Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, attending a security conference with international leaders here in Munich, on Sunday brandished what he said was part of an Iranian drone shot down by Israel and warned that he was ready to go to war if Tehran continued to entrench itself in Syria….
Israel has long warned about the risk of conflict as Iranian forces and their allies, including Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group, have dug in on Syrian territory and approached the boundary with the Israeli-held portion of the Golan Heights.
Israel has carried out scores of airstrikes in Syria in recent years, focusing largely on what it says are advanced weapons stores or convoys of weapons meant for Hezbollah, and it has also reportedly hit Syrian government facilities involved in weapons development and an Iranian base under construction in Syria.
“I’ve made clear in word and deed that Israel has red lines it will enforce,” Mr. Netanyahu said on Sunday. “Israel will continue to prevent Iran from establishing a permanent military presence in Syria. Israel will continue to act to prevent Iran from establishing another terror base from which to threaten Israel.”
The Munich conference provided Mr. Netanyahu with a timely opportunity to appear on the world stage in his preferred role as Israel’s security czar and chief guardian against Iran, just days after the Israeli police recommended that he be charged with bribery, fraud and breach of trust in two corruption cases….
This even though the Supreme’s have stayed the Appeal Court’s decisions and let Trump and his modified ban stay in place….
A federal appeals court said Thursday that President Trump’s latest travel ban targeting nationals of six Muslim-majority countries unconstitutionally discriminates against Muslims.
The Richmond, Va.-based U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals’ 9-4 vote makes it the second federal appellate court to say the ban is illegal since it went into effect in September.
The San Francisco-based U.S. 9th Circuit ruled in December that the travel ban violated federal immigration law.
Both rulings have no current effect, as the U.S. Supreme Court has said the ban can go into place while it is challenged in the nation’s highest court. Supreme Court justices are expected to hear arguments concerning the ban in April and rule on its constitutionality in June….
Several Federal courts have rulled that the Trump Admin cannot attempt to end the program….
Congress is stuck trying to legislate and codify a new Immigration policy….
The Supreme Court will hold a closed-door meeting to decide whether or not to take up a lower court opinion that blocked the White House plan to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an amnesty program at the forefront of the debate on illegal immigration.
In an unusual move, the nation’s highest court will consider the possibility of reviewing the opinion without a ruling from a federal appeals court, following a direct request from the Justice Department to decide the case, according to CNN.
The department wants the court to rule on whether the administration must continue to accept DACA renewal applications from participants after federal Northern California District Judge William Alsup blocked President Trump‘s decision to end the program…..
This is unexpected win for Democrats from a court that is viewed as leaning in Republicans favor….
The Supreme Court on Monday denied a request from Pennsylvania state lawmakers to halt a redrawing of congressional districts for the 2018 primary and general elections. The state’s Supreme Court threw out the current map as unconstitutional because of partisan gerrymanders.
The high court’s ruling on Monday means Pennsylvania will have new congressional boundaries for the midterm elections. The primary is May 15….
The new map could help Democrats, who are outnumbered in the congressional delegation. Republicans hold 12 of the state’s 18 congressional seats, with one GOP seat currently vacant….
San Francisco will retroactively apply California’s new marijuana legalization laws to prior convictions, expunging or reducing misdemeanors and felonies dating to 1975, the district attorney’s office announced Wednesday.
Nearly 5,000 felony marijuana convictions will be reviewed, recalled and resentenced, and more than 3,000 misdemeanors that were sentenced prior to Proposition 64’s passage will be dismissed and sealed, Dist. Atty. George Gascón said. The move will clear people’s records of crimes that can be barriers to employment and housing.
San Francisco’s move could be the beginning of a larger movement to address old pot convictions, though it’s still far from clear how many other counties will follow the famously liberal city’s lead….
In some states these guys couldn’t vote for themselves…
Three of the four Republicans are trying to blame Presiodent Obama for their convictions…
When Joe Arpaio, the former Maricopa County sheriff, announced his Senate candidacy on Tuesday, he became the fourth viable Republican 2018 congressional candidate who’s been convicted of a crime. And like two of the other GOP cons running for office, he has cited his criminal record as a partial justification for his candidacy.
The other convicted criminals running for office as Republicans are Don Blankenship, the former head of the coal mining company Massey Energy who is running in the Republican primary to challenge Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.); former Rep. Michael Grimm, who is challenging incumbent Rep. Dan Donovan (R-N.Y.) to reclaim the Staten Island congressional seat he once held; and Rep. Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.), who is running for re-election….
The only Democrat with a record running for office is David Alcorn, convicted of stalking, who is one of nine candidates for the party’s nomination in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee would not support Alcorn, saying “he is not fit to run for office.”
This is pure Donal Trump tit for tat scorched earth action…
Since Trump is under investigation ?
He’s gonna try to leverage THAT against him going after Hillary Clinton….Next he might go after Barack Obama?….
With AG Session beat up so much he’ll just about anything asked to ?
We are treading on untouched ground in American politics…
And Trump has no problem using the FBI as his club…
The Justice Department has launched a new inquiry into whether the Clinton Foundation engaged in any pay-to-play politics or other illegal activities while Hillary Clinton served as secretary of State, law enforcement officials and a witness tells The Hill.
FBI agents from Little Rock, Ark., where the foundation was started, have taken the lead in the investigation and have interviewed at least one witness in the last month, and law enforcement officials said additional activities are expected in the coming weeks.
The officials, who spoke only on condition of anonymity, said the probe is examining whether the Clintons promised or performed any policy favors in return for largesse to their charitable efforts or whether donors made commitments of donations in hopes of securing government outcomes.
The probe may also examine whether any tax-exempt assets were converted for personal or political use and whether the foundation complied with applicable tax laws, the officials said….
A senior law enforcement official said the Justice Department was exploring whether any issues from that probe should be re-opened but cautioned the effort was not at the stage of a full investigation.
One challenge for any Clinton-era investigation is that the statute of limitations on most federal felonies is five years, and Clinton left office in early 2013.
The changes won’t be on the Federal level…President Obama tried that but stingy Republicans wouldn’t go along …..
Minimum wage workers in 18 states will get a pay hike next week when higher wage floors go into effect around the country for 2018.
With the federal minimum wage remaining just $7.25 per hour, more and more states have opted to implement their own, higher rates that local employers must observe. Many of the bumps slated for New Year’s Day come courtesy of recent ballot initiatives approved by voters or bills passed by statehouses, in red and blue states alike.
Some of those states have laws requiring that the minimum wage is adjusted each year according to an inflation index, to rise with the cost of living. So several of the raises amount to less than a quarter an hour.
But other states that recently enacted new laws will have more significant increases. Maine’s will move a full dollar, to $10. Hawaii’s will rise 85 cents, to $10.10. And Colorado’s will increase 90 cents, to $10.20.
Here are the states with new minimum wages, according to the Economic Policy Institute, a think tank that tracks minimum wage legislation:
The Trump Admin is moving to expel ALL illegal immigrants it can find, wether they have had past promise’s from prior presidential admin or not….This has been the policy of John Kelly when he became Dept. of Homeland Security head less than a year ago….
His explanation was he is just following the law….
In his move up to the President’s chief of staff, he has placed a deputy to him over at DHS…..She seems to be following her old boss , who is still her boss….
Kelly has also explained that if there is to be a change in the law?
It has to come from Congress….
That IS a problem….
This Congress has unable to do much of anything except run around in circles and have its members talk to the media….
With the Republicans in firm control of things?
It seems like their position is to keep stalling and let the government keep rounding up undocumented people and ship them out….
Democrats have signaled that they will try to force action on the ‘Dreamers’ program in the next two final weeks of the 2017 legisaltive calendar … or…They will move to shut down the government….
The fight over “Dreamers” is heating up as the legislative calendar winds down, setting the stage for a year-end clash that’s heightening the odds of a government shutdown.
Lawmakers headed into the long Thanksgiving recess are in stark disagreement over how, and when, to provide legal cover for undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children — legislation both parties say they want after President Trump rescinded the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in September.
Behind Trump, GOP leaders are opposed to attaching any DACA provisions to legislation extending government funding, which expires Dec. 8. But Democratic leaders, pressured by their activist base and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, are insisting that the DACA protections be finalized before year’s end. Many Democrats are threatening to withhold support for an omnibus spending bill if the immigration language isn’t included.
With just 12 legislative days left on the calendar — and the Republicans laser-focused on enacting a tax overhaul before Christmas — GOP leaders have some tough decisions ahead. And the question of timing on DACA is becoming every bit as sticky as the substance of the bill.
Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has repeatedly noted that Trump, in dismantling the Obama-era program, gave Congress until March 5 to come up with a legislative fix. With that in mind, the Speaker has suggested Republicans would be fine addressing the issue early next year.
“I don’t think we should put artificial deadlines in front of the one we already have,” Ryan told reporters this month.
But a number of Republicans, moderates and conservatives alike, want to move more quickly….
He doesn’t do much of anything because of any other reason except boosting HIS EGO…..
The UCLA basketball played who are accused of shoplifting and where held in China did in fact thank President Trump for asking the Chienese leader to release them….
LaVar Ball, the mercurial father of one of players didn’t….His ego is is about the size of Trump’s….
The players faced potential jail sentences for the charge, but Trump reportedly spoke to Chinese President Xi Jinping about resolving the situation. The players were released, and landed in the United States last week.
Trump took credit for their release, and questioned in a tweet whether the players would thank him.
The players subsequently held a press conference last week in which they apologized for the incident and thanked Trump.
ESPN on Friday asked LaVar Ball about Trump’s role in bringing his son back to the United States.
“Who?” Ball responded. “What was he over there for? Don’t tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out.”…
The lawyer for former U.S. national security adviser Michael Flynn on Friday labeled as “outrageous” and “false” media reports suggesting his client may have been involved in an alleged plan to seize a Muslim cleric and deliver him to Turkey in exchange for millions of dollars.
The rare statement from lawyer Robert Kelner came after the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Special Counsel Robert Mueller was investigating an alleged proposal under which Flynn and his son would receive up to $15 million for seizing Fethullah Gulen from his U.S. home and delivering him to the Turkish government.
The Journal cited people familiar with the investigation.
NBC also reported on Friday about an alleged December 2016 meeting, saying Mueller’s team was investigating whether Flynn met with senior Turkish officials in the weeks before President Donald Trump’s January 2017 inauguration about a possible quid pro quo in which Flynn would be paid to do the bidding of Turkey’s government while in office. NBC cited multiple people familiar with the probe….
Vox is out with a piece that asks a question that SHOULD be asked….
What happens if the Republican majority in the House are MORE afraid of losing their jobs by voting to impeach a guy who 60% of America doesn’t approve, of and 49% are all right if they do bring him up on charges…… BUT….60% of Republicans do approve of the guy, not caring about his politics , or that he can remember what he said ten minutes ago …(Most American actually don’t seem to care about these doings because they do NOT affect them directly)
What happens if 60% of the Grand Ole party voters/supporters/party members poll that they do NOT care if Donald Trump starts a war with North Korea that could get tens of thousands of Korea’s killed and thousands of Americansoldiers also?
What happen’s if Donald Trump keeps coaxing his adopted party to KEEP TRYING to ‘steal from the poor and give to rich?’…..
All these things ARE FUCKING SCARY…..
But so far?
It seems that almost NOTHING is more important to most Republican lawmakers than KEEPING their jobs….
Some of those who don’t like what going on have stood up and been greeted with applause….But most who question Trump out loud are subjected to abuse from some of their local vocal party members …..
They get to add that to Trump berating them in public…..
In reaction to THIS?
Some have announced they’re giving up and not running for re-election…
Most keep their heads down, swallow hard and vote to support Trump’s all over the place requests and proclaim their allegiance to Trump’s wishes….
The specter of Donald Trump winning the GOP nomination and Presidency still haunts these party members….Heck, it still spooks the media which has always ignored the rightwingnuts…But now tries to front some of their crazy stuff….
If you get the time to read the Vox piece by David Roberts…..It IS good to understand NOT the law and legal part of Trump’s story for the last year…It sis also important to understand the political dynamic he is running on the American government…..And things unimaginable COULD occur next year that could change the American way of governance and way of life if one parties lawmakers do NOT grow the ball’s to stand up be counted if Robert Mueller and his investigators and prosecutors lay down a story of a cover-up’s , lie’s , money, laundering, conspiracy , obstruction and maybe even treason….
What if facts and persuasion just don’t matter anymore?
As long as conservatives can do something — steal an election, gerrymander crazy districts to maximize GOP advantage, use the filibuster as a routine tool of opposition, launch congressional investigations as political attacks, hold the debt ceiling hostage, repress voting among minorities, withhold a confirmation vote on a Supreme Court nominee, defend a known fraud and sexual predator who has likely colluded with a foreign government to gain the presidency — they will do it, knowing they’ll be backed by a relentlessly on-message media apparatus.
And if that’s true, if the very preconditions of science and journalism as commonly understood have been eroded, then all that’s left is a raw contest of power.
Donald Trump has the power to hold on to the presidency, as long as elected Republicans, cowed by the conservative base, support him. That is true almost regardless of what he’s done or what’s proven by Mueller. As long as he has that power, he will exercise it. That’s what recent history seems to show.
Democrats do not currently have the numbers to stop him. They can’t do it without some help from Republicans. And Republicans seem incapable, not only of acting on what Mueller knows, but of even coming to know it.
Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe US institutions have more life in them than I think. But at this point, it’s just very difficult to imagine anything that could bridge the epistemic gulf between America’s tribes. We are split in two, living in different worlds, with different stories and facts shaping our lives. We no longer learn or know things together, as a country, so we can no longer act together, as a country.
So we may just have to live with a president indicted for collusion with a foreign power….