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Westlake Legal Group > News and News Media (Page 38)

Dick Van Dyke endorses Sanders, calls for support from older voters

Westlake Legal Group uERCPxoU6orDENyA8lNT_7JAHVmvQi6WNVkbaJJsp1o Dick Van Dyke endorses Sanders, calls for support from older voters r/politics

My white suburban mother is 64, and she voted Liz in the Iowa caucus, but is also a strong Bernie supporter. It’s really hard to find adults who reasonably understand progressive views, but I think having several children, all who have had one or more struggles in the current economy and have had to deal with student debt, terribly expensive health care, housing crisis, and immigration has helped her realize how important it is to listen to young people, as well as minorities views.

She’s even one of the lucky “boomers” that we like to mock, has a nice paid off 4 bed, 3 bath home, an expensive RV to travel with, union health care that pays for everything, and my father has a cushy pension.

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Newt Gingrich predicts Sanders is more likely to cost Democrats the House than win the White House

Westlake Legal Group Video-69 Newt Gingrich predicts Sanders is more likely to cost Democrats the House than win the White House fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/kevin-mccarthy fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 5e5fb2d1-2378-5ecc-830e-13db7e9ddc92

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., told “Hannity” Friday that while Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., has a “distant possibility of winning” the presidency in November, there’s a much better chance that his candidacy brings an end to Nancy Pelosi’s tenure as House Speaker.

“He’s the greatest gift Kevin McCarthy — the Republican leader in the House — could possibly hope for,” Gingrich said. “Because Sanders really is the true Democratic Party. He represents all of the big-government ideas, all of the radicalism, all of the weird foreign policy that is at the heart of the Democratic Party.

TRUMP RIPS DEMS’ ‘REALITY SHOW’

“And I think that the contrast between President Trump and his record, particularly on the economy, but just in general — I mean, think about the Trump judges and then ask, you know, can Sanders give us a list of people he would nominate to the Supreme Court?” Gingrich continued. “They would all be radicals. So, it could end up being one of the great historic campaigns in American history.”

Host Dan Bongino suggested that Sanders’ campaign is similar to those of George McGovern, Walter Mondale and Michael Dukakis, all of whom lost on emphatic fashion to Republicans during the late 20th century.

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Gingrich agreed, adding that former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg has tried to make that exact case.

“The challenge here is something very different — Bernie Sanders essentially is a bumper sticker,” he said. “It is a ‘Gosh, I’d love a nice future where I didn’t have to pay back my student loans, where everything was free, where somebody took care of me.’ — And Sanders represents in that sense a sort of a myth. And it’s very hard to fight a myth with facts.”

Westlake Legal Group Video-69 Newt Gingrich predicts Sanders is more likely to cost Democrats the House than win the White House fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/kevin-mccarthy fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 5e5fb2d1-2378-5ecc-830e-13db7e9ddc92   Westlake Legal Group Video-69 Newt Gingrich predicts Sanders is more likely to cost Democrats the House than win the White House fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/kevin-mccarthy fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz article 5e5fb2d1-2378-5ecc-830e-13db7e9ddc92

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Ben Affleck shares what he’s looking for in his next relationship: ‘All the sort of usual stuff’

Ben Affleck is sharing the way into his heart.

The “Way Back” star opened up to Entertainment Tonight, in a new interview published on Friday, about the traits he’s looking for in his next relationship.

“I don’t know, trust? And care, and mutual respect, and all the sort of usual stuff,” Affleck told the outlet.

SELENA GOMEZ REVEALS WHAT SHE LOOKS FOR IN A DATE

He continued: “But I think that’s a big part of what makes life satisfying and interesting. … It sort of happens when it happens, though.

Westlake Legal Group benaff Ben Affleck shares what he's looking for in his next relationship: 'All the sort of usual stuff' Mariah Haas fox-news/person/ben-affleck fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 3eb5015a-55cf-5617-b15f-423afb1a2d3a

Ben Affleck attends “The Way Back” Atlanta Q&A screening at Plaza Theatre on February 19, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Warner Bros.)

“It’s not the thing you can force,” the 47-year-old actor added.

Earlier this week, Affleck also reflected on his 10-year marriage with ex-wife Jennifer Garner, with whom he shares three children.

BEN AFFLECK OPENS UP ABOUT TAKING ANTIDEPRESSANTS SINCE HE WAS 26: ‘THEY’RE VERY HELPFUL FOR ME’

“The biggest regret of my life is this divorce,” Affleck told the New York Times, explaining that while he still feels guilt over the split, he’s moved beyond the shame. “Shame is really toxic. There is no positive byproduct of shame. It’s just stewing in a toxic, hideous feeling of low self-worth and self-loathing.”

Westlake Legal Group rtr3fytg Ben Affleck shares what he's looking for in his next relationship: 'All the sort of usual stuff' Mariah Haas fox-news/person/ben-affleck fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 3eb5015a-55cf-5617-b15f-423afb1a2d3a

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner divorced in 2018 after a long separation. (Reuters)

The Oscar winner added: “It’s not particularly healthy for me to obsess over the failures — the relapses — and beat myself up. I have certainly made mistakes. I have certainly done things that I regret. But you’ve got to pick yourself up, learn from it, learn some more, try to move forward.”

Following his split with Garner, 47, Affleck was linked to “Saturday Night Live” producer Lindsay Shookus and model Shauna Sexton.

BEN AFFLECK CALLS JENNIFER GARNER DIVORCE ‘BIGGEST REGRET OF MY LIFE’

As for his upcoming movie, “The Way Back,” he stars as a high school basketball coach who faces struggles similar to Affleck such as alcoholism, and the Oscar winner told Entertainment Tonight that he saw his own experience as “an advantage” while shooting the film.

He shared that he was “feeling a full range of kind of access to my emotions” and felt “ready to do a heavy, performance-based piece.”

<img src="https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2018/09/640/320/Ben20Affleck202017.jpg?ve=1&tl=1" alt="Following his split with Jennifer Garner, Affleck was linked to 'Saturday Night Live' producer Lindsay Shookus and model Shauna Sexton.
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Following his split with Jennifer Garner, Affleck was linked to ‘Saturday Night Live’ producer Lindsay Shookus and model Shauna Sexton.<br data-cke-eol=”1″> (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

“I knew that in this day and age of celebrities’ personal lives becoming news stories, those were questions I was kind of going to answer anyway,” he explained. “The interesting thing for me was to be able to define the story myself, the way I see it, which is really one of hope.”

BEN AFFLECK THANKS FANS FOR SUPPORT AFTER COMPLETING ALCOHOL REHAB

Affleck went on to say that he knows people and has a lot of friends “who have dealt with issues like this compulsive behavior and addictive behavior and the vast majority of them are really honest, accountable people living good, healthy lives.”

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“The idea that life gets better, that you can get better, that you can overcome your obstacles, is a really important one to me and that’s the approach I liked about this movie,” he noted. “It was not just like, ‘Oh, there is alcoholism.’ That’s kind of ordinary.”

Westlake Legal Group Ben20Affleck202017 Ben Affleck shares what he's looking for in his next relationship: 'All the sort of usual stuff' Mariah Haas fox-news/person/ben-affleck fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 3eb5015a-55cf-5617-b15f-423afb1a2d3a   Westlake Legal Group Ben20Affleck202017 Ben Affleck shares what he's looking for in his next relationship: 'All the sort of usual stuff' Mariah Haas fox-news/person/ben-affleck fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 3eb5015a-55cf-5617-b15f-423afb1a2d3a

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Michael Loftus: Calling Trump racist for praising ‘Gone With the Wind’ is ‘end stage’ of ‘Trump derangement’

Westlake Legal Group Video-68 Michael Loftus: Calling Trump racist for praising 'Gone With the Wind' is 'end stage' of 'Trump derangement' fox-news/world/world-regions/south-korea fox-news/topic/old-hollywood fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz b1b28530-43e4-52dd-8014-0c929f00e25e article

Comedian and Fox Nation personality Michael Loftus told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Friday that media figures calling out President Trump for his critique of Oscar-winning South Korean film “Parasite” as well as his praise for the classic “Gone With The Wind” are suffering from “end-stage” Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Trump was lambasted for wondering aloud why an American movie academy would award its highest honor to a foreign film, pointing to the Clark Gable epic as an example of award-winning cinema.

TRUMP RIPS DEMOCRATS’ ‘REALITY SHOW’

Sociologist Michael Eric Dyson claimed on “The View” Friday that the film hearkens to “subordinating black people to white folk,” while CNN’s John King directly called the film “racist.”

Also on CNN, New York Times congressional editor Julie Hirschfeld Davis said that the remark was “another way of reminding people of these cultural themes that he really likes to talk about: ‘This is not the country that it should be, this is not the country we want it to be.'”

“Why don’t we bring back Mamie with the handkerchief on her head?” said Republican commentator Ana Navarro on “The View,” sarcastically responding to Trump.

“[Gone With The Wind] is a great piece of American filmmaking,” Loftus said Friday. “I feel bad for all these people at the height of Trump Derangement Syndrome.”

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“That’s the end stage of Trump Derangement Syndrome — anything that Trump mentions is racist. At this point blinking will be racist, smiling, using hand gestures…”

Loftus added that he enjoyed Best Picture winner “Parasite,” which was filmed in Korean, but said that the Oscars should be “br[ought] back home” and awarded to American movies.

Westlake Legal Group Video-68 Michael Loftus: Calling Trump racist for praising 'Gone With the Wind' is 'end stage' of 'Trump derangement' fox-news/world/world-regions/south-korea fox-news/topic/old-hollywood fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz b1b28530-43e4-52dd-8014-0c929f00e25e article   Westlake Legal Group Video-68 Michael Loftus: Calling Trump racist for praising 'Gone With the Wind' is 'end stage' of 'Trump derangement' fox-news/world/world-regions/south-korea fox-news/topic/old-hollywood fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz b1b28530-43e4-52dd-8014-0c929f00e25e article

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‘Friends’ reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: ‘Excuse me?!’

Just hours after it was revealed that the “Friends” crew will officially be reuniting for an exclusive “unscripted cast reunion special,” celebrity fans of the beloved series could not contain their excitement.

On Friday, the stars of the show — Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer — took to their respective Instagram accounts to share the news. All six cast members shared a photo along with a simple phrase in the caption: “It’s happening.”

Their posts immediately set the Internet ablaze, with many celebs chiming in about how thrilled they are.

‘FRIENDS’ CAST OFFICIALLY REUNITING FOR AN UNSCRIPTED SPECIAL ON HBO MAX

“EXCUSE ME?!” wrote “Modern Family” star Sarah Hyland along with crying emojis.

Jenna Dewan said: “Ahhhhhhhh!!” with clapping hands emojis.

Michelle Pfeiffer was stunned, writing: “WHAT?!!”

Westlake Legal Group Michelle-Pfeiffer-Sarah-Hyland-getty 'Friends' reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: 'Excuse me?!' Mariah Haas fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/friends fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 100f8a41-7097-555a-bf29-656455518124

Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars shared their excitement on Friday about the upcoming ‘unscripted cast reunion special’ of ‘Friends’ on HBO Max.  (Getty)

Julianne Hough said: “Oh my AAAAAHHHHHHH” with heart and shocked-face emojis.

“WAIT I NEED TO UNDERSTAND WHATS [sic] HAPPENING HERE,” Erin Foster asked.

‘FRIENDS’ CAST HAS STAYED CLOSE FOR 25 YEARS BY ‘LEANING ON EACH OTHER’ IN TIMES OF NEED

“Bachelor” alum Nick Viall said: “One step closer to world peace.”

On Friday, HBO Max revealed that the unscripted special is set to debut on the new streaming service when it launches in May.

Westlake Legal Group friends-cast-getty-1 'Friends' reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: 'Excuse me?!' Mariah Haas fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/friends fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 100f8a41-7097-555a-bf29-656455518124

Pictured: (l-r) Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay, Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Courteney Cox as Monica Geller, Matt LeBlanc as Joey Tribbiani. (Jon Ragel/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

“Series stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer will return to the iconic comedy’s original soundstage, Stage 24, on the Warner Bros. Studio lot in Burbank for a celebration of the beloved show,” a press release confirmed. “The unscripted cast reunion special, along with all 236 episodes of the Emmy-winning series, will be available to subscribers at the launch of HBO Max.”

‘FRIENDS’ CO-STARS JENNIFER ANISTON, COURTENEY COX AND LISA KUDROW REUNITE ON INSTAGRAM

“Guess you could call this the one where they all got back together — we are reuniting with David, Jennifer, Courteney, Matt, Lisa and Matthew for an HBO Max special that will be programmed alongside the entire ‘Friends’ library,” said Kevin Reilly, chief content officer of HBO Max and president of TBS, TNT and truTV.

“I became aware of Friends when it was in the very early stages of development and then had the opportunity to work on the series many years later and have delighted in seeing it catch on with viewers generation after generation. It taps into an era when friends — and audiences — gathered together in real-time and we think this reunion special will capture that spirit, uniting original and new fans,” he added.

Westlake Legal Group Friends-Marketplace 'Friends' reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: 'Excuse me?!' Mariah Haas fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/friends fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 100f8a41-7097-555a-bf29-656455518124

385848 01: Cast members of NBC’s comedy series “Friends.” Pictured: David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, Courteney Cox as Monica Geller, Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing, Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay, Matt LeBlanc as Joey Tribbiani. (Photo by Warner Bros. Television)

Ben Winston is set to direct and executive produce, along with Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman and David Crane.

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Aniston, Cox, Kudrow, LeBlanc, Perry and Schwimmer will also executive produce the special. Emma Conway and James Longman are co-executive producers.

“Friends” ran for 10 seasons from 1994 to 2004 on NBC.

Fox News’ Jessica Napoli contributed to this report

Westlake Legal Group friends-cast-getty-1 'Friends' reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: 'Excuse me?!' Mariah Haas fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/friends fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 100f8a41-7097-555a-bf29-656455518124   Westlake Legal Group friends-cast-getty-1 'Friends' reunion special has Michelle Pfeiffer, Sarah Hyland and more stars losing it: 'Excuse me?!' Mariah Haas fox-news/entertainment/tv fox-news/entertainment/friends fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 100f8a41-7097-555a-bf29-656455518124

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HBO Max Wants To Know, How You Doin’? As It Teases ‘Friends’ Reunion

Westlake Legal Group ap_18222413450503-91b57a7d92249571284a95d2090861ffe9a70416-s1100-c15 HBO Max Wants To Know, How You Doin'? As It Teases 'Friends' Reunion

The ‘Friends’ cast will take part in an unscripted reunion special on HBO Max in May, with all six stars of the show. The cast of the show from left, David Schwimmer, Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox Arquette, Jennifer Aniston and Matt LeBlanc pose after the show won outstanding comedy series at the 54th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, in Los Angeles in Sept. 2002. Reed Saxon/AP hide caption

toggle caption

Reed Saxon/AP

Westlake Legal Group  HBO Max Wants To Know, How You Doin'? As It Teases 'Friends' Reunion

The ‘Friends’ cast will take part in an unscripted reunion special on HBO Max in May, with all six stars of the show. The cast of the show from left, David Schwimmer, Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox Arquette, Jennifer Aniston and Matt LeBlanc pose after the show won outstanding comedy series at the 54th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, in Los Angeles in Sept. 2002.

Reed Saxon/AP

It could be called, the one that is finally friggin’ happening.

All six original cast members of the megahit sitcom Friends will come together for a reunion debuting in May, WarnerMedia announced Friday.

“It’s official, Friends fans! After 15 years, nine months, and innumerable fan requests from around the globe, we now have the ‘brand-new information’ you’ve been waiting for,” a statement read.

The reunion which is being described as “an untitled unscripted special” will debut on the media giant’s new streaming service HBO Max, along with all 236 episodes of Friends, which debuted in 1994 on NBC. Unscripted is industry-speak for reality-TV or a documentary, which indicates this will not be a reboot of the scripted series.

The show’s stars — Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer – virtual unknowns when the show began, will return to the Warner Bros. soundstage where the show was shot, the statement said.

“Guess you could call this the one where they all got back together…” said Kevin Reilly, chief content officer of HBO Max, in the press release.

Reilly, a longtime media executive who also serves as president of cable channels TNT, TBS and truTV, said he had the opportunity to work on the show during some of its 10-year-run on NBC. He said he was “delighted” the show continues to connect with audiences long after its original run ended in 2004, adding he hopes the reunion will recreated that same spark with audiences new and old.

“It taps into an era when friends – and audiences – gathered together in real time and we think this reunion special will capture that spirit, uniting original and new fans.”

Cox, who played Monica Gellar, whose character quirks included obsessive cleanliness, posted on Instagram a photo of the cast along with a caption that read simply, “It’s happening….”

The reunion has been longed for by die-hard fans of the show ever since it ended its original run as one of the most successful shows in television history in 2004.

As Variety points out, rumors of the reunion have been “swirling since last fall” following WarnerMedia’s acquisition of the show’s rights.

Variety also reports each of the cast members will earn a lofty payday for appearing in the special – at least $2.5 million each.

Netflix previously had the rights to Friends. It had been one of that streaming giant’s most-watched programs, until Netflix it bid farewell to the show in December, tweeting at the time, “The One Where We Have To Say Goodbye.”

Warner Media outbid Netflix for Friends and reportedly paid $425 million for the rights to stream all 10 seasons of the show.

Since it went off the air in 2004, Friends has displayed tremendous staying power, connecting with audiences that weren’t old enough to remember the show during its original run.

The show centered around six friends, Rachel (Aniston), Monica (Cox), Phoebe (Kudrow), Joey (LeBlanc), Chandler (Perry) and Ross (Schwimmer) – all 20-somethings living in New York City.

In many ways the show was groundbreaking, such as when the six principal cast members successfully negotiated a $1 million-per-episode pay out late in the show’s run.

Friends however did — and continues to — have its share of critics, including those who point to the show’s lack of racial representation for a series set in multicultural New York City.

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Lori Vallow held on $5M bail, extradition hearing set

Lori Vallow, the Idaho mother who fled to Hawaii amid questions about the disappearance of her two children, was ordered held on $5 million bail on Friday.

Vallow, 46, appeared in a Hawaii courtroom a day after being arrested by Kauai police on a warrant issued by prosecutors in Madison, Idaho, on charges of two felony counts of desertion and nonsupport of dependent children. Court papers accuse her of being a flight risk, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

She also faces multiple charges linked to the disappearance of her 7-year-old autistic son Joshua “JJ” Vallow and 17-year-old daughter Tylee Ryan. She refused to waive her extraction hearing, which is set for March 2.

NEW JERSEY PROSECUTORS RELEASE SUICIDE NOTES FROM STEPHANIE PARZE’S EX-BOYFRIEND: ‘I CAN’T DO LIFE IN PRISON’

The warrant for her arrest stemmed from Vallow missing a January deadline to produce her children in front of authorities to prove they are alive. They have not been seen since September 2019.

In a 14-page court affidavit unsealed Thursday after her arrest, Rexburg Detective Ron Ball said Vallow was a flight risk because she and her husband Chad Daybell, 51, have significant financial resources.

“I am aware that Chad Daybell received at least $430,000 in life insurance proceeds upon the death of his wife Tammy,” Ball wrote. “As such, Lori and Chad have resources sufficient to help them travel and hide from law enforcement and the Court.”

Vallow and Daybell left Idaho amid questions from police about the children’s whereabouts.

“Chad acted as if he didn’t know Lori very well and stated he didn’t know her phone number,” Ball wrote in the affidavit.

Authorities have not been able to confirm whether the children are alive. They said there is nothing to indicate they are in Hawaii and that Vallow and Daybell have lied about where the kids could be.

JJ’s grandparents, Larry and Kay Woodcock of Louisiana were increasingly worried about the kids. Regular phone calls with JJ grew infrequent, then stopped in August.

“Alex told the detectives that [JJ] was with his grandma, Kay Woodcock, in Louisiana, which was not likely to be true due to the fact that Kay was the individual who first called in a missing child report,” Ball wrote in the affidavit.

He accused Vallow of lying to Rexburg police when she said in November that JJ was in Arizona with a friend. Her arrest came days after Vallow and Daybell were seen on the Hawaiian island of Maui, East Idaho News reported.

The couple married in November after the suspicious death of Daybell’s wife, Tammy Daybell.

Vallow’s fourth husband, Charles Vallow, died in July after being shot by her brother, Alex Cox, who claimed he acted in self-defense. Cox died in December. The death Tammy Daybell is under investigation.

Her body was exhumed and the results of toxicology and other testing have not yet been released.

Westlake Legal Group AP20030823416220 Lori Vallow held on $5M bail, extradition hearing set Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/west/idaho fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/us/crime fox-news/topic/missing-persons fox news fnc/us fnc article 877775b4-6c28-528d-988c-ff336cd1b72c

Joshua Vallow, 7, and Tylee Ryan, 17, are being sought by police in Rexberg, Idaho. Investigators are saying their mother, Lori Daybell, knows what happened to them but refuses to cooperate. (Rexberg Police Department)

Vallow’s family members have raised concerns that she may have joined a cult with Chad Daybell, the author of religious books about the biblical End Times.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

He also posted podcasts for an online organization aimed at church members, with an interest in preparing for biblical End Times. Vallow participated in some of the podcasts, and the two had grown close

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Westlake Legal Group AP20052232581750 Lori Vallow held on $5M bail, extradition hearing set Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/west/idaho fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/us/crime fox-news/topic/missing-persons fox news fnc/us fnc article 877775b4-6c28-528d-988c-ff336cd1b72c   Westlake Legal Group AP20052232581750 Lori Vallow held on $5M bail, extradition hearing set Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/west/idaho fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/us/crime fox-news/topic/missing-persons fox news fnc/us fnc article 877775b4-6c28-528d-988c-ff336cd1b72c

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Under O’Brien, N.S.C. Carries Out Trump’s Policy, but Doesn’t Develop It

Westlake Legal Group 14dc-nsc1-facebookJumbo Under O’Brien, N.S.C. Carries Out Trump’s Policy, but Doesn’t Develop It United States International Relations Syria O'Brien, Robert C (1952- ) National Security Council McMaster, H R China Bolton, John R Appointments and Executive Changes

WASHINGTON — When President Trump’s national security adviser, Robert C. O’Brien, convenes meetings with top National Security Council officials at the White House, he sometimes opens by distributing printouts of Mr. Trump’s latest tweets on the subject at hand.

The gesture amounts to an implicit challenge for those present. Their job is to find ways of justifying, enacting or explaining Mr. Trump’s policy, not to advise the president on what it should be.

That is the reverse of what the National Security Council was created to do at the Cold War’s dawn — to inform and advise the president on national security decisions. But under Mr. O’Brien, the White House’s hostage negotiator when Mr. Trump chose him to succeed John R. Bolton in September, that dynamic has often been turned on its head.

Mr. O’Brien, a dapper Los Angeles lawyer, convenes more regular and inclusive council meetings than Mr. Bolton. But developing policy is not really Mr. O’Brien’s mission. In the fourth year of his presidency and in his fourth national security adviser, Mr. Trump has finally gotten what he wants — a loyalist who enables his ideas instead of challenging them.

Two of Mr. O’Brien’s predecessors, Mr. Bolton and the retired Lt. Gen H.R. McMaster, had strong policy views informed by deep military or diplomatic experience that differed from Mr. Trump’s in basic ways, and each sought to steer his policies. Mr. O’Brien does not, and the limited role he plays reflects a broader change in the president’s national security team.

Mr. Trump’s original team included independent figures like Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson and the director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, who were considered “the adults” who could counter the president’s impulsive tendencies. They have been replaced by relatively little known loyalists anxious to carry out Mr. Trump’s will and eager to embrace his zeal in rooting out members of the so-called deep state involved in his impeachment or seen as dissidents.

In the president’s most recent personnel move, he replaced Joseph Maguire, the acting director of national intelligence, with Richard Grenell, an outspoken Trump supporter serving as ambassador to Germany who has no background in intelligence.

At the National Security Council, a particular target was Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman, a Ukraine expert who provided crucial testimony to support the impeachment of Mr. Trump, and was fired along with his twin brother, also an Army officer. Asked about their dismissals during an appearance last week at the Atlantic Council, a Washington think tank, the usually voluble Mr. O’Brien was curt.

“Their services were no longer needed,” he said. “We are not a country where a bunch of lieutenant colonels can get together and decide what the policy is of the United States. We are not a banana republic.”

In the years the since the National Security Council was started by President Harry S. Truman in 1947, its influence has fluctuated, depending on the president, the national security adviser and the relative power of the cabinet members and agency chiefs the national security adviser must coordinate.

Mr. O’Brien has said he is rebuilding an apolitical National Security Council, following the model of Brent Scowcroft, the national security adviser to Presidents Gerald Ford and George Bush, who was famed for acting as a neutral arbiter between the competing views of the Pentagon, the State Department, the intelligence agencies and the Treasury.

But virtually every national security adviser says they emulate Mr. Scowcroft. In reality, they selectively choose the elements of his style they admire. And many national security veterans see in Mr. O’Brien’s approach an intentional weakening of the council.

By the end of this month, Mr. O’Brien will have completed what he calls a streamlining of the National Security Council, chopping the council’s staff from 174 policy positions in October to fewer than 115.

The reductions have focused on the dozens of career officials who are detailed to the council from other federal departments and agencies, including the C.I.A., the Pentagon and the State Department. Former officials say the practice of loaning personnel, typically for terms of about 12 to 18 months, has blossomed over the years in part because it allows the White House to employ people without tapping its own budget.

It also means the White House is populated by career officials whose policy views do not necessarily reflect those of the president but which they are expected to mirror. Current and former Trump administration officials blame the detailees for not only slow-walking the enactment of some of Mr. Trump’s decisions with which they disagree, but also for undermining him with leaks to the news media. Reflecting widespread complaints among Trump allies, the Fox Business Network host Lou Dobbs, whose program Mr. Trump regularly watches, singled out the National Security Council as a hotbed of dissent during an interview last week with Mr. O’Brien.

“Given what we’ve witnessed in the three years, a little over three years, of this administration, I couldn’t blame the president if he said, ‘Keep them 50 blocks away,’” Mr. Dobbs said. “The vast number of those leaks that have been so harmful to the president and to the administration have come from the National Security Council. Hopefully that’s all changed as a result of your good efforts.”

Mr. O’Brien smiled and nodded in response.

Mr. O’Brien often notes that both Democrats and Republicans have long said the council, whose staff peaked at 236 policy staff members during the Obama era, had grown unwieldy, prone to micromanagement and in need of culling.

“One thing a polarized Washington has been able to agree on is that the N.S.C. got too big,” said John Gans, who has worked at the Pentagon and is the author of a book on the National Security Council.

But shrinking the size of the National Security Council may actually hurt the president’s agenda since it holds departments and agencies accountable for carrying it out, according to Nadia Schadlow, who served as Mr. McMaster’s deputy and was the principal author of Mr. Trump’s national security strategy.

“I understand why this is happening,” Ms. Schadlow said. “But at some point, it could hurt the implementation of the president’s policies.”

As Mr. O’Brien has whittled down the council he manages, and declaring it was all about efficiency, the president has made little effort to disguise his appetite for purging his own government. “DRAIN THE SWAMP!” he tweeted last week, adding: “We want bad people out of our government.”

The same day, Mr. Trump said in a radio interview that he may drastically limit how many national security officials can listen in on his calls with foreign leaders, breaking from decades of White House procedure. “I may end the practice entirely,” he said.

Such commentary “creates the clear impression that this is about retribution, not reform,” said Senator Christopher S. Murphy, a Democratic member of the Foreign Relations Committee.

But Mr. Murphy questioned how much the National Security Council’s structure really matters under a president who often rejects professional advice in making impulsive policy decisions. “It’s not terribly clear what the N.S.C. has been doing for the last three years,” he said. “The N.S.C.’s function now seems to be war-gaming for potential presidential tweets instead of developing policy recommendations for presidential decision-making.”

Mr. Trump is unlikely to mind that. After more than three years in office, he feels more confident than ever in his management of national security, aides say, especially after some of his major decisions — including the killing of the Iranian commander Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani — failed to elicit the disastrous consequences many experts predicted.

Mr. O’Brien’s willingness to trim the National Security Council, Mr. Gans said, “says something about Trump’s Washington.”

“The national security adviser should have the strongest staff possible,” he continued. “But it seems like Robert O’Brien is focused more on that audience of one — and making sure that Donald Trump is happy.”

The case of China may be the most vivid example of the council’s diminishment. In past administrations, the national security adviser has been central to the complex balancing of security and economic issues the making of China policy requires.

But Mr. O’Brien has been a minor player in the administration’s open warfare on China policy. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper have publicly called for a broad containment policy that would counter Beijing militarily and cripple key Chinese companies like Huawei, the telecommunications giant.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has taken the opposite view, working to mitigate the confrontation. And much of the White House policymaking has been overseen by Larry Kudlow, a key economic adviser loath to rattle markets.

Normally, the National Security Council would play a role in settling this kind of dispute. But when Mr. Trump tweeted on Tuesday against heavy restrictions on technology sales to China — days after Mr. Esper gave a fiery speech calling for just that — a White House meeting next week on the subject was abruptly postponed. Not only is the policy in some chaos, it is unclear who is supposed to resolve it.

Mr. Trump’s Syria policy is another case in point. When the president pledged in December 2018 to pull out of Syria, stunning top officials, Mr. Bolton worked to mitigate the decision, adding public conditions to the withdrawal that Mr. Trump had not mentioned.

But in October, when Mr. Trump abruptly pulled forces out of the way of a Turkish invasion of northeastern Syria, he did so with no National Security Council policy process — and no serious weighing of the costs to U.S. influence. Mr. O’Brien, still new to the job, offered no objections, officials say.

Mr. O’Brien held midlevel government posts, including a stint as a deputy to Mr. Bolton when he was ambassador to the United Nations before serving as Mr. Trump’s chief hostage negotiator.

He impressed the president in that job by securing the release of several Americans imprisoned by foreign governments and armed groups. Mr. Trump views the release of detained Americans as tactical “wins” that even his critics are reluctant to question, and Mr. O’Brien continues to pursue those cases in his new job.

Some White House aides joke that his experience navigating fraught situations is ideal preparation for serving Mr. Trump. The president, for his part, appreciates Mr. O’Brien’s quiet manner and tailored suits after his complaints about the gruff personalities and unstylish appearances of Mr. McMaster and Mr. Bolton, whose bushy mustache he often privately mocked.

Mr. O’Brien also gets along better than his predecessors did with Mr. Pompeo, who feuded with Mr. Bolton, and with Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who often gives foreign policy advice. And he has been friends with Mr. Grenell, the latest addition to the national security team, for over a decade.

He speaks with the president several times a day, often first thing in the morning and sometimes in the White House’s private residence before Mr. Trump descends to the Oval Office.

But he has no prior ties to Mr. Trump or previously known affinity for the president’s “America First” style of nationalism. A book of essays he published in 2016 channeled mainstream conservative views.

Some national security professionals who have worked with or advised Mr. O’Brien say that it is a mistake to underestimate him and that he has a deft managerial touch that reflects his tenure leading dozens of lawyers in the Los Angeles office of Arent Fox, the Washington law firm.

Others complain that he lacks fluency in policy details and delegates heavy lifting to his chief deputy, Matthew Pottinger, a former Wall Street Journal reporter and Marine who is among a handful of White House aides to survive all three years of Mr. Trump’s presidency.

In a television interview in late December, Mr. O’Brien incorrectly referred to the North Korean ruler, Kim Jong-un, swapping the leader’s surname for his given one. It was, his critics said, not a mistake that a more experienced official would have made.

Julian E. Barnes, Adam Goldman, Katie Rogers and Edward Wong contributed reporting.

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Tucker Carlson warns that America is being attacked by its own ‘ruling class’

Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson warns that America is being attacked by its own 'ruling class' Victor Garcia fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 6ba3dc4c-48ca-593f-8bf7-1a94901783aa

Tucker Carlson took on the “ruling class” Friday blasting them for negatively impacting America and highlighting their tactics as they lose their “grip on power.”

“Tonight, the story of American decline is the story of an incompetent ruling class. You’ll hear many self-serving explanations for it,” Carlson said on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “But the truth is, it’s that simple, the people in charge inherited an industrial superpower with unchallenged military dominance in a little more than a generation they squandered all of it in exchange for short term profits, bigger vacation homes, cheaper household help. They wrecked what they did not build.”

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Carlson said “the ruling class” outsourced parts of our economy to China, imported a “serf class” and “crippled the middle class.”

“But at this point, it’s clear the population has grown tired of it. Donald Trump’s election is one clear sign of that. The rise of Bernie Sanders is another,” Carlson said. “The ruling class, in other words, is losing its grip on power.”

The host said their first response was “denial,” citing the campaign of former Vice President Joe Biden.

“That didn’t work. And when it didn’t, they reverted to their governing instinct, which is authoritarianism. They stop trying to convince the public of anything and instead decided to scare them,” Carlson said, citing the recent resurgent reports that Russia is once again trying to secure President Trump the election.

Carlson also brought up reports from The Washington Post that Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders was also receiving help from Russia.

“Now, that happened two weeks ago. He learned about it weeks ago, but the Sanders campaign never leaked the story,” Carlson said. “Now, on the eve of the Nevada caucuses, someone in these so-called intelligence community did leak it, just as they repeatedly leak selective information in the first Russia hoax in an effort, of course, to derail Donald Trump, whose policies they disagreed with.”

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Carlson reiterated that the “ruling class” was the real threat to Democracy.

“Our democratic system is, in fact, under attack. That much is true. But it’s not the Russians who were attacking it. It’s not even the Chinese,” Carlson said. “It’s being attacked by our own ruling class.”

Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson warns that America is being attacked by its own 'ruling class' Victor Garcia fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 6ba3dc4c-48ca-593f-8bf7-1a94901783aa   Westlake Legal Group image Tucker Carlson warns that America is being attacked by its own 'ruling class' Victor Garcia fox-news/shows/tucker-carlson-tonight fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 6ba3dc4c-48ca-593f-8bf7-1a94901783aa

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Russia Wants To Help Bernie Sanders And Donald Trump. Only Trump Is Helping Russia.

Westlake Legal Group 5e506d40260000fd06b5f803 Russia Wants To Help Bernie Sanders And Donald Trump. Only Trump Is Helping Russia.

U.S. intelligence officials believe Russia is trying to boost Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the 2020 Democratic primary race as part of its interference in this year’s presidential election, according to Sanders and news reports on Friday.

Sanders moved to quickly and firmly reject Moscow’s involvement. His response was strikingly different from the way President Donald Trump has handled Russia’s meddling since the Republican first received Russian President Vladimir Putin’s support in the 2016 election and then was informed earlier this year that Putin wants to see him reelected.

“Unlike the current president, I stand firmly against their efforts, and any other foreign power that wants to interfere in our election,” Sanders said in a statement he issued after The Washington Post broke the news Friday of the Russian efforts to help him claim the Democratic nomination.

“I don’t care, frankly, who Putin wants to be president,” Sanders said. “My message to Putin is clear: stay out of American elections, and as president I will make sure that you do. In 2016, Russia used internet propaganda to sow division in our country, and my understanding is that they are doing it again in 2020.”

Four years ago, Putin used online support for Sanders to worsen splits within the Democratic Party as he sought to secure Trump’s election. His aim now could be two-fold: exacerbating Democratic divisions again to weaken the anti-Trump coalition while bolstering a Sanders candidacy some political analysts believe Trump would find easy to attack as extreme.

Sanders in his response on Friday focused on the national interest in rebuffing the Russian efforts. Campaigning in California on Friday, he told reporters, “It’s an ugly business, and all of us have got to say, sorry, you’re not going to do this in this election.”

Putin in 2016 could have viewed Sanders’ relative silence on foreign policy beyond criticizing U.S. overreach as a sign he might be sympathetic to Moscow. But the senator has since articulated a vision of foreign policy that’s wary of Putin’s aggressive ultra-nationalism and support for oligarchs. He’s shown that just because he is skeptical of muscular demonstrations of U.S. power like military interventions, he does not endorse forces trying to undermine the U.S. or spread disinformation on Washington’s role in global issues like the Syrian civil war.

In the 2016 campaign cycle, Trump denied receiving Russian support even as he openly invited it. His family and his advisors explored the possibility of such help privately and his aides ensured the GOP’s convention platform adopted a position on Ukraine softer than Republican orthodoxy at the time and in line with Putin’s interests. 

Once elected, Trump continued to reject the intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia had interfered in the election and did his best to denigrate and thwart special counsel Robert Mueller’s lengthy probe into the matterTrump continually has framed the concerns and findings about Russian interference as a personal attack on him by political enemies, and used the power of the U.S. government to push a conspiracy theory that exonerated Moscow. 

The New York Times reported last week that Trump became angry with Joseph McGuire, the acting director of national intelligence, for telling House lawmakers ― especially Democrats ― about Putin’s 2020 interference efforts. McGuire was replaced as the acting intelligence chief on Friday by Richard Grenell, a staunch Trump loyalist.

And in the Senate, Republicans are blocking legislation that would require campaigns to be more transparent about offers of foreign assistance.

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