][58] In Free Enterprise Fund v. Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (2010), the Supreme Court reversed the circuit’s judgment by a vote of 5–4.[59]

In 2015, Kavanaugh found that those directly regulated by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) could challenge the constitutionality of its design.[60][61] In October 2016, Kavanaugh wrote for a divided panel finding that the CFPB’s design was unconstitutional, and made the CFPB Director removable by the President of the United States.[62][63] In January 2018, the en banc D.C. Circuit reversed that judgment by a vote of 7-3, over the dissent of Kavanaugh.[64][65]

Environmental regulation

In 2013, Kavanaugh issued an extraordinary writ of mandamus requiring the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to process the license application of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository, over the dissent of Judge Merrick Garland.[66][67] In April 2014, Kavanaugh dissented when the court found that Labor Secretary Tom Perez could issue workplace safety citations against SeaWorld regarding the multiple killings of its workers by Tilikum the orca.[68][69]

After Kavanaugh wrote for a divided panel striking down a Clean Air Act regulation, the Supreme Court reversed by a vote of 6–2 in EPA v. EME Homer City Generation, L.P. (2014).[70][71] Kavanaugh dissented from the denial of rehearing en banc of a unanimous panel opinion upholding the agency’s regulation of greenhouse gas emissions and a fractured Supreme Court reversed by a vote of 5-4 in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency (2014).[72][73] After Judge Kavanaugh dissented from a per curiamdecision allowing the agency to disregard cost–benefit analysis, the Supreme Court reversed by a vote of 5–4 in Michigan v. EPA (2015).[74][75]

Extraterritorial jurisdiction

In Doe v. Exxon Mobil Corp. (2007), Kavanaugh dissented when the circuit court allowed a lawsuit making accusations of ExxonMobil human rights violations in Indonesia to proceed, arguing in his dissent that the claims were not justiciable.[76][77] Kavanaugh dissented again when the circuit court later found that the corporation could be sued under the Alien Tort Statute of 1789.[41][78][79]

First Amendment and free speech

Kavanaugh wrote for unanimous three-judge district courts when they held that the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act could restrict soft money donations to political parties and could forbid campaign contributions by foreign citizens.[80][81] Those judgments were both summarily affirmed on direct appeal by the Supreme Court.[82]

In 2014, Kavanaugh concurred in the judgment when the en banc D.C. Circuit found that the Free Speech Clause did not forbid the government from requiring meatpackers to include a country of origin label on their products.[83][84] In United States Telecom Ass’n v. FCC (2016), Kavanaugh dissented when the en banc circuit refused to rehear a rejected challenge to the net neutrality rule, writing that “Congress did not clearly authorize the FCC to issue the net neutrality rule”.[20][85][86]

Fourth Amendment and civil liberties

In November 2010, Kavanaugh dissented from the denial of rehearing en banc after the circuit found that attaching a Global Positioning System tracking device to a vehicle violated the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.[87][88] The circuit’s judgment was then affirmed by the Supreme Court in United States v. Jones (2012).[89] In February 2016, Kavanaugh dissented when the en banc circuit refused to rehear police officers’ rejected claims of qualified immunity for arresting partygoers in a vacant house.[20][90] In District of Columbia v. Wesby (2018), the Supreme Court unanimously reversed the circuit’s judgment.[91]

In Klayman v. Obama (2015), Kavanaugh concurred when the circuit court denied an en banc rehearing of its decision to vacate a district court order blocking the National Security Agency‘s warrantless bulk collection of telephony metadata.[92][93] In his concurrence, Kavanaugh wrote that the metadata collection was not a search, and, even if it were, no reasonable suspicion would be required because of the government’s special need to prevent terrorist attacks.[94]

National security

In April 2009, Kavanaugh wrote a lengthy concurrence when the court found that detainees at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp had no right to advanced notice before being transferred to another country.[95][96] In Kiyemba v. Obama (2010), the Supreme Court vacated that judgment while refusing to review the matter.[97] In June 2010, Kavanaugh wrote a concurrence in judgment when the en banc D.C. Circuit found that the Al-Shifa pharmaceutical factory owners could not bring a defamation suit regarding the government’s allegations that they were terrorists.[98][99] In October 2012, he wrote for a unanimous court when it found that the Constitution’s Ex Post Facto Clause made it unlawful for the government to prosecute Salim Hamdan under the Military Commissions Act of 2006 on charges of providing material support for terrorism.[100][101]

In August 2010, Kavanaugh wrote a lengthy concurrence when the en banc circuit refused to rehear Ghaleb Nassar Al Bihani’s rejected claims that the international law of war limits the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists.[20][102] In 2014, Kavanaugh concurred in the judgment when the en banc circuit found that Ali al-Bahlul could be retroactively convicted of war crimes, provided existing statute already made it a crime “because it does not alter the definition of the crime, the defenses or the punishment”.[103][104] In October 2016, Kavanaugh wrote the plurality opinion when the en banc circuit found al-Bahlul could be convicted by a military commission even if his offenses are not internationally recognized as war crimes under the law of war.[105][106]

In Meshal v. Higgenbotham (2016), Kavanaugh concurred when the divided panel threw out a claim by an American that he had been disappeared by the FBI in a Kenyan black site.[107][108]

Second Amendment and gun ownership

In October 2011, Kavanaugh dissented when the circuit court found that a ban on the sale of semi-automatic rifles was permissible under the Second Amendment. This case followed the landmark Supreme Court ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008).[109][110]

Law clerk hiring practices

More than half of Kavanaugh’s law clerks have been women (25 of 48) and more than a quarter have been people of color (13 of 48).[111] A number of Kavanaugh’s law clerks are the children of other judges and high profile legal figures, including Clayton Kozinski (son of former federal Judge Alex Kozinski), Porter Wilkinson (daughter of Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III), Philip Alito (son of Justice Samuel Alito), Sophia Chua-Rubenfeld (daughter of Yale Law Professor and “Tiger Mom” Amy Chua), and Emily Chertoff (daughter of former DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff).[112][113]

Nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States (2018)

Kavanaugh and his family with President Donald Trump in 2018

On July 2, 2018, Kavanaugh was one of four U.S. Court of Appeals judges to receive a personal 45-minute interview by President Donald Trump as a potential replacement for Justice Anthony Kennedy.[114] On July 9, Trump announced his intent to nominate Kavanaugh for a seat on the Supreme Court.[115][116]

Legal philosophy and approach

The Washington Posts statistical analysis estimated that the ideologies of most of Trump’s announced candidates were “statistically indistinguishable” and placed Kavanaugh between Justices Gorsuch and Alito.[117] Brian Bennett writing for Time magazine in July 2018 reported that Trump and his advisors viewed Kavanaugh as “a stalwart originalist“.[118] Jonathan Turley of George Washington University has stated that among the judges considered by Trump, “Kavanaugh has the most robust view of presidential powers and immunities.[119] Brian Bennett writing for TIME magazine cites Kavanaugh’s 2009 Minnesota Law Review article as defending the privilege of the President to immunity from prosecution during tenure in office.[120] In a 2017 speech at the American Enterprise Institute about former Chief Justice, William Rehnquist, he praised his opinions in Roe v. Wade and Furman v. Georgia, where Rehnquist dissented in rulings that overturned the ban against abortion and the statutes which supported the death penalty.[121][122]

According to the Judicial Common Space scores, a score based on the ideology scores of the home state senators and president who nominated the judge to the federal benchClarence Thomas is the only justice more conservative than Kavanaugh. According to this metric, Kavanaugh’s confirmation would mean the composition of the court would shift to the right.[123] Had Merrick Garland been confirmed, Stephen Breyer would have become the median swing vote when Justice Kennedy retired. However, since Scalia was replaced by another conservative (Gorsuch), it is expected that Chief Justice John Roberts will become the median swing vote on the Supreme Court if Kavanaugh is confirmed.[124]

Teaching and scholarship

Since joining the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Kavanaugh taught full-term courses on Separation of Powers at Harvard Law School from 2008 to 2015, on the Supreme Court at Harvard Law School between 2014 and 2018, on National Security and Foreign Relations Law at Yale Law School in 2011, and on Constitutional Interpretation at Georgetown University Law Center in 2007. Kavanaugh has also been named the Samuel Williston Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School since 2009.[125] Kavanaugh was hired as a visiting professor by Elena Kagan, who was then the dean of Harvard Law School in 2008 and according to The Boston Globe, quickly became a student favorite professor who was generous with his time and accessible. He would often dine in Cambridge with students and offer references and career advice.[126][127] Kavanaugh received high evaluations from his students, including J. D. Vance.[128]

In 2009, Kavanaugh wrote an article for the Minnesota Law Review in which he argued that Congress should exempt U.S. presidents from civil lawsuits while in office[129] because, among other things, such lawsuits could be “time-consuming and distracting” for the president and would thus “ill serve the public interest, especially in times of financial or national security crisis.”[130] Kavanaugh argued that if a president “does something dastardly”, that president may be impeached by the House of Representatives, convicted by the Senate, and criminally prosecuted after leaving office.[129] The US would have been better off if president Clinton “could have focused on Osama bin Laden without being distracted by the Paula Jones sexual harassment case and its criminal investigation offshoots”.[129]This article garnered attention in 2018 when Kavanaugh was nominated to the Supreme Court by President Donald Trump, whose 2016 presidential campaign is the subject of an ongoing federal probe by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.[130]

When reviewing a book on statutory interpretation by Second Circuit Chief Judge Robert Katzmann, Kavanaugh observed that judges often cannot agree on a statute if its text is ambiguous.[131] To remedy this, Kavanaugh encouraged judges to first seek the “best reading” of the statute, through “interpreting the words of the statute” as well as the context of the statute as a whole, and only then apply other interpretive techniques that may justify an interpretation that differs from the “best meaning” such as constitutional avoidancelegislative history, and Chevron deference.[131]

Personal life

Kavanaugh had his first date with his future wife Ashley Estes, then–personal secretary to President George W. Bush, on September 10, 2001. They were among the occupants of the White House evacuated during the September 11 attacks.[132]

In early 2006, Kavanaugh and his wife bought a $1.2-million home in Chevy Chase Section Five, Maryland.[18] In 2018, Kavanaugh reported that he earned a $220,000 salary as a federal judge and $27,000 as a lecturer at Harvard Law School during the previous year.[133]

Kavanaugh is an avid runner who has run the Boston Marathon twice. In 2010, at 45 years of age, he finished the course in 3:59:45, 1:53:53 behind the winner, and in 2015 he finished the race in 4:08:36.[134]

Kavanaugh is a Catholic[135] and serves as a regular lector at his Washington, D.C. church, the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament. He has helped serve meals to the homeless as part of church programs, and has tutored at the Washington Jesuit Academy, a Catholic private school in the District of Columbia.[136][137]

Publications

  • Are Hawaiians Indians? The Justice Department Thinks So., Wall St. J. A35 (September 27, 1999)
  • Law of Judicial Precedent (St. Paul: Thomson Reuters, 2016) (one of 13 co-authors)

See also

References

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

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Colin Kaepernick’s new ‘Just Do it’ Nike ad puts pressure on NFL to take a stand

Decades from now, when Americans look back at the NFL player protests and wonder how anyone could have seen them for anything but the plea for equality they are, Colin Kaepernick’s new Nike ad will be one of the enduring images.

For two years now, the NFL and its owners have desperately tried to silence Kaepernick and the movement he began. They blackballed the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback and teammate Eric Reid. They threatened to fine or cut the players who joined them in protest. They created a ridiculous policy that only served to confuse matters more.

And for what? To go down on the wrong side of history? Because that’s how future generations will see it, as the Nike ad released Monday made clear.

“Believe in something,” the tagline reads. “Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

Colin Kaepernick

@Kaepernick7

Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.

This is not some small, left-leaning company that has decided Kaepernick is on the side of angels in this fight. It is one of the world’s largest conglomerates, a setter of trends and arbiter of what’s cool.

And it is one of the NFL’s biggest partners, the official apparel company of the league.

For Nike to choose Kaepernick sends a message even Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones cannot ignore. This is bigger than a hot-button issue in an election season, bigger than a segment of fans who choose to be angrier at the method of protest than the message behind it.

While the NFL and its owners have been trying to contain the issue, Kaepernick and the other players have been playing the long game. The civil rights protests were wildly unpopular when they were occurring — go back and research the polls and opinions of the time — but are now viewed as righteous and essential to our ongoing struggle for equality. The NFL protests will be viewed much the same way through the lens of history.

Nike has recognized as much, betting a very large and prominent endorsement deal that Kaepernick will one day be seen much like Muhammad Ali. A rabble rouser who outraged the establishment in his heyday, Ali eventually became a widely admired and influential figure once society caught up.

Cynics will say this is simply a marketing ploy for Nike, a way to capitalize on an issue everyone is already talking about. Perhaps. But that doesn’t lessen the burden on the NFL.

Or the stakes.

The league can continue to dither, trying to appease everyone while pleasing no one, and be remembered as an organization that put expedience ahead of equality. Or it can be bold.

More: What Hollywood is saying about the Kaepernick Nike campaign

More: Big & Rich singer urges Nike boycott over Kaepernick ad

By signing Kaepernick — and I mean a team giving him a legitimate chance to compete, not hiding him on the depth chart as a No. 3 quarterback — the NFL can tell the entire country that fighting for a truly equal society is a fight worth having. That while it recognizes the passions the player protests have produced, there is nothing dishonorable about holding our country to account.

There will be some backlash, sure. Just as some folks angered by Nike’s stance will no doubt express their outrage with their wallets, refusing to buy shoes, shirts or anything else with a swoosh on it.

So be it.

Doing the right thing isn’t always easy, especially in the moment. But this moment, and who stood for what during it, will be remembered for generations to come.

It’s time to take a stand, NFL. Go ahead and do it.

Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Nancy Armour on Twitter @nrarmour.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/columnist/nancy-armour/2018/09/03/nike-colin-kaepernick-just-do-ad-nfl-message/1187823002/

Nike took a calculated risk with Colin Kaepernick ad, experts say

Nike took a calculated risk with Colin Kaepernick ad, experts say
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is featured in this new Nike ad for the 30th anniversary of the company’s “Just Do It” campaign. (Nike Inc.)

Nike Inc.’s decision to feature Colin Kaepernick in its latest “Just Do It” advertising campaign predictably blew up the internet.

In one video, Nike shoes were set on fire. John Rich, half of the country music duo Big & Rich, showed that his soundman had cut Nike’s iconic swoosh off his socks. #NikeBoycott quickly began trending on Twitter.

At the same time, tennis star Serena Williams tweeted that she was “especially proud to be a part of the Nike family today.” Others said their children planned to wear Nike from head to toe in support of Kaepernick.

None of that should have been a surprise — least of all to Nike.

The athletic shoe and apparel company took a calculated risk in featuring Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49er quarterback who is now far better known for kneeling during the pregame national anthem to protest police shootings of black men, marketing experts said. Though the move was sure to be seen by many as provocative, the Beaverton, Ore., company is betting that more customers will support it — particularly the younger demographic that Nike is courting.

“Companies increasingly realize that it’s important for them to be purpose-driven,” said Joshua Beck, an assistant professor of marketing at the University of Oregon who has conducted research on corporate brand activism. “Nike’s very careful in the way it makes decisions about its brand. This is something Nike thought would be consistent with who they are as a company.”

Nike isn’t the only apparel brand fighting for younger consumers. Baltimore-based Under Armour Inc. also caters to a younger demographic and has signed a number of elite athletes, including Golden State Warriors point guard Steph Curry and Misty Copeland, the first African American female principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre.

Nike reportedly had competition for Kaepernick — Yahoo Sports reported Monday that Adidas and Puma were among “multiple” brands that had talked about signing him if Nike did not renew his sponsorship deal, which began in 2011.

Kaepernick is just one of several athletes, including Williams and New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., featured in the 30th anniversary of Nike’s “Just Do It” ad campaign. A Nike spokeswoman said in a statement Tuesday that the campaign “celebrates some of the most inspirational athletes who have chased dreams no matter the obstacle or outcome.”

Kaepernick’s new Nike deal is expected to feature the athlete on billboards, TV commercials and in online ads, as well as a clothing line. In the first ad, an image of Kaepernick appears with these words: “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

Kaepernick has not played for a team since he left the 49ers in 2016 and became a free agent; last year he filed a grievance with the National Football League, alleging that owners colluded to keep him out of the NFL because of his protests. An arbitrator recently sent the case to trial.

Nike’s decision to feature Kaepernick is in keeping with the rebellious image the company has sought in past campaigns. Last month, Nike tweeted an image of Williams with the words, “You can take the superhero out of her costume, but you can never take away her superpowers” after the French tennis federation ruled that she would not be allowed to wear a black catsuit at the French Open next year.

The decision also reflects the company’s long-standing tradition of standing behind its athletes. Nike stood by Kobe Bryant after the Lakers star was charged with sexual assault in 2003. Prosecutors later dropped the criminal charges against Bryant and a civil lawsuit was settled out of court in 2005.

“If you think about Nike as a marketing company, they’ve always been provocative,” said Matt Powell, sports industry analyst for NPD Group, a market research firm. “They tend to stick with their athletes through thick and thin.”

The Kaepernick decision appears to have initially produced a public relations boost for Nike. A majority of the media sentiment expressed about Nike since the announcement was positive, according to an analysis done Tuesday morning by Apex Marketing Group — resulting in what the firm estimated to be the equivalent of $19.01 million of paid advertisements taken out in television, radio, web and social media. That compares with $13.76 million worth of neutral sentiment and $10.91 million in negative sentiment, said Eric Smallwood, Apex president.

Wall Street was less positive; Nike’s stock closed at $79.60 Tuesday, down 3.2%, slightly worse than the market as a whole.

Nike’s campaign could pay off in the long term. Boycotts tend to be short-lived and consumers who support brands’ actions typically persist. That can lead to sales growth, Beck said.

Corporate brand activism is one way to achieve that loyalty, he said.

“It’s not enough to just say that you’re for the environment or for fair labor practices,” Beck said. “Most companies now believe that. So the question is what can we do as a brand and stand out and differentiate from other competing brands.”

Millennial consumers, in particular, want brands to be transparent about their stances on social issues, said Powell of NPD Group, whose research found that two-thirds of the people who wear Nike in the U.S. are under 35 years old. And 45% of that group is under 25.

“In many ways, I think this campaign aligns very much in line with a younger consumer,” Powell said. “The older consumer is clearly not what Nike is focused on.”

But in the era of President Trump, the consequences of taking sides can be unpredictable, even for an edgy name like Nike.

“People have viewed them as this lifestyle brand, as this compelling brand that empowers athletes,” said David Carter, executive director of the USC Sports Business Institute. “But if they veer too far toward social activism, that may alienate a certain part of their consumer base.”

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-nike-kaepernick-20180905-story.html#

Nike Falls as Critics Fume on Social Media Over Kaepernick Deal

The backlash started just hours after Colin Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who sparked controversy for kneeling during the national anthem, tweeted that he’s starring in Nike Inc.’s iconic “Just Do It” ad campaign.

Following the announcement, the hashtags #BoycottNike and #JustBurnIt started trending on Twitter and shares started falling. Some angry consumers even posted photos and videos of themselves burning their Nike shoes and other gear to protest the company using the divisive figure in its 30th anniversary ad campaign.

Nike shares slipped as much as 3.9 percent to $79 as of 9:31 a.m. Tuesday in New York — the biggest intraday slide in five months. They had climbed 31 percent this year through Friday’s close.

Nike Falls as Critics Fume on Social Media Over Kaepernick Deal

The fallout was no surprise but Nike may be betting that the upside of a Kaepernick endorsement is worth angering conservative Americans and supporters of President Donald Trump. Kaepernick — who sparked a movement among professional athletes when he began taking a knee in 2016 during the anthem to protest police brutality against African Americans — is embroiled in a lawsuit against the National Football League and accuses it of blacklisting him.

Popular Athlete

Still, with the former 49er one of the most popular football players in the U.S. the shoe giant is likely counting on passions to cool.

“The long-term relationship and a contract that benefits both parties over the next 10 years will likely outweigh any current controversy,” said Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Chen Grazutis.

Kaepernick tweeted an image from the campaign with the caption, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

Nike is in a fierce battle with rival Adidas AG to sign star athletes. The combined marketing spending of the two companies may reach as much as $10 billion by fiscal 2020.

Nike has also shown its willingness to wade into America’s culture wars. Just a few weeks after Trump’s inauguration last year, the company launched a high-profile “Equality” campaign featuring LeBron James and Serena Williams. The campaign’s ambassadors included Ibtihaj Muhammad, a Muslim American fencer who wears a hijab when competing, and transgender triathlete Chris Mosier.

Despite criticism from Trump and calls by both conservatives and liberals to boycott the league, the NFL is still pulling in billions of dollars. The world’s richest sports league, the NFL distributed a record $8.1 billion to its teams last season and posted an estimated overall revenue of $14 billion.

There is a risk of Nike upsetting its relationship with the NFL, which last week lost an attempt to dismiss Kaepernick’s lawsuit alleging collusion by the league to prevent him from signing with a team.

Still, the league approved a new 10-year agreement in May that will make Nike and Fanatics Inc. the primary suppliers of apparel to teams and fans. As of 2020, Nike will continue to make all on-field NFL apparel, while all adult fan gear will have the Nike logo, but be made and distributed by Fanatics. Until this deal, Nike had been making everything.

https://www.bloombergquint.com/pursuits/2018/09/04/nike-decides-a-colin-kaepernick-deal-is-worth-the-backlash#gs.ZHLSAIw

Nike’s latest advertisement featuring Colin Kaepernick has sparked a lot of debate and controversy around the sports world and the country at large. And while seemingly everybody has an opinion one way or another, the quarterback of the Patriots is apparently backing the message behind Kaepernick.

An active Instagram user, Brady double-tapped the screen when he saw the account for GQ Magazine share the Nike ad, which features Kaepernick’s face and includes the words, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

img 7350 Tom Brady Likes Colin Kaepernick Nike Advertisement On Instagram

Tom Brady is shown as one of the thousands of Instagram users to “Like” the sharing of Colin Kaepernick’s latest Nike advertisement. (Screenshot from Instagram/GQ)

The 41-year-old Brady almost always avoids commenting publicly on controversial matters, though he has expressed support for Kaepernick over the past couple of years.

In an interview with CBS last September, Brady praised Kaepernick’s quarterbacking ability and said, “he’s certainly qualified and I hope he gets a shot.”

In November on WEEI, Brady said Kaepernick “was a damn good quarterback. He’s played at a high level and brought his teams to Super Bowls.”

The new Kaepernick ad, which hit the internet on Sunday, resulted in instant reaction, both in support and protest of the statement. Brady’s unlikely to comment further on his social media activity, but considering that he knows how closely all of his social media activity is monitored and covered, the “like” on Instagram serves a firm statement on Brady’s behalf.

Tom Brady Likes Colin Kaepernick Nike Advertisement On Instagram

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Colin Kaepernick

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Colin Kaepernick
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Kaepernick with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012
Free agent