Our partnership with Mexico is deepening in ways that were unimaginable even a few years ago
From the successful negotiation of the USMCA to our cooperation to combat illegal immigration to securing our common borders, to fighting arms traffickers, U.S.-Mexico relations have never been closer, stronger, better, or more productive. These developments directly benefit the American and Mexican people by promoting our shared national security and our economic prosperity goals.
The timing couldn’t have been better, either. The deal was finalized before China’s mishandling of the COVID-19 outbreak upended the global economy, and the USMCA’s benefits will help drive our vigorous recovery.
The standoff between a gun-toting couple who stood in their front yard and protesters who marched through the private neighborhood is under investigation, according to St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly Gardner's office.
Gardner, who was elected in 2016 on a platform of reforming the criminal justice system, was reportedly backed by liberal billionaire
George Soros. The total funds donated by the super PAC were at least $190,750, according to the report, with Soros giving at least $30,000. Soros is known for backing left-wing causes across the globe, having last year used his super PAC to successfully boost two liberal prosecutor candidates in Virginia over incumbent Democrats.
Since being elected, Gardner has butted heads publicly with Missouri’s Republican attorney general Eric Schmitt and faced lawsuits for allegedly ignoring public records requests. Gardner was sued last week for at least the third time over the state’s Sunshine Law, an open records law that requires the government to respond within three days to requests for public records.
Schmitt had earlier criticized Gardner on Twitter for allowing the release of all 36 rioters and looters arrested in the city following protests over the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. "In a stunning development, our office has learned that every single one of the St. Louis looters and rioters arrested were released back onto the streets by local prosecutor Kim Gardner," Schmitt tweeted June 3.
Gardner has also been at odds with the St. Louis police and local legal establishment since taking office.
She said her office was working with the police department to investigate the confrontation, adding that authorities "will use the full power of Missouri law to hold people accountable." However, no charges were filed against the couple as of Tuesday morning.
Couple told police they were threatened by 'multiple' armed individuals when they got their guns
The St. Louis couple caught on video brandishing guns in the front yard of their home while protesters passed through their private neighborhood are being investigated by the St. Louis Police Department and the city's circuit attorney, Kimberly Garder.
"I am alarmed at the events that occurred over the weekend, where peaceful protesters were met by guns and a violent assault," Gardner said. "We must protect the right to peacefully protest, and any attempt to chill it through intimidation or threat of deadly force will not be tolerated."
However, the McCloskeys' attorney, Albert Watkins, saw the couple's clash with protesters differently. Under Missouri's Castle Doctrine, "a person has the right, has the absolute unmitigated right to protect his or her castle or family while on their property," Watkins said. "And in this particular fact situation, you have individuals who are acting on private property, trespassing as lawbreakers onto private property, damaging and destroying private property and acting in a threatening and hostile fashion, such as to give rise to what any human being would consider to be placing them in a position of abject horror and certainly in a position of feeling in fear of imminent harm. My clients didn't sit on their front stoop with guns ... No firearms were on them at the time that they, were, as property owners standing in front of their home. It was not until they basically were in a position of seeing and observing violence, recklessness, lawbreaking, and knowing that the police were not going to be doing anything."
Watkins also slammed Gardner's decision and said if she had read the McCloskeys' police report from the incident "she would have recognized the pure folly of her suggestion that she was going to evaluate the case for criminal charges. If Kimberly Gardner wants to press charges against two attorneys who are protecting their home and their family and themselves on their own property, I will tell you that it will be nothing short of the proverbial cluster f---."
Mark McCloskey, 63 said in a Tuesday morning interview that he, his wife and his home were threatened by a fringe group that accompanied protesters marching to the mayor's nearby home. "There were people wearing body armor. One person pulled out a loaded pistol magazine, he clipped them together and said, 'You’re next. We were threatened with our lives, threatened with the house [being] burned down."
Authorities in St. Louis executed a search warrant Friday evening at the home of Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the couple who made headlines last month when they took up arms to defend their home from protesters. There was no immediate indication the McCloskeys were arrested or charged with a crime. The warrant applied only to a search for the guns.
Soon after the June incident, Kimberly Gardner, circuit attorney in St. Louis, announced that her office and the St. Louis Police Department would be conducting an investigation into the McCloskeys’ display of firearms. The couple’s attorney at the time, Albert Watkins, said in a statement that the couple did not arm themselves until after they began feeling threatened. "My clients didn't sit on their front stoop with guns. ... No firearms were on them at the time that they, were, as property owners standing in front of their home. It was not until they basically were in a position of seeing and observing violence, recklessness, lawbreaking, and knowing that the police were not going to be doing anything."
"[The protesters said] that they were going to kill us. They were going to come in there. They were going to burn down the house. They were going to be living in our house after I was dead, and they were pointing to different rooms and said, 'That's going to be my bedroom and that’s going to be the living room and I’m going to be taking a shower in that room'." The couple said protesters also threatened to harm their dog, which was outside the home at the time.
Protesters had returned to their neighborhood July 3 – but the couple was alerted in advance and hired a private security company to protect their residence.
The Gov. Walz' administration conducted a preliminary damage assessment that found nearly $16 million of eligible damages related to fires. The federal funds would have been used to reimburse local governments for repairs and debris removal.
Republican Minnesota U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer on Thursday sent a letter to Trump in response to Walz’s aid request, asking for a "thorough and concurrent review" of the state’s response to the unrest so that "every governor, mayor and local official can learn from our experiences" and prevent such a situation from happening again.
Perhaps they should start by not condoning and allowing them to happen in the first place.
Ramona Javier never received a mail-in ballot for New Jersey’s vote-by-mail election. Neither did eight of her family members and immediate neighbors. But they are all listed as having voted in the recent election. "We did not receive vote-by-mail ballots and thus we did not vote," said Javier. "This is corruption. This is fraud."
New Jersey’s municipal mail-in election and mail-in primary elections were small scale experiments in what Democrats want to do nationwide this November. The disastrous outcomes should worry any American who supports the principle of one person, one vote.
The White House announced Friday that President Trump signed an Executive Grant of Clemency commuting the "unjust sentence" of Roger Stone, just days before the longtime political operative was slated to report to prison to serve more than three years for charges stemming from former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
The president had made the decision to commute Stone's sentence "in light of the egregious facts and circumstances surrounding his unfair prosecution, arrest, and trial."
The legal landscape is littered with the destruction wrought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his "hit squad" of partisan prosecutors
Illegitimately appointed under federal regulations, Mueller employed a scorched-earth strategy to bully, intimidate, and threaten people like former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos into coerced guilty pleas. Mueller’s ultimate goal was to get these people to incriminate President Trump for imaginary crimes based on invented evidence of Russian "collusion" to steal the 2016 presidential election. But they didn’t. There was nothing incriminating. But the truth was irrelevant to the special counsel.
Penn State Liberal Arts tweeted a message affirming diversity in various forms. This included an acknowledgment of conservative students and their viewpoints.
After intense backlash, the Pennsylvania State University liberal arts department deleted a tweet ensuring conservative students that their voices matter. The original tweet was a picture with the title "Dear Students: You Belong Here" followed by various affirmations of black, Muslim, Latinx, and LGBTQ+ students. It also had a message for conservatives: "Dear conservative students, your viewpoints are important."
The Black Lives Matter political organization "is a very divisive organization based on Marxist principals. This week they threatened to burn the system down, literally and figuratively if they don't get what they want. This is an organization that looks to destroy American principals."
There’s Black Lives Matter the concept and Black Lives Matter the institution. Most people who sign onto the BLM movement believe they are backing the concept, but it should be understood very clearly that the institution is reaping all the benefits.
Black Lives Matter has absolutely no concern for the well-being of black lives or equality in this country. In fact, by their own admission, their purpose isn’t to heal this country, it’s to rip it apart and remake it into a more Marxist kind of society.
From a 2015 video of an interview with co-founder Patrisse Cullors: "We actually do have an ideological frame. Myself and Alicia [Garza] in particular, we’re trained organizers. We are trained Marxists. We are super versed on ideological theories."
Black Lives Matter the institution isn’t trying to hide their Marxism either. In their "what we believe" section, they list their goals and all of them are extreme leftist stances concerned with destroying the very fabric of America in favor of the implementation of radical marxist ideals.
Marxism doesn’t have the interest of the people in mind. It often uses people or causes as an avenue to dismantle and rebuild political systems. Communism and socialism are not a solid system to replace anything with as they deteriorate and degrade everything, including the lives of the people. Socialism in all its variants – e.g., Communism, Socialism, Fascism – has claimed the lives of well over a hundred million people in its implementation in various countries.
BLM the institution doesn’t seem to want to solve the problem. They are, by their own admission, not interested in coming together with law enforcement bodies to solve the problem and will reject any attempts or events that do so.
The man whose Tuesday arrest in Wisconsin sparked a violent riot that culminated in the beating of a state lawmaker boasts a lengthy criminal record and appears to have a history of controversial social media posts.
Devonere Johnson was captured on video entering a restaurant in Madison carrying a bat, using profanities, and speaking through a bull horn after what appeared to be a dispute over racism, according to police reports cited by Madison.com. He was arrested outside of the restaurant for disorderly conduct while armed, resisting arrest and attempting to flee, and probation violation. After officers wrestled Johnson to the ground, he attempted to fight them off and tried to run before he was put in a squad car. Dane County court records show he was on probation at the time of his arrest. While Johnson has no open cases against him, he has been convicted or pleaded guilty at least three times, including for felony theft.
Protests calling for Johnson’s release soon spiraled into vandalism and violence during which vandals pulled down two statues.
Fear, ignorance, panic, mob hysteria, propaganda, agitators, and hidden-agenda groups are the environment where the Leftists gain the most ground. Marxist ideologies like Socialism, Fascism, and Communism do not work. They destroy the incentives for productivity and hence prosperity; poverty is the inevitable result. They are purely destructive, and their so-called proponents know it. Being in power and in control as despotic tyrants is the ulterior motive and ultimate goal of Leftists. Well-meaning but misguided and misled average people, mobs, dupes, stooges, and thugs are their tools.
The decision upheld and expanded a "ministerial exception" for religious institutions.
The Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision on Wednesday that civil courts cannot get involved in employment discrimination claims brought against religious organizations where the employee served a religious function.
The "Big Five" – Amazon, Apple, Alphabet-Google, Microsoft, and Facebook – combined have annual revenue of almost $900 billion – more than Saudi Arabia and Turkey, and almost as much as the Netherlands. How do they earn their billions?
Four out of five of those “Big Tech” companies have grown to trillion-dollar market capitalizations.
Trump called on the GOP to push back against left-wing ideology.
Trump rejected what he called "a new far-left fascism" and a "left-wing cultural revolution" that he said threatened American civilization.
"We are in a culture war. If the Republicans don't toughen up and get smart and get strong and protect our heritage and protect our country, I think they're going to have a very tough election."
He also pushed back against "cancel culture," wherein people have been shaming others for past social media posts they disagree with, and in some cases threatening their livelihoods by trying to use the posts to get them fired from their jobs. "This is the very definition of totalitarianism. And it is completely alien to our culture and our values, and it has absolutely no place in the United States of America."
That same message against cancel culture was recently put forth by well-known liberal writers and activists who warned that their fellow leftists were going too far. A letter published in Harper’s Magazine that was signed by notable figures including author J.K. Rowling, activist Gloria Steinem, and linguist Noam Chomsky said that liberals have exhibited "an intolerance of opposing views, a vogue for public shaming and ostracism, and the tendency to dissolve complex policy issues in a blinding moral certainty."
"Easier to talk and squeal, and complain ... than to actually help people."
"People are trying to shame people from their jobs, their disagreement with any dissent, they’re trying to cancel individuals."
"We are now in the process of defeating the radical left, the anarchists, the agitators, the looters, and the people who, in many instances, have absolutely no clue what they are doing. We will never allow an angry mob to tear down our statues, erase our history, indoctrinate our children." – President Trump
Hysteria about COVID is cool. It’s hip. It’s WOKE. In fact, it’s increasingly mandatory. How long before government-ordered “truth” is mandatory, just like masks already are mandatory, even in Republican states like Texas?
Why will few or no people fight it, or speak out against it? Are they really THAT worried about not being seen as WOKE? Will they give up their freedom so people won’t think them “on the outs”? If so, they deserve what’s coming.
In the meantime, here are a few facts to distract you from the hysteria:
In truth, Texas’ ICU capacity is currently 90% occupied, but of these beds, COVID-19 patients occupy only 15%. The remaining 85% are filled with a backlog of patients whose various non-urgent procedures had been postponed for months due to (ultimately unsubstantiated) fear that COVID would overload the health care system.
Dr. Scott Atlas of the Hoover Institute:
Atlas said that he has done more than a superficial analysis of the numbers, and after analyzing them, he…[e]xplain[ed], "When you look all over at the states who are seeing a lot of new cases, you have to look at who is getting infected because we should know by now, that the goal is not to eliminate all cases, that’s not rational, it’s not necessary, if we just protect the people who are going to have serious complications. We look at the cases, yes there's a lot more cases, by the way they do not correlate in a time sense to any kind of reopening of states. If you look at the timing, that’s just a misstatement, a false narrative. The reality is they may correlate to the new protests and massive demonstrations, but it’s safe to say the majority of new cases are among younger, healthier people."
Furthermore, Dr. Atlas emphasized the fact that the death rates are not going up, despite the increase in cases. "And that’s what really counts, are we getting people who are really sick and dying, and we’re not, and when we look at the hospitalizations, yes, hospitals are more crowded, but that’s mainly due to the re-installation of medical care for non COVID-19 patients."
Here Dr. Atlas gets down to the nitty gritty in Texas:
Dr. Atlas used Texas of an example saying, "90+% of ICU beds are occupied, but only 15% are COVID patients. 85% of the occupied beds are not COVID patients. I think we have to look at the data and be aware that it doesn’t matter if younger, healthier people get infected, I don’t know how often that has to be said, they have nearly zero risk of a problem from this. The only thing that counts are the older, more vulnerable people getting infected. And there’s no evidence that they really are." [Sources here]
Texas is the reason for the hysteria. It goes like this: "Texas is bad. They opened up before they should have. Now everybody in Texas IS GOING TO DIE. Soon everyone else will die. It's because of Texas, and other states like Texas, who dared to end 10-15 percent of the lockdown. They should have stayed 100 PERCENT LOCKED DOWN FOREVER. Everyone is going to die, and it’s all their fault! And it’s all Trump’s fault!”
The “reasoning” and hysteria are truly infantile. If infants could talk, this is how they would reason. The defiance of facts is stunning. This is only the latest.
Imagine an airplane pilot with no radar, and with air traffic controllers who deliberately lie to him about the facts on the ground. How safely do you think that pilot could land the plane?
You don’t have to imagine. We are lied to daily and repeatedly by a compliant, biased and totally dishonest media hellbent on only one thing: Destroying Trump. And, right after that, totally destroying freedom in America.
We can’t have rational conversations about COVID. Why? Because the "facts" most of us are reading aren't facts at all. Either they are lies, or they are half-truths, leaving out crucial facts that would lead you to a different conclusion than the brazenly far left-wing media wants you to have.
It’s beyond insane. Yet that’s where we are. We are in so much more trouble than any virus could ever foist upon us.
Knowledge is power. In order to have powerful knowledge, the facts and reasoning must be honest and truthful. A sincere desire to know the truth is essential. That way, you get to the truth, at least eventually.
Liars will bring us down with them, and ultimately destroy us. America had so much to lose, and — as of this moment, at least — we are losing. The war isn’t over, and there’s no rational reason ever to give up. But dishonesty is a powerful thing when people are ignorant and indifferent toward real facts. If we’re to win this war for truth, people will have to become courageous and stop worrying about what others think. Others are not your friend … the truth IS.
Fear, ignorance, panic, mob hysteria, propaganda, agitators, and hidden-agenda groups are the environment where the Leftists gain the most ground. Marxist ideologies like Socialism, Fascism, and Communism do not work. They destroy the incentives for productivity and hence prosperity; poverty is the inevitable result. They are purely destructive, and their so-called proponents know it. Being in power and in control as despotic tyrants is the ulterior motive and ultimate goal of Leftists. Well-meaning but misguided and misled average people, mobs, dupes, stooges, and thugs are their tools.
She was ordered held without bail on multiple sex abuse charges, including conspiracy to entice minors to engage in sexual acts.
"I think that a lot of the friends of Jeffrey Epstein who were very relieved after he died are probably pretty terrified at this moment, because I think that Ghislaine Maxwell has every incentive to talk in this situation. Epstein is dead ... she doesn't really have to worry about protecting him or anything else at this point. And I think that [the Department of Justice] also has more leeway to potentially kind of deal with her than it did with Epstein because ... he was accused of being the kingpin in this situation."
Police cleared the area early Wednesday, making more than a dozen arrests after Mayor Jenny Durkan declared the gathering an unlawful assembly following a string of shootings, two of which turned deadly.
Business owners' comments included: "It was a good time (for police) to come in. A few weeks too late, but a good time to come in. The mayor hasn’t looked out for anybody’s safety that we are aware of, in weeks," and "We looked for answers from mayor and city council and we got nothing."
Hawley blasted circuit attorney Kimberly Gardner – the prosecutor spearheading the probe – pointing out that she has had "dozens of violent criminals referred to her by the St. Louis police and she hasn't prosecuted any of them. She hasn't even charged any of them. She's turned them back out on the streets," he accused.
"And then you've got this couple who, by the way, are on their own property – they never left their property – just standing there with their perfectly Second Amendment right to keep their arms — standing right there. And, they're going to be investigated?" asked Hawley. "I mean, it's just insane."
The homeowners told police the protesters broke a gate to get onto the private street, adding they only retrieved their firearms when they spotted "multiple" people who were armed, department records show.
"There were people wearing body armor. One person pulled out a loaded pistol magazine, he clipped them together and said, 'You're next,'" Mark McCloskey said. "We were threatened with our lives, threatened with the house [being] burned down."
Under Missouri's Castle Doctrine, "a person has the right, has the absolute unmitigated right to protect his or her castle or family while on their property," Watkins said. "And in this particular fact situation, you have individuals who are acting on private property, trespassing as lawbreakers onto private property, damaging and destroying private property and acting in a threatening and hostile fashion, such as to give rise to what any human being would consider to be placing them in a position of abject horror and certainly in a position of feeling in fear of imminent harm."
Federal law enforcement officials on Thursday arrested Jason Charter in Washington, the “ringleader” in the recent attempt to destroy the Andrew Jackson statue in Lafayette Square near the White House.
"They were very organized," a federal law enforcement official said. "Charter was on top of the statue and directing people ... they had acid, chisels, straps and a human chain preventing police from getting to the statue."
Instead of impartial judicial review, the fate of a seized property is decided by the seizing agency itself. Worse, agencies have a direct financial incentive to forfeit property: Under federal law, they can keep up to 100% of the forfeiture proceeds.
Thought for the Day – Role Models
means standing tall for what is great when those around you will not.
A married couple brandished firearms at protesters marching through their upscale St. Louis neighborhood. The couple confronted the group of about 300 protesters after they breached a gate in the neighborhood.
Court rules the agency's structure was unconstitutional because its director held too much unchecked power.
Congress overstepped constitutional lines in 2010 when it created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and placed it under the control of a single director who was insulated from the White House's political direction. The CFPB's director was unaccountable to the executive branch, creating an unconstitutional diminishment of presidential power. The court changed the CFPB removal provision to make the director subject to presidential removal for any reason.
The Trump administration declined to defend the CFPB and agreed with legal challengers who argued its structure was unlawful, abandoning the legal position of the Obama administration.
Hong Kong police arrested at least 53 people on Sunday after scuffles erupted during a relatively peaceful protest against planned national security legislation to be implemented by the mainland Chinese government.
The proposed national security law has raised concerns among Hong Kong democracy activists and some foreign governments that Beijing is further eroding the extensive autonomy promised when Britain handed the territory back to China in 1997.
"The governments wants to shut us up and to kick us out. We must stand up and strike down all those people who deprive Hong Kong people’s freedom."
Nearly two-thirds of the money the Biden Cancer Initiative spent since its founding in 2017 went toward staff compensation and six-figure salaries for top executives. The group spent far less on efforts to eradicate cancer.
It did not cut a single grant to any other group or foundation during its two-year run.
Several Minneapolis City Council members who have received death threats following their calls to defund the police after the death of George Floyd have been assigned private security details -- reportedly costing the city $4,500 a day in taxpayer dollars.
The Minneapolis City Council unanimously approved a proposal to eliminate the city's police department Friday, initiating steps toward establishing a new "holistic" approach to public safety.
Federal prosecutors have announced the arrests of more than six dozen people on charges ranging from murder to arson to looting in connection with rioting that grew out of protests over the death of George Floyd in the past five weeks.
Wilson’s “segregationist policies,” included segregating multiple federal agencies and his Cabinet after decades of integration following Reconstruction. Wilson rationalized segregation as a “strategy to keep racial peace.” Wilson also blocked a Japanese proposal to include racial equality as a founding principle to the League of Nations.
Finally – a prominent Democrat President gets labelled for what he was; now if only the rest of the Democrat Party would likewise be treated the same for its historic, routine racism.
The Trump administration on Thursday night filed a brief in a highly charged Supreme Court case that has the potential to completely overturn the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as ObamaCare.
The case, California v. Texas, is brought by a group of red states arguing that because Congress eliminated the financial penalty associated with the individual mandate -- the provision in the ACA that requires all Americans to purchase health insurance -- it is no longer a valid exercise of the government's power to tax and therefore is unconstitutional.
A group of blue states is backing ObamaCare. That group is led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra.
The Supreme Court reading the mandate as a tax is what saved the law during a previous challenge. It will hear this case during its next term, which is set to begin in October.
District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan had "gone rogue" after essentially ignoring a DOJ motion to halt legal action against Flynn.
"Why are we getting these notes now? Where have the notes been? Where were the notes we got about a month or so ago from the Department of Justice?"
On January the 5th, 2017, in a meeting in the Oval Office with Vice President Biden and President Obama the Logan Act was mentioned. No one has ever been prosecuted under the Logan Act in the history of the country. There is no way Flynn's actions are a violation of the Logan Act for the incoming national security adviser to be talking to the Russian ambassador about changing policy. That could never be a violation of the Logan Act."
New York Gov. coronavirus orders unfairly targeted houses of worship.
A federal judge said New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Attorney General Letitia James, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio "exceeded" their executive limits by limiting worship services and condoning mass protests as the state continues to reopen from coronavirus restrictions.
"By acting as they did, Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio sent a clear message that mass protests are deserving of preferential treatment."
Special Counsel Christopher Ferrara called Cuomo's executive orders a "sham" that "went right out the window as soon as he and Mayor de Blasio saw a mass protest movement they favored taking to the streets by the thousands. Suddenly, the limit on 'mass gatherings' was no longer necessary to 'save lives.'"
"This decision is an important step toward inhibiting the suddenly emerging trend of exercising absolute monarchy on [the] pretext of public health. What this kind of regime really meant in practice is freedom for me, but not for thee."
Among many violations cited in the lawsuit, de Blasio ignored social distancing and the 10-person limit when he didn't wear a face mask on June 4 while attending and addressing a mass political gathering at New York City's Cadman Plaza.
Numerous Seattle businesses sued the city Wednesday, alleging city officials were complicit in allowing an "occupied protest" that has made them feel unsafe in their neighborhood.
Since the occupation began June 8, the area has seen shootings, vandalism and other crimes. The plaintiffs allege that city leaders provided the demonstrators with barriers, public restrooms and medical supplies – in effect supporting the occupation of the neighborhood and hindering the efforts of local businesspeople, employees and residents to reach their buildings, receive deliveries and provide services.
"The result of the City’s actions has been lawlessness."
Newly uncovered notes penned by former FBI agent Peter Strzok were obtained this week as part of the Justice Department’s ongoing review of the case against former national security adviser Michael Flynn and turned over to his legal team for review.
The page of notes was taken by former Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok,” they continued. “While the page itself is undated; we believe that the notes were taken in early January 2017, possibly between January 3 and January 5.
"The few notes produced today do further exonerate General Flynn."
Then-FBI Director James Comey appeared to downplay Flynn’s calls during the presidential transition with Russia's ambassador as "legit" during a meeting with then-President Barack Obama and then-Vice President Joe Biden.
Flynn attorney Sidney Powell filed the notes and claimed they produced "further stunning and exculpatory evidence" that was previously withheld from Flynn. Powell wrote that the notes show that "Director Comey himself and the highest levels of the Obama Administration had the transcripts of Flynn’s phone calls with officials of other countries and knew General Flynn’s calls were lawful and proper."
"Strzok's notes believed to be of January 4, 2017, reveal that former President Obama, James Comey, Sally Yates, Joe Biden, and apparently Susan Rice discussed the transcripts of Flynn's calls and how to proceed against him. Mr. Obama himself directed that 'the right people' investigate General Flynn."
The notes state: "VP: 'Logan Act,' P: These are unusual times. VP: I've been on intel committee for ten years and I never. P: Make sure you look over things and have the right people on it. P: Is there anything I shouldn’t be telling the transition team? D: Flynn -> Kislyak calls but appear legit."
"This caused former FBI Director Comey to acknowledge the obvious: General Flynn’s phone calls with Ambassador Kislyak 'appear legit.'" Powell also wrote that according to the notes "it appears that Vice President Biden personally raised the idea of the Logan Act. That became an admitted pretext to investigate General Flynn."
"No vacancy left behind." That quote, repeated over and over by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in the past year -- to cheers from Republicans and the outrage of Democrats -- has been the creed behind the Senate's single-minded push to confirm as many Trump-nominated federal judges as possible. And the 52-48 confirmation of Cory Wilson to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on Wednesday means that McConnell, in one respect, has quite literally accomplished that goal. Wilson fills the final remaining federal circuit court vacancy. That pace is faster than every other president in history except for Jimmy Carter.
President Trump's appointees now make up more than one-quarter of the federal judiciary -- a legacy that will long outlast him and McConnell.
"It's a victory for the rule of law and for the constitution itself. If judges applying the law and the constitution as they're written strikes any of our colleagues as a threat to their political agenda, then the problem, I would argue, is with their agenda."
Challenges the notion that black Americans support toppling Confederate and other statues across the nation.
"They really have no agenda other than the idea we're going to topple a statue."
Johnson rejected the backlash against public figures who say "all lives matter" instead of "black lives matter," and the cancel craze targeting TV shows like "Dukes of Hazzard" and movie classics such as "Gone with the Wind." He also mocked white celebrities for what he described as apologizing for their race in emotional social media speeches.
This was the result of an appeal from Flynn's lawyers asking for a so-called writ of mandamus -- essentially an order telling a government official to carry out a certain duty -- directing District Judge Emmet Sullivan to approve the DOJ's motion to dismiss.
Major cities in the U.S. reported bloody weekends amid increased calls to defund and disband police departments.
Chicago recorded at least 11 killed and 67 wounded. Eight of those shot were children and teens. Four of them died.
A deadly shooting at the Capitol Hill Organized Protest zone in Seattle that resulted in the death of a 19-year-old male. Police are investigating a second shooting late Sunday night in the protest zone.
Minneapolis recorded one death and 11 injured in the uptown section of the city early Sunday morning.
In New York Post there was one shooting in the city per hour on Saturday. Those arrested for gun possession have been allowed to skip jail during the coronavirus pandemic. The paper reported that 24 people were shot citywide on Saturday alone.
Local governments and police departments in California have said in recent days that they will not enforce a mandate from Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom that people in the state wear face masks in most public places, including outdoor areas where social distancing is not possible.
Reinette Senum, the mayor of tiny Nevada City, tore into Newsom saying that "Our Governor does NOT have the unilateral power to make such orders."
Just who is funding, or should we say 'controlling', key aspects of expressed U.S. conservatism?
President Trump, in a tenuous alignment with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, has previously said the list of judicial nominees presented, considered, nominated and confirmed, were assembled and vetted by two specific groups: The Federalist Society and the Heritage Foundation; both of whom claim to hold conservative outlooks. As a result, it’s a little more than concerning to discover that both organizations are being funded by the ultra-left wing Google ideology.
"Most media companies are dependent on Google, who will control 70 percent of all online advertising. So if you're in the news business, you obey Google. When Google tells you to do something, you do it. You have no choice."
"They can bankrupt you in a minute and they will. In all of human history, no single entity is ever had more control over information than Google does right now. So if you're worried about the concentration of power in the hands of a few unaccountable actors, and you very much should be, nobody has more unchecked power than Google does."
"It's been clear for a very long time that the Big Tech monopolies have now surpassed the federal government as the chief threat to our liberties. Google is acting directly to shape what people can say and what they're allowed to speak. It's a direct effort to stifle free speech."
The European Commission is in advanced talks with pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson to reserve or buy up-front doses of its COVID-19 vaccine under development.
Johnson & Johnson plans next month to start human clinical trials for its experimental vaccine against the highly contagious coronavirus, which has infected more than 8.36 million people worldwide, with 447,985 deaths.
"Where are the people who will defend this? The Republican Party and conservatives have been largely silent."
"Make your own movie, write your own novel, do your own play about the antebellum South but don't demand that things be abolished simply because they weren't made with the peculiar narcissistic sensibilities of 2020 in mind."
The image of MSNBC’s Ali Velshi telling viewers that the Minneapolis riots were "not generally speaking unruly" as an out-of-control fire raged in the background was just one example of the left’s unwillingness to acknowledge the violence that has swept the U.S. since the death of George Floyd. They’ve covered for the rioters, cheered on the looters, and along the way seem to have forgotten all about social distancing.
Beginning on Friday, June 5th, a series of controversies rocked the media. By my count, at least eight news organizations dealt with internal uprisings (it was likely more). Most involved groups of reporters and staffers demanding the firing or reprimand of colleagues who’d made politically “problematic” editorial or social media decisions.
The mainstream media’s reporting has been blatantly unfair for decades, maybe even forever, but more recently, it has crossed the rubicon and has now reached Alice in Wonderland territory. Reporters no longer even try to hide their bias and in some cases, report outright lies.
The Obama administration secretly sought to give Iran access — albeit briefly — to the U.S. financial system by sidestepping sanctions kept in place after the 2015 nuclear deal, despite repeatedly telling Congress and the public it had no plans to do so.
Under Obama, the Treasury Department issued a license in February 2016, never previously disclosed, that would have allowed Iran to convert $5.7 billion it held at a bank in Oman from Omani rials into euros by exchanging them first into U.S. dollars.
The banks refused to deal with Iran despite Obama asking them to.
Notes and emails that have been kept so far from Senate investigators show the FBI knew from its earliest interactions with Christopher Steele in July 2016 that his Russia research project on Donald Trump was connected to Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party.
"So far the bureau is slow-walking this stuff."
It wasn’t until late October 2017 that the public and Congress first learned that the law firm Perkins Coie, on behalf of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign, hired Glenn Simpson’s Fusion GPS research firm to have Steele delve into Trump’s Russia connections.
(also from other sources, including here and here)
She wins over Gorsuch and Roberts to rewrite the Civil Rights Act.
Congratulations to Chief Justice Elena Kagan on her big win Monday at the Supreme Court on gay and transgender rights in Bostock v. Clayton County. Ok, she isn’t the Chief, but she might as well be as her redefining of Antonin Scalia’s jurisprudence prevailed in a startling 6-3 ruling that included Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Neil Gorsuch.
Justice Kagan didn’t write the majority opinion, but her views are all over Justice Gorsuch's opinion that essentially rewrites Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. That law bars discrimination in employment on the basis of “race, color, religion, sex, [and] national origin.” But in oral argument, Justice Kagan redefined “sex” in Title VII to mean more than the binary choice of a man or woman. Justice Gorsuch bought the argument, and in the process he usurps Congress and distorts the textualist school of jurisprudence that he claims to follow.
There is no evidence that Congress or the public in 1964 understood gender identity and sexual orientation to be the same as biological sex. Mores have changed for the better, and Congress would have added gender and sexual orientation to the law sooner rather than later. But all 10 appellate courts that considered whether “sex” covered gender identity and sexual orientation before 2017 held that it did not.
The Court has now rewritten the law itself. While Justice Gorsuch concedes that “homosexuality and transgender status are distinct concepts from sex,” he says “discrimination based on homosexuality or transgender status necessarily entails discrimination based on sex; the first cannot happen without the second.”
But animus toward gays or transgender people isn’t based on their biological sex. People hostile to gays aren’t necessarily sexual chauvinists. Justice Gorsuch cites the High Court’s Phillips (1971) ruling that held Title VII protects a woman not hired because she was a mother. But motherhood is inextricably linked to biological sex. Gender and sexual orientation are not.
“When Congress chooses not to include any exceptions to a broad rule, courts apply the broad rule,” Justice Gorsuch writes. But the majority here isn’t merely applying an overly broad or vague law, which Justice Gorsuch has criticized the Court for doing in other cases. The Court is redefining the original meaning of “sex” in the law.
As Justice Samuel Alito explains in a comprehensive dissent joined by Justice Clarence Thomas, “The Court tries to convince readers that it is merely enforcing the terms of the statute, but that is preposterous. Even as understood today, the concept of discrimination because of ‘sex’ is different from discrimination because of ‘sexual orientation’ or ‘gender identity.’ And in any event, our duty is to interpret statutory terms to ‘mean what they conveyed to reasonable people at the time they were written,’” as Justice Scalia wrote.
Justice Alito adds: “The Court’s opinion is like a pirate ship. It sails under a textualist flag, but what it actually represents is a theory of statutory interpretation that Justice Scalia excoriated––the theory that courts should ‘update’ old statutes so that they better reflect the current values of society.”
Justice Brett Kavanaugh rebukes the majority in a separate dissent for short-circuiting negotiations in Congress and denying the LGBTQ community a democratic victory: “When this Court usurps the role of Congress, as it does today, the public understandably becomes confused about who the policymakers really are in our system of separated powers, and inevitably becomes cynical about the oft-repeated aspiration that judges base their decisions on law rather than on personal preference.”
All of this matters beyond this ruling because Justice Gorsuch sees himself as an evangelist for textualism and originalism. But he commits the cardinal sin of being a literalist in his interpretation of sex instead of looking at the original public meaning of the law Congress wrote. (“The good textualist is not a literalist,” Justice Scalia once wrote.)
If Justice Gorsuch can use textualism to rewrite a statute to comport with changing public mores, then it is meaningless. Textualism becomes merely one more tool of those who believe in a “living Constitution” that means whatever any Justice says it means. Justice Gorsuch has defined his own jurisprudence down.
This judicial law-writing may also have damaging practical consequences. More than 100 federal laws prohibit sex discrimination, and plaintiffs will now use them as a cudgel to let transgender females compete in women’s sports, provide gender neutral restrooms, and force religious institutions to bow to their cultural wishes. Congress could have protected gay rights while working out these accommodations in legislation.
Bostock is merely the latest evidence that the Roberts Court, even buttressed by two Trump nominees, is in no consistent way “conservative.” On major cases Justice Kagan swings the biggest constitutional bat.
Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanagh on Monday admonished their fellow justices for letting Second Amendment cases languish in the lower courts in a dissent to the tribunal's decision not to take up a gun rights case.
The Supreme Court handed a big win to the LGBT community Monday, ruling in a 6-3 decision that an employer who fires a worker for being gay or transgender violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act -- which already protected people from employer sex discrimination, as well as discrimination based on race, color, religion or national origin.
It stretches for several blocks in the densely packed Capitol Hill neighborhood just east of downtown Seattle and sprung up after police removed barricades near a police station Monday and largely left the building.
While safe-haven buying propelled the U.S. dollar index to a nearly 17-year high of 102.82 on March 20 -- amid fears the COVID-19 pandemic would bring the global economy to its knees -- the index had pulled back to 97.09 at Friday's close as panic safe-haven buying dissipated.
Our leaders used a health emergency to subvert democracy.
The coronavirus lockdowns continue in many places. You may not know that because it gets no publicity, but it's true. And if you're living under it, you definitely know. As a result of this, tens of millions of people are now unemployed. A huge number of them have no prospects of working again. Many thousands of small businesses are closed and will never reopen. More Americans have become dependent on drugs and alcohol, seeing their marriages dissolve, and become clinically depressed.
The cost of shutting down the United States and denying our citizens desperately needed contact with one another is hard to calculate. But the cost has been staggering.
The people responsible for doing all of this,say they have no regrets about it. We faced a global calamity, they say. COVID-19 was the worst pandemic since the Spanish flu. That flu killed 50 million people. We had no choice. We did the right thing.
They rule because we let them. The short answer is this: Yes, they were definitely lying.
As a matter of public health, we can say conclusively the lockdowns were not necessary. In fact, we can prove that. And here's the most powerful evidence: States that never locked down at all -- states where people were allowed to live like Americans and not cower indoors alone -- in the end turned out no worse than states that had mandatory quarantines.
The states that locked down at first but were quick to reopen have not seen explosions of coronavirus cases. All of this is the opposite of what they said would happen with great confidence.
The media predicted mass death at places where the middle class dares to vacation. But those deaths never happened.
The Wuhan coronavirus turned out to be a dangerous disease, but a manageable disease, like so many others. Far more dangerous were the lockdowns themselves. For example, in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Massachusetts, panicked and incompetent governors forced nursing homes to accept infected coronavirus patients, and as a result, many thousands died, and they died needlessly.
The media would rather tell you now why you need to hate your neighbor for the color of his skin. The media definitely don't want to revisit what they were saying just a few weeks ago, when they were acting as press agents for power-drunk Democratic politicians. News anchors were ordering you to stop asking questions and obey.
Meanwhile, in King County, Wash., Antifa can do whatever Antifa wants to do. They have taken over an entire six-block section of downtown Seattle, and that's fine with health authorities. There is no social distancing required.
We were all played. Corrupt politicians scared us into giving up control over the most basic questions in our lives. At the same time, they gave more power to their obedient followers, like Antifa, while keeping the rest of us trapped at home and censored online.
Neocons like Colin Powell, former President Bush, and Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) have announced they would not vote for Trump, seemingly under the belief that they can actually sway conservatives, who have given Trump a 96% approval rating, an all-time high.
Neocon political ideology is anti-freedom, pro-big-government; i.e., not all that different from Democrats' Socialism.
The planned test is part of a project to develop an artificial intelligence-driven drone that could change the face of air combat.
The Air Force is hoping to pit an autonomous drone equipped with an artificial intelligence-driven flight control system against a fighter jet with a human pilot in a little over a year.
The general concept of a fully-autonomous unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) capable of air-to-air combat, as well as air-to-ground strikes, hold great potential to fundamentally change the character of aerial warfare.
It’s time for the Shadow Party's Godfather to face justice.
The deportation of a Nazi death camp guard from his residence in Queens, New York, in 2018 by ICE was described as the removal of the "last known Nazi collaborator from the United States." That’s not quite true.
There’s another Nazi collaborator living on Fifth Avenue. He’s a billionaire and untouchable because his dubious fortune has been used to finance the Democrat Party, radical leftists, assorted anti-Semites, and opponents of ICE, the agency that should step in to remove the aged Hungarian from the United States.
The most important estimate came on May 20, when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported its best estimate was that the virus would kill 0.26 percent of people it infected, or about 1 in 400 people. The virus would kill 0.4 percent of those who developed symptoms. But about one out of three people would have no symptoms at all, the CDC said.
The veteran volunteer "angel" underscored that the recently passed bail reform in New York – which came in play at the beginning of 2020 and essentially means that those apprehended don't need to post bail – is contributing to the ongoing turmoil that has clenched the city for multiple consecutive nights. "It has almost become a badge of courage for (the looters). They get out in a few hours, and get to tell their friends they got written up. It's like earning their stripes."
"It's a pretty devastating day in North Carolina," Lt. Gov. Dan Forest said, "but especially for the city of Charlotte [...] with $160 million pouring in, and now that's going away because of ... a negative action by the governor."
President Trump said the RNC would pick a new state on Tuesday night.
Not hosting the event compounds the pain of the hospitality industry after the coronavirus shutdown and then damage from looters, said Forest, who's running against Cooper in the 2020 election.
"Make no mistake. We have been very clear. Peaceful protesting surrounding this horrific death of George Floyd is warranted and substantial and the right thing to do. Sadly now, the life and death of George Floyd is getting overshadowed by criminals, anarchists, those looting and burning groups like Antifa who are wreaking havoc on the streets of our cities."
"What we are all witnessing as a country is a fundamental failure of liberal governments, liberal governors, liberal mayors all across the country. Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland and other major cities now ravaged by chaos. They have been run by Democrats for decades."
"They know about Antifa. They know about these anarchists. They know the risks they pose. They have let this build and build and build and do nothing to stop the violence. Maybe on night one they could have said they weren't prepared. What's your excuse for nights two, three, four, five? They knew that cities were vulnerable to looting and violence during times of unrest. Yet, they are totally unprepared for anything as always. The damage, the carnage, the wreckage will go on for years as a result of this. This chaos needs to end now."
The Democratic politicians' handling of the violence is "a total complete dereliction of duty. There was no plan, a spectacular failure on every level."
The owner saw a group of looters on his surveillance video breaking a padlock on his gate using bolt cutters. The owner confronted the thieves, and one pointed a gun at him. The owner fatally shot the gun-wielding robber using an AR-15. A second robber was also likely shot in the shoulder. The group then fled the scene.
"The protesters outside the White House Monday, who were cleared by police prior to President Trump’s brief visit to St. John’s Episcopal Church, were “professional agitators” and the media fell for their “calculated” tactics."
"They knew the street needed to be cleared before 7 pm curfew. But they deliberately stayed to trigger police action & get the story they wanted, that 'police attacked peaceful protesters.'"
On Saturday, Barr released a statement about the riots across several prominent U.S. cities, including Atlanta, Dallas, Portland, Seattle, and New York City. The attorney general said that the riots were being "hijacked by violent radical elements."
"Groups of outside radicals and agitators are exploiting the situation to pursue their own separate and violent agenda," Barr said.
This comes as Trump has blamed Antifa for riots taking place across the country in response to the death of George Floyd, the unarmed black man who died May 25 while in police custody in Minneapolis, Minn., after an officer kneeled on his neck for more than 8 minutes in an incident caught on video.
Fraudulent votes for party members comprised as much as 22% of total cast
Democrats continue to insist that vote fraud is a Republican conspiracy theory, but it was a former Democratic judge of elections in Philadelphia who pleaded guilty Thursday to accepting $2,500 in bribes to inflate the vote totals for three Democratic candidates.
In an interview with ABC News, former FBI Director James Comey admitted he never told President Trump that the infamous Steele Dossier — which was full of unverified and salacious claims — was paid for in part by Hillary Clinton.
Riots are "glorifying violence". Bringing peace is not violence.
"...These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won't let that happen.  Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way..  Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts.  Thank you!," Mr. Trump's tweet said.
America’s economy has consistently taken a hit ever since the coronavirus pandemic began and Democrats around the country have made it clear that they do not want to see President Donald Trump revive it.
Former top Obama administration economist Jason Furman stated, "We are about to see the best economic data we’ve seen in the history of this country." An informal adviser to Joe Biden said his campaign is "very much aware" that a roaring economy could soon be on its way before the November presidential election.
"Even today when we are at over 20 million unemployed Trump gets high marks on the economy, so I can’t imagine what it looks like when things go in the other direction," said another former Obama White House official.
Our system of representative government, separated powers and guaranteed liberties, only the legislative branch can craft laws and assign punishments for noncompliance. This is Constitutional Law 101.
The lockdown orders are all unlawful because none of them – none – has been enacted by a legislature, and all of them – all – interfere with fundamental liberties, each of which is guaranteed – guaranteed – by the Constitution.
The government in America – state or federal – has no power and no right to determine what goods, services and venues are essential.
The ferocity of police enforcement and the lameness of police compliance is surprising. The police have taken the same oaths to uphold the same Bill of Rights – it’s not the Bill of Safety; it’s the Bill of Rights – as have all other officeholders. The police also know that it is unlawful for them to obey an unlawful order, particularly when they use force.
Thousands of protesters shouted pro-democracy slogans and insults at police in Hong Kong on Wednesday as lawmakers debated a bill criminalizing abuse of the Chinese national anthem in the semi-autonomous city. Nearly 300 people were arrested across Hong Kong for unauthorized assembly.
"If the government wants to be respected, then let this government first respect the rights and freedoms of its people."
Anti-China sentiment has risen as residents of Hong Kong see Beijing moving to erode those rights.
One year after last summer's chaotic and frequently violent anti-government protests, the Chinese government has announced that it plans to pass a controversial national security law to outlaw secession, subversion, terrorism and foreign interference in Hong Kong. The National People’s Congress is expected to ratify the bill Thursday. Legislation could be finalized this summer
"This is a very complex situation. Our hearts go out to the individual civilians in Hong Kong. We're with them, but the president will have to decide what exactly is the appropriate response to it."
Faced with an imminent legal challenge from a local retail art gallery,
Cordair Art Studio,
Napa County officials said late yesterday that retail art galleries may open for business as part of California’s Stage 2 reopening plan.
Hong Kong residents protest new Chinese security bill
"It looks like with this national security law, they're going to basically take over Hong Kong. If they do, under the 1992 Hong Kong Policy Act and the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019, Secretary Pompeo would likely be unable to certify that Hong Kong maintains a high degree of autonomy. And if that happens, there will be sanctions that will be imposed on Hong Kong and China."
The legislation, which could be introduced as a motion to China’s parliament, could be a turning point for its freest and most international city, potentially triggering a revision of its special status in Washington and likely to spark more unrest.
The administration said Russia had repeatedly violated the pact's terms. The pullout would formally take place in six months, but President Donald Trump held out the possibility that Russia could come into compliance.
"I think we have a very good relationship with Russia. But Russia didn't adhere to the treaty. So until they adhere, we will pull out," President Trump said.
Judicial Watch announced today that it received the "electronic communication" (EC) that officially launched the counterintelligence investigation, termed "Crossfire Hurricane," of President Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. The document, which was written by former FBI official Peter Strzok and was obtained as the result of a Judicial Watch FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) lawsuit against the FBI and DOJ for: "The Electronic Communication that initiated the counterintelligence investigation of President Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign." (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:19-cv-02743)).
"No wonder the DOJ and FBI resisted the public release of this infamous 'electronic communication' that 'opened' Crossfire Hurricane – it shows there was no serious basis for the Obama administration to launch an unprecedented spy operation on the Trump campaign. We now have more proof that Crossfire Hurricane was a scam, based on absurd gossip and innuendo. This document is Exhibit A to Obamagate, the worst corruption scandal in American history."
President Trump announced an executive order Tuesday that aims to make hundreds of deregulations in the age of coronavirus permanent, something that would amount to a massive overhaul of regulatory policy.
"If a bureaucratic rule needs to be suspended during a time of crisis to help the American people, we should ask ourselves if it makes sense to keep at all."
"Typically when our country has faced a crisis, Washington responds by grabbing more power. President Trump understands that to get the economy moving, the power needs to be given back to the people and entrepreneur."
The Trump administration has used the pandemic to spur a deregulation campaign, notably removing regulations to telemedicine and removing barriers to accelerate coronavirus vaccine or cure development. At the same time, Trump has also rolled back clean air and water restrictions and vehicle emissions standards enacted by the Obama administration.
Regarding a newly declassified email written on Jan. 20, 2017 by former National Security Adviser Susan Rice regarding the investigation into Michael Flynn, "The first thought when I read that declassified e-mail was, 'Why in the world was that ever classified?' We didn't witness what America's become so famous for, a peaceful, cooperative well-wishing transition of power. Instead, we saw a corruption of that transition. A transition really designed to sabotage and really upend the new administration.
According to the email, then-FBI Director James Comey suggested to President Barack Obama in a Jan. 5, 2017 meeting that the National Security Council (NSC) might not want to pass "sensitive information related to Russia" to Flynn, then Rice's designated successor.
"You would expect the incoming administration to be making a lot of phone calls, preparing for an enormous task. What you don't expect is a previous administration spying on them. You don't expect the previous administration sabotaging the incoming administration."
Legal challenges to governors' coronavirus shutdown orders are piling up nationwide.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' "safer at home" order.
The Oregon Supreme Court temporarily blocked a lower court order that would have invalidated all of the state's coronavirus restrictions.
The U.S. Supreme Court has turned back an application asking it to overturn Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf's statewide stay-at-home order.
A case is pending before a lower court in Illinois that has the potential to invalidate that state's coronavirus restrictions implemented by Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker. A judge who ruled against Pritzker's order as it applied to just one state lawmaker will hear arguments Friday in a case that attempts to undo the order in its entirety.
California is facing at least a dozen lawsuits that include claims that the state has unjustly closed down gun shops and religious services.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is up against a lawsuit from Republicans in her state's House and Senate over her extension of an already-strict emergency order that has regulated residents' movement and closed businesses.
Kentucky protesters sued officials including Gov. Andy Beshear, also a Democrat, for allegedly violating the First Amendment by banning mass protests.
A group of Ohio gyms sued Republican Gov. Mike DeWine over his reopening order excluding them from those businesses allowed to operate, but it was subsequently announced that they will be allowed to reopen after all.
The widespread spate of suits shows that with governors taking the lead on the coronavirus crisis, those who disapprove of the nature of the coronavirus lockdowns see the judiciary as their only option for relief from the orders.
With almost 52,000 infected and nearly 5,000 dead in Michigan, the state is in the midst of a rebellion as a growing number of people are defying and protesting the governor’s stay-at-home order. People refusing to cover their faces in stores, ignoring the governor’s order to wear masks in public places. In perhaps the most extreme form of protest that made international headlines, masked gunmen toting assault rifles made their way inside the state Capitol to rail against state orders — images that played out on television and computer screens nationwide, making Michigan the new face of defiance in America. No matter their differences the gunmen and their more moderate counterparts share a common message: Stop telling us how to live our lives, and open up the economy. Many across the state argue that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's executive order has reached a breaking point, and that it’s time to let people get back to their normal lives and back to work. "This is flat-out tyranny, They’re robbing our freedom right from under our eyes."
A Kentucky pastor, joined by at least 50 other churches, is urging religious leaders across the nation to "step up and roar" for the right to worship amid coronavirus shutdowns.
"I believe that every day a church is closed, a bit of liberty dies. We need people to stand up and roar. There is a time to be quiet, a time to be the lamb, but today is the day to be the lion."
"We're looking across the road at fast-food places handing out french fries. Liquor stores are serving patrons -- but the church is the bad guy. It is time for us to stand up for our First Amendment rights. We have religious freedom in this nation. We'll not lay that down on our watch. We have a right to peaceably assemble"
"I declassified the enclosed document, which I am providing to you for your situational awareness," Grenell wrote to the GOP senators in sending along the list.
A Justice Department official stateed that the DOJ has been reviewing the unmasking of U.S. officials as part of its broader examination of the origins of the Trump-Russia investigation and was taking a look at the files that Grenell declassified and delivered to the Justice Department last week.
It’s amazing that, to this day, neither of Gen. Michael Flynn’s legal teams have been able to obtain the FBI’s 302 from the January 24, 2017 White House ambush interview. Prosecutors claim this document has vanished.
Senator Nunes told Bartiromo the original report has vanished. "It’s gone. Poof. It’s out of sight — we can’t find it." 302s are meant to be completed as soon as possible after an interview. An FBI agent is allowed a maximum of five days to prepare the report. Yet, 17 days after the interview, FBI agent Peter Strzok and girlfriend, FBI lawyer Lisa Page are captured texting back and forth about edits they’re making to the original report.
Obviously, because Flynn has been persecuted over the FBI’s edited version of that interview for over three years now, it is critical the defense be granted a look at the original document.
While Beltway blowhards rail against foreign interference in our elections, Beijing's hijacking of our classrooms ensues with hardly a peep of political resistance.
Last week, the University of Missouri at Columbia announced it was terminating its partnership with a Chinese government-funded language and cultural program called the Confucius Institute amid widespread national security concerns. The Institute's teachers were pouring into local K-12 schools through the J-1 visa program unsupervised. The U.S. Government Accountability Office identified more than 500 "Confucius Institutes" worldwide, with 96 located at colleges and universities in the United States as of December 2018 -- the vast majority of them publicly funded institutions. A PRC propaganda outfit called Hanban has provided funding ranging from $900,000 to $1.7 million for "model" Confucius Institutes.
Stay-at-home orders aimed at reducing the spread of coronavirus are now facing legal challenges from residents and state officials alike, alleging that some measures – mostly put in place by Democrats -- go too far while the country gradually moves toward reopening. California alone is facing at least a dozen lawsuits that include claims that the state has unjustly closed down gun shops and religious services, infringed on freedoms of speech and assembly by restricting protests, and one case where a resident alleges that being forced to remain at home constitutes forced detention without due process..
In addition to California, lawsuits are faced by Wisconsin, Michigan, Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, and several cities in Texas.
Global leaders have joined the United States’ call for the World Health Assembly [WHA] on the coronavirus to include Taiwan. In a letter to the World Health Organization sent last week, the U.S. made a bipartisan appeal to allies for support in confronting the World Health Organization over its exclusion of the island nation. Taiwan has conducted perhaps the most effective containment of the pandemic, some analysts have said, making its exclusion particularly controversial. "Diseases know no borders," the letter read. "We urge your government to join us in addressing the pressing issue of Taiwan’s inclusion in the global health and safety organization."
China strongly opposed Taiwan’s attendance; it’s viewed Taiwan as a breakaway province failing to cohere with its "one-China" policy. Taiwan attended the WHA as an observer from 2009-2016 as "Chinese Taipei," but China blocked further participation after the election of Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, whom China has viewed as a separatist.
The protests, which have stretched into their 17th week, reached a new level of chaos on Tuesday, when an officer shot a demonstrator in the chest at close range, leaving him in critical condition. It was the first shooting to occur during the protests.
It marks the 17th straight week of pro-democracy protests, which began earlier this summer over a now-shelved bill that would have allowed the extradition of suspected criminals from Hong Kong to mainland China, where the courts are controlled by the Communist Party. They’ve since morphed to reflect broader calls for reform.
"It has recently come to my attention that the Chinese government has threatened to interfere with the work of American journalists in Hong Kong. These journalists are members of a free press, not propaganda cadres, and their valuable reporting informs Chinese citizens and the world," Pompeo said.
He noted that this report could affect the U.S. evaluation of Hong Kong's status. His statement added: “Any decision impinging on Hong Kong’s autonomy and freedoms as guaranteed under the Sino-British Joint Declaration and the Basic Law would inevitably impact our assessment of One Country, Two Systems and the status of the territory.”
China announced that it would be kicking out correspondents from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Voice of America, and Time magazine. Beijing justified its actions as retaliation over new rules the Trump administration placed on Chinese reporters, including a 100 reporter cap from five state-run media outlets. The outlets had 160 reporters in total, meaning 60 would be sent back to China.
Democratic Arizona Senate candidate Mark Kelly has avoided questions concerning investments made by a Chinese technology conglomerate to a space exploration company he co-founded. In 2014, the company received an unknown investment amount from the Chinese multinational giant, Tencent Holdings Ltd — the company responsible for temporarily suspending NBA streaming in China last year over a league manager expressing support for protesters in Hong Kong. Again, in 2016, World View received additional funding from Tencent during a $15 million investment round.
Kelly, until he started running for Senate in Arizona, was an adviser for World View and still has investments in the company ranging from $100,000 to $250,000, according to a financial disclosure record filed in July of 2019.
Back in March, Republican Sens. Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley both introduced legislation that would ban U.S. government employees from using telecommunications services provided by Chinese companies including Tencent. "Companies like Tencent and Huawei are espionage operations for the Chinese Communist party, masquerading as telecom companies for the 21st century," Cruz said. "Prohibiting the use of these platforms and stopping taxpayer dollars from being used to capitalize Chinese espionage infrastructure are common sense measures to protect American national security."
Help elect Kelly's GOP opponent, Martha McSally - a candidate worth voting for, and helping to win.
President Donald Trump fired State Department inspector general Steve Linick on Friday night, causing a massive reaction from those on the political Left. Two sources familiar with Linick’s ouster told the DCNF that while they were not certain of the precise reason that the watchdog was fired, he was under investigation last year by the Department of Defense’s inspector general for mishandling sensitive material.
Linick attempted to play a role in the impeachment of President Donald Trump last year by approaching Congress with information that he appeared to think was relevant — it was not. Even Democrats, who were chomping at the bit to impeach and remove the president, said that Linick was unhelpful.&NBsp; "Good riddance. This guy was the Peter Strzok of the State Department."
President Donald Trump retweeted Michelle Malkin’s tweet this morning on the far left censorship at Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google. President Trump added that his administration is working to remedy "this illegal situation." Twitter then removed the video after the US President retweeted her! The tech giants have absolutely NO FEAR in their open discrimination against conservative users!
Former Army Staff Sgt. Ronald Shurer II, who received the Medal of Honor in 2018 for braving heavy gunfire to save lives in Afghanistan, has died of cancer. He was 41.
"He was an amazing man. Obviously, he is known for being an amazing soldier. The same characteristics that made him a great teammate in Special Forces also made him a great husband and a great father and a great friend. He was very loved."
“Today, we lost an American Hero: Husband, Father, Son, Medal of Honor Recipient - Special Agent Ronald J. Shurer II. From a grateful Nation and Agency — your memory and legacy will live on forever,” – the U.S. Secret Service.
Gowdy, former chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, was "struck" by how many people in the Obama administration had the power to request Flynn's name be unmasked.
Gowdy said the 'serious crime" must be investigated and brought to a conclusion, especially considering how much effort was spent to bring charges against Flynn. "So I ask the FBI again: how is your leak investigation going? I know how your Michael Flynn investigation went, I know the time and effort you spent to try to catch someone in a lie. How is your 10-year felony investigation going? It has been four years now."
Some moderate members in swing districts -- including Reps. Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, Joe Cunningham of South Carolina, Kendra Horn of Oklahoma, Cindy Axne of Iowa and Ben McAdams of Utah -- ripped the massive measure as a one-sided partisan bill that is going nowhere.
Karl Manke, 77, became a symbol of resistance when he opened the doors of his Owosso shop on May 4 and refused to close, pledging to keep his doors open until police arrest him or "Jesus walks in."
After a judge declined to sign an order to shut down his shop Monday without first holding a hearing, state regulators opted to suspend Manke’s barber and shop licenses. Manke is still able to cut hair until the suspension is served; it had not reached the barber’s hands as of Wednesday afternoon.
Manke’s attorney, Dave Kallman, told the Lansing State Journal that the state’s action against the 77-year-old barber is "an abuse of power." "I think it’s totally vindictive," Kallman said. "It's petty, it'’s totally in retribution because they didn’t like the court order from earlier this week."
Under Whitmer’s strict “stay-at-home” orders, hair salons and barbershops have been closed for weeks to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The governor has faced mounting criticism, including armed protests at the Capitol and death threats online, for her restrictions.
"I don’t need the governor to be my mother," Manke said.
As it turns out, President Obama isn’t wrong — at least not entirely. Our basic understanding of the rule of law is at risk, not because Bill Barr stepped in to prevent an unjust prosecution but because our institutions under the Obama administration were politicized in ways that should shock the American conscience.
"It was obvious then and it's been proven now. It was an attempted takedown of Donald Trump." In other words, an attempted coup against the lawfully-elected President of the United States.
Candidates backed by President Trump were outperforming expectations in two closely watched congressional special elections on Tuesday night, giving California Republicans a chance to claim a Democratic-held congressional seat in the state for the first time since 1998. Former Navy combat pilot Mike Garcia inched closer to retaking Democrat Katie Hill's California seat and Republican Tom Tiffany easily prevailed in Wisconsin. Trump backed Tiffany in the race, but due to the pandemic was unable to campaign in person for him.
Trump himself put up historic numbers in the Nebraska presidential primary. With less than half the vote in, Trump has already doubled his 2016 total in the state -- leading GOP Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel to tout what she called surging "enthusiasm" for the president's reelection.
"Frankly, this is the final straw. Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependen on how Tesla is treated in the future. Tesla is the last carmaker left in CA." – Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 9, 2020
Musk has called the shutdown and lockdown orders fascist and has become increasingly public in opposing them. Musk at first defied Alameda’s mid-March shutdown order and resisted pressure from the county and Fremont to idle the Fremont factory. While Tesla claimed it was an essential business, the county’s health officer disagreed and said the plant posed a public-health risk. Much of the Bay area has extended shelter-in-place orders through the end of May. Now Musk is joining the long parade of companies, and their jobs, leaving the former Golden State purely because it has become so anti-business.
Asked if former President Barack Obama's name is on the list of officials involving in unmasking Flynn, the source would not say but stressed the list would make waves.
In court documents filed last week, the Justice Department said that after reviewing newly disclosed information and other materials, it agreed with Flynn’s lawyers that his Jan. 24, 2017 interview with the FBI should never have taken place because he had not had inappropriate contacts with Russians. The interview, the department said, was "conducted without any legitimate investigative basis."
FBI agents did their best to hide their investigation and attempted to entrap Flynn.
Sidney Powell, one of Flynn’s lawyers, said the "whole thing was orchestrated and set up within the FBI, Clapper, Brennan and in the Oval Office meeting that day with President Obama." Did the scandal reach up to Obama? Powell responded, "Absolutely."
A number of events will play out in the coming months. The first are attempts by countries to reduce the Chinese role in their supply chain. Second are global efforts to reopen domestic economies. Third is the political infighting caused by need to blame someone for the effects of the coronavirus.
Unfettered trade with China, once seen as the cornerstone of international peace and prosperity, has now become a national security liability. Countries that fear Beijing are opening the distance. "Japan identified 518 of its roughly 3,800 listed firms as having operations core to national security, making them targets for stringent regulations, a list released by the Ministry of Finance (MOF) showed."
China's attempt to turn 2020 into a referendum on Trump-to-blame-not-China may put Biden in an awkward position because it is a Democratic article of faith that the Donald is always to blame. A 2020 “China election” would vex allies because even those with no affection for Trump cannot afford to see China win.
The largest pro-Trump PAC is already calling Joe Biden “Beijing Biden,” laying a trap for him to either defend China or bash it harder than Mr. Trump. Either way suits the president.
Iran and other nations are also looking to steal data and exploit the pandemic with attacks on infrastructure.
The F.B.I. and the Department of Homeland Security are preparing to issue a warning that China’s most skilled hackers and spies are working to steal American research in the crash effort to develop vaccines and treatments for the coronavirus. The efforts are part of a surge in cybertheft and attacks by nations seeking advantage in the pandemic.
It would be "abominable" if the Obama White House was behind the FBI's controversial interview of former national security adviser Michael Flynn, a former assistant director of intelligence for the bureau said Friday night.
Did the FBI conduct this interview at the behest of the Obama White House or was it motivated by their own now well-established personal biases and prejudices against President Trump?
"That has to be determined. If it's the former ... Well, if it's either, it's abominable."
The abrogation of the rule of law was in conducting an investigation that was not legally predicated.
"So if I go in and I talk you, about something... that's not a federal crime as an FBI agent and I accuse you of doing it and I have proof that you did it, but it's not a federal crime... and you lie to me. There's no materiality there because there's no reason for me to be investigating in the first place."
A key part of reopening America involves going on the offensive when it comes to protecting our constitutional rights. Weeks ago, I sent a letter to the Attorney General expressing concern over media reports that he was considering "suspending" a variety of constitutional protections for American citizens. Not only has that not come to pass on the federal level, but he is now firing a warning shot against Mayors and Governors who have taken certain restrictions too far. For example, individuals and congregations can and should decide for themselves whether to exercise their First Amendment right to protest or hold an in-person worship service, but that decision solely belongs to them, NOT the government. And I'm sorry "Mayor" that you hate the Second Amendment, but this crisis doesn't give you the authority to "suspend" those rights either. Thank you to the Trump Administration for helping protect our liberty and for working to reopen our country!
My thoughts:  If you want to see real rebellion, just go ahead and try to "suspend" Constitutional Rights!  The Constitution supersedes all else, and there is no provision to do that; to attempt it is to destroy the Constitution.  Every public official, policeman, and military serviceman has sworn to uphold, defend, and protect the Constitution - not to take orders from anyone!
The Congressional Budget Office estimates that this year’s federal budget deficit will be $3.7 trillion, with public debt projected at 101% of GDP. And that was before the "phase four" $484 billion relief package passed by Congress late last week.
On the other hand, these same governmental bodies are repealing laws, suspending regulations, and ignoring previous restrictions that impeded the ability of the private sector to act. They are liberating doctors, nurses, drug manufacturers, test makers, makers of personal protective equipment, etc., to do things that were illegal to do only a few months ago.
The Americans for Tax Reform calculates that 397 regulations have been waived in order to fight COVID-19. That count is probably way too low. The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has eliminated so many restrictions it would be hard to count them all.
Fortunately, the Trump administration was ahead of the game, making many needed changes before the COVID-19 virus hit. Once in crisis mode, Congress and state governments also responded – apparently in sheer desperation.
But the regulatory approach may be making things worse. A nationwide lockdown has put the economy into a financial coma. Although the purpose of those measures was to keep people healthy, it may be having the opposite effect. Between people’s fear of going to emergency rooms and government orders to cease all elective surgery, patients with non-coronavirus conditions are not getting health care.
Gowdy then reacted to the release Thursday of interview transcripts from the House Intelligence Committee's own Russia investigation. "I can tell you I was in that room for a year with [Rep. Eric] Swalwell [D-Calif.] and Schiff, and it was the longest damn year of my life," he said. "Every witness would say the exact same thing." Gowdy recalled that he would ask each witness whether they had any clear evidence that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia and receiving the same answer. "The answer was none."
Gowdy also railed against Comey over his reaction to the Flynn news, which was also posted on Twitter Thursday.  Gowdy said that Comey should title his next book "How My Arrogance Ruined the Reputation of the World's Premier Law Enforcement Agency.". He remarked that Comey should "stay the hell in whatever woods he's in on his Twitter profile."
After the briefing, Obama asked Yates and Comey to "stay behind," and said he had "learned of the information about Flynn" and his conversation with Russia's ambassador about sanctions. Obama "specified that he did not want any additional information on the matter, but was seeking information on whether the White House should be treating Flynn any differently, given the information."  A previous memo from Rice stated that Biden also stayed behind after the main briefing had ended.
Obama had fired Flynn as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014; Obama cited insubordination, while Flynn asserted he was pushed out for his aggressive stance on combating lslamic extremism.
The Logan Act, an obscure statute, has never been used successfully in a criminal prosecution; enacted in 1799 in an era before telephones, it was intended to prevent individuals from falsely claiming to represent the United States government abroad. In its motion to dismiss Flynn's case on Thursday, the DOJ noted that the law was an unserious dead letter.
Newly released transcripts of interviews from the House Intelligence Committee’s long-running Russia investigation reveal top Obama officials acknowledged that they knew of no “empirical evidence” of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia in the 2016 election, despite their concerns and suspicions.
McCabe was asked during his interview in 2017 what was the most “damning or important piece of evidence in the dossier that” he “now knows is true.”  McCabe replied: “We have not been able to prove the accuracy of all the information.”  “You don’t know if it’s true or not?” a House investigator asked, to which McCabe replied: “That’s correct.”
Schiff released the files after facing pressure earlier this week from Republicans to do so.
The department says it is dropping the case "after a considered review of all the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information."  The DOJ said it had concluded that Flynn's interview by the FBI was "untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI's counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn" and that the interview was "conducted without any legitimate investigative basis."
Flynn allies had argued that he was essentially set up in a perjury trap.
The DOJ was "not persuaded that the January 24, 2017 interview was conducted with a legitimate investigative basis and therefore does not believe Mr. Flynn's statements were material even if untrue."
"He was an innocent man... Now in my book he’s an even greater warrior," Trump said Thursday, while criticizing Obama administration officials.  "They’re human scum. ... It’s treason."
Transcripts of House Intelligence Committee interviews that have been cleared for release show top law enforcement and intelligence officials affirming they had no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.
This would align with the results of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation — which found no evidence of illegal or criminal coordination between President Trump, the Trump campaign and Russia in 2016
But the numerous transcribed interviews could raise further questions about committee Chairman Adam Schiff’s past statements saying that there was “direct evidence” of collusion.
"In January of 2017, the subsource disavowed the [Christopher Steele] dossier.  And without the dossier, there is no [FISA] warrant.  So they knew that the Carter Page thing was a fraud.  They wanted to close the case against Flynn.  We have Papadopoulos on record denying working with the Russians, saying to do so would be treason.  So the foundation for the Mueller investigation is crumbling."
"The legal foundation to justify Mueller's appointment in my view does not exist.  That’s why this memo is so important.  They name four people.  Rosenstein tells Mueller to look at four people [on] August 2nd, 2017.  Carter Page is one of the four.  In January, eight months before the subsource disavowed the dossier, there was no legal justification to suspect Carter Page of being a Russian agent because it all depended on the dossier. And that crumbled in January."
The entire Mueller investigation was illegitimate to begin with.
As the Trump-Russia narrative collapses and evidence mounts that the investigation into the Trump campaign was politically-motivated and baseless, the “Media Russia Hoax Rats” who pushed the narrative are panicking.
"I haven’t seen the evidence that would justify an investigation into the Trump campaign, at all – because it was made up by the Clinton campaign. Those are just the facts."
"Throwing Texans in jail who have had their businesses shut down through no fault of their own is nonsensical, and I will not allow it to happen," Governor Abbott said.
"As a mother, Ms. Luther wanted to feed her children," Paxton said in a letter to the judge asking him to free her.  "As a small business owner, she wanted to help her employees feed their children.  Needless to say, these are laudable goals that warrant the exercise of enforcement discretion."
Salon owner to judge:  "I have to disagree with you, sir, when you say that I'm selfish because feeding my kids is not selfish.  I have hairstylists that are going hungry because they would rather feed their kids.  So, sir, if you think the law is more important than kids getting fed, then please go ahead with your decision.  But I am not going to shut the salon."
A 40-year-old Idaho mother was arrested for allegedly refusing to leave a closed playground where she had brought her two children to play.  Her arrest later prompted a demonstration at city hall by more than 100 supporters.
In North Carolina, members of the “ReOpen NC” group were arrested last week, accused of resisting a public officer and violating the Democratic governor’s executive order.  "If you feel the need to stay home, it is your God-given right to do so. But we want to live!  [Gov.] Roy Cooper has shown again and again how out of touch he really is."
Across the country, governors such as Laura Kelly of Kansas and Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan have faced opposition for the shutdown orders, such as Kelly’s limits on church gatherings – which faced GOP opposition and later a temporary restraining order – and Whitmer’s restrictions against traveling to relatives' homes, and on sales of items such as gardening supplies, both of which were scaled back after public protests.
If the Governors' orders were so important, then why were they scaled back?  Or are the Governors drunk with power?
The Governors' orders are wrong.  There are no exceptions to the Bill of Rights.
"The office of the former president, Barack Obama, blasted a congressional investigation into Biden's dealing with Ukraine.  Wonder why.  Now, the office actually accused the investigation [of] giving credence to a 'Russian disinformation campaign,' and this ridiculous letter insinuated lawmakers were just spreading Russian propaganda.  This is all a lie, what Obama put out tonight."
"In reality, it was Obama.  It was his administration.  It was Biden. They are the ones that spent months and months propagating the Russian disinformation campaign.  Uh, Barack?  Did you ever hear of the dirty Russian dossier that Hillary Clinton paid for?  Of course you have."
The letter, addressed to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), which manages presidential records, was written in response to a request on Nov. 21, 2019, by Sens. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Ron Johnson R-Wis., for Obama administration records on Ukraine-related meetings.  The letter described the senators' request as improper use of the NARA’s release terms.
"Well, Barack, what were you hiding from we, the people?  We would like answers."
The Justice Department has sided with a Virginia church suing Gov. Ralph Northam after police threatened a pastor with jail time or a $2,500 fine for violating lockdown restrictions by holding a service on Palm Sunday – marking the latest incident where federal lawyers or local courts have challenged a state’s stay-at-home mandates during the coronavirus pandemic.
U.S. Attorney General William Barr made it clear last month that federal prosecutors should "be on the lookout" for overly restrictive state and local shutdown orders that may infringe on people's constitutional rights – especially when it comes to the First Amendment.
The Justice Department said the U.S. regularly files statements of interest on "important issues of religious liberty in courts at every level, from trial courts to the Supreme Court of the United States."
The Supreme Court on April 27 remanded the NRA-backed case of New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, Inc. v. City of New York (NYSRPA v. NYC) to the lower courts without addressing whether the regulations challenged in the case violated the right to keep and bear arms.  The court held that because the challenged laws had been changed after it decided to hear the case, the original dispute was moot.  Any residual challenges to the new laws, according to the court, would have to be decided in the lower courts with an amended complaint and additional development of the evidentiary record.
At issue in the case was whether the Second Amendment allowed New York City to prohibit licensed handgun owners from transporting their guns, locked in a case and unloaded, outside the city for lawful purposes.
The Supreme Court quickly signaled that it may be considering another Second Amendment case "soon".  By the end of the day on which the court had issued its opinion in NYSRPA v. NYC, it had also distributed 10 additional Second Amendment cases to be considered during a Friday conference on which new cases the court may hear.
Social security is expected to exhaust by 2035, according to a Trustees Report
A report released in late April states that in 2035 Social Security is expected to exhaust its combined trust funds, leaving the program with no excess cash reserves to dip into.  At that point, current and future beneficiaries alike can expect a 21% reduction in their scheduled benefits.
Lawmakers are specifically seeking to question a mysterious FBI agent, Joe Pientka, who participated in the January 2017 White House interview that led to Flynn's prosecution.
Pientka was also intimately involved in the probe of former Trump aide Carter Page, which the DOJ has since acknowledged was riddled with fundamental errors and premised on a discredited dossier.
Pientka was con- spicuously removed from the FBI's website after Fox News contacted the FBI about his extensive role in Crossfire Hurricane Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) matters -- a change first noticed by Twitter user Techno Fog -- but sources say Pientka remains in a senior role at the agency's San Francisco field office.  Last December the FBI asserted that reporting on Pientka's identity would potentially endanger his life and would serve no legitimate journalistic purpose.
FBI Director Wray has suggested in testimony that several agents could be under internal investigation by the FBI.
Congressmen Jordan and Johnson further demanded the FBI "produce all documents and communications referring or relating to Crossfire Razor, the FBI code name for its investigation into LTG Flynn."
The Republicans also wrote that the bureau needed to "explain why the Committee and the American public are learning of the FBI’s misconduct with respect to LTG Flynn from court filings rather than from you."
My Leftist friends (as well as many ardent #NeverTrumpers) constantly ask me if I’m not bothered by Donald Trump’s lack of decorum.  They ask if I don’t think his tweets are "beneath the dignity of the office."  Here’s my answer.
Western intel details how China deceived, bullied the world in response to deadly pandemic
China intentionally hid or destroyed evidence of the coronavirus outbreak, leading to the loss of tens of thousands of lives around the world.
The dossier touches on themes that have been discussed in media reports about the outbreak of the virus, including an initial denial by China that the virus could be transmitted between humans, the silencing or "disappearing" of doctors who tried to speak up, the destruction of evidence in laboratories and refusal to provide live samples to international scientists working on a vaccine.
The file notes that China began censoring news of the virus on search engines and social media beginning Dec. 31, deleting terms including “SARS variation," “Wuhan Seafood market” and “Wuhan Unknown Pneumonia.” Three days later, on Jan. 3, China’s National Health Commission ordered virus samples to be either moved to designated testing facilities or destroyed, while simultaneously issuing a "no-publication order" related to the disease.
Most damningly, the dossier states that Chinese authorities denied that the virus could be spread between humans until Jan. 20, "despite evidence of human-human transmission from early December."
Standards in Wuhan were disregarded before the virus leaked, prompting Beijing to initiate a cover-up.  Sources also claimed the WHO was complicit from the beginning in helping China cover its tracks.
According to the dossier, the team's work at the Wuhan lab involved discovering samples of coronavirus within a cave in Yunnan province and synthesizing a bat-derived coronavirus that could not be cured.
"I don't know if he convinced anybody either way.  Voters are just gonna have to never know the truth and just factor this into their decision in November."
"He left himself vulnerable for sure. When asked if he remembered Reade, he dodged."
"Biden was doing great in that interview until he confessed.  First he had the total denial.  The denial was pretty strong.  And then he says as a complaint.  'You know, I don't know why all of a sudden 27 years 'this' gets raised."
One day after California Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered all beaches in the state closed to help slow the spread of the coronavirus, hundreds of protesters flooded the Orange County city of Huntington Beach to demonstrate against the action.
U.S. Attorney for Connecticut John Durham has reviewed the bombshell files released earlier this week showing FBI officials discussed whether they wanted to interview Michael Flynn in order to “get him to lie.”
Charges could be justified against officials, and that those reviewing the Justice Department and the FBI's actions are building a "serious case." What the files show "could be sufficient for some charges against agents." "They’re building a very serious case."
Documents unsealed late Wednesday by the Justice Department revealed that top FBI officials openly questioned if their "goal" in interviewing Flynn in January 2017 was "to get him to lie, so we can prosecute him or get him fired."
The files prompted accusations from Flynn's defenders that agents essentially talked about setting a perjury trap.
"The president has been briefed that the case is being pursued, and it’s serious."
"If they don’t have it, they’re not going to bring it," one source said. "But they think they’ve got it."
These are not mere procedural quibbles, but profound questions about the integrity and legality of the FBI’s investigations into key officials in the incoming Trump administration, including Trump himself.  A pattern of collusive illegality on the part of the FBI and key Justice Department officials has become increasingly clear from these and other revelations.
Flynn, you will recall, pleaded guilty to a charge of lying to federal officials.  But he did so only after being forced to sell his home to fund his legal defense, and after threats to prosecute his son if he didn’t cop a plea.
With a bulging ventilator stack, Cuomo has directed the National Guard to remove the unused, life-saving machines from medical facilities and reallocate or return them to other states.
According to New York Assemblyman Mike LiPetri, a Republican, this only adds to the existing "$6 billion deficit Cuomo administration," given that much of the ventilator stockpile has, at least to date, not been needed.  "We went to Albany and voted on a state budget in the middle of the night that was filled with political pet projects and misguided priorities," LiPetri continued. "Nowhere did it include hazard pay for those on the front lines or small business relief for those on the verge of closing their doors forever."
Coronavirus patients at a Brooklyn nursing home were denied admission to both of the medical facilities established in New York to handle victims of the pandemic even though beds were mostly empty.  The snub came weeks after New York health officials were warned by the nursing home operator – where 55 people have died – that there was a grave concern, and requesting patients be transferred to the temporary facilities.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is in the process of shuttering the much-touted, 2,500-bed Javits Center – having treated only around 1,000 patients over the course of more than a month.
On Thursday, the heralded Navy ship – which was equipped with 1,000 beds and intended to take the burden off other hospitals and treat non-coronavirus patients before finally taking on a handful of those with the infection – sailed away, barely used.
"[The models] have been extremely inaccurate," says Dr. David Samadi, a New York-based surgeon.  "These models gave a horrifying prediction that suggested COVID-19 could kill anywhere from 200,000 to 1.7 million Americans.  Currently, it looks to be more like 60,000 to 65,000 deaths.  While any American life lost to this virus is a shame, the death and infection rate is looking not quite so bleak as it was in the beginning."
President Donald Trump on Friday urged Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to work with and not against citizens calling for her to loosen the stranglehold on everyday life imposed by her executive orders.
"The Governor of Michigan should give a little, and put out the fire. These are very good people, but they are angry. They want their lives back again, safely! See them, talk to them, make a deal," Trump tweeted.
Trump’s tweet followed a contentious Thursday in which Michigan residents who oppose Whitmer’s edicts demonstrated outside of the Michigan State Capitol building, with some entering the building as well.  Protesters waved signs and American flags, and in some cases carried legal firearms.