Kerry Bentivolio is attacking one of his opponents in the 11th Congressional District race, Rocky Raczkowski, over Raczkowski’s use of a fundraising firm to collect donations for two past campaigns that never ended up happening.
Bentivolio posted a video over the weekend of a Fox 2 report on a controversial fundraising firm utilized by Raczkowski, Base Connect.
Bentivolio said “Wow. My opponent, Rocky Raczkowski, in Michigan’s 11th Congressional race, has been perpetually preying on the elderly for campaign donations. This is what a CROOKED CAREER POLITICIAN looks like. Show this to your friends for an old vet like myself.”
It’s common for a campaign to hire a 3rd party firm to help with fundraising, though collecting donations for two races that didn’t occur is unusual.
Fox 2 confronted leaders of the firm hired by Raczkowski after family members of alleged victims demanded answers as to why their elderly relatives were being hounded to write checks, and for non existent campaigns?
Despite denials by Raczkowski, Fox 2 provided paperwork showing he knew what was going on.
“For 10 months, President Donald Trump and his team abided by a simple rule: Don’t go after special counsel Robert Mueller.
But this weekend, as he digested news that the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election was circling nearer to him and his family, Trump came closer than ever to abandoning his unspoken truce with Mueller, reigniting fears among Republicans that the president could fire the special counsel.
Cooped up in the White House without any public events on his schedule and cable news blaring, Trump unleashed a Twitter tirade that differed from past outbursts in one significant way: He mentioned Mueller directly. Before this weekend, Trump had only referenced Mueller by name once on Twitter, in a retweet.
Now, it appears, Mueller is fair game.
“The Mueller probe should never have been started in that there was no collusion and there was no crime,” Trump tweeted Saturday night. On Sunday morning, he asked, “Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans?”
“A New York Democratic congressman is being accused of promoting violence against President Trump after suggesting during a town hall that citizens may have to take up arms against the president if he doesn’t follow the law,” per Fox News.
“‘I mean, this is where the Second Amendment comes in quite frankly, because you know, what if the president was to ignore the courts? What would you do? What would we do?’ Rep. Tom Suozzi, D-N.Y., said during a March 12 Q&A session with constituents in Huntington, on Long Island.”
The New York congressman’s meeting with constituents was recorded and streamed live on Facebook, but is not available on the congressman’s official Facebook page at this time.
Some are saying the comments are out of bounds: “‘When resistance and obstruction don’t work out, Tom Suozzi proposes violence,’ National Republican Congressional Committee spokesman Chris Martin said in a statement. ‘He’s completely out of touch.'”
The lawmaker’s defenders say that he was merely invoking the constitutional right to defend against tyranny, and was not calling for any kind of armed insurrection against the president.
It’s nice to hear a Democrat paying respect to the legal right to bear arms, perpetually under attack from those on the left, but perhaps they and Republicans alike would do well to cool it with the violence-tinged rhetoric which, sadly, has not been without consequences.
Clinton keeps proving she was always Democrats’ worst choice
Roger Wicker, Dean Heller get a break
Tim Pawlenty…former and future governor?
Justice Department: We’ve all seen the story about the government official who is caught engaging in misconduct and is then allowed to retire with full pension. If FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe misled investigators, as an upcoming Inspector General report is expected to find, then it’s only natural that he should be fired and lose the full pension that he would have become eligible for had he been allowed to stay on through March 18.
That’s why the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, D-Calif., has urged caution and noted that McCabe’s firing two days before he could retire at age 50 “may have been justified.” Schiff has been no shrinking violet when it comes to savaging Trump or attacking Republicans on his committee, so his willingness even to entertain this possibility is a pretty important guidepost for forming opinions on McCabe’s firing.
Of course, it’s always hard to judge what sort of effect President Trump’s aggressive Twitter attacks on McCabe will have. Because it’s Twitter, that effect is almost certainly overrated by journalists. For the average voter, this is just more inside baseball.
But these rants probably don’t help Trump with anyone but his hardest core of support — the pro-Trump base that consumes the absolute highest amount of news and already votes in presidential primaries.
Liberals and some Democrats are naturally seeking to portray the decision as a political hit job on an honest public servant.
Hillary Clinton: If she ceased to exist, Trump would want to reinvent her. Hillary did herself no favors with her assertion in India that Trump voters and Trump-supporting regions were backward, economically unproductive, and voted against her because they were expecting and hoping that his racist policies would lift them out of their troubles.
Her hint that the franchise should perhaps be attached to economic production is intriguing, if impractical. But her rhetoric is just the ticket if Democrats want to spoil an otherwise-promising electoral opportunity in 2018.
Before the 2016 primaries began, we frequently brought up the Democrats’ post-Obama problem. Their former president, a rock-star candidate with a political magnetism and skill rarely found anywhere, gave their extremely weak party a reprieve at a moment when its future looked very uncertain. Would they go back to fielding Al Gores and John Kerrys for president — and lose?
Our view on this had already been mostly vindicated by the 2014 blowout, but the 2016 wipeout of Democrats at every level put a nice exclamation mark to it.
With Obama behind them, the leaders in Democrats’ future seemed pretty hopeless. It was a choice between Clinton, someone very, very old (say, Bernie Sanders or Joe Biden), the handful of remaining important Democratic governors (Andrew Cuomo?!), and perhaps a few extreme leftist lawmakers (Bernie Sanders again, or perhaps someone more obscure who embraces “democratic socialism”).
None of these choices were that good in 2016. But in case it matters, we’ve learned since, as Clinton has proven it again and again, that she was always the worst choice by far.
Mississippi: State Sen. Chris McDaniel has switched from running against Sen. Roger Wicker, R,to running for the seat that is opening up with Sen. Thad Cochran’s retirement. Given McDaniel’s history, his wild 2014 run and his refusal to concede when defeated, that helps Wicker avoid a contest that would have at least been very bitter and unpleasant.
McDaniel is now looking for the party to unify behind him, but that won’t happen,
and he doesn’t expect it to. He obviously views his chances as better in a potentially crowded open primary than in a one-on-one race against Wicker. It stands to reason, as Wicker is simply not as moderate as Cochran. With Trump’s support and surely would have been a lot harder to beat.
We have yet to learn how much (if at all) the state’s Republican primary voters have been turned off by McDaniel’s 2014 melodrama.
The primary election is being held June 5.
Nevada: Who says President Trump’s Twitter is purely destructive? He appears to have
persuaded Danny Tarkanian to drop out of the Senate primary against incumbent Sen. Dean Heller, and get into the open fourth district House race, which is being vacated by accused serial sexual harasser Ruben Kihuen.
As much of a disappointment as Heller might be for conservatives, the Senate primary was probably a fight that Republicans can’t afford to have this year. As we have previously observed, Republicans are very likely to lose the House in November, and so the best hope for the Trump administration remaining effective in any sense is to retain the Senate, so that his appointments (including perhaps another Supreme Court appointment) can go through without drama after January 2019.
And Senate retention does seem quite possible at this point, given this year’s Senate map and its Republican-favoring shape. But there’s more: Republicans are basically guaranteed Senate control if the GOP hangs on in Nevada.
A lot of conservatives would want to roll the dice anyway, but this reshuffling of the race probably makes their task of keeping this seat at least a little bit easier.
Utah: State Rep. Mike Kennedy, R, announced a Senate bid last week, making him a longshot against Mitt Romney in the primary.
His chances would probably have been better under the old system, whereby he could wrangle enough support at convention to keep Romney off the ballot. But now that candidates can also make the ballot through petition signatures, it’s highly unlikely that Kennedy will actually stop Romney.
He may, however, raise his name recognition for the future. The primary will be held on June 26.
West Virginia: Maybe this primary isn’t quite what it seemed? Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, R, has released a poll in response to one put out by his opponent, Rep. Evan Jenkins, R. You might not be surprised to learn that each candidate has his opponent sucking fumes in third place. These two, plus just-out-of-jail former coal-mining CEO Don Blankenship are vying for the GOP nomination to face Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va. The primary election is being held May 8.
Illinois: Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner continues to look very vulnerable as Democrats prepare to select their nominee on Tuesday. The clearest sign is the apparent narrowness of his lead over conservative primary challenger Jeanne Ives, who was just endorsed last week by National Review. The Democratic Governors’ Association has even gotten into the Republican primary, running ads to promote Ives’ conservative positions.
Republicans united in 2014 to elect Rauner, hoping to improve their state’s fiscal situation and at least stop the Democrats from playing too much offense on social issues. But as governor, he has been an extremely aggressive abortion advocate, especially, signing bills attacking pregnancy help centers and expanding state funding for abortion. He has lost the party base, and although he is expected to survive on Tuesday, he will be fatally weakened ahead of November’s election.
J.B. Pritzker is the favorite and the establishment man seeking the Democratic nomination, but progressive leftist candidate Dan Biss is making a late move. He could prove stronger than expected in the year of the #Resistance, given the low turnout that usually characterizes Illinois primaries. Chris Kennedy, son of Robert F. Kennedy, is also running.
Minnesota: Former two-term Gov. Tim Pawlenty, R, originally planned to run for Senate in 2002. He had to be talked into running for governor instead by Karl Rove.
Evidently, he was happy with the outcome. Because although he hasn’t made any official decisions yet, but he is laying the groundwork for a possible campaign to be governor again. If he runs, he will have to contend with at least one other serious candidate who has already gotten into the race — Hennepin County commissioner Jeff Johnson.
Minnesota Republicans often (though not always) agree to abide by the party endorsement, which will be coming at the state party convention in early June. The primary election takes place August 14.
“A Middle East expert and analyst who consulted with the Trump administration and was questioned by investigators for special counsel Robert Mueller was convicted on a federal child pornography charge in 1991, prison records obtained by POLITICO show.
George Nader, 58, was involved in several foreign policy meetings during the Trump transition and at the White House last year.
Nader received a six-month sentence from a federal court in Northern Virginia in 1991 on a felony charge of transporting sexually explicit materials in foreign commerce, according to records from the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
U.S. District Court Judge Claude Hilton also imposed a $2,000 fine on Nader, the records show.
Details of the Virginia case have not been previously reported, but it was known that Nader faced a similar charge in federal court in Washington in 1984 involving allegations of importing from the Netherlands magazines depicting nude boys. A judge dismissed those charges after ruling that the search warrant issued for Nader’s home was invalid.”
“U.S. Capitol Police have arrested a male Democratic operative for assaulting a female Interior Department communications official following a House budget hearing Thursday.
The assault happened after Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke finished testifying on the department’s 2019 budget proposal before the House Committee on Natural Resources. The suspect identified himself as a reporter with American Bridge and pushed a female Interior Department communications official to the floor, chasing after Zinke, The Daily Caller News Foundation learned.
Interior communications director Laura Rigas was “greatly alarmed and extremely irate that a female senior member of my DOI Communications team was physically assaulted today by a Democrat staffer from the PAC American Bridge,” she told Politico.
Interior officials filed a police report, The Daily Caller News Foundation has learned, but it has not yet been processed, police said. It will be made public in seven to 10 days once processed.”
“The last NYPD cops assigned full-time to New York City public schools are being moved out — despite nationwide calls for heightened security in the wake of last month’s Florida shootings.
As the nation mourned the 17 victims of the school massacre at Parkland, Fla., the NYPD was removing Sgt. Raul Espinet from his post at Francis Lewis HS in Fresh Meadows, Queens — where he had worked for more than a dozen years. Parents, teachers and students are livid over the beloved cop’s departure.
Espinet’s position was eliminated because cops in Mayor de Blasio’s new community policing units will visit schools while patrolling the neighborhood, according to the NYPD. School safety agents are stationed at all schools, but are not armed…
Parents at the overcrowded Queens school, crammed with more than 4,400 students, are protesting the change.
“The community officer is in no way an acceptable replacement,” says a PTA petition launched last week.
The PTA is demanding that the NYPD and city Department of Education bring back an armed cop to Francis Lewis. It has collected more than 1,000 signatures in just two days, according to co-president Linda Lovett.
“It’s ridiculous,” Lovett said. “All over the country they are telling you ‘arm the teachers, get an officer in your school.’ New York City had a designated officer and they are actually cutting the program . . . they are making us less secure.”
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President Trump’s choice of Gina Haspel for CIA Director is receiving praise from even the President’s strongest critics as Haspel’s controversial role in secret CIA torture prisons is causing a stir in some circles.
Haspel is the first ever woman to run the CIA.
Prolific Trump critic James Clapper praised the President for previously choosing Haspel as Deputy Director.
“It speaks well of him for picking a seasoned veteran of the agency who is widely and deeply respected by the workforce as well as those outside the agency. She has also been a strong proponent for integration, not only within CIA, but across the intelligence community.”
Haspel has worked for the CIA for over thirty years, and during that time, she has played a key role in the agency’s torture program.
“Haspel reportedly ran the CIA’s first overseas detention site in Thailand, where imprisoned militants were repeatedly waterboarded, The New York Times reported in February 2017…
Haspel briefly ran a secret CIA prison where accused terrorists Abu Zubayadah and Abd al Rahim al-Nashiri were waterboarded in 2002, according to former U.S. intelligence officials.
“Zubayadah alone was waterboarded 83 times in a single month, had his head repeatedly slammed into walls and endured other harsh methods before interrogators decided he had no useful information to provide,” The Times reported.
She also helped carry out an order that the CIA destroy its waterboarding videos. That order prompted a lengthy Justice Department investigation that ended without charges.”
“President Trump said Tuesday he has ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and plans to nominate CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace him as the nation’s top diplomat, orchestrating a major change to his national security team amid delicate outreach that includes possible talks with North Korea.
Trump and Tillerson have had a fraught relationship for many months. Trump told reporters Tuesday that he ultimately decided to fire the secretary because they disagreed over strategy in key areas of foreign policy, such as the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, the approach to North Korea and the overall tone of U.S. diplomacy.
Still, the shake-up left officials at the State Department and throughout the national security community flummoxed, and the circumstances of the firing were in dispute.
White House officials said that — as Tillerson traveled through Africa last week — White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly called to wake him up in the wee hours there Saturday to alert him that Trump had decided to replace him. Kelly then suggested that Tillerson return to Washington as soon as possible. Tillerson cut his trip short Monday…
“I actually got along well with Rex, but really it was a different mind-set, a different thinking,” Trump said Tuesday as he departed the White House for a trip to California. “When you look at the Iran deal, I think it’s terrible. I guess he thought it was okay. . . . So we were not really thinking the same. With Mike, Mike Pompeo, we have a very similar thought process. I think it’s going to go very well.”