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Name: Don
Gender: Male
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Home country: USA
Current location: Amherst. MA
Member since: Sat Sep 1, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Journal Archives

Trump Campaign CEO Steve Bannon Repeatedly Failed To Disclose Breitbart News’ Financial Ties To...

Trump Campaign CEO Steve Bannon Repeatedly Failed To Disclose Breitbart News’ Financial Ties To Egyptian Businessman

Undisclosed ties to an Egyptian businessman and former political official are just the latest disclosure issues for Stephen Bannon, chief executive for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign.

Bannon, who is also the executive chairman of Breitbart News, “is known to stay,” according to The Guardian, in a Washington, D.C., town home owned by Egyptian businessman and former politician Mostafa El-Gindy. Gindy’s home also reportedly serves as the Breitbart News D.C. headquarters. Breitbart News has not disclosed its financial ties to El-Gindy in numerous pieces that cite him favorably, while Bannon and Breitbart News have baselessly accused Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton of engaging in pay-for-play deals with foreign countries as secretary of state and spread false smears shared discredited book Clinton Cash.

Bannon, whom Trump hired on August 17 to help head Trump’s presidential campaign, used his position as Breitbart News’ executive chairman to run the conservative website as a propaganda arm of theTrump campaign. The Guardian reported August 26 that Bannon is “is known to stay” in a Washington, D.C., town home, known as the “Breitbart embassy,” that’s owned by “Mostafa El-Gindy, an Egyptian businessman and former member of parliament.” Breitbart has reportedly operated its Washington, D.C., bureau from theGindy-owned home since 2011. From the Guardian’s report:

Bannon also co-owns a condominium in Los Angeles and is known to stay at the so-called “Breitbart embassy”, a luxurious $2.4m townhouse beside the supreme court in Washington DC, where his website’s staff work from basement offices. A Bloomberg profile of Bannon published last October, with which he cooperated, stated that Bannon “occupies” the townhouse and described it as being “his”.



Can President Hillary Survive the Media’s Fake Scandals? - By Joy Reid

Good luck governing next year while guilty until proven innocent in the eyes of the press, and as Republicans call her both accidental and illegitimate.

Joy-Ann Reid

08.26.16 1:00 AM ET

With Donald Trump’s campaign continuing to careen into incoherence, it’s becoming increasingly clear that barring some unforeseen circumstance (or low non-white voter turnout) Hillary Clinton will likely win the presidency. However, she will never win the peace. Hillary seems destined, if she wins, to be a president without popular devotion or even a public honeymoon. And she will likely spend four, or eight, years at constant war with a hostile press.

Why the relationship between Mrs. Clinton and the media is so fraught is a complicated tale. Journalist Jonathan Allen last year tackled the miserable web of mutual distrust and distaste that has defined the “rules” by which the press has covered the Clintons for more than a quarter-century. The fact that many journalists approach the Clintons—especially Hillary Clinton—with a presumption that she has done something that if it’s not outright corrupt is at least worthy of looking into, inevitably colors the way the public views the former secretary of state, and the way they respond to her in the polls.

But the negative public perception of Mrs. Clinton often feels more visceral; almost primal, than something produced merely by bad press and polls. She is also a woman of a certain age, who has refused throughout her life to play by the Rules of Public People. She is a poor public speaker, who lacks the pleasing air of a more expert retail politician (though she is clearly wittier and more personable in small groups or one on one.) She refuses to be conventionally stylish. As first lady, she never evinced a flair for fashion or a knack for popular culture, the way Michelle Obama has or Nancy Reagan or Jackie Kennedy did; nor did she evoke the “momly” air of a Barbara Bush, or the quiet spousedom of Laura. And Clinton has never had the “good sense” to pretend she doesn’t actually want power, the way women are “supposed to.” Her assertive wonkiness and sometimes callous, sometimes tone deaf statements in defense of her husband or herself have even led some younger Americans to blame her even more than Bill Clinton for the policies of his administration.

Perhaps most importantly, Hillary Clinton has steadfastly refused to cultivate a relationship with the Washington press corps; there are no cute nicknames; no rides on the “straight talk express” and few uncontrolled encounters. She has, instead, made the rejection of the media, and the people who work in it, a feature of her public life. Her campaign has deployed a literal rope line to keep the press penned in and at bay. That incenses reporters, who feel entitled, on behalf of the public, to face time with the candidate. Indeed, it has been nearly 265 days since Clinton last held a press conference; though it’s not hard to anticipate how that would go.



Ted Cruz v. Rick Perry: The Trump connection to their potential Texas showdown for Senate

2 Texas GOPers who have benefited from both opposing and supporting Trump are now at odds


One of the most dramatic early moments during the primaries came from former Texas Gov. Rick Perry when he delivered a shocking, blistering speech about Donald Trump. It was only about a month into the race and the candidacy of Trump didn’t seem like a particular threat. But Trump was already hitting the immigration issue very hard and people were wondering how much damage he was going to do to the GOP.

Still fighting his battered image from 2008 when he blundered badly during a debate, Perry was polling only in the low single digits when he decided to confront Trump in July 2015. Until then, there had been a couple of tepid gestures from Sen. Lindsay Graham, who called Trump a “wrecking ball,” and former Sen. Rick Santorum, who mildly criticized “The Apprentice” star for his “verbiage.” And this was because of the dynamic that ended up making it possible for Trump to go all the way, namely that all the candidates assumed they needed to go easy on him because they hoped to inherit his voters when his ridiculous campaign inevitably blew up.

Perry decided to take a chance and separate himself from the pack by issuing a statement criticizing Trump’s border nonsense. He said, in part: “I have a message for my fellow Republicans and the independents who will be voting in the primary process: What Mr. Trump is offering is not conservatism, it is Trumpism – a toxic mix of demagoguery and nonsense.”

Trump was not amused and tweeted a tart response: “Governor Perry failed on the border. He should be forced to take an IQ test before being allowed to enter the GOP debate.” They traded increasingly hostile barbs about border security for a while, with Perry defending his record and knowledge of the issue and Trump responding by calling him stupid: “I see Rick Perry the other day. . . . He’s doing very poorly in the polls. He put on glasses so people will think he’s smart. And it just doesn’t work! You know people can see through the glasses!”



Clinton Receives Her First Security Briefing As The Democratic Nominee

Source: Talking Points Memo

Hillary Clinton has arrived at an FBI facility in White Plains, New York, for her first national security briefing as the Democratic presidential nominee.

The former secretary of state routinely received such briefings when she was in President Barack Obama's Cabinet.

But the briefing Saturday in suburban New York is her first since she became her party's nominee. Republican Donald Trump had his first briefing earlier this month.

The briefings have been customary for presidential nominees so the next commander in chief has an understanding of the country's national security apparatus.


Read more: http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/clinton-prepares-for-first-national-security-briefing

Trump: 'People Don't Know How Well We're Doing With Hispanics'

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump met with about two dozen Latino supporters in Nevada to discuss strategies for boosting Hispanic turnout in the swing state, part of his effort to make the case that his economic policies would be better for small minority-owned businesses than those of Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

"People don't know how well we're doing with the Hispanics, the Latinos," Trump said Friday at his hotel just off the Vegas Strip. "We're doing really well."

Trump has suggested that minorities have been left behind by Democratic economic policies and hammered the nation's sluggish GDP growth as "a catastrophe," saying that the United States has "some very, very serious problems and it's going to get worse with this group of people" in charge.

But Trump continued to send mixed signals about a key issue for many Latinos: immigration. While he has not wavered on his desire to build an impenetrable wall along the border with Mexico, he exhibited indecisiveness in recent days about his plan to deport 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.



Sanders to campaign for Clinton on Labor Day

Bernie Sanders will campaign on behalf of his one-time Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, on Labor Day. The New Hampshire AFL-CIO announced that the Vermont senator would speak at its Labor Day breakfast Monday in Manchester.

"At the breakfast, Senator Sanders will discuss the challenges facing working Americans and why we need to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour, enact paid family medical leave, oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership and create new jobs rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure," the group said in a statement.

"He also will talk about why he supports Hillary Clinton for President and Governor Maggie Hassan for the U.S. Senate and discuss their shared vision of how to build an economy that works for everyone — not just those at the top."

Hassan is facing incumbent Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R) in a toss-up race as Democrats look to regain control of the Senate.



GOP Fears Its Future in the West

“Republicans in Western states fear that Donald Trump could imperil their party for years to come in the country’s fastest-growing region as he repels a generation of Hispanics, Asians and younger voters who have been altering the electoral map,” the New York Times reports.

“Mr. Trump, with his insult-laden, culturally insensitive style of campaigning, is providing fuel for the demographic trends that are already reshaping the political composition of this once-heavily Republican territory. And now many Republicans are contemplating the possibility that states like Colorado or Nevada could soon become the next California: once competitive but now unwinnable in presidential contests.”

And this from Arizona: “Recent polls show Hillary Clinton is close to tying Mr. Trump here. And her campaign has responded by teaming up with local Democrats on a statewide get-out-the-vote operation, which has grown to 160 staff members across 20 offices.”


WaPo Editorial: Joe Arpaio, America’s scofflaw sheriff

By Editorial Board August 25

IN A democracy that prizes rule of law, calls to lock up public figures are jarring and usually out of place. But what to do if it’s a public figure such as Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the crusading racial profiler of Maricopa County, Ariz., who has spent the past several years systematically flouting a federal judge’s orders while hiding behind a smokescreen of obfuscation, manipulation and impunity?

In May, U.S. District Judge G. Murray Snow found Mr. Arpaio in contempt of court for willfully defying orders that his deputies halt their blatantly unconstitutional practice of detaining, arresting and harassing Latinos in traffic stops and workplace raids based on suspicions they are undocumented. The policy amounts to a race- and appearance-based enforcement regime that targets citizens, valid visa-holders and unauthorized immigrants alike. Heaven help anyone with olive skin who makes the mistake of driving in or around Maricopa County — including Phoenix, the county seat — population more than 4 million.

Confounded by the sheriff’s long-standing contempt for his lawful orders, Judge Snow last week threw up his hands. He referred Mr. Arpaio, who boasts he is “America’s toughest sheriff,” along with his top deputy, to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for criminal prosecution.

The judge, who was appointed to the bench by President George W. Bush, may have been within his rights to take action earlier. Mr. Arpaio has been subject to the court’s orders since 2013, when he lost a class action suit alleging that the sheriff’s office methodically targeted Hispanics in enforcement sweeps, on the assumption that they were undocumented — even if they had committed no crime warranting a stop. The sheriff and his second in command, Jerry Sheridan, “have a history of obfuscation and subversion of this court’s orders that is as old as this case,” the judge wrote in his order.



Trump and advisers remain split on how far to move toward the middle

By Jenna Johnson and Robert Costa August 26 at 8:50 PM

Ten days after he appointed new campaign leadership, Donald Trump and many of his closest aides and allies remain divided on whether to adopt more mainstream stances or stick with the hard-line conservative positions at the core of his candidacy, according to people involved in the discussions.

Trump has been flooded with conflicting advice about where to land, with the tensions vividly illustrated this week as the GOP nominee publicly wrestled with himself on the details of his signature issue: immigration. A particular flash point has been whether to forcibly deport an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants from the country, a move Trump long advocated but is now reconsidering.

“He has been listening to a wide range of opinions on that,” said former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, who has been at Trump’s side nearly constantly over the past week. “As you might imagine, there are different opinions on this, even in his campaign. In a very thoughtful way, he’s trying to figure what the right position is.”

“By the way,” Giuliani added, “that’s what everybody criticized him for in the past: that he’s not able to do that. He actually is able to do that.”



Federal Court Rules N. Carolina’s Anti-Trans “Bathroom Bill” Unconstitutional

In a huge blow to anti-LGBT conservatives across the country, a federal court has just ruled that North Carolina’s discriminatory anti-transgender “bathroom” law, HB 2, is unconstitutional on the grounds that it violates Title IX of the Education Amendments to the Civil Rights Act.

HB 2 “directs all public schools, government agencies and public college campuses to require that multiple-occupancy bathrooms and changing facilities, such as locker rooms, be designated for use only by people based on their “biological sex” stated on their birth certificate,” specifically targeting transgender Americans from not using bathrooms that don’t correspond to their “biological sex,” thus mounting an existential refutation of the idea of gender fluidity and helping to propagate a dangerous myth that transgender Americans are simply pretending to have different genders in order to sexually assault women and children.

US District Court Judge Thomas Schroeder noted, “Ultimately, the record reflects what counsel for Governor McCrory candidly speculates was the status quo ante in North Carolina in recent years: some transgender individuals have been quietly using bathrooms and other facilities that match their gender identity, without public awareness or incident. Accordingly, the court will enjoin UNC from enforcing Part I against the individual transgender Plaintiffs until the court reaches a final decision on the merits in this case.”

HB 2 has triggered a firestorm of condemnation around the country, prompting the NBA to move it’s All-Star game out of the state and a host of other business to pull their dollars from the state. Governor Pat McCrory has stubbornly stuck by his discriminatory laws, to the point where he’s in real danger of losing his seat – and many voters say it’s this hateful bills that’s hurting him. If this injunction stands, it will be a huge blow to right-wing religious anti-gay extremism and a decisive win for tolerance in the United States.




Federal Judge Blocks Portions of North Carolina’s Anti-LGBTQ Law

On Friday, U.S. District Judge Thomas D. Schroeder ruled on the legality of North Carolina’s HB2, a wide-reaching anti-LGBTQ law. The result is a partial success for HB2’s critics—especially with regard to HB2’s requirement that universities discriminate against transgender students and employees. But the ruling also suggests that Schroeder, a George W. Bush appointee, is skeptical of the plaintiffs’ broader claims about HB2’s unconstitutionality. The upshot is that HB2’s legal opponents have a fair amount to celebrate—and a lot more work to do.

Schroeder rendered a judgment on two central challenges to the North Carolina law: First, that it violates federal law; and second, that it violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. The Department of Education currently interprets Title IX’s ban on “sex discrimination” to encompass anti-trans discrimination, including the exclusion of trans people from the bathroom that aligns with their gender identity. Through this interpretation, the DOE has found that federally funded schools may not prevent trans people from using their preferred bathroom. Yet HB2 explicitly prevented trans people from using the bathroom at school unless they altered their birth certificate, which is impossible in some states.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit has affirmed the legitimacy of the DOE’s interpretation of Title IX. As a district court judge within the 4th Circuit, Schroeder is bound by that determination. Thus, he adhered to it in his ruling, holding that HB2 cannot be used to prevent trans university students from using the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. This judgment is, in itself, a considerable victory against HB2. The law applied only to government buildings, and a huge proportion of government buildings are located on university campuses. Schroeder’s decision further solidifies the widespread sentiment that HB2 represented an unjustifiable interference into higher education.

But Schroeder’s ruling on the equal protection challenge was vastly more favorable to the state. Schroeder found, correctly, that HB2—which categorizes citizens based on their “biological sex”—constitutes sex discrimination, requiring intermediate scrutiny. He explains that this standard requires HB2 to be “substantially related to an important government interest,” or it violates the Equal Protection Clause. Schroeder concludes that “protection of bodily privacy is an important government interest,” satisfying the test’s first prong. He then writes that the question of whether HB2 is “substantially related” to that interest requires him to decide whether “sex” means “physiological differences between men and women” or “differences in gender identity.”

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