In the News

News and Headlines. 6/11/2018

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

In The News:

Colorado Christian cakeshop sued a third time for discrimination

Jack Phillips,The owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop
Jack Phillips,The owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop

Jack Phillips, the Lakewood, Colo. bakery owner who has refused to bake cakes that violate his Christian faith, is being sued again by Autumn Scardina, a transgender woman, for refusing to bake a gender transition cake.

Scardina claims it is textbook LGBT discrimination. But Phillips said she is rehashing old claims that hold no merit.

1,700 people arrested by the Justice Department for child porn and child sexual abuse crimes

Prosecutors said they identified more than 300 people suspected of producing child pornography or committing sexual abuse involving children.

The investigation, nicknamed “Broken Heart,” was conducted in April and May. Officials said they investigated more than 18,500 complaints of crimes against children.

Attorney General William Barr vowed to bring “the full force of the law against sexual predators.”

Off-duty Chicago officer charged in crash that killed woman sitting inside restaurant

Bond set at $40,000 for Terrance Finley, CPD officer charged in DUI reckless homicide crash over the weekend

Terrance Finley, 24, faces one felony count of reckless homicide with a motor vehicle and one of aggravated driving under the influence. Finley is also accused of a misdemeanor count of DUI and was cited for failing to reduce speed.

Finley, who was off-duty, crashed into Tony’s Philly Steak in the 1700 block of West 87th Street around 2:25 a.m. Sunday.

Marquita Reed, 34, was sitting at a table inside the restaurant at the time of the crash, and was pinned under the car. She was transported to Advocate Christ Medical Center, where she was later pronounced dead.

Oklahoma mother was murdered in front of her five children, police say

Selena Escalera-Pacheco
Selena Escalera-Pacheco

A friend found the body of Selena Escalera-Pacheco in the bedroom of one of Pacheco’s five children. Police said they watched in horror while their mother was murdered right in front of them.

“That’s the worst thing that could happen,” Italia Nunez said. “Those kids are going to be traumatized for life.”

Pacheco’s friends said her life was just beginning and told KFOR she had only recently moved into the apartment. They said she had just ended a bad relationship and believe her ex-boyfriend may have killed her.

Records: 2 men took child hostage after reservation killings

The documents obtained Monday said the child managed to escape as the two men demanded keys and took a vehicle.

The men face assault charges related to the Saturday killings on the Yakima Indian Reservation.

Two other people have also been arrested.

Sheriff Robert Udell says some of the victims were known for being involved in illegal drug activities.

Defense Attorneys in ‘Junior’ Trial Argue Defendants Only Trying To Intimidate, Not Kill Him

Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz, 15, was dragged out of a Bronx bodega on 183rd Street and Bathgate Avenue in New York and was slashed to death by gang members wielding a machete on June 20, 2018.

The five suspects—Manuel Rivera, Elvin Garcia, Jose Muniz, Antonio Rodriguez Hernandez Santiago, and Jonaiki Martinez Estrella—are charged with first-degree murder, second-degree murder, manslaughter, gang assault, conspiracy, and criminal possession of a weapon.

In a pitch to jurors on Monday, June 10, the defense attorneys argued to persuade them that just one of the group of five was responsible for Junior’s murder in the brutal gang attack last year, reported Pix11.

States sue to stop $26.5 billion Sprint-T-Mobile deal

Other attorneys general joining Tuesday’s lawsuit are from Colorado, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Virginia and Wisconsin. All 10 attorneys general are Democrats.

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in New York.

It’s an unusual step by the state attorneys general ahead of a decision by federal antitrust authorities. The Justice Department’s decision is pending. The Republican majority of the Federal Communications Commission supports the deal .

Consumer advocates, labor unions and many Democratic lawmakers worry that the deal could mean job cuts, higher wireless prices and a hit to the rural cellphone market.

Opioid Maker Agrees to Pay $225 Million to Settle Federal Probes

Insys Therapeutics founder John Kapoor leaves federal court in Boston. On Jan. 30, 2019. (Steven Senne/AP Photo)

The settlement stems from criminal and civil probes into Insys Therapeutics Inc.’s scheme to pay doctors in exchange for prescriptions of the drug meant for cancer patients with severe pain.

It comes a month after Insys Founder John Kapoor and four other former executives of the Chandler, Arizona-based company were convicted of bribing doctors across the country to prescribe the drug known as Susbys.

Authorities have held Insys up as an example of their efforts to target those responsible for driving the drug crisis.

Daughter of ‘tiger mom’ Chua picked as Kavanaugh law clerk

Yale Law graduate Sophia Chua-Rubenfeld will serve as a law clerk to Kavanaugh for a year, beginning this summer, the court confirmed Monday. Chua-Rubenfeld had planned to work for Kavanaugh when he served as a federal appeals court judge, but his Supreme Court nomination intervened.

Shortly after the nomination, Chua penned a Wall Street Journal essay extolling Kavanaugh “as a mentor for young lawyers, particularly women.”

Chua, who wrote a book called “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” that describes her tough Chinese-style parenting on her two daughters, said she came to know Kavanaugh because she served on the Yale panel that sought to place graduates in prestigious federal clerkships.

She said she helped eight women and two men get jobs in his court office over a decade.

Why is Nancy Pelosi ignoring Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg?

The tech mogul has reached out to the country’s most powerful Democrat in recent weeks to talk about how Facebook handles viral misinformation, but sources told The Washington Post that Pelosi has not called him back or personally replied.

The Post reports that the California congresswoman is still frustrated with Facebook’s handling of a doctored clip of her remarks that made Pelosi appear drunk or senile.

News of the communication breakdown comes at a challenging time for Facebook and Big Tech in general, with Justice Department and FTC investigations brewing and a separate, wide-ranging House Judiciary Committee probe underway.

In addition, on Thursday the House Intelligence Committee will hold a hearing about manipulated media and deepfake technology.

Lawmakers and journalism groups blast big tech for sending news industry into ‘economic freefall’

Some news outlets and journalism groups accuse big tech of jeopardizing the industry’s economic survival by posting news content on their platforms without paying for it and perpetually changing algorithms.

“It’s important to fight against consolidated power,” said Gene Kimmelan, president of Public Knowledge, an open-Internet advocacy group, “particularly when it comes to the market of ideas.”

The hearing on Tuesday came as the House Judiciary Committee launched an investigation into Facebook and Google practices amid claims that the two Silicon Valley behemoths are operating a monopoly.

Mini-AOC releases ‘re-election video’ mocking the New York congresswoman

Ava Martinez,"Mini AOC"
Ava Martinez,”Mini AOC”

“Hello, like, I’m AOC, because I can’t spell Alexandria Ocasio Cortez. So, it turns out socialism is not short for social media,” Martinez said, while wearing lipstick and glasses similar to the real Ocasio-Cortez.

“I should have known it wasn’t short for social media because the only other socialist is a 93-year-old man from Vermont,” she said, referring to Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. “There’s no way Bernie’s Instagram is lit.”

The video accompanied a tweet listing a series of fake slogans that seemed to take shots at Ocasio-Cortez’s inexperience and her climate change warnings.

BILL MAHER: POLITICAL CORRECTNESS IS A ‘CANCER ON PROGRESSIVISM’

Despite being a prominent liberal, Maher has been consistently outspoken about his disdain for political correctness, and its role in Trump’s ascension to the White House. Last year, Maher said that political correctness was “our problem,” referring to the left.

Maher told CNN’s Chris Cuomo that political correctness has become a “cancer on progressivism,” and said that most liberals are sick of it.

“I don’t think you can overestimate how much people have been choking on political correctness and hate it,” Maher continued.

Politics:

President Trump Delivers a Statement Upon Departure

The White House

Dems halt effort to secure pay increase for lawmakers, as contempt votes, funding drama loom

Members of Congress generally make $174,000 per year, with senior leaders earning more, and no cost-of-living adjustments have been made in the past nine years. However, vulnerable swing-state Democrats, concerned how the proposed $4,500 pay hike would look if it didn’t also have Republican support, had signed onto amendments rejecting the measure.

“It needs more discussion,” House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y., told Fox News.

New York Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, meanwhile, told Fox News Monday that the planned $4,500 bonus was simply a cost-of-living adjustment.

Trump: ‘Mexico Is Doing More for the United States Than Democrats’

President Donald Trump
President Donald Trump talks with reporters before departing on Marine One, in Washington on May 30, 2019. (Evan Vucci/AP Photo)

“It’s sad that, when you think of it, Mexico is doing is more for the United States, as of now, than Congress.

And, specifically, the Democrats, they have to get their act together,” he told reporters at the White House.

“They have to work and get something done because you got a tremendous problem at the border.

You have people pouring in. And it means crime. It means drugs. It means so many other things.”

Trump noted that his administration is working on preventing illegal immigration.

Kirsten Gillibrand Says Opposing Abortion is Like Being a Racist

Gillibrand is one of more than 20 Democrats hoping to challenge President Donald Trump in 2020. She has a 100-percent pro-abortion voting record and recently voted against a bill to protect newborns from infanticide.

“I will only appoint judges and justices that see Roe v Wade as settled precedent, because it is,” she said. She also claimed abortions are “basic human rights” for women.

“There is no moral equivalency when you come to racism,” Gillibrand said, “and I do not believe there is a moral equivalency when it comes to changing laws that deny women reproductive freedom.”

By claiming the moral high ground, Gillibrand tries to justify her plan to appoint biased, activist judges to the highest courts in America. In her mind, there should be no question about whether abortion is moral – she insists that it is, despite polls consistently showing that a majority of Americans disagree.

Immigration:

Ingraham: States of immigration crisis

Immigration crisis is putting Americans’ health, well-being at risk.

DHS chief reveals startling stat on asylum seekers who skip hearings, disappear

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., asked Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan how many asylum seekers coming across the southern border show up for their hearings.

“Out of those 7,000 cases, 90 received final orders of removal in absentia, 90 percent,” he said.

“90 percent did not show up?” Graham asked.

“Correct, that is a recent sample from families crossing the border,” McAleenan clarified.

Mexico reveals border infrastructure plan; Trump vows migration deal details

Over the past few days, Marcelo Ebrard has gradually announced more commitments made to stave off a threat of tariffs by U.S. President Donald Trump, who on Tuesday reiterated that parts of last week’s deal were yet to be revealed.

Speaking at a regular government news conference, Ebrard said not enough priority had been given to Mexico’s southern border and that the state needs to have a stronger presence across the frontier to deal with migrant flows.

Over the weekend there was no sign that Mexico had started to harden the border, with migrants and locals crossing a river on rafts in sight of a busy official port of entry.

While Trump has not revealed what undisclosed details of the agreement he is referring to, over the past two days Ebrard has admitted that as well as the published text, Mexico agreed to a 45-day timeline to show that increased enforcement efforts were effective in reducing flows of migrants.

World News:

Exposed: Slave Labor, Torture in Communist China

In undercover footage shot inside China’s notorious Masanjia labor camp, prisoners are shown hunched over work tables, with piles of wire diodes—an electronic component—on either side of a rubber mat.

They do this work 15 hours a day, while being fed subsistence meals and receiving a pittance or no pay at all.

Some inmates, exhausted, are shown lying down to sleep under their work tables.

Those who protest their mistreatment are badly beaten. One video shows an inmate, injured from such a beating, shackled to his bed.

China Telecom May Have Revealed a New Hacking Method

China Telecom sign
A pedestrian walks past a China Telecom sign on a street in Shanghai on Aug. 21, 2013. (PETER PARKS/AFP/Getty Images)

For two hours on June 6, a large portion of mobile device traffic in Europe was diverted through systems controlled by China Telecom.

According to ZDNet, the technical error was caused after a Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), which reroutes traffic at the internet service provider level, at Swiss data center company Safe Host leaked over 70,000 routes to the Chinese internet service provider.

It notes that there are usually safety procedures to prevent BGP leaks such as this, and the issue could have been fixed when it was discovered.

Because of this, data from European mobile networks were rerouted through China Telecom’s networks, which could have exposed the data to the Chinese state-run company.

This also slowed connections for some users, and affected connections for others.

State Department: ‘International Unity’ Grows on Confronting Iran After UK Bomb Plot Report

State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus speaks during a media briefing at the State Department in Washington on June 10, 2019. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

The department also commended the UK for expanding its designation of Hezbollah as a terror group.

“This Iran-sponsored terrorist group has American blood on its hands and continues to plot and carry out attacks not only in the Middle East, but also in Europe and around the world,” a department spokesperson said in an emailed statement.

“It is clear that international unity to confront the Iranian regime continues to grow, and we call on all European countries to follow the UK’s example.”

Detained US Resident Freed by Iran, on His Way to Lebanon

Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim, right, chief of Lebanese General Security Directorate, and Nizar Zakka, left, (The official twitter page of the Lebanese General Security Directorate via AP)

Nizar Zakka, held in Iran since 2015 on charges of spying, was on a plane accompanied by the chief of Lebanon’s General Security Directorate, Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Abbas, heading to the Lebanese capital, according to a photo released by the directorate on its official Twitter page.

Zakka is one of several prisoners with either dual nationality or links to the West held in Iran.

Lebanese officials have for years asked for his release, and it was not clear why Iran decided to act now.

Zakka was expected to head straight from the airport to the presidential palace, where he will be received by President Michel Aoun, who had personally requested his release.

9 shot dead in 2 gunbattles in Mexico’s Sonora state

State prosecutors say in a statement Tuesday that the first firefight took place the previous afternoon in Agua Prieta, which lies across the border from Douglas, Arizona.

Four men and a woman were found dead in two cars and lying on a street. Some were clad in tactical vests, and assault rifles were recovered at the scene.

About two hours later, more gunfire erupted on a highway in nearby Naco. Four men were found shot dead in a car with Arizona license plates. A 12-year-old boy was wounded by a stray bullet but his life was not in danger.

Commentary/Opinion:

Fox News Video: Mark Penn urges Democrats to put the country first and end investigation of President Trump

Democrats have a duty to move past the Mueller report and focus on legislating, says former Clinton pollster Mark Penn.

Steve Says: Tariffs work!

The president’s decision to threaten tariffs on Mexico got concrete results.

How Will an Immigration Deal Change the 2020 Election? • America’s Newsroom

Tucker: Media ignores Trump’s border victory

Trump’s threat to impose tariffs on goods from Mexico sees results.