In the News

News and Headlines. 5/7/2019


News and Headlines: In The News, Politics, World News, Commentary/Opinion.

In The News:


Donald Trump Pardons Army Lieutenant Michael Behenna


AP Photo/Vanessa Gera

Trump’s pardon came just days after Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter sent a letter to Trump requesting a pardon for Behenna.

“Mr. Behenna’s case has attracted broad support from the military, Oklahoma elected officials, and the public,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement to reporters, noting that 37 military generals and admirals and a former Inspector General of the Department of Defense signed a brief in support of Mr. Behenna’s claim.


Injuries reported, ‘unstable situation, shots fired’ at Colorado school, sheriff says

Two people were thought to be injured in the incident that took place “at STEM school at Ridgeline and Plaza,” the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office tweeted.

Authorities responded at 1:53 p.m. local time for a “call of shots fired in school” and deputies are actively working on “identifying and locating shooter(s),” they later added.

Authorities urged the public to avoid the area.

Multiple units from the South Metro Fire Rescue reported to the scene to help, the agency said on Twitter.


Colorado school shooting leaves at least 7 injured, 2 in custody, sheriff’s office says

It’s possible that a third suspect remains in STEM School Highlands Ranch, which is still being searched, Douglas County Undersheriff Holly Nicholson-Kluth said at a news conference.

Some students remained in the school and authorities were working to evacuate the elementary school, Nicholson-Kluth said.

The sheriff’s department later tweeted that “7 possibly 8 students have been injured.” Those who were hurt were taken to a local hospital, Nicholson-Kluth said.

Officials provide an update on the shooting at a Colorado school that left at least seven people injured and at least two suspects in custody.


POLICE CATCH MAN WHO ALLEGEDLY SHOT, KILLED MISSISSIPPI POLICE OFFICER

Authorities arrested Darian Tawan Atkinson, 19, Monday night and charged him with shooting Biloxi officer John McKeithen in the department’s own police station parking lot, The Associated Press reported Tuesday.

“Next we want to make sure that we have a solid case,” Miller said. “We want the district attorney to be pleased with the case we present, and we want this guy to pay for what he’s done.”

McKeithen served in the Air Force and was a 23-year veteran on the Biloxi police force.


Indianapolis police arrest 2 men in connection with 2 judges shot in parking lot of fast-food restaurant


Clark County Judges Brad Jacobs and Andrew Adams. (Indiana Supreme Court)

Police said Tuesday that detectives arrested 41-year-old Brandon Kaiser and 23-year-old Alfredo Vazquez for alleged roles in the shootings of Clark Circuit Judges Bradley Jacobs and Andrew Adams last Wednesday.

Police have said they’ve found no evidence to suggest the judges — both are hospitalized in stable condition — were targeted because of their occupations in the justice system.

Marion County Jail records shown Kaiser faces preliminary charges of attempted murder, battery, aggravated battery and carrying a handgun without a license, and Vazquez is charged with assisting a criminal.


Pastor and His Wife Shoot Alleged Home Intruder Dead

A preliminary investigation revealed the residents were asleep in their bed when they were awakened by a loud noise.

While investigating the cause of the noise, they noticed their backyard gate was opened and saw a male (suspect) in their back yard.

The suspect then forced his way and gained entry into the residence.

The residents, in fear for their lives, discharged their firearms several times, striking the suspect.

UNC Student Attacks Pro-Life Demonstrator

A woman allegedly punched a pro-life group’s intern at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


Abortion Clinic Kills 20-Week-Old Twin Babies in Dismemberment Abortion Tearing Off Their Limbs

“This was a high-risk abortion of two innocent babies that went terribly wrong. These babies deserved to live as much as anyone, yet, killing them almost cost the mother’s life as well,” said Operation Rescue’s Troy Newman.

“She is lucky to be alive today. Her babies were not so lucky. It’ tragic.”

According to 911 records obtained by Operation Rescue, when EMS arrived, the patient, a 27-year old African-American woman, was laying on the abortion table still bleeding. She was breathing and alert.


Sister of Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, Tim Tebow’s fiance, died suddenly at 13

Nel-Peters’ 13-year-old sister, Franje, who brought the couple together through Tebow’s “Night to Shine,” which celebrates people with special needs, died suddenly on Saturday after battling an extremely rare lifelong condition called cerebellar agenesis, according to the South African.

Franje was born without a cerebellum, severely limiting her motor functions, or the ability to walk, talk, and develop as a child.


GENE SIMMONS: BDS CAN KISS MY TUCHUS

Eurovision is the world’s largest non-sporting televised event, in which each of 41 countries enter a song and compete over three rounds.

The country that wins in any given year becomes the host the following year (Israeli singer Netta won last year for her song “Toy”).

Advocates of the “Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions” (BDS) movement have called on broadcasters to refuse to televise the event, but none have agreed to drop the highly rated program.

BDS aims to isolate and delegitimize Israel through non-violent means. It has been criticized for holding Israel to an unfair standard not faced by any other country in the world.


Attention, pet owners: Walmart will see your furry friend now

The moves have Walmart competing with PetSmart’s online business, Chewy.com, which also has an online pharmacy. Chewy.com recent filed papers with regulators to ready for an initial public offering.

Millennial dog owners spend as much as $1,285 a year on their four-footed friends, with the majority of that going toward vet care and vaccinations, food and supplies, Walmart said in a blog post, which cited TD Ameritrade for the estimate.

Americans are pampering their pets more than ever, and will spend $75 billion on their animals this year, the American Pet Product Association estimates.


Ratings-challenged CNN sheds staff as network moves into lavish new digs

Cable news watchdog Scott Jones – who first broke the news of Maddox departing CNN on Monday – reported that CNN executives are looking to trim roughly 300 jobs and layoffs are expected if more employees don’t accept the voluntary buyout.

Bureau chiefs and award winners are among the staffers accepting the buyout offer, according to TVNewser.

Rank-and-file employees have indicated to Fox News that they’re unaware if layoffs will follow the buyout, while one staffer said the move to a shiny new address has been a welcomed distraction.


Director Nick Searcy Wins ‘Best Director’ At Pro Life Film Fest for ‘Gosnell’

In addition to directing Gosnell, Searcy also has quite a few acting credits to his name, having had roles in recent big budget projects such as Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water and the recent TV reboot of Lethal Weapon.

Gosnell, which stars conservative Hollywood actor Dean Cain, actress Sarah Jane Morris, and Earl Billings as the titular abortion doctor, has enjoyed decent critical success, and has received high marks from audiences.

The film generated so much positive pro-life buzz that it was shown at the White House in April, making it — according to Slate — the “first politically controversial movie to be screened at Trump’s White House.”


Border Patrol Busts Illegal Immigrant Who Allegedly Paid $130 To Rent 8-Year-Old To Pose as His Son

The Arizona Daily Star reported Maynor Velasquez Molina crossed the border with the boy at Lukeville, about 150 miles southwest of Phoenix, on Feb. 18.

“Velasquez showed Border Patrol agents a Guatemalan birth certificate to prove the boy was his son, but four days later agents determined the claim was false,” according to the Daily Star.

Molina’s case is not an isolated incident. From October to March, there were hundreds in the Yuma sector near the Arizona-California border, according to the Daily Star.

Politics:


MORE WOMEN DONATED TO TRUMP CAMPAIGN IN FIRST QUARTER THAN ANY 2020 DEMOCRAT

10,375 women have donated to Trump in the first quarter of 2020, more than double the nearest Democratic challenger. California Sen. Kamala Harris had the second highest number of female donors with 3,850.

Trump’s average donation per woman donor is also much lower than his top female opponents.

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s average donation was $1,321, and Sen. Harris’s average was $935 per woman respectively, while Trump’s donors average out to $141.

The data, compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, uses publicly available contribution information from the Federal Elections Commission (FEC).

Individual donors are only itemized with the FEC once they reach at least $200 in donations to a particular candidate.


TOM COTTON HITS WHITE HOUSE FOR PLAN TO DOLE OUT AN ADDITIONAL 30,000 TEMPORARY WORKER VISAS

“Our immigration system should prioritize the needs of U.S. citizens over cheap foreign labor.

Allowing an additional 30,000 seasonal workers into the country forces Americans to compete for jobs against non-citizens who drag down wages,” Cotton said in a Monday statement.

The seasonal visas are intended to bring in people who perform jobs that don’t typically attract American workers.

White House officials cautioned that the foreign nationals — all of whom would be returning workers — will go through a background check and are trusted not to remain in the U.S. past their visa due date.


Trump campaign accuses Pelosi of ‘warrantless fear mongering’ with 2020 election warning

“That’s ridiculous and nothing more than warrantless fear mongering to rile up her fringe base and the media,” Tim Murtaugh, Trump’s 2020 communications director, said in a statement.

Murtaugh said Pelosi “might want to check in with Hillary Clinton and other Democrats who actually did lose, but still won’t accept the will of the voters in the presidential election of 2016 and governors races in Florida and Georgia in 2018.”

“There’s where the real denial is,” he said.


Rep. Ilhan Omar Supports Group That Produced Child Beheading Skit

Chicago Tribune investigative report revealed that MAS had been founded by Muslim Brotherhood leaders, adopted the group’s strict code for secrecy, and promoted Islamic supremacy.

The article interviewed one former MAS member who explained the group’s vision for Islamic rule in America:

“It would convert Americans to Islam and elect like-minded Muslims to political office.

” Even more shocking is that freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar (D–MN), of other recent controversies, has openly supported MAS.

In fact, Omar’s support for MAS goes back years.

Her deep ties to the group were on display when she had the MAS-Minnesota chapter Oresident Asad Zaman stand with her as she was ceremonially sworn into the Minnesota House of Representatives in January 2017 with her hand on an enormous Quran.

MAS held a reception in honor of her inauguration.


Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema Defies Colleagues by Posting Pro-Israeli Tweet

“I condemn the rocket attacks on innocent civilians and stand in support of Israel and peace,” Sinema wrote in a tweet late Sunday evening.

The freshman senator’s statement came after an estimated 600 rockets were fired on Israel from Gaza over the past weekend, killing four civilians — including one American citizen, The Associated Press reported.

Largely unsupportive of Israel, prominent congressional Democrats were quick to place blame on the nation for the violent weekend.

Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib, freshman Democrats from Minnesota and Michigan respectively, both issued tweets Sunday condemning Israel for its response.

N.Y. assemblyman blasts 2020 Democrats for apparent silence on Israel attacks

In the days after Hamas launched more than 600 rockets into Israel, reports say not a single Democrat running for president in 2020 has commented on the attack or offered their support for America’s strongest ally in the region.

This has outraged some Jewish Americans, including some fellow Democrats.

One America’s Ryan Girdusky sat down with a former New York assemblyman, who slammed the Democrat silence.

John Solomon: FBI Played ‘Political Dirty Trick’ on Donald Trump over Alleged Russia Collusion

John Solomon is an award winning investigative journalist and the Executive VP at The Hill who has written extensively on alleged Trump/Russia collusion.


Steele’s stunning pre-FISA confession: Informant needed to air Trump dirt before election

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kathleen Kavalec’s written account of her Oct. 11, 2016, meeting with FBI informant Christopher Steele shows the Hillary Clinton campaign-funded British intelligence operative admitted that his research was political and facing an Election Day deadline.

Steele’s client “is keen to see this information come to light prior to November 8,” the date of the 2016 election, Kavalec wrote in a typed summary of her meeting with Steele and Tatyana Duran, a colleague from Steele’s Orbis Security firm.

The memos were unearthed a few days ago through open-records litigation by the conservative group Citizens United.

Kavalec’s notes do not appear to have been provided to the House Intelligence Committee during its Russia probe, according to former Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.).

“They tried to hide a lot of documents from us during our investigation, and it usually turns out there’s a reason for it,” Nunes told me.

Senate and House Judiciary investigators told me they did not know about them, even though they investigated Steele’s behavior in 2017-18.

Senator Harris Misses Huge Revelation From Barr During Senate Testimony

In an amazing exchange during testimony before the United States Senate on May 1, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) badgered Attorney General William Barr by demanding to know why he hasn’t recused himself yet from having any involvement with the Mueller Special Counsel or any of the referred criminal cases that sprang from it.

When that line of attack failed, Harris turned to repeatedly demanding an answer to the same recusal question about soon-to-depart Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.


PETE BUTTIGIEG SAYS AMERICA WAS NEVER THAT GREAT

Buttigieg argued that Trump’s message has never been advisable nor feasible “when that past that he is promising to return us to was never as great as advertised, especially for marginalized Americans. And there’s no going back anyway.”

Buttigieg has also alienated some voters by reversing himself on the Black Lives Matter controversy, having said in 2015 that “all lives matter.”


AOC reportedly in talks to do another documentary — this time it’s on the Green New Deal

Ocasio-Cortez started talking about the project with Rachel Lears, the same producer behind “Knock Down the House,” which followed the freshman congresswoman during her initial run against former Rep. Joe Crowley, D-N.Y.

The new film, according to Axios, would follow Ocasio-Cortez in her fight to push the Green New Deal, a highly controversial series of policies that she portrayed as a way to combat climate change.

Lears would make the film but could work with a company other than Netflix, which helped bring in $10 million when it published “Knock Down the House” on its streaming platform.


MAYOR PETE SAYS GOD SHOULDN’T BE A POLITICAL WEAPON — THEN USES HIM AS ONE

People immediately began to call out “Mayor Pete” for doing exactly what he had just argued against doing.

The Resurgent’s Erick Erickson agreed with Buttigieg that God would not be a Republican — but he argued that was because God is not a political being.

“Buttigieg is right,” Erickson explained. “God couldn’t be a Republican. He couldn’t be a Democrat either.

He’s God. One day every knee will bow to Him. He will never bow to us. And He will judge His church for bowing to popular culture in defiance of His commandments.”


PA Democrat Rep. Brian Sims Offers Planned Parenthood Donation for Identities of Pro-Life Teens

Sims, the first openly gay Pennsylvania lawmaker, posted the video of himself on Facebook on April 18 as he asked for help identifying the pro-life teens in exchange for his $100 donation to Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania:

Sims posted another video of himself last week as he harassed and berated a woman he called an “old white lady” as she prayed the rosary outside Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania.


Abortions after six weeks will now be illegal in Georgia

“Georgia is a state that values life,” Kemp said at the bill signing on Tuesday morning. “We protect the innocent, we champion the vulnerable, we stand up and speak for those that are unable to speak for themselves.”

State Rep. Ed Setzler also spoke at the bill signing on Tuesday and called the legislation a “common sense issue,” saying that a preschooler would call a six-week-old embryo a baby.

He also said the legislation “tries to strike a balance” between “the interest of women who find themselves in difficult circumstances” and what he called “the right thing.”


JOHN ROGERS ANNOUNCES SENATE BID AFTER ‘KILL THEM NOW, KILL THEM LATER’ ABORTION COMMENTS

Rogers also clarified his thoughts on abortion-related issues, reportedly telling the Alabama House a miscarriage is a “natural abortion,” morning-after pills are the same as abortion, and sonograms are intended to track a woman’s pregnancy in order for her to be informed on whether she would like to terminate it, according to Yellowhammer News.

“Some kids are unwanted, so you kill them now or you kill them later,” Rogers said during a debate on a state abortion bill May 1.

“You bring them in the world unwanted, unloved, you send them to the electric chair. So, you kill them now or you kill them later.”

“Doug Jones and John Rogers share the same views on abortion, but Rogers is at least honest about it,” said National Republican Senatorial Committee spokesman Nathan Brand in a statement to TheDCNF.

“Even Alabama Democrats are taking note of how dishonest Doug Jones is.”


‘Can I just touch????’: Tennessee House speaker trades sexually-charged texts with chief of staff

The Tennessean revealed Monday that Republican Rep. Glen Casada’s now former chief of staff Cade Cothren, 32, had a history of making inappropriate advances toward interns, sending lewd text messages, and used cocaine in the legislative office building.

The text messages uncovered span from 2014 to 2016 when Cothren was serving as House Republicans’ press secretary.

Some of those messages were sent to Casada, who has not resigned as a result of the scandal.

World News:


Pompeo makes unannounced visit to Baghdad amid rising tensions with Iran

The surprise visit came after Pompeo abruptly canceled a visit to Germany, where he was scheduled to meet with Chancellor Angela Merkel and Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.

The State Department initially said only that the change was because of “pressing issues” that had arisen.

Adding to the secrecy surrounding the visit, the handful of reporters traveling with Pompeo were not immediately told where they were going and warned they might not be able to file reports from the mystery location until after departure.


Report: Iran Prepares to Withdraw From Parts of Nuclear Deal


FILE – This Feb. 14, 2012, file photo shows the bridge of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). The U.S. is dispatching the USS Abraham Lincoln and other military resources to the Middle East following “clear indications” that Iran and its proxy forces were preparing to possibly attack U.S. forces in the region, according to a defense official on May 5, 2019. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar, File) 

The terms of the withdrawal remain unclear, though the IRNA news agency said President Hassan Rouhani will explain Iran’s decision in letters to leaders of Britain, France and Germany that will be handed to ambassadors in Tehran.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif separately will write to the European Union, the agency said.

The semi-official ISNA news agency reported late Tuesday that Zarif had left for Moscow to meet with Russian leader Vladimir Putin to discuss bilateral and international issues, without elaborating.

Details of the letters, all to signers of the 2015 accord, will not be publicly disclosed, it said.

The letters will come as officials in the Islamic Republic previously warned that Iran might increase its uranium enrichment, potentially pulling away from a deal it has sought to salvage for months.


US Marine among activists charged with storming North Korean embassy in Spain as video released


U.S. Marine Christopher Ahn may be extradited to face charges.
 (Provisional Government of Free Joseon)

The two dissidents, 37-year-old U.S. Marine Christopher Ahn and noted human rights activist Adrian Hong, are members of the North Korean resistance group Free Joseon, or “Free North Korea.”

They are calling for the downfall of Kim Jong Un’s regime and consider themselves the “Provisional government of Free Joseon.”

But now, the U.S. is seeking to extradite the two to face charges in Madrid.

Fox News obtained video purporting to show an activist removing the official portraits of Kim Jong Un and his father, Kim Jong Il, from the embassy wall.

The activist then smashed the portraits on the floor, breaking the glass into pieces as it hit. That would be an unthinkable act in North Korea.

Brazil’s Bolsonaro signs decree easing gun laws


Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro speaks to the press after signing a second decree that eases gun restrictions, at the Planalto presidential palace in Brasilia, Brazil, Tuesday, May 7, 2019. (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)

The decree opens Brazil to guns and ammunition made outside the South American country, according to a summary of the decree.

Gun owners can now buy between 1,000 and 5,000 rounds of ammunition per year depending on their license, up from 50 rounds. Lower-ranking military members can now carry guns after 10 years of service.

To own a gun in Brazil, citizens must pass a series of requirements including a psychological screening and a safety course.

Commentary/Opinion:


James Comey is in trouble and he knows it

Barr has made plain that he intends to examine carefully how and why Comey, as FBI director, decided that the bureau should investigate two presidential campaigns and if, in so doing, any rules or laws were broken.

In light of this, the fired former FBI director apparently has decided that photos of him on Twitter standing amid tall trees and in the middle of empty country roads, acting all metaphysical, is no longer a sufficient strategy.

No, Comey has realized, probably too late, that he has to try to counter, more directly, the narrative being set by the unsparing attorney general whose words in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee last week landed in the Trump-opposition world like holy water on Linda Blair. Shrieking heads haven’t stopped spinning since.


How Legacy News Outlets and Political Actors Maintain Their Illusion of Chaos

The narratives used to discredit Trump have been debunked one after the next.

Criticisms of “antisemitism” were turned around to expose antisemitism among leftist politicians and news outlets, the “Trump-Russia” scandal has transformed into the “Spygate” scandal of political espionage under Obama, and many other accusations have ended with similar results.

In the latest chapter of these chaos operations, House Democrats are voting to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress for his refusal to not release the fully unredacted report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Barr was not required to release even the information he did, and cannot release the redacted parts because they relate to grand jury information on ongoing cases.

But what’s important to remember here is that none of this matters.

This is not about Barr, or about the Mueller report, or about foreign influence in the elections.


How Media Narratives Became More Important Than Facts

The effort to expose flaws and conflicts in media reporting is growing stronger, not weaker, despite the narratives.

The desire to affect improvements is building. Make no mistake: Not all of us are free to speak publicly, but there are a lot of us. And we aren’t going away.

Some reporters lack the self-awareness and objectivity to understand they are revealing themselves when they selectively apply labels in a one-sided fashion.

They are servicing a narrative, even if unintentionally.

Lara Logan, who recently left CBS News, has also been speaking out about her observations regarding the decline of fair and objective journalism.

She’s likewise been attacking the narratives. As such, she has been subjected to them. That’s how it works.

Obviously (says the narrative), she is a disgruntled conservative who is not to be believed. Or (says the narrative), she’s perhaps a little unbalanced. (You know, all that war reporting and stress. Poor Lara.)

The truth is, Lara is extremely clear-eyed on these issues. And she and I are far from alone in our views on the state of the media.

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