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Westlake Legal Group > News Media (Page 87)

Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched

Minshew Mania is alive again in Jacksonville a bit earlier than expected following the benching of quarterback Nick Foles in Sunday’s game between the Jaguars and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

With Jaguars fans shouting “we want Minshew” and the team trailing the Buccaneers by 25 points at halftime, the coaching staff decided to make a change and bring back Gardner Minshew, the rookie quarterback who took the league by storm earlier in the season with his exciting play and signature mustache.

Westlake Legal Group Minshew Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched fox-news/sports/nfl/jacksonville-jaguars fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/nick-foles fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro d8d07c0b-6129-56a7-b60a-68fbf9839f6b article

A Jacksonville Jaguars fan holding a sign about Gardner Minshew during the first quarter of a game at TIAA Bank Field on Dec. 1. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)

Since Foles returned from a broken collarbone injury two weeks ago, he has struggled behind Jacksonville’s offensive line. On Sunday, he completed just six passes for 82 yards.

NICK FOLES WILL START FOR JAGUARS OVER MINSHEW AFTER BYE WEEK

He was also sacked three times and committed three first-half turnovers for a 34.8 passer rating.

Westlake Legal Group Foles Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched fox-news/sports/nfl/jacksonville-jaguars fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/nick-foles fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro d8d07c0b-6129-56a7-b60a-68fbf9839f6b article

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Nick Foles (7) looks for a receiver against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)

Jacksonville has yet to win a game with the former Super Bowl-winning quarterback, which could be attributed to his lack of movement in the pocket behind a below-average offensive line, young linebackers, the team’s failure to get a consistent running game and the lack of chemistry he’s had with the wide receivers due to his injury.

The Jaguars have also been plagued with the injury bug and its defense isn’t the same this year after losing players like LB Telvin Smith, DT Malik Jackson, CB Jalen Ramsey and FS Tashaun Gipson for various reasons.

Foles signed with the Jaguars this past March to a four-year, $88 million contract with just over $50 million guaranteed before suffering the broken clavicle during the team’s first game of the season against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Minshew came off the bench that game and took the NFL by storm, creating a phenomenon the city hadn’t seen in a long time. He started eight games this season, completing 61.2 percent of his passes for 2,285 yards — while throwing 13 touchdowns and just four interceptions.

TERRELLE PRYOR, WOMAN FACE CHARGES AFTER ALTERCATION THAT LEFT NFL PLAYER STABBED

Westlake Legal Group Gardner-Minshew-and-Nick-Foles Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched fox-news/sports/nfl/jacksonville-jaguars fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/nick-foles fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro d8d07c0b-6129-56a7-b60a-68fbf9839f6b article

Gardner Minshew #15 of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Nick Foles #7 warm up before the start of a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)

On Nov. 3 in London, Minshew had essentially a one-game audition to keep his job, with Foles returning from injury. But the rookie had arguably his worst game of the season, turning the ball over four times in the Jaguars 26-3 loss.

In the second half on Sunday, he showed a bit of that magic the team has been missing over the past few weeks.

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With Minshew back for the Jags and the team likely to miss the playoffs, it’s now up to the coaching staff to determine if they stick with the rookie or go back to the Super Bowl-winning QB.

Westlake Legal Group Gardner-Minshew-and-Nick-Foles Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched fox-news/sports/nfl/jacksonville-jaguars fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/nick-foles fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro d8d07c0b-6129-56a7-b60a-68fbf9839f6b article   Westlake Legal Group Gardner-Minshew-and-Nick-Foles Minshew Mania back in Jacksonville after Nick Foles is benched fox-news/sports/nfl/jacksonville-jaguars fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/nick-foles fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro d8d07c0b-6129-56a7-b60a-68fbf9839f6b article

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Kansas county to pay $37.5G to Wichita officer bitten by deputy’s dog

A Kansas county says it will pay $37,500 to a Wichita cop bitten in the groin by a sheriff’s office K-9 whose handler once sued after being bitten by a Wichita police dog, according to a report.

Wichita Officer Nathan Toman sought monetary damages without filing a lawsuit after a dog belonging to the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office bit him in the “right testicle, right inner thigh and right wrist” two years ago, the Wichita Eagle reported Friday.

The dog’s handler, Deputy Sarah Sinnett, had successfully sued the city of Wichita for $67,000 after a Wichita police dog bit her in 2014, according to the paper.

NEW YORK POLICE K-9 TAKES DOWN SUSPECT AFTER HE PUNCHED COP IN THE FACE

Toman was bitten as he was responding to a burglary call at an abandoned house, the paper reported.

Westlake Legal Group Deputy-Sarah-Sinnett Kansas county to pay $37.5G to Wichita officer bitten by deputy's dog Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/kansas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox news fnc/us fnc article 889d8904-cc44-50fc-bf57-93fd6020d59a

The Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office posted this photo of Deputy Sarah Sinnett and her new police dog Nimitz on Facebook in 2014.  (Sedgewick County Sheriff’s Office)

The paper said the Sedgwick County Commission approved the settlement earlier this month. Toman had initially sought $221,000.

Kate Flavin, a Sedgwick County public information officer, told the paper that Toman was bitten when he crossed in front of Sinnett’s K-9.

LAS VEGAS POLICE K-9 STABBED REPEATEDLY BY SUSPECT ‘DOING EXTREMELY WELL’ IN RECOVERY

“Deputies immediately called off the K-9,” Flavin said, “which responded to commands, but the whole sequence took place in a matter of seconds.”

Sinnett had sued in connection with an incident in which officers tried to remove a man sitting in a vehicle with a machete.

According to court records, a Wichita officer left his door open, allowing his Belgian Malinois to “self-deploy” after seeing his handler in a struggle with the suspect, the paper reported. Sinnett was bitten on the left thigh.

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Her lawsuit accused the Wichita Police Department of failing to adequately train K-9 officers and ensure the dog was properly certified.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Deputy-Sarah-Sinnett Kansas county to pay $37.5G to Wichita officer bitten by deputy's dog Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/kansas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox news fnc/us fnc article 889d8904-cc44-50fc-bf57-93fd6020d59a   Westlake Legal Group Deputy-Sarah-Sinnett Kansas county to pay $37.5G to Wichita officer bitten by deputy's dog Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/midwest/kansas fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox news fnc/us fnc article 889d8904-cc44-50fc-bf57-93fd6020d59a

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Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade

The U.S. Supreme Court, in its first gun rights case in nearly a decade, will hear arguments Monday from Second Amendment advocates challenging a New York City law that restricts licensed holders to a handful of shooting ranges within the city.

Gun rights groups are hoping the high court will extend its landmark rulings from 2008 and 2010 that enshrined the right to have a gun for self-defense at home.

The National Rifle Association (NRA) and its allies have for years tried to get the court to say more about gun rights.

Westlake Legal Group 7a2abc95-AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article

The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments on a gun rights case for the first time in nearly a decade.  (AP)

The lawsuit in New York began as a challenge to the city’s prohibition on carrying a licensed, locked and unloaded handgun outside the city limits, either to a shooting range or a second home.

Lower courts upheld the regulation, but the Supreme Court’s decision in January to step into the case signaled a revived interest in gun rights from a court with two new Trump-appointed justices: Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

Gun control advocates at both the city and state levels scrambled to find a way to remove the case from the justices’ grasp. Not only did the city change its regulation to allow licensed gun owners to transport their weapons to locations outside New York’s five boroughs, but the state enacted a law barring cities from imposing the challenged restrictions.

AFTER FLORIDA COUNTY BECOMES ‘2ND AMENDMENT SANCTUARY,’ OTHERS IN STATE WANT TO FOLLOW SUIT

“There is no case or controversy because New York City has repealed the ordinance and the New York State Legislature has acted to make sure it remains repealed,” said Jonathan Lowy, chief counsel and vice president of the gun control group Brady’s Legal Alliance.

But those moves failed to get the Supreme Court to dismiss the case.

Paul Clement, who represents three New York residents and New York’s NRA affiliate challenging the transportation ban, said New York City “still views firearm ownership as a privilege and not a fundamental right, and is still in the business of limiting transport and denying licenses for a host of discretionary reasons.”

The city had contended that what it calls its “former rule” did not violate the Constitution. But that is unlikely to persuade the court’s conservative majority.

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A decision is expected by late June.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article   Westlake Legal Group AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article

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

Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade

The U.S. Supreme Court, in its first gun rights case in nearly a decade, will hear arguments Monday from Second Amendment advocates challenging a New York City law that restricts licensed holders to a handful of shooting ranges within the city.

Gun rights groups are hoping the high court will extend its landmark rulings from 2008 and 2010 that enshrined the right to have a gun for self-defense at home.

The National Rifle Association (NRA) and its allies have for years tried to get the court to say more about gun rights.

Westlake Legal Group 7a2abc95-AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article

The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments on a gun rights case for the first time in nearly a decade.  (AP)

The lawsuit in New York began as a challenge to the city’s prohibition on carrying a licensed, locked and unloaded handgun outside the city limits, either to a shooting range or a second home.

Lower courts upheld the regulation, but the Supreme Court’s decision in January to step into the case signaled a revived interest in gun rights from a court with two new Trump-appointed justices: Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

Gun control advocates at both the city and state levels scrambled to find a way to remove the case from the justices’ grasp. Not only did the city change its regulation to allow licensed gun owners to transport their weapons to locations outside New York’s five boroughs, but the state enacted a law barring cities from imposing the challenged restrictions.

AFTER FLORIDA COUNTY BECOMES ‘2ND AMENDMENT SANCTUARY,’ OTHERS IN STATE WANT TO FOLLOW SUIT

“There is no case or controversy because New York City has repealed the ordinance and the New York State Legislature has acted to make sure it remains repealed,” said Jonathan Lowy, chief counsel and vice president of the gun control group Brady’s Legal Alliance.

But those moves failed to get the Supreme Court to dismiss the case.

Paul Clement, who represents three New York residents and New York’s NRA affiliate challenging the transportation ban, said New York City “still views firearm ownership as a privilege and not a fundamental right, and is still in the business of limiting transport and denying licenses for a host of discretionary reasons.”

The city had contended that what it calls its “former rule” did not violate the Constitution. But that is unlikely to persuade the court’s conservative majority.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

A decision is expected by late June.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article   Westlake Legal Group AP19333570215969 Supreme Court to take up first gun rights case in nearly a decade fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/second-amendment fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/new-york-city fox-news/politics/judiciary/supreme-court fox news fnc/us fnc c1ad5828-00e2-56e0-9607-8b2f2e97db6f Bradford Betz article

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New ‘Cosmic Crisp’ apple variety lasts ‘for more than a year,’ farmers say

An apple a day… a year in the fridge, they may stay.

A new type of apple was launched Sunday that took more than two decades to develop and reportedly could keep for more than a year in storage, according to farmers.

The Cosmic Crisp — a super-sweet fruit named for the bright yellowish dots on its skin that look like cosmic stars — is expected to hit grocery stores in the U.S. this week. It was developed by Washington State University’s (WSU) fruit tree breeding program.

CHICK-FIL-A CUSTOMER DESPERATELY TRIES TO ESCAPE HIGH CHAIR AFTER SITTING IN IT ON A DARE

Westlake Legal Group Cosmic-Crisp-apples New 'Cosmic Crisp' apple variety lasts 'for more than a year,' farmers say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us fox-news/food-drink/food fox news fnc/food-drink fnc David Aaro article 8e581190-9b91-5366-88a2-4c8c1f194069

Cosmic Crisp apples, a new variety and the first-ever bred in Washington state, are ready to be picked. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

“After decades of cross-pollinating, tasting and testing, along with research and development with Washington State University’s world-class tree fruit breeding program, the Cosmic Crisp® apple was discovered,” according to the Cosmic Crisp website. “WSU researchers, including pome fruit breeder Kate Evans, have invented a new variety that will change the face of the industry and win enthusiasm among consumers with a combination of taste, texture and usability.”

Evans says it was created with the idea of crossing two varieties of apples that have their own unique traits and might be paired well together. The process is called “cross-hybridization,” which she told The Guardian is not the same as genetic modification.

The apples are a cross between the Enterprise and Honeycrisp apples, which she says gives them a higher shelf life, while still holding their naturally sweet flavor. Enterprise apples have a natural resistance to browning and disease, and the Honeycrisp is known for being sweet.

MCDONALDS EMPLOYEE TURNS 92, SAYS HE HAS NO PLANS TO RETIRE

The apple’s launch has reportedly cost $10 million, and 450,000 40-pound boxes were expected to be shipped to retailers on Sunday, according to The Spokesman-Review.

The 600,000 Cosmic Crisp trees were sold to farmers in 2017 and 10 million new trees have been planted since, according to The Guardian. The trees take three years to produce a crop.

“It creates an interest in the apples and I think that will benefit all varieties and the apple growers as a whole,” Scott McIlrath, who planted 5,000 Cosmic Crisp trees, told KIMA.

He said the economic effect the new apple might have on other farmers won’t be felt for a couple of years.

Farmers in Washington — the largest state supplier of apples in the U.S. — are allowed to exclusively grow the fruit for the next decade.

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Apples are the second-highest selling fruit in the U.S. following bananas.

Westlake Legal Group Cosmic-Crisp-apples New 'Cosmic Crisp' apple variety lasts 'for more than a year,' farmers say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us fox-news/food-drink/food fox news fnc/food-drink fnc David Aaro article 8e581190-9b91-5366-88a2-4c8c1f194069   Westlake Legal Group Cosmic-Crisp-apples New 'Cosmic Crisp' apple variety lasts 'for more than a year,' farmers say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us fox-news/food-drink/food fox news fnc/food-drink fnc David Aaro article 8e581190-9b91-5366-88a2-4c8c1f194069

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Eric Shawn: Why I will not give up looking for Jimmy Hoffa

On Sunday, Dec. 1 at 10 p.m. EST on the Fox News Channel, the result of almost two decades investigating the greatest mystery in American history will be distilled into one hour (minus commercials). The program, “Fox Nation Presents: The Real Search for James R. Hoffa,” documents my long quest to try to uncover the answers to Hoffa’s murder when he disappeared in Detroit on July 30, 1975.

When I first called sources — including government officials — in the course of my reporting and told them that I am calling about “Jimmy Hoffa,” I was invariably met by the same reaction. A laugh. An incredulous “what?!” followed by the mandatory chuckle. Or this: “really?” “seriously?” “you are?” 

These days, Jimmy Hoffa is not so much remembered for his trailblazing dedication to American labor and his achievements at the bargaining table that raised millions of working-class families to a higher standard of living as he is for his disappearance. And we have all heard the jokes. He is buried under the end zone of the old Giants stadium or in the concrete of a highway somewhere. But heartless humor so ignores the cruel and unforgiving fate that befell a giant, who was also a loving husband and father.

ERIC SHAWN: MOBSTER’S SON SAYS HE KNOWS WHERE JIMMY HOFFA IS BURIED (AND WHO KILLED HIM)

It is long past time that Hoffa’s family — his daughter Barbara Crancer, a retired judge in St. Louis, who is now 81 and his son, James P. Hoffa, who currently sits behind his father’s old desk as president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters — learn what really happened to their father. Millions of proud Teamsters and the nation also deserve to know the truth.

The fact that the Hoffa murder remains unsolved represents a haunting challenge. The full power of the federal government was thrown into finding the answers, only to come up short, at least as far as we publicly know. That is why I am calling on the government to fully release the FBI Hoffa files that are still secret. The tens of thousands of pages that have been released remain heavily redacted, protecting suspects and sources from nearly 30 years ago, who no longer need that legal protection.

In 1989, Hoffa’s daughter filed a lawsuit against the federal government, seeking to pry open the files.

“I want to find the truth,” Barbara said. U.S. District Court Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh, who happens to be Rush Limbaugh’s uncle, held the government’s feet to the fire, but in the end, Barbara’s plea was denied.

Today only two major Hoffa suspects remain alive, Charles “Chuckie” O’Brien and Stephen Andretta.

O’Brien’s step-son, Jack Goldsmith, has written an impassioned book, “In Hoffa’s Shadow, A Stepfather, a Disappearance in Detroit, and My Search for the Truth,”  that lays out the case that Chuckie was falsely suspected of participating in the crime. Goldsmith says that the FBI has determined that his step-father was not involved after all. The bureau’s Detroit office will not comment on that.

And Goldsmith is far more than a loving and dedicated step-son to Chuckie. He is the Henry L. Shattuck Professor of Law at Harvard University, who served as one of the nation’s top law-enforcement officials, as the assistant U.S. attorney general in the George W. Bush administration, head of the Office of Legal Counsel. He provided legal guidance to the president, attorney general and all of the federal executive agencies. The actions of the FBI fell under his purview.

The other suspect, Andretta, is keeping his own counsel and has declined my repeated requests to talk. This leaves us with the files.

The Department of Justice documents that I have seen state that New Jersey Genovese family mobster Salvatore “Sally Bugs” Briguglio shot Hoffa. Our most recent reporting on Fox Nation and Fox News revealed new claims that “Sally Bugs” was the shooter. The FBI could not make a case against him because justice came Mafia-style when “Sally Bugs” was gunned down on Mulberry Street in Manhattan’s Little Italy in 1978, three years after Hoffa disappeared. It was believed that he was about to turn state’s evidence and testify against the suspected architect of the Hoffa killing, his boss and notorious Genovese crime family New Jersey Capo Anthony “Tony Pro” Provenzano.

Phillip Moscato Jr., the son of one of the Hoffa suspects, said his father not only told him that “Sally Bugs,” his childhood friend and fellow mobster, shot Hoffa but also where Hoffa’s remains were buried in northern New Jersey. A second independent revelation came from Frank Cappola, the son of the co-owner of the Jersey City dump where the FBI was told Hoffa’s body was taken. Cappola corroborates Moscato’s information that Hoffa was transported to New Jersey after he was killed in Detroit. Cappola also says that he knows where Hoffa was buried because he told us that it was his father Paul who buried him.

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“My father said ‘this man should go back home. He needs to go back home. He was a good man.’ My father respected him,” Frank said. “It needs to be finished.”

“A big, big, big part of this is the Hoffa family,” said Phil. “I can only imagine having that and never knowing. I’m hoping to try and give them a little closure.”

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I interviewed both men as part of our Fox Nation investigation along with the most respected Hoffa expert in the nation, Washington, D.C. investigative journalist Dan Moldea. Moldea agrees that it is past time for the government files to be released.

Westlake Legal Group 62013_hoffa-1 Eric Shawn: Why I will not give up looking for Jimmy Hoffa fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/opinion fnc Eric Shawn article 6e8cab21-c9d5-51d2-a420-356c27d997f0

FILE – In this Aug. 21, 1969 file photo, Teamsters Union leader James Hoffa is shown in Chattanooga, Tenn. The FBI has seen enough merit in a reputed Mafia captain’s tip to once again break out the digging equipment to search for the remains of Hoffa, last seen alive before a lunch meeting with two mobsters nearly 40 years ago. Tony Zerilli told his lawyer that Hoffa was buried beneath a concrete slab in a barn in a field in suburban Detroit in 1975. (AP Photo/File)

In 1991, Henry J. Fredericks, an assistant U.S. attorney in St. Louis, said that “the files will lead to an ultimate conclusion.”  That has yet to happen. The American public is still not allowed to read all of the still censored documents. The conclusion that Fredericks predicted will only be revealed when we are allowed to read everything. Former U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey, former federal prosecutors and Hoffa case investigators agree that the information should be made public.

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“You never give up when your father is murdered,” James P. Hoffa once said. “You never stop trying to find the answers.”

We should not either.

Programming Alert: On Sunday, Dec. 1 at 10 p.m. EST Fox News will air “Fox Nation Presents: The Real Search for James R. Hoffa.” And to watch all of Shawn’s Fox Nation docuseries “Riddle: The Search for James R. Hoffa,” go to Fox Nation and sign up today.

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Fox Nation programs are viewable on-demand and from your mobile device app, but only for Fox Nation subscribers. Go to Fox Nation today to start a free trial and watch the extensive library from Tomi Lahren, Pete Hegseth, Abby Hornacek, Laura Ingraham, Ainsley Earhardt, Greg Gutfeld, Judge Andrew Napolitano and many more of your favorite Fox News personalities.

Westlake Legal Group eric_shawn Eric Shawn: Why I will not give up looking for Jimmy Hoffa fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/opinion fnc Eric Shawn article 6e8cab21-c9d5-51d2-a420-356c27d997f0   Westlake Legal Group eric_shawn Eric Shawn: Why I will not give up looking for Jimmy Hoffa fox-news/topic/fox-nation-opinion fox-news/opinion fox-news/fox-nation fox news fnc/opinion fnc Eric Shawn article 6e8cab21-c9d5-51d2-a420-356c27d997f0

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Trump’s Other Personal Lawyer: Close to the Right, but Far From Giuliani

WASHINGTON — Jay Sekulow is a real lawyer, and he plays one on TV.

Mr. Sekulow, the coordinator of President Trump’s personal legal team, does not have an office in the White House. He is best known as a prodigious fund-raiser on evangelical television and a litigator for the Christian right, not for handling criminal prosecutions or executive power disputes. In 2016, Mr. Sekulow said he voted for Hillary Clinton, according to people close to him.

Yet with the House Judiciary Committee set to begin impeachment hearings on Wednesday and Mr. Trump enmeshed in legal battles on other fronts — like his tax returns, claims of immunity from prosecution and elements of his immigration and health care policies — Mr. Sekulow has emerged as one of Mr. Trump’s most trusted advisers and loyal defenders in the news media.

Operating under the name Constitutional Litigation & Advocacy Group from a co-working space in a Pennsylvania Avenue office building, Mr. Sekulow, 63, coordinates the efforts of eight outside lawyers enlisted to help Mr. Trump. He is in regular touch with the White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, and speaks frequently with the president.

A long list of lawyers have cycled tumultuously in and out of Mr. Trump’s orbit over the past three years: Donald F. McGahn II, his first White House counsel; Ty Cobb and John M. Dowd, who represented him in the early stages of the special counsel’s investigation; and Emmet T. Flood, who saw Mr. Trump through the completion of the Mueller report. Then there is Rudolph W. Giuliani, like Mr. Sekulow a personal lawyer for Mr. Trump, whose aggressive digging for political dirt in Ukraine has put him under federal investigation and led to the president facing a House impeachment inquiry.

But Mr. Sekulow has hung on.

He was recommended by the erstwhile Trump adviser Stephen K. Bannon to help guide Mr. Trump’s legal response to the investigation by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III. Like Mr. Giuliani, he has New York roots and spent decades as a pugilistic advocate on television, in Mr. Sekulow’s case in a natty on-air uniform of bespoke suit and three-corner silk pocket square.

Unlike Mr. Giuliani, he has avoided messy public conflicts that upstage his client, and he reflects the embattled president’s reliance on evangelical Christians, a crucial political constituency. He declined to be interviewed on the record for this article.

“Jay is not a criminal lawyer, and he’s not even a checks-and-balances constitutional lawyer,” said Paul Rosenzweig, who was senior counsel to Ken Starr for the Whitewater investigation during the Clinton administration. “The substantive background he has is not a particularly good fit for any of those tasks. But he’s been at it for two years, so maybe he’s got more experience in defending this president than anybody.”

ImageWestlake Legal Group 00dc-sekulow2-articleLarge Trump’s Other Personal Lawyer: Close to the Right, but Far From Giuliani United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Trump Tax Returns Sekulow, Jay Alan Russian Interference in 2016 US Elections and Ties to Trump Associates Religion-State Relations Religion and Belief Mercer University Jews for Jesus Evangelical Movement Christians and Christianity

Mr. Sekulow, left, in 2003 outside the Supreme Court, where he won a string of religious liberty cases.Credit…Dennis Cook/Associated Press

Mr. Sekulow was born in Brooklyn and grew up an observant Jew, first on Long Island and later in Atlanta, where his father, a clothing buyer, moved the family to take a job at a department store.

Mr. Sekulow attended Atlanta Baptist College, today known as Mercer University. It was around that time, he has said, that he became a Christian, in part because of the influence of a college friend, Glenn Borders, who led him through an exploration of the Bible. He would go on to be active in Jews for Jesus, an organization of evangelical believers of Jewish ancestry.

In a first-person biography on the Jews for Jesus website, he wrote that during his reading of the Old and New Testaments, “my suspicion that Jesus might really be the messiah was confirmed.” At a later gathering, “they invited people who wanted to commit their life to Jesus to come up the aisle to meet with them at the front of the church,” Mr. Sekulow wrote. “I responded to that invitation.”

After graduating from law school at Mercer, Mr. Sekulow worked briefly at the Internal Revenue Service, then opened a law firm in Atlanta with a few Mercer classmates and his brother Gary. Working a network of contacts, including a local pastor, Mr. Sekulow swiftly moved from routine real estate closings and wills to a business renovating and flipping historic properties, at the time a popular tax shelter for the wealthy.

The venture imploded in 1986, a development Mr. Sekulow omits from his Jews for Jesus biography. Mr. Sekulow; his brother Gary; his father, Stanley; his law partner Stuart Roth; and their business associates were sued for fraud and securities violations. They declared bankruptcy, leaving a trail of unpaid debts.

Within a year of his bankruptcy, Mr. Sekulow reinvented himself as a litigator for the Christian right. As general counsel for Jews for Jesus, he argued before the Supreme Court and won a 9-to-0 victory in 1987, successfully making the case that by banning Jews for Jesus from distributing pamphlets at Los Angeles International Airport, the Board of Airport Commissioners violated the group’s First Amendment rights.

Within months Mr. Sekulow founded his own faith-based advocacy group, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism, or CASE, to meet, Mr. Sekulow wrote, “a growing need to challenge the state’s infringement upon the right of Christians to proclaim the gospel” in “parks, school campuses at every level, malls, street corners and, of course, airports.”

Mr. Sekulow won a string of Supreme Court cases in the early and mid-1990s by arguing that bans on various forms of religious expression in public places violated the practitioners’ right to free speech.

His legal successes impressed the televangelists Janice Crouch and Paul Crouch Sr., founders of Trinity Broadcasting Network and icons of what is commonly called prosperity gospel, the belief that following God yields wealth and health. Many mainstream Christians consider the theology heretical.

Mr. Sekulow appeared on the rhinestone-clad couple’s “Praise the Lord” TV show, where they solicited “love gifts” for the young lawyer they called “our little Jew” and “our little David,” battling the Goliath of the secular state.

The Crouches gave Mr. Sekulow his own show, broadcast from a mock courtroom in a TBN studio in Mobile, Ala., and produced by their son, Paul Crouch Jr.

“We got him launched,” the younger Mr. Crouch, who has since left TBN, said in an interview.

Mr. Sekulow still appears on TBN, which carries his show and hawks his books, like “Unholy Alliance,” whose blurb says it “exposes the attempts by fundamentalist Muslims to destroy our legal system and liberties.” Paul Crouch Jr. has also asked Mr. Sekulow to appear in “Trump 2024,” an election-year Christian documentary about Mr. Trump that assumes a second term.

In 1990, the televangelist Pat Robertson, a close friend of the Crouches, hired Mr. Sekulow as chief counsel for the American Center for Law & Justice, a group founded in opposition to the American Civil Liberties Union.

Over three decades, CASE and the A.C.L.J., funded by donations Mr. Sekulow solicits on TV and through telemarketers, have channeled tens of millions of dollars to the Sekulow family and their affiliated businesses, financing homes in Washington, Tennessee and France; private jet travel; and a chauffeur.

Over the years, several news outlets have investigated the groups and their payments to Mr. Sekulow and his wife, sons, brother, sister-in-law, niece and nephew. In 2017, The Guardian, citing documents, published an article saying that between 2000 and 2017 CASE has “steered more than $60 million to Sekulow, his family and their businesses,” including for property, production services and a private jet lease.

The same day, The Washington Post published an investigation of the organizations’ tax records, finding that between 2011 and 2015 the interconnected charities paid $5.5 million in compensation directly to Mr. Sekulow and five family members, another $7.5 million to “businesses owned by Mr. Sekulow and his sister-in-law for producing and consulting on TV, movie and radio shows, including his weekday program, ‘Jay Sekulow Live!,’” and $21 million to a law firm co-owned by Mr. Sekulow: Constitutional Litigation & Advocacy Group.

“CASE and A.C.L.J. comply with all rules and regulations of the Internal Revenue Service,” the law and justice center said in a statement to The New York Times. “We have independent auditors and two independent tax law firms, and we’re in good standing in all 50 states.”

During the Obama administration Mr. Sekulow continued his work at the center, fighting against the Affordable Care Act and defending an Operation Rescue activist sued over “undercover” videos filmed at a Planned Parenthood clinic. During the recession, the group used telemarketers to solicit “sacrificial gifts” from struggling people by phone, according to the Guardian article.

Mr. Robertson said in an interview that if Mr. Sekulow were being “compensated as an attorney for the work that he does, he would be making in the seven-figure range.” Unlike Mr. Giuliani, Mr. Sekulow is paid for representing Mr. Trump; Mr. Sekulow’s son Jordan and Mr. Roth are also on the Trump payroll.

Every weekday Mr. Sekulow takes to the Christian airwaves, amplifying White House talking points and raising money for the A.C.L.J. Last month he and his son worked to impugn the impeachment inquiry’s “alleged whistle-blower,” casting him as part of an Obama administration “chain of deep staters.” As witnesses testified before the House Intelligence Committee, his show promoted its “exclusive live analysis of Adam Schiff’s phony, lacking-due-process” hearings.

After a federal appeals court again rejected Mr. Trump’s efforts to shield his tax returns from New York criminal investigators last month, Mr. Sekulow vowed to take the battle to the Supreme Court, telling CBS News that the president’s claims of legal immunity even from murder “go to the heart of our republic.”

Whether he will argue the case himself before the Supreme Court has not yet been decided.

Charlie Savage contributed reporting.

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Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ deemed most annoying Christmas song by UK poll

Westlake Legal Group Mariah-Carey-AP Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' deemed most annoying Christmas song by UK poll Variety fox-news/special/occasions/holiday fox-news/person/mariah-carey fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fnc/entertainment fnc Chris Willman article 72371814-c193-54c0-b455-945bc38f2fbe

As radio stations everywhere turn to an all-Christmas format, what song would listeners most like to jingle all the way to oblivion? That question remains unsettled in America, but over in the UK, a poll has singled out Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” as the most annoying holiday song ever.

The mobile phone company Huawei conducted the survey. Perhaps Carey’s song topping the poll is not surprising; the 1994 single is ubiquitous enough, worldwide, that it would probably come in near the top of any survey of favorite songs, too. But clearly it is not without its polarizing factors to many Brits who dread the music of December.

The rest of the UK’s most annoying list is decidedly Brit-centric, with the Band-Aid charity song “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” coming in at No. 2. A couple of holiday songs from British rock stars of the 1970s, Wizzard’s “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday” and Slade’s “Merry Xmas Everybody” are in the Nos. 3-4 positions. Do the English even realize how uniquely fortunate they are to have that Wizzard song all over the airwaves every December? Apparently they do not.

CALYPSO SINGER IRVING BURGIE, WRITER OF ‘DAY-O’ AND OTHER HARRY BELAFONTE KITS, DIES AT 95

Wham!’s “Last Christmas,” which surely would top any more scientific poll, lands at No. 5.

One of the greatest Christmas songs of all time, “Fairytale of New York” by the Pogues with Kirsty MacColl, inexplicably comes in at No. 6, although it’s probably difficult to overestimate how many more thousands of times the British have been subjected to this ode to drunken dysfunction than Americans have.

At No. 7, perhaps the least expected choice, from a U.S. point of view, is the Tom Jones and Cerys Matthews version of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” a single that has been inescapable overseas since its 1999 release but has gotten virtually zero airplay, ever, in the States. Given the ongoing controversy in the U.S. about the song itself, it seems safe to say that the recordings that Americans are more familiar with (like Dean Martin’s) would be contenders if a similar survey were conducted here.

The No. 8-10 picks return the poll to territory more familiar to American listeners: the Jackson 5’s “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” Eartha Kitt’s “Santa Baby” and the Andrews Sisters’ “Jingle Bells.”

THE WEEKND DROPS ANOTHER NEW SONG, ‘BLINDING LIGHTS,’ APPEARS ON COLBERT NEXT WEEK

That Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime” was even bigger in the UK than in America yet does not appear anywhere in the top 10 throws the veracity of the poll further into question.

One thing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” has going against it — or for it, depending on your point of view — in this poll is the fact that it’s the last original holiday song to have really become a Christmas standard; nothing in the 21st century can really be said to have joined the popular canon. Perhaps that makes it more vulnerable to boomers who might consider Carey’s song an irritating jingle-come-lately in a pantheon in which practically everything else has been grandfathered in, although there are probably just as many from that generation that cherish it for its debt to the Phil Spector Christmas sound.

There’s more annoyance or delight where that came from. Carey’s 1994 “Merry Christmas” album, from which the megahit derives, has been reissued this fall in a 25th anniversary deluxe edition with a bonus disc that includes remixes, a new recording of “Sugar Plum Fairy” and previously unreleased live tracks from the singer’s ’94 performance at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City.

Curiously, due probably to a number of peculiarities about chart rules at the time, Carey’s song never reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100; the highest it’s ever gotten there is No. 3, a position attained just last year. Carey released a duet version with Justin Bieber in 2011. The song has been covered live or in performance by artists including Kelly Clarkson, My Chemical Romance, Michael Buble, Fifth Harmony, Lady Antebellum, Cee Lo Green, Ariana Grande, Idina Menzel, She & Him, LeAnn Rimes and Ingrid Michaelson.

JUDY COLLINS GETS SUITE ON ‘WINTER STORIES,’ A NOT SO CHRISTMAS-Y SEASONAL ALBUM

Clearly UK music fans are not taking their cues from the Guardian, which this year ran its own subjective list of the most annoying holiday songs of all time and only placed Carey’s at No. 20. They had “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in second place. The newspaper’s No. 1 pick: Bing Crosby and David Bowie’s “Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth.”

The full survey results for Britain’s most annoying Christmas song:

  1. “All I Want for Christmas Is You” – Mariah Carey
  2. “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” – Band Aid
  3. “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday” – Wizzard
  4. “Merry Xmas Everybody” – Slade
  5. “Last Christmas” – Wham!
  6. “Fairytale of New York” – The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl
  7. “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Tom Jones & Cerys Matthews
  8. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” – Jackson 5
  9. “Santa Baby” – Eartha Kitt
  10. “Jingle Bells” – Andrews Sisters
Westlake Legal Group Mariah-Carey-AP Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' deemed most annoying Christmas song by UK poll Variety fox-news/special/occasions/holiday fox-news/person/mariah-carey fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fnc/entertainment fnc Chris Willman article 72371814-c193-54c0-b455-945bc38f2fbe   Westlake Legal Group Mariah-Carey-AP Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' deemed most annoying Christmas song by UK poll Variety fox-news/special/occasions/holiday fox-news/person/mariah-carey fox-news/lifestyle/occasions/christmas fox-news/entertainment/music fox-news/entertainment/celebrity-news fox-news/entertainment fnc/entertainment fnc Chris Willman article 72371814-c193-54c0-b455-945bc38f2fbe

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Trump downsizes U.S. contribution to NATO, helps Russian agenda

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With Brutal Crackdown, Iran Convulsed by Worst Unrest in 40 Years

Westlake Legal Group XXIRAN-PROTESTS-01-facebookJumbo With Brutal Crackdown, Iran Convulsed by Worst Unrest in 40 Years Rouhani, Hassan Khamenei, Ali Iran Embargoes and Sanctions Demonstrations, Protests and Riots

Iran is experiencing its deadliest political unrest since the Islamic Revolution 40 years ago, with at least 180 people killed — and possibly hundreds more — as angry protests have been smothered in a government crackdown of unbridled force.

It began two weeks ago with an abrupt increase of at least 50 percent in gasoline prices. Within 72 hours, outraged demonstrators in cities large and small were calling for an end to the Islamic Republic’s government and the downfall of its leaders.

In many places, security forces responded by opening fire on unarmed protesters, largely unemployed or low-income young men between the ages of 19 and 26, according to witness accounts and videos. In the southwest city of Mahshahr alone, witnesses and medical personnel said, Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps members surrounded, shot and killed 40 to 100 demonstrators — mostly unarmed young men — in a sugar cane field where they had sought refuge.

“The recent use of lethal force against people throughout the country is unprecedented, even for the Islamic Republic and its record of violence,” said Omid Memarian, the deputy director at the Center for Human Rights in Iran, a New York-based group.

Altogether, from 180 to 450 people, and possibly more, were killed in four days of intense violence after the gasoline price increase was announced on Nov. 15, with at least 2,000 wounded and 7,000 detained, according to international rights organizations, opposition groups and local journalists.

The last enormous wave of protests in Iran — in 2009 after a contested election, which was also met with a deadly crackdown — left 72 people dead over a much longer period of about 10 months.

Only now, nearly two weeks after the protests were crushed — and largely obscured by an internet blackout in the country that was lifted recently — have details corroborating the scope of killings and destruction started to dribble out.

The latest outbursts not only revealed staggering levels of frustration with Iran’s leaders, but also underscored the serious economic and political challenges facing them, from the Trump administration’s onerous sanctions on the country to the growing resentment toward Iran by neighbors in an increasingly unstable Middle East.

The gas price increase, which was announced as most Iranians had gone to bed, came as Iran is struggling to fill a yawning budget gap. The Trump administration sanctions, mostly notably their tight restrictions on exports of Iran’s oil, are a big reason for the shortfall. The sanctions are meant to pressure Iran into renegotiating the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and major world powers, which President Trump abandoned, calling it too weak.

Most of the nationwide unrest seemed concentrated in neighborhoods and cities populated by low-income and working-class families, suggesting this was an uprising born in the historically loyal power base of Iran’s post-revolutionary hierarchy.

Many Iranians, stupefied and embittered, have directed their hostility directly at the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who called the crackdown a justified response to a plot by Iran’s enemies at home and abroad.

The killings prompted a provocative warning from Mir Hussein Moussavi, an opposition leader and former presidential candidate whose 2009 election loss set off peaceful demonstrations that Ayatollah Khamenei also suppressed by force.

In a statement posted Saturday on an opposition website, Mr. Moussavi, who has been under house arrest since 2011 and seldom speaks publicly, blamed the supreme leader for the killings. He compared them to an infamous 1978 massacre by government forces that led to the downfall of Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi a year later, at the hands of the Islamic revolutionaries who now rule the country.

“The killers of the year 1978 were the representatives of a nonreligious regime and the agents and shooters of November 2019 are the representatives of a religious government,” he said. “Then the commander in chief was the shah and today, here, the supreme leader with absolute authority.”

The authorities have declined to specify casualties and arrests and have denounced unofficial figures on the national death toll as speculative. But the nation’s interior minister, Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli, has cited widespread unrest around the country.

On state media, he said that protests had erupted in 29 out of 31 provinces and 50 military bases had been attacked, which if true suggested a level of coordination absent in the earlier protests. The property damage also included 731 banks, 140 public spaces, nine religious centers, 70 gasoline stations, 307 vehicles, 183 police cars, 1,076 motorcycles and 34 ambulances, the interior minister said.

The worst violence documented so far happened in the city of Mahshahr and its suburbs, with a population of 120,000 people in Iran’s southwest Khuzestan Province — a region with an ethnic Arab majority that has a long history of unrest and opposition to the central government. Mahshahr is adjacent to the nation’s largest industrial petrochemical complex and serves as a gateway to Bandar Imam, a major port.

The New York Times interviewed six residents of the city, including a protest leader who had witnessed the violence; a reporter based in the city who works for Iranian media, and had investigated the violence but was banned from reporting it; and a nurse at the hospital where casualties were treated.

They each provided similar accounts of how the Revolutionary Guards deployed a large force to Mahshahr on Monday, Nov. 18, to crush the protests. All spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution by the Guards.

For three days, according to these residents, protesters had successfully gained control of most of Mahshahr and its suburbs, blocking the main road to the city and the adjacent industrial petrochemical complex. Iran’s interior minister confirmed that the protesters had gotten control over Mahshahr and its roads in a televised interview last week, but the Iranian government did not respond to specific questions in recent days about the mass killings in the city.

Local security forces and riot police officers had attempted to disperse the crowd and open the roads, but failed, residents said. Several clashes between protesters and security forces erupted between Saturday evening and Monday morning before the Guards were dispatched there.

When the Guards arrived near the entrance to a suburb, Shahrak Chamran, populated by low-income ethnic Arabs, they immediately shot without warning at dozens of men blocking the intersection, killing several on the spot, according to the residents interviewed by phone.

The residents said the other protesters scrambled to a nearby sugar cane field, and that one of them, apparently armed with an AK-47, fired back. The Guards immediately encircled the men and responded with machine gun fire, killing as many as 100 people, the residents said.

The Guards piled the dead onto the back of a truck and departed, the residents said, and relatives of the wounded then transported them to Memko Hospital.

One of the residents, a 24-year-old unemployed college graduate in chemistry who had helped organize the protests blocking the roads, said he had been less than a mile away from the mass shooting and that his best friend, also 24, and a 32-year-old cousin were among the dead.

He said they both had been shot in the chest and their bodies were returned to the families five days later, only after they had signed paperwork promising not to hold funerals or memorial services and not to give interviews to media.

The young protest organizer said he, too, was shot in the ribs on Nov. 19, the day after the mass shooting, when the Guards stormed with tanks into his neighborhood, Shahrak Taleghani, among the poorest suburbs of Mahshahr.

He said a gun battle erupted for hours between the Guards and ethnic Arab residents, who traditionally keep guns for hunting at home. Iranian state media and witnesses reported that a senior Guards commander had been killed in a Mahshahr clash. Video on Twitter suggests tanks had been deployed there.

A 32-year-old nurse in Mahshahr reached by the phone said she had tended to the wounded at the hospital and that most had sustained gunshot wounds to the head and chest.

She described chaotic scenes at the hospital, with families rushing to bring in the casualties, including a 21 year old who was to be married but could not be saved. “‘Give me back my son!,’” the nurse quoted his sobbing mother as saying. “‘It’s his wedding in two weeks!’”

The nurse said security forces stationed at the hospital arrested some of the wounded protesters after their conditions had stabilized. She said some relatives, fearing arrest themselves, dropped wounded love ones at the hospital and fled, covering their faces.

On Nov. 25, a week after it happened, the city’s representative in Parliament, Mohamad Golmordai, vented outrage in a blunt moment of searing antigovernment criticism that was broadcast on Iranian state television and captured in photos and videos uploaded to the internet.

“What have you done that the undignified Shah did not do?” Mr. Golmordai screamed from the Parliament floor, as a scuffle broke out between him and other lawmakers, including one who grabbed him by the throat.

The local reporter in Mahshahr said the total number of people killed in three days of unrest in the area had reached 130, including those killed in the field.

“This regime has pushed people toward violence,” said Yousef Alsarkhi, 29, a political activist from Khuzestan who migrated to the Netherlands four years ago. “The more they repress, the more aggressive and angry people get.”

Political analysts said the protests appeared to have delivered a severe blow to President Hassan Rouhani, a relative moderate in Iran’s political spectrum, all but guaranteeing that hard-liners would win upcoming parliamentary elections and the presidency in two years.

The tough response to the protests also appeared to signal a hardening rift between Iran’s leaders and sizable segments of the population of 83 million.

“The government’s response was uncompromising, brutal and rapid,” said Henry Rome, an Iran analyst at the Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy in Washington. Still, he said, the protests also had “demonstrated that many Iranians are not afraid to take to the streets.”

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