As the Supreme Court considers whether it is legal for the Trump administration to cancel the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, the president and his allies have begun spinning a familiar — and false — narrative about the program's nearly 700,000 beneficiaries. Many of the people in DACA, no longer very young, are far from 'angels,'” Trump tweeted Tuesday morning, hours before the Supreme Court was scheduled to hear opening arguments in the DACA case. Some are very tough, hardened criminals.
Angered by the testimony of ousted ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, California Rep. Jackie Speier upbraided a reporter for The Hill and ripped the outlet's publication of columns by John Solomon, the conservative journalist whose work is at the center of what Yovanovitch described as a “smear campaign” against her. “I just find it reprehensible that any newspaper would just be willing to put that kind of crap out that is not — has no veracity whatsoever, and not check to see if it had any veracity,” said Speier, a Democrat serving in her seventh term in the House, according to audio of the exchange reviewed by POLITICO. Speier launched into her critique of The Hill after fielding a question from its senior staff writer Scott Wong about who her dream witness would be at the impeachment proceedings.
Genealogy websites and a cheek swab enabled U.S. Marshals to arrest a man suspected of being the “Potomac River Rapist,” who terrorized the nation's capital in the 1990s. News outlets report 60-year-old Giles Daniel Warrick is now awaiting extradition from Horry County, South Carolina. Authorities said DNA evidence matched family profiles in genealogy services, enabling investigators to narrow their search after interviewing Warrick's relatives.
An American teacher's death in the Dominican Republic was being investigated Thursday as a murder. Police said they found Patricia Anton deceased in her apartment in Puerto Plata, on the country's northern coast, with her hands and feet bound.
American Airlines flight attendants are "begging" not to have to work on the Boeing 737 Max when it returns to service after its grounding, Lori Bassani, the head of the union representing them, said Thursday. "I hear from flight attendants every day, and they're begging me not to make them go back up in that plane," Bassani said, according to The Dallas Morning News. The 737 Max has been grounded around the world since March, which saw the second of two deadly crashes involving the aircraft.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston caught an airline passenger trying to smuggle 35 pounds of liquid cocaine in shampoo bottles into the country earlier this week, the agency said in a press release. The CBP said officers discovered the bottles containing cocaine valued at more than $400,000 in the checked luggage of a 26-year-old Colombian citizen Monday after observing him at baggage claim and conducting a bag search. “Our officers are the first line of defense at our ports of entry, so they are trained in the various smuggling methods people use to bring illicit goods into the U.S.,” CBP Port Director Shawn Polley said in the press release.
Interim president Jeanine Anez moved Thursday to consolidate power in deeply polarized Bolivia, winning recognition from the United States and immediately shifting the country's foreign policy on erstwhile ally Venezuela. Anez was expected to complete her government line-up, having named new military chiefs and half of her proposed 20-member cabinet - including Defense Minister Fernando Lopez Julio - the night before. "We have come to pacify the country," Lopez Julio said in a speech at the military college in La Paz.
The Democratic National Committee on Thursday announced the 10 candidates who will participate in the fifth Democratic primary debate in Atlanta on Wednesday. They are: Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Tulsi Gabbard, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang. Julian Castro, who participated in previous debates, most recently in October at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, didn't make the cut.
Appearing live on CNN Thursday, Kellyanne Conway, special counselor to President Trump, was asked to respond to the assessment given by her husband, George, that testimony of career diplomats in the first public impeachment hearings was damning for her boss. George Conway, a conservative lawyer and outspoken Trump critic, appeared on MSNBC as a guest analyst during Thursday's hearings. While introducing a clip of George Conway, CNN's Wolf Blitzer told Kellyanne Conway he wanted to ask her a “sensitive” political question.
Japan's Defense Ministry is considering whether to deploy U.S-made Patriot missile defense interceptors to protect the games. To ensure the security of Tokyo, where the Summer Games will open on July 24, the ministry wants to equip the 1st Air Defense Missile Group with PAC-3 MSE interceptors to defend against possible threats such as ballistic missiles, drones and unidentified aircraft,” according to Kyodo News. The deployment of the improved ground-based batteries by units responsible for defending the capital's airspace is planned between April and July, earlier than in other parts of Japan.
A purported street-gang leader from suburban Chicago who became radicalized in prison faces federal charges accusing him of seeking to provide money to Islamic State militants in Syria, according to a complaint unsealed Friday in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Jason Brown, the 37-year-old leader of the AHK gang, could be heard on secret FBI recordings speaking admiringly about beheadings by the Islamic State group, the 27-page complaint says. AHK, which prosecutors say traffics drugs throughout the Chicago area, is comprised of former members of the Black P-Stone, Gangster Disciples and Four Corner Hustlers who converted to Islam, the court filings say.
A San Fransisco district court on Friday found pro-life activists guilty in a lawsuit brought by Planned Parenthood after the activists surreptitiously filmed executives of the abortion group discussing the sale of fetal body parts. A ten person federal jury convicted activists David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress on charges of conspiracy to commit fraud, breach of contract and trespass and violation of state and federal recording laws in Maryland, California and Florida. Planned Parenthood will be awarded $870,000 in punitive damages.
Hong Kong's leader Carrie Lam on Friday condemned a "barbaric attack" on her justice minister, who fell while being surrounded by a crowd of jeering pro-democracy protesters in London. It was the most physical confrontation involving a member of Lam's cabinet since the protests, now in their sixth month, erupted in the international finance hub. Teresa Cheng, Hong Kong's deeply unpopular Secretary for Justice, was ambushed by around a dozen masked demonstrators as she prepared to attend a speaking event on Thursday night in London.
Billionaire George Soros opened the new main campus of his Central European University in Vienna on Friday, saying it would not halt its struggle to defend academic freedom from Viktor Orban, the right wing leader he says hounded it from Hungary. Since it was founded by Soros in 1991, CEU has been a gateway to the West for thousands of students from eastern Europe, offering U.S.-accredited graduate degree programmes in an academic climate that celebrates free thought. "CEU has steadfastly defended the principle of academic freedom against a concentrated attack by the corrupt government of Viktor Orban, who was hellbent to destroy it," Soros said at the inauguration of CEU's Vienna campus.
WASHINGTON – Brett Kavanaugh waited more than 13 months to take a victory lap. On Thursday night, a hero's welcome greeted the associate justice who made it to the Supreme Court by the narrowest of margins last October after two contentious Senate confirmation hearings. The annual black-tie dinner of the Federalist Society – the nation's premier gathering of conservatives in the law – is dedicated to the memory of the late Associate Justice Antonin Scalia.
Omar Abdulaziz, a Saudi activist in exile in Canada, said that Twitter is an important tool for many Saudi dissidents but comes with risks. Abdulaziz was friends with murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The two of them were working to create an "army" of internet users to combat Saudi propaganda before Khashoggi was killed.
A US citizen and military veteran suffering from a mental health condition will reportedly receive $190,000 (£147,988) from a Michigan city after local officials transferred him to ICE detention following an arrest last year. Jilmar Ramos-Gomez, a decorated Marine veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, was arrested while experiencing an episode in which he lost all recollection, according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Police found the veteran, who was born and raised in Michigan, on the helipad of a hospital after he started a small fire and pulled an alarm, according to reports.
Yovanovitch methodically outplayed a series of Republican efforts to cast her firing as normal, the president's behavior as unremarkable, and the harm she suffered as negligible–rather than the prelude to a shadow diplomatic effort to coerce Ukraine into aiding Trump's reelection. Instead, she made it clear that she would have been an obstacle to the president's pressure on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had she remained in Kyiv. At one point, she told Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT) that she would have opposed the summer 2019 suspension of $400 million in U.S. military aid and would never have asked Zelensky to pursue the conspiracy theory that Ukraine interfered in the 2016 election.
Currently the Marine Corps deploys infantry battalions to Okinawa, Japan on a rotational basis as part of the Unit Deployment Program. While in Japan, the battalions fall under 4th Marine Regiment, which has a permanent headquarters in Okinawa. The 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, while not part of the Unit Deployment Program, contributes another infantry battalion to Okinawa for several months per year.
Vietnam sentenced a music teacher to 11 years in prison on Friday for Facebook posts that allegedly undermined the one-party state, which has been accused of tightening the noose on online dissent. Communist Vietnam has long jailed its critics but has come under fire recently for targeting users on Facebook, a popular forum for activists in the country where all independent media is banned. Nguyen Nang Tinh is the latest activist jailed for his Facebook comments, including posts about police brutality, land rights, and a Taiwanese steel firm that dumped toxic sludge into the ocean, killing masses of fish off the coast of Vietnam.
Bolivia's interim government said it had asked Venezuelan and Cuban officials to leave the country, including scores of Cuban doctors, accusing them of instigating unrest in the wake of the resignation of former president Evo Morales. The foreign policy shake-up in Bolivia, outlined by the new foreign minister on Friday, comes as protests against the four-day-old government of conservative interim President Jeanine Anez roil the country amid its biggest political upheaval in over a decade. Venezuela and Cuba were key allies for leftist Morales, who swept to office as the country's first indigenous president in 2006 and resigned under pressure on Sunday after weeks of protests and violence over a disputed Oct. 20 election.
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. The 16-year-old suspected of fatally shooting two students and wounding three others at their high school Thursday was an unlikely gunman, classmates and neighbors said. Following a 16-second burst of gunfire that ended with the suspect shooting himself in the head, the boy was is in critical condition at a local hospital, said Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.
Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) and Senator Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) plan to introduce legislation on Thursday that makes public housing more energy efficient, at a cost of over $100 billion. The plan, dubbed the Green New Deal for Public Housing Act, will call for renovation of public housing units to install community gardens and organic grocery stores along with on-site childcare services, according to the Washington Post. “Importantly, the working people who have been most impacted by decades of disinvestment in public housing will be empowered to lead this effort and share in the economic prosperity that it generates for our country,” Sanders said in a statement.