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Friday, July 20, 2018

A government lawyer acknowledged Monday that the Trump administration will miss its first court-imposed deadline to reunite about 100 immigrant children under age 5 with their parents. Department of Justice attorney Sarah Fabian said during a court hearing that federal authorities reunited two families and expect to reunite an additional 59 by Tuesday’s deadline. She said the other cases are more complicated, including parents who have been deported or are in prison facing criminal charges, and would require more time to complete reunions. U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw, who ordered the administration to reunite families separated as part of President Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy, said he will hold another hearing Tuesday morning to get an update on the remaining cases. He said he was encouraged to see “real progress” in the complicated reunification process after a busy weekend when officials from multiple federal agencies tried to sync up parents and children who are spread across the country. STORY FROM LENDINGTREE Crush your mortgage interest with a 15 yr fixed “Tomorrow is the deadline. I do recognize that there are some groups of parents who are going to fall into a category where it’s impossible to reunite by tomorrow,” he said. “I am very encouraged by the progress. I’m optimistic.” Lee Gelernt, an American Civil Liberties Union attorney who leads a lawsuit against the federal government, sounded more skeptical. When asked by the judge if he believed the government was in full compliance of the court order, Gelernt said there was much more work to be done. “Let me put it this way: I think the government in the last 48 hours has taken significant steps,” he said. “We just don’t know how much effort the government has made to find released parents. I don’t think there’s been full compliance.” U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw, based in San Diego. U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw, based in San Diego. (Photo: U.S. District Court) The difficulty in reuniting the first 100 children shows the challenge that lies ahead as the Trump administration braces for another deadline in two weeks to reunite nearly 3,000 older children – up to age 17 – with their parents. The process is complicated because of all the different situations that emerged over the weekend. The government initially identified 102 children under age 5 who needed to be reunited but removed three children from that list because investigations into their cases revealed that those children came with adults who were not their parents, Fabian said. Twelve parents were found to be in federal and state custody on criminal charges, making a reunification impossible since the government can’t transfer minors to state and local prisons to protect the well-being of the child. Nine parents were deported, and the government established contact with only four of them, Fabian said. Four children had been scheduled to be released from government custody to relatives who weren’t their parents, leading the government to question whether to allow that process to be completed or to redirect the child back to a parent. Gelernt said he understood many of the hurdles but urged the judge to force the government to scrap its time-consuming investigation into every single case and start a 48-hour clock to reunify families that remain separated by Tuesday. Sabraw said he would decide that during Tuesday’s hearing. Fabian said one of the silver linings of the busy weekend is that her office worked closely with its challengers at the ACLU to share information on each child’s case, to ensure that representatives from immigration advocacy groups and volunteer organizations could be present during each reunification. Gelernt said they’re doing that to help the parents, who are often released from custody with no money and nowhere to go. Fabian said that coordination has led to a more formalized process between government agencies and with the immigrants’ lawyers that should make reunifications go more smoothly in the coming weeks. “I think this process over the weekend helped us see what information, and in what form, is the most useful to share,” she said. “I’d like to make that as efficient a process as possible.” -

Monday, July 9, 2018

Trump denies US opposition to WHO breastfeeding resolution -

Monday, July 9, 2018

Havana plane crash leaves more than 100 dead -

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr bloc wins Iraq elections -

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott: ‘We need to do more than just pray for the victims and their families’ -

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Donald Trump says he will meet North Korea’s Kim Jong Un on June 12 in Singapore -

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Trump tells FBI: ‘I have your back 100%’ -

Friday, December 15, 2017

Mueller requests emails from Trump campaign data firm: report -

Friday, December 15, 2017

GOP changes child tax credit in bid to win Rubio’s vote -

Friday, December 15, 2017

Trump Jr. is berated for tweet about ‘Obama’s FCC’ chair, net ‘neutality’ -

Friday, December 15, 2017

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to marry on 19 May 2018 -

Friday, December 15, 2017

Walt Disney buys Murdoch’s Fox for $52.4bn -

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Roy Moore says Alabama election ‘tainted’ by outside groups -

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Eric Holder warns GOP: ‘Any attempt to remove Bob Mueller will not be tolerated’ -

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Former British prime minister: Trump attacks on press are ‘dangerous’ -

Thursday, December 14, 2017

China says war must not be allowed on Korean peninsula -

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Megyn Kelly left Fox News in part due to O’Reilly: report -

Saturday, April 15, 2017

North Korea warns against U.S. ‘hysteria’ as it marks founder’s birth -

Friday, April 14, 2017

British spies were first to spot Trump team’s links with Russia -

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Hillary Clinton campaign deploys not-so-secret weapon: Bill

The Guardian

Bill Clinton is has been largely in the background of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. ‘My role should primarily be as a backstage adviser until we get much, much closer to the election.’ Photograph: Justin Lane/EPA


Say what you like about President Bill Clinton – and many things have been said about him over the years, flattering and otherwise – but one thing is certain: he isn’t cheap. On Thursday he travelled to Chicago to headline two fundraising events for his wife Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign where top donors were required to bundle $50,000 each for the privilege of hearing him speak.

Not that the main donors hosting the event – billionaire JB Pritzker, entrepreneur Matt Moog, venture capitalist Howard Tullman and other members of Chicago’s business elite – would have balked at having to raise such a sum. At least for the price, they were granted a ringside seat at the making of US political history.


Clinton’s appearance at the fundraisers were the first time that he has been publicly rolled out in support of his wife’s bid for the White House in this election cycle. Until this week, Hillary Clinton’s Brooklyn-based campaign had kept him firmly in the background.

He was present on Roosevelt Island in June when she formally announced her candidacy, but even then he was limited to waving from the sidelines and kept away from the podium. Since then there has been nothing; as Bill himself has put it: “My role should primarily be as a backstage adviser until we get much, much closer to the election.”

That the first task he should be asked to perform in Hillary Clinton’s 2016 iteration should be raising cash surprises nobody – he is, after all, the human equivalent of an ATM. “His money-raising powers are off the chart,” said Matt Bennett, an aide in President Clinton’s White House who worked on both his presidential campaigns. “Most candidates dislike the job but he actually enjoys it – and when he is in close quarters with donors he has such charm that they tend to do whatever he asks them to.”

Bill Mahoney, a Chicago attorney and “enthusiastic” Clinton backer who attended one of the fundraisers, told the Guardian that having the former president in the room was powerful because “he is smart, he knows the issues, he’s energetic, he can remind the base here of the economic successes that occurred when he was president. And he can be a foundation for what Secretary Clinton wants to do with the economy.”

Phil Alexander, CEO of ConceptDrop, was present when Bill Clinton toured the Chicago startup incubator space 1871 in between Thursday’s two fundraisers. Alexander told the Guardian that the former president spoke at length though in general terms about the criticisms that his wife had faced in her campaign. Clinton argued that what had happened was not tied to her merit or experience as a potential candidate.” He reiterated that the presidential election was a marathon, not a sprint, Alexander said.

The question now is to what extent Clinton’s Chicago jaunt was a taste of things to come – will we now begin to see him more regularly on the campaign trail? Hillary Clinton could certainly do with some help from somewhere. She continues to suffer from the long-running sore created by her choice to set up a private email server when she was US secretary of state.

Despite the effort her campaign team has invested in humanizing her and making her appear approachable – Scooby-Doo van, late-night talkshows and all – her poll ratings in crucial early caucus and primary states have steadily declined in recent weeks. Most worryingly, her support levels are heading earthward even among the demographic she has most passionately embraced in the 2016 race – Democratic female voters.

But is her husband the right person to seek help from? Paul Begala, who played a key role in Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential victory and went on to advise him in the White House, thinks that the commentariat often overthinks the answer to that question.

“At the end of the day, this is Hillary’s campaign and she will win it on her own merits. But it can only help to have Pres Clinton in her corner,” he said.

Clinton was a “beloved figure” who amply displayed his value in 2012 when he made what Begala reckoned to be one of the most consequential speeches in Barack Obama’s bid for re-election at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. “If you had one of the greatest players who ever lived on your team, would you put him in the game? It would be malpractice not to.”

But political scientists who have studied the role of spouses in elections see a more complicated picture. Kelly Dittmar of the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University pointed to the phenomenon known as “spousal reflection” in which the presence of a spouse can have an impact, positive or negative, on the candidate.

“For male candidates the concept of spousal reflection is that you use your female spouse to reflect the masculinity and leadership of the man, as a benefit to him. But female candidates don’t receive the same benefit, as their spouses often reflect their femininity, which – in politics – may cue weakness,” Dittmar said.

During Hillary Clinton’s first presidential attempt in 2008, Bill was seen more frequently in public, actively laboring on her behalf at rallies and on stages. It didn’t always go so well – he famously got into several heated disputes with Obama’s campaign, making rash remarks that were then widely interpreted as playing the race card.

They included his claim that Obama’s anti-Iraq war posture was a “fairy tale”. At the height of the carping, Ryan Lizza of the New Yorker likened Clinton to an “ill-tempered coot driven a little mad by Obama’s success”.

Newspaper cartoonists made hay with the idea of Bill stomping all over his wife’s campaign. One cartoonist depicted Hillary making a stump speech while Bill’s giant shadow loomed over her.

Clearly, Hillary Clinton’s campaign chiefs are going to do everything they can to prevent a repeat performance of Bill Clinton 2008. But while he may remain fairly invisible on the campaign trail for a while longer, his presence is already being felt behind closed doors.

The campaign’s communications director Jennifer Palmieri has indicated that he often turns up for strategy huddles at campaign HQ. She told a Politico panelearlier this summer: “He doesn’t come to every meeting we have, but he does join his wife often in some of our discussions, and I’m always fascinated to hear what his observation is going to be because it’s always something no one said.”

Even away from the prying eyes of reporters and cartoonists, though, there are questions about whether his advice is always the most helpful. The New York Times reported that Clinton was “adamant” that his wife had nothing to apologize for her use of a private email channel while serving as America’s top diplomat.

Which would have been fine, had it not later transpired – by Hillary Clinton’s own admission – that she did indeed need to apologize and wished she had done it earlier.

The Democratic pollster Peter Hart wonders whether Clinton is properly equipped to be able to advise on a modern presidential campaign in the age of Twitter and Instagram. “I don’t want to speculate on the advice he’s giving, but it is true that we all draw on our own experiences and all the challenges Bill Clinton faced ended in 2000.”

Hart sees evidence of that in the way that Hillary Clinton has handled the email controversy. “This is the era of transparency. A candidate who is opaque finds it difficult – and up to now Hillary has at best been translucent.”

Source: The Guardian

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