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Caitlin Clark selected by Indiana Fever with No. 1 pick in 2024 WNBA Draft

Eight days after completing one of the greatest collegiate basketball careers ever recorded, Caitlin Clark was selected with the No. 1 pick in Monday’s WNBA Draft by the Indiana Fever.

Clark is poised to not only help the Fever return to the postseason for the first time since 2016, but also use her star power to jolt the WNBA at a critical juncture in its history.

“I think more than anything I’m just really excited,” Clark told NBC News this past weekend.

Read the rest of the story at The Athletic

Johnson Says House Will Vote on Stalled Aid to Israel and Ukraine

House Speaker Mike Johnson and entourage
House Speaker Mike Johnson and entourage

Speaker Mike Johnson on Monday said he planned this week to advance a long-stalled national security spending package to aid Israel, Ukraine and other American allies, along with a separate bill aimed at mollifying conservatives who have been vehemently opposed to backing Kyiv.

Mr. Johnson’s announcement, coming after he has agonized for weeks over whether and how to advance an infusion of critical aid to Ukraine amid stiff Republican resistance, was the first concrete indication that he had settled on a path forward. It came days after Iran launched a large aerial attack on Israel, amplifying calls for Congress to move quickly to approve the pending aid bill.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

US to Israel: If you strike back at Iran, you’ll do it alone

Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War
Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War

As Israel on Monday weighed its response to Iran’s stunning attacks this weekend, the U.S. is privately telling officials there: If Israel strikes back militarily, it will do so alone.

It’s an unusual message for a close ally that’s spent decades receiving more US military aid than any other country in the world and whose relationship with America is often described as “ironclad.”

But after months of Israel acting on its own in Gaza — and facing tough criticism from the U.S. and other allies that its military operations have gone too far – the Biden administration made clear the U.S. wouldn’t participate in offensive military operations against Iran, fearing a broader war in the Middle East.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Trump’s N.Y. hush money trial begins. Here’s what you missed the first day.

Trump Angry
Trump Angry

Donald Trump — now a former president on trial — has sought to turn his legal peril into a boost for his presidential campaign, animating his supporters and attempting to sow doubt about the motives of his opponents. 

But facing 34 counts of felony charges, Trump argued on the historic first day of his New York hush money trial that he is the victim of a criminal justice system weaponized against him.

He called it “an assault” on the nation. And as the presumptive Republican nominee for president, he repeatedly attacked the prosecution for waging “election interference.”

It is “why I’m very proud to be here,” Trump said.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

The Rude Pundit: GOP Ignores Trump’s Crimes and Makes Up Sh** About a Crime Wave

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

There’s a charming-ass Facebook group that Zuckerberg’s algorithm regularly feeds to my, well, feed. It’s a little ray of sunshine since the posts are all by people from other countries talking about their trips to New York City. And while some things will make any local cringe, like they really seem to love pedicab rides or they call the World Trade Center Memorial just “9/11” (as in “we went to 911”), the authors, from New Zealand or Indonesia or Argentina or Austria, mostly unabashedly really fucking love NYC. They share tips on places to go or stay or eat. They post their itineraries and ask for comment on if it’s doable. Like I said, just charming as hell.

One topic a bunch of them write about is something that comes as a surprise to them: they say how safe they felt all the time. They felt safe in Times Square or Greenwich Village or Central Park. They felt safe walking at night and in the subways. They heard that crime was out of control or there was a plague of unhoused people or just that New York City was a hellscape, an unending gauntlet of murder, robbery, rape, and assault. Then they get here and…it’s just not any of that. They let the group, which includes tons of people planning trips, know that they always felt perfectly fine. 

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Charlie Pierce: Ron DeSantis Crawls Out of Obscurity for a Minute to Limit Civilian Police Oversight

Remember Ron DeSantis? The guy who “won” the Covid epidemic? The guy who was going to save the Republican Party from El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago? Man fond of lifts in his shoes and white go-go boots? Exposed as a complete mutt as soon as the presidential campaign opened? He has returned to Florida as its governor and chief importer of terrible ideas.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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Trump’s first criminal trial is a historic and solemn moment for America

Trump Black and White

The United States will cross a historic threshold on Monday when for the first time a former president goes on criminal trial in a case laced with fateful significance because Donald Trump could be back in the Oval Office next year.

When the presumptive GOP nominee walks into court for the start of jury selection, he and the country will enter a new state of reality as legal and political worlds collide in a trial almost guaranteed to deepen Americans’ bitter ideological estrangement.

The trial, related to hush money payments to an adult film actress before the 2016 election, will mark yet another extraordinary twist in the story of Trump, whose incessant testing of the limits of presidential decorum and the law has caused nearly nine years of political tumult and may still have years left to run. It raises the possibility that, depending on the jury’s verdict, the Republican nominee in the 2024 presidential election could be a convicted felon. And given the case’s subject matter — details about a payment to a woman who alleged that she had a sexual relationship with Trump, which he denies — it could reflect poorly on Trump’s character and ethics as voters weigh their decisions in November.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Here’s what time taxes are due on April 15

tax

The deadline for most people to file a 2023 tax return with the IRS is fast approaching; returns are due by 11:59 p.m., in your time zone, on Monday, April 15, with some exceptions. 

Taxpayers in Massachusetts and Maine have until April 17 to file and pay taxes because of the Patriots’ Day and Emancipation Day holidays. There are also extensions in some areas impacted by extreme weather. Individuals and businesses impacted by the Oct. 7 attack on Israel have also been given an extension, the IRS announced. There are extensions for certain active-duty military members and citizens living abroad.

The IRS had received about 100 million returns as of the week ending April 5, but the agency expects more than 128.7 million individual tax returns to be filed by the deadline.

Read the rest of the story at CBS News

Trump’s Criminal Trial to Begin in Manhattan With Jury Selection

The first criminal trial of an American president will begin Monday as prosecutors and defense lawyers convene in a Manhattan courtroom to begin selecting the jury that will decide Donald J. Trump’s fate.

The Manhattan district attorney, Alvin L. Bragg, has charged Mr. Trump with 34 felonies, accusing him of falsifying documents to conceal a sex scandal involving a porn star.

The case, one of four indictments facing the former president and presumptive Republican nominee, could reshape the political landscape ahead of Election Day.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

World Leaders Urge Restraint as Israel Weighs Retaliation Against Iran

Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War
Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War

Israel on Monday was facing international pressure not to retaliate against Iran for its missile and drone attack over the weekend, even as some far-right members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government called for a swift, aggressive response.

Mr. Netanyahu faces a delicate calculation: Letting an unprecedented direct attack from Iran, even one that produced little damage, pass without a military response could open him up to criticism that he is endangering Israel. But overly aggressive retaliation could significantly raise the chances of a broader war in the Middle East as Israeli forces continue to battle Hamas in Gaza.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

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RFK Jr. consultant terminated after saying that voting for him helps ‘get rid of Biden’

Robert Kennedy
Robert Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s independent presidential campaign says it has ended its contract with a consultant who was seen on video encouraging people to vote for him in order to get “rid of Biden” even if that means electing former President Donald Trump.

Campaign manager Amaryllis Fox announced the decision in a post on X in response to a Kennedy supporter asking for the campaign to distance itself from the consultant, Rita Palma.

Video of Palma’s comments had energized Democrats online as they said it confirmed their accusations that the purpose of Kennedy’s campaign is to hand the White House back to Trump over President Joe Biden. Kennedy rejects that.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

House Speaker Mike Johnson Is Negotiating With White House To Advance Ukraine Aid

Speaker Mike Johnson
Speaker Mike Johnson

House Speaker Mike Johnson is negotiating with the White House as he prepares for the treacherous task of advancing wartime funding for Ukraine and Israel through the House, a top House Republican said Thursday.

House Republican Leader Steve Scalise told reporters that Johnson had been talking with White House officials about a package that would deviate from the Senate’s $95 billion foreign security package and include several Republican demands. It comes after Johnson has delayed for months on advancing aid that would provide desperately needed ammunition and weaponry for Kyiv, trying to find the right time to advance a package that will be a painful political lift.

“There’s been no agreement reached,” Scalise said. “Obviously there would have to an agreement reached not just with the White House, but with our own members.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump Tests Limits Of Gag Order With Post Insulting 2 Likely Witnesses In Criminal Trial

Trump Mug Shot
Trump Mug Shot

Days after a New York judge expanded a gag order on Donald Trump to curtail “inflammatory” speech, the former president tested its limits by disparaging two key witnesses in his upcoming criminal hush money trial as liars.

In a post on his Truth Social platform Wednesday, Trump called his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, and the adult film actor Stormy Daniels “two sleaze bags who have, with their lies and misrepresentations, cost our Country dearly!”

In an order first made in March, and then revised on April 1, Judge Juan Merchan barred Trump from making public statements about probable trial witnesses “concerning their potential participation in the investigation or in this criminal proceeding.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Key trial figures react to O.J. Simpson’s death

OJ Simpson In Jail
OJ Simpson In Jail

The death of O.J. Simpson drew immediate reaction around the country Thursday, renewing public interest in his era-defining 1995 murder trial — and reviving painful memories for the families who were close to the events.

Simpson was acquitted of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman, capping off what legal analysts described at the time as the “trial of the century.”

Goldman’s father, Fred Goldman, told NBC News that the news of Simpson’s death only further underscored his grief for his son, who was found stabbed to death outside Brown Simpson’s home in Los Angeles on June 12, 1994.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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House Republicans revolt against spy agency bill, signaling trouble for Speaker Johnson

Speaker Mike Johnson
Speaker Mike Johnson

A small faction of House Republicans is once again blocking key legislation and posing a critical test of Speaker Mike Johnson’s ability to hold on to his gavel.

And their actions threw the House once more into chaos, as Republicans sniped among themselves and some far-right members threatened to let funding for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act — a post-9/11 measure that strengthened the surveillance powers of U.S. intelligence services — expire on April 19.

Nineteen far-right members on Wednesday opposed a procedural hurdle known as a rule, preventing FISA and three other proposals from being debated and ultimately voted on this week.

Read the rest of the story at The Washington Post

Trump, criticizing Arizona abortion ruling, says he wouldn’t sign a federal ban if elected.

Donald Trump Scared
Donald Trump Scared

Days after saying that abortion policies should be left to the states, former President Donald J. Trump on Wednesday criticized an Arizona court ruling for upholding an 1864 law that banned nearly all abortions and said he would not sign a national abortion ban if he were elected president.

Speaking to reporters on an airport tarmac in Atlanta, Mr. Trump said he expected that the Arizona law would be “straightened out.” Hours later, Republicans in the State Legislature, which they control, blocked an effort by Democrats to repeal the ban.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Arizona Democrats Tried To Repeal 1864 Abortion Ban, But Were Shot Down By GOP

Arizona State Flag
Arizona State Flag

Arizona Democrats tried to repeal a controversial, 1864 law set to take effect that will effectively block almost all abortions in the state, but were stymied by Republicans in both chambers of the legislature on Wednesday.

Lawmakers tried to repeal the law, which dates to the Civil War era and predates Arizona’s statehood, in both the state’s House and Senate on Wednesday. During a fiery moment, state House Rep. Matt Gress (R) tried to initiate a vote on the matter before he was shot down by others in the GOP who then called for a recess and adjourned until next week.

The effort prompted outrage from Democrats, who repeatedly yelled “Shame!” at their Republican colleagues as they walked out of the the legislature.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

New York appeals judge rejects Trump’s third legal challenge to delay hush money criminal trial

Trump Sad Leaving Plane
Trump Sad Leaving Plane

A New York appeals court judge on Wednesday denied a third effort in three days by Donald Trump’s attorneys to put on hold the former president’s impending criminal trial.

Associate Justice Ellen Gesmer for the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York denied Trump’s third legal challenge to delay the trial after a pair of state appeals court judges rejected similar efforts by Trump on Monday and Tuesday to pause the hush money trial, which is set to begin April 15 with jury selection.

The court docket for the state Appellate Division showed Trump’s attorneys filed the challenge as a lawsuit invoking a provision of New York law known as Article 78. Article 78 challenges allow litigants, whether in ongoing litigation or otherwise, to seek relief from allegedly unlawful state or local government action. The documents were filed under seal.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Arizona Attorney General Says She Wouldn’t Enforce ‘Unconscionable’ Abortion Ban

Arizona State Flag
Arizona State Flag

Shortly after the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a 150-year-old law criminalizing abortion in the state could be reinstated, the state attorney general pledged not to enforce it.

Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes minced no words in a statement that denounced the “unconscionable” ruling as “an affront to freedom.”

“By effectively striking down a law passed this century and replacing it with one from 160 years ago, the Court has risked the health and lives of Arizonans,” Mayes said.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Judge in Trump’s classified docs case grants prosecutor’s request to keep names of government witnesses secret

gavel courtroom trial
gavel courtroom trial

The judge overseeing former President Donald Trump‘s classified documents case handed federal prosecutors a partial victory Tuesday in a monthslong dispute by granting their request to keep the names of government witnesses sealed.

U.S. District Judge Aileen issued the 24-page order in response to special counsel Jack Smith’s request to reconsider a previous order that the government said could lead more than two dozen potential government witnesses in the Florida case to be publicly identified.

Under Cannon’s new order, potential witnesses’ names will be redacted, though significant parts of witness statements to investigators may be made public.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden says Netanyahu is making a ‘mistake’ with his handling of the Israel-Hamas war

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

President Joe Biden upped his criticism of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s role in the Israel-Hamas war but did not indicate any significant changes in U.S. policy toward its Middle East ally.

“I think what he’s doing is a mistake,” Biden said in an interview with Univision that aired Tuesday night in response to a question about whether Netanyahu is more concerned about political survival than Israelis’ national interest.

“I don’t agree with his approach,” Biden added in the interview, which was taped last Wednesday.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

 

Arizona Supreme Court rules a near-total abortion ban from 1864 is enforceable

Phoenix Arizona Cactus
Phoenix Arizona Cactus Saguaro

The Arizona Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a 160-year-old near-total abortion ban still on the books in the state is enforceable, a bombshell decision that adds the state to the growing lists of places where abortion care is effectively banned.

The ruling allows an 1864 law in Arizona to stand that made abortion a felony punishable by two to five years in prison for anyone who performs one or helps a woman obtain one. 

The law — which was codified in 1901, and again in 1913 — outlaws abortion from the moment of conception but includes an exception to save the woman’s life.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Charlie Pierce: Trump Finally Gave His Big Boy Speech About Abortion

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

Stop me if you’ve heard this one. On Monday, forced by events to confront yet another issue he doesn’t comprehend and chooses not to learn anything about, El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago gave his Big Boy Speech about reproductive freedom. It was truthless and incoherent. It was, after all, a day ending in y. From CNN:

“My view is now that we have abortion where everyone wanted it from a legal standpoint, the states will determine by vote or legislation, or perhaps both. And whatever they decide must be the law of the land. In this case, the law of the state,” Trump said in a video posted to his Truth Social account. “Many states will be different,” Trump continued. “Many will have a different number of weeks, or some will have more conservative than others, and that’s what they will be. At the end of the day, this is all about the will of the people.”

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

Appeals court judge denies Trump’s bid to delay next week’s hush money trial

Trump Mug Shot
Trump Mug Shot

A state appeals court judge Monday denied Donald Trump‘s bid for an emergency delay of his impending criminal trial in New York.

Justice Lizbeth González of the state Appellate Division issued the ruling after attorneys for the former president argued the trial needed to be halted because “an impartial jury cannot be selected right now based on prejudicial pretrial publicity.” González rejected the request in a one-line ruling late Monday afternoon with no explanation.

Trump’s attorneys had filed the eleventh-hour motion in an attempt to delay a trial that centers on charges that Trump falsified business records related to hush money payments. The long-shot legal maneuver came exactly one week before the first criminal trial of a former president is scheduled to start.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Highlights From the Total Solar Eclipse’s Dark Path Through the U.S., Mexico and Canada

Solar Eclipse
Solar Eclipse

The full force of the moon’s shadow crossed the United States, Mexico and Canada on Monday, as the first total solar eclipse in seven years plunged the day into darkness and reminded all in its path of our planet’s place in the cosmos.

For more than four hours, the silhouette of the moon ate into the yellow orb of the sun, obscuring all but the silvery glow of the corona. The celestial marvel carved a southwest-to-northeast pathacross North America, delighting sky gazers from the beaches of Mexico to the plains of Texas, past the raging waters of Niagara Falls and through the rugged coastline of Newfoundland. There in the city of Gander, gaps in the thick clouds revealed moments of the eclipse’s effects on the horizon before obscuring the sun in the moment of totality.

Read the rest of the story at CBS News

Mike Pence calls Trump’s abortion position ‘a slap in the face’

Vice President Micheal Pence poses for his official portrait at The White House, in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, October 24, 2017. (Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen)

Donald Trump’s former vice president, Mike Pence, is calling Trump’s latest statement on his abortion policies “a slap in the face to the millions of pro-life Americans who voted for him in 2016 and 2020.”

“Today, too many Republican politicians are all too ready to wash their hands of the battle for life. Republicans win on life when we speak the truth boldly and stand on the principle that we all know to be true – human life begins at conception and should be defended from womb to tomb,” Pence wrote in a post on Monday on X, formerly Twitter.

Pence has long been to the right of the former president on the issue of reproductive rights.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Special counsel Jack Smith urges Supreme Court to reject Trump’s presidential immunity claim

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

Special counsel Jack Smith urged the Supreme Court on Monday to reject former President Donald Trump‘s position that he should be granted absolute immunity in the federal election interference case, with prosecutors arguing that criminal law applies to a president.

The 66-page filing from Smith and his team laid out a series of arguments taking aim at Trump’s claim that a president is immune from criminal prosecution. Prosecutors argued that there are no presidential powers that would entitle Trump to immunity in this case and that “history likewise refutes” Trump’s arguments.

“The Framers never endorsed criminal immunity for a former President, and all Presidents from the Founding to the modern era have known that after leaving office they faced potential criminal liability for official acts,” Smith said in the brief, referring to President Richard Nixon’s Watergate scandal.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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The Rude Pundit: We Can’t Rely on People to Just Vote Against Trump; They Have to Vote For Biden

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

All this Trump shit can get exhausting, can’t it? Watching this hemorrhoid in human form day in and day out as he blusters about perceived attacks by migrants and judges, ranting his brain-fucked comparisons between himself and Nelson Mandela or Jesus or Al Capone? And then we check the news on one of his four trials, whether it’s the one where he paid off the porn star he fucked to keep her quiet, or the one where he tried to get the Georgia Secretary of State to change the vote, or the one where he stole classified documents and refused to give them back, or the one where he tried to get people to violently overthrow the government for him, and we see them moving at a speed that would make glaciers say, “Jesus, pick it up already.” But we get signs and omens, reading every filing, every decision, with voices echoing on social media that this time he’s fucked up and it’ll all come crashing down or this time Judge Cannon has gone too far and will be booted from the case or this time he’s violated a gag order and will have to be jailed, all the tweets and threads and memes and toks that tik ready to soothe and satisfy that raging hard-on for Trump to finally be undone, for this to be over, when, really, truly, we know in our heart of hearts, that it will never be over, that we are damned to the mental Sisyphean task of rolling that boulder of hope up the hill of justice, only to see it tumble back down once again, and we know, as much as we try to resist, that we’re gonna roll that fucker up one more time. 

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Biden may have trouble getting on Ohio’s general election ballot, state’s top election official warns

Ohio Flag
Ohio Flag

Ohio’s secretary of state on Friday signaled that the Democratic National Convention may take place too late for President Joe Bidento appear on the general election ballot in the state, according to a letter obtained by NBC News.

“The Democratic National Convention is scheduled to convene on August 19, 2024, which occurs more than a week after the August 7 deadline to certify a presidential candidate to the office,” Secretary of State Frank LaRose wrote to Ohio Democratic Party Chairwoman Liz Walters.

ABC News first reported about the existence and content of this letter.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Trump tells billionaires he’ll keep their taxes low at $50 million fundraising gala

Former President Donald Trump emphasized the importance of extending his signature tax cuts to some of the nation’s wealthiest political donors, according to a readout of his private remarks Saturday night provided by a Trump campaign official.

“Trump spoke on the need to win back the White House so we can turn our country around, focusing on key issues including unleashing energy production, securing our southern border, reducing inflation, extending the Trump Tax Cuts, eliminating Joe Biden’s insane [electric vehicle] mandate, protecting Israel, and avoiding global war,” the campaign official said of a roughly 45-minute speech to donors in Palm Beach, Florida.

The campaign declined NBC News’ requests to have a reporter present for his remarks and to make a full transcript of them available.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Israeli military pulls troops from southern Gaza

Kiev Ukraine Russia Attack War
Kiev Ukraine Russia Attack War

The Israeli military says it has reduced the number of ground troops in the southern Gaza Strip following the conclusion of its monthslong operation in the city of Khan Younis, raising questions about the future of its offensive in the enclave amid pressure from the U.S. to reduce the war’s humanitarian toll.

In a statement on Sunday, the IDF said it was pulling its 98th commando division “to recuperate and prepare for future operations,” as Israeli army vehicles were seen heading to a base in southern Israel.

“The achievements made by the IDF’s Division 98 and its units, are extremely impressive,” Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant said. “They have eliminated terrorists and destroyed terror targets including warehouses, weapons, headquarters, communication centers and more. Their activities enabled the dismantling of Hamas as a functioning military unit in this area.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

When and where the solar eclipse will be crossing the U.S.

Solar Eclipse
Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse will grace the skies over North America on Monday, one of the most hotly anticipated sky-watching events in recent years.

Weather permitting, millions of people in Mexico, 15 U.S. states and eastern Canada will have the chance to see the moon slip between Earth and sun, temporarily blocking the sun’s light.

The total solar eclipse will be visible along a “path of totality” that measures more than 100 miles wide and extends across the continent. Along that path, the moon will fully obscure the sun, causing afternoon skies to darken for a few minutes.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Dean Obeidallah: Trump’s Wealthy Donors Will Gladly End Our Democracy To Make More Money

In February 1933, Herman Goering—one of Adolph Hitler’s top leaders– sent telegrams to Germany’s 25 leading industrialists inviting them to a secret meeting in Berlin.  The reason for the clandestine gathering was that Hitler–who had been named Chancellor of Germany the month before–had just called for new elections to take place the following month. Hitler, though, had one problem: His Nazi party desperately needed funds to wage a campaign. 

At the meeting, Hitler spoke for nearly 90 minutes telling the German industrialists –such as  arms and steel tycoon Gustav Krupp—of his plans to end the nation’s democracy after the upcoming election because they could better prosper in a dictatorship under his rule, explaining, “Private enterprise cannot be maintained in the age of democracy.”   And later Goering told these wealthy businessmen a Nazi victory in the upcoming election would guarantee a favorable climate for business.  In response, as Robert Jackson, the chief U.S. prosecutor at Nuremberg and former Supreme Court Justice noted, “[T]he industrialists…became so enthusiastic that they set about to raise three million Reichsmarks [worth about $30 million today] to strengthen and confirm the Nazi Party in power.”

Read the rest of Dean Obeidallah’s piece and and subscribe to his Substack

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Trump calls for Jack Smith’s punishment for criticizing judge in classified documents case

Jack Smith Enters Courtroom
Jack Smith Enters Courtroom

Former President Donald Trump on Thursday said special counsel Jack Smith should be punished for issuing a scathing critique of a recent request for jury instruction proposals by the judge overseeing Trump’s classified documents case.

Smith “should be sanctioned or censured for the way he is attacking a highly respected Judge, Aileen Cannon, who is presiding over his FAKE Documents Hoax case in Florida,” Trump wrote in a post to his Truth Social platform. “He is a lowlife who is nasty, rude, and condescending, and obviously trying to ‘play the ref.’”

In a court filing Tuesday, Smith slammed Cannon’s order for dueling jury instructions from his office and Trump’s lawyers, arguing the request is based on a “fundamentally flawed legal premise” that would “distort” the trial, potentially leading to a directed verdict for Trump. Smith signaled that federal prosecutors would appeal if the judge rules against their request to “promptly” decide whether the legal premise of her order constitutes a “correct formulation of the law.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Georgia judge rejects Trump bid to dismiss election interference charges on free speech grounds

Trump Sad Leaving Plane
Trump Sad Leaving Plane

A Georgia judge on Thursday denied a bid by former President Donald Trump and his co-defendants in the state election interference case to dismiss the charges on First Amendment grounds.

In a 14-page ruling, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee said their right to protest the results of the 2020 presidential election did not protect them from the charges that District Attorney Fani Willis’s office brought.

The “Court finds these vital constitutional protections do not reach the actions and statements alleged by the State,” McAfee wrote, and their motions to dismiss are “therefore denied.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Judge denies Trump bid to dismiss classified documents case using Presidential Records Act

Trump Classified Documents
Trump Classified Documents

A judge Thursday denied former President Donald Trump’s bid to dismiss a case alleging he mishandled classified documents, rejecting his argument that the papers were considered personal under the Presidential Records Act.

The charges against Trump “make no reference to the Presidential Records Act, nor do they rely on that statute for purposes of stating an offense,” U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon wrote.

“For these reasons, accepting the allegations of the Superseding Indictment as true, the Presidential Records Act does not provide a pre-trial basis to dismiss,” the judge wrote, raising the possibility the defense argument could be used later.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Israel to open more aid routes to Gaza and increase deliveries after pressure from Biden

Biden and Netanyahu
Biden and Netanyahu

Israel committed to opening additional aid routes to allow for increased assistance to flow into Gaza after a call with President Joe Biden warning of a potential shift in U.S. policy after a strike this week killed seven World Central Kitchen aid workers.

White House National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said after Thursday’s call that Israel had committed to opening the Ashdod port to allow assistance to be directly delivered into Gaza, opening the Erez crossing to let aid flow into north Gaza and significantly boosting deliveries from Jordan.

“As the President said today on the call, U.S. policy with respect to Gaza will be determined by our assessment of Israel’s immediate action on these and other steps, including steps to protect innocent civilians and the safety of aid workers,” Watson said in a statementThursday night.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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José Andrés Says Israel Deliberately Killed 7 Of His Aid Workers In Gaza Airstrikes

World Central Kitchen Jose Andres
World Central Kitchen Jose Andres

Chef and humanitarian José Andrés has accused Israel of deliberately launching the airstrikes that killed seven aid workers with his World Central Kitchen charity in Gaza, calling the incident a “direct attack” on humanitarian workers trying to provide food and supplies to desperate Palestinians.

In a New York Times opinion article published early Wednesday, the world-renowned chef paid tribute to the workers who were killed in Monday’s attack, saying they were the “best of humanity.” One of the victims was Palestinian. The others came from Australia, Poland, Britain, Canada and the United States.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Jack Smith rips judge’s jury instructions request in Trump classified documents case

Jack Smith Enters Courtroom
Jack Smith Enters Courtroom

Special counsel Jack Smith strongly criticized a recent order by the judge presiding over the case of former President Donald Trump’s alleged mishandling of classified documents, saying that her request for jury instructions from his office and Trump’s lawyers is based on a “fundamentally flawed legal premise.”

In a court filing Tuesday, Smith argued that the legal premise behind Judge Aileen Cannon’s request is “wrong” and that it would “distort” the trial, potentially leading to a directed verdict in Trump’s favor. The special counsel urged Cannon to “promptly” decide whether the legal premise in question represents a “correct formulation of the law,” and indicated that federal prosecutors would appeal if the judge rules against them.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Judge in Trump hush money case rejects attempt to delay trial with immunity defense

The judge presiding over Donald Trump‘s falsifying business records case shot down his bid to use presidential immunity as part of his defense, finding the former president waited too long to raise the issue.

In his ruling Wednesday, Judge Juan Merchan also denied Trump’s motion to delay the trial’s start date until the U.S. Supreme Courtrules on his immunity claims in the federal election interference case in Washington, D.C.

Trump had contended in a New York filing last month that he’s immune from state prosecution based on “official acts,” and that some of the evidence against him should be kept out of the impending trial because they were official presidential acts — including his tweets and public comments.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden and Netanyahu to hold first call since Israeli strike killed World Central Kitchen workers

Biden and Netanyahu
Biden and Netanyahu

President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are expected to speak by phone on Thursday, according to a U.S. official with knowledge of the call.

It will be their first direct communication since seven aid workerswere killed by an Israeli strike in Gaza this week.

The discussion comes after Biden on Tuesday delivered some of his strongest criticism of Israel since the start of its war with Hamas, saying that he was “outraged and heartbroken” by the deaths of the World Central Kitchen humanitarian workers, who were killed by an Israeli airstrike on Monday.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Biden campaign argues abortion rights ballot measure makes it easier to flip Florida from Trump

Pro Choice Abortion Protester Keep Abortion Legal
Pro Choice Abortion Protester Keep Abortion Legal

President Joe Biden’s reelection campaign is celebrating a court ruling that will add an abortion rights measure to the November ballot in Florida, giving voters the chance to undo the state’s current restrictions on the procedure.

That will “help mobilize and expand the electorate in the state” based on how widely supported similar such efforts have been elsewhere, Biden aides argue.

“Protecting abortion rights is mobilizing a diverse and growing segment of voters to help buoy Democrats up and down the ballot,” Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez wrote in a memo on Monday, in part.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Trump’s social media company sues co-founders, seeks to forfeit their shares

Trump Media & Technology Group is attempting to force two of the company’s co-founders to forfeit their shares and give up any claim to the company’s leadership.

Trump’s social media company filed the lawsuit against Wesley Moss and Andrew Litinsky — co-founders and former Apprentice contestants — in a Florida court on March 24, two days after shareholders overwhelmingly voted to approve the company’s merger.

The lawsuit alleges that Moss and Litinsky “failed spectacularly” in their leadership of Trump Media, made “reckless and wasteful decisions,” and caused “significant damage” to the company.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Trump Again Calls For Hush Money Judge To Recuse Himself After Gag Order Expanded

Former President Donald Trump once again called for the judge overseeing his hush money case in New York to recuse himself, his latest attempt to see the case delayed indefinitely rather than go to trial.

Trump’s attorneys filed a letter on Monday arguing that Judge Juan Merchan was subject to a conflict of interest over his daughter’s work for a political consultant that has Democratic clients. The former president attacked Merchan and his daughter, Loren Merchan, in recent days on social media to the point the judge expanded a limited gag order against Trump over the course of the case.

“Your Honor’s daughter is an executive and partner at Authentic Campaigns, Inc.,” Trump’s attorneys wrote to the judge. “Authentic and Your Honor’s daughter are making money by supporting the creation and dissemination of campaign advocacy for President Trump’s opponent, political rivals, and the Democratic Party.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Biden Says He’s ‘Outraged’ By World Central Kitchen Deaths In Gaza

President Joe Biden Flags Speech
President Joe Biden Flags Speech

President Joe Biden said Tuesday that he’s “outraged and heartbroken” over the deaths of World Central Kitchen aid workers in Gaza who were killed by an Israeli airstrike this week.

“They were providing food to hungry civilians in the middle of a war,” Biden said, of the seven slain humanitarian workers. “They were brave and selfless.”

Biden called out Israel for failing to “protect aid workers trying to deliver desperately needed help to civilians” and demanded that the results of Israel’s investigation into the deaths be made public.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

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Trump’s former spokesperson Hope Hicks expected to testify in his hush money trial

Donald Trump’s former spokesperson Hope Hicks is expected to testify for the prosecution at the former president’s criminal hush money trial in New York that is scheduled to begin later this month, multiple sources familiar with matter told ABC News.

Hicks met in March 2023 with the Manhattan district attorney’s office before Trump was indicted for falsifying business records related to a $130,000 hush payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels. Trump has denied all charges and has pleaded not guilty.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Florida Supreme Court allows 6-week abortion ban to take effect, but voters will have the final say

In a pair of significant decisions Monday, the Florida Supreme Court upheld a 15-week ban on abortion in the state while also allowing a proposed amendment that would enshrine abortion protections in the state constitution to appear on the November ballot.

The conservative-leaning court’s decision on the 15-week ban also means that a six-week abortion ban, with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the woman, that Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law last year will take effect.

But the bench’s ruling to allow the constitutional amendment to appear on the ballot this fall means voters will have a chance in just seven months to undo those restrictions.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Trump posts $175 million bond in New York civil fraud case

Trump Sad Leaving Plane
Trump Sad Leaving Plane

Former President Donald Trump has posted a $175 million bond in the New York civil fraud case, preventing seizure of his assets while the case is under appeal.

A state appeals court ruled last week that Trump and his co-defendants had 10 days to post the amount, which was reduced from the $464 million judgment that was originally due March 25.

Before last week’s ruling, Trump was liable for $454 million, most of the fraud judgment, but the amount he owed had been growing by more than $111,000 daily because of added interest.

Trump attorney Alina Habba said Monday that he would be vindicated on appeal.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Judge expands partial gag order after Trump’s attacks on his daughter in hush money case

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

The judge presiding over Donald Trump‘s impending New York criminal trial expanded a partial gag order Monday night following the former president’s online attacks against his daughter.

State Judge Juan Merchan said Trump is barred from attacking his family members and those of Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, in addition to the witnesses, prosecutors, court staff members and their relatives whom he was directed to “refrain” from talking about in a previous gag order issued last week.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Charlie Pierce: Hats Off to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Which Has Found The Key to Covering Trump

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

The Cleveland Plain Dealer once was one of those famous local newspapers at which people like me dreamed of working one day. Its history went back past the Civil War to the days of Jacksonian Democrats. It had a romantic name, resonant with echoes of The Front Page. It won a Pulitzer for editorial cartooning in 1953. It won another for the columns written by my friend, Connie Schultz. Alas, in recent years, the paper fell into the dark mills of absentee owners. In 2020, its owners shuttered the print newsroom, leaving only Cleveland.com.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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The Rude Pundit: It’s Not Just the Pandemic… We’re Traumatized Because of Trump and the MAGA Movement.

The Rude Pundit
The Rude Pundit

Look, I’m not disagreeing with the pair of doctors who wrote in The Atlantic that everyone is grappling  with at least residual emotional detritus from the Covid pandemic that fucked us up 4 years ago and that’s why shit just seems so weird. I mean, how can you disagree with “In our lifetime, COVID posed an unprecedented threat in both its overwhelming scope and severity; it left most Americans unable to protect themselves and, at times, at a loss to comprehend what was happening. That meets the clinical definition of trauma: an overwhelming experience in which you are threatened with serious physical or psychological harm.” Yeah, no shit. 

In my real job, I say all the time that we haven’t dealt with the effects of that asshole virus, and not just with all the students who had formative experiences cockblocked by lockdown. Senior years of high school, first years of college, graduations, to have all that over Zoom is gonna mess you up. And I know too many people who had to handle the worst of Covid firsthand, who said goodbye to loved ones through windows, who had empty funerals. Fuck, my stepfather (who really was my dad in all but sperm) caught it and didn’t treat it fast enough and it cashed in his check. Yeah, I’m traumatized, too.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Marjorie Taylor Greene gathers allies to support ousting Speaker Johnson

Speaker Mike Johnson
Speaker Mike Johnson

Days after his speakership was put on notice by a far-right member, Mike Johnson strategized with a key – and perhaps surprising – source: firebrand GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, the architect of the last effort to remove a speaker.

Gaetz, who is making clear he is firmly in Johnson’s corner, counseled the rookie speaker during a recent phone call to put some conservative wins on the board over the next few weeks as he navigates the threat of a potential motion to vacate the speaker’s chair, according to sources familiar with the conversation.

“I gave the speaker some unsolicited advice. That we’ve got to get into a fighting posture. And I was very pleased with how the speaker received that advice,” Gaetz confirmed in an interview with CNN. “”The speaker wants to put wins on the board for House Republicans, and we better start doing that. … I’m glad the speaker hasn’t rolled over to the $95 billion Ukraine supplemental that the Senate passed, and I think that he’s forging a better path on that issue as we speak.”

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Trump must ‘immediately desist’ from targeting judge’s daughter, prosecutors say

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

Two days after former President Donald Trump targeted the daughter of the judge overseeing his New York hush money case on social media, lawyers for the Manhattan district attorney have asked Judge Juan Merchan to clarify the case’s limited gag order and “direct that defendant immediately desist from attacks on family members,” according to a letter sent to the judge.

“[T]his Court should make abundantly clear that the March 26 Order protects family members of the Court, the District Attorney, and all other individuals mentioned in the Order,” said the letter, which was sent to the judge Thursday.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Trump is ‘inciting political violence’ sharing Biden hog-tied video: Biden campaign

The White House Washington DC
The White House Washington DC

President Joe Biden’s campaign on Saturday excoriated former President Donald Trump for sharing a video on social media depicting what appears to be an image of Biden tied up and kidnapped in the back of a pickup truck.

“This image from Donald Trump is the type of crap you post when you’re calling for a bloodbath or when you tell the Proud Boys to ‘stand back and stand by,'” Biden campaign communications director Michael Tyler said in a statement to ABC News.

Earlier this month, while discussing the American auto industry, Trump said there would be a “bloodbath” if he did not win the presidential election in November, a comment that garnered swift backlash from Biden himself.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Israelis Stage Largest Protest Since War Began To Increase Pressure On Netanyahu

Tens of thousands of Israelis thronged central Jerusalem on Sunday in the largest anti-government protest since the country went to war in October. Protesters urged the government to reach a cease-fire deal to free dozens of hostages held in Gaza by Hamas militants and to hold early elections.

Israeli society was broadly united immediately after Oct. 7, when Hamas killed some 1,200 people during a cross-border attack and took 250 others hostage. Nearly six months of conflict have renewed divisions over the leadership of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, though the country remains largely in favor of the war.

Netanyahu has vowed to destroy Hamas and bring all the hostages home, yet those goals have been elusive. While Hamas has suffered heavy losses, it remains intact.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

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SM Happy Hour VideoCast with Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell & Victor Shi

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Last Day is a TRIPLE MATCH DAY for FreeSpeech TV!!

This is it! The last day of the Spring Pledge Drive, and your last chance to make a year-end gift to Free Speech TV to support our 2024 Get Out the Vote campaign and election coverage. We’ve been talking about this for two weeks, and you’re probably wondering how much we’ve raised! You can find out at freespeech.org/donate. That’s also where you can make your year-end gift to FSTV. Don’t wait! You’re out of time! Today the Spring Frontline Funders are matching your donations not just once, not twice, but three times over! That means your gift of $100 right now will mean FSTV gets $400! All you have to do is go to freespeech.org/donate or call 877-378-8669. We can’t do it without you. Thank YOU, thank you, thank you. Here’s to our democracy! One that works for us all.

Massive effort to clear Baltimore bridge collapse is an ‘incredibly complex job,’ governor says. Here’s how they’ll do it

Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse
Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse

Crews working to clear the steel frame of the collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge and the 984-foot cargo ship that felled it face “an incredibly complex job” – one that is essential to reopening the Port of Baltimore and recovering the remains that may lie under the wreckage, Maryland Gov. Wes Moore said Thursday.

“When you have a chance to see that wreckage up close, you fully understand the enormity of the challenge,” Moore said in a news conference, noting, “Our timeline will be long.”

The largest crane in the Eastern Seaboard was expected to arrive Thursday evening to help clear the wreckage, Maryland Sen. Chris Van Hollen said, and three heavy lift vessels should begin arriving Friday, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg told CNN.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Trump Once Again Goes After Daughter Of Judge Overseeing Hush Money Trial

Former President Donald Trump took to social media for the second time in two days to attack the daughter of the judge overseeing his upcoming criminal trial in New York.

In a Truth Social post on Thursday, Trump wrote that Acting New York Supreme Court Justice Juan Merchan’s daughter is a “rabid Trump hater.” He also called for the judge to recuse himself from the April 15 criminal trial on a case related to the hush money payments Trump made ahead of the 2016 election.

“Judge Juan Merchan is totally compromised, and should be removed from this TRUMP Non-Case immediately. His Daughter, Loren, is a Rabid Trump Hater, who has admitted to having conversations with her father about me, and yet he gagged me,” Trump wrote on Truth Social.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

3 presidents, celebrity performances and protester interruptions at Biden campaign’s $26M fundraiser

Obama and Biden
Obama and Biden

President Joe Biden was joined Thursday by two of his Democratic predecessors for a star-studded fundraiser at Radio City Music Hall that his campaign said brought in more than $26 million.

Former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton participated in the event in New York with more than 5,000 supporters in attendance — including several protesters who interrupted the program when the three presidents were speaking.

Actor and comedian Mindy Kaling hosted the program, which ended at around 10 p.m., and late night host Stephen Colbert moderated a conversation with Biden, Clinton and Obama. Special guests include celebrities like Queen Latifah, Lizzo, Ben Platt, Cynthia Erivo and Lea Michele.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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2 bodies found in truck at site of Baltimore bridge collapse as investigators pause search for missing workers, police say

Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse
Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse

Search pauses after 2 bodies found: Two construction workers were found trapped in a red pickup in the Patapsco River at the middle of the collapsed bridge, according to the Maryland State Police. Search efforts have been paused for the four other workers who are presumed dead, because additional vehicles are encased in concrete and other debris, making it unsafe for divers, Superintendent Col. Roland L. Butler said. Once salvage operations clear the debris, divers will search for more remains, he said. The workers were believed to be mending potholes on the bridge when it fell, officials said.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Fani Willis vows nothing ‘will derail’ Trump’s election interference trial

Fani Willis Fulton County DA
Fani Willis Fulton County DA

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis vowed to bring former President Donald Trump’s Georgia election interference case to trial in a letter to House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, arguing that her office has fully complied with a congressional subpoena related to a federal funding probe.

“[N]othing that you do will derail the efforts of my staff and I to bring the election interference prosecution to trial so that a jury of Fulton County citizens can determine the guilt or innocence of the defendants,” Willis wrote in the letter, which was sent on Monday.

The GOP-led House Judiciary Committee in February issued a subpoena to Willis for documents related to her office’s use of federal funds intended to support at-risk youth, according to a copy of the subpoena obtained by ABC News.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Trump ramps up attacks on judge in hush money case after gag order

Trump Mug Shot
Trump Mug Shot

Less than 24 hours after getting hit with a partial gag order in the New York criminal case involving his alleged falsification of business records, former President Donald Trump repeatedly lashed out at one person who’s not covered by the ruling — the judge.

On his social media platform, Trump called Judge Juan Merchan“biased and conflicted” while also taking aim at the judge’s daughter for a social media post that a court spokesperson said was wrongly attributed to her.

In a ruling Tuesday, Merchan noted the impending April 15 trial dateand said Trump must “refrain” from “making or directing others to make public statements about known or reasonably foreseeable witnesses concerning their potential participation” in the case, as well as about individual prosecutors and court staff and their family members.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Former Sen. Joe Lieberman has died at 82

Joe Lieberman
Joe Lieberman

Former Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman has died, his family announced in a statement Wednesday. He was 82.

Lieberman died Wednesday afternoon in New York with his wife, Hadassah, and other loved ones at his side after he suffered complications from a fall, his family said in the statement.

“Senator Lieberman’s love of God, his family, and America endured throughout his life of service in the public interest,” his family said.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

The Rude Pundit: Abortion in Louisiana… The Real Criminals Are the Ones Enforcing the Bans

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

It must be terrifying to be pregnant in Louisiana right now. The state broadly banned abortion, thanks to a 2006 trigger law that went into effect after the savages on the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in the 2022 Dobbs decision and handed control of women’s bodies to the states, subject to the whims of insane Christian nationalists and terrible leaders. It’s awful in many states, and Louisiana is one of the worst. The only exceptions to the abortion bans in Louisiana are if the mother’s life is in imminent danger and if the fetus is considered “medically futile,” a term not recognized by, you know the medical community, and wouldn’t survive. No exceptions for rape or incest.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Malcolm Nance: Are CIA-Ukrainian Terrorists in Moscow Making Our Bridge Collisions Gay?

Malcolm Nance
Malcolm Nance

The scene that unfolded on the night of 22 March at the Crocus City Hall in Moscow was one I had witnessed perhaps one hundred times in my career. A squad of gunmen, carrying only AK-47 automatic assault rifles and backpacks filled with extra ammunition, magazines, and explosives, stormed an unguarded public space and randomly started killing everyone they saw. This tactic, known as light infantry, weapons attack, or LIWA, has been the hallmark of terrorism since the 1960s. Virtually every terror group in the world has done this, from the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Al Fatah to the Shining Path guerillas of Peru.  However, what made this attack unique was the ideology behind the group and how it ended.

Read the rest of Malcolm Nance’s piece at and subscribe to his Substack

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A rare mayday preceded Baltimore bridge collapse: ‘I couldn’t think of a worse situation’

Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse
Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse

The Dali cargo ship was cruising away from the Port of Baltimore when its lights suddenly went out just after 1:24 a.m. Tuesday.  

The Singaporean vessel, which stretches nearly 1,000 feet long, had apparently lost power. It was now effectively rudderless and at the mercy of the currents.

“The worst sound you ever hear on a ship is dead silence, because that means everything’s gone wrong,” said Salvatore Mercogliano, a maritime expert and historian. 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Supreme Court Justices Question Why Abortion Pill Suit Is In Front Of Them

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

Supreme Court arguments on Tuesday, regarding the legality of federal regulations allowing the distribution of the abortion drug mifepristone through the mail, hinged on whether the anti-abortion doctors association that brought the case had standing to sue in the first place.

The case, known as FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine and combined with a similar case, centers on whether the Food and Drug Administration overlooked health and safety issues when it loosened restrictions around mifepristone, one of the two drugs used in medication abortion, in 2016 and 2021. The FDA approved mifepristone in 2000, and the medication has since been used by nearly 6 million people in the U.S., according to the department.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

NBC Fires Ronna McDaniel Amid Election Lies Backlash

Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP
Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP

Ronna McDaniel, the onetime head of the Republican National Committee who helped former President Donald Trump spread lies about the 2020 election, was axed from her job at NBC News on Tuesday, just one week after her hiring was announced.

McDaniel was ousted following a meeting of top executives from NBC amid growing backlash to her hiring last week. McDaniel used her position as the RNC chair to spread falsehoods about the 2020 presidential election, and continued calling the election results into question even after thousands of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

“Every one of us knows we can never let what we saw in 2020 happen ever again,” McDaniel said during her party’s summer meeting in August 2021. “Democrats waged war on election transparency, security and integrity — undermining our elections, and we at the RNC are using every tool at our disposal to protect the vote.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Judge Issues Gag Order Against Donald Trump In Hush Money Case

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

A New York judge Tuesday issued a gag order barring Donald Trumpfrom making public statements about witnesses, prosecutors, court staff and jurors in his upcoming hush-money criminal trial.

Judge Juan M. Merchan cited Trump’s previous comments about him and others involved in the case, as well as a looming April 15 trial date in granting the prosecution’s request for a gag order.

“It is without question that the imminency of the risk of harm is now paramount,” Merchan wrote.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Today is a FreeSpeech TV MATCH DAY

Well, it’s a new week and we’re pushing hard to close out the Spring Pledge Drive this week with everything we’ve got. Our Spring Frontline Funders stepped up to make today another match day! If you’re a new viewer, what that means is that anything you give today will be matched dollar-for-dollar. So, if you give $10, it’ll become $20. During today’s programming, each of us has to unlock $2,500 of match money. That means we need everyone out there watching to pitch in what they can, whatever that is! If we don’t unlock the match during the show, we lose it! Whether you’re a long-time viewer or new to our network, it’s important to know that all this is made possible by viewers like you. We’re nearly 100% viewer supported. That means, no corporations get to influence what and how we cover anything. That’s going to be particularly important as we face the 2024 elections that are already inundated with mis and disinformation. Your donation today will go twice as far and will help ensure our 2024 Get Out the Vote campaign and election coverage is healthy and thriving. Please donate now at freespeech.org/donate or call 877-378-8669. Thank you so much!

Israel cancels high-level meeting in Washington after U.S. abstains on cease-fire resolution

UN United Nations
UN United Nations
  • Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled a delegation that was supposed to visit the White House this week. He accused the U.S. of hurting Israel’s war effort by failing to veto the cease-fire resolution. President Joe Biden requested the delegation to discuss the looming ground invasion of Rafah and for the U.S. to offer alternative options to reduce potential civilian casualties.

Read the rest of the story and get updates at NBC News

Trump bond lowered to $175 million as he appeals civil fraud judgment in New York

Trump Black and White

A New York appeals court has given Donald Trump 10 more days to post his bond as he appeals the civil fraud judgment against him and cut the amount necessary to $175 million

It’s a major lifeline for the former president, who, along with his adult sons and his company, were fined more than $464 million, including interest, after Judge Arthur Engoron found Trump and his co-defendants fraudulently inflated the value of his assets.

The ruling staves off the prospect, for now, of New York Attorney General Letitia James seeking to seize the former president’s property to enforce the judgment against him. Trump had been struggling to come up with the means to post a bond of more than $500 million, the total that he would have needed before Monday’s appellate decision.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Trump Criminal Trial Is Set for April 15 as His Attempt at Delay Fails

Trump Mug Shot
Trump Mug Shot

Donald J. Trump is all but certain to become the first former American president to stand trial on criminal charges after a judge on Monday denied his effort to delay the proceeding and confirmed it would begin next month.

The trial, in which Mr. Trump will be accused of orchestrating the cover-up of a simmering sex scandal surrounding his 2016 presidential campaign, had originally been scheduled to start this week. But the judge, Juan M. Merchan, had pushed the start date to April 15 to allow Mr. Trump’s lawyers to review newly disclosed documents from a related federal investigation.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Charlie Pierce: The ‘Mainstream Media’ Isn’t the Bulwark Against Totalitarianism We Wish It Were

On the electric Xwitter machine, Brynn Tannehill brilliantly eviscerated this hopeless Politico piece about the consequences of a Trump presidency that makes Pollyanna read like Mickey Spillane. I recommend reading all of Tannehill’s demolition, but in light of events over the weekend, I’d like to concentrate on one element of the Politico story—the one that deals with my chosen profession and its continuing failure properly to confront the threat posed by El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago. In fact, the author cites the “mainstream media” as one of the primary bulwarks against encroaching authoritarianism.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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It’s FreeSpeech TV’s Spring Fund Drive!!

It’s Free Speech TV Fund Drive time and YOU can help us keep Free Speech TV free of corporate influence!! Together, we can make sure FSTV is here to fight back. To donate, call 877-378-8669, go to http://freespeech.org/donate, or text FSTV to 44-321 to become a sustaining member today!

Eric Trump, in Brutal Self-Own, Says Insurance Companies ‘Were Laughing’ as He Tried to Secure $464M Bond for Donald Trump

Eric Trump
Eric Trump

Donald Trump’s youngest adult son, Eric Trump, brutally self-owned on Fox News — saying that insurance companies “were laughing” when he tried to secure his father’s half-a-billion dollar bond.

The former president has until Monday to come up with $464 million he was ordered to pay in his New York fraud case or risk having Attorney General Letitia James begin seizing his assets, including his bank accounts and properties like Trump Tower.

Eric Trump told Sunday Morning Futures’ Maria Bartiromo that it’s impossible to secure such a large bond in the United States.

Read the rest of the story at Mediaite

Sen. Lisa Murkowski signals openness to leaving the GOP

Alaska Map
Alaska Map

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a vocal critic of former President Donald Trump, signaled that she would be open to leaving the Republican Party.

Pressed on whether she is considering becoming an independent, Murkowski replied, “I’m very independent-minded,” adding, “I just regret that our party is seemingly becoming a party of Donald Trump.”

Murkowski demurred when asked whether she would be open to being an independent who caucuses with Republicans.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Trump’s Options Dwindle as $454 Million Judgment Bears Down on Him Today

Trump Sad Leaving Plane
Trump Sad Leaving Plane

Monday is judgment day for former President Donald J. Trump — the day he fears a $454 million judgment against him might come due.

Hoping to stave off a financial crisis, Mr. Trump is racing the clock to block the New York attorney general from collecting the monetary penalty imposed in a civil fraud case. The attorney general, Letitia James, who brought the case accusing the former president of fraudulently inflating his net worth, has the power to freeze many of his bank accounts and begin the long, complicated process of seizing some of his properties.

Under New York law, Ms. James could have enforced the $454 million judgment once it became final last month, but she provided Mr. Trump a 30-day grace period that expires on Monday. Although Ms. James could move to collect at any moment, she is not expected to take any aggressive action Monday.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

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Barrett News Media: Stephanie Miller Still Brings Humor to Serious Topics 20 Years Into Syndicated Show

Barrett News Media
Barrett News Media

You could argue Stephanie Miller should be viewed as Republican royalty. The daughter of William E. Miller, the former New York Republican Representative, RNC Chairman, and 1964 running mate of Barry Goldwater, Miller would be a shoo-in conservative. But, that’s not the way her cookie has crumbled.

Miller is an unabashed liberal talk show host, with The Stephanie Miller Showserving as one of the largest programs on the political left. And despite a career spanning acting, stand-up comedy, and television, among others, Miller continues to be fueled by her radio show.

“It really honestly is my passion. I feel so lucky…I can’t believe I’m an adult and this is my job,” she joked. “It’s still just a lot of fun and I’m really passionate about what’s going on in our country.”

Read the rest of the piece at Barrett News Media

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Charlie Pierce: The Governor of South Dakota Is Promoting a Texas Dental Practice Now?

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

There’s an undeniable sideshow aspect to American conservatism these days. This would be comical if it weren’t in charge in places like South Dakota, where Governor Kristi Noem is the current hot attraction on the conservative midway. Noem is a loyal follower of El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago; over the weekend, she joined him as he unspooled at one of his wankfests in Ohio. She was often mentioned as a possible running mate. Which made it a fascinating national political story last week when she apparently embarked on a second career as a television pitchperson.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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The Rude Pundit: Regarding Bloodbaths… Let’s Remember What Trump Said Would Happen If Biden Was Elected in 2020 That Didn’t Happen

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

Republican presidential nominee and a shit-filled garbage bag with a bewigged, rotting rump roast on top, Donald Trump, loves to promise that violence and horror is coming unless he is elected. Forget that actual horror and violence happened while he was president. Oh, no. We’re supposed to look back at the riots and disease four years ago and nod, like delusional fucks, that, yes, we are better off now than we were then. 

 
In every “speech” (if by “speech,” you mean, “a maniacal march through a miasma of mendacity and madness that would make Lovecraft scream for it to stop”), Trump paints a Brueghelesque picture of streets overrun with immigrant demons who drag precious white maidens into a gaping Hellmouth, where pig-faced criminals run through innocent chain stores and ransack them, dragging their booty to their homes made of fetus bones, where cities crumble as a demonic leader cackles while cutting off the genitals of children and forcing them to use unholy pronouns. If you think I’m making this up or exaggerating for grotesque effect, check out what Trump really said this past weekend. From migrants being “not human” to a “bloodbath” for the economy if he’s not restored to the White House, Trump gleefully baits and bashes with abandon. If Joe Biden is re-elected, Trump ominously intones, the world as we know it will cease to be and we will become slaves. 
 

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SM Happy Hour VideoCast with Dana Eagle & Joy Reid – 3-15-24

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Fulton County judge says Fani Willis disqualification ruling ‘should be out Friday’

Fani Willis Fulton County DA
Fani Willis Fulton County DA

Judge Scott McAfee said his long-awaited ruling on the effort to disqualify Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis “should” come out Friday.

“I made a promise to everybody. These kind of orders take time to write. I need to make sure I say exactly what I want to, and I plan to stick to the timeline I gave everyone,” McAfee said, according to ABC affiliate WSB who spoke to him Thursday evening.

“Should be out tomorrow,” he continued.

Attorneys for several defendants have been pushing for the disqualification of Willis from the Georgia election interference case against former President Donald Trump and 18 others.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Prosecutors Request Delay Of Trump’s Hush Money Trial

Trump Black and White

In a surprise move on Thursday, prosecutors in New York asked a judge to push back former President Donald Trump’s criminal hush money trial by up to 30 days in order to allow all parties time to sort through a cache of potential new evidence.

The case, centering on payments made to silence accusations of extramarital affairs in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election, had been set to go to trial on March 25 as the first of its kind for a former president.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said in a court filing that, although his office is still prepared to begin trial on the scheduled date, they would prefer more time in light of the fact that the U.S. Attorney’s Office only recently released tens of thousands of pages of records in response to a subpoena from Trump’s legal team.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Judge denies one of Trump’s motions to dismiss classified documents case

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

The judge presiding over the federal criminal case involving former President Donald Trump’s handling of classified documents denied one of his two motions to dismiss the case Thursday, saying the motion was premature.

U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon found that Trump’s argument — that the main statute prosecutors are using against him is unconstitutionally vague as it applies to presidents — is better-suited to be addressed later “in connection with jury-instruction briefing and/or other appropriate motions.”

Cannon issued the ruling shortly after a daylong hearing on Trump’s motions to toss the case, with Trump in attendance. Cannon, whom Trump nominated to the bench, made it clear she was skeptical of his attorneys’ arguments on their other motion to dismiss, which contends that the Presidential Records Act bars his prosecution. 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

James Crumbley, father of Ethan Crumbley, found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in son’s school shooting

A jury on Thursday convicted James Crumbley of involuntary manslaughter in connection with his teenage son’s deadly school shooting in 2021, in step with his wife, who was found guilty last month on the same charge.

The jury’s decision after about 10 hours of deliberations caps a landmark case that for the first time in the U.S. held the parents of a mass school shooter criminally responsible. James and Jennifer Crumbley’s son, Ethan, who was 15 when he opened fire at Oxford High School in suburban Detroit, pleaded guilty as an adult and was sentenced in December to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

“These were egregious facts in this case. These parents could have prevented this tragedy. It was foreseeable,” Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald said after the verdict.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Hunter Biden Gun Case Gets June 3 Trial Date As Judge Mulls Motions To Dismiss

Hunter Biden
Hunter Biden

Hunter Biden could face trial in Delaware on federal firearms charges as soon as June, in the midst of his father’s reelection campaign.

U.S. District Judge Maryellen Noreika set the tentative date during a short telephonic hearing Wednesday, though she is still weighing several defense motions to toss out the case against the president’s son that could yet derail any potential trial.

The trial is slated to begin June 3 and could last up to nine days. A separate trial on tax charges against him in California is now tentatively set to begin later that month.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Elon Musk Cancels Don Lemon’s Show On X Right After Their Interview

X Formerly Twitter
X Formerly Twitter

Elon Musk must have been really unhappy with his recent interview with former CNNanchor Don Lemon.

That’s because he canceled a proposed X partnership right after Lemon interviewed him for his new show, which had been set to debut on the platform March 18.

Lemon made the announcement on X Wednesday and said the cancellation came “hours after an interview I conducted with him on Friday.”

The interview is still the show’s premiere episode, but it will run on YouTube instead.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Judge in Georgia election interference case dismisses three counts against Trump

The judge presiding over the election interference casein Georgia has dismissed some of the criminal counts against former President Donald Trump.

In a ruling Wednesday, Judge Scott McAfee found that six of the counts in the indictment against Trump and some of his co-defendants, including his former chief of staff Mark Meadows and lawyer Rudy Giuliani, lacked sufficient detail. The judge left open the possibility that prosecutors could re-file the counts.

“As written, these six counts contain all the essential elements of the crimes but fail to allege sufficient detail regarding the nature of their commission, i.e., the underlying felony solicited. They do not give the Defendants enough information to prepare their defenses intelligently,” McAfee wrote.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

House passes bill that could ban TikTok in the U.S., sending it to the Senate

Capitol Washington DC
Capitol Washington DC

The House voted Wednesday to pass legislation thatcould ban TikTok in the U.S. as Republicans and Democrats alike sound the alarm that the popular video-sharing app, owned by a China-based company, is a national security threat.

The vote was 352-65, with one member, Rep. Jasmine Crockett, D-Texas, voting present. The bill now heads to the Senate, where it faces an uncertain fate and there appears to be less urgency to act.

“Communist China is America’s largest geopolitical foe and is using technology to actively undermine America’s economy and security,” Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., said in a statement after the vote, warning that TikTok could be used to access American data and spread “harmful” information.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Malcolm Nance: Biden’s Joint Task Force Gaza Says Dead US Soldiers and Sailors is a Reality You May Need to Accept

Malcolm Nance
Malcolm Nance

President Biden announced during the State of the Union that he was ordering the US military to conduct “an emergency mission” to establish a pier that would allow sea cargo to return to the Port of Gaza. The purpose of this effort would be to increase the flow of humanitarian traffic and goods directly into North Gaza, bypassing the severe restrictions Egypt and Israel place on truck cargo.  It sounds like a pretty good idea, except that it would be taking place in a ruined city, with virtually no infrastructure, and rely on the protection of the Israeli army to make sure US service members are not killed or captured by Hamas terrorists.

I mean, given the rabid intensity of hatred towards Israel and the United States by Palestinians, Iran, Russia, and Trump … What could go wrong?

Read the rest of Malcolm Nance’s piece at and subscribe to his Substack

Trump’s newfound opposition to a TikTok ban isn’t swaying Republicans

Tik Tok TikTok
Tik Tok TikTok

Former President Trump reversed course and now opposes a ban on social media giant TikTok. But his new stance — and a full-court press from TikTok and its millions of users — isn’t swaying his fellow Republicans on Capitol Hill.

House GOP leaders are charging ahead with a vote Wednesday on legislation that would ban TikTok from U.S. app stores unless its parent company, China-based ByteDance, agrees to divest the popular video-based video app.

And even some of Trump’s conservative allies in Congress said they have no problem calling out their party’s presumptive nominee for president over his newfound position on TikTok.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

5 Takeaways From Hur’s Testimony About the Biden Classified Documents Inquiry

US Capitol Washington DC
US Capitol Washington DC

Robert K. Hur, the former special counsel who investigated President Biden’s possession of classified documents after he left the vice presidency, testified before the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday.

Republicans grilled Mr. Hur about his conclusion that the evidence was insufficient to charge Mr. Biden with a crime. Democrats, for their part, attacked him for disparaging remarks in his report about Mr. Biden’s mental acuity — including calling him a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory” who had “diminished faculties in advancing age.”

Read the rest of the story and see the Top 5 list at The New York Times

Aaron Rodgers and Jesse Ventura Top R.F.K. Jr.’s List for Running Mate

Robert Kennedy
Robert Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has recently approached the N.F.L. quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the former Minnesota governor and professional wrestler Jesse Ventura about serving as his running mate on an independent presidential ticket, and both have welcomed the overtures, two people familiar with the discussions said.

Mr. Kennedy confirmed on Tuesday that the two men were at the top of his list. It is not clear if either has been formally offered the post, however, and Mr. Kennedy is still considering a shortlist of potential candidates, the people familiar with the discussions said.

Mr. Kennedy said that he had been speaking with Mr. Rodgers “pretty continuously” for the past month, and that he had been in touch with Mr. Ventura since the former governor introduced him at a campaign event last month in Arizona.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Donald Trump and Joe Biden Clinch Their Party Nominations

Trump and Biden
Trump and Biden

President Biden and former President Donald J. Trump on Tuesday secured the delegates necessary to clinch their parties’ presidential nominations, according to The Associated Press, cementing a general election rematch in November months in the making.

Both men and their campaigns have long anticipated this moment. Mr. Biden faced only token opposition in the Democratic primary, as is typical for a sitting president, while Mr. Trump had been his party’s dominant front-runner for months.

Their November collision began to look even more likely after Mr. Trump scored a decisive win in Iowa in January. His victory cleared the field of all but one of his major Republican rivals and put him on a glide path to his party’s nomination. His last remaining primary challenger, Nikki Haley, suspended her campaign last week, further clearing a path that had already been remarkably free of obstacles for a candidate facing considerable legal problems.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

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Writer E. Jean Carroll Could Sue Trump For Defamation Again, Her Lawyer Suggests

E Jean Carroll
E Jean Carroll

An attorney representing E. Jean Carroll suggested the writer might again sue former President Donald Trump for defamation after he began to launch attacks against her once more, despite a recent $83.3 million judgment penalizing him for similar remarks.

Roberta Kaplan, Carroll’s lead attorney, made the comments after Trump, at a campaign rally in Georgia, complained about the $91.6 million bond he posted earlier this month to cover the $83.3 million jury award for defamation as he appeals the verdict. The former president said the verdict was “based on false accusations made about me by a woman that I knew nothing about,” adding that he “didn’t know” and had “never heard of” Carroll.

“The woman is not a believable person,” Trump told the crowd of his supporters. He later went on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Monday to complain once more, calling the writer “Miss Bergdorf Goodman” and saying he had “no idea who she is.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump Asks Court To Delay Hush Money Trial Until SCOTUS Rules On Immunity Claims

Donald Trump is seeking to delay his March 25 hush money trial until the Supreme Court rules on the presidential immunity claims he raised in another of his criminal cases.

The Republican former president’s lawyers on Monday asked Manhattan Judge Juan Manuel Merchan to adjourn the New York criminal trial indefinitely until Trump’s immunity claim in his Washington, D.C., election interference case is resolved. Merchan did not immediately rule.

Trump contends he is immune from prosecution for conduct alleged to involve official acts during his tenure in office. His lawyers argue some of the evidence and alleged acts in the hush money case overlap with his time in the White House and constitute official acts.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Republican National Committee senior staffers among employees terminated after Trump takeover

republican elephant GOP
republican elephant GOP

At least four senior staffers were among the Republican National Committee employees who were terminated Monday as the Trump campaign brass more formally took the reins of the RNC, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

One of the key staffers to depart was Elliot Echols, the RNC’s political director.

The RNC met in Houston last week to install a pair of new leaders selected by Trump: Chairman Michael Whatley, who previously led the North Carolina Republican Party, and Trump’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump as co-chair. Former RNC chair Ronna McDaniel agreed to step down last month after Trump formally endorsed Whatley.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Former Mar-a-Lago worker comes forward and describes moving materials in Trump classified docs case

Trump Classified Documents
Trump Classified Documents

A man who says he worked at Mar-a-Lago is going public with his recollection of events leading up to the FBI’s search of Donald Trump’s Florida residence over the former president’s alleged mishandling of classified documents.

In a televised interview with CNN, Brian Butler said he helped Trump aide Walt Nauta load about 10 to 15 boxes onto Trump’s plane at the West Palm Beach airport near his resort in June 2022, when representatives from the Justice Department were meeting with Trump and his attorneys about unreturned classified material.

Butler, whom CNN identified as “Trump Employee 5” in an indictment filed by special counsel Jack Smith, said in the interview that aired Monday that the boxes were “the boxes that were in the indictment, the white banker’s boxes,” referring to photos in the federal indictment.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Charlie Pierce: I No Longer Believe The Republican Party Will Ever Return To Normalcy

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

In Wisconsin, the political class has finally emerged, blinking and staggering, out of the long, gerrymandered nightmare that began with the election of Scott Walker a decade or so ago, only to discover that, yes, once again, the experiment has gotten out of the lab. From the AP (via Politico):

Supporters of the recall campaign plan to present signatures Monday to the Wisconsin Elections Commission, saying they have more than the required 6,850 signatures from voters in Vos’ southeast Wisconsin district. “With more than 10,000 signatures on our recall petition, they’ve said it loud and clear: they’re tired of the status quo and demand new representation,” Matt Snorek, who started the campaign in January, said in a statement. Vos has dismissed the recall attempt as a waste of time and resources, which he reiterated in a statement Sunday. He questioned the group’s tactics and the validity of the signatures, promising that a team he had assembled would “evaluate each individual signature.”

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

Harry Litman: For the second time in days, the Supreme Court helped make another Trump presidency possible

The Supreme Court held Monday that a single state such as Colorado can’t prohibit Donald Trump from running for president as an insurrectionist under the 14th Amendment. It was the second time in less than a week that the court provided a crucial boost to the former president’s campaign to return to the White House.

The court’s strong inclination to restore Trump to the ballot was clear from the oral argument in the case last month, and indeed the justices reversed the Colorado Supreme Court unanimously. The “per curiam,” or “by the court,” opinion further emphasized that the court was speaking with a single voice.

Read the rest of Harry Litman’s piece at The Los Angeles Times

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Dispute Over Gaza War Heats Up Between Biden and Netanyahu

Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War
Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War

A day after President Biden asserted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was “hurting Israel more than helping Israel,” Mr. Netanyahu dismissed that contention as “wrong,” escalating the leaders’ increasingly public dispute.

Mr. Netanyahu, in an interview with Politico that was to be aired on Sunday night, challenged Mr. Biden’s assessment of Israel’s military strategy in the Gaza Strip, saying that his policies represented the “overwhelming majority” of Israelis.

“I don’t know exactly what the president meant, but if he meant by that that I’m pursuing private policies against the majority, the wish of the majority of Israelis, and that this is hurting the interests of Israel, then he’s wrong on both counts,” Mr. Netanyahu told Politico. An excerpt from the interview was released by the prime minister’s office.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Biden team brings in $10 million in the 24 hours after the State of the Union

dollars money bills
dollars money bills

President Joe Biden’s re-election machine brought in $10 million in the 24 hours following his State of the Union address on Thursday — a financial jolt as the campaign looks to build general election momentum off the speech.

The sum, which was shared first with NBC News, is a record for Biden’s re-election effort, the campaign said. And it’s notable even in the context of big political fundraising numbers. Biden’s campaign and affiliated committees powering the Democratic National Committee and other party groups raised $42 million in the entire month of January, for example.

The money flowed in via approximately 116,000 donations from 113,000 contributors, a senior Biden campaign adviser said. And the total builds on Biden’s early financial advantage over former President Donald Trump.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Sen. Katie Britt attempts to clean up her misleading State of the Union response

speech microphone
speech microphone

Alabama GOP Sen. Katie Britt on Sunday responded to allegations that her response to President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address was misleading.

The criticism centers on a story Britt told about a victim of human trafficking, which she implied happened during Biden’s tenure.

Britt spoke in her Thursday-night speech about visiting the U.S.-Mexico border in 2023 and speaking to this woman.

“She had been sex-trafficked by the cartels starting at age 12. She told me not just that she was raped every day, but how many times a day she was raped,” Britt said in her response to the State of the Union.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

‘Oppenheimer’ dominates Oscars, collecting trio of major awards among its 7 wins

oscars oscar academy award trophy
oscars oscar academy award trophy

“Oppenheimer,” Christopher Nolan’s portrait of the father of the atomic bomb, won best picture Sunday at the 96th Academy Awards, along with six other awards.

The movie dominated the night, earning honors for best director (Nolan), best actor (Cillian Murphy), best supporting actor (Robert Downey Jr.), best cinematography (Hoyte van Hoytema), best film editing (Jennifer Lame) and best original score (Ludwig Göransson).

“Movies are just a little bit over 100 years old,” Nolan said in his best director acceptance speech. “Imagine being there 100 years into painting or theater. We don’t know where this incredible journey is going from here. But to know that you think that I’m a meaningful part of it means the world to me.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

The Rude Pundit: The State of the Union is, Finally, “Eat Sh**, Republicans”

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

One of my greatest worries in Joe Biden becoming president was that he “believes that his capacity to forgive and forget with Republicans is an asset” and that he could “work in partnership with Republicans.” I said that back in 2019 as one reason that I didn’t support him in our innocent, pre-pandemic period. And in his previous State of the Union in 2023, that Joe Biden was still on display as he praised vile hate-goblin Mitch McConnell and said, “To my Republican friends, if we could work together in the last Congress, there is no reason we can’t work together in this new Congress,” adding multiple pleas for such unity of purpose.

Well, something shook loose because the President Biden who delivered the 2024 State of the Union last week was fucking done trying win over the savages on the GOP side. And, amid the right-wing commentariat’s hand-wringing about how “political” and “angry” Biden’s speech was, there was an air of “oh, fuck” to their typical nonsense. Some of that “oh, fuck” came from Biden’s display of energy, which threw them off their game of endlessly calling Biden “sleepy” or “weak.” Over on Fox “news,” Sean  Hannity, who always looks like he’s about to burp up a little bit of that puppy he ate, hilariously said Biden’s speech was “frightening” and called Biden “Jacked-Up Joe” because “he sounded like a hyper-caffeinated, angry old man.” Frankly, “Jacked-Up Joe” is an awesome nickname. Nutzoid right-wing spoogesock the Washington Times got a doctor to say that Biden had to be on Adderall to have that much energy. (This same psychiatrist told paper in 2021 that “parents are losing their teens…to the influence of teachers, peers and social media pushing political agendas,” so, really, she’s just there to polish the bullshit the Washington Times craps out.)

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

SM Happy Hour VideoCast with Barb McQuade & Brooklyn Dad Defiant – 3-8-24

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Biden announces ’emergency’ US military mission to build pier off Gaza coast to deliver aid

Pier Navy Battleship
Pier Navy Battleship

During his State of the Union speech on Thursday night, President Joe Biden announced an “emergency” military mission to construct a port in the Mediterranean Sea on Gaza’s coast to get humanitarian aid in.

“I’m directing the U.S. military to lead an emergency mission to establish a temporary pier in the Mediterranean on the Gaza coast that can receive large ships carrying food, water, medicine and temporary shelters,” Biden said in his address to Congress from the U.S. Capitol

“No U.S. boots will be on the ground,” he said. “This temporary pier would enable a massive increase in the amount of humanitarian assistance getting into Gaza every day. But Israel must also do its part.”

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Marjorie Taylor Greene Dons MAGA Hat, Accosts Biden At State Of The Union

Marjorie Taylor Greene MAGA Hat SOTU
Marjorie Taylor Greene MAGA Hat SOTU

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) put on a red “Make America Great Again” hat as President Joe Biden entered the House chamber to give his State of the Union address on Thursday.

Greene grabbed a seat near the center aisle so she could make a video of herself greeting Biden. She handed him a pin bearing the name of Laken Riley, a 22-year-old college student who was murdered last month.

“Laken Riley,” Green said in her video.

“I know how to say the name,” Biden said as he accepted the pin, with Greene responding, “Say her name.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Sen. Katie Britt’s ‘Deeply Weird’ Biden Response Is Freaking People Out

Katie Britt GOP Response
Katie Britt GOP Response

Sen. Katie Britt (R-Ala.) found her name trending on social media on Thursday night, but perhaps not for reasons she may have wanted.

Britt delivered the Republican rebuttal to President Joe Biden’s State of the Union addressfrom her kitchen with theatrical flourishes, such as taking a deep, dramatic breath after using the word “breathtaking.”

In one short stretch, her tone shifted from happy and nearly laughing to nearly tearful and then angry.

If the speech was theatrical, plenty of people were ready to play critic ― and many of them panned the unusual approach.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

‘Wake up’: Biden delivers fiery State of the Union — sparring with critics and swiping at Trump

Biden State of the Union SOTU 2024
Biden State of the Union SOTU 2024

President Joe Biden said he wanted to use his State of the Union to “wake up” Congress, but he was the one who seemed suddenly energized as he sparred with Republican hecklers and repeatedly criticized former President Donald Trump.

Shaking off lackluster approval ratings and his own party’s anxiety about his political and physical health, the 81-year-old delivered on Thursday one of the feistiest and most political presidential addresses to Congress in recent memory.

He referenced “my predecessor” 13 times, not saying Trump’s name once but making him a clear focus of his speech, shouted back at firebrand Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., and sarcastically mocked Republican lawmakers.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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SEXY LIBERAL PRE-SALE TICKETS GO ON SALE AT 10AM LOCAL TIME THIS MORNING

Sexy Liberal Save The World Tour All Dates
Sexy Liberal Save The World Tour All Dates

Pre-sale tickets for the Sexy Liberal “Save The World” Tour go on sale THIS MORNING at 10am local time… but only if you have the super-secret code: KEY

The ONLY ticket links you should use are at SexyLiberal.com – DO NOT GOOGLE ANYTHING because you will get scalper and fake ticket links.  Only use the links at SexyLiberal.com

See you at the shows!!

Nikki Haley ends presidential campaign with ‘no regrets,’ ceding GOP nomination to Trump

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley dropped out of the 2024 presidential race Wednesday after losing every state but Vermont in Super Tuesday’s primary contests, ceding the Republican nomination to former President Donald Trump.

Haley’s decision to end her campaign effectively kicks off the general election, with Trump and President Joe Biden taking unofficial command of their parties early in primary season after a string of victories.

“I am filled with the gratitude for the outpouring of support we’ve received from all across our great country, but the time has now come to suspend my campaign,” Haley said in a speech Wednesday morning. “I said I wanted Americans to have their voices heard — I have done that. I have no regrets. And although I will no longer be a candidate, I will not stop using my voice for the things I believe in.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Mitch McConnell Endorses Trump, Whom He Once Denounced

Three years after delivering a scorching denouncement of Donald J. Trump after the Jan. 6 riot, Senator Mitch McConnell endorsed him for president on Wednesday, illustrating Mr. Trump’s power to bend the Republican Party to his will as he marches to the G.O.P. nomination.

Mr. McConnell, the Senate Republican minority leader, and Mr. Trump had not said a word to each other since December 2020. But people close to both men had been working behind the scenes for weeks to pave the way for the endorsement.

The Kentucky Republican had been the highest-ranking member of the party to withhold an endorsement for Mr. Trump. And for the former president, Mr. McConnell’s backing could be important as he tries to corral some Republican donors who have been leery of him.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Biden Preps for the State of the Union Speech and Rowdy Republicans

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

Fueled by throat-soothing tea, guided by teleprompters and surrounded by six aides and one historian, President Biden spent hours at Camp David last weekend honing a State of the Union speech that will be watched by one of his biggest audiences before the November election.

So the pressure is on.

Mr. Biden, it should be noted, had with him at Camp David a copy of “Possible: How We Survive (and Thrive) in an Age of Conflict,” a book by William Ury, an international negotiation expert.

“You’ll hear me on Thursday,” Mr. Biden said when reporters asked on Tuesday about his preparations.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

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Surprise! Nikki Haley Beats Donald Trump In Vermont GOP Presidential Primary

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley on Tuesday pulled out a surprise win against Donald Trump in the Republican presidential primary in Vermont.

She was right on the edge of winning more than 50% of the vote late Tuesday, as a small percentage of remaining votes were still being tallied. If she does, she’ll net herself 17 delegates. If she stays below 50%, the delegates will be spread out between her and others on the ballot.

It’s the second time the former South Carolina governor has topped Trump in a GOP primary. She picked up 19 delegates on Sunday after winning the primary in Washington, D.C.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ) Announces She Won’t Seek Reelection

Kyrsten Sinema
Kyrsten Sinema

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) announced on Tuesday she won’t be seeking reelection in November, ending months of speculation about her political future.

In a video released by her office, Sinema complained about the death of civility and compromise in American politics.`

“The only political victories that matter these days are symbolic, attacking your opponents on cable news or social media. Compromise is a dirty word,” Sinema said. “I believe in my approach. But, it’s not what America wants right now.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Biden to launch task force to crack down on ‘unfair and illegal pricing’ amid rising inflation

Biden Speaking
Biden Speaking

President Joe Biden on Tuesday will launch a new task force to take on “unfair and illegal” corporate pricing, which Biden sees as a major reason why consumers are not yet feeling the impact of cooling inflation rates and a strong economy.

The task force will be jointly led by the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice, two agencies at the forefront of the Biden administration’s aggressive regulatory agenda over the past three years.

“We’re excited to be co-chairing the president’s new Strike Force on Unfair and Illegal Pricing, which builds on the FTC’s far-reaching work to promote competition and tackle unlawful business practices that are inflating costs for Americans,” FTC Chair Lina Khan told reporters on a call Monday.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Five Super Tuesday takeaways on a big night for Biden and Trump

Super Tuesday Voting Election Vote
Super Tuesday Voting Election Vote

Primaries and caucuses in 16 states and American Samoa have brought further clarity to a presidential race that has been on a glide path to a rematch of the 2020 election. 

But the Super Tuesday contests also have offered the first clues about down-ballot races that will help determine control of statehouses and Congress this November.

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump remain on track to face off again in the fall. Biden continued to outperform marginal opposition for the Democratic nomination. And former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley continued to struggle to win over Republican voters — even in states that on paper seemed more favorable to her.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Malcolm Nance: Remember Them… Two People Who Deserve a Trumpless America This November

Malcolm Nance
Malcolm Nance

This story has been an extremely difficult one to write.  Because my heart is breaking as I do it. I returned from Israel a couple of weeks ago, and a pair of terrible personal events has placed me in a very dark mood, is illuminating how serious is the situation we face.

First, a tragic event occurred that impacted me personally and took me back to the grievous and tempestuous days after I had lost my wife.  Then the second whammy hit. And now I am in Germany trying to save a man’s future.

About six weeks ago before I left for Israel, I had met the daughter of a friend who was an up-and-coming social media management star. She had been a fashion model for years but was now a beautiful and vibrant 32-year-old woman.  She was intensely sharp and quite witty.  She offered her services to help me with the marketing of my project and was even willing to come along to Israel, a country at war but a country she loved.

Read the rest of Malcolm Nance’s piece at and subscribe to his Substack

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Amy Coney Barrett disagreed with the majority over Trump, but admonished the liberals instead

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

Justice Amy Coney Barrett packed two very different messages into her one-page opinion on Monday as the Supreme Court declared states could not toss former President Donald Trump off the ballot.

She chastised her colleagues on the right for breaking significant – and in her mind unnecessary – ground in the breadth of their legal reasoning.

But then she admonished the court’s three liberal justices, who also split from the majority’s legal rationale, in unusually biting terms.

“In my judgment, this is not the time to amplify disagreement with stridency,” Barrett wrote. “The Court has settled a politically charged issue in the volatile season of a Presidential election. Particularly in this circumstance, writings on the Court should turn the national temperature down, not up.”

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Will Super Tuesday be Haley’s last stand against Trump? It’s ‘all about how competitive we can be’

Vote Election Ballot
Vote Election Ballot

Nikki Haley has repeatedly promised to remain in the Republican primary raceagainst Donald Trump until Super Tuesday, which offers the last big chance for the former governor and ambassador to start catching up to the former president in delegates for their party’s 2024 nomination.

But Haley has also repeatedly hedged on her plans after Tuesday, turning the day’s results — across 15 states — into a potentially pivotal moment in the course of her campaign.

“Super Tuesday, we’re going to try to be competitive. I hope we go forward,” she said on Friday. “But this is all about how competitive we can be.”

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Kamala Harris Meets Israeli Cabinet Official Despite Netanyahu’s Rebuke

Vice President Kamala Harris met on Monday with a member of Israel’s wartime Cabinet who came to Washington in defiance of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the Biden administration intensifies its efforts to push more humanitarian aid into war-battered Gaza.

White House officials said Benny Gantz, a centrist political rival of Netanyahu, requested the meeting and that the Democratic administration believed it was important that Harris sit down with the prominent Israeli official despite Netanyahu’s objections.

President Joe Biden, Harris and other senior administration officials have become increasingly blunt about their dissatisfaction with the mounting death toll in Gaza and the suffering of innocent Palestinians as the war nears the five-month mark.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Supreme Court rules states can’t kick Trump off the ballot

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court on Monday handed a sweeping win to former President Donald Trump by ruling that states cannot kick him off the ballot over his actions leading up to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol — bringing a swift end to a case with huge implications for the 2024 election.

In an unsigned ruling with no dissents, the court reversed the Colorado Supreme Court, which had determined that Trump could not serve again as president under Section 3 of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment.

The provision prohibits those who previously held government positions but later “engaged in insurrection” from running for various offices.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Charlie Pierce: This Supreme Court Decision On The Colorado Ballot Is A Death Threat To The 14th Amendment

It turns out that there is gambling going on in here. From NBC News:

The court in an unsigned ruling with no dissents reversed the Colorado Supreme Court, which determined that Trump could not serve again as president under section 3 of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment. The court said the Colorado Supreme Court had wrongly assumed that states can determine whether a presidential candidate is ineligible under a provision of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment. The ruling makes it clear that Congress, not states, has to set rules on how the 14th Amendment provision can be enforced. As such the decision applies to all states, not just Colorado.

There is the unmistakable aroma of chickenshit to this ruling. An unsigned ruling with no dissents? Sonia? Elena? Ketanji? Hello? Is anybody there? Is this thing on? Testing — one, two? Hello? This lines up neatly with Bush v. Gore on the roster of ring-and-run Supreme Court decisions regarding election law.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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The Rude Pundit: Democrats Should Go on the Offensive Against the Supreme Court

The Rude Pundit
The Rude Pundit

Look, the Supreme Court is not some super secret cabal of demigods who fly above the filthy, earthbound realm of politics. No, they are nine human being who shit and fart and fuck (one would hope), and you only need to look at the highly political negotiations behind the scenes when decisions are being made to understand that. 

And Supreme Court is the top of the Judiciary, one of three supposedly co-equal branches of government. It’s like the president is the top of the Executive branch and the leaders of the Congress…you get the fuckin’ idea. And the president has no problem talking shit about Congress and vice versa. But, for some reason, while it’s fine to talk shit about lower courts, there’s this bright line around the Supreme Court.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Congressional leaders release 6 spending bills to avoid a partial shutdown

US Capitol Washington DC
US Capitol Washington DC

Congressional leaders on Sunday came out with a package of six bills setting full-year spending levels for some federal agencies, a step forward in a long overdue funding process beset by sharp political divisions between the two parties as well as infighting among House Republicans.

The release of the text of legislation over the weekend was designed to meet the House’s rule to give lawmakers at least 72 hours to study a bill before voting. And it’s a promising sign that lawmakers will avoid a partial shutdown that would kick in at 12:01 a.m. Saturday for those agencies covered under the bill, such as Veterans Affairs, Agriculture, Transportation, Justice and others.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Nikki Haley Defeats Donald Trump In D.C. GOP Presidential Primary

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley on Sunday defeated Donald Trump in the GOP presidential primary in Washington, D.C., her first win against the former president.

It’s a relatively tiny victory, one Trump will almost certainly use to portray Haley as a creature of the D.C. swamp. D.C.’s 19 delegates will now cast their votes for her at the Republican National Convention in July. That’s out of 2,429 delegates, and so far, Trump has trounced her in all of the other state GOP primaries.

As of Sunday’s election results, Trump has a total of 244 delegates and Haley now has 43. Whoever is first to hit 1,215 delegates will be the Republican presidential nominee. Trump is expected to get much closer following this week’s Super Tuesday primaries, where polls show him dominating from coast to coast.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Kamala Harris Calls On Hamas To Agree To Immediate 6-Week Cease-Fire

Vice President Kamala Harris called for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza as Israel’s relentless bombardment of the region pushes forward.

“The threat of Hamas poses to the people of Israel must be eliminated. And given the immense scale of suffering in Gaza, there must be an immediate cease-fire for at least the next six weeks, which is what is currently on the table” Harris said Sunday in Selma, Alabama. Harris made her appearance at the Edmund Pettus Bridge for a speech on the anniversary of “Bloody Sunday.”

“This will get the hostages out and a significant amount of aid in. This would allow us to build something more enduring to ensure Israel is secure and to respect the right of the Palestinian people to dignity, freedom and self-determination,” she added.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Supreme Court to release decisions Monday, with Trump Colorado ruling a strong possibility

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court has indicated it will issue rulings on Monday, one of which could be the highly anticipated decision on whether Colorado can kick former President Donald Trump off the primary ballot.

The court noted on its website on Sunday afternoon that rulings are expected.

Trump is currently set to appear on the state primary ballot on Tuesday after a hold was placed on the Colorado Supreme Court ruling that deemed him ineligible due to his efforts to defy the 2020 election results.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Biden Says North Gaza Killings At Aid Convoy Will Complicate Negotiations

War Peace Cease Fire Truce
War Peace Cease Fire Truce

President Joe Biden said on Thursday that he believes negotiations for a possible truce between Israel and Hamas will be complicated by an incident where Gaza officials say Israeli troops killed more than 100 starving Palestinians trying to access aid.

Earlier that day, Israeli forces in Gaza City fired at a crowd of Palestinians after the enclave’s northern region received its first major aid delivery in a month. Hundreds of Palestinian civilians, who are being starved by the lack of aid, began pulling flour and canned goods off the trucks when witnesses said troops began shooting at them.

Medics found “dozens or hundreds” lying on the ground at the scene, Kamal Adwan Hospital official Fares Afana told The Associated Press. Because there were so many bodies, Afana said some of the victims had to be wheeled to the hospital in carts pulled by horses and donkeys instead of ambulances. Video taken by a Gaza journalist shows medics assisting a single donkey carrying a cart that has a pile of bodies stacked on top of each other.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Jack Smith Proposes July 8 Start Date For Donald Trump’s Classified Documents Trial

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

Special counsel Jack Smith proposed a July 8 start date for the trial into former President Donald Trump’s handling of classified documents, according to court filings on Thursday.

U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon is set to hold a hearing on the timing of the trial on Friday. If she agrees to Smith’s timeline, the former president would be forced to defend himself just before the Republican National Convention begins and the party officially selects its presidential nominee. The RNC will be held from July 15 to 18 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Trump’s attorneys rejected Smith’s timeline in a filing of their own Thursday, saying the former president would not receive a fair trial while he was simultaneously campaigning for the presidency. He pushed for the trial, to be held in Florida, to begin after the 2024 presidential election, but also offered up Aug. 12 as an alternative start date.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Congress averts a government shutdown, sending a short-term funding bill to Biden

US Capitol Washington DC
US Capitol Washington DC

Congress sent a short-term funding bill to President Joe Biden’s desk Thursday, averting a partial government shutdown this weekend and buying lawmakers more time to fund federal agencies through September.

The Senate passed the stopgap measure, known as a continuing resolution, or CR, on a 77-13 vote; 60 votes were needed for passage under an agreement between the parties. Earlier in the day, the legislation cleared the House on a 320-99 vote.

“It’s good we’re not shutting down. And now let us finish the job of funding the government so we don’t have to do this again,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said before the vote. “As I’ve said repeatedly to the speaker, the only way to get things done in divided government is bipartisanship. I’m glad the speaker heard our plea and worked with us to avoid a shutdown next week.” 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden invites Trump to work together to lobby Congress on an immigration bill as both candidates visit border

Both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump visited the southern border Thursday in a dramatic split-screen moment as the 2024 presidential campaign ramps up over an issue that has confounded administrations of both parties for decades: immigration.

Biden’s briefing from border officials here began just moments after Trump began his remarks in Eagle Pass. Biden thanked border agents and said he would get them more resources “come hell or high water.”

“It’s long past time to act,” he said, adding that border control “desperately” needs more resources.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Dean Obeidallah: Michiganders voting “uncommitted” in the Democratic primary are sending a message Biden needs to hear

Let’s be clear: The focus of the  “Listen to Michigan” campaign where activists are urging Michiganders to vote “uncommitted” in Tuesday’s Democratic presidential primary is neither about defeating President Biden in the primary nor in November. It’s about sending a message to Biden –per the organizers–that “funding and supporting war and occupation against the Palestinian people is untenable and at odds with the values of the Democratic Party.”

In fact, a spokesperson for the Listen to Michigan campaign Abbas Alawieh—who is also a Democratic strategist—addressed that very point to CNN, “If there is a group of people in the entire country or world who most wants Donald Trump to be as far away from the White House as possible, count me among that group.”  Rather as Alawieh explained: “What our movement is saying to [Biden’s] team is that you are losing Michigan by making your policies synonymous with [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s.”

Read the rest of Dean Obeidallah’s piece at and subscribe to his Substack

Mitch McConnell to step down from GOP leadership position in the Senate

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell will step down as GOP leader in November, the Kentucky Republican announced on the Senate floor Wednesday, marking the end of an era on Capitol Hill and setting up a high-stakes race for his successor.

He will continue to serve in the US Senate but will allow “the next generation of leadership” to take the helm of the Senate Republican Conference.

McConnell, who turned 82 last week, said, “the end of my contributions are closer than I prefer.”

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Judge denies Trump request to post $100M bond instead of ‘impossible’ $464M penalty in N.Y. fraud case

dollars money bills
dollars money bills

A New York appeals court judge on Wednesday denied a request by former President Donald Trump’s attorneys to delay enforcement of the recent $464 million judgment against him, his sons and his company.

Trump’s lawyers had asked the judge to instead allow him to post a $100 million bond instead of the statutorily required full amount.

In a brief ruling after an emergency hearing, Justice Anil C. Singh rejected the request to reduce the bond amount but granted other requests the Trumps were asking for, including allowing them to continue to borrow money. Trump’s lawyers had argued the restriction was hampering their efforts to post a bond.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Illinois judge rules Trump ineligible for Republican primary ballot over Jan. 6 riot

Illinois Capitol Springfield
Illinois Capitol Springfield

An Illinois judge ruled Wednesday that former President Donald Trump should be taken off the ballot for the state’s primary election, citing the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Cook County Circuit Court Judge Tracie R. Porter put her order on pause in anticipation of an appeal. The primary is March 19.

Porter’s ruling said that “based on engaging in insurrection on January 6, 2021, … his name should be removed from the ballot.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Supreme Court agrees to consider Trump immunity claim in further delay of election interference trial

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court agreed Wednesday to decide whether former President Donald Trump can claim presidential immunity over criminal election interference charges, adding a new hurdle to a trial taking place.

The court said in a brief order it would hear arguments and issue a ruling on the immunity claim. In the meantime, the case is on hold, meaning no trial can take place.

The order said the court would hear the case, which could take months to resolve, the week of April 22. That timeline allows for a ruling by the end of the court’s regular term in June, which is faster than is typical when the court hears arguments but not as fast as prosecutors wanted it to be.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Fulton County hearing: Wade’s ex-lawyer mum on when Willis relationship started

georgia

After more than two hours, Tuesday’s hearing concluded without providing any revelatory information about the timeline of the romantic relationship between Fulton County prosecutor Nathan Wade and DA Fani Willis, which the defense contends started before Wade was hired, in contrast to what both Wade and Willis have testified.

Judge Scott McAfee said that he plans to hear arguments from the parties on Friday about the case for Willis’ disqualification so he can try to make a ruling.

“At this point, I need to start hearing the arguments and the law and what we’ve heard so far. If I think I’m able to reach a ruling based on that, I will,” McAfee said.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Donald Trump Wins Michigan Republican Primary, with 30% Rejecting Him

Trump Mug Shot
Trump Mug Shot

a surprise to virtually nobody, former President Donald Trump won a decisive victory in the Republican presidential primary in Michigan on Tuesday.

Trump defeated former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, his only remaining viable competitor for the GOP presidential nomination.

Trump did not campaign heavily in Michigan, holding his last event in the state ― a get-out-the-vote rally ― on Feb. 17 in Waterford Township.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Congress nears a partial spending deal, but ticking clock raises fears of a shutdown

Capitol Washington DC
Capitol Washington DC

Congress is running out of time to keep the government open, with senators in both parties warning that they will likely need to pass another short-term funding bill to prevent a partial shutdown this weekend.

“We’ve just had obstacles every step of the way,” said Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., a member of the Appropriations Committee, cautioning that House Republican demands for certain policy changes are “not realistic” and holding up the process.

Shaheen said another stopgap bill is “part of the discussion” as funding legislation still has not been released and House GOP leaders have promised to wait 72 hours before a vote takes place to let members read it, leaving little time. The Senate will then need unanimous consent to pass it speedily — no sure thing.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden wins the Michigan Democratic presidential primary

Vote Election
Vote Election

President Joe Biden easily won Michigan’s Democratic primary Tuesday, NBC News projects, in a contest whose only real drama came from a grassroots effort to cast protest votes over his handling of the war in Gaza.

A Biden victory over his rival, Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., was never in doubt. The only question was the extent to which a loose-knit movement displeased with his failure to rein in the Israeli military would cut into his margin by voting “uncommitted.”

Follow live updates here.

The share of “uncommitted” vote Tuesday stood at 14%, with 33% of expected votes counted. For comparison purposes, when Barack Obama ran for re-election in 2012, the uncommitted vote in Michigan’s Democratic primary was 11%.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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What to watch for in the Michigan presidential primaries

Vote election ballot voter
Vote election ballot voter

The Michigan primary on Tuesday will not only assess President Joe Biden’s strength in a key battleground state, but also serve as a litmus test on the president’s refusal to call for a ceasefire in Gaza.

Biden’s ardent support for Israel – whose ongoing military campaign has killed roughly 30,000 Palestinians, according to Gaza’s Hamas-run Ministry of Health – has enraged a large bloc of American progressives, many of them Jewish, and Arab Americans, most notably in and around the Michigan city of Dearborn, home to one of the largest Arab American communities in the US.

That anger is fueling a statewide movement among Democratic critics of Israel for voters to mark “uncommitted” on their ballots. Though Biden won the state in 2020 by about 150,000 votes, the victory margin was much narrower in 2016, when Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton by nearly 11,000. The group leading the protest campaign has said it hopes to garner at least that many “uncommitted” votes on Tuesday. The goal: Send a message to the Biden campaign about the domestic political costs of his stance on a conflict increasingly referred to by critics as a genocide.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Supreme Court Seems Wary of State Laws Regulating Social Media Platforms

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court seemed skeptical on Monday of laws in Florida and Texas that bar major social media companies from making editorial judgments about which messages to allow.

The laws were enacted in an effort to shield conservative voices on the sites, but a decision by the court, expected by June, will almost certainly be its most important statement on the scope of the First Amendment in the internet era, with broad political and economic implications.

A ruling that tech platforms have no editorial discretion to decide which posts to allow would expose users to a greater variety of viewpoints but almost certainly amplify the ugliest aspects of the digital age, including hate speech and disinformation.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Here we go again: Congress faces looming government shutdown deadline Friday

US Capitol Washington DC
US Capitol Washington DC

Congress started to return to Washington on Monday facing a familiar predicament: its back against the wall as the clock ticks down to renew funding for several key government agencies before a Friday deadline.

Absent action from both chambers, Congress is staring down a partial government shutdown at the end of the day Friday — its fourth time in as many months.

Funding for several key agencies will run out on Friday night, including the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Transportation Department and the Veterans Administration. One week later, on March 8, funding for the remaining eight government agencies will expire if Congress fails to act.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Biden says he hopes to see a cease-fire by next week in the Israel-Hamas war

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

President Joe Biden said Monday that he hopes there will be a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war by next week.

“My hope is by next Monday we will have a cease-fire,” Biden said in response to a reporter’s question while he was in New York City.

“My national security adviser tells me that we’re close, close but not done yet,” he said.

The White House has been working on cease-fire negotiations amid growing pressure from progressives and Palestinian allies.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News 

Charlie Pierce: Republicans Are Scrambling Like, Well, Eggs Over This IVF Decision

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

Chief Justice Tom Parker of the Alabama Soo-preme Court has placed a lot of important Republican asses on a very hot griddle. For decades, they placated the fanatic fetus-fondlers in their political base with half-measures and platitudes. Then the U.S. Supremes dropped the Dobbs decision into their laps and, suddenly, there was no place for them to hide any more. And now, while they’re still wrongfooted from that development, here comes Chief Justice Tom ruling that all the little IVF embryos are babies beloved by God, to whose private cellphone number Chief Justice Tom has the number. He and the Almighty got together and decided that all IVF procedures are against the law in Alabama. IVF is a very popular thing. And Republicans are scrambling like…well…eggs over this new issue that they should’ve seen coming, but clearly didn’t.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Admits She’s ‘Not Sure’ How Biden Will Fare Against Potential Protest Vote in Tuesday’s Michigan Primary

Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer admitted during an interview on Sunday that she is “not sure” how President Joe Biden will perform against a possible protest vote in her state’s primary on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Democrats are hosting a primary election in Michigan where Biden may face a potential protest vote from progressive activists opposing his administration’s policy regarding Israel and the conflict in the Gaza region. Michigan is a key swing state in the general election and former President Donald Trump currently leads the Democratic frontrunner by nearly five points, according to Real Clear Politics.

Read the rest of the story at Mediaite

Biden is summoning congressional leaders to the White House to talk Ukraine and government funding

The White House Washington DC
The White House Washington DC

President Joe Biden will convene the top four congressional leaders at the White House on Tuesday to press lawmakers on passing an emergency aid package for Ukraine and Israel, as well as averting a looming government shutdownnext month, according to a White House official.

The top four leaders include House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

During the meeting, the president will discuss the “urgency” of passing the aid package, which has bipartisan support, as well as legislation to keep the federal government operating through the end of September, said the White House official, who was granted anonymity to discuss a meeting not yet publicly confirmed.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Jake Sullivan: ‘Of course there are concerns’ about Russian election interference in 2024

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan acknowledged Sunday that “of course there are concerns” about possible Russian interference in the 2024 presidential election.

“This is not about politics,” Sullivan told NBC News’ “Meet the Press.” “This is about national security. It is about a foreign country, a foreign adversary, seeking to manipulate the politics and democracy of the United States of America.”

He also said the Biden administration is going to be “vigilant” about preventing interference in elections, and that it will “engage the Congress on a bipartisan basis, because this should be above and beyond politics.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Koch network says it will stop funding Nikki Haley’s presidential bid after her South Carolina loss on Saturday

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

The political network financed largely by billionaire Charles Koch announced Sunday that it will no longer spend funds to support Nikki Haley’s presidential bid.

Former President Donald Trump on Saturday swept to victory over Haley in South Carolina, her home state, where she once served as governor.

In an email obtained by NBC News, which was confirmed by two sources who received it, the network’s advocacy arm said that following Haley’s loss in South Carolina, the group no longer believes it can make a meaningful difference for her in the race, senior adviser Emily Seidel said. Instead, Americans for Prosperity Action will focus its resources down the ballot on House and Senate races.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

The Rude Pundit: Get Your Filthy Faith Out of Our Secular Legal System

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

One of the hopes and dreams for Jesus-fellating right-wingers and fascists who know how to manipulate the Jesus fellaters is that the 2024 election will hasten the establishment of a Christian nationalist government for this damned country. That means, among other scary shit, laws come directly from an invisible sky wizard or, you know, “God,” and the book of fiction that is the Christian bible. (Just to be fair and clear, all books of fables about sky wizards and their earth-bound superfriends and relatives are fictional, no matter which flavor they happen to be.) And it means that you will need to follow what they claim their sky wizard tells them, whether you believe in that sky wizard or not.

In the past week. two judges, one on the Alabama Supreme Court and one on the U.S. Supreme Court, issued opinions that they didn’t have to issue just to put forth the idea that the law needs to take into account what “God” thinks about shit. Seriously, the decisions in the cases, which they agree with, were completed and then they went and added their own bullshit side opinions just so they could flog for crazed right-wing Christianity.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

JoJo From Jerz: Joe Biden doesn’t have to be your dream date

JoJo From Jerz
JoJo From Jerz

Look, I like Joe Biden a lot, confessedly, I like him more than a lot of people who like him like him. And even I don’t think he’s perfect.

I don’t drift off to sleep imagining some scene out of Anne of Green Gables, where a fresh-faced Joe dressed in a Seersucker suit meets me at our favorite bridge and we finally, after years and years of “plutonic” friendship, confess our undying love for one another (that’s long since been Ewan McGregor’s lane, sorry Joe).

I’ve never daydreamed about a shirtless Joe kicking in my door in a fire and rescuing me from my bed while I’m seemingly surrounded by flames and out of options (ok, I may be revealing a tad too much about my fantasies, but I digress…)

Read the rest of JoJo’s piece at and subscribe to her Substack

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Biden calls Alabama IVF ruling “outrageous and unacceptable”

President Joe Biden Flags Speech
President Joe Biden Flags Speech

President Biden on Thursday called the Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos are considered children under the law “outrageous and unacceptable.” 

“Make no mistake: this is a direct result of the overturning of Roe v. Wade,” Mr. Biden said in a statement, vowing to keep fighting for women’s reproductive rights “until we restore the protections of Roe v. Wade in federal law for all women in every state.” 

The University of Alabama at Birmingham, the state’s largest hospital, said Wednesday it was pausing in vitro fertilization, or IVF, treatments as it evaluates the implications of the court’s decision. 

Read the rest of the story at CBS News

Private Lunar Lander Makes First U.S. Touchdown On The Moon In 50 Years

Moon Sky
Moon Sky

A private lander on Thursday made the first U.S. touchdown on the moon in more than 50 years, but managed just a weak signal back until flight controllers scrambled to gain better contact.

Despite the spotty communication, Intuitive Machines, the company that built and managed the craft, confirmed that it had landed upright. But it did not provide additional details, including whether the lander had reached its intended destination near the moon’s south pole. The company ended its live webcast soon after identifying a lone, weak signal from the lander.

“What we can confirm, without a doubt, is our equipment is on the surface of the moon,” mission director Tim Crain reported as tension built in the company’s Houston control center.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump moves to dismiss his classified documents indictment, citing presidential immunity

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

Former President Donald Trump on Thursday urged a federal judge to dismiss his classified documents case in Florida on the basis of presidential immunity, according to a court filing.

“President Trump’s alleged decision to designate records as personal under the PRA and cause them to be removed from the White House—which underlies Counts 1 through 32 of the Superseding Indictment—was an official act by the incumbent president,” the former president’s attorneys wrote in court papers filed in federal court in West Palm Beach, Florida.

“President Trump is entitled to immunity for this official act and that must include immunity from criminal prosecution,” they added.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Malcolm Nance: Two Weeks of Geopolitical Madness… Is the World About to Explode?

Malcolm Nance
Malcolm Nance

Well, the thing I’ve learned in the new year of 2024 is that one should not travel internationally and one should certainly not get sick. That’s because there’s so much mayhem and chaos in the world today that taking your eye off of one subject for just a split second will allow you to miss five or six others.

We are living in a time of insanely super-fast information sharing mainly through social media.

It is obvious to the world just how and why everything seems to be going absolutely bat-shit crazy.

Read the rest of Malcolm Nance’s piece at and subscribe to his Substack

Biden calls Putin a ‘crazy SOB’; the Kremlin says his comments debased America

President Joe Biden Flags Speech
President Joe Biden Flags Speech

Vladimir Putin is a “crazy SOB,” President Joe Biden said Wednesday — a direct stab at the Russian leader that drew a furious reaction from the Kremlin.

In comments at a fundraiser in San Francisco, Biden also took aim at former President Donald Trump, ridiculing his likely opponent in the November presidential election for comparing himself to Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who died last week.

Discussing climate change, Biden also made a brief diversion to note that the world should be worried about Putin’s repeated nuclear threats against the West.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Bidens’ dog, Commander, bit Secret Service personnel in at least 24 incidents, records show

White House
White House

Commander Biden, President Joe Biden’s family dog, bit US Secret Service personnel in at least 24 incidents at the White House and other locations, according to new internal USSS documents obtained by CNN.

That number does not include additional incidents CNN has previously reported involving executive residence staff and other White House workers. But the new documents, obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, reveal the extent to which the situation had become a serious workplace issue for the hundreds of staff supporting White House operations, and how agency personnel changed their habits to avoid being injured by the German shepherd.

“The recent dog bites have challenged us to adjust our operational tactics when Commander is present – please give lots of room,” an unnamed assistant special agent in charge of USSS’ Presidential Protective Division wrote to their team in a June 2023 email, warning that agents “must be creative to ensure our own personal safety.”

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Nikki Haley On Alabama’s IVF Ruling: ‘Embryos, To Me, Are Babies’

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Republican presidential primary candidate Nikki Haley (R) is siding with the Alabama Supreme Court’s controversial ruling last week that legally equated embryos with children.

“Embryos, to me, are babies,” the former South Carolina governor said in an interview with NBC News’ Ali Vitali published Wednesday. “When you talk about an embryo, you are talking about, to me, that’s a life. And so I do see where that’s coming from when they talk about that.”

When Vitali asked Haley for her thoughts on the “chilling effect” the decision could have on access to fertility treatments, Haley said it was necessary to “look at the details” in the Alabama ruling and to “continue to have conversations” with women and doctors because it’s a “sensitive” topic. She said she hadn’t seen specifics from Alabama.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

White House Weighing Executive Actions On The Border — With Immigration Powers Used By Trump

The White House is considering using provisions of federal immigration law repeatedly tapped by former President Donald Trump to unilaterally enact a sweeping crackdown at the southern border, according to three people familiar with the deliberations.

The administration, stymied by Republican lawmakers who rejected a negotiated border billearlier this month, has been exploring options that President Joe Biden could deploy on his own without congressional approval, multiple officials and others familiar with the talks said. But the plans are nowhere near finalized and it’s unclear how the administration would draft any such executive actions in a way that would survive the inevitable legal challenges. The officials and those familiar with the talks spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to comment on private ongoing White House discussions.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

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Tara Dublin: MSM… “Donald Trump is an adjudicated rapist. Here’s why that’s bad for Joe Biden”

Tara Dublin
Tara Dublin

OMFG JOE BIDEN IS FOUR YEARS OLDER THAN DONALD TRUMP, which is apparently a bajillion times worse than being arrested FOUR TIMES last year, having a prisoner number, and being an adjudicated rapist fraud with a court calendar longer than one of his dumb fucking red ties.

Maureen Dowd, a spry young 72, wrote a whole bunch of bullshit in the New York Times about how “many Americans are quite concerned about the 81-year-old president’s crepuscular mien,” and how his age is “the elephant in the room — except that elephants never forget.”

Read the rest of Tara Dublin’s piece at and subscribe to her Substack

‘I Refuse To Quit’: Nikki Haley Vows To Stay In GOP Race Against Donald Trump

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley, the last candidate standing between Donald Trump and the GOP nomination, doubled down on her commitment to stay in the presidential race beyond the primary in her home state this weekend, amid the latest round of negative polling for her campaign and a scathing new memo from Trump’s advisers.

“Some of you, perhaps a few of you in the media, came here today to see if I’m dropping out of the race. Well, I’m not… I refuse to quit,” Haley said in Greensboro, South Carolina, squashing speculation that she called a last-minute press conference to announce the end of her campaign.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Ex-FBI Informant Charged With Lying About Bidens Had Russian Intelligence Contacts, Prosecutors Say

Hunter Biden
Hunter Biden

A former FBI informant charged with making up a multimillion-dollar bribery scheme involving President Joe Biden, his son Hunter and a Ukrainian energy company had contacts with Russian intelligence-affiliated officials, prosecutors said in a court paper Tuesday.

Prosecutors revealed the alleged contact as they urged a judge to keep Alexander Smirnov behind bars while he awaits trial. He’s accused of falsely telling his handler that executives with the Ukrainian energy company Burisma paid Hunter and Joe Biden $5 million each around 2015. The claim became central to the Republican impeachment inquiry in Congress.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

U.S. Vetoes U.N. Resolution Demanding Immediate Gaza Cease-Fire

UN United Nations Flag
UN United Nations Flag

The United States on Tuesday vetoed an Arab-backed and widely supported U.N. resolution demanding an immediate humanitarian cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war in the embattled Gaza Strip, saying it would interfere with negotiations on a deal to free hostages abducted in Israel.

The vote in the 15-member Security Council was 13-1 with the United Kingdom abstaining, reflecting the strong support from countries around the globe for ending the war, which started when Hamas militants invaded southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking 250 others hostage. Since then, more than 29,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s military offensive, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, which says the vast majority were women and children.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump Compares Himself To The Late Putin Critic Alexei Navalny

Trump Dumb
Trump Dumb

Former President Donald Trump is back with another outlandish claim.

Following a New York judge’s ruling in Trump’s fraud trial, which, in part, requires him to pay $355 million in fines, the former president effectively compared himself to Alexei Navalny, the late critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, during a town hall with Fox News host Laura Ingraham.

Trump, who has previously praised Putin, argued that he is a victim of political persecution through his remarks on Navalny. Trump is currently in the middle of several notable legal troubles — two of which involve his efforts to overturn his loss in the 2020 election.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

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Trump compares Russian opposition leader Navalny’s death to his own legal woes

Donald Trump Scared
Donald Trump Scared

Former President Donald Trump on Monday compared the sudden death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny in a prison colonyto the legal peril he faces in the U.S., elevating a talking point in some right-wing circles linking the two in his first comments on Navalny’s death.

“The sudden death of Alexei Navalny has made me more and more aware of what is happening in our Country,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform. “It is a slow, steady progression, with CROOKED, Radical Left Politicians, Prosecutors, and Judges leading us down a path to destruction. Open Borders, Rigged Elections, and Grossly Unfair Courtroom Decisions are DESTROYING AMERICA. WE ARE A NATION IN DECLINE, A FAILING NATION! MAGA2024.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden campaign and allied Democratic groups raised $42 million in January

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

President Joe Biden raised a combined $42 million in January for committees supporting his re-election effort, fueled by seven-figure hauls from small-dollar donors in the days following Donald Trump’s victory in the leadoff Iowa GOP caucuses.

The Biden campaign, the Democratic National Committee and other affiliated fundraising committees had $130 million in the bank at the end of the month, according to the Biden campaign, which says January was its best grassroots fundraising month since the start of the campaign.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Wisconsin’s Democratic Gov. Signs His Legislative Maps Into Law, Ending GOP Gerrymander

Wisconsin
Wisconsin

Wisconsin Democratic Gov. Tony Evers signed new legislative district maps into law on Monday that he proposed and that the Republicans who control the Legislature passed to avoid having the liberal-controlled state Supreme Court draw the lines.

Democrats hailed the signing as a major political victory in the swing state where the Legislature has been firmly under Republican control for more than a decade, even as Democrats have won 14 of the past 17 statewide elections.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Elie Mystal: Merrick Garland Must Go

As we wait to see if the Supreme Court will grant Donald Trump another delay in his criminal trial for obstruction of Congress, it is important to remember that Trump may succeed in pushing off proceedings until he can be reelected because of the slow-moving failure of a prosecutor who is otherwise known as Merrick Garland. As we digest the likely Supreme Court ruling that Trump is eligible to stay on the ballot in Colorado and other states—despite the 14th Amendment’s prohibition against insurrectionists holding office—it’s important to remember that Garland never charged Trump with “sedition” or “treason” or any offense that would have made the court’s protection of Trump a little harder to square with the Constitution.

Read the rest of Elie Mystal’s piece at The Nation

Charlie Pierce: Greg Abbott Thinks Texas Should Have Its Own Foreign Policy

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

Over the past month, Greg Abbott, the inexcusable governor of Texas, has adopted his own Articles of Confederation, defying the federal government while pursuing a ruthless campaign against migrants on the southern border. The enabling legislation for said campaign is Texas Senate Bill 4, due to activate on March 4. SB4 is as direct an assault on the Supremacy Clause as this country has seen since an earlier Texas legislature ran Governor Sam Houston out of office on the brink of the Civil War. It set up a state deportation scheme despite the fact that immigration is now, and ever has been, a federal matter. Abbott essentially decided that Texas should have its own foreign policy.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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Donald Trump faces another judgment day, this time in his $370 million civil fraud case

Donald Trump faces a possible nine-figure calamity Friday when a judge is expected to release his decision in the former president’s contentious New York civil fraud trial.

New York Attorney General Letitia James is seeking $370 million in penalties after Judge Arthur Engoron ruled last year that Trump had over-inflated the value of his real estate holdings – including the size of his own Trump Tower penthouse apartment – in order to get favorable bank loan terms.

Trump has without evidence attacked the proceedings as a politically motivated hit job orchestrated by a Democratic attorney general and judge, whom he has repeatedly lashed in public and on social media.

Read the rest of the story at USA Today

White House Clashed With Justice Dept. Over Special Counsel Report

White House
White House

The White House clashed with the Justice Department in the run-up to the release of a special counsel report last week about President Biden’s handling of classified information, previously undisclosed correspondence shows.

The letters, obtained by The New York Times, show that a top Justice Department official rejected complaints from Mr. Biden’s lawyers about disparaging comments in the report regarding the president.

The lawyers wrote to Attorney General Merrick B. Garland the day before he released the report by the special counsel, Robert K. Hur. They raised objections to passages in the report in which Mr. Hur suggested that Mr. Biden’s memory was failing and questioned some of his actions, even though the special counsel had found no basis to prosecute the president.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

FBI source charged for allegedly providing false info on Bidens, which was cited by Republicans

Hunter Biden
Hunter Biden

Special counsel David Weiss has indicted an FBI confidential source who provided derogatory information about President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden on felony false statement and obstruction charges.

Weiss indicted Alexander Smirnov, 43, on one count of making a false statement and one count of creating a false and fictitious record related to statements he made to the FBI on a document known as an FBI Form 1023.

Charging documents released on Thursday show Smirnov was a confidential source for the FBI and allegedly provided “false derogatory information about [President Biden] and [Hunter Biden] … in 2020, after [Biden] became a presidential candidate.”

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

A defiant Fani Willis rebukes misconduct allegations in Trump election case

Fani Willis Fulton County DA
Fani Willis Fulton County DA

In a surprise turn, a defiant Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis took the stand Thursday in her misconduct hearing after a former friend disputed the timeline of her relationship with special prosecutor Nathan Wade.

The friend had described “hugging, kissing, just affection” as early as November 2021 between Willis and Wade, the lead prosecutor in the Georgia election interference case, appearing to contradict claims by the two made in an earlier affidavit.

Robin Yeartie, who first met Willis in college and worked in the district attorney’s office until 2022, testified as Willis and Wade face misconduct allegations that could lead to Willis’ disqualificationfrom the case against former President Donald Trump. In her testimony, Willis sought to distance herself from Yeartie by saying that they had known each other for decades but that “she betrayed our friendship.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Special counsel Jack Smith urges Supreme Court to reject Trump bid to delay election trial

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

Special counsel Jack Smith asked the Supreme Court on Wednesday to reject an emergency application filed by Donald Trump that sought to further delay the former president’s criminal trial arising from efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

Smith filed his response to Trump’s request six days ahead of the deadline imposed by the court. The former president wants more time to litigate his claim that the federal indictment should be dismissed on the grounds of presidential immunity.

Trump’s bid to put on hold an appeals court ruling that rejected his immunity claim fails to meet the necessary requirements for the Supreme Court to intervene, Smith said in his filing.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Rep. Jim Clyburn to step down from House Democratic leadership post

Rep James Clyburn
Rep James Clyburn

Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., announced Wednesday that he’s stepping down from his Democratic leadership position in the House, while a protégé signaled a desire to succeed him.

“I have informed Leader Hakeem Jeffries of my intention to step down as Assistant Democratic Leader of the House Democratic Caucus,” Clyburn, 83, said in a statement

“I am confident that Leader Jeffries, Whip Katherine Clark, Caucus Chair Pete Aguilar, and the entire leadership team will continue the important work of putting people over politics,” the statement added.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Russia’s pursuit of a space-based nuclear weapon raises national security concerns in Washington

Russia is developing a space-based nuclear weapondesigned to target U.S. satellites, according to three sources familiar with the matter.

The weapon isn’t yet operational, the sources told NBC News, but Moscow’s pursuit of an advanced weapon that could jeopardize America’s vital satellite network has raised concern among U.S. officials, and it prompted the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Mike Turner, to issue an extraordinary statementearlier Wednesday calling on the White House to declassify information about an unnamed “serious national security threat.”

Turner, R-Ohio, didn’t provide additional details in his statement. The three sources said he was referring to the Russian effort to field a nuclear weapon in space that could take out satellites that serve as a crucial backbone for U.S. civilian communications, navigation, military operations and intelligence gathering.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

At least 1 killed in shooting at Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl celebration

Kansas City Chiefs Parade Shooting
Kansas City Chiefs Parade Shooting

At least one person was killed and as many as 21 other people were injured with gunshot wounds in a shooting in Kansas City, Missouri, after a rally Wednesday celebrating the Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory, authorities said.

Eight of the injured had “immediately life-threatening” injuries, seven had life-threatening injuries and six had minor injuries after the shooting about 2 p.m. CT, Kansas City Fire Chief Ross Grundyson said.

Three people were detained, though police did not identify suspects.

The person shot dead was named as Lisa Lopez-Galvan by her family. Kansas City, Missouri, radio station KKFI 90.1 said Lopez- Galvan was one of its DJs.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Verdict expected Friday in Trump’s $370 million civil fraud trial

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

State Judge Arthur Engoron, who presided over the $370 million civil fraud case in New York against former President Donald Trump and his company, is expected to issue his verdict in the trial by the end of the week, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told NBC News.

“It is currently anticipated the Engoron decision will be released on Friday, barring unforeseen circumstances,” the person said Tuesday.

The new target date was previously reported by The New York Times.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden calls Trump’s NATO remarks ‘un-American’

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

President Joe Biden rebuked former President Donald Trump on Tuesday for recently saying that he would encourage Russia to attack NATO nations that he thought had insufficiently spent on defense as part of the mutual protection agreement.

“The former president has sent a dangerous, and shockingly, frankly, un-American signal to the world. Just a few days ago, Trump gave an invitation to Putin to invade some of our NATO allies,” Biden said in remarks from the White House.

Biden continued: “He said if an ally didn’t spend enough money on defense, he would encourage Russia to, ‘Do whatever the hell it wants.’ Can you imagine? A former president of the United States saying that. The whole world heard it, and the worst thing is he means it. No other president in history has ever bowed down to a Russian dictator. Let me say this as clearly as I can: I never will. For God’s sake, it’s shameful, it’s dangerous, it’s un-American.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Democrat Tom Suozzi wins N.Y. special election to replace George Santos

Vote Election Ballot
Vote Election Ballot

Democratic former Rep. Tom Suozzi is heading back to Congress after he won the special election in New York’s 3rd District to replace former GOP Rep. George Santos, NBC News projects.

Suozzi’s victory Tuesday over Republican Mazi Pilip cuts Republicans’ already razor-thin House majority by one seat, making legislating even more difficult moving forward. And it could provide a guide for Democrats competing in similar competitive districts this fall, especially when it comes to navigating their political vulnerability on immigration and border security.

The Democrat may seek to be sworn into Congress as early as Thursday, according to a source with knowledge of his thinking. If not, he may have to wait until the end of the month after the House takes an extended recess for President’s Day.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Republicans impeach Alejandro Mayorkas over the border after failing to last week

Washington Dc Capitol
Washington Dc Capitol

House Republicans on Tuesday night muscled through a vote to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas over his handling of the border, exactly one week after their first attempt to impeach him collapsed spectacularly on the floor.

The vote was 214-213, with three Republicans again opposing the impeachment. Mayorkas is just the second Cabinet secretary in U.S. history to be impeached — and the first in nearly 150 years.

“From his first day in office, Secretary Mayorkas has willfully and consistently refused to comply with federal immigration laws, fueling the worst border catastrophe in American history,” Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., said in a statement. “He has undermined public trust through multiple false statements to Congress, obstructed lawful oversight of the Department of Homeland Security, and violated his oath of office.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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House Speaker Mike Johnson Throws Cold Water On Senate Foreign Aid Bill

Capitol Washington Snow Night DC
Capitol Washington Snow Night DC

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) suggested Monday that the House would not vote on a foreign aid bill working its way through the Senate this week.

Johnson complained in a statement from his office that the Senate legislation, which would provide billions of dollars in aid for Israel and Ukraine, did not have any provisions aimed at reducing migration into the U.S. from the southern border.

“Now, in the absence of having received any single border policy change from the Senate, the House will have to continue to work its own will on these important matters,” Johnson said.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump endorses Michael Whatley to lead RNC, with Lara Trump as co-chair

republican elephant GOP
republican elephant GOP

Former President Donald Trump on Monday endorsed Michael Whatley to be the next head of the Republican National Committee and backed his daughter-in-law Lara Trump for co-chair.

Trump had indicated that it was time for RNC chair Ronna McDaniel to step aside, but he has also said he would make recommendations about changes at the RNC after the South Carolina primary, on Feb. 24.

“I think my friend Michael Whatley should be the RNC’s next leader,” Trump said in a statement, adding that he “has been with me from the beginning, has done a great job in his home state of North Carolina.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Judge in Trump election case says it’s ‘possible’ D.A. Fani Willis could be disqualified over misconduct allegations

georgia

The Georgia judge presiding over the election interference case against former President Donald Trump gave the green light Monday for a hearing this week involving misconduct allegations against Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis and said her disqualification from the case is “possible.”

Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee made the remarks at a hearing where he denied Willis’ bid to toss out a subpoena for her testimonyat the hearing Thursday, at least for now.

“Disqualification can occur if evidence is produced demonstrating an actual conflict or the appearance of one,” he said. One of Trump’s co-defendants in the election case, Michael Roman, alleged that Willis and prosecutor Nathan Wade had “a personal relationship” that was “improper.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News 

Trump seeks Supreme Court intervention in election subversion case

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

Former President Donald Trump on Monday filed a last-ditch request at the Supreme Court seeking to prevent his prosecution for attempting to overturn the 2020 election from moving closer to trial.

Trump asked the justices to put on hold an appeals court ruling that rejected his broad claim of presidential immunity in relation to events leading up to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

The court should block the ruling to “forestall, once again, an unprecedented and unacceptable departure from ordinary appellate procedures and allow President Trump’s claim of immunity to be decided in the ordinary course of justice,” Trump’s lawyers wrote in the filing.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Charlie Pierce: Despite What You’ve Read In the New York Times, Trump Actually Looks Terrible

By now, I hope all shebeen regulars have taken note of the single worst passage to appear in the New York Times since the days when Walter Duranty was writing about how high-on-the-hog Ukrainians were living under the enlightened rule of Joseph Stalin. If you somehow missed it, or if you never finished it because projectile vomiting overcame you before you could, here it is. Gaze in awe:

Mr. Biden’s voice has grown softer and raspier, his hair thinner and whiter. He is tall and trim but moves more tentatively than he did as a candidate in 2019 and 2020, often holding his upper body stiff, adding to an impression of frailty. And he has had spills in the public eye: falling off a bicycle, tripping over a sandbag.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

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The Rude Pundit: Completely Batsh** Things from a Trump Speech That Won’t Get as Much Coverage as Biden’s Age

Rude Pundit
Rude Pundit

This week, everyone in the media apparently decided that Joe Biden is too old to be president again. One report from a Trump-appointed former US Attorney that has a few lines simping for MAGA cred by dissing Biden’s memory for shit that happened years ago, and it’s like we have to act like Biden’s crumbling into dust before our eyes like a long-buried mummy who was touched before being preserved.  It’s frankly fucked to watch the New York Times and CNN and other outlets climb over each other to try to out-dick one another on Biden’s age. 

No shit he’s old. We fucking know that. No shit that he’s flubbed some names and dates. Biden’s been doing that for decades. He’s even joked about it before. And he’s gonna continue to do it just like I’m going to sometimes call my dog by the name of the dog I had 20 years ago. Prove to me that his age has diminished his presidency. Fucking prove that to me and you’ll have an argument to make saying that he should step away.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

Donald Trump: Taylor Swift Is ‘Disloyal’ If She Endorses President Biden

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift

Mr. Trump, feeling a little delicate?

Former president Donald Trump took to Truth Social on Super Bowl Sunday to complain about pop star Taylor Swift and rumors she may endorse President Joe Biden this election cycle.

Always happy to take credit for others’ success, the real estate mogul-turned-reality star claimed Swift should be grateful to him for making her “so much money,” saying that she would be “disloyal” if she supported the Democratic candidate for president, as she has in years past.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin hospitalized for a bladder issue; duties transferred to deputy defense secretary

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was admitted to a critical care unit Sunday evening after being hospitalized earlier for a bladder issue, top doctors at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center said.

The change in care was prompted after he underwent tests and evaluations for the “emergent bladder issue” that prompted his hospitalization Sunday afternoon, they said in a statement.

He transferred his duties to Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks at about 4:55 p.m. Sunday, and the White House, Joint Chiefs and Congress have been notified, Pentagon Press Sec Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Trump says he’d let Russia do ‘whatever the hell they want’ to NATO countries that don’t pay enough

Trump In Texas
Trump In Texas

Former President Donald Trump said Saturday he would encourage Russia to “do whatever the hell they want” if it attacked a NATO country that didnt pay enough for defense.

His comments drew fierce backlash from some Republicans, the White House and leading Western officials, with the head of the trans-Atlantic alliance suggesting they could put the lives of American and European soldiers at greater risk.

The comments will do little to ease concerns in Europe about U.S. dependability, with military aid that Ukraine desperately needs held up in Congress and the front-runner for the GOP nomination now reiterating his long-standing skepticism of America’s historical commitments to its allies.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Kansas City Chiefs win thrilling Super Bowl in overtime, beating 49ers 25-22

The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers, capping off a thriller in Las Vegas that saw several lead changes in the second half before ending in just the second Super Bowl to go to overtime.

The Chiefs will bring home the Vince Lombardi Trophy for the second year in a row and the third time in five years after quarterback Patrick Mahomes rallied his team which had been dominated by San Francisco in the first half.

“What a game, right? It could have gone either way,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid told reporters. “I feel fortunate to have been on the positive side.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Defiant Biden Slams Special Counsel For Suggesting He Forgot When Son Died

Biden Speaking
Biden Speaking

In surprise remarks delivered from the White House on Thursday evening, President Joe Biden scolded special counsel Robert Hur for suggesting in his report on the handling of classified documents that the president had forgotten when his son Beau died.

“There’s even reference that I don’t remember when my son died. How in the hell dare he raise that?” Biden said of the report released hours earlier.

“I don’t need anyone to remind me of when he passed away,” he said.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Supreme Court signals unlikely to let Colorado kick Trump off ballot

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court on Thursday signaled deep skepticism that Colorado had the power to remove former President Donald Trump from the Republican primary ballot because of his actions trying to overturn the 2020 election results.

A majority of the justices appeared to think during the two-hour argument that states do not have a role in deciding whether a presidential candidate can be barred from running under a provision of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment that bars people who “engaged in insurrection” from holding office.

Justices from across the ideological spectrum raised concerns about states reaching different conclusions on whether a candidate could run, and several indicated that only Congress could enforce the provision at issue.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Trump wins the Nevada Republican caucuses, continuing his march to the nomination

Former President Donald Trump easily won the Nevada caucuses on Thursday, NBC News projects, the fourth contest he has captured on his march to the GOP nomination.

It was a glide path for Trump, who faced no major competition in the caucuses after most of his opponents dropped out of the race and the last one standing, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, chose to compete in Nevada’s state-sponsored primary Tuesday. In an embarrassing defeat, Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, lost decisively to “none of these candidates,” by at least 30 points, according to the most recent vote tally.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden won’t be charged in classified docs case; special counsel cites instances of ‘poor memory’

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

Special counsel Robert Hur has declined to prosecute President Joe Biden for his handling of classified documents but said in a report released Thursday that Biden’s practices “present serious risks to national security” and added that part of the reason he wouldn’t charge Biden was that the president could portray himself as an “elderly man with a poor memory” who would be sympathetic to a jury.

“Our investigation uncovered evidence that President Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen,” the report said, but added that the evidence “does not establish Mr. Biden’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Marianne Williamson ends long-shot presidential bid as Democratic challenger

Marianne Williamson
Marianne Williamson

Marianne Williamson ended her 2024 bid for the Democratic presidential nomination Wednesday after poor showings in the New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries.

“I read a quote the other day that said that sunsets are proof that endings can be beautiful, too,” Williamson said in a video on YouTube. “And so today, even though it is time to suspend my campaign for the presidency, I do want to see the beauty, and I want all of you who so incredibly supported me on this journey — as donors, as supporters, as team and as volunteers — to see the beauty, too.”

Williamson launched her long-shot White House bid in March 2023, well before even President Joe Biden had publicly declared that he planned to run for re-election. 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

The Biden administration is considering executive action to deter illegal migration at the southern border

The Biden administration is considering taking executive action to deter illegal migration across the southern border, according to two U.S. officials.

As passing legislation on border security in Congress appears unlikely, the plans under consideration signal that the White House wants to take action before numbers at the border, which have dropped in the past month, rise again as expected.

The plans have been under consideration for months, the officials said. In December, as Congress prepared to leave town for the holidays with no border solution, illegal crossings of the southwest border hit records at more than 10,000 per day.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Senate Republicans sink border bill as Schumer eyes a separate Israel and Ukraine aid vote

Capitol Washington DC Sunset
Capitol Washington DC

Senate Republicans blocked a bipartisan border security and foreign aid bill Wednesday, leaving the path for additional U.S. aid for allies Ukraine and Israel unclear.

The Senate voted 49-50 to shoot down the border bill Wednesday afternoon with Republicans voting en masse to filibuster the agreement they had demanded, arguing that it wouldn’t do enough to crack down on an overwhelmed border.

After the failed vote on the $118 billion package, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said he would bring up an Israel and Ukraine aid package stripped of border security provisions. But the Senate broke for the night just after 7 p.m. ET unable to secure the 60 votes needed to move ahead with it.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Will Trump stay on the ballot? What to expect at the Supreme Court today.

Supreme Court SCOTUS
Supreme Court SCOTUS

The Supreme Court on Thursday will confront the critical question of Donald Trump’s eligibility to return to the White House, hearing arguments in an unprecedented case that gives the justices a central role in charting the course of a presidential election for the first time in nearly a quarter-century.

The justices will decide whether Colorado’s top court was correct to apply a post-Civil War provision of the Constitution to order Trump off the ballot after concluding his actions around the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol amounted to insurrection. Primary voting is already underway in some states. Colorado’s ballots for the March 5 primary were printed last week and include Trump’s name. But his status as a candidate will depend on what the Supreme Court decides.

Read the rest of the story at The Washington Post 

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Federal Appeals Court Rejects Trump’s Claim of Absolute Immunity

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

A federal appeals court on Tuesday rejected former President Donald J. Trump’s claim that he was immune from prosecution on charges of plotting to subvert the results of the 2020 election, ruling that he must go to trial on a criminal indictment accusing him of seeking to overturn his loss to President Biden.

The unanimous ruling, by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, handed Mr. Trump a significant defeat. But it was unlikely to be the final word on his claims of executive immunity: Mr. Trump, who is on a path to locking up the Republican presidential nomination, is expected to continue his appeal to the Supreme Court.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Ronna McDaniel, R.N.C. Chairwoman, Plans to Step Down

Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP
Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP

The chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, Ronna McDaniel, has told former President Donald J. Trump she is planning to step down shortly after the South Carolina primary on Feb. 24, according to two people familiar with the plans.

Mr. Trump is then likely to promote the chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, Michael Whatley, as her replacement, according to several people familiar with the discussions. Under the arcana of the committee’s rules, however, Mr. Trump cannot simply install someone. A new election must take place, and Mr. Whatley could face internal party dissent.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Nikki Haley loses to ‘none of these candidates’ in the Nevada GOP primary

Nikki Haley
Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley faced no major challenger Tuesday in Nevada’s presidential primary. 

She still lost, according to NBC News projections. 

Nevada voters in the state-run primary had a choice to reject all the candidates on the ballot, and they did just that — with more people choosing to vote for “none of these candidates” than for Haley.

It was a stinging rebuke of Haley, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and South Carolina governor — and one that some party leaders had encouraged. The outcome in Nevada was Haley’s third consecutive loss in an early-state primary contest.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

House Republicans fail to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas

A monthslong GOP campaign to oust Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas collapsed in the House on Tuesday after Democrats and a trio of skeptical Republicans voted to reject a resolution to impeach him over his handling of the southern border.

The vote was 214-216, making a stunning blow for Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., and House Republicans who have blamed the Biden administration for record migrant crossings and made border security a central campaign issue.

After a dramatic scene on the floor where leaders tried to whip votes, the roll call ended in a rare 215-215 tie. A member of GOP leadership, Rep. Blake Moore, R-Utah, changed his vote to no at the last minute so that Republicans can bring the issue up again when Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., returns from cancer treatment.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Glenn Kirschner on “The Stephanie Miller Show”: Supreme Court ‘Likely’ to Allow Donald Trump Removal From Ballot

Former federal prosecutor and legal analyst Glenn Kirschner said Friday that the U.S. Supreme Courtis “likely” to allow Donald Trump to be removed from state ballots ahead of the 2024 election.

Trump, the frontrunner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, faces legal challenges that seek to remove him from the ballot in several states, with two having already barred his name from primary voters’ consideration. The lawsuits argue that Trump is ineligible to run under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, which bars officials who have sworn an oath to the U.S. Constitution from holding office if they engage in insurrection. Trump is facing federal charges in connection to his alleged actions leading up to the riot at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, which followed after he addressed his supporters during a rally on Capitol Hill. The former president has been kicked off ballots in Maine and Colorado because of the same constitutional amendment.

Read the rest of the story at Newsweek

Charlie Pierce: I’m Starting to Think Republicans Don’t Actually Want to Fix the Border Issue

Politico ran a story over the weekend about some Europeans who came over here to lobby for more aid to Ukraine and came away severely doubting the wisdom of the Founders. Take Anders Fogh Rasmussen, a conservative former prime minister of Denmark. He talked to them about his devotion to small government and how he’d cut down on immigration and the country’s tax rate. (Rasmussen’s lucky they didn’t put him on a primary ballot somewhere.) Then, talk turned to aid for Ukraine, and Rasmussen found himself cartwheeling down the rabbit hole.

Read the rest of Charlie Pierce’s piece at Esquire Politics

Mudslides, drowned highways, upended homes: Scenes from Southern California’s atmospheric river

Storm Damage Aftermath Trees Down
Storm Damage Aftermath Trees Down

Enriqueta Lima stood beside her car in Studio City, holding a puffer jacket over her head as a cold, steady rain fell Monday morning.

Lima, 49, had parked near Fryman Road, a street in a wooded canyon lined with million-dollar homes. She cleans a house there and was trying to figure out if it was safe to keep driving. She had not heard from the homeowners Sunday night, as the slow-moving storm poured down, so she decided to risk the drive to Studio City Monday after dropping her daughter off at school.

“I got scared thinking about driving here,” Lima said in Spanish. “I don’t want to park my car where it’s flooded.”

Read the rest of the story at The Los Angeles Times

Trump indicates it’s time for RNC chair Ronna McDaniel to step down

Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP
Ronna Romney McDaniel GOP

Former President Donald Trump indicated Monday that Ronna McDaniel should leave her post as head of the Republican National Committee in a shift from his past praise for her.

During a Newsmax interview at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, Trump was asked whether he thinks McDaniel should step aside. He responded affirmatively, saying: “Well, I think she knows that. I think she understands that.”

McDaniel was at Mar-a-Lago on Monday night, according to a source who saw her there.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Procedure for an enlarged prostate led to King Charles’ cancer diagnosis

King Charles Royals Royal
King Charles Royals Royal

King Charles III was diagnosed with cancer after he underwent a procedure for an enlarged prostate, Buckingham Palace said Monday, but it did not say what kind of cancer it was or how serious the condition is.

“During The King’s recent hospital procedure for benign prostate enlargement, a separate issue of concern was noted. Subsequent diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer,” the palace said in a statement.

It is unclear what form of cancer was detected, but the palace said Charles does not have prostate cancer. 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Senate Republicans threaten to block border security bill they negotiated

In a striking turn of events, Senate Republicans threatened Monday to block a major bipartisan package of border security measures and asylum restrictions, just one day after their chief negotiator signed off on it.

GOP senators left a special closed-door meeting in the evening predicting that their party would not provide enough votes to move forward with the package Wednesday, saying they agreed they need more time to discuss changes to the bill in the form of amendments.

“I would anticipate Wednesday the cloture vote does not pass,” Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., the lead GOP negotiator in the border talks, told reporters after the meeting. “People are saying, ‘Hey, I need a lot more time to be able to go through this.’”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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The Rude Pundit: JD Vance Proves Again What a Vile Motherf***er He Is

The Rude Pundit
The Rude Pundit

You think sometimes that you’re inured to the blithe madness and the constant stream of fuckery from people in the Trump Party (formerly known as the “Republican Party”). You can hear a compliant little bitch like House Speaker Mike Johnson, who always looks like he really wants to tell you about the boy he keeps in a shed in his backyard, say something ridiculous like “The President has executive authority right now” to do what he wants with the border, and think, “Yeah, that’s why Texas is totally listening to him when he says to take down the fucking razor wire.” You can hear Nikki Haley burble whatever pathetic swipe she wants to take at the former president, and think, “Call him a ‘rapist,’ Nikki, or get the fuck out of the race.” 

But every once in a while, one of these motherfuckers goes even further on one of the Sunday political gabfests and just says to everyone’s face, “I am a genuine motherfucker. If I see a mother, I will fuck her. I will fuck all the mothers because I’m a motherfucker. It’s right there in the word.” And on This Week with George Stephanopoulos’s Hair, Senator JD Vance proved that he’s one vile motherfucker. It was honestly one of the most fucked up performances I’ve seen in a while, and I’ve watched prison shank porn.

Read the rest of The Rude Pundit’s piece at his blog…

At Las Vegas Rally, Biden Promotes Promises Kept

President Joe Biden Speech
President Joe Biden Speech

Fresh off an overwhelming victory in South Carolina’s Democratic primary, President Biden rallied supporters on Sunday in Nevada, saying that he had kept his promises to the Black and Hispanic voters who helped elect him.

Mr. Biden spoke at a community center in the historic Westside neighborhood of Las Vegas, home to an African American community in a critical battleground state. He rattled off statistics about reductions in child poverty for Black, Hispanic and Indigenous people, talked about growth in minority-owned business and attacked former President Donald J. Trump for saying that immigration was “poisoning the blood” of the United States.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Here’s Everything You Might Have Missed At The 2024 Grammy Awards

Grammy Grammys
Grammy Grammys

Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish, Miley Cyrus and Victoria Monét won the night’s top honors, with Swift becoming the first person to win Album of the Year four times, this year for her record “Midnights.”

Eilish, who wrote “What Was I Made For?” for the “Barbie” soundtrack with her brother and writing partner Finneas, won Song of the Year.

In a tearful acceptance speech for the Best New Artist award, Monét quickly chronicled her 15-year career in the music industry. Monét, who has written for Ariana Grande, Fifth Harmony and several other artists, also won Best R&B Album.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Senators unveil $118.28 billion bipartisan bill to overhaul immigration system along with Israel, Ukraine aid

Capitol Washington DC Sunset
Capitol Washington DC

A bipartisan group of senators has released the text of a proposal of a bill that would tie billions of dollars in new foreign aid to the first major overhaul of the country’s immigration system in years.

Sens. James Lankford, R-Okla., Chris Murphy, D-Conn., and Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., hammered out an agreement that would beef up border security and immigration enforcement while authorizing more assistance to Israel, Taiwan and Ukraine.

Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), released the text of the $118.28 billion bipartisan national security supplemental package on Sunday night.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

Potentially life-threatening storm system begins pounding California

Storm Lightning Clouds Weather Rain
Storm Lightning Clouds Weather Rain

An “extremely dangerous situation” was unfolding in the Hollywood Hills area and around the Santa Monica Mountains early Monday, as a powerful, slow-moving storm triggered mudflows and debris flows that damaged some homes and forced residents to evacuate.

“Life-threatening landslides and additional flash flooding expected overnight,” the National Weather Service warned on social media. “Avoid travel if at all possible.”

Forecasters expressed deep concern also about Griffith Park, nearby foothills and Malibu and Beverly Hills. A flash flood warning was in effect for the area Monday morning.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Trump D.C. trial drops off court’s March calendar, clearing way for N.Y. case

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

Former president Donald Trump’s March 4 trial date on charges of plotting to overturn the results of the 2020 election has been dropped from the public calendar of the federal court in Washington, a sign of what has long been anticipated — that his claim of presidential immunity from criminal prosecution would delay his trial while it remains on appeal.

The change did not appear on the official criminal case docket before U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan, who has made clear since Trump filed his appeal on Dec. 7 that all trial deadlines would be suspended while he challenges the case. On appeal, Trump is arguing that the government does not have authority under the Constitution to bring charges against him for actions he took while president after the 2020 election through the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack, when he attempted to prevent Congress from confirming Joe Biden’s election victory.1`

Read the rest of the story at The Washington Post

Schumer Plans Vote Next Week on Border and Ukraine Deal, but Prospects Are in Doubt

Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the majority leader, said on Thursday that he would set up a test vote next week on a measure pairing an immigration crackdown with tens of billions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine and Israel, but the package is facing a rough road with Republican resistance in both chambers.

Mr. Schumer’s promise came as a small group of Republican and Democratic senators rushed to finalize a plan to clamp down on migration across the U.S. border with Mexico, which Republicans had demanded be paired with any further aid to Kyiv for its war against Russian aggression.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Trump’s Former Finance Chief in Negotiations to Plead Guilty to Perjury

Trump Tower Chicago
Trump Tower Chicago

Allen H. Weisselberg, a longtime lieutenant to Donald J. Trump, is negotiating a deal with Manhattan prosecutors that would require him to plead guilty to perjury, people with knowledge of the matter said.

As part of the potential agreement with the Manhattan district attorney’s office, Mr. Weisselberg would have to admit that he lied on the witness stand in Mr. Trump’s recent civil fraud trial, the people said.

Mr. Weisselberg, the former chief financial officer at Mr. Trump’s family business, also would have to say that he lied under oath during in an interview with the New York attorney general’s office, which brought the civil fraud case.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

FBI Agents Reportedly Missed ‘Hidden Room’ While Searching Mar-a-Lago for Government Documents

Trump Mar-A-Lago Maralago
Trump Mar-A-Lago Maralago

Special Counsel Jack Smith’s team questioned multiple witnesses about a closet and a “hidden room” that FBI agents did not enter while executing a search warrant at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in August 2022, according to ABC News.

Smith is prosecuting Trump over his retention of government documents after leaving the White House. The indictment alleges that upon leaving office, Trump took classified documents and willfully obstructed the federal government’s efforts to retrieve them. Trump has been charged in federal court in Florida on more than three dozen counts, including 30 violations of the Espionage Act. The former president pleaded not guilty on all counts.

Read the rest of the story at Mediaite

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Biden holds early cash edge, Trump’s legal bills mount and other takeaways from new campaign finance reports

dollars money bills
dollars money bills

President Joe Biden entered the election year with an early financial edge over Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, new filings show – a bright spot for an incumbent with low approval ratings who is girding for a bruising general election rematch with his 2020 foe.

Biden had nearly $46 million in cash on hand, compared with $33 million amassed by Trump, who is still working to dispatch his lone, remaining major rival for the GOP nomination, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

But the reports underscore the challenges ahead for the president: Despite facing no real threats to his nomination, Biden has not built the cash reserves that would allow him to swamp Trump’s campaign, even as the former president faces mounting legal woes and Haley’s staying power in the race.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

FBI director warns that Chinese hackers are preparing to ‘wreak havoc’ on US critical infrastructure

China Chinese Flag
China Chinese Flag

FBI Director Christopher Wray on Wednesday warned that Chinese hackersare preparing to “wreak havoc and cause real-world harm” to the US.

“China’s hackers are positioning on American infrastructure in preparation to wreak havoc and cause real-world harm to American citizens and communities, if or when China decides the time has come to strike,” Wray told the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party.

Though cyber officials have long sounded the alarm about China’s offensive cyber capabilities, Wray’s dramatic public warning underlines the huge level of concern at the top of the US government about the threat Chinese hackers pose to critical infrastructure nationwide. The head of the National Security Agency and other senior US officials also testified on Chinese cyber activity in front of the panel Wednesday.

Read the rest of the story at CNN

Chuck Grassley Signals Opposition to Bill Because It ‘Makes the President Look Good’

Capitol Washington DC
Capitol Washington DC

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) indicated he may oppose a bipartisan tax bill because he said it would make President Joe Biden “look good” in an election year.

The $78 billion package includes an enhanced child tax credit for low-income families and the extension of some tax benefits for businesses that were enacted in 2017. Additionally, the legislation contains funding for people affected by natural and manmade disasters.

“Passing a tax bill that makes the president look good — mailing out checks before the election — means he could be re-elected, and then we won’t extend the 2017 tax cuts,” Grassley told reporters on Wednesday, according to NBC News.

Read the rest of the story at Mediaite

Mark Zuckerberg apologizes to parents at online child safety hearing

Facebook Social Media
Facebook Social Media

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologized Wednesday to parents in the audience of a Senate online child safety hearing who say Instagram contributed to their children’s suicides or exploitation.

“I’m sorry for everything you’ve all gone through,” Zuckerberg said after Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., pressed him about whether he would apologize to the parents directly. “It’s terrible. No one should have to go through the things that your families have suffered.”

Lawmakers grilled Zuckerberg and the CEOs of TikTok, Discord, X and Snap at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing called “Big Tech and the Online Child Sexual Exploitation Crisis.” 

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

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Dem Lawmaker Rips GOP Reps To Their Faces: ‘You Bend The Knee To The Orange Jesus’

A Democratic lawmaker slammed his Republican colleagues over their fealty to Donald Trump on Tuesday night during a marathon 15-hour session on impeachment charges against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas over border security issues.

Rep. Rob Menendez (D-NJ) said the House Homeland Security Committee has held 17 hearings on the border, but zero full committee hearings on other issues within its jurisdiction such as emergency preparedness, cyber threats, infrastructure protection and more.

“We have not lived up to our oversight obligation here on this committee because you all are obsessed with the border,” he said. “Because you bend the knee to the ‘Orange Jesus’ as you refer to him across the aisle.”

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Trump lawyer Alina Habba makes, then backs off, ‘conflict’ allegation against E. Jean Carroll judge

Gavel Courtroom Justice Law Lawyer
Gavel Courtroom Justice Law Lawyer

Former President Donald Trump’s attorney Alina Habba on Tuesday backed off of a conflict of interest claim against the judge who presided over the E. Jean Carroll defamation trial after Carroll’s lawyer threatened to pursue sanctions.

Habba on Monday filed a letter with the court citing a New York Post story that said U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan and Carroll attorney Roberta Kaplan, who are not related, had worked at the major law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in the 1990s. An unidentified former partner at the firm, which employs around 1,000 lawyers, told the Post that Lewis Kaplan had been “like her mentor.”

Habba told the New York Post that the situation was “insane and so incestuous.”

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

House Republicans hold hearing on impeaching Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas

Capitol Washington DC Sunset
Capitol Washington DC

Members of the House Homeland Security Committee are meeting Tuesday to discuss the Republican-led impeachment articles against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

House Republicans accuse Mayorkas and the Biden administration of disregarding federal laws on immigration and seek to make Mayorkas the second Cabinet official to be impeached in U.S. history. Tuesday’s hearing is another step toward a formal vote to impeach Mayorkas in the full House, which will come next week, according to Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La.

Mayorkas and Democrats have pushed back, arguing that the impeachment effort is political.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Biden says he has decided on response to deaths of U.S. soldiers in Jordan

Biden Air Force One Arrival Israel
Biden Air Force One Arrival Israel

President Joe Biden said Tuesday that he has made a decision on how to respond to the drone attack that killed three U.S. soldiers and injured dozens of others at a base in northeast Jordan.

As Biden departed the White House on Tuesday morning, a reporter asked him whether he had made a decision in response to the attack by Iran-backed militants Sunday. He replied, “Yes.”

Biden vowed Sunday to retaliate and “hold all those responsible to account at a time and in a manner [of] our choosing” for the deadly attack, which injured more than 30 soldiers.

Read the rest of the story at NBC News

Malcolm Nance: A Lethal Attack in Jordan… Time to Punish Iran

Malcolm Nance
Malcolm Nance

Since the start of the Israeli counteroffensive operation, Swords of Iron, Iranian-backed guerilla groups in Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq have been peppering US forces in the Middle East with Shahid–136 drones and ballistic missiles.  US forces have defended themselves from over 160 drone and cruise missile attacks but over 100 soldiers were wounded. Today it became lethal.

Iranian-backed aggression culminated in an attack on a small special operations forces (SOF) base in Jordan known as Tower-22.  This base is juxtaposed in the tri-border areas of Jordan, Iraq, and Syria. T-22 has been in operation for well over a decade as a hidden entry and exit point for US long-range, special forces missions into Syria.

Read the rest of Malcolm Nance’s piece at and subscribe to his substack…

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E. Jean Carroll on jury’s $83 million Trump ruling: “They said ‘enough'”

E Jean Carroll
E Jean Carroll

E. Jean Carroll, a writer who accused former President Donald Trump of sexual assault and was awarded $83.3 million in damages on Friday for defamatory statements, says she believes the jury was sending a message with their verdict. 

“I think they said ‘enough,'” Carroll said in an interview on “CBS Mornings” on Monday. “Enough saying horrible, slimy, terrible things about me.”

Trump has vowed to appeal the decision by a federal jury in New York, which awarded Carroll $65 million in punitive damages and $18.3 million in compensatory damages for defamatory statements made after Carroll accused Trump in 2019 of sexually assaulting her in a department store dressing room decades earlier. When Trump denied the allegations, calling her a “whack job ” and claiming they had never met, Carroll sued him.

Read the rest of the story at CBS News

Enemy drone that hit US base in Jordan possibly confused with American drone

Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War
Israel Gaza Palestine Missiles War

An enemy drone was probably able to slip past defenses at a U.S. base in Jordan because American personnel mistook the enemy drone for one of their own returning from a surveillance mission, two U.S. officials confirmed Monday.

The officials say that the explosive-laden attack drone approached the base at a low altitude and hit a housing area at the remote Tower 22 base in the Jordanian desert near the border with Syria and Iraq.

The attack on Sunday by Iran-backed militants killed three American service members and wounded at least 40 others, U.S. officials said, with President Joe Biden warning that the strike will be met with American retaliation as Iran denied involvement.

Read the rest of the story at ABC News

‘This is truly a joke’: Trump lawyer blasts independent monitor’s report ahead of fraud trial ruling

Golden Gavel Court
Golden Gavel Court

Trump attorney Clifford Robert on Monday blasted a report issued last week by the former judge appointed to monitor the Trump Organization as an inaccurate depiction of the firm’s finances intended to justify the continued oversight of the company.

Robert criticized the report in a scathing letter to the judge overseeing Trump’s civil fraud trial, in which Trump is accused by New York Attorney General Letitia James of inflating his net worth in order to get more favorable loan terms. Trump has denied all wrongdoing, and a ruling in the case is expected at any time.

In a statement to ABC News, Trump attorney Chris Kise accused the report by independent monitor Barbara Jones of exaggerating immaterial issues in the Trump Organization’s finances to “fill the gaping hole in the Attorney General’s case” and justify the $2.6 million in fees collected by Jones.

Read the rest of the story at ABC Mews

Republicans Who Screamed About A Crisis On The Border Now Oppose A Plan To Fix It

For months, Republicans have shouted from the rooftops about a migrant crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border and how President Joe Biden needs to act to address it, insisting the flow of migrants is an urgent national security threat.

Now many on the right are urging their party to reject the very same things they said were needed to fix the problem, including tougher enforcement measures and a proposal to automatically shut down border crossings when it is overwhelmed. Instead, they appear set on impeaching the top Cabinet official in charge of the border, even though there is no evidence of a crime.

The GOP’s contortions aren’t just grating for Democrats but also on some conservative Republicans who have been deeply involved in crafting bipartisan legislation, which is expected to be unveiled soon, that would overhaul how migrants are processed at the border.

Read the rest of the story at HuffPost

Charlie Pierce: Could There Be a More Cursed Phrase Than ‘President Joe Manchin’?

Charlie Pierce Esquire
Charlie Pierce Esquire

As we know, a dream is a wish your heart makes. “President Joe Manchin” is a dream that makes your heart throw up. From CNN:

Privately, the West Virginia Democrat has told people that a Joe Biden health scare or a Donald Trump conviction could give him an opening to run as an independent this year. In public, during stops in states such as New Hampshire, South Carolina and Georgia, Manchin says he believes there’s a role for him as a national icon in the “fiscally responsible and socially compassionate” middle, comparable with the role Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders plays for the progressive left.

And who the hell