- Medicare For All. Democratic Socialist Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortezstated, “I reject the idea that single payer is impossible.” At least five of the announced Democratic Party candidates are making the same promise. Medicare for All is also part of the Green New Deal (GND).
- Green New Deal H.R. 109. A number of Democrats, including Kamala Harris, have endorsed H.R. 109 the Green New Deal. The proposal requires America stop using fossil fuels and those means of transportation that use fossil fuels. The GND plan requires, “meeting 100 percent of the power demand in the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources” via a “10-year national mobilization.”
“Systematic Injustices”. The GND states,
“Whereas climate change, pollution, and environmental destruction have
exacerbated systemic racial, regional, social, environmental, and economic
injustices (referred to in this preamble as ‘‘systemic injustices’’)
by disproportionately affecting indigenous peoples, communities
of color, migrant communities, deindustrialized communities,
depopulated rural communities, the poor, low-income workers, women, the
elderly, the unhoused, people
with disabilities, and youth (referred to in this preamble as ‘‘frontline and vulnerable communities’’)
- Unionize American Workers. The Green New Deal requires, “strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment.” All workers means every worker.
- Livable Wage for All Citizens and Non-Citizens. The GND states, ” guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.” All people of the United states includes illegal aliens.
- Guaranteeing a National $15 Minimum Wage. Corey Booker has pledged to enact a national $15 minimum wage in 15 test areas. The current minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. The minimum wage was first introduced under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA). Passed under President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, this act called for the first national minimum wage of 25 cents an hour (the equivalent of $4.00 today).
- Wealth Tax. Senator Elizabeth Warren has proposed a, “‘wealth tax’ of 2% on net worth over $50 million and 3% over $1 billion designed to raise $2.75 trillion over a decade.”
- Free Public College Tuition. Socialist Bernie Sanders has proposed a College For All Act. The act would, “Eliminate Undergraduate Tuition at 4-year Public Colleges and Universities. This legislation would provide $47 billion per year to states to eliminate undergraduate tuition and fees at public colleges and universities.”
- Pay Reparations for Slavery. Several Democratic candidates have suggested paying reparations. Of note is the proposal by Marianne Williamson to annually pay $10 billion in slavery reparations for a period of 10 years to the African American communities. Cost $100 billion.
- Cancel All Student Loan Debt. There are approximately 44 million students who have $1.5 trillion of student load debt. Democratic Presidential candidate Wayne Messam has proposed student loan forgiveness.
- Give Every Child Born in America a U.S. Treasury Bond (Baby Bond). Corey Booker in 2018 introduced a bill that would provide an account with $1,000 to every baby born in the U.S. The accounts, dubbed baby bonds, would be eligible for an up to $2,000 deposit each year depending on family income. This Baby Bond would include anchor babies of illegal aliens.
- Social Security For All. The Daily Caller reported, “Democratic New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a 2020 hopeful, said social security and a pathway to citizenship should be rights for immigrants “in the country now” Tuesday at a campaign event in Iowa. “I have a lot of ideas,” Gillibrand said. “First, we need comprehensive immigration reform. If you are in this country now, you must have the right to pay into social security, to pay your taxes, to pay into the local school system, and to have a pathway to citizenship.”
Saturday, March 23, 2019
“If you wish to be a success in the world, promise everything, deliver nothing.” – Napoleon Bonaparte
I have been watching the candidates for President of the United States of America. We know where President Trump stands on issues. We are learning more and more about the Democratic Party candidates policy positions as each day passes.
It appears that each candidate is outdoing the other by making promises.
Question: Can, or will, Democrats deliver on those promises?
Here is a list of promises made by candidates that could directly impact Americans, and non-Americans, to date:
We are sure that some, if not all, of these proposals will be debated during the Democratic Presidential primary. The question is how many of these, and perhaps other policy proposals, will be added to the Democratic Party platform?
As American politician John Fleming wrote, “I think always, when you have a candidate promising free stuff, and another promising less stuff or nothing, the one who promises more is always going to have the advantage.”
Joseph Goebbels wrote:
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”
Free stuff is the “big lie” because eventually the political, economic and military consequences will appear as they have in Venezuela.
The Democratic Party candidates are rushing to promise free everything to voters, but can they deliver anything?
Friday, March 22, 2019
By Elizabeth Zwirz, Alex Pappas | Fox News
Special Counsel Robert Mueller has submitted to Attorney General Bill Barr his long-awaited report on the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential raceand possible collusion with Trump associates -- marking the end of the politically explosive probe and the beginning of a new battle over its contents and implications.
Mueller is "not recommending any further indictments," a senior DOJ official told Fox News.
The report was delivered Friday afternoon to the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s office and it was delivered to Barr’s office within minutes, a senior DOJ official told Fox News. The White House was notified that the DOJ had received the report around 4:45 p.m., before lawmakers on Capitol Hill were informed. Neither the White House or Congress have seen the actual report.
Both Barr and Rosenstein have seen the report, according to a senior DOJ official.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted following the report's submission.
"The next steps are up to Attorney General Barr, and we look forward to the process taking its course," she said. "The White House has not received or been briefed on the Special Counsel’s report."
Rudy Giuliani and Jay Sekulow, both of whom are counselors to Trump, also released a joint statement.
“We’re pleased that the Office of Special Counsel has delivered its report to the attorney general pursuant to the regulations," the statement said. "Attorney General Barr will determine the appropriate next steps.”
Following word that Mueller was not recommending more indictments, Giuliani told Fox News that they were "confident" the investigation would show there was no collusion.
“This marks the end of the investigation. We await a disclosure of the facts. We are confident that there is no finding of collusion by the President and this underscores what the President has been saying from the beginning - that he did nothing wrong.”
Several lawmakers, including Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., received a letter about the report's submisision. Graham is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Feinstein is the ranking member.
“Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III has concluded his investigation of the Russian interference in the 2016 election and related matters," the letter said.
Barr also said that he “may be in a position to advise you of the Special Counsel’s principal conclusions as soon as this weekend.”
“Separately, I intend to consult with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Special Counsel Mueller to determine what other information from the report can be released to Congress and the public consistent with law, including the Special Counsel regulations, and the Department’s long-standing practices and policies," it continued.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., released a joint statement, urging that the report's contents be made public.
“Now that Special Counsel Mueller has submitted his report to the Attorney General, it is imperative for Mr. Barr to make the full report public and provide its underlying documentation and findings to Congress," the statement said. "Attorney General Barr must not give President Trump, his lawyers or his staff any ‘sneak preview’ of Special Counsel Mueller's findings or evidence, and the White House must not be allowed to interfere in decisions about what parts of those findings or evidence are made public."
“The Special Counsel’s investigation focused on questions that go to the integrity of our democracy itself: whether foreign powers corruptly interfered in our elections, and whether unlawful means were used to hinder that investigation," the statement continued. "The American people have a right to the truth. The watchword is transparency.”
It’s not clear how much, if any, of the report will be made public or provided to Congress. None of Mueller’s findings were immediately released.
The president has repeatedly decried Mueller’s probe as a “witch hunt,” emphatically denying he or his campaign colluded with Russia to undermine Democrat Hillary Clinton’s chances in the 2016 race. The president has alleged a slew of internal “conflicts of interest” from Mueller’s team and has previously said his legal team is drafting a “major counter report” in response to its findings.
Mueller’s investigation, which was initially ordered to look into the 2016 election in May of 2017, has gone on for almost two years. It has expanded to probe financial crimes of Trump associates before the election, conversations Trump’s national security adviser had with the Russians during the transition and whether Trump obstructed justice with his comments and actions related to the probe.
Mueller, the former director of the FBI under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, was appointed special counsel by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in May of 2017. In his order, Rosenstein directed Mueller to investigate any links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump campaign, as well any other matters that arose from the investigation.
“If the Special Counsel believes it is necessary and appropriate, the Special Counsel is authorized to prosecute federal crimes arising from the investigation of these matters,” Rosenstein wrote to Mueller.
Since then, Mueller’s team has indicted, convicted, or won guilty pleas from 34 people and three companies as part of an investigation that has also probed issues unrelated to the 2016 campaign.
Twenty six Russian nationals and three Russian companies have been charged with interfering in the 2016 presidential election.
But none of the Trump associates connected to Trump have been charged with crimes related to collusion, though Mueller’s team charged former Trump associate Roger Stone in January with lying about his communications with WikiLeaks, which published hacked Democratic emails during the election.
Other convictions include: former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who both pleaded guilty to making false statements in 2017.
Former campaign adviser Rick Gates in 2018 pleaded guilty and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort was convicted and later pleaded guilty in a separate financial crimes case dating back before the 2016 election.
Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to making false statements in a case brought by Mueller in November.
Alex van der Zwaan, a London-based lawyer, pleaded guilty to making false statements this year, and Richard Pinedo, a California man, pleaded guilty to identity fraud in 2018.
Mueller has also looked at actions taken by Trump after he was sworn in as president, like his firing of FBI director James Comey and his ousting of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Sessions, once one of President Trump’s most loyal and trusted advisers infuriated Trump over his recusal from the Russia investigation. In March 2017, Sessions announced his plans to recuse himself after reports surfaced detailing undisclosed conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the campaign.
At the time of his recusal, Sessions said he met with the “relevant senior career department officials” to discuss the issue.
“Having concluded those meetings today, I have decided to recuse myself from any existing or future investigations of any matters related in any way to the campaigns for president of the United States,” Sessions said.
Rosenstein, Sessions’ number two at the Justice Department, then took control of the investigation and decided to appoint Mueller to take over the probe.
Rosenstein said at the time, “What I have determined is that based upon the unique circumstances the public interest requires me to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command.”
Mueller said in a statement, upon his appointment: “I accept this responsibility and will discharge it to the best of my ability.’’
Rosenstein later ceded oversight to then-acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker when he took over for Sessions. But the report was submitted to Barr, who was confirmed in February by the Senate as attorney general.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.
Fox News' Jake Gibson and John Roberts contributed to this report.
U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) speaks during a town hall meeting at Canyon Springs High School on March 1, 2019, in North Las Vegas, Nevada. Harris is campaigning for the 2020 Democratic nomination for president. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
The disgusting, pathetic pandering of many of the Democrat 2020 presidential hopefuls to the far-left progressive movement is embarrassing and beneath the dignity of the Office they seek.
It is pitiful!
In a blatant appeal to the radical wing of the Democratic Party and those new left-wing extremists who are dominating the Democratic debate, they are ignoring the vast majority of hardworking Americans.
If the past month has shown us anything, it has made clear that the Democratic Party, through a few of its newly elected radical Members of Congress and many of its 2020 presidential contenders, is redefining itself to appeal to the radical progressive left — not mainstream America.
They have taken pandering to new low trying to see who can become more outlandish:
- Advocating reparations for slavery with no criteria as to whom would benefit: would recipients include privileged blacks who have no family history of American slavery such as 2020 candidate Senator Kamala Harris, D-CA?
- Failing to condemn infanticide.
- Packing and reorganizing the Supreme Court.
- Eliminating the Electoral College (so only the large liberal urban states will select presidents).
- Lowering the federal voting age to 16 to “capture” young voters who would most likely be sympathetic to the socialistic free medical care and education policies advocated by many of the 2020 wannabees.
- Expressing neither sympathy nor empathy for families of those killed by illegal immigrants and illegal drugs which are pouring across the southwestern border.
- Condemning Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for enforcing immigration laws while taking sides with illegal immigrants and defending sanctuary cities.
- Failing to acknowledge and condemn sex trafficking and abuse of children, especially young girls by drug cartels.
- Allowing illegal immigrants to participate in the social security system.
If these examples of pandering were not enough, the height of pandering would be for a male candidate to announce — before the primaries — that he is selecting a black or white female as his running mate!
Pandering isn’t limited to the candidates.
It also extends to the Democratic leaders and establishment.
In the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives, rather than risk offending Muslims and blacks by specifically criticizing black Somali-American Muslim Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, D-Minn, for her anti-Semitic comments, Democrats chose to slap Jews and Israel in the face and opted for a watered-down resolution shielding her and condemning virtually all forms of bigotry — not really a hard sell.
In the Senate, rather than stand up for the rights of children to live after a botched abortion, Democrats pandered to Planned Parenthood and the abortion lobby and refused to support a bill that would have penalized doctors who failed to exercise care in saving the lives of children who survive an abortion or attempted abortion.
While candidates play the “reparations” game to pander to blacks, they do not let such pandering get in the way of maintaining power.
It seems like only yesterday that Democrats, including some of the candidates, were clamoring for the resignations of the Governor and Attorney General of Virginia for appearing in black face — until it was learned that the successor to the Governor could be a Republican since the black Lt. Governor was facing allegations from two different women.
Democratic indignation over black face suddenly evaporated.
The real shame is the silence of what used to be mainstream Democrats who appear to be afraid of, or are intimidated by, these new left-wing radicals who are steam-rolling their party.
By their silence, they are allowing the new extremists, and their media allies, to dominate the Democratic Party debate and frame the issues. In doing so, they are ignoring — and alienating — the vast majority of hardworking Americans who occupy most of the country between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.
If Democrats and their eventual nominee continue down this road, they might find themselves in the position of Walter Mondale in 1984 — Reagan defeated him not only in a 525-13 electoral college landslide but also gave him the second largest popular vote defeat in history — nearly 17 million!
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters. Read more of his reports — Go Here Now.
Thursday, March 21, 2019
President Trump on Thursday signed an executive order to promote free speech on college campuses by threatening colleges with the loss of federal research funding if they do not protect those rights.
"We’re here to take historic action to defend American students and American values," Trump said, surrounded by conservative student activists at the signing ceremony. "They’ve been under siege."
"Under the guise of speech codes, safe spaces and trigger warnings, these universities have tried to restrict free thought, impose total conformity and shut down the voices of great young Americans like those here today," he said.
A senior administration official said the order directs 12 grant-making agencies to use their authority in coordination with the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to ensure institutions that receive federal research or education grants promote free speech and free inquiry. White House officials have said it will apply to more than $35 billion in grants.
Public universities seeking funding would have to certify they comply with the First Amendment, which already applies to them. Private universities, which have more flexibility in limiting speech, would need to commit to their own institutional rules.
"Even as universities have received billions and billions of dollars from taxpayers, many have become increasingly hostile to free speech and the First Amendment," Trump said.
Trump had announced that such an order was forthcoming at the Conservative Political Action Conference last month, where he said the directive would require colleges and universities to support free speech in exchange for federal research dollars.
He brought on stage Hayden Williams, a conservative activist who was attacked while working a recruitment table on campus at the University of California-Berkeley. The video quickly went viral, with conservatives citing it as further evidence of the stifling and sometimes-violent atmosphere that conservatives face on campus.
“He took a punch for all of us,” Trump said of Williams. “And we could never allow that to happen. And here is, in closing with Hayden, here’s the good news. He’s going to be a wealthy young man.”
“If they want our dollars, and we give it to them by the billions, they’ve got to allow people like Hayden and many other great young people and old people to speak,” Trump said. “Free speech. If they don’t, it will be costly. That will be signed soon.”
Conservative commentators such as Ann Coulter and Ben Shapiro have faced hostile atmospheres when trying to speak at universities -- particularly Berkeley, where Coulter was forced to pull out of speaking and Shapiro faced protests that required police in full riot gear and intense security measures.
White House officials declined to provide specific examples about how universities could lose funding said implementation details will be finalized in coming months.
Fox News’ Kellianne Jones, Robert Gearty and The Associated Press contributed to this report. Adam Shaw is a reporter covering U.S. and European politics for Fox News.. He can be reached here.
By Jason L. Riley | Wall Street Journal
Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren. PHOTO: KAREN PULFER FOCHT/REUTERS
How can centuries-old oppression be to blame for problems that became severe only recently?
Sen. Elizabeth Warren told a town-hall audience in Jackson, Miss., Monday that “it’s time to start the national, full-blown conversation” about slavery reparations for blacks. Come again?
Compensating black Americans for past oppression has been a subject of discussion for decades. The senator’s problem is that large majorities of the public have consistently opposed reparations, not that we don’t talk about it.
James Forman, a black activist, called for $500 million in reparations in 1969 and inspired a 1973 book, “The Case for Black Reparations,” by Yale law professor Boris Bittker. Civil-rights organizations rejected the idea, which the NAACP’s assistant director called “an illogical, diversionary and paltry way out for guilt-ridden whites.”
Bayard Rustin, who organized the 1963 March on Washington and was one of Martin Luther King’s closest advisers, was another vocal skeptic of blacks cashing in on the tribulations of long-gone forebears. “The idea of reparations is a ridiculous idea,” Rustin said. “If my great-grandfather picked cotton for 50 years, then he may deserve some money, but he’s dead and gone and nobody owes me anything.”
Each year for more than a quarter-century, Rep. John Conyers introduced a reparations bill in Congress.
Other books, like Randall Robinson’s “The Debt: What America Owes to Blacks,” have become best sellers.
And prominent legal scholars, such as Charles Ogletree of Harvard Law School, have filed class-action lawsuits seeking compensation for the descendants of slaves.
The civil-rights leadership and black elites today generally support reparations.
But public opinion hasn’t moved much.
In a 1997 ABC poll, 77% of respondents said the government should not pay black descendants of slaves.
In a 2002 Gallup survey, it was 81%. A 2016 Marist poll put opposition to reparations at 72%.
Even black support for reparations isn’t as high as you might imagine.
The Gallup poll from 2002 found that half of blacks opposed reparations, along with 90% of whites.
In 2015, a Kaiser Family Foundation/CNN survey found that 52% of blacks, and only 8% of whites, agreed that the government should “make cash payments to black Americans who are descendants of slaves.”
Put another way, opposition to slavery reparations among whites has been far higher than support for them among blacks.
Which might explain why even prominent Democrats have frowned on the idea.
Barack Obama opposed reparations when he ran for president in 2008, as did Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders eight years later.
By contrast, reparations supporters in the 2020 field include not only Ms. Warren but also Sen. Kamala Harris, Sen. Cory Booker and former Housing Secretary Julián Castro. Mr. Sanders has been more circumspect when pressed, but it’s clear that he’s less dismissive of the idea than he was three years ago.
It’s too early to tell whether this recent Democratic enthusiasm for reparations represents confidence, recklessness, an exceptionally crude strategy for appealing to black voters, or some combination of all three.
But it’s clear that supporters have convinced themselves that racial disparities today persist due to racial discrimination in the past.
In an interview with National Public Radio last week, Ms. Harris said that the “trauma” experienced among blacks today stems from their slave past. “It is environmental. It is centuries of slavery, which was a form of violence where women were raped, where children were taken from their parents—violence associated with slavery,” said the senator. “There was never any real intervention to break up what had been generations of people experiencing the highest forms of trauma.”
Ms. Harris wants to hold slavery responsible for black America’s contemporary problems.
But that requires ignoring the progress made by blacks—both in absolute terms and relative to whites—who lived much closer to the era of slavery.
For example, the soaring violent-crime rates that produce so much “trauma” in poor black communities today did not exist in those communities in the first 100 years after emancipation, even though poverty rates at the time were much higher and racism was still legal and widespread.
Barry Latzer, a criminologist at John Jay College, reports that black male homicides fell by nearly 18% in the 1940s and by another 21% in the 1950s, while rates remained relatively flat among their white counterparts over the same period.
Similarly, Harvard sociologist William Julius Wilson has written that “in ghetto neighborhoods throughout the first half of the twentieth century, rates of inner-city joblessness, teenage pregnancy, out-of-wedlock births, female-headed families, welfare dependency and serious crime were significantly lower than in later years and did not reach catastrophic proportions until the mid-1970s.”
Did the “legacy of slavery” and Jim Crow skip over a couple of generations and then reassert itself in the mid-1970s?
Or is it possible that something else is primarily responsible for the outcomes we see today?
Wednesday, March 20, 2019
Oh, So This Is Why The FBI Couldn't View The Clinton Foundation Emails On Hillary's Unauthorized Server
By Matt Vespa |FOX News
Source: Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
I know it’s a story that isn’t as dominating as the 2020 contenders, the college admission scandal, or the horrific shooting in New Zealand, but the Department of Justice/FBI meddling in the 2016 election is still news.
We all had suspicions that there were top-level folks screwing around. I mean, we just had revelations that top officials at the DOJ were discussing ways to remove Donald Trump through the 25th Amendment.
These people weren’t elected. This was coup talk. Period.
Now, we have ex-FBI lawyer Lisa Page saying that there was an order handed down from the DOJ to the FBI, telling them not to charge Hillary Clinton for mishandling classified information on her unauthorized and unsecured server from which she did all of her officials business when she served the Obama administration as secretary of state.
And now, there was supposedly a deal between the DOJ and the Clinton camp that prevented the FBI from viewing Clinton Foundation emails (via Washington Examiner).
Fired FBI agent Peter Strzok told Congress last year that the agency "did not have access" to Clinton Foundation emails that were on Hillary Clinton's private server because of a consent agreement "negotiated between the Department of Justice attorneys and counsel for Clinton."
That agreement was revealed in newly released congressional transcripts from Strzok's closed-door testimony at the House Judiciary Committee on June 27, 2018.
When asked by then-majority general counsel Zachary Somers if “the Clinton Foundation was on the server”, Strzok testified that he believed it was “on one of the servers, if not the others.” But Strzok stressed that due to an agreement between the DOJ and Clinton, they were not allowed to search Clinton Foundation emails for information that could help in their investigation.
The FBI would have been investigating Clinton's emails in 2016, when former President Barack Obama was still in office and when Clinton was running for president against then-candidate Donald Trump.
Somers asked in the 2018 hearing: “Were you given access to those emails as part of the investigation?”
Strzok replied: “We were not. We did not have access," according to the transcript.
The allegations lobbed at the Clinton Foundation have been pervasive as well, with many noting that it was a virtual slush fund for the power couple. A political favor bank where the wealthy and well connected to drop a donation and could expect very good things to benefit them in their economic lives at some point down the road.
And it wasn’t just liberals who were writing about how this little system was rather slimy.
In August of 2016, Guy noted that the DOJ rejected an FBI request to look into the Clinton Foundation. At the time, who cares, right? Clinton was going to win anyway.
For years, the liberal media and the Democrats have alleged that there was Russian collusion with the Trump campaign to tilt the 2016 election.
So far, there’s been zero evidence to substantiate that allegation that’s rapidly becoming a clown show. It’s embarrassed the media for peddling stories on this beat that was not just straight trash, but totally wrong.
Now, with more light on the FBI, DOJ, and Clinton campaign’s antics, the collusion call is coming from inside the house. Remember the Steele Dossier on Trump that was compiled by ex-MI6 spook Christopher Steele was a Democrat/DNC/Clinton funded the venture.
Lisa Page and Peter Strzok had a months-long extramarital affair in which they shared tens of thousands of anti-Trump texts, alluding to an insurance policy against the then-candidate, worried that the bureau might be going too hard on Hillary during the email probe, with Strzok explicitly saying that they would find ways to stop a Trump presidency. He reportedly was told that the Clinton server may have been breached and did nothing about it.
Strzok was a top counterintelligence agent at the bureau prior to the revelation of these texts. He was transferred to human resources before being fired, but not after he was involved in the Clinton email probe and signed off on the counterintelligence investigation into Russian collusion in July of 2016; an investigation now being helmed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Page resigned, but in a closed-door session with Congress said the anti-Trump texts meant what they said.
This story about the Clinton Foundation emails having a shield thanks to the Obama DOJ shouldn't shock us, but it's part of a pattern.
So, when it comes to collusion, the Robert F. Kennedy and J. Edgar Hoover buildings seem to be a point sources.
Tuesday, March 19, 2019
The Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled in favor of the Trump administration by deciding federal officials can detain immigrants at any time for possible deportation after they have served their time in the U.S. for other crimes.
The 5-4 decision reversed the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which said officials have to detain these immigrants immediately or they are exempt from ever being detained.
Justice Samuel Alito delivered the majority opinion for the court, and he was joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh.
Justices Steven Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan dissented.
At the center of the case are immigrants Mony Preap and Bassam Yusuf Khoury, who are in the U.S. as lawful permanent residents. Both were convicted of crimes and served their sentences but were not detained by immigration authorities for removal proceedings until years after they were released from criminal custody.
The dispute focused on a federal law that says the Department of Homeland Security can detain immigrants convicted of certain crimes “when the alien is released” from criminal custody.
Lawyers for Preap and Khoury, as well as other immigrants in similar circumstances, argued they are exempt from mandatory detention because of the gap in their custody, as the statute applies only if the immigrant is taken into custody immediately upon release.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed, and in a 2016 ruling, the appeals court said the word “when” in the statute “conveys immediacy,” and immigration detention has to occur promptly after the immigrant is released from criminal custody.
The Trump administration argued that the government has the authority to detain immigrants as they await deportation, even if they are arrested by immigration authorities years after serving their sentences. The Supreme Court agreed.
Reading his dissent from the bench, Breyer warned the "greater importance in the case lies in the power that the majority's interpretation grants to the government."
"It is a power to detain persons who committed a minor crime many years before. And it is a power to hold those persons, perhaps for many months, without any opportunity to obtain bail," he wrote.
IN OTHER NEWS
CNN Poll: Trump Approval Climbs to 42 Percent
By Jason Devaney | Newsmax
President Donald Trump's approval rating climbed to its highest since last August in a new CNN survey.
Trump has garnered rising approval ratings in other recent polls as well, with an NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey giving him a 46 percent approval rating earlier this month.
Key numbers in the results of the latest CNN Poll conducted by SSRS:
- 42 percent of U.S. adults approve of the job Trump is doing, up from 40 percent a month-and-a-half ago. It was as high as 42 percent in the CNN Poll in August 2018.
- 51 percent approve of Trump's handling of the economy, a 3-point jump from the beginning of February.
- Trump's approval rating on immigration fell two points and now stands at 39 percent.
- Trump's approval rating on foreign affairs remains at 40 percent.
- Regarding Trump's veto last week of a Congressional resolution to overturn his national declaration to secure money to build additional border wall, 55 percent said he should not have issued the veto and 35 percent said he was right to use his veto powers.
According to CNN, Trump's approval number of 42 percent puts him between former Presidents Bill Clinton (44 percent) in 1995 and Ronald Reagan (41 percent) in 1983 at this point in their presidencies.
US Consumer Sentiment Beats Forecasts
By Trading Economics
The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment for the US increased to 97.8 in March of 2019 from 93.8 in February, beating market expectations of 95.3, preliminary estimates showed. It is the highest reading in three months, amid rising income and lower inflation expectations and more positive growth prospects.
Consumer Confidence in the United States averaged 86.49 Index Points from 1952 until 2019, reaching an all-time high of 111.40 Index Points in January of 2000 and a record low of 51.70 Index Points in May of 1980.
Consumer expectations rose to 89.2 from 84.4 and the gauge for current economic conditions increased to 111.2 from 108.5. Inflation expectations for the year ahead edged down to 2.4 percent from 2.6 percent in February while the 5-year outlook increased to 2.5 percent from 2.3 percent.
The early March gain in sentiment was entirely due to households with incomes in the bottom two-thirds of the distribution, whose sentiment rose to 97.4 from 90.0 in February.
Sentiment fell among households with incomes in the top third to 98.5 in early March from 101.7 in February.
The difference that accounted for the divergence was how households evaluated their personal finances, as lower income households expressed much more positive assessments.
The divergence was due to a monthly jump of one-percentage point in income expectations among middle and lower incomes compared to a change of just one-tenth of a percentage point among those with incomes in the top third.
Rising income expectations were accompanied by lower expected year-ahead inflation rates, resulting in more favorable real income expectations.
Moreover, all income groups voiced more positive prospects for growth in the overall economy during the year ahead. Since households with incomes in the top third account for more than half of all consumer expenditures, cautious observers will conclude that the latest data are another indication that the end of the expansion is on the distant horizon.
While that may well be true, the current level of consumer sentiment at 97.8 hardly indicates an emerging downturn; even among households with incomes in the top third, the Sentiment Index is 98.5, and 97.4 in the bottom two-thirds.
The data indicate that real consumption will grow by 2.6% in 2019 and that the expansion will set a new record length by mid-year.