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Westlake Legal Group > article (Page 40)

Melissa Francis presses White House spokesman on claim some Senate Republicans could support impeachment

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113768079001_6113763808001-vs Melissa Francis presses White House spokesman on claim some Senate Republicans could support impeachment fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/delaware fox-news/shows/outnumbered-overtime fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate/republicans fox-news/politics/senate/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 4e1c7dde-b7dd-5596-85ed-a8f563a27d8b

Fox News Channel host Melissa Francis pressed a White House spokesman on a Democratic senator’s claim there are some Republicans in the chamber who are considering supporting the impeachment of President Trump.

On Friday’s “Outnumbered Overtime,” Francis played a CNN clip in which Sen. Christopher Coons of Delaware claimed Senate Democrats will be counting on a handful of Republicans to support their cause.

“We will be relying on a small number of Republicans who are pushing back against this idea — who recognize that impeachment is a serious, significant constitutional moment,” he said.

“There are, I believe, a few Republicans who recognize that what President Trump did here was demonstrably impeachable,” the former New Castle County executive continued.

Democrats will need some Republicans to vote with them in order to convict or remove the president from office if the impeachment process makes it to the Senate.

RETIREE CALLED ‘DAMN LIAR’ BY BIDEN SAYS HE JUST WANTED EX-VP TO ‘ANSWER THE HARD STUFF’ ABOUT UKRAINE, OTHER TOPICS

In turn, Francis asked Deputy White House Press Secretary Hogan Gidley if it was true that some Republicans may be waffling on the issue.

“We’ve already had a vote in the House,” Gidley responded.

Francis then asked if he is confident the Senate will act similarly.

“If it goes there, [Trump] wants a trial,” Gidley said.

In response, Francis pressed further: “But, are there Republican senators who are wavering?”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“Democrats want this fight — it’s something the president is willing to have,” the aide responded. “Not to my knowledge,” he later said, in regard to Coons’ claim.

Gidley said Trump has met with “hundreds” of congressional representatives and many Senate Republicans — asserting that they are all on board with opposing impeachment.

“This process is a sham,” he said, adding that it is Democrats who should be concerned because of the numerous freshmen lawmakers in that party who won seats in Trump-friendly districts in 2018.

He also criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., for ignoring the USMCA trade deal currently languishing on her desk, as well as legislation that he said would help all Americans — like infrastructure funding and prescription pharmaceutical reform.

Pelosi, he claimed, is only interested in concentrating her power and taking back the White House.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113768079001_6113763808001-vs Melissa Francis presses White House spokesman on claim some Senate Republicans could support impeachment fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/delaware fox-news/shows/outnumbered-overtime fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate/republicans fox-news/politics/senate/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 4e1c7dde-b7dd-5596-85ed-a8f563a27d8b   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113768079001_6113763808001-vs Melissa Francis presses White House spokesman on claim some Senate Republicans could support impeachment fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/delaware fox-news/shows/outnumbered-overtime fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/senate/republicans fox-news/politics/senate/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 4e1c7dde-b7dd-5596-85ed-a8f563a27d8b

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Rosie O’Donnell defends law professor over Barron Trump joke: ‘I don’t think she did anything wrong’

Westlake Legal Group rosie-odonnell-Getty Rosie O’Donnell defends law professor over Barron Trump joke: ‘I don’t think she did anything wrong’ Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/rosie-odonnell fox-news/person/melania-trump fox-news/entertainment/the-view fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 69b22102-a373-5d19-aeea-93b6ea14cace

Rosie O’Donnell does not think Stanford Law Professor Pamela Karlan owed the First Family an apology after she made a joke about the president’s son at a House Judiciary Committee impeachment hearing this week.

O’Donnell, 58, said Karlan’s words were “taken out of context.” Karlan initially received backlash on Wednesday for using Barron Trump’s first name as an example while discussing the Constitution.

ROSIE O’DONNELL AND ELIZABETH ROONEY CALL OFF ENGAGEMENT

Karlan said on Wednesday: “The Constitution says there can be no titles of nobility, so while the president can name his son Barron, he can’t make him a baron.”

O’Donnell defended the professor, saying to TMZ: “I don’t think that she did anything wrong. She was trying to say that he’s not a king. You could have a child named Barron but he can’t make him a baron.

ROSIE O’DONNELL GETS CANDID ABOUT HER FEUD WITH WHOOPI GOLDBERG ON ‘THE VIEW’: ‘SHE WOULD JUST SIT THERE’

“She was trying to say that he’s not a king,” the former “View” co-host added.

O’Donnell then continued to bash President Trump, calling him a “terrible human” and a “cruel man.”

On Thursday, “The View” co-hosts debated over Karlan’s words.

‘THE VIEW’ DISHES ON TWITTER FEUD BETWEEN THE CONWAYS, SUNNY HOSTIN PREDICTS A DIVORCE

“Maybe they missed this part but she was not speaking about the child,” Whoopi Goldberg said. “She was speaking about his name and how it played into what he could not do. He cannot take a title. She was not being disrespectful or nasty.”

Melania Trump responded on Twitter to Karlan name-dropping her 13-year-old son.

ROSIE O’DONNELL RAILS AGAINST BIDEN’S CANDIDACY: ‘YOUR TIME HAS PASSED’

“A minor child deserves privacy and should be kept out of politics. Pamela Karlan, you should be ashamed of your very angry and obviously biased public pandering, and using a child to do it,” the first lady wrote.

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O’Donnell said to TMZ that the nation is in trouble.

“The democracy itself is at stake. So if this is not impeachable, what is impeachable?”

Westlake Legal Group rosie-odonnell-Getty Rosie O’Donnell defends law professor over Barron Trump joke: ‘I don’t think she did anything wrong’ Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/rosie-odonnell fox-news/person/melania-trump fox-news/entertainment/the-view fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 69b22102-a373-5d19-aeea-93b6ea14cace   Westlake Legal Group rosie-odonnell-Getty Rosie O’Donnell defends law professor over Barron Trump joke: ‘I don’t think she did anything wrong’ Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/rosie-odonnell fox-news/person/melania-trump fox-news/entertainment/the-view fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 69b22102-a373-5d19-aeea-93b6ea14cace

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Group condemns ‘soldier Santa’ holding ‘God bless America’ sign at Army base

A blow-up Santa Claus on an Army base is deflating holiday cheer for promoting Christianity, an activist group complains.

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) founder and president, Mikey Weinstein, condemns the display in the commissary at Fort Belvoir in Fairfax County, Va.

ARMY SAYS FAITH-BASED GROUP CAN NO LONGER PUT BIBLE VERSES ON DOG TAGS AFTER COMPLAINT

“I can’t make this sh-t up,” Weinstein told Crooks and Liars this week, pointing out the Santa is wearing a military uniform that says “Christmas Force,” is next to a sign that says “God bless America,” and one thing he says you can’t see in the photo.

Westlake Legal Group BlowupSanta Group condemns 'soldier Santa' holding 'God bless America' sign at Army base fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/virginia fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox news fnc/us fnc Caleb Parke article 8da46bec-57c7-5227-b5b8-3c184207aa48 /FOX NEWS/LIFESTYLE/OCCASIONS/Holiday

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation complained about this display on a military base for promoting Christianity. (Military Religious Freedom Foundation)

“Almost all the complainants—like the lead one that came to us on this— have been through mandatory situations where they’ve been forced to engage in blessing for Jesus Christ,” he added. “It’s always one faith, always it’s Christianity.”

BROOKLYN TEACHER SACKED AFTER TELLING FIRST GRADERS THAT SANTA AND TOOTH FAIRY AREN’T REAL

First Liberty Institute lawyer and director of military affairs, Mike Berry, told Fox News Weinstein’s complaint is just a bunch of hot air.

“It appears Mikey Weinstein thinks an inflatable Santa Clause is an actual military officer who speaks for the government,” Berry said. “Even if that were true, service members are permitted to say ‘God Bless America,’ just as the Commander-in-Chief does on a routine basis.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

MRFF claims an Army officer, who served in Afghanistan, sent them an email complaining about the display.

“This image of Santa in a military uniform with the words ‘God Bless America’ imply that the military is a Christian religious organization, which is false and degrading to all soldiers,” the officer wrote. “Although I was raised a Christian, was baptized, and underwent confirmation at a Methodist church, I was disgusted to see this nonsecular image at the commissary.”

Westlake Legal Group BlowupSanta Group condemns 'soldier Santa' holding 'God bless America' sign at Army base fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/virginia fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox news fnc/us fnc Caleb Parke article 8da46bec-57c7-5227-b5b8-3c184207aa48 /FOX NEWS/LIFESTYLE/OCCASIONS/Holiday   Westlake Legal Group BlowupSanta Group condemns 'soldier Santa' holding 'God bless America' sign at Army base fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/virginia fox-news/us/military/army fox-news/us/military fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox news fnc/us fnc Caleb Parke article 8da46bec-57c7-5227-b5b8-3c184207aa48 /FOX NEWS/LIFESTYLE/OCCASIONS/Holiday

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‘Star Trek’ actor Robert Walker Jr. dead at 79

Robert Walker Jr., best known for a classic early Star Trek episode and as the son of Hollywood stars Robert Walker and Jennifer Jones, died Thursday in Malibu, according to family members. He was 79.

The New York native portrayed the twitchy, callow title character in “Charlie X,” the second episode of Star Trek’s pioneering first season in 1966, and also handled the title role of the notable 1960s feature films Ensign Pulver and Young Billy Young.

LEONARD GOLDBERG DIES: VETERAN FILM & TV EXEC AND ‘BLUE BLOODS’ & ‘CHARLIE’S ANGELS’ CREATOR WAS 85

For Ensign Pulver, the comedic 1964 naval drama, Walker inherited a role that had earned Jack Lemmon an Oscar for best supporting actor for Mister Roberts (1955). In the 1969 gunfighter tale Young Billy Young, Walker was the volatile outlaw who finds a mentor in Robert Mitchum in film that also featured Angie Dickinson and David Carradine. That same year Walker and his wife, Ellie Wood, appeared together in the milestone counter-culture epic Easy Rider.

Walker’s other big-screen credits include The Hook (1963), with Kirk Douglas;  The Ceremony (1963), with Laurence Harvey;  The War Wagon (1967), with John Wayne; Killers Three (1968), with Dick Clark; and Road to Salina (1970), with Rita Hayworth.

Westlake Legal Group robertwalker 'Star Trek' actor Robert Walker Jr. dead at 79 Geoff Boucher fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fnc/entertainment fnc Deadline b018862d-81bb-53ac-bc22-4b55cf65b39f article

Robert Walker, Jr. as Charlie Evans in the STAR TREK episode, “Charlie X.” Season 1, episode, 2. Original air date, September 15, 1966. (CBS via Getty Images)

On television his career spanned 20 years and his many credits included roles on Route 66, Ben Casey, Combat!, Bonanza, The Time Tunnel, The Six Million Dollar Man, Quincy, M.E.,Charlie’s Angels, Columbo, CHiPs, L.A. Law, and Murder, She Wrote.

HOLLYWOOD AND FANS PAY TRIBUTE TO ‘WILL & GRACE’S SHELLEY MORRISON

It was his role in Federation space, however, that earned Walker his most lasting screen legacy. Walker was 26 when he played the callow 17-year-old Charlie Evans, aka Charlie X, on the second episode of Gene Roddenberry’s sci-fi series for NBC. The petulant Charlie came aboard the USS Enterprise as a rescued castaway who survived 14 solitary years amid the wreckage of a downed transport ship.  The memorable episode, penned by D.C. Fontana, takes a dark turn when the orphaned teen’s dangerous secret and formidable mental powers are revealed.

JOAN STALEY DIES: ‘THE GHOST AND MR. CHICKEN’ & ’77 SUNSET STRIP’ ACTRESS WAS 79

Walker was born in Queens in April of 1940, the year after his father (best remembered as Alfred Hitchcock’s off-kilter killer in the 1951 classic Strangers on a Train) and his mother (the Academy Award-winner from The Song of Bernadette in 1943) were married. The marriage ended in 1945. Four years later, the youngster got a powerful stepfather when Jones married David O. Selznick, the Hollywood titan who produced Gone with the Wind and Rebecca.

This story originally appeared in Deadline

Westlake Legal Group robertwalker 'Star Trek' actor Robert Walker Jr. dead at 79 Geoff Boucher fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fnc/entertainment fnc Deadline b018862d-81bb-53ac-bc22-4b55cf65b39f article   Westlake Legal Group robertwalker 'Star Trek' actor Robert Walker Jr. dead at 79 Geoff Boucher fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fnc/entertainment fnc Deadline b018862d-81bb-53ac-bc22-4b55cf65b39f article

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Con man arrested in Russia after allegedly building fake border posts for migrant workers

A con man was arrested by Russian authorities for allegedly constructing fake border posts designed to trick migrant workers into believing they had entered Finland — when in fact they had entered the Russian town of Vyborg.

The unidentified man promised migrant workers he could smuggle them into the European Union, erecting mock border posts and charging four men from South Asia over $10,000 each to supposedly enter Finland, an EU member country, the Russian FSB border guard service said on Wednesday.

The four Asian men were eventually stopped by real border guards, who informed them they were still in Russia.

MORE THAN 50 POLAR BEARS OVERRUN FAR-NORTH RUSSIAN VILLAGE

Westlake Legal Group finland-russia-border-iStock Con man arrested in Russia after allegedly building fake border posts for migrant workers fox-news/world/world-regions/russia fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/world fox-news/topic/the-european-union fox news fnc/world fnc David Aaro da3d0e8b-6d90-57ff-a821-f24377287fca article

No entry sign at border zone between Finland and Russia

“The man never planned to carry out his promises,” Interfax news agency said, according to The Guardian.

He installed fake posts marking the border between Russia and Finland and led the men on a complicated route by car and on foot — even marching along a lake where he brought an inflatable boat “just in case.”

The man planned to tell the migrants they were in Finland when they traveled past his constructed fence post, according to the outlet.

HOUSE DEMOCRAT SAYS TRUMP ‘ANSWERS TO VLADIMIR PUTIN; NOT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE

The migrants were detained on Nov. 28 and on Wednesday a court in St Petersburg fined them for immigration offenses and ordered their deportation. Video released by Russian authorities reportedly showed the men standing in the dark with their hands in the air.

The fake smuggler was also detained and is facing a more serious charge of fraud, pending a trial, according to The Guardian.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“The incredible adventure of the foreigners in the night-time quiet of the Vyborg woods ended with a decision of the Vyborg district court,” the FSB statement said.

The two countries share a border of roughly 833 miles.

Westlake Legal Group finland-russia-border-iStock Con man arrested in Russia after allegedly building fake border posts for migrant workers fox-news/world/world-regions/russia fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/world fox-news/topic/the-european-union fox news fnc/world fnc David Aaro da3d0e8b-6d90-57ff-a821-f24377287fca article   Westlake Legal Group finland-russia-border-iStock Con man arrested in Russia after allegedly building fake border posts for migrant workers fox-news/world/world-regions/russia fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/world fox-news/topic/the-european-union fox news fnc/world fnc David Aaro da3d0e8b-6d90-57ff-a821-f24377287fca article

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For Biden, it’s always Iowa

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113760704001_6113759076001-vs For Biden, it’s always Iowa fox-news/columns/fox-news-halftime-report fox news fnc/politics fnc Chris Stirewalt article 09b1efa0-d8e4-57d2-bf38-47c2fca1dbc8

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On the roster: For Biden, it’s always Iowa – How Harris drove Democrats off a cliff – Boffo jobs report boosts GOP hopes – Trump faces deadline today on hearings – Honked off

FOR BIDEN, IT’S ALWAYS IOWA
It’s always Iowa.

Joe Biden has thrice sought the presidency and each time, Iowa has been a rocky shoal. In 1988 it was at the Iowa State Fair where he plagiarized the lines of a British politician and it was a fifth-place finish in the Iowa Caucuses in 2008 that drove Biden from the race.

This time it is Biden’s “No Malarkey” tour of the Hawkeye State that threatens to at last strip him of front-runner status.

We are not here talking about Biden chomping on his wife’s digits or even his bouts of confusion. Those things are status quo for Biden who is unquestionably a weird dude. Whether you find them endearing or disturbing, Biden’s penchants for unusual physical contact and ginormous gaffes are well known.

Biden’s real boo-boo in Iowa this time was lashing out at a voter who was trying to troll the former vice president at a campaign event in New Hampton.

When the man accused Biden of corruption related to the lucrative contract with a Ukrainian energy company his son, Hunter, won by trading on his family name, Biden blew his top. “You’re a damn liar, man,” Biden said.

But Biden, 77, took particular umbrage at his questioner’s suggestion that he was too old. “You want to check my shape?” Biden demanded. “Let’s do push-ups together, man. Let’s run. Let’s do whatever you want to do. Let’s take an IQ test.”

A little bit of righteous anger is a good thing for a candidate. South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg does well, for example, when he lets his goody-two-shoes shtick drop a bit. Nobody wants a president who’s that Episcopalian. But Biden has a different set of problems.

In 1987 Biden had a similar run-in with a voter who asked him how he had placed in his law school class. “I think I probably have a much higher IQ than you do, I suspect. I went to law school on a full academic scholarship,” Biden snapped. “I’d be delighted to sit down and compare my IQ to yours if you’d like.”

Almost no voter alive today would remember much, if anything, about Biden’s woe-begotten past presidential runs. They’re more likely to remember the kindly, folksy, avuncular character that the Obama campaign and administration helped create.

The Joe Biden America knew before 2008, insofar as it knew him at all, was a quick-tempered, vain politician. They remembered the guy from the Anita Hill hearings.

Biden has worked hard in his 2020 run to maintain his “Uncle Joe” persona. He is Barack Obama’s friend, and your friend too, America. But as we draw closer to the election and as threats to his candidacy multiply – first from Buttigieg and now from former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg – Biden has had to leave the bubble a bit.

And now Biden faces the additional threat from potentially being one of six on this month’s debate stage rather than part of the cast of thousands that have appeared in what have passed for debates so far this cycle.

If Biden finally does founder it would be fitting that it would, as ever, be because of Iowa.

HOW HARRIS DROVE DEMOCRATS OFF A CLIFF
Politico: “Kamala Harris was hosting a town hall in her hometown of Oakland, Calif., two years ago when she made an announcement that set off a mad scramble in the U.S. Senate. ‘Here, I’ll break some news,’ Harris told hundreds of people packed into the sanctuary at Beebe Memorial Church on Aug. 30. ‘I intend to co-sponsor the ‘[Medicare] for All’ bill because it’s just the right thing to do,’ she said… By Sept. 13 – just two weeks after Harris’ town hall – all of them… surrounded Sanders at a Capitol Hill news conference and talked about how ‘proud’ they were to co-sponsor his legislation to upend the health care industry. … Harris equivocated after her initial declaration, reinforcing nagging questions about her core beliefs. She dropped out of the race on Tuesday. The only person who hasn’t budged is Sanders himself. The story of the embrace and then retreat from single-payer closely tracks the arc of the Democratic Party since Donald Trump’s election.”

Continetti: Medicare for All, the campaign killer – Free Beacon: “Once thought to be the fulfillment of the age-old dream of universal health care, Medicare for All is more like one of those ingenious Acme devices Wile E. Coyote uses to catch the Road Runner. It’s a catapult that launches you into the stratosphere. And right into a wall.”

Booker, Castro complain about not being in debate – Politico: “Cory Booker and Julián Castro are taking aim at the Democratic National Committee over a primary process they say is excluding them from debates but allowing a billionaire to buy his way on to the stage. California Sen. Kamala Harris’ abrupt departure from the 2020 race Tuesday has exposed the lack of diversity among the remaining group of top candidates. Despite falling from the top tier, Harris was the leading candidate of color and the only minority candidate to qualify for the Dec. 19 debate in Los Angeles. … The Booker and Castro campaigns say Harris’ announcement triggered an outpouring of financial support for them. … But that momentum is unlikely to earn them a lectern at the upcoming debate, as both candidates have little chance of reaching the 4 percent threshold in four approved polls before next Thursday’s deadline.”

Dems face impeachment balancing act – WaPo: “Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker are considering tele-town halls so they can beam into early-voting state campaign events. Advisers to Bernie Sanders hope his star supporter, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), will stand in for him in Iowa. And Amy Klobuchar is preparing to scramble onto late-night flights while sending a small army of supporters to campaign in her stead. The likely Senate impeachment trial of President Trump, expected to dominate the first half of January, is scrambling plans for the sizable number of Democratic presidential candidates who, as senators, will be required to sit as jurors — taking them away from the final sprint of campaigning before voting begins Feb. 3 in Iowa. The convergence of impeachment proceedings and presidential politics is without precedent, with five of the 15 contenders for the Democratic nomination looking for creative ways to remain in the mix in early-voting states while spending most of their time back in Washington.”

THE RULEBOOK: IF YOU KNOW, THEN YOU KNOW 
“Those who can best discern the intrinsic difficulty of the thing, will be least hasty in condemning that opinion, and will be most inclined to allow due weight to the arguments which may be supposed to have produced it.” – Alexander HamiltonFederalist No. 65

TIME OUT: ‘SINCE WE’RE TOGETHER, WE MIGHT AS WELL SAY…’
Psychologist Adelia Moore on what parents can learn from Fred RogersThe Atlantic: “Children’s demands for attention can be grating, especially in the middle of the night or as a work deadline nears. … But as Mister Rogers knew, attention is at the heart of human relationships. Children benefit from the attention grown-ups give them in ordinary, everyday ways as well as harder moments when they are struggling. … The ubiquity of screens has made attention scarcer than ever, but children need it just as much as they always have. When parents pay attention to their children as Mister Rogers did — with genuine curiosity — they tend to focus more on what is happening between them and their children, and less on their own stresses and to-do lists. If they can establish a pattern of responsiveness, they can do what Mister Rogers did with his sweater, shoes, and song, and build up the sense of security that kids need to thrive.”

Flag on the play? – Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM with your tips, comments or questions.

SCOREBOARD
DEMOCRATIC 2020 POWER RANKING
Biden: 26 points (no change in points)
Warren: 19.4 points (no change in points)
Sanders: 17.2 points (no change in points)
Buttigieg: 10.2 points (no change in points)
[Averages include: Quinnipiac University, CNN, Monmouth University, NBC News/WSJ and ABC News/WaPo.]

TRUMP JOB PERFORMANCE 
Average approval: 43 percent
Average disapproval: 52.8 percent
Net Score: -9.8 percent
Change from one week ago: no change in points
[Average includes: Quinnipiac University: 40% approve – 54% disapprove; CNN: 43% approve – 53% disapprove; NPR/PBS/Marist: 44% approve – 51% disapprove; Gallup: 43% approve – 54% disapprove; Monmouth University: 45% approve – 52% disapprove.]

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BOFFO JOBS REPORT BOOSTS GOP HOPES
WaPo: “The United States added 266,000 jobs in November as the jobless rate decreased to 3.5 percent, reflecting a surge of strength in the labor market that has muscled through recession fears that flared over the summer. The data, released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, beat expectations. Analysts had forecast roughly 180,000 new jobs for the month. The 3.5 percent unemployment rate is back at a 50-year low. The jobs data offer the latest snapshot into an economy that appears to have lost some steam from 2018 but continues to grow. Heading into President Trump’s fourth year in office, the labor market remains one of the economy’s biggest engines, and Trump regularly touts the low unemployment rate as one of his top achievements. ‘Looking at the high number of jobs that were added in November, you might forget that the story for most of this year was that the economy was slowing down,’ Indeed Hiring Lab research director Nick Bunker wrote in an analysis of the data Friday.”

SENATE GOP PUMPS BREAKS ON WILD TRIAL IDEAS
Politico: “Senate Republicans are beginning to deliver a reality check to the president and House Republicans that there are limits to what they can do. ‘You got two different bodies here,’ [Lindsey Graham], a stalwart Trump ally, told reporters on Thursday. ‘Are we going to start calling House members over here when we don’t like what they say or do? I don’t think so.’ Senate GOP leaders have signaled they intend to defend Trump wholeheartedly, but they’re also loath to let the upper chamber descend into chaos or divide their caucus ahead of a tough 2020 cycle. And even if Senate Republicans wanted to embrace the hard-line posture of the House, the party’s narrow majority makes that all but impossible under Senate rules. Calling controversial witnesses will require near lockstep party unity from 51 of the 53 Senate Republicans to make any procedural maneuvers, a tough task given the diverse views in the GOP, according to senators and aides.”

Trump faces deadline today on hearings – WaPo: “President Trump faces a 5 p.m. deadline Friday to announce whether he intends to have a lawyer participate in the remaining impeachment proceedings before the House Judiciary Committee, as Democrats accelerate their attempt to remove him from office. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) directed committee chairmen Thursday to begin the process of drafting articles of impeachment against Trump, with many Democrats anticipating that a full House vote could come before Christmas. At the heart of the Democrats’ case is the allegation that Trump tried to leverage a White House meeting and military aid, sought by Ukraine in the face of Russian military aggression, to pressure President Volodymyr Zelensky to launch an investigation of former vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden… In a bid to bolster the argument that Trump is facing a ‘partisan impeachment,’ his campaign manager, Brade Parscale, tweeted a two-decade-old video of Biden protesting Republican efforts to oust then-President Bill Clinton.”

Pelosi’s impeachment leap  NYT: “For months, Ms. [Nancy] Pelosi had resisted calls for impeachment. … People close to the speaker say that she has said privately what she often says publicly: She has never been eager to impeach the president. She worried that vulnerable moderates would lose their seats, that it would tear the country apart. And it was a distraction from the poll-tested agenda Democrats had campaigned on: lowering the cost of prescription drugs, raising the minimum wage, fighting corruption and gun violence. … How Ms. Pelosi got to ‘where we are today’ is in part the story of her sense of timing, her methodical approach to decision making and her ability to read the sensibilities and political needs of her fractious and often unruly caucus. As Washington’s most powerful Democrat, she is the only lawmaker in the Capitol who can, and routinely does, go toe to toe with the president.”

DEMS SWOON FOR BULLOCK SENATE RUN
Politico: “Washington Democrats are no longer pining for Beto O’Rourke. They’re far more infatuated with another ousted presidential candidate: Steve Bullock. O’Rourke has just three days before the Texas filing deadline to decide whether he wants to run against incumbent GOP Sen. John Cornyn. Yet many Senate Democrats aren’t sure O’Rourke would even be the strongest Senate candidate at this point after running to the left in his presidential run… Instead, Democrats are all about Bullock, even though the Montana governor has tried to squash talk of a Senate run every chance he gets — the latest on Wednesday when he said in Montana, ‘that’s just not what I want to do.’ But even as party officials are desperate for Bullock to run, they’re taking a soft approach for fear going too hard would backfire. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he hasn’t talked to Bullock or O’Rourke… Still, Democratic senators are publicly encouraging Bullock to join their club.”

AUDIBLE: ANSWER THE PHONE!
“Let me be more blunt: When your caller ID says it’s a pollster calling, pick up.” – Cory Booker said to supporters in Iowa, per Politico. Booker still hasn’t qualified for the next Democratic debate.

ANY GIVEN SUNDAY
This weekend Mr. Sunday will sit down with Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., live from the Reagan National Defense Forum in Simi Valley, California. Watch “Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace.” Check local listings for broadcast times in your area.

#mediabuzz – Host Howard Kurtz has the latest take on the week’s media coverage. Watch #mediabuzz Sundays at 11 a.m. ET. 

FROM THE BLEACHERS
“Is it possible the Dem’s rush to impeach has as much to do with Biden as Trump? Could it be they know he is a weak, tainted candidate and exposure is better before early primaries than later – leaving space for a more viable candidate to gain ground?  Locking in to Biden could be very damaging to their 2020 prospects.” – Sheila Willis, Toronto, Canada

[Ed. note: Without delving into the particulars of your accusation, Ms. Willis, let me offer this general advice for political observers: We all, regardless of party or sect, tend to attribute excessive wickedness and competency to our rivals. The misperception of wickedness is understandable since we would like to always think of ourselves and our fellows as the most virtuous. But the misperception of excessive cunning is because we never would like to think of our team losing in a fair fight. It is true that sometimes politicians pull off complicated, strategic maneuvers informed by great foresight. But that almost never happens. Almost everything you see in politics and government is the result of short-term thinking born of necessity.]

“…yesterday you wrote the word ‘allegation’ when referring to Dems impeachment push, but wrote ‘unfounded theory’ (not that I myself am a believer) when it comes to the Ukraine interference possibility. That is the definition of an allegation. Unsubstantiated yes, but an allegation. My God, with the absence of an actual witness, it is the impeachment accusations that are unfounded theories. … By this time last election cycle Halftime was providing updates on the various races for house and senate. Although I skimmed these then, where are they now?” – Anthony LoRe, Whitestone, N.Y.

[Ed. note: Oh how we would rather be doing Senate race ratings, Mr. LoRe! We love maps and charts and lists. It’s kind of our jam. But a couple of things: First, impeachment is just a huge, massively consequential story. We don’t have any idea what the near or long-term political ramifications will be (and neither does anyone else), so we have to stay on the story. Second, in a quadrennial presidential election, down-ballot races tend to be much more dependent on the national political climate. It’s almost impossible to say with useful exactitude which races will be competitive – beyond a few obvious ones – until we know the shape of the presidential contest. We will soon enough be doling out plenty for you to skim, though. As for the word choices you find objectionable, those were from the WaPo. When you’re trying to lead with breaking news, sometimes you have to accept imprecision from sources. I wouldn’t have used the loaded ‘unfounded theory,’ but c’est la vie.]     

“I haven’t seen you discuss Sturgill’s new record that just came out. ‘Sound and Fury’ is by far his most rock-n-roll album to date. I can’t stop listening to it. I remember you discussing ‘A Sailor’s Guide to Earth,’ a few years ago. I thought your readers may want to check out this amazing record to take their collective minds off of the absolute sh*t-show that is happening in Washington right now. Right or Left, it’s just depressing to see what’s going on in our Capital. However, we’re Americans and this too shall pass. Merry Christmas.” – Patrick Wittbrodt II, Flint, Mich. 

[Ed. note: A battlefield commission for the Army of the Level-Headed for you, Brevet Col. Wittbrodt of the Old Northwest Division. Tippecanoe would be proud. As for Sturgill Simpson’s roadhouse rockabilly turn, I am a fan! “Sing Along” kicks ass. But I also thing he’s making a point. Listen to “Make Art Not Friends.” He sings, “Think I’m gonna just stay home and make art, not friends. I love saying ‘No’ to all the ‘Yes’ men just to see the look on their face.” Great artists sometimes have to defy expectations and conventions in order to retain their creative power. I think of David Bowie, the Coen brothers and Dave Chappelle and so many other great creators who were willing to blow up their brands rather than seek commercial success by replicating past successes. There’s a lot to be said for giving the people what they want, but for a handful of truly gifted artists, the quest for creativity outstrips the need to please. My hat is off to Mr. Simpson in a big way.]    

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

HONKED OFF
KSL: “Utah Department of Transportation spokesman John Gleason had never seen anything like it. A video taken on I-15 in Lehi shows a man playing a trumpet while he’s behind the wheel, with both of his hands on the instrument and both eyes looking at the sheet music in his lap, with the car speeding forward the entire time. The video is only a few seconds long but has gone viral on social media. … Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Nick Street said there is technically no law against what the man was doing, but officers do have discretion to pull over unsafe drivers and would most likely advise him not to do it. Street also said there is a way the driver could have been arrested. ‘If they commit one or two moving violations while playing the trumpet with two hands going down the roadway, they would be in violation of the careless driving statute,’ Street says.”

AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“But there is a problem with a clone. It is not really you. It is but a twin, a perfect John Doe Jr., but still a junior. With its own independent consciousness, it is, alas, just a facsimile of you.” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) writing in Time magazine on June 24, 2001.

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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Jillian Michaels says political correctness is ‘glamorizing’ obesity

Westlake Legal Group jillian-michaels-wide Jillian Michaels says political correctness is 'glamorizing' obesity Tyler McCarthy fox-news/entertainment/genres/diet-fitness fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 72e16469-56a9-5df3-b4e2-3e5ab2f1353d

Jillian Michaels says the body positivity movement and political correctness are posing a potential health crisis in America.

The trainer, 45, spoke with Women’s Health U.K. ahead of the January relaunch of “The Biggest Loser” where she candidly discussed her concerns that being too accepting of obesity can pose a problem for society in the long run.

JILLIAN MICHAELS SLAMS THE KETO DIET: ‘BAD PLAN FOR A MILLION REASONS’

“I think we’re politically correct to the point of endangering people. Yes, we want to be inclusive of everyone [and respect that] everyone comes in all different shapes and size,” she told the outlet. “That nobody should ever be body shamed or fat-shamed or excluded and that everyone is equally deserving and should feel equally valuable. But obesity in itself is not something that should be glamorized. But we’ve become so politically correct that no one wants to say it.”

Michaels went on to note that she believes “The Biggest Loser” was a victim of this culture. After airing from 2004-2016, the show took a four-year break and is only just now coming back.

“I think the world has shifted to a place where that format and messaging is considered fat-shaming. But it isn’t, and it’s not meant to be. Now we’ve gone so far in the opposite direction,” Michaels explained.

For those unfamiliar, the reality competition series took obese contestants who wanted to lose weight and puts them through a difficult workout and diet regimen in the hopes of being the person to lose the most weight by the end of the competition.

JENNA JAMESON GAINS 20 POUNDS AFTER DITCHING KETO DIET: ‘I DECIDED TO LIVE MY BEST CARBY LIFE’

The fitness trainer caught some heat for her controversial opinions in January when she unequivocally came out against the ketogenic diet, which has a growing trend after celebrities such as Jenna Jameson and Halle Berry spoke out in support of the lifestyle. The diet requires people to be on a very low-carb and high-fat eating plan that Michaels said is an overall bad move.

“I don’t understand. Like, why would anyone think this is a good idea,” Michaels said in a Women’s Health video.

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“Your cells, your macromolecules, are literally made up of protein, fat, carbohydrates, nucleic acids. When you do not eat one of the three macronutrients — those three things I just mentioned — you’re starving yourselves,” Michaels continued. “Those macronutrients serve a very important purpose for your overall health and wellbeing. Each and every one of them.”

Westlake Legal Group jillian-michaels-wide Jillian Michaels says political correctness is 'glamorizing' obesity Tyler McCarthy fox-news/entertainment/genres/diet-fitness fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 72e16469-56a9-5df3-b4e2-3e5ab2f1353d   Westlake Legal Group jillian-michaels-wide Jillian Michaels says political correctness is 'glamorizing' obesity Tyler McCarthy fox-news/entertainment/genres/diet-fitness fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 72e16469-56a9-5df3-b4e2-3e5ab2f1353d

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Moment deaf baby hears mom’s voice after hearing aids switched on

4-month-old baby girl who was born deaf lights up with joy every morning when her parents switch her hearing aids on, often breaking out in happy squeals.

CONSTRUCTION WORKER SAVES TODDLER CHOKING ON COIN: ‘I AM SO THANKFUL’ 

Westlake Legal Group sweetest-smile-449791 Moment deaf baby hears mom's voice after hearing aids switched on fox-news/health/wellness fox-news/health/vision-and-hearing fox-news/health/healthy-living/childrens-health fox-news/good-news fox news fnc/health fnc article Alexandria Hein 9a2f8cb8-15d9-528c-9706-a5e95a2fde1d

Georgina was born deaf and fitted with hearing aids just a few weeks after her birth. (SWNS)

“It’s like she’s having the lights switched on and she can hear her mum’s voice,” Paul, the father of Georgina Addison, told SWNS. “She is instantly delighted and becomes much happier straight away. Her face lights up and she looks delighted.”

TODDLER WITH FACIAL GROWTH UNDERGOES LIFE-CHANGING SURGERY IN US

Paul, of Harrogate, England, told SWNS that his daughter was fitted with the hearing aids when she was just a few weeks old. Paul said he and his wife, Louise, discovered their daughter was deaf shortly after her birth, and that while it was “difficult,” they chose to focus on the positive.

Westlake Legal Group sweetest-smile-449781 Moment deaf baby hears mom's voice after hearing aids switched on fox-news/health/wellness fox-news/health/vision-and-hearing fox-news/health/healthy-living/childrens-health fox-news/good-news fox news fnc/health fnc article Alexandria Hein 9a2f8cb8-15d9-528c-9706-a5e95a2fde1d

Her father said she breaks out in smiles and giggles each morning when they turn her hearing aids on.  (SWNS)

Part of that positive is that each morning, Paul said Georgina reacts to hearing her parents like it’s a completely new experience.

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“It fills my heart with joy, and you just can’t put a price on things like this,” he told SWNS.

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Stephen Colbert’s Nancy Pelosi song gets mixed reactions: ‘What happened to comedy?’

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” drew mixed reactions Thursday night after a bizarre comedy tribute to Nancy Pelosi.

The late-night show sent social media into a frenzy after it released a comedic jingle about Pelosi, hours after she had announced articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump will proceed.

STEPHEN COLBERT ‘LATE SHOW’ WRITER: ‘I’M JUST GLAD WE RUINED BRETT KAVANAUGH’S LIFE’

The musical tribute was a song that included several jabs at POTUS, 73, and Pelosi, 79, who were respectively described as a “bum” and “grandma” in the first few lines.

“DC’s got its hustlers / the White House got its bum / Speaker of the House is Nancy Pelosi / she’s as pant-suited as they come,” the song begins.

STEPHEN COLBERT CALLS DONALD TRUMP A ‘DELICIOUS IDIOT,’ SAYS HE STOLE ‘COLBERT REPORT’ LINE

Westlake Legal Group AP18311090097145 Stephen Colbert's Nancy Pelosi song gets mixed reactions: 'What happened to comedy?' Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/stephen-colbert fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/entertainment/genres/late-night fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 46b8a77d-07b8-5a6f-ac9b-1aef096646ec

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif., speaks to a crowd of volunteers and supporters of the Democratic party at an election night returns event at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018, in Washington.  (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

“If you violate the constitution / she’s not a grandma you wanna cross,” the song continues, which refers to Pelosi’s now-viral comment of telling a reporter not to mess with her on Thursday.

“Though Donald Trump calls her nervous Nancy / he better best call her boss just because / they say you don’t quid pro quo on her watch / you don’t withhold Ukraine finances / you don’t hand foreign policy to Giuliani / and you don’t mess around with Nancy.”

The tribute instantly sparked an online debate, with some fans calling the sketch “embarrassing,” while others thought it was “hilarious.”

WOULD COLBERT INVITE TRUMP ON HIS SHOW AGAIN? ‘THE QUICK ANSWER WOULD BE NO’

“That’s the greatest!!!” one Twitter user wrote.

Another commenter claimed to be so into the song that she “didn’t want it to end so quickly.”

But others claimed it was distasteful, and even questioned the future of the show.

STEPHEN COLBERT, IN NEW ZEALAND, SAYS HE MISSES FEELING PROUD OF HIS COUNTRY

“What happened? Late-night used to be funny,” a user tweeted.

Another Stephen Colbert follower agreed, “This is so embarrassing. Holy s–t. And people are commenting saying it’s the best thing ever. What happened to comedy?”

An additional fan simply responded, “RIP late night.”

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Of course, loyal fans of Colbert’s may not be surprised by the song’s treatment of Trump. Last month, Colbert said he misses being proud of the United States.

In 2018, Pelosi appeared on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” where she confidently said she was going to win the Speaker of the House seat. She was re-elected to the position in January.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6010284049001_6010294166001-vs Stephen Colbert's Nancy Pelosi song gets mixed reactions: 'What happened to comedy?' Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/stephen-colbert fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/entertainment/genres/late-night fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 46b8a77d-07b8-5a6f-ac9b-1aef096646ec   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6010284049001_6010294166001-vs Stephen Colbert's Nancy Pelosi song gets mixed reactions: 'What happened to comedy?' Melissa Roberto fox-news/person/stephen-colbert fox-news/person/nancy-pelosi fox-news/entertainment/genres/late-night fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 46b8a77d-07b8-5a6f-ac9b-1aef096646ec

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Kaley Cuoco’s sister Briana set for recurring role in ‘The Flight Attendant’

Westlake Legal Group cuoco-sisters Kaley Cuoco's sister Briana set for recurring role in 'The Flight Attendant' fox-news/person/kaley-cuoco fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article Andy Sahadeo 55ebed61-95d8-5c95-8423-d5af66a1f2ba

Kaley Cuoco and younger sister Briana are set to share the screen in “The Flight Attendant.”

Briana, who is a singer, actress, and dancer, is set to have a recurring role in the upcoming HBO Max series, Deadline reports.

FRIENDS,’ ‘BIG BANG THEORY’ STARS COURTENEY COX AND KALEY CUOCO’S SELFIE SENDS FANS INTO A FRENZY

“The Flight Attendant” tells the story of a flight attendant who wakes up hungover in a Dubai hotel with a dead body next to her, with no recollection of what happened the night before. Kaley is set to play the lead role of Cassie in the show. She will also serve as executive producer.

Sister Briana will play Cecilia, a meticulous assistant with an affinity for organization and eavesdropping on phone calls.

The series is based on the New York Times best-selling novel of the same name by Chris Bohjalian and will feature production from Greg Berlanti — best known for his work on “Dawson’s Creek,” “Riverdale” and “You.” Berlanti is also a co-creator of The CW’s ‘Arrowverse.’

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Briana has previously appeared as a contestant on “The Voice,” working on both Blake Shelton and Christina Aguilera’s teams. She has an extensive resume of appearances on shows including “The Newsroom,” “NCIS,” “Criminal Minds” as well as “The Big Bang Theory” alongside her sister. She has also performed as a dancer for Pitbull, Snoop Dogg and Ne-Yo.

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