Author: News Max

President Donald Trump raised $24.8 million in the less-than 24 hours after kicking off his re-election campaign.

The staggering sum was announced in a tweet on Wednesday morning by Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel. It dwarfs what the top Democratic contenders in the 2020 White House primary raised over the course of the first three months of this year.

It’s a demonstration of the power incumbency, while underscoring Democratic worries that they are not doing enough to prepare for the matchup with Trump.

Trump already reported $48.7 million cash on hand at the end of March, spread across three committees tied to his campaign. The Republican National Committee had an additional $34.7 million during the same period.

The Democratic National Committee had just $7.5 million with $6.2 million in debt.

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump’s plan to begin deporting “millions” of undocumented immigrants as soon as next week will start with people who have defied final deportation orders, acting Immigration, Customs and Enforcement Director Mark Morgan says.

Morgan told Fox News Wednesday night that the process would begin with those who have had previous access to a lawyer and a court hearing but haven’t complied with the final edict. ICE will help people who voluntarily comply execute an “ordered, dignified” exit from the U.S., he said.

“We have a demographic that has had an enormous amount of due process,” Morgan said. “We’re not going to exempt any demographic.”

The president’s announcement of the plan earlier this week was seen as a signal he may be opening a new front in his war on immigration ahead of his formal his re-election campaign kickoff last night.

Trump said in a Monday tweet that ICE would begin removing migrants “as fast as they come in” but didn’t provide details about what the new initiative would entail. Morgan said Wednesday that the operation will focus on those who have been issued final deportation orders by federal judges but remain in the country.

The president has been focusing on undocumented immigrants — one of his signature issues — in recent weeks as he tries to make the case that voters should re-elect him in 2020.

Morgan said told CNN earlier this month that the new ICE effort could prove a disincentive for migrant families currently traveling to the U.S. who count on legal limits on the time children can be held in government custody to secure release into the country.

Trump is eager to demonstrate that he’s taking a hard line on immigration as he increasingly focuses on his re-election campaign, which he’s set to launch Tuesday night in Orlando, Florida.

In 2016, Trump won the White House with a populist message and promises to build a wall and stop flows of illegal immigration. But the president has struggled to secure congressional support for construction of his signature border barrier, and migration flows have surged in recent months as migrant families from Central America pour into the country from Mexico.

The campaign of Kamala Harris, a senator from California seeking the Democratic nomination to oppose Trump in the general election, said Trump’s tweet is evidence he wants “to rid our country of ethnic and racial groups he doesn’t like.”

“History has shown us what happens when governments begin mass roundups based on ethnic background or national origin,” Harris campaign manager Juan Rodriguez said in a statement.

Earlier this month, Trump threatened to impose new tariffs on Mexico if the country didn’t stem those migrant flows. The U.S. ultimately relented after the Mexican government agreed to step up internal immigration enforcement efforts.

The administration has also requested $4.5 billion in emergency funds that would help address the surge of migrants at the border but not be used for wall construction.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Outgoing White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders is “extremely serious” about a campaign for governor of Arkansas, including being in contact, along with allies, with donors and state Republican operatives, according to sources who have spoken with her recently.

“She would be formidable if she were to get into the race,” Roby Brock, a longtime Arkansas political reporter, told Politico about Sanders, whose father, Mike Huckabee, was the governor of Arkansas from 1996-2007. “She’s got the Huckabee political machine, the (Sen. John) Boozman political machine, and the (President Donald) Trump political machine.”

Sanders did not comment for the article, and some of her allies said she’s just making contact with longtime friends, and that she’d be calling them whether or not she’s planning a race for governor.

Trump has encouraged Sanders to run, including during his campaign rollout Tuesday night when he introduced her on stage by saying he had “a feeling” she’d be running “for a certain gubernatorial position.”

Republican operatives in Arkansas also pointed out that Sanders could bring in more money than other expected candidates from backers both in the state and nationally, as Trump remains popular in the state.

“Arkansans believe she has done a superb job as press secretary for the president,” said Doyle Webb, chairman of the Arkansas Republican Party. “I wouldn’t want to speculate about what her political future is. I’m fairly certain that [Trump’s] support and any support she’s built on her own would be a considerable [asset].”

Sanders started working in politics for her father’s campaigns, including as national political director for his presidential campaign in 2008 and as campaign manager when he ran in 2016, before joining the Trump campaign as a senior adviser.

Source: NewsMax Politics

The White House mounted a last-ditch effort Tuesday to prevent former communications director Hope Hicks from speaking with lawmakers, saying she is “absolutely immune” from discussing her time working for President Donald Trump.

According to Axios, White House counsel Pat Cipollone sent a letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., to argue against Hicks being compelled to testify as the Democrat-led panel investigates the Trump administration.

“Ms. Hicks is absolutely immune from being compelled to testify before Congress with respect to matters occurring during her service as a senior adviser to the President,” reads the letter, which then makes a multi-pronged argument to support the claim.

Among the reasons Cipollone cited is the fact Department of Justice precedent dictates the “president and his immediate advisers” cannot be forced to testify in front of Congress.

Cipollone added later, “the president has directed Ms. Hicks not to answer questions before the committee relating to the time of her service as a senior adviser to the president.

“The long-standing principle of immunity for senior advisers to the president is firmly rooted in the Constitution’s separation of powers and protects the core functions of the presidency, and we are adhering to this well-established precedent in order to ensure that future presidents can effectively execute the responsibilities of the Office of the President.”

Hicks, who now works as the chief communications officer of Fox, will testify on Capitol Hill behind closed doors Wednesday.

According to Politico, Democrats on the Judiciary Committee will ask her about five specific instances of possible obstruction of justice committed by Trump.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Almost four years to the day President Donald Trump announced his run for the White House from Trump Tower in New York City, he took the stage at a massive rally in Orlando, Fla., on Tuesday night to announce his plans for a second term.

Taking the stage with first lady Melania Trump, and his vice president, Mike Pence, and his wife Karen, Trump beamed as his wife declared: “It has been my honor to serve as first lady of this incredible country for the past two years. And I’m excited to do it for six more.”

“With every ounce of heart, might and sweat … we are going to keep keep America great again and we will indeed keep America great,” Trump said. “Better than ever before. And that is why tonight I stand before you to officially launch my campaign for a second term as president of the UnitedStates.”

Trump announced his first improbable run for the White House on June 16, 2015.

After pounding Democrats, Hillary Clinton, the media and the two-year investigation of Russia meddling by special counsel Robert Mueller, Trump declared:

“The only thing these corrupt politicians will understand is an earthquake at the ballot box. We did it once and now we will do it again and this time we’re going to finish the job.”​

“2016 was not merely another four-year election. This was a defining moment in American history, ask them right there,” he said, pointing at the news media in the crowd. He then smirked as the crowd booed and chanted their disdain.

“That is a lot of fake news back there,” he declared.

“Our patriotic movement has been under assault from the very first day,” he declared. “We accomplished more than any other president has in the first two and a half years of a presidency. And under circumstances that no president has had to deal with before, because we did, in the middle of the great and illegal witch-hunt.

“We went through the greatest witch-hunt in political history. The only collusion was committed by the Democrats, the fake news media, and their operatives and the people who funded the phony dossier, crooked Hillary Clinton and the DNC,” he said.

“It was all an illegal attempt to overturn the results of the election, spy on our campaign, which is what they did, and subvert our democracy. Remember, the insurance policy just in case Hillary Clinton lost.”

At which point the crowd burst into the chant: “Lock her up!”

Of Democrats, he complained:

“They only care about their own political power,” he said. “They went after my family, my business, my finances, my employees, almost everyone that I have ever known or worked with, but they are really going after you. That’s what it is all about. It’s not about us. It’s about you. They tried to erase your vote, erase your legacy of the greatest campaign and the greatest election probably in the history of our country.

“Our radical Democrat opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice and rage. They want to destroy you and they want to destroy our country as we know it.”

He framed the 2020 election as “a verdict on the amazing progress we have made” and “a rigged system.”

“So if you want to shut down this rigged system once and for all, then show up November 3rd. That’s your day, big day, and vote, vote, vote.We’re going to have a big, big day.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Only MSNBC is being allowed to deliver live coverage of South Carolina’s Democratic convention Saturday, squeezing out CNN, C-SPAN, and Fox at an event where 21 presidential candidates are expected to speak, the Washington Examiner reported.

CNN filed a complaint, the news outlet reported.

The South Carolina Democratic Party pulled the plug on the networks Monday, according to the Examiner. All three of the shunned outlets had planned live coverage.

In an email to the media, and without explanation, the party announced MSNBC had the exclusive rights to cover the event live, the Examiner reported.

“Never has what is an open event given exclusive rights to a single network,” C-SPAN political director Steve Scully told the Examiner.

“We’ll deal with 49 other state Democratic Parties. It’s ridiculous. It’s an open event,” he added. “We’re not happy.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump on Tuesday stood by claims he made about five men who were wrongly convicted for the brutal rape of a female jogger in New York City’s Central Park 30 years ago.

Dubbed the “Central Park Five,” the men have faced renewed attention after becoming the subjects of a Netflix miniseries about them.

The attack made national headlines in 1989 as a sign that crime in the city had spiraled out of control. The victim in the case, a 28-year-old investment banker, nearly died from the incident and was left with no memory of it.

Amid the intense media attention, Trump, then a real estate developer in New York, spoke out about the case and took out a full-page ad in several of the city’s newspapers calling for the reinstatement of the death penalty.

Asked by a reporter outside the White House whether he would apologize to the five men, Trump said: “Why do you bring this question up now? It’s an interesting time to bring it up.”

“You have people on both sides of that. They admitted their guilt. If you look at Linda Fairstein and if you look at some of the prosecutors, they think that the city should never have settled that case. So we’ll leave it at that,” he said, referring to one of the prosecutors in the case.

The case raised questions about race as a factor in the criminal justice system. All five of the men – Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana, Korey Wise and Yusef Salaam – were black or Hispanic, while the victim was white.

The men were all between the ages of 14 and 16 at the time of the attack. They were imprisoned for between five and 13 years.

Though they all confessed after long police interrogations, they each later recanted their statements, saying they had been exhausted and coerced by police officers.

Their convictions were overturned in 2002, after another man confessed to the crime and DNA tests confirmed his guilt.

In 2014, New York City agreed to pay more than $40 million to the five men.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Former Vice President Joe Biden told supporters at a Manhattan fundraiser he has received donations from 360,000 people, with an average contribution size of $55, The Hill reported.

That amounts to nearly $20 million, which would be the largest fundraising total disclosed by any 2020 Democratic presidential candidate.

In the first quarter of this year, before Biden entered the race, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., reported raising $18.2 million, while Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., said she had received $12 million from donors during the same time period.

The second quarter of the year covers the period between April 1 and June 30, and candidates have until July 15 to report those fundraising totals.

Biden, who is one of the most proficient fundraisers in the Democratic primary race, is expected to raise as much as $25 million in the second quarter.

In just the first 24 hours after he announced his candidacy in April, Biden’s campaign announced he had received $6.3 million in donations.

Biden told his supporters at the Manhattan event, which was a $2,800-per-person fundraiser, that those who have contributed to his campaign in such large numbers have “allowed me to be able to compete in a way that I’ve never been able to before,” according to The Hill.

Other Democratic candidates are also expected to report significant fundraising totals for the second quarter, with South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg reportedly raising $7 million in April alone.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has withdrawn from consideration to head the U.S. military, President Donald Trump said on Tuesday, adding that Shanahan wanted to spend more time with his family.

Trump said Secretary of the Army Mark Esper will be named as the new acting defense secretary. Esper had been considered a leading contender for the job if Shanahan was ultimately not confirmed.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Alabama Judge Roy Moore is expected to make an announcement on his 2020 Senate intentions at an event Thursday, Politico reported.

“Judge has spoken with most all of you on the phone over the past few weeks and is appreciative of your warm support,” Judge Moore’s wife Kayla wrote in a note to supporters, according to the report. “We will be making an official announcement regarding the race in Montgomery this Thursday.”

Moore, who narrowly lost to Sen. Doug Jones, D-Ala., in a special election in 2017, was dodged by allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct with underage girls decades before becoming a judge and aspiring politician.

Despite Sen. Jones being viewed as vulnerable in his re-election campaign in the long-red state of Alabama, Moore’s prospective campaign relaunch has been met with cold, if not frozen, response from congressional Republicans.

President Donald Trump urged Moore to stay out of the race, saying he cannot win.

The Republican primary for the Alabama Senate race figures to be crowded, including Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Ala., ex-Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville, state Rep. Arnold Mooney, and state Secretary of State John Merrill, according to Politico.

Source: NewsMax Politics

The United States will maintain its pressure campaign on Iran and continue to deter aggression in the region, but does not want the conflict with Tehran to escalate, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday.

“We have been engaged in many messages, even this moment right here, communicating to Iran that we are there to deter aggression,” Pompeo told reporters at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida. “President Trump does not want war and we will continue to communicate that message while doing the things that are necessary to protect American interests in the region.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

As President Donald Trump denounces “fake polling,” the popularity of daughter Ivanka Trump just might be a catalyst for re-election in a 2020 race that can turn on the narrowest of margins, Newsweek reports.

The report cites a Firehouse Strategies and 0ptimus poll that has Ivanka’s favorability trumping her presidential father in three key swing states: Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

“While not by overwhelming margins, Ivanka Trump maintains better net favorability among likely voters in these three states than her father does,” according to the pollsters.

Those rust-belt states were decisive for President Trump’s election in 2016 and Ivanka’s popularity could prove pivotal, according to Newsweek.

Ivanka Trump’s results in the poll:

  • Pennsylvania (+3): 38% favorable, 35% unfavorable.
  • Michigan (+1): 37% favorable, 36% unfavorable.
  • Wisconsin (-4): 35% favorable, 39% unfavorable.

President Trump’s favorability margins in the poll:

  • Pennsylvania -3 points.
  • Michigan -5 points.
  • Wisconsin -7 points.

President Trump has lashed out at polling and fired three pollsters who leaked unfavorable results to the media this week, but his poll also has former Vice President Joe Biden leading in the hypothetical matchup in those three battleground states.

According to former White House economic adviser Gary Cohn, as quoted in “Kushner, Inc.: Greed. Ambition. Corruption. The Extraordinary Story of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump,” per Newsweek, Ivanka Trump is already projecting a presidential flair.

“She thinks she’s going to be president of the United States,” Cohn said, according to author Vicky Ward. “She thinks this is like the Kennedys, the Bushes, and now the Trumps.”

The Firehouse/0ptimus poll was conducted June 11-13 among 1,687 likely voters.

Source: NewsMax Politics

The Orlando Sentinel’s editorial board has announced that the newspaper is “not endorsing” President Donald Trump despite its long history of endorsing Republican presidential candidates.

The newspaper made the announcement the same day Trump is set to officially announce his reelection campaign in Orlando. The Sentinel’s editorial board did not endorse any specific candidate, but noted that “there’s no point pretending we would ever recommend that readers vote for Trump.

“After 2½ years we’ve seen enough,” they write. “Enough of the chaos, the division, the schoolyard insults, the self-aggrandizement, the corruption, and especially the lies.”

They add, “Trump’s successful assault on truth is the great casualty of this presidency, followed closely by his war on decency.

“Trump insults political opponents and national heroes alike with middle-school taunts. He demonstrates no capacity for empathy or remorse.”

They go on to accuse the president of having “diminished our standing in the world. He reneges on deals, attacks allies and embraces enemies,” singling out his praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

The editorial board notes that if a Republican like Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah or Ohio Gov. John Kasich “successfully primaried the president, we would eagerly give them a look. Same if an independent candidate mounted a legitimate campaign.

“We’d even consider backing Trump if, say, he found the proverbial cure for cancer or — about as likely — changed the essence of who he is (he won’t).

“The nation must endure another 1½ years of Trump. But it needn’t suffer another four beyond that.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Despite tough sanctions and allegations of blame on Gulf of Oman oil tanker attacks pinned on Iran, President Donald Trump does not want war with Iran, because it would become “Trump’s War,” according to Pat Buchanan.

“President Donald Trump cannot want war with Iran,” Buchanan wrote in an opinion piece for CNSNews.com. “. . . It would widen the ‘forever war,’ which Trump said he would end, to a nation of 80 million people, three times as large as Iraq. It would become the defining issue of his presidency, as the Iraq War became the defining issue of George W. Bush’s presidency.

“And if war comes now, it would be known as ‘Trump’s War.'”

Buchanan pointed to the provocations of the Trump administration’s moves of decertifying the Iran nuclear agreement, reimposing sanctions and a maximum pressure campaign to deter nuclear arms buildup, and designating Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization.

“Tehran has denied any role in the tanker attacks, helped put out the fire on one tanker, and accused its enemies of “false flag’ attacks to instigate a war,” Buchanan continued, offering three results of the latest dustup:

  • Renegotiate with Tehran.
  • Await for the collapse of the “fragile” regime.
  • Military strike and accepting “Trump’s War.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Marc Lotter, Donald Trump’s campaign director of strategic communications, says the president’s unfulfilled 2016 campaign promises will make a “great platform” for 2020.

Lotter make his comments during an interview Tuesday morning on CNN’s “New Day.”

Asked by CNN’s John Berman about promises on erasing the national the debt and replacing Obamacare, Lotter replied: “In a way, that makes a great platform for the president’s 2020 campaign to make sure that we can continue to work on those things that he has done. It’s been a great two and a half years, and we’re looking forward to another four more years…”

Lotter blamed Democrats in Congress for blocking Trump’s efforts to deal with fiscal concerns.

“Well, it’s something that continues to need to be worked on,” he said. “And what the president will say is not only do we need a president who is focused on these actions, but we also need Congress. What we need are more conservatives with a fiscally responsible outlook that will cut spending.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., one of the most vulnerable U.S. senators running for re-election next year, will receive backing from Americans for Prosperity, the political arm of the influential Koch network, CNBC reported Tuesday.

The director of AFP’s Colorado operation, Jesse Mallory, explained Gardner’s willingness to stand up to President Donald Trump is one of the main reasons for the group’s support.

“He was one of the first five GOP senators to back a proposal in 2018 to rein in the president’s authority to impose tariffs unilaterally, and has called on the president to work with Congress to avoid prolonging the trade war that is driving up prices for consumers and businesses and killing jobs in industries that depend on imported components, in Colorado and across the country,” Mallory wrote in an op-ed published in the Colorado Sun on Tuesday.

In addition to benefitting from AFP Action’s grassroots mobilization and advertising campaigns, the Libertarian organization will also be hosting a rally for Gardner in Denver on June 26.

The endorsement by the AFP for Gardner comes as political analysts are labeling Colorado’s senate seat as a possible pickup opportunity for the Democrats in 2020, with the GOP defending at least 20 seats in the Senate in the election next year.

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Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump has a tough re-election battle ahead of him, but he’ll be fighting on the strength of having a “remarkable economy” and for keeping his promises, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Tuesday.

“It’s tough, but I think we are at 92% negative press coverage,” Gingrich told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.” “The fact that he is still standing is kind of amazing.”

Trump’s record on the economy, job creation and rising wages are bringing him credit, Gingrich added, and “he has been very good on judges, very good on deregulation, very good on tax cuts.”

But the president thinks he’ll win, said Gingrich, and “he believes it’s going to be a fight to the finish, but he also believes that the Democrats are pretty weak, and I am inclined to agree with him. I think they could stumble into a disaster if they are not careful.”

Gingrich’s comments came as hundreds of people camped out in Orlando waiting for the president’s official campaign announcement Tuesday night, and he said that’s because Trump has a “very intense relationship with his base.”

He noted that about 100,000 people registered to attend the kickoff event, but the building where it’s being held has capacity for 25,000.

“Trump is unique in that he was elected in the end by all the people who were mad at Washington, who wanted somebody with goals, who didn’t mind that he had weaknesses, as long as he was a fighter,” said Gingrich. “He has convinced them he is a fighter.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., is ramping up the rhetoric against the Trump administration’s work to stem mass migration, calling the centers where arrested illegals are being detained “concentration camps,” comparing it to the Holocaust.

“The United States is running concentration camps on our southern border,” AOC told her Instagram followers in a live video Monday night, as posted by the Washington Examiner. “And that is exactly what they are. They are concentration camps.”

AOC’s rhetoric was reiterated via Twitter on Tuesday morning:

“This administration has established concentration camps on the southern border of the United States for immigrants, where they are being brutalized with dehumanizing conditions and dying. This is not hyperbole. It is the conclusion of expert analysis.”

AOC was linking to an Esquire opinion piece that compared the Trump administration’s stopping of asylum seekers at the border and housing them at U.S. centers to the concentration camps of Nazi Germany, where they housed Jews during World War II before slaughtering them.

The Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. – when reached by the Examiner – sent an essay warning “Why Holocaust Analogies Are Dangerous.”

“It is all too easy to forget that there are many people still alive for whom the Holocaust is not ‘history,’ but their life story and that of their families,” Holocaust historian Edna Friedberg wrote. “These are not abstract tragedies on call to win an argument or an election. They carry the painful memories of the brutal murder of a cherished baby boy, the rape of a beloved sister, the parents arrested and never seen again. . . .

“Careless Holocaust analogies may demonize, demean, and intimidate their targets. But there is a cost for all of us because they distract from the real issues challenging our society, because they shut down productive, thoughtful discourse.

“At a time when our country needs dialogue more than ever, it is especially dangerous to exploit the memory of the Holocaust as a rhetorical cudgel. We owe the survivors more than that. And we owe ourselves more than that.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump, whose administration has blamed Iran for the attacks on Norwegian and Japanese oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, described those and other recent incidents as “very minor.”

Trump’s comments came in an interview with Time magazine Monday.

In the interview, Trump cast doubt about going to war to protect international oil supplies; however, he said he might take military action to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.

“I would certainly go over nuclear weapons,” Trump said when asked what moves would lead him to consider going to war with Iran, “and I would keep the other a question mark.”

Asked about the recent attacks on oil tankers, he described those as limited and said: “So far, it’s been very minor.”

He noted the Gulf of Oman is less important to the United States than it once was.

“Other places get such vast amounts of oil there,” Trump said. “We get very little. We have made tremendous progress in the last two and a half years in energy. And when the pipelines get built, we’re now an exporter of energy.”

And Trump maintained Iran has adopted a less hostile posture toward the U.S. since he took office.

Meanwhile, Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, citing concerns about a threat from Iran, said Monday 1,000 more troops will be deployed to the Middle East for what he said were “defensive purposes.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Middle school principal Jamaal Bowman has announced his intention to run against Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., the head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the second liberal to challenge the congressman this year.

“I’m inspired by all of the new lifestyles injected into Congress and the new ideas,” Bowman, who helped found New York’s Cornerstone Academy for Social Action, told The New York Times.

“I’ve been in education now for 20 years, spending most of my years in the Bronx, working with families who are struggling, are in many different areas from poverty, health care, mental health issues, asthma from pollution and so on,” he added. “Many of their struggles come from policy that begins in Washington.”

Engel, who has served 16 terms in the House, also faces teacher Andom Ghebreghiorgis, who is running on a progressive platform as well, vowing to support “Medicare for all,” the Green New Deal and improvements to public education. But Bowman has the endorsement of the group Justice Democrats, which helped propel Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to victory over the fourth-ranked Democrat in the House at the time.

“As someone who has built a public school from the ground up and served his community and students for many years, we are so honored to endorse Jamaal Bowman for Congress,” said Alexandra Rojas, the Justice Democrats’ executive director. “Our grass-roots movement shocked the country last year with A.O.C.’s upset victory, and we are prepared to do it again in New York’s 16th District.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Middle school principal Jamaal Bowman has announced his intention to run against Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., the head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the second liberal to challenge the congressman this year.

“I’m inspired by all of the new lifestyles injected into Congress and the new ideas,” Bowman, who helped found New York’s Cornerstone Academy for Social Action, told The New York Times.

“I’ve been in education now for 20 years, spending most of my years in the Bronx, working with families who are struggling, are in many different areas from poverty, health care, mental health issues, asthma from pollution and so on,” he added. “Many of their struggles come from policy that begins in Washington.”

Engel, who has served 16 terms in the House, also faces teacher Andom Ghebreghiorgis, who is running on a progressive platform as well, vowing to support “Medicare for all,” the Green New Deal and improvements to public education. But Bowman has the endorsement of the group Justice Democrats, which helped propel Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to victory over the fourth-ranked Democrat in the House at the time.

“As someone who has built a public school from the ground up and served his community and students for many years, we are so honored to endorse Jamaal Bowman for Congress,” said Alexandra Rojas, the Justice Democrats’ executive director. “Our grass-roots movement shocked the country last year with A.O.C.’s upset victory, and we are prepared to do it again in New York’s 16th District.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Time is running out for special counsel Robert Mueller to appear before Congress and testify and waiting until August to hear from him might be too late, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said Tuesday.

“The best way to get a witness to testify is if you can get them to testify voluntarily, and particularly I think with someone like Bob Mueller making an appeal to his patriotism, a sense of duty is the right way to go,” the House Intelligence Committee chairman told CNN’s “New Day.” “At the end of the day, he needs to come testify.”

But if an agreement cannot be reached to bring Mueller in, “then we’ll have to use a subpoena,” the congressman said.

Meanwhile, there has been a “slow increase” in the number of House Democrats coming out in favor of impeaching President Donald Trump, Schiff said, while warning even if an inquiry would be announced tomorrow, things will not change dramatically when it comes to witness testimony.

“If anything, the administration is going to dig in deeper,” Schiff said. “Whether we’re going to get to critical mass or not, I don’t know. It may depend on how the investigation proceeds.”

He also commented on reports intelligence officers did not tell Trump about efforts they were taking to conduct cyber attacks on Russia.

“If it’s true that the intelligence agencies or the Cabinet members are keeping things from the president because they can’t rely on him to keep his mouth shut when it comes to discussing that with the Russians or with others, it’s a real problem, because we have a president who’s not well-informed,” Schiff said.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Rep. Mike Turner Tuesday questioned President Donald Trump’s decision to tweet about his plans to deport millions of undocumented immigrants starting next week and said the president will have to work within the law when carrying out his plan.

“I don’t believe we should conduct any policy by tweets, so it’s really hard to take tweets themselves and do any analysis of them,” the Ohio Republican told CNN’s “New Day.” “One thing we know, the president of the United States has to enforce the law…we have to look at what laws will be executed and how they’ll be executed.”

There are no details, said Turner, as that can’t be ascertained from a tweet, but there has been broad support of addressing the Dreamer issue.

“This is going to take bipartisan work, and we haven’t seen that with (House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s unwillingness,” said Turner. “You can’t have an open border and have immigration reform.”

Turner also discussed the growing situation with Iran and said he believes a call from Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., call for a retaliatory strike from the United States “incredibly premature.”

“We already know in the area Iran has been very active through proxies and through, you know, destabilizing actions both through Hezbollah and Syria and Iraq,” said Turner. “I think if you look at the escalation of hostilities from Iran, then we need to have a measured response, but Iran needs to know we will protect our allies. This is going to be a heated debate in Congress. Just last week a motion was brought to prohibit (Trump) from taking military action with Iran. It didn’t address the issue we have to protect our allies.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Sen. Amy Klobuchar Tuesday outlined an ambitious plan for how she’d spend her first 100 days if elected president of the United States, including a call for a bold infrastructure plan that she says would be her key budget priority.

“There are so many things we can do right away,” the Minnesota Democrat and presidential candidate told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “My idea is that I’ve got 100 bills that have passed since I’ve been in the Senate and then a hundred bills we can do in the first 100 days and I truly believe these are things we can do.”

CNN has obtained an 18-page list of Klobuchar’s goals, showing that on day one, she’d bring the United States back into the International Paris Climate agreement and that she’d work to ensure the United States “maintains global leadership” while addressing the climate crisis.

She also said in the plan that she’ll “immediately” suspend efforts by the Trump administration to eliminate Obamacare protections for people with pre-existing conditions and that she wants to allow for the safe importation of prescription drugs from safe nations such as Canada.

On Tuesday, Klobuchar told MSNBC that Congress would not be needed to return the United States to the climate agreement, or to “bring back the clean power rules that have been negotiated for years that the president left on the cutting room floor.”

Further, as president, she said she can also stop the action to throw out “Dreamers” and to eject people who are in the United States through legal temporary status.

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump criticized European Central Bank President Mario Draghi’s comments Tuesday that further monetary policy changes may be needed by the ECB, saying that would spark unfair European competition against the United States.

“Mario Draghi just announced more stimulus could come, which immediately dropped the Euro against the Dollar, making it unfairly easier for them to compete against the USA. They have been getting away with this for years, along with China and others,” Trump said on Twitter.

Draghi said the ECB might may need to cut interest rates or purchase assets if inflation in the euro zone continued to lag its target range.

“In the absence of improvement, such that the sustained return of inflation to our aim is threatened, additional stimulus will be required,” Draghi told the ECB’s annual conference in Sintra, Portugal.

The comments sent the euro down by a quarter of a percent against the U.S. dollar while stocks erased early losses and bond yields fell further.

Trump has repeatedly criticized currency manipulation by other countries with which the United States has large trade deficits, saying weaker currencies abroad give trading partners an unfair advantage and hurts American workers.

If a country’s currency is artificially low, its exports are more competitive. Higher U.S. interest rates would generally increase the value of the dollar, making U.S. exports more expensive.

Earlier in June, Trump criticized China, with which he is engaged in a trade spat, for devaluing its currency and said it created an uneven playing field for commerce.

He made similar criticisms of Russia and China in April, remarks that Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said were “a warning shot at China and Russia about devaluation.”

Trump has been critical of the U.S. Federal Reserve for its recent interest rate increases and has pressed the independent central bank to cut rates at a policy meeting this week. But the Fed is expected to leave borrowing costs unchanged on Wednesday.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, says she misspoke when she said Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump, would be removed from her post, WHO-TV reports.

Ernst had claimed an interview on the Des Moines, Iowa, television station that Conway was losing her job – just two days after Trump said he would ignore a recommendation from the Office of Special Counsel to fire the White House adviser.

The special counsel’s office said Conway had violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal workers from using their official posts to influence an election.

“Well obviously there has been a commission that has decided that’s not appropriate, so she is being removed from that position,” Ernst said. “But we certainly want to be working towards the good of all Americans and supporting, obviously she wants to support the president’s initiative. She is an adviser, or was an adviser, but you know she used her position definitely.”

Just two days earlier, Trump told television’s “Fox & Friends“: “I’m not going to fire (Conway). I think she’s a tremendous person, a tremendous spokesperson; she’s loyal, she’s a great person.”

WHO-TV reported that a spokesman for Ernst later explained that she misspoke when she said Conway was leaving her position,

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump says the U.S. will soon begin removing millions of people living in the country illegally.

In a pair of tweets Monday night, the eve of formally announcing his re-election bid, Trump said that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would next week “begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States.”

“They will be removed as fast as they come in,” he wrote.

He also slammed Democrat inaction on the border crisis, wrirting that the “only ones who won’t do anything are the Democrats in Congress. They must vote to get rid of the loopholes, and fix asylum! If so, Border Crisis will end quickly!”

An administration official said the effort would focus on the more than 1 million people who have been issued final deportation orders by federal judges but remain at large in the country. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to explain the president’s tweets.

It is unusual for law enforcement agencies to announce raids before they take place. Some in Trump’s administration believe that decisive shows of force — like mass arrests — can serve as effective deterrents, sending a message to those considering making the journey to the U.S. that it’s not worth coming.

Trump has threatened a series of increasingly drastic actions as he has tried to stem the flow of Central American migrants crossing the southern border, which has risen dramatically on his watch. He recently dropped a threat to slap tariffs on Mexico after the country agreed to dispatch its national guard and step-up coordination and enforcement efforts.

A senior Mexican official said Monday that, three weeks ago, about 4,200 migrants were arriving at the U.S. border daily. Now that number has dropped to about 2,600.

Immigration was a central theme of Trump’s 2016 campaign and he is expected to hammer it as he tries to fire up his base heading into the 2020 campaign.

Trump will formally launch his re-election bid Tuesday night at a rally in Orlando, Florida — a state that is crucial to his path back to the White House.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Freshman U.S. Rep. Katie Porter on Monday threw her support behind an impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump, adding another Democratic lawmaker to those clamoring for the move.

The congresswoman from Irvine, California, announced her decision in a video statement. About 60 other lawmakers support opening an inquiry, a far cry from a majority in the 435-seat House.

Porter said she believes Congress must investigate after special counsel Robert Mueller said he couldn’t exonerate Trump of obstruction of justice in a probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and didn’t have the option to indict a sitting president.

“I cannot with a clean conscience ignore my duty to defend the Constitution. I can’t claim to be committed to rooting out corruption and putting people over politics and then not apply those same principles and standards in all of the work I do,” Porter said.

She called out the administration for ignoring subpoenas and directing officials to disregard summons to testify before Congress.

“The administration has refused to respect the rule of law,” Porter said. “The question is not whether a crisis is in our midst but rather whether we choose to fight against it.”

Porter, a consumer protection lawyer and law professor at the University of California, Irvine, was elected last year in one of several contested races that put all the traditionally Republican districts in Orange County under Democratic control amid Trump’s low approval ratings.

But Republicans still outnumber Democrats in her district covering a swath of eastern Orange County and hold a slight edge in the county as a whole. Porter already has a number of Republican challengers seeking her seat in 2020.

Fred Whitaker, chairman of the Orange County Republican Party, called Porter “too far left” for her district and “out of touch.”

“She doesn’t have the support of her district. She doesn’t even have the support of Speaker Pelosi,” Whitaker said.

“Most people think we should accept the Mueller report and move forward,” he said.

In Porter’s district, about 30.8 percent of registered voters are Democrats and 35.7 percent are Republicans, according to the county registrar.

In a May survey by the Public Policy Institute of California, about 38 percent of respondents in Orange and San Diego counties said they approved of the way Trump was handling his job as president.

At a town hall in Orange County earlier this month, Porter said she didn’t seek election to impeach Trump but she felt the refusal to comply with subpoenas was a turning point and wouldn’t refrain from doing so if the time came.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Many voters in the congressional district represented by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., do not support her and are ready to vote her out in 2020, a new poll found.

The Stop the AOC PAC connected with more than 2,200 voters in New York District 14 for their feedback about the 29-year-old. The key findings:

  • 51% hold an unfavorable opinion of her, while just 21% hold a favorable opinion.
  • 36% support Amazon, which pulled out of a planned East Coast headquarters deal in Ocasio-Cortez’s district after the junior lawmaker led a campaign opposing the company despite its promise to add thousands of jobs.
  • 9% do not support Amazon and 55% are unsure.
  • 33% said Ocasio-Cortez and others did not have the public’s best interest in mind by opposing Amazon. 11% said the opposite.
  • 33% pledged to vote against Ocasio-Cortez in 2020, with 13% not pledging to do so. 53% were unsure.

Ocasio-Cortez is a socialist and routinely clashes with Republicans and her other critics.

Source: NewsMax Politics

New York state lawmakers passed a bill Monday granting driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo is expected to sign it.

A Democratic-controlled state Senate passed the bill, though all six lawmakers from Long Island nixed it over concerns it could prove politically costly in their swing districts, the New York Post reported.

“We are treating the people who have broken our law, who are criminals [like law-abiding citizens],” GOP state Sen. Thomas O’Mara raged, the Post reported. “This legislation will lead to more illegal immigration.”

The state Assembly passed the bill last week. It now goes to the governor for his signature.

Cuomo tossed a last-minute curveball, asking the state’s Solicitor General Barbara Underwood to review the measure for possible safety concerns — threatening to veto it if he did not like her assessment, the Post noted. New York’s Attorney General Tish James, however, declared the bill legally sound.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump on Monday said there was “something weird” happening at Fox News following a poll showing him trailing Democratic contenders Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg.

“Polls are always bad for me,” Trump tweeted. “They were against Crooked Hillary also. Something weird going on at Fox. Our polls show us leading in all 17 Swing States.”

The poll, released Sunday, surveyed 1,001 registered voters on Trump’s approval rating (45%) disapproval rating (53%) and who should be picked as the Democratic nominee (Biden with 32%).

Voters were also asked who they would pick if the 2020 presidential elections were held today, and answered:

  • Former Vice President Biden (49%) over Trump (39%)
  • Sen. Sanders of Vermont (49%) over Trump (40%)
  • Sen. Harris of California (42%) over Trump (40%)
  • Sen. Warren of Massachusetts (43%) over Trump (41%)
  • South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Buttigieg (41%) over Trump (40%)

Trump in his tweet also slammed Fox News host Bret Baier for suggesting he spent “30 hours with @abcnews.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

More than a dozen people broke State Department rules in handling former Secretary Hillary Clinton’s emails, resulting in 23 violations and seven infractions of security protocols, multiple reports stated.

The information came in a letter to Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, who oversees the security review, Fox News reported.

According to the Washington Times, some of the 15 people got write-ups placed in their security files at the department that could affect future attempts to gain security clearances, the department said.

“The department considers and violation of security policies to be a serious matter,” wrote Mary Elizabeth Taylor, assistance secretary for legislative affairs.

The State Department, calling the matter “serious,” said it expected to conclude the investigation by Sept. 1, Fox News reported.

Taylor wrote that disciplinary consequences were pending.

“In every instance in which the Department found an individual to be culpable of a valid security violation or three or more infractions, the Department forwarded the outcome to the Bureau of Diplomatic Security’s Office of Personnel Security and Suitability (DS/PSS), to be placed in the individuals’ official security file,” Taylor wrote. 

“This referral occurred whether or not the individual was currently employed with the Department of State and such security files are kept indefinitely,” Taylor added. “Consistent with the referral policy, for individuals who were still employed with the Department at the time of adjudication, the Department referred all valid security violations or multiple infractions to the Bureau of Human Resources.”

The State Department declined to release the names of the employees.

Investigations in 2016 found nearly two dozen emails Clinton sent or received contained top secret information, while more than 2,000 others contained classified information, the Washington Times noted.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Preliminary figures show falling numbers of migrant families were crossing the southern border illegally in recent weeks, the Washington Post reported Monday.

Customs and Border Protection data shows more than 85,000 “family unit” members at the border in May, an average of nearly 2,800 per day. That number has declined about 13% since the beginning of June, the Post reported.

Overall, U.S. officials say they are expecting a decline of 15-20% decline in border arrests from May, when authorities detained more than 144,000 and migration levels reached their highest point since 2006, the Post reported.

The time frame of the decline corresponds with the period that President Donald Trump threatened to impose tariffs on Mexico and the government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador agreed to a crackdown to avoid the penalty, the Post noted.

“We are seeing initial actions and we are seeing some signs they’re having an impact,” an unnamed U.S. official told the Post. “But I think it’s still too early to tell.”

Border arrests typically surge in the spring, when demand for U.S. farm labor grows, then subside during peak summer months, the Post reported.

For example, border arrested dropped 17% from May 2018 to June 2018, the Post reported.

If the June arrest numbers continue to decline, it would be the first month this year that CBP has notched a drop in enforcement actions.

Source: NewsMax Politics

The Pentagon released new color photos and a timeline to bolster its charge Iran was behind an attack on two commercial oil tankers last week in the Gulf of Oman, multiple news outlets reported Monday.

The images released by U.S. Central Command show an Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Ghashti-class patrol boat alongside the Kokuka Courageous during, and after, the removal of an unexploded mine that had been left on the ship’s hull, ABC News reported.

There are also close-up photos showing the ring around which magnets had attached the mine to the ship, as well as composite residue from the mine still on the ship’s hull. 

Additional photos from the Pentagon show the holes caused to the two commercial tankers by the mines, ABC News reported.

“Iran is responsible for the attack based on video evidence and the resources and proficiency needed to quickly remove the unexploded limpet mine,” according to a statement accompanying the photos, Bloomberg news reported.

According to Bloomberg, the Pentagon took the unusual step of identifying the source of the imagery — a Navy MH-60R surveillance helicopter that can fly and hover as it gathers imagery at lower altitudes than drones or maritime patrol craft.

One of the officials briefing reporters said damage to the ships did not appear to have been caused by a torpedo because those typically strike below the water line, unlike the mines placed above the water line in last Thursday’s attack, Bloomberg reported.

In a tweet with pictures, Defense One reporter Ben Watson wrote: “This hardly appears to be an attempt to sink the tanker; rather a nuisance attack, and an apparently quite sloppy one undertaken with multiple U.S. surveillance assets in the area.”

Although the U.K., Saudi Arabia, and Israel have backed the Trump administration’s assessment Iran’s Revolutionary Guard was behind the attacks, domestic critics and some U.S. allies — including Germany and Japan — have demanded more evidence.

Last Friday, U.S. Central Command released a grainy video showing what it claimed to be a crew aboard an Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps boat removing an unexploded mine left on the ship’s hull.

“The German foreign minister has seen a great deal more than just that video,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “He will continue to see more.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

The fatal shooting of a black man by a police officer in the Indiana city where Pete Buttigieg is mayor presents both political peril for a presidential candidate who has struggled to connect with minority voters and an opportunity to show leadership on issues of race and policing that are critical — and personal — for much of the Democratic primary electorate.

Buttigieg on Monday canceled several days of campaign events after returning to South Bend, where he spent the day meeting with community members and faith leaders following the shooting of 54-year-old Eric Jack Logan.

Logan died after he was shot once in the abdomen from the front by a white officer who responded to a call about a suspicious person going through cars about 3:30 a.m. Sunday, St. Joseph County Prosecutor Ken Cotter said Monday.

Sgt. Ryan O’Neill spotted the man, later identified as Logan, leaning inside a car, Cotter said. When O’Neill confronted him, Logan allegedly approached the officer with a 6 to 8-inch long knife raised over his head. That’s when Cotter said the officer fired twice, with the other shot hitting a car door.

In a matter of months, Buttigieg has gone from a relatively obscure 37-year-old mayor to the top tier of a crowded Democratic presidential field. His handling of the shooting could test his ability to navigate the demands of the campaign trail while still performing his day job.

“I did consider it important to be here to have these conversations,” Buttigieg said in South Bend on Sunday after cutting short a presidential campaign trip. “I know that whenever an incident like this happens, there is tremendous hurt that can come about. That the city will be hurting.”

Asked by a reporter how the shooting might affect his presidential bid, Buttigieg declined to answer, saying, “Right now I’m here as mayor.”

The white mayor has had a sometimes-tense relationship with the black community dating back to his first term in office, when he fired the city’s first black police chief. He has also faced criticism for his handling of police misconduct cases, including a case involving an officer who was twice disciplined for civil rights violations but not fired, and for not having a police department that reflects South Bend’s diversity. Roughly 40% of the city’s residents are black or Hispanic; the department is almost 90% white.

Buttigieg said Sunday that he was sometimes hesitant to speak publicly after shootings involving police earlier in his time as mayor and that he heard from the black community that he needed to be more open and transparent.

“One of the reasons we’re communicating up front right now is because of lessons learned from members of the community,” he said.

Logan’s wife, Shafonia Logan, told reporters after meeting with the police chief Sunday night that she had many questions about what happened to her husband of 13 years. She said her husband called her early Sunday asking her to pick him up, as he was out with friends, but she was in bed, and he replied that he would walk to his mother’s house a few minutes away.

“I don’t know what happened or what they say — he was breaking into a car?” she said. “Was that justified for him to shoot and kill him about breaking in a car?”

Shafonia Logan said that she never knew her husband to carry a knife or a gun and that he was afraid of police officers. She also questioned why her husband was taken to a hospital in a police car rather than in an ambulance.

She said her husband had five children from other relationships.

Logan was released from prison in June 2018 after serving a sentence for a 2009 St. Joseph County conviction on three felony counts of dealing cocaine or narcotics, according to Indiana Department of Correction records. He had other convictions since 1988 on drug possession and handgun violation charges.

Cotter said no police video exists of the confrontation as the officer’s dash and body cameras weren’t automatically activated because he was driving slowly without his emergency lights on while looking through a parking lot.

DeRay McKesson, who began protesting the police killings of black men in 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri, and has advocated for reforms addressing policing and communities of color, also said there are many questions left to be answered. He said that Buttigieg made the right choice to leave the campaign trail.

“We will all be watching to see how Buttigieg deals with this latest case of a police officer killing a citizen,” McKesson said. “He is still the mayor of South Bend. In leaving the campaign trail to be the leader he was elected to be, we will get perhaps the best glimpse into how he makes decisions under public pressure.”

Buttigieg initially canceled Monday campaign events in New York then later canceled a Tuesday trip to California, where he had a series of fundraisers scheduled, including one at the home of director and producer Ryan Murphy and his husband.

The candidate has proved to be a fundraising juggernaut, raising more than $7 million in April alone, according to a person close to the campaign who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss financial details.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Special counsel Robert Mueller must testify before Congress on the contents of his report, Sen. Richard Blumenthal told CNN’s “New Day” on Monday.

“I think he has to understand that part of his job as special counsel is to appear before congressional committees,” the Connecticut Democrat said. “I hope he will do it voluntarily. If not, a subpoena may be necessary. Robert Mueller wrote the book and it is a powerful 450-page description, obstruction and a threat by the Russians. Most Americans won’t read the book, they have to see the movie and Robert Mueller is the movie.”

Blumenthal stressed that “The key is accountability and Bob Mueller is the absolutely critical witness to holding the president accountable for his lawbreaking.”

The senator also commented on his party’s intention in the House to call those mentioned in the Mueller report who have not worked in the White House and therefore cannot claim executive privilege, such as former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and political adviser Chris Christie.

“They have no claim of executive privilege,” Blumenthal said. “But I’d argue that those individuals who worked in the White House previously like [former White House Counsel Don] McGahn and some of the others also lack a viable claim of executive privilege and it will be rejected by the courts.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump’s supporters have already begun lining up to get into the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida, where Trump is set to officially announce his re-election campaign Tuesday evening, WKMG ClickOrlando reports.

Eight Trump supporters began camping out by the center on Monday morning. The first, Gary Beck of Panama City, arrived at 2:30 a.m., more than 40 hours before the rally is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. on Tuesday.

“There’s going to be a bunch of people, and it’s going to be pretty intense,” Beck said. “The electricity is going to be high. It’s time for America to get back on its feet and be made better than it’s ever been before.”

Trump’s Orlando rally will be his first campaign event in the city since he concluded his presidential campaign there at the Central Florida Fairgrounds. He promoted his upcoming rally on Twitter Monday morning.

“Big Rally tomorrow night in Orlando, Florida, looks to be setting records,” he wrote. “We are building large movie screens outside to take care of everybody. Over 100,000 requests. Our Country is doing great, far beyond what the haters & losers thought possible – and it will only get better!”

The Amway Center holds 20,000 people. Trump 2020 campaign National Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany told Florida Today that the rally is “first-come, first serve,” and “a ticket doesn’t necessarily guarantee entry.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Iran is a “failing country” that’s lashing out and most likely was behind the attacks on a pair of oil tankers last week, despite the “Russian trolls on Twitter” trying to convince people otherwise, Rep. Adam Kinzinger said Monday.

“I think when it comes to Russia, whatever they say, usually the opposite is true,” the Illinois Republican told Fox News’ Dana Perino. “If we have evidence and I’m sure that we do, I’ve heard a lot of it exists, and we know it’s Iran, we need to accept that because that’s obviously the case…I think if we put this redline down that says even if we don’t respond to the last two attacks, this cannot keep going.”

The bottom line is that Iran is lashing out, as it has just one-tenth of the oil exports it once had, said Kinzinger, and it has “disrupted the international order.”

“We are seeing investments in other countries,” said Kinzinger. “That’s actually receded a lot, but I think right now it’s going to take patience to understand they are obviously very desperate. They don’t want to provoke us into military action.”

However, Kinzinger said he doesn’t necessarily think President Donald Trump must come to Congress to have action approved.

“I don’t think every military action needs to come to Congress because nothing would ever get done,” he said.

Kinzinger also responded to a report in The New York Times that the U.S. military has been putting malware into Russian systems.

“I think we are stepping up our attacks on Russia and we should (after) this disinformation campaign and the 2016 election,” said Kinzinger. “I don’t know who linked the story; it’s more in the classified space. I think it’s irresponsible.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo should be informing President Donald Trump that it would be wrong to take information from a foreign government about a political rival, Assistant House Speaker Ben Ray Lujan said Monday.

“He should be saying ‘Mr. President, that’s wrong, that’s illegal, the Constitution doesn’t allow it, your oath of office doesn’t allow it,'” the New Mexico Democrat told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” while discussing the president’s comments that he’d listen if someone was giving him political dirt.

“It’s absolutely concerning that if we believe were given to the campaign from the Russians in the next election that he would gladly accept them,” said Lujan.

He added that he’s become divided on whether impeachment proceedings could harm Democrats in 2020, as every day, Trump “throws one more brick into the backpack” about why they should be done.

“I think what he said over the weekend would probably be a stand-alone charge all by itself, but I think increasingly the argument has to be, is there some good constitutional reason to do this, even if the Senate, for its own reasons, will never convict,” said Lujan.

According to a new poll, Americans remain divided over whether Trump should be impeached, but Lujan said it’s clear people nationwide want investigations to continue into him and his administration. He noted that there are 12 House committees holding oversight investigations, but not only about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report but also about the “sabotage of the Affordable Care Act” and other Trump actions.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Only a few days after the Office of Special Counsel said that White House counselor Kellyanne Conway should be fired for violating the Hatch Act, House Democrats Ted Lieu and Don Breyer have requested senior White House adviser Jared Kushner be investigated as well, TPM reported.

“Under the Hatch Act, federal employees are prohibited from fundraising for political candidates,” the congressmen wrote to OSC, a federal watchdog agency. “Alarmingly, recent media reports indicate that Mr. Kushner is nonetheless taking a direct role in raising funds for the re-election campaign of President Donald Trump.”

Trump said he would not abide by OSC’s recommendation to fire Conway even after OSC head Henry Kerner said last week that Conway’s “actions erode the principal foundation of our democratic system – the rule of law,” according to The Hill.

Kerner said this was so because as a highly visible member of the administration, Conway’s “violations, if left unpunished, would send a message to all federal employees that they need not abide by the Hatch Act’s restrictions.”

Beyer and Lieu, in their letter, stressed that “The larger context of Trump administration officials failing to comply, being previously reprimanded by OSC, and, in some cases, openly flouting Hatch Act requirements also argues against giving senior administration officials benefit of the doubt when considering potential violations.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump’s administration on Monday announced plans to permanently reprogram hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, after Trump blasted the three countries because thousands of their citizens had sought asylum at the U.S. border with Mexico.

Congressional aides said the administration told them it would reprogram $370 million in aid to Central America that lawmakers had approved for fiscal 2018, and suspend an additional $180 million Congress had approved for fiscal 2017.

Source: NewsMax Politics

There are many more questions to be asked about how far the origins of the Russia investigation went to protect 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, and how much then-President Barack Obama knew, Rep. Doug Collins said Monday.

“Others were saying no, we will never charge her,” the Georgia Republican told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.” “We have (former FBI Director James) Comey preparing the exoneration, then you take the same group, everybody who goes into the Russian investigation, exactly the same people. This was not low-level investigating.”

There are still a few weeks left before the Inspector General’s report will be completed, said Collins, and he believes Democrats are “very concerned” about it.

“They know right now that all they have is to paint the president in a bad light,” said Collins. “What they do know is that the report will come out. You are actually taking on American citizens, using a secret court to do this when you have unverified documents.”

He added that he agrees with President Donald Trump’s contention in an interview last week that Obama had to know about the investigation, as it was “much higher up than just these investigators. We see the influence.”

Collins also discussed the escalating situation with Iran, commenting that the only thing the country agrees with is Trump’s strength.

“That was so disheartening, the Iran deal, which I was firmly against from day one,” said Collins. “Now they say they’re going to break the treaty. They were never really abiding by it to start with.”

Collins also on Monday discussed the immigration and border situation, and accused Democrats of using migrants as “pawns.”

“We have issues that need to be fixed,” said Collins. “We need some humanitarian aid there because they’re coming through in droves. We’ve got to fix the incentive for it.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Two days after the unexpected announcement by Rep. Susan Brooks that she would not seek re-election in Indiana’s 5th District, her fellow Republicans in and out of Congress are still in shock.

Former U.S. Attorney Brooks, 58, had been one of the most visible of the thirteen Republican women in the U.S. House. Brooks, in fact, was perhaps the most vigorous proponent of Republican women running for Congress.

After four terms in, she was a member of the Problem Solvers Caucus, which sought more centrist solutions to issues. Brooks also voted with the Trump Administration on nearly every issue, according to Congressional Quarterly report.

Her announced departure was met with glee by Democrats. Illinois Rep. Cheri Butros, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, told reporters that the decision of Brooks, “who was working hard to recruit women to run for office, underscores the problem Washington Republicans have created for themselves.”

Democrats sent early signals they plan to wage an all-out effort to win the 5th, its solid Republican registration and history notwithstanding. Former State Rep. Christine Hale, the losing Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in 2016, is soon expected to throw her hat in the ring.

Among Republicans, no less than a dozen candidates are mentioned for the open seat. Early reports indicate Brooks was trying to convince her top aide Megan Savage to seek the seat. If she runs, Savage is expected to take the same center-right line as her boss.

Also mentioned is State Sen. John Ruckelshaus, nephew of former Environmental Protection Administrator and onetime Indiana State Rep. William D. Ruckelshaus. John is considered a moderate in the mold of his uncle.

The early conservative favorite appears to be former State Sen. Mike Delph, a self-styled constitutionalist with a strong following among both cultural and economic conservatives. Last year, in a major upset, Delph lost his senate seat to Democrat J.D. Ford.

For now, national Republicans privately voice concern that even if they hold Brooks’ seat and that of Rep. Liz Cheney (who is pondering a Senate bid) in Wyoming, the number of women in the House Republican Caucus could drop below the present 13.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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Source: NewsMax Politics

Most Democratic and independent voters said the Democratic Party’s top priority in the 2020 election was beating President Donald Trump, a new poll conducted on behalf of The Daily Beast found Monday.

Ipsos surveyed hundreds of voters, and found the leading male Democratic candidates hold a 5 percentage point advantage over the two leading female candidates. Additionally, the vast majority of voters said the Democratic Party’s top priority in choosing a candidate is whether they can beat Trump. 

  • 82% said the party’s priority is to nominate someone who can beat Trump.
  • 40% said nominating a woman is not a priority for the party.
  • 38% said nominating a minority candidate is not a priority.
  • 20% said nominating a white man is not a priority.

The survey also found most Democrats and independents, 74%, say they would be comfortable with a female president. But these voters are split over whether a female candidate would have a harder time than a man running against Trump: 39% agree it would be harder, 26% disagree, and 28% neither agree nor disagree.

One-in-five respondents said they agree with the statement women are “less effective in politics than men.”

“Talk about learning the wrong lessons,” Jen Palmieri, a former senior adviser to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign.

“I think Democrats have a lot of trauma about the 2016 outcome and are suspicious that voters have an unease with women candidates,” she said. “But the actual record shows a different story.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

President Donald Trump sent out a tweet Monday insisting he is ahead in surveys against Democratic presidential candidates, even though internal polling by his own re-election campaign showed he is behind former Vice President Joe Biden in several battleground states.

“Only Fake Polls show us behind the Motley Crew,” Trump wrote. “We are looking really good, but it is far too early to be focused on that. Much work to do!”

Trump’s comment came a day after he reportedly fired three pollsters following the leak of the 17-state survey which showed him behind in the race in numerous crucial places, according to Politico.

Trump last week denied the “phony polls” existed, insisting “we are winning in every single state that we’ve polled.”

CNN reported Trump has been angry for several days about the internal polls leaked to the media.

Although his campaign has publicly pushed back against the surveys, saying they are weeks old and do not reflect the current reality, a person familiar with the situation told CNN those denials had less to do with the quality of the polls than about pacifying the president.

Source: NewsMax Politics

There is no way former President Barack Obama did not know people in his administration were investigating and taking actions against then-candidate Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, ex-House Speaker Newt Gingrich said Monday.

“You want to suggest to me that the attorney general has a private meeting with former President (Bill) Clinton on an airplane in Phoenix for, I think, 45 minutes and the current sitting president, Barack Obama, doesn’t know about it?” Gingrich told Fox News’ “Fox & Friends,” while responding to comments Trump had made in an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos.

Gingrich added he does not think Obama would have seen press coverage of the meeting between his attorney general Loretta Lynch and Clinton, during the week when the FBI was going to interview her, without asking Lynch what was going on.

“Barack Obama is a really smart guy,” Gingrich said. “He was also sort of a control freak. Do you think the FBI said ‘oh, we’re going to go get a FISA warrant, a foreign intelligence warrant, in order to investigate an American presidential campaign,’ and nobody thought to mention it to the incumbent president?”

Then-Vice President Joe Biden may or may not have known, added Gingrich, but in his case, “he is so flaky, he might not have known if he knew . . . but Obama is really, really smart, and I think it’s very unlikely, virtually impossible that all this stuff went on and he wasn’t in some way informed.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Faith & Freedom Coalition Chairman Ralph Reed on Monday promised to organize the “most ambitious and far-reaching voter mobilization effort” in evangelical history.

“It’s going to be the most ambitious and far-reaching voter mobilization effort in the history of the conservative faith community, and it’s going to be roughly three times the level of what we did in 2016,” Reed told The Washington Times.

He said that his group plans to register 1 million evangelical voters, knock on 3 million doors and pass out literature to over 117,000 churches. Their hope is to reach about 30 million people.

President Donald Trump won just over 80 percent of evangelical voters in the 2016 election, and recent polls show that three-in-four evangelicals approve of Trump’s job performance.

“They not only are fully supportive of President Trump; they believe that he’s been as strong or better on the core issues that they care about than anybody they’ve ever supported,” Reed said.

 “This constituency delivered in a big way in 2016 and frankly in 2018, but I think we’re really going to have a strong wind at our back in 2020 because there is such a deep reservoir of gratitude, appreciation and affection for this president because of the number of commitments and promises he made that he has kept,” he added.

Source: NewsMax Politics

The 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund will be fully funded, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday, adding that he doesn’t know why comedian Jon Stewart, who has been a vocal advocate for the first responders in the attack, is “all bent out of shape” over the bill.

“Many things in Congress are the last minute,” the Kentucky Republican told Fox News’ “Fox and Friends.” “We will address it again. I don’t know why he is all bent out of shape. We will take care of the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund.”

Stewart on Sunday told “Fox News Sunday” anchor Chris Wallace that McConnell is the “white whale” for the funding measure, and that McConnell always holds out until the last minute.

Stewart was enraged last week when he and first responders appeared before a House hearing to fight for the bill, only to find that several committee members were not in attendance.

“That frequently happens because members have a lot of things going on at the same time,” said McConnell. “It sounds to me like he is looking for some way to take offense. There is no way we won’t address this problem appropriately. We have in the past. We will in the future.”

Also on Monday, McConnell said lawmakers are “anxious” to see what President Donald Trump will recommend on healthcare, but meanwhile, it’s “interesting” to see Democrats walking away from Obamacare in favor of “Medicare for all” plans.

McConnell also defended his comments on allowing a Supreme Court justice to be appointed in 2020, if necessary, even though he refused confirmation for President Barack Obama’s nominee, Merrick Garland.

“You have to go back to 1888 to find last time a Senate from a different party from the president confirmed a vacancy to the Supreme Court that occurred during the presidential election,” he said. “We will still control the Senate next year. If there is a vacancy, we will fill it.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

As President Donald Trump wages his rejection of “fake polling,” results from a media poll in Texas has the president’s re-election as a 50-50 proposition, including 60% of independents saying they would vote for someone else in the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

“The most interesting and more consequential thing, this far out, is that amongst independents, 60% say they will probably or definitely vote for somebody else,” Texas Politics Project pollster Joshua Blank told the Tribune. “Overall, Texas independents tend to be more conservative than liberal and tend to look more like Republicans than like Democrats . . . and things have gotten worse among independents.”

Among all voters in the poll, a combined 50% say they will definitely (39%) or probably (11%) vote for President Trump’s re-election, while another combined 50% say they opposite, they will probably not (7%) or definitely not (43%) vote to re-elect President Trump.

“That 50-50 number encapsulates how divisive Trump is,” the poll’s co-director James Henson told the Tribune.

Texas has long been considered a reliably Republican state, but Democrats have made strides – narrowly losing 2018 midterm races, including former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas, challenge of Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas – therefore putting more emphasis on the independent vote tally in the state.

“As the state becomes more competitive along partisan lines, at the same time it remains polarized, independents matter more,” Henson told the Tribune. “For a long time, we didn’t have any reason to pay attention to them.”

Former Vice President Joe Biden (23%) leads the Democratic primary field by 8 points over O’Rourke (15%) and 

RealClearPolitics has Biden leading President Trump by 2.5 percentage points, albeit mostly within the margin of error.

The University of Texas/Texas Tribune polled 1,200 registered voters over the Internet from May 31-June 9 with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.83 percentage points.

Source: NewsMax Politics

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday he’ll present a freestanding bill next week to allocate money to relieve the humanitarian crisis at the nation’s border after Senate Democrats insisted on stripping the measure from the recently passed supplemental disaster bill.

“Last week or two ago we passed a supplemental (bill) for the floods, storm, damages we had in Puerto Rico, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Iowa, and Nebraska,” the Kentucky Republican told Fox News’ “Fox and Friends.” “In the Senate, we wanted to add to it roughly $5 billion the president requested to deal, not with the wall. but just the humanitarian part of the crisis at the border. The Democrats insisted on stripping it out.”

He said once the bill is brought up as a freestanding measure, it will be seen whether Democrats are truly interested in dealing with the humanitarian crisis at the border.

“What is the objection?” said McConnell. “This is not about the wall, but about the humanitarian crisis. I think it is safe to say the president is getting more cooperation out of Mexico than he is out of congressional Democrats.”

McConnell blamed Democrats’ reluctance on “Trump derangement syndrome.”

“Whatever he is for, they are reflexively against,” said McConnell. “This is humanitarian; this is not, we want to build a wall. We think the president makes a good case for that. This is not what it is about. This is the humanitarian part of the problem, on our side, obviously, of the border.”

Source: NewsMax Politics


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