Sailing: One Day to go until the 35th America’s Cup begins….

Sport Sailing will begin around the beautiful island of Bermuda….

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You can watch the Opening Press Conference via YT Stream and listen & see what the 6 Skippers will have to say….
Meanwhile Mother Nature has throw us a curveball on the 1st Day of Racing as it might be cancelled because of high Winds.
Daniel G.
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Mueller’s FBI probing the President’s son-in-law’s contacts ….

…drip..Drip….DRIP….

It reaches closer and CLOSER…..

Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and one of his senior advisers, has come under FBI scrutiny in the Russia investigation, multiple U.S. officials told NBC News.

Investigators believe Kushner has significant information relevant to their inquiry, officials said. That does not mean they suspect him of a crime or intend to charge him.

The FBI’s scrutiny of Kushner places the bureau’s sprawling counterintelligence and criminal investigation not only on the doorstep of the White House, but in the Trump family circle. The Washington Post first reported last week that a senior White House official close to Trump was a “person of interest,” but did not name the person. The term “person of interest” has no legal meaning.

Image: Jared Kushner and Donald Trump
Jared Kushner departs the White House with President Donald Trump on March 15. Win McNamee / Getty Images

The officials said Kushner is in a different category from former Trump aides Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn, who are formally considered subjects of the investigation. Records of both Manafort and Flynn have been demanded by grand jury subpoenas, NBC News has reported.

It is not known whether Kushner has received any records requests from federal investigators.

Also unclear is what precisely about Kushner’s activities has drawn the FBI’s interest as it investigates whether Trump associates coordinated with the Russian campaign to interfere in the election. Former FBI Director Robert Mueller is now leading the probe as a special counsel….

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Breaking…Federal Appeals Court Keeps Trump Muslin Ban 2.0 on HOLD…

Trump KEEPS striking out on this attempted  action…

President Donald Trump’s executive order barring U.S. entry from six mostly Muslim countries was put on continued hold by a federal appeals court Thursday.

The Richmond, Virginia-based panel said Trump’s prior calls for a ”Muslim ban” could be considered in weighing the legality of the March 6 executive order.

A forerunner of the executive order incited chaos and condemnation when it was rolled out without warning in January. Federal courts soon blocked its enforcement, prompting a re-do. Subsequent controversies have distracted from Trump’s agenda, some by his own doing, including his firing of FBI Director James Comey amid the bureau’s investigation into potential campaign ties to Russia.

Thursday’s ruling is the first of two federal appeals court decisions expected to decide whether the revised travel ban, dubbed, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States” is lawful. An appeals panel in Seattle heard argument on May 15. A contradictory ruling would virtually ensure review by the U.S. Supreme Court….

Bloomberg…..

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Trump to NATO Maybe…Depends on if you guys bring the check….

While White House aides peddled the line that President Trump would echo the pledge of EVERY President since the North American Treaty Organization was born ….To back the organization regardless….

Donald Trump has gone back on his campaign feeling that the America wants the countries to shoulder more of the money ….(At least 2% of their GDP which would give the organization more than $100 Billion more in spending)

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Several countries  have spent more…Most have not…

Trump’s failure to strongly back NATO can only be looked at with smiles by the Russians and worry by the Europeans who are NOT happy with Trump’s position…

Mr. Trump’s refusal to say he supports NATO’s common defense provision, known as Article 5, left European diplomats dismayed. Mr. Trump spoke Thursday at the dedication of a NATO memorial devoted to Article 5. He previously raised questions about the U.S. commitment to the provision during his campaign.

Mr. Trump Thursday said allies “owed massive amounts of money” for past years and they have failed to live up to the alliance spending guideline of 2% of gross domestic product.

“We have to make up for many years lost,” Mr. Trump said. ”If NATO countries made their full and complete contributions, then NATO would be even stronger than it is today.”

Had all NATO members spent 2% on defense last year, the alliance would have another $119 billion…..

While European allies regard the NATO guideline as a rough goal to move toward, the U.S. under Mr. Trump has considered it a much firmer requirement.

“2% is the bare minimum for confronting today’s very real and very vicious threats,” Mr. Trump said.

He said 23 of NATO’s 28 members are below the 2% level.

While Mr. Trump didn’t voice unequivocal support for NATO’s common defense provision, he did say the U.S. wouldn’t forsake its allies….

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The Senate gets nervous about Trump’s possible going back to war in the Middle East…

The Generals running Trump’s Defense side have presented a more muscular America in the Middle East…

That would be a ramping up of American men and women going BACK to Iraq, Afghanistan and other place’s like Africa…

Lawmakers aren’t happy to give a President who doesn’t sweat the details unlimited power in military action and will try to set some limits on his actions until comes to them…(And cost the country Billions)

Such votes tend have HUGE political ramifications for US Senators futures….

As President Donald Trump increasingly flexes the might of the military he now controls, the Senate is reviving efforts to claw back some of that authority from the White House.

Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Tim Kaine (D-Va.) are joining forces to reintroduce an Authorization of the Use of Military Force against the Islamic State and other terror groups, aiming to assert more congressional power over the post-9/11 war on terror. Elsewhere in the Capitol, Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) are unveiling legislation Thursday that would halt some of the arms sales to Saudi Arabia in what Trump’s White House has touted as a $110 billion deal.

The bipartisan efforts aren’t new. Flake and Kaine pushed for an AUMF debate two years ago after President Barack Obama sent lawmakers his own draft of military authorization amid the conflict in Syria. And last fall, Paul forced a vote on a separate arms sale to the Saudis in Obama’s final months in office.

But the renewed efforts show real appetite among Democrats and Republicans to rein in some of the new president’s authority on matters of war, which came into focus with Trump’s missile strikes in Syria last month after a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens, including children.

Trump earned broad praise for the strikes from Capitol Hill, but lawmakers also warned against escalating military action abroad without first getting the approval of Congress. The White House has operated under war resolutions passed by Congress in 2001 and 2002….

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A Conservative questions where should he sign up these days?

RedState runs a piece from a Conservative that is questioning  faith in the  Grand Ole Party and explores other political choices….

Some Conservatives ARE NOT going along with Trump’s Republican Party….

Yesterday’s news that a Republican candidate for U.S. Congress from Montana body-slammed a reporter has me pensive once again about where I and other conservatives like me belong.

Greg Gianforte was charged with misdemeanor assault for lifting The Guardian’s Ben Jacobs by the neck and slamming him to the ground hard enough to break his glasses, all because Jacobs asked for a response from the candidate regarding the CBO’s scoring of the American Health Care Act. Newspapers have pulled endorsements in what will hopefully not be the last of the repercussions for Gianforte’s conduct. (Hat tip to Andrea Ruth for such a fantastic job following this story.)

One congressional candidate, who is already facing swift and harsh backlash — some social media defenders notwithstanding — is only one straw, but it’s just the latest in a series that has made it harder and harder to take the Republican Party seriously anymore. Founder of the Gianforte Family Foundation, whose mission it is to “support the work of faith-based organizations engaged in outreach work, strengthening families, and helping the needy,” Gianforte also has worked with Focus on the Family and donated over a million dollars to a creationist museum. He is a poster child for political engagement by a conservative Christian entrepreneur.

And this becomes his witness.

Liberals punch people and set fire to tires in order not to provide a platform to views they don’t like too, so violence as a solutionto ideological challenges is largely the order of the day in American politics. Without a doubt, it is a pervasive problem across the spectrum.

Yet in spite of the if-it-bleeds-it-leads bias toward reporting the outrageous, I argue that the biggest problem in the American political system is that there is an overwhelming lack of seriousness. It infects the GOP at least as much as any other party, and when it sufficiently debilitates its host, the host sees only escalating absurdity as the way forward.

I remain a registered Republican. Certainly I approve of a greater number of GOP politicians — Ben Sasse, Mike Lee, my own state of Michigan’s lieutenant governor, Brian Calley, for example — than of any other party, but that is mostly due to the fact that the only rival to the Republican Party in size is the Democratic Party. Before I’m a Republican, I’m a conservative, but the movement and its party manifestations over the past five, but especially two, years have threatened to return it to the laughable status it maintained prior to the work Bill Buckley and so many others did to make it intellectually respectable — and elect Ronald Reagan.

Kristen Soltis Anderson at The Washington Examiner recently highlighted the fact that young people are abandoning the GOP ship like it just hit an iceberg. In 18 months, 23 percent of those 18-29 defected from the party and have not returned. As no course correction appears forthcoming, there’s no reason to expect that to change any time soon.

From personal experience, I can attest to the fact that Christians under forty are marching out of the Republican tent, because they are finding it difficult to reconcile their faith with a party whose titular head shows a callous disregard for the very minorities and vulnerable people we conservatives told ourselves our policies best served….

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Manchester bombing case American Media leaks cause problems for Trump…

The American media has publicized the crime scene images from the Manchester concert bombing…

The cops there are NOT happy…

The British have declined to provide more info on the case , the media is reporting (I seriously doubt this is actually true ion the intel level)….

Trump has just ordered a probe into how the name got to the American media…

Leaks have been trouble for Trump recently….

President Trump on Thursday condemned “leaks of sensitive information,” responding to a complaint by Britain’s prime minister, Theresa May, over disclosures of details from the investigation into Britain’s deadliest terrorist attack since 2005.

“The alleged leaks coming out of government agencies are deeply troubling,” Mr. Trump said in a statement. “These leaks have been going on for a long time, and my administration will get to the bottom of this. The leaks of sensitive information pose a grave threat to our national security.”

He added: “I am asking the Department of Justice and other relevant agencies to launch a complete review of this matter, and, if appropriate, the culprit should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Unauthorized disclosures have dogged Mr. Trump, who has regularly and angrily criticized leaks from his government. In his first month in office, he called for a Justice Department investigation into what he said were “criminal leaks.” But two dimensions of the latest controversy are new: The disclosures in this case are about a terrorism investigation led by a foreign ally, and the British government has brought its complaints to a receptive audience.

In a statement, Mrs. May’s office said she would bring up the matter at a NATO gathering in Brussels on Thursday evening and would “make clear to President Trump that intelligence that is shared between our law enforcement agencies must remain secure.”….

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Utah Sen. Hatch leaning towards retiring…Romney Run coming?

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This story has been running in the media for a while….

The wait ir for hatch to confirm what he will do….

UtahPolicy.com has been told by various sources that U.S. Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, is leaning against running for re-election in 2018, and will likely retire. The second part of the rumor is that Mitt Romney is very likely to seek Hatch’s seat.

Of course, it can always be the case that Hatch could change his mind and seek re-election, UtahPolicy is told.

He clearly is waiting out the field – by not announcing his intentions, by not actually starting a campaign – he is keeping other legitimate GOP candidates from announcing, or starting a campaign. Some prospective candidates are becoming impatient and a little irritated that Hatch hasn’t announced his plans.

UtahPolicy is hearing that Hatch will announce in the fall, perhaps as early as August, that he intends to retire and devote his efforts to the Hatch Foundation – which UtahPolicy.com has discussed previously.

Hatch is now 83. He would be 84 during his 2018 re-election run, and be 90 if he served out another full six-year term.

Hatch is already the longest serving Republican senator in U.S. history, having won his first election in 1976 as a then-underdog candidate…..

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Obama greeted by up to 100,000 in Berlin visit…

Another time Barack Obama outdoes Donald Trump with crowds….

The former President had a good time hanging with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and speaking about not closing up America from the rest of the world behind a ‘wall’…..

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The former US president, Barack Obama, has made a call for international engagement as he told an audience of tens of thousands in Berlin that “we can’t hide behind a wall.”

Obama was discussing democracy and global responsibility with the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, as the country marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. It was Obama’s first speaking event in Europe since leaving the White House in January.

At the 18th-century monument in Berlin that has also heard celebrated speeches from Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton, Obama and Merkel took questions about shaping democracy from a teacher, an actor, a social worker and a student.

After lauding Merkel as someone who had done “outstanding work,” Obama launched a defence of his own presidency and the values of liberal democracy championed by both leaders.

Citing the rise of nationalism and xenophobia in parts of the world, Obama told the crowd that “we have to push back against those trends that would violate human rights or suppress democracy or restrict individual freedoms.”

In questions to both leaders on the refugee crisis, Obama said nation states had a duty to help people in need but also to make clear to their own populations the interconnected nature of the world….

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image…..cnn.com

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It appears Donald Trump is hurting the American Tourism Business…

Telling people NOT to come to America and making it more difficult doesn’t make people want to come visit a place…They tend to go elsewhere…

And THAT certainly does create jobs and make America extra money….

The US tourism business is in trouble — and President Trump may be to blame.

America’s share of international tourism has dropped 16% in March, compared to the same month in 2016, according to Foursquare data released Wednesday. 

The decline began in October 2016, the month before the presidential election. From October to March, tourism-related traffic has fallen an average of 11% in the US, compared to the previous year. Meanwhile, tourism in the rest of the world has increased 6% year-over-year during the same period.

Foursquare a location intelligence company best known for its app that tracks user visits to restaurants, bars, hotels, and other sites, as well as the company’s work in analytics, advertising and developer solutions.

Foursquare analysts connected the drop to President Trump’s America first rhetoric and policies that have made some international tourists wary of visiting the US. Foursquare CEO Jeff Glueck notes that residents from the Middle East and Central/South America — regions for which Trump has encouraged stricter immigration and travel policies — have been avoiding the US more than residents of Asia, Europe, and other regions….

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iPhone 8?….How about iPhone 9?

Macrumors is up with a possible peek at the 2018 predecessor to unreleased iPhone 8….

As stories surrounding the 2017 launch of the “iPhone 8” continue to heat up, a report from The Bell this morning has already begun rumors for next year’s so-called “iPhone 9.” According to the report, which centers on Apple’s and Samsung’s supply chain deal for the 2018 iPhone, the iPhone 9 will launch in two OLED screen sizes: 5.28-inch and 6.46-inch (via The Investor).

Apple currently sells a 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display in its iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus smartphone devices, respectively. Later this year, the company is expected to launch new iPhones in three sizes: two “iPhone 7s” models will keep the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display sizes, while the major new “iPhone 8” will include a 5.8-inch OLED screen.

A rendering of the iPhone 8

The report said the iPhone 9 is expected to come in two OLED models — 5.28- and 6.46-inch display sizes. Samsung’s OLED shipment is also likely to be more than double at 180 million units….

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions failed to list several Russian contacts on his security clearance form…

Is the nation’s Attorney General gonna be answering questions from former Attorney General Mueller’s guys doing the Russian’s connections probe?…

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions did not disclose on security clearance forms that he met twice last year with Russia’s ambassador, CNN reported Wednesday.

The form, the SF-86, asks applicants to disclose any contacts with a foreign government or its representatives over the past seven years.

Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores told CNN that an FBI employee who was helping Sessions complete the form advised him that he did not have to disclose meetings with foreign ambassadors that took place during his time in the Senate.

She said Sessions listed a year’s worth of meetings with foreign officials on the form.

CNN notes that federal officials do not have to list meetings that were part of foreign conferences attended while conducting government business — though Sessions’ meetings with Sergey Kislyak do not appear to fall under that exemption. …

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House Healthcare Bill would knock 23 Million Americans out of coverage…

The Congressional Budget Office is out with it’s study of the final House  ‘Repeal’ bill…

It ain’t pretty…

Health-care legislation adopted by House Republicans earlier this month would leave 23 million more Americans uninsured by 2026 than under current law, the Congressional Budget Office projected Wednesday — only a million fewer than the estimate for the House’s previous bill.

The nonpartisan agency’s finding, which drew immediate fire from Democrats, patient advocates, health industry officials and some business groups, is likely to complicate Republicans’ push to pass a companion bill in the Senate.

The new score, which reflects last-minute revisions that Republicans made to win over several conservative lawmakers and a handful of moderates, calculates that the American Health Care Act would reduce the federal deficit by $119 billion between 2017 and 2026. That represents a smaller reduction than the $150 billion CBO estimated in late March, largely because House leaders provided more money in their final bill to offset costs for consumers with expensive medical conditions and included language that could translate to greater federal spending on health insurance subsidies.

As GOP senators quickly distanced themselves from the updated numbers, what became apparent is the difficult balancing act congressional leaders face as they seek to rewrite large portions of the Affordable Care Act. Some senators are eager to soften portions of the House bill, including cuts to entitlement programs and provisions that would allow insurers in individual states to offer fewer benefits in their health plans or to charge consumers with costly medical conditions higher premiums….

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GOP Candidate in Montana race said to have ‘body-slammed’ reporter…Police Called…

The House Special Election is tomorrow….

Greg Gianforte, the Republican candidate in Montana’s special congressional election, was accused Wednesday night of assaulting a reporter for the Guardian who had been trying to ask him a question. Gianforte, who is seen as the slight favorite in an election that ends Thursday, left what was supposed to be a final campaign rally, at his Bozeman headquarters, without giving a speech.

The Gallatin County sheriff’s office said Wednesday evening that it was “currently investigating allegations of an assault involving Greg Gianforte.”

In an audio recording published by the Guardian, Ben Jacobs can be heard asking Gianforte to respond to the fresh Congressional Budget Office score of the American Health Care Act, a bill Gianforte has said he was glad to see the House of Representatives approve. According to Alexis Levinson, a reporter for BuzzFeed, Jacobs had followed the candidate into a room where a camera was set up for an interview, before the event began.

“We’ll talk to you about that later,” Gianforte says in the audio.

“Yeah, but there’s not going to be time,” says Jacobs. “I’m just curious about it right now.”

After Gianforte tells Jacobs to direct the question to his spokesman, Shane Scanlon, there is the sound of an altercation, and Gianforte begins to scream.

“I’m sick and tired of you guys!” Gianforte says. “The last guy that came in here did the same thing. Get the hell out of here! Get the hell out of here! The last guy did the same thing. Are you with the Guardian?”

“Yes, and you just broke my glasses,” Jacobs says.

“The last guy did the same damn thing,” Gianforte says.

“You just body-slammed me and broke my glasses,” Jacobs says.

“Get the hell out of here,” Gianforte says….

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Trump’s base IS shrinking…FiveThirtyEight…

For those who keep says Trump’s base is holding?

Read the below….

(Republicans should be worried if this holds)

Trump endured a lot of turbulence in the general election but stuck it out to win the Electoral College. The media doesn’t always guess right about which stories will resonate with voters.

But the theory isn’t supported by the evidence. To the contrary, Trump’s base seems to be eroding. There’s been a considerable decline in the number of Americans who strongly approve of Trump, from a peak of around 30 percent in February to just 21 or 22 percent of the electorate now. (The decline in Trump’s strong approval ratings is larger than the overall decline in his approval ratings, in fact.) Far from having unconditional love from his base, Trump has already lost almost a third of his strong support. And voters who strongly disapprove of Trump outnumber those who strongly approve of him by about a 2-to-1 ratio, which could presage an “enthusiasm gap” that works against Trump at the midterms. The data suggests, in particular, that the GOP’s initial attempt (and failure) in March to pass its unpopular health care bill may have cost Trump with his core supporters.

These estimates come from the collection of polls we use for FiveThirtyEight’s approval ratings tracker. Many approval-rating polls give respondents four options: strongly approve, somewhat approve, somewhat disapprove and strongly disapprove. Ordinarily, we only estimate Trump’s overall approval and disapproval. But we went back and collected this more detailed data for all polls for which it was available, and then we reran our approval ratings program to output numbers for all four approval categories instead of the usual two.1 Here are Trump’s strongly approve and somewhat approve ratings from shortly after the start of his term2 through this Tuesday….

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While Trump visits Europe….Obama arrives also….

Barack and Michelle Obama in Siena on Monday. Obama and Trump have not met or spoken since the inauguration, and that seems unlikely to change.

Donald Trump makes his European debut as US president this week just as his predecessor, Barack Obama, returns to the continent for his first visit since relinquishing the White House in January.

While apparently unintentional, the coinciding visits serve to highlight Europe’s radically different view of the two men. A Pew survey last June found 77% of Europeans had confidence in Obama – and 9% in the man who succeeded him.

The contrast will come into sharp focus on Thursday, when the current and former presidents have parallel public engagements in Europe, providing a split-screen comparison between their extreme differences….

Obama will deliver a speech alongside German chancellor Angela Merkel at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate. The Obama foundation say that the invitation from Merkel came before the US election, so the fact he is in Europe as the same time as Trump is pure coincidence.

Europeans are already wistful in anticipation. Pictures of Obama on holiday in Tuscany with his wife Michelle – relaxed and smiling in an open-buttoned shirt – have only heightened the sense of longing for a president whose rationality, sophistication and emotional intelligence often contrast with his successor.

Writing about Obama’s Berlin visit, the highpoint of a season of celebrations to mark the 500th anniversary of the Protestant church, the Leipziger Zeitung said his presence in Germany would be equivalent to that of a “healer”.

“Already he is a painfully-missed ex-president,” the newspaper wrote in an editorial, describing him as an “eloquent, charismatic preacher” – qualities it suggested were sorely lacking in Trump.

Obama and Trump have not met or spoken since the inauguration….

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