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Samantha Power now in the spotlight in the ‘unmasking’ scandal investigation

July 20, 2017

  As I write every time I do a story on the unmasking scandal, this is one of the aspects of the Russia investigation which has not received the media attention it deserves. Most of the attention has revolved around Susan Rice, who recently delayed testifying in front of the Congress, and her potential role but now another official is coming under the spotlight.

  According to this story former United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power is emerging as a key figure in the story. Here is more:

Former United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power’s involvement in the unmasking by former Obama administration officials of sensitive national security information is raising red flags over what insiders view was an attempt by the former administration to undermine President Donald Trump and key figures on his team, according to current and former U.S. officials familiar with the situation.

Power appears to be central to efforts by top Obama administration officials to identify individuals named in classified intelligence community reports related to Trump and his presidential transition team, according to multiple sources.

The names of Trump allies in the raw intelligence reports were leaked to the press in what many in Congress and the current administration claim is an attempt by Obama allies and former officials to damage the White House.

  Subpoenas have now been issued to Samantha Power, Susan Rice, and other top Obama administration officials. There is much more to read by following the link I provided above. If only the media cared about getting the truth about the whole scandal and not just the portions of the scandal which fits its agenda, the Democrats are not clean either…

malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

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Nancy Pelosi: Republican budget stirs up violence

July 19, 2017

  Earlier today Nancy Pelosi went on the offensive against the Republican budget claiming it stirs up violence. Here is some of what she said:

“A budget that says we do not measure the strength of our country in the health, education, and well-being of our people. We only measure it in military might,” Pelosi told the crowd. “You know what that does? It requires more military might. It takes us down the wrong path.”

“We take an oath to protect and defend,” Pelosi concluded. “But, that’s not the point of this. This is supposed to be a budget that prevents the spread of violence, instead they have a budget that stirs it up.”

   To date Nancy Pelosi has not commented on the violent rhetoric of the left which actually led to the shooting of Steve Scalice and others; such as Madonna dreaming of blowing up the White House, depicting  a beheaded Donald Trump, or putting on a play with Donald Trump getting stabbed to death. She has also not commented on any of the 15 different times celebrities have threatened violence against Donald Trump. Yet she chose a disagreement with policy to claim the Republicans were stirring up violence. 

  I think this tells us quite a bit about today’s left; no longer is it okay to disagree politically with them or to civilly debate the issues, any policy disagreement is apparently a call to arms.

malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

The Supreme Court hands Donald Trump a partial victory over Hawaii judge’s ruling on the travel ban

July 19, 2017

  Last week a judge in Hawaii, Derrick Watson, ruled that Donald Trump was misinterpreting the Supreme Court decision which allowed the travel ban to continue pending a hearing during the next Supreme Court session by interpreting the decision too narrowly. Here is more on Justice Watson’s decision:

a federal judge’s decision to allow grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles and other relatives of people in the U.S. to circumvent the Trump administration’s travel ban policy.

The order, issued Thursday evening local time in Honolulu by Judge Derrick Watson in Hawaii, deals a temporary blow to one of the president’s signature initiatives. It also prohibits the administration from blocking refugees with a commitment from a resettlement agency in the U.S., a move that could revive the flow of refugee admissions this year.

Jeff Sessions immediately challenged the ruling to the Supreme Court and today they handed down a mixed decision. Here is more:

The Supreme Court says the Trump administration can strictly enforce its ban on refugees, but at the same time is leaving in place a weakened travel ban that includes grandparents among relatives who can help visitors from six mostly Muslim countries get into the U.S.

The justices acted Wednesday on the administration’s appeal of a federal judge’s ruling last week. U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson ordered the government to allow in refugees formally working with a resettlement agency in the United States. Watson also vastly expanded the family relations that refugees and visitors can use to get into the country.

The high court blocked Watson’s order as it applies to refugees for now, but not the expanded list of relatives. The justices said the federal appeals court in San Francisco should now consider the appeal. It’s not clear how quickly that will happen.

And more:

In the meantime, though, up to 24,000 refugees who already have been assigned to a charity or religious organization in the U.S. will not be able to use that connection to get into the country.

“This ruling jeopardizes the safety of thousands of people across the world including vulnerable families fleeing war and violence,” said Naureen Shah, Amnesty International USA’s senior director of campaigns.

That part of the court’s ruling was a victory for President Donald Trump, who rolled out a first ban on travelers and refugees after just a week in office, prompting a legal fight that has raged ever since.

But the Supreme Court also denied the administration’s request to clarify its ruling last month that allowed the administration to partially reinstate a 90-day ban on visitors from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen and a 120-day ban on refugees from anywhere in the world.

The court’s ruling exempted a large swath of refugees and travelers with a “bona fide relationship” with a person or an entity in the U.S. The justices did not define those relationships but said they could include a close relative, a job offer or admission to a college or university.

Watson’s order added grandparents, grandchildren, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins

  Again, this is a mixed bag for the President’s travel ban but I am still left pondering something that bothers me about this whole story: The original travel ban was for 90 days because, we were told, it would take that amount of time to review the vetting process and yet months have now passed since the initial travel ban was blocked. Donald Trump did not have to wait for a decision on the travel ban before beginning a review of the vetting process so it seems to me the review should have been completed by now despite the fate of the travel ban. What is he waiting for if the refugees are the danger he claimed they were?

 malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

Donald Trump threatens to cut Obamacare subsidies

July 18, 2017

  With the Obamacare repeal bill dead before it arrived Donald Trump is once again talking about cutting the subsidies. Here is more:

Donald Trump holds a fuse in his hands — and he could decide to light it and blow up Obamacare insurance markets as soon as Thursday.

That’s the deadline for sending out the next monthly Affordable Care Act subsidies to health plans to defray the cost of caring for low-income individuals. Trump has toyed for months with the idea of stopping the payments to force Democrats to the negotiating table to avoid the prospect of millions of vulnerable Americans losing access to health coverage.

Trump has repeatedly told aides and advisers that he wants to end the subsidy payments, and he has not changed his position, according to several people who have spoken to him. “Why are we making these payments?” Trump has asked.

  In theory this might make sense as a means to force the Democrats to the negotiating table however this logic is flawed for two reasons: first; because the Republicans have not invited the Democrats to the negotiating table in the first place–the Republicans have been negotiating behind closed doors.

  And second; because it assumes the Democrats care about low-income families more than they care about scoring political points with these families. I believe the Democrats would be more than happy to let the cuts go through so they can blame Donald Trump and the Republicans thusly putting their own interests ahead of the interests of the people they claim to care the most about.

  This strategy might play well with Donald Trump supporters but I believe it will be a huge political disaster. At this point I think it is best to let Obamacare fail on its own–if indeed it is failing–and then move to fix what needs to be fixed. But then again the Democrats and the mainstream media will turn around and blame the Republicans for not fixing it when they knew it was going to fail.

malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

Susan Rice postpones her testimony in front of the Congress tomorrow over her role in the ‘unmasking’ scandal

July 17, 2017

  One of the aspects of the Russia hacking scandal which has been ignored by the mainstream media is the “unmasking” scandal which has surrounded Susan Rice. Susan Rice was supposed to testify tomorrow in front of the Congress about her role in the “unmasking” scandal but according to this story she has backed out. Here is more:

Susan Rice is no longer expected to visit Capitol Hill on Tuesday for a meeting with the House committee probing allegations she “unmasked” President Trump associates in Russian meddling probes. 

Rice had been expected to face tough questions on her role in the matter while serving as then-President Barack Obama’s national security adviser. Trump alleges Rice may have committed a crime by asking government analysts to disclose the names of his associates documented in intelligence reports.

Fox News was initially told Rice would be giving closed-door testimony Tuesday before the Republican-led House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

But that session has apparently been postponed. 

  This is quite interesting coming on the heals of the news that Susan Rice’s documents related to the “unmasking” scandal have been moved to the Obama Presidential Library where they cannot be seen by the public for five years.

  That was convenient, wasn’t it? It certainly looks like she has something to hide and today’s news adds fuel to that fire. FOX News contributor and attorney Gregg Jarrett appeared with Lou Dobbs and he speculated she has delayed her testimony because she has lawyered up because she is in serious legal trouble and could face indictment. Here is more: 

Jarrett says Rice’s latest moves suggest she has lawyers involved and that she is in “very serious legal trouble.”

Jarrett also told Lou that there will be indictments of Obama officials in the unmasking scandal.

Gregg Jarrett: This tells me that lawyers have gotten involved. Lawyers probably told her to clam up… Because she’s in legal jeopardy… At least one crime was committed here and likely many more.… I would imagine that once they determine who did it (unmasked) here they’re going to be indicted. Now is it going to be a member of the administration, it would have to be because they’re the only ones who had access, top administration officials, to the intelligence that actually does the collection.

  I still hold firm to my belief that Democrats may rue the day they pushed this McCarthyite Russian collusion conspiracy theory.

malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

Border Patrol union head says there has been a ‘miraculous’ drop in illegal immigration

July 17, 2017

  While Donald Trump has not been able, and most likely will not be able, to build the wall there has been a remarkable drop in illegal immigration since Donald Trump became President. So much so that the President of the National Border Patrol Council, Brandon Judd, has called in “miraculous” in an interview with C-Span.

  You can watch the interview with C-Span here but I have decided to use the transcript from The Daily Caller. Here is what he had to say:

Read more…

Mitch McConnell’s Obamacare replacement bill kickbacks

July 17, 2017

  We all remember how upset the establishment Republicans were during the Obamacare debate when Harry Reid was “bribing” politicians in order to get them to vote in favor of the legislation. Most Republican voters were also upset about kickbacks such as the “Cornhusker Kickback” and all the others. But while the Republicans in Washington DC were upset back then they seem to have taken a liking to kickbacks now that they are in power.

  According to this story Mitch McConnell is now taking a page out of Harry Reid’s playbook because “this is how things get done.” Here is some of the kickbacks Mitch McConnell and the establishment Republicans are offering moderate Republicans in order to obtain their votes:

Read more…