"Our allies no longer trust or respect us, and our enemies no longer fear us," the former officers and officials wrote in a letter released Thursday.Some served under Trump »
One day before Jake Gardner fatally shot James Scurlock outside his bar in downtown Omaha, President Trump threatened to send the military to Minneapolis in response to violent clashes between police and protesters following the death of George Floyd in police custody, tweeting “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” The timing of Trump's tweet, which Twitter has since removed from public view for violating its policy on glorifying violence, “is significant in terms of Jake Gardner's affinity for the president,” special prosecutor Fredrick Franklin told members of the press in Omaha on Wednesday. Last Tuesday, Franklin announced that a grand jury had decided to indict Gardner on four felony charges, including manslaughter, in relation to the fatal shooting of Scurlock, a 22-year-old unarmed Black protester, during demonstrations against police violence in Omaha on May 30.
And now, after nearly two months of slow but steady decline, new daily U.S. coronavirus cases are rising again, with the seven-day average increasing by 21 percent — from 34,588 to 41,868 — since Sept. Is this the start of the pandemic's dreaded “fall wave”? The short answer is… it's complicated.
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson, a Republican who has steadfastly refused to require residents to wear masks, tested positive for the coronavirus, his office said Wednesday. Parson was tested after his wife, Teresa, tested positive earlier in the day. Teresa Parson had experienced mild symptoms, including a cough and nasal congestion, spokeswoman Kelli Jones said.
At least 50 journalists in the US have been arrested during Black Lives Matter demonstrations across the US, while dozens of others have also been injured by rubber bullets, pepper spray and tear gas. The US Press Freedom Tracker has collected nearly 500 incidents from 382 reports, from the unrest in Minneapolis in the wake of George Floyd's killing by police in late May, to demonstrations in more than 70 cities across 35 states since. At least 46 journalists were arrested between the end of May and the beginning of June, according to data collected by the organisation.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson reacted Wednesday night to Louisville police officers dodging charges in the killing of Breonna Taylor by claiming Black Lives Matter had peddled a “lie” about the 26-year-old's fatal shooting, all while falsely accusing Taylor's boyfriend of being a drug dealer. With protests erupting in Louisville hours after a grand jury decided not to charge three cops with killing Taylor, Carlson recapped the decision while complaining about the way Taylor's death had been portrayed by social justice activists and the press. “In March, three Louisville police officers served a search warrant at the apartment of a woman called Breonna Taylor,” Carlson said.
Kenyan investigators are to recommend the prosecution of at least 15 top government officials and businesspeople over the alleged misuse of millions of dollars meant for buying Covid-19 medical supplies, the BBC has learned. The probe uncovered evidence of tenders being allegedly given to politically connected individuals and businesses. The state body responsible for purchases, the Kenya Medical Supply Authority (Kemsa), has denied that any money was stolen.
President Donald Trump's potential nominee to the Supreme Court previously rejecting the idea of former President Barack Obama filling a vacancy during an election year that she said could “dramatically flip the balance of power” in a recently-resurfaced interview. The interview shows Amy Coney Barrett, a federal judge who sits on the Seventh Circuit, discussing the former president's nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court in 2016 following the death of the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a conservative stalwart. Ms Barrett suggested in the interview with CBS News that she was against the idea of Mr Obama selecting Mr Garland, often considered an apolitical nominee and centrist judge, because he was not a conservative like justice Scalia.
Long-time Trump ally and former Fox News regular Joe diGenova lashed out at the conservative-leaning network on Wednesday, claiming Fox News “fears George Soros” and wondering aloud what the liberal philanthropist “has on” Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott. For more than a week now, right-wing media outlets and pro-Trump pundits have railed against Fox News for an on-air segment that featured multiple hosts shutting down Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich just as he began a conspiratorial rant against Soros—who has long been the target of anti-Semitic tropes from the right. After Gingrich asked if the topic was “verboten,” the discussion ended in a long awkward silence.
The victims of sexual abuse in Germany's Catholic Church can apply for compensation payments of up to 50,000 euros from next year, the chairman of the German Bishops' Conference (DBK) said on Thursday. According to a study from 2018 on abuse in the Catholic Church, at least 3,677 minors were victims of sexual violence by at least 1,670 members of the clergy in Germany between 1946 and 2014. In addition, victims can be reimbursed for therapy costs, said DBK Chairman Georg Baetzing.
The number of new jobless claims for last week has come in worse than anticipated. The Labor Department said Thursday that 870,000 Americans filed new jobless claims last week, which was about 4,000 claims higher than the revised total from the week prior. This was another week that the new jobless claims remained below one million, but months into the coronavirus crisis, they're still at a level that far surpasses the worst week of the Great Recession.
A US Electoral Commission chief issued a sharp rebuke against Donald Trump on Wednesday after the president called for mail ballots to be dumped, as he refused to say whether he would leave office in the event of an election defeat to Democrat rival Joe Biden. Ellen Weintraub, Federal Commission Commissioner (FEC), warned the president that America does not simply "get rid" of ballots. In case anyone is unclear on the concept, in the United States of America, we do not 'get rid of' ballots.
According to the QAnon conspiracy theory, liberal elites are kidnapping children and forcing them into sex trafficking. The outlandish accusations aside, most missing children cases have no relation to kidnapping. More often, missing children turn out to be runaways.
President Trump's campaign is reportedly in discussion with state and national Republicans to "bypass election results and appoint loyal electors in battleground states where Republicans hold the legislative majority." At least that's the report from a terrifying article written by Barton Gellman in The Atlantic. While this scenario is somewhat far-fetched, we should be clear that what Gellman describes here is tantamount to a coup, a complete break with the constitutional order that would unquestionably precipitate large-scale unrest and potentially the crackup of the United States.
American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp and ex-Chuck Schumer aide Chris Hahn discuss religion and the Supreme Court.
The Clear Visual Distinction Between Military and Law Enforcement Act, introduced by US Sen. Tammy Duckworth, would prohibit most federal agents from wearing camouflage. The legislation was introduced in response to federal agents wearing military-style fatigues on the streets of Portland, Oregon. In a statement, Duckworth accused the Trump administration of having "blurred the lines between military service members and law enforcement officers."
The Ohio Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the death sentence for an Illinois man convicted of abducting his estranged girlfriend from Kentucky in 2014 and killing her along an Ohio highway. Death row inmate Terry Froman was sentenced to death in 2017 by a Warren County jury for shooting Kimberly Thomas on Interstate 75 in southwestern Ohio. Prosecutors say Froman became vengeful when Thomas ordered him out of her Mayfield, Kentucky, home.
In the final weeks before the 2020 election, the outsize role of conspiracy theories in American politics has become unmistakable. For some Trump supporters in particular, campaign-season news is filtered through the powerful idea that hidden forces are at work, that the “deep state”—a supposed secret, shadowy and sinister group of leftist politicians, government bureaucrats, Chinese scientists, journalists, academics and intellectuals—is seeking to destroy American values. In fact, they go all the way back to America's earliest years: In the late 1790s, Jedidiah Morse, the congregational minister in Charlestown, Mass., and a well-known author of geography textbooks, drew national attention by suggesting that a secret organization called the Bavarian Illuminati was at work “to root out and abolish Christianity, and overturn all civil government.”
A business jet that was reported stolen in Mexico crashed in a Guatemalan jungle on Wednesday near a hidden airstrip after making a mysterious trip to Venezuela, leaving two men dead near an onboard stash of drugs and weapons. In a statement, the Guatemalan military confirmed the crash of the Hawker 800 twin-engine jet in a mountainous area in the Central American country's Alta Verapaz region, but said the men had not yet been identified. The jet took off from the Cuernavaca airport, located about 45 miles (72 km) south of Mexico City, around midday on Tuesday without authorization or a flight plan, then landed at Zulia airport in northwestern Venezuela near the border with Colombia several hours later, the Guatemalan military said.
Tensions are rising along the Pacific coast of South America as a giant Chinese fishing fleet of roughly 300 vessels moves from the edge of the Galapagos marine preserve to the waters off Peru. Tuesday afternoon, President Trump excoriated China on a variety of issues, ranging from the coronavirus to human rights, in a speech to the United Nations. He singled out Chinese fishing and maritime behavior, saying the country “dumps millions and millions of tons of plastic and trash into the oceans, overfishes other countries' waters” and destroys coral reefs.
Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf told senators during his confirmation hearing on Wednesday that white supremacists are the "most persistent and lethal" internal threat the United States is facing. Earlier this month, a DHS whistleblower named Brian Murphy said Wolf instructed him to stop providing intelligence assessments on the threat of Russian interference in the United States. Murphy also alleged that Acting Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Ken Cuccinelli told him to change an assessment's section on white supremacy to make "the threat appear less severe" and to add information "on the prominence of violent 'left-wing' groups."
The way lawyers for Kyle Rittenhouse tell it, he wasn't just a scared teenager acting in self-defense when he shot to death two Kenosha, Wisconsin, protesters. “They're playing to his most negative characteristics and stereotypes, what his critics want to perceive him as — a crazy militia member out to cause harm and start a revolution,” said Robert Barnes, a prominent Los Angeles defense attorney.
Hana El Sahly, associate professor of virology and microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, last year became chairwoman of the FDA's Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee - the panel of outside experts that will make recommendations on whether coronavirus vaccines should be approved. In July, however, El Sahly was named one of three lead investigators for Moderna's late-stage COVID-19 vaccine trial, creating a potential conflict of interest. Moderna has said it could have enough data to show whether its vaccine is safe and effective as soon as November.
Senate Homeland Security Committee chair connects the dots between Hunter Biden and his dealings in Russia, China
The vast majority of states, both large and small, are virtually ignored by campaigns because their electoral votes can be taken for granted, and, once in office, a president has no obligation to serve the states that didn't vote for him. As Michael Kazin writes at The Nation, the Electoral College was obviously a clunky mess from the moment its current form took effect, which is why it has nearly been abolished several times (and others are working on it today). None of the defenses of the system by conservatives, who like it because they perceive a momentary partisan advantage, withstand a moment's scrutiny.
The Trump administration has said the US won't participate, however, and China is also opting out. Health experts are concerned that the US's absence from Covax could hinder the country's access to vaccines developed in other countries. In recent weeks, 156 countries have formally signed on to Covax, a major effort spearheaded by the World Health Organization to develop, manufacture, and distribute coronavirus vaccines.
“Enfranchising 16-year-olds would be good for them and good for our democracy.”
“At 16, most kids have little awareness of politics, civics, or American history.”
“Voting is habit forming...which underscores the importance of having as stable an environment as possible for the youngest voters.”
“Keeping the voting age at 18 is not a slap at 16-year-olds. It is recognition that an informed electorate is the best kind.”
“When young people’s participation lags badly, issues important to them receive short shrift in the public discourse.”