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Westlake Legal Group > article (Page 73)

Pirates hijack supertanker off Nigeria, kidnap 19 crew members, report says

Pirates off the coast of Nigeria late Tuesday boarded a fully loaded supertanker and kidnapped 19 crew members on board, according to a report.

The incident happened about 80 miles from Bonny Island, Nigeria’s main loading point for crude oil, Bloomberg reported.

Westlake Legal Group g776617g01p40 Pirates hijack supertanker off Nigeria, kidnap 19 crew members, report says fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article 6e10d1b1-cd7f-5771-aeb4-d1e9c79021ec

Pirates off the coast of Nigeria hijacked a Navios-owned vessel late Tuesday. (sec.gov)

A spokesman for Navios, the ship’s owner, told the outlet that the crew members remain missing. Those who weren’t kidnapped managed to sail the vessel to a safe location.

Eight of the 19 crew members onboard the Hong Kong-flagged vessel were Indian, and one was Turkish, the New Indian Express reported.

The “prime concern is the safety and early return of the 19 persons taken by the pirate gang,” the Navios spokesman said. “All the appropriate authorities, including the Flag State, have been alerted and are responding, and all the necessary action is being taken to secure their well-being and early release.”

IRAN RESPONSIBLE FOR ‘BLATANT ASSAULT’ ON OIL TANKERS IN GULF OF OMAN, MIKE POMPEO SAYS

The area has been known for small-scale pirate attacks in recent years, though overall figures have dropped. In July, 10 Turkish sailors were kidnapped by gunmen off the coast of Nigeria while heading from Cameroon to the Ivory Coast.

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Between January and September of this year, nearly 20 percent of attacks where hijackers boarded a vessel took place off the coast of Nigeria, according to data from the International Maritime Bureau.

Westlake Legal Group g776617g01p40 Pirates hijack supertanker off Nigeria, kidnap 19 crew members, report says fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article 6e10d1b1-cd7f-5771-aeb4-d1e9c79021ec   Westlake Legal Group g776617g01p40 Pirates hijack supertanker off Nigeria, kidnap 19 crew members, report says fox-news/world/world-regions/africa fox news fnc/world fnc Bradford Betz article 6e10d1b1-cd7f-5771-aeb4-d1e9c79021ec

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Gabrielle Union has ‘productive’ meeting with NBC over ‘AGT’ exit, prompts investigation

Gabrielle Union had a five-hour meeting with NBC over her “America’s Got Talent” exit, and she called the sit-down “productive.”

“We had a lengthy 5-hour, and what I thought to be, productive meeting yesterday,” the actress, 47, tweeted on Wednesday. “I was able to, again, express my unfiltered truth. I led with transparency and my desire and hope for real change.”

In a statement obtained by Fox News, a representative for NBC said that “the initial conversation was candid and productive.”

“While there will be a further investigation to get a deeper understanding of the facts, we are working with Gabrielle to come to a positive resolution,” NBC added.

TERRY CREWS CATCHES BACKLASH FOR STATEMENT ON GABRIELLE UNION LEAVING ‘AGT

The meeting follows a Variety report that Union submitted complaints about an alleged “toxic culture” on the set of “AGT.” Union reportedly cited an offensive joke made by guest judge Jay Leno as an example, asking that it be reported to human resources, though it allegedly never was.

In addition, sources also told the outlet that Union was allegedly told that some of her often-changing hairstyles were “too black” for the show’s audience.

While Union has yet to clarify whether she was fired or left on her own accord, her husband Dwayne Wade alleged in a tweet that she was, in fact, fired.

Westlake Legal Group Gabrielle-Union-NBC Gabrielle Union has 'productive' meeting with NBC over 'AGT' exit, prompts investigation Nate Day fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 308d095d-eec2-56ad-b76e-8f7357aab519

Gabrielle Union said she had a 5-hour long meeting with NBC. (Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic)

JULIANNE HOUGH ADDRESSES HER AND GABRIELLE UNION’S ‘AGT’ DEPARTURES

“…When I got the news that my wife was being fired — my first question was obviously why!?,” he said on Twitter on Friday. “I am still waiting on a good answer to that question. But if anyone knows @itsgabrielleu or have heard of her you know she’s an advocate for our community and culture.”

Julianne Hough, who also departed the show, has also spoken out, denying that she left because of a “toxic culture.”

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“…I believe that the paradigm of the workplace and how you do business and work with people now, it’s shifting, and I think that the people that really want to see change happen are going to authentically and positively… do that. And so that’s all I really have to say about that,” the 31-year-old dancer said on People Now.

Westlake Legal Group Gabrielle-Union-NBC Gabrielle Union has 'productive' meeting with NBC over 'AGT' exit, prompts investigation Nate Day fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 308d095d-eec2-56ad-b76e-8f7357aab519   Westlake Legal Group Gabrielle-Union-NBC Gabrielle Union has 'productive' meeting with NBC over 'AGT' exit, prompts investigation Nate Day fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/events/scandal fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 308d095d-eec2-56ad-b76e-8f7357aab519

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

First giant planet around white dwarf discovered by scientists

For the very first time, scientists have found evidence of a giant planet associated with a white dwarf star.

Researchers used ESO’s Very Large Telescope to gain a stronger understanding of the properties of the star named WDJ0914+1914.

“It was one of those chance discoveries,” researcher and study lead Boris Gänsicke, from the University of Warwick in the United Kingdom, said in a statement.

The team’s follow-up observations, published in a new study in Nature, showed the presence of hydrogen, oxygen and sulphur associated with the white dwarf.

By analyzing the spectra taken by ESO’s X-shooter instrument, the team discovered that these elements were in a disc of gas swirling into the white dwarf, and not coming from the star itself.

OCEANS CONTAIN A MILLION TIMES MORE MICROPLASTIC THAN WE REALIZED, ALARMING STUDY CLAIMS

Westlake Legal Group white-dwarf-artist-impression First giant planet around white dwarf discovered by scientists fox-news/science/air-and-space/planets fox-news/science/air-and-space fox news fnc/science fnc Christopher Carbone article 51756bdf-61c7-5d18-aac9-e934c543ffe3

This illustration shows the white dwarf WDJ0914+1914 and its Neptune-like exoplanet. (ESO/M. Kornmesser)

FROTHY, TOXIC FOAM COVERS FAMOUS BEACH

According to a press release detailing the study’s findings, the detected amounts of hydrogen, oxygen and sulphur are similar to those found in the deep atmospheric layers of cold, giant planets like Neptune and Uranus.

Scientists believe that if this type of planet was orbiting near a hot white dwarf, the extreme ultraviolet radiation from the star would strip away its outer layers, and some of this stripped gas would swirl into a disc, itself coming together onto the white dwarf.

And that is what researchers think they are observing around WDJ0914+1914: the first evaporating planet orbiting a white dwarf.

“It took a few weeks of very hard thinking to figure out that the only way to make such a disc is the evaporation of a giant planet,” Matthias Schreiber from the University of Valparaiso in Chile, who computed the past and future evolution of this system, said in a statement.

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“The discovery also opens up a new window into the final fate of planetary systems,” Gänsicke added.

Westlake Legal Group white-dwarf-artist-impression First giant planet around white dwarf discovered by scientists fox-news/science/air-and-space/planets fox-news/science/air-and-space fox news fnc/science fnc Christopher Carbone article 51756bdf-61c7-5d18-aac9-e934c543ffe3   Westlake Legal Group white-dwarf-artist-impression First giant planet around white dwarf discovered by scientists fox-news/science/air-and-space/planets fox-news/science/air-and-space fox news fnc/science fnc Christopher Carbone article 51756bdf-61c7-5d18-aac9-e934c543ffe3

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a

It is tempting to describe Wednesday’s impeachment hearing before the House Judiciary Committee as a farce. But it was worse than that. It made a travesty of fairness.

With Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y. at the helm of the Judiciary Committee, there was no real chance that President Trump would be treated equitably. After all, Nadler’s confederate and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., had already obliterated any semblance of due process in impeachment hearings before his committee.

The Schiff hearings were a lollapalooza of hearsay, opinion and grotesque speculation. So there was no reason to believe that Nadler’s Judiciary Committee hearing would be anything less than a theater of the absurd.

LEGAL SCHOLARS CLASH IN HEARING OVER WHETHER TRUMP COMMITTED IMPEACHABLE OFFENSE

Sure enough, Nadler assembled a team of three liberal law professors who were already on record as antagonistic to President Trump. During their daylong testimony, the hostility was palpable.

There was little effort to disguise the relentless Democratic agenda to remove Trump from office by hell or high water. Obsessions are like that. They know no bounds and defy all sensibility.                       

More from Opinion

Republicans were afforded just one witness. Fortunately, his sagacity and eloquence offered a persuasive counterbalance. For one day at least, numerical superiority did not prevail.

Here is a summary of what unfolded, looking at the testimony of the four law professors who testified.

Harvard University Law Professor Noah Feldman

Feldman had already prejudged Trump’s guilt on an impeachable offense when he penned a column two months ago declaring that Trump had committed an unconstitutional “quid pro quo” in asking Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to look into the conduct of former Vice President Joe Biden.

This, of course, conveniently ignored the fact that no evidence of a quid pro quo exists anywhere in the record of the Trump-Zelensky phone call of July 25.

In his opening statement, Feldman stated with absolute certainty that he knew President Trump was acting for “personal gain” – as if he had magically divined Trump’s intent.

Yet, Feldman gave no consideration to the president’s stated explanation that Trump wanted to know whether a U.S. public office holder, then-Vice President Biden, might have committed a corrupt act. Does this mean that it’s corrupt for a president to ask about corruption, regardless of the context or circumstances? The professor didn’t say.

Feldman’s bias and enmity should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed his Twitter rants against the president, as the White House was quick to point out.

Barely two months into office, Trump publicly questioned whether intelligence agencies might have wiretapped him. The president’s tweet to that effect constituted “the risk of impeachment,” according to the good professor. Truly, you have to laugh at such a ludicrous claim.

Feldman seems to see the impeachment boogeyman behind just about everything Trump does. He penned a pulpy piece of comedy a few months later contending that Trump should be removed from office for exercising his constitutionally authorized power to pardon Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County in Arizona for a contempt of court conviction.

Feldman condemned the pardon as “an abuse of power” and “an impeachable offense.”

Apparently, it was OK for President Bill Clinton to pardon his brother, but it’s an impeachable act when Trump pardoned a sheriff in Arizona … because, you know, he’s a Republican. No serious person gave the argument credence, not even Democrats in Congress.

Stanford University Law Professor Pamela Karlan

Karlan vented her visceral anger from the outset of the Judiciary Committee hearing by claiming she was insulted at a Republican member’s suggestion that the learned professors hadn’t sufficiently digested all the evidence – especially Schiff’s 300-page report released the night before that was approved only by Democrats and rejected by Republicans.

But after scolding Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., Karlan’s officious manner persisted. She seemed to seethe at the mere mention of Trump, resurrecting a statement he made in jest during the 2016 campaign as if it was a death penalty crime.

Karlan asserted – without evidence– that Trump had “demanded foreign involvement in our upcoming election.”  But how could she know that? She presumed a motive and ascribed it to the president.

Nowhere in the transcript of the Trump-Zelensky call is there a demand for anything. Zelensky has repeatedly stated that no demand was ever made of him. There is no mention of the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

There was little effort to disguise the relentless Democratic agenda to remove Trump from office by hell or high water

To the contrary, Trump’s interest seemed to center on Biden’s potential wrongdoing as vice president when Biden demanded the firing of a prosecutor who was investigating the Ukrainian natural gas company that was paying his son Hunter an exorbitant amount of money every month to serve on its board.

Karlan lost all credibility when she took a boorish stab at President Trump’s teenage son and said:  “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.” The remark set a new low for gratuitous cheap shots.

The Stanford professor is a decided partisan who took aim at Trump before he ever assumed the presidency. In remarks published by the San Francisco Chronicle she compared the president-elect to his predecessors: “I can’t think of one who had such an across-the-board combination of ignorance, indifference and defiance.”

As I noted in an earlier column, Karlan signed an open letter predicting that Trump would fail to take his “constitutional oath seriously” and urged him to reverse his positions on social issues.

Within months of Trump being sworn in, Karlan told the web publication Salon: “If we had a series of presidents like Trump, we wouldn’t have a United States of America.”  Karlan wears her disdain of Trump on her sleeve. It showed during Wednesday’s hearing.

University of North Carolina Law Professor Michael Gerhardt

Gerhardt won the “exaggeration of the day” award when he declared: “If Congress fails to impeach here, then the impeachment process has lost all meaning.”

Gerhardt accused Trump of assaulting the Constitution and compared him to a monarch, resurrecting the almost forgotten Mueller Report as evidence. In Gerhardt’s judgment, Trump is former President Richard Nixon in disguise. Only worse.

Gerhardt careened from one point to another as he stumbled through a statement that he seemed not to have read beforehand. He denounced Trump’s exercise of a legally recognized executive privilege as “obstruction,” ignoring that past presidents – including Barack Obama – had done the same in response to congressional subpoenas.

The testimony of Gerhardt was predictable, if not dull. He had already authored a column last month condemning Trump for “trashing the Constitution.” In an interview, he accused the president of having “dismissed the rule of law as irrelevant in his life.” Enough said.

George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley

Turley was the only witness Republicans were permitted to call. Despite the stacked deck, he came across as the most earnest and objective witness among the four professors.

Turley began by making it clear that he is not a partisan.

“I am not a supporter of President Trump,” Turley said. “I voted against him in 2016 and I have previously voted for Presidents Clinton and Obama.”

Turley added that “one can oppose President Trump’s policies or actions but still conclude that the current legal case for impeachment is not just woefully inadequate, but in some respects dangerous as the basis for the impeachment of an American president.”

Turley warned that Congress would further divide and alienate the nation by pursuing impeachment without merit.

“If you rush this impeachment through, you will leave half of the American public behind and certainly that is not what the framers wanted,” the professor said.

Turley cautioned that an expedited impeachment without clear and convincing evidence, especially on the question of obstruction, would be an abuse of power by Congress. “You’re doing precisely what you’re criticizing the president for doing,” he said. 

The professor called the current effort to impeach Trump “slipshod” and driven by rage instead of reason.

“Impeachment must be based on proof, not presumptions,” Turley observed. “I don’t see proof of a quid pro quo.” He argued that there is “a paucity of evidence and an abundance of anger” driving Democrats. He criticized them for rushing the process based on “wafer thin evidence”.

President Trump’s action asking Ukraine to investigate Biden “does not make this a plausible case for bribery,” Turley said.

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The professor distilled the contentious issue to its essence: “If President Trump honestly believed that there was a corrupt arrangement with Hunter Biden that was not fully investigated by the Obama administration, the request for an investigation is not corrupt.”

In both his written statement and his oral testimony, Turley took apart all of the allegations leveled against Trump: bribery, extortion, obstruction and campaign finance violations. He explained why they did not apply to the known facts.

Turley then offered his own impassioned analysis of how we got here.

“We are living in the very period described by Alexander Hamilton –a period of agitated passions,” Turley said. “I get it. You’re mad. The president is mad. My Republican friends are mad. My Democratic friends are mad. My wife is mad. My kids are mad. Even my dog seems mad, and Luna is a goldendoodle and they don’t get mad. So we’re all mad. Where has that taken us? Will a slipshod impeachment make us less mad? That’s why it is wrong.

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“It’s wrong because this is not how you impeach an American president,” Turley continued. “To impeach a president on this record would expose every future president to the same type of inchoate impeachment.”

This was the clearest explanation yet for how the current impeachment hysteria has raged out of control. Sadly, it will make no difference. Democrats are determined beyond reason to impeach President Trump.

Neither logic nor the law seem to matter.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY GREGG JARRETT

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

California wildfire aftermath: PG&E nears $13.5B deal with victims, report says

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is near closing on a $13.5 billion payout to victims affected by California wildfires that were caused by its power lines, according to a Bloomberg report.

The utility giant would pay half in cash and the other half in stock for the newly organized company, people familiar with the matter said.

Reaching a settlement with the individual victims of the wildfires sparked by its equipment would be a major step toward resolving the company’s bankruptcy filed in January after facing $30 billion in liability from hundreds of lawsuits from fires in 2017 and 2018.

The company proposed paying victims a maximum of $8.4 billion in September. In a statement to Fox News, PG&E said it was “committed to satisfying all wildfire claims in full” as required by law and laid out in its bankruptcy plan.

PG&E CORP.FILES FOR BANKRUPTCY FOLLOWING WILDFIRE CLAIMS 

It said that PG&E has already reached settlements with two of the three major groups of wildfire victims in its bankruptcy proceedings, which include a $1 billion settlement with cities, counties and public entities and an $11 billion agreement with insurance companies that have already paid claims for 2017 and 2018 wildfires.

Westlake Legal Group 15_AP19330426583083 California wildfire aftermath: PG&E nears $13.5B deal with victims, report says Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/fires fox news fnc/us fnc fce956c3-e2ba-51c8-9162-7f0cb5084003 article

A helicopter drops water on the Cave Fire burning along Highway 154 in Los Padres National Forest, Calif., above Santa Barbara. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

The company did not comment on the new developments in the Bloomberg report, as mediation discussions are confidential, it said.

PG&E has spent months trying to negotiate a restructuring plan to emerge from bankruptcy by the middle of next year.

CALIFORNIA WILDFIRE THREAT, BLACKOUTS HAVE LONGTIME RESIDENTS READY TO MOVE ‘TOMORROW’

The compensation of individual wildfire victims has proved the most formidable of negotiations for the company. After the company initially offered a mere $8.4 billion, California Gov. Gavin Newsom threatened a state takeover if the utility could not reach a deal with creditors and wildfire victims soon.

PG&E has invoked outrage across the state for imposing blackouts on millions of Californians during high winds to keep its power lines from igniting more wildfires. In October alone, PG&E imposed mass blackouts four times.

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Additionally, equipment from PG&E sparked two fires in the northern part of the state, which was not a part of the blackout. The fires started in an area where the power was left on because it was not seen as a high fire risk.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a8836b4751db4662bc783fee2aae85a4 California wildfire aftermath: PG&E nears $13.5B deal with victims, report says Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/fires fox news fnc/us fnc fce956c3-e2ba-51c8-9162-7f0cb5084003 article   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a8836b4751db4662bc783fee2aae85a4 California wildfire aftermath: PG&E nears $13.5B deal with victims, report says Morgan Phillips fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/fires fox news fnc/us fnc fce956c3-e2ba-51c8-9162-7f0cb5084003 article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a

It is tempting to describe Wednesday’s impeachment hearing before the House Judiciary Committee as a farce. But it was worse than that. It made a travesty of fairness.

With Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y. at the helm of the Judiciary Committee, there was no real chance that President Trump would be treated equitably. After all, Nadler’s confederate and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., had already obliterated any semblance of due process in impeachment hearings before his committee.

The Schiff hearings were a lollapalooza of hearsay, opinion and grotesque speculation. So there was no reason to believe that Nadler’s Judiciary Committee hearing would be anything less than a theater of the absurd.

LEGAL SCHOLARS CLASH IN HEARING OVER WHETHER TRUMP COMMITTED IMPEACHABLE OFFENSE

Sure enough, Nadler assembled a team of three liberal law professors who were already on record as antagonistic to President Trump. During their daylong testimony, the hostility was palpable.

There was little effort to disguise the relentless Democratic agenda to remove Trump from office by hell or high water. Obsessions are like that. They know no bounds and defy all sensibility.                       

More from Opinion

Republicans were afforded just one witness. Fortunately, his sagacity and eloquence offered a persuasive counterbalance. For one day at least, numerical superiority did not prevail.

Here is a summary of what unfolded, looking at the testimony of the four law professors who testified.

Harvard University Law Professor Noah Feldman

Feldman had already prejudged Trump’s guilt on an impeachable offense when he penned a column two months ago declaring that Trump had committed an unconstitutional “quid pro quo” in asking Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to look into the conduct of former Vice President Joe Biden.

This, of course, conveniently ignored the fact that no evidence of a quid pro quo exists anywhere in the record of the Trump-Zelensky phone call of July 25.

In his opening statement, Feldman stated with absolute certainty that he knew President Trump was acting for “personal gain” – as if he had magically divined Trump’s intent.

Yet, Feldman gave no consideration to the president’s stated explanation that Trump wanted to know whether a U.S. public office holder, then-Vice President Biden, might have committed a corrupt act. Does this mean that it’s corrupt for a president to ask about corruption, regardless of the context or circumstances? The professor didn’t say.

Feldman’s bias and enmity should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed his Twitter rants against the president, as the White House was quick to point out.

Barely two months into office, Trump publicly questioned whether intelligence agencies might have wiretapped him. The president’s tweet to that effect constituted “the risk of impeachment,” according to the good professor. Truly, you have to laugh at such a ludicrous claim.

Feldman seems to see the impeachment boogeyman behind just about everything Trump does. He penned a pulpy piece of comedy a few months later contending that Trump should be removed from office for exercising his constitutionally authorized power to pardon Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County in Arizona for a contempt of court conviction.

Feldman condemned the pardon as “an abuse of power” and “an impeachable offense.”

Apparently, it was OK for President Bill Clinton to pardon his brother, but it’s an impeachable act when Trump pardoned a sheriff in Arizona … because, you know, he’s a Republican. No serious person gave the argument credence, not even Democrats in Congress.

Stanford University Law Professor Pamela Karlan

Karlan vented her visceral anger from the outset of the Judiciary Committee hearing by claiming she was insulted at a Republican member’s suggestion that the learned professors hadn’t sufficiently digested all the evidence – especially Schiff’s 300-page report released the night before that was approved only by Democrats and rejected by Republicans.

But after scolding Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., Karlan’s officious manner persisted. She seemed to seethe at the mere mention of Trump, resurrecting a statement he made in jest during the 2016 campaign as if it was a death penalty crime.

Karlan asserted – without evidence– that Trump had “demanded foreign involvement in our upcoming election.”  But how could she know that? She presumed a motive and ascribed it to the president.

Nowhere in the transcript of the Trump-Zelensky call is there a demand for anything. Zelensky has repeatedly stated that no demand was ever made of him. There is no mention of the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

There was little effort to disguise the relentless Democratic agenda to remove Trump from office by hell or high water

To the contrary, Trump’s interest seemed to center on Biden’s potential wrongdoing as vice president when Biden demanded the firing of a prosecutor who was investigating the Ukrainian natural gas company that was paying his son Hunter an exorbitant amount of money every month to serve on its board.

Karlan lost all credibility when she took a boorish stab at President Trump’s teenage son and said:  “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.” The remark set a new low for gratuitous cheap shots.

The Stanford professor is a decided partisan who took aim at Trump before he ever assumed the presidency. In remarks published by the San Francisco Chronicle she compared the president-elect to his predecessors: “I can’t think of one who had such an across-the-board combination of ignorance, indifference and defiance.”

As I noted in an earlier column, Karlan signed an open letter predicting that Trump would fail to take his “constitutional oath seriously” and urged him to reverse his positions on social issues.

Within months of Trump being sworn in, Karlan told the web publication Salon: “If we had a series of presidents like Trump, we wouldn’t have a United States of America.”  Karlan wears her disdain of Trump on her sleeve. It showed during Wednesday’s hearing.

University of North Carolina Law Professor Michael Gerhardt

Gerhardt won the “exaggeration of the day” award when he declared: “If Congress fails to impeach here, then the impeachment process has lost all meaning.”

Gerhardt accused Trump of assaulting the Constitution and compared him to a monarch, resurrecting the almost forgotten Mueller Report as evidence. In Gerhardt’s judgment, Trump is former President Richard Nixon in disguise. Only worse.

Gerhardt careened from one point to another as he stumbled through a statement that he seemed not to have read beforehand. He denounced Trump’s exercise of a legally recognized executive privilege as “obstruction,” ignoring that past presidents – including Barack Obama – had done the same in response to congressional subpoenas.

The testimony of Gerhardt was predictable, if not dull. He had already authored a column last month condemning Trump for “trashing the Constitution.” In an interview, he accused the president of having “dismissed the rule of law as irrelevant in his life.” Enough said.

George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley

Turley was the only witness Republicans were permitted to call. Despite the stacked deck, he came across as the most earnest and objective witness among the four professors.

Turley began by making it clear that he is not a partisan.

“I am not a supporter of President Trump,” Turley said. “I voted against him in 2016 and I have previously voted for Presidents Clinton and Obama.”

Turley added that “one can oppose President Trump’s policies or actions but still conclude that the current legal case for impeachment is not just woefully inadequate, but in some respects dangerous as the basis for the impeachment of an American president.”

Turley warned that Congress would further divide and alienate the nation by pursuing impeachment without merit.

“If you rush this impeachment through, you will leave half of the American public behind and certainly that is not what the framers wanted,” the professor said.

Turley cautioned that an expedited impeachment without clear and convincing evidence, especially on the question of obstruction, would be an abuse of power by Congress. “You’re doing precisely what you’re criticizing the president for doing,” he said. 

The professor called the current effort to impeach Trump “slipshod” and driven by rage instead of reason.

“Impeachment must be based on proof, not presumptions,” Turley observed. “I don’t see proof of a quid pro quo.” He argued that there is “a paucity of evidence and an abundance of anger” driving Democrats. He criticized them for rushing the process based on “wafer thin evidence”.

President Trump’s action asking Ukraine to investigate Biden “does not make this a plausible case for bribery,” Turley said.

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The professor distilled the contentious issue to its essence: “If President Trump honestly believed that there was a corrupt arrangement with Hunter Biden that was not fully investigated by the Obama administration, the request for an investigation is not corrupt.”

In both his written statement and his oral testimony, Turley took apart all of the allegations leveled against Trump: bribery, extortion, obstruction and campaign finance violations. He explained why they did not apply to the known facts.

Turley then offered his own impassioned analysis of how we got here.

“We are living in the very period described by Alexander Hamilton –a period of agitated passions,” Turley said. “I get it. You’re mad. The president is mad. My Republican friends are mad. My Democratic friends are mad. My wife is mad. My kids are mad. Even my dog seems mad, and Luna is a goldendoodle and they don’t get mad. So we’re all mad. Where has that taken us? Will a slipshod impeachment make us less mad? That’s why it is wrong.

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“It’s wrong because this is not how you impeach an American president,” Turley continued. “To impeach a president on this record would expose every future president to the same type of inchoate impeachment.”

This was the clearest explanation yet for how the current impeachment hysteria has raged out of control. Sadly, it will make no difference. Democrats are determined beyond reason to impeach President Trump.

Neither logic nor the law seem to matter.

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Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6113014289001_6113016627001-vs Gregg Jarrett: Impeachment-obsessed Democrats ignore logic and law as 4 professors testify at hearing Gregg Jarrett fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/jerrold-nadler fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 527cbaab-9575-57a8-a9c7-aaba14ad9a0a

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Rosie Huntington-Whiteley says her struggles losing baby weight were ‘very humbling’

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is opening up about something millions of women go through on a daily basis.

The supermodel and fiancée to action star Jason Statham, 52, got real about the struggles she experienced in bouncing back to her pre-baby weight after welcoming her first child with Statham in 2017.

“Listen, I enjoyed myself. I let the reins go,” Huntington-Whiteley, 32, said of her pregnancy to fellow supermodel and mom-to-be Ashley Graham on Graham’s “Pretty Big Deal” podcast.

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“It’s a new experience, so you’re kind of like, ‘Well, let’s see how this goes.’ And six months in I was like, ‘What? This is crazy!'” she told Graham.

During her pregnancy, the former Victoria’s Secret Angel said she gained 55 pounds and admitted that she initially found it difficult to accept that her body was changing so drastically, but got over the insecurity and “basically walked around naked for the last month at home.”

“By the end I just felt really empowered in my body, but it took a minute to get there,” she said.

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However, after giving birth to the couple’s baby boy, Jack, Huntington-Whitely said the weight she gained during the pregnancy didn’t fall off the way she had hoped.

“I would look in the mirror and I was like, ‘I have 35 to 40 pounds to lose.’” Huntington-Whiteley said. “And I go to the gym, go to the gym, go to the gym. It’s not falling off, it’s not coming off, and it was very humbling for me, because having had a certain body type for most of my life … I will say working out in the gym and looking back at myself and feeling like sh-t, I was like, ‘Now I understand how hard it is for some people to get to the gym.'”

Westlake Legal Group rosie-huntington-whiteley-ap Rosie Huntington-Whiteley says her struggles losing baby weight were ‘very humbling’ Julius Young fox-news/entertainment/events/babies fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article a3b068df-f7b6-58a4-976b-d14d6d5eb661

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley  (AP)

The model recalled feeling guilty for previously telling people all that was needed in order to achieve her lean physique was work out three times a week.

“I cannot tell people how to feel about their bodies, because everybody has a different experience,” Huntington-Whiteley said.

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Seven months after giving birth, she remembered paparazzi images floating online that drew criticism about her body and said she was “taken aback” at the negative comments.

“It was just shocking to see someone write, ‘Another Body Ruined After a Baby.’ I was like, ‘What the f–k? ‘Sure, I haven’t bounced back, it’s seven months later, but like…’ I was quiet for a couple days but you get on. It makes you stronger,” she said.

“Everybody’s body is different, everyone is on their own journey, and I really want every mother to really focus on herself but also the time with her child and it’ll come, it’ll happen, and everybody gets back to a place where they feel good again, if not better,” Huntington-Whiteley added, admitting it took her a year to get back to her pre-baby weight.

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“Because I feel better, and I feel a different respect for my body than I did before,” she said.

Westlake Legal Group rosie-huntington-whiteley-hunt Rosie Huntington-Whiteley says her struggles losing baby weight were ‘very humbling’ Julius Young fox-news/entertainment/events/babies fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article a3b068df-f7b6-58a4-976b-d14d6d5eb661   Westlake Legal Group rosie-huntington-whiteley-hunt Rosie Huntington-Whiteley says her struggles losing baby weight were ‘very humbling’ Julius Young fox-news/entertainment/events/babies fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article a3b068df-f7b6-58a4-976b-d14d6d5eb661

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Italian vinegar makers lose court battle over ‘balsamic’ term

The European Union‘s top court ruled Wednesday that Italian vinegar makers from Italy‘s Modena province can’t stop German competitors from using “balsamic” and other terms to advertise or describe their products.

The protection of the name Aceto Balsamico di Modena does not extend to the use of “non-geographical individual terms,” the European Union (EU) Court of Justice in Luxembourg ruled.

The term has been protected as a “geographical indication” since 2009 but does not mean exclusive use of the word, the court said, according to the BBC.

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Westlake Legal Group Balsamic-Vinegar-iStock-1 Italian vinegar makers lose court battle over 'balsamic' term Louis Casiano fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox news fnc/food-drink fnc article 421d9a77-c033-5d74-84b2-e842f382e9de

A European Union court ruled Wednesday that Italian vinegar makers can’t stop competitors from using the “balsamic” term.  (iStock)

“The term ‘aceto’ [vinegar] is a common term and the term ‘balsamico’ [balsamic] is an adjective that is commonly used to refer to a vinegar with a bittersweet [flavor],” the court said.

The EU uses geographical indications to protect food and drinks whose quality, reputation and other characteristics relate to a specific geographical origin, according to the BBC. Modena, in northern Italy, is famous for its balsamic vinegar, which is made from several grape varieties.

Mariangela Grosoli, president of the consortium for the protection of Aceto Balsamico di Modena, called the decision “unjust” in a statement to Bloomberg.

“The reality is that many European countries have partly wanted to take possession of the worldwide success achieved by the balsamic vinegar of Modena — this is the only vinegar to be bittersweet and to use the word balsamic,” he said.

Other Italian vinegar producers called the ruling confusing and disappointing.

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The case reached the court after Germany’s Federal Court of Justice sought guidance in a dispute between Italian producers and a German firm that sells vinegar-based products labeled “Aceto” or “Aceto Balsamico.”

Wednesday’s ruling means the terms are now allowed.

Westlake Legal Group Balsamic-Vinegar-iStock-1 Italian vinegar makers lose court battle over 'balsamic' term Louis Casiano fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox news fnc/food-drink fnc article 421d9a77-c033-5d74-84b2-e842f382e9de   Westlake Legal Group Balsamic-Vinegar-iStock-1 Italian vinegar makers lose court battle over 'balsamic' term Louis Casiano fox-news/world/world-regions/italy fox-news/world/world-regions/germany fox news fnc/food-drink fnc article 421d9a77-c033-5d74-84b2-e842f382e9de

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Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait

Who is the boss? Former first lady Michelle Obama or former President Barack Obama?

The artist who painted the 44th president for the National Portrait Gallery may have an answer.

Kehinde Wiley hesitated at first when asked by The Associated Press this week at Art Basel Miami, but he eventually revealed: “I got a call and [Obama] said, ‘The first version that you made, I love it, but Michelle doesn’t.”

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Westlake Legal Group Kehinde-Wiley-AP Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait Frank Miles fox-news/person/michelle-obama fox-news/person/barack-obama fox news fnc/politics fnc fa5501b9-ae29-5074-8bfa-cd2e975450fb article

Kehinde Wiley arrived at Creative Minds Talks during Art Basel on Monday in Miami Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

“I swear I wasn’t going to talk about this,” he added.

Turns out the former first lady thought the piece was missing some of Wiley’s signature style, he said.

Westlake Legal Group Barack-Michelle-Obama-AP Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait Frank Miles fox-news/person/michelle-obama fox-news/person/barack-obama fox news fnc/politics fnc fa5501b9-ae29-5074-8bfa-cd2e975450fb article

Former first lady Michelle Obama may have rejected the first version of the official portrait of former President Barack Obama. (AP)

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“There’s something really great about stepping outside of yourself and creating history and creating legacy,” the artist added.

The finished work of art featured a 7-foot portrait of the former president sitting in a field of flowers, including chrysanthemums, the official flower of Chicago; jasmine, a nod to Obama’s childhood in Hawaii; and African blue lilies to symbolize Obama’s late father who was from Kenya.

Before Obama, Wiley had been known for giving voice to the voiceless: taking people who historically have come from a perceived place of nonexistence and putting them squarely in the forefront of his works.

He said he had to prepare himself when he was commissioned to depict the most powerful man in the world.

Westlake Legal Group Obama-Portrait-Kehinde-Wiley-Smithsonian Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait Frank Miles fox-news/person/michelle-obama fox-news/person/barack-obama fox news fnc/politics fnc fa5501b9-ae29-5074-8bfa-cd2e975450fb article

The finished work of art featured a 7-foot portrait of former President Barack Obama sitting in a field of flowers. (Smithsonian)

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“I’m in the Oval Office, my hands are shaking,” he told The Associated Press, recalling how he and Obama went through various poses and paged through art history books discussing the importance of letting the president’s personality shine through.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Obama-Portrait-Kehinde-Wiley-Smithsonian Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait Frank Miles fox-news/person/michelle-obama fox-news/person/barack-obama fox news fnc/politics fnc fa5501b9-ae29-5074-8bfa-cd2e975450fb article   Westlake Legal Group Obama-Portrait-Kehinde-Wiley-Smithsonian Michelle Obama may have rejected first version of her husband’s official portrait Frank Miles fox-news/person/michelle-obama fox-news/person/barack-obama fox news fnc/politics fnc fa5501b9-ae29-5074-8bfa-cd2e975450fb article

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Body-positivity blogger exposes the reality behind the ‘perfect’ Instagram photo

Westlake Legal Group Perfect-Body-istock Body-positivity blogger exposes the reality behind the 'perfect' Instagram photo Gerren Keith Gaynor fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/health/healthy-living/mind-and-body fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc e6e0dddc-ee7c-5ab0-9a10-fdfbc2f61786 article

A body-positivity blogger from Finland is debunking the myth of the “perfect” Instagram photo.

Sara Puhto, 23, is poking fun at social media’s impossibly flawless standard in a series of Instagram photos, which she started doing as early as 2018.

In a side-by-side image, Puhto demonstrates what’s considered the “perfect” Instagram snap versus how she looks in real life.

On the left, she poses perfectly with a subtle, modelesque angle to accentuate her curves — stomach sucked in, buttocks poked out. On the right, however, Puhto stands upright with her head to the sky as she smiles and allows her tummy to stick out naturally.

BODY-POSITIVE BLOGGER SAYS GAINING WEIGHT ‘SAVED MY LIFE’

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“In photos I constantly suck in my tummy or try and hide it and stick out my booty as much as possible. But why?” she captioned the photo.

“We’re constantly flooded with photos of ‘perfection’ on social media and see advertisements about ways to change your body to fit a certain idealized body trend.”

Rather than striving for perfection, she encouraged her 319,000 followers to learn to accept the skin they’re in.

“We constantly work on changing our bodies, but why don’t we focus more on changing the way we look at our bodies,” Puhto wrote. “Don’t focus on negativity, focus on accepting and loving what you dislike about yourself. You have this body and it allows you to live life.”

“We should all allow ourselves to experience life to the fullest without the fear of judgment about our bodies, by ourselves or by others,” she added.

Puhto’s followers praised her for exposing social media’s dangerous beauty standards and having the courage to show her real self.

“You’re beautiful and amazing. You should be proud of the message you are sending and actively changing unhealthy ideals,” one Instagram user commented.

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“Your posts have helped me out so much,” another person said. “I always beat myself up for being bloated,”

Yet another follower added, “You’re the reason I love my own body.”

Westlake Legal Group Perfect-Body-istock Body-positivity blogger exposes the reality behind the 'perfect' Instagram photo Gerren Keith Gaynor fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/health/healthy-living/mind-and-body fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc e6e0dddc-ee7c-5ab0-9a10-fdfbc2f61786 article   Westlake Legal Group Perfect-Body-istock Body-positivity blogger exposes the reality behind the 'perfect' Instagram photo Gerren Keith Gaynor fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/health/healthy-living/mind-and-body fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc e6e0dddc-ee7c-5ab0-9a10-fdfbc2f61786 article

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