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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats" (Page 10)

Climate activists turn up the heat on elected Dems, criticize inaction

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-e6acd75e3ea44d078ec66108a677733e Climate activists turn up the heat on elected Dems, criticize inaction Sam Dorman fox-news/us/environment/climate-change fox-news/us/environment fox-news/topic/green-new-deal fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox news fnc/politics fnc article 012172b3-a9d7-5f7f-9c2c-cb720a44e9e4

Progressive environmental activists continued ratcheting up pressure on elected Democrats in November, demanding they embrace more aggressive policies to curb emissions and address the effects of climate change.

On Friday, nearly 260 groups sent a letter requesting that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Ill., pursue policies like the Green New Deal instead of “incremental or isolated policy tweaks.”

“We are also prepared to hold legislators accountable if they fail to support bold action,” the letter, signed by groups such as CODEPINK, said. “With millions of lives at stake, we need leaders in Congress with the courage to move beyond the decades-old political status quo that protects corporate interests over the health and well-being of our communities.”

The groups’ letter came amid an internal debate in which Democrats wrestled with how ambitious their climate proposals should be. Activists’ fears likely intensified earlier in November when President Trump filed paperwork to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, a multilateral pact aimed at reducing temperature increases during the century.

WORLD’S THICKEST MOUNTAIN GLACIER IS MELTING, NEW NASA IMAGES REVEAL

The Green New Deal, proposed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., has become a rallying cry for more progressive elements of the party and a symbol of the need to overcome congressional stagnation on the issue.

In January, the House of Representatives created the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, which Castor chairs, but activists were apparently dissatisfied with the progress made since its launch. Pelosi, who created the panel, faced another round of sit-ins at her D.C. office this week, which ended with several arrests.

According to The Washington Post, the group Extinction Rebellion held a hunger strike in an attempt to force the speaker into video-recording the meeting. When they realized she was planning to leave D.C., the protesters attempted to storm past her office’s entrance and into a broader room where her chief of staff sat.

The protests served as yet another indication of tension between the progressive base and Democratic leadership. Pelosi only created the climate committee after an earlier climate sit-in that took place in her office in 2018. Ocasio-Cortez joined that sit-in and has since been a leader in challenging establishment Democrats, like former Vice President Joe Biden, to pursue more ambitious proposals.

Friday’s letter critiqued the Select Committee’s efforts as self-defeating.

“By framing its request for input myopically, the Select Committee has created a self-fulfilling prophecy whereby the solutions it is likely to recommend only partially address the climate crisis,” the letter said.

ABBY HUNTSMAN CHALLENGES JANE FONDA ON ‘FANTASTIC’ GREEN NEW DEAL: ‘NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN’

Protesters also occupied Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s office on Friday, similarly demanding bolder action than what the 2020 hopeful outlined in his climate plan from September. That event was planned by the Sunrise Movement, a group that has cooperated with Ocasio-Cortez in pushing her Green New Deal.

Meanwhile in D.C, actress Jane Fonda led yet another climate demonstration in which police arrested protesters after they blocked traffic in front of the Supreme Court. Fonda, a vocal activist, has been arrested at least four times this year.

It’s unclear how Pelosi intended to react, as her caucus has also been pushing a high-profile impeachment inquiry that included public hearings this week. She previously downplayed the potential of passing the Green New Deal, noting that she couldn’t “say we’re going to take that and pass it.”

More than 150 House Democrats have signed on to legislation introduced Thursday that would seek net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. A similar bill emerged in July utilizing a carbon tax.

Although leading presidential candidates have endorsed the Green New Deal, the candidates and congressional Democrats could scale back their climate advocacy in an attempt to shore up moderates before 2020. While existing plans likely inspired hope among activists, that attempt at moderation might inflame the progressive base.

Friday’s letter called for sweeping action beyond just emissions reductions.

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“We must take a holistic approach to healthy communities that addresses the disproportionate burden of pollution and environmental degradation, as well as other threats, such as mass incarceration and militarization,” the letter said. “We need policies rooted in justice that protect the right to housing and healthcare. And to foster a healthy democracy, we must reverse the erosion of voting rights, including ending partisan gerrymandering.”

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-e6acd75e3ea44d078ec66108a677733e Climate activists turn up the heat on elected Dems, criticize inaction Sam Dorman fox-news/us/environment/climate-change fox-news/us/environment fox-news/topic/green-new-deal fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox news fnc/politics fnc article 012172b3-a9d7-5f7f-9c2c-cb720a44e9e4   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-e6acd75e3ea44d078ec66108a677733e Climate activists turn up the heat on elected Dems, criticize inaction Sam Dorman fox-news/us/environment/climate-change fox-news/us/environment fox-news/topic/green-new-deal fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections/democrats fox news fnc/politics fnc article 012172b3-a9d7-5f7f-9c2c-cb720a44e9e4

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Peggy Noonan: On impeachment, Trump’s defenders have no defense

Westlake Legal Group 990505083001_6107755579001_6107769075001-vs Peggy Noonan: On impeachment, Trump’s defenders have no defense The Wall Street Journal Peggy Noonan fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fnc/opinion fnc bcc735cb-b1b6-5e9c-8b88-20957fef9d95 article

Look, the case has been made. Almost everything in the impeachment hearings this week fleshed out and backed up the charge that President Trump muscled Ukraine for political gain. The pending question is what precisely the House and its Democratic majority will decide to include in the articles of impeachment, what statutes or standards they will assert the president violated.

What was said consistently undermined Mr. Trump’s case, but more deadly was what has never been said. In the two months since Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry was under way and the two weeks since the Intelligence Committee’s public hearings began, no one, even in the White House, has said anything like, “He wouldn’t do that!” or “That would be so unlike him.” His best friends know he would do it and it’s exactly like him.

IN TRUMP IMPEACHMENT TRIAL, SENATE REPUBLICANS COULD TURN TABLES ON DEMS

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The week’s hearings were not a seamless success for Democrats. On Tuesday they seemed to be losing the thread. But by Wednesday and Thursday it was restored.

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Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman was not a persuasive witness and did not move the story forward, because in spite of the obvious patriotism reflected in his record he was annoying—smug and full of himself. He appeared in full dress uniform with three rows of ribbons. When Rep. Devin Nunes called him “Mr. Vindman,” he quickly corrected him: “Ranking Member, it’s Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, please.” Oh, snap. As he described his areas of authority at the National Security Council, he seemed to glisten with self-regard. You got the impression he saw himself as fully in charge of U.S. policy toward Ukraine. Asked if it was true that government offered to make him their defense minister he said “yes” with no apparent embarrassment. I don’t know about you but I don’t like it when a foreign government gets a sense of a U.S. military officer and concludes he might fit right in. (A Ukrainian official later said the job offer was a joke.)

Mr. Vindman – I’m sorry, Lt. Col. Vindman – self-valorized, as other witnesses have, and tugged in his opening statement on America’s heart strings by addressing his father, who brought his family from the Soviet Union 40 years ago: “Dad, . . . you made the right decision. . . . Do not worry, I will be fine for telling the truth.”

CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF THIS COLUMN IN THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY PEGGY NOONAN

Westlake Legal Group 990505083001_6107755579001_6107769075001-vs Peggy Noonan: On impeachment, Trump’s defenders have no defense The Wall Street Journal Peggy Noonan fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fnc/opinion fnc bcc735cb-b1b6-5e9c-8b88-20957fef9d95 article   Westlake Legal Group 990505083001_6107755579001_6107769075001-vs Peggy Noonan: On impeachment, Trump’s defenders have no defense The Wall Street Journal Peggy Noonan fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/opinion fnc/opinion fnc bcc735cb-b1b6-5e9c-8b88-20957fef9d95 article

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Canaparo & von Spakovsky: Did Trump critic Rep. Rashida Tlaib violate campaign finance laws and ethics rules?

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6083118647001_6083126047001-vs Canaparo & von Spakovsky: Did Trump critic Rep. Rashida Tlaib violate campaign finance laws and ethics rules? Hans von Spakovsky GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox-news/person/rashida-tlaib fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 26ae3258-4973-5211-8abd-a578a1f821c3

“It’s pretty simple,” Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., tweeted last March, in calling for President Trump’s impeachment. “No one is above the law, including the President of the United States.”

But perhaps Tlaib – among Trump’s harshest critics in Congress – needs to follow up with another tweet, in the interests of transparency. This tweet could read: “No one is above the law. Except me.”

According to a report issued last week by the House Ethics Committee, there is “substantial reason to believe” that Tlaib used campaign funds for personal expenditures, thereby violating both campaign finance laws and House ethics rules.

TLAIB FRANTICALLY ASKED CAMPAIGN FOR PERSONAL MONEY, MESSAGES SHOW, AS ETHICS PROBES ANNOUNCED

The alleged violations stem from $17,500 that her campaign paid her, apparently to cover personal expenses, after she was elected to Congress.

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Text messages and emails between Tlaib and her campaign staff show that throughout her campaign she repeatedly asked her campaign for money to cover personal expenses like “car maintenance, child care and other necessities.”

At one point, Tlaib asked her campaign to give her $2,000 every two weeks. Between May 7 and Nov. 16, 2018, it did so. Then, on Dec. 1, 2018, it paid her $15,500.

In total, Tlaib’s campaign gave her $45,000 over seven months.

Federal campaign finance law (52 U.S.C. §30114(b)) prohibits the use of campaign funds for personal use. The law, including the regulations promulgated by the Federal Election Commission, defines “personal use” very broadly.

In total, Tlaib’s campaign gave her $45,000 over seven months.

Personal use includes any “commitment, obligation, or expense of a person that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s campaign duties.” That plainly includes car maintenance, child care and “other necessities.”

Additionally, House ethics rules prohibit representatives from using campaign funds for personal expenditures. They and their staffs are tasked with ensuring that their campaigns operate in compliance with the law.

While candidates may take a salary from their campaigns, there are very strict limits on that. Among the litany of restrictions is this one: the salary can only be paid for work performed before the election. The salary has to end the day the candidate is either elected or withdraws from the race and is no longer a candidate.

Tlaib’s eligibility for a salary paid from her campaign funds ended on Nov. 6, 2018, when she was elected to the House of Representatives. Yet her campaign continued to pay her through the end of December. She collected $17,500 after the election.

Tlaib’s lawyers concede that the payments were made after Nov. 6 last year, but argue that the money was for services performed before the election. But according to the report, documents taken from her campaign “suggest otherwise.”

A spreadsheet of campaign salary payments shows that Tlaib’s campaign paid her $2,000 on Nov. 16 last year for work performed between Nov. 1 and 15. And according to that same spreadsheet, the $15,500 paid on Dec. 1 was for work performed between Nov. 16 and Dec. 31 last year.

Additionally, the checks confirm those dates, as do emails from Tlaib’s campaign treasurer. As to the $15,500 payment, her campaign treasurer’s records show that at least $8,000 of it was paid for work performed after the election, and the remaining $7,500 was an unspecified “adjustment.”

It certainly appears to be a clear violation of federal law. Perhaps it’s no surprise, then, that the best arguments her lawyers can come up with are that there was no “conscious disregard” of the law, and that it’s “most irregular” for the Office of Congressional Ethics to look into pre-election activities.

In other words, Tlaib should be excused because she didn’t bother to learn the law or because Congress should permit candidates to violate ethics laws with impunity until they get elected. It doesn’t take a lawyer to see how feeble these arguments are.

Given how bad this looks for Tlaib, it’s no surprise that she and her campaign staff refused all interview requests from the Office of Congressional Ethics.

And Tlaib’s problems extend beyond the Ethics Committee.

Both the Federal Election Commission and the U.S. Justice Department have jurisdiction over violations of federal campaign finance law. The FEC can force those who err to repay the money and impose a civil penalty – even where there was no “conscious disregard” of the law.

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If Tlaib “knowingly and willfully” violated the law, that is a criminal violation that comes under the jurisdiction of the Justice Department. Criminal violations of the law can result not only in civil penalties, but prison time.

We agree with Tlaib that “no one is above the law.” Does she agree with her own tweet?

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY GIANCARLO CANAPARO

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY HANS VON SPAKOVSKY

Hans von Spakovsky is a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation. He served on the Federal Election Commission from 2006 to 2007.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6083118647001_6083126047001-vs Canaparo & von Spakovsky: Did Trump critic Rep. Rashida Tlaib violate campaign finance laws and ethics rules? Hans von Spakovsky GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox-news/person/rashida-tlaib fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 26ae3258-4973-5211-8abd-a578a1f821c3   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6083118647001_6083126047001-vs Canaparo & von Spakovsky: Did Trump critic Rep. Rashida Tlaib violate campaign finance laws and ethics rules? Hans von Spakovsky GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics fox-news/person/rashida-tlaib fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 26ae3258-4973-5211-8abd-a578a1f821c3

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Sandra Smith challenges Dem lawmaker’s claim impeachment hearings showed ‘incredibly convincing testimony’

Westlake Legal Group maddiedean Sandra Smith challenges Dem lawmaker's claim impeachment hearings showed 'incredibly convincing testimony' fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/pennsylvania fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/philadelphia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc ee5e22b2-28c8-50f2-8901-831e3bfb6146 Charles Creitz article

On Friday’s edition of “The Story,” Sandra Smith challenged a Democrat lawmaker’s claim that this week’s public hearings in the Trump impeachment inquiry showcased “incredibly convincing testimony of bribery”

Rep. Madeleine Dean, D-Pa., a member of the House Judiciary Committee, responded affirmatively when Smith asked if she had heard concrete evidence of impeachable offenses on Trump’s behalf.

“These are people of extraordinary credibility,” said Dean, who singled out testimony by former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and ex-National Security Council staffer Fiona Hill. “We heard from most of these folks incredibly convincing, credible testimony of bribery by a president — of a president who had a ‘shadow’ foreign policy.”

IN TRUMP IMPEACHMENT TRIAL, SENATE REPUBLICANS COULD TURN TABLES ON DEMS

However, Smith replied that lawmakers who were in the hearing pointed out there was no discussion explicitly of “bribery.”

“Even a moderate Republican like Congressman [Will] Hurd [R-Texas] … has hinted that he would be a ‘no’ on impeachment,” said Smith, noting Hurd is retiring after this term and does not have anything to “prove” to Trump.

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“What exactly was it that you heard … that you are basing impeaching the president [on]?” she asked.

Dean, whose committee would be tasked with drafting articles of impeachment against Trump, said she rejected claims by critics the remarks presented by witnesses amounted to hearsay.

BIDEN FUMES AT GRAHAM OVER REQUEST FOR DOCUMENTS ON SON HUNTER

“[H]earsay evidence is credible, but we don’t need just hearsay,” she said. “We had first-hand folks who were in on the phone call, and you had the testimony — Dr. Hill’s testimony was without any kind of scrutiny.”

“Where I stand is for our Constitution and for our democracy,” she later added.

When asked if she is prepared to vote to impeach Trump should articles be put before the full House of Representatives, Dean demurred.

“Why would anybody prejudge a vote when you don’t even have the articles in front of you?” Dean said, calling impeachment an “extraordinary remedy” and a “last resort.”

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Dean also said that Trump’s insistence that he wants a Senate trial if impeached was “puzzling.”

“He looks forward to a trial, he wants to bring forward witnesses, which is absolutely puzzling to me — I sit on Judiciary,” she said. “He had the opportunity to bring forward witnesses, he had the opportunity to bring forward any kind of exculpatory information and witnesses — and in fact, he blocked subpoenas — lawful subpoenas — so he’s obstructed Congress from doing such oversight.”

Westlake Legal Group maddiedean Sandra Smith challenges Dem lawmaker's claim impeachment hearings showed 'incredibly convincing testimony' fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/pennsylvania fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/philadelphia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc ee5e22b2-28c8-50f2-8901-831e3bfb6146 Charles Creitz article   Westlake Legal Group maddiedean Sandra Smith challenges Dem lawmaker's claim impeachment hearings showed 'incredibly convincing testimony' fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/pennsylvania fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/philadelphia fox-news/shows/the-story fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc ee5e22b2-28c8-50f2-8901-831e3bfb6146 Charles Creitz article

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Councilman from Pete Buttigieg’s hometown endorses Joe Biden

Westlake Legal Group Davis-Buttigieg-Biden-AP Councilman from Pete Buttigieg's hometown endorses Joe Biden Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/joe-biden fox news fnc/politics fnc article 9fbe263d-9140-5167-bc22-552db4dfe2cc

Former Vice President Joe Biden‘s presidential bid has been endorsed by a top official in South Bend, Ind., where Biden rival Pete Buttigieg serves as mayor.

Biden’s campaign announced on Friday that Dr. Oliver Davis, one of the South Bend Common Council’s longest-serving African Americans, had endorsed the 2020 frontrunner.

“In times like these, when the political winds are fiercely blowing across our country, it’s important for us to have an experienced leader who has been through the diverse storms of life to guide our country,” Davis said.

“That’s why I am very pleased to support Vice President Joe Biden to be our next President of the United States of America.”

KAMALA HARRIS RESPONDS TO BUTTIGIEG’S ‘BLACK AMERICA’ PHOTO GAFFE DURING DEBATE: IT ‘SPEAKS TO A LARGER ISSUE’

Davis’ endorsement came as polls show Buttigieg gaining traction and emerging as a younger potential alternative to Biden. Biden, long perceived as the moderate to beat in the race, has experienced a wave of negative press coverage due to his repeated verbal slip-ups on the campaign trail.

Despite Buttigieg’s national popularity, he’s faced ardent opposition at the local level. For example, the South Bend mayor encountered criticism at a local town hall earlier this year after a shooting that involved a white police officer and ended with the death of 54-year-old Eric Logan, a black man.

After Buttigieg said he would contact the Justice Department about the issue, South Bend’s Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) accused him of political opportunism. “Mayor Buttigieg’s comments have already and will continue to have a detrimental effect on local law enforcement offices and law enforcement officers nationwide,” the FOP said.

“Mayor Buttigieg’s comments and actions are driving a wedge between law enforcement officers and the community they took an oath to serve.”

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Buttigieg later sent pizza to the group in an apparent attempt to make peace. That didn’t go over so well as the FOP released a video rebuffing Buttigieg’s gift. “If this was a lame attempt to apologize to South Bend police officers, it didn’t go over very well,” FOP President Harvey Mills said in a video posted in July.

Buttigieg also faces low support among African Americans and came under fire during Wednesday’s Democratic debate for using a stock photo of a black woman to promote his plan geared toward the “empowerment of black America.”

Westlake Legal Group Davis-Buttigieg-Biden-AP Councilman from Pete Buttigieg's hometown endorses Joe Biden Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/joe-biden fox news fnc/politics fnc article 9fbe263d-9140-5167-bc22-552db4dfe2cc   Westlake Legal Group Davis-Buttigieg-Biden-AP Councilman from Pete Buttigieg's hometown endorses Joe Biden Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/pete-buttigieg fox-news/person/joe-biden fox news fnc/politics fnc article 9fbe263d-9140-5167-bc22-552db4dfe2cc

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Key Dem indicates Warren’s wealth tax has little chance of passing House

Westlake Legal Group Warren-Pascrell-AP-Reuters Key Dem indicates Warren's wealth tax has little chance of passing House Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/finance/taxes fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/elizabeth-warren fox news fnc/politics fnc b1060364-4d39-516f-8aba-4f24c1bab725 article

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s wealth tax wouldn’t have support among the House committee responsible for drafting the policy, a key Democrat on the committee suggested.

Democrats have reportedly been weighing alternatives to the wealth tax proposed by Warren as part of her attempt to convince the public she could fund her massive “Medicare-for-all” proposal. And according to Bloomberg on Thursday, Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., a senior Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, indicated that if Warren, D-Mass., tried pushing the tax as president, it wouldn’t gain enough traction among House Democrats.

“If you’re asking about the wealth tax, no,” Pascrell said. His statement was the latest indication that progressive candidates like Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., would face pushback from Democrats if they take the White House.

Even Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., — a progressive icon who often demands purity over political practicality — indicated Warren’s tax would face an uphill battle. “It’s not something that’s discussed a lot,” she told Bloomberg. She added that she thought the electorate favored a wealth tax but “it’s a matter of, will the more corporate-friendly wing of the party be down for it?”

FORMER CLINTON TREASURY SECRETARY LARRY SUMMERS WARNS ABOUT WARREN TAX PLAN: ‘NOT REMOTELY FEASIBLE’

Warren’s plan would require substantial tax increases on the wealthy as she aimed to implement a $52 trillion health plan without charging the middle class.

Warren previously proposed a 2 percent tax on wealth above $50 million as well as a 3 percent tax on wealth that surpassed $1 billion. That later changed to 6 percent after Warren faced questions over how she would pay for her “Medicare-for-all” plan — a massive proposal that conservatives have warned would cost too much and burden the economy.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the rates could vary and make 100 percent tax rates “typical” for investment income.

Warren has defended her tax, arguing that the wealthy don’t pay their fair share. The tax, she said, would fund universal childcare and pre-k and her plan to cancel student loan debt, among other things.

BILLIONAIRE KEN LANGONE CALLS ELIZABETH WARREN A ‘PHONY AND A LIAR,’ WANTS TO SEE HER DONATIONS TO CHARITY

When former Rep. John Delaney, D-Md., suggested Warren was unrealistic in her push for “Medicare-for-all,” she balked at him, saying she didn’t understand why someone would run for president to “talk about what we really can’t do and shouldn’t fight for.”

It’s unclear how much support the ambitious health plan itself will gain in Congress. While the plan has support from progressives like Ocasio-Cortez, it could face pushback from Democratic leadership.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has already said she hopes the 2020 field moves away from “Medicare-for-all” and toward a health proposal that didn’t eliminate private insurance.

“I would think that hopefully, as we emerge into the election year, the mantra will be more ‘health care for all Americans’ because there is a comfort level that some people have with their current private insurance,” she said at the beginning of November.

Westlake Legal Group Warren-Pascrell-AP-Reuters Key Dem indicates Warren's wealth tax has little chance of passing House Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/finance/taxes fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/elizabeth-warren fox news fnc/politics fnc b1060364-4d39-516f-8aba-4f24c1bab725 article   Westlake Legal Group Warren-Pascrell-AP-Reuters Key Dem indicates Warren's wealth tax has little chance of passing House Sam Dorman fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/finance/taxes fox-news/politics/executive/health-care fox-news/politics/elections fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/elizabeth-warren fox news fnc/politics fnc b1060364-4d39-516f-8aba-4f24c1bab725 article

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Canaparo & Jipping: In impeachment inquiry, ‘whistleblower’ testimony is vital

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6107102995001_6107096256001-vs Canaparo & Jipping: In impeachment inquiry, ‘whistleblower’ testimony is vital Thomas Jipping GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc ee61d8c1-c3c3-5657-bac1-3c5a7eacfbd7 article

Democrats and Republicans have been fighting over whether the person who filed a complaint about President Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky – sparking the impeachment inquiry now underway against Trump – should be called to testify publicly.

We believe the person, who is not technically a whistleblower, should be required to testify before the House Intelligence Committee. Democrats who control the committee disagree. They killed a motion to subpoena the so-called whistleblower, who has said through his attorney that he wants to remain anonymous.

Here’s why the person filing the complaint should testify:

FBI REACHED OUT TO WHISTLEBLOWER’S LEGAL TEAM FOR INTERVIEW, SOURCE TELLS FOX NEWS

Impeaching and removing a president is perhaps the most consequential thing Congress can do, short of declaring war. Impeachment and removal turns our representative democracy on its head, nullifying the last election.

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In the case of a first-term president, impeachment deprives the American people of the chance to pass judgment on his actions and decide if they want to reelect him.

Impeachment is designed to be a constitutional failsafe, a measure of last resort to save the republic from imminent harm posed by the executive.

Public understanding of such a grave step and confidence in its legitimacy demand that Democrats show that the impeachment proceedings now underway are more than simply an exercise of raw partisan politics.

The American people need to know as much as possible about what the president is accused of. Yet the impeachment inquiry against Trump has been marked by secret proceedings, rules favoring one party over the other, and explosive accusations by people who may not even have firsthand knowledge. These are not the marks of a legitimate process. Indeed, they actively undercut the people’s trust.

As then-Sen. Joe Biden said during President Bill Clinton’s impeachment in 1998: “We in Congress had better be very careful before we upset [the people’s] decision and make darn sure … that our decision to impeach him was based on principle and not politics.”

Biden, who went on to become vice president and is now seeking the Democratic nomination to challenge Trump for the presidency next year, was right 21 years ago and his position is the right one today. Not surprisingly, Democrats are far more eager to impeach Republican Trump than they were to impeach Democrat Clinton.

As the House moves toward what appears to be Trump’s likely impeachment (followed by his likely acquittal in a trial in the Republican-controlled Senate), Democrats will need to gather all the facts and present them openly and honestly to the American people.

That means that the complainant needs to answer important questions like:

How did you learn about the Trump-Zelensky call?

Did you have any firsthand information?

Who provided you with second-hand information?

Why did you think this person or persons were trustworthy?

Did the accounts you heard from those sources differ from the memorandum of the call released by the president?

Many more questions need to be asked, of course.

The complainant’s attorneys have said he is willing to answer questions in writing, but that’s not sufficient. The American people need to weigh his credibility. Pieces of paper can’t answer questions.

And there are a lot of questions. As the intelligence community Inspector General noted, the complainant had significant ties to one of the current Democratic presidential candidates.

According to some media reports, the complainant is a registered Democrat who worked for then-Vice President Biden in addition to former CIA Director John Brennan and former National Security Adviser Susan Rice.

If any of these and other unverified reports about the so-called whistleblower are true, then there is good reason to think the complainant is more like a partisan double agent than a true whistleblower.

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And especially because it appears the complainant lacked firsthand knowledge of the events he complained about, there’s the question of who did. And why did they seek him out to pass their information along?

Motive matters. If impeachment is to be anything other than a partisan assault on our democracy, a bipartisan consensus must agree that politics was not the animating factor behind the complaint as well as the subsequent impeachment inquiry.

Current House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., had some good advice back in 1998, when he was already serving in the House.

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“There must never be a narrowly voted impeachment, when impeachment is supported by one of our major political parties and opposed by the other,” Nadler said 21 years ago.  “Such an impeachment will produce divisiveness and bitterness in our politics for years to come and will call into question the very legitimacy of our political institutions.”

Congress should heed that old but wise and very relevant advice of Joe Biden and Jerrold Nadler today.

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Thomas Jipping is deputy director and a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation’s Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6107102995001_6107096256001-vs Canaparo & Jipping: In impeachment inquiry, ‘whistleblower’ testimony is vital Thomas Jipping GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc ee61d8c1-c3c3-5657-bac1-3c5a7eacfbd7 article   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6107102995001_6107096256001-vs Canaparo & Jipping: In impeachment inquiry, ‘whistleblower’ testimony is vital Thomas Jipping GianCarlo Canaparo fox-news/world/conflicts/ukraine fox-news/world fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc ee61d8c1-c3c3-5657-bac1-3c5a7eacfbd7 article

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Gregg Jarrett: Trump impeachment based on unreliable presumptions, rumor and innuendo – Not facts

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The House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment hearing Wednesday posed a conundrum. Better yet, let’s call it a riddle. When is a “quid pro quo” not a “quid pro quo?” The answer is … when it’s “presumed.” 

U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland testified that there was a “quid pro quo” between the U.S. and Ukraine, even though President Trump made it crystal clear to Sondland that there was no “quid pro quo.”

So, how did the ambassador arrive at his opinion that a “quid pro quo” must somehow exist? It turns out that he assumed or “presumed” it. At one point, he called it a mere “guess.”

SONDLAND IMPLICATES TOP OFFICIALS ON UKRAINE, BUT SAYS HE ‘NEVER HEARD’ QUID PRO QUO FROM TRUMP

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The trouble with presumptions and guess-work is that they are often unreliable and sometimes quite wrong. Assumptions and suppositions, by their nature, can be risky and foolish. We should trust only in what we know that is derived from facts. This was the fatal flaw in Sondland’s narrative.

Here is what we actually know: Nowhere in the July 25 telephone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is there evidence of a demand, threat, condition or pressure for a “quid pro quo.” None. That is a demonstrable fact, as proven by a transcript of the conversation that the White House released to the public. Read it for yourself.

TRUMP’S UKRAINE CALL TRANSCRIPT: READ THE DOCUMENT

There is no mention of military aid in exchange for an investigation into either election meddling by Ukraine in 2016 or a potential corrupt act by former Vice President Joe Biden. Indeed, the U.S. financial assistance was delivered to Kiev and there was no investigation launched.

We also know that President Trump personally informed Sondland: “I want nothing, I want nothing. I want no quid pro quo.”

The ambassador confirmed this exculpatory statement Wednesday. It was nearly identical to what he said in his earlier deposition when he testified that the president told him: “I want nothing. I don’t want to give them anything and I don’t want anything from them.” Sondland then elaborated by stating: “He (President Trump) kept repeating no quid pro quo over and over again.”

Yet, throughout his testimony Sondland seemed to oscillate wildly from contradiction to confusion to vacillation. He conspicuously omitted from his lengthy opening statement what proved to be the most stunning revelation of all. He told the committee: “I never heard from President Trump that aid was conditioned on an announcement” of investigations.

Here is the important exchange:

Question: Did the president ever tell you personally about any preconditions for anything?

Sondland: No.

Question: OK. So, the president never told you about any preconditions for the aid to be released?

Sondland: No.

The counsel for Republicans seemed dumbfounded that the ambassador would bury the lead. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, was more direct. He mockingly suggested that Sondland’s omission was a deliberate attempt to hide direct evidence that exonerates the president, while emphasizing Sondland’s presumptive illusion of wrongdoing.

Despite the president’s repeated denial of a “quid pro quo,” how did Sondland reach a contrary conclusion? Sondland surmised it.

While other witnesses have relied on a gossip chain of hearsay and conjecture, the ambassador appears to have invested himself in little more than a hunch. This, of course, was warmly embraced by the mainstream media mob. Consider the devastating cross-examination by Rep. Mike Turner, R-Ohio: 

Question: If you pull up CNN today, right now, their banner says “Sondland ties Trump to withholding aid.” Is that your testimony today, Ambassador Sondland? Because I don’t think you’re saying that.

Sondland: I’ve said repeatedly, congressman, I was presuming.

Question: So no one heard. Not just the president. Giuliani didn’t tell you. Mulvaney didn’t tell you. Nobody. Pompeo didn’t tell you. Nobody else on this planet told you that Donald Trump was tying aid to these investigations. Is that correct?

Sondland: I think I already testified.

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Question: No, answer the question. No one on this planet told you that Donald Trump was tying this aid to the investigation? Because if your answer is yes, then the chairman is wrong. And the headline on CNN is wrong. No one on this planet told you that President Trump was tying aid to investigations. Yes or no?

Sondland: Yes.

Question: So you really have no testimony today that ties President Trump to a scheme to withhold aid from Ukraine in exchange for these investigations.

Sondland: Other than my own presumption.

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Throughout four days of tortured hearings, Americans have been force-fed the gruel of speculation, interpretation, opinion, multiple hearsay, and now “presumptions.”

This is impeachment by rumor and innuendo. And that is no presumption.

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Nunes at impeachment hearing: Intelligence committee ‘hijacked’ by ‘partisan extremists’ to remove this president

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Partisan House Democrats have “hijacked” the Intelligence Committee and are attempting to concoct “ludicrous” theories about President Trump to aid their impeachment efforts, said Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., during his opening statement on Capitol Hill Wednesday.

“The Democrats on this committee spent three years accusing President Trump of being a Russian agent,” he began. “The Democrats vowed… to present a further ‘comprehensive report’ after they finished their investigation into Trump’s treasonous collusion with Russia. For some completely inexplicable reason, after the implosion of their Russia hoax, the Democrats failed to issue that comprehensive report.”

“This episode shows how the Democrats have exploited the Intelligence Committee for political purposes for three years, culminating in these impeaching hearings,” Nunes added. “No conspiracy theory is too outlandish for the Democrats… Clearly, these ludicrous accusations don’t reflect committee members who are honestly searching for the truth. They are the actions of partisan extremists who hijacked the Intelligence Committee… and turned it into a beachhead for ousting an elected President from office.”

Nunes began listing theories long held by Democrats about Trump’s nefarious actions, including the claim that he himself is a Russian agent. He also highlighted claims that the Trump campaign thrived on stolen documents, was assisted by Russia, was blackmailed by Russia, and that Trump was laundering Russian cash through his real estate ventures.

“It’s a long list of charges, all false,” Nunes said. “You have to keep that history in mind as you consider the Democrats’ latest catalog of supposed Trump outrages.”

ALEXANDER VINDMAN DRAWS APPLAUSE DURING IMPEACHMENT HEARING TESTIMONY: ‘THIS IS AMERICA … HERE, RIGHT MATTERS’

Nunes also called out House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., for proceeding with impeachment without bipartisan support, despite making promises to seek the cooperation of both parties.

“The key figures behind this impeachment crusade — all proclaimed that impeachment is so damaging to the country that it can only proceed with bipartisan support,” he said. “Are those declarations suddenly no longer true? Did impeachment become less divisive?

“Of course not,” Nunes continued. “They know exactly what kind of damage they’re inflicting on this nation. But they’ve passed the point of no return.”

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Nunes’ comments came as European Union ambassador Gordon Sondland acknowledged a “potential quid pro quo” situation between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“I shared concerns of the potential quid pro quo regarding the security aid with Senator Ron Johnson,” Sondland said Wednesday. “And I also shared my concerns with the Ukrainians.” He stressed he never got a clear answer on why the aid was held up, saying in the absence of an explanation he came to believe that the aid and the investigations were linked.

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GOP lawmaker slams Schiff during impeachment hearing, demands proof of whistleblower ‘immunity’

Westlake Legal Group ENC3_132186808746750000 GOP lawmaker slams Schiff during impeachment hearing, demands proof of whistleblower 'immunity' fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc Charles Creitz article 3aa5db19-6fa8-5648-9ace-9bc8935af104

House Intelligence Committee member Mike Conaway, R-Texas, criticized Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., as Conaway completed his questioning of witnesses during Tuesday’s impeachment inquiry hearing.

Conaway made a “personal request” that Schiff clearly state the legal reasoning for keeping the Ukraine phone call whistleblower “immune” from testifying, even in a secure, closed-door environment that would protect his identity.

“[I want] you and/or one of the members of the committee that are lawyers to put into the record the federal statute that provides for the absolute immunity or right to immunity that you’ve exerted over and over and over,” Conaway told Schiff. “I don’t think its there,” he said.

“And before you get mad and accuse me of wanting to out the whistleblower, you get upset every time somebody accuses you personally of knowing who the whistleblower is,” Conaway, who is also the top Republican on the House Agriculture Committee, continued.

NUNES: ‘WHATEVER DRUG DEAL THE DEMOCRATS ARE COOKING UP HERE… THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AREN’T BUYING’

As Conaway spoke, Schiff sat largely emotionless in his chair, with his arms crossed and staring straight ahead.

“I get upset every time you… accuse me of — simply because I want to know the whistleblower or we want to know what’s going on — that [Republicans] want to ‘out’ that individual,” the Republican added.

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Conaway told Schiff that he should either prove the whistleblower has the so-called “immunity” the Texas Republican characterized or “level the playing field.”

“I know that you’ve overruled my request for a closed-door subpoena [of the whistleblower],” he said. “I do think it’s important you put in to record the basis on which you continue to assert this absolute right to anonymity of the whistleblower.”

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The Republican went on to claim House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., had penned a Sept. 23 “Dear Colleague” letter to all 435 elected representatives that asserted whistleblowers are “required by law to testify to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees.”

Therefore, Conaway claimed, Schiff is either “defying” Pelosi, and thereby federal law, or Pelosi has the legal standard incorrect.

“At least set the record straight,” he added. “Is the whistleblower required by law, as the speaker said, to testify to us or not, and what is this absolute right to anonymity?”

After Conaway yielded back to Schiff, the chairman referenced the federal whistleblower statute, and then asked Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Ala., to begin her questioning.

Westlake Legal Group ENC3_132186808746750000 GOP lawmaker slams Schiff during impeachment hearing, demands proof of whistleblower 'immunity' fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc Charles Creitz article 3aa5db19-6fa8-5648-9ace-9bc8935af104   Westlake Legal Group ENC3_132186808746750000 GOP lawmaker slams Schiff during impeachment hearing, demands proof of whistleblower 'immunity' fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/politics/trump-impeachment-inquiry fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/republicans fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/person/adam-schiff fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/politics fnc Charles Creitz article 3aa5db19-6fa8-5648-9ace-9bc8935af104

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