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Jose Garcia

Jose Garcia's Journal
Jose Garcia's Journal
September 24, 2020

Prosecutors drop charges against Patriots owner Robert Kraft after cops bungled sex sting


Florida prosecutors on Thursday dropped all criminal charges against New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, ending a flawed case that began with a police prostitution sting using secret video cameras at a Palm Beach County massage parlor early last year.

State Attorney Dave Aronberg is scheduled to explain the decision during a 2:30 p.m. news briefing.

Last month, a state appellate court sided with Kraft’s arguments that Jupiter police unlawfully recorded the part-time Palm Beach resident with his clothes off at Orchids of Asia Day Spa on Jan. 19, 2019, and Jan. 20, 2019.

In charging Kraft, prosecutors said he paid in cash and then got naked for sex acts. The videotaping at the business lasted for five days, leading to the solicitation of prostitution charges against Kraft, 79, and 24 other men.

Read more: https://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/palm-beach/fl-ne-robert-kraft-prostitution-charges-dropped-20200924-ukbylfdmojhz3p7jdaxmftq5vi-story.html

This was a ridiculous waste of tax dollars.
September 10, 2020

University of Michigan-Dearborn apologizes for segregated online "cafes"

Source: CBS News

The University of Michigan-Dearborn issued an apology Wednesday for creating segregated online student "cafes," one for White people and another for people of color, that it says were intended to promote discussions about race and diversity. A statement by the university near Detroit came after two virtual "cafe" events were held Tuesday, with one advertised as a "non-POC Cafe" for non-people of color to "gather and discuss their experience as students on campus and as non-POC in the world."

The other, dubbed "BIOPIC Cafe" was for Black, Indigenous and People of Color, and described as a space for "marginalized racial/ethnic/cultural communities to gather and to relate with one another to discuss their experience as students on campus'' and in the world.

Abed Ayoub, legal and policy director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, said he understood the intention but "it could have been done better, obviously."

Ayoub said such spaces are created for students of color who have experienced racism to safely share their experiences. He added it's important that White students hear and learn from the experiences of students of color in these discussions.

Read more: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/university-of-michigan-dearborn-apologizes-segregated-online-cafes/

September 9, 2020

Biden pick creates furor, underscoring bitterness over Obama immigration policy

Immigration advocates are livid over the Biden transition team’s addition of Cecilia Muñoz, a former Obama administration official who was the public face of that administration’s immigration policy.

Muñoz, who once served as the head of former President Obama’s White House Domestic Policy Council, was named by the Biden campaign Friday as part of a group of eight new senior transition advisers.

The pick was quickly criticized by immigration reform advocates, a reaction that exhibited both ideological divides within the Democratic Party and a lingering resentment felt by many immigration advocates over the actions of the Obama administration, particularly in its first term.

“Huge mistake. Huge. Huge mistake. Worst part? We have no other option. I guess we gotta pick our opponent. That’s what it has come down to,” wrote Erika Andiola, an immigrant rights activist and advocacy director for The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services.

more: https://thehill.com/policy/515581-biden-pick-creates-furor-underscoring-bitterness-over-obama-immigration-policy

August 31, 2020

Man under investigation in fatal shooting after pro-Trump rally allegedly took loaded gun to earlier

Source: The Oregonian/OregonLive

A 48-year-old man who was accused of carrying a loaded gun at an earlier downtown Portland protest is under investigation in the fatal shooting Saturday night of a right-wing demonstrator after a pro-Trump rally.

Michael Forest Reinoehl calls himself an anti-fascist and has posted videos and photos of demonstrations he attended since late June, accompanied by the hashtags #blacklivesmatter, #anewnation and #breonnataylor.

Reinoehl was raised in Sandy and has had recent addresses in Northeast Portland, Gresham and Clackamas. He described himself on social media and in a video interview with Bloomberg QuickTake News as a professional snowboarder and contractor who has former military experience but “hated” his time in the army.

Sources familiar with the case but not authorized to speak said police are investigating Reinoehl. A family member also identified him as a man captured in photos and video seen leaving the shooting scene shortly before 9 p.m. Saturday.

Read more: https://www.oregonlive.com/crime/2020/08/man-under-investigation-in-fatal-shooting-after-pro-trump-rally-allegedly-took-loaded-gun-to-earlier-portland-protest.html

August 13, 2020

President Trump says UAE to open diplomatic ties with Israel

Source: Associated Press

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — President Donald Trump said on Thursday that the United Arab Emirates and Israel have agreed to establish full diplomatic ties as part of a deal to halt the annexation of occupied land sought by the Palestinians for their future state.

The announcement makes the UAE the first Gulf Arab state to do so and only the third Arab nation to have active diplomatic ties to Israel.

Trump tweeted a statement from the countries, acknowledging the deal. He then told reporters in the Oval Office that it was “a truly historic moment.”

“Now that the ice has been broken I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates,” he said.

Read more: https://apnews.com/abcb0ed9a84e2d3da7d87c28641ccc21?utm_medium=AP&utm_source=Twitter&utm_campaign=SocialFlow

August 7, 2020

Biden Bucks Progressives, Won't Denounce Israeli Occupation

In early July, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and other influential progressives were convinced that they had secured a critical concession from Joe Biden’s campaign: For the first time, the Democratic Party platform would assert that Palestinians had a right to live free of foreign “occupation,” a scarcely veiled reference to Israel.

But days before a draft platform was released on July 15, the presumptive Democratic nominee personally weighed in, according to three sources familiar with the discussion, ordering his advisors not to include any reference to Israeli “occupation.” The decision, according to these sources, followed heavy last-minute lobbying by pro-Israel advocacy groups. Biden aides subsequently phoned progressive leaders and urged them to drop their demand to declare Israel an occupying power, arguing that the inclusion of the phrase threatened to undermine unity within the Democratic Party.

“The question of whether to allow the text to refer to ‘occupation’ or use the phrase ‘end the occupation’ was taken to the vice president and he said ‘no,’” Jason Isaacson, the chief policy and political affairs officer at the American Jewish Committee, told Foreign Policy. “This is not an issue on which the party can bend because it would be contrary to the position of Joe Biden.”

The retreat reflected the reluctance of the former vice president to reverse decades of staunch support for Israel, even as Biden and his party are expressing growing support for reestablishing diplomatic ties with the Palestinians and reinforcing the need to pay greater heed to Palestinian rights. It also marked something of a victory for the party’s establishment, which has sought to preserve close relations with Israel, even as its prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has moved increasingly close to the Republican Party and its standard-bearer, President Donald Trump.

more: https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/08/06/biden-2020-presidential-election-israel-occupation-progressives-sanders/

August 4, 2020

Karen Bass eulogized Communist Party USA leader

Source: Politico

When Rep. Karen Bass’s “friend and mentor” died three years ago, she eulogized the community organizer’s passing in remarks she inserted into the Congressional Record.

The California congresswoman described Oneil Marion Cannon as a one-man force in progressive politics who became the “union printer to the left” in Los Angeles, where he worked for “interracial and intercultural understanding,” opened a community hub and even once “belonged to the Independent Progressive Party.”

Left out of the 406-word eulogy: Cannon was a top member of the Communist Party USA for decades.

That omitted detail and her little-noticed 2017 eulogy today takes on outsized importance now that Bass is on Joe Biden’s VP shortlist. As quickly as the congresswoman and former speaker of the California state Assembly shot into serious contention for Biden’s No. 2, she has come under intense scrutiny, prompting questions about whether Biden would be risking too much by selecting a politician just now coming under the glare of the national spotlight.

Read more: https://www.politico.com/amp/news/2020/08/04/karen-bass-eulogized-communist-party-usa-leader-391455?__twitter_impression=true

July 27, 2020

Trump national security adviser O'Brien tests positive for coronavirus

Source: Reuters

WASHINGTON, July 27 (Reuters) - U.S. national security adviser Robert O'Brien has become the highest ranking official in President Donald Trump's inner circle to test positive for the coronavirus.

Announcing the infection on Monday, the White House said in a statement there was no risk of exposure to Trump or Vice President Mike Pence.

The announcement caught some White House staff off guard, as there had not been an internal memo about it, one source said. Because of the regular testing regimen, White House officials do not reliably wear masks while working in the West Wing.

An administration official said O'Brien had not had contact with the president in several days. The National Security Council did not immediately respond to questions about O'Brien, who was working from home.

Read more: https://news.trust.org/item/20200727140344-dkmrl

I guess that you-know-who is going to have to up his dosage of hydroxychloroquine.
July 27, 2020

Palm Beach County's mask rules are constitutional, judge rules


Palm Beach County’s mask rules are constitutional, a judge said Monday.

Circuit Judge John Kastrenakes said that requiring a mask in some places is within the county’s rights to protect the general public during a deadly pandemic and that those who challenged the mandate failed to show that any constitutional rights were violated.

“The right to be ‘free from governmental intrusion’ does not automatically or completely shield an individual’s conduct from regulation,” Kastrenakes wrote in his order.

Four county residents who filed a lawsuit on June 30 said that being forced to wear masks infringes on their constitutional rights to free speech and privacy, which lawyers and legal experts disputed.

Read more: https://www.sun-sentinel.com/coronavirus/fl-ne-palm-beach-county-court-denies-mask-lawsuit-20200727-vewnsi2p3rb35du55zrzjtklie-story.html

July 21, 2020

Trump aims to bar undocumented immigrants from counting toward House representation

Source: The Hill

President Trump on Tuesday issued an executive order that blocks undocumented immigrants from being counted in the 2020 census for the purpose of allocating congressional representation.

The order, which immediately prompted legal challenges, amounts to something of a workaround for Trump after the Supreme Court last year blocked the administration from adding a citizenship question to the decennial survey.

The rationale for the memo rests on the argument that the president has final say over transmitting the final census report to Congress and that the constitution does not explicitly define which persons must be included in determining apportionment.

"The discretion delegated to the executive branch to determine who qualifies as an 'inhabitant' includes authority to exclude from the apportionment base aliens who are not in a lawful immigration status," the order states. "Excluding these illegal aliens from the apportionment base is more consonant with the principles of representative democracy underpinning our system of Government.

Read more: https://thehill.com/latino/508314-trump-aims-to-bar-undocumented-immigrants-from-counting-toward-house-representation

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