The Pronk Pops Show 1390, February 3, 2020, Story 1: Bearded Rush Limbaugh Announces His Advanced Lung Cancer Diagnosis — Videos — Story 2: Radical Extremist Democrat Socialist (REDS) Bernie Sanders Surges Ahead in Iowa — Story 3:President Trump’s Legal Team Senate Impeachment Trial Closing Arguments —  Vindicate The Right To Vote, Vindicate The Constitution and Vindicate The Rule of Law By Rejecting These Articles of Impeachment — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 1365 November 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1364 November 21, 2019

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Story 1: Bearded Rush Limbaugh Announces His Advanced Lung Cancer Diagnosis — Videos

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Rush Limbaugh announces he has ‘advanced lung cancer’ EIB Network

Rush Limbaugh announces he has ‘advanced lung cancer’

RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, this… This day has been one of the most difficult days in recent memory for me because I’ve known this moment was coming in the program today. Now, I’m sure that you all know by now, I really don’t like talking about myself, and I don’t like making things about me other than in the usual satirical, parodic, joking way.

I like this program to be about you and the things that matter to all of us. The one thing that I know that has happened over the 31-plus years of this program is that there has been an incredible bond that has developed between all of you and me. Now, this program’s 31 years old, and in that 31 years, there are people — you hear them call all the time — who have been listening the whole time. They’ve been listening 30 years or 25 years.

I just had somebody say they’ve been here three years. But, whatever, it is a family-type relationship to me, and I’ve mentioned to you that this program and this job is what has provided me the greatest satisfaction and happiness that I’ve ever experienced, more than I ever thought that I would experience. So I have to tell you something today that I wish I didn’t have to tell you.

It’s a struggle for me because I had to inform my staff earlier today. I can’t escape… Even though people are telling me it’s not the way to look at it, I can’t help but feel that I’m letting everybody down with this. But the upshot is that I have been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer, diagnosis confirmed by two medical institutions back on January 20th. I first realized something was wrong on my birthday weekend, January 12th.

I wish I didn’t have to tell you this, and I thought about not telling anybody. I thought about trying to do this without anybody knowing, ’cause I don’t like making things about me. But there are going to be days that I’m not gonna be able to be here because I’m undergoing treatment or I’m reacting to treatment, and I know that that would inspire all kinds of curiosity with people wondering what’s going on.

And the worst thing that can happen is when there is something going on and you try to hide it and cover it up. It’s eventually gonna leak, and then people are gonna say, “Why didn’t you just say it? Why’d you try to fool everybody? ” It’s not that I want to fool anybody. It’s just that I don’t want to burden anybody with it, and I haven’t wanted to. But it is what it is. You know me; I’m the mayor of Realville.

So this has happened, and my intention is to come here every day I can and to do this program as normally and as competently and as expertly as I do each and every day, because that is the source of my greatest satisfaction professionally, personally. I’ve had so much support from family and friends during this that it’s just been tremendous. I told the staff today that I have a deeply personal relationship with God that I do not proselytize about.

But I do, and I have been working that relationship (chuckles) tremendously, which I do regularly anyway, but I’ve been focused on it intensely for the past couple of weeks. I know there are many of you in this audience who have experienced this, who are going through it yourselves at the same time. I am, at the moment, experiencing zero symptoms other than… Look, I don’t want to get too detailed in this.

What led to shortness of breath that I thought might have been asthma or — you know, I’m 69 — it could have been my heart. My heart’s in great shape, ticking away fine, squeezing and pumping great. It was not that. It was a pulmonary problem involving malignancy. So I’m gonna be gone the next couple days as we figure out the treatment course of action and have further testing done. But, as I said, I’m gonna be here as often as I can.

And, as is the case with everybody who finds themselves in this circumstance, you just want to push ahead and try to keep everything as normal as you can, which is something that I’m going to try to do. But I felt that I had to tell you because that’s the kind of relationship I feel like I have with those of you in this audience. I say it every Christmas, which is when I feel more thankful than at Thanksgiving.

And I feel thankful at Thanksgiving, but Christmas it really gets to me. But over the years, a lot of people have been very nice telling me how much this program has meant to them. But whatever that is, it pales in comparison to what you all have meant to me. And I can’t describe this. But I know you’re there every day. I can see you. It’s strange how, but I know you’re there.

I know you’re there in great numbers, and I know that you understand everything I say. The rest of the world may not when they hear it expressed a different way, but I know that you do. You’ve been one of the greatest sources of confidence that I’ve had in my life. So, I hope I will be talking about this as little as necessary in the coming days.

But we’ve got a great bunch of doctors, a great team assembled. We’re at full-speed ahead on this, and it’s just now a matter of implementing what we are gonna be told later this week. So, I’ll be back here. I hope I’ll be back Thursday. If not, it will be as soon as I can — and know that every day I’m not here, I’ll be thinking about you and missing you. Thank you very much.

 

Conservative radio show host Rush Limbaugh, 69, stuns his listeners by announcing he has advanced lung cancer

  • The radio personality told listeners the news live on his show Monday afternoon
  • Limbaugh said he first noticed something was wrong after suffering shortness of breath over the weekend of January 12 and was diagnosed eight days later 
  • The host told listeners he will not be on the air for some days due to treatment  
  • Breaking the news he called it ‘one of the most difficult days in recent memory’
  • Staunch Republican Limbaugh is a friend of President Donald Trump and the pair have been spotted golfing together on a number of occasions 
  • Limbaugh is thought to have started smoking when he was 16 but quit in the early 80s after a ‘real bad case of bronchitis, almost like walking pneumonia’ 
  • He has also spoken of his love of smoking cigars in the past, saying they are ‘just a tremendous addition to the enjoyment of life’

Rush Limbaugh has announced that he has been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.

The radio personality, 69, broke the news live on his show on Monday afternoon, explaining to his millions of listeners that he will not be on the air for some days due to treatment.

Limbaugh said he first noticed something was wrong after suffering from shortness of breath over his birthday weekend of January 12 and was diagnosed on January 20. He said he had thought about not telling anyone of the news.

But the staunch Republican, who is a friend of President Donald Trump, added: ‘There are going to be days that I’m not going to be able to be here.’

He has also spoken of his love of smoking cigars in the past, saying they are ‘just a tremendous addition to the enjoyment of life’.

Rush Limbaugh announced Monday that he has been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer

Donald Trump and Rush Limbaugh at Mar-A-Lago in April 2019. Limbaugh has been spotted playing golf with the president on a number of occasions

The radio host is pictured with his fourth wife Kathryn Rogers

Donald Trump and Rush Limbaugh at Mar-A-Lago in April 2019, left. Limbaugh has been spotted playing golf with the president on a number of occasions. The radio host is pictured with his fourth wife Kathryn Rogers, right

The radio personality is pictured speaking with President Donald Trump in 2018

Limbaugh started his radio career in 1971 as a DJ on a Pennsylvania radio station. He has been spotted playing golf with the president on a number of occasions.

Trump announced the host had signed a new four year contract on his show at a rally in Miami last month, telling supporters: ‘We have great people. Rush just signed another four-year contract. He just wants four more years, OK?’

Limbaugh said Monday: ‘This day has been one of the most difficult days in recent memory, for me, because I’ve known this moment was coming.

‘I’m sure that you all know by now that I really don’t like talking about myself and I don’t like making things about me.

‘One thing that I know, that has happened over the 31-plus years of this program is that there has been an incredible bond that had developed between all of you and me. It is a family type relationship to me.’

He added: ‘I can’t help but feel that I’m letting everybody down with this. But the upshot is that I have been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.’

How The Rush Limbaugh Show became the voice for conservative politics

Rush Limbaugh started his radio career in 1971 as a DJ on a Pennsylvania radio station.

He started the trend of conservative talk radio in 1988, during Ronald Reagan’s presidency.

He started his first national radio show from New York, later relocating to Palm Beach, Florida.

Since then his show made him a household name with an estimated 14 million listeners in 2015.

The hyper-partisan broadcaster has dominated talk radio with a raucous, liberal-bashing style that made him one of the most influential voices of American right-wing politics and inspired other conservative broadcasters including Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reilly.

‘It’s shocking to the industry, and it should be shocking to the political establishment,’ said Michael Harrison, publisher of Talkers magazine, the trade industry publication for talk radio.

‘But we’ve got a great bunch of doctors, a great team assembled. We’re at full-speed ahead on this, and it’s just now a matter of implementing what we are gonna be told later this week. So I’ll be back here. I hope I’ll be back Thursday. If not, it will be as soon as I can — and know that every day I’m not here, I’ll be thinking about you and missing you. Thank you very much.’

Following the news Megyn Kelly tweeted: ‘Just heard the news about Rush Limbaugh, a man who loves this country and his listeners dearly, and is a tireless warrior for things he holds dear. Wishing him strength and tenacity as he takes on this new battle w/advanced lung cancer. Do what you do so well, Rush – FIGHT.’

Liz Cheney added: ‘Prayers for @rushlimbaugh. No one has been a stronger or more effective warrior for the conservative cause and for the future of our country. No one has had a bigger impact. We’re in this fight with you, Rush.’

Limbaugh told listeners in 2013: ‘I started smoking when I was 16. I went to electronics school in Dallas at age 16. Anyway, I was the youngest in this school by four or five years and everybody smoked.

‘So I started smoking. I was 16. Let’s see, it was 1980, ’81, ’82, somewhere around there when I quit.

‘One day I got a real bad case of bronchitis, almost like walking pneumonia, so I could not smoke a cigarette without coughing spasms.

‘So I said, ‘Well, I’m never gonna have a better time than now to quit when I can’t smoke.’ So I quit then.’

WHAT IS LUNG CANCER?

Lung cancer is one of the most common and serious types of cancer.

Around 228,000 people are diagnosed with the condition every year in the US.

There are usually no signs or symptoms in the early stages of lung cancer, but many people with the condition eventually develop symptoms including:

– a persistent cough

– coughing up blood

– persistent breathlessness

– unexplained tiredness and weight loss

– an ache or pain when breathing or coughing

You should see a doctor if you have these symptoms.

Treating lung cancer

Treatment depends on the type of mutation the cancer has, how far it’s spread and how good your general health is.

If the condition is diagnosed early and the cancerous cells are confined to a small area, surgery to remove the affected area of lung may be recommended.

If surgery is unsuitable due to your general health, radiotherapy to destroy the cancerous cells may be recommended instead.

If the cancer has spread too far for surgery or radiotherapy to be effective, chemotherapy is usually used.

There are also a number of medicines known as targeted therapies.

They target a specific change in or around the cancer cells that is helping them to grow.

Targeted therapies cannot cure lung cancer but they can slow its spread.

Source: NHS

His producer Bo Snerdley tweeted: ‘Those of you who are listening to the Rush Limbaugh show now. Pray with us. Thank you. God Bless you Rush Limbaugh. Love you so much Rush.’

The president was seen enjoying lunch with Limbaugh three days before Christmas at Trump’s West Palm Beach golf club. The two also spent Good Friday together last year during a break in the Sunshine State.

Conservative radio host Limbaugh has been one of the president’s most vocal supporters, claiming Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report was ‘bogus from the beginning’.

He called the probe into possible collusion with the Russians a ‘manufactured coup’.

In 2015 he defended smokers, telling a listener: ‘There ought to be some measure of appreciation for people who buy tobacco products, despite the forces arrayed against them;

‘It’s getting harder and harder to use tobacco products, unless you want to call marijuana tobacco, and you can do that anywhere, for the most part.

‘But the fact of the matter is they have to endure a lot, the public hates them, they’re despised, they can’t smoke in places of comfort anymore, can’t even smoke outside in a park! And yet their actions and their taxes and their purchases are funding children’s health care programs.

‘I’m just saying there ought to be a little appreciation shown for them, instead of having them hated and reviled. I would like a medal for smoking cigars, is what I’m saying.’

Limbaugh’s announcement come at a tumultuous political time, as the conclusion of President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial nears.

The hyper-partisan broadcaster has dominated talk radio with a raucous, liberal-bashing style that made him one of the most influential voices of American right-wing politics and inspired other conservative broadcasters including Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reilly.

‘Rush you are in our prayers,’ Beck tweeted. ‘We live in a time of modern miracles. Millions are praying you find one.’

Kate Rogers and Rush Limbaugh attend the Andrea Bocelli concert at The Mar-a-Lago Club on February 28, 2010 in Palm Beach, Florida

From left to right: Jack Nicklaus and Rush Limbaugh pictured with Rudy Guiliani and Marvin Shanken during at The PGA National Golf Club on March 21, 2011 in West Palm Beach, Florida

From left to right: Jack Nicklaus and Rush Limbaugh pictured with Rudy Guiliani and Marvin Shanken during at The PGA National Golf Club on March 21, 2011 in West Palm Beach, Florida

The media figure’s endorsement and friendship is a conservative political treasure. His idol, Ronald Reagan, wrote a letter that Limbaugh read on the air in December 1992 and which sealed his reputation among conservatives: ‘You’ve become the number one voice for conservatism in our country,’ Reagan wrote.

Two years later, Limbaugh would be so widely credited as key to Republicans’ takeover of Congress for the first time in 40 years, he was deemed an honorary member of the new class.

Limbaugh has frequently been accused of hate-filled speech, including bigotry and blatant racism through his comments and sketches such as ‘Barack the Magic Negro,’ a song featured on his show that said Obama ‘makes guilty whites feel good’ and that the politician is ‘black, but not authentically.’

Rush Limbaugh shares his cancer diagnosis with listeners, telling them: ‘We are a family’

The full transcript from Rush Limbaugh as he shares his cancer diagnosis with listeners on his show on Monday afternoon:

‘Ladies and gentlemen, this… This day has been one of the most difficult days in recent memory for me because I’ve known this moment was coming in the program today. Now, I’m sure that you all know by now, I really don’t like talking about myself, and I don’t like making things about me other than in the usual satirical, parodic, joking way.

‘I like this program to be about you and the things that matter to all of us. The one thing that I know that has happened over the 31-plus years of this program is that there has been an incredible bond that has developed between all of you and me. Now, this program’s 31 years old, and in that 31 years, there are people — you hear them call all the time — who have been listening the whole time. They’ve been listening 30 years or 25 years.

‘I just had somebody say they’ve been here three years. But, whatever, it is a family-type relationship to me, and I’ve mentioned to you that this program and this job is what has provided me the greatest satisfaction and happiness that I’ve ever experienced, more than I ever thought that I would experience. So I have to tell you something today that I wish I didn’t have to tell you.

‘It’s a struggle for me because I had to inform my staff earlier today. I can’t escape… Even though people are telling me it’s not the way to look at it, I can’t help but feel that I’m letting everybody down with this. But the upshot is that I have been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer, diagnosis confirmed by two medical institutions back on January 20th. I first realized something was wrong on my birthday weekend, January 12th.

‘I wish I didn’t have to tell you this, and I thought about not telling anybody. I thought about trying to do this without anybody knowing, ’cause I don’t like making things about me. But there are going to be days that I’m not gonna be able to be here because I’m undergoing treatment or I’m reacting to treatment, and I know that that would inspire all kinds of curiosity with people wondering what’s going on.

‘And the worst thing that can happen is when there is something going on and you try to hide it and cover it up. It’s eventually gonna leak, and then people are gonna say, ‘Why didn’t you just say it? Why’d you try to fool everybody? ‘ It’s not that I want to fool anybody. It’s just that I don’t want to burden anybody with it, and I haven’t wanted to. But it is what it is. You know me; I’m the mayor of Realville.

‘So this has happened, and my intention is to come here every day I can and to do this program as normally and as competently and as expertly as I do each and every day, because that is the source of my greatest satisfaction professionally, personally. I’ve had so much support from family and friends during this that it’s just been tremendous. I told the staff today that I have a deeply personal relationship with God that I do not proselytize about.

‘But I do, and I have been working that relationship (chuckles) tremendously, which I do regularly anyway, but I’ve been focused on it intensely for the past couple of weeks. I know there are many of you in this audience who have experienced this, who are going through it yourselves at the same time. I am, at the moment, experiencing zero symptoms other than… Look, I don’t want to get too detailed in this.

‘What led to shortness of breath that I thought might have been asthma or — you know, I’m 69 — it could have been my heart. My heart’s in great shape, ticking away fine, squeezing and pumping great. It was not that. It was a pulmonary problem involving malignancy. So I’m gonna be gone the next couple days as we figure out the treatment course of action and have further testing done. But as I said, I’m gonna be here as often as I can.

‘And as is the case with everybody who finds themselves in this circumstance, you just want to push ahead and try to keep everything as normal as you can, which is something that I’m going to try to do. But I felt that I had to tell you because that’s the kind of relationship I feel like I have with those of you in this audience. I say it every Christmas, which is what I feel more thankful than as Thanksgiving.

‘And I feel thankful at Thanksgiving, but Christmas it really gets to me. But over the years, a lot of people have been very nice telling me how much this program has meant to them. But whatever that is, it pales in comparison to what you all have meant to me. And I can’t describe this. But I know you’re there every day. I can see you. It’s strange how, but I know you’re there.

‘I know you’re there in great numbers, and I know that you understand everything I say. The rest of the world may not when they hear it expressed a different way, but I know that you do. You’ve been one of the greatest sources of confidence that I’ve had in my life. So I hope I will be talking about this as little as necessary in the coming days.

‘But we’ve got a great bunch of doctors, a great team assembled. We’re at full-speed ahead on this, and it’s just now a matter of implementing what we are gonna be told later this week. So I’ll be back here. I hope I’ll be back Thursday. If not, it will be as soon as I can — and know that every day I’m not here, I’ll be thinking about you and missing you. Thank you very much.’

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7962489/Rush-Limbaugh-69-reveals-diagnosed-advanced-lung-cancer.html

Rush Limbaugh

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Rush Limbaugh
Rush Limbaugh by Gage Skidmore.jpg

Limbaugh in 2019
Born
Rush Hudson Limbaugh III

January 12, 1951 (age 69)

Nationality American
Alma mater Southeast Missouri State University (did not graduate)
Occupation Radio host, political commentator
Years active 1967–present
Net worth US$500 million (2016)
Spouse(s)
Roxy Maxine McNeely
(m. 1977; div. 1980)
Michelle Sixta
(m. 1983; div. 1990)
Marta Fitzgerald
(m. 1994; div. 2004)
Kathryn Rogers (m. 2010)
Website rushlimbaugh.com

Rush Hudson Limbaugh III (/ˈlɪmbɔː/ LIM-baw; born January 12, 1951) is an American radio personality, conservative political commentator, author, and former television show host. He is best known as the host of his long running radio show The Rush Limbaugh Show, which entered national syndication on AM and FM radio stations in 1988. The show has aired live from Limbaugh’s home studio in West Palm Beach, Florida since 1996. Limbaugh began his career in 1967 as a radio DJ at various stations in Pittsburgh and Missouri. After a brief hiatus, Limbaugh returned to radio in 1984 at KFBK-AM in Sacramento, California, adopting a talk, political commentary, and listener phone-in format to his show. In 1988, Limbaugh started at WABC-AM in New York City where he became a prominent media figure.

In addition to his radio show, Limbaugh hosted a national television show from 1992 to 1996. He has written seven books; his first two, The Way Things Ought to Be (1992) and See, I Told You So (1993), made The New York Times Best Seller list. Limbaugh is among the highest-paid radio figures. In 2008, he signed an eight-year deal with Clear Channel Communications worth $400 million to continue his radio show on its network.[1] In 2018, Forbes listed his earnings at $84.5 million [2], up slightly from 2017 when he was ranked as the 11th highest-earning celebrity.[3] In 2015, Talkers Magazine estimated that Limbaugh’s show attracted a cumulative weekly audience of 13.25 million listeners to become the most-listened-to radio show in the US.[4][5] Limbaugh has mentioned his audience has continued to grow to 14 million listeners each day and 27 million each week.[6] He is a critic of liberalism in the US and liberal bias in the widespread media.

Contents

Early life

Limbaugh was born on January 12, 1951 in Cape Girardeau, Missouri to parents Rush Hudson Limbaugh Jr. and Mildred Carolyn (née Armstrong) Limbaugh. He and his younger brother David were born into the Limbaugh family; his father was a lawyer and a U.S. fighter pilot who served in the China Burma India Theater of World War II. His mother was from Searcy, Arkansas. The name “Rush” was originally chosen for his grandfather to honor the maiden name of a family member, Edna Rush.[7]

Limbaugh is partly of German ancestry.[8] The family includes many lawyers, including his grandfather, father and brother; his uncle, Stephen N. Limbaugh Sr., was a federal judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. His cousin, Stephen N. Limbaugh Jr., is a judge in the same court, appointed by George W. Bush. Limbaugh’s grandfather, Rush Limbaugh Sr., was a Missouri prosecutor, judge, special commissioner, member of the Missouri House of Representatives in the 1930s and longtime president of the Missouri Historical Society.[9]

In 1969, Limbaugh graduated from Cape Girardeau Central High School.[citation needed] He played football.[10][11] During this time, at age 16 he worked his first radio job at KGMO-AM, a local radio station in Cape Girardeau. He used the airname Rusty Sharpe having found “Sharpe” in a telephone book.[7][12] Limbaugh later cited Chicago DJ Larry Lujack as a major influence on him, “the only person I ever copied.”[13] Because of his parents’ desire to see him attend college, he enrolled at Southeast Missouri State University but dropped out after two semesters. According to his mother, “he flunked everything […] he just didn’t seem interested in anything except radio.”[7][14]Biographer Zev Chafets believes that a large part of Limbaugh’s life has been dedicated to gaining his father’s respect and approval.[15]

Career

1971–1988: Early radio career

In February 1971, after dropping out of university, the 20-year-old Limbaugh accepted an offer to DJ at WIXZ-AM, a Top 40 station in McKeesport, Pennsylvania. He adopted the airname “Bachelor Jeff” Christie and worked afternoons before moving to morning drive.[16] The station’s general manager compared Limbaugh’s style at this time to “early Imus.”[17] In 1973, after eighteen months at WIXZ, Limbaugh was fired from the station due to “personality conflict” with the program director. He then started a nighttime position at KQV-AM in Pittsburgh, succeeding Jim Quinn.[18] In late 1974, Limbaugh was dismissed after new management put pressure on the program director to fire him. Limbaugh recalled the general manager telling him that he would never land success as an air personality and suggested a career in radio sales.[19] After rejecting his only offer at the time, a position in Neenah, Wisconsin, Limbaugh returned to living with his parents in Cape Girardeau.[18] During this time, he became a lifelong fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers.[20][21][22]

In 1975, Limbaugh began an afternoon show at the Top 40 station KUDL in Kansas City, Missouri. He soon became the host of a public service talk program that aired on weekend mornings which allowed him to develop his style and present more controversial ideas.[23] In 1977, he was let go from the station but remained in Kansas City to start an evening show at KFIX. The stint was short-lived, however, and disagreements with management led to his dismissal weeks after.[24] By this time, Limbaugh had become disillusioned with radio and felt pressure to pursue a different career. He looked back on himself as “a moderate failure […] as a deejay”.[25] In 1979, he accepted a part-time role in group sales for the Kansas City Royals baseball team which developed into a full-time position as director of group sales and special events. He worked from the Royals Stadium.[26] There he developed a close friendship with then-Royals star third baseman and future Hall of Famer George Brett; the two remain close friends.[27] Limbaugh claimed that business trips to Europe and Asia during this time developed his conservative views as he considered these countries having lower standards of living than the US.[28]

In November 1983, Limbaugh returned to radio with a year’s stint at KMBZ-AM in Kansas City. He decided to drop his on-air moniker and broadcast under his real name.[29] He was fired from the station, but weeks later he landed a spot on KFBK-AM in Sacramento, California, replacing Morton Downey Jr. The show launched on October 14, 1984.[30] The repeal of the Fairness Doctrine—which had required that stations provide free air time for responses to any controversial opinions that were broadcast—by the FCC on August 5, 1987 meant stations could broadcast editorial commentary without having to present opposing views. Daniel Henninger wrote, in a Wall Street Journal editorial, “Ronald Reagan tore down this wall (the Fairness Doctrine) in 1987 … and Rush Limbaugh was the first man to proclaim himself liberated from the East Germany of liberal media domination.”[31]

1988–1990s: WABC New York City and syndication

Limbaugh at The Phil Donahue Show in 1991

In July 1988, after his success in Sacramento caught the attention of former ABC Radio President Edward McLaughlin, Limbaugh started a new show at WABC-AM in New York City.[32] He debuted just weeks after the Democratic National Convention, and just weeks before the Republican National Convention. Limbaugh’s radio home in New York City was the talk-formatted WABC (AM), and this remained his flagship station for many years, even after Limbaugh moved to West Palm Beach, Fla., from where he continues to broadcast his show.[7] Limbaugh’s show moved on January 1, 2014 to WABC’s cross-town rival WOR (AM), its current New York outlet.[citation needed]

By 1990, Limbaugh had been on his Rush to Excellence Tour, a series of personal appearances in cities nationwide, for two years. For the 45 shows he completed that year alone, he was estimated to make around $360,000.[13]

In December 1990, journalist Lewis Grossberger wrote in The New York Times that Limbaugh had “more listeners than any other talk show host” and described Limbaugh’s style as “bouncing between earnest lecturer and political vaudevillian.”[13] Limbaugh’s rising profile coincided with the Persian Gulf War, and his support for the war effort and his relentless ridicule of peace activists. The program was moved to stations with larger audiences, eventually being broadcast on over 650 radio stations nationwide.

In 1992, Democrat Bill Clinton was elected president of the United States. Limbaugh satirized the policies of Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton, as well as those of the Democratic Party. When the Republican Party won control of Congress in the 1994 midterm elections, the freshman Republican class awarded Limbaugh an honorary membership in their caucus believing he had a role in their success.[33]

2000s

Limbaugh had publicized personal difficulties in the 2000s. In late 2001, he acknowledged that he had become almost completely deaf, although he continued his show. He was able to regain much of his hearing with the help of a cochlear implant in 2001.

In 2003, Limbaugh had a brief stint as a professional football commentator with ESPN. He resigned a few weeks into the 2003 NFL season after making comments about the press coverage for quarterback Donovan McNabb that caused controversy and accusations of racism on the part of Limbaugh. His comment about McNabb was:

I don’t think he’s been that good from the get-go. I think what we’ve had here is a little social concern in the NFL. I think the media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well. They’re interested in black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well. I think there’s a little hope invested in McNabb and he got a lot of credit for the performance of his team that he really didn’t deserve. The defense carried this team.[34]

The sportwriter Peter King construed the comment as “boneheaded”.[35] The sports analyst Allen Barra wrote Limbaugh’s viewpoint was shared by “many football fans and analysts” and “it is … absurd to say that the sports media haven’t overrated Donovan McNabb because he’s black”.[36]

In 2003, Limbaugh stated that he was addicted to pain medication, and sought treatment.[37] In April 2006, Limbaugh turned himself in to authorities, on a warrant issued by the Palm Beach County state attorney‘s office, and was arrested “on a single charge of prescription fraud“.[38] His record was later expunged.[39]

2010s

In 2013, news reports indicated that Cumulus Media, some of whose stations carried Limbaugh’s program in certain major markets, including New York, ChicagoDallasWashington D.C. and Detroit, was considering dropping his show when its contract with Limbaugh expired at the end of that year, reportedly because the company believed that its advertising revenues had been hurt by listener reaction to controversial Limbaugh comments.[40] Limbaugh himself said that the reports were overblown and that it was a matter of routine dollars-and-cents negotiations between Cumulus and his network syndication partner, Premiere Networks, a unit of Clear Channel Communications. Ultimately, the parties reached agreement on a new contract, with Limbaugh’s show moving from its long-time flagship outlet in New York, the Cumulus-owned WABC, to the latter’s cross-town rival, the Clear Channel-owned WOR, starting January 1, 2014, but remaining on the Cumulus-owned stations it was being carried on in other markets.[40]

The Rush Limbaugh Show

Limbaugh’s radio show airs for three hours each weekday beginning at noon Eastern Time on both AM and FM radio. The program is also broadcast worldwide on the Armed Forces Radio Network.

Radio broadcasting shifted from AM to FM in the late 1970s because of the opportunity to broadcast music in stereo with better fidelity. Limbaugh’s show was first nationally syndicated in August 1988, in a later stage of AM’s decline. Limbaugh’s popularity paved the way for other conservative talk radio programming to become commonplace on AM radio. The show increased its audience in the 1990s to the extent that even some FM stations picked it up, even though AM’s poor sound quality and lack of stereo make AM preferable for a talk show like Limbaugh’s. As of January 2019 about half of Limbaugh’s affiliate stations are on the FM dial.

In March 2006, WBAL in Baltimore became the first major market radio station in the country to drop Limbaugh’s nationally syndicated radio program.[41] In 2007, Talkers magazine again named him No. 1 in its “Heavy Hundred” most important talk show hosts.

Limbaugh frequently mentions the EIB (Excellence In Broadcasting) Network, trademarked in 1990. In the beginning, his show was co-owned and first syndicated by Edward F. McLaughlin, former president of ABC, who founded EFM Media in 1988, with Limbaugh’s show as his first product. In 1997, McLaughlin sold EFM to Jacor Communications, which was ultimately bought up by Clear Channel Communications. Today, Limbaugh owns a majority of the show, which is syndicated by the Premiere Radio Networks.

According to a 2001 article in U.S. News & World Report, Limbaugh had an eight-year contract, at the rate of $31.25 million a year.[42] In 2007, Limbaugh earned $33 million.[43] A November 2008 poll by Zogby International found that Rush Limbaugh was the most trusted news personality in the nation, garnering 12.5 percent of poll responses.[44]

Limbaugh signed a $400 million, eight-year contract in 2008 with what was then Clear Channel Communications, making him the highest-paid broadcaster on terrestrial radio. On August 2, 2016, Limbaugh signed a four-year extension of the 2008 contract.[45] At the announcement of the extension, Premiere Radio Networks and iHeartMedia announced that his show experienced audience growth with 18% growth in adults 25–54, 27% growth with 25–54 women, and ad revenue growth of 20% year over year.[45]

In 2018, Limbaugh was the world’s second (behind Howard Stern) highest-paid radio host, reportedly earning $84.5 million. [46]

On January 5, 2020, Limbaugh renewed his contract again. Though media reports said it was “a long-term” renewal, (with no length specified), according to Donald Trump it was a four-year deal.[47]

Television show

Limbaugh had a syndicated half-hour television show from 1992 through 1996, produced by Roger Ailes. The show discussed many of the topics on his radio show, and was taped in front of an audience. Rush Limbaugh says he loves doing his radio show,[48] but not a TV show.[49]

Other media appearances

Limbaugh’s first television hosting experience came March 30, 1990, as a guest host on Pat Sajak‘s CBS late-night talk show, The Pat Sajak Show.[50] ACT UP activists in the audience[51] heckled Limbaugh repeatedly; ultimately the entire studio audience was cleared. In 2001, Sajak said the incident was “legendary around CBS”.[52]

On December 17, 1993, Limbaugh appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman.[53] Limbaugh also guest-starred (as himself) on a 1994 episode of Hearts Afire. He appeared in the 1995 Billy Crystal film Forget Paris, and in 1998 on an episode of The Drew Carey Show.

In 2007, Limbaugh made cameo appearances on Fox News Channel‘s short-lived The 1/2 Hour News Hour in a series of parodies portraying him as the future President of the United States. In the parodies, his vice president was fellow conservative pundit Ann Coulter. That year, he also made a cameo in the Family Guy episode “Blue Harvest“, a parody of Star Wars in which Limbaugh can be heard on the radio claiming that the “liberal galactic media” were lying about climate change on the planet Hoth, and that Lando Calrissian‘s administrative position on Cloud City was a result of affirmative action. More recent Family Guy appearances have happened in the 2010 episode “Excellence in Broadcasting“, and 2011’s “Episode VI: It’s a Trap!“, a parody of Return of the Jedi.

Influence and legacy

Limbaugh has become widely recognized as one of the premiere voices of the conservative movement in the United States since the 1990s. In a 1992 letter, President Reagan thanked him, “for all you’re doing to promote Republican and conservative principles … [and] you have become the Number One voice for conservatism in our Country.”[54][55] In 1994, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives made Limbaugh an honorary member.[56]

In 1995, Rush Limbaugh was profiled on the PBS series Frontline in a one-hour documentary called “Rush Limbaugh’s America.” Limbaugh refused to be interviewed, but his mother, brother and many Republican supporters took part, as well as critics and opponents.[57]

Since the 1990s, Limbaugh has become known for his love of cigars, saying, “I think cigars are just a tremendous addition to the enjoyment of life.”[58] During his syndicated television program from 1992 to 1996, he also become known for wearing distinctive neckties. In response to viewer interest, Limbaugh launched a series of ties[59] designed primarily by his then-wife Marta.[60] Limbaugh is also known for using props, songs and photos to introduce his monologues on various topics. On his radio show, news about the homeless has often been preceded with the Clarence “Frogman” Henry song “Ain’t Got No Home.”[13] For a time, Dionne Warwick‘s song, “I Know I’ll Never Love This Way Again” preceded reports about people with HIV/AIDS.[61] These later became “condom updates” preceded by Fifth Dimension‘s song, “Up, Up and Away”.[13] For two weeks in 1989, on his Sacramento radio show, Limbaugh performed “caller abortions” where he would end a call suddenly to the sounds of a vacuum cleaner and a scream. He would then deny that he had “hung up” on the caller, which he had promised not to do. Limbaugh claims that he used this gag to illustrate “the tragedy of abortion” as well as to highlight the question of whether abortion constitutes murder.[62] During the Clinton administration, while filming his television program, Limbaugh referred to media coverage of Socks, the Clintons’ cat. He then stated, “But did you know there is also a White House dog?” and a picture of Chelsea Clinton was shown. When questioned about it, Limbaugh claimed that it was an accident and that without his permission some technician had put up the picture of Chelsea.[63][64]

Limbaugh was awarded the Marconi Radio Award for Syndicated Radio Personality of the Year by the National Association of Broadcasters five times – 1992, 1995, 2000, 2005, and 2014 (given by the National Association of Broadcasters).[65][66] He was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1993 and the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 1998.[67][68] By 2001, he inked a $285 million contract for eight years, which was renewed in 2008 for another eight years at $400 million.[69] By 2017, Limbaugh was the second highest paid radio host in the United States, earning an annual salary of $84 million – second only to Howard Stern.[70] Talkers Magazine ranked him as the greatest radio talk show host of all time in 2002,[71] and in 2017, he was the most-listened-to radio host in the United States with 14 million listeners.[72]

Limbaugh was awarded the inaugural William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence by the Media Research Center, a conservative media analysis group in 2007.[73] Conservative magazine Human Events also announced Limbaugh as their 2007 Man of the Year.[74]Later that same year, Barbara Walters featured Limbaugh as one of the most fascinating people of the year in a special that aired on December 4, 2008.[75]

On February 28, 2009, following his self-described “first address to the nation” lasting 90 minutes, carried live on CNN and Fox News and recorded for C-SPAN, Limbaugh received CPAC‘s “Defender of the Constitution Award”, a document originally signed by Benjamin Franklin, given to someone “who has stood up for the First Amendment … Rush Limbaugh is for America, exactly what Benjamin Franklin did for the Founding Fathers … the only way we will be successful is if we listen to Rush Limbaugh.”[76]

In his 2010 book, Rush Limbaugh: An Army of OneZe’ev Chafets cited Limbaugh as, “the brains and the spirit behind” the Republican Party’s resurgence in the 2010 midterm elections in the wake of the election of President Obama.[77] Chafets pointed, among others, to Sen. Arlen Specter‘s defeat, after being labeled by Limbaugh as a “Republican in Name Only”, and to Sarah Palin, whose “biggest current applause line – Republicans are not just the party of no, but the party of hell no – came courtesy of Mr. Limbaugh.” Limbaugh has argued the party-of-no Ronald Reagan conservative course for the Republicans vigorously, notably since six weeks after the Obama inauguration, and has been fundamental to, and encouraging to, the more prominently noted Tea Party movement.[78]

Rush Limbaugh was inducted into the Hall of Famous Missourians on May 14, 2012, in a secret ceremony announced only 20 minutes before it began to prevent negative media attention.[79] A bronze bust of Limbaugh is on display at the Missouri State Capitol building in Jefferson City, along with 40 other awardees. Limbaugh’s bust includes a security camera to prevent vandalism.[80][81]

Views

In his first New York Times best seller, Limbaugh describes himself as conservative, and is critical of broadcasters in many media outlets for claiming to be objective. He has criticized political centristsindependents, and moderate conservatives, claiming they are responsible for Democrat Barack Obama‘s victory over Republican John McCain in the 2008 United States presidential election and inviting them to leave the Republican Party. He calls for the adoption of core conservative philosophies in order to ensure the survival of the Republican Party.[82][83][84] Limbaugh is a proponent of American exceptionalism, and he often criticizes politicians he sees as rejecting this notion as unpatriotic or anti-American.[28]

Abortion

Limbaugh considers Roe v. Wade “bad law” and supports overturning it. He has compared support for abortion with Nazism, saying that abortion is “a modern-day holocaust” and that for feminists abortion is “a kind of sacrament for their religion/politics of alienation and bitterness”. During the 2008 Republican Party vice presidential candidate selection Limbaugh strongly opposed Tom Ridge due to his pro-abortion views.[85]

Minorities

Limbaugh is known for making controversial race-related statements with regard to African-Americans. He once opined that all newspaper composite pictures of wanted criminals resembled Jesse Jackson, and another time that “the NFL all too often looks like a game between the Bloods and the Crips without any weapons.”[86][87] While employed as what he describes as an “insult-radio” DJ, he used a derogatory racial stereotype to characterize a black caller he could not understand, telling the caller to “take that bone out of your nose and call me back,” although he expressed guilt over this when recounting it.[87] In March 2010, Limbaugh used the similarity of recently resigned Rep. Eric Massa‘s surname to the slavery-era African-American pronunciation of “master” to make a pun on the possibility that Gov. David PatersonNew York‘s first African-American governor, would pick Massa’s replacement: “Let’s assume you’re right [caller]. So, David Paterson will become the massa who gets to appoint whoever gets to take Massa’s place. So, for the first time in his life, Paterson’s gonna be a massa. Interesting, interesting.”[88]

Limbaugh has asserted that African-Americans, in contrast with other minority groups, are “left behind” socially because they have been systematically trained from a young age to hate the United States because of the welfare state.[89]

Limbaugh has argued that liberal politicians have encouraged immigration from Latin America but have discouraged their assimilation to deliberately create racial inequality to manipulate as a voter base, and that their continued admission will cause a collapse of representative democracy and rule of law in the United States. He has criticized the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 for this reason.[90]

Limbaugh, who has expressed anti-LGBT rhetoric in the past and views homosexual sexual practices as unhygienic, made serophobic statements about HIV/AIDS victims in the 1990s, and called the virus “Rock Hudson‘s disease” and “the only federally-protected virus.” Limbaugh claimed in 2007 while defending President Reagan’s response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic during the 1980s that it did not “spread to the heterosexual community.” Limbaugh, who still opposes homosexuality, has since called his statements “the single most regretful thing I have ever done.”[91][92] In 2013, Limbaugh commented on same-sex marriage by saying, “This issue is lost. I don’t care what the Supreme Court does. This is inevitable. And it’s inevitable because we lost the language on this. As far as I’m concerned, once we started talking about gay marriage, traditional marriage, opposite-sex marriage, same-sex marriage, hetero marriage, we lost. It was over.”[93][94]

Capital punishment

Limbaugh supports capital punishment. Referring to Robert Alton Harris, who was escorted to the gas chamber before receiving a fourth stay of execution, Limbaugh wrote “the only thing cruel about the death penalty is last-minute stays.”[95]

Sexual consent

Limbaugh dismisses the concept of consent in sexual relations. He views consent as “the magic key to the left.”[96] In 2014, Limbaugh criticized a policy at Ohio State University encouraging students to obtain verbal consent, saying “How many of you guys . . . have learned that ‘no’ means ‘yes’ if you know how to spot it?” The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee used these statements to advocate a boycott of Limbaugh’s show and advertisers, claiming that the statements were tantamount to an endorsement of sexual assault. Limbaugh denied this, and his spokesman Brian Glicklick and lawyer Patricia Glaser threatened a defamation lawsuit against the DCCC .[97]

Drug policy

Limbaugh has been an outspoken critic of what he sees as leniency towards criminal drug use in America. On his television show on October 5, 1995, Limbaugh stated, “too many whites are getting away with drug use” and illegal drug trafficking. Limbaugh proposed that the racial disparity in drug enforcement could be fixed if authorities increased detection efforts, conviction rates, and jail time for whites involved in illegal drugs.[98] He defended mandatory-minimum sentencing as an effective tool against the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980s.[99] Limbaugh has accused advocates of legalization of non-medical cannabis in the United States of hypocrisy due to their advocacy of tobacco control and backlash against electronic cigarettes, and compared the advocates for its legalization in Colorado to Big Tobacco.[100]

Environmental issues

Limbaugh is critical of environmentalism and climate science.[101] He rejects the scientific consensus on climate change, and the relationship between CFCs and depletion of the ozone layer, saying the scientific evidence does not support them.[95] Limbaugh has argued against the scientific consensus on climate change saying it is “just a bunch of scientists organized around a political proposition.”[102] He has also argued that projections of climate change are the product of ideologically-motivated computer simulations without the proper support of empirical data, a claim which has been widely debunked.[103][104] Limbaugh has used the term “environmentalist wacko” when referring to left-leaning environmental advocates.[105] As a rhetorical device, he has also used the term to refer to more mainstream climate scientists and other environmental scientists and advocates with whom he disagrees.[106] Limbaugh opposed pollution credits, including a carbon cap-and-trade system, as a way to disproportionately benefit major American investment banks, particularly Goldman Sachs, and claimed that it would destroy the American national economy.[107]

Limbaugh has written that “there are more acres of forestland in America today than when Columbus discovered the continent [sic] in 1492,” a claim that is disputed by the United States Forest Service and the American Forestry Association, which state that the precolonial forests have been reduced by about 24 percent or nearly 300 million acres.[108][109]

Limbaugh strongly opposed the proposed Green New Deal and its sponsor Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.[110]

Feminism

Limbaugh is critical of feminism, which he views as advancing only liberals and not women in general.[91] During an interview with Time magazine during the 1992 presidential election he stated that it “was established so as to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream of society.”[111] He has criticized Democratic congressmen calling for more women in Congress as hypocritical due to their opposition to female Republican candidates.[91] He has also regularly used the term “feminazi“, described by The New York Times in 1994 as one of his “favorite epithets for supporters of women’s rights”.[33] According to Limbaugh in 1992, for certain feminists, the “most important thing in life is ensuring that as many abortions as possible occur.”[112] He also used the term referring to the half-million large 2017 Women’s March as the “Deranged Feminazi March”.[113] He credited his friend Tom Hazlett, a professor of law and economics at George Mason University, with coining the term.[114]

Middle East

Limbaugh first rose to prominence in 1991 for his vocal support for the Persian Gulf War and criticism of opponents of the war. Limbaugh later accused the media, in particular Sam Donaldson, of deliberately overestimating in their predictions of the amount of American casualties caused by the war and overstating the Iraqi Armed Forces’s military preparedness.

Limbaugh was supportive of the Iraq War, and first suggested bombing Ba’athist Iraq in 2002 in revenge for the September 11 attacks.[115] Even after no Iraqi weapons of mass destruction were found, he supported theories that they had existed.[115] On the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse scandal, Limbaugh said, “This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation … And we’re going to ruin people’s lives over it and we’re going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time.”[116][117] Speaking at the 2009 Conservative Political Action Conference, Limbaugh accused Democratic congressional leaders such as Harry Reid of deliberately undermining the war effort.[118]

In 2018, Limbaugh speculated that evidence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction had been fabricated by the U.S. intelligence community to embarrass President Bush.[119]

During the 2019-20 Persian Gulf crisis, Limbaugh praised the 2020 Baghdad International Airport drone strike that resulted in the death of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps‘s commander Major General Qasem Soleimani, and accused opponents of the strike of supporting Iran over the United States.[120] On January 6, 2020, he held an interview with President Donald Trump on his show commending him for the strike.[121]

Trade

In 1993, Limbaugh supported the North American Free Trade Agreement, joking in response to claims that it would lead to a transfer of unskilled labor to Mexico that this would only leave the United States with better jobs.[122] During a 1993 televised debate against H. Ross Perot over NAFTA, Vice President Al Gore complimented Limbaugh as one of the “distinguished Americans” who pushed NAFTA forward in spite of the intense animosity between Limbaugh and the administration of President Bill Clinton.[123] He later became more critical of NAFTA and trade agreements in general, claiming that they had reduced national sovereignty by “subordinating” America to “world tribunals, like the World Trade Organization and the International Criminal Court and this kind of thing.”[124] He also claimed that promises to stem mass migration by invigorating the Latin American economy had failed.[125][124] He supported a renegotiation of NAFTA and the eventual United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement.[124]

Limbaugh defended the Trump tariffs and the China–United States trade war as a legitimate response to predatory Chinese trade practices and its Communist command economy.[126][127]

Barack Obama

Rush Limbaugh strongly opposed Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential election. Limbaugh predicted that Obama would be unable to win the election. On January 16, 2009, Limbaugh commented on the then-upcoming Obama presidency, “I hope he fails.”[128]Limbaugh later said that he wants to see Obama’s policies fail, not the man himself.[129] Speaking of Obama, Limbaugh said, “He’s my president, he’s a human being, and his ideas and policies are what count for me.”[128] Limbaugh later discouraged efforts to impeach Barack Obama as politically unrealistic.[130]

Limbaugh accused Obama of using his race to prevent criticism of his policies, and said he was successful in his first year in office only because conservative members of the 111th Congress feared accusations of racism.[131][132] Limbaugh featured a recurring skit in which his colleague James Golden, who described himself as an “African-American-in-good-standing-and-certified-black-enough-to-criticize-Obama guy,” appeared in a cameo as the “Official EIB Obama Criticizer.”[133]

Limbaugh blamed Obama’s foreign policy, including the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, for allowing the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.[134] Limbaugh also claimed that the 2012 Benghazi attack occurred due to a secret arms trafficking operation to the Syrian opposition authorized by Obama and coordinated by Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, speculating that the 2016 Democratic National Committee email leak would reveal evidence of it.[135] Limbaugh also criticized the Russian reset, seeing Vladimir Putin‘s rule in the Russian Federation as a thinly-veiled continuation of the Soviet Union and Marxism–Leninism.[28] He was also critical of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, including of Obama’s decision to ratify it as an executive agreement, and claims that it was used as a pretext for surveillance against Obama’s political opponents.[136] Limbaugh argued that side agreements of the JCPOA limited transparency and would obligate the United States to militarily defend Iran against an Israeli offensive, including a preemptive strike to prevent nuclear weapons development.[137]

During the West African Ebola virus epidemic, Limbaugh blamed Obama for allowing the spread of the disease to the United States in 2014, claiming that he should have stopped air travel to West Africa. He claimed that both the media and the government, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, deliberately downplayed its symptoms, expressing skepticism over the scientific consensus that the disease could be spread only through contact with bodily fluids and was not aerosol transmissible.[138] When David Quammencriticized the idea of ending air travel to West Africa by pointing out that Liberia was founded due to slavery in the United States on Anderson Cooper 360°, Limbaugh suggested in response that the Obama administration was deliberately allowing Ebola to be transmitted to the United States due to its guilt over slavery, stating “People at the highest levels of our government say ‘Why, why shouldn’t we get it? Why should only those three nations in Africa get it? We’re no better than they are.’ And they have this attitude, ‘Well, if they have it in Africa, by God, we deserve to get it, because they’re in Africa because of us and because of slavery.'”[139][140][141]

Donald Trump

Limbaugh with President Donald Trump at the Trump International Golf Club in 2019.

Limbaugh has been consistently supportive of the candidacy and presidency of Donald Trump, although he endorsed Ted Cruz during the 2016 Republican Party presidential primaries and took issue with Trump’s treatment of Cruz.[142] Limbaugh later criticized Cruz’s hesitance to endorse Trump after his nomination at the 2016 Republican National Convention, comparing it to Ted Kennedy’s lukewarm support of Jimmy Carter at the 1980 Democratic National Convention.[143] After the election he became supportive of deep-state conspiracy theories, claiming that the United States has entered a “Cold Civil War” in which the Democratic Party is attempting to illegitimately overturn the election results and that it is part of a trend of Democrats contesting elections beginning with the 2000 Florida election recount intended to eventually eliminate free elections in the United States.[144][145][146]

In December 2018, Limbaugh criticized Trump for preparing to accept a continuing resolution that would fund the government through February 8, 2019, but included no funding for a border wall on the Mexico–United States border, a campaign promise repeatedly emphasized by Trump.[147] Trump would subsequently make a surprise telephone call to Limbaugh announcing his intent to veto the bill, a decision that would lead to the 2018–19 United States federal government shutdown.[148] Limbaugh would go on to support the shutdown, stating “We have a president keeping promises left and right. And isn’t it interesting to see how trivial Washington thinks that is?”[149][150] After Trump declared the National Emergency Concerning the Southern Border of the United States and the 116th Congress failed in its attempt to override it, Limbaugh called on him to completely close the border with Mexico.[151]

Limbaugh has been dismissive of controversies over links between Trump associates and Russian officials. He claims that the FBI investigations of Michael Flynn and Paul Manafort as well as the subsequent Special Counsel investigation directed by Robert Mueller were orchestrated by Barack Obama and the Democratic Party to undermine the legitimacy of Trump’s presidency and constituted an illegal coup d’état.[152][153] Limbaugh claimed that George Papadopoulos was entrapped by the FBI, which he claims Joseph Mifsud was an informant for, through Stefan Halper as part of an “insurance policy” against Trump’s election by the Five Eyes intelligence alliance.[154]Limbaugh has advocated a full presidential pardon for all suspects indicted or convicted by the investigation.[151] After the release of the Mueller Report, he disputed its conclusion that WikiLeaks obtained the Democratic National Committee’s emails from the Russian government and its depiction of Donald Trump Jr.‘s Trump Tower meeting.[155] He claimed that allegations of obstruction of justice were leveled at Trump due to the Report’s conclusion that Trump did not directly collude with Russian officials and that Trump’s intent to fire Mueller and Attorney General Jeff Sessions were legitimate.[153]

Limbaugh supported the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity as well as Trump’s claims that he lost the popular vote due to voter impersonation by illegal immigrants.[156]

After the House of Representatives commenced a formal impeachment inquiry against President Trump due to the scandal over a 2019 telephone call to Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky pressuring his government to prosecute Biden shortly after a freeze of military aid, Limbaugh argued that the two events were unrelated since Trump had made a decision to withhold military funds a month in advance. He additionally claimed that Trump’s desire for the Ukrainian government to prosecute Biden was legally justified by a 1999 mutual legal assistance treaty with Ukraine and “was following the law to the letter when it comes to unearthing the long-standing corruption that has swirled in Ukraine and allegedly involves powerful Democrats like Joe Biden.”[144][157]

Alleging false flag attacks

In 2010, after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Limbaugh speculated on his show that eco-terrorists deliberately destroyed the oil well to justify President Obama’s deepwater drilling moratorium.[158] Limbaugh also claimed that the media was exaggerating the environmental effects of the disaster.[159]

After the Unite the Right rally and vehicle-ramming attack in Charlottesville, Virginia, Limbaugh defended Trump’s controversial response to the rally and claimed that the violence had been provoked by Black Lives Matter activists, Antifa, and Robert Creamer.[160] He also claimed without evidence that the police response had been deliberately restrained by Terry McAuliffe as a botched attempt to start a presidential bid in the 2020 Democratic Party presidential primaries, and that it was part of a campaign by “international financiers” such as George Soros to start a second civil war in the United States to remove its status as a global superpower.[161][162][163] After attention on Trump’s comments renewed when Joe Biden criticized them in the announcement of his 2020 presidential campaign, Limbaugh again defended them by repeating claims that some of the protesters were not white supremacists and were protesting the removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee.[164]

Limbaugh claimed that the October 2018 United States mail bombing attempts were perpetuated as a false-flag operation to draw public attention away from Central American migrant caravans.[165][166] He reiterated these claims two weeks after the arrest of the primary suspect Cesar Sayoc, a registered Republican.[167][168]

On his show, Limbaugh has said that the Christchurch mosque shootings of March 2019 may have been a false-flag operation. Limbaugh described “an ongoing theory” that the shooter was actually “a leftist” trying to smear the right. Despite providing no source or evidence, Limbaugh continued: “… you can’t immediately discount this. The left is this insane, they are this crazy.”[169][170]

Controversies and claims of inaccuracy

The July–August 1994 issue of Extra!, a publication of Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), alleges 50 different inaccuracies and distortions in Limbaugh’s commentary.[171][172] Comedian Al Franken, who later became a Senator, wrote a satirical book (Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations) in which he accused Limbaugh of distorting facts to serve his own political biases.[173]

Of Limbaugh’s controversial statements and allegations they have investigated, Politifact has rated 84% as ranging from “Mostly False” to “Pants-On-Fire” (a signification for extremely false), with 5% of Limbaugh’s contested statements rising to the level of “Mostly True” and 0% rated “True.”[174] These debunked allegations by Limbaugh include suggestions that the existence of gorillas disproves the theory of evolution, that Ted Kennedy sent a letter to Soviet General Secretary Yuri Andropov seeking to undercut President Reagan, that a recent lack of hurricanes disproves climate change, and that President Obama wanted to mandate circumcision.[175][176][177][178]

Limbaugh has been criticized for inaccuracies by the Environmental Defense Fund. A defense fund report authored by Princeton University endowed geoscience professor Michael Oppenheimer and professor of biology David Wilcove lists 14 significant scientific facts that, the authors allege, Limbaugh misrepresented in his book The Way Things Ought to Be.[179] The authors conclude that “Rush Limbaugh … allows his political bias to distort the truth about a whole range of important scientific issues.”

On October 14, 2011, Limbaugh questioned the U.S. military initiative against Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), based on the assumption that they were Christians. “They are fighting the Muslims in Sudan. And Obama has sent troops, United States troops to remove them from the battlefield, which means kill them.” Upon learning about the accusations leveled against Kony, which included kidnapping whole schools of young children for use as child soldiers, Limbaugh stated that he would research the group.[180][181]The show’s written transcript on his website was not changed.[181][182]

Michael J. Fox

In October 2006, Limbaugh said Michael J. Fox, who suffers from Parkinson’s disease, had exaggerated the effects of his affliction in a political TV advertisement advocating for funding of stem cell research. Limbaugh said that Fox in the ad had been “shameless” in “moving all around and shaking”, and that Fox had not taken “his medication or he’s acting, one of the two”.[183] Fox said “the irony of it is I was too medicated,”[184] adding that there was no way to predict how his symptoms would manifest. Limbaugh said he would apologize to Fox “bigly, hugely … if I am wrong in characterizing his behavior on this commercial as an act.”[185] In 2012, Fox said Limbaugh in 2006 had acted on “bullying instincts” when “he said I faked it. I didn’t fake it,” and said Limbaugh’s goal was to have him marginalized and shut down for his stem cell stance.[186]

Phony soldiers

In 2007, Media Matters‘ reported that Limbaugh had categorized Iraq War veterans opposed to the war as “the phony soldiers.” Limbaugh later said that he was speaking of Jesse MacBeth, a soldier who falsely claimed to have been decorated for valor but, in fact, had never seen combat. Limbaugh said Media Matters was trying to smear him with out-of-context and selectively edited comments. After Limbaugh published what he claimed was the entire transcript of phony soldiers discussion, Media Matters said that over a minute and 30 seconds of the transcript was omitted without “notation or ellipsis to indicate that there is, in fact, a break in the transcript.”[187][188] Limbaugh said during the minute and a half gap Media Matters had pointed out, he was waiting for relevant ABC news copy on the topic, and the transcript and audio edits were “for space and relevance reasons, not to hide anything.”[189] Senator Harry Reid and 41 Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, signed a letter asking the CEO of Clear Channel to denounce Limbaugh. Instead, he gave the letter to Limbaugh to auction. It raised over $2 million for the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation.[190]

Sandra Fluke

On February 29, 2012, Limbaugh, while talking about contraceptive mandates, included remarks about law student Sandra Fluke as a “slut” and “prostitute.” Limbaugh was commenting on Fluke’s speech the previous week to House Democrats in support of mandating insurance coverage for contraceptives. Limbaugh made numerous similar statements over the next two days, leading to the loss of 45[191] to “more than 100”[192] local and national sponsors and Limbaugh’s apology on his show for some of his comments. Susan McMillan Emry co-organized a public relations campaign called Rock the Slut Vote as a response to Limbaugh’s remarks.[193]

Charitable work

Leukemia and lymphoma telethon

Limbaugh holds an annual fundraising telethon called the “EIB Cure-a-Thon”[194] for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.[195] In 2006, the EIB Cure-a-Thon conducted its 16th annual telethon, raising $1.7 million,[196] totaling over $15 million since the first cure-a-thon.[197]According to Leukemia and Lymphoma Society annual reports, Limbaugh personally contributed between $100,000 and $499,999 from 2000–2005 and 2007,[198] and Limbaugh said that he contributed around $250,000 in 2003, 2004 and 2005.[199] NewsMax reported Limbaugh donated $250,000 in 2006,[200] and the Society’s 2006 annual report placed him in the $500,000 to $999,999 category.[198] Limbaugh donated $320,000 during the 2007 Cure-a-Thon,[201] which the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society reported had raised $3.1 million.[202] On his radio program April 18, 2008, Limbaugh pledged $400,000 to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society after being challenged by two listeners to increase his initial pledge of $300,000.[203]

Marine Corps–Law Enforcement Foundation

Limbaugh conducts an annual drive to help the Marine Corps–Law Enforcement Foundation collect contributions to provide scholarships for children of Marines and law enforcement officers and agents who have died in the line of duty.[204][205] The foundation was the beneficiary of a record $2.1 million eBay auction in October 2007 after Limbaugh listed for sale a letter critical of him signed by 41 Democratic senators and pledged to match the selling price.[206] With the founding of his and his wife’s company Two if by Tea, they pledged to donate at least $100,000 to the MC–LEF beginning in June 2011.[207]

Tunnel to Towers Foundation

In July 2019 Nike announced a special Fourth of July edition of their Air Max 1 Quick Strike sneaker that featured the thirteen-star Betsy Ross flag. The company withdrew the sneaker after their spokesman Colin Kaepernick raised concerns that the symbol represented an era of black enslavement.[208] In response Limbaugh’s radio program introduced a t-shirt imprinted “Stand up for Betsy Ross” with sale proceeds to benefit the Tunnel to Towers Foundation. As of December 2019 the sales have earned over $5M USD for the foundation.[209]

Personal life

Limbaugh has had four marriages, three divorces, and no children.[210] He was first married at the age of 26 to Roxy Maxine McNeely, a sales secretary at radio station WHB in Kansas City, Missouri. The couple married at the Centenary United Methodist Church in Limbaugh’s hometown of Cape Girardeau on September 24, 1977.[211] McNeely filed for divorce in March 1980, citing “incompatibility.” They were formally divorced on July 10, 1980.[7]

In 1983, Limbaugh married Michelle Sixta, a college student and usherette at the Kansas City Royals Stadium Club. They divorced in 1990, and she remarried the following year.[7]

On May 27, 1994, Limbaugh married Marta Fitzgerald, a 35-year-old aerobics instructor whom he met on the online service CompuServe in 1990.[212] They married at the house of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who officiated.[213] The couple separated on June 11, 2004.[214] Limbaugh announced his divorce on the air. It was finalized in December 2004.[215] In September 2004, Limbaugh became romantically involved with then-CNN news anchor Daryn Kagan; the relationship ended in February 2006.[216]

Limbaugh has lived in Palm Beach since 1996. A friend recalls that Limbaugh “fell in love with Palm Beach … after visiting her over Memorial Day weekend in 1995.”[217] Unlike New York, Florida does not tax income, the stated reason Limbaugh moved his residence and established his “Southern Command”.[218]

On December 30, 2009, while vacationing in HonoluluHawaii, Limbaugh was admitted to Queen’s Medical Center with intense chest pains. His doctors attributed the pain to angina pectoris.[219]

He dated Kathryn Rogers, a party planner from Florida, for three years[220] before he married her on June 5, 2010.[221][222] During the wedding reception after the ceremony, Elton John entertained the wedding guests for a reported $1 million fee; however, Limbaugh himself denied that the $1 million figure was accurate on his September 7, 2010, radio show.[223][224]

Through a holding company, KARHL Holdings (KARHL meaning “Kathryn and Rush Hudson Limbaugh”), Limbaugh launched a line of bottled iced tea beverages called “Two if by Tea”,[225] a play on the line from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow‘s “Paul Revere’s Ride” “one if by land, two if by sea”. KARHL Holdings features a Rush Revere website where children can send notes to Liberty, the time-traveling, talking horse.[226]

Prescription drug addiction

On October 3, 2003, the National Enquirer reported that Limbaugh was being investigated for illegally obtaining the prescription drugs oxycodone and hydrocodone. Other news outlets quickly confirmed the investigation.[227] He admitted to listeners on his radio show on October 10, 2003, that he was addicted to prescription painkillers and stated that he would enter inpatient treatment for 30 days, immediately after the broadcast.[228] Limbaugh stated his addiction to painkillers resulted from several years of severe back pain heightened by a botched surgery intended to correct those problems.

A subsequent investigation into whether Limbaugh had violated Florida’s doctor shopping laws was launched by the Palm Beach State Attorney, which raised privacy issues when investigators seized Limbaugh’s private medical records looking for evidence of crimes. Roy Black, one of Limbaugh’s attorneys, stated that “Rush Limbaugh was singled out for prosecution because of who he is. We believe the state attorney’s office is applying a double standard.”[229] On November 9, 2005, following two years of investigations, Assistant State Attorney James L. Martz requested that the court set aside Limbaugh’s doctor–patient confidentiality rights and allow the state to question his physicians.[230] Limbaugh’s attorney opposed the prosecutor’s efforts to interview his doctors on the basis of patient privacy rights, and argued that the prosecutor had violated Limbaugh’s Fourth Amendment rights by illegally seizing his medical records. The American Civil Liberties Union issued a statement in agreement and filed an amicus curiae brief in support of Limbaugh.[231][232] On December 12, 2005, Judge David F. Crow delivered a ruling prohibiting the State of Florida from questioning Limbaugh’s physicians about “the medical condition of the patient and any information disclosed to the health care practitioner by the patient in the course of the care and treatment of the patient.”[233]

On April 28, 2006, a warrant was issued for his arrest on the charge of doctor shopping. According to Teri Barbera, spokeswoman for the sheriff, during his arrest, Limbaugh was booked, photographed, and fingerprinted, but not handcuffed. He was then released after about an hour on $3,000 bail.[234][235][236] After his surrender, he filed a “not guilty” plea to the charge. Prosecutors explained that the charges were brought after they discovered he received about 2,000 painkillers, prescribed by four doctors in six months, at a pharmacy near his Palm Beach mansion. In 2009, after three years of prolonged discussion regarding a settlement, prosecutors agreed to drop the charge if Limbaugh paid $30,000 to defray the cost of the investigation, completed an 18-month therapy regimen with his physician, submitted to random drug testing, and gave up his right to own a firearm for eighteen months.[237] Limbaugh agreed to the settlement, though he continued to maintain his innocence of doctor shopping and asserted that the state’s offer resulted from a lack of evidence supporting the charge.[238]

Before his addiction became known, Limbaugh had condemned illegal drug use on his television program, stating that “Drug use, some might say, is destroying this country … And so if people are violating the law by doing drugs, they ought to be accused and they ought to be convicted and they ought to be sent up.”[239][240]

Viagra incident

In June 2006, Limbaugh was detained by drug enforcement agents at Palm Beach International Airport. Customs officials confiscated Viagra from Limbaugh’s luggage as he was returning from the Dominican Republic. The prescription was not in Limbaugh’s name.[241]After he was released with no charges filed, Limbaugh joked about the incident on his radio show, claiming that he got the Viagra at the Clinton Library and was told they were blue M&M’s. He also stated that “I had a great time in the Dominican Republic. Wish I could tell you about it.”[241]

Health issues

Rush Limbaugh has described himself as being “100 percent, totally deaf.”[242] In 2001, Limbaugh announced that he had lost most of his ability to hear: “I cannot hear television. I cannot hear music. I am, for all practical purposes, deaf – and it’s happened in three months.” He said that the condition was not genetic.[243] He was diagnosed with autoimmune inner ear disease (AIED) and medications failed to work. On December 19, 2001, doctors at the House Ear Clinic in Los Angeles were able to successfully restore a measure of his hearing through cochlear implant surgery. Limbaugh received a Clarion CII Bionic Ear.[244]

When questioned whether Limbaugh’s sudden hearing loss was caused by his addiction to opioids, his cochlear implant doctor, otolaryngologist Jennifer Derebery, said that it was possible but that there is no way to know for sure without performing tests that would destroy Limbaugh’s hearing completely. “We don’t know why some people, but apparently not most, who take large doses may lose their hearing”.[245]

In 2005, Limbaugh was forced to undergo “tuning” due to an “eye twitch,” an apparent side-effect of cochlear implants.[246]

On April 8, 2014, on his radio program, Limbaugh announced his decision to ‘go bilateral.’ “I’m going to get an implant on the right side,” he said.[247] After bilateral tuning, there was 100% improvement. “Coming from total deafness, it is miraculous! How can you not believe in God?” Limbaugh said in his national daily broadcast.[248]

Limbaugh was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer on January 20, 2020, after first experiencing shortness of breath on January 12.[249] He announced the diagnosis on air during his radio show on February 3; conceding that he would miss airtime to undergo treatment, he stated that he planned to continue the program “as normally and competently” as he could while undergoing treatment.[250]

Bibliography

In 1992, Limbaugh published his first book, The Way Things Ought to Be, followed by See, I Told You So, the following year. Both titles were number one on the New York Times Best Seller list for 24 weeks.[251] His first book was dictated by himself, and transcribed and edited by Wall Street Journal Journal writer John Fund.

In 2013, Limbaugh authored his first children’s book entitled, Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims: Time-Travel with Exceptional Americans. He received the Author of the Year Award from the Children’s Book Council for this work.[252] Limbaugh’s second children’s book was released the following year, entitled, Rush Revere and the First Patriots: Time-Travel with Exceptional Americans. This book was nominated as an author-of-the year finalist for the annual Children’s and Teen Choice Book Awards.[253] Limbaugh’s third children’s book was released later this same year, written with his wife, Kathryn, and entitled Rush Revere and the American Revolution. The Limbaugh’s dedicated this to the U.S. military and their families.[254]

References…

Sources

Further reading

  • Arkush, Michael (1993). Rush!. New York: Avon Books. ISBN 0-380-77539-5.
  • Davis, J. Bradford (1994). The Rise of Rush Limbaugh Toward the Presidency. Norcross, Ga.: MacArthur Publishing Group. ISBN 0-9642619-0-1.
  • Derych, Jim. Confessions of a Former Dittohead. Brooklyn, N.Y.: Ig Publishing. ISBN 0-9752517-8-3.
  • Evearitt, Daniel J. (1993). Rush Limbaugh and the Bible. Camp Hill, Pa.: Horizon House Publishers. ISBN 0-88965-104-3.
  • Franken, Al (1996). Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations. New York: Random House. ISBN 978-0-14-101841-6.
  • Jacobs, Donald Trent. The Bum’s Rush: The Selling of Environmental Backlash: Phrases and Fallacies of Rush Limbaugh. Boise, Idaho: Legendary Publishing Company. ISBN 0-9625040-5-X.
  • Keliher, Brian (1994). Flush Rush. Berkeley, Calif.: Ten Speed Press. ISBN 0-89815-610-6.
  • Kelly, Charles M. (1994). The Great Limbaugh Con: And Other Right-Wing Assaults on Common Sense. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Fithian Press. ISBN 1-56474-102-8.
  • King, D. Howard (1994). Rush to Us. New York: Windsor Publishing Company. ISBN 0-7860-0082-1.
  • Layne, Tom (2006). The Assassination of Rush Limbaugh. Kirkland, Wash.: Red Ginger Publishing Company. ISBN 0-9768515-0-4.
  • Mahurin, Cecil (1993). A Public Rebuttal to Rush Limbaugh. New York: Vantage Press. ISBN 0-533-10766-0.
  • Perkins, Ray Jr (1995). Logic and Mr. Limbaugh: A Dittohead’s Guide to Fallacious Reasoning. Chicago: Open Court Publishing. ISBN 0-8126-9294-2.
  • Rahman, Michael. Why Rush Limbaugh is Wrong, or: The Demise of Traditionalism and the Rise of Progressive Sensibility as Perceived. Santa Monica, Calif.: Mighty Pen Publishing. ISBN 0-9647470-0-6.
  • Rendall, Steven; Naureckas, JimCohen, Jeff (1995). The Way Things Aren’t: Rush Limbaugh’s Reign of Error: Over 100 Outrageously False and Foolish Statements from America’s Most Powerful Radio and TV Commentator. Written for FAIR. New York: The New Press. ISBN 1-56584-260-X.
  • Seib, Philip M. (1993). Rush Hour: Talk Radio, Politics, and the Rise of Rush Limbaugh. Fort Worth, Tex.: Summit Group. ISBN 1-56530-100-5.
  • Tucker, R. K. (1997). The Rules According to Rush: The American people vs. Rush Limbaugh. Chapel Hill, NC; Bowling Green, Ohio: OptimAmerica; Professional Press. ISBN 1-57087-339-9.
  • Varon, Charles (1997). Rush Limbaugh In Night School. New York: Dramatists Play Service. ISBN 0-8222-1534-9.

External links

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

 

 

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‘He will not change. And you know it’: Adam Schiff pleads for Republicans to remove Donald Trump as closing arguments end in impeachment trial – but defense attorney Ken Starr says prosecution just wants to make the 2016 election ‘null and void’

  • Each side wrapped up their closing arguments in Donald Trump’s trial
  • Both sides had two hours to finish arguing before the Senate 
  • ‘You can’t trust this president to do the right thing, not for one minute,’ Adam Schiff told senators 
  • ‘President Trump’s constitutional crimes, his crimes against the American people and the nation remain in progress,’ Rep. Val Demings said 
  • Demings led the Democrats’ main argument that Trump committed the two articles of impeachment
  • Republicans charged Democrats with playing politics 
  • ‘This was the first totally partisan presidential impeachment in our nation’s history,’ Trump’s personal attorney Jay Sekulow charged 
  • ‘At the end of the day, this is an effort to overturn the results of one election and to try to interfere in the coming election’ Pat Cipollone said
  • Trump’s lawyers argued Democrats were acting in a partisan way to try and overturn the 2016 election 
  • Trump is expected to be acquitted in the Republican-controlled Senate
  • Republicans have a 53-47 advantage in the Senate, meaning there’s nowhere near the two-thirds votes needed for Trump’s conviction in the Wednesday vote 

Adam Schiff made a passionate plea for the Senate to remove Donald Trump for office, arguing to senators it was the only way to stop his abuse of power, while defense attorney Ken Starr accused the Democrats of wanting to declare the 2016 election ‘null and void.

The dueling arguments played out on the Senate floor Monday afternoon ahead of Wednesday’s vote on whether to convict or acquit President Trump of the two articles of impeachment against him.

Schiff, the lead impeachment manager who the president has dubbed ‘Shifty Schiff,’ made the final case for his side as the odds were against them.

The president is expected to be acquitted in the Republican-controlled chamber where it would take a two-thirds vote to convict him.

'You can't trust this president to do the right thing, not for one minute,' Adam Schiff told senators

Both sides made their closing arguments in Donald Trump's impeachment trial on Monday

Schiff, in his 26-minute speech, warned senators the president can’t be trusted.

‘You can’t trust this president to do the right thing, not for one minute, not for one election, not for the sake of our country. You just can’t. He will not change. And you know it,’ he said.

He warned acquittal could bring about absolute power for Trump.

‘Trump could offer Alaska to the Russians in exchange for support in the next election or decide to move to Mar-a-Lago permanently and let Jared Kushner run the country, delegating to him the decision whether to go to war. Because those things are not necessarily criminal, this argument would allow he could not be impeached for such abuses of power. Of course this would be absurd. More than absurd, it would be dangerous,’ he added.

And he warned senators they could be the president’s next victim.

‘They’ll hack your opponents’ emails, mount a social media campaign to support you, announce investigations of your opponent to help you, and all for the asking. Leave Donald Trump in office after you have found him guilty and this is the future that you will invite,’ he said.

‘History will not be kind to Donald Trump. I think we all know that. Not because it will be written by Never-Trumpers but because whenever we have departed from the values of our nation we have come to regret it, and that regret is written all over the pages of our history,’ he said in a passionate final plea to the 100 senators who decide the president’s fate.

‘Every single vote, even a single vote by a single member can change the course of history. It is said that a single man or woman of courage makes a majority. Is there one among you who will say enough?,’ he added.

‘Truth matters little to him. What’s right matters even less. And decency matters not at all. I do not ask you to convict him truth or right or decency matter matters nothing to him but because we have proven our case and it matters to you. Truth matters to you. Right matters to you. You are decent. He is not who you are,’ he told the senators.

The president’s defense team focused on the politics with deputy White House counsel Patrick Philbin calling impeachment a ‘partisan political process.’

And White House Counsel Pat Cipollone asked the Senate to ‘end the era of impeachment once and for all.’

Rep. Val Demings made the Democrats case that President Trump committed the two articles of impeachment - abuse of power and obstruction of justice

President Trump has denied all charges

President Trump has denied all charges

Trump lawyer Sekulow plays video of Dems calling for impeachment

‘This was the first totally partisan presidential impeachment in our nation’s history,’ Trump’s personal attorney Jay Sekulow charged. ‘And it should be our last. What the House Democrats have done to this nation, to the constitution, to the office of the president, to the president himself and to this body is outrageous. They have cheapened the awesome power of impeachment.’

He played a video – complete with pulsing beat of ominous music – of an array of Democratic figures calling for the president’s impeachment back in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

Sekulow went on to add: ‘The bottom line is that the president’s opponents don’t like the president and they really don’t like his policies.’

Starr echoed an argument the president and his allies have long made: Democrats were trying to overturn the last presidential election.

He said a vote for impeachment would give the message that ‘your vote in the last election is hereby declared null and void. And by the way, we are not going to allow you – the American people – to sit in judgment on this president and his record.’

Cipollone made the same point and said the only conclusion the senators could come to was to impeach the president.

‘At the end of the day, the key conclusion, we believe the only conclusion based on the evidence and based on the articles of impeachment themselves and the Constitution, is that you must vote to acquit the president,’ Cipollone said. ‘At the end of the day, this is an effort to overturn the results of one election and to try to interfere in the coming election that begins today in Iowa.’

‘Leave the choice of the president to the American people,’ he said, referring to the upcoming November election.

And deputy White House counsel Patrick Philbin warned that a vote for impeachment could upset the balance of power between the executive and legislative branches.

He argued that anything a president does that Congress doesn’t like ‘and a time they don’t like can be treated as an impeachable offense. That’s an incredibly dangerous assertion. Because if it were accepted, it would fundamentally alter the balance between the different branches of our government,’ he said.

‘This was a purely partisan political process,’ Philbin said. ‘It was imposed by partisans in the House. It was done not to persuade anyone, to get to the truth or go by past presidents. It was done to get done by Christmas on a political timetable. And it’s not something this chamber should condone. That in itself provides a sufficient and substantial reason for rejecting the articles of impeachment.’

Ken Starr
Pat Cipollone

Jay Sekulow

Patrick Phiblin

President Trump’s attorneys – Ken Starr, Pat Cipollone, Jay Sekulow and Patrick Philbin – argued Democrats were acting in a partisan way to try and overturn the 2016 election

Democratic Rep. Val Demings of Florida outlined the role Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani played in the allegations against the president.

‘Donald Trump was the central player in the corrupt scheme assisted principally by his private attorney Rudy Giuliani,’ she said.

And she said he was still doing it.

‘As I stand here today, delivering the House’s closing argument, President Trump’s constitutional crimes, his crimes against the American people and the nation remain in progress,’ Demings said.

In her 20 minute argument, Demings made the most detailed case for Democrats.

She charged the president with trying to ‘cheat in the next election’ and alleged that he ‘weaponized our government.’ She told senators that Trump ‘violated his oath of office’ and committed a ‘grave abuse of power.’

Demings led the Democrats’ main argument that Trump committed the two articles of impeachment – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – and it warranted his conviction and removal from office.

‘The House has presented to you overwhelming and unconverted evidence that President Trump has committed grave abuses of power that harmed our national security and were intended to defraud our elections,’ she said.

She then went through the history of the Democrats’ central argument against the president – that he with held U.S. aid from the Ukraine in exchange for that country to investigate his political rivals, Joe and Hunter Biden.

She rewove the Democrats’ case, bringing together all the bits of the story that have played out over the House investigation and trial in the Senate: the freeze on aid to the Ukraine, the campaign against the U.S. ambassador, Trump’s July 25 phone call with the Ukrainian president that sparked the impeachment inquiry, and the work of Giuliani.

Demings, who was the first female police chief in Orlando before running for Congress, minced no words when it came to Giuliani’s actions in the Ukraine. The president’s personal attorney was running a shadow foreign policy with the country, State Department aides testified during the impeachment investigation, for the political benefit of the president.

She accused Giuliani of working with Ukrainians ‘to fabricate and promote phony investigations of wrongdoing’ against Joe Biden.

Schiff urges Senate to convict as he presents closing arguments
Rep. Demings didn't hold back when she talked about Rudy Giuliani's actions in the Ukraine

Rep. Demings didn’t hold back when she talked about Rudy Giuliani’s actions in the Ukraine

Demings brought up Giuliani's work with Lev Parnas, who faces charges of illegal campaign contributions to Trump

Rudy Giuliani and Lev Parnas together at the Trump International Hotel in Washington in September 2019

She retraced the House Democrats’ case, pointing out how Giuliani worked with his associates Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman to first get rid of then-U.S. Ambassador to the Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and then how Trump tried to get Giuliani a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Parnas and Fruman both face charges of illegal campaign contributions.

Demings then brought up Trump’s former National Security Adviser John Bolton, who Democrats wanted to call to testify but Senate Republicans defeated that proposal in 51-49 vote on Friday. Parnas has also said he would testify.

‘According to reports about Ambassador Bolton’s account, soon to be available if not to this body, then to bookstores near you, the president also unsuccessfully tried to get Bolton to call the new Ukrainian president to ensure he would meet with Giuliani. The desire for Ukraine to announce these phony investigations was for a clear and corrupt reason. Because President Trump wanted the political benefit of a foreign country announcing that it would investigate his rival,’ she said.

In his forth coming memoir, Bolton claimed the president told him U.S. aid to the Ukraine was being held up to pressure the country into investigating the Bidens.

Trump has denied the charge.

‘The desire for Ukraine to announce these phony investigations was for a clear and corrupt reason. Because President Trump wanted the political benefit of a foreign country announcing that it would investigate his rival. That is how we know, without a doubt, that the object of the president’s scheme was to benefit his re-election campaign. In other words, to cheat in the next election,’ Demings declared.

‘President Trump weaponized our government and the vast powers entrusted to him by the American people and the constitution to target his political rival and corrupt our precious elections,’ she said.

‘He put his personal interests over those of the country,’ she continued. ‘And he violated his oath of office in the process. But the president’s grave abuse of power did not end there. In conduct unparalleled in American history, once he got caught, President Trump engaged in categorical and indiscriminate obstruction of any investigation into his wrongdoing.’

And she said he acted guilty.

‘The president’s obstruction was unlawful and unprecedented, but it also confirmed his guilt. Innocent people don’t try to hide every document and witness, especially those that would clear them. That’s what guilty people do. That’s what guilty people do,’ she said.

Trump took to Twitter during the Democrats’ closing argument to repeat his complaint he was the victim of a ‘hoax.’

‘I hope Republicans & the American people realize that the totally partisan Impeachment Hoax is exacty that, a Hoax. Read the Transcripts, listen to what the President & Foreign Minister of Ukraine said (‘No Pressure’). Nothing will ever satisfy the Do Nothing, Radical Left Dems!,’ he wrote.

Democratic Rep. Jason Crowe made a similar argument about the reputation of the Senate, quoting from the Harry Potter book series.

‘The quote is from Professor Dumbledore, who said, it is our choices that show who we truly are for more than our abilities. This trial will soon be over, but there will be many choices for all of us in the days ahead, the most pressing of which is how each of us will decide to fulfill our oath. More than our words, our choices will show the world who we really are, what type of leaders we will be and what type of nation we will be,’ he said.

Closing arguments began Monday even as President Trump is expected to be acquitted in the Republican-controlled Senate.

But there is plenty of drama in the works leading up to Wednesday afternoon’s vote on the matter that is likely to have reverberations on relations between the two ends of Pennsylvania Avenue for the remainder of President Trump’s time in the White House.

Trump told Fox News in an interview that aired Sunday he could see the ‘hatred’ from Democrats. The president had strong words for his political foes and didn’t sound a hopeful tone about future relations between the two branches of government.

‘It’s pretty hard when you think about it because it’s been such, I use the word witch hunt – I use the word hoax,’ Trump said when asked about working with Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer after the trial’s conclusion.

‘I see the hatred,’ he added. ‘They don’t care about fairness. They don’t care about lying.’ 

Closing arguments began Monday in Donald Trump's impeachment trial - he's seen leaving for Mar-a-Lago on Friday with first lady Melania Trump

Trump said it will be hard to work with Speaker Nancy Pelosi after the trial

The president will be in the same room with Pelosi and Schumer before his trial ends, on Tuesday evening for his annual State of the Union address. The speaker will be seated behind him in the House chamber and Schumer will be in the audience during the joint session of Congress.

It’s unclear if the president will mention his trial in his remarks.

A senior administration official wouldn’t say when asked about it during a Friday briefing at the White House.

‘I’m not going to get ahead of what the president will say,’ the person said.

And Trump told reporters during his Super Bowl party at his West Palm Beach golf club Sunday night: ‘We’re really looking to giving a very very positive message’ when he gives his speech.

Trump – the head of the executive branch – and Pelosi – the powerful speaker of the House who can make or break his legislative agenda on Capitol Hill – will have to work together when the impeachment trial concludes.

Congress must pass a budget to fund the government before the end of the fiscal year in October and both sides have expressed an interest in lower prescription drug costs and working on infrastructure.

That move signaled a rapid conclusion of the trial was on hand for the president.

There will be four hours for closing arguments – two for the prosecution and two for Trump’s defense team.

Afterward, there will be time for senators to make remarks on the Senate floor about the case.

The final vote on Wednesday will conclude the Democrats’ three-month investigation into allegations Trump with held nearly $400 million in military aid to the Ukraine in exchange for that country to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden, his political rivals.

Trump denies the charges but House Democrats vote in December to charge him with two articles of impeachment: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Doug Jones

Three Democratic senators – Doug Jones of Alabama, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona – all represent states the president carried in the 2016 election and have stayed quiet about how they intend to vote on impeachment

A NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found the majority of voters believe that Trump abused his power and obstructed Congress, but they are split on whether he should be removed from office.

In the poll, released on Sunday, 46 per cent said the president should be removed from office while 49 per cent said he should remain.

Republicans have a 53-47 advantage in the Senate, meaning there’s nowhere near the two-thirds votes needed for Trump’s conviction and removal from office.

The focus of Wednesday’s vote, however, will be if the president gets a bipartisan all-clear.

Three Democratic senators – Doug Jones of Alabama, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona – all represent states the president carried in the 2016 election and have stayed quiet about how they intend to vote. 

Just one Democratic voting in his favor would give the president something to crow about.

And while Trump’s trial is rolling toward a close on Wednesday, the spectra of the Ukraine may not.

Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence panel chairman and lead Democratic impeachment manager, wouldn’t rule out subpoenaing John Bolton in the future.

Democrats wanted to hear from the president’s former National Security Adviser about excerpts published from his forth coming memoir.

‘I don’t want to comment to this point on what our plans may or may not be with respect to John Bolton,’ Schiff said Sunday on CBS’ ‘Face the Nation. ‘But I will say this: whether it’s before- in testimony before the House or it’s in his book or it’s in one form or another, the truth will come out as- will continue to come out.’

Schiff also said ‘there’s nothing that I can see that we could have done differently’ in presenting their case against the president to the Senate.

Adam Schiff wouldn't rule out subpoenaing John Bolton in the future

Democrats wanted to hear from John Bolton  about excerpts published from his forth coming memoir

Meanwhile, some Democrats are already shifting their attention to their next battle with the president: the November election.

Democrats finally begin voting for their party’s nominee on Monday when Iowa holds is caucuses – the first nominating contest.

Four contenders for the Democratic nomination – Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar and Michael Bennet – have missed out on valuable campaign time due to Trump’s trial.

And all will be back in Washington D.C. on Wednesday for the final vote on the president’s fate.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7961341/Closing-arguments-begin-TODAY-Donald-Trumps-impeachment-trial-heads-conclusion.html

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1118, August 1, 2018, Story 1: President Trump Congratulates Rush Limbaugh For Thirty Years Of Outstanding Talk Show — Videos — Story 2: Trump Rally in Florida — Promises Made Promises Kept — Taxes and Regulations Cut — Videos — Story 3: Federal Reserve Keeps Federal Funds Target Rate Unchanged a 1.75-2.0 Percent — Videos — Story 4: Trump Tweets To Attorney General Sessions on Closing Down Special Counsel Mueller Investigation or Rigged Witch Hunt! — Videos

Posted on August 2, 2018. Filed under: American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Breaking News, Budgetary Policy, Cartoons, Central Intelligence Agency, Communications, Congress, Constitutional Law, Corruption, Countries, Culture, Deep State, Defense Spending, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Independence, Law, Legal Immigration, Life, Lying, Media, Medicare, Monetary Policy, National Interest, National Security Agency, News, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Progressives, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Robert S. Mueller III, Rule of Law, Scandals, Senate, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Unemployment, United States Constitution, United States of America, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Weather, Welfare Spending, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

 

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Election season was clearly on the president's mind at his Monday rally, which featured a friendly crowd clad in Make America Great Again hats and t-shirtSee the source image

See the source image

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Story 1: President Trump Congratulates Rush Limbaugh For Thirty Years Of Outstanding Talk Show — Videos

audio 8/1/18 PRESIDENT TRUMP SURPRISES RUSH LIMBAUGH w/ PERSONAL PHONE CALL on 30th ANNIVERSARY

Rush Limbaugh talks Trump’s relationship with the news media

Rush Limbaugh ANALYSIS after Donald Trump WIN for President

Rush Limbaugh Interviews Donald Trump April 15,2011

Published on Apr 15, 2011

Donald Trump Teases a President Bid During a 1988 Oprah Show | The Oprah Winfrey Show | OWN

RUSH: So I have this note on the call screener computer: “On the hotline…” We don’t have a hotline. “On the hotline, you’re receiving a phone call in recognition of your anniversary broadcast. You’ll want to take this immediately.” Okay. So we’re going to the phones and we have a special guest. Who is it?

THE PRESIDENT: So, Rush, I just wanted to congratulate you on 30 years.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: This is your favorite president, and I think you are fantastic.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: I heard about it, and today’s the big day, 30 years. I wanted to call personally and congratulate you.

RUSH: I am floored. I… (laughing) I thought there was nothing anybody could do to surprise me today. I’ve been preparing for anything. Mr. President —

THE PRESIDENT: You’re a very special man, Rush, and you have people that love you. I’m one of them. But you’re a very, very special guy. What you do for this country, people have no idea how important your voice is. So I just wanted to personally make this one and I said, “I’ll even dial the number myself if I have to.”

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: But I just want to congratulate you. Thirty years in that tough business is incredible — and you’re stronger now than ever before.

RUSH: Well, I — I thank you so much. It’s such a thrill to hear from you.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, it’s a thrill to be on.

RUSH: I told you, any time you want to appear here, you are more than welcome. I don’t want to hound you by asking you because everybody’s doing that, trying to get you. But, man, this is great. I’m so flattered. While I have you, can I say something back at you here?

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, go ahead, Rush. Go ahead.

RUSH: Are you aware…? I have to think you are when you go to your rallies.

THE PRESIDENT: Right.

RUSH: Are you aware of what you mean to everybody who voted for you and I think a bunch of who didn’t who want to the next time around? People have invested their hopes and their futures in this country being made great again and saved in you. Are you…? When you’re alone — which you may not ever be. But when you’re alone in the White House, do you think about that? Do you ponder what you’ve come to mean to people?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I love these people. And, you know, you probably saw last night I was in Florida and we had 9,000 seats in the auditorium.

RUSH: Oh, yeah.

THE PRESIDENT: That was packed, and we had thousands outside and in these rooms all over the place. I guess they had at least 15,000, 18,000 people that couldn’t get in last night — which I hate. So we’re actually starting to put up big screens. I must tell you, it’s such an honor to me to see this. This love! I don’t know if you were able to see it last night, any of them. I mean, there’s such tremendous love. I’m going to Ohio on Saturday, and tomorrow I’m going to Pennsylvania, and it’s the same thing.

It’s like the enthusiasm — and part of it is that they’ve really been mistreated for so many years by the politicians. The country’s been mistreated. The trade deals were so bad. The taxes were so high. The tax cuts are so good; they’ve been so appreciated by so many people. The cut in regulations maybe is just as important as the tax cuts because businesses are hiring like they haven’t, like they’ve never hired before. And, you know, we have a more interesting stat: We have more people working in the United States today than at any time in our history. And it’s been so many different things are happening. So there’s a tremendous amount of love in the room, and I am aware of it; there’s no question about it.

RUSH: Mr. President, it was just a little over year and a half ago where your predecessor said that what is happening now couldn’t happen again, that those days were gone, that those jobs that were lost were not coming back. And he would tell audiences this. And look at what you’ve done with the entirety — seemingly the entirety — of Washington’s political class opposed to you. In a year and a half, you have reversed the direction the country was going. We have 4.1% economic growth. When you promised that, they accused you of misleading people because it couldn’t happen.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, that’s right, Rush. You have a lot of bad people in Washington. You knew that a long time ago. Frankly, before I knew it. I had no idea how evil some of them are, but you have a lot of great people too. And outside of Washington you have the greatest people in the world. And you’re right. You know, I’ve been saying 4%, but it should be much higher than that. You know, if you do good trade deals — which I will. You see what’s going on with China. You look at what’s going on.

I will tell you, NAFTA? They want to make a deal very badly. And, you know, we’re putting ’em back in shape. They’re horrible deals, the worst deals ever made by any country. You do that; you start lifting your GDP numbers way up also. Nobody ever ever talks about that. We’re doing 4.1% with bad trade deals. We have horrible trade deals. And our farmers, we’re gonna open up markets for them. You know, but they’re great patriots. They’re… I watch them all the time where they’re saying, “We trust our president.”

And, you know, they may take a short-term hit. But you look at farm and farming, it’s been going down for 15 years. Soybeans, five years before the election, was cut in half! The price was cut in half. I wasn’t there. So it’s going to… A lot of things are happening that are very exciting. And, you know, you look at the job numbers. You look at African-American, best ever. Hispanic, Asian, women, best ever! And it’s been a lot of fun for me, but I see the happiness and the faces.

Like last night in Florida with that, you know, really massive crowd, you see the happiness and the love — and nobody left. It’s like you. Nobody turns off your show. It’s like you can’t. Nobody leaves. You know, I’ll speak for an hour and 10 minutes, hour and 20 minutes. There wasn’t a person that left that room. It was just… It was an absolute love fest, and it’s going on all over the country, and a lot of it’s the same message. Most of it, I think — probably all of it — is the same message that you give out so well every day, better than anybody.

RUSH: Well, but your key… You know, I do understand it. I understand the bond that those people attending your rallies have with you and you with them. I’ve seen it. I know why it exists. And you are consistent. Things you said during the campaign are things you still say today. You haven’t given anybody reason to doubt you. You haven’t betrayed anybody or made them think that you’re going to. An example: Here you are suggesting that you’d be willing to maybe — you’d talk about — shutting down the government if that’s what it took to get this wall built.

THE PRESIDENT: Yeah.

RUSH: Now the traditional Republican says, “Oh, no! No! Don’t say that!” There you are saying, “Oh, yeah. I’ll be glad to do it if that’s what it takes.”

THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, I actually think it would be positive.

RUSH: People don’t understand your voters rally to you for that.

THE PRESIDENT: We had Obamacare repealed and replaced, and a man — I won’t mention his name. But a man at 2 o’clock in the morning went thumbs down, and he campaigned for years on repeal and replace. We had the chance. Nobody even spoke to him about it, because it was something that was unthinkable what he did, and because of that… But still, I have just about ended Obamacare. We have great health care. We have a lot of great things happening right now. New programs are coming out.

We got rid of the individual mandate. But that was very disappointing to me that night — and he did it because of me, probably. But that was very disappointing. That was a horrible thing he did to our country. And, frankly, it cost $1 trillion because we would have saved $1 trillion, on top of which we would have had good health care. But we’re doing it a different way. We have to go a different route. But he cost us a trillion dollars. And the other thing is the wall. We’ve started it. It’s like pulling teeth, though, getting these guys to get it done is. You have no idea how tough I’ve been.

I say, “Hey, if you have a shutdown, you have a shutdown.”

Now, the shutdown could also take place after the election. I happen to think it’s a great political thing, because people want border security. It’s not just the wall, Rush, as you know. It’s border security. It’s getting rid of catch-and-release, where you catch somebody, he can be a criminal of the highest order, and you have to release him! You catch him, you take his name, and you release him. And then you have the visa lottery. It’s a lottery system where you pick people out of a lottery. Well, the countries aren’t giving us their best people. They’re giving us people that they don’t want. So we’re taking people out of a lottery that the country doesn’t want. We’re getting some beauties.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: And then you have, you know, so many other things.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: We have to change the laws. We have the worst laws! How about chain migration? One person comes in and you end up with 32 people. The person that ran down 18 people on the West Side Highway, he’s allowed to have — and I think eight died. He has 22 members of his family in the United States because of chain migration. So we have to change this stuff, Rush. And we’ll get it done, but we have to change it, Rush. If we don’t change it, it will just go down, down, down. And it will get done. One way or the other, it’s getting done. But I’d be willing to do it. And you could do it before the election or after the election.

RUSH: Well, speaking of before, as a campaign issue, I saw a couple consultants say… I don’t need to mention their names. They’re Washington, D.C., professionals.

THE PRESIDENT: Right.

RUSH: They said that you need to drop this immigration stuff, Mr. President. You’re cruising for defeat if you base the midterms on this.

THE PRESIDENT: I know. I’ve heard that. (chuckles)

RUSH: You need to pivot back onto the economy, start telling people what a great economy we have, ’cause that’s the only way the Republicans can have a chance of holding the House in the midterms. What do you think about that advice?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I’ve heard them. Probably different people than you, but I’ve heard a lot of people saying, “Oh, don’t do it before the election, we’ll upset the applecart,” and because we are doing so well economically we should do well — and, you know, the polls are okay. It’s very interesting. My polls are great, but the question is, “Is it transferable?” Now, it certainly was in Florida because you saw Ron DeSantis, who’s gotten a tremendous — you know, many, many, many points. The governor of Georgia where he was down by five and he won by 40 after I endorsed him. (chuckling) That was pretty good. That was almost like your endorsement.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: But, you know, we’ve had tremendous —

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: If you take a look at Congressman Donovan from Staten Island where he was down by 10 and he wins by 24. So we’ve had a lot of impact. And that’s why I’m going around. But I have to say that I have heard this theory. I happen to think it’s a good thing politically. I’m not doing it for politics. I’m doing it because it’s the right thing to do. So I’m not looking at politics. But I happen to think that border security would be a good thing before the election, but there are many people within our party that are good people that are like you that agree with you on everything you say. But they’d rather do it after. They don’t agree on doing it before, and I accept their opinion, but I happen to think it would be a good thing to do before. I actually think we’d get more and there’d be more pressure on the other side, because we’re doing it because the Democrats are not giving us the votes.

RUSH: I think immigration is the largest reason you got elected, your consistency on that.

THE PRESIDENT: Well…

RUSH: I mean, it reverberates all across the country. There are people that the media, the inside-the-Beltway denizens are never gonna understand about this issue that you do. You’ve just articulated it, and you have articulated the thinking of what I think is a vast majority of people in this country. It’d be silly for you to abandon this issue now, going into the midterms.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, if you do it before, there’s a lot more pressure to get a great solution. But it’s riskier. If you do it afterwards, there’s less pressure; there’s less risk. I’m just not sure you’d make as good a deal. I will say a lot of people — good people — you know, would ask me in the nicest of ways, “Could we do it after the election?” So —

RUSH: I’ll bet. (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, and they’ve been good to me. I’ve had a lot of good support within the Republican Party, and you saw the poll numbers in the Republican Party. They like me so I have to keep them a little bit happy. But whether it’s before or after? But I actually think it’s a great campaign issue. I think it would be great before. But I don’t want to disappoint a lot of very good people that are working with me — and, Rush, I have to tell you, I’ve got some really good support within the Republican Party, too.

RUSH: Well, you do, and you have your staff. Are you basically…? Are you still following your gut, your instinct, or are you relying more and more on the circle of advisers you trust?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think it’s largely instinct. I have some great people. I really do. You know, you heard me tell the story last night maybe where, you know, I’ve been in Washington 17 times. In my whole life, I never stayed here. Now, all of a sudden, I’m riding down Pennsylvania Avenue and I’m president. So I don’t know a lot of people. Now I think I know everybody in Washington. I never stayed a night in Washington, I don’t believe. And, you know, I’ve probably been here 17, 18 times.

I’m from New York. But very rarely. And, all of a sudden, I’m president. And like Mike Pompeo. What a change that was. Mike is doing an incredible job. What a terrific guy — and I know you like him and he likes you. But we have some great people, and I’ve made some changes. But we’re really close to getting a fantastic — really just a fantastic group of people. We have some really great ones, and I think that’s reflective on the success that we’re having as an administration.

RUSH: Well, I thank you again for calling me today. This is the pinnacle, the greatest thing that could happen today. The last thing I expected was to hear from anybody ’cause I’ve given orders not to do anything unusual, and here you are. You’ve made the day for me. I can’t thank you enough, and God bless you.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you. You know, people don’t realize what a great achievement 30 years is in that cutthroat business that you happen to be in. You know, you might not find that ’cause you’re so good at what you do. But that is a cutthroat business, and for you to do this for 30 years is truly an amazing accomplishment, and there’s no voice like it. Even your friend Hannity agrees with that.

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: He said, “There’s nobody like this man.”

RUSH: (laughing)

THE PRESIDENT: So I said, “Oh, gee, I guess. I thought you two would be competitors.” He said, “Nope. He’s the dean.”

RUSH: No way!

THE PRESIDENT: He calls you “the dean.”

RUSH: No way. He was a guest host. He guest hosted for me when we first started. Absolutely.

THE PRESIDENT: No, he’s great. He’s a tremendous fan of yours. They all are. Everybody is. So I just want to congratulate you. Thirty years of… Just do it for another 30 years. After that, you can take it easy, okay?

RUSH: I will do that. Just that. I will stay around as long as you do.

THE PRESIDENT: Okay. You have a deal.

RUSH: Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: And thank you very much, Rush. So important what you do. Thank you.

RUSH: Thank you, sir, again, very much.

THE PRESIDENT: Take care of yourself. Good-bye.

RUSH: President Trump. We went a little long there, but that’s okay.

https://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2018/08/01/president-trump-calls-the-show/

Story 2: Trump Rally in Florida — Promises Made Promises Kept — Taxes and Regulations Cut — Videos

Trump hosts ‘MAGA’ rally with Rep. DeSantis in Tampa, FL

LIVE: President Donald Trump MASSIVE Rally in Tampa, Florida – July 31, 2018

Will ‘Trump Effect’ translate to midterm elections?

Ingraham: How the GOP can win the midterms

Why Democrats are optimistic about midterms

What Democrats’ left turn means for midterm elections

Trump whips Florida campaign rally into a frenzy with calls for a voter ID system ‘because you need ID to buy groceries’, then touts his economic success … but does not mention Mueller’s ‘witch hunt’ or Manafort’s trial

  • Donald Trump sent crowds into a frenzy Tuesday night at a rally in Tampa, Florida
  • Trump is reviving his call for a national voter ID system as the country heads into the midterm election and he eyes his own reelection campaign
  • The president said ‘the time has come for voter ID’, which sent crowds cheering
  • He touted his many victories, such as ending the war on Christmas: ‘Everybody is happy to say Merry Christmas’ 
  • The president spent considerable time talking about his trade policies, including tit-for-tat tariffs with China that he said would eventually pay dividends for the U.S. 
  • His supporters showed up to the rally wearing Make America Great Again hats and t-shirts
  • Trump won Florida in the 2016 presidential election, a victory that he reminded the crowd of 
  • His daughter Ivanka and son Eric and his wife Lara also attended the rally to support their father 

President Donald Trump is reviving his call for a national voter ID system as the country heads into the midterm election and the president eyes his own reelection campaign.

‘The time has come for voter ID,’ Trump said Tuesday night at a rally in Tampa, Fla., which earned him a roar of approval and sustained applause from the crowd.

‘If you go out and you want to buy groceries, you need a picture on a card, you need I.D. You go out and you want to buy anything, you need I.D. And you need your picture. In this country the only time you don’t need it in many cases is when you want to vote,’ he said.

Most grocery stores don’t require identification unless the customer is buying something age restricted, like alcohol. 

Election season was clearly on the president’s mind at his rally, which featured a friendly crowd clad in Make America Great Again hats and t-shirt. They waved signs that featured Trump’s new campaign slogan ‘Keep America Great,’ ‘Trump, Pence,’ ‘Women for Trump,’ and ‘Blacks for Trump.’

He failed to address Robert Mueller’s ‘witch hunt’ or Paul Manafort’s trial, which begun today, during his speech.

In his remarks, Trump endorsed Republican candidates in Florida’s crucial and competitive Senate and gubernatorial races this fall. The Sunshine State will also be critical to the president’s reelection efforts in 2020.

Scroll down for video 

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Tampa, Florida

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Tampa, Florida

 Trump was greeted by a supportive crowd at the Florida rally. In his remarks, Trump endorsed Republican candidates in Florida's crucial and competitive Senate and gubernatorial races this fall

 Trump was greeted by a supportive crowd at the Florida rally. In his remarks, Trump endorsed Republican candidates in Florida’s crucial and competitive Senate and gubernatorial races this fall

Supporters cheer as Trump arrives for the rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Tampa

Supporters cheer as Trump arrives for the rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Tampa

Trump won Florida in the 2016 presidential election, a victory that he was happy to remind the crowd of.

But he also talked about his own time in office, reassuring the crowd he would occupy the Oval for seven years. He reminisced about inauguration and mentioned his family – Eric Trump and Ivanka Trump were with him – as was Eric’s wife Lara – but he also talked about the first lady and how ‘everybody loves Melania.’

He also gave shout outs to two former campaign officials who were with him: ex campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and his former deputy campaign manager David Bossie.

He even got in a dig at ‘Crooked Hillary,’ prompting the crowd to shout ‘lock her up’.

And he touted other victories such as ending the war on Christmas – making that claim on a muggy day in July in Florida.

Trump acknowledged it was early in the year to be talking about the holidays. ‘it’s awfully early to be thinking this, but I always think it,’ he said.

‘Remember the attack on Merry Christmas? They are not attacking it anymore. Everybody is happy to say Merry Christmas,’ he said. ‘You have these big department stores that say happy holidays. They say where’s the Merry Christmas. Now they are all putting up Merry Christmas again.’

He also teased the crowd, which had filled the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, and been hyped up since before his arrival. Supporters swarmed CNN reporter Jim Acosta and the media area to scream ‘fake news’ before the president began his remarks and they were on their feet for all of Trump’s speech, often cheering and shouting.

‘I said we might be a little bit wild, they say he’s not acting presidential and I would say it’s a lot easier to act presidential than to do what I do. Anybody can act presidential,’ he said as the crowd cheered him on.

‘Ladies and gentlemen of the state of Florida, thank you very much for being here. You are tremendous people and I will leave now because I am boring you to death, thank you,’ he joked as the crowd gave him sustained applause.

Trump’s call for a national voter ID system came he railed on Democrats for their stance on illegal immigration, an issue the president has lasered in on in the last few weeks, claiming it was a policy stance that got him elected in the first place.

His first called for voter ID in January after he disbanded his controversial commission investigating allegations of voter fraud.

Trump created the commission after claiming that at least 3 million people voted illegally in the 2016 presidential election — enough to make up for Hillary Clinton’s lead in the popular vote.

Election season was clearly on the president's mind at his Monday rally, which featured a friendly crowd clad in Make America Great Again hats and t-shirt

Election season was clearly on the president’s mind at his Monday rally, which featured a friendly crowd clad in Make America Great Again hats and t-shirt

Supporters waved signs that featured Trump's new campaign slogan 'Keep America Great,' 'Trump, Pence,' 'Women for Trump,' and 'Blacks for Trump'

Supporters waved signs that featured Trump’s new campaign slogan ‘Keep America Great,’ ‘Trump, Pence,’ ‘Women for Trump,’ and ‘Blacks for Trump’

A supporter of President Donald Trump heckles CNN Jim Acosta, left, during a Trump rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa

A supporter of President Donald Trump heckles CNN Jim Acosta, left, during a Trump rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa

Supporters cheer as US President Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall in Tampa

A man holds a sign that reads: 'CNN sucks' during the rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall in Tampa

However, states wouldn’t hand over their voter data over privacy concerns and there have been no reports or proof of voter fraud on a massive scale.

Voting rights groups have been challenging voter ID laws for years, arguing they disproportionately impact voters of color.

Thirty six states request or require voters to show ID at the polls, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. In 2000, 14 states had such laws.

Trump claimed the system was needed to keep illegals from voting.

‘In some states, Democrats are trying to give illegal immigrants the right to vote,’ he charged.

‘The Democrats are not doing what we want them to do. They’re not voting our values and what we want to do in the country,’ he said.

‘If you want safety. If you want a country, vote Republican,’ he told the packed auditorium.

‘We need more votes,’ he said.

In his little more than an hour-long remarks at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall, the president offered a long defense of his record in the White House.

‘I ran for president with no experience and I won,’ he said.

‘I didn’t know anybody Washington but now I know everyone in Washington. I know the good ones. I know the bad ones,’ he added.

Support: Ivanka, brother Eric and his wife Lara were at the rally to support their father. Lara shared this photo of the trio to her Instagram 

Trump, accompanied by Ivanka Trump, third from right, and Eric Trump, right, the children of President Donald Trump, and Eric's wife, Lara Trump, second from right, steps off Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington after the Tampa rally

Ladies in red! (L-R) Ivanka Trump, Lara Trump and Eric Trump exit Marine One as they return from Tampa

Ivanka Trump arrives to the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, Tuesday after the Tampa rally

In a winding defense of his work, Trump proclaimed ‘we have the best economy in the history of our country now,’ attacked the press, praised U.S. steel, trashed the Democrats, and touted Republican gubernatorial and Senate candidates.

Trump is seen arriving back at the White House after the rally

His pro-America lines got the largest and loudest applause from the crowd while his attacks on the ‘fake news’ drew plenty of boos.

His speech was also peppered with red meat lines intended to rally his core supporters, such as when he said: ‘We will never give up, we will never give in, we will never, ever back down and we will never, ever surrender.’

He added: ‘Because we are Americans and our hearts bleed red, white and blue blue. We are one people. We are one family. And we are one glorious nation under god. And together we will make America wealthy again. We will make America strong again. We will make America safe again. We will make America great again.’

The president spent considerable time talking about his trade policies, including tit-for-tat tariffs with China that he said would eventually pay dividends for the United States.

The tariffs are causing unease among Republican lawmakers facing tough re-election battles in November, and Trump’s focus on them suggested he was concerned about their potential political impact.

China and other top U.S. trade partners zeroed in on American farmers with retaliatory tariffs after the administration imposed duties on Chinese goods as well as steel and aluminum from the European Union, Canada and Mexico.

‘China and others have targeted our farmers. Not good. Not nice. And you know what our farmers are saying? ‘It’s OK. We can take it,’ Trump said.

The Trump administration announced a $12 billion farm aid package last week, prompting some farmers and farm-state lawmakers, including Trump’s fellow Republicans, to criticize the move, saying they would rather trade with no tariffs than receive government help.

‘I want to thank our farmers,’ Trump said. ‘Our farmers are true patriots.’

Trump won Florida in the 2016 presidential election, a victory that he reminded the crowd of during the rally

Trump gives a thumbs up to the crowd during a campaign rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall

Trump gives a thumbs up to the crowd during a campaign rally at the Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall

Trump shakes hands with US Representative Ron DeSantis, Republican of Florida, and candidate for Florida Governor, during the rally

Trump shakes hands with US Representative Ron DeSantis, Republican of Florida, and candidate for Florida Governor, during the rally

Trump also defended the denuclearization deal he signed with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in June in Singapore after reports surfaced that North Korea was proceeding with its missile program.

The Singapore summit was long on positive imagery but short on specific benchmarks for North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons.

Trump said the fact that North Korea was starting to return the remains of American dead from the 1950s Korean War and that there had been no nuclear or missile tests were offshoots of the summit.’I think it’s going to work out very well,’ he said. ‘No tests, no rockets flying. But we’ll see what happens.’

Trump also repeatedly encouraged the crowd to vote for Republican Ron DeSantis for governor. Trump had previously endorsed the candidate via Twitter, a move that boosted DeSantis’ standing in the polls and pushed him past his GOP primary rival Adam Putnam, who has been twice elected statewide and has held various Florida offices for 21 years.

He brought DeSantis on stage to speak.

Trump also touted Republican Rick Scott, who’s challenging Democratic Senator Bill Nelson in the fall.

‘We have to make sure Rick Scott wins and wins big,’ he said.

Scott was not at the rally but was at the president’s workplace development event at the Tampa Bay Technical High School earlier in the evening and was spotted getting off Air Force One with the president when he landed in Florida.

Corey Lewandowski, former campaign manager for Trump, poses for photographs outside a signing ceremony for the 'Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act,' at Tampa Bay Technical High School, Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Tampa

Trump supporters watch through glass doors as the president speaks during the rally

At the beginning of his remarks, protesters were pulled from the crowd, which the president used to get in a dig at the media: ‘One person and tomorrow it will be massive protests.’

At least three protestors were pulled from the crowd.

The Florida State Fairgrounds Expo Hall was filled to the rafters with the arena standing room only.

The president pointed out: ‘Outside we set up for the first time a big movie screen because we have thousands and thousands who couldn’t get in.’

He added: ‘It’s a great place to be. If you have to be outside, be outside in the great state of Florida.’

It was actually raining outside when he made those remarks.

He also touted a poll – without naming which poll – that he says calls him the most popular Republican president.

‘The most popular person in the history of the Republican Party is Trump – can you believe it?’ he exclaimed, as the crowd roared and waved signs at him.

‘Seven more years. Yeah seven more,’ he concluded to the delight of the crowd.

Abraham Lincoln, a Republican president, is consistently ranked by historians as the best leader in the country’s history. And polling wasn’t invented until the 1930s, when Franklin D. Roosevelt was president.

Trump address that too.

‘I would say I can be more presidential than any president in history except for possibly Abe Lincoln with the big hat,’ he said.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6013269/Trump-whips-crowd-frenzy-campaign-rally-Florida.html

 

Story 3: Federal Reserve Keeps Federal Funds Target Rate Unchanged a 1.75-2.0 Percent — Videos

See the source image

See the source image

See the source image

Fed Decision Sets Stage for Rate Hike in September, Economist Swonk Says

Fed’s interest rates decision: What is the market looking for?

What to expect from the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision

How Interest Rates Are Set: The Fed’s New Tools Explained

The Federal Fund Rate in 4 Minutes

 

Fed holds interest rates, says economy is growing at a ‘strong’ pace

jerome powell
Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell.
 Chip Somodevilla/Getty
  • The Federal Reserve announced Wednesday that it decided during a two-day policy meeting to keep its key interest rate unchanged.
  • Traders had widely expected this decision, anticipating that the Fed would raise the benchmark for borrowing costs two more times this year including next month.
  • The Fed said the economy was growing at a “strong” pace and reaffirmed its plans to raise interest rates gradually.

The Federal Reserve held its benchmark interest rate unchanged Wednesday and reaffirmed its plans to continue raising borrowing costs at a gradual pace.

The decision to hold rates had been widely expected and came after a two-day meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, which dictates monetary policy.

“This statement is a placeholder ahead of the quarterly forecast meeting next month,” Ian Shepherdson, the chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said in a note.

Traders expect the Fed to raise borrowing costs twice more this year. They see a 92% probability that it will raise the fed funds rate to a range of 2% to 2.25% in September, according to Bloomberg.

“Economic activity has been rising at a strong rate,” the Fed’sstatement said, thanks to strong household spending and business investment. An advance estimate of second-quarter gross domestic product released Friday showed that the economy grew at an annualized rate of 4.1%, the fastest in nearly four years.

During his semiannual congressional testimony in mid-July, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said that, with appropriate monetary policy, the job market would remain strong and inflation would stay around the 2% target for “several years.”

He said that it was difficult to predict the outcome of the ongoing trade disputes but that a prolonged trade war would hurt the economy.

“We see no reason, then, to change our view that the Fed will hike in both Sep and Dec this year, but we don’t expect any serious change in the language of the statement until December or March,” Shepherdson said.

With seven rate hikes in the bag since the financial crisis, the Fed is contemplating whether to remove language in its statement that continues to describe borrowing costs as low. Minutes of its meeting in June showed that some FOMC officials debated how communications may evolve if the economy continued to make progress and was able to withstand higher rates.

Read more: Here’s how the Fed raises interest rates and why it matters

Wednesday’s 1 statement showed the Fed still planned to continue raising interest rates gradually.

Here’s the Fed’s statement:

“Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that the labor market has continued to strengthen and that economic activity has been rising at a strong rate. Job gains have been strong, on average, in recent months, and the unemployment rate has stayed low. Household spending and business fixed investment have grown strongly. On a 12-month basis, both overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy remain near 2 percent. Indicators of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed, on balance.

“Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability. The Committee expects that further gradual increases in the target range for the federal funds rate will be consistent with sustained expansion of economic activity, strong labor market conditions, and inflation near the Committee’s symmetric 2 percent objective over the medium term. Risks to the economic outlook appear roughly balanced.

“In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 1-3/4 to 2 percent. The stance of monetary policy remains accommodative, thereby supporting strong labor market conditions and a sustained return to 2 percent inflation.

“In determining the timing and size of future adjustments to the target range for the federal funds rate, the Committee will assess realized and expected economic conditions relative to its maximum employment objective and its symmetric 2 percent inflation objective. This assessment will take into account a wide range of information, including measures of labor market conditions, indicators of inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and readings on financial and international developments.

“Voting for the FOMC monetary policy action were: Jerome H. Powell, Chairman; John C. Williams, Vice Chairman; Thomas I. Barkin; Raphael W. Bostic; Lael Brainard; Esther L. George; Loretta J. Mester; and Randal K. Quarles.”

https://www.businessinsider.com/federal-reserve-fomc-statement-interest-rates-august-1-2018-8

Story 4: Trump Tweets To Attorney General Sessions on Closing Down Special Counsel Mueller Investigation or Rigged Witch Hunt! — Videos

Trump Calls On Sessions To End Russia Probe

Trump calls for AG Sessions to end the Russia investigation

Giuliani to Mueller: Put up or shut up

Napolitano: Is Giuliani putting Trump in jeopardy?

DiGenova: ‘Terror legal tactics’ used against Manafort

Tom Fitton on Strzok’s demands before joining Mueller team

Trump Walking Fine Line Asking Sessions to End Mueller Probe, Ex-Prosecutor Says

Napolitano on leaked audio tapes: Indication of a fraud

Mueller tries to squeeze Manafort as trial opens

Report: Robert Mueller may have a conflict of interest

Potential impact of Manafort trial on Russia probe

Why Mueller isn’t having success with Manafort

Trump calls on Sessions to stop Mueller’s Russia probe, raising specter of attempted obstruction

Chris MegerianNoah Biermanand Eliza Fawcett

President Trump called on Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions to “stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now,” opening the president to further complaints that he is trying to obstruct the investigation into Russia’s election interference and his campaign’s possible complicity.

Trump is already reportedly under investigation for potential obstruction of the Russia probe led by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. His tweet early Wednesday was the president’s most explicit statement to date seemingly aimed at getting his attorney general,the nation’s top law enforcement officer, to end the probe.

The tweet, along with several others on Wednesday morning, reflected the president’s accelerated attacks on the investigation, which he claims is tainted by bias. They coincided with the second day of the trial of Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, on 18 charges of tax evasion, bank fraud and conspiracy.

“This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further. Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!” Trump wrote.

Manafort’s trial continued in Alexandria, Va., with testimony from several more witnesses for the prosecution, including a political consultant who worked with him in Ukraine for the pro-Russia government at the time; an FBI agent who helped search his condo last year; and an employee from a high-end menswear store who said Manafort would pay for custom suits with wire transfers from overseas accounts.

Prosecutors have accused Manafort of using more than 30 such accounts in three foreign countries — Cyprus, the Seychelles, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines — to avoid paying U.S. taxes on $15 million of income.

The president suggested in a tweet that Manafort was being treated worse than Al Capone, the notorious Prohibition-era Chicago gangster who was also prosecuted for tax evasion. “Where is the Russian Collusion?” Trump added.

Trump’s tweets prompted Rep. Adam B. Schiff of Burbank, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, to accuse the president of obstruction “hiding in plain sight.”

“The President of the United States just called on his Attorney General to put an end to an investigation in which the President, his family and campaign may be implicated,” Schiff tweeted. “This is an attempt to obstruct justice hiding in plain sight. America must never accept it.”

The Justice Department says a president cannot face criminal charges while in office. But depending on what Mueller uncovers, including on obstruction, Congress could decide to pursue impeachment. President Clinton was impeached by the U.S. House for perjury and obstruction in 1998, a time when Congress likewise was under Republicans’ control, though the Senate voted for acquittal.

Follow the latest news of the Trump administration on Essential Washington »

Contrary to Trump’s tweet, Sessions doesn’t have power to stop the investigation because he recused himself from the Russia investigation more than a year ago. Deputy Atty. Gen. Rod J. Rosenstein became responsible for the probe, appointed Mueller and supervises his work.

“It’s a tweet that’s just blowing in the wind, because Sessions has already recused himself from the Russia investigation,” said John Yoo, a UC Berkeley law professor who served in President George W. Bush’s administration.

Even so, the episode once again forced the White House and Trump’s allies to defend a presidential tweet aimed at undermining the investigation.

Although the White House and the Justice Department previously have said that Trump’s tweets are official presidential statements, his lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani responded to the latest one as he has before, by brushing off suggestions that Trump’s tweets could be used as evidence of obstruction.

“The president was expressing his opinion on his favored medium for asserting his 1st Amendment right of free speech,” Giuliani said in an interview. “He said ‘should,’ not ‘must,’ and no presidential order was issued or will be.”

Giuliani said he spoke with Trump to make sure that the president wasn’t actually issuing an order. “I talked to him about it to make sure he was on the same page as we are,” Giuliani said, and the president indicated he was not ordering Sessions to act.

Giuliani told CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday that all of Trump’s tweets “don’t amount to anything.” He added, “Obstruction by tweet is not something I think works real well. Generally obstruction is secret, it’s clandestine, it’s corrupt.”

For months, Trump’s lawyers also have argued that it’s impossible for the president to obstruct justice because his constitutional authority extends over the Justice Department. That allows him to direct officials where to focus their resources or to fire them, as Trump did in removing James B. Comey as FBI director last year. That firing led to Mueller’s appointment as special counsel.

Wednesday’s tweet was a reminder of Trump’s unabated anger at Sessions for recusing himself from overseeing the Russia investigation. He did so on March 2, 2017, as members of both parties and legal experts contended that he should have.

At the time, Sessions pointed to Justice Department regulations to explain that, as one of Trump’s earliest and most active supporters, he shouldn’t participate in the investigation of the Trump campaign. He announced the decision after controversy over his own undisclosed contacts during the campaign and the post-election transition with the Russian ambassador at the time, Sergey Kislyak.

Two months ago, Trump tweeted that he should have chosen an attorney general who didn’t need to recuse himself. “I wish I did!” he wrote.

Joseph diGenova, a former U.S. attorney who was nearly hired to represent Trump, said the president has been “completely disgusted” with Sessions.

“He doesn’t like weak people,” DiGenova said in an interview with The Times. “And he thinks Jeff Sessions is extremely weak and not a competent leader.”

In his latest tweets, Trump also quoted criticism of the investigation from Alan Dershowitz, a Harvard Law School professor who frequently defends him on television. In an interview, Dershowitz also cast doubt on whether Trump’s tweets can be seen as an act of obstruction.

“You cannot obstruct justice by openly exercising your 1st Amendment rights and openly criticizing a prosecution, whether you’re right or wrong,” he said. “Obstruction of justice is generally committed behind the scenes, so I think both sides are a little overwrought here.”

Dershowitz also acknowledged that Trump was mistaken in suggesting that Sessions can end the investigation. “You can’t be both recused and making decisions about the investigation,” he said.

Stephen Vladeck, a University of Texas law professor, said Trump would need to take different steps to halt the probe. He could give the order to Rosenstein and fire him if he does not comply, Vladeck said, or Trump could try to replace Sessions with someone who does not have a conflict of interest, allowing that person to order Rosenstein to shutter Mueller’s investigation.

Manafort is the first person to face trial on charges stemming from the special counsel’s work. Prosecutors say he evaded taxes on income earned while working as a political consultant in Ukraine, and then relied on bank fraud to sustain his expensive lifestyle after the autocrat he worked for fled to Russia in 2014.

FBI Special Agent Matthew Mikuska described on Wednesday the early morning search of Manafort’s condo in July 2017. Mikuska said agents arrived at Manafort’s door at 6 a.m. and knocked three times. Hearing no answer, he said, they opened the door with a key, finding Manafort and his wife inside.

Agents seized numerous documents during the search, including a 2016 loan application from Manafort to the Banc of California, invoices for home renovation work, and wire transfers originating in Cyprus to Manafort’s companies.

Maximillian Katzman, 29, manager of a luxury menswear boutique in Manhattan, testified that Manafort was one of the store’s top five clients, and the only one who paid his bills through international wire transfers.

Katzman was the first of six witnesses who testified about Manafort’s luxury lifestyle funded through offshore accounts. Stephen Jacobsen said he was paid at least $3 million for home improvement projects on Manafort’s various homes, and Ronald Wall testified that Manafort was a “very good customer” at the House of Bijan clothing store.

The trial appeared to be running ahead of schedule. Prosecutors said they might be able to rest their case next week.

Bierman reported from Washington, and Megerian and Fawcett reported from Alexandria, Va.

noah.bierman@latimes.com | Twitter: @noahbierman


UPDATES:

4 p.m.: This article was updated with more testimony against Manafort.

2:45 p.m.: This article was updated with additional testimony from Manafort’s trial.

1:35 p.m.: This article was updated with additional context, developments from the Manafort trial and quotes from Yoo and diGenova.

This article was originally published at 10:20 a.m.

http://www.vagazette.com/la-na-pol-trump-mueller-20180801-story.html

 

Mueller’s Weaponized Justice System Should Scare All Americans

Image: Mueller's Weaponized Justice System Should Scare All Americans
Michael Cohen, former personal attorney for U.S. President Donald Trump, on July 27, 2018 in New York City. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

By Bernard Kerik
Tuesday, 31 July 2018 12:32 PMCurrent | Bio | Archive

He also attached an article, titled: “A Look at Manafort and Cohen, as Manafort Trial Starts.”

His focus and rightfully so, is on Manafort and Cohen’s distinctively different approaches on how they’re dealing with being selectively and politically targeted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and the U.S. Justice Department.

Manafort appears determined to fight it out and defend himself from charges that would have never been brought had he not supported and worked for a short period of time on the president’s political campaign. Apparently he has the money to do so… at least for the time being, as the prosecutors have an endless amount of money to spend in their quest for victory and are accountable to no one, as to how they spend it, or why.

Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn started out the same way, wrongfully assuming what most Americans once did, that if you haven’t done anything wrong, you have nothing to hide, and your cooperation is your best bet.

Unfortunately, he learned the hard way, that politically motivated prosecutors aren’t concerned with the truth, or give a damn about your service to our country, or how devastating their pursuit for a conviction can be — personally, financially, or professionally, annihilating you. For years, prosecutors have compelled guilty pleas of innocent people by pressuring their families, or extorting false witness testimony to obtain their convictions, it took this, the Manafort, Cohen and Flynn cases, for the public and press to pay any attention to it. In Flynn’s case, he pled guilty to making a false statement, but had he not, the government would have targeted his family, and bankrupted him, so he had no choice.

The Michael Cohen case is no different in the sense that he was politically targeted, but has revelations that are completely baffling.

I was outraged, as I’m sure was the president, that Cohen too, was targeted by the Special Counsel’s office, another victim, who would have never been in their crosshairs had he not worked for President Trump.

I was also stunned when the government raided his home, office, and hotel room, seizing his personal and professional records. This action was above and beyond the norm, but done for a purpose: to create a conflict between the president and his former counsel, and to insure that Cohen and president couldn’t communicate, and then to apply pressure on Cohen, like Flynn and Manafort, to flip on the president — in this case his own client.

Although I didn’t know Cohen personally, we had many mutual friends and just about every one of them described him as an extremely loyal and tough guy. In my eyes he turned out to be neither.

As someone that’s been through this nightmare and known many others that have, I can tell you that the personal pressures are enough to drive you into a manic depression, with thoughts of suicide. It kills or cripples you, or makes you stronger, and I personally feel bad for Cohen, because he is definitely not as tough as everyone thought.

What baffles me more, is his conduct before this all began, when he secretly taped private conversations between him and his client, Donald Trump. That raises serious questions about his motives, character, and credibility. There’s no logical answer as to why Cohen secretly taped his client, which creates the blatant perception that his motives were sleazy and ill intended.

Strangely, now he’s put himself in a position where the one and only person that could ever help him has realized his true character; and his chances of cooperating with the government have been diminished substantially due to his credibility, motives, and who knows what else. In the meantime, all the president’s critics have become his new best friends, milling about like hyenas in “The Lion King,” at least until they determine his usefulness. Then he’ll have no one.

All of this makes for great headlines and intrigue, but what bothers me more than anything, is that it doesn’t bother many members of Congress, or the ACLU, or the criminal justice reform advocates — like dozens, maybe hundreds of them.

Groups that rake in millions of tax dollars, calling for justice and pushing out messages on prosecutorial misconduct, over-criminalization, prosecutorial discretion, and selective targeting and prosecutions. There’s never been a greater public demonstration of all of this than these prosecutions, but because the intended target is Donald Trump, they’re eerily silent.

Last night Alan Dershowitz said that, “Special Counsel Robert Mueller is hoping that Paul Manafort will opt to testify against the president, rather than face a lengthy prison sentence.”

Doesn’t that bother the members of Congress sitting on the House and Senate Judiciary Committees? That our government weaponized its criminal justice system to specifically target the president and in the process, are destroying American citizens for selective and political reasons.

Perhaps because they’ve never been through it, or never known anyone that has. Perhaps they don’t give a damn as long as it suits their political needs and agenda?

Cohen, Flynn, and Manafort were targeted for political reasons, and that should scare the hell out of every American in our country, no matter what color you are, how you vote, or how wealthy you are, and something must be done to stop it.

It’s time for the U.S. Attorney General to stop this madness, and create internal policies to prevent it from happening in the future, and if for some reason, he cannot get the job done, that the president must find someone that can.

As New York City’s 40th Police Commissioner, Bernard Kerik was in command of the NYPD on September 11, 2001, and responsible for the city’s response, rescue, recovery, and the investigative efforts of the most substantial terror attack in world history. His 35-year career has been recognized in more than 100 awards for meritorious and heroic service, including a presidential commendation for heroism by President Ronald Reagan, two Distinguished Service Awards from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, The Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and an appointment as Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

Read Newsmax: Mueller’s Weaponized Justice System Should Scare All Americans | Newsmax.com

https://www.newsmax.com/bernardkerik/mueller-cohen-flynn-manafort/2018/07/31/id/874714/#ixzz5MvhHHEWS

Mueller’s Weaponized Justice System–a post by Bernard Kerik

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

By Bernard Kerik


Tuesday, 31 July 2018 12:32 PMCurrent | Bio | Archive

Read Newsmax: Mueller’s Weaponized Justice System Should Scare All Americans | Newsmax.com

Last night I came across a   tweet   by former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee in which he said, “I wish we had Lt. Columbo right now, to walk into the special counsel’s office and say, ‘You know, there’s something about this that bothers me…’”

He also attached an article, titled: “A Look at Manafort and Cohen, as Manafort Trial Starts.”

His focus and rightfully so, is on Manafort and Cohen’s distinctively different approaches on how they’re dealing with being selectively and politically targeted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and the U.S. Justice Department.

Manafort appears determined to fight it out and defend himself from charges that would have never been brought had he not supported and worked for a short period of time on the president’s political campaign. Apparently he has the money to do so… at least for the time being, as the prosecutors have an endless amount of money to spend in their quest for victory and are accountable to no one, as to how they spend it, or why.

Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn started out the same way, wrongfully assuming what most Americans once did, that if you haven’t done anything wrong, you have nothing to hide, and your cooperation is your best bet.

Unfortunately, he learned the hard way, that politically motivated prosecutors aren’t concerned with the truth, or give a damn about your service to our country, or how devastating their pursuit for a conviction can be — personally, financially, or professionally, annihilating you. For years, prosecutors have compelled guilty pleas of innocent people by pressuring their families, or extorting false witness testimony to obtain their convictions, it took this, the Manafort, Cohen and Flynn cases, for the public and press to pay any attention to it. In Flynn’s case, he pled guilty to making a false statement, but had he not, the government would have targeted his family, and bankrupted him, so he had no choice.

The Michael Cohen case is no different in the sense that he was politically targeted, but has revelations that are completely baffling.

I was outraged, as I’m sure was the president, that Cohen too, was targeted by the Special Counsel’s office, another victim, who would have never been in their crosshairs had he not worked for President Trump.

I was also stunned when the government raided his home, office, and hotel room, seizing his personal and professional records. This action was above and beyond the norm, but done for a purpose: to create a conflict between the president and his former counsel, and to insure that Cohen and president couldn’t communicate, and then to apply pressure on Cohen, like Flynn and Manafort, to flip on the president — in this case his own client.

Although I didn’t know Cohen personally, we had many mutual friends and just about every one of them described him as an extremely loyal and tough guy. In my eyes he turned out to be neither.

As someone that’s been through this nightmare and known many others that have, I can tell you that the personal pressures are enough to drive you into a manic depression, with thoughts of suicide. It kills or cripples you, or makes you stronger, and I personally feel bad for Cohen, because he is definitely not as tough as everyone thought.

What baffles me more, is his conduct before this all began, when he secretly taped private conversations between him and his client, Donald Trump. That raises serious questions about his motives, character, and credibility. There’s no logical answer as to why Cohen secretly taped his client, which creates the blatant perception that his motives were sleazy and ill intended.

Strangely, now he’s put himself in a position where the one and only person that could ever help him has realized his true character; and his chances of cooperating with the government have been diminished substantially due to his credibility, motives, and who knows what else. In the meantime, all the president’s critics have become his new best friends, milling about like hyenas in “The Lion King,” at least until they determine his usefulness. Then he’ll have no one.

All of this makes for great headlines and intrigue, but what bothers me more than anything, is that it doesn’t bother many members of Congress, or the ACLU, or the criminal justice reform advocates — like dozens, maybe hundreds of them.

Groups that rake in millions of tax dollars, calling for justice and pushing out messages on prosecutorial misconduct, over-criminalization, prosecutorial discretion, and selective targeting and prosecutions. There’s never been a greater public demonstration of all of this than these prosecutions, but because the intended target is Donald Trump, they’re eerily silent.

Last night Alan Dershowitz said that, “Special Counsel Robert Mueller is hoping that Paul Manafort will opt to testify against the president, rather than face a lengthy prison sentence.”

Doesn’t that bother the members of Congress sitting on the House and Senate Judiciary Committees? That our government weaponized its criminal justice system to specifically target the president and in the process, are destroying American citizens for selective and political reasons.

Perhaps because they’ve never been through it, or never known anyone that has. Perhaps they don’t give a damn as long as it suits their political needs and agenda?

Cohen, Flynn, and Manafort were targeted for political reasons, and that should scare the hell out of every American in our country, no matter what color you are, how you vote, or how wealthy you are, and something must be done to stop it.

It’s time for the U.S. Attorney General to stop this madness, and create internal policies to prevent it from happening in the future, and if for some reason, he cannot get the job done, that the president must find someone that can.

As New York City’s 40th Police Commissioner, Bernard Kerik was in command of the NYPD on September 11, 2001, and responsible for the city’s response, rescue, recovery, and the investigative efforts of the most substantial terror attack in world history. His 35-year career has been recognized in more than 100 awards for meritorious and heroic service, including a presidential commendation for heroism by President Ronald Reagan, two Distinguished Service Awards from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, The Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and an appointment as Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. To read more of his reports 

https://peterweisswritings.wordpress.com/2018/08/02/muellers-weaponized-justice-system-a-post-by-bernard-kerik/

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The Pronk Pops 1110, July 18, 2018, Story 1: Mass Hysteria of Big Lie Media — Pathetic Progressive Propaganda Peddling Meddling Mischief– Blaming Russians for Their Lying Lunatic Leftist Loses — “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.” — Videos — Story 2: More Obama Globalist Propaganda — Takes A Lying Politician To Know One — Obama Keeps On Lying — Obama The Appeaser Did Not Stop China and Russian Interventions in The United States — Unindicted Co-conspirator Obama Lead The Clinton Obama Democratic Criminal Conspiracy! — Videos

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Story 1: Mass Hysteria of Big Lie Media — Pathetic Progressive Propaganda Peddling Meddling Mischief– Blaming Russians for Their Lying Lunatic Leftist Loses — “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.” — Videos —

YouTube Debate: Would You Meet with Iran/Syria/North Korea?

Obama on meeting anti-US leaders

Tucker: The main reason Trump’s Russia critics hate him

Bruce: Americans know Trump loves the US

Analyzing the media coverage of the Trump-Putin summit

‘Special Report’ panel on fallout from Trump-Putin summit

Rand Paul sides with Trump over US intel

Sen. Rand Paul on John Brennan, the Mueller Investigation, and Diplomacy – July 18, 2018

Sen. Rand Paul Discusses Trump-Putin Meeting with Neil Cavuto – July 16, 2018

Mark Levin on media freakout over Trump-Putin summit

RUSH: What’s really behind this hysteria over Trump-Putin meeting? (July 17 2018)

Tomi Lahren slams selective outrage from the left on Russia

Ann Coulter Responds to the Trump-Putin Summit

Dr. Sebastian Gorka sounds off about the Helsinki hysteria

Dr. Gorka on the left’s reaction to the Trump-Putin summit

Hannity: Worst 24 hours in history of mainstream media

Trump Capitulates And Reads Incongruous Apologia, Still Distrusts Intel Fantasy of Russian Collusion

Ignore Leftie News Sockpuppets: Trump Was Magnificent With Putin in Helsinki, We’re Lucky He’s POTUS

Irin Burnett: How stupid does Trump think we are?

‘Sounds Like Collusion’: Hannity Rips Media for ‘Double Standard’

Ingraham: Trump Committed ‘Unforced Error,’ But Critics Should Look at His Actions Against Russia

Trump: Witch hunt drove a phony wedge between US, Russia

Anderson Cooper: Disgraceful performance by Trump during Putin meeting

John King on Trump: Never seen a president surrender to Russia

President Donald Trump Accused of Committing Treason | Good Morning Britain

Schumer: Possibility that Putin has damaging info on Trump

‘Nothing Short of Treasonous’: Former CIA Director Brennan Blasts Trump After Appearance With Putin

Aspects of Collective Behavior: Fads, Mass Hysteria, and Riots | Behavior | MCAT | Khan Academy

 

Mass Hysteria

by Mike Mish Shedlock

The mass hysteria following Trump’s meeting with Putin is likely to last for days. Most are outraged. Few see the light.

My article Congratulations to President Trump for an Excellent Summit with Putin spawned numerous some I could not tell if they were sarcastic or not.

For example, reader Brian stated ” There is zero doubt now that Putin stole the election from Hillary. So much so that she MUST be given the nomination again in 2020. All potential challengers must step aside. To refuse her the 2020 nomination would be evidence of traitorous activities with Putin.”‘

I congratulated Brian for brilliant sarcasm but he piled on. It now seems he was serious.

Mainstream media, the Left an the Right were in general condemnation.

Numerous cries of treason emerged from the Left and the Right (see the above link)

It Happened – No Trial Necessary

A friend I highly respect commented “There is simply no question that they did it. You can legitimately claim that it’s not important or that there has been no tie to Trump shown. On the Russians’ side, they can say, screw off, we were pursuing our interests. But you can’t take the view it did not happen. It happened.

There is a question who did it. Indictments are just that, not proof.

The US fabricated evidence to start the Vietnam war and the US fabricated WMD talk on the second war in Iraq. US intelligence had no idea the Berlin Wall was about to fall. The US meddled in Russia supporting a drunk named Yeltsin because we erroneously thought we could control him.

They Are All Liars

It’s a mystery why anyone would believe these proven liars. That does not mean I believe Putin either. They are all capable liars.

Let’s step back from the absurd points of view to reality.

US Meddling

The US tries to influence elections in other countries and has a history of assisting the forcible overthrow of governments we don’t like.

  • Vietnam
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Libya
  • Drone policy

All of the above are massive disasters of US meddling. They are all actions of war, non-declared, and illegal.

I cannot and do not condone such actions even if they were legal.

911 and ISIS resulted from US meddling. The migration crisis in the EU is a direct consequence of US meddling. The Iranian revolution was a direct consequence of US meddling.

Now we are pissing and moaning that Russia spent a few million dollars on Tweets to steal the election. Please be serious.

Let’s Assume

Let’s assume for one second the DNC hack was Russia-based.

Is there a reason to not be thankful for evidence that Hillary conspired to deny Bernie Sanders the nomination?

Pity Hillary?

We are supposed to pity Hillary?

The outrage from the Right is amazing.

It’s pretty obvious Senator John McCain wanted her to win. Neither faced a war or military intervention they disapproved of.

Common Sense

Let’s move on to a common sense position from Glenn Greenwald at the Intercept.

Greenwald vs. Joe Cirincione

​GLENN GREENWALD: In 2007, during the Democratic presidential debate, Barack Obama was asked whether he would meet with the leaders of North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Syria and Iran without preconditions. He said he would. Hillary Clinton said she wouldn’t, because it would be used as a propaganda tool for repressive dictators. And liberals celebrated Obama. It was one of his greatest moments and one of the things that I think helped him to win the Democratic nomination, based on the theory that it’s always better to meet with leaders, even if they’re repressive, than to isolate them or to ignore them. In 1987, when President Reagan decided that he wanted to meet with Soviet leaders, the far right took out ads against him that sounded very much just like what we just heard from Joe, accusing him of being a useful idiot to Soviet and Kremlin propaganda, of legitimizing Russian aggression and domestic repression at home.

GLENN GREENWALD: It is true that Putin is an authoritarian and is domestically repressive. That’s true of many of the closest allies of the United States, as well, who are even far more repressive, including ones that fund most of the think tanks in D.C., such as the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia. And I think the most important issue is the one that we just heard, which is that 90 percent of the world’s nuclear weapons are in the hands of two countries—the United States and Russia—and having them speak and get along is much better than having them isolate one another and increase the risk of not just intentional conflict, but misperception and miscommunication, as well.

JOE CIRINCIONE: Right. Let’s be clear. Glenn, there’s nothing wrong with meeting. I agree with you. Leaders should meet, and we should be negotiating with our foes, with those people we disagree with. We’re better off when we do that. And the kind of attacks you saw on Barack Obama were absolutely uncalled for, and you’re right to condemn those.

JOE CIRINCIONE: What I’m worried about is this president meeting with this leader of Russia and what they’re going to do. That’s what’s so wrong about this summit coming now, when you have Donald Trump, who just attacked the NATO alliance, who calls our European allies foes, who turns a blind eye to what his director of national intelligence called the warning lights that are blinking red. About what? About Russian interference in our elections. So you just had a leader of Russia, Putin, a skilled tactician, a skilled strategist, interfere in a U.S. election. To what? To help elect Donald Trump.

GLENN GREENWALD: I think this kind of rhetoric is so unbelievably unhinged, the idea that the phishing links sent to John Podesta and the Democratic National Committee are the greatest threat to American democracy in decades. People are now talking about it as though it’s on par with 9/11 or Pearl Harbor, that the lights are blinking red, in terms of the threat level. This is lunacy, this kind of talk. I spent years reading through the most top-secret documents of the NSA, and I can tell you that not only do they send phishing links to Russian agencies of every type continuously on a daily basis, but do far more aggressive interference in the cybersecurity of every single country than Russia is accused of having done during the 2016 election. To characterize this as some kind of grave existential threat to American democracy is exactly the kind of rhetoric that we heard throughout the Bush-Cheney administration about what al-Qaeda was like.

JOE CIRINCIONE: Why does Donald Trump feel that he has to meet alone with Putin? What is going on there? I mean, that—when Ronald Reagan met with Gorbachev at Reykjavik, at least he had George Shultz with him. The two of them, you know, were meeting with Gorbachev and his foreign minister at the time. This is—it’s deeply disturbing. It makes you feel that Trump is hiding something, that he is either trying to make a deal with Putin, reporting something to Putin. I tell you, I know U.S. intelligence officials—I’m probably going right into Glenn’s wheelhouse here. But U.S. intelligence officials are concerned about what Donald Trump might be revealing to the Russian leader, the way he revealed classified information to the Russian foreign minister when he met privately with him in the Oval Office at the beginning of his term. No, I don’t like it one bit.

GLENN GREENWALD: I continue to be incredibly frustrated by the claim that we hear over and over, and that we just heard from Joe, that Donald Trump does everything that Vladimir Putin wants, and that if he were a paid agent of the Russian government, there’d be—he would be doing nothing different. I just went through the entire list of actions that Donald Trump has taken and statements that he has made that are legitimately adverse to the interest of the Russian government, that Barack Obama specifically refused to do, despite bipartisan demands that he do them, exactly because he didn’t want to provoke more tensions between the United States and Russia. Sending lethal arms to Ukraine, bordering Russia, is a really serious adverse action against the interest of the Russian government. Bombing the Assad regime is, as well. Denouncing one of the most critical projects that the Russian government has, which is the pipeline to sell huge amounts of gas and oil to Germany, is, as well. So is expelling Russian diplomats and imposing serious sanctions on oligarchs that are close to the Putin regime. You can go down the list, over and over and over, in the 18 months that he’s been in office, and see all the things that Donald Trump has done that is adverse, in serious ways, to the interests of Vladimir Putin, including ones that President Obama refused to do. So, this film, this movie fairytale, that I know is really exciting—it’s like international intrigue and blackmail, like the Russians have something over Trump; it’s like a Manchurian candidate; it’s from like the 1970s thrillers that we all watched—is inane—you know, with all due respect to Joe. I mean, it’s—but it’s in the climate, because it’s so contrary to what it is that we’re seeing. Now, this idea of meeting alone with Vladimir Putin, the only way that you would find that concerning is if you believed all that.

JOE CIRINCIONE: So, Trump knew that this indictment was coming down, before he went to Europe, and still he never says a word about it. What he does is continue his attacks on our alliances, i.e. he continues his attacks on our free press, he continues his attacks on FBI agents who were just doing their job, and supports this 10-hour show hearing that the House of Representatives had. It’s really unbelievable that Trump is doing these things and never says one word about it. He still has not said a word about those indictments.

GLENN GREENWALD: That’s because the reality is—and I don’t know if Donald Trump knows this or doesn’t know this, has stumbled into the truth or what—but the reality is that what the Russians did in 2016 is absolutely not aberrational or unusual in any way. The United—I’m sorry to say this, but it’s absolutely true. The United States and Russia have been interfering in one another’s domestic politics for since at least the end of World War II, to say nothing of what they do in far more extreme ways to the internal politics of other countries. Noam Chomsky was on this very program several months ago, and he talked about how the entire world is laughing at this indignation from the United States—”How dare you interfere in our democracy!”—when the United States not only has continuously in the past done, but continues to do far more extreme interference in the internal politics of all kinds of countries, including Russia.

GLENN GREENWALDThe United States funds oppositional groups inside Russia. The United States sent advisers and all kinds of operatives to try and elect Boris Yeltsin in the mid-1990s, because they perceived, accurately, that he was a drunk who would serve the interests of the United States more than other candidates who might have won. The United States interferes in Russian politics, and they interfere in their cyber systems, and they invade their email systems, and they invade all kinds of communications all the time. And so, to treat this as though it’s some kind of aberrational event, I think, is really kind of naive.

GLENN GREENWALD: It wasn’t just Hillary Clinton in 2016 who lost this election. The entire Democratic Party has collapsed as a national political force over the last decade. They’ve lost control of the Senate and of the House and of multiple statehouses and governorships. They’re decimated as a national political force. And the reason is exactly what Joe said. They become the party of international globalization. They’re associated with Silicon Valley and Wall Street billionaires and corporate interests, and have almost no connection to the working class. And that is a much harder conversation to have about why the Democrats have lost elections than just blaming a foreign villain and saying it’s because Vladimir Putin ran some fake Facebook ads and did some phishing emails. And I think that until we put this in perspective, about what Russia did in 2016 and the reality that the U.S. does that sort of thing all the time to Russia and so many other countries, we’re going to just not have the conversation that we need to be having about what these international institutions, that are so sacred—NATO and free trade and international trade organizations—have done to people all over the world, and the reason they’re turning to demagogues and right-wing extremists because of what these institutions have done to them. That’s the conversation we need to be having, but we’re not having, because we’re evading it by blaming everything on Vladimir Putin. And that, to me, is even more dangerous for our long-term prospects than this belligerence that’s in the air about how we ought to look at Moscow.

Indictments and First Year Law

Mish: I now wish to return to a statement my friend made regarding the idea “No question Russia did it“.

From Glenn Greenwald

As far as the indictments from Mueller are concerned, it’s certainly the most specific accounting yet that we’ve gotten of what the U.S. government claims the Russian government did in 2016. But it’s extremely important to remember what every first-year law student will tell you, which is that an indictment is nothing more than the assertions of a prosecutor unaccompanied by evidence. The evidence won’t be presented until a trial or until Robert Mueller actually issues a report to Congress. And so, I would certainly hope that we are not at the point, which I think we seem to be at, where we are now back to believing that when the CIA makes statements and assertions and accusations, or when prosecutors make statements and assertions and accusations, unaccompanied by evidence that we can actually evaluate, that we’re simply going to believe those accusations on faith, especially when the accusations come from George W. Bush’s former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who repeatedly lied to Congress about Iraq and a whole variety of other issues. So, I think there we need some skepticism. But even if the Russians did everything that Robert Mueller claims in that indictment that they did, in the scheme of what the U.S. and the Russians do to one another and other countries, I think to say that this is somehow something that we should treat as a grave threat, that should mean that we don’t talk to them or that we treat them as an enemy, is really irrational and really quite dangerous.

Mish – Six Questions

  1. Is this a trial or a witch hunt?
  2. Do we need to see the evidence or do we believe known liars?
  3. Is Trump guilty of treason? Before we even see proof Putin was involved?
  4. Is the CIA incapable of fabricating evidence?
  5. Even if Russia interfered in the election, why should anyone have expected otherwise?
  6. Has everyone forgotten the US lies on WMDs already?

Irrational and Dangerous

I don’t know about you, but I have no reason to believe known liars and hypocrites.

I disagree with Trump all the time, in fact, more often than not.

The amount of venom on Trump over this is staggering.

Adding a missing word, I stand by my previous statement: “Nearly every political action that generates this much complete nonsense and hysteria from the Left and Right is worthy of immense praise.”

If you disagree please provide examples. The only two I can come up with are Pearl Harbor and 911. In both, the US was directly attacked.

For rebuttal purposes I offer Vietnam, Syria, Iraq, Russia, Iran, WWI, treatment of Japanese-American citizens in WWII, and McCarthyism.

Greenwald accurately assesses the situation as “really irrational and really quite dangerous.”

Indeed.

And if indictments and accusations were crimes, we wouldn’t need a jury.

 

How the left’s tactic of mass hysteria against Trump is playing out with the general public

By Rick Moran

Donald Trump has yet to be inaugurated, he has yet to make any specific proposals for legislation, has yet to issue any executive orders, and has yet to even comment on many of the cultural issues that divide America.

That lack of specificity has played directly into the hands of his opponents on the left.  Into the void, the left has substituted mass hysteria about what Trump might do rather than reasoned argument against the positions he took during the campaign.

The left in America doesn’t have that luxury – at least, not officially.  But there is little doubt that their attempts to massively exaggerate the danger of a Trump presidency to certain minority groups has found a mainstream media compliant, even eager in their efforts to conciously aid in spreading propaganda, hyperbole, even lies in the cause of opposing Trump.

How is the left’s campaign to convince large numbers of people that their freedoms, even their lives are in danger going?

Not bad at all.

Huffington Post asked 14 women who never participated in a demonstration before why they were going to take part in the Women’s March on Washington later this week.  Here are some of the answers:

I’m attending the march with my partner because I’m gay, scared and I want to be a part of history. The day after the election, three young white men came up to her and started yelling “Trump!” I went to a few of the protests in New York City and posted about it on Facebook, and I got horrible backlash, mostly from men I don’t know. I’ve also had extended family comment on some of my political posts. One went on a rant cursing all over my page. But I’m not going to make myself small to make others feel comfortable.

I actually have been to a march before, but not really by choice. When I was 15, I attended a Christian high school that was very pro-life and I did the March for Life. I was really afraid of hell and I had some sense that I was queer, so I was absolutely terrified. I went to the march because I felt like God would love me if I did. I remember holding up a big sign with all these photoshopped images of dead fetuses. It was traumatic.

What is this young, gay woman so scared of?  During the campaign, a gay Republican wrote on op-ed in the gay publication The Blade and put it simply:

The fact is that any honest look at Trump’s record and views on gay rights shows that most of the attacks by gay Democrats on his views are simply incorrect.

In fact, the attacks on Trump’s record on gay rights are dishonest.  Trump has been a social liberal most of his life, although he has trimmed some of those views to satisfy culturally conservative Republican voters.  He has been a passionate supporter of anti-discrimination laws against gays since 2000 and became the first GOP nominee to acknowledge the LGBT community in his acceptance speech.  He has come out strongly against violence directed at gays.  Again, what does this woman have to fear from a Trump presidency?

I’m going to take the bus in for the day. So far, I’m going alone, but I’m trying to convince my mother and some friends to come with me. Either way, I feel like I have to march because I’m frightened. I’m black. I’m Muslim. I don’t wear the hijab, but I think a lot about why my reaction would be if I saw someone else being harassed. I’m a protector and I worry about how defensive I would get.

I’m very excited not only for this first march, but to be part of a movement. I’m not just a woman. I’m black. I’m Muslim. I represent a lot of different groups and to me, this is about sending a message about civil rights on a broader scale.

There has been some highly publicized incidents of morons making idiots of themselves by harassing or even attacking Muslims – just as there have been morons making idiots of themselves attacking Trump supporters.  We don’t see mass hysteria among Trump supporters because the media really don’t care if they’re attacked or harassed.  But Trump’s election has clearly generated strong feelings against one’s political opponents, and the press have been willing partners in promoting the hate.

Sidney: I feel like it’s my obligation to support my wife and to be a man who stands up for women in these times. We’re taking alarming steps back in the fight for women’s rights and equality. I don’t want our side to falter. We need to stand up against belligerent cynicism and misguided machismo.

What legal “steps back” for women have there been under Trump?  None, of course, because he hasn’t even taken office yet.  But there has been a constant babble for the last several years that has implied that all men are rapists, or could be rapists, and any expression of masculinity threatens women.  This is an example of what could happen under a Trump presidency – that is, if Trump is as evil and misogynistic as the left says he is.

I am a 38-year-old mother of four and I will be flying to D.C. for the march with my sister, mother and niece. This election has brought out a fierceness in me that I didn’t know I had, mostly because of my children and my health. My kids are biracial (Korean and white) and are being raised in a small, mostly Republican farm community. My daughter has come home from school telling me that the kids there were afraid for her that Trump would “send her back to where she came from.” That really jarred me.

I’m also a breast cancer survivor. A lot of the women in my family are breast cancer survivors. We’ve always made it a point to get together and do breast cancer walks, but we have never done anything political. This feels big. I fear the day when [Republicans] do away with the Affordable Care Act, and my preexisting condition makes me ineligible for insurance.

Another example of someone getting hysterical over absolutely nothing.  It is very likely that the Obamacare requirement that insurance companies cover people with pre-existing conditions will remain in any replacement legislation.  Few Republicans have come out in favor of repealing that requirement.  But the left has ginned up fear and terror among sick people that they will all lose their insurance when Obamacare is repealed.

Mass hysteria is a kind of delusion that fits well with people who consider themselves “victims.”  This virulent form of Trump hate is easy to promote, given that so many Americans are comfortable with the “victim” label and can’t imagine life without it.  But the reality is, even if you’re a Trump-hater like me, a reasonable person would give the new president a chance to prove his detractors right or wrong.

Unfortunately, reason left the building in November.

Donald Trump has yet to be inaugurated, he has yet to make any specific proposals for legislation, has yet to issue any executive orders, and has yet to even comment on many of the cultural issues that divide America.

That lack of specificity has played directly into the hands of his opponents on the left.  Into the void, the left has substituted mass hysteria about what Trump might do rather than reasoned argument against the positions he took during the campaign.

As a political tactic, generating mass hysteria against an opponent has been wildly successful in history.  The two largest purveyors of mass hysteria – Nazi Germany and Communist Russia – used the ploy to convince large majorities of their populations of a clear and present danger in society, be it the Jews or “counterrevolutionaries.”  In this, they were ably aided by a captive media, where the state controlled all information disseminated to the public.

The left in America doesn’t have that luxury – at least, not officially.  But there is little doubt that their attempts to massively exaggerate the danger of a Trump presidency to certain minority groups has found a mainstream media compliant, even eager in their efforts to conciously aid in spreading propaganda, hyperbole, even lies in the cause of opposing Trump.

How is the left’s campaign to convince large numbers of people that their freedoms, even their lives are in danger going?

Not bad at all.

Huffington Post asked 14 women who never participated in a demonstration before why they were going to take part in the Women’s March on Washington later this week.  Here are some of the answers:

I’m attending the march with my partner because I’m gay, scared and I want to be a part of history. The day after the election, three young white men came up to her and started yelling “Trump!” I went to a few of the protests in New York City and posted about it on Facebook, and I got horrible backlash, mostly from men I don’t know. I’ve also had extended family comment on some of my political posts. One went on a rant cursing all over my page. But I’m not going to make myself small to make others feel comfortable.

I actually have been to a march before, but not really by choice. When I was 15, I attended a Christian high school that was very pro-life and I did the March for Life. I was really afraid of hell and I had some sense that I was queer, so I was absolutely terrified. I went to the march because I felt like God would love me if I did. I remember holding up a big sign with all these photoshopped images of dead fetuses. It was traumatic.

What is this young, gay woman so scared of?  During the campaign, a gay Republican wrote on op-ed in the gay publication The Blade and put it simply:

The fact is that any honest look at Trump’s record and views on gay rights shows that most of the attacks by gay Democrats on his views are simply incorrect.

In fact, the attacks on Trump’s record on gay rights are dishonest.  Trump has been a social liberal most of his life, although he has trimmed some of those views to satisfy culturally conservative Republican voters.  He has been a passionate supporter of anti-discrimination laws against gays since 2000 and became the first GOP nominee to acknowledge the LGBT community in his acceptance speech.  He has come out strongly against violence directed at gays.  Again, what does this woman have to fear from a Trump presidency?

I’m going to take the bus in for the day. So far, I’m going alone, but I’m trying to convince my mother and some friends to come with me. Either way, I feel like I have to march because I’m frightened. I’m black. I’m Muslim. I don’t wear the hijab, but I think a lot about why my reaction would be if I saw someone else being harassed. I’m a protector and I worry about how defensive I would get.

I’m very excited not only for this first march, but to be part of a movement. I’m not just a woman. I’m black. I’m Muslim. I represent a lot of different groups and to me, this is about sending a message about civil rights on a broader scale.

There has been some highly publicized incidents of morons making idiots of themselves by harassing or even attacking Muslims – just as there have been morons making idiots of themselves attacking Trump supporters.  We don’t see mass hysteria among Trump supporters because the media really don’t care if they’re attacked or harassed.  But Trump’s election has clearly generated strong feelings against one’s political opponents, and the press have been willing partners in promoting the hate.

Sidney: I feel like it’s my obligation to support my wife and to be a man who stands up for women in these times. We’re taking alarming steps back in the fight for women’s rights and equality. I don’t want our side to falter. We need to stand up against belligerent cynicism and misguided machismo.

What legal “steps back” for women have there been under Trump?  None, of course, because he hasn’t even taken office yet.  But there has been a constant babble for the last several years that has implied that all men are rapists, or could be rapists, and any expression of masculinity threatens women.  This is an example of what could happen under a Trump presidency – that is, if Trump is as evil and misogynistic as the left says he is.

I am a 38-year-old mother of four and I will be flying to D.C. for the march with my sister, mother and niece. This election has brought out a fierceness in me that I didn’t know I had, mostly because of my children and my health. My kids are biracial (Korean and white) and are being raised in a small, mostly Republican farm community. My daughter has come home from school telling me that the kids there were afraid for her that Trump would “send her back to where she came from.” That really jarred me.

I’m also a breast cancer survivor. A lot of the women in my family are breast cancer survivors. We’ve always made it a point to get together and do breast cancer walks, but we have never done anything political. This feels big. I fear the day when [Republicans] do away with the Affordable Care Act, and my preexisting condition makes me ineligible for insurance.

Another example of someone getting hysterical over absolutely nothing.  It is very likely that the Obamacare requirement that insurance companies cover people with pre-existing conditions will remain in any replacement legislation.  Few Republicans have come out in favor of repealing that requirement.  But the left has ginned up fear and terror among sick people that they will all lose their insurance when Obamacare is repealed.

Mass hysteria is a kind of delusion that fits well with people who consider themselves “victims.”  This virulent form of Trump hate is easy to promote, given that so many Americans are comfortable with the “victim” label and can’t imagine life without it.  But the reality is, even if you’re a Trump-hater like me, a reasonable person would give the new president a chance to prove his detractors right or wrong.

Unfortunately, reason left the building in November.

https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/01/how_the_tactic_of_mass_hysteria_against_trump_is_playing_out_with_the_general_public.html#ixzz5Le2TkIzK

 

Interfering In Democratic Elections: Russia Against The U.S., But U.S. Against The World

Doug Bandow

 2,806 views #ForeignAffairs

The Cold War finally and dramatically ended almost 30 years ago when the Berlin Wall fell, soon followed by the disintegration of the Soviet Union. But despite the election of Donald Trump, the U.S. and Russia have descended into what increasingly looks like a Little Cold War with Moscow’s decision to expel 755 U.S. diplomats.

The Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow.President Vladimir Putin on July 30, 2017 said the United States would have to cut 755 diplomatic staff in Russia. (ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images)

Indeed, paranoia seems more intense in Washington than Moscow. Democrats and Republicans alike have convinced themselves that Vladimir Putin and the Russian Federation, a shadow of the old U.S.S.R., threaten the combined colossus of America and Europe.

Both parties also are angry over Moscow’s apparent interference with the 2016 election. By an almost unanimous vote frenzied legislators voted to tighten sanctions and end the president’s discretion to relax the penalties. Yet Russia’s most rabid critics, such as Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain, also are among the most enthusiastic supporters of American intervention overseas, including meddling in other nations’ elections.

Russia behaved badly, but hacking emails which put a candidate in a poor light is much different than manipulating election results. The latter would be extremely serious, threatening a genuinely vital American interest, in free and fair elections. For that reason the controversy should act as Thomas Jefferson’s famous “fire bell in the night” and force states in particular to improve election security. Imagine the constitutional crisis if Moscow had changed the election outcome.

Of course, hacking the campaign still was illegal and improper. Nevertheless, it didn’t undermine the election process. After all, revealing hidden truths about one of the candidates actually increased voter knowledge. The method was wrong, but the result was positive. In fact, Ukraine engaged in a more limited and less intrusive effort on behalf of Hillary Clinton, mostly researching and disseminating embarrassing information about the Trump campaign.

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In any case, Russia’s presumed Clinton hack seems minor compared to attempts by foreign governments to influence U.S. policy. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates recently invested heavily to win Washington’s support against Qatar, creating the spectacle of countries which have financed terrorism accusing a neighbor of financing terrorism.

Israel’s political influence is legendary. There may be no more powerful lobby, domestic or foreign, with a greater stranglehold over policy. Simply attempting to debate the issue is politically dangerous for Israel’s critics. Turkey and Greece routinely battle each other. Other countries hire lobbyists, some permanently. That’s no surprise: the U.S. imposes itself on other nations, which understandably seek to turn that power to their advantage or forestall its use against them.

Most striking about the ongoing controversy is how U.S. policymakers appear oblivious to the fact that America has routinely interfered in other nations’ elections. Washington is understandably outraged that someone else would interfere with Americans’ sacred right to choose their own government. However, the same officials believe that they have a sacred right to interfere with the right of others to choose their own governments. Sadly, Russia’s efforts really were not “unprecedented,” as claimed by Susan Rice, Barack Obama’s National Security Adviser.

Russian President Vladimir Putin (C), Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu (R) and Commander in Chief of the Russian Navy Vladimir Korolev (L) watch a terrestrial globe while visiting Russia’s Navy Headquarters during Navy Day in Saint Petersburg on July 30, 2017. (ALEXEY NIKOLSKY/AFP/Getty Images)

Some of America’s foreign interventions have been dramatic and violent. Washington backed the 1973 ouster of Chilean President Salvador Allende. Thankfully years of brutal repression passed into history as the country returned to democracy. But the U.S. continues to pay the price of its support for the coup which overthrew Iran’s elected Prime Minister Mohammed Mossedegh in 1953. The victorious Shah ruled for a quarter century, but then was overthrown by an Islamic revolution, the consequences of which continue to roil the Middle East and U.S. policy.

More common has been more mundane electoral interference—closer to the Russian model. Indeed, Dov Levin of Carnegie Mellon University identified 81 instances between 1946 and 2000 in which Washington attempted to influence other nations’ elections. (In contrast, the Soviet Union did so less than half as often, 36 times.) Levin does not include in this number coups and other post-election “remedies,” such as in Chile and Iran.

During the Cold War America’s focus was containing communism. Explained Thomas Carothers of the Carnegie Endowment: “The U.S. didn’t want to see left-wing governments elected and so it did engage fairly often in trying to influence elections in other countries.”  However, attitudes in Washington haven’t changed much. In 2014 the U.S. backed a street putsch against the elected Ukrainian president and then American officials shamelessly plotted to get their favored candidate appointed prime minister.

The U.S. uses numerous tools to advance its interests. Explained Nina Agrawal of the Los Angeles Times: “These acts, carried out in secret two-thirds of the time, include funding the election campaigns of specific parties, disseminating misinformation or propaganda, training locals of only one side in various campaigning or get-out-the-vote techniques, helping one side design their campaign materials, making public pronouncements or threats in favor of or against a candidate, and providing or withdrawing foreign aid.”

It’s not clear how much impact Washington’s efforts had: Levin figured the vote increase for U.S.-backed candidates averaged three percent. The consequences often didn’t seem to satisfy Washington; in almost half of the cases America intervened at least a second time in the same country’s electoral affairs.

Ironically, given the outrage directed at Moscow today, in 1996 Washington did what it could to ensure the reelection of Boris Yeltsin over the communist opposition. The U.S. backed a $10.2 billion IMF loan, an ill-disguised bribe were used by the Yeltsin government for social spending before the election. Americans also went over to Russia to help. Time magazine placed Boris Yeltsin on the cover holding an American flag; the article was entitled “Yanks to the Rescue: The Secret Story of How American Advisers Helped Yeltsin Win.”

Former Russian President Boris Yeltsin at the French Open tennis tournament in Paris, France, Friday, June 2, 2006.  (Photographer: Caroline Blumberg/Bloomberg News.)

However, America’s election interventions started decades before. Levin pointed to the 1948 Italian poll, into which the U.S. “threw everything, including the kitchen sink.” The U.S. provided money for pork barrel projects, experts to run the campaign, and cash for campaign expenses, as well as threatened to cut aid if the Communists triumphed. CIA case officer F. Mark Wyatt remembered: “We had bags of money that we delivered to selected politicians, to defray their political expenses, their campaign expenses, for posters, for pamphlets.” Washington didn’t stop then: it intervened in seven subsequent Italian elections. Japan came in second with five separate interventions. Israel, Laos, and Sri Lanka shared third place at four times.

Not all meddling was tied to the Cold War. After the overthrow of Haitian dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier, the U.S. supported opponents, including military officers, against popular (and elected) demagogue Jean-Bertrande Aristide. Ironically, President Bill Clinton later threatened to invade if the military did not yield control back to Aristide.

In 1990 the U.S. mimicked Russia’s apparent efforts last year by leaking information on alleged corruption by Sandinista leader (and again now president) Daniel Ortega to German newspapers. The winning opposition candidate used the information to her advantage. Also in 1990 Washington provided aid, money and training to Vaclav Havel’s party in that nation’s first free election since the takeover by Nazi Germany decades before.

Two years ago Benjamin Netanyahu attempted to influence the debate over the Obama administration’s nuclear agreement with Iran. But the U.S. preceded his meddling by a couple of decades. In 1996 the Clinton Administration supported Shimon Peres against Netanyahu, hosting a peace conference and White House summit in advance of Israel’s vote. Three years later Clinton administration political strategists decamped to Israel to assist Ehud Barak against Netanyahu.

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, gestures as he speaks during a news conference in Budapest, Hungary, on Wednesday, July 19, 2017. (Photo: Akos Stiller/Bloomberg)

In 2000 Washington backed opposition presidential candidate Vojislav Kostunica against Slobodan Milosevic, America’s beta noire in the Balkans. The U.S. provided money and communications equipment to the opposition, which Levin figured was critical for Kostunica’s victory. The U.S. subsequently turned against Kostunica for being too independent, and used “pro-democracy” financial aid to help his opponents.

There’s no authoritative list of countries in which Washington intervened in elections, since the form of involvement varied widely. However, according to Levin and Michael Brenner of the University of Pittsburgh, countries suffering from America’s malign attention included: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Bolivia, Bosnia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Congo, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Dominican Republic,  Ecuador, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Macedonia, Malta, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Palestinian Authority, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, and Yugoslavia.

When Washington admits to its role, it claims to be nonpartisan. For instance, in Russia the U.S. would did nothing wrong, wrote Tom Malinowski, former Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, since Washington would merely “help fund some of the country’s leading nongovernmental organizations.” However, groups backed by the West typically lean toward the West and rarely look disinterested to the governments they criticize.

In fact, U.S.-backed organizations participated in the “color revolutions” and Arab Spring. Joseph Thomas of the Thai journal The New Atlas said of their activities: such groups “as well as myriad fronts around the world … fund, support and direct, are openly dedicated to manipulating foreign elections, creating U.S.-friendly opposition movements and even overthrowing governments that impede U.S. interests worldwide.”

Washington’s objective is clear, and it is not democracy in the abstract. American groups such as the National Democratic Institute and International Republican Institute choose who and how to help. Complained my colleague Ted Galen Carpenter: “The reality is that they fund and help train political factions that are deemed friendly to the United States, and specifically to Washington’s foreign policy.” In one Balkan nation a friend informedme that the ambassador forbade officials from even meeting with democratically elected parliamentarians deemed too nationalist and insufficiently pro-EU. America was never very interested in supporting “color revolutions” against its allies, irrespective of how tyrannical.

At least Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) acknowledged the appearance problem caused by promiscuous American election interference: “we live in a big glass house and there are a lot of rocks to throw.”

President George W. Bush makes remarks at the 20th Anniversary of the National Endowment for Democracy, emphasizing his push for democratic changes in the Middle East 06 November, 2003, in Washington, DC. (TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Of course, there is an obvious logic to U.S. behavior. American officials want to secure the U.S. from foreign interference while helping advance Washington’s international interests by supporting friendly politicians, movements, and parties in as many foreign states as possible. However, such dramatic inconsistency has become even more embarrassing with all the sanctimonious rhetoric regarding Russia’s conduct emanating from Washington.

The Trump administration should make the security of America’s elections a priority. Russia should know that any future attempt to interfere in U.S. elections would result in serious retaliation. However, Washington should begin with a pledge to stay out of other nations’ elections. Let people in a democracy make their own choices and select their own leaders. After all, if that policy is appropriate for America, it should be right for the world’s other democracies as well.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/dougbandow/2017/08/01/interfering-in-democratic-elections-russia-against-the-u-s-but-u-s-against-the-world/#28358d7e6644

 

Database Tracks History Of U.S. Meddling In Foreign Elections

NPR’s Ari Shapiro talks to Carnegie Mellon University researcher Dov Levin about his historical database that tracks U.S. involvement in meddling with foreign elections over the years.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

This is hardly the first time a country has tried to influence the outcome of another country’s election. The U.S. has done it, too, by one expert’s count, more than 80 times worldwide between 1946 and 2000. That expert is Dov Levin of Carnegie Mellon University. I asked him to tell me about one election where U.S. intervention likely made a difference in the outcome.

DOV LEVIN: One example of that was our intervention in Serbia, Yugoslavia in the 2000 election there. Slobodan Milosevic was running for re-election, and we didn’t want him to stay in power there due to his tendency, you know, to disrupts the Balkans and his human rights violations.

So we intervened in various ways for the opposition candidate, Vojislav Kostunica. And we gave funding to the opposition, and we gave them training and campaigning aide. And according to my estimate, that assistance was crucial in enabling the opposition to win.

SHAPIRO: How often are these interventions public versus covert?

LEVIN: Well, it’s – basically there’s about – one-third of them are public, and two-third of them are covert. In other words, they’re not known to the voters in the target before the election.

SHAPIRO: Your count does not include coups, attempts at regime change. It sounds like depending on the definitions, the tally could actually be much higher.

LEVIN: Well, you’re right. I don’t count and discount covert coup d’etats like the United States did in Iran in 1953 or in Guatemala in 1954. I only took when the United States is trying directly to influence an election for one of the sides. Other types of interventions – I don’t discuss. But if we would include those, then of course the number could be larger, yeah.

SHAPIRO: How often do other countries like Russia, for example, try to alter the outcome of elections as compared to the United States?

LEVIN: Well, for my dataset, the United States is the most common user of this technique. Russia or the Soviet Union since 1945 has used it half as much. My estimate has been 36 cases between 1946 to 2000. We know also that the Chinese have used this technique and the Venezuelans when the late Hugo Chavez was still in power in Venezuela and other countries.

SHAPIRO: The U.S. is arguably more vocal than any other country about trying to promote democracy and democratic values around the world. Does this strike you as conflicting with that message?

LEVIN: It depends upon if we are assisting pro-democratic side – could be like in the case of Slobodan Milosevic that I talked about earlier. I believe that that could be helpful for democracy. If it helps less-nicer candidates or parties, then naturally it can be less helpful.

SHAPIRO: Obviously your examination of 20th century attempts to influence elections does not involve hacking because computers were not widespread until recently.

LEVIN: Yeah.

SHAPIRO: In your view, is technology – the way that we saw in the November election – dramatically changing the game? Or is this just the latest evolution of an effort that has always used whatever tools are available?

LEVIN: I would say it’s more the latter. I mean the Russians or the Soviets before unfrequently did these type of intervention, just, you know, without the cyber-hacking tools – you know, the old style people meeting in the park in secret giving out and getting information and things like that, so to speak.

SHAPIRO: Dov Levin is with the Institute for Politics and Strategy at Carnegie Mellon University. Thanks for joining us.

LEVIN: Thank you very much.

https://www.npr.org/2016/12/22/506625913/database-tracks-history-of-u-s-meddling-in-foreign-elections

 

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President Obama delivers the Nelson Mandela Lecture in South Africa

REPLAY – Former US president Barack Obama honours Nelson Mandela on the centerary of his birth

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Obama made a rare public appearance to deliver a biting critique of Trump’s worldview — without saying his name

Obama

President Barack Obama delivered a speech in honor of Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday in South Africa on Tuesday.

 Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

  • Former President Barack Obama on Tuesday offered a sharp rebuke of his successor’s worldview.
  • Obama delivered the 2018 Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture in South Africa, slamming “strongman politics” and the rejection of intellectualism he feels is permeating today’s political culture.
  • Obama did not once say President Donald Trump’s name during the address, but his words represented a biting critique of the current president’s political philosophy.
  • Obama concluded his speech by encouraging young people to stay politically active and have faith in democracy despite how “slow” and “frustrating” it can be at times.

Former President Barack Obama on Tuesday offered a sharp rebuke of his successor’s worldview as he delivered the 2018 Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture in South Africa, slamming “strongman politics” and the rejection of intellectualism he feels is permeating today’s political culture.

Obama did not once say President Donald Trump’s name during the address, held one day before what would’ve been Mandela’s 100th birthday. But his target was clear as he offered a biting critique of the current president’s political philosophy.

The former president used the speech as an opportunity to outline what he views as troubling trends in the political arena.

—CBS News (@CBSNews) July 17, 2018 //platform.twitter.com/widgets.js ” data-e2e-name=”embed-container” data-media-container=”embed” style=”box-sizing: border-box; margin: 20px 0px;”>

CBS News

@CBSNews

Obama: “Strong man politics are ascendant suddenly. Whereby elections and some pretense of democracy are maintained the form of it. But those in power seek to undermine every institution or norm that gives democracy meaning.” https://cbsn.ws/2JvKIhe 

“Strongman politics are ascendant suddenly,” Obama said. “Whereby elections and some pretense of democracy are maintained, the form of it. But those in power seek to undermine every institution or norm that gives democracy meaning.”

‘The free press is under attack’

As Trump on Tuesday again used Twitter to denounce “Fake News,” a phrase he typically employs in response to negative coverage of his actions or rhetoric, Obama said that “the free press is under attack.”

Obama also urged people to reject xenophobia and “rabid nationalism,” warning that history shows countries that embrace “doctrines of tribal, racial, or religious superiority” eventually “find themselves consumed by civil war or external war.”

—CBS News (@CBSNews) July 17, 2018 //platform.twitter.com/widgets.js ” data-e2e-name=”embed-container” data-media-container=”embed” style=”box-sizing: border-box; margin: 20px 0px;”>

CBS News

@CBSNews

“The fact that countries which rely on rabid nationalism and xenophobia and doctrines of religious or racial superiority… Eventually those countries find themselves consumed by civil or external war,” Obama says during keynote speech https://cbsn.ws/2JvKIhe 

“You can be proud of your heritage without denigrating those of a different heritage,” Obama added.

Obama’s speech came after Trump’s high-profile visit to Europe, which Trump claimed was losing its “culture” because of immigration policies.

“These people who are so intent on putting people down and puffing themselves up, they’re small-hearted,” Obama said. “There’s something they’re just afraid of.”

‘You have to believe in facts’

In addition to warning against the dangers of excessive nationalism, the former president expressed concern over the apparent rejection of objective truth among leaders.

“You have to believe in facts. Without facts, there’s no basis for cooperation,” Obama said, adding: “Unfortunately, too much of politics today seems to reject the very concept of objective truth. People just make stuff up.”

An analysis from The Washington Post in May found that Trump had made at least 3,001 false or misleading claims so far as president.

Obama concluded his speech by encouraging young people to stay politically active and to have faith in democracy despite how “slow” and “frustrating” it can be at times.

“Keep believing. Keep marching. Keep building. Keep raising your voice. Every generation has the opportunity to remake the world,” Obama said. “Mandela said, ‘Young people are capable, when aroused, of bringing down the towers of oppression and raising the banners of freedom.’ Now is a good time to be aroused.”

http://www.businessinsider.com/obama-speech-in-south-africa-trump-transcript-2018-7?r=UK&IR=T

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 979, October 9, 2017, Story 1: Sounds of Silence — Harasser Harvey’s Hollywood Hypocrites — Pedophiles, Perverts, Pimps, Procurers, and Predator Progressives — Do As I Say Not What I Do!– Aiding, Abetting and Enabling Powerful People — Down and Dirty Democrats — Why Now and Who is Next? — Harvey Fired For Now — Videos — Story 2: Trump’s Choice — Transform Republican Party or Start A New Party — Time Will Tell — Videos — Story 3: Vice President Mike Pence Leaves Colts Football Game Because Some Players Kneeled During National Anthem — When Will NFL Enforce Its Own Rule? — Four Players Who Kneeled During National Anthem Were Suspended — Better Late Than Never — Videos

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Story 1: Sounds of Silence — Harasser Harvey’s Hollywood Hypocrites — Pedophiles, Perverts, Pimps, Procurers, and Predator Progressives — Do As I Say Not What I Do!– Aiding, Abetting and Enabling Powerful People — Down and Dirty Democrats — Why Now and Who is Next? — Harvey Fired For Now — Videos

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‘Harvey Weinstein’s Media Enablers’? The New York Times Is One of Them

The paper had a story on mogul’s sexual misconduct back in 2004 — but gutted it under pressure

A whole lot of fur has been flying since last Thursday, when The New York Times published a game-changing investigative story about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual misconduct that in lightning speed brought the mogul to his knees.

He apologized and took an immediate leave of absence from the company he co-founded, but that wasn’t enough. His board members and legal advisers have been resigning en masse. And as new, ugly details emerge of three decades of settlements for sex-related offenses, he’s quickly becoming a national pariah.

I applaud The New York Times and writers Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey for getting the story in print. I’m sure it was a long and difficult road.

But I simply gagged when I read Jim Rutenberg’s sanctimonious piece on Saturday about the “media enablers” who kept this story from the public for decades.

“Until now,” he puffed, “no journalistic outfit had been able, or perhaps willing, to nail the details and hit publish.”

That’s right, Jim. No one — including The New York Times.

In 2004, I was still a fairly new reporter at The New York Times when I got the green light to look into oft-repeated allegations of sexual misconduct by Weinstein. It was believed that many occurred in Europe during festivals and other business trips there.

I traveled to Rome and tracked down the man who held the plum position of running Miramax Italy. According to multiple accounts, he had no film experience and his real job was to take care of Weinstein’s women needs, among other things.

As head of Miramax Italy in 2003 and 2004, Fabrizio Lombardo was paid $400,000 for less than a year of employment. He was on the payroll of Miramax and thus the Walt Disney Company, which had bought the indie studio in 1993.

I had people on the record telling me Lombardo knew nothing about film, and others citing evenings he organized with Russian escorts.

At the time, he denied that he was on the payroll to help Weinstein with favors. From the story: “Reached in Italy, Mr. Lombardo declined to comment on the circumstances of his leaving Miramax or Ricucci, saying they were legal matters being handled by lawyers. ‘I am very proud of what we achieved at Miramax here in Italy,’ he said of his work for the film company. ‘It cannot be that they hired me because I’m a friend.’”

I also tracked down a woman in London who had been paid off after an unwanted sexual encounter with Weinstein. She was terrified to speak because of her non-disclosure agreement, but at least we had evidence of a pay-off.

The story I reported never ran.

After intense pressure from Weinstein, which included having Matt Damon and Russell Crowe call me directly to vouch for Lombardo and unknown discussions well above my head at the Times, the story was gutted.

I was told at the time that Weinstein had visited the newsroom in person to make his displeasure known. I knew he was a major advertiser in the Times, and that he was a powerful person overall.

But I had the facts, and this was the Times. Right?

Wrong. The story was stripped of any reference to sexual favors or coercion and buried on the inside of the Culture section, an obscure story about Miramax firing an Italian executive. Who cared?

The Times’ then-culture editor Jon Landman, now an editor-at-large for Bloomberg, thought the story was unimportant, asking me why it mattered.

“He’s not a publicly elected official,” he told me.  I explained, to no avail, that a public company would certainly have a problem with a procurer on the payroll for hundreds of thousands of dollars. At the time, Disney told me they had no idea Lombardo existed.

A spokeswoman for the Times had no comment on Sunday.

I was devastated after traveling to two countries and overcoming immense challenges to confirm at least part of the story that wound up running last week, more than a decade later. I had met in person with a woman who said she’d been paid off for an unwanted sexual encounter and thus proved she existed.

Update: Several have asked why I did not pursue the story once I started TheWrap. Fair question. Five years later, 2009, the moment had passed to go back and write the missing piece about Lombardo, who was no longer on the scene and whose story had been half-published in the Times. Miramax was no longer part of the Walt Disney Company. And I did not have sufficient evidence to write about a pay-off, even though I knew one existed. My focus was on raising money, building a website and starting a media company. In the subsequent years since then I did not hear about further pay-offs or harrassment and thought the issue was in the past. Weinstein had made a big effort, supposedly, to curb his temper and behavior, which was reflected in other areas of his public life.

Today I wonder: If this story had come to light at the time, would Weinstein have continued his behavior for another decade, evidenced by the scathing 2015 memo by former staffer Lauren O’Connor unearthed by Kantor and Twohey.

Writes Rutenberg: “Mr. Weinstein had his own enablers. He built his empire on a pile of positive press clippings that, before the internet era, could have reached the moon.”

The New York Times was one of those enablers. So pardon me for having a deeply ambivalent response about the current heroism of the Times.

Editors note: A previous version of this story stated that Jon Landman was a deputy managing editor at the Times. He left that position in 2013 to become an editor at large at Bloomberg View. TheWrap regrets the error.

https://www.thewrap.com/media-enablers-harvey-weinstein-new-york-times/

Is Harvey Weinstein’s career over? Experts don’t think so

By Jade Scipioni  Media & Advertising FOXBusinessOpens a New Window.

Harvey Weinstein scandal revealing Hollywood hypocrisy?

Maslansky + Partners President Lee Carter and Forbes Media Chairman Steve Forbes on the Weinstein Company’s decision to fire Harvey Weinstein over allegations of sexual harassment.

Even though famed Hollywood studio executive Harvey Weinstein has been officially ousted from his own film studio that he co-founded, The Weinstein Company, amid a barrage of sexual harassment claims, many brand experts say the film producer still has a shot at a comeback.

“While it does not look good for him, others in equally as bad places did bounce back,” Karen Post, author of the book “Brand Turnaround”, told FOX Business.

Weinstein was fired on Sunday by his board of directors, following three days of turmoil after The New York Times published an investigative piece detailing his sexual misconduct involving actresses and underlings for multiple decades.

Post says Weinstein’s first step in hopes of having a comeback should be owning his actions and putting his money where his mouth is.

According to Forbes, Weinstein’s company’s most recent net worth totaled around $150 million dollars in 2015. However, The Weinstein Company is reportedly in talks to change its name in light of board members’ fears that the company’s reputation has been severely tainted by Weinstein’s behavior.

A source with knowledge of the company told entertainment news website The Wrap that “TWC will need a new name” and that change should be expected soon.

Rob Frankel, branding strategist and expert at Frankel & Anderson in Los Angeles, told Fox Business that while things keep getting worse for Weinstein, there is “no way is he done.”

“Sidelined for a time, but not done. He’s too connected to be done. Anyone with a hot screenplay will still do business with him because he can make the deal happen. All the media lemmings thought Don Imus, Martha Stewart, Kobe Bryant, Dan Rather and Brian Williams were done. They were all wrong. In fact, even money says that O.J. Simpson will be back with a reality show of his own within a year,” Frankel said.

 

While a name change for the company will likely happen, Frankel added that unlike most industries, it won’t have any major impact.

“In Hollywood, production companies come and go all the time. That’s the transient nature of a very fluid business,” he said.

However, branding expert Kait LeDonne said it’s simply too early to say whether or not Weinstein will be able to make a comeback.

“Fortunately, we are at a turning point, where more and more brave women are coming forth to share their stories, shining a light on this unacceptable behavior,” LeDonne told FOX Business. “If he truly wants to come back, he will have to lead the way on what it looks like for someone with these patterns of behavior to transform themselves. As for The Weinstein Company, from a branding standpoint, I’d advise they change their name. It will be hard for individuals to separate the name from negative associations due to his behavior.”

http://www.foxbusiness.com/features/2017/10/09/is-harvey-weinsteins-career-over-experts-dont-think-so.html

 

Harvey Weinstein Is Finished. Which Accused Hollywood Predator Will Be Next?

The controversial movie mogul was fired Sunday after a series of sexual-misconduct allegations came to light. But plenty of other so-called Hollywood scumbags remain.

On Sunday evening, The Weinstein Company’s board of directors reached the conclusion that “in light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days… his employment with The Weinstein Company is terminated, effective immediately.”

The damage, however, was already done. Weinstein, a terribly bullying, terribly pinguid, terribly influential movie mogul—first with Miramax, then Weinstein Co.—had allegedly committed heinous acts of sexual coercion and harassment for decades, with a bombshell New York Times investigation revealing that the 65-year-old exec paid off at least eight of his accusers, many of whom shared similar horror stories: a “business meeting” at a hotel suite soon gave way to propositions that were increasingly sexual in nature. One TV reporter claimed that Weinstein cornered her in the bowels of his restaurant before jacking off into a potted plant. His accusers say they felt trapped, pressured to give in to this round mound of renown’s base demands. He was, after all, a Hollywood kingmaker; the man behind modern cinema classics like Pulp FictionThe Lord of the Rings, and Good Will Hunting; a behind-the-scenes wizard who’d been thanked at the Academy Awards more often than God. How could they deny him?

Weinstein’s comeuppance had a ring of poetic justice to it—after all, the Times piece dropped around the one-year anniversary of Donald Trump’s infamous “grab them by the pussy” Access Hollywood tape, in which the president-to-be was caught on a hot mic bragging that his stardom allowed him to sexually assault women at will (both Weinstein and Trump are from the outer borough of Queens). It was also curious how, the very same week, Politico chose to run (and incessantly tweet out) a glowing profile of celebrity-turned-politician Arnold Schwarzenegger, a man who stands accused of predatory behavior similar to Weinstein and Trump.

Right now, many people—both in the Tinseltown bubble and beyond—are asking why? Why now, after decades of payouts and whispers, did one of cinema’s most powerful players finally get his? It’s a difficult question to fully answer, though one possible reason is an increased sense of media accountability surrounding the issue of sexual misconduct in Hollywood, born out of the Bill Cosby case and having more women’s voices heard in newsrooms.

When the full scope of the Cosby catastrophe came into focus, that one of America’s most “beloved,” “wholesome” comedians stood accused of sexually assaulting more than 60 women over a 40-year period, everyone in the access-reliant entertainment media should have received a much-needed wake-up call. They were, in a sense, complicit, churning out profile after pasteurized profile that helped fuel the Cosby mythos. Even right as the horrifying Cosby testimonies were coming to light, former Newsweek editor Mark Whitaker was peddling a 544-page biography of the funnyman scrubbed of any rape allegations.

ANGELA WEISS/GETTY

Taylor Swift, Este Haim, Jaime King, Harvey Weinstein and Lorde attend The Weinstein Company’s 2015 Golden Globes After Party on January 11, 2015 in Beverly Hills, California.

Weinstein was even more well-connected in the New York media landscape than Cosby, with numerous friends in very high places. He’d infamously launched Talk magazine with Tina Brown (also the founding editor of The Daily Beast), and seemingly, between the ad dollars he spent and the access he could no doubt provide (or withhold), had the cachet to get stories killed.

The Times’ recent Weinstein story, meanwhile, came about thanks to two intrepid female reporters, Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey, operating at an organization whose news masthead is comprised of 50 percent women, and one “name” actress in Ashley Judd, who was mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.

It’s not just the media that enabled Weinstein, either. Since the sexual-misconduct allegations came to light, those who have benefited from professional relationships with the embattled film mogul, from directors and actors he launched to stardom to agents and producers who got their cut, have remained deafeningly silent. The Daily Beast has reached out to dozens of industry folks, and the consensus is it’s the talk of the town behind closed doors, but no one is willing to go on the record—perhaps fearing that it could hurt them down the line, should Weinstein return from the dead. Even late-night TV hosts, who relish assuming the role of moral arbiter, have—with the notable exception of Last Week Tonight’s John Oliver—thus far refused to violate the apparent omertà.

Worth noting, too, is that Weinstein’s star has diminished considerably in recent years. His company is coming off a string of duds, including the much-ridiculed Tulip Fever, and the last Weinstein-shepherded Academy Award came over two years ago in a minor category (Best Adapted Screenplay for The Imitation Game). As with Cosby, retribution for Weinstein did not come until he was past his sell-by date.

CARLOS ALVAREZ/GETTY

Arnold Schwarzenegger attends the ‘Wonder Of The Sea 3D’ premiere on September 25, 2017 in San Sebastian, Spain.

Which brings us back to Schwarzenegger, and that profile of him that ran over the weekend in Politico. In the piece, the writer, Edward-Isaac Dovere, confesses to having accompanied Schwarzenegger on flights aboard his private jet and red-wine-filled feasts in Spain, and in return, gifted his idol with a puffy piece wherein he floated the actor for a number of Cabinet positions and refused to press him on his pitiable track record as governor or myriad sex scandals—including, as it were, numerous Weinstein-esque allegations of sexual misconduct.

A 2001 piece in Premiere magazine is largely credited with lifting the lid off the Schwarzenegger allegations. In the story, titled “Arnold the Barbarian,” writer John Connolly uncovered numerous shocking stories concerning the actor, from a female talk-show host who claimed that he “tweaked her nipple and then laughed at her objections” to a producer who recalled how, on the set of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Schwarzenegger allegedly pulled out a female crew member’s breasts against her will. “I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. This woman’s nipples were exposed, and here’s Arnold and a few of his clones laughing. I went after the woman, who had run to the shelter of a nearby trailer. She was hysterical but refused to press charges for fear of losing her job. It was disgusting,” the producer told Premiere. Two years later, just as the A-list actor emerged as the Republican frontrunner in the race for governor of California, the Los Angeles Times ran a series of stories in which as many as 11 women accused Schwarzenegger of grabbing or groping them, including an assistant director on the 1988 film Twins and a CNN intern.

“Did he rape me? No,” one unnamed woman, who alleged the actor grabbed her breast in 1980, told the Los Angeles Times. “Did he humiliate me? You bet he did.”

Schwarzenegger initially denied the allegations through his spokesman, before sort of fessing up. “It is true that I was on rowdy movie sets and I have done things that were not right, which I thought then was playful,” he said at the time. “But now I recognize that I offended people. Those people that I have offended, I want to say to them I am deeply sorry about that and I apologize because that’s not what I’m trying to do.”

This selective outrage also extends to Woody Allen, whose latest feature Wonder Wheel is closing the New York Film Festival this week. The film’s marquee stars, Kate Winslet and Justin Timberlake, are two of many who continue to feature in Allen productions—despite the fact that the legendary filmmaker’s own adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, has long accused him of child sexual abuse. Or how about Louis C.K., whose Allen-inspired film I Love You, Daddy opens on Nov. 17, and who’s been dogged by sexual-misconduct rumors for years?

When it comes to Hollywood, these men, it seems, have not yet outlasted their use.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/harvey-weinstein-is-finished-which-accused-hollywood-predator-will-be-next

Meryl Streep at the Golden Globes in January. In her statement, she said Mr. Weinstein had been “respectful” during their working relationship. CreditPaul Drinkwater/NBC, via Associated Press

Meryl Streep led an increasingly vocal Hollywood chorus condemning the reported sexual misconduct of the Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein on Monday, issuing a carefully worded statement released to HuffPost. She decried the behavior as “disgraceful” and “inexcusable,” yet also pleaded ignorance about it, writing, “Not everybody knew.”

Ms. Streep’s statement seemed to have opened the floodgates, with Glenn Close and Judi Dench, among others, soon voicing their own dismay and disgust about Mr. Weinstein.

In recent days, after The New York Times released a scathing investigationon Thursday chronicling accusations that Mr. Weinstein had sexually harassed employees and actresses, many people called for reactions from Hollywood’s A-list players, and especially Ms. Streep, a longtime champion of women’s causes who worked with Mr. Weinstein on films like “August: Osage County” and “The Iron Lady,” for which she won an Academy Award.

Mr. Weinstein was fired Sunday night from his production company, the Weinstein Company, which issued a statement saying the decision was made “in light of new information about misconduct by Harvey Weinstein that has emerged in the past few days.” In its report, The Times found that Mr. Weinstein had reached at least eight settlements with women who had claimed sexual harassment.

In her statement, Ms. Streep also said Mr. Weinstein had been “respectful” during their working relationship, and challenged the widely repeated narrative that his misbehavior had been a longtime open secret in Hollywood.

Here is Ms. Streep’s full statement:

The disgraceful news about Harvey Weinstein has appalled those of us whose work he championed, and those whose good and worthy causes he supported. The intrepid women who raised their voices to expose this abuse are our heroes.

One thing can be clarified. Not everybody knew. Harvey supported the work fiercely, was exasperating but respectful with me in our working relationship, and with many others with whom he worked professionally. I didn’t know about these other offenses: I did not know about his financial settlements with actresses and colleagues; I did not know about his having meetings in his hotel room, his bathroom, or other inappropriate, coercive acts. And if everybody knew, I don’t believe that all the investigative reporters in the entertainment and the hard news media would have neglected for decades to write about it.

The behavior is inexcusable, but the abuse of power familiar. Each brave voice that is raised, heard and credited by our watchdog media will ultimately change the game.

Glenn Close: ‘I’m Angry’

In a statement to The Times, Ms. Close said that she felt “angry and darkly sad,” and that while Mr. Weinstein had been decent with her, she had heard rumors of inappropriate behavior toward women over many years.

Her full statement:

I’m sitting here, deeply upset, acknowledging to myself that, yes, for many years, I have been aware of the vague rumors that Harvey Weinstein had a pattern of behaving inappropriately around women. Harvey has always been decent to me, but now that the rumors are being substantiated, I feel angry and darkly sad.

I’m angry, not just at him and the conspiracy of silence around his actions, but also that the “casting couch” phenomenon, so to speak, is still a reality in our business and in the world: the horrible pressure, the awful expectation put on a woman when a powerful, egotistical, entitled bully expects sexual favors in exchange for a job.

Ours is an industry in which very few actors are indispensable and women are cast in far fewer roles than men, so the stakes are higher for women and make them more vulnerable to the manipulations of a predator. I applaud the monumental courage of the women who have spoken up. I hope that their stories and the reportage that gave them their voices represents a tipping point, that more stories will be told and that change will follow.

The changes must be both institutional and personal. Men and women, in positions of power, must create a work environment in which people, whose jobs depend on them, feel safe to report threatening and inappropriate behavior, like that reported in the Times. No one should be coerced into trading personal dignity for professional success. I feel the time is long and tragically overdue for all of us in the industry, women and men, to unite — calmly and dispassionately — and create a new culture of respect, equality and empowerment, where bullies and their enablers are no longer allowed to prosper.

Judi Dench: ‘Horrifying’

Ms. Dench, who has credited Mr. Weinstein with launching her film career, also took aim, saying in a statement to Newsweek that while she had been “completely unaware” of any misconduct, she found it “horrifying,” and gave her “wholehearted support to those who have spoken out.”

Ms. Dench’s films with Mr. Weinstein include “Shakespeare in Love” and “Mrs. Brown,” and she has said she has a tattoo that reads “JD loves HW” on her rear end.

Kevin Smith, Judd Apatow and Mark Ruffalo

Several prominent men in show business took to Twitter to express disgust at Mr. Weinstein’s behavior. “He financed the first 14 years of my career — and now I know while I was profiting, others were in terrible pain,” wrote the director Kevin Smith. “It makes me feel ashamed.”

http: www.nytimes.com/2017/10/09/movies/dench-close-streep-weinstein.html

Harvey Weinstein

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Harvey Weinstein
CBE
Harvey Weinstein 2010 Time 100 Shankbone.jpg

Weinstein in 2010
Born March 19, 1952 (age 65)
FlushingNew York, U.S.
Nationality American
Alma mater University at Buffalo (BA)
Occupation Film producer
co-founder of Miramax Films and The Weinstein Company
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Eve Chilton (1987–2004; 3 children)
Georgina Chapman (2007–present; 2 children)
Children 5

Harvey WeinsteinCBE (honorary) (born March 19, 1952) is an American film producer and film studioexecutive. He is best known as co-founder of Miramax, which produced several popular independent films including Pulp FictionClerksThe Crying Game, and Sex, Lies, and Videotape.[1] He and his brother Bob have been co-chairmen of The Weinstein Company, their film production company, since 2005. He won an Academy Award for producing Shakespeare in Love, and garnered seven Tony Awards for producing a variety of winning plays and musicals, including The ProducersBilly Elliot the Musical, and August: Osage County.[2]

Weinstein has been accused by multiple women of committing sexual harassment over several decades.[3] Following a series of allegations made against him in October 2017, Weinstein was terminated from The Weinstein Company by its board of directors on October 8, 2017.

Education and early career

Weinstein was born in FlushingNew York.[4] He was raised in a Jewish family,[5] the son of Max Weinstein, a diamond cutter (d. 1976[6]), and Miriam (née Postel; d. 2016 at 90[6]).[7] He grew up with his younger brother, Bob Weinstein, in a housing co-op named Electchester in New York City. He graduated from John Bowne High School and the University at Buffalo.[8][9] Weinstein received an honorarySUNYDoctorate of Humane Letters in a ceremony at Buffalo in 2000.[10] Weinstein, his brother Bob, and Corky Burger independently produced rock concerts as Harvey & Corky Productions in Buffalo through most of the 1970s.

Film career

1970s: Early work and creation of Miramax

Both Weinstein brothers had grown up with a passion for movies and they nurtured a desire to enter the film industry. In the late 1970s, using profits from their concert promotion business, the brothers created a small independent film distribution company named Miramax, named after their parents, Miriam and Max. The company’s first releases were primarily music-oriented concert films such as Paul McCartney‘s Rockshow.

1980s: Success with arthouse and independent films

In the early 1980s, Miramax acquired the rights to two British films of benefit shows filmed for the human rights organization Amnesty International. Working closely with Martin Lewis, the producer of the original films, the Weinstein brothers edited the two films into one movie tailored for the American market. The resulting film was released as The Secret Policeman’s Other Ball in May 1982 and it became Miramax’s first hit. The movie raised considerable sums for Amnesty International and was credited by Amnesty with having helped to raise its profile in the United States.[8][11]

Weinstein at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival

The Weinsteins slowly built upon this success throughout the 1980s with arthouse films that achieved critical attention and modest commercial success. Harvey Weinstein and Miramax gained wider attention in 1988 with the release of Errol Morris‘s documentary The Thin Blue Line, which detailed the struggle of Randall Adams, a wrongfully convicted inmate sentenced to death row. The publicity that soon surrounded the case resulted in the release of Adams and nationwide publicity for Miramax. In 1989, their successful launch release of Steven Soderbergh‘s Sex, Lies, and Videotape propelled Miramax to become the most successful independent studio in America.[12]

Also in 1989, Miramax released two art-house films, The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover and director Pedro Almodóvar‘s film Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!, both of which the MPAArating board gave an X-rating, effectively stopping nationwide release for these films. Weinstein sued the MPAA over the rating system. His lawsuit was later thrown out, but got the MPAA to agree to introduce the new NC-17 rating.

1990s–2000s: Further success, Disney ownership deal

Miramax continued to grow its library of films and directors until, in 1993, after the success of The Crying GameDisney offered the Weinsteins $80 million for ownership of Miramax.[13] Agreeing to the deal that would cement their Hollywood clout and ensure that they would remain at the head of their company, Miramax followed the next year with their first blockbuster, Quentin Tarantino‘s Pulp Fiction and distributed the popular independent film Clerks. Miramax won its first Academy Award for Best Picture in 1997 with the victory of The English Patient (Pulp Fiction was nominated in 1995 but lost to Forrest Gump). This started a string of critical successes that included Good Will Hunting (1997) Shakespeare in Love (1998), both of which won several awards, including numerous Academy Awards.

2005–2017: The Weinstein Company

On March 29, 2005, it was announced that the Weinstein brothers would leave Miramax on September 30 to form their own production company, named The Weinstein Company, with several other media executives, directors Quentin Tarantinoand Robert Rodriguez, and Colin Vaines, who had successfully run the production department at Miramax for ten years and moved with the brothers to head development in The Weinstein Company.[14] The board of The Weinstein Company fired him on October 8, 2017 following allegations of Weinstein’s sexual misconduct.[15]

Praise and criticism

In 2004, Weinstein was appointed an honorary Commander of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his contributions to the British film industry (the award being “honorary” because he is a citizen of the United States).[16]

While lauded for opening up the independent film market and making it financially viable, Weinstein has been criticized by some for the techniques he has allegedly applied in his business dealings. Peter Biskind‘s book, Down and Dirty Pictures: Miramax, Sundance and the Rise of Independent Film,[8] details criticism of Miramax’s release history and editing of Asian films, such as Shaolin SoccerHero and Princess Mononoke. There is a rumour that when Harvey Weinstein was charged with handling the U.S. release of Princess Mononoke, Miyazaki sent him a samurai sword in the post. Attached to the blade was a stark message: “No cuts”. Miyazaki commented on the incident: “Actually, my producer did that. Although I did go to New York to meet this man, this Harvey Weinstein, and I was bombarded with this aggressive attack, all these demands for cuts. I defeated him.”[17] Weinstein has always insisted that such editing was done in the interest of creating the most financially viable film. “I’m not cutting for fun”, Harvey Weinstein said in an interview. “I’m cutting for the shit to work. All my life I served one master: the film. I love movies.”[11][18]

Another example cited by Biskind was Phillip Noyce‘s The Quiet American, whose release Weinstein delayed following the September 11 attacks, due to audience reaction in test screenings to the film’s critical tone towards America’s past foreign policy. After being told the film would go straight-to-video, Noyce planned to screen the film in Toronto International Film Festival in order to mobilize critics to pressure Miramax to release it theatrically. Weinstein decided to screen the film at the Festival only after he was lobbied by star Michael Caine, who threatened to boycott publicity for another film he had made for Miramax. The film received mostly positive reviews at the Festival, and Miramax eventually released the film theatrically, but it was alleged that Miramax did not make a major effort to promote the film for Academy Award consideration, though Caine was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor.[8]

Weinstein’s aggressive efforts to campaign for Oscars for his films during Oscar season led to a ban on such campaigns by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.[19]

Weinstein has also cultivated a reputation for ruthlessness and fits of anger. According to Biskind, Weinstein once put a New York Observer reporter in a headlock while throwing him out of a party. On another occasion, Weinstein excoriated director Julie Taymor and her husband during a disagreement over a test screening of her movie Frida.[11]

In a 2004 newspaper article, in New York magazine, Weinstein appeared somewhat repentant for his often aggressive discussions with directors and producers.[20] However, a Newsweek story on October 13, 2008, criticized Weinstein, who was accused of “hassling Sydney Pollack on his deathbed” about the release of the film The Reader. After Weinstein offered $1 million to charity if the accusation could be proven, journalist Nikki Finke published an email sent by Scott Rudin on August 22 asserting that Weinstein “harassed” Anthony Minghella‘s widow and a bedridden Pollack until Pollack’s family asked him to stop.[21][22]

In September 2009, Weinstein publicly voiced opposition to efforts to extradite Roman Polanski from Switzerland to the U.S. regarding a 1977 charge that he had drugged and raped a 13-year-old, to which Polanski had pleaded guilty before fleeing the country.[23]Weinstein, whose company had distributed a film about the Polanski case, questioned whether Polanski committed any crime,[24] prompting Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley to insist that Polanski’s guilty plea indicated that his action was a crime, and that several other serious charges were pending.[25]

In November 2011, independent filmmaker Michael Bartlett blamed Weinstein for the poor quality of his film, World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries, citing pressure from Weinstein to deliver the film ahead of schedule. When Weinstein said, “This is the date you will deliver the film and if it isn’t finished then we’ll finish it for you”, the post production was rushed and the editing and sound mix were not completed properly.[26]

In March 2012, Weinstein was made a Chevalier (knight) of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Consulate in New York City in recognition of Miramax’s efforts to increase the presence and popularity of foreign films in the United States.[27]

In April 2012, Time magazine included Weinstein in its annual list of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.[28]

In 2013, New York Post film critic Kyle Smith accused Harvey Weinstein of making numerous anti-Catholic films, including Priest (1994), The Butcher Boy (1997), The Magdalene Sisters (2002), and Philomena (2013).[29]

Activism and Rejection of Support

Weinstein is also active on issues such as poverty, AIDSjuvenile diabetes, and multiple sclerosis research. He serves on the Board of the Robin Hood Foundation, a New York City-based non-profit that targets poverty, and co-chaired one of its annual benefits.[30] He is critical of the lack of gun control laws and universal health care in the United States.[31]

Weinstein has been a supporter and generous contributor to the Democratic Party including the campaigns of President Barack Obama and presidential candidates Hillary Clinton, and John Kerry.[32] He supported Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign,[33] and in 2012, he hosted an election fundraiser for President Obama at his home in Westport, Connecticut.[34] In 2013, he expressed support of President Obama amid criticism for the launch of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Weinstein has expressed favorable opinions about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

After it became public knowledge in October, 2017 that Weinstein was a serial harasser of women[3] many politicians he had supported rejected his support. Senator Al Franken (MN), who had received $20,000 from Weinstein donated his contributions to the Minnesota Indian Women’s Resources Center.[35] Senator Patrick Leahy (VT) and Senator Martin Heinrich (NM), donated campaign contributions received from Weinstein to funds supporting women.[36]

Legal problems

In February 2009, former Sam & Dave singer Samuel David Moore filed suit against Harvey and Bob Weinstein for allegedly basing Soul Men, a Weinstein Co. comedy starring Bernie Mac and Samuel L. Jackson, on Sam & Dave’s career.[37]

In February 2011, filmmaker Michael Moore took legal action against the Weinstein brothers, claiming he was owed millions in profits for his 2004 documentary Fahrenheit 9/11.[38] In February 2012, Moore dropped the lawsuit for an undisclosed settlement.[39]

Sexual harassment allegations

On October 5, 2017, an exposé was published in The New York Times accusing Weinstein of sexually harassing a number of women, including actress Ashley Judd.[40] In a statement to The New York Times, he said, “I appreciate the way I’ve behaved with colleagues in the past has caused a lot of pain, and I sincerely apologize for it.” An adviser described him as “an old dinosaur learning new ways.” He said he was due to take a sabbatical and was working with therapists to “deal with this issue head on.”[3] However, his consulting lawyer, Lisa Bloom, stated that “he denies many of the accusations as patently false.”[3]

In an email to The Hollywood Reporter, Weinstein’s attorney Charles Harder said they would be suing The New York Times and any proceeds derived from the suit would be donated to women’s organizations. Harder’s email read as follows:

The New York Times published today a story that is saturated with false and defamatory statements about Harvey Weinstein…It relies on mostly hearsay accounts and a faulty report, apparently stolen from an employee personnel file, which has been debunked by nine different eyewitnesses. We sent the Times the facts and evidence, but they ignored it and rushed to publish. We are preparing the lawsuit now. All proceeds will be donated to women’s organizations.[41]

Depictions in media

Harvey Weingard, a character portrayed by Maury Chaykin on the HBO TV series Entourage, is based on Weinstein. Although the character is portrayed as an intimidating and aggressive producer, Weinstein has reportedly responded positively to the character.[42] The foul-mouthed character Malcolm Tucker in the BBC series The Thick of It is based on Hollywood agents and producers, notably Harvey Weinstein and the team at Miramax that has been “long celebrated for Malcolm-like behavior,” according to actor Peter Capaldi.[43][44]

Personal life

Weinstein has been married twice:

  • In 1987, he married his assistant Eve Chilton. They divorced in 2004.[20][45] They had three children: Remy (previously Lily) (born 1995), Emma (born 1998), and Ruth (born 2002).[46]
  • In 2007, he married English fashion designer and actress Georgina Chapman.[47] They have a daughter, India Pearl (born 2010)[48] and a son, Dashiell[49] (born 2013).[50]

On August 20, 2012, Vivek Shah was arrested for the attempted extortion of Weinstein, Chris Cline, and three other unnamed individuals. Shah demanded millions of dollars be wired to an offshore bank account or he would murder the family members of each recipient of his extortion letters.[51] A seven-count felony indictment against Shah was filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles in September 2012.[52] Shah was convicted in September 2013 and sentenced to seven years in prison.

Selected filmography

Television.svgThis film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.

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President Trump walked to board Marine One at the White House on Saturday.
President Trump walked to board Marine One at the White House on Saturday. PHOTO: SHAWN THEW/POOL/ZUMA PRESS

Increasingly, Donald Trump is a president without a party.

With virtually no Republican votes to spare in the Senate, where his agenda hangs in the balance, he has nonetheless become estranged from two key figures in his own party. First it was John McCain of Arizona, over his defiance of the president on health care. Next it was Bob Corker of Tennessee, who feuded with the president in a remarkable weekend of exchanged insults.

As it happens, Mr. McCain is chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee; Mr. Corker is chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Thus, the president is alienated from the two most important Senate figures on national security at a time when two critical national-security issues are coming to a boil: the fate of the nuclear deal with Iran and the increasingly dangerous standoff with North Korea.

Meanwhile, Mr. Trump backed the losing candidate in a Republican primary runoff in Alabama, finding himself trapped between the party establishment whose choice he supported and the social conservative foot soldiers who backed Roy Moore, the candidate who actually won.

Now, Mr. Trump’s once and perhaps current political guru, Steve Bannon, has set out to attack much of the rest of the Republican caucus in the Senate. He’s also gunning for the entire GOP congressional leadership, with which the president is himself increasingly disillusioned.

How Independent Can Trump Become?

President Trump defied the Republican party this week by striking a deal with Democrats in Congress on raising the debt ceiling, keeping the government running and funding hurricane relief. The WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains whether this signals Trump will be more independent in the coming weeks. Photo: AP

After a conversation with Mr. Bannon in recent days, Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect summarized his agenda this way: “Bannon’s current obsession is to blow up Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican Senate incumbents whom he regards as hostile to his brand of nationalism.”

Mr. Trump has tried to adjust to this growing estrangement from leaders of his own party by opening the door to cooperation with Democrats on immigration and health care. But after seemingly striking a deal with Democrats to protect the legal status of so-called Dreamers—young immigrants brought here illegally as youths—he plotted strategy over how to follow through on that agreement with a group of Republican senators over a White House dinner last week.

What emerged was a list of demands that may well blow up any pending immigration deal. To get the Dreamers deal Democrats want, Mr. Trump called for, among other things, funding for a wall he wants along the Mexican border, new restrictions on those seeking asylum in the U.S. and punishment for localities that declare themselves “sanctuary cities.”

Those principles surely are negotiable. Still, they seem to leave Mr. Trump trapped in a kind of immigration no-man’s-land, between Democrats wanting a Dreamers fix and Republicans hoping to use that fix as a lever to push through broad immigration changes they’d like to make.

The question is: Where is this all supposed to lead?

There is an answer to that—in the long run. Mr. Trump would like to lead, and Mr. Bannon would like to create, a Republican Party different from the one that exists. It would be a party molded in the Trump image: nationalist, skeptical of immigration and trade agreements, dubious about the virtues of diplomacy and international negotiations, with economic strategies skewed to help workers in traditional American industries.

After all, Mr. Trump has said on several occasions—most notably at a conservative conference in February—that he wants the GOP to be the party “of the American worker.”

There are three problems with that vision, though. First, that party doesn’t exist today. The current version of the GOP was built largely by merging the interests of the business community with the agenda of social conservatives. Neither of those groups would win top billing in the vision for a new, Trump-inspired party.

The second problem is that it isn’t at all clear that such a new Republican Party would, in fact, be a majority party. There are disaffected people loitering in both current major parties—disgruntled blue-collar workers, fearful middle-class Americans, trade skeptics, those who feel culturally alienated from the current Democratic establishment—who are drawn to such a vision.

But ultimately, Mr. Trump failed to win the popular vote even as he won the presidency in 2016, and he has never come close to winning majority approval for the job he’s doing as president.

The third problem is that, while waiting for that Republican Party to emerge, Mr. Trump confronts the job of governing today. The current party has just 52 members in the Senate, and, as noted, Mr. Trump doesn’t have the loyal support of all of them. Mr. Bannon and his allies are threatening to challenge other Republican incumbents in primary elections next year, which won’t exactly keep those targeted at his side.

Meantime, Mr. Trump hasn’t forged reliable tactical alliances with enough Democrats to make up the difference. Which leaves him a leader in search of reliable followers.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trump-the-president-without-a-party-1507563185

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The Pronk Pops Show 971, September 25, 2017, Story 1: American Sport Fans Vs. National Football League and Players — Not Respecting The American People, National Anthem, American Flag and United States By Kneeling During National Anthem Should Not Be Tolerated by Team Owners or League –NFL Not Enforcing Their Own Rule About National Anthem — Public Relations Disaster Destroying Brand and Team Franchises — — Political Correctness Collectivist Conformity Is Not Unity or Equality — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 971, September 25, 2017

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Pronk Pops Show 965, September 15, 2017

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Pronk Pops Show 903, June 1, 2017

Image result for president trump critical of football players taking the knee Image result for branco cartoons on nfl kneelingImage result for veteran without legs in wheel chair stands in playing of national anthem at NFL gameImage result for cartoons NFL taking the knee

Story 1: American Sport Fans Vs. National Football League and Players — Not Respecting The American People, National Anthem, American Flag and United States By Kneeling During National Anthem Should Not Be Tolerated by Team Owners or League –NFL Not Enforcing Their Own Rule About National Anthem — Public Relations Disaster Destroying Brand and Team Franchises — Political Correctness Collectivist Conformity Is Not Unity — Videos

Image result for branco cartoons on nfl football players vs. trumpImage result for branco cartoons on nfl football players vs. trump

Image result for branco cartoons on nfl football players vs. trump

“…The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem.

During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses. …”

~National Football League game operations manual,  pages A62-63

Fans Boo When 

Cowboys kneels owner Jerry Jones kneels with team before national anthem

Jerry Jones & ENTIRE Dallas Cowboys Team Kneel before Anthem, Hannity Reacts

Morning after analysis: Cowboys found a middle ground

Sean Hannity 9/25/17 – Hannity Fox News Today September 25, 2017 TRUMP-NFL PROTEST, STEVE BANNON

BREAKING NEWS America Football fans are Going To Boycott all NFL Sponsors like Anheuser Busch ,Gato

“Spoilt brats” Tucker Carlson Reacts to NFL Players kneeling during anthem

Special Report with Bret Baier 9/25/17 – Special Report Fox News September 25, 2017 NFL VS TRUMP

“DON’T Pull That Cr@p on Me!” Tucker Gets MAD at NFL Player for Disrespecting the Anthem and Flag

Patriots Fans Boo Anthem Protesting NFL Players

Jim Brown Cuts Colin kaepernick Throat

Ditka on Kaepernick

George Foreman Delivers Devastating Blow to Colin Kaepernick, Calls Out his ‘Privilege’

After 12 Cleveland Browns Kneel, All Stand After Who Showed Up Before The Next Game

After Browns Players Refused to Stand for Anthem, Cleveland Cops Respond With Their Own ‘Protest’

Former Army Ranger Alejandro Villanueva Is Only Steelers Player To Stand For National Anthem

Former Army Ranger Is Only Steelers Player To Stand For National Anthem, Alejandro Villanueva

BREAKING: NFL Executives Just Woke To Devastating News About The Rest Of Their Season Today

Trump responds after a day of NFL protests

Trump: I wish NFL owners respected US flag

“NFL Ratings will go down” Ben Shapiro Reacts to NFL Players taking the knee during national anthem

New Election Themes: Two Americas (NFL Prima Donnas v. America) & Alejandro Villanueva, Patriot/Hero

NFL Dolts, Cretins, Boeotians and Meatheads Misread the Kneel Protest Lunacy

NFL Pansies: The REAL #TakeTheKnee Problem | Louder With Crowder

LIMBAUGH: Trump Is Redefining What A Politician Is

‘GENUINE SADNESS’: Rush Limbaugh Didn’t Watch ‘Sunday Night Football’ For First Time In 45 Years

Limbaugh Warns Sports Media People Who Support Actions Against The Flag: ‘NO WAY Trump Loses This’

LIMBAUGH: The Lefts Success In Destroying The NFL Is Working To A Tee

Rush Limbaugh: NFL players want to do something that will drive away more fans (09-21-2017)

RUSH: IT’S OVER! NFL Is Never Gonna Be What It Was

Bob Costas on NFL protests and patriotism (full CNN interview)

Badass Cowboys Owner Just Went On LIVE TV And Pissed Off Every Racist Player With BIG Announcement

Eagles QB Just Shut Up Every Whiny Protester In The NFL With Shocking Announcement He Made

Chiefs Fan EXPLODES With Rage After Seeing What Disrespectful NFL Player Suddenly Did On Field

The Truth About The Colin Kaepernick National Anthem Controversy

Colin Kaepernick explains why he won’t stand during National Anthem

Kaepernick comes SO close to new NFL deal, then BLM activist girlfriend dashes dreams

Navy admiral burns Colin Kaepernick

Vet who lost legs has message for Kaepernick

[youtbe=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpsM6zoSPuE]

NFL Legend John Elway Just ENDED ALL Racist Player Protests After League Commissioner Refused

ROGER GOODELL IGNORING LEAGUE’S OWN RULES IN LETTING PLAYERS PROTEST ANTHEM

At the risk of fines and suspensions, the NFL requires players on the field during the anthem, standing

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is such a stickler for adhering to the intricacies of the NFL’s league rule book that he infamously waged a years-long, multi million-dollar battle with the New England Patriots trying to prove that balls used in the 2014 AFC championship between the Pats and the Indianapolis Colts were under-inflated.

After a federal vacated Goodell’s four-game suspension of Tom Brady, Goodell appealed to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; by 2016, the Pats appeared to lose their will to keep fighting the case and eventually accepted the penalty (Brady’s four game suspension, $1 million fine, and the loss of two draft picks).

Yet the NFL commissioner, notorious for his unusually massive compensation package — rumored to be north of $40 million/year, making his total compensation of $156 million higher than Tom Brady’s  — is taking a decidedly less fastidious approach to the rules governing the national anthem at NFL games.

The NFL rule book specifically requires both teams appear on the field for the playing of the anthem, standing, remaining quiet, and holding their helmets in their left hands. Failure to do so can result in fines, suspensions, and the loss of draft picks.

The rules are found on pages A62-63 of the league’s game operations manual:

The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem.

During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.

On Sunday, almost a hundred players took a knee during the national anthem. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Chicago Beats, Seattle Seahawks, and Tennessee Titans all opted against even coming out on the field for the anthem.

But rather than warn these players and team they’re violating league rules, Goodell is focusing his anger at President Trump, who said in a speech Friday that the NFL team owners should require their players to stand during the anthem.

“The way we reacted today, and this weekend, made me proud,” Goodell said. “I’m proud of our league.”

On Saturday, Goodell responded directly to Trump, accusing the president of disrespecting the league, which asipires to “create a sense of unity in our country and our culture”:

The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture.  There is no better example than the amazing response from our clubs and players to the terrible natural disasters we’ve experienced over the last month.  Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.

We’ve reached out to the NFL, asking if any of the players or teams that skipped the national anthem will face discipline; we’ll update this report with their comments.

Goodell hasn’t always been so supportive of his players engaging in free speech on the field.

  • Last year the NFL barred the Dallas Cowboys from wearing a decal on their helmet honoring the five police officers killed in a domestic terror attack.
  • The NFL also banned the Tennessee Titan’s linebacker, Avery Williamson, from honoring 9/11 victims by wearing cleats that read “9-11/01” and “Never Forget” on the 15th anniversary of the terror attack.
  • The NFL fined Robert Griffin III $10,000 for wearing a t-shirt during a press conference that said “Operation Patience.” (The shirt was created by Reebok and players are required to only wear clothing sold by Nike.)
  • RGIII also ran into trouble with the league for wearing a shirt that said “Know Jesus, Know Peace.”
  • The NFL has banned players from wearing Beats headphones on the field (doing so violated the league’s deal with Bose).
  • The Steelers’ William Gay was fined for wearing purple cleats, which he did to raise awareness for domestic violence (an issue Goodell claims the league takes seriously).
  • Goodell’s opposition to speech he dislikes is so determined that he even has a Patriots fan who flipped him off fired from his job.

UPDATE: Snopes.com claims that this rule does not, in fact, exist. The article cites the rule quoted above and reports “No such wording appears in the 2017 version of the Official Playing Rules of the National Football League.”

Yet the NFL’s Game Operations Manual — the 200-plus book the league refers to as its “bible” — is different than its rulebook. It is not available to the public. The rule cited above comes from the league itself, via the Washington Post.

The Post reported Sunday that the NFL confirmed the rule’s existence but emphasized their ability to enforce it selectively:

Under the league rule, the failure to be on the field for the anthem may result in discipline such as a fine, suspension or loss of a draft pick. But a league official said the key phrase is “may” result, adding he won’t speculate on whether the Steelers would be disciplined.

The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league’s game operations manual, according to a league source.

UPDATE TWO: After Grabien contacted Snopes.com, bringing the above facts to their attention, the author amended his article, confirming the existence of the above-state rule, and changed their description of this story from “false” to “mixture.”

 

https://news.grabien.com/story-roger-goodell-ignoring-leagues-own-rule-book-letting-players

The Politicization of Everything

Everybody loses in the Trump-NFL brawl over the national anthem.

Baltimore Ravens players kneel during the playing of the U.S. national anthem before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium in London, Sunday Sept. 24, 2017.
Baltimore Ravens players kneel during the playing of the U.S. national anthem before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium in London, Sunday Sept. 24, 2017. PHOTO: MATT DUNHAM/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Healthy democracies have ample room for politics but leave a larger space for civil society and culture that unites more than divides. With the politicization of the National Football League and the national anthem, the Divided States of America are exhibiting a very unhealthy level of polarization and mistrust.

The progressive forces of identity politics started this poisoning of America’s favorite spectator sport last year by making a hero of Colin Kaepernick for refusing to stand for “The Star-Spangled Banner” before games. They raised the stakes this year by turning him into a progressive martyr because no team had picked him up to play quarterback after he opted out of his contract with the San Francisco 49ers.

The NFL is a meritocracy, and maybe coaches and general managers thought he wasn’t good enough for the divisions he might cause in a locker room or among fans. But the left said it was all about race and class.

All of this is cultural catnip for Donald Trump, who pounced on Friday night at a rally and on the weekend on Twitter with his familiar combination of gut political instinct, rhetorical excess, and ignorance. “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he’s fired. He’s fired,’” Mr. Trump said Friday.

No doubt most Americans agree with Mr. Trump that they don’t want their flag disrespected, especially by millionaire athletes. But Mr. Trump never stops at reasonable, and so he called for kneeling players to be fired or suspended, and if the league didn’t comply for fans to “boycott” the NFL.

He also plunged into the debate over head injuries without a speck of knowledge about the latest brain science, claiming that the NFL was “ruining the game” by trying to stop dangerous physical hits. This is the kind of rant you’d hear in a lousy sports bar.

Mr. Trump has managed to unite the players and owners against him, though several owners supported him for President and donated to his inaugural. The owners were almost obliged to defend their sport, even if their complaints that Mr. Trump was “divisive” ignored the divisive acts by Mr. Kaepernick and his media allies that injected politics into football in the first place.

Americans don’t begrudge athletes their free-speech rights—see the popularity of Charles Barkley —but disrespecting the national anthem puts partisanship above a symbol of nationhood that thousands have died for. Players who chose to kneel shouldn’t be surprised that fans around the country booed them on Sunday. This is the patriotic sentiment that they are helping Mr. Trump exploit for what he no doubt thinks is his own political advantage.

American democracy was healthier when politics at the ballpark was limited to fans booing politicians who threw out the first ball—almost as a bipartisan obligation. This showed a healthy skepticism toward the political class. But now the players want to be politicians and use their fame to lecture other Americans, the parsons of the press corps want to make them moral spokesmen, and the President wants to run against the players.

The losers are the millions of Americans who would rather cheer for their teams on Sunday as a respite from work and the other divisions of American life.

http://www.dailywire.com/node/21448#

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: the crowd at StubHub Center for a San DiegoLos Angeles Chargers game was awful. A huge portion of the crowd were Kansas City Chiefs fans, and for the fourth time in four games at the stadium (including two preseason contests) there were plenty of empty seats. And just a friendly reminder, StubHub only seats 27,000.

How bad was it? Well, the Chargers knew the crowd was so pro-Chiefs that they didn’t even do player introductions over the public address system due to fears their own players would get booed. In their home stadium. In a new city the league told us was so desperate to have the NFL that it could support two teams. A city Dean Spanossaid contained 25 percent of the team’s fans.

VIDEO
The NFL should be helping the Chargers stay in San Diego and NOT Los Angeles | THE HERD

So, the “Fight for LA” is going swimmingly it appears.

Check out some of the tweets and crowd shots from the day:

It true that the Chargers didn’t introduce their players, fearing the reaction?

No player intros. Last time I can remember that happening for home game was vs. Raiders. When they were overwhelmed by visiting fans

These are from the second quarter:

The Chargers are driving at the end of the 2nd quarter and home team side isn’t there. 

To add yet another embarrassment to this mess, this banner was flying over the stadium before the game:

As I and may others have said repeatedly, the Chargers move to Los Angeles was moronic, mishandled and has been a disaster. Ultimately it will be a failure and the league knows it.

UPDATE: The Chargers claim the game was a sellout:

To explain that “sellout,” remember the NFL only counts “tickets distributed” not the amount of people who go through the turnstiles. At this point it’s clear ticket brokers bought up a ton of the team’s season ticket packages hoping there would be demand for re-sale tickets. The demand isn’t there, which is why those tickets have been purchased but don’t have people in them. The brokers haven’t been able to unload those tickets on anyone.

Los Angeles Chargers Welcomed Another Embarrassing Crowd In Week 3

Confirmed: NFL Losing Millions Of TV Viewers Because Of National Anthem Protests

 

JACKSONVILLE, FL – SEPTEMBER 25: Hayes Pullard #52 of the Jacksonville aJaguars nd Dante Fowler #56 raise their fists in protest during the singing of the national anthem before the game against the Baltimore Ravens (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

A headline for a story in the Sporting News this morning: “Shock poll: A third of NFL TV viewers boycotting games because of Colin Kaepernick-led protests.”

Shock? Why?

The Sporting News article says “Nearly one-third (32 percent) of adults say they’re less likely to watch NFL game telecasts because of the Kaepernick-led player protests against racial injustice, according to Rasmussen’s telephone/online survey of 1,000 American adults conducted Oct. 2-3. Only 13 percent said they were more likely to watch an NFL game because of continuing protests by Kaepernick and supporters such as Antonio Cromartie of the Colts (who was cut only two days after raising a fist during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner” in London on Sunday).”

This was very predictable.

Three weeks ago I wrote that “the national anthem protests that began with San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick and has since been copied by other players have angered many fans. And that anger may be one reason why the television ratings for the first week of NFL games were bad.” As my colleague, Brandon Katz wrote: “Both CBS’ Sunday afternoon game and NBC’s Sunday Night Football saw their lowest ratings in seven years. Throw in last night’s lackluster debut and the 2016 NFL season is off to its slowest start in recent memory in terms of TV ratings.”

Two weeks ago I wrote “it is starting to look like disrespecting the country during the national anthem is accomplishing what the concussions, domestic violence and deflategate could not do–drive down television ratings for the National Football League. Through two weeks of football the NFL’s television ratings are down across the board. The drop in ratings and viewership is unprecedented in recent years and has occurred during the protest of the national anthem, started by San Francisco 49ers backup QB Colin Kaepernick. Just last year some opined that the league’s ratings had no ceiling. That appears to be false.”

And last week I explained that “there can be no more excuses for the bad ratings, like the one offered by Billie Gold, vice president and director of programming research at Amplifi, the global buying arm of media company the Dentsu Aegis Network, who said it’s (the bad NFL tv ratings) the lack of big games and prominent names that have sacked the league the past two weeks. Nonsense. Something more visceral is causing ratings to fall. My opinion: Fans are ticked about the players protesting the national anthem.”

This morning it was confirmed by the fact that through four weeks, good games and bad, games with marquee quarterbacks and big markets, ratings are way down this year.

This poll is predictable, not shocking. Who will ultimately pay if the ratings continue to sink? The players and owners.

The National Football League will rake in roughly $4.6 billion in television fees from CBS CBS +1.85%, Walt Disney-owned ESPN , Comcast-owned NBC, Fox and DirecTV that it will equally share with its 32 teams this year. The NFL commands such a rich bounty because advertisers pay up for football’s huge ratings.

The television money is a big reason why the average NFL team is worth $2.34 billion and the average NFL player earns $2.1 million.

The networks that televise the games barely mention the protests anymore. But the fans have not forgotten.

Colin Kaepernick Fact-Checked by Liberal Sports Media

Colin Kaepernick’s anthem-kneeling protest movement may have just lost all momentum, now that his traditional supporters have started fact-checking him.

The reliably liberal NBC site Pro Football Talk used Kaepernick’s contentious conference call with Miami media to check claims the 49ers quarterback made that Cuba has “the highest literacy rate” and that, unlike the United States, Cuba “invests more in their education system than they do in their prison system.”

Shockingly, Pro Football Talk took Kaepernick to task:

Kaepernick’s comments about Castro’s Cuba are false.

Although Cuba does have a high literacy rate, it does not have “the highest literacy rate.” A country’s literacy rate can be measured in different ways, but multiple sources find other countries with higher rates than Cuba. World Atlas cites six countries with 100 percent literacy rates, and Cuba is not one of them. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization says 12 countries have a higher literacy rate than Cuba.

His claim that the United States spends more money on its prison system than on its education system is also incorrect. A study by the Brookings Institute found that total spending on prisons and jails in the United States is $80 billion a year. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, total expenditures for public elementary and secondary schools in the United States amounts to $620 billion a year. Add in the $517 billion spent on postsecondary education, and the U.S. actually spends about 14 times as much on its education system as its prison system.

Pointing out the manifold fallacies in Kaepernick’s words, and occasionally in what he wears, is old hat for conservative media. Though, it marks quite the change for sites like Pro Football Talk who once slammed Donald Trump for his criticism of Kaepernick, lauding the quarterback for “trying to make things better” in America. They also called it “silly” for people to focus on Kaepernick’s socks, which depicted cops as pigs, even though he wore those socks less than two months after five Dallas police officers died by sniper fire.

So, to recap: Kaepernick lost his hero Fidel Castro, lost to the Dolphins, and lost Pro Football Talk. Kind of a rough week.

Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter: @themightygwinn

http://www.breitbart.com/sports/2016/11/28/colin-kaepernick-fact-checked-liberal-sports-media/

 

How Did Kaepernick Become A Leftist?

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

ByROBERT KRAYCHIK

September 24, 2017

 61.5k views

Colin Kaepernick’s leftism crystallized as he attended courses at the University of California, Berkeley, after joining the NFL as a San Francisco 49ers quarterback in 2011.

The New York Post’s Shaun King spoke of Kaepernick’s political “metamorphosis” with The Intercept’s Jeremy Scahill in an interview published last Sunday:

Colin [told me] he’s always, you know, he’s always been bothered by police brutality, but he never understood it as the systemic problem that it was. And he’s a young guy — he’s 21 when he came into the league — and he literally started auditing a few classes at Berkeley, and from those classes began understanding what systemic racism was, began understanding the systems behind mass incarceration or white supremacy or police brutality. And he was doing this with very few people, including myself, not knowing. I had no idea he was auditing classes. He was kind of undergoing a personal metamorphosis, and he was doing it while he was recovering from the surgeries that he had had.

And it just caused him to be more acutely aware and sensitive to it. And during last summer, he saw the deaths of Philando Castile in Minnesota and Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge and they just affected him personally. And really without talking to anybody, he decided at a pre-season game that he wasn’t going to stand up for the national anthem. And so Colin and I had been talking for couple of months at that point, and I think it really was a spur of the moment, gut decision, where he heard the anthem and just decided like, “I’m not going to stand up for that. I don’t feel like it. I don’t believe it.” And he did that for two weeks before anybody even noticed. These were just preseason games. And when they noticed, a local reporter asked him about it at the end of the game, and that he hadn’t prepared any bullets and he just said: Listen, I’m disturbed by the crisis of police brutality in America. I don’t believe that America keeps its promises to black people in particular. And, you know he was doing this to be in solidarity with victims of police brutality.

Kaepernick has “a fierce love for this country,” alleges King, adding that “a lot of what Colin does is because he wants to see this country get better.”

Throughout the interview, both King and Scahill frame African Americans as a neo-proletariat in modern America via their shared neo-Marxist sociological lens.

Kaepernick’s class selection included one on “the history of black representation in popular culture,” taught by Ameer Hasan Loggins.

Loggins wrote of his friendship with Kaepernick in an August-published post, praising Kaepernick’s anti-Americanism as a moral endeavor:

Time has proven Colin to be on the right side of history. The sentiment around him has become more nuanced amongst those that support him and his stance. But his detractors are still using dispelled, preseason talking points: that he’s disrespecting a song that has been proven to celebrate the institution of slavery; a false narrative about dishonoring the troops, while troops across the country have publicly come out in support of him and his protest; that pig socks make whatever else he does irrelevant. …

Colin will forever be known as a champion of the people.

http://www.dailywire.com/node/21448#

Colin Kaepernick

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Colin Kaepernick
refer to caption

Kaepernick with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012
Free agent
Position: Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: November 3, 1987 (age 29)
Place of birth: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Height: 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight: 230 lb (104 kg)
Career information
High school: Turlock (CA) Pitman
College: Nevada
NFL Draft: 2011 / Round: 2 / Pick: 36
Career history
Career highlights and awards
  • 2× WAC Offensive Player of the Year (2008, 2010)
Career NFL statistics as of 2016
TDInt: 72–30
Passing yards: 12,271
Completion percentage: 59.8
Passer rating: 88.9
Rushing yards: 2,300
Rushing touchdowns: 13
Player stats at NFL.com

Colin Rand Kaepernick (/ˈkæpərnɪk/KAP-er-nick;[1] born November 3, 1987) is an American footballquarterback who is currently a free agent. Kaepernick played college football at the University of Nevada, where he was named the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Offensive Player of the Year twice and became the only player in NCAA Division I FBS history to amass 10,000 passing yards and 4,000 rushing yards in a career. After graduating, he was selected by the San Francisco 49ers in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft.

Kaepernick began his professional football career as a backup quarterback to Alex Smith, and he became the 49ers’ starter in the middle of the 2012 season after Smith suffered a concussion. He then remained the team’s starting quarterback for the rest of the season, leading the team to their first Super Bowl appearance since 1994. During the 2013 season, his first full season as a starter, Kaepernick helped the 49ers reach the NFC Championship Game. Over the next three seasons, however, Kaepernick and the 49ers failed to qualify for the playoffs. Kaepernick’s performance was pointed out as a major reason, which led to him being benched multiple times over that span.

During the 2016 season, Kaepernick gained nationwide attention when he began protesting by “taking a knee” (and not standing) while the United States national anthem was being played before the start of games. His actions were motivated by what he viewed as the oppression of people of color in the country.[2][3] Kaepernick’s controversial behavior prompted a wide variety of responses, which included additional athletes in the NFL and other American sports leagues protesting the anthem in various ways. Following the season’s end, he opted to drop out of his contract with the 49ers to become a free agent. His free agency status has also been the subject of discussion and controversy, with some believing that his protests, and not performance, were the reason he was not signed with a team for the 2017 season.

Early life

Kaepernick was born in 1987 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to Heidi Russo, a 19-year-old white woman of Irish and Bohemian[dubious ] descent who was single at the time.[4] His birth father, an African American man, left Russo before Colin was born.[5][6] Russo placed Colin for adoption with Rick and Teresa Kaepernick, a white couple who had two children—son Kyle and daughter Devon—and were looking for a boy after losing two other sons to heart defects.[5][7] Kaepernick became the youngest of their three children. He lived in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, until age four, and attended grade school in Turlock, California.[8][9]

When Kaepernick was eight years old, he began playing youth football as a defensive end and punter. He then became his youth team’s starting quarterback at age nine, and he completed his first competitive pass for a long touchdown.[8] A 4.0 GPA student[10] at John H. Pitman High School in Turlock, California, Kaepernick played football, basketball and baseball and was nominated for All-State selection in all three sports his senior year. He was the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the Central California Conference in football, leading his school to its first-ever playoff victory. In basketball, he was a first-team all CCC selection at forward and led his 16th-ranked team to a near upset of #1 ranked Oak Ridge High School in the opening round of playoffs. In that game, Kaepernick scored 34 points but Ryan Anderson scored 50 to beat the Pitman.[11]

College career

Recruitment

Kaepernick achieved most of his accolades in high school as a baseball pitcher and received several scholarship offers in that sport,[8] yet he desperately wanted to play college football. He was almost 6′ 5″ as a senior, but weighed only 170 pounds (77 kg) and his coaches generally kept him from running the ball to limit his risk of injury.[9] He also had poor throwing mechanics, despite his strong arm.[8] During his junior year, Larry Nigro, Pitman’s head coach at the time, made a highlight tape that Kaepernick’s brother, Kyle, copied to DVD, then sent to about 100 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS, then known as Division I-A) programs. Kaepernick received some interest but no scholarship offers.[8] Even as a senior, he received little attention from FBS schools. Although the University of Nevada, Renocoaching staff frequently watched video of his high school team, no one from the Nevada Wolf Pack football staff came to Turlock to see him play during his senior football season.[9] Nevada head coach Chris Ault decided to offer him a scholarship after one of his assistants, Barry Sacks, saw Kaepernick dominate a high school basketball game on an evening he was suffering from a fever of 102 °F (39 °C). Nevada was the only school to offer him a football scholarship, but was concerned that he would opt for baseball until he signed in February 2006.[9]

Baseball

Kaepernick was a two-time California all-state baseball player and was listed as a draftable prospect on Major League Baseball‘s website in the class of 2006. He earned Northern California athlete of the week honors as a pitcher. As a senior in high school, he threw a 92 mph (148 km/h) fastball, as reported during Kaepernick’s first college football start in 2007 against Boise State.[12] He was also a member of the Brewers Grey squad in the 2005 Area Code games. In his senior year of high school Kaepernick had an ERA of 1.265 with 13 starts and 10 complete games. He finished the year with an 11–2 record with 97 strikeouts and 39 walks.[citation needed]

In the 2009 Major League Baseball Draft, Kaepernick was drafted in the 43rd round by the Chicago Cubs.[13] He decided that he wanted to continue to play football at the University of Nevada and chose not to sign with the Cubs.[14]

Football

2007 (freshman season)

Kaepernick started his college career at Nevada playing in 11 of the team’s 13 games. He finished the season with 19 passing touchdowns, three interceptions, and 2,175 passing yards with a 53.8% completion percentage. Kaepernick also added 593 rushing yards and six rushing touchdowns as the Nevada Wolf Pack finished 6-7.[15]

2008 (sophomore season)

As a sophomore, Kaepernick became just the fifth player in NCAA history to pass for 2,000 yards and rush for 1,000 or more yards in a single season. Some of his notable statistical achievements were:

  • Only NCAA quarterback in 2008 to pass for 2,500 or more yards and rush for 1,000 or more yards.
  • Ranked second among all NCAA QB’s in rushing yardage with 1,130.
  • Ranked seventh among all NCAA players with 7.02 yards per carry.
  • Was tied ninth among all NCAA players with 17 rushing TD’s.

Kaepernick, with 1,130 rushing yards, and running back Vai Taua, with 1,521 rushing yards, made 2008 the first year in school history that Nevada had two 1,000-yard rushers in the same season.[16]

Despite playing the entire second half with an ankle injury, he set a new Humanitarian Bowl record with 370 yards passing and was awarded the MVP in a losing effort. He was named the WAC Offensive Player of the Year at the end of the season. He was the first sophomore to win this award since Marshall Faulk of San Diego State did in 1992. He was also named first team All-WAC quarterback.[citation needed]

2009 (junior season)

Kaepernick was named the pre-season WAC Offensive Player of the Year at the WAC Media’s event in July. On August 3 it was announced he was named to the Davey O’Brien Award pre-season watch list. On August 14 it was announced that he was named to the pre-season Maxwell Award watch list and on August 17 to the Manning Award watch list. Kaepernick led the Wolf Pack to an 8–5 record and a second-place finish in the WAC behind undefeated Boise State. He was named second team All-WAC quarterback. He was the first player in Nevada history to earn the team’s MVP award twice, doing so in 2008 as well.[citation needed]

He finished the 2009 season with 2,052 passing yards and 1,183 rushing yards. He became the first player in NCAA history to record back-to-back 2,000/1,000 yard seasons. His 1,183 rush yards along with Luke Lippincott’s 1,034 and Vai Taua’s 1,345 makes him a part of the first trio of teammates in NCAA history to rush for 1,000 yards each in the same season.[citation needed]

2010 (senior season)

Passing against Hawaii in 2010.

Entering the 2010 NCAA season, Kaepernick ranked first among active college football players in rushing touchdowns. He was second in yards-per-carry (behind Wolf Pack teammate Vai Taua), total offense-per-game, and touchdowns scored. He ranked third in yards-per-play and fourth in pass touchdowns and total number of offensive plays. He was a counselor at the prestigious Manning Passing Academy event in Thibodaux, Louisiana, during the 2010 camp. His performance drew praise from various NFL and ESPN personnel including former New York Giants quarterback Jesse Palmer who said of Kaepernick, “by far, the strongest arm in the camp”.[17]

Kaepernick in 2010.

It was also announced that Kaepernick, along with teammates Taua and Lippincott, would have a display in the College Football Hall of Fame commemorating their being the first players in NCAA history to each break 1,000 yards rushing on the same team during the same season.[18] Kaepernick was named to the watch list for six major college football awards: the Manning Award, the Davey O’Brien Award, the Paul Hornung Award, the Maxwell Award, the Unitas Award, and the Walter Camp Award.

On November 26, Kaepernick led his team to a 34–31 overtime victory against the previously undefeated Boise State Broncos, snapping a 24-game win streak that had dated back to the 2008 Poinsettia Bowl. This game was played on Nevada’s senior night, the final home game for Kaepernick. Nevada Head Coach Chris Ault would later call this game the “most important win in program history”. During this game, Kaepernick surpassed 1,000 rushing yards for this season, becoming the first player in NCAA history to have over 2,000 yards passing and 1,000 yards rushing for three consecutive seasons. Along with Taua’s 131 yards rushing in the game, the duo became the NCAA’s all-time leaders in rushing yards by teammates (8,285) passing the legendary SMU “Pony Express” duo of Eric Dickerson and Craig James (8,193).[19]

On December 4 against Louisiana Tech University, Kaepernick joined Florida’s Tim Tebow as the second quarterback in FBS history to throw for 20 touchdowns and run for 20 in the same season. Later that same evening, Auburn’s Cam Newton joined Tebow and Kaepernick as the third. Kaepernick’s three rushing touchdowns in that game also placed him in a tie with former Nebraska quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Eric Crouch for most rushing touchdowns in FBS history by a quarterback with 59 in his career.[20] Nevada claimed a share of the WAC title after defeating Louisiana Tech. Kaeperick was named WAC Co-Offensive Player of the Year with Kellen Moore, who won the award in 2009.[21]

Kaepernick is the only quarterback in the history of Division I FBS college football to have passed for over 10,000 yards and rushed for over 4,000 yards in a collegiate career. He is also the only Division 1 FBS quarterback to have passed for over 2,000 yards and rushed for over 1,000 yards in a single season three times in a career (consecutively).[citation needed]

Kaepernick graduated from Nevada in December 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in business management and is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity.[citation needed]

Football statistics

Passing Rushing
Season Team GP Att Comp Comp % Yards TD INT RAT Att Yards Avg TD
2006 Nevada Redshirt
2007 Nevada 11 247 133 53.8% 2,175 19 3 150.8 105 593 5.6 6
2008 Nevada 13 383 208 54.3% 2,849 22 7 132.1 161 1,130 7.0 17
2009 Nevada 13 282 166 58.9% 2,052 20 6 139.1 161 1,183 7.3 16
2010 Nevada 14 359 233 64.9% 3,022 21 8 150.5 173 1,206 7.0 20
Career 1,271 740 58.2% 10,098 82 24 142.5 600 4,112 6.9 59

Professional career

Upon graduation, Kaepernick signed with XAM Sports and Entertainment. He spent time in Atlanta, Georgia, training for the NFL Scouting Combine at Competitive Edge Sports with trainer Chip Smith and quarterbacks coach Roger Theder.

2011 NFL Draft

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt Arm length Hand size 40‑yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20‑ss 3‑cone Vert jump Broad BP Wonderlic
6 ft 4 58 in
(1.95 m)
233 lb
(106 kg)
33 12 in
(0.85 m)
9 18 in
(0.23 m)
4.53 s 1.62 s 2.63 s 4.18 s 6.85 s 32 12 in
(0.83 m)
9 ft 7 in
(2.92 m)
x reps 37
All values from NFL Combine[22]

On April 29, 2011, the San Francisco 49ers traded up with the Denver Broncos from the thirteenth pick in the second round (#45 overall) to select Kaepernick as the fourth pick in the second round (#36 overall) at the 2011 NFL Draft. The Broncos received picks 45, 108, and 141 overall in exchange for the 36th overall pick.

San Francisco 49ers

2011 season

For the 2011 preseason, Kaepernick completed 24-of-50 passes for 257 yards and five interceptions.[23] Kaepernick spent the 2011 season as backup to Alex Smith and played his first game in Week 4 (October 2) on the road against the Philadelphia Eagles.[23] On third down and 17 during the first quarter, he came in for Smith as quarterback with the offense in shotgun formation and handed off to Frank Gore, who ran for five yards.[24] In the Week 5 (October 9) home game, a 48–3 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kaepernick completed three passes for 35 yards. However, he failed to complete two passes in the 49ers’ Week 13 (December 4) game, a 26–0 win over the St. Louis Rams.[23] The 49ers finished the 2011 regular season 13–3 but lost the NFC championship to the eventual Super Bowl championNew York Giants.

2012 season

Kaepernick in Super Bowl XLVII.

In 2012 against the New York Jets, Kaepernick scored his first career touchdown on a seven-yard run.