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Westlake Legal Group > News Corporation (Page 89)

SamTrans accused of playing ‘musical chairs’ with homeless, busing them to San Francisco and abandoning them

Westlake Legal Group b24c5eb1-san-francisco-homeless-2 SamTrans accused of playing 'musical chairs' with homeless, busing them to San Francisco and abandoning them fox-news/us/us-regions/west/nevada fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/transportation fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/san-francisco fox-news/topic/sanctuary-cities fox-news/topic/homeless-crisis fox news fnc/us fnc ef84e786-01ee-55f6-b833-587d7c9e5850 Barnini Chakraborty article

The blame game is in full swing in the Bay Area following allegations that counties are playing “musical chairs” with their homeless population – using resources to shuttle transients, drug addicts and the mentally ill to San Francisco and abandoning them.

San Mateo County’s newly-expanded SamTrans bus service starts at the Peninsula and ends at the Embarcadero in San Francisco.

SamTrans was recently caught on camera dropping off groups of homeless men and women onto city streets and parks at the end of the line near the waterfront.

HOMELESSNESS CRISIS: FROM HOUSEBOATS TO BUILDERS, UNCONVENTIONAL METHODS USED TO TACKLE PROBLEMS IN 2019

Some of those same passengers had been put on the bus at the San Francisco International Airport, which is located in San Mateo County, by cops seen handing out free bus tokens to keep the homeless from sleeping in the terminals.

The late-night shuffle ends when the homeless are kicked off the bus at the last stop around 2:30 a.m. From there, they are often dazed and confused about where they are and how they got there. They then spend time wandering aimlessly along the tourist-heavy areas in the early-morning hours.

“It’s unconscionable that agencies are playing what appears to be musical chairs with the homeless,” Supervisor Aaron Peskin, whose district includes the location where the SamTrans line ends, told the San Francisco Chronicle. “This is just the type of homeless dumping that we sued the state of Nevada over a few years back.”

He was referring to the 2015  “Greyhound therapy” lawsuit that found Nevada was giving unwanted psychiatric patients one-way tickets to California.

“It’s unconscionable that agencies are playing what appears to be musical chairs with the homeless.”

— Aaron Peskin, San Francisco City Supervisor

SamTrans Public Affairs Specialist Dan Lieberman says the situation isn’t as cut and dry as people think and believes that many of the homeless who are put on the buses at the airport are actually from San Francisco.

“From what we understand these are homeless people who end up at SFO and are specifically given a SamTrans token to go back to San Francisco,” he told ABC7.  “Giving people rides is what we do here. If someone pays their fare and wants to get on the bus we are going to take them on the bus.”

The result has been a sloppy, dangerous game with homeless people stuck in the middle.

Last year, the Bay Area Rapid Transit also came under fire for how it handled transients. The train had become a temporary shelter for the area’s homeless, which led to many homeless riders being stranded at the end of the night on the last stop on the BART line, with the nearest shelter about 5 miles away.

Democratic Mayor London Breed said this week she couldn’t confirm allegations that the homeless were being bused into San Francisco – though there is recorded proof of it happening multiple times – and said the city attorney’s office would look into the matter.

“It’s unfortunate, if it is happening and our goal is to address it appropriately,” she told ABC7. “There will have to be an investigation because we would need to determine whether or not there’s evidence that this has occurred.”

San Francisco native Robert Holt told Fox News he doesn’t expect much from the mayor’s word to look into the situation.

“We’ve gotten used to pledges and promises from her but there seems to be more homeless people on the street than ever,” he said.

SAN FRANCISCO HOMELESS STATS SOAR: CITY BLAMES BIG BUSINESS, RESIDENTS BLAME OFFICIALS 

Former mayoral candidate Richie Greenberg agrees.

“Elected officials like Breed are less likely to speak out against other elected officials because it would hurt them politically or make it look like their colleagues aren’t doing their jobs,” he told Fox News.

The disturbing new allegations that nearby counties are dumping their homeless in San Francisco come at a time when the city has been struggling with a double-digit jump in its homelessness rate and residents are turning on elected officials for their inability to reverse the trend.

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A preliminary homeless count released in May showed the number of homeless had jumped 17 percent from 2017. However, when the final report was released a couple of months later, it showed the street count increase would have been 30 percent if the city had stuck to the same definition of homelessness as they had in the past.

Critics claim the city chose to use the federal definition of homelessness instead of the one they wrote themselves in order to look like progress was being made. City officials have denied those allegations.

Westlake Legal Group b24c5eb1-san-francisco-homeless-2 SamTrans accused of playing 'musical chairs' with homeless, busing them to San Francisco and abandoning them fox-news/us/us-regions/west/nevada fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/transportation fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/san-francisco fox-news/topic/sanctuary-cities fox-news/topic/homeless-crisis fox news fnc/us fnc ef84e786-01ee-55f6-b833-587d7c9e5850 Barnini Chakraborty article   Westlake Legal Group b24c5eb1-san-francisco-homeless-2 SamTrans accused of playing 'musical chairs' with homeless, busing them to San Francisco and abandoning them fox-news/us/us-regions/west/nevada fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/disasters/transportation fox-news/us/crime fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/san-francisco fox-news/topic/sanctuary-cities fox-news/topic/homeless-crisis fox news fnc/us fnc ef84e786-01ee-55f6-b833-587d7c9e5850 Barnini Chakraborty article

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PETA calls out Conor McGregor, ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone over python jacket

It looks like PETA wants to enter the octagon with Conor McGregor and “Cowboy” Cerrone this weekend.

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals called out the famous UFC fighters on Twitter after McGregor and competitor Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone had a friendly back-and-forth about the latter’s python jacket.

WEDDING GUEST SLAMMED FOR ‘GROSS’ RESPONSE TO INVITATION: ‘HOW TACKY CAN YOU GET?’

The exchange, which took place during a press conference with the two fighters before their upcoming fight Saturday, started with McGregor interrupting Cerrone to compliment his coat.

“That’s one hell of a coat, Donald, my God. I got to give credit where credit is due,” McGregor starts, before asking why kind of material it is.

“It’s python,” Cerrone answered. “I’m sure PETA might be here because I got rattlesnakes on and python.”

McGregor, who called PETA “shady,” responded that the group has “a warrant out for me as well.” It was a sentiment that proved to be true, as the animal rights organization quickly responded to McGregor’s statements on Twitter, slamming the fighters.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“Hi @TheNotoriousMMA and @CowboyCerrone!” the tweet read. “You’re right! We ARE here — to remind you that only COWARDS would brag about wearing an animal who was likely beaten & skinned alive. Why don’t you knock out your insecurities and only wear your OWN skin?”

In a graphic statement to Fox News, PETA UK Director Elisa Allen revealed the group would be going a step farther, and contacting each of the fighters to stop wearing animal skin.

“Cerrone and McGregor may be known for being tough guys in the Octagon, but the ultimate challenge for these fighters would be to watch PETA’s stomach-turning exposés, which show workers peeling snakes’ skin off while they’re still conscious. Pythons, who are taken from their jungle homes, are often nailed to trees and skinned alive so that their skins can be turned into coats, shoes, belts, and bags. Many of them suffer for hours or days as they slowly die. PETA will be writing to the pair with information and a simple request: be a fighting champ for animals and knock exotic skins out of your wardrobe,” the statement read.

Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338

In a graphic statement to Fox News, PETA UK Director Elisa Allen revealed the group would be going a step further and contacting each of the fighters to stop wearing animal skin. (Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

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Cerrone reportedly responded to the group’s criticism, seeming to egg them on further with a statement saying he would wear human skin, if legal.

“Man, I guess if killing humans was legal I could probably wear a bad-ass human jacket,” Cerrone said, Hometown Life reported. “I got a white buffalo at home, PETA. And when she crokes [sic], I’m going to wear a (expletive) (expletive) ass white buffalo cape one of these days. At the ranch I have a lot of animals: turkeys, goats, chickens, pigs. We kill them and butcher them, and we eat them all ourselves, man. We use every bit of them. So it’s not like – I don’t just go down to the store and buy beef. We raise it and kill it and eat it. So, if there’s something inhumane or unjust about killing beef for my own sake, PETA, you’re (expletive) up.

“Granted, I didn’t kill the snake or raise the snake to build a python jacket, but (expletive) it was (expletive) cool, so I had to wear to it.”

McGregor did not seem to respond to PETA comments.

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PETA is no stranger to calling out MMA fighters. Last year, the group criticized UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov for wrestling a bear.

Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338   Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338

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

Walmart issues apology to Paul Walker’s family after backlash from insensitive tweet

Walmart issued an apology to the late actor Paul Walker’s “family, friends and fans” after users found a tweet from the chain’s official Twitter account to be insensitive.

The famous retail chain made an attempt to engage in a lighthearted exchange with its customers on social media by quoting a line from the Comedy Central series “Workaholics.”

“Hey Paul Walker. Click it, or ticket,” the company’s Twitter page wrote in response to a fan posting a gif of a car racing through traffic to represent rushing to Walmart to pick up some Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls being sold there.

PAUL WALKER SHARED THE SCREEN WITH THESE LATINO CELEBRITIES

The tweet has since been removed after several people noted it was insensitive given the fact that the actor tragically died in a car accident in 2013.

In a statement to Fox News, the company apologized for the tweet.

“We apologize to Paul Walker’s family, friends and fans,” the statement from a Walmart spokesperson reads. “The tweet was posted in poor judgement and has been removed.”

‘FAST &FURIOUS’ ACTOR PAUL WALKER REMEMBERED FIVE YEARS AFTER DEATH

As USA Today notes, the line from “Workaholics” being quoted came from a 2011 episode that aired prior to the actor’s death at age 40. Walker, best known for his role as Brian O’Conner in the “Fast and the Furious” franchise, was riding in the passenger seat of a car that crashed in Santa Clarita, Calif. in November 2013. The driver was determined to be Roger Rodas, a friend of the actor’s who owned a sports car dealership.

Westlake Legal Group Paul-Walker-2 Walmart issues apology to Paul Walker's family after backlash from insensitive tweet Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/dwayne-the-rock-johnson fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/viral fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6e78bf0f-c5d7-5eeb-928c-e564048bf799

Paul Walker died in a car accident in 2013. (Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images for Universal Pictures)

Vin Diesel and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, were among the late actor’s co-stars who took to social media in September 2019 to honor him on what would have been his 46th birthday.

“Normally today I would be planning how to embarrass you with a birthday cake. Haha,” Diesel wrote at the time. “Instead I reflect on how lucky I am to call you my brother. The tears never go away, but they change… from that of mourning to that of grace. We only hope to make you proud. Speaking of which, guess what message I woke up to… your daughter. Meadow sending me love on this day. Wow, she knows me so well. She has your heart. Happy birthday… it’s amazing, but somehow you continue to make the world a better place.”

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Johnson wrote in part: “Something about today compelled me as a moving reminder of how fragile life is for all of us. It’s Paul’s birthday and rightfully so, his legacy celebrated around the world. Our friendship was bonded over our daughters and the pride and protection we took being their fathers.”

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Westlake Legal Group Paul-Walker-2 Walmart issues apology to Paul Walker's family after backlash from insensitive tweet Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/dwayne-the-rock-johnson fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/viral fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6e78bf0f-c5d7-5eeb-928c-e564048bf799   Westlake Legal Group Paul-Walker-2 Walmart issues apology to Paul Walker's family after backlash from insensitive tweet Tyler McCarthy fox-news/person/dwayne-the-rock-johnson fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/viral fox-news/entertainment/events/departed fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 6e78bf0f-c5d7-5eeb-928c-e564048bf799

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PETA calls out Conor McGregor, ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone over python jacket

It looks like PETA wants to enter the octagon with Conor McGregor and “Cowboy” Cerrone this weekend.

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals called out the famous UFC fighters on Twitter after McGregor and competitor Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone had a friendly back-and-forth about the latter’s python jacket.

WEDDING GUEST SLAMMED FOR ‘GROSS’ RESPONSE TO INVITATION: ‘HOW TACKY CAN YOU GET?’

The exchange, which took place during a press conference with the two fighters before their upcoming fight Saturday, started with McGregor interrupting Cerrone to compliment his coat.

“That’s one hell of a coat, Donald, my God. I got to give credit where credit is due,” McGregor starts, before asking why kind of material it is.

“It’s python,” Cerrone answered. “I’m sure PETA might be here because I got rattlesnakes on and python.”

McGregor, who called PETA “shady,” responded that the group has “a warrant out for me as well.” It was a sentiment that proved to be true, as the animal rights organization quickly responded to McGregor’s statements on Twitter, slamming the fighters.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“Hi @TheNotoriousMMA and @CowboyCerrone!” the tweet read. “You’re right! We ARE here — to remind you that only COWARDS would brag about wearing an animal who was likely beaten & skinned alive. Why don’t you knock out your insecurities and only wear your OWN skin?”

In a graphic statement to Fox News, PETA UK Director Elisa Allen revealed the group would be going a step farther, and contacting each of the fighters to stop wearing animal skin.

“Cerrone and McGregor may be known for being tough guys in the Octagon, but the ultimate challenge for these fighters would be to watch PETA’s stomach-turning exposés, which show workers peeling snakes’ skin off while they’re still conscious. Pythons, who are taken from their jungle homes, are often nailed to trees and skinned alive so that their skins can be turned into coats, shoes, belts, and bags. Many of them suffer for hours or days as they slowly die. PETA will be writing to the pair with information and a simple request: be a fighting champ for animals and knock exotic skins out of your wardrobe,” the statement read.

Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338

In a graphic statement to Fox News, PETA UK Director Elisa Allen revealed the group would be going a step further and contacting each of the fighters to stop wearing animal skin. (Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR OUR LIFESTYLE NEWSLETTER

Cerrone reportedly responded to the group’s criticism, seeming to egg them on further with a statement saying he would wear human skin, if legal.

“Man, I guess if killing humans was legal I could probably wear a bad-ass human jacket,” Cerrone said, Hometown Life reported. “I got a white buffalo at home, PETA. And when she crokes [sic], I’m going to wear a (expletive) (expletive) ass white buffalo cape one of these days. At the ranch I have a lot of animals: turkeys, goats, chickens, pigs. We kill them and butcher them, and we eat them all ourselves, man. We use every bit of them. So it’s not like – I don’t just go down to the store and buy beef. We raise it and kill it and eat it. So, if there’s something inhumane or unjust about killing beef for my own sake, PETA, you’re (expletive) up.

“Granted, I didn’t kill the snake or raise the snake to build a python jacket, but (expletive) it was (expletive) cool, so I had to wear to it.”

McGregor did not seem to respond to PETA comments.

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK FOR MORE FOX LIFESTYLE NEWS

PETA is no stranger to calling out MMA fighters. Last year, the group criticized UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov for wrestling a bear.

Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338   Westlake Legal Group Cowboy-Cerrone PETA calls out Conor McGregor, 'Cowboy' Cerrone over python jacket fox-news/style-and-beauty fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/lifestyle fnc article Alexandra Deabler 171b625f-efe3-566d-b623-5cdf72955338

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

Trump Legal Team to Add Starr and Dershowitz for Senate Trial

Westlake Legal Group 17dc-legal2-facebookJumbo-v2 Trump Legal Team to Add Starr and Dershowitz for Senate Trial Starr, Kenneth W Sekulow, Jay Alan Dershowitz, Alan M Cipollone, Pat A

WASHINGTON — President Trump plans on adding former independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr and the defense lawyer Alan Dershowitz to his legal team for his trial by the Senate, a person briefed on the plan said Friday.

Mr. Starr, whose investigation into President Bill Clinton’s sexual relationships led to his impeachment, will be joined by Robert Ray, who succeeded Mr. Starr as independent counsel and wrote the final report on Mr. Clinton, the person said.

Rounding out the team will be Mr. Dershowitz, a Harvard Law School professor emeritus who became famous as a defense counsel for high-profile defendants like O.J. Simpson.

The White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, and Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, Jay Sekulow, will lead the legal team.

“Professor Dershowitz will present oral arguments at the Senate trial to address the constitutional arguments against impeachment and removal,” the team said in a statement.

“While Professor Dershowitz is nonpartisan when it comes to the constitution — he opposed the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and voted for Hillary Clinton — he believes the issues at stake go to the heart of our enduring Constitution. He is participating in this impeachment trial to defend the integrity of the Constitution and to prevent the creation of a dangerous constitutional precedent.”

More recently, Mr. Dershowitz has faced questions about his representation of Jeffrey Epstein, a financier and convicted sex offender who committed suicide in a New York City jail in August.

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Ken Starr, Dershowitz join Trump’s impeachment defense team

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6124163501001_6124162859001-vs Ken Starr, Dershowitz join Trump’s impeachment defense team John Roberts fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 810b02a1-aa0c-56ae-bbef-71028da92d74

Ken Starr, the former independent counsel who led the Whitewater investigation into then-President Bill Clinton, and attorney Alan Dershowitz will join President Trump’s impeachment defense team, Fox News has learned.

The prominent lawyers were among several attorneys added to the team as the president’s impeachment trial gets underway.

The team will also include Pam Bondi, the former Florida attorney general.

Fox News reported earlier this week that White House Counsel Pat Cipollone will take the lead on the president’s defense team in the Senate trial, along with Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow. Cipollone deputies Michael Purpura and Patrick Philbin will also work on the team.

Dershowitz confirmed his role in a series of tweets on Friday, saying, he would “present oral arguments at the Senate trial to address the constitutional arguments against impeachment and removal.”

“While Professor Dershowitz is non partisan when it comes to the constitution — he opposed the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and voted for Hillary Clinton — he believes the issues at stake go to the heart of our enduring Constitution,” he said in another tweet.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6124163501001_6124162859001-vs Ken Starr, Dershowitz join Trump’s impeachment defense team John Roberts fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 810b02a1-aa0c-56ae-bbef-71028da92d74   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6124163501001_6124162859001-vs Ken Starr, Dershowitz join Trump’s impeachment defense team John Roberts fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox news fnc/politics fnc article Adam Shaw 810b02a1-aa0c-56ae-bbef-71028da92d74

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Judge Jeanine: Dems are about as solemn on impeachment as 2nd graders ‘passing gas’

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-17-at-10.02.54-AM Judge Jeanine: Dems are about as solemn on impeachment as 2nd graders 'passing gas' Joshua Nelson fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 237a0c27-9acc-57b9-a1ad-2472ed12b6fa

Fox News host Judge Jeanine Pirro called out House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and top Democrats, expressing doubt about their claims that the impeachment of President Trump has been a solemn and “prayerful” process.

“The best part about all this is that they try to make it all solemn,” Pirro told “Fox & Friends” on Friday. “They are about as serious as a bunch of second graders passing gas at school,” Pirro said.

TRUMP’S IMPEACHMENT TRIAL OPENS AS LAWMAKERS CONTINUE TO BATTLE OVER POTENTIAL WITNESSES

“They’re high-fiving each other, they’re handing out pens, they’ve got it on a silver platter. Give me a break,” Pirro said, mocking Pelosi for using commemorative pens with her name inscribed on them to sign a resolution to transmit two articles of impeachment against Trump to the Senate for trial.

Pirro went on to mock Pelosi’s decision to withhold articles of impeachment in an attempt to gain leverage in setting terms for the Senate trial. Democrats have called for additional witness testimony, potentially from former National Security Adviser John Bolton and from Lev Parnas, an indicted associate of Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

“We’re gonna tell you how to run this? You got to call witnesses. No kidding. You didn’t call witnesses in the House, now you’re going to tell us how to run a trial?” Pirro asked.

The impeachment trial of Trump began in the Senate on Thursday as Chief Justice John Roberts and 99 of the 100 senators who will serve as jurors were sworn in.

Lawmakers are continuing to battle over whether new witnesses and evidence will be allowed at the Senate trial. Those issues aren’t expected to be decided until well after the trial begins in earnest. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the trial will continue at 1 p.m. EST Tuesday.

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Pirro accused Democrats of trying to “upend” American jurisprudence.

“You can’t keep adding counts once you’ve indicted someone,” Pirro said, noting it as “fundamental and basic.” “And this is nonsense … they make it up as they go along. They believe their own nonsense.”

Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-17-at-10.02.54-AM Judge Jeanine: Dems are about as solemn on impeachment as 2nd graders 'passing gas' Joshua Nelson fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 237a0c27-9acc-57b9-a1ad-2472ed12b6fa   Westlake Legal Group Screen-Shot-2020-01-17-at-10.02.54-AM Judge Jeanine: Dems are about as solemn on impeachment as 2nd graders 'passing gas' Joshua Nelson fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox news fnc/media fnc article 237a0c27-9acc-57b9-a1ad-2472ed12b6fa

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Iran’s Ayatollah Slams ‘American Clowns’ In Rare Friday Prayers Sermon

Westlake Legal Group ayatollah-iran-speech_wide-e122adafe9b107b7af33c156e1ac77da052570d7-s1100-c15 Iran's Ayatollah Slams 'American Clowns' In Rare Friday Prayers Sermon

“There were bitter and sweet events for the Iranian nation” in the past two weeks, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said during a Friday prayers sermon in Tehran. Official Khamenei website via Reuters hide caption

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Official Khamenei website via Reuters

Westlake Legal Group  Iran's Ayatollah Slams 'American Clowns' In Rare Friday Prayers Sermon

“There were bitter and sweet events for the Iranian nation” in the past two weeks, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said during a Friday prayers sermon in Tehran.

Official Khamenei website via Reuters

Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, led Friday prayers in Tehran for the first time in eight years and delivered a sermon in which he excoriated U.S. leaders as “clowns” and accused European countries of negotiating in bad faith over the foundering nuclear deal.

Khamenei also indicated that Iran might retaliate further for the U.S. drone strike that killed top Iranian commander Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, saying a missile attack on U.S. assets in Iraq had been a blow to America’s dignity and its status as a superpower.

The address comes at a delicate time for the ayatollah. Iran’s leaders are locked in a contentious dispute with the U.S., and they’re facing public criticism at home after admitting that Iran accidentally shot down a Ukrainian passenger jet, killing 176 people, most of whom were Iranian.

“The past two weeks were eventful and exceptional weeks,” Khamenei said, according to a partial transcript on his website. Speaking to a large crowd of worshippers in Tehran, he added, “There were bitter and sweet events for the Iranian nation to take lessons from during these two weeks.”

Taking aim at recent statements by President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in which they pledged their support for Iran’s regular citizens, Khamenei said, “These American clowns lie in utter viciousness that they stand with the Iranian people.”

Khamenei added, “They lie. If you are standing by the Iranian [people], it is only to stab them in the heart with your venomous daggers.”

Despite the ayatollah’s colorful language, as NPR’s Jane Arraf reports, his overall speech was “perhaps a little bit less fiery than many would have expected.” While the Iranian leader did criticize the U.S. and its allies, she adds, “He did not make specific threats.”

The address comes nearly two weeks after Khamenei openly wept during funeral prayers for Soleimani. The targeted killing galvanized public outrage against the U.S. in Iran and led to Tehran retaliating for that strike – but sentiments in Iran then took another turn, after its military initially denied and then admitted to shooting down a civilian airliner. Angry public protests followed, including reports of live ammunition being used against demonstrators. It was against that backdrop that the plan for today’s speech was announced.

In his Friday sermon, the ayatollah also addressed a recent maneuver that could reinstate U.N. sanctions on Iran: the complaint that foreign ministers of the U.K., France and Germany filed on Tuesday. By formally accusing Iran of not meeting its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, that complaint triggers a dispute resolution process – and if that fails, U.N. sanctions on Iran, including an arms embargo, will likely return.

“The threat of the French and German governments and the vicious British government to send Iran’s case to the Security Council proved once again that they are the footmen of the US,” Khamenei said.

After the three U.S. allies filed the complaint, Germany’s defense minister said the Trump administration had threatened to punish them if they did not take the action, confirming a Washington Post report of a U.S. plan to impose 25% tariffs on European cars if its allies didn’t act.

“This expression or threat, as you will, does exist,” Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer said in response to a question about that report, according to Deutsche Welle.

When they filed that complaint, the diplomats sought to distance themselves from the Trump administration’s Iran strategy, issuing a statement saying, “Our three countries are not joining a campaign to implement maximum pressure against Iran.”

Russia and China, the two other signatories to the nuclear deal, did not join the French, British and German complaint.

Khamenei accused the European countries of having a deep history of acting in bad faith in the Middle East, and against Iran in particular.

“These three countries are the ones who helped Saddam as much as they could in his war against us,” he said, referring to the Iraq-Iran war of the 1980s.

“The German [government] provided Saddam with chemical weapons to target our cities and frontlines, and its effects are still with us. The French [government] provided Saddam with Super Étendards [helicopters] to attack our oil ships. The British [government] served Saddam in every way too. This is how they are.”

Accusing the Western governments of being deceitful, Khamenei told his audience at Friday prayers, “The same people who appear at the negotiating table — the same so-called ‘gentlemen’ behind the table — are the same terrorists of the Baghdad airport. They just change clothes.”

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Former Iraqi refugee trying to unseat Ilhan Omar: She is doing ‘irreparable harm’ to the country

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is doing “irreparable” damage to the United States, according to Dalia Al-Aqidi, an Iraqi refugee who is running as a Republican to unseat Omar in November.

Appearing on “Fox & Friends” Friday with hosts Pete Hegseth and Ainsley Earhardt, Al-Aqidi said her opponent was harming Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District with hateful rhetoric.

IRAQI REFUGEE LAUNCHES GOP CHALLENGE TO ILHAN OMAR: ‘SHE NEEDS TO BE STOPPED’

“As an American citizen, my duty is to defend my country and my duty is to stand up to her hatred and racism that she’s spreading within her community, within the country, and even worldwide,” Al-Aqidi said. “Ilhan Omar is harming every American with her hatred, her standing against what we believe in, [and] against our own Constitution.”

A former White House correspondent, Al-Aqidi told the “Fox & Friends” anchors that America “is her dream.”

“I came to the U.S. more than 25 years ago. So, basically, I’m not a refugee anymore. I’m not an Iraqi anymore. I’m an American. Period.”

“America, for me, is my country. America opened the doors for me,” she stated.

According to the New York Post, Al-Aqidi and her family fled Iraq to escape Saddam Hussein’s terrorist regime when she was in her 20s and they became U.S. citizens in the early 1990s. Omar fled war-torn Somalia with her family at the age of 9.

Westlake Legal Group dalia4 Former Iraqi refugee trying to unseat Ilhan Omar: She is doing 'irreparable harm' to the country Julia Musto fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/minnesota fox-news/us/terror fox-news/us/constitution fox-news/us/congress fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/person/ilhan-omar fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 98b34d55-83cf-51d5-85e4-8a22c06e0b53

Dalia Al-Aqidi is looking to challenge Rep. Ilhan Omar.

“I believe in building bridges,” Al-Aqidi stated. “We are not enemies. We are all American and we can fight together and we can discuss issues together.”

“She doesn’t care about her district. She’s done nothing for her district. All she’s done is to harm her district [and] harm her followers,” she said.

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Al-Aqidi joins several Republican challengers in the fight for the state, including businessman Lacy Johnson, special education professional Danielle Stella, minister and missionary Lucia Vogel, activist Alley Waterbury, and former auto sales manager Brent Whaley.

That said, Omar won her district by a landslide in 2018.

“So many now, they are looking for someone else,” Al-Aqidi noted. “And I’m here to say, ‘Do you know what? We are Americans, we’re not divided. We all love our country and let’s not take your hate [for President] Trump against America. We are all Americans and we can stand together, defend our country.'”

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group DALIA Former Iraqi refugee trying to unseat Ilhan Omar: She is doing 'irreparable harm' to the country Julia Musto fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/minnesota fox-news/us/terror fox-news/us/constitution fox-news/us/congress fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/person/ilhan-omar fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 98b34d55-83cf-51d5-85e4-8a22c06e0b53   Westlake Legal Group DALIA Former Iraqi refugee trying to unseat Ilhan Omar: She is doing 'irreparable harm' to the country Julia Musto fox-news/world/terrorism fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/minnesota fox-news/us/terror fox-news/us/constitution fox-news/us/congress fox-news/shows/fox-friends fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/person/ilhan-omar fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 98b34d55-83cf-51d5-85e4-8a22c06e0b53

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Trump Taps Lawyer Dershowitz, Others For Impeachment Trial Defense

Westlake Legal Group 5e21cfba2200003100472f90 Trump Taps Lawyer Dershowitz, Others For Impeachment Trial Defense

WASHINGTON, Jan 17 (Reuters) – Former independent counsel Ken Starr, who paved the way for the impeachment of Democratic President Bill Clinton in 1998, and prominent lawyer Alan Dershowitz will join President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial defense team, Trump’s legal team and a source said on Friday.

The team will be led by White House counsel Pat Cipollone and Trump private attorney Jay Sekulow. Trump adviser Pam Bondi and former independent counsel Robert Ray will also be on the team, according to the source who is familiar with the team’s composition.

The House voted to impeach Clinton after Starr investigated his sexual affair with a White House intern. The Senate acquitted Clinton.

Dershowitz has been a well-known figure in U.S. legal circles for decades. He is a Harvard Law School professor and was part of the so-called “Dream Team” of lawyers who won a 1995 acquittal of former National Football League star and actor O.J. Simpson on charges of murdering his wife and a friend of hers.

Trump’s legal team issued a statement saying Dershowitz will present oral arguments at the trial to address the constitutional arguments against impeachment and removal from office.

“While Professor Dershowitz is non partisan when it comes to the constitution – he opposed the impeachment of President Bill Clinton and voted for Hillary Clinton – he believes the issues at stake go to the heart of our enduring Constitution,” the Trump legal team said. “He is participating in this impeachment trial to defend the integrity of the Constitution and to prevent the creation of a dangerous constitutional precedent.”

(Reporting by Susan Heavey, Karen Freifeld and Tim Ahmann; Writing by Will Dunham; Editing by Alistair Bell)

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