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Westlake Legal Group > News Corporation (Page 29)

New Jersey’s assisted suicide law blocked by temporary restraining order

Westlake Legal Group AP19226656808917 New Jersey's assisted suicide law blocked by temporary restraining order Vandana Rambaran fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/religion fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/first-amendment fox-news/politics/state-and-local/issues fox-news/politics/state-and-local/controversies fox news fnc/politics fnc article 96da9a64-e2d2-5def-b227-69909d362ac6

A state judge in New Jersey issued a temporary restraining order Wednesday blocking the state’s right-to-die law from being implemented two weeks after it took effect.

The move came after Dr. Yosef Glassman, a Bergen County physician, filed a lawsuit, saying he refused to participate in assisted suicides, including referring patients to another doctor if he decides to opt-out of prescribing life-ending medication, which is a stipulation in the law.

Glassman said in the lawsuit that the law conflicts with his religious beliefs as an Orthodox Jew as well as his obligations as a doctor to heal people.

NEW JERSEY ASSISTED SUICIDE LAW TO GO INTO EFFECT THIS WEEK

Glassman said that being required to transfer medical records under the law is “not only a violation of the rights to practice medicine without breaching the fiduciary duties owing to those patients … but also violations of their First Amendment rights under the United States Constitution to freely practice their religions in which human life is sacred and must not be taken.”

Gov. Phil Murphy, a first-term Democrat who signed the Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill Act into law April 12, said he would fight back against Mercer County Superior Court Judge Paul Innes’s decision.

Murphy also asked Attorney General Gurbir Grewal to release guidance for New Jersey residents in light of the judge’s order.

“It is really hard for me, particularly given growing up as a Catholic,” Murphy said Thursday at a news conference. “This one was not an easy one to get to, but I got convinced that it shouldn’t be the law that dictates how things end. But it should be you and your loved ones.”

“It is really hard for me, particularly given growing up as a Catholic. This one was not an easy one to get to, but I got convinced that it shouldn’t be the law that dictates how things end. But it should be you and your loved ones.”

— New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy

The law, which took effect at the beginning of August but required a two-week wait period before doctors could administer prescriptions, permits adult patients with six months or less to live to obtain and self-administer life-ending medication. Patients must be diagnosed by two medical doctors and must also sign a written declaration with two witnesses present who can attest that the patient is acting voluntarily. The patient must also take the medication themselves.

“New Jersey’s assisted suicide law is a bad public policy that leaves many New Jersey residents at risk of abuse and coercion,” Kristen Hanson, a community advocate for the Patients Rights Action Fund said in a statement to Fox News on Thursday. “The temporary restraining order issued, which prevents the policy from going into effect, is a welcome reassessment of a law that threatens the lives of the poor, older people, the terminally ill, and people with disabilities. New Jersey deserves better end-of-life-care, not assisted suicide.”

“New Jersey’s assisted suicide law is a bad public policy that leaves many New Jersey residents at risk of abuse and coercion. … New Jersey deserves better end-of-life-care, not assisted suicide.”

— Kristen Hanson, community advocate, Patients Rights Action Fund

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The next court date is scheduled for Oct. 23.

Seven states — California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Oregon, Vermont and Washington — and Washington, D.C., all have similar legislation for medically assisted suicide, according to the Death With Dignity National Center and the Death With Dignity Political Fund.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Westlake Legal Group AP19226656808917 New Jersey's assisted suicide law blocked by temporary restraining order Vandana Rambaran fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/religion fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/first-amendment fox-news/politics/state-and-local/issues fox-news/politics/state-and-local/controversies fox news fnc/politics fnc article 96da9a64-e2d2-5def-b227-69909d362ac6   Westlake Legal Group AP19226656808917 New Jersey's assisted suicide law blocked by temporary restraining order Vandana Rambaran fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/religion fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/first-amendment fox-news/politics/state-and-local/issues fox-news/politics/state-and-local/controversies fox news fnc/politics fnc article 96da9a64-e2d2-5def-b227-69909d362ac6

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Tommy John wanted to know how many people change underwear every day. The results might surprise you

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Westlake Legal Group  Tommy John wanted to know how many people change underwear every day. The results might surprise you

Tommy John wanted to know how many people change underwear every day. The results might surprise you

A survey conducted by underwear brand Tommy John suggests a large percentage of Americans aren’t changing underwear every day.

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The latest sign that underwear is the new outer wear: some new men’s boxer briefs have pockets. USA TODAY

A survey released by underwear company Tommy John suggests Americans might not be changing their underwear.

Or, at least, quite a few aren’t bothering to put on a fresh pair every day. 

Tommy John surveyed 1,000 Americans and discovered 45 percent wore the same pair of underwear for “two days or longer.” The results of the survey were released this month on Tommy John’s website. 

Thirteen percent of those surveyed said they wore the same underwear for a week or more. Tommy John said men were 2.5 times more likely than women to wear the same underwear for a week or more.

Cool clothes: Bras, boxers and bracelets to chill from the inside out during a heat wave

In a separate survey of 1,000 people, 46 percent of those surveyed by Tommy John said they owned the same pair of underwear at least one year. An additional 38 percent said they had no idea how long they owned their oldest pair of underwear. 

“It’s crucial to update your underwear wardrobe every six months to a year to ensure you’re protected from harmful infections and health risks,” Tommy John said. “Women should be especially careful, as they’re more at risk than men to experience health issues due to unclean underwear.”

The company even provided a few tips for keeping underwear clean: 

  • Tumble dry your underwear on low heat for 30 minutes after washing. 
  • Don’t mix your underwear in the same load with your significant other or children if they’re sick. 
  • Avoid washing contaminated underwear with other pairs and clothing. 
  • Wash your underwear separately from clothing containing other bodily fluids. If any article of clothing is stained, it’s better to wash it separately from your underwear. 

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Watters: Biden campaign is ‘history repeating itself’ after former VP’s past flameouts

Westlake Legal Group watters1 Watters: Biden campaign is 'history repeating itself' after former VP's past flameouts fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/elections/presidential fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/joe-biden fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz be841b0b-fcfb-5add-bd34-3f110e13b89d article

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s 2020 Democratic presidential bid may meet the same end as his last two attempts to win the White House, according to Fox News’ Jesse Watters.

Biden’s recent gaffes, and a new report that the former U.S. senator from Delaware may scale back his campaign appearances as a result, are troubling, Watters claimed Thursday on “Hannity.”

“He needs to call the MyPillow guy and nap off some of these gaffes,” Watters said, referring to entrepreneur and outspoken Trump supporter Michael Lindell.

“I don’t think he’s going to make it, I literally don’t,” Watters added about Biden. “He’s mixing up cities, he’s forgetting when he was vice president.” (Biden previously misstated the locations of two recent mass shootings and mistakenly said another had occurred while he was vice president when it actually occurred about a year after he left the job.)

“He needs to call the MyPillow guy and nap off some of these gaffes. …  He’s mixing up cities, he’s forgetting when he was vice president.”

— Jesse Watters

GAFFE-PRONE BIDEN SHOULDN’T BE CLOISTERED, OBAMA AIDE SAYS

“He flamed out the last two primaries. History is repeating itself,” Watters said. He added that Biden appeared to get “knocked around” by fellow 2020 contender Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., at a June debate, as well as by past claims of inappropriate touching.

Watters also pointed to parts of Biden’s campaign platform he found problematic.

“Think about what he said about China, about giving health care to illegal aliens, raising middle-class taxes, and eliminating oil and natural gas,” he said. “The flip-flopping and the apologizing — it’s insane.”

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In the past, Biden made two previous attempts at running for president.

In 1988, he ran unsuccessfully in a primary that was ultimately won by then-Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis. In 2008 he ran again but the Democratic Party nomination ultimately went to then-Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., who chose Biden as his running mate.

Earlier Thursday, former Obama adviser David Axelrod claimed the report of a scaled-back campaign schedule was a troubling development for the ex-vice president.

“This is bad advice. You can’t cloister the candidate and win,” Axelrod tweeted.

Westlake Legal Group watters1 Watters: Biden campaign is 'history repeating itself' after former VP's past flameouts fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/elections/presidential fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/joe-biden fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz be841b0b-fcfb-5add-bd34-3f110e13b89d article   Westlake Legal Group watters1 Watters: Biden campaign is 'history repeating itself' after former VP's past flameouts fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/elections/presidential fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/joe-biden fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/entertainment/media fox news fnc/media fnc Charles Creitz be841b0b-fcfb-5add-bd34-3f110e13b89d article

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Whitney Port says she 'regrets' turning down 'one-night stand' with Leonardo DiCaprio

CLOSEWestlake Legal Group icon_close Whitney Port says she 'regrets' turning down 'one-night stand' with Leonardo DiCaprio

Leonardo DiCaprio’s girlfriend Camila Morrone is firing back at “mean” trolls who criticized the couple’s 22-year age difference. Wochit

Whitney Port’s biggest regret in life involves Leonardo DiCaprio.

While many suitors dream of a late-night rendezvous with the Hollywood hunk, “The Hills” star, now 34, said she had a chance over a decade ago but regrettably passed.

“I was nervous. I had never had a one-night stand,” she confessed on her podcast, “With Whit,” Monday. “I didn’t want to be with him alone… I was way too nervous to do it and then I lost my chance and it’s really one of my bigger regrets in life.”

Port said it all went down in 2009, when she met the Oscar award-winner during a night of partying in Manhattan. They exchanged numbers after DiCaprio approached her and implied that he watched her reality show, “The City,” according to Port.

Leonardo DiCaprio’s girlfriend:Camila Morrone breaks her silence on their 22-year age gap

After months of texting on BlackBerry Messenger, Port said DiCaprio invited her out on a date and asked if she wanted to come over afterward. “He invited me back over to his house and I said ‘no,'” she recalled while talking with longtime friend, Andrea Cuttler. 

“I have been dying to tell people this story for ages,” Port said. “I feel like whenever I tell it to friends, no one believes me.”

She continued: “If you didn’t think I was cool, now you probably do!”

USA TODAY reached out to DiCaprio’s rep for comment.

‘My body is still my own right now’:‘The Hills’ Whitney Port felt ‘guilt’ in miscarriage

But, everything seemed to work out for Port, who married “The City” producer Tim Rosenman in 2015. The pair welcomed son Sonny Sanford Rosenman in 2017.

Port returned to reality television earlier this year on MTV’s “The Hills: New Beginnings,” a sequel to “The Hills,” which she originally starred on for four seasons from 2006 to 2008.

More: MTV is bringing back ‘The Hills’, these ‘New Beginnings’ won’t remain ‘Unwritten’

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Hannity: Crowd’s treatment of Philly police officers ‘beyond repulsive’; Dems ‘politicize’ shooting

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6073460957001_6073463744001-vs Hannity: Crowd's treatment of Philly police officers 'beyond repulsive'; Dems 'politicize' shooting Victor Garcia fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7313ccd1-8f7c-5d41-a9f6-7ede5a2197c6

Fox News’ Sean Hannity honored the Philadelphia police officers caught up in Wednesday’s shootout, saying they “deserved better” after video showed them being taunted during the incident where six police officers were shot.

“These officers saving countless lives putting themselves in harm’s way. And there are people that are taunting them, pelting them with objects. Treating them this way is beyond repulsive,” Hannity said Thursday on his television show. They deserve better.”

6 PHILADELPHIA OFFICERS WOUNDED IN SHOOTING

Hannity also blasted many of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates for politicizing the shooting as it was taking place.

“All these people risking their lives serving and protecting the people of Philadelphia. Kamala Harris is in the comfort of a ‘fake news’ CNN studio, hawking a political agenda about something she knows nothing about,” Hannity said.

“Kamala Harris is in the comfort of a ‘fake news’ CNN studio, hawking a political agenda about something she knows nothing about.”

— Sean Hannity

“Several other 2020 Democratic hopefuls also. Yes, shamelessly, weighing in during the ongoing standoff. They don’t even wait for it to end.”

The Fox News host called the reaction by Democrats “sad.”

“Even now after another shooting Democrats the media mob they’re almost too giddy at a chance once again to politicize a tragedy. Very predictable very sad,” Hannity said.

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Hannity argued that the shooting had nothing to do with gun control and that most gun owners were responsible.

“Those of us who follow the law are responsible gun owners. We would be left totally unarmed and defenseless,” Hannity said. “Once you give away your rights you’re never gonna get them back.”

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6073460957001_6073463744001-vs Hannity: Crowd's treatment of Philly police officers 'beyond repulsive'; Dems 'politicize' shooting Victor Garcia fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7313ccd1-8f7c-5d41-a9f6-7ede5a2197c6   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6073460957001_6073463744001-vs Hannity: Crowd's treatment of Philly police officers 'beyond repulsive'; Dems 'politicize' shooting Victor Garcia fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/shows/hannity fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7313ccd1-8f7c-5d41-a9f6-7ede5a2197c6

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Eagles lose yet another quarterback, Cody Kessler, to injury as Carson Wentz sits out

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — It didn’t take long for the Philadelphia Eagles to lose another quarterback as Cody Kessler left the game 2½ minutes in after getting leveled from behind by a Jacksonville Jaguars defender on Thursday night.

This came one week after Nate Sudfeld suffered a broken wrist against the Tennessee Titans.

The Eagles announced that Kessler has a concussion. Kessler can’t play again until he gets cleared by an independent neurologist after going through the concussion protocol.

Clayton Thorson, the Eagles’ fifth-round draft pick, replaced him and played the rest of the game in the Eagles’ 24-10 win.

Will the Eagles sign a quarterback now? 

“We’ll evaluate Cody again (Friday) and over the weekend,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said. “We’re going to get through the next few days, we’re going to evaluate everything.”

The Eagles have held starter Carson Wentz out of both preseason games so far, not willing to risk their franchise quarterback to injury. The Eagles can continue to hold Wentz out of games if Kessler can return by next Thursday’s game against Baltimore.

Westlake Legal Group  Eagles lose yet another quarterback, Cody Kessler, to injury as Carson Wentz sits out

REDSKINS ROOKIE REBOUNDS:Haskins impresses in second preseason game

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If Kessler doesn’t return, that will leave Clayton Thorson as the only quarterback active for the game next Thursday. The Eagles could use wide receivers Braxton Miller and Greg Ward, both of whom were quarterbacks in college.

Otherwise, they might need another quarterback just to get through the game.

Against the Jaguars, Thorson was the only quarterback left, although the Eagles do have two wide receivers who were accomplished college quarterbacks in Greg Ward and Braxton Miller. 

Ward, who caught a 38-yard touchdown pass from Thorson on 4th-and-4 from the Jaguars’ 38 yard line in the first minute of the second quarter, said he was ready to go in at quarterback if needed.

“I knew that was a possibility if the next guy went down that I was maybe going to go out there,” he said.

Ward did throw a pass on a handoff from Thorson. He underthrew a deep ball intended for Carlton Agudosi, and it was knocked down.

“That kind of got away from me,” he said. “I gotta get back to the drawing board. I want that one back.”

Thorson, meanwhile, was much better than he was in his debut last week, when he went 2-for-9 for 7 yards and an interception. Against the Jaguars, Thorson completed 16 of 26 passes for 175 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

Thorson twice completed passes on fourth down – the first a 38-yarder to Ward on 4th-and-4, the second a 25-yard completion to Will Tye to the Jaguars’ 13 yard line on 4th-and-3.

“It’s nice to get into a little rhythm,” Thorson said. “It’s too bad about Cody, but he’ll be alright. You never like to come in that way, but you just gotta make the most of your opportunities. It was nice to play a little bit. I enjoyed being out there, getting the ball to the different playmakers that we got. It was a lot of fun.”

Until Kessler’s injury, it had seemed like the drama was going to take place nearly two hours before the game, when Wentz jogged over to midfield, gave Nick Foles a hug and spent about five minutes talking to the former Eagles quarterback.

Other players and coaches stopped by as well. 

Then the two quarterbacks stood on the sidelines and watched the game, along with many of the starters.

It was easy to see why when Kessler dropped back to pass on 2nd-and-12 from the Jaguars’ 42. He was looking to his right when Jaguars defensive end Datone Jones barrelled in from the left side of the Eagles’ offensive line and hit Kessler in the back as he threw incomplete.

Kessler was slow getting up. In fact, the Eagles called a timeout to give Kessler a chance to recover. But trainers came out to the field, talked to him, then walked with him off the field.

Just like that, the Eagles lost another quarterback.

Follow the Delaware News Journal‘s Martin Frank on Twitter @Mfranknfl.

Westlake Legal Group  Eagles lose yet another quarterback, Cody Kessler, to injury as Carson Wentz sits out

If you love talking football, we have the perfect spot for you. Join our Facebook Group, The Ruling Off the Field, to engage in friendly debate and conversation with fellow football fans and our NFL insiders.

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Trump administration urging lawmakers to reauthorize NSA data collection program

Westlake Legal Group 15d8dc28-Capture Trump administration urging lawmakers to reauthorize NSA data collection program Louis Casiano fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox news fnc/politics fnc d2336610-3b08-5d34-87fd-ed757ecf9816 article

The Trump administration is urging lawmakers to reauthorize a mass phone data collection program set to expire later this year that would let the National Security Agency collect the phone record information of millions of Americans, according to media reports.

In a later addressed to the top members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Senate Intelligence Committee, departing Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats outlined his position on the USA Freedom Act.

Coats’ last day as director was Thursday.

“I write to express the support of the Intelligence Community (IC) and Administration for the permanent reauthorization of the provisions of the USA Freedom Act of 2015 that are currently set to expire in December,” Coats wrote.

COSTS OF SNOWDEN LEAK STILL MOUNTING 5 YEARS LATER

“These provisions provide the [intelligence community] with key national security authorities, and we look forward to working with the Congress on their permanent reauthorization,” he added.

Coats also asked Congress to reauthorize steps that would let investigators wiretap “lone wolf” terrorists and collect business records during terror investigations, according to the politics website.

The NSA did not immediately respond to a Fox News request for comment.

Congress passed the USA Freedom Act in 2015 after the fallout from disclosures from whistleblower Edward Snowden about a previous program that collected vast amounts of information about Americans’ phone calls and text messages.

FORMER NSA CONTRACTOR PLEADS GUILTY IN THEFT OF CLASSIFIED DOCUMENTS

The NSA shuttered the call records provision of the Freedom Act, but Congress could reinstate it if needed, which could alarm privacy advocates. The record collection program allows the government to collect data from phones calls, including the length of calls and when information is sent via calls or text messages.

“The National Security Agency has suspended the call detail records program that uses this authority and deleted the call detail records acquired under this authority,” Coats wrote. “This decision was made after balancing the program’s relative intelligence value, associated costs, and compliance and data integrity concerns caused by the unique complexities of using these company-generated business records for intelligence purposes.”

He added that “as technology changes, our adversaries’ tradecraft and communications habits will continue to evolve and adapt. In light of this dynamic environment, the Administration supports reauthorization of this provision as well.”

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On Wednesday, a coalition of nearly 40 activist groups sent leaders of the House Judiciary Committee a letter asking to end the collection of phone data., arguing the sensitive information of millions could be revealed.

It was unclear how much congressional support there was for the metadata collection program. A spokesperson for California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Coats’ letter was under review.

Westlake Legal Group 15d8dc28-Capture Trump administration urging lawmakers to reauthorize NSA data collection program Louis Casiano fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox news fnc/politics fnc d2336610-3b08-5d34-87fd-ed757ecf9816 article   Westlake Legal Group 15d8dc28-Capture Trump administration urging lawmakers to reauthorize NSA data collection program Louis Casiano fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/executive/national-security fox news fnc/politics fnc d2336610-3b08-5d34-87fd-ed757ecf9816 article

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Trump Is Said to Ask: Can We Buy Greenland?

Westlake Legal Group 15DC-GREENLAND-facebookJumbo Trump Is Said to Ask: Can We Buy Greenland? United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Margrethe II, Queen of Denmark Greenland Frederiksen, Mette Denmark

President Trump has been urging aides to explore a way to buy Greenland from Denmark, according to three people familiar with the discussions.

His interest in Greenland began last year. At a meeting that spring in the Oval Office, he joked about buying Greenland for its resources, according to a person who was in attendance.

In the year since, the president has repeatedly returned to the topic, asking aides if they can pursue a purchase of Greenland, a semiautonomous territory that Mr. Trump has been taken with in part because of its natural resources, like coal and uranium.

Privately, Mr. Trump’s advisers are highly skeptical that such a move could ever happen. But instead of telling him they do not think it is possible, the advisers have agreed to investigate the matter, according to the people briefed on the discussions.

His interest in buying Greenland was first reported Thursday by The Wall Street Journal. Greenland, a self-governing country, is part of the kingdom of Denmark, where Mr. Trump is scheduled to visit in September to meet with the prime minister, Mette Frederiksen; Queen Margrethe II; and the leaders of Greenland and the Faroe Islands.

The White House declined to comment.

Mr. Trump is a former real estate developer who tends to view his presidency through the lens of acquisitions. But the territory appeals to him partly because of its national security value given its location, according to two of the people briefed on the discussions.

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Trump talked to colleagues about buying Greenland, reports say

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Trump talked to colleagues about buying Greenland, reports say

The U.S. reportedly proposed buying Greenland from Denmark in 1946 for $100 million.

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We’ve known for a while that ice sheets in Greenland, in the Antarctic are melting, but the issue has become much worse, much faster than we thought. Buzz60

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump has occasionally talked to colleagues about buying Greenland, according to media reports.

The Wall Street Journal first reported Thursday that people familiar with discussions said Trump on multiple occasions raised the idea of buying Greenland from Denmark during meetings and dinners. He reportedly “listened with interest when they discuss its abundant resources and geopolitical importance,” according to the Journal. The White House counsel was asked to research the possibility, the Journal reported.

However, the president was reportedly not serious about the idea, the Associated Press reported Thursday. The Journal likewise reported that Trump’s interest in the strategically important island has been characterized by “varying degrees of seriousness.”

Trump bashes NH protester: ‘That guy’s got a serious weight problem’

Related: Donald Trump supporters at New Hampshire rally not concerned with market slide, recession fears

The U.S. reportedly proposed buying Greenland from Denmark in 1946 for $100 million, the AP and the Journal both reported. 

The White House did not respond to request for comment from USA TODAY.

Contributing: John Fritze

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Andrew McCarthy: Dem views on Russia change dramatically

Westlake Legal Group Barack-Obama Andrew McCarthy: Dem views on Russia change dramatically National Review fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/barack-obama fox-news/opinion fox-news/news-events/russia-investigation fnc/opinion fnc article Andrew McCarthy ad547496-77c5-54e9-b10e-e68f02d04095

Editor’s note: Andrew C. McCarthy’s new book is “Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency.” This is the second in a series of excerpts.

“The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.”

Thus spoke President Barack Obama just a couple of weeks before Election Day 2012. With the race still thought to be tight, he had come to the candidates’ final debate loaded for bear.

Earlier in the campaign, his Republican rival, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, had the temerity to pronounce that Russia was, “without question, our number-one geopolitical foe.” The incumbent president regarded this as an absurd anachronism. So that night, he brought the snark. Hadn’t anyone informed Romney that “the Cold War’s been over for 20 years”?

As is generally the case, neither extreme of political posturing has been accurate. Romney was right that Putin’s Russia is a significant rival on the world stage. Whether it is “number one” on the tally sheet is debatable.

To figure that out, we’d have to make judgment calls about all the threats we face — immediate versus long-term, forcible versus other forms of aggression, ideological versus transactional, and so on.

No need to dawdle over that. It suffices to say that the Russian regime is a serious adversary. It has a formidable nuclear arsenal, as well as highly capable military and intelligence forces. Its default posture is anti-American (though it is biddable). It cooperates effectively with other anti-American regimes and factions.

Russia’s veto power in the United Nations Security Council complicates our government’s capacity to act in American interests. It has a Soviet iciness about the use of terrorism and forges alliances with terrorists in the pursuit of its interests. The regime is ruthless in its determination to remain in power, it has revanchist ambitions, and it is shrewd in testing the West’s resolve — or lack of same — to respond to incremental aggressions that implicate NATO and other commitments.

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Obama tut-tutted that this Republican nostalgia for the foreign policy of the 1980s was of a piece with the GOP’s desire to revive the “social policy of the 1950s and the economic policies of the 1920s.” Yes, that was your Democratic standard-bearer, what seems like only yesterday.

No longer was this the party of Harry Truman and Jack Kennedy. To Obama-era Democrats, arguing that Russia was a real threat, that it longed for a return to Soviet hegemony, was akin to calling for the return of Jim Crow and the adoption of protectionist practices that helped ignite the Great Depression.

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But then Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election, and Democrats decided they’d best return that call from the 1980s after all. It turns out Russia — the Russia against whose serial aggressions Obama took little meaningful action throughout his eight years in office — really is our “Numero Uno” geopolitical foe. Turns out the Cold War isn’t “so last century.”

Since Nov. 8, 2016, in ever-evolving Democratic dogma, Russia has gone from a quaint obsession of neocon warmongers to an existential threat on the order of climate change!

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