Watch Live: White House Press Briefing With Sarah Sanders (Feb. 20)

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders is scheduled to deliver an on-camera press briefing on Tuesday around 2 p.m. EST. It will be the first on-camera briefing since Wednesday's mass shooting at a South Florida high school left 17 people dead. ...read more Read more here: Watch Live: White House Press Briefing With Sarah Sanders (Feb. 20) ...
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U.S. Satisfaction With World Standing Hits 13-Year High

U.S. Satisfaction With World Standing Hits 13-Year High

Americans' satisfaction with the United States' position in the world is at a 13-year high, but most still think President Donald Trump's world standing is dismal. ...read more Read more here: U.S. Satisfaction With World Standing Hits 13-Year High ...
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Why Shuri, Black Panther’s teen girl genius, is Marvel’s most promising character in ages

By Caroline Framke Move over, Tony Stark. Black Panther has revealed a whole world beyond what superhero movies had ever dared to dream of. The truth of its fictional African nation of Wakanda, which has been hidden under a layer of deceptively barren plains for generations, is that it's a secret utopia overflowing with precious vibranium and technological marvels the likes of which not even the alien gods of Asgard could imagine. The best part, though? The mastermind behind Wakanda's most astonishing innovations is none other than a brilliant, cheeky-as-hell teen girl. King T'Challa's 16-year-old sister Shuri (the wonderful Letitia ...
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The Trump administration is quietly helping states defund Planned Parenthood

By Anna North Democrats fear anti-abortion advocates are writing Trump's health care policy — and the results could harm patients nationwide. Republicans in state legislatures have been trying for years to strip funding from Planned Parenthood. In January, the Trump administration gave them a gift, reversing Obama-era guidance regarding Medicaid funds. The change could make it harder for low-income patients in red states to get reproductive health care at Planned Parenthood, and some fear it could ultimately affect patients in blue states as well. But that's not all. According to documents provided to Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) by a whistleblower ...
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A Trump tweet echoed RT and Breitbart criticisms of the FBI’s Russia distraction

By Ricky Zipp The anatomy of a Trump tweet. In a span of four days, a controversial former police chief's theory linking the FBI's Russia investigation and the Florida school shooting made its way to the president of the United States' Twitter account, where he shared it with his 48 million followers. Of course, it's not the first time Trump has tweeted something controversial. But the fact that the president used a national tragedy to disparage the credibility of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia is raising some eyebrows. On February 17, the ...
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Democrats Push for Gun Control as Campaign Issue

By James Arkin Democrats have renewed their calls for tighter gun control measures in the wake of the mass shooting at a Florida high school last week, vowing to make it a campaign issue this year. Despite minimal success galvanizing voters around such measures in past elections, some advocates are hopeful it could be a more salient issue in this year's midterms. It's difficult to predict if that will be the case, especially when recent history shows that the public's attention diminishes once the immediate horror and aftermath of a shooting fades. Democrats repeatedly pushed the issue... ...read more Read ...
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Trump Knows Well That Everyone Has a Price

By Richard Cohen On April 29, 1962, John F. Kennedy gave a White House dinner for Nobel Prize winners. The president famously observed that his guests were "the most extraordinary collection of talent ... that has ever been gathered together at the White House -- with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone." Many years later, in 2007 to be exact, Donald Trump hosted an event in Los Angeles to launch his brand of vodka. At his table were his eldest son and his daughter-in-law -- as well as Trump's alleged mistress du jour and Kim Kardashian. Thomas ...
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Trump's Staggering Dereliction of Duty

By Ruth Marcus WASHINGTON -- National security adviser H.R. McMaster is in the news -- and apparently in the presidential doghouse -- for stating the obvious: that evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 election is "now really incontrovertible." So it is appropriate to take, as this column's theme, the title of McMaster's book on the Vietnam war, "Dereliction of Duty." McMaster was writing about military leaders' failure to stand up to presidents who insisted on pursuing an unwinnable war. Now, in the White House in which McMaster serves, the dereliction of duty starts at the top. And, as the ...
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Trump’s new plan to poke holes in the Obamacare markets, explained

By Dylan Scott Get to know short-term limited-duration insurance. The Trump administration is opening up a new avenue for Americans to buy health insurance that does not comply with the Affordable Care Act's regulations, the latest step in Donald Trump's administrative crusade against the health care law. The US Department of Health and Human Services' new proposed regulations would allow Americans to buy short-term insurance for up to 364 days. That coverage is allowed to skirt several of the health care law's core provisions: Plans can deny people insurance based on their medical history, charge them higher premiums because of ...
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Another volcano just erupted in the “Ring of Fire”

By Umair Irfan Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions have been rattling countries around the Pacific Rim this year. A massive column of smoke and ash shot nearly 10 miles into the sky above Sumatra Monday morning as Mount Sinabung, one of three currently active volcanoes in Indonesia, began erupting. It's the latest rumble in what's already been a very rowdy couple of months along the Ring of Fire, the geological region that follows the 25,000-mile perimeter of the Pacific Ocean and is home to 90 percent of the world's earthquakes. Pacific Ring of Fire continues to be active. Strongest eruption in ...
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Mueller charges attorney with making false statements about Rick Gates communications

Mueller charges attorney with making false statements about Rick Gates communications

By webin@politico.com (POLITICO Staff) Special counsel Robert Mueller's team on Tuesday announced the latest target in his sprawling probe, saying attorney Alex Van Der Zwaan made false statements about past communications with former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates.Gates faces criminal charges from Mueller over his lobbying work in Ukraine. Mueller said Van Der Zwaan, who worked for a law firm that did work in Ukraine in 2012, made false statements about communications in 2016 with Gates and an unnamed person.Van Der Zwaan is expected to appear in federal court in Washington Tuesday afternoon to offer a guilty plea to the ...
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Guns and Midterms; Redrawing Pa.; Memo to Comey; Breaking Barriers

Guns and Midterms; Redrawing Pa.; Memo to Comey; Breaking Barriers

By Carl M. Cannon Good morning, it's Tuesday, February 20, 2018. I hope you had a meaningful three-day weekend, although this Presidents' Day was riven by bitter and ever-escalating debates over gun control, the FBI investigation into Russia spying, and President Trump -- as well as Trump's flurry of Twitter commentaries over guns, Russia, and the FBI. Sometimes in this morning note, I try to provide perspective by pointing out how problems similar to those we face today have been confronted, and overcome, before. Other times, and this is the easier path, I point to an uplifting historical... ...read more ...
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How Much Will Redrawn Pa. Map Affect the Midterms?

By Sean Trende The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania recently revealed its newly drawn maps for the commonwealth. If you're interested in a down-in-the-weeds analysis of what the court's 5-2 Democratic majority did with each congressional district, I recommend this explainer from the New York Times. The bottom line is this: The court acted largely within the confines of its initial order, which demanded compactness, contiguity and minimal jurisdictional splits. Within those confines, however, it repeatedly made choices that increased the Democrats' odds of winning districts. For example,... ...read more Read more here: How Much Will Redrawn Pa. Map Affect the ...
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In November, Democrats Need to Be the Third Party

By Froma Harrop Widespread displeasure with Donald Trump and his party bodes well for Democrats in November. They have a good chance of retaking the House and a decent one of winning a Senate majority. But to get there, they must be smart. And being smart includes attracting Republicans repelled by Trump. There's not going to be a third party any time soon, as much as many centrists crave one. But Democrats can serve as a haven for independents and appalled Republicans wanting options other than the moral wreckage that's become the GOP. At least in 2018. For patriotic conservatives ...
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U.S. Leadership Image Suffers Most Among Friendly Nations

U.S. Leadership Image Suffers Most Among Friendly Nations

The most significant declines in U.S. leadership approval between 2016 and 2017 occurred in freer nations connected to the U.S. through a dense network of political and economic ties. ...read more Read more here: U.S. Leadership Image Suffers Most Among Friendly Nations ...
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Former Obama Adviser: “We’re Under Live Attack” From The Russians And Trump Is Focused On Obama

Former adviser to an Obama-era National Security Adviser Samantha Vinograd warned we are under "live attack" from the Russians and President Trump is doing nothing due to his narcissism and "massive inferiority complex." Vinograd brushed off Trump slamming former President Obama for doing "nothing" in a tweet sent yesterday. "He is so focused on his own narcissism that we're pointing fingers, that's we're stuck in the postgame of what Obama did or didn't do rather than saying, okay, they meddled, what are we going to do now? We're under live attack, Wolf, and we're doing nothing about it," she said ...
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People with disabilities shouldn’t be props in the gun debate

By Ari Ne'eman Both parties have been too quick to propose restrictions that could have ramifications far beyond guns. After the horrific shootings in Parkland, Florida, last week, President Donald Trump said very little about gun policy — but quite a bit about mental health. This has become a common move for many in the GOP, who hope to deflect a growing wave of pressure for stronger gun control laws. The president spoke of mental health in his prepared remarks on the shooting and in a tweet: Trump's emphasis on mental health was reiterated by House Speaker Paul Ryan, Florida ...
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How some on the right want to stop school shootings

By Jane Coaston Think TSA. And drones. In response to the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, last Wednesday that killed 17 people, some conservatives are suggesting that state governments and the federal government take radical action. They don't mean restoring the Federal Assault Weapons Ban of 1994 (which banned guns resembling the Colt AR-15, similar to the gun used in Parkland and one of the most popular rifles in America) or challenging the National Rifle Association's grip on the conversation about guns and their place in American life. They mean putting armed drones in schools. Or using Homeland Security technology ...
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A Russian athlete tested positive for a banned substance at the Olympics. Again.

By Umair Irfan Russia's efforts to rehabilitate its image at the Olympics are not going well. Aleksandr Krushelnitckii, an Olympic curler from Russia, left the Pyeongchang Winter Games on Sunday after a positive preliminary test for the banned substance meldonium. Krushelnitckii (also spelled Alexander Krushelnitsky) won a bronze medal last week with his wife and teammate Anastasia Bryzgalova in mixed-doubles curling, an event making its debut this year in Pyeongchang. The medal was also Russia's first in curling. But on Sunday, Krushelnitckii tested positive for meldonium, a heart drug that was banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency in 2016 because ...
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Ugh — Inflation Is Back

By Robert Samuelson WASHINGTON -- Anyone looking for good economic news will be disappointed by the latest inflation report, which showed the Consumer Price Index (CPI) advancing by 0.5 percent in January. By itself, this isn't especially alarming -- prices jump around month to month -- but it has troubling implications for the future. To some economists, it suggests the possibility of another financial crisis on the order of the 2008-09 crash. Until recently, inflation seemed to be dead or, at least, in a prolonged state of remission. It was beaten down by cost-saving technologies and a caution against raising ...
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Spending deals signal end of unpopular Obamacare cost checks

Spending deals signal end of unpopular Obamacare cost checks

By jhaberkorn@politico.com (Jennifer Haberkorn) Republicans and Democrats finally found something they can agree on about Obamacare: killing unpopular policies that were supposed to pay for the law or reduce health costs.The recent congressional spending deals repealed or delayed several Obamacare taxes, as well as a Medicare cost-cutting board. Removing those powerful levers, which terrified health providers and unions, is not a good omen for efforts to control health spending, which is expected to surge in the next few years.“This was a skillful effort by the groups that would have faced the sharp end of these measures,” said John McDonough, a ...
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Fat, unhealthy Americans threaten Trump’s defense surge

Fat, unhealthy Americans threaten Trump’s defense surge

By bbender@politico.com (Bryan Bender) The Trump administration's ambitious new military buildup is at risk of being hobbled before it even starts — by a dwindling pool of young Americans who are fit to serve.Nearly three-quarters of Americans age 17 to 24 are ineligible for the military due to obesity, other health problems, criminal backgrounds or lack of education, according to government data. That's a harsh reality check for the Pentagon's plan to recruit tens of thousands of new soldiers, sailors, pilots and cyber specialists over the next five years."We all have this image in our mind of this hearty American ...
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Students are rising up against gun violence in the aftermath of the Florida shooting

By German Lopez Two major protests are already scheduled for March. This time, it may be different. That seems to be the hope after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, that killed at least 17 people and injured at least 14 others. In the days after the shooting, students and activists have called on their peers around the country to demand action. This has so far culminated in two planned events: the National School Walkout on March 14 and the March for Our Lives on March 24. The theme of both events: Enough is enough. “Students ...
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Fox News’s appalling past 72 hours, analyzed

By Alvin Chang A data analysis shows how Fox News spun the Mueller indictment and Florida shooting into a defense of the president. On Friday, FBI special counsel Robert Mueller filed the first charges against Russians in his investigation. The indictment details how a small group of Russian internet trolls tried to leverage America's deep ideological divide to interfere with “political and electoral processes, including the presidential election of 2016.” It doesn't say whether the Trump campaign knew about this effort, or that it changed the election results. Rather, it methodically laid out a story of how Russians influenced American ...
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Russian election interference is far from over. I asked 9 experts how to stop it.

By Emily Stewart “US intelligence and law enforcement officials cannot protect us against threats if our own commander in chief does not acknowledge such threats.” Special counsel Robert Mueller on Friday handed down multiple indictments of Russian individuals and companies for the country's interference in the 2016 US elections. “NO COLLUSION,” the White House responded. President Donald Trump subsequently fired off several tweets commenting on the matter, ranging from claiming to never have doubted Russian election meddling (he did), blaming the Florida shooting on the Russia investigation (that's wrong), and musing what a great presidential candidate he was (¯_(ツ)_/¯). But ...
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White House: Trump supports stronger background checks for gun buys

White House: Trump supports stronger background checks for gun buys

By mnussbaum@politico.com (Matthew Nussbaum) President Donald Trump supports laws to strengthen the background check system for gun purchases in the wake of the Parkland, Florida high school shooting that killed 17, the White House announced on Monday.“The President spoke to Senator [John] Cornyn on Friday about the bi-partisan bill he and Sen. [Chris] Murphy introduced to improve Federal Compliance with Criminal Background check Legislation,” press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement. “While discussions are ongoing and revisions are being considered, the President is supportive of efforts to improve the Federal background check system.”This is the latest push for gun ...
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As a teacher, shooter drills were bad. Being expected to die for my students was terrifying.

By De Elizabeth I'd do anything to protect my students. Diving in front of bullets shouldn't be necessary. It was 9:15 am on a Tuesday, right in the middle of third period. The students in my eighth grade English class were working on projects, poster paper and crayons scattered across the floor. Suddenly the loudspeaker crackled and our principal's voice was heard throughout the school. “Attention all students, faculty, and staff,” she said, loudly but calmly. “There is an active shooter in the Challenger wing of the building.” Then, the briefest of silences followed by a semi-orderly stampede. My students ...
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On Gun Violence, We Are a Failed State

By E.J. Dionne WASHINGTON -- The surest sign a political regime is failing is its inability to do anything about a problem universally seen as urgent and that has some obvious remedies. And it's a mark of political corruption when unaccountable cliques block solutions that enjoy broad support and force their selfish interests to prevail over the common good. On gun violence, the United States has become a corrupt failed state. This is the only conclusion to draw from the endless enraging replays of the same political paralysis, no matter how many children are gunned down at our schools or ...
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Mollie Hemingway: “Disappointing” To See Joy Behar Mock VP Pence’s Religious Beliefs

On Sunday's edition of FOX News Channel's "MediaBuzz," Mollie Hemingway slammed Joy Behar for her comments this week mocking Vice President Mike Pence's religious beliefs as "mental illness." "It's one thing to talk to Jesus. It's another thing when Jesus talks to you," Behar said about Pence on 'The View' this week. "Christians believe that God talks to them through His word. This is a basic Christian belief and not something that really should be held up for mocking or ridicule," Hemingway explained. MOLLIE HEMINGWAY: Christians can handle this type of ridicule, they are used to it. It is something ...
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‘The View’ Host Joy Behar Mocks VP Mike Pence’s Christian Faith As “Mental Illness”

In a segment on 'The View' this week, co-host Joy Behar took a shot a Vice President Mike Pence's Christian faith, saying that talking to Jesus is one thing, but hearing Jesus talk to you could be described as "mental illness." Behar made the comments in response to a clip of fired WH staffer and 'The Apprentice' star Omarosa Manigault discussing how she felt uncomfortable around Pence. "As bad as you think Trump is, you would be worried about Pence… everyone that is wishing for impeachment might want to reconsider their life," Omarosa said on 'Celebrity Big Brother' this week ...
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