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Westlake Legal Group > article (Page 180)

How did the coronavirus outbreak start?

The deadly coronavirus which broke out in China late last month has gripped the international community by fear, as cases continue to mount, and world leaders struggle to contain the epidemic.

As of Thursday, there have 7,736 confirmed cases in China, with 170 deaths, and thousands more suspected of carrying the virus, topping the number of people in China who were sickened during the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak.

Westlake Legal Group AP20030595268074-1 How did the coronavirus outbreak start? fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/health/infectious-disease/coronavirus fox news fnc/health fnc c8450673-cc15-5be5-97e3-641a16bb28f1 Bradford Betz article

This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).  (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP)

Globally, cases have been reported in neighboring eastern nations to as far-flung places as France, Germany, Finland, Canada, and the United States, which on Thursday reported its first case of person-to-person transmission of coronavirus.

But how did the deadly outbreak start?

The World Health Organization’s China office says it began receiving reports in late December of a mysterious virus behind a number of pneumonia cases in Wuhan, a city in eastern China with a population of roughly 11 million people.

Researchers suspect the virus originated at a seafood market in Wuhan, where wild animals, including birds, rabbits, bats, and snakes are traded.

Westlake Legal Group AP20030480344863 How did the coronavirus outbreak start? fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/health/infectious-disease/coronavirus fox news fnc/health fnc c8450673-cc15-5be5-97e3-641a16bb28f1 Bradford Betz article

Doctors look at a CT scan of a patient at a hospital in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei Province, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020. (Chinatopix via AP)

It was initially believed the virus came from snakes. But a research paper by a team of virologists at the Wuhan Institute for Virology suggests that the coronavirus more likely came from bats, which was also the source of the SARS outbreak.

Bats are known to carry multiple viruses without getting sick, according to the New York Times, which said they have caused human diseases in Africa, Malaysia, Bangladesh and Australia, and are thought to be the reservoir for Ebola.

Authorities shut down the market on January 1. But by then, the virus had spread beyond the market and was being transmitted between people.

On January 12, Chinese health officials shared a genetic sequence of the virus with other countries to better diagnose the strain in patients.

HOW CHINA IS BUILDING A CORONAVIRUS HOSPITAL IN A WEEK

A committee of the WHO on Thursday declared the outbreak a global emergency. The U.N. health agency defines an international emergency as an “extraordinary event” that constitutes a risk to other countries and requires a coordinated international response.

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Such a declaration usually brings greater money and resources but also compels governments to restrict travel and trade to affected countries. The announcement also imposes stricter requirements for disease reporting on countries.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP20030595268074-1 How did the coronavirus outbreak start? fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/health/infectious-disease/coronavirus fox news fnc/health fnc c8450673-cc15-5be5-97e3-641a16bb28f1 Bradford Betz article   Westlake Legal Group AP20030595268074-1 How did the coronavirus outbreak start? fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/health/infectious-disease/coronavirus fox news fnc/health fnc c8450673-cc15-5be5-97e3-641a16bb28f1 Bradford Betz article

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WATCH: Plagiarized speech that sunk Biden’s 1988 presidential campaign

Westlake Legal Group Biden-1987-Withdraw-Getty WATCH: Plagiarized speech that sunk Biden's 1988 presidential campaign Matt London fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/media fnc b28a993f-11ed-5581-b831-bb0b9ec33855 article

With four days to go until the Iowa Caucuses, former vice president Joe Biden’s campaign released a new political ad called “Character” that will air in Iowa’s top five markets. 

However, it was in Iowa in 1987 that then-Sen. Biden delivered a plagiarized speech that led him to abandon his first presidential campaign.

In Fox Nation’s new docuseries, “Proving Grounds: Iowa,” Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume recounts the history of the Iowa caucuses, how they came to be the first contest in the primaries, and detailed the presidential campaigns that the state launched and abruptly ended.

“Joe Biden, a senator from Delaware… closed the debate at the Iowa State Fair with an emotional invocation of his coal-mining ancestors,” narrated Hume in the Fox Nation show. “The rival [Michael] Dukakis campaign leaked a tape proving Biden had plagiarized the bit from a speech by a British politician talking about his family.”

“I started thinking as I was coming over here, why is it that Joe Biden is the first in his family ever to go to a university?” said Biden in Iowa in August 1987.

“Why is it that my wife who is sitting out there in the audience is the first in her family to ever go to college?” he continued, gesturing to his wife Jill. “Is it because our fathers and mothers were not bright?”

“My ancestors, who worked in the coal mines in northeast Pennsylvania, who would come up after 12 hours and play football for four hours,” he went on, arguing that he is fighting to help struggling Americans. “It’s because they didn’t have a platform upon which to stand.”

The words and phrases mirrored — almost exactly — the campaign speech of British Labor Party leader Neil Kinnock.

In his remarks, Kinnock said, “Why am I the first Kinnock in a thousand generations to be able to get to university?”

“Why is Glenys the first woman in her family in a thousand generations to be able to get to university?” he said referencing his own wife.

“Was it because all our predecessors were thick?… Those people who could work eight hours underground and then come up and play football?”

“It was because there was no platform upon which they could stand,” Kinnock concluded.

It ultimately sank Biden’s presidential ambitions that year.

“When more instances of plagiarism followed, Biden withdrew,” narrated Hume.

JUSTICE CLARENCE THOMAS: JOE BIDEN HAD ‘NO IDEA’ WHAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT AT CONFIRMATION HEARINGS

The Delaware senator also admitted to being accused of plagiarism in law school and was shown to have padded his academic record while speaking to voters in New Hampshire.

“I’m angry with myself for having… put myself in the position of having to make this choice,” said Biden at a Sept. 23, 1987, news conference that he called to announced his decision to drop out of the race. “And I am no less frustrated for the environment of presidential politics.”

In the Biden campaign ad released on Thursday, a narrator reads over images of the Oval Office, “It’s said that in here, your character is revealed,” the spot concluded. “Character matters, maybe more here than anywhere.”

“Proving Grounds: Iowa” is available exclusively on Fox Nation.

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Fox Nation programs are viewable on-demand and from your mobile device app, but only for Fox Nation subscribers. Go to Fox Nation to start a free trial and watch the extensive library from Tomi Lahren, Pete Hegseth, Abby Hornacek, Laura Ingraham, Ainsley Earhardt, Greg Gutfeld, Judge Andrew Napolitano and many more Fox News personalities.

Westlake Legal Group Biden-1987-Withdraw-Getty WATCH: Plagiarized speech that sunk Biden's 1988 presidential campaign Matt London fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/media fnc b28a993f-11ed-5581-b831-bb0b9ec33855 article   Westlake Legal Group Biden-1987-Withdraw-Getty WATCH: Plagiarized speech that sunk Biden's 1988 presidential campaign Matt London fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/media fnc b28a993f-11ed-5581-b831-bb0b9ec33855 article

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Salvador Dali sculptures worth up to $500G stolen from Swedish gallery

Thieves made off with valuable works of art by Spanish surrealist artist Salvador Dali after an early morning smash-and-grab at a gallery in Sweden, authorities said.

“At least two thieves” shattered the entrance window to the Couleur gallery in central Stockholm around 4 a.m. on Thursday, police said.

GERMANY JEWELRY HEIST SURVEILLANCE VIDEO SHOWS THIEVES BREAK CASE WITH AX BEFORE SWIPING ‘PRICELESS’ GEMS

They took 10 to 12 table-sized bronze statues and etchings, Reuters reported.

Westlake Legal Group salvador-dali-Getty Salvador Dali sculptures worth up to $500G stolen from Swedish gallery Stephen Sorace fox-news/world/world-regions/sweden fox-news/world/crime fox-news/entertainment/genres/arts fox news fnc/world fnc article 1135bfd2-2ddf-52ba-a7ef-0ba4c6668c2c

Spanish surrealist painter Salvador Dali lived from May 1904 to January 1989. (Getty Images)

Each of the Dali sculptures is worth between $21,000 and $52,000 and measures up to 20 inches tall, Gallery owner Peder Enstrom told the Swedish news agency TT.

Forensic experts were searching the gallery for clues and no suspects have been arrested.

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The sculptures — including several of Dali’s famous melting watches on a tree — had been on display at the gallery for 10 days and were on loan from Switzerland. The exhibit was set to end Saturday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group salvador-dali-Getty Salvador Dali sculptures worth up to $500G stolen from Swedish gallery Stephen Sorace fox-news/world/world-regions/sweden fox-news/world/crime fox-news/entertainment/genres/arts fox news fnc/world fnc article 1135bfd2-2ddf-52ba-a7ef-0ba4c6668c2c   Westlake Legal Group salvador-dali-Getty Salvador Dali sculptures worth up to $500G stolen from Swedish gallery Stephen Sorace fox-news/world/world-regions/sweden fox-news/world/crime fox-news/entertainment/genres/arts fox news fnc/world fnc article 1135bfd2-2ddf-52ba-a7ef-0ba4c6668c2c

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Sen. Bob Casey: Why is GOP ‘afraid’ of impeachment witness testimony?

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-30-at-1.53.16-PM Sen. Bob Casey: Why is GOP 'afraid' of impeachment witness testimony? Joshua Nelson fox news fnc/media fnc article a9ee6533-ae24-576a-aade-766b03643ba2

Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., argued on Thursday that a vote by Senate Republicans to block additional witnesses from the impeachment trial would show that President Trump is “dictating the trial” instead of the Senate.

“These are grave charges in a serious determination we have to make. The best way to get to that is [to] put people under oath,” Casey told “America’s Newsroom,” referencing the accusation that Trump requested that Ukraine conduct an investigation into a political opponent.

GOP DEVELOPS AGGRESSIVE ‘PLAN B’ IN IMPEACHMENT TRIAL, AS SEVERAL DEMS APPEAR TO SUPPORT ACQUITTAL: SOURCE

“I don’t know why Republicans seem to be afraid of having people put their hand in the air, testify under oath, and then be cross-examined. The president’s lawyers could have as much time as they need to cross-examine John Bolton or any other witness. But, what are they afraid of? They don’t seem to want to put anyone under oath who’s making the case for the president.”

“I would hope that to have a full and fair trial that they would be voting affirmatively for relevant witnesses and relevant documents,” Casey said.

“I think the trial could proceed from there. I think it would be the right approach for the Senate to take, but, they have to make that decision.”

Republican senators are sounding more optimistic they have the votes to soon end the impeachment trial of President Trump and shut down a wildcard phase of calling witnesses.

DERSHOWITZ MOUNTS UNCONVENTIONAL DEFENSE OF TRUMP AS SENATE IMPEACHMENT TRIAL ENTERS NEW PHASE

Despite Democrats’ drumbeat on the need to call witnesses like former National Security Adviser John Bolton, Republicans have signaled there’s growing momentum to shut down the trial sometime after the questioning phase concludes Thursday night — though exactly how that plays out is an open question.

“I think, by that time, people will have heard enough,” Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., told “Fox News @ Night.” “They will have learned what they need to know about this case. And the plan is for Friday to vote. And the momentum is moving to say we’ve heard enough. Let’s move to final judgment.”

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On Friday, senators will take the fateful vote on whether to continue the trial by subpoenaing witnesses and documents. After the trial begins at 1 p.m., the House managers and White House lawyers will have four hours, equally divided, to debate the merits of bringing Bolton and others to testify.

Democrats would need at least four Republicans to join them to get the 51 votes needed to pass.

Fox News’ Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-30-at-1.53.16-PM Sen. Bob Casey: Why is GOP 'afraid' of impeachment witness testimony? Joshua Nelson fox news fnc/media fnc article a9ee6533-ae24-576a-aade-766b03643ba2   Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-30-at-1.53.16-PM Sen. Bob Casey: Why is GOP 'afraid' of impeachment witness testimony? Joshua Nelson fox news fnc/media fnc article a9ee6533-ae24-576a-aade-766b03643ba2

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Sen. Paul & Rep. Gaetz: In Trump’s Senate impeachment trial Dems are the ones abusing power

Westlake Legal Group nadler-schiff-pelosi Sen. Paul & Rep. Gaetz: In Trump's Senate impeachment trial Dems are the ones abusing power Rand Paul Matt Gaetz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/elections/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article a498c0ac-6e5f-54d6-8af3-b142360f46ed

The American people have seen a grand charade on display in Washington.

First, the circus toured the U.S. House for weeks, and now the sideshow has stopped over in the U.S. Senate. Democrats have accused President Donald Trump of using the government to go after his political opponents, yet they are doing the very same thing right now on the floor of the U.S. Senate.

They have wrongly weaponized the U.S. Constitution in order to go after their political opponent, President Trump. Does their hypocrisy have no shame? They have been bitter and disgruntled about the outcome of the 2016 election since day one, and this is the latest chapter in trying to undermine the will of the people and declare the last election illegitimate.

JUSTICE ROBERTS BLOCKS SEN. PAUL FROM NAMING WHISTLEBLOWER, SOURCE SAYS – AND PAUL MAY FORCE THE ISSUE

This partisan exercise is wrong, divides our nation, and wastes not only time but millions of taxpayer dollars on a doomed theatrical production.

House impeachment managers have railed against the president with marathon speechifying, hoping if they repeat untruths often enough, they will somehow become true. President Trump’s legal team has chosen a different approach: a succinct case, and one relying on facts, rather than hearsay. Their avoidance of gossip, speculation, rumor, half-truths, and outright lies has been warmly received in the greatest deliberative body on Earth.

But what was the delay in bringing the articles to the Senate? Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi sat on the articles of impeachment for a month after the House voted for them, trying to leverage the Senate into adopting rules that would benefit House Democrats, at the expense of the president, the Senate, and any notion of fairness.

Her weeks-long delay fundamentally undercuts the “urgency” of impeachment. Either the impeachment needed to take place as soon as possible because President Trump was a threat to democracy — as Democrats claimed — or the impeachment could gather dust as long as the Speaker wanted. It can’t be both.

But political gamesmanship notwithstanding, consider the articles of impeachment themselves. The first article accuses the president of ‘abuse of power,’ for the ostensible “crime” of suggesting in a phone call that foreign aid to Ukraine would be conditioned on investigations of corruption — including corruption on the part of the Bidens and their associates.

Not only have previous presidents withheld foreign aid, including President Obama, but the United States has regularly conditioned aid on compliance with certain goals, principles, and policies. And plenty of people on both sides of the aisle have raised questions regarding the Bidens and Ukraine. However, President Trump is right when he says people need to read the transcript of the call that started all this. You won’t find conditionality in there.

The second article, which accuses the president of “obstructing Congress,” is even more ridiculous and baseless than the first. Having the courts determine what conversations of the president and his advisors are privileged is not “obstruction” — it is correct, constitutional, and appropriate. Under House Democrats’ bizarrely stretched interpretation of “obstruction,” every single American president in history would have warranted impeachment.

Implementing their new “standard” would not only ignore that history, but it would have a chilling effect on the freedom of interaction between presidents and advisors moving forward. It would also distort the idea of separation of powers to one where a president is expected to instantly bow every time to whatever demands partisans in Congress make — or face impeachment.

The Democrats are not preserving justice with their end-run around our legal system. If anything, it is they who are abusing their power of impeachment simply because of their impatience.

If we truly want to talk about obstruction, however, there is no more conspicuous case than the obstruction and deception perpetrated by Rep Adam Schiff, D-Calif. — the head chef of this toxic impeachment stew.

More from Opinion

Mr. Schiff told us there was no FISA abuse on the part of partisan senior members of the FBI and DOJ — a claim the Obama-appointed Inspector General of the Department of Justice proved to be wholly false.

Mr. Schiff told us that President Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia — a claim the endless and baseless Mueller investigation found to be false.

Mr. Schiff claimed he had no contact with the so-called whistleblower, whose discredited allegations became the basis of this impeachment scam — this too has been proven false.

Though witnesses are not necessary for this trial, should they be called, Adam Schiff must be among them. He is a fact witness to the matter at hand.

The American people know this impeachment isn’t really about secondhand gossip about a phone call with Ukraine. The whole saga is nothing more than the sloppy sequel to Robert Mueller’s failed Russia Hoax — and the ‘Russia Hoax’ itself was never anything more than a transparent attempt to nullify the 2016 election and override the will of the American people.

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It seems Democrats will do anything to avoid having to persuade the American voter to embrace their increasingly radical and unpopular political platform.

As we move toward the end of the impeachment trial, it is imperative the American people remember that the president’s only true “impeachable” offense was winning the 2016 election — against all odds, and against the coordinated opposition of the establishments of both parties, the Bush and Clinton dynasties, the mainstream media, Wall Street, and the Deep State.

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The only quid pro quo relevant here is the American people’s decision to send President Trump to the White House in exchange for his commitment to support our workers, grow our economy, defend our troops, and drain the swamp.

The president has kept his promises, and America will remember in November.

Republican Matt Gaetz represents Florida’s 1st congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY SEN. RAND PAUL

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY REP. MATT GAETZ

Westlake Legal Group nadler-schiff-pelosi Sen. Paul & Rep. Gaetz: In Trump's Senate impeachment trial Dems are the ones abusing power Rand Paul Matt Gaetz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/elections/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article a498c0ac-6e5f-54d6-8af3-b142360f46ed   Westlake Legal Group nadler-schiff-pelosi Sen. Paul & Rep. Gaetz: In Trump's Senate impeachment trial Dems are the ones abusing power Rand Paul Matt Gaetz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/elections/senate fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article a498c0ac-6e5f-54d6-8af3-b142360f46ed

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Impeachment endgame: GOP senators eye swift conclusion to trial, say ‘It’s time to vote’

Westlake Legal Group Barrasso-Capitol Impeachment endgame: GOP senators eye swift conclusion to trial, say 'It’s time to vote' Marisa Schultz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article 463779c6-bdec-5db5-8f92-7fd4fb96433a

Republican senators are sounding more optimistic they have the votes to soon end the impeachment trial of President Trump and shut down a wildcard phase of calling witnesses.

Despite Democrats’ drumbeat on the need to call witnesses like former National Security Adviser John Bolton, Republicans have signaled there’s growing momentum to shut down the trial sometime after the question phase concludes Thursday night — though exactly how that plays out is an open question.

“I think, by that time, people will have heard enough,” Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., told “Fox News @ Night.” “They will have learned what they need to know about this case. And the plan is for Friday to vote. And the momentum is moving to say we’ve heard enough. Let’s move to final judgment.”

JUSTICE ROBERTS BLOCKS SEN. PAUL FROM NAMING WHISTLEBLOWER, SOURCE SAYS – AND PAUL MAY FORCE THE ISSUE

Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., was optimistic impeachment could end as soon as late Friday if the witness vote fails and senators move to acquit the president.

“Obviously, I think we’re going to push to finish Friday,” Rounds said Wednesday night after the dinner break with his caucus.

Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., also cautiously upbeat, said if the witness votes fails, he’d like to see the Senate move swiftly toward an acquittal. 

“My personal preference would be let’s move quickly to close it out. But, that will probably be a group decision,” Thune said.

On Friday, senators will take the fateful vote on whether to continue the trial by subpoenaing witnesses and documents. After the trial begins at 1 p.m., the House managers and White House lawyers will have four hours, equally divided, to debate the merits of bringing Bolton and others to testify.

Democrats would need at least four Republicans to join with them to get 51 votes needed to pass.

DERSHOWITZ MOUNTS UNCONVENTIONAL DEFENSE OF TRUMP AS SENATE IMPEACHMENT TRIAL ENTERS NEW PHASE

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said he believes there are at least three Republicans who are seriously considering witnesses. “We need more,” he acknowledged Thursday.

GOP Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska are the three senators who have consistently signaled a willingness to join with Democrats.

“The fate of much of the future of how this republic conducts itself is on the shoulders of four Republicans,” said Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

“A trial without truth, without key evidence, without witnesses and documents would render the president’s acquittal meaningless,” Schumer added. “A giant asterisk next to it, because the trial was so rigged in his favor.”

If the vote on witnesses fails Friday, there’s little else governing the next steps of the trial, except that the floor would be open to motions. Schumer declined to say what motions he’d seek, except that “the minority has rights and we’ll exercise those rights.”

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will have first dibs on next steps and can put forth his initial proposal on how he’d like to end the trial. An up-or-down vote on acquittal could take place on Saturday.

Republicans hammered the case that if they open the door to witnesses, the Senate could become a circus. Deposing witnesses and potentially heading to court if Trump exerts executive privilege would just prolong the inevitable acquittal of the president, they argue. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., has continually warned that if Democrats get Bolton, the GOP has the votes to haul in other witnesses Democrats don’t want to see, including Hunter Biden.

Opening up the witness phase would be the like “wild west” with votes on who and what would be subpoenaed, Thune said.

“It’s completely unknown territory. And there’s a lot of uncertainty and unpredictability about what might happen next,” he said.

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With swing state Sens. Cory Gardner of Colorado and Martha McSally of Arizona saying they are ready to shut down the trial, Republicans have been increasingly talking about ending the proceedings.

“It’s time to vote,” Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., said.

Westlake Legal Group Barrasso-Capitol Impeachment endgame: GOP senators eye swift conclusion to trial, say 'It’s time to vote' Marisa Schultz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article 463779c6-bdec-5db5-8f92-7fd4fb96433a   Westlake Legal Group Barrasso-Capitol Impeachment endgame: GOP senators eye swift conclusion to trial, say 'It’s time to vote' Marisa Schultz fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article 463779c6-bdec-5db5-8f92-7fd4fb96433a

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Fisherman catches strange creature off Coney Island: ‘What the hell is that?’

Westlake Legal Group Coney-Island Fisherman catches strange creature off Coney Island: 'What the hell is that?' Michael Hollan fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/great-outdoors/fishing fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article a3bc0132-4909-5a32-bbdb-a2b95b8e2347

This is a great video for people who were looking for a reason to never go in the ocean ever again.

Several people were fishing near Coney Island in New York City when they made the one-of-a-kind catch, footage shows. Based on the audio, it’s clear that these people had no idea what they caught.

WARNING: VIDEO CONTAINS EXPLICIT LANGUAGE

Nataliia Vorobok posted the footage on Tik Tok under the name Natlie1526n. According to the post, the odd-looking creature was caught while fishing in the Atlantic Ocean near Coney Island.

AVID FISHERMAN’S FAMILY HONORS HIS MEMORY BY BRINGING BOAT INTO FUNERAL HOME

The video shows the bizarre fish writhing around on the dock with what appears to be a fishing line still sticking out of its mouth. The post was viewed more than 15 million times and received thousands of comments from users, many of whom were just as stunned as the original poster.

One user described what they thought they were looking at, writing, “I thought a snake was in the process of devouring a squirrel but the lure looking thing confuses me.”

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Another user wrote, “I think a fish ate a rabbit or something and it’s still alive,” while another user compared it to the Demogorgon, the monster from the TV show “Stranger Things.”

Fortunately, others seemed to recognize the animal. One user replied, “Pretty positive that’s a type of stingray but its wings or flaps or whatever they’re called are tucked underneath.”

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Other users identified it as a clearnose skate, a type of cartilaginous fish.

Westlake Legal Group Coney-Island Fisherman catches strange creature off Coney Island: 'What the hell is that?' Michael Hollan fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/great-outdoors/fishing fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article a3bc0132-4909-5a32-bbdb-a2b95b8e2347   Westlake Legal Group Coney-Island Fisherman catches strange creature off Coney Island: 'What the hell is that?' Michael Hollan fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/great-outdoors/fishing fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article a3bc0132-4909-5a32-bbdb-a2b95b8e2347

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Mexican inmates who escaped prison linked to ‘El Chapo’, may have had help from guards

Three inmates who escaped from a prison in Mexico City this week may have gotten some help from the inside, it has emerged.

Luis Fernando Meza González, Yael Osuna Navarro and Victor Manuel Félix Beltrán – who is suspected of being the financier for Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s sons – left the facility on Wednesday, the Mexico City prosecutor’s office said.

Police in Mexico are now questioning 10 guards at the prison over whether they helped the trio escape, the BBC reports. Three guards are said to have confessed to playing a role.

INMATES ESCAPE MEXICO CITY JAIL

Westlake Legal Group mexico-prison-Getty Mexican inmates who escaped prison linked to 'El Chapo', may have had help from guards Greg Norman fox-news/world/world-regions/location-mexico fox-news/world/crime fox news fnc/world fnc f57f15e2-7380-512b-9d77-063fc57912fb article

Three inmates who escaped from a prison in Mexico City this week may have gotten some help from the inside, it has emerged.

The fugitives, according to the BBC, passed through five gates to get to the prison courtyard Wednesday before hopping into a car that was waiting nearby.

Meza González and Félix Beltrán were being held on drug charges while Osuna Navarro was in custody for alleged criminal association.

The gates at the medium-security prison had been installed after the three were transferred there from higher-security institutions, the BBC reports.

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The inmates were first reported missing during a prison check Wednesday morning.

They were facing extradition to the U.S.

Fox News’ Bradford Betz contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group mexico-prison-Getty Mexican inmates who escaped prison linked to 'El Chapo', may have had help from guards Greg Norman fox-news/world/world-regions/location-mexico fox-news/world/crime fox news fnc/world fnc f57f15e2-7380-512b-9d77-063fc57912fb article   Westlake Legal Group mexico-prison-Getty Mexican inmates who escaped prison linked to 'El Chapo', may have had help from guards Greg Norman fox-news/world/world-regions/location-mexico fox-news/world/crime fox news fnc/world fnc f57f15e2-7380-512b-9d77-063fc57912fb article

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Senate Republicans work to block witnesses

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On the roster: Senate Republicans work to block witnesses – I’ll Tell You What: Wang dang doodles – Bernie raises big off negative super PAC ad – Conservative group to air ad attacking Collins – What can a little Dolly Parton not do?

SENATE REPUBLICANS WORK TO BLOCK WITNESSES
NYT: “The White House and Senate Republicans worked aggressively on Wednesday to discount damaging revelations from John R. Bolton and line up the votes to block new witnesses from testifying in President Trump’s impeachment trial, in a push to bring the proceeding to a swift close. As the Senate opened a two-day, 16-hour period of questioning from senators, Mr. Trump laced into Mr. Bolton, his former national security adviser, whose unpublished manuscript contains an account that contradicts his impeachment defense. The president described Mr. Bolton on Twitter as a warmonger who had ‘begged’ for his job, was fired, and then wrote ‘a nasty & untrue book.’ On Capitol Hill, Mr. Trump’s aides circulated a letter informing Mr. Bolton that the White House was moving to block publication of his forthcoming book, in which he wrote that the president refused to release military aid to Ukraine until its leaders committed to investigating his political rivals.”

Bolton’s lawyer says book does not contain classified material – WaPo: “An attorney for John Bolton has pushed back against the White House’s assessment that his book manuscript contains classified material and asked for an expedited review of a chapter about Ukraine in case the former national security adviser is called to testify in the Senate impeachment trial. The Jan. 24 email to the White House from Bolton’s lawyer, Charles Cooper, was in response to a letter from the National Security Council a day earlier warning that the manuscript contained ‘significant amounts’ of classified material that could not be disclosed publicly. … He added that Bolton is ‘preparing’ for the possibility he could be called to testify in the ongoing Senate trial, writing that it was ‘imperative that we have the results of your review of that chapter as soon as possible.’”

Justice Roberts blocks Sen. Paul from naming whistleblower – Fox News: “Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts blocked Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul from posing a question during the Senate impeachment trial Wednesday that would have named the alleged whistleblower at the center of the case, Fox News is told — and Paul may try to force the issue during the question-and-answer session that begins Thursday afternoon. Roberts, for now, has ball control because he actually receives the questions in note cards from senators, then reads the question aloud in the Senate chamber to be answered by either House Democratic managers or Trump’s defense team. But Fox News has learned Roberts may soon lose his grip on the proceedings amid a torrent of criticism both inside and outside the Senate.”

The Judge’s Ruling: A primer on the separation of powers – This week Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano breaks down the separation of powers and explains how the three branches are constitutionally equal: “[James Madison] and his colleagues had just rejected a monarchy that put all the power in the hands of the king and a subservient Parliament. That system was not designed to preserve personal liberty. But the separation of powers was. It produced tension and even jealousy among the branches, and the constitutional interplay among them prevented one from dominating the other two at the price of personal freedoms. The federal government simply would not work without each branch respecting the others. And any two branches could prevent the third from usurping power. That theory animated Madison and his colleagues.” More here.

THE RULEBOOK: HEAR, HEAR
“Though we cannot acquiesce in the political heresy of the poet who says: ‘For forms of government let fools contest That which is best administered is best,’ yet we may safely pronounce, that the true test of a good government is its aptitude and tendency to produce a good administration.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 68

TIME OUT: THE ‘MASKED RIDER OF THE PLAINS’
History: “With the stirring notes of the William Tell Overture and a shout of ‘Hi-yo, Silver! Away!’ The Lone Ranger debuts on Detroit’s WXYZ radio station. The creation of station-owner George Trendle and writer Fran Striker, the ‘masked rider of the plains’ became one of the most popular and enduring western heroes of the 20th century. Joined by his trusty steed, Silver, and loyal Indian scout, Tonto, the Lone Ranger sallied forth to do battle with evil western outlaws and Indians, generally arriving on the scene just in time to save an innocent golden-haired child or sun-bonneted farm wife. Neither Trendle nor Striker had any connections to or experience with the cowboys, Indians, and pioneers of the real West, but that mattered little to them. The men simply wanted to create an American version of the masked swashbuckler made popular by the silent movie actor Douglas Fairbanks in The Mark of Zorro, arming their hero with a revolver rather than a sword.”

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SCOREBOARD
DEMOCRATIC 2020 POWER RANKI​NG
Biden: 28 points (↑ 2.4 points from last wk.)
Sanders: 23.2 points (↑ 5.4 points from last wk.)
Warren: 14.2 points (↓ 2.4 points from last wk.)
Bloomberg: 7.8 points (↑ 2.2 points from last wk.)
Buttigieg: 6.8 points (↓ 1.6 points from last wk.)
[Averages include: Quinnipiac University, ABC News/WaPo, Fox News, CNN and Monmouth University.]

TRUMP JOB PERFORMANCE 
Average approval: 44.6 percent
Average disapproval: 51.8 percent
Net Score: -7.2 percent
Change from one week ago: ↑ 1.8 points
[Average includes: Quinnipiac University: 43% approve – 52% disapprove; ABC/WaPo: 47% approve – 50% disapprove; Fox News: 45% approve – 54% disapprove; CNN: 45% approve – 51% disapprove; Monmouth University: 43% approve – 52% disapprove.]

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I’LL TELL YOU WHAT: WANG DANG DOODLES
This week Dana Perino and Chris Stirewalt discuss what impact Iowa will have on the 2020 Democrats, the latest on the impeachment trial and their predictions for what President Trump will cover in next week’s State of the Union address. Plus, Chris answers Failed Democrat Trivia. LISTEN AND SUBSCRIBE HERE

BERNIE RAISES BIG OFF NEGATIVE SUPER PAC AD
NYT: “A Democratic super PAC wanted to undermine Senator Bernie Sanders’s presidential candidacy just days before the Iowa caucuses. It may have handed him a gift instead. Mr. Sanders’s campaign said on Wednesday that it had raised more than $1.3 million since it began fund-raising the day before off a negative ad produced by the super PAC that targets Mr. Sanders by name. The ad, backed by the political action arm of the group Democratic Majority for Israel, argues that Mr. Sanders, of Vermont, would be unable to beat President Trump in the November general election, citing his heart attack nearly five months ago and his left-wing ideology as evidence that he would be too risky a choice for Iowa caucusgoers focused on winning back the White House. The ad was scheduled to begin airing in Iowa on Wednesday, but the Sanders campaign sent an email to supporters on Tuesday warning that Mr. Sanders was being targeted by negative ads and alluding to an ‘outside spending group’ without citing Democratic Majority for Israel.”

Team Biden pitches caucus night deals to Steyer, Yang – Politico: “Joe Biden and other leading candidates are actively courting lower-polling campaigns in the final days before the Iowa caucuses, hoping to forge election night alliances designed to pick up the supporters of candidates who fail to move past the first ballot. Biden’s campaign has approached at least two rival primary campaigns, seeking to broker agreements ahead of the Monday night’s caucuses, according to sources familiar with his overtures. And an aide to Tom Steyer said Wednesday that his campaign had been approached by ‘multiple candidates.’ The Biden campaign reached out to Andrew Yang staffers, according to sources familiar with the conversation, and three Biden aides also approached a senior adviser to Amy Klobuchar’s campaign, Pete Giangreco, this week about a potential deal, sources said. The New York Times first reported the meeting. In each case, the campaigns said they rebuffed advances.”

Steyer, Sanders spending big to carpet-bomb Iowa airwaves in final caucus stretch – Fox News: “Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and billionaire environmental advocate Tom Steyer are carpeting Iowa airwaves with TV ads in the final week leading up Monday’s caucuses, the first contest in the presidential nomination calendar. The two are the biggest spenders on that front in the final stretch, according to figures provided by ad-tracking firm Advertising Analytics. Steyer – the former hedge fund manager who transformed into a major political organizing player – is spending nearly $1.4 million to run ads starting Jan. 28. Sanders – the populist independent lawmaker who’s making his second straight run for the White House – is shelling out just over $1.2 million. Steyer’s using his vast wealth to bankroll his ad buys, while Sanders is dipping into his massive war chest, raised almost entirely through small-dollar grassroots contributions from supporters. Sanders raised an eye-popping $34.5 million the final three months of 2019, far ahead of the rest of his rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination.”

Bloomy’s Super Bowl ad to focus on gun violence – WaPo: “Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg, who has flooded the airways with ads attacking President Trump, is trying a different approach with a spot during the Super Bowl: His newest ad will focus on a mother whose son was shot and killed. Bloomberg, who founded the gun control group Everytown for Gun Safety, is predominantly relying on ads to propel his presidential candidacy. On Sunday — a day before the Iowa caucuses, where Bloomberg is not on the ballot — he will reach his biggest audience yet. More than 100 million people watched last year’s Super Bowl, according to Nielsen ratings. Long the domain of high-priced and highly produced commercials hyping cars and beer, this year’s game in Miami will have a dose of politics, with spots from Bloomberg and President Trump’s reelection campaign.”

CONSERVATIVE GROUP TO AIR AD ATTACKING COLLINS
Politico: “The conservative Club for Growth plans to air a massive ad campaign attacking Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), adding fuel to the intraparty battle that kicked off after the GOP congressman launched a Senate campaign this week. Collins announced Wednesday he is challenging Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.), who was sworn in this month to replace Sen. Johnny Isakson after he resigned due to health issues. Collins is a top ally to President Donald Trump, but his decision to run for Senate sparked significant blowback among some Republicans who expressed concern it could jeopardize their hold on the seat and cause problems elsewhere on the Senate map. The Club for Growth is the first group to launch an ad war aiming to knock down Collins’ image as he gears up for the statewide run. The anti-tax organization plans to spend $3 million on TV, starting next week, with issue-based ads going after Collins’ record.”

Late Rep. Elijah Cummings’ sisters endorse Mfume, Spikes in Maryland race – Baltimore Sun: “The three sisters of the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings have made endorsements in the crowded race to succeed him ― with two sisters supporting his friend, Kweisi Mfume, and one endorsing his longtime aide, Harry Spikes. According to a news release from the Mfume campaign, Cheretheria Blount and Diane Woodson have endorsed the former NAACP president in Tuesday’s special primary. ‘We stand with Kweisi 1,000 percent and will be working to ensure his victory on Election Day,’ Woodson said in a statement. Meanwhile, Yvonne Cummings endorsed Spikes, who is also supported by the late congressman’s two daughters. ‘Harry would make a great legislator,’ Yvonne Cummings told The Baltimore Sun. ‘He has the compassion for the community.’ Among the 32 candidates seeking to succeed Elijah Cummings in the 7th Congressional District are Mfume, Spikes and Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, the congressman’s widow.”

PLAY-BY-PLAY
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser to endorse BloomyWaPo

Trump administration to renew Iran sanctions waivers amid worries over US nuclear supplyFox News

Report: U.S. economy grew 2.3 percent in 2019WaPo

Hillary Clinton and lawyers refuse legal documents from Tulsi GabbardNY Post

AUDIBLE: SHOW YOUR CARDS
“There’s this mistaken assumption in politics, like we’ve got this really good message, let’s save that till the end. I don’t think there’s much empirical evidence that there’s much value in saving something that’s good.” – Ken Goldstein, a professor of politics at the University of San Francisco, talking to the NYT.

Share your color commentary: Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM and please make sure to include your name and hometown.

WHAT CAN A LITTLE DOLLY PARTON NOT DO?
Fox News: “British police jumped on the social media bandwagon Tuesday by taking part in the viral Dolly Parton Challenge, creating memes of suspects wanted for a number of offenses, including burglary. Cleveland Police UK in northeastern England shared four images of 32-year-old Scott Mizsei, deeming each appropriate for his profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram or Tinder. ‘Have you seen wanted man Scott Mizsei, 32? He is wanted in connection with a number of offences including aggravated burglary,’ the tweet said. ‘Do not approach him if you see him & call 101 with info RE his whereabouts. Thanks @DurhamPolice for inspiring our post!’ The department nodded to the Durham Constabulary in the neighboring county, which used the Dolly Parton Challenge last week… Police departments on both sides of the pond in the United Kingdom, the United States and even Canada have participated in the social media craze by sharing images of police dogs in their K9 units.”

AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“Note that the issue is not the filibuster itself. There’s nothing sacred about it. Its routine use is a modern development — with effects both contradictory and unpredictable.” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) writing in the Washington Post on Feb. 2, 2017.

Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.

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Swipe at Romney? Utah lawmaker introduces bill to recall US senators

Republican Utah state Rep. Tim Quinn has introduced a bill in that state’s legislature that would allow voters to recall U.S. senators — a possible swipe at Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, despite Quinn saying the bill isn’t targeted at anyone in particular.

First reported by Deseret News, the bill would create a process by which a recall vote could go on the ballot after a petition by voters.

“I know that’s what’s going to be the narrative,” Quinn told the Deseret News when asked if the bill was aimed at Romney, the sitting GOP senator whose current term doesn’t expire until 2025. “If it were, then it might make sense to have a sunset on it. That would not be the case.”

Westlake Legal Group QUINNT Swipe at Romney? Utah lawmaker introduces bill to recall US senators Tyler Olson fox-news/us/us-regions/west/utah fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/person/mitt-romney fox news fnc/politics fnc c3632ebe-00b2-5f94-a8e6-367ebd11693b article

Utah state Rep. Tim Quinn introduced H.B. 217, legislation that would allow the state’s voters to recall their senators in the middle of their terms.

SEAN HANNITY WARNS ROMNEY AS POLL SHOWS PITFALLS OF IMPEACHMENT WITNESS DRIVE

“Six years is a long time,” he said, according to the Deseret News.

Romney has been under pressure from Republicans for his seeming willingness to buck President Trump, especially amid impeachment proceedings. Specifically, Romney has been open to hearing witnesses in Trump’s Senate impeachment trial at a time when most Republicans are in favor of a fast acquittal of the president.

The proposed bar for putting a recall vote on a ballot is quite high, requiring the signatures of 25 percent of “the number of active voters in the state.” In addition, senators could not be recalled within the first year of their term, within a year of winning a recall election or within a year of the end of their term.

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The bill, if passed, would likely face a constitutional challenge.

An Arkansas effort to impose term limits on its representatives was struck down by the Supreme Court in 1995, with the majority opinion saying that states are not authorized to add requirements for individuals to qualify for federal office — specifically, in that case, not having served in that body for a certain amount of time. Requiring senators to avoid a recall to keep their seats might run afoul of that same principle.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6125374791001_6125369118001-vs Swipe at Romney? Utah lawmaker introduces bill to recall US senators Tyler Olson fox-news/us/us-regions/west/utah fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/person/mitt-romney fox news fnc/politics fnc c3632ebe-00b2-5f94-a8e6-367ebd11693b article   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6125374791001_6125369118001-vs Swipe at Romney? Utah lawmaker introduces bill to recall US senators Tyler Olson fox-news/us/us-regions/west/utah fox-news/politics/senate fox-news/person/mitt-romney fox news fnc/politics fnc c3632ebe-00b2-5f94-a8e6-367ebd11693b article

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