Lukas Mikelionis

President Trump and first lady Melania Trump landed in Japan on Saturday, kicking off a highly anticipated state visit — with the president to become the first foreign leader to meet Japan’s new Emperor Naruhito.

The trip, which will last through Tuesday, comes amid fears among Japanese political and business leaders that U.S. tariffs on the auto industry will have a crippling effect on the Asian nation’s economy.

Japan enjoys a $70 billion trade surplus with the U.S, while it imports just a fraction of U.S. goods and imposes protective measures against competition from other countries, a source of frustration for Trump, who sees tariffs as a corrective measure.

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, and first lady Melania Trump arrive at the Haneda International Airport Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Tokyo. (Associated Press)

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, and first lady Melania Trump arrive at the Haneda International Airport Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Tokyo. (Associated Press)

TRUMP CHEERS US TROOPS DURING STOP IN ALASKA ON WAY TO MEET JAPAN’S NEW EMPEROR

Japan is expected to use the state visit as a charm offensive to convince Trump to spare the country of the punitive tariffs.

To fulfill this task, Trump is officially the first foreign leader invited to meet with the country’s new Emperor Naruhito, who inherited the throne earlier this month, a fact Trump gleefully acknowledged earlier this week. The emperor will treat Trump to a meeting and host an imperial banquet in Trump’s honor.

“Prime Minister [Shinzo] Abe said to me, very specifically, ‘You are the guest of honor.’ There’s only one guest of honor … I’m the guest of honor at the biggest event that they’ve had in over 200 years,” Trump said this week.

“So it’s a great thing. And we get along very well with Japan. I get along very well with the prime minister.”

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, is greeted by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono, left, on Trump's arrival at the Haneda International Airport Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Tokyo. (Associated Press)

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, is greeted by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono, left, on Trump’s arrival at the Haneda International Airport Saturday, May 25, 2019, in Tokyo. (Associated Press)

But the president’s first stop will be a dinner with business leaders at the U.S. ambassador’s residence in Tokyo after a brief airport welcome.

JAPAN’S TRADE NEGOTIATOR: US WON’T IMPOSE QUOTAS ON AUTOS

On Sunday, Trump and Abe are expected to play golf and then watch a sumo wrestling tournament in front-row seats. Trump previously called the sport “fascinating.”

Only on Monday will the two leaders sit down to talk about trade. A possibility of a trade deal is reportedly on the table, but officials on neither side committed to such goal. (Because of the Japan trip, Trump paid a pre-Memorial Day visit to Arlington National Cemetery on Thursday, to honor America’s war dead.)

The U.S. and Japanese leaders will also discuss the threat from North Korea, an issue that comes in the wake of U.S. national security adviser John Bolton’s comments on Friday that a series of short-range missile tests by North Korea last month was a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

U.S. President Donald Trump, second from left, reviews an honor guard during a welcome ceremony, escorted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Akasaka Palace in Tokyo, Nov. 6, 2017. (Associated Press)

U.S. President Donald Trump, second from left, reviews an honor guard during a welcome ceremony, escorted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Akasaka Palace in Tokyo, Nov. 6, 2017. (Associated Press)

But it remains to be seen whether the celebrations and close relationship between Trump and Abe will be enough to force Washington to reconsider imposing tariffs on Japanese auto exports.

The Trump administration is currently embroiled in a trade war against China over the country’s treatment of American companies.

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Yet the administration has been tough and criticized both Japan and the European Union for, in its view, unfair trade practices that exploit the U.S. economy.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump greeted military personnel in Alaska during a refueling stop on Friday while on his way to Japan for a state visit.

Trump talked with American troops on the tarmac at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, posed for photos and signed caps.

“Nice stop,” he was heard saying while walking across the tarmac.

TRUMP’S JAPAN VISIT TO FOCUS ON PERSONAL TIES, NOT SUBSTANCE

“We’re here in Alaska, we’re on our way to Japan, we’re with our great military. These are great, great future leaders, right?” Trump said in a video posted on Twitter.

“We just got off the plane, I wanted to say hello, and these are tremendous people,” he continued, pointing at the troops. “So thank you very much.”

Trump also met with Gov. Mike Dunleavy during the stop, discussing issues concerning Alaska such regulations affecting Alaska economy.

Trump was set to arrive in Japan on Saturday evening local time, with the president being the first foreign leader to meet Japan’s new emperor, Naruhito.

TRUMP PAYS RESPECT TO MILITARY DEAD AT ARLINGTON AHEAD OF MEMORIAL DAY

President Donald Trump greets troops after landing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson for a refueling stop en route to Japan Friday, May 24, 2019, in Anchorage. (Associated Press)

President Donald Trump greets troops after landing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson for a refueling stop en route to Japan Friday, May 24, 2019, in Anchorage. (Associated Press)

The latest charm offensive from Japan comes amid fears among Japanese leaders that the potential U.S. tariffs on cars could be devastating to the economy.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe likely to use his close relationship with Trump to make sure his country is spared of the tariffs.

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To make that happen, the organizers of the state visit will show Trump the country’s traditions, including meeting the emperor and attending sumo wrestling matches.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Lindsey Graham said “not one Democrat will give a damn” about the documents that could be declassified in relation to the surveillance of the Trump campaign in 2016.

“You’re gonna find out the mentality of the people investigating the president. You’re gonna find out exactly what they did, you’re gonna find out [George] Papadopoulos was not working with the Russians. They knew early on he had no contacts with the Russians,” Graham said during a Friday appearance on “Fox and Friends”.

BARR HAMMERED FOR STATING ‘SPYING DID OCCUR,’ DESPITE CONFIRMATION OF TRUMP TEAM SURVEILLANCE

“The bottom line is there’s gonna be a lot of information about, they were warned about still this is a bad guy you can’t trust him. They blew through every stop sign,” he added.

The senator’s comments came after President Trump on Thursday night issued a memo giving Attorney General William Barr the authority to declassify any documents related to spying on the Trump campaign.

Trump also ordered the intelligence community to cooperate with Barr. The memo read: “The heads of elements of the intelligence community… and the heads of each department or agency that includes an element of the intelligence community shall promptly provide such assistance and information as the Attorney General may request in connection with that review.”

TRUMP GIVES AG BARR AUTHORITY TO DECLASSIFY DOCUMENTS RELATED TO 2016 CAMPAIGN SURVEILLANCE

But Graham believes that while some will find the declassified documents interesting, “not one Democrat will give a damn.” Still, he believes the disclosure will warrant an action to ensure no other presidential campaign gets spied on without a good reason.

“I’m gonna look at all of it to make sure it never happens again,” the senator said. “I want to make sure we have FISA laws that can detect when somebody is giving the court a bunch of garbage.

“I wanna make sure we have rules that you just can’t open up a counterintelligence investigation on a presidential candidate without having a good reason.”

Graham added that that FISA court is important “because the people are out to get us,” but “if you can take the law into your own hands for political purposes, it is not good for democracy.”

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During the same appearance, Graham also fired back at the New Yorker magazine over its portrayal of him – together with Barr and Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell – as someone shining the shoes of Trump.

“If I’m helping the president it is good for the country, because I think I got something to offer to him,” Graham said.

“He is doing a really good job. If you want a strong military you got one. If you want a humming economy you got one. If you want to take on the enemy differently than Obama did – that’s exactly what we are doing.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Former ICE acting director Tom Homan slammed Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood for her “disgusting’ statement that the deaths of children in custody at the border was an “intentional” policy decision.

“It’s a disgusting comment,” Homan told “Fox and Friends” on Friday morning in response to Underwood’s remark during a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Wednesday, which prompted the committee to vote to expunge her comments from the record.

“At this point, with five kids that have died, 5,000 separated from their families, I feel like, and the evidence is really clear, this is intentional,” Underwood said. “It’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration, and it’s cruel and inhumane.”

“At this point, with five kids that have died, 5,000 separated from their families, I feel like, and the evidence is really clear, this is intentional,” Underwood said. “It’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration, and it’s cruel and inhumane.”

— Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood

DEM REBUKED AFTER CALLING CHILD DEATHS ‘INTENTIONAL’ IN FIERY EXCHANGE WITH DHS BOSS

Homan said the Illinois Democrat’s comments were disrespectful to the people of the Border Patrol and ignores the vital and good work the agency does.

“The men and women of border patrol, they didn’t talk about the 4,000 lives they saved last year. They have saved over 4,000 people that were in medical distress when they found them,” he said.

They have saved over 4,000 people that were in medical distress when they found them.”

— Tom Homan

“These men and women of the Border Patrol, they are fathers and mothers and sons and daughters, too. They don’t leave their love for life at the station when they start the shift. They do everything they can to protect these people, so to dishonor them in this way insulting.”

Homan went on to point out that what Underwood’s comments didn’t mention – the Democrats’ failure to address immigration and instead create incentives for migrants to make dangerous illegal crossings into the U.S.

ICE AGAIN SEEKS DETENTION OF MARYLAND TEENS ACCUSED IN MURDER OF 14-YEAR-OLD GIRL

“What she didn’t mention, let’s pull the curtain back on this, when [Fiscal Year 2019] appropriations bill was signed, that committee came together after the government shut down to come up with the budget,” he said, accusing Democrats of failing to take action against parents who use “smuggler organizations” to bring their children into the U.S.

“So she and her party leaders look in the mirror because of their intentional actions they opened the groundswell and now [Unaccompanied Alien Children] are at an all-time high like I said they would be. It was their actions that caused the UACs to come to begin,” he said.

Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., first allowed Underwood’s words to remain on the record, stating that “the language is appropriate and that it should not be taken down.”

The decision eventually led to a vote over whether to take down Underwood’s words from the record. After a 9-7 vote, Underwood’s words were taken down.

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Underwood later took to Twitter to comment on what happened: “For over a year, it’s been clear that policies at the border have harmed the physical and mental health of migrant children.”

“I believe, at this point, failure to change these broken policies based on that knowledge is intentional and unacceptable,” she added.

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Former ICE acting director Tom Homan slammed Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood for her “disgusting’ statement that the deaths of children in custody at the border was an “intentional” policy decision.

“It’s a disgusting comment,” Homan told “Fox and Friends” on Friday morning in response to Underwood’s remark during a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Wednesday, which prompted the committee to vote to expunge her comments from the record.

“At this point, with five kids that have died, 5,000 separated from their families, I feel like, and the evidence is really clear, this is intentional,” Underwood said. “It’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration, and it’s cruel and inhumane.”

“At this point, with five kids that have died, 5,000 separated from their families, I feel like, and the evidence is really clear, this is intentional,” Underwood said. “It’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration, and it’s cruel and inhumane.”

— Democratic Rep. Lauren Underwood

DEM REBUKED AFTER CALLING CHILD DEATHS ‘INTENTIONAL’ IN FIERY EXCHANGE WITH DHS BOSS

Homan said the Illinois Democrat’s comments were disrespectful to the people of the Border Patrol and ignores the vital and good work the agency does.

“The men and women of border patrol, they didn’t talk about the 4,000 lives they saved last year. They have saved over 4,000 people that were in medical distress when they found them,” he said.

They have saved over 4,000 people that were in medical distress when they found them.”

— Tom Homan

“These men and women of the Border Patrol, they are fathers and mothers and sons and daughters, too. They don’t leave their love for life at the station when they start the shift. They do everything they can to protect these people, so to dishonor them in this way insulting.”

Homan went on to point out that what Underwood’s comments didn’t mention – the Democrats’ failure to address immigration and instead create incentives for migrants to make dangerous illegal crossings into the U.S.

ICE AGAIN SEEKS DETENTION OF MARYLAND TEENS ACCUSED IN MURDER OF 14-YEAR-OLD GIRL

“What she didn’t mention, let’s pull the curtain back on this, when [Fiscal Year 2019] appropriations bill was signed, that committee came together after the government shut down to come up with the budget,” he said, accusing Democrats of failing to take action against parents who use “smuggler organizations” to bring their children into the U.S.

“So she and her party leaders look in the mirror because of their intentional actions they opened the groundswell and now [Unaccompanied Alien Children] are at an all-time high like I said they would be. It was their actions that caused the UACs to come to begin,” he said.

Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., first allowed Underwood’s words to remain on the record, stating that “the language is appropriate and that it should not be taken down.”

The decision eventually led to a vote over whether to take down Underwood’s words from the record. After a 9-7 vote, Underwood’s words were taken down.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Underwood later took to Twitter to comment on what happened: “For over a year, it’s been clear that policies at the border have harmed the physical and mental health of migrant children.”

“I believe, at this point, failure to change these broken policies based on that knowledge is intentional and unacceptable,” she added.

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, running to deny President Trump of the Republican Party’s 2020 nomination, admitted this week that voters are just really not interested in a challenger.

Weld officially launched his long-shot bid in April to block Trump’s renomination, saying “There is no greater cause on Earth than to preserve what truly makes America great. I am ready to lead that fight.”

He also called Trump a “one-man crime wave” and urged the president to resign.

BILL WELD OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES LONG-SHOT GOP PRIMARY BID AGAINST TRUMP

But now, Weld is conceding that Republican voters actually approve of Trump and there’s little enthusiasm for anyone in the GOP to seriously challenge the president in 2020 — though he takes credit for cutting into Trump’s support within his own party.

“A primary challenger can, as Pat Buchanan did, help to create that unrest,” Weld told C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers,” referring to the former Nixon speechwriter and conservative commentator who challenged former President George H.W. Bush in the 1992 Republican primaries. Bush survived the challenge but ultimately lost to Democrat  Bill Clinton in the general election.

“A year is a long time. Eighteen months is forever in national politics, and a lot is going on,” Weld continued, asserting that Trump erred this week by telling congressional Democrats he won’t work on an infrastructure bill unless they halt their investigations of him.

“The president is just abdicating his responsibility as president. I think that is so outrageous that I think it’s going to sink in over time in the consciousness of the American people that we can’t have this guy doing this job,” Weld added.

“The president is just abdicating his responsibility as president. I think that is so outrageous that I think it’s going to sink in over time in the consciousness of the American people that we can’t have this guy doing this job.”

— Bill Weld

WELD COULD FACE SCRUTINY ON PARTY LOYALTY, LOBBYING, MORE AMID TRUMP PRIMARY CHALLENGE

Trump has been enjoying near universal approval among Republicans, according to various polls, often getting over 90 percent approval. The president fares worse in general opinion polls, with his approval rating lurking around 40 percent.

Yet Weld isn’t the only Republican thinking about challenging Trump. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, who earned praise from Trump critics, is reportedly considering a bid.

Former Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2016, is “actively thinking about” launching a challenge to Trump, but hasn’t yet made concrete moves.

Weld, meanwhile, has been campaigning in New Hampshire and actually maintains a campaign staff. He told C-SPAN that he will expand his campaign into other states.

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“We’re hiring, we’re staffing up. Within the next couple of weeks I’m going to be in Maryland, in Texas, in California — so we’re starting to travel more broadly,” he said, calling it “the makings for a very serious challenge.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Famed former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger will mark his 96th birthday Monday, but he hasn’t retired from sharing his insights on global affairs.

At a gathering in Washington last week, Kissinger spoke about the Trump administration’s upcoming Middle East peace plan, dubbed the “Deal of the Century.”

Other veteran diplomats in attendance included national security adviser John Bolton and former Israeli ambassador Zalman Shoval.

TRUMP MIDDLE EAST ENVOY JASON GREENBLATT: PEACE PLAN IS WEEKS AWAY

Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger addresses the Senate Armed Services Committee, Jan. 25, 2018, with former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz in the background. (Associated Press)

Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger addresses the Senate Armed Services Committee, Jan. 25, 2018, with former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz in the background. (Associated Press)

Both Kissinger and Shoval reportedly spoke about the Middle East peace plan, set to be unveiled in Bahrain in June.

Kissinger — who served as secretary of state and national security adviser under presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford — went on to praise Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, saying he “correctly analyzes the situation.”

“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu correctly analyzes the situation.”

— Henry Kissinger

The first part of the Trump plan, which has been two years in the making, will be revealed June 25-26 during a conference that will bring together government and business leaders from around the world in a bid to increase investment in the Palestinian economy.

The conference won’t be addressing the most contentious parts of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians — such as borders, the status of Jerusalem, Palestinian refugees and Israel’s security.

KUSHNER: MIDDLE EAST PEACE PLAN TO BE UNVEILED AFTER RAMADAN

In a statement with Bahrain, the White House said the June workshop will give government, civil and business leaders a chance to gather support for economic initiatives that could be possible with a peace agreement.

The U.S. hopes Arab countries will invest in Palestinian territories, fix crumbling infrastructure and support other industrial projects in an effort to convince the leadership to accept the peace plan.

“The Palestinian people, along with all people in the Middle East, deserve a future with dignity and the opportunity to better their lives,” Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, said in a statement Sunday.

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“Economic progress can only be achieved with a solid economic vision and if the core political issues are resolved.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Retired four-star Gen. Jack Keane says sending thousands of troops to the Middle East amid tensions with Iran would be both offensive and defensive in nature, with the Trump administration seeking to force Iran to the negotiating table.

Keane, a Fox News senior strategic analyst, said Thursday on “America’s Newsroom” that the “initial build-up of our forces” in the region, including a carrier strike group, Patriot missiles, additional forces and bombers, was all about deterrence.

PENTAGON WEIGHS REQUESTING SEVERAL THOUSAND MORE TROOPS IN MIDEAST AMID IRAN TENSIONS: OFFICIAL

“Making certain that the Iranians really get the message that based on intelligence we thought they were going to have an unprovoked attack on our forces” Keane said.

But the potential plan to send between 5,000 and 10,000 more American troops to the region to beef up the existing forces is now all “about a response if [the Iranians] do” attack the U.S.

“I think what we’re probably looking at is increased offensive missile capability to be able to conduct cruise missiles from submarines and surface ships and also likely some additional missile defense capability to protect our facilities,” Keane said.

“I think what we’re probably looking at is increased offensive missile capability to be able to conduct cruise missiles from submarines and surface ships and also likely some additional missile defense capability to protect our facilities.”

— Retired four-star Gen. Jack Keane

The Pentagon will present plans to the White House, which may also include Patriot missile batteries and naval ships, according to U.S. officials. No decision has been made, and it was not clear if the White House would give its blessing.

GEN. JACK KEANE: IRAN IS TRYING TO DESTABILIZE THE MIDDLE EAST, HAS ‘POLITICAL AND MILITARY ALLIANCE’ WITH RUSSIA

Tensions between Washington and Tehran came to a head after President Trump ordered warships and bombers to the Middle East earlier this month to counter unspecified threats to U.S. interests. In addition, all non-essential U.S. staff at the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Iraq were ordered to leave following a surprise visit by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The general went on to state that the possible extra forces would be both an offensive and defensive move against the Iranian threat.

“It’s largely defensive in the sense that we want to protect our facilities and that’s what the return of the forces is about,” he said, adding that “it’s also offensive because if they do conduct an unprovoked attack, we’ll have to respond to that and that is what this capability is really all about.”

“It’s largely defensive in the sense that we want to protect our facilities and that’s what the return of the forces is about. But it’s also offensive because if they do conduct an unprovoked attack we’ll have to respond to that and that is what this capability is really all about.”

— Retired four-star Gen. Jack Keane

Yet the ultimate goal, Keane says, is about forcing Iran to restart the negotiations and find a “political solution,” pointing to the Trump administration’s pressure on the regime that made a significant impact on the country’s economy.

“The economy is in the tank. Inflation up 37 percent, the economy contracted 6 percent. This is notable. Power shortages, routinely, food shortages. Civil unrest growing in the country,” Keane said.

“However, all of those pressures we put on the Iranians, their behavior in terms of what they’re doing in Lebanon, Syria, encroaching on Israel, Yemen as well, that has not changed yet.”

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He added: “But they certainly feel the pressure. Remember where we’re going with this. We’re going to a political solution is what this administration is trying to achieve. Get Iran back to the negotiating table and work out a better deal.”

Fox News’ Louis Casiano, Jennifer Griffin contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

MSNBC host Joe Scarborough slammed President Trump as the “worst dealmaker that’s ever sat in the presidential office” after the president cut short meeting on infrastructure over Democrats’ accusations that he’s “engaged in a cover-up” regarding the Russia probe.

Scarborough made the comment after Trump demanded on Wednesday that Democrats halt what he called their “phony investigations” before he negotiates with them on issues like infrastructure.

TRUMP DEMANDS END TO ‘PHONY INVESTIGATIONS’ IN FIERY ROSE GARDEN STATEMENT, AFTER MEETING WITH DEMS CUT SHORT

“I know that he acts in such bad faith that it’s so ironic that the guy that wrote ‘The Art of the Deal’ is not only incapable of making a deal, but he does it in such bad faith,” Scarborough said during a Thursday morning broadcast of “Morning Joe”.

“Of course I remember back during the immigration plan that they were going to come up with a big deal. Donald Trump sat at the table and lied to everybody when he said to Democrats and Republicans ‘you guys come up with a big plan, I’ll sign it,’” he continued.

“In fact, he said that to Dianne Feinstein and then lied because he’s incapable of making a deal. He’s just no good at it. He stinks at it.”

TRUMP INFRASTRUCTURE MEETING DISPUTE SHOWS DEMS’ ‘TRANSPARENT’ STRATEGY TO HINDER PRESIDENT: COMPAGNO

Trump cut the talks short just minutes after meeting with Democratic leaders after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused him of “cover-up,” a charge the president vehemently denied in a fiery Rose Garden speech.

“You can’t do it under these circumstances,” Trump said. “Get these phony investigations over with.”

He added that wanted to pursue an infrastructure proposal, but “instead of walking in happily into a meeting, I walk in to look at people that have just said that I was doing a cover-up,” noting that “I don’t do cover-ups.”

“He’s incapable of striking a deal. The worst dealmaker that’s ever sat in the presidential office.”

— Joe Scarborough

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But Scarborough said the episode on Wednesday just proves Trump is a bad negotiator, claiming that Trump actually prefers Democratic leaders.

“The same thing here also. He wanted an infrastructure plan … the guy who claims to be able to make deals, a guy who actually likes Democratic leaders a lot more than he likes Republican leaders, this guy has always hated Republicans,” he said.

“Despite that background, he’s incapable of striking a deal. The worst dealmaker that’s ever sat in the presidential office”

Source: Fox News Politics

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says former Vice President Joe Biden is a “doofus” who will become a “very radical Democrat” by the time of the general election against President Trump.

Gingrich weighed in on the 2020 presidential race and Biden’s chances during a Thursday appearance on “Fox & Friends,” assuring that Trump is set to win re-election.

BIDEN CAMPAIGN, UNFAZED BY N. KOREA INSULTS, SAYS IT’S ‘NO SURPRISE’ ROGUE NATION PREFERS TRUMP

“Unless something dramatic happens the president is going to win, period,” Gingrich said, particularly pointing to the strength of the economy, which has defied experts’ expectations.

“If you remember, he is the most underestimated campaigner in modern America. He is practicing every day. And the country will have a choice between very radical Democrats whose positions are all unpopular,” he added.

The former House Speaker went on to say that Biden, who’s viewed as a moderate Democrat by some, is moving further to the left and by the time of the election he’ll no longer be a moderate.

“Joe Biden will be a very radical Democrat by the time he gets there,” Gingrich said, reiterating his claim that Biden is a “doofus.”

“Joe Biden will be a very radical Democrat by the time he gets there.”

— Newt Gingrich

“Of course he is a doofus. This is a guy who had to drop out of his first presidential campaign because he adopted the entire speech from Neil Kinnock about growing up in Wales,” he continued, referring to the plagiarism scandal in which Biden lifted portions of the speech by Labour Party leader Neil Kinnock who then ran against Conservative Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s.

TRUMP DEMANDS END TO ‘PHONY INVESTIGATIONS’ IN FIERY ROSE GARDEN STATEMENT, AFTER MEETING WITH DEMS CUT SHORT

During the same appearance, Gingrich said Democrats are only concerned about beating Trump, with House Democrats being forced to be confrontational with Trump to appease their base, leaving House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a box.

“I think Pelosi is in a box because I think she went into her meeting to say, look, guys, this is really stupid and they collectively said to her, ‘we are doing it,’” Gingrich said in relation to the Democrats’ efforts to begin impeachment efforts.

“The Democrats are saying we have to do this. So, her base is so hungry to take on Trump that they would just run over her if she said no. So she is not trying to dance to a point where she can explain why her earlier no has now led to a yes,” he added.

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“Look, I think the Democrats only have one item on their agenda, that’s to beat Trump. I think they are going to run for re-election on the grounds they are not him. And that’s going to be the totality.”

Source: Fox News Politics

A probe into Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s Eastern Virginia Medical School yearbook — which featured a racist photo of a man in blackface standing next to someone in Ku Klux Klan garb — revealed that the school’s president, who donated to the Democrat’s campaign, knew about the image but decided against taking action.

The law firm investigating the origin and content of a racist photo, which appeared on Northam’s page inside the 1984 yearbook, said Wednesday that investigators were unable to determine whether the governor is one of the people seen in the photo or has any other direct connection to it.

VIRGINIA GOV. NORTHAM’S MEDICAL SCHOOL ‘UNABLE TO DETERMINE THE IDENTITY OF THE INDIVIDUALS’ IN RACIST PHOTO

Fox News obtained a copy of the 1984 yearbook page from the Eastern Virginia Medical School library in Norfolk.

Fox News obtained a copy of the 1984 yearbook page from the Eastern Virginia Medical School library in Norfolk.

But the EVMS investigation report disclosed that school President Richard Homan — a donor to Northam’s campaign — had learned about the racist yearbook photo from his staff, raising questions about whether politics was taken into consideration in Homan’s decision not to address the matter.

“The staff members were advising the president at the time of the photograph and asking if EVMS had an obligation to or should do something about it, such as notifying Governor Northam about it,” the report read.

“The president of EVMS decided that the school should not take steps to publicly announce the photograph or to call Governor Northam’s attention to it.”

“The president of EVMS decided that the school should not take steps to publicly announce the photograph or to call Governor Northam’s attention to it.”

— Investigation report

Staff members told investigators that they thought the governor would “already be aware of what was on his personal yearbook page,” while Homan insisted on moving forward rather than revisiting photos from the past.

RALPH NORTHAM YEARBOOK PHOTO BACKLASH: 3 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRGINIA GOVERNOR

According to the Washington Free Beacon, Homan has been supporting Northam’s political ambitions since 2013. He donated $1,000 to Northam’s campaign for lieutenant governor. He then contributed another $1,000 when Northam ran for governor and later donated $10,000 to his inaugural committee in 2017.

Working on behalf of EVMS, McGuireWoods investigators said they couldn’t “conclusively determine” the identities of either person in the 35-year-old photo – leaving all interested parties exactly where they were when the scandal first broke nearly four months ago.

The photo first gained attention after a conservative blog, Big League Politics, dug it up. The backlash was immediate against the Democratic governor, prompting him to go into damage control, offering conflicting statements within hours.

Northam initially issued two apologies within hours of the publication of the photo. He reversed course the next day and said he wasn’t convinced he was one of the men pictured. He did, however, reveal he wore blackface once, decades ago, to look like Michael Jackson for a dance contest.

The 36-page report found no one “with first-hand knowledge of an actual mistake on any page, including any personal page, within the 1984 yearbook” and no evidence that the photo was placed in error, according to the report.

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The report also identified 10 photographs depicting individuals in blackface based on the law firm’s review of all EVMS yearbooks, according to the school.

Fox News Travis Fedschun contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s claim that the world will “end in 12 years” unless climate change is tackled was accepted as a fact by two-thirds of Democrats, even though she said herself that only those with the “social intelligence of a sea sponge” could actually believe it.

The New York Democrat drew mockery from Republicans after she made the doomsday warning in a bid to convince people that radical action against climate change is needed.

OCASIO-CORTEZ CALLS CLIMATE CHANGE ‘OUR WORLD WAR II,’ WARNS THE WORLD WILL END IN 12 YEARS

“Millennials and people, you know, Gen Z and all these folks that will come after us are looking up and we’re like: ‘The world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change and your biggest issue is how are we gonna pay for it?’” Ocasio-Cortez said. A few months later she repeated the claim again.

Earlier this month, however, Ocasio-Cortez backtracked on the gloomy forecast and instead blamed the Republican Party for taking her humor and sarcasm literally.

“This is a technique of the GOP, to take dry humor + sarcasm literally and ‘fact check’ it,” she wrote.

But it appears that more than two-thirds of surveyed Democrats took her literally.

A Rasmussen poll, conducted earlier this week, found 67 percent of Democrats believing that the U.S. has only 12 years to avert the “disastrous and irreparable damage to the country and the world” stemming from climate change. Out of all total likely voters, 48 percent of respondents believed the apocalyptic claim.

OCASIO-CORTEZ SAYS GROWING CAULIFLOWER IN COMMUNITY GARDENS IS ‘COLONIAL’

Ocasio-Cortez has emerged as the key Democratic voice on how to tackle climate change, proposing the Green New Deal resolution that seeks to radically reorganize the economy to ensure climate change is tackled.

The proposal was endorsed by a number of 2020 presidential candidates even before the disastrous rollout of the proposal, which included the now-infamous FAQ document that suggested making air travel obsolete and supporting those “unwilling to work.”

Senate Democrats in March failed to reach the 60 votes necessary to begin debate on the Green New Deal proposal, with 42 Democrats and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., voting “present.”

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The lawmakers said they didn’t vote for the proposal because it was brought to a vote by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for political purposes.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Mazie Hirono said to a pro-choice crowd that she told eighth grade students that their abortion rights are under attack.

Multiple Democrats spoke at an abortion rights protest on Tuesday in front of the Supreme Court following a wave of pro-life legislation across America that severely limited or even banned abortion after six weeks.

KAVANAUGH AND GORSUCH DEFY DEM PREDICTIONS WITH INDEPENDENT STREAK

Hirono, D-Hawaii, told the protesters about speaking to eighth grade students who “get it” about the abortion rights in the U.S.

“I just left 60 eighth graders from a public school in Hawaii, and I told them I was coming to a rally in front of the Supreme Court, and they said, ‘Why?’” Hirono said. “I said it’s because we are–we have to fight for abortion rights and they knew all about it.”

“And I asked the girls in that group of eighth graders: how many of you girls think that government should be telling us, women, when and if we want to have babies, not a single one of them raised their hands.”

“And then, the boys who were there among the sixty, I told them, you know, it’s kind of hard for a woman to get pregnant without you guys,” she said as the crowd laughed. “They got it.”

NPR STYLE BOSS INSTRUCTS STAFF ON ABORTION TERMINOLOGY: ‘BABIES ARE NOT BABIES UNTIL THEY ARE BORN’

“How many of you boys think that government should be telling girls and women when and if we’re going to have babies, and not a single one of them raised their hand,” the senator added.

Many Democrats and progressive groups have been warning that following the passage of pro-life legislation in states such as Alabama and Georgia, the issue is likely to eventually end up at the Supreme Court.

The key concern is that Trump-appointed Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh will rule to effectively overturn Roe v. Wade, even though the two justices have so far defied the concerns and ruled independently, sometimes siding with liberal justices.

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Hirono, a staunch critic of the justices appointed by Trump, even name-dropped Kavanaugh and Gorsuch during the protest, asking “are you listening?” to the concerns of of those attending the protest.

Source: Fox News Politics

Democrats’ warnings that Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh would solidify an unwavering conservative majority on the bench so far have not come to pass, with the two Trump-nominated justices crossing over to side with liberal colleagues on numerous occasions since joining the court.

The confirmations of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh were met with fierce resistance amid concerns that they would tilt the Supreme Court for decades, perhaps even laying the groundwork to overturn Roe v. Wade. While that question remains unresolved as conservative states try to bring the abortion debate back before the high court, a range of other recent decisions indicate the two newest justices are ruling on a case-by-case basis, analysts say.

GORSUCH BREAKS WITH CONSERVATIVE JUSTICES, DELIVERING WIN TO NATIVE AMERICAN HUNTER

“The defining characteristic of both Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh is that they have a very solid judicial philosophy. It’s not a political approach to the cases where you say what the outcome of this case is going to be and now find a judicial and legal rationale,” Carrie Severino, with the conservative Judicial Crisis Network, told Fox News.

“It starts with the law, and it starts with how we interpret this law and using the same type of interpretive techniques regardless of what the real world political results may be, but having a consistent legal approach,” she continued. “That doesn’t always lead to results that one might characterize as liberal or conservative.”

Gorsuch sided Monday with the liberal wing of the Supreme Court, giving a narrow majority in support of a Native American man convicted for hunting in a national forest. Kavanaugh opposed the ruling.

A week earlier, Kavanaugh sided with liberals in a 5-4 decision that he wrote, ruling that Apple could be sued by iPhone owners over high prices in their App Store. Gorsuch opposed the ruling.

In March, the two found themselves in disagreement multiple times. Kavanaugh joined liberal justices in a ruling that delayed the execution of a cop killer amid claims that religious freedom would be violated if the death-row inmate’s Buddhist spiritual adviser wasn’t present during his final moments.

Gorsuch then joined liberals in ruling that the Yakama Nation doesn’t have to pay a Washington state fuel tax, while Kavanaugh dissented.

Gorsuch then joined Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas in dissent in a case brought by two Navy veterans who had been exposed to asbestos. But writing the court’s opinion, Kavanaugh said that the makers of pumps, turbines and blowers that required asbestos insulation to operate properly should have warned about the health dangers of asbestos exposure.

With these rulings, both Gorsuch and Kavanaugh have appeared to show more independence than the so-called liberal bloc of the Supreme Court. “If you look at the liberals on the Supreme Court, they are much more consistent in voting patterns with each other than conservatives,” Severino said.

“If you look at the liberals on the Supreme Court, they are much more consistent in voting patterns with each other than conservatives.”

— Judicial Crisis Network’s Carrie Severino

“I think there’s less consensus than maybe was expected between the conservatives; the liberals seem to still be voting very heavily together,” Adam Feldman, a Supreme Court expert who runs the blog Empirical SCOTUS, told Fox News.

“When we look at the voting blocs, liberals voted together about 92 percent of the time. When you look at any of the iteration of the conservatives, at maximum they are voting together 75 percent of the times.”

The impartiality of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh, though, was called into question by Democrats during their confirmation battles.

“The Trump Administration has shown unprecedented disregard for the rule of law and the role of an independent judiciary, making the need for judicial independence greater than ever. Judge Gorsuch’s record, however, is of loyal fidelity to conservative, Republican causes,” a statement from Senate Democrats read, adding that his judicial record “provides no confidence that he would stand up to President Trump or any other conservative President’s agenda when it crosses the legal line.”

“Judge Gorsuch’s record, however, is of loyal fidelity to conservative, Republican causes … [his judicial record] provides no confidence that he would stand up to President Trump or any other conservative President’s agenda when it crosses the legal line.”

— Senate Democrats

California Sen. Dianne Feinstein labeled Gorsuch an “extremist” beholden to the big business who “has consistently sided with employers and corporate interests,” and went “out of his way to apply his own view of the law” and engage in “selective activism.”

Kavanaugh’s independence was called into question to a severe degree after he slammed the way the Democrats handled sexual misconduct allegations that surfaced during the confirmation process.

“This was not someone who reflected an impartial temperament or the fairness and even-handedness one would see in a judge,” Feinstein said. “This was someone who was aggressive and belligerent. I have never seen someone who wants to be elevated to the highest court in our country behave in that manner.”

“This was not someone who reflected an impartial temperament or the fairness and even handedness one would see in a judge.”

— Sen. Dianne Feinstein

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called Kavanaugh an “extreme partisan” chosen by Trump and conservatives to overturn abortion laws in America. “He gave one of the bitterest, most partisan testimonies ever presented by a nominee.”

KAVANAUGH SIDES WITH LIBERAL JUSTICES AGAINST APPLE, DEALS BLOW TO TECH GIANT IN APP STORE CHALLENGE

At the time, the nominees vowed to be impartial.

“A good judge must be an umpire—a neutral and impartial arbiter who favors no political party, litigant or policy,” Kavanaugh wrote in the Wall Street Journal following a fiery hearing amid accusations of sexual misconduct from decades ago.

“A good judge must be an umpire—a neutral and impartial arbiter who favors no political party, litigant or policy.”

— Brett Kavanaugh

“Over the past 12 years, I have ruled sometimes for the prosecution and sometimes for criminal defendants, sometimes for workers and sometimes for businesses, sometimes for environmentalists and sometimes for coal miners,” he continued. “In each case, I have followed the law. I do not decide cases based on personal or policy preferences. I am not a pro-plaintiff or pro-defendant judge. I am not a pro-prosecution or pro-defense judge. I am a pro-law judge.”

Fox News senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano said Monday that he was shocked by Kavanaugh’s vote regarding Apple, saying “I did not see this coming.”

GORSUCH, KAVANAUGH ON OPPOSITE SIDES AGAIN, THIS TIME ON DELAY OF TEXAS COP KILLER’S EXECUTION

“All the indications about Brett Kavanaugh were that he was a monolithic conservative that wouldn’t even listen to the other side,” he said during an appearance on “America’s Newsroom,” though noting that Kavanaugh always insisted he was “not a monolithic anything” and always stressed that he will listen to the facts and only then decide how to rule.

“Today, he and the four liberal members of the court radically expanded the rights of plaintiffs to bring class actions,” Napolitano added.

Gorsuch, similarly, vowed to be impartial when asked during his confirmation hearing about Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that affirmed a woman’s right to have an abortion under the U.S. Constitution.

Sen. Lindsey Graham asked Gorsuch whether Trump ever asked him to overturn the landmark abortion ruling in his interview with the president, to which Gorsuch replied “No … I would have walked out the door. That’s not what judges do.”

Gorsuch even went on to take a swipe at Trump during one of the hearings, saying criticisms against federal judges are troubling.

“When someone criticizes the honesty, the integrity, or the motives of a federal judge, I find that disheartening, I find that demoralizing,” said Gorsuch.

TRUMP PICKS GORSUCH, KAVANAUGH TAKE OPPOSITE SIDES ON 2 OF 3 SUPREME COURT RULINGS TUESDAY

Yet following the passage of pro-life laws across the U.S., particularly in Alabama, that restricted or banned abortions after six weeks, progressive groups and Democrats are warning that should the cases reach the Supreme Court, both Trump-appointed justices will side with the right on the issue.

Kavanaugh told the Senate during the confirmation process that he views the high court’s abortion precedents as settled law, a sentiment that helped win a critical confirmation vote from Republican Sen. Susan Collins.

In December, Kavanaugh voted to decline to review two lower-court decisions that banned Louisiana and Kansas from cutting Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding, a move that many pro-lifers saw an example of Kavanaugh not being a judge who would rule against abortion.

Gorsuch, meanwhile, was confirmed to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, a conservative judge who was skeptical of Roe v. Wade and suggested the abortion issue should be left to the states for them to independently decide.

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Yet even as Gorsuch replaced an openly conservative justice, he hasn’t made comments that would indicate he’s angling to effectively overturn Roe v. Wade.

During confirmation hearings, Gorsuch issued a judicial defense of the abortion ruling, saying it set the precedent and assured that he accepts that it’s “the law of the land”

“Once a case is settled, that adds to the determinacy of law,” he said. “What was once a hotly contested issue is no longer a hotly contested issue. We move forward.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s son Hunter once worked with a Romanian businessman who was convicted and imprisoned following an investigation over his real estate dealings.

The business dealings of Hunter Biden have become a contentious issue, with President Trump and his associates calling attention to the 49-year-old Biden’s work in Ukraine, China and elsewhere.

BIDEN FACES SCRUTINY FOR DEMANDING OUSTER OF UKRAINE OFFICIAL PROBING FIRM THAT EMPLOYED HIS SON

Suspicions raised

According to the New York Times, the younger Biden increased his international business efforts during his father’s second term as vice president and began associating with figures about whom the U.S. or its ally nations were suspicious.

Hunter Biden reportedly began advising Gabriel Popoviciu, a Romanian businessman said to have opened the country’s first Pizza Hut restaurant, who came under authorities’ scrutiny over his real estate dealings.

The investigation into Popoviciu, who was known as one of the richest and most powerful men in Romania, came amid calls from the U.S. and its allies to crack down on rampant corruption in the country. This led to the conviction of the Romanian businessman and his seven-year sentence in prison.

Other reports concerning the son of the leading 2020 presidential candidate focus on his role in the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings, a company that employed him as a board member as the U.S. and the Obama administration were mulling a course of action amid Russia’s invasion in Eastern Ukraine.

GIULIANI WEIGHS IN ON HUNTER BIDEN’S DEALINGS IN UKRAINE EMERGING AS 2020 ISSUE FOR JOE BIDEN

‘Crying out to be investigated’

Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s personal attorney, said on “Hannity” last week that former the younger Biden’s dealings in Ukraine represent “a case that is crying out to be investigated,” adding, “If it doesn’t get investigated, we just don’t have equal justice in this country.”

“His son then got under investigation for good reason. He was working for the most corrupt company in Ukraine, he was working for a Ukrainian oligarch who was being protected by [Russian President Vladimir] Putin, the same Putin we that have been hearing about all this time.”

— Rudy Giuliani

“His son then got under investigation for good reason. He was working for the most corrupt company in Ukraine, he was working for a Ukrainian oligarch who was being protected by [Russian President Vladimir] Putin, the same Putin we that have been hearing about all this time. Imagine that,” said Giuliani, who has received some criticism for having provided legal advice to Popoviciu, the Romanian businessman.

Biden publicly admitted during an innocuous public event that he threatened the Ukrainian president to fire a top prosecutor, who happened at the time to have been investigating corruption of Burisma.

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The prosecutor, who was fired after the threat, was reportedly facing criticism back then by both Ukrainians and international officials for not bringing enough corruption prosecutions. Biden’s push to oust the prosecutor may have not been influenced by the probe of the company his son was involved in.

Source: Fox News Politics

Just days after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he would not comply with a House Democratic subpoena for President Trump’s tax returns, a confidential draft IRS memo obtained by The Washington Post called the disclosure “mandatory,” unless the president asserts his executive privilege.

MNUCHIN SAYS HE WON’T COMPLY WITH SUBPOENA FOR TRUMP’S TAX RETURNS

The paper published the 10-page memo that does not mention Trump by name, but appears to add new pressure on the administration.

Mnuchin has been resisting House Democrats’ request for Trump’s tax returns on the grounds that such request “lacks a legitimate legislative purpose” and said his department will not “disclose the requested returns and return information.”

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, a lawmaker from Massachusetts, insisted that the committee is looking into the effectiveness of IRS mandatory audits of tax returns of all sitting presidents, a way to justify his claim that the panel has a potential legislative purpose.

But the IRS document says the law “does not allow the Secretary to exercise discretion in disclosing the information provided the statutory conditions are met” and directly rejects the reason Mnuchin has cited for withholding the information.

“[T]he Secretary’s obligation to disclose return and return information would not be affected by the failure of a tax writing committee … to state a reason for the request,” it reportedly reads, adding that the “only basis the agency’s refusal to comply with a committee’s subpoena would be the invocation of the doctrine of executive privilege.”

“[T]he Secretary’s obligation to disclose return and return information would not be affected by the failure of a tax writing committee … to state a reason for the request.”

— IRS memo

HOUSE DEMOCRAT SUBPOENAS MNUCHIN, IRS FOR TRUMP’S TAX RETURNS

The paper said the IRS said the draft memo – titled “Congressional Access to Returns and Return Information” – did not represented the IRS’ “official position.” It was not signed.

The standoff between the Congressional Democrats and the administration is likely to lead to a court battle, with Trump reportedly indicating that he’s prepared to fight up until the case reaches the Supreme Court.

The president reportedly likened the request to obtain his tax returns to the Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians, and suggested the effort is designed to damage him politically.

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Trump declined to reveal his tax returns during the 2016 presidential election, claiming he was under audit. Political candidates aren’t required to disclose their tax returns, though traditionally all candidates do.

Fox News’ Edmund DeMarche and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said former law enforcement officials are “turning on each other” amid Attorney General Bill Barr’s investigation into the potential misconduct by the FBI in its probe of the Trump campaign in 2016.

On “America’s Newsroom” Tuesday, Huckabee reacted to the news that former Attorney General Loretta Lynch accused ex-FBI Director James Comey of mischaracterizing her statements while being under oath.

LORETTA LYNCH ACCUSES COMEY OF MISREPRESENTING KEY CLINTON PROBE CONVERSATION, WAS ‘QUITE SURPRISED’ BY HIS TESTIMONY

“She basically called him a liar. That’s something that he has been called a lot over the past few months by people who have looked at what he said and how it contradicts other things he said. I think what we’re seeing is that this whole issue is now moving from a political theater to a legal theater,” Huckabee said.

“That means the rules are changed. When it was about the political rhetoric people could say whatever they want,” Huckabee continued.

“James Comey could speak politically, he could go on talk shows, promote his book. He could present himself as some big deal who knew a lot and was a little more sanctimonious than pretty much anybody else in the country.”

When it was about the political rhetoric people could say whatever they want … James Comey could speak politically, he could go on talk shows, promote his book. He could present himself as some big deal who knew a lot and was a little more sanctimonious than pretty much anybody else in the country.”

— Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee

Lynch testified that Comey’s claim that she privately instructed him to call the Hillary Clinton email probe a “matter” instead of an “investigation” left her “quite surprised.”

She made the dramatic remarks at a joint closed-door session of the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees last December. A transcript of her testimony was released on Monday by House Judiciary Committee ranking member Doug Collins, R-Ga.

EX-CIA OFFICIAL BLAMES COMEY FOR PUSHING STEELE DOSSIER; BUT COMEY POINTED FINGER AT BRENNAN, SOURCES SAY

Her comments stem from Comey’s June 2017 interview under oath with the House Intelligence Committee, during which he said that Lynch had pressed him to downplay the significance of the Clinton email review in September 2015.

“The attorney general had directed me not to call it an investigation, but instead to call it a matter, which confused me and concerned me,” Comey testified. “That was one of the bricks in the load that led me to conclude, ‘I have to step away from the department if we’re to close this case credibly.’”

Comey said the moment led him to question her independence and contributed to his decision to unilaterally hold a press conference in July 2016 announcing the conclusions of the probe.

But the dynamic has changed, the former governor said, thanks to the DOJ investigation spearheaded by Barr that is reportedly looking into whether the FBI acted inappropriately in its investigation of the Trump campaign.

“Something that could cost them really their freedom. I think it’s going to be interesting as these folks are turning on each other. Out of the matter of self-preservation.”

— Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee

“Now things have changed. William Barr is gonna be looking at this not for the politics but for whether or not people broke the law, stepped over their lines and did something that was not just unethical, but was illegal,” he said.

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“Something that could cost them really their freedom. I think it’s going to be interesting as these folks are turning on each other. Out of the matter of self-preservation.”

Fox News’ Gregg Re contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Eric Swalwell has accumulated a massive credit card debt, failed to pay off his student loans and cashed out his pension despite earning $174,000 a year since 2013.

The longshot presidential candidate, who appears to have qualified for the Democratic Party debates, is unlikely to point to his personal financial management as the reason he should be the next U.S. president.

Since 2013, when he was first elected into Congress, Swalwell started earning a hefty salary of $174,000 a year. Prior to that, as a prosecutor in an Alameda County and town council member in Dublin, Calif., he earned around $118,000, according to the last full year of work.

ERIC SWALWELL ROASTED AFTER FLUNKING BASICS OF CONSTITUTION, GETTING OUTRAGED ‘WOMAN’ NOT MENTIONED IN FOUNDING DOCUMENT

But as the Washington Free Beacon first reported, Swalwell’s financial disclosures reveal that the Congressman ignored his liabilities. Fox News independently reviewed the financial disclosure reports.

Despite the significant increase in pay, Swalwell currently owes the student debt worth between $50,001 and $100,000 – the same level of debt as eight years ago. Meanwhile, his Alameda County pension fund that was worth between $15,001 and $50,000 was cashed out back in 2013.

In 2016, Swalwell noted that he has an investment of $15,001 to $50,000 in a Vanguard retirement account, but as he made the investment, he also racked up a credit card bill of between 10,001 and $15,000 with American Express and between $10,001 and $15,000 with Chase Bank.

Swalwell’s situation worsened the next year, disclosing that his credit card debt with Chase Bank increased to between $15,001 and $50,000.

SWALWELL BYPASSES COFFEE INSIDE TRUMP TOWER, TWEETS ABOUT IT

The congressman also didn’t disclose any real estate in his possession. According to the Washington Free Bacon, Swalwell is currently renting a four-bedroom townhouse in Washington, D.C.

The presidential candidate has been repeatedly mocked over his failed attempts at humor, grandstanding and relentless pushing of the idea that President Trump or his campaign colluded with Russia.

Earlier this month, Swalwell was ridiculed after stumbling over his knowledge of the Constitution in a bid to score political points and complaining that the Constitution doesn’t mention “woman”. Many pointed out that “Man” is also not mentioned in the Constitution.

Earlier this year, the congressman was scorned after he bravely bypassed a café inside the Trump Tower and opted out to find another coffee spot in New York City.

“It’s snowing in New York,” he wrote in a tweet. “I need coffee. The closest cafe is inside Trump Tower. This is me walking to an alternative.”

He later admitted that he was rightfully roasted for the tweet, saying “I was rightfully skilled about that on Twitter and that’s why I love Twitter.”

“Sometimes it’s just a cathartic place to go, where you can dish it out and you better be able to take it and just move on to the next tweet.”

CALIFORNIA DEM SAYS US WOULD WIN ‘SHORT WAR’ AGAINST GUN-RIGHTS ADVOCATES: ‘THE GOVERNMENT HAS NUKES’

Last year, Swalwell said the U.S. government would use its nuclear weapons in a hypothetical war against Second Amendment supporters refusing to give up their firearms.

His outlandish comment came after a gun-rights advocate pointed out that he once called for gun owners to surrender their assault weapons.

“So basically @RepSwalwell wants a war. Because that’s what you would get. You’re outta your f—— mind if you think I’ll give up my rights and give the [government] all the power,” Joe Biggs tweeted at Swalwell.

This prompted Swalwell to defend himself, saying it would be a “short war” because “the government has nukes,” implying the government would use its nuclear arsenal against its own citizens.

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The Swalwell campaign didn’t immediately respond to Fox News’inquiry regarding his financial management.

His office told the Washington Free Beacon that he will soon publish his tax returns, but didn’t address questions about his financial disclosures.

“Americans should have no doubt about where their leaders’ loyalties lie,” he told the outlet. “All candidates running for president should release their tax returns. I will release mine soon, as well.”

Source: Fox News Politics

The Republican National Committee (RNC) raised a whopping $15.9 million in April, more than double the money the Democratic National Committee managed to raise the same month.

The Democratic Party’s key body raised just $6.6 million, according to new campaign finance data, even as the party is bracing for competitive 2020 elections, with the White House, House and Senate.

The disclosures reveal that the RNC has so far amassed a massive war chest totaling $34.7 million at the end of the month, while the DNC so far has $7.6 million on hand.

TRUMP CAMPAIGN RAISING BIG BUCKS FROM WOMEN

Not only Republicans are beating Democrats in total fundraising, the majority of donations to the RNC came from small donors who donated up to $200. According to the disclosures, nearly $9 million in donations came from such donors, while just over $4 million were from large donors. The rest of the fund came via other forms of contributions.

On the Democratic side, the ratio between small donors and big donors is somewhat equal, though big donors in total contributed slightly more, with the figure being $3,084,136. Small donors donated $3,065,795.

The small donations difference is particularly upsetting to the DNC as the party long had a competitive edge due to the massive fundraising tool ActBlue, while Republicans, who don’t such comparable technology, have been worried in the past about not connecting with the grassroots donors.

BOOKER DEPUTY CAMPAIGN MANAGER DONATES TO GILLIBRAND CAMPAIGN TO ‘ENSURE’ DEBATE SPOT

The RNC spent over $2 million on legal bills in April, one of the highest spending by the group in April, according to Politico. The Party also paid $294,000 on so-called “list acquisition” in a bid to improve its texting capabilities.

But some big donations to the RNC are coming under scrutiny, with the outlet pointing out that two donors have been embroiled in controversies.

Financier John Childs, who gave $100,000 to the RNC, has allegedly been involved in a Florida prostitution ring, a charge he vehemently denied.

Casino mogul Steve Wynn, who donated $248,500, has been accused of sexual assault, an allegation he denied. He has not been charged.

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On the DNC side, big donors included Silicon Valley philanthropist Karla Jurvetson, financier Bernard Schwartz and Zumiez chairman Thomas Campion who all gave either $100,000 or $75,000.

Source: Fox News Politics

Mischievous hackers apparently gained access to President Trump’s golf account and posted remarkably bad scores on Friday.

Four scores were posted to the president’s USGA-administered GHIN (Golf Handicap and Information Network) system on Friday, though there’s no indication that the scores – 101, 100, 108, 102 – are authentic because Trump was traveling and didn’t play golf.

TRUMP PRESENTS ‘TRUE LEGEND’ TIGER WOODS WITH PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM

TURNBERRY, SCOTLAND - JULY 15: U.S. President Donald Trump plays a round of golf at Trump Turnberry Luxury Collection Resort during the U.S. President's first official visit to the United Kingdom on July 15, 2018 in Turnberry, Scotland. The President of the United States and First Lady, Melania Trump on their first official visit to the UK after yesterday's meetings with the Prime Minister and the Queen is in Scotland for private weekend stay at his Turnberry. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

TURNBERRY, SCOTLAND – JULY 15: U.S. President Donald Trump plays a round of golf at Trump Turnberry Luxury Collection Resort during the U.S. President’s first official visit to the United Kingdom on July 15, 2018 in Turnberry, Scotland. The President of the United States and First Lady, Melania Trump on their first official visit to the UK after yesterday’s meetings with the Prime Minister and the Queen is in Scotland for private weekend stay at his Turnberry. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

According to Golfweek, the courses used in the fake scores were Trump National New York, Trump International in West Palm Beach, and the Cochise Course at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Arizona.

“We have become aware of reports in the media questioning recent scores posted on President Trump’s GHIN account. As we dug into the data it appears someone has erroneously posted a number of scores on behalf of the GHIN user,” USGA’s Craig Annis told Golfweek in a statement.

“We are taking corrective action to remove the scores and partnering with our allied golf associations, and their member clubs, to determine the origin of the issue.”

“We have become aware of reports in the media questioning recent scores posted on President Trump’s GHIN account. As we dug into the data it appears someone has erroneously posted a number of scores on behalf of the GHIN user.”

— USGA’s Craig Annis

SPORTSWRITER TAKES SWING AT TRUMP: BOOK SAYS PRESIDENT CHEATS AT GOLF, BATTLED LOCALS TO BUILD COURSE

The media has long scrutinized Trump’s golf record as he maintains an index of 2.8 that is perceived as especially good.

A book released last month by longtime sportswriter Rick Reilly accused Trump of not being always honest on the course when marking the scores.

Reilly detailed one time Trump played with Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson shortly after becoming president. Trump’s partner, Fox Sports golf analyst Brad Faxon, said the president marked down a score that didn’t account for two balls he hit in the water.

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Faxon recalled that he was laughing about the situation at the time, “because Trump was actually putting for a seven, but he was claiming it was for a four, which would’ve worked out to a three with his free stroke on the hole.”

Fox News’ Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg said Friday that things named after President Thomas Jefferson should be renamed because that’s the “right thing to do.”

Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Ind., who became the rising star of the 2020 Democratic primary, echoed the far-left calls to rename buildings or events that carry the names of prominent U.S. figures on the grounds that they were owners of slaves.

PETE BUTTIGIEG’S STANCE ON KEY ISSUES, FROM HEALTH CARE TO IMMIGRATION

The mayor was asked during “The Hugh Hewitt Show” on radio whether the name of the annual Indiana Democratic dinner, named the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner, should be renamed as both presidents were holders of slaves.

“Yeah, we’re doing that in Indiana. I think it’s the right thing to do,” Buttigieg said, according to the Washington Free Beacon. He then offered a tepid defense of the Founding Father while agreeing that events shouldn’t be named after him.

“Over time, you develop and evolve on the things you choose to honor … Jefferson is more problematic,” he said.”

“There’s a lot, of course, to admire in his thinking and his philosophy, but then again if you plunge into his writings, especially the notes on the state of Virginia, you know that he knew slavery was wrong. We are all morally conflicted human beings.”

BUTTIGIEG HITS TRUMP OVER STORMY DANIELS PAYOFF, QUESTIONS SUPPORT FROM ‘RELIGIOUS RIGHT’

But while Jefferson shouldn’t be erased from history books, Buttigieg says events shouldn’t be named after him.

“The real reason I think there is a lot of pressure on this is the relationship between the past and present that we’re finding in a million different ways that racism isn’t some curiosity out of the past that we’re embarrassed about but moved on from,” he said.

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“It’s alive. It’s well. It’s hurting people and it’s one of the main reasons to be in politics today is to try to change or reverse the harms that went along with that.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blamed Twitter’s character limitations — and the reading skills of her critics — after getting called out for spreading misinformation about the newly signed abortion ban in Alabama.

The New York Democrat used the social media platform to criticize the law, which was signed by the governor on Wednesday and outlaws nearly all abortions in the state. The same law also makes performing an abortion a felony, punishable by up to 99 years or life in prison unless the mother’s health is at risk, with no exceptions for women impregnated by rape or incest.

ALABAMA ‘HAS GONE TOO FAR’ WITH ‘EXTREME’ ABORTION BILL, PAT ROBERTSON SAYS

“Alabama lawmakers are making all abortions a felony punishable w jail time, including women victimized by rape+incest,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a tweet.

“Of course, no added punishments for rapists. It’s going to [Governor Kay Ivey’s] desk. She will decide the future of women’s rights in Alabama.”

The tweet was immediately called out by conservative commentators, who pointed out that the law specifically targets the abortion providers and is designed to not punish women.

“This is a lie,” tweeted the Daily Wire’s Michel Knowles, citing a portion of the law that specifically addresses the issue.

“Section 5. No woman upon whom an abortion is performed or attempted to be performed shall be criminally or civilly liable. Furthermore, no physician confirming the serious health risk to the child’s mother shall be criminally or civilly liable for those actions,” read the bill’s text.

ALABAMA GOVERNOR SIGNS RESTRICTIVE ABORTION BILL INTO LAW AS ACLU VOWS TO SUE

“Everything about this tweet by @AOC is false,” wrote Caleb Hull. “Women who receive abortions in Alabama do NOT face jail time under the new Heartbeat bill. It is doctors who face prison if they illegally perform abortions and are convicted of a felony, not the pregnant women.”

Ocasio-Cortez didn’t admit her error and instead went on to blame the social media platform for having limited space.

“It’s a felony punishable by jail, [including] cases of women pregnant by rape or incest. Twitter is 280 [characters] – read the context clues in grammar of the tweet,” she tweeted.

“But good to know you’re here to promote criminalizing medical providers aiding victims of rape and incest! good job.”

She also challenged those who claimed women wouldn’t face felony charges, implying that they overlooked that women medical staffers could face charges for providing abortion services.

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The Alabama abortion ban ignited a debate across the country, with critics arguing that it’s going too far while more conservative people say the law rightfully targets abortion providers.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) vowed to sue the law was first approved in the state Senate on Tuesday and reiterated the plan to sue on Wednesday.

A similar pro-life law has been enacted in Georgia, with Gov. Brian Kemp signing the “heartbeat” bill into law that prohibits abortions in the state after a heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. The law allows exceptions in the case of rape, incest, or if the life of the mother is in danger.

Source: Fox News Politics

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Iraqi officials that U.S. intelligence showed Iran-backed militias moved missiles near bases housing American forces, a revelation that came just hours after all non-emergency personnel at the U.S. Embassy in Iraq was ordered to leave the country.

Pompeo made the disclosure to Iraq’s top brass during his surprise visit earlier this month, Reuters reported.

US NON-ESSENTIAL PERSONNEL ORDERED TO LEAVE IRAQ EMBASSY, CONSULATE

He asked the military officials to keep the Shi’ite militias in control as they are expanding their presence in the country and now are part of the country’s security apparatus. The top diplomat warned that otherwise, the U.S. would have to use force to tackle the security threats.

“The message from the Americans was clear. They wanted guarantees that Iraq would stop those groups threatening U.S. interests,” a senior Iraqi military source with knowledge of Pompeo’s trip told Reuters.

“They said if the U.S. were attacked on Iraqi soil, it would take action to defend itself without coordinating with Baghdad.”

A State Department spokesperson told Fox News: “Given the increased threat stream we are seeing in Iraq, which we shared with the Iraqi government during the Secretary’s visit on May 7 and in subsequent engagements, the Secretary has decided to place Mission Iraq on ordered departure.

“Ensuring the safety of U.S. government personnel and U.S. citizens and security of our facilities are our highest priorities. We remain committed to partnering with Iraqis to advance our mutual interests.”
“For safety reasons, I am not able to detail specific security concerns.”

“They said if the U.S. were attacked on Iraqi soil, it would take action to defend itself without coordinating with Baghdad.”

— Senior Iraqi military source

In this Sunday, May 12, 2019 photo released by the U.S. Air Force, a U.S. Air Force B-52H Stratofortress aircraft assigned to the 20th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron takes off from Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.

In this Sunday, May 12, 2019 photo released by the U.S. Air Force, a U.S. Air Force B-52H Stratofortress aircraft assigned to the 20th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron takes off from Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. (Staff Sgt. Ashley Gardner, U.S. Air Force via AP)

U.S. officials said last week that urgent “credible threats” from Iran against Americans were detected in Iraq, prompting the embassy to advise against all travel to the region, citing “heightened tensions.”

On Wednesday morning, all non-emergency personnel at the U.S. Embassy and consulate in Iraq was ordered to leave the country. Normal visa services were also temporarily halted.

But the claim at hostile militia forces are positioning the rockets near bases housing American troops, provides more insight into the threats the U.S. faces in the Middle East in the wake of rising tensions between the Trump administration and the Iranian regime.

COTTON SAYS AMERICA WOULD WIN WAR AGAINST IRAN IN ‘TWO STRIKES’

President Trump denied Tuesday the reports that the administration was planning to send more than 100,000 troops to the region in the wake of heightened tensions in the region, but instead noted that “If we did that, we’d send a hell of a lot more troops than that.”

Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi told the media on Tuesday that his side didn’t have information showing “movements that constitute a threat to any side,” though added that his government “is doing its duty to protect all parties.”

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Tuesday that “We fundamentally do not seek war with Iran, we’re looking for the regime to simply stop conducting assassination campaigns throughout Europe.”

His comments followed numerous threatening comments by Iranian officials who effectively threatened the U.S. with war.

Iran’s Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei also downplayed the escalation. Iran’s state TV quoted Khamenei on Tuesday as calling negotiations with the U.S. “poison” and saying: “This is not a military confrontation, because no war is going to happen.”

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Khamenei, who has final say on all state matters, said: “Neither we, nor they are seeking war, they know that it is not to their benefit.”

Iranian state media reported Wednesday however that Khamenei followed up these remarks by saying it wouldn’t be difficult for the Islamic Republic to enrich uranium to weapons-grade levels amid rising tensions with the U.S., state media reported Wednesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton predicted in a recent interview that the U.S. would win a war against Iran in “two strikes.”

Comments by Cotton, an arch critic of the Iranian regime and the nuclear deal from which the Trump administration withdrew last year, coincide with the increasing escalation between the two countries.

“Could we win in a war with Iran?” PBS’ “Firing Line” host Margaret Hoover asked Cotton during a recent interview.

“Yes, two strikes,” Cotton said. “The first strike and the last strike.”

US NON-ESSENTIAL PERSONNEL ORDERED TO LEAVE IRAQ EMBASSY, CONSULATE

The senator went on to say that the all-out war with Iran would be justified if the regime “struck out militarily against us or against our allies in the region, then I would certainly expect a devastating response against Iran.”

But he insisted that he doesn’t advocate taking a military action against the Middle Eastern country, saying, “I’m simply delivering the message that if Iran were to attack the United States it would be a grave miscalculation on their part and there would be a furious response.”

The State Department ordered Wednesday all non-emergency personnel at the U.S. Embassy and consulate in Iraq to leave the country amid rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran.

IRANIAN PRESIDENTIAL AIDE SAYS TRUMP WILL ‘GET A WAR’ FOR LISTENING TO ‘THE MUSTACHE’ JOHN BOLTON

Trump warned Iran on Monday afternoon that it will “suffer greatly” if the country does “anything” in the form of an attack, a remark that came in the wake of revelations that U.S. military experts suggested “Iran or its proxies” damaged four commercial ships off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Sunday.

Last week, U.S. officials said urgent “credible threats” from Iran against Americans were detected and the embassy advised against all travel to the region, citing “heightened tensions.”

The president also denied Tuesday the reports that the administration was planning to send more than 100,000 troops to the region in the wake of the war with Iran, but adding, “Would I do that? Absolutely … If we did that, we’d send a hell of a lot more troops than that.”

Cotton also said during the same PBS appearance that the U.S. doesn’t actually want “to govern Iran” and that it’s up to the ordinary people in the country to topple the regime.

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“We don’t want to rule 80 million Iranians, we want 80 million Iranians to be able to govern themselves,” he said, adding that Iran should try to “rejoin the civilized world and stop supporting terrorism and trying to overthrow the governments of so many of its neighbors.”

“War is never inevitable,” Cotton said. “War is always the product of human choices.”

Source: Fox News Politics

More than 20 House Democrats are planning a grueling 12-hour-long public reading of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation in its entirety, except for the redacted parts, on Thursday.

At the forefront of the spectacle is Pennsylvania Democrat Mary Gay Scanlon, vice chairwoman of the House Judiciary Committee, who’s been rallying other Democrats to join her in the public reading of the report that found no collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign, though it also noted there are 10 instances that could qualify as an obstruction of justice.

DEVIN NUNES SAYS STRZOK-PAGE ‘INSURANCE POLICY’ REFERRED TO OBTAINING FISA WARRANT FOR TRUMP CAMPAIGN’S EMAILS

“We’ve been saying for weeks that if you think there was no obstruction and no collusion, you haven’t read the Mueller report. So the ongoing quest has been, ‘How do we get that story out there while we are waiting for the witnesses to come in?’”

— Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon, D-Pa.

“We’ve been saying for weeks that if you think there was no obstruction and no collusion, you haven’t read the Mueller report. So the ongoing quest has been, ‘How do we get that story out there while we are waiting for the witnesses to come in?’” Scanlon told the Washington Post.

In a statement her office circulated to the media, she said that the Mueller report “illustrates a presidency founded in opportunism, devoid of respect for public service and the rule of law” and that “this administration and its enablers do not want the American people hear the contents of this report.”

The Mueller report is available to the public to read. The Democrats who will participate in the marathon reading will be reading the exact same copy of the report.

The House Judiciary Committee recently subpoenaed the DOJ for the full unredacted report and its underlying materials, a demand that was rejected by Attorney General Bill Barr. The Committee, in response, voted last week to hold Barr in contempt.

JIM JORDAN SAYS AG BARR ‘SERIOUS’ ABOUT UNCOVERING ORIGINS OF RUSSIA PROBE

Scanlon told the newspaper that it will take about 12 to 14 hours to go through all 448 pages of the report, with her colleagues dividing up the reading shifts. The report will be read in the House Rules Committee Room and will be live-streamed. The recording then will be made into an audiobook.

Among other participants in the public reading will be Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler and Rep. Jamie Raskin.

Scanlon also denied that she and her fellow Democrats are engaging in a political stunt, saying “It’s not a ploy to keep anything going.”

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“The Mueller report was a mandate from the Department of Justice that there be an investigation into these very troubling aspects about what was happening in our government,” she told the outlet. “So you know, it may be inconvenient, it may be time-consuming, but it’s what we have to do.”

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are close in key battleground states, with Trump leading in four out of six crucial states, according to Republican pollster Chris Wilson.

Wilson, former director of research analytics and digital strategy for Ted Cruz’s 2016 campaign, told “Fox and Friends” on Tuesday morning that the latest findings from WPA Intelligence, where he is a CEO, are good news for Trump.

“What we found is the president is doing very well in a lot of the states he won back in 2016. The ones that gave him victory. And we see six states we looked at; he has a lead in all but two of them. And in those he is in the margin of error, just slightly behind,” he said.

“What we found is the president is doing very well in a lot of the states he won back in 2016. The ones that gave him victory. And we see six states we looked at; he has a lead in all but two of them. And in those he is in the margin of error, just slightly behind.”

— Chris Wilson

LIZ PEEK: TRUMP VS BIDEN MAY NOT BE THE MATCH DEMOCRATS ARE HOPING FOR

Wilson said that Trump has a lead in Florida, Iowa, Texas and Wisconsin, while he’s in “dead heat” in Pennsylvania and slightly behind in Michigan, showing that the midterm elections last year, in which the GOP lost the control of the House, aren’t comparable to the presidential election.

“What we saw is the midterm elections really tell us nothing about what’s going to happen in 2020 and that’s a good reminder when it comes to these sort of presidential elections, midterm have nothing to do with it,” he said.

Wilson notes that when Trump is being tested against Biden, “we see he leads with blue-collar workers and we see he is rebounding with suburban voters.”

The poll also shows that Trump is breaking 50 percent approval rating in the battleground states, with 47 percent disapproving of him as the president. But Wilson says that these figures reflect more the “hyper partisan climate” rather than indicating how the voters would cast their ballots in the 2020 election.

LIMBAUGH SAYS DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY MAY BE OVER WITH BIDEN LEADING THE WAY

But the data does suggest that taking a strong stand on trade deals, China and other countries “is having an impact on [Trump’s] numbers overall,” Wilson said.

The pollster went on to explain that the reason Biden, who jumped into the race just weeks ago, is leading in two states and is just slightly behind in four others is because he’s “benefiting from a bit of a honeymoon period.”

“The other aspect of this is that Joe Biden tries to kick-start or restart or jump-start the Obama international apology tour,” he said.

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“It again points to the fact as you see the president taking strong stands on these international trade agreements and taking strong stands on the economy to make sure it keeps humming along. It’s in those states, the Iowas, the Wisconsins, the Michigans, the Pennsylvanias where it’s going to have the strongest impact for the president.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Former Vice President Joe Biden downplayed again the threat of China, saying the Chinese economy or its influence won’t overtake the U.S., reiterating his previous stance that China is not a competitor.

Biden made the comments during a campaign stop in Manchester, New Hampshire on Monday, just weeks after facing bipartisan criticism over his comments on China.

PENTAGON DISPUTES BIDEN’S ASSESSMENT OF CHINA, SAYS COUNTRY IS A ‘STRATEGIC COMPETITOR

“What are we doing? We’re walking around with our heads down, ‘Woe is me,’” the leading 2020 Democrat told the crowd. “No other nation can catch us, including China. I got criticized for saying that. I’ve spent as much time with [Chinese President] Xi Jinping as any world leader has.”

At another rally in Hampton, Biden slammed President Trump over his tough stance towards China and the escalating trade war, saying Trump “gone about it all the wrong way.”

“The president has done nothing but increase the tariffs, the debt, and the trade deficit. The way we have to proceed is we have to have our allies with us. It’s not just us. We have to keep the world together,” Biden said in the wake Trump raising tariffs to 25 percent on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, while the Chinese retaliated with tariffs from 10 percent up to 20-25 percent on some American goods and products.

BIDEN SLAMS TRUMP OVER ESCALATING TRADE WAR WITH CHINA

Biden has been criticized for a weak stance towards China earlier this month after he somewhat mocked those taking the China threat seriously.

“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man!” Biden exclaimed at a rally in Iowa. “The fact that they have this great division between the China Sea and the mountains in the East – I mean in the West.”

“They can’t figure out how they’re going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us.”

— Joe Biden

“They can’t figure out how they’re going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us,” he said.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders tweeted “it’s wrong to pretend that China isn’t one of our major economic competitors” while Utah Sen. Mitt Romney wrote that Biden’s comments would “not age well.”

Assistant Defense Secretary for Asia Randall Schriver, a top Pentagon official, weighed on the issue and dismissed Biden’s comments, telling reporters that “I’ll stick with the language in our national security strategy and our national defense strategy, which identifies China as a strategic competitor.”

Trump, meanwhile, said Biden was among many politicians “naïve” over China. “For somebody to be so naive, and say China’s not a problem — if Biden actually said that, that’s a very dumb statement.”

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Following the initial criticism, he reportedly backtracked on his comments, saying during a fundraiser in South Carolina that “He’s got problems, he’s got gigantic problems. Doesn’t mean he’s not a threat, doesn’t mean they’re not a threat.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams said she’s “going to look at the 2020 presidential election,” fueling speculation that she will join the crowded Democratic presidential primary field.

Abrams, who lost the Georgia gubernatorial election last year – although she continues to insist that she actually won – spoke at an event hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations on Friday.

STACEY ABRAMS AGAIN CLAIMS SHE WON GEORGIA GOVERNOR’S RACE: ‘I’M NOT’ A GOOD SPORT

“I’m looking at executive level opportunities, and that means that I am going to look at the 2020 presidential election,” she said, according to USA Today.

“I’m looking at executive level opportunities, and that means that I am going to look at the 2020 presidential election.”

— Stacey Abrams

The remarks appear to have caused gasps in the audience, prompting Abrams to contain the excitement: “Stop. Stop. I didn’t announce anything. We have an amazing crop of candidates running, but as I have tried to articulate, this is early.”

“I want to see what these candidates talk about,” she added. “I think a number of them have been talking about what needs to be done… my goal is to think about whether I should be a part of this conversation.” “

During the event, Abrams also left the door open to becoming vice president, a position she previously dismissed, or running for Georgia governor in the next election.

“If I decide not to run, and someone wins and decides they like me, I’m open to conversations after June [2020]. And there still is a state of Georgia, and it does need a governor, and I’m going to be looking at that too.”

STACEY ABRAMS DEFENDS BIDEN AMID ALLEGATIONS, SAYS ‘PERFECTION’ CAN’T BE ‘LITMUS TEST’, PEOPLE SHOULD ‘FORGIVE’

Abrams has recently made numerous public appearances on television and events, where she faces questions about her future political career. She also continues to assert that she actually won against Republican Governor Brian Kemp, despite receiving less votes in the 2018 election.

Last month, Abrams shot down rumors that she’s considering joining former Vice President Joe Biden’s 2020 bid as his running mate.

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“I do not believe you run for second place and I do not intend to enter a presidential race as a primary candidate for vice president,” she said.

Fox News’ Adam Shaw contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez slammed former Vice President Joe Biden’s “middle ground” climate change plan that is yet to be released, saying it’s a “dealbreaker” for the progressives.

The New York Democrat joined environmental groups Friday in attacking Biden amid a report that his climate change plan will strike a less alarmist tone and won’t commit to a radical transformation of the economy.

“This is a dealbreaker. There is no ‘middle ground’ w/ climate denial & delay,” tweeted Ocasio-Cortez, who earlier this year introduced the Green New Deal, a far-reaching proposal to combat climate change.

OCASIO-CORTEZ SAYS SHE WAS ‘ASTONISHED’ WHEN MAN LEFT SIGN OUTSIDE HER OFFICE IN SUPPORT OF BOTH HER AND TRUMP

“Blaming ‘blue collar’ Americans as the main opponents to bold climate policy is gas lobbyist 101,” she added. “We’re not going to solve the climate crisis w/ this lack of leadership. Our kids’ lives are at stake.”

According to Reuters, Biden’s plan, which hasn’t yet been released, aims to appeal to both die-hard environmentalists and blue-collar voters who voted for President Trump in 2016.

The core of the plan will likely include the U.S. re-joining the Paris Climate Agreement and focusing on technology and regulations to limit emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.

The leading 2020 candidate also teased his plan on social media, tweeting: “I’m proud to have been one of the first to introduce climate change legislation. What I fought for in 1986 is more important than ever — climate change is an existential threat. Now. Today.”

BIDEN BACKS HEALTH CARE FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS, SAYS ‘WE HAVE AN OBLIGATION’ TO PROVIDE IT

“We need policies that reflect this urgency. I’ll have more specifics on how America can lead on climate in the coming weeks.”

But progressive activist and environmental groups pounced amid the report about his plan. Sunrise Movement issued a scorching statement, calling Biden’s plan “a death sentence for our generation.”

Prominent anti-capitalism activist Naomi Klein, meanwhile, tweeted: “No Joe, there is no “middle ground” on climate breakdown – there is bold, transformative action or there is sinking ground, burning ground and churning ground.”

Yet some Biden staffers have objected to Reuters’ characterizations of the plan, issuing a number of tweets arguing that Biden’s plan will be as radical as those of his more progressive opponents.

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Biden “knows how high the stakes are,” campaign spokesman T.J. Ducklo said on Twitter. “As president, Biden would enact a bold policy to tackle climate change in a meaningful and lasting way, and will be discussing the specifics of that plan in the near future.”

“Any assertions otherwise are not accurate,” he added, noting in another tweet that “Reuters got it wrong.”

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump has apparently taken charge of this year’s Fourth of July celebration in Washington, D.C., and will possibly give a personal address, angering some Democrats who fear the president will politicize the holiday.

City officials in the nation’s capital were notified of Trump’s plan to address the nation on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and move the traditional fireworks display from the Capitol Reflecting Pool to the nearby West Potomac Park, the Washington Post reported.

JOHN STOSSEL: THE FOURTH OF JULY IS NOT ABOUT BARBECUES, FIREWORKS OR EVEN PATRIOTISM. IT’S ABOUT THIS…

But the plans, which the administration says will allow more people to attend, have raised logistical concerns among officials as they make preparations for the holiday, which is fast approaching.

“We have a lot of people come to the Fourth of July. Logistically, over the years, the kinks have been worked out,” Mayor Muriel Bowser told the Post. “We don’t want to throw off what already works.”

“We have a lot of people come to the Fourth of July. Logistically, over the years, the kinks have been worked out. We don’t want to throw off what already works.”

— Muriel Bowser, mayor of Washington, D.C.

The move to amend the July 4 celebrations in Washington comes after Trump floated the possibility of holding a military parade, an idea he got when he attended Bastille Day celebrations in France.

But the military parade idea was dropped after senior White House and Pentagon leaders estimated it would cost $92 million.

“When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it. Never let someone hold you up!” Trump tweeted.

TRUMP MILITARY PARADE PLANS UNRAVEL OVER COSTS

Trump’s plans are being criticized not only for imposing a burden on the city logistically, but also for political reasons.

Rep. Betty McCollum, a Minnesota Democrat who chairs the House Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, told the newspaper that Trump’s address would undermine the spirit of the celebration.

“It’s not about any one president. It’s about how our nation came to be, because of a hardy band of brave men and women,” she said.

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“It’s not about any one person, it’s about ‘We, the people.’ And if the president moves to make this about him, I think he will find the America public disappointed and angered by it.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Rashida Tlaib said Thursday the people want to see President Trump impeached and urged her colleagues to take such course of action.

The Michigan Democrat appeared on CNN to discuss the latest impeachment talk after MoveOn.org, a liberal activist group, delivered a flash drive with 10 million signatures calling for Trump’s impeachment.

“What I think is important is to recognize that 10 million people said that we need to hold this president accountable,” Tlaib said about the signatures. “That speaks volumes.”

FRESHMAN REP. RASHIDA TLAIB INTRODUCES RESOLUTION URGING TRUMP IMPEACHMENT

Tlaib noted that the number of signatures gives a mandate for the Congress to go after the president and investigate him.

“Just alone, just think about it: ten million people want us to uphold the United States Constitution. Ten million people want us to investigate this president and whether or not he has violated the United States Constitution and whether or not he’s acting above the law. And I think that is tremendous, you know, a movement that is moving.”

“[The petition is] saying to all of us as members of Congress, please, please do something. Take back our democracy. Get back our country.”

— Rep. Rashida Tlaib

As a swipe at her Democratic colleagues who are wary of going all-out to impeach Trump, Tlaib said that the petition is “saying to all of us as members of Congress, please, please do something. Take back our democracy. Get back our country.”

DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSWOMAN TLAIB ACCUSES ISRAEL OF OPPRESSING, TARGETING ‘PALESTINIAN CHILDREN AND FAMILIES’

She also threw shade on House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., who declared a “constitutional crisis” after voting to hold Attorney General Bill Bar in contempt, though balking at the impeachment option.

Tlaib suggested Nadler is acting based on “political strategy” while she wants to impeach Trump because that is – in her view – the right thing to do.

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“When I look back at this moment in our country, this remarkable moment in our country, I want to look back and say that I did something,” she said. “Right now, doing nothing is not an option, and ten million people just told us, do something.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez might only be a freshman congresswoman, but she could yet be a kingmaker in 2020.

The New York Democrat told reporters she is “entertaining” the idea of endorsing a candidate in the crowded race to win her party’s nomination, and while she hasn’t yet picked a candidate, she believes Sens. Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders are someone she could endorse.

AOC, SANDERS TEAM UP WITH ‘RADICAL’ PLAN TO CAP INTEREST RATES

“What I’d like to see in a presidential candidate is one that has a coherent worldview and logic from which all these policy proposals are coming forward,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “I think Sen. Sanders has that. I also think Sen. Warren has that.”

She went on to add that she also wants to see “working people” in the Democratic primary focusing on combatting income inequality, climate change, and being “bold to really big ideas that are gonna make people lives better.”

“What I’d like to see in a presidential candidate is one that has a coherent worldview and logic from which all these policy proposals are coming forward.”

— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

She didn’t respond to a question whether she would support former Vice President Joe Biden’s candidacy. Ocasio-Cortez has previously said a bid by Biden would be going backward, instead of forward.

“That does not particularly animate right now,” she told Yahoo last month, adding that she has “a lot of issues” with a potential Biden run.

AOC CALLS NEW CAMPAIGN FINANCE COMPLAINT ‘BOGUS’

Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders unveiled a new proposal on Thursday that aims to put a 15 percent cap on credit card interest rates, with the ability of states to establish lower limits if they wish.

Multiple Democratic 2020 candidates also endorsed the Green New Deal, a radical proposal introduced by Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey that aims to transform the economy in an effort to tackle climate change.

Yet while Ocasio-Cortez remains the rising star of the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, it’s likely that some campaigns could see her endorsement a drawback rather than an advantage during the general election against Trump.

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Polls show that Ocasio-Cortez favorability ranking has tanked just months after arriving to Congress, with most of the public – particularly Republicans – viewing her negatively rather than favorably.

Source: Fox News Politics

Leading 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden said this week that the U.S. must provide health care to everyone in the country, “regardless of whether they are documented or undocumented.”

Biden made the remarks while campaigning in Los Angeles, as he fielded questions from the media.

“Look, I think that anyone who is in a situation where they are in need of health care, regardless of whether they are documented or undocumented, we have an obligation to see that they are cared for,” Biden said in response to whether illegal immigrants “should be entitled to federal benefits like Medicare, Medicaid.”

“Look, I think that anyone who is in a situation where they are in need of health care, regardless of whether they are documented or undocumented, we have an obligation to see that they are cared for.”

— Joe Biden

ANITA HILL SLAMS BIDEN IN OP-ED, CLAIMS DEM MIGHT HAVE SLOWED #METOO BY DECADES

“By the way, a significant portion of undocumented folks in this country are there because they overstayed their visas,” the former vice president continued.

“It’s not people breaking down gates coming across the border, so the biggest thing we’ve got to do on this thing is tone down the rhetoric. We know why it’s happening. It’s to create fear and concern.”

Biden’s remarks were likely to somewhat boost his standing among progressive Democrats, many of whom view his candidacy as a step backward — especially with Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren also in the running.

2020 HOPEFUL DELANEY JABS AT FRONT-RUNNING BIDEN: ‘I THINK MY IDEAS ARE BETTER’

The former veep, however, hasn’t yet endorsed Medicare-for-all, a rallying cry of most Democrats running for president in 2020.

During the same campaign stop in California, Biden also accused President Trump of engaging in fear tactics at the U.S.-Mexico border and not delivering solutions.

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“The idea that we are just trying to scare the living devil out of the American public — ‘My God, hordes are coming,’ the way [Trump] characterizes it — is just simply wrong,” Biden said.

He added he will soon release a plan to address the long-running problems at the border. Part of his proposal would call for a way to quickly determine whether an immigrant is qualified to enter the U.S.

Fox News’ Louis Casiano contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Former acting ICE director Tom Homan said on “Fox and Friends” Thursday morning that Congress needs to get its act together amid the news that over 100,000 migrants were apprehended or turned away at the southern U.S. border with Mexico in April.

“First of all, Congress needs to act. Look at those numbers, two thirds of those numbers are family units or Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC). Family units are coming because the word is out you bring a child you won’t be detained,” he said.

“Over 80 percent don’t show up in court and they are going to remain in the United States illegally until the next DACA comes up because this is your next DACA population, these children are brought into the country no fault of their own. If you look at the numbers, this all started in FY2012 and DACA was awarded by the Obama administration. That’s when the surge even started,” he added.

“Over 80 percent don’t show up in court and they are going to remain in the United States illegally until the next DACA comes up because this is your next DACA population, these children are brought into the country no fault of their own.”

— Tom Homan

OVER 100K ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS APPREHENDED OR TURNED AWAY IN APRIL, CBP REVEALS

In the figures released by immigration officials, 109,144 people were encountered trying to enter the U.S. illegally last month. Of those trying to cross, 58,474 were with families, and 8,897 were unaccompanied children.

Another 31,606 were single adults, according to border patrol figures. Of the nearly 110,000, 10,167 people were turned away at ports of entry, as they were deemed “inadmissible” by immigration authorities.

Homan says the reason there were nearly 9,000 children trying to enter the U.S. is due to the laws that provide incentives for parents to leave the fate of their children with smugglers.

“When the FY19 budget was signed, remember, the president shut the border down, put the committee together, came up with a bill. They put language in that bill, Democrats put language in the bill that clearly said ICE cannot take action against a parent responsible for UAC, they couldn’t do any enforcement action at a household of UAC,” Homan said.

APPEALS COURT ALLOWS TRUMP ADMINISTRATION TO SEND BACK ASYLUM SEEKERS TO MEXICO TO WAIT OUT COURT PROCESS

“When that happened, I was screaming that week a lot on this program that that’s going to result in an increase of children being smuggled into the United States because now parents and sponsors who hire a criminal organization to smuggle their child into the country can’t be held accountable. It was ridiculous addition to the bill.”

“When that happened, I was screaming that week a lot on this program that that’s going to result in increase of children being smuggled into the United States because now parents and sponsors who hire a criminal organization to smuggle their child into the country can’t be held accountable.”

— Tom Homan

He added: “I’m not surprised all the UACs are increasing. They put these children in the hands of criminal organizations. Parents and sponsors are here illegally. Their children are in Central America.”

The former ICE Director also said that if Congress isn’t going to its job, “we need to do operationally what Congress has failed to do legislatively.”

“ICE needs to do a nationwide operation. Look for family units and single adults who had their day in court or didn’t show up in court and ordered removed by a federal judge. If those orders don’t mean anything, if those orders aren’t executed there is no integrity to our system,” Homan suggested.

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“I did this three and a half years ago and took a lot of heat from the democratic administration but it worked. Numbers on the borders dropped dramatically almost immediately. We have to show a consequence. Central Americans need to see families coming home. Brian: “

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is set to unveil a “radical” new policy proposal with Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday that will take on the “greed” of the banking and credit card industry.

“New policy proposal dropping tomorrow with a special Senate co-lead,” tweeted Ocasio-Cortez. “It’s radical, which I always love, and we’re keeping more coins in your pocket, which I also love.”

The proposal will be revealed in a Facebook livestream at 12 p.m. EST.

ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ SLAMS GEORGIA’S CONTROVERSIAL ‘HEARTBEAT’ BILL, REFERS TO IT AS ‘BACKDOOR BAN’

A press release from Sanders didn’t divulge any details about the except that the legislation will focus on combating the “the greed of the credit card and banking industries, and to protect consumers across the country.”

Sanders, who has long been a critic of banks and Wall Street, is among the top 2020 presidential candidates, polling just behind former Vice President Joe Biden.

BERNIE SANDERS CAMPAIGN RATIFIES UNION CONTRACT FOR WORKERS

Ocasio-Cortez has also echoed Sanders’ criticism of Wall Street and has been urging Congress to strengthen the regulatory regime of Wall Street.

Given the stakes of the 2020 race, the legislation by Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez is likely to be rolled out more carefully than the New York Democrat’s previous proposal, the Green New Deal.

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The Green New Deal, a radical plan to radically transform the economy, was mocked after the office of Ocasio-Cortez published a Q&A document in which it claimed that it wants to make air travel obsolete and give economic security even to those “unwilling” to work.

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Iconic Watergate reporter Bob Woodward dismissed the Democrats’ assertion that the United States is in a “constitutional crisis” after voting to hold Attorney General Bill Barr in contempt.

House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., declared a “constitutional crisis” after his committee voted to hold Barr in contempt for defying a subpoena for Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s unredacted Russia report and underlying documents.

“We’ve talked for a long time about approaching a constitutional crisis. We are now in it,” Nadler told the press on Wednesday, adding that the U.S. could transition into a tyrannical form government, though balked at the impeachment option.

NADLER DECLARES ‘CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS’ AFTER CONTEMPT VOTE, ACCUSES TRUMP OF ATTACKING ‘ESSENCE OF OUR DEMOCRACY’

But Woodward dismissed Nadler’s exaggerated declaration, saying on CNN that it’s not yet crisis and rather just a “confrontation.”

“I think it’s a constitutional confrontation. I don’t think it’s yet a crisis.”

— Bob Woodward

“I think it’s a constitutional confrontation. I don’t think it’s yet a crisis,” Woodward said. “And this is going to go into the courts and this could take months or a year or more.”

“What I think is interesting, perhaps, to look at is what’s the impact on a factory worker or a farmer in the midwest, as they look at all of this? It’s process, it’s legalistic.”

Woodward continued that what the issue of Trump’s taxes is more important to the people rather than disputes between House Democrats and the executive branch.

“Here we have Trump not paying taxes for years and losing $1 billion, this man, who presented himself as so successful. And then Trump’s response is, well, I was in the real estate business, so avoiding taxes is sport,” the reporter said, referencing a New York Times report.

NY TIMES REPORTS IT FOUND TRUMP TAX DOCUMENTS SHOWING NEARLY $1.2B IN LOSSES BETWEEN 1985 AND 1994

“And somebody’s going to look at that who’s been paying thousands of dollars in taxes, who’s this worker, the traditional base for Trump and I think they’re going to be uncomfortable. I think they’re going to say, hey, wait a minute, what’s going on here?”

Woodward’s comments came after a New York Times report alleged Trump claimed to have lost $1.17 billion from his real estate businesses on his federal income tax returns for the decade between 1985 and 1994.

Woodward also said that the real crisis of the Trump administration is the “governing crisis” due to Trump’s lack of leadership on issues of global importance.

“All these balls in the air,” he said.  “And they are being juggled by perhaps the most unsteady hands we’ve had in the American presidency, ever.”

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“This is a dire situation,” he added, pointing to issues like North Korea or China.

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In the two years since President Trump fired James Comey, the former director of the FBI has gone from the left’s folk hero – rewarded with a book deal for his supposed selfless public service – to someone at the epicenter of an FBI “spying” scandal that threatens to tarnish the bureau’s reputation.

Trump dismissed Comey on May 9, 2017, for his handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.

Following Comey’s ouster, his former boss Robert Mueller was appointed special counsel of the Russia investigation, which went on to find no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia — and couldn’t find sufficient evidence to charge Trump with obstruction of justice.

SEN. JOHN KENNEDY: COMEY IS A ‘HACK POLITICIAN’ WHO HAS TARNISHED THE FBI’S REPUTATION

Initially, Comey enjoyed relative success after losing his job, getting showered with media attention for his anti-Trump talking points. This propped up his book — “A Higher Loyalty,” published last year — for which Comey reportedly received $2 million and which posted sales of 600,000 copies in just one week.

But Comey’s star has undoubtedly faded amid allegations that the FBI under his command not only used an unverified dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele to justify surveillance of Trump campaign official Carter Page, but also that the bureau sent an undercover investigator to meet with ex-Trump aide George Papadopoulos in 2016.

Attorney General Bill Barr alleged, in the wake of the Mueller report, that the bureau engaged in spying against Trump associates during the 2016 presidential campaign.

“I think spying did occur,” Barr said during a hearing on Capitol Hill last month. “The question is whether it was adequately predicated. … Spying on a political campaign is a big deal.”

“I think spying did occur … The question is whether it was adequately predicated. … Spying on a political campaign is a big deal.”

— Attorney General Bill Barr

Barr later clarified in the hearing: “I am not saying that improper surveillance occurred; I’m saying that I am concerned about it and looking into it, that’s all.”

COMEY DEFENDS FBI’S INVESTIGATION IN RESPONSE TO NYT ‘SPYING’ REPORT

Comey dismissed Barr’s comments at the time, saying he “never thought of” electronic surveillance as “spying.”

“When I hear that kind of language used, it’s concerning because the FBI and the Department of Justice conduct court-ordered electronic surveillance,” Comey added. “I have never thought of that as spying.”

But Comey was put on the defensive again following a recent bombshell New York Times report detailing the FBI efforts to investigate the Trump campaign.

The FBI reportedly sent a woman to meet with Papadopoulos at a bar in London during the campaign. The woman, who identified herself as Azra Turk, asked Papadopoulos point-blank if Trump was collaborating with Russians to swing the 2016 election.

Comey issued only a scant defense of the issue, telling Los Angeles radio station KNX 1070 AM that the practice was justified due to the ongoing threats from Russia.

“Really? What would you have the FBI do? We discover in the middle of June of 2016 that the Russians were engaged in a massive effort to mess with this democracy to interfere in the election,” Comey said.

“We’re focused on that and at the end of July we learn that a Trump campaign adviser — two months earlier, before any of this was public — had talked to a Russian representative about the fact that the Russians had dirt on Hillary Clinton and wanted to arrange to share it with the Trump campaign.”

BARR ASSEMBLES ‘TEAM’ TO LOOK INTO COUNTERINTELLIGENCE INVESTIGATION ON TRUMP CAMPAIGN IN 2016, OFFICIAL SAYS

He added: “What should the FBI do when it gets that information? It should investigate to figure out whether any Americans are hooked up with this massive interference effort. And that’s what we did.”

But as Comey continues making the rounds to publicly defend his actions as FBI director — including plans to participate in a town hall event on CNN on Thursday night — he’s likely to face further questions and controversies amid Barr’s formation of a team to “investigate the investigators.”

A Trump administration official briefed on the matter told Fox News that Barr assembled a “team” to investigate the origins of the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign.

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Fox News also has been told the Justice Department’s inspector general (IG) was looking separately into whether Comey mishandled classified information by including a variety of sensitive matters in his private memos that include the name and code name of a confidential human source.

Fox News’ Gregg Re, Jake Gibson and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer attacked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s speech to move on from the Russia controversy after Robert Mueller’s report as “despicable.”

McConnell gave a scorching floor speech on Tuesday, accusing Democrats of rooting for a “national crisis” for political gain and appealed to lawmakers to move on from the Russia controversy now that the Mueller report showed no collusion, declaring the issue “Case closed.”

MCCONNELL RAILS AGAINST MUELLER REPORT POLITICS IN BLISTERING FLOOR SPEECH: ‘CASE CLOSED’

“This investigation went on for two years. It is finally over. Many Americans were waiting to see how elected officials would respond,” McConnell said.

“With an exhaustive investigation complete, would the country finally unify and confront the real challenges before us? Would we finally be able to move on from partisan paralysis and breathless conspiracy theorizing? Or would we remain consumed by unhinged partisanship and keep guiding ourselves to the point that Putin and his agents need only sit on the sidelines and watch us as their job is actually done for them? Regrettably the answer is pretty obvious.”

Despite the pleas for bipartisanship, the speech was met with fury among Democrats, with Schumer assailing McConnell in an interview on MSNBC, saying “what Leader McConnell did today on the floor was nothing short of despicable.”

“To say that it’s over, case closed, when we haven’t even begun to investigate the report and Mueller hasn’t testified – and it’s who Mueller knows what the report says, not Barr’s spin on that report – to not see the underlying documentation and how deeply Russia affected things and what they might do in 2020. For McConnell to do this, for Trump to do this is despicable,” he said.

REACTING TO MCCONNELL, BAIER SAYS HOUSE DEMS ‘DON’T BELIEVE THE CASE IS CLOSED’

“For McConnell to run away from this – he’s done a lot of very, very bad things, but this is one of the most despicable,” he continued.

“For McConnell to run away from this – he’s done a lot of very, very bad things, but this is one of the most despicable.”

— Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

“We have bipartisan bills ready to go forward… that would stop the Russians from interfering in large part in our elections,” Schumer added. “He won’t even let there be a debate on them. That’s a disgrace.”

In the same speech on Tuesday, McConnell slammed his Democratic colleagues for extending the political battle over the Russia case and suggested that they actually wanted Mueller to find illegal collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

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“They seemed to be hoping for a national crisis for the sake of their own politics,” he said.

He also went on to accuse the Obama administration let Russia “get away with almost anything” and said that Democrats are “angrier at [Attorney General] Bill Barr for doing his job than they are at Vladimir Putin.”

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said President Trump may be “vulnerable to shady activity” after a report claiming he lost billions of dollars from his businesses over three decades ago.

The New York Democrat offered up her two cents on Twitter concerning a New York Times report that alleged that Trump claimed to have lost $1.17 billion from his real estate businesses on his federal income tax returns for the decade between 1985 and 1994.

“Wouldn’t you think someone who personally lost over a BILLION dollars (‘more than nearly any other taxpayer in America’) be vulnerable to shady activity to get out of that hole?” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted on Tuesday.

“If they became the most powerful public servant in America, wouldn’t you want to see their taxes?” Ocasio-Cortez added, echoing the House Democrats’ rallying cry to reveal Trump’s tax returns, a demand Trump so far rejected.

NY TIMES REPORTS IT FOUND TRUMP TAX DOCUMENTS SHOWING NEARLY $1.2B IN LOSSES BETWEEN 1985 AND 1994

The report claimed that after comparing Trump’s financial information with other high-income earners, the president “appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer.” Due to the losses, Trump legally avoided paying income tax in at least eight of the ten years in question.

House Democrats have long targeted Trump’s tax returns as he broke the tradition and declined to reveal them during the 2016 campaign. Presidential candidates, however, aren’t required by law to disclose their historic tax returns.

The House Ways and Means Committee has demanded the IRS to provide Trump’s personal and business returns for 2013 through 2018.

MULVANEY VOWS DEMS WILL ‘NEVER’ SEE TRUMP’S TAX RETURNS, DESPITE RENEWED PUSH

But Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said last month that Democrats will “never” Trump’s tax returns.

“Oh no, never – nor should they,” Mulvaney told “Fox News Sunday”. “That’s an issue that was already litigated during the election. Voters knew the president could have given his tax returns. They knew that he didn’t and they elected him anyway.”

On Monday, Mulvaney, who’s also the Treasury Secretary, formally refused to release Trump’s tax returns, saying the request “lacks a legitimate legislative purpose.”

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Democrats are mulling their next move and are reportedly considering to subpoena the IRS for the returns or to file a lawsuit.

Fox News’ Samuel Chamberlain and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

A self-described “queer feminist mermaid” is running to unseat U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, prompted by Collins’ vote last year that helped to confirm Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Bre Kidman, 31, is the first person to throw her name into the 2020 race for Collins’ Senate seat as Democrats, who initially warned of recruiting a strong candidate to run against the incumbent, so far haven’t found a credible challenger.

SEN. SUSAN COLLINS ALREADY FACING POST-KAVANAUGH WAVE OF POTENTIAL DEM CHALLENGERS

Collins took a political hit at home for voting to confirm Kavanaugh, seeing her approval rating decline temporarily after the vote. But she has since rebounded and her latest approval rating indicates that more than half of Maine residents support her, according to the Morning Consult.

Yet Kidman, a lawyer who was born female but doesn’t use feminine pronouns and instead prefers “they or their,” claims the senator can be defeated.

“Like all other politicians, whether or not they want to admit it, I’m a human being who has grown and changed over the years,” Kidman told the Sun Journal of Lewiston. “I am funny. I’m weird. I’m serious. I’m happy. I’m sad. I’m a lot of different things.”

“Like all other politicians, whether or not they want to admit it, I’m a human being who has grown and changed over the years. I am funny. I’m weird. I’m serious. I’m happy. I’m sad. I’m a lot of different things.”

— Bre Kidman, U.S. Senate candidate in Maine

“And I want to be in a culture where it’s OK to be a lot of different things and also take part in building what we as a country are.”

But Kidman’s social media posts are likely to be a hindrance for the campaign rather than an advantage. “Criminal defense attorney by day & radical fat queer/performance artist/model/musician/activist most other times,” the candidate’s Facebook reads.

On the website for the Maine Educationalists on Sexual Harmony (MESH), Kidman is labeled as a “queer feminist lawyer, mermaid, writer, activist, and artist,” according to the Washington Free Beacon.

A poster for Democratic Senate hopefulBre Kidman’s performance art show earlier this year.

A poster for Democratic Senate hopefulBre Kidman’s performance art show earlier this year. (Facebook)

The Senate hopeful told the outlet that mermaid is “an artistic identity, not a serious identity … I’m a playful person, I’m not going to pretend I’m all serious all the time, because I’m not. I’m mermaid-esque in nature.”

SENATE DEMS’ SOCIAL MEDIA POLL FINDS MORE USERS WANT SUPREME COURT JUSTICES LIKE KAVANAUGH THAN GINSBURG

The work Kidman provided to MESH included teaching people about consent through a body-positive fashion show, and sex education through burlesque

“I’m not hiding them for a reason,” Kidman added. “All the work I’ve done has been in the interest of helping people make their life work better, and I don’t think that’s in contrast with a run for office.”

“I’m not hiding them for a reason. All the work I’ve done has been in the interest of helping people make their life work better, and I don’t think that’s in contrast with a run for office.”

— Bre Kidman

Kidman is currently working to raise funds for her campaign, hoping to collect at least a third of $500,000, the sum required to be competitive during the June 2020 Democratic primary. A meeting with the Democratic Party of Maine is also on the books regarding the candidacy.

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During the Kavanaugh saga in the Senate, a liberal group started a fundraiser to bankroll Collins’ future opponent. The campaign so far raised nearly $3.8 million and will be awarded to the winner of the Democratic primary.

“I do think I can be competitive in the primary and the general, and party support would make it easier, which is why I decided to join the party system,” Kidman told the Free Beacon. “Maine is in a unique situation because a lot of people donated to a crowd-fund that will go to the Democratic nominee.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, who assailed her opponent Joe Biden for holding a “swanky private fundraiser” after announcing his candidacy, took money from the same donors during her 2018 Senate election, a lawyer who co-hosted the Biden event says.

Warren shared a scathing message in the wake Biden’s entry into the 2020 race last month, informing her supporters that the Philadelphia fundraiser he attended featured Comcast executive David Cohen and health insurance executive Daniel Hilferty.

“In the first 24 hours of his presidential campaign (welcome to the race!), Joe Biden raised $6.3 million,” Warren’s email read wrote. “How did Joe Biden raise so much money in one day? Well, it helps that he hosted a swanky private fundraiser for wealthy donors at the home of the guy who runs Comcast’s lobbying shop.”

“How did Joe Biden raise so much money in one day? Well, it helps that he hosted a swanky private fundraiser for wealthy donors at the home of the guy who runs Comcast’s lobbying shop.”

— Sen. Elizabeth Warren

WARREN BLASTS BIDEN’S ‘SWANKY PRIVATE FUNDRAISER’ WITH LOBBYISTS AFTER LAUNCH OF HIS WH BID

But Warren’s attacks appear to be awkward as she apparently accepted campaign contributions from the many of the same donors during her 2018 Senate race.

“I was pleased to support Senator Warren, I think she’s a terrific senator, but I think it makes no sense for her to criticize Biden for taking checks at the maximum allowed,” Kenneth Jarin, a lawyer who was a host for Biden’s fundraiser, told the Philadelphia Inquirer, adding that her attacks were “preposterous.”

“I know that she took lots and lots of $2,700 checks raising money for her Senate campaigns,” he added.

“I know that she took lots and lots of $2,700 checks raising money for her Senate campaigns.”

— Kenneth Jarin, co-host of Biden fundraiser

According to the newspaper, the same donors who appeared at Biden’s fundraiser also attended Warren’s fundraisers at a Center City Philadelphia law firm last year and at the city’s Rittenhouse Hotel in 2017, donating thousands of dollars to her campaign.

ELIZABETH WARREN CALLS FOR TRUMP IMPEACHMENT, DISMISSES MCCONNELL’S ‘CASE CLOSED’

Former Gov. Ed Rendell and Stephen Cozen, a Center City law partner, both organized the recent fundraiser for Biden in Philadelphia and a 2018 fundraiser for Warren, who was seeking donations up to $5,400.

Rendell and Cozen reportedly gave Warren $4,500 and $2,500, respectively, for her Senate campaign. Daniel Berger, a managing shareholder of the firm, gave the maximum allowed, $5,400. He recently donated to Biden’s campaign $2,800.

But Berger somewhat defended Warren’s attacks, saying that the wealthy who donated to her in 2018 were driven by a pure belief in her rather than because of some ulterior motives.

“At the Biden event, there were people who genuinely support Joe, like I do for idealistic reasons, and then there were corporate people who were giving money because they have an interest,” Berger told the outlet.

“There were no such people at the event that I hosted for Warren. These were people who genuinely agree with her on her positions and policy issues.”

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Warren’s attacks against Biden’s fundraising came amid reports that Biden’s campaign raised a massive $6.3 million in the first 24 hours, beating his opponents’ first-day fundraising efforts.

The latest polls indicate that Biden is the leading 2020 Democrat favored to win the party’s nomination. Warren, meanwhile, is often around fourth place, behind Sen. Bernie Sanders and insurgent Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

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Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano said Democrats’ threats of putting Attorney General Bill Barr behind bars for not complying with their subpoenas are “absurd.”

Napolitano told “Fox and Friends” Tuesday morning that the threats aren’t serious as it will be up to the courts to decide whether Democrats have legal standing to pursue such course of action that hasn’t been used since the 1930s.

IMPRISONING BILL BARR IS LEFT’S NEW RALLYING CRY: ‘HAVE HIM LOCKED UP’

“When two branches of government disagree who resolves it? The other branch. There is a very easy way out of this,” he said.

“The House Judiciary committee serves a subpoena on the attorney general. He believes the laws which he has sworn to uphold prevent him from complying with it completely as they want him. You take this subpoena, you make a motion to quash it – that is to suppress it – and a judge calls it and then you follow what the judge’s ruling is.”

“If you don’t like the judge’s ruling. You appeal it. Will this make its way to the Supreme Court? I doubt it, but it could. The judiciary is the branch that decides what the law means, what the constitution means and how it should be interpreted rather than these threats about locking up the attorney general, that’s absurd.”

The judiciary is the branch that decides what the law means, what the constitution means and how it should be interpreted rather than these threats about locking up the attorney general, that’s absurd.”

— Andrew Napolitano

Napolitano’s comments come amid the left’s new rallying cry after the attorney general refused to appear before the House Judiciary Committee last week amid disagreements over the format of the hearing.

Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., also imposed a Monday morning deadline for Barr to turn over the full, unredacted Mueller report and additional files – a deadline the DOJ apparently missed, prompting Nadler to schedule a Wednesday vote on contempt proceedings against Barr.

MEDIA TRIES TO TURN UP HEAT ON BARR, WITH CNN’S BLITZER ASKING IF DEMS WOULD PUT AG BEHIND BARS

Committee member Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., over the weekend urged the panel to specifically pursue “inherent contempt,” calling for Barr to be arrested by the Sergeant at Arms and be physically brought before the committee to testify.

Former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich, meanwhile, said last week that the House can use various measures, including arrests or even jail time, to force Barr to comply with their requests.

But Napolitano said that Democrats’ warnings of holding Barr in contempt are a largely symbolic move that is being used a “political weapon.”

“Holding someone in contempt is a footnote in history,” he said. “In some states, it could impair your ability to practice law. I doubt that [Barr] is worried about that.”

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“But they shouldn’t use contempt as a political weapon. They should only use it when someone is truly defying them. So, when the law says do this and the subpoena says do that and this and that are the opposite. You present it to a judge” he added.

Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Joe Biden may be leading in 2020 Democratic primary polls, but he’s struggling to get a footing in the digital space, with a parody anti-Biden website featuring him touching women and girls being the top search result on Google.

Many social media users pointed out in recent days that Biden’s official 2020 campaign website is hard to find in a Google search – instead parody website JoeBiden.info is topping the results, giving an impression that it’s the main site.

BIDEN MISTAKENLY CLAIMS MARGARET THATCHER, WHO DIED IN 2013, IS WORRIED ABOUT TRUMP

The website, which looks like a campaign site, features images and GIFs of Biden touching women and girls, a behavior for which he recently apologized after multiple women came forward detailing the uncomfortable encounters with him.

“Uncle Joe is back and ready to take a hands-on approach to America’s problems!” the site reads. “Joe Biden has a good feel for the American people and knows exactly what they really want deep down. He’s happy to open up and reveal himself to voters and will give a pounding to anybody who gets in his way!”

The website goes on to detail common criticisms of Biden’s track record as a U.S. senator, including his support for the 1994 crime bill that paved way to mass incarceration or his vote to support the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

It also features more recent controversies, including the alleged shady dealings in Ukraine, where Hunter Biden, his son, was employed at a Ukrainian energy company as a board member while the Obama administration was mulling a course of action amid Russia’s invasion in Eastern Ukraine.

Biden also publicly admitted that he threatened the Ukrainian president to fire a top prosecutor, who happened at the time to have been investigating corruption of the company his son was a board member.

The prosecutor, who was fired after the threat, was reportedly facing criticisms back then by both Ukrainians and international officials for not bringing enough corruption prosecutions. Biden’s push to oust the prosecutor may have not been influenced by the probe of the company his son was involved in.

BIDEN FACES SCRUTINY FOR DEMANDING OUSTER OF UKRAINE OFFICIAL PROBING FIRM THAT EMPLOYED HIS SON

It remains unclear who created the JoeBiden.info website. Fox News’ review of registry history shows that the website has been frequently changing hands and up until 2013 it looked like a legitimate website for Biden.

Since at least 2015, however, the website turned into a parody site, supposedly detailing the gaffes of Biden. Fox News’ contacted the individual who appears to have transformed the address into a mock site.

The person did tell CNBC that he’s a “closet libertarian” and that the website has tricked multiple people into thinking that it was a legitimate Biden’s 2020 campaign page.

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“I would assume Biden’s campaign knows about it though by now,” the person wrote. “I get thousands of Biden supporters coming to the site every day who fail to realize that it is a parody — asking for volunteer information, donation information, suggestions on how to handle the [Anita Hill] situation, or criticizing his use of ‘All men are created equal’ — no joke. ”

The site has a disclaimer noting that it’s not funded “by any candidate, committee, organization, or PAC.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Rep. Ilhan Omar branded herself as President Trump’s “biggest nemesis” because she’s a “nightmare” for the White House that wants to use her “identity to marginalize our communities.”

The Minnesota Democrat, who was elected to Congress just five months ago and has been facing persistent controversy, made the remarks during an interview amid her sparring with the Trump administration.

“This is a president who has come to power vilifying and demonizing immigrants and refugees. He proudly said we should halt Muslims from entering our country. It’s not a surprise that he finds his biggest nemesis in me,” Omar wrote in a tweet on Monday.

ILHAN OMAR’S TWEET ON ISRAEL-GAZA VIOLENCE SPARKS CONDEMNATION FROM REPUBLICANS

In the interview with HuffPost, she doubled-down on calling herself Trump’s biggest nemesis.

“He clearly has a disdain for black women who see themselves as equal to him. And so, for many people, it’s not a surprise that he finds his biggest nemesis in me,” Omar said.

“Clearly, I am a nightmare ― because he can’t stop really thinking about ways that he can continue to use my identity to marginalize our communities.”

“Clearly, I am a nightmare ― because he can’t stop really thinking about ways that he can continue to use my identity to marginalize our communities.”

— Ilhan Omar

Omar’s remarks follow Trump public condemnation of her after revelation that she flippantly described the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks as “some people did something” during a fundraiser for a Muslim group back in March.

VP PENCE SLAMS ILHAN OMAR FOR ACCUSING TRUMP ADMIN OF ‘BULLYING’ VENEZUELA: ‘DOESN’T KNOW WHAT SHE’S TALKING ABOUT

Trump caught some flak after he tweeted a video of those comments by her edited together with the images of the twin towers burning down during the attacks. “WE WILL NEVER FORGET!” he wrote in the tweet.

More recently, both Vice President Mike Pence and State Secretary Mike Pompeo called out the Democrat after she defended socialist dictator Nicholas Maduro in Venezuela and said that the U.S. actions are responsible for the misery in the country.

“A lot of the policies that we have put in place has kind of helped lead the devastation in Venezuela and we have sort of set the stage for where we are arriving today,” she told progressive “Democracy Now!” program last week.

“This particular bullying and the use of sanctions to eventually intervene and make regime change really does not help the people of countries like Venezuela and it certainly does not help and is not in the interest of the United States,” she added.

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Pence said “The congresswoman doesn’t know what she’s talking about,” while Pompeo called Omar’s comments “ignorant” and “disgusting.”

Source: Fox News Politics

A 1987 clip of Joe Biden has resurfaced, showing him exaggerating his academic record, boasting that he graduated “in the top half of my class” – before he later admitted that he graduated 76th in a class of 85.

The former vice president, who’s currently the leading 2020 presidential candidate, was running back then for the Democratic Party’s nomination for president when he got combative and made the blunder amid questioning by a reporter about his academic credentials.

JOE BIDEN’S SON INVESTED IN CHINESE APP THAT SPIES ON MUSLIMS, AS US CONDEMNS CHINA OVER ‘CONCENTRATION CAMPS’

“I think I have a much higher I.Q. than you do I suspect. I went to law school on a full academic scholarship, the only one in my class to have a full academic scholarship,” he told the reporter during a campaign stop in Claremont, New Hampshire.

“In the first year of the law school, I decided I didn’t want to be in law school and ended up in the bottom two-thirds of my class,” he continued. “And then I decided to stay, went back to law school, and in fact ended up in the top half of my class.”

“And then I decided to stay, went back to law school, and in fact ended up in the top half of my class.”

— Joe Biden

PENTAGON DISPUTES BIDEN’S ASSESSMENT OF CHINA, SAYS COUNTRY IS A ‘STRATEGIC COMPETITOR’

He added that he was an “outstanding student in the political science department” and “graduated with three degrees from college.”

Shortly after making the claims, Biden had to come out with a confession that he lied about his academic record and actually graduated 76th in a class of 85.

“I did not graduate in the top half of my class at law school and my recollection of this was inaccurate,” he told the New York Times in a statement.

“I did not graduate in the top half of my class at law school and my recollection of this was inaccurate.”

— Joe Biden

“I graduated from the University of Delaware with a double major in history and political science. My reference to degrees at the Claremont event was intended to refer to these majors – I said ‘three’ and should have said ‘two,’” he added, though the newspaper points out that Biden actually received a single B.A. degree in history and political science.

During an interview with the Times, he also didn’t dispute the reports that he actually went on the law school “on half scholarship based on financial need” rather than full scholarship as he claimed.

“My recollection is – and I’d have to confirm this – but I don’t recall paying any money to go to law school,” he said.

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Biden’s 1988 run for Democratic nomination for president ended shortly after the controversy, which also included accusations of plagiarism in his academic work and campaign speeches.

The video resurfaced amid mounting criticism against Biden and his decades-long career in politics that include his support for tough-on-crime bill in the 1990s and his treatment of Anita Hill. Supporters of more progressive candidates such as Sen. Bernie Sanders say Biden’s candidacy is a step backward for the party.

Source: Fox News Politics

An investment fund backed by Hunter Biden, son of 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden, invested in a surveillance system used to spy on Muslims in China, a new report claims.

The former vice president has been facing scrutiny over his son’s business dealings in Ukraine and other countries, with reports focusing on Hunter Biden’s role in the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings.

The company employed the younger Biden as a board member as the U.S. and the Obama administration were mulling a course of action amid Russia’s invasion in Eastern Ukraine. Biden also apparently threatened the Ukrainian president to fire a prosecutor who happens to have been investigating corruption of Burisma.

PENTAGON DISPUTES BIDEN’S ASSESSMENT OF CHINA, SAYS COUNTRY IS A ‘STRATEGIC COMPETITOR’

Dec. 4, 2013: Vice President Joe Biden, left, waves as he walks out of Air Force Two with his granddaughter Finnegan Biden and son Hunter Biden at the airport in Beijing. (Associated Press)

Dec. 4, 2013: Vice President Joe Biden, left, waves as he walks out of Air Force Two with his granddaughter Finnegan Biden and son Hunter Biden at the airport in Beijing. (Associated Press)

BIDEN FACES SCRUTINY FOR DEMANDING OUSTER OF UKRAINE OFFICIAL PROBING FIRM THAT EMPLOYED HIS SON

But Hunter’s investments go farther to the east, drawing scrutiny over his involvement in China amid a controversy over his father’s dismissive comments on the campaign trail about the potential threats China poses to the U.S.

According to the Intercept, Hunter’s investment company in China, known as Bohai Harvest RST, invested in Face++, a mobile phone app built by the Chinese government to introduce a mass surveillance state and spy on its citizens.

The application has been used to spy on Muslims in China’s western province of Xinjiang, where an estimated 1 million Muslims are held in “re-education” camps, providing authorities access to data that shows personal information such as their religious activity, blood type and usage of utilities.

The U.S. government on Friday criticized China’s mass detention of Muslims.

“The (Chinese) Communist Party is using the security forces for mass imprisonment of Chinese Muslims in concentration camps,” Randall Schriver, who leads Asia policy at the U.S. Defense Department, said during a briefing, according to Reuters. He added that the number of detained Muslims could be “closer to 3 million citizens.”

“The (Chinese) Communist Party is using the security forces for mass imprisonment of Chinese Muslims in concentration camps.”

— State Department’s Randall Schriver

CHINA’S ‘VAST, SECRET SYSTEM’ OF AI REPORTEDLY TRACKS AND CONTROLS UIGHURS, A LARGELY MUSLIM MINORITY

The company also consists of a network of other funds that make other investments, making Hunter Biden an influential businessman in China, according to the outlet, which somewhat explains Bohai Harvest’s dependence on an international subsidiary of the state-owned Bank of China to finance its investments.

The revelation comes as Biden caught flak on the campaign trail after expressing lack of concern over China as a global competitor to the U.S. and mocked those taking the Chinese threat seriously at a rally on Wednesday.

“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man!” Biden exclaimed. “The fact that they have this great division between the China Sea and the mountains in the East — I mean in the West. They can’t figure out how they’re going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us.”

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Reacting to those remarks, President Trump said Biden was among many politicians who were  “naïve” regarding China.

“For somebody to be so naive, and say China’s not a problem – if Biden actually said that, that’s a very dumb statement,” Trump said.

Source: Fox News Politics

The Tennessee Democrat who ate Kentucky Fried Chicken as a jab at Attorney General Bill Barr for skipping a Congressional hearing, has been blasted by “Fox Nation” personalities Diamond and Silk as “racially insensitive.”

Rep. Steve Cohen grabbed headlines Thursday after appearing on Capitol Hill with a bucket of fried chicken and a ceramic chicken statue on Thursday to mock Barr for being “too chicken” after the attorney general did not appear for his scheduled hearing before the House Judiciary Committee.

DEMOCRATIC REP. STEVE COHEN EATS KFC TO MOCK AG WILLIAM BARR FOR SKIPPING HEARING

US Congressman Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., ate chicken during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

US Congressman Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., ate chicken during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (Getty Images)

But Diamond and Silk told “Fox and Friends” on Friday morning the joke may have been “racially insensitive” and asked to imagine a scenario in which a Republican would be doing that.

“I want you all to understand the reason why the attorney general is experiencing all of this slander is because the Democrats are afraid,” Diamond said.

“They are getting caught up in the shenanigans who orchestrated and masterminded this Russia witch-hunt hoax. And once that comes out, I mean, it’s going to blow up in their faces. So what they are going to try to do, they are going to try to smear him. They smear him because they fear him.”

NADLER SLAMS BARR’S DECISION TO SKIP HOUSE HEARING, THREATENS CONTEMPT CITATION: ‘HE IS TERRIFIED

Barr skipped the testimony on Thursday following the contentious Senate hearing on Wednesday, with sparks flying over the handling of the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., left, laughs with Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., right, after Cohen arrived with a bucked of fried chicken and a prop chicken as Attorney General William Barr will not appear before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., left, laughs with Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., right, after Cohen arrived with a bucked of fried chicken and a prop chicken as Attorney General William Barr will not appear before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y, suggested holding Barr both in contempt of Congress and also issue a subpoena to have him testify.

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“They fear him because is he going to get to the truth. This is not about the attorney general taking up for president trump. He taking up for the truth. He is putting the truth and facts out there. That’s what the American people want to see him do,” the “Fox Nation” duo added.

Source: Fox News Politics

A former assistant secretary of state for President George W. Bush slammed Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden for dismissing the threat of China, saying the former vice president has been on the wrong side of foreign policy issues for the last four decades.

“On a personal level is he a friendly guy, but he has empirically had poor judgment particularly on foreign policy.. the examples are numerous,” Robert Charles said Friday on “Fox and Friends.”

“Interestingly, Robert Gates in his book who criticizes almost nobody … noted that ‘Joe Biden has been wrong on almost every foreign policy and national security issue for the last four decades.’”

“Interestingly, Robert Gates in his book who criticizes almost nobody … noted that ‘Joe Biden has been wrong on almost every foreign policy and national security issue for the last four decades.’”

— Robert Charles

AS BIDEN DOWNPLAYS CHINA THREAT, ROMNEY HAS A NEW WARNING

Biden drew bipartisan fury after expressing lack of concern over as a global competitor to the U.S. and mocked those taking the Chinese threat at a rally on Wednesday.

“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man!” Biden exclaimed. “The fact that they have this great division between the China Sea and the mountains in the East — I mean in the West. They can’t figure out how they’re going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what, they’re not competition for us.”

Reacting to those remarks, Trump said Biden was among many politicians “naïve” over China. “For somebody to be so naive, and say China’s not a problem – if Biden actually said that, that’s a very dumb statement.”

Charles went on to list Biden’s foreign policy failures, ranging from opposition to military programs that brought down the Soviet Union to opposing the Usama Bin Laden raid.

“If you go back in time this is a guy who wanted to divide up Iraq. He opposed the Bin Laden raid. In favor of the phony Iran deal and sending cash to them,” the former assistant secretary of state said.

TRUMP TELLS DEMS ‘IT’S OVER,’ SAYS MCGAHN WON’T TESTIFY, HITS BIDEN’S ‘VERY DUMB STATEMENT’ IN FOX NEWS INTERVIEW

“Back in 1979, this is a guy who celebrated the Ayatollahs coming to power because he thought that was going to bring human rights. This is a guy that opposed the defense buildup of Ronald Reagan. He opposed the B-1. He opposed the B-2 that brought down … that policy direction brought down the Soviet Union. He opposed the MX missiles.”

“This is a country that right now kills about 13 million children through infanticide or abortion a year on their one child policy. They have about a million peaceful Muslims in prison camps up in the northwest for reeducation as good communists. They execute about 2400 of their people annually, a lot of them for dissidence.”

— Robert Charles

He went on to say that China, contrary to Biden, is “truly our number one potential adversary and our number one competitor in the world” and thinking otherwise is “beyond naïve.”

“This is a country that right now kills about 13 million children through infanticide or abortion a year on their one-child policy. They have about a million peaceful Muslims in prison camps up in the northwest for reeducation as good communists. They execute about 2400 of their people annually, a lot of them for dissidence,” Charles said.

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“They have islands in the South China Sea that they built for disruption of international trade. They are pushing the limits on super computing to hack us. They have space weapons that they have tested.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Former Vice President Joe Biden joined a Democratic chorus calling for the resignation of Attorney General William Barr, despite the fact he once referred to him as “a heck of an honorable guy.”

Biden’s call for the attorney general’s head came after multiple 2020 Democratic candidates came out urging Barr to resign in the wake of revelations that Mueller told Barr that his summary of the report “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of the Russia investigation report.

“I think he’s lost the confidence of the American people. I think he should,” Biden, the leading 2020 candidate, told a reporter in Iowa after being asked whether Barr should resign from the post.

“I think he’s lost the confidence of the American people. I think he should.”

— Joe Biden

AS BIDEN DOWNPLAYS CHINA THREAT, ROMNEY HAS A NEW WARNING

But Biden’s call for resignation may prove to be awkward as he previously lauded Barr during the confirmation hearing back in 1991, when he presided over the Senate Judiciary Committee that went on to unanimously confirm him as the attorney general of the Bush administration.

“It’s a presumptuous thing for me to say but I personally like you, I think you’re a heck of an honorable guy, I think you’re person when I can work with and you’ve demonstrated that,” Biden said.

“When I say can work with I don’t mean you do it our way I mean you when you sit down and negotiate you genuinely negotiate.”

Democrats say the resignation is warranted because Barr allegedly suppressed the Mueller report, and that he cleared President Trump of obstruction of justice charges without looking into the Mueller report’s underlying evidence, a practice Barr says is typical within the Department of Justice.

DOJ CALLS OUT DEMS FOR IGNORING LESS-REDACTED MUELLER REPORT, SERVING SUBPOENA INSTEAD

“AG Barr is a disgrace, and his alarming efforts to suppress the Mueller report show that he’s not a credible head of federal law enforcement,” Elizabeth Warren tweeted. “He should resign — and based on the actual facts in the Mueller report, Congress should begin impeachment proceedings against the President.”

Sen. Kamala Harris, meanwhile, criticized Barr after he told her during the testimony that he didn’t look into the underlying evidence before deciding not to charge the president.

“He made a decision and didn’t review the evidence,” Harris told reporters after the hearing, according to Politico. “No prosecutor worth her salt would make a decision about whether the president of the United States was involved in an obstruction of justice without reviewing the evidence.”

She later tweeted: “What I just saw from the Attorney General is unacceptable. Barr must resign now.”

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Sens. Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand also jumped to demand Barr’s resignation, with Gillibrand saying “We can’t trust him to tell the truth, and these embarrassing displays of propaganda have to stop.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Democratic presidential candidate Eric Swalwell has been roasted after stumbling over his knowledge of the Constitution in a bid to score political points.

Swalwell, a California lawmaker who launched his bid to become the president last month, has been struggling to get a footing in the crowded Democratic primary, with 19 other Democrats overshadowing him in both the money raised and policy ideas.

TREY GOWDY: ‘PRESIDENT ERIC SWALWELL, THAT OUGHT TO SCARE THE EVER-LIVING HELL OUT OF YOU’

But the Congressman remains unabated and has repeatedly courted progressives as his supporters, promising to select a woman as his running mate because he’s a “white man” who knows “where I can’t speak to someone else’s experience.”

On Tuesday, Swalwell ramped up the effort, issuing a tweet reading: “Do you know how many times the word ‘Woman’ is mentioned in the Constitution? Zero.”

“That is unacceptable. Women must be equally represented and equally protected,” he added, advocating for the Equal Right Amendment, a suggested amendment to the Constitution that would guarantee equal legal rights to everyone no matter their sex.

Swalwell’s tweet shortly caused a backlash after many pointed that the word “man” also doesn’t appear in the Constitution.

“Do you know how many times the word ‘Man’ is mentioned in the Constitution? Zero,” fired back the co-founder of the Federalist. “There’s dumb and then there’s ‘can’t read or use CTRL+F before tweeting’ dumb.”

“As a woman I find this so insulting, Eric. You must really think we’re stupid to try and sell this ridiculous rhetoric,” another Twitter user wrote.

SWALWELL REFUSES TO ANSWER TRUMP ‘RUSSIAN ASSET’ QUESTION DESPITE MUELLER REPORT

“It gets exhausting to be constantly told by men what an oppressed victim I am,” seconded writer Kelsey Bolar.

Heritage Foundation’s Amy Swearer meanwhile pointed out that the “The words ‘people,’ ‘person,’ and ‘citizens’ are used dozens of times, and the last time I checked women are all three of those things.”

She added: “It’s patronizing (and worse, dehumanizing) to suggest that we’re not equally people or citizens.”

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Still, while Swalwell’s chances in the primary remain low, earlier this week he qualified to the Democratic presidential primary debates after polling at least 1 percent in three polls.

The California Democrat has been a leading proponent of the claim that President Trump and his campaign colluded with the Russian government.

But following the Robert Mueller report that found couldn’t establish such evidence, Swalwell continued to double down and said the president acts in the interests of Russia.

Source: Fox News Politics


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